Do you want to lose 10, 30, 50 or more pounds? Have you recently reached your weight loss goal but want to maintain it? Are you willing to dedicate yourself to a healthy lifestyle? Then this blog is for you!

I have lost 118 pounds and have maintained the weight loss for two years. One of the things I have learned during the weight loss process is that it is much easier to reach and maintain your goal weight if you surround yourself with like-minded individuals to support you in the process (whether they be in person or online).

I also have learned that learning as much as possible about healthy living gives you the knowledge and expertise needed to lose weight the “right” way. So this blog includes regular posts, a book list, website list, TV list, video list and book and website of the month. In addition, there is a recipe of the month and product review section. Visitors to Weight Loss Aficionado can just enjoy the site for informational purposes or can comment on posts, ask questions, share resources, their triumphs and pitfalls during the weight loss process.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Try Reko Pizelles!

 I was out with a friend today and found amazingly delicious low cal cookies: Reko Pizzelles. They come in six flavors: vanilla, anise, chocolate, maple, lemon and dulce de leche (caramel). They are only 23 calories each, have no trans fats and no preservatives. They are light, crispy and slightly sweet. The Reko website has a bunch of recipes using their pizzelles but I enjoy them as is! Go to for more info.

More About Green Tea!

Below is an informative article about green tea that I found on the website.


Green Tea and Weight loss

The wonders of green tea are well researched and documented, and are becoming wider known as a result.

Among the numerous benefits that drinking green tea has, the most interesting for those of us who are trying to
lose weight is its weight loss and body fat burning properties.

In this essential guide to green tea, we'll explore these benefits and more, and provide you with all the other vital information you need to make green tea a part of your
healthy diet and weight loss plan.

What is Green Tea?

Basically green tea is the least processed of four different types of tea; green, oolong, black and white, all of which come for the Camellia sinensis bush.

Unlike the other tea variants, green tea leaves are steamed.

Processing them in this way preserves the compound epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), which is a powerful antioxidant that gives green tea many of its health properties.

Camellia sinensis has many different varieties and because things such as that the region it comes from and the climate and soil it was grown in all influence the characteristics of the tea produced, there are numerous varieties of green tea.

Generally speaking, the best green teas come from Japan and China.

The most popular varieties of Japanese green tea include:
  • Sencha.
  • Gyokurocha.
  • Bancha.
  • Mat'cha.

Because China is a very large country with many different regions (known as provinces) there are a very large range of Chinese green teas.

The most popular varieties of Chinese green tea include:
  • Dragon Well (also called Lung Ching or Long Jing).
  • Hui Ming.
  • Long Ding.
  • Hua Ding.
  • Qing Ding.
  • Gunpowder.

In addition to Japan and China, good quality green teas also come from countries like Taiwan, India and Sri Lanka.

Herbal Teas

Because of the health benefits of green teas and their growing popularity in the western-world, many companies now produce and sell a range of hot-water infusions made with herbs.

These infusions are often called "teas" for marketing purposes but they are technically not teas because they are not from the Camellia sinensis plant.

While these herbal teas aren't green teas and may not have the same health benefits as green teas they may have other benefits.

Green Tea and weight loss

Many research studies have shown that drinking green tea can have a positive effect on our body weight as well as on our general health.

These studies indicate that green tea helps us shed unwanted kilos by helping to:
  1. Increase our metabolism (burn more calories/kilojoules throughout the day).
  2. Increase our body's ability to burn fat (fat oxidation).

While some of green tea's effect on our metabolism is known to come from the caffeine it contains, green tea doesn't have as much caffeine as coffee but helps the body burn more energy than coffee, so we know that the effect doesn't just come down to its caffeine levels.

Other Health Benefits of Green Tea

As well as helping us to lose weight, green tea is believed to have many other health benefits.

Among the most impressive of these, green tea is said to help:
  • Reduce our risk of developing many forms of cancer.
  • Inhibit the growth of cancer cells.
  • Lower total cholesterol levels.
  • Improve the ratio of good (HDL) cholesterol to bad (LDL) cholesterol.
  • Help reduce the risk and treat rheumatoid arthritis.
  • Reduce the risk of experiencing cardiovascular disease.
  • Treat impaired immune function.
  • Help prevent tooth decay.
  • Prevent food poisoning.

In order to enjoy these health benefits and others, researchers recommend drinking green tea on a regular basis.

In fact, many recommend drinking between 5 and 10 cups per day to get the full benefits from drinking green teas.

Is green tea good for everyone?

It is thought that not everyone should drink green tea or large quantities of green tea like those recommended by many researchers.

Because green tea does contain relatively high amounts of caffeine, it has been recommended that anyone with the following conditions speak with their doctor before starting to consume green teas:
  • Heart problems or high blood pressure.
  • Kidney disease.
  • Hyperthyroidism (an overactive thyroid).
  • An anxiety or nervous disorder.
  • Bleeding or blood clotting disorder.
  • Any condition requiring you to take blood thinning drugs.
  • Plant related allergies.
  • If you are pregnant or could become pregnant.
  • If you are breast-feeding a baby.

Because green tea contains relatively large amounts of caffeine it has been suggested that it is not appropriate for consumption by children either.

In addition to avoiding green tea if you suffer from any of the medical conditions listed above, anyone taking medication should also consult their doctor before starting to consume green tea to make sure it is compatible with the drugs they are taking.

People who don't take medication or have any of the conditions listed above can still experience the following negative side-effects if they consume too much caffeine (including that contained in green tea):
  • Irritability.
  • Insomnia.
  • Heart palpitations.
  • Dizziness.

Buying, Storing and Brewing Green Tea

Getting the most benefits from green tea often means buying, storing and preparing it well.

When it comes to buying green teas, cost can not only reflect the quality of the tea, but also its rarity.

If you're new to drinking green tea, it's probably best to try some of the more moderately priced full-flavored teas first. If in doubt about which variety to try, ask your local
herbalist who should be more than happy to make some recommendations.

Unless their convenience is absolutely critical to you, it is best to avoid tea bags which often contain at least some amounts of lower grade tea.

Storing green tea well is important if you want it to retain its taste, freshness and health properties.

As a general guide it is recommended that you keep your green teas in:
  • Airtight tea tins or airtight glass jars.
  • Cool, dark environments (such as cupboards).
  • Areas away from aromatic foods (because green teas absorb aromas easily).

Most green teas don't store well for more than around six months, so it's better to buy small quantities more regularly than it is to buy large quantities less frequently.

To prepare a fine cup of green tea it's always best to follow the manufacturer's instructions for each variety.

Having said that, here are some general things to consider:
  • The quantity of tea leaves - most green tea experts suggest using about 2 to 4g of tea per cup.
  • Water - fresh spring water is ideal.
  • Brewing method - brewing green tea in a pot is best, letting the leaves float freely.
  • Infusion temperature - green tea is best brewed in water that has only just begun to form bubbles.
  • Brewing time - most green teas should be brewed for no longer than 1½ to 3 minutes.

For those of us who don't particularly like the taste of green tea, the good news is that adding lemon, sugar or milk to improve its taste doesn't seem to affect the antioxidant levels of the tea and therefore shouldn't remove any of the health benefits associated with drinking it.

Just remember though if you are watching your waist line that adding things like sugar and milk will add extra calories/kilojoules.


The wonders of green tea are well researched and documented, and are becoming wider known as a result.

Among the numerous benefits that drinking green tea has, the most interesting for visitors of this website are those that relate to helping us lose weight and burn body fat.

In this essential guide to green tea, we explored these and other benefits and provided you with all the other bits of important information you need to make green tea a part of your healthy diet and weight loss plan.


Friday, May 25, 2012

The Benefits of Green Tea!

Green tea is an antioxidant, an anti-inflammatory and an anti-microbial that can also assist with weight loss. It is a natural source of caffeine which increases the metabolism and helps burn fat and calories.

Green tea is now my tea of choice. I generally drink hot green tea in the morning and after dinner and make sweetened green iced tea (with Equal) in a pitcher to drink as a cold beverage throughout the day. My favorite tea bags to use are Celestial Seasoning Authentic Green Tea.

Green tea can now be found in everything from supplements to food products to beauty products! Some of my favorite items with green tea include:
  •  Kozy Shack Simply Well Green Tea Chai Pudding cups 
  • Trader Joe’s green tea mints (3 mints= 1 cup of green tea)
  • Sencha Green Tea Mints (3 mints= 1 cup of green tea)

 So, if you haven’t already, try green tea!

Monday, May 21, 2012

7 ways To Eat Mindfully!

I found the following article on It includes great tips on how to eat mindfully and decrease the amount of food you consume each day. I have been using strategy #1 since I began my diet and it definitely works. I plan on trying some of the other strategies listed.
7 Ways to Eat Mindfully

Professor Brian Wansink, PhD, is the author of Mindless Eating: Why We Eat More Than We Think and director of the Food and Brand Lab at Cornell University. He has conducted more than 250 experiments proving that people have no idea how much they're putting in their mouths or for what reason.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, 32.2 percent of American adults are obese. Wansink wants to help. "If we knew why we ate the way we do, we could eat a little less, eat a little healthier, and enjoy it a lot more," he says.

Here are seven essential tidbits from Wansink:

1. People who stock up at discount stores eat up to 48 percent more. If you buy in bulk, put pretzels and other snacks in portion-size Baggies. Never, never, ever eat out of the box.

2. The longer you sit at the table, the more you'll eat. Dine with one friend, you'll eat about 35 percent more. With a group of seven, you'll eat 96 percent more. if you're trying to lose weight, eat alone or with the smallest group possible, and pace yourself with the lightest eater.

3. If you pre-plate your food in the kitchen, you'll eat 14 percent less than if you serve yourself a smaller portion at the table and then take seconds.

4. Brian's rule of two: When eating at a buffet, put only two items at a time on your plate. Even if you make repeated trips, you'll eat a lot less.

5. Always eat in the same room of your house (but not in front of a TV or computer). You won't snack as much.

6. Don't leave serving dishes on the table unless they're filled with vegetables.

7. A Butterfinger or a hug? What do you really want? Physical hunger builds gradually. Emotional hunger develops suddenly.

Read more:

Friday, May 18, 2012

Aim for Meals That Are Between 300 and 400 Calories!

I always aim to eat between 300 and 400 calories a meal. This allows me to have 3 snacks a day between 100 and 200 calories. The article below lets you visually see the portion sizes of healthy meals that are between 300 and 400 calories.

What Do 300 Calorie Meals Look Like?
By Jim F. The Diet Blog
Visual gallery of a series of meals in the 300-400 Calorie range. The visual representation gives an idea of portion size.

Breakfast – 290 Calories
1 whole wheat English muffin
2 pats low fat butter
1 hard boiled egg
1/2 cup of fruit
8 oz fruit juice
8 oz water

Cereal – 300 Calories
1 cup of cereal
8 oz 2% milk
1 banana
1 coffee or tea

Baked potato – 305 Calories
1 medium baked potato
2 tablespoons sour cream
2 tablespoons salsa
1 cup sliced melon
12 oz water

Oatmeal – 325 Calories
1 cup oatmeal with raisins
1 cup of fruit
1 cup coffee or tea
1 banana

Soup – 350 Calories
1 bowl of soup
1 small tossed salad
2 tablespoons reduced fat oil and vinegar dressing
12 oz water
4 saltine crackers

Chicken – 345 Calories
6 oz of chicken
1 cup of green beans
2 pats of low-fat butter
1 small tossed salad
2 tablespoons reduced fat oil and vinegar dressing
12 oz water

Chicken Salad – 350 Calories
1 large tossed salad
2 tablespoons reduced fat oil and vinegar dressing
6 oz sliced chicken
1 cup of low fat wheat thin crackers
12 oz water

Scrambled eggs – 360 Calories
2 scrambled eggs
2 strips of turkey bacon
1 piece whole wheat toast
1 pat of low fat butter
1 coffee or tea
8 oz water

Fish – 365 Calories
6 oz broiled white fish
1 cup of mashed potatoes
1 pat of butter
1/2 cup of peas
8 oz diet iced tea

Chicken and Rice – 395 Calories
6 oz cooked chicken
2 tablespoons of barbecue sauce
1 cup of mixed vegetables
1/2 cup of brown rice
1 small tossed salad
2 tablespoons reduced fat oil and vinegar dressing
12 oz water

It’s hard to believe that the average American
consumes around 3,800 Calories per day. That’s more than all the food shown on this page. Highly processed foods are very easy to overeat.

Photos courtesy of Dr. Stephen Butler and Leslie Stefanowicz, NP at

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Reassessing Your Goal Weight!

When I started my diet I created an initial goal weight that was at the top of my recommended weight. When I chose my “goal weight” it was a stretch for me. I remember thinking to myself how am I going to lose 90 pounds! But I did! Last week I finally reached my goal weight. 

When I speak to people who have lost large amounts of weight they usually tell me they reassessed their goal weight during the weight loss process. In my opinion it’s not important whether you are at the top, middle or bottom of your recommended weight. It’s whether you are comfortable living in your body.

Honestly, I am happy with every part of my body except for my stomach. With the amount of core training I do each day, my stomach should be ripped. It probably is, underneath the sheath of fat! If only there was a special potion I could drink to get rid of stomach fat!

Unfortunately, the only way to lose stomach fat is through diet or liposuction.  I’m sticking with the first option. Therefore I have reassessed my goal weight and am planning to work towards losing another 10-15 pounds. Hopefully the 10 or 15 pounds will come from my stomach not the rest of my body!

Try Panko!

Panko is the Japanese word for bread crumbs. I have been hearing a lot about Panko but had never tried cooking with it before. So today I bought a package of the whole wheat version. It is lower in salt and fat than traditional bread crumbs and the consistency is different; Panko looks like flakes rather than crumbs. It is also lighter and crunchier than traditional breadcrumbs. 

It can be used in any recipe that traditional breadcrumbs are used in. I simply seasoned strips of chicken in Adobo and Dijonnaise then dipped the chicken in Panko, sprayed both sides lightly with Pam and baked for 25 minutes turning the strips over half way through the cooking cycle. It was delicious!