Monday, July 18, 2016

Cowboy Caviar Cauliflower Rice Bowl


Here’s another crazy-easy and tasty recipe that we’ve made non-stop lately. It only requires three ingredients– ok, technically, four because you do not want to miss out on the guacamole– and comes together in no time at all. (You can also make this meal ahead of time and just reheat it, which is what we do for a super fast weeknight dinner.) This recipe combines one of my newest obsessions, Trader Joe’s jarred Cowboy Caviar, with ground beef, cauliflower rice (also, obsessed), and a big ol’ scoop of guacamole, which, in my opinion totally MAKES the meal. I hope you guys enjoy this recipe as much as we do!



  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 jar (13 ounces) Trader Joe’s Cowboy Caviar
  • 16 ounces riced cauliflower
  • guacamole (optional, but highly recommended)


Cook ground beef in a pan on the stove top; break up meat as it cooks. When almost fully browned, add Cowboy Caviar to the pan. Heat for a few minutes.


Remove Cowboy Caviar meat mixture from stove and transfer it to a separate bowl/plastic storage container. Use the same pan and leftover fat from ground beef to cook cauliflower rice until translucent and lightly browned, but not mushy.

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When cauliflower rice is finished cooking, serve with Cowboy Caviar + ground beef and a scoop of guacamole.

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Makes 4 servings

Macros: P: 28 C: 22 F: 8 (does not include guacamole)

from Carrots 'N' Cake

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The Time I Almost Ate At Taco Bell… (I’ve Been Keeping A Tiny Little Secret!)

I am thrilled to announce we are expecting our own little Food Babe this winter.  I know all you moms and dads out there have been waiting for this moment for a long time… I laugh just thinking about all … Continued

The post The Time I Almost Ate At Taco Bell… (I’ve Been Keeping A Tiny Little Secret!) appeared first on Food Babe.

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Dear Mark: Swimming Tips; High Weight, Low Reps vs High Reps, Low Weight

Swimming - An Essential Primal Skill FinalFor today’s edition of Dear Mark, I’m answering two questions. First up are some swimming tips for a novice swimmer who read last week’s post and wants to incorporate swimming into the schedule. What strokes to learn? What workouts to try? I also discuss the downsides of chlorinated pools. Next, a new study claims that whether you lift heavy weight for low reps or lift light for high reps has no effect on strength or size, so long as you go to failure. Is this true?

Let’s go:

Hey Mark, really liked the swimming post. Got any tips for someone without much experience in the water? I’ve also heard that chlorinated pool water is a concern…that true?

Thanks for all you do!

Learn to tread water. Treading water should be easy. It’s like standing, on land; it’s the default mode. Once you can tread for 5 minutes without freaking out or struggling, progress to actual swimming.

Start with, and maybe even stick to, basic freestyle. It’s a great stroke with strong fitness potential. You don’t ever have to progress past this if you don’t want. Take lessons, read books, or watch videos to learn; technique is really, really important here.

Butterfly is the “hardest” stroke. If you can get the technique down (it’s tricky), you really develop explosive power.

Breaststroke is the “easiest.” In fact, I make it a point to do some breaststrokes in the pool whenever I do my post workout cool-downs to stretch my muscles out.

Learn to dolphin kick. It’s an extremely powerful and empowering way to move through the water that uses the entire body, not just “the legs.”

I’ve had fun with a quick sprint workout lately. Sprint one length freestyle. Spring one length dolphin kicking on your back, keeping your head out of the water and your hands on your chest. Sprint two lengths freestyle. Done. Do 3-6 more cycles, depending on the length of a “length.” Get ready for sore hamstrings (those dolphin kicks are no joke).

Loosen up with an easy 5-10 minutes of breaststroke. This’ll really stretch out your tissues and prepare you for sleep if you can hack it toward the end of the day. Of course, if you want to go hard, breaststroke can leave your lats and triceps incredible sore.

More advanced swimmers looking to train their swimming can use a program like Swim Smooth, which I hear good things about.

Beware the “post-swim appetite.” As mentioned earlier, being in cool water forces you to burn more calories (via brown fat activation) to maintain your body temperature. This makes you hungrier than normal. As a result, swimmers tend to eat more food than other athletes, and several studies have found that swimming has little to no effect on fat loss compared to equivalent amounts of other types of training. If you can resist the massive spike in appetite many people experience after swimming, however, you’ll likely burn a little extra fat.

If swimming is your primary form of training, make sure you’re also lifting heavy things and getting plenty of magnesium. Lifting provides the impact you (and your bones) are missing, and magnesium intake is especially important for a swimmer’s bone mineral density. Supplement, eat spinach/almonds/blackstrap molasses.

What about the swimming medium—should you stick to “ancestral bodies of water” like salt water pools, lakes and rivers, and the ocean?

If you can, yes. Chlorine tends to react with various bodily fluids to form disinfection byproducts, or DBPs. Some DBPs have unpleasant health effects or are associated with unpleasant health conditions. When chlorinated pool water meets dimethylamine (found in urine and sweat), nitrosamine carcinogens form, and appear in pools at concentrations up to 500-fold higher than drinking water. These nitrosamines may be absorbed through skin. Chloramine, another DBP has been linked to asthma in pool workers and elite swimmers. All told, you can find over 100 chemical byproducts in swimming pools, many of them toxic.

But swimming in chlorinated pools is better than not swimming at all, and the people who seem to suffer the most from pool-related maladies are those who spend inordinate time in and around pools, especially enclosed ones. Elite swimmers with their 4 hour practices and lifeguards who breathe the fumes for 8 hours a day are probably most at risk. Folks swimming for pleasure and a short workout or two a few times a week, not so much.

Most of all, have fun with it. Make sure every visit to the pool is an enjoyable one. You’re a beginner and you don’t want to learn negative associations.


Curious about your thoughts on this research:

It’s a very cool study (PDF).

Here’s what happened:

Young men with at least two years of lifting experience were split into two training groups for 12 weeks. One group lifted lighter weights (30-50% of their one rep max) for 20-30 reps. The other group lifted heavier weights (75-90% of one rep max) for 8-12 reps. Both groups trained to failure, lifting until they couldn’t.

On Mondays and Thursdays, they did inclined leg press/seated row supersets, barbell bench press/hamstring curl supersets, and front planks. On Tuesdays and Fridays were machine overhead press/bicep curl supersets, tricep extension/wide-grip lat pulldown supersets, and machine knee extensions. So while they weren’t hoisting barbells and doing Olympic lifts, these were primarily compound movements.

Each session, subjects did three sets of each exercise. Researchers adjusted the weight between sets to maintain the prescribed rep ranges.

After 12 weeks of this regimen, they ran some tests on the subjects.

Both groups experienced similar gains in strength (one rep max) and hypertrophy. The only difference lay in the bench press one rep max. The subjects who lifted heavier weights for fewer reps saw larger strength increases in that lift.

Other studies  have found similar results. Neither load nor volume matter much when you compare moderate to high reps, as long as the trainees push themselves to failure. Effort seems to be the key factor.

Yet that’s not the final word. When you compare 8-12 reps at 70% of 1RM to 3-5 reps at 90% of 1RM with back squats and barbell bench presses, things change. The higher-intensity, lower-rep regimen resulted in bigger arms and a higher max bench. Max squat and leg development, which didn’t differ between rep schemes, may benefit equally from higher volume and higher intensity.

To be absolutely “safe,” you can try all three. Oscillating between low reps, heavy weight (3-5 reps, 90% 1RM); medium reps, medium weight (8-12 reps, 70% 1RM); and high reps, low weight (30-50% 1RM) may be an effective way to reap the benefits of all three regimens.

This is an interesting topic. I may revisit it in a future post.

Thanks for the questions, everyone. And thanks for reading! Be sure to chime in down below if you have anything to add—or ask!

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from Mark's Daily Apple

Hydrating Foods

Most people could do a better job of staying hydrated. Counting glasses of H2O is important, but so are the foods you eat. Here’s the lowdown on some in-season foods to perk up your hydration.

Assess Your Hydration
The best way to tell if you’re getting enough fluids is to pay attention to your body. Urination should be frequent and light yellow to clear in color. The more fluid you lose in sweat, the more you should replace. Aim to take in half your body weight in fluid ounces as a baseline – that’s 75 fluid ounces for a 150-pound person. If you exercise, drink more — especially when working out in the heat and humidity.

Fluid-Boosting Foods
In addition to drinking plenty of water, reach for these seasonal foods to help stay hydrated this summer.

Iceberg is low in calories and has one of the highest water contents of any food. Other leafy varieties like romaine and green leaf are also good options.

Get more from: salads and lettuce cups

You can feel the hydration pouring from this melon; it also contains plenty of the antioxidant lycopene.

Get more from: smoothies, salads and frozen treats

Nothing says cool and refreshing like a fresh cuke! Keep the peel on for extra nutrients and flavor.

Get more from: snacking on raw veggies, infused water and salsa

It’s the very best time of year for juicy tomatoes, which are rich in vitamins A and C, fiber and potassium.

Get more from: pizza, salsa and gazpacho

It may be surprising, but there’s a hefty dose of water in this cruciferous veggie; it also has potential cancer-fighting properties.

Get more from: cauliflower rice, or a new take on tabbouleh

Fresh herbs
Leafy fresh herbs like basil, parsley and mint have a remarkably high moisture content — use them often in a wide variety of recipes to reap their nutritional benefits.

Get more from: salads, pressed juices and pesto

Dana Angelo White, MS, RD, ATC, is a registered dietitian, certified athletic trainer and owner of Dana White Nutrition, Inc., which specializes in culinary and sports nutrition.

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