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Sicilian Rice Ball Casserole

Casserole Ingredients:

  • 2 cups brown rice (uncooked)
  • 4 cups water
  • 1(2.5oz) Chicken Italian Sausage link, casing removed
  • 10 oz. (.65 lbs) Extra Lean Ground Turkey (1/2 package)
  • ¼ cup onion, minced
  • Salt and pepper
  • 5 oz. frozen peas
  • 16 oz. tomato sauce
  • 1/3 cup egg beaters or egg whites
  • ½ cup romano grated cheese
  • 4 tbsp seasoned breadcrumbs
  • 1 ¼ cup part skim shredded mozzarella

A simple green salad or cucumber and tomato salad is all you need to complete this healthy meal.

Casserole Preparation Time: 20 minutes

Cooking Time: 30 minutes


Cook rice in water according to package directions.  Set aside to cool.

Meanwhile, sauté chicken sausage meat; cook until brown as you break up the pieces as it cooks.  Add turkey and onions until brown, continue breaking as it cooks.  Season with light salt and pepper to taste (optional), then add peas and 8 oz of tomato sauce and simmer on low, covered, about 20 minutes. (more…)

Skipping a meal or two… What is the big deal?

       When attempting a weight loss program, it is no secret that less food needs to be eaten in order for pounds to be lost. However how much less food is a question that can be confusing.  Your body needs a specific number of calories per day in order to function properly. Typically, this number ranges from between 1,500 and 3,500 – quite a wide range.  Meal plans with very low calories my be successful initially, but are more often then not difficult to maintain.  Statistically the weight loss from a low calorie diet is too often regained plus a few extra pounds.  When your body gets significantly less calories than what it needs to function properly, it goes into “starvation mode.” This means that instead of burning calories, your metabolism basically shuts off, and stores all food as fat. Your body isn’t sure when it will be fed next, and therefore the metabolism stops working.

Here is some food for thought.  Theoretically the human body needs an estimated 15 calories per pound of body weight to maintain. A 150 lb. person needs 2,250 calories daily to maintain body weight. Daily calorie totals lower than said 2,250 will result in a reduction. Eating 1,750 calories daily over seven days will result in a 3,500-calorie deficit that reduces body weight by 1 lb. A weight loss of 1 lb. per week is more likely to be maintained compared to lower calorie totals that result in larger amounts of weight loss quickly.

While it is important to cut calories in order to lose weight, cutting too many calories can actually result in a negative way. Start by cutting around 500 calories a day in order to achieve optimal weight loss.  Let your metabolism work for you instead of you working for your metabolism!  Fitness does not have a finish line but your lifestyle will take you where you want to go!








Reduce Your Risk


Healthy eating practices and regular physical activity are like two sides of the same coin, interacting in a variety of ways to improve our strength and stamina and to increase our resistance to many chronic diseases and acute illnesses.  In fact, the nutrition and physical activity recommendations for reducing your risk of heart disease also reduce your risk of high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, obesity, and some forms of cancer!

Reduce risk for heart disease, stroke and high blood pressure:  Regular physical activity increases high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL, the “good” cholesterol) and lowers triglycerides in the blood, improves the strength of the heart, helps maintain healthy blood pressure, and limits the progression of atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries)

Reduce risk for obesity:  Regular physical activity maintains lean body mass and promotes more healthful levels of body fat, may help in appetite control and increases energy expenditure and the use of fat as an energy source.

Reduces risk for type 2 diabetes:  Regular physical activity enhances the action of insulin, which improves the sells’ uptake of glucose fro the blood, and can improve blood control in people with diabetes, which in turn reduces the risk for; or delays the onset of, diabetes-related complications.

Reduce risk of osteoporosis:  Regular physical activity strengthens bones and enhances muscular strength and flexibility, thereby reducing the likelihood of falls and the incidence of fractures and other injuries when falls occur.

Regular physical activity is also known to improve our sleep patterns, reduce our risk for upper respiratory infections by improving immune function and reduce anxiety and mental stress.


PUT YOUR BODY TO WORK- The Complete Bodyweight Workout

Everyone knows exercise plays an important role in our general health, but whether it’s a lack of motivation, the need to travel to the gym, the cost of equipment, or simply know-how, these supposed obstacles often stand in our way.  In reality, all you need is yourself.  Here’s how you can get a full-body workout with nothing but your body.

The Four Core Rules

Before jumping into the types of exercise—cardio, upper body, core, and lower body—and their explanations, here are a few very important fundamental rules to remember:

  1. Always remember to breathe.  This seems obvious, but when you’re in the middle of an exercise you may actually forget.  In most cases you’ll exhale when you do the hard concentric work (e.g. the pushing up part of a push up), and inhale on the eccentric part (e.g. when you lower your body for the push up).
  2. Form is extremely important.  If you do an exercise wrong, what seems like progress initially will quickly dissipate and possibly result in injury.  Be sure you’re doing the exercises correctly before you begin.  If you know a professional, ask them to help guide you or simply view the detailed videos Fitastic provides.  We will explain proper form and it is your responsibility to ensure you’re doing the exercises properly and not cutting any corners.
  3. Take it slowly. While aerobic exercise if often the exception, most other exercises are best performed slowly.  This doesn’t mean you should take long breaks in between each push up, squat, or lunge, but that you shouldn’t perform each as quickly as possible. Going slowly will work and engage the muscle more and make you stronger. (more…)

Chicken Kabobs

Serves 2 


6 oz. boneless raw chicken breast, cut into chunks 4 c. raw, red bell pepper, cut into large pieces
3 c. raw broccoli florets
6 c. raw mushrooms, whole

2 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
4 c. tomatoes, cut into pieces
5 tsp. olive oil
1 tsp. ground basil
1 1/2 c. chicken broth, condensed
1 tsp. ground oregano
2 cloves of garlic, peeled and finely chopped


Combine oil, chicken broth, vinegar, basil, oregano, and garlic in baking dish to create a marinade. Prepare eight skewer kabobs: on each skewer, place chicken, bell pepper, broccoli, (more…)

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