Just Right Set™ Bariatric Launch

Just Right Set™ Bariatric Launch
NEW! Just Right Set™ bariatric

Monday, August 14, 2017

Sign of a Healthy Lifestyle—Lots of Herbs for Cooking

#HerbsFor Cooking

Friday, August 11, 2017

Our New Bariatric Ebook has Eye Appeal AND Stomach Appeal!

Bariatric RecipesWe are excited to share with you, our new eBook for the bariatric community!

This eBook is not only a great guide as to how our Just Right Set™ bariatric can aid in your portion controlled lifestyle, but it is also a free resource for wonderful recipes by Nikki Massie of Bariatric Foodie.

Explore the stomach appeal and eye appeal of this new eBook as Bariatric Foodie offers visually stunning photographs to go alongside the various breakfast, lunch, dinner and snack recipes presented!

Here is a delicious preview of what the recipe's are like in our eBook, for your eyes to feast upon!

Enjoy what you see? Get the complete eBook by clicking the link below.

Download Our Free  Bariatric Recipes eBook

Monday, August 7, 2017

Sign of a Healthy Lifestyle—Picnic Baskets


Friday, August 4, 2017

6 Tips for Living Healthy in the Summer with Diabetes

Summertime is a great time to enjoy fresh foods and so many outdoor activities we can only take advantage of at this time of year because of the sunny days and warmer weather. Sometimes it can be overwhelming, particularly if we have a chronic health condition like diabetes. When living with diabetes it is important to be mindful of how we can be affected by being outdoors more, being more active while being sensitive to how the weather can affect us. It shouldn’t stop us from having fun, we just need to plan ahead, fit in what we love to do, and balance it with how we need to take care of ourselves day-to-day. Living a healthy lifestyle means staying active, eating well, incorporating de-stressing activities while keeping hydrated and paying attention to how much sleep we get. Below are 6 tips for how to stay well, live well and make the most of the summer while living with diabetes:

1.Take advantage of outdoor fun
  • Camp out in your back yard or in a state park
  • Enjoy an outdoor concert or movie
  • Take a picnic to your favorite local park
  •  Walk to the park and swing on a swing at the playground
  • Enjoy a backyard healthy barbecue with family and friends

2. Stay cool emotionally
  •  Look for a local outdoor class for yoga or tai chi
  •  Get up early and garden…don’t have your own? Volunteer at a community garden
  • Take an evening walk after dinner with your dog

3. Take advantage of summer fresh foods
  • Enjoy fresh fruits low in sugar like all berries, plums, papaya, cantaloupe, apricots and avocado 
  •  Discover vegetables in season like green beans, tomatoes, cucumber, eggplant, asparagus, zucchini, peppers and beets
  • Make the most of all the fresh herbs in season to season salads, garnish main dishes or add color to a meal 

4. Keep cool with hydration
  • Enjoy cool water with a squeeze of lemon in your portable water bottle
  • Keep flavored sparkling waters handy in the refrigerator or cooler
  •  Make fresh fruit infused home brewed teas ready to pour from your refrigerator

5. Plan meals that don’t add heat to your kitchen

6. Make the most of summer time activities
  • Play tennis by taking advantage of the free courts in your local park
  • Enjoy a bike ride. Don’t own a bike? Borrow a neighbor’s or rent one for an hour
  • Go kayaking by taking a trip to your local lake or reservoir and rent one for a day of fun
  • Swim at a local public pool or YMCA
  • Meet up at a local park and play Frisbee with friends and/or your dog
  • Tend to your yard and garden. Don’t have a backyard? Make your garden in pots and include herbs and vegetables to enjoy beyond the pot
Now is the time to make the most of your summer. Make sure to check in with your doctor, nutritionist and diabetes educator as you enhance your diet with fresh foods and more outdoor activities. And always remember to use sunscreen, wear a hat and stay hydrated! Enjoy! And Live vibrant!

Monday, July 31, 2017

Sign of a Healthy Lifestyle—Homegrown Herbs


Friday, July 28, 2017

FitVine Product Review

FitVine Review
The FitVine Wines that were Reviewed
Don’t we all hate to admit it? Facebook is a great resource for discovering new things not only about friends and acquaintances but also about new products. I discovered the existence of FitVine. This company caught my eye because its mission is to produce wines with less carbs and calories than other wines we drink. They also use a process that eliminates any residual sugars and extracts more tannins and sulfites. They want to create wines that are made to support a healthy, active lifestyle.

The Facts about FitVine
Through processes of malolactic fermentation and dry fermentation they eliminate carbs and reduce calories in their wines. Then through filtering all of their wines with both diatomaceous earth and micron pads they also reduce tannins and sulfites. Not only do they address calories and carbs, they also provide relief for those with typical allergies related to wine.

FitVine has 95 or less calories and 0.2 grams of sugar (average calories for a glass of wine is 125 calories and sugars are 1.2 grams)/ 5 oz glass. The overall carbs for FitVine are 3g of carbohydrates (average carb for a glass of wine is 4 grams) /per 5oz glass. The alcohol content ranges 13.4% - 13.9% (average alcohol for a glass of wine is 11.5%13.5%)/per 5oz glass. I found it interesting that the calories and carbs were lower than an average glass of wine yet the alcohol level was clearly on the high side. Depending on your definition of “Fit” this could be good or bad news.

What Wines are Available
No doubt about it, I enjoy a glass or two of wine on the weekends and sometimes during the week, depending on how well it is going. I am also someone committed to a healthy lifestyle, which means being mindful of what I consume and how much I consume. I also like a variety of wines depending on the time of year and what I am eating. That is why when I saw the FitVine ad on Facebook it caught my attention and I decided to try it out.

I purchased a bottle of each wine that was available: Chardonnay ($15.99), Sauvignon Blanc ($17.99), Pinot Noir ($19.99) and Cabernet Sauvignon ($15.99). Besides these bottled wines, it looks like they now offer a Pinot Grigio ($17.99) as well.
How did they Taste
I tasted the wines at separate times. For each bottle, I opened it and experienced an initial taste without any food, and then I drank a glass with dinner. The Cabernet Sauvignon I took to a friend’s house so all those at dinner also got to try this wine.

Bottom line, each wine tasted pleasant, some with a strong finish either in the mid-palate (Sauvignon Blanc) or back of the throat (Cabernet Sauvignon) that I did not find particularly pleasant. I did discover that the longer you let it breathe the milder the aftertaste becomes. This seemed particularly true of the Sauvignon Blanc. My favorite of those I tried ended up being the Sauvignon Blanc, once it had been open for a while.

In my assessment, these are not wines you would serve at a party, or generally, but you might share them with others that are mindful-eaters, if they understood their purpose.  I can see enjoying them at home as part of a healthy lifestyle and certainly as part of a specific program where you were watching what you eat and perhaps the carbs and calories you are consuming whether for an up coming race or a period dedicated to trimming down.

How did they make me Feel
I really liked the idea of being able to have 2 glasses of wine and not worry about nuking my diet or negatively influencing how I felt the next morning. There were no negative effects with these wines.

There is a feel good about this version of wine, FitVine. I am glad it exists and that it gives me a choice, just like lite beer does. I look forward to the quality of these wines improving as well as the variety.

If you are into enjoying life and being mindful at the same time, these FitVine wines can offer a good choice for living a healthy lifestyle.

Need a right-sized wine glass to go along with your wine? Try out the Livliga Aveq wine glasses that are artist designed and have discrete fill lines!

Monday, July 24, 2017

Sign of a Healthy Lifestyle--lots of water in the refrigerator


Friday, July 21, 2017

Oprah’s “Maya’s Smothered Chicken” with a Livliga Twist!

Oprah's Maya's Smothered Chicken Recipe
An Update Oprah Recipe with a Livliga Twist!

 It has been a fun journey to read from and discover recipes in Oprah’s first cookbook Food, Health and Happiness. It is an interesting insight into her life, loves and life long weight challenges. I relate. Most of us do. 

What surprised me about some of her recipes was how caloric they were and how much fat, flour and overall carbs there were in them. For a general cookbook I would totally get it but for one that is specifically tailored to the Weight Watchers community, I was a little more than surprised. Additionally, with so many people experiencing specialized diets like gluten free, dairy free, low carb, vegetarian, Paleo or Whole30, I thought there might be more sensitivity towards them in her range of recipes. This insight into her recipes gave me a challenge. I decided to pick a few and see how I might be able to stay true to the flavor, texture, smell and overall yumminess while making them more relevant to people’s needs today. My Oprah recipe updates focus on being Calorie Sensitive, Gluten Free, Low Carb, Whole30 and Paleo compliant, mainly Dairy Free and as Easy as possible to make. Below is one such offering—

Oprah’s “Maya’s Smothered Chicken” with a Livliga Twist

8 chicken thighs, skin on and bone in
2 lemons, juiced
¼ cup clarified butter
¼ cup olive oil
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
1 cup almond flour (not meal)
2 medium onions, sliced and rings separated
1 pound mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
1 clove garlic, minced
2 ¼ cups chicken stock, low sodium and with no added sugar (i.e., Imagine)
¼ cup arrowroot flour

Oprah Recipes

1.     Wash chicken and place it in a sealable bag with the lemon juice and enough water to coat. Marinate for at least 20 minutes, turning every couple of minutes. Can be marinated longer in the refrigerator, up to an hour.
2.     Remove chicken from marinade and pat dry. Season with Salt and Pepper.
3.     In shallow bowl place the almond flour and dredge chicken, coating lightly.
4.     Place coated chicken in hot skillet with the heated butter and oil. Use a skillet that can hold all eight thighs.
5.     Cook chicken until browned on both sides, about 5 minutes per side. Transfer to a large plate or platter.
6.     Add the onions, garlic and mushrooms to the liquid left in the skillet. Cook for 5 – 10 minutes until onions are softened and translucent. Stir constantly scraping loose anything that starts to stick on the sides or bottom. When it seems too dry in the pan add up to a ¼ cup of chicken stock to avoid any burning.
7.     Return chicken to the pan and add the remainder of the chicken stock. Bake in a preheated oven at 375° for 25 – 30 minutes until the chicken is cooked thoroughly.
8.     Remove the skillet from the oven. Add the arrowroot  roux (see Tip) and whisk into the mixture to thickened the liquid and make it more gravy like. Serve up hot. Eat mindfully.

Oprah's Chicken recipes

 Serves: 8. Serving size: 1 chicken thigh with ½ cup vegetables with sauce. Calories: 348 (calories for Oprah’s original recipe: 536—that’s 188 calorie improvement!).

Make it a meal:
Serve over ½ cup roasted cauliflower“rice” crumbles (35 calories) and as your vegetable, serve up 1 cup steamed green beans with 1 teaspoon of lemon zest (31 calories). Total calories for the meal: 414 (making it a meal is still less calories than Oprah’s original recipe AND more visually appealing!).

Cauliflower Rice Recipe

Make sure to only add the arrowroot flour to the liquid in the skillet at the very end when you are ready to serve up. Add some juice from the pan, about ¼ cup, to a small bowl, carefully adding the arrowroot and whisk until blended, then add it to the skillet to avoid clumps.


Monday, July 17, 2017

Sign of a Healthy Lifestyle--Your Very Own Kayak


Friday, July 14, 2017

What is this “Whole30” thing?

whole 30 program
I don’t know about you but more and more of my friends have been talking about the “Whole30.” When it started showing up on my Facebook feed I thought it was time to find out what this conversation is all about. The first thing I learned is that people call it a variety of terms like “program”, “lifestyle” and “diet.” Here is the definition on the Whole30 website:

The Whole30 is a 30-day diet that emphasizes whole foods and during which participants eliminate sugar, alcohol, grains, legumes, soy, and dairy from their diets.

It is a way of eating that was co-created by Melissa Hartwig and Dallas Hartwig. A really healthy way of eating. It takes us back to whole foods, hence the “whole” in Whole30. What I find most interesting about this diet is that, unlike any other diet I have seen, it eliminates grains and legumes. I totally get removing highly processed and highly refined foods from our diets but I have not seen a diet that eliminates whole grains and legumes. Admittedly they are made up of carbohydrates too but unlike refined sugars that are simple carbohydrates, grains and legumes are complex carbohydrates so they take more energy to break down giving us longer lasting energy.

In researching Whole30 I found there is much controversy about this program. There are those that condemn the diet as being restrictive and misleading regarding whole grains and legumes. Then there are those who wholeheartedly support the diet emphasizing that grains and legumes are hard to digest and therefore too hard on our bodies to eat. From my point of view I do not see the harm in eliminating grains and legumes for 30 days, particularly with the goal of rerouting the brain to not be triggered by too many sugars/carbohydrates in our bodies, which has now become an addiction. On the other hand vilifying grains and legumes doesn’t make sense to me. They are a healthy source of carbohydrates and provide much needed vitamins and minerals not always found in other food. It is not logical to me to lump these in along with the gluten free issue. In what I read it seems people are confusing the two or at least combining them. They are not at all the same and the conversation needs to separate them.

What is wonderful about this diet is that it is all about eating fresh, whole foods low in carbohydrates. In looking over the menus and recipes provided by FREE downloads made available through Whole30, they also combine interesting ingredients and spices so the meals are tasty and visually appealing. Livliga believes strongly that it is important to have delicious foods served in an attractive manner to make meals filling and fully satisfying. Unlike this diet, however, we do believe you should always be mindful of the amounts you are eating.

When you look at other sources for recipe inspiration it is actually easy to find Whole30 compliant ones. I went through many of my recipes on my blog and found many of my own recipes that where already Whole30 easy. The main thing to remember is to eliminate legumes, grains and soy but also anything with peanuts or dairy. Rule exceptions include eggs, clarified butter, which are considered in the dairy category, as well as Green beans, sugar snap peas, and snow peas, that would normally be considered legumes. It is easy to substitute with Whole30 approved foods in just about any recipe you like so it is not as limiting as you might think.

From my admittedly focused view as someone well aware of the triggers and addictive nature of carbs…this program is really all about the limiting of carb intake. I see this as a good thing. In the culture and times we live in, we need all the help we can get to restructure our diet and overcome our sugar addiction.

Need some right-sized dishware to complement your new healthy lifestyle? Discover Livliga!

right-sized dishwater

Monday, July 10, 2017

Sign of a Healthy Lifestyle--Convertible in the Garage


Friday, July 7, 2017

Ten Quick Tips for Bariatric Friendly Mindful Eating

bariatric friendly recipes

The key to mindful eating is being fully present when you eat. It is about eating with intention and attention. This allows you to be aware of your food environment and the food you are eating. Being mindful also creates a positive space for you to eat right-sized healthy foods, enjoy the process, and feel satisfied at the end of the meal.

Since we have spent most of our lives grazing when we eat, not paying attention to what we eat or the amounts we eat, it is a journey to become fully mindful and present when we eat. This is particularly true in the bariatric community. Thinking ahead about how to support ourselves in making a manageable space for being mindful when we eat helps us prepare to be present.

mindful eating recipes

  Below are Ten Quick Tips for Bariatric Friendly Mindful Eating:
  1.  Right size your food environment, starting with your dishes 
  2.  Eliminate any distractions at mealtime—turn off the TV
  3. Make time for your meal, don’t rush it, slow down and enjoy
  4. Sit down to eat
  5. Create an attractive environment to eat that makes your feel good as you eat. Feast your eyes as well as your stomach
  6. Chew slowly to allow you to savor the flavors
  7. Put your cutlery down between bites to help you slow down and appreciate your meal
  8. Plan out when you eat and what you eat for each day. Think about making your meals colorful and interesting. Vary your menus. 
  9. Measure your food. Busy week? Prepare your recipes and pre-measure multiple meals. This helps you become effortlessly mindful
  10. At the end of the meal take a moment to be aware of how you feel both physically and emotionally. Become aware of what it feels like to feel full and satisfied.

mindful eating

There are many benefits to becoming mindful. First and foremost it helps us succeed long term in living a healthy lifestyle. It assists us in changing our relationship with food. Other benefits for the bariatric community are:

    •    Knowing when you are full sooner
    •    Feeling satisfied with less food
    •    Reduces chances of over-eating
    •    Improved digestion


Enjoy! And Live Vibrant!

Monday, July 3, 2017

Sign of a Healthy Lifestyle--A Grill


Friday, June 30, 2017

Summery Egg Salad

Summery egg salad recipe

There are so many ways to create a tasty egg salad. There is no one way to prepare it. This makes it a very versatile dish that can be eaten any time of year and for whatever mood you are in. And now that we know eggs are no longer “bad” for us, creating a meal with eggs can not only be easy but also economical. I also love that it can be prepared ahead of time and pulled out of the refrigerator when you don’t feel like cooking, when you need a meal that accommodates a flexible schedule, and that makes for a quick clean up.

Egg salad can be eaten with crackers, as a sandwich with alfalfa sprouts and avocado or on a bed of lettuce. One of my favorite ways to eat egg salad is to slice a tomato in 6ths, from top to bottom, without cutting all the way through the base, so the tomato opens like a flower. Then I put my ½ cup of egg salad in the middle, surround it with baby spinach and sprinkle the top with a pinch of paprika. It looks so appealing and takes no time at all to prepare.  It makes for a very satisfying meal both visually and physically.

Below is a new recipe that is bright, light and feels like summer.

summery egg salad

Summery Egg Salad

6 hard boiled eggs, peeled and chopped
½ teaspoon lemon zest
1 teaspoon lemon juice
½ cup celery, finely chopped
cup nonfat Greek yogurt, plain
cup light mayonnaise
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
¼ teaspoon garlic salt
teaspoon ground pepper
½ fresh dill, coarsely chopped

1.     Mix all ingredients together in a bowl.
2.     Stir until blended.
3.     Store in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

Serves: 4. Calories per serving:153.

·      For easy peeling of your hard boiled eggs check out this blog on the Negg
·      For another healthy and classic egg salad recipe go to this blog of mine