Saturday, April 24, 2010

Chocolate and the Bathing Suit Body

Everywhere I look I see some weight loss ad encouraging us all to get our fat, pale winter bodies in shape for the beach. Apparently after living under a rock for the last 8 months we are all going to spend our summer romping in the waves half naked.

And to be ready, we have to be so weak from hunger that romping will be impossible. But what the hell, I'll go with the fantasy. Have you seen any of the marketing for these? I wonder what took them so long? Of course, if these are a hit, we'll probably start seeing Cheerios in every flavor under the sun:

Love the "may reduce the risk of heart disease" message. The FDA is soooo going to pull the plug on that BS. I have to confess, I've always thought Cheerios were the most boring cereal on the face of the Earth. Their best use seems to be to give to small children who leave a trail of them in their grubby little wakes. So small children of the world - rejoice! These are WAY better than regular Cheerios! Yay!

But if you are an adult and you are eating cereal to be healthy - step away from the Cheerios and get thee some cereal with fiber! I'm not kidding - to me the whole point of eating cereal is to incorporate some fiber into my diet and Cheerios ain't doing it. They have 1 gram of fiber. Slap yourself if you are wasting your cereal quotient with this. I'd recommend Fiber One's frosted shredded wheat if you want something sweet (9 grams of fiber) or Fiber One's raisin bran clusters (11 grams of fiber). And I actually like both of these better than boring Cheerios - even the chocolate ones. zzzzzzzzz

And how about this? Chocolatey delight Special K:

And check this out - take the Special K Challenge (pretty much eating nothing but their products) and lose 6 pounds in two weeks! Please.

The first scoop I pulled out had zero chocolate chunks in it - and I did shake the box before scooping. I had to fish out some chocolate for the photo:

That's what the chunks look like - pretty big, huh?

Well - if you carefully divide up the chocolate chunks to make sure you get some in every bite, this is pretty good. It ads some zip to the second most bring cereal on the face of the earth. But again, I say - get some damn fiber! This also has 1 gram of fiber.

So bottom line - if you like really boring cereal made slightly less boring by the addition of some chocolate, these are for you! And while a better health choice than eating a sugary kid's cereal, I think you should eat a better tasting and better for you adult cereal if your top concern is your health. Also fiber is more filling if you're trying to lose weight.

Now here's something I was delighted to see! Chocolate Greek yogurt! Greek yogurt is even better for you than regular yogurt - it has more protein. For 110 calories, this little yogurt has 10 grams of protein:

And the best part? It tastes GREAT! Most chocolate yogurts I've had were either high in calories or not that great, but this one is perfect when you want a creamy chocolate fix. Now don't get me wrong, if you don't like yogurt, you won't like this - it's still yogurt. But it's a great chocolate yogurt - healthy AND good! Yay!

It also came in caramel:

I didn't like this one as much - I've found that caramel doesn't seem to translate so well into dairy treats. I don't like Skinny Cow's caramel ice cream bar either - they just taste kinda weird. Now I'm not talking about ice cream with a real caramel ribbon - that's a whole different matter! But these low fat caramel things aren't as good as you would expect. And I love caramel and yogurt (and ice cream - there isn't much I wouldn't do for ice cream), so you can take my word for it on this one.

See how creamy and chocolaty? Caramel on the left, chocolate on the right.

The takeaway? It's great to see some healthy food incorporating chocolate, but just know your goal. If you're eating cereal to be healthier - take a look at the nutrition panel and look for something with some fiber. If you just want something that tastes good - try some different things and see what you like best. Same for yogurt - if you don't like it, don't eat it. But if you're trying to be healthier or lose weight, finding a low-fat, low calorie alternative to ice cream is a must. Or just don't eat the whole carton! But who can do that? Gandhi?

And, what is probably the most important - don't worry about having the perfect bathing suit body - please. The most beautiful people at the beach are those who are having fun and are filled with joy and laughter. (And just maybe, chocolate!)


Kris, in New England said...

There is no such thing as a bathing suit body (whatever that is) that consumes chocolate.

Isn't gonna happen. And I'm OK with that. Chocolate is just too good.

Denise Ryan said...

Amen, Kris! You tell it, sistah!! I'm with you!!