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Busy lifestyle? Healthy tips and take-out alternative

Published: 9:13 am CDT, June 12, 2012

When life gets busy, it’s helpful to have “go to” ways to make sure heart health doesn’t fall to the bottom of the to do list.

A couple ways I aim to stay on track include:

  • I make sure to schedule my workouts in the morning – only if I have an early morning meeting can I come up with a reason to skip a workout when it is 6 a.m. Additionally, I’ll schedule yoga or pilates meet-ups with friends. Sometimes just knowing I have someone waiting for me – even if just for a quick hi before or after a class – is all I need to get me away from my desk at the end of a day.
  • Prepare healthy breakfasts and lunches at the beginning of the week. It’s easy to measure smoothie or juice ingredients, and place them in containers so they are ready to pour into the blender for final prep in the morning. I often spend Sunday evenings making kale, apple, and chickpea salads, roasted red peppers and quinoa, and spinach salads with a full spectrum of colorful vegetables that I pack into single-serving containers so they are ready to grab out of the refrigerator right before leaving the house each morning.

Dinners are where I often need a little added push. After a long day, sometimes I just want to make it easy and order take-out. Just last week, I found myself incredibly busy at the office, in the midst of a move, and looking at a calendar filled with travel. I knew I needed to come up with a plan for dinner but the local Thai restaurant sounded so good. I decided to find a way to eat healthy while curbing my craving. I stumbled upon the Sweet and Nutty Stir-Fry . This dish is low in saturated fat and sodium while at the same time high in terms of flavor and crunch.  Better yet, the recipe is quick – in less than 30 minutes you’ll have a delicious dinner on the table.

**As mentioned, I am in the midst of a move, so photos are limited in this post as my camera remains packed and I had to use the camera on my phone.

First, prepare all ingredients. One substitution I made: replacing the sugar called for in the recipe with local honey.

Next, cook the pasta. While the recipe calls for adding curry powder to the water, do not let that deter you from making this recipe.  This recipe has a lot of flavor and you easily could skip this step.

While the pasta is cooking, prepare the orange sauce. I really wanted a bit of spice, so I added in extra crushed red pepper.

 

In a large skillet, over medium-high heat, cook the onion for one minute. Then add in the rest of your vegetables.

Cook, stirring frequently, until just tender-crisp.

Then, divide the pasta into 4 servings, top with the vegetables and sauce, and sprinkle with peanuts.

Note: Leftovers easily can be saved and reheated the next day. If you plan to save some of the stir-fry for later, you may wish to hold off on adding the peanuts until you are ready to sit down and eat.

How do you make sure you stay on track with heart healthy habits? Feel free to comment and share ideas and tips.

 

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