Eat Smart · Feel Great

Are Food Subscriptions the Solution College Students have been waiting for?

I speak for many college students when I say that eating healthy in college is hard. There are constant fatty temptations between the french fries in the dining hall, the stock of ramen noodles you keep under your bed, or the late night sliders in Kimmel.

Unfortunately, I’m a college senior so it’s pretty much too late to change my ways. However, for those of you that have extra time at Syracuse, there is a solution to this problem. Food box subscriptions have recently become more popular because they not only provide the healthy food that people are looking for, but they also provide convenience.

Interested? Here are some of the top ranked food box subscriptions:

  1. Healthy Surprise

This subscription box provides snacks that are all natural, gluten free, GMO free, soy free, corn free, and wheat free. There are various sizes of boxes that differ in price, but reviews have said that all of the boxes are great value. Customers who tend to like this box the most are those who avoid certain foods due to allergies or intolerances.

  1. Nature Box

The Nature Box provides convenient snack bags that lack artificial ingredients, trans fats, or high-fructose corn syrup. When choosing the box, the customer is able to customize it based off of dietary needs and desires. Reviews of this box have said that one of the best parts of this product is that it comes in convenient, re-sealable snack bags.

  1. Bestowed

The Bestowed subscription box not only provides healthy snacks and beverages, but also throws in lifestyle items such as lotions and lip balms. This product is interesting because customers get a wide range of items within the box, instead of only healthy snacks. Many people who have reviewed this box like the combination of the two types of products, and highly recommend!

  1. Blue Apron

Looking for fresh ingredients and recipes that can create whole meals? Perhaps ideal if you live on south or off campus, this service is more than just a snack box. Blue Apron provides weekly specialty ingredients and creative ways to cook them. Reviews of this subscription have claimed that Blue Apron was reliably delivered, affordable, and included recipes that were easy to follow.

  1. Plated

This subscription is another type of food delivery box that provides an entire meal with recipes. Reviewers of this box feel that Plated’s food quality is very high, but the recipes might be for someone who is more comfortable in the kitchen. So, if you’re looking for a challenge, this might be the box for you! Plated also allows you to choose the amount of meals you want for the week, providing flexibility for customers.

  1. HelloFresh

Like boxes four and five, HelloFresh has a similar meal concept. What seems to set HelloFresh apart is that it is more family-oriented and provides discounts for four or more people. Customers who have this subscription box feel that it works well for people who are vegetarian and provides pretty good healthy ingredients.

While I have not personally tried any of these products, I look forward to trying one next year when I have my first real apartment. With these subscription boxes, there seems to be a product for just about everyone’s desires. If you’re interested in trying these out, I’d suggest reading these websites specifically to see what stands out to you and your food wishes. Also, if you’re concerned about the price, there are tons of discount codes that can cut your subscription boxes down so you can eat great and still live on a college budget! (Ahem, YouTube is littered with discount codes in particular for Nature Box and Blue Apron!) Happy, healthy eating!

 

By Courtney Rosser

Image courtesy of Harvard Business School

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How to Make a Delicious Fruit Smoothie Bowl

With increased studying and late nights, there usually is an increase in unhealthy eating. While it’s okay to occasionally order Dominos to get your pizza fix, it’s not okay to order out every night of the week just because you’re not on your #springbreakdiet.

A smoothie bowl is something extremely simple to make, but it’s packed with great things for you! In between library sessions, this could be the healthy energy boost that will help you make it through another few hours of work.

To make a smoothie bowl, you have to add these ingredients into a blender:

  • 1 cup coconut water
  • ½ cup strawberries
  • 1 ½ cup spinach
  • ½ cup frozen pineapple chunks

ingredients

These ingredients are just what my roommates and myself like to use, but there are tons of variations. Feel free to substitute with your favorite fruits!

When the ingredients you added into the blender are completely mixed, take the contents and pour it into a bowl. The amount of ingredients that I provided makes enough for two smoothie bowls, so be aware that you’ll have more left over!

Finally, it’s time to put on some toppings to give it additional taste. In the picture shown below I used:

  • 1tbs unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1tbs chia seeds
  • 1tbs hemp seeds
  • Slivered strawberries

fruit smoothie

This was a meal that gave me servings of fruits and vegetables, while tasting great! Try it out and enjoy!

 

By Courtney Rosser

Eat Smart · Feel Great

5 Health Fixes

 

Seniors don’t usually live in dorms all four years, but when we do we master the ins-and-outs of the dining hall system. The pizza and French fries are obviously the best looking foods in there, but if you’re on a health-kick, don’t succumb to the grease just because the lettuce at the salad bar is soggy and black. There’s plenty of healthier options than what meets the eye.

A dining hall is like one massively stocked kitchen at your disposal. So, while the quality of the food hasn’t changed much, it’s time to get smarter with using the supplies in front of you. Here are five hacks for eating healthier in the cafeteria.

Overcooked veggies? Grab some raw vegetables from the salad bar or the stir-fry section and have the staff either sauté or steam them. You’ll never get bored of eating the same thing because they always have a wide variety to choose from like broccoli, green peppers, and mushrooms. Mix in some teriyaki sauce for added taste!

 

Undercooked rice? Get steamed cauliflower and mash it together with a fork until it’s the same consistency as rice. Cauliflower is anti-inflammatory, rich in vitamins and fiber, and only 29 calories per cup. This gives you the room to eat more without the bloated and guilty feeling you’d get from a smaller portion of rice.

 

Craving avocado? Probably. So, next time you’re at one of the campus markets, buy a ripe avocado and bring it into the dining hall. This fruit provides the good kind of fat that helps lower cholesterol, reduces heart disease, and increases fiber intake. For breakfast, make avocado toast and top it with a juicy sunny-side up egg. For dinner, slice and toss it in with your quinoa and fish.

 

Nothing to eat? A chicken quesadilla is always the answer. It’s simple, filling and delicious, but the chicken breast at the deli bar looks like rubber. Ask the staff to make an extra-cheesy cheese quesadilla. Then take chicken breast from the hot dog section and cut it into strips. Put the best pieces into your tortilla!

 

Bland-tasting food? Add hot sauce to everything. Hot sauce will boost the flavor level of any meal and is a lot healthier than the other saucy alternatives. Its key ingredient is capsaicin, which speeds up fat burning, fights infections and might even make you live longer. The dining halls never run out, but just in case keep it in your bag like Beyoncé does.

 

Stop looking at these cafeterias with a negative attitude. Instead, look at each trip like a new opportunity to get creative with your food and to eat better than anyone else in there. You’ve got 99 problems, but eating healthy in the dining halls ain’t one anymore.

 

By Mariah Kulak

Eat Smart · Feel Great

“Healthy” Snacks that Could Be Making You Fat

As midterms approach, you are probably running around aimlessly, trying to fit in as many study hours, papers, coffee dates, and workouts as possible. With little time to do it all, it’s easy and efficient to grab a snack instead of a meal whenever free time pops up. In an effort to stay fit, and stay healthy, it’s important to snack smart and focus on what you are actually snacking on. Here are some snacks that are believed to be “healthy” but could be doing your diet more harm than good.

Veggie Chips
Though veggie chips claim to be loaded with nutrients and packed with as many as three servings of vegetables, they are often made up of potato starch and corn flour, which are two ingredients that make you more likely to snack between meals. Don’t be fooled by the “veggie” coloring on the chips, which is usually just food dye added during production. For a real healthy snack, you are better off making your own homemade “veggie” chips with real veggies like kale, broccoli, or Brussel sprouts by slicing, sprinkling with salt, and baking for about 10-15 minutes.

Bottled “Green” Juices
While it is nice to think you are being super healthy by “drinking your greens,” green juices are often packed with tons of sugar, which make it more like eating a Snickers bar than drinking a simple smoothie.  All that sugar is more likely to make you “crash” later in the day, and also make you crave junk food more. Try flavored or sparkling water if you are looking for a sweeter, very low-calorie alternative.

Yogurt Covered Pretzels
A sweet ‘n salty treat that seems pretty healthy, yogurt-covered pretzels, are one of the most deceiving foods that people think is healthy, but really does more damage than good to your body.  Pretzels are never an A+ snack, as they are loaded with sodium and complex carbohydrates, and when covered in “yogurt” (which in this case is often a combination of sugar and palm kernel oil) you have a snack high in sugar, fat, and carbs, three things that are never good. For a healthier alternative, opt for low-sugar kettle corn or a square of dark chocolate.

Sports Drinks
Sports drinks claim to refuel and reboost your body, but is that really true? More often than not, sports drinks are laden with corn syrups, tons of sugar, and people justify drinking them by arguing that they are key to rehydration and reenergizing one’s body after hard work or exercise. However, more often than not,  you don’t need to refuel your electrolytes with sports drinks unless you’ve had long, grueling workouts. So, unless you’re running a marathon soon, you should back off on the PowerAde unless it’s absolutely necessary.

Protein Bars
Protein bars are a tricky snack. Something with the word “protein” in it surely must be good for you, right? Wrong. Protein bars are simply a healthier name for the candy coated, sugar laden, sweet snack bars they truly are. So while they seem to be good for you, the only thing they add to your diet is sugar, syrups, and artificial sweeteners. You are better off making a homemade granola mix at home or packing a simple snack of banana and yogurt instead of grabbing one of those when you are on the run.

 

By, Annie O’Sullivan

Eat Smart · Feel Great

Foods to Maximize Your Workout

You should never exercise on an empty stomach, and sometimes it’s difficult to decide what to eat pre- and post-workout. Fear not, What the Health has broken down the best foods to eat when exercising.

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Before You Workout

  1. Bananas are an excellent food to eat before you work out. They have fast-acting carbohydrates that provide you with fuel during your entire workout. The potassium in bananas also helps prevent muscle cramps mid-workout. There is nothing worse than getting a stomach cramp while running on the treadmill!
  2. Another great food to eat before you head to the gym are oats. They can be in the form of oatmeal, granola, or combined with other ingredients for fun oat recipes. Oats are loaded with fiber which help release carbohydrates into your bloodstream, providing fuel to last you throughout your entire workout.
  3. Surprisingly, caffeine can be an effective pre-workout food. Caffeine can work to slow muscle fatigue and increase how much fat you burn.
  4. Fruit smoothies are an excellent way to get ready for a workout. They are high in protein, can be digested very quickly, and contain both simple and complex carbohydrates. The simple carbohydrates will activate in the first 15 or 20 minutes of your workout, and then the complex carbohydrates will kick in around the 30-minute mark.
  5. Chickpeas have 10 grams of protein, 30 grams of carbs, and about 9 grams of fiber to help make your work out easy peasy (pun intended).
  6. Unlike egg yolks, egg whites provide you with no fat and 4 grams of protein. The yolk of the egg contains lots of fat, and is metabolized slowly so it will make you feel sluggish. Ditch the egg yolk and just stick with the egg white!
  7. Greek yogurt is a great alternative to regular yogurt because it contains less sugar but more protein.

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After you Workout

  1. Avocados are a great post-workout food because they have good fat, not bad fat. This good fat helps repair muscles after a workout. Avocadoes also are high in Vitamin B, which speed up your metabolism.
  2. Instead of water after a tough workout, try chocolate milk. Chocolate milk helps restore muscle glycogen and rehydrates you just as much as Gatorade. It is high in carbs and protein, and you will also be getting calcium—added bonus!
  3. Another drink to try once you get home from the gym is green tea. Green tea can give you a much-needed energy boost after the gym and also has great fat-burning compounds.
  4. Quinoa is the best way to get your carbs, and a great alternative to brown rice. It has more protein and fiber than brown rice, and is also so much easier and quicker to prepare!
  5. A great fish to try after you work out is salmon. It is high in protein and also omega-3 fatty acids, which help to rebuild muscle post-workout.
  6. One of the best fruits to eat after a workout is kiwi. Kiwi contains lots of vitamin C and potassium packed into one small serving. They also contain antioxidants, which help reduce muscle soreness. Another tip to make the most out of your kiwi: eat the skin! It has more nutrients.
  7. Another helpful fruit to eat after you work out are blueberries. They are packed full of antioxidants, and studies show that they can trip your rate of recovery after a hard workout!

 

By Annie Kelly

Eat Smart · Feel Great

How to Cope with Neophobia in College

Generally, incoming college freshmen have difficulty adjusting to the dinning hall meals provided by Syracuse University. Now, imagine if you are a student who suffers from food neophobia and has a limited menu to begin with. Many people suffer from neophobia, an eating disorder that causes you to be afraid of new foods. This disorder can lead to malnutrition, and as a result, affect your daily functioning. Someone with neophobia can have panic attacks or be so repulsed by the new food that he or she will throw up.

Syracuse University sophomore Hailey New has suffered from neophobia since she was a child. When asked about the difficulties that accompany neophobia, she described how it would often cause problems at the dinner table.

“I had a set menu of meals I would eat as a kid and if [my parents] made something different, I would refuse to eat dinner that night. I would only eat chicken noodle soup, no other kind of soup. And peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, but only if it was a certain brand of jam, I wouldn’t eat other jams. Gosh I was an annoying kid,” she said humorously. However, she had no idea that 25 percent of children and many adults suffer from neophobia. Many of those people go to the website pickyeatingadults.com to share their experiences with the disorder. According to an article ABC News wrote in 2010, the website has 7,000 members.

During her freshman year, Hailey shared her struggle with the dinning halls. “I lost 15 pounds when I first got to Sadler because I would only eat the green grapes and cereal they had. Food has to look and smell good to me, and it was so different so I said nope not eating any of this. They were all new brands of food too, that bothers me a lot.”

This can be a real nuisance when being away at college, so if you are a student or just anyone suffering from neophobia, here are some ways to ease your way through the difficulties.

  1. One at a time
    Don’t bombard yourself with new foods, because then you’ll just be freaked out. If you have something new that you want to try just try that and take it one food at a time.
  2. Try not to get frustrated
    Again, stay calm, because you don’t want to freak out and hate everything.
  3. Know that some foods will be easier than others
    Sweet or salty foods are best for trying new foods because they’re less sour and bitter.
  4. Sauces can sometimes help
    Putting a complementary dressing on it never hurts. Sometimes the food just needs a little extra flavoring added to it in order to be just right. However, that may cause you to become dependent on that flavoring in order to like the food.

 

By Destiny Reyes

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6 Ingredients Essential for Exam Week

Did you know our brains need a constant supply of glucose to function correctly? The glucose we need for better brain function, mood, and memory should come from good foods. With finals coming in hot, prepare your brain to the max by adding theses extra six foods into your meals this week!

  1. Spinach. This ingredient can prevent dementia, aging, and damage to your DNA. These leafy green veggies are also a good source of foliate and vitamin E.
  2. Avocado. These are one of the best source of omega 3 and omega 6 needed for a healthy body. Avocados will help to increase blood flow to brain and lower cholesterol. Added bonus, they have vitamin K!
  3. Dark Chocolate. Satisfy your sweet tooth with a treat that will improve cognitive function and memory. Consuming this delicious cocoa will also improve mood, and it is packed with antioxidants.
  4. Nuts. Almonds and walnuts especially are good for healthy nervous systems and brain function. They have B6 and vitamin E to protect your brain for the long run.
  5. Quinoa. This complex carbohydrate will keep you full while you test and is great for keeping the blood oxygenated. Quinoa is also a great source of iron and vitamin B. Plus its gluten free!
  6. Broccoli. This awesome veggie is a superfood for the whole body! It is rich in calcium, vitamin C, B, and lots of iron. Eating broccoli will also decrease your chances of catching any viruses during your finals week.

Good luck with all your finals, and don’t forget to feed your brain! Food for thought: “What you feed your mind determines your appetite.” –Tom Ziglar

By Sydney Hughes

Eat Smart · Feel Great

Not Your Average Avocado Recipes

Not that there is anything wrong with avocado toast (in fact it’s my personal favorite breakfast), but there are countless other ways to use avocado! This includes not only unique recipes, but beauty applications as well.

 

Food

Avocado Fries

  • Slice up your avocados into your desired shape of “fry,” dip in egg, roll in breadcrumbs, and bake at 400 degrees! So simple yet so good.

Avocado Dressing

  • Blend up a serving of avocado in the food processor with some garlic, balsamic vinegar, and salt and pepper. A healthy, homemade alternative to those high-calorie, fattening dressings that we see at the grocery store.

Avocado Cookies

  • These are incredible, AND there’s a vegan option. That is all.

 

Beauty

You may be reluctant to stick chunks of avocado in your hair, but before you get judgmental and run the other way screaming, take a look at your hair products. More than likely, there’s several chemicals listed under the ingredients section that you can barely pronounce, let alone have any clue what they are. Avocado sounding better now? Using natural remedies is an awesome way to rejuvenate and change things up. Plus, your hair will feel incredible—I promise.

Moisturizing Avocado Hair Mask

  • This is amazing for when your hair is feeling dry and dull. Blend together half an avocado, one large egg, one tablespoon of honey, and a few drops of an essential oil (mint or rosemary works wonders AND helps hair grow—double win.) Apply it to you hair and put a shower cap or plastic wrap over it. Let it sit for 15-20 minutes and rinse out with warm water. Finish with your normal shampoo and conditioner routine.

Honey Avocado Face Mask

  • Help combat dry winter skin with this nourishing face mask!

Avocado Pit Face Mask?

  • That’s right. That part of the avocado that you have been neglecting and throwing out for years? Turns out, the pit of an avocado contains calcium, magnesium, and potassium. You can save your avocado pits, dry them out, and then grind them up to use as an exfoliate in a face mask. P.S., You can blend them into your smoothies as well…if your brave enough that is.

 

So if you aren’t sick of avocados by the end of this article, go ahead and pick some up at your local store and enjoy!

 

By Sarah Kinzler

Eat Smart

9 Foods to Strengthen Your Immune System

With cold and flu season quickly approaching, we need to do everything in our power to stay healthy. Here are 10 foods that will help boost your immune system and help you survive when your roommate and friends inevitably start coughing up a storm.

  1. Citrus

Vitamin C is essential for your health and can be found in citrus fruits. It helps produce more white blood cells, which fight off infections as well as helping you fight an illness once you have gotten sick. So try to eat about one citrus fruit a day or taking vitamin C to help prevent the likelihood of getting sick.

  1. Red bell Peppers

As well as citrus fruits, red bell peppers also have a lot of vitamin C. Red bell peppers actually have twice the amount of vitamin C that can be found in citrus fruits in addition to another nutrient called beta-carotene. Beta-carotene helps keep your eyes and skin healthy and is a provitamin to vitamin A.

  1. Broccoli

Broccoli is a super food packed with Vitamin A, C, E, and many antioxidants. It is one of the healthiest foods you could eat; however, the less it is cooked the more vitamins and nutrients you will get. Whenever available try to eat raw broccoli and it will prevent you from getting sick.

  1. Garlic

Garlic is a commonly used vegetable added for flavor in many foods and it also boosts your immune system. Garlic helps fight infections and has a large amount of sulfur containing compounds which boost your immunity. When cooking your next meal try to add garlic not only as a flavor, but also to boost your health.

  1. Ginger

Ginger is another popular flavor added to drinks, desserts, and other foods. Ginger helps your immunity because it has antioxidants and activates t-cells. T-cells are white blood cells that destroy other cells that are contaminated with a virus. Overall, ginger is a great flavor to add to your food because it builds up your body’s defense mechanism.

  1. Spinach

Spinach is another superfood packed with vitamin C, antioxidants, and beta-carotene. All these vitamins and minerals help fight infections and viruses. Similar to broccoli, you get the most of spinach’s nutrients when it is cooked less.

  1. Yogurt

Some yogurts have live and active cultures which prompt your immune system to fight off viruses and diseases. Yogurt also has vitamin D which helps fight off infection. When picking your yogurt, be careful and make sure that you pick one up with live and active cultures, because not all yogurts have them.

  1. Almonds

Almonds are also good for your immune system because they have vitamin E. Vitamin E is soluble in the presence of fat and since nuts have healthy fat, the vitamin E can be absorbed properly. Almonds give you the perfect immunity boost and vitamin E, which is harder to get otherwise.

  1. Green Tea

Green tea is full of antioxidants called flavonoids and epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG). By drinking green tea you will receive amino acid L-theanine which supports the production of  germ fighting compounds in t-cells.

In addition to all these foods remember to have a balanced diet with, fruits, vegetables, water, and sleep. This way you get all the necessary vitamins to boost your immunity and the rest needed to fight off sickness.

By Lina Sullivan

Eat Smart · Nutrition

Food Prep: 5 Tips to Make Life Easier

When it comes to establishing healthy habits and making smart food choices, often one of the biggest and most challenging barriers to overcome is access to healthy and convenient food. Sure, the walk to Marshall Street is never long and Wegmans is only a short ride away, but knowing what to buy and how to prepare healthy meals are sources of struggle for many. Here are five food prep tips to optimize the goods from your grocery haul.

  1. Make big batches of meals once a week. Commit one hour of your week to preparing big batches of meals that will last you the week. Roast a head or two of broccoli in the oven, grill a few chicken breasts, or prepare a casserole dish. Try this 5-Ingredient Pizza Spaghetti Pie for easy lunches or prepare this easy chicken sausage and spinach frittata for a no-hassle breakfast.
  2. Prepare your meals for the next day the night before.Scoop your coffee into its filter, transfer a slice of your big batch meal into a Tupperware, and throw some silverware into your lunch bag all before you go to sleep. In the morning, all you have to do is press brew and grab everything before you run out the door. These ten minutes the night prior will save you money and calories as opposed to grabbing fast food because you were unprepared.
  3. Make your freezer your best friend. Prep too much food? Transfer some of your meal into containers and toss them in the freezer to reheat at a later date. Worried your spinach will wilt before you get to use it? Toss it in the freezer and add it to green smoothies. Bananas starting to brown? Slice them into rounds and spread any nut butter on half of them, and then sandwich the remaining rounds on top. Put them in the freezer and voila, you have an instant snack if you’re craving something sweet.
  4. Invest in some nice Tupperware. Preferably the glass kind so you can safely microwave your meals. Choose a set that comes with big and small containers, and make sure you grab some tiny ones for on-the-go dressings!
  5. Always have protein prepped for quick grabs. Protein is the most satiating food group, so having some protein foods stocked in the fridge ensures you’ll always have a safe snack for when you’re hungry. Some examples include hard boiled eggs, rotisserie chicken, deli meat slices, plain Greek yogurt, or packaging a variety of nuts and seeds into baggies.

 

Need some more inspiration? Enlist some help from social media. Browse posts on Instagram using the hashtag #mealprep or search “meal prep” on Pinterest to see what other healthy food enthusiasts are doing!

By, Julia Kameisha

Eat Smart · Nutrition · Student Life

Cutting Out Cross Contact

For many students, the dining hall poses a harmful, and sometimes an even life-threatening risk. Imagine entering the dining hall, scanning all of the meal options available and not knowing one hundred percent if what you are serving yourself is safe. “Of course that grape jelly doesn’t contain gluten!” and “Why would you think that… Continue reading Cutting Out Cross Contact

Feel Great · Nutrition

Anything But Fish ‘N’ Chips: Breakfast Sandwich Heaven

Honesty hour: the UK has better food than people admit. Yes, there are some places where the culinary delights are a little unique, but hey, even America has tried to pass off some questionable foods in the past (I don’t feel the need to list specific things, but I think we all know that Mcdonald’s… Continue reading Anything But Fish ‘N’ Chips: Breakfast Sandwich Heaven

Blog · Eat Smart

Photo: Liz LaBeau Warm up a crisp fall day with one of these delicious cinnamon apple muffins, perfect for breakfast, or as a filling and satisfying snack, these muffins are a great option. Packed full of fiber and hearty oat bran, when this combination of apples and cinnamon spice hits your taste buds you won’t… Continue reading

Blog · Eat Smart

Avery’s Healthy Campus Eats: Marshall Street After Dark

Around 2 AM the other Thursday, I found myself on Marshall Street, seated at a table in Acropolis surrounded by pizza and cheese fries. At the time it seemed like the perfect thing to do. The next morning, however, my roommates asked despairingly, “why didn’t anyone stop me from eating that junk?!” That made me… Continue reading Avery’s Healthy Campus Eats: Marshall Street After Dark

Blog · Eat Smart

Season’s Greetings: Spaghetti Squash Recipe

Photo: spaghettisquash.org One of my favorite dinners is spaghetti and meatballs—comfort food at its best, and so delicious. Italian pasta dishes are great, but are not the healthiest choice for dinner day in and day out. I present you with a healthy spin on the traditional spaghetti and meatballs combo—spaghetti squash noodles. Directions Preheat oven… Continue reading Season’s Greetings: Spaghetti Squash Recipe