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Fire up the 4th


Article posted by Sherri Sacconaghi, July 1st, 2013



Eating food for weight loss does not mean bland and boring. In fact, adding some spice to your menu not only adds flavor, it can also give your metabolism an extra boost for maximum burn.


So this Fourth of July as you fire up that grill, throw on your favorite protein and whip up your world famous side dishes, throw on a little heat and burn baby burn.


Here are my top three picks for spicing up any meal.


  • Chili Powder: Canadian researchers have discovered that spicing up a fatty meal with chili powder significantly increases levels of diet-induced thermogenesis. (the heat your body generates during digestion…i.e., calorie burn). They've also found that chili can actually help reduce your appetite.


  • Turmeric : The liver is an important fat burning organ. Turmeric can enhance the detoxification of the liver and protect cells from damage done from trying to digest the less than healthy fare we put in our bodies. It also suppresses the growth of fat tissue.



  • Mustard Seed. A tiny mustard seed contains selenium, a weight loss aid, and the amino acid tryptophan, which makes us feel happy and satisfied. There are omega-3 fatty acids in mustard, as well as a good number of essential minerals our bodies need. ( so yep, even the mustard you throw on a hot dog this weekend will count.)

Mix the three together and use it on grilled meat and seafood for a delicious BBQ rub. Or try this delicious recipe.

Shrimp With Turmeric and Mustard Seeds

Adapted from: Flavoring with Spices



pound medium size raw shrimps (about 16)


teaspoon turmeric


teaspoon chili powder


tablespoons sunflower oil


teaspoon mustard seeds (black or yellow)


garlic cloves, crushed


fresh hot green chili, finely chopped


tablespoon torn fresh cilantro leaves

teaspoon coarse sea salt (or to taste)


Peel the shrimp, but leave the tail fin intact. Place the shrimp in a bowl. Mix the turmeric and chili powder together, sprinkle over the shrimp, toss well with your hands ensuring all the shrimp is coated with the rub.

Heat oil in a large skillet and, when very hot, add the mustard seeds. When the seeds start popping (about a minute or so), add the crushed garlic and saute until golden, (about two minutes), then stir in the chopped green chili.

Add the shrimp and saute over high heat for about three-four minutes until they become opaque. (Ensure the pan is not overcrowded and all the shrimp lay comfortably on the pan—this will help cook the shrimp evenly). Remove immediately to a serving plate—do not overcook. Sprinkle with coarse salt and the chopped fresh cilantro. . Serve with quinoa or rice.

Who knew fat burning could taste so good. Have a happy safe and spicy 4th of July.



Sherri Sacconaghi, AADP, NASM-CPT

Certified Health Coach



"Inspiring you Towards a Healthy Body and a Joyful Life".

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