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The Perfect Portion

  • Jenny Craig

    Understanding the Science of Weight Loss

    By Jenny Craig, in Eat Well,

    When it comes to losing weight, everyone hears that it takes movement and diet— but how much of each? This is where science comes into play. Understanding the science of weight loss is actually quite simple. We will be breaking down the science behind weight loss, easy lifestyle changes you can make, and how Jenny Craig’s scientific weight loss program is an effective way to help you get healthy.
    Diet for weight loss
    There’s a reason it’s important to moderate what you eat if you’re looking to lose weight. Eating healthy is one of the most important factors in helping aid in long-term weight loss. The reason dieting is so much more effective than exercise is because it takes a ton of activity to create a 400 to 600 calorie deficit through working out.1  Additionally, exercise can increase one’s appetite.2. 
    Activity for weight loss
    Increase activity or exercise and you’ll see changes over time. Your body can become more toned and leaner based on what type of physical activity you’re doing. The American College of Sports Medicine recommends moderate activity (brisk walking, swimming, aerobic dancing, strength training or running) five times a week for 60 minutes. This length of constant movement may be a lot for some people depending on their age, mobility and available time. It will also take a lot of activity alone to get to your weight loss goals, especially if you try to out-train your diet. This means that if you continue to eat foods that are high in calories, you’re setting yourself up for a slower weight loss journey.
    Lifestyle changes for weight loss
    There is a science to weight loss that goes beyond active movement throughout the week and eating healthy food. This science comes down to your lifestyle—genetics, how active you are, what you eat, what you do for work and many, many other factors. In order to have long-term success, you must not only change your diet, but you will need to make an overall lifestyle change.
    Here are scientific weight loss tips that you can consider changing, and how they impact your weight loss:
    Having a balanced amount of vegetables, fruit, lean proteins and whole grains allows you to fuel your body with nutrients that will energize you and keep you fuller longer. It’s also important to pay attention to portion size and calorie intake. By properly following portion guidelines, you can learn your body’s signals for when you are truly full or hungry to help keep off those pounds. Another simple change to make includes limiting going out to eat to less than 3 times a week.

    Hunger & Blood Sugar Levels
    Another thing to consider is how hunger affects you—are you actually hungry, or is it something else that is making you feel low? Consider HALT (hungry, angry, lonely, tired), a strategy that helps you check in with your body, will help you figure out how hunger affects your lifestyle and needs. From the National Weight Control Registry’s survey, those who kept their weight off didn’t skip breakfast and maintained consistent eating patterns, which led to more chances of not binging due to hunger. By snacking throughout the day it will help to control your blood sugar level to help keep you happy and full.3 Foods that are especially known to help regulate your blood sugar include berries, high-fiber foods, protein, and vegetables.4
    Physical Activity 
    Different activities or extending your active movement by 15-30 minutes each day can also help you move past plateaus and unwanted weight gain, which occur as your body gets used to the lifestyle changes and seems to stall in regard to weight loss. There are also emotional benefits to finding activities you enjoy, too. In the morning, it may be a great way to wake up and feel energized, while afternoon/evening activities may help with relieving stress from your day. 
    Part of the HALT strategy is recognizing when you are tired, as that can lead toward making quick food choices and overeating. For anyone ages 18 and older, The National Sleep Foundation recommends an average of 7-9 hours of sleep per night. If you find it difficult to fall asleep, we have a few tips for falling asleep.5
    Holding yourself accountable for your actions is part of life, and definitely a part of your weight loss journey. It’s easy when you can see the changes you’ve made and have found ways to measure your success, but there may be moments where you don’t feel motivated, or you end up feeling like you’re off track because you had a piece of cake at a potluck. This is why you must find ways to continue being inspired and motivated for when you have moments that you lapse into old habits. 
    Find your support system
    Having a strong support system, whether it’s a friend who also wants to lose weight or your family bringing vegetables to a gathering, makes all the difference. When you are able to openly discuss and celebrate your weight loss journey with others, you’re able to feel supported while being held accountable.
    While everyone has different variables in their body weight loss, the science behind it is clear: You are in control of your choices. By making healthier choices, you are able to create a path to weight loss that, while sometimes bumpy due to plateaus or life events, can lead to success. You can start your weight loss journey with Jenny Craig, where we’ve factored in chef-crafted food to create a menu that leaves you satisfied. Plus, our personal consultants provide support every step of the way.
    Call us at 866-706-4042 or visit any of our 500 locations in local neighborhoods near you to discover how we’ve factored science into our program to help you achieve your goals.
    2https://www.nytimes.com/2015/06/16/upshot/to-lose-weight-eating-less-is-far-more-important-than-exercising-more.html   3https://www.webmd.com/diabetes/features/diabetic-diet-6-foods-control-blood-sugar#1   4https://www.webmd.com/diabetes/features/diabetic-diet-6-foods-control-blood-sugar#1

  • Jenny Craig

    How to Avoid Holiday Weight Gain

    By Jenny Craig, in Live Life,

    The holidays are a time to spread good tidings and cheer with family and friends, which usually involve parties with tables full of presents, food and drinks to delight in. With all of the events between Thanksgiving and New Years, it can be easy to gain weight. Here are a few tips on how to avoid holiday weight gain and eat healthy during the holiday:
    Eat before the event. Showing up to the party already full allows you to focus on interacting with everyone—not just the treat table. Don't Skip Meals: You may be tempted to skip breakfast and "save" all of your calories for the big feast but you could be setting yourself up to overeat. Remember to have breakfast, lunch and a snack, and follow your menu plan for the day so that when dinner comes around, you won't be starving and more likely to overdo it. Plan for Social Situations: You can still enjoy social events while following your weight loss plan; it just takes some pre-planning. When going to a holiday party, offer to bring a vegetable platter so that you will have foods to munch on. If you are going out to eat, plan what you will eat ahead of time. Don’t stand by the food. It’s easy to get caught up in everyone’s excitement as they pile their plates high with goodies. Once you create your plate, step away from the table and socialize away from the food. Limit your alcohol intake. You can prevent holiday weight gain by not partaking in every holiday drink at every event. If the eggnog or spiked punchbowl of apple cider are calling your name, consider how much activity you have to do to work the calories off. For a half cup of low-fat eggnog with 1-½ ounces of rum, it will take about 20-30 minutes of ice skating to burn 250 calories! If you are going to have wine, try pouring it in a smaller glass to limit the portion. Enjoy desserts in moderation. Cookies, holiday lattes and pies, oh my! There seems to be a sugary treat everywhere you go. A small nonfat mocha latte with whip cream can be burned off with 15-20 minutes of running (which you can attempt as you run around holiday shopping), but you can also find other ways to enjoy holiday favorites. Look for recipes that take your holiday favorites and put a lighter spin on them, or stick to a bowl of fruit to satisfy your sweet tooth with natural sweetness. Control your portions. While you may think you can stop holiday weight gain by limiting the sweet treats and alcohol, that feeling of missing out may sneak up on you and have you binge on everything later. Don’t miss out on celebrating—instead, focus on your portions. Ask the host/hostess what items will be served at the party so you can create a mental game plan and stick to it! When in doubt, stock up on vegetables and lean proteins, then choose small bites of everything else so you get a sample to taste without over-indulging. Feel empowered to say “no.” It’s the season for giving, but you don’t need to give in to everyone telling you to eat and drink whatever you like because it’s the holidays. You can avoid holiday weight gain by committing to your game plan and being selective about what you decide to eat. If someone keeps telling you to try something you’re not interested in eating, like a whole piece of cake or another drink, you can follow our PRP—Polite, Reason, Polite—technique. But also, feel empowered to say “yes.” Moderation and portion are key, but you may have an event where you happen to grab an extra peppermint brownie square or got too excited over the gingerbread men. The important thing is to recognize this and plan for next time. Don’t stress or worry too much over it—it happened, it was delicious and now you have another moment to choose a healthier option that will help you feel festive, energized and revitalized to continue in the holiday cheer.  
    These tips can help you avoid holiday weight gain as long as you commit to them! There is so much joy beyond the food and drinks that can easily sweep you up in the holiday spirits! Whether you’re dashing through the snow or laughing all the way through your neighborhood while singing carols, we wish you good tidings as you celebrate your weight loss journey with friends and family.

  • Jenny Craig
    Starting something new is exciting. Whether it’s a new job, hobby or skill you want to integrate into your life, you want to ease yourself into the new thing you are learning and try to prepare yourself for what’s ahead.
    When embarking on a weight loss journey, you have to learn new habits that impact your lifestyle, which can be a huge change. Luckily, Jenny Craig makes sure you are well prepared for the journey ahead. Discover what you get, what you’ll do and how the Jenny Craig program works to help you with your weight loss goals.
    What do you get?
    When you join Jenny Craig, you’ll get a full week’s worth of delicious chef-crafted meals such as Roasted Turkey Medallions, Pepperoni Pizza and Chocolate Lava Cake. Our members love the food and we can’t blame them! We believe that weight loss shouldn’t be about cutting out certain foods. Your body needs a balance of carbohydrates, protein and healthy fat to receive the nutrients it needs to thrive and keep you energized throughout the day.
    You’ll also get the support and guidance of a dedicated personal consultant who will help you on your journey and stay accountable to your weight loss goals.
    In addition to your week of food and a personal consultant, you also receive a grocery list that highlights Fresh & Free Additions, which are vegetables that are low in starch but high in fiber and water content, which can help you stay fuller longer. This list also contains a section of limited foods, like low-sugar or sugar-free sweets, condiments and other Jenny Craig items that you can have up to 3 servings a day.
    What do you do?
    Once you become more acquainted with your consultant, they’ll help you establish your goals and what meal plan will work best for you. Afterwards, you’ll receive your Jenny Craig menu items. You’ll eat 6 times a day—breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks/dessert. Our meals include the perfect balance of carbohydrates, protein and healthy fats so that you can feel satisfied while slimming down along with learning new eating habits. You can also add variety to and bulk up your meals with our suggested pairings, like a salad at lunch or nonfat Greek yogurt at breakfast, so you can feel fuller longer.
    Following your menu plan allows you to control your cravings and have the support you need to stay on track. That being said, there may be an occasion where you have a lapse, encounter a situation where you may not have any menu items available or you’re already anticipating a family gathering where your favorite cake is always served. This is why we have you meet with your consultant once a week so you can check in, prepare and create a plan for these scenarios that will empower yourself to make healthy choices and stay focused on your goals.
    Does it work?
    The short answer is YES! Members following the program can expect to lose 1-2lbs per week. Our combination of dedicated support via a personal consultant and delicious food has earned us recognition by the Annals of Internal Medicine as being one of the most effective weight loss programs*. Just look at our members, who have shared their Success Stories with us and describe how our program has helped them achieve not only their weight loss goals, but a new mindset and lifestyle that helps them feel confident for anything coming their way.
     *Gudzune KA, Doshi RS, Mehta AK, Chaudhry ZW, Jacobs DK, Vakil RM, et al. Efficacy of Commercial Weight-Loss Programs: An Updated Systematic Review. Ann Intern Med. 2015;162:501-512. doi:10.7326/M14-2238

  • Sarah S – Jenny Craig

    A Healthy Diet for Men

    By Sarah S – Jenny Craig, in Eat Well,

    As caloric needs vary by age and gender, men and women have moderately different daily calorie needs and weight loss plans. Regardless of gender, it's critical to understand what a well-balanced diet looks like and how to create a diet plan for your body. This article breaks down a healthy diet for men including daily calorie requirements and tips around weight loss for men.
    Nutritional Needs for Men
    Since men are usually larger, they require additional amounts of calories and protein to fuel their bodies. It is recommended to avoid just eating one type of food-so try not to eat all fats, all protein, all carbs, etc., because the healthiest diet consists of a good balance of all of these.1
    The calorie requirements per pound for men can vary based on activity level. A person with a sedentary lifestyle should work toward about 13 calories per pound per day, and someone with vigorous calorie burning exercises may need to consume as many as 18 calories per pound. The average daily calorie intake for a 175-pound man with a moderate exercise routine is about 2,800 calories. While age, body weight, lifestyle and other factors, impact the number of calories needed, on average maintaining a healthy weight for males will require 2,300-2,500 or more calories per day for men. If losing weight is your goal, net calories need to be negative to create a calorie deficit, so you would need to exert more calories than you take in.2 Maintaining a calorie burning workout schedule and balancing your average calorie intake is important to keep in mind when setting goals and staying on track.
    As we know well, all calories are not created equal. You may be thinking that a healthy diet for men would consist of a great deal more protein than that of a woman’s healthy diet. However, this is not entirely true. About 20-30% of your diet should consist of protein, whether you are male or female. Of course, this adds up to more grams for males, but the ratio is the same as it is for women.
    In the same vein, carbohydrates should account for about 50-60% of your daily caloric intake. However, men typically require a little more fiber than women, so get your carbs through whole grains that are unprocessed and therefore high in fiber.3 Try to keep sugars less than 10% of your diet as sugar offers very little nutritional value.
    Fats should make up about 20-30% of your diet, or less if you are actively trying to lose weight. For men, Omega-3 fatty acids are an important source of fat to add to your diet as it can help support fat loss, improve heart health and reduce inflammation.4 Omega-3 acids are best found in fish, vegetables such as Brussel sprouts, spinach and kale. In addition, it is recommended to stay away from trans fats and minimize saturated fats to less than 10% of calories. There is such a thing as good and bad fats - make sure you’re eating enough of the good fats (avocados, nuts, fatty fish, etc.) and avoiding the bad ones.
    Healthful Eating For Men
    The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics offer a few guidelines for men and healthful eating:
    Try eating at least 2 cups of fruit and 2 1/2 cups of vegetables each day. This should come as no shock, but men should up the ante with their whole grain intake. At least half of your grain intake—if not more—should come from whole grains. Low-carb diets are very popular right now, but it's important to make sure you get enough healthy carbs so that you have the energy to exercise. Believe us, you can't survive on meat alone! Although a juicy steak might be tempting, it is not the most healthful protein on the market. To get a delicious source of protein that won't counteract with your weight loss goals, try eating two to three servings of fish per week. Eating less red meat, in general, is a good idea, as this can also help keep your blood pressure down. Fiber is important for both sexes—but men need even more of this healthy nutrient than women. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics recommends at least 38 grams of it per day.  
    Due to testosterone, men are more likely to gain weight around the middle—which is a warning sign for certain types of diseases. To prevent heart disease or diabetes, keeping your waistline below 40 inches is a good start.
    Importance of A Well-Balanced Diet
    As we mentioned earlier, the main thing to keep in mind is that a balanced diet will always be the healthiest. Men (and women) were designed to enjoy nutrients from a variety of sources, and unfortunately, too much of a good thing can turn into a bad thing when it comes to your diet.
    One common pitfall for men when trying to eat healthy is to amp up their protein consumption. While good in moderation, too much protein can have adverse impacts and can even make result in weight gain if you are not handling it correctly.5 We recommend varying your diet to avoid unnecessary weight gain. One easy tip is to ensure that your plate has as many colors on it as possible—a red apple paired with a chicken breast, and green vegetables, for instance. This will ensure you are not getting too much of anything.
    For breakfast, we love recipes that you can make on your own, such as omelets or scrambles with your favorite veggies inside. During work, stick to a salad or sandwich for a light lunch, and load up a little more for dinner with a lean protein and at least two servings of fruits and veggies. Additionally, you can enjoy your favorite snacks with healthy fats to keep you full until the next meal!
    Tips For Men’s Weight Loss & Staying Healthy
    If you find yourself falling a little more into the “dad bod” category than you’d like, there are some simple tips you can keep in mind to help you lose weight or maintain your current weight if you've reached your goal. Along with eating a balanced diet, an important tip is to make gradual changes and think of them as a lifestyle change rather than a fad diet or quick fix. Healthy weight loss and eating habits should continue for years—not bounce back and forth with your cravings. Tips for a healthy weight loss program for men:
    Set clear goals. This will help you understand what your plan is for—to cut weight, to increase stamina, to reach a certain milestone, etc. Keep your goals in mind when you’re tempted by something unhealthy. Drink more water! Drinking more water can lead to a plethora of health benefits—weight loss, higher energy, improved immune system, just to name a few. If you find yourself not drinking enough water, try these 10 tips to drink more water.  Portion control. There are many ways to do this, but one of the easiest is just to eat off slightly smaller plates. It sounds a little elementary, but it has been proven to work repeatedly. Meal Prep. Following a program like Jenny Craig is a great way to save you time, money and worry throughout the week. You will be able to have complete control over your food choices all at once, as well as portioning them out correctly and taking care of unhealthy snack cravings in advance. Do not skip breakfast. This is especially important for men on a higher calorie diet. Breakfast always helps you feel full and not snack between meals. Grab some protein-rich eggs, your lean meat of choice, and tons of delicious veggies. Or go the hearty route and enjoy some healthy whole grains in oatmeal or granola.  
    Overall, a healthy diet for a man is only moderately different than a healthy diet for a woman. Simply keep the ratios about the same and adjust to your areas of growth. At Jenny Craig, we put together a delicious, healthy planned menu tailored to accommodate an average intake of calories per day for men. We offer over 100 foods that will never have you feeling like you’re missing out. Contact Jenny Craig for your free appointment today to get the results you want and learn more about our weight loss program!
    3http://www.webmd.com/diet/guide/fiber-how-much-do-you-need 4http://www.umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/supplement/omega3-fatty-acids

  • Jenny Craig

    What people notice when you lose weight

    By Jenny Craig, in Inspiration,

    You were the first to see the number on the scale dropping, the way your jeans began gaping around the waistline, and now your new healthy lifestyle is starting to pay off, because you feel an uptick in your energy and others are catching on to your newfound confidence.  The compliments of “you look great!” are flying, but there is more behind those acclaims than just looks. Here are three things people really notice when you lose weight.  
    Pep in Your Step
    You’ll notice your energy level is at an all-time high and you’re ready to take on the world. You have no trouble bouncing out of bed and getting stuff done, thanks to your recent weight loss. Regular physical activity (even a daily walk) increases your energy level, but eating a balanced diet, including protein, whole grains and lots of fresh produce, also puts an extra pep in your step.
    And other people will take note of it, too. Whether it’s your boss at work noticing an upsurge in productivity, or your kids, who are certainly loving the extra play time with you at the park. Your increase in stamina and strength is hard to deny by everyone else, so go ahead and plan an outing to the mountains with your friends or a fun date night roller-skating with your spouse. Your new energy and sense of adventure is contagious!
    You're Glowing

    You’re wearing a smile that cannot be wiped off these days, you’ve got the confidence to take on the world, and you’re feeling good. Those extra endorphins from getting active and eating healthy foods, such as fish, low-fat dairy, and leafy green veggies, boost your mood, and it’s apparent to those around you. Bask in the compliments and be sure to compliment yourself; after all, you’ve worked hard to get healthy and it’s showing! 
    Seeing is Believing
    Overall, it doesn’t really matter what others notice or think about your weight loss. What matters most is your personal development and happiness.
    An added perk to reaching your weight loss goals is that as you start to see and feel the results of your weight loss, you start believing in those results and can develop improvements in your body image and health-related quality of life, according to one study. If you’re feeling happier and more confident, reward yourself with tangible gifts that make you feel pampered. Make an appointment with a salon for that haircut you’ve always wanted to try, a shopping trip to the cosmetics counter for a bold new lip color, and take an afternoon to buy yourself a new, on-trend outfit for a date night. So go out and celebrate every little milestone with your weight loss and be proud of the healthier and happier you.

  • Sarah S – Jenny Craig

    Weight Loss Tips for New Moms

    By Sarah S – Jenny Craig, in Inspiration,

    Becoming a new mom can be one of the most exciting and change-filled times in your life. Oftentimes, these changes may temporarily derail your healthy habits. Even if your new bundle of joy has put your healthy lifestyle on the backburner, don't worry — there are plenty of ways to bounce back.
    It’s important to remember that everyone’s bodies and lives are different, so it’s never useful to compare your progress to someone else’s. Instead, you should set realistic goals and create a plan that works specifically for you. To help encourage your progress, it’s best to do activities that you like to do and to make sure you’re not overexerting yourself. You don’t want to become fatigued or injured when you have a little one to take care of.
    Another thing to avoid is paying too much attention to the scale. Although you want to feel healthier and find the best way to lose weight after the baby, what’s most important is that you’re healthy, not that you’re shedding a certain number of pounds. After you give birth, your body goes through hormonal changes, and these fluctuations can lead to things like water retention and bloating1. As a result, the number on your scale might be higher, and it can end up discouraging you when in reality, you’re actually on the right track. It’s important to not give and keep going because most important of all, you are building healthy habits.
    By using the following food, body and mind tips to get back on track with your healthy eating and activity habits, you can get back to your pre-pregnancy weight:
    Food: Focus on Healthy Eating
    For months now, you've been eating a little extra to support a growing baby — which is a good thing! During your transition from pregnancy to motherhood, you may feel exhausted, stressed, or emotionally drained, and these feelings can be increased if you aren't eating well. Be sure to eat a variety of lean protein, fruits and vegetables, whole-grains and nonfat dairy products throughout the day. Avoid crash diets or restrictive eating plans that may deprive your body of important nutrients. Instead, focus on eating healthy, balanced meals and snacks.
    If you are breastfeeding, you still need to be eating extra calories to support your body and to produce breast milk. While you are nursing, the needs for most nutrients increase so it is essential that you eat a healthy diet including a variety of nutrient-rich foods. It is equally important to stay hydrated in order to maintain an adequate milk supply; so drink plenty of water, nonfat milk and occasionally 100% fruit juice.
    Chances are, you are going to have your hands full with a new baby, so to make things easy, keep plenty of one-handed healthy snacks around. Items like fresh fruit, sliced and pre-washed veggies, cheese sticks, single-serving size packages of nuts and whole-wheat crackers for eating on the go are great for new moms. Remember to drink lots of water and eat snacks while you nurse to help keep yourself energized throughout the day.
    Snacking on healthy foods is a good way to keep your blood sugar steady, keep unhealthy cravings at bay, and prevent binge eating. It can also help prevent you from getting hungry late at night and eating before bed2. Another thing to be mindful of is portion control. You might feel ravenous from all the energy you’re exerting, but be sure to follow nutrition guidelines and pay attention to serving sizes. Opt for filling foods that contain fiber such as fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Fiber not only helps you feel more full for longer, but it also can help you lose weight, lower your blood pressure, and improve your response to insulin3.
    No matter how hectic your mornings are, you’ll also want to make sure you eat breakfast. Again, it’s about keeping your energy levels up and avoiding getting so hungry that you won’t reach for unhealthy foods later on. Another way to ensure your energy levels are high is to drink a lot of water (8 ounces a day). Research shows that even just mild dehydration can lead to moodiness, problems focusing, and fatigue4. Plus, staying hydrated can keep you full and keep cravings at bay, as our bodies tend to mistake thirst for hunger.5
    Body: Get Your Muscles Moving...But Slowly!
    Be sure to talk with your medical provider before starting any activity plan. When it comes to postpartum exercise, slow and steady is best. In fact, The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommends that postpartum women gradually return to their pre-pregnancy activities. Some ideas to get moving include taking your baby on short walks around the neighborhood or at a nearby park, enrolling in a local "mommy-and-me" fitness class or using a workout or yoga DVD/app while your baby is napping. To add resistance to your workouts and help to restore muscle tone, use a light set of hand weights or dumbbells.
    It can seem overwhelming and unattainable to stick to a morning run daily or hit a yoga class every evening, but that’s okay — you don’t need to have a strict exercise regimen in order to see results. Instead, you might want to focus on squeezing workouts in throughout the day whenever you can. For example, you can do squats while your baby is in a carrier that’s strapped to you, you can take a walk around the neighborhood with your stroller, or you can do a quick HIIT (High-Intensity Interval Training) exercise at home using an app while your baby is sleeping.
    Any little bit of exercise counts, but it’s also good to do a combination of cardio and strength training. While cardio burns those calories, strength training can help improve your mood, increase your bone mass, and even lower your blood pressure6. It might take some trial and error to find out what workout routines work best for you, but once you find something that is not only effective but enjoyable, find a way to do it whenever you have a free second (and we know, it’s not that often). Exercises that can help fight off that “baby fat” include walking, yoga, pilates and more. These workouts can not only help tone you up, but they can help you fight off any postpartum depression, help with aches and pains, and help fight off fatigue7.
    The key is to set simple activity goals, and plan activities that you enjoy so you won't get bored or discouraged. Always include time to warm up and cool down before and after any physical activity. If you can't find time for thirty minutes of consistent activity, break up your activity into three 10-minute bouts.
    Mind: Give Yourself a Break, "Super Mom"
    In taking care of your new baby, your partner, kids or other family members, keep in mind that you still need to take care of yourself! For new moms, it can be all too easy to fall into a "self-sacrificer" mindset. If you find yourself continually putting your own needs on the backburner to take care of others, you may be in this mindset.
    These behaviors can lead to extra stress and fatigue, which in turn may lead to overeating and decreased energy. You don't want to let the stress of a new baby turn food into a comfort or escape. Remember that your family needs you, but you can't take care of others if you don't take care of yourself first.
    If you find that you need extra support, enlist the help of friends and family members. Pay attention to what your body is telling you and learn to recognize when you're feeling stressed or pressured. When you start to feel overwhelmed, get some fresh air and breathe deeply, take time to stretch or go for a quick walk.
    Set aside a few minutes each day for yourself and make yourself a priority; whether it is to read a book or magazine, take a nap or enjoy a bubble bath. It can also be very helpful to have a regular “stress-relieving” routine or activity that can calm both your body or your mind. This can be anything from a meditation class, a yoga class, or even just seeing a therapist. It doesn't take much to recharge your batteries and remember - you're definitely worth it.
    Sleep: Get those ZZZ’s
    Gone are the days where you can go to bed and wake up exactly when you feel like it, but this doesn’t mean you can start foregoing sleep altogether. Sleep is important for both your mental health and for postpartum weight loss8. Lack of sleep can make you more prone to stress and anxiety, and it can even alter your hormones so that you end up craving more unhealthy foods and storing more fat9. Although there is no exact number new moms should be sleeping, The National Sleep Foundation recommends that adults get between seven and nine hours of sleep per night10. However, the reality is that most newborns wake up every three hours and need to be fed or changed and that means that means less sleep for mom.
    Although it’s difficult to fit in the amount of sleep your body needs, there are a number of ways to maximize your number of hours of rest. First, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Switch off taking care of the baby with your partner, and enlist a friend, babysitter, or grandparent on days when everything feels too hard. Try to nap when your baby is napping and do your best to get your child used to a sleeping routine.
    Get Help or Do It Alone?
    Since everyone is different, the best way to lose weight is to find a program that you will follow.
    If you are a new mom and want to learn more about post baby weight loss tips, Jenny Craig can help personalize a plan to meet your needs. We also offer the support and guidance from a dedicated weight loss consultant to help you stay on track. Once you are six weeks postpartum, even if you are breastfeeding, you are eligible to enroll in the Jenny Craig Program

  • Sarah S – Jenny Craig

    Healthy Thanksgiving Tips

    By Sarah S – Jenny Craig, in Live Life,

    Each year at Thanksgiving, we gather around the dinner table and spoil our taste buds and often our diet with sugary cranberry sauce, salty gravy, and heaps of mashed potatoes. For a day that is so focused on food, it’s easy to get lost in the kitchen and forget the true meaning of the day. 
    Is it possible to truly enjoy this so-called “turkey day” in the midst of a successful weight loss journey? Absolutely! Use these easy tips to help you stay on track during the long weekend—and get a healthy jump on the holiday season.
    Stay active.
    You’ve got a few days off… put them to good use! If you’re not the spontaneous exercise type, check your gym or yoga studio’s Thanksgiving weekend schedule a few days in advance, then make a firm plan to attend the most appealing classes; you’ll be more likely to go if you make a workout date with a friend.
    Exercise as a family
    Step out of the kitchen for some fresh, crisp autumn air and exercise as a family. Go for a walk before and after dinner in the falling leaves, cruise around the neighborhood on bicycles, or organize a fun game of football in the backyard. If the weather is uncooperative for outdoor activity plans, do something fun in the family room, such as “gobble games.” You could even break tradition and head for the ski hill!
    Many cities even host “turkey trots” the day of; sign up with the family for a fun activity. If the weather forecast looks fair, plan a hike with your family—and by all means, don’t let the actual holiday be an excuse to laze around! Going for a brisk walk an hour after the feast is a wonderful way to avoid the “turkey nap.”
    Eat smart.
    Nobody’s expecting you to be a “diet saint” on this particular Thursday—but you also don’t want one anything-goes meal to derail two weeks’ worth of healthy choices. So when you’re filling your plate on Thanksgiving, choose wisely. Use your visual portioning guide. Load up on healthy veggies, choosing steamed or lightly sautéed dishes over creamy casseroles or marshmallow-covered yams. Here’s a tried-and-true plate-filling trick: use one dinner roll to make a turkey-cranberry slider, then fill the rest of your plate with lightly dressed salad or green vegetables. Then ensure that you stay on track by choosing a Jenny Craig dessert over pie. Our Apple Crisp and Chocolate Walnut Brownie are even more delicious after about 20 seconds in the microwave.
    While it may be easy to have seconds or indulge in two different types of pies, be aware of the potential effect on your healthier lifestyle. Avoid overeating by eating smaller portions of starchy, high-calorie foods like potatoes and stuffing and filling your plate with lean turkey and colorful vegetables. Don’t go back for seconds! Pick one dish to splurge on, like putting gravy on both your potatoes and turkey or saving room for a slice of pumpkin pie. Of course, be sure to stop eating when you’re full!

    Give thanks.
    When everyone around you is on the second piece of pie, you might be tempted to notice what you don’t have. If you feel this happening, this is a perfect opportunity to exercise your gratitude muscle! Take a few moments to mentally immerse yourself in gratitude for everything that’s going right in your life. Now focus specifically on your weight loss journey: what has giving up unhealthy habits given back in return? Whether it’s a boost to your self-esteem, a few smaller-sized pieces in your wardrobe or more energy to chase your toddler, let those good vibes wash over you! Continuing to make healthy choices should be easy as you-know-what.

    So often Thanksgiving turns into a hectic day spent in the kitchen basting the turkey and baking pie after pie. You might miss out on what the day is actually all about – being thankful for family, friends, health, and home. Keep the day simple by not focusing on the food and recognizing the importance of togetherness. If you can, prepare (healthy version) of stuffing, salads, and desserts the day before, so you can simplify the traditional dinner and spend more time with the family. Gather with your family and friends before you eat to talk about what you’re thankful for this year. You can even be grateful for the progress you’ve made on your weight loss program!
    Catch up with friends
    Skip the chip-and-dip appetizers and fill your pre-dinner time with catching up with friends. You’ll be less likely to munch on snacks if you’re chatting with your neighbors and friends that you invited over for dinner about their latest news!
    Avoid leftovers.
    If we’re being honest—and we ALWAYS are, here at Jenny Craig—we know that one of the most challenging things about Thanksgiving weekend is those amazing leftovers! To avoid being tempted for the next few days, enlist your family’s help: have each member pack up one complete meal, including dessert, in separate containers with their names on them. Then considering packing up everything else for those less fortunate. Most homeless shelters welcome food donations, so find one near you and swing by with your extras.

  • Sarah S – Jenny Craig

    How High Fiber Diets Help With Weight Loss

    By Sarah S – Jenny Craig, in Eat Well,

    Ahhhh, fiber. It’s one of those things we’ve all heard is good for us, and yet it’s hard to hear the words “make sure you’re getting enough fiber” without hearing them in your grandmother’s voice. Here are two facts that may help you shift your perspective just a bit: getting your fiber can be unexpectedly delicious—and it can also be a key player in your weight loss success. In fact, in a recent study1, researchers found that consuming a high-fiber diet helped participants lose weight AND keep it off.
    What Is Dietary Fiber?
    Okay, bear with us here because this part may sound a little less than appetizing. The definition of fiber is the indigestible part of plant food that travels through our digestive system. This basically means that fiber is the part of the food that never gets digested. Instead, the purpose of fiber is to help the other parts of the food get through the digestive system correctly. They fulfill an important role by assisting with your digestive processes, even though dietary fibers are not digested themselves.
    Fiber is divided into two different types —soluble and insoluble. Soluble fiber dissolves in water and then forms a gelatinous substance as it goes through the digestive system. Insoluble fiber remains solid the entire time.
    Soluble Fiber
    Soluble fiber, as we mentioned, forms a gelatinous substance in your body. It slows down digestion, which can regulate blood sugar levels, and attaches to cholesterol on the way out to help lower your risk of heart disease. Since soluble fiber is not digested you will find that foods with soluble fiber will contribute less calories and a lower blood sugar level than other foods. Foods high in soluble fiber include oats, nuts, peas, beans, apples and blueberries.
    Insoluble Fiber
    Insoluble fiber is found in wheat bread, carrots, green beans, and cauliflower to name a few. It is the type of fiber that helps keep you feeling full so you will not grow hungry as quickly. Insoluble fiber, however, is really known for keeping your digestive system working at a regular pace, and we will cover the health benefits of this in a minute!
    Daily Fiber Intake
    The daily nutritional goal for fiber is about 25 grams for women and about 35 grams for men, which actually isn’t too difficult to attain. You can get this amount of fiber by consuming about 2 cups of fruit and 2.5 cups of vegetables a day. Veggies and fruits with the skin on them will contain more fiber2—so try to eat more foods in whole rather than peeling or juicing them, to get the full fiber and other nutritional benefits available. If you make smart switches and additions like snacking on fruits and veggies instead of chips or sweets, then you will be at your recommended amount of fiber in no time!
    How Fiber Helps Weight Loss
    Due to the unique properties of soluble and insoluble fiber, your weight loss journey would be incomplete without an addition of more fiber into your diet. Here are just a few reasons why.
    #1. Healthy Digestion
    It can be difficult to lose weight if you’re struggling with irregularity. Consuming a high-fiber diet helps support healthy digestion by “bulking up” your stool, ensuring that waste moves through your colon at a healthy pace. Just remember that for fiber to do its waste removal duties, it needs plenty of hydration! Make sure you’re drinking an adequate amount of water and other non-caloric beverages throughout the day.
    Fiber also promotes the healthy bacteria in your system which, are anti-inflammatory and can contribute to IBS if their levels are low. So a high-fiber diet will leave your system moving smoothly and happily.3
    #2. Skin Health
    Fiber aids in the digestion process in addition to many other benefits. Improving your digestive health can allow yeasts and bacteria that can cause rashes or bumps on your body to be flushed out before they have a chance to act. High-fiber diets can also help you absorb all the nutrients you need more sufficiently. For your skin, this means making you feel and look healthier. One of the primary reasons for breakouts is an unhappy digestive system, so if you use fiber to get that in check, then your skin (not only your stomach) may thank you for it!
    #3. Preventing Calorie Absorption
    When fiber passes through your body, it increases the speed of digestion. This means that the calories you consume do not have quite as much time to be absorbed so your body gets rid of the calories a little faster than it would without fiber.
    #4. Get Full & Stay Full
    High-fiber foods are, by nature, just plain satisfying. They’re hearty and filling, and since they metabolize more slowly than low-fiber foods, they tend to help us feel full longer. Oatmeal, apples, carrots, and legumes like garbanzo beans and lentils are some examples of high-fiber foods. Although these foods do not have magical fat-burning properties, they do have a pleasing, weighty presence IN the belly, without contributing to long-term weight ON the belly.
    #5. Stronger Bones
    Some types of soluble fiber, such as asparagus, leeks, and oats, have been shown to increase the bioavailability of minerals like calcium in foods4, which may help maintain bone density. Having high bone density can reduce the risk of osteoporosis and lead to overall better strength and a healthier self. Though studies are not prolific, there have been a few that suggest a high fiber diet leads to higher bone density and lower risk for osteoporosis.
    #6. Stay Healthier In General
    According to health experts5, making fiber an important part of your diet will not only help you control your weight—it can also help prevent type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease, contributing to better health in the long run. Fiber helps prevent Type 2 diabetes by keeping blood sugar levels steady and helping you maintain a healthier weight.6 It can also lower your risk of heart disease by picking up extra cholesterol in your system7 and pushing it out before it can be at risk for clogging your arteries. (However, be careful of too much fiber...)
    Those with high-fiber diets have been linked to having a lower risk of colorectal and breast cancers8, due to the lack of inflammation in your system. In addition, a high fiber diet has been linked to decreasing stroke risk.9 Overall, fiber has some amazing benefits that may help your general health.
    Fiber Supplements - Good or Bad?
    One shortcut that you may be tempted to try is to take fiber supplements. These fibers are typically extracted from healthy sources, but most studies have shown that they do not produce the same benefits as just eating fibrous foods in their natural form.10 Our nutritionists recommend adding fruits, oats, and of course more veggies to your diet instead of taking fiber pills or supplements.
    Fiber & Jenny Craig
    Our menus are designed to meet expert recommendations for fiber. Jenny Craig entrees that have 5+ grams of fiber include Roasted Turkey Medallions, Broccoli & Cheese Stuffed Potato, Chicken Wrap with BBQ Sauce, and the Classic Cheeseburger.
    If you’re using our Fresh & Free Additions or cooking on your own, here are some other high-fiber, low-calorie foods you might add: raspberries (4 grams of fiber @ 32 calories per ½ cup serving), broccoli (5 grams of fiber @ 55 calories per 1 cup serving) and cooked peas (4 grams of fiber @66 calories per ½ cup serving).
    There is no doubt that fiber is healthy for you—mostly because it resides in plant-based foods that are always good for you to add to your diet. One of our favorite things about fiber is that it is easy to add to your diet. If you do not have time for complicated diet switches then incorporating more fiber is a really simple, effective way to increase weight loss as well as many other health benefits. We would love to hear more about your experiences with increasing your fiber intake—what are your favorite fibrous foods, and best dishes to make with them?

  • Jenny Craig

    The Most Mouth-Watering Jenny Craig Desserts

    By Jenny Craig, in Eat Well,

    There’s no need to ‘cheat’ when you’re losing weight with Jenny Craig because the foods you love are on the menu, even dessert! You'll be happy with chef-crafted dessert options that feature rich chocolate, creamy vanilla, fun sprinkles and even gooey marshmallow. You’ll never feel like you’re missing out on all your favorite treats. Here are our four most popular desserts.
    S’mores Bar
    This quick and indulgent snack will have you reminiscing of starry summer nights by the campfire with your family. Traditional s’mores are a sticky mess, but Jenny Craig’s version is just as delicious, without the hassle. A layer of gooey marshmallow sits on top of crisp graham cracker, all covered in creamy chocolate. It’s the perfect dessert to throw in your bag for an on-the-go confection.
    Triple Chocolate Cheesecake
    Triple the chocolate, triple the treat! Our luscious cheesecake is a smart choice because it’s made with fat-free cream cheese and under 200 calories. This treat includes semi-sweet chocolate chips and each slice is topped with a chocolate drizzle.
    Chocolate Lava Cake
    Often a favorite dessert menu item in restaurants, Jenny Craig’s version of the chocolate lava cake is just as delicious and decadent, but you can enjoy it in the comfort of your home! Indulge in this rich chocolate cake that features a warm and heavenly chocolate center. This divine dessert is merely 150 calories.
    Vanilla Buttercream Cupcake
    It’s a party for your taste buds! Celebrate with our scrumptious Vanilla Buttercream Cupcake topped with sprinkles - it doesn’t even have to be your birthday. It’s a low-fat satisfying sweet with 4 grams of fiber and only 140 calories.
    Lemon Cake 
    You can’t go wrong with this tasty and delightful cake. It's a delicately soft cake with a lemon glaze both bursting with tangy flavor. The ultimate way to end a delicious meal!

  • Jenny Craig
    Life can be hectic. The homework, soccer practices, volunteer activities and errands fill up the calendar, often leaving family dinners a low priority and serving takeout or quick meals on-the-go as the number one option for keeping you and your kids fed on busy nights. But eating dinner together may be one of the most important things you can do with your kids.
    Benefits of Family Dinners
    Having consistent family meals is not only good for spending time with your loved ones, but it also has a myriad of other benefits. Children especially benefit from family dinner time as it has been shown to lead to a better academic performance and higher self-esteem. In addition, dinnertime conversation increases a child’s vocabulary more than being read aloud to; older kids get better grades, and dinner together decreases obesity in kids by implementing healthy nutritional habits.  
    Sharing a nightly family dinner provides a consistent opportunity to create experiences that are meaningful. It is a time to connect with your loved ones and give your children a steady evening family routine throughout the week. It doesn’t need to be a big event each meal. Just by having a simple meal each night is enough as long as you are spending quality time with your children.
    We know life gets hectic with juggling work, extracurricular activities, and everything thing else in between, so adding daily family dinners can be a little overwhelming at first. If you are having a hard time planning a consistent mealtime, use these tips to reconnect with your loved ones and establish a family dinner routine.
    Make a meal plan
    As a chance to initiate healthier eating habits as a family, make a meal plan that suits the nutritional needs of your family. Get your kids invested in dinner together by allowing them to choose a main meal each week (within reason, of course). Look in cookbooks and online for new, interesting and healthy recipes to broaden everyone’s taste buds. 
    Even on designated family dinner nights, your family may still have a full schedule, so look for simple ways to make easy healthy family meals, such as incorporating frozen mixed vegetables into a low-sodium teriyaki chicken stir fry or plugging in the slow cooker in the morning for shredded chicken tacos for dinner. Other family dinner entree ideas include a make-ahead quinoa salad with baked, herb-seasoned cod, whole grain pasta with marinara sauce (an easy way to sneak in veggies, like carrots and zucchini), and make-your-own chef salads, which grant your kids the ability to try a variety of vegetables. 
    Commit to a schedule 
    Between late work nights for you and extracurricular activities for the kids, it’s hard to find the time to come together. Family dinners might not happen every night, but by pulling out the calendar and scheduling family time to share a meal, you and your family will be committed to reconnecting over food and conversation. For example, let everyone know that every Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 5:30 PM is family dinner night so they can plan accordingly. 
    Cook together in the kitchen
    This is the one time it’s okay to have “too many cooks in the kitchen.” Let the littlest kids help set the table by allowing them to be creative with the place settings. Toddlers can color and add stickers to place cards, pick out placemats, and carry napkins and silverware to the dinner table. Older children can help with food preparation in the kitchen, setting them up to learn about fresh ingredients, good habits, and sensible portions. 
    Reconnect - Turn off the screens
    Rules are rules–turn off the TV and leave the phones on the counter, which means even you can wait to send off that last email for work. Dinnertime is a key time to engage with each other, so ask questions about their day and explore their world with them. Share your own funny stories or experiences, too. Not only will you stress less about what your kid is up to, but you’ll be building a tighter connection and strengthening your relationship–all because you took the time to break bread together!
    Eating dinner together each night as a family is a simple task that can have a big impact. It can seem tough to get everyone together, but it is essential not only for your child’s development but also for creating experiences together. Make it a priority to hold a family dinner at least 3-4 nights a week. If you are having trouble sticking to this routine, follow the tips above to help you establish a nightly family dinner routine.

  • Jenny Craig

    4 Jenny Craig Entrees that Make Great Salads

    By Jenny Craig, in Eat Well,

    Salads are a great way to mix in Fresh & Free Additions as a side dish, but how about integrating your meal plan entrée into a fresh salad of greens, herbs and other vegetables? Here are 4 Jenny Craig entrees that make great salads.
    Tuna Dill Salad Kit. Our Tuna Dill Salad Kit is packed with flavor. It comes with tuna, a dill and Greek yogurt dressing and wheat crackers to add some crunch. You can wash some Romaine lettuce to create your own lettuce wraps topped with freshly sliced tomatoes, or mix in some onions, avocado, cucumber and cilantro to add some brightness and texture.
    Chicken Sandwich. Our Grilled Chicken Sandwich is packed with protein, and the boneless, skinless chicken breast has been grilled and seasoned to perfection. Bring the grill to your salad by adding your chicken to a bed of grilled vegetables, like zucchini, squash and peppers, or mix the chicken breast into any greens your heart desires.
    Green Beans with Garlic & Olive Oil. While featured as one of our favorite Jenny Craig side dishes, our Green Beans with Garlic & Olive Oil are already dressed for salad perfection. Finely chop red onion (or shallots) with basil and add them to your green beans.
    Ramen Noodles. Our delicious Ramen Noodle Bowl with Chicken & Veggies is a classic comfort meal with a rich broth and succulent chicken and mushrooms that are complemented by the crisp carrots and red peppers. You can transform your ramen into a noodle salad by straining the noodles and accouterment from the broth, then letting it chill. You can add some crunch with coleslaw mix and scallions, and a touch of sweetness with mandarin oranges.
    Transforming these Jenny Craig entrees into salads allows you to experiment with different Fresh & Free additions all year long. Continue to check the Perfect Portion for more delicious ways to pair your Jenny Craig menu with other sides or enhance your meal with seasonal flavors—it’s one more way Jenny Craig makes food even more fun!

  • Jenny Craig

    Top 10 Questions for a Nutritionist

    By Jenny Craig, in Inspiration,

    Do you have questions about the right foods to eat, portion sizes, weight loss, or the how-to’s of a healthy lifestyle? Sarah V., our Jenny Craig Nutritionist, answers some of the most commonly asked questions. Please use the comment box below if you have any additional questions!

    1. Is eating gluten-free healthier?
    Gluten-free diets are typically followed by people with celiac disease, an inherited autoimmune condition. Eating a gluten-free diet without having celiac disease, or a sensitivity to gluten, does not necessarily contribute to weight loss or a healthier diet.
    2. How can the Jenny Craig program work with foods such as cupcakes, lasagna, etc?
    We seek to emphasize healthy ingredients, while minimizing added sugar, non-nutritive sweeteners, sodium and saturated fat. The Jenny Craig program is designed by nutritionists to incorporate whole-grains, lean protein, healthy fats, low-fat dairy, vegetables and fruits which reflect the guidelines of major government and health organizations for a proven and balanced approach for weight management.
    3. Why can’t I eat a lot of fruit to lose weight?

    Of course, fruits are rich in water, high in fiber and full of nutrients. Members should be encouraged to eat whole fruits rather than juice or dried fruits. However, fruits do contribute calories (about 60 calories per serving) and sugar to your diet and therefore should be consumed in moderation. It is important to consume healthy amounts of each food group so that you have a well-balanced diet.  
    4. How much does fitness and exercise matter?
    Physical activity, whether moderate/vigorous, natural, recreational or strengthening, contributes to various health benefits as well as assisting your body in maintaining weight loss.
    To achieve the health benefits of physical activity, 30 minutes of moderate activity on most days is suggested. However, on maintenance it is recommended to strive for 45-60 minutes. 
    5. Do you need to adjust your diet as you age?
    Yes. As you age it is important to continue to consume a healthy diet, stay active and monitor your health. Nutritional needs do change as you age, and it is important to educate yourself and understand nutrient requirements specific to your body.  
    6.What’s the most important tip, post-Jenny Craig?  

    Portion control. Moderation is key to enjoying your life and maintaining your healthy weight. Use visual cues to remind yourself of proper portion sizes.
    It’s important to continue those healthy habits that you have acquired along your weight loss journey, while maintaining a good support system.
    7.How can I watch for sodium?
    Staying mindful, monitoring your food and paying attention! Keeping yourself aware of your sodium intake is important. Reading the nutrition labels on your foods and keeping track of how much salt you add to your cooking can help you monitor your sodium intake.
    8. What are the most notorious things that cause weight gain on maintenance?
    Old habits are one of the biggest reasons why people can’t lose weight or keep it off. Stay motivated, be consistent and continue to incorporate positive changes into your life.     
    9. Why is there so much bread on the program?
    The program currently consists of 50-60% carbohydrate, 20-25% protein and 20-25% fat.  The menu balances a variety of grains, as well as vegetables, fruits and low-fat milk products that all contribute to the carbohydrate content. These parameters reflect the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Dietary Guidelines and are not considered high in carbohydrate.  
    10. Do you recommend meal prep?

    Post-Jenny Craig, meal prepping allows you to incorporate a healthy and balanced diet into your busy lifestyle. It is a helpful way to plan pre-portioned meals and have them ready for you throughout the busy week. Preparing your own meals in advance puts you in control of what you eat and provides you with simplicity and convenience.

  • Jenny Craig
    We were impressed by all the entries for our third annual Simple Inspirations Recipe Contest, where Jenny Craig members created fun dishes to tantalize our taste buds and demonstrated what’s possible with a little inspiration, creativity and Fresh & Free Additions. Recipes were submitted for the following categories: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner, Snacks & Sides, Desserts & Shakes, and Fresh & Free Additions.
    Here is a sneak peek at the winning recipes in each of the categories, as well as a few special categories we added on. The full recipes will be available soon in our upcoming e-book that will be featured on our website!
    This Very Berry Barscotti Parfait submitted by Jamie B. combines sweet cherries with a crunch using our Barscotti with Cranberries and Almonds. It’s smoothed out with nonfat Greek vanilla yogurt, which adds another sweet and protein-packed punch. Not only do you get a delicious texture from all the ingredients, but you also get a crumble from the bar and the bite from the cooked cherries. It’s also gorgeous to look at with its deep red syrup and layers of flavor.

    Lunch & Dinner
    Cooking a Jenny Craig entrée into two different dishes was a clever way to go for our Lunch & Dinner category. Maria R. created a Chicken Zoodle Soup using our Chicken Pot Pie. She removed the crust and heated up the filling in combination with chicken broth and zucchini noodles to create a warm, hearty meal. She then took it a step further, using the crust for an Apple Tart! With a bit of apricot preserves, cinnamon and apples, she baked up the perfect ending to a delightful lunch or dinner, and showed anything is possible with one Jenny Craig entrée!

    Snacks & Sides
    Nothing gets our mouth watering like crunchy snacks, and these Snappy Ranch Rings created by Robin W. had us savoring this snack down till the very last bite! These Snappy Ranch Rings replace your typical fried onion rings with Ranch Snaps for a crunchy, flavorful coating that works perfectly when baking these onion rings in the oven.

    Desserts & Shakes
    Chocolate on its own is already a treat, but Cheryl B. created this Velvety Chocolate S'Mores Shake that had us feeling like we were indulging on a decadently delicious dessert. Not only does this shake combine our S’mores Bar and Vanilla Dream Shake, but it also has two surprising elements: A can of diet cream soda and frozen riced cauliflower. The cauliflower provides a velvety texture without as much sugar as a banana would!

    Fresh & Free Additions
    This Tasty Mediterranean Veggie Tomato Soup recipe created by Shelley B. is a savory starter and takes only minutes to prep and cook, thanks to sautéing vegetables like yellow squash, peppers, mushrooms and zucchini and adding it to our Creamy Tomato Vegetable Soup.

    We had our very own Jenny Craig employees participate as well and found two recipes we couldn’t get enough of! Sherry S. took our Grilled Chicken Sandwich and Creamy Tomato Vegetable Soup to create a Cajun Style Gumbo (pictured below) bolstered with okra, peppers, onions and Cajun seasoning for a warm, spicy bowl of flavor. Olivia V. surprised us with her Breakfast Burrito Bowl, where she takes our Egg, Cheese & Turkey Sausage Burrito and, with the help of a tortilla pan, creates a shell that holds the filling along with some spinach and delicious salsa.

    Photographer’s Choice
    A picture is worth a thousand words, and with food pictures being all the rage on social media, we wanted to award someone for appearance and making our mouths drool. Daphne L. submitted her recipe for a Salisbury S hepard Pie in our Lunch & Dinner category. We were drawn to all the colors of this dish that included Salisbury Steak, mixed vegetables, rosemary, and garlic, followed by a fluffy layer of mashed cauliflower and potato, and then sprinkled with crushed Cheddar Cheese Crisps to top it off!

    No Thanks to Cake Choice
    This was a bonus winner, picked by one of our blogger’s No Thanks To Cake. Jessica H. submitted the Game Day Trio for the Lunch & Dinner category. Jessica took our Loaded Baked Potato and transformed it into bacon-cheddar potato balls and a stuffed potato with spinach and artichoke, plus baked some cauliflower with a red pepper hot sauce that she blended herself!

    Congratulations to our winners, and thank you to all who entered! Keep an eye out for our Simple Inspirations Recipe book to be released later this year. In additional to including these delicious winning recipes, we’re also including all types of tasty ideas to inspire your Jenny Craig creations year round.