Living Lite

Food Assistance Needed for the Hungry in America

January 6, 2014

To call attention to hunger in America, Bread for the City and the U.S. Department of Agriculture partnered on January 6. Bread for the City provides food, clothing, medical care, housing assistance, job readiness training, and other essential services to over 31,000 needy people in Washington, DC each year.

Kevin Concannon, USDA Under Secretary for Food and Nutrition Service and Anne Alonzo, Administrator for the Agricultural Marketing Service joined George Jones, CEO, Bread for the City, and neighborhood volunteers at Bread for the City’s Food Pantry. Concannon, Alonzo, and Jones hosted a national media conference call discussing the importance of food assistance programs such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program for low income individuals (SNAP), The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP) which gives food to organizations to distribute to local households, Women Infants & Children Program (WIC), serving pregnant women and their babies, and school meals in preventing hunger. USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) oversees the administration of 15 nutrition assistance programs. These programs serve one in four Americans over the course of a year and work together to form a national safety net against hunger. Visit for more information about USDA nutrition assistance programs.

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Katherine's Healthy Post-Holiday Detox

January 1, 2014

Katherine Tallmadge (Photo by: Neeru Dhawan) Katherine Tallmadge "Detoxing" at the Four Seasons Health Club

Wouldn't you love to spend the next week at a luxurious spa to shed those holiday pounds? Impractical? Okay, create a "Home Health Spa" with my post-holiday detox plan, and you can get pretty darn close to feeling like you are visiting a real spa.

1. Minesweep for Calorie Bombs – Banish any “risky,” fattening or unhealthy foods from the house.

2. Control Your Environment Stock your home (and office) with delicious, healthy foods, such as the batch recipes, like hearty soups and stews from Diet Simple, and Diet Simple Farm to Table Recipes, and piles of clean, chopped, ready-to-grab fruit and veggie dishes with plenty of yogurt (see below).

Four Seasons Health Club Swimming Pool (Photo by: Four Seasons Hotel) Four Seasons Health Club Swimming Pool

3. Hit the Ground Running - Start every day with physical activity - particularly the cardiovascular kind for body fat loss. Don’t even think about it! Before checking email, taking phone calls, or applying make-up (I know – I’m horrible!), get out the door for a walk, jump on your home treadmill, go to bootcamp or to the gym.

4. Join a Local Spa - The most luxurious and complete health club and spa in Washington is the Four Seasons Health Club, hands down (where I give regular lectures with receptions catered by Four Seasons Hotel Executive Chef Douglas Anderson), complete with a salt-water swimming pool, coffee and tea bar with fresh fruit, special relaxation lounges, massages, facial and body treatments, that oh-so-elegant Four Seasons Hotel service, and even free parking. They also provide highly skilled trainers from Verve Health Club to whip you into shape.

Katherine Tallmadge (Photo by: Georgetown Yoga) Katherine Tallmadge "Detoxing" at Georgetown Yoga

5. Yoga - I also believe in yoga for providing strength, balance and flexibility, and at a lower cost. My favorite yoga haunts in Georgetown? Georgetown Yoga, and - if you like it hot - Downdog Yoga.

Diet Simple gives you creative ways to increase your physical activity or contact Katherine for personalized coaching.

Katherine Tallmadge's Favorite Breakfast: Oatmeal with Fruit & Nuts (Photo by: Katherine Tallmadge) Katherine Tallmadge's Favorite Breakfast: Oatmeal with Fruit & Nuts

4. Eat Breakfast Every Morning – Preferably at home, so you’re not tempted by the bagel-the-size-of-your-head at the office or the doughnuts and cookies passed around at the mid-morning meeting. Studies show skimping on breakfast usually backfires and causes over-eating later. Diet Simple is filled with enticing breakfast ideas.

Katherine Tallmadge's Butternut Squash Soup with Curry and Ginger (in Diet Simple Farm to Table Recipes) (Photo by: Katherine Tallmadge) Katherine Tallmadge's Butternut Squash Soup with Curry and Ginger (in Diet Simple Farm to Table Recipes)

5. Eat Light at Night – Soup is ideal for feeling satisfied with fewer calories so you don’t go to bed feeling too full.  It helps you sleep better, helping you wake up early enough to exercise and feel hungry for a good breakfast in the morning. Diet Simple and Diet Simple Farm to Table are filled with delicious soup ideas,

6. Sleep at least 7 to 8 Hours – Sleep disturbances are correlated with weight problems,

7. It Takes A Village - Spend your time with like-minded people and avoid people who will sabotage your goals. This is an important feature of being at a spa which makes it so easy. If your spouse or friends are not on board, it will be difficult to stick with any plan. In Diet Simple, Katherine gives you ideas for handling the people in your life. Or, contact Katherine for Personalized Coaching.

The Battle of the Bulge is Won at the Margins. Sweeping Dietary Overhauls are Impractical and Don't Work Over Time. Shrewd, Small, Concrete Changes Which Can be Easily Incorporated into Your Daily Routine Lead to Success!

Wear a Pedometer Daily! 10,000 Steps Maintains Health and Weight (Photo by: Katherine Tallmadge) Wear a Pedometer Daily! 10,000 Steps Maintains Health and Weight

Katherine's Simple Detox Diet to Lose Weight Fast

1. Eat your large, balanced - delicious - breakfast you enjoy (examples in Diet Simple) comprising at least 1/3 of your day's calories,

2. Add any veggie soup (no, it doesn't have to be Cabbage Soup!) before each lunch and dinner. Try Katherine’s “Cleansing” Veggie Soup,

3. At lunch and dinner, eat only lean proteins, such as seafood, poultry, extra lean red meat, fruits and veggies (fruits and veggies are UNLIMITED). Banish refined starchy foods and sugars from lunch and dinner until you lose your desired weight,

4. Eat pleanty of YOGURT. Why yogurt? A body of scientific evidence is building that yogurt may help keep you lean. A Harvard study found eating yogurt is correlated with lower body weights. A more recent study found changing the bacteria in your gastrointestinal tract to the healthier kind may make it easier for some people to lose weight. Yogurt contains probiotics which provide beneficial bacteria in your GI tract which help your immune system and may even keep you lean,

4. You must build up to at least 10,000 pedometer steps minimum, but 12,000 to 15,000 steps per day average to lose weight and transform your health with ease.

Contact Katherine for Your Personalized Detox Diet Plan. Custom-Designing Your Diet Makes Everything Easier and More Enjoyable, according to my clients.

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Katherine's Weekly Market Recipe: Kale & Spinach Gratin

December 19, 2013

This Farmers Market favorite would be an elegant side dish this holiday season, and amazingly is heart healthy, even being smothered in the classic French Bechamel Sauce. This winter, the greens are particularly tasty and abundant so it's a great time to find recipes making them inviting. 

All of my Farmers Market recipes are designed to be, first of all, delicious, but also, easy, quick, and family-friendly. At your Farmers Market you'll find produce picked at peak ripeness, which means maximum flavor, texture and nutrition. For my "Kale and Spinach Gratin with Garlic, Rosemary & Thyme, Smothered in Olive Oil Bechamel Sauce," I recommend you buy the greens, milk, and cheese at the year-round Dupont Circle Fresh Farm Market.


Kale & Spinach Gratin with Garlic, Rosemary & Thyme, Smothered in Olive Oil Bechamel Sauce
Excerpted from Diet Simple Farm to Table Recipes: 50 New Reasons to Cook in Season!
Any greens will do in this versatile recipe.

 Serves 6

1 pound Kale, cleaned and stems removed
2 pounds Spinach, cleaned and stems removed
1 Tablespoon Olive or Canola Oil
1 Large Garlic Clove, minced
2 teaspoons fresh Rosemary, chopped (or 1 tsp dry)
1 teaspoon fresh Thyme leaves, chopped (or ½ tsp dry)
1 recipe Olive Oil Bechamel Sauce (see recipe)
Salt and Freshly Ground Pepper to taste
¼ Cup Parmesan or Gruyere Cheese, freshly grated

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Wash the Kale and Spinach and remove the tough stems. Chop roughly. Heat the oil in a large iron skillet over medium-low heat. Add the garlic and cook until it just begins to color. Add the greens, the rosemary, and thyme to the pan, and let cook a couple of more minutes while stirring until the greens are wilted.

Stir the Bechamel sauce into the greens. Add salt and pepper. Pour into an oiled 2-quart soufflé or heat resistant glass dish and sprinkle the cheese on top. Bake at 400 degrees F for 20 to 30 minutes, or until the top is just beginning to brown. 

Olive Oil Bechamel Sauce

This is a classic French white sauce, but using healthy olive oil instead of butter.

 Makes 2.5 cups

3 Cups 1% Milk
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
2 Tablespoons Flour
Salt and Ground Pepper to taste
Pinch of grated nutmeg (optional)

Simmer the milk in a saucepan on medium-low heat. Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a heavy skillet. Add a bit of flour, and when it sizzles, add the rest. Stir constantly with a wooden spoon or whisk over medium heat. Do not brown. Whisk in the hot milk. Return the mixture to the heat, stirring until the sauce thickens. Reduce to low making sure it does not burn. Add salt, pepper and nutmeg to taste.

Deep Green Leafy Vegetables have the highest antioxidant content of all vegetables. High in fiber, they are rich in minerals, B-vitamins, beta-carotene, and lutein, a compound which may help reduce the risk of age-related macular degeneration (the leading cause of preventable blindness). Absorption of carotenoids, such as lutein, in your body is increased by cooking and by the presence of fat (so cook in a little healthy olive or canola oil!).

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