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Trendspotting: Healthy Splurges

Health-minded foodies are discovering virtuous new ways to get their tender beef, crispy cookies and cheesy-eggy bread puddings. And they're keeping fit by baling hay or picking fruit at new rustic-luxe farm stays.

Healthy Splurges: A Few Healthier Ways to Satisfy a Craving

Candy Bar Makeover

Feel-good alternatives to classic sweets

Reese's Peanut Butter Cups vs. Sun Cups
© Antonis Achilleos

If You Like: Chocolate Cups

Try These: Sun Cups have a creamy center of sunflower seed butter (lower in saturated fat than peanut butter) covered in either organic milk or dark chocolate. $2; peanutfreeplanet.com.



Nestle Crunch Bars vs. Alter Eco's Midnight Crunch Bars
© Antonis Achilleos

If You Like: Crispy Chocolate

Try These: Alter Eco's Midnight Crunch bar coats high-protein quinoa in Fair Trade dark chocolate. Quinoa crisps are baked 12 times longer than rice for extra crunch. $4; altereco-usa.com.



Mounds vs. Angell's Snow bar
© Antonis Achilleos

If You Like: Coconut Candy

Try These: Angell's organic Snow bar is preservative- and corn syrup–free. White chocolate is wrapped around shredded coconut flavored with a touch of sea salt. $27 for a box of 12; amazon.com.



Hershey's Milk-Chocolate Almond bar vs. Green & Black's Chocolate-Nut Bar
© Antonis Achilleos

If You Like: Chocolate-Nut Bars

Try These: Green & Black's caramelized peanut–and–sea salt milk-chocolate bar has 17 percent more antioxidant-rich cocoa than the average milk-chocolate bar. $3.50; greenandblacks.com.

Healthy Sodas

There's no high-fructose corn syrup in any of these alt drinks.

Healthy Sodas
© Antonis Achilleos

Fresh Ginger It's sweetened with cane sugar and enhanced with ingredients high in antioxidants, like pomegranate and hibiscus. $2; freshgingerale.com.

Sipp Blue agave nectar provides natural sweetness; the ginger-blossom variety is an infusion of organic ginger, vanilla bean and lime. $3; haveasipp.com.

Dry Soda Co. Sodas have between 45 and 70 calories per 12 oz. serving and are made with pure cane sugar. Flavors like rhubarb and juniper berry make excellent cocktail mixers. $2; drysoda.com.

More Snacks

A few healthier ways to satisfy a craving.

Healthier ways to satisfy a craving.
© Antonis Achilleos

Cookies Tate's now offers a whole wheat–flour version of its classic chocolate chip cookie. $5 per bag; whole foodsmarket.com.

Chocolate Made from raw cacao, fearless bars have three times the antioxidants of most chocolate bars. $5; fearlesschocolate.com.

Popcorn Angie's new "lite" kettle corn contains half the fat and sugar of the original. $3 for a 5 oz bag; angieskettlecorn.com.

Recipe Reinventions

Cookbook by Patricia Wells: Salad as a Meal

Superb Beef Adapted from a recipe in author Patricia Wells's latest cookbook, Salad as a Meal, this rosy roast beef with basil oil seems decadent but contains only two grams of saturated fat per serving.

Breakfast Bread Pudding

Say Yes to Eggs and Cheese Even a small amount of an intensely flavorful cheese can have a huge impact on a recipe. Heidi Swanson shares this lightened bread pudding in her new cookbook, Super Natural Every Day. Her dish has just half a cup of feta for eight servings.


Healthy Splurges: Are Farm Stays the New Spas?

Visitors at lovely new farm stays can get a workout chasing chickens into coops or picking produce that later turns up in ultrafresh dishes in the dining room.

Stony Creek Farm in Walton, New York
Stony Creek Farm. Photo courtesy of Feather Down Farms.

Stony Creek Farm; Walton, New York Guests sleep in tents with canopy beds and help collect free-range eggs.Doubles from $189; featherdown.com.

Sakura Ridge; Hood River, Oregon Fruit picked by guests ends up in breakfasts. Doubles from $150; sakuraridge.com.

Ridge to Reef Farm; St. Croix Visitors stay in a yurt or tree house and pick produce for the island's CSA. Doubles from $95; visfi.org.

Farm Sanctuary; Watkins Glen, New York Pigs and turkeys get TLC from farm-stay guests. Doubles from $105; farmsanctuary.org.


Healthy Splurges: Food Pro Fitness

Equipment

Chefs and wine experts work very hard—and play hard, too. Here, some of their extreme sports gear.

$1,200 Skis "I heli-ski in Canada and have a sweet pair of Folsom custom-designed skis with a graphic of Dr. Dre on the tips and Johnny Cash on the tails," says Richard Betts, the Colorado-based master sommelier.

$4,200 Mountain Bike "My bike collection costs as much as a small car," says chef Daniel Humm of NYC's Eleven Madison Park. He races on this tricked-out Gary Fisher Superfly.

$2,700 Paddle Board Trey Foshee, chef of George's at the Cove in San Diego, got hooked on stand-up paddle-board surfing before it became trendy. His new ride: an 18-foot Joe Bark board.

Sports Stars

We asked sports stars, " What do you eat when you train—and how do you splurge when you win?"

Paul Pierce, NBA star, Boston Celtics
© The Truth Fund

"I'm a sucker for fried chicken. It's the first thing I go for when the season ends. But I only let myself have it once in a while. My go-to pre-game meal is grilled salmon."

—Paul Pierce, NBA star, Boston Celtics

Lindsey Vonn, Olympic alpine ski racer
© Erich Spiess

"I start my day with muesli and end with grilled chicken. When I do well in a race, I let myself have the Austrian dessert Kaiserschmarrn. It's like a supersweet pancake."

—Lindsey Vonn, Olympic alpine ski racer

Kelly Slater, 10-time world surf champion
© Brian Bielman

"My favorite restaurant is La Tantina de la Playa in Bidart, France. I order whole fish, cod-stuffed peppers and sangria. When I'm competing, I drink berry–and–almond milk smoothies."

—Kelly Slater, 10-time world surf champion

Healthy Splurges: Farm-Fresh Goat-Milk Lattes

Coffee bars might want to skip the $20,000 machines and buy a goat, says Dr. Daphne Miller.

Kelly Slater, 10-time world surf champion
© Alex Nabaum

It's 7 a.m., milking time on Shining Moon Ranch in Boonville, California. Farmer Micki Colfax hands me a mug of dark-roast coffee and leads me to the goat shed where her Mendocino Grand champ, Sine Qua Non, is having its own breakfast. I've traveled the globe researching the world's healthiest diets, and I've come to believe there are lessons we can learn right at home on local farms. I'm at the ranch because I feel that Micki (and her goats) might offer insight. Research shows that children raised on sustainable farms have fewer allergies and upper-respiratory infections than kids who grow up in a city. Micki herself has four hardy sons. I wonder, is it the sun? The fresh air? The exposure to animals? The milk they drink? All of the above? Now Micki puts my mug near one of Sine Qua Non's teats. Two squirts and a luxurious foam rises to the brim—an instant latte. I sip. The scientist in me contemplates the milk's medicinal qualities: lactoferrin, a powerful immune booster in the whey, and oligosaccharides, food for the infection-fighting healthy bacteria in our gut. But the gastronome in me just smiles: a rich, silky latte sine qua non. It makes me wonder: Shouldn't every coffee bar have its own goat?

Daphne Miller is a family physician and the author of The Jungle Effect. She is currently at work on a book about healing secrets from the farm.

Healthy Splurges: Power Foods

Açai Super Smoothie
© Antonis Achilleos

Açai

Brazilian Surfers first popularized this freakishly nutritious Amazonian berry. Now it has gone mainstream. The smoothie here, by F&W's Grace Parisi, boosts açai's healthfulness with pomegranate juice.

Chia Seeds

Ultra-marathoners swear by this omega 3-dense desert plant seed. CocoChia snack mix blends it with coconut. livingfuel.com.

Amazonian Jungle Peanuts

These heirloom nuts are loaded with omega-9 and -6 fatty acids and have more protein than flaxseeds. vivapura.net.

Peruvian Incan Berries

A sweet-tart Andean fruit with a raisin-like texture, they're packed with vitamins A and C and iron. sunfood.com.

Published March 2011
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