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Image courtesy Flickr Nodame.
Image courtesy Flickr Nodame.

Is it possible to lose weight during the holiday season? I’m not sure, but the platters of pot-luck leftovers have begun to arrive in our break room at the office so I’m trumping those New Year’s resolution wannabes and starting now.

Always an outdoor runner, I’ve succumbed to the cold and the limited hours I have to exercise. So I consulted my gym-rat 17-year old and she took me through the machinery at our neighborhood gym (which incidentally, I’d never set foot in).

I climbed onto a stair-climber-cardio-thing and set it on an easy pace. After 20 minutes, feeling near-death, I clicked the screen for my results: I had worked off exactly 118 calories or roughly 1/16th of the bagel I’d had for breakfast. Feeling a tad defeated, I resolved to get my head right.

You’ve got to check out Change Your Brain, a GPB favorite, featuring Psychiatrist Daniel Amen explaining how to extend your life, look younger, lose weight and decrease your risk for Alzheimer's disease, depression, heart disease, cancer and diabetes. It practically whitens your teeth while you watch—you’ll get hooked!

Dr. Amen is back on GPB this Sunday, December 12 at 11:30 a.m. It’s a great show to fold laundry to and get inspired.

Next step: how to deal with December office fare – how do you walk by bowls of chocolate covered pretzels, tins of caramel popcorn and plates of cookies left over from the team parties and orchestra recitals? It’s a lot of beige food. And the icing? It’s actually colored shortening. Shortening is a nice word for lard, which is a nice word for “soft white semisolid fat obtained by rendering the fatty tissue of the hog”. EEE-yew.

Anyway, check out Whole Foods tips for avoiding all this mess.  Alternatively you can just plan on gaining 5 pounds in December and enjoy every minute of it.

Then you can join the legions of New Year’s Day “resolvers”-- if you do, make sure you make your last meal a good one: check out this fab-o recipe for collards, submitted by Angela McKeller, to our new show, Georgia Cooks – you can watch the encore presentation on Saturday, December 18 -- check back with at GPB.org for the exact time.

Meanwhile, here’s the collards recipe—cheers!

Mom Buck’s Collard Greens Winner: 

1 - 16 oz. large bag collard greens, cut, chopped and washed

1 T. extra virgin olive oil 1/2 lb. pork jowel bacon (or fat back if you can find it!!), cut into bite sized pieces/squares, respectively depending on what you found

1 tsp. cumin 1 tsp. red pepper flakes

1 dash cayenne pepper

2 T. chopped white onion

1/2 c. apple cider vinegar

2 T. granulated sugar

4 c. warm water (have more available)

 

Heat oil in large pot over medium high heat. Brown pork jowel bacon (fatback) in oil for about 2 minutes. Be careful not to splatter the oil as you add the bacon to the pot!

Add onion, pepper flakes, cumin and cayenne pepper. Reduce heat to medium and stir for about 1 minute.

Rinse greens and drain. Add apple cider vinegar and sugar to pot and stir until sugar is dissolved. Be careful, the vinegar will make your eyes water if you get too close! Add greens to pot and stir well, combining all ingredients in the pot, until greens cook down to half the size (about 1 minute or so).

Add 4 cups of water. Cook over medium heat, covered, for 45 minutes - 1 hour (or until greens are tender).

Add more water as needed, 1/2 c. at a time. They taste and smell so good, you won't believe they're greens! Enjoy!

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