Almond and banana pre-work out snack

Almond Banana Pre-Workout Cookies/ Snacks

Why pre-workout?

These cookies have protein, fat and carbohydrates in them. These nutrients are fuel for the body, making them a great choice to eat before a workout.

Each cookie also has about 50 mg of potassium which is also an ideal ingredient prior to exercising to prevent muscle cramps and aid in fluid balance.

Avoid eating too close to a workout. I suggest having a pre-workout meal 15 – 30 minutes before your workout.

At least 60 – 90 minutes of moderate intense exercise is recommended for adults 3 – 5 times a week.

Read more at CDC:

Item Amount
1 whole Banana
1 cup Almond Meal
½ cup Almond Butter
1 TBSP Ground Flax
1 Whole Egg
Pinch of salt/spices as desired

ing almond

Real easy:
1. Pre-heat oven to 375
2. Combine the almond flour, ground flax, pinch of salt, spices; cinnamon and stir
3. Stir banana, egg and almond butter
4. Combine flour mix with banana mix
5. Spray cookie sheet with PAM
6. Scoop 1 teaspoon of cookie on sheet (I used a melon ball scoop)
7. Should make about 20 cookies. The cookies don’t spread out so you can space them closer than I did.
8. Bake for 10 minutes
9. Cool and enjoy

Per Cookie 61 Calories 2 Protein(g) 5 Fat(g) 3 CHO (g) 1 Fiber(g) 47 Potassium (mg)

before after almonds

Insight of the day: Pre-pack your snacks!

Insight of the day: Pre-pack your snacks!

Do you like to snack? The urge to snack can come from, boredom, stress, hunger and many other things.

It could even be your body’s way of saying “Hey I am thirsty- not hungry”.  Follow your hunger signals, have a glass of H2O before you start snacking.

Also try distracting yourself with something to do each time you walk over to the snack area. “I will not snack, I will read a book, or go exercise..!”

If you are one who prefers to snack or graze pre-pack your snacks and have them readily available for when you have the urge to snack.

Choose vegetables that are going to provide you with vitamins, mineral, water and little calories.

Vegetables are not “free-foods” meaning you can’t eat an unlimited amount. However, you can eat a large amount of most them.

As part of my menu planning I provide a list of snacks that keep you full, are crunchy and have very low calorie content.

I keep a bag of cut celery, cucumber, and peppers on hand when I get tempted to snack on chocolate or nuts which are very high in calories.

If you do decide to snack on other foods, measure out a portion size, put the bag away and only allow yourself that amount.

Portion Control Survey

Hi everyone! I need your help. If you have one minute couple you please tap into this link and fill out my survey it’s only one question long. Multiple choice.

Thanks in advance!!!!

<a href=”“>Click here to take survey</a>

If you could choose one tool that would help you with portion sizes and making it easier for you to choose healthful foods what would it be?



What are they? How do I use them? Where can I get them?

Chia Seeds

“Chia seed contains a wealth of fiber—5 grams in just one tablespoon. It is the fiber in chia that causes chia seed to swell when combined with water, creating chia gel. Whether you eat chia gel or just the raw seeds, the hydrophilic action of chia seed will keep you full longer than many other seeds”. it is often called “Chia seed pudding” because of the think consistency it forms in a liquid.

“The mild, nutty flavor of chia seed goes well with both sweet and savory dishes. Use chia seed in puddings and smoothies, sprinkle on top of porridge and salads, and add to baked goods in place of flaxseed meal or poppy seeds.”

Bob’s Red Mill seems to have the answer! I really enjoy this brand.

I must attest that eating Chia seed has improved my satiety and gives me plentiful energy until my next meal.

How can I use them?

I prefer it in my yogurt and or kefir but you can also use them in baked goods, smoothies, soups and other recipes.

Where can I get them? Local grocery store; Bobs Red Mill aisle.

Hemp Seeds: Shelled Hemp seeds are referred to as Hemp hearts

Hemp seeds have a high content of essential amino acids and fatty acids. The fat content is of omega-3 and omega-6 fats which are heart healthy.

How can I use them?

When compared to flax and chia, hemp has the highest fat and protein content making it a great addition to soups yogurts and cereals. Hemp seeds are also ground into hemp flour that can be used for cooking or baking.

I eat hemp seeds “shelled” also referred to as hemp hearts. Hemp seed is very nutty and adds consistency to yogurt; it is also rich in fiber and omega-3 fatty acids. It is similar to flax but a softer seed.

Read more on nuts and seeds at whole foods. 

 Where can I get them?

Shelled Hemp seeds can be found at your local Whole Foods with the other bulk items, or purchased pre-packaged on-line.

Flax Seeds:

Flax seeds primary health benefits are from its omega-3 essential fatty acids, lignans and fiber content. Read more here or email me for specifics on lignans.

How can I use them?

Ground flax seed is utilized a little different in the body than the whole seed would be. Grinding the seeds and breaking the outer shell allows the body to absorb some of the fats, while discarding the rest of the seed from the body as waste. If left whole the seed will most likely will “run right through you”.

Ground flax can be used in baking, added to sauces, yogurts or soups. It adds texture and a slight nutty flavor.

Where can I get them?

Again, Bob’s Red Mill ground flax is one of my favorites and found at any local grocery at reasonable cost.

My recipe:

  1. Start with making a chia seed yogurt pudding

-        ¼ cup raw chia seed

-        1 cup of yogurt or kefir (plain or vanilla)

-        Mix together

-        Sit in fridge overnight

-        MAKES ABOUT (3) 1/2 cup PORTIONS

  1. I portion out a 1/2 cup of the Chia pudding
  2. Mix with ½ cup of plain Greek yogurt or kefir
  3. Top with 1 TBSP ground Flax seed
  4. Top with 1 TBSP of Raw Hemp seeds shelled.
  5. Add  ½ cup of fresh fruit or Hemp granola as preferred.
  6. Mix and enjoy.

Disclaimer: Although these seeds are “super-foods” they still provide calories. They are not a “free-food” and it is important to measure portion sizes. They are “super-foods” because of all the great qualities they possess, healthy fats, amino acids and fiber making them a healthful addition to your daily recipes.

Nutrition facts:






























photo (2)

Insight of the day: Stay Hydrated

Insight of the day: Stay Hydrated

Insight of the day: Stay hydrated!

Hydration supports muscle, brain and organ health. Water especially is important.

To add natural flavor to water try slicing up some fresh fruit like green apples, lemons, or limes and allow them to sit in water for a few hours.

Remember energy drinks, coffee and some high caffeinated teas cause water loss from the body. If you drink these beverages remember to drink the same amount of water to make up for the losses.

When exercising remember to replace lost fluids by drinking water, or low calorie vitamin water or powerade. If you are participating in high intensity exercise where you are sweating a lot try drinking 8 oz of water every 10 minutes to prevent dehydration.

The recommendation to drink 64 oz of water daily is pretty accurate (depending on your medical condition) inbox me for individual questions.

Pic provided by:

Pizza Chicken?

I am obsessed with pizza. Not to mention I am a lot Italian and grew up on it. I could eat pizza for every meal. Mom raised us on making our own bread, pasta and pizza! Yay carbs.

Inventing pizza recipes has been a fun tradition in our household. One of my favorites is the “dessert” pizza. Whole wheat crust topped with Nutella, marscapone cheese, fresh strawberries and of course more Nutella….  every recipe can be changed to include Nutella. I will re-create that recipe Paloe style aka caveman diet…. and compare and contrast recipes. (Idea’s boiling: almond and hazelnut flour crust, chopped hazelnuts and dark chocolate, coconut yogurt (Awesome recipe here), fresh strawberries… I can do this).

Back to today’s point: As of recently I have been quite strict with my meal plan and eating little to no wheat and or bread products. With that said Pizza is on the back burner; to be saved for special occasions.

I’ve had to invent recipes that compare to the flavor of pizza. The basil and tomato combination is so good and low calorie I ponder “what can I do with this?”.

Pizza chicken; Chicken baked with all the flavors of pizza. 

Set oven to 350 degrees


1 whole large onion diced

(For additional low calorie vegetables you could add a cup of mushrooms, red, yellow, orange or green peppers, broccoli, spinach)

3- 5 cloves of garlic finely diced

3 – 5 bunches of fresh basil or more sliced (2 cups)

1 – 28 oz can ground peeled no salt added can of tomatoes (imported from Italy or organic)

3 whole chicken breasts (2 pound package)

1 Tbsp Olive Oil

Salt/Pepper/Spices to taste

1. In a casserole dish combine garlic, onions, basil (any additional vegetables)

2. Cut chicken breast into 3 – 4 oz servings, place a top of vegetables

3. Add spices to taste, Drizzle olive oil over chicken and vegetables

4. Cover with tomatoes

5. Bake at 350 degrees F for about 30 – 40 minutes until chicken is cooked and not pink.

This is such a fast meal and feeds 4 people, or can be reserved and prepped ahead for 4 meals.

It could be served over spaghetti quash or with a side of broccoli rabe.

I was very tempted to eat this with my moms bread but that tempt was ceased!

Hard work pays off.

Buon Appetito A Tutti!

Nutrition: Click to enlarge

chicken pizza

pizza chicken


final pizza cx

Thank you Angela!

In 2012 Angela and I worked together on her customized nutrition plan. Angel has done a great job re-enforcing all she learned from the program into her day-to-day routine. As you will read from her testimony she experienced weight loss and improved energy levels.  I want to thank her for this beautiful testimony. I am grateful to have such a beautiful friend with an amazing story.  Angela, Thank you for your ongoing support towards my business and success as a dietitian, personal trainer and health coach.  Your RD, CPT and Health coach always, Nina


Testimony of Success

By: Angela L.

Human Resources Supervisor

San Juan, Puerto Rico

My Success Story working with Nutrition by Nina G. Rocca, RD.

 Nutrition by Nina has made me more conscious of my health and has taught me the importance of eating correctly and keeping an active lifestyle!


My experience working with Nina G. Rocca has been amazing. We started working together in the fall of 2012 when she helped me evaluate my eating habits & exercise lifestyle. I had been gaining weight for the last five years and was not making time to exercise. First, Nina helped me think about what I was eating & we worked around that. She developed a weekly eating plan for me including foods and drinks that I enjoyed like pasta, coffee & chocolate. Also, she included new “super foods” that would help me have more energy to eventually work out & keep up with my active busy lifestyle.

The meals that Nina had developed for me were fun & easy to cook. Every meal I had during the day was going to give me energy to exercise later or not feel hungry long before my next meal. I started to look at food as fuel for my life. A few months later, I started feeling a difference physically. I had more energy & looked forward to going to the gym.

Nutrition by Nina has been a totally fun, educational & successful experience for me.

  • I improved my knowledge about the wellness that food has to offer.
  • I saw nutrition as the energy that will get me through my busy schedule.
  • I assured myself health & well-being for years to come.

I recommend Nina’s nutritional services because she will transfer her skills & knowledge in nutrition & weight loss to the customer in a way that only adapts to them. This should not be a one size fits all plan. Nina will help you achieve your desired healthy lifestyle in a way that works for you. With today’s technology resources, it will be easy to access her services through email, voice chat or messenger, like I did! So you have no excuses when it comes to reaching her in the middle of your busy agenda. I promise you, it will change the way you look at the word diet and/or nutrition forever.