5 Ways I keep Lent Healthy & Exciting?

February 20, 2018

Healthy lent for me is exciting, it’s a healthy fresh start for my body and mind. This holy period allows me to create healthier habits that last beyond these 40 days.  Also I find it amazing that during these 40 days many people are capable of controlling their cravings and committing to a different lifestyle whether it was food or habit related. Even though it may get tough, pushing through will do wonders to your soul!  

Worried about giving up meat and chicken?

If you are giving up meat and chicken and worried about your protein intake this one’s for you! The most obvious substitute is fish such as salmon, tuna, shrimps etc. Even though there are many fish in the sea it doesn’t mean it’s the only source. During lent you’re gonna learn to love legumes! Chickpeas, lentils, beans and peas are the heart of many healthy dishes. Explore new recipes and you’ll find yourself loving them 365 days a year!

Rule out negativity!

healthy lent


You can’t control other peoples’ negativity but one thing for sure is that you can control your own. During this period, block negative comments and take the time to count your blessings and surround yourself with positive people.

PS: don’t forget to spread your positivity!!!  

Add a healthy habit daily.

healthy lent rola ghaddar dietitian health coach Lebanon

Whether it was walking an extra 30 minutes per day or quitting smoking, lent is a great opportunity to explore healthy habits that do good for your body & mind. Engage in activities that make you feel more positive and relaxed.

Lapses? Get up and start again!

healthy lent jump dietitian lebanon

If you feel like your cravings have beaten you and you’ve failed at it then you’re not alone! Don’t let the lapses be the make it or break it deal. Get up again and continue what you started.

Finally fasting, despite of religion or faith, allows us to regain control of our body and be the greatest version of ourselves.

Final tip

How to create a quick heart healthy meal:

Choose your protein source: fish, beans, peas, lentils

Choose your whole grain carbs: Quinoa, burghol, wholegrain rice/pasta, baked potato

Choose your veggies: Kale, rocca, lettuce, cucumber, tomatoes, bell peppers etc…

Choose your fats: Olive oil, avocado, olives, almonds, walnuts

AND MIX’EM ALL UP IN A BOWL! As simple as that!

healthy lent dietitian lebanon

Picture from Heather Christo.

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5 Things You Didn’t Know About Peanut Butter

April 28, 2017

PEANUT BUTTER! It is definitely one of my favorite ingredients. It’s sweet, salty, smooth and sometimes crunchy, all the reasons for me to include it in my diet day after day.


This post was written by Reem Al Ahmadieh, dietetic intern and it edited by Rola Ghaddar, US Registered Dietitian and Certified Health Coach at Healthy Happy Us, a nutrition and exercise diet center in Beirut, Lebanon.


In this blog, I will be sharing with you 5 fun facts I learned about peanut butter that you probably did not know before.


1.  Peanut Butter can actually reduce diseases 

Did you know that eating peanut butter can help reduce heart disease, cancer, diabetes and aging? Peanuts are a very good source of  antioxidants. This triggers our body’s defense system to act out against various different diseases.



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How I turned cooking from a chore to a passion

December 29, 2016

It was around two and half  years ago, on a sunny spring morning that I sat on my balcony in Beirut deshelling fresh fava beans. My mom calls me a perfectionist, and as much as I try to prove her wrong, that morning was a great example of my perfectionism getting the best of me. As a dietitian, and wife of one year, I was trying to do things right. Fresh and seasonal, full of nutrients, home-cooked with love – yes deshelling fava beans to make Riz B Fool ticked all the boxes. A slow hour later, a hungry husband waiting and hardly enough fava beans to make more than 2 portions, I realized how bad of an idea this was and thought: “Seriously, WHO HAS TIME?!” I always received and made sarcastic comments about my cooking and about being a great house wife (! أوف شو ست بيت شاطرة), and that day, I thought “rightfully so, it wasn’t a title I wanted anyway.”

[This post is written by Nadeen Haidar, Co-founder and dietitian at Healthy Happy Us, a nutrition and sports diet center in Lebanon.]


Cooking didn’t seem to be my “thing,” at that time, it was a chore – something I had to do because, as a dietitian, as a wife, as a future mom, it is the “right thing” to do.


As we count down the days to start 2017, I can’t help but think of the change of heart I’ve had about cooking. This December, my husband and I prepared around 150 meals and sold them for a charity event, and oh how much we loved it. Today, preparing a meal is an experience that engages all of my senses, each dish is an exploration, a marriage and a story. It a process of changing dull and sometimes even poisonous ingredients, to a wonderful, delicious and nutritious creation. It is as close as this world comes to magic.



Here are four lessons I learned about cooking in 2016 that helped me find my path to a more enjoyable cooking experience. I hope you find inspiration in them:


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Best Christmas Gifts in Lebanon for the Fitness/Nutrition lover!

November 30, 2016

We present to you the best Christmas gift in Lebanon this season for the yoga, fitness and nutrition lover.

As November ends, the festive season slowly unfolds itself with all the twinkle and glitter.  Christmas is getting nearer; and this means it is time to take out your Christmas tree and start thinking about getting your beloved ones a gift that they will cherish all year long.


Well think no longer.  With our fabulous range of gifts, you can not only wish your beloved ones a Merry Christmas, but also a Healthy Happy Christmas!


This year we have an expanded selection of gift ideas to cater to different tastes that you can check out below:


  1. Jawbone UP2/UP3/UPmove fitness and activity tracker


These latest fitness gadget/bracelet are as stylish and tech-savvy as trackers get.  Whether you’re on the run or sound asleep, these trackers will generate incredible insight on your activity to fulfill your fitness goals.


We currently have on stock different colors of UP2 + UP3 + UPmove and are selling a limited amount at a better price than many of our competitors.


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Overnight Oats Recipe: Peanut Butter Banana Goodness!

September 07, 2016

 We love oats and for that we incorporate them whenever possible in our recipes. And to mix up our breakfast from the traditional but very yummy oatmeal recipes  we have experimented with overnight oats.  This post is written by Baraa Sabbagh, US registered dietitian nutritionist, sports dietitian, personal trainer at Healthy Happy Us, a nutrition and diet center in Lebanon.


So, if you’re looking for something filling, refreshing, nutritious, and satisfies your very little sweet craving, then you must incorporate overnight oats into your breakfast. Proceed without any doubt and without any questions asked.


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Traditional Oatmeal Recipe: You Won’t Regret it!

August 19, 2016

As dietitians and food lovers, we are always asking people to have oatmeal for breakfast. And the reaction is always quite blank with a nod of “yeah, sure I’ll have oatmeal.” And then I ask “have you had it before?” and there’s always one of two answers: 


  1. Yes, it tastes like cardboard.
  2. No, how do you make that stuff.

This post is written by  Baraa Sabbagh, US registered dietitian nutritionist, sports dietitian, personal trainer at Healthy Happy Us, a nutrition and exercise diet center in Lebanon.

But, because I really love oatmeal and it tastes great if you prepare it right, I’m going to share with you a very basic recipe that actually tastes super good. 


Our favorite breakfast recipe

Our favorite breakfast recipe


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Back to School: Healthy Lunch Box Secrets

August 15, 2016

Back to school season may be as overwhelming for the kids as for the mother, but there is always a way to get your child back into to school spirit in no time! We can start by ticking one thing off the list and it’s to make sure your child takes a lunch box that provides a healthy and balanced meal for a full day’s worth of energy.  This post is written by Baraa Sabbagh, US registered dietitian nutritionist, sports dietitian, personal trainer at Healthy Happy Us, a nutrition and exercise diet center in Lebanon.


Before Leaving Home

Start the day with a power packed breakfast: It should contain a mixture of carbohydrates for stable blood sugar, proteins for sustained energy and a source of good fat for essential fatty acids. This will help the child focus until snack or lunch time. A toasted whole grain waffle/toast with 1 Tbsp. nut butter and a cup of milk makes a great option.


Peanut Butter Sandwich and Milk

Peanut Butter Sandwich and Milk



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5 tips for a healthy Eid

July 04, 2016

Eid is arriving soon and with it comes the glorious traditions of family gatherings and the sharing of food with loved ones. Ramadan teaches us a lot about our body’s ability to resist temptation and the power within us that allows us to control the choices we make. After a month of fasting, our body adapts to a specific eating pattern that we can certainly take advantage of to build healthier eating habits. Here are 5 tips for a healthier happier Eid. This post is written by Nadeen Haidar, Nutritionist at Healthy Happy Us, a nutrition and sports diet center in Lebanon.


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Breastfeeding and Fasting – What does science tell us?

June 16, 2016

Every year, as Ramadan approaches and we prepare ourselves for a month of fasting from dawn to dusk, breastfeeding mothers face a difficult decision: To fast or not to fast?

A lot of questions are raised- Will fasting effect milk supply? Will it affect the quality of milk? What impact will it have on the health of mother and baby?

The answers to each of these questions is, as always, it depends. It depends on the mother’s diet, what she eats when she breaks her fast as well as many other factors. Here are 4 findings from research that will help mothers make a more informed decision about breastfeeding while fasting. This post is written by Nadeen Haidar, nutritionist at Healthy Happy Us, a nutrition and sports diet center in Lebanon.


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Spirulina: A Rich Vegetarian Source of Protein

July 10, 2016

For all of you who are searching for a plant-based protein source, “Spirulina” is the answer!



A type of non-toxic microalgea called “Spirulina” has been consumed for centuries due to its remarkable nutritional value. It consists of high protein concentration in which protein makes up 65 to 71% of its dry weight. In addition, it is unique for its vegetarian, complete protein property necessary for health and contains a total of 18 amino acids. This post has been edited and updated by Baraa El Sabbagh, US registered dietitian nutritionist, sports dietitian, personal trainer at Healthy Happy Us, a nutrition and diet center in Lebanon.


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