Saturday, November 21, 2009

Saturday Night Classic Music Video

A live version of this rock classic..

Fort Wayne Site-of-the-Day

My future son-in-law is a member of this. Click here to go there.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Mastering Meetings

Some of us see meetings as a fact of life, others (like my wife) HATE them.

But before you judge my wife and others like her as not being social, take a deeper look at what meeting haters HATE and what you can do to fix them.

From the AOM Blog:

How to Run a Meeting

Posted: 17 Nov 2009 04:51 PM PST


Have you ever been at a meeting where all you can think about is how much more productive you’d be working alone at your desk? And how much of the company’s money is swirling down the drain while your co-workers surreptitiously check their Blackberries under the table? And how you wish you had made like the crew of the Enola Gay and carried a cyanide capsule with you?

People hate meetings. But it’s not the meetings themselves that are inherently pencil-in-eye inducing, it’s how meetings are run. Without a real leader, meetings can become unproductive and inefficient, not only wasting time and money, but sapping office morale. But it doesn’t have to be this way.

A man knows how to lead. He knows how to run a meeting that starts on time, ends on time, and gets things done. Here’s how.

Establish whether the meeting is absolutely necessary. Before you even think about scheduling a meeting, figure out if you really and truly need one. You should only call for a meeting if:

  • The information to be discussed could not be disseminated via telephone or email. Meetings should never be called when only a one-way information exchange is needed.
  • There are clear benefits to having everyone together in one room.

Set an agenda. This is crucial for a productive meeting. Without a clear, pre-set agenda, a meeting will drift off-topic and interminably drag on. And then when you’re done and everyone has dispersed, you’ll suddenly remember an important point you forgot to bring up, thus necessitating another meeting.

Type up an agenda for the meeting with a specific list of what items will be discussed and in what order.
Email everyone a copy a day or two before the meeting to give them a heads up about what to expect and some time to start thinking about the issues and what they’d like to contribute. People can also make additions and objections to the agenda before the meeting instead of at the meeting. Make it clear in your message that if it’s not on the agenda, it can’t be discussed at the meeting. Paste the agenda into the body of the email. People don’t open attachments.

Make sure key people will be in attendance.
If you call a meeting when you know key people can’t come, you’ll basically spend the meeting trying to talk around them and saying, “Well, we’ll have to wait to see what Mike has to say before we can start on that for sure.” Decisions get deferred, more meetings are necessitated, and you waste time afterwards bringing the MIA people up to speed. Arrange a meeting for when you know key people can make it.

Talk one on one with people to resolve pet issues before the meeting. Even if you make it clear that only agenda items can be discussed during the meeting, there are always people who try to break this rule and bring up their favorite pet issue. These people can get the meeting way off track. If you know someone has an issue that doesn’t really affect the group, talk to them one on one before the meeting to preemptively resolve the problem and nip their meeting interruption in the bud.

Bring bagels or donuts. The only thing that makes meetings a bit more palatable is something for the palate. Bring something for people to munch on.

Set up the chairs in a U-shape.
There are 3 different ways to set up a meeting room: the U-shape, a circle, or lecture style. Lecture style, with everyone sitting side by side and facing the front, gives the leader complete control, but doesn’t allow for any collaboration. The circle lends itself to a feeling of equality and plenty of group-think, but with no clear leader, the discussion can easily devolve into a bunch of flapdoodle. The U-shape is the best compromise; it gives people a chance to share and collaborate, but the guy at the top of the U is recognized as the leader and can keep things on track.

The circular, uber-democratic, let’s hug it out style has been in vogue for awhile now, and it makes everyone feel important, but it’s also the reason meetings get off-track and become totally unproductive. The truth is that not everyone does have something important to say, and a leader is crucial in keeping things focused on the things that matter.

Start on time. And don’t recap for late people. Doing so legitimizes lateness and disrespects those who made an effort to show up on time.

Begin with what was accomplished since the last meeting. “Last time we talked about x and here’s how it’s been implemented.” If you don’t want people to feel like meetings are pointless, you have to offer some proof that they’re not.

Get to the heart of the matter. Remember, meetings are not for the one-way exchange of information. If there’s background information people need to know in order to engage the issues, circulate this information in a flier or email before the meeting so everyone is up to speed and you can skip the milk and jump right into the meat. At the meeting, succinctly describe the issue or problem and quickly move into coming up with a solution or course of action.

If people haven’t prepared for the meeting by reading up on the background information or otherwise, then dissolve the meeting. Moving forward will just be a waste of time. This takes some balls, but people will come ready next time.

Come up with a tangible solution. Many times during a meeting when people are unable to attain a consensus, the issue is tabled for the time being, which means of course, that there will inevitably be another meeting in the future to again address the problem. So whenever possible, preempt these future meetings by coming up with a concrete solution and specific actions for people to take. This is where your quality as a leader is tested-can you break through the stalemate, broker a compromise, and come up with a solution?

Control the discussion. Perhaps a leader’s most important job is keeping the discussion productive and on topic. There are several ways to do this:

  • Get feedback from everyone. Having a clear leader in a meeting does not stifle feedback and collaboration, it ensures it. Without a leader, the opinionated loudmouths, who do not necessarily have the best ideas, will dominate the discussion, while the more reticent can’t get a word in edgewise. Draw out the quiet people by asking questions like, “Jane, you’ve had a lot of experience with that company, what is your opinion of their proposal? Of course, some people are quiet because they have nothing insightful to offer. A good leader knows which is which.
  • Ask good questions. Sometimes people can’t come up with the right solution simply because the leader isn’t asking the right questions. Ask questions that will really make people think and look at something from another angle.
  • Shut down disruptions. It’s perhaps the hardest part of the job, but a leader must tactfully shut down people who are getting off-track, whether they’re simply going on and on or they’re just way off-topic. Wait for the bloviator to take a breath and then say something like:
    • “That might be a good subject to discuss another time, but let’s get back to talking about X.”
    • “Why don’t the two of us discuss that after the meeting.”
    • “Good point but we need to get back to agenda.”
    • “Let’s table that for now but we can put it on the agenda for next time.”
    • “I’ve just signaled for Tom to render you unconscious with a blow dart to the neck.”

You don’t want to come off as a jerk and cut them off, but it’s best to err on the side of having a firm hand. While the windbag may be a bit chastised, everyone else in the meeting will inwardly be applauding you.

Summarize the meeting. At the end of the meeting, quickly tick off a list of everything you have accomplished and resolved to do. Delegate tasks and make sure everyone is absolutely clear on what their individual responsibilities are. Don’t ask for “other business.” You’re just opening a can of worms. Remember, if it’s not on the agenda, it’s not going to be discussed.

End on time. If you want people’s attitude towards meetings to change, then they have to know they can trust them to start and end at the specified time. Your task as the leader is to set the pace and keep things moving so you accomplish your goals within the set time.

Follow up and make sure things gets done. This is just as important as the meeting itself. Remember, at the start of the next meeting, you’re going to have to summarize what was accomplished since the last one. You better have something to say.

Of course, if you’re not the leader, than there isn’t much you can do to curb meeting inanity. But meetings are a great place to show your potential leadership skills. Come on time, be prepared with good ideas, and hopefully you’ll soon be the guy standing at the top of the U.

What are some of your tips on the do’s and don’ts of running an effective and productive meeting? Share them with us in the comments!

Fort Wayne Site-of-the-Day

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Thursday, November 19, 2009

Video Time: Turkey Time

You might want to bookmark this one. Thanksgiving is next week:

Fort Wayne Site-of-the-Day

A new business is opening next week. Click here to go there.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Save, save, SAVE!

from the DLM blog:

Frugal Fun: Five Ways to Be Social and Save

Posted: 12 Nov 2009 02:02 PM PST

Living in San Francisco, one of the most expensive places in the country, I have learned a lot about budgets. First lesson: I need a budget. Recently, I kept track of my monthly expenditures and was shocked by the number in my “entertainment” column; no wonder my paychecks disappear so quickly.

There are obvious alternatives to nights on the town, like socializing at home. However, sometimes we’re obligated to go out—a friend’s birthday, for example, or the need to leave the house and indulge ourselves a little. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to cut corners and still have a good time without entertaining ourselves into debt.
  1. The credit card—leave home without it!
    It’s easy to go out with every intention of scrimping and saving, but it’s much harder to put those intentions into practice. If you have sufficient funds in the bank, the best thing to do is to withdraw a set amount of cash before you go out and leave the credit card at home. That way, you only spend what you can truly afford. (It feels pretty silly asking to borrow money for dessert or an extra drink.)

  2. They call it happy hour for a reason.
    People tend to go out to dinner or meet up later in the evening, especially on the weekends. Unfortunately, they’re missing some great deals courtesy of local bars and restaurants. Many places offer happy hours (which usually last at least two or three hours, despite the singular name) with food and drink deals like half-priced cocktails, 2-for-1 appetizers, cheap beer, etc. There’s no reason why the party can’t get started a little earlier. Just try to get there early to snag a seat as happy hour is becoming increasingly popular (and crowded) in these penny-pinching times.

  3. Dinner and drinks without loosening the purse strings.
    Dining out can be a difficult obstacle to staying within budget. Food and beverages are often overpriced and even if you order minimally, there’s a chance the rest of the group (who didn’t exercise such restraint) will want to split the bill. There are ways to get around this, though. First, consider ordering off the appetizer menu. It’s cheaper and the portions are much more reasonable. Another option is splitting an entrée with a friend—most main courses are enough for two people, or you can save half for tomorrow’s lunch. Keep an eye out for restaurant specials and coupons in the local paper, or go to and buy gift certificates to restaurants in your area for significantly reduced prices. (A $25 gift certificate for $10 is a frequent deal on their Web site.)

    Beverages have a high markup so choose your poison wisely. Water is the best bet, but if you’re craving something with more flavor (or alcohol), just know you may have to cut back on something else during the night. Speaking of alcoholic beverages, ever notice how some mixed drinks are more expensive than others? That’s because patrons pay for the alcohol content, not whatever mixers are included. Stick to drinks with only one kind of alcohol or pick a stronger drink that you can sip on through the night. (Long Island Iced Tea is a popular choice among frugal drinkers. It’s pricier, but one or two should do the trick.) Sticking to domestic beers and ordering “well drinks” (read: not top-shelf liquor) are two more ways to keep the spending to a minimum.

  4. Why pay for entertainment?
    Since moving to this pricey city, I’ve discovered the beauty of art show openings. They’re free, they happen at night, and there is usually a table of snacks and beverages to enjoy. (Hello, free dinner!) Plus, you’re introduced to new artists and their work. Check online or browse the local paper to see if any gallery shows or art walks are happening in your area.

    The Internet and newspaper are great sources for other events—concerts, book readings, community theater productions, shows at the local college, movie screenings—that are discounted or free. In fact, there are numerous Web sites and blogs dedicated to finding frugal forms of fun in various cities. Do a search online or read the calendar section of your city’s newspaper for updates on free or budget entertainment.

  5. Have fun without spending a dime (or spending just a few of them).
    Having fun with friends doesn’t necessitate a restaurant or club setting. There are lots of ways to spend time together and enjoy a night out without dipping into grocery funds. Creativity is the key. One night, my friends and I created and participated in a scavenger hunt downtown. It was fun and we met new people as a result—all with zero impact on our finances.

    If weather permits, try a nighttime neighborhood tour or take a hike and go stargazing. There’s no reason why being active should be relegated to daytime, as long as you travel in a big group and are mindful of your surroundings. Stick to the safer parts of the city and use your best judgment.

    Bowling, though not free, is another affordable alternative to a night out. You split the cost of lanes, the brew is cheap, and you spend a night perfecting your game (or if you’re me, perfecting just how skillfully the ball goes straight into the gutter).
Wallets may be lean, but that doesn’t mean we can’t occasionally enjoy ourselves. In fact, escaping the house to socialize with friends is what makes tough times bearable. It lends a sense of normalcy to our financially unstable realities. And, there are benefits to frugal entertainment, such as discovering activities in our cities that we might not have explored before. It requires a little effort—well, if you consider going online or opening a newspaper an effort—but the results can be surprisingly rewarding and not just for our bank accounts. Remember, it’s not being cheap—it’s being creative.

Written on 11/12/2009 by DivineCaroline. DivineCaroline a place where people come together to learn from experts in the fields of health, spending, and parenting. Come discover, read, learn, laugh, and connect at Credit: Laram777

Fort Wayne Site-of-the-Day

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Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Video Time: Bad Driver of the Week

Here's this weeks clip:

Fort Wayne Site-of-the-Day

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Monday, November 16, 2009


A good (old) friend of mine is turning 68 today. Last week I saw this on the Mens Journal website and wondered how much of it is true?

You Get Old

You Get Old
When I'm 68: The author, in his home office in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, June 9. Photo credit: John Loomis

For any man who has led a vibrant, robust life, the ­realities of aging can be humbling. But as the author has discovered, coming to terms with that is one of life’s great empowerments.

By Pat Jordan

You get old, life gets small. Not meager, pinched, just small. You don’t buy groceries for a week anymore — two hours in the Publix, drenched with purpose, a grocery list that unrolls like the Dead Sea scrolls.

You get old, you shop every day, your list written on the inside cover of a matchbook. Two pork chops, a can of La Sueur peas, four corns (two for tomorrow), two rolls of toilet paper.

You never buy mangoes, avocados, grapefruits, or key limes. You just go into your backyard and pick them off your tree. When you were young, your Uncle Ben retired to Sarasota and immediately sent you oranges from his tree. You thought, How sad. Now that you’re old, you send mangoes, avocados, grapefruits, and key limes to your friends. You enclose a note, very serious, explaining that key limes are not ripe when they’re green. “You must wait until they turn yellow!” you write. You get old, you become an expert on fruit.

You get old, people don’t notice you. You sit at a bar, sipping your Jim Beam Black, neat now, no water, no ice, when a pretty woman in her 40s sits next to you. You smile at her, say hi. She looks at you and through you around the bar.

You get old, young guys don’t get pissed off anymore that you’re lifting heavier weight than they are on the preacher-curl bench. Now they say, “You sure that weight isn’t too heavy for you, sir?” They used to call you Mack. When you were younger you would have said, “Mind your own goddamned business!” Now you say, “Thanks, guy, I think I can handle it.”

You get old, you lose your anger. It takes too much energy to be angry when you’re old. You have more important things to do with your waning energy, so you hoard it like a dwindling resource.

You get old, it’s not always about you. You no longer wait for an opening in a conversation to talk about yourself, your dreams, your accomplishments. It becomes second nature to draw other people into talking about their lives. You’re no longer the life of the party, making people laugh. You no longer have that neurotic compulsion to be known. Why should you? You get old, you know yourself.

You get old, you need less. Less food, less booze, less sex, less sleep. One Jim Beam Black after dinner, savored, so that it lasts until you fall asleep.

You get old, you wake at 4 am as if to catch every moment of your fading days. You struggle out of bed, let the dogs out, make coffee, light a cigar, then go out the front door for your newspapers. You sit on the front steps, sipping your coffee, smoking your cigar in the darkness until Jean Pierre, the Haitian paper deliverer, as black as a purple plum, pulls up in his Toyota. He sees you and gets out of the car. “Sorry, cher, da be late today,” he says, handing you the papers. “No problem, Jean Pierre.”

You get old, you eat dinner at 4 pm, with your wife. You talk about the day, then save half of each of your pork chops, wrapped in Saran wrap, for tomorrow’s dinner. Your refrigerator is stocked with leftovers. Susie wants to throw them out in a day or two, but you stop her, turn the wilting asparagus, the sautéed mushrooms, a few grape tomatoes into a lovely frittata for dinner. You get old, you hate to waste things.

You get old, you see your wife in her tight T-shirt with the words ‘It’s Not Pretty Being Easy’ scripted across her breasts, and you get an idea. But it’s only three o’clock in the afternoon, so you file it away for future reference. When you were young, you’d put that idea into action anytime, anyplace. Now you talk about it with her, make plans for sex. She puts on her silk negligee before she gets in bed. Then you both begin watching Ballykissangel, getting so caught up in it (will Father Peter leave the priesthood and marry Assumpta?) that the next thing you know you’re waking up at 4 am.

You get old, your dogs get old too. It never dawned on you, when you got them, all six, one year after another, that they’d all get old, one year after another, and then die. Now they’re between 10 and 16 years old. Their lives are bounded by food and sleep and all the pills they take, which are lined up on the kitchen counter with yours. Glucosamine and chondroitin for their arthritic joints. Carprofen for their dislocated knees. You see them limping and press their knees back into place. They glance back at you with gratitude. You give them phenobarbital to forestall their epileptic seizures. Ciproflaxacin for their rheumy coughs and sneezes. They wake in the morning with you and begin to wheeze, sneeze, cough, like old men, like you. They have their good days and bad days, like you. You just try to keep them alive for a few more months, then a few months after that. And when they begin to die before your eyes, you feed them water and baby food through a big plastic syringe at first, and then fluids subcutaneously with a needle before that final visit to the vet.

You get old, you set goals for yourself that seem meaningless to others. Not to you. They are proof that you’re not that old. Your wife asks you to “call the man” to break up the old sidewalk in the backyard so she can plant liriope. You tell her you’ll do it yourself. She says, “Don’t be foolish.” You get the sledgehammer and begin whacking at the sidewalk in the summer heat like Cool Hand Luke. Then you wheelbarrow the broken pieces of concrete out to the front swale for the garbageman. Two days later, you can’t get out of bed.

You get old, your strength and stamina go. You mow the lawn, then lie down. Your wife comes home with ten 40-pound bags of mulch. You carry them into the backyard, then lie down. You get old, you can’t do everything in one day — wash the car, mow the lawn, shop for groceries, go to the gym, get a haircut. So you plan out your day like Eisenhower planning D-day. Two things, maybe three, one day, then two more the next.

You get old, you become abstemious. You never buy clothes for yourself anymore. You wear your faded Hawaiian shirts until they’re so threadbare they’re like filmy curtains. You trim little threads with a scissors. One day your wife throws one out. You moan, “But that was my favorite shirt!” She says, “Hoarding is a sign of old age.” You sulk like a child the rest of the day.

You get old, you get your hair cut at Supercuts, $12 for seniors, and then let it grow for two months until it’s curling over your ears and you look like a French diplomat. You were young, you went to a fancy salon, where the pretty blonde massaged your shoulders while cutting your hair, for $65 and a $20 tip. You get old, your wife says, “You’re not going out like that!” You say, “What?” You are wearing a ripped and paint-splattered University of Miami Hurricanes T-shirt, baggy shorts, and flip-flops. You haven’t trimmed your beard in days. You look like Jeremiah Johnson, if he lived in South Florida.

You used to wear $200 Tommy Bahama island shirts and $2,000 ostrich-skin cowboy boots when you went out. Your wife wore spandex minidresses and six-inch pumps. You looked like a successful drug smuggler with a high-priced hooker. You get old, you sell your cowboy boots to a thrift shop for $50 and buy the dogs new collars. You get old, your looks go. You don’t care.

You were handsome once, like a Greek god, with curly black locks and luxuriant chest hair. You still are, in your mind’s eye, even if your hair is so white you look like a ghost in photographs. You look at that photograph of an old man, and say out loud, “Jeez, I look like an old man!” Your friends call back, “You are an old man.” A young friend of your wife’s, maybe 35, picks up a photograph of you when you were 38 off the fireplace mantel. “Wow,” she says. “You were hot once.” You resist the urge to tell her, “I still am.”

You get old, small things give you pleasure that were once an annoyance. Throwing out the garbage, you meet a neighbor walking his dog. You pet his dog, pass the time. The mailman stops at your mailbox. He talks to you about his Brazilian girlfriend, then hands you the mail. Bills, a check, and — eureka! — four movies from Netflix.

You get old, you realize order is freedom. You do your job more professionally, no longer on the fly. You get a magazine assignment — go down 1,500 feet into a coal mine in Virginia, climb a mountain in Haiti — and you prepare for it. You do heavier squats the days before you leave. You fly out the night before your interview so that you will have time to settle yourself, prepare. You get old, you check into a no-tell motel close to the thruway ramp so you have easy access to anyplace you have to go. When you were young you stayed at the best hotels, with pissing Cupid fountains in the lobby and businesswomen on the make in the bar. The first thing you did after you checked in was change your clothes and hit the bar with your barroom smile. Now you go to Denny’s for a snack. Then you go back to the hotel and put your clothes in the dresser drawers and lay out all your notes on the desk so you can review them the next morning before your interview.

You get old, you realize your job these past 40 years was God’s gift. When you were young, you thought you were God’s gift.

You get old, you forget things, not because your mind is going, but because your memory box is filled. A name comes up and you find yourself mentally flipping through all those thousands of slides, trying to place the name with a face or an event. You forget trivial things — where you put the car keys, your glasses — because your mind is filled with more important things. Is the gate in the backyard secured so the dogs won’t get out into the street and get hit by a car? You never forget that.

You get old, you scream at your wife. Not in anger, but because your hearing’s going. “What?” you scream. She looks exasperated. She says loudly, “I said….” You now see the world in a faint haze, like it’s covered with a gauzy film. “Pollen,” you say. Your wife says, “You need stronger glasses.” You refuse to admit that. So you call the Comcast TV repairman once a week. He arrives, a young black kid. “The picture’s blurry,” you say. “And the sound, I have to jack it way up to hear.” He fiddles with the remote, then says, “The picture’s fine. The sound, too. Maybe you need glasses.” You stop calling the Comcast repairman.

You get old, you sell your 1989 Taurus SHO with the five-speed, short-throw shifter, the Recaro racing seats, lowered suspension, rear spoiler, 19-inch mag wheels. You buy a Lincoln LS8, with leather, a wood-trimmed dash, automatic.

You get old, you read the obits. You call out to your wife, “Jeez, Isaac Hayes died! He was an old man, I guess.” Your wife calls back, “About the same age as you.”

You get old, your friends are old too. Old ladies, mostly. Why not? You’re an old man. Betsy, 59, Ina, 65, Julia, 76, Helen, 78. You drive Helen to work when her ride is late. You drive Betsy to the airport at 7 am for a flight to visit her sister. Later, your friend John, 58, knocks on your door. He’s going to visit friends in Wisconsin. Will you feed his cats while he’s gone? Sure, why not?

You get old, your dreams constrict. You no longer expect fame and fortune, your face on the cover of Time. You no longer expect to write the Great American Novel, 859 pages. Your writing gets small. Fewer words. But cleaner, you hope. More nuance, less obvious. Subtle, you like to think. Like your life. Small essays about getting old. They please you just as much as if you wrote War and Peace.

You get old, you cry more. Not over your lost dreams, your sins, your old age, your impending death. You cry for others. You cry when Assumpta dies too young, at 30, in Ballykissangel. You cry at the sight of our soldiers in camouflage walking through airports on their way to Iraq. You cry at the sight of abused dogs and cats staring at you from the pages of newspapers. You cry when Betsy tells you she has inoperable cancer and she’ll never see 60.

You cry for everyone but yourself because you have lived a wonderful life, and you wish that every person, every pet, could live such a life too. When you were young, you cried only for yourself.


This article originally appeared in the September 2009 issue of Men’s Journal.

Fort Wayne Site-of-the-Day

The Media Monday theme continues with a story.

In the summer of 1976, I took a class at my high school that prepared me to get licensed by the Federal Communications Commission to operate a radio station. There were about 35 or so students who took the class that summer and the reward would be an opportunity to be on the air at the new radio station our school was launching.

When the F.C.C. came to town to administer the test, only 1/2 the students passed. I was one of them. I was also the only who still worked in the radio business 5 years later. (Also 30 years later!)

The radio station launched 33 years ago at 88.3 FM has changed hands a few times, and if you click here, you'll see what they are doing now.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Change Your Diet

From my email:

7 Healthy Foods That Will Fill You Up and Prevent Overeating

Posted: 13 Nov 2009 07:26 AM PST

David A. Kessler, the author of “The End of Overeating”, explains very well how people become addicted to foods that are high in sugar, fat and salt. Like addiction does, this causes people to crave so they eat more and more foods that are loaded with unhealthy ingredients and many times, completely devoid of any nutrients.

So, as the process goes, people are instructed to stop eating sugar, fat, and salt. However, many times, those instructions are not supplemented with healthy replacements and it's left to you to do the research, which is no simple task. As Michael Pollan says in “In Defense of Food”, scientists and the food media keep things much too complicated for the average person and this confusion keeps people trapped in a fat body.

So let's boil this down. There are nutrient-filled foods that will keep you full for a long time and quite easy to find at any local grocery store. If you eat these better quality foods, you won’t need to overeat and frankly, you may not be as tempted by the glazed donuts that Marcy brought into the office.

Here are a handful of the foods that we are talking about. Where are these in your diet today? Are any of them included? Is anyone snacking on all of these each week?
  1. Banana
    What a great fruit! Not only are bananas available year-round, they are fairly inexpensive. If you reach out for a banana when you feel hungry instead of an empty calorie snack, you’ll nourish your body and you’ll be ingesting way less fat and sugar than many snacks.

    Elsewhere: 6 Awesome Health Benefits Of Bananas, Whole Foods' Lowdown on Bananas

  2. Eggs
    As long as you’re not eating 12 of them in one week, eggs are good for you. Eggs are an excellent source of protein and protein is the “real diet secret” because foods high in protein will keep you full longer. In fact, Prevention Magazine recently revealed the finding of a study that showed that eating two eggs for breakfast helped women lose 65% more weight and decreased their waistlines 83% more than women who didn't!

  3. Almonds
    Dr. Mehmet Oz might be the one responsible for popularizing the idea that nuts and almonds are such an important snack foods. Almonds are rich in monounsaturated fatty acids and protein. Just one handful of almonds will keep you full for a long time because they are great at suppressing appetite.

  4. Avocados
    Avocados are so misunderstood. So many people avoid them because they think they are fattening. I’ve been following The Biggest Loser Season 8 and I’ve rejoiced many times when trainer Bob or Jillian advise the participants to include ½ avocado at lunch time because it contains good fats (monounsaturated fatty acids) and it contains protein that will fill you up nicely. Not only can you add avocados to salads, but they are great as a spread on sandwiches and you can even add them to a smoothie!

  5. Peanut butter
    You can easily find peanut butter that contains only 100% roasted peanuts (you can buy the organic and non-organic kinds). In other words there are no hydrogenated oils, sugar or salt added to the peanut butter. This is a healthy option compared to conventional peanut butter and the price is not much different.

    Peanut butter is full of protein and honestly it’s such a convenient food. You can spread some peanut on toast or crackers and you know that you’ll be full for many hours to come! It’s true that peanuts are high in fat, but they contain mono-unsaturated fats, which are good fats!

  6. Oatmeal
    Oatmeal is under-appreciated in my opinion. I like hot oatmeal during the colder months of the year and I’ll always grind a few tablespoons of oatmeal to include in my morning breakfast smoothie. Oatmeal is a great super food because it's low in sugar, high in fiber and it’s so quick to prepare. It’s only takes 5-10 minutes to prepare your oatmeal and you’ll be full for hours after eating a bowl. Here’s another great thing about a bowl of oatmeal: you can let your creativity run wild and you can top your oatmeal with pretty much anything!

  7. Apples
    Apples are full of fiber. There is a reason why your mother told you repeatedly that “one apple a day keeps the doctor away”. It might sound clichéd, but packing an apple for your daily snack will not only add one fruit/vegetable portion to your daily recommended intake (it’s recommend that you consume 5-10 fruits and vegetables a day), but the fiber will fill up your stomach and you won’t be so obsessed with food.
Written on 11/13/2009 by Krizia. Krizia (aka MissK) is an international author of an acclaimed food guide and she’s also a former self-taught personal chef. Krizia’s approach to healthy eating is about keeping it simple, approachable and REAL! In June 2009, two months after launching Eat Smart Age Smart, Krizia was awarded with the nomination of ‘Top 200 Health Blogger’ in the Healthy Eating category by Well Sphere.Photo Credit: rhosoi

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