Archive | January, 2011

How to Eat Healthy in College! Our Interview with Daphne Oz, author of Dorm Room Diet. Read on to win a free copy of her book!

21 Jan

We were so impressed with all the easy- to- understand and relatable information in this book that we we had to share it with the WORLD!

We recently had the pleasure of interviewing author Daphne Oz (daughter of Dr. Oz), about her dorm-room-self. Her responses are below.

1. What inspired you to write Dorm Room Diet?

People find it difficult to understand how I could have been so overweight growing up, given that I was part of a medical family with access to all the information I would have needed to get my health on track. What I realized as part of the process of finally recovering my health while in college is that, oftentimes, the emotional component can be even more important than the physical information.

As my dad always likes to say: “People don’t change their behavior based on what they know, they change based on what they feel.”

That was certainly true for me. It took recognizing that college marked the beginning of my adult life–and, more importantly, that I wanted my adult self to have optimum health so I could accomplish anything–to spark the change that would lead me towards a permanent, healthy lifestyle and make it possible for me to put the information I had had my whole life to good use. I wrote the Dorm Room Diet to share the tips and tricks I had developed throughout this process so that my peers looking for a friendly, accessible voice to guide them on their journeys to health would have a one-stop manual.

2. What’s your favorite healthy meal?

I’m a huge fan of vegetarian chili–it has lots of protein in the bean and legume varieties (I add lentils to mine!), some complex carbs if you put it over brown rice, and that great spicy, tomato sauce flavor. Perfect for fall days!

3. What’s your favorite junk food?

I’m a sucker for pretzels and chocolate chip cookies, and I love banana pudding. Everything in moderation, though!

4. If you could talk to your dorm room self what would you say?

Remember to plan ahead! It’s the only tool you need to succeed. If you can crowd out all the “bad” junk foods with healthy items on hand, you’ll be that much less tempted to go off your healthy eating plan. Set yourself up for success!

5. What’s your motto?

“Substitution where you can, Moderation where you cant.”

What this means is, if you’re happy to have an apple instead of the stale, store-brought brownie you’ve been eyeing, that’s a great way to cut down on sugars and processed carbohydrates. But if you’re out at a friend’s birthday party, don’t skimp on a small piece of birthday cake, or even just a bite, just so you can say you didn’t have any. The whole point of a healthy lifestyle is that there is room for anything, so you never need to feel deprived–which is why healthy lifestyles last permanently while fad diets are only a race against the clock until you “fail” and go on a binge of all the things you haven’t been allowing yourself.

Make room for the experiences you know will help you feel like you’ve been able to share and have fun, but be sure to keep unhealthy eating in check by remembering to “indulge for a good cause” (as in, only eat those foods you know you are really going to enjoy, and make them count!).

6. What do you do when you’re having a bad day?

For so many years, emotional eating was a crutch for me, as it is for so many. It’s hard to give up the comfort foods, and it’s still tempting to drive into a chocolate bar if I’ve had a bad day, or even if I want to celebrate (emotional eating works both ways!).

But what I’ve found is the most helpful is to take a few minutes to write down exactly what is bothering me or making me upset, to talk it out with someone I love or whose opinion I trust, and then, if I’m still feeling down, to go out for a long walk or jog, ideally with someone else. Socializing is the best cure for the blues, because it forces you to feel good when you’re in good company.

7. Does your dad have a cure for Bieber fever?

Ha, I don’t think anyone would take it!

8. You’re the oldest of four. Do your sisters come to you a lot for advice? Do you have any advice for girls?

I’m thrilled to say I do think my two (younger) sisters come to me for advice, for health and other things. I think my main advice for girls would be to keep everything in perspective. Friends change, boyfriends change, schools change…don’t put too much pressure or focus or importance on anything that is likely to change in the next year, if not the next couple weeks or months. Just enjoy every minute as best you can, and be sure to get any toxic people out of your life asap! Especially if you’re trying to create a healthy lifestyle, curating an environment that facilitates healthy, balanced emotional health is just as important as getting your physical health on track.

To recap:

  1. Go buy Dorm Room Diet…like now.
  2. Submit a question to our blog @ and keep your fingers crossed to win a free copy.
  3. Check out more about Dorm Room Diet and Daphne Oz @ Dorm Room Diet

My Best Friend is Dating a Total Douche. HELP!

4 Jan

Dear Losers,

My best friend is dating a total douchebag! What do I do??

Kate, 16

Dear Reader,

Ah yes. There is no way to avoid it. No matter how hard you try and surround yourself with quality people, or how successful you think you are at this venture, you will lose at least one great friend to douchedom. Yes, I think at least one out of six girlfriends is lost to a douchebag. And that is a conservative estimate based on no actual facts. So here’s the plan:

Step 1: Find a new best friend.

Step 2: Find that new best friend a boyfriend YOU like.

Not one that you like like, but one that you like enough to hang out with! And one that has cute friends.

Pretty simple right?

Wrong. UNFORTUNATELY, we can’t pick who our friends date. While friends are the family we pick for ourselves, friend’s boyfriends are not.

I know. Could life be more unfair?!?!

There are times I wish this weren’t true too.

Oh, excuse me, I’ve just been informed that all my friends read this blog in which case, I’m obviously not talking about your boyfriend, (insert friend’s name).

Back to my point. You’re friends are going to date SO many douches it will make your head spin. You will think, did I do something to deserve this? Did I raise them wrong? Was it something I said?!

But don’t forget, you’re someone’s friend too which means in a moment of weakness, you might have dated a douche or two yourself. Or even better, a raging douche may be somewhere in your near future! So don’t go getting high and mighty.

I think it’s helpful to hone in on why you don’t like your friend’s boyfriend. We’ll call him, Danny. Danny Douche. There are a few different classifications of douche, and the sooner you can differentiate between them the better.

The Stage 1 Douche:

Does he just annoy you a little bit (or a lot bit)? Then he is a Stage 1 Douche. He may not be considered a douche by anyone, but you. You might tell someone he is a douche and they will be like “WHAT?! Danny? Danny Douche?! I love him!”

What are ya gonna do.

Remember that because he’s dating your friend you are going to be more critical of him. You might even be overly critical and unfairly see him as a douche.

Or maybe you think he’s a douche because he’s just not your type.  Maybe he’s a metrosexual city guy, and you like a guy that can paint a house and chop down a tree.

Or he’s a jock and you prefer a theatre nerd.

If he’s not the type of boyfriend you would choose for yourself or your friend, that might be a good thing. We shouldn’t all like the same type of guy. That would be creepy. And problematic. And the plotline of most shows on the CW.

The Stage 3 Douche:

Is he, at times, mean or rude to your friend or to others? Incredibly obnoxious, stingy or inconsiderate of people’s feelings?  Lacking in a sense of humor, easily offended or always looking to start a fight?

This is a very legitimate reason to cry Douche. Stage 3 Douche to be exact. But remember, your friend likes him, so you can’t just speak freely about how lame he is like he is the weird gym teacher. He’s her boyfriend. Anything you say that insults him, may also insult her. You can’t just insert your true feelings into a normal lunch conversation like,

“Wow this pizza is GREASY! Oh and your boyfriend is a raging douche! Please pass the napkins.”

Interruption for PSA:  If you feel your friend is in some sort of danger, that her boyfriend is creepy in a criminal sort of way, speak up and step in. This may seem like common sense, but when you’re in a relationship, you don’t see the red flags like everyone else does. If she seems like she is being physically or emotionally abused, speak up immediately. I would call this a Stage 7 douche, but really this is just a dangerous person. “Douche” does not do someone like this justice. Back to your scheduled programming.

If he is just your standard, but authentic douche,  she will have problems with him sooner rather than later. And she will come to you to talk about it. Perfect! This is your opportunity to be honest about why you don’t like him for her. But don’t go off-topic, insulting his faux hawk, or high-pitched voice.

And especially don’t go calling him names like, I don’t know, Douche. That is a last resort, a worst-case scenario wake-up call. Stay on the topic of what she is complaining about. Emphasize that she does not deserve to be mistreated and that his (douchey) behavior is unacceptable.

If she doesn’t come crying to you, but you know he is a Stage 3 bad boyfriend then do talk to her about it. Friends don’t let friends date douchebags. Well, not without talking to them about it, anyway.

If you’re lucky, she will talk to him, he will shape up, and you will start to like him. If you’re luckier, they will break up!

The Stage 5 Douche:

If you are unlucky, nothing will change, they will date for years and you will end up the Lauren Conrad to their Heidi and Spencer relationship.

Or the Khloe to their Kourtney and Scott. And this is where a Stage 3 douche develops into a Stage 5. A Stage 5 douche is a chronic douche. His girlfriend has given him many chances to be a better boyfriend, but he  is no longer dabbling in douchiness, it’s now a full blown addiction. And against her better judgment, she sticks around. If that’s the case, it’s up to you. You can make it clear you don’t like the way he treats her and that it’s difficult to be around him, which could strain your relationship with your friend. You can even tell her you don’t know how to help her if she can’t help herself.

But just like you can’t pick your friend’s boyfriend, you can’t make him go away either. So take careful notes so you too don’t end up with a Stage 5 douche.