One Expense We Should NOT Be Paying!

One of my favorite resources for the newest research and information in nutrition is the NY Times.  On September 27, 2010 the New York Times posted this report: Obesity Costs Women More.  The CDC estimates that Americans spend about $147 billion a year on the direct and indirect costs of obesity.  The report by researchers at GWU caught my attention because they break down the costs to the individual level, showing that obese women have double the annual expenses as their male counterparts.  This doesn’t even take into consideration health costs down the road (such as medications for Type 2 Diabetes, Hypertension, Hypercholesterolemia, etc). 

As we all know and hear, the rates of overweight and obese Americans are steadily climbing, and we need to take action now! I love Michelle Obama’s campaign against childhood obesity: Let’s Move! because it encourages physical activity and healthy food choices, as well as demands action on the community and political levels.

Pumpkin Pie Oat Bars

I’m starting this blog right at the beginning of my favorite season: FALL! There are many reasons to love fall, not the least of which is the FOOD!  Apples, pumpkins, squash, and most root vegetables are at their freshest and most delicious right now!

Since one of my favorite things to do is modify recipes to make them more healthy and nutritious, I recently created a new verison of a typical pumpkin pie recipe.  Check it out below and try it for yourselves!

Pumpkin Pie Oat Bars

1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 cup whole-wheat flour
3/4 cup rolled oats
1 egg + 2 egg whites
3/4 cup white sugar
1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin
1 (12 fluid ounce) can non-fat evaporated milk
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. In a large bowl, combine butter and brown sugar.  Add in flour and oats.  Press oat mixture into 9X13 baking pan.
3.  Bake oat crust for 20 minutes until slightly brown.
4. In a large bowl, combine eggs and sugar.  Mix in pumpkin and evaporated milk. 
5. Add salt, cinnamon, ginger and cloves to pumpkin pie filling. 
6.  Pour filling over pre-baked oat crust.
7. Bake for 20 minutes at 350 degrees.  Let cool and serve. 

*Makes 24 pumpkin pie oat bar squares!