In the Kitchen with Danielle Schupp

By Fabiana Santana

Danielle SchuppBikini season is here again and depending on your prep work, that could be a good thing or a very bad one. Either way, registered dietitian and author of  Urban Skinny: Live the Fabulous Life–and Still Zip Up Your Favorite Jeans Danielle Schupp has some tips and tricks for staying healthy and getting skinny this summer.

Once upon a time, someone started a rumor that the only way to stay skinny, especially in a city like New York where crossing the street corners are literally a test of will power, was to eat bland, boring foods. In the past month lobster roll AND french fry trucks have popped up all over the place, parking themselves along side the mini cupcake wagon and dessert treats truck. So trading all that in for a bag of mini carrots is a hard task for any city girl. Enter Urban Skinny, Danielle Schupp’s answer to living the glamorous life and looking like you do, too. Every woman can find herself in this book. Maybe you are Laura from chapter 7 who generally ate healthy and hit the gym five times a week but still gained 10 pounds over the course of six months.  Or maybe you can relate to Gillian, a 44 year old super social single girl who could eat anything she wanted…until she hit her late thirties that is.

Urban Skinny: Live the Fabulous Life--and Still Zip Up Your Favorite Jeans by Danielle SchuppWhile every scenario is different, the science for all of the women in the book – and for you – is simple: calories in, calories out. Danielle helps her clients keep track of their calories with a food log and even gives them tips on how to order when eating out. Hitting a Thai restaurant for dinner with the girls? Skip the coconut milk based soups and sauces and instead choose something with a curry sauce, but ask for it on the side or bring your own slotted spoon for serving. Yes, you will get stares, but if you follow the program, it won’t be just for the spoon.

Curry is a spice and alone it contains no calories, but with that coconut milk broth, it can be a diet killer. So serve yourself the all the veggies you want along with some protein and you will get the flavor from the sauce, but the majority of it will sink right back into the serving dish.  As for apps, choose things like veggie summer rolls that are steamed or clear broths like lemongrass soup.

She’s got dinner at the Italian restaurant, Chinese joint and even included a section on ordering takeout in the deli covered, so you are never left guessing what is safe and what will sabotage your diet.

“Make your calories yummy calories so you’re satisfied,”she writes on her blog. “One client of mine went hardcore on January 1st, stuffing her face (her words) with lettuce and chicken and veggies and water. By the end of the first week, she had a huge problem. Her cravings were kicking in – she wanted something that tasted good and so she spent a day overeating – not because she was hungry, but because she’d deprived herself all week.”

The trick, she explained at the Reebok Sports Club where she works as a nutrition counselor, is to snaz up your snacks with energy providing foods and to eat them often and in the right amounts. But since most of us don’t have time in the mornings to brush our teeth let alone count out the number of dark chocolate dusted almonds that will get us through the daily 3pm sugar cravings, she developed a line of snacks  called Smart & Skinny that takes the guess work out of snacking for us.

Each hormone-free SMART&SKINNY SNACK contains 200 calories packed with a balance of high-fiber carbohydrates, lean protein and heart healthy fat.  So why 200 calories?

Urban Skinny-Food Log“You need a snack when going 3 to 4 hours without eating. That’s when your blood sugar starts to fall and hunger kicks in. A 200-calorie snack is just the right amount to satisfy hunger and boost energy levels. Whether you are stuck on a conference call and can’t get out to eat lunch (don’t you just hate when that happens), in need of an afternoon snack to satisfy a craving or in need of a pre-workout snack, SMART&SKINNY SNACK will do the trick!”

And every pack contains one functional food, or a super food that that has health benefits beyond nutrition. Those almonds we mentioned? They contain Vitamin E & monounsaturated fats, which may reduce the risk of heart disease. And the dark chocolate they are dusted with contains flavanols  – power antioxidants that may improve cardvascular health by increasing blood flow & reducing overall blood pressure.

“No foods are forbidden. Just watch your portions and stay within your calorie budget. Calorie budgets and how to spend your calories are in the first 3 chapters of Urban Skinny. And as you make your way through January, don’t aim to be perfect, just aim to be consistent so you can continue your Urban Skinny life beyond week one.”

Here are some more skinny tricks from Danielle that will help you get, and stay, in your bikini all summer long.

What are ideal, energy foods to keep on hand in your gym bag or purse for on the go snacking?
I always like to carry protein bars, fruits or veggies in a ziplock bag, yogurt drinks or even a bagel. This would hold me over for a while until I have a full meal.

A busy woman might only have 30 minutes for exercise. Is that enough?
I understand busy women have very little time to exercise and I believe thirty minutes is better than nothing. thirty minutes a day everyday does help, if someone is consistent in certain activities everyday it can go a long way.

What are some fitness tricks/tips a woman can do at the office without getting stared at?
Walking on your tippy toes can work on the calve muscles.

What’s better: meal before or after a workout?
The meals are better for after you worked out. When someone workouts, the body needs to immediately replace the nutrients it lose. I think it also helps to drink two cups of water right before the meal so I don’t overeat and not get that full feeling.

Remember, in order to get fuel from your snack you have to allow time for your body to digest it.  Just because you eat something doesn’t mean you get energy from it instantly.  Food needs to be digested, absorbed and metabolized before it is converted to a form that our bodies can use for fuel.

Post-workout, you can have a snack or a meal depending on what time you finish.  If you did the 6 am workout, then follow with a balanced breakfast shortly after. My fav breakfast:  chobani yogurt, paired with 100% whole wheat cinnamon raisin toast topped with peanut butter.  It contains both protein and carbohydrates to replenish your energy stores.


A chocolate craving comes along…what’s a girl to do?
ANSWER IT!!  If you don’t answer a craving it will only come back 10 fold. I specifically created CHERRY BOMB one of my SMART&SKINNY  SKINNYMIX flavors for the chocolate lovers.   I typically will insist that my clients listen to what their bodies are telling them.  It’s ok to have chocolate, especially dark chocolate which is packed with antioxidants, simply limit the portion size to 200 calories.  Remember, there are no “good” or “bad” foods, just “good” and “bad” portions.  The key is portion control.  Some women try to avoid eating chocolate and substitute it with other “healthier” options, but they end up eating more calories than if they just went ahead and gave themselves permission to indulge.

What is your go to healthy breakfast on the go?
My healthy breakfast on the go is instant oatmeal with fruit. It does not take long to prepare, it good and healthy.

What is your favorite make at home, eat alone meal?
Blueberry pancakes!

If you want to reach Danielle for a consultation, you can contact her via the above Urban Skinny websites or write/call her at : 917-376-6976,