Higher Gas Prices Affect Dieting: DINING IN Provides Healthy Fuel To Combat Economic Dieting and Health Pitfalls

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With escalating gas prices and food prices people are scrambling for options to stretch a buck. Dining out is attractive but in the end can cost more than dining in. With no time to cook and groceries getting expensive, DINING IN, San Francisco's fastest growing premier personal chef service has become the Bay area's answer to saving time, money, calories and improving overall health during stressful times.

- The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Western Information Office reports gas prices are 15.5 percent higher from last year, as prices for food away from home increased 3.7 percent. With the added 4% health insurance charge added to tax and tip for dining out, most busy Bay area professionals are turning to fast food with no time to cook , while looking for a way to save money. DINING IN - San Francisco Bay Area's fastest growing premier personal chef service has become the solution for those who are challenged juggling money, time, lifestyle, their diet and their grocery bills in a changed economy. Rising gas prices make life challenging for Bay area residents who drive more. They are sacrificing healthy eating to compensate for fuel costs. Already delivering to all of San Francisco, East Bay, Oakland, the Peninsula, Menlo Park, Palo Alto and Marin, DINING IN has tripled business in the last three years. DINING IN's healthy, fresh, calorie-conscious, organic food delivery service has recently expanded delivery to San Jose, Sunnyvale, Santa Clara, Campbell and Los Gatos homes and offices. This extended service outreach enables people to make better eating choices.

"As prices rise for food, gas and luxury items, it is important that people don't skimp on taking care of their health. At the end of the day - it is our health that allows us to work so hard, keep up with the daily demands, enjoy life and feel great. Given that the costs of food is steadily rising about 15% up from last year, DINING IN makes sure that you eat a healthy meal and no money goes to waste! The best thing about our service is that each entree is portioned per person, so there is no throwing away rotting food, cooking too much and never eating it or spending an excessive amount on take-out,' states DINING IN Founder/Executive Chef Traci Higgins.

According to a 2005-2006 U.S. Census Bureau study, San Francisco spends $7,942 annually on food - which is higher than Los Angeles, Phoenix, Seattle and San Diego for cities in the West, with the average American purchasing fast food 16 days per month. Over the latest 12-month period, prices for medical care services advanced 5.2 percent an indication that fast food is NOT the right economical or healthier answer. DINING IN's mission is to keep the Bay area healthy with portion control, fresh ingredients and special attention to nutritious menus. By creating healthier food choices which also enhance time management and lifestyle, DINING IN is all about helping their clients with quality living.

"When I first started the service I was trying to save money by ordering less food. I realized that I spent more money going to the grocery store to buy food than I would have otherwise, and it was rarely good for me. I decided the purchasing a few extra meals per week is actually saving me money," states Courtney Hahn, DINING IN client and director of a collection agency.

Passionate about healthy eating and a healthy lifestyle, Chef Higgins will be participating in the AVON Breast Cancer Walk in San Francisco July 12-13th.    Her healthful mission continues with education and demonstration. She will be doing free cooking demonstrations Saturday July 26, 2008 at Williams-Sonoma Union Square (340 Post Street, SF - 415-362-9450). Her upbeat cooking demonstration, HEALTHY MEALS IN MINUTES will feature Chef Higgins demonstrating fresh and healthful ways of cooking 12 Noon-1 p.m. and an encore presentation 1:00-2:00 p.m.

As a working wife and mother herself, Chef Higgins knows how important it is eat right and balance time and nutrition for optimum productivity. "Once I get my daughter out the door I make a list of priorities for the day. I go down the list one by one and crossing them out feels great. I try to go to the gym from 4-5 pm, pick up my daughter and then we all heat up our DINING IN meals at 6:30. We play for a few hours then off to bed early. I feel horrible if I do not exercise and do not eat a balanced diet. The first thing to go is my energy! I save about 8 hours a week by having my meals made. I do not have to go to the grocery store more than once a week, (saves gas); never have to cook (saves energy) or do dishes (saves water). Eating well makes me able to keep up the demands in my life! (saves time)," explains Higgins.

Chef Higgins is a multi-hyphenate entrepreneurial business woman, Executive Chef, Speaker, Culinary Instructor, Health Educator & Advocate, who has worked in the test kitchens of Cooking Light, Weight Watchers, America's Best Recipes and on the television show "Follow That Food" with Gordon Elliott for the Food Network. Higgins has traveled the country performing cooking demonstrations and insightful lectures on health and wellness to doctors, dietitians, health professionals and nurses and has been active in many diabetes educational forums and conferences. She is credited in three cookbooks.

Saving time, money and calories is not only a positive lifestyle change, but one that is also changing in positive ways at DINING IN. More exciting new menu options will continue to be launched this summer.    DINING IN is also offering kid-friendly menus for busy families but will be expanding its menus to include The Daily Diet to launch in July - an "all-inclusive" diet program for those serious about weight loss. The program includes breakfast, lunch, dinner and two snacks, all within a particular caloric range and fat content.

For interviews, please contact Publicist, Stacey Kumagai, Media Monster 818-506-8675, and mediamonster(at)yahoo.com. For more information on DINING IN's time-saving healthy food service, go to http://www.dininginsf.com. Join DINING IN's MySpace network at http://www.myspace.com/dininginsf

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