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Nutrition and wellness is tasteful

  • Exercise

    Exercise is a benefit to every part of the body--mind included.

    Exercise makes you look better, lose weight, and lowers your risk of many chronic diseases, and slows down aging.

  • Healthy children, healthy life

    "You don't have to cook fancy or complicated masterpieces--just good food from fresh ingredients."
    --Julia Child

    "If we're not willing to settle for 'junk living,' we shouldn't settle for junk food."
    --Sally Edwards

  • Food is medicine

    "Let medicine be thy food, and food be thy medicine."

    "Don't eat anything your great grandmother wouldn't recognize as food."
    --Michael Pollen

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

8 Foods to Add to Your Grocery List

The following are 8 different foods you can pick up at the grocery store next time you are

It can be so confusing to see what foods are the best ones to eat and which ones you should
avoid. But, hard to go wrong with the following 8 food recommendations from nutritionists...

1) Cauliflower: Low calorie, immunity builder, cancer prevention, and more...

2) Avocados: Healthy fat, full of antioxidants and a superfood.

3) Almond Milk: Full of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.

4) Water: The sustainer of life. Water is essential for many things; namely regulation of body temperature, lubricant for joints, good for blood flow, regulates blood pressure and more...

5) Cinnamon: Helps with blood regulation and an immunity builder.

6) Coconut oil: Improves blood cholesterol levels and helps maintain weight.

7) Beans: Full of fiber, minerals and vitamins.

8) Quinoa: Contains fiber, protein and plenty of iron.

9 Healthier Swaps for your Favorite Junkfoods

It really is amazing to see how ingrained our habits really are -- especially when it comes
to those default foods that we crave from time to time. I mean do most people like crispy
french fries or pizza -- of course they do...and so do I. But, the following food swaps are
healthier and just better for you in the long run. Enjoy the recipes...

9 Healthy Swaps for your favorite junk foods

Friday, July 18, 2014

Article: Back to the Kitchen: Escaping Processed Food

Upon reading this article, it did prompt me to think about how our culture, economy, environ-
ment and our food has changed over the decades.

It is astounding to me that the following statistic is true: "Processed food (as opposed to whole ingredients that must be cooked) accounts for 80 percent of food sold in the United States, in
terms of profit. The USDA says we eat 31 percent more packaged food than fresh food, in
terms of volume."
How we've changed! Ken Albala does a wonderful job in detailing the compelling reasons
why it is so important to re-learn those skills -- the skill of cooking -- for various reasons.

For one, he discusses how there has been an abundant interest in food over the past couple of
decades with cookbooks and cooking shows, but has that intimidated people from cooking?
Has cooking been cast off as a chore or too difficult to do or too time-consuming? Somewhere
down the line, with the industrialization of food and economic changes in our society among
other things, cooking seems to have become a "lost art". he points out, most people
seem to have no problem having meals prepared for them -- not only in restaurants, but
prepared frozen meals found in grocery stores. In fact, "the USDA says we eat 31 percent
more packaged food than fresh food, in terms of volume." That is just crazy!

Is it that no one cares to know how such processed foods are prepared? Or are consumers too
trusting that they will be protected by the government with regard to their food consumption?
There are so many options out there too -- one need not go through a drive-through to get a
quick meal, now you can just go to your local grocery store and pick up a "heat-and-serve"
item. Does anyone know how to cook these days or has it become unfashionable?

Another good observation that Mr. Alba makes in this well-written article is that many cooking techniques have become obsolete -- compare that to the number of hours of television watching
that goes on and yes, one can see that there is not enough time in the day. Many times as those
avid food watchers of those cooking shows believe, "I can never cook that way" or "that would
take me so long to do" is simply not true -- it just takes practice and the willingness to want to
cook a good meal.

In the words of the late and famous Julia Child, “You don't have to cook fancy or complicated masterpieces - just good food from fresh ingredients.”

Other articles about processed foods can be found at the links below...

9 ways that processed foods are killing people

The benefits of healthy whole foods

Whole Foods vs. Processed Foods: Why less is actually better

Land of Processed Foods

Land of Whole Foods

Thursday, July 17, 2014

What "Farm-to-Table" means to the next generation

It is interesting to see how farming has changed over the years. It has gone from being a way
of life for so many years to almost completely "dropping out" of existence. Now, farming is
an "in-thing" again and with good reason. With the concern that so many have about where
there food comes from, check out the following article which describes what "farm-to-table"
means to the next generation.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

7 Heart Healthy Substitutes

Here are 7 Heart Healthy Substitutes that can be made to your diet plan...

1) Olive Oil/Canola Oil for butter

2) Whole Wheat flour (or oats) for regular white flour

3) Salmon (or sardines, anchovies) for beef

4) Dark leafy greens like kale or arugula for iceberg lettuce

5) Herbs and spices for salt

6) Dark chocolate instead of milk chocolate (in moderation of course)

7) Whole fruits or apple sauce (read the label for added sugars!) for refined sugar.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

10 Foods to Improve Your Mood

Many times when a new week starts, it is up to you to set the mood for the week. Will it be a
stressful week or will it be a good one? Along the way though, it is helpful to know of some
foods that definitely work in your favor when it comes to setting the right mood for the week.

Check out the following 10 foods to improve your mood here:

1) Believe me, I've done the simple carb solution (like chips or pretzels) and it really doesn't
work. A good suggestion is pumpkin seeds. Pumpkin seeds are full of vitamins and minerals,
namely magnesium, which is also a brain food!

2) Dark leafy greens like spinach or kale. Not crazy for these in a salad? Mix it up and try
roasted kale chips or a delicious spinach salad with a little (moderate) amount of warm bacon dressing to add flavor.

3) Eggs are awesome! I guess I say that too because I just love them! You could make them
in a variety of ways. On the weekend, a good egg scramble with a little (moderate amount) of parmesan cheese and dark leafy greens with garlic and turmeric -- delicioso!

4) Carrots and celery are good choices. Aside from a healthy good crunch there are a ton of wonderful vitamins and minerals in them.

5) Omega 3-fatty acids. It has been found that Omega 3-fatty acids are wonderful an an anti-inflammatory as well as a "brain-booster" and mood stabilizer.

6) Flax seeds are magnificent little "power houses" for the body. There are so many
preventative ways they work in minimizing the risk of heart disease, cancer, diabetes
and more.

7) Whole grains definitely have their place in a healthy balanced diet plan. Such grains
as quinoa, oatmeal or brown rice are filling and a complex carbohydrate -- meaning they
also have good nutritional value to them due to their complex amount of vitamins and
minerals. These types of carbs are good at keeping you grounded and "level-headed".

8) Red peppers, papaya and kiwi fruit offer a good nutritional balance to any diet plan.
They are high in vitamin C and also help with minimizing stress levels.

9) Tea. Regular tea drinkers have been found to generally have lower stress levels than
others who don't drink tea at all.

10) Dark chocolate is the last...and also one of my favorites. Make it yours too. It has been
found that cocoa flavanols in chocolate actually boost mood and keep you thinking clearly.
Generally, one feels good too -- hard to beat that. The best part though...dark chocolate
could make you smarter!! How awesome is that!

Monday, July 14, 2014

Incorporating Meditation into a Healthy Lifestyle

The more complex our lives become, the more we want to control those outcomes to be more manageable. But, really -- what is manageable? Is it in skipping lunch with friends or not
watching an extra hour of T.V. at night? Is it in minimizing social media sites like checking
out Facebook every 30 minutes? It varies from person to person.

One thing for sure -- we shouldn't neglect ourselves from meditating or relaxing when we
can as it can prove to be so beneficial to our health. This article delves more deeply into why
meditation is important, especially if you are on a tight budgeted schedule everyday. The one
constant determinant for everyone is that there is no escaping the fact that there are 24 hours
in a day -- it is in how we use those hours that makes the difference.

For one, meditation is good for stress management and can certainly be a great preventative
measure for so many chronic diseases that exist today. It has been found that stress can
influence our state of being -- physical or emotional -- and can even be caused by a change
in our environment where we might need to change something.

Have you ever noticed how some people seem to handle stress better than others? Maybe those
that seem to handle it well just make time for what is important -- like doing some yoga or
taking a power walk or even sitting quietly and uninterrupted for 5 to 10 minutes a day. Yes,
it could be as simple as that and if it is done daily or close to every day, it could save you a lot
of grief from worrying about things that may be out of your control. This is a work in progress
no doubt, but work that needs to be done for your own piece of mind.

Here are a few other links that relate to the topic of minimizing stress...

Heart Disease and Stress

Yoga: Fight Stress

13 Healthy Foods that Reduce Stress and Depression

Friday, July 11, 2014

Making the most of your vegetables....

While it is true that most vegetables are not fattening and are super good for you -- that is great to know, right? Along the way of implementing more vegetables in one's diet plan, especially when it includes rearranging someone else's diet plan, i.e., husband, parents, children, it may not be received so well.

So much of what we don't know about trying new ingredients in our diet is that they may actually surprise us, especially if you use carefully crafted ingredients to go along with the vegetables. Example? Most people love potatoes -- but, one thinks of how they are prepared like with butter, sourcream and salt. Suddenly, your intention of eating healthier turns into disaster with all of those unneeded ingredients that make that potatoes calorie/fat content skyrocket and defeat the purpose of eating healthy in the first place!

Typically a potato when baked without all of that extra stuff is really good for you. On its own, a potato has little saturated fat, cholesterol or even sodium and additionally, it has a good amount of vitamins and minerals. But, what if you added salsa or used yogurt instead of sour cream to spice up your potato? Suddenly, the calorie/fat count isn't so bad!

Here is a good article on making good sustainable and certainly less fattening substitutes to your vegetables. Surprise yourself with new flavors for your palate!