Thursday, February 28, 2013

SPINACH IS A MULTIVITAMIN!

Yes, that's right, consider eating your spinach as taking a multivitamin!  Spinach is loaded with vitamins A,C, and K.  You also get folate in spinach.  Folate boosts the production of brain chemicals that affect mood so if you or someone you know tends to suffer from depression, add spinach to the diet.  Low levels of folic acid are associated with depression.  If you think you don't like spinach, try a little in salads, toss some fresh spinach in soups, etc.  Learn to add this multivitamin to your diet!  It really is good for you, just like your mother said.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

HOW CHERRIES AFFECT CANCER

You may wonder how something as simple as cherries can have an affect on cancer.  Cherries are an anti-inflammatory fruit and inflammation is something we always need to combat.  But here is the best part about cherries and cancer.  The tartness in cherries comes from perillyl alcohol.  Studies suggest perillyl alcohol deprives cancer of the proteins it needs to flourish and grow.  In lab tests, perillyl alcohol has done well against advanced breast, prostate, and ovarian cancers.  Cherries also contain the photochemicals isoquercitrin and quercetin both of which are known to inhibit colon cancer cells.  If you or a loved one are battling any of these cancers, work cherries into yours/their diet.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Having Trouble Focusing?

Are you having trouble focusing, paying attention, absorbing things during late night studying, etc?  You might want to make yourself a cup of peppermint tea!  In University studies it was found that peppermint tea upped office workers' performance during the day.  When you smell the mint aroma from your hot peppermint tea, it stimulates the brain's arousal system and helps you pay attention.  Perhaps at your next long boring meeting you should try a cup of peppermint tea instead of coffee!  Yes, I have been there, done that long boring meeting thing.  Why do you think they keep the coffee pot going during those meetings?  Suggest they add peppermint tea to the beverage cart!

This picture is not a brand endorsment.

Monday, February 25, 2013

ADD COCONUT OIL TO YOUR DIET

In spite of what you may have heard over the years about coconut oil and cholesterol, you need coconut oil in your diet!  Several years ago the scientific and medical worlds went crazy with all kinds of cholesterol warnings and unfortunately coconut was lumped into the "bad for you" catagory.  Once the research really got into the heart of the matter and discovered there were two types of cholesterol, LDL and HDL, they kind of left it there without going public to correct some of the products they had falsely smeared.  Ladies and gentlemen, coconut contains the HDL or good for you cholesterol!  If you do not have coconut oil as a part of your diet, add it.  Coconut oil is a natural antibiotic that can help defend your body against viruses.  Coconut oil is also very effective in the brain in helping to prevent and/or help the symptoms of alzheimer's, dementia, parkinson's disease, ALS, etc.

Two important things to remember:
  1. Alzheimer's and other similar diseases start in the brain up to 20 years before symptoms are shown.  Add coconut oil to your diet now.
  2. Use only PURE Coconut oil!  If you do not use pure coconut oil, you will be getting "hydrogenated" products in your coconut oil.  Hydrogenated simply means "trans fat" which is  not good for you.  Pure coconut oil may be more expensive but it is worth it!
This is the coconut oil I use.  Buy any brand that suits you as long as it is "Pure."

Friday, February 22, 2013

Madagascar Vanilla Red (Rooibos) Tea Bags

Hurry!  Check out this great deal by clicking the Cooking.com clearance link in the right-hand column.  This deal is almost sold out on this healthy rooibos tea!!  This tea is “Native only to the mountainous Cederberg region of South Africa, Rooibos (or red tea) is naturally sweet and has a slightly nutty flavor with hints of cherry and toffee."
    120-ct. Madagascar Vanilla Red Tea Bags by Celestial Seasonings
Includes six(6) 20-ct. boxes. Only $2.99 per box.  Total price for package is $17.94

MAKE A HEALTHIER SANDWICH

If you are one of those people who smother their sandwiches with mayonnaise, you need to change your sandwich making ways!  Try replacing mayonnaise on your sandwiches with a whole-grain mustard.  For every tablespoon of mayonnaise you replace with a tablespoon of a whole-grain mustard, you will save 80 calories and 9 1/2 grams of fat.  That amount of fat is equal to two slices of bacon!  And another plus to make that switch?  Mustard seed is a relative of cabbage and kale and contains similar immune-boosting properties.  Buy the grainy varieties of mustard since the bright yellow prepared mustard is more processed.  The more any food is processed, the less of its healthy properties it maintains.

This is another example of a simple switch you can make in your eating habits that will be better for your health and will also help with controlling your weight.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

BANANAS FOR ASTHMA?

How about another reason to eat bananas?  Most of us know bananas are a rich source of potassium and can help us keep our blood pressure down.  The average medium-size banana contains only 100 calories and has 3 grams of fiber.  But here is something about bananas that may surprise you.  A British study found that eating bananas daily may protect children from asthma symptoms!  Make sure you keep bananas available for your children and eat them yourself, too!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

APPLES & PEARS FOR STROKE PREVENTION?

We all know apples are good for us for many different reasons.  There's the quercetin that can protect brain cells from tissue-damaging free radicals, one average apple contains 16% of your daily fiber requirement, etc.  But a study published last year by Wageningen University in the Netherlands, shows that white-fleshed fruits (apples and pears are the best examples given) may help reduce your risk of having a stroke by around 50%!  Now that is good news.  What a tasty way to cut your risk of stoke.  Just another reason to make sure you are eating these tasty fruits.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

RED AND BLACK GRAPES FOR YOUR SKIN

Are you worried about your aging skin?  Then you may want to add more red and black grapes to your diet!  What a tasty way to protect your skin!  These grapes strengthen the capillaries in the skin and that protects against thread or spider veins. They also keep the skin from sagging and help it to remain supple.  Better be sure to swing by produce and pick up some red and/or black grapes the next time you are grocery shopping!



Monday, February 18, 2013

EASY WAY TO CUT BACK ON SALT

I think we are all aware we Americans eat way too much salt. If you are one of those in this catagory, try this trick.  (First of all, never add salt to the food on your plate especially without tasting it first!)  None of us want to eat dull bland food but you can cut back on salt without giving up flavor.  Did you know you can use less salt by adding a spritz of citrus juice to most foods without giving up flavor? In fact this often enhances flavors.  Why not give it a try and see if you can't do your heart a favor by eleminating some of the excess salt in your diet.  Notice, I am not recommending you have to give up salt, just cut back!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

A HEALTHY SUPER SWAP

If you are concerned with your health and would like to improve your diet, here is a good, simple way to start.  Start replacing most of the granulated sugar in your diet with honey.  As was discussed earlier this year on this blog, granulated sugar is basically stripped of all its nutritional value during processing so you are really not getting much nutrition when you consume it.  Start using honey to sweeten your beverages, oatmeal, etc.  Remember honey has antioxidants so you are trading a nutrient-poor sweetener for an antioxidant-laced one.  Honey still has calories though; 22 per teaspoon.  However, a recent University of Wyoming study found that making this switch from granulated sugar to honey could affect hunger hormones in a slimming way.  Compared with sugar, honey delayed the rise of ghrelin, a hormone that drives us to eat and it boosted levels of the feel-full compound PYY!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

RACHAEL RAY DINNERWARE FOR 49.99

This Rachael Ray dinnerware is an example of the clearance buys at Cooking.com  This dinnerware is reduced from $140.00 to $49.99 and is only one of many items available at bargain prices.  Click on the clearance link in the right hand column to check out this or the other items.

I love these colors and the pattern.  Especially love the cup/mug.

LIVE A LONG HEALTHY LIFE

Do you wish to live a long healthy life?  Most people do so here is a quote from Registered Dietitian Linda Van Horn, Ph.D., a professor of preventive medicine at Northwestern University's Feinberg School of Medicine and a member of the American Heart Association's nutrition committee: "If you want to live a long, healthy life, regularly eat a variety of foods rich in nutrients, live an active lifestyle, and make the occasional treat something you really enjoy."  Sounds like good advice to me!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

MIND GAMES TO HELP YOU EAT LESS

There really are ways to trick your mind and cut back on calories.  Some have been mentioned on this blog before but are worth mentioning again.  A couple are new to this blog.  I'm sure you can come up with even more.  Cut back on the number of calories you eat by trying these tips:
  • Use smaller size plates.  Get rid of your large dinner plates or hide them away for only special use.  Eat your meals on smaller plates.  Your brain sees a full plate and tricks you into thinking you are eating more than you are.
  • Use light shades or white solid color plates.  When you really see how much food you are loading onto your plate, you tend to pile less on there!
  • Use larger forks. A study by the University of Utah found that people who used large forks at big meals ate less than those with smaller forks.  It is thought that seeing your food disappearing more quickly tricks your brain into thinking you are full sooner.
  • Cut sweet treats, even candies, in half.  Study show that when given candies, those who cut their candies in half, ate on average 60 less calories than those who didn't cut their candies in half. When eating out and giving in to the temptation to try those rich desserts, always cut in half or share with your dining mates.
  • Keep extra food out of sight.  Leaving extra food on the counter rather than in serving bowls on the table cut the number of calories women ate by an average of 10% according to a Cornell University professor.

It is possible to cut calories and still enjoy all your favorite foods!

Monday, February 11, 2013

MORE ON CELERY

Yesterday's post was about celery and its relationship to cancer prevention.  Today, here are a few more facts about this inexpensive, healthy food.  One of the best things about celery is that it is only 16 calories per cup or approximately 6 calories per stalk!  That makes it what is considered a negative calorie food meaning the body uses up the calories you take in to process it when you eat celery.

Another benefit of celery is that it is high in bone-building vitamin-K and trust me, as one who suffers from osteoporosis, you need to build healthy bones!  Celery is also a fiber food.

 
Enjoy celery sticks as a snack or with a sandwich.  It is easy to add celery do your diet by adding sliced or diced celery to soups, casseroles, stir-frys, etc.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

CELERY AS A CANCER PREVENTATIVE?

If you have ever been on a diet you have surely eaten your share of celery sticks.  But did you realize you were also giving your body a cancer fighting tool?  That's right.  Celery works as an anti-inflammatory and it has coumarins which help to fight off cancer. 

Coumarin are radar-like phytochemicals that help white blood cells seek out potentially harmful cells, such as cancer cells, and the free radicals that cause normal cells to mutate into a cancerous state.

So celery's coumarins help to free the free radicals from damaging cells, thereby decreasing the mutations that can cause cells to become cancerous.  Also, acetylinic compounds in celery can stop the growth of tumor cells!

The bottom line here is this; if you aren't currently including celery in your diet, you should probably consider adding it.  Such an easy way to help protect your body from a devastating disease!!

Saturday, February 9, 2013

READY-MADE BBQ

If you like to buy your barbecue and/or barbecue sauce ready-made, watch out for the sodium content.  Barbecue can be an easy way for too much sodium to sneak into your diet.  When buying ready-made barbecue or sauce, try to purchase brands that have less than 300mg of sodium per serving.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

CAYENNE & CHILI FLAKES AND CANCER

What you say?  Cayenne pepper and chili flakes in relationship to cancer?  The answer is yes!  These foods or spices however you want to consider them, are something we should all be eating.  Not only are they "active" calories which have been discussed on this blog, they have protective properties!  Some of the active benefits of eating these items are that they can stimulate appetite in those who are suffering a loss of appetite due to illness and/or drugs.  They are also digestive aids, anti-inflammatories, and antibacterial.  The capsaicin that protects chili peppers from disease may also extend that protection to humans!  Studies show that capsaicin decreases PSA levels, the antigen whose level normally rises as prostate cancer develops.  It may also protect against stomach cancer and may even affect the spread of brain and spinal cord tumors known as gliomas.

My advice to anyone who doesn't currently use these ingredients in your food would be to start doing so immediately.  You don't have to drown your food with them, just use them regularly.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

EAT YOUR FRUITS AND VEGGIES TO KEEP YOUR MIND ALERT

Once again your mother's directive to eat your vegetables is proven to be good advice!  Studies have shown that eating vegetables improves blood flow and feeds the brain.  Studies of persons age 65 and up found that those who eat at least 3 servings of fruits and vegetables a day showed a 40% less decline on cognitive tests than their counterparts who ate less fruits and vegetables.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

INTERESTING FACTS ON CITRUS JUICE

Here are a couple of facts I have discovered in my research that I found very interesting.  I imagine this is news to you, too.  Most of us who want orange juice, etc, go to the store and buy a bottle, carton, or even a can.  That is very convenient but not the best way to get the benefits of drinking citrus juice.  To get the full health benefits of citrus juices it is best to buy the fruits and squeeze them yourself.  Studies have shown that due to light and oxygen during processing and storage, citrus juices may lose up to 50% of their important flavonoids!

Another tidbit is that typically there is about 17% more vitamin C in organic citurs than in conventional.  I don't often recommend buying organic, but this might be a good place to do so.

Monday, February 4, 2013

FOOD BORNE ILLNESSES

This is a post I got from Mike Huckabee.  I especially like the last sentence!

The CDC has released its most comprehensive report ever on the sources of food poisoning. Every year, about 48 million get food poisoning, resulting in about 128,000 hospitalizations and 3,000 deaths. But where does it come from? You might be surprised. After studying ten years of data, CDC researchers discovered the most dangerous foods were…leafy green vegetables, like spinach and lettuce. Add in all fruits and vegetables, and produce accounts for nearly half of all food poisoning cases in the US. But it’s mostly infected by food handlers, so it has more to do with who prepares your food than the kind of food it is. And the most dangerous food-borne diseases came from eating poultry. Beef handling has gotten a lot safer in recent years, so beef accounted for only 7 percent of food-borne illnesses. Still, when someone nags you to eat your vegetables, you might demand to know if they washed their hands first. Unless it’s your mom. Talk to her like that, and food poisoning will be the least of your health worries. 

COUSCOUS

Couscous may resemble a grain but it is actually a tiny pasta and can be a healthy choice food.  One-half cup of whole-grain couscous = 70 calories, 0 fat, and 2 grams of fiber.  Note that this is true original couscous.  There are now brown rice couscous, a couscous made from corn, etc on the market.  However, true couscous is a semolina product and the above numbers apply.  As with all foods, what you add to the product will change the numbers!

Sunday, February 3, 2013

MORE ON HEALING FOODS FOR CANCER

Sorry.  I told you on Friday I would continue this "tomorrow."  And tomorrow turned out to be Sunday night.  I had three grandchildren spend the weekend and they took precedence over the computer! That's just how grandmas are!

Below are some examples of what studies have shown to be some of the cancer-fighting powers of food:
  • Multiple studies have shown diets rich in cruciferous vegetables are linked with a lower incidence of cancers that attack the digestive system (includes stomach, bowel, and colon cancers).  And believe me, I know from personal experience, you do not want cancer of your digestive system.  You would be much better off adding some cruciferous vegetables (vegetables in the cabbage family) to you diet.  As I have said before, if you don't like certain types of food consider them as medicine and have a "dose" on a regular basis.  And don't over-cook cruciferous vegetables as you may destroy some of their benefits if you do!
  • Again, multiple studies have also shown that people who eat a lot of fiber-rich foods have a lower incidence of colon cancer than their counterparts who eat very little fiber.  When my colon cancer was discovered a few years ago, it was discovered in March.  My surgeon told me I was very fortunate as it was the "very aggressive type" and I would have been dead before the end of the year had they not discovered it when they did.  Believe me, that is a wake-up call and I have been very sure to eat more fiber since then!
  • Dozens of studies have shown a protective link between beta-carotene and some cancers. It is strongly believed in the medical/scientific community that the more green and yellow fruits and vegetables a person eats, the less likely they are to develop cancer of the lungs, stomach, or mouth.  Smokers take note!  Smoking is known to be a cause of the majority of these cancers.  If you smoke, and you aren't going to quit, at least eat fruits and veggies high in beta-carotene.
  • Vitamins C and E and beta carotene are antioxidants.  Scientists believe antioxidants help protect our cells from cancer.
This is really just a mini post on how foods relate to cancer or cancer prevention.  If this has peaked your interest, or spoken to something you see you need to change in your diet, don't put it off as we often tend to do.  Get started on it today!


Friday, February 1, 2013

SOME "HEALING FOODS" FOR CANCER

Last month I posted a couple of posts regarding healing foods.  Today I am going back to that with a list of some "healing foods" for cancer.  Would you believe that after several decades of studying this devastating disease known as cancer, doctors and scientists have come to the conclusion that up to 50% of all cancers may be linked to diet?  Think about that for a second and let the fact sink into your mind that what you eat or don't eat could be setting you up to have or escape certain types of cancer.  That is a powerful thought!

One of the things that often confuses us is fat in the diet.  According to the National Cancer Institute, reducing the amount of fat in our diets is one of the most important things we can do for cancer prevention.  However, that statement must be analyzed.  While the NCI says we shouldn't get over 30% of our calories a day from fat, not all fat is bad.  They recommend no more than 10% of your calories a day from saturated fat which is considered one of the bad fats.  While at the same time you need the fats from oils such as canola and olive.  But remember that reducing fats is very important in cancer prevention.

Here is a partial list of some foods that are recommended as Healing Foods for reducing your risks of developing several types of cancers.
  • All cruciferous vegetables (other posts on this blog describe these veggies.)
  • All dark green and yellow fruits and vegetables
  • All whole grains
  • Dried Beans
  • Wheat Bran
  • Citrus Fruits
  • Fish, especially the fatty ones ie salmon, tuna, rainbow trout, etc
  • Nuts
  • Onions
  • Peppers
  • Salad Greens
As already stated, the above is a partial list but I'm sure you get the idea.  If you aren't currently eating several of these items on a weekly, if not daily, basis, I suggest you start doing so now.  It is  not too late to improve your diet.

In tomorrow's post I will continue with more information about healing foods for cancer.