Saturday, May 31, 2014

COOKED GREENS

Greens are very healthy and add many nutritional benefits to one's diet. However, it is important that you do not overcook greens. Not only will overcooking ruin the color it will also destroy some of the nutrients and thus their health benefits.


Friday, May 30, 2014

FOOD PHARMACY

If you follow this blog, you know I am constantly talking about using food as medicine or in other words eating healthy so you can avoid conventional medicines as much as possible. Have you ever listened to a commercial for a pharmaceutical drug or read the paperwork that comes with a prescription? If not, you should. Yes, medications are often necessary, I take meds myself, but by eating healthy you can often cut your medicines way back and sometimes eliminate them all together! One of the most important things about using food as medicine is being allowed to remove some of the worry over the oft times frightening side effects of modern drugs. Over the years as I have done much research, I have cut back my prescription drugs tremendously. I now take very few drugs and I feel better than ever. If you are not currently eating a healthy diet, start today to make improvements in your food choices. You will be glad you did.


Thursday, May 29, 2014

Don't Be Fooled About Vitamin-C

As I have previously written on this blog, you need to know the best sources of vitamin-C and they aren't necessarily the ones that will first pop into your mind. When ask, most people will immediately mentioned oranges or orange juice. And yes, that is a source of vitamin-C. However, red and green bell peppers provide around 2 1/2 times as much vitamin-C as do oranges! Broccoli and Brussels sprouts provide over twice as much as do oranges. Spinach provides a fraction more vitamin-C than do oranges. So don't forget your veggies when you are looking for vitamin-C foods. As for fruits, strawberries have more vitamin-C than oranges.

Vitamin-C is a powerful antioxidant and vitamin- c rich foods should be include regularly in your diet.




Wednesday, May 28, 2014

VIDEO GAMES FOR SENIORS?

Today's post really has nothing to do with kitchen medicine, unless of course you play video games in the kitchen! But I thought it was an interesting tidbit to be passed along. According to research at North Carolina State University conducted last year, people aged 63 to 92 who video games tested higher for social function and lower for depression than non-gamers! So to all my fellow senior citizens, it is okay to play those video games. Solitaire and Bejeweled are recommended.


Monday, May 26, 2014

TIDBITS REGARDING THE BRAIN

Have you ever really stopped and thought about the brain and what an amazing thing it is? I once read that it is the body's Grand Central Station of function, thought, and memory. How true! Vonda Wright, M.D., author Fitness After 40: How to Stay Strong at Any Age and Guide to Thrive, is quoted as saying, "There's never an age or skill level where we can't maintain or rebuild our brains and bodies. Age is not a barrier." That is something this old lady is glad to know! Below are some tidbits about keeping the brain healthy:

  • "I do everything to keep my mind healthy," says Michael Roizen, M.D., chief wellness officer of the famous Cleveland Clinic. He goes on to say, "I eat a Mediterranean diet, I exercise, I try to get more sleep than I ever have and I'm constantly exposed to new things."  Sounds like good advice to me!
  • The University of Exeter Medical School did a study last year that shows a Mediterranean diet, that is a diet chock-full of fruits, vegtetables, whole grains, legumes, poultry, and lots of fish, may lower ones risk of developing dementia. The study suggests eating fishing once or twice a week.
  • MIT research in 2010 showed that loading up on magnesium-rich foods may potentially reverse middle-age memory loss! The following foods are rich in magnesium - soy beans, brown rice, bananas, and pumpkin seeds.
  • And once again one of my favorite foods, a beverage actually, goes on the list. Green tea, according to research published in Molecular Nutrition & Food in 2012, may help boost brain cell production to aid memory. Everyone should have at least one cup of green tea a day and I base that on the health research I have been doing for years now. Green tea constantly pops up on healthy lists of foods.
The above is just a small list but enough to get anyone concerned about the brain, forgetfulness, etc, started toward improving their brain health.

Yes, a simple banana is brain food!


Saturday, May 24, 2014

WATER AND SUN

The best way to stay safe in the sun is to avoid it between the hours of 10 AM and 4 PM! Since that is when most of you want to be in the sun, thankfully I am not one of you, there are a few important things to remember:

  • #1 - always use sunscreen. Your sunscreen should be SPF 15 or higher and it should be reapplied every few hours.
  • #2 - use an SPF lip balm. Remember lips get sunburn too!
  • #3 - DRINK LOTS OF WATER!
There are many more precautions but since this is a kitchen medicine blog I wanted to stick mostly with the water issue. It is so easy to become dehydrated when exposed to the sun in the heat of the day or for long periods of time. Be cautious and keep lots of water with you and drink it!


Friday, May 23, 2014

CHIA SEEDS CONTAIN HEART-HEALTHY OMEGA-3S

The picture below is not a brand endorsement as the purpose of this blog is not to endorse brands or sell you products. I choose this picture because it hows the high omega-3 count on the front of the package where you can see it easily.  The fact is chia seeds are a good source of the heart-healthy omega-3s and should be included in your diet!

HOW MANY CALORIES CAN YOU EAT AND LOSE WEIGHT?

If you are wanted to lose some weight or maintain a weight loss here is a little help. You can figure out how many calories you can eat a day and still lose 1 pound a week.  Use the following equation:

  • Multiply your weight by the number 12. Subtract 500 from the number and that is the number of calories you can handle a day and still love 1 pound a week.
  • Example: If you weigh 150 pounds - 150 X 12 = 1800 - 500 = 1300. You can eat 1300 calories a day and still lose a pound a week.
  • That's a pretty simple way to lose 52 pounds in a year!

SUMMER FRUIT - ORGANIC OR CONVENTIONALLY GROWN?

Tis the season, for fresh fruit that is! Do you ever wonder if you should pay more for organic fruit or if the conventionally grown is just as safe? Here is a little advice to help you with that decision since we are often watching our budgets when we are shopping for foods.

The general rule that applies to fruits is this:

  • Fruits with thick skins or rinds are okay to buy conventional since the thickness of the outer portion tends to make it harder for pesticides to get to the flesh (what you will eat) of the fruit. Examples would be melons, grapefruit, and pineapple.
  • Fruits with thin skins should be purchased from the organic options because when they are grown conventionally, they have the most pesticide residue on their skins or even penetrated to the flesh. Examples would be apples, grapes, nectarines, peaches, strawberries and other berries.
Tips: 
  • Always scrub produce thoroughly under running water to remove dirt and bacteria.
  • Leave peels on fruits when possible to help retain fiber and nutrients.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

COFFEE AND MEMORY

If you are a regular follower of this blog you will know coffee is good for you. Here is another tidbit for all you coffee drinkers and perhaps for those of you who are considering coffee:

  • Last year (2013) the journal Nature Neuroscience reported on a study that showed participants who drank coffee showed improvement in their long-term memory in as little as 24 hours after drinking the coffee.

Monday, May 19, 2014

A DIABETIC MYTH

I am a diabetic and I know many of my readers are, too. There are many people out there who constantly want to give us advice or tell us about all the problems diabetes can cause. Do not believe the following myth, "Diabetes is a one-way street to bad health problems." Diabetes when ignored or not treated properly can certainly cause poor health and many health problems. But we diabetics do not have to let that happen. With a good medical team and proper nutrition and medication, it is possible in almost all cases to keep diabetes under control and live a normal life.  Following is a quote from Bill who lives in California:
  • "I have been a diabetic for the last 38 years. I started with oral medication and progressed to insulin. I have been on insulin for the last 28 years. Together with healthy foods and portion control, I can manage my blood sugar."
I like Bill's quote because he add a key phrase in there, "portion control"! Portion control is an important part of a diabetic's diet!

If you are struggling with your diabetes, watch your portion size, follow a healthy diet, and get exercise daily. It is also important to take your medicine regularly. You can learn to control your diabetes!

PS: This is good advice for anyone, diabetic or not!






Friday, May 16, 2014

CALCIUM GOALS

According to most medical professionals, it is best (as stated in previous posts) to get your calcium from foods rather than supplements. So what is the bottom line? It is recommended you get 1,000 mg of calcium a day if you are under age 50 and 1,200 mg a day if you are over age 50. So be sure you are keeping plenty of calcium-rich foods in your diet!  The picture below shows a variety of calcium-rich foods and gives the amounts of calcium in each. Take time to check it out.

Click on picture to enlarge for easier reading.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Calcium Supplements vs Calcium From Food

It is best to get your calcium from food rather than from supplements according to Stephen Honig, M.D. According to Dr Honig,  "In general, calcium supplements are not well absorbed - getting it from food is much more effective." Because the body can take in only about 250 mg at a time, try to spread out your intake over the course of the day. A strawberry banana smoothie made with almond milk is a good way to start your day.




Wednesday, May 14, 2014

SPINACH FOR YOUR BONES

As many of you know I have osteoporosis. I also have a bone tumor so I am paying lots of attention right now to anything concerning the bones. Thankfully, spinach is one of my favorite foods and I plan on adding a lot more of it to my diet. Here are some 'good for your bones' facts about spinach:

  • 1/2 cup of spinach supplies you with 122 mg of calcium
  • Spinach provides the body with bone-building magnesium
  • Spinach provides the body with bone-building vitamin K
Protect your bones! If spinach is not currently a part of your diet, make a point to start including it often, at least weekly. You can saute spinach, eat in in a salad, drop some into soup, use it on a sandwich, etc. There are many tasty ways to work spinach into your diet.


Tuesday, May 13, 2014

YO-YO DIETING AND BONES

Yo-yo dieting is not good for your body and can be harmful to your bones. This is not a post against dieting, many of us should do more of it. This is for those who choose to diet, lose a lot of weight and then gain it and more back, diet again and repeat the process over and over. Here is a warning for those who yo-yo diet.

When you take off pounds, especially a lot of them, you lose muscle mass along with the fat tissue. The less muscle you have, the weaker your bones will ultimately become. When you yo-yo diet, you have less time to rebuild muscle and may be setting your bones up for problems later.


Monday, May 12, 2014

SOME FACTS ON SHRIMP

Here are a few facts about shrimp:
  • 10 to 12 medium-sized shrimp will give you 24 g protein and only 1 g fat.
  • Those 10 to 12 medium-sized shrimp are only 99 calories (doesn't count butter, etc you add)
  • Shrimp is high in zinc
  • Frozen shrimp is often more fresh than that in the fresh seafood display case. Frozen shrimp is flash frozen right after it is harvested.
  • Shrimp is high in heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids.

Friday, May 9, 2014

CHEESE FOR THE LACTOSE INTOLERANT

Please note: Everyone has a different level of severity of any problem. What works for one doesn't always work for another. However for those who have somewhat of a problem with lactose intolerance this might
be helpful information. You might want to only try a small amount first or discuss with your doctor before trying these cheeses!

Here are some facts about cheeses and lactose:
  • Cheese doesn't contain as much lactose as other dairy products.
  • Most ripened cheeses, ie cheddar and Swiss, contain about 95% less lactose than whole milk.
  • Processed cheese, ie American and cream cheese, contain only a small amount of lactose.
  • Aged cheeses, ie Parmesan and Romano, contain almost no lactose at all.
  • Check the nutrition label on cheese before buying. If the amount of sugar is listed as 0 grams, that cheese contains basically no significant amount of lactose.