Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Soda Pop!

I love soda. I'm not going to lie about it. The best thing is a fountain drink. They are just so terrible for you, and the damage they do on the body. There are natural better for you sodas on the market, but in many areas they are hard to find. Just stay away from the diet and zero drinks. I don't know if you even want to know yet about what those do, but you know I will be telling you soon enough.

THE GOOD STUFF
 Sodas that are sweetened with stevia, a naturally derived sweetener, or cane sugar are healthier alternatives to their corn-syrup sisters.


THE BAD STUFF

 When it comes to carbonated beverages, carbonation isn't the enemy; it’s the rest of what goes into soda that can be harmful to the body. Artificial colorings have been linked to hyperactivity in children.

Monday, June 23, 2014

White or Wheat?

As I have said on here before, I love some white bread, but it is bad for your health and weight. People, we really do need to watch what kind of bread we eat. There are so many people and experts out there that say never to eat bread, but sandwiches are delicious. I love them. Here are some things that you need to look out for when buying bread at the store. You know the best option is to make your own bread.

THE GOOD STUFF
 Though the authors of Rich Food, Poor Food believe bread should be avoided, we understand bread is often unavoidable. Steer clear of the worst stuff by looking for breads made with whole grains. The first ingredient should be either “100% whole wheat” or “100% whole grain” to make sure you’re getting the healthiest option.





THE BAD STUFF

If the first ingredient is “wheat flour” or “enriched bleached flour,” then white flour was mostly used
rather than whole-wheat flour.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

I scream and you scream for....Oh no, not for that.

Seriously!? They use puss out of a mature beaver for flavoring, and they think that is OK. The sad part I have known about this for a long time. It is not only in ice creams. People will just put up with anything. I would rather make my own ice cream.
THE GOOD STUFF
 I think we all know ice cream is never going to be good for us. But if you want to indulge every now and then, opt for ice cream with organic milk made without artificial dyes.


THE BAD STUFF

 Some vanilla, strawberry, and raspberry-flavored ice creams include an ingredient called castoreum, which is the pus that oozes out of the castor sacs of mature beavers. Marketed as a “natural ingredient,” this is definitely one ingredient to avoid.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Pass the butter, please.

There is nothing wrong with butter in moderation. Okay, I know it is bad for your health, but it has been around for ages and it did not kill our ancestors. Their butter was made at home by hand, and it was not filled with mystery ingredients added in the mix. That is what is hurting us now, these "ingredients". Here are some reason to keep the butter on the table.


THE GOOD STUFF
Grass-fed cows produce butter that has 50% more of the vitamins A & E, and almost 400% more beta-carotene, which is converted to Vitamin A in the body, than factory-farmed cows. Organically raised cattle also ensure high levels of naturally occurring omega-3s and CLA.


THE BAD STUFF

 Though organic may seem like a passing buzzword, consider this: Unwanted growth hormones (such as rBGH and rBST, “bovine growth hormones”) injected into factory-raised cattle accumulate in the highest concentration in butterfat.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Block or Shredded....You decide.

I will admit that I love cheese. I am worse than a cartoon mouse. I want it on everything. I do use pre-shredded cheese, because I'm lazy. I need to change to buying blocks of cheese and here are some reasons why.

THE GOOD STUFF
Organic, grass-fed cheese means richer micronutrients. For example, grass-fed cattle produce cheese up to 400 times richer in fat-metabolizing CLA (conjugated linoleic acid). In addition, buying block cheese and cutting it yourself will help preserve your cheese’s micronutrients and protect you from harmful additives.


THE BAD STUFF

 When buying cheese, it’s best to avoid the pre-shredded varieties, as many of them contain cellulose powder (literally minuscule pieces of wood pulp) used to absorb moisture in packaging and extend the product’s shelf life.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

The Egg or the GMO's

I have eaten all different types of eggs. I can honestly tell you in my opinion that buying eggs directly from a farm is the best way to obtain eggs, but not everyone is able to do that. The next best way is to buy the cages free, non-GMO, orgain eggs. I know they are a bit more expensive, but it is so worth your family's health and the well being for the chickens. Here are some of the reasons why.

THE GOOD STUFF
USDA-certified organic eggs must be fed organic, non-GMO feed, free of antibiotics and pesticides. Additionally, they must be kept uncaged in barns or warehouses with access to the outside.


THE BAD STUFF

 Be aware that cage-free may sound nice, but it doesn't necessarily mean happy chickens. Though cage-free chickens must be kept outside of cages with access to food and water, they do not have to have access to the outdoors. Also, their feed does not have to be organic.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Beef, watch it.

With all of the beef recalls that have happened over the past several years, you would think that it would have stopped the bad beef. When will they ever learn.
THE GOOD STUFF
Grass-fed meat is richer in micronutrients than grain-fed meat, containing fat-metabolizing CLA and inflammation-reducing omega-3s. Grass-finished means the cattle are fed grass until their slaughter, as opposed to just grass-fed, which can allow cattle to be fed grains before processing to improve texture and taste. Finally, organic ensures that your beef is free of antibiotics, hormones, and GMOs.


THE BAD STUFF

 Aside from being drained of its natural flavors, the beef produced by grain-fed cattle is much higher in fat content and devoid of many micronutrients.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Yo! gurt......

I'm not a fan of yogurt, but so many people are. The commercials that run on the television are so
misleading for the consumer. The whole Greek yogurt is better for you, but they don't tell you that some Greek yogurts contain more hidden sugars. Organic is always the way to go, and here are some reasons why.

THE GOOD STUFF
Organic yogurts contain many micronutrient and probiotic benefits, which can aid digestion and boost your immune system by increasing the production of the infection-fighting proteins.


THE BAD STUFF

 All yogurt is made by adding two types of bacteria to milk, but many of these bacteria die after the initial process of heating the yogurt. Therefore, look for varieties that contain active or living cultures, as opposed to simply having been made with living cultures.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Yard bird

I honestly did not or know about chicken being "Air Chilled". That is a new on for me. The taste of organic free ranged poultry is the best. The taste is more like chicken, if that is not hard to believe. The meat is not dry at all, but the birds are smaller because they are raised correctly.
THE GOOD STUFF
Organic in reference to poultry means chickens are fed 100% non-GMO feed that contains no animal by-products. Air-chilled chickens absorb less water and have up to 80% lower bacteria counts than water-chilled chickens.


THE BAD STUFF

 Many chickens are processed in community-style chlorine baths before their packaging, adding unnecessary water weight to the meat before it’s delivered to grocery stores. In addition, water-chilled chickens lose their naturally flavorful juices as the excess water escapes during cooking.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Moo Juice....What is the difference in Regular and Organic?

THE GOOD STUFF
Grass-fed cows (vs. grain-fed) deliver two essential fats: conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) and omega-3s, making their milk micronutrient-rich. Organic indicates that the cattle receive no synthetic hormones or antibiotics. Non-homogenized means the product hasn’t been chemically altered, changing the way we digest it (and increasing likelihood of allergic reactions). Opaque paper packaging blocks light from degrading the quality of the milk.





THE BAD STUFF

 Most generic brands have been robbed of the micronutrients that make milk worth drinking to begin
with. Furthermore, non-organic cattle are eating crops injected with genes from other organisms to manipulate their DNA (GMOs, or genetically modified organisms) and increase industrial efficiency.


I know we are the only mammals to drink milk after we stop breast feeding, but I love milk. You just need to stick to skim milk to save fat and calories. 

Thursday, February 20, 2014

15 different ways to become healthier.


If you can't splurge on classes . . . DO A WORKOUT DVD. You can get a solid workout in your own living room for the price of a private yoga lesson or a few dance classes. The trick is to stay motivated when your comfy couch is beckoning from a few feet away. These tricks can help:
1. Treat your workout time like an actual class. Schedule time in your day to work out, and stick with it.
2. Even if you don't feel like pushing yourself to the limit, at least push yourself to start.

3. Invite a friend.
If you can't splurge on a trainer . . . HOLD YOURSELF ACCOUNTABLE. Personal trainers provide structure and accountability to your fitness regimen. But if it's out of your budget, here's how you can reap the same benefits on your own:

4. Join an online community.  
5. Get high-tech help from goal-tracking apps and websites that allow you to monitor your progress.

6. Take a picture. The motivational power of 'before' photos is massive, because you're going to improve.
If you cannot splurge on a gym membership . . . HIT THE PAVEMENT. Think of the great outdoors as an enormous, free cardio room. Here are a few ways to get your heart pumping, no equipment necessary.

7. To torch fat, do outdoor intervals. Run up a hill or stairs at top speed for up to a minute, then walk back down at your normal pace to catch your breath and recover.
8. Check a map. Your local geography might offer a unique workout opportunity—are there mountains to climb, oceans to swim, or a stadium for stair running?

9. Go back to the DVD rack.
If you can't splurge on fitness equipment . . . GET CREATIVE. You don't need to invest in a full set of dumbbells or a weight bench to do resistance training. Here's how to build muscle on the cheap.

10. Turn everyday household items into makeshift equipment. Canned soup cans double as light weights, furniture can add instability, and a milk crate can work as a step. The Message Boards are the perfect place to find DIY ideas.
11. If you buy a pair of weights, go heavy.

12. Buy bands. Exercise bands are cheap, light, and take up almost no space in your house. Plus, they're ideal if you want to stick to your workouts while traveling.
If you can't splurge on a nutritionist . . . LEARN TO SHOP SMART. With a little pre-planning, you can eat well without racking up a huge grocery bill. Here's how to find nutritious foods that won't blow your budget.

13. Stick to the basics. Shop seasonal produce, lean meats, and other foods on the periphery of your grocery store. The center aisles are usually where packaged and processed foods are kept. Watch for sales on meat, and buy nuts or beans in bulk.
14. Get informed.  Read up on working out and nutrition.  There are so many books out there to choice from, and most people have several different ways to access the internet.  You can even find lots of different healthy recipes out there.

15. Plan your meals ahead of time so you're not winging it when you hit the aisles. Look for apps that help you plan meals and track deals.

Monday, February 17, 2014

8 Ways to cut your Grocery Bill!


1. Don't shop hungry!
How often do you swing by the market on your way home from work, tired and starving? While this seems like grandmotherly advice, it's firmly rooted in current research; a new Cornell study shows that people who shop while hungry are more inclined to buy more calorically dense food.1 Keep a piece of fruit or a small Ziploc® bag full of raw nuts in your bag to guard against filling your cart with foods you're craving now but wouldn't buy on a full stomach.
2. Buy flash-frozen fruits, vegetables, and fish.
While any processing takes away from a food's maximum nutritional value, flash freezing is a great way to preserve vitamins and minerals when vegetables and seafood are at their freshest. And the convenience of a bag of veggies or a filet of fish in the freezer can't be beat. The price? For seafood, there's no comparison: fresh is much more expensive—when you can get it at all. (If you check at your local grocer's fish counter, you'll find that much of what is being sold in the case as fresh has in fact been previously frozen.) Produce is trickier: frozen is sometimes, but not always, cheaper than fresh, in-season, fruits and vegetables.
3. Shop at your local farmers market.
This may surprise you, but it's cheaper to get your veggies—organic or not—at the local farmers' market than at the local supermarket. A 2011 study by the Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermont is one of several around the country showing that farmers' market prices are consistently lower than those of neighboring grocery stores.2 Who knew? So have a great time shopping with your neighbors and supporting local farmers, and be happy in the knowledge that you're saving money too.
4. Stick to your list.
Don't cave in to the snazzy packaging on the supermarket shelves. Make your meal plan and shopping list at home, and then stick to it. Here's the exception: when you shop at the farmers' market or local produce stand, sometimes a gorgeously fresh fruit or vegetable will stand out—one you hadn't planned on. Build some flexibility into your list to account for these unanticipated treasures . . . just decide which meals you want to add them to before purchasing. A good rule of thumb is to stick absolutely to your list of pantry items, but give yourself some leeway with fresh, seasonal foods.
5. Eat lots of beans and always soak your own.
Beans are a great source of protein and fiber, and form the cornerstone of many world cuisines. And they're dead cheap—if you buy them dried. Soaking your own beans is easy, though it does take more planning than opening a can of them. But it's no big deal. Just decide the night before what you're going to eat the next day. If a meal includes beans, then put them in a pot of water to soak and leave them overnight. In the morning, let them cook as you're getting ready for the day.
6. Buy in bulk.
Costco® and other warehouse stores sell fruits and vegetables at ridiculously low prices—if you're willing to buy, say, 15 pounds of potatoes or 8 pounds of oranges at a time. You're in for some work at home, but at those prices, who's complaining? Also, in many regions it is possible to pair up with another family or two and buy a portion of either a cow or a pig directly from a local farmer. In exchange, you will receive many, many neatly wrapped and labeled packages of meat. An extra freezer is necessary for this, but well worth the investment if you live in a region where such arrangements exist. Another huge benefit of this is that you know the animal was not raised on a factory feedlot. Therefore, the meat will likely be free from the steroids and antibiotics that plague grocery store bargain meat cuts.
7. Join a CSA.
Community Supported Agriculture is another way to save money by cutting out the middleman. With a CSA, you pay a flat fee up front. On the East Coast it's typically $400-$500—for a whole growing season of produce! Every week you get a box of whatever came out of the farmer's field. Like buying in bulk at warehouse stores, this calls for some time and creativity in the kitchen. In late summer, we sometimes freak out trying to figure out what to do with all those perfect, ripe tomatoes. What a problem to have!
8. Cut your consumption.
Over the last few decades, restaurant portions have become gargantuan, and we somehow seem to think that a platter of food is actually a single serving. Most restaurant entrées can easily feed two or three. So when you're out, either share a single entrée, or get half boxed for another meal. And at home, serve smaller portions on smaller plates. It won't take long at all before you're satisfied with sensible portions!