Friday Funny.... so true ....

Posted on March 22

5 Amazing Health Benefits of Stone Fruits

Posted on March 19

Nothing says summer like sweet, juicy stone fruits. From peaches and cherries to plums and mangoes, these mouth-watering fruits can turn any meal into a sweet treat. Best of all, you can feel good about eating them since they pack a serious nutrient punch.

Indeed, stone fruits are rich in inflammation-fighting phytonutrients, which can help protect your health and even fight the signs of aging. Fun fact: They're also what give stone fruits their vibrant yellow, orange, red, and purple hues.

But what is a stone fruit, exactly? Stone fruits get their name from the fact that they all have a pit (or stone) in the center. Another fun fact: The stone itself isn’t a seed. The fruit’s seed is inside the stone. Most stone fruits are at their peak during the summer, but frozen options are available year-round.
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The health benefits of stone fruits

They help lower your blood pressure

Stone fruits aren’t as potassium-rich as bananas, but since most Americans struggle to get the recommended 4,700 milligrams per day, every little bit you can get makes a difference, especially if you’re trying to lower your blood pressure. The mineral plays a key role in promoting healthy blood pressure levels by relaxing blood vessels and helping the body get rid of excess sodium.

They keep your weight in check

Sugary cravings standing in the way of your weight loss goals? Stone fruits are naturally sweet, but they also happen to be pretty low in calories. (Most have between 75 and 100 calories per serving.) So having a nectarine or a bowl of cherries instead of cookies or candy just might hit the spot—without wrecking your diet. Case in point? You could have four medium peaches for the same calories as a 1.5-ounce chocolate bar.

Stone fruits are also a good source of fiber. You’ll get around three grams of fiber from a cup of cherries or a large nectarine. That’s important, since fiber is key for filling you up and helping you keep your weight in check. Roughage plays an important role in improving your cholesterol and lowering your risk for heart disease, stroke and type 2 diabetes.

They boost your eye health

Apricots and mangoes serve up beta-carotene, a form of vitamin A that plays an essential role in eye health. It’s been shown to absorb damaging blue light that enters the eye from computers and cell phones.You’ll get around half of the amount of vitamin A you’ll need in a day from just half a cup of fresh apricots.

They stave off disease

Cherries and plums are rich in anthocyanins, disease-fighting flavonoids found in dark red, purple and blue fruits and veggies. Evidence suggests that anthocyanins may offer protection against cancer, heart disease, diabetes and cognitive decline.

They improve your skin

Peaches and nectarines are packed with vitamin C, which helps prevent cell damage and aids in the production of skin-smoothing collagen. You’ll get around 15 percent of your daily vitamin C from a large peach and around 10 percent from a large nectarine.
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3 ways to eat stone fruits

A perfectly ripe peach or plum is pretty darn satisfying all on its own. But you can do more with stone fruits than just eat them out of hand. Some ideas:

Grill them. Halved and pitted peaches, plums, apricots, and nectarines are firm, so they hold their shape even under high heat. Try serving them in a side salad with grilled steak, chicken or pork chops or blend them into a smoothie with Greek yogurt for a filling treat.

Roast them. Toss halved or chopped pitted stone fruit on a baking sheet, drizzle them with some olive oil and roast until soft, juicy and caramelized. Toss them in a salad or stir them into cottage cheese or plain yogurt.

Add them to salsa or guac. Diced peaches or pitted cherries lend a sweet contrast to zesty salsas.

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Blueberry Smoothie...

Posted on March 13

Do you find it difficult to drink a cold smoothie when it is chilly outside? Add some festive spices like nutmeg, cardamom and cinnamon to warm up the taste.

Ingredients

½ cup frozen Blueberries
¾ cup plain kefir or (non dairy) yogurt
½ cup baby spinach
½ cup cucumber chopped
¼ teaspoon grated ginger
2 tablespoons unsweetened shredded coconut
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground cardamom
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
Optional: dash of vanilla extract

Instructions

Place all ingredients in blender or vitamix and blend until smooth. Enjoy!

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Ingredient Lists...

Posted on March 05

I can not stress enough that we all need to read every ingredient list and not fall for the "healthy" advertising on the front of packages. If you do not recognize an ingredient, it is likely a chemical. For example, most cereals end with two ingredients.. BHA and BHT. Both of these are highly toxic chemicals to simply give food shelf life.
With that said, not every unknown ingredient is highly toxic, for example, inulin. Inulin is actually a fiber that is good for gut health!

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Non-Dairy Ice Cream....

Posted on February 26

I have been debating whether to post about this non-dairy ice cream because it is by far the best tasting non-dairy ice cream and is only 100 calories per 1/2 cup. Other decent non-dairy brands are usually around 250 calories per 1/2 cup.

It unfortunately has "natural flavoring", so use it as a treat once in awhile. If you over eat it, the erythritol might cause some GI distress.

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Heart Health Benefits of Nuts

Posted on February 25

A growing amount of recent research indicates that consumption of nuts can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease: as nuts contain unsaturated fatty acids, fiber, protein, vitamin E, folate, and several minerals, such as potassium, zinc, and magnesium—and boast additional bioactive chemicals, including phenolics and phytosterols. New findings published in Circulation Research, a journal part of the American Heart Association, suggests that eating more nuts can specifically help heart health among people with type 2 diabetes.

The researchers found that any nut consumption delivered benefits; tree nuts demonstrated the strongest association, but even a small amount of nuts produced an effect. The findings indicated that eating five weekly servings of nuts had a 17 percent lower risk of total cardiovascular disease incidence, compared to people with type 2 diabetes who did not consume many nuts. Moreover, there was a 20 percent lower risk of coronary heart disease, a 34 percent lower risk of cardiovascular disease death, and a 31 percent reduced risk of all-caused mortality.

While the exact biological mechanisms of nuts regarding heart health remain unclear, studies reveal that nuts can improve blood pressure and blood sugar control, metabolism of fats, inflammation and blood vessel wall function.

To keep weight under control, be sure to understand what a serving is per day. You can weigh out an ounce or use a 1/4 cup as a guide to not over eat total calories.

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Friday Funny....

Posted on February 22

Halibut Baked in Parchment Paper

Posted on February 21

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh dill
  • 2 4-ounce halibut fillets (about 1 inch thick) - or other fish you like, such as salmon or char or cod
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 cup scallions sliced thin
  • 1/4 cup red bell pepper small dice
  • 1/4 cup zucchini/yellow squash small dice
  • 1/4 cup snow peas sliced thin

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 450°.
  2. Combine first 4 ingredients in a small bowl; stir until blended.
  3. Cut 2 (15 x 24-inch) pieces of parchment paper. Fold in half crosswise. Draw a large heart half on each piece, with the fold of the paper along the center of the heart. Cut out the heart, and open. Sprinkle both sides of fillets with salt and pepper. Place one fillet near fold of each parchment heart. Top each fillet with half the vegetables and half the oil mixture. Start at the top of the heart and fold edges of parchment, sealing edges with narrow folds. Twist the end tip to secure tightly.
  4. Place packets on a baking sheet. Bake at 450° for ~15 minutes. Place on plates; cut open. Serve immediately.

Red's Frozen Entrees

Posted on February 19
I found these low carb, all natural frozen entrees at Sprout's. They offer a few entrees with riced cauliflower.
 
Chicken and Riced Cauliflower
Total Calories = 230
Net Carbs = 15 grams
Protein = 14 grams
Total Fat = 11 grams
 
Riced Cauliflower - White Meat- Chicken Teriyaki
Total Calories = 210
Net Carbs = 11 grams
Protein = 15 grams
Total Fat = 9 grams
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Friday Funny....

Posted on February 15

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