Browsing articles tagged with " Fruits Vegetables"
Dec 22, 2013
Karen Spencer

Tips for healthy bones and joints this winter

Low temperatures in winter is another reason for increased pains in the joints and bones, as the body tends to circulate less blood to the peripheral areas as a way of conserving warm blood around the heart. As a result, joints become inflexible, which leads to joint pain. To help you loosen your joints, we have listed down some quick tips, which you can follow.

Follow a healthy diet by including plenty of fruits, vegetables, pulses, cereals and dairy products.

It is important for joint and knee patients to indulge in foods rich in Vitamin K, D and C, as they play an important role in the production of cartilage and help the body absorb calcium for stronger bones. So include oranges, spinach, cabbage and tomatoes in your diet.

Exercising helps maintain body weight and improves flexibility and strengthens the muscles, which support the knees

Lose weight for the sake of your knees. Knees take three to four times your body weight when you walk

Warm baths are beneficial for keeping your joints warm as well as relieving stiffness and pain caused by arthritis

Get an adequate supply of calcium and vitamin D for healthy bones. In the absence of natural sunlight, you could take calcium and vitamin D supplements for a few months

Alcohol, tea, coffee, cola and other fizzy drinks reduce the amount of calcium you absorb, and weaken bones. So, swap your caffeine-fuelled drinks for water and diluted juice

For women above the age of 40, it is important to take a bone mineral density test every year

Pre or Post menopause women should consume nutritious and calcium rich food

(Data courtesy: Dr. Shailedra Patil (Joint Replacement Surgeon ), Wockhardt hospital, Vashi)

Read more Personal Health, Diet Fitness stories on www.healthmeup.com

Jun 7, 2013
Karen Spencer

Diet lowers heart disease risk factor

A diet low in fat and high in fruits, vegetables and grains lowers levels of C-reactive protein.
Previous research has shown that raised levels of C-reactive protein (CRP), a marker of inflammation, increase the risk of heart disease, and maybe other medical conditions too. Research from the University of California, Los Angeles, reveals that a low fat diet with lots of fruit, vegetables and whole grains, results in a dramatic decrease in CRP.

The researchers studied a group of women in a spa setting, where they exercised daily and ate a diet focused on high-fiber carbohydrates – fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. They also ate lean, calcium-rich foods such as non-fat milk and small, lean servings of seafood, poultry and red meat. In two weeks, levels of CRP had almost halved. There was also a significant improvement in cholesterol profile and a reduction in insulin and glucose. The study reveals how a healthful diet can have a profound impact on heart disease risk factors – in this case, as significant as taking medication.


May 9, 2013
Karen Spencer

Cooking your own food has many health benefits – WBRC.com

(CNN) – More time in front of the stove may be the secret to staying fit, according to Michael Pollen, author of the new book, Cooked.

“It is the easiest thing you can do to improve your health,” Pollen said.

Restaurant and processed foods tend to have more sugar, salt and fat than meals we make in our own kitchens.

On average, we consume about 135 more calories per meal when we eat out, compared to what we cook ourselves, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

“You’re not going to cook junk, you’re not going to make french fries, it’s too much work,” Pollen said.

Pollen suggests getting your kids involved.

“Get them to help because the most important thing you can teach your kid for their long term health and happiness is this life skill – how to cook,” he said.

Young people who eat more family meals tend to eat more fruits, vegetables, fiber and calcium-rich foods, said the American Academy of Pediatrics.

“If you cook you’re going to have family meals. You’re all going to sit down together because you’ve done all this work,” Pollen said.

Copyright 2013 CNN. All rights reserved.

Mar 7, 2013
Karen Spencer

Families That Eat Together Have Healthier Diets

CONCORD, Mass.—Today’s American families are stronger than ever and embracing healthier eating habits by taking time to eat together, talk to each other and spend time together during meals, according to a new Welch’s Kitchen Table Report. Research shows families who regularly eat together are more likely to consume more fruits, vegetables, grains and calcium-rich foods.



The survey was conducted on behalf of Welch’s using ORC International’s CARAVAN® survey. It consisted of 864 telephone interviews among parents or guardians of children under 18 years old, who were identified from a national probability sample of 4,049 adults.

Welch’s Kitchen Table Report found that 71% of respondents say their families eat dinner together as often as or more today than their families did when they were children. Nearly 90% of parents say they talk to their children every day about what they think and how they feel. Moreover, family mealtime is an extremely important part of family life with 84% of respondents saying that one of their favorite parts of the day is when their family eats together. These meals are taking place at the kitchen table, with 68% of respondents reporting they eat most meals or snacks together as a family at the table.

“The truth is parents are making quality time a priority and are using mealtime to share a moment with their children. In fact, research has shown an association between regular family meals and improved family nutrition and overall well-being. In my experience, families who eat together are happier, healthier, and stronger,” said Sarah-Jane Bedwell, registered dietitian and Welch’s Health and Nutrition Advisory Panel member.

Data also found families are eating dinner together most night of the week with 75% saying they eat together four or more nights a week, and 34% eating together seven nights a week on average.

However, the modern American family still faces challenges that impact family mealtime such as a lack of time and financial concerns. Twenty percent of survey respondents cite the lack of time to cook meals, especially healthy meals, as a top barrier to family mealtimes. The same number cites busy schedules as another reason it is difficult to eat meals together as a family.

Dec 29, 2012
Karen Spencer

Cut the fat, keep the flavour

By Mini Padikkal — Nothing raises your cholesterol more than saturated fat. While cholesterol in your blood can come from dietary sources of cholesterol, such as egg yolks, it mainly comes from saturated fat. Saturated fat can even worsen your insulin resistance, making it harder to control your blood sugar.
Diet therapy usually works best on those with the worst cholesterol-the highest LDLs or lowest HDLs- those who need help the most. We cannot expect all foods to work the same way on all people. Individuals react differently, just as they do to cholesterol – lowering drugs. Experiment to find which foods work best for you.
Specifically:
• Eat plenty of fruits, vegetables, legumes and high soluble fiber grains such as oats, and sea food, especially fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, sardines and tuna.
• Cut back on saturated animal fats found in whole milk, cheese, meat fat, and poultry skin. This will help to reduce your levels of detrimental LDL cholesterol and raise your good HDL cholesterol.
• Limit your intake of trans fatty acids found in hard margarines and processed foods. This will help keep down LDL levels.
• Restrict omega-6 type vegetable oils such as corn and safflower oil, also found in margarine, vegetable shortenings, and lots of processed foods. The oils are incorporated into LDL cholesterol particles where they are readily oxidized, converted to a toxic form that can destroy arteries.
• Don’t go on an extremely low fat diet, it may be counterproductive. Eat a moderate amount of fat, favoring foods high in monounsaturated fats, such as olive oil and canola oil, avocados and nuts.
• Extra-important: eat lots of antioxidant compounds concentrated in fruits, vegetables, nuts and olive oil, including vitamin C, and vitamin E, and beta carotene. They may keep LDL cholesterol safe from toxic changes that threaten arteries and promote heart attacks.
• Get enough calcium-rich foods, which may help reduce the absorption of saturated fat.
• Take advantage of healthful cookware, such as microwave ovens, vegetable steamers, pressure cookers and nonstick pots and pans. These help foods keep their nutrients and make cooking them a little easier as well.
Saturated fat is not your enemy. There is even more dangerous one hidden fat in some of your favorite foods. Trans fatty acids, created when vegetable oils are hydrogenated or hardened into margarine or vegetable shortening, and providing to be as bad as saturated fats in raising cholesterol. Whenever you see these words on a food label ingredient list-“hydrogenated” or “partially hydrogenated vegetable oil” especially as the first ingredient. It is another term for trans fatty acids. It is a cause for alarm. This unusual kind of super fat raises your LDL cholesterol, may lower your HDL, increases your risk of diabetes, heart disease, and possibly cancer. Baked goods, French fries, stick margarine, and hydrogenated vegetable oils are prime sources.
(The writer is a dietician at Atlas Medical Centre , Al Khuwair , Muscat.)

Oct 28, 2012
Karen Spencer

The smart way to kids’ stomach

It has been the mothers’ secret art to overcome the disinterest of children in most nutritious vegetables and fruits and feed them the necessary vitamins and minerals by camouflaging these. The new age mothers too, believe that it does not need to be a struggle or a battle of wills, where in they enforce the kids to eat something. They replace resistance with enthusiasm — with an extra dash of seasoning.

TOI takes sneak peak into the kitchens of some mothers to figure out their secret recipe.

Understanding children’s taste buds is the key to their stomach, feel many new-age mothers in the city.

“It is very important to understand your child’s taste. While many kids love spicy food, others like to keep their diet simple, but not bland. For instance those who love sauces can be easily fed a variety of vegetables,” says Kurusha Walia, mother of a five-year-old daughter and eight-year-old son residing in Sector 35.

Inspiration and generating curiosity is the way and not imposing authority, say a set of mothers. They believe it is easier to feed nutritious food to children when they are excited about doing something, rather when they’re threatened, cajoled or bribed.

The tricky bit, though, is finding a way of getting them genuinely excited about something they are currently resisting.

Honey Dhir suggests “vegetable art”, adding, “Children have an almost irresistible urge to use, eat or drink anything they have enjoyed making themselves.” An interior decorator and mother of a toddler, she makes sure to involve her daughter in the vegetable making exercise.

“Vegetable art is a big hit with children and it makes mom’s task easier of feeding a healthy diet. My daughter loves to carve out shapes and figurines out of fruits, vegetables and eats them without any protest. This also helps channelize her energy,” she says. Dhir has posted photographs of her vegetable art on Facebook to help other mothers facing similar problem.

For Madhumita Das, feeding “roti-sabzi” to her six-year-old twin daughters had been tiresome, until she devised what she calls “smart disguise”. “It’s always a struggle to get them to eat fruits and vegetables. So I’ve found a creative way to deal with this. I chop the vegetables into small pieces, boil them and mix in the flour while making a dough,” says Das. This doesn’t let them know they are eating vegetables and they enjoy the taste as well, she adds.

She adds, “Mothers can include vegetables like spinach, beans, capsicum, cabbage, mint and pulses to make healthy “paranthas” for kids.

Manimajra resident Rekha Puri experiments with breads while feeding her eight-year-old son. “Children get bored easily and hence, you can’t make them eat chapatti-curry and ‘paranthas’ every day,” she says, adding, “So, I cut sandwiches in different designs and dress them up with tomato ketchup and mustard, after filling it vegetables mixed in fresh cream. I ask my son to make his favourite cartoon character on the sandwich andhe gets all excited to eat it.”

Navdeep Kaur suggests some more creative methods to lure kids with presentation of the food.

“A simple example would be while serving rice, place the rice in different designs, like make a Mickey-face and fill curd in one ear, vegetable in the other and ‘dal’ in the face,” says the mother of an 11-year-old son. Dieticians say children should be encouraged to eat healthy at a young age as it helps develop healthy eating patterns. Their meals should include proteins as they are low on calories and high on vitamins, and minerals and calcium rich diets.

Oct 10, 2012
Karen Spencer

Make Meals in Minutes

(Photo)

Balancing the demands of family and careers may leave little time for meal preparation. Days are busy and there is less time than ever to prepare a nutritious dinner, but mealtime doesn’t have to be difficult or time consuming. With a little planning, easy home meals can become a reality.

Meals prepared at home are more budget-friendly than restaurant meals and provide other benefits as well. Kids who eat more meals at home tend to eat more fruits, vegetables, fiber and calcium-rich dairy foods. Eating meals together increases the enjoyment of the meal and encourages conversations about the day’s activities. Follow these tips to prepare meals in a hurry:

*Plan — this increases the likelihood that meals will be nutritious. Be sure to include a variety of foods from all of the food groups for the forty-plus nutrients you need for good health. If you leave a Food Group out of your meal plan you may miss out on key nutrients. For example, Dairy Group Foods are excellent sources of bone-strengthening calcium and provide other essential nutrients important for good health.

*Love your leftovers — use leftovers to save time and money. Make planned leftovers by doubling the recipe; serve half for a meal and refrigerate or freeze the other portion to use later. Leftovers from roast beef or chicken can be used to make soups or sandwiches. Roasted chicken leftovers can be used to make tortilla soup or chicken quesadillas. To turn leftover roast beef into Italian beef sandwiches, place sliced beef on a hard roll, top with sauted onions and green peppers, and add shredded mozzarella cheese. Pop in the oven open-faced for ten minutes until cheese is melted. Round out the meal with a side salad and a glass of ice cold milk.

*Keep a well-stocked pantry and fridge — this will help you put meals together in a flash. Keep a variety of pre-shredded and sliced cheeses, plain yogurt and low-fat sour cream, fresh vegetables, ready to eat salads, tortilla, fresh fruit, eggs, milk and flavored milk in the fridge. Stock the pantry with potatoes, whole grain pasta, brown rice, pasta sauce, canned fruits, vegetables and beans.

*Take some shortcuts — not all meal components have to be made from scratch. Shop for pre-cooked items like deli roasted chicken or fresh pizza. Purchase a prepared salad from the grocery deli and grab bread or rolls from the bakery. For a simple dessert pick up fresh berries or other fruits and top with vanilla yogurt.

*Try these quick and easy recipes for dinner:

BBQ Ranch Quesadilla Wedges

1 bag (16-ounce) frozen pepper stir-fry blend (green, red and yellow peppers and onions)

1/4 cup barbecue sauce

1/2 cup light ranch dressing

1 tablespoon butter, softened

8(8-inch) flour tortillas

1 cup prepared barbecue shredded beef

3/4 cup shredded Cheddar cheese

Prepare stir-fry pepper blend according to package directions. Mix barbecue sauce and ranch dressing and set aside. Spread butter evenly on 1 side of each tortilla and layer barbecue beef, stir-fry blend, and cheese evenly on unbuttered side of 4 tortillas and cover with remaining tortillas, butter side up. Grill each quesadilla in large skillet over medium heat for 3 minutes on each side or until golden and cheese melts. Cut into wedges and serve with barbecue ranch dipping sauce. Makes 8 servings.

Nutrition Facts: 340 calories, 15g fat, 15g protein, 20% daily value for calcium

Easy, Cheesy Calzone

16 ounces prepared pizza dough

1/2 cup pizza sauce

2 cups shredded part-skim mozzarella

3 cups cooked, chopped broccoli, drained

1 tablespoon butter, melted

Preheat oven to 400F. Grease a baking sheet. On a lightly floured surface, roll dough to form a 9″x 14″ rectangle, about 1/4″ thick. Transfer to prepared baking sheet. Spread pizza sauce over half of the dough. Sprinkle cheese over entire piece of dough to within half inch of all of the edges. Layer broccoli on one half of the 14″‘ side (the long side) of the dough. Fold dough in half over the cheese and broccoli filling. Seal edges of the calzone by pressing with the tines of a fork. Prick top. Brush top with butter. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until crust is lightly browned. Allow to cool for 5 minutes before cutting. Makes 8 servings.

Nutrition Facts: 325 calories, 10g fat, 20g protein, 20% daily value for calcium.

For more information on the health benefits of dairy, visit www.stldairycouncil.org or contact Kelly Maher RD, LD with St. Louis District Dairy Council: call (314)835-9668, or e-mail:kmaher@stldairycouncil.org

Aug 9, 2012
Karen Spencer

Surprising dangers found in nutritional supplements

More than half of American adults take nutritional supplements, but they are not without risk. The Food and Drug Administration has received more than 6,000 reports of serious adverse events in the past five years.

A Consumer Reports investigation has found many surprising dangers in vitamins and supplements, which are largely unregulated products. Moreover, there’s increasing evidence that there may be few, if any, benefits.

For example, a study published in June showed that calcium supplements increased the risk of heart attack by 86 percent compared with the group who didn’t get them. On the other hand, that same study showed eating calcium-rich foods can protect your heart.

A recent study of antioxidant supplements showed that high doses of some “may increase cancer risk” and not reduce it.

Even more troubling, some supplements have turned out to contain prescription drugs, such as Viagra and Cialis, that were not on the label. The FDA says supplements spiked with prescription drugs are “the largest threat” to consumer safety. There have been more than 400 recalls of such products since 2008.

Even with uncontaminated vitamins and minerals, the labels don’t tell the whole story because generally, the FDA does not require manufacturers to include warning labels.

When Consumer Reports checked out the labels on more than 200 bottles of supplements, it found just one in three listed possible adverse reactions.

In some cases, the potential risks of supplements outweigh their benefits. Consumer Reports says that if you’re generally healthy, you can skip them. Eating a diet that includes fruits, vegetables, grains, dairy, and protein is the best way to go.

However, for those on a restricted diet or with certain medical conditions, there are some supplements you may need to take. Of course, check with your doctor first.

Government experts say reports of problems related to supplements are quite likely to be underreported. If you experience a problem, you can report it to the Food and Drug Administration at www.fda.gov/Safety/MedWatch or 800-332-1088.

Consumer Reports’ complete investigation is available online.

Aug 8, 2012
Karen Spencer

Nutrition supplement dangers

  Action News


More than half of American adults take nutritional supplements. They are not without risk. The Food and Drug Administration has received more than 6,000 reports of serious adverse events in the last five years.

A Consumer Reports investigation has found many surprising dangers in vitamins and supplements, which are largely unregulated products. Moreover, there’s increasing evidence that there may be few, if any, benefits.

For example, a study published in June showed that calcium supplements increased the risk of heart attack by 86 percent compared with the group who didn’t get them. On the other hand, that same study showed eating calcium-rich foods can protect your heart.

A recent study of antioxidant supplements showed that high doses of some “may increase cancer risk” and not reduce it.

Even more troubling – some supplements have turned out to contain prescription drugs, such as Viagra and Cialis, that were not on the label. The FDA says supplements spiked with prescription drugs are “the largest threat” to consumer safety. There have been more than 400 recalls of such products since 2008.

Even with uncontaminated vitamins and minerals, the labels don’t tell the whole story because generally, the FDA does not require manufacturers to include warning labels.

When Consumer Reports checked out the labels on more than 200 bottles of supplements, it found just one in three listed possible adverse reactions.

In some cases, the potential risks of supplements outweigh their benefits. Consumer Reports says that if you’re generally healthy, you can skip them. Eating a diet that includes fruits, vegetables, grains, dairy, and protein is the best way to go.

However, for those on a restricted diet or with certain medical conditions, there are some supplements you may need to take. Of course, check with your doctor first.

Government experts say reports of problems related to supplements are quite likely to be underreported. If you experience a problem, you can report it to the Food and Drug

LINK: http://www.fda.gov/

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Aug 7, 2012
Karen Spencer

Consumer Reports: Supplements are unregulated, can be dangerous

More than half of American adults take nutritional supplements. They are not without risk.

The Food and Drug Administration has received more than 6,000 reports of serious adverse events in the last five years.

A Consumer Reports investigation has found many surprising dangers in vitamins and supplements, which are largely unregulated products. Moreover, there’s increasing evidence that there may be few, if any, benefits.

For example, a study published in June showed that calcium supplements increased the risk of heart attack by 86 percent compared with the group who didn’t get them. On the other hand, that same study showed eating calcium-rich foods can protect your heart.

A recent study of antioxidant supplements showed that high doses of some “may increase cancer risk” and not reduce it.

Even more troubling—some supplements have turned out to contain prescription drugs, such as Viagra and Cialis, that were not on the label.
 
The FDA says supplements spiked with prescription drugs are “the largest threat” to consumer safety. There have been more than 400 recalls of such products since 2008.

Even with uncontaminated vitamins and minerals, the labels don’t tell the whole story because generally, the FDA does not require manufacturers to include warning labels.

When Consumer Reports checked out the labels on more than 200 bottles of supplements, it found just one in three listed possible adverse reactions.

In some cases, the potential risks of supplements outweigh their benefits. Consumer Reports says that if you’re generally healthy, you can skip them. Eating a diet that includes fruits, vegetables, grains, dairy, and protein is the best way to go.

However, for those on a restricted diet or with certain medical conditions, there are some supplements you may need to take. Of course, check with your doctor first.

Government experts say reports of problems related to supplements are quite likely to be under-reported. If you experience a problem, you can report it to the Food and Drug Administration at FDA.gov/medwatch or 800-332-1088.

Complete Ratings and recommendations on all kinds of products, including appliances, cars trucks, and electronic gear, are available on Consumer Reports’ website. Subscribe to ConsumerReports.org.
 

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