Posts Tagged ‘health’

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(Healthy Living) Sugar and the Immune System

sugarIt is a fairly well known fact that sugar weakens the immune system. But did you know that it most strongly weakens your immune system for the first 4-5 hours after eating it?

Sugar is a fun treat in life and I personally cannot imagine life without a little bit of sugary goodness. However, especially during the cold and flu season, be choosy about when you consume sugar. Times when you are around a lot of people or exposed to more germs are some of the worst times to drink a soda or munch on candy. Instead, select a non-sugary drink on the airplane and encourage your kids to have more of their treats at home instead of at school.

Being mindful of your sugar consumption is a significant factor in your health; not just the amount, but also the timing.

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(Healthy Living) Expeller Pressed Oils

Most oils, such as canola and vegetable oils, that you find on your grocer’s selves are solvent expressed. This means that the oil was removed from the source through a combination of heat, pressure, and chemical extraction methods. However, not only does this process introduce the oil to impure additives and chemicals, but it also decreases the quality and health benefits of the oil.

Expeller pressed oils are extracted by a machine that presses the source, removing the oils, without added heat or chemicals. The yield is not as high (about 60-75%), and the machines are more expensive. This naturally translates into a higher priced product, however the benefits are certainly worth considering.

oilHere are some of the top benefits of using expeller oils:

  • no chemical residue in the oil
  • they evaporate less and are not as volatile, allowing you to use less oil
  • lower cholesterol levels
  • no trans fats
  • less likely to become damaged and rancid during the extraction process (due to exposure to heat), thus increasing the storage life of the oil
  • lower saturated fat levels
  • higher in Omega-3 fatty acids

Expeller pressed oils are the most likely to be found in a health food store or in the health food section of your grocery store. They can often be purchased at a lower price online or through local co-ops.

*Tip: Store your oils in the refrigerator to help further extend the storage life of the oils and to prevent them from becoming rancid.


(Healthy Living) Herb Garden

herbsHerbs allow for great creativity with cooking. They add a burst of flavor to the vegetable rotation and can transform grilled chicken into a gourmet dish.

Growing your own herbs can help give you a fresh motivation to cook healthy dishes and to have fun with food presentation. (How often do you see fried foods garnished with something green?) Your herb garden will also save you money! No more purchasing those bunches of herbs from the store that go bad long before you can use it all. And it is a resource that continues to give all season.

*Tip – Before the first winter freeze, take cuttings from or transplant your herbs into pots and move them inside. You can enjoy your herbs all winter!

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(Healthy Living) Fruit Serving

Find one spot in your day where you can routinely add a serving of fruit to your family’s diet. This might involve incorporating a serving into your cereal or yogurt at breakfast, a dessert substitution, a snack replacement, or an extra small course at dinner. Where ever you choose to add it, just remember that healthy eating doesn’t have to be boring. Fruit adds a splash of flavor and sweetness, giving you so much room to be creative.



(Healthy Living) Getting Started

We are inundated on a daily basis with green campaigns, organic options, vaccine articles (anti and pro), health alternatives, natural remedies, and new studies on how x-ingredient (that is in 50 commonly used products in our homes) is linked to this endless list of different complications, diseases, and side effects. Now don’t get me wrong. I believe in, and am even passionate, about making many of these changes in the lifestyle of my family. However, if you decide that you want to start making some of these changes in your life, it is so easy to get overwhelmed. There is always going to be more that you can change. Don’t lose sight of the fact that the purpose of making these changes is to enhance your life, not to bog it down. Give yourself (and your budget!) some breathing room.

Strive to make one change per month. Pick one thing that is important to you. Research it, experiment with  it, learn about it. Then when you do make that change, it is intentional, non-emotional, educated, and affordable. The tortoise wins the race every time.  And he even gets to enjoy the journey.