Monthly Archives: December 2013

Healthy Meals In A Flash

In this rushed and busy world it’s tough to find the time for a proper meal. Our attention is divided in so many directions!  When kids call,  school,  activities and work calls, we usually grab anything we can get our hands on just to keep the hunger pains at bay.
But today is a new day! Here are some suggestions for healthy breakfast meals that won’t take too much time and energy.The first step of eating healthy is planning. With a plan in place, you’ll begin to see how healthy eating can be easier for you and your family.
BREAKFAST
Of course you’ve heard that breakfast is the most important meal of the day.  Not to belabor the point, but it is!  Your body needs some type of nourishment since you haven’t eaten a substantial meal since the night before.  Additionally, you need to have the energy to get through the morning.  It is also a proven fact that individuals who eat a good protein based breakfast eat less throughout the day.  There are a dozen more reasons but suffice it to say that eating breakfast will give you the start to your day to keep you running.
Preparing your breakfast and lunch the night before can be a great start to eating healthy foods. When you oversleep that can blow all your well meant healthy food plans. There is no time to fix your breakfast or lunch so you grab a donut or bagel on the way with less nutritional value.  Taking a little time the night before to gather everything together can go a long way. You’ll be glad you did when you are in a rush the next morning. Here are some ideas for healthy breakfast meals in a flash.
SMOOTHIES – These look just like glorified shakes but they are power packed with good nutrition. Be sure to add fruits such as banana, strawberry, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, mango, pineapple, or pumpkin. You can also add a cup of full fat yogurt,  (greek yogurt is a great way to get good protein) protein powder, flaxseed, chia seeds, hemp seeds as well as, hemp, coconut or almond milks to boost your vitamin, mineral and nutrition intake. Mix your ingredients together in a bowl the night before. In the morning, put them in the waiting blender and in a minute or two, you’re ready to go. You could make your smoothie even healthier by adding spinach, kale or chard.  These items will add vitamins and minerals to your smoothie not to mention the antioxidants you glean from these vegetables.

EGGS – Eggs are quite versatile. If you are in a hurry (as most of us are!) boil them! You can boil them the night before and have them ready to go. Eat one before going out the door to work or cut it up on whole grain toast for a quick sandwich.  Wrap them.  Scramble some eggs in some grass fed butter and wrap them in a whole grain tortilla.  If you have the time, make an omelet with spinach, chard, kale, zucchini, onions, tomatoes, mushrooms or other veggies you prefer.  Eggs are full of protein and not the cholesterol culprit they were once touted as being.  Make sure you eat pastured eggs, which means the hens have been raised out of doors and eat a natural diet of bugs, seeds, and vegetation.  This also means they have been exposed to more Vitamin D which is then passed on to you.

FRUIT – Fruit is a great way to start your day.  You can make a fruit salad the night before using any fruit such as apples, pears, pineapple, blueberries, raspberries, mango and bananas.  Make sure you know which fruits are best to buy organic to eliminate your intake of pesticides. See the EWG’s Clean 15 and Dirty Dozen list HERE. Sprinkle some lemon or lime juice on the salad the night before and then mix your fruit with some Greek yogurt in the morning.  Greek yogurt contains the highest number of protein grams so you have a vitamin rich, whole protein meal.
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Bananas make a great base for any type of nut butter.  Spread your almond or peanut butter on your banana and you’re set.  Make sure you use nut butters without sugar.  There are several good brands of organic nut butters all made without sugar or sweeteners.

YOGURT – Organic plain greek yogurt mixed with fruit, nuts and seeds can make a complete meal.  Mix yogurt with some flax seeds or sunflower seeds, some walnuts and almonds (use raw) or granola.  Greek yogurt has about 14 grams of protein in just 5.5 oz.

TOAST – Toast is just the beginning. Try choosing whole grain and multi-grain breads with seeds. From here, you can add a little protein to help feed your hunger and also stop mid-morning cravings. Add a piece of sliced turkey and cheese, or peanut butter or any type of nut butters such as almond butter, or scrambled egg. The eggs can be scrambled ahead of time and reheated in the morning for a few seconds. You can also pack the turkey or cheese separate from the bread and make a mini sandwich in the morning.  Make sure you add some good healthy fats such as avocado to your breakfast sandwich or cook your egg in butter or coconut oil for a complete meal.
These are just a few ideas to get you started.  What is your favorite breakfast on the run?  Use the suggestions above to help get you moving on the right track even if you are already moving fast.
Stay tuned for more ideas and recipes for meals on the run!
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Benefits of Green Tea

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It is said that the body is a temple. How are you handling yours? To treat your own body a little better and increase your health, you might want to consider the benefits of green tea.

Green tea has been used as a standard drink in Asian countries for years. It is believed that this type of tea will maintain youth and vitality. Now, it has come to the attention of the Western world and more people are discovering how it can enhance their lives as well.

Green tea is still grown and manufactured in Asia. It is cultivated, dried, pressed and processed from a variety of different trees. Some companies still do the work by hand. It is shipped around the world so others can enjoy the benefits that Asian nations have known for years.

Why you may benefit from drinking it. Keep reading.

* Antioxidant protection – Green tea contains antioxidant substances called polyphenols. This tea actually contains a higher concentration of polyphenols than other teas such as black or oolong. Polyphenols are antioxidants that can help neutralize free radical action in the body and may reduce or prevent the damage caused by free radicals.  Free radicals are molecules that damage the body and can lead to health issues such as cancer, heart disease, Alzheimer’s disease, and joint issues.

* Weight loss – This usually gets everyone’s attention! It has been shown that green tea extract led to increased weight loss in subjects participating in studies. Drinking a cup a day can help increase your metabolism so you burn more calories even at rest.

* Dental health – Drinking green tea might be good for your body beginning with your mouth. It has been reported that substances in green tea actually neutralize the bacteria in the mouth that can lead to tooth decay and dental plaque. Drink it regularly for the benefit.

* Disease prevention – Studies are being conducted that show promising results for those with Parkinson’s disease. Drinking green tea can help prevent and slow the progression of the condition. Green tea can help prevent the breakdown of nerve cells in the brain leading to a depletion of dopamine, a neurotransmitter responsible for movement in the body

* Infection management – If it can work on the bacteria in the mouth, it can help in other areas of the body as well. Green tea has been shown to help reverse sepsis in laboratory mice. Drinking green tea can boost your immunity to fight off infections so sepsis does not become an issue.

* Heart disease/Cholesterol – Regularly drinking green tea may help you control your risk of heart disease such as atherosclerosis and coronary artery disease.  Additionally, it has been shown that properties of green tea help to reduce the levels of LDL cholesterol in the blood by blocking its oxidation. Not only that, but it also helps to improve levels of HDL cholesterol and keep the arteries pliable and clear.

This is just the tip of the iceberg with a sampling of the ‘found’ benefits of green tea.

If you are looking for ways to improve your health, try drinking your way to better health in the form of green tea. Have you tried it yet?

*http://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/herb/green-tea

Source: Green tea | University of Maryland Medical Center http://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/herb/green-tea#ixzz2n1xbv6hE