Healthy Cooking is a Must for Families


When it comes to cooking healthy meals for our families, there is always some degree of dissention among the ranks.
The good news is that there are recipes that are very healthy but the healthy nature of these recipes is somewhat disguised. What they do not know in these instances truly should not bring harm their way (outside of allergies, which should never be ignored).

Healthy cooking is often difficult as most of us do not want to spend time planning and preparing meals that our families refuse to eat. At the same time, we want our families to be healthy so we feel compelled to learn new and improved ways of cooking healthy foods for our family to enjoy (and unfortunately in some cases scorn).

With weight and nutrition being known as the culprit in so many health conditions it is impossible to ignore the importance of not only eating healthy ourselves but also of teaching our children the importance of eating healthy. One way to insure that your loved ones are in fact eating healthy is to make sure that you are cooking healthy and nutritious foods for them. This does not mean that you cannot enjoy the occasional calorie splurge or even that you shouldn’t. The key to cooking healthy is learning to control portions and understanding the importance of moderation.

For those that are hoping to incorporate healthy cooking habits into their daily routines, there are no more resources available than ever before in order to assist you in those endeavors. You can seek the services of a professional nutritionist, your doctor can offer advice, you can find all kinds of books on healthy eating, cooking, and living at your local library, and the Internet is an outstanding source of all kinds of information when it comes to leading a healthier lifestyle all around.

There are many books and magazines that are filled with recipes that encourage healthy cooking and eating habits. If you truly love to cook, then there is no shortage of recipes that you can try out along the way. The really good news is that you can incorporate healthy cooking into your cooking routine whether you are cooking for one or a household of ten.

There are many that will argue that cooking healthy food costs more than cooking the prepackaged foods that pack on the calories and additives. The truth of the matter is that when you compare the costs with the medical bills of the future for failing to do so, they seem rather slight by comparison. Yes, good food costs more money. In many cases, that is a simple fact of life. However, by learning portion control and eating the proper portions you just may discover that you are actually spending less as you adjust to the proper amounts of food you should be consuming in order to maintain a healthy and active lifestyle.

Cooking healthy isn’t an overnight change; it is a lifestyle change that should be implemented one step at a time. You do not have to go into your kitchen and through out every little thing that you deem ‘unhealthy’ only work to not buy more of these items once they’ve been used. Make wiser decisions when purchasing fats for food preparation and you will discover that you’ve made a vitally important step in the process of incorporating healthy cooking and eating habits in your home.

It’s those small steps you take towards your goal of cooking healthy foods for your family that will matter far more than any giant leap. Before you know it you will find that you all have more energy and a better sense of overall health than you would have imagined before changing your cooking habits. If that isn’t enough to encourage you however, you can always check out the excuse to go shopping for new clothes after you drop a size or two.

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Avoid Food/Beverages That Cause Acid Reflux, Change Your Lifestyle

15356571515 79f82cf47e Avoid Food/Beverages That Cause Acid Reflux, Change Your Lifestyle
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Many people get hungry because they lack food. Children become malnourished if they are not given the right amount of food which contains the needed vitamins and minerals which in turn make the body strong and healthy.

The fact is, not all foods are healthy. The most popular unhealthy food is ‘junk foods’. Just as the word suggests, junk, which means it is like garbage. But many people are still patronizing these kinds of food.

People diagnosed with certain diseases often are given a list of foods to avoid. And this is true with the case of a person having acid reflux. Acid reflux or the GERD is a condition wherein stomach acids go back to the esophagus because of the improper functioning of the lower esophageal sphincter. If this condition is not treated, it will only get worse which can cause serious complications.

You can effectively tell if you have acid reflux if you experience symptoms like sour taste, burning sensation in the chest or upper abdomen and your throat’s back, excessive belching, breathing difficulties, tightness of throat, difficulty in swallowing food, and bad breath.

If you frequently experience these symptoms, then you probably have acid reflux. Visit your doctor to get an accurate diagnosis, so that you will know the severity of your condition.

There are certain beverages and foods which cause acid reflux, and this includes the following:

– chocolate
– coffee
– spearmint and peppermint
– alcoholic drinks
– fruit juices
– fatty foods and fried foods
– onions
– citrus fruits
– spicy foods
– products which are tomato-based
– caffeinated drinks

A change in your diet is the most effective way to deal with acid reflux. Although at first you may feel deprived of these foods, think of what will happen if you continue to eat or drink these beverages and foods.

Start your change in diet by keeping a record of your food intake. In this manner, you can tell which of the foods or beverages causes your acid reflux. So every time you experience that burning sensation, take note of what you’ve actually eaten. Once you have the list accomplished, put it somewhere where you can easily see it, like the refrigerator.

A lifestyle change may seem rather difficult. Your doctor can greatly help you in your transition. The very first thing that you should do is to set a goal, like for instance eating small meals, while avoiding those above-mentioned foods. Slowly quit smoking and drinking. Of course, you can’t expect an abrupt change.

Every time you feel any of the symptoms, you will be instantly reminded that you’re on the wrong path. Self-discipline is very much important to attain a successful lifestyle change.

While many people are taking antacids, others are finding it better to stick with the natural way. On the long run, antacids are not that good for your body, even to your stomach. It would be better to start changing your lifestyle, the sooner the better.

Besides, a healthy lifestyle doesn’t only prevent acid reflux but other diseases as well. You will gain more benefit in changing your life entirely, especially regarding food eating habits. Eat the right kinds of food at the right amount, and you’ll stay healthy. Prevent acid reflux, change…

Blood Pressure Control = Health Control

15545888181 a5d83942e4 Blood Pressure Control = Health Control
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Do you realize by taking control of your blood pressure you can also take control of your health?
Who doesn’t want to have a healthy and long life? Taking care of your body can help ensure you get to endure that long healthy lifestyle you want.

You should be receiving regular blood pressure checks at your regular doctor visits. If you want to check it more often than you go to the doctor, you can purchase a home device that lets you monitor your blood pressure. There are different kinds to choose from.

Two of those are the aneroid and digital monitor. There are ups and downs to both monitors so you want to choose which one is best for you. The aneroid monitor uses a pointer to let you read your blood pressure. The digital monitor displays your reading on a screen which makes it easier to read.

The aneroid monitor is cheaper than the digital but requires more work from you. Check them out and even discuss with your doctor which one might be better for you. Once you purchase it, have your doctor show you how to effectively use it.

Among taking your own blood pressure readings, you can double check your lifestyle habits. Are you on a healthy diet? Eating healthy will help keep your blood pressure low and normal. Cut back on salt and sodium if you can’t get rid of it altogether. Opt for seasonings instead.

Introduce more vegetables and fresh fruits into your diet. Once you become used to eating certain foods, it will be easier to do it every day. Before you know it you will be in the habit of eating healthy foods and won’t think twice before doing so.

If you use tobacco or drink excessive amounts of alcohol try to cut back or refrain completely. These will raise your blood pressure putting you at more risk for a stroke or heart disease.

If you cannot quit these on your own there are plenty of resources and medications to help you. Talk with your doctor about the best way to go about quitting.

Would you consider yourself at a healthy weight or overweight? Overweight people are more prone to developing high blood pressure and if this is your case, try to lose at least ten pounds. You should see results in your blood pressure as well as the way you feel.

If you are not already regularly physically active, try to do at least thirty minutes of physical activity or exercise every day. This will help lower your blood pressure as well as make you feel a whole lot better.

If you find yourself lacking motivation to do some of these things, talk with a friend or relative that could buddy up with you. Having someone to exercise with or take on a challenge such as quitting smoking or drinking can help drastically.

Having high blood pressure puts your health at risk and that alone should be motivation but to some it isn’t. Do not be discouraged, there are many ways to help lower your blood pressure.

If these lifestyle changes do not help, consider medication. There are many different kinds of blood pressure medications and sometimes they need to be combined with a healthy lifestyle to work more effectively.

If you have questions or concerns about your blood pressure talk with your doctor. Let them know what you want and they can help find the way that is best for you to control or maintain your blood pressure letting you control your health as well.

Steps to Help Reduce Your Risk of Heart Disease

According to the American Heart Association, heart disease is responsible for almost 1 million deaths annually in the United States, half of which are women. The good news is that many of the risk factors that lead to heart disease – obesity, smoking and a sedentary lifestyle, to name just a few – can be remedied.

“Simple changes such as watching what you eat and exercising are two powerful steps in helping to reduce your risk of heart disease,” said Dr. Suzanne Steinbaum, a cardiologist at New York’s Beth Israel Medical Center.

Here are some simple tips to help reduce your risk of developing heart disease.

* Add heart-smart foods. Living a heart-healthy lifestyle does not mean giving up delicious foods. Fruits, vegetables and whole grains are heart-healthy winners. Include Minute Maid Premium Heart Wise, the only orange juice proven to help lower your cholesterol level.

* Get a move on. Physical activity is essential for a healthy heart. Start small. Take the stairs instead of the elevator, squeeze in a 15-minute walk during your day or park your car in the farthest parking spot at the grocery store.

* Weigh your options. Being overweight puts your heart at risk. If you are overweight, losing as little as 5 percent to 10 percent of your current weight can help reduce your risk for heart disease. Healthy eating and physical activity can help you reach your healthy weight goals.

* Know your numbers. Learn about your own risks for heart disease. Keep tabs on your health and pay attention to any abnormal signs and symptoms. Visit your health care professional and have your cholesterol checked regularly.

Minute Maid has partnered with WomenHeart: The National Coalition for Women with Heart Disease to help educate women about heart disease and improve the quality of life for those living with the disease.

As part of this awareness campaign, people are invited to take the Minute Maid Premium Heart Wise 8-Week Challenge for Health and Wellness, a program that encourages people to commit to a healthier lifestyle, including drinking two 8-fluid-ounce servings of Minute Maid Premium Heart Wise orange juice daily with meals.

Lifestyle Change for Natural Migraine Prevention

Migraine sufferers are turning to non-pharmacological options to reduce the number of headaches they have. Prophylactic drugs aimed at migraine prevention can have many unpleasant side effects and do not work at all for some migraineurs (people who have chronic migraines).

A migraineur’s lifestyle impacts the severity and frequency of the attacks and lifestyle changes, like those mentioned below can prevent migraine recurrence.

Sleep:

Migraineurs need to learn how much sleep they need and make sure they do not get too little sleep or too much more than they need. Patients who do not get enough sleep during the workweek who try to make up for it over the weekend may trigger a headache.

Exercise:

Physical exertion in moderation is good for everyone, including migraineurs. Establishing a regular exercise routine, at least 20-40 minutes of physical activity a minimum of three times a week, relieves stress that triggers headaches and exercise-induced endorphins are a natural analgesic.

Stress Management:

Migraineurs are susceptible to attacks during periods of high stress. If stress is unavoidable, they should build time for stress relief into their routine to prevent a headache. Good stress management techniques for migraineurs are massage, exercise, adequate sleep and a healthy diet.

Eating:

Migraineurs should eat regular meals at roughly the same time daily and not skip a meal unless it is an emergency. A good, healthy breakfast goes a long way in preventing headaches.

The most important thing is to be consistent with any lifestyle change. Migraineurs need regular behavior patterns and they must be applied on weekends and holidays, not just during the week. Getting out of sync two days a week by sleeping in, skipping meals, or staying up late defeats the purpose of lifestyle changes and upsets the balance created by having a pattern the rest of the week.

Healthy Lifestyle Can Minimize Pregnancy Risk Factors

It’s every couple’s dream to start building a family of their own by having a healthy baby. Pregnancy appears to be a natural expectation from any healthy couple but in a world where lifestyles are always on the go, planning is necessary to make sure that everything goes well.
Being a party animal, getting by on a little sleep, too much alcohol and cigars – all these will have to take a back seat in order to accommodate the beginning of a new life.
Several months prior to conception, both the man and the woman should make sure they are practicing a healthy lifestyle to keep their body in a good condition. This can help minimize risk factors that can hurt the baby or the future parents.
Sometimes, it only takes a healthy lifestyle change to boost the chances of pregnancy especially those who are having problems with infertility and other medical conditions.
The first two to four weeks of pregnancy is very critical. During this time, a tiny placenta and embryo are already attached to the uterine wall. The baby’s development can be greatly affected by the following health and lifestyle issues:
· Serious birth defect called spina bifida is a condition characterized by a baby born with a spine that is not closed. To help prevent this condition, many food items, such as bread, bagels and breakfast cereal, are fortified with folic acid which is effective in reducing the risk of this birth defect.
· Alcohol is associated to premature delivery, mental retardation, birth defects and low-birth-weight babies.
· Smoking can cause conception difficulties and may increase the risk of preterm labor and low birth weight.
· Pregnant women should consult their physicians before taking any over-the-counter and prescription drugs due to the health risk it may cause to the unborn. Non-Steroidal Anti-inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs) such as aspirin, aspirin compounds and ibuprofen can cause a decrease in the amount of amniotic fluid and cause closure of the ductus arteriosa, an important blood vessel in the baby.
· Cocaine use is detrimental and life-threatening to both mother and baby.
· Pregnant women who have periodontal infections and gum disease can increase the risk of pre-term delivery up to eightfold. Babies born to mothers with these infections are twice as likely to be admitted to a neonatal intensive care unit, and three times more likely to need hospitalization beyond seven days.
According to Michael Greene, MD, Director of Obstetrics at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, obesity is an especially critical issue for women of childbearing age. “Obesity is associated with many complications, because it greatly increases a woman’s risk of developing high blood sugar and diabetes—either before they get pregnant or during their pregnancy,” adds Greene.
The unborn is placed at high risk for a variety of congenital malformations, including defects of the brain and spinal cord brought about by the mother’s obesity and diabetes. The babies are likely to grow large in size making it difficult to have normal delivery and may require ceasarean section.
Depression can also affect pregnancy. Women who get depressed when during pregnancy tend to smoke, drink alcohol or use illegal drugs which are harmful to the baby. Difficulty bonding with the baby and postpartum depression may also occur which is usual in women with a history of depressive illness. The cortisol hormone that the body releases during times of stress seems to make conception more difficult. However, exercise and getting plenty of sleep can help reduce stress.
Women are adviced to see either a doctor or midwife at least 3 months before getting pregnant for pre-conception counseling. This will help women learn about what steps to take to ensure a healthy pregnancy. Keeping a healthy lifestyle over the years can translate into a healthy pregnancy especially when it’s past the prime of fertility years.

The Low Glycemic Index Diet And Its Benefits For Diabetics

The Low Glycemic Index Diet And Its Benefits For Diabetics

The popular Low Glycemic Index Diet is certainly nothing new and is proven to work both as a weight loss plan and in controlling diabetes. An astounding number of Americans currently suffer from diabetes, a good majority of which experience symptoms due to improper weight management.

This Lower GI Diet is especially helpful to diabetics because it incorporates foods with a low Glycemic Index to control the amount of sugars and carbohydrates your body is forced to regulate. If you have been diagnosed with diabetes or are looking to create a healthy lifestyle and manage your weight, speak with your primary physician about beginning a proper Glycemic Index Diet.

The best benefits of starting a Glycemic Index Diet for diabetics include:

The inclusion of some carbohydrates:

Individuals with diabetes are severely discouraged from beginning a diet that restricts the intake of carbohydrates. Even though your carbohydrate level should be monitored since your body turns most carbs into sugar, every adult diet should include at least 130 grams of carbohydrates each day. These carbohydrates work as fuel for the body, providing you with much needed vitamins and minerals to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

The controlling of your diabetes with a Glycemic Index Diet alone:

If you have been diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes, usually associated as a major side effect from being obese, you may be able to control your condition without medications or injections. By carefully monitoring your Glycemic Index, you can work to control what food items your body must work to process. Since this diet only includes foods that can be successfully processed by a diabetic’s body, your body will not have to try to process foods that can be potentially harmful.

The quality foods included on the Glycemic Index Diet:

The foods allowed on the Glycemic Index Diet are wholesome and healthy. Many fresh fruits and vegetables are included in the diet, as well as whole grains and lean meats. This diet will allow you to eat healthy, and therefore to lead a healthier lifestyle. Furthermore, many of your favorite foods are on the Glycemic Index Diet list, so you can still enjoy the occasional treat.

The prevention of other diseases:

The Low Glycemic Index Diet also affects the body in the prevention of other diseases besides diabetes. Many individuals at risk for heart disease should look into starting a Low Glycemic Index Diet to protect themselves against this deadly disease. Researchers have found that a Low Glycemic Index Diet works better against preventing heart disease than a traditional low fat diet, and it is much more effective than the popular low carbohydrate fad diets.

Before you begin any diet or lifestyle change, be sure to contact your primary care provider. Speaking with this professional individual will allow you to completely understand the correct way of beginning the diet and ensure the diet will work best for someone in your situation. Furthermore, you will want to address any potential medical problems that may result from beginning a Low Glycemic Index Diet to ensure that you will remain healthy while seeking to begin a better lifestyle.

Remember, the Low Glycemic Index Diet is not a typical diet. Instead it is a lifestyle change. Once you begin your trip down this road, you should strive to remain on the diet on a long term basis. If you are a diabetic, you may not be able to allow yourself binges on unhealthy foods without paying a costly penalty, so use this diet to your advantage in controlling your condition.

Improve Your Dog’s Health With Natural Dog Health Care


Everyone who has a dog and who is conscientious about their own health will clearly see the benefits of providing a similar lifestyle for their pet.
That not only means finding a good place for your dog to live, but also providing for his health.

Commit yourself to your dog’s health by giving your dog the best in natural dog health care. As with humans, natural health care
for dogs is often an advantageous alternative to chemical treatment.

If you want your dog to have the benefit of providing you with the companionship and entertainment that you need, then you really should make that effort to take care of his needs.

Natural dog health focuses on taking care of your dog’s needs by using the best natural products you can find. Your dog has special needs; and you must to ensure that these needs are met on a regular basis if you want to see your dog live a long and healthy life.

Natural dog health care is also about purchasing the natural products that will best benefit your dog. A healthy dog is a happy dog; and when you take out your friend to play, everyone you encounter will see exactly how much love and dedication you have by giving your dog the best treatment and lifestyle possible.

The shiny coat and healthy look will be all the evidence they need. You will also be doing the best for yourself by adapting the natural dog care lifestyle, since you will have your friend around for a long time.

His immune system will be strong and he will enjoy partaking in the games that you will play. Natural dog health is also about changing your lifestyle so that you can be able to incorporate it in the way that you take care of your dog.

That means that you too should consider making natural health a part of you life. This could mean purchasing products that are natural and therefore good for your health.

By combining both methods, both you and your dog can life a happy and healthy life.

Tips for Controlling Your Blood Pressure

14511050470 35c5da6dd2 Tips for Controlling Your Blood Pressure
Source: Flickr

Do you have high blood pressure or at risk to develop high blood pressure? If so do not be discouraged, there are ways of controlling and lowering your blood pressure without medication. Simple lifestyle habits are the most common causes for high blood pressure and easily helped.

Keep in mind that sometimes everything you try may not work. You might have to have the help of medication along with your healthier lifestyle. Talk with your doctor first. They will be able to assist you with the best option for your lifestyle.

The first thing you can do is achieve a healthy weight if you aren’t already. Being overweight is a great risk for developing high blood pressure. You can avoid this by watching your diet and reaching your healthy weight.

If you are unsure of what your healthy weight should be, you should talk to your doctor. You can even find a site online that lets you calculate your BMI (body mass index) and this will tell you what your healthy weight is.

Exercising should be a normal part of your lifestyle. Not everyone enjoys exercising and even if you are one of those people, you can still add it to your every day routine. Only thirty minutes a day of exercise will greatly decrease your risk of high blood pressure.

If you cannot set aside thirty minutes at one time, do ten minutes at a time. This is just as effective and you can get thirty minutes in your day quicker and easier than you thought. You can walk or run or whatever you like.

Your diet plays a major role in your blood pressure levels as well. A high intake of salt and sodium can greatly increase your risks. Try to limit yourself on salt and sodium intake and have your doctor advise you on the recommended amount according to your blood pressure levels.

Using herbs and spices in place of salt is a great way to reduce your salt intake. When you go out to eat somewhere, suggest ‘no salt’ or ask if they add salt so you know if you should or not. Many people consume tons more salt than they really should and do not even know it.

Stress plays a big role in high blood pressure and unfortunately many people suffer from stress. The best way to help your own is by finding a relaxation technique that works best for you. Try meditating, or something that has always relaxed you before. Let the stress of the day leave you and enjoy your stress free time. Take as long as you want to do this.

While trying to change your lifestyle habits, try to keep a record as well. Grab a notebook or journal and write down what you did and check your blood pressure often. Note if it is making a difference or staying the same.

If lifestyle changes do not help as much as you would like, you might consider talking with your doctor about taking medication. Sometimes lifestyle changes alone aren’t as effective unless used with medication. Talk with your doctor about any concerns you might have and they can help decide what is best for you.

Improve Your Productivity With Healthy Living

Living a healthy lifestyle will not only make us feel better physically and mentally, but it can also greatly improve our productivity at home and work as well. Many people think they lack the time (or money) that it takes to lead a healthy lifestyle, but the fact is that it is far easier than one might think. Making small, simple changes that lead to a healthy lifestyle is as easy as taking a look at what we put in our bodies and how we treat ourselves on a day-to-day basis.

Eating properly is essential to providing our bodies with the proper fuel that is needed to get us through each day. Fueling our bodies with excess sugars and highly-processed foods increases the production of insulin in our systems, which eventually affects the sugar in our blood. This up and down in our blood sugar levels drain our energy and keep us from focusing on the tasks at hand.

Eating whole grains and complete proteins will level out the blood sugar and will also help decrease food cravings throughout the day. Our bodies are much better able to use the fuel supplied when the sources include lean proteins, whole grains, fruits, and vegetables. The result is sustained energy and proper nutrition. Highly-processed foods do not provide the vitamins and minerals our bodies need, and may actually harm us with additives such as Trans fats and preservatives.

Even if we practice proper eating habits, we may not always get the nutrition we need. If our diets are lacking nutrition due to a hectic lifestyle, supplementing with vitamins, minerals, and/or herbs can help. Deficiencies in many vitamins and minerals can cause problems with digestion, eyesight, and even sleeping patterns. Keeping the proper level of nutrients in our blood gives our bodies the added fuel when our diets fail to provide it. A good multi-vitamin will include most of what is needed, but choose a chewable brand for maximum absorption.

Another important factor in healthy living is staying hydrated. Providing hydration for our bodies is crucial to keeping our systems working optimally. Our bodies are composed mostly of water, and require about two liters of water per day, not only to maintain the proper water level, but to also flush out the impurities that are created through the body’s daily processes. Proper hydration is necessary in sustaining our energy, and also aids in properly burning the fuel we have taken in by way of food.

To burn the extra fuel we taken in, we must exercise and burn calories. Without exercise, our bodies will only burn so many calories daily. Any excess fuel will turn into those ugly fat deposits so many of us wish we didn’t have. It is now suggested that to lead a healthy lifestyle, one must incorporate a half hour of exercise each day. This can be fulfilled by simply taking a pleasurable one-mile walk during lunch or after work. Speed and distance aren’t usually as important as keeping your body active on a daily basis. This alone should give you the pep and vitality needed to be more productive at home or work.

Finally, we should always listen to what our bodies are telling us when we are sick or feel “out of sorts.” This is the body’s way of telling us to recognize that we aren’t leading as healthy a lifestyle as we should. If we make some of the simple changes mentioned above, we will go a long way putting our mind and bodies back in shape.