Cardiovascular disease (conditions that affect the heart and blood vessels) is the number one killer for both men and women in the U.S. Ramos, cardiologist at the Montefiore Einstein Center for Heart and Vascular Care at Montefiore Medical Center in the Bronx. “Coronary artery disease is the most common type of heart disease and an estimated three-quarters of a million Americans will suffer a life threatening heart attack every year.”
Learn Which Foods That Can "Break" Your Heart
Despite these sobering statistics, there is some good news. “In the past few years we have found ways to reduce primary and secondary cardiovascular events,” explains Dr. Ramos. “These include medical therapy with blood lowering medications and statins to control cholesterol levels.”
Ultimately, the best way to prevent heart disease is by following a heart-healthy diet and improving key lifestyle habits such as exercise and sleep quality. “Sitting for prolonged periods during the day, especially at work, is now recognized as an important risk factor for developing heart disease,” says Dr. Robert Glatter, attending physician in the Department of Emergency Medicine at Lenox Hill Hospital in Manhattan. “Even if you exercise for 30 minutes a day aerobically, it's still important to get up out of your chair and walk around periodically throughout a workday. Standing or treadmill desks, and the use of a stability ball to sit upon which engages your core can help offset the negative consequences of prolonged sitting.” Dr. Glatter recommends a goal of “at least 30-40 minutes of moderate to vigorous exercise three-four times per week.”
Getting adequate amounts sleep is also vital for heart-health, “since this can lead to increased calories and subsequent weight gain,” says Glatter.
Another way to reduce your risk for cardiovascular issues is to make simple but effective dietary changes. “The American Heart Association has published guidelines on an optimal heart healthy diet,” says Ramos. “The focus should be on whole food (fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy products, poultry, fish, and nuts) and intake patterns rather than previous emphasis on specific nutrients such as percentage of saturated fat or cholesterol intake.”
Ramos specifically recommends following the DASH diet (as per below) as it has “been shown to not only control hypertension but it has been found to promote heart health.”
Controlling portion size is also imperative. “How much you eat is just as important as what you eat,” says Dr. Glatter. “It's important to know the proper number of calories to take in to maintain your weight. That said, it's critical to have a matching amount and intensity of exercise and physical activity to balance your caloric intake.”
“In essence, it comes down to setting good practices and patterns of eating which ultimately can lead to long-term benefits to your heart and health,” says Dr. Glatter.
So, if you want to keep your ticker ticking follow the expert advice above and check out our guide to the foods you should be avoiding.
“Canned soups are popular especially in the winter months, because they are warm, hearty, and generally inexpensive. However, they are bad for the heart because they contain excessive amounts of sodium (salt). Excess sodium is unhealthy for the heart because it causes the body to retain water, consequently putting a burden on the blood vessels and heart, leading to high blood pressure and ultimately the possible development of heart disease. According to The American Heart Association, the daily-recommended sodium intake is 1,500 milligrams – or ¾ of a teaspoon per day. Canned soups do come in low-sodium varieties and are labeled accordingly. A canned soup that contains less than 140 milligrams per serving is considered low-sodium food. A low- sodium alternative to canned soups is to make your own broth-based soup with vegetables and lean proteins such as beans and chicken. This kind of soup will be high in fiber and protein and low in salt.”
Tanya Zuckerbrot, registered dietician and creator of the F-Factor Diet.
“Americans may love this dessert, but one piece (one Nutrition Labeling and Education Act serving) contains over 400 calories, 28 grams of fat (43 percent daily value), 12 grams of saturated fat (60 percent daily value), 69 milligrams of cholesterol (23 percent daily value), 548 milligrams of sodium (22 percent daily value), and 27 grams of sugar. All these numbers may seem confusing but all you need to really know is that 20 percent or more of daily value is considered high. Cheesecake is high in all of the above and dangerously high in terms of fat and saturated fat. Eating foods that contain saturated fats raises the level of cholesterol in your blood. High levels of LDL cholesterol in your blood increase your risk of heart disease and stroke.
Deborah Orlick Levy, registered dietician and Carrington Farms Health and Nutrition Consultant
Best Breakfast Foods for Gut Health
Add these seven foods to your breakfast rotation to keep your good bacteria happy.
Your "gut" refers to your small and large intestine, which are lined with millions of bacteria collectively known as the microbiome. Your microbiome isn&apost static but rather ever-changing, and the type of bacteria in your gut can be changed by what you eat𠅏or better or worse. Emerging research shows associations between different types of gut bacteria and certain chronic diseases, including type 2 diabetes, obesity and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).
But the good news is that you have some control over the type of bacteria in your gut, depending on what you eat. Studies show that changing your diet from mostly animal-based to plant-based can change the type of bacteria in your gut in as little as 24 hours. And when you switch back to an animal-based diet, your bacteria switches back too (and vice versa: similar rapid shifts can occur if you are starting with a plant-based diet and switch to eating more animal foods). And here&aposs the kicker: eating a plant-based diet is associated with having a healthier biome.
But we&aposre not saying you have to give up all animal products for a healthy gut. So what should you eat in the morning for a healthy gut? Focus on fiber, prebiotics and probiotics. We compiled a list of seven breakfast foods that have these good-for-your-gut nutrients, plus we explain how they work.
Sugary Drinks Could Break Your Heart
THURSDAY, Nov. 2, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- If you're a fan of sodas, fruit juices and sugary sports drinks, you're probably not doing your heart any favors.
A new review suggests that regularly quenching your thirst with sugar-sweetened beverages not only contributes to your risk of gaining weight, it also ups your chances of developing type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome, a cluster of conditions that raises your risk of heart disease.
"Some studies found that consuming as few as two servings of sugar-sweetened beverages a week was linked to [an increased risk of metabolic syndrome, diabetes and heart disease and stroke]," said study senior author Faadiel Essop, a professor at Stellenbosch University in South Africa.
"Others found that drinking at least one sugar-sweetened beverage per day was associated with elevated blood pressure," he said, and added that even more alarmingly, some studies found that sugary drinks could raise blood pressure in teenagers.
Metabolic syndrome occurs when you have three or more of the following risk factors for heart disease: abdominal obesity, high levels of triglycerides (a type of blood fat), reduced levels of HDL (the good) cholesterol, elevated blood sugar, and higher than normal fasting blood sugar levels (but not yet high enough to be considered diabetes), according to the American Heart Association.
The review included 36 studies that looked at the effects of sugary drinks on heart and metabolic health. The studies were done within the past 10 years.
The studies had varied findings, according to the researchers. But most suggested an association between drinks containing sugar and the development of metabolic syndrome. The majority of the studies also looked at people who had more than five sugary drinks a week.
It's not clear exactly how these drinks increase the odds of metabolic syndrome, Essop said. But certainly excess consumption of sugary drinks is linked to a higher waist circumference -- a factor in metabolic syndrome -- and weight gain. Such drinks have also been tied to decreased insulin sensitivity (a risk for diabetes), inflammation, abnormal cholesterol and high blood pressure, he said.
"Those consuming sugary drinks do not feel as full as those who ate solid foods, even though they had the same amount of calories," Essop noted, and that lack of satiety may then cause people to eat or drink more.
Dr. Joel Zonszein, director of the clinical diabetes center at Montefiore Medical Center in New York City, said that fruit offers a good example.
"If you eat an apple, you get full much easier. In addition to sugar, an apple has a lot of fiber and the satiety is much better. But when you have a glass of apple juice, you're getting the sugar from three to four apples and no fiber. That's a much more concentrated dose of sugar that will spike the blood sugar level," he explained.
Dr. William Cefalu, chief scientific, medical and mission officer from the American Diabetes Association, said the studies included in this review were observational studies, which are a good starting point when looking at medical problems, but they cannot prove a cause-and-effect relationship.
"What we can be sure of, however, is that sugar-sweetened beverages provide a substantial amount of excess calories with no nutritional benefit, and excess calories beyond what is normally needed by the body to maintain normal activities, in turn, does lead to weight gain," Cefalu said. And excess weight is a significant risk factor for type 2 diabetes, as well as many heart disease risk factors.
"At the end of the day, drinking water is the best form of hydration for all people -- with or without diabetes," he said.
One important exception, Cefalu noted, is anyone with diabetes -- particularly those treated with insulin -- whose blood sugar is low. In that case, it's crucial to quickly raise blood sugar levels to prevent serious complications. A sugar-sweetened beverage such as juice or soda can do that quite well.
The study was published Nov. 2 in the Journal of the Endocrine Society.
A Power-Packed 475-Calorie Breakfast
- 1 large egg (70 calories, 0 g carbs, 5 g fat, 6 g protein)
- 1 cup liquid egg whites (120 calories, 0 g carbs, 0 g fat, 28 g protein)
- 1 tbsp natural peanut butter (90 calories, 3 g carbs, 7 g fat, 4 g protein)
- 1 packet regular oatmeal 1/3 cup dry (120 calories, 20 g carbs, 2 g fat, 4 g protein)
- 90 g blueberries (50 calories, 13 g carbs, 0 g fat, 0 g protein)
- 1 cup black coffee (25 calories)
The calorie breakdown of this breakfast is:
Now, you might look at that and say, “Hey! I can’t eat all that for breakfast!” Well, that’s even better! Have half for breakfast and the other half for a late-morning snack if you’re feeling peckish! You’re getting far more from your calories with this option and it will likely lead to way less consumption during the day!
Join Our Brain Warrior Tribe!
My husband often says, “What’s good for your heart, is good for your brain.” At the Amen Clinics we treat the whole person.
Heart disease claims the lives of one in three Americans. Yet almost all heart attacks and strokes are potentially preventable. Along with regular exercise and maintaining a healthy weight, what you eat can play a surprisingly big role in protecting your heart health.
Here are five delicious foods that fight cardiovascular disease—and the chronic inflammation that often drives it.
- Colorful fruits and vegetables.A study of more than 313,000 people found that for each serving of fruits and vegetables consumed daily, the risk of fatal cardiovascular events fell by four percent. During the eight-year study, those who ate at least eight servings of about 3 ounces apiece had a 25 percent lower of dying from a heart attack or stroke, compared to people who ate less than three servings a day.
- Nibble dark chocolate. Your heart—and taste buds—will rejoice when you indulge in this delicious superfood. People who eat the most dark chocolate have a 37 percent lower risk for heart disease and 29 percent drop in stroke danger, compared to those who ate the least, according to a review of studies involving about 114,000 volunteers. However, those with the highest chocolate consumption only averaged 7.5 grams (about one-fourth of an ounce) daily. A square or two daily is all you need for heart health.
- Nuts. Go nuts about this news: An analysis of more than 40 studies found eating nuts lower both total and LDL (bad) cholesterol. Four of the studies also found that risk for dying from heart disease dropped by 8.3 percent for each weekly serving of nuts the participants ate. The tasty little nuggets have a unique fatty acid profile, along with such heart-protective substances as fiber, folic acid, magnesium, copper, and phytosterols.
- Fatty fish. Rich in omega-3 fatty acids, oily fish, such as salmon, tuna, and halibut, combat inflammation and plaque buildup in the arteries. An analysis of 20 studies reports that eating one to two 3-ounce servings a week cuts the threat of fatal heart disease by 36 percent. Eating fatty fish frequently also helps lower blood pressure, triglycerides (blood fats) and inflammatory markers linked to heart attack risk. For the best defense, buy wild-caught fish.
- Extra virgin olive oil. Scientists have discovered the antioxidant in olive oil that offers the most protection against heart attack and stroke: DHPEA-EDA. Portuguese researchers report that it helps prevent oxidative damage linked to plaque buildup. The study offers a compelling reason to reach for virgin olive oil, which has more of this heart-protective antioxidant, compared to other oils. Another study found that people who use extra virgin olive oil frequently for cooking or as a salad dressing are 41 percent less likely to suffer a stroke than those who use it rarely.
Extra high-potency omega-3 fish oil supplement, screened for 250 possible contaminants and absolutely essential for your brain and body. Get 21% OFF with coupon code TANA21 at checkout. The Vital Role of Your Heart, Blood Vessels, and Fat to Your Brain Health with Dr. Mark Houston … Listen now on The Brain Warrior’s Way Podcast.
10 Quick and Easy Fitness Foods
Food is fuel, and what you reach for before and after exercise can make or break your workout success. Power up and maximize performance with these 10 fitness foods.
Healthy fats and protein provide sustained energy and protein to boost muscle performance. Add PB to a post-workout smoothie, or make a batch of energy bars to tuck in your gym bag.
Photo by: Stephen Johnson ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All rights Reserved
Stephen Johnson, 2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All rights Reserved
Not only does oatmeal make a delicious breakfast, but the soluble fiber promotes heart health and controls dips in blood sugar. A small bowl with fresh fruit makes a terrific pre-workout meal.
Stock Photo of Greek Yogurt on White
Photo by: Matt Armendariz ©Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved
Matt Armendariz, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved
The strained Greek-style yogurt contains more protein and less lactose than unstrained yogurt, making it a tasty choice for exercise enthusiasts. Top with granola for a healthy snack or as part of a meal.
Bobby Flay's Coconut Water Smoothie with Mango, Banana, and Strawberries
Photo by: Matt Armendariz ©Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved
Matt Armendariz, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved
Potassium-rich banana are the ideal fruit to help tired and worn-out muscles. Freeze ahead for extra-creamy smoothies.
Chocolate milk is the delicious drink on white background
There’s continually mounting evidence to support the idea that the balance of carbs and protein found in chocolate milk is ideal for post-workout recovery. For folks who cannot digest dairy, chocolate soy milk would be the best comparable dairy-free option.
Baked Eggs in Hash Brown Cups, as seen on Food Network's The Pioneer Woman.
©2013,Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved
2013,Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved
Eggs provide protein, Omega-3 fats, vitamin B12 and even some vitamin D! Eat both the yolks and the whites to reap all the healthy benefits. Egg sandwiches make a wonderful grab-and-go post-exercise breakfast, and eggs can be combined with potatoes for a healthy and satisfying weekend meal.
Photo by: Matt Armendariz ©2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved
Matt Armendariz, 2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved
One ounce of nuts provides 150 to 200 calories of good-for-you fuel — choose the highest-protein options, like pistachios and almonds, for after exercise.
FN Kitchens Juicy Grilled Cheeseburgers
FN Kitchens Juicy Grilled Cheeseburgers
©2012, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.
2012, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.
Animal proteins like meat, fish, eggs and dairy products provide all the important building blocks that muscles need to stay lean and strong. Choose low-fat options like chicken and turkey breast and lean cuts of beef.
Pumpkin Seed Dried Cherry Trail Mix Claire Robinson
Seeds are another superfood option, providing protein, minerals and inflammation-fighting Omega-3 fats that help protect cells from damage. Flax, pumpkin, chia and sunflower seeds are just a few of the irresistible options.
Homemade Smoked Salmon Appetizer
Many types of fish could qualify as fitness foods, but salmon certainly tops the list — it’s sustainable, low in mercury, easy to prepare, and packed with nutrients to promote healthy muscles and a strong cardiovascular system. Salmon is also one of the best sources of Omega-3 fats you can find. Enjoy smoked salmon as part of breakfast or brunch, or make a healthy and satisfying salmon burger for dinner.
Dana Angelo White, MS, RD, ATC, is a registered dietitian, certified athletic trainer and owner of Dana White Nutrition, Inc., which specializes in culinary and sports nutrition.
The 12 Dirtiest Foods In The Produce Aisle Will Break Your Heart
The No. 2 spot might make you second-guess your that salad you had for lunch.
Every year since 2004, the Environmental Working Group (EWG) publishes a "Dirty Dozen" list that ranks the most popular fruits and vegetables based on their pesticide residue levels. By analyzing pesticide residue data from more than 36,000 samples tested by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and Food and Drug Administration (FDA), this year EWG found a total of 178 different pesticides on fresh produce samples tested&ndashresidues that remain even after items are washed and, in some cases, peeled. Here's the quick and dirty on which fruits and veggies you might want to be wary of at the grocery store.
For the second year in a row, strawberries have been named the top carrier of pesticides in produce. In EWG's findings, 99 percent of the strawberries tested by federal officials contained detectable pesticide residues. Of those strawberry samples, 29 percent included residues of 10 or more pesticides while some contained as many as 21 different pesticides.
This popular leafy green shot up the list from #8 in 2016 to the runner-up spot. Three-fourths of samples tested were contaminated with a neurotoxic bug killer that's banned from use on food crops in Europe. With an average of 7 pesticides found on every conventionally grown spinach sample collected in 2015, you'd be wise to thoroughly rinse the leaves before chowing down.
Last year, more than 98 percent of nectarines tested positive for multiple pesticide residues and the stone fruit held it's spot in 2017. Since Americans eat nearly 8 pounds of the fruit each year, according to EWG, this is a special concern for the organization.
According to the report, "pesticides are created expressly to kill living organisms -- insects, plants and fungi that are considered "pests." Many pesticides pose health dangers to people. These risks have been confirmed by independent scientists and physicians across the world. "
The USDA summarized its own testing from 2014 and concluded that "overall pesticide residues found in foods are at levels below the tolerances set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency." But keeping pesticides at a legal level may not be enough for some customers, which is why EWG stresses buying organic produce.
According to tests by the USDA, the amount of pesticide residues on pears has more than doubled since 2010, with more than 50% of pears tested showing residues of 5 or more pesticides, and some had a whopping 20, including fugicides.
"Fruits and vegetables are important for your health," Sonya Lunder, EWG Senior Analys t, said in a release . "But for those on the Dirty Dozen, we recommend buying the organic versions if you want to avoid pesticides on your food."
"Even low levels of pesticide exposure can be harmful to infants, babies and young children, so when possible, parents and caregivers should take steps to lower children's exposures to pesticides while still feeding them diets rich in healthy fruits and vegetables," said Dr. Philip Landrigan of the Mt. Sinai School of Medicine.
Opt for veggies on the list of produce least likely to contain pesticide residues, such as sweet corn, avocados, cabbage, onions, and frozen sweet peas .
Though cherry tomatoes dropped down to #14 on this year's list, the full-grown variety still remain in the top 10. A release from EWG warns that "the pesticide industry and chemical agriculture maintain that pesticides on produce are nothing to worry about, but doctors and scientists strongly disagree. "
So should we stop eating these produce varieties completely? Many researchers say no. "Our typical exposure is often 100,000 times lower than levels that show no effect in lab animals who have been fed the chemicals on a daily basis throughout their lifetime," Carl Winter, director of the FoodSafe Program at the University of California, Davis told Bloomberg.
Potatoes displaced cucumbers from the top 12 in this year's list. For more information and a full list of the 51 worst culprits, visit the Environmental Working Group website.
The Food Cupid
Call it Aphrodisiac or Foods of desire, Foods for indulgence, Foods for virility, Foods for Longevity …But The Big Fat Truth is There NO truth in it. It’s all in our head, it’s a mind game….. Sorry to break your heart this Valentines.
Our dear old friend Google says — An Aphrodisiac is a substance that increases sexual desire and the word itself comes from some Greek goddess of love and sexuality…..But hang on, if there was really any truth in aphrodisiac foods then the world would have been munching on asparagus stalks or better popping raw garlic pods to increase their love appetite.The list is endless from almonds to avocado, from chocolates to carrots, from bananas to wines, from rhino’s horn to tiger’s parts. But my belief is that this is not true. Good ingredients are there to cook a great meal. It something to be enjoyed rather than taken as a medium to achieve anything but a great gastronomic experience. All the foods that are nice ‘n’ warm and excites the taste buds of a lot of people across the world are special.
Valentines and love is all about falling. But don’t fall for the trap this season, where highly priced restaurant menus feature aphrodisiac menus with a promise to excite you. “Kutch Nahi Hone Wala” it is all a mind game to make you believe. But hey am not the devil here, I am the Food Cupid…So here’s what you really need to take care about when you move out with someone special to explore you romantic side.
Eat Right – It is likely that restaurants might woo you with a nice 8 course meals….but wait, you don’t want to be stuffy and burpy on Valentines. Eat moderately.
No Burps Please – Avoid that fizzy drink cause that sure will make you burp and trust me you don’t want that to happen. A nice warm red wine or a rose wine always stirs up the best of emotions. Whiskies and colas a complete no no. if you don’t prefer alcohol then go straight for a nice tropical fruit punch.
Light bite set it right – stay away from fried and heavy food. Remember the mantra “Lighter you eat more active you remain. i.e. if you can read between the lines…
Nobody enjoys a stinky kiss—Garlic is my favorite ingredient. Add to almost anything and I will eat it, but not today…..Avoid any strong smelling food whose taste will linger on for a long time.
Flavours First – Experiment with exciting, soothing, tantalizing and woody flavours like the Vanilla, Citrus, Mushrooms.Be daring only in the bed – Seafood can make your belly loose. Try only if you are sure of the freshness. A lot of restaurants keep seafood to justify the price rise for the special menu.
Clear the Smoke – Avoid sizzlers … If you are fond of them hold on to it for another day. Though sizzlers are good on taste but all the smoke coming from burnt butter and the iron plate get collected on your clothes, skin and hair. Well if you order then you just wasted your best cologne and she just wasted her expensive hair spa.
Have Clarity – Don’t just eat anything in the name of Aphrodisiac. Have your preferences clear and best if to speak to the chef a day before to get a customized menu. What’s the use of gulping a raw oyster in the name of love when you can’t stand its taste.
Know your allergens – Know what foods you and your partner are allergic to. Chefs are your best friends to find out what went in the recipe.
Know when to stop – If you feel full then stop. Remember Valentine’s Day is about getting together and having that special talk, don’t let food take away the focus from it.
And remember to carry Red Roses and Chocolates for your loved one….They say it’s Aphrodisiac
Ways to Prepare Raw Food Recipes & No-Cook Meals
Raw food doesn’t have to mean straight out of the ground. While a bowl of grapes or crudite platter can be a perfectly wonderful raw dish, there are many techniques available to the raw chef to create complex and delicious dishes beyond chopping and plating. Some grains can be soaked in water to render them palatable even without cooking. One well-known example is overnight oats, and another is soaked bulgur wheat in a raw tabbouleh salad.
You can also sprout grains, seeds, and some beans. (For our article about sprouts and how to grow them, click here.) Once sprouted, you can then blend or pulverize the grains, seeds, or beans in a blender or food processor to make dips, pates, and spreads. If you love hummus, you can sprout chickpeas for two to three days and then process the still-crunchy-but-they-won’t-break-your-teeth beans with raw garlic, lemon juice, some salt (if you aren’t going low-sodium), and tahini.
You can make raw foods more palatable by marinating or fermenting them too. The longer they soak, the more flavor they’ll absorb. Fermentation actually changes the chemical structure of the food, making it more digestible.
Two more techniques that raw chefs love are spiralizing and dehydrating. Spiralizing is the process of turning veggies and roots into long strands that mimic pasta. Zucchini, sweet potatoes (which, unlike regular potatoes, are okay to eat raw), carrots, and beets are popular choices. And dehydrating, usually with the aid of a dedicated dehydrator, or set in the oven for a long time at the lowest setting, can turn soaked and blended nuts, seeds, and beans into chewy “breads” and crunchy crackers.
Some common raw meals include the following:
- Sandwiches & wraps (If you want the dish to be 100% raw, you can use leafy greens, raw nori, or raw coconut or jicama wraps instead of baked tortillas)
- Zoodles and other spiralized veggie dishes
- Lettuce cups or tacos
- Raw dips
- Chilled soups
- Overnight oats or chia seed pudding
Raw Food Kitchen Tools
There are several kitchen appliances that can help you attain great culinary heights even without the application of heat.
The spiralizer I like is actually quite inexpensive, costing less than $30. And the manufacturer shares mouthwatering photos of mounds of spiralized green cabbage, sweet potato, carrot, zucchini, and red onion.
Pretty much any blender will work for cooked food, but raw foods are often tougher to get creamy and smooth. Here’s a relatively inexpensive blender that can handle most raw tasks. For serious raw work, check out a machine in the Vitamix line.
Here are a couple of popular food processors: the inexpensive KitchenAid (a smaller 5-cup model), and the more expensive Ninja Professional Plus Kitchen System, which is a blender and food processor all-in-one.
You can also make your own raw, dairy-free nut milks using a dedicated nut milk maker. Or you can do the DIY route using mesh bags or cheesecloth. If you are currently buying lots of commercial plant milks, even the pricey Almond Cow machine will pay for itself in a few months.
Finally, if you want to include raw chewiness and crunchiness in your diet, or if you just like to preserve fruit or make flax crackers, here’s a great dehydrator with nine racks and stainless steel shelves.
How To Create a Healthy Clean Eating Menu
'Clean eating', or a clean eating diet, is a phrase/concept you have probably seen increasingly being used over the last few years. This has been coined as an expression that refers to a wholesome way of eating focused on organic foods meaning, a lifestyle based on eating natural foods like whole-grains, fruits and veggies, lean proteins, and heart healthy fats like avocados, nuts and seeds, and plant based oils.
Clean eating refers to the consumption of minimally processed foods, ethically raised, and rich in nutrients.
Since 'clean' is an arbitrary term, it does not mean foods that do not meet the criteria described above are 'dirty' or harmful to eat. Limiting certain foods that may not provide sound nutrition, and substituting these with nutrient dense foods for the bulk of your eating habits is what this lifestyle promotes.
It is possible to be too restrictive when it comes to your food choices and there’s no strong research showing that the occasional processed food is going to make or break your health.
With this in mind, when planning a clean menu, think of the following:
1. Healthy or 'clean' food doesn't mean bland and boring food
Adding healthy sauces and seasonings to your meal prep and recipes will help you add a variety factor, and also a very unique identity factor to every meal.
Don't skip the salt and pepper these two are essential to brighten the natural flavor of food. If you have a variety and combination of spices you like to use, stick to it. If it works for you, then implement it without shame.
2. Think protein, carbs, and fats for every meal
In the sports performance world (sports nutrition), dietitians have coined a well balanced plate, as a performance plate. By 'well balanced plate', I mean a dish that has all the major macronutrients present.
Granted, this will vary according to the person's size, weight, and health goals. But thinking that in each meal you have a protein, a starchy carb and vegetables, along with a fat source, will help you stay satiated and hit all your nutrient goals.
3. Always include a variety of vegetables on your meals
Increasing your vegetable consumption is a secured way to help your body get the nutrient it needs to perform optimally throughout the day.
Identifying specific vegetables that you like, roasting them with salt and pepper, and rotating them through your meals will support your clean eating habits.
4. Pick a variety of items to rotate through your week.
5. Stick to the 80/20 rule
Meaning, eat clean 80% of the time and allow yourself a break 20% of the time.
To bring that example to life, think that in any given week you may eat 21 meals. Out of those 21 meals, 16 fall on that clean 80%, giving you the ability to not be so strict on the remaining 5 meals.
Store-bought granola is not all that great for you. Try making a big batch yourself and save on the fat, sugar, and cost.
1 cup wheat germ
2 cups oat bran
3 cups oats
1 cup wheat or rye flakes
1½ cup sliced, almonds
¾ cup chopped walnuts (optional)
½ cup sesame seeds
¼ cup maple syrup
¼ cup honey
½ cup oil (1/3 cup if you desire less fat)
Mix dry ingredients. Heat the maple syrup, honey, and oil in a saucepan or microwave until bubbly. Stir into the dry ingredients, mixing well. Pour into a shallow pan (9" x 12" cake pan) and bake for 15 minutes in a 350° oven. Remove and stir. Bake for 10 minutes, then remove and stir. Bake for 10 more minutes until light brown. Let cool. Granola will become crunchy as it cools.