Archive | December, 2007

Almond Ricotta Crème

31 Dec

 Makes 1 serving Ingredients
1/2 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1 package sugar substitute
1 teaspoon toasted slivered almonds
Instructions
Mix the ricotta, almond extract, and sugar substitute in a dessert bowl. Serve chilled and sprinkled with toasted almonds.

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Omega 3 is good for you

31 Dec

Omega-3-enriched eggs offer yet another way to enjoy the benefit of these “good,” polyunsaturated fats. Omega-3-enriched eggs are produced by varying the diet of the laying hens to include more flaxseed, which is an excellent plant-based source of omega-3s. These are found in growing numbers at your local supermarket. Yes omega-3-enriched products are gaining in popularity, including not only eggs but also milk, butter, breads, and cereals. Despite this recent trend, the most effective source of omega-3s is fish oil, including cold-water fatty fish such as herring, salmon, and sardines. (Pregnant women should avoid species that contain high levels of mercury, such as tuna, mackerel, and swordfish.) That’s because the omega-3s derived from plant sources differ from those derived from fish oils – and offer fewer known benefits. (However, along with flaxseed, good plant-based sources include dark, leafy greens, walnuts, and canola oil.) Dietitians  recommend eating fish at least twice a week. The specific omega-3s found in fish and fish oil have been found to have many heart-health benefits, including anti-inflammatory and anticlotting properties, and the ability to lower triglycerides. These fatty acids may also reduce the risks and symptoms of other conditions, including diabetes, stroke, rheumatoid arthritis, asthma, some cancers, and more. In addition to eating the South Beach Diet way, taking a fish oil supplement is a great way to ensure that you’re getting the omega-3s you need. This is especially true if you are not eating fish twice a week, and if you have high triglycerides. Check with your doctor to see what’s right for you.

Foods that promote healthy blood pressure

31 Dec

According to dietitians, these foods help to promote health and to keep your blood pressure in check

Foods high in potassiumBananas, citrus fruit, dried apricots, fish (especially salmon, flounder, and tuna), green leafy vegetables, legumes, melons, potato skins, poultry, raisins, tomatoes, whole-grain cereals, yogurt

Foods high in calcium
 Blackstrap molasses, broccoli, canned sardines and salmon (with bones), dairy products (milk, cheese, and yogurt), kale, tofu

Foods high in fiber
Apples, barley, brown rice, corn, legumes, nuts, potatoes with skin, prunes, whole-grain cereal and bread, yams

Foods high in magnesium

Fish, green leafy vegetables, legumes, meat, nuts, poultry, whole grains

Hypertension is a serious condition if untreated

31 Dec

If you suffer from high blood pressure, here are some things you can resolve to do for yourself in 2008. It is not a difficult resolution and can spell the difference between life and death:

*       Take your blood pressure medication as prescribed. *       Try to maintain a healthy weight*       Increase your physical activity. Do at least 30 minutes of moderate aerobic activity, such as walking, on most days. You can split the session into three 10-minute segments during the day. *       Eat foods low in salt and sodium. *       Read nutrition labels to determine how much sodium is in packaged foods. *       Eat more fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, and choose low-fat dairy foods. *       Include foods rich in potassium and calcium in your diet. *       If you consume alcohol, do so moderately. *       If you smoke, quit. *       Reduce your stress. *       Tell your family and friends you have high blood pressure, especially the person who prepares the meals. Good luck and good health for 2008

Sodium or Salt

31 Dec

It is important to know the difference between sodium and salt:  Here it is”

When you hear the word most people think of table salt a seasoning found in most every kitchen. Table salt is made of sodium and chloride, both nutrients needed for good health. The term salt does not mean the same as sodium because salt is only 40 percent sodium

Calcium may be helpful in control of high blood pressure

21 Dec

There is some emerging evidence that suggests a low calcium intake may contribute to high blood pressure, but calcium’s exact role in hypertension is unknown. One theory holds that a lack of calcium in the diet predisposes your body to retain sodium, which raises blood pressure. For this reason, it may be especially important that salt-sensitive people with hypertension get enough calcium.

While there’s evidence that consuming plenty of calcium-rich foods and beverages may help prevent hypertension, efforts to control blood pressure with calcium supplements have had mixed results. Studies found supplements successfully reduced both systolic and diastolic pressures in pregnant hypertensive women. But clinical trials involving patients with essential hypertension have been largely disappointing. For most people, calcium supplement either made no difference or reduced blood pressure only slightly — by an average of 1–2 mm Hg in systolic readings. Although some people experienced dramatic reductions in blood pressure with the supplements, there seems to be no common denominator, such as race or sex, among those who achieved such gains.

  Scientists are saying they are not ready yet to tell me to consume more calcium in order to lower blood pressure because calcium on its own is good for the body because it builds strong bones.

Tomato soup

20 Dec

If you like tomato soup, try this take on the old classic.

Ingredients
1 small onion, chopped
1/4 cup sliced mushrooms
3 ounces diced chicken breast
1/4 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1/8 teaspoon sweet paprika
Dash allspice
1 cup home-made chicken broth
1 can (15 ounces) chickpeas – drain and wash
3 whole tomatoes, peeled

Instructions
1. Add the onion, mushrooms, ham, oil, garlic, paprika, and allspice to a large pot. Cook for 1 minute.
2. Add the chicken broth, chickpeas, and tomatoes. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes.
3. Puree the soup in a blender and serve.

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