Hello Friends and welcome back from the weekend!
Did you get outside and enjoy the beautiful weather on the first Spring weekend of the year? How about the grill, did you clear away the spider webs and fire it up? If so, were there any not-so-good-for-you foods on there. Knowing you probably not, besides not all grilled foods are bad for you just as not all cholesterol is bad for you.
There are two types of cholesterol, LDL and HDL. LDL or low-density lipoprotein is bad because it can build up on the walls of your arteries and clog them. However, HDL or high-density lipoprotein travels away from your arteries to your liver and is flushed out of your body.
Keeping your LDL low and your HDL levels high gives you a much better chance of avoiding heart disease and incorporating some of these foods into your diet can help.
- Almonds – loaded with monounsaturated fat which lowers your cholesterol
- Chestnuts – roasted and they too have very little fat and helps to keep your arteries clear
- Artichokes – boosts bile production which breaks down cholesterol from the fat you eat
- Apples – full of pectin, which is a natural ingredient that can lower cholesterol up to 30% if eaten daily
- Whole grains – barley and other soluble fibrous foods slows down digestion giving your body more time to whisk away cholesterol
- Black Beans – instead of eating fatty meats, have a meatless dinner and reduce your cholesterol levels, try navy and kidney beans as well
- Peaches – prevents gallstones which are solid masses of cholesterol
- Flaxseed – these seeds from the flax plants have tons of soluble fiber, the miracle fiber that helps protect against high cholesterol.
- Wheat Germ – sprinkle onto your cereal or yogurt to lower total cholesterol
- Ginger – this spice contains phytochemicals an antioxidant that fights atherosclerosis which is hardening of the arteries
- Garlic – cuts down on fat buildup in your ateries by lowering LDL cholesterol
- Grape Juice – drinking 2 glasses a day is a natural way to rejuvenate your veins and arteries
- Mushrooms – this fungus contain a good source of chromium, a mineral that acts as an antioxidant.
- Honey – good source of dietary antioxidants that are good in lowering LDL cholesterol
- CHOCOLATE – contains a generous helping of polyphenols that are antioxidants. Polyphenols which are also found in RED WINE can help your heart by keeping LDL cholesterol from becoming oxidized, which can hurt your arteries.
- Tomato Sauce – lycopene in tomatoes keeps your arteries flowing free by breaking down cholesterol.
- Oatmeal – oatmeal does more than stick to your ribs, it’s also a sticky soluble fiber that helps to slow the movement of food through your intestines. This gives HDL particles more time to pick up cholesterol to take to your liver for disposal.
- Fish – fatty fish like tuna, mackerel and salmon are rich in omega-3 fatty acids that can protect your arteries from damage.
- Yogurt – fermented milk in yogurt clears arteries and keeps your heart healthy.
Heart healthy salmon and black beans
I try to cook and eat healthy, so on Friday night we had baked salmon with mango salsa and black beans for dinner. Our youngest doesn’t like fatty fish so he ate the baked clams. The heart works non-stop to pump blood throughout our bodies which is why we need to keep it healthy.
Food alone won’t prevent heart disease, so besides eating right, you need to exercise, quit smoking, limit alcohol consumption, keep your weight in check and most importantly RELAX!
Stay Blessed – No Stress in 2014!
Hello Friends and Happy Monday
I trust you all had a wonderful weekend with an opportunity to get out and enjoy the warmer winter temps. If you did any yard work or other activities that your body wasn’t ready for, you may need to eat a few of these Super Foods to soothe those aching joints.
After the age of 50, four out of five adults are affected by some sort of osteoarthritis (OA) due to the wear and tear on the soft tissues in the joints. Doctors don’t have many medical cures for arthritis, but they can prescribe anti-inflammatory drugs, painkillers as well as exercise and weight loss. However, good nutrition is essential and probably your best bet to soothe the soreness of swollen joints.
Super Foods for Joint Soothers
Apricots – colorful fruits provide antioxidants and are potassium rich
Dates – Sweet treat also rich in potassium
Strawberries – Vitamin C to make collagen, key building block for cartilage in joints
Papaya – Beta Cryptoxanthin, powerful antioxidant that can save your knees
Almonds – try dry-roasted or plain almonds
Apples – “eat an apple a day” still holds true
Olive Oil – healthy monounsaturated fat contains oleocanthal that works the same as ibuprofen
Cherries – folk remedy for gout is now scientifically proven they have pain-prevention powers
Water – helps to dilute and flush uric acid from the body, lubricates and cushions the joints
Coffee – Same as water in flushing uric acid from the body, which causes gout
Fish – protein and unsaturated fat are critical parts of a diet to rid body of gout
Garlic – high in selenium and other antioxidants
Tea – skip the bottled version, drink Green, Black or Oolong tea for their pain fighting powers
Beef – contains a polyunsaturated fatty acid called conjugated linoleic – “fat that fights fat” and cuts down on pain in the joints
Canned Salmon – Rich in Vitamin D which as we get older our bodies loses it’s ability to convert sunlight into Vitamin D. Keep a can in your pantry during those cloudy days and short winter days.
Pomegranate Juice – the extracts from this fruit can upset the development of osteoarthritis
Wheat Germ – Vitamin E with powerful antioxidant that ease joint inflammation
Indian Dish like curry – curcumin reduce inflammation, an active ingredient in turmeric
The most common treatment for joint pain are anti-inflammatory drugs, including aspirin and ibuprofen, but you can can also reduce inflammation through your diet.
So save yourself a little money paying high prices for drugs and instead make meals that are packed with natural joint rebuilding nutrients. If you can, try eating more fatty fish, fruits and veggies, cook with olive oil and spices like turmeric and ginger to soothe the soreness in those achy joints.
Stay Blessed – No Stress in 2014!
Hello Friends and Happy Hump Day Wednesday
Oftentimes I find myself spending way too much money on junk food and snacks at the grocery stores. I wonder if subconsciously it’s because my grandmother didn’t buy a lot of snacks while we were growing up. It’s funny because in her later years she always wanted candy or something sweet to eat after dinner or while watching TV. I wonder if that also stemmed from her not having sweets as a child even though her father owned a candy store in Canton, North Carolina in the early 19oo’s.
McDonald’s Apple Pie and Peanuts Candy were her favorites.
My grandmother thought snacks should be fresh or dried fruit, stalks of celery and carrot sticks that was always in a large cup of ice water on the top shelf of the refrigerator. On rare occasions there would be a jar of Pimento Spread to dip the celery sticks in.
Although, she may not have bought us a lot of junk food, candy or sweets, that didn’t mean that we didn’t find a way to get some!
My sister Gloria and I would save our coins and when we had enough money we’d run up the hill and straight to the corner store for some of these unhealthy treats:
I am now the same age that my grandmother was when she began raising us, and I finally appreciate a good piece of dried fruit or fiber stick! It’s funny how some things that we are taught in our youth doesn’t make sense until we actually experience it later in life.
When shopping I also make sure to purchase fresh fruit including apples, bananas, and oranges as well as cheese and crackers but those Oreo Cookies and Ice Cream seem to get eaten first.
What were some of your favorite snacks growing up and what snack if any do you buy now?
FRI-YAY!!! I am so looking forward to the weekend because tomorrow is Middletown’s Annual Peach Festival. There are activities for children, a local artist exhibit, historical exhibits, a peach pie contest, crafts, music, food, games, and of course – peaches! The parade starts at 9:00 am but I don’t go just to see that or for “all things peaches”, but specifically for the fried fish sandwiches sold by Dale United Methodist Church!! Three large pieces of fried fish on soft white Wonder Bread soaked with hot sauce ….oh my…I’m drooling already. I know it’s not healthy but man oh man… it is just too good for words and I only indulge once a year.
In September, the month of my birth there is another annual event just as unhealthy, apple picking at Milburn Orchards in Elkton, MD. Apple picking isn’t unhealthy, but the warm, fresh-from-the-oven Apple Cider Donuts are, I won’t even begin to describe them! The boys and I along with my grandmother (God Rest Her Soul) would always start off the season by heading to Milburn Orchards to pick our own fresh apples from a variety of trees. The boys would smash the rotten ones on the ground (must be a boy thing) and jump up high to get the big juicy ones. Apple picking may start early because last Friday, I looked across the yard at my neighbor’s broken fence and saw a small tree laden with apples. I may not need to drive to Elkton, perhaps just a simple walk over to grab a few for my morning Smoothies will be enough. Broken Fences Make Good Neighbors – lol
I stopped at Save aLot to pick up a few items and was a bit disappointed that the lines were long and there weren’t any cashiers at the registers. It was overheard that they can’t afford to bring in cashiers so are using store managers to ring up purchases. Not sure if this is what they mean by “SAVE A LOT” – so sad!
- Gala Apples $1.69 /lb
- Bananas $ .49/lb
- Baking Soda $ .59/box
- Black Beans $ .65/can
- Frozen Broccoli $1.19/bag
- Frozen, Skinless Chicken Breasts $5.99
- Cucumbers $ .89/each
- Frsh Ground Turkey $2.49
- Punch mix packs $1.00/each
- Green Beans $ .55/can
- Honey Grahams $1.79/box
- Hvy Duty Foil $1.99/roll
- LF Vanilla Yogurt $1.99/32 oz
- Mini Carrots $1.00/pack
- Murray T-Bone Steaks $19.99
- Oatmeal $1.69
- Scallions $ .99/pack
- Banquet Meal $1.00/each
- Swt Condensed Milk $1.49
- Swt Peas $ .65/can