Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Cherries Are In Season!



This refreshing spritzer is perfection in a glass and only takes ten minutes to put together!

Ingredients:
      1 cup of pitted,fresh or frozen but thawed cherries
      1/4 cup of fresh mint leaves,a few sprigs to garnish the glass or pitcher.
      8 teaspoons of sugar (or stevia)
      1/4 cup of lime juice
      3 cups of plain spritzer

Directions:
       Mash all the ingredients together(mint leaves,cherries,sugar)the back of a wooden spoon works just fine,divided among 4 glasses or a large pitcher.
       Stir in lime juice.
       Fill pitcher or glasses with ice and water
       Top off with plain or cherry flavored seltzer
       Garnish with mint sprigs  

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Why Eat More Leafy Greens?



Not many foods can compare to the high nutritional value that leafy greens have. Not only are leafy greens high in antioxidants and helps with fighting many diseases but they are also extremely affordable,delicious and easy to cook!

Here's a list of the benefits for some of common leafy greens!

KALE:
-Excellent source of vitamin A,C and K!
-High in Calcium (for a vegetable)
-Great source of Potassium

SWISS CHARD:
-13 different types of antioxidants can be found in swiss chard!
-Great source of vitamin E,potassium and magnesium
-Contains vitamin A,C and K

SPINACH:
-Helps to protect the digestive tract lining from damage,especially with damage due to inflammation!
-Contains Vitamin C

BEET GREENS:
-Contains Zinc,Folate and Vitamin B6!
-Promotes eye health because its high in Lutien!

Many people love the bitterness of leafy greens paired with rich meaty main dish but for the picky eaters there's a way to temper the bitterness,just add sweet golden raisins,roasted pine nuts or sesame seeds!
Also detaching some of the leaves from main stalk stem can help reduce the bitterness. The stalk stems can be tossed,used for a broth or cut up into bite size pieces and sauteed for 5mins before adding the rest of the greens into the pan!

                                         It's all about the 50 Shades of Green!!!
Some researchers have found that our ancestors used to eat up to six pounds of greens everyday...there's some food for thought!


Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Spring Clean Shrimp Scampi!


Spring time,warm weather and pairs well with light but filling meals! If you're a pasta fan this delicious recipe just might be your new favorite dish!

Skinny Shrimp Scampi with Zucchini Noodles: Prep time 20mins Cook time 10mins!

2 Tablespoons of olive oil
1 pound of jumbo shrimp shelled and deveined
1 Tablespoon of minced garlic
1/4 teaspoon of red pepper flakes (optional)
1/4 cup of white wine
2 Tablespoons of freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 medium zucchinis cut into noodles (many different types of zoodle makers on the market and some VERY cheap!)
Chopped parsley for garnish


1.Place large sautee pan over medium low heat,add olive oil in to heat. Add red pepper flakes and minced garlic,cook them for a minute,while constantly stirring.

2.Add shrimp to the pan and cook until done,occasionally stirring,so about 3 minutes. Sprinkle salt and pepper on top of shrimp. Transfer cooked shrimp to bowl but leave the juice in the pan.

3.Increase the heat to high medium and add the wine and lemon juice for about 2 minutes,add zucchini noodles,cook for another 2 minutes and return the shrimp to the pan to mix all ingredients together.

4. Garnish with parsley and serve immediately!

                                                                  ENJOY!!



Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Health Benefits of Olive Oil!


Many people are making the switch to olive oil when cooking and also when dressing up their salads because of the health benefits from Olive Oil! Here a just a few benefits from the little but might olive branch!

-Olive oil is the good kind of fat. It is a monounsaturated fat which is essential for our body. We tend to believe high in fat is unhealthy but actually a diet in highly saturated fat is what makes fat unhealthy! But of course all in moderation when in comes to anything in our daily intake.

-They help control cholesterol and insulin levels in the body.

-Researchers have found that extra virgin olive oil shows signs of improved cognitive function.Simple terms its great for our brain and improves memory!

-The same antioxidants that olive oil has that heals our internal cells may help protect our outer layer.

Side note: Some olive oil might not be 'extra virgin' as it is claimed to be in grocery stores,unfortunately america does not have strict laws regarding labeling certain foods. Your best bet when shopping for olive oil is to purchase from a company specializing in olive oil. 1 bottle can last up to a whole year,nutrient wise not necessarily serving wise! Another tip when buy authentic,extra virgin olive oil be sure the bottle is a dark green bottle,the nutrients and antioxidants can escape when exposed to the sun. Be sure to store the bottle away from direct sunlight as well!

Check out and talk to the olive oil vendor/expert at Fridays Farmers Market,10-2pm at Victoria Gardens in Rancho Cucamonga! 

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Tips How To Build A Positive Body Image!


We all experience bad body image days,it can sometimes really affect the our mood and also our social life! Here are just a few tips to help build a Positive body image and or help reduce the stress when those feelings are coming on.

1.) Realize that its what's on the inside that counts! As cliche as that may sound it is simple and true! And anyone in your life that chooses to judge you based on looks and not personality is not worth bothering with. In time when little victories are won,like self acceptance,the idea that ALL things can be solved will really ring true!

2.) Know that everyone experiences and feels negatively about their body image at one point or another! We tend to forget that we're ALL human and not perfect!!

3.) Do not compare yourself to anyone else! You are who you are and that great! Confidence goes a looong way!

4.)Smile! Smiling helps release chemicals in our body that increase cell reproduction,meaning it creates more energy throughout the day!

5.) Exercise! It not only helps us feel and become healthier,it also release happy endorphins which makes us feel good!

6.) Make a list! List all of the traits you love about yourself,non body related! There are so many reasons to love you and to love yourself!

7.)Talk to Someone! Being honest with a close friend and or family member about how you're feeling is a great way to release any negative emotions! Sometimes a good cry helps as well. Bottling up negative emotions can cause strain on our health and continue a vicious cycle of self hate.


                                                    Remember,Be Your Own Hero!!
                                       You're One Of A Kind,That's Amazing In Itself!!

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

How To Teach Kids to Read Food Labels...


Lets face it,reading food labels isn't the easiest habit to form which is why its best to teach kids when they're young! Teaching them to read labels at an early age helps them make healthier food choices and also children with food allergies can learn to read what snacks they should avoid. Here are a few ways to help make teaching these habits a bit easier as well as a breakdown of how certain ingredients aren't good for you.

WHEN SHOPPING:

1.) Start by getting two containers of their favorite foods,like two boxes of cereal and compare food labels of sugar and fiber content. Explain how even though sugar can help boost energy too much intake can cause weight gain and effect their teeth.

2.)Be sure to point out the words saturated fat,trans fat and cholesterol on the label of your child's favorite cookies or chips.Explain how these can effect the heart. Play a game,finding which snack has little or none of these on label.

3.) Have them look for the words High Fructose Corn Syrup in the ingredients of their juices,drinks and fruit yogurt. Explain how if high fructose corn syrup is at the top of the ingredients list that means its used the most. Make a game of them finding a juice with none or high fructose corn syrup at the end of the list.

AT HOME:

1.) Ask your child to read the serving size of their favorite chips,cookie,juice and as a bit of a science experiment,measure out the exact serving size so they can have a visual of what a serving size looks like and they'll know how much of a snack the should be having. 

2.)Read the amount of calories that your child has in the serving measured out. Compare the calories to the 2,000 calories most people consume in a day. 

3.)Teach them to pick foods with less sodium and explain how little sodium is needed for fuel.

4.) Look at the protein content in food with an explanation of importance of protein for our organs,muscles and blood.

5.) Last but not LEAST teach them that a short ingredient list with ingredients they recognize is more likely to be a healthier choice than a long list of chemicals!! 

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Spring Time Cooking!






                                                 Tomatoes,Arugula and Feta Pasta Salad!

A quick cold salad is the best go to quick meal and a potluck favorite!
Top that with HEALTHY ingredients and you can't go wrong!

INGREDIENTS:

-6oz of uncooked wheat penne pasta
-2 tbsp of olive oil
-1 tbsp of cider vinegar
-1 tbsp of minced garlic
-2 cups chopped tomatoes
-3oz crumbled feta
-2 large handfuls of arugula

Directions:

Cook pasta according to the directions on the package. Combine all ingredients,except the feta and arugula,in a large mixing bowl. Once cooked,drain and transfer into a large mixing bowl,toss well. Cool pasta in refrigerator for 2-3hr or overnight.Add arugula and feta just before serving.


                                                                 And Enjoy!!