My anti-fatigue aliments

Feeling a bit tired in the middle of the day? Whether it is seasonal or temporary, to give yourself a boost, no need to take extra vitamins. Just stop at any farmer’s market or grocery to fill up your cart or bag. Usually when I feel down I start with fruits. I buy oranges, kiwis, pineapples and grapefruits.

Credit @ Healthy Planet

To fight fatigue, the best ally is vitamin C. Get some! Get plenty of those. It has powerful antioxidants and stimulates the defense mechanism of your body to fight anything that is bad externally. It also allows better absorption of iron present in the same food that you would have consumed during the same meal. Also I buy peppers, cabbage, and spinach. When you mixed those with vitamin C, you will have vitamin C, and folic acid. The latter has the potentiality of aiding your body to defend or to prevent anemia. Try to consume 2 to 3 different type of vegetables a day. Everything is permissible.

Also you can  buy pure dark chocolate and dried fruits .These are high in magnesium. Magnesium is important to our body for it maintains our muscular contractions and our body movements. Thus, one must not neglect it .otherwise, cramps, muscular pains and fatigue will soon and quickly appear. For those of you that do not know, the daily dose of Mg is between 360 and 420 mg. For those of you who like fish. I would stop at the fish market and I would get, crab, salmons. They are all rich in vitamin E, which is also an antioxidant, which plays a role in protecting cellular membranes and brings resources necessary to the brain for better function. To be on top of your shape you must consume 300 g of fish per week. However please be careful for mercury exposure. For those of you that are, meat lover, it is also good to consume red meat such as steak…with this you will get lot of iron. Women have a tendency to lack in iron. Iron is the ally for us to feel alive and to fully feel our tonus. It is advised to eat up to 400 g of red meat per week. You can also choose to alternate with white meat to combat anti-fatigue. For instance, you can buy turkey…turkey contains selenium. It is also an antioxidant that reduces fatigue and boosts your immune system. Lack of selenium may result in cardiovascular problem because selenium contributes to good health for your skeletal muscles and cardiac muscles. It is recommended to consume 60 mg per day for man and 50 mg for women. Also important, you must not forget cheese and yogurts for they contain calcium. If you lack calcium anything that you undertake will seem more tiring and will require more energy. To avoid excess consumption of fat,try to limit cheese to about 50 g per day and choose low fat yogurt.

So readers,try these and let me know how it works out 🙂

What ….hot dogs serve like meals?

All right, So I know lots of you may be wondering..Why hot dogs? Why  is she blogging about those..

Credit :marsmett544 from flikcr

Well, if you are one of those that watch TV pretty often. Have you ever seen this commercial in which a family is reunited at the table for diner and they eat hot dogs and tomatoes? So my reaction was, like, really? What the heck are you eating with your families? hot dogs!?! Not saying that hot dogs are totally wrong to eat, but I believe that Americans are not fully cognizant of all the chemicals, sodium or fat that they contain. Well, if you try to read an hot dog label, you’ll see that it is usually made of meat (could be beef turkey, pork, a mixture of all three), fat, salt, lots of chemicals, flavorings. I know that one hot dog is about 250 calories. Let’s say you eat two a day. It’s already taken out ¼ of your 2000 calories deal daily. Moreover, hot dogs are not a good source of protein for those of you that may mistake it with meat. It’s just totally different. Hot dogs also have preservatives called sodium nitrites that preserves its flavors, pink color and prevents rancidity. Also, a 2010 study conducted by Harvard University found that eating one serving of processed meat a day increased risk of heart disease by 42 percent and diabetes by 19 percent.

Well I am not saying that we need to deprive ourselves completely. To be honest with you I do not intend to do so. I just love them at barbeques and sometimes at home when I’m watching a movie. What I recommend is to save them for special occasion like a major barbeque…also one thing that might help is to buy brands that are lower in fat and sodium for it will somewhat decrease chances of acquiring certain illnesses such as diabetes, heart disease and so forth.

Food matters

So today, I had a pretty lengthy and heated discussion with my sister about “Food Matters”. I am sure that a lot of you have heard about it prior to today. If you haven’t I highly recommend that you take a look at the trailer below.

Overall this documentary was very informative, for it covers aspects and points that deal with everyday life and activities: the cause /effects of food and nutrition on our body and health. This documentary is constructed in such a way that it promotes heath and it proposes solutions to the crucial health problems recurrent in our society .There are many points that this documentary enlightens and made me really take into account.

For instance, my sister talked to me about how over the past 40-50 years our food has changed greatly. Nowadays not only our foods but also our consuming methods have shifted. Back then, our grandparents did not know the frozen food or the fast food and microwave era. The industrialized foods have revolutionized the food consumption. Also, the invention of microwave and all food modifiers, genetically transformed food, make a big contrast with food consumption now and then. Unfortunately the new ways of consumption makes the population more fragile and more likely to catch fatal diseases than the old traditional ways. What is important in this documentary is basically saying that malnourishment caused depression. That one can treat cancer and cure disease by having a good nutrition.

Like my sister said.. ”she does not think she can do anything, substantially, to greatly change the current crisis except inform the more people she can. She wanted to share this to make them aware of what they are exposed to. Because the only way for everyone to take action is to first understand and to know .”

What about you?Do you think you can do anything?

“Spices and Herbs” enhance flavors in a healthy way

I am from the Caribbean and back home our foods are rich in herbs and spices. Herbs and spices are a vital part of our diet and lifestyle. So, adding more spices and herbs to your cooking/food is a step that you can easily adopt to engage in a healthier diet thus toward enhancing your overall health and that of your family. Common herbs and spices may help protect against certain chronic conditions, such as cancer, diabetes, and heart disease.

Herbs are usually from plants and plants parts for instance basil, parsley, rosemary whereas spices often come from the seeds or the roots of plants. It is beneficial to consume or to add herbs and spices to your food for sometimes it can limit inflammation. For example, cinnamon, a good antioxidanthas been linked to lower inflammation, as well as reductions in blood glucose concentrations in people with diabetes.

Credit:Essential survival

As a way to manage your health, herbs and spices are a fantastic way to increase the medicinal value of your food. They can also have the role of flavor boosters. So for instance, instead of adding an exaggerated amount of salt in your food to enhance the taste, you can liberally season them with herbs and spices. Below are some herbs and spices you may have been enjoying with no idea as to their value:

Garlic – Garlic contains a substance which has antibacterial, antioxidant, lipid lowering and anti-hypertension properties. Moreover, fresh garlic has more potent cardio-protective properties than processed garlic.

Cinnamon – Cinnamon not only prevents heart disease, it can also prevent diabetes. It was discovered that consummation of cinnamon increased in antioxidants connected with lowering blood sugar levels.

Onions – Onions contain an antioxidant found to prevent heart disease and stroke.

Rosemary-A cornerstone of Mediterranean cooking, this distinctive, aromatic herb is packed with flavor and antioxidants

Oregano – This herb contains a substance which has been proven to be effective against blood pressure.

Credit:7 spices

Knowing that herbs and spices have antioxidants and anti-inflammatory effects on your body’s health, I would recommend using them more in soups, meats, anything that is food rather than salt. They have lower calories and can increase the medicinal values of your food.

Raw food pro or not?

Credit @ sean dreilinger from flickr

I am no big fan of raw food. I confess, I have tried more than twice to consume some raw foods just to ensure what it is about it I dislike. I guess the reason is simple: it is raw. Plus, I was raised in a country in which predominantly all food I ate was thoroughly cooked. Anyways that is beside the point; let us not talk about what I consume but rather about how raw food has been seen in the eyes of some individuals.

Well, to bring light to those of you who don’t know, a raw food diet is typically made of 75% of vegetables and fruits. Raw food diet includes mostly nuts, dried fruits, sprouts, beans, seaweed. “Raw foodists” believe that this diet increases energy, give you more mental clarity, leaner body, clearer skin and they also believe it cuts the risk of disease. Usually raw food diet is organic and nothing is heated beyond 115-118 degrees Fahrenheit. From a raw food standpoint if you cook beyond 115 degrees, you destroy the enzymes that your body need in order to digest food .You are also destroying much of the food’s nutritional content. This is where it becomes problematic because on the other hand, The American Dietetic Association challenges this assertion. It says the body — not what goes in it — produces the enzymes necessary for digestion. The ADA also says cooking food below 118 degrees may not kill harmful, food-borne bacteria. Thus, if it does not kill harmful bacteria, it becomes a public health issue. Most of foods borne bacteria are responsible of major food outbreaks around the world.In addition,the raw eggs, raw fish, and raw chicken that some raw foodists consume are especially dangerous.Vitamin B12 deficiency is common among raw foodists, and can lead to anemia and neurological problems—vitamin B12 is found in animal products

Recently in the news, there was this big talk about how a Canadian chef’s McNish trades steaks for raw foods. In his first cookbook, “Eat Raw, Eat Well,” the teacher and raw food consultant provides 400 raw, vegan and gluten-free recipes and explains why he switched from a traditional diet and cooking steaks to become a vegan and then a raw food chief. He firmly believes that eating raw food has changed in life. Meanwhile, other people debate otherwise. Knowing that the results on whether raw food diet is healthy are mixed, what are your inputs?

The Mediterranean diet

Credit @ Oldways

The Mediterranean diet has long been considered one of the healthiest diets on the planet – and indeed it is ! There are myriad of research that proves that eating a diet rich in plant foods and healthy fat is good for us. Research also show that a Mediterranean diet protects individuals against cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, some types of cancer, Alzheimer’ s disease and also leads to a longer lifespan. The key to longer lifespan lie in the fact that this diet does not adopt modernized foods(that we in the US consume excessively) such as processed foods, deep-fried foods, tendency to eat more meat and fewer fruits and vegetables .

There is no single Mediterranean diet. Instead, each region across the world, from Spain to the Middle East , customizes the basic diet to take advantage of food availability and cultural preferences.So, if you considering adopting this new diet, it is basically up to you to adjust this diet based on your customs,cultural values and what is best for you.All you need to is to  follow the Mediterranean diet pyramid.

The Mediterranean diet include a reliance on plant foods such as vegetables, fruits, beans, whole grains, nuts, olives, and olive oil(extra virgin I insist)  along with some cheese, yogurt, fish, poultry, eggs, and wine. These foods form the basis of the plan and provide thousands of micronutrients, antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and fiber that work together to protect against chronic disease. Other key elements of the  Mediterranean Diet -necessary to render it efficient- encompass daily exercise, sharing meals with families, friends and the simple fact of appreciating eating healthy and delicious food.