Food As Medicine: Why Doctors Are Writing Prescriptions for Produce

by in Food News, March 26, 2015

Every day, millions of people — adults and children — in this country with Type 2 diabetes hit their pharmacy for a variety of medicines to control that condition as well as other obesity-related ills. But what if instead of the pharmacist giving them drugs to manage their diseases, they were handed a bin of fruits and vegetables to help prevent them? Read more

Order This, Not That: Fast-Food Mexican

by in Dining Out, March 25, 2015

There are many healthy choices you can make when ordering Mexican fare. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of unhealthy choices you could potentially make too. Here are top picks for popular Mexican hot spots, as well as those options you should skip.

 

Chipotle

Order This:

Choose a burrito bowl with 1 serving of protein (chicken and steak have the least sodium), brown rice and tomato salsa, and opt for the healthy fat of guacamole.

Nutrition Info: 630 calories; 36 grams fat; 6.5 grams saturated fat; 38.5 grams protein; 45 grams carbohydrates; 1,060 milligrams sodium

Not This:

Be wary of what you put into your burrito. Adding all three high-fat toppers — guacamole, sour cream and cheese — can add a whopping 345 calories to your base items (flour tortilla, rice, beans, 1 protein choice). This can make the calorie count skyrocket to over 1,200 per burrito.

Nutrition Info (burrito with all add-ons): 1,275 calories; 65.5 grams fat; 19 grams saturated fat; 53.5 grams protein; 120 grams carbohydrates; 2,910 milligrams sodium Read more

5 Healthy Ways to Use Canned Beans

by in Healthy Tips, March 24, 2015

Put canned beans — a healthy pantry staple — in the spotlight. Beans boast protein, fiber, folate and lots of minerals, like iron, magnesium, potassium and zinc. If you’re worried about sodium, rinse and drain beans before using to cut back on the salt by as much as 40 percent. Read more

6 Nutrients Vegetarians Need for a Healthy Diet

by in Food and Nutrition Experts, March 23, 2015

From animal rights to health concerns, there are many reasons why people choose to become vegetarians. In fact, vegetarianism is practiced by a number of cultures throughout the world, including nearly a third of the Indian population (primarily via the Hindu, Jain and Brahmin communities). There are different types of vegetarians, denoted by the prefixes attached to the title: Ovo- = eggs, Lacto- = dairy. For example, the only animal products an ovo-lacto-vegetarian eats are eggs and dairy products.

While becoming a vegetarian can lend itself to positive dietary changes, such as increased vegetable, fruit and whole-grain consumption, it does not necessarily make someone a “healthy” eater – sugar, fried foods, alcohol and refined starches can all be vegetarian! Additionally, vegetarians may be at increased risk of deficiency of certain nutrients, like protein, vitamin B12, iron, zinc, calcium and vitamin D. Check with your physician before taking supplements of any of the nutrients suggested below. Read more

Forget Frying: Day Care Food Gets a Healthy Makeover

by in Food News, March 22, 2015

Should our youngest children be scarfing down greasy fried food in the middle of their day? Is there any reason we shouldn’t be feeding our toddlers tofu? Read more

Zero Waste: 7 Ways You Can Protect the Environment When You Shop

by in Grocery Shopping, March 21, 2015

We’ve all gotten the memo: Bring a reusable bag for grocery shopping whenever you can, and choose paper over plastic when you can’t. But what other things can you do to make the least amount of impact on the environment when you’re shopping for groceries? Here are a few, along with some added incentives to adopt the reusable-bag habit. Read more

Kraft Singles Seal, Healthy-Eating Education and a Food Photographer’s Secrets

by in Food News, March 20, 2015

Cheese-Product Goodness?

And the first food to get a “Kids Eat Right” nutrition seal from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics — a trade group of registered dietitians and others working in the field of nutrition — is Kraft Singles, the plastic-wrapped “Pasteurized Prepared Cheese Product” formerly known as a “pasteurized process cheese food.” That is, until the FDA blocked it from using that label because it contained an ingredient — “milk protein concentrate” — that was not allowed in products so designated. On its website, Kraft insists its Singles are colored with “spices, not food coloring” and “now” made “with no artificial preservatives.” But one parent and nutrition advocate tells The New York Times she is “really shocked” at the endorsement. She is not alone. A former member of the academy told The Times that, when he heard about the group’s decision to award the product its first seal, his “jaw just hit the floor” and his “eyebrows just hit the ceiling.” Ouch. Read more

Thinking Outside the Guac: New Uses for Avocados

by in Healthy Tips, March 20, 2015

Don’t get us wrong — we love guacamole as much as the next person. But if that’s all you do with avocados, you’re missing out on a host of other healthy possibilities. This versatile fruit (yes, it is technically a fruit, not a vegetable) can be whipped into soups, pureed in a smoothie, blended into salad dressing, spread on a sandwich — or even slathered onto your skin for beautifying benefits. Avocados get a bad rap for being high in fat. While it’s true that 80 percent of their calories come from fat, over 75 percent of the fat is from the healthy unsaturated kind. Plus, that fat helps the body absorb more fat-soluble vitamins, like A, D, E and K. Read more

Searching for a Sugar Substitute? Five Alternatives to Classic Sugar

by in Healthy Tips, March 19, 2015

White sugar is a standby in the kitchen, but there are plenty of reasons to seek out alternatives. Alternative sweeteners lend a different flavor to foods — be they baked goods, salad dressings or cocktails — and some of them even have health benefits. (Keep in mind, though, that added sugar is added sugar, no matter the source. For your health, that should be limited to 6 teaspoons a day for women and 9 teaspoons for men.) Read more

Get Your Greens Winter Soup

by in Gluten-Free, March 18, 2015

This gluten-free soup is packed with vitamin A- and C-rich greens that’ll help increase your immunity this cold and flu season. Vitamin C also helps form collagen, a building block of connective tissue that gives strength to skin, hair, and nails, and vitamin A is important to help maintain vision and skin health. Read more

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