When I recently had my annual checkup the first thing my doctor asked was, “Are you eating enough dairy? Dark leafy greens?” She hadn’t asked that question a year ago so I wondered why now? Part of that answer lies in the fact that I’m over 40. Call it 40-something. Though I lean toward good-for-you and good-tasting foods, I didn’t know exactly why she singled out dairy and leafy greens for this particular time in my life — or if I needed to add more. That’s when I got on the phone with Lisa Sasson, clinical associate professor of nutrition and food studies at New York University, to shed some light on the “why dairy and dark leafy greens now” for those of us who are 40-something — er, 39 again.
On my recent visit to the annual Food & Nutrition Conference and Expo (the “Super Bowl of nutrition,” as it’s referred to by nutritionists), health care pros from around the country came together to talk about the hottest topics in nutrition. This year the conference was buzzing about one particular nutrient: protein. Here’s what all the fuss was about.
“Fine! Just have the CUPCAKE!” I yelled (in my head) as I practically threw the sugar-infested, oversize cupcake (that I was planning to bring to a party) at my 3-year-old son. The meltdown he was having in the pouring rain on Second Avenue was reaching gargantuan proportions. My continuous noes were clearly not working. Three-year-olds can be relentless. I raised my white flag, tore open the box and let him indulge.
If you’re a parent, you know this story all too well. If you’re a parent and have never been in a similar situation, well, then, please hand over your Cliff Notes on parenting, stat! When it comes to desserts and sweets, most of us struggle, whether we are 3 years old, 25 years old or 50 years old. It doesn’t help that treats pop up near daily at birthday parties, family events, school activities and holidays. Like all of you, I don’t like being the parent police and always saying “no.” But we are smart enough to know that we can’t let sugary indulgences be a free-for-all either.
In this week’s news: There may be one fewer reason to drink red wine; meat companies ditch the drugs; and two studies take a glass-half-empty attitude toward milk drinking.
Those of us who are addicted to coffee (put down that third cup of joe and raise your hand) would probably love to think all that java consumption is good for us in ways beyond just waking us up. Well, guess what? A new study has found that drinking coffee – both caffeinated and decaf – may be beneficial for your liver, helping to protect it.
Writing a New York Times Best Seller is no easy task. Neither is keeping a New York City restaurant packed and popular for a decade and a half. But Gabrielle Hamilton has managed to do both. Her 2011 memoir, Blood, Bones & Butter, proved that she was as good a writer as she is a chef. Now she’s finally giving her fans the cookbook they’ve been clamoring for. And the release just so happens to coincide with Prune’s 15th anniversary as one of New York’s most-beloved restaurants.
How healthy is your favorite cereal, bread, frozen pizza or go-to snack? And how does it compare with other brands crowding the supermarket shelves? Trying to figure that out can be daunting, but it just got a little less so. The Environmental Working Group, a nonprofit advocacy organization that has helped consumers parse everything from farm subsidies to cosmetics and cleaning-product toxicity, has just released a database of ratings, Food Scores: Rate Your Plate, for more than 80,000 commonly sold grocery items, aimed at helping shoppers make “healthier, greener and cleaner food choices.”
One Girl Cookies is one of Brooklyn’s most-beloved bakeries. Gem-size butter cookies, cream-filled whoopie pies, swirl-topped cupcakes and frosted layer cakes make this shop, located on a tree-lined street in Cobble Hill, an oasis of sweetness. Since opening in 2005, husband-and-wife team Dave Crofton and Dawn Casale have created a neighborhood spot for life’s most delicious treats and most precious milestones. Open its glass-paned door and a bell jingles — friends meet, couples fall in love and toddlers take their first steps. The couple have opened a second, larger cafe in Dumbo, have written a cookbook and are planning a third cafe for Industry City in Sunset Park for early 2015.
Crofton, the baker, has created a breakfast menu that offers all sorts of wonderful ways to start your day right: a fruit, granola and yogurt bowl (both the granola and the yogurt are made in-house), as well as muffins, scones, and savory and sweet breakfast breads. While he is a baker, he’s also mindful of serving a breakfast menu that’s actually good for you. “I think about health a lot when I create breakfast recipes,” says Crofton. “You can easily include whole grains in most breakfast muffins, breads, and scones. It makes them heartier and more filing, which is an important way to start the day.”
Trending on the tables of eateries from Portland to Paris: Avocado Toast. This open-faced sandwich, sometimes referred to as Avocado Mash or Avocado Smash, has gained momentum as it requires few ingredients, offers endless possibilities and, well, it’s quite the looker. We like it for the fact that it is easy and quick, and its star ingredient is one of the best things you can put on your plate.
Concord grapes may not what you might normally think of as a smoothie ingredient. But their musky, fruity and tart flavor pairs surprisingly well with the creamy texture of blended cashews and frozen bananas. Sweet and festive thanks to the rich purple color, this smoothie is perfect to serve as a healthy dessert or afternoon treat.