All Entries For healthy food

Know Your GMOs (Q & A)

For the past several years, GMOs (Genetically Modified Organisms) have been dominating the health news headlines. But what are GMOs, really? What do they do? What kinds of foods contain them? And—most importantly—are they really safe to consume? Let's set the record straight on these common questions about GMOs.
Q: What are GMOs?
A: Genetically modified organisms, or GMOs (also called GE or GM foods), are the result of a laboratory process in which the genetic material of living organisms is manipulated and then artificially inserted into the genes of an entirely unrelated plant or animal. The foreign genes can come from bacteria, viruses, animals, insects or even humans. GMOs are known as ''transgenic'' organisms because they involve the transfer of genes. 
Posted 10/6/2015  12:00:00 AM By:   : 15 comments   11,996 views
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Walnut Health Benefits

Walnuts, which are part of the tree nut family, provide an array of health benefits, and because of their versatility, they can be chopped and sprinkled onto salads, vegetable dishes, yogurt, fruits, and desserts. Here's why you should get more of these healthy nuts in your everyday diet. 

Walnuts Help You Feel Fuller Longer

While walnuts are calorie-dense, the combination of Omega-3 fats, protein, and fiber work to help keep you feeling full longer. Caloric intake should be a consideration in any weight-management plan, but not all calories are created equal. Because of their high protein and fiber, a meal that includes walnuts can help prevent the consumption of empty calories later in the day.

Walnuts Are Heart-Healthy

Like most tree nuts, walnuts can help fight heart disease. Walnuts contain a high amount of antioxidants and Omega-3 fatty acids, which have been shown to lower bad cholesterol and increase good cholesterol production.

Walnuts May Help Prevent Cancer

Studies have shown that regular, daily walnut consumption can help prevent certain types of cancer, such as pancreatic, prostate, and breast cancer.

Walnuts Support a Healthy Lifestyle

Studies have shown that people who consume tree nuts regularly take in more fiber, potassium, calcium, magnesium, and vitamin E, as well as less sodium than people who do not eat tree nuts. 

Walnuts May Help Prevent Diabetes

All types of nuts, including walnuts, have been linked to a decreased risk of diabetes. For individuals with a higher risk of diabetes, adding walnuts to your diet is an easy and delicious way to help take control of your health.

Walnuts Can Support a Healthy Pregnancy

Don't throw out the walnuts after successfully getting pregnant. Women who eat diets rich in fatty acids like those found in walnuts can reduce the risk of certain types of food allergies in their unborn child. 

Walnuts Might Make You Feel Less Stressed

If you suffer from daily stress, walnuts just might be the ideal food for you. Eating walnuts and walnut oil has been shown to lower resting blood pressure and blood pressure responses to stress, which can help keep you calm and relaxed.

Walnuts Can Help You Sleep

Whether your sleep problems stem from stress or other factors, eating walnuts can help induce sleep. Walnuts naturally contain melatonin, which is a compound many people buy over-the-counter to aid in sleep.

Walnuts Can Improve Hair Health

In addition to being great for your internal organs, walnuts also contain biotin, which can strengthen hair, reduce hair loss, and improve hair growth.

Walnuts Fosters Healthy Skin

Walnuts are rich in B-vitamins and antioxidants, which prevent free radical damage, wrinkles, and other signs of aging, making them the perfect food for people who want healthier, glowing skin.

Walnuts May Help Prevent Dementia

Studies have shown that regular consumption of walnuts can help ward off dementia. Eating walnuts can help prevent memory and learning problems while fostering healthy emotional control.

Whether you're a casual nut eater or someone looking to make healthy diet changes, eating more walnuts should be a no-brainer!
Posted 10/3/2015  10:00:00 AM By: SparkPeople Guest Blogger : 6 comments   13,353 views
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The Natural Benefits of Ginger

The next time you get an upset stomach, you might be relieved to know that you don't have to down spoonfuls of gross pink fluid or chew chalky tablets. In case of bellyache, stock your fridge with one thing: Ginger. Hundreds of years ago, people sailed all over the globe in search of this natural soother of upset bellies. Ginger has been proven to reduce nausea and vomiting, even in chemotherapy patients. But that's not the only reason you should start consuming more of this spice. 

Posted 7/28/2015  9:00:00 AM By: SparkPeople Guest Blogger : 11 comments   20,617 views
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$20 Food Showdown: Fast Food vs. Healthy Food

Budget constraints prevent many people from eating right.

"I can't afford to buy healthy food."
"Fruits and vegetables are too expensive."
"Grocery store prices are astronomical."
"It's cheaper to eat fast food."

We hear these "excuses" every day--and they're good ones. But we don't give up that easily and believe any excuse can be overcome. Today we're setting out to prove that healthy eating is possible on any budget.

We compared the cost of unhealthy foods from the drive-thru, freezer section and snack foods aisle to the cost of healthy foods. By making even one of these swaps, you can make room in your grocery budget for a few new healthy foods.

The photos below aim to show the diversity in healthy foods available. Prices may vary in your area (some items were on sale when we shopped), but we think you'll be shocked at how far you can stretch a buck at the supermarket when you buy healthy foods!
Posted 4/18/2013  6:00:00 AM By: Stepfanie Romine : 702 comments   1,853,994 views
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Could Peaches, Cherries, and Plums Fight Obesity and Diabetes?

Metabolic syndrome has become increasingly common in the United States and paves the way toward obesity and heart disease for millions of people every year. Since these are two of the most common chronic diseases today, making lifestyle modifications are important especially changes in diet and exercise.
A new study found that stone fruits known as drupes contain compounds that could reduce serious health risks from obesity and inflammation found with metabolic syndrome. Since insulin resistance or diabetes, hypertension, cholesterol abnormalities and abdominal obesity affect millions of people every year, this could be a very important finding. Although lifestyle, genetic predisposition, and diet play an influential role, research findings suggesting diet can be turned into an asset instead of liability provides some hope for those seeking to change their medical condition outcomes.
While it is great that stone fruits can help us reach health goals, they only help if we include them in our diets. 
Posted 8/13/2012  10:00:00 AM By: Tanya Jolliffe : 41 comments   27,946 views
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Getting Your Kids Excited About Healthy Foods

When I was little, I had no concept of where my food came from.  I just knew that my mom went to the store and came back with lots of things for my family to eat.  I never thought about the journey my food went through to make it into the store and eventually onto my plate. 
Over the past few years I got interested in starting a garden.  I like the idea of growing my own food, and I also like my kids being involved in the process of planting, taking care of, and eventually eating the fruits and vegetables from our own backyard.  I think that gives them a much greater appreciation for what food goes through to make it to our table.  Last year we started small with two container gardens.  This year we are expanding to a small raised bed in the backyard (and who knows where we might go from there!)  I let the kids help decide what we are going to plant and they help with watering, weeding, and picking the produce when it’s ripe.  They get so excited about the food we grow, and would much rather eat it than just about anything else.  It’s a great way to teach them something and develop healthy habits at the same time.
Studies show that children are more likely to eat the foods they grow, choose at the grocery store, and/or prepare. These activities often expand the variety of foods they enjoy and can mean a wider range of nutrients consumed. It is also a good tactic for children who are picky eaters.”
My kids love helping me cook.  That’s one area where I’m trying to develop more patience.  I spend a fair amount of time cooking, but I like to do everything myself so that it gets done as quickly as possible.  When the kids help, it slows down the process and speeds up the mess, but it’s worth it.  My kids are more likely to eat something they helped make because they feel pride in it, and also because they are sure of exactly what’s in it.   (“Mom can’t sneak in some mushrooms or zucchini if she knows I’m watching!”)
Whether your children learn about about food through gardening, meal preparation or just talking about healthy eating, parents are the best teachers and examples.  Establishing healthy habits early will help your kids develop habits to last a lifetime.  Check out Tips, Tricks and Treats to Teach Kids to Cook and A Parent’s Guide to Nutrition for Kids for more ideas. 
Do you agree that healthy eating habits begin at home?  How do you teach the young people in your life to develop an appreciation for healthy food?   
Posted 7/10/2012  6:00:00 PM By: Jen Mueller : 11 comments   12,003 views
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10 More Healthy Foods Under $3

Our original top 10 list was so popular, Healthy Eats readers asked for more. Here are 10 more healthy foods that won’t break the bank.

#1: Carrots
Cost: $0.89 per 1 pound bag (about 9 carrots)
The benefits of carrots, “They give you healthy eyes, mom” they always tell me. But beta-carotene has more benefits than meets the eyes. It also helps promote healthy bones, skin and hair. Make carrot soup, add to a stir-fry, or slice into strips for an easy kids snack.

#2: Low fat cottage cheese
Cost: $2.75 per 16-ounce container
This perfect combo of protein, carbs and fat will help keep you satisfied. It’ll also give you a boost of calcium with 10% of your daily recommended dosage in every ½ cup serving. If you’ve been passing this underappreciated food in your dairy aisle, check out more reasons why we love it. 
Posted 5/23/2012  2:00:00 PM By: SparkPeople Guest Blogger : 18 comments   16,733 views
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CONTEST CLOSED: Giveaway: Win a $79 Snack Box from Healthy Surprise

Contest closed! The winners are:





A cool new company contacted us recently, hoping we'd test their product and offer a giveaway. It's called Healthy Surprise, and right from the outset, I loved this idea.
Healthy Surprise is a subscription-based service that ships a box of healthy, natural, gluten-free and vegan snacks right to your door each month. In lieu of a subscription, you can also give yourself (or a friend) a one-time gift shipment, which is a really thoughtful and fun idea for the healthy eaters in your life. They offer four different packages that vary in size and price, starting at just $33/month (plus shipping) for the smallest package (which includes 16-20 snack servings) and goes all the way up to $333/month (free shipping) for the largest package of 200+ snacks, which might be more fitting for a club or workplace than an individual's home. You don't get to pick and choose what goes into your box, which is part of the fun—hence the "surprise" part, but as a bonus, you'll end up trying foods you never knew you liked and bring the fun back to snacking!
Posted 3/30/2012  6:00:00 PM By: Nicole Nichols : 46 comments   13,232 views
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The Real Deal with 'Pink Slime'

If I offered you lean ground beef with the assurance that it was high in protein, low in fat, and tested to be free from Salmonella and E.Coli, wouldn't you think it was the best beef in town (except if you are a vegetarian of course)? Would you think the meat sounded as good if I told you it contained lean meat "trimmings" and had been treated with ammonium hydroxide?
There has been a lot of talk about pink slime in the news recently, even though this isn't new and has been reported about previously. The movie Food, Inc talked about it back in 2008. British celebrity chef Jamie Oliver taught about it on his ABC series Food Revolution several years later. Last year Taco Bell faced a lawsuit and a media firestorm over accusations that they used fillers in their taco meat. So why all the hype now about the use of anti-microbial agents and meat trimmings especially when the USDA has repeatedly cited the process to be generally recognized as safe (GRAS) with an update as recently as last year?
Posted 3/19/2012  2:00:00 PM By: Tanya Jolliffe : 81 comments   28,808 views
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WATERMELON: Nature’s Sweet Summer Treat

Watermelon is a staple on nearly every summer table, but did you know that it’s also a powerful and versatile health food: it has less than 50 calories per serving; it is an abundant source of vitamins C, A, and B6; plus, its 90% water, which makes it both refreshing and a natural source of hydration. Use the following ten recipes to spice up your cooking, get healthy, and wow your guests with this sweet summer treat.

Watermelon Strawberry Smoothie

Watermelon Blueberry Banana Split

Spicy Watermelon Marinade

Watermelon and Blueberry Salad with Spinach and Feta
Posted 7/20/2011  6:00:00 AM By: Samantha Donohue : 20 comments   11,890 views
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My Favorite Hot and Cold Sandwiches

Sandwiches are comfort food, they travel well, and they'll satisfy the appetites hungry, growing boys--and I have a surplus of those in my house. Today I'm sharing two of my favorite sandwich recipes, one hot and one cold. The Greek-inspired tuna sandwich is great for picnics, and the Philly one is a favorite on cold nights.

Big Fat Greek Sandwich
I love a good sandwich, one that's so big you have to smash to fit into your mouth. This one is big on flavor, light on fat! This is a Greek-inspired twist on the New Orleans classic, the Muffaletta. That one has lots of cured meats, plus an Italian pickled vegetable salad. This one gets its tang from feta cheese and a light vinaigrette.

  • 260 calories
  • 8.8 g fat

    Posted 4/18/2011  6:22:23 PM By: Meg Galvin : 27 comments   16,492 views
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  • Is Black Rice the Next Super Food?

    There are many cost effective and nutrient rich foods. Brown rice is one choice frequently selected as a side dish or to stretch a casserole. We have known for a while that fruits such blueberries and blackberries are high in antioxidants. New research presented at the American Chemical Society meeting has found that black rice might top them both in the cost effective nutritious super food category.

    Posted 9/6/2010  1:35:53 PM By: Tanya Jolliffe : 123 comments   29,723 views
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