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Healthy EatingNutrition

7 Reasons to Grow Your Own Organic Vegetable Garden.

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During the last decades there has been a change towards mechanization and homogenization of farming, which uses pesticides, additives, herbicides, synthetic fertilizers and mass-production techniques. All this is clearly affecting mankind’s health, and new diseases are spreading rapidly amongst humans and animals (bird’s flu being the most recent one).

The World Health Organization produces reports to show how the use of chemicals and other products on food, coupled with the manufacturing processes involved, are actually a threat for our health.

If you have space for a few pots or even a small piece of land, it is a wise decision to grow your own organic vegetable garden. Today I’m presenting you with seven reasons for doing this:

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1. You will have no additives in your vegetables. Research by organic food associations has shown that additives in our food can cause heart diseases, osteoporosis, migraines and hyperactivity.

2. There will be no pesticides or synthetic fertilizers used. These chemical products are applied to obtain crops all the time regardless plagues or weather conditions, and affect the quality of the vegetables. Besides, pesticides are usually poisonous to humans.

3. Your vegetables will not be genetically modified (GM). Antibiotics, drugs and hormones are used on vegetables to grow more and larger ones. One of the consequences of this practice are vegetables which look all the same and are usually tasteless. Besides, we end up consuming the hormones that have been used on the vegetables, with the potential risks for our health.

 

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Coke’s Original Recipe: Was There Really Cocaine in It?

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Coca-Cola is an absolute giant when it comes to marketing. Few brands are so well recognized across the globe and the company has done a brilliant job in making itself hip, cool and even apparently healthy! (Despite the fact that Coca-Cola is anything but…)

If you need any more proof that this is a company that knows how to handle its marketing, then look no further than the modern depiction of Father Christmas. Santa used to be green! It is only thanks to Coca-Cola that he looks the way he does today…

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Or at least that’s what some people believe. Other sources say this isn’t true. But if it isn’t true and Coca-Cola have led us to believe that they invented Santa’s look… then isn’t that even more impressive?

But while Coke might be great at crafting an image and spreading the word, there is one persistent rumor that they have had a hard time quashing. That rumor is that the original recipe included cocaine and that this is what gave rise to the name.

It sounds like playground logic but as it turns out, there may just be some truth to it…

 

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Eat ThisHealthy EatingNutrition

4 Nutrient-Rich Ingredients in Sushi You Should Know

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Sushi is often regarded as a health food, mainly because it contains the following nutrient-rich ingredients.

  1. Fish

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Fish is a good source of protein, iodine as well as several vitamins and minerals. In addition, it’s one of the few foods that naturally contain vitamin D. What’s more, fish contains omega-3 fats needed for your brain and body to function optimally. They help fight medical conditions like heart disease and stroke.

Fish consumption is also linked to a lower risk of developing certain autoimmune diseases, depression and loss of memory and vision in old age.

 

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Healthy EatingHealthy LivingNutrition

5 Claims About Aspartame You Should Know

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Aspartame is an artificial sweetener, often denoted as E951. Originally sold under the brand name NutraSweet, aspartame was approved for use in food products in the 1980s.

As a sugar substitute, aspartame stimulates the taste buds on the tongue in the same way as sugar.

It is used in a variety of foods, beverages, desserts, sweets, breakfast cereals, chewing gums and weight-control products. It is also used as a tabletop sweetener. Aspartame is highly controversial. Thousands of websites claim that it is seriously harmful. Aspartame is blamed for hundreds of health problems, ranging from cancer to headaches.

However, most of these have not been confirmed by science. Below is a review of the scientific evidence behind the most common claims.

 

  1. Claim: Aspartame Causes Cancer

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A few notable animal studies from the European Ramazzini Foundation suggest that aspartame may cause cancer. However, other scientists have criticized these studies for using poor methods and not being very relevant to humans.

One observational study in humans found a weak connection between certain types of cancer and aspartame, but only in men.

Other observational studies did not find an association between aspartame intake and brain or blood cancer. Additionally, scientific reviews have concluded that there is no evidence that aspartame in the human diet causes cancer.

 

  1. Claim: Aspartame Causes Weight Gain

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As a low-calorie sweetener, aspartame is commonly consumed by people who want to enjoy the sweetness but need to limit their sugar intake. Although it is clear that aspartame does not cause weight gain, its usefulness for weight loss has been questioned.

However, most studies suggest that replacing sugar with aspartame may be useful to prevent future weight gain.

 

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Healthy EatingNutrition

5 Benefit of Whole Grains Consumption You Should Know

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Cereal grains (or simply grains) are small, hard and edible dry seeds that grow on grass-like plants called cereals. They are a staple food in most countries, and provide more food energy worldwide than any other food group, by far.

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Grains have played a major role in human history, and grain agriculture is one of the main advancements that fueled the development of civilization. They are eaten by humans, and also used to feed and fatten up livestock. Then grains can be processed into various different food products.

Whole foods are always preferable to processed foods. Grains are no exception. Whole grains tend to be high in fiber and various important nutrients, and they do NOT have the same metabolic effects as refined grains.

The truth is, hundreds of studies link whole grain consumption to all sorts of beneficial effects on health,

Longevity: Studies from Harvard showed that people who ate the most whole grains were 9% less likely to die over the study periods, with a 15% reduction in death from heart disease.

Obesity: Those who eat more whole grains have a lower risk of becoming obese, and tend to have less belly fat.

Type 2 diabetes: People who eat more whole grains have a lower risk of becoming diabetic.

Heart disease: People who eat more whole grains have up to a 30% lower risk of heart disease, the world’s biggest killer.

Colon cancer: In one study, 3 servings of whole food per day were linked to a 17% lower risk of colorectal cancer. Many other studies have found similar results.

 

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3 Health Benefits of Decaf Coffee You Should Know.

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Decaf is short for decaffeinated coffee. It is coffee from coffee beans that have had at least 97% of their caffeine removed. There are many ways to remove caffeine from coffee beans. Most of them include water, organic solvents or carbon dioxide.

Coffee beans are washed in the solvent until the caffeine has been extracted into it, then the solvent is removed.

The beans are decaffeinated before they are roasted and ground. The nutritional value of decaf coffee should be almost identical to regular coffee, apart from the caffeine content.

However, the taste and smell may become a little milder and the color may change, depending on the method used. This can make decaf coffee more pleasing to those who are sensitive to the bitter taste and smell of regular coffee.

Despite having been demonized in the past, the truth is that coffee is mostly good for you. It is linked with numerous health benefits, which are mainly attributed to its antioxidant content and other active substances.

However, the specific health effects of decaf coffee can be hard to determine. This is because most studies assess coffee intake without distinguishing between regular and decaf coffee, and some don’t even include decaf coffee.

Also, most of these studies are observational. They cannot prove that coffee caused the benefits, only that drinking coffee is associated with them.

 

  1. Type 2 Diabetes, Liver Function and Premature Death

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Drinking coffee, both regular and decaf, has been linked with reduced risk of type 2 diabetes. Each daily cup may reduce the risk up to 7%.

This suggests that elements other than caffeine may be responsible for these protective effects.

The effects of decaf coffee on liver function are not as well studied as those of regular coffee. However, one large observational study linked decaf coffee with reduced liver enzyme levels, which suggests a protective effect. Drinking decaf coffee has also been linked with a small but significant reduction in the risk of premature death, as well as death from stroke or heart disease.

 

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Eat ThisFoodHealthy EatingNutrition

5 Reasons You Should Include Olive Oil in your Cooking

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Quality extra virgin olive oil is a super healthy fat that retains its beneficial qualities during cooking. The main reason you may not want to use it, is that heating it too much can have adverse effects on the flavor.

The belief that olive oil oxidizes and goes rancid during cooking is a harmful myth that scares people from using this incredibly healthy fat.

Here are 5 reasons you should include olive oil in your cooking.

  1. Olive Oil is High in Monounsaturated Fats, Which Are Stable When Heated

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Each fat molecule (triglyceride) consists of a glycerol molecule linked to three fatty acids. All glycerol molecules are the same… but there are hundreds of different fatty acids in nature and the health effects vary between them.

Fatty acids can be either saturated, monounsaturated or polyunsaturated. Saturated fatty acids have no double bonds, monounsaturated have one (mono = one) and polyunsaturated fatty acids have many double bonds (poly = many).

Here’s the important part… the double bonds are unstable when heated and they tend to react with oxygen. Therefore, the more double bonds a fatty acid molecule has, the more unstable it will be when used for cooking. This is the reason saturated fats (zero double bonds) like coconut oil are very resistant to heat.

Although most vegetable oils contain polyunsaturated fatty acids with many double bonds, olive oil contains mostly monounsaturated fatty acids with one double bond. As it turns out… having one double bond in the fatty acid molecule is not a bad thing. It’s only the polyunsaturated fatty acids (like those in soybean and canola oils) that are harmful.

Of course… oils are usually a mix of different types of fatty acids. Olive oil, for example, is 73% monounsaturated, 11% polyunsaturated and 14% saturated. In other words, the heat resistant monounsaturated and saturated fats make up 87% of olive oil.

 

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HealthHealthy EatingHealthy Living

2017 Myth Busters: Saturated Fat is Unhealthy for You

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For many decades, people have believed that eating saturated fat can increase the risk of heart disease. In fact, this idea has been the cornerstone of mainstream nutrition recommendations.

Guess what? That is absolutely not correct.

Studies, that were published in the past few decades prove that saturated fat is completely harmless.

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A massive study published in 2010 looked at data from a total of 21 studies that included 347,747 individuals. They found absolutely no association between saturated fat consumption and the risk of heart disease.

 

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2017 Nutrition; Maple Syrup or Refined Sugar? You Decide.

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Even though maple syrup does contain some nutrients and antioxidants, it is also very high in sugar. Calorie for calorie (and sugar gram for sugar gram), maple syrup is a very poor source of nutrients compared to “real” foods like vegetables, fruits and unprocessed animal foods.

Replacing refined sugar with pure, quality maple syrup is likely to yield a net health benefit, but adding it to your diet will just make things worse. Maple syrup is a “less bad” version of sugar… kind of like honey and coconut sugar. That does NOT make it healthy.

Same as with all sugar-based sweeteners, if you’re going to eat it, make sure to do so in moderation only.

 

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5 Benefits of Raw Organic Cacao You Should Know.

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Raw organic cacao has been dubbed the newest trendy “superfood.” It is a healthy, unprocessed product from the same cocoa plant that chocolate comes from.

Nutrient-rich raw cacao is available in the form of crushed “nibs” or powder, and both can be used a natural sweetener or added to smoothies, oatmeal, acai bowls, and vegan baked treats. We’ve listed five health benefits you’ll experience by adding this powerful superfood to your diet, with information aggregated from Be Good Organics and Women’s Health UK.

 

  1. Heart Health

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Hundreds of years ago, the Aztecs reportedly knew the cardiac benefits of cacao. According to Dr. Joseph Mercola’s website, they dubbed the plant “yollotl eztli,” which means “heart blood.”

A 2009 study found that eating cocoa is associated with reduced risk of coronary heart disease and stroke. The superfood is bursting with magnesium, which is important for a healthy heart and helps turn glucose into energy.

 

  1. Cholesterol

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Raw organic cacao has over 40 times the antioxidants of blueberries. These antioxidants come from the plant’s surplus of flavonoids and can result in increased good cholesterol — called HDL — in the blood.

 

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