Monday, September 24, 2012

Cauliflower Why It's Good For You


Cauliflower is a member of the 'white' family in terms of fruits and vegetables. Included in this group are other natural foods such as bananas, mushrooms, onions, and garlic. Cauliflower contains allicin, which can improve heart health and reduce the risk of strokes, and selenium, a chemical that works well with Vitamin C to strengthen the immune system. Cauliflower can also help to maintain a healthy cholesterol level.

Folate is also found in cauliflower, which is a B vitamin that is needed for cell growth and replication. For this reason, it is often recommended that women who are pregnant or may become pregnant eat significant amounts of cauliflower in order to help their unborn children develop properly.

Of course, cauliflower is an excellent source of fiber, which helps overall colon health and can even help prevent cancer. And, most recently, it has been discovered that cauliflower, as well as other cruciferous vegetables, such as brussel sprouts and cabbage. Studies show that they contain indole-3-carbinol, a substance that can affect the metabolism of estrogen in the body, and prevent breast cancer and other female cancers.

1 head cauliflower, cut into florets, trimmed of as much of the stems off as close as possible
2 large russet potato, peeled and cut into 1″ cubes boiled and mashed
1/4 cup sour cream
1 clove of chopped garlic minced fine
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, oregano, parsley and basil
3 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon each, salt and pepper
 1  container or package of Italian flavored breadcrumbs or panko

Fill a large pot with water and boil cauliflower and potatoes till tender. Drain well and add to a large bowl.  Add sour cream, parmesan, herbs, garlic, salt, and pepper, and add to food processor, heavy duty mixer with a flat beat bar or even by hand until smooth and well-combined but still  a little chunky. Roll into Italian flavored breadcrumbs.  Place on a baking sheet and bake on 350 hot oven until browned and crisp around 45 minutes.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Bananas and Potassium

Bananas are good for you!



Bananas is a super way to get much needed potassium. One banana has 422 mg of potassium, that's a little less than 1/2 a gram.

Some have associated a lack of potassium for getting nocturnal leg cramps. It is being studied that bananas may help in preventing them by adding them to your diet. If you have ever woken up to the piercing leg cramp pain in the middle of the night you will know what I mean. They are quite painful. Dehydration can cause them because of the lack of potassium in the body.

Potassium stimulates muscles, nerves and brain cells they can help reduce high blood pressure and stroke.
After age 19 it is recommended to get 4.7 g/day.  The food and drug administration says that eating diets rich in fiber will reduce your chance of heart attack. So what are you waiting for. Add a banana a day to keep that doctor away!
If you don't like bananas there are plenty other vegetables and fruits to choose from figs having the highest levels in them. Try dates, prunes,  avocado, lima beans, kiwi, oranges or mango to name a few.

Try these Nutella coated bananas, they are quite addicting!  Click Here for the Recipe

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Winter Weight, Foods to Eat to Stay on Track and Minestrone Soup Recipe



Some of the best foods can help you maintain your weight and still be healthy all winter long.
Keep in mind to limit salt intake. Water retention is a big culprit for that extra weight gain, up to an additional 5 pounds of water weight, however drinking water is very important and not to be confused with salt water retention. Even though it's winter you still need to stay hydrated.
Vegetables are in abundance that are always a great choice. Even some of the higher carb vegetables can be added to a healthy salad. Sweet potatoes, cabbage, brussel sprouts, kale, winter squash are among the few that add additional vitamins and nutrients essential to our health.
A great source of protein are legumes, beans can be made so many ways. In soups, stews, chili. I highly recommend a good minestrone soup.
Canned salmon and sardines also needed for Vitamin D which the sun provides found in both these fish.
Oranges and other citrus will provide Vitamin C, also needed for the winter months when flu and colds flourish.
Fueling your body in the right direction will make you feel and look better.

Recipe for Healthy Winter Minestrone Soup:


1 1/2 pounds of fresh plum tomatoes cleaned put through food processor left chunky or 1- 28 ounce can plum tomatoes chopped
1 onion minced
1 cup chopped curly cabbage, kale or spinach
1/2 cup chopped fennel
2 cups zucchini chopped
2 cups finger carrots
3 stalks fresh celery chopped
2 cups canned white beans of choice
3 cups water
1 tablespoon each dried oregano, basil, parsley
pinch of rosemary
3 garlic cloves finely minced
Optional: replace water with chicken broth (homemade no salt)
salt and pepper to taste or use 1/8 teaspoon each
pinch cayenne pepper

In a medium saucepan, add olive oil, garlic and onion. Saute for 3 minutes. Add the rest of the vegetables, tomatoes with juices, herbs, spices and seasonings.  Add beans. Cook for around 45 minutes until vegetables are soft.
Another option is to add pastine. You can cook pastine of choice seperately in boiled water and add just before serving.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Toenail Fungus, Injury and Good Health Habits


Toenails are pretty fragile, especially in the hotter Regions if you live there. Fungus is easily contracted.
When the big toe or other nails fall off, the term is onychoptosis, it literally means "falling nail" in Greek) it can be blamed on two major reasons, fungus or injury.

 Fungus has several differently types of microscopic fungi that can cause onychoptosis, by feeding on the keratin that is the tough protein that makes up toenails. Onchohptosis caused by fungus isn't at all that rare of a problem.  Around 5% of Americans are affected and around 20% worldwide.

If you suspect fungus here are some things to watch for that you may experience:

Nails that turn yellow, brown or white
Nails that become very thick and overgrown

Keep it covered with anti fungal medicine on it when wearing sandals especially if you lose your toenail.

Nails that are very soft, white crumble and fall off

Nails that fall off because of a fungal infection will grow back. Sometimes the new nail is infected like the old one. It also may grow in bumpy. The condition hardly ever goes away by itself. However I have had good experience using anti fungal medicines and Vick's Vapor rub. I actually applied it three times a day and kept a sock on to keep it in place for one month. The fungus went away. It doesn't always work on some strains.
I also have tried ordering online some anti fungal toenail polish that keeps it at bay. If it continues to be a problem a foot doctor normally will prescribe medication orally such as Lamisil. Read all the side effects before taking this drug. You will always be susceptible to this condition if you have had it once.
I personally have tried Lamisil a half pill every day for three months. You will have to test your liver.
It worked and my toe was fungus free for three years.  I stubbed my toe recently and it came back. Light trauma can cause this condition to come back. 

Some things to be aware of with the fungi that causes onychoptosis. It thrives in dark moist environments, wearing tight shoes, socks and stockings as well as thick nail polish will increase your risk in developing the condition. This is also transferred from foot to foot. So be careful trying on clearance shoes! Locker room, bowling shoes, etc.

Injury is also a concern. Kicking a soccer ball, jammed toes in shoes and any other type of trauma can result in nail loss. Smacked hard enough your trauma can have caused blood under the nail causing a subungual hematoma, it would be a good idea to go to a health care provide to help drain the blood from under the nail.
Whatever the cause of your nail loss, a replacement should grow back within 7 months.

Here are best practices to keep your toenails in healthy condition:

Wear clean socks made of cotton.
Buy shoes that fit and never worn by another person. Should have plenty of rooms no squished toes!
Keep toenails trimmed straight across
Make sure you use a medicated powder on your feet to keep them dry or a foot spray that kills bacteria



Homemade Coconut Oil Salt or Sugar Scrub

I was inspired from my good friend Jessica to make this coconut oil salt body scrubs. After she told me about this coconut oil body scrub s...