Nutrition - Lucky Blog – The LuckyVitamin.com Health & Wellness Blog
Lucky Blog
Home Archives Contact About Lucky Vitamin Store
Brought to you by LuckyVitamin.com
New Products Departments Brands Ailments Bestsellers On Sale






28
JAN

8 Food Trends of 2015

Filed Under: Announcements & News,Environment,Nutrition at 10:38 am | By: Jessica Justh, Senior Editor

Move over quinoa and bye bye kale.

Each new year brings new food trends in the nutrition world.  Whether it be advances in technology and the discovery of new culinary techniques or the revival of popular, healing foods from the past, what’s old is new and what’s new is, well…really interesting. That’s the wonderful thing about food — it’s completely a matter of taste, and there’s no shortage of trends to explore.

Sip on This: In major metropolitan areas people are trading in their Starbucks for coffee cups of bone broth. This nutritiously packed food contains a plethora of vitamins and minerals that can help with everything from joint pain to cellulite. Its soothing, warming – not to mention healing – qualities make bone broth the perfect comfort food this winter.

Get Smart, Be “Bulletproof”: By adding grass-fed butter and coconut oil or MCT oil to your coffee it becomes Bulletproof Coffee. This combo of ingredients is said to trigger weight loss, decrease brain fog and boost cognitive function.

Insect Invasion – Cricket Flour. Yes you read correctlyIt’s popping up in everything from protein bars to baked goods and is being promoted as the most sustainable protein on the planet. Edible insects provide protein, fats and essential amino acids without consuming as many resources or emitting anywhere near the level of greenhouse gases that are associated with the production of animal proteins.

Savory Yogurt – The Stone Barns at Blue Hill in Tarrytown, New York is known as a farm to table mecca amongst the region’s foodie locavores. Recently, they have branched out to add veggies such as beets and squash to their yogurts to rave reviews and predictably delicious results. It shouldn’t be long before other eateries hop on the bandwagon.

Millet, The New Grain – This gluten-free grain has been a staple in Eastern Europe and Asian for thousands of years.  It’s delicious, mildly sweet and fluffy when cooked. We recommend toasting millet prior to cooking to bring out its earthy flavor.

A New Superfood: Sometimes referred to as the “Queen of Superfruits”,  baobab originated in Africa and is loaded with vitamins, fiber and twice the antioxidants of acai fruit. Eat it raw or sprinkle in some baobab power to supercharge your smoothies.

The Future of Food - Molecular gastronomy has been around for a while now, but new techniques are being used to create sustainable foods utilizing plants as an alternative to animal-based foods.

Crazy for Cruciferous: Sometimes genetically modifying vegetable can be good thing, like when it results in an amazing hybrid species such as kalettes. This sweet and nutty union of brussel sprouts and kale burst onto the scene in the Fall of 2014 and is sure to be a new, featured player on the foodie scene in the new year.

 

 Leave a Comment


 
20
JAN

6 Superfood Benefits of Baobab

Filed Under: Nutrition,Superfoods at 8:00 am | By: Jessica Justh, Senior Editor

 

There’s a new superfood in town, baobab. It originated in Africa and loaded with vitamins, fiber and antioxidants. The baobab fruit has a wooden like shell and inside are powdery chunks of naturally dehydrated superfruit. So give baobab a try and reap all the benefits below:

Anti-Aging Support
Baobab fruit is very high in antioxidants that slow aging.  On a measured ORAC value score, baobab antioxidants exceed that in acai berry, pomegranates, blueberries or many other fruits. Antioxidants reduce oxidative damage from free radical formation that results from stress, pollution, toxins in our food supply, personal care, etc. Baobab is an amazing source of the antioxidants the body needs.

Vitamin C Boost
Vitamin C boosts immunity and is an antioxidant. If you thought oranges were high in vitamin C – baobab beats it out by almost 6 times. Epidemiological studies show that diets high in fruits and vegetables are associated with lower risk of cardiovascular disease, stroke and cancer, and with increased longevity. Baobab is a win-win as a natural fruit and a significant source of immune boosting Vitamin C.

Fiber Goes Regular
Baobab is one of the few fruits that is 50% fiber.  Half of every spoonful is all natural dietary fiber!  This is nature’s laxative agent, helping with elimination of toxins and promoting healthy appetite control since fiber can be more filling.

Natural Electrolytes

Especially after workouts or sweating, the body needs electrolytes to replenish. Baobab is an excellent source of potassium and magnesium, which are important for the nervous system and muscle function. Baobab fruit has almost six times more potassium than the banana. Baobab might be an athlete’s next best friend.

Moisturize without Chemicals

Baobab oil moisturizes intensely dry skin without the chemicals and fillers that many personal care items contain. Not only will you have smooth, soft skin, but your skin is absorbing Vitamins A & E plus Omega fatty acids 3, 6 & 9 from the Baobab oil, which can heal scars, reduce wrinkles and keep the skin beautiful. Add essential oils to baobab oil for natural aromatherapy.

Good for sensitive skin

Many people have skin sensitivities like eczema, psoriasis, dry skin that may be a result of the environment or a response to harsh chemicals present in a variety of skincare products.  Naturally from a tree nut, pure baobab oil is a natural alternative that is excellent for use on sensitive skin as it does not irritate or clog pores.

 Leave a Comment


 
15
JAN

8 Tips to Prevent Mindless Eating

Filed Under: Diet & Weight Loss,Nutrition at 2:48 pm | By: Jessica Justh, Senior Editor

Dr. Brian Wansink and researchers at the Food and Brand Lab at Cornell University have proven that when it comes to the psychology of eating, perception is deception. You can train your brain by making a few easy changes to your eating habits.  Here are a few simple tips for optimizing your home for overindulgence prevention.

  1. The Power of Suggestion– Having a bag of chips casually lying around your countertop is a recipe for disaster. To fix this, try having a fruit bowl on display on your counter or kitchen table. Take this even further to have some fruits and veggies easily accessible in your fridge instead of tucked away in the produce drawers.
  2. Plate Size Matters– Science reaffirms this common sense notion: the larger the plate, the larger the portion. Try making the switch from a 12-inch to a 10-inch plate. A two-inch difference in plate diameter would result in 22% fewer calories being served.
  3. See it to Believe it– You will be less likely to eat more if you portion out what you want on a plate first. We’ve all been there. Sitting on the couch with a bag of chips watching television, our bodies going through the repetitive motion of hand, bag, mouth. Next thing you know you’ve eaten the whole bag! Oops!
  4. Out of Sight Out of Mind– When eating at the dining room table keep serving dishes in the kitchen, or at least six feet away. This gives you the chance to ask yourself if you’re really hungry for more before you line up for seconds.
  5. Location, Location, Location– Where you eat is as important as what you eat. A study reported in JAMA Pediatricsfound that each additional hour of TV watched by children results in the consumption of 167 more calories.
  6. Stop Plate Overload– Refrain from over serving yourself by repeating this mantra: “20% less”. Most studies show that people can eat 20% less without even noticing it. Even better, replace that 20% with vegetables to really make a difference.
  7. Gone but not Forgotten – One of Dr. Wansink’s studies revealed that people ate more chicken wings if the bones were cleared away. When the bones where left on the table, it served as a reminder to the diners of how much they actually ate.
  8. Unplug – You will definitely eat more in front of the TV, reading or on our phone. Take the time to unplug and chew your food slowly.Let your mind focus on the flavors in your mouth. Taste your food.

Making small and consistent changes in your eating behavior will help you gradually lose weight and develop a healthy appreciation for food. It’s not a diet — it’s a lifestyle.

 

 

 Leave a Comment


 
12
JAN

7 Habits for Younger Looking Skin

Filed Under: Anti-Aging,Nutrition,Supplements at 5:18 pm | By: Jessica Justh, Senior Editor

 

Our lifestyle clearly affects how we age as well as the look and appearance of our skin. Incorporating the following seven habits into your daily routine can seriously arrest the effects of aging and help you on a path to a more luminous, youthful complexion.

Catch Some ZZZ’s               

Beauty sleep is a must for a youthful appearance. When you don’t hit the hay for the recommended 7-8 hours per night, your body produces more of the stress hormone cortisol. This breaks down collagen and gives you puffy eyes and dull skin which nobody wants.

Stay Hydrated

Drink eight glasses of water a day. Just like a sponge, skin can get flaky and dry without water. Here’s a simple equation for you: dry skin = wrinkles. When you skin is hydrated, it expands, revealing a more youthful appearance. Plus, your pores will become more elastic causing the secretion of natural oils.  Once released, pliable pores will be less congested and appear smaller.

Work Up a Sweat

Getting the blood pumping causes your arteries to contract and allows more blood to reach the skin’s surface to deliver nutrients that repair cellular damage. Plus, your pores function properly when you sweat out those nasty toxins.

Find some Zen

Earlier, we mentioned the negative effect cortisol can have on your skin. Lack of a good night’s sleep can stimulate this unwanted hormone, but adding a layer of stress to the situation makes it all the worse, further increasing the body’s cortisol levels. When we achieve a more relaxed state our bodies produce chemicals that counter these harmful stress hormones. Just start by making an effort to de-stress for as little as five minutes a day and work your way up from there, as needed. Simply, lie on your back, shut your eyes and breathe deeply.

Eat Your Greens

Our mothers were right. Who knew consuming leafy greens would make you glow? All those vegetables contain beta carotene which repairs and renews skin from the inside out. Plus, they are a great source of vitamins, minerals and age-fighting phytochemicals.

Protect Your Cells

Take skin repair to the next level by incorporating an antioxidant supplement to your regimen. Antioxidants combat aging on the cellular level by not only protecting against free radical damage but increasing cell turnover. By enhancing the regenerative qualities, you’ll reveal a younger you!

Say No to Joe

Coffee — can’t live with it, can’t live without it. Now, we’re not saying to completely eliminate java from your morning (and let’s face it, afternoon, too) routine. We’re just saying to take everything in moderation. If you currently down three cups per day; try cutting back to one. Dandy Blend is a great substitute to help you accomplish this.

 1 Comment, latest by mmillard


 
24
DEC

Healthy Holiday Appetizers

Filed Under: Health Foods,Nutrition,Uncategorized at 8:00 am | By: Jessica Justh, Senior Editor

Just because it’s the holiday season doesn’t mean you can’t make healthy choices. Here are some unique appetizers that will delight your guests’ palates and bring smiles to their faces.

Egg Snowman

 

 

Start by hard-boiling some eggs. Next, stack the eggs with kabob sticks.  Use peppercorns for the eyes and buttons, cut your carrots in rounds for the hat and finish it off with parsley for the arms.

 

 

 

 

Grinch Kabobs

 

These fun and healthy treats are perfect if you have kids coming to your dinner. Plus, they are a piece of cake to put together. Here’s what you’ll need – mini marshmallows, strawberries with the tops sliced off, a peeled banana and sliced green grapes. Place one of each ingredient on a toothpick to assemble and Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

Cucumber Tree

 

 

This cucumber tree is so clever! Start by halving a granny smith apple. Lay it cut-side down and spear it with a skewer. Take you sliced cucumber and arrange each slice in a circular pattern. Top it off with a slice of red pepper. Cut the remainder of the pepper into small pieces to act as ornaments.

 

 

 

Penguin Olives

 

 

These adorable appetizers are so cute you won’t want to eat them! Use a can of Colossal pitted black olives. Cut a lengthwise slit in 10 olives. Using half a stick of Neufchatel (or cream cheese) make ¼ teaspoon round balls with a measuring spoon. Stuff the olive so that you see the Neufchatel through the slit. Cut a carrot into ¼ inch rounds and slice a small triangle out of each slice. Next, take the cut triangle “beak” and insert into the olive. Finally, assemble the penguin with a carrot foot, stuffed olive, and olive with carrot beak.

 

 Leave a Comment


19
DEC

Choosing the Right Protein Powder for Your Body

Filed Under: Nutrition,Sports Nutrition at 8:00 am | By: Jeremy Michael, Contributing Author

 

Protein powders come in many forms.  Just walking down the aisle of your local supplement store and you will find a variety of sources for protein powders.  Options such as whey, soy, rice, vegan, egg, pea and more leave consumers feeling confused and hopeless on where to start.  When it comes to choosing the right protein powder, what works for one person might not work for you.  Choosing the right protein to fit your needs and your body’s needs is important.  For instance, some people require more protein throughout the day.  If you are a body builder, you may look for a product that contains more protein.  However, if you are a marathon runner you may want a protein powder with more carbohydrates.  Some people won’t be able to digest the ingredients of certain formulas and need more hypoallergenic powders. LuckyVitamin carries an assortment of protein powders for any individuals needs.  We are going to take a brief look at the different proteins you might find on the shelf.

One form of protein is Whey protein which is derived from dairy.  More technically defined, whey protein is the protein contained in whey, the watery portion of milk that separates from the curds when making cheese.  It contains a blend of amino acids that stimulates muscle growth.  Since this product comes from dairy, if you are allergic to dairy then a whey protein is not for you.

Another form of protein is Soy protein. It is a type of protein that is isolated from the soybean.  It is roughly 90-95% protein, it contains amino acids needed for growth, and it is nearly carbohydrate and fat free.  This replacement protein can be found in bars, meal replacement shakes, bottled fruit drinks, and other dietary supplements. Soy protein isolate can be purchased as flavored or plain soy protein shake powder.  One of the issues with soy protein is that most of the soybeans grown in the US are genetically modified (GM).

Next, you have Rice protein, which most often comes from brown rice.  It is an interesting source of protein for those who are on a restricted diet and for vegetarians.  Brown rice protein contains all 9 essential amino acids and it has been shown clinically to be effective at building muscle and aiding in muscle recovery. Not all rice proteins are created equally though and you must look for a quality product free of heavy metals and other toxins.

Hypoallergenic formulas are another great source of protein. Hypoallergenic formulas like Plant Fusion feature a vegan based protein powder. The source of the protein comes from pea, amaranth, quinoa, and artichoke. It is gluten free, dairy free, soy free, nut free and shellfish free. It contains 21 grams of protein and has a very similar amino acid profile compared to whey. Next time you are shopping for a protein powder consider your individual needs.

 

 2 Comments, latest by Diane Cote


 
17
DEC

Chicken Noodle Soup Rx:

Filed Under: Health Concerns & Ailments,Herbs,Nutrition at 8:00 am | By: Jeremy Michael, Contributing Author

 

With cold and flu season quickly approaching I wanted to breakdown one of the most commonly prescribed remedies to help get you back on your feet. No, I am not talking about antibiotics, cough syrups, decongestants, Tylenol or any type of prescription or over the counter drug. I am talking about chicken noodle soup. Moms and grand moms everywhere have long prescribed this hearty broth to help combat colds and flues. How is it though that a soup can make you feel better?  Lets breakdown a typical recipe and discuss how each ingredient plays a key role in making you feel better.

Normally when we sit down to eat soup it is boiling hot. Not only do the ingredients of the soup help make you feel better but also the temperature. This burning hot soup actually causes a change in our body temperature. We feel warm inside, maybe even start to sweat a little. This increase in body temperature helps us to fight off the infection.  It causes our blood vessels to dilate improving blood flow, which contains our natural defenders. Hot soup can actually help to clear that awful congestion you might be suffering from. A study looking at mucus velocity showed that hot chicken soup, either through aroma or taste was superior in increasing mucosal flow vs. hot or cold water. Besides the temperature the broth of this is also very hydrating for when you most need it.

Allium Sativum and Allium Cepa more commonly known as garlic and onion are two key ingredients found in almost every chicken noodle soup. Besides offering remarkable flavor profiles these vegetables actually have numerous health benefits. Both garlic and onion are anti-viral and anti-microbial, which means they help fight against unwanted pathogens. Onion is also considered a diaphoretic herb, which means it is causes the body to heat up and thus sweat. These are not the only ingredients in your soup that have health benefits though.

Herbs like Thymus vulgaris (Thyme) and Petroselinum crispum parsley are also common added ingredients in chicken noodle soup. Thyme is another one of those herbs that are antimicrobial. Another added benefit of adding thyme to your chicken noodle soup is that it is a relaxing expectorant. Relaxing expectorants are used to help break up mucus so you can get rid of the unwanted congestion.  Parsley is rich in vitamins C & A which both play a key role in supporting your immune system. This cold and flue season don’t forget that food is medicine. Try out some different chicken noodle soup recipes using a combination of different ingredients.

 Leave a Comment


 
15
DEC

How To Grow Your Own Wheatgrass

Filed Under: Health Foods,Nutrition at 8:00 am | By: Jessica Justh, Senior Editor

 

Did you know you can grow wheatgrass for as little as $1-2 per week? All you need is a few supplies and within a week you will have lush and nutritious wheat grass growing in your home. No green thumb needed. Just follow these easy steps:

1. Buy organic  wheat berries.

2. Put half a cup of wheat berries in a quart sized mason jar and fill the jar with water. Make sure the water covers the seeds. Soak the wheat berries for 8-12 hours.

3. Rinse your seeds and repeat step 2.

4. Give the wheat berries one more final rinse before you sow the seeds.

5. Cut small holes in a 10 x 10 foil tray for drainage

6. Fill the tray with moistened organic potting soil

7. Spread a single layer of “seeds” on top of the soil and spray with a water bottle.

8. Cover the tray with plastic wrap, place a plate underneath and place in a sunny window sill.

9. Keep the seeds covered for three days and spray with a water bottle every day. It’s best to use a light mist so the seeds do not move.

10. Harvest when your wheat grass is 6-10 inches high.

If you’ve never had wheatgrass juice before it’s recommended that you start off with a one ounce shot daily for a week, so that your body can acclimate itself. Wheat grass is an amazing superfood valued for its nutritional benefits. Time to drink to health. Bottoms up!

 Leave a Comment


 
22
NOV

What’s New? Santa Cruz Organic

Filed Under: Health Foods,Nutrition at 7:00 am | By: Mauricio Matusiak, Senior Editor

Are you looking for a delicious, natural, and organic juice? Look no further. Lucky Vitamin is happy to present Santa Cruz Organic products to our customers.

Santa Cruz Organic offers the best organic juices made from harvest to the bottle, with no stops in between. As a pioneer organic brand, Santa Cruz Organic was the first company to offer customers a wide range of organic, 100 percent juices and blends. They were also the first juice processor to use all organic fruit.

The Santa Cruz Organic brand’s roots stretch back to the early 1970’s when founder and nature lover, John Battendieri, began revitalizing orchards in the Santa Cruz mountains, an area known for its high-quality, flavorful fruit. Battendieri pressed his first batch of “Mr. Natural” apple juice in 1972, making it one of the first packaged organic products. The company believe nature itself is the truest form of art, and the goal is to infuse the beauty of nature’s process into everything.

Santa Cruz Organic currently offers more than 50 organic items ranging from organic fruit juices and lemonades to organic fruit sauces, chocolate syrups, peanut butters and fruit spreads available nationwide. By offering high-quality organic products, the Santa Cruz Organic brand raises awareness for the health and economic benefits of organic agriculture.

In addition, the company has been a leader in efforts to conserve water resources, build soil integrity and support a healthier ecosystem by helping growers make the decision to choose organic practices for their fields and orchards. Each year, Santa Cruz Organic buys fruit from hundreds of carefully selected organic growers, who represent thousands of acres dedicated to organic practices. Santa Cruz Organic is proud to be an official participant of the Non-GMO Project.

Additionally, you can save an extra 15% when you shop Santa Cruz Organic products at LuckyVItamin.com. Just enter the promo code NOV14NEW15 to save 15% on all items of the new brand.

 Leave a Comment

Santa Cruz Organic – Organic Pure Lime Juice – 16 oz.
Santa Cruz Organic – Organic Apple Sauce Strawberry – 23 oz.
Santa Cruz Organic – Organic Cranberry Nectar Juice – 32 oz.

 
20
NOV

6 Fermented Foods You Need In Your Diet Now

Filed Under: Health Foods,Nutrition at 8:00 am | By: Jessica Justh, Senior Editor

Fermentation is a preserving method that injects food with naturally occurring microorganisms that helps promote a diversity of cultures to thrive within your body. Consuming and creating these “live” foods have become a movement to many and an art form for some. Increase your gut flora and replenish the microbiome with these “good bacteria” foods.

Miso – This fermented soybean paste is rich in enzymes and is traditionally used in Japanese cooking. You can add miso to soups, sauces, dressings, dips and marinades.

Tempeh – Another fermented soy product that comes in a patty form, tempeh’s fermentation process allows it to retain a higher content of protein, dietary fiber and vitamins.

Kefir – More nutritious than yogurt, kefir is a fermented milk drink made with kefir “grains.” It’s considered one of the most probioticly rich foods on the planet, having originated centuries ago in the Caucasus Mountains. Are you vegan? No worries, kefir water is available in a variety of flavors.

Kombucha – Known by some as the “Elixir of Life,” kombucha is a fermented tea that is created from a SCOBY (Symbiotic Culture of Bacteria & Yeast). The outcome is an effervescent drink that contains b-vitamins, enzymes, probiotics and a high concentration of acid (acetic, gluconic, and lactic).

Kimchi – A traditional, Korean side dish made by lacto-fermentation, similar to sauerkraut.  Both spicy and sour, Kimchi is the combination a variety of Asian vegetables (like napa cabbage and daikon radish) and seasonings.

Sauerkraut Lactobacillus is at work again to give you this wonderfully tangy condiment. Derived from the German word that simply means sour white cabbage, sauerkraut has a long history of health benefits due to its high levels of glucosinolates. These compounds have been shown to have anti-cancer properties.

You can find most of these foods at your nearest health food store. Or, if you’re feeling adventurous you can try to make your own!

 1 Comment, latest by Judith Coleby


 
6
NOV

Chocolate Helps with Memory

Filed Under: Health Concerns & Ailments,Health Foods,Nutrition at 8:00 am | By: Jeremy Michael, Contributing Author

 

As if you didn’t already love chocolate enough, a small-scale study found that an antioxidant in chocolate might improve memory skills associated with age related memory loss. The study, which was released by the Journal Nature Neuroscience, included healthy people ages 50 to 69, who for three months drank a mixture high in antioxidants called cocoa flavanols. This group performed better on a memory tests than those who drank a low flavanol mixture. Flavonoids are naturally occurring compounds that can be found in a variety of foods such as fruits, vegetables and other plant-based foods. Cocoa flavanols are a unique blend of phytonutrients that can only be found in the cocoa bean. This research supports other findings showing that flavanols, especially epicatechin (found in cocoa beans), improved blood circulation, heart health and memory in mice, snails and humans.  The researchers of this study also found that the flavanol mixture was able to increase activity of the dentate gyru: the part of the brain that is involved in memory associated with recognizing faces and remembering where you parked your car.

Unfortunately for us chocolate lovers out there you would need to consume about seven average-sized chocolate bars to replicate the amount of epicatechin (138 mg) used in the study. However, if you do want to try to increase the cocoa and chocolate in your life then shop LuckyVitamin. We carry chocolate bars like Theo Chocolate, which is organic, non-GMO, vegan, kosher, soy free and fair trade. We also have other top brands like Chocolove, Green and Black’s Organic, Dagoba, Newman’s Own, and Endangered Species.  Endangered Species chocolate is protecting diversity of life on our planet and promoting true global change with each chocolate bar.  They donate 10% of net profits to organizations that support species conservation, habitat preservation and humanitarian efforts. While you might not increase your memory overnight eating our organic chocolates, at least you will be happy doing so.

 

 Leave a Comment


 
3
NOV

What to Eat to Beat High Blood Sugar Levels

Filed Under: Health Concerns & Ailments,Nutrition at 3:17 pm | By: Jessica Justh, Senior Editor

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What you eat can help control your diabetes and keep your blood sugar under control. Next time you’re at the grocery store, start stocking up on the following heart healthy foods:

It’s important to get your daily dose of friendly fats.  Monounsaturated fats lower the risk of diabetes. These foods include applesavocado and nuts.

Taste the rainbow and improve your insulin sensitivity with nutrients found in colorful plants, especially in vegetables and fruits called anthrocyanins. Load up your cart with sweet, delicious blueberriesraspberries and blackberries.

Fill up on fiber. Roughage has been shown to slow the release of glucose into the body. You want to aim for 20-30 grams per day from fresh vegetables (think broccoli,artichokes and peas) and legumes, like beans and lentils.

Carb quality counts. Stay away from refined starches and stick to complex carbs that metabolize slower, such as whole grains and brown rice.

 

Also, keep in mind these healthy living tips:

Drink 64 ounces of water a day.

Catch more than six hours of sleep each night.

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day.

Get at least 30 minutes of exercise a day.

 

 

 

 Leave a Comment


 
24
OCT

A Guide to Natural Sweeteners

Filed Under: Health Foods,Nutrition at 8:00 am | By: Jessica Justh, Senior Editor

 

Most of us know that sugar is bad for us, but sometimes we just can’t help but succumb to our sweet tooth. Not only is it OK to treat yourself every now and then, you can still make smart choices when doing so. Check out the following list for some natural sugar alternatives, as well as a few ingredients you should always try to avoid.

Look For:

Maple Syrup – This natural sweetener is made using a two-step process. While here are several grades commonly found in most food stores, Grade B is the darkest and has the strongest maple flavor.

Raw, Local Honey – Packed with amazing health benefits, this natural sweetener easily trumps refined table sugar. Plus, honey has immune strengthening properties, as well!

Stevia  – A plant-derived herb that has been used around the world for thousands of years. Keep in mind that stevia is 30 times sweeter than sugar, so tread lightly when substituting in baked goods.

Black Strap Molasses – A strong flavored, sugarcane sweetener full of vitamins and minerals. Use a small amount of black strap molasses when replacing with sugar in recipes.

Xylitiol/ ErythritolThese are common sugar alcohols that have few calories and little aftertaste. Xylitol and Erythritol do not raise blood sugar but may cause digestion issues when over consumed.

Steer Clear Of:

Stay away from products that contain the ingredients below, and remember that, as always (even when indulging!), moderation is key.

Agave

Refined White Sugar Cane

Aspartame

HFCS

Sucralose

 2 Comments, latest by Jessica Justh, Senior Editor


 
21
OCT

Benefits of Pumpkin Seeds

Filed Under: Nutrition,Supplements at 8:00 am | By: Jeremy Michael, Contributing Author

 

Fall is the time for carving pumpkins and making Jack-O-Lanterns to illuminate your front steps.  You’ve just finished cutting open the top of your pumpkin. The newspaper has been laid out on the table; a trash can next to you and all of your carving accessories handy. As you begin to reach into the pumpkin to scoop out the insides, you might be considering whether or not to get rid of all of its contents. What if I told you those seeds on the inside may actually have some healthy properties? Today we are going to look at some of those benefits.

Cucurbita pepo more, commonly known as pumpkin, contains many physiologic health benefits. The majority of its salubrious assets come from the seeds and include anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, diuretic, and anthelmintic properties. Besides having actual physiologic benefits, pumpkin seeds are also very nutritious. One-quarter cup of pumpkin seeds contains nearly half the recommended daily amount of magnesium. Pumpkins seeds are also full of zinc, fiber and healthy fats like ALA, which together all play a key role in supporting your body.

Pumpkin seeds’ anti-inflammatory properties make it useful for inflamed, boggy, irritated prostates as seen in Benign Prostatic Hypertrophy (BPH).  In a randomized double blind study, it was found that pumpkin significantly improved urinary flow, micturition time, residual urine, as well as frequency of micturition.  Another study showed that a combination of pumpkin seed oil and saw palmetto were both clinically safe and effective as complementary treatments for BPH.

In addition to its benefits for BPH, pumpkin seed oil has also been researched for its role in preventing calcium oxalate kidney stones. Two studies performed in Thailand looked at pumpkin seeds snacks and their role in preventing kidney stones in children with a high risk for developing them. Research found that pumpkin seeds increased the level of inhibitors of crystal formation in the urine suggesting a preventive effect, but did not look at the actual reduction in stone formation.

This fall don’t just get rid of all of the “guts” of your pumpkin. Clean and wash off the pumpkin seeds, add a small amount of salt and bake for not only a delicious, but also nutritious snack.

 Leave a Comment


 
14
OCT

Forget the Franken-Candy for Halloween

Filed Under: Food Politics,Nutrition at 8:00 am | By: Jeremy Michael, Contributing Author

 

 

Boo! Didn’t mean to scare you, but now that summer is over Halloween isn’t too far away.  The temperatures are dropping and pumpkins are popping up everywhere. This Halloween don’t be just the coolest house in the neighborhood, be the healthiest. LuckyVitamin has a great selection of candy made with organic, non-GMO ingredients to help you stand out from the rest of the houses on the block.

Many of the candy ingredients on the market are made with artificial dyes, food coloring agents, artificial flavors and other ingredients that can throw off your children’s nervous system. According to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), one of these ingredients, partially hydrogenated vegetable oil, is no longer “generally recognized as safe” and should eventually be phased out of the production of food. A great health benefit to our all-natural sweet treats is that they do not contain hydrogenated oils.

Chocolate is a staple of Halloween. LuckyVitamin carries top selling delicious treats like Chocolove Mini Organic Chocolate Bars that come in flavors like Dark Chocolate, Raspberry, Orange Peel, and Toffee Almond.  Another delectable treat you will find is the Lara Bar Jocalat Chocolate Mint Bar. This yummy bar is non-GMO, organic, and free of artificial calories, dairy, gluten, and preservatives.

Are you worried about not having Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups in your candy bucket this fall? Don’t worry; LuckyVitamin has you covered with Justin’s Nut Butter Peanut Butter Cups. Not only is this enjoyable candy organic, it is also free of dairy and gluten.  Now it wouldn’t be Halloween without M&M’s; however, a tasty and healthier alternative is SunSpire Sun Drop Original Chocolate Candies.  These candies are organic, vegetarian, and free of preservatives, trans fat, and artificial flavors. On top of all that they are also a quality fare trade product.

Other great alternatives to satisfying that sweet tooth with include Yummy Earth Root beer candy drops, Surf Sweets All Natural Gummy Bears , Yummy Earth’s Organic Gummy Bears and All Natural Lollipops. This Halloween don’t be frightened by the candy on you super market shelves; shop LuckyVitamin for all natural and organic candy to hand out to those witches, goblins, princesses and super heroes.

 Leave a Comment


 
 
Shop LuckyVitamin.com »      New Products |  Departments |  Brands |  Ailments |  Bestsellers |  On Sale
© 2008 LuckyVitamin.com. All Rights Reserved.