Filed Under: Health Foods,Teas at 12:01 am | By: Mauricio Matusiak, Senior Editor
You certainly have heard of people cooking with wine and beer but how about cooking with tea? A very interesting cooking ingredient, tea contains distinctive flavors which can add herbal, sweet, and even smoky touches to your cooking repertoire. Let’s check out 5 ways to use tea when cooking.
Use tea as an herb. Tea leaves are essentially herbs and can be added directly to dishes while cooking. A mixture of green teas used as a seasoning works perfectly for stir-fries, particularly when added to vegetable dishes since it tastes similar to dark, leafy greens. Plus, you can use tea leaves like dried herbs such as oregano or thyme as well as add them to sauces and glazes.
How about cooking with tea instead of water? An easy way to add a little more flavor to your meals, just brew the tea and let it cool to room temperature. Then, use it in any recipe that calls for water. It works great to cook whole grains such as rice and quinoa and it can also be used for soups.
If you make your own pasta, here’s a great idea. Mix green tea powder to pasta dough, adding color and a delicious herbaceous flavor to your homemade pasta. Plus, rather than buying specialty noodles, just cook pasta in green tea to make a homemade green tea noodles.
4. Spice Rub
Tea leaves can also create a great spice rub. Grind tea leaves and add them to your favorite herbs and spices to use in a rub for tofu, tempeh or seitan. Choose teas such as earl gray and Darjeeling which go well with savory foods. A tea spice rub can be as simple as mixing ½ tsp. salt and ¼ tsp. black pepper with 2 Tbs. of ground tea
Tea leaves make a great herb butter and it’s pretty easy to make. Just let unsalted butter sit at room temperature until very soft and then mix it with tea leaves, either whole or ground. Store in the refrigerator and use it for cooking or on freshly baked bread and biscuits.
Omega-3 supplements are very beneficial to your health but some people may find a little complicated to understand all the abbreviations used on the products’ ingredients list. EPA, DHA and ALA. What do they stand for? Which food sources can you get them from? How much do you actually need? Let’s have a quick look at DHA, EPA and ALA.
One of the two main types of long-chain omega-3 fatty acids, Eicosapentaenoic Acid, or EPA, is found in fatty, cold-water fish such as mackerel, sardines, salmon, herring, halibut, trout, anchovies, and tuna. There is no recommended standard dose of EPA’s but health organizations recommend a daily dose of 250 to 500 milligrams (mg) for healthy adults.
The other main type of omega-3 is Docosahexaenoic Acid, popular known as DHA. Plentiful in fish and shellfish, DHA is also found in algae. There is no set recommended standard dose of DHA as well but just like EPA’s a daily dose of 250 to 500 milligrams (mg) of DHA should be sufficient for healthy adults.
EPA to DHA Ratios
It’s important to check for the ratios of EPA and DHA since there is no standard daily dose set. According to the American Heart Association, a common ratio which can be used is 180 milligrams of EPA to 120 milligrams of DHA but some reports show that ratios of 2:1 or 1:2 EPA to DHA may be equally beneficial since both compounds seem to work together.
Alpha-linolenic Acids are short-chain omega-3 fatty acids found in plants, such as flax seeds, chia seeds, as well as oils such as flax oil and hemp oil. ALA omega-3 fatty acids have less potent health benefits than EPA and DHA and for the body to truly benefit from these fats, they must be converted into long-chain EFAs such as EPA and DHA first. There is no established dose of alpha-lipoic acid recommended, but studies have concluded that the use of 600 milligrams daily can provide health benefits.
Filed Under: Recipes at 9:00 am | By: Leah Hazuda, Contributing Editor
The perfect combination of sweet and crunchy, this festive candy is full of heart-healthy dried cranberries and antioxidant-rich almonds. Unsweetened coconut saves a few calories while adding delicious flavor and a bit of fiber. If these toppings aren’t your favorite – customize it to fit you!
Preheat the oven to 325°. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, and set aside.
Spread the sliced almonds and the unsweetened coconut in an even layer on the baking sheet. Toast 5–8 minutes or until coconut just begins to brown. Remove baking sheet from the oven, and let cool.
In a large bowl, combine almonds, coconut, rice cereal, and dried cranberries. Reserve about 1/4 cup of the mixture, and set aside.
Place chopped white chocolate and 2 teaspoons vegetable oil in a large heatproof bowl, and set over a medium saucepan of simmering water. Stir with a spatula until the chocolate is completely melted.
Remove the chocolate from heat, and fold in the almond mixture. Spread mixture evenly on parchment-lined baking sheet. Sprinkle on the reserved 1/4 cup topping. Refrigerate for about 30 minutes or until the chocolate has completely set. Break the bark into small pieces, and serve.
Unfortunately, many people have a difficult time sleeping well these days. Stress, busy schedules, and hectic lifestyles often lead to difficulties falling asleep and sleeping throughout the night. Evening rituals or bedtime routines can be an excellent way to improve your overall sleep. The purpose of these activities is to relax and de-stress your mind and body, helping you calm down, sleep longer and better. Let’s look at 6 things you can add to your evening ritual for better sleep.
1. Magnesium Supplement
Magnesium is well known for its ability to improve sleep and reduce insomnia. Studies have suggested that this mineral helps decrease cortisol, also known as the stress hormone, which keeps you up at night. Magnesium also promotes muscle relaxation and can help mood disorders.
2. Herbal Teas
Some herbal teas contain relaxing agents that can help sooth your nerves, improve blood flow, and make you feel more relaxed. The best herbal teas for sleep include chamomile, valerian, lavender, peppermint, and passion flower.
3. Taking a Bath
A hot bath is one of the best ways to promote relaxation. Immersion in warm/hot water is known to be extremely therapeutic and can significantly help relax your mind and soul after a stressful day.
4. Cooler Bedroom
Turn down the thermostat in your bedroom to improve the quality of your sleep. The National Sleep foundation recommends that the room temperature should be kept around 65 degrees in order to keep you cooler and prevent restless nights from feeling too hot.
5. Use an EO Diffuser
An essential oil diffuser can help improve your sleep as these essential oils have soothing and relaxing aroma therapeutic properties. Look for valerian, lavender, chamomile, cedarwood, vetiver, frankincense, geranium, patchouli, ylang, and bergamot.
Stretching is another great way to promote relaxation and improve overall sleep. Stretch for a few minutes to reduce stiff joints and cramping muscles as well as to prevent injuries and reduce built-up tension and stress.
Filed Under: Recipes at 10:48 am | By: Madeline Reiss
Sticking to a paleo diet (or any diet for that matter!) during the holidays is a true test of will. Watching everyone else indulge in sweet, forbidden treats can really dampen your holiday spirit. Luckily, there are ways to participate in holiday fun without sacrificing your healthy lifestyle! These paleo gingerbread cookies are not only fun to bake, but easy to make in large batches for parties and family gatherings.
Give these gingerbread cookies a try and let us know what you think!
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a mixing bowl, whisk together the almond flour, tapioca starch, ginger, cinnamon, cloves and salt.
Add the coconut oil, maple syrup, molasses and vanilla to the dry ingredients and beat with an electric mixer until a thick dough forms. You may need to mix for a minute or two until the dough comes together. Don’t worry about over-mixing the dough, since it contains no gluten you can’t over-develop it and create tough cookies!
Place the dough between two sheets of parchment paper. Roll out the dough to a 1/4″ thickness. Refrigerate dough for 30 minutes.
Peel the top layer of parchment off of the sheet of dough. Cut out gingerbread man shapes with a cookie cutter and place the gingerbread men 1″ apart on the prepared baking sheet.
Bake cookies for 10-12 minutes. Let cool on the pan and store in an airtight container.
We’re right in the thick of Fall! Soon we’ll find ourselves spending more time inside and these blends are perfect for bringing in those comfy fall feelings. Each blend is spicy, sweet, refreshing and instantly puts you in a good mood—filling your home with the good vibes of the season! Just add the oils to your diffuser and you’re good to go.
Whether you’re entertaining or having a cozy night in, give these blends a try and let us know what you think!
Winter is coming and it’s going to bring along some seriously chilly days and nights. Though the worst of the season is still ahead, now is an excellent chance for you to start preparing. Many homeowners are aware that consuming too much energy in the winter to stay warm can be both expensive and bad for the planet. To help you through the season, here are some fun tips on saving energy and staying nice and toasty.
Homes are not always as well-insulated as owners might like to believe. Air leaks around windows and doorframes can cause your energy bills to skyrocket, as your HVAC system will have to work harder to maintain the right temperature. Ignoring a draft could easily cause your home to waste far more energy than you’d like. Contact professionals and learn about energy-efficient window options to improve your home’s ability to handle the chill of winter.
Thermogenesis is the scientific process surrounding a living organism’s ability to produce heat. Eating food that can help to enhance your own thermogenesis may allow you to stay warm without cranking the heat. Ginger, lentils, and coconut oil all help in this regard. It is important to remember that weight is a big factor in your body’s thermogenesis. Depending on your weight, specific foods might not have any effect on changing the way your body produces heat.
3. Spice Life
The way you season your food can also have a dramatic impact on how warm your body feels in the cold. Putting cumin on meals has been shown to raise body temperature and make an individual feel nice and cozy. While cumin is a top choice for many, spices like cinnamon and turmeric are also excellent candidates for the task. Several academic studies suggest using these spices can aid in diet or weight loss efforts, especially when mixed with protein-rich foods.
4. Temperature Regulation
What food you eat can assist your body to best regulate its internal temperature. Eating foods rich in magnesium, like bananas, has been shown to create a feeling of warmth in the body. Many foods that contain higher levels of magnesium are easy to carry around with you. By munching on pumpkin seeds or almonds throughout the course of the day, you are giving your body the opportunity to warm up no matter where the day takes you. While at home, eating magnesium-rich food can also help you to save on heating costs.
5. Metabolic Boost
When your metabolism is moving, your body is heated. Boosting your metabolism is easy when you drink coffee on a regular basis. A cup of coffee each morning can keep you warm simply through the power of caffeine. It does not matter that the coffee is hot or iced, so feel free to indulge in your favorite caffeinated drinks regardless of temperature.
Joe Palinsky is a full-time writer and theater professional in Philadelphia. He predominantly works with ensemble-based Found Theater Company, where his writing has been featured in numerous productions. Though primarily a ghostwriter, his work has been published in the now-defunct Spirit News and as a guest on Found Theater’s blog.
Collagen has been a top-selling product for skin health for many years but did you know that this powerful supplement offers many other health benefits? Let’s look at 4 ways collagen can improve your health.
1. Joint Health
Collagen is a major component in forming your body’s tendons, ligaments, muscles and cartilage. As you age, your body is less able to manufacture a sufficient amount of collagen and supplements can help maintain your body’s repair process. Collagen contains the amino acids glycine and proline, which help repair tissue, lessen inflammation, and provide relief from joint pain. Collagen products are used for treating osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and osteoporosis.
2. Weight Loss
Collagen supplements can help in weight loss. A great source of protein, collagen provides 18 grams of protein per 2 scoops. Studies have shown that collagen peptides consumed at breakfast are 40% more satiating than other proteins such as whey or soy, and may lead to a 20% reduction of food intake at lunch.
Collagen supplements can help improve digestion by repairing the mucous lining. Collagen soothes and heals the digestive tract and helps break down the protein and fat from foods, making them easier for the body to digest.
4. Athletic Performance
As mentioned above, the amino acids glycine and proline help repair tissue and lessen inflammation. Consequently, supplementation with collagen peptides shortens recovery after exercise and helps with sports related injuries on muscle, tendons, and ligaments.
Filed Under: Homeopathy at 10:19 am | By: Madeline Reiss
Homeopathy has been used for more than 200 years, building a remarkable safety record and generating a great body of knowledge. Today, homeopathy is used by millions of patients in more than 65 countries and recommended by more than 400,000 healthcare providers. Since the passing of the federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act in 1938, homeopathic medicines have been regulated as drugs by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
It’s not an easy task but if you like to take on a challenge, here’s a great one: becoming a morning workout person.
Many people simply cannot exercise in the early hours of the day for different reasons. Some people need a slow start. Some people only start functioning after a cup of coffee or tea. Some people simply don’t have the energy to work out in the morning hours. Plus, the majority of people can’t seem to fit a workout into their busy schedules. Work, school, kids—everything else seems to take up our morning time, but there’s a way to make it happen!
You can wake up earlier, get your workout done and then start your day as you normally would.
Waking up an hour earlier than your usual time may be sufficient, but as we know, this is easier said than done and takes some habit-forming skills. Of course, going to bed earlier is necessary to become a morning person as you still need to sleep enough hours and wake up rested. Making this a habit may actually bring a lot of health benefits for you.
Eating properly is essential. You may choose to eat a light breakfast or a nutritional bar before your workout and then complement with a healthy breakfast once your activity is done. You can also eat a full healthy breakfast and then workout, of course, this option may only work you have enough time in the morning. In both cases, eating well and exercising in the morning hours are two important factors that can help regulate your eating habits, and in some cases, making you less hungry for the rest of day.
Since waking up early and starting a new habit are two, not-so-easy things to do, you can start slowly, exercising just 10-15 minutes, two or three times a week. Once your mind and your body are used to the new workout time, bump up to 20-30 minutes and more frequently if you wish. This way, it may be easier for you to get that great feeling after getting your exercise done in the morning hours without feeling tired during the day.
Remember that it may take time and you may feel like quitting but don’t give up. Once you have established yourself as a morning workout person, you will feel energized every day.
Filed Under: Homeopathy at 12:01 am | By: Mauricio Matusiak, Senior Editor
Homeopathy has been growing in the past years for a variety of different reasons. Known to help stimulate the body’s own mechanism, homeopathy is an inexpensive remedy that can help people who are in pain and may be dependent on drugs that may cause more problems than the original issues. Let’s look a 6 good reasons to try homeopathy.
1. No Side Effects
Homeopathy is a treatment without side effects, making it easier for anyone to try and use it on a regular basis. Plus, there is no risk of addiction to homeopathic medicines, a common issue with regular drugs.
2. Effective Treatment
Homeopathy works. This effective treatment can help minimize your health problems permanently and, as long as the remedy is chosen and used correctly, it will provide quick relief, acting within minutes or hours.
Homeopathic remedies are much more affordable than conventional ones. These inexpensive products are below the $20 range per bottle and can be as low as $2.
4. Works for Everyone
Homeopathy can help adults, children, infants, the elderly, and even pets and livestock. This simple treatment may offer anyone of any age the solution for different health problems that conventional medicine has no cure.
5. FDA Approved
Homeopathy is approved by the FDA, Food and Drug Administration. Unlike conventional drugs, there are no reports of homeopathic remedies which have been forced off the market due to consumers having adverse reactions.
6. Worldwide Data
With over 200 years of data to support its claims, homeopathy has been used throughout the world in many countries in Europe and South America as well as some countries in Asia.
THE VEGIDAY™ MOVEMENT: Making the right choice – for you, and for the planet
Everyone on our marvelous planet deserves to be well nourished. But as Earth’s population continues to grow, how will we feed everyone? The simplest – and most sustainable – route to nourishing the world is to produce food that uses less of the planet’s resources. A seed only requires water, some nutrients from the soil, and a whole lot of energy from the sun to become a nourishing plant that can sustain life. Producing animal protein uses far more resources to deliver an equivalent amount of protein. When we choose to replace animal protein with plant protein, even for just one meal a day, we save enough resources to give five more people a serving of plant protein. Plant protein is also better for our health, and better for the environment.
Plant protein is better for the planet
Large-scale industrial animal farming has a negative impact on the planet.
The livestock industry is responsible for approximately 15% of global carbon emissions
The average meat-eater is responsible for almost twice as much global warming as the average vegetarian
By reducing your meat intake by half, you could cut your carbon footprint by more than 35%
Natural Factors Raw Organic Plant-Based Protein
Doing the planet a favor has never tasted so good! These deliciously nutritious protein powders are 100% certified organic and contain a wholesome blend of seven raw, non-GMO plant proteins: pea, pumpkin, sacha inchi, quinoa, chia, spirulina, and chlorella. By combining various plant proteins, the full spectrum of essential amino acids, including the important branched-chain amino acids, are included. These easy-to-digest proteins are made to the highest quality standards.
Raw and certified organic
20 g of vegan protein per serving
Provides all the essential amino acids
Certified gluten-free and non-GMO
Easy-to-digest, soy free, and dairy free
Naturally sweetened and flavored
Supports healthy weight management
Helps build and maintain lean muscle mass
These delicious plant-based protein powders come in French Vanilla and Decadent Chocolate flavors, as well as an Unflavored option. Just mix one scoop with water, juice, or your preferred non-dairy beverage. For added variety try blending in fruit, berries, ginger, and greens or other powdered superfoods. Or just add a scoop to your favorite shake or smoothie!
Korean skincare (K-Beauty) products are populating beauty aisles left and right. Characterized by their eye-catching colors and whimsical packaging, K-Beauty products utilize a modern “nature meets technology” formula and thorough 10-step regimen that’s practiced morning and night. Pick up a face mask and you might see ingredients like snail mucin (yes, that’s snail slime), pig collagen and bee venom—all said to boost cell regeneration, calm inflammation and leave you with a dewy glow.
The philosophy behind the K-Beauty regimen is that an individual’s complexion requires a customized routine that addresses their unique skin issues, such as acne, dry skin, premature aging and so on. While 10-steps sound exhausting, keep in mind several steps are only practiced twice a week and a few products are used more than once.
Ready to become an expert on Korean skincare? Buckle up, because we’re taking you through the complete, 10-part system.
The 10-Step Korean Beauty Routine
Step 1: Remove Makeup & Pre-Cleanse…
The first half of the popular K-Beauty “double cleanse” is removing your makeup with an oil-based makeup remover. Massage all over your face to break up dirt and bacteria, adding a splash of lukewarm water to help spread the product, then rinse!
Step 2: …And Cleanse Again
A crucial step in the K-Beauty regime is proper, thorough cleansing. This helps activate a radiant, acne-free complexion! Using a mild, water-based cleanser, rinse away impurities leftover from the pre-cleansing step with soft, circular motions.
Step 3: Exfoliate
Soft, supple skin means no dead skin cells collecting on the surface, so slough it off and don’t neglect your lips! A big note on this step: you don’t need to scrub your entire face every night. Try this step twice a week, as exfoliated skin allows your skin to effectively absorb the rest of the products.
Step 4: Toner
K-Beauty toners are not your typical, overdrying, alcohol-filled formulas. Their goal is to hydrate and clarify, balancing your skin’s pH levels and prepping the surface for better absorption of other products.
Step 5: Face Mist
Regarded as the most important step of K-Beauty skincare, an essence is a kind of toner-serum hybrid made for aiding skin repair, brightening your complexion and assisting with cell turnover. Apply it to freshly toned skin and pat it in.
Step 6: Serum
Think of a serum as a concentrated essence that directly treats the issues unique to your skin type. Different serums target large pores, wrinkles, hyperpigmentation, etc. This is what makes the 10-step routine super customizable to your own skincare needs.
Step 7: Sheet Mask
While essences are the most important step, sheet masks are definitely the most popular and recognizable step of the K-beauty routine. Apply and let the mask sit for 15-20 minutes, once or twice a week for best results. If you’ve been wanting to add a mindfulness practice to your daily routine, this is the perfect time for some meditation!
Step 8: Eye Cream
K-Beauty recognizes that the skin surrounding your eyes is different from the rest of your face—soft delicate and fragile. An eye cream provides this special area with the hydration and protection it needs to stay bright and free of dark circles. Always tap to apply & never rub!
Step 9: Moisturizer
If dewy, glowing skin is the ultimate goal, it’s paramount to find a moisturizer that suits your skin type. K-Beauty moisturizers span the entire realm of face care formulations, from creams to gels to lotions, all working to seal in the hydration that will keep your skin firm and fine-lines in check.
Step 10: SPF Or Sleep Cream
If you’re sealing off your AM routine, the K-Beauty regimen always encourages an SPF of 30+, even if you’re only going outside for a few minutes. It’s the easiest and most effective way to prevent premature aging and skin cancer. If you’re practicing your nighttime routine, smooth on a second layer of moisturizer with a sleep cream. This step locks in moisture and keeps your skin hydrated through the night.
Whew! Though it seems like you’ll need a spreadsheet to keep all these products organized, many people are raving about the 10-step K-Beauty routine. Will you be giving it a try? Let us know your thoughts!