Category Archives: Health and Fitness

Important Tips to Purchase the Right Exercise Equipment

There are a lot of resources that can help you purchase the right fitness equipment for your home gym. However, with so many choices in the market, purchasing the right tools can be a daunting task for many. Whether you are referring to television commercials magazines or online websites, there are some things to keep in mind before you can take the right exercise equipment in Charlotte NC back home. And because such equipment is a one-time investment for long-term fitness purposes, making a wise decision becomes extremely important.

When you follow certain parameters to judge the usability and efficiency of the various types of exercise equipment in Charlotte NC, you are in a better position with making good decisions for the same. Building a home gym is not that easy as it sounds. Getting the right exercise tools and equipment for your home gym depends on a lot of factors and specific requirements which only you would understand, and you have to convey the same to your dealer who can help you further with the purchasing process.

Here are some tips that can help you purchase the right type of exercise equipment in Charlotte NC for your home gym:

Define your fitness goals

The first thing that will help you purchase the right equipment is by knowing the purpose of your fitness training. You can purchase fitness gear for various purposes like muscle strengthening, physical well-being, weight loss, calorie burn, etc. So your purchase highly depends on the results you wish to achieve through your workouts and what exactly your fitness objectives are. Each tool is designed for a different fitness purpose, so ensure that you have clearly defined goals to buy the right tool.

Users of the equipment

When you purchase exercise equipment for your home, you need to determine whether you will be the only one using it, or whether the equipment will be shared amongst other members of your family. Especially if there are kids using it, you would prefer tools that are simpler to handle and use. Also, the fitness needs of others will impact your choice of buying the right equipment.

Space availability

The next thing that should be the base of your choice is the amount of space that is available at your home. Some exercise machines are too large and some are just about the right fit that occupies a smaller space. Depending on the amount of space that is available to create a home gym, you need to purchase equipment varying in different sizes and styles. For example, if you have smaller space, then purchasing a treadmill might not be the best option.

Your budget limit

Set your budget limit. You do not want to spend excessively or too less on purchasing the required fitness equipment for your home. Keep a reasonable bracket for your budget and try to purchase your desired exercise tools and machines that fit in the limit. If your budget is restricted with a small cap, then purchasing costly machines such as treadmills might not be a good option, but you might find other strengthening tools that would fit in the price limit you have set.

Research on the equipment

Researching is one of the main tasks of this entire process of selecting the right equipment. You can go on the web and look up for various online resources that give you an idea of the uses, price, conditions and availability of various fitness gears.  Check which tools fit your requirements and budget, and make a list of all the tools that are most likely to be purchased by you.

Test the equipment

After you visit your dealer, and once you have been guided through all the choices that are available as per your requirements, ensure that you test the equipment to judge its performance and functionality. Do not purchase any exercise tool without testing the same and determine how easy or difficult it is for you to handle and manage the equipment. You need to do this to also determine whether the equipment is in a perfect and safe working condition to avoid any casualties in future.

Know how to use the equipment

At the end of it all, you will always have agents to guide you through the usage instructions of the equipment you want to purchase. Do not buy anything until and unless you know that you will be able to use it. Ask the agent to either give you a demonstration on the equipment usage or provide you with an instruction manual which you can refer to anytime.

These essential tips will promisingly help you purchase the desired exercise equipment Charlotte NC. To make things simpler, contact a reputed dealer that provides safe, high standard and affordable exercise equipment in Charlotte, NC. Partner with the right equipment providers so that you make good purchases and also get all the service and facilities that are required to maintain your exercise tools in a perfect condition.

Healthy Eating Tips for Your Child

Children have a large appetite in their growing years and require a lot of energy as they are involved in a lot of physical activity. Nearly all the essential nutrients are obtained from dietary sources.

Nutrition Guide for Children

The required nutrients and their sources are as follows:

Carbohydrates: They provide energy required by our body to perform any physical activity. Staples like grains and cereals, starchy vegetables like potatoes, corn, beans, bread, pasta, etc., contain high amount of carbohydrates. They should be included in the meals every day, as our body constantly requires energy.

Proteins: Proteins build and repair body tissues, and also regulate body processes. They are also known as building blocks of the body. As they are the most essential nutrients, one must have a regular intake of protein-rich foods like milk, cheese, tofu, poultry, meat, beans, lentils, peanut butter, nuts, and seeds.

Vitamins: Every vitamin has a specific function. Deficiency of any of the vitamins can cause serious disorders. Therefore, vitamins-rich foods must be regularly consumed. Spinach, carrots, broccoli, pumpkin, apricots, peaches, etc., contain vitamin A. Vitamin B is found in whole grains, bread, cereals, poultry, meat, and eggs. Citrus fruits, dark green vegetables, mangoes, etc., contain vitamin C. Milk, eggs, fish, margarine, and sunlight provide vitamin D. Vegetable oils, butter, egg yolk, milk contain vitamin E, whereas, green, leafy vegetables, and milk contain vitamin K.

Minerals: Calcium is an important mineral required by our body for normal growth and development. Along with it, other minerals like potassium, iron, magnesium, and sodium are also needed in lesser quantity. Most of the minerals are found in milk, vegetables, and poultry.

The Food Pyramid

The food pyramid concept is suggested by most of the nutritionists. (Take a look at the picture given alongside) It gives us an insight about the amount of various foods to be consumed for a healthy life. The pyramid is divided into four parts horizontally. Grains and cereals are placed at the lowermost part (largest part) of the pyramid. Hence, they must be consumed in a large quantity. The second part consists of vegetables and fruits which must be consumed in equal amount. The third part contains dairy products and proteins, also to be taken in considerable amounts. The topmost (smallest) part consists of foods containing oils, fats, and sugars. They must be consumed minimally.

Tips on Healthy Eating

☞ Parents must schedule family meals regularly at a specific time. This will help children learn to have complete meals, rather than having quick mini-snacks. As it is observed from the above nutrition guide that vegetables, fruits, grains, and milk contain nearly all the required nutrients, they must be included in meals regularly.

☞ Parents should make a variety of healthy options available for children to choose from. They should also encourage children to try new foodstuffs. Do not provide sweets, candy, popcorn, and chips during meals. Also, aerated or sweet drinks must be completely avoided during meal times.

☞ It is a universal complaint that children do not opt for vegetables and fruits. Parents must make vegetable dishes look attractive and tempting. They can include more vegetables in sandwiches or even make vegetable soups, pies, etc. Children should be encouraged to eat whole fruits instead of fruit juices. Meat dishes should be prepared on alternate days. Parents can also opt for low-fat food alternatives.

☞ Parents must set a good example before their children by themselves opting for healthy meals. Children usually imitate their parents. If parents try different foodstuffs, children will be eager to follow. Parents can involve children in planning and preparation of meals. They can be encouraged to provide ideas about the daily menu. They can be involved in buying foodstuffs for meals or their lunch boxes. This will make them feel concerned and connected.

☞ The most important thing that parents should keep in mind, is not to force their children to eat. Forcing anything will make children dislike the food altogether. Instead, help them realize the nutritional value of foodstuffs. Parents should let children decide when they are full, and not force them to eat.

☞ Also, parents must not completely deprive children of sweets and junk food. This will only make them crave for more. Just cut down the amounts gradually, and make it ‘once-in-a-while’ dish. Healthy foods like salads, soups, veggies, etc., should be chosen when eating out. Parents must try to avoid processed and junk food for children.

Lastly, as a quick tip, make meal time a tension-free and conflict-free zone. Children will definitely look forward to healthy meals, and that will ease your worries.

How to Combat Food Waste at Home

Lucky are those who don’t know what it is like to go without food. It is up to these lucky ones who are provided with more than sufficient reserves, to minimize food wastage which has been a global problem for many years now. Most of the wasted food ends up in landfills, where it is processed to form methane―a gas which affects the climate in an adverse way. Not to mention the number of people who go to bed on an empty stomach due to such wastage.

Food is wasted in large quantities at different levels; edible crops are rejected for not being visually appealing, a lot of produce is lost in transportation, consumers buy bulk food, consumption is less than what is cooked. All these factors contribute towards food wastage. There are a number of ways in which you can avoid wasting food. Some of them have been mentioned in this Buzzle article. Read, learn, and do your bit.

Shop Wisely

Plan

Make a weekly plan that enlists the meals you will be cooking on each day of the week. This way, you know what to buy and how much to buy.

Buy only what you need

Based on your plan for the week, make a shopping list, and then go food and grocery shopping. Stick to what you need to buy, and refrain from impulsive, off-the-shelf shopping.

Avoid getting trapped by promotional sales

Stay away from promotional offers and sales. You end up buying stuff that you don’t really need, causing unnecessary wastage.

Buy in parts, instead of whole

If you wish to try out a new recipe, and the recipe needs just four slices of pineapple, buy fresh and loose produce, instead of buying a whole can of processed pineapples. Make bulk purchases when it comes to grains, nuts, and spices.

Don’t Waste

Prioritize

Choose to cook those items first that will perish faster if stored for too long.

Don’t prepare more than what is required

Storing food for later use is okay, but try not to cook or prepare elaborate meals when you are sure about how much will be really sufficient.

Carry a doggie bag

When eating out at restaurants, feel free to ask the waiters to pack the leftovers that you can carry home. Reheat the next day and eat it. This avoids wastage to a great extent.

Use what is bought
No matter how perfectly you try to follow your weekly meal plans, emergencies are bound to happen. You might be invited to a dinner, or might decide to eat out. But make sure you utilize whatever you bought before it gets spoiled, and you don’t have to throw it away.

Remember what’s in your pantry

An uncluttered and clean kitchen is not only necessary for hygienic reasons, it also lets you keep a check on your store. Regularly check your cupboards and pantry, so that you are aware about the available ingredients or the ones you need to refill.

Take/Serve smaller portions

At the dinner table, whether in a restaurant, or at home, fill your plate with smaller servings. If needed, you can always ask for a second helping. This is good for restricting waste as well as the waist.

Store Appropriately

Keep it fresh

Educate yourself on the ways to store food in a way that will keep them fresh for the longest duration. For example, certain fruits need to be stored inside the fridge, while certain vegetables should never be washed before storing them in the fridge.

Learn to read labels

These labels include information about manufacturing date, best-by date, use-by date, sell-by date, and its expiry date. The sell-by date is the last date on which you should ideally buy that product, but can use it until a week later too. The best-by date is the day the food reaches its peak quality, and should preferably not be used after that.

Maintain the temperature of the refrigerator

Warm storage tends to spoil food faster, and hence, is not recommended, unless a particular food item demands it. To ensure freshness and longevity, store food in a refrigerator which is set at a temperature of 1 to 5 °C.

Freeze

Freezing food items stabilizes the oil present in them, thus, preventing them from getting spoiled. Maintain the temperature of the freezer at -18 °C.

Preserve and Share

Reuse leftovers

Reheat last night’s pizza slices, and eat them at lunch the next day. Leftover vegetables can be used to toss-up a salad, softer and less fresh fruits can be blended into juices or smoothies, and leftover pasta can be filled into tacos.

Compost scraps

Apart from meat, fish, dairy products, and peels of certain citrus fruits like oranges, limes, and lemons, you can compost food scraps, and use it in your garden. Uncooked vegetables that have gone soggy, soiled fruits, salads, etc., can be used to create compost.

Share your food

Do this not only because you want to avoid throwing away your leftover food, but also because someone out there is starving, and is not privileged enough to have food.
Keep these essential tips in mind, and reduce as much wastage of food as possible. Since it starts at home, do your bit and educate others too. It will eventually add up to the betterment of the condition that affects the world when it comes to minimizing food wastage.

Finding Body Building Supplements

Did you know that strengthening the body alone can not give you the desired body shape and strength? Thank you for bodybuilding supplements that actually work to increase the overall effectiveness of the training standard. The market is flooded with all bodybuilding supplements recommended, but you know what works best for you?
Here are some recommended basic body building supplements that can help you achieve the kind of healthy body you have dreamed:

* Multi-Vitamin/Multi-Mineral: You do not know, but for the body to reach its full potential, it must be fed with more vitamins and minerals.That Therefore, it is recommended bodybuilding supplements, because they assist in the production and optimal efficiency improved performance especially when exercising. In fact, they are still considered the most important supplement that bodybuilders and athletes to have.

* Creatine: Perhaps one of body building supplements recommended, no one can match the benefits of creatine. And it is surely too! Indeed, many rely on this supplement because of its biological origin and is present in almost all foods.Athletes and bodybuilding enthusiasts argued that taking creatine, there was a significant increase in their performance while instilling their bodies with unprecedented energy. Of all the supplements recommended weight, hydrate muscle cells are not creatine is so especially during intense exercise. It helps build lean muscle as well.

* L-Glutamine: You might wonder what is the importance of L-glutamine in the body, especially when we are engaged in activities your body building? Most fans may not realize it, but these recommended supplements body building are as important as that others.For, L-glutamine, anti-catabolic supplement works to neutralize the catabolic effects of cortisol induced During the hard and strenuous activities. For bodybuilders, supplement these increases nitrogen retention leads to increased muscle mass.

* HMB (beta-hydroxy beta-methylbutyrate): Why do you think this addition is such a rage that athletes and fitness enthusiasts? On the one hand, HMB reduces tissue damage during intense exercise and activities. As such, a process of restoring the body accelerateed leads to more muscle mass. Also take this addition, you can develop lean body mass and muscle strength.

* Whey protein you’re a bodybuilder, then you should know better than whey is an important supplement to take. Why? During exercise, protein in the body is there depleted.That whey protein comes in. It is an essential amino acid which is a precursor to building bigger muscles. Whey Protein is an essential supplement to increase endurance, strengthen muscles and reduces muscle deterioration.Bodybuilding fairer coverage worthy of the muscles. It’s about staying fit and healthy. The use of these supplements recommended weight, you’re on your way to better health and stronger than you.

Ways to Start Eating Healthy

Eating healthy should be a way of life and not just a whim-fulfilling prophecy. Why is it important to have healthy food? Well, let’s just say that if you care for your health and love your body, it should be a prerequisite to a healthy living plan. A lot depends on the kind of food that we eat. A healthy diet has a direct effect on our weight and general health, and many diseases can also be curbed by sticking to a healthy and balanced diet. However, many people might be confused about what ‘healthy’ is and how to start eating the right way. The following article shall try and answer all these questions and supply you with some pointers on how to go about doing that and stick to it (which is more important).

Easy Ways to Start Eating Healthy

The word healthy usually replicates an image of salads and bland greens, bitter juices, and the like. First of, that is not what healthy is. Healthy, according to me, means something that does not tax our system, it is in fact good for it and helps in maintaining our good health and expending energy throughout. Here are some tips on how to choose healthy food.

General Understanding of Food
There is so much variety of food types available today that many times we are left confused about what to eat. The variety is not necessarily always healthy – there’s processed foods and junk foods mixed with healthy foods and therefore the choice becomes difficult. That is why it is important to know the variety of foods that can harm you. Some of these include processed foods, high sugar foods, added color agents, preservatives and oily foods as opposed to the foods that are good for you – Basic food groups, whole wheat, and natural foods.

This is just a very broad frame of putting things. For things to really fall into place, buy one of those food pyramid or food guide charts or make one if you have the time and interest. These will describe the different food groups and what foods they would include. Now stick this chart up in the kitchen so that you become well aware of what the different foods are. This will make it easier for meal planning and deciding your meals beforehand.

When to Eat What
Great confusion! That’s what it is? Not at all! Just understand this basic concept when planning your meals and you won’t find it an ordeal anymore. Plan your meals such that you include these pointers:

  • Fruit
  • Breakfast (very, very important!)
  • Mid snack
  • Lunch
  • Mid snack
  • Dinner
  • Soup/Salad (Optional)

Start your day with a fruit because that is the most ideal time to have it. It’ll kick start your metabolism. Your system needs that sugar early in the morning and it will convert it into pure energy instead of into bad sugar. Then wait for half an hour before you have your breakfast. Your breakfast should be heavy and contain carbs as a rule! Do not compromise on this cause this is the one time in the day that your digestive system is in full force, then as the day progresses, it becomes less and less active.

For lunch, make sure to include all the basic food groups (refer to the chart) and concentrate on whole wheat and green leafy vegetables. Avoid extra spicy and oily foods.

Your dinner should preferably be light and if possible, try and have your dinner before 7pm. After 7, the digestive system becomes sluggish and will not be able to break down and digest the food effectively. If you eat heavy meals after 7, you are taxing your digestive system. If this happens, then you will begin to see results in the way of bloating and weight gain. Dinner should contain only one main dish like chicken or fish instead of 4-5 choices. Most preferably have these grilled or roasted instead of fried and with heavy sauces. If you have your dinner by 7 but you only sleep by 11-11.30, then you’ll probably feel hungry again at 9-9.30 pm. That is when you have a soup (vegetable or mushroom not ‘cream’) or a salad. This will not tax your system. Just make sure that you have eaten at least two hours before sleeping, or else the food won’t be digested.

The Mid Snacks
Why is it necessary to have mid snacks? Let’s understand the theory behind this first. It is ideal when you have 5-6 small meals per day as opposed to 3 huge ones. This does not tax your system and you get the maximum benefits out of the food. The mid snacks therefore become necessary because the portion of the food that you consume during your breakfast, lunch and dinner is lessened due to the fact that you’re having mid snacks. As a rule, every meal should have a 2-2 ½ hour gap between the previous and the next. And consciously try to consume less portions of food because you will any way be having mid snacks. Mid snacks is not like a meal. It is a snack, so include things like half a cube of cheese, tender coconut, a glass of milk, cucumber, tomato or sprouts, chickpeas and nuts. All of these are absolutely healthy foods. Do not fool yourself with the idea that chips or patties etc is considered healthy eating or a healthy snack, because it is not.

Other Pointers

  • You’re probably not willing to give up on the other foods that are not considered healthy. You can have them, but you need to know when. Once you know that they’re not healthy for you, that should be a deterrent by itself. But if you do want to give in to temptation sometimes, just make sure that you have them early in the morning or right after an hour of exercising and only once a week! These are the times that it won’t have a negative effect on your body and one should keep this in mind especially if one is on a drive to losing weight.
  • Go in for a detox once very 15 days for a complete cleanse of your system. But be very careful about this, please research before doing anything!
  • Eating healthy is just one section of good health. Health also depends on your lifestyle, so help your health by doing some form of exercise, sleeping and eating on time and refraining from drinking and smoking.
  • Try not to mix food types. If you’re having rice on a particular day, then don’t have rolls and vice versa.
  • Have a lot of water! And hot water if possible. Avoid drinking cold water with your meals as this hampers the process of breaking down food and causes varied degrees of digestive problems.

I hope I’ve been able to at least give you the general idea of a healthy diet and how to start eating healthy. So make the most of it and live the only way you’re supposed to – healthy and hearty.

Planning Healthy Meals for Your Kids

There comes a time in every mother’s life when she will have to deal with the fear of her kids taking to junk food or becoming picky eaters. And since it is pretty obvious that every mother wants her kids to have healthy meals and build a good immune system so that there are no deficiencies, the ever present conundrum will always put her on a quest to find healthy meal options. Then that is exactly what this piece is all about. It will give you some basic ideas on how to plan meals for kids and what to include in the same.

Planning for Kids’ Meals

Timings for Having Food Should be Fixed

Make sure that you keep a check on the kind of food kids are eating and the meal times as well. If you do not feed them at a time when they are hungry, they will end up stuffing on unhealthy food. Which is not something you want.

Kids Should have Breakfast

Make sure that you include breakfast in your kids’ diet. If this habit is inculcated from the very beginning then the kids will not have a problem following it throughout their lives.

Include Variety in the Kids’ Food

Kids need variety, so aim to mix up the foods and do not stick to the same menu all through the week.

Presentation of Food is the Key to make the Kids Eat

Kids don’t know the importance of eating their greens and the like, so chances are they’ll refuse to have them. That is why it is your duty to make those dishes interesting for them. Make sure to include a small treat or a favorite food in most meals. This will make them feel motivated to have the food. Telling them about how the food will help them get energy like their favorite cartoon character or the like. In this manner you can make sure that the kids eat well and right.

Quick and Healthy Meals

Sandwiches and Tortillas

Sandwiches are one of the easiest and convenient to make dishes for kids as they provide high nutrition. The trick is to make it interesting with ingredients like chicken, eggs, ham, and beef and include colorful vegetables like tomatoes, peppers, and cucumbers. Change the tastes by adding different sauces and spices. Include side dishes like boiled vegetables with it and you’ll have some of the best meals on a budget.

Rice

Rice is another favorite among kids. Make it more interesting and healthy for them by changing the way in which you make the rice. Add ingredients like chicken, seafood, and vegetables to the rice or make it a simple form of cumin or saffron rice. Simple, tasty, and nutritious. Provide a side dish of mashed potatoes and you’re good to go.

Soup

Variety upon variety of choices are available for this one. Chicken, mushroom, and vegetable soups are always a favorite. Make use of healthier ingredients like spinach, carrot or beet soup when kids don’t like it in any other medium. Once in a while also include alphabet and macaroni soup and you’ll have happy troopers at that table.

Noodles and Spaghetti

Simple noodles, or spaghetti and meatballs―these traditional recipes make for some interesting choices as well. Use a variety of ingredients and spices to make them more interesting.

Fun and Healthy Foods

Beans and toast

Jam/marmalade/peanut butter and bread

Hummus and pita

French omelet

Fruit dish spiced with pepper

Salads with assorted salad dressings

It might seem like planning healthy meals for kids is a gargantuan task and no mean feat to achieve, but now that you have been given an idea of how to go about it, as well as have a few recipes for the same, I’m sure you’ll have no trouble coming up with some healthy and tasty meals.

Best Body Building Tips For Beginners

Getting started, probably the most difficult of all grades. Or operation of open violence or project force without work, hurry up the volume over the globe, even in his body to the construction involved. Well, depends on getting just the fact that the body of the building from the beginning of the five tips and what you need.
I registered in the gym. Best of all tips and the structure of the body for beginners, this is the greatest of all things. Where else could it be better for such a warning and the use of Master in the hands of the best of the best tea or get out of the body building, but a Facilities in the gym!To him is based on how-Tos magazine mouth in righteousness, for they will be hard for you In your fitness club, with benefits of the various drowned in you can be.
2. The question, in consultation. There is no claim to the right hand of evil? How will we be able to get the best tips and structure of the body early if they do not try to find between. A conference that he and the practice of science has the power.
In short, is a repetition of the best teacher. Therefore, before the gym to try something to point to the arms at you.
Examine how profitable for you. Sometimes the reactions of the best there is, looking for a network to the four corners of the gym.
3. Take things slowly. And do not rush. That means he has a very frequently, every fault the effort. There are only men probably stolen at the time. Collect your exercises in a herd of the body by the law? Moreover, it was occupied by muscle, but you have to lose. Train every thing its part of the week, most of all, regarding the largest in the least. Follow a certain Moris.
4. Here begins the supplements in one go. No one use of the many things that is always a time for everything. Although I would not, if only on the flat plain, according to the still, all bodybuilders are the right thing without regard to results. If you are willing, for they are many of the supplements that allow you to choose.
5. Diet. People had always learn about something they say is easy but the hardest part to accomplish. Building lifestyle and body in order that. And as both a united and you do not get Optio it is moved.
As many as possible can be powered by Daye for the protein they are fat, meat and dried tuff wrist. Can be removed your calories and cholesterol attraction. Naturally, your trainer can provide you with a list of all the foods that you and we need to take should be avoided.
While these things are the body of the early structure of the tips will help you on your way, the act of the battle, remember, with a spirit that ever one wishes to be delivered in a positive good will it do . To avoid a fluent but difficult exercises of all the works.

Ways to Make Eating Healthy Easier

In the middle of the week, after staying late at the office for three days in a row, it can be much easier to make a stop at a fast-food restaurant on the way home than even think about cooking a healthy meal for you and your family. Surprisingly, though, cooking healthy meals can be really easy if you follow these simple tips.

Plan a Weekly Menu

The best way to keep yourself from eating pizza and takeout all week is to plan a weekly menu of foods that you will make during the week. On the weekend, take a few minutes to look through your cookbooks or search the internet for great recipes you want to try, make a grocery list, and go buy all the ingredients you’ll need for the week. Keep in mind that you can save money by making several meals with the same ingredients, and this also helps to avoid wasting food. You can make burgers one night and tacos the next, for example, all while using the same ground beef and veggies. Write down your menu and tape it to the refrigerator so everyone in your family knows what you’re having, and so you’re held accountable for making the food you planned to make. Creatively using leftovers can also be a real time-saver and help you cook healthier meals each night.

Chop in Advance

No one wants to come home after a long day at work and stand on their feet in the kitchen, chopping vegetables. Immediately after you get home from the grocery store, chop everything you’ll need for the week and store it in reusable containers. You can even organize your containers based on what meal you’ll be cooking, so all you have to do is come home, take out the proper containers, and toss them in the pan.

Buy Frozen Foods

Frozen foods are a great time-saver. I’m not talking about frozen pizza or TV dinners, here. If you’re trying to eat healthy, you probably want to avoid those items! However, steam-in-bag vegetables and pre-marinated meats are a great way to eat healthy without spending too much time preparing a meal. They’re easy to pop in the microwave or oven right after work, and they taste great, too. Just be sure you thaw your meat before going to work so you don’t have to spend time doing that when you get home.

Cook With Colors

People eat with their eyes as much as their taste buds, and part of making healthy meals appetizing is making them look good. Make it your goal with each meal to put as many colorful foods on the plate as possible. Have green and orange vegetables, white and yellow cheeses and breads, and blue and red fruits with every meal. This will not only make your plate look delicious, but it will help you get all of your key nutrients, too. It helps, also, if you divide your plate into four, putting a different piece of the meal – and of the food pyramid – in each segment. This can help ensure you get all you need to keep you going through a busy work week.

The Simpler the Better

You don’t have to “master the art of French cooking” to be a great chef. When looking for recipes, a good rule of thumb to follow is the simpler the better. Recipes with five to ten ingredients are usually the best, especially for the work week. You don’t need to make a Thanksgiving feast every night. Just some really good meat and veggies will do the trick.

Finding Healthy Foods for Kids

Knowing about the list of healthy foods can give parents an idea of what can be included in nutritious meals for kids. It is discussed below:
Dairy Products

Milk is a powerhouse of essential nutrients. In fact, studies show that milk contains as many as 9 nutrients including vitamin A and essential minerals like calcium, zinc, and potassium. For healthy bones and to keep eye problems at bay, kids must drink two cups of milk everyday. Apart from milk, kids should be given homemade yogurt, which is an excellent source of ‘good’ bacteria. Dairy products like cheese and butter are also excellent sources of calcium.
Seafood

Besides, being a rich source of proteins, fish is found to be high in omega-3 essential fatty acids. For optimal brain function, including sources of omega-3s is necessary. No wonder, fish is regarded as a brain food. There are different varieties of fish but doctors recommend those that have low mercury levels. Choosing salmon is a better option, when it comes to preparing meals for kids. Parents can enhance nutritional value of kids’ lunch by adding few servings of sushi, twice a week.
Eggs

Protein-rich foods like eggs are essential to keep the kids healthy. Proteins play a key role to build strong muscles as well as promote hair growth. However, as eggs are high in cholesterol, children should not be given eggs everyday. Therefore, adding one boiled egg at lunch or breakfast on every alternate day is recommended.
Meat

Lean cuts of meat that include skinless chicken and turkey are low in fats and excellent sources of proteins. Meals consisting of chicken with vegetable soup, baked potato with salmon or a salmon sandwich are some of the healthiest foods to lose weight.
Other healthy meat choices for kids are given below:

  • Chicken meatballs
  • Chicken breast with a roll
  • Chicken sandwich containing small amount of mayo
  • Rice containing lean cuts of chicken
  • Fish sticks

Vegetables and Fruits

Green leafy vegetables have long been hailed as a primary source of vitamins and minerals and are an integral part of a healthy diet. They can also help to reduce fat and combat obesity in kids. Dishes made from vegetables like spinach, broccoli, tomatoes, carrots, cabbage, and Brussels sprouts are indeed good for health.

Fruits can also contribute to boost vitamin intake in kids and promote weight loss. Few servings of papaya, avocado, guava, mango, orange, and strawberries provide ample nutrients. Fruits like pineapples, apples, and peaches are good for the intestine and can help to prevent painful bowel movement in kids. Steamed broccoli or cauliflower and slices of cucumber and carrots or a green salad can be a great addition to kids’ lunch. Salad for kids are not only delicious but also provide plenty of health benefits. So, be it lunch or dinner, a salad recipe must be an integral part of kids’ meal.
Whole Grain Products

Whole grain products that include brown rice, oat bran, oatmeal, whole wheat bread, and whole grain cereals, are high in complex carbohydrates and fiber as well as contain substantial amount of magnesium and potassium. Carbohydrates are the main energy sources for the body. So, your kids’ morning breakfast should specifically consists of high energy foods, derived from whole grain products. This will ensure that your kids do not experience fatigue and remain energetic and active throughout the day.
On the whole, healthy foods help to enhance intellectual capacity and grasping power of kids, thus enabling them to face the competitive world without any reluctance. Also, children getting health foods on a daily basis seem to be more cheerful and happy, thereby making it easier for parents to handle them.

Ways to Make Sprouts

Sprouting edible seeds, dried beans, and pulses is a common and inexpensive way to ensure good health. Sprouting is basically a process of soaking and draining seeds, beans, or pulses until they germinate. For those who are new to sprouts and its health benefits may wonder why sprout to germinate the seeds and pulses to consume, when one can just cook them the way they are.
Why Prefer Sprouted Beans and Lentils Over Normal Ones?

The process of germination is marked by significant nutritional changes; breakdown of complex compounds into a more simple form, that makes digestion of protein, carbohydrates, and fats more easy and quick, combined with its heightened enzyme activity during the germination period making sprouts extremely enriched with vital nutrients. Commercially produced sprouts are known to carry allergies associated with food.
Making Sprouts at Home

Before you start the process, choose the type or types of sprouts you want. While there is a vast variety of seeds or pulses that can be sprouted, the commons ones include mung bean, chickpeas, clover seeds, fenugreek, and alfalfa. Besides these, one can also use adzuki bean, amaranth, annatto seed, anise seed, basil, brown rice, pinto bean, lima bean, buckwheat, canola seed, celery, cilantro, clover, cress, dill, fennel, green lentils, pearl millet, rye, sunflower, and wheat berries. Kidney sprouts are mostly never made as they get toxic, and have to be cooked completely to eliminate the toxins.

  • Choose the seeds, and clean them well. Discard all the broken or damaged seeds; they will not germinate.
  • Wash the seeds under running water well.
  • Stand the seeds in a bowl of water for 5 minutes. Dead seeds, along with dirt and left over husk will float atop, while healthy seeds will settle to the bottom. Discard all such waste.
  • Wash the seeds again, and soak them overnight or for 6-8 hours in room temperature water. Adequate soaking will soften the seeds or pulses exterior shells, and the enhanced metabolic activity of the dormant seeds will increase as soon as they are hydrated. Soaking is also beneficial to activate the plant’s digestive enzymes.
  • After 6 to 8 hours of soaking, drain the water completely.
  • Rinse the seeds once again.
  • Spread a muslin or a cheesecloth over a large strainer, and tilt the bowl full of soaked seeds into it, and hold for a couple of minutes. This will help you get rid of all excess moisture from the bowl.
  • Fold up the cloth like a pouch and place it in a bowl with a lid, or tip the contents from the strainer into a clean dry jar and screw on the lid.
  • Place the sprout container in a warm dark place, leave it undistributed for 24 hours in a warmer climate, while for 36-48 hours in cold climate.
  • Once the sprouts are ready, rinse them once again under running water, drain, and store in a jar in the refrigerator.
  • The germinated sprouts should look white or slightly green, and must not smell.

Sprouts can be eaten raw or can also be steamed or cooked in hot water. Making a sprout salad is easy. Slice some cucumber, tomatoes, and toss it with sprouts, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Sprouts can also be added to soups or rice casseroles. Use them as a sandwich filling or stir fry with some vegetables. It takes some time to get used to the taste of sprouts. Whichever way you eat them, it is just health all the way!