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Sunday, February 27, 2011

Super Foods!

If you've never been on StumbleUpon, then you need to go now. Basically, you tell the site things that you are interested in, and then you "stumble," upon pages that are under those categories. I recently stumbled on a Women's Day article from their website. It is a list of 52 "superfoods." I am going to directly copy that list to this post, and then add my own two cents in green.

1. Eggs Each egg has 6 grams of protein but just 72 calories. No wonder researchers at Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, found that eating eggs for breakfast (as part of a low-cal diet) helps you slim down.
I LOVE eggs. My favorite way to cook them is either hard boiled or scrambled with hot sauce and cottage cheese (I know I'm weird, but it tastes really good!).
2. Tomato sauce It’s loaded with lycopene, which makes your skin look younger and keeps your heart healthy. In fact, a Harvard study found that women with the most lycopene in their blood reduced their risk of a heart attack by 34%.
3. Dried plums(prunes) They’re packed with polyphenols, plant chemicals that have been shown to boost bone density by stimulating your bone-building cells.
4. Walnuts Just 14 walnut halves provide more than twice your daily dose of alpha-linolenic acid, anomega-3 fat that’s been shown to improve memory and coordination.
Walnuts in Cookies=best thing ever. I have a really good recipe for chocolate chip oatmeal cookies w/walnuts I'll have to post. 
5. Brussels sprouts They have more glucosinolates (compounds that combat cancer and detoxify our bodies) than any other vegetable. For a side dish that will make you wonder why you’ve been avoiding them, slice each one into quarters, then sauté in olive oil with chopped sweet Vidalia onions.
I adore Brussel sprouts. I actually ate some an hour ago. The best is fresh ones, but frozen works too. Steam them, and either put a little bit of butter and some salt on it, or make this sauce:
Melt 4 Tbs. Butter in a sauce pan
Add 4 Tbs. of flour, one at a time, and stir until its all mixed(this should be on medium high heat)
Add 1 tsp of salt
Pour in 1 1/2 cups of milk, and combine the whole mixture. 
Continue to cook on medium low heat until it thickens, add some pepper, and pour over brussel sprouts. You will want to live off of them-its DIVINE! and also not that healthy :)
6. Acai juice A glass or two of this anthocyanin-rich berry juice can dramatically boost the amount of antioxidants in your blood, say Texas A&M University researchers.
7. Apples They contain quercetin, an antioxidant that may reduce your risk of lung cancer.
Fuji apples, sharp cheddar cheese, and low-fat Club crackers=tasty and healthy snack
8. Bok choy This calcium-rich veggie can protect your bones and may even ward off PMS symptoms.
9. Steel-cut oats Because they’re less processed than traditional oats, they’re digested more slowly—keeping you full all morning long.
10. Salmon You’ll get all the heart-smart omega-3s you need in a day from just 3 oz
11. Avocados Their healthy fat keeps you satisfied and helps you absorb other nutrients. For a new u twist, brush a halved avocado (pit removed) with olive oil and grill 1 minute. Serve with red onion, sliced grapefruit and balsamic vinegar.
12. Spinach A half-cup provides more than five times your daily dose of vitamin K, which helps blood clot and builds strong bones.
One day last summer, I had a strange craving for spinach. I bought a bag, and kept it in the freezer, and used it ALL the time. I added it to salads, sandwiches, pasta, and steamed it and ate it plain. Its also really good with scrambled eggs. 
13. Canned pumpkin It’s filled with natural cancer fighters alpha- and beta-carotene.
Pumpkin cookies, and pumpkin cookies are delicious! I will post recipes for these as well. 
14. Cauliflower White foods can be good for you! This one is packed with cancer-fighting glucosinolates.
I stumbled upon a recipe for oven-roasted cauliflower that I think I'm going to try out for my next recipe post. 
15. Scallops A 3-oz serving has 14 grams of protein but just 75 calories.
16. Collard greens They’re exploding with nutrients like vitamin A, zeaxanthin and lutein, which keep your eyes healthy.
17. Olives They deliver the same heart-healthy monounsaturated fat you get in olive oil, but for just 7 calories per jumbo olive!
I know I say every food is my favorite, but these really are. Any time I get sanwiches anywhere, I always ask for extra olives. They are just so tasty!
18. Brown rice It’s a top source of magnesium, a mineral your body uses for more than 300 chemical reactions (such as building bones and converting food to energy).
Rice and Soy sauce(watch out for sodium on soy sauce though because 1 Tbsp has 980mg!) is one of my favorite quick meals
19. Oysters These keep your immune system strong. A 3-oz serving (about 6 oysters) dishes up a quarter of your daily iron, plus nearly twice the zinc and all the selenium you need in a day.
20. Edamame One cup has a whopping 22 grams of plant protein, as well as lots of fiber, folate and cholesterol-lowering phytosterols.
Last night, we made chow mein and added edamame. This was definitely a good decision-it added a lot of flavor as well as nutritiousness! 
21. Strawberries They’re loaded with ellagitannins, phytochemicals that may halt the growth of cervical and colon cancers.
My favorite way to eat strawberries is on waffles with whip cream!
22. Lentils A great source of meat-free protein, a half-cup of cooked lentils also gives you nearly half your daily folate, a B vitamin that protects a woman’s unborn baby from neural tube defects.
23. Bran flakes Their whole grains keep your heart in tip-top shape by reducing inflammation and melting away belly fat.
Lately I've been craving Raisin Bran. They also failed to mention that the help your digestive system to function better and your bowels to be more regular. 
24. Kiwi Italian researchers found that it reduces asthma-related wheezing, thanks to its high vitamin C content (one kiwi has 110% of your daily requirement).
25. Black beans They’re loaded with protein, fiber, and flavonoids—antioxidants that help your arteries stay relaxed and pliable.
26. Sunflower seeds A quarter-cup delivers half your day’s vitamin E, which keeps your heart healthy and fights infection.
27. Sardines 3 oz provide more than 100% of your daily vitamin D. Sardines are also a top source of omega-3 fats. Try adding mashed canned sardines to marinara sauce and serving over whole-wheat pasta.
28. Asparagus A half-cup supplies 50% of your daily bone-building vitamin K and a third of your day’s folate, it’s a natural diuretic so it banishes bloating, too.
For a good recipe for Asparagus, look here
29. Bananas They’re loaded with several kinds of good-for-you fiber, including resistant starch (which helps you slim down).
30. Broccoli sprouts They have 10 times more of the cancer-preventing compound glucoraphanin than regular broccoli.
31. Fat-free milk With a third of the calcium and half the vitamin D you need in a day, plus 8 grams u of muscle-building protein, it’s the ultimate energy drink.
Just FYI, don't try and freeze fat-free milk. Its kind of watery in the first place, but after freezing and thawing it, it tastes like you had a dribble of milk in your cup and then filled up the rest with water. 
32. Baked potatoes Each one packs a megadose of blood-pressure–lowering potassium—even more than a banana.
33. Sweet potatoes Half of a large baked sweet potato delivers more than 450% of your daily dose of vitamin A, which protects your vision and your immune system.
Sweet potato fries with rosemary are a delicious, healthy, and easy snack. I will post the recipe for this as well. 
34. Flaxseed Not only is flaxseed loaded with plant omega-3s, it also has more lignans (compounds that may prevent endometrial and ovarian cancer) than any other food. Store ground flaxseed in your refrigerator and sprinkle on yogurt, cold cereal or oatmeal.
My mom used to grind up flaxseed and put it in cookies. She had it at a pretty fine consistency, so it was pretty hard to tell that it was there. Flaxseed can also help to clear up acne. 
35. Greek yogurt It has twice the protein of regular yogurt.
36. Dried tart cherries Researchers at Michigan State University found their potent anthocyanins help control blood sugar, reduce insulin and lower cholesterol.
37. Wheat germ A quarter-cup gives you more than 40% of your daily vitamin E and immune-boosting selenium.
38. Whole-wheat english muffins You get 4 ½ grams of fiber for only 134 calories.
39. Tea Both green and black tea prevent hardening of the arteries, according to researchers at the University of Scranton.
40. Peanut butter This smart spread has arginine, an amino acid that helps keep blood vessels healthy.
41. Blackberries The king of the berry family boasts more antioxidants than strawberries, cranberries or blueberries.
42. Mustard greens These “greens” (actually a cruciferous veggie) are a top source of vitamin K. For a tasty pesto, chop them in a food processor with garlic, walnuts, Parmesan and olive oil.
43. Grapes They’re a leading source of resveratrol, the plant chemical responsible for the heart-healthy benefits of red wine.
Freeze grapes-they are like little mini slushies and a perfect snack for a hot day in the summer. 
44. Soy milk A good source of vegetable protein, calcium-enriched soy milk has as much calcium and vitamin D as cow’s milk.
45. Brazil nuts They have more selenium than any other food. One nut delivers your entire day’s worth!
46. Canola oil A Tbsp of this heart-healthy oil has all the alpha-linolenic acid you need in a day, plus two different forms of vitamin E.
47. Blueberries They improve memory by protecting your brain from inflammation and boosting communication between brain cells.
48. Oranges One orange supplies more than 100% of the vitamin C you need in a day. It’s also a good source of calcium and folate.
49. Watercress With just 4 calories per cup, this cruciferous veggie delivers a hefty dose of vitamin K, zeaxanthin, lutein, beta-carotene and cancer-fighting phytochemicals.
50. Turkey breast It has 20 grams of satisfying protein but just 90 calories per 3-oz serving.
51. Barley A top source of beta-glucan, a fiber that lowers cholesterol and helps control blood sugar.
Barley is a nice filler for soups-and it tastes good!
52. Shiitake mushrooms One serving (about ¼ lb) provides as much vitamin D as you’d get from a glass of milk.
I like any kind of mushrooms, so I support this. 

The website suggests to "Clean out your kitchen, tossing as many unhealthy items as you can. Single-ingredient foods— apples, chicken, cooking oil, etc.—are keepers. Packaged foods with long lists of hard-to-pronounce ingredients go out, especially if they contain more than 7% of calories from saturated fat or more than 10% of calories from sugar." 
Then they add a challenge: 
"Try It Today: Look through your kitchen and see which of these superfoods you already have. Then eat one at each meal today.
Try It This Month: Pick 3 superfoods from this list that you've never eaten, and add one to your shopping list this week."
I am going to try this! It looks as if my next post will have to be a collection of recipes, but that will help to get these superfoods into my diet!
This information


A Weekend in Colorado

Woody and I met up in Colorado last weekend. It was so much fun! I got in on Thursday night, and spent Friday looking at flowers and running errands with my Mom. Friday night was my bridal shower! It was so much fun! Emily, Jessie, and Lonnie planned it. We had cupcakes, fudge, brownies, a chocolate fountain, and ice cream. I liked them all! Woody and I have a pretty stocked kitchen after this. It was a kitchen themed shower, so we got a lot of utensils and appliances for which I am so grateful for! I'm so excited to cook and to use them! Everyone brought their favorite recipes too, so I am excited to try those out. I also got 2 aprons, and I LOVE aprons. I'm excited, if you couldn't tell.

After the bridal shower, I was going to write my thank you notes while I waited for Woody's plane to come in, and then go down to Denver to pick him up. At 9:00, he notified me that his flight, which was supposed to be landing in Denver at 11:40pm, was delayed an hour and a half. This would put him in at approximately...1:10am. First off, I was sad because I wouldn't get to see him for even longer, and Second, because we had a to-do list that was 7 feet long for the next day, so we needed sleep in order to survive. But alas, I continued to work on my thank yous. At 11:45, Woody told me he had boarded the airplane, and was taking off soon. At 12:35am, Mitchy and I left our house and drove the hour drive to Denver. Woody still hadn't landed. So we waited at the deserted airport. Then I realized I had to go to the bathroom REALLY bad, so I went inside, but I was too scared to go because there wasn't hardly anyone in the airport, and I knew that some rapist/murderer/zombie was waiting in the bathroom for some unsuspecting victim. I waited at the top of the escalator where the arrivals filter into, and finally, at 2:04am, Woody's face came into view. It was a really happy reunion! Of course, since it had been more than a month since we'd seen each other.

The night wasn't over yet though, Woody stood guard while I went to the bathroom, and then we went to wait for his luggage. It took a while.

At 2:40am, we finally left the airport. It was close to 4 when we got back to my house, so we went to sleep asap. The next morning, we left my house around 10 and went to look at wedding bands, then we went to the church to visit my mom at a Relief Society thing and introduce Woody to lots of people, then we went and celebrated Valentine's day by getting Big City Burrito(which is amazing) and going to a park and eating it. While we were eating, a black man walked by and started singing "Isn't she lovely?" 

After that, we went to Goodwill and found Emily(my sister) a really cute(ugly) sweater for her birthday. Then we went and found Woody a tux(not at Goodwill), and did other things on our list which I can't remember because I was too tired.

We ate dinner, then watched Dumb and Dumber with Matt(my brother). We were super tired still, so we went to bed on the early side.

Sunday we went to church, then went and took pictures with Mom. They were a lot of fun to do, especially when we kissed and she'd say "Okay enough of that." What a silly. We got some pretty good ones though! We also went and mapped out how we want the reception set up. 

Monday morning at 5:30, Woody and I left to drive him back to the airport. It was a fast goodbye, and a hard one, but exciting because the next time we will see each other will be in April!

Lynetters still had a lot of stuff on her "To-do for Presidents Weekend," list, so after I tried recovering from my 4 hours of sleep, we were back out running errands. That night, the fam all drove down to Denver with me, and we had Panda Express before they dropped me off at the airport. The "hot donut," sign was on at Krispy Kreme, so naturally we had to stop.  My flight was supposed to leave at 9:35, but we didn't end up taking off til close to 11. I arrived in Idaho Falls after 12:30, thankfully didn't have to wait for checked baggage, and then strolled off the plane into Marisa and Taylors waiting arms. They must like me a lot to wait that late at night for my plane to land ;) ALSO, on the flight, the boy next to me kept falling asleep on my shoulder and talking to me, which I wasn't really liking that much.
Anyways, we got back to Rexburg at 1:30, I went to sleep, woke up the next day for work at 8, and then survived that week up until this point. I can't believe a week has already passed. What a crazy life!
I don't know why this flipped...but oh well! 41 more days :)


Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Mushrooms and Green Peppers!

Mushrooms and green peppers, actually bell peppers in general, are two of my FAVORITE foods! I just like them for their taste, but after doing research, I learned that there is a lot 
more to like.


Peppers are loaded with Vitamin A and Vitamin C, which work as antioxidants to balance free radicals in your body. In addition to that, these vitamins can assist with better eye sight, and healthier lungs.

Peppers also contain Vitaman B6 and folic acid, which help to reduce the risk of atherosclerosis and heart disease.

They contain fiber, which helps keep you regular, and also helps to lower cholesterol.

"Traditional Chinese Medicine uses bell peppers as a natural treatment for certain medical conditions relating to digestive issues and blood circulation such as indigestion, loss of appetite, swelling, frostbite and food stagnation.(2)"

1 pepper has as much Vitamin C as 2 oranges

There are 30 calories in 1 cup of chopped bell pepper


Mushrooms are 80-90% water, and 8-10% of the remaining nutrients is fiber. 

Mushrooms are high in potassium, which helps lower blood pressure and decreases the risk for stroke. 

1 cup of chopped mushrooms is 15 calories

These are both easy to throw into a salad, soup, or spaghetti like I did!