Simple but powerful foods for women


I just read this article from Yahoo Shine and it really hit me that taking care of yourself as well as eating health is a very simple process. I loved what this article had to say. My mom’s boyfriend also always use to tell me, “if it didn’t come from the ground, then don’t eat it.” That couldn’t be truer. I’m tyring my hardest to stay away from any kind of processed foods period. It can be hard sometimes but I always feel so much better when I do.

Read this article. I promise you’ll be happy that you did!

by Stephanie Clarke, R.D., and Willow Jarosh, R.D., for SHAPE.com

The best foods for women of any ageYou grind in the gym every day to look and feel your best, but if your diet doesn’t include these 12 power foods, you’re doing yourself and your health a disservice!

To strengthen bones: parmesan cheese
Calcium is key for preventing osteoporosis (especially in your 20s). Yogurt and nonfat milk help, but who wants them three times a day? Work Parmesan cheese into your diet; its 340 mg of calcium per ounce – compared to about 200 mg in cheddar or Swiss – goes a long way toward your 1000 mg/day quota.

To boost immunity: apples
Smart and sweet, apples are rich in quercetin, an antioxidant that can bolster your body’s disease-fighting abilities. In one study from Appalachian State University, just 5 percent of people who ate more quercetin came down with a respiratory infection over a two-week period, compared to 45 percent of those who didn’t.

RELATED: The Top 50 Summer Foods for Weight Loss

To build your iron stores: lentils
Low-calorie lentils pack about 30 percent of your daily iron per cup cooked. About 12 percent of young women have low iron stores – at the extreme, that leads to anemia. But one study found that even women who were iron deficient (not anemic) had poorer performances on skill tests than those with normal levels.

To fight wrinkles: broccoli
“A cup of broccoli has 100 percent of your vitamin C-crucial for production of collagen, which gives skin elasticity,” says Tammy Lakatos Shames, R.D. It’s also rich in beta-carotene, which the body converts to vitamin A. This vitamin assists in cell turnover, so old skin cells are replaced with fresh (read: younger-looking) ones.

To get healthy carbs: potatoes
Potatoes contain a fat-fighting compound called resistant starch that can help keep weight in check. One medium spud with the skin will run you just around 100 calories, and with more potassium than bananas, potatoes also help fight heart disease by keeping blood pressure low.

To up your intake of folate: spinach
This leafy green is high in vitamin K and also contains calcium and magnesium – a combo that may help slow the breakdown of bone that occurs as you get older – as well as folate, a B vitamin that helps prevent birth defects. And it packs just 7 calories per cup raw!

To stress less: dark chocolate
European researchers found that people who ate an ounce and a half of dark chocolate – about 200 calories worth-every day for two weeks produced less of the stress hormone cortisol and reported feeling less frazzled. Cortisol causes a temporary rise in blood pressure; consistently high levels up your risk for depression, obesity, heart disease and more.

To fight cancer: mushrooms
One study showed that women who ate just one third of an ounce of raw mushrooms a day (that’s about one button mushroom) had a 64 percent reduction in breast cancer risk. Other research suggests that mushrooms reduce the effects of aromatase, a protein that helps produce estrogen – a major factor in some breast cancers.

To fight heart disease: sardines
These pungent little fish are good sources of omega-3 acids, which decrease inflammation that can lead to blocked arteries. They also prevent blood clots that can cause heart attacks and strokes, and keep blood vessels smooth and supple. Three ounces of sardines have about 1.3 grams of omega-3s (you need about 1 gram a day).

To help flatten your belly: avocados
Avocados are high in monounsaturated fat, which has been shown to help you drop weight, including from your troublesome middle. In one study, people who got the most monos (about 23 percent of their daily calories) had about 5 pounds less belly fat than those who ate a high-carb, lower-fat diet.

RELATED: The 6 Most Overlooked Foods for Weight Loss

To protect your eyes: bell peppers
Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and cataracts are leading causes of vision loss, but foods rich in lutein, zeaxanthin, and vitamin C, like bell peppers, can keep eyes sharp. A cup of sliced red, yellow and orange peppers contains nearly twice your daily vitamin C, plus 116 micrograms (mcg) of lutein, and 562 mcg of zeaxanthin.

To boost energy: whole-grain pasta
Whole-grain pasta is loaded with B vitamins, which help your body convert food into energy. And unlike processed grain products that lack fiber, whole grains are more filling than their refined counterparts. In other words, you’ll feel satisfied with fewer calories.

More on SHAPE:
6 Moves for Slimmer Hips and Thighs
25 Healthy Grab-and-Go Lunches
The Hottest Summer Nail Trends

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Drink that water


Recently I was put on blood pressure medicine for….high blood pressure wooo. Never thought in my life that day would come but it did. I am trying to take care of myself better so I can eventually get off of it. I don’t eat terrible but I think the combination of my age(42), the stress that I am under, and the yo yo eating habits I’m on contributed to causing the high blood pressure. With that being said, since I’ve been on the bp medicine I have been feeling achy, my neck and back have been hurting, but even before the medicine I was feeling those same symptoms coming on so I went for blood work and it turns out that my kidneys were showing that I have not been drinking enough water. Now I know the benefits of drinking water and how important it is but for some stupid reason I never did. Well for the past 3 days I have increased my water intake probably by 85% and let me tell you I am starting to feel like a different person. My neck stopped hurting, my bones stopped aching, my lower back is starting to feel better. All because of water. I am your average run of the mill mom and my advice to whoever is reading this, if you are feeling a little off increase your water consumption. Start there first and see how you feel just after 3 days. It is such a simple solution to a problem that you would never think could go away or be so easily solved.

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Mash the meat


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Did you notice in my “best meatballs ever” blog how I have a potato masher in the bowl with my meatball mix? This is a little trick I learned from Rachel Ray. You can mash-up your meat mix and it gets all the ingredients mixed in there so nice but yet doesn’t condense the meat too much. I love using it! Old time tools are some of the best ever.

How to reupholster your kitchen chairs


How to reupholster kitchen chairs.

Seriously this is so easy and it’s cost almost nil to what it would be to send it out and have it done.

Step 1.  Find the fabric you want to cover your chairs in. If it is a highly used chair(kitchen area)then I suggest something a little durable and with a pattern. I love the gingham pattern. It’s always been my favorite. Make sure your measurements are correct. Even a little minor screw up can be costly. All though I bought my fabric at Walmart and they have great prices on their selection, you still don’t want to waste time and money going back for more if it was cut wrong the first time.

Step 2. Invest in a decent staple gun. I finally did and it was well worth it. I spent under $24.00 for staples and a staple gun which I’ve gotten my monies worth out of already. Lay fabric flat with chair pad on top. Fold over and leave excess which you can trim up after. Pull taut and start on one side stapling.

Step 3. As you staple pulling taut, flip over to make sure there are no wrinkles. Take your time doing this. It isn’t a race. Even if you get one or two chairs done a day it’s still worth your time and effort. I like to pull the corners tight and over lap from each side. That usually takes care of any wrinkles.

Step 4. Staple every 1/2 inch around, pulling taunt throughout. When finished trim the extra fabric off. Make sure you keep some just incase you want to add accents to your kitchen at least you’ll always have a swatch available.

Step 5. End results. Dog not included but she seemed to like the new look herself!