Six weeks into the new year, you may feel a little less motivated to stick to some of those New Year’s resolutions. But all it takes is some smart decision-making and a little bit of effort to make healthy food exciting again. What could be easier than water?! It’s something you drinking regularly anyway, so let’s give it a facelift. Here’s how to stay hydrated and healthy.
Instead of floating a few wan slices of cucumber or orange in your H2O, puree the produce with a little water, strain it and mix in some more water. The refreshing result, known as agua fresca, will taste like a liquid distillation of the ingredient. Try it with any fruit or vegetable you love. Hydration just got a whole lot tastier!
Agua Fresca Fiesta
2 cups diced cantaloupe, pineapple or English cucumber, or 2 cups whole raspberries or pomegranate seeds
6 cups cold filtered water
Ice, for serving
1. Place the fruit (or vegetable) in a blender with 2 cups water. Blend on low speed until finely chopped but not pureed.
2. Pour the mixture through a fine sieve set over a bowl; press on the solids. Transfer to a pitcher; add the remaining 4 cups water. Skim and discard any foam that rises to the top. Pour the drink into ice-filled glasses, and enjoy all day long!
By Tula Karras
Is tea really the new coffee? You can decide that on your own. But for those of you who are tea fans like myself, let’s take a look at how our bodies benefit from drinking different types of teas. Not a tea drinker? Then it might be time to convert! With the six different types of tea below, you’ll have no problem finding one that’s right for you!
Compared to other teas, black tea has the highest caffeine content and helps to maintain cholesterol levels, cardiovascular function and a healthy circulatory system.
2. Green Tea
Green tea is often popularized as one of the healthiest teas and with good reason too! Green tea has shown to prevent clogging of the arteries, burn fat, counteract oxidative stress on the brain, improve cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of stroke and neurological disorders like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases.
3. Oolong Tea
Often served in Chinese restaurants, oolong tea can be a healthy part of your weight loss plan. When it comes to skin disease like eczema, a study revealed that if drinking one liter of oolong tea can provide moderate improvement in your skin after a month.
Add a little glamour to your cup of tea with this Sparkling Tea made from black tea
4. White Tea
White teas are full of healthy antioxidants and are the best tea for your skin and complexion. As white teas are the purest and least processed of all teas, they have the most potent anticancer properties and need to be brewed carefully.
Herbal teas such as peppermint, ginger and lemongrass are rich in vitamin C. In addition, they help relieve stress, aid with stomach and digestive problems and strengthen your immune system.
6. Chamomille Tea
Chamomille tea comes from a flowering plant like a daisy and can reduce menstrual cramps, control your cold and help with sleep.
After a stressful day at work, try out this Relax Already Apple Tea made from chamomille
Source: teavana.com and healthmeup.com
I’ve often considered whole grains to be bor-ing and have definitely been guilty of relegating them to side dish status. Recently, however, I started noticing whole grains popping up in more and more restaurant–as stellar appetizers, salads and vegetarian main dishes–and have experienced a change of heart.
This Meatless Monday, I challenge you to get on this trending train and put these old, ancient grains in the spotlight as your main dish star. With the recipes below and numerous options including farro, millet, barley, brown rice, quinoa and more, there are multiple ways to make a satisfying meatless dish.
Since I’m a true believer in knowledge being power (nerd alert!), let’s go over a few quick “health hits” first. Did you know that whole grains…
- contain more antioxidants than fruit and vegetables including vitamins and minerals like B vitamins, vitamin E, magnesium and iron?
- can slash the risk of heart disease and diabetes by more than 25 percent when consumed regularly?
- cost half the price of meat and are full of fiber which keeps you full and helps you burn more calories? (Yup, that’s right. You can save money and lose weight? Hell yes!)
Now let’s get cookin’!
“Farro is one of my favorite types of wheat,” says Rachael. “And now you can find it in pasta!” Farro pasta has a nutty and complex flavor without the heaviness of whole grain pasta. Look for it in your local stores or online. Click here for more casual 30-Minute Meals from Rachael.
When you’re looking for flexibility, quinoa is the grain to use. I love this ingredient because it can be creamy or crunchy, shaped and molded into other dishes like patties and works as the main attraction or a just a garnish. In addition, it’s gluten-free and super fast to make. Zucchini and corn are tossed with light and fluffy quinoa in this colorful main dish. However, feel free to experiment with whatever veggies you like the most or whatever is in season. Serve this salad hot or cold and save time by making it up to 2 days in advance and storing in the refrigerator.
Farro is a healthy whole-grain that Italians have been eating for years in everything from salad to soups. As a complex carbohydrate, it breaks down slowly in your system which helps to keep your energy levels stable. Make this recipe for approximately $2.50 per person and add in mushrooms for an extra buck. Click here to get this recipe and more $3 Italian soups.
Usually you’ll find barley playing second fiddle in a soup recipe, but this meatless meal from our Italian-inspired Express Lane Suppers showcases barley’s subtly buttery flavor by pairing it with butternut squash and peas. Save time by using pre-cut squash from your grocery store and our Express Lane Supper recipes and customized 10-ingredient shopping list.
Wanna learn more? Get the scoop on how to cook 6 of our favorite whole grains, 7 easy ways to incorporate them into your every day recipes and the must-know do’s and don’ts of grains with our How to Cook with Whole Grains Guide.
As if we didn’t already love extra virgin olive oil enough–we even have a well known abbreviation for it, EVOO–two recently released research studies are giving us another reason to love this healthy fat!
Aside from being chockfull of antioxidants and high in monounsaturated fat, researchers have found that olive oil increases satiety, the feeling of fullness, which could be key to a healthy diet and weight loss.
Read on about why you should smell your olive oil after the jump!