Do you ever wish that there was a guide book for eating that simply laid things out as to what you should eat to stay healthy?
Sure, there are millions of them but I want an index. I want to look up a part of my body or a health feature and it point me directly to page 27 or 321, whatever the case may be. I want it put into simple terms not confounded with this will do this but this can do that and if you put these two together maybe this will happen.
I want nutrition for my body made simple and easy for the laywoman.
I stumbled across this article in Health magazine and it was all so simple so I wanted to share it with you.
Eating melon and citrus is great for breast health.
Oranges and melons are rich in immune-boosting vitamin C, and studies indicate that a diet heavy in vitamin C rich foods helps prevent breast cancer. Plus, orange juice is high in folic acid so ladies, drink some orange juice every day. It could pay off in health dividends.
Rhubarb is good for your bones.
Who knew? Not me. Rhubarb, a bony-looking veggie that looks like celery’s fancy colorful cousin, is rich in vitamin K, which helps activate three proteins involved in bone health and increases bone-mineral density. I wonder if it counts if the rhubarb I am eating comes in the form of a crunch?
Olives are amazing for your ovaries.
Women whose diets included a lot of olive oil had a 30% lower risk of ovarian cancer. It is believed that the healthy fats in the olive oil may help suppress genes predisposed to causing ovarian cancer. Thankfully, I already use olive oil as a part of my diet on a regular basis.
Walnuts are wonderful for the brain.
Walnuts are a great source of essential omega-3 fatty acids, which help brain cells communicate with each other and are essential to cognitive performance, memory, and nerve health. And you thought you had to take fish oil pills to get your daily-recommended allowance of omega-3 fatty acids? Good news, I prefer walnuts to pills any day.
Carrots are good for your eyes.
Carrots are rich in beta-carotene, which the body converts to vitamin A. Your eyes need A to keep your cornea, which covers the eye and protects it from outside irritants, in tiptop condition.
Grapes do the heart good.
Red and purple grapes contain flavonoids, which protects against heart disease, as well as cancer and brain aging; just a few more reasons to enjoy that one glass of red wine with dinner every night. If the grapes in a glass of wine can protect you from heart attacks, cancer and brain-aging, why aren’t we all given this tid-bit of information on the day we turn 21?
See how easy that was? Eat this and not that, and this is good for you and will help this certain part of your body. Can you imagine taking all this information into consideration each day when you planned your meals? We could all live to 110.
What food do you eat strictly for its healthy properties?
It’s that time of the year again and you know what that means? Flu season and cold season are here. With seasonal allergies, strep, colds and flus we tend to experience a lot of sore throats. Regardless of the cause, a sore throat hurts a lot and all you want is for it to stop. Here are a few tips to try next time you start get that itchy, scratchy, swallowing razor blades sore throat feeling.
Sucking on cough drops keeps your throat moist by stimulating saliva production. For maximum effect, choose a cough drop brand with a cooling or numbing ingredient to help ease your pain.They say zinc is supposed to be very effective but I must warn you, every zinc lozenge I have ever tried tasted like I was sucking on a nickel.
A very effective treatment for all kinds of sore throats is an NSAID anti-inflammatory. They will ease your pain and reduce any accompanying fever while reducing any swelling of your throat. It’s like an all in one treatment.
Gargling with saltwater
When I was a child I had more than my fair share of earaches and sore throats, and my mother always made me gargle with saltwater. Turns out that gargling with warm salt water helps to reduce the swelling in the throat and loosen mucus and helps flush out bacteria. Use about a teaspoon of salt to a cup of warm water and always spit, never swallow.
Drink lots of fluids
Haven’t we all heard this from our parents since we were children? Hydration is especially important when you are sick. It keeps your throat moist, therefore lessening pain and irritation and your mucous membranes moist and in better condition to fight bacteria. Fluids help the body perform at optimal level and it’s good for you. So drink up.
There is just something about the warm soothing effect of tea and honey on a sore throat that is like a hug from your mom. Plus, it has antioxidants that strengthen your immune system. If you are over 21, sometimes a shot of brandy added to warm tea and a teaspoonful of honey can feel like the nearest thing to heaven on a scratchy, red throat.
Sleep sounds like a simple solution but most of the time when I catch a virus, it’s because my system is run down and I was susceptible. My body was simply too weary to fight off whatever it came into contact with, so it stands to reason that sleeping it off will give your body the strength to get better, plus sleeping just makes you feel better when you are sick.
How do you ease a sore throat? What’s your go to trick?
Weight and body size are not easy subjects to bring up to anyone. In fact, I prefer to just avoid it all together. It’s always been a sore subject with me and I’d just assume no one ever discuss weight with one another, ever. I prefer we send notes without having to see the look of the gut punch on someone-you-love’s face.
I especially NEVER want to talk to my children about being overweight so I prefer to talk to them in general terms before it is ever an issue. I never want to sit down my overweight tween or teen and talk to them about their weight. It just feels like running through a minefield with clown shoes on. So, I have decided that I want to talk to my children about weight and eating habits before it ever becomes an issue.
I know from personal experience that telling a child they are overweight, or anyone for that matter, doesn’t inspire them to lose weight. It only serves to make them feel bad about themselves and probably eat more or embark on some other equally as unhealthy lifestyle choice.
There is a huge difference in feeling like you want to be healthy and feeling like you are fat. Feeling fat feels like being a failure on some social level to most.
In a recent study by the University of Minnesota researchers, appearing in JAMA Pediatrics, it was found that mothers and fathers who engaged in weight-related conversations had adolescents who were more likely to diet, use unhealthy weight-control behaviors, and engage in binge eating.
Overweight or obese adolescents whose mothers engaged in conversations that were focused only on healthful eating behaviors were less likely to diet and use unhealthy weight-control behaviors. Additionally, subanalyses with adolescents with data from 2 parents showed that when both parents engaged in healthful eating conversations, their overweight or obese adolescent children were less likely to diet and use unhealthy weight-control behaviors.
It all came down to the execution. It was the same conversation. Both conversations were well-intended parents worrying about their child’s weight, but in one scenario they discussed weight and size and in the other it was strictly about being healthy.
By making the child focus on the weight, either by calling them fat or saying they might get fat, by making it a failure, the child was more likely to go the unhealthy route like developing eating disorders, go on extreme diets, fast or use laxatives.
But kids whose parents focused only on how to eat healthy and avoided judgmental statements about their weight were less likely to have eating problems. Overweight kids whose moms talked to them about healthy eating had far fewer problems than those whose mothers did not discuss eating in a healthy way.
Don’t bring attention to how your child looks or how much they weigh; instead, talk to them about being healthy and never compare them to others. Never focus on looks because people come in all different sizes and shapes. Just because your child is not a size zero does not mean they are not perfect the way they are.
Get your kids excited to be healthy. At my daughter’s school, they have a 5k program where they pair kids up with mentors. My daughter wants to run, so I told her that we will do it next spring and I will do it with her as her partner, but we need to train. Which means eating right and building up our endurance.
An immediate goal is a great motivator to improve healthy habits. Everybody wants to be and do his or her best to excel.
The study also found a greater effect on changing children’s eating habits when the dad was involved in the discussion, but the focus has to stay on healthy eating habits and not veer off in the direction of size. Most importantly, be the example you want your child to follow. If you want a child who eats right and exercises regularly, do it yourself. If you want a healthy child, be a healthy adult.
How do you talk to your child about weight?
Photo Source: SweetOnVeg
My husband is my best friend. On many days he is the only adult that I get actual face time with. The great thing about marriage and a solid relationship with your partner is being able to talk about just about everything with your husband or wife.
But there are boundaries, things we all know that we shouldn’t say because sometimes things are said in anger, haste or frustration that are not helpful and mostly just hurtful, and as you know, you can’t unsay something. You should always think before speaking, especially in anger.
You may say something that needs to be said but in a different way. I always try to talk about the important issues that need to be discussed when I am not frustrated about it because I know that I have a tendency to go for the verbal jugular.
If I am hurt, I tend to lash out and say things that come out sounding cruel instead of constructive, and this can be damaging to your marriage. Luckily, I have learned to try and think before I speak.
There are a few things that should just never be said, and here are a few.
“Leave me alone. I’m not in the mood!” We’ve all thought it but don’t say it. Think of it this way, how would you feel if he said it to you. You’re allowed to feel that way, and you’re allowed to say no, but why not first give him a kiss or a cuddle then tell him that you just need to decompress so that you can be fully engaged when you are with him. Then when you get your head into it, let him know. He can’t always be the one who initiates.
“Your mom’s a b*tch!” There is usually some sort of tension between mother-in-laws and daughter-in-laws but don’t put your husband in the middle. He knows his mom gets on your nerves but what do you expect him to do? Hate his own mother?
If it were your son, would you want him to agree with his wife that he hates you just to satisfy her? NO. Your hatred for his mother is your thing. He knows it. He tries to survive in the in-between. As long as he is not constantly siding with her over you, don’t expect him to throw his momma under the bus.
My husband has learned that his mom gave him life but I gave him children, and on most topics he sides with me if she is making me feel bad in any way. I also try not to put him in that position as often as I did when we were first married.
“Forget it. I’ll do it myself!” I am guilty of this one. I am a control freak and when I want/need something done, I need it done now not whenever you get around to it. So, if he doesn’t get up to do it immediately, I tell him to forget it that I will do it myself.
I know it is ridiculous because it’s irrational, hurtful to him because he feels like I don’t trust him to accomplish things, and demeaning because I am treating him like a child. I am working on it. I’ve learned to praise the things he does well and applaud him for his efforts at trying others. I am learning to appreciate that we are different and one way is not better than the other, just different.
“Please watch the kids.” Okay, firstly, a man is not an imbecile. He understands that children need to be taken care of. I know it’s hard to trust anyone with your baby, but if you can trust anyone, it’s the person who provided the other half of the DNA.
If you are hypercritical of how he does it, he may stop trying and then you will be resentful that he’s not helping. If you want a hands-on-dad, you need to trust him to his own abilities. I promise he will surprise you. If you don’t, you will make him lose his confidence in his ability to care for his own child.
“Is that all you did?” I learned this lesson from having children. Never be condescending when someone is helping you do anything. Be appreciative that they are helping at all. Maybe it’s not perfect, but at least he’s trying and that’s more than most. Maybe you can gently demonstrate how to do it correctly by example rather than chastising his efforts.
Honestly, if you want to be happy for the rest of your life, open and honest communication with your spouse is the only way to go. Passive aggressive hints are for suckers who are headed for divorce. Speak your mind but do it with thought and care.
Photo Source: Samantha Lauren Photographie
If you live in San Diego, Del Mar, Phoenix, Texas or Austin, Texas you may have heard of Searsucker? Searsucker is more than just a summer fabric from your childhood, it is Bravo’s Top Chef finalist, Brian Malarkey’s restaurant.
It is a foodie’s paradise, specializing in farm to table cuisine. It has a vibrant bar scene and is a fit for your special occasion. Enjoy an eclectic menu and indulge in its wide open comfortable space.
Recently, I had the opportunity to dine at Searsucker in San Diego, California. Searsucker is one of the finest downtown San Diego restaurants. Situated in the heart of the Gaslamp District, Searsucker serves new American Classic cuisine paired with specialty cocktails and unique local brews.
Chef Malarkey has created a fantastic eatery full of local fare. The farm to table aspect is strongly reflected in the taste of the food, everything is fresh and clean. The menu includes fresh seafood caught on the San Diego coast as well as locally brewed lagers and ales on tap.
The airy, eclectic design of the 7,000 square foot restaurant in downtown San Diego features an open kitchen and lounge divided only by furniture. It feels part retro barn and part downtown nightclub.
Friends and family can chat with chefs and servers as easily as they can with each other. Searsucker isn’t a place to get away; it is a place to get together. The lighting is warm as is the atmosphere, and the staff are courteous and knowledgeable.
I was there with a large group and the staff handled the dinner, accommodating all of the different diets, without a hitch or complaint. Food was placed in front of each of us without interruption. My conversation with fellow diners was never intruded upon by a waiter leaning between or above us.
There is a flow in Searsucker that is felt in everything from the conversation to the farm to table food and even in the atmosphere. You won’t want to leave and when you do, you will be counting down until the next time you come back.
The night I was there I sampled a lot of food, but there were still a lot of things that I didn’t get the chance to try. A girl’s only got so much room in her stomach, after all.
I started the evening with a house specialty drink called a Skinny Jenny. It was made from citrus vodka, ginger beer, lavender syrup and lime. If you like mojitos, you will love a Skinny Jenny. For appetizers, we had a sampling of the brie triple with strawberry jam and currants, artichoke hearts with Gruyere and tomato, and spicy shrimp with bacon grits. Is your mouth watering yet?
For my salad, I had the strawberry, champagne, walnut and goat cheese over a bed of fresh greens. It was as amazing as it sounds. For my main course, I indulged in the loin filet with lobster butter and mushroom demi. It was decadent.
For sides, we were brought a sampling of butter potatoes, jalapeno chorizo corn off the cobb and fried Brussels sprouts with walnuts. I had never been a fan of Brussels sprouts before that night but now, I prepare them like this and I have them at least once a week.
To top it all off, we were brought samplings of the pig and peanut brownie, banana cake and vanilla bean cheesecake.
I must admit that by the time I left, I was sufficiently stuffed but between the ambiance and the amazing food, I really didn’t want to leave. Great food and good conversation with new friends made a memorable impression on me and I would recommend Searsucker to everyone. Bon Appetite!
Photo Source: SearSucker
While in Chicago recently, I discovered a new footwear company, Brian James. Never heard of them? Me neither. Where do I live? Under a rock? Maybe.
The pair I have are called the Angelle and they are gorgeous. They are soft, silky black suede with a padded foot bed, ankle support and a flexible sole. They were made for me. Anyone who knows me knows that I am a sucker for fashion but I am also a ginormous klutz.
Seriously, like epic proportions klutz. I trip up the stairs. You put me in 5-inch heels and someone is definitely going to get hurt before the end of the night.
Angela Edgeworth, founder of the award-winning kid’s shoe brand pediped footwear, created the Brian James Brand. Over 2000 retailers in more than 50 countries sell Pediped. The brand is worldwide one of the top children’s brands, hands down. Her biggest request has been when was she going to parlay the comfort of pedipeds into an adult line, and she has in the Brian James line.
She named the company after her husband. Brian James has all of the core features of the Pediped line: comfort, quality and style but is sophisticated enough for an adult. At first, I wasn’t sure that I’d want a shoe made for me by a child’s brand designer. I mean after all, I am a grown woman. I didn’t want another Croc situation. I had nightmares of shoes in outrageous colors with dinosaur heads or tiaras, but alas I was wrong.
Instead, the Brian James line is sleek and sophisticated and comfortable enough to wear all day, but professional enough to be worn in the office.
Brian James debuted its collection in the spring of 2013 and it did not disappoint. The shoes are comfortable and stylish. Made with leather uppers and linings, padded foot beds and soft, flexible soles. They are so comfortable that you will not want to take them off.
I wore them around the streets of Chicago for a few hours and I thought for sure that I would have Charlie horses that night or sore feet and legs. I’d done the same route just the week before in a pair of similar sandals that were not Brian James and the results were vastly different.
In the other shoes, my feet were so tired and sore that I could barely walk the next day. I was pleasantly surprised when I got home from wearing the Brian James Angelle sandals and my feet felt fine. In fact they felt better than fine, they were great.
I love my Angelle’s because not only do they look great with jeans and capris, they are also equally as attractive with dress shorts or dresses. These shoes are very versatile. I love my pair.
The only thing I am not crazy about is the fact that they have a Velcro closure. I think that may have missed the mark a wee bit with that and I would have much rather preferred a buckle or a snap because, you know, I am a grown up and my digits have full mobility but honestly, other than that, my Angelle by Brian James are awesome.
What is your favorite pair of comfortable yet fashionable shoes?
Photo Source: The TRUTH about Motherhood
Family vacations are something my parents and all my brothers and sisters looked forward to every year. We would load up in our Oldsmobile and head out onto the open road.
Sure, it was hot and sticky and I am sure some of us were whining and all of us were driving our parents crazy at some point or another, but it was unforgettable. I still remember our trips and those memories will be with me forever. I want that for my girls.
Here are some places that I think are great family vacation spots for every family.
Why not step back in time with your family while strolling down the streets of Williamsburg, Virginia? You can walk along with red-jacketed soldiers in tri-corner hats and ladies in powdered wigs and lace dresses. Costumed actors re-enact what life was like in 18th century Williamsburg for politicians, slaves and the towns people around the time of the Revolutionary war.
Williamsburg is the perfect place to get kids excited about history without it feeling like a burden or feeling forced upon them. Instead of trying not to fall asleep learning about the revolutionary war, they will be too busy asking living, breathing towns people of Williamsburg about their loyalty to Great Britain or their desire for freedom from the Queen.
For a real treat, stop at Christiana Campbell’s Tavern that still serves seafood meals that are based on original recipe favorites of our founding father, George Washington. Talk about giving your kids a taste for history.
D.C. is one of my favorite places in the country. There are so many famed national landmarks in our nation’s capital that you will never be short on things to do.
You should start at the heart of it all: the National Mall. The two-mile stretch of land nestled on the banks of the Potomac River houses the U.S. Capitol, the Washington Monument, the Lincoln Memorial and the Vietnam Veterans War Memorial and the White House. Monuments and Memorials are open 24 hours a day, which makes it possible to experience D.C. on your own schedule.
Make sure to allot plenty of time for all of the Smithsonian sites, all 19 of them. They are all free of charge and your family will love it. My girls adored the National museum. To this day, it is one of our favorite places we’ve visited as a family.
If you want to visit the White House or the Capitol, you must schedule way in advance. If you plan on being in town during Christmas time, enter to win tickets to the lottery to attend. It’s a once in a lifetime treat.
New York City
New York is known as the city that never sleeps so plan your trip carefully. There is so much to do that you will have to pick and choose.
Favorite attractions that your child will love are the Empire State Building ( I wouldn’t miss the change to take them to where An Affair to Remember started), Rockerfeller center, Times Square, Central Park or the Statue of Liberty. Then there is MoMA, the Met, the Guggenheim, FAO Schwartz and shopping at Barneys.
My girls are into ballet and theater, so a trip to Broadway is a must. And who doesn’t want a Grey’s Papaya hot dog and a thin slice of New York style pizza? There is so much to do and see, it would take more than one trip to see everything and experience New York City.
Your children’s imaginations will run wild at the sheer sight of the Grand Canyon in Arizona. Cliff walls plunging into the abyss or jaw-dropping canyons that stretch for days will have your children, and yourself, captivated by it’s beauty and splendor.
The Grand Canyon can be viewed from a skywalk, by mule or from a watercraft floating through the Grand Canyon. Any way you do it, the view is magnificent.
There are several ways to experience the Grand Canyon. You can splurge on an adventure at the Grand Canyon Ranch where kids can ride horses, ride in a real wagon while viewing Bison on safari, and gather around a campfire at night to sing and eat before heading off to slumber in a cabin or teepee.
This is a once in a lifetime trip that your children will never forget. Prepare to blow their minds.
Where is your must visit family vacation spot? What was your best family vacation ever?
Photo Source: Ritesh3
Have you ever had the misfortune of making the acquaintance of a one upper? A one upper is the type of person in life that has to be right all the time, get the last word in and argues about even the smallest of things.
They not only have to always be right, they have to turn every single conversation back towards them. You just got a raise at work, the one upper just got a raise, a promotion and a corner office. Having a conversation with a one upper is a difficult feat at the very least.
Many men and women one-up their friends at some point in time, maybe without even realizing it. It usually happens during a spirited conversation when one person is talking excitedly about her new purse/boyfriend/job/apartment and then her friend jumps in with the news that she just got engaged to a lawyer who bought her a 12 carat diamond ring from Tiffany and they are moving to a 4000 square foot apartment in Manhattan.
The one-upper usually apologizes for interrupting the conversation, tells her friend to continue with her story (which is now more of a joke), and it usually gets waved off as no big deal, just a conversational etiquette faux pas that happens occasionally amongst friends. Everyone moves on.
Then you have those people who are constantly one-upping people during conversations. I, unfortunately, know one of these people in real life. She one-ups everyone so much that I am sure that she doesn’t even realize that she is doing it anymore.
I can tell you that she is so annoying that I avoid being in a room with her at all costs. In fact, we were at a baby shower for a mutual family member the other day. We were all gathered around the first time expectant mother telling her how beautiful and glowing she was when the one-upper approached and immediately started comparing the mom-to-be to her own daughter who has children.
Telling the mom-to-be/guest of honor how much smaller her daughter was at that week of pregnancy, how tan her belly was and how beautiful she was and had hardly gained any weight and was still rocking a bikini and had no stretch marks and rode off into labor on a diamond farting unicorn.
There are a few ways to deal with the one upper:
How do you deal with a one upper?
Photo Source: Procsilas
What is the Sandwich Generation? If you’re between 35 and 55 years old, you are part of the Sandwich Generation. It’s adult children who are financially responsible for their own children and aging parents.
Due to a slow economy, kids are growing up, going off to college, graduating, not finding a job and moving back home; or getting a job, getting married, having kids, losing a job and moving the entire family back in with mom and dad. Parents step in to help their children and end up spending money they would not normally be spending.
Parents are living longer. Today, many adults are living 20-35 years into retirement and they need help getting around and managing their finances. Eventually, they will end up living with their adult child. Only it’s getting a little crowded in there with all adult children and parents moving in.
It’s a little style cramping for the sandwich generation. These are supposed to be the golden years; the kids are finally out of the house and you can finally enjoy one another again. That’s a little difficult with a bunch of people living with you.
It is financially draining to be a middle aged adults, trying to save for your own retirement, while still supporting grown kids and simultaneously trying to care for parents. So how do you do this without going broke, losing your cool and burning bridges or just plain getting on one another’s nerves?
Here are a few pointers:
1. Set boundaries. Of course you want to help your children who are down on their luck, but there has to be an expectation of leaving and an urgency to get back on their feet. The most important thing you can do is raise responsible, independent children who are self-reliant.
2. Discuss finances with your parents before they actually have to move in with you. Know what you are taking on. It probably won’t change your mind but it will allow you no surprises.
Just be open and honest and ask them what they have in savings? Who is their banking institution? What is their insurance coverage? Do they have life insurance? Make sure that all coverages are paid and current. Get rid of unnecessary bills.
Your parents may get offended or think you are only interested in their money to see what you will be inheriting. You need to be honest with them and let them know you are only asking to know where they stand financially and where you may need to fill the gap.
3. Don’t blow your entire retirement fund taking care of your parents because then you will be dependent on your child when you retire. This leaves you vulnerable and your child resentful. Did you enjoy spending all of your money on your parents? Stop the vicious cycle. Work within your means.
4. Discuss final wishes and funeral arrangements with your parents before they are on their deathbed. Be as gentle as possible when discussing their mortality, but it has to be done.
What tips do you have for surviving the sandwich years?
Photo Source: MoodBoardPhotography