Healthy Food

Roast chicken and toast on table

Your Chicken Should Be Antibiotic Free

The dating world can be scary these days. Everyone is looking to have Fun Ways To Move Morefun, but when it comes to starting long term relationships, you need to know some vital information about your partner’s past. After all, if your going to be putting parts of a person’s body into your body, you need to know where those body parts have been. The same can be said of your chicken. If that chicken is going to be in your mouth and stomach, you should know a little about this chicken, especially whether of not this chicken is antibiotic free. Why? Read on to find out.

Harmful to Human Health
The use of antibiotic on farm animals have been amped up in recent years. Fifteen to seventeen million pounds go the drug are freely administered on a yearly basis. The goal of this is not only to keep animal healthy in general, but also to prevent sickness in animals raised in unsanitary conditions. The results have been anything but healthful. The overuse of antibiotics has resulted in the evolution of antibiotic resistant bacteria strains, superbugs, if you will, and, since poultry products usually carry more than one bacterial strain, it is becoming more likely the meat you buy is contaminated.

In fact, a recent study from the Environmental working group found that 81% of ground turkey, 69% of pork chops, 55 % of ground beef, and 39% of chicken wings and thighs are tainted with antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria like E. coli and salmonella.

Add to that the fact that the antibiotics used to treat chicken are similar to those that are used on humans and the threat to public health increases. Dr. Glenn Morris says that humans who ingest the resistant bacteria may not respond to antibiotic treatment. The risk for children is higher due to less mature immune systems.

Happy hens

Government Response
It would not be an exaggeration to say our government’s response to this danger was underwhelming. In 2013, the FDA declared a “voluntary strategy” asking that drug companies limit the amount of antibiotics in animal feed. While the association released a statement acknowledging the use of antimicrobial drugs as “an important health concern,” and recommended “judicious use of the drugs, the call carries no penalty for failure to comply and is open to ambiguous interpretation.

Antibiotic Chicken
Despite the weak response from the FDA, consumers can be proactive in avoiding the consumption of contaminated chicken. A 2012 Consumer Reports studies found antibiotic free products at 119 stores, including, Whole Foods, and Trader Joe’s. The “no antibiotics” chickens were reasonably priced and, in some cases, actually cost less than the average price of chicken breasts nation-wide. Panera Bread is a leading restaurant in the increasing availability of antibiotic-free products, including chicken, pork. and turkeys, a trend that we will hopefully be seeing more of in the near future. Until then, you can keep yourself informed at RealTimeFarms.com.

What are you doing to avoid eating unhealthy foods? Let us know! We want to hear your recommendations and suggestions!

Woman with pineapple

The Health Benefits of Pineapple

What can you say about a fruit that has its own social history? The pineapple has probably adorned more tabletops than a drunk in a bar. The reasons are obvious. After all, the pineapple just screams centerpiece, and comes complete with its own crowning glory. In colonial America, a hostess would rather be caught dead than without a pineapple at her dinner party. Guests to a house with a pineapple displayed on the table were ensured that the hostess spared no expense for the dining pleasure of her guests and could expect a feast not to be outdone. With a history like this, it would not be inaccurate to say that this crowned natural wonder is indeed the royalty of the fruit family.

But besides its rare beauty and sweetness, there are many other reasons the pineapple is worthy of celebration. Perhaps we should look at some of the incredible health benefits the pineapple offers.

Great For Weight Loss
Pineapples can keep you full longer than other foods because they pack a lot of water and fiber. Plus, they have fewer than 60 calories per half cup and help prevent tummy bloating.

Promotes Cell and Tissue Health
Pineapple increases synthesis of collagen. That means it will help your skin to stay youthful and firm and strengthen organs, bones, and skin. They also contain vitamin C that helps wounds to heal and protects the body from illness and infection.

Promotes Healthy Digestion
Pineapple packs in the fiber, which, according to experts, keeps your intestines healthy and protect against constipation, diarrhea, IBS and high blood pressure.

Good For Your Eyes
As a person’s age increases, so too does the risk of macular degeneration.The Eye Diseases Prevalence Research Group found that vitamin C and betacarotene, both of which can be found in the spiked wonderfruit, can help to prevent or delay this and other age-related eye deficiencies.

Helps To Reduce Cold Symptoms
Although you may think it is only the vitamin C in pineapples which makes them so powerful in combating the common cold, it is also the content of bromelain. Bromelain is a special enzyme that has been shown by University of Maryland studies to reduce the phlegm and mucus that builds up in sinus cavities and respiratory tracts. In addition, pineapples contain properties to help reduce the inflammation of the airways associated with bronchitis.

Strengthens Your Gums
Pineapples have astringent properties that make your gums stronger and prevent your teeth from falling out. They also help to tighten tissue and tone the body, preventing hair loss, skin loosening and muscle weakness. So eat pineapples to keep those chompers chomping.

Beautiful, interesting and functional, what more can you want in a fruit? If you want to help us sing the praises of the pineapple, please send in comments and suggestions. We also welcome recipe ideas!

Woman eating healthy food

Eating Healthy on 2,500 Calories

Two thousand and five-hundred calories every day might seem like a lot of food (or it might not, it really depends on your mental concepts of such things), but for a respectable portion of the population, it’s actually an appropriate target. Specifically, sedentary men ages 19 to 30, moderately active men ages 31 to 50, active men over 50, and very active women of various ages all may need approximately 2,500 calories in their diet.

But of course, it’s not as simple as calorie-counting, regardless of the target number. Not all calories are created equal, and to eat healthily, you need to balance things properly. Let’s talk about how to do that.

Lean Proteins
Protein is essential for everyone, and lean protein is the best you can get in this regard. On 2,500 calories a day, you need approximately 6.5 ounces of protein a day. An ounce of protein can be found in an ounce of seafood, poultry, lean red meats, an egg, ¼ cup of tofu, ½ an ounce of seeds and/or nuts, and a tablespoon of peanut butter, roughly speaking.

Woman having food rich in fiber.

Lots of Fiber
Also incredibly important is fiber. Following a 2,500 calorie plan, you should get 3 ¼ cups of veggies and 2 cups of fruits a day. Variety is key here, and generally, dark, leafy greens and vibrant red and purple fruits are best. For conversion purposes, half a cup of dried fruit is equal to one cup fresh fruit or fruit juice (no added sugar!), and 2 cups of leafy greens roughly equals one cup of other vegetables

Opt for Healthy Fats
For every source of trans fat and saturated fat, there’s plenty of alternatives. That said, healthy fats are still fats, and shouldn’t be over-consumed regardless. You want about 7 teaspoons of oil a day on a 2,500 plan; any extra is going to interfere with your heart health. Olive oils, coconut oil (in moderation; it is still a saturated fat), and avocado oil are just a few examples of healthier fats.

You Don’t Actually Need Dairy
It’s a common misconception that dairy is a basic food group and essential for good nutrition. This is actually quite false, and humans are not really designed to consume any kind of milk once they stop breastfeeding. That said, we’ve evolved to tolerate dairy, and in moderation, it’s not necessarily harmful (unless you’re lactose-intolerant, of course), so there’s nothing wrong with having a little as a treat now and then, but don’t get tricked into thinking it’s essential.

Soy milk, rice milk, almond milk, cashew milk, and coconut milk are a few examples of tasty non-dairy milk alternatives, and can help you avoid the saturated fats of many dairy products or if you can’t tolerate lactose. Skim milk also features less lactose, which might be okay if your lactose intolerance is mild or moderate (as opposed to severe), and it also, of course, contains less fat.

Baked eggplant with tomato and garlic

Clean Eating Tips

One interesting approach to nutrition that’s rising in popularity recently is called simply “clean eating.” And certainly, if it could help keep you healthy both before and after your wedding day, it’s worth a try, right? Well, we’re here to examine and evaluate this trend to give you the information you need to make healthy choices, and to decide if clean eating is worth pursuing.

But What Is it, Exactly?
Of course, before we can go any further, we need to define what clean eating actually is. In essence, the basic tenets of clean eating are eating five to six times a day (three meals and two to three small snacks), choose organic, clean foods whenever possible, and drink at least two liters of water a day. There are other details, like including lean protein, plenty of fruit and vegetables, and a complex carbohydrate in every meal, but the three pillars of eating five-six times a day, choosing organic food, and drinking two liters of water each day are the basis of this idea. This sounds great in theory, but let’s examine it piece by piece to be sure.

Woman drinking water

Two Liters of Water
This is one realm in which clean eating is a little closer to being on-point, although of course, the truth is more complicated. How much water you should drink actually depends on your weight, location, and activity level. The rule of thumb is that you need between half an ounce and a whole ounce of water per pound you weight, every day. For example, a 150-pound person should drink between 75-150 ounces of water per day. The hotter and more arid your climate, the closer to the upper end of the range you’ll be. Likewise, the more exercise you get, the closer to the top you’ll be.

Eating Five to Six Times a Day
The idea here is that eating more often and in smaller portions is both better for weight loss and healthier in general because you’re spreading out calorie intake throughout the day and keeping your metabolism running smoothly. Sadly, the science does not agree here. Studies actually indicate there is no significant impact whatsoever to the frequency of eating, and that, in fact, eating more often makes you want to eat more.

Avocado sandwich

Organic Foods
Similarly, the need for the foods to be organic (and, by extension, GMO-free) in clean eating is not borne out by actual scientific knowledge. GMOs, or genetically modified organisms, are largely a positive development, and allow crops to be fortified with necessary nutrients, more reliably protected from diseases, and be produced more cheaply. On the other hand, organic growing is volatile and has a huge chance of failure or of infested crops, because of the restrictions on pesticide use that organic growing entails. In short, while there are some legitimate concerns with the agricultural industry, organic food is not the answer and generally has no benefit to your health.

All that said, this one is pretty close to the mark. The majority of the other tenets of clean eating are highly questionable, though. Just eat a healthy, varied diet, with proteins, simple and complex carbohydrates, fruits, and lots of leafy greens and other vegetables, and you should be fine.

Salad

Meatless Monday

When it comes to dieting, it can be frustrating and overwhelming to figure out what works for you. Elimination diets are extremely popular, but when not done carefully, they can actually be detrimental to your health. If you have ever thought about trying a vegetarian diet, but aren’t quite sure if you can commit to the total elimination of meat, try easy into it. Meatless Monday is not a new phenomenon, but it can be a refreshing way to change your diet in a way that you can really stick to! Why go meatless?

It’s Good for the Environment
Cutting down on the amount of meat you eat, even when it is only one day each week, can actually help the environment. Relying a little less on meat will cut down on how much water is used to make the food you buy. You will also help reduce greenhouse gas emissions. If more and more people start embracing meatless Monday, it could make a real difference!

It’s Good for Your Health
Replacing a fatty protein with a lean protein once, or a few times, a week is going to help you lose weight, and it is better for your heart. Practicing meatless Monday is said to help you live longer because you get some of the benefits of eating a vegetarian diet, but putting less pressure on yourself to majorly restrict your diet right away is a huge benefit. It is really difficult for most people to cut out meat entirely right away, so joining meatless Mondays makes it really easy to stick to your plan, and a lot of people are trying it, so you aren’t alone!

Easy Way to Mix Up Your Menu
It’s very easy, but never fun, to fall into a repetitive, mundane rut when it comes to food. It can become difficult to come up with affordable, easy to cook options that you have the energy to make after work. Increasing the number of veggies you eat can really help get you out of your rut! There are tons of recipes out there that involve spicing up vegetables to create a filling, flavorful meal.

Dedicating one day a week to try out a vegetarian diet has many benefits. Just make sure you are planning your menu carefully so you aren’t cutting out protein with the meat! It’s easy to get enough protein as a vegetarian, but if you are trying it out for a day, don’t forget to add it to your meals!

Woman having lunch

Eat Like a Supermodel

It’s no secret that the world’s top supermodels train hard to keep in shape, but exercise is only part of the equation to their enviable bodies. Supermodels also are very intentional about what foods go into their bodies, making sure that they are eating foods that are high in vitamins and nutrients. With just three tips, you can eat like a supermodel and truly nourish your body.

Start Your Morning Right
Many supermodels begin their day by drinking warm water with lemon. “Hot water with lemon to start the day, it’s really good and it stimulates the digestive systems,” says Australian supermodel Miranda Kerr. Vanessa Packer of modelFIT, the New York City gym used by models like Karlie Kloss, Martha Hunt and Miranda Kerr, is also an advocate of beginning the morning with light foods. “Begin your day with warm water and lemon followed by a juice or smoothie, which will boost alkalinity [aka your body’s best natural pH for your cells to thrive], give you energy with raw and living vitamins and minerals, and will hydrate you and prep you for the day ahead.”

Stop Counting Calories
“I never count calories. I base my meal plans and system of eating on seasonality, alkalinity and food combining,” says Packer. Victoria’s Secret Angel Candice Swanepoel agrees. “I eat whatever I want, but to me it needs to be healthy – I always think about what sort of vitamins are in the food and what it’s giving my body…I make sure I eat a lot of protein, carbohydrates, good sugars and good fats.” Eliminating calorie counting isn’t a license to go crazy, you still need to be thoughtful about what foods you are eating to make sure you’re filling your body with essential vitamins, minerals and other nutrients.

Woman eating protein bar.

Snack Smart
Kate Upton swears by her daily snacks of 10 raw almonds, green juice and protein bars. Vanessa Packer advises her model clients about snacking saying, “I’m not a big snacker because I think it’s important to sit down and enjoy a meal; your body responds better to that. However, if you are a gal on the go, try packing some crudite with hummus or smashed avocado, or even summer rolls are a great option.” Although Upton snacks on nuts, Packer says to proceed with caution when it comes to eating nuts as your snack. Says Packer, “[y]es they are healthy fats and are packed with protein, but they are very heavy on the digestive system and very dehydrating. Also, if you opt for roasted instead of raw, they become very fattening because the oil found in nuts is compromised when heated.” Eat raw nuts, in moderation and be sure to hydrate with plenty of water after snacking.

The days of the diet coke and cigarette diet are over for models, today they eat real food that provides nourishment and energy to keep up with their demanding schedules. These tips not only help you eat like a supermodel and get into fashion week shape, they are excellent tips for giving your body the nutrition that it requires to keep you healthy and happy.

Fruit and cheese skewers

Resveralife Eat Well: Healthy Hors D'oeurves

During the holiday season, providing healthy food options isn’t typically something many of us focus on. We tend to want to provide or offer something to our guests that tastes fabulous without focusing on calorie content. What if there was a way to incorporate healthy with great taste? Resveralife brings you a few hors d’oeuvres that give you the best of both worlds. The best part is, your guests will love them and never be able to tell they are less fat and less calories as they don’t lack in flavor or taste.

Fruit and cheese skewers

Cheese and Fruit Bites

The accompaniment of fruit and cheese is a timeless classic. Serve with wine for the perfect touch. Super easy and quick to make, you can make a couple of trays in no time. With only 26 calories and 1 gram of fat, you simply cannot go wrong with this delicious concoction.

Ingredients:

  • 1 Lb. Red seedless grape
  • Reggiano Parmigiano cheese wedge
  • Festive foil tin cups (think baking cups)

Directions:

1. Halve all of the grapes.

2. Break cheese wedge into small chunks

3. Place two grape halves and a small chunk of cheese into the foil cups and place on a festive tray for serving.

Grapes are a healthy fruit which contain resveratrol, which contains anti-aging properties that benefit the skin. There are also as many vitamins and minerals which are easily absorbed as well as a high fiber content. Reggiano Parmigiano cheese is also low in fat and calories. This is a great finger food for your guests, and will disappear quickly.

Phyllo dough crab cups

Crabmeat Cups

Crab meat is a delicious and protein filled shellfish which is enjoyed by many people. Be sure to make sure none of your guests have any shellfish allergies before incorporating this into the menu. These delicate crab meat cups offer a delicious taste of something elegant with only 46 calories per cup.

Ingredients:

  • ½ lb jumbo lump crab meat
  • 1 container of phyllo dough shells
  • Lemon mayonnaise
  • 1 avocado
  • Watercress leaves for garnish

Directions:

  1. Divide the crab meat between all of the phyllo shells.
  2. Add ½ teaspoon of the lemon mayonnaise as a topper to the crabmeat in all shells.
  3. Place a small cube of avocado into each shell, and top with a small watercress leaf.

Simple and easy to make in three steps, these crabmeat cups are a surefire way to impress your guests and keep them talking.

Crostini with pea puree,radish,rocket and cheese

Pea Crostini

While not everyone is a fan of peas, this pea crostini is sure to change their minds. Delicious and hearty with only a few minimal ingredients, these are sure to fly off the serving trays – and the best part? They contain a minimal 35 calories and 3 grams of fat. You can double the recipe to feed more people.

Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ Cups Frozen Peas (thawed)
  • 2 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 30 Crostini
  • Goat Cheese

Directions:

  1. Blend first 3 ingredients in a food processor until smooth. Spread 8 oz. of goat cheese on crostini, followed by a spoonful of the pea mixture. Top off with a small slice of watermelon or beets for a pop of flavor.

Peas, although small in size, pack a major punch in terms of protein, fiber, and micronutrients. They also contain polyphenols, which aid in the prevention of certain types of cancer. Extra virgin olive oil, and any olive oil for that matter, is good for moisturizing and hydrating the skin. This is a great accompaniment to your Hors D’oeurves spread.

 

Try one of these simple, healthy, and delicious recipes for your next gathering or party, and you’re sure to please.