Tag Archive Nutrition

ByAnxious Minds

Dealing with Depression: Missing a few meals can help

Who doesn’t go through problems in life? From the worry of bills to be paid, traffic, work, taking care of our families. Gosh, the demands of modern-day life seem so overwhelming. It is no wonder several people are left dealing with depression in a quest to cope with these burdens.

Sometimes, these demands of life may aggravate strong emotions within us such as worry, fear, rage, hopelessness. Coincidentally, these are all symptoms of depression and as a consequence, dealing with depression remains a task that most of us have to undertake on a daily basis.

However, one very overlooked method of depression help and coping with its symptoms is quite simply a fast. It is as old as the mountains and perhaps nothing comes close to restoring ones emotional balance when dealing with depression as this powerful tool.

An observance of nature will show us that when animals are frightened or angered, they abstain from eating until after the passage of some time. More over, it is true that under stressful circumstances many civilised people refrain from eating and find in truth that they lack the desire for food, but it is also too often that most of us will eat large meals under these circumstances, which will be mostly disease forming foods to start with, that as a consequence, complicates or altogether halts an already retarded ongoing digestion.

This considered, perhaps the last thing you may want to do while dealing with depression-be it its causes or symptoms is to eat excessively, I may go as far as to say to even eat at all.

Worry, fear, anxiety, excitement, hurry, heated arguments at meals: all prevent the secretion of the digestive enzymes of the body and hinder not only digestion but the whole nutrition process.

Perhaps, this is why according to the Bible, when most people were in grief or needed to be atoned with the Creator, they fasted. When used as a tool for dealing with depression, if combined with a powerful and faith-driven prayer, fasting, my friends really unleashes the mental powers within us to solve our problems. It makes us come closer to our potential as true images of the Highest, and we can, as a result, see and think clearer as a step for a powerful and effective depression control method.

Fasting as a means of dealing with depression also greatly benefits ones overall health as, during its use, the digestive organs are given a rest. More over, the mind clears allowing for a disappearance of all moroseness. We re-discover peace of mind and tranquillity and life’s difficulties are not as overwhelming.

So when problems seem to weigh in on us when dealing with depression becomes an almost daily struggle for us, perhaps from all the indications above, the best thing to do will be to undertake a fast. It definitely won’t hurt and can help immensely.

ByAnxious Minds

Dairy Free Diet to Treat Autism

Parents are turning to their child’s diet to when treating  Autism. Some believe that Autistic children have a food sensitivity. They believe dairy, also known as Casein, is one of the foods to cause problems with Autistic children. Removing all dairy from your child’s diet can at first seem very difficult to do. Most kids love cheese and ice cream.

Most people following a dairy free diet also remove Gluten from the diet. The ingredient in dairy that it thought to cause problems is Casein. Casein is a protein found in dairy products such as milk, cheese, yogurt, butter, and some hotdogs. It is very important to read all labels on food the child will be eating.

If you are going to try the dairy free diet with your child you will need to make sure they are getting enough calcium. This can be done with vitamin supplements, or milk substitutes. Many types of food are including calcium.

It is thought that the Casein reacts in the Autistic child’s body causing the unwanted behaviours. They think if the dairy products are removed some of the behaviours will leave. It should take a few months  to know if the diet is working for your child. If you are considering removing Gluten from the diet too it is advised to try removing dairy first. The dairy is removed from the body much faster than the Gluten. Gluten can take ten months or more to be completely removed from the body.

Following a Casein free diet can be expensive. Most milk replacements cost double the price of regular milk. Not all stores will carry the dairy free products. They can usually be found at specialty, or health food stores. You can find Casein free products on the internet for mail order. There are also lots of Casein free recipes available online. To save on the cost of Casein free foods some families find another family in their area using the same diet, and share the cost of ingredients by buying in bulk. They then split the foods.

If you choose to try a Casein (dairy) free diet with your Autistic child remember to allow enough time to see if the diet is helping. It can be helpful to keep a journal while trying the diet. Keep a record of behaviours your Autistic child has. Then you can see if the number of behaviours is dropping. If you have not removed Gluten from your child’s diet you may want to consider this if your child is not improving from the dairy free diet.

To find out if your Autistic child has a sensitivity to dairy (Casein) have them allergy tested. This will tell you if you should remove any other foods from the diet. If you are wanting more information about Casein free diets visit your local library. You can find many books that deal with dairy free living. The internet is also a great source of information.

A Casein free diet might be helpful in treating your child’s Autism. It is not a cure for Autism though. It will only help treat some of the symptoms.

ByAnxious Minds

Staples of a Healthy Pantry

While many of us stock up our pantry in case of an emergency, very few of us think about stocking up a healthy food pantry. Sometimes food that is bought for the sole purpose of storing in a pantry for future use is not always the healthiest choice we can make.

However, there are several foods that are wonderful choices for both healthy and in case of pinchi pantry situations. Stocking your pantry with these items will make healthy cooking easy.

Beans

Possibly the number one food that should be in anyone’s pantry is the bean. Kidney beans, cannellini beans, lentils, and navy beans are only a few among the vast variety of beans. Beans contain large quantities of protein while offering just as much variety to any meal. Beans can be used as main ingredients in dishes such as casseroles or as a topping to a salad. Used in Mexican dishes such as a Tex-Mex bean dip or as part of a fajita, beans add flavour, variety, and protein. Beans can certainly take the place of fatty red meats in some recipes while never losing an ounce of flavour.

Whole Wheat Pasta

We all know the benefits of adding whole grain into our diet. Yet another added benefit of whole wheat pasta is that it is so versatile and can help us put together a quick meal in a pinch. Whole wheat pasta offers bran, fibre, antioxidants, and all-important B vitamins.

When your pantry is stocked with whole wheat pasta, the possibilities are endless. You could toss some broccoli and shrimp together with whole grain spaghetti, add a salad, and have a delectable meal in minutes. Perhaps some sun-dried tomatoes and chicken tossed with some whole wheat pasta is just the thing for your family.

Whole Grain Cereals

Cereals that are high in fibre and low in sugar are the best staple any pantry could boast. Fibre keeps your stomach full and can jump-start your day getting you healthfully on your way.

Olive Oil

Olive oil has been used for centuries to provide high quality, excellent taste, and health benefits. With olive oil as a staple in your pantry, you will find its uses endless. Olive oil is useful for frying skinless, boneless chicken, for tossing on salad and even as a concoction for dipping your whole grain bread. The health benefits that olive oil provides far outweigh its cost.

Canned Goods

Canned goods are an immediate staple of any pantry. However, be careful of what is in those canned goods. Look for low-salt canned goods such as diced tomatoes. Canned salmon is an excellent source of protein and provides necessary Omega 3s, while broths that come in the low sodium variety are easily added to any recipe.

These are just a few of the staples that can get every pantry up and running to a healthy start.

ByAnxious Minds

How Whole Foods Help You Lose Weight

There is always a new fad in the diet and weight-loss industry in the way of a pill or a tonic. Today, however, trends seem to be heading back to the direction of what nature intended for us good, wholesome foods. We hear a lot of talk about whole foods, but what exactly is a whole food anyway?

Whole foods are foods that are eaten just as nature intended them, without any change or processing. Every food designed by nature has a purpose and a cause and whole foods are excellent foods to look at when seeking to lose weight.

There are several things that whole foods do not or should not contain. For example, oatmeal can be either be processed food or natural whole food. If it is quick or instant oatmeal, you can be sure that it is not a whole food and that something was taken out of or even added to it in order to make it processed. Steel-cut oats or rolled oats would be, in fact, a whole food.

In addition, looking for something that has been added to your food choice would be a way of discerning if a food was whole or processed. If there is an added ingredient such as sugar, food dye, chemicals, artificial fillers or a name that you cannot even pronounce, you can be sure that these are not whole foods.

Some great examples of whole foods are foods such as bananas, grapefruits, tomatoes, potatoes, and pears. These food items are provided by Mother Nature and are whole in their entirety as nature intended them to be.

Root plants such as beets and carrots are another good example of whole foods. Think of any fruit that you can pick yourself straight from nature such as an orange or an apple and a vegetable that you might grow in your very own garden and you will have an idea of what a whole food really is.

Whole foods help you to lose weight by the simple fact that they were designed to be absorbed and digested by your body. Body parts such as the liver can break down enzymes; blood cells can turn food into energy and so on and so forth. By eating whole foods in their natural state, you allow your body the privilege to work exactly the way it was intended.

When you put something foreign into your body, on the other hand, such as sugar or salt and fat, you can make your body go into flight or fight mode. Your body will attack these substances and work twice as hard with no benefit whatsoever.

Eating whole foods allows your metabolism and your energy as well as your digestion to work the way nature intended, thus allowing for the proper absorption and maintenance of the weight you lost in the first place.

ByAnxious Minds

How to Eat more Whole Foods each day

Once you understand what whole foods are, you can then begin to recognise why they are so important to the overall health and wellbeing of your body and mind. Whole foods are intended to be eaten as is and accepted for what their values and benefits are. When you eat a whole food, you offer your body a host of bountiful nutrients and benefits. One of those benefits is to allow your body to function the way that nature intended it.

The old adage that knowledge is power certainly does apply to whole foods. If you know how beneficial they are for maintaining weight loss and boosting metabolism, you will certainly find creative ways to incorporate those whole foods into your diet.

Thankfully, Mother Nature had it all figured out when it came to whole foods. Not only do they have the benefit of vitamins, minerals (being all-natural) and providing your body with the ability to function properly and lose weight, they are also extremely portable.

For example, how easy is it to grab an apple, an orange, or a banana as you are running out the door? We all know female friends who put their makeup on at a red light. How about taking that time to eat a banana or an apple on the way to work? If you wake up ten minutes earlier and put your makeup on at home, then you can use your red-light time for something much more productive like eating a fruit-filled breakfast.

Whole foods such as potatoes and even sweet potatoes can be microwaved as well. Since just about every office or workspace has a microwave, wrapping a sweet potato or two in a paper towel and placing it in the microwave has never been easier. You can achieve the benefit of that whole food with the ease and convenience of the microwave.

Whole foods come in many varieties, shapes, and forms. A skinless piece of chicken breast is a whole food as long as it is not processed nor has anything added or taken away in the process. An egg can be considered a whole food as well. A hard-boiled egg as a snack is better than processed egg whites from a carton that has salt added to it.

With a little preparation, you can take something like leftover chicken breast and turn it into a healthy chicken salad. Even cherry tomatoes make great little snacks you can pop into your mouth.

With a little effort, minimum time, and some creativity, incorporating whole foods into your diet should be a piece of cake.

ByAnxious Minds

Healthy Smoothie Ideas – Recipes that actually Taste Good

For several years now, the smoothie has been all the rage. However, some smoothies have good intentions but do not taste very good at all. As a matter of fact, the more healthy ingredients you have in a smoothie, sometimes the less taste there is to offer.

However, not all smoothies have to be full of high sugar fruits or bitter vegetables. If you combine the right ingredients that are personal favourites of yours, then you can come up with a win/win combination. You can experiment until you find the smoothie that is right for you.

Strawberries and Bananas An All-Time Smoothie Classic

This is your basic smoothie recipe for those who have never made their own smoothie. It is a great way to start off your experimenting. This smoothie has a nice sweet flavour thanks to the banana and strawberries and also includes vitamins – as well as a bit of protein.

You donít need a fancy food processor either; a simple blender will do the trick. Use one banana, one cup of low-fat milk, a cup of ice, approximately 3/4 cup non-fat yoghurt, and about six strawberries. Toss all the ingredients into the blender. Once you have had the courage to make and try your own smoothie, you will see how easy it is to add different ingredients and even try it with some vegetables, perhaps some spinach or carrots.

Of course, if you are looking for added fibre in your diet, then you have to consider what foods or additives contain fibre and add them to your smoothie.

Mixed Berry Smoothie

For this smoothie, you will need approximately one cup of fresh or frozen berries. Strawberries, blackberries, and raspberries are naturally high in fibre and when added to your smoothie can give you the added boost of fibre that you are seeking without the awful taste of some fibre alternatives. Add about 1/2 cup of non-fat yoghurt and 1/2 cup non-fat milk to your berries with some ice and blend away.

Another great idea is to add peanut butter, all natural of course, to your smoothie mixture. Peanut butter that is all natural is a great source of fibre and tastes great. Of course, if there are any sort of peanut allergies, peanut butter is obviously not the way to go.

Depending on your taste buds and how far you are willing to experiment, you can always try to add things such as flaxseed (properly ground up) or some wheat grass. Adding honey to these smoothies might help offset the taste of these ingredients while still offering you the added fibre you need.

ByAnxious Minds

Healthy Aspects of a Vegan Diet

With all the antibiotics found in today’s meat products, as well as things such as fillers, additives, and chemicals, many individuals are considering making the switch to a vegan diet.

Of course, when making any kind of change, all aspects of that change need exploring. There are many healthy aspects of a vegan diet.

* In earlier days, vegan diets consisted of only vegetables. This is not the case today, however. Vegan diets now include meat-free items such as veggie burgers and veggie hot dogs. Some companies are now developing vegetarian products such as “steak strips” or “chicken nuggets.”

* Going out to eat for a vegetarian used to be a cause for concern. Variety was non-existent or limited at best. Today, however, almost every restaurant has a completely vegan menu from which to choose.

* Studies have shown that eating a diet that is high in animal fats can lead to several diseases such as a higher risk of cancer and diabetes. Vegan diets exclude animal by-products, thereby eliminating these risks.

* Articles have appeared showing that eating a diet that is based on plants can reduce the risk and possibly even reverse the progression of chronic illnesses.

* Vegan diets have been shown to reduce cholesterol.

* Vegan diets can be high in protein through eating foods such as nuts and beans.

* Fiber is an extra-added bonus of the vegan diet as many vegetables are naturally high in fibre.

* Another positive aspect of a vegan diet is the mental health benefit, so to speak. Vegans do not use or wear anything that is based on an animal by-product. For example, a true vegan does not purchase leather, some types of makeup and fur. This gives a vegan the feeling that they are positively contributing to a cause.

* Lower blood pressure, the risk of heart disease, and lower cholesterol is all healthy side effects of a vegan diet.

* Vitamins such as C and E as well as magnesium, iron and folic acid are found in plant-based foods in a vegan diet.

* Lower saturated fat, a lower obesity rate, and fewer calories are also benefits of a vegan diet.

As you can see, a plant-based vegan diet has many benefits for your health. Vegan diets also have the added bonus of variety. There are so many combinations of soy-based products and vegetables as well as meat-like foods such as veggie patties to keep you healthy and satisfied in your vegan endeavours.

ByAnxious Minds

Five Super Grains you Should Be Eating

Whole grains are extremely nutritious offering benefits such as:

* Maintaining weight
* Fighting off heart disease
* Keeping the cholesterol level low
* Maintaining regularity
* Keeping a healthy metabolism

Fibre, B vitamins, magnesium, and iron are just a few of the extra value-packed nutritional benefits of grains.

Many people are aware of the most common grains but may not be as privy to the ones that are a little more unusual. If you are aware of the power that these grains pack, you would be sure to include them in your daily diet.

Quinoa

Quinoa is a grain that resembles a combination of grain and rice. The history of quinoa dates all the way back to the Inca civilization. The Incas considered it to be a sacred grain and for a very good reason. Quinoa is packed with protein. It is also full of fibre. Quinoa is a perfect way to start your morning, and the fibre will help you feel full for the day.

You can add things such as chicken broth and eat it for lunch, or add some honey and maple syrup with cinnamon for a tasty and nutritional-packed breakfast.

Spelt

Spelt is an older form of the wheat crop mainly found in Europe, but since it needs very little in the way of fertilizer, many who are interested in organic eating and growing are bringing this grain back into popularity again.

A great reason to eat spelt is, of course, its nutritional value – ranging from high in protein to high in fibre. Spelt has a deliciously sweet and nutty flavour that when used in bread instead of traditional grain gives it an extra added value in taste that cannot be replicated.

Kasha

Kasha is a traditional Russian meal that once was only used for fancy occasions such as royal feasts and weddings. The Russians knew what they were doing when they served kasha. As roasted, hulled buckwheat, kasha holds the mother load of nutrients and vitamins such as potassium, calcium, B vitamins, phosphorus, and iron. Incorporating this grain into your diet offers you a one-two punch for your immune system.

Chia

Just like the Incas and their quinoa, the ancient Aztecs knew that chia was a powerful substance and main staple for their diet. Chia is super packed with Omega 3s, loaded with protein, and one of the lowest carbohydrate grains. For this reason, many athletes are turning to chia as part of their daily winning game. Being high in antioxidants increases the value of chia in your diet as well.

Amaranth

The ancient Aztecs also knew that this grain was valuable to them. They not only included it in their everyday diets but also offered it as part of various rituals and ceremonies. Plant proteins, amino acids, lysine, calcium, and iron, as well as a high fibre content, make this particular grain the one that has it all.

As you can see, ancient cultures knew that these grains packed everything they needed to be warriors of their time. We have these grains available to us today and can achieve the same goal of being warriors throughout our day as well.

ByAnxious Minds

Five Natural Foods that Promote Weight Loss

With so many over-the-counter supplements, diet pills, and weight loss remedies, it is easy to get confused and overwhelmed. Worse yet, most of those weight-loss remedies are full of chemicals that can be harmful to the immune system. While the may offer a quick fix, chances are that the weight will come back on just as quickly.

However, you can turn toward food, natural foods that is, to promote weight loss and help keep it off. By turning to natural foods, not only do you lose the weight, you also increase your metabolism and boost your health. With these benefits in tow, why not explore these five natural foods that you can add to your diet to promote and keep off that weight?

1. Salad. While not everyone loves the greens when you look at the multitude of benefits a green, leafy salad has to offer, you might just change your tune. Salads, especially those with green leafy spinach, can provide antioxidants such as vitamins A, E, and C while giving you extra folate as well. The beauty in a salad, however, comes in the creation. A salad can be anything you want it to be. You can add sunflower seeds, chicken, or even fruit like tangerines.

2. Good old-fashioned chicken soup For many years, studies have shown that chicken soup has all the ingredients to boost your immune system, shorten the duration of a cold, and help promote weight loss. The reasoning behind the weight loss seems to be the fact that soup simply fills you up. And, when you fill up your soup with beans for fibre and chicken for protein along with vegetables for antioxidants, you are naturally and effortlessly achieving many weight-loss goals. If your stomach is feeling full, you are less likely to binge.

3. Lean beef and chicken Beef that is lean can promote weight loss as it provides the right amount of protein that a dieter needs. Also, amino acids found in extra lean beef can assist with losing weight and maintaining muscle mass. Chicken, with the skin removed, is low in fat, high in protein and tastes great too. Meat and chicken can always be added to a salad for an all-around weight-loss benefit.

4. Oats and whole grains. The fibre in oats and whole grains offer a full and satisfying feeling, which in turn allows you the opportunity to eat less. Rolled oats and those that have the least processing done to them are the most beneficial as they are all-natural and fill you up quickly and healthily.

5. Eating beans such as kidney, lentil, and cannellini offer the benefits of fibre and protein all rolled into one. Beans can be eaten in a fajita mixed with lean beef or chicken, or made into a healthy casserole or even tossed into a salad.

Not only are these foods ideal for losing weight, they are tasty and versatile as well.

ByAnxious Minds

Five Healthy Foods that make you feel great

Isn’t it amazing that there are hundreds upon hundreds of over-the-counter medications for every possible ailment, ache, pain, and mood – and yet many people still do not look to food as their source of power?

Mother Nature knew exactly what she was doing when she provided us with all that we need for a healthy, well-balanced diet and the tools that we need to get through our day, our week, and our lifetime.

While every food has its benefits, here are the five most worth mentioning:

1.The white meat found in chicken contains the essential vitamins B12, B6, and B3. Chicken can assist in lowering your risk of stroke and also boost your mood. Chicken is low in fat (especially with the skin removed) and high in protein. Besides all the nutritional benefits, chicken is so versatile; it can be cooked in so many ways using a variety of tools such as the outdoor grill or an indoor rotisserie. And the B vitamins provide a host of benefits such as:

* Fighting off anaemia
* Maintaining healthy blood cells
* Warding off heart disease
* Increasing energy
* Boosting the immune system
* Converting carbohydrates into energy

2. Broccoli and salads especially salads made with leaf spinach have many benefits. Broccoli contains vitamins A, C, and E while spinach provides folate, which helps to maintain and produce newer healthier cells for the body. Vitamins such as A, C, and E help to boost the immune system; this could mean less time off sick and shorter duration of ailments such as the common cold.

3. Bananas For a sweet treat at any time during the day, reach for a banana. The benefits of a banana are numerous. You can choose to eat a banana as it is, or you can add it to a yoghurt or a bowl of multi-grain cereal. Either way, you will gain the benefit of a quick energy boost that sustains you for several hours along with the mood-altering benefit of the B6 vitamin that bananas are rich in. In addition, they taste good too!

4. Dark chocolate The good news is that good quality, dark chocolate has many benefits to help make you feel great. The cocoa in chocolate has heart-healthy benefits such as lowering your cholesterol and reducing heart disease. That is not all; dark chocolate can lift your mood significantly with its tryptophan and magnesium. Grabbing a piece of high-quality dark chocolate will not only help your heart, it will also help your mind.

5. Whole grains have been found to contain selenium which has been shown to significantly reduce depression. Whole grain slices of bread with your favourite spread or even an all-natural peanut butter provide fibre, selenium, and protein. The nice thing about whole grains is that you can mix and match whole grain bread with different spreads and come out with a variety of healthy foods that make you feel great in the end.