EGGS: Good or bad for you…the debate continues.

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“Egg yolks contain 240mg of leucine, the amino acid single-handedly responsible for flipping your genetic muscle-building switch.” To become stronger you need to build muscle…more muscle will burn more calories…a combination of eating healthy food and strength training will have you standing up straighter, feeling stronger, feeling more confident and eliminating unwanted muffin tops! Before and after exercising remember to hydrate… and eat some protein!
Read more in this great article:
http://www.livestrong.com/article/556213-nutrition-debate-are-eggs-good-for-you/#ixzz2W1DfV91R

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DELICIOUS NUT BUTTERS

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I LOVE peanut butter. I eat it almost everyday, yet every once in a while I wish I had another yummy spread to put on rice cakes, rice crackers or celery. Other nut butters are a perfect alternative to peanut butter. In this article http://www.cookinglight.com/food/recipe-finder/nut-butter-primer-00400000040041/ from Cooking Light, eight different nut butter recipes are given. In addition to using the nuts right out of the shell, I have toasted them prior to creating the nut butter, for another layer of flavor. What is your favorite?

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ONE OF A KIND VEGETABLE SOUP

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Cold winter days often bring the need for warmth and comfort food. Many years ago I came across the perfect recipe to provide both. The recipe, by Curtis Aikens, is basically a recipe outline with a way to include your family’s personal favorites. It is one of my favorite recipes and never disappoints! It is simmering on the stove as I write and the aroma is fabulous!
http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/curtis-aikens/curtis-aikens-abc-soup-recipe/index.htmlToday I added sweet potatoes and black beans to the vegetables. I used rosemary, roasted cumin, turmeric, and herbes de provence. I also used some vegetable stock as the vegetables I used today didn’t provide enough broth. The sweet potatoes were a wonderful addition, they provided a delicate sweetness to compliment the herbs and spices.

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CARROTS!!!

IMG_0580Carrots are chock full of vitamins A, C, B6, and thiamin, and in minerals manganese, niacin, and potassium. Carrots contain no cholesterol and are very high in fiber…and they taste soooo good! Sometimes the lowly carrot needs to be the star player… Enjoy!
http://hipfoodiemom.com/2012/10/07/roasted-carrot-and-red-quinoa-salad-for-sundaysupper/

and

http://www.virtuallyhomemade.com/2012/11/silver-palate-carrot-orange-soup.html

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SUPER SIMPLE, SUPER DELCIOUS, SUPER HEALTHY

The vegetable of the day is cauliflower… with the added bonus of ginger, turmeric and mustard seeds! Simple, straight forward food served hot on a cold winter night always tastes great!
CAULIFLOWER is LOW in calories, and a great source for vitamin C, B-complex vitamins, manganese, copper, iron, calcium and potassium. It is low in sodium and has virtually no fat, and no cholesterol.
http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/bobby-flay/oven-roasted-cauliflower-with-turmeric-and-ginger-recipe/index.html”

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KEEP MOVING!

Both aerobic and strengthening activities are beneficial to overall good health. Aerobic activities speed your heart rate and breathing as they help improve heart and lung fitness. Aerobic activities will also help reduce anxiety and depression. Strengthening activities will help build and maintain bones and muscles. Stretching exercises will help maintain and increase flexibility. It is important as we grow older to set exercise goals to help slow down the natural aging process of losing muscle strength and joint flexibility.
Set FOUR goals today: 1. When available use stairs instead of an escalator 2. When rising from a chair or couch don’t push off with your hands, use your legs to become upright. 3. ALWAYS remind yourself to stand up straight, shoulders back! 4. Walk. Go for a walk every day. A walk will clear your mind, expose you to the sun for vitamin D absorption, get your metabolism going and generally make you feel great!

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HEARTY VEGETARIAN MEALS

In honor of World Vegetarian Day, Clean Eating Magazine gathered and posted TEN delicious, hearty, vegetarian meals. Enjoy!!!

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PUMPKINS-PACKED WITH NUTRIENTS!

It’s fall and the sugar pumpkins are just calling out – buy me, buy me. I have and have made some delicious soup!!
1 serving size=1 cup=49 calories=245% of the daily recommendation of vitamin A=19% of the daily recommendation of vitamin C
In addition, pumpkin is a good source of Vitamin E, Thiamin, Niacin, Vitamin B6, Folate, Iron, Magnesium and Phosphorus AND it has 0% cholesterol…and the best part is it is DELICIOUS!
It’s fall which to me means soup time! Here is my absolute favorite pumpkin soup, chock full of vitamins and minerals and warmth…a great comfort food.
PEANUT BUTTER PUMPKIN SOUP
The New Basics by Julee Russo and Sheila Lukins
tweaked by me
4 cups of pureed pumpkin (fresh or canned)*
2 cups cooked pureed sweet potato
1 cup smooth peanut butter(freshly made is the best)
6 cups of chicken or vegetable broth
1 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
Snipped fresh chives, for garnish
Roasted pumpkin seeds, for garnish

1. Stir together the pumpkin, sweet potatoes and peanut butter.
2. Add the stock and pepper and stir until smooth.
3. Simmer and cook for 45 minutes.
4. Before serving add garnish.
As with many soups, it is better the second day. ENJOY!
* From allrecipes.com Fresh Pumpkin
Cut the pumpkin in half and discard the stem section and stringy pulp. Save the seeds to dry and roast
In a shallow baking dish, place the two halves face down and cover with foil
Bake in a preheated 375 degrees F (190 degrees C) oven for about 1½ hours for a medium-sized sugar pumpkin, or until tender
Once the baked pumpkin has cooled, scoop out the flesh and puree or mash it
For silky smooth custards or soups, press the pumpkin puree through a sieve.

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AN APPLE A DAY!

It’s fall. It’s apple picking time! Apples are pretty, they usher in fall and the health benefits are numerous. The Mother Nature Network has a fabulous article sharing with us why we need to eat that apple each and every day!
http://www.mnn.com/food/healthy-eating/stories/10-reasons-to-eat-an-apple-a-day
Here are some other ways to eat apples.
APPLESAUCE
Quarter and remove the core of 6 large apples
Place in pot with a small amount of water.
Removing the skin and adding cinnamon is optional.
Simmer until apples fall apart. Mash to desired consistency.
Serve warm or cool.
BAKED APPLES
Core the apple. Place in small casserole dish. Add a small amount of apple juice, orange juice or water. Add cinnamon, nutmeg or allspice. Cover and bake at 350 for about 40 minutes.

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SUGAR

The topic of sugar has been in the news quite often these days. I love sugar and balk at all the articles which show sugar is terrible, just terrible for the human body, so it was with great interest that I read this article from June 2012 on the Bon Appetit magazine blog. There are certainly many ways in which to sweeten up a dish without white sugar or using artificial sweeteners and since I love figs and maple sugar with the same intensity as the white stuff I will begin changing some of my diet with them.
Sweeter Still: 7 Healthier, Natural Alternatives to White Sugar

http://www.bonappetit.com/blogsandforums/blogs/badaily/2012/06/alternative-sweeteners.html#ixzz22yUPpjau

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