Enjoy A Healthy lifestyle With Variety Of Vegetables

Many people are unsure how to use vegetables more effectively as part of their diet, but it may be easier than you think to provide yourself and your family with healthy, nutritious meals at great prices!
  One way to create wonderful meals that are healthier than ever is to take a stroll through the produce section of your local grocery store.
Most major grocery store chains have huge produce sections, containing a wonderful variety of fruits and vegetables from all corners of the world.
  Trying a variety of different fruits and vegetables is a great way to keep your meals interesting and exciting in addition to nutritious. It is all too easy to become bored when trying to follow a healthy diet, and boredom can lead people to abandon their healthy habits.
Avoiding diet burnout is important to the long-term survival of even the most sensible eating plan.
So if you’ve never had vegetables like collard greens, asparagus or kale before, why not give them a try.
  Not only can trying new things allow you to make great new discoveries, but it can increase your level of fitness as well. Leafy green vegetables like spinach, broccoli, and kale are rich sources of many important vitamins, minerals, and other micronutrients.
Another great way to increase the variety of vegetables you enjoy is to combine fresh, frozen and canned vegetables. While fresh vegetables are generally better and healthier, frozen and canned vegetables can be great alternatives for when the fresh varieties are out of season.
One of the best things about fresh fruits and vegetables is the great variety of flavors, colors, and textures available. Eating a variety of different colored vegetables and fruits does much more than provide much-needed variety. It also provides a great variety of nutrients.
For instance, yellow and orange fruits and vegetables tend to be very high in beta carotene, while green leafy vegetables are often great sources of calcium and other important nutrients.
  So why not spice up your plain old green salad with a splash of color in the form of yellow peppers or orange carrot slices?
Many people wrongly think that they can make up for a crappy diet by using vitamin and mineral supplements. This mistaken belief is apparently very widespread since sales of these supplements continue to break records.
When considering vitamin and mineral supplements, however, it is important to remember that foods contain many different minerals, trace elements, and other micronutrients.
  That means that for every nutrient that has been discovered and synthesized, there may be ten, twenty or more of these micronutrients that have yet to be fully understood. That is why no vitamin supplement, no matter how complete, can truly replace a healthy, balanced diet.
In addition, vitamin and mineral supplements are quite a bit more expensive than a good selection of vegetables and fruits, and not nearly as tasty.
When changing your diet and eating for a healthier lifestyle, it is important to educate yourself about eating right and go choose the right fruits and vegetables for your tastes. After all, the best diet is the one you can follow for the rest of your life.
One of the best ways to start eating a healthy diet is to choose the freshest fruits and vegetables.
Not only do fresh fruits and vegetables taste better, but they are less expensive and more nutritious as well. Choosing a variety of in-season fruits and vegetables every week is a great way to enjoy healthy and varied meals.
Of course, your favorite fruits and vegetables will not always be in season, so it will sometimes be necessary to supplement those fresh fruits and vegetables with canned and frozen varieties.
  When choosing canned fruits, try to avoid those packed in syrup; choose canned fruits packed in fruit juice or water instead. They will be healthier and contain less sugar.
Adding fresh fruit, such as apple slices, mandarin oranges, nectarines and the like is a great way to make plain salads more interesting and more delicious.

By Bryan Stefanov

Bryan Stefanov PhotoTrying a variety of different fruits and vegetables is a great way to keep your meals interesting and exciting in addition to nutritious. Read more at Recipes Pinterest

Guided Meditation – Path to Physical And Mental Well-being

If stress and anxiety are taking over your life, you should get help of guided meditation as your stress management resource.
  Learn how to meditate and free your mind of worries in order to lead a healthy and peaceful life.The high-speed lifestyle that all of us lead today doesn’t leave us much of choice other than juggling a number of tasks. Some of your time is spent enlisting the jobs that are needed to be done, some carrying out the jobs and the rest in worrying about the ones that you weren’t able to finish. All this leaves you stressed out. Meditation is a great way to shift your focus from anxiety to peace. It is a complementary medicine that cures all three, mind, body and soul of a person. Meditation can help you release stress and lead a happy and peaceful life.s

By providing a state of relaxation, it helps you remove the troubled thoughts that cloud your mind and cause stress.

Moreover, it helps you focus your attention resulting in improved physical and metal well-being. Studies have found that meditation is beneficial in treating various health conditions that are worsened by stress. Some of them are high blood pressure, chronic pain, fatigue, sleeping habits, depression and others. Furthermore, it also helps you control your anger and anxiety.

 

When you meditate, all your tensions seem to go away. Releasing stress isn’t just limited to the meditation session, it gradually eliminates the stress from your life given that you practice it on a regular basis.

The true profoundness of meditation lies in the stability that you develop overtime. It helps you lead a life that remains unperturbed by anxiety and stress. Though difficulties will still come along at times, you will be able to handle them with much ease and won’t be troubled by negative thoughts.

 

The technique of meditation requires much practicing and can be mastered overtime.

For learning to meditate, however, you need the guidance of an expert. Searching online is the easiest way to find an experienced meditation practitioner. There are some experts who provide online podcast about meditation. From teaching you the basics as well as the latest findings on meditations, helping you achieve a relaxed state of mind to guided meditations for listening while you meditate, they share expert tips and help you find what works best for you to release tension.

Listening to a podcast is so much a better option for learning to meditate than reading about it. During a meditation podcast, you are guided by the soothing voice of a meditation expert to help you relax. Since your mind needs reason to be calm and peaceful, it should be preferred if someone guides you, taking your mind off the worries and helping you find inspiration to feel fresh and relaxed. You need someone who holds years of experience in meditation to free you of your stress.

Besides the online meditation podcast, several clinics also hold meditation sessions where you can join meditation gurus as well as others coping with stress.

Find one such clinic in your city and take an action against the stress that continues to rise. Don’t wait until you have a breakdown! Contact a clinical psychologist who specializes in meditation to help you control your stress before your body goes into a tailspin.

What’s Better For You and the Planet – Almond Milk or Cow’s Milk? Here Are the Facts

It is human nature to be wary of change.

It is the reason many of us remain in less-than-perfect situations, be it our jobs, our homes, or our friend circles, when we know that there are better options for us out there. Regardless of resistance, evolution, even cultural evolution, insists that we change for the better – or get dragged along with change. Take our food system, for instance. Over the past few decades, we have been given clues that our food system is in need of some major revamping. After all, animal agriculture is hardly humane for animals, has some major negative effects on the environment, and produces meat and dairy, which is not that good for our health and can barely feed the world’s population. Luckily, as more innovators have become aware of the reality of our food system and of the demand people have for actual wholesome food, they have created a plethora of alternatives for meat, cheese, and milk.

Almond milk, for example, is rising as one of the most popular plant-based milks around. According to a study from Nielsen, in the past five years alone, sales of almond milk have grown 250 percent to more than $894.6 million.

  With figures like these, and the dairy industry not doing too hot themselves, we think it’s safe to say that dairy’s days are numbered. As we mentioned before, however, there will always be people who are resistant to change and will try to talk down the benefits of alternatives. While many have celebrated almond milkfor its delicious flavor, nutritional benefits, and lesser environmental impact, others have tried to water down how much better almond milk actually is than dairy milk, on several different levels. 

For instance, take a recent article published in Mic, that is basically aimed at tearing almond milk down from its pedestal and hoisting milk back onto it.

While we definitely give the article an “A” for … erm … effort (?), it’s clear that the writer has done about half of the research required and from that half, cherrypicked stats and statements that make almond milk sound bad. It’s okay, here at One Green Planet, we’re used to this kind of thing. We know people grew up drinking warm glasses of milk to go to sleep, seeing their fave celebs with milk mustaches, and leaving some milk and cookies out for Santa. As intertwined as milk is with culture, however, that doesn’t make it immune to criticism and believe us, there is plenty to criticize. So, we figured we would set the record straight and let everyone know just how milk and almond milk stack up against each other.

It Takes a Lot of Water to Produce Almond Milk, but Dairy is Still Worse

Considering this is one of the few valid points we found in the article, we’ll just get this one out of the way first. Yes, it takes quite a bit of water to produce almond milk, but when you really look into it, dairy is still worse. Specifically, it requires 30 gallons of water to produce one gallon of milk – in comparison, it only requires 23 gallons of water to produce a gallon of almond milk. While, yes, this does seem like a startling amount of water to be used for a teeny tiny almond, let’s not forget that the average dairy farm uses 3.4 million gallons of water … per day. This water is used to hydrate cows and clean milking parlor walls, floors, and equipment. So… pretty much don’t point fingers when your hands are dirty. 

The Livestock Industry is Poisoning the Air, the Almond Industry Isn’t

Once the water usage statistic is out of the way, it’s pretty clear to see how much more destructive the livestock industry is. To begin, the cattle on dairy and meat farms are poisoning the air. Don’t blame the cattle, though, they aren’t doing it on purpose, they’re simply doing what they need to do, and what they need to do is fart, burp, and eventually, move their bowels. All of these actions release methane, a greenhouse gas that has the ability to trap up to 100 times more heat into the atmosphere and trap dangerous, poisonous gases when in the sludge of manure. So, essentially, cows are accelerating climate change just with their bodily functions. Yikes. Not to mention, methane and the plethora of other gasses released by manure are incredibly poisonous for humans to breathe when it is highly concentrated – we recently saw a case where a dairy farmer and a number of cows were killedbecause of exposure toxic vapors – and this is hardly the first case of its kind.

The Livestock Industry is Also Ruining Our Oceans and Lakes

Now, while we’re on the topic of cow defecation, let’s talk about where this sludge ends up. In the U.S. alone, livestock produce 130 times more waste than humans. We’ve seen water on farms turn putrid because of the excessive manure dumping and sadly, this water has claimed the lives of some dairy farmers over the years. Toxic algal blooms and dead zones have started springing up all over the U.S. because of fecal run-off which threatens not only the lives of marine animals but of humans in the surrounding area who depend on the water. So, basically, supporting the dairy industry is giving them the green light to dump more poop into our waters. Not exactly the kind of thing anyone wants to be supporting (we hope).

Dairy Doesn’t Measure Up to Almond Milk Nutritionally 

Now the writer of the Mic article claims that all almond milk is basically sugar water with weird additives and that milk “offers a lot more.” If by “a lot more” you mean antibiotics andhormones, than yes, milk certainly offers a lot more. However, as with any sector in food, there are going to be some products that are better than others. Yes, there are some almond milks that have added sugar, carageenan (which may or may not be the best for you) and only usestwo percent almonds. But there are also almond milks on the market, like Califia Farms Almond Milk, that are very wholesome. The only thing milk has going for it is their whole calcium shtick. And considering the fact that there are about a billion other foods that provide calcium, we’d say that milk is all but useless.

We Deserve Better

We know that change can sometimes be hard, but when we take a hard look at our food system it is clear that we are in dire need of change. The meat and dairy industries are infrastructures that do not leave much room for improvement. Sure, farmers can let the cows roam around for a bit before slaughter and they can possibly lower the amount of antibiotics given to cows, but there are major problems in this industry that are simply ingrained in the system and cannot be changed. Cows will always defecate, they will always have to drink water, and their bodies will always take up land. These are facts we simply cannot change. Sure, almond milk may not be the absolute best product in the entire world, but is it better than dairy milk? You bet.

If you want to learn more about the positive impact that choosing a dairy-free, plant-based milk alternative can have on the planet, join One Green Planet’s #EatForThePlanet movement – and to find some great products to try, check out the Future of Food.

 

From Veronica Chavez     At    WWW.ONEGREENPLANET.ORG

7 Reasons Why You Should Be Using Coconut Oil

It is a common misconception that coconut oil is bad for you.

People all over the world are experiencing the healthy benefits of using coconut oil. It is actually one of the healthiest oils you can consume. Here are the top seven reasons why you should use coconut oil as an alternative to other common cooking oils.

1. Coconut oil doesn’t turn to fat in your body.

Unlike many other common oils, like soy (vegetable) and corn, coconut oil won’t make you fat. Coconut oil contains medium-chain triglycerides (MCT), which are an easy fuel for the body to burn, without turning to fat. Most other cooking oils and fats contain long-chain triglycerides (LCT). LCT’s are usually stored as fat. Since coconut oil is a MCT, it is more easily absorbed and converted to energy quicker.

People in the tropics have relied on coconuts as a traditional staple in their diet for centuries. They consume large amounts of coconut oil every day. Instead of getting fatter, it helps them stay healthy, lean and trim. When they switch from coconut oil to our modern oils, they develop obesity and the health problems that our modern society faces.

Some other people who have known this truth for a long time are people who are in the animal feed business. When livestock are fed vegetable oils, they put on weight and produce more fatty meat. When they are fed coconut oil, they become very lean.

2. Coconut oil increases your metabolism.

Not only does coconut oil convert to energy quicker in your body, it increases your metabolism, which promotes weight loss. Because it boosts your metabolism, it helps your body burn fat more effectively.

Coconut oil may triple your calorie burn. Since coconut oil is a MCT, it is converted to energy so quickly that it creates a lot of heat. In a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, MCT’s burn three times more calories for six hours after a meal than LCT’s.

The February 15, 2005 issue of Woman’s World magazine stated that coconut oil is the “underground high-metabolism secret.”

This is great news for people who have thyroid problems, since coconut oil improves sluggish thyroids by stimulating the production of extra thyroid hormones. Most other common oils, like vegetable (soy) and corn have been shown to inhibit thyroid function.

3. Coconut oil has omega 3 fatty acids.

Most cooking oils contain omega 6 fatty acids, something we get way too much of in the United States. Our omega 6 to omega 3 ratio should be 1:1 but it is more like 50:1. We need to drastically cut back our omega 6 oils and consume much more omega 3 oils to be healthy. And coconut oil is filled with these healthy omega 3 fatty acids.

4. Coconut oil gives you energy.

Because of the healthy omega 3 fatty acids and the fact that it increases the metabolism, most people that switch to coconut oil feel a burst of added energy in their daily life.

This is because coconut oil is nature’s richest source of medium-chain triglycerides (MCT’s), which increase metabolic rates and lead to weight loss. MCT’s promote thermogenesis, which increases the body’s metabolism, producing energy.

This is because coconut oil is nature’s richest source of medium-chain triglycerides (MCT’s), which increase metabolic rates and lead to weight loss. MCT’s promote thermogenesis, which increases the body’s metabolism, producing energy. Many people with chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia have found that adding coconut and coconut oil to their diet was helpful to them.

5. One of the best things you can use on your skin and hair is coconut oil.

Coconut oil one of the best things you can apply directly on your skin and hair. It gives temporary relief to skin problems like rashes. It aids in healing and restoring skin to a younger appearance. It has also been known to help with people who suffer from yeast infections in the skin, as well as many other skin problems.

Not only does is soften and smooth your skin, coconut oil has antioxidant properties that protect the skin from free radical damage. Coconut oil makes excellent massage oil too.

6. Coconut oil has healthy benefits that most other oils do not.

Evidence is mounting that coconut oil has anti-fungal, anti-bacterial and anti-viral effects when both consumed and used topically on the skin.

Most oils oxidize and turn rancid very quickly causing free radical damage in our bodies. Coconut oil is not easily oxidized and does not cause harmful free radical damage like polyunsaturated vegetable oils. Free radical damage is thought to be responsible for many ailments in our body from arthritis to increased susceptibility to cancers.

Coconut oil also helps our bodies absorb other nutrients more effectively, such as Vitamin E.

7. Coconut oil is one of the best oils you can use for cooking.

It has a higher smoke point than olive oil, which means it can take higher temperatures better. There are several healthy omega 3 oils we can choose to consume, such as flax and olive oil, but they don’t do well under the high heat we use for cooking. Coconut oil can be used in higher cooking temperatures.

It is harder for coconut oil to go rancid, unlike other cooking oils, which are usually rancid long before you even bring them home. Rancid oils cause free radical damage in the body, which is a leading cause of cancer. Coconut oil is stable for over a year at room temperature.

Because of the misinformation we have been given for years, we have lost out on the healthy benefits that coconut oil has given the people of the tropics for centuries. But now it has been rediscovered! Coconut oil is so effective, it won’t be long before we see coconut oil supplements promoted, but you can get the jump on the popular crowd and start consuming and cooking with coconut oil today!

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