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Superfoods
Easy to find foods to prevent diseases and boost immune system
Curated by Kelsey Dickens
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The Best Foods for Every Vitamin and Mineral | Yahoo! Health

The Best Foods for Every Vitamin and Mineral | Yahoo! Health | Superfoods | Scoop.it
Want to get your nutrients the natural way? We break down the best food sources for 20 of the most important.
Kelsey Dickens's insight:

Cold and flu season are in full swing! Boost your immune system the natural way and eat a variety of whole grains, fruits, vegetables, nuts/seeds and fish!

 

-Kelsey at www.kelseydickens.com

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Calories on Restaurant Menus Won't Make Us Eat Less -- But Here's One Thing That Might - Forbes

Calories on Restaurant Menus Won't Make Us Eat Less -- But Here's One Thing That Might - Forbes | Superfoods | Scoop.it

Photo credit: Wikipedia After much foot-dragging by the restaurant industry, a new rule requiring chain restaurants display calorie counts on their menus is taking effect in the latter half of this year.

 

In January I posted an article from the Huffington Post about the launch of "Halfsies" and now it appears to be taking action! Restaurant chains are being forced to display caloric contents of food but this doesn't mean customers will necessarily eat less. "Halfsies" can partner with these restaurants and they will then only serve 1/2 of the portion of food for the same price. Then, the restaurant remits the savings from serving less food to "Halfsies", which donates it 60 percent to local hunger charities and 40 percent to global food relief organizations.

 

Diners still indulge but eat less and can feel good about the charitable donation they're making - win win overall.

 

-Kelsey at www.kelseydickens.com

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13 rules for dining out on a diet

13 rules for dining out on a diet | Superfoods | Scoop.it

Most people look forward to "date night" or "girls night out" on a weekly basis so how do you keep your diet in check while enjoying a delicious meal with loved ones? This article goes over some great tips to keep in mind when eating out at restaurants.

 

One of the most important things to keep in mind, in my opinion, is portion distortion. Splitting a meal with someone or only eating 1/2 of what you're served and taking the rest home is a sure fire way to decrease calorie consumption. Other tricks include checking the menu before you go, filling up on a salad or soup before eating your entree and asking for healthier preparation options such as grilled or baked items without butter.

 

-Kelsey at www.kelseydickens.com

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Wedding food: A new marriage of sustainable and trendy

Wedding food: A new marriage of sustainable and trendy | Superfoods | Scoop.it

"Out: A choice of chicken or fish. In: Miniature food buffets and food trucks."

 

Couples are becoming more health conscious and food savvy these days by ordering organic, seasonal and sustainable food to go along with their fabulous wedding receptions. According to the Washington Post, more couples are serving mini desserts and buffet style dinners than multi-layered wedding cakes and a sit-down dinners complete with red meat, starchy potatoes and vegetables smothered in butter. Can this new trend become beneficial to the economy as well as diet friendly AND taste bud friendly at the same time? Let's hope so!

 

-Kelsey at www.kelseydickens.com

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June Seasonal Foods at WomansDay.com - Fruits and Vegetables in Season

June Seasonal Foods at WomansDay.com - Fruits and Vegetables in Season | Superfoods | Scoop.it

"Want to know an easy way to save at the grocery store? Then try shopping for seasonal foods. Fruits and vegetables that are in season cost less!"

 

Summertime is the BEST time to find a variety of fruits and vegetables in season! And what's even better, seasonal foods costs less - so stalk up and get healthy this summer!

 

Fruits in season for June: Apricots, blueberries, cherries, kiwi, peaches, nectarines, strawberries and watermelon.

 

Vegetables in season for June: Beets, corn, green beans and yellow squash.

 

July is right around the corner! Here are some more seasonal fruits and vegetables for July: Cantaloupe, figs, plums, cucumbers, tomatoes and zucchini.

 

 

- Kelsey at www.kelseydickens.com

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HBO: The Weight of the Nation: Films: Bonus Short: Poverty and Obesity: When Healthy Food Isn't an Option

HBO: The Weight of the Nation: Films: Bonus Short: Poverty and Obesity: When Healthy Food Isn't an Option | Superfoods | Scoop.it
The official site for The Weight of the Nation on HBO. Watch the Bonus Short: Poverty and Obesity: When Healthy Food Isn't an Option.

 

Watch this powerful short documentary to find out more about how poverty directly influences obesity and the development of diabetes.

 

Quick FACTS:

- 2/3 of adult Americans are overweight or obese

- Over 18% of American children are obese

- 1 out of 10 American adults have diabetes, and 1 out of 5 adult Americans that did not graduate high school have diabetes

- Of the 10 states with the highest obesity rates, 9 rank among our nation's poorest

 

---Kelsey at www.kelseydickens.com

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In Wake of New York Soda Ban Proposal, Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Encourages Education, Moderation

In Wake of New York Soda Ban Proposal, Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Encourages Education, Moderation | Superfoods | Scoop.it

"New York City has announced plans to ban the sale of sodas and other sugary beverages larger than 16 ounces in restaurants and entertainment venues." Although this may or may not be a positive step towards battling the obesity epidemic, Americans must also educate themselves on healthy eating habits. Reducing consumption of sugary beverages like soda and increasing consumption of healthier beverages like water or low-fat milk are better options. Replacing sugary drinks with healthier options will almost guarantee weight loss and lead to a overall healthier lifestyle!

 

-Kelsey at www.kelseydickens.com

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Good night's sleep contributes to healthy eating!

Good night's sleep contributes to healthy eating! | Superfoods | Scoop.it

"Here's a new spin on the saying, 'If you snooze you lose.'..." According to this article in the Health section of the Chicago Tribune, leading researchers at Harvard have found that lack of sleep leads to poor dietary choices. High fat, salty foods are easy to grab when you're feeling drowsy. Instead, get a good night's sleep and increase your capability of choosing healthier snacks throughout the day!

 

-Kelsey at www.kelseydickens.com

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Exercise, Eat Right and Get Rid of Stress to Boost Your Immune System

Exercise, Eat Right and Get Rid of Stress to Boost Your Immune System | Superfoods | Scoop.it

"Elevated levels of cortisol over time can lead to resistance and affect the body's immune response to infections like the common cold and [flu]." This article published by the NY times describes how the body reacts to stress - and constant stress may be the root of a weak immune system.

 

I speak from experience when it comes to stress and sickness. I get hit by that "bug" going around when I allow myself to become overly stressed. Life is stressful but we must learn how to alleviate that stress - our health depends on it. So what do I do?

 

Get out and exercise! Physical activity allows the body to release more endorphins that make us feel good and help us get rid of our frustration and stress that we tie up in our mind and body. Whether you like to jog, dance, take spin classes or walk your dog, getting your body in motion is the best type of free therapy there is - so get moving!

 

Certain superfoods pack a powerful punch of immune boosting anti-oxidants, so in addition to exercise, eating right is another important component to decreasing stress. Fill up your plate with a rainbow of colors. Bright colorful fruits and vegetables contain the highest amounts of vitamins, minerals and other essential nutrients that are healthy, make you feel good and provide you with the energy you need to get moving and release that stress!

 

-Kelsey at www.kelseydickens.com

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Surprisingly Salty Processed Foods

Surprisingly Salty Processed Foods | Superfoods | Scoop.it

"The average person in the U.S. consumes 3,500 milligrams of sodium a day. That’s equivalent to almost 9 grams of salt, more than the 2,300 milligrams per day suggested by the Dietary Guidelines for Americans."

 

Where does all of this excess salt come from? It's most likely NOT from your salt shaker. Processed foods account for around 77% of the salt in our diets.

 

So which processed foods have the highest amounts, (meaning more than 150 milligrams per serving) of sodium (salt)? Obvious foods include frozen pizza or other frozen meals, soup and beef jerky. But what about bread? Cereal? Cake mix?

 

That's right! Pepperidge Farm pumpernickel bread, for example, contains 190 milligrams of sodium per serving - 1 slice of bread! Kellog's Raisin Bran contains 350 milligrams of sodium for 1 cup of cereal! And Duncan Hines moist deluxe devil's food cake contains 380 milligrams of sodium for 1 serving of cake!

 

Make sure to read the nutrition label to see how much sodium your favorite processed foods have and try to eat 2,300 milligrams of sodium or less everyday. *Especially if you have a family history of high blood pressure, heart disease, cancer  or obesity.

 

Check out this article from health.com for more hidden salt traps:

http://www.health.com/health/gallery/0,,20365078,00.html

 

 

-Kelsey at www.kelseydickens.com

 

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Trying to eat more veggies? Make a smoothie! Try any one of these 5 recipes

Trying to eat more veggies? Make a smoothie! Try any one of these 5 recipes | Superfoods | Scoop.it

Smoothies are usually made by blending juicy fruit, juice and yogurt together for a tasty treat. But what if you add some fresh veggies to that sweet mixture?

 

The result is a nutrient packed, low calorie, high protein meal or snack! This article from NY times lists 5 recipes made with ingredients like arugula, beets, carrots, cabbage, almonds and walnuts. Each of these smoothies provides essential vitamins and minerals like vitamin C, A, beta carotene and manganese.

 

Try one of these veggie smoothie recipes and make sure to add raw walnuts or almonds and plain Greek yogurt for that extra boost of protein:

 

http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/03/02/beets-arugula-make-a-smoothie/?ref=health

 

-Kelsey at www.kelseydickens.com

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Yogurt Dipped Strawberries - Delicious Energy Boost!

Yogurt Dipped Strawberries - Delicious Energy Boost! | Superfoods | Scoop.it

Recipe:

- Strawberries, halved or whole (you can keep the stem on for easier dipping)

- Plain Greek yogurt

 

Wash and dry strawberries, dip strawberries in Greek yogurt, then place on a pan lined with wax or parchment paper and put in the freezer. Fast & easy, nutritious & delicious snack!

 

Health benefits:

Strawberries ARE a super food! They are rich in vitamin C & K, fiber and potassium. Greek yogurt is a great source of protein and calcium and is a lot thicker and creamier than regular yogurt. Use plain Greek yogurt in this recipe because it has less sugar than flavored yogurts (only around 6 grams of sugar in plain Greek yogurt vs around 20 grams of sugar in other flavored yogurts) and you'll still get the sweetness you crave from the fresh strawberries!

*Strawberries are in season during the Spring months of March-May

 

Enjoy!

 

-Kelsey at www.kelseydickens.com

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Breast Cancer Screening Matters, but Prevention Is the Real Goal

Breast Cancer Screening Matters, but Prevention Is the Real Goal | Superfoods | Scoop.it

"Perhaps too much emphasis is placed on looking for existing breast cancer when the search should focus on prevention and the possibility of finding a vaccine."

Many lives have been saved by cancer screenings, such as mammography screening for women which has decreased mortality by 15-20% for women over 50.

Early screenings are a great step in the fight against cancer, but to win the battle we must find prevention before cancer has a chance to grow.

A healthy habit is to add antioxidants to your diet - I've listed many examples on this page - but maybe a vaccine to protect us from cancer is in our future?

 

-Kelsey at www.kelseydickens.com

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Cinnamon Health Benefits

Cinnamon Health Benefits. Cinnamon is a sweet, aromatic spice and a medicine. It is one of the oldest spices known to man. Its uses and benefits have been documented as early as 2700 B.C. throughout China, Europe and Egypt.
Kelsey Dickens's insight:

Cinnamon can help control blood sugar, improve cognitive function and act as an anti-inflammatory agent. Add it to your yogurt, coffee, oatmeal, apples or any other food to reep it's many health benefits!

 

-Kelsey at www.kelseydickens.com

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Tomato and Watermelon Salad Recipe at Epicurious.com

Tomato and Watermelon Salad Recipe at Epicurious.com | Superfoods | Scoop.it

Delicious and simple summer salad! Full of vitamin C, lycopene and other healthy nutrients, this tasty dish is sure to please. 

 

-Kelsey at www.kelseydickens.com

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Why Whole Grains? | The Co-op Food Stores of New Hampshire and Vermont

Why Whole Grains? | The Co-op Food Stores of New Hampshire and Vermont | Superfoods | Scoop.it

Incorporating whole grains into your diet may help normalize blood sugar levels (lowering your risk for diabetes), increases fiber in your diet which can help you maintain a healthy weight as well as lowering your risk for heart disease. There are also many essential vitamins and minerals in whole grains especially energy producing B vitamins. Check the food label for the yellow "whole grain" label and make sure the each serving is at least 3 grams of fiber or more.

 

-Kelsey at www.kelseydickens.com

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People turn to high-calorie food first after fasting

People turn to high-calorie food first after fasting | Superfoods | Scoop.it

"NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - People who haven't eaten for many hours turn to high-calorie foods like starches and proteins — not vegetables — once they can satisfy their hunger, a new study suggests." 

 

Prepare your pantry before you begin a fast or a cleanse of any type in order to avoid overindulging in high fat, unhealthy foods. Stock your fridge with fresh veggies, fruits and whole grains so you have healthy choices when transitioning from a temporary fast or a detoxifying cleanse to whole foods.

 

- Kelsey at www.kelseydickens.com

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Coconut water tasty but no 'miracle drink'

Coconut water tasty but no 'miracle drink' | Superfoods | Scoop.it
Coconut water contains two minerals, sodium and potassium, that help balance fluids in the body, a U.S. registered dietitian said.

 

However, most people can obtain those minerals from a healthy diet and unless you run marathons daily, your body doesn't need an electrolyte replacement drink. Water will sufficiently hydrate you.

 

Certain foods that contain potassium and are less expensive than coconut water include bananas, potatoes, spinach, lentils, papaya and kidney beans.

 

My advice? Eat the whole foods and save your money. If you love coconut water, make it a treat! Have it on occasion and maybe even add it to your summer fruit smoothie!

 

-Kelsey at www.kelseydickens.com

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Johnny Tan's curator insight, October 23, 2014 9:55 PM

The treasure of coconut is in its oil!

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Coconut Pineapple Pumpkin Seed Smoothie

Coconut Pineapple Pumpkin Seed Smoothie | Superfoods | Scoop.it

"Ice cubes made with low-fat coconut milk give this blended drink extra flavor and texture." This great article from NY times describes some fresh new smoothies to add to your daily routine this summer: Strawberry and Almond Smoothie, Coconut Pineapple Pumpkin Seed Smoothie, Carrot Papaya and Sesame Smoothie, Seeded Banana Frappe, Melon Pomegranate Almond Smoothie. Check out this article for specific recipes and nutritional information.

 

*Tip: make ice cubes with coconut milk in order to cut down on calories while still getting that delicious coconut flavor and icy texture. 

 

-Kelsey at www.kelseydickens.com

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Farmers markets: Good for you and the economy

Farmers markets: Good for you and the economy | Superfoods | Scoop.it

"Farmers' markets are not just good for you, they're good for the environment too." Check out farmers markets in your area! Shopping at a farmers market ensures that you will be buying fresh, local and seasonal produce that is picked at peak ripeness and has fewer pesticides than most produce bought at a grocery store. You'll be supporting local farming at the same time, talk about a win-win situation! 

 

- Kelsey at www.kelseydickens.com

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Powerful Food Combinations

Powerful Food Combinations | Superfoods | Scoop.it

"Who came up with the idea that we are supposed to drink orange juice at breakfast? And why, if oatmeal is so good for us, do we eat that only in the morning as well?"

 

Powerful food combinations include 2 or more foods that, when eaten together, help with the absorption of vital nutients that each food contains. For example, the traditional peanut butter and whole wheat sandwich. There are certain amino acids that are absent in wheat and present in peanuts. Consuming a complete chain of amino acids, such as combining wheat and peanuts, helps the body build muscle and maintian tissues. Check out this article for more powerful food combinations such as tomatoes and avocado, garlic and fish, oatmeal and OJ and almonds and yogurt...just to name a few...

 

-Kelsey at www.kelseydickens.com

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"Natural" Sugar VS "Added" Sugar - What's the Difference?

"Natural" Sugar VS "Added" Sugar - What's the Difference? | Superfoods | Scoop.it

"Natural" sugar means just that - sugar that comes directly from nature. Plants produce energy in the form of sugar when they are exposed to sunlight. This is a naturally occuring event for plants - hense the phrase "natural" sugar. So the sugar in whole foods like fruits, vegetables, grains, milk and yogurt contain these naturally occuring sugars and provide essential energy for your brain, nerves and muscles. Unless you have a medical condition that requires you to carefully watch your sugar intake, eating natural sugar is perfectly healthy. In fact foods like fruit, vegetables, grains, milk and yogurt not only contain natural sugar but also a plethora of vitamins, minerals and other essential nutrients.

 

These naturally occuring sugars can be refined into crystals and used to sweeten up our foods and beverages. These refined sugars are known as "added" sugars. Examples of "added" sugars include table sugar, corn syrup and molasses. Eating too much added sugar leads to health problems such as obesity, diabetes and even some cancers. Protect your health by cutting down on sweetened beverages, desserts or any other sources of added sugar.

 

Food labels can be confusing and do not differentiate between "natural" and "added" sugars. For example, a box of raisins might have 18 grams of sugar according to the food label. The 18 grams includes the naturally occuring sugars in the raisins as well as the amount of added sugars, all in the sugar category of the food label. Here's some tips to determine the type of sugar you're consuming:

- Look at the ingredients list, if sugar was added to the product it will be listed on the ingredients list

- Eat whole foods! If you eat a whole peach instead of canned peaches, you know that you're eating natural sugar!

- Eat your fruit instead of drinking it: It takes multiple oranges to fill up 1 glass of orange juice - which is why orange juice contains a lot of sugar. Bypass the juice and just eat an orange!

 

- Kelsey at www.kelseydickens.com

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Get Lucky With This Irish Recipe: Potato-Cabbage Soup

Get Lucky With This Irish Recipe: Potato-Cabbage Soup | Superfoods | Scoop.it

Even if you aren't Irish, start your St. Patty's week off right with this "lucky" potato-cabbage soup. Why is it lucky? You get all of the savory flavors you love, plus a hearty boost of vitamin C and fiber without all of the extra calories.

 

All you need for this Irish soup is olive oil, potatoes, cabbage, unsalted butter, scallions, garlic and chicken (or vegetable) broth. Check out the full recipe at health.com:

 

http://www.health.com/health/gallery/0,,20348441,00.html

 

-Kelsey at www.kelseydickens.com

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National Nutrition Month - 2012 - Get Your Plate in Shape

National Nutrition Month - 2012 - Get Your Plate in Shape | Superfoods | Scoop.it

"The theme for March 2012 is 'Get Your Plate in Shape.' National Nutrition Month® is a nutrition education and information campaign created annually in March by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. The campaign focuses attention on the importance of making informed food choices and developing sound eating and physical activity habits."

 

To get your plate in shape:

- Fill 1/2 of your plate with fruits & veggies

- Fill 1/4 of your plate with lean protein (fish, chicken, lean meat, beans/lentils)

- Fill 1/4 of your plate with whole grains or a healthy starch (brown rice, quinoa, barley, cous cous, sweet potato)

- Add some dairy by drinking a glass of low-fat milk, eating 4 ounces of low-fat Greek yogurt or drizzling 1 ounce of low-fat cheese on top of your salad or whole grains

- Portion control: check out this link! Click on each category of food (vegetables, milk & dairy, grains, etc.) to get a visual image of portion sizes on your plate:

http://www.webmd.com/diet/healthtool-portion-size-plate

 

*Save money at the store by clipping coupons out of the paper or printing coupons online. You could save 10-15% each time you go to the grocery store! Also, buying produce that's in season will save money - it's usually on sale! Check out the seasonal fruits & veggies for Spring (March-May):

http://www.fruitsandveggiesmorematters.org/whats-in-season-spring

 

-Kelsey at www.kelseydickens.com

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National Sweet Potato Month

National Sweet Potato Month | Superfoods | Scoop.it

February is national sweet potato month! Get your fill of vitamin A, C, fiber and B vitamins by adding some sweet potatoes to your plate.

- Cut into wedges, drizzle with some olive oil and bake for some healthy homemade french fries

- Cut into chuncks and steam or add to your veggie stir fry, chili or soup

- Bake the same way as a regular potato for a sweeter, more nutrient dense side dish

- Try adding mashed sweet potatoes to your favorite muffin recipe in place of butter! *Bake with whole wheat pastry flour to pack in even more healthy nutrients

 

-Kelsey at www.kelseydickens.com

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Ken Dickens's comment, February 14, 2012 2:20 PM
Do Yams do the same thing? Inquiring minds want to know.
Kelsey Dickens's comment, February 14, 2012 8:29 PM
Yams are very similar in taste and you can prepare them the same way as sweet potatoes, however they do not have as much vitamin A and as many energy boosting B vitamins as sweet potatoes (yams only have B6, where as sweet potatoes have B6, B5 and B3).