We've heard it all our lives how important eating enough leafy greens is and despite this, we still struggle to get enough in our daily routine. Eating enough greens is a crucial contribution to our immune system's overall health and the wellness of our bodies. I personally think a lot of the reason people tend to not get enough is because they don't know how to sneak additional greens into their everyday dishes / routine. With that being said, here's 5 super simple ways to add extra greens in to some of your everyday dishes and routines.
What other easy ways do you add additional greens into your everyday routine?
We're all busy in this day and age, often times we're juggling work, school, families, friends, or a combination of all of those things so we're always looking for convenience in our day to day lives. When it comes to convenience regarding our food choices, there is often a sacrifice that we are not really thinking of. Whether we're sacrificing quality, our health, or cost efficiency, this convenience often comes at a price.
Here are a few things you should try to avoid when convenience comes calling!
All it takes is a little preparedness after shopping to make sure you're all set for the week.
What do you guys think? Are you guilty of convenience choices that aren't always the best choices for us in the end?
You can look anywhere on the internet and find conflicting information regarding how much vegetables and fruit you should be consuming in a day. Regardless of which one is accurate, the answer is we should be eating a lot. It might seem daunting to eat enough fruits and veggies but take my word for it as someone who didn't always get enough, it's not impossible!
I started chopping up raw veg everyday to eat in between meals and eventually it became part of my routine. In fact, I eat anywhere from 2 to 4 cups of raw veggies everyday depending on the type of veg I'm consuming. This, on top of the veggies and fruit I might consume with or in other meals, has put me at 6 - 9+ servingas of vegetables per day. It seems impossible but guys, I'm telling you not only is it possible, but it's actually quite easy!
WHAT IS A SERVING?
- 1 Cup Raw Vegetables
- 1 Large Bell Pepper
- 2 Small Carrots / 2 Stalks Celery
- 1 Piece of fruit (Banana, Apple etc.)
- 1/2 C Cooked vegetables
- 2 Cups (Raw) Leafy Greens
These are examples of what a serving of veggies or fruit would consist of. Now, let's break down how I get my fruit and veggies each day and show you just how simple it actually is!
Not eating meat honestly makes it easier for me to eat more veggies. When it comes to meal time, I try to follow the general rule that there is always room for one more veggi9e in whatever it is I'm making. I eat a reasonable amount of tomato based pasta dishes with several cups of fresh spinach. I like to blend cooked broccolo or cauliflower into cream sauces. Not to mention, whenever I'm eating something particularly hearty, I'll try and have a salad to go along with it.
Don't forget that beans constitute as veggies AND a great source of protein. I add beans and chickpeas into my pasta dishes and they are the stars of dishes like soups or chilis. Quite literally, I can easily put away 2 - 3 servings of vegetables per meal.
The point I'm trying to make here is that it's totally within reach to eat anywhere from 6 - over 10 servings of veggies and fruit every day if you really make the effort. I came from someone who maybe had 3 - 4 everyday to now where I've adopted a few tricks into my routine and now I'm eating more vegetables and fruit than ever before.
I would also like to point out I still manage to get my occasional junky treat in too! I enjoy my chip coated peanuts, nutella stuffed wafer sticks, pretzels etc. and although these things are NOT healthy, I feel ok eating them because I know how much good I've put into my body otherwise.
How many servings of fruit and veg do you guys get everyday? What are your tips for getting more into your diet?
Ahh, the humble potato, one of the vegetable world's most recognized and well received vegetables not to mention my personal favourite right next to raw celery. Potatoes are the perfect veggie in so many ways because they can adapt to pretty much any flavour and you can utilize them in any way imaginable. Mashed, roasted, boiled, smashed, fried, baked, whipped etc., the list goes on and on.
Unfortunately, as health continues to take priority in today's society, people are turning away from the tater in favour of it's sweeter and more antioxidant rich cousin the sweet potato. Is it true that regular old potatoes are as bad for you as they're being regarded? The short answer is no. Often times, when someone is discussing why regular potatoes aren't as good for you, they are villifying the toppings one chooses to put on the tater.
WAYS TO KEEP YOUR TATERS HEALTHY
Here's a few tips for making sure your potatoes stay good for you or at the very least, aren't smothered with boatloads of extra calories!
There's no denying sweet potatoes are wonderful for you but that's not enough of a reason to shun the other varieties. Enjoy a mixed variety of taters in your life and you'll be just fine, just enjoy them for what they are without the constant need to smother them in fat and more fat.
I found this article this morning while I was doing my usual rounds through the MSN homepage and wanted to share with you guys some of the things from this list I agreed or disagreed with. The list compiles 29 products from the grocery store that you really shouldn't be buying when considering how easy it is to do at home or how much better for you it is to do from scratch. Let's break down some of the things on this list :)
Do you agree with my position on things? Check the article out for yourself and see how many of these things you buy that maybe you can start quickly whipping up at home!
Making scratch made dressing and vinaigrette is super easy to do at home especially thanks to websites like Pinterest or television networks like the Food Network or Cooking Channel which give you all the inspiration you could need. There are a billion ways to whip up scratch made salad dressings but sometimes we all still find ourselves reaching for a bottle of the pre-made stuff.
While there's nothing wrong with taking advantage of a bottle of dressing from the shelf at the market, all dressings and vinaigrettes are NOT created equal. This post is inspired by my sudden realization at work last night that I wanted to whip up a bean salad when I got home but had no vinegar and no fresh herbs which are scare here in Dublin. Knowing this, I went on the hunt for a bottle of vinaigrette and as someone who religiously reads ingredient labels, it was quickly apparent that no two vinaigrettes are the same.
In the case of bottled vinaigrette, the ingredients list should typically be short and sweet. Oil of course, vinegar, seasonings, herbs, maple syrup or honey, and occasionally citrus, other than this, you shouldn't see anything else in there but that is definitely not always the case. Here's a few things you should watch out for when shopping for vinaigrette!
Another sugary substance hiding out in your dressings and vinagrettes. I can guarantee you that when you see one of these syrups, you'll also see sugar in the list as well which is just a nutritional disaster. There's no room in a vinaigrette for teaspoons upon teaspoons of sugar.
If your ingredient list is a short story and half of those ingredients sound like something straight out of an experimental laboratory, stay as far away from that vinaigrette as possible.
LOW FAT / LOW CAL
These are dangerous and misleading when it comes to bottle vinaigrettes because it almost every case of something being low in one thing, they've added more other bad things to compensate and keep things tasty. Just stick to full fat vinaigrettes and suggested serving sizes and you'll be fine.
There are so many stories out there about why you need this superfood or that superfood and billions of supposed benefits for anything you want to find on the internet. How much of this is true or backed up by scientific evidence? How much of this is simply hogwash? There's really no way to know but when it comes to Turmeric, I can tell you that some of these supposed benefits are real because I've experienced them myself. Most importantly, the anti-inflammatory benefits of taking it.
Four years ago I was experiencing crippling pain in my wrist sometimes stretching all the way up to the inside of my elbow. This pain would start almost immediately after I started to use my computer which as someone who was blogging and writing / typing recipes daily, I couldn't afford to have happening. I went to a muscle doctor and had tests done to determine if something like tendinitis or tennis elbow were to blame but the results came back negative leaving me feeling desperate for a solution. That's when my boss turned me onto Turmeric capsules claiming that they might be able to help me. After doing some research I decided to start taking them and in all honesty, within a month all of the pain I was experiencing had disappeared.
To this day I continue to take my turmeric supplements. Was it all just a coincidence or was this miraculous orange spice to blame for my sudden healing? I truly attribute it to the turmeric and with that being said, I want to dive into a few reasons you should be taking turmeric supplements every day!
2. Fighting Free Radicals
Oxidative stress in our bodies is a leading root cause of developing illnesses like cancer. Curcumin in Turmeric has been studied for its anti-cancer properties because of its ability to target and fight free radicals in our body's. Curcumin not only fights free radicals but also boosts our body's own immune systems to better fight off these free radicals.
3. Fighting off Diseases related to Age
Once again, curcumin has proven to be effective in helping to prevent / treat so many age related diseases. Alzheimer's, heart disease, arthritis, these diseases have all shown to promising results when ti comes to curcumin. Although much more studying is needed to definitively say that this is the case, studies have shown that curcumin has the ability to aid in all of these areas. With arthritis, the anti-inflammatory properties have been shown to help reduce the pain and muscle tension associated with different forms of arthritis. In the case of brain and heart related illnesses / diseases, curcumin once again has been shown to help prevent the degeneration of these organs through the fighting of free radicals and oxidation.
4. Skin boosting benefits
The antioxidants in turmeric are currently being studied for their benefits in helping keep the skin healthy and prevent things like rosacea, acne, and sun spots.
Are you taking curcumin? Have a success story to share? Comment below or leave your comments on FB / Twitter :)
KFC in the United Kingdom is officially test running a completely vegan chicken burger this month setting off a wave of excitement AND negativity throughout the vegan community. Announcing the Imposter Burger, coated in those famous herbs and spices and slapped between a bun with vegan mayonnaise and lettuce, KFC will test it out for an entire month to help determine whether this is something that should be rolled out across the chain. With all of these fast food restaurants partnering with big name vegan companies like Beyond Meat, Impossible Foods, Quorn etc., it appears that things are moving in the right direction but there's still controversy.
Secondly, the question of whether purchasing these vegan items contradicts with those very same ethical beliefs. On one hand, you are showing support for the idea of these companies taking steps in the right direction by finally offering vegan products and catering to a market that it growing rapidly. On the other hand, your money is going to a company that still sources animals from factory farms which pollute the environment rapidly and houses their animals in horrendous conditions. So how do we win in these situations?
KFC is only the latest in the United Kingdom to join in on the vegan market. Every fast food chain is reflective of the country it is based in and offers options to cater to the markets in particular areas. For example, when I was in Belgium, the McDonalds had a hefty vegan menu that included vegan nuggets that were delicious and a wonderful vegan burger that could've fooled me into thinking I was eating meat. Back in Canada, the McDonalds has little to no vegan options while places like A & W, Burger King, and Harvey's have been offering veggie burgers for a while now. In fact, A & W and Tim Hortons both have recently joined up with Beyond Meat to offer breakfast sausage sandwiches for vegans and vegetarians alike. As I said, the market is what calls for the options offered at every chain but it is wholly evident that the vegan market is growing and these companies are picking up on those opportunities.
The more options these places are offering means that less meat is being produced and consumed. The mroe innovative these products become mean the more people that are willing to try the vegan versions of their favourite fast food items. All of this will work towards the goal of reducing the planet's meat consumption in favour of vegan products which is ultimately the goal is it not?
I believe we will continue to see the rise of the vegan offerings at our favourite fast food restaurants because the fact is, this market will continue to grow exponentially as it already has demonstrated. The future is definitely vegetarian and vegan.
What do you guys think?
Although fruit is a nutritious way to get your sweets fix, there are some fruits that are notoriously higher in sugars than others. Consuming fruit is a great way to get antioxidants, nutrients, and vitamins, but which ones should you eat carefully and in moderation? Let's take a look.
I like to switch up the fruit I'm eating often times because I don't want to get sick of eating them. I'll rotate through a regular rotation of apples, blueberries, bananas, and raspberries, including treats like pineapple and grapes once and a while. It's important to try and get a variety in for all of their nutritional benefits but it's also important to be mindful of how much sugar you're consuming.
I try to live by a 70/30 ratio of veggies to fruits. I eat a large amount of raw veg each day and make sure to get a little fruit in as well but vegetables have copious amount of nutrients as well usually without the sugar. Balance is key so use this as a suggestion as to which fruits to keep your eyes on.
It's so easy to make simple swaps in your diet to get the most out of every meal without eating things that might not be the healthiest for you. I've got some wonderfully simple swaps to help you enjoy all of the meals you love but with some added health benefits :)
I'm not a nutritionist by any means but these are simple things you can do in your every day life to amp up your nutritional values in a day. it doesn't take a nutritionist to know that sweets like candy and milk chocolate are nasty for us or that white rice is a nutritional disaster. By making these simple swaps part of your everyday routine, you're doing wondrous things for your body and overall health :)
Jonathan - Happy Veg
Dedicated Foodie. Proud Vegetarian. Recipe Creator. Friend to all Animals.