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Posts Tagged ‘healthy eating’

11 Easy Strategies for Eating Healthy on a Tight Food Budget

Wednesday, July 27th, 2011

 

 

Healthy food doesn’t have to cost a fortune-Learn how to save money on while grocery shopping for food that promotes good health

11 EASY STRATEGIES FOR EATING HEALTHY ON A TIGHT FOOD BUDGET, WWW.B12PATCH.COM

Eating healthy, low-fat foods can be expensive.  Whole-wheat pastas and breads cost much more than their white-flour alternatives.  And because there’s a lower demand for specialty health food items, such as those targeted for gluten-free dieters, storeowners have to charge more in order to make any kind of profit.

Can a Gluten-Free Diet Ease Symptoms of Fibromyalgia?

That doesn’t mean you can’t eat healthy foods without sacrificing your budget.

By following a few simple money-saving strategies, you can serve up wholesome, crowd-pleasing meals at a fraction of the price you would pay on restaurant food.

11 EASY STRATEGIES FOR EATING HEALTHY ON A TIGHT FOOD BUDGET, WWW.B12PATCH.COM

Here are 11 useful tips for healthy food shopping on a budget:

#1 Stay in the now

Whenever you buy out-of-season imported produce, keep in mind that you’re paying the bill for the gas and refrigeration, not to mention the damaging effect on the environment.

Buy fresh, locally grown organic fruits and vegetables that are in season, instead.  Shop your nearby Farmers’ Market for some great year-round savings on winter squash, spring berries, or summer watermelon.

#2 Go for frozen

Frozen veggies are just as healthy as fresh, and in many cases, they’re even cheaper.  Why buy fresh kiwi or strawberries for your morning smoothies, when you can find them in the frozen aisle for less money?

Buying frozen saves money on wasted produce, too.  Giant bags of frozen peas, carrots, and corn are delicious, healthy fillers for many soups, casseroles, and salads, too.

11 EASY STRATEGIES FOR EATING HEALTHY ON A TIGHT FOOD BUDGET, WWW.B12PATCH.COM#3 Can it

Sure, if you could afford to have fresh salmon steaks every evening for dinner, you would.  But that doesn’t mean you can’t make a delicious and nutritious meal using canned salmon, tuna, or chicken as your base ingredient.  Think outside of the recipe box.  Make salmon burgers, tuna pasta salad with capers, or instant chicken soup with rice.

Related: Nine Healthiest Canned Foods: Many Contain Vitamin B12

#4 Shop around

You’re not likely to find everything you want in one store, at least, not if you want to save money.  An important savings strategy is to keep track of which store offers the best deals on your favorite health food items.  Instead of wasting money (and energy) on gas bouncing from one grocery store to the next, assign a day of the week to each particular market.

#5 That’s my list and I’m stickin’ to it

There’s no room for spontaneity on a tight food budget.  Before you go out the door, make yourself a list of need-to-buy cheap food items, and stick to it.  Shop around the perimeter of the store to avoid pricey, and often unhealthy, temptations.  If you see a healthy food staple on sale, buy in large amounts.

11 EASY STRATEGIES FOR EATING HEALTHY ON A TIGHT FOOD BUDGET, WWW.B12PATCH.COM#6 Think big

Generally, the large economically sized items are most cost-effective.  Buy food in bulk whenever you can.  Ounce for ounce, a scoop of organic grains, spices, or legumes from the bin costs less that its pre-packaged alternative.  In the produce section, scan the aisles for giant sacks of potatoes, onions, apples, and oranges.

#7 Get back to the basics

Instead of buying flavored yogurts, minute rice, or instant oatmeal, stock up on large containers of plain yogurt, brown basmati rice, and 100% natural oats.  Besides being easier on your wallet, these plain simple food staples are much healthier than the processed versions.

#8 Work the system

Be on the alert for weekly store specials by subscribing to various email lists and circulars.  Comb the Sunday paper for coupons, but only pick out the ones for food items that you were going to buy, anyways.

Don’t be tempted by “buy one, get one” deals on expensive convenience foods that you wouldn’t ordinarily purchase.  Sign up for a store Rewards card; occasionally, you’ll receive extra savings on already marked down foods.

#9 Copycat that

Don’t be lured by the convenience of packaged snack foods like Larabars or baked Lay’s potato chips.  Instead, try making your own copycat versions at home.  The internet is chock full of copycat recipes for whatever your stomach craves.  Not only will you pinch pennies by making it yourself, but you can modify the ingredients to serve your special dietary needs.

#10 Go fridge pickin’

If you’re low on stock, scour your refrigerator for potential dinner ingredients.  With some leftover stew, a half-empty can of carrots ‘n peas, and mashed potatoes you can make shepherd’s pie.

Be inventive!  Pretend you’re on a reality cooking show, and see what you can concoct with a handful of basic healthy food ingredients.  You can name your culinary creations titles like “Everything Enchiladas,” or “Cream of Corn Casserole Soup.”

#11 Grow your own Victory Garden

Celebrate your victory over inflated organic food prices by cultivating your own green thumb.  You don’t have to be much of a farmer to plant your own tomatoes or squash, and your family will eat healthier as a result.

As you become more experienced, try expanding your home crops to include a short row of corn, sweet peas, and a few patches of lettuce.  The sky (and ground space) really is the limit!

11 EASY STRATEGIES FOR EATING HEALTHY ON A TIGHT FOOD BUDGET, WWW.B12PATCH.COM

Remember that the cheapest foods might cost less in the supermarket, but they ultimately cost more in the way of doctor’s bills, diet plans, larger clothing, and orthotics- not to mention your own mortality.

Check out some related subjects:

Boost Weight Loss- Snack on These 6 Yummy Treats

Crack the Iceberg Habit: 10 Green Leafy Veggies you’ll Love

15 Gluten-Free Glitterati, from Aniston to Zooey

Sources:

11 ways to save money on healthy food – Healthy Living on Shine

10 Easy Ways To Save Money On Organic Food – My Money (usnews.com)

Eating well on the cheap: saving money on healthy food

10 Ways to Save Money on Food Shopping

The Best- and Worst- Cooking Oils for Heart Health

Tuesday, July 26th, 2011

 

 

Following a low-saturated fat diet is crucial for heart health and general well-being.  Use a variety of wholesome nut and seed oils for everyday healthy cooking.

THE BEST- AND WORST- COOKING OILS FOR HEART HEALTH,WWW.B12PATCH.COM

Ten Bites to Better Brain Power

Start a heart-healthy collection

When it comes to cooking with healthy oils, variety is indeed the spice of life.  It’s important to stock your kitchen with a selection of flavorful, low-in-saturated-fat oils.  Many are rich in vitamins, monounsaturated fats, and omega-3 fatty acids.

For all-purpose cooking, olive oil and canola oil are versatile staples that work in most recipes, with the exception of deep-frying or searing.  Other oils are ideal for cold salad dressings- a few drops of dark toasted sesame oil add a rich smoky flavor to Oriental chicken salad and pasta.

THE BEST- AND WORST- COOKING OILS FOR HEART HEALTH,WWW.B12PATCH.COM

Low smoking point oils

Use in raw in salads, dips, and sandwich spreads

Flax seed oil adds flavor to pasta salads or yogurt dips, and provides alpha-linolenic acid, a heart-healthy form of omega-3. Health experts link flax seed oil with cardiovascular health and normal insulin response.

Wheat germ oil is another exceptional agent. Rich in vitamin E, wheat germ has antioxidant properties for combating free radicals, thus boosting heart health. Use wheat germ oil sparingly in marinades and spreads, as it contains 17% saturated fats. Wheat germ oil also stimulates your immune system and promotes healthy brain functioning.

Medium smoking point oils

Use for stir-frying, baking, and sautéing

Canola oil, with only 7% saturated fats, is one of the heart-healthiest cooking oils across the board. Canola oil imparts a mild, clean flavor to “oven fried” chicken nuggets and potato sticks.

Walnut oil is a surprisingly healthy source of omega-3 fatty acids, in addition to being low in saturated fats. Walnut oil has a medium smoking point, so only use it for quick sautéing over a medium flame.

Hemp oil is omega-rich cooking oil that is gaining popularity in alternative medicine circles; to prevent rancidity, store hemp oil in the refrigerator.

THE BEST- AND WORST- COOKING OILS FOR HEART HEALTH,WWW.B12PATCH.COM

High smoking point oils

Use for searing or browning

Almond oil and hazelnut oil are the choicest oils to use for high-heat cooking, with only 7% saturated fats. Nut oils have a distinct flavor that enhance dishes like seared salmon cutlets, or “blackened” Cajun chicken.

Olive oil is a flavorful runner-up that is slightly higher in saturated fats (14%). “Light” colored olive oil has the highest smoking point, while less refined extra virgin olive oil is more suited to medium-high cooking temperatures.

High-oleic sunflower oil is also low in saturated fats and holds up well under high heat.

Oils that should stay on the shelf

Whichever oil your prefer, think a second time before using coconut oil, which packs a whopping dose of 92% saturated fats and has very few health benefits.

Palm oil is another contender for our “worst oil ever” award, packed with 52% artery-clogging saturated fats.

THE BEST- AND WORST- COOKING OILS FOR HEART HEALTH,WWW.B12PATCH.COM

Related Reading:

7 Days of Refreshing, High Energy Smoothies without Caffeine

Eat this to Prevent Hair Loss- 5 Foods for Healthy Hair

Sources:

Heart-Healthy Cooking: Oils 101- Cleveland Clinic Health

Choosing Healthier Oils

What is Wheat Germ?

Flaxseed Health Benefits, Food Sources, Recipes, and Tips for Using It

7 Days of Refreshing, High Energy Smoothies without Caffeine

Monday, July 11th, 2011

 

 

Healthy and delicious fruity milk shakes are packed with protein, fiber, vitamins, and antioxidants- these smoothies will keep your energy up all summer long…without the caffeine!

7 DAYS OF REFRESHING, HIGH ENERGY SMOOTHIES WITHOUT CAFFEINE

Nothing beats an ice-cold drink on a hot, lazy summer day.  Colas and “energy drinks” might temporarily give you that extra power boost you need in the middle of the afternoon, but that’s only because they get their fuel from caffeine.

One 16-ounce can of SoBe’s No Fear contains 141mg of caffeine; that’s about as much as an 8-ounce cup of coffee, which can have anywhere between 100-150mg of caffeine.

So, what’s wrong with a caffeine buzz?

Nothing, if it’s an occasional cup of coffee.  But if you’re banking on a can of Diet Coke or a tall Frappuccino to get you through your morning workload or afternoon gym class on a regular basis, then you should consider the health risks involved.

Caffeine and your health

Besides guaranteeing a “caffeine crash” a few hours later, which defeats the whole purpose of drinking an energy drink, excess caffeine intake causes the following side effects:

  • Trouble sleeping
  • Mood swings
  • Heart problems
  • High blood pressure
  • Withdrawal symptoms

Nutritious, energy drinks just make more sense

Why risk all the ill effects of caffeine addiction, when you can get a vitamin-packed power boost from heart-healthy ingredients that your body loves?

Whip up a high-energy smoothie for a quick, refreshing breakfast, snack, or frozen dessert. 

Dairy ingredients such as yogurt and low-fat milk provide protein and vitamin B12, for long-lasting energy and metabolic performance throughout your day. 

Individuals on special diets can substitute soy milk or soy ice cream for a vegetarian milk shake. 

Fresh fruits of the season deliver maximum vitamins and antioxidants.

Try some of these healthy, summertime smoothie recipes for yourself; listed below is one for each day of the week!

Sunday: Tea-Licious Smoothie

7 Days of Refreshing, High Energy Smoothies without Caffeine

This frosty drink gets it vavavoom from peppermint tea, lemon sorbet, and vitamin C-rich citrus fruits.  It’s an excellent alternative to caffeine-laden Southern sweet tea.

Monday: Apple à la Mode Smoothie

7 Days of Refreshing, High Energy Smoothies without Caffeine

You’ll start loving Mondays if you make this apple pie smoothie a part of your morning ritual.  The apple pectin provides high fiber, so you won’t get hungry by the time 10:00 am rolls around.

Tuesday: Creamy Date Shake

Dates add natural sweetness and filling fiber to this low-fat milk shake.

Wednesday: Banana-Yogurt Smoothie

Martha Stewart recommends this naturally wholesome and delicious banana drink, which also contains flax seeds, honey, and plain yogurt.

Thursday: Watermelon Yogurt Mint Smoothie

7 DAYS OF REFRESHING, HIGH ENERGY SMOOTHIES WITHOUT CAFFEINE

Are you ready to try something refreshingly different?  If you love crisp watermelon, then you’ll flip for this cooling summer treat, made with fresh watermelon, mint leaves, honey, and lemon yogurt.

Friday: Pumpkin Pie Green Smoothie Recipe

7 DAYS OF REFRESHING, HIGH ENERGY SMOOTHIES WITHOUT CAFFEINE

You don’t have to wait until October to enjoy antioxidant-rich pumpkin pie! Just crack open a can of pumpkin puree, and add banana and almond milk.  This recipe also contains two cups of baby spinach, but you can substitute your favorite leafy greens.

Saturday: Avocado-Pear Smoothie

Avocado and silken tofu add a smooth, creamy texture to this protein drink, and pear juice and honey give it a naturally sweet taste.

Other great healthy recipes:

10 Most Tempting Vegan Ice Cream Recipes

Crohn’s Disease Suggested Dinner Menu, plus Recipes

8 Rockin’ Meatless Grill Recipes for Memorial’s Day

Ten Ultimate Super Bowl Snacks That Are High in Vitamin B12

Sources:

Too much caffeine – Caffeine crash – TheSite.org

Caffeine Fuels Most Energy Drinks

The Daily Meal

Health.com

Food.com

Incredible Smoothies

Whole Living

My Recipes

zoyachubby

Crack the Iceberg Habit: 10 Green Leafy Veggies you’ll Love

Thursday, June 30th, 2011

 

 

If you think Arugula is a Mediterranean village off the coast of Italy, then you should really give dark leafy greens another chance.

Dark green salads, such as romaine, spinach, and kale are wonderfully versatile and tasty, in addition to containing tons of beneficial vitamins and minerals like vitamins A, C, B6, and K, and folate, iron, calcium, and magnesium.

Green veggies are also high in fiber, which is great for your digestive system.

What’s in it for me?

Overall good health

The virtues of green salad vegetables are too numerous to mention, but here are just a few:

Including a variety of dark green salads in your daily diet is a recommended course of action for optimum overall health, as they are high in antioxidants and carotenoids.

In addition, because salads are high in fiber, they help to quickly and efficiently remove toxins from your body before they have a chance to do you any harm.

Avoid getting Type 2 diabetes

    According to a publication in the British Medical Journal, eating spinach regularly improves your insulin response; this is due to its high magnesium content.

    Type 2 Diabetes Often Undetected- Do You Have These Symptoms?

    Heart-healthy

      The Harvard Public School of Public Health announced that eating one serving of dark salad leaves improves heart health by 23%.

      Anti-aging benefits

        When combined with vitamin B12, the folate that occurs naturally in salad greens boosts memory retention in people with Alzheimer’s disease or other forms of brain atrophy caused by old age.

        Alzheimer’s Disease and Vitamin B12 Deficiency

        Promotes healthy skin

          Eating nutrients containing vitamin A is like getting a facial from within.  Vitamin A benefits the skin by curbing acne flare-ups, improving skin elasticity, and removing toxins.

          Vitamin B12 for Healthy Hair, Skin and Nails

          Prevents birth defects

            Folate is one of the most vital nutrients for women who are either pregnant, nursing, or trying to conceive.

            It is essential for proper development of the nervous system; deficiencies in folate are linked to several types of birth defects.

            Folic Acid and B12: Your Nerves Need Both to Thrive


            Did you know…?

            Always pair leafy greens with some form of healthy oil.  The vitamins in salad greens are oil-soluble, meaning if you don’t sprinkle some olive oil on them, then you’re missing out on a powerhouse of nutrients.  So say bye-bye to that fat-free salad dressing.  You didn’t really like it, anyways.

            The most popular way of preparing salad greens is…

            in a salad, of course, but there are many other great greens recipes.

            Make yourself a healthy low-carb gyro- just substitute a few large leaves of romaine or Swiss chard for the pita, choose your fillings, and that’s a wrap!

            Kale holds up well in Chinese stir-fry.

            Spinach makes a tasty addition to soups and casseroles.

            Some people still enjoy eating their greens “old school.”  That is, the way their grandma’s grandma ate them- stewed or steamed, mustard, collard, or turnip greens.

            The top ten

            Here is a list of the ten greenest of the greens.  Try one today!

            Mustard Greens

            Crack the Iceberg Habit: 10 Green Leafy Veggies you’ll Love, www.b12patch.com

            Watercress

            Crack the Iceberg Habit: 10 Green Leafy Veggies you’ll Love, www.b12patch.com

            Arugula

            Crack the Iceberg Habit: 10 Green Leafy Veggies you’ll Love, www.b12patch.com

            Dandelion Greens

            Crack the Iceberg Habit: 10 Green Leafy Veggies you’ll Love, www.b12patch.com

            Collard Greens

            Crack the Iceberg Habit: 10 Green Leafy Veggies you’ll Love, www.b12patch.com

            Swiss Chard

            Crack the Iceberg Habit: 10 Green Leafy Veggies you’ll Love, www.b12patch.com

            Spinach

            Crack the Iceberg Habit: 10 Green Leafy Veggies you’ll Love, www.b12patch.com

            Romaine Lettuce

            Crack the Iceberg Habit: 10 Green Leafy Veggies you’ll Love, www.b12patch.com

            Kale

            Crack the Iceberg Habit: 10 Green Leafy Veggies you’ll Love, www.b12patch.com

            Turnip greens

            Crack the Iceberg Habit: 10 Green Leafy Veggies you’ll Love, www.b12patch.com

            Related Reading:

            Ten Bites to Better Brain Power

            8 Rockin’ Meatless Grill Recipes for Memorial’s Day

            Sources:

            Top 5 Reasons to Eat Your Green Leafy Vegetables

            Leafy Greens — Ranked and Rated

            Healthy Salad Greens: New Options To Power Up Your Salad

            Dark Green Leafy Vegetables

            Green leafy vegetables reduce diabetes risk, study finds

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