Tag Archive | healthy eating

Read the food labels





This past weekend was Superbowl and our family was ready to enjoy some of our favorite snack foods.  Trying to keep it somewhat healthy our daughter purchased a spinach veggie-dip with pumpernickel bread.  It looked so appetizing.

However,  upon reading the ingredients on the container I was dismayed at what I discovered.  To my utter amazement I discovered CHICKEN FAT as one of the ingredients.  Wow!  I certainly was not expecting that in a veggie-dip.  Needless to say, we ate the pumpernickel bread minus the spinach dip!

It is a reminder to be an informed consumer. Too often, we get caught up in the pretty packaging.  If it looks healthy, then it must be alright to eat!  Unfortunately, that is not the case.

This one surprised me! Remember read the labels and don’t be fooled by marketing tactics and pretty designs.




It’s a Fish Kinda day!

salmon-picI can’t say that I am very fond of fish, in fact, I would say for the most part, I avoid it at all costs.

Growing up fish was either from a can (tuna) or covered in batter (halibut with chips).  Once in a while Dad would make a white sauce with parsley to enhance some pan-fried fish that Mom would make.  This is the only way I enjoyed fish and ate it.

When I met my husband’s family for the first time they served broiled salmon with a wedge of lemon with green beans and rice.  Not wanting to make a fuss I managed to wash it down with several glasses of apple juice.

Fast forward to present day, you will now see tins of tuna and red salmon in the pantry shelf along with frozen salmon fillets in my freezer.  Yes, somehow I succumbed to the pressure of eating more fish.  After reading many articles and books about the health benefits of fish(heart health, brain food, eye improvement, skin enhancer etc.) I decided it was worth introducing it as part of our family meal plan.

At first, I tried hiding the fish in casseroles, and cream cheese pates but little by little I began to enjoy the flavor of it and no longer need to “hide it”.  Today, not only do  I enjoy eating fish, I enjoy catching fish and eating them!  A few of my favorites are perch, sunfish, bass and even catfish (I know, right?).

If you are not a big fan of fish, give it a try!  Your body will love you for it! Bon Appetit!
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Project You

My home is nearly 30 years old.  I can’t imagine that I have lived in the same house for that length of time. Most of my friends have moved several times, but my husband and I have remained here and raised our three children in it.

With age, the house has needed some repairs, as well as some major renovations in the bathrooms and kitchen.  Windows and roof shingles have all be replaced, as well as, the water heater and furnace.

While flooring has been changed in most rooms, the ceramic tile in the kitchen, bathroom and along the hall is showing it’s age and needs some attending to.  Come to think of it the walls could use a fresh coat of paint, our deck outside could use a face lift and I can think of a list of repairs that need attention.

Being a homeowner means that there will always be projects around the house to keep it in good repair and functioning well.  If I neglect it, the results would be disastrous.

Our bodies, are just like our homes.  We need to keep them in good repair and functioning well.  If we neglect eating well, exercising or getting our proper sleep we are doing a disservice to ourselves.  There are going to be times that we don’t follow through with proper maintenance due to the busyness, stress, celebrations, vacations etc. and that’s ok!  However, if we understand the need to work on those areas and get back on track we will be able to live healthier lives as we age.

The next time you look in the mirror, or reach for little treat remember that you are an ongoing project and it’s vitally important, for your health’s sake, to keep working on you.  You are a work in progress; upgrade, maintain and renovate.  Be good to yourself and love your body.

me project

How much food should I really be eating?

When it comes to portion size, I find it difficult to know how much food I am actually consuming or serving up at home.

Restaurants tend to serve oversized portions of food so I usually divide my plate in half and only eat one portion of it.  However, if I can visualize portion sizes it is easier to control my food intake.

Here is an easy way to eyeball your food with everyday items:

facts-about-serving-sizes529995426-sep-2-2012-1-600x400                            portioncontrol_pancake2_lg

Baseball = Medium piece of fruit; 1 cup of salad greens

Tennis ball = 1 cup (250ml) of rice, pasta or ice cream

Golf ball = 2 tbsp.(30ml) of peanut butter, jam or salad dressing

Dice ~ 1 Dice = 1 tsp. (5ml) of butter

food portion visual2

Computer Mouse = 1 baked potato

3 Dice = 1oz (30g) of cheese

CD = the diameter of a pancake

Dental Floss Container = 1oz (30g) of chocolate

Large Egg = ¼ cup of raisins, dried fruit

Checkbook = 3oz of baked/grilled fish

Light bulb = 1 slice of pie

Another way to visualize the food portions is to use your hand:  here is a neat diagram to show you the proper portion size.

food portion with hand

Olive oil ~ Cold pressed or extra light?

There are a variety of different oils out on the market today and it’s hard to keep all of them straight. To make life easier I just try to stick with Olive Oil because I know that it’s quite healthy.

However, while I was out shopping I came across an Olive oil labelled extra light. I decided to pick up a bottle and give it a try. My normal go to oil is 100% cold pressed extra virgin olive oil.

I wasn’t expecting much difference in flavor or texture, but to my surprise when I opened it up it was much lighter in color and when I tasted the salad it was refreshingly light tasting. The strong flavor that I normally taste was not evident and allowed the flavors of the lettuce and veggies to shine through.

Not knowing why there was such a difference I decided to do some research. This is what I found. Cold pressed means that there was no heat or chemical additives used in the process of squeezing the oil out of the olives. Extra virgin means it’s the juice from the first pressing of the olives. The extra light olive oil means that they mix different grades of olive oil together.

Based on the research I will still stick with the cold pressed extra virgin olive oil, but will continue to use the new olive oil I discovered for salads.

If you put oil and vinegar on your salad what oil do you use? Have you discovered a light tasting oil you enjoy better in a salad? I’d love to have your feedback on your oil of choice.

A cold or detox symptoms?

Am I really sick with a cold or is my body ridding itself of toxins?  That’s the question I had to ask myself a few days into the detoxing process.   I have read that when your body goes into detox mode toxins are released from your cells so that they can be swept out of your system.   During this time you feel lethargic and tired, and you may develop a runny nose and other cold-like symptoms.  

This was happening to me as I started the process, but figured it was just my body doing it’s job.  However, I soon discovered that my husband had Bronchitis and that I was most likely getting a cold.   I sure didn’t want it to turn into bronchitis so I pulled out some home remedies and they seemed to have worked.

The first thing I did was cut a large onion into slices.  I placed them in the bedrooms beside the beds.  In the family room when we spend a good amount of time.   The onion is supposed to absorb the bacteria and germs in the air.  Secondly, I grabbed some oregano oil.  A few drops of oil under the tongue, daily during sickness, is supposed to kill upper respiratory tract microorganisms and parasites in the intestines.  Thirdly, I sliced lemons up and made sure I drank hot lemon water with honey.  It’s soothing on the throat and the lemon acts like a cleanser. I also doubled up on my Vitamin C intake.

The result.  The cold didn’t get too advanced and I’m quickly recovering.

These are just a few home remedies that work for me.  If you have any that work for you please share them.  I’d be interested in hearing how you ward off colds and flu.

Well, the sun is shining and we’re enjoying a lovely Easter weekend.  Happy Easter! and stay healthy!


Another one bites the dust!


How many times have you opened the fridge door and seen food rotting?  It’s happened to me on so many occasions.  I hate to see food go to waste, yet it’s my own fault.

I believe a lot of waste occurs, in my fridge, because I don’t prepare the food ahead of time.  If I want a quick snack I may reach for a carrot, but when I open the fridge and realize I have to peel and cut the carrot I close the fridge door and grab a cracker, cookie or a few almonds instead.  It’s more convenient and readily available.

Prepping is tedious, but it’s definitely worth the hassle.   Today, I spent time in the kitchen prepping some food.  

When produce is washed, peeled and ready to use it makes meals more convenient to prepare and more enticing when you want to grab a quick snack.

My kids love crunchy snacks and if I have carrot and celery sticks prepped in the fridge they will snack on them.   Grapes that are washed and ready to eat are always a favorite as well.

Red, green, yellow peppers washed and sliced are wonderful to make a quick stir-fry or add to an omelet or pasta sauce.

The reward, for my effort in the kitchen today, came after dinner tonight.  My husband wanted to have some coffee to finish off his meal.  I told him I had lemon wedges cut in the fridge and suggested having hot lemon water instead.  He opened the fridge, saw the Ziploc bags full of lemon wedges and decided to make the switch from coffee.

Small steps, make a huge impact on the road to being healthy.   This is one of them!