Our last recipe in honor of American Heart Month is a lycopene-rich tomato soup. Better than anything you will ever get in a can, this heart-healthy recipe is loaded with antioxidants, particularly lycopene. Lycopene is the carotenoid that gives tomatoes their red color. It is particularly beneficial for cardiovascular health and heart disease prevention.
When it comes to heart health, studies have discovered that high levels of lycopene in the blood are associated with a lower risk of cardiovascular disease in both men and women. It may also have cholesterol-lowering properties.
Cooking tomatoes increases the bioavailability of lycopene, making it easier for the body to absorb. This recipe will soon become a comfort food staple. Continue reading “Dinner Tonight: Heart-Healthy Tomato Soup”
Proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) are a popular class of heartburn medications that includes Prilosec, Nexium and Prevacid. These medications, which are available over the counter (without a prescription), lower the amount of stomach acid produced by the stomach. Concern has been increasing that Americans might be overusing PPIs to treat minor cases of heartburn or acid reflux. And, a new study published in the journal JAMA Neurology, shows heartburn drugs and dementia are linked, in that these drugs may raise a senior’s risk of developing dementia.
Researchers collected data from a large German health insurance firm on almost 74,000 seniors aged 75 or older. The data ran from 2004 to 2011, and included diagnoses and drug prescriptions. About 2,950 patients regularly used PPIs, which for this study was defined as at least one PPI prescription in each quarter of an 18-month interval. Regular users of PPIs had a 44% increased risk of dementia compared with those not receiving PPI medications. Continue reading “New Study Links Heartburn Drugs and Dementia”
Stuffed peppers are delicious, but if you want to try something different, stuffed sweet potatoes may become your new favorite. This recipe combines three superfoods – lentils, sweet potatoes and kale – to make this hearty and heart-healthy dish, loaded with fiber and all sorts of nutrients.
Lentils have a wide spectrum of essential amino acids and are a good protein source. They are rich in folic acid, iron, phosphorus and copper. Sweet potatoes are loaded with vitamin A, vitamin C, potassium and fiber. Not to be outdone, kale is is rich in vitamins A, C, and K, as well as fiber, calcium and iron.
In keeping with our theme this month of heart-healthy recipes, this is a great one to try. Continue reading “Dinner Tonight: Stuffed Sweet Potatoes”
The decision to start creating a healthy home is not always an easy one. Many people feel overwhelmed and confused by the process. I often hear questions like: What is a healthy home? Where do I begin? What might be toxic for me and my family? Remember, changing to a healthier way of life is a learning process. It does not happen overnight. Each move is a stepping stone toward the goal of healthier living. Be patient. This should be an exciting and positive experience. Here is some information to help you on your journey.
Most detergents, commercial cleaning agents and personal hygiene products populating grocery shelves contain chemicals that can contaminate our homes, contribute to health complaints, and end up in our environment, affecting plants, animals and our ecosystem. These daily-used products may contain formaldehyde, benzene, trichloroethylene, toluene, as well as many other chemicals. It is important to educate ourselves about the products we use and understand how they can affect us. By switching to natural home cleaning and personal care products, you can reduce possible harmful exposure, while promoting a healthier home and planet. Continue reading “A Healthy Home – Some Steps to Take”
Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States. The good news about heart disease is that it is largely preventable.
The heart is a muscle designed to circulate blood throughout the body. Like any muscle, it benefits from regular exercise. A healthy and active lifestyle will help keep the heart strong.
We can also have a huge impact on our heart’s health by choosing foods that encourage circulation, are low in unhealthy fats, and reduce the amount of cholesterol circulating in our arteries.
Salmon is one of those foods. Wild salmon is an excellent source of omega-3s, and it can help to lower LDL levels and reduce the plaque deposits in blood vessels that contribute to heart disease. The following recipe includes another heart healthy food, avocado. Avocado is rich in heart-healthy potassium, folate, and oleic acid, while grapefruits add vitamin C, a potent antioxidant that aids in reducing cholesterol levels. Continue reading “Dinner Tonight: Baked Salmon Salad”