Archive for the 'Health and Fitness' Category

Top 10 Reasons to Go Organic

Posted on Aug. 24th 2010 1 Comment »

The central idea behind natural and organic farming is sustainability. It represents the “True” cost of production, taking all environmental factors into consideration unlike almost all other goods currently produced. By increasing the health of the environment, you are insuring the health of the crops and ultimately the health of all living things. It’s about maintaining natural ecological balances. This beautiful balance gives us much more than just healthy fruits and vegetables.

1) Fresh organic produce contains on average 50% more vitamins, minerals, enzymes and other micro-nutrients than intensively farmed produce. Science says that it’s good for you.

2) Going organic is the only practical way to avoid eating genetically modified (GM) food. Organic producers are leaders in innovative research. Organic farmers have led the way, largely at their own expense, with innovative on-farm research aimed at reducing pesticide use and minimizing agriculture’s impact on the environment.

3) If you eat dairy or meat products, going organic has never been more essential to safeguard you and your family’s health. Intensively-reared dairy cows and farm animals are fed a dangerous cocktail of antibiotics, growth promoting drugs, anti-parasite drugs and many other medicines on a daily basis, whether they have an illness or not. These drugs are passed directly onto the consumers of their dairy produce or meat.

4) Organic farms support and nurture our beautiful and diverse wildlife. Organic farms nurture the whole environment, wherever you are. Organic agriculture respects the balance demanded of a healthy ecosystem: wildlife is encouraged by including forage crops in rotation and by retaining fence rows, wetlands, and other natural areas.

5) You will dramatically reduce the amount of pesticide residue you ingest on a daily basis. Many EPA-approved pesticides were registered long before extensive research linked these chemicals to cancer and other diseases. Organic agriculture is one way to prevent any more of these chemicals from getting into the air, earth and water that sustain us.

6) Reduced reliance on chemical and agri-engineering corporations. The loss of a large variety of species (biodiversity) is one of the most pressing environmental concerns. The good news is that many organic farmers and gardeners have been collecting and preserving seeds, and growing unusual varieties for decades.

7) Organic farming is healthier for the soil. - Soil is the foundation of the food chain. The primary focus of organic farming is to use practices that build healthy soils.

8) Organic farms respect our water resources - The elimination of polluting chemicals and nitrogen leaching, done in combination with soil building, protects and conserves water resources.

9) Organic dairy cows are not injected with milk-boosting hormones such as recombinant bovine somatotrophin (rBST) which may increase insulin levels in humans.

10) Organic produce simply tastes so much better. Fruit and vegetables full of juice and flavor, and so many different varieties to try! There are about 100 different kinds of organic potatoes in production, and that’s just potatoes!

Posted by poppa-d | in Health and Fitness

10 Tricks to Eat Less

Posted on Aug. 10th 2010 No Comments »

Nowadays, more and more people are trying to reduce their calorie intake. How much we eat does not affect only our looks, but our health as well. Moreover, some even believe that eating less will extend their life span and will help them avoid health problems associated with aging.

The “French paradox” is a very good example for this matter. Only 7% of French people are obese (as compared to more than 22% of all Americans) although they do not eat only salads all day. French people, like everyone else, like to smoke drink wine, eat food products high in calories (buttered croissants, goose liveres, pastries, etc.) The only difference is that they eat less of everything as they are used to serving smaller portions.

Researchers found that an average food portion in Paris has about 270g, while in Philadelphia an average food portion has about 350g. A soft drink is 52% larger in the US as compared to France.

We thought that presenting some tricks that might help us reduce the quantity of food we eat and prevail in the battle with calories would be helpful.

  1. Eat less, but more often. Is better to eat smaller portions than few large ones because in this way food is properly digested and nutrients are better used. When we eat a lot at one sitting the body cannot effectively “process” all the food.
  2. Drink water before you eat. This will make you feel full and will decrease your appetite.
  3. Eat on smaller plates. The main advantage of a smaller plate is that it gives the impression of a normal serving although it holds less food. When going to a restaurant switch the dinner plate with a salad one.
  4. Brush your teeth. Some people might refuse to have quick snack or even a meal when their teeth have just been brushed and feel clean.
  5. Include more vegetables in your meal. Eating more vegetables can make us feel satiated even if few calories are assimilated. So, look in your meal for ingredients that can be substituted with vegetables.
  6. No more sugar. Sugar is a very important source of calories, causing an increase in appetite. In 100 g of sugar there are approximately 400 calories. Try to replace as much as possible those products that contain sugar. (e.g. replace soft drinks with seltzer water)
  7. Eat slower. The body must have time to process and fully estimate the quantity of food that is eaten.  When we eat fast, we sometimes might not realize that we are satiated.
  8. Say NO to chips, snacks, breads etc. Besides the fact that such products are well known for their “weight attraction” due to their ingredients, such products can make us want to eat and drink more (especially salted ones).
  9. Chew gum. Chewing sugar-free gum can give us the impression that we are eating. So, when hunger strikes, try some gum first.
  10. Go for more taste and less quantity. 43 percent of consumers choosing organic food do so because of “better taste”. You feel more satiated with fewer calories.
Posted by poppa-d | in Health and Fitness