I can’t believe that my youngest monster is starting his senior year tomorrow. If you have been following me, you are familiar with my son, Joshua, who we discovered is lactose intolerant while he was still in elementary school. Having a child with a food intolerance always makes social events interesting. You never know where a food that your child might not tolerate is lurking and the school lunches, despite drastic jumps in awareness and interest in our child’s health, are not always the best choices for our individual children. The truth of the matter is that we all just want our children to be happy, healthy and safe!
I am lucky to know Barbara Haimowitz. Barbara is a retired transitional kindergarten teacher. Because of her experience working in various schools, Barbara has insider information on exactly what gets eaten during school lunches and what many of the challenges are.
While you can eat out and still stay healthy, it costs a small fortune to eat at those places that cater to organic fruits and vegetables and pasture-raised animals. So, unless you are well off financially and want you and your family to get and stay healthy, you really do need to spend some time in the kitchen. And most of us may enjoy cooking, or not, but we do not want to spend all day in the kitchen.
To that end, I have some tools in my kitchen that definitely make my life easier.
One of my favorites is the Amco Houseworks lemon juicer. You just cut a lemon in half, put half cut side up in the well and squeeze the top part down.
Why do I like it so much?
- It’s bright yellow color makes it easy to locate in my kitchen drawer.
- As described above, it is very easy to use.
- The holes in the bottom of the squeezer allow the juice to flow out but not the seeds.
- It is easy to wash and can even go on the top rack of the dishwasher.
I prefer fresh lemon juice in my recipes. This little, inexpensive kitchen tool provides the juice quickly and efficiently with little clean up to follow and no seeds.
Where to get one?
I bought mine in the grocery store for $9.99. They are also available on Amazon.
Let me know what you think!
Salt caves and rooms are yet another example of old meeting new in the world of health, wellness and general relaxation.
What is a salt room?
A salt room, or cave, is a room that is decorated with salt, usually Himalayan salt, to create a relaxing and soothing environment. It may be simulated to feel like a cave with dim lights, “boulders” of salt along the edges and even granular salt on the floor. Or it may be more like sitting in your living room perhaps with one or more walls made with salt bricks. Perhaps there will be a mural that depicts a beach scene or a picture of a Buddha statue.
A few days ago, I wrote about a mistake I made with an ingredient in a new recipe I was trying. The recipe was Beet and Beef Burgers from Clean Eating. Now, really I’ve been eating a fairly large variety of vegetables for a long time: pretty much since I outgrew the typical kid fare that many kids raised in the U.S. consume. I am even proud to say that my older son, who is a picky eater even at 19, can identify many vegetables that the average school child cannot. I remember watching an episode with Jaime Oliver with my son. Jaime was in a kindergarten classroom, holding up a tomato and the kids were looking stumped when he asked them what it was!
The FDA released a memo recently making the public aware that beauty products may be contaminated with mercury. You can see it here: http://www.fda.gov/ForConsumers/ConsumerUpdates/ucm294849.htm
Why is this a big deal?
Heavy metals are natural in our environment but when they build up in our bodies they become toxic and inflammatory. Mercury can cause agrophobia, panic attacks, and seizures. On the less extreme side, mercury toxicity can cause those annoying, little signs of “just getting older.” Things such as headaches, fatigue, achy and swollen joints, difficulty losing weight and more.
Depending on your diet, with a few nutritional tweaks and added supplements, those symptoms of “just getting older” can be a thing of the past. My grandmother was young and spry well into her 80’s!
Don’t eat mercury (or other heavy metals!)
I tell anyone who asks, “a recipe is just a guideline.” There is no reason to follow a recipe exactly. Frequently, I will leave an ingredient out or trade something but I almost always try the recipe as it is written before I start playing with it.
I had been looking at a recipe for “Beet and Beef Burgers” in Clean Eating magazine