What to know about counting carbs

If you have diabetes, it's important to understand carbohydrates. They can have a big impact on your blood glucose, or blood sugar. And counting carbs can help you keep your blood glucose at healthy levels. Carbs occur naturally in many foods. Sugars, starches and fiber are all carbohydrates. When choosing foods: • Reach for non-starchy vegetables. They're lower in carbs and won't affect your blood sugar much. Leafy greens, broccoli, tomatoes and green beans are all non-starchy vegetables....

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11/21/2023 2:35:00 PM Comments(0)

Grab the good stuff on your next grocery run

You make important choices in grocery store aisles—choices that can affect your energy levels and your health. So it's wise to have a game plan for how to fill your cart. These tips can help you. Make a list . Pick a day on the weekend to plan meals for the week. Check your fridge and pantry to identify ingredients you need for meals and snacks. Shop the perimeter first . The outer aisles of grocery stores contain some of the most nutritious choices, like fresh produce. Pump up the produce...

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8/25/2023 1:28:00 PM Comments(0)

Make water your first choice

Feeling thirsty? How about a glass of cool, refreshing water? When it comes to beverage options, your first choice should be water. Why is that? Water is a great alternative to sweetened drinks, such as certain soft drinks, sweet tea, sports drinks and energy drinks. Sugar-sweetened beverages tend to pack a lot of calories but few or no nutrients. Health experts call these empty calories , and there can be a lot of them in just one drink. Take one 12-ounce can of regular soda. It can contain as ...

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7/24/2023 11:01:00 AM Comments(0)

Green and good for you

Could your mealtimes use a touch more green? For a variety of nutrients, eat a rainbow of produce colors—including leafy greens. They help supply nutrients your body needs, like vitamins A and K and folate, but not too many calories. Lettuce is one type of leafy green. But there are more types of lettuce to discover besides the trusty iceberg variety. And, in addition to lettuce, plenty of other leafy greens—from arugula to spinach—deserve a place on your plate. For lettuces, t...

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3/27/2023 9:24:00 AM Comments(1)

Food Safety 101

Foodborne illnesses affect many people every year. Food poisoning can occur when foods are improperly cooked, handled or stored. Bacteria, viruses, parasites and toxins can cause food contamination. You can keep friends and family safe from food poisoning by following simple precautions. Keep a clean kitchen Cleanliness is key to preventing food poisoning. Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and warm water before handling food. Rinse fruits and vegetables under running water to remove dirt and ...

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1/25/2023 3:04:00 PM Comments(0)

Fewer Sweets, More Sweetness

Chocolate kisses, chocolate covered strawberries, and candy hearts. Valentine's Day may mean time with your sweetheart, but for many people, it also means a candy overload. As the bacteria in your mouth snacks on all that sugar, it creates a cavity-causing acid. This is a good time of year to cut back on the sweets and find some fun, healthy ways to celebrate. These five Valentine's Day surprises will up the fun factor and make everyone smile: 1. Send a fruity message to the class. With a felt-t...

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1/25/2023 2:59:00 PM Comments(0)

How to add more whole grains to your diet

You may have heard that you should eat more whole grains. But knowing exactly what a whole grain is can be confusing. Here's a look at what they are and how to find them. What is a whole grain? Foods made from wheat, rice, oats, cornmeal, barley or other cereal grains are categorized as grain products. That includes bread, pasta, cereal and grits. Some of these products are whole grains, while others are refined grains. Whole grains are made up of the entire grain kernel—bran, germ and end...

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7/28/2022 12:20:00 PM Comments(0)

Healthy food shopping on a budget

Have you changed your grocery shopping habits in the face of rising food prices? You might find that it's not always easy to eat healthy on a limited budget. By making strategic changes to how you approach this household chore, you can stock your fridge and pantry with healthy foods and still save money while doing it. Start by following these six tips. 1. Plan ahead. This first step is perhaps the most important. Take stock of what you have at home so your produce doesn't wilt and your pantry i...

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5/23/2022 12:15:00 PM Comments(0)

Are You Eating Too Much Sodium?

If you're not paying attention to your sodium intake, you're likely getting too much. And your health could pay the price. A whopping 90% of Americans eat too much sodium. Most adults get around 3,400 milligrams mg daily. But the recommended upper limit is 2,300 mg. Sodium helps the body maintain a healthy fluid balance. It's also key for normal nerve and muscle function. But too much causes the body to retain fluids, which can raise blood pressure and damage blood vessels. That can lead to high...

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2/24/2022 9:33:00 AM Comments(0)

Be wary of bogus weight loss claims

Losing weight is rarely fast and easy. So it may be tempting to try a product or diet that promises to make the process go quickly or claims you won't have to change how you eat or exercise. Unfortunately, there are no magical solutions to safe and permanent weight loss. Real success means healthy, long-term lifestyle changes to diet and exercise habits. But with so many advertisers and scammers claiming these extraordinary weight-loss results, how can you sort out fact from fake? Sc...

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12/9/2021 4:40:00 PM Comments(2)

Pass the protein

Protein is good for the body in many ways. Here are 10 key facts to know about this important nutrient: 1. Protein is found in foods from both plants and animals, such as: • Beans and peas. • Dairy products, like milk, cheese and yogurt. • Eggs. • Meats and poultry. • Fish. • Nuts and seeds. • Soy products. • Whole grains and vegetables, in lesser amounts. 2. Most people, 9 years and older, should eat 5 to 7 ounces of protein a day, depending on th...

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2/19/2021 10:03:00 AM Comments(0)

Calling all Bakers

Go ahead. Have your cake and eat it too—without guilt. Baked goodies do have a place in a healthy diet. That's if you sneak in these tweaks for better-for-you treats. Don’t worry - you won't be sacrificing flavor. 1. Get stingy with sugar. Try reducing the amount of sugar in a recipe by one-quarter to one-third. Chances are, you won't notice the difference. 2. Make over muffins and quick breads. You can usually cut saturated fat and calories by trading applesauce for the oil in recip...

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2/22/2019 11:30:00 AM Comments(0)

Healthy Baking Ideas

Go ahead. Have your cake and eat it too—without guilt. Baked goodies do have a place in a healthy diet. That's if you sneak in these tweaks for better-for-you treats. And no, you won't be sacrificing flavor. 1. Get stingy with sugar. Try reducing the amount of sugar in a recipe by one-quarter to one-third. Chances are, you won't notice the difference. 2. Make over muffins and quick breads. You can usually cut saturated fat and calories by trading applesauce for the oil in recipes. 3. Be fu...

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8/29/2018 11:43:00 AM Comments(0)

How to choose healthy fats

Fat has quite the reputation as a dietary supervillain, but there's more to fat than that. A little dietary fat is essential for good health. In addition, some types of fat in modest amounts may even help protect your health. Other fats, however, may harm your health if you eat them too much. Here's a closer look at these bad and good fats. The bad guys: Saturated and trans fats These two fats raise LDL blood cholesterol—and with it your risk of heart disease and stroke: Saturated fat. Thi...

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8/11/2017 2:45:00 PM Comments(0)

Savor Some Sorghum

Sorghum. Say it out loud, and it sounds like a complaint about dental pain, but it's actually a healthy whole grain that fits nicely into a gluten-free diet, spurring new popularity for the grain in this country. What is it? Sorghum is an ancient cereal grain from Africa and India. For people living in those areas, it's food. In the U.S., sorghum has until recently been used mostly for livestock feed—except in the South, where it's made into a sweet syrup. What does it look like? Sorg...

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5/22/2017 10:38:00 AM Comments(0)

Farmers Markets: Local Treasures

From farm to table. That's a popular phrase that makes anything it's referring to sound better. You just know that honey straight from a nearby farm is going to taste amazing. The same goes for any of the plentiful produce waiting for you at a farmers market. Freshness is what makes farmers markets attractive. Most of the food you'll find there has been picked at the peak of its freshness and flavor. If you like peaches from the grocery store, you're going to love peaches from the farmers' marke...

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5/22/2017 10:37:00 AM Comments(0)

Mad about Melons

At last! Melon season is fast approaching. That means soon you'll be treating yourself to one of summer's true delights: a ripe, juicy, sweet melon. Besides tasting oh-so-good, melons are good for you. They are rich in vitamin C, which helps boost the immune system. Cantaloupes are an especially good source of the vitamin. A little less than a half cup of this warm-weather favorite provides up to two-thirds of the current recommended amount of daily vitamin C. Some melons are also an excellent s...

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4/24/2017 3:33:00 PM Comments(0)

Please Pass the Potassium

It's hard to overstate all the good things potassium does for you. This mineral helps your nerves work, your muscles contract and your heartbeat stay regular. It moves nutrients into cells and waste products out of them. And potassium helps keep your blood pressure in a healthy range by blunting the effects of sodium. Even though potassium is crucial to for good health, chances are you're not getting enough of it. The average adult is encouraged to get 4,700 milligrams of potassium every day. Bu...

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2/20/2017 4:31:00 PM Comments(1)

Put red and green on your Christmas dish list

Chances are, you plan to deck the halls for a very merry holiday season and what better way to evoke the spirit of Christmas past, present and future than with a traditional red and green color scheme? Bring those holiday hues into your festive feasts, and you're sure to keep good health on the menu—even as you sample the occasional treat. A number of fresh reds and greens are in the produce aisles now, waiting to star in your winter meals. Look for red foods, such as apples, beets, cranbe...

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12/20/2016 12:52:00 PM Comments(1)

Five ways to cut back on added sugars

If you pay attention to dietary headlines, you've probably heard the fuss over foods with added sugars. And you might wonder: How could something so deliciously sweet be so potentially bad for your health? First, it's important to remember that sugars occur naturally in many foods, from milk to fruit. But that's not the issue here. Instead, we're talking sugars, syrups and caloric sweeteners that are added to foods when they're processed or prepared. If their calories make up too much of your di...

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12/20/2016 12:46:00 PM Comments(0)

Savor the Flavor of Eating Right

The Florida Department of Health in Polk County DOH-Polk recognizes March as National Nutrition Month. This year’s theme, Savor the Flavor of Eating Right , encourages individuals to discover new flavors and appreciate good food while experiencing the social aspects food can bring. Eating healthy doesn’t have to be a chore. There are many innovative ways people can include healthy and fresh ingredients into their daily diet, says Dr. Joy Jackson, director of the Florida Department of...

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3/29/2016 9:16:00 AM Comments(0)

Broccoli Stalks Are a Tasty Treat

Of all the perfectly edible foods that routinely get tossed in the trash, broccoli stalks would probably rank near the top. Most of us throw them out without a parting glance. And that's a shame. The stalks we spurn are as flavorful as the florets we routinely eat. Broccoli stalks are also an excellent source of vitamin C, which helps fight infections, and folate, which may protect against both cancer and heart disease. Plus broccoli stalks are packed with fiber, which can help you feel full. No...

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6/24/2015 11:56:00 AM Comments(0)

Healthy Eating: Tips for Staying on Course

Making healthy lifestyle changes can feel overwhelming at times. However, taking these small steps one at a time may lead to more profound changes over time. Watson Clinic dietitians recommend the following: 1 Rethink how you view your food and lifestyle choices. Avoid using the phrase "dieting," which has a temporary connotation attached to it. Instead, commit to making healthy lifestyle changes that will stay with you throughout your life. 2 Find one or two friends who also want to make ...

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3/12/2015 1:18:00 PM Comments(0)