A handy way to eat apricots year-round

Apricots have long been one of my favorite fruits, but they tend to be delicate and only available for a short span of time in our northern climate. So I was excited to see these dried apricots recently while visiting a Shop & Save supermarket in a nearby suburb.

The Awesome Apricot Yummy Fruit Bus. I'm on board with it.
The Awesome Apricot Yummy Fruit Bus. I’m on board with it.

The product would seem aimed at children since the apricots come in individual trays inside a box that looks like a small school bus. It’s branded the Awesome Apricot Yummy Fruit Bus.

Still, reading the nutrition label, this seemed like a no-brainer to try — no fat, almost no sodium and 11 grams of sugar per tray, considerably less than other dried fruits, such as figs, that I’ve bought in the past. Continue reading “A handy way to eat apricots year-round”

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Walmart, Aldi’s, others making fresh and organic food moves

Consumer desire to buy more unprocessed fresh and organic foods has definitely gotten the attention of the mainstream food retailing world. Three articles crossed my email recently confirming that.If you want to eat low-salt, low-fat and low-sugar, fresh is certainly the way to go for most of your meals, as I’ve been advocating here since having an angioplasty in 2012.

Mondelez has to compete with fruit for the healthy snack trade, can it?
Fresh is increasingly where it’s at for today’s food retailers.

Bare-bones food retailer Aldi, which specializes in featuring sore brands to hold costs down, is making several moves in fresh foods, according to Forbes and other media reports.

“The retailer is expanding the number of fresh foods offered, placing an emphasis on the perimeter rather than the packaged and processed foods in the center of the store. It’s making sure that dairy products are free from artificial growth hormones and all private label products—90% of the store—are now free from synthetic colors, partially hydrogenated oils and added MSG.

“Checkout lanes are being reconfigured to replace chocolates and candy with single-serve packages of nuts, trail mixes, dried fruits and granola bars,” Forbes reports. Continue reading “Walmart, Aldi’s, others making fresh and organic food moves”

Tilapia — with a little chili kick

Tilapia is one of my go-to fish choices these days because its quick to make. It’s not supposedly as healthy for us as salmon or other good-fat fish, but it can be made in lots of ways, check some of ym past recipes for it on our recipe page.

Tilapia is a fast, easy dish to make at home, or enjoy out as I did with this meal.
Tilapia is a fast, easy dish to make at home, or enjoy out as I did with this meal.

I recently saw this recipe from trainer Jillian Michaels on her site that I thought might interest you, especially if you’re into spicier fare. It includes chili powder and garlic powder. Continue reading “Tilapia — with a little chili kick”

My low-salt, low-fat, low-sugar pantry

Reducing the amount of salt, fat and sugar in the typical American diet can help reduce all sorts of negative health effects brought on by the way most American eat. For me, getting out the salt, fat and sugar became a must after having an angioplasty in 2012. I wrote in the early days of this blog about cleaning out my pantry of high-salt, high-fat, high-sugar offerings.

More than three years into the process of redefining how I shop, cook and eat, I thought it would be a good time for an update on what a low-salt, low-fat, low-sugar pantry can look like. Here’s a look at mine today.

My low-salt, low-fat, low-sugar pantry.
My low-salt, low-fat, low-sugar pantry.

Reviewing it from left to right, the canned tomatoes are all no-salt-added. Always check the labels, far too many brands adds tons of salt to mask the fact they use low-quality, poor-tasting tomatoes. San Marzano tomatoes from Italy usually have no salt added, but always check the labels to be sure.

Continue reading “My low-salt, low-fat, low-sugar pantry”

Salt and stomach cancer — one more reason to hold the salt

Salt is one of my food enemies, contributing to my high blood pressure and subsequent heart issues that led to my angioplasty in 2012.

I have worked mightily to get salt out of my diet by completely reinventing how I shop in supermarkets and other food stores and by carefully analyzing restaurant menus before eating out.

Salt can lead to stomach cancer, one more reason to get it out of your diet.
Salt can lead to stomach cancer, one more reason to get it out of your diet.

Recently, I came across another good reason to get the salt out of your diet, this article from India linking salt to stomach cancer. Continue reading “Salt and stomach cancer — one more reason to hold the salt”

The GMO food labeling battle is reaching fever pitch

The food industry continues to fight efforts to label foods that have genetically modified ingredients (GMOs) even as people across the country continue to push for such labeling. The battle is moving to Washington, D.C., these days as the industry tries to get Congress to do something to prevent a GMO labeling law from going into effect in Vermont.

Here's what food labels could look like in Vermont-- noting GMOs-- unless Congress moves to stop it.
Here’s what food labels could look like in Vermont– noting GMOs– unless Congress moves to stop it.

The latest is detailed in this Associated Press story I read earlier this week. Basically, food companies have to start saying on product labels whether they include GMOs starting in July under the Vermont law. The industry is lobbying Congress to pre-empt state laws on this issue, knowing that a Republican-controlled Congress would likely side with it, just as Republican generally did in coming out against new school lunch nutrition standards.

The U.S. secretary of agriculture has yet to take a position and has been trying to broker a compromise, so it’s not clear how the president would react to a Congressional move to essentially negate the Vermont law. Continue reading “The GMO food labeling battle is reaching fever pitch”

My diet is better than yours is…over?

ABC’s My Diet is Better than Yours ended somewhat abruptly last week, I thought. The series has been showing two one-hour episodes back-to-back, which appeals to those fo us who are into binge viewing these days.

Shaun T, the host of My Diet is Better than Yours. One of the most emotional TV hosts ever.
Shaun T, the host of My Diet is Better than Yours. One of the most emotional TV hosts ever.

The first hour last week was the final week contestants would have their trainers.

I was looking forward to seven weeks, or seven hours, of watching them try to lose weight on their own. but that time period was all compressed into the final hour show with a final weigh-in ala Biggest Loser, except without the studio audience and confetti at the end.

 

My take-aways from the show: Continue reading “My diet is better than yours is…over?”

Don’t forget to exercise

This blog is about food and trying to get the salt, fat and sugar out of your diet so you don’t find yourself with a blocked artery leading to your heart as I did in 2012. But any doctor or nutritionist will tell you regular exercise is important to your heart health as well.

I’ve incorporated exercise into my morning routine, normally doing 30 minutes on an exercise bike or rowing machine in my basement along with occasional weights. Lose It, which I use to track all my food consumption, loves sending me badges and recently sent an exercise one. This one shows I’ve exercised off at least 100 calories three times in a week.FitLikeAProLarge

One hundred calories is nothing, really, if you’re concerned about your weight. My 30 minutes of biking causes me to burn 350 calories, according the the app. Rowing burns 300, which I find difficult to believe because I feel the rowing is more difficult for me than the biking. Continue reading “Don’t forget to exercise”

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