By Rebecca Scritchfield MA, RD, LD - DietsInReview.com
Love agave? Maybe you should think twice about how much "love" you give it. If you aren't familiar, agave nectar (ah gav ee) is a sweetener that ranges in color from light to dark, depending on the processing time and amount of minerals in the product. It is less thick than honey or maple syrup and it tastes sweeter too. The agave sweetener comes from various species of the agave plant. After the juice has been extracted, it is heated to create simple sugars. The final product is some percentage of the sugars glucose and fructose.
So far agave should remind you of typical sugar sweeteners - maybe even high fructose corn syrup (HFCS), right? But the reality is agave has been given a "health halo" in the last couple of years. Since agave is vegan and can be processed at lower heat temperatures to satisfy raw food enthusiasts, it is an obvious desirable sweetener for some. But people have been flocking to use agave more and more
Blog Posts by DietsInReview
By Rebecca Scritchfield MA, RD, LD - DietsInReview.comRead More »from Agave Not a Healthy Sugar Alternative After All
By Rebecca Scritchfield MA, RD, LD - DietsInReview.comRead More »from Heart-Healthy Benefits of the DASH Diet
February is American Heart Month, a time dedicated to raising awareness about heart disease and stroke, the number one killer in the United States. One way to reduce your risk of heart disease while maintaining a healthy lifestyle is with the DASH Diet, of which many people are not aware. The National Institutes of Health recommends this diet plan, which stands for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension.
In recent studies for the DASH Diet, the addition of fruits, vegetables and dairy products lowered blood pressure - even when sodium was as high as 3,000 milligrams each day! Every millimeter the blood pressure falls reduces the risk of heart attack and strokes for people with high blood pressure. It's worth believing that small changes will garner big results. Your everyday decisions really do matter.
The DASH "diet" focuses on an eating plan that is rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, and low-fat or non-fat dairy.
By Chef Devin Alexander for DietsInReview.comRead More »from 12 Pantry Must-Haves for Healthy Cooking
During the months of February and March, you'll find me filling in as the featured guest chef at DietsInReview.com. I'm excited to share some of my favorite tips, tricks and ideas for getting out of the drive-thru, back in to the kitchen and making healthy cooking fun and accessible.
One question people frequently ask is "What do I need in my pantry to live a healthy lifestyle?". Obviously this can vary by person based on goals or preference. However, there are definitely items I'd consider "must-haves" to set yourself up for success. In my upcoming book "I Can't Believe It's Not Fattening!" you'll find I use all of these ingredients to create delicious dishes that are family favorites, they're just light on the fat and calories.
The following 12 items are what I consider must-haves when stocking a healthy kitchen.
1. Strong-flavored Extra Virgin Olive Oil - Since you only need a little, I like to use an olive oil with a robust flavor,
By Rebecca Scritchfield MA, RD, LD - DietsInReview.comRead More »from 3 Ways to Improve Your Cholesterol Levels
February is American Heart Month. It's a time to raise awareness about heart disease and stroke, the number one killer in our country, that way you and the people you love don't become a statistic.
Do you know your numbers? Your cholesterol numbers that is. You should have your cholesterol measured annually after age 30, especially if there is a family history of high cholesterol or heart problems. High cholesterol can double the risk for heart disease. It can be possible for your body to produce too much cholesterol, even if you take steps to lower your cholesterol.
However, many people successfully lower their cholesterol with some simple changes. There are three ways to improve your cholesterol levels.
1. Diet: Start by eating more fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Use low- or non-fat dairy. Replace olive, grapeseed, canola or safflower oils for butter, lard or margarine. Avoid foods that contain saturated, hydrogenated,
By Rebecca Scritchfield MA, RD, LD - DietsInReview.comRead More »from 8 Preventable Heart Disease Risks
The bad news: Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the U.S., for both men and women. The good news: There are eight ways you can prevent and reduce your risk for heart disease. Even better news, they all support one another. It's like a domino effect, you choose one, and it will help you in doing another one.
Here are the top eight behaviors that will help you to prevent heart disease.
These first three go hand-in-hand. Eat healthy and exercise to help yourself lose or maintain a healthy weight.
1. Eat a healthy diet. Eating healthful meals and snacks will help you to avoid heart disease and its many complications. Consume a diet rich in fresh fruits and vegetable. Prevent high blood pressure by consuming foods low in saturated fat and cholesterol and high in fiber. Keep blood pressure low by limiting salt or sodium in your diet.
2. Maintain a healthy weight. Being overweight or obese can increase your risk for heart
- DietsInReview | Work + Money – Mon, Feb 8, 2010 4:59 PM EST
By Brandi Koskie - Senior Editor at DietsInReview.com
Last night during Super Bowl XLIV, most of America saw several commercials announcing the return of Denny's Free Grand Slam Breakfast for 2010. It's the second year the restaurant is offering this free breakfast deal, and just like last year there are sure to be lines wrapped around the building on Tuesday, February 9, when the free breakfast is available.
While the meal won't cost you anything (consider a generous tip for your over-worked waitress), your body is most definitely going to pay the price.
The original Denny's Grand Slam Breakfast, the combo advertised, includes 2 pancakes, 2 sausage links, 2 strips of bacon and 2 fried eggs. Nutritionally, that plate will set you back:
- 795 Calories
- 50g Fat (daily recommendation is 65g total)
- 460mg Cholesterol (more than the 300mg/day recommendation)
- 2237mg Sodium (more than the 2200mg/day recommendation)
- 65g Carbs
- 2g Dietary Fiber
- 4g Sugar
By Rebecca Scritchfield MA, RD, LD - DietsInReview.comRead More »from Weight Loss Key to a Healthy Heart
Curious why weight loss is necessary in preventing heart disease. Controlling your weight is a step toward controlling heart disease risk factors, like blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes. Even if you don't have these heart disease risk factors now, you could always develop them.
If you're overweight or obese, it's vitally important that you try to lose weight. A minimal reduction of just 5 to 10 percent of your current weight can lower your risk for heart disease. For instance, if you weigh 200 pounds, a mere 20 pound weight loss can help to save your life and prevent this disease that is the number one killer of women in the U.S.
The most important thing you can do to promote weight loss is reduce your caloric intake by 500 to 1,000 calories each day, and engage in more physical activity, like a 30 minute walk daily. At a loss of two pounds a week, you'll reach your goal within three months. What's even better, it
By Carmen Staicer - Chief Mom at DietsInReview.comRead More »from Why Women Need a Kegel Exercise Regimen
Any woman who's had a baby will tell you that her body hasn't been the same since. Varicose veins, wider hips, extra weight, even bigger feet - nothing seems to go back to normal. It's worth it, though, when you look at that sweet little baby.
One area of a woman's body that suffers greatly, and gets very little attention, is the pelvic floor. This area of the body is responsible for carrying the baby, and endures a great amount of stress and often becomes weak. With this, women experience urinary incontinence. That's where kegel exercises come in, named for Dr. Arnold Kegel.
Often related to an enhanced sexual experience, kegel exercises help to restore and strengthen the muscles that surround and support the bladder, uterus, rectum, and urethra - the pelvic floor muscles. These muscles are also known as your pubococcygeal muscles. And if postpartum urinary issues are affecting you, this one surefire way to prevent it.
By Rebecca Scritchfield MA, RD, LD - DietsInReview.comRead More »from 5 Foods to Prevent Heart Disease
In case you hadn't heard, February is American Heart Month, an initiative to raise awareness about heart disease and stroke, the number one killer in the U.S.
Eating a healthy diet can be a key method of preventing heart disease. We're highlighting five heart-healthy foods that can literally save your health. We recognize that these are not the only five foods that protect your heart, but they stand out as star performers and great additions to any diet.
1. Garlic: This herb is ideal for heart health. Numerous studies have shown the potential benefits of regular garlic consumption on blood pressure, platelet aggregation, serum triglyceride level, and cholesterol levels - all of which keep your heart performing. Garlic also makes a great seasoning for food so you can greatly reduce salt.
2. Salmon: Make the swap from a saturated fat burger to a salmon fillet. While some saturated fat is fine, a little goes a long way. The average
- DietsInReview | Healthy Living – Tue, Jan 26, 2010 5:47 PM EST
By Brandi Koskie - DietsInReview.comRead More »from 5 Ways to Have Your Girl Scout Cookies and Eat Them, too!
Just three weeks ago you made a resolution to get fit, start a diet, or eat healthier. And then your doorbell rang and a Girl Scout announced that cookie season had begun and waved that tempting order form under your nose to coax you right out of your resolve and back in to the familiar loving arms of her $3.50 a box cookie haven.
If you're struggling between wanting to indulge in your favorite Thin Mint, Samoa or traditional Trefoil, don't fear the double-edged sword that is the Girl Scout Cookie. You can support your friendly neighborhood scout and not wipe out your weight loss goals in one crumby setting. It's mind over matter, and your mind is far stronger than the sugar in those cookies.
Follow these five tips for surviving Girl Scout Cookie season with your willpower, weight and philanthropic needs all satisfied:
1. Think Moderation. No matter what you're eating it's all about moderation. Don't eat the cookies three times a day, or an