5 Natural Supplements that Help Heal Your Body

If you’re already dealing with a cold or flu virus that you might have caught from the kids or elsewhere, it’s time to take charge and keep away the germs. Of course there’s always your family physician you can visit so that you can enjoy the holidays, but who wants to wait at a clinic or schedule an appointment? Instead you could try taking natural supplements that will naturally heal your body. Besides dealing with the common cold, you may also be struggling with a muscle injury, inflammation from a sprain, or other sports related injuries. Look to this guide so that you have a good idea about how each supplement will help heal and protect your body from injuries and illnesses, the natural way.

Glucosamine and Chondroitin – Both of these natural multivitamin ranges help with repairing your joints and also reduce the inflammation. Connective tissue healing takes time, but both of these supplements will expedite the process.

Vitamin C – You’re probably very familiar with this vitamin, but if you need a reminder vitamin C helps with your immune system. No, it doesn’t completely cure a flue or cold, but it does help your body fight off a virus more successfully. As opposed to taking Airborne, opt for the direct version of vitamin C by drinking more orange juice or taking a vitamin C daily supplement.

Vitamin B3 – If you like to eat fish a lot you already have some of this vitamin in your system, but probably not nearly enough. Restore your muscles after difficult workouts with this supplement. Since there is only about 15mg of vitamin B3 in a fillet of fish, you need much more of this vitamin. Use this supplement as a convenient way to provide your body with more protein and more power for a speedy recovery.

Cetyl Myristoleate – Have you heard of this supplement before? If not, it is used to help with arthritis. 12-15 grams over a series of 30 days will help with arthritic symptoms and should also help with the pain that you experience due to inflamed joints. It also works well for sprains and strains since arthritis is very similar, except arthritis is more on-going than a temporary sprain.

Vitamin E – This powerful antioxidant is another great supplement that will help the cells in your body fend off harmful viruses that threaten your system. If you happen to like sunflower seeds you’re in luck because vitamin E is found in this type of seed. Take this supplement and eat your sunflower seeds and you’ll be thrilled at how your body naturally heals itself.

Of course natural supplements are not a cure all, so if you have any questions or doubts it is important to consult a physician or someone you trust. However, supplements are important to take and will improve your health and diet. Of course obtaining these supplements in the foods that you eat on a daily basis is also important. Rest up and feel better this holiday season by taking supplements and taking care of both you and your family!

About the Author

Sierra is a freelance writer who enjoys learning about supplements because they help her improve her health!

*Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.com.*

Here’s a fig-tastic appetizer to serve this holiday season, courtesy of BetterEats.com, Everyday Health’s new food site!

Figs Stuffed with Gorgonzola

Ingredients

16 medium figs, dried, about 8 ounces

1/2 cup port

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

1/4 cup crumbled Gorgonzola cheese

1/4 cup reduced-fat cream cheese, softened

1 teaspoon fresh rosemary, chopped

2 ounces prosciutto, sliced and trimmed of fat

Black pepper, coarsely ground, to taste

Preparation

1. Snip the stem off each fig and make a crisscross cut two-thirds of the way down to partially open the fig. Trim the base of each fig so it will sit upright when finished.

2. Place the figs, port and vinegar in a small saucepan; cook, uncovered, over low heat, shaking the pan occasionally, until the figs are plumped and softened and most of the liquid is reduced, 10 to 15 minutes. Set aside until cool enough to handle.

3. Meanwhile, combine Gorgonzola, cream cheese and rosemary in a small bowl; blend with a fork.

4. Cover and refrigerate until the figs are cooled.

5. Cut prosciutto into 1/4-inch-wide ribbons.

6. Using a teaspoon, melon baller or small spoon, place a dollop of cheese mixture in the opening of each fig.

7. Garnish each appetizer with a ribbon of prosciutto. Dust with a grinding of pepper.

*Recipe and image courtesy of BetterEats.com.*

Tis’ the season for turkey, cranberries, and more – so why not wrap them up with organic greens and enjoy as a light, healthy lunch?!

Oven Roasted Turkey Wrap

Ingredients

4 pieces sliced turkey
2 slices brie cheese
4 Tbsp. cranberry chutney or sauce
Mixed organic field greens
Any type of wrap bread

Preparation

Place wrap flat on counter and add mixed greens to center of wrap. Take pieces of leftover turkey slices and place on top of greens. Place the sliced brie over the turkey and pour chutney/cranberry sauce on top of that.

To roll your wrap, start from edge closest to you, and wrap over the ingredients. Take the opposite edge and place over roll. Fold and tuck edges inside of wrap. Cut in middle and serve on a platter.

*Recipe courtesy of Coffee-mate and Kristine Quattrone of Q Events.*

Bread pudding is always an indulgence, and the addition of pumpkin takes this dessert to a whole new level! Yum!

Pumpkin Bread Pudding

Ingredients

3/4 loaf baguette, cubed (“Mom” prefers a whole wheat baguette)
1-1/4 cup pumpkin pie filling
3/4 cup NEW Seasonal Coffee-mate Sugar Free Pumpkin Spice
1-1/2 cup milk (“Mom” prefers organic low-fat milk)
3 large egg yolks (“Mom” prefers organic, cage-free eggs)
2 Tbsp. granulated sugar (“Mom” prefers organic sugar)
1 Tbsp. pumpkin pie spice

Preparation

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Combine your leftover coffee creamer and milk in a small saucepan over medium heat and bring to a simmer. Scoop remaining pumpkin pie filling into a separate bowl and whisk in yolks, sugar and pumpkin pie spice. Slowly whisk in hot cream mixture until combined. Strain the custard into a clean bowl and set aside.

Take leftover bread loaf or dinner rolls and cut into cubes. Scatter bread cubes in a buttered 9 by 9-inch baking dish or pan. Pour the custard over the bread, pressing down on the bread to totally submerge it in the custard. Top with sprinkle of pumpkin pie spice. Let sit for about 15 minutes to allow the bread to soak in the custard.

Place the pan in the oven and bake about 50 to 60 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool for at least 30 minutes before serving.

*Recipe courtesy of Coffee-mate and Kristine Quattrone of Q Events.*

Delicious and perfect for the season, this Apple Pie Smoothie makes a unique treat for dessert!

Apple Pie Smoothie

Ingredients

3/4 cup apple pie filling
1/4 cup all-natural Coffee-mate Natural Bliss Caramel
3 Tbsp. plain yogurt (“Mom” prefers organic Greek yogurt)
Pinch of cinnamon
Ice cubes

Preparation

Remove insides of leftover apple pie filling and place in blender. Add leftover coffee creamer, yogurt, cinnamon, cinnamon and handful of ice cubes. Blend for 15 seconds.

Serve in a tall glass. Garnish with cinnamon on top. Enjoy!

*Recipe courtesy of Coffee-mate and Kristine Quattrone of Q Events.*

How to Keep Healthy During the Holidays

The holidays are just around the corner, first comes the Halloween candy, the Thanksgiving pies and then the Christmas cookies to sideline you from your healthy ways. Don’t fall off the wagon during the holidays by following some of these helpful tips:

Don’t be too tough on yourself: When you tell your child not to push the red button, what do they do? They push the red button. The same forbiddance applies to adults as well. You forbid yourself your favorite cheesy potatoes you will be more tempted to gobble them up. Allow yourself your favorite little treats, just keep it small.

Avoid unhealthy snacking: One can easily put on a few pounds during the holidays with all the snacks that are everywhere. Holiday, company and kid parties all serve tasty little snacks that are full of sugar and calories. Skip the unhealthy snacking and wait for the meal. Be aware of how much you snack and try to limit it, remember to only eat when you are hungry!

Host it or make it: If you are worried about eating things that are not on your healthy eating plan, then offer to make the meal or at least bring something healthier. Make a dish that you would happy to load up on if that is the only dish you can really afford calorie wise.

Stick to 6 small meals a day: Stick to your typical healthy eating plan and eat your six small meals a day. This will help you refuse that urge to snack in-between or devour the chocolate cake. Keeping full with nutrients and protein will prevent unnecessary eating.

Keep busy and get active: Holidays are all about being with family and enjoying each other’s company. There are so many different fun activities to partake in throughout the holiday season. Keep busy with these activities and focus on being with each other and not so much making unhealthy choices. Go ice skating, pick pumpkins, play football in the back yard, get active and stay busy!

Don’t look at the holiday season as a health hurdle but instead run at it with knowledge and preparedness by reviewing these helpful tips. Stay physically active and keep busy. Prepare your own healthy meals to bring to parties and avoid the snack tables. And of course allow yourself to enjoy a sweet treat here and there!

About the Author

Ken Myers the editor in chief is a frequent contributor of Go Nannies Ken helps acquire knowledge on the duties & responsibilities of nannies to society. You can reach him at [email protected].

Health Benefits of Staying Hydrated

It’s no secret that water is essential to our body; after all, we are comprised of about 60% water. That is why staying hydrated is something that every person should be aware of. Not drinking enough water could have some serious repercussions on your overall health. Even on the most basic level, our body needs water to function properly. Here are a few other health benefits of staying hydrated.

Helps Fight Illnesses

When you drink a lot of water, it improves your body’s ability to fight off illnesses because water is a part of your immune system and lymph fluid. Water also helps rid the body of certain toxins, making you feel overall healthier.

Improves Regulation of Body Temp

The human body has a very narrow temperature range at which it functions properly. If it gets too high, it could cause serious damage to the brain and other organs. It is even more essential to drink plenty of water if you are doing something in the hot sun or working out heavily, so you don’t get dehydrated. Also, your body helps cool itself down by perspiring, so you need to drink plenty of water to help replenish what your body just lost.

Increases Shock Absorbency

When your body is hydrated, there is a layer of water that surrounds and cushions your spine, joints, eyes, brain, etc. again shock. This extra layer of protection helps to keep those vital parts safe.

Good for the Skin

If you allow yourself to get too dehydrated, your skin will appear dry and be more prone to developing wrinkles. By staying hydrated, the suppleness of your skin will improve and become more elastic. It will also reduce your risk of developing dry skin complications such as dermatitis, cracks and infections.

Prevents Dry Mouth

Dry mouth can lead to bad breath and even cavities. By drinking a lot of water, your throat and lips won’t dry out, which will help prevent bad breath and cavities from taking homage in your mouth.

Promotes Heart Health

If you want to make life easier on you and your body, make sure to up your fluid intake. When you are dehydrated, your blood volume becomes lower. In order to pump the reduced amount of blood throughout the body, your heart must work harder. This makes daily activities like walking up the stairs or walking your dog more difficult. If your dehydration gets to be too much, visit your local health clinic immediately.

About the Author

This article was written by Northeast Georgia Diagnostic clinic, a multi-specialty diagnostic clinic that has been providing care to patients in the area for over 50 years. Located in Gainesville, Georgia, NGDC is less than an hour drive from Atlanta.

*Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net.*

The holidays can be a treacherous time for those of us with rebellious intestines. If you’re hosting a holiday brunch or lunch for a crowd, how about including a festive dish that EVERYONE can enjoy? Here’s a delicious solution to your Holiday brunch dilemmas: gluten-free, lactose-Free Blintzes, from Tamara Duker Freuman, MS, RD, CDN

Recipe adapted from Living Without Magazine

Gluten-Free, Lactose-Free Holiday Brunch Blintzes

Ingredients

For the crepes (yields about 8):

Vegetable oil, for greasing pan
3 extra-large eggs, lightly beaten, room temperature
2 Tbs. unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1 cup gluten-free all- purpose flour blend* of choice, more if needed
½ tsp. xanthan gum** (use only if all-purpose flour blend does not contain xanthan or guar gum)
1½ cups lactose-free milk of choice, room temperature; more if needed

Filling

1 cup Green Valley Organics Lactose-Free Sour Cream
1 cup Lactaid cottage cheese
1 Tbs. sugar (or to taste)
1 tsp. ground cinnamon

*Note: Be sure to use GF All Purpose Flour Blends. DO NOT use GF All Purpose Baking Mixes. The “baking mixes “contain chemical leavening agents like baking soda or baking powder and are NOT suitable for this recipe. Also, read the ingredients of your All Purpose Flour blend. If it contains xanthan gum or guar gum, you can omit the xanthan gum called for in the recipe.

Preparation

1.Lightly grease an 8- to 10-inch nonstick skillet with vegetable oil, like grapeseed or canola oil, and set aside.

2.In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs and butter until well combined. Mix the flour blend with the xanthan gum and blend into the egg mixture. Pour in the milk in a slow, steady stream, whisking constantly until batter is smooth. Add more milk or flour by the tablespoon, if necessary, to ensure a smooth and thin batter.

3.Heat prepared skillet over medium heat. Using a large ladle or spoon, place a generous ¼ cup batter into the center of the hot pan, swirling to coat the bottom of the pan in an even layer, taking care not to spread the batter too thin.

4.Cook the pancake until edges begin to brown slightly, about 2 to 3 minutes, and flip with a wide spatula. The pancake will flip easily when ready. Cook the other side for about another 20 to 30 seconds until the pancake is set. Turn the pancake onto a plate lined with a moist tea towel and cover to keep warm.

5.Repeat with remaining batter, layering pancakes one on top of the other. Cover after each addition. You do not need to re-oil the skillet in between pancakes.

6.In a medium-size bowl, mix filling ingredients until well combined. You will likely have some extra, which you can use as a topping. Alternatively, save it for breakfast tomorrow and use it as a spread for toasted gluten-free Cinnamon Raisin bread.

7.Preheat oven to 400°F.

8.To assemble blintzes, place one pancake flat on a plate. Place 2 Tbs. filling on the flat pancake, about one-third of the way from the edge closest to you. Fold the bottom of the pancake over the filling, turn in the sides toward the middle and roll away from yourself to create a cylinder. Repeat with remaining pancakes. Fear not if the filling seems a bit too liquid; just wrap it carefully and place open seam down on the baking pan. It will all firm up during baking, and will turn out better than you could have imagined.

9.Place rolled blintzes in preheated oven and bake for 10 minutes at 400°F. (Alternatively, you can sauté blintzes in a bit of butter or oil in a pan over medium-high heat until crisp, about 5 minutes, flipping halfway through the process. I baked them.)

10.Let blintzes sit for a few minutes before plating and serving to allow filling to set. Serve warm or at room temperature, plain or garnished with extra filling, lactose-free sour cream, or fruit compote.

Yields about 8 blintzes.

More Festive Filling & Crepe Ideas

Create your own holiday tradition by adding festive flavors to this Holiday Blintz recipe:

• Pump-kin Up The Volume: Add ½ tsp. freshly grated nutmeg to the crepe batter and make the filling with 1 cup Green Valley Organics Sour Cream, 2/3 cup organic pumpkin puree, 3 Tbs. sugar or maple syrup (or 1 stevia packet), 1 tsp. vanilla extract and 1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice for a special family brunch on Thanksgiving Weekend.

• Gingerbread Crepes: Add 3 Tbs. molasses, 3 Tbs. sugar, 1 tsp. cinnamon, ½ tsp. ginger and ¼ tsp. clove to the crepe batter for a gingerbread version.

• Cranberry Orange Crepes: Add one 6-oz cup of Redwood Hill Farm Cranberry Orange Goat Yogurt to blintz filling; top crepes with leftover cranberry sauce or relish with an orange zest garnish.

PER SERVING (1 blintz with filling): 229 CAL; 9G PROT; 14G TOTAL FAT (8G SAT. FAT); 17G CARB; 112MG CHOL; 158MG SOD; 2G FIBER; 3G SUGARS

*Recipe and image courtesy of Green Valley Organics.*

Counteracting the Effects of Holiday Meals and Snacks (If You Must Indulge)

The holidays have begun… Christmas is right around the corner, and hand-in-hand with holiday festivities comes parties and social events, and don’t forget… the food! While many of us may feel conflicted and have the desire to be good boys and girls and not indulge in some of the naughtier foods that are fat-filled and “carbohydracious,” there is also the pull that comes to blend in and behave in a socially acceptable manner by being polite and eating what is offered.

Never fear, there are some things that you can do to help defend your arteries from hardening and your heart from skipping a beat. To the rescue can come nutrients and behaviors that you can apply that act as counteracting mechanisms to protect your poor, afflicted body (one that has just taken on an onslaught of fats and carbs).

Several research projects have been done to discover the effects of certain nutrients and their counteracting effects pre- and post- high calorie, fatty meals. Some of the findings are promising. While the findings are something you can try at home, it isn’t recommended to make it a habit to eat a fatty, high carbohydrate-filled diet on a regular basis, trying to negate their effects by the following methods. The best diet is still a moderate and balanced one, sans high fat, high carbs, and a high calorie intake.

With the above disclaimer, we’re now ready to dive into some of the remedies for a meal or snack that is high in fat content. Did you know that a glass of orange juice can help to counteract the effects of a high fat meal? Normally after eating a meal that is high in fat content, the arteries react by becoming inflamed, and the endothelium (protective layer of your arteries) begins to break down. But orange juice can help to mitigate the oxidative stress and prevent damage to blood vessels caused by the free radicals from a high-fat meal, according to a study done by researchers at the University at Buffalo, N.Y.

Don’t you love the nuts that become plentiful and available at a host’s home near Christmastime? Good on ya, indulge, because according to another study done by the Journal of American College of Cardiology, a handful of walnuts can also help to protect arteries against the shock of a high-saturated-fat meal.

If you’re the type that likes to swallow pills or dietary supplements, you’re in luck, because a University of Maryland cardiologist has found that fruit and vegetables (in capsule form) were able to somewhat blunt the effects of a fatty meal. A previous study done by the same cardiologist, Dr. Gary Plotnick, found that high doses of vitamin C and E taken immediately before eating a high-fat meal seemed to blunt the effects as well. But before you go gorge yourself this holiday season and expect that supplements will totally protect you, take note that his study also pointed out that in general, 3 to 5 hours after a very high-fat meal, the blood vessel’s function becomes abnormal (that’s without any supplementation or other intervention, but it does make you stop and think).

If you know you’re going to be eating some unhealthy foods during the holiday season, remember to drink plenty of water. Doubling up on your water intake with (8) 16 oz. glasses of water will help to get rid of toxins and flush the system. And for one more healthy tip to mitigate some of the effects of high-fat snacks and meals during the holidays – go out and take a 30-45 minute brisk walk, especially after a heavy meal. This also helps to counteract the effect that fatty foods have on your arteries. Happy and healthy holidays!

About the Author

Amber Merton is a health and fitness advocate, and writes for the natural latex mattress manufacturer, Plushbeds.

*Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net.*

Ring in the season with peppermint-topped, chocolate cupcakes. Canola oil makes the cupcakes light and fluffy. These bite-sized, mouth-watering treats will get your guests in the mood to celebrate the holidays in style!

Mini Peppermint Cupcakes

Ingredients

Cupcakes

1½ cups all-purpose flour (“Mom” prefers organic, unbleached flour)
¾ cup granulated sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
½ cup cocoa powder (“Mom” prefers organic)
½ cup canola oil
1 cup skim milk (“Mom” prefers organic)
1 tsp vinegar
1 tsp peppermint extract

Chocolate Glaze

½ cup heavy cream (“Mom” prefers organic)
4 oz bittersweet chocolate, chopped (“Mom” prefers organic)
1 Tbsp honey
½ Tbsp prepared coffee

Garnish

½ cup coarsely crushed red and white striped hard peppermint candies or candy canes

Preparation

1. Preheat oven to 350 °F (180 °C).
2. Line mini cupcake pan with paper cupcake liners.
3. In medium bowl, mix together flour, sugar, baking soda, salt and cocoa powder. In large bowl, mix canola oil, milk and vinegar.
4. Add half of dry ingredients into oil. When well combined, add peppermint extract. Slowly mix in remaining dry ingredients until fully combined and free of lumps.
5. Scoop batter into cupcake liners with small ice cream scoop or spoon. Bake cupcakes for 12 minutes. Cool completely on rack.
6. While cupcakes are cooling, make glaze. In saucepan, mix cream, chocolate, honey and coffee on low heat. Stir until smooth. Let cool.
7. Dip cooled cupcakes in chocolate glaze. Place on rack and sprinkle with crushed peppermint candies. Let glaze harden.

Yield: 36 mini cupcakes.

Tip: To crush the peppermint candies, put them in a zip-top bag and crush with a rolling pin or use a food processor.

*Recipe and image courtesy of CanolaInfo.*