BabyGanics Diapers 1
New for little green babies – BabyGanics’ Rear Gear Ultra Absorbent Diapers! “Mom” has two little ones in diapers, and is constantly in the lookout for eco-friendly, disposable options that do not leak and are comfortable on the sensitive skin of both her little ones. Were we in for a surprise when a large package of the new BabyGanics’ Rear Gear Ultra Absorbent Diapers showed up! This new offering has “Mom” cheering – the diapers are environmentally-friendly, provide excellent protection from leaks, are comfortable on baby’s skin, and are affordable – it doesn’t get any better than that! We love that they are chlorine-free, too!

BabyGanics Diapers 2

BabyGanics’ Rear Gear Ultra Absorbent Diapers are made with an exclusive blend of superior seed oils known as the NeoNourish ComplexTM, to nourish and moisturize babies’ skin. In addition, the diapers are made from bio-based materials, and contain no harsh chemicals, chlorine, latex, petroleum-based lotions or fragrance!

Mom” tried both size 3 and size 5 diapers on her little ones, and both provided awesome protection and held up to lots of running, playing, and squirming to get the diapers on the children! They are not scratchy on sensitive skin, and are very absorbent.

Rear Gear Ultra Absorbent Diapers are available exclusively at all Babies R Us locations, with prices starting at $11.99.

*Company generously provided samples and images for this piece.*

2022582_CSVeggie_Sport_Protein_VNL_85Tub_stg2Mom” starts every morning with a protein smoothie complete with chia seeds, rice or soy protein, strawberries, 1 banana and all-natural peanut butter. So when she learned of the new CleanSeries™ line from Twinlab, she was excited to test it out! This new high performance line is Non-GMO and banned substance tested, certified gluten-free, and formulated without artificial colors, flavors or sweeteners.

The CleanSeries line features five products, two of which have “Mom” raving – the Veggie Protein and Soy Protein Isolate. Although “Mom” is not a vegetarian, but traditional whey protein powders cause her belly to bloat and feel uncomfortable, so she sticks to vegetarian-based powders for her smoothies. She also loves the fact that the Soy Protein Isolate contains no sugar!

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The five new products in the CleanSeries™ line include:

CleanSeries™ Sport Protein
· 23g of high quality protein per serving to support lean muscle growth*
· Promotes muscle repair and helps aid recovery*
· Enzyme-assisted formula to aid digestion

CleanSeries™ Whey Protein Isolate
· 23g protein per serving from premium cross flow ultra filtered Whey Protein Isolate
· Promotes muscle repair and helps reduce recovery time*
· No fat and only 2g sugar

CleanSeries™ Soy Protein Isolate
· 30 grams of superior quality protein per serving
· 100% soy protein isolate, a complete vegetable protein source
· Zero cholesterol and sugar free

CleanSeries™ Pre-workout Activator
· Total energy activator features clinically-studied herbal complex plus caffeine to deliver energy you can feel*
· Concentrated formula helps fight fatigue and boost endurance*
· Timed-release carb blend fuels intense, extended exercise*

CleanSeries™ Veggie Protein
· 21g vegetarian protein per serving to promote muscle repair and recovery*
· Enzyme-assisted formula to help aid digestion
· No cholesterol and no lactose

You can learn more about the new CleanSeries™ line on http://cleanseries.twinlab.com/.

*Company generously provided samples and images for this piece.*

ID-100149759Easy Meal Makeovers With Mango

Need a secret weapon against food boredom? Looking for a simple, foolproof ingredient to add an element of surprise to your next meal? Look to mangoes to makeover dishes with naturally sweet, tropical flavor.

Mango’s versatile taste enhances any meal, like on-the-go breakfasts, brown-bag lunches, after-school snacks and family dinners. They pair well with other flavors, transforming meals and snacks with fresh flavor that brightens your plate and your taste buds.

If you are trying to maintain a fresh and fit lifestyle, mangos deliver a host of nutrients to make healthy eating more delicious. They are high in fiber, cholesterol-free, fat-free, and a good source of dietary fiber. A one-cup serving of mangos is just 100 calories and provides 100 percent of your daily vitamin C. That’s not all: Mangos live up to their superfruit status with more than 20 vitamins and minerals.

A few simple tips when selecting a mango will make this healthy fruit a weekly staple on your grocery list. To find a ripe mango, just squeeze gently. Color isn’t always the best indicator of ripeness. A ripe mango will be slightly soft like a peach or avocado. Keep unripe mangos at room temperature and store ripe mangos in the refrigerator. To speed up the ripening process, place unripe mangos in a paper bag. Whole ripe mangos may be stored for up to five days in the refrigerator, or can be sliced, cubed and placed in an airtight container in the freezer for up to six months.

Once you have a ripe mango, wash the fruit and use a clean knife and cutting board for slicing. Simply slice off the sides of the fruit about a quarter of an inch off center, avoiding the large seed in the center. Once you have these two sides, or mango cheeks, you can get to the flesh by slicing through the flesh but not through the skin and scooping it out with a spoon.

Once cut, mangos don’t lose their color, and the texture holds up extremely well, making them a great prep-ahead fruit. Keep slices on hand to upgrade everyday staples like mango on cereal or oatmeal, quesadillas with mango, mango and ice cream, or yogurt topped with mango.

Since mangos are available year-round, they are a perfect addition to everyday favorites, family staples and tried-and-true recipes. The fresh taste of mango is a fun departure from tropical fruits such as banana or pineapple. Kick up the flavor in everyday meals like toast topped with almost butter and mango or gooey-sweet Mango Upside-Down Cake. Adding mango is also a great way to upgrade in-season produce year-round, from mango-strawberry shortcake and mango and peach crisp to mango-cranberry sauce and mango and yams with toasted marshmallows.

Mango’s flavor is bright and sweet with a little tang, so try it in dishes where you might use a tomato, like mango salsa, Caprese salad with mango, fresh mozzarella and basil or a mixed green salad. Also, don’t be afraid to try mango on the grill, baked in sweets or sprinkled with sugar and put under the broiler.

For a simple lunchtime makeover, add fresh mango slices to a classic sandwich like Grilled Ham and Cheese with Mango. Tropical mango makes a sweet addition to this traditional dish with an unexpected pop of flavor and color.

What do you call it when mangos create a tropical transformation? A Mangover, of course.

Grilled Ham and Cheese with Mango

Ingredients

2 Tbsp. softened butter (“Mom” prefers organic)

2 slices whole wheat bread

2 slices Monterey Jack cheese (“Mom” prefers Applegate Farms)

4 slices deli ham (“Mom” prefers Applegate Farms)

1 mango (about 1 pound), peeled, pitted and sliced

Preparation

Spread 1 tablespoon butter on one side of each piece of bread. On first slice of bread, place 1 slice cheese, ham and mango on unbuttered side of bread. Top with remaining slice of cheese and second piece of bread, buttered side up. Heat small, nonstick skillet over medium-low heat. Place sandwich in skillet and cook until golden brown and cheese is melted, 3 to 4 minutes per side.

Makes 1 sandwich.

For more mango recipe ideas, cutting technique details, and additional information about mangos, visit the National Mango Board at www.mango.org.

*Article courtesy of NAPS. Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.*

Fairy Tales Hair Care GroupThe kids are back in school…time to start weekly head checks for lice! A recent survey by Fairy Tales Hair Care found that while 93% of parents teach their children the basic prevention tips such as not sharing hats, helmets, brushes and combs, only 56% of parents do a weekly head check. With 12-15 million cases of head lice reported each year in the U.S., these head checks are important!

Fairy Tales Hair Care Nit Picking Comb

Studies have shown that a proactive check for lice and their eggs in “hot spots” can help to minimize a lice outbreak. Lice lay eggs (nits) in warm, moist areas around the head. These include behind ears, nape of the neck and at the part lines. By checking these areas with a metal comb designed to remove nits, parents can stay ahead of an outbreak. Lice expert and founder of Fairy Tales Hair Care Risa Barash, recommends the Fairy Tales Terminator Comb as the stainless steel, micro-grooved teeth are gentle on the scalp and catch the smallest of nits.

To assist parents, Fairy Tales Hair Care, makers of the bestselling Rosemary Repel lice prevention products, shared the following easy tips to prevent the spread of lice. While we don’t really like to think about lice on our little ones’ heads, prevention is the best treatment for this all too common issue. A video tutorial and additional tips on lice prevention and removal using chemical free products such as Rosemary Repel and Lice Good-Bye can be found on www.fairytaleshaircare.com.

Lice Prevention Tips

  • Avoid sharing personal items such as hats, combs and brushes, hair accessories, towels, pillows, and ear buds. If you must share an item, such as an athletic helmet, wipe it down with a wet cloth before use
  • Herbs such as rosemary, citronella and tea tree have been proven to repel head lice; the smell keeps them away
  • Keep long hair pulled up in a braid or pony tail
  • Avoid daily hair washing when possible. Lice attach more easily to clean hair
  • Use hair care products that repel lice naturally with ingredients such as rosemary oil, citronella oil and tea tree oil
  • Store each person’s personal items such as jackets, backpacks, hats and scarves in separate cubbies or a sealed bag

For more information on lice treatment and prevention, please visit www.FairyTalesHairCare.com.

Smooch - GroupSend a Smooch in their lunchbox! For children (and adults, too!) Smooch is a 100% natural fruit snack that’s made with a blend of three fruit purees (not from concentrate), containing 5% chia seeds and 1% acerola cherry puree to keep little ones energized. Smooch is low in calories, gluten, dairy and nut free and is vegan and vegetarian-friendly. Smooch comes in a single serve pouch, perfect for packing in lunchboxes, backpacks and sports bags!

Smooch At Lunch

While the creators of Smooch wanted to offer adults the same fun and healthy snack option that kids are enjoying, “Mom” found these to be quite a hit with her little ones! Plus, “Mom” loves that each Smooch has two secret (or maybe not so secret!) superfoods that pack an incredible nutritional punch – chia seeds and acerola cherry.

Smooch - Apple Raspberry Peach

Smooches are currently offered in three delightful flavors, including Smooch Apple, Raspberry, Peach, Chia Seeds and Acerola Cherry, Smooch Mango, Pineapple Banana, Chia Seeds and Acerola Cherry, and Smooch Strawberry, Blueberry, Banana, Chia Seeds and Acerola Cherry. We are loving them ALL!

For more information or to order online, you can visit Smooch Snacks. We are hoping they come out with new flavors soon!

*Company generously provided samples and images for this piece.

Tofu Macaroni and CheeseIt’s the start of a new school year for many today, and coming home to enjoy a healthier take on a favorite dish will be welcomed by kids and parents alike! House Foods Tofu has taken the classic macaroni and cheese recipe and made it lighter and packed with more nutritional benefits than a standard boxed variety. Yum!

Tofu Mac’n’Cheese

Ingredients

½ package of House Foods Premium Tofu Firm or Organic Firm, strained
1 box elbow macaroni
3 tablespoons of onions
½ cup Greek yogurt (“Mom” prefers organic)
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon mustard
1 teaspoon butter (“Mom” prefers Earth Balance Buttery Spread)
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
dash paprika
pepper to taste

Preparation

Cook and strain macaroni noodles and set aside.
Sautée onions in pan until golden brown.
Combine all ingredients in blender and puree until smooth.
Mix cheese sauce and macaroni noodles in a large pot over low heat until all noodles are coated with sauce and heated thoroughly. Serve warm.

Optional: Serve with parmesan cheese for extra flavor.

Serves 8.

*Recipe and image courtesy of House Foods Tofu.*

Bai5 Molokai CoconutIf you are a fan of the 5 calorie superfruit beverages called Bai5 – you are in for a treat with their newest flavor to tantalize your taste buds – Molokai Coconut! The ninth flavor to make its debut – Molokai Coconut joined Congo Pear, Sumatra Dragonfruit, Brasilia Blueberry, Costa Rica Clementine, Limu Lemon, Malawi Mango, Panana Peach and Ipanema Dragonfruit. Yes – they are as delicious and exotic as they sound! “Mom” cannot decide which one is her favorite, as the Panama Peach and Costa Rica Clementine are tied in first place at the moment!

Bai5 Group

The 5 calorie, 100% Natural beverage contains only 1 gram of sugar and is perfect for anytime of the year, especially on a hot day. Drinking Bai5 is a great way to rehydrate while replenishing your electrolytes after a workout and is a great alternative to soda or sugary sports drinks. Most importantly, Bai5 contains the lesser know superfruit, the coffee fruit, which is loaded with antioxidants.

Bai5 can be enjoyed over ice as a refreshing beverage, or the flavors make great mixers for your favorite organic tropical drinks, too! We thought the recipe below sounded pretty tasty, and would be just as good without the rum, too!

Piṅa Bailada

Ingredients

2 ounces of Bai 5 Molokai Coconut
1 slice of fresh pineapple for garnish
2 ounces of organic rum
½ cup of crushed ice
2 ounces of fresh pineapple juice
1 tall, chilled glass

Preparation

Combine all ingredients in tall, chilled glass and enjoy!

For more exciting beverage combinations using Bai5, or to locate a store near you, visit drinkbai.com.

*Company generously provided samples and images for this piece.*
http://drinkbai.com/whats-inside/meet-our-superfruit

Watermelon CakeIt looks like a cake – but with considerably less calories! This no-bake watermelon cake is simple and fun to make – get the kids involved, too! We especially like the addition of the homemade Vegan cool whip as frosting!

Healthy, No-Bake Watermelon Flag Cake

Ingredients

1/4 of a seedless watermelon

1/2 cup blueberries
Watermelon Cake Lining:

1 cup strawberries; halved

4 oz homemade Vegan cool whip

8 x 8 inch pan

Preparation

Slice watermelon into pieces.

Remove slices from rind and place evenly into your pan.

Spread homemade Vegan cool whip on top of watermelon.

Place blueberries in top left hand corner and place strawberries, cut side down, onto the cool whip to represent the stripes.

*Recipe and image courtesy of CoconutOilCooking.com.*

Girl holding bananaHead Back-to-School with a Healthier Lunch!

It’s difficult to believe that it’s almost time to send our little ones back to school. This year, fix healthier lunches by stocking up on foods that you and your child will love. Try new packaged snacks like Smash Smoothies from Sprout Organic Foods as a nutritious and delicious option for lunch or after-school. Cute superhero packaging is fun for kids while parents can rest assured that their children are getting proper nutrition from the wholesome organic ingredients like veggies, fruits, coconut milk, quinoa and Greek yogurt. They come in a handy squeeze pouch with a resealable top too.

Here are some other suggestions when packing lunches this year:

1. Make a low shelf or a basket that has all healthy options and let you child pack their own lunch. By allowing them to make decisions, toddlers and children feel like they are in control of their eating and won’t feel forced to eat what they don’t like.
2. Plan ahead by having your child try all of the foods before putting them in their lunch bag. There’s nothing worse than having a full lunchbox go to school and a full, uneaten lunchbox come home. If your child tries everything ahead of time, they’ll be likely to eat their meal.
3. Eat the rainbow by providing a wide variety of colorful foods. Chances are if the lunch bag has all white and neutral foods, there are too many carbohydrates and not enough balance.
4. Make clear definitions about dessert. Perhaps specify one or two days a week for a sweet treat to keep them special.
5. Write a short note to your child reminding them that they are so special and loved.

About Sprout Foods

Sprout Baby Food’s mission is simple: provide children, and the parents who feed them, with fresh and delicious whole foods that encourage happy and healthy eating. Founded in 2009, the entire product line is organic and features dishes and recipes created by renowned chef Tyler Florence, a 15-year Food Network veteran, author and father of three and one of Sprout Food’s founders. Using unique cooking methods and seasoning the recipes with gentle, beneficial herbs and spices, Sprout Foods has created tasty, unique, nutritious combinations that children – and their parents – love.

For more information, and to see the complete Sprout Food product line, please visit: http://www.sproutorganicfoods.com.

*Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.*

Tofu and Walnut Lettuce CupsHere’s an Asian-style appetizer using organic tofu from House Foods that is perfect for late summer entertaining!

Tofu and Walnut Lettuce Cups

Ingredients

½ package (7 oz) House Foods Organic Tofu Firm, drained well
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 clove of garlic, minced

Sauce:
1 ½ tablespoon Miso (red or awase)
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 ½ tablespoon hoisin sauce
1 teaspoon Sake
1 teaspoon sugar
½ cup chopped walnuts
½ teaspoon corn starch mixed with ¼ cup cold water

To Serve:
Lettuce, shredded carrots, chopped cilantro

Preparation

In frying pan, heat olive oil, garlic, and Tofu over moderately high heat, breaking up the Tofu into small pieces with a wooden spoon (can also be cubed beforehand according to preference). Cook until Tofu and garlic gets well toasted.

Add all the sauce ingredients and continue cooking for a few minutes, stirring constantly.

Add the water and cornstarch mixture in, stirring until mixture thickens. Mix walnuts in.

Serve them on lettuce cups, topped with shredded carrots and chopped cilantro.

*Recipe and image courtesy of House Foods America.*