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Healthy Living

Written by Lisa Jillanza

Got Mosquitoes? Myth vs. Fact!

Mosquitoes

 

It's summertime and that means that the days are getting longer, the sun is shining later and the mosquitoes are biting everyone!

But how much do you know about these little buggers? Here we separate the myths from the facts: 

MYTH: All mosquitoes will bite you.

It is only the female mosquito that bites you because she needs the blood for protein and energy to produce eggs. Male mosquitoes feed on flower nectar. 

MYTH: Mosquitoes are more drawn to people who eat sweets.

Blood is blood. It is more how a person smells than how they taste, that attracts the most mosquitoes. 

FACT: Mosquitoes prefer certain blood types.

Studies show that mosquitoes like to feast on Type O blood, but only the portion of O's who are “secretors” meaning their bodies infuse specific molecules into their saliva, sweat and mucus. 

FACT: Pregnancy increases your chances of being devoured by mosquitoes.

A study in 2000 reported that mosquitoes tend to bite expectant women more than others. Some think it is due to increased blood volume, while others believe it is due to pregnant women producing more heat and carbon dioxide, both which are bait for mosquitoes. 

MYTH: Citronella and bug zappers are the best protectors against mosquitoes.

Actually your best defense is the 3 D's : drain any standing water, dress in bright colors, and defend using Deet.

In the News

Written by Lisa Jillanza

Fewer Adults Meeting Daily Food Guidelines

In the News

According to a recent study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), “less than 15 percent of adults eat enough fruits daily to meet federal recommendations, but the numbers are even worse in some states, dipping as low as 7.5 percent in Tennessee.”

Researchers also found that even fewer adults eat enough vegetables to meet daily recommendations.

The studies show that while the number of fruit and vegetable intake is low across the entire United States, the numbers are staggering in the Southern states.

Overall, the participants in the study consumed fruit less than once a day, and vegetables less than 1.7 times a day.

According to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, the model that the study was measured against, recommend that adults who get less than 30 minutes of moderate to vigorous activity each day should eat 1.5 to 2 cups of fruit and 2 to 3 cups of vegetables daily.  More active people can eat more fruits and vegetables during their day without adding too many additional calories to their diet.

The guidelines also recommend that we increase our intake of dark green and orange vegetables, as well as beans.

Fruits and Vegetables that are in season year round:

Apples

Bananas

Lettuce

Coconut

Mushrooms

Onions

Snow Peas

Potatoes

Avocados

Celery

Carrots

Bell Peppers

Bok Choy

Cherry Tomatoes

 

Monitoring Your Child's Diet

Written by Lisa Jillanza

Childhood obesity is constantly on the rise, so as parents we need to be sure that we are always monitoring our children's fat intake.  In order to help your child maintain a healthy lifestyle, be sure to establish good eating habits like the following:

Monitoring your Childs Diet

  • Children with a family history of cholesterol and heart disease should drink 2 percent milk.
  • After their 2nd birthday, all kids should drink 1 percent milk.
  • Serve your child lean meats and fish.
  • Limit your child's cheese intake.
  • Limit fruit juice intake to 4 to 6 ounces per day.
  • Offer low-fat snacks like yogurt, pretzels or fresh fruit.
  • Prepare foods using low-fat methods like broiling, steaming or roasting.

 Get Rid Of Your Belly!

Have you been battling the belly bulge for way too long and are ready to finally fight it off?  Well then you need to start by ditching these food and lifestyle choices and say goodbye to your belly once and for all!

  • Eating out too often.  If you are eating out too often then you are definitely eating too many food items that are battered, breaded, fried and generally unhealthy for you.  You are also more than likely using far too much of condiments than you would if you were eating at home.
  • Drinking diet drinks.  It may be calorie-free, but studies show that people who drink diet sodas intake more calories in a day than those who don't indulge in diet drinks.
  • Stress eating sugar.  Stress increases cortisol levels in the body, causing sugary and fatty cravings.
  • Smoking.  Smokers have a larger waist circumference than non-smokers. Plus smoking is all-around bad for you!

Healthy Living - Manic Monday?

Written by Lisa Jillanza

What Successful People Do on Mondays

Manic Monday

You have seen all of the memes on social media that wage war on a “case of the Mondays” and declare that it is the worst day of the week. But, did you know that Monday is actually the most critical day of the entire work week?

Experts say that because you took a two-day break from the trials and tribulations of your work week, Monday is your chance to make the entire week a memorable one.

Not everyone hates Mondays, though. Many of the world's most influential and successful people welcome Monday's with open arms and look forward to starting their week anew.

If you are looking to make your work week a more profitable one, starting with Monday, then follow what many successful leaders do:

  • Wake up early.
  • Exercise
  • Eat a healthy breakfast.
  • Arrive at work early.
  • Clear your desk and desktop.
  • Carve out time for unexpected projects and tasks.
  • Greet your team and boss.
  • Update your to-do list and weekly goals.
  • Visualize the success of the week.
  • Screen emails for urgent requests.
  • Tackle the tough challenges first.
  • Make an extra effort to smile.
  • Add a “blanket of humanity” to your emails. (Reread them for friendliness and clarity before you send them.)
  • Be able and learn to say “No”.
  • Stay focused.
  • Remember that there is “Tuesday”.

Perfectly Plum

Written by Lisa Jillanza

Plums are the delicious fruit that come from the same fruit family as cherries and peaches.  But plums are about more than just great taste, they are chock full of nutritional value.

Plums, and their dried version known as prunes, are very high in phytonutrients, which function as an antioxidant and provide much benefit to the body.

Eating plums helps in the production and absorption of iron in the body, thereby leading to better blood circulation leading further to the growth of healthy tissues.

Consuming plums on a regular basis will help prevent macular degeneration and other eye infections. Researchers have also found that plums contain anti-cancer agents that prevent the growth of cancerous cells and tumors.

Because plums contain blood cleansing agents that help keep the blood pure, plums can help you reduce the risk of contracting heart disease.

Plums are also high in vitamin C, meaning they help to protect the body against conditions like asthma, colon cancer, rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis.

Recipe: Chicken Breasts with Plum Salsa and Basmati Rice

1 ½ cups of water

1 cup uncooked basmati rice, rinsed and drained

¾ pound plums, pitted and chopped

½ medium red onion, minced

3 habanero peppers, seeded and minced

3 tablespoons fresh minced cilantro

1 teaspoon sugar

¾ pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts

2 teaspoons fresh rosemary, minced

Salt and pepper to taste

2 teaspoons vegetable oil

Place water in medium saucepan and stir in rice. Bring to boil.  Cover, reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Remove from heat, cool and fluff with fork.  In a bowl, mix the plums, peppers, onions, cilantro and sugar. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.  Season chicken with rosemary, salt and pepper.  Heat vegetable oil in skillet over medium-heat. Place chicken in oil and brown 1 minute per side.  Reduce heat to medium, and cook for 5 additional minutes per side.  Serve over rice with plum salsa.

Recipe: Fresh Summer Fruit Salad

½ cup water

2/3 cup sugar

3 cups thinly sliced rhubarb

15 seedless grapes, halved

½ orange, sectioned

10 fresh strawberries, hulled and halved

1 apple, cored and diced

1 peach, sliced

1 plum, pitted and sliced

15 pitted Bing cherries

¼ cup fresh blueberries

Bring water and sugar to boil in a medium saucepan over medium heat.  Stir in the rhubarb, turn heat to low, cover and simmer until rhubarb is soft, 10 to 15 minutes.  Mash and chill in the refrigerator about one hour.   To serve, mix the grapes, orange, strawberries, apple, peach, plum, cherries, and blueberries with 2/3 cup of the rhubarb sauce.  Stir gently, but thoroughly to coat.  Refrigerate for at least two hours for all of the flavors to blend well.