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In a recent animal study, it was found that diets that included canola oil rather than corn oil had less of a chance of growing colon tumors. 

One of the reasons that gives canola the edge is the high amount of omega-3 fatty acids, where corn oil is higher in omega-6 fatty acids.  In the animals tested, researchers charted the size and number of colon tumors and tested their blood for its fatty acid amount.  When comparing animals whose diets contained corn oil verses canola oil, the animals whose diet included canola oil had fewer tumors and much smaller tumors on average.

While researchers will next attempt this same study on humans, researchers and nutritionists alike agree that only good can come from including more omega-3 fatty acids in your diet.

  • 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.

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.

 

For more than 120 years, experts have been researching the benefits of massage therapy, and besides the obvious stress-free feeling that people have following a massage, there are plenty of other benefits to this ancient healing procedure. 

One major benefit of massage therapy that researchers have found is that people who get massages on a regular basis have noticed a decrease in their blood pressure.  

Massages also help to alleviate the pain of those who suffer from migraine headaches. 

Massage can also: reduce your heart rate, increase blood circulation and lymph flow, relax your muscles, improve your range of motion, and increase endorphins. 

Research has also shown that while massage therapy does not increase your muscle strength, it can stimulate your weak and inactive muscles and can thereby aid muscles that you may not have worked out in quite some time. 

Some other physical benefits of massage therapy include relieving muscle tension and stiffness, alleviating discomfort during pregnancy, reducing

muscle spasms, promoting deeper and easier breathing, enhancing the health and nourishment of your skin, and improving your posture. 

Massage therapy, while a physical act, is not all about physical benefits.  There are plenty of mental benefits that having a massage can give you. Some of these mental benefits include promoting mental alertness, relieving mental stress, reducing levels of anxiety, improving motor skills, creating   body awareness, and fostering a feeling of well-being. 

While this article only touches on a few benefits of massage therapy, both physical and mental, there are plenty more out there that researchers are learning about each day.  

So, whatever your reason may be, pamper yourself today and reap all the benefits of a great massage.

It’s getting warmer and it’s almost time for picnics, barbecues, and outdoor parties! But just because you aren’t choosing all of your meals, that doesn’t mean that you have to pack on the pounds this summer. 

Keep these tips in mind at your next picnic:

  • Choose lean ground meat when making burgers. You should also try low-fat hot dogs, sausages and bratwurst and other grilled favorites.
  • Seafood and chicken are great grilled foods and are both still healthy picnic options.
  • Don’t forget your greens and mix in a salad to your picnic or party menu.
  • Remember your veggies as they are also great on the grill and in side dishes, especially summer time veggies like squash and zucchini.
  • Instead of chocolate desserts, think fruity desserts instead, and take advantage of a season when fruits are plenty.
  • The vitamin K in spinach provides 200% of the daily value in fresh spinach and nearly 1000% of the daily value in boiled spinach.
  • Spinach is an excellent source of vitamin C and vitamin A, folate and magnesium.
  • Cooked spinach is a great source of iron and is totally fat free.

 

Recipe: Wilted Spinach Salad

  • 10 to 12 ounces spinach, washed and torn into pieces
  • ¼ cup minced red onion
  • 5 to 6 radishes, thinly sliced
  • 2 hard-cooked eggs, 1 chopped and 1 sliced
  • 2 to 4 slices bacon
  • 1 to 1 ½ tablespoons bacon drippings
  • 1 ½ tablespoons sugar
  • 3 tablespoons vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper 

Place prepared spinach in a large bowl. Add onions and radishes. Refrigerate, tightly covered. Fry or microwave bacon until crisp; remove to paper towel and set aside. In a small jar or measuring cup combine drippings with sugar, vinegar, water, salt and pepper. Refrigerate all ingredients until just before serving. When ready to serve, microwave the dressing on high for 30 to 45 seconds, or until mixture boils. Toss the chopped egg with the greens then pour the hot dressing over greens mixture; toss again lightly. 

Recipe: Spinach Lasagna

  • 2 egg whites
  • 26 oz of prepared spaghetti sauce
  • 24 oz of ricotta cheese
  • 10 oz of Lasagna noodles, cooked
  • 10 oz of frozen spinach, thawed and chopped, then squeezed dry
  • 2 cups of mozzarella cheese, grated, reserve ½ cup
  • ¾ cup of Parmesan cheese, grated and divided, reserve 2 tablespoons
  • ½ teaspoon of salt
  • ½ teaspoon of black pepper
  • Olive oil 

Preheat oven to 350°. Prepare a 9x13 dish. Cook lasagna noodles as directed on the package, then rinse and drain. Combine parmesan cheese, ricotta cheeses with the egg whites, salt and pepper in a large mixing bowl. Pour ¼ cup of spaghetti sauce in the bottom of the baking dish and spread it out using a spatula. Cover the sauce with a single layer of lasagna noodles. Spread about half the cheese mixture over the noodles, and then cover with about half of the spinach and shredded mozzarella cheese. Finish this layer with half of the remaining spaghetti sauce. Add a second layer of noodles, topping with the remaining cheese mixture, spinach, and mozzarella cheese. Top with the final layer of noodles and remaining spaghetti sauce. Sprinkle the reserved Parmesan cheese over the top and bake for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and set for 10-12 minutes.