Matcha: Will It Be The Replacement of Coffee For Americans Soon?

Matcha is a powdered green tea made from crushed leaves. Matcha contains L-theanine, an amino acid that relaxes the mind. It is sold in a Japanese cafe in Brooklyn, New York where several people have reported a relaxed energy and ease on their stomachs compared to coffee. The drinks served at the cafe contain 70 milligrams of caffeine which is almost as much as a cup of coffee. The powder is also available online at www.matchabarnyc.com ($22 for a 30-gram tin which makes 20 cups)

Would you substitute this product for your coffee?

CLASSIC MATCHA TIN 30g

Photo credit: http://www.matchabarnyc.com

For more information: http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2014-10-16/matcha-americas-latest-caffeine-fix

Need Some Flavor In Your Water?

A lot of people I talk to have trouble drinking water without any flavor.. and I don’t blame them! Our taste buds like a little flavor, but there are healthier ways to add this flavor rather than buying flavored waters, drinking sports drinks, relying on soda to fill the need of flavor in our beverages. Here are some tips to adding NATURAL flavors to our water!

You will need…

-1-2 liters’ of water, depending on how strong you want it to taste
-Part of 1 watermelon or 1 cucumber
-1 lemon or lime
-A handful of fresh mint leaves (approximately 10-13)
-Ice cubes

Slice up a good amount of watermelon into cubes, rind and all, and put them into a jug or pitcher. Cut 1 juicy lime into wedges and toss in with the watermelon. Add a handful of fresh, fragrant, mint leaves and pour in 2 liters of cool water, filling the jug all the way to the top. Let this sit overnight in the fridge and let all the yummy flavors steep and infuse the water. When you want to drink it, put in a generous helping of ice cubes, pour, and enjoy daily.

Remember: You can always substitute a fruit or a vegetable depending on your own taste! You don’t have to follow this recipe step by step, this is just to give you an idea of how great you can make your water taste.. and look!

Doesn’t this look refreshing?

detoxdrinks

Don’t Reach For A Sports Drink, You Most Likely Don’t Need It

Most sports drinks are loaded with sugar and are not necessary for consumption before, during, or after exercising, unless you are an athlete who does high-intensity workouts over an hour. Here are a list of beverages to keep in mind to skip the high sugary sports drinks the next time you exercise..

  • Best drink for hydration: Coconut water–  coconut water is low on the glycemic index, so it won’t dramatically affect your blood sugar, this drink may also promote heart health.

Vita Coco 100% Pure Coconut Water (1 bottle, 17 fl oz) 90 calories, 0 g fat, 22 g sugar

  • Best drink for enhanced performance: Coffee– scientific research has linked caffeine consumption with increased endurance and reaction times. The problem is, most caffeine-enhanced energy drinks are loaded with added sugars.

Coffee (8 fl. oz) = 2 calories, 0g fat, 0g sugars [without milk/cream or sugar of course!]

  • EBoost: A great way to get green tea on the go: EBoost. Unlike most green-tea based energy beverages, it’s sweetened with natural, zero-calorie Stevia, and it has an impressive antioxidant profile.

EBoost (1 packet): 5 calories, 0g fat, 0g sugars

  • Chocolate Milk: Drinking a combination of carbohydrates and protein after a hard workout can help restore your energy and aid in building lean, metabolism-boosting muscle

Low Fat Chocolate Milk (8 fl oz): 158 calories, 2.5g fat, 25g sugars, 8g protein

  • WATER!: Nature’s beverage is calorie-free, cost-free, and unless you’re an elite athlete who does high-intensity exercise for more than an hour at a time, it’ll take care of all your workout hydration needs.

Water: 0 calories, 0g fat, 0g sugars

2012-07-16-SportsDrinks

For more information: http://eatthis.menshealth.com/blog/5-sports-drinks-actually-work-0

 

How Much Sugar Are You Consuming?

The average American consumes, 18-23 teaspoons a day, or 2 pounds of sugar a week, about 2.5 times the recommended daily limit. That is equal to 100-156 pounds of sugar in a year! In the last 20 years we have increased sugar consumption in the United States from 26lbs. of sugar to 135lbs. of sugar per person every year. Sugar is the most widespread form of carbohydrate and the most common ingredient in processed foods. Half of our sugar intake come from “invisible” sugars (foods you don’t think would have sugar in them)

Even if you don’t feel like you are consuming a lot of sugar, you are most likely eating more sugar than your body needs. The American Heart Association recommends consuming no more than 6 teaspoons of added sugar a day for women and 9 teaspoons for men.

Added sugar is found in many unexpected food items, including sliced bread, wheat crackers, salad dressing, ketchup and energy bars. Soft drinks are largest source refined sugar in children’s diet. Clinical studies show that sugar-free diets are more difficult to follow in the long-term. Sugar-free eating can trigger cravings for sweet foods and disordered eating. Being able to enjoy occasional sugary foods is important (remember moderation is KEY!)

There are many different names for sugar that are on food labels. The trick is if it ends in “ose” it is sugar. Just to name a few: honey, lactose, glucose, sucrose, maltose, dextrose, fructose, corn sweetener, juice concentrate, natural sweetener, high fructose corn syrup. Remember to always read food labels and choose brands with lower sugar content. Also, keep in mind that artificial sweeteners, like Splenda, are two hundred times sweeter than sugar! It’s not ideal to consume artificial sweeteners if you want to reduce a sweet tooth.

If you are craving a sugary food, try reaching for a food that is naturally sweetened like fresh fruit. But remember,  just because it is a fresh fruit, doesn’t mean you can eat the whole bowl and not expect your blood sugar to rise. A lot of sugar into the bloodstream upsets body’s blood sugar balance, triggers release of insulin which the body uses to keep blood sugar at a safe level. Insulin also promotes the storage of fat (linked to weight gain and cardiovascular disease). High fiber content foods slows down process of digestion which results in slow release of glucose.

Sugar-quantity-in-common-foods

For more information: http://www.northjersey.com/news/196728311_Know_how_much_added_sugar_you_re_consuming__content_is_no_sweet_surprise.html?c=y&page=1

http://www.facethefactsusa.org/facts/the-sweet-life-and-what-it-costs-us/

http://www.dhhs.nh.gov/DPHS/nhp/adults/documents/sugar.pdf

Swampy Bug Juice & JELL-O worms!

Are you looking for some creative Halloween treats for a party or for your children? Check these out…

Swampy Bug Juice

INGREDIENTS
-24 ounces frozen strawberries, thawed
-6 ounces lemonade, frozen concentrate, thawed
-1 quart ginger ale
-1 cup raisins
-1 cup blueberries, fresh, or frozen and thawed
-Gummy worms

DIRECTIONS
1. Place the strawberries in a bowl and mash with a fork.
2. In a large pitcher, mix the strawberry mash, lemonade and ginger ale.
3. Place handfuls of raisins and blueberries (these will be the bugs) into tall glasses.
4. Pour the liquid over the bugs. The bugs will rise to the top of each glass.
5. Drape gummy worms over the rim of your glass (or punch bowl).

Adapted from a recipe at justkidsrecipes.com.

Jell-o Worms

INGREDIENTS
-Flexible plastic straws
-Empty 1-quart milk or orange juice carton to hold straws
-1 package (6 ounces) raspberry or grape-flavored gelatin
-3 envelopes unflavored gelatin
-3 cups boiling water
-3/4 cup whipping cream
-12-15 drops of green food coloring
-waxed paper

DIRECTIONS
1. Combine gelatins in a bowl and add boiling water. Stir until completely dissolved. Chill for 20 minutes, until lukewarm.
2. Pull straws to extend to full length and place in tall container. Wrap straws together with a rubber band.
3. Blend cream and food coloring with the lukewarm gelatin mixture. Pour into container, filling straws.
4. Chill until gelatin is firm, at least 8 hours and up to two days.
5. Pull straws from container. Pull straws apart. Run hot water for about a few seconds over 3 to 4 straws at a time. Starting at the empty ends, push worms from straws with rolling pin, or use your fingers.
6. Lay worms on waxed paper-lined baking sheets. Cover and chill until ready to use, at least 1 hour or up to 2 days. Worms will hold at room temperature for about 2 hours.

— Adapted from a recipe at theidearoom.net

For more ideas.. http://www.desmoinesregister.com/article/20121016/LIFE/121016017/1003/SPORTS/?odyssey=nav%7Chead&nclick_check=1