MWLC Omega-3 Benefits

18 Feb

Did you know that in the United States, men consume only 50 percent of their daily intake (RDI) of omega-3s, while women consume just 40 percent of their RDI? Why are MWLC Omega-3s beneficial?

Heart Health
Evidence suggests that EPA and DHA help reduce risk factors for heart disease, including high cholesterol and high blood pressure, and lower stroke and heart attack risk.

Brain Health
A reduced intake of omega-3 fats is associated with an increased risk of age-related cognitive decline and dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease.

Vision Health
Large studies find that people who have more omega-3 fats in their diet are less likely to have macular degeneration, an age-related condition that can progress to blindness.

Joint Health
Omega-3s support joint health by decreasing inflammation. Studies find omega-3s to be helpful for reducing the joint pain associated with rheumatoid arthritis.

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Vitamin D: 3 Foods to Add to Your Diet

12 Feb

Hibernating in the winter is normal but the lack of sunlight exposure can mean our bodies make less vitamin D, an important nutrient essential for bone health, reducing inflammation, boosting neuromuscular function and regulating immunity. Instead of reaching for a vitamin D supplement, you can add these three vitamin D rich foods to your diet.

Image result for vitamin d foods

SOCKEYE SALMON:
Salmon is a rich source of heart-healthy omega-3 fats, protein, B-vitamins, phosphorus and selenium, which support everything from brain health to immunity. Salmon is one of the best food sources of vitamin D with 447 IUs (75% DV) per 3 ounce serving. Whip up some tasty salmon patties or bake pre-portioned filets in parchment or foil packets in the oven.

TUNA:
Canned tuna in water provides 154 IUs of vitamin D (26% DV) per 3 ounce serving and is a more affordable panty staple than its Salmon cousin. Like salmon, tuna is a source of protein, omega-3 fats, B-vitamins, phosphorous and selenium. Tuna salad is great on its own or as a filling protein topper on a fresh salad.

EGGS:
Did you know that two eggs provide 82 IUs (11% DV) of vitamin D as well as B-vitamins, phosphorous, selenium choline and a bit of iron? Scrambled or hard boiled, you can’t go wrong.

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What Makes Someone Successful?

4 Feb

Carol S. Dweck, PhD, published 30 years of her research in 2006 answering the question: What makes someone successful? Her theory? People contain two mindsets: the fixed mindset and the growth mindset. Choosing one over the other alters the success you find in life.

5 ACTION AREAS OF THE MINDSETS

To explain further, Dweck identified five action areas in which the two mindsets diverge: challenges, criticism, success, effort and obstacles.

Here are examples of each mindset. Think of what sounds most like you. Are you someone who thinks with a fixed or growth mindset? If you are in a fixed mindset, it is time to start switching your thought process.

CHALLENGES
Fixed mindset – avoids failure: “I will not sign up for a full marathon because I don’t think I can do anything longer than a half-marathon.”
Growth mindset – sees failure as opportunity: “I did not finish the full marathon and had to stop. But I’ll try again because I love the idea of challenging my body and pushing it to its limits.”

CRITICISM      
Fixed mindset – rejects feedback: “My coach is wrong. I know what is best for me.”
Growth mindset – learns from feedback: “I will ask my coach questions during and after our training sessions and take notes to remember what I am told.”

SUCCESS OF OTHERS   
Fixed mindset – gets insecure: “I am jealous of my friend who qualified for the Boston Marathon.”
Growth mindset – gets motivated: “I need to spend time doing speed work to qualify for Boston like my friend did. To do this, I will hire coach who can help me get faster and stronger.”

EFFORT 
Fixed mindset – thinks trying means you are no good: “I am already a good cyclist. I don’t need anyone to help me get better.”
Growth mindset – puts in the work: “I’m up at 6 a.m. to train. I can always get a little stronger.”

OBSTACLES    
Fixed mindset – gives up: “I could never run a marathon. I am not a runner.”
Growth mindset – tries: “I think I could run a marathon. Today I will look up running groups in my area and join them for their next session.”

CONCLUSION

Fully switching from a fixed mindset to a growth mindset can take years, if not a lifetime. But you should practice training yourself to have a growth mindset every day, like you practice your sport every day — it will be worth it. You will view endurance sports not as something so data and results driven but instead as something in which you enjoy the journey.

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The Gift of Giving: DIY Salt-Free Spice Blends

20 Dec

Spice mixes are a great way to give the gift of better taste to your favorite people. Not to mention that — like superfoods — many herbs have nutritional powers that warm, calm, cool, excite and balance our bodies. You don’t need fancy or expensive spice mixes to reap the benefits of these amazing foods (and their flavors) because homemade spice mixes are easy to make and can take on any personality or flavor you like. Best of all? They are sodium-free!

Image result for spice blend homemade mason jar

Stock your pantry with whole spices where available (i.e., cloves, star anise, peppercorns, coriander seed, etc.), then grind them as you need. Pre-ground or powdered spices lose their essence more quickly, which means less flavor in your spice mix. While these are easiest to find at a store specializing in spices, a well-stocked grocery store may also have a nice selection. However, some spices — ginger, onion powder, turmeric and cocoa powder — are easiest to use and work with in powdered form.

Use a Vitamix, a dedicated coffee grinder, or a mortar and pestle to grind your whole spices. To make the mixes below, simply combine the whole spices and pulverize them, then mix with the powdered spices in the recipe. Each formula yields about 1/4 cup of spice mix, so you can scale up or down depending on your needs. Present them in a mason jar with a cute label and voila!

The six salt-free spices below are templates for each of the six flavors we taste. Pack them into small jars and give them to someone who embodies each of the flavors — or who you know will appreciate a little extra sprinkle of sweet, salty, bitter, bright and tartness all year long.

Sultry & Sweet: Sprinkle into hot chocolate or squash soup.

4 teaspoons cinnamon powder
4 whole cloves
1/2 teaspoon cardamom seeds
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
Two big pinches of saffron

Spiced & Savory: Pairs particularly well with poultry, vegetables, eggs and more.

6 teaspoons garlic powder
6 teaspoons onion powder
2 teaspoons celery seeds or leaves

Spicy & Sour: Delicious sprinkled over quinoa, couscous or roasted vegetables.

6 teaspoons sesame seeds, toasted
4 teaspoons pink peppercorn
4 teaspoons sumac
2 teaspoons fennel seeds
2 teaspoons black pepper

Bright & Powerful: Pairs well with soups or pork.

3 teaspoons cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons ginger powder
2 teaspoons white peppercorn
2 teaspoons anise seeds

Bitter Sweet: Fantastic on top of coffee or roasted squash.

4 teaspoons cocoa powder
4 teaspoons ginger
2 teaspoons turmeric
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Tangy & Tart: Sprinkle over chicken soup or roasted vegetables; use to flavor meats or in dressings.

4 teaspoons coriander seeds
4 teaspoons onion powder
4 teaspoons dill seeds
1/2 teaspoon cumin powder

Once you get the hang of grinding and combining these salt-free spice blends, you can start to play with different combinations and personalize them. As they are, these sodium-free mixes are perfect for sprinkling on vegetables, meat dishes, adding to salads or starches, over soup or really anywhere you want to add a little salt-free kick.

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Eat the Rainbow

20 Dec

Image result for rainbow fruits and vegetables

While we all know it is important to eat your veggies, did you know there are many positives from eating a rainbow of different colored fruit and vegetables? 🍉🍊🍋🥬🍆

“When you eat a colorful variety of fruit and vegetables, you get a range of phytonutrients, such as antioxidants and flavonoids from the different colors,” says Margaret Hays, dietitian at The Nutrition Specialists in Innaloo.

Charlene Grosse, advanced accredited practicing dietitian and spokeswoman for the Dietitians Association of Australia, says while there is an overlap of some of the nutrients of fruit and vegetables, the different colors tend to depict different antioxidants or compounds the foods may contain.

“An example of this is ‘red’ foods like tomatoes and watermelon, contain lycopene,” she says.

“This is suggested to be helpful in boosting heart health and lowering risk of cancer occurrence, such as prostate cancer.”

Hays says by eating a rainbow of vegetables and fruits, you’re creating variety and interest — so you’re more likely to stick with the healthy eating plan.

“You are casting your (nutritional) net wider,” says Hays.

“If you eat half a cup of broccoli you might find it boring but if you eat a range of colored vegetables, such as a colorful salad, then you get a range of different flavors and textures, and it is more appealing.”

Red 🍎🍉🍓🍒🍅🌶
Grosse says red fruit and vegetables not only contain lycopene, but also have vitamin A, vitamin C and are low in energy and high in fiber.

“It’s important to note that cooking foods can in some ways make it even healthier, and taste even better,” she says.

“When vegetables are heated, their nutrients are more easily accessible and digestible. For example, we know heating and cooking tomatoes actually boosts the absorption of lycopene, an antioxidant that gives them their bright red color.

“There’s also evidence that cooking or roasting veggies in in the oven can boost the absorption of nutrients. So, for many foods, cooking can boost nutrients, and improve taste and texture, which could encourage people to end up eating more healthy foods.”

Green 🍏🍐🥝🥦🥬🥒
You’ve been told to eat your greens for good reason, says Grosse.

“Green veggies are an excellent source of folate, which is important during pregnancy, as well as vitamin C, iron and phytonutrients, helping to boost your immune system,” she says.

“The phytonutrients could also provide some benefits in lowering risk of eye disease, cancer development and help promote healthy blood vessels.”

Orange 🍊🍑🥕🍠
“Orange fruit and vegetables help to pack a nutrition punch, due to their high content of beta carotene, which can be converted by the body into vitamin A,” Grosse says.

“This vitamin is beneficial for helping with vision, immune function and reproduction. So it definitely provides an all-round boost for health.”

Purple 🍇🍆
Grosse says purple foods contain anthocyanins, which are powerful antioxidants.

“These have the potential to help to protect cells from damage, and may reduce the occurrence of heart issues and cancer,” she says. “Purple vegetables, such as beets, radishes, and carrots, also contain nitrates, and this has been suggested to help reduce blood pressure and may assist in boosting physical performance.”

Get more in your diet
Hays offers 5 tips to boost the amount of rainbow fruit and vegetables in your diet:

1. Don’t leave your vegetables to one meal
2. Make veggies your go-to snack; they are easy to munch on and will fill you up
3. Always include vegetables in your lunch and dinner and at these meals, make sure half of your plate is made up of colorful vegetables
4. Add a vegetable or two to your breakfast; think tasty omelets with hearty mushrooms and spinach or breakfast wraps with added goodies such as colorful peppers and tomatoes
5. Yummy soups are an easy way to get lots of vegetables into a meal or eat delicious salads as the weather warms up

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