Staying Healthy as the Weather Turns Cold

If you are one of the many people who dread the weather turning colder because you always seem to catch a cold or the flu, fear not!  You can still enjoy everything the winter season has to offer, while staying healthy.

The first thing you need to do to stay healthy this winter may sound overly simple, but it really does work:  wash your hands!  Be sure to wash your hands frequently, for at least twenty seconds at a time, with warm soapy water.  This is especially important to do before eating.

Next, you should be sure to stay well hydrated.  This means drinking eight, eight ounce glasses of fluid per day.  Water is a great option, as is tea, milk, and one hundred percent fruit juice.

Then, make sure you eat a healthy well balanced diet.  This should include eating plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, lean protein, low fat dairy products, and whole grains.  You may also want to incorporate foods that help to keep your immune system strong such as ginger, garlic, and warm and cozy soups.

Finally, make sure you are well rested.  In order to fight of illnesses, your body will need to be strong and well rested.  This means getting plenty of sleep at night, and making time for regular bouts of daily exercise.  When your body is in top condition, so is your immune system, which will do wonders to keep you strong, fit, and healthy all year long.

The Best Lunches to Make For Your Kids

More than ever before, children need to be careful about what they put into their bodies, and the first place to make changes is lunch.  School lunches can be high in fat, calories, and sodium, so packing a lunch is a better option.  Here are some tips to make the best lunches for your kids.

Let’s begin with drinks.  Bottled drinks and juice boxes can be expensive, and may not be the healthiest options.  Instead, buy a leak proof thermos and fill it with one hundred percent juices, water, milk, or homemade lemonade.

Next are sandwiches; perhaps the most popular lunch box item, but also the most boring.  No more peanut butter and jelly.  Try using leftover chicken to make homemade chicken salad, and leftover ham or roast beef for fresh sandwiches.  Adding fresh veggies such as lettuce, tomatoes, sprouts, and cucumbers make them tastier and healthier.  Also, stay away from plain white bread.  Opt for whole grain breads, pitas, bagels, and even wraps.

Fresh fruits and vegetables make great healthy snacking options.  Carrot sticks, celery sticks, cucumber slices, broccoli florets, and grape tomatoes packed with a small cup of dip or dressing is a great choice.  Fresh fruit such as apples, oranges, blueberries, and bananas are easy to eat, and easily stay fresh until lunch time.

Finally, try to stay away from prepackaged snacks of greasy chips and sugary cookies.  Instead, choose leaner options such as pretzels, dried fruit, popcorn, and trail mix.  These snacks are easily packed into lunch boxes, and still give the sweet or salty satisfaction kids need.


Great Fall Season Foods for Dieting

Fall is a great time to get serious about dieting.  With the cooler temperatures, come a variety of fresh fruits, nuts, and veggies that you should most definitely take advantage of.  These foods are easy to get during the fall season, and can help you stick to your plan, while providing a great deal of nutrition.  Here are some of the top fall foods for dieting.

Apples:  Not only do apples taste great in the fall, they make a perfect food for dieting.  Apples provide an excellent source of fiber, vitamin C, and flavonoids.  This tasty fruit is also linked to warding off high cholesterol, cancer, and even Alzheimer’s disease.

Grapefruit:  Citrus fruit comes into season in the fall and is packed with tons of vitamin C, fiber, and potassium.  They are also low in sodium and calories.  Some studies suggest that eating grapefruit regularly can even help your body to burn more fat.

Cranberries:  While often associated with turkey and Thanksgiving dinner, cranberries are a great source of vitamin C and proanthocyandidin, which helps to keep your urinary tract in tip top condition.

Walnuts:  You may not be aware of it, but fall is nut season.  Walnuts are perhaps the perfect nut for dieting because they provide a good amount of omega 3 fatty acids, protein, fiber, magnesium, vitamin E, and B vitamins.  Walnuts have also been linked to reducing the risk of heart disease and provide vascular benefits, by lowering LDL cholesterol levels.

Broccoli:  Well known as a super food, broccoli contains fiber, calcium, iron, potassium, vitamin C, B vitamins, and many other important nutrients.  This veggie is also linked to lowering the risk of diabetes, heart disease, certain types of cancer, and Alzheimer’s disease.