Brenda Schwerdt, For the News Tribune
Part of my job that I love the most is that I learn something new every day, and I have recently been learning a great deal about pulses. Pulses are on track to be at the top of the most popular food trends list; however, pulses are a food that has been around for quite some time, evidence of them dates back 11,000 years ago to the fertile crescent.
Many New Year's resolutions are health, diet and fitness related, and now that we are into the New Year, take some time to reexamine those resolutions. Most often, our motivation for our resolution is the highest during the beginning of the year. Try to harness that motivation and keep it going throughout the entire year.
This time of year often brings a bounty of sweets, which often means lots of extra calories, fat and sugar. However, there are many ways to reduce these items without compromising flavor in your sweets.
This time of year is filled with a variety of family, friend and professional get-togethers and also tis-the-season for gift giving. I know I am a bit biased toward food, but I think small handmade food items can be the perfect gift to have on hand.
A common definition of flour is a powder obtained by grinding grain, typically wheat and used to make bread, cakes and pastry. However, that definition is changing. No longer are flours limited to only cereal grains. Wheat flour remains the most common type of flour, but you can also find flours made from a variety of grains such as corn, rice, barley, buckwheat and rye. Flours can also be made out of nuts, seeds and legumes such as peanuts, soy and chickpeas. Different types of flours have different culinary and nutritional properties.
The National Institute on Drug Abuse defines addiction as a chronic, relapsing brain disease that is characterized by compulsive seeking and use, despite harmful consequences. It is considered a brain disease because the addiction actually changes the chemistry of the brain. Transfer addiction, also called cross addiction or substitute addiction, is trading one addiction for another. As a dietitian who works with a variety of weight loss patients, this topic is one that I frequently discuss with my patients.
One of the first vegetables that can be harvested in the spring is greens. Greens are very nutrient-dense, meaning they are filled with lots of vitamins, minerals and fiber with relatively low calories. The U.S. Department of Agriculture recommends that adults consume a minimum of three cups of leafy greens per week. While lettuce-based salads are a great place to start. there is a wide variety of greens that are readily available in the local supermarket. I find greens to be versatile as they can be consumed raw or cooked into a variety of dishes.
You may have noticed some changes to the nutrition facts label on your favorite food products. All food packages are required to have the new label by July 2019, but some companies have already begun to use the new label. One of the most noticeable changes to the label is the sugar content. The current nutrition label does not differentiate between naturally occurring sugars such as lactose in milk or fructose in fruit, and added sugars. The new nutrition label will list total sugars and make the distinction of how much of total sugars are added sugars.
March is colon cancer awareness month. Colon cancer is the second leading cause of cancer-related death in the United States — the leading cause being lung cancer. A study published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute on Feb. 28 shows that the incidence of colorectal cancer in people ages 20-30 is growing rapidly. According to the American Cancer Society, people who were born in 1990 have double the risk of colon cancer and quadruple the risk of rectal cancer compared to those born in 1950 at the same age.
Everyone experiences stress, and when that happens, a physical reaction takes place in our bodies. Two hormones that get released are adrenaline and cortisol. Adrenaline gives us a surge of energy; it increases your heart rate and elevates your blood pressure. Cortisol is known as the stress hormone; it increases blood glucose and slows the digestive system. Hormones levels should return to normal levels quickly after the stress has passed.