Healthy Food Combinations

Need an Energy Boost, Lose a Few Pounds, or Increase Mental Clarity?

We all know that certain foods when combined together will give us an energy boost in the afternoon when we need to get through the day, or help us lose a few pounds (or more) to fit into that new dress or pants for a special party; however, these foods change (it seems) from year to year.

I read so many of these “superfoods” that it makes me dizzy just reading so much and then I forget what I should eat and when. Sometimes I think I should just carry a notepad with me to keep track of everything.

However, I did read an article in the recent issue of All You, that is simple to remember, only combines 2 foods and you only need to remember the combinations that you need.

Try a Meatless Monday dinner with this black bean and red pepper dish - cornbread salad. Courtesy of Ezrapoundcake.com

Good for the Waistline

Whole-grain toast with cinnamon. Think of your childhood cinnamon toast (one of my absolute faves too), but without all the sugar. Since whole-grain bread doesn’t make your blood sugar spike and make you hungry again so soon, this is a good breakfast treat. Butter your toast and sprinkle with a little cinnamon, which is also known to help keep you alert and focused.

Boost Immune System

Black beans and bell peppers. Black beans are full of iron that helps increase your immune system; however, the plant-based protein is harder to absorb unless you add vitamin C. Red bell peppers are an excellent source of Vitamin C. So combine these two plants together whether you’re making a salad, salsa, chili or mixing them with rice. (These 2 are a staple in my cupboards and frig!)

Increase Mental Clarity

Blueberries and strawberries. Truly brain food in these fruits. Increase memory, mental clarity and may even reduce feelings of depression. Opt for a 1/2 cup each of blueberries and strawberries every day. Blueberry juice is also another way to boost your memory (ensure you are drinking 100% and not mostly high fructose corn syrup).

 

 

#DIY Household Fixes with Items You Already Own

Anytime I read an article, see or hear a tip about using everyday household items to replace another store bought chemical or cleaner, I am ecstatic. So when the email subject line “xx Ways to Make Your Old Stuff New” begged me to open it, I just couldn’t resist!

I’m sharing my favorites with you.

Banana Peels – Before you throw in the compost bin, use the inner banana peels to banish scuff marks on leather and silverware. Then wipe with a cloth to remove any banana residue.

Toothpaste – Not only good to fight against cavities, but also works well with jewelry and filling holes. White toothpaste can be used to fill in small nail holes on white walls. Remember this when you’re ready to move out of your apartment or rental house so you can retain more of your deposit.

White Bread – Remove the crusts and you have a wallpaper cleaner. Tear into bite sized pieces to remove grime, fingerprints and small smudges. Who knew??

Vinegar – Another reason to keep a gallon of this gem in your cupboard; combine vinegar and salt into a  paste and apply to bathroom tile and faucets to remove lime buildup. Need a drain cleaner? Pour 1/4 cup baking soda in your drains, then follow with 1 cup of vinegar. Set for about 15 minutes, then pour a pot of boiling water down the drain.

WD-40 – Spray on stainless steel and wipe with a clean cloth for a spotless shine.

 

What other tips have you heard about and tried that worked? Share your tips here!

 

 

 

Natural Ways to Relieve Allergy Symptoms

Found this helpful article on Natural Home and Garden website and wanted to share it with you. I’m a 4 season allergy sufferer myself, but when the humidity is high they are even worse in the spring and summer.

Do note that if you have allergies to pollen and other types of flowers, you’ll want to skip the remedy and opt for something else.

Nasal rinses are good for alleviating clogged sinuses and itchy noses. You can buy or make your own nasal rinses using salt and baking soda, dissolve in warm water, then add to a Neti Pot or sinus irrigation bulb.

Here are a few other natural ways to cure those annoying allergy symptoms.

Relieve congestion with horseradish. Steep several spoonfuls of the grated root in a bowl of boiling water or soup stock. Drink and breathe in the pungent aroma. Also try peppermint tea. The sweetness of peppermint combined with the natural menthol helps alleviate congestion and clears nasal passages.

Congestive coughs? Try crushing some anise (1-2 teaspoons) seeds, add to boiling water allow to steep like tea and drink. Also may add anise essential oil to peppermint tea, sweeten to taste. The expectorant qualities of Elder Flower along with vitamins A, B and C make a great tea to relieve coughs and congestion.

Itchy eyes are the most annoying type of allergy symptom. Try soothing itchy eyes with cool, wet Chamomile tea bags placed on your eyelids. (Do not use if you have allergies to ragweed.)  You might also try Stinging Nettle tea or capsules from fresh freeze dried leaves. Stinging nettle is known for reducing the histamine produced from some allergens.