If you're looking for a new vegetable, give cabbage's crazy cousin a try. Consider kohlrabi, an uncommon vegetable that's mainly eaten in central and eastern Europe. The plants thrive in a cool climate like ours. You also can find kohlrabi in grocery store produce sections and farmers' markets. Kohlrabi, a member of the cabbage family, is descended from both the wild cabbage and the wild turnip. Its name is German for "cabbage turnip."
Olive oil has a healthy reputation, but you've probably wondered if it's worth paying a healthy price for a bottle. Research shows olive oil can lower your risk for heart disease and cancer, improve insulin sensitivity and reduce inflammation. The health benefits are attributed to olive oil's primary components. Oleic acid is its predominant monounsaturated fatty acid. This is the healthy fat associated with a reduced risk of heart and other chronic diseases. Other components of olive oil, including vitamin E, work as an antioxidant.
Food shopping can be confusing. More than 20,000 new products are introduced into grocery stores every year, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. These products come in eye-catching wrappers and offer health claims to entice us to buy.
January is the month to declare we are going to eat healthier and get in better shape. As you cruise the internet to find more ways to eat fruits and vegetables, you may began doubting bananas. Internet pop-up ads have made the banana into a food villain. It's listed as one of the five worst foods you can eat. Weight-loss clinics condemn the banana. The banana is claimed to have a high glycemic index, be packed with carbohydrates (sugars) and too high in calories.
Potassium is an essential mineral for our bodies, but many of us are not getting enough in the foods we eat. Potassium is important for our bodies to digest food efficiently and help avoid constipation. It helps build strong muscles and makes them properly relax and contract. Potassium keeps our hearts beating correctly and our blood pressure in a good range. It also helps lower our risk for kidney stones and bone loss.
Americans enjoy eating out. It's convenient, and we like to have someone else do the cooking and cleanup. We spend a lot of money eating meals away from home or bringing in carry-out. It's estimated that half of our food dollars are now spent in restaurants or grocery store delis, cafeterias, gas stations and vending machines. This is nine times higher than in 1975. In 2014, Consumer Reports magazine estimated that Americans were spending more than $680 billion each year in restaurants.
Peanut butter has been a mainstay in American kitchens for generations. But with more people seeking the healthy fats found in nuts, a growing variety of nut and seed butters are appearing on grocery shelves.
It is fall and football season. Gathering to attend a game or watch one on television is part of life in the Northland. Food and football usually bring out pizza, potlucks and snacks. It's hard to keep healthy eating on track during fall weekends. But with a little creativity and menu-planning, you can fit heart-healthy options into the fun.
It is the A to Z time of summer: August brings an abundance of zucchini. Zucchini is exploding in our gardens and filling up stands at farmers' markets. What do we do with this green veggie, and its close cousin, the yellow summer squash? A popular option is zucchini bread. Recipes often add a lot of sugar and then we top the bread with high saturated fat butter. This tasty treat does not promote the health benefits of this summer garden gem.
July is National Blueberry Month, and this dark blue gem is worth celebrating. Blueberries are packed with nutrition. Their deep, rich color signals that they are high in antioxidants, which have the potential to reduce the risk of many illnesses and diseases caused by oxidative stress in our bodies.