Busting Myths- 20 Nutrition Myths Debunked – Eat Right!

February 12th, 2016

There is so much information on the internet these days, and of course, not all of it is right. Here are twenty nutrition myths that have been debunked by our very own Michelle, our Registered Nutritionist Dietitian.

1. Kale is the healthiest vegetable ever in the history of man-and woman-kind. Not True! In fact any list of the top ten healthy greens will show that kale doesn’t even make the list. Sure, it has a lot of lutein, which helps your eyesight, but you need more than lutein, you also need zeaxanthin, and that combo can best be found in egg yolks, kiwi fruit, spinach, orange juice, zucchini, and grapes. If you like kale, continue eating it, it’s good for you as are all leafy greens. But if you’re looking for the most nutritional value out of a leafy green, good old spinach is your best bet. Your mom was right again, don’t you hate that? Chinese cabbage, chard and watercress are even better. But who knows what to do with watercress? watercress
2.  night-fridge Eating late at night will make you fat. Nope, not true. What science has determined is that the time of day has nothing to do with how your body burns calories. However, if you tend to eat a slice of cheesecake before bed, that in itself will make you gain weight, eaten morning, noon or night. If you missed supper and want to eat it late, and if it’s part of your healthy diet, not to worry. The scientists say that is a-ok.
3. Eating eggs raises your cholesterol. Boy, did the egg farmers hate this one! A study shows that cholesterol in food is a minor factor contributing to high blood cholesterol for most people, and studies have not confirmed a correlation between eggs and increased heart-disease risk. The Mayo Clinic says, “Most healthy people can eat up to seven eggs a week with no increase in their risk of heart disease. Some studies have shown that this level of egg consumption may actually prevent some types of strokes. But the story is different for people who have diabetes.”  eggs
4.  frozen-fruit2 Fresh Fruit and Vegetables are more nutritious than frozen. If you are lucky and talented enough to have a great garden from which you can get your food and cook it right away, then this may be true. But most of us pick up our fruit and veggies in the supermarket. Those items, while fresh and good-tasting, may be several days old andwell-travelled, and may have been picked before ripe, which means they have already lost some nutrients. Frozen fruits and vegetables go from field to nearby processing station, and that means they have as many or more nutrients as the fresh ones. And some frozen items are just as good as fresh when used in a recipe.
5. You’ll burn more calories by eating many small meals per day. No, you’ll burn the same number of calories by eating the usual three meals a day, with healthy snacks. For some people this may work for weight loss, and hey, whatever works, if it’s healthy, do it! But scientifically, the calories burned are the same. In fact, eating several small meals doesn’t let your body burn fat, as it’s constantly releasing insulin. What kind of hungry are you?Is a terrific blog post you should read about hunger.  small-meal
6.  buy-coffee Coffee is unhealthy. You coffee addicts are going to be so happy. Coffee is loaded with antioxidants, as well as other compounds that actually may make you live longer. So raise your cup to healthy living, and drink coffee!! Stay away from the cream, though.
7. Eating Low Fat or Fat Free foods is healthier and better for weight loss. Unfortunately, if manufacturers remove fat, which, let’s face it, is where the flavor is, they have to add in other unhealthy things like thickeners and flavors, and chemicals. And that adds just as many calories. A study in Canada showed, “claims such as “100 per cent fat free,” “zero grams of fat,” “low in fat,” “lean” or “extra lean,” contain “minimal to nil” fewer calories…Numerous studies have shown that what matters in weight loss is the total number of calories consumed per day, and not the specific food or “macronutrient” such as fats, protein or carbs”, said Dr. David Lau, a professor of medicine at the University of Calgary. lowfatTrue Low fat! >>
8.  lowcarb Low carb diets are bad for you. There are all kinds of websites out there touting one diet over another. The truth is that either low-fat or low-carb diets will work if you stick to them, and neither of them has long-term health effects. Use the one that works for you, sick to it, and learn lessons from it on how to eat in the future to maintain your fantastic shape. And don’t forget to exercise!
9. Low cholesterol foods are healthier. Our bodies regulate cholesterol. If we eat more, the body produces less. If we eat less, the body produces more. Even the US government agrees!
10.  low-chol We should detox a couple of times a year. No, please don’t. These diets claim to clean toxins out of your liver and colon, clear your skin and energize you. But the body detoxes itself. It is designed to do so. What people feel- more energy, etc., likely is from going from a bad diet to a more healthy one. Don’t believe? Listen to what US scientists say.
11. Everyone should eat less sodium. Scientific American said in its 2011 article, “It’s Time to End the War on Salt!“. And in 2013, a study showed that Low-sodium diets may not be as beneficial as previously thought. And the America Journal of Hypertension said in a 2014 study that “Systematic Review of Health Outcomes in Relation to Salt Intake Highlights the Widening Divide Between Guidelines and the Evidence”. Which in non-science-speak means that guidelines on salt might be out of date, and that not everyone needs to lower their salt intake.   low-sod
12.  joke-1 Bread and other carbs have to be avoided. Healthy carbs are an essential part of a healthy diet. You should definitely eat carbs, and you should also eat them in healthy quantities. The problem is highly-refined carbohydrates, those you usually find at the open-24-hours store. Twinkies, poptarts, sugary cereals, all these are bad carbs. But the right kind of carbohydrates can boost your health!
13. Raw veggies are better than cooked. Not true, according to various scientific studies. In fact, cooked foods often supply more of what you need in terms of nutritional goodness. For instance, boiling and steaming increase antioxidants. Cooking carrots increases their beta-carotene, which gets converted to Vitamin A in your body. So chow down on raw and cooked vegetables, and enjoy!  veg
14.  sweet-nuff Sugar causes diabetes. While being overweight can contribute to your getting type 2 diabetes, and eating too many sugary foods can lead to weight gain, the American Diabetes Association assures us that eating sugar itself can’t cause diabetes. They highly recommend limiting your intake of sugary beverages like soda, fruit drinks and energy drinks. They say that, “Research has shown that drinking sugary drinks is linked to type 2 diabetes”.
15. Cancer cells feed on sugar. This is a myth, says the Cancer Society. But it may indirectly cause cancer by contributing to obesity. By the way, they also say that non-nutritive sweeteners also do not cause cancer. Be smart, eat limited amounts of both.  sugar-poison
16.  steak Avoid red meat at all costs. Don’t! Meat is delicious, full of nutrition and our bodies are made to eat it. We’re carnivores, and avoiding meat makes no sense unless you have to or are avoiding it for personal reasons. Authority Nutrition says, “There are no proven health benefits to avoiding meat.”
17. Calories are calories. We’ve all thought for a long time that calories in-calories out=calorie deficit/addition. In other words, simplistically, if I need 2000 calories a day to function, and I cut that back to 1500 calories a day, I’ll lose weight. And I will. But it’s not as simple as that. The foods we eat can have a huge impact on the biological processes that govern when, what and how much we eat. Read more here.  calorie
18.  ban-hfcs High fructose corn syrup will kill you dead. High Frucose Corn Syrup has been in the news and on commercials since 2004, when Dr. Barry Popkin associated it with the obesity epidemic. Singling out HFCS turned out to be unjustified, Popkin now admits. “Dozens of human studies on HFCS and energy intake and weight change show that our hypothesis was wrong.” He does suggest, however, that it is because of ALL the sugars now prevalent in our diet. He says that calorie-free sweeteners are just as bad, and that the sweet drinks we all imbibe are the worst things of all. Little to no sugar or fake sugar is the aim. But so hard to turn away from the sweetness.
19. The Quinoa craze is hurting the Peruvians and Bolivians. The South Americans who grow quinoa have never been happier. They are making money, and changing their lives. What may hurt them is if the crop goes worldwide, and there are people working on their side.  quinoa-farmer
20.  coc-oil Coconut Oil is the best thing ever. Coconut oil is still a fat, and it has all the benefits and hazards of fats. It’s high in calories, and numerous reports show that it also raises LDL (bad) cholesterol just like other saturated fats, such as butter.

 

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Are Your Elderly Parents Eating Right?

February 6th, 2016

Rear View Of Senior Couple Walking Along Autumn PathDo you know the answer to the following question? Are your senior parents eating right and are they getting the proper nutrition for this stage of life? The nutrition needs for our bodies don’t necessarily change as we age, it’s the way we get that nutrition that does. The reason for the concern about keeping the nutrients up in the elderly include (but aren’t limited to):

  • Diminished activity, causing fewer calories to be needed, reducing hunger
  • Dental issues – it can be quite painful to eat when the mouth is inflamed
  • Depression
  • Changes in the gastric system
  • Taste buds and smells change as we age, sometimes causing food to smell/taste unfamiliar.

Right now freezer cooking seems to be all the rage. It makes sense to have ready to cook or ready to heat up meals available. It’s such a huge time-saver. One of the problems with this is the repetitiveness. Not to mention the difficulty in preparing a meal that will meet your senior parent’s diet requirements. Frequently, one member of the household needs a specialized diet, while the rest of the family may eat a “normal” diet – or they may have different nutrition needs altogether. Some diet requirements to consider are:

  • Gluten intolerance
  • Low carbohydrate/low sugar/diabetes
  • Portion controlled/different calorie counts

Stuffed_BellPepperFortunately, MagicKitchen.com has taken all of these aspects into consideration when making their cooked meals for delivery. There are many choices available for seniors, so they can select meals to nourish their bodies in the proper way. These meals are packed with protein which supports muscle mass and helps the immune system, They are low in sodium – making them heart healthy, and a great source for potassium – which aids in reduction of kidney stones, maintaining muscle mass, and prevention of stroke.

Selection of the right foods and preparing them might seem pretty daunting to aging adults. MagicKitchen.com enables you to sit down with your aging parent and select cooked meals for delivery of healthy, delicious food. It allows them to be able to get the nutrition necessary to reduce the risk of not eating or eating junk food because it is just “easier”. With MagicKitchen.com delivering meals, all that needs to be done is pop them in the microwave. In four to five minutes, a tasty, nutrient-dense meal is ready to eat!  Seniors can feel good about this as they retain independence, and you can feel at ease knowing your aging parent is eating right. Select meals individually, or set up an automatic senior meal plan.

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10 Tips for getting in Shape

February 2nd, 2016

The festivities are over, now really over even if they lasted an extra month, as they did for some of us. They came with a lot of fun and consequently, a little or a lot of weight gain.

running

Now it is the time to make changes, and losing weight is the first task in your to-do list. However, working out regularly and toning up can be very challenging. Here are some great ideas, the Top Ten Workout Routines!

A good workout routine needs a little innovation and a lot of motivation to easily make it a habit. Here are top ten ways that will get you moving and staying healthy all year long:

Running and swimming

Swimming and running may be considered two separate workout routines. However, when done together, they will help you maintain fitness and use some of those neglected muscle groups. When your body is mobile, you will lose a good amount of weight.

Walking tied with yoga

Walking is a well-known exercise that should be incorporated into every workout routine. When walking and yoga are tied together, they could provide similar health benefits to weightscycling. This keeps you very fit.

Weight lifting

Weight lifting is not all about being buffed and chiseled. Contrary to what people believe, weight lifting is a good workout routine that helps you burn fat.

ell-kickElliptical and kick boxing

Elliptical machines are used to stimulate climbing, walking and running. This kind of exercise should be paired with kick boxing because the two will help lose weight twice as fast than an ordinary exercise would.

Eat healthy

Losing weight will get you in good shape; therefore, you need to consume fewer calories than what is needed to maintain your weight. Exercise alone does not cut it.

mountaineerMountain Climbing

This may be the best exercise to incorporate into your daily workout routine because it does not require any special equipment. Mountain climbing is advantageous as it tones your body thus burns fat quickly.

Hiking and brisk walking

Running and brisk walking easily improves your fitness every time you do it. The ideal way is to hike then brisk walk for a few minutes in between intervals.

Stretching

dancing2When you do not use all of your muscles on a daily basis, simple activates such as climbing the stairs may be strenuous for you. Constant stretching and using resistance training plans will help you burn fat, get in shape and stay that way for life. This should be done on a daily basis.

Playing tennis

Although this may be an underrated exercise, running after the tennis ball will help you get into shape. Tennis helps you strengthen your muscles and easily lose weight.

Dancing

Dancing is often considered as a fun activity. However, it does not matter whether you are dancing in a night club or are slow dancing. Anytime you move your body, you will burn excessive calories.

Staying in good shape will help you to improve your health and be confident in your own skin. Try out these proven routines and you are well on your way to being in perfect shape!

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Healthy Meals Delivered

January 22nd, 2016

seniors-exerciseThe holidays are finally over, and you’ve committed the 2016 year to improving your health through diet and exercise. So far, your diet is going well, but you are so tired at the end of the day that cooking a healthy meal often feels like too much work! It’s much easier to slip back into your old, unhealthy ways of stopping by McDonalds on your way home from work or ordering a pizza for dinner and relax in front of the television all evening. We understand what you are going through, and are here to help you achieve success with your New Year’s resolution to be a healthier, more active you!

MagicKitchen.com offers a wide selection of healthy, delicious meals delivered right to your door. Many of the meals take only a few minutes to cook in the microwave or bake in the oven – enough time for you to change into your comfy pajamas and pour yourself a glass of wine.

Veal Parmigiana2Eating healthy does not mean that your food should taste like a cardboard box, either. The portion-controlled meals created in our kitchens are prepared by top chefs using the highest quality produce, spices, and ingredients available on the market. Meals like Buttermilk Pancakes with Egg Patties and Turkey Sausage for breakfast or Beef Tenderloin with Red Wine Sauce, Mashed Potatoes with Peas & Carrots for dinner are tasty, healthy food choices to satisfy your stomach.

Of course, even when you’re on a diet you can sometimes get a sweet tooth. When your sweet tooth strikes, try satisfying your taste buds with our delectable Double Fudge Brownie. This satisfying sweet treat is made with Guittard’s dark chocolate wafers that are packed with healthy antioxidants, and half a serving contains only 102 calories and 5 grams of fat. Note that is half a serving- but you’ll never be so happy to eat half a serving.

At MagicKitchen.com, we understand that balancing your work-life schedule is tiresome enough and that you may be too tired in the evening to cook a healthy meal for yourself or your family. Our chef-prepared, dietitian approved healthy meal packages delivered to your door allow you to rest easy and focus on the more important aspects of life – your family – while helping you achieve your New Year’s resolution goals.

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Start Planning your Summer Vacation Now!

January 15th, 2016

winter-miseryGot the winter and/or post-holiday blahs? Suffering from seasonal affective disorder? (a condition whereby you get depressed primarily due to the lack of natural light…I would think this hits Alaskans pretty hard this time of year). Got a bad case of cabin fever? Stuck in the doldrums?  Whatever you call it, this time of year can cause even the happiest person to go through severe bouts of malaise and apathy. However, there is a way to fight back and it’s called planning for your upcoming summer vacation.

marley-2In the immortal words of Bob Marley (who was from perpetually warm and sunny Jamaica by the way), “Ever little thing is gonna be alright.” As the Earth makes its way around the sun, January gives way to the most hated (and shortest) month of the year…February, which means spring is right around the corner which means increased amounts of daylight, baseball, and the pending summer. But sometimes, in the middle of winter, with its endless steel gray skies, snow squalls, wind chills, iced-over windshields, and bulky coats, we forget that summer is, in fact, on its way. There is, however, one sure way to remind us of the approaching summer and that’s to begin planning for your summer vacation in the height of winter.

There are a number of benefits to performing this sometimfuity-cocktailes overlooked activity. If you start the process now, you should be able to book exactly where you want, when you want due to the fact that your calendar is only on its first page and most people haven’t given thought to their summer vacation. But most importantly, its gets you thinking of summer, tan lines, sunshine, outdoor dining, sunshine, beaches, and did I mention sunshine? Anticipating the summer holiday should help blast away the winter blues.

Here’s my last bit of advice…as you plan your summer vacation in the midst of winter, crank the heat, don some beachwear, get a tropical scene for your computer’s wallpaper, blast the aforementioned Marley or other “warm” music, enjoy an over-sized and fruity cocktail, and encourage your friends and/or family to join you in this small, but significant break from the icy and seemingly perpetual grip of Old Man Winter.

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Games to Keep Your Brain in Shape

January 11th, 2016

forget-somethingHave you noticed, as we age, our ability to concentrate and remember certain things slowly diminishes? Maybe you have started noticing yourself walking into a room, and then forgetting what you originally needed; or maybe you have been forgetting about important meetings and doctor appointments? Either way, we are sure you have noticed the slippery downhill slope that is associated with an aging brain. This is very normal and one of the leading causes of a memory that is as slippery as an ice rink is the increased levels of stress we endure on a daily basis.

So, what can you do to keep your brain in shape?

Of course, you could read a book, but maybe reading bores you as much as watching paint dry and grass grow. That’s okay! There are thousands of games to keep your brain in shape – some of which you may not even have to pay for. We’ve compiled a short list of different types of games that can help your brain get back into shape, and keep it that way.

seniorin mit brille lst ein kreuzwortrtselCrossword Puzzles

Crossword puzzles challenge your brain to learn – and remember – different words and their meanings. Often played alone, you can add a new, exciting spin to your daily crossword puzzle by competing with a friend. Challenge your friend to a crossword contest where the winner pays for lunch!

Board Games

Board games such as Monopoly and Yahtzee are fun, interactive games that require concentration to win. Additionally, in order to “pass go” without going bankrupt, you have to have a certain level of business sense and money management skills.

Video Games

Video games tend to have a ‘bad rap’ for being an unproductive time-waster; many adults often forget that many games offer brain-boosting capabilities. Take, for example, the popular foodie puzzle game Candy Crush Saga. It challenges the part of the brain that helps us make correct decisions. After all, completing level 120 the first time is no easy task!

Games are a fun way to unwind after a busy, stressful day; a way to spend time with your family and friends, or simply engage in some solitary stress therapy, but they can also help improve your memory, focus, and concentration skills. After all, if the Alzheimer’s Association recommends playing games to keep our brain in shape, games can’t be all bad, right?

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Top Ten Healthiest Frozen Foods

December 25th, 2015
Healthy Frozen Meals

Spinach Mushroom Lasagna with Green Beans

There’s no doubt that frozen foods are some of the most convenient foods on the planet. But if you’re eating healthy,  you have concerns about eating them. Here are the top ten healthiest frozen foods on the market.

1. MagicKitchen.com – Our meals are made by hand without preservatives, and we show the nutritional panel on each product page. We have categories for Diabetic, Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Low Carbohydrate, Low Cholesterol, Low Fat, Low Sodium, Vegetarian in our HomeStyle menu. We also feature our MK Special Menu Meals, which are complete meals especially created by our chefs for the convenience and health of those on special diets. Our choice, ease of purchase and customer service make us the best website to buy from. Our meals give us the honor of being the healthiest frozen meals around. Customer reviews >>

2. Edamame. They’re low in fat and calories and high in protein, fiber and almost every other essential vitamin and mineral. Heat them per instructions, toss with a little sesame oil and soy sauce, and you have a terrific snack.

3. Brown Rice has the whole grain, nothing taken away but the hull, so it’s way better for you than white rice. You can buy it frozen, which eliminates the usual 40 minute cooking time. It’s nutty and chewy and really good!

4. Trader Joe’s Vegetarian Masala Burger reportedly is very healthy. I can’t say I’m a big fan of vegetarian burgers, but I guess if they disguise the taste in some masala spices…

5. Jennie-o Frozen Turkey Breast Tenderloins – these aren’t heavily processed, are lower in sodium, and very lean.  You can get recipes here.

6. ah-scoops-mango-400Häagen-Dazs Mango Fat Free Sorbet – No fat, people! That doesn’t mean you can eat the whole container, but a half a cup is only 150 calories, and no fat grams.

7. Alexia all natural sweet potato fries – Only 174 calories and 5 g of fat for the delightful taste treat of 3 ounces of sweet potato fries. We both know you’ll double that, so keep it as your only ingredient for supper. Vitamin A, Vitamin C, calcium, potassium, and iron. That’s a healthy dinner!

8. Tyson Grilled Chicken Breast Strips – Already grilled, so heat them up for a sandwich wrap, a stirfry, a taco, or a salad!

9. Engine 2 Grain Medleys – Ancient Grains Blend – contains organic quinoa, organic farro, organic red lentils, organic brown rice, organic black birdeseye-peachesbarley. That’s like so much healthy stuff that you won’t need to eat healthy again for a week. Kidding! Of course we eat healthy every meal.

10. Birdseye Ultimate Frozen Sliced Peaches – If you can’t find fresh, frozen peaches are great in recipes. Little did you know that the lowly peach supplies you with Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Potassium, Fiber, Antioxidants, and small amounts of Vitamin E, Vitamin K, Vitamin B-6, thiamine, riboflavin, and more.

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Watch Out for an Empty-Calorie Ambush During the Holidays

December 23rd, 2015

empty-calsThey’re everywhere. During the holidays, they invade every grocery store, shopping mall, party, and family gathering. And just when you thought you were safe, they show up at your front door on a plate, in a gift basket, or in the mailbox. If you want to eat healthy and prevent weight gain, you’ve got to watch out for an empty-calorie ambush during the holidays.

Step on the scale before and after the holidays, and there’s a good chance you’ll have gained a few pounds. The average adult gains 1 to 3 pounds a year during the holidays, and it’s a problem that can lead to obesity and other health risks. But it doesn’t have to be that way.

MagicKitchen.com has a large selection of healthy meals and healthier desserts to choose from that will help you eat well. Knowing where empty calories are hiding can help, too. Here’s what to watch for:

Desserts

Lemon Tarte, 144 calories per serving. And simply divine.

Lemon Tarte, 144 calories per serving. And simply divine.

How about dessert under 250 calories? You won’t find that with a restaurant-sized serving of cheesecake, or mountain of chocolate ice cream topped with whipped cream and more than 500 calories. But MagicKitchen.com has a large selection of lower-calorie desserts to choose from. Pay attention to calories in desserts to avoid eating more than you should.

Drinks

Sure, the holidays are a reason to celebrate. But that doesn’t mean you have to pop open a bottle of bubbly for every get-together, toss back a glass of wine or two every night between now and the new year, or guzzle another cup of punch or soda, during the holidays. These drinks might taste good, but there’s a price to pay for drinking them. They’re loaded with sugar and empty calories. Your best option, drink more water. Your body needs it, and it contains zero calories. Plus, it goes well with any meal on the menu at MagicKitchen.com.

Snacks and Sweet Treats

You know they’re everywhere during the holidays. But it doesn’t take many cookies, handfuls of caramel popcorn, or sweet treats to derail your diet. Plan ahead and pick out healthy snacks like fresh-cut veggies, hummus dip, and whole-grain crackers. Or pick a healthy side like French Bread, Creamy Spinach dip, Sweet Potatoes, Crab Cakes, or Verdura Gourmet Artisan Flatbread with Kalamata Olives.

xmas-portion-contorlPortion Sizes

Last but not least, you’ll cross paths with excess calories during the holidays in the form of biggie-sized servings, second helpings, and meals big enough for two. Practice portion control during the holidays to keep your weight in check. Using a smaller plate, splitting a restaurant meal with a friend, or eating slowly and only until you feel full can help. You’ll also find healthy meals that are just the right size at MagicKitchen.com.

Keep your eye out for empty calories during the holidays, and you’ll have another reason to celebrate the New Year when you step on the scale.

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4 Ways to Be Happy and Healthy During the Holidays

December 23rd, 2015

Santa eating cookieJust because you’re a little older doesn’t mean Santa isn’t watching anymore. If Mr. Claus or his little helpers get a look at what you’re eating, will you be on the nice list or the naughty list? Too many sweet treats, fast food, or skipped meals will land you on the naughty list. Eat healthy, and you’ll get more than just coal in your stocking.

For seniors, it’s especially important to eat healthy, because poor eating habits can have a negative effect on existing health problems like heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, or getting better after having surgery. You also need to eat well to keep your bones, body and brain healthy. Here are five ways to be happy and healthy during the holidays.

1. Pay Attention to Calories

For some seniors, eating too many calories from sugary drinks, snacks, and large portion sizes is a problem. And for others skipping meals, and not eating enough healthy food, can lead to poor nutrition. Fortunately, there’s a better way. Pay attention to the amount of calories you’re eating per day. If you’re moderately active, the National Institutes of Health recommends seniors eat 1,800 to 2,400 calories per day. Check out our large selection of Senior Meals and look for the calorie count per serving.

2. Take Time to Rest

There’s a reason Santa takes a whole year off after the holidays. It’s tiring. Travelling, shopping, driving in traffic, or navigating airports can be stressful, too. And you need to give yourself time to rest and recover. Why? When you’re tired or fatigued, you’re more likely to overeat. So go ahead Grandparents laughing with grandchildrenand give yourself permission to take an afternoon nap if you feel like it.

3. Laugh, Love, and Enjoy the Celebrations

When you get older and see life a little differently after years of experience, you start to appreciate the little things more. Spending time with your family and friends to laugh, love, and celebrate the holidays is fun, but it’s also good for your health. Studies show laughter and feelings of happiness or joy can actually lower blood pressure, reduce pain, and improve your mood. Healthy comfort foods like Chicken Mac & Cheese with Broccoli, Peas & Corn, Spaghetti and Meatballs, and Turkey Chili with Brown Rice can help, too.

4. Stay Active

It’s important to stay active as you age to keep your bones healthy and your muscles strong. So look for ways to stay active during the holidays. Take seniors-exercisea walk after a big meal. Put your treadmill or exercise bike to good use. Or attend a local fitness class for seniors like tai chi, yoga, or water aerobics. Regular exercise will give you an appetite, so make sure you stock up on ingredients at the grocery store or our large selection of healthy meals made just for seniors.

Cookies and sweet treats are easy to find during the holidays, but that doesn’t mean you should gobble them up. If you do, you might end up on the naughty list by Santa and your doctor.

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Tips to Help You Through the Holidays on a Renal Diet

December 23rd, 2015

What’s for dinner? It’s something everyone who plans to attend a party, family gathering, or night out at a restaurant during the holidays wants to know. But if it’s the usual fare, a lot of the food might be off limits if you have renal disease. Then what? No, you don’t have to stay home while everyone else has a good time. You just need to have a plan. Here are a few things to keep in mind to help you through the holidays on a renal diet.

Two Mature Female Friends Talking In Kitchen TogetherTalk to the Cook

If you’re attending a private holiday party or family gathering where food will be served, talk to the cook ahead of time. A good host and cook will want to know if you or any other guests have special dietary needs. But they won’t know what those are unless you let them know.

Provide some suggestions about foods suitable for those with renal disease, or offer to bring a dish you can eat like something from the Renal Meals Menu. Just ask. You’ll find that most people are willing to accommodate your special diet.

If you’ll be eating out at a restaurant, plan ahead by calling the restaurant or looking at the menu online for renal-friendly items on the menu.

Eat Turkey

cured-meatsNo not all turkey is created equal. But it’s a common main dish served at holiday dinners. Find out if a skinless, low-sodium version is available. Or prepare your own by limiting salt and sodium-based marinades to season the turkey. If you don’t have the time or inclination to prepare a turkey, check out the turkey-based dishes available from our selection of renal-friendly meals. And steer clear of cured meats like sausage, bacon, and canned meats, all high in sodium.

Choose Low-Potassium Fruits and Veggies

Your best source of nutrients when you have renal disease is fruits and vegetables. You’ll find lots variations of fruits and veggies served at home, parties, and restaurants during the holidays. But you can just eat any. Steer clear of veggies high in potassium like bananas and prunes. Look for ways to include low-potassium fruits and veggies in your diet like bell peppers, onions, green beans, carrots, onions, and mushrooms. You’ll find lots of renal-friendly meals with fresh vegetables at MagicKitchen.com like Chicken Marsala with Rice, and Peas, and Carrots, or try the Breaded Fish Wedge with Green Beans and Cauliflower.

Do Dessert Right

Dessert in any form isn’t exactly healthy. But there’s lot of it around during the holidays. But just because you have renal disease, doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a little. Skip popular desserts like ice cream and chocolate, because both are high in potassium and protein. Instead, go with something like pumpkin pie topped with whipped cream to keep your renal diet on track.

fluidsWatch Your Fluids

You already know the rules about fluids when you have renal disease. You need to limit the amount of fluid you consume from food and drinks to prevent your kidneys from developing a problems. Many health professionals suggest that those with renal disease should not drink alcohol, and it’s a good idea to follow. Instead limit the amount of fluid you drink to water or juice.

Be Smart

When you have renal disease, limit the amount of sodium, potassium, phosphorus, protein, and fluids you consume. Make eating this way a habit, and stay on top of it during the holidays. Eating the right foods, and avoiding others, will help you manage renal disease. Be sure to get enough sleep (7 to 8 hours is best), stay warm, and do everything you can to avoid catching a cold, which can aggravate symptoms associated with renal disease.

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