Monthly Archives: May 2016

Diabetic Diet Ideal for All

For the 21 million Americans with diabetes, losing and/or maintaining weight is of critical importance in order to avoid complications caused by the disease.  Most of them manage their weight through exercise and diet…and by diet I don’t necessarily mean being “on” a diet, because that implies their diet is temporary.  It is not.  It is the permanent state of making healthy food choices out of necessity.  It is a lifestyle, not a diet in the traditional sense, and we could all benefit from rethinking what the term “diet” entails as most diabetics already have.

carImagine, if you will, that you’re a car and you’re required to drive up a long, steady incline, which you complete without too much trouble.  Now imagine having to complete the same task with some “junk in your trunk,” say the concrete remains of a sidewalk that was just torn up.  You manage to make it up the hill, but your engine had to work a whole lot harder and as you climb that hill, day after day, parts begin to fail.  The same can happen to humans with excess weight (or too much junk in the trunk).  Complications ensue…heart disease, high blood pressure, increased risk of stroke, cancer, and type II diabetes.

scaleSo, as you can see, being overweight should be a concern to us all, not just diabetics. And one way to lose or maintain your weight is to follow the lifestyle choices most diabetics follow in terms of what and how they eat.  As always, most of us already know what’s healthy (fresh fruits and veggies, lean protein) and what is not (a venti cinnamon dolce latte, muffins the size of your head).  After all, this isn’t rocket science here.

One thing many diabetics do is strictly monitor and track what they consume.  In other words, they COUNT CALORIES…gasp!  And it’s a good idea for all of us.  Just count your caloric intake for a few days.  My guess is that the difference between what you believe that number to be and what it actually is will surprise you…in a bad, OMG way.  Another thing most diabetics do is plan their meals ahead of time and then stick to that plan…no spur of the moment stops at DQ for a $5 nail to place in your coffin. A diabetic diet just makes sense.

supermarketMany diabetics also limit the intake of their carbohydrates and consume non-starchy vegetables (avoid potatoes, corn and peas).  They also eat whole grains and avoid refined or processed flour and sugar (avoid Twinkies and Chips Ahoy cookies).  They eat only lean protein (fish, skinless chicken, pork, beans and soy products).  They eat fresh fruit and avoid the frozen or canned variety as they often have added sugar.  And lastly, they eat “healthy” fats such as those derived from avocados, olives, nuts and seeds.  Just remember, the best diet is one you can stay “on” forever.

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The Logistics Behind Prepared Meals Delivered

Most people who have availed themselves of our services here at MagicKitchen.com know that we deliver nutritious and delicious meals right to your door.  They know that we provide prepared meals that meet a wide variety of nutritional requirements, to include diabetic and dialysis friendly, gluten-free, low-carb, heart healthy, and low sodium.  What many of our customers do not know is the logistics involved in the meal delivery business and how we strive to keep transportation costs down.

Our Facility in Kansas

As they say in real estate, the top three things to consider when buying a property are location, location, and location and we did just that when we located our warehouse facilities in Kansas.  Why Kansas you ask?  Due to its centralized location within the lower 48 states, Kansas saves us, and thus, you, on shipping costs.  It matters little whether we ship to either coast, southern Texas or the upper peninsula of Michigan, shipping costs are kept to a minimum.

After our chefs have prepared and cooked your healthy and appetizing meals, they are quickly flash-frozen to lock in the essential vitamins, minerals and taste that you have come to expect.  Obviously, they must be kept in that frozen state as they are shipped to your door and that requires dry ice (which is simply carbon dioxide in solid form, FYI).  The inclusion of dry ice adds to the weight of the shipment which adds to its cost as well.  However, if you live in a warmer climate, say southern Florida or California, we add extra dry ice to the packaging to ensure your meals stay frozen at no additional cost to you.

deliveryOnce your meals have been packaged, we then turn them over to our preferred shipping company, FedEx.  Why should you care about this?  Well, because we ship so many prepared meals across the country and do so exclusively with FedEx, they give us a bulk shipping discount (kind of like when you buy a bunch of stuff at a big box store…the more you buy the more you save).  We then pass on that discounted shipping rate to you.  Simply stated, we charge you what FedEx charges us.

So if you’ve ever wondered how we derive our shipping costs, it’s simply determined by what FedEx charges us based on the weight of the dry ice and prepared meals in your package and how far your package must be shipped to arrive at your door.  Now you know the little secret behind the logistics of shipping in the prepared meals delivered business.

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15 Foods for Healthy Kidneys

kidneyHey…HEY!  It’s us, your hard-working kidneys and yeah, we know it’s been a while since we talked…like in forever, but we thought it was time to give you some advice about what types of food to eat in order to keep us filtering out the trash you put into our body (it ain’t just your body, you know).

It’s not easy processing 50 gallons of blood (yes, 50!) and filtering out 2 quarts of waste and extra water on a daily basis…we then send that waste to your bladder on its way to the great beyond.  As your body’s filtration system, we also help regulate the levels of sodium, phosphorus and potassium levels in your blood, so yeah, we’re fairly important internal organs that are often forgotten about…hence this little chat.

Yeah, we’re forgotten about until we begin to malfunction.  Yes, diabetes and high blood pressure can cause us serious problems, but many times our renal functions are compromised in a silent and slow process that eventually leads to chronic kidney disease which, often times, can be prevented by eating a balanced and healthy diet.  Ooops, almost forgot an important fact…chronic kidney disease can’t be cured once it’s taken hold.  You can only hope to prolong our “lives” as long as possible through treatment and diet.  Yeah, we suppose, God forbid, a kidney transplant is an option, but we’d both like to stay right where we’re at, thank you very much.

So where were we? …Oh yeah, kidney friendly foods out there that can prevent and/or treat kidney disease.  It’s all about self-preservation you know.  These foods generally contain moderate levels of protein and potassium, low levels of sodium, cholesterol, and fat and high levels of vitamins, antioxidants and anti-inflammatories…yes, you guessed correctly, mostly fresh fruits and vegetables…you don’t need a PhD in nutrition to figure this stuff out!

  1. red-pepper-happyRed Bell Peppers – chock full ‘o vitamins A, C, and B6 and the antioxidant lycopene with low levels of potassium…heart healthy too.cauliflower-happy
  2. Garlic – contains anti-inflammatories and antioxidant qualities…just remember to follow it up with a mint…just sayin’.
  3. onion-winkOnions – wait, garlic AND onions…keep your distance.  Low in potassium, full of flavonoids, the antioxidant quercetin and chromium…cry us a river as you peel, but get us some onions!
  4. Apples – keep the doc away by eating these spheres of goodness that contain fiber, anti-inflammatories and which help reduce cholesterol.
  5. Through 9.  Berries – Think cran, blue, ras, and straw…most contain a ton of vitamin C, manganese, antioxidants, fiber and cranberries help prevent urinary tract infections.

10.cherries Cherries – are not the pits, they just contain them as well as phytochemicals which help
       reduce inflammation and antioxidants.
11. Egg Whites – OK, so get an egg separator already, but put in the work to get the amino acids and moderate amount of protein without the cholesterol and phosphorous
present in the yolks.
12. fish-cartoonFish – another good source of protein along with omega 3 fatty acids and fish is known
       to reduce LDL levels (the bad cholesterol) and raise HDL levels.
13. Kale – has become so popular that it’s now used as a name.  It’s also contains our good
       friends vitamin A and C, as well as iron and anti-inflammatories.
14. Olive Oil – think of Popeye’s board-like love interest as you cook with this healthy oil
       that contains oleic acid and polyphenols.
15.mushroom-30 Mushrooms – funny, we remember overhearing numerous men claim they were often
       treated like mushrooms by their significant other…kept in the dark and fed a lot of…
shall we say solid human waste product.  Anyway, they’re low in fat, calories, and
cholesterol and provide us with vitamin D, selenium and just the right amount of
potassium. 

So, to recap, just remember to eat some of these foods on a daily basis and we’ll provide you with our valuable filtration services for years to come…nice talk.

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The Way Food Used to Look

This is going to amaze you. The vegetables and fruits we know today are vastly different from what they began as.

banana-before

OK, three guesses, what is this?

A. Squash
B. Banana
C. Some kind of starchy vegetable

If you guessed B. banana,  you were right! There were two types of this banana with hard seeds in Southeast Asia, about 7000 years ago. Someone made a hybrid, and our delicious, soft, sweet banana is what eventually came of it.

What about this tasty-looking item?carrot-before2 Those are early carrots.  Carrots started their life in and around Afghanistan. The early ones were purple or white, and they didn’t become orange until at least the 15th century.

wild-cornHere’s wild corn, before it was domesticated.  European settlers started the domestication process in the 1400s.

Eggplant1Eggplant, anyone?? Wild eggplant had a lot more seeds than our modern variety.  It wouldn’t make a very good eggplant parmigiana.

Here are some other foods you may not recognize. These are what certain foods look like when grown, before they reach the market. This is the way they look today, not in yesteryear.

cashewCashews grow from the bottom of these “cashew apples”, which are not edible but can be made into a stringent juice.

cacaoCocoa pods eventually turn into your favorite chocolate bar, but cocoa starts out looking like this.

cinnamontreeThe bark of this tree turns into everyone’s favorite spice, cinnamon!

And finally… the chickpea! These are green when raw, and perfectly edible. A little prettier than those you get in a can, wouldn’t you say?

chickpea-plantMelody, MagicKitchen.com blogger

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