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eat smart: The 6 Safest Fish

eat smart
  1. Wild (or Farmed) Trout. The safest, most sustainable trout comes from US farms or wild from the Great Lakes.

  2. Wild Alaskan Salmon (or Farmed Arctic Char).Both options are low in toxins, sustainable, and nearly identical in taste and texture.

  3. Farmed Scallops. Choose "dry" scallops farmed in the US, Canada, Brazil, Ecuador, or Norway for the least toxins.

  4. Farmed Tilapia. Look for fillets from the US, Canada, Peru, or Ecuador.

  5. Wild Mackerel. This omega-3-packed, rich-tasting fish is low in toxins when from the Alaskan Pacific, Atlantic, or Gulf of Mexico.

  6. US Wild (or Farmed) Shrimp. Farmed US shrimp are rare but safest, though wild-caught shrimp from Alaska and the Gulf Coast are often just as good.
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eat smart: Got Milk?

eat smart

Many Americans have milk in their refrigerator, but what types of milk are they drinking? There are different types of dairy milk to fit every age and lifestyle—whether it’s organic, flavored or lactose-free, there are a variety of fat and calorie levels to choose from. The primary options available are whole milk (3.25 percent), reduced-fat milk (2 percent), lowfat milk (1 percent) and fat free milk (less than 0.2 percent). These percentages, which tell how much milk fat is in the milk by weight, are indicated on the label and designated by different cap and label colors. Every variety of dairy milk, whether lowfat or fat free, contains nine essential nutrients, including eight grams of high-quality protein per cup. Make sure you’ve got milk today!

Whole milk. Whole milk contains 150 calories with eight grams of fat per 8-ounce glass and is actually 3.25 percent milkfat by weight, which is not as much as many people think.

Reduced-fat milk. Reduced-fat milk, or two percent milk, contains 120 calories and five grams of fat, and has the same nine essential nutrients as every other type of dairy milk. The percentage does not mean that the glass of milk contains two percent fat, but that the milkfat is two percent of the total weight of the milk.

Lowfat milk. Similar to reduced-fat milk, lowfat milk has one percent milkfat of the total weight of the milk. It contains 100 calories and 2.5 grams of fat in an 8-ounce glass.

Fat free milk. If you want to get the same nutrients as whole milk while cutting calories and fat, then fat free milk is a good choice. The fat is skimmed, leaving zero grams of fat and about 80 calories per cup. Many people believe that fat free milk is just watered down whole milk, but that is not the case—no water is added and all nine essential nutrients remain intact in every glass.

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eat smart: Flower Power

eat smart

Cauliflower has been showing up more and more lately and you might wonder why. Packed full of many of the vitamins broccoli offers plus anti-inflammatory properties, cauliflower deserves superfood status. It's also widely available in a range of pretty and vitamin-intense shades of purple, orange, and green.

Orange cauliflowers get their color from beta carotene, a high source of vitamin A which gives them roughly 25 times more vitamin A than the white variety. The deep purple color of purple cauliflower comes from anthocyanins, the antioxidant that gives the purple color to the skins of grapes, plums, and eggplants.

For something different, try roasting which brings out a sweetness that transforms cauliflower so completely it very well may become your new favorite veggie!

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eat smart: Shades of Sweet.

Eat Smart

Not too long ago the only thing you needed to know was the difference between a sweet potato and a yam. Now a surprising variety of sweet potatoes are being grown in the United States. Check out the range of colors, textures, and flavors to plan the best menus.

Garnet
  • Red skin, orange flesh
  • Sweet, squash-like
Tastes best: In casseroles, cooked in salads or baked
Hannah
  • White skin, white flesh; becomes yellow when baked
  • Fairly sweet
Tastes best: Baked whole or mashed
Japanese
  • Red skin, white flesh; golden when baked
  • Very sweet
Tastes best: Raw in salads
Jewel, Covington, Beauregard
  • Orange throughout
  • Sweet, buttery
Tastes best: In casseroles, raw in salads or baked
Purple Stokes
  • Purple throughout
  • Less sweet
Tastes best: roasted
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eat smart: Food Gone Bad? Maybe not.

eat smart

Confusion over date labeling leads to food waste every year. The sniff and taste test are not reliable methods to determine if food is safe to eat. Decode the "sell by", "best by", and "use by" to find out if it is safe to use those eggs for breakfast in the morning.

SELL BY. This is the date for retailers to remove the item from shelves. Typically this date is two-thirds of the way through its shelf life, so there's plenty of time for you to use it.

BEST BY. The date that product quality starts declining, though the food might still be safe to eat.

USE BY. The date when the product quality begins decreasing at a rapid pace and safety could be a concern. In other words, do not eat beyond this point.

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eat smart: The Quirky Yogurt Alternative

eat smart

Have you had a chance to try Quark, the Greek yogurt and cottage cheese crossover from Europe? It has the priobiotics found in Greek yogurt but not the lactic acid giving you a milder, less acidic taste. It is creamy in texture, a rich source of protein, high in calcium for strong bones and teeth, Vitamin A, and B vitamins. It has less salt than cream cheese, and more protein than Greek yogurt.

Use it as a substitute for sour cream in cheesecakes, dips, and sauces or mix with fresh herbs for a delicious baked potato topping. It also makes a delicious snack with nuts, seeds, and fruit.

Elli Quark is available in the U.S. and their pinterest board offers different recipes to try. Visit them at ElliQuark.com.

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eat smart: Matcha

eat smart

Meet the new green craze: whole-leaf green tea that has been finely ground into a powder called Matcha. It offers a deeper flavor than brewed tea and many more of the antioxidants believed to ward off cancer, lower blood pressure, and increase brain power. It is versatile and can be added to a variety of foods and drinks for exciting, new, healthy recipes!

Tip. Adding matcha to boiling water will create a “grassy” taste. Instead, boil the water and let it sit for five minutes before adding the tea.

A new café favorite. Matcha pairs with milk to make a delicious latte! Blend one teaspoon of matcha into 2 oz. of hot water. Once dissolved, add to a mug filled with steamed milk. Top it off with a sprinkle of matcha.

A frozen treat. Mix 1 tablespoon of matcha powder with a pint of vanilla ice cream. Serve immediately or cover and freeze until ready to serve.

A delicious dessert. Add one tablespoon matcha powder to a boxed yellow or white cake or cookie mix and bake according to the package directions.

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eat smart: Start Your Day With Oatmeal

eat smart

If you don’t already start the morning with a bowl of oatmeal, you may want to reconsider your morning routine. Not only is it inexpensive and versatile, it’s also full of several health benefits.

Low calorie food. A cup is only 130 calories.

Beta-glucan. Removes your bad cholesterol without affecting your good cholesterol.

Gluten-free. While oatmeal itself is gluten-free, contamination can occur in wheat field or processing facilities.

Lignans. Protect against heart disease and cancer.

Antioxidants. A study at Tufts University found that avenanthramides, unique antioxidants in oatmeal, help prevent free radicals from damaging LDL cholesterol. This reduces the risk of heart disease.

Fiber. Leaves you with a satisfied, full feeling for longer.

Whole Grain. Eating whole grains can lower your risk for several diseases, including high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes.

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eat smart: Safe Eating

eat smart

Picnics, beach parties, and outdoor potlucks all lead to summertime fun with friends and family. But with the hot temps come the risk of illness from spoiled foods. The US Department of Agriculture recommends the following tips for summertime food safety:

  • In moderately warm temps, food should not sit out for more than 2 hours. In extreme heat—above 90˚F—discard food that has been sitting out for 1 hour.
  • Pack perishable foods from the refrigerator or freezer in a cooler lined with ice packs. A full cooler will retain its temperature better than a half-filled cooler, so pack it to the top.
  • Consider packing foods in a separate cooler from drinks, which will most likely be opened more frequently, allowing the cold to escape.
  • Keep raw meats and poultry wrapped in plastic bags and away from cooked foods or foods that will be eaten raw, such as fruits. Partially freezing meats before packing in the cooler will keep them colder longer.
  • Bring along hand sanitizer or sanitizing wipes to clean hands, utensils, and platters before and after handling any type of raw meat.
  • Avoid leftovers by limiting the amount of perishable foods to what will be eaten during your outing. Do not save or reheat leftovers that have been exposed to high temperatures.
  • Keep your coolers in a shady location, out of direct sunlight. Cover it with light colored tarp or blanket to reflect the heat. If you're at a sandy beach, bury it in the sand to keep it cool.
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eat smart: Holidays

eat smart

Festive dinners, office parties, and other holiday gatherings make this the season of excess and indulgence. If you are careful, you can navigate the celebration circuit with smart choices at each step and keep off those unwanted pounds.

THE APPETIZER. Lean protein is the gold standard of party food because it fills you up without many calories. One shrimp has just 7 calories and about 1 gram of protein and is usually served with fat free cocktail sauce.

THE DRINK. In addition to providing polyphenols, red wine also may be good for your diet. One study found that wine drinkers had smaller waists than beer or spirits drinkers.

THE SIDE. Scan a dinner buffet for carrots, which contain plenty of antioxidants and rarely come drenched in cream or butter. Roasted, steamed, or lightly glazed carrots are always good options.

THE DESSERT. When it comes to selecting a cookie, choose an airy meringue, made with egg whites. Each one has about 25 calories (120 fewer than most cookies) and some flavors are naturally fat-free.

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