Category Archives: Health Tips

The Nutritious Green Apple

The Good Old Saying, “An Apple a Day Keeps the Doctor Away”

an-apple-GREEN

This saying cannot be wrong, as you will see how nutritious apples are. However, the most nutritious of apples is the green apple and not the red variety. This is why most westerners consume one green apple a day and drink the juice of green apples, san sugar.

The green apple is rich in dietary fibre. Dietary fibre helps in digestion and also helps control gastritis. Western doctors are of the view that one could never suffer from Colon Cancer, if green apples are consumed daily.

Today lots of people suffer from constipation. This occurs when your intake of dietary fibre is less. It is advised that constipation can be overcome with the intake of a green apple a day. With acute constipation comes the passing of blood, which in turn paves the way for Colon Cancer.

Latest medical reports say that those with high blood pressure should add to their food intake, green apples.

Green apples also contain a certain amount of carbohydrates, which boost energy levels. Green apples are good for patients who are recuperating after surgery or major illnesses.

Green apples are also a rich source of vitamins containing Vitamins A, B and C and also Calcium, Iron, Magnesium and Potassium.

Another trio of diseases doing its rounds is Cholesterol, Diabetes and High Blood Pressure, which in turn affect the liver. For those was have these diseases, green apples are a blessing.

Apart from the nutritious fact of green apples, there is also a “Beauty” secret and that is if those who consume green apples on a daily basis have their skin flawless and sparkling, you can rest assured that they consume a green apple a day! This is because of the Vitamins A, B and C which are embedded in the green apple and in return which are good for the skin. Karen Behnke of California bountiful, a Skin Care Company, says, “Most people are astounded to learn that the skin absorbs over 60% of what is placed on it.” After a person reaches 30 years, the skin slowly starts its journey up the “wrinkling” stage. Karen says that green apple treatment is indeed good for the skin and keeps wrinkles at bay. She further goes on the say that one green apple, 10 green grapes, one teaspoon of lime juice, with a helping of Aloe gel made into a paste and applied on the face and neck, helps give your skin a natural sparkle. This paste should be kept on for 20 minutes and then washed away with warm water.

So the next time you draw up your grocery list, do not forget to add a generous number of green apples.

 

 

 

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A Sprained Ankle Can Cause Discomfort and Pain

Sprained-Ankle

Many of us at sometime or other would have experienced a sprained ankle or even a pulled muscle. However, it is a sprained ankle that puts a person out of gear, as the pain is unbearable and walking is difficult, as the entire weight of your body rests on your ankles.

There is no western medicine, other than painkillers that could bring relief to a sprained ankle. However, there are spices that could cure a sprained ankle and also ease the pain.

1. TURMERIC

Turmeric has anti-inflammatory properties and is an excellent pain reliever. Further, due to its anti-spasmodic properties, relaxes the muscles, tissues, joints and helps reduce swelling and pain.

Mix 2 tablespoons of turmeric powder, one tablespoon lime juice and a bit of warm water to turn out a thick paste. Apply this paste on to the ankle and bandage it. Leave this on for 10 hours. Repeat every 10 hours, for a week.
2. GARLIC

Garlic plays an important role in reducing pain in a sprained ankle. Here again just like turmeric, due to its anti-inflammatory properties, it helps reduce pain as well as inflammation. Another factor is that its healing properties and its ability to increase body strength and energy helps speed up the healing process.

Mix one tablespoon of garlic juice and two tablespoons of warn coconut oil. Gently apply this solution on the affected area. Leave it for half an hour and wash the area with lukewarm water. Continue this remedy three or four times a day for several days, until the ankle heals completely.

The Disadvantages of Fast Food

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Today fast-food outlets are mushrooming all around Colombo and its suburbs. The flavours, colouring and preservatives used in fast-food, dish out an unhealthy range of food that are consumed by adults as well as children. Really children are more susceptible to the poisons that are hidden in fast-food. The level of nutrition and cleanliness in preparation of food nowadays has reached zero levels.

Fast-foods have always been labeled to cause a variety of health problems. Ingredients that have a high level of sugar or fat are not meant to be eaten regularly. The most high risk diseases such as cancer, diabetes and heart diseases are caused by ingredients that are not fit for consumption.

Fast – foods contain more calories. The biggest contributors to junk food are the “Burgher” specialists of the snacking culture. Children have got addicted to these and its alarming to see the number of kids who throng these fast-food outlets.

The main ingredients in fast-food are cheese, mayo, salt and soya. Are these four ingredients sourced from reputed sellers or do they fall into the “sweepings” category? This is something we will never know. The deep frying, dishes out a vast amount of calories, sans nutrition. Liver damage is the next significant risk of consuming fast-food. Today cholesterol in humans is equal to a common chest cold. Consuming fast-food, which has a high content of fat, adds to the risk of clogged arteries, which result in cardiovascular diseases, which in turn increases the risk of heart attacks and strokes.

If one thinks that fast-food saves money and time, that thought is absolutely foolish, as the money and time spent to cure diseases such as cancer, diabetes and valve blockages to the heart and strokes are twofold.

If one sits back and contemplates a home cooked meal for the family, the thought of it alone soothes the mind and frees it from unnecessary fear. So the next time you think of “fast food”, be “fast” enough to dispel it from your mind and you will bask in a pool of healthiness that would give you an extra lease in life.

Health Remedies from Your Own Spice Rack – Part 1

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When we sit back and wonder how our ancestors curbed diseases and illnesses, when modern medicine was not heard of, automatically our thoughts reach out the herbal remedies which they practiced. Today, if your kid sneezes three times in a row, you rush him to the nearest medical centre and he is prescribed a series of medicinal drugs and a volley of tests to be done.  But do you know that for the mildest of illnesses such as indigestion, cough and cold, your own spice rack in your kitchen give you healthy remedies?

We bring you today, the fist in its series of Health Remedies from Your Own Spice Rack, which we no doubt think would help you immensely.

 

  1. Fennel Seeds

Nothing can be as embarrassing as bad breath. Supermarket racks are full of expensive mouth washes, that clear your breath, but at a price. Look no further than your spice and herb rack in your very own kitchen and you will find your answer there in the form of Fennel Seeds. All you got to do is much on about 7 fennel seeds and swallow them.  You will find your breathe clearing due to fennel seeds helping in digestion and deodorizing of the digestive track.

 

  1. Garlic Powder

A busy housewife does get herself injured with scrapes. In an instance like this, dissolve a teaspoon of garlic powder in water to form a paste and apply on the affected area.

 

  1. Cough and Sore Throat

A “Pepper Tea Recipe”. Have you heard of it? Well if you haven’t, the next time you start coughing and your throat feels sore, add a teaspoon of black pepper in a teacup of hot water, cover for 10 minutes, add 1 tablespoon of honey and drink it. Pepper and honey acting as a decongestant and antibiotic respectively, brings relief to the throat.

 

  1. Cinnamon

Cinnamon powder mixed with almond or coconut milk and simmered on a low flame, helps combat indigestion, diarrhea and flatulence. It also helps in reducing bad cholesterol when taken mixed with bee’s honey.

Health Benefits of Spices

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In the initial days of trading, Sri Lanka was known as a “Spice Island”

What prompted us to touch on the subject of health benefits of spices, was an article in the Sunday times of 18th November 2012, titled “The Dye is cast on the Fabric of Taste”, which is frightening to say the least.

Today most people have pushed the use of preparation of meals at home, thus pushing away the use of spices to take a back seat. This phenomenon is due to the birth of a vast number of fast-food outlets and wayside mobile outlets that sell all types of cooked food. If we stop to think, how these foods are prepared, under what conditions and the quality of spices used, our findings would surely be “distasteful”, with the use of sub-standard and non-edible food colouring used in the preparations.

At Lanka Spice, all our products are carefully chosen, with the support of a well equipped laboratory facility.

Spices have gone hand in hand with the long history of cultural heritage, its use in foods to enhance taste and its health benefits. Spices can be used to totally or to a degree replace less desirable ingredients such as salt, sugar and added saturated fat in, marinades and dressings, stir-fry dishes, casseroles, soups and curries.

Today one should change dietary habits, by pushing away curry sauces towards the old gentle mélange of spices.

Spices that reduce Bad Cholesterol

Cholesterol is a problem that is faced by many people today. One form of Cholesterol is derived from the food we eat, thus increasing the risk of heart disease and stroke. Spices such as Cinnamon, Turmeric and Ginger are those that help reduce levels of Bad Cholesterol.

Cinnamon

Cinnamon has been used in a vast number of cultures for different medical problems. Today Cinnamon still plays a vital role in many health claims from treating diabetes to cancer.

According to Reader’s Digest., a Pakistani study found that 1/2 tsp. of cinnamon daily can reduce bad cholesterol in people with type 2 diabetes by nearly 30 percent and cut total cholesterol by 26 percent.

Powdered cinnamon could be used in baking or as a flavouring to cooking. A little cinnamon sprinkled on toasts, desserts, fruits, or drinks like coffee or hot cocoa makes your item of food or drink taste better.

Furthermore, cinnamon also helps treat diabetes. At times cinnamon is found in capsule form which works wonder with the lowering of diabetes and cholesterol.

A remedy which I personally use is 1 tsp of cinnamon powder mixed with 1 tsp of honey and stirred into one cup of herbal tea, does wonders with your cholesterol, you will feel the difference after two or three cups of this herbal tea.

Turmeric

When considering cholesterol lowering foods, don’t forget the health benefits of turmeric.

Turmeric comes from the root of the Curcuma longa plant and the flesh is a bright orange color. Turmeric is used to flavor curries, especially vegetable curries (or white curries). Turmeric is not just a culinary spice, turmeric possesses many health benefits due to its anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. Early studies have revealed that turmeric can lower bad cholesterol and total cholesterol in the body. Turmeric’s active ingredient, curcumin, acts as a messaging molecule, directing genes in the liver to increase production of messenger proteins to rid the body of bad cholesterol. Although turmeric is currently most notable for its antioxidant, anticancer and anti-inflammatory properties, there has been recent talk about its ability to lower cholesterol.

It is better to obtain the pure form of turmeric to enjoy the highest levels of curcumin. Use curcumin to flavor curries, lentil soup, stir-fry, and as a seasoning for meat and fish.
Ginger

Ginger delivers more than flavor to food, desserts and drinks. Initial studies showed that ginger may lower cholesterol levels and prevent blood from clotting. Spice up your food with grated ginger or steep slices of ginger in boiling water for a refreshing ginger drink. Ginger adds fresh flavor to stir-fry, soups, marinades and sauces.

The list of spices that have medicinal values are extensive and this is just a glance at how you can stay healthy.

Stay tuned to our Blog for more Articles that would safeguard your health !!

Meal Planning Made Simple

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A dilemma that a housewife faces today is the drawing up of menus for breakfast, lunch and dinner. It is a common fact in a family that if there are four persons in that family, their choice of food defer drastically. If one eats chicken two do not eat it and they prefer beef. Hence the housewife sits with her head in her hands finding ways and means of fighting this deli mina.

It is indeed mind boggling when you sit to plan your menus. Three meals a day,  21 meals a week and 1,092 meals a year sends your head spinning.  This is where menu planning comes in handy.  If you plan your menu ahead, you are more likely to stay within your budget and you may find ways and means to use what you have in hand, in your refrigerator and pantry cupboards.

With today’s rising cost of living, home budgets creak and groan when they are to be stretched.  Using up food that is available is the best way to stretch your funds.

In essence there are three menu planning methods that work pretty well when you are on a tight budget.  Meals are eaten whether you plan it or not, as it is an essential ingredient for sustenance. By taking the time off to think things through we could come up with low cot meals.

There are three Menu Planning Methods:-

1.    The previous night planning method –  this is the most easiest method. You will have leftovers that could be turned into a palatable dish. You could refrigerate it and then use in on the menu for breakfast the following day or even lunch.

2.    The weekly planning method – this method too gives you a breather and does not pull at the strings of your budget.  All you got to do is draw up your menu for the week and then look at what you would need. Before rushing off to the supermarket or grocery, check in the refrigerator and pantry cupboards whether you have any of the stuff you have written down that you require to purchase. If you do, strike it off the list. This way you save money and your budget relaxes with a  sigh.

3.    The rotating menu – Most households today adopt this style of a rotating menu, All you got to do is plan about 10 complete menus and then rotate them, serving a different one every day. This would help the choosy one in your family, Preparing them in batches and freezing them is a good idea, but remember that you need to have a well appointed freezer for this, as food may get contaminated if your freezer does not work properly.

Okay now we are ready to draw up our menus.  The first step is to list out what your family likes to eat.  You can categorize them as follows:-

•    Main dishes (curries etc)
•    Rices, Pasta, Sphagetti, Roti, String hoppers, Hoppers
•    Vegetables, Salads
•    Breads
•    Deserts

You can sub-divide the Main dishes into Chicken, Beef, Fish, Seafood etc. Do not at any time add two or three new dishes to your menus, as your family might not take nicely to one or may be all of them. Introduce one new dish per menu and see how it goes.

You will no doubt agree that visiting a supermarket or grocery without a proper list of what you require is a disaster waiting to happen.  Even with a list at times the housewife faces numerous problems. Whether you shop for a day’s groceries or a week’s groceries the process is the same.
Attached is a simple menu that you could follow and you would see how you could stay within your budget as well.

Meal-plan-time-table

Happy Menu Planning from Mc Currie

Home Remedies from Spices

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Nutmeg and Mace

Nutmeg and Mace are plant products and of the same plant. Nutmeg is the seed and mace is the outer covering. This spice is expensive, but has many medicinal benefits. It is an amazing ayurvedic home remedy that can cure many physical and psychological ailments. Nutmeg is by appearance roughly egg shaped and has a rough shell, while Mace is the dried lacy reddish covering of the nutmeg.

Nutmeg assists in digestion and relieves nausea, vomiting, flatulence and diarrhea. Powdered nutmeg mixed with honey can be taken to cure diarrhea. Even children could be subject to this remedy. However, pregnant mothers should avoid this, as it may have harmful effects like miscarriage.

Insomnia

Nutmeg fruit paste made out of nutmeg powder processed with ghee and applied on the forehead induces restful sleep.

Menstrual Cramping

Nutmeg powder consumed with a little bee’s honey recued menstrual cramping.

Asthma

Mace is an excellent medicine to alleviate attacks of Asthma. Mace powder is administered in a dosage of 1 gm with honey 4-5 times a day.

Acne

Acne is something that most people face, especially females. Symptoms of acne are clogged pores, pimples and blackheads, which occur when your skin produced too much oil. When this oil comes in contact with dead skin cells, your skin becomes inflamed and blemishes are more likely to erupt. The University of Maryland, Medical Centre notes that acne is the most common skin problem, affecting 17 to 45 million in the USA alone. If you are one of them in the rest of the world, a home remedy may be effective at helping you clear your skin.

Nutmeg, Milk and Honey

Nutmeg’s mace has antifungal and antibacterial capabilities. According to Reader’s Digest Notes, honey helps kiss bacteria and may also promote wound healing. Honey may not only encourage your acne sore to heal fast, but also helps prevent future outbreaks. Compounds in milk are likely to have similar healing effects.

Preparation method of Nutmeg, Milk and Honey Paste

Mix honey, nutmeg powder and milk in a bowl. Use less milk and more honey and nutmeg, until it forms a thick consistency. Mix well. Apply a thick layer of the paste over the area affected by acne. Sandi Burner, Author of “Beauty and the Budget” suggests leaving nutmeg, milk and honey paste on your skin overnight before carefully rinsing it off. Powdered milk may also be used and would be easier to make a paste out of.

Note: If your skin becomes red or uncomfortable from any version of the above paste, discontinue use.

Note: Nutmeg can be very toxic. Use only the recommended medical amount and always consult a licensed medical practitioner before using nutmeg.

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