Monday, May 31, 2010

Indianapolis 500 Race and Lemonade Popsicles

A Memorial Day treat for the kids:

Today is one of those perfect California days. The weather has been touch and go for a few weeks with rain and 60 degree weather, but as we approach Memorial Day, summer seems to be arriving. While you are watching the Indianapolis 500 Race today, a great activity for your kids could be making some fresh homemade lemonade and popsicles so they can go outside and play and have a cool treat while you are inside watching the race.

Here is our recipe for Raspberry Lemonade and Lemonade Popsicles:

7 medium lemons
simple syrup
1 pint of raspberries

Juice the 7 lemons and put the juice in a pitcher.
Make simple syrup by using 1 cup of sugar and adding 2 cups of water and boiling it until it becomes a thick sugar syrup.
Take a pint of raspberries and crush into the lemon juice and add the simple syrup.
Add water until the pitcher is 3/4 full and add some ice to cool the lemonade.

The lemonade will turn a pinkish color. Serve in glasses with garnish of mint and small wedges of lemon or raspberries.

For the lemonade popsicles, simple pour some lemonade into ice trays and freeze or into some lemonade molds. We used these rocket lemonade molds we bought in Sonoma a few years ago.

Happy Memorial Day Everyone.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

50 Cent Weight Loss Photos and his diet plan

Rapper 50 Cent revealed on his website today photos of his new look after he lost 54 pounds in a 9 week liquid crash diet. His photos are shocking compared to his normally healthy muscular build. He explains that he lost the weight to play an NFL Football player dying of cancer in his next movie role. He is under the supervision of his trainer to make sure his diet is still nutritionally sound.

There have been lots of talk about liquid diets lately. Liquid diets have been around for a long time. Some people do liquid cleanse diets and others do liquid protein shake diets. Many of these diets are very effective for losing weight, however they tend to only serve as a temporary weight loss for most people. Because liquid diets are usually very low in calories, people pack the pounds back on as soon as they start eating their meals of protein, vegetables, and carbohydrates again.

Although many celebrities have been known to do their yearly or monthly liquid cleanse diets to lose a few pounds, this type of diet is not recommended for most people. During the period when you are drastically reducing your calorie intake through these liquid diets your body and organs are put under a lot of stress. Liquid diets do not tend to have all the nutrients your body needs to be healthy. When your body does not get all the nutrients it needs from these liquid diets hair can start thinning, heart damage can occur, fatigue can set in.

Most people who want to lose weight are usually recommended a diet and exercise plan with a lower calorie balanced menu. When dieters lost weight gradually through the practice of eating smaller portions and incorporating exercise in their daily routine, the weight came off and stayed off.

To keep weight off after a diet, a healthy eating plan and regular exercise program has to be a part of your daily routine. Otherwise, weight that is loss will eventually return.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Dancing With The Stars Exercise or Not ?

Did you watch the Dancing with the Stars Season Finale last night? Wasn't it obvious that Nicole Scherzinger was going to win the competition with Derek Hough? She was a trained dancer and professional singer, so she has had much more practice time than any one of the other contestants. She deserved to win, she was the best dancer in this competition.

Since summer is quickly approaching, have you been trying to get in shape for bikini and swim suit weather? Are you tired of your gym routine? Do you want to do something more interesting? While watching Dancing with the Stars this season I noticed that the competitors were getting more and more fit as the weeks went on. I always knew that dancing was hard work, but I had no idea it was such an amazing sculpting and toning exercise. While dancing every muscle group is engaged when you hold poses and move around. Also, your ab muscles and core are usually engaged and your legs and arms are constantly moving. It is a very physical exercise.

In the last few years, my parents started taking Arthur Murray dance classes and started competing in dance competitions. Not only are they happy when they are dancing because it is such a social activity, my mom has lost a lot of weight as well. Dancing has become a great fun activity as well as exercise for my parents.

Many people may think that ballroom dancing and ballet is not for them so they don't try dancing as a form of exercise. However, there are so many different dance classes out there, you can definitely find one that could work for your lifestyle and taste. For example, there are dance classes offered in the modern dance style, jazz, tap, hip hop, and many other varieties. The great thing about dance is that it is a pretty inexpensive activity and classes can be found everywhere from your local gym, the YMCA, to a professional dance studio.

Try something new for the summer. Dance!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Polyvore Megafruit Giveaway Contest

Here is a brand new contest for our Megafruit Twitter and Facebook Followers. Go to and create your own set and include your favorite flavor of Megafruit from We will pick the best set and reward the winner with a $50 Amex Gift Card. Contest ends June 24, 2010.

Create your Polyvore set with Megafruit and leave a comment on this post with the link to your set. Have fun. Here is a set we created.

Balenciaga and turquoise shoes on a sunny dayFashion Trends & Styles - Polyvore

Monday, May 24, 2010

Curry Butternut Squash Apple Soup Recipe for Summer

Summer is the time of year when we think about eating healthier and exercising more to get ready for the beach and vacations. There are ways to eat healthier while taking advantage of the summer vegetables that are available at markets and farmers markets during this time of year. Soup is an easy way to get lots of healthy nutrients and to fill up while not consuming too many calories. Soups are great to eat as a snack or as a light dinner when you just don't want to eat very much. Soups can be made in large batches and frozen in small containers to be reheated when you want a quick meal. Put your soup into little cups to make it look fun and festive.

Here is a recipe I got from my mother in law recently that is tasty and easy to make:

4 Tbls unsalted butter
2 cups chopped yellow onions
4 Tbls curry powder
2 medium butternut squash - 3 pounds
2 apples - peeled, cored, and chopped
1 shredded granny smith apple for garnish on top of soup
3 cups vegetable stock
1 cup apple sauce
salt and pepper to taste

1.) Melt butter, add onions and curry. Cook over low heat until onions are opaque.
2.) Peel squash, scrape seeds and chop.
3.) Pour stock into pan of onions. Add squash and apples. Boil, then simmer covered until squash and apples are very tender. (25 minutes)
4.) Food process until smooth
5.) Add apple juice.
6.) Season to taste.

(Photo credit: Anson Smart for Country Living Magazine.)

Friday, May 21, 2010

Lance Armstrong food for training

What does a champion cyclist like Lance Armstrong eat to stay in shape and get an optimum performance? Like a runner, cyclists need to eat foods that give them energy and endurance. They also have to change their foods throughout the training period based on their training schedule.

Lance Armstrong has been training with Chris Carmichael since 1990. Carmichael is a former cyclist who created the Carmichael Training System to help cyclists like Lance Armstrong eat the right foods for their best performance on the bike. The type of program Carmichael developed is called Periodization.
"Carbohydrates, proteins, and fats are tied together and linked to how you perform," says Carmichael. On top of eating more calories as your training intensifies, the ratio of carbohydrates to fats to proteins in your diet needs to change as well. "If you are training for a half-marathon, for example, you need a greater percentage of carbohydrates in your diet than if you're just running for fitness," he explains. Like Lance Armstrong, when you're at the peak of your training, it's important to increase the percentage of carbs in your diet from about 60 to 70 percent to ensure you're giving your body enough fuel to enhance your workouts.

When looking at this guide - I substituted Megafruit baby pineapple, lychee, and mangosteen in place of the fruits. Megafruit is made up of healthy carbohydrates that are free of sulfites and sugar. It is an all natural alternative to other carbohydrates. Check us out on

Here is a Periodization For Idiots guide from Chris Carmichael from the Eat Like A Champion article written by Kristen Wolfe Bieler from the August 2004 issue of Runner's World.

How do you apply the principles of periodization to your diet without complex nutrient calculations? Remember that the concept of eating more carbs during your heaviest training is more important than trying to adhere to specific numbers.

But when you're upping the miles, adding just one of these mini meals per day gives you the extra carbs you need to keep running strong.

1 cup vanilla yogurt + 1 cup fresh fruit (60 grams carbs)
Bonus Benefit: provides over 40 percent of your daily calcium needs

1 cup orange juice + 1 banana (52 grams carbs)
Bonus Benefit: packs almost 200 percent of the Daily Value for vitamin C

1 slice banana nut bread + 1 cup skim milk (about 45 grams carbs)
Bonus Benefit: gives you 25 percent of the Daily Value for calcium

1 PowerBar energy bar + 8 oz PowerBar Endurance sports drink (62 grams carbs)
Bonus Benefit: provides plenty of sodium and potassium to keep you well hydrated

Smoothie of 2 cups skim or soy milk + 1 1/2 cups strawberries + 2 Tbsp soy
protein (about 50 grams carbs)
Bonus Benefit: contributes about 5 grams of fiber

1 1/2 cups multigrain cereal + 1 1/2 cups skim milk (54 grams carbs)
Bonus Benefit: contains over 100 percent of the Daily Value for iron

1 bagel + 1 banana + 1 Tbsp nut butter (about 75 grams carbs)
Bonus Benefit: provides 12 grams of protein

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Fashionindie Suggests Eating Megafruit to Power Up for Next Sample Sale suggested that their readers should get some Megafruit to power up for their next sample sale. Good idea. Megafruit Mangosteen, Lychee, and Baby Pineapple flavors are full of good carbohydrates, fiber, and antioxidants. Everything you need to have the energy to exercise, go to a sample sale, for the kids on the way to their soccer game after school, or while sitting at your office working all day.

We are available now at

New giveaway info:

Be the first 50 to purchase our product on Amazon and leave a review and you will automatically be entered into our Megafruit gift pack giveaway that includes a $50 Amex gift card. 2 winners will get this prize.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Megafruit Mangosteen sold on Amazon

Megafruit dried superfruits in the flavors of Mangosteen, baby pineapple, and lychee are now available for purchase at

New contest for all of our Facebook and Twitter followers.

First 50 reviews for each product is entered in a contest for a $50 Amex Card. Proof of purchase and review write up is required to be eligible.

Our products are also available at our newest retail outlet:

Vicente Foods location:
12027 San Vicente Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90049

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Healthy benefits of Kambucha ?

Kambucha is a fizzy fermented tea that contains several organic acids, active enzymes, amino acids and polyphenols. Kambucha was first discovered in 19th Century Russia and later became popular in Japan and China. The tea was known during the Qin Dynasty as "a beverage with magical powers enabling people to live forever".[2]

Kambucha has become a very popular drink recently because of the whole health movement that the world has started to embrace again since its decrease after the 1970's. People are really trying to take care of their health and seek out natural remedies to help some of their health problems without relying on pharmaceutical drugs.

Kambucha tastes like a fermented tea with a hint of beer flavor. The benefits some believe Kambucha has included helping people with GI issues alleviate some of their symptoms such as heartburn and acid reflux. Some people believe that Kambucha can aid in digestion. Others believe Kambucha gives them more energy. If you have any of these concerns, check it out for yourself at a local market near you.

Most recently, Kambucha started becoming available in supermarket chains and come in a variety of different flavors. Celebrities like Orlando Bloom have been spotted with the Kambucha drink in that green flavor. There are citrus and fruit flavors available as well.

Here are some scientific claims according to Wikipedia:

Health claims for kombucha focus on a chemical called glucuronic acetate, a compound that is used by the liver for detoxification. The idea that glucuronic acid is present in kombucha is only based on the observation that glucuronic acid conjugates (glucuronic acid + waste chemicals) are increased in the urine after consumption of kombucha.

Early chemical analysis of kombucha brew suggested that glucuronic acid was the key component, and researchers hypothesized that the extra glucuronic acid would assist the liver by supplying more of the substance during detoxification. These analyses were done using gas chromatography to identify the different chemical constituents, but this method relies on having proper chemical standards to match to the unknown chemicals.

A more recent and thorough analysis, outlined in the book in Analysis of Kombucha Ferments[17] suggests a different explanation. Roussin reports on an extensive chemical analysis of a variety of commercial and homebrew versions of kombucha, and finds no evidence of glucuronic acid at all. These scientific measurements contradict the earlier studies and conflict with the original hypothesis. by Michael Roussin

Instead, Roussin discovered that the active component in kombucha is most likely glucaric acid. This compound, also known as D - glucaro -1,4 lactone, helps in the elimination of glucuronic acid conjugates that are produced by the liver. When glucuronic acid conjugates are disposed in the bowel during the elimination process, normal gut bacteria can break up these conjugates using an enzyme called beta-glucuronidase. Glucaric acid is an inhibitor of this bacterial enzyme, so the end result is that the glucuronic acid + waste is properly eliminated the first time, rather than being reabsorbed and detoxified over and over. Thus, glucaric acid probably makes the liver more efficient.

Glucaric acid is commonly found in fruits and vegetables, and is being explored independently as a cancer preventive agent.[18] It has also been discovered that the bacterial beta-glucuronidase enzyme can interfere with proper disposal of a chemotherapeutic agent, and that antibiotics against the gut microbiota can prevent toxicity of some chemotherapy drugs.[19]

Reports of adverse reactions may be related to unsanitary fermentation conditions, leaching of compounds from the fermentation vessels,[20] or "sickly" kombucha cultures that cannot acidify the brew. Cleanliness is important during preparation, and in most cases, the acidity of the fermented drink prevents growth of unwanted contaminants. If a culture becomes contaminated, it will most likely be seen as common mold which is often green, blue or black in color. Often novice brewers will mistake the brownish root filaments on the underside of the culture as a mold contamination when it is seen through the surface of a thinly formed culture.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Healthy Laps reviews Megafruit dried fruits

A few weeks ago, Megafruit sent me samples of their three delicious types of dried fruit: Baby Pineapple, Mangosteen and Lychee.

As you know, I absolutely love dried fruit, especially (and normally only) dried fruit without added sugar so I was psyched to be able to sample these 3 fruits that I had not tried before. I love dried fruit as a snack, as fuel during long runs or bike rides and as dessert. It is easy to take with you on road trips and vacation as well.

According to their website, Megafruit is the new superfruit! These 3 fruits offer an incredible list of vitamins and nutrients and are dried without any preservatives or added sugars. I ate all of the fruit while I was on the go, just by itself.

Let’s get to the fruit!

First, I tried the Baby Pineapple. (my camera liked it so much, that it ate the picture!!)

I never even knew that baby pineapples existed. How cute are they?!


I love unsweetened dried pineapple, so I knew that I would love this as well. I was right! Compared to the normal dried pineapple that I am used to eating, the baby pineapple was smaller.


It is also a little bit sweeter and more tender, but tastes just like mouth-watering fresh pineapple. The pineapple was sweet, but not too sweet. It was a real sweet, not a fake sugary sweet. This was by far my favorite of the 3!

Megafruit’s website gives the following information about the pineapple -

Contains a myriad of beneficial minerals including:

  • Micronutrients may protect against cancer and break up blood clots
  • Bromelins that may block reduces swelling related to arthritis, sore throat, sinusitis
  • Manganese, aiding the healthy growth of tissue and bones
  • Fiber that will help in digestion and stimulate kidneys and aid in flushing toxins from the body, helping you to LIVE LIGHT

Next up, I tried the Lychee.

I have only had lychee a few times, and mainly in a martini, so I didn’t know too much about them. They were originally grown in Southern China, but they have now spread to some US states, such as Hawaii and Florida.


You eat the inside part of the Lychee. The white part is sweet and juicy.


When I dug into the dried lychee, I was expecting something sweet. Boy, was this sweet! Delicious, but super sweet (and again…it was a real sweet, not a sugary sweet). It doesn’t really taste like anything else that I have had. Lychee’s have a very unique flavor.


I would buy this again in a second! It wasn’t a dried fruit that I could eat a whole bag of at once, but a few pieces mixed into some trail mix or with other dried fruit was perfect.

From the Megafruit website:

  • Just 9 lychees or a handful of the fruit meets an adult’s recommended daily requirement of Vitamin C (Contains 72mg per 100 grams)
  • Low in saturated fat, cholesterol and sodium
  • Rich in dietary fiber
  • Good source of other minerals such as copper – for production of red blood cells; potassium – to control heart rate and blood pressure and B- Vitamins – to metabolize carbohydrates, fats and proteins
  • Contains flavonoids which have proven to be effective against the growth of cancer cells

Lastly, the Mangosteen.

I had no idea what to expect from the Mangosteen. I had never even heard of it before, so therefore had never tried it. Apparently mangosteen is not related to a mango. It is known as the world’s best tasting fruit. They are grown in warm climates in Thailand and the surrounding areas, as well as in the Caribbean. The mangosteen is a round, purple fruit slightly smaller than a tennis ball. To eat it, you can crush the brittle yet moist rind with your palms to reveal the pure-white delicacy inside. The bitter rind is inedible, and the fruit comes in the form of variously sized wedged segments, the largest of which may hold a solitary seed. (source)



I have never had a fresh mangosteen, but I have heard that the taste is nothing like you have tasted before. Sweet, but tart at the same time. The dried fruit was no different. At first, I was not sure that I liked it. I was not sure what it tasted like at all. But, after a few pieces, it grew on me. The tartness hits first, but then it finishes with a sweetness mixed with a smokiness. The smokiness seems to linger into the aftertaste.

I really enjoyed being able to try the dried mangosteen, but now it just makes me want to try the fresh fruit so much more! I think a trip to Thailand or Costa Rica needs to be in my future. :)

From the Megafruit website:

  • Called the queen of fruits
  • Has been called the most delicious fruit in the world
  • Rarely available in the US market due to the delicate environment it needs to grow in
  • High Level of Xanthones – considered to be the most powerful of all antioxidants with benefits researched to cover:
    • Improved cardiovascular health
    • Natural antibiotic
    • Antiviral
    • Anti-inflammatory
    • Anti- aging

Thank you so much, Megafruit for letting me try these three delicious megafruits!

Megafruit at Vicente Foods in Brentwood

We are very happy to announce that Vicente Foods on San Vicente Boulevard in Brentwood Southern California is now carrying all 3 flavors of our Megafruit dried fruit products. These products contain no sulfites and no sugar. Our packages are recyclable.

Vicente Foods location:
12027 San Vicente Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90049


Come check out Mangosteen, Lychee, and Baby Pineapple for after school snacks for your kids or a afternoon snack for yourself in the office.

Come see us on June 7th, 2010 from 10A to 2P for our in store demo. Come ask questions and taste the flavors. Ask us about ORAC and other nutrition information. Find out why Dr. Oz said Mangosteen is 1 of 5 must eat superfoods for 2010. We want to meet you. If you have a blog, come do a review of our products.

Email us at and let us know what you think. All products will be available online at Amazon next week.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Lychee Mango Coconut Panna Cotta recipe from Cinnamon

Summer is coming and everyone is thinking about nautical stripes, shorts, and flip flops already. What I love most about summer is the way we can eat lighter because there is so much fresh vegetables and fruits available to use in soups, salads, and everything else.

I found this recipe online by a blogger named Cinnamon from India and I wanted to share her recipe with you because it is just that good. I love panna cotta, mangoes and coconuts. When I found this recipe online and saw that it also included the lovely lychee fruit, it was love at first bite. Try this recipe for yourself. It is pretty easy to follow.

Let us know your favorite recipes for summer. Email them to We will post 4 of them on our blog one a week and you can vote on your favorite recipe of the 4 and we will give a prize to the number 1 favorite. Send us your recipes now.

Here is the recipe from Cinnamon.
This version is a little different, which includes Lychees, Coconut cream and Ginger!!!

Cream : 200 ml
SemiWhipped cream : 200 ml
Coconut Cream : 100 ml
Sugar : 50 gms
Lychees : 100 gms, pureed
Ginger : 1 tsp, grated
Vanilla essence : few drops
Gelatin : 6 leaves

  1. Soak Gelatin in cold water to soften and keep aside.
  2. Take cream, coconut cream, sugar, ginger in a heavy saucepan and bring to light simmer, just till boiling for 10 mins.
  3. Remove from heat and add the Lychee puree and vanilla.
  4. Squeeze the excess water out of the gelatin and stir into the hot cream.
  5. Allow the cream to cool completely.
  6. Fold in the semi whipped cream and pour the mixture into moulds.
  7. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate till fully set.
  8. Serve with Mango Syrup and chopped lychees... errr... mine was actually Mango puree :)
  9. To serve, carefully pass a knife through the edges of the mould, and place the mould in warm water for few mins and then invert on to the serving plate.
Check out Cinnamon Trail here for other great recipes from India.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Superfruits Company Hires Veteran Food Broker

Contact: Susana Bub

Tel. 888-881-8119 ext. 2

Cell Phone: 310-500-6388



Superfruits Company Hires Veteran Food Broker

Megafruittm Ventures Continued Success Prompts Company Growth

Los Angeles, CA, May 5, 2010 — Los Angeles-based Megafruittm Ventures, Inc., a health food company dedicated to bringing highly nutritious exotic Superfruits to the US, has appointed Teresa Holman of NorCal Naturally Special Food Broker as Megafruittm Ventures’s Key Account Manager focusing on Northern California to bring Superfruits not yet widely known in the US to the American public.

“Teresa Holman was the perfect choice for us. Both Teresa and Megafruittm Ventures are committed to bringing new innovative naturally healthy foods to the marketplace. Megafruittm Ventures believes that the American public wants great tasting new foods that have lots of health benefits. Teresa understands what health conscious individuals want to see in their markets”, said Sean Kono, CEO, Megafruittm Ventures.

Holman brings nearly twenty years of Natural & Grocery Foods experience to the Megafruittm Ventures team, most recently managing her own Brokerage company. Prior to that, Holman spent eight years as Senior Business Manager and Director for Natural Specialty Sales (a division of Acosta) in Northern and Southern California markets. She has also worked with Wyman’s Beverage Company (later sold to Naked Juices) as a Sales Manager, and Falcon Trading, where as an Account Manager she managed natural and specialty retail sales and food service in Northern and Southern California. Holman has managed over 75 manufacturers in California that include Kettle, Barbara’s Bakery, White Wave, Horizon, Kashi, Kellogg’s, Cascadian Farms, Muir Glen, Bear Fruit, Liberty Richter Brands, Simply Orange, Ethnic Gourmet and Thai Kitchen.

Teresa Holman will be working on bringing exotic gourmet Superfruits to the marketplace with Megafruittm Ventures. One of the products Megafruittm Ventures is bringing to the marketplace for the first time ever is dried all natural Mangosteen made with no sugar and no sulfites. Dr. Oz and Dan Buettner author of The Blue Zones: Lessons for Living Longer From the People Who've Lived the Longest wrote about the 5 most important Superfoods we must all begin to eat now. The Queen of Fruits, the Mangosteen was #3 on this list. Mangosteen (Tang YP) has more antioxidants than any other fruit, is rich in vitamins A and C and tastes delicious. Mangosteens contain xanthones (Watanapokasin) which are considered to be the most powerful of all antioxidants. Benefits researched cover improved cardiovascular health, natural antibiotic, antiviral, anti-inflammatory, and anti-aging.

Works Cited

Tang YP, Li PG, Kondo M, Ji HP, Kou Y, Ou B. Effect of a mangosteen dietary supplement on human immune function. 12 August 2009. .

Watanapokasin R, Jarinthanan F, Jerusalmi A, Suksamrarn S, Nakamura Y, Sukseree S, Uthaisang-Tanethpongtamb W, Ratananukul P, Sano T. Potential of Xanthones from Tropical Fruit Mangosteen as Anti-cancer Agents. 26 January 2010.


About Megafruittm Ventures

Founded in 2009, Megafruittm Ventures was started by a husband and wife team when they went on vacation in Thailand and found great tasting fruits with amazing health benefits that were not yet known in the US. They wanted to make it their mission to introduce new healthy foods to the marketplace.

To learn more, visit

For more information about this topic please call Marketing and Public Relations Director, Susana Bub at 888.881.8119 ext. 2 or email


Benefits of Eating Fruit - fresh and dried

There are so many benefits of eating fruit that we often forget because we are too busy to plan nutrient rich meals for ourselves daily. Fruits are full of vitamins and rich in antioxidants. If we took a little time to plan our meals daily, we would be able to incorporate more fruit in our diets and reap the benefits of eating them.

The benefits of the different types of fruit are varied, however they all contain some benefit to our health.

Here are a list of benefits from eating fruit:

1.) Fruits are high in fiber.
2.)Some fruits are high in antioxidants.
3.) Some fruits like the banana can give us lots of good energy.
4.) Eating more fruit can potentially aid in weight loss because fruits are low in calorie but packed with fiber and water to keep you full longer.
5.) Fruits can help lower cholesterol and high blood pressure. And some fruits help reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases as well as cancers.

How can you incorporate more fruit in your diet with your busy lifestyle?
Always have it available wherever you go. Take an apple and put it in your bag when you go out. Keep some dried fruit at your desk at work or in your car for those hungry emergencies when you are stuck in traffic. The key is to have it available so you don't drive to your nearest fast food place to order something because you are starving and don't have these healthy fruits available to you.

You should get 5 servings of fruits a day. Here are ways to make sure they are incorporated in your meals.

At breakfast use fresh fruit or dried fruits in your breakfast cereal or yogurt.
At lunch and dinner put some dried fruit or fresh fruit in your salads.
For a snack between meals, carry an apple or banana in your bag or take a bag of dried fruits with you to work or out for the day.
For dessert add some dried fruit or fresh fruit to your ice cream, yogurt, or just eat plain in a fruit salad.

Take the time to think about how you will use fruit to enhance your diet everyday and soon it will be part of your daily routine.

Summer is coming it will be so easy to eat lots of fruits.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Ways to Make Life More Manageable Less Stressful

In our modern society where we are wired with cell phone, internet, voicemails and everything else. Life is on high speed. Sometimes life seems like a long "to do" list where nothing is every fully accomplished at the end of the day.

There are some ways you can make your life more manageable so that you can have more time to spend doing the things you want to do instead of running errands or returning phone calls.

1.) Group chores together in geographic areas. Figure out where your grocery store, post office, drug store, and dry cleaning are located and see if you spend way too much time driving from one errand to the next. Try to get all the errands done in one area before going to the next area so you don't double back. OR change some of the locations of your errands so they are closer to your house.

2.) Do the same tasks all at the same time. If you have 3 phone calls to return and 10 emails to return. Do all the phone calls in one block of time and then do the emails in another block of time so you are not switching gears over and over again. Make all photocopies at once for several projects if possible. Cut all vegetables for several days of meals and store them in zip locks so you don't have to cut vegetables every night. Plan your meals by week so when shopping at the grocery store you can buy a week's worth of food at one time.

3.) Schedule your life so that you can prioritize your tasks everyday. If you have something important scheduled at every hour during the work day, you will make sure that those tasks are accomplished before starting something that is not a priority. You must schedule break times, exercise time, and lunch time and stick to those times so that you don't skip those important things in life that keep you in balance. This schedule is just a reminder that anything not on that list is not a "must do" for the day and you can wait until tomorrow to finish that task.

4.) Get help - Get some help for some of the things that you need to have done to help your life run smoothly. If you don't have time to clean your house, hire a cleaning service once a week. Order your groceries online to save time driving to the market, picking out the food, and driving it home again. Order birthday and shower gifts online and have them shipped directly to your gift recipient. This way you don't have to take it to the post office or wrap it. Hire a sitter to help you with your kids when you need a little more time to finish work from home.

5.) Just say no - You can let your phone calls go to voice mail if you don't have the time to sit on the phone with your mom or best friend in the afternoon. Say no to parties where you feel only obligation to attend. Only go to the events that you want to go to. If you are feeling stressed about talking to someone on the phone or attending an event, you will probably not be really good company anyway. If your friend asked you for a favor, but you really cannot do it without a lot of inconvenience to your life, just say "sorry I cannot help you this time."

6.) Everything does not have to be perfect all of the time - Sometimes its ok if things are good enough. Making everything perfect places way too much unnecessary stress on your life. Your house does not have to be a show home every day. Your outfit does not need to look like you stepped out of a magazine every day. The dinner you make does not need to look like a chef from the Food Network made it. Do the best that you can and don't beat yourself up about anything you do that is not perfection.

7.) Know your limits - If you cannot do something or do not want to do something. Don't push yourself. That goes for exercise and over scheduling your work or social life. Do the best you can, but don't make yourself sick trying to work out harder than your body can handle. Don't schedule so many things socially on the weekends that you are stressed doing too many things and not enjoying yourself.

8.) Take time for yourself to nourish your body and soul. Do yoga for your body. Watch television or read a book instead of loading the dishwasher. Go out for a treat like a scoop of ice cream and browse through a bookstore just for fun.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Give Yourself a Break Today

Today started off with a few issues in my personal and work life followed by Twitter getting hacked and giving all the accounts 0 followers including Kim Kardashian and Ashton Kutcher who had 3 million followers each. I started to feel panicked and my mind started to race. I could not sit still and started to stress out. Then I stopped the panic and made myself a nice breakfast and sat at the dining table and ate it slowly and mindfully while making sure to enjoy every bite.

What came next is what everyone should do when stress starts to take over and overwhelm your mind and body. I looked around and decided to prioritize what absolutely needed to be done today and made a list of what could be done tomorrow. Then I took a deep breath and closed my eyes and breathed for 10 minutes and meditated. Then I took 10 more minutes to stretch and started to work on my list. An hour later I took a 10 minute break and sat in my garden to look at the sky and the birds. I then returned to my office to continue working for another hour. After an hour, I took another 10 minute break where I scanned the Wall Street Journal and New York Times online. It goes on like this until my work is done for the day.

Google is a work place that has an 80/20 work policy which means they ask their employees to take 20 percent of their work hours during the day to daydream, meditate, go for a walk, workout, or take a nap. The reason they do this is because they know that employees are more creative and productive when they are given time to refresh their minds and relax. Many of their revolutionary business ideas were realized because of their company philosophy. Their employees are very happy in their work environment which benefits Google in return.

Since Google's forward thinking philosophy does not exist in lots of corporate environments. It is important for us to take the time for ourselves when we can to improve our personal and professional lives. Use your lunch hour to take time to relax instead of running around doing errands or working through lunch. If you have time to yourself on the weekends take a walk by yourself. Or go on a hike with your kids or pets to clear your mind of worries. Enjoy every single moment in your life when you are cooking, eating, or spending time with family. Live and savor all the little moments of your life and really allow yourself to enjoy that great cup of coffee when you have 5 or 10 minutes to do nothing. Allow yourself to do nothing. It is important. Your mind and body will pay you back by helping you work through your work challenges and life challenges after it has had a chance to recharge its batteries.

Enjoy the sun today and if it is raining where you are listen to the rain fall. Life is to be experienced. Give yourself a break today.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Is sushi healthy ?

There was a segment on NBC LA last night titled "Is sushi healthy?" It was quite a catchy title so naturally I stayed up until 11:20PM to watch it. My first thought was "Am I eating way too much sushi? And is it about gaining weight by eating too much sushi?"

The segment was about which types of sushi were healthy to eat and which sushi were not healthy to eat. The main concern was the types of fish that had high mercury levels. In the segment, the discussion was about a study conducted where tuna and other sushi fish were tested from different restaurants and supermarkets in Los Angeles to see which type of sushi had the highest level of mercury. The results showed that larger fish that have been in the water longer tend to have higher levels of mercury and smaller fish that have been in the water for less time had lower levels of mercury. The report showed that big eye tuna and other types of larger tuna had the highest levels of mercury.

There was also an interview with someone who got very sick from eating sushi every single day because he thought eating sushi every day was healthy. When he went to the doctor, he found out that he had very high levels of mercury in his blood. One of his favorite sushi fish that he ate daily was ahi tuna.

The main thing to take away from this story is everything should be eaten in moderation. The man who got mercury poisoning ate sushi every day. Eating sushi 2 or 3 times a week should be ok. Also, eating different types of fish that come in the smaller sizes would also help keep mercury levels down.

Everything in moderation should be the lesson from this story.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Dried Fruit with Persian Rice YUMMY

One of my all time favorite Persian dishes is the dried fruit with Persian rice recipe that I always have with the chicken kabobs at Shamshiri in Westwood in Los Angeles. I cannot get enough of it. Today, I decided to go to the market and pick up ingredients for this dish so I could make it at home for dinner. I found a great recipe on Epicurious and I adapted it a little by adding some of Megafruit's baby pineapple. Wow was it a great addition to this traditional dish. The baby pineapple added an extra layer of flavor that was so different from the raisins and cranberries while perfectly complimenting the rice dish. Try it out for yourself sometime. Happy Eating.

Here is my adapted recipe:

I added 1 of the 2 oz. bag of Megafruit baby pineapple to the recipe.

  • 3 cups basmati rice (1 1/4 lb)
  • 4 qt water
  • 3 tablespoons salt
  • 1/2 cup dried apricots (3 1/2 oz), quartered
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins (3 oz)
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries (2 oz)
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped shelled unsalted pistachios (not dyed red; 2 1/2 oz)

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Water Earth's Most Valuable Resource

Water is so important to our everyday life that we must be conscious of how we use it or we could run out one day. Think about how you use water daily: Showering, washing clothing and dishes, for hydration, cooking, energy production. When there is no water for more than 12 hours of the day because of something like a water main break, people are usually very unhappy for the inconvenience.

The United States is so used to have clean drinking water that comes out of the taps that we take for granted that clean drinking water is an infinite resource. If you saw the footage of Haiti this last few months, you probably saw that the Haitians do not have clean drinking water readily available to them. Water is not readily potable and available in many countries and there are many countries that are really in dire need of water. Recently, I read an article about water and how we as a society could go greener and become less wasteful of our most important natural resource. Think about how you can help your planet.

See the article below.

Water Water Everywhere Much of It Going to Waste in The Progress Report

by Peter H. Gleick

Your mother was right: Waste not, want not. The largest, least expensive and most environmentally sound source of water to meet California's future needs isn't "new" water at all, but the water being wasted in every sector of our economy. So concludes a new report, three years in the making, published this week by the Pacific Institute of Oakland.

What this means for California is simple: We can meet the needs of a growing population and economy, and still have water left over to protect our state's natural beauty without expensive and environmentally destructive dams or reservoirs, by improving how efficiently we use water.

The good news is these improvements are well within our reach. We can save a huge amount of water with currently available technologies and policies, smarter pricing and economics, appropriate state and local regulations and public education.

Another bit of good news: Water conservation does not mean brown lawns, short showers or cutbacks in the state's economy. With today's technology we can do all the things we want to do, but with less water, by improving efficiency and reducing waste.

While this new report focused on urban water use, farmers can also conserve vast quantities of water while maintaining a strong agricultural economy through improved irrigation practices and continuing the trend toward less water-intensive crops.

Saving water also saves energy and money for water providers, consumers, and the state as a whole -- two other resources in short supply. Our best estimate is that one-third of California's urban water use -- more than 2.3 million acre-feet -- can be saved with existing technology. At least 85 percent of that water can be saved at less than what it would cost to tap into new sources without the many social, environmental and economic consequences that any major water project would bring.

How is this possible? Aren't we already conserving water? Indeed, California often leads much of the rest of the country in innovative water conservation efforts. Los Angeles has added 700,000 people in the past two decades, yet it has not increased its water demand because of efforts to improve efficiency. In 1975, California's economy produced around $30 in goods and services for every thousand gallons of water used; by 2000, this had tripled to $90 per thousand gallons. Yet, during this same period, total statewide water use decreased, despite the fact that our population grew from 21.5 million to more than 34 million. This is an astounding accomplishment.

Yet far more can be done. To give a mundane, yet telling example: the largest single user of water inside our homes is the toilet. Old toilets use six gallons every time we flush. New ones use only 1.6 gallons per flush, a 70 percent savings. While many old toilets have been replaced, it turns out that millions of inefficient ones remain.

If all those old toilets were replaced, the state would save another 420,000 acre-feet of high-quality water that now goes down the drain, and consumers will save money at the same time.

Forget those old jokes about having to flush twice -- the current generation of efficient toilets does a better job than that old one still in your home. The amount of water being wasted by inefficient toilets is greater than any new dam could hope to supply, even if we could find a place to build one that was environmentally, economically and politically acceptable (which we can't).

Another "reservoir" of potential savings is replacing inefficient washing machines in our homes, which could save more than 100,000 acre-feet of water, reduce energy and detergent use -- as well as save consumers money. Outdoor water use can also be made far more efficient with simple changes such as adding irrigation timers or using computer-controlled sprinklers that automatically respond to changing weather conditions. Similar examples of efficiency improvements can be found in every sector of our economy: New digital x-ray machines in hospitals, for instance, provide better images for doctors and replace the old water-intensive film process.

Capturing all of the water we now waste will require new commitments on the part of individuals, government agencies, public-interest groups and others with vested, often conflicting interests in California's water policy. Some of these efforts will be easy; some will be hard. But becoming more efficient is faster, cheaper and better for the environment than building more mega water projects.

There is one last benefit of not wasting water: Your mother would approve.

Peter Gleick, a 2003 MacArthur Fellow, is president of the Pacific Institute in Oakland.

Here is the link to the site:

Monday, May 3, 2010

Dairy alternative is Coconut Milk ?

I have loved coconut my whole life. I love coconut sorbet, coconut water, coconut ice cream, coconut cakes. You name it. If it has coconuts, I will buy it whether it is a food or a lotion. Recently, there have been lots of studies touting the great benefits of coconut milk and oil products. I am so happy to finally see that coconut is getting the credit it deserves.

The coconut as a food source to Southeast Asian countries and Polynesian islands have been used for centuries. People living in these areas use coconut in their curries, as condiments, and as oils to cook and use as a type of sunscreen because it blocks excessive exposure to the sun without blocking the UV Rays that are necessary for Vitamin D synthesis on the skin.

Another benefit of the coconut is the Medium Chain Fatty Acids that this fruit provides. Most of our diet does not consist of Medium Chain Fatty Acids. This type of fatty acid digests more easily, and is used by the liver to produce energy and as a source of fuel.

One other remarkable benefit of the coconut is its ability to transform into monoglycerides which kills viruses and bacteria once ingested. Medium Chain Fatty Acids found in coconut oils and milk also improve intestinal health by creating more friendly bacteria.

All these benefits from coconut milk and oils makes this a fruit worth trying if you have never been a fan in the past. The So Delicious company makes a large array of products that are made with coconut. You can have coconut sorbet, coconut milk with breakfast, use coconut oil to cook or eat coconut yogurt. With all these ways to get coconut's benefits into your diet. It should be easy to incorporate it into your life.