The Health Benefits of Mushrooms

The Health Benefits of Mushrooms

Mushrooms are commonly found in many entrees because of their excellent texture and delicious flavor, particularly when they are grilled or sautéed. Often used as a delicious side for steaks or mixed into a creamy pasta dish, mushrooms do more than please the taste buds. They also have a variety of nutrients that are extremely beneficial to one’s health.

Although there are around 140,000 different mushroom species around the world, only a very small percentage of these are edible and beneficial. Common types of health-promoting mushrooms include white button, shitake, maritake, enoki, portabella and oyster mushrooms.

Selenium

Mushrooms are the only type of produce that contain selenium; typically, this vital nutrient is found in meat. Selenium is essential for strong bones, hair and teeth. It also strengthens the immune system, making it less prone to disease. Enoki and Maritake mushrooms are a good choice for increasing immunity. In addition, selenium is an antioxidant; it may protect the body from free radicals, which can lead to a variety of cancers as well as heart disease.

Iron

Oyster mushrooms have excellent levels of iron, which is important for the creation of red blood cells. Adequate iron is particularly imperative for those who are anemic and for women during their childbearing years.

Vitamin D

Mushrooms are the only vegetable with vitamin D, which is essential in helping the body utilize calcium and phosphorus.

Potassium

With high levels of potassium, mushrooms may help decrease blood pressure, thereby decreasing the risk for heart disease. Additionally, potassium may also improve memory and cognitive function.

Vitamin B

Due to high levels of B vitamins in mushrooms, they make a great choice for those who want to improve their energy levels and boost metabolism.

Click here to check out iHerb’s selection of Medicinal Mushroom Products! New to iHerb? Use Rewards Code WOW123 to get up to $10 off any first time purchase!

References

McMillen, Matt; Mushrooms: What’s Edible, Medicinal and Psychedelic; WebMD; accessed September 8, 2014

Health Benefits of Mushrooms; Organic Facts; accessed September 8, 2014

Nearing, Margaret; 5 Health Benefits of Mushroom; Best Health; accessed September 8, 2014

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First-Time Order and Reordering Credits from iHerb Rewards

First-Time Order and Reordering Credits from iHerb Rewards

iHerb wants to reward you! Check back each Monday for the next few weeks to learn how you can rev up your iHerb Rewards experience to new heights!

When you share your Rewards Code, first-time customers who use it to place their order will save $10 on purchases of $40 or more, or $5 if the order is less than $40.

From that first-time purchase, iHerb will Reward you by placing a credit to your iHerb account.

The credit amount you earn is based on the size of their order. If they place a $100 order, a $6 credit will be applied to your account.

Each time that customer reorders, you will receive an additional 6% credit — and you will receive this credit for the duration of their first-year with iHerb.

For example, if that same customer places a second order worth $150 and it falls within that first year, your account will receive a $9 credit.  A $50 order made a month later will earn you a $3 credit.  Two more orders also placed within that first year that are worth $75 and $100 will earn you $4.50 and another $6 in credit and so forth for 12 consecutive months.

With just five orders, you have earned a total of $28.50 in credit. Who knows how much more you could earn before the year is up from just that one referral? Now imagine if that one referral turned into 10, 15 or 20, you could earn quite a lot in just one year.

All you have to do us share your Rewards Code with as many people as you can and the possibilities are endless.

That’s a year’s worth of iHerb health and nutrition for them and iHerb Rewards for you!

To learn more now visit: Rewards.iherb.com.

Next Up – Credits Earned after the First Year

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10 Fitness Tips for Men

Athlete warming and stretching

Consistent exercise can build muscle, burn calories and fight the flab that may start cropping up as one heads toward middle age and beyond. These ten tips will help men get more from their workouts whether they are at home, outside or the gym.

1. No Excuses

Instead of using lack of time as an excuse for avoiding a work out, men should strive to carve out 10 minutes for exercise most days of the week.

2. Choose a Variety of Activities

Keeping work-out routines varied will create challenges and keep you interested in fitness.

3. Strength Training is a Must

Building muscle is vital for fighting flab and building muscle. When you have more muscle mass, you will burn more calories.

4. Use the Weight of the Body

Those who cannot afford a gym membership need not worry; strength training can be done using the weight of the body, such as with push-ups and squats.

5. Do Not Forget to Stretch

Stretching is vital after exercising to cool down muscles and keep them limber.

6. Cardio is Important
Even beginners can walk or do short periods of jogging while working up to a longer, more strenuous cardio routine.

7. Try Endurance Training

This type of training works the muscles to the point of exhaustion, forcing them to become stronger by doing increased repetitions with greater weight.

8. Recovery Time is Vital

Rest days between very difficult days of strength training will help prevent injuries.

9. Create Small Goals

Men can focus more on small, measurable fitness goals, such as losing a couple pounds or adding a few more reps.

10. Keep it Exciting

A boring fitness routine is one that will be quickly dropped. Men can keep it interesting by learning a new sport, routine or fitness class.

Click here to see iHerb’s selection of sports, fitness and athletic supplements! New to iHerb? Use Coupon Code WOW123 to get $10 off any first time order with a minimum $40 purchase or $5 off for orders less than $40.

References

Demedeiros, James; Top 25 Fitness Tips and Strategies from the Experts; Men’s Fitness; accessed September 9, 2014

The 100 Best Fitness Tips; Men’s Health; accessed September 9, 2014

Rodriguez, Diana; Top 10 Diet and Fitness Tips for Men; Everyday Health; accessed September 9, 2014

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Filed under Fitness, Nutrition and Weight Loss, Men's Health

10 Fitness Tips for Women

10 Fitness Tips for Women

Fantastic fitness can be difficult for some women to achieve as they may work long hours at the office and still have to care for their home and children in the evenings. In fact, many women feel too mentally exhausted to sweat off calories at the gym.

These 10 tips can help women begin a new workout, find motivation or kick their workouts up a notch.

1. Exercise Consistently

Even women who do not have time for hour-long workouts four times each week can benefit from smaller allotments of consistent exercise each day.

2. Create Manageable Goals

Those who set unrealistic expectations for weight loss and other fitness goals are setting themselves up for failure. A better option is smaller goals, such as losing 5 pounds within the next month.

3. Challenge the Body

The body gets accustomed to any exercise it does repeatedly. Women can mix things up by challenging their bodies with a new exercise, a new speed or a heavier weight.

4. Use Correct Form

The best and safest results come from exercises such as push-ups, crunches and squats that are done with the correct form.

5. Try Interval Training

Interval training combines a high-intensity exercise with shorter bursts of a low-intensity exercise, such as running and walking.

6. Include Strength Training

Although cardio workouts are good, strength training, such as lifting weights, can increase muscle mass and endurance.

7. Find Accountability

A workout buddy will keep exercising fun and will increase the likelihood that the workout is completed.

8. Make It Fun

Another way to make fitness fun is to listen to peppy music with a good rhythm, especially while walking and running.

9. Use a Personal Trainer

A personal trainer can push someone to succeed, keep them accountable and help them increase muscular endurance.

10. Join a Class

Going to a fitness class even once a week will keep exercise fun, spontaneous and social.

Click here to see iHerb’s selection of sports, fitness and athletic supplements! New to iHerb? Use Coupon Code WOW123 to get $10 off any first time order with a minimum $40 purchase or $5 off for orders less than $40.

References

Goyanes, Cristina; 50 Must-Know Fitness Tips to Score Your Best Body; Shape; accessed September 8, 2014

Hobson, Katherine; 8 Strength Training Tips for Women; US News; accessed September 8, 2014

Sorgen, Carol; 10 Workout Secrets from the Pros; WebMD; accessed September 8, 2014

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Filed under Fitness, Nutrition and Weight Loss, Women's Health/Beauty Info

Three Light and Easy Chicken Recipes

Three Light and Easy Chicken Recipes

There are many healthy chicken meals that are both easy to prepare and delicious to eat. Because chicken is a lower-fat protein, it is beneficial for weight loss or weight management. The following three recipes are straightforward, uncomplicated and especially tasty.

Lighter Picatta

Ingredients

  • 4 skinned and boned chicken breast halves
  • 8 ounces low-fat, plain yogurt
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. margarine
  • 1-1/2 Tbs. lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 1 cup white vermouth
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 Tbs. capers
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Directions

  1. Marinade the chicken with yogurt and refrigerate for at least 2 hours. Once complete, rinse the chicken, pat them dry and set them aside.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, paprika, salt and pepper.
  3. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil, margarine and 1 ½ tablespoons of lemon juice.
  4. Dredge the chicken in the flour mixture and place in the skillet.
  5. Cook the chicken until both sides are brown — about 15 minutes. Remove the chicken and set aside.
  6. Add the vermouth, garlic, ¼ cup of the lemon juice, capers and water to the skillet and cook until the contents are reduced by half.
  7. Return the chicken to the skillet and cook for an additional 3 minutes. Top the chicken with the lemon caper sauce.

Thai Chicken Salad

Ingredients

  • 4 chicken breasts, cubed
  • 1 Tbs. Thai red curry paste
  • 1-14-ounce can coconut milk
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 2 tsp. grated orange zest
  • 1 mango, peeled and diced
  • 1  pineapple, diced
  • 4 cups mixed greens

Directions

  1. Whisk together the red curry paste, orange juice, orange zest and coconut milk in a large mixing bowl. Reserve ½ cup of the mixture for the dressing.
  2. Toss the chicken in half of the remaining coconut mixture in a large bowl.
  3. Toss the fruit and other half of the remaining coconut mixture in a different bowl.
  4. Allow both the chicken and fruit to marinade at room temperature for approximately 30 minutes then skewer the chicken and fruit on separate skewers.
  5. Grill the skewers until the chicken is thoroughly cooked and the fruit has grill marks on both sides.
  6. Remove the chicken and fruit from the skewers and place over the mixed greens. Add the reserved ½ cup mixture to the salad.

Chicken Pitas With Sun-Dried Tomato Vinaigrette

Ingredients

  • 4 cups cooked, shredded chicken breast
  • 1-1/2 Tbs. sun-dried tomato oil
  • 1 Tbs. sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • ¼ tsp. pepper
  • 1 cup tomato, diced
  • 2 Tbs. balsamic vinegar
  • ½ cup Asiago cheese, grated
  • 3 cups mixed greens
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil
  • 6 pitas, cut in half

Directions

  1. Combine the tomato oil, sun-dried tomatoes, garlic, balsamic vinegar and pepper.
  2. Stir in the chicken, cheese, diced tomatoes and basil.
  3. Add the mixed greens to the pitas, and then stuff with the chicken mixture. Enjoy.

iHerb sells thousands of natural food items, everything from stevia to gluten free flours to much more!  Click here to take a look at our product offerings.  If  you’re new to iHerb, you can use Rewards Code WOW123 to get $10 off your first order with a minimum $40 purchase or $5 off orders less than $40.

References

K. Bjorstad; Light Chicken Picatta; All Recipes; Accessed September 8, 2014

Thai Chicken Mango Pineapple Salad; Spoonful; Accessed September 8, 2014

Becky Mercuri; Little Italy Chicken Pitas with Sun-Dried Tomato Vinaigrette; Cooking Light; Accessed September 8, 2014

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The Best Supplements for Menopausal Women

Evening primrose aglow

Menopause signals the end of a woman’s childbearing years and the cessation of menstruation. Although the symptoms of menopause can vary dramatically among women, most women find that they suffer from at least a few symptoms. Top examples include hot flashes, night sweats, mood changes, depression and weight gain, due to a slowed metabolism.

Instead of turning to prescription medication, women can find relief from many of their symptoms with the help of herbal supplements and vitamins. Of course, women should check with their physicians before beginning any new supplement. In addition, women should remember to decrease their daily dosage of iron because not much is needed after menstruation ceases.

1. B Vitamins are widely known for increasing energy and may decrease symptoms of stress during menopause.

2. Vitamin E supplementation can help reduce hot flashes; it can also be found in foods, such as nuts and oils.

3. Evening Primrose 0il provides vital gamm-linolenic acid, which can help in the creation of natural hormones that provide relief from a wide gamut of menopausal symptoms.

4. Black Cohosh has long been studied for its efficacy in moderating women’s hormones. Because it does not affect estrogen levels, it is thought to be safe for women with family histories of breast cancer. This herb may improve mood and decrease the severity of hot flashes.

5. Calcium is important for all women — but most especially for those over the age of 50 who have increased bone loss.

6. St. John’s Wort is known for its ability to improve mood in women with mild depression; some also experience better sleep while taking it.

7. Ginseng can improve menopausal women’s moods and nightly sleep patterns. It can also improve libido, a common concern among women.

8. Dong Quai, an ancient Chinese herb, has proven helpful in reducing hot flashes in some women because it acts similar to estrogen in the body.

Click here to check out iHerb’s selection of Menopause Products! New to iHerb? Use Rewards Code WOW123 to get up to $10 off your first order!

References

Weil, Andrew, M.D.; Menopause; Dr. Weil; accessed August 27, 2014

Can Supplements Ease Menopause Symptoms? Health; accessed August 27, 2014

Smith, Michael W., M.D.; 11 Supplements for Menopause; WebMD; accessed August 27, 2014

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Filed under Aging and Health, Women's Health/Beauty Info

Is Lactase Right for You?

Is Lactase Right for You?

Lactose intolerance is one of the most common forms of allergy and can severely detract from a person’s diet if left unaddressed. The healthy consumption of calcium and other minerals found in dairy products is beneficial for bone density and blood-clotting mechanisms. There are many benefits to taking lactase that allow for better management of lactose intolerance and other dietary concerns.

More Dietary Diversity

Lactase, a digestive enzyme, is a naturally occurring substance in the small intestine of the body that digests the natural sugars in milk and other dairy products. A deficiency in this substance can lead to lactose intolerance. One of the main benefits of taking lactase is the ability to eat a more diverse sampling of dairy products. It also allows for better absorption of calcium and other beneficial nutrients found in dairy. The natural enzymes found in cultured yogurt are another example of dairy benefits that aid the gut and prevent illness.

Reduced Digestive Complaints

Lactase reduces the major symptoms associated with lactose intolerance. Bloating and stomach cramps are some of the more common symptoms that occur when dairy is not properly digested. Digestive distress can be the biggest hurdle associated with dairy products. Some symptoms are mild while others are more severe — such as nausea, cramping and diarrhea.

Macro-Nutrients

Lactase can allow for the absorption of tiny nutrients from lactose-producing items such as cheese, yogurt and milk. These macro-nutrients include naturally occurring protein that provides energy throughout the day to help control blood sugar. Yogurt contains the macro-nutrient conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) that has shown in some studies to prevent illness during cold and flu season.

Taking Lactase

Lactase supplementation is an option for people who wish to keep eating dairy products, but do not digested them properly due to the lack of the enzyme lactase. Lactase is an enzyme that splits the milk sugar lactose, to produce the sugars glucose and galactose, which are thought to be better digested. It is advisable to take lactase supplements prior to meals containing lactose.

Click here to check out iHerb’s selection of Lactase Products! New to iHerb? Use Rewards Code WOW123 to get up to $10 off your first order.

References

White, Justin; Why is Lactose Intolerance More Common in Adults? Greatist; accessed August 15,2014

Zeratsky, Katherine; Is it Important to Include Probiotics and Prebiotics in a Healthy Diet?; Mayo Clinic; accessed August 15, 2014

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Filed under Allergy, Asthma and Respiratory Info, Food (Benefits, Cooking and Nutrition), Herbs and Supplements, Nausea, Digestion and Stomach Issues

How to Eat More Whole Grains!

Loaf of multigrain bread

Whole grains are more than just an excellent source of fiber. Eating this type of grain that retains its bran and germ may lead to a healthier heart and a lower risk of diabetes and some cancers. With an additional benefit of low fat content, whole grains are an excellent addition to almost any diet.

However, some people do not know how to add whole grains to their diets, assuming that if they do, they will lose flavor and be forced to eat dry, bland foods that a horse might enjoy. On the contrary, whole grains can be quite delicious. With so many whole grains to try, individuals have plenty of choices as to how they will add them to their diets.

Try a Hot Breakfast

Steel-cut oats as well as the more familiar rolled oats both make excellent hot breakfasts, especially when mixed with fresh fruit. Oats are classic examples of mild-tasting whole grains.

Use Whole Grain Breads and Tortillas

Individuals can swap out white bread and white flour tortillas for whole grain breads, whole grain tortillas or corn tortillas — all of which help create healthy and filling lunches.

Try Whole Grains in Soups and Stews

Some whole grains are a welcome component to soups and stews. The best option is barley — perfect for vegetable soups.

Add Whole Grains to Casseroles

Barley is an excellent choice for casseroles and may even be used in place of rice or noodles for a heart-healthy alternative. This whole grain has a mild nutty flavor.

Exchange Enriched Products for Whole Grains

Whole grains can be easily incorporated into dishes that people already love. Whole wheat or brown rice pasta is an excellent swap for spaghetti or macaroni and cheese while brown rice can be substituted for white. In baked goods, individuals can try whole wheat flour.

Click here to check out iHerb’s selection of Whole Grain Cereals! New to iHerb? Use Rewards Code WOW123 to get up to $10 off your first order.

References

Tips to Help You Eat Whole Grains; Choose My Plate; accessed August 28, 2014

Garrard, Cathy; 10 Easy Ways to Eat More Whole Grains; Men’s Fitness; accessed August 28, 2014

Whole Grains: Hearty Options for a Healthy Diet; Mayo Clinic; accessed August 28, 2014

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Announcing the New iHerb Rewards Referral Schedule!

Announcing the New iHerb Rewards Referral Schedule!

iHerb wants to reward you! Check back each Monday for the next few weeks to learn how you can rev up your iHerb Rewards experience to new heights!

The iHerb Rewards Referral Schedule is even more Rewarding than ever before. How, you may ask?

Most referral programs allow you to refer a friend and when they purchase, you both receive $10.

Not bad for a one-time referral, but so much more limiting than what iHerb can now offer.

We wanted something better, a lot better and much more Rewarding. Frankly, we think iHerb Customers deserve all that and more.

With iHerb Rewards, you now have 4 exciting ways to earn Rewards from your referrals:

  1. First-time Order Credits > Earn 6% credit from all first-time customers to iHerb who use your Rewards Code
  2. 12 Months of Reordering Credits > Each time that customer reorders, you will receive an additional 6% credit during their first 12 months with iHerb
  3. Credits Earned after the First Year > You’ll earn 2% in credit on subsequent orders placed by your referrals from year two and beyond.
  4. Product Introductions to any iHerb Customer > You will earn Rewards for introducing any iHerb customer to any new product. The amount of the Reward is equal to 6% for customers in their first year, or 2% thereafter.

With iHerb, you earn Rewards on each and every purchase made by your referrals year after year.

Yeah, we think the new iHerb Rewards Schedule is definitely better!

Of course iHerb Rewards is rewarding to your referrals as well. When you share your Rewards Code, first-time customers will save $10 on purchases of $40 or more, or $5 if the order is less than $40.

This discount combined with our very low shipping makes shopping at iHerb the best overall value in the world for natural products.

You win and your referrals win! Go for it!

These are the highlights of the Rewards Schedule. To learn more now visit: Rewards.iherb.com.

Next Up – Details on First-Time Order and Reordering Credits

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How to Remove Grass Stains Naturally

How to Remove Grass Stains Naturally

Grass stains are such an expected part of summer that most parents dread scrubbing the green marks out of socks, shoes and pants throughout the warmer months. Grass stains are extremely difficult to remove from clothing because the green dye in the plant binds so thoroughly with the fibers in the material.

While many turn to commercial products, such as liquid stain removers, others are looking for a safer and more environmentally-friendly option. Many common products found in kitchens and bathrooms naturally remove stains from clothing fibers.

Hydrogen Peroxide

Often used as an antiseptic for cuts and scrapes, hydrogen peroxide is also an excellent cleanser for stains. When it touches organic matter, such as grass stains, it begins a bubbling action that produces oxygen and water, creating a light bleaching effect. One should soak the stain in peroxide for around 10 minutes before scrubbing it with a toothbrush to rub away the green.

Vinegar

Another common household cleanser that is noted for removing mineral buildup and kitchen stains, white vinegar can also be used on clothing. Vinegar can be mixed with water for a milder stain remover or can be used at full strength. Dab the stain with vinegar before washing for lighter stains, and then scrub the area for deeper stains. The pungent vinegar aroma easily washes out in the laundry.

Rubbing Alcohol

One of the better alternatives for dissolving grass stains on denim, rubbing alcohol is found in most homes. It can be applied with a sponge to the stain, and then washed as usual.

Additional Tips

  1. Treat the stain as soon as possible, grass stains tend to set deeply into fabric making them harder to remove over time.
  2. Before you put the item in the dryer, make sure the stain is gone. The heat will set most stains, making them nearly impossible to remove. If the stain hasn’t come out after running through the washing machine, treat it again with your stain treatment of choice and then put it back into the laundry.

Click here to check out iHerb’s selection of Carpet, Stain and Odor Removers and Cleaners! New to iHerb?  Use Rewards Code WOW123 to get up to $10 off your first order.

References

Wilson, Corina; How to Remove Grass Stains; House Cleaning Central; accessed August 14, 2014

It’s Easy to Remove Grass Stains; Simply Good Stuff; accessed August 14, 2014

Kirschner, Chanie; How to Remove Grass Stains Naturally; Mother Nature Network; accessed August 14, 2014

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