Low Fat Macaroni and Cheese

You surely love macaroni and cheese. But do you refrain because it could make you fat? Here is a low fat recipe that you will love then!

You will need:

1. Fat-free, evaporated milk: ¾ cup

2. Low fat cottage cheese: 1 cup

3. Low fat ricotta: ½ cup

4. Low fat cheddar cheese: ½ cup

5. Ground nutmeg: ½ tsp

6. Black pepper and salt to taste

7. Parmesan cheese: 1 tsp

8. Fine, dry bread crumbs: 1 tbsp

9. Cooked, elbow macaroni pasta: 1 pound.

Method of Preparation:

1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

2. Heat the milk over low heat and then add all the cheeses. Stir constantly until all melt.

3. Add the salt, pepper and nutmeg. Remove the saucepan from the flame and add pasta to this cheese sauce. Make sure you mix well.

4. Pour this in a casserole dish and sprinkle the bread crumbs and parmesan cheese on top.

5. Bake until you see bubbles. The top should be brown. This takes about 15 minutes.

Best Fruits during the Summer

In most part of the United States, summer brings in a variety of fruits and vegetables. The produce is rich and healthy throughout summer. Here are some of the best fruits to explore this summer:

1. Berries: In some areas, berries are available in the spring season but it is during summer that you will find a wide range of fresh berries like raspberries, blackberries, blueberries and strawberries. You should make sure you pick only the ripe ones from the local market.

2. Cherries: You will find sweet and sour cherries abundantly in summer. You can simply taste one before selecting the best. At supermarkets, tasting may be hard but farmer markets give you the option of tasting before buying.

3. Peaches and nectarines: Don’t buy peaches that are hard when you touch them. You should always buy peaches that you can’t smell.

4. Plums: Even these must be touched before you buy them. They shouldn’t be very hard.

5. Watermelon: This is the best fruits available during summer. It is fresh, juicy and refreshing. It cools your senses. However, it is advisable not to buy slices from the store because open cut fruits and vegetables tend to lose their nutritional value. If you can’t buy the whole melon, buy wedges.

6. Apples: Some varieties of apples are of course available even during summers. Crisp apples will give you the best flavour.

7. Tomatoes: Plum tomatoes are the best for making sauce and salsa. You can use the bigger tomatoes in various preparations too. You should buy tomatoes that have even coloration.

Hypertension and Diet

People who suffer from hypertension are at risk of other illnesses such as stroke, heart attack and kidney disease. Thankfully though, hypertension can be treated. By tweaking your diet you can minimize the risk of high blood pressure and thereby keep other illnesses at bay.

  1. Sodium: Everything about blood pressure has been related to sodium. It has always been under the radar in relation to hypertension. Sodium is a preservative and is usually found in high quantities in processed foods. This is why it’d be ideal for you to stick to only fresh food. When you buy processed food, check the label to see the amount of sodium added. For a whole meal such as a frozen dinner, it can’t be more than 600 mg.
  2. Weight loss: If you take care of your health and lose your extra pounds, you are sure to help yourself fight hypertension. If you lose your weight rapidly on the other hand and then gain it back, it’ll not only affect your body, it will also take a toll on your mental health and increase your blood pressure simultaneously. It will also cause a hoard of other problems related to health.
  3. Alcohol intake: Those who consume alcohol regularly are more prone to hypertension. Thus, you should limit your intake to only one drink per day.
Diet and Depression

Depression is a very serious condition. There are so many factors that influence it that you have to be very careful. Diet may not be the only factor that governs it but research suggests that diet does play an important role. Here are a few tips to help you out of it:

  1. Eat properly: Add fruits, vegetables, whole grains and low fat proteins to your diet. Stay away from fast foods, fatty foods, etc.
  2. Control your weight: Maintain the right weight by eating well and exercising.
  3. Omega 3s: Your diet has to be rich in omega 3 fatty acids.
  4. Skipping meals: This should be the last thing on your mind. When you skip meals, your body sugar levels go down. Low blood sugar can lead to mood disorders.
  5. Vitamin Bs: These maintain the health of your brains and hence you have to be careful. Make sure your diet contains B6, B12 and folate.
  6. Magnesium: Serotonin is a chemical that helps you stay in a good mood. The levels of serotonin depend on your magnesium intake. Also, this nutrient regulates its functioning. You must thus eat green leafy vegetables and whole grains because they contain high amounts of magnesium.
Delicious Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

We all love cookies. Chocolate chip cookies are an absolute favourite of many but how about pumpkin chocolate chip cookies? Don’t doubt them! They are amazingly delicious and extremely easy to make. You’ll know how right here!

You will need:

1. Pumpkin puree: 1 cup

2. White sugar: 1 cup

3. Vegetable oil: ½ cup

4. Egg: 1

5. Baking powder: 2 tsp

6. Pumpkin pie spice: 2 tsp

7. Salt: ½ tsp

8. Milk: 1 tsp

9. Vanilla extract: 1 tbsp

10. Semi-sweet chocolate chips: 2 cups

11. Cooking spray

Method of preparation:

1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Use the cooking spray to grease it.

2. Mix the sugar, pumpkin, vegetable oil and egg together. Let them combine well. Then sift pumpkin pie spice, baking powder, baking soda, flour and salt in another bowl. Once sifted, add vanilla extract and milk to the mixture.

3. Add the pumpkin mixture to the flour mixture slowly, mixing thoroughly all the while.

4. Now add the chocolate chips.

5. Use a spoon to drop scoopfuls of this mixture on to the greased sheet. Bake for 12 minutes.

Give your Smoothies a Kick with These Ingredients

Smoothies are loved by one and all. But do you want to try something different with your favourite smoothie to perhaps give it a kick? Here are a few ingredients that you could add and make it taste amazing!

1. Cinnamon – It is tasty as well as healthy! It adds sweetness to your smoothie and takes care of your appetite by making you feel full.

2. Tofu – You love cream? Add tofu and make your smoothie rich and smooth. Also, the added protein will only do you good!

3. Dates – Add dates without the pits to sweeten your smoothie instead of the usual sweeteners!

4. Avocado – Are you surprised? Don’t be. Add avocados and you will see what a transformation your smoothie makes.

5. Oats – You know they are very good for you. Just add some oats to thicken your smoothie and take in all the nutrients packed in oats.

6. Almond Butter – This will convert your smoothie into a meal. What else could you ask for? No, it won’t taste weird. It’ll blend perfectly and your smoothie will be creamy and very filling.

7. Fresh Herbs – You could add these to your strawberry smoothie.

Don’t Let the Diet Wreckers Get You

Parties are generally diet wreckers. We all tend to get a tad too careless when we are hosting parties. We end up eating more than we should and that wrecks our diet like nothing else could. Are you planning on hosting a barbecue bash? Or a pool party? Or just any party? Well, there are ways to keep your food intake in control. Here are three fail proof tips.

Firstly, choose lean meat. Of course hot dogs and beef burgers are traditional and almost a must have at a party but you could go for something like chicken or tuna steak. White meat turkey is also a good option. You could also add vegetarian to your menu and go for mushrooms.

Stay away from bread. Have lettuce though.

Keep booze to the bare minimum. You can replace alcohol with something like ice tea. If you have to drink and there is no way out, stick to white wine.

Here’s a mini tip that will help you a lot – drink about 2 glasses of water before the party. That will keep your appetite in check.

Pet your Bird Right

Birds make beautiful pets. We all love birds, don’t we? Oh, I love them and hey, I own a pair of love birds too!

Birds are simply amazing. Just watching them fly around and live in their own world can give you immense happiness. But you have to take of them when you adopt them.

Firstly, you might have to make a few adjustments so that your birds like their new home. Some birds are merely content by staying alone and not having to interact while some others can get destructive if not given proper attention.

Nothing can be generalized since there are a number of birds that can be adopted. This is why it’d be better to do your research about the birds and then cater to them accordingly. You have to take care of their diet too because some birds can be highly specific, requiring only a particular type of diet. If they are not provided with their requirements, they can die.

Also, you must pay attention when you buy the bird cage. Metal cages that are painted are a big no. They can be really toxic to the bird. Some birds have the habit of chewing on their cage and the paint may contain toxic materials that can lead to poisoning. Even plastic cages must be avoided for the same reason. Thus, a non toxic material based cage would be the best choice.

Diet is generally specific but it always advisable to be diverse. Give your birds fruits and vegetables too. Grains and seeds can be supplemented from time to time. For some birds, digestion of certain foods is difficult. This is why research is important.

Taking care of a bird is not difficult. You only need to be sure of its diet.


Power Foods to Include in your Diet

There are many foods that are dubbed as power foods but here are 12 that are extremely beneficial and helpful. They will give you the least amount of calories and the highest amount of nutrition. All these 12 foods are plant foods. Plant foods are known for being rich in chemicals that help the body become healthier.

All of the chemicals are great anti oxidants. They cleanse the body and prevent damage of the cells. Thus, they prevent deadly diseases such as diabetes, inflammation, cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, heart disease and premature aging.

Also, these 12 foods are of different varieties, making sure that you get the best of each essential nutrient. They are healthy, they are beneficial and of course, they are tasty!

Here are the foods you must include in your diet for sure –

  • Almonds
  • Bell peppers
  • Broccoli
  • Beans
  • Blueberries
  • Grapes
  • Citrus fruits
  • Olive oil
  • Strawberries
  • Spinach
  • Whole grains
  • Tomatoes