GOING GLUTEN-FREE

Gluten is a particular kind of protein that is not found in eggs or meat but is in barley, rye, wheat and triticale (a cross between wheat and rye). Going gluten-free means avoiding these grains. A gluten-free diet is essential for those who have celiac disease, a condition that causes inflammation in the small intestines, or gluten allergies.  Symptoms of celiac disease include anemia, constipation or diarrhea, bloating, gas, headaches, skin rashes, joint pain and fatigue.

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A DIET FOR HEALTH & WEIGHT LOSS

Have you noticed? Look around and you’ll see a majority of Americans who are either overweight or obese. Look in supermarkets and you’ll see a plethora of food products, many of them processed or high-fat and/or sweet laden.  Consuming such a diet often leads to poor health and weight gain. It is not surprising that the leading cause of death in the United States is heart disease. A number of diseases, including pre-diabetes, diabetes, stroke and depression, are linked to how we eat .....

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ANTIBIOTICS IN OUR FOOD

Just what is in the food we eat? Considering the food chain, did you know adding antibiotics to food dates back to the 1940s? Antibiotic use has led to a dramatic reduction in illness and death from infectious diseases, yet there is a downside to this practice. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and others encourage health care professionals and patients to use antibiotics more wisely and seek education and understanding about both the risks and benefits of using them.

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are eating enough fruits and vegetables is to serve a variety of colors at each meal. For example, blueberries, carrots and red bell peppers are all different colors and they are all good for your overall health.


Replace at least half of the refined grains such as pasta, bread and rice with whole-grain foods. Serve whole-grain cereals and bread; these are high in fiber and include quinoa, popcorn, whole-wheat bread, oatmeal and brown rice. Limit refined grains and try to eat more bran.


When it’s snack time, offer healthy alternatives such as pears, sliced apples and celery sticks or whole-grain bread served with peanut butter, low-fat cheese or soynut butter. Instead of cake or cookies, snack on unsweetened, fat-free yogurt or sugar-free ice pops. Choose fruits and vegetables instead of chips or French fries.


Get outside in the sun with your child to improve vitamin D levels naturally. Aim for at least one hour of active play daily, and limit TV, computer, cell phone and video game time to no more than one or two hours a day.

A healthy, nutritious diet helps children grow and learn. It also helps prevent weight-related diseases, such as diabetes and obesity. Children need different amounts of specific nutrients at different ages. They need to eat three meals daily and have healthy snacks in between. The more active your child is, the more calories he or she needs. Here are some ways to encourage your child to follow a nutritious diet:


•  Limit junk food and fast food. Choose baked chips, unbuttered popcorn and pretzels instead.

•  Use less fat, salt and sugar. Substitute healthy cooking oils such as canola for butter or margarine.

•  Offer fat-free milk or water instead of sugary fruit drinks and sodas. If you child likes juice, ensure it is 100 percent juice without any added sugars.

•  Serve more low-fat milk and milk products such as fat-free yogurt or try soy drinks enriched with calcium and vitamin D if your child cannot digest lactose.

•  Steam, boil, broil or grill food instead of frying them.

•  Serve fresh, frozen or canned salmon, light tuna and shrimp.

•  Choose healthy proteins such as eggs, nuts and lean meats.


Make sure half of what is on your child’s plate consists of fruits and vegetables. A fun, easy and tasty way to ensure your children

HELP YOUR CHILDREN GROW AND LEARN

HARLEENA SINGH

Harleena Singh is a professional freelance writer with a background in teaching and education. She has a keen interest in food and health related issues and can be approached through her website freelancewriter.co. Checkout her blog and network with her on Google+, Twitter, and Facebook.

more articles by harleena singh

Involve your children in meal planning and preparation. Together you can cook large batches of stew or soup and freeze them as a time saver. This helps teach children healthy ways of cooking.


Sit down and eat with your child. Family meals eaten together help you bond better. Do not eat in front of the TV and have everyone put their phones away so you can have a conversation.


Every small change in your family’s eating habits and physical activity can have a huge impact on your children’s health.