Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Blueberry Tuesday: Blueberry Cookie Pizza

Blueberry Tuesday:
Hello there!  It's Blueberry Tuesday, and I remembered to post a recipe.  I love making single serving homemade veggie pita pizzas.  They are easy, healthy, and so quick.  So when I saw this recipe I thought it would be a really great dessert for pizza night.  It's also easy to prepare leaving you more time to spend with your family!

Blueberry Cookie Pizza

Monday, August 27, 2012

Positive Attitude & Banana Benefits & Odd Uses

Motivation for Monday Fitness Tip: 
Benefits of a Positive Attitude
As humans, it's so easy for most of us to automatically think with more of a "Glass half empty" attitude first instead of having a positive perspective.  Today, Bob & Caroline Scott of the Louisville Athletic Club shared some ways in which staying positive can benefit our physical health.

Proverbs 17:22 - "A cheerful heart does good like medicine, but a broken spirit makes one sick."

Benefits of a Positive Attitude
  • Increased life span
  • Lower rates of depression
  • Greater resistance to the common cold
  • Reduced risk of death from cardiovascular disease.
  • Better coping skills during hardships and times of stress.
"Negative thoughts can obviously increase stress levels, which as we have talked about before, is extremely bad for your health.  On the other hand, staying positive can benefit your health in the following ways.  Another good verse in the Bible that I think is fitting for this topic comes from Proverbs 16:24 and says, "Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and healing to the bones." -Caroline Scott

Bob Scott's advice is:
"Try to eliminate negative self-talk or thoughts.  If they start to creep in, replace them with more positive thoughts like the following examples (you can even write these down to help remind you).
"I know I will succeed"
"God is always there to help me"
"I am not a failure." 
A few things to think about when it comes to squashing negative talk and thoughts are: Don't say anything about yourself that you wouldn't say about someone else.  Surround yourself with other positive people, and be open to humor.  You will probably find that with practice, being more positive will also help you become less critical and judgmental to to those around you.  Remember that the Bible says in Philippians 4:8, "Finally brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are admirable, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy, meditate on these things."
For more health and fitness tips, check out Caroline's Blog:

Bananas: Benefits & Uses
Bananas are one of the most amazing foods on the planet.  Here are a list of some of their benefits and some surprising uses.

Health Benefits: (Source Chiquita Banana Site)
Stroke Prevention: Bananas may keep strokes away according to a Dutch study published in the journal Stroke. Bananas’ concentration of B6 and potassium—which can boost your mood and help your heart, respectively—make them a great healthy food choice.  According to research in "The New England Journal of Medicine"eating bananas as part of a regular diet can cut the risk of death by strokes by as much as 40%!
Packed with Vitamins: Bananas are one of the few foods to contain the 6 major vitamin groups including B vitamins.  Bananas are a very rich source of vitamin B6 containing 20% of your daily recommended value, which your brain needs to function properly and make you wise.  They are also a great good source of potassium, dietary fiber, manganese and contain 15% of recommended daily dose of vitamin C.
Hearth Healthy: Bananas are a terrific, heart-healthy food when included in a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol. While many factors affect heart disease, diets low in saturated fat and cholesterol may reduce the risk of this disease.  Bananas are naturally fat, cholesterol, and sodium-free.  The fiber in a banana may also reduce the risk of heart disease and some cancers when eaten as part of a diet low in fat, cholesterol, and sodium, and rich in fiber-containing foods like bananas. 
Reduce Cancer Risk: Low fat diets rich in fiber-containing grain products, fruits, and vegetables may reduce the risk of some types of cancer, a disease associated with many factors. 
Replenish: Serious athletes need to replenish the essential vitamins and minerals, in particular the potassium, that are lost during exercise and performance training. One banana can help replenish the potassium, and other vitamins and minerals, lost during one to two hours of intense exercise.
Energy: Bananas combination of carbohydrates, simple sugars and dietary fiber provides energy needed for physical activity.  The Vitamin C and B6 in bananas contributes to the reduction of fatigue.
Red Blood Cell Formation: Vitamin B6 also contributes to red blood cell formation, the reduction of fatigue and transporting iron through the body. 
Bone & Skin Health: Vitamin C in bananas helps develop and maintain skin, bones, cartilage, blood vessels, gums and teeth, while reducing free radicals and protecting cells from oxidative damage.  Bananas also contain 15% of the Daily Value of Manganese. Manganese helps maintain healthy bones and protects cells from oxidative damage.
Maintain Norm. Blood Pressure: Bananas contain 13% of the Daily Value of Potassium. Potassium helps maintain a normal blood pressure (already within normal limits) and muscle function.
Digestive Health: A single serving (one medium-sized banana) also contains 12% of the daily-recommended dietary fiber intake for a normal adult. Fiber has been shown to improve digestive function. The banana is used as the dietary food against intestinal disorders because of its soft texture and smoothness. It is the only raw fruit that can be eaten without distress in over-chronic ulcer cases. It also neutralises over-acidity and reduces irritation by coating the lining of the stomach.
Help Anemia:  High in iron, bananas can stimulate the production of hemoglobin in the blood and so helps in cases of anemia.
Brain Power: 200 students at an English school were helped through their exams this year by eating bananas at breakfast, break and lunch in a bid to boost their brain power. Research has shown that the potassium-packed fruit can assist learning by making pupils more alert.
Reduce Depression: According to a recent survey undertaken by MIND amongst people suffering from depression, many felt much better after eating a banana. This is because bananas contain tryptophan, a type of protein that the body converts into serotonin - known to make you relax, improve your mood and generally make you feel happier.
Heartburn: Bananas have a natural antacid effect in the body so if you suffer from heart-burn, try eating a banana for soothing relief.
Morning Sickness: Snacking on bananas between meals helps to keep blood sugar levels up and avoid morning sickness.
Nerves: Bananas are high in B vitamins that help calm the nervous system.
PMS: The vitamin B6 it contains regulates blood glucose levels, which can affect your mood.

16 Surprising Uses for Bananas: (Note: I have not tried all of these)
1. Treat Damaged Hair. Here is a detailed description of Dr. Oz’s quest for the best damaged hair treatment out there. The results? Bananas! Click here to read Diana’s step-by-step guide treating your hair with bananas.
2. Whiten Teeth. Rub banana peel on your teeth for about two minutes every time you brush and you’ll be well on your way to that perfect smile.
3. Prevent Wrinkles. Check out this recipe for a banana anti-aging mask!
4. Treat Insect Bites. Rub some banana peels on the bites to alleviate the itch.
5. Treat Warts. Bananas are rich in potassium, which is said to help treat warts.
6. Treat Bruises, Cuts, and Scrapes. Potassium also helps with the healing process for cuts, scrapes, and bruises.
7. Get Rid of Splinters. Can’t get that pesky splinter out of your skin? If you press banana peels onto the splinter, the fruit’s natural enzymes will work to get it out.
8. Exfoliate Your Skin. Check out a great banana body sugar rub recipe here.
9. Attract Birds & Butterflies. Like humans, birds and butterflies just love the taste of bananas. If you’d like to watch birds, leave a banana out.
10. Fertilize Your Plants. Dried ground banana peels make a fantastic mulch for seedlings and new plants.
11. Polish Leather & Silver. No need to invest in pricey, and often toxic, leather and silver cleaners. Instead, rub banana peels on the surface and buff with a cloth.
12. Combat Aphids. Nobody likes a damaged plant. Bury some cut up banana peels 2-3 inches deep around the base of the plant.
13. Dog Treat. Bananas are a safe and healthy treat for your beloved pooch!  Mitzie loves them.  :)
14. Purify Water. OK, this is perhaps best left to the professionals, but research has suggested that banana peels can actually absorb toxins in polluted rivers. But, if you ever find yourself lost in the woods with only a banana peel, you’ll be prepared!
15. Make “Ice Cream.” Craving the sweet stuff but don’t have the time, calories, or budget to spare? Simply blend a frozen solid banana in a food processor or blender. You’ll be surprised how much it tastes like soft-serve ice cream! For more info on frozen banana ice cream.
16. Polish Shoes:  You can use the inside of a banana peel to polish patent leather shoes

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Blue Ribbon Winners and Tips for Perfect Layer Cakes

On today's show I shared some of the Blue Ribbon winning recipes from the Kentucky State Fair.  The photo is a banana and black walnut cake perfect for Autumn gatherings.  Enjoy a slice of summer by trying out these Blue Ribbon Winners.  Here are four recipes your family will love:

Phyllis Martin's Autumn Memories Cake
Marolyn Smith's Peach Pie
Trina Amos' Coconut Cream Pie
Kandace Kanzler's Tuscan Crust Pizza

How to: Perfect Layer Cake
This morning I shared that I have trouble with layered cakes.  One Thanksgiving I tried making a layered carrot cake from my mom's recipe that we've used for years.  It's fabulous by the way and I shared the recipe [here].  The cake turned out moist and delicious, and I painstakingly worked with the frosting, assembled the layers, and even inserted dowel rods.  The thing that I didn't consider was that I needed to transport it on a windy road for several miles.  Needless to say, it didn't hold up well, and I haven't attempted a layer cake since.  While no layer cake would probably stand up to the transportation horrors that I put my poor carrot cake through, here are some expert tips I found to help with everything else.

How to: Make the Perfect Layer Cake

Friday, August 24, 2012

Friday Morning Show

Pumpkin Waffles with Maple Walnut Apples
Hello there! I've been neglecting you just a bit, and I'm very sorry about that.  It has been a wonderful week, but a busy one.

Today is Waffle Day!  So in honor of all of that goodness, I found & pinned some recipes on Pinterest this morning.  Here's one of them: Pumpkin Waffles with Maple Walnut Apples!

Monday was 88.5 WJIE Day at the Kentucky State Fair featuring the Newsboys and Sanctus Real.  The concert was incredible!  Both bands did a tremendous job!  If you would like to check out the amazing pics that Carrie our photographer  took, visit our Facebook.

Friday Favorites: I thought I would try something new and begin to share some of my favorite things from this past week.
Here's my top 5:

 1) Favorite Quote: Confidence - I'm loving this quote I pinned this week. It's a great reminder that we are unique for a reason.  Everyone has purpose.  God intended for you to be your exact, lovely self.

2) Favorite Product:  Loving the OrganizHer products offered by Mead!  I found this Fridge Filer the other day and I think it's a brilliant idea for making Fridge clutter a little easier to manage...hopefully.

3) Favorite Recipe: This one also can be found on my Pinterest page.  It's Old Fashioned Pull-Apart Rolls!  I've pinned a lot of great recipes this week, but this one is my fav. because fluffy restaurant-like rolls have always been on my must learn list.

4) Favorite App:  This week I'm liking the Free 1000Memories App which lets you "scan" and touch up old photos or any photo that you don't have a digital copy of by snapping a pic of it with your phone.  Technically you could do this with other apps, but the auto crop suggestions and touch up capabilities make this one a bit different.  When I tried it with one of my favorite photos, the auto crop lined up nearly perfectly on it's own which kind of impressed me.  There aren't any filter or creative editing options; this basically just is a classy scanner.

5) Favorite Energy Booster:  My energy level has been running low this week, but my schedule is still packed so I've been using Gatorade's G Series Energy Chews in Fruit Punch for an extra boost of energy before a workout, etc.  They taste great and seem to work well so far.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Motivation for Monday Fitness: Lack of Will Power

A major obstacle to successful weight loss is a lack of will power and temptation.  Everyone who is serious about getting healthier will run into road blocks at some point.  Today, Bob & Caroline Scott of the Louisville Athletic Club shared some tips for staying on the right track.

Philippians 4:13 - "I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength."

"My first suggestion would be to write this verse down and post it on your refrigerator and your pantry door.  Read it every time you are tempted to open that door and reach for something unhealthy that is going to sabotage your efforts.  Trying to lose weight can be very overwhelming.  So think, "One day at a time."  Even the Bible says in Matthew 6:34, "So don't worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries.  Today's trouble is enough for today."  Stop thinking, "I have to lose twenty, forty, or sixty pounds" and start thinking: "Today, I need to eat healthy.  Today, I need to exercise.  Today, I need to set my sights on losing that first pound." - Caroline Scott

"Also, as you take one day at a time, keep in mind that you are not alone.  Others just like you have been down this road before and emerged with a healthier body and lifestyle.  Most importantly, however, you are not alone because you have Jesus who loves you just the way you are today and will be right beside you on the journey to weight loss.  If you are struggling with will power and temptation right now regarding a weight loss journey, pray for the strength to break your unhealthy habits.  Lay the burden at the feet of Jesus.  In your prayers ask for patience and endurance, and keep your eyes fixed on Him.  He wants you to succeed more than you can ever imagine."  - Bob Scott

For more health and fitness tips, check out Caroline's Blog:

Saturday, August 18, 2012

10 Tips for a Fabulous Workday

Tips for a Fabulous Workday:  Thursday I found an article for tips to have a Fabulous Workday, and I loved it so much that we've been talking about it today.  These are some great ways to keep your work week more positive, but these would be great for any day or even for students.  If you would like to read the full article, check it out {Here}

1. Start with 15 minutes of positive input:
It's easier to achieve and maintain a positive attitude if you already have a "library" of positive thoughts in your head.  This will give you a lot of great inspiration to draw upon throughout your day.  Start each day by reading your Bible, an inspirational book, or an positive thought.  Also listen to encouraging music as you get ready for your day and on your commute.

2. Tie your work to your life's goals:
Always remember that there's a deeper reason why you go to work and why you chose your current role. Maybe it's to support your family, to change the world in some way, to help your customers, to make a difference: Whatever the deeper motivation, remind yourself that today is an opportunity to accomplish part of that deeper and more important goal.

3. Use your commute wisely:
Most people waste their commute time.  In fact, your commute time is the perfect time to get yourself pumped up for the day, and there's no better way to do this than to listen to music that truly inspires you and gets you in the right mood.

4. Put a smile on your face:
I've mentioned this one before, but it really works.  Even if you're not completely feeling it, stick a smile on your face anyway.  It doesn't matter if it feels fake or silly.  Research has shown that even the most forced of smiles genuinely reduces stress and makes you happier.

5. Express a positive mood:
When most people are asked questions like "How are you?" or "What's up?"- they typically say something neutral like "I'm OK" or maybe even something negative, like "Hangin' in there."  Instead we should say something positive and enthusiastic, like: "Fantastic!" or "I'm having a wonderful day!" This will help program your brain for positivity.

6. Do the important things first:
If you will go ahead and do the important things on your list first, you'll get more done, get better results, and reduce some of the stress you feel by putting those things off until later.

7. Avoid negative people.
You may not be able to avoid all negative people, but you can try to find something else to do when they start complaining.  Surrounding yourself with negativity will only bring down your own mood; so start surrounding yourself with positivity and watch your week improve.

8. Don't work long hours.
Working long hours, after a short burst of productivity, actually make you less productive.

9. Wind down and relax.
Once you're done with the workday, fill the remainder of your hours with nonwork-related activities that bring you joy and help you relax.

10. End your day with 15 minutes of gratitude.
Exercising your "gratitude" is the best way to make certain that you experience more success. Before you go to sleep, record everything that happened during the day about which you are grateful.
You'll sleep better and be ready for tomorrow--which will probably be even more fabulous than today.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Fire Dept Tips on How to Store 9V Batteries

I realize that this sounds like it would be a no-brainer, but apparently the toss them in a plastic baggy inside my junk drawer method isn't a great idea.  According to an article on Yahoo! News, a family in Amherst, New Hampshire experienced a house fire that was started by a 9-volt battery in a junk drawer.  The New Hampshire Fire Marshall is warning people to re-evaluate what they keep in their junk drawers.
"The potential is there," Londonderry, New Hampshire, Fire Chief Kevin MacCaffrie told CBS News in Boston. "There are a lot of things in a normal junk drawer that do burn, and apparently the ignition source was a 9 volt battery." 
The fire in Amherst was started because of a 9V Battery stored inside a plastic baggy filled with other batteries.  The family said the junk drawer had just been reorganized and also contained spare keys, a lighter, paper clips, eye glass cleaner, and other things that could either cause the battery to spark or the fire to spread.  Thankfully these home owners did not lose everything, but the fire could have been much worse.
"The 9 volt battery rubbed against another battery and ignited the fire," the statement read. The fire spread to Post-It Notes, paper, and other flammable items in the drawer and "produced smoke throughout the first floor of the home." 
The Fire Chief says that if you must keep your regular, rectangular 9 volt batteries in your junk drawer, the best way to prevent them from sparking a fire is to either wrap the ends in electrical tape or keep them in their original packages.  Here's a quote from the article
"When it comes to those regular, rectangular 9 volt batteries, the problem is that both the positive and the negative contact points are on the same end. If those contact points touch a paper clip, a key, or the clip on a pen, it can generate heat; leave it there long enough and it could start a fire.   Chief MacCafferie demonstrated how a paper clip touching the contact points of a 9 volt battery could scorch a square of tissue in minutes. A wad of steel wool glowed orange and set paper on fire in just seconds when it rubbed up against a 9 volt battery." 
Here are a few other reminders from the Los Angeles Fire Dept about several other common household items that can turn into fire hazards:

  • Electrical outlets, when overloaded with extension cords
  • Lithium batteries, when stored in the same place as clothing
  • Clothes dryers, when too much lint gets caught in the vent or filter
  • Space heaters, when placed too close to curtains, sheets, or other flammable materials
  • Overheated laptop computers, when left on soft surfaces (like a bed or a tablecloth)
  • Extra gasoline cans, when stored near dirty rags in the garage
  • Fireplaces, when there is too much soot build-up

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Simple Diabetes Prevention Tips:

Diabetes Prevention:  
Several people in my family have developed diabetes so I want to stay on the defense in my own life.  Stats show that nearly 25% of Americans are thought to have pre-diabetes which means they are living with slightly elevated blood sugar levels that often develops into diabetes within 10 years if they don't change their lifestyle.  Of those 25%, only 4% realize that they are at risk of developing diabetes.  That being said, I was super excited when I found out that there are simple ways to prevent diabetes.  I'm finding that it's much easier for me to take smaller, easy to remember steps towards a healthier life than to try to change everything at once.

Easy Diabetes Prevention Tips: 
from Women's Health Magazine.

Add Weights:  Upping your lean muscle mass could lower your insulin resistance and drop your odds of developing prediabetes, according to a new study in The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism. Researchers found that for every 10 percent increase in muscle mass, people's prediabetes risk fell by 12 percent. Build three days of resistance training into your weekly fitness plan, says Sheri Colberg-Ochs, Ph.D., a professor of exercise science at Old Dominion University. Also aim for at least two and a half hours a week of glucose-burning cardio activity such as running, cycling, or swimming.

Sleep:  Yes, preventing diabetes can be as easy as getting enough sleep.  Long-term sleep deprivation may amp up the body's insulin resistance, especially in people genetically predisposed to diabetes. A preliminary University of Chicago study found that those who regularly snoozed fewer than six hours a night were at the highest risk. Try to get at least seven hours of shut-eye each evening.  Another study at Yale University of 1,709 men found that those who regularly got less than 6 hours of sleep doubled their diabetes risk; those who slept more than 8 hours tripled their odds. Previous studies have turned up similar findings in women. "When you sleep too little or too long because of sleep apnea, your nervous system stays on alert," says lead researcher Klar Yaggi, MD, an assistant professor of pulmonary medicine at Yale.

RELAX:  Right there with sleep, relaxing will help keep diabetes at bay.  Chronic stress is a risk factor for many major diseases, including diabetes. "When your body senses stress, it releases hormones that increase blood sugar," says Colberg-Ochs. That rush is beneficial in a pinch but dangerous long-term.  The good news is, simple relaxation exercises and other stress management moves can help you gain control over blood sugar levels, according to a study conducted at Duke University.

Eat Fiber: Fiber isn't just good for digestion, it also curbs post-meal sugar spikes by slowing down the flow of glucose into the bloodstream. So when you crave something sweet, opt for fiber-rich fruit such as raspberries or pears. And consider adding brown rice to your diet: Eating two or more servings a week lowers diabetes risk by 11 percent, says an Archives of Internal Medicine study.

Omega-3s: Here's another great reason to enjoy fish.  The omega-3 fatty acids found in foods like oily fish (wild salmon, sardines) can help improve insulin sensitivity. Eat at least one serving of such seafood a week.

Vitamin D:  The Sunshine vitamin will also help prevent diabetes.  In fact it may be a key factor in the fight against diabetes. A review published in The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism found that people with high vitamin-D levels were less likely to develop type 2. Take 1,000 to 2,000 IU a day through dairy foods, fatty fish, or supplements.

Cinnamon:  Cinnamon may be an ace at lowering blood sugar levels, says research in the Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine. Rich in nutrients called polyphenols, the sweet spice may help insulin do its job more effectively. Sprinkle some into your morning joe or mix it into an oatmeal snack. German researchers studied 65 adults with type 2 diabetes who then took a capsule containing the equivalent of 1 g of cinnamon powder or a placebo 3 times a day for 4 months. By the end, cinnamon reduced blood sugar by about 10%; the placebo users improved by only 4%. Why? Compounds in cinnamon may activate enzymes that stimulate insulin receptors. The sweet spice has also been shown to help lower cholesterol and triglycerides, blood fats that may contribute to diabetes risk.

Lose a Little: Shedding even 10 pounds can significantly slash your risk.  Even extremely overweight people were 70% less likely to develop diabetes when they lost just 5% of their weight—even if they didn't exercise. If you weigh 175 pounds, that’s a little less than 9 pounds! Use a calorie calculator to see how many calories you consume and how many you need to shave off your diet—if you want to lose a little.

Choose a Better Appetizer: Try a salad. Eating greens with a vinaigrette before a starchy entrée may help control your blood sugar levels. In an Arizona State University study, people with type 2 diabetes or a precursor condition called insulin resistance had lower blood sugar levels if they consumed about 2 tablespoons of vinegar just before a high-carb meal. "Vinegar contains acetic acid, which may inactivate certain starch-digesting enzymes, slowing carbohydrate digestion," says lead researcher Carol Johnston, PhD. In fact, vinegar’s effects may be similar to those of the blood sugar—lowering medication acarbose (Precose). 

Walk:  Walk as much as you can every day. You'll be healthier even if you don't lose any weight.  People in a Finnish study who exercised the most—up to 4 hours a week, or about 35 minutes a day, dropped their risk of diabetes by 80%, even if they didn’t lose any weight. This pattern holds up in study after study: The famed Nurses' Health Study, for example, found that women who worked up a sweat more than once a week reduced their risk of developing diabetes by 30%. And Chinese researchers determined that people with high blood sugar who engaged in moderate exercise (and made other lifestyle changes) were 40% less likely to develop full-blown diabetes. Why is walking so wonderful? Studies show that exercise helps your body utilize the hormone insulin more efficiently by increasing the number of insulin receptors on your cells. Insulin helps blood sugar move into cells, where it needs to go to provide energy and nutrition. Otherwise it just sloshes around in your bloodstream, gumming up blood vessel walls and eventually causing serious health problems.

Drink Coffee:  Love this one.  After they studied 126,210 women and men, researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health found that big-time coffee drinkers—those who downed more than 6 daily cups—had a 29 to 54% lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes during the 18-year study. Sipping 4 to 5 cups cut risk about 29%; 1 to 3 cups per day had little effect. Decaf coffee offered no protection. Caffeine in other forms (tea, soda, chocolate) did.   Researchers suspect that caffeine may help by boosting metabolism. And coffee, the major caffeine source in the study, also contains potassium, magnesium, and antioxidants that help cells absorb sugar. But before you become a VIP at Dunkin Donuts, remember that a medium chain-store cuppa is about 14 to 16 ounces—that's 2 "cups" by standard measures.

Avoid the Drive-thru:  That's what University of Minnesota scientists found after they studied 3,000 people, ages 18-30, for 15 years. At the start, everyone was at a normal weight. But those who ate fast food more than twice a week gained 10 more pounds and developed twice the rate of insulin resistance (the two major risk factors for type 2 diabetes) compared with those who indulged less than once a week.

Veg Out:  Eat veggies more often than not, and consider red meat a treat and not for every day.  Women who ate red meat at least 5 times a week had a 29% higher risk of type 2 diabetes than those who ate it less than once a week according to a 37,000-woman study at Brigham and Women's Hospital. Eating processed meats such as bacon and hot dogs at least 5 times a week raised type 2 diabetes risk by 43%, compared with eating them less than once a week.

Hang Out:  Women who live alone are 2.5 times more likely to develop diabetes than women who live with a spouse, roommate, or children, according to a study published in Diabetes Care. Researchers examined what role household status played in the progression of impaired glucose tolerance to diabetes among 461 women, ages 50 to 64, and found higher risk among women living alone.  But don't freak out if you live solo: Lifestyle factors could explain this finding. Women who lived alone were also more likely to smoke and less likely to have healthy dietary habits.  The solution would be to make sure you are spending time with friends and/or family who will help keep you make healthier choices.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Blueberry Cornbread Tuesday

It's Blueberry Tuesday!  I almost forgot to post a recipe... again.  Sorry about that.  Here's my confession.  I love cornbread.  I always have.  Second confession: I'm not normally a fan of sweet cornbread.  However, this recipe has me curious.  I may have to try this one.  What do you think?  If you try this first, let me know how it turns out.

Blueberry Cornbread

Live Longer. Live Well.

This morning you may have heard a new song by Matthew West off of his album, Into the Light which will be out this Fall.  It's a powerful video about the story of a mother who lost a daughter.  Listen to the full song by clicking this [link] for the music video that includes song lyrics.  Here is the story behind Matthew West's latest song, "Forgiveness."  


Live Longer... It's easy!
Today on the air, I'll be sharing tips on some simple things that will add years to your life.  I'll probably have to add to the list as I go.  So check back if you like.

Laughter:  This is my favorite.  The Bible tells us that "a cheerful heart is good like medicine.." (Prov 17:22), but if that's not proof enough for you then check out this study from the University of Maryland.  It says that watching 15 minutes of funny video can improve bloodflow to your heart by 50 percent. "This may reduce blood-clot formation, cholesterol deposition, and inflammation," says study author Michael Miller, M.D.

Eat Breakfast:  Or rather eat breakfast within the first 90 minutes after waking.  A University of Massachusetts study found that men who waited longer than that were 50 percent more likely to keep your weight down, and U.K. researchers determined that you would be less likely to develop cancer.

Air Freshener:  Yup, air freshener will extend your life.  Weird, I know, but studies show the strong, spicy smell of cinnamon can help you stay alert as you drive. Researchers at Wheeling Jesuit University found that a whiff increases alertness by 25 percent. Eating an Altoid may work, too.

H2O:  Who knew that living long could be as simple as drinking a bit more water.  Scientists at Loma Linda University found that men who drank 5-8oz glasses of H2O were 54 percent less likely to suffer a fatal heart attack than those who drank two glasses or less every day.

Don't work Sick:  You're co-workers will thank me for sharing this one.  Over a 3-year period, men who clocked in despite feeling under the weather had double the heart-attack risk of guys who stayed in bed, according to a U.K. study.

Eat Chocolate:  See, I told you a longer life expectancy was a piece of cake.  Well, as long as it's chocolate cake.  In a 15-year study, Dutch scientists determined that those who ate just 4 grams of cocoa a day had half the risk of dying from heart disease than those who ate less. That's the equivalent of two 25-calorie Hershey's Kisses--an amount that can fit into any diet.  Yep, you're welcome.  

Alka-Seltzer: In case of emergency, keep a few of these on hand.  Here's why.  If you think you're having a heart attack. It contains 325 milligrams of aspirin, the same as a regular aspirin, and begins fighting blood clots almost 3 minutes faster than a pill, according to a study in Thrombosis Research.

Eat yo' Veggies:  Mom was right; you should eat your fruit and veggies at every meal.  If you consume more than five servings of fruits and vegetables per day, you have a 26 percent lower risk of stroke than people who eat fewer than three servings, according to a recent U.K. study.

MORE to come...

Monday, August 13, 2012

Motivation for Mon Fitness: Coconut Oil

Motivation for Monday Fit Tip:
Bob & Caroline Scott of the Louisville Athletic Club have often spoke about the importance of including "good fat" in our diets, some of which can come from oils.  Today they shared their thoughts on Coconut Oil.

"For so many years, we were told to eat no fat, low fat, but good fats from oils are actually essential to a healthy diet.  You can get some of those good fats from coconut oil.  Here are some of the benefits:
  • Hair Care: Coconut Oil helps in the healthy growth of hair, making it more shiny and preventing dandruff.
  • Stress Relief: Coconut oil is very soothing and helps relieve stress and mental fatigue. 
  • Skin Care: It's excellent for the skin as well.  It acts as an effective moisturizer on all types including dry skin.  It can be used just like lotions, creams, etc that are used for skin care.
  • Premature Aging: Coconut oil helps in preventing premature aging.
  • Heart Diseases: The saturated fat in coconut oil is beneficial for the heart.  It helps in preventing various heart problems including heart burn, high cholesterol levels, and high blood pressure.
  • Weight Loss:  Coconut oil is very useful in reducing weight.  It contains short & medium-chain fatty acids that help in taking off excessive weight.
  • Pancreatitis: Coconut oil is also very useful in treating pancreatitis.
  • Digestion:  Coconut oil helps in improving the digestive system and thus prevents various stomach & digestion related problems including irritable bowel syndrome."
-Caroline Scott of the Louisville Athletic Club 
More Benefits of Coconut Oil from Bob Scott, Louisville Athletic Club:

  • Immunity: Coconut oil is good for the immune system and helps fight off diseases and sickness.
  • Healing:  When applied on infections, it forms a chemical layer which protects the infected body part from external dust, air, fungi, bacteria, and virus
  • Infections: Coconut oil is very effective against a variety of infections due to its antifungal, antiviral, and antibacterial properties.
  • Liver: It helps reduce the work load on the liver and also prevents the accumulation of fat on the liver.
  • Kidney: Coconut oil helps in preventing kidney and gall bladder diseases.  It also helps in dissolving kidney stones.
  • Diabetes: Coconut oil helps control blood sugar, and improves the secretion of insulin.
  • Bones: Coconut oil improves the ability of our body to absorb important minerals.  These include calcium and magnesium which are necessary for development of bones.
  • Dental Care:  Coconut oil helps in the prevention of tooth decay.
"We buy the Organic Spectrum Brand.  It comes in a solid form, but can be used in sauteing and baking in a liquid form.  You can also top your food with it for added nutrition" - Bob Scott Louisville Athletic Club
For more health and fitness tips, check out Caroline's Blog:

Friday, August 10, 2012

S'more Day!

S'more Cookie Bars
Today's Fact or Fiction was about S'mores!  Here are some recipes to help you celebrate:

S’More Cookie Bars
S'mores Cookies
S'more Brownies
White Chocolate S'more Bars

Summer Stain Busters

Summer Stain Busters:
Earlier this Summer I shared some tips for removing Common Cookout Stains.  Today, I shared a few more on-air so here is a recap.  I haven't tried these yet, but I did find them on Good Housekeeping which I consider reliable.  I'll be trying them along with you.  Let me know how they work if you try them before I do.

Berry Stains: Berries can leave hard-to-remove stains on fabric. To deal, immediately sponge the spot with cool water. Later, stretch the stained cloth over a bowl or pot in the sink. Hold a kettle of boiling water at least 12 inches above the fabric and pour the water through the stain. The mark should disappear. If not, sponge it with rubbing alcohol before tossing the item in the machine to wash.  

Grass Stains: Super common, and super difficult to remove.  Your best line of defense is an enzyme-based liquid laundry detergent like Arm & Hammer, because the enzymes target protein-based stains. Rub a little of the detergent into the stain. Wash the items in the hottest water that's safe for the fabric and use chlorine bleach if the garment label says you can.

Sap Stains: I've only actually gotten sap on my clothing once at Christmas when my family picked out a real Christmas tree.  So this one is probably more Christmas appropriate, but here's what you do.  First, pre-treat the stain and wash the clothing in the warmest water with the type of bleach that's safe for the fabric. Before you toss the item in the dryer, make sure all the sap's been removed. Heat from the dryer could soften any sap that's still there and transfer it to other items in the load. If any sap remains, sponge the stain with rubbing alcohol and wash again.

Pollen Stains: The worst thing you can do when this happens is to dab the stain with water. Even brushing them off with your hand can push the powder deeper into the fabric. Instead, carefully shake the material (bend over, if you have to) so the loose particles fall off. If any are still clinging, gently blot them with a piece of tape or use a handheld vacuum cleaner to coax them out of the fabric. If you still see a yellow stain, place it face down on a piece of paper towel, dab the stain from the back with a dry-cleaning fluid and frequently rotate the paper towel to a clean area as it absorbs the stain. Treat the stain with a laundry pre-spotter and wash in the hottest water and type of bleach that is safe for the garment, or take the item to the dry cleaner.

Salsa Stains:  Place a layer of paper towels over the stain. Working from the inside of the fabric, flush the area with cold water to transfer some of the salsa to the towel. Once you're home, pre-treat with a liquid laundry detergent to break up the stain. Let sit for several minutes, then rinse well. Sponge the stain with white vinegar and rinse. Pre-treat again and wash. The same technique works for ketchup smears.

Guacamole Stains: Simply scrape off the excess guacamole, and flush the stain with cold running water. Then wash the item in the hottest water safe for the material with all-fabric bleach.

Butter Stains:  Butter is greasy and difficult to remove.  Sprinkle sugar on the stain and pat it in to absorb the grease. Let it sit for a few minutes, then brush the sugar off. When you get home, treat the area with a stain remover, and wash in the hottest water possible. You can also use this approach for any mayonnaise-based foods, like potato salad or coleslaw.

Salad Dressing Stains: Act fast with this one! Immediately sop up any excess dressing with a dry napkin, or scrape it off with a clean spoon. Another trick: Grab a packet of sugar and sprinkle it on to soak up the blob (shake off the grains before you leave the table). No matter what the fabric, when you get home, sponge the stain with a dry cleaning solvent. Take dry clean-only garments to the shop ASAP. For washables, apply pre-wash stain treatment and launder as usual.

Grease Stains:  If a bit of grease dripped from a burger onto your clothes, blot the stain with a small piece of the bun. When you get home, rub the stain with a grease-cutting liquid dishwashing soap, like Dawn, and launder in the warmest water possible.

Tea Stains:  The good news is that iced tea won't set into the fabric as quickly as hot tea. Simply take an ice cube and rub it over the stain. Then pat the area with dry paper napkins. When you get home, treat the stain with a laundry pre-treater or some liquid laundry detergent and wash as usual, adding a little bleach if appropriate for the fabric.

Baked Beans Stains: Scoop off as much of the baked beans as possible with a clean spoon. Flush the stain with cold water for the time being. When you get home, pre-treat with a pre-wash stain remover and launder as usual.

Ice Cream Stains: If little drips get on your little one’s clothes, pre-treat or soak the fabric using a laundry detergent that contains enzymes for at least 30 minutes and launder.

Sunscreen Stains:  It's inevitable that this summer staple is going to end up on your beach towel, bathing suit, or shorts. When that happens, remove as much of the excess sunscreen as you can by dousing the fabric with sand. Sand will cause the lotion to clump, making it easier to roll it off without pressing it into the fibers. After you get home, apply a pre-wash remover wash the stained items in the hottest water that's safe for the fabric.

Sweat Stains: Discoloration (i.e. pit stains) is caused when sweat and antiperspirant build up on fabric. First, rinse stains for 15 seconds with cool water to dilute trapped salts and acid. Work in some enzyme-containing liquid laundry detergent; let it sit for 15 minutes. Wash in the hottest water that is safe for the fabric, with fabric-safe bleach. 

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Backyard Roller Coaster: Morning Show Highlights

Backyard Roller Coaster: (Article)
A couple in Lancaster, Ohio built a backyard roller coaster for their children in 2009 on whim.  What do you think?

Here's the Video:

Monday, August 6, 2012

Motivation for Mon Fitness: Lemon H2O & Meatless Mon

Benefits of Lemon Water: Mon Fit Tip
In this extremely hot weather, staying hydrated and drinking lots of water is so important.  However, some of us, myself included, get bored with plain old water and prefer to add something like lemon to it.  This morning Bob and Caroline Scott of the Louisville Athletic Club shared some of the benefits of Lemon Water.
"Drinking water is one of the best things you can do for your health, but if you add some lemon to it you can boost health benefits even more.  Here are some of the reasons:
  • Good for Stomach: Lemon can help relieve many digestion problems when mixed with warm water, including nausea and heartburn. 
  •  Excellent for Skin Care: It rejuvenates your skin from within and thus bringing a glow on your face.  Daily consumption of lemon water can make a huge difference in the appearance of your skin.  It acts as an anti-aging remedy and can remove wrinkles.
  • Aids in Dental Care: If fresh lemon juice is applied on the areas of toothache, it can assist in getting rid of the pain.  The massages of lemon juice on gums can stop gum bleeding.
  • Cures Throat Infections: Lemon is an excellent fruit that aids in fighting problems related to throat infections and sore throats because of its antibacterial properties." - Caroline Scott, LAC

More Benefits of Lemon Water:

  • Weight Loss: One of the major health benefits of drinking lemon water is that it aids in wight loss.  Fresh lemon juice mixed with lukewarm water and honey can reduce body weight as well.
  • High Blood Pressure: Lemon water works wonders for people having heart problems, because of its high potassium content.  It controls blood pressure, dizziness, nausea as well as provides relaxation to mind and body.  It also reduces mental stress and depression.
  • Assists in curing Respiratory Disorders:  Lemon water assists in curing respiratory problems along with breathing problems and revives a person suffering with asthma.
  • Good for treating Rheumatism:  Lemon is also a diuretic and hence lemon water can treat rheumatism and arthritis.  It helps to flush out bacteria and toxins out of the body.
  • Reduces Fever:  Lemon water can treat a person who is suffering from a cold, flu or fever.  It helps to break fever by increasing perspiration.
For more health and fitness tips, check out Caroline's Blog:

Meatless Monday Revisited:
I thought I would revisit Meatless Mondays.  I think it is something that I would like to begin to do on a regular basis.  So I will share more meatless recipe options as I come across them.  Here are a couple of ideas that I found this morning.  The first includes asparagus which is one of my least favorite veggies, but the dish looks so lovely I may have to give it another try.  The second recipe is for Red Pepper Hummus which is one of my favorite snacks.  If you've never had hummus, it tastes like bean dip - very good.

Pasta with Lemon Cream Sauce Asparagus and Peas
Red Pepper Hummus

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Healthy Grab & Go Breakfast Ideas: Saturday Show

Healthy Grab & Go Breakfast Ideas:  School will be starting soon, here are some great ideas to speed up your morning routine.  Bob & Caroline Scott of the Louisville Athletic Club have shared some great information about some of these on their Motivation for the Monday Fitness.  I will add links to those posts as well.  You can also find some great recipe ideas on my recipe blog.

Breakfast Idea #1: Muffins and quick bread
Surprised to see muffins on a list of healthy breakfasts? Homemade muffins are a much better choice than the prepackaged variety. If you make them yourself, you control what goes in them which means you can load them up with healthy fruits, protein-packed nuts, and whole-grain flours that will help you feel satisfied till lunch.There are hundreds of quick bread and muffin recipes out there, from apple-cinnamon to peanut-butter-and-jelly. Not a fan of sweet food in the morning? Look for savory recipes, like spinach-pesto muffins, cornbread with jalapeños, or bacon and cheddar muffins. Both muffins and slices of quick bread freeze and reheat beautifully: While they're still fresh (but cooled), store them in a zip-lock bag or a Tupperware container in the freezer. On a busy morning, pull out as many as you need, pop them in the microwave for 30 seconds or a minute, and enjoy.  Check out these Muffin & Bread Recipes

Breakfast Idea #2: Smoothies
Smoothies are a great way to sneak in more servings of fruit and vegetables.   Protein powder can also be added to add even more health benefits. At their core, smoothies are just blended fresh or frozen fruit, but that doesn't mean you have to stop there. Try adding Greek yogurt for extra creaminess and a protein boost, soy or almond milk for nondairy smoothness, or even a big spoonful of peanut butter (my fav).  It's easy to get out the blender on a weekend, blend up a big batch, and pour the smoothies into individual cups. Then stick them in the fridge or freezer and pull them out on busy mornings. After a quick stir or shake, they'll be ready to enjoy.  Or invest in an immersion blender, most models come with a plastic cup to blend in, which makes it easy to make a couple of smoothies without getting out a big appliance.  Tip: Add a big handful of washed spinach to your smoothie.  I know it sounds gross at first.  It did to me too, but I tried it in a blueberry smoothie and you couldn't even taste it was in there.  You can still see the greens a bit though so if you are using this idea to get more greens in your kiddos diets, use a opaque travel cup and they may never pick up on your secret ingredient.  Check this link for more great tips: Healthy Smoothies, More Smoothie Recipes

Breakfast Idea #3: Quiches and Frittatas
This is one of my favorite foods, but to keep it healthy use Skim or 1% milk instead of cream and low fat cheese.  These recipes are great for when you want eggs for breakfast but don't have the time.  Plus, quiches can be frozen.  Bake a quiche or frittata (the Italian, crustless version of a quiche) on the weekend and eat slices for breakfast all week, or wrap very well and freeze them for up to a month.  Baked eggs reheat just fine, and they're also great cold if you're out running errands and don't have easy access to a microwave.  Although I've never really been a fan of cold eggs.  There are plenty of recipes out there, but you may not even need one. For an easy frittata, just preheat the oven to 350 degrees and heat some oil or butter in an oven-safe skillet. Then crack eggs into a large bowl and add any mix-ins you'd like (chopped bell pepper, green onions, spinach, cooked sausage, salt and pepper, goat cheese, etc.). You can even cook bacon or sauté onions in the skillet before adding the eggs for an extra burst of flavor. Pour the egg mixture into the pan, cook on the stove until the bottom is starting to set, and transfer to the oven until it's cooked all the way through. Then let cool, cut into individual serving sizes, and store in the fridge until you're ready to eat.  Tip: Like the idea of muffins but want the protein of eggs? Instead of cooking the eggs in a skillet, pour the egg mixture into muffin tins and bake until cooked through. Then let cool and pop the mini-frittatas out for great individually sized breakfast dishes.  Check out these links for more tips: All about Eggs, Motivation for Monday Fitness: Eggs

Breakfast Idea #4: Oatmeal
I've talked about Oatmeal before, because I love it so much.  Oatmeal is creamy, warm, delicious, packed with fiber to keep you full, but it can be way too slow for really busy mornings. Rather than turning to the instant variety (or skipping breakfast altogether), make a big batch of old-fashioned or steel-cut oats on the weekends to eat throughout the week. You can even store the oatmeal in small microwave-safe containers that you can heat and eat without getting a bowl dirty.  You may need to add a splash of milk or water.  It can get thick after it sits.  Another option that I do, is I will measure out Old Fashion Oats in a microwave container, walnuts, brown sugar, fresh fruit, cinnamon, a bit of vanilla, and then seal it.  I've set the container in the fridge overnight.  The next morning all I have to do is add the water or milk and pop the container in the microwave for less than a minute.  This method avoids the left over feel and I saved time chopping fruit and measuring everything out.  If normal oatmeal sounds too boring, try cooking quinoa or brown rice with milk and water and heating up the leftovers as hot cereal in the morning. Baked oatmeal is also a super tasty way to make a healthy breakfast ahead of time.  Tip: If you have a rice cooker or slow cooker with a timer, you can set up your oatmeal before bed, turn on the timer, and wake up to fresh, delicious oatmeal in the morning.  Check out this link for more great tips: Oatmeal

Breakfast Idea #5: Yogurt Parfaits
Parfaits are easier, healthier, and way cheaper to make at home.  Simply buy some yogurt (Greek yogurt is a great choice, since it has plenty of protein.  The consistency varies some are very thick; find a brand that you enjoy), some granola, and whatever fruit is in season. Then, in individual cups or bowls, layer the fruit and yogurt, plus some honey or other sweetener if your yogurt is unsweetened. You can layer the granola in with the fruit and yogurt if you don't mind it getting soft, or leave some room at the top to pour in the granola later.  I usually put the granola in a ziplock bag.  Tip: If you have a favorite fruit that's not in season, buy the frozen variety at the grocery store.  I actually love frozen berries and they have just as many health benefits if not more since they were picked and frozen when they were perfectly rippened.

Breakfast Idea # 6: Homemade Granola Bars
If you're a fan of wrapped cereal bars for their convenience but not their nutrition, try whipping up a batch of homemade granola bars. Just as with muffins, making granola bars at home means you control what goes in them.  They don't have to be packed with sugar and other unhealthy ingredients.  There are tons of granola bar recipes out there. Many of them don't require baking. Once the granola bars are ready, cut them into slices, put them in plastic bags or food storage containers, and stash in the fridge or freezer. Then pull a few out on your way out the door.  Unlike some other breakfast options, most granola bars keep just fine at room temperature.  Although if you'll be keeping them for days or weeks, they'll taste better if they stay cool.  Tip: Granola bars make great gifts, especially if you get creative with wrapping them.  Try this recipe for the Almond Grab & Go Power Bar

Breakfast Idea # 7: Breakfast Sandwiches or Burritos
You don't have to limit sandwiches and burritos to lunchtime. Egg sandwiches and wraps are really good and often very quickly prepared.  Especially when you can just reheat frozen ones.  Take an hour or two on a weekend to scramble or fry a bunch of eggs and add them to tortillas, English muffins, or bagels. Top with other delicious ingredients (cooked bacon or sausage, cheese, salsa, etc.), wrap tightly in saran wrap or aluminum foil, and freeze. Then just pull one out in the morning, take off the wrapper, and microwave for a minute or two for a hearty, protein-packed breakfast.  Tip: If you find that your burritos get a little dry when reheated, try wrapping them in a damp paper towel before microwaving them, or plan to eat with extra salsa.

Breakfast Idea #8: Hard-Boiled Eggs
Simple hard-boiled eggs are a great breakfast option.  As Bob and Caroline have mentioned before on their Motivation for Monday Fitness, they're portable, nutritious, and full of protein, and they come naturally individually wrapped.  Celebrity chef Alton Brown suggests cooking hard-boiled eggs in an electric kettle. Just put the eggs in the bottom, fill with water, and turn on. When the kettle boils and turns itself off, set a timer for 12 minutes. Then pull the eggs out, cool in a bowl of ice water, and transfer to the fridge. Easy, fast, and no extra pot to wash. 

Breakfast Ideas #9: Banana Wraps
Do the kids like PB& J?  Try spreading some peanut or almond butter on a brown rice tortilla, add a peeled banana, and roll up.  It's an instant, portable, and nutritious breakfast that is ready in about a minute.  Tip: For a touch of sweetness, add a drizzle of honey.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Thursday Morning Show Highlights: Ice Cream Sandwiches & Fire Rainbows

Ice Cream Sandwich Day:
Happy Ice Cream Sandwich Day!  June, one of our fabulous listeners, called in about a recipe she makes with Ice Cream Sandwiches.  I've listed it below.  I did some research and hopefully the photo I found online is close to what June's delicious recipe looks like.

June's Easy Ice Cream Sandwich Dessert
rectangular 9x13 pan
24 store-bought frozen ice cream sandwiches
2 regular-sized tubs of Cool Whip
Caramel sauce
Chocolate Ice Cream Topping
1 bag of Heath Topping

1. Spray pan with cooking spray. Layer 12 ice cream sandwiches side-by-side in bottom of pan.
2. Spread one tub of Cool Whip over the top of the sandwiches. Drizzle caramel and chocolate syrups over the top of the Cool Whip and then sprinkle with Heath Topping. Place in the freezer for about an hour.
3. Layer 2nd level of 12 ice cream sandwiches on top of the toffee bits. Spread with 2nd tub of Cool Whip. Drizzle caramel and chocolate syrup over the Cool Whip. Sprinkle Heath Topping over the top. Place in freezer for several hours until firm.
4. When ready to serve, remove from freezer and use sharp knife to cut into squares.

Fire Rainbow: (News Article)
This is the photo that I was asking Meteorologist Randy Ollis about today.  It is a Fire Rainbow was spotted over South Florida. He will be talking more about this tomorrow morning before the joke of the day at 7:50 am.

Fact or Fiction:
Tomorrow's prize for Fact or Fiction will be 2 passes to Rock the World Christian Music Fest in Holiday World on Saturday Aug 25 featuring Jeremy Camp, Tenth Ave North and Barlow Girl.  Listen weekday mornings at 7:20 am for your chance to win on 88.5 WJIE!