Category Archives: Healthy Living

The Beaumont Blog Has Moved!

 

beaumont blog has moved

The Beaumont Health System blog has moved to a new address: blog.beaumont.edu. We’ll continue to publish the articles you’ve come to enjoy, along with new and improved features and content throughout the months.

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10 superfoods for under $15

So you’ve heard of superfoods – but how can you buy healthy foods without breaking the bank? Never fear! We’ve got a roundup of 10 superfoods for under $15:

Beans

SuperfoodsOne of the cheapest superfoods available is also one of the most delicious: beans. The humble bean is high in protein, antioxidants, and fiber – meaning you’ll stay full for longer. Cut calories without feeling deprived with a spicy dip (with black beans), a crisp salad (with white or garbanzo beans), or a hearty chili (with any combination of beans you can imagine!). Garbanzo and white beans can even be pureed and combined with traditionally fatty favorites like mashed potatoes or ricotta cheese for a lower-calorie option that doesn’t sacrifice taste. Add 2 cans of beans to your cart for between $1-2.

Kale

This superfood is favored both by nutritionists and trendy high-end eateries. Kale is full of fiber, calcium, and heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids which support your body’s natural detox system. Kale is also a great source of potassium, iron, and manganese, as well as vitamins A, C, and K. This hearty green pairs with just about anything, but it especially shines with sweet potato, lemon, or garlic. Whether dressed in a beautiful salad, added to a veggie frittata, or simply sautéed in olive oil, kale is as easy to prepare as it is on your wallet. Add 1 bunch of kale to your cart (about 2-4 cups, depending) for under $1.

Sweet Potatoes

Replacing your usual white potatoes with their orange, sugary-fleshed cousins will not only save you calories and carbs, but introduce more fiber – and color! – into your meal. Regular potatoes clock in at twice the starch levels as the same serving of sweet potatoes. Bonus round: sweet potatoes get their rich orange hue from beta-carotene, the same chemical compound found in carrots—good for vision, immunity, and overall health. Roast sweet potatoes whole, or add to pastas, grain salads, omelets, and more. Sweet potato hash browns make any breakfast better! Add 2 sweet potatoes (about 2 pounds) to your cart for less than $1.

Eggs

One egg will cost you 70 calories and about 20 cents – not bad for a food that’s loaded with protein, vision-enhancing antioxidants, and choline, a vitamin shown to promote brain health. Scrambled, poached, or hard-boiled, an egg is a great way to start your day (or end it!). Mix with veggies and greens for a wholesome omelet or frittata, or top plain scrambled eggs with salsa, onion, and avocado for a Mexican-inspired meal. Most of the health benefits of the egg are in their yolks – so stick to 7 whole eggs or fewer each week to keep cholesterol in check. Add 1 dozen eggs to your cart for $2.

Oatmeal

This old standby gets a bad rap for being too boring – but come breakfast time, you won’t find better than this protein-packed grain! Oatmeal is one of the highest natural sources of soluble fiber, which keeps blood sugar from rising too quickly and can help rid the body of excess cholesterol. Rolled oats are packed with inflammation-reducing flavonoids, not to mention zinc, magnesium and iron – essential minerals that boost your immune system. Jazz up your morning oats with fresh fruit, cinnamon, and honey; or, try substituting rolled oats in your favorite baked goods and breaded meats. Add 1 box of rolled oats to your cart for $2.

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5 Ways to Train Like an Olympic Athlete

5 Ways To TrainThe 2014 Winter Games are underway in Sochi. Have you ever wondered how an Olympic athlete trains and prepares for their shot at a gold medal? James Bicos, M.D., Orthopedic Surgeon & Sports Medicine Specialist; consulting physician for the USA Olympic Gymnastics team and Barry Franklin, Ph.D., Director of Cardiac Rehabilitation share five tips on training like the world’s best athletes:

1. Set a goal and stick with it. “For many Olympic athletes, this is a lifetime of work for them. It consisted of setting goals, meeting those goals, and then setting new ones to aspire to be the best,” says Dr. Bicos. You can do this with all parts of your life. Just remember that not reaching your goal is NOT a failure. Evaluate what happened, make changes and try again!

2. Be healthy! The saying “We are what we eat” has some truth to it.  Stay away from fatty foods, junk food and caffeinated/carbonated beverages. Don’t rely on fad diets – if it is too good to be true, it probably is.  You are better off eating a well-rounded diet, coupled with a good exercise regimen.

3. See your physician! Endurance exercise, especially when vigorous, is a double-edged sword: it both protects against and can trigger cardiac events. Cardiac events are likely triggered by undetected cardiovascular disease, most notably, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy or clogged coronary arteries. Both of these abnormalities can often be detected via appropriate screenings, such as those being offered by the new Beaumont Cardiovascular Performance Clinic.

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The Healthy Guide to Valentine’s Day

Healthy Guide to Valentine's DayThis Valentine’s Day, skip the standard dinner for two in favor of a more unique celebration of your love – and burn a few calories in the process! Follow our guide to a healthy, active day sure to sweep your sweetheart off their feet.

Breakfast in bed

Start the day right with a deliciously filling breakfast to energize you both for the day ahead. And what better way to eat breakfast than in bed? Surprise your sweetie with a beautiful spread of fresh fruit, warm cinnamon-maple oatmeal and an egg white omelet stuffed with spinach, tomato, and caramelized onion. Top with avocado for a creamy, dairy-free alternative to calorie-laden cheese.

Take a hike

Resist the urge to crawl back into bed after that delicious breakfast (or don’t—kissing burns 2-5 calories a minute!). Take your loved one on a cozy morning hike through the woods. Bundle up, bring a camera and be sure to pack a water bottle and a healthy snack – almonds, dried fruit, or a homemade granola bar – just in case. Hold hands while you hike and enjoy the solace with your sweetheart!

Have a picnic

It might be cold outside, but that’s no reason you can’t enjoy a picnic lunch! Bring a bit of summer inside with a picnic blanket on the living room floor. Enjoy conversation and quality time with your loved one over peanut butter sandwiches on whole wheat bread and carrot sticks, just like the picnics you enjoyed as a child – plus a glass of red wine for a heart-healthy, romantic twist.

Break a sweat

After lunch, commit to a healthy adventure with your valentine. Go for a spin at your local ice rink – or hit a few balls at the indoor batting cages. Mini-golf, go-karting and even laser tag are all great activities to keep the two of you moving – and laughing – all day. For the active couple, try a unique exercise class together, like kickboxing, rock climbing or aerial yoga. Celebrate your relationship by creating new experiences you’ll treasure for years to come.

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8 Steps to a Better Breakfast

8 Steps to a Better BreakfastWe all know breakfast is the most important meal of the day – but we don’t always have time to devote to elaborate morning meals. Whatever you do, don’t skip it; not eating breakfast can lead to overeating later in the day. A good breakfast provides energy and sets the stage for healthy decisions all day long. Try out these 8 tips for a better breakfast:

1. Fresh fruit

Fresh fruit is as simple to prepare as it is good for you. Mix up your everyday apple or orange routine with lightly caramelized grapefruit  or fresh blackberries over plain non-fat greek yogurt (for protein and calcium), drizzled with honey and raw almonds.

2. Go for grains

Eating a hearty, filling breakfast will make you less inclined to overindulge later in the day. Try oats, farro, quinoa, or even polenta for a protein-packed meal – the perfect foundation for a yummy breakfast. Overnight oatmeal can be assembled well in advance and left to firm up in the fridge, leaving you with a quick, ready-to-eat meal come morning.

3. Homemade is always better

Pre-packaged granola bars are certainly convenient for grab-and-go meals, but most store-bought bars are full of unnecessary sugars. Cut back on calories with delicious, no-bake bar recipes that can be easily assembled on the weekend to get you out the door on time all week. 

4. How about a milkshake?

Yes, you heard that correctly – a chocolate milkshake can be a perfectly healthy breakfast option, when made with frozen bananas! Blend up bananas with cocoa powder and a splash of milk for a deliciously creamy breakfast you’d swear is dessert. Add peanut butter or unsweetened coconut for an extra special treat.

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Setting SMART Fitness Goals in 2014

Everyone has a different reason for wanting to get in shape.  It’s important to ask a simple question before getting started with an exercise program:  What are my fitness goals for 2014?

Your goals may be health related or perhaps performance oriented. Your exercise program should be designed with your goals in mind. Many of the health related benefits of exercise can be attained with 30 minutes of moderate intensity exercise five days a week.

Setting Fitness GoalsPerformance oriented programming will likely require a greater time commitment and /or exercising at a higher intensity.

What’s your current activity level?

Increasing your weekly exercise time 10%/week assures progress toward your goal while minimizing your risk of over-doing it.

Do you have any health issues?

Vigorous exercise may not be appropriate for you if you have heart disease, high blood pressure, unusual shortness of breath, or diabetes. Consult with your physician prior to beginning a program vigorous exercise.

What do you enjoy doing?

You’ll be more likely to maintain exercise habits if the activities you choose are comfortable and enjoyable. Modify your exercise program as needed to enhance your compliance.

Enter the Beaumont New Year, New You sweepstakes for a chance to attend a Beaumont healthy cooking class or a Beaumont cook book. Let us help you with your New Year’s resolution!

Set SMART fitness goals
Once you have an idea of what you want to achieve and where you currently stand, it’s time to set SMART fitness goals in 2014—one of the most successful methods for meeting your fitness goals:

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Olympic Sports That Burn the Most Calories

Every four years, the world watches the best winter athletes as they compete for gold on the ice, snow and slopes. Want to feel like an Olympian during the Sochi Games? Try some of these Olympic sports that burn the most calories.

Skiing
Olympic Sports That Burn The Most CaloriesThe Olympic schedule is full of downhill events like the slalom and Super-G, while on the cross-country side, athletes ski up to 50km in grueling tests of stamina and strength. You’d think cross-country skiing would be a better workout, but the strength and balance needed to stay on your feet during downhill skiing burns a lot of calories. One hour of downhill or cross-country skiing can burn anywhere from 500 to 1,000 calories depending on your weight and intensity.

Skating
The Olympics are full of speed skating events – sprints, like the 500m and long distance races that go for 5,000m. Skating is a great way to build strong legs and core muscles and an hour of moderately intense skating usually burns between 500-600 calories.

Ice Hockey
Ice hockey combines sprint skating with slightly longer distances, but also includes stick work and quick agility that both require a ton of core strength and stamina. Some of the best hockey players in the world are on the ice for more than 24 minutes each game. Playing a moderately intense game of hockey burns around 700 calories.

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Beaumont Food of the Month: Grapefruit

Food of the Month - GrapefruitGrapefruit is more than a beloved breakfast staple; it’s a genuine superfood! These tangy citrus fruits are in season from winter through early spring, and offer plenty of tart juice with just a hint of sweetness.  There are lots of varieties of grapefruit; seeded, seedless, red, pink – even white!

Eating just one half of a standard grapefruit (approximately 120 grams) will provide an impressive 64% of your daily value of calcium. Red and pink grapefruit also offer the antioxidant lycopene, a carotenoid phytonutrient with cancer-fighting properties. Grapefruit has also been proven to reduce blood levels of LDL (“bad”) cholesterol. Juice it, pickle it, bake with it – or enjoy this low-calorie treat all on its own!

Nutritional information

  • Grapefruit (1/2 fruit)
  • Calories: 52
  • Fat: 0.2 (0%)
  • Cholesterol: 0
  • Potassium: 166 g (4%)
  • Total Carbohydrates: 13 g (4%)
  • Protein: 1 g (2%)
  • Vitamin A: 28%
  • Vitamin C: 64%
  • Calcium: 2%
  • Magnesium: 2%
  • Iron: 0%

How to cook with grapefruit

Though often enjoyed alone, grapefruit is a versatile fruit that complements many types of dishes. Consider using grapefruit juice or peel in the place of other citrus fruits – like oranges or lemons – in your cooking or baking.

Try a few of these recipes:

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10 Exercises You Can Do At Home

When the weather gets cold, it’s harder and harder to fit regular exercise into your day. Here are ten exercises you can do anytime, anywhere – with no equipment!

Downward Dog

10 Exercises You Can Do At HomeYoga uses your own body weight to help tone muscles while increasing flexibility – and it’s one of the easiest forms of exercise to practice at home. Get started with the Downward Dog yoga pose by placing your hands and knees on the floor. Keep your knees under your hips and your hands slightly in front of your body. Gradually lift knees off the floor, slowly straightening legs and pushing your buttocks toward the ceiling, to create a triangle with the floor. Hold the pose while gently pressing your heels toward the floor.

Push-ups

Push-ups work the pectoral muscles – as well as your triceps and deltoids – and are essential to a good upper body workout. Place your toes on the ground and your hands on the floor, extending your arms beneath your shoulders; then, bend your elbows to lower your torso to the ground. Straighten your arms to lift your body to its starting position. If a traditional push-up is too challenging, start with knees on the floor. To add difficulty, try lifting one foot off the floor and extending one arm in front of you through the move.

Crunches

Give your abdominal muscles a workout with a traditional crunch. Lay flat on your back with knees bent and feet shoulder-width apart. With your hands behind your head, use your core muscles to lift your shoulders off the ground while keeping your back straight and neck relaxed.

Side leg lift

A side leg lift works your abs, hips and butt. Lay on your side with your legs stacked on top of each other and your head resting on your arm. Lift the top leg for one count and return to the starting position to complete one rep. Switch sides and repeat.

Lunges

To work your thighs, buttocks and hamstrings, try incorporating lunges into your routine. Start out standing upright with feet together then extend your left foot behind you while bending your right knee to bring you forward to the ground. Switch sides and repeat.

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5 Best Times to Exercise

5 Best Times to ExerciseSetting a regular routine is the easiest way to stay on track with an exercise plan. It creates structure and balance and rather than trying to fit exercise into your day, you organize your day around exercise – but not all routines are the same and everyone’s body clock works differently. To help you set a regular routine, here are the 5 best times to exercise:

#1: First Thing in the Morning
If you have trouble fitting exercise into your days, mornings might be the best time to exercise. Getting your exercise in first thing in the morning gets it out of the way and doesn’t allow for pressures later in the day to sidetrack your workouts. Morning workouts were also shown to promote better sleep than working out at other times of the day.

#2: Lunchtime
Rather than heading out for a fast food lunch, hit the gym and get your workout in then eat a sensible lunch at your desk. Not everyone is fortunate enough to have the flexibility to exercise in the middle of the day, but it’s a good way to get your workout in when your body is warm and before the rest of your day can interrupt your routine. Studies have also shown that lunchtime workouts boosts work performance.

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