Organic Valley

What’s the Beef?

A healthy FYI for all of you meat eaters: When buying beef, it’s best to buy grass-fed since it contains more beneficial omega-3s and CLA (conjugated linoleic acid), but less saturated fat and calories than grain-fed beef. If you opt for organic then the beef should also be free of antibiotics, hormones, nitrates, and other harmful additives.  Wondering what CLA is good for? CLA is believed to improve heart health, reduce cancer risk and increase lean muscle mass.

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Omega-3 fatty acids, like those found in grass-fed meat and dairy, are changing the way we think about fat. More and more science is showing the benefits of certain fats and the low-fat craze isn’t as crazy as it once was, but you can definitely still see remnants of this craze left and right when you look at common misconceptions still affecting store shelves and consumer choices today.  There was a point in time when it was being portrayed as if every fat was bad for us – no egg yolks, no butter, etc . Interestingly enough, we have we seen a dramatic increase in obesity with the increase of low-fat and non-fat products.

So I have to break the news – the healthy, slender people of the world are not living on sugar-free, diet, non-fat, low-fat, reduced-fat, low-sodium processed foods. You’ll find that the healthiest and happiest among us tend to have a diet of mainly whole foods. Those flavorful, nutrient-dense, wonderful foods in their original form. Yes, whole foods not only taste better, but are far more satisfying than their processed versions. In addition, you are much less likely to overeat when you’re eating whole foods.

Think about it: You have that 50 calorie yogurt that has no fat yet it has artificial flavors, colors and 30 grams of sugar.  Does that sound healthy? Does that sound like something your body will easily know how to process? NO and NO!

We need fat because fats provide us with a concentrated source of energy. Not to mention, they are the main material for cell membranes and various hormones. Without fat in your diet it is extremely hard to feel satiated and if you don’t feel satiated then you are going to keep eating… Is anyone getting skinnier with that equation? Nope.  The low-fat craze demonized all fats and neglected to inform consumers of the fact that fat has healthy forms and fat has a good and essential place in our diets!

So if you want to consume a healthy, balanced diet, you have to include the right fats. These good fats are found in a wide range of foods like fish, meat, milk, cheese, nuts, and olives. Even butter – yes, the real deal golden bar (again, organic grass-fed is best and the yellower it is the more nutritious it is) – is actually beneficial in small amounts and when eaten with something like steamed broccoli, it helps your body absorb the broccoli’s nutrients. Also, butter is much better for you than margarine – that scary  man-made, chemically altered fat.

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So remember that not all fats are the enemy and there are many sources of healthy fat, which should be included on a daily basis in a well-balanced diet!

For Baked Potatoes, Bagels & Your Face!

Here are 2 more easy, natural masks to add to your beauty routine! Both masks are excellent for reducing redness as well as moisturizing and refining skin.

If you have sensitive skin, try this single ingredient mask twice a week:

  • Apply a tablespoon of full-fat sour cream to skin for 20 minutes.

Why it works? The lactic acid gently smooths skin and improves textures. This is a great alternative for people who react badly to store-bought masks.

Another similar option:

  • Apply a tablespoon of full-fat cream cheese to skin for 20 minutes.

My mom actually told me to do this one jokingly when I was complaining about dry skin.  I laughed at first, but gave it a try (remembering that my mom’s beauty suggestions for me always seem to work best). She was right, again! Definitely opt for the full fat version for best results and organic, if possible.

There’s no going back

Once I drank organic milk (many years ago), I really never considered going back to drinking non-organic milk. The difference between a glass of regular whole milk and organic whole milk is just so undeniably different.  A glass of whole organic milk is so delicious and creamy, it really tastes like a treat. Even the non-fat, 1%, or 2% organic milks are so much better tasting and creamier than regular versions. Personally, I always felt like I was drinking a mix of water and milk when I drank a lot of common brands of non-fat milk. But that’s just me. One of my favorite organic milks is produced by Organic Valley.

This is a great company that also makes organic soy milk, organic lactose free milk, organic butter, and organic cheese!

Click here for coupons on all of the previously mentioned products: Organic Valley.

Also, refer to my previous posting on the likely health benefits of organic whole milk: Another Reason Why I Love Organic Milk