Sweet cherries are here, and because most are grown along the lengthy West Coast the season lasts from mid-May in California to the end of the harvest in Washington in August. Intensely flavorful and juicy, cherries are not a hard sell. But their long list of powerful nutrients seals the deal: they’re rich in anthocyanins (potent antioxidants with anti-inflammatory properties) and boast plenty of blood-pressure-reducing potassium. They often grow in pairs, because multiple flowers bloom from a single bud and when they fruit, the cherries stay together. And these heart-shaped treats really are magical culinary partners when you match them with other foods. Try them in a refreshing cherry lemonade or combined with nutty farro in a hearty summer salad. Or wrap sweetened cherries and creamy ricotta in store-bought crêpes for an easy-to-make blintz. Whether...read full post »
Our country’s most efficient pollinator, the domesticated honeybee, is in decline. We talked with Dennis vanEngelsdorp, Ph.D.—an entomologist at the University of Maryland and one of the first to see honeybees were in trouble 10 years ago—about why we should be concerned.
Why are honeybees in decline?
We continue to see high levels of mortality; whole hives are disappearing. Each year, we continue to lose an average of 30% of our colonies. We think it’s caused by the equivalent of bee flu. When bees are sick they leave the hive to prevent other bees from getting sick. The big question is, why are bees succumbing to flu and to a combination of other viruses and pathogens? The three biggest factors are increasing pesticides, varroa mites and poor nutrition; all weaken the bees’ immune systems. As land is developed, bees are...
Drinking green tea may reduce your risk of cancer, Alzheimer’s and stroke, but tea’s benefits don’t stop there: new research shows it can also keep you looking younger. A recent study found that green tea extract applied to the eye area daily for 8 weeks diminished crow’s-feet wrinkles. That’s due to the high levels of antioxidants in green tea, which studies show also help reduce redness and puffiness (key if you’re not getting enough sleep) when applied topically.
While the most potent green tea extracts are found in beauty products, you can still wring some benefits by steeping two green tea bags in hot water for 2 to 3 minutes. Then squeeze and chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes. Place one cooled tea bag over each eye for 15 minutes, recommends Jolene Hart, a beauty nutrition expert and author of Eat Pretty: Nutrition for Beauty, Inside...read full post »
This vegetarian mainstay of the grilling season is certainly convenient. But are frozen veggie burgers as healthy as they seem? Most are low in calories and have at least 3 grams of fiber. Yet they’re not all so innocent. We recommend looking for veggie burgers with 400 mg of sodium or less and at least 5 grams of protein per patty.
Brands We Like: We sampled a variety of burgers and flavors to find ones that topped out on taste and health. Three of our favorites were: Sol Spicy Black Bean (vegan, gluten-free), Amy’s Bistro Veggie Burger (gluten-free) and Morningstar Farms...read full post »
Put the emphasis on vegetables at mealtime. Pick one day (or just a meal) a week to eat meatless and have veggies be the shinning star on your plate. If you’re worried that you’ll miss the meat, include chewy, satisfying foods like seared firm tofu, grilled mushrooms and nuts, which feel more filling because they take more time and effort to eat than, say, a spoonful of broth. They also better mimic the way you chew meat—which makes them a more satisfying substitute.
Recipe of the Day: Moo Shu Vegetables
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