Archive for the ‘Health’ Category

Chef Amy Thielen Shares Tips to Get Summer Fresh Tomatoes in the Middle of Winter

January 22, 2016

Finding fresh fruits and vegetables in January is definitely a challenge but perhaps you are not looking in the right place. Professional chef, Amy Thielen, is host of the Food Network’s Heartland Table, amy thelen and has great tips to find great tasting family farm grown tomatoes in the middle of winter.


Question: Amy, how can you find fresh farm tomoatoes in the middle of winter?

Amy Thielen: Well, they’re not in your produce sections so don’t look there. I’m going to send you right down the middle aisles. Outside of summer, I don’t buy and cook with fresh tomatoes. I use canned tomatoes and I’ve tried them all, but Red Gold Tomatoes really are my favorite. They are picked at peak ripeness. They are grown under the sun. not in a greenhouse. They are canned immediately and I know they are going to have great flavor, be super tender and really bright red. When it comes to canned tomatoes, you want the deepest red you can find. In fact, the redder the tomato, the more of that antioxidant lycopene it has inside. Red Gold Tomatoes these are grown on family farms in Ohio, Michigan and Indiana in the hot Midwestern sun. They are non-GMO verified and the can is BPA free.


Question: Are all canned the tomatoes the same? How can you tell they were picked at their peak of freshness?

Amy Thielen: Some people say canned tomatoes are the same but they’re not. They vary in quality and all you need is a simple crush test to determine if they are picked at the peak of freshness. What I do is take my whole can (and I like to buy whole peeled tomatoes) and then I pour them into a bowl or, in this case, a colander, and I give them what I call a quick crush test. I squeeze one. and I can tell immediately if it squeezes to a pulp that the tomato was picked at teh peak ripeness and it’s going to be really, really sweet.


Question: Let’s talk about how to pack more nutrition in family meals this winter with these great tomatoes

Amy Thielen: I have a couple recipes that are good for high-quality canned tomatoes. one is a Tomato Mozzarella Pie with rich custard and a lightly seasoned tomato top. Then I have a variation with a Thin Crust Pub Style midwestern kind of Pizza with a cracker crust and fresh tomato marinara. I like toss my own cracker crust dough which doesn’t even have yeast. It’s very simple to make or you can use any pizza dough that you like or have on hand. First, brush the crust with olive oil, then lay down a thin blanket of fresh mozzarella, and then I tear the tomatoes and lay them right on top. Finally, I shower the pizza with parmesan cheese, salt and pepper, and pop it into a 500 degree oven for 10 minutes. It’s going to come out blistering and so fresh — who doesn’t like fresh tomato in the dead of winter? You can find some of my recipes for crusts in my cookbook, The New Midwestern Table, and you can find all these recipes on


Get a Fresh Start to Your New Year with Positive Changes for a New You

December 30, 2015

Emily-Kaurfman-New-Year-New-You-2016Each New Year, one in three Americans vows to make positive changes that better their lives with a fresh start but many people get side tracked before January is over. Emily Kaufman has three easy solutions for a healthier new year and ways to hit your targeted goals so your resolutions don’t get derailed.

Boost Your Weight Loss Efforts with Celsius. Each new year is an opportunity for a fresh start to make positive changes in your life and the number one resolution that tops the list for most people is to lose weight and get healthy. One way to boost your weight loss effort is to make Celsius, a healthy energy drink, your go-to fitness partner. Multiple university studies have shown that drinking one Celsius will burn an additional 100 calories or more.


It also has been proven to help burn up to 93% more body fat during moderate activity. There are five flavors and it contains no sugar, no high fructose corn syrup, no gluten, no artificial flavors or colors and you can get it at stores nationwide. Use the store locator at to find a retailer near you.

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Don’t Let Your New Year Resolutions Get Derailed with a Cold. Whether your new year goals are to eat healthy, exercise more, or even work on your bucket list and travel goals, nothing will sideline your momentum more than a cold. And colds are no match for Cold-EEZE cold remedy products. Their classic cherry lozenges are clinically proven to shorten your cold by almost half the time based on double blind, placebo-controlled studies conducted at Dartmouth College and the Cleveland Clinic. The Cold-EEZE quick melts also provide relief to multiple cold symptoms.  Not only is it the #1 pharmacist recommended brand, but it’s Emily’s go to brand, too. For more information, check out Coldeeze,com.


Set Specific Goals. You can’t hit a target if you don’t know where to aim, so regardless what your New Year Goals are, you need to be specific. For example, don’t just set a goal to “lose weight,” but define how much you need to lose and give yourself a timeline to achieve it like “I’m going to lose 10 pounds by March 1st.” Also, make a plan about how you’re going to achieve that goal that specifies exactly how you’re going to go about it.  

Is Your Salad a High Calorie Land Mine? Monique Coleman has a Perfect Healthy Salad Equation

September 18, 2015

March 20, 2015 – Healthy eating has been High School Musical Star Monique Coleman’s passion and, as an actress in Hollywood, she always has to look her best and knows just how easy it is to get derailed on nutrition. Monique is on a mission to share her nutritious eating tips since her own family has struggled with making healthy choices and weight issues.

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We all know that too much processed and fast food can put you in the fast lane for fitness failure, but did you know that the biggest sabotage to healthy eating may actually come from an unlikely source? Your salad.

Question:  How can salads that start out healthy turn into a high calorie land mine?

Monique Coleman:  A salad may seem like a nutritious choice until you begin to pile on high-calorie ingredients. What starts out as 400 calorie light meal can turn into a 1200 calorie land mine when you add alarming amounts of cheese, high fat commercial salad dressings, croutons, dried fruit, and “a pound” of nuts.  You know, eating healthy is one of my passions and, as an actress in Hollywood, I know just how easy it is to get derailed on nutrition.  I’ve put together some tips and recipes plus have a perfect salad equation to diffuse the high calorie salad bomb.

Question:  Let’s start with the perfect salad equation. How do you  make a truly healthy salad?

Monique Coleman:  That’s exactly what it is….an equation. Your salad should be three-quarters fresh fruits and vegetables like a mix of greens including kale and other leafy greens like turnips, mustards and collards which are so good for you and even cut up veggies like squash, zucchini, celery, onion, sliced peppers and tomatoes and a one-quarter combo of lean protein, like chicken, or black beans or tofu plus a complex carbohydrate such as wheat berries or quinoa.

You can add one-to-two tablespoons of calorie-dense items like avocado wedges that are healthy fats. If you need extra flavor, just toss in some fresh herbs into the mix like basil, cilantro or mint; or whisk raw or roasted garlic into oil and vinegar. A healthy salad doesn’t have to be boring because it should be a feast for your senses.

Question:  Why is a variety of vegetables better for you?

Monique Coleman:  I recently read a study by University College in London that found that 48% of people who eat seven or more servings of vegetables and fruit a day live longer than those who don’t. So aim for at least two cups of veggies with lots of different colors like the ones you see here from Nature’s Greens and Versatile Veggies which are always in season. Last summer, I got to visit their farm and fields where they grow their produce and know first hand that eating vegetables that are in season will give you maximum nutrition benefit .

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Question:  What are some easy ways to get a variety of veggies in your diet?

Monique Coleman:  We all have busy lifestyles and it’s not always easy to eat healthy so make it easy on yourself and look for pre-cut and pre-washed bags of greens – my favorites Kale and Collards — and already chopped vegetables. Nature’s Greens and Versatile Veggies make it very convenient to eat healthy.

Also, a very popular trend is fruit smoothies but it’s a misconception that they are all healthy for you because many are packed with crazy amounts of sugar so your best option is to make your own and many people don’t think to do a vegetable smoothie, but they’re a great way to add veggies to your daily routine. You know I have put together some really easy recipes that are packed with nutrition and flavor, including my favorite Kale smoothie at

Monique Coleman is most recognized as Taylor McKessie from the tremendously successful High School Musical franchise, as well as one of the stars of Dancing with the Stars (Season 3). She has also guest starred on such shows as Boston Public, Malcolm in the Middle, Veronica Mars, Bones, and was a series regular on Disney’s The Suite Life of Zack and Cody. Coleman has also co-hosted The View, and appeared on Rachel Ray, Good Morning America, The Today Show, and Elle. Monique grew up in South Carolina and has been inspired to pursue healthy eating because of her own family’s struggle with making healthy choices and weight issues. She loves learning about how fresh vegetables are grown and get to markets so she can make the healthiest choices as well as sharing her nutritious recipes with fans on her blog. She is currently partnering with leafy greens grower WP Rawl to promote their brand Nature’s Greens® and healthy living. Monique is passionate about living a well-balanced life and wants to show her fans eating greens in healthy ways can also taste great!

Household Problem Solvers and Easy Ways to Save Time & Money

March 6, 2015

Many family budgets are squeezed to the max. Grocery bills are increasing, gas prices are on their way back up, and keeping the family connected is costing a small fortune. Lifestyle expert, Emily Kaufman, has some problem solvers for the household budget and shares some solutions including easy ways to save – from how to get the most value for your mobile phone to apps to help you save time and money to easy ways to eat healthy when you’re pressed for time with today’s busy lifestyles.


Use Your Tax Refund to Save on Your Monthly Wireless Bill. According to a national survey conducted by Straight Talk Wireless, nearly 70 percent of taxpayers anticipate they’ll get a tax refund of $500 or more and 80 percent consider tax season as a time to think about ways to save money. In fact, monthly wireless spending is an area where Americans want to save more money with 25 percent stating this is a big expenditure they would like to reduce. One way to maximize your tax refund and cut back on expenses is by switching your wireless phone plan. Straight Talk Wireless has the latest wireless devices and a no-contract plan with Unlimited Talk, Text and the first 3GB of data at high speed for just $45 per month. You can get their phones and service plans exclusively at Walmart. Find out more at

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Smartphones are Your Ticket to Savings. Smartphones are a great tool that can save you time and money and here are a three FREE apps for you can get for your iPhone or Android that do just that. Grocery iQ is a must-have app for busy families or for anyone trying to keep their grocery budget under control. You can you build grocery lists by searching through tons of products and use voice recognition or barcode scanning. Also, RetailMeNot puts thousands of coupons in your pocket for hundreds of stores and you don’t have to print them, just show your phone at the register. Finally, gas prices can be a major headache and the GasBuddy app finds the cheapest gas prices closest to you and the app remains extraordinarily up-to-date on your best gas deals.


New Smart Way to Eat Healthy On The Go. If you want an easy and healthy​ snack for busy lives on the go, Crispy Fruit is a convenient grab ‘n go option that’s 100% natural and kids and adults love them. It is a single-ingredient crunchy fruit snack option with less than 55 calories per serving and comes in seven flavors including Apple, Banana, Mango, Pineapple, Asian Pear, Cantaloupe, and Tangerine. Crispy Fruit is Non-GMO Project Verified, has a light, crispy texture and, since it’s freeze-dried, there are no preservatives. Since you know I travel a lot, I love that it is also TSA friendly and you can toss in your carry-on, purse, backpack, or gym bag. they’re just $1.50 a bag and you can get then at local stores or online at


Positive Changes & Fresh Start Solutions for a New Year and a New You

December 31, 2014

Emily Kaufman MC010515 New Year New You 550x311Each new year brings new opportunities for positive change and lifestyle expert, Emily Kaufman, has some ideas to get a fresh start with a brand new year from finance to health and other lifestyle changes for you and your family.

FireShot Screen Capture #891 - 'Learn How to Build Credit from Better Money Habits' - www_bettermonGet a Fresh Start on Personal Finances in 2015. According to the recent Bank of America & USA Today Better Money Habits Millennial Report, even though 80% of millennials 18 to 34 think they’ll be better off or the same as their parents, the majority say they are actually living paycheck-to-paycheck and many are falling short when it comes to saving. To get your financial life on the right path this year, Bank of America and Khan Academy have partnered to design a free website that takes the complexity out of personal finance at The site has short videos that make personal finance topics easy to understand plus some hands-on tools for your personal financial goals. Content is organized around goals, such as reducing credit card debt or getting ready for tax season, so it’s relevant to what you want to achieve. You can get started on your desktop, tablet or mobile


Good Health is About Much More Than the Scale. Losing weight is always one of the top resolutions on everyone’s list whether it’s five pounds or fifty, but good health is more than just diet and Sam’s Club wants you to take control of your health this year. That’s why they’re offering a free health screening open to the public on Saturday, January 10th from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. to help people keep their New Year health goals. The free screening is valued at $250 and tests health indicators like your blood pressure, body mass index and cholesterol levels. This is one of 10 free screenings that Sam’s Club offers nationwide throughout the year from now through October that cover a wide range of tests to help assess and manage your health. You can find out more at

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Get Kids on Track to Healthy Eating with Fruits and Veggies Disguised as Snacks.   New Year’s resolutions for better health are not just for adults. Most parents want to make sure that they’re kids are eating more fruits and vegetables in the New Year and what better way to that than to give them fruits and veggies disguised as snacks. Bolthouse Farms Kids™ Fruit Tubes are real fruit puree blends in squeezable, slim tubes with no added sugar or preservatives. You can eat them chilled or frozen and they come in two flavors: Mango Meets Banana & Pineapple and Strawberry Meets Banana. You’ll find them in produce sections at grocery stores nationwide including WalMart and Giant Eagle for just $3.99 for 10 fruit tubes. Bolthouse Farms Kids™ also has fruit smoothies and veggie snackers that have NO added preservatives, high-fructose corn syrup, or artificial flavors. You can find out more at

Finally, don’t forget that the most important secret for succeeding at your new year goals is to get started and stick with it. It’s the sum of the little things you do everyday toward your goals that help you achieve your plans.

Staying Healthy at Work & Home During Cold & Flu Season

November 13, 2014

FireShot Screen Capture #867 - 'WCIU, The U I Staying Healthy During Cold & Flu Season' - www_wciu_com_videos_youAn estimated 22–189 million school days are missed annually due to a cold. As a result, parents missed 126 million workdays to stay home to care for their children. When added to the 150 million workdays missed by employees suffering from a cold, the total economic impact of cold-related work loss exceeds $20 billion per year . Career expert and former Human Resources Executive, Vicki Salemi, understands the impact and has new ways to stay healthy during cold and flu season to stay on the job during cold and flu season .

How to Clean Air to Prevent Spread of Germs. The Venta Airwasher is a 2-in-1 system that purifies the air and then humidifies a room to the optimal level. It stops the transmission of the smallest particles of germs, bacteria, and allergens by drawing in dry, dirty air and “washing” the air. It uses water as the filter so that only purified, humidified air is sent back into the room. It is easy to operate and perfect for the office or at home to help stop germs from being transmitted during cold and flu season. You can order various models online for a variety of room sizes through or at (where to find retailers across the country.)

Venta Airwasher

Understand the Difference Between Cold & Flu. Since you treat a cold differently than you do a flu, you need to know the difference between the two. A cold will come on gradually, but the flu will hit you very suddenly. Flu-like symptoms include fever, chills, body aches, headache and fatigue, but you can nip the flu in the bud by taking Oscillo at the first sign of illness. According to clinical studies, it shortens the duration and reduces the severity of flu-like symptoms and it does not cause drowsiness or interact with other medications. It’s recommended for everyone ages two to 102 and you can get it at major drugstores like CVS, Walgreen’s, Rite Aid or Target. You want to keep it in your purse, briefcase, or desk drawer so that you always have it on hand at the onset of symptoms. Find out more information about flu in the workplace at


A Home Remedy for Viruses. There is a home remedy that can really make a difference when dealing with viruses that not everyone knows about and may make a difference between “calling in sickor staying healthy. Oregano Oil is a very potent natural antibiotic and antiviral. When 5-6 drops are put in a glass of water and gargled, it can stop a sore throat in its tracks. If you use 5-6 drops in a glass of water and then swallow, it can help kill cold or infection in under 24 hours. You must take it at the first onset of symptoms and pregnant women should not take oregano oil. It is very strong and children may not like it.


Basic Tips for Everyone to Stay Healthy. Everyone should know these basic tips to stay healthy during cold and flu season but they are always worth mentioning: First, washing your hands is the number one defense against cold & flu season since that’s how most viruses are transmitted – you touch an infected surface and then touch your face.  Second, disinfect your home, office and car and wipe down surfaces like your phones, cell phones, computer keyboard and steering wheel. And finally, boost your immune system with plenty of sleep, exercise and eating a healthy diet.

New Year: Positive Solutions for Busy Lives

January 7, 2014
Jodie Watson, Real Simple, Real Life

Jodie Watson

It’s a new year and it’s time to focus on making some positive changes to our busy lives.  Instead of letting life control you, it’s time to take control of your life and achieve the goals to improve your health, career, finances, self-esteem and more.  This is the time of year that everyone looks for solutions to everyday issues and problems that can make you healthier physically, financially, and more in the coming year but have fun too. Author Jodie Watson has some helpful tips today in all these areas so let’s start with fun

Make travel easy with new App from Expedia. If you’re looking to save time and money when making travel or vacation plans, think about travel the same way you bundle your phone, internet and cable together to save money.

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At Expedia, you can book your flight and hotel at the same time and save up to $525. Another tip for taking the stress out of our busy lives is to take advantage of the chance take a short trip when travel deals come up.  Expedia’s mobile app makes being spontaneous easy by helping you find a hotel for that weekend getaway quickly and saving you up to 40 percent on your room. Go to for all the details.

Don’t let a busy schedule derail your weight loss goals.  With the new year, almost everyone has a resolution to shed a few pounds and Atkins is an option for quick and easy weight loss.

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Atkins is the leading low-carb eating plan that provides quick, satisfying weight loss with an easy to sustain approach to stick to those goals in the New Year. The New Atkins Made Easy book simplifies the traditional diet with tools like its Carb Ladder that helps navigate through the plan ensuring weight-loss without feeling hungry. If you’re on-the-go, the book has shopping lists, easy recipes, and meal plans plus tips for dining out.  They also have new low-carb, sugar-free, bite-sized Chocolate and Chocolate Peanut candies so you can satisfy cravings without the guilt. For a FREE Quick Start Kit and download the app for smartphones and iPads Go to

New tools to mange your personal finances. You can get simple tips for better money management with easy to understand videos at, a site that Bank of America and Khan Academy have set up to help you better understand your credit, saving, budgeting, and more.

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You’ll learn that it’s all about taking small steps, like paying those bills on time!  This habit will strengthen your credit score, which is your financial identity. A better credit score makes things like getting a car loan easier and less expensive.   Also, set a budget. This sounds simple, but so few people actually put a budget together and live by it.

Jodie Watson is single working mom and an organizational expert who knows all about helping clients with a fresh start by advising them on how to let go of the old systems that aren’t working and usher in new solutions. She is the Founder and President of Supreme Organization and was a regular on Real Simple, Real Life, a lifestyle make-over show on the TLC Network where she helped women identify their day-to-day organizational challenges. Jodie offers realistic solutions that save money, save time, clear the chaos, and make lives less stressful and more manageable.  After working in the entertainment industry for many years including Joan & Melissa River’s Rugby Productions, she launched Supreme Organization in 2005.  She’s a member of the National Association of Organizers (NAPO), Vice President of the Los Angeles Chapter of NAPO, & has a roster of celebrity clients.