Tag Archives: green living

Conservatives Found Another Thing to Hate – Bike Shares

New York has everything, right? That’s pretty much true, including progressive thinkers who want to see a healthier population and a cleaner planet. One of the many ways New Yorkers are trying to accomplish these goals is through bike sharing, specifically through a company called Citi Bikes. The business is simple and really a no-brainer in a busy city that requires commuting. A new report suggests that conservatives are making it really tough to do the healthy thing in NYC, though.

cycling benefits

 Citi Bikes is super simple, with a minimal three step process:

1. Unlock a bike from any station by paying for the rental.

2. Ride the bike wherever you want.

3. Return the bike to any station when you’re done.

Riders don’t have to invest in a bike, they don’t have to search for a place to lock up a bike, and they don’t have to store a bike in a notoriously small New York apartment. They also get exercise and do not leave a carbon footprint behind. When I see these units set up in other cities, my first response is, “wish we had these.”

While this simple plan could literally reverse so many of our country’s health problems, some groups have found a way to deter such a great program. Mayor Bloomberg has already caught flak for trying to reduce soda sizes in his city, and apparently the complaints don’t stop when Americans feel they might be pressured into riding a bike instead of sitting in an expensive, fume-emitting cab. (more…)

How to Cook with Spinach

Spinach is seen both as a life force and a cause for sheer rebellion, depending on whom you ask. The enthusiast might be the token health nut in your friend circle and the pessimist is likely your 7-year-old daughter and most grown men. However, whichever side of the spinach argument you fall on, there’s no denying it’s insanely healthy for you.

Health benefits: Spinach is one of the best foods you can add to your diet as it’s loaded with essential vitamins and nutrients like iron, vitamin C, niacin, calcium and vitamin B. It’s also an excellent source of free-radical fighting antioxidants, and contains folate, fiber, lutein and potassium, which are all essential for maintaining a healthy heart.

Helpful tip: Did you know that microgreens can pack up to 40 times more nutrients than their mature counterparts? For this reason, stick to baby spinach when possible. And if you really want to be an over-achiever, organic is best since the whole green in consumed. (more…)

Your Perfume May be Increasing Your Risk for Diabetes

Many people in the United States are being exposed to a chemical called phthalates, which is found in every day things like perfumes, scented lotions, industrial paints, solvents, packaging, scented candles and almost anything else containing fragrance.

In Environmental Health Perspective’s recent study on diabetes and phthalates, they attempted to see if there was something connecting the two. The study was only done on women since the phthalates levels seem to be higher in them than men. The National Health and Nutrition Examination surveyed about 2,350 women. Each woman gave urine samples for chemical testing (questions on diabetes status and phthalates levels were not gathered at the same time which makes the study cross-sectional).

What the examination revealed was that per 1,000 women, there were 40 extra diabetes cases in the women who contained higher phthalates levels compared to those with lower levels. That means the risk of diabetes is twice as high in women who contain higher phthalates levels. Something to consider is that people who have diabetes might have higher phthalates levels because of the particular medications and medical devices that are used to actually treat the disease. Phthalates chemicals are found in many of these products as well. This study did not rule out this detail. (more…)

Beware Carrageenan, a Food Additive Common in Organic Products

By Abra Pappa for Nutritious America

If you are into reading labels then you have most likely seen an ingredient called carrageenan. It specifically appears on the label of many organic processed food products.

What is Carrageenan?

Carrageenan is a polysaccharide derived from red seaweed and it has molecular qualities similar to plastic. Seaweed sounds innocent enough; it’s natural right? Absolutely, as a matter of fact, many types of seaweed are commonly used as a medicinal food to support many conditions like thyroid disorder and even cancer. However, not all seaweed is created equal and the process in which carrageenan is extracted from the red seaweed has become the cornerstone of a debate about allowed ingredients in organic products. (more…)

Side-by-Side Comparison of Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s, and Fresh Market

Habit, convenience, and proximity are major factors in shaping where we purchase food and which foods we purchase. The decision to eat a healthier diet can be much easier than deciding which foods to purchase and from where to purchase them. While healthier options are becoming more widely available, where you live may determine what is or is not available. In Indianapolis, the 12th largest city in the United States, we have at least one farmers market year round, as well as Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s, and Fresh Market. Proximity plays a major role in where I shop most frequently, but perhaps that is not the most important factor.

Farmers markets may give you the best opportunity for the freshest produce and to speak with farmers about the conditions in which animals and produce are raised, but they are often not available throughout the week and selection of goods can vary. Whether we like it or not, we all visit a grocery at least occasionally, and the majority of Americans buy the majority of their food at a box store. Your farmers market may not offer fresh-made pasta or gluten-free baked goods like mine does, but your Whole Foods is probably a lot like my Whole Foods. (more…)

3 Ways to Keep America Beautiful, Healthy, and Vibrant

More than 200 years after the signing of the Declaration of Independence we still celebrate with parades on Main Street and decorate with the red, white, and blue. From hot dogs and potato salad to roasted marshmallows around the campfire, Americans do not take the Fourth lightly. As dusk appears, the boom of fireworks and the dazzling spectacle of illuminated ash will light up the faces of generations of people who are proud to call America their home.

With current fire dangers in parts of the southwest, incidences of obesity on the rise, and an environment that desperately needs tender loving care, it might be of interest to those who truly love America to evolve their celebratory behaviors.

We’ve got just a few suggestions to help keep America the beautiful, healthy and vibrant country that we all love so dearly. (more…)

Healthy Surprise Delivers a Bounty of Vegan Snacks Each Month

Healthy Surprise is a company that ships out gluten-free, vegan, and raw snacks to the door steps of their subscribers. Founder Joe Winke stumbled upon the idea of sending healthy snacks to people after a friend sent him healthy food in the mail for his birthday. Who knew that making an assortment of healthy snacks and putting them in boxes would be a hit?

The snacks range from nuts to granola bars and cookies. You can find them in larger grocery stores or at your local health food store, and certainly online.

Joe and other “snackologists” try all of the snack items before they are placed in the boxes. Since people are particularly fond of kale, Healthy Surprise tries to send kale snacks every month in the boxes, but the rotation of different snack items changes monthly because they want subscribers to receive a healthy surprise each month! (more…)

Chipotle Puts its Dairy Out to Pasture

Chipotle, how do I love thee? Let me keep counting the ways! This place keeps getting better and better. Chipotle just announced that effective this June, 100 percent of their stores’ sour cream and 65 percent of their restaurants’ cheese will be made from pasture-raised cows.

A pasture-raised cow is one that has daily access to outdoor pastures. Additionally, the animals are never fed hormones, only a vegetarian diet. The leading Mexican grill chain has made some bold and progressive moves in the last year, challenging the existing quality found in typical fast-food. Chipotle has already made a commitment to serve only naturally raised meats that contain no hormones or antibiotics. As a further commitment to health and sustainability, Chipotle buys its produce from farms located within 250 miles of each location. They also support family farms with The Chipotle Cultivate Foundation, which helps farms with sustainable practices and promotes healthy eating for kids. (more…)

Yogini Cleanies Wipe Away Sweat and Germs After a Workout

If there is one benefit from working out at a full-service gym or fitness center, it is being able to take a shower after sixty sweaty minutes on the elliptical machine. There is not a lot that is more uncomfortable than driving home in sticky Spandex bike shorts after a spin class, or freezing in an air-conditioned supermarket because your sopping wet post-aerobics jog bra is clinging to your chest while you’re trying to do a little shopping.

Thankfully, there are Yogini Cleanies, a product that not only refreshes, but is also environmentally conscious.

Showers are great after a sweat-inducing workout, but they are not always available, and most yoga studios do not offer locker rooms equipped with a space to clean up after class, especially important if you’ve ever tried hot yoga. So what are you to do?

Yogini Cleanies, a sustainable, botanical-based cleansing product, are 100% bamboo wipes made with certified organic oils. Carefully designed to naturally cleanse the body while maintaining an eco-friendly appeal, Yogini Cleanies can be used after yoga to wash away sweat from your body or your mat. (more…)

The Anti-Arthritis Diet Revealed: How to Tap in to the Healing Power of Food

By Gale Tern

Can arthritis be cured through diet? Is there such a thing as an anti-arthritis diet? Science and our own government have shown that almost every chronic degenerative disease acquired by Americans is the result of a nutritional deficiency. Many years ago, while researching the effects of nutrition on health, I ran across a stunning newspaper article with a heading that read, “21-Year Cover Up: Suppressed 1971 U.S. Report Linked Diet, Disease”.

This article explained how our own government through the USDA had suppressed a U.S. government report that had been released way back in 1971. The report was called Human Nutrition, Report No. 2, Benefits from Human Nutrition Research. This report was the culmination of $30 million worth of federal nutrition research and it revealed for the first time that all major health problems and killer diseases were the result of poor diet and nutrition.

The upshot of all this is that arthritis, like many other diseases, has its roots in nutrition. So what diet works for those who suffer from arthritis? Well arthritis is an umbrella term. The word arthritis literally means joint inflammation, but is often used to refer to a group of more than 100 rheumatic (inflammatory) diseases that can cause pain, stiffness, and swelling in the joints. These diseases may affect not only the joints but also other parts of the body.

Thus, an anti-arthritis diet must be tailored to the condition you suffer. However, in the main I can tell you what has been found to work for most sufferers of arthritis. (more…)