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Eat Right With Color: Blue and Purple Fruits and Veggies

Jane Schwartz Harrison is a registered dietitian and lifestyle writer for www.myOptumHealth.com. She is also the editor of their Nutrition and Healthy Weight, Healthy Kids hubs, and provides nutrition expertise through writing articles, developing menu plans and recipes, and supporting a nutrition column. Working in the nutrition field for the past 20 years, Jane has maintained a successful private practice and lectures regionally.

Feeling blue? In nutrition circles, this would be considered a good thing! Blue and purple fruits and veggies are colored by natural plant pigments called “anthocyanins.” Anthocyanins, part of the flavonoid family, are powerful antioxidants.

A recent survey found that adults who eat purple and blue fruits and vegetables have reduced risk for both high blood pressure and low HDL cholesterol (the “good” kind); they are also less likely to be overweight.


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Raisin Awareness of Dental Health

california raisinsJoining us in March as the Featured Guest Blogger of the Month is California Raisins. They’ve got a team of nutrition professionals who want to ensure all of us are living as healthy as possible, providing information about healthy, natural snacks. See last week’s article about the benefits of Raisins and Walking.

We all know California Raisins are good for your diet and taste buds, but did you know they offer benefits for maintaining healthy choppers, too? A recent study conducted at the College of Dentistry, University of Illinois – Chicago (UIC), and published in the journal, Phytochemistry Letters, reveals raisins may benefit oral health. The fruit possesses antimicrobial phytochemicals that repress growth of some oral bacteria associated with dental cavities and gum disease!
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Raisins and Walking — Smart Steps for Heart Health

julie miller jonesFilling the Featured Guest Blogger of the Month for March is Julie Miller Jones, Ph.D., L.N., CNS, a professor emeritus of The College of St. Catherine in St. Paul, Minnesota. She also serves as the national nutrition advisor for the California Raisin Marketing Board.

On the heels of national Heart Health Month, there’s good news for older Americans. A new University of Connecticut study, published in the journal Metabolism: Clinical and Experimental, finds eating raisins and walking may reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease for both women and men in the 50 to 70 year-old age range. Raisins are not only fat and cholesterol-free, they also contribute heart-healthy components, such as fiber, potassium, and antioxidants.
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6 Tips for Staying Trim on a Budget with California Raisins

Who isn’t worried about money these days? With job insecurity, stock market tumbles and rising energy costs, most of us don’t have the money to spend on expensive ways to get in shape. Well, thanks to celebrity fitness trainer Valerie Waters and the California Raisins, you can learn tips on how to trim both your body and your budget in 2009.

“Getting in shape requires will power, not spending power,” said Waters. “There are many simple ways to attain fitness goals through diet, exercise and simple planning that will slim your waistline without slimming your wallet.”
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