Friday, March 7, 2008

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Bedtime Snacks that Help You Sleep

It is always good (and healthier) to go for natural sedatives... those containing tryptophan, which is an amino acid component of many plant and animal proteins.

What does tryptophan do?

It is considered to be one of the ingredients necessary for your body to make serotonin, a neurotransmitter known for giving you the feelings of calm and making you sleepy.

Whats the trick here!

Well, you have to combine tryptophan containing foods with ample carbs... for this to work, it first has to make its way to the brain!

On the downside... all amino acids compete for that "transport" to the brain. Insulin is released when you add the carbs, which takes the competing amino acids and incorporates them into muscle, but leaves the tryptophan alone, making its way to the brain, convert to serotonin, and cause sleepiness.

Bedtime snacks that are serotonin-producing should not exceed 200 calories and should be eaten 30 mins before regular bedtime.

Here are a few great ideas/recipes:

For Adults
*6-8 oz container of non-fat, flavored yogurt topped with 2 tablespoons low-fat granola cereal
*Sliced apple with 1-2 teaspoons natural peanut butter
*3 cups low-fat popcorn – sprinkled with optional 2 tablespoons parmesan cheese

For Teens
*One cup healthy cereal with skim milk
*Low-fat granola bar
*Scoop of vanilla or strawberry low-fat ice cream

For Children
*1/2 cup low-fat vanilla pudding
*1/2 banana with 1-2 teaspoons peanut butter
*One cup skim milk with a bunch of grapes (or other fruit)

For the original article, click here.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Vitamin D

As received by email (from: Organic Kuwait)

Thanks Jumana

Why Vitamin D Supplements Are NOT the Same as Sunlight?

The assumption that vitamin D supplements will protect you against diseases associated with low vitamin D levels is incorrect, according to Australian researchers. The report found that vitamin D supplements are immunosuppressive and may actually make diseases worse.

Vitamin D Nuclear Receptor (VDR) influences the expression of over 1,000 genes, including those associated with diseases such as cancer and multiple sclerosis. According to the new study, supplemental vitamin D actually blocks VDR activation, which is the opposite effect to that of sunshine.

Instead of positively impacting gene expression, vitamin D supplements appear to suppress your immune system.

Vitamin D deficiency, the researchers pointed out, is likely not a cause of disease but rather is a result of the disease process. And increasing vitamin D intake may make the diseases worse.

The body regulates production of all the vitamin D it needs, the researchers said, and dysregulation of vitamin D by supplementation has been associated with many chronic diseases.


Monday, February 4, 2008

LOfat Pizza

Pizza anyone?

Have you tried LOfat pizza(s)?

1. Cheese Pizza

Kcal: 581
Fat: 20 gm
Protein: 36 gm
Carbs: 62 gm

2. Veggie Pizza

Kcal: 690
Fat: 20 gm
Protein: 39 gm
Carbs: 86 gm

What are you waiting for?

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Healthy Potato Salad



500 gms small potatoes

150 gm plain skimmed yogurt

1 small red onion chopped

1 celery stick chopped into small pieces

5 tablespoons mixed herbs (thyme, dill, parsley, tarragon...etc)

2 tablespoons white vinegar



Heat water in a saucepan and bring to boil

Cool the potatoes until they are tender but also still firm. Let it cool for a bit then cut them into cubes

In a seperate bowl, combine all the remaining ingredients

Add the cubed potatoes to the mixture

Put it in the fridge for an hour or so

Bon Apetit

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Symptom Checker

I came across this interesting website called Symptom Checker.
Basically you answer a series of questions to figure out what to do with your symptoms.
I find it very interesting and useful... though it wont make up for an actual doctor's visit.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Organic Kuwait

Organic Kuwait left a comment on our blog and I was curious to visit their blog. It is pretty interesting and very informative.

They write about children's books, natural child care, breastfeeding, yoga, healthy cooking, organic food and more.

They talk about pretty interesting subjects :-) Great effort. Way to Go Organic Kuwait :-)

Take a look at their blog, or visit their official website We Love Kuwait.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Water = Wonder Drug

Clearly, there are so many reason why you have to drink lots of water every single day....

1. Prevent dehydration

2. Pure liquid refreshment

3. Clean your body (detoxifies the liver and kidneys & carries waste out your body)

4. Healing processes

5. Help in digesting and absorbing vitamins and nutrients

6. Reduce headache (and dizziness)

7. Control your weight

8. Keep your skin healthy and glowing

9. It accounts for what makes each of us "human":
a. Blood: 83% water
b. Muscles: 75% water
c. Brain: 74% water
d. Bones: 22% water

A lot of studies showed that a large percentage of people walking around everyday are dehydrated. You might be one of them! All those other drinks we consume daily, such as coffee and tea, prompts the body to lose water, and when you are dehydrated your blood is actually THICKER and thus your body has to work HARD to cause blood circulation.... and also when you are dehydrated, your brain becomes less active and you feel dizzy!

Have you heard about the "8 by 8" rule?
On daily basis, drink eight 8-ounce glasses of water, or ideally half your body weight in ounces of water. To know the recommended water intake do this:
Divide your weight in lbs by two and the resulting number is basically the number of ounces of water you need per day.

If you dont know your weight in lbs, then divide your weight in KG by 30. The resulting number is the number of litres you need per day/

A good start is to measure your daily consumption of water for few days. If you are drinking less than the recommended numbers above try the following:

1. Carry a bottled water with you everywhere. You will find yourself reaching for it when you are thirsty instead of having coffee and tea... or soda!

2. When you plan to sit for a while (at home or in the office) have a glass of water next to you. Drink from that glass as you are doing your own thing. Try to monitor it and look at the time between now and then and have another glass every two hours or so.... some people say when there is a glass of water infront of them that they will drink it automatically without realizing it. This is because your mind knows you are thirsty, even if you don't!

3. Eat water rich foods (cucumbers, tomatoes, watermelons, cranberry juice,....)

4. Some people like to add some "flavor" to their water... thats not a bad idea actually! If it makes the taste better (by adding a tiny bit of fruit juice or add a lemon/lime wedges) than why not. I have also seen some people adding fresh mint leaves. You can also buy bottled flavoured water from your grocery store! You may also want to drink your water with a straw if you dont like the taste of it (it will skip your tongue LOL)

Please try to have all those eight glasses daily... you can divide'em throughout the day; two glasses when you wake up before breakfast, two glasses after your breakfast but before lunch, two between lunch and dinner, and two after dinner and before you sleep! Voila!

There has been considerable scientific debates concering the amount of daily water intake per day. Some people need to avoid drinking excessive amounts of water such as those with heart conditions or high blood pressure.

Also avoid drinking too much water while eating. This is because it causes your stomach to dilute acids which will consequently lead to digestion problems.

Keep in mind... water overdose is possible! Water intoxication can occur when the electrolytes in your body become so diluted, which will cause them problem in keeping the balance of water even in the inside and outside of cells (causing cells to burst).... but dont worry since this is very unlikely to happen.

And then again remember this.... Drinking that full glass of water first thing in the morning will help your body to wake up. So kick-start your day with that glass of water!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Fridge/Kitchen Cleaning!

What do you do when you go grocery shopping while you are hungry! Or when you go home after work and you are starving to death!!! I bet you go crazy picking out (or shall I say pigging out) chips, chocolate, candy, leftovers.....etc!


This is not the right way for a healthy living!

If you are aiming for a healthy lifestyle then you are better of with a clean kitchen and a clean fridge. By clean I mean a kitchen/fridge that are not flooded with junkie items!

So how about you do this:
1. Purge your fridge of unhealthy food items. This means you must take away your fattening mayo, your high in fat salad dressings.... and the ice cream out of the fridge.

2. Open your kitchen cabinets and start taking out problematic cookies, chips, candy, chocolate bars....etc!

3. Go grocery shopping and load up on diet friendly items.... reduced fat salad dressing, low fat mayo if you must have it, salsa, spicy mustard, low sodium chicken and vegetable broth, and non-stick cooking spray!

4. When shopping for herbs and spices look for the calorie-free, no-salt herbs and seasonings. Be it basil, chives, ginger, thyme, oregano, rosemary... you name it!

5. When you eat your meal (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) sneak in at least one piece of vegetable or fruit. This way you make sure you are getting your daily intake of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, water, and fiber. Plus they fill you up and give you energy while knocking off some pounds!

I will give you some examples on how you can add produce to your meal...
You can have a white omelet for breakfast and sneak in some veggies to go with it.
Also... cook in some vegetables with your soup!
Dip in baby carrots and peppers into your favorite low-cal salad dressing when you feel hungry
Add in strawberries and bananas to your cereal or yogurt
You can also freeze some grapes and bananas and eat it later... what a sweet treat

6. Eat whole grain carbs. They are hearty, satisfying, and will keep you fuller longer than their white counterparts. A great whole grain carbs to have on hand include; whole wheat flour, whole grain barley, oats, corn, brown and wild rice, wheat berries, whole wheat pasta and bread... and cereal too.

7. Buy a single serving of the food products that you tend to overeat.

8. Have the courage to try new lean proteins. Think outside the box and aim for assortment of lean proteins into your menu. Its good to set a schedule to ensure you vary your menus.

For example; one day you can try it the vegetarian way and opt for beans, lentils, or tofu. Next day have a lean turkey burger, then maybe the next day shrimps, followed by lean sirloin the following day... then roasted chicken. The day after try a grilled fish.

As I always say... read the labels carefully and look at the numbers! Just make sure to avoid canned/frozen fruit, with added sugar and corn syrup, and vegetables with sauce and salt.

To read the original article "Joy's Healthy Bite" on Yahoo! Health by By Joy Bauer, M.S., R.D., C.D.N. click here.
Or check out Joy's new book.

Monday, January 14, 2008


As received by email :-)
Thanks S.A.

These are some regular health mistakes.

All of us make little health mistakes that cause damage to our bodies in the long run - simply because we are unaware we are doing something wrong. Here are some of the most common mistakes made by many of us....

Crossing our legs
Although we may believe that this is the lady-like elegant way to sit, sitting this way cuts down circulation to your legs. If you don't want varicose veins to mar the beauty of your legs and compromise your health, uncross your legs every time you realize you have one knee on top of the other. The best way to sit is to simply place both legs together on the floor, balancing your weight equally. If you feel like changing position, instead of crossing your legs, simply move both legs together to one side. As an alternative, you could also consider crossing your legs loosely at the ankles. This is a classically elegant way to sit, and is far better for your legs and your health than sitting with your legs crossed at your knees.

Not changing our toothbrush
Most of us wait until most of the bristles have either fallen off, or are in such bad shape that we'd be embarrassed to pull out our brush in public. However, since not many of us need to pull out our brush in public, we carry on with our frayed one until we lose it. Replace your toothbrush often. Damaged bristles can harm the enamel, and don't massage your gums well. If you find brushing your teeth a pain like I do, but know you must do it, you might as well be doing it right. Imagine going through the annoyance of brushing your teeth twice a day only to find out that you're damaging your enamel every time you clean your teeth. Also, use a brush with soft bristles unless your dentist has advised otherwise.

Eating out often
There are oils that are high in cholesterol, and oils that cause little harm and are better for your heart. However, no matter how light the oil is, it is never a good idea to eat too much of it. Avoid fried foods. Remember that in all probability your favorite Indian food restaurant throws a huge, HUGE chunk of butter in a tiny bowl of dal. Rita, who worked in the kitchen of a 5 star hotel, was shocked when she saw the cook chop a 500gm butter slab in half, and throw half into a Paneer Makhani dish. No wonder the customers left licking their fingers. And no wonder they felt so stuffed and heavy afterwards. Limit outdoor eating unless you know that you're getting served light and healthy food.

Skipping breakfast
Never, ever skip breakfast. Remember, when you wake up in the morning it's been around 10-12 hours since your last meal. Your body needs food now, more than at any other time. Eat a heavy breakfast. You will then be busy through the day, and the calories will get expended quickly. If you are trying to diet, eat a light dinner. Here are some more common health mistakes we make. Being informed and making a few changes can help make us feel a whole lot better.

High heels
High heels sure look great, but they're murder for your back. This however doesn't mean you should steer clear of stilettos. Wear them, but not when you know you will be walking around a lot. Wear them when going out for lunch or dinner - when the only walking you will be doing is to your car, to the table, and back. Avoid high heels when you are going somewhere on foot. If you are constantly tempted to wear your heels, take a good look at your flats. Is there something about them you dislike? Invest in a new pair of beautiful flats or shoes with a low heel. Buy something you love, that you will enjoy wearing. If possible, get a matching bag. You will then enjoy your flats as much as you do your heels.

Sleeping on a soft bed
You don't have to sleep on the floor be kind to your back, but do make sure you have a firm mattress. Although a mattress on springs is soft and lovely to sink into, it's bad for your back. If you already have an old bed with springs, you don't need to invest in a new one - simply get a thick wooden plank put over the springs, and place the mattress on the plank. Similarly, if your mattress is old and lumpy, throw it out and get a new one. Your neck and your back will thank you. The same rule applies to sofas. If you will be spending hours on a sofa, get a firm yet comfortable one. Sofas you completely sink into are not the best idea.

Pillows No matter how comfortable sleeping with ten cushions is, have pity on your neck and resist. Sleep with one pillow, and make sure it is not too thick. If your pillow gets lumpy, discard it and go for a new one. Get a thin pillow if you sleep on your stomach and something a little thicker if you sleep on your back, to give your neck adequate support.

Not exercising
So all of us know we should exercise more, but many of us don't. This is a health mistake we consciously make! And why is that? Simply because we refuse to admit the damage we are causing to our bodies by not working out. A number of people only start working out once they've experienced a warning signal. Don't wait for a heart attack to strike before you decide to opt for a lifestyle change. Make the change now. You don't need to train for the marathon to be in top shape. Half an hour of brisk walking three to four times a week will make a world of differe nce to your health. You could then increase this to forty minutes, four times a week - and you're all set. If you haven't exercised for a week, you're making a mistake.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Sticky Honey Chick!

This is from me to you to try out.




3 skinless/boneless chicken breasts (cubed)

1 full spoon of margarine

2 tablespoons of lemon (juiced)

1 big clove of garlic (crushed)

1/3 cup of honey

Dried herbs (thyme, sherry, basil...etc) *Optional*



* Preheat the grill. Set it on medium heat.

* In a skillet and moderate heat, melt the butter. Add the crushed garlic. Let it cook till you can smell its aromatic scent. That should take a couple of minutes.

* In a bowl, mix in the honey with the lemon juice and dried herbs. Brush the chicken cubes with half of the honey/lemon mixture. Thread the chicken cubes onto skewers

* Sprinkle the grill and chicken skewers with olive oil. Grill and let it cook for about 8 - 10 minutes turning it in the process (make sure the chicken cubes are cooked well. You will notice that the meat is firm and its juice runs clear). Use the remaining mixture of honey/lemon towards the end of the grilling time.

Bon Appetit ;-)

Image From Flickr.

Monday, January 7, 2008

Snack Attack

Sometimes, in between meals, you get hungry and lets face it!!!! Its becoming a lifestyle to so many people here in Kuwait (well and around the world). Dont worry if you cant get through the day without snacking... but think! Why not grab a healthy snack?

If you feel hungry anytime during the day, don't starve yourself for the next meal... snack on something healthy and boost your energy. A healthy snack won't get in your way of maintaining a diet or healthy lifestyle. Ignore people who say: "No snacking between meals!" and get yourself a healthy snack :-D

So... What is a healthy snack???

Here are my suggestions to you:
1. Fresh Fruit/Raw Veggies. They are low in calories and high in minerals, fiber, and vitamins. So remember... when you go to school or work, bring along some... an apple, or banana... a cup of strawberries. Or some baby carrots and yogurt for dipping. You get the idea ;-)

2. Nuts. Almonds, pecans, pistachios, walnuts....etc. They contain calcium, zinc, copper, and vitamin E. They are also a great source of protein, carbs, and fat. When I say fat... I mean mono- and poly- saturated fat which are good for you (remember the post: "Live A Healthy Lifestyle & Maintain It"?). When you buy nuts make sure they are raw (not salted, smoked, roasted...etc). Have a handful of nuts for a snack and that should keep you satisfied till your next meal.

3. Non fat yogurt.

4. Whole grain food.... this should keep you full for long time. Try a whole grain muffin or a bagel... or even a cereal with skim milk. Here you go ;-)

Please make sure you wont replace your dinner with a snack. Skipping meals isn't healthy.

OK, here are some healthy recipes for snacks. I hope you like'em

1. Spread peanut butter on a whole grain bread, put two thin slices of apples on top and sprinkle it with cinnamon, then place it in the oven for a couple of minutes. You can add one table spoon of honey to it.

2. Fresh cut veggies (celery, baby carrots, cucumber wedges) and non fat yogurt. Yummmm

3. Put some tuna on a whole grain toast with some low fat shredded mozzarella and broil it for a couple of minutes. Take it out and sprinkle it with olive oil

4. Sprinkle thyme (Za'atar) on a half brown pita bread (Lebanese bread) with some olive oil and light labneh (sour cream). Heat it in the oven for a couple of minutes. Add in chopped cherry tomatoes if you like.

I hope my post was useful to you..... Seriously! Try to satisfy your attacks with a healthy and nutritious snacks.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

January Offer

"He who has health, has hope. And He who has hope has Everything. "
-A.J reb

The LOfat Group wishes you a Happy New Year and would like to share with you its promotion for the Month of January 2008 on the Chicken Vegetable Soup and the Broccoli Soup, where you get 10% off these hearty healthy soups :-)

Get Them Now!