How Turning the Food Pyramid on Its Head Can Help You Slim Down

Some of you may be old enough to recall the 1992 Food Pyramid, which had grains as the largest bottom block of the pyramid, encouraging you to eat 6-11 servings of bread, cereal, rice and pasta each day. This excess of carbohydrates, most of them refined, is precisely the opposite of what most people need to stay healthy. At the very top of the pyramid was fats and sugar, and while sugar clearly belongs there, healthy fats do not. In fact, most people would benefit from getting anywhere from 50 to 70 percent of their total calories from healthy fats!

via How Turning the Food Pyramid on Its Head Can Help You Slim Down.

Caffeine withdrawal now classified as a mental disorder | Death and Taxes

This almost makes me want to draw a line in the sand.

The American Psychiatric Association recently released an updated version of its manual of mental disorders (DSM-5) and this time it includes a new addition: Caffeine withdrawal.

It’s mighty easy to get addicted to coffee—it’s even encouraged, provided for free in workplaces. But many of us have found ourselves in the classic addict’s conundrum: After a while it stops getting you up—you just feel down without it. So you decide to kick it and switch to peppermint tea for a week. All hell breaks loose—you’re dazed, racked with a throbbing headache and tired as hell. So you think, just one cup. Next thing you know you’re putting off quitting until next week.

via Caffeine withdrawal now classified as a mental disorder | Death and Taxes.

Do Local Businesses Deserve Your Money?

“LOCAL” DOES NOT EQUAL “GOOD.”

Local equals local. For instance, there are many coffee shops around. One of the local coffee shops invariably has a huge line, and locals know to go there only if you have some extra time. The coffee is good, but not amazing. Are they extra kind there? No. Do they greet people? No.

The local Dunkin Donuts is faster. They’re not much more kind (I mean, they’re not unkind, but they just do what they do with little beyond the script). Is that good? Depends on what you want.

via Do Local Businesses Deserve Your Money?.

Eat Play Love Des Moines!: A little bit of El Salvador, big taste!

Wow! I’m sad it took us so long to discover this place. It isn’t much from the outside, but there is a small parking lot that will fit 10-12 cars that is well-lit. They have the inside decorated with souvenirs from El Salvador and it really is interesting to look at. Don’t get me wrong, I love to sip a glass of wine and enjoy the ambiance of a popular, overpriced, crowded restaurant, but sometimes it isn’t about the experience and it’s all about the food. And you’ll get lots of good food here. The restaurant seats about 12 parties. We arrived about 6pm with no wait.

via Eat Play Love Des Moines!: A little bit of El Salvador, big taste!.

Behind the scenes at a McDonald’s food photo shoot

Behind the scenes at a McDonald’s food photo shoot.

Why does McDonald’s food look so much better in the ads than at the restaurant? Watch as the director of marketing for McDonald’s Canada buys a Quarter Pounder at McDonald’s and compares that to a burger prepared by a food stylist and retouched in post by an image editor.

Video after the jump.

Fiber Foods Helps You Slim Down, and I Toasted the Muffins

As our household becomes more conscious of the foods we eat (and I sit at my desk hypocritically drinking a delicious blueberry mocha) articles like this mean a little more than than they ever have before.  Fiber in my diet? Sure.

This tip looks interesting: Heat up a bowl of oat bran instead of oatmeal; it has nearly 2 g more fiber. Add even more flavor and fiber by stirring in 1/4 cup of raisins or chopped dates before nuking it.

Read more at Fiber Foods Helps You Slim Down | Women’s Health Magazine.

And, while arguably not the best for our diets but still yummy, here’s the recipe Stacy used for our cranberry and orange muffins this weekend.  They were *delicious outside of the inconvenient truth that I’d left them just a few minutes too long in the oven (the muffins weren’t burnt, but they were *toasty).

Lastly, in the hunt to eat food that isn’t *terribly saturated with chemicals/pesticides (they’re unavoidable, but to at least be aware of what’s being ingested), here’s a handy guide to which fruits and veggies absorb the most pesticides (and may be worth spending a little more to go organic).

All this said, I’m not a hardcore diet/organic/veggie/juice freak. I’m far from it. But I am trying to be more aware of what’s going into my body, how my body digests it, and what, naturally, constitutes a balanced meal.  Articles like these help me get closer to a healthy lifestyle.

And blueberry mochas? Not so much.