Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Homestyle Blueberry Muffin Recipe

Blueberry Muffins

(Jordan Marsh Blueberry Muffin Recipe)


½ c. butter
2 c. flour
1 c. sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1.2 c. milk
2 tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. salt
2 ½ c/ fresh blueberries
2 tsp. sugar (for the top of the muffins)

Mash 1/2 c. blueberries in a small bowl and set aside.

Mix all the ingredient s, except the blueberries, until smooth. Stir in the mashed blueberries and then the remaining 2 cups of berries.

Grease the muffin tins, or use paper muffin cups in the tins, and fill each tin at least three-quarters full. Sprinkle sugar over each muffin before baking.

Bake at 375 degrees for 30 minutes.

This recipe makes approximately two dozen large blueberry muffins.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Facts about the Mediterranean Diet

The Mediterranean diet is not as restrictive as diets that limit calories, bread and other carbohydrates. It is
rather a healthy way of eating that includes whole grains, fruits, vegetables, fish and poultry. As the name implies, the diet mimics foods from Mediterranean countries, such as Greece, Crete, Spain and Italy.

Whole Grains, Fruits and Vegetables

During the first week of the Mediterranean diet, you can eat bread but it should be whole grain bread. The Mediterranean Food Pyramid suggests eating 4 to 6 servings of whole grain bread or other whole grains like couscous, rice, barley or pasta.  Along with whole grains, you should eat 4 to 8 servings of non-starchy vegetables each day. Starchy vegetables to avoid are corn, winter squash, potatoes and peas.  Include 2 to 4 servings of whole fruits in your daily Mediterranean menu. Limit fruit juices because they can contain excess sugar.

Dairy, Legumes and Nuts

When choosing dairy products for your diet plan, select low-fat milk, yogurt and cheese. The Mediterranean diet allows you to have 1 to 3 servings per day. The Mediterranean Food Pyramid also recommends eating 1 to 2 servings of legumes and 1 to 2 servings of nuts or seeds each day. These can include sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, all types of tree nuts, kidney beans, garbanzo beans, soybeans and lentils.


Protein for the Mediterranean diet is limited to seafood and poultry. You can eat 2 to 3 servings of seafood per week and 1 to 3 servings of poultry per week. The recommended serving size is about 3 ounces. Select fatty fish, such as salmon, sardines and herring because the fat gives you’re the health benefits of omega-3 fatty acids. Limit red meat to only a couple of servings each month and select only lean meats. Do not eat any processed meats, such as bacon, sausage and deli meats.

Not Just the Food

Fat and alcohol play a role in the Mediterranean diet, as well. Sautee your food using olive oil, rather than butter. The monounsaturated fat in olive oil has anti-inflammatory benefits. You can drink one to two glasses of wine per day when following this diet, preferably with meals.

Mediterranean Diet Health Benefits

According to Harvard Medical School, if you eat healthy Mediterranean foods, it can lower your risk of heart disease, stroke and could even live a longer life. Following a Mediterranean diet, could decrease age-related inflammation of your central nervous system, which can lead to chronic ailments and brain disease caused by aging. Eating Mediterranean foods may also improve insulin activity and metabolizing glucose.


The Everything Mediterranean Diet Book: Connie Diekman, Sam Sotiropoulos

Image Credit: By Rmjelley (Own work) [CC-BY-3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Friday, February 28, 2014

Best Lo-Carb Foods for Snacking and Meals

Following a lo-carb diet can be confusing sometimes, knowing what to have for snacks and meals. I posted an article with tips on following the Atkins Diet or other low carbohydrate diet plans.

If you're trying to cut down on carbs or want to start a low carbohydrate diet plan, check out these tips that list the best low carbohydrate foods for your diet. I wrote about the Atkins Diet suggestions from my four years following it myself.

I hope these lo-carb suggestions help you out with your diet plan.
Low Carbohydrate Foods

Also, check out some of the low-carbohydrate recipes I have posted on this blog. They are great for times when you're looking for something a little different to spice up your lo-carb diet.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Have You Tried Making Homemade Tomato Relish?

I posted the recipe to Homemade Tomato Relish, also known as Tomato Piccalilli. It is delicious on hot dogs, hamburgers or baked beans. My father used to like it with his fried eggs.
Homemade Piccalilli 

You can also make a version of the Piccalilli with hot peppers, if you like hot stuff. I've also put this in sandwiches and as a topping for baked chicken's breasts.

Take a look at the Piccalilli recipe and give it a try. I use a canner and make about 15 to 20 pints to store in my vegetable closet.

Photo Credit: By jeffreyw (Mmm... Cajun recipe pork sausage  Uploaded by Fæ) [CC-BY-2.0 (], via Wikimedia

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

The Benefits of Taking Fish Oil

Fish oil plays a role in heart health by providing you with omega-3 fatty acids. It also adds vitamins A and D to your diet, which a beneficial to eye health and bone growth. Another benefit of fish oil is its anti-inflammatory properties that provide relief from rheumatoid arthritis and menstrual cramps, according to the
New York Langone Medical Center.

Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Fish oil contains omega-3 fatty acids, which decrease the risk of heart disease and help lower cholesterol, according to the University of Massachusetts Medical School. You can get your recommended daily allowance of 0.8 to1 gram of omega-3 fatty acids by eating two 3-ounce servings of fish per week or by taking daily fish oil supplements that equal 1 gram of omega-3.

Fish Oil Vitamins

Cod liver oil is the only fish oil that contains vitamins A and D. One teaspoon of cod liver oil provides you with 4500 micrograms of vitamin A, which is six times more than the recommended daily allowance of 700 micrograms. One teaspoon of cod liver oil also contains 450 micrograms of vitamin D, which is 30 times more than the recommended 15 micrograms per day. NYU Langone Medical Center recommends caution when taking cod liver oil, so you do not exceed the upper limit of 3000 micrograms of vitamin A. Too much vitamin A can be toxic, while toxicity from too much vitamin D is less likely.

Fish Oil Supplements

When choosing a fish oil supplement, check the label for the two ingredients that make up omega-3 fatty acids, eicosapentanoic acid (EPA) and docosahexanoic acid (DHA). Even though a fish oil supplement states it is 100 milligrams of fish oil, that doesn’t mean it contains 1000 milligrams of omega-3 fatty acids. Consult the pharmacist if you can’t determine which fish oil contains the most omega-3 to ensure you get the health benefits of the fish oil.


Fish oil thins the blood, so if you take blood thinning prescriptions, such as warfarin, consult your doctor before taking any fish oil. One other drawback to taking fish oil is fishy tasting burps.


Image: By Wuhazet (Henryk Żychowski) (Own work) [GFDL ( or CC-BY-3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Thursday, January 30, 2014

How Much Protein Should a Teenager Have Every Day?

The amount of protein that a teenager needs each day depends upon his or her physical activity and weight.
Active teenagers need more protein each day.
Serving a variety of foods rich in plant and animal protein for breakfast, snacks and dinner ensures that your teenager gets all the protein needed to stay healthy.

Protein Pointers 

Protein consists of 20 amino acids that the body needs for strong muscles and bones. Amino acids are also responsible for strengthening the immune system to ward off illnesses and heal injuries. An active teenager also needs protein for energy when playing sports and staying alert in school. Protein is instrumental for healthy skin and hair, which is always a concern of teenagers. In order for a teenager to get the recommended daily allowance of protein each day, he or she should eat a variety of plant-based protein like beans, nuts and rice, as well as animal protein from meat, eggs, poultry and dairy products.

Calculating Specific Protein Needs

You can multiply the average recommended daily protein by the teenager’s weight for a more accurate amount of protein needed each day. For example, for inactive teenagers, multiply .36 times the bodyweight to find the daily protein needed. Using this formula, a sedentary teen weighing 145 pounds would need 52 grams of protein each day. If the teenager is active and weighs 145 pounds, multiply the weight times .54, which equals 78. The active teenager needs 78 grams of daily protein.

Daily Protein Ideas 

A tablespoon of peanut butter with a banana adds protein, potassium, vitamin C and niacin for eye health and muscle strength. Greek yogurt with berries supplies protein, vitamin A, vitamin C and fiber. Another protein snack is a handful of tree nuts. Oatmeal topped with walnuts gives 4 grams of protein for breakfast, while a whole wheat English muffin offers 3 grams of protein. Substitute white bread for whole grain pita for 3 grams of protein. A 3-ounce serving of meat, fish or poultry gives your teenager about 21 grams of protein.


Image: By Alex Proimos from Sydney, Australia (Teenagers at Play  Uploaded by russavia) [CC-BY-2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons