Tag: antioxidants

Sweat Week: Beat the heat with watermelon

The Discovery Channel’s got Shark Week; well, I bring you Sweat Week — a week of posts on surviving the heat waves this summer.

In April, I had the opportunity to go to Fort Myers, Florida, to learn all about watermelon from an Ontario watermelon grower, Brian Arrigo. Here are a few things I learned about watermelon while down in Florida:

  • Watermelon’s been shown to help reverse the effects of hardening arteries.
  • It’s beneficial for the cardiovascular system (due to the citrolene it contains).
  • It’s the cheapest per lb of anything you’ll find in the produce section.
  • The watermelons I was seeing in Florida being picked on Thursday would be in stores up here in Toronto as quickly as Monday (ie. four days!).
  • Once a watermelon is sliced, you should consume it within the next 10 days.

No worries about needing to consume it within 10 days for me, especially when there are delicious recipes such as this watermelon cairpirinha — yet another way I’m keeping cool in the heat.

Watermelon Cairpirinha

1 lime
5 quarter-sized   slices ginger
2   tsp (10 mL) sugar
6 chopped   mint leaves
2   oz (56.8 mL) watermelon purée
2   oz (56.8 mL) cachaça
1   oz (56.8 mL) grenadine

Muddle lime, ginger, sugar and mint and transfer to a martini shaker. Add watermelon purée, grenadine, cachaça and ice. Shake. Pour into a glass and serve.

Makes one cocktail.

TIP: Vodka or rum can be used in place of cachaça.

PER SERVING:283 calories, 0 g fat, 0 g saturated fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 12 mg sodium, 39 g carbohydrates, 0 g fibre, 0 g protein. % RDI: 0% calcium, 2% iron, 1% vitamin A, 13% vitamin C.

SOURCE: National Watermelon Promotion Board, www.watermelon.org.

5 Comments July 9, 2012

Popcorn’s health benefits

Popcorn contains more polyphenols (a type of antioxidant) than fruits and vegetable (the pholyphenols get diluted by the water content of fresh produce), according to new research presented at the  243rd National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society. And those pesky hulls that get caught in your teeth? They contain the most polyphenol and fibre content.

( Too bad the bag(s) I hope to pick up from Garrett’s Popcorn in Chicago before I fly home don’t qualify as healthy — the greasy cheese and sugary caramel of the “Chicago mix” probably cancels out any polyphenol benefits… :)

Leave a Comment March 26, 2012

Eat more fruits & veg, people!

Us Canadians aren’t doing so well when it comes to eating enough fruits and veggies, y’all.

In a Concordia University (my alma mater, woot woot!) study published in the Nutrition Journal adults aged 30 to 60 are not getting enough in their diets. But as a whole, Quebecers are consuming more f&v than the rest of us (maybe La Belle Province will be known for that now, more than being the only place Pepsi outsells Coke?…Nah, probably not).

(and, hey, I’m from Quebec — but I know I could be eating more roughage…didn’t inherit that, I guess, only the poutine-eating habit).

Other findings? Women eat more fruits and veg than men (5.4 x a day versus 4.5 x), which isn’t too surprising, I don’t think. But here’s an interesting one:

People with a weak social network eat less fruits and veg compared to those who have a strong social network.

What’s that all about? The study doesn’t say. But seems win-win, more friends and socializing and you eat healthier overall going hand in hand? Sounds like a plan.

2 Comments January 12, 2012

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