Healthy BreakFast Smoothie

breakfast smoothie

Ingredients

  • 1 small ripe banana
  • about 140g blackberries, blueberries, raspberries orstrawberries (or use a mix), plus extra to serve
  • apple juice or mineral water, optional
  • runny honey , to serve

Method

  1. Slice the banana into your blender or food processor and add the berries of your choice. Whizz until smooth. With the blades whirring, pour in juice or water to make the consistency you like. Toss a few extra fruits on top, drizzle with honey and serve.

Difficulty and servings

EasyServes 1

Preparation and cooking times

Preparation timePrep 5 mins

Gluten-free

Method

  1. Slice the banana into your blender or food processor and add the berries of your choice. Whizz until smooth. With the blades whirring, pour in juice or water to make the consistency you like. Toss a few extra fruits on top, drizzle with honey and serve.
TryGiving it a twist

Use melon or a slightly over-ripe mango instead of the banana. Or add a pot of low-fat natural yogurt to make an extra-creamy smoothie.

Per serving

123 kcalories, protein 2.0g, carbohydrate 29.0g, fat 0.0 g, saturated fat 0.0g, fibre 3.0g, salt 0.02 g

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14 Very Effective Communication Skills

14 Effective communication skills

1. Give them the impression that you’re enthusiastic about talking to them. Give them the impression that you would rather talk to them than anyone else in the world. When you give them the impression that you are excited about talking to them and that you care about them, you make them feel supremely positive and confident about themselves. They’ll be more likely to open up to you and have deep, personable conversations with you.

2. Ask open-ended questions about their interests. Ask questions that will get them to talk about their interests and their life in a way they never have before. Go into as much detail as possible and help them gain a new perspective about themselves and where they want to go in life.

3. Adapt to their body language and feelings. Get a feel for how they are feeling at the moment by observing their body language and voice tone. From this standpoint, you can tailor your words, body language, and voice tone to the ones they are more likely to respond positively to.

4. Show them approval: Tell them what you admire about them and why. One of the best ways to instantly connect with people is to be forthright and tell them exactly why you like or admire them. If being too direct isn’t appropriate, insinuate with a few indirect statements here and there. Either approach can be equally as effective.

5. Listen attentively to everything they say. Don’t focus too much on what you’re going to say next as they are talking. Instead, listen to every word they say and respond back as relevantly and smoothly as possible. This shows people that you are truly listening to what they have to say and you are fully engaged and in the moment with them. Also make sure to ask questions whenever there’s something they say that you don’t quite understand. You want to avoid all possible lapses in communication if you want to develop a fully engaged relationship with that person.

6. Give them prolonged eye contact. Strong eye contact communicates to the other person that you are not only captivated by them and what they have to say but that you are also trustworthy. When done in moderation, they will also assume you are confident in yourself because of your willingness to face them directly. As a result, people will naturally want to pay more attention to you and what you have to say.

7. Reveal as much about yourself as possible. One of the best ways to earn someone’s trust is to reveal yourself as openly as you can. Tell stories about interesting events from your life or just describe zany instances from normal everyday life. As you do this, make sure not to mention things that stray too far from where their interests and values lie. You can let them find out more about you as the relationship progresses.

8. Give the impression that you’re both on the same team. Use words like “we, us, we’re, our, and ourselves” to instantly build a bond. When you use those words, you make it seem like you and the other person are on the same team while everyone else seems more distant from the two of you.

9. Give them your best smile. When you smile at people, you communicate that you like them and their presence brings you happiness. Smiling at them will cause them to subconsciously want to smile back at you which will instantly build rapport between the two of you.

10. Offer helpful suggestions. Recommend restaurants you’ve been to, places you’ve been to, movies you’ve seen, helpful people they’d like to meet, books you’ve read, career opportunities and whatever else you can think of. Describe what was so great about those people, places and things and how they might appeal to the other person. If you suggest enough ideas that interest them, they will look at you as a “go to” person when they need to make a decision about what to do next.

11. Give them encouragement. If the person you’re dealing with is younger or in a more difficult position than you, they might want to hear some words of encouragement from you since you are more experienced or you seem to be doing well in life. This helps even out the relationship. If you want to have a healthy relationship with that person, you don’t want to seem like you have it all while the other person has nothing. Convince them that they can surpass their problems and limitations and they will look forward to having you as a person to talk to.

12. Appear to have a slightly higher energy level than the other person. Generally, people want to be around those who lift them up, instead of bringing them down. If you consistently have a lower energy level than other people, they will naturally gravitate away from you in favor of someone who is more energetic. To prevent this from happening, consistently indicate with your voice and your body language that you have a slightly higher energy level so that they’ll feel more energized and positive while around you. Don’t be so energetic that you put people off, but have just the right amount of energy and aliveness that will slightly build up their enthusiasm.

13. Say their name in a way that is pleasing to their ears. A person’s name is one of the most emotionally powerful words for them. But it’s not necessarily how often you say someone’s name that has an impact but how you say it. It may help if you practiced saying a person’s name for a minute or two so that you’ll induce just the right emotional reaction you’re going after. Invariably, if you state their name the most eloquently out of everyone they know, they’ll find you to be the most memorable.

14. Offer to take the relationship a step further. There are a number of things you could do to advance your friendship with someone: offer to eat with them, talk over a cup of coffee, see a sports game, have a beer or two with them, etc. Even if people don’t take you up on your offers, they will be flattered that you like them enough to want to take the friendship to a deeper level. In a way, they will look up to you because you have the guts to take charge of your life and build friendships instead of expecting those friendships to magically appear for you.

15 Best Diet Tips Ever — by WebMd.

Everyone knows the keys to losing weight: Eat less and exercise more. Sounds simple enough, but in the context of real life and its demands, it can be anything but simple. So how do successful losers do it? –diet

Best Diet Tip No. 1: Drink plenty of water or other calorie-free beverages.

People sometimes confuse thirst with hunger. So you can end up eating extra calories when an ice-cold glass of water is really what you need.

“If you don’t like plain water, try adding citrus or a splash of juice, or brew infused teas like mango or peach, which have lots of flavor but no calories,” says Cynthia Sass, RD, a spokeswoman for the American Dietetic Association.

Best Diet Tip No. 2: Think about what you can add to your diet, not what you should take away.

Start by focusing on getting the recommended 5-9 servings of fruits and vegetables each day.

“It sounds like a lot, but it is well worth it, because at the same time you are meeting your fiber goals and feeling more satisfied from the volume of food,” says chef Laura Pansiero, RD.

You’re also less likely to overeat because fruits and vegetables displace fat in the diet. And that’s not to mention the health benefits of fruits and vegetables. More than 200 studies have documented the disease-preventing qualities of phytochemicals found in produce, says Pansiero.

Her suggestion for getting more: Work vegetables into meals instead of just serving them as sides on a plate.

“I love to take seasonal vegetables and make stir-fries, frittatas, risotto, pilafs, soups, or layer on sandwiches,” Pansiero says. “It is so easy to buy a variety of vegetables and incorporate them into dishes.”

Best Diet Tip No. 3: Consider whether you’re really hungry.

Whenever you feel like eating, look for physical signs of hunger, suggests Michelle May, MD, author of Am I Hungry?

“Hunger is your body’s way of telling you that you need fuel, so when a craving doesn’t come from hunger, eating will never satisfy it,” she says.

When you’re done eating, you should feel better — not stuffed, bloated, or tired.

“Your stomach is only the size of your fist, so it takes just a handful of food to fill it comfortably,” says May.

Keeping your portions reasonable will help you get more in touch with your feelings of hunger and fullness.

Best Diet Tip No. 4: Be choosy about nighttime snacks.

Mindless eating occurs most frequently after dinner, when you finally sit down and relax.

“Sitting down with a bag of chips or cookies in front of the television is an example of eating amnesia, where you mindlessly eat without being hungry, but out of habit,” says American Dietetic Association spokesperson Malena Perdomo, RD.

Either close down the kitchen after a certain hour, or allow yourself a low-calorie snack, like a 100-calorie pack of cookies or a half-cup scoop of low-fat ice cream. Once you find that you’re usually satisfied with the low-cal snack, try a cup of zero-calorie tea, suggests Perdomo.

Best Diet Tip No. 5: Enjoy your favorite foods.

“I think putting your favorite foods off limits leads to weight gain because it triggers ‘rebound’ overeating,” says Sass.

Instead of cutting out your favorite foods altogether, be a slim shopper. Buy one fresh bakery cookie instead of a box, or a small portion of candy from the bulk bins instead of a whole bag.

“You can enjoy your favorite foods, but you must do so in moderation,” says Sass.

Best Diet Tip No. 6: Enjoy your treats away from home.

When you need a treat, Ellie Krieger, RD, host of Food Network’s Healthy Appetite, suggests taking a walk to your local ice cream parlor or planning a family outing.

“By making it into an adventure, you don’t have to worry about the temptation of having treats in the house, and it is a fun and pleasurable way to make it work when you are trying to lose weight,”

And for those times you just can’t get out? Krieger stocks her kitchen with fresh fruit, which she thinks can be every bit as delicious as any other dessert.

Best Diet Tip No. 7: Eat several mini-meals during the day.

If you eat fewer calories than you burn, you will lose weight. But when you’re hungry all the time, eating fewer calories can be challenging.

“Studies show people who eat 4-5 meals or snacks per day are better able to control their appetite and weight,” says obesity researcher Rebecca Reeves, DrPH, RD.

She recommends dividing your daily calories into smaller meals or snacks and enjoying as many of them as you can early in the day — dinner should be the last time you eat.

Best Diet Tip No. 8: Eat protein at every meal.

Protein is more satisfying than carbohydrates or fats, and thus may be the new secret weapon in weight control.

“Diets higher in protein [and] moderate in carbs, along with a lifestyle of regular exercise, have an excellent potential to help weight loss,” says University of Illinois protein researcher Donald Layman, PhD.

Getting enough protein helps preserve muscle mass and encourages fat burning while keeping you feeling full. So be sure to include healthy protein sources, like yogurt, cheese, nuts, or beans, at meals and snacks.

Best Diet Tip No. 9: Spice it up.

Add spices or chiles to your food for a flavor boost that can help you feel satisfied.

“Food that is loaded with flavor will stimulate your taste buds and be more satisfying so you won’t eat as much,” says Perdomo.

When you need something sweet, suck on a red-hot fireball candy for a long-lasting burst of sweetness with just a few calories.

Best Diet Tip No. 10: Stock your kitchen with healthy convenience foods.

Having ready-to-eat snacks and meals-in-minutes staples on hand sets you up for success. You’ll be less likely to hit the drive-through or call in a pizza order if you can make a healthy meal in 5 or 10 minutes.

Sass stocks her kitchen with:

  • 94% fat-free microwave popcorn (20-25 calories per cup, and you can make it in two minutes or less)
  • Frozen vegetables
  • Bags of pre-washed greens
  • Canned diced tomatoes
  • Canned beans
  • Whole-grain wraps or pitas
  • Pre-cooked grilled chicken breasts
  • A few containers of pre-cooked brown rice

Within minutes, she can toss together a healthy medley.

Best Diet Tip No. 11: Order children’s portions at restaurants.

“When you are eating out, order a child’s pizza or a small sandwich as an easy way to trim calories and get your portions under control,” suggest Perdomo.

Another trick is to use smaller plates. This helps the portions look like more, and if your mind is satisfied, your stomach likely will be, too.

Best Diet Tip No. 12: Eat foods in season.

“If you don’t love certain fruits or vegetables, it could be because you ate them out of season when they have little taste or flavor,” says Pensiero. “When you eat seasonally, fruits and vegetables are more flavorful, at their best, and I promise you won’t be disappointed.”

At GiGi’s Trattoria, her restaurant in Rhinebeck, N.Y., she serves simple fruit desserts, like naturally sweet strawberries topped with aged balsamic vinegar, or low-fat yogurt or fresh berries in a compote.

Best Diet Tip No. 13: Swap a cup of pasta for a cup of vegetables.

Simply by eating less pasta or bread and more veggies, you could lose a dress or pants size in a year.

“You can save from 100-200 calories if you reduce the portion of starch on your plate and increase the amount of vegetables,” says Sass.

Best Diet Tip No. 14: Use non-food alternatives to cope with stress.

Sooner or later, you’re going to be faced with a stressful situation. Instead of turning to food for comfort, be prepared with some non-food tactics that work for you.

Sass suggests reading a few chapters in a novel, listening to music, writing in a journal, practicing meditative deep breathing, or looking at a photo album of loved ones.

Best Diet Tip No. 15: Be physically active.

Although it may seem counterintuitive, don’t use exercise either to punish yourself for eating or to “earn” the right to eat more.

“When you do, it sets up a negative thought pattern, which is why so many people say they hate to exercise,” says May.

Instead, focus on how great you feel, how much better you sleep and how much more energy you have when you exercise. Physical activity is good for you whether you are trying to lose weight or not, so keep it positive and build a lifelong habit.

Top 10 Cholesterol Lowering Foods

Cholesterol is a steroid lipid (fat) found in the blood and is necessary for proper functioning of cell membranes. Our bodies already manufacture all the cholesterol we need, so it is not necessary to consume more. High levels of cholesterol have been shown to increase the risk of heart disease and stroke. Cholesterol lowering foods should be incorporated into everyone’s diet for optimal health. The percentages by which these foods lower cholesterol reflect people who have high levels of cholesterol greater than 200 mg/dL, and have been diagnosed with hypercholesterolemia. Different diets, lifestyles, and foods will work differenlty for different people. It is recommended that you buy a Cholesterol Test Kit, so you can monitor your cholesterol levels at home and see which diet and lifestyle works best for you. Below is a list of foods which lowers the “bad” LDL cholesterol, while leaving the good HDL cholesterol largely unaffected.

 

#1: Monounsaturated and Polyunsaturated Fats (Olive Oil, Canola Oil, Peanut Oil, Peanuts, Olives, Avocados)
Cholesterol Reduction:18%1,2,37
Substituting saturated animal fats and other high cholesterol foods with healthier fats like olive oil, canola oil, peanut oil, and avocados is the most powerful thing you can do to achieve a drastic reduction in your LDL cholesterol. Specifically a diet high in olive and sunflower oil, that contains 12.9% saturated fat, 15.1% monounsaturated fat, and 7.9% polyunsaturated fat can achieve an 18% reduction in LDL cholesterol vs people on a diet higher in saturated fat.1

#2: Bran (Oat, Rice)

Bran, particularly oat bran, has been proven effective in lowering LDL cholesterol levels. Add bran to hot cereals and bread. Also, eating whole oatmeal every morning, or switching to whole products like brown rice, can help you get more bran in your diet and lower your cholesterol numbers.  Continue reading

How to Cool Yourself Without Air Conditioning

Don’t forget that the human race lived for many, many years without air conditioning. Within the limits of your particular health situation, your body can acclimate to the summer increase in temperature. Just become accustomed to the fact that you may have to alter your activities and schedule to “beat the heat.”

  • Put a small pillow in the freezer an hour or two before you go to bed. Put a few plastic shopping bags over it to keep ice from forming on the fabric.
  • Use silk or satin pillowcases, and sateen sheets. These fabrics will feel smoother and cooler as you sleep.
  • Drink water frequently. Your body will feel cooler if you are hydrated.
    Try drinking eight ounces of water at least every hour. Adding mint
    leaves, or orange, lemon or cucumber slices to your water makes it more
    refreshing.
  • Stock your freezer with flavored ice treats. Freeze  a bag of chopped fruit such as watermelon, pineapple or lemons. Cooling down can be a tasty experience too!
  • Eat spicy food- It’s not a coincidence that many people in hotter regions of the world eat spicy food. Spicy (hot to the taste) food increases perspiration which cools the body as it evaporates. It also can cause an endorphin rush that is quite pleasant and might make you forget about the heat.
  • Try a heat snorkeling system. Take a glass and fill it almost to the brim with ice cubes. Hold it up to your mouth and blow gently into the cup. The ice causes the air you are blowing into the cup to cool down drastically, and since the air only has one way out of the cup (the hole which should now be aiming right at your face) the cold air is forced out over your skin.
    • To put the “snorkeling system” to more efficient use, point a fan into a square of four cups filled with ice water and ice cubes. The cooler air in the cups have no where to go but out. Each night, refreeze the cubes and open the windows instead.
  • During the day, don’t take a hot shower, wash dishes and clothes or cook  until after dark. Make sure your pot lids are tight-fitting. Make sure the door gasket seals on your oven, washer and dishwasher are in good shape and have no breaks or rips.

Feel good that you are actually helping the environment by not running an energy-draining air conditioner!