Don’t Be Caught Downwind At Your Summer Barbecue

Five words or less(NewsUSA) – A summer barbecue is one of life’s simple pleasures. Yet, too many hot dogs, hamburgers, baked beans and ice cream cones can give way to another, less-pleasant fact of life: gas.
Indeed, daily flatulence is normal and necessary. In fact, the average person passes gas up to 25 times per day (the human body produces one to three pints daily). However, some people experience more gas than others: Seventy-two percent of adults report they’ve passed gas in public or in front of someone else, according to a recent survey. Often it’s simply the result of eating certain foods, including beans, cabbage, broccoli, apples, whole grains and cheese.
No matter the cause, passing gas in public can be, well, embarrassing. If you’re planning a Labor Day or end-of-summer barbecue, use these tips to avoid being caught downwind:
Manage gas intake. Restricting your diet may not be the best answer to managing your flatulence. After all, there are products on the market designed to counteract gas-producing foods. However, habits like eating too quickly, chewing gum or drinking through a straw can also lead to excess gas in your bowels. So don’t fret about taking your favorite foods off the menu — simply make sure your eating techniques are sound.
Deactivate gas. CharcoCaps Homeopathic AntiGas Formula is a natural and fast way to control flatulence. Beyond gas generated from foods addressed by other leading natural remedies, CharcoCaps helps relieve gas caused by eating dairy products like yogurt, proteins such as fish and foods high in fiber, like whole-wheat pizza. Its exceptionally porous material allows it to adsorb a large amount of gas for its size. Make sure to have some on hand!
Walk it off. Instead of keeping still after a meal, take the lead with a post-dinner stroll or a team volleyball game. Gas that sits in the bowels causes distension and pain, so once you have it, you might as well mobilize it.
For more information on how to treat flatulence, visit www.charcocaps.com.

A Recipe to Shake Up Taco Night

You want to serve fun, nutritious dinners but are stuck in a pizza and mac & cheese rut. The solution?

Create nutritious versions of kid-friendly favorites. For example, kids love to fill taco shells – just replace meat with fish or shrimp to add a great twist to a classic meal. When you serve fish tacos with fresh lettuce, tomatoes and cheese, kids enjoy fun finger food and get the “brain food” they need.

Dietary recommendations suggest that all Americans, including children, eat seafood twice a week. Fish is a natural source of lean protein and omega-3 fatty acids, which have been linked to better brain development. Plus, it contains essential vitamins and minerals, including iron; zinc; and vitamins A, B and D.

Tips for Making Exciting Ice Cream Sundaes

The Roman emperor Nero ate flavored ice to get through Italy’s stifling summers, and frozen treats have only become more popular since the 4th century B.C.  According to the International Dairy Foods Association, the United States produced 1.5 billion gallons of ice cream in 2008, and 90 percent of the population enjoys the sweet treat.

Americans also like to stick with the classics – vanilla accounts for over 25 percent of all ice cream sales. But there’s far more to ice cream than vanilla in a cone. Cold Stone Creamery , an ice cream parlor known for its customizable offerings, has a few tips for exploring more unique possibilities:

•  Think beyond chocolate sauce and cherries.
Cereal, chocolate chips, fruit, jams, sprinkles, pie fillings, cookies crumbles, brownie chunks, chopped nuts and whipped cream are only the beginning!

Kids of All Ages Look to Shake Up Summer

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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Nothing induces summertime nostalgia like a milkshake, and no wonder — milkshakes have a venerable and tasty history.

Milkshakes were developed as health drinks. Of course, ingredients like heavy cream, port wine and whiskey were considered healthy at the time. Originally sold in pharmacies, milkshakes soon made the transition to charming soda fountains, or malt shops.

Few Americans have old-fashioned soda fountains in the neighborhood anymore, and the milkshake loses a bit of its charm when it moves from tall, clear glass to fast-food styrofoam cup. But capturing the spirit of yesteryear at home takes only a few ingredients and a blender.

Vitamix (www.vitamix.com), maker of the Vitamix 5200, a blender so powerful that it can liquefy whole fruits and vegetables, including their peels and seeds, in seconds, encourages its customers to recapture the spirit of milkshakes past, whether by adding healthy ingredients, like bananas, or by mixing it up with alcohol to appeal to a more adult crowd.

Vitamix provides the following recipes for fun, funky milkshakes perfect for summertime sipping. The recipes are designed for the Vitamix 5200, but can be adjusted for your blender by blending the liquid and soft ingredients together before adding any of the harder ingredients.

Peanut Butter Cup Milkshake

Yield: 2 1/2 cups

1/4 cup milk

2 cups vanilla ice cream

2 tablespoons peanut butter

2 tablespoons chocolate syrup

Place all ingredients in the Vitamix in the order listed. Select Variable 1. Turn on the machine and slowly move to Variable 8. Blend for 35 to 45 seconds.

Choco-Banana Milkshake

Yield: 2 cups

1/4 cup milk

1 1/2 cups vanilla ice cream

2 tablespoons chocolate chips

1/2 banana, peeled

1 teaspoon instant coffee

2 tablespoons chocolate syrup

1 teaspoon vanilla extract.

Place all ingredients in the Vitamix in the order listed. Select Variable 1. Turn on the machine and move to Variable 10, then High. Blend for 15 seconds.

Irish Cookies and Cream

Milkshake

Yield: 3 1/2 cups

2 ounces Irish whiskey

3 cups vanilla ice cream

2 chocolate sandwich cookies

Place all ingredients in the Vitamix in the order listed. Select Variable 1. Turn on the machine and slowly increase speed to Variable 10, then High. Blend for 15 seconds.

Enjoy Low-Fat Cooking This Holiday Season

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<p>(<a   href=NewsUSA) – As the holiday season stretches on, you might start feeling a stretch in your waistline. While a decadent meal or two won’t hurt, weeks of cakes, pies, cookie trays and homemade fudge definitely take their toll.

But you can make delicious holiday foods while still skimping on the fat and calories — you just need the help of one surprising ingredient, yogurt.

Yogurt’s far more than smoothies and granola — low-fat, organic yogurt can substitute for higher-fat dairy, oil and shortening in recipes ranging from sour cream and onion dip to chocolate cake. Yogurt also provides protein and calcium, helping ease the guilt over an extra bite or two.

Not sure how to start? Stonyfield Farm provides the following tips for subbing yogurt in recipes:

– Reduce the calories in dips and dressings by swapping one cup of yogurt for one cup of mayonnaise or sour cream. Substituting low-fat organic yogurt for sour cream saves 46 grams of fat per cup.

– Use yogurt to tenderize meat. Yogurt also makes an excellent oil-free marinade.

– Skip the heavy cream, and use yogurt to thicken sauces. Just add a tablespoon of flour for every cup of yogurt.

– Use less butter. Replace half the butter with half as much yogurt to save fat and calories. For example, if a cookie recipe calls for a cup of butter, use a half cup of butter with a quarter cup of yogurt, instead.

– Use fewer eggs. If cholesterol’s a concern, try substituting a quarter cup of yogurt per egg, for up to two eggs per recipe.

– Use yogurt instead of buttermilk. If you only use buttermilk in one recipe, try using one cup of yogurt for every cup of buttermilk. You can also use yogurt instead of milk or water, but know to expect richer, moister results. Start by replacing one-quarter of the liquid with yogurt.

You can learn more about nutritious, delicious organic yogurt and find some fine recipes online at the Stonyfield Farm Web site, www.stonyfield.com.

Substitute Yogurt in Your Recipes for Healthier Meals

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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Eating healthier isn’t about deprivation, but replacing low-nutrient foods with healthy substitutes. Incorporating yogurt into basic recipes is the pefect way to start.

By using yogurt instead of sour cream, cream cheese, whipped cream or mayonnaise, meals become not only lower in calories and fat, but also higher in calcium and protein. In baked goods, yogurt can improve texture and keep foods moist. When it’s not heated, yogurt provides live active cultures, which can aid digestion and provide immune system support.

Greek yogurt — a thick strained yogurt — is especially versatile in cooking. It can be used in dips, spreads and low-fat desserts, or in any recipe that calls for cream, cream cheese, ricotta cheese, sour cream or other fats. You can even use Greek yogurt as an egg extender by replacing one egg with one-fourth cup yogurt.

For a decadent, reduced-fat dessert, try this recipe for Vanilla Cheesecake Made with Vanilla Oikos Organic Greek Yogurt:

Vanilla Cheesecake

Made with Vanilla Oikos

Organic Greek Yogurt

Makes 10 Servings

Ingredients:

2 1/2 cups shortbread cookies, finely ground

1/2 stick unsalted butter melted

1 1/2 cups vanilla Oikos Organic Greek Yogurt

4 large eggs

2 8-ounce packages low-fat cream cheese

1 cup super-fine sugar

1 tablespoon cornstarch

Juice and zest of 1 lemon

Directions:

In a medium-sized bowl, mix cookie crumbs and butter. Press into a 9-inch spring form pan and refrigerate for 15 minutes.

Preheat oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit. Add all ingredients for filling in bowl, and combine using food processor or hand mixer. Pour into cooled crust. Bake for 2 hours. Let cool overnight in refrigerator.

To find other recipes, or to use an online ingredient-substitution calculator that will compute how much yogurt to use in place of your original ingredients, visit www.stonyfield.com/recipes/substitutioncalc.cfm.

Cookie Sundae Adds Fun Twist to Classic

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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Cake and ice cream and brownie sundaes. The warmth of the freshly baked pastry, slowly working its way through decadent ice cream smothered in chocolate topping is a temptation few people can resist. And while the indulgent dessert remains popular, it takes a little innovation to make the dish unique.

Uno Chicago Grill, famous for their Chicago-style deep-dish pizza, put their spin on the dessert and now serve “The Deep Dish Cookie Sundae,” a cookie baked into a deep-dish shape, then covered with whipped cream and ice cream, and topped with chocolate sauce. Lucky for us, the dessert is easy to make at home:

The Deep Dish Cookie Sundae

8 ounces chocolate chip

cookie dough

1 scoop vanilla ice cream

1/2 cup whipped cream

1 ounce chocolate sauce

1 7-inch, deep-dish or cake pan

Temperature-resistant plate, lined with a moist napkin

Cooking spray (such as Pam)

1. Spray the pan, bottom and sides, with cooking spray.

2. Place your favorite cookie dough into the pan. Press the dough evenly over the bottom of the pan.

3. Bake the cookie according to dough directions.

4. Place hot cookie pizza onto the temperature-resistant plate lined with a moistened napkin.

5. Place a scoop of vanilla ice cream in the center of the cookie pizza.

6. Place whipped cream next to the ice cream in a decorative fashion.

7. Stripe chocolate sauce over the entire cookie pizza.

8. Serve immediately.

For other fun variations, try:

– A peanut butter cookie dough with chocolate and vanilla ice cream

– A chocolate-chip cookie dough with coffee ice cream.

– A sugar cookie dough with strawberry or blackberry ice cream

– A chocolate cookie dough with mint chocolate chip ice cream

– A snickerdoodle cookie dough with vanilla bean ice cream

– A chocolate cookie dough with cookies-and-cream ice cream

Let’s Talk About Sex After Menopause: What Women Should Know

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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – When asked about sex in a survey, 47 out of 51 postmenopausal women responded that having an active sex life is important to them. Unfortunately, some women find that sex can become painful after menopause.

Painful sex, also called dyspareunia, can result from vaginal changes, which can occur when a woman ‘s estrogen level decreases during menopause and her vaginal walls become thinner and less lubricated. Fifty-two percent of women from the same online sexual health survey said they avoided intercourse because of vaginal discomfort, and 68 percent said they attempted to hide their symptoms from their partner.

“I was upset about the pain I experienced during sex after I went through menopause,” said Charlotte. “Fortunately, I have a great relationship with my doctor and was able to discuss appropriate treatment options to help ease my symptoms.”

While Charlotte was quick to work with her physician, many women are reluctant to discuss the vaginal symptoms of menopause with their doctors. In fact, even though 63 percent of postmenopausal women in the same survey reported vaginal discomfort, only 40 percent discussed this discomfort or dryness with their health care professional. However, it’s important for women to know that their health care professional can address these symptoms by treating the underlying causes.

Recently, the FDA approved a low-dose regimen of PREMARIN® (conjugated estrogens) Vaginal Cream to treat moderate to severe postmenopausal dyspareunia. The first vaginal estrogen therapy approved by the FDA for this use, PREMARIN Vaginal Cream doesn’t mask symptoms. When used as prescribed, it can restore tissues in the vaginal wall and relieve dryness and painful intercourse.

“In my practice, I often see postmenopausal women who have vaginal dryness but don’t realize that it’s treatable,” says Dr. Gloria Bachmann,* director of the Women’s Health Institute and chief of OB/GYN at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, New Brunswick, N.J. “I encourage my patients to discuss their symptoms with me, so that together we can determine how to best address them because treatment options are available.”

PREMARIN Vaginal Cream can be prescribed in a variety of dosing regimens, including twice-weekly with a low volume of cream (0.5 g), which gives health care professionals flexibility in treating moderate to severe postmenopausal dyspareunia. Women should discuss their personal and family history, risks and benefits of treatment, and their current medications with their doctors.

For more information, including the full Patient Information and a $15 coupon, visit www.premarinvaginalcream.com.

Important Safety Information About PREMARIN Vaginal Cream:

What is the most important information you should know about PREMARIN Vaginal Cream (an estrogen mixture)? Estrogens may increase the chance of getting cancer of the uterus. Report any unusual vaginal bleeding right away while you are using PREMARIN Vaginal Cream. Vaginal bleeding after menopause may be a warning sign of cancer of the uterus (womb). Your health care professional should check any unusual vaginal bleeding to find out the cause.

Do not use estrogens with or without progestins to prevent heart disease, heart attacks, strokes, or dementia. Using estrogens, with or without progestins, may increase your chance of getting heart attacks, strokes, breast cancer, and blood clots. Using estrogens, with or without progestins, may increase your chance of getting dementia, based on a study of women age 65 years or older. You and your health care professional should talk regularly about whether you still need treatment with PREMARIN Vaginal Cream.

PREMARIN® Vaginal Cream is used after menopause to treat menopausal changes in and around the vagina and to treat painful intercourse caused by menopausal changes of the vagina.

PREMARIN Vaginal Cream should not be used if you have unusual vaginal bleeding, have or had cancer of the breast or uterus, had a stroke or heart attack, have or had blood clots or liver problems, are allergic to any of the ingredients in PREMARIN Vaginal Cream, or think you may be pregnant.

The most commonly reported side effects of PREMARIN Vaginal Cream include headache, infection, abdominal pain, back pain, accidental injury, and vaginitis.

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.fda.gov/medwatch, or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

*Disclosure: Dr. Bachmann is a consultant for Wyeth Pharmaceuticals, the maker of PREMARIN Vaginal Cream.

Learn the Correct Way To Control Carb Intake

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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – For Americans who want to control their carbs, learning how to consume “good” carbohydrates in balance with a variety of proteins and “good” fats can be confusing.

To help people understand the science underlying this nutritional approach, “Atkins for Life,” the book that set the gold standard for controlled-carbohydrate lifestyles, provides clear and complete explanations of how carbohydrates, protein and fat function in the body.

This resource, now available in paperback, contains an extensive meal-planning section with 125 recipes for everything from appetizers to desserts, snacks, entrees, soups, salads and sauces, along with 200 meal plans at various levels of carbohydrate intake.

Charts throughout the book provide information on “good” and “bad” carbs; the order in which carb foods should be added back into meals; the Atkins Glycemic Ranking (showing which carbs can be eaten regularly, which occasionally, and which rarely and in small amounts); and how to count carbs in individual foods. It also includes a restaurant guide to help Atkins enthusiasts choose the right foods when dining out.

The following recipe from the Atkins Kitchen takes a traditional dessert and adds a subtle and natural coconut flavor that really shines through in this slightly sweet ice cream. Pair it with sugar-free chocolate syrup mixed with a drizzle of rum for a tropical treat.

COCONUT ICE CREAM

(Makes 8 servings)

6 egg yolks

14 packets sugar substitute

2 cups heavy cream

1 (13.5-ounce) can unsweetened

coconut milk

2 teaspoons coconut extract

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup shredded unsweetened coconut, lightly toasted

In a medium bowl, whisk yolks and sugar substitute to combine. In a medium pot, bring heavy cream to a simmer over medium-low heat.

Slowly pour 1 cup cream into the yolk mixture, whisking constantly. Pour yolk mixture back into pot. Cook, stirring constantly, until mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Remove from heat. Stir in coconut milk, coconut and vanilla extracts. Chill 4 hours.

Pour ice cream mix into ice cream maker. Process according to manufacturer’s directions. About 5 minutes before ice cream is finished, add the toasted coconut.

Nutritional information per serving: 6 g carbohydrates, 4.5 g net carbohydrates, 1.5 g fiber, 4 g protein, 32 g fat, 326 calories.

Atkins offers a free newsletter with product updates, low-carb diet tips and recipes. For great recipes, look for “Dr. Atkins’ New Diet Revolution” (Harper Collins) and “Atkins for Life” (St. Martin’s Press). For more information, visit www.atkins.com.