Health Blog

International Eat An Apple Day – 21st September 2019

Eat An Apple Day

International Eat an Apple Day falls onto every third Saturday of September on the calendar where everyone is encouraged to enjoy a fresh and nutritious apple. An apple will never be enough, eat as many apples as you like on this day! Apples were first grown in Asia, until today there are a lot of varieties of apples around the world such as Gala, Pink Lady, Fuji and Granny Smith. Which varieties of apple are in your favourite list?

 

Nevertheless which are your favourite kind of apples, apple still brings a lot of advantages to your health. Below are some health benefits of an apple:

·         Prevention of obesity: As apple consists of a great amount of water and fibre, which assists in reducing weight and prevent obesity.

·         Lowering risk of diabetes & stroke: Antioxidants in Apples are associated with lowering the risk of diabetes and stroke.

·         Prevention of dementia: High amount of Vitamin C in apple helps decrease the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.

·         Reducing bad cholesterol level: High amount of fibre in apple are linked to reducing bad cholesterol level and improving good cholesterol level.

 

With all the benefits to your health by eating an apple, you should not only have an apple on this International Eat an Apple Day but to have an apple every day – which might keep you away from the doctor!

 

Reference: National Day Calendar. (2019). INTERNATIONAL EAT AN APPLE DAY – Third Saturday in September – National Day Calendar. [online] Available at: https://nationaldaycalendar.com/international-eat-an-apple-day-third-saturday-in-september/
Medical News Today. (2019). Apples: Health benefits, facts, research. [online] Available at: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/267290.php

Superfood Snack – Acai Bowl Recipe

Enjoy this nutritious and antioxidant bowl simply at home with this recipe!

Acai BowlServe 2

 

Ingredients

Acai smoothie base:

  • 100g frozen acai berry
  • 1/2 cup  Apple juice
  • 1 small frozen banana
  • 1/2 cup  frozen strawberries
  • 1/2 cup  frozen blueberries

 

Toppings:

(Below are suggested toppings for one Acai bowl. Feel free to add any of  your favourite toppings and add to your desired quantity.)

  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1/2 Cup Homemade granola
  • Fresh fruit sliced thinly: such as fresh strawberries, raspberries and banana
  • 1 tablespoon coconut flakes
  • 1 tablespoon yukiko
Instructions
  1. Add the frozen acai berry, apple juice, banana, strawberries, and blueberries to a high powered blender. Blend until smooth. Pour into a bowl.
  2. Decorate the bowl with all your favourite toppings and enjoy immediately!

Weight management through healthy eating habits

1 in 3 Singaporean adults is facing an obese or overweight problem. Overweight or obesity will higher your chances of developing cancers, cardiovascular disease, hypertension and diabetes. By picking up healthy eating habits will result in a positive impact on your weight management.

Healthy eating habits to eat right and lite

i. Healthier beverage choices

Always put plain water as your first choice to keep your body hydrated. Most of the beverages, alcohol and even fruit juices contribute high-calorie count in your diet.

ii. Eat more fibre

Fibre does not digest in your body, it will swell and take in water which makes you feel fuller for longer. Choose fibre-rich food such as beans, vegetables, lentils and whole-grains which will contribute low-calorie count in your diet.

iii. Eat regularly between meals

Prevent delaying or skipping your main meal, sufficient-spaced between meals would provide energy for you throughout the day and avoid hunger pangs.

iv. Eat smaller portion

Reduce the regular portion of your snack and meal will immediately lower your calories intake.

v. Decrease fat intake in your diet

Fat contributes a high amount of calorie, reduce fat intake in your diet is an effective way to lower your calorie intake. Avoid choosing deep-fried and oily food which are high in calorie.

vi. Decrease sugar intake in your diet

Sugar have low nutrients value but do contribute to your calorie count intake. Restrict cakes, ice-cream and desserts that consist high amount of added sugars.

By doing all these simple yet healthy eating habits every day, your extra weight reduces slowly but surely.

Reference:
Healthhub.sg. (2019). [online] Available at: https://www.healthhub.sg/live-healthy/457/Eating%20to%20Lose%20Weight [Accessed 6 Sep. 2019].

How does protein intake affect weight management?

Foods with high protein can actually cause your body to feel fuller than carbohydrate-rich or fat-rich foods. By adding protein intake from lean foods in your diet will minimize the sensation of hunger and therefore lower your overall calorie intake.

In order to lose your weight by lower down your calorie intake, it is a must to lower the intake of certain foods. However, to keep protein-rich foods with low-fat intake will be a great idea. As a result, a large contribution of calorie will be from protein in this low energy intake diet. Based on the results demonstrated by several studies, a diet with high protein and low carbohydrate were linked with the slightly better initial loss of weight than popular low-fat diet plans.

Choosing protein-rich foods with lower fat like low-fat dairy products or lean meats are very important because certain protein-rich foods contain high amount of saturated fat. With this simple step, it will help decrease the possibility of developing the heart-related disease.

Reference: British Nutrition Foundation. (2019). Protein. [online] Available at: https://www.nutrition.org.uk/nutritionscience/nutrients-food-and-ingredients/protein.html?start=5 [Accessed 30 Aug. 2019].

Chicken Spinach Salad with Pomegranate

Nutritious lunch ideas with only 20 minutes preparation times!

Serves 2
INGREDIENTS

For chicken:

· 2 Chicken breasts

· A pinch of salt

· A pinch of pepper

· 2 tsp olive oil

For salad:

· A pinch of salt

· A pinch of pepper

· 1 Tbsp olive oil

· 1 Tbsp lemon juice

· 4 cups spinach

· ½ cup pomegranate

Preparation

For chicken:

1. Pre-heat pan with medium heat.

2. Add olive oil.

3. Coat chicken breast with salt and pepper

4. Cook chicken breast for 10-15minutes, until the chicken no longer pink.

5. Cut into strips after cool for 5 minutes.

For salad:

1. Mix spinach, chicken and pomegranate into a salad bowl.

2. Add olive oil and lemon juice.

3. Sprinkle salt and pepper. Ready to serve!

Introduction to Minerals

Aside from vitamins, minerals are also micronutrients that are important for your body growth and to maintain your healthiness. Your body takes in minerals better through direct food intakes rather than in the form of supplements. Nearly all people do not demonstrate any symptoms of minerals inadequacy. However, this does not indicate your body are adequate of nutrients or minerals intakes. Your body needs different quantities of intake of each mineral as different mineral carry out different role. Physiological status, gender and age will affect the requirement of an individual for minerals intake. Excessive intake of minerals will lead to toxicity in your body. There are two common categories of minerals: macrominerals and trace minerals.

Macrominerals

Macrominerals are minerals that require a high amount of intakes (from 100 mg to one gram) than other minerals. Magnesium, potassium, calcium, chloride, sodium and phosphorus are classified as macrominerals. Macrominerals like calcium are important for maintaining the strength of bone and development of bone.

Trace Minerals

Trace minerals are other minerals that your body needed in lesser amounts. Even though your body needs smaller quantities of trace minerals, trace minerals still play a crucial role in maintaining your body’s health. Copper, fluoride, iodine, selenium and zinc are categorized under trace minerals.

Reference: Nutrition in the News Facts behind the headlines Previous Facts behind the headlines BNF Consultation responses New reports Previous reports Diet, n., Diet, n., Ba, N., Nutrition Science Webinars Nutrients, s., Nutrients, F., Healthy, s. and events, C. (2019). Minerals and trace elements – British Nutrition Foundation – Page #1. [online] Nutrition.org.uk. Available at: https://www.nutrition.org.uk/nutritionscience/nutrients-food-and-ingredients/minerals-and-trace-elements.html?limit=1&start=1 [Accessed 16 Aug. 2019].

What are Vitamins?

Vitamins are micronutrients that are needed for your body to function correctly, thus your body can manage normal growth and maintenance of its metabolism. Your body requires 13 types of vitamins which your body cannot produce it, so your body can only gain these vitamins through fruits, vegetables and various foodstuffs. There are two different groups of Vitamins: water-soluble and fat-soluble.

Fat-soluble Vitamins

Fat-soluble vitamins will break down by lipid or fat and take in by blood to your intestinal tract. An excessive amount of fat-soluble vitamins will be kept in your liver and fatty tissues for further usage when your body requires. Fat-soluble vitamins are able to remain in your body from several days up to several months. Therefore, your body does not require a daily intake of these vitamins or else it will lead to toxicity. Example of fat-soluble vitamins are Vitamins A, D, E and K.

Water-soluble Vitamins

Unlike fat-soluble vitamins, water-soluble vitamins will not be able to keep in your body as these vitamins all dissolve in water and dispose of out of your body through urine. Hence, your body require daily intake of these vitamins. Example of water-soluble vitamins are B-complex Vitamins (vitamin B2, B3, B6, B12, folate, biotin and pantothenic acid) and vitamin C.

Stay tuned for more update for your vitamins blog-tablet!

Reference:
Extension. (2019). Fat-Soluble Vitamins: A, D, E, and K – 9.315 – Extension. [online] Available at: https://extension.colostate.edu/topic-areas/nutrition-food-safety-health/fat-soluble-vitamins-a-d-e-and-k-9-315/ [Accessed 8 Aug. 2019].
Extension. (2019). Water-Soluble Vitamins: B-Complex and Vitamin C – 9.312 – Extension. [online] Available at: https://extension.colostate.edu/topic-areas/nutrition-food-safety-health/water-soluble-vitamins-b-complex-and-vitamin-c-9-312/ [Accessed 8 Aug. 2019].

Happy Watermelon Day! 3 August 2019

Happy Watermelon Day! Who doesn’t love watermelon? Especially with the hot weather in Singapore, there are many different ways to enjoy this lovely fruit and watermelon definitely helps in refreshing and cooling down our body with juicy sensations. August 3 is the National Watermelon Day in the States, unquestionably this beauty deserves a celebration for its own, yay?

Watermelons: Interesting facts about this beauty
  • 92% of Watermelon is made up of water.

  • Watermelons were used as drinking bottles by the early adventurer.

  • In 1615, “watermelon” word was added in the English dictionary for its first entrance.

  • From planting to harvesting, watermelon needs around 80-90 days to mature.

  • Do you know that the heaviest watermelon in the world weighed 159 kg? It was grown at Sevierville in 2013 by Chris Kent.

  • In the South and North of the United States, there are over 300 types of watermelon being grown. Yellow, seeded, mini and seedless types of watermelon are grown most frequently.

Why do the Americas celebrate Watermelon Day?

The Cancer fighter: Watermelon provides Lycopene & Carotenoid which are known as antioxidants that helps in lower the risk of certain types of cancer.

Very flexible fruit: From flesh to seeds, every part of watermelon are safe to eat. You can enjoy the fruit in any ways with your own preference, for examples: juices, smoothie or ice-cream. Thus, this makes watermelon as a wonderful celebration item. Pickled and fried watermelon flesh is very common in numerous parts around the globe. In a few parts of China, they dry and roast watermelon seeds which make it edible just like nuts.

Excellent summer food: As has been mentioned above, 92% of watermelon is water. Which in a way, eating watermelon will helps your body to keep hydrated during dry season weather.

Enjoy it guiltless! : Watermelon is a mixture of fibre and water which contribute low calories. So, let’s celebrate Watermelon Day on 3 August by having it unlimited volumes without any guilt! Remember to invite your friends including those that are on a diet to have fun together by enjoying watermelon in lots of different ways.

Reference: Day Finders. (2019). Is today National Watermelon Day?. [online] Available at: https://dayfinders.com/watermelon-day/ [Accessed 2 Aug. 2019].

Sliced Fish Noodle Soup

Treat yourself with this nourishing dish that combines succulent fish in sweet rice vermicelli soup!

Serves 4

INGREDIENTS

•200 g brown rice bee hoon, soaked and drained

• 200 g toman fillet, sliced and blanched

• 2 tomatoes, cut into wedges

• 5 g ginger, sliced

• 2 spring onions, sliced

• 5 tsp concentrated chicken stock

• 6 tbsp low-fat evaporated milk

• 1 tsp sesame oil

• 1 tbsp corn oil

• 1-litre hot water

• Salt and pepper to taste

PREPARATION

1. Heat corn oil in a wok.

2. Stir-fry sliced ginger till fragrant.

3. Pour in hot water.

4. Add in concentrated chicken stock and boil for 2 minutes.

5. Add bee hoon, toman fillet slices, tomato wedges, spring onion, sesame oil and low-fat evaporated milk. Cook for 2 minutes.

6. Add salt and pepper to taste before serving.

Happy Cherry Day – 16 July 2019

Do you know?

National Cherry Day was established as a day to raise awareness of Britain’s cherries. During the 20th century, Britain lost the majority of its cherry orchards in war.

Nutritional Value of Cherry

Cherries have low caloric content and are a nutrient-dense food – vitamin C, potassium, fibre and polyphenols. Cherries have anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, which reduces the risk of the development and progression of common chronic inflammatory diseases.

Reference: Kelley, D., Adkins, Y. and Laugero, K. (2018). A Review of the Health Benefits of Cherries. Nutrients, 10(3), p.368.