benefits of healthy eating

4 Tips to Beat the Summer Heat

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Senior relaxing at the seaside summer holidays concept

Who doesn’t look forward to taking in the warm, summer sun? You spend months going through the cooler winter temps only to be scorched by the sun during those three prime months of summer. Regardless of how old you are, you need to exercise caution when it comes to being out in the heat. Too much heat is a bad thing. To help you stay cool during the extreme temperatures, follow these simple tips:

Turn the lights off in rooms you aren’t using.

While you might not realize it, lights actually produce a significant amount of heat. Have you ever tried to touch a lightbulb after having it on for a little while? That is a surefire way to get yourself burned. The best thing you can do is to leave the lights off when a room isn’t in use.

Drink ample amounts of water.

The warmer the temperature is outside, the more water you need to drink. If you skip out on the fluids, you will find yourself dehydrated and in the hospital. Your body is composed mainly of water, so it makes sense that you need to put water back into it to make sure you stay healthy all year round. Aim for at least eight cups of water per day, if not more.

Dress based on the weather.

If the weather is going to be 90 degrees outside, one should dress accordingly, wear light fabrics that are breathable and in cool colors. When in doubt, pay attention to what the weather forecast says and plan your wardrobe accordingly. It doesn’t make sense to overheat yourself due to clothing attire that isn’t weather appropriate.

Block the heat.

If the weather outside is extremely warm, keep your windows, doors, blinds and curtains closed to prevent the heat from entering your home. Keeping the area shaded will help to maintain the cooler temperature inside of your environment. Once it cools down outside, you can open everything up and let the nice breeze make its way through your space.

Would you like a little extra help taking care of your loved one this summer and making sure they stay nice and cool? Thanks to MD Home Health/Home Assist, you can put your worries behind you and rest assured that there is someone who is going to be there when you need them the most. Phoenix home health care has never been as convenient and rewarding as it is now.


8 Simple Ways to Stay Healthy Through the Holiday Season

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8 Simple Ways to Stay Healthy Through the Holiday Season

It can be difficult to stay healthy during the holidays with the plethora of treats, parties, stress and emotional triggers the season brings. Not to fret! We’ve developed 8 simple ways to boost spirits and keep our health in check this year.

Carry Plenty of Snacks

As the holidays near, we’re bombarded with festive temptations wherever we turn. From treats offered by family and friends to parties and social gatherings, food often becomes a focal point of celebration. Having healthy and ready-to eat-snacks—such as raw veggies, fruit and nuts—are great ways to be prepared for the urge to indulge.

Eat Several Meals

One of the most effectives ways of combating these temptations is by eating six small meals throughout the day, rather than skipping meals to save up for one big feast. In order to keep our metabolic rates high and curb our sugar and fat cravings, it’s best to eat several small meals or snacks throughout the day.

Indulge in Only Special Treats

If you have a certain holiday treat you look forward to every year, don’t skip it! Simply hold off on most of the other goodies. Indulging in only select specialties gives you a taste of the holidays without the risk of triggering a chocolate binge from trying to abstain.

Stay Active

It’s always best to maintain an active lifestyle, and this is especially important during the holidays.

Staying active and getting at least 30 minutes of exercise per day is the best way to beat holiday blues and weight gain. It can even lower symptoms of depression, anxiety and stress.

Go Easy on Liquid Calories

It’s easy to pack on extra pounds due to holiday beverages like eggnog, sugary juices, alcohol and sodas. Not only can alcohol pack a ton of calories, but it also affects the way calories are burned off when ingested. Consider having just one glass of wine or bubbly, rather than overdoing it, and try the same approach with eggnog and juices. You’ll thank yourself for it a few hours later.

Eat Before the Party

If you’re planning on attending a party where there will be plenty of indulgent temptations, try eating before the party. If you fill up on a healthy meal before the festivities, you’ll be less likely to overindulge on the party favors.

Take the Focus off Food

So much of the holidays revolve around food, yet there are so many other traditions that we can focus on. Taking some time to focus on other aspects of the holidays can help curb overeating due to boredom and displaced energy.

Try putting your time and efforts into decorating, making homemade gifts, singing carols, or charity work for those less fortunate. You could even start a holiday project to keep your mind focused and occupied.

Help Others

People sometimes struggle through the holidays, be it financially, emotionally or both. Helping out friends who may be having a difficult time is always beneficial to not only the friend, but your overall happiness and stress levels.

Donating is another way to lend a helping hand. A study was conducted where people were given $100 with the option of donating or keeping it. Results showed that those who kept the money had higher levels of stress and cortisol. Those who donated the money were ultimately happier, as it activated the reward center of the brain.


September is National Apple Month

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September is National Apple Day Month

MD Home Health, a Phoenix Home Health Care provider, is excited to celebrate National Apple Day Month with all our friends and family. Did you know that our nation has been celebrating the glory of apples since 1904? And did you know that National Apple Day Month actually starts in September and continues through November? To help you to enjoy this three-month celebration to its fullest, we decided to share a few fun but practical facts about apples so you can understand why every home care in Phoenix should include this delicious fruit in their diet!

An Apple A Day Keeps the Doctor Away: Fact or Myth?

It’s that time of year to celebrate your juicy, round friend. As a timeless favorite for fruit, snack, dessert, and cider making, the yummy apples you see in the market every day dominate the hearts of every culture with its thin red or green skin, sweet aroma, and crisp flesh. However besides tasting good and looking good, apples are loved for their delicious taste and nutritious value.In fact, apples are extremely rich in dietary fiber and flavanoids. The phytonutrients (vitamins A and E and beta carotene) in apples can help you regulate your blood sugar, while the antioxidants in apples have been found to reduce the risk of many common ailments such as cancer and diabetes. According to a recent study led by Bahram H. Arjmandi, PhD, RD, Margaret A. Sitton Professor and Chair, Department of Nutrition, Food and Exercise Sciences at The Florida State University in Tallahassee, eating apples regularly will keep your body healthy and your doctors far away! The Office of Child Development also confirms that the complex carbohydrates in apples will help the body to sustain and improve its energy level so that you can tackle your daily routines with better productivity, performance, and attitude. Additionally, because apples are absolutely fat-free, its fiber and rich boron will not only encourage bowel movement but also help prevent osteoporosis.

Interesting Nutrition Facts of Apple

When people think about the nutritious makeup of apples, carbohydrates and vitamin C are among the commonly named. But apples also contain pectin, boron, quercetin, and phytonutrients. Pectin is known for lowering both blood pressure and glucose level. As a form of soluble fiber, pectin can effectively lower your “bad” cholesterol level to improve your overall circulation and body metabolism. Quercetin, on the other hand, promises to reduc the free radical damage. As University of Maryland Medical Center explains, “Quercetin belongs to a group of plant pigments called flavonoids that give many fruits, flowers, and vegetables their color…Quercetin acts like an antihistamine and an anti-inflammatory, and may help protect against heart disease and cancer…”

Eat Your Apples and Live Healthier

Apple is definitely a superfruit for everyone! When you eat an apple, try to leave the peels on. Apple peels have been known to be packed with rich vitamins, minerals, and fiber. As for pesticide residues, Dr. Dianne Hyson from U.C. Davis explains that, “Despite public misperceptions, laboratories have consistently found very low levels — if any — of pesticide residues on the skin of apples.”

So enjoy your apples and experiment with a variety of apple types and recipes to give your body and taste buds some generous treats!

To learn more about improving your diet with apples and other nutritious fruits and vegetables, visit MD Home Health. We will help you to discover a savoring and healthy eating routine!


Good vs. Bad Vegetables

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Whether you’re in the Phoenix Home Health Care system or simply concerned about what you put in your body, not all vegetables are created equal. Some should be eaten every day and others are just bad vegetables, in comparison.

Fresh farmers market fruit and vegetable from above with copy sp

Veggies: The Good, the Bad, the Fattening

According to Dr. Mercola, some vegetables offer better nutritional return than others. Broccoli, asparagus, kale, onions, collard greens, tomatoes, and fennel are just a few vegetables that come highly recommended. Spinach, essentially a superstar of the nutrition world, does as well.

The vegetables that should be used more sparingly include beets, carrots, eggplant, and winter squashes. This is because of their high carbohydrate levels. Likewise, potatoes should be used on occasion rather than as a staple of your food pyramid. Potatoes are very starchy and can cause weight gain (which causes a whole slug of other issues) if ingested too regularly.

The Game Changers

Most people who think of veggies are undoubtedly transported back to childhood, recalling memories of hiding lima beans in paper napkins and feeding peas to the dog. However, vegetables don’t have to taste bad. In fact, two vegetables can be enjoyed quite easily: one is highly tasty and the other doesn’t have much taste at all.

Avocadoes, though technically a fruit, are widely regarded as a vegetable. The main ingredient in guacamole, they aren’t only good for taste buds, but they’re good for your body as well.

Per the Cancer Treatment Centers of America, avocadoes are rich in oleic acid, a type of monounsaturated fat that can help lower bad, LDL cholesterol and raise good, HDL cholesterol. Avocadoes can also offer protection against breast cancer, stroke, and heart disease.

Mushrooms are game changers not because they are as tasty as avocadoes but because their subtle flavor enables them to be added to all sorts of dishes – salads, pizza, spaghetti, rice, and macaroni, just to name a few.

Adding mushrooms to your meals can also add protein, fiber, vitamin C, vitamin B, antioxidants, and minerals to your body.

Organic Vs. Nonorganic

Once upon a time, organic vegetables were only found in the aisles of health stores and farmers’ markets; today, they’re everywhere. This largely has to do with pesticides.

Organic vegetables are grown in environments where pesticides aren’t used; nonorganic vegetables are grown in environments where pesticides are used.

According to the Pesticide Action Network, pesticides may be dangerous to human health: the pesticide chlorpyrifos has been linked to ADHD while the pesticide DDT increases a woman’s risk of developing breast cancer by as much as five-fold.

Still, whether there is true need for panic has yet to be established. This is because while pesticides have been linked to cancer, their correlation is usually only found in farmers and other people routinely exposed to very large amounts as an occupational hazard. The amounts on food are much lower and, therefore, likely much less dangerous. In fact, per the Cancer Research Foundation of the United Kingdom, no link has been found between the trace amounts of pesticides found on vegetables and cancer formation.

Even so, for people who want to err on the side of caution, organic vegetables should be purchased if possible. If you can’t afford or do not have access to organic produce, the benefits of eating nonorganic vegetables will likely far outweigh any theoretical risks. Yet, just to be safe, all vegetables should be thoroughly washed before consumption. This is especially important for people in homecare, Phoenix based or otherwise.

For more information on home care, Phoenix health, and how nutrition impacts your wellbeing, visit us at MD Home Health. Remember, it’s never too late to start eating your veggies.


Are You Cooking with Healthy Oils

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olive oil

Cooking with the Healthy Oils

As we age, more and more attention goes into making sure we are taking better care of our bodies. From diet to exercise, there are a plethora of ways in which we can make small changes toward a happier, healthier, body-mind-soul. One of the ways in which we might not think our health is being negatively affected is through the oils we use to cook. Often times throughout history, health studies and ideas have changed regarding healthy oils to cook with. With some up to date expert knowledge about cooking with oils, greater insight can be gained into your health; furthering down the path toward a happier, healthier you.

 The Facts

When cooking with oils, it is not only important to pick an oil that his healthy for you, but also an oil that will remain healthy once you cook it. The heating of oils can often times change their chemical makeup, releasing harmful toxins and carcinogens into your food and body. It is best to avoid polyunsaturated fats due to this, as they break up easily under heat. It is best to choose oils with a high level of stability under high heat, according to nutrition experts. This will prevent the oils from oxidizing, a process that releases the harmful free radicals aforementioned. It is also best to choose cooking oils and/or fats that are low in saturated fats, as these can raise the risk for high cholesterol and heart disease.

 What to Avoid

Now that it is known to avoid polyunsaturated oils, one may be wondering what those are. Common polyunsaturated oils include safflower oil, sunflower and sesame seed oil, corn and soy based oils, fish oil, flaxseed oil, as well as several other nut oils. Monounsaturated fats hold up better under heat and include olive, canola, peanut and avocado oils. The monounsaturated fats aren’t the greatest for you when cooking if using them all of the time, however they are certainly a lesser of the two evils. Other oils to avoid include cottonseed oil, grapeseed, and rice bran oil, as well as canola or rapeseed oils. While they do not all low heat indexes, some are highly processed, and to be avoided. Butter substitutes such as margarine and Crisco are also harmful to one’s health, as they contain hydrogenated oils which have been linked with higher cholesterol and even diabetes.

coconut oils

Oils Great for Cooking

Experts have concluded that substituting polyunsaturated and saturated fats in one’s diet with monounsaturated fats works well at lowering cholesterol. This is particularly important as we age. Because of this factor, as well as its incredibly high heat tolerance, coconut oil is the number one best oil to use in the kitchen. If one is to cook with olive oil, peanut oil, macadamia nut oil or avocado oil, it should be done at a lower heat so as to avoid free radicals. Other substances that are OK to cook with sparingly include butter and lard, however, they are high in saturated fats and not recommended as a healthy part of a diet if one is battling high cholesterol or heart disease.

When in doubt about the healthiest oil to cook with, it is best to simply gravitate toward the coconut oil, and use other monounsaturated fat based oils sparingly at low heat. If there is that special occasion where nothing but butter will do, go for the real thing rather than the margarine, as using a hydrogenated oil would be worse. Lard can be similar to butter with a low amount of polyunsaturated fats and high monounsaturated fats depending on the diet of the animal. Those fed grains will have a higher polyunsaturated fat makeup, while a grass-fed diet will yield high monounsaturated fats within the lard. One should note that it is best to consult a physician before applying and changes to your diet that you are unsure about.

For more great tips on healthy living, visit us at MD Home Health. Until then, start cooking your way into better health. 


In the Mood for Healthy Food

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Healthy Food for a Healthy Mood

mood healthy eating, mood food healthy foodEating healthy is not always easy. Constant temptations for inexpensive, convenient fast food make it difficult to make the right food choices when it comes to your health. Luckily, we’re here to help make it easier, because you don’t have to be a celebrity health nut or experienced chef to start choosing the best foods for your body. 

Your path toward healthier eating starts with leafy greens. The problem that people often run into with vegetables, however, is not so much the flavor but the difficulty that comes along with trying to cook them. For busy people on the go, leafy greens are easy to leave out. An effortless way to incorporate darker greens into your diet more is to start using them in your sandwiches instead of iceberg lettuce. Many of these darker greens have antioxidants like lutein and zeaxanthin, which are associated with eye health, in addition to vitamin K, which is good for bone growth and warding off cancer.

Though whole milk may provide you with your necessary intake of vitamin D and calcium for your bones, it also contains an unhealthy amount of fat, and is therefore probably not your healthiest choice. Other dairy products like yogurt have less fat and can provide you with these essential bone-fortifying nutrients while protecting your gums against disease and helping with your digestion. For a healthy breakfast that can easily replace a quick bowl of sugary cereal, consider adding flaxseeds and granola to your yogurt to get both heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids and fiber.

Fish like salmon and trout will also give you a healthy dose of omega-3s that will offer the added benefit of improved brain health. Though fish might seem like a hassle to prepare at first, grilling it with a few herbs and spices should take no more than ten to fifteen minutes. Plus, its versatility gives you a range of options when considering what to do with your leftovers. You can have a classic grilled salmon dinner or a delicious grilled salmon sandwich for lunch (don’t forget your leafy greens!). For an extra healthy treat, try substituting a high-fat, high-sugar dessert with fruits that are just as sweet but also rich in vitamin C. Following some of these simple tips from the experts at MD Home Health will put you on the path to a healthier you.


Healthy Eating and Longevity

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The Benefits of Healthy Eating and Longevity

Health and Longevity

Eating healthy has many benefits, including adding to your longevity.

Healthy eating and longevity go hand in hand. Your body is a high performance piece of machinery.The food you ingest is your fuel, and like all high performance machines you want to supply your body with foods that promote a long and healthy life, the best fuel possible, to increase longevity and performance. I will be giving you tips on longevity eating; these tips, if followed, will have you feeling and looking your best.

First on the list for foods that promote a long and healthy life is wheatgrass. Wheatgrass is a great food to ingest to help your performance and longevity. Wheatgrass is 70% chlorophyll, which is the first product of light and contains a substantial amount of energy. Wheatgrass also contains a lot of oxygen, which helps improve brain and tissue functions. In addition the wheatgrass shot can improve blood sugar problems, washes drug deposits out of the body, is great for your skin such as acne and even scars/scar tissue. Taking a one or two ounce shot once a day, over time, will do great things for your body.

Next in the foods that promote a long and healthy life is bee pollen. Bee pollen is a great food to improve your health and the longevity of your life. You can have it blended into green smoothies, or sprinkled on top of your acai or pitaya (we will get to those in a minute.) Bee pollen is richer in protein than any animal source. It contains more protein than beef, cheese, or eggs in equal weight. It provides energy, aides in allergy issues, soothes irritated or inflames skin, can improve respiratory issues, and really boosts the health of your digestive system.

The most tasty, and easy way to get bee pollen in your diet is an acai or pitaya bowl. Acai and pitaya’s are super fruits. They are high in fiber- which is amazing for your digestive system, have key vitamins and nutrients the body needs, as well as antioxidants to help your immune system fight cancer. While there is so many great food and tips for improving your longevity health- these few tips are really some of the best out there. Improving your brain and tissue function, skin, respiratory system, helps with allergies, and gives you key nutrients to fight cancer and keep a healthy digestive tract are all things your body- as a high performance machine- needs and deserves.

While the effects of eating these snacks and pick me ups wont instantaneously cause you to start glowing or improve your IQ, if practiced over time and made into a life style there is no doubt you will see the results. Looking and feeling your best is something MD Home Health wants for you, why not start now!