Strawberry Sorbet and Mother’s Day

Strawberries are one of the first fruits to hit the stands when it warms up and heads into summer months.  Many states are already enjoying these magical tasting fruits and if you are having a family get together in Mom’s honor this weekend, you just might want to bring dessert. See our recipe, straight from the Walkingspree Food Tracker, below.

Strawberries aren’t just delicious. They also have health benefits similar to the benefits we get from walking. These yummy red berries help protect against heart disease, help regulate blood sugar and decrease risk of type 2 diabetes, plus reduce the risk of certain cancers such as breast, cervical, colon and esophageal.

So, it’s a heart-shaped gem and a powerhouse of nutrition. A cup of strawberries contains twice as much Vitamin C as an orange, almost 150 percent of the recommended daily requirement. They’re an excellent source of manganese for a healthy heart and bones, fiber to lower blood pressure, curb overeating, and they contain antioxidants known as polyphenols which reduce the risk of heart disease. They contain no sodium, fat or cholesterol and are low in calories – just 50 per cup (about 8 large strawberries.)

Strawberries are an easy way to keep your healthy eating commitment. Add them to your cereal in the morning, put them in a spinach salad at lunch, or enjoy a bowlful topped with a dollop of plain yogurt for dessert.

There is nothing in this world like a fresh picked strawberry. Make sure you search out this special summer treat. June is also National Strawberry Month so plan ahead and search out your favorite recipes.  And remember: if you are getting together for a family meal or Sunday afternoon lunch with the mothers in your life, the strawberry sorbet recipe below is sure to please.

Homemade Strawberry Sorbet

Ingredients:
· 3-3/4 cups strawberries, washed and hulled
· 1/2 cup sugar
· 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
· 2 tbsp lemon zest

Preparation:
1. Puree strawberries in a blender or food processor.
2. Blend in the remaining ingredients
3. Pour into a bowl or deep dish, cover, and freeze for at least 3 hours, or overnight.

Makes 8 servings.

Nutrition:
Calories: 77
Total Fat: 0.24g
Sat Fat: 0.013g
Cholesterol: 0mg
Sodium: 0.97mg
Total Carbs: 20g
Dietary Fiber: 1.8g
Sugar: 17g
Protein: 0.59g

Recipe Source: Walkingspree Food Tracker

Photo Source for Sorbet: thebittenword.com

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10 Tips for Walking or Running at Night

With summer approaching and daylight savings time also in effect, many of us will stay out later. We’ll exercise later in the day or schedule our walks for cooler hours. For those of in the more southern states, if we miss walking in the early morning hours, we end up needing to walk in the evening when it’s cooler just to avoid blazing hot temperatures after 8:00 am in the morning.

With these things in mind, we want to encourage you to enjoy the warmer, sun filled days and also give you a few practical, common sense tips to help you see and be seen while walking at night.

  1. Carry a flashlight to illuminate your path and help drivers see you. Consider clipping a “book” light or other small light on the back of your jacket.
  2. Walk in well lit areas and on routes you are familiar with. You need to know where the curbs and uneven surfaces are.
  3. Wear reflective material when walking at dusk or at night. Don’t rely on one strip of reflective tape on your leg or arm.
  4. Face oncoming traffic and stay on designated walkways and paths when possible. When a car approaches, move out of the way.
  5. Always assume drivers will not see you, especially when crossing a street. Make eye contact with drivers to make sure they see you.
  6. Use popular walking routes. Drivers in that area may already be on the lookout for pedestrians. But again, don’t assume that every driver is familiar with the area.  Share your walking route and what time you expect to return with someone you trust.
  7. Be aware of engine noises and backup lights, cars backing out of driveway and parking lots.
  8. Don’t use headphones or talk on the phone. Don’t get distracted.
  9. Walk with a buddy or take Fido with you. There is safety in numbers and company can make the time pass.
  10. Wear a whistle or carry a small alarm to attract attention if you need help.
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Less Junk Food = More Sleep

Here’s a tip to help you keep junk food out of your diet – get more sleep.

Here’s why.

During a period of sleep restriction, the activity in the brain’s pleasure seeking center increases at the sight of unhealthy foods – like pizza, cheeseburger and cake. But after a full night’s sleep the brain’s reaction to unhealthy and healthy food is about the same.

The results are from a study conducted at Columbia University and St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital Center in New York which involved 25 normal weight participants who were restricted to four hours of sleep or allowed a full night’s sleep for five nights.

Researchers then compared functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) that were taken when the subjects looked at images of healthy and unhealthy foods.

The sleep deprived fMRIs showed a more heightened reaction in the brain’s reward centers for the unhealthy foods compared to healthy foods.

“The results suggest that, under restricted sleep, individuals will find unhealthy foods highly salient and rewarding, which may lead to greater consumption of those foods,” said Marie-Pierre St-Onge, PhD, the study’s lead researcher.

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Less Junk Food = More Sleep

Here’s a tip to help you keep junk food out of your diet – get more sleep.

Here’s why.

During a period of sleep restriction, the activity in the brain’s pleasure seeking center increases at the sight of unhealthy foods – like pizza, cheeseburger and cake. But after a full night’s sleep the brain’s reaction to unhealthy and healthy food is about the same.

The results are from a study conducted at Columbia University and St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital Center in New York which involved 25 normal weight participants who were restricted to four hours of sleep or allowed a full night’s sleep for five nights.

Researchers then compared functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) that were taken when the subjects looked at images of healthy and unhealthy foods.

The sleep deprived fMRIs showed a more heightened reaction in the brain’s reward centers for the unhealthy foods compared to healthy foods.

“The results suggest that, under restricted sleep, individuals will find unhealthy foods highly salient and rewarding, which may lead to greater consumption of those foods,” said Marie-Pierre St-Onge, PhD, the study’s lead researcher.

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The Link Between Exercise and Happiness

This week’s “MOVE” post is dedicated to not only inspiring you to move more but also to encourage you to experience more happiness.  Happify.com is a website dedicated to using “cutting-edge science and innovative technology to empower individuals to lead happier, more fulfilling lives.”  The folks over at Happify take a 21st-century approach to building a well-lived life. They also remind us that happiness is a skill that can be strengthened. The site focuses on making scientific discoveries (that help you be happier) more available to you – and in ways that you can interact with. Their website states that  “In a world that’s increasingly stressful and complex, we want to provide fun, individualized, and science-based pathways to greater happiness. Above all, we’re here to empower you to take control of your emotional life—and we’re giving you the tools to do it.”

We found this cool infographic that tells you all about the ways that exercise can make you happier. Check it out, print it out and post it on your ‘fridge for inspiration.

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