Saturday, 14 April 2012

How to Incorporate Spinach Into Your Healthy Breakfast - Health

They celebrated my son's birthday today at his school, Cushman, here in Miami. He's going to be 5 this Sunday.

We're going back to his school a little later today to have a birthday party with all his schoolmates in his classroom.

The big dilemma is always what kinds of foods to bring for the kids. You see, my son has been brought up on only natural foods since he was born. He doesn't eat anything that comes from a package (unless it's a fresh frozen veggie or fruit). This means he's never had chips from a bag, chocolate, ice cream (in the traditional sense - we make our own healthy version... it's so easy -- I'll give you a recipe for it in a second), no soda, no fruit juices, no cookies, no pizza, no chocolate cake. Yet kids his age eat these "unnatural" things almost every day.

Before you think I'm a little extreme by "depriving" my son of these "goodies", let me give you a bit of a wake up call my dear parent (first, understand that parents saying they don't want to "deprive" their children of these treats is a huge cop-out - more later).

Type 2 diabetes, also know as "adult-onset" diabetes, is now a growing epidemic amongst children. Children as young as 2 years old (!!) are being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes.

What the hey?!?

Let's get this clear right off the bat. TYPE 2 DIABETES IS N-O-T A DISEASE. It is caused from "faulty eating habits" that have overtaxed the bodies ability to handle "ingested sugars" from foodstuffs.

Here's the insidious problem with the "typical" foods we eat today. Your body interprets processed foods as simply... sugar... even though there may be no added sugar on the label.

How is this so?

Modern processing of food renders it "too easy to digest".

"What's wrong with this?", you may ask.

Here's what's wrong with it.

Your digestive system has been designed to process and digest foods that have lots of fiber in them. This releases a "trickle" of the digested "high-fiber" foods into our system as glycogen (sugar). Most of the foods found naturally in nature are low in sugar anyway. So, the length of time it takes to digest, plus the low amounts of naturally occurring sugar in these "natural" foods allows your pancreas (which releases insulin to help "shuttle" these sugars to the cells that need them) to do its job easily.

The problem arises when we eat processed foods that have been stripped of fiber, or contain added sugars. This releases a large amount of sugar into your bloodstream all at once, overwhelming your pancreas, which now has to release massive amounts of insulin to "process" all these sugars. Since there is too much sugar in the bloodstream all at once, the insulin carries it to your fat cells, which store this sugar as fat.

This is one of the main ways we get fat.

Over time, the "insulin factory" (pancreas) gets tired and weak from processing all this sugar and can produce less insulin and even shut down completely. And, since the cells of our body become damaged when sugar levels remain high, they close their "doors" and do not allow this sugar to come in (insulin-resistance). This now becomes type 2 diabetes.

One significant study of adolescents in a large Midwestern city found that the rate of type 2 diabetes increased 10-fold from 1982 to 1994, representing 33% of all adolescent cases of diabetes. Nationally, it is estimated that 29% of adolescent patients with diabetes have type 2 diabetes, resulting in an estimated 2.8 million adolescents in the U.S. with prediabetes or type 2 diabetes.

Given the rise of childhood obesity, it is estimated that more than one third of all children who were born in 2000 will eventually develop diabetes, either during childhood or after adolescence.

Remember, this was a previously unheard-of disease in children (hence the name "adult-onset" diabetes).

Some ethnic groups are more prone to diabetes. For example, 50% of Hispanics in the U.S. are projected to develop childhood or adult diabetes. This rise in diabetes also leads to a reduction in projected lifespan -- as much as 22 years for some individuals.

Have I scared you yet? You better get scared because simply eating the wrong foods not only causes a tremendous burden on our medical care system, but it also kills those people suffering from it prematurely and makes them suffer in the process.

Is this the path you want your children to walk?

Do you still not want to "deprive" your children of tasty sweets, desserts, and processed foods? Did you know pizza causes the highest and longest-lasting blood sugar rise of almost any other food on the planet?

You have a real choice to make a real difference in your child's future health on this planet my dear parent. But you can't cop-out by going for the "easy-meal" way by giving your kids processed foods, or stop in at a Mickie D's or BK lounge.

"So what should I eat then Harry?"

Here's a quick example of what I had for breakfast:

* 3 cups of fresh spinach (easy to get -- I simply buy bags of organic spinach from my local grocery store) * 1/2 Haas avocado (it has a higher "good fat" content then the caribbean, or Florida, variety) * 4 ounces of turkey breast (just get it at the deli, sliced up - I like the cajun kind for it's "kick") * 1 tablespoon of UDO's Choice Blended oil (high essential fat content great for a ton of things - helping to release stored body fat being one you might be interested in.;-) ) * 2 ounces of Apple Cider Vinegar * Sprinkled liberally with curry powder (which contains the spice curcumin (turmeric) - a traditionally Indian spice that's been shown to combat human disease such as cancer, inflammation, and atherosclerosis.)

The supplements I took were the following:

* Lifeforce Advanced Antioxidant/Vitamin/Mineral blend * Creafit - Advanced Lean Muscle Formula (remember, always concentrate on building lean muscle, even if you're a woman, as it helps raise your metabolism and burn more fat all day long) * Extra Pantothenic Acid (about 1.5 grams) - helps to utilize fat for burning more efficiently * Astaxanthin - potent antioxidant

I'll take the LifeForce Antioxidant/Vitamin/Mineral blend several times throughout the day. It's best to do this instead of taking the entire days dose at one time.

Reason? Most vitamins are water soluble. If you take too much of them at one time they'll not be used. Better to spread it out throughout the day.

"But what about my kids!", you holler at me, "they're not going to eat a spinach salad for breakfast for goodness sake!"

I hear you my dear parent.

Make them a healthy fruit smoothie with the addition of a few handfuls of fresh spinach. All they'll taste is the great smoothie taste with all of the benefits of spinach too.

In a blender mix the following: *Frozen fruit - strawberries, melons, peaches, pineapple, grapes*1 banana*1 tbsp UDO's choice blended oil*1 cup OJ with pulp*Good tasting protein powder

Blend until smooth and frostie. Not only will your kids love this, but you'll know it's better for them than their normal cereal.

Here's my promised recipe for healthy ice cream. Just take the smoothie recipe above, and pour it into an ice cube tray. Freeze, and wallah! Healthy ice cream your kids will love.

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