15 Foods You Shouldn’t Live Without

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15 Foods You Shouldn’t Live Without

Apples– The old saying really is true. An apple a day keeps the doctor away, and maybe even some damaging diseases. Apples are beneficial on so many different levels. They pack more Vitamin C than an orange and they are full of antioxidants that will help your body stay healthy. With so many different varieties, it’s easy to pick and choose the flavor that’s perfect for you. Try eating a few slices of apple as an after-dinner snack, or add it to your salad for a bright kick.

Flaxseed– This ancient grain is extremely beneficial, particularly to women who suffer hormone imbalances. As little as two tablespoons a day can help maintain bone health and cut your risk of breast cancer. Make sure you grind it properly before eating, so that you can properly digest it. Flaxseed is great on salads, or even sprinkled into a healthy shake. Some people even find that it adds a delightfully nutty flavor to their morning coffee.

Carrots– These little roots are chock full of beta carotene, which your body turns into Vitamin A. They are essential for eye health and there are a variety of different ways to add them to your diet. Cooking carrots does tend to lessen their benefits, so try to eat them raw when possible. Beta carotene can even help ward off cancer, especially skin cancer. If you have trouble eating them raw, try a few in a healthy soup, or dehydrate them for an afternoon snack.

Tomatoes– Tomatoes are extremely rich in lutein, an incredible nutrient that can keep your eyes healthy. They also contain lycopene, which is an antioxidant. Recent studies have shown that eating a few slices of tomato a day can halve your risk of developing cancer, including bladder, stomach and colon cancer. It’s easy to add a few slices to your dinner, or for a special treat, brush your favorite dressing on them a few minutes before eating.

Onions– Onions have been shown to help lower blood pressure and they contain flavonoids, which are believed to protect your body against cancer. In some cultures, raw onions are applied to the soles of the feet during an illness to help draw out the disease. While chopping onions helps release their beneficial nutrients, you can also try grilling them with a steak, adding a few slices to a hamburger or you can add a few slices to your salad. Onions are also easy to add to soups, stews and stir-fry dishes.

Garlic is extremely beneficial. It can help lower blood pressure, and may even reduce the levels of bad cholesterol in your blood stream. It may even help prevent cancer of the stomach. Add a clove to your next batch of mashed potatoes, or a few slices to your next meal. In addition to making your dish more tender, you’ll be reaping the fantastic benefits. To remove garlic’s odor from your hands, rub them on stainless steel. For garlic breath, try a sprig of fresh parsley.

Cauliflower – This member of the cruciferous family is believed to help prevent cancer and promote a healthy liver. In fact, it may even be beneficial to those suffering from rheumatoid arthritis. Try a few fresh pieces of cauliflower in your salad for maximum benefits, or add it to a soup or stir-fry. If the strong flavor bothers you, its close relative broccoli is also just as beneficial.

Plums– If you suffer from anemia, adding plums to your diet may actually help your body absorb more available iron from your blood stream. Plums are also rich in Vitamin C and it may even help reduce the threat of macular degeneration. Try adding a fresh plum as a desert snack, or if you prefer them cooked, a plum tart is fantastic. Cooking plums does tend to lessen their benefits, but you’ll still get some nutrients. Dried plums, or prunes as they are commonly called, are also beneficial.

Green Tea – This tea is rich in antioxidants and it’s extremely easy to find. Make sure to look for green tea that is made in countries that do not allow certain toxic pesticides to be used during the growth process for a healthier cup of tea. Green tea has been found to reduce the risk of stroke and promote a healthy immune system. You can drink it hot or cold and still benefit from its incredible properties. Green tea can also be used as a poultice on wounds.

Cranberries– These little berries are very important to urinary tract health and they are also rich in antioxidants and vitamins. In fact, the latest research has shown that cranberries can even be used as a very effective antibiotic. Cranberry juice is a great way to get your daily dose of health, but make sure you’re drinking natural juice and not a 10% juice cocktail. You can also try canned cranberries for a delicious side dish at your next meal.

Yams – Candied or not, yams are very good for you. They are an excellent source of Vitamin B6, which is essential for heart health. They also contain a high amount of potassium, which is very important in controlling blood pressure. Wild yams are commonly used to help women suffering from hormonal imbalances and they can even help balance your body’s blood sugar. Try adding yams to replace potatoes as a side dish.

Celery – Celery is a great source of Vitamin C and it Celery contains active compounds called Pthalides which help maintain good blood vessel health. Pthalides can relax the muscles of the arteries that regulate blood pressure allowing these vessels to dilate. Celery can also be a diuretic. . Don’t slather your celery in artery clogging cheese or peanut butter though. Slice up a stalk and add it to your salad or your next pot of soup instead.

Olives – Whether you like them green or black, olives are an excellent source of Vitamin E and it can even act as an anti-inflammatory. They are also a good source of iron, copper and dietary fiber. Olives are easy to add to most dishes. Slice them up and add them to your next salad or just eat them plain. You can also experiment and try olive bread, or just stick with olive oil in your cooking to enjoy its benefits.

Strawberries – This favorite berry is rich in phenols which are good for your heart, can protect against cancer and they can even act as an anti-inflammatory, making them a wonderful addition for arthritis or chronic pain sufferers. Recent studies have shown that strawberries can also protect you from macular degeneration. They are rich in folate, Vitamin B5 and many other nutrients.

Honey– If you’re looking for a natural sweetener that’s actually good for you, honey is an excellent choice. It has anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and anti-viral properties and can protect your body from free-radicals and promote quick healing of wounds. Try to find a apiary near your area for fresh honey. Processed honey loses some of its benefits, but it’s a great alternative in a pinch. Try it on toast as an alternative to butter, or add it your oatmeal for a great sweet taste.

New Alabama AG Says Oil Spill Claims Top Priority

Author: admin  |  Category: Insurance

New Alabama AG Says Oil Spill Claims Top Priority

By Bob Johnson
January 11, 2011

 Incoming Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange says he will hold nothing back to make sure the state and its citizens are compensated for all losses because of last year’s massive BP oil spill.

Strange said he will personally lead the state’s legal efforts — in court and in the claims process — to collect lost revenue and other damages the state suffered because of the spill.

“I’m going to be the number one lawyer,” Strange said in an interview with The Associated Press. He called the oil spill, caused by the explosion that killed 11 workers on the rig Deepwater Horizon, one of the worst environmental disasters Alabama has faced.

“We’re going to fight as vigorously as you possibly can to ensure that Alabama is compensated for the catastrophe by the responsible parties — that’s for environmental impact, that’s for any damage done to our state by BP’s oil spill,” Strange said.

He called dealing with the aftermath of the BP oil spill his “number one challenge.”

Strange inherits lawsuits filed by current Attorney General Troy King against BP and other companies. At the same time, Gov. Bob Riley has pursued efforts to seek compensation through a claims process and derided King for suing the company.

Strange takes the oath of office on Jan. 17 after a rocky period for the AG’s office in which King and Riley feuded over the state’s enforcement of laws against gambling and whether electronic bingo casinos were operating illegally. Some employees have complained quietly that morale in the AG’s office has suffered as a result of the feud with the governor.

Strange was supported by the GOP governor and defeated King in a bitter campaign for the Republican nomination last year. He beat Montgomery attorney James Anderson, a Democrat, in the general election.

During the primary campaign, King accused Strange of having ties to big oil and at one point after the primary refused to brief Strange on efforts to recover claims from BP, partly because Strange as a lobbyist once represented the owner of the oil rig, Transocean. As a result of that clash, Strange said he takes over the oil spill lawsuits and claims without having ever spoken to King.

“I’ve had no conversations or any contact with Troy. I haven’t talked to him since before the primary,” Strange said.

He said their staffs, however, have been working together on transition issues.

The Montgomery law firm headed by former Alabama Lt. Gov. Jere Beasley is representing the state in the oil spill lawsuits. Beasley said his attorneys are continuing to work vigorously on the case.

“We will continue to do that until somebody tells us otherwise,” Beasley said.

Strange said fighting illegal gambling will be part of his office’s efforts to end public corruption in the state. He takes over at a time when several people, including legislators, lobbyists and casino owners, are under federal indictment on charges of trying to buy votes in the Legislature. Federal prosecutors and the FBI have also headed up an ongoing investigation into corruption in the state’s two-year college system.

Strange said he expects the attorney general’s office to take a more active role in those types of cases under his leadership. He said he plans to put together a team of investigators to look into white collar crime and public corruption.

“We are going to work very closely not only with district attorneys in this state but also with federal prosecutors,” Strange said.

Fattest States 2010 CalorieLab’s Annual Obesity Map – State Obesity Rankings

Author: admin  |  Category: Everyday Info

Mississippi is the fattest state for 5th straight year, Colorado still leanest

For 2010 Mississippi has claimed the title of fattest state for the fifth consecutive year, while Colorado continues its streak as the leanest. Maine rose the most places in the rankings over last year, while Oregon dropped the most, according to a new analysis by CalorieLab, Inc.

Fattest States 2010

Most Obese States

Tennessee jumped from fourth place to tie last year’s second place state Alabama. Nine states have obese populations that exceed 30 percent over a three-year average, and in ten states two-thirds of the citizens were either overweight or obese by CDC standards in 2009.

Also not faring well this year was Maine, which rose six places to be the 29th fattest state, from last year’s 35th placing.

Thinnest States

Colorado repeats as the slimmest state, despite a slight increase in obesity of 0.2 percent over three years. In connection with a previous ranking Governor Bill Ritter of Colorado told CalorieLab, “We’re not spared from the national obesity epidemic, and we must remain vigilant in order to guard against it. We’re doing all we can to encourage Coloradans — especially our kids — to take advantage of the natural resources our state offers in order to stay fit, healthy and happy.”

Connecticut was the second skinniest state, with the District of Columbia third, with its three-year average obesity rate actually falling by 0.8 percent from last year. Alaska and Oregon were the only other states whose three-year average obesity rates fell.

Regional Obesity by State Trends

In general, states in the West and New England rank lowest in the fattest states rankings, while states in the South and the Rust Belt tend to rank highest.

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CalorieLab computed the fattest state rankings for this year based on the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System database maintained by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The rankings use a three-year average in order to smooth out statistical fluctuations.

Because of the overall increase in obesity, CalorieLab this year again shifted the color coding used in its map one percentage point higher to maintain an approximately equal number of states per color. This means that this year’s map cannot be directly compared to previous years’ maps. CalorieLab’s United States of Obesity 2010 map is licensed for use by anyone in any media and can be downloaded in various formats (small GIF, large GIF, SVG, EPS).

Map of 2010 Fattest States

The CalorieLab United States of Obesity Fattest States Ranking 2010
2009
Rank
2010
Rank
State % Obese
2009
% Obese or
Overweight
2009
3-year
Obesity
Average
% Obesity
Change
Ranking
Change
1 1 Mississippi 35.3 70.2 33.8 1.3 0
2 2 Alabama 31.6 68.1 31.6 0.4 0
4 2 Tennessee 32.8 68.9 31.6 1.3 2
3 4 West Virginia 31.7 67.5 31.3 0.2 -1
8 5 Louisiana 33.9 67.6 31.2 2.3 3
6 6 Oklahoma 32.0 67.4 30.6 1.1 0
7 7 Kentucky 32.3 66.9 30.4 1.4 0
10 8 Arkansas 31.4 66.5 30.1 1.5 2
5 9 South Carolina 30.0 65.7 29.9 0.2 -4
12 10 North Carolina 30.1 65.3 29.4 1.2 2
9 11 Michigan 30.3 65.5 29.3 0.5 -2
13 11 Missouri 30.5 65.5 29.3 1.1 2
10 13 Ohio 29.7 66.6 29.0 0.4 -3
14 13 Texas 29.5 66.7 29.0 1.1 1
20 15 South Dakota 30.2 67.0 28.5 1.6 5
18 16 Kansas 28.7 64.5 28.2 0.9 2
16 17 Indiana 29.9 65.0 28.1 0.7 -1
14 17 Georgia 27.7 65.3 28.1 0.2 -3
22 17 Pennsylvania 28.0 63.9 28.1 1.3 5
17 20 Delaware 27.5 63.6 27.8 0.5 -3
22 21 North Dakota 28.3 66.0 27.7 1.0 1
22 22 Iowa 28.4 67.1 27.6 0.9 0
21 23 Nebraska 28.0 64.7 27.2 0.4 -2
18 24 Alaska 25.4 63.2 26.9 -0.3 -6
25 24 Wisconsin 29.2 65.6 26.9 0.9 1
27 26 Illinois 27.3 64.3 26.6 0.7 1
25 26 Maryland 26.7 62.8 26.6 0.6 -1
28 28 Washington 26.9 62.4 26.3 0.9 0
35 29 Maine 26.4 64.1 25.8 1.1 6
33 30 Arizona 25.8 64.1 25.7 1.0 3
28 31 Virginia 25.5 60.5 25.5 0.1 -3
32 31 Nevada 26.4 63.0 25.5 0.5 1
31 31 Minnesota 25.3 63.1 25.5 0.2 0
36 34 New Mexico 25.5 61.7 25.4 0.9 2
39 34 New Hampshire 26.3 62.8 25.4 1.3 5
33 36 Idaho 25.1 61.3 25.1 0.3 -3
39 36 Florida 25.9 62.4 25.1 0.9 3
37 38 New York 24.5 60.0 25.0 0.5 -1
38 38 Wyoming 25.3 62.1 25.0 0.7 0
28 38 Oregon 23.6 60.6 25.0 -0.4 -10
41 41 California 25.5 61.2 24.4 0.7 0
42 42 New Jersey 23.9 61.8 23.9 0.4 0
43 43 Montana 23.7 62.0 23.5 0.8 0
44 44 Utah 24.0 57.9 23.2 0.7 0
48 45 Rhode Island 24.9 61.5 22.9 1.2 3
46 46 Vermont 23.3 58.1 22.8 0.7 0
47 47 Hawaii 22.9 57.8 22.6 0.8 0
49 48 Massachusetts 21.8 57.4 21.7 0.5 1
45 49 District of Columbia 20.1 51.7 21.5 -0.8 -4
49 50 Connecticut 21.0 58.9 21.4 0.1 -1
51 51 Colorado 18.9 55.6 19.1 0.2 0
Rankings were computed by CalorieLab based on a three-year average of state-by-state statistics for adult obesity percentages from the CDC’s Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System database. Obesity is defined as a BMI of 30.0 or over, overweight as a BMI of 25.0 to 29.9.