Friday, January 14, 2011

10 Great Sources of Iron

Here are the top 10 food sources of iron, according to the USDA's Dietary Guidelines for Americans. It's worth noting that Vitamin C helps your body absorb iron from food

Iron is essential for building healthy muscles and maintaining healthy blood.

It can be a challenge to get as much iron you need in a day. Knowing which foods contain the most amount of that nutrient can make the task easier. The Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for iron is 18 mg for adult women, and 8 mg for men.

Surprise! Clams take the top prize for providing the most iron. Three ounces of the shellfish provide 23.8 mg of iron and 126 calories. Whether you like them raw on the half shell or cooked in your clam chowder, clams are also a surprising king of the superfoods: clams are also a top source of potassium and Vitamin B12. Clams are unlikely to be contaminated, and according to the Environmental Defense Fund's Seafood Selector, the farming of the most common clams in the U.S. (northern quahogs) does little ecological damage.

Linguine with White Clam Sauce

This includes cold and hot ready-to-eat cereals. The amount of iron you can get from cold cereals ranges from 1.8 to 21.1 mg of iron, but it's typically lower for hot cereals (4.9 to 8.1 mg), so check those labels. Ready-to-eat fortified cereals are also often a good source of calcium.

Three ounces of wild oysters contain 10.2 mg of iron and 116 calories. A true superfood, oysters are also a top source of Vitamin B12. Wild oysters can have high amounts of contaminants, and may be harvested using destructive methods, according to Environmental Defense Fund's Seafood Selector, so stick with farmed Pacific or edible (a.k.a. European) oysters. Enjoy them on the half shell, or try these recipes:

Roasted Oysters with Shallots and Herbs
Oyster Chowder
Fresh Oysters with Champagne Vinaigrette 

Organ Meats
Animal bits such as liver and giblets offer between 5.2 and 9.9 mg of iron, and 134 and 235 calories per three ounces.

A half cup of cooked soybeans contains 4.4 mg of iron and 149 calories.Parents monitoring their children's health, as well as anyone concerned about intake of estrogen, should be aware that soy contains plant estrogens that may cause health problems in high doses. Add them to a salad or try one of these recipes:

Farm Stand Succotash
Edamame Lo Mein

Pumpkin Seeds
Just in time for the Halloween, an ounce of roasted pumpkin and squash seed kernels contain 4.2 mg of iron and 148 calories. Try these recipes:

Baked Acorn Squash with Red Quinoa and Pumpkin Seed Stuffing
Pumpkin Seed Brittle

White Beans
White beans deliver 3.9 mg of iron and 153 calories per half cup. A true superfood, white beans are also a top source of potassium.

Creamy Italian White Bean Soup
Escarole and White Bean Soup
Quinoa Salad with Roasted Asparagus and White Beans
Easy Minestrone

Blackstrap Molasses


Answers to Your Health Questions from Trusted Sources

We've added a new feature to the TRR "Healthy Living" page. You'll find a search bar at the bottom of the Healthy Living page in which you can ask any health, sports, wellness, injury and nutrition question. The answers are provided by the site "ShareCare" which uses experts such as: American Diabetes Association, American Heart Association, American Red Cross, Dr. Oz, Cleveland Clinic, Discovery Health, AARP, and more...
Please, give it a try!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Apples to Apples on Oatmeal

Today I was listening to the radio on my way home, and there was an advertisement for the latest addition to the McDonald's menu that sounded something like this: "Keep your New Year's Resolution with our Apple & Maple Oatmeal Breakfast"

Admittedly, I'm a critic of anything that comes from the Golden Arches. In fact, as a rule, I will not go there - not even for coffee. But I have to admit, after looking up the nutrition information on the McD's website, the oatmeal breakfast choice is not too bad:    - see page 6 for the Oatmeal

McOatmeal w/ Apples Topping w/o Brown Sugar (serving: 9.2oz)
Calories           290
Fat                  4.5g
Saturated Fat  1.5g
Cholesterol      10mg
Sodium            160mg

Homemade w/ Apples Topping (serving: 1/2 cup oatmeal + whole apple)
Calories           205
Fat                  3.2g
Saturated Fat   0.5g
Cholesterol      0mg
Sodium            591mg
  • My recipe includes:  1/2 cup Plain Oatmeal cooked on the stove, a whole (red) diced apple, and a dash of    salt.  Cinnamon would be optional, but would ADD NO NUTRITIONAL DOWNSIDE (calories, fat, sodium, etc)... but it does include antioxidants!

This comparison makes me ask a few questions. First, why the differences in Fat / Saturated Fat and Sodium.  Oatmeal by itself doesn't have a lot of flavor, hence the apples and a dash of salt. The salt is only there to bring out some flavor. Clearly (at least to me) McDonalds has used a fattier oatmeal (or perhaps an added hint of fat) for flavor... we'll never know! I also don't know if you get an entire apple in the McD's version - but with an entire apple, mine comes packed with 6.5g of fiber.

Now, all this criticism should come with a grain of salt. You can CERTAINLY make a better choice if you order the McDonald's Oatmeal over the Bacon, Egg & Cheese Biscuit (my old favorite!) which contains 420 calories, 23g of Fat (12g of which are Saturated) and 235mg of cholesterol (holy cow!)

My point here is this:  Listen and look critically at foods that are touted as "Healthy" and decide for yourself if it's true.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Hobo Chili

Submitted by Chris Thomas & Scott Lee

This "recipe" has a little story to go along with it. Jaime often complains that her adoring husband is a "gross boy" who will eat anything cold... including leftover chili. He claims it's a throw-back from his bachelor days. Knowing that typical chili, loaded with hamburger and cheese, although delicious, isn't the healthiest option; Chris created this simple alternative.

Because this one's from the "boys" we'll just leave it in their distinctive recipe-writing style. Enjoy!

Take some cooked ground turkey or chicken and put it in a bowl. Add some diced tomatoes and some sort of beans. Add some hot sauce - the one with the rooster on the label. Sir it and eat it.

Topped with a dollop of low-fat sour cream, this recipe is only about 250 calories.
Can be eaten hot or cold ;)

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Contest - Submit Your Healthy Recipe


You'll Win a pack of some of our favorite healthy things:
- 1 mini tape measure, to track your healthy progress
- a jar of PB2, dry peanut butter
- Russ' race day running tracks on CD
- copy of "Superfoods Rx"

Please include:
All ingredients, directions, and why you believe the recipe is healthy. Don't forget your name!

Click to Submit Your Recipe