Marks Daily Apple
Serving up health and fitness insights (daily, of course) with a side of irreverence.

Mark's Daily Apple

5 Jul

3 Healing Herbal Teas You Can Make in No Time at Home

We hope you all had a relaxing and enjoyable holiday!

Here are three healthy, soothing herbal infusions you can make at home. Herbal teas, of course, are not technically “tea”, but the combinations of herbs, fruit and spices promote many aspects of wellness. These are some of our favorites:

Cleansing & Rejuvenation

Recovering from illness? Or maybe a little too much festivity? Here’s a refreshing, stimulating blend.

1 or 2 strips fresh sliced ginger

2 teaspoons peppermint leaves (basil can work, as well, but won’t be as tasty)

1 teaspoon dried lavender

This herbaceous, spicy blend is wonderful for the stomach and digestion. For an extra herbal note you can add a dash of oregano or a sprig of rosemary.

mint

Sir Iwan Flickr Photo (CC)

Stress

Feeling ragged and overwhelmed? On edge? This infusion is guaranteed to relax.

1 rosehip

1 teaspoon linden flowers

1 teaspoon chamomile flowers

This gentle, sweet blend will help you sleep and promote calm. Add an orange peel twist for extra interest.

chamomile

Matsuyuki Flickr Photo (CC)

“Stomach Upset”

Why did I eat that? Here’s a natural tonic that will relieve cramps, gas and digestive complaints.

1 heaping tablespoon blueberries (boil and mash – don’t just use jam!)

1 teaspoon honey

1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

1 sprig peppermint

This tasty, light syrup will have you feeling settled and restored in no time.

blueberries

Lori D Stone Flickr Photo (CC)

Infusion confusion? Here’s how to do it:

Infusion is very simple. You’ll generally want to use about 1 teaspoon of each herb to 1 cup of water, but if you are using dried herbs you may need an extra teaspoon or so. Add the herbs or flowers to water you’ve just boiled (wait for the boiling to settle down before adding the herbage). Cover and wait 10 minutes – presto, infusion! Strain and enjoy.

Source

Further Reading:

Types of tea

Cooking with tea

More Smart Fuel

Technorati Tags: , , , ,

4 Jul

Happy 4th!

We’re taking the day off. We’ll see you all tomorrow!

fireworks

Photo (CC)

3 Jul

MDA International Edition: What’s Going on with China?

Everywhere we look, it’s China in the news. Talk about growing pains. China, get it together!

First, the head of the State Food and Drug Administration accepted upwards of $850 thousand dollars in bribes to approve drugs. He was sentenced to death (imagine if we did that here).

Then, there were the various product scares: toothpaste, pet food, and toys. Hmm. Local is looking better and better, but we Americans sure love our cheap stuff.

Next, it turns out Beijing officials pressured the World Bank to cover up a very dirty fact: smog in China kills hundreds of thousands of people every year.

china

Photo (CC)

How has globalization affected you, for better or for worse?

Some conversation starters: drugs from Canada, AIDS in Africa, food from afar, and dare we say it? Wal-Mart.

Technorati Tags: , , , ,

3 Jul

Eat Your Flowers! (They’re Not Just for Slugs Anymore)

Did you know that many flowers are edible? Of course you knew that. But they are also nutritious. And tasty.

Even though we don’t “do” bread around here, we sure love that Wise Bread blog. They always have excellent articles ranging from consumer concerns to saving money to nifty foods. Though we don’t recommend deep-fried food, baked or grilled zucchini flowers would be delicious. Check it out!

zucchiniflowers

This is Margie James’ Flickr Photo (CC)

You can also eat…

Nasturtiums

nasturtiums

This is Bumbleybee’s Flickr Photo (CC)

Broccoli

broccoliflower

Photo (CC)

Yep, broccoli is actually a flower and not, in fact, a little tree. And one of the most nutritious foods on the planet.

Bachelor Buttons

bachbuttons

This is Terry Bain’s Flickr Photo (CC)

A little bit spicy, but sweet underneath. icon wink

Further reading:

More edible flowers!

Interesting vegetables to try

Top 10 fibrous foods

Save your bored tastebuds now!

Technorati Tags: ,

3 Jul

10 Great Alli Leaks, Oops, Links

So we’re beating a dead llama here, but it’s just flabbergasting that the newest weight-loss gimmick, alli, has made it so far. Maybe I’m just grumpy today. This pill is a) all but ineffective, b) dangerous, c) embarrassing, d) expensive, and e) a retread of an old drug nobody wanted. As you may well know, the blogosphere is having a lot of tawdry fun with this. Here are the best (and – relatively – cleanest) links.

10. Orwellian

Is this our world?

9. GSK Asks You: “Are You Losing It?”

GlaxoSmithKline wants to know if you are losing it. Hmm. This appears to be a case of psychological projection. Glaxo, call us. We know a great therapist.

8. The Gift That Keeps on Giving

After ruining your social life, thrashing your digestive tract, and depleting critical vitamins from your body, alli increases your risk of colon cancer. Just ‘cuz.

7. But, But…It Comes with a Shiny Book!

Would you really want this on your coffee table?

alli

6. “It’s Gonna Take Work on Your Part Too.”

Because our part doesn’t work.

5. In Case You Needed Convincing, the FDA Really Does Not Give a…

But, boy oh boy, you sure will. Do not eat any fat if you take alli (k. d. lang must be excited about GSK’s super-trendy capitalization choice). Avoiding fat is a smart way to get diabetes and depression, but at least you won’t have any trouble with regularity. The results of fat + alli = not pretty. Oh, and alli depletes vitamins from your body. So just like the sailors of yesteryear, you too can experience the joys of rickets. And we can all agree there’s nothing better than experiencing history first-hand.

4. Why Did They Have to Ruin Pizza Forever?

Thanks, Glaxo. Thanks a lot. “You’re probably curious about what alli does in your body.” Why would you draw a pizza comparison to your disgusting drug? What did pizza ever do to you? That’s just rude.

3. So You Want to Take Alli?

Terrific! You’ll just need to diet, exercise, get healthy, and then wait six months. You’ll (maybe) lose five whoppin’ pounds beyond what all that regular exercising and dieting would yield you after six months. People, those five whole pounds will only cost you $360 bucks, your health, and your dignity, so what’s not to love? Come on, you wanted a new wardrobe anyway.

2. When Your Drug Is a Bust…Slap a New Name on It!

Alli is just a lower dosage of xenical (generic orlistat). This weight loss drug bombed as an Rx – apparently people got sick of having to keep an extra pair of dark clothing on hand. Babies.

1. With Allis Like This, Who Needs Enemas?

The Bitter Pill Award goes to Alli, your partner in oily spotting. The incredible thing is that GSK is totally upfront about how terrible alli is…and they’re still selling it. What a world.

bitterpill

Graphic: Bitter Pill Awards TM

Further reading:

Here’s a tip: eat less

We need more fat, not less!

What to eat in a day

Simple, fast weight loss tips for all you busy bees

Eating healthy when you’re pinching pennies

Sponsor note:
This post was brought to you by the Damage Control Master Formula, independently proven as the most comprehensive high-potency antioxidant multivitamin available anywhere. With the highest antioxidant per dollar value and a complete anti-aging, stress, and cognition profile, the Master Formula is truly the only multivitamin supplement you will ever need. Toss out the drawers full of dozens of different supplements with questionable potency and efficacy and experience the proven Damage Control difference!

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , ,

© 2014 Mark's Daily Apple