5 Great Natural Sources of Probiotics

Probiotics are credited with a host of health benefits, including improved heart health, better digestion, and even clearer skin.  And while you can get probiotics from popping a pill, there are also a handful of healthy, natural sources that can deliver a probiotic punch while also providing other vitamins and minerals to nourish your body.

Today we’ll go through five great sources of probiotics and explore how to incorporate these foods into your daily diet.

  1. Kimchi
    You’ll notice that many of the foods on this list are fermented in some way, and kimchi is no exception. This spicy dish originated in Korea and is made by fermenting chopped cabbage, radish, scallions, garlic, and ginger. Non-vegetarians can also add fish sauce or shrimp paste. All the ingredients are mixed together and left to ferment for a few days, allowing beneficial probiotic bacteria to multiply.

    This is the most labour-intensive food on this list, but the health benefits are more than worth the wait. If patience isn’t your strong suit, however, pre-made kimchi is readily available at most grocery stores and Asian markets. You can either eat kimchi on its own or mix it together with rice.

  2. Yogurt
    If strong flavours and spicy tastes aren’t your thing, yogurt might be a better bet for you. Yogurt is made by fermenting milk with lactic acid bacteria and is widely available in many different styles and flavours.

    Although yogurt is one of the best sources of beneficial probiotic bacteria, you may need to read a few labels before finding one with the benefits you’re looking for. The way some yogurts are processed and prepared can kill probiotic bacteria, so look for a tub that specifies Live Culture or Probiotic content. It’s also worthwhile to check the sugar content of flavoured yogurt. Strawberry or coconut flavours may taste better, but their sugar content can sometimes rival that of ice cream – hardly a health food.

    Adding plain yogurt to cereals, smoothies, or fresh cut fruit is one way to take advantage of the probiotic content without overdosing on added sugars.

  3. Sauerkraut
    This dish is kind of like the European take on kimchi. Sauerkraut is also made from fermented cabbage but has more of a sour/salty taste instead of the spicy flavour of kimchi. Sauerkraut is rich in probiotics but also contains fibre, and vitamins C, B, and K.

    Sauerkraut is simple to make at home but is also available in stores and can keep for a few months if stored properly. Just like yogurt, however, the benefits of sauerkraut can disappear if not processed properly, so make sure to read the label of any store-bought sauerkraut. If it has been pasteurized, all those helpful gut bacteria have been killed off. Make sure the label specifies raw or unpasteurized sauerkraut before you buy it to ensure you’re really getting a serving of probiotics.

    Many people enjoy eating sauerkraut on its own, but its salty flavour also makes it a popular topping for hot dogs and sausages.

  4. Kombucha
    This bubbly, flavourful drink is a convenient way to get a serving of probiotics while also quenching your thirst. Kombucha is brewed by steeping black or green tea with a syntrophic culture of bacteria and yeast (SCOBY). The fermentation process produces carbonation, and by using different flavours of tea and adding different fruits to the fermentation process, kombucha makers can produce a dizzying array of flavours.

    This probiotic drink does have a slightly bitter, vinegar taste, so try a few to find one you like. Choosing strong flavours like grape or mango can be good choices for those new to kombucha.

    Kombucha is packed with probiotics and antioxidants, but those who abstain from alcohol may want to skip this one. Kombucha does contain a small amount of alcohol – typically 0.5% or less.

  5. Pickles
    If you like to play it safe and avoid trying new foods, the humble pickle is a great choice to get a serving of probiotics. These sour, crunchy sandwich toppers are made by pickling cucumbers in a solution of salt and water, which creates probiotic bacteria.

    Pickles are rich in potassium and vitamin K, but they have a high sodium content, too, so if you’re on a low-salt diet they may not be the best choice for you. And take care when choosing your pickles, those in a vinegar-based brine don’t have the same probiotic advantage as those in a saltwater mixture.

Any of these five natural foods is a great choice for boosting your probiotic bacteria. Getting to try a delicious snack (or drink!) plus benefitting from a powerful dose of probiotics sounds like a win-win to us!

If none of these options appeals to you, however, or your lifestyle makes meal-planning challenging, choosing a good-quality probiotic supplement can be a great backup plan. In our next article, we’ll discuss what to look for in a probiotic supplement and explore a few options to make sure you’re consistently getting a full serving of beneficial probiotics each and every day.

Health Benefits of Green Tea

It’s easy to make drinking a few cups of green tea a comforting daily ritual, in which each step is relaxing, from steeping the tea to taking that fresh first sip. The benefits of drinking green tea, however, are far greater than a warm drink and a pleasing routine.

Green tea is one of the oldest drinks in the world, and studies show that it may also be one of the healthiest drinks in the world, too. Today we’ll explore some of the most well-established benefits of drinking green tea.

What is Green Tea?
Green tea is one of the world’s oldest drinks, originating centuries ago in China. It’s made by steeping fresh leaves of the Camellia sinensis plant. Green tea has a fresh, mild flavour and its incredible healing properties have earned it a loyal following around the world.

In addition to boosting your hydration levels, green tea has been linked by rigorous scientific studies to the following benefits:

  • Contains substances that reduce free radicals, including “polyphenols that have effects like reducing inflammation and helping to fight cancer…Green tea is about 30 percent polyphenols by weight, including large amounts of a catechin called EGCG. Catechins are natural antioxidants that help prevent cell damage and provide other benefits.”
  • Has similar fat-burning and mental performance boosting properties of coffee, with less chance of jitters and sleep disturbance due to excess caffeine load.
  • Reduces cancer risk. Studies show that regularly drinking green tea reduces the risk of breast cancer in women (by about 20-30%), prostate cancer in men (by about 48%), and colorectal cancer (by 42%).
  • Improves brain health. Healthline says “…green tea contains more than just caffeine. It also has the amino acid L-theanine, which is able to cross the blood-brain barrier. L-theanine increases the activity of the inhibitory neurotransmitter GABA, which has anti-anxiety effects. It also increases dopamine and the production of alpha waves in the brain. Studies show that caffeine and L-theanine can have synergistic effects. The combination of the two is particularly potent at improving brain function”
  • Improves dental health by killing harmful mouth bacteria and reduces bad breath.
  • May help you lose weight, especially around the abdominal area.
  • Lengthens your life. A study of Japanese green tea drinkers showed that those that drank the most green tea were less likely to die in the next eleven years.
  • Improves heart health. Reader’s Digest explains “Green tea contains significant amounts of flavonoids, antioxidants that protect against heart disease by slowing the breakdown of LDL cholesterol, preventing blood clots, and improving blood vessel function. The benefits of green tea also include associations with lower cholesterol and lower rates of artery blockages. People who drink a cup or two a day have a 46 percent lower risk of developing narrowed arteries. Upping that to three cups a day lowers the risk of having a heart attack by 43 percent and of dying from a heart attack by 70 percent.”

Healthy Sips
As these health benefits show, drinking two cups of green tea each day provides far more than just a different alternative to coffee or water. Drinking green tea can help boost your health, lengthen your lifespan, and strengthen your body.

 

To get the most out of this new habit, invest in a good-quality green tea, steep it for 1-3 minutes (depending on your preferred strength and taste), and drink at least two cups each day. Next, we’ll be discussing specifics about how to brew the perfect cup, and whether the time of day you drink green tea makes a difference.

 

Until then, happy sipping!

What Are Probiotics?

Most of the time, our interactions with bacteria are focused on killing or eliminating them – sanitizing our hands, scrubbing our counters, boiling baby bottles, and bleaching clothes. These practices are so commonplace that the idea of bacteria as harmful invaders to be fought and triumphed against can be hard to let go of.

Nonetheless, good bacteria do exist! In fact, our lives depend on them.

Today we’ll be talking about one kind of good bacteria in particular: probiotics. We’ll examine why we need them and explore the essential role they play in our wellbeing.
What Are Probiotics?
Mind Body Green has a very simple way to explain the concept of probiotics, “Probiotics are living organisms that protect the gut, or GI tract, and contribute to overall well-being. In fact, you have trillions of these friendly microscopic ‘bugs’ in your gut and throughout your body right now. It has been estimated that our bodies host just as many microbes as human cells.

Yup, you read that right—you are made up of at least half bacteria. Each person has a unique ecosystem of microbiota, and the diversity of strains can change over the course of a lifetime or even just a few days.”

Why Do We Need Probiotics?
Harvard Health explains that probiotics play a key role in maintaining a healthy digestive system and can wreak havoc when they become imbalanced.  “Microbes in the lower intestinal tract help us digest food, fight harmful bacteria, and regulate the immune system. But sometimes an imbalance of microbes occurs, leading to diarrhea and other health problems. When the gut becomes unbalanced with unhealthy levels of certain bacteria, probiotics can help restore the balance. They’ve been shown to secrete protective substances, which may turn on the immune system and prevent pathogens from taking hold and creating major disease.“

We often think of our gut as a sort of processing factory that works to turn food into fuel. And while this is certainly a helpful analogy, we forget that the factory isn’t automated – it’s staffed with millions of tiny workers busily breaking down food and extracting essential vitamins, minerals, and nutrients. Probiotic bacteria are those workers. Without enough of them, your digestion can get out of whack, causing a host of stomach problems that may just spread to the rest of the body and throw your entire system out of balance.

Given that probiotics are so vital to our health and wellbeing, it’s no surprise that many people are trying to increase the number of probiotics in their diet to give their good gut bacteria a boost. But before you reach for a pill to provide your daily serving of probiotics, consider getting these powerhouses bacteria through food, instead!

Our next article in the series will explain how to do just that. We’ll discuss what natural foods and drinks are rich in probiotics, and how to make sure you’re well on your way to balancing your gut health while also enjoying some delicious new eats.

Until next time!

Why Fibre is an Essential (and Often Overlooked) Health Hero

Let’s be real – fibre isn’t the sexiest subject. Although it’s a complex carbohydrate with many benefits to the human body, fibre is still most often associated with maintaining regular bowel movements. It’s hardly a surprise, then, that it isn’t typically a hot topic of conversation in the same way that the latest superfoods often are.

This article, however, just may change all of that. Today we’ll explain why fibre is far more important to our health and wellbeing than we’ve ever realized.

What Is Fibre?
Fibre is a unique, complex carbohydrate found in plant-based foods. It plays a special role in our digestive system because it is unable to be broken down in the small intestine, which means that it remains intact all the way through to the large intestine where it delivers most of its benefits.

This unique property means that fibre has earned its reputation for easing digestion and preventing constipation – The British Nutrition Foundation (BNF) explains “fibre bulks up stools, makes stools softer and easier to pass and makes waste move through the digestive tract more quickly” – but it also has some incredible properties that are just being discovered.

Probiotic Power
Fibre’s ability to bypass the small intestine and head straight for the colon also imbues it with beneficial probiotic properties, which are extremely helpful in boosting beneficial gut bacteria. Some studies even indicate that fibre may be more crucial to supporting healthy gut flora than probiotics themselves.

The BNF explains, “Research has increasingly shown how important the bacteria in our gut may be to our health, and it has been suggested that a fibre rich diet can help increase the good bacteria in the gut.  Some fibre types provide a food source for ‘friendly’ gut bacteria helping them to increase and produce substances which are thought to be protective such as short-chain fatty acids.”

Scientific American also shares some proven research about how fibre affects the gut – and says that while probiotics get more attention, fibre may be the unsung hero when it comes to gut health. “Fiber has long been linked to better health, but new research shows how the gut microbiota might play a role in this pattern. One investigation discovered that adding more fiber to the diet can trigger a shift from a microbial profile linked to obesity to one correlated with a leaner physique. Another recent study shows that when microbes are starved of fiber, they can start to feed on the protective mucus lining of the gut, possibly triggering inflammation and disease.”

Healthy gut bacteria is crucial to maintaining a healthy mind and healthy body, so when you eat enough good-quality fibre you’re not only making your trips to the bathroom a little more pleasant, you’re also doing your gut health a huge favour, too.

Fabulous Fibre
To take advantage of these health benefits, nutritional recommendations suggest that the average adult make sure to eat 30g of fibre each day. In our next article, we’ll explore sources of fibre-rich foods, and how to tell if you’re getting enough.

How Does Calcium Deficiency Impact You?

Balance is absolutely essential to wellbeing. Too much or too little of anything – whether it’s body fat or stress levels – can throw your wellbeing off-kilter and wreak havoc with your system. Luckily, your body constantly strives to maintain this balance, so all you have to do is help out by supplying the necessary ingredients – your body does the rest!

In order to properly support your physical and mental wellbeing, you must be diligent about getting proper levels of macronutrients (such as protein, fat, and carbohydrates) and macro-nutrients (such as calcium) from your diet. If you don’t, your body suffers, and the effects can be life-threatening.

Today we’re going to examine how calcium deficiency affects your mind and your body.

Short Term
There aren’t any immediate effects of short-term calcium deficiency, but that’s not quite the good news it sounds like. Short-term effects can be damaging but they’re also tough to spot because your body makes up for the missing calcium in your diet by leeching it directly from your bones, weakening your skeletal system and putting you at greater risk of fractures, breaks, and osteoporosis.

If your diet is consistently running a calcium deficit, you can coast along in the short-term without noticing much of a difference but eventually, you’ll experience the effects of long-term calcium deficiency, which are severe and far-ranging.

Long Term
Healthline shares some of the severe long-term effects of low calcium, including:

  • Confusion or memory loss
  • Muscle spasms
  • Numbness and tingling in the hands, feet, and face
  • Hallucinations
  • Muscle cramps
  • Weak and brittle nails
  • Easy fracturing of the bones

University Health News adds that those with chronically low calcium levels may also experience the following symptoms:

  • Fainting
  • Heart failure
  • Chest pains
  • Wheezing
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Voice changes due to spasm of the larynx
  • Irritability, impaired intellectual capacity, depression, anxiety, and personality changes
  • Fatigue
  • Seizures
  • Coarse hair
  • Psoriasis
  • Dry skin
  • Chronic itching
  • Tooth decay
  • Cataracts
  • Osteoporosis symptoms (backache; a gradual loss of height and an accompanying stooped posture; fractures of the spine, wrist, or hip)

Diagnosis and Prevention
Given the fact that it’s the most abundant mineral in the body, it’s no surprise that not getting enough calcium can cause such intense and varied effects in the mind and the body. The invisible nature of calcium deficiency, however, means it’s extra important to stay on top of your intake. If you aren’t getting enough calcium you won’t notice the effects for months – sometimes years- making symptoms easy to ignore and tough to track down to their root cause.

The best way to support your body is to do exactly what you’re doing right now: Educating yourself about this essential mineral and familiarizing yourself with the recommended daily intake, and making a habit of incorporating calcium-rich foods into your diet.

If you’ve chosen this habit because your diet is quite light on calcium-rich foods, consider asking your doctor for a blood test to check your calcium levels. He or she can let you know whether you’re already low in calcium and whether you may need to take a calcium supplement either short-term or long-term, to boost your levels.

Above all else, eating a diet rich in whole foods, fresh fruits and vegetables and varied protein sources will ensure you can meet the daily requirements for calcium, ensuring a strong, healthy body for years to come.

How to Brew the Perfect Cup of Green Tea

While making a cup of tea might seem like the simplest thing in the world (just dunk a teabag into hot water!) making a great cup of tea is a different matter entirely.

We’ve researched how to make the healthiest, best-tasting cup of green tea possible. Here’s how!

The Science of Tea
Mental Floss gives us some insight into the steeping process, and why it’s so important: “When the leaves are submerged in hot water, these [chemical] compounds leach into the liquid through a process called osmotic diffusion, which occurs when there’s fluid on both sides of a selectively permeable membrane—in this case, the tea leaf. Compounds on the surface of the leaf and in the interior cells damaged by processing will diffuse into the surrounding liquid until the compounds in both the leaf and the water reach equilibrium. In other words, if given enough time to steep, the liquid in your mug will become just as concentrated with tea compounds as the liquid in your tea leaves, and the ratio will stay that way.”

Loose Leaf or Bagged?
You can’t beat the convenience of tea bags, but loose-leaf tea is usually made with whole tea leaves rather than broken leaves. This means that the quality of the tea (and therefore the health benefits) may be greater.

Mental Floss goes on to say, “When given room to expand, loose tea leaves swell to their full capacity, creating more room for water to flow in and extract all those desirable compounds. Tea that comes prepackaged in a bag, on the other hand, only has so much room to grow, and the quality suffers as a result”.

Bottom line? If you can, choose loose-leaf teas for a better-quality brew.

Tea Time
We’ve all had times where we’ve forgotten a cup of tea amidst a harried morning’s work, only to come back and find it cold, tea bag still steeping, twenty minutes later. And while drinking a long-steeped cup of tea isn’t the worst thing in the world, there are best practices for how long to steep your tea in order to ensure you’re getting the best cup.

Very Well Fit advises that a great way to brew a cup of green tea is to ensure your water temperature and steep time are precisely monitored, “Green tea is generally heated to 140 to 185 F [60-85 C] and is brewed for one to three minutes “.

How you brew tea can affect the health-properties of the healthy properties in green tea, so it’s important to monitor the brew time and water temperature carefully.

Cold Brew
Interestingly, the healthiest cup of tea might not be hot at all. “A study published in the International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition in 2015, examined the antioxidant power of five white and green tea samples infused with hot (70 or 90 C for 7 minutes) or cold water (room temperature for 15, 30, 60, or 120 minutes),” says Very Well Fit. “The results indicated that for whole, large green tea leaves, the greatest antioxidant activity occurred when the tea was steeped in cold water for 120 minutes.”

So if you have the time, making a cup of cold brewed green tea from whole tea leaves might be your healthiest bet!

Tea Test
Scientific studies are useful, but the most important test to keep in mind is how the tea tastes to you. It doesn’t matter how healthy the tea is if you don’t like its taste!

Experiment with different brew times, different tea leaves, and even the cold brew method to see which one you like the best. When you do, you’ll be that much closer to making a habit of drinking two cups of green tea each day.

The ABCs Of Pilate Exercise

A lot of youngsters have begun practicing pilate exercise lately. Did you know the reason? It stabilizes your pelvic system, aligns body, enhances the muscle movements and improves the skeletal system with easy breathing and there is much more to this pilate concept that you should know.

Why Do You Need Pilates?

Pilates improves your posture, muscles and, focus.

Image Credit: Train For Her

It is no fancy exercise technique to improve your muscles or strengthen your body. It is for all! Pilates offers a total body workout and ensures proper mechanics of your body to complete the daily activities. You need pilates as the strong movements can improve your muscles and reduce injury risks. Most importantly, posture correction is the need of the hour for millennials and it is possible with pilates.

What Should You Possess?

Never practice Pilates exercise without a mat.

Image Credit: Dailymotion

There are just two things you should possess to practice pilates – focus, and mat. The best part about pilates exercise is you can do it anywhere as long as there is a space for the mat. Make sure you never miss out the mat when you practice this exercise.

The Key Position Of Pilate

The neutral position of pilates is the healthiest of all!

Image Credit: Verywell Fit

Every pilate instructor focuses on a neutral position. The purpose of this position is to enable one’s body to align with itself. This again deals with the posture of a person. When you are in a neutral position, you tend to improve your spine health and also get rid of back pains. Simple stretches let you to self align your body and maintain flexibility.

This neutral position actually synchronizes the muscles and lets you focus on your breathing. Instead of consuming tablets for blood flow and concentration, you can simply choose pilate exercise. The alignment improves the energy flows within the body and establishes a connection between the mind and the body.

Pilates Is Not The Same Everywhere

The properties change but the purpose is the same!

Image Credit: Teek Talks

Typically, the pilate exercises are customized based on the purpose. For newbies, the exercise begins with mat and other basic properties like ball, ring and resistance bands. However, based on your need, you are also encouraged to use spring-loaded machines like the barrel, reformer, and Cadillac.

The only mistake to avoid in pilates is ‘never practice by watching videos online.’ They can do more bad than good! Learn it from a certified instructor!

DISCLAIMER: While we have taken steps to check the accuracy of information & practices shared here; it is not a replacement for a doctor’s opinion. it is important to first always check with your own doctor before trying any medication, practice or suggestion from this site.

Dietary supplement boosts cognitive function in vegetarians, finds a study

Vegetarians who take the dietary supplement creatine may enjoy improved brain function, according to a new study. The research will be presented at the American Physiological Society’s (APS) annual meeting at Experimental Biology 2019 in Orlando, Fla.

Creatine is a chemical stored in the muscles and brain that helps build lean muscle. In addition to being produced by the human body, creatine is also naturally occurring in red meats and seafood-and in smaller amounts, dairy products. People who do not eat animal products generally have lower creatine levels in the brain than those who consume meat.

Researchers from Stetson University in Florida studied vegetarian volunteers as well as those who ate either up to 10 or 10 or more servings of beef, chicken, pork or fish each week. The volunteers were split into two groups selected randomly. One group took a daily creatine supplement for four weeks, and the other group did not. Before and after the trial, all participants took the ImPACT test, a widely used standardized measure of neurocognitive function. The vegetarian supplement group scored higher on the ImPACT test than the group that ate 10 or more servings of meat, poultry or seafood per week. “Meat eaters did not show any significant improvement of cognition following supplementation because [their] creatine levels were already elevated [from their diet],” explained Kaitlyn Smith, first author of the study.

“This is a pilot study for future research in the field of cognition, and specifically in vegetarians, as [there is] a shift to meat- and dairy-free alternatives in society,” Smith added.

Popsicles: The fun way to stay hydrated

Is the rising temperature tempting you to grab a cold dessert every now and then? Well, it is something most of us struggle with. And nutritious popsicles are the heaven-sent way out of this dilemma.

“Kiwis, strawberry, blueberry and apple are packed with vitamins and vegetables such as cucumber are not only hydrating but also a great source of fibre. Popsicles made using them are definitely better than eating regular ice cream,” says Dr Monica Jacob, nutritionist and cosmetologist, Bodyz Wellness.

The flexibility that popsicles offer is one of the main reasons why they top the summer nutritious treat list. “Popsicles are distinctive in a way that they can be created with any base liquid ingredient from water and juices to vegetable puree and nut milk. One can also opt to use yoghurt too,” says Joginder Singh, executive pastry chef, Pune Sugar Box, Conrad Pune.

Another reason why they are hit from kids to adults is it is a common factor that unites generations. “Popsicles have only grow in popularity since their inception. They could also be nostalgic for people as it most often than not takes you back to your childhood,” says Ishijyot Surri, chef and co-founder, Pachinco.

And what’s more, it gets kids to gorge on vegetables without throwing a fuss. “Popsicles are a brilliant way to add more vegetables into the diet of your kids,” says Chef Nader Shaikh, executive chef, Sheraton Grand Pune.

Orange Mango Coconut Popsicles

Ingredients:

1 large mango (cut into quarter-inch cubes and divided in 4 cups), 2 cups unsweetened coconut milk (whisked and divided), 3tbsp orange juice, 3tbsp honey

Method

Puree three cups of mango cubes, one and a half cup of coconut milk, orange juice, and honey

Evenly distribute the remaining one cup full of mango cubes among the Popsicle moulds

Add 3tbsp of mango coconut mixture, gently tapping the mould on the kitchen counter to make sure the liquid fills the spaces between the diced mango pieces

Add 1tbsp of coconut milk or until the mold is filled. Poke the Popsicle sticks in the mould, and then freeze for at least six hours, or overnight, and serve.

Minty Watermelon Popsicles

Ingredients:

3 cups watermelon cubes (divided), 1tbsp fresh mint leaves, 1 1/2 cups coconut water, 2tbsp lime juice, 1tbsp honey

Method:

In a blender, puree 2 1/2 cups diced watermelon cubes, mint leaves, coconut water, lime juice, and honey. Cut the remaining 1/2 cup watermelon slices into 1/4 inch cubes

Pour and evenly divide them among the Popsicle moulds. Stir the Popsicle mixture, and then fill each mould

Insert the Popsicle sticks. Freeze for at least six hours, or overnight and serve.

Cucumber, Mint and Coconut Popsicle

Ingredients:

3 cucumber (peeled), 1tbsp fresh mint leaves, 1 1/2 cups coconut water, 2tbsp lime juice, 1tbsp honey

Method:

In a blender, add peeled cucumber, and blend it to make a smooth puree. Blend mint to make a fine paste

Mix the cucumber puree, honey and coconut water together

Mix the mint puree and coconut water together

Pour the cucumber and honey mixture in the Popsicle mold and make a first layer. Then add mint and coconut water mixture to make a second layer. Freeze for at least six hours, or overnight to get a popsicle.

Strawberry Yogurt Popsicles

Ingredients:

3 cups of strawberries ( crushed to fill 1 1/2 cup for the puree), 2 tbsp honey (divided), 2/3 cup vanilla Greek yogurt

Method:

In a blender, add strawberries with honey and blend it. Add greek yoghurt

Tap the mould on the counter to make sure all of the layers settle. Use a small spoon to drag vertically from the bottom to the top of the mold a few times to create a swirled pattern.

Gently tap the molds on the countertop to remove any air bubbles. Inject the Popsicle sticks, and then freeze for overnight or for six hours max. Serve once set.

Orange and Thyme Popsicle with Fresh Kiwi Slice

Ingredients:

1 litre fresh orange juice, 150gm caster sugar, 80gm glucose, 1tsp lemon juice, 5gm fresh thyme, 10 slices of fresh kiwi (thin)

Method:

Warm the orange juice, caster sugar, thyme and glucose till 75 degrees Celsius

Add the lemon juice

Remove from the heat and cool down in ice bath

When cooled, fill the mixture into Popsicle mould; put two pieces of fresh kiwi slice and one Popsicle stick into each mould and freeze overnight.

Next day de-mould and serve.

5 Reasons To Include Mint Family To Your Platter Daily

Did you ever know that the mint family is large and you have only been using mint leaves all through your life? Right from the famous basil to healthy sage or oregano used for garnishing, the mint family has a large number of culinary herbs that are healthy and tasty. Using them daily is important and here are the reasons.

Mint Family Eliminates Tummy Troubles

Drinking peppermint tea daily can alleviate stomach upsets.

Drinking peppermint tea daily can alleviate stomach upsets.

Image Credit: Healthline

It is well known that peppermint oil is used to mitigate pain and eliminate stomach upsets. However, using mint family like peppermint and basil ensures a soothing effect on the stomach. Additionally, drinking peppermint tea can keep a person hydrated so that the tummy does not produce acid due to starvation.

Mint Family Is Overloaded With Health Benefits

Adding a few leaves of basil can clean the harmful radicals in your body.

Adding a few leaves of basil can clean the harmful radicals in your body.

Image Credit: YouTube

Unlike the other edible stuff used to garnish foods, mint family including rosemary, basil and oregano can be used to garnish without a second thought. Sage, for instance, is called as a natural cleaning agent which means it is rich in antioxidants. So, it can eliminate unhealthy foreign bodies from your body. Additionally, it lowers blood sugar levels and enhances oral health.

You Can Cut Down Sodium

Cut down unhealthy salt naturally with mint leaves!

Cut down unhealthy salt naturally with mint leaves!

Image Credit: The Japan Times

Do you enjoy tasting anything salty? Are you the one in your family who adds excessive salt to foods? Adding mint on salads can control your salt intake and also enhance your flavor profile. You don’t have to feel bad about salt sacrifice as it happens naturally.

Mint Family Improves Your Skin

See your skin improving naturally with mint leaves!

See your skin improving naturally with mint leaves!

Image Credit: Stocksy United

Drinking sage/basil/peppermint tea or simply adding mint leaves to the tea you drink can fight against signs of aging. The antioxidants in them along with vitamins E and D tone down the skin and add brightness and freshness to it. If you enjoy drinking tea, you now have another flavor to try out.

Your Immunity Levels Improve

As you add mint leaves to your daily food routine, vitamin C levels improve. As a result, your body gains strength automatically to overcome common ailments. This immunity booster works for all irrespective of the ages.

Mint family is usually underestimated but adding one of them daily to the platter can let you see drastic improvements in your health.

DISCLAIMER: While we have taken steps to check the accuracy of information & practices shared here; it is not a replacement for a doctor’s opinion. it is important to first always check with your own doctor before trying any medication, practice or suggestion from this site.