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Help your body cart away colds

This cold and flu season, look no further than the supermarket aisles to help give your body the tools it needs to stay healthy naturally.

According to Kim Galeaz, RD, CD, contributor to 4 Weeks to Maximum Immunity, maintaining overall health naturally starts with a trip to the grocery store.

"Filling your grocery cart with nutritious foods and beverages from all the food groups will provide your body with essential vitamins and nutrients to help support a healthy immune system," says Galeaz.

As both a registered dietitian and culinary professional, Galeaz has great ideas for how to put nutrient-rich groceries to tasty use in your kitchen. She has developed mouth-watering recipes featuring 100 percent orange juice and other foods that contain vital nutrients and antioxidants to help maintain a healthy immune system.

A nutritional standout, 100 percent orange juice is one of the most nutrient-dense 100 percent fruit juices when compared to other commonly consumed fruit juices.1 One 8-ounce serving is a good source of folate, potassium and thiamin and contains more than 100 percent of your Daily Value for vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant.

"One hundred percent orange juice is one of my favorite ingredients," says Galeaz. "It brings a sweet and tangy flavor to many recipes and provides a variety of nutrients to help maintain good health throughout the year."

Whether looking for a simple snack or a tasty meal, Galeaz's recipes serve up plenty of immune system-supporting nutrients.

Salmon and Orange Salad with Orange Shallot Vinaigrette

Orange Shallot Vinaigrette:

1 cup (8 ounces) 100% Florida orange juice
4 tablespoons walnut oil
1 1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 garlic clove, finely minced
3 tablespoons shallots, finely minced
Freshly ground salt and black pepper to taste


3 cups baby spinach leaves
3 cups mixed greens
1/3 cup sliced mushrooms
6 strawberries, thinly sliced
1/3 cup red onion slices
1 large Florida navel orange, peeled and cut into slices
2 tablespoons roasted and salted sunflower seed kernels
2 smoked salmon fillets (3 or 4 oz. each)*

*Look for either the pouch pack smoked salmon fillets in the canned tuna/salmon section or for packaged smoked salmon fillets in the refrigerated seafood case.

Whisk orange juice, walnut oil, mustard, garlic and shallots together in a small bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste. Set aside. Toss baby spinach and mixed greens together; divide between two large plates or large bowls. Arrange half of the mushrooms, strawberries, red onions and orange slices over each salad. Sprinkle each salad with 1 tablespoon sunflower seeds; top with salmon fillet. Drizzle 4 tablespoons of Orange Shallot Vinaigrette over each salad. Reserve remaining dressing for other uses. Makes 2 servings.

Orange Cinnamon Breakfast Boost

2 cups (16 ounces) 100% Florida orange juice
1 cup low-fat vanilla yogurt
1 Florida navel orange, peeled and cut into one-inch chunks
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Place all ingredients into a blender container and blend until smooth. Serve immediately or refrigerate. Makes 2 servings.

Galeaz shares tips on how to find healthy ingredients to maximize nutrients in your grocery cart:

--Point your cart to produce. Load up on colorful fruits and vegetables to support the immune system. Dark leafy greens, such as kale and spinach, and yellow or orange fruits and vegetables like citrus, bell peppers, carrots, winter squash and sweet potatoes supply a healthy dose of disease-fighting antioxidants. And don't forget canned, frozen and dried fruits and vegetables are convenient, nutrient-rich choices that also may be more economical.

--Spice up your winter. Hot peppers are rich in antioxidants A and C and are a tasty way to spice up your recipes during cold and flu season. Look for any fresh green and red hot peppers or hot sauce, which will allow you to taste your food better with the added bonus of natural antioxidants.

--Pack protein in your winter wellness plan. Protein is important for building, repairing and maintaining all of the body's cells, tissues and organs, which help to sustain the immune system and energy levels. Good sources of protein include low-fat or fat-free milk, reduced fat cheese, lean beef, lean pork, skinless poultry and fish. If you are a vegetarian, try canned and dry beans, lentils or soy products such as tofu, soy milk, meatless burgers and edamame.

1 Rampersaud, GC (2007). A comparison of nutrient density scores for 100% fruit juices. Journal of Food Science 72 (4) 261-266.

Recipe and photo courtesy of the Florida Department of Citrus

Produced by ECES, Inc.

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