For anyone seeking a healthier lifestyle by eating more fruits, vegetables and lean meats, one frustrating byproduct is the amount of food that has to be thrown out because it goes bad – either as a result of over-purchasing or the short shelf life of non-processed foods. Accompanying this waste is a steep financial cost, which by some estimates can amount to $2,000 each year for an average family of four.
According to a May 2019 FDA issue of “Food Facts” on the topic of reducing food waste and maintaining food safety, Americans throw out the “equivalent of $165 billion in food each year.” The bulletin goes on to state that “between 30 and 40 percent of food in the United States goes uneaten – as much as 20 pounds of food per person per month.”
If this weren’t bad enough, food waste is just another tax on the environment. With more than 127 million estimated households in the US alone, it adds up.
“Each year getting food to U.S. tables requires 80 percent of our freshwater, 10 percent of our available energy, and half of our land. Organic waste, mostly food, is the second biggest component of landfills, and landfills are the third largest source of methane emissions… [which are] a major factor in global warming,” states the FDA document.
Although buying too much food contributes to such waste – a problem exacerbated by super-sized, bulk food offerings from club stores – so does the normal day-to-day operation of the refrigerator. Every time the door is opened, warm air rushes in and combines with cold air to create moisture. Too much heat and excessive moisture spoils food prematurely, creates strong odors and even causes the refrigerator to work harder and use more energy.
“Based on 20 years of food service experience, I have found that too much moisture, water vapor or heat in the fridge will accelerate decay and lead to mold or bacteria growth,” says Doug Lynch, Executive Chef and Food/Beverage Service Manager at The Salvation Army’s Redwood Glen Camp and Conference Center in California’s Santa Cruz Mountains. “Keeping the refrigerator drier and colder keeps everything fresh longer.”
Despite his background as a chef, Lynch and his vegan wife still found themselves throwing out too much produce from their home refrigerator because it went bad prematurely.
“No matter how well we planned, we threw out about 20% of our produce because it went bad before we consumed it,” says Lynch. “The waste was costing us at least $40 a week and more than $2,000 a year.”
The challenge is that most fruit emits ethylene gas while ripening, which accumulates in the fridge. This gas damages other fruits and vegetables, causing decay, yellowing, wilting, odor, loss of crunch, and rind breakdown.
Unfortunately, products that have been used for decades to eliminate odors in refrigerators, such as baking soda, do nothing to prevent food spoilage.
However, Lynch says when he started using a new, all-natural, volcanic mineral filter product called Polar Fresh® from Humidity Control Systems, Inc. his food stayed noticeably fresher longer. Lynch had been successfully using the commercial sized filters in the walk-in refrigerator at his work and was happy to learn the company also developed a home-sized version that absorbs the ethylene gas, excess moisture, and odor found in most home refrigerators.
“Since we started using the product in our home, our produce lasts about a week longer and we have cut spoilage by at least 15%,” he adds. “Now we grocery shop every other week, instead of every week, which saves us time.”
The filter, which takes up as much room as an average drinking glass, is comprised of a special blend of “activated” zeolite, which is a natural volcanic mineral. The mineral’s non-soluble, crystalline structure has microscopic channels that allow air to flow through. Simultaneously, the negative ionic charge of the zeolite attracts and holds ethylene gas, vapors, odors, excess moisture, and airborne contaminants.
Decreasing water vapor and excess moisture also inhibit mold and bacteria growth that can accelerate spoilage and even cause food poisoning. On the flip side, if the air in the refrigerator is too dry, the zeolite will release purified moisture back into the air. This helps to maintain optimal humidity levels for food freshness within the refrigerator.
The zeolite minerals can even help the refrigerator to not work as hard to maintain the desired temperature. Because heat exchange occurs within the zeolite mineral, the temperature is lowered by 1-3 degrees. In doing so, the refrigerator uses less electricity and energy savings can be as much as 10%.
“Our home fridge seems colder, and the air compressor runs less often, so we are seeing some energy savings too,” says Lynch.
The Polar Fresh® product comes in a hexagonal shaped box to allow as much air flow to the zeolite minerals, even when tucked in a corner or near other food items. Each filter lasts a full 3 months.
Going Green Starts at Home
While eating healthier, fresher food is becoming a priority for many, premature spoilage and sheer wastefulness has been a frustrating part of the healthy food revolution. Consumers are looking to go beyond familiar options like baking soda which are not effective in keeping food fresher longer and searching for a real solution.
This simple hack of using Polar Fresh®, all-natural fridge filters to deter food spoilage and save energy, can not only help save the environment but can help us continue on our path to living a healthier lifestyle.
For more info, visit www.polarfresh.com or call 888.900.COLD (2653) Toll Free; Fax: 775.246.2005
By Del Williams
Del Williams is a technical writer based in Torrance, California.
He writes about health, business, technology, and educational issues,
and has an M.A. in English from C.S.U. Dominguez Hills.
By Nicole Avena, PhD
Bouncing back from the holidays and into a healthy eating and exercise routine is always easier said than done. What’s also easier is falling back into old habits, especially around the holidays.
On the bright side, getting back on track doesn’t have to be difficult. However, you may feel discouraged if you try to go back to your usual routine all at once. Instead, it’s better to wean yourself off the sugar and ease yourself back into an exercise routine.
Getting back in shape
Even for someone who is in shape, taking just a week off of exercise can decrease your fitness. Thus, jumping right back into your usual routine can feel difficult or be tough on your body, potentially causing injury or a lot of soreness at the very least. Remember that getting back in shape won’t happen in just one day.
Instead of hitting the treadmill and running until you can’t anymore, or struggling to lift heavy weights, take it slow! For example, take a few extra minutes to warm up–stretch, walk on the treadmill, or do a light jog. If weights are more your thing, start with something lighter than you’re used to, and do extra reps rather than bumping up the weight.
Some other post-holiday sweat session examples include: a home workout, a gentle yoga class, keep it short (30 minutes or less), and walk as much as possible (around the neighborhood, at work, in town, etc).
Saying No to Sugar
Good news: you don’t have to quit sugar cold turkey! In fact, cutting out sugar all together might make you more likely to indulge in unhealthy eating habits, such as bingeing. Instead, you want to wean off sugar for the best results. Here’s what you should do:
- Find out what is triggering you to eat sugar. Is it an afternoon slump? Are candies and cookies lying around your house? Once you recognize these triggers, you’ll already be able to make better decisions and ask yourself, “do I really need this?”
- Manage your portion sizes. Instead of depriving yourself of sugar, limit your portion sizes. One tip is to portion out your treats ahead of time if you can, by separating amounts in Tupperware or plastic baggies.
- Out of sight, out of mind. Instead of leaving holiday treats around the house or out in the open, put things away in drawers or in the fridge. Sometimes we don’t have cravings for a treat until we physically see it, but if it’s put away, then you won’t be tempted to reach for it.
- Make healthy snacks available. This step is extremely important. Typically we grab sugary treats because they are easy and readily available! Buy pre-cut veggies and fruits with healthy dips like hummus or guacamole to store front and center in your fridge. Leave fresh fruit on the counter so it’s the first thing you see when you enter the kitchen.
- Make sure you are getting a balanced diet, and use a supplement. Your food choices may not have been the healthiest the past few weeks, which means you may be lacking in some essential nutrients. Even when we are trying our best to eat healthy, we can’t always eat in the proportions that we need to get the correct amount of vitamins and minerals that we need to feel out best, so taking a supplement is key. Opt for a supplement that is complete, like vitafusion’s Women’s or Men’s Multivitamin. These come in gummy form, so they also can help satisfy your candy fix (in a healthy way)!
Finding yummy alternatives to your favorite treats will be a huge help when it comes to kicking sugar to the curb. Here are some ideas to start implementing when thinking of reaching for one of your holiday favorites:
Candy canes → Peppermint tea
Chocolate or fudge → 1 – 2 oz of dark chocolate, preferably 70% cacao or higher
Cookies → Chopped apple with cinnamon and raisins
Candies → Grapes (fresh or frozen)
Hot chocolate → Make your own with 1 cup hot water, 1 tbsp cacao, ¼ tsp vanilla
extract, and 2 tsp maple syrup
Alcohol → Fruity, herbal tea or seltzer with lime
Dr. Nicole Avena is Assistant Professor of Neuroscience at Mount Sinai School of Medicine and Visiting Professor of Health Psychology at Princeton University. She is a research neuroscientist and expert in the fields of nutrition, diet and addiction, with a special focus on nutrition during early life and pregnancy. Her research achievements have been honored by awards from several groups including the New York Academy of Sciences, the American Psychological Association, and the National Institute on Drug Abuse. Dr. Avena has written several books, including Why Diets Fail, What to Eat When You’re Pregnant and What to Feed Your Baby and Toddler. She regularly appears as a science expert on the Dr. Oz Show, Good Day NY, and The Doctors, as well as many other news programs. Her work has been featured in Bloomberg Business Week, Time Magazine for Kids, The New York Times, Shape, Men’s Health, Details, and many other periodicals. Dr. Avena is a member of the Penguin Random House Speakers Bureau. She has the #2 most watched TED-ED Health talk, How Sugar Affects Your Brain.
Martina’s Kitchen Mix is an amazing book that saved my kitchen life.
I’ve read many cooking books before, but this book is one of a kind where it teaches you how to cook many different dishes from all around the world, teaches you how to make some out gorgeous desserts, and very delicious coffee. Moreover, it shows you how to make some really good cocktails which was very helpful whenever I had some friends over. I could make my kitchen a five stars restaurant just from learning some recipes from this easy teaching helpful book.
Reviewed by Ahmad Zeidan
Everyday Enzymes are an all-natural supplement designed to help your body digest and absorb the maximum amount of nutrients. It supports the digestion of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. This supplement can help not only with digestive issues (acid reflux, nausea, gas, etc.) but it can also boost the immune system, metabolism, and improve overall health.Everyday Enzymes may be given to young children, pets and it may even be taken during pregnancy / lactation. (In fact, expectant mothers find it helps with nausea!)
Digestive Enzymes Will Help You:
- Eliminate abdominal pain, bloating, gas, and acid reflux.
- Get the most nutrition out of the food you are already eating.
- Get off of pharmaceutical or over-the-counter drugs.
WHY YOUR FAMILY NEEDS THIS:
We live in a quick-fix, medicine-hungry nation….but medicine is not always the answer! Our body can heal itself if given the chance and this drug-free, all-natural supplement will allow you to do that.
Many people suffer from minor (or major) stomach issues (like gas, bloating, acid reflux) and while taking an antacid may provide relief…it is merely helping the symptoms, not the problem. Everyday Enzymes get to the root of the problem and have been proven to be extremely effective in getting people off pharmaceutical or over-the-counter drugs for digestive issues.
A healthy stomach often benefits many other areas of health. Even if you don’t have stomach problems, these supplements can help boost your immune system, fight fatigue, and even help with anxiety.
“It’s amazing to see people get off pharmaceutical drugs in an all-natural way. This information and these tools need to be shared with everyone now more than ever! It’s never too late to change how you feel.”
– Liz Cruz M.D.
THE SCIENCE BEHIND DIGESTIVE ENZYMES:
In order for your body to benefit from what you eat, you need digestive enzymes to break down the food. Proteins need to be broken down into amino acids; fats need to be broken down into fatty acids and cholesterol; and carbohydrates need to be broken down into simple sugars. At birth we are given a certain potential for manufacturing enzymes in our body, creating an enzyme “reserve.” However, if we do not continually replenish that reserve through proper nutrition, it runs out. Enzyme deficiency can cause digestive issues, a weakened immune system, fatigue, acne, eczema, headaches, mood swings, joint pain.
Dr. Cruz is on a mission to educate and help families adapt a healthy lifestyle that fits their needs.
ABOUT DR. LIZ CRUZ:
//www.drlizcruz.comDr. Liz Cruz is a gastroenterologist, an author, and (most importantly) a parent of 4 children. She is the creator of Everyday Enzymes, as well as a variety of other wellness products designed to promote all-natural, holistic wellness. Cruz’s products have received critical acclaim and are widely praised for effectively reducing the need for prescription medicine. Cruz is a Diplomat of the American Board of Internal Medicine and the American Board of Gastroenterology. She is a member of the American Gastroenterological Association and the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy.
For More Information Visit:
Aromatherapy and essential oils have been trending now more than ever before. Everyone is looking
There is a new over-the-counter analgesic product called Venodol that will make your life and aches better. This awesome product is a topical roll-on cream created to supply long-lasting relief from chronic pain related (inflammation including joint pain, tendinitis, arthritis and body aches). After using Venodol, you’ll feel like new.
Venodol is very easy to use, is non-addictive and is scent free. Also, the product does not use other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, such as aspirin, naproxen sodium or ibuprofen, and does not have acetaminophen.
When we heard that the active component in Venodol is cobra venom, we immediately thought of the fierce venom devouring pain! Cobra venom contains many small proteins that apply analgesic and immune-modulating activity. Even though it is thought that these proteins control the immune system to control the body’s response to injury.
Apply affected areas 3 to 4 times every day, relief from chronic pain should be accomplished within two weeks. Venodol gets the job done.
Visit www.Venodol.com for more information.
Reviewed by Joey Argenziano
Nature’s Way Alliance
A TRU-ID Certified and NON-GMO Box of nature that takes you to what matters. Living life in harmony with our natural surroundings! Nature’s Way in on a mission and the Rainforest Alliance to conserve biodiversity and foster sustainable livelihoods is it! They will donate up to $100,000.00 from the sales of their herbal products to that Rainforest Alliance, let’s all do our part…order for your health and for future sustainability! Kudos to Nature’s Way and how they started in 1969 and going strong!