Individualized Nutrition, Pharmacy and Healthy Living


  • Improve Your Eyesight With Vitamin E Rich Foods

    by Paula Gallagher | May 27, 2015

    spinachMove over carrots. Although beta carotene (precursor to vitamin A and what gives carrots their orange color) has long been THE nutrient for eye health, a new study shows that vitamin E rich foods lessened the chances of cataracts by just over 25%.

    The review published in the Journal Public Health Nutrition looked at  27 studies, including 245,351 individuals from many countries. The researchers looked at vitamin E intake from supplements and diet, combined and alone, and the effect on development of age-related cataracts (ARC). They found a statistically significant decreased risk of developing ARC with increasing dietary vitamin E.

    For eye health, and to help improve your eyesight, eat foods like spinach, broccoli, avocados, shellfish, nuts and seeds are all rich sources of vitamin E. If you have trouble meeting your daily dose of vitamin E,  a Complete Vitamin E supplement will help fill the gap.

    Try this delicious spinach and strawberry quesadilla for your vitamin E quota. This makes enough for about 4 people.

    Spinach and Strawberry Quesadillas

    1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
    2 Tbsp honey
    Juice of 1/2 lemon
    2 cup baby spinach
    3 oz soft goat cheese, crumbled
    1 1/2 sliced strawberries
    1/4 cup chopped mint
    1/4 cup chopped walnuts
    4  8" organic whole grain tortillas

    In small saucepan, bring balsamic vinegar, honey, and lemon juice to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer uncovered until syrupy and reduced to 1/4 cup. This will take about 10 minutes. Set aside to cool. (I would make extra of this and store in your fridge for the next time you want this delicious meal.)

    Heat the skillet over medium heat. Divide spinach, goat cheese, strawberries, mint, and walnuts over half of each tortilla, leaving a 1/2" border. Drizzle balsamic syrup over the top and then fold over the tortillas.

    In a warmed skillet, heat quesadillas for 1 1/2 minutes, or until bottom of tortillas are darkened and crispy. Carefully flip and cook for 1 1/2 minutes more. Slice in half to serve.

    Photo from here, with thanks.

  • Green Spring Cleaning Tips for Your Home

    by Paula Gallagher | May 26, 2015

    green-cleaningI don't know about you, but spring cleaning is a big job around here. However, many of the products we may use while spring cleaning our homes are filled with ingredients that have proven negative long-term effects on our health. Ammonia, sodium hydroxide and triclosan are some of the culprits found in products ranging from laundry detergents to glass and mirror cleaners. These ingredients can linger on just cleaned surfaces and are easily absorbed by human tissues, exposing us and our children to hazardous chemicals with unhealthy side effects. For more information on what's in your cupboard, check out the Environemental Working Group's Guide to Healthy Cleaning.

    Although there are some fantastic safe products  available to purchase, there are also plenty of tried and true items sitting in your pantry right now that can clean your house from top to bottom without any harmful effects. And they work! Here are four recipes for green spring cleaning. Read more

  • EWG's Sunscreen Guide for 2015

    by Paula Gallagher | May 20, 2015

    DSC01707Every year the Environmental Working Group (EWG) puts out a sunscreen guide, rating many brands of sunscreens from 0 to 10. This is known as the ingredient hazard score, and reflects known and suspected hazards of ingredients. The safest, most effective products are rated 0 to 2. Products that are rated 3 to 6 have moderate hazardous to health, and from 7 to 10 are considered high hazards to health.

    When it comes to my children, I am particularly careful about sunscreen. I need it to be safe, effective and easy to put on. And although spray sunscreens seem very convenient, they should be avoided, especially for children as they may pose serious inhalation risks, and they make it too easy to apply too little or miss a spot. It is no secret that I am a fan of the Badger brand for my children. I can clearly see where I have missed a spot, and it keeps the fairest of my children from burning.

    So check out where your sunscreen rates, and visit Village Green Apothecary for more safe sunscreens.

    Also check out this link for more tips on summer safety.

    Enjoy the summer!

  • Dinner Tonight: Grilled Portobello Mushroom Sandwich

    by Paula Gallagher | May 19, 2015

    portobello-mushroomIt is definitely barbecue season. But the grill isn't just for burgers, hot dogs and steaks. There are plenty of options and recipes for those who are vegetarian, vegan or just desire a lighter alternative to meat.

    One of my favorite swaps is using Portobello mushrooms as an alternative to a beef/chicken patty. They are hearty, hold up well on the BBQ and offer a "meaty"  alternative for even the biggest meat lover. An added bonus is that mushrooms are antioxidant powerhouses. One study found both Portobello and cremini mushrooms’ overall antioxidant activity level to be comparable to such colorful vegetables as broccoli, red peppers, and carrots. Take that, sirloin burger!

    Topped with yummy avocado salsa and served open-face on a dense piece of bread (rye or Ezekial), you have a winning recipe that everyone will enjoy. Read more

  • Take Care of the Caregiver - How to Maintain Your Health and Sanity

    by Debi Silber, The Mojo Coach | May 18, 2015

    caregiverRecently, I was asked to comment on: “How to take care of the caregiver?” Are you caring for others? Finding yourself exhausted and overwhelmed? If so, this is for you.

    How do you remember to take care of yourself when you’re a caregiver?
    If we’re spent, depleted and exhausted, we don’t have much to give. As a caregiver, it’s crucial to take care of ourselves so we have the energy, focus and patience to deal with others within our care and reach. If possible, it’s best to plan our our self-care plan because “if we fail to plan, then plan to fail.” That may mean getting in a quick workout early in the day, planning out healthy meals and snacks so we have what we need vs. being at the mercy of whatever is available, and writing down what we need to do for ourselves on a daily basis as an appointment, if necessary. Just as we respect our other appointments, if we schedule time for “an appointment with ourselves,” it’s more likely it’ll get done. Read more

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