Showing posts with label nutritional supplements. Show all posts
Showing posts with label nutritional supplements. Show all posts

Saturday, September 7, 2019

Reviewing National Fruit and Veggies Month!

Did You Know That September Was National Fruit & Veggies Month?

Image adapted by Lou16 from a Pixabay image

I must admit it took me by surprise, but it's great that we have months where we can check out healthy eating habits.   March is National Nutrition Month and now we are encouraged to be good in September and make sure we eat all of our fruit and veg.

I'll be honest some days it's hard to get all of those serves of fruit and veg - do you find the same?   I do have a few sneaky ways in which I increase my vegetable intake though and I'm going to share them with you here.

  • Greens Balance
  • Spiralized Veggies
  • Hidden Veggies
  • Bulking Out Meals

Greens Balance - My (not so) Secret Weapon!


I love this product it's a powder that provides a serve of fruit and veg in one scoop and it's from 37 different fruit and veg which means you're eating a rainbow.

I usually take mine mixed in a drink, but I know some parents will put a scoop in things such as Bolognese to ensure that fussy children will get some fruit and veg.   I'm actually thinking of making some muffins or pancakes with the Greens Balance on St Patrick's Day next year!

Find out more about this super nutritional booster on my post - Reviewing Arbonne's Greens Balance.


Spiralized Veggies - Reducing Carbs & Adding Veg!


I first heard of spiralized zuchinni/courgette and thought it was an awesome idea and a great way to get my half a plate of vegetables when I just wanted to eat some Spaghetti Bolognese!  Once I brought my own spiralizer I discovered that you can use it on any number of vegetables.

My daughter is all grown up now, but I can imagine her wanting to eat her veggies (especially if she helped spiralize them) when they were in spirals as they just seem more fun!

If you're trying to cut back on eating pasta it is certainly a great compromise, check out my full review - Reviewing A Vegetable Spiralizer.


Hidden Veggies - Sneakily Getting the Veggie Count Up


There are lots of ways in which you can sneak vegetables into your diet from muffins to meatballs and so much more.   These are ways designed to get vegetables past picky eaters, but I love it as just ideas to increase my vegetable intake.

Check out some of these links:


Another way of disguising both fruit and vegetables is by making smoothies or even smoothie bowls.


Bulking Out Meals with Vegetables


Did you know that beans, lentils and chickpeas count towards your serves of vegetables a day?  I tell you that because I love using beans, lentils and vegetables to bulk out my meals.

When my daughter was young and we were a one income household I looked for ways to bulk out our meals, this budget inspired move also had healthy consequences as our vegetable intake increased!

Ideas I implemented included: 

  • Adding a tin of white beans to tomato soup and blending it up (this could count as a hidden veggie).
  • Adding green beans to lamb satay.
  • Adding chickpeas to a chicken curry dish my husband liked.
  • Adding frozen mixed vegetables to tuna pasta bake.
  • Adding spring onions and corn or onion and peas to potato bake.
  • Adding extra beans to chili (I have some recipes that call for black beans in which case I will also add white beans as they take on the flavor nicely and I have some recipes that don't ask for black beans, but I add them anyway!).
  • Adding zucchini to a number of different dishes (if it's in season it goes into just about anything from bakes to chili, shepherd's pie to stews).
  • Soups and stews can be a great way to add lots of vegetables to including any vegetables that are in the fridge (to avoid waste), any frozen veg or tinned veg.

There are countless ideas that can be used to get your vegetable intake up so let me know what your 'secret' way to increase your vegetable intake is.




Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article. “As an Amazon Associate I (we) earn from qualifying purchases.”


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Tuesday, April 7, 2015

A Review of Products That Help Me Get a Good Nights Sleep


Do You Have Trouble Getting a Good Night's Sleep?




I find it hard to fall asleep. Not only am I very distracted by any sounds that aren’t relaxing, I’m also pretty wound up before I go to bed. I do most of my writing at night, and often the ideas are still buzzing around my head when it hits the pillow. Many times I’m not even sleepy. I’m only going to bed because I know it’s past time. 

A Review of Products That Help Me Get a Good Nights Sleep
My Son Asleep on Floor of Motel Room, © B. Radisavljevic

Some people, like my son in the picture, can  fall asleep almost anywhere, as he did on this motel room floor. My husband is another one who can fall asleep the minute he puts his head on the pillow. Sometimes he even falls asleep in his chair. Not me. 

Here's What I've Done to Start Falling Asleep Faster


Nutritional Supplements that Help Me Fall Asleep

For some time now I've been taking a couple of nutritional supplements that have helped me relax if I take them about half an hour before bed every night. One is Natrol® Melatonin 5 Mg, 250 Fast Dissolve Tablets Strawberry Flavor. It has worked better than any other Melatonin product I've tried, and I've tried a lot of them. I usually buy mine at Costco, but I have linked to Amazon here in case Costco isn't convenient for you. I also take an amino acid, Nature's Plus L-Tyrosine with B-6 500mg/50mg - 60 - Capsule. I'm  not so fussy about the brand for this. This combination helps me relax. 


Noise Blockers


I am also very sensitive to noise, and noises can keep me awake even when I'm relaxed and very tired. Before I moved here, my computer was in my bedroom and I didn’t like to turn off more than the energy- hogging display. If I tried to put it to sleep, it didn’t do any good, because for some reason I haven’t yet figured out, it suddenly woke up anyway. So as I was trying to sleep, I heard my computer working in the background, making those distracting little clicking sounds. Sometimes there were animal noises outside or the neighbor on the hill was having a very late party. Now that I've moved to the city, there are even more outside noises, as well as clicking sounds from my windows when the sun comes up. 

It seems the thing that relaxes and soothes me most when I am lying in bed is the sound of rain on the roof. It doesn’t matter how loud the rain is; it’s like a lullaby to me. I finally got the bright idea that I should look for CDs that make rain sounds. But they were hard to find. Almost all the nature sound tracks I found had more than rain in them. They had orchestral accompaniment, bird song, and other things included that although meant to enhance, only disturbed me and broke the steady sound of the rain falling.

It was only after I’d bought and tried about five other CDs that didn’t work for me that I saw Rain and Relaxation on Amazon and bought it. It’s made a great difference. If I go to bed tense or still full of creative fervor that wants to leap back to the computer and write more, I just play the CD, which I keep loaded in my CD player in my clock radio. All I have to do is press the button in the dark to start the process of calming down enough to sleep.

This also works after my early morning bladder wake-up call. At 6 AM the sun is about to rise or has already risen. The birds start making noise outside my window swamp cooler, and sometimes the neighbor’s dog is barking. Later my husband is in the kitchen making his breakfast or talking on the phone. I want to keep sleeping until about nine after my late night writing, so I play the CD again, loudly enough to block out the other noises.

I highly recommend this solution to others who find it hard to fall asleep at night or who fall back to sleep in the middle of the night after using the bathroom. It’s made a great difference in the quality of my sleep. It’s also made a great difference in my temperament in the morning when I wake up.


When Rain Alone Doesn't Do the Trick

Sometimes I need something a bit different than rain alone to put me to sleep. I have shared some of the other recordings I have used below. Although you may also feel the need for white noise, maybe something different like ocean, night nature sounds, or even electronic relaxation is what you need to do the trick. Check  these out, as well as some others that may be suggested as you look at them. 

One more hint. I have a repeat function on my CD player, but it only repeats one track. It really helps to get a CD with everything on one track. The last suggestion here, Summer Evening Serenade, is the one I currently use, since my rain cd wore out and I haven't remembered to replace it yet. It has everything on one track, and I keep it repeating all night. It used to be when a CD ended, it would wake me back up with its whirring sound as it shut off. When it keeps repeating, it doesn't do that. Some of my suggestions below are also available in digital downloads if that works for you.  

Recently I also decided to buy a white noise machine that does a fantastic job of blocking out louder sounds than the CD's  can cover up. Read my review of the Marpac DOHM-DS. 



If you have a way to watch a video on your computer until you fall asleep, I would suggest this one. When I try to put it on my computer the display goes out and I can't hear it anymore, either, so I need to use the CD's.




If You Need to Sleep During Daylight


If you sometimes need to sleep after the sun is up, I have found another useful product. I have had two  surgeries in the last year that required me to move into a one-story house to heal. Fortunately I inherited one I was mostly using for storage and entertaining from my mother , but it's in a neighborhood in the city limits, unlike our rural home. It is much noisier than in the country, and my CD's have become even more important with noisy vehicles parking outside my window and then leaving before even the roosters wake up.

This house also has lots of windows in my bedroom and they face east. Once the sun is up the room is flooded with light. After many mornings trying to keep my head under the covers to block out the sun, I finally broke down and bought this set of eye shades that comes with ear plugs -- Bedtime Bliss® Contoured & Comfortable Sleep Mask & Ear Plug Set. Includes Carry Pouch for Eye Mask and Ear Plugs - Great for Travel, Shift Work & Meditation.

I could kick myself for not getting it sooner. When I had my second surgery last December, I took them to the hospital, and you know how hard it is to have it dark there. The sleep mask was a great help in keeping light out of my eyes, though it couldn't keep the nurses from waking me up. I wasn't quite as happy with the ear plugs, but I've tried every ear plug I've been able to get my hands on, and none of them do much for me.

Begin Now To Sleep Better and Longer


If you have trouble getting a good night's sleep, I hope one of the ideas or products reviewed above will help you. Before you take any supplement, especially if you are on any prescription medications, it's best to check with your doctor first. Just because something is right for me might not mean it's right for you. The sleep mask and music I believe would help anyone. Why not click some of those links now and begin sleeping better very soon. Believe me, a good night's sleep is worth every penny it takes.  


Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article. “As an Amazon Associate I (we) earn from qualifying purchases.”


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