Monthly Archives: August 2015

Wise Eyes: Contact Lens Health Week

Proper contact lens care is important for overall eye health.

Healthy eye care should start early with the help of parents.

The Centers for Disease Control has organized Contact Lens Health Week to raise awareness for healthy eye care. This year’s campaign focuses on teenagers, aiming to start healthy habits early.

“As teens head back to school, reinforcing proper contact lens wear and care can promote good vision and healthy eyes throughout the school year and throughout life,” says the CDC.

The theme this year is “Healthy Habits Means Healthy Eyes,” with emphasis on hygiene, care and storage, as well as regular visits to the doctor.

There are three main habits the initiative supports.

1. Wash your hands before you handle your contact lenses.
2. Don’t sleep in your lenses unless your doctor prescribes.
3. Keep your lenses away from water. Take them out before you shower or use a pool or hot tub.

Eye care is important for your overall health. According to the CDC, “People with vision problems are more likely than those with good vision to have diabetes, poor hearing, heart problems, high blood pressure, lower back pain and stroke, as well as have increased risk for falls, injury and depression.”

Contact Lens Health Week runs from Aug. 24 to 28. The CDC’s site has promotional materials and access to their social media library and web apps.

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Luscious Legumes: Three quick recipes for digestive health

Legumes help digestion and are easy to make.

Legumes aren’t just affordable; they’re healthy and great for digestion.

Legume sounds like a fancy word, but peanuts, beans and peas all fall into that category. And they have some really good features: legumes are affordable, easy to find and great for digestion.

“Legumes, while not often considered a vegetable, are still a healthy source of dietary fiber and can help cleanse your system,” says LiveStrong. ¬†Legumes can also “get waste and food moving steadily through your system.”

We thought we’d give you a couple of quick recipes to get more legumes into your diet.

Peas and Parsley Salad

The beauty of this salad is that it can be served warm or cold and is really versatile. It calls for thawed, frozen peas, tomato, scallion and parsley. Then you dress is up with olive oil and vinegar and top it with salt and pepper.

Our take

  • Since this dish is good year-round, you can add any seasonal veggies or herbs that you have or look good at the store. We recommend bell peppers, zucchini or basil.
  • To make this a complete meal, top it with some cubed chicken breasts or tofu, stir in ground turkey or serve it over top of a piece of fish.

Lentil Stew with Greens and Sausage

One-pot dishes can simplify dinner time and they make really great leftovers. This hearty stew has the digestive bonus of sweet potatoes, upping the nutritional value. Onions, garlic and Italian sausage add lots of flavor and the short list of ingredients makes this recipe a breeze.

Our take

  • The recipe calls for mustard greens or kale, but any earthy green will do. Frozen spinach is an inexpensive way to add some volume to the stew.
  • Garnish the stew with parsley or stir in some Rosemary before you simmer it for extra flavor.

Cucumber and Peanut Salad

Yes, another salad – but it’s not like the other! This recipe from Martha Stewart comes together in a jiffy and since it gets better with time, you can make it ahead. Cucumbers, peanuts and mint get dressed with lime juice and red pepper flakes for a fresh and summery salad.

Our take

  • You could substitute most of these ingredients. Use lemon, olive oil and cilantro, or sub almonds and hot sauce if that’s what you have.
  • This dish is perfect for a party or potluck since you can make it in advance. Just be sure no one has a peanut allergy.
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