Browsing Tag

eat real food


Heart-Healthy, One Bite At A Time

March 9, 2017


The Journal of the American College of Cardiology recently published a review of trending foods and diets recommended for cardiovascular health. Don’t worry, we know that getting dinner on the table is hard enough without having to wade through dietary statistics to figure out what to cook, so here’s the digest.

  • A predominantly plant-based diet filled with fruits and leafy green vegetables is best for cardiovascular health. They have been proven to reduce risk of cardiovascular disease and coronary heart disease, and are the best source of antioxidants (supplements have not consistently demonstrated benefits).
  • The current recommendation is to eat your produce in whole form and avoid juicing, unless you are otherwise unable to consume sufficient fruits and vegetables.
  • Nuts may help control cardiovascular disease risk, but because they are high in calories, they should be eaten in moderation as a substitute for empty calories.
  • For those with a gluten related disorder, a gluten-free diet well-balanced in vegetables, fruits, legumes, beans, nuts and other healthy fats may be beneficial. However, for those who do not suffer a gluten related disorder, a gluten-free diet has not been proven to have any benefit.
  • When it comes to fats, liquid vegetable oils decrease cardiovascular disease risk (particularly olive oil), increasing “good” HDL cholesterol and decreasing “bad” LDL cholesterol. In contrast, solid fats (such as coconut and palm oil) increase risk factors and should be avoided.
  • Unsaturated fats are associated with a lower risk in mortality, and trans and saturated fats are associated with an increased risk of mortality.
  • Animal proteins (in contrast to vegetable proteins) are shown to increase mortality—particularly processed red meat which is associated with cardiovascular deaths.
  • Despite the latest popular belief, one should limit dietary cholesterol such as eggs.
  • In general, a diet high in added fat, fried food, processed meat, eggs, and sugar-sweetened beverages is the most detrimental to one’s health—associated with a 56% increase in coronary heart disease, a higher mean BMI, higher rates of hypertension and type 2 diabetes.

Want to put these heart-healthy findings into practice? There’s an app for that! Foodstand helps you build healthy eating habits into your daily life through guided micro-challenges — with friends. If you want to incorporate more servings of fruits and vegetables into your diet, join the Eat 5 Servings of Fruits & Vegetables A Day Challenge. Looking to eat less meat, animal fats and eggs? Join the Eat Less Animal Products Challenge. If sugar-sweetened beverages are your achilles heel, go for the Avoid Sweetened Beverages Challenge. Or if you want to ditch fried and processed foods, challenge yourself with Eat Real Food. And don’t forget to invite your friends—building heart-healthy habits is better together.



February 20, 2017

Overloaded with all things politics? We are too, but we couldn’t let Presidents’ Day go unnoticed. So Mr. President, we’d like to treat you to a food makeover in honor of this historic day. We’ve been keeping tabs on some of your menu favorites, and you might want to consider swapping out a few items…

Goodbye, Diet Coke. Hello, green tea and sparkling water. President Trump proudly states that he doesn’t drink coffee or tea, but he should reconsider. Antioxidant-rich green tea would be a better choice than artificial sweetener and artificial color-laden Diet Coke for his caffeine fix. Or is it the bubbles you love, Mr. Trump? If so, give Fruit-Infused Sparkling Water a try. It’s cold and refreshing, and fresh fruit gives you a bit of sweetness too (and better bragging rights).

Adios, KFC and McDonald’s. A good-quality cheeseburger every once in a while isn’t going to kill you, but constant consumption of Big Macs, fried chicken, and fast food might. A diet with less meat and more vegetables helps lower your risk for heart disease and type 2 diabetes, and helps counteract climate change. And fast food is typically highly processed—packed with bad fats, chemicals, salt and added sugar. If it’s chicken you’re after, try these Garlic and Herb Roasted Chicken Thighs. Or if you’re jonesing for a burger, go for Eggplant BLT Sliders or Blackened Barramundi Sliders.

Ditch the chips. Sorry Donald, Lay’s potato chips and Doritos corn chips don’t count toward your daily vegetable intake. Instead, grab some Roasted Chickpeas for when the salty crunchy craving hits. They’re high in fiber and nutrients without any bad fat from the fryer.

Switch out ice cream bars for Banana “Ice Cream”. Store-bought ice cream is packed with added sugar and saturated fat. Making Banana “Ice Cream” at home in your food processor is equally as sweet and creamy, no added sugar required. Plus, it’ll help with your fruit intake.


Our health should be the ultimate nonpartisan issue. Congress is out of session so our members of Congress are in their home states for the week, and they would love to hear from you. Pay a visit to your Senators and Representatives, attend a town hall meeting, and tell them why protecting your health, the health of our communities and our planet is important to you.

Have an opinion on Sonny Perdue for example, President Trump’s pick for Secretary of Agriculture? Or the President’s pick for the Food and Drug Administration Secretary? Dislike that the proposed 20% tax on imported goods from Mexico to fund the wall would dramatically increase the price of your fruits and veggies? Or are you concerned about the effect a mass deportation would have on farming, our food economy, and the undocumented workers who grow America’s crops? Speak up for your health and your food!

And if your diet needs a makeover too, check out Foodstand’s Avoid Soda, Eat Less Meat, Avoid Fast Food, Eat Real Food, and Avoid Sweets Challenges to take your health into your own hands. And tell you friends so we can enact change together.