Posts Tagged ‘Natural’

Curb Cravings With Pine Nuts: Natural Appetite Suppressant

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If you have not tried the simple pine nut, you will be amazed at the healthy punch this tiny nut packs. Its key benefit is that it suppresses hunger and tells your brain “Thanks, but I am already full.” Additionally, it slows the emptying of your stomach, again helping you feel full. These benefits are due to a powerful hormone called cholecystokinin (or CCK.)

Siberians used a handful of nuts to sustain them on long hunting trips and as a way to maintain their energy. Portable, tasty and offering a long-lasting fill, they were the perfect trail mix. Still today, in Siberia, a handful of pine nuts precede a meal, setting the stage for a moderate meal.

Pine nuts are delicious with a mild, nutty flavor and contain certain fatty acids that can help suppress hunger. One ounce of pine nuts (approximately ¼ cup) has 190 calories, 19 g of fat and only 4 g of carbohydrates. They contain more protein that any other nut or seed as well as a variety of vitamins and nutrients such as: vitamins E, B1, B2, and B3, beta-carotene (pro-vitamin A) as well as essential amino acids, copper, iodine, iron, magnesium and zinc.

Pinolenic acid is a polyunsaturated fat that encourages two hormones (including CCK) that suppress hunger. It has been studied extensively and is included in many appetite suppressing diet formulas. It signals to your brain that you aren’t hungry any more. These same hormones are included in both pine nuts and pine nut oil.

The secret of CCK

The secret to pine nuts effectiveness is cholecystokinin (or CCK) which is a peptide hormone gene expressed through the digestive tract, set off by food intake and released into the blood stream. The hormone sends a signal to the brain which indicates satiation. It is also believed that partial digested protein aids in the release of CCK. Pine nuts are exceptionally high in protein at 31%.

CCK has been studied at length since its discovery almost 30 years ago. Researchers have discovered that CCK is produced in the duodenum (the beginning part of your small intestine) after eating and sends the “full” feeling to the brain. It releases digestive enzymes from the pancreas, contracts the gall bladder and slows the rate of stomach emptying, helping you feel full. In fact, cholecystokinin means “to move the gall bladder.”

Other health benefits

Additional health benefits of pine nuts include:

Digestive aid
Satiety promoter
Antioxidant protection
Treats gastrointestinal problems
Promotes cardiovascular health
Addresses inflammatory and autoimmune disorders

Incorporating Pine Nuts into your diet

It is easy to add these versatile nuts to your diet in a variety of ways.

They can be tossed into a salad as a nutty addition. Or add them in your next pasta dish or soup for a mild crunch. Pine nuts are an essential ingredient to pesto or can be made into a simple, delicious dip perfect for pita chips or vegetable sticks. Or try them, raw by the handfuls, just like the Siberians.

How to Cook Turkey on Natural Gas Grills

The holidays bring with them thoughts of carving and serving delicious turkey dinners to your family and friends. Tradition has its fans, but perhaps this year you’d like to try a twist to your turkey recipe. If you have a gas grill and enjoy the smoky flavor of grilled meats, why not try grilling your turkey this year? It’s not only possible, it is rather simple. And it delivers a delicious flavored bird to your table. Plus, having the turkey on the grill instead of the oven leaves you with all the room you need to prepare the rest of your dinner in less time.

When you are ready to buy your turkey, the first thing to consider is the size of your grill. You don’t want a bird that is so enormous that it can’t fit on the grill rack. Ideally, the turkey you select should sit on the grill and the lid should close without touching the bird. If this isn’t possible, don’t worry, you can still grill your turkey. You’ll need some heavy duty aluminum foil and either a V shaped grill stand or another metal cooking instrument that you can safely use to prop open the lid of the grill.

Prepare and stuff the turkey as you normally would. Place it on the grill so that it is positioned over one burner that you can turn off. Turn that burner off and the other burner or burners on. Since you can’t really “flip” a turkey, you want the turkey to cook by indirect heat, not by a direct flame underneath it.

You get the smoky flavor by using wood chips. If you haven’t used wood chips before, they’re easy to use. You soak them in water so that as they dry out from the heat of the grill, they’ll release a flavored smoke that infuses the turkey. You can purchase a tray that is designed for putting wood chips on the grill or you can make one yourself from heavy duty aluminum foil. Take the wood chips out of the water and put them into your tray. Place the tray on the grill over the lit burner.

Next, close the lid fully if possible. If not possible, prop the lid up just enough to keep it from touching the turkey. Then cover the remainder of the opening with aluminum foil. If heat gets out you will probably have to cook the turkey longer. However, the foil creates enough of a barrier so the smoke is kept circulating inside the grill and flavoring the turkey.

The time required to cook the turkey will vary depending on whether or not you were able to close your grill completely. If you can, it will take less time. If you can’t, you might want to increase the heat on the other burner or burners to try to make up for the lost heat by having to prop open the grill. After a couple of hours, rotate the turkey 180 degrees to help ensure even cooking.

As with any method of cooking poultry, it’s important to make sure that the internal temperature of the meat reaches 160 degrees Fahrenheit. Ideally you should use a meat thermometer to monitor the temperature as you cook. If you don’t have one, then you’ll have to check the readiness by poking the thigh with a fork or skewer. If the juices that run out are clear and the turkey has turned a nice golden-brown color, then you are ready to remove it from the grill. Consider glazing the turkey with a sauce you use on other meats, or possibly adding barbecue sauce to the traditional cranberry sauce as a condiment. Don’t be afraid to experiment – enjoy the new twist you’re putting on an old family tradition.

Home Styles Large Buffet with Natural Wood Top and 2-Door Hutch in Black

Home Styles Large Buffet with Natural Wood Top and 2-Door Hutch in Black

  • The perfect accent piece to your dining room, this buffet and hutch is constructed of hardwood and w

Smartly styled and equally practical for any dining or entertaining area, the Home Styles Large Buffet and 2-Door Hutch has every one of your serving needs covered. Beginning with a lengthy hardwood table top ideal for any task, this buffet is amply equipped with three spacious pull drawers, an open central shelf above a 9-bottle wine rack, and two large adjustable shelf compartments with inset-paneled doors. The accompanying hutch presents additional storage capacity with two open shelves and a

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Home Styles Furniture Cottage Oak Wood Buffet with Natural Wood Top and 2-Door Panel Hutch

Home Styles Furniture Cottage Oak Wood Buffet with Natural Wood Top and 2-Door Panel Hutch

  • Dimensions: 31 1/4 x 15 7/8 x 71.5

The Cottage Oak 2-Door Hutch Buffet offers both function and simple stylishness for your dining or entertaining area. Attractive with its inset-paneled cabinet doors, overhang natural wood grain table top and taper-cut feet, this buffet has dish ware, utensil storage and display covered with two spacious pull drawers, a dual cabinet hutch and a single adjustable shelf in each of its two lower cabinets. An oak wood finish completes the appeal of the Cottage Oak 2-Door Hutch Buffet, giving it an i

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Home Styles Furniture Black Wood Buffet with Natural Wood Top and 2-Door Panel Hutch

Home Styles Furniture Black Wood Buffet with Natural Wood Top and 2-Door Panel Hutch

  • The perfect accent piece to your dining room, this buffet and hutch is constructed of hardwood and w

The Black 2-Door Hutch Buffet offers both function and simple stylishness for your dining or entertaining area. Attractive with it’s inset-paneled cabinet doors, overhang natural wood grain table top and taper-cut feet, this buffet has dish ware, utensil storage and display covered with two spacious pull drawers, a dual cabinet hutch and a single adjustable shelf in each of its two lower cabinets. A black finish completes the appeal of the Black 2-Door Hutch Buffet, giving it a more definitive l

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