_dubord-blog-header The Bord & The Beautiful

  • The New Rules Of "Cheating"

    Posted by Mike DuBord

    Are you finding Hotel Receipts In His Or Her Pockets? Unfamiliar Phone Numbers Lying Around On The Dresser? Then, You've Got Bigger Problems Than I expected Because That's NOT THE KIND OF CHEATING I'M TALKING ABOUT!  C'mon Get Your Mind Out Of The Gutter Big Boy, I'M Talking About Your Diet.

    You already know that a too-strict eating plan can backfire, resulting in a blowout binge or, worse, throwing you off the wagon altogether. But when it comes to allowing yourself a little leeway, moderation is key. But what does "moderation" even mean? For gourmands, a cheeseburger a week might seem reasonable; for health nuts, maybe it's one every 3 months— minus the cheese and bun. To find out who's right, we turned to Sarah Krieger, RD, and Joan Salge Blake, RD, spokespeople for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. For starters, they say you should only indulge in what you love—and skip the rest. If you don't have a weakness for fries, don't eat them just because they're there; and if you don't have a sweet tooth, don't have dessert simply because your dinner buddy does. "For me, I skip pizza and burgers, but I eat a great-tasting sweet treat every day," says Krieger. "I balance it with exercise and eating a variety of nutritious foods."

    Step one: If you're overweight or have health concerns—especially heart disease or diabetes—talk to your doctor. This advice is based on an average 2,000-calorie diet, consumed by American adults at a healthy weight.

    Step two: "Take a look at how active you really are. With most of our lifestyles, we don't need a lot of calories in order to maintain a stable weight," says Salge Blake. Go overboard too often and your waistline—not to mention your heart and your pancreas—may pay the price.

    Step three: Keep a food diary and ask yourself, from a caloric standpoint: If I have this indulgence, what foods will I need to avoid this week to balance it out? Now read on for our tips on how to budget your binge allowance this week—and every week, according to "Mens Health Magazine".

    Bacon

     

    Serving: 4 slices of pork bacon
    168 calories, 12.7 g fat (4.2 g sat. fat), 767 mg sodium, 0.5 g carbs, 0 g sugar

    Who among us can resist the aroma of sizzling bacon? If this is your weekend vice, be sure to curtail your fat and sodium intake for the 6 days before and after. Bacon's saturated fat content is high, says Salge Blake, and just a few pieces make a major dent in the 20 grams most of us can afford to consume daily. So enjoy those crunchy strips—but enjoy them responsibly, heck, don't be afraid to try Turkey Bacon. It's actually pretty darn good.

    Cheeseburger

     

    Serving: 1 restaurant cheeseburger with all the fixins
    940 calories, 58 g fat (22 g sat. fat), 1700 mg sodium, 51 g carbs, 0 g sugar

    With 22 grams of saturated fat, this doozy of a dietary indulgence maxes out your daily saturated-fat allowance in one fell swoop. "Heart disease develops over time, and when [you] eat a diet high in saturated fat, the risk for developing heart disease is greater," says Krieger. If you're determined to chow down on a cheeseburger, your protein choices should all be "lean and mean," according to Salge Blake—for the rest of the week. Again, try a Turkey Burger.

     

    French Fries

     

    Serving: Medium-sized fast food French fries
    410 calories, 18 g fat (3 g sat. fat), 570 mg sodium, 58 g carbs, 0 g sugar

    You've probably been there: The first few fries taste heavenly. As your meal wears on, they start to look (and taste) less appealing—but you polish them off anyway. "With every subsequent bite, the pleasure diminishes," says Salge Blake. Easy solution? Get a small order instead and get a side salad to go with it. Because once potatoes are deep fried, we're sorry to say they don't really count as a vegetable anymore. What's worse, they haven't invented Turkey Fries...YET!

    Chocolate Chip Cookies

     

    Serving: 4 cookies, made from refrigerated cookie dough
    312 calories, 24.8 g fat (14 g sat. fat), 340 mg sodium, 50 g carbs, 40 g sugar

    One of the top calorie sources in the American diet is grain-based dessert—like cake, cookies, and pie, says Salge Blake. And while one or two cookies won't ruin anyone’s diet, most of us don’t stop there—and then we do it again the next day. But this sweet treat's a real sugar-shocker; women should consume just 24 grams (6 teaspoons) of sugar per day, and four cookies almost doubles that. That means you'll have to cut back elsewhere—whether it's in your morning cup of joe or even a glass of fruit juice. Another tip? Give your willpower a break and bake only a few at a time. And no, they haven't invented a Turkey Cookie yet either.

    Ice Cream

     

    Serving: 1/2 cup (1/4 pint) of vanilla ice cream
    260 calories, 14 g fat (8 g sat. fat), 70 mg sodium, 28 g carbs, 28 g sugar

    The saturated fat content of ice cream is high, so you need to watch your intake of all saturated fat—including protein and other sources—when you choose ice cream as your indulgence. A high saturated fat intake increases your (bad) LDL cholesterol levels, which then increases risk of heart disease, says Krieger. Salge Blake's tip for stretching a pint of ice cream to feed four people: "Add fruit to half-cup servings. You'll be dishing up something that looks a lot more generous and satisfying." If you want, add chocolate or crumbled up cookies to the mix.

     

     

    Steak

     

    Serving: one 6-ounce steak
    270 calories, 15 g fat (5 g sat. fat), 105 mg sodium, 0 g carbs, 0 g sugar

    If you're having a craving for it, answer it, says Salge Blake. "With steak, you have less to worry about fat- and calorie-wise when you compare it to a cheeseburger." Still, many steaks come with seriously fatty sides, and the saturated fat does adds up. One way to keep it in check? Order a 3-ounce filet mignon, which is a naturally leaner cut—or get the 6-ouncer and brown bag the rest for later. Another good option: steak kabobs, which control the steak portion size you consume, plus add veggies.

    Fried Chicken

     

    Serving: one 5.7-ounce restaurant fried chicken breast
    360 calories, 21 g fat (5 g sat. fat), 1080 mg sodium, 11 g carbs, 0 g sugar

    Chicken's not bad in itself — it's when it's battered and fried that the fat and sodium issues arise. That's bad news for your blood pressure, which can be spiked by too much salt. Most Americans should consume around 1,500 mg of sodium daily—and this chicken breast almost maxes you out on its own. If you indulge in this, you need to shave down your sodium intake for the rest of the week. Remember: If you spend your allowance in one place, you have to cut corners somewhere else. "It's important to savor high calorie foods, rather than scarfing them down," says Krieger. "Eat them slowly. Smell the aromas, limit distractions like TV or reading, and enjoy with family and friends," she says.

     

     

  • Hot New Movies Opening This Weekend

    Posted by Mike DuBord

     

    Weekend Picks: ‘John Carter,’ ‘Silent House,’ & ‘A Thousand Words’

    Photo: Walt Disney Pictures/Open Road Films/Paramount PicturesLast weekend, "Dr. Seuss' the Lorax" exceeded all expectations by making some serious green at the box office, all while promoting seriousness about being green. It will take a heroic effort to unseat the little orange fur ball from the top spot at this weekend's box office, but there may just be a hero coming to a theater near you on Friday.

    Three major releases are going wide this weekend, for three seemingly different audiences. The sci-fi folks should be more than satisfied, as will the horror/thriller fans. And if you're looking to laugh, a comedy legend makes his return to the big screen. We break down what this weekend's flicks are all about and predict which fans will enjoy each one.
    DisneyJohn Carter
    Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and action.

    What's the Story?
    Civil War veteran John Carter (Taylor Kitsch) finds himself miraculously transported to Mars. After discovering his new environment gives him a superhuman jumping ability, Carter realizes he is not alone and soon becomes embroiled in a war between the warring inhabitants of the red planet. Carter isn't convinced any of these factions deserve his help until he falls for the beautiful Princess Dejah (Lynn Collins) of the Heliumites. In order to save the princess, her people, and the planet, Carter must gain support from the barbarous Tharks and wage war on the evil Zodangans and the omnipotent Therns.

    Who Will Dig It?
    Fans of sci-fi/fantasy, dazzling 3D special effects, action/adventure, and space-hero journeys will find this epic Disney blockbuster out of this world.

     

    Open Road FilmsSilent House
    Rated Rfor disturbing violent content and terror.

     

    What's the Story?
    In this single-take, real-time telling of a truly scary tale, Sarah Murphy (Elizabeth Olsen) comes to town to visit her father (Adam Trese) and to help him fix up the family lake house so it can be sold. When the electricity goes out, Sarah hears a startling sound. Dad goes upstairs to investigate but doesn't come back down. Sarah bravely follows her father, only to find him strangely unconscious. When she tries to get help, Sarah comes to the frightening conclusion that she's trapped inside the house, and that the house has an evil mind of its own. In order to save herself and her father, Sarah must find a way out, fast!

    Who Will Dig It?
    If you love crime, thriller, and horror films, stories based on true events, Elizabeth Olsen, and the filmmaking of Chris Kentis and Laura Lu ("Open Water"), you'll get a scream out of this far-from-homey horror film.

    See this exclusive clip from 'Silent House' with an introduction from Elizabeth Olsen:

     

    Paramount PicturesA Thousand Words
    Rated PG-13for sexual situations, including dialogue, language, and some drug-related humor.

     

    What's the Story?
    Smooth-talking literary agent Jack McCall (Eddie Murphy) will say anything to swing a deal, get ahead, or get what he wants. That is, until Jack breaks his word to a mystical New Age guru, Dr. Sinja (Cliff Curtis). At the guru's behest, a magical Bodhi tree sprouts up in Jack's backyard bearing a finite number of leaves. Every time Jack says a word, another leaf falls. When Jack realizes that no more leaves means no more Jack, he's forced to discover the words that matter most in order to save his family, his career, and his life.

    Who Will Dig It?
    If you like high-concept stories, physical comedy, and Eddie Murphy, then say no more and plant yourself in front of Eddie for a couple of hours.

  • Does Diet Soda Cause Cancer?

    Posted by Mike DuBord

    The Hidden Cancer Threat in Soda

    A contaminant found in two common soda brands could be causing 15,000 cases of cancer in people a year, a new analysis finds.

     

    Cancer-causing caramel color—the latest reason to give up soda.

    Pay any attention to a soda label and you'll find questionable ingredients like sugar in excess amounts, high-fructose corn syrup, or dubious artificial sweeteners. But a new analysis from the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) has detected a cancer-causer that you won't ever find on the label.

    High levels of a carcinogen known as 4-methylimidazole, or 4-MI, are created when certain forms of ammonia are used to create the caramel food dye used in some of the most popular soda brands on the planet. Although CSPI is lobbying the Food and Drug Administration to change label requirements, for now, it's perfectly legal for soda to harbor hidden carcinogens without any disclosure on the label.

    The levels of 4-MI found in some diet sodas are projected to cause 15,000 cancers a year, according to the CSPI assessment


    Testing detected concerning levels of 4-MI contamination in both diet and regular versions of some sodas. While soda makers aren't intentionally injecting the carcinogen into the drinks, 4-MI forms when ammonia or an ammonia-sulfite combination is used to manufacture caramel coloring. "Diet Soda, with the acquiescence of the FDA, are needlessly exposing millions of Americans to a chemical that causes cancer," says Michael F. Jacobson, executive director of CSPI.

    And just as manufacturers add the flame retardant brominated vegetable oil (BVO) to other soft drinks to keep the ingredients from separating, 4-MI is added to some diet sodas purely for cosmetic purposes, giving the soda its brown color. To help shoppers better understand what's in their drinks, CSPI is asking FDA to force manufacturers to disclose when they use ammonia-based caramel colorings, listing "ammonia-sulfite process caramel coloring" or "chemically modified caramel coloring" to the label.



    In addition to Diet Sodas, researchers looked at other soft drinks. The Diet Soda samples contained 4-MI levels up to five times higher than what would warrant a warning in California. (California's laws on labeling carcinogens are stricter than the law that governs the rest of the country.)




  • 10 Amazing Undiscovered Island Vacation Spots

    Posted by Mike DuBord

    Pigeon Point in Tobago (Getty Images)Quiet nights . . . lazy walks . . . spectacular sunsets to view à deux . . . genuine interaction with folks who actually live there . . . off-the-beaten-path islands offer secret spots and stunning surprises in every corner of the world. There are hundreds of possibilities. Here are 10 of the best:

    Tobago, Caribbean
    For Eco-Rich Vacations

    The tiny island of Tobago—unlike its boisterous cousin, Trinidad—is a Caribbean island made for travelers seeking peace, quiet, and time spent with pristine nature. Visitors can hire a guide and hike through the western hemisphere’s oldest protected rain forest, accompanied by song from some 58 different species of birds. The island is also ringed by shallow-water reefs, giving snorkelers, divers, or passengers in glass-bottomed boats the chance to spot some 300 types of coral, plus giant tube sponges, massive rays, graceful sea fans, and fish sporting more colors than Crayola.

    Hike the trail along Tobago’s North Coast for great photos. Kids love to swim in the Nylon Pool, a fish-rich shallow area in the Lagoon. The hotels, including the award-winning Coco Reef Resort & Spa, have a delightfully local feel. It is said that Tobago cooks have “a sweet hand,” creating dishes that magically blend Creole, African and West Indian flavors, often complemented by good local rum. Best of all, Tobago is very eco-friendly. In 2007, the island won the “World’s Leading Green Destination” honor at the World Travel Awards.

    Phu Quoc Island, Vietnam (iStock)Phu Quoc Island, Vietnam (iStock)


    Phu Quoc Island, Vietnam
    For a New Definition of Pristine

    Tourism is developing in Vietnam so quickly that last year’s great island “find” swiftly becomes this year’s overcrowded destination. Pretty Phu Quoc, Vietnam’s largest island, currently remains pristine and affordable. There’s a betting chance that that may last, since 70-80 percent of the mountainous island is protected as the Phu Quoc National Forest. The island‘s close proximity to Cambodia also means that there is an almost-invisible military presence on the north coast.

    This still-affordable destination is home to plantations and fish-sauce factories and miles of deserted beaches, including the aptly named Long Beach. Nights are so dark that constellation spotting becomes a competitive sport. Rent motorcycles (and drivers too if you want) to visit camera-worthy fishing villages. Take out a sea kayak or dive the reef. The Sea Star Resort, one of many fine beach hotels, is close to good restaurants. Don’t expect a wild bar scene. Do expect to cherish the extraordinary quiet—at least for now. If Vietnam is smart, it will help keep this beach-rich island green and pristine. 

    Mnemba Island (Courtesy of andBeyond)Mnemba Island (Courtesy of andBeyond)


    Mnemba Island, Tanzania
    For Ultimate Privacy

    It is so quiet on Mnemba Island, just off Tanzania’s larger island of Zanzibar, that you can hear the silence. This very private African island, managed by &Beyond Africa, consists of only 10 luxurious bandas – cottages hand-woven from palm matting. Sit on your spacious front porch and watch adorable, dog-sized miniature deer amble by. Scuba dive, deep-sea fish, or snorkel to your heart’s delight, or simply enjoy a massage for two in the cool of your banda. Dinner is served on the beach by candlelight.

    The tab here is high: $1,500 per person, per night in peak season (all meals and activities, including multiple dives, are included) and $1,155 per person, per night at other times. The high price tag is justified by the level of laid-back luxury, privacy, and service. Guests also typically tour Zanzibar, home to historic mansions built by Arab traders and visit gardens rich with the scent of spices. While in the capital, Stone Town, shop for colorful local crafts and snap photos of the statue of Freddy Mercury, the late Queen lead singer who grew up there.  

    Guernsey, Channel Islands (Courtesy of VisitGuernsey)Guernsey, Channel Islands (Courtesy of VisitGuernsey)


    Guernsey, Channel Islands
    For Book Lovers

    A few years back, it seemed like every second person was galloping through the pages of "The Guernsey Potato Peel and Literary Society," set on the Channel Island of Guernsey during World War II. Fans of that novel will find that Guernsey—far sunnier and warmer than England, and just two-and-a-half hours away by boat—has changed little since the 1940s. While the island remains “loyal to the British crown,” it is, in fact, much closer to France than England. It is also a major off-shore tax haven, which means that it is both prosperous and pretty (as in well kept).

    The tourist board happily provides maps for fans of the novel, enabling them to visit off-the-beaten path places that they’ve read about. Less bookish visitors can hike nearly 30 miles of cliff paths above the sea, stroll past fields filled with Guernsey cows, and explore gardens bright with flowers. If you can’t actually make the trip, you needn’t worry. The film version of the novel, directed by Kenneth Branagh and starring Kate Winslet, will debut next year. Best advice:  If you do go, try to add on a visit to the tiny island of Sark, the smallest of the Channel Islands— totally car free, and rich with fields of wild flowers. 

    Molokai, Hawaii (Hawaii Tourism Authority / Ron Garnett)Molokai, Hawaii (Hawaii Tourism Authority / Ron Garnett)


    Molokai, Hawaii
    For Finding the “Old Hawaii”

    Love the climate? Love the gentle breeze from the trade winds? Hate the high rises and freeways of Waikiki? Pack your camping gear, or book a room at the classic Hotel Molokai (now the island’s only hotel, though condo rentals are available). Book well in advance if you wish to visit Kalaupapa National Historical Park, where the Belgian priest Father Damien ministered to victims of Hansen’s disease (leprosy) and ultimately died from the disease. Choices to get to this sad but scenic site include riding a mule down and back up a 2.9-mile trail, with 26 switchbacks, along the world’s highest sea cliffs; hiking down; or flying in aboard a six-seat plane.

    However you get there, Damien Tours’ excellent guides tell the rich story of this spectacularly beautiful and bitterly poignant place. In winter, hoards of humpback whales pass by the island. Whale-watching trips are available, but the giant mammals also glide right past Hotel Molokai. Shop for the locally grown (and really strong) coffee at Molokai Coffee Company on the Farrington Highway, and go back on Saturday evening to enjoy some live jazz.  

    Roatan, Honduras (iStock)Roatan, Honduras (iStock)


    Roatán, Honduras

    For Diving Away from the Crowds

    The water surrounding the truly off-the-radar, 2-by-40-mile island of Roatán is so clear that as the plane circles over the Caribbean Sea before landing, it is possible to spot, and even to identify, dozens upon dozens of tropical fish in every color imaginable. Even many veteran Caribbean travelers couldn’t find Roatán, the largest of Honduras’ Bay Islands, on a map. Yet it abuts the second-largest barrier reef in the world, letting snorkelers see hundreds of different fish in rainbow colors, and offering divers the adventure of a lifetime, including tackling a couple of challenging wreck dives.

    An added incentive: It’s much less expensive to take diving lessons on Roatán than almost anywhere else in the Caribbean. Non-divers go just to enjoy sand and sea, and to catch the glorious (some say the world’s best) sunset from West End Beach. The recent addition of a cruise terminal, as well as condo developments targeted toward American retirees, may be changing the scene a bit. Best advice: Go now, while this long and skinny island remains cheap and serene.

    Hvar, Croatia (Hemera)Hvar, Croatia (Hemera)


    Hvar, Croatia
    For Celebrity Seekers

    Hvar, a beach-rich island off Croatia’s Dalmatian Coast, has long been a favorite of the celebrity set, but was off most average Americans’ radar screens. Frequent sightings of the likes of Gwyneth Paltrow, Stephen Spielberg, and Gerard Depardieu – not to mention King Abdullah of Jordan, Princess Caroline of Monaco, and Bill Gates – add a certain allure to this very understated, very green island that shelters the rich and fabulous. Even England’s Prince Harry stopped by in the summer of 2011, venturing into an open-air nightclub called Veranda, where he famously dived backwards, fully clothed, into a swimming pool.

    The addition of more hotel rooms has made it easier for less fabulous folks to vacation on the island now. Visitors can stroll past sweet-smelling fields of lavender, sip glasses of plavac (the local island-brewed red wine) under the stars, hike to rural villages, bask on quiet beaches, swim in a sea as clear as a glass of vodka, or climb up to the historic Spanjol Fortess to get great photos of Hvar’s harbor. 

    Fraser Island, Australia (iStock)Fraser Island, Australia (iStock)


    Fraser Island, Queensland, Australia
    For Roughing It

    Fraser Island, the world’s largest sand island, is a mecca for the backpackers who roam Australia’s East Coast. Rent a 4x4 vehicle on the mainland, being sure to get a special permit to drive on Fraser. Stock up on groceries too, before boarding the ferry at Hervey Bay. It’s worth the trouble. This UNESCO World Heritage-listed island offers rich rewards. Dense rainforest trees tower over the sand dunes below, endless ocean beaches offer abundant privacy, and more than 100 freshwater lakes (some too murky for swimming) add to the mix. 

    Hike to see the colored sand cliffs, some 800 feet high, and explore part of the longest coastal dune system in the world. Start a “life list” to record sighting of rare shorebirds. Spot the occasional saltwater crocodile, and perhaps see a wild dingo. One popular overnight walk takes hikers from Kingfisher Bay, where the ferry lands, to Lake McKenzie, returning the next day. Also for the to-do-list: A guided tour of 5,000-year-old Aboriginal campsites and the wreck of the S.S. Maheno, which served as a World War I hospital ship. Accommodations on the island range from the somewhat luxurious resorts to rental apartments to campgrounds.

    St. Pierre and Miquelon (Marc A. Cormier – www.spm.org)St. Pierre and Miquelon (Marc A. Cormier – www.spm.org)


    St.-Pierre and Miquelon, France
    For Serious Francophiles

    Dying for a perfect baguette? No need to book a flight to Paris. Just zip up to the tiny French islands of St.-Pierre and Miquelon—the last remaining bit of colonial New France—not far from Canada’s cod-rich Grand Banks. That location explains the islands’ abiding French-ness. Under the 1763 Treaty of Paris, France signed off on all North American possessions, except St.-Pierre and Miquelon, ensuring their fishing rights. During Prohibition in the United States, however, bootlegging actually beat out fishing, with nearly 2 million gallons of illegal booze passing through the tiny islands.

    Go in summer, to catch the local Basque Festival (watch, but don’t attempt to compete in, the stone heaving or lumberjacking competitions), or try to catch Miquelon’s luscious Seafood Festival in August. Snap photos of the lighthouse. Take a boat tour to the Grand Banks. See wild horses and alpaca. Visit the small museum and local craft shops. Hike through rugged landscapes, relishing the quiet. Book rooms at the cozy Nuits Saint-Pierre, and try tiny local restaurants for fresh lobster, or cod cooked with French flair.    

    Kefalonia, Greece (iStock)Kefalonia, Greece (iStock)


    Kefalonia, Greece
    For Romantics

    Pretty little Kefalonia, in the Ionian Sea, was largely off tourist’s radar screens until the 2001 release of the ultra-romantic film "Captain Corelli’s Mandolin," based on Louis de Bernières novel, and starring Nicolas Cage and Penelope Cruz. The filmmakers chose their location well, since Kefalonia was, and actually still is, an old-fashioned, unspoiled Greek island – rich with romantic vistas.

    The island remains pretty and pristine because it lacks major tourism, and because many of its buildings are relatively new (the result of a serious earthquake in 1953). Visitors tend to rent villas high up in the hills to catch the cooling breezes, and use rental cars to explore the island’s winding roads and catch the many-miles-away vistas. True romantics can rent speed boats and cruise to isolated beaches (Myrtos on the island’s west coast is a gorgeous one), or can even zoom across the sea to Ithaca—the legendary island where Homer’s Odysseus ruled. Back in Kefalonia, nightlife revolves around the local tavernas, and is fun, but not overly raucous.

  • 6 Healthiest Fish To Eat. Beer Battered Perch And Walleye? Probably Not

    Posted by Mike DuBord

    Although Fish Is Touted As Healthy Food, Not All Fish Are Created Equal.  The Monterey Bay Aquarium's Seafood Watch List Highlights The Fish That Are Truly The Healthiest For Us. I'm Gonna Go out On A Limb Here & Say Beer Battered Perch Probably Didn't Make The List. Find Out 6 Of The Healthiest Fish To Eat And 6 To Avoid And Some Really Delicious Recipes By Clicking On The Link Below.

    http://www.eatingwell.com/recipes_menus/recipe_slideshows/recipes_for_the_6_healthiest_fish?utm_source=EWHNL

  • Don't Wait Until The Chest Pains Kick In Before You Get Checked. That's What I did. BIG MISTAKE!

    Posted by Mike DuBord

    Some of you know what i just went through last week. After spending the last 13 months working out like a Madman, dropping my cholesterol from 460 to 160 and bringing my blood pressure from "Through The Roof" to perfectly normal, i starting experiencing major chest pains. My wife drove me to the nearest emergency room where i spent 8 1/2 hours being poked, prodded, x rayed, M.R.I.'d and every other test under the sun, only to have them tell me..."You're healthy as a horse".  My wife and i quit smoking 30 days ago with the help of "Chantix".  One of the side effects of Chantix is in fact chest pains, which the Attending Doc at the Emergency Room chalked my pains up too. (Thanks Doc!)  At 9p that night, i got a call from a Cardiologist who just a had a strange suspicion that all my test results looked too good. Too good? Really? He felt that my history as a smoker, high cholesterol, my love for bacon wrapped anything AND of course my mother's history of several open heart surguries may in fact be hiding within the walls of my supposed "Healthy as a horse" arteries.  He in fact was RIGHT!

    Wednesday of last week, he went in and found that my right coronary artery (Ya, one of the important ones) had a 90% blockage and put in a stent. This guy literally saved my life. He's convinced that i would have absolutely had a heart attack within the next couple of months had i not gone in. Listenening to that statement come from his mouth wasn't just an eye opener, it literally FREAKED ME OUT! I'm almost 49 years old, NOT 69! This isn't suppose to happen to me. I'm not a big over weight guy. I'm in great shape physically. Well guess what...IT DID HAPPEN TO ME! And i hate to tell you this but...IT CAN HAPPEN TO YOU TOO!

    Seriously, don't wait until you're experincing serious chest pains before you get checked. By then, IT COULD BE TOO LATE! Take a little time out of your very busy life & read up on articles like the one below, get that check-up you've been putting off like i did.  You could very well be saving your life. (Please forgive my preaching)

     http://www.menshealth.com/mhlists/essential_health_tips/?cm_mmc=DDNL-_-834350-_-03052012-_-body

  • Chocolate-Peanut Butter Pie With Bacon...Did I Mention BACON?!?!

    Posted by Mike DuBord

    INGREDIENTS

    Crust
    1
     box Pillsbury® refrigerated pie crusts, softened as directed on box
    1
     egg, beaten
    Bacon
    6
     slices bacon
    Chocolate Sauce
    1
     can (12 oz) evaporated milk
    1
     bag (12 oz) semisweet chocolate chips (2 cups)
    1/2
     cup sugar
    1
     tablespoon butter or margarine
    1
     teaspoon vanilla
    Cream Cheese-Peanut Butter Filling
    1
     package (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
    1
     cup creamy peanut butter
    1/2
     cup sugar
    1
     container (8 oz) frozen whipped topping, thawed
    1
     large banana

    DIRECTIONS

    1 Heat oven to 450°F. Place 1 pie crust in ungreased 9-inch glass pie plate. Press crust firmly against side and bottom. Cut star shapes or other desired shapes from second pie crust. Attach to the edge of pie crust in pie plate with beaten egg; brush tops of shapes with beaten egg. Prick bottom and side with fork. Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until light brown. Cool. 2 Reduce oven temperature to 350°F. Arrange bacon slices on ungreased 15x10x1-inch pan. Bake about 15 minutes or until bacon is crisp and brown. Drain on paper towels. Crumble into small bite-size pieces. Reserve half of the bacon pieces for garnish. 3 Meanwhile, in 2-quart saucepan, heat evaporated milk, chocolate chips and 1/2 cup sugar to boiling over medium heat, stirring constantly. Remove from heat, and stir in butter and vanilla; set aside. 4 In large bowl, beat cream cheese, peanut butter and 1/2 cup sugar with electric mixer on medium speed until smooth. Gently stir in whipped topping until combined. 5 Spread 1/2 cup chocolate sauce over cooled crust. Sprinkle half of the bacon pieces over chocolate sauce. Slice banana and arrange over bacon pieces. Spread cream cheese-peanut butter filling over bacon pieces. Drizzle 2 tablespoons chocolate sauce over filling. Sprinkle remaining bacon pieces over top of pie. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Cover and refrigerate any remaining pie. Or, better yet...EAT IT!!!
  • Lent Is Upon Us. Let's Dig In To All That Delicious Seafood From Festival Foods. It's On Sale.

    Posted by Mike DuBord

    Seafood Sale At My FAVORITE Grocery Store...Festival Foods

    Make a splash with mouth-watering seafood from Festival Foods this Lenten season! During Festival’s famous Seafood Sensations, there are dozens of delicious and sale-priced meal options from the sea. Bring home some delicious Fresh Atlantic Salmon Fillets, Peeled and Deveined Shrimp, North Atlantic Haddock Fillets, Matlaw’s Stuffed Clams or Scallops, Alaskan Cod Fillets, Smoked Salmon, or Cobia Fillets… and enjoy their amazing flavor and health benefits! Studies show, regularly eating seafood has protective benefits to the heart, brain, and joints. So whether you choose to pan-fry, bake, broil, or grill your seafood, you’ll bring your family great taste and great health with Festival’s Seafood Sensations. Hmmmm...Shrimp Alfredo Primavera for dinner tonight sounds like a winner!

    Dad's Chicken

    Looking for a no fuss dinner idea the whole family will love? Well, Festival Foods has just the thing—Dad’s Chicken Breasts! These boneless, skinless, sale-priced favorites come marinated in a variety of flavors like Chili Lime, Teriyaki, Herb and Garlic, Sundried Tomato, and the famous Original variety. Dad’s Chicken Breasts are lean, plump, and incredibly versatile in the kitchen! Just visit festfoods.com and browse through some entertaining cooking videos or use the handy recipe search tool to help spark your creativity. You’ll see how quick and easy it can be to make Thai Citrus Grilled Chicken, Chicken and Basil Stir Fry, Chicken Parmesan, or Smothered Southwestern Chicken with salsa and melted cheese. So, grab some Dad’s Chicken Breasts for dinner tonight! The whole family will love them! And they’re sale priced, this week only, at Festival.

  • Health Benefits From Drinking Coffee. Now, If They Could Only Find These Benefits From Eating Bacon!

    Posted by Mike DuBord

    Find out the health benefits beyond why you should be drinking coffee.

    Over 18,000 studies have looked at coffee use in the past few decades. Lately more and more are reporting real health benefits for coffee drinkers—but they must be balanced against the brew's possible bitter effects, especially in higher, caffeinated doses. An ideal "dose" of java is hard to determine, since people’s perceptions of "a cup of coffee" vary as widely as coffee-mug sizes do. But the good news is that many of the benefits are associated with around two to four (8-ounce) cups a day—"and that’s what most Americans drink anyway," notes Joe Vinson, Ph.D., a coffee expert at the University of Scranton, Pennsylvania. Some intriguing findings:

    Health Benefit 1. Brain Gains

    Moderate coffee drinking—between 1 and 5 cups daily—may help reduce risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease, as well as Parkinson’s disease, studies suggest. How? Coffee’s antioxidants may prevent some damage to brain cells and boost the effects of neurotransmitters involved in cognitive function, say experts. ­Preliminary studies have noted that as coffee (or tea) intake rises, ­incidence of glioma, a form of brain cancer, tends to drop. Some ­researchers speculate that compounds in the brews could activate a DNA-repairing protein in cells—possibly preventing the DNA damage that can lead to cells becoming

    Defeating Diabetes

    Health Benefit 2. Defeating Diabetes

    Studies link frequent coffee consumption (4 cups per day or more) with a lowered risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Scientists suspect that antioxidant compounds in coffee—cholorogenic acid and quinides—may boost cells’ sensitivity to insulin, which helps regulate blood sugar. While most of the research didn’t assess whether the brews were caffeinated, decaf may be even better, since other studies have found that caffeine tends to blunt the insulin-sensitivity boost.

    Health Benefit 3. Hearty Benefits

    Some studies show that moderate coffee drinkers (1 to 3 cups/day) have lower rates of stroke than non-coffee-drinkers; coffee’s antioxidants may help quell inflammation’s damaging effects on arteries. Some researchers speculate that the compounds might boost activation of nitric oxide, a substance that widens blood vessels (lowering blood pressure). More java isn’t better: a 5-cup or more daily habit is associated with higher heart disease risks. Researchers ­believe excessive caffeine may sabotage the antioxidants’ effects.

    Health Benefit 4. Liver Lover

    Though the research is limited at best, it appears that the more coffee people drink, the lower their incidence of cirrhosis and other liver diseases. One analysis of nine studies found that every 2-cup increase in daily coffee intake was associated with a 43 percent lower risk of liver cancer. Possible explanation: caffeine and antioxidant chlorogenic and caffeic acids in coffee might prevent liver inflammation and inhibit cancer cells.

     Now, if they could just find some major health benefits from eating bacon!

     

     

     

  • Cardio Work-Outs Are Great But Now-Days, Pumping Some Iron is Essential.

    Posted by Mike DuBord

    Vigorous aerobic exercise such as fast walking or jogging is great for blasting belly fat, but a total-body weight-training routine boosts results and firms your midsection even more. A 12-week Skidmore College study found that exercisers who did a high-intensity total-body resistance routine combined with cardio lost more than twice as much body fat--in particular, more than 4 times as much belly fat--compared with cardio-only exercisers. The resistance-training group also ate a high-protein diet, while the other group followed a traditional, moderate-protein eating plan. Researchers speculate that the extra fat loss may be due to the stepped-up calorie burn you get after lifting weights and the extra protein. 

    Bonus: You'll be less likely to regain lost pounds. "Whenever you lose weight, it typically comes from both fat tissue and muscle," explains Olson. "Resistance training helps maintain or even add muscle mass, which prevents a slowdown in metabolism

  • Chicken Marsala For Dinner Last Night. Ohhh That Beautiful Sauce!

    Posted by Mike DuBord

    Ingredients:

    • 4 to 6 chicken breast halves, pounded or sliced, about 1/4 to 1/2-inch thickness
    • Salt and pepper
    • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
    • 2 tablespoons olive oil
    • 3 tablespoons butter, divided
    • 8 ounces sliced mushrooms
    • 1/2 cup dry Marsala wine
    • 1/2 cup chicken broth
    • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
    • 1/2 teaspoon dried leaf basil
    • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
    • 3 green onions, thinly sliced

    Preparation:

    Wash chicken and pat dry; sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper.

    Dip chicken in the flour to lightly coat both sides. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, melt butter with oil. Add the chicken and saute for about 2 minutes. Turn and add the sliced mushrooms to the skillet. Continue cooking for about 2 minutes longer, stirring mushrooms occasionally.

    Add the Marsala wine, chicken broth, and lemon and bring to a simmer. Simmer, uncovered, for 5 minutes to reduce slightly. Cover and continue cooking for 5 minutes longer. Add the basil, cream, and green onions and cook for 2 minutes longer.
    Serves 4.