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Cozy up to a comforting mug of festive cider

(NC) After a day of outdoor winter fun, warm up with this guilt-free variation on a long-time holiday favourite. Made with only a handful of ingredients and lightly sweetened with naturally-sourced stevia, this beverage is tasty, easy to make and sugar-free, so it's ideal for the whole family to enjoy.

Cinnamon Cider

Makes 4 servings

Ingredients:

4 cups (1 litre) apple…

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Posted on November 24, 2014 at 1:51pm

Unique gingerbread dip a must-try for holiday entertaining

(NC) Whether you're hosting a fun and festive party or looking for the perfect end to a dinner with family, this tasty twist on gingerbread is an unexpected dessert that will leave everyone delighted. Lightly sweetened with naturally-sourced stevia and served with your favourite fruit, this calorie-conscious dip tastes deceivingly indulgent but won't add those dreaded holiday pounds.

Gingerbread DipMakes 8 servings…

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Posted on November 24, 2014 at 1:50pm

Canadians are taking a lot of antibiotics but should they be?

(NC) In 2013, nearly 23 million antibiotic prescriptions were dispensed by Canadian pharmacies and more than $600 million dollars was spent on antibiotics in Canadian hospitals and pharmacies. According to the Public Health Agency of Canada, approximately 46 per cent of all antibiotic prescriptions by Canadian doctors in 2013 were for respiratory conditions, 14 per cent were for infections of the urinary tract and 10 per cent were for ear infections and other related…

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Posted on November 24, 2014 at 1:49pm

'Tis the season to avoid holiday weight gain

(NC) If egg nog, chocolates, and hors d'oeuvres threaten to spoil your diet plans, registered dietitian and nutrition expert, Tristaca Curley of Fuelingwithfood.com, has an easy plan for keeping calories in check.  

She offers these three guidelines for your next soiree:

1. Carry a hand bag: It all starts before you leave the house. Plan to carry a clutch in one hand and a bottle of water in the other so it's…

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Posted on November 24, 2014 at 1:49pm

The sweet truth for your sweet tooth

(NC) Losing weight is the most common resolution for Canadians year after year – and many of us believe that omitting sugar will be the silver bullet for trimming the pounds. The truth, however, may surprise you. Here are three things to know about this sweet ingredient, according to registered dietitian, Lisa Rutledge of DebunkingDietitian.ca:

Truth: Sugar is not another word for obesity

As most health professionals point…

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Posted on November 24, 2014 at 1:48pm

Get the skinny on aspartame

(NC) As the outdoor temperature drops, that number on the bathroom scale often begins to rise. This year, however, don't fall victim to the dreaded winter weight gain. With the help of Lisa Rutledge, a registered dietitian, let's examine the role of aspartame, a popular choice to help cut calories and keep those pounds off.

It helps to manage calorie intake

Aspartame is a helpful ingr…

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Posted on November 24, 2014 at 1:46pm

Caffeine may not be necessary first thing in the morning

(NC) – If you're like many Canadians, caffeine consumption is part of your morning ritual. Whether it's consumed out of habit or necessity, it seems to awaken the senses and get us going.

But before you go for a coffee run, or grab a can of Red Bull in the morning, you may want to take a peek at your watch. Why? Because you may not be getting the fuel your engine needs at the optimal time.

Enter the fascinating world of…

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Posted on November 24, 2014 at 1:44pm

Get a thyroid check-up if you're gluten sensitive

(NC) Canadians diagnosed with gluten sensitivity – or its more severe form, celiac disease – are almost three times more likely to have thyroid disease. And the thyroid disorder they are most likely to have is an under-active thyroid gland, also known as hypothyroidism.

In a recent survey, 10 percent of Canadian adults who had been diagnosed with either gluten sensitivity or celiac disease said they also had been diagnosed with hypothyroidism. Another…

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Posted on November 24, 2014 at 1:43pm

5 top tips to protect your child's smile

(NC) Kids love the candy of Halloween and the holidays, but with all that sugar, parents do not love the threat of cavities, a fear that is especially real if their children don't keep up with a dependable oral hygiene routine.

According to new research on behalf of Philips Sonicare, while 93 per cent of parents say that they are 'very' or 'somewhat' satisfied with their child's ability to brush their teeth while being supervised, this number drops to…

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Posted on November 24, 2014 at 1:41pm

Keeping holidays healthy

(NC) The holidays can be a stressful time of year for anyone; kids are off school, in-laws are in town, and there's always last minute shopping or gift wrapping to be done. With all the celebrations and visits with friends and family, it's no surprise more people contract contagious infections like the cold or flu around this time of year. This can be particularly worrisome if you are one of the more than 770,000 Canadians who have been diagnosed with chronic obstructive…

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Posted on November 24, 2014 at 1:39pm

10 fast facts about safe food handling

• You can reduce your risk of developing foodborne illness, or food poisoning, by adopting safer food handling practices.

• To avoid contamination, don't allow liquid from meat, poultry, fish and shellfish to spill onto other food, cutting boards, utensils and dishes.

• You don't need to wash your produce in anything but cool, drinkable water.

• You can avoid the “temperature danger zone” which is 4°C to 60°C (40°F to 140°F) by keeping hot food hot and cold food cold. Bacteria can grow in this temperature range. In as little as two hours in this range, your food can become dangerous.

• Never use your nose, eyes or taste buds to judge the safety of food. When in doubt, throw it out.

• Use a digital food thermometer to tell if food is cooked.

• As we age, it becomes harder for our immune systems to ward off harmful bacteria.

• If you develop a foodborne illness during the first three months of pregnancy, it can cause a miscarriage.

• Seniors over 60, pregnant women and people with weakened immune systems are at the greatest risk for foodborne illness.

• Health Canada's website has more tips on safe food handling at www.healthycanadians.gc.ca, including downloadable food safety brochures for pregnant women, seniors and people with weakened immune systems; reference lists of foods to avoid and safer alternatives; cooking temperatures for different types of meat and egg dishes; and an interactive guide for how to handle food safely at home and at grocery store.

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