15 Summer Fruits & Their Health Benefits

If there is anything good about summer it is the season of Mangoes. But the king of fruits is not the only fruit you can enjoy in summers. Infact there are so many fruits that are summer specific. Not to mention their health benefits that you must try to eat them.

Which fruits are called summer fruits-

Fruits that are available in summer and a loaded with high water content, mineral rich to restore lost salt from the body and are easy on the stomach.

Here are 15 Summer Fruits & Their Health Benefits-

  1. Watermelon– with its 92% water content its obviously the best fruit to beat the heat. Watermelon hydrates your body during summers and replenishes the lost vitamins and minerals. Watermelon is a rich source of vitamin B, C, E and minerals like iron, calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus.
  2. Mango– its undoubtedly the king of fruits in India because its rich in fibre, vitamins, and minerals. Some would also say that its a healthy fruit. But mind the calories of eating too much mango.
  3. Kiwi– is an under loved fruit reserved for topping, smoothies and mainly to show off. But its loaded with vitamins like vitamin A, B6, C and minerals such as magnesium, potassium, and iron, kiwi is one of the best Indian summer fruits.
  4. Muskmelon– kharbooja as its popularly called is a good source of vitamin A, C, potassium, and magnesium. Its high water content makes it the perfect summer fruit.
  5. Figs– Figs are natural sugar-containing summer fruits that provide instant energy during an exhaustive summer. Figs help replenish the dehydrated summer body with minerals like potassium, calcium, and magnesium.
  6. Orange– with more than 80 per cent of water content. They are rich in vitamins and minerals, Oranges keep your body hydrated and protect it from the summer heat
  7. Guvava– is rich in water content, fibre, iron, vitamin B complex, phosphorus, calcium, and carotene. Its also good for your teeth and oral health.
  8. Pineapple– Loaded with vitamin A, B1, B2, B3, B6, C, zinc, magnesium, phosphorus, calcium, and potassium, pineapple helps regain the lost minerals in the summer heat. Grab a drink that has real pineapple in it. Munching on pineapple fruit slices are my favorite. Infact you can add them to so many smoothie recipes.
  9. Plum– they are an eaily ignored summer fruits with so many other options but really they are a good source of vitamins, minerals, and bioactive compounds such as carotenoids and phenolic acids. Plums help improve memory, lower blood sugar levelboosts bone health, and prevent a wide range of diseases.
  10. Lichi– Best eaten fresh these have nutritional components such as polyphenols. Lichi fruit is juicy yummy, it only comes for a very less time; a moth before its going to rain. So make the most of it.
  11. Grapes– There are so man varieties but green grapes are synonymous to summer. Grapes are rich in polyphenols and antioxidants that make them beneficial against infections and help boost brain health
  12. Apricots– Delicious apricots are considered one of the best summer fruits. They are a rich source of beta-carotene that benefits eye health and skin health during summer.
  13. Peach– Peaches are not just good summer fruits but help lower blood pressure and prevent heart diseases. Peaches restore the lost vitamins and minerals in the body due to excessive summer sweat.
  14. Bael– After mango and litchi, bael is the most common among summer fruits in India. You need no ice or refrigeration for bael drink. It is a natural coolant with added benefits of antioxidants and an immunity booster.
  15. Papaya– One of the best summer fruit is papaya because of its enzyme content (papain and chymopapain) that strengthens immunity to fight viral, bacterial, and fungal infections. Its also good for your gut health.

Drinks Ideas For Summer

The opinions, ideas, views expressed in this article is solely my experience based in hope to help my readers. Kindly excercise caution and self judgment.

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Is there Phenoxyethanol in Your Baby Products?

As a mom my first instinct is to protect my kid. Be if physically or emotionally. When I first became a mom I was super conscious of almost everything that I fed my baby and also what I applied on his skin.

I remember when my little one was around 6 months old he developed a white rash like on his body. His skin was itchy and he cried so much. And there was no way I could comfort him. Turns out he caught a reaction from one of the baby lotion & creams I was using.

From then on it’s a habit of mine to check the labels. All products like baby cream to baby wash to wipes and even diaper cream all should be watched for its ingredients.

Baby products these days claim to be organic, free of parabens and sulphate, all natural, plant based, clinically tested. But which one you choose if all say the same thing?

Most baby products these days are paraben-free and sulphate and phthalate-free. However, the new culprit on the block is Phenoxyethanol. There is a lot of talk about whether it is safe to use, its effects on skin and body and whether you should be worried about its presence in baby products.

What is Phenoxyethanol?

Phenoxyethanol is a synthetic preservative that is added to various skincare products to increase the shelf life of a product. It helps to prevent fungi, bacteria, and yeast from growing in your products.

Which products have Phenoxyethanol?

Phenoxyethanol is used in many cosmetics and personal care products like eye shadow, sunscreen, eyeliner, shampoo, blush, deodorant etc. And also in many baby products like soap and body wash, shampoo, Massage oil, Diaper rash creams, lotions.

How will it appear on labels?

You will find it as these names behind any label so check out for them.

  • phenoxyethanol
  • ethylene glycol monophenyl ether
  • 2-Phenoxyethanol
  • PhE
  • rose ether
  • phenoxyethyl alcohol
  • beta-hydroxyethyl phenyl ether

Is it safe to use Phenoxyethanol?

As any chemical it has both good and bad effects.

The Good-

  • Phenoxyethanol is approved by Cosmetic Ingredient review(CIR), Food & Drug Administration(FDA) and European Economic Community(EEC) for usage in products and for consumption.
  • Studies show that it is not a primary or cumulative skin irritant. It is generally considered safe for use in a concentration of less than 1%.
  • Increases shelf life of products.

The Bad-

  • It can also cause allergic reactions in many cases that can be life-threatening.
  • If you are allergic to Phenoxyethanol then you can develop a rash when you apply the product.
  • If you have any skin condition like eczema then products with Phenoxyethanol can be harmful and can even react to exaggerate the current condition. 
  • In infants, it is also known to cause nervous system damage in case of excessive exposure.

Why you should look for Phenoxyethanol free products for your baby?

A baby’s skin is very delicate and its immunity is fragile. Ensuring its safety should be paramount. If possible, stay away from products that have harmful ingredients like Phenoxyethanol in it. Many brands like Chicco baby moments etc. you can find that are making products free of Phenoxyethanol. In fact, they are one of the few brands that have been proactive in producing their products free of Phenoxyethanol, parabens, SLS, SLES, alchohol, and dyes.

Conclusion

As parents, we need to be more responsible shoppers when it comes to choosing baby products. Read the label, research the safety of ingredients, and buy what’s safe & best for your baby.

The opinions, ideas, views expressed in this article is solely my experience based in hope to help my readers. Kindly excercise caution and self judgment.

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100% Whole Wheat Pizza Dough From Scratch

hpmemade whole wheat pizza dough

Pizza’s are everyone’s favorite. But eating pizza makes you feel guilty because of the refined flour pizza dough base and the cheese. There is not much you can do about the cheese as that’s what makes the pizza pizza but you can try to change up the pizza dough flour to suit your dietary needs.

I like to make my pizza at home from scratch and my whole wheat pizza dough recipe from scratch is fool proof. And its tasty, fluffy like a regular dough. Make sure to read the tips at the end of the recipe for a wonderful dough.

Pizza base close-up

How should a pizza dough feel like-

A pizza dough should be airy and springy when poked in with a finger. That’s because of the yeast added to it. A pizza dough should not be firm. It should be loose enough but still together. One your start to expand it it should do so without much effort.

Can I mix flours to make pizza dough-

Yes you can use different ratios like 50-50 or 60-40 or 70-30 of the wheat flour and refined flour to make your dough. Always experiment to see what works best for your taste.

Will a whole wheat flour pizza base taste the same as regular pizza base?

In plain words- No. And its because both flours are different in nature. From their texture to their nutrient quality. But rest assured if you follow the recipe and tips you will love a whole wheat pizza even more.

Is this recipe freezer friendly-

Yes, you can store this dough in freezer for up to a week. What I like to do is when I am making pizza dough I will make some extra(like enough for two pizzas) and use that as a snack pizza a few days later. When I want to use it I simply thaw the dough and get baking. It still tastes as good as fresh. As for any freezer recipe you can thaw the dough and then put it back again in the freezer.

These freezer bags are amazing.

Homemade whole wheat pizza dough

Basic White Bread

Directions to make I like to make 100% Whole Wheat Pizza Dough From Scratch-

5 from 6 votes
hpmemade whole wheat pizza dough
100% Whole Wheat Pizza Dough From Scratch
Prep Time
1 hr 30 mins
Cook Time
30 mins
 

Why not try a whole wheat pizza base from scratch at home with my tips for the perfect pizza dough every single time.

Course: brunch, dinner, Main Course
Cuisine: American, Italian
Keyword: 100% Whole Wheat Pizza Dough From Scratch, atta pizza, pizza at home, pizza from scratch, whole wheat pizza
Servings: 5 -9 inch pizzas
Author: Avin Kohli
Ingredients
For the dough-
  • 3 cup wholewheat flour
  • 1.5 cup lukewarm water
  • 1.5 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp Instant yeast
  • 1 tsp sugar or honey
  • 1 tsp oil
For pizza toppings-
  • 1/4 cup mixed color peppers
  • 1/4 cup sliced mushrooms
  • 1/4 cup sliced baby corn
  • 1/4 cup thinly sliced onions
  • Salt & Pepper as per taste
  • Pizza seasoning as per taste
  • 1 pakcket Pizza sauce
  • 400 gm cheese of your choice
Instructions
For the pizza dough-
  1. In a large bowl add yeast, sugar or honey and lukewarm water. Mix and leave it aside for 5-7 mins. It should froth up. If not discard it and start again with new, fresh packet of yeast.

  2. Now add the whole wheat flour and salt. Mix with a work. Mix as much can be mixed easily.

  3. Now put 1 tsp oil on your fingers and start kneading. Bring the dough together and form a soft dough.*see notes.

  4. Now with the rest of 1 tsp oil smear it all over the bowl and the dough.

  5. Cover it with a wet tea towel and leave it aside for 90 mins somehwere warm.

  6. After 90 mins the dough should be doubled. Punch down the dough. Knead once again.

  7. Till the time you are ready to use the dough again keep it covered with a wet towel.

  8. Now divide the dough into 6 equal balls.

  9. Take one ball and with your hands or with the help of a riolling pin flaten to make pizza base.

  10. For a thin crust pizza you need to roll thinly and for a thick crust pizza roll thickly and leave it aside for 15 mins after rolling.

  11. Now once your pizza base is rolled transfer onto a baking sheet that is oiled well.

  12. Top with pizza souce, veggies and cheese(remember less is more).

  13. Bake at 190C for 12-15 mins untill you see the rusts turning brown and the middle cooked well.

  14. The pizza with the cheese will be bubblig hot. Wait for 2-3 mins before having it.

  15. Enjoy homemade wholewheat pizza.

Recipe Notes

Tips for the perfect pizza base at home-

  1. Pizza dough should not be very stiff like an atta dough. It needs to be soft and very loose in order to make a soft and fluffy pizza.
  2. If 1.5 cup water is not enough you can add more water to make a soft dough.
  3. If yeast is not fresh it may not activate. Always use fresh yeast. I like to use Instant yeast as its results are more fool proof than active dry yeast and it does not give that yeast like smell after baking.
  4. Add pizza toppings less. Remember less is more.
  5. Same goes for cheese. Cheese needs to be just enough nut not over. 
  6. For pizza cheese i have used a blend or mozzarella and cheddar.

 

Whole wheat pizza dough

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11 Proven Health Benefits of Eating Chocolate Everyday

beetee's dark chocolate

Do you like to nibble on a piece of chocolate after your meals or just as a sweet treat here and there? Fret not!! Eating chocolate can be healthy too. Don’t believe me; read along.

Chocolate is made from Tropical Theobroma cacao tree seed. If you were to look at this seed of cacao you wouldn’t even believe it’s the base of the chocolate that we eat. Cacao is the raw bean that is bitter in itself and need to be fermented and processed into making chocolate.

It’s safe to say that the cacao seeds go through various transformations to reach the face of chocolate we so love.

Cacao is also packed with numerous antioxidants and anti inflammatory properties that makes it even healthier than green tea or red wine.

There are a few brand who make chocolate the right way. And BEE TEE’S MELT is the brand to try!

Beetee's Artesian Chocolate

To start with the raw beans are washed and fermented in wooded crates with banana leaves. After that they are completely dried and roasted until you get the perfect roasted chocolaty aroma.

These are the made into little cacao nibs and grounded. What you get is a liquid chocolate with cacao butter still intact in it. So when you eat the chocolate you can taste the silkiness and richness. Good quality chocolate has 40% to 50% cocoa butter. And a bar of chocolate has anywhere from 30% to 70% cacao beans + cacao butter.

What makes this chocolate different from others is the sweetener they use. They use coconut sugar, palm sugar, brown sugar. They even have a vegan chocolate with coconut milk and coconut sugar.

BeeTee’s Melt is a Gluten free, Soy free, Refined sugar free, Preservative free Chocolates and Hydrogenated oil and Palm oil free Nut Butter.

My favorite out of their range is the 72% dark chocolate with palm sugar.

beetees dark chocolate

Consuming a little bit of chocolate on a regular basis is actually good for you.

So here are 11 proven health benefits of eating chocolate everyday-

  1. The polyphenol content in chocolate helps in lowering blood pressure.
  2. Dark chocolate contains phytonutrients called flavonoids, which are plant chemicals that act as antioxidants and may play a role in few types of cancer prevention and heart health.
  3. Dark chocolate may prevent heart disease and lower the risk of stroke.
  4. It helps improve cognition, prevent memory loss and better the mood
  5. Chocolate is good for your gut and may help with weight loss.
  6. Could improve blood sugar levels and prevent the risk of diabetes
  7. Chocolate is also known to increase good cholesterol (HDL) and reduce bad cholesterol (LDL).
  8. The antioxidant and anti inflammatory properties of chocolate makes it nutritious and not to mention a delicious treat.
  9. The flavanols can protect against sun damage, improve blood flow to the skin and increase skin density and hydration.
  10. Eating chocolate will instantly better your mood due to the increased level of serotonin in your brain.
  11. The antioxidants in chocolate will fight toxins and free radicals in your body that can cause damage to skin cells. So eating chocolate can also beneficial for its anti ageing properties.

Conclusion

Eating small amount of chocolate (around 5 to 10 grams) daily can actually be beneficial for you in the long run. However ensure that you eat chocolate that has a high content of cocoa atleast 50% and above.

The opinions, ideas, views expressed in this article is solely my experience based in hope to help my readers. Kindly excercise caution and self judgment.

If you like this post please like & share it and leave your valuable comments. You can follow my Facebook page where I share lots more. If you wish to replicate this post please link back with due credits.

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12 Things To Expect After Giving Birth,The first 6 weeks

A lot of things are happening to your body during child birth. But it does not stop there. After child birth a women is still experiencing major changes. It can be physical, emotional or both.

Your body had to work hard to keep the baby safe and healthy inside and now that the baby is born it need to go back to its original state and that will require some changes; again!

Things To Expect After Giving Birth

Most changes in body or any discomforts are normal and likely temporary and as you settle in your new role of a mother and time passes your body heals and feels better.

But some changes may be a bit more permanent or could take more than 6 weeks to be better.

Lets see 12 things to expect after giving birth-

  1. Vaginal Discharge- After you give birth your body gets rid of any blood or tissue that was in your uterus. This is called vaginal discharge or lochia. For the first few days you will bleed as if you are having a very heavy period. And gradually the bleeding/discharge will slow down. It can take a few weeks so stock up on your pad and change pad as per your discharge flow.
  2. Milk Coming- Milk coming simply means that your breast is full of milk to support breast feeding. Before that your breasts will produce colostrum, initial milk that will be enough to feed your baby for the first few days. If you are worried for low milk supply feed your baby from day 1 even if your milk has not come yet.
  3. Breast Engorgement- Once your milk comes in be prepared to feel full, sore and sensitive if you delay in feeding your baby. Breast will be engorged when they are filled with milk. To stop this; feed your baby at regular interval or pump to remove milk from breast. If you do not plan to feed your baby it may take 10-15 days for the milk to stop coming/stop after you stop/gradually stop breast feeding.
  4. After delivery pains- As intense the labour pain and delivery process are there is a fair bit of pain left to experience. As your uterus shrinks back to its original size you will experience cramps and after pains(period like crams) after giving birth. However this will be just for a few days until your uterus is back to its original size.
  5. Paining nipples- If you are breastfeeding nipple pain is a common problem especially if you have cracked nipples. The excessive load of feeding, bad position when breastfeeding or a bad latch anything can cause nipple cracks and hence pain.
  6. Overall swelling- Lots of women have swelling in their hands, feet and face. And it may not go when you give birth. You can still feel swollen up significantly after birth up to 6 months. To feel better put your feet up when you can, drink lots of water, eat more fiber rich food and rest well.
  7. Hemorrhoid- They are painful and swollen veins in and around anus which can bleed or hurt even during pregnancy or after giving birth. All the pushing while giving birth is traumatizing for your pelvis. Best way to avoid hemorrhoids is to not get constipated, drink lots of water and eat fiber rich food.
  8. Excessive sweating- All the hormonal changes in your body makes you sweat even more. Plus since you will be breastfeeding its body’s way to produce more scent for baby to be able to recognise you.
  9. Knee Pain, feeling tired- The pushing during labour can do some damage to your knees and make you excessively tired after birth. Good news is that its a matter of few weeks and you will feel perfectly normal. Its best to take it easy after birth, rest as much as you can, ask for help if you need it and just take care in general. Start workout after a nod from your doctor.
  10. Postpartum blues- Its not uncommon to feel overwhelmed with the whole labour and delivery process. Not to mention the constant breastfeeding, caring for a new born. It can make you feel down. Its nothing to worry as long as you feel better with each passing day as you settle into your routine with your new born. Talk your doctor, husband and friends about it and seek help if needed.
  11. Low sex drive- In the rush of delivery and talking care for the new born your libido can take a down turn and sex may not be on your mind for a while. But don’t forget to give your partner time, be intimate even if not sexually.
  12. Perineum discomfort- Its the area between your vagina and the rectum. To give birth the skin stretches between this area and even tear to help baby’s head to come out and deliver. After birth your doctor will asses your tear and decide if stitches are needed or not. Any ways you will have discomfort, swelling down there. Its difficult to sit for long hours to breast feed. To heal better keep the area clean and dry, take sitz bath regularly for at least 13 days and apply any ointment if needed.

READ- Breastfeeding Basics For A New Mom

The opinions, ideas, views expressed in this article is solely my experience based in hope to help my readers. Kindly excercise caution and self judgment.

If you like this post please like & share it and leave your valuable comments. You can follow my Facebook page where I share lots more. If you wish to replicate this post please link back with due credits.

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This post may contains affiliate links, if you choose to buy anything by clicking on it will help me earn a small commission at no extra cost to you.