How To Cook The Best Collard Greens

Outside the South, few people have adopted this healthy, strapping leafy green into their cooking collection. We’ve found very few recipes aside from the traditional southern “mess of greens”: 1-3 hours of cooking ample quantities of collard greens in a large pot of water flavored with smoked ham or ham hock. Not a undertaking geared to busy people looking for a quick greens side dish for a dinner meal. Luckily, there are quick, easy, and low-fat ways to cook collards that taste great, too.
Find some smooth, green leaves without any yellowing or insect holes. Avoid wilted greens; they have dissipated some flavor and vitality. Try to find young or small collard leaves. They will be more tender than large leaves.
Nutritionally, collards are a goldmine. According to the USDA Compensation of Foods, collard greens surpass broccoli, spinach, and mustard greens in nutritional value. A cruciferous, cancer-fighting vegetable along with kale and broccoli, collard greens are low in calories, high in fiber, and rich in betacarotene, vitamin C, calcium, and B vitamins.
Depending on the preparation, collards can have a mil, likable taste though not as sweet as kale. There’s no bitterness to them. We asked a longtime South Carolina collards grower to describe the taste of collards, and she had a hard time. “Hmm,” she said. “I don’t know; just say they taste good.”
We find collard greens taste too grassy to eat raw in a salad. Under cooking can also produce a grassy taste. Collard greens taste great simply prepared with olive oil and onions, leeks, or garlic. Strong flavorings such as hot pepper, ginger, curry vinegar, hot sauce, and bacon also enhance the flavor. Slivered collard greens taste good in many soups and bean stews.
What is the best way to turn out delicious collard green? Surprisingly, not be steaming. We have found, through comparison tests, that steamed collard greens are hard to chew and almost unpalatable. Boiling them in a large pot of water, southern style turns out a limp mass of mild-tasting greens that have lost distinctive flavor. It is also time-consuming and makes for a greater loss of nutrients.
The method we use is quick-cooking in a small amount of water as a preliminary step before sauting. Bring about 2 cups of water to a boil in a skillet large enough for the greens to spread out. Add the chopped greens to the boiling water, cover, and cook on high “fast and furiously” for 8-10 minutes. Cooking greens quickly preserves nutrients, color, and taste. The cooked greens can then be drained (save the broth!) and sauted in a little oil with other vegetables and flavorings. The cooking broth is a delicious, nutritious beverage to enjoy while you finish your preparations.
Alternatively, you can saut the collards. These greens may bechewier and stronger tasting than precooked collards, but slightly quicker to cook. Start with onions or leeks and garlic in a small amount of oil. Add the sliced collards and enough water to keep the greens from sticking to the pan and burning about cup per bunch. Cook the greens for the same amount of time, up to 10 minutes. This idea saves the step of precooking.

Morgan Perry has 1 articles online

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foods rich in calcium

Health benefits with fruits

For any
person to be able to take it easy for the fullest, it is very important
maintain fitness and general health. 

Are you aware even when you eat fruits you are able to become healthy?

contain carbohydrates plus a little bit of protein, and intensely
little fat. Carbohydrates and fats include the primary sources of energy
(calories) within the diet. Calories in fruits come mostly from simple
carbohydrates; that’s, sugars for instance fructose, sucrose and
glucose. Most fruits don’t have a great deal of calories. Consume juicy
fruits like grapes, melons, pears, plums, grapefruit, oranges,
pomegranates, pineapple, figs, dates and apples. These food types are
brimmed with antioxidants, promote efficient digestion, and help remove
impurities out of your body and are healthy on your skin and body.

give energy to bodies we will use during the day. Additionally, they
provide several nutrients that make us stronger and active. Fruits lower
cholesterol levels they do not contain high amounts of fats.

are already touted because the cure for the host of serious medical
problems including urinary infections, diabetes, high-cholesterol to
Alzheimer’s and cancer.

An apple a day keeps the doctor away, we
have heard this a lot many times, Apple is a cholesterol and devoid of
fat fruit full of lots of vitamins and nutrients. Apple juice is
delicious. It contains healthy levels of Vitamin C and is particularly
an organic source of niacin, phosphorus, magnesium, potassium and
calcium. You will also find high amounts of antioxidants and apple keeps
you faraway from heart diseases.

Banana contains three natural
sugars – sucrose, fructose and glucose – joined with fibre. It gives an
instantaneous, sustained and substantial boost of your energy. It may
also help overcome or prevent an important variety of illnesses and
scenarios so that it is a must to add to your daily diet.

have calories for body energy and contain an ideal balance of vitamins,
minerals, antioxidants and water, which alone might suffice allow you
to reside for ten days without eating everything else. Grapes may also
be consisting of enzymes that strengthen your defense mechanisms,
destroying germs and bacteria that lodge in your intestines which enable
it to easily absorb nutrients out of your diet.

Melon, with
common selection of it called the cantaloupe. Melons has high water
content, consumption of it really is definitely refreshing at once
filling. Additionally it is very low in calories, with only 35 calories
for every 100g. 

Orange is renowned for its vitamin C content.
Ascorbic acid is known antioxidant agent that protects the body from
harmful free radicals that invades your body. This nutrient are in
charge of skin maintenance, respiratory health, strengthen disease
fighting capability and many more.

Strawberries are nutritious,
and ideally must be an integral part of everyone’s daily diet. They
contain significant amounts of phytonutrients and antioxidants, which
fight poisons. These antioxidant properties are thought to be connected
to why the strawberry bright red.

Galena Karsson, a general practitioner, is also an acclaimed writer famous for her tips on men’s impotency. Her articles on various ED medications such Generic Viagra and Kamagra have helped many to lead a normal life again.

Weight Loss and Diet – 7 Ways to Save Money While Eating Healthy Food

When considering what food to eat, whether on a weight-loss program or not, we frequently think of the matter of cost. Healthy food can sometimes seem to be expensive. A walk through the produce aisles can at times convince us that lots of tasty and healthy items may stretch our budgets. People often assume that eating healthy foods costs more money. In reality, with a little menu planning and some basic cooking skills, it can be affordable. We also save the money we pay at the register for convenience; the more processing a product has had, the more costly it usually becomes. Here are some suggestions to help you save money on your weekly groceries while making healthy choices.

1. Plan your menus. Take 15-20 minutes each week to plan several dinners. Use the weekly sales flier to guide you in your selections, and make a list and stick to it. Avoid impulse buying when you get to the store, to prevent extra expense and unnecessary purchases.

2. Coupons can help. They can save you as much as $10 to $20 on your groceries. Be sure to cut out ONLY the coupons for food you would normally buy. Otherwise, you will be tempted to pick up this and that and the other thing because it looks like good deal. You may spend more money and sabotage your careful planning as well.

3. Compare unit prices. This tells you how much you will spend per ounce or pound or whatever unit is being used. One thing to keep in mind, however, is whether the store brand in reality is a better buy. For example, if the store brand contains extra liquid instead of the vegetables you are buying, then a brand-name product may be a much better buy. Once you try them, you will know which is really the better value. Buy only what you will use or can store. Throwing away unusable perishables or other food is not a savings, no matter how great the price was.

4. Don’t shop when you are hungry. You will be tempted to buy more food than if you shop after you have eaten. Stay away from those empty calorie foods such as chips, cookies, sodas, cakes, and candy. They tend to be especially tempting if you are hungry. Also, take a look at the prices. Often a large bag of potato chips is the same as or a greater price than a bag of baby carrots. A 12-pack of soda is often more expensive than a gallon of skim milk. Go for the good stuff!

5. Leftovers can become a meal. Use them for one dinner each week and save a few dollars. Oh, and you won’t have to cook on that night, either! If you have leftovers that can go into a soup pot, you can make a wonderful “new” meal with them. Soup and salad can be a tasty, healthy, and filling combo.

6. Do you need individual servings to take to work or send to school with the kids? Don’t spend your money on the individually packed snack foods. They may be convenient, but they are also costly. Plan ahead if you need snacks to go. For example, buy a large box of crackers and package them individually. You can use travel cups for drinks and plastic baggies for many kinds of snacks. Fruit and berries as well as cut up vegetables pack well in baggies or in small screw-cap plastic containers which can be washed and reused again and again.

7. Meat is not necessary at every meal. Substitute beans or eggs for meat from time to time. Beans and rice or an omelet or homemade soups or other vegetarian dishes can be healthy alternatives and a nice change of taste for the pallet. To save money, you can cut up your own vegetables or buy frozen or low-sodium canned vegetables when local or less expensive fresh produce is not available. You can also buy and freeze many fresh vegetables and fruits when they are in season, if you have freezer space in which to store them.

Using these tips can help you save money and enjoy good eating all year around. Soon, the delicious flavors of fresh fruits and vegetables and fresh-cooked foods will probably make you wonder why you thought you preferred those chips and cookies in the first place. Plus, eating good food is a very important part of your weight loss and fitness program. Here’s to great food and good health!

Mary Simpson has 1 articles online

To learn how to lose weight using proven, tried, and tested methods, please visit Mary Simpson has been interested in health and fitness since her early twenties.

The Benefits Of Healthy Living

Certainly some of the advantages of healthy living are extremely obvious.  Doing those things that can help to keep you healthy definitely pay off especially in the areas of longevity and being able to get more living out of each and every day.  For some, unfortunately health just isn’t attainable as many people are born with health issues or develop them as a result to something that’s totally outside of their control.  Even the ill, however, can benefit from living a healthy lifestyle and the better you eat and the more you exercise the better your overall health will be no matter what your circumstances.

Some of the things that you can do to help keep yourself healthy are things that are pretty straightforward to carry out.  Take exercising for 30 minutes a day.  This is something that everyone can pretty much do to their own extent and something as basic as taking a brisk walk everyday can help improve heart and lung function and can also help to combat depression.  Using this as a starting point, there are certainly a few other factors which you can improve upon as well.

Stress is one of the largest issues that plague those who are ill and as a result you will want to find a way to minimize and eliminate your stress.  it really is very harmful to your overall health and you will find that things such as counseling, exercise, meditation, yoga, and alternatives such as massage can help you to reduce and eliminate your stress levels and help you to manage your daily life more easily.

Eating better will help to control your weight and will give you a great deal more energy and when combined with getting a good night’s rest each night can really help to provide you clarity of mind and body.  This will help you to live a healthier and happier life.  Eating more natural foods and less processed ones you will begin to reap the health benefits right away.

Health insurance and regular health care should also be things on your list for a healthier lifestyle.  By having regular screenings you will be able to identify health issues early on which can help you to avoid a health crisis down the road.  Many health issues when monitored and addressed early on can be addressed for a happier and healthier life.

These issues may seem small but they can have a huge impact in the quality of the life that you are living.  Being able to implement these slight changes in your life can make a big overall difference.

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you are searching for.

Celebrate Burger Month by Making Your Own Healthy Burgers

I don’t know if you just took an awesome hot dog as something delicious or just a crappy burger to have something for lunch. But in fairness, hearing the sound of burgers makes me amazingly hungry every time. Perhaps its true, burgers are among the most satisfying foods that we can have anytime. No wonder it is celebrated every month of May to commemorate an appetizing variation of the meat sandwich that we all love. If you are lying low on burgers, maybe indulging yourself on this occasion for a month doesn’t make you feel any guilt.

I like my burger well-done less mayonnaise but lots and lots of cheese. What about you? We see burgers rare while others go well-done, like mine. In burger stations, you’ll see burgers piled high with crisp toppings and served on warm buns. In school canteens, they are made for plain sandwich filling. In addition to the classic ground beef burgers, there are other meats used to form patties appropriate for grilling.

For everyone’s information, buffalo burgers are considered healthier than any other burgers. Although buffalo meat is a lot expensive that the more commercial ground beef, this meat preserve the likable meaty flavor of ground beef. This is measured in general considering buffalo meat as coming from a more natural, more country farming methods, compared to its beef counterpart.

People today have started to be aware of healthier eating styles with the shift of attention to seafood and leaner chicken and turkey burgers as healthier than all ground beef. Others make vegetable-based burgers which are favored by vegetarians and people reducing red meat from their diets. Despite the notion of beef burgers as unhealthy, the burger business has expanded ways of delivering burgers closer to consumers by selling juicy burgers of any type that come in big floppy buns with a good amount of tomatoes and lettuce and mayonnaise along with sweet potato French fries. This leads to the practice of preferring foods that are high in fat and sugar.

Typically, a burger starts with high-fat ground beef dressed with mostly fatty toppings that seems to encourage higher fat content. Sounds yummy but its the not so healthy thing. Here is where your family needs your resourcefulness by making your own healthy burgers. One rule is on how you cook it. If it’s all ground beef deep-fried or grilled with oil or butter, then it is not the real healthy thing. If it is steamed, grilled or fried with minimal fat, or if it is a vegetable-based burger, then you’re heading the right way.

Burgers are real delicious that doesn’t have to be branded unhealthy. Why not make it a part of a hearty and healthy diet as well? If the juiciest burgers tend to be high in fat, you can make a delicious burger that is low in fat. Even if there seem to be no substitute for beef patty, starting with lean beef, poultry and even bison, can be the most perfect way for a lower-calorie alternative. Other than that, lean beef is loaded with vital nutrients, including high quality protein, vitamin B-12, selenium, phosphorus, niacin, iron, zinc and more. Just great for every family.

The only person who can start this is you. Ready?

Terry Retter has 1 articles online

Terry Retter Your Smart Kitchen. The online location for quality cookware, bakeware, cutlery, appliances and related kitchenware at very reasonable prices specializing in Chasseur, Paderno, Woll, Romertopf, Fissler, Bosch, Cloer and other leading brands. Sign in for the Chef Wannabee Newsletter and join our May special coupons and discounts that you can avail.

Healthy Diet Tips

The mainstream seesaw of dieting is a moneymaker that doesn’t address real health issues and concerns.

One of the best things you can do for your body is eat at least twelve servings of fresh, organic fruits and vegetables every single day. These foods are packed with the things that our bodies need; natural, non-synthetic source of Vitamins A,B, C, and E, disease fighting antioxidants, minerals like potassium, calcium, phosphorous, and copper.

These days too many Americans get their vitamins from synthetic sources that are isolated and chemically induced. The best way to get this nutrition is from the good earth, directly from the source, from fruits and vegetables.

If eating that many vegetables seems overwhelming, just think about the colors. Get your blue and purples like blueberries and plums to reduce the risk of cancer and protect your urinary tract. Eat green vegetables like broccoli and celery to protect your bones, teeth and eyes. Consume your whites like mushrooms and onions for healthy heart function. Eat foods like oranges and carrots to boost your immune system from the yellow and orange fruits and vegetables. Finally, get your reds from foods like apples and beets for memory function and heart health.

All of these fruits and vegetables have healing qualities and you’ll feel the difference. If you can’t eat this much or don’t have the time, drink juices made from a vegetable juicer, a great way to get the nutrients you need.

In addition to eating fruits and vegetables, cut down on saturated fats from processed foods and switch to unsaturated fats from nuts like almonds and vegetables including avocado. In general however, cut down on fat in your life and your heart and body will thank you for it. Speaking of processed food, begin to rid yourself of any processed foods. And of course, drink water so that you are flushing the toxins out your system and staying hydrated.

Use these healthy diet tips as a general guide to healthy eating, not fad dieting.

Alan LeStourgeon along with his wife Jean run the web site where they explore what it means to eat a healthy diet, have a healthy home and live a healthier life.

How important it is to include nutrient supplements in your diet?

The Nutritional supplements are known to
have been fulfilling the gap in your unbalanced diet, though, these
days’ people consume these supplements to have a proper build and
maintain the workout regimes. The supplements can be taken by anybody
right from an infant to the elderly people, but the main concern is that
they have to be taken in recommended dosage only or else they can prove
to be fatal.

When we compare vitamins are also of equal importance when a balanced diet is talked of. The vitamin supplements can be taken in the form of all the leafy vegetables, fruits and other natural options like fish oil and cod liver oil.
The supplement will be replacement for the lack of the amount of
vitamins in our organization and system. Vitamins help in the
development of tissue and bone, also help convert carbohydrates and fat
into energy prove as a support to control metabolism in the body. They
help to boost and strengthen your immune system. Vitamins are also
useful for us to get rid of the toxins from your body. The supplements
help you to have the best of your health and reduce the risk of

The various vitamins serve their purposes. Vitamin A
supplement helps you to have healthy skin and glossy hair, good vision,
growth, and development. It prevents dry, flaky skin and reduces lines
and wrinkles giving you a skin which you can’t get your hands away from.
This vitamin contributes to the growth of white blood cells, destroying
bacteria. Vitamin C supplement maintain your oral health keeping your
gums and teeth healthy, your body absorb iron with its help healing the
wounds faster. Vitamin D, supplement with calcium and helps in building
strong bones. Vitamin E supplement reduces the symptoms of menopause.
 Lastly Vitamin E helps in preventing arteries from being clogged. All
these vitamins are well taken with the consumption of the Cod liver oil. The oil can create wonders for you, if taken in proper quantity.

Every good thing has to have a contradicting factor. Here too, the intake of vitamin and Nutritional supplement
is argued upon. These taken in excess can cause danger to your health
but if kept in check then take care of your health. Today, the
nutritional supplements are available in a variety of forms including
liquid, capsules, pills, and teas, some are still grown at home in the
form of herbs and aren’t as popular as those that are supplied
commercially. But eventually, nutritional supplements are beneficial for
many things, readily available at your nearest nutrition store, or
online. Variety of different supplements for you to choose from,
providing you with everything you need to get the right amount of
nutrients and vitamins.  If your everyday diet is lacking the important
nutrients, vitamins, and minerals that your body requires – you should
consider taking the nutritional supplements.

Experienced to solve health related issues & problems, Expert dietitian & dietary, nutritional & vitamin supplement consultants for more information visit here:

Healthy Habits

Incorporate these HEALTHY HABITS in your life

Following healthy habits can statistically increase your lifespan by up to 11 years! That’s a lot of extra time to get to live, and you can add it to your life by following a few simple habits:

1. Never skip your breakfast. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Still, many of us skip it thinking that it will help us shed pounds. When you skip breakfast your blood sugar levels, as well as other nutrient levels drop, depriving you of the required nutrition and energy for the rest of the day. Breakfast eaters have a more positive attitude toward school and work, and they perform better. 2. Bite into something good. Eat lots of fruits and vegetables. Fruits are cool and juicy, so they get you the water you need to stay hydrated and they also provide the vitamins and nutrients that fat-free snack foods don’t. They’re good and they taste sweet – and some contain antioxidants that help prevent aging.

3. Eat regular meals. Skipping meals can lead to out-of-control hunger, often resulting in overeating. When you’re very hungry, it’s also tempting to forget about good nutrition. Snacking between meals can help curb hunger, but don’t eat so much that your snack becomes an entire meal.

4. Quit smoking. Now, studies show that quitting smoking, you can restore your heart function back to that of a non-smoker within a few years. You’ll breathe easier, cut down your chances for heart disease, cancer, and more. But you knew that, right? Also, if you’re not a smoker, stay away from those who do. Secondhand smoke is a major killer – don’t be afraid to tell people gently that you’d prefer it if they didn’t smoke around you.

5. Exercise Daily! You don’t have to be a professional athlete – just make time for 15-20 minutes of exercise daily. Take a walk, dance crazily to music, go for a jog, play volleyball on the beach, whatever it takes to get your heart pumping for a little while.

6. Get your sleep. Getting at least 8 hours of sleep every night can extend your life. Your body has time to recharge every night so it’s fresh and ready to face the onslaught of the next day.

7. Every day, devote a little time for yourserlf. Take some time out of your “busy” schedule. First, eliminate all forms of intrusion. Then close your eyes, breathe deeply and let your thoughts float downstream like a log carried by the river. You can practice meditation or relax in a hot bath with aromatherapy. When a thought comes up, just watch it float away.

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Educational guide to vitamins, minerals, amino acids and herbs for a healthier life – If you wish to reproduce the above article you are welcome to do so, provided the article is reproduced in its entirety, including this resource box and LIVE link to our website.

The difference between Basic and Gourmet Cooking

How does Basic Cooking differ from Gourmet Cooking?

Basic Cook:

I think the majority of us are basic cooks. In my opinion, being a basic cook means that the meals are planned, time consuming and tasteful. Basic cooks have tried and tested meals that suit their individual/family’s taste. Basic cooks know what they like to eat and approximately how long it will take to prepare those meals. With our busy life-styles basic cooks want their family’s well feed with healthy well balanced meals. Every family has his/her favorite dishes and will proudly claim that the recipes for those favorites are family secrets. Generally, people will go to restaurant for a gourmet meal. A gourmet restaurant serves the highest quality food. With a sense of adventure you can learn how to cook gourmet meals at home.

Gourmet Cooking:

Epicure is a connoisseur meaning having an acquired refined and discriminating taste in foods and wines. An old French alteration (influenced by gourmand, glutton) of gourmand. Gourmet meals involves high-quality ingredients with skilled preparation. Gourmet cooking involves only high quality and fresh ingredients. Let us compare. In basic cook if a recipe calls for garlic usually powdered garlic is used. With gourmet cooking only fresh chopped garlic is used. Consider if herbs are called for shop locally or consider growing your own. Having your own herbal garden saves money and make a world of difference in the taste of your gourmet experience. Not only do are herbs taste bud delights but they carry health benefits. In basic cooking we may defrost meat or use frozen vegetables. Not in gourmet cooking ONLY fresh. Gourmet chefs consider their meals works of art. There is a balance between colors and texture. Cooking time is important because it effects color and texture.

Let us compare a Basic Cook Salad to a Gourmet Salad:

Basic salad would consist:

-Iceberg lettuce 1/2 (shredded)

-1 garden tomato

-Shredded carrots (2)

-Green onions (4)

-½ chopped cucumber

-Choose of dressing

Gourmet Salad:

Tropical Fruit Salad with Mint – serves 8

1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
2 (10 ounce) packages mixed greens
4 thinly sliced chicken deli meat, chopped
1 tomato, chopped
1/4 tsp onion powder
3 dashes garlic powder
1 pinch ground black pepper
2 pinches salt
3 tbsp balsamic vinaigrette salad dressing

Saute onion and bell pepper until soft; set aside to cool.
In a large salad bowl, combine the onion, pepper, salad greens, deli meat and tomato. Sprinkle with the onion powder, garlic powder, black pepper and salt. Toss to mix.
Pour on enough salad dressing or vinegar to coat, toss again and serve.

Recipe provided by: free-gourmet-recipes

I am not suggesting cooking only basic or gourmet. Consider alternating between basis and gourmet cooking. Gourmet cooking is more time consuming and expensive than basic cooking. My comfort level was basic cooking but after my initial trial and error period gourmet cooking became quick and easy. The advantages are greater taste and quality. Compare the costs of dining at a gourmet restaurant and consider the money saved learning how to cook gourmet at home. Your family and friends will take pleasure in in your new gourmet meals.

Food and recipe writer.

Believe in what you preach: tips on healthy food

How wise stories and educational fairy tales on healthy food can help one to heal – a true story about carrot juice and eyesight.

It seems that the only times when we pay attention to our mental and physical health are when our bodies cannot cope with the burdens, stresses and strains of life. These seem to harass us almost all of the time and it is at these times when we draw on the virtues of nature to provide us with miraculous cures. Just think though, if we were to acquaint ourselves with the wonderful qualities of nature early on in our childhood, then we may not come up against so many problems later in life.

After my hard and pressurising working-week I was so tired that I couldn’t sleep properly. The following day I could not find my glasses. I needed them urgently to write a letter but I could not find them anywhere. Imagine my delight when I suddenly found that I could write without my glasses! What a miracle! I was utterly bemused by this for ages but then came to realise that this marvellous discovery was the result of my drinking a glass of fresh carrot juice every day.

Up to that point, I had taken several different supplements and vitamins to improve my eyesight but they didn’t seem to make much of a difference. Could it be that the fresh carrot juice that I drank every morning had really provided a cure? I scolded myself, ‘You tell everybody about healthy benefits of fruits and vegetables. You wrote so many fairy tales, stories and legends about the miracles of carrots and yet you can’t believe in this miracle!’ One day, teachers from a school in Russia sent us a letter telling us about how they had incorporated our fairytales into their children’s lessons. They had brought a large pumpkin along to the lessons and told the children that ‘Auntie Pumpkin’ ruled the vegetable kingdom as she was the largest and most caring vegetable on the planet. They then told the children about the miracles that the green-eyed Auntie Pumpkin could make in her splendid orange dress; how she could cure painful joints and strengthen bones and bowels.

It wasn’t long before parents started to complain. One mother moaned: ‘My daughter won’t let her father relax. He loves to lie down in front of the television after work but she keeps pulling at his sleeves to come into the kitchen and eat pumpkin. She was repeating all evening, ‘Papa, now I know why you are always so tired. It is because you don’t eat pumpkin. It is pumpkin which gives strenghth and energy!’

‘My son keeps pestering me about pumpkins. Every day he wants to have it for dinner. He keeps saying, ‘I don’t want my teeth to turn bad.’In the past he would never eat pumpkin,’ exclaimed another mother.

Here, we have evidence of what just one fairytale can do – it can make a profound and miraculous impression on children.

One day, I visited a school at lunchtime. The cooks were giving carrot salad to the children. When I saw how one boy pushed away his plate of salad with hatred in his eyes, I asked him, ‘Do you know why gnomes like carrots more than gold?’ At that point, all conversations in the dining hall stopped and all eyes turned to me. ‘They really do like carrots more than gold.’ I said again. ‘In many countries they tell stories about how gnomes trade lumps of gold with woodcutters in exchange for delicious carrots.’ – This is because there is vitamin A in carrots which helps people to grow big and strong. Gnomes grow very slowly so vitamins that can help them to grow quicker are more valuable to them that all the jewels on the earth. The vitamins in carrots can also help you to see perfectly. The light underground is very bad so gnomes’ eyes suffer. Fresh carrot is a wonderful cure for them. If you want to see a gnome you should always go into the forest with some carrots.

After dinner, the school’s cook told the teacher that everyone wanted extra helpings of carrot salad. ‘They’re probably up to some kind of mischief. We always have loads of salad left over.’ The cook said.

It is strange but very often we receive letters from students from different colleges and schools who are writing essays and reports on healthy food and ask if we will allow them to use our illustrations of talking strawberries and playful bananas!

Our message to all: Dear friends, our fruits and vegetables do not only talk and play in our illustrations. They also talk and play in the fairytales and stories which tell us of their wonderful secrets. These wonderful gifts of nature will live in our hearts forever. All we must do is learn about their miraculous qualities and make use of them in our everyday lives.

Lilia is an educator and follower of a healthy life-style. She loves to share healthy recipes for kids and and true testimonial stories from lives of health-conscious people at => Books on healthy food for kids