Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Six Tips For Choosing The Best Slimming Tea

For many of us the New Year means weight loss resolutions, which is why the best slimming tea might be an important aid to your weight loss plans.

Let me explain why tea is a good choice to help you lose weight and which ones are the best.

1. Drink your tea pure

First of all, how you actually drink it is important. In Britain, for example, many people add milk, if not milk and sugar to their favorite cuppa. You will not be able to lose weight this way. You need to take your tea pure - whatever sort you prefer. You just need the leaves and hot/boiling water. That's it. If you prefer to drink it cold then let it cool and add ice. I tend to put the cooled down contents of the teapot in a glass jug and leave it in the refrigerator so I can simply pour when I need it. You can add lemon or maybe a slice of orange, but that's it.

2. Sip it slowly

Sipping your tea throughout the day is also a good idea. Much better than consuming it in gulps. To encourage this, use small cups instead of a large mug. In fact drinking small cups throughout the day may help you feel fuller and can be an aid to digestion if drunk during meal times. If you do this, there will not be any need for you to resort to unhealthy drinks which are usually laden with unwanted calories and this includes alcoholic beverages.

3. Drink Water Too

If you choose black, green or Oolong/WuLong, these come from the tea plant and contain caffeine so you should consider this. Although caffeine found here is better absorbed by the body than coffee, it would be a good suggestion to also drink lots of water. For example, it is often a custom in some other countries to serve coffee with a glass of water due to coffee actually taking fluid from our bodies. Unfortunately this isn't the case in North America. Herbal teas, for example, do not contain caffeine so they are not only good for us but do not have a dehydrating effect.

A healthy way to lose weight is to hydrate our bodies and help our organs (particularly the liver) process the foods and drink we consume on a daily basis. Drinking lots of water and herbal teas can do this. If we are overweight, our cells are literally clogged with fat and this needs to be 'washed out'. This drink can help with this process and get the fat moving from our bodies.

4. The Weight Loss Benefits Of Green, WuLong or Oolong

There are many green tea weight loss products on the market, but also Wu Long, also called Oolong. as it has now been discovered that they have weight loss benefits too.

There are also many slimming tea products on the market. You can do some research online to find out which is the best slimming one for you. These teas are often blends therefore having more than one sort blended together.

5. The Herbal Weight Loss Wonders

Certain herbal teas have also been known to have weight loss properties. Chamomile is not only good for you but helps your digestion to function better. Another bonus if you want to lose weight. Peppermint also aids digestion and is a very refreshing tea.

6. Mix It Up

It's a good plan to use several teas and not stick with just one. So stock up on a good green, Oolong and some herbal teas and then use them interchangeably. One afternoon you might want that cup of Oolong and Peppermint in the evening, for example.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Why Coffee Is So Good for Drinking And Healthy?

What's the one thing that helps most of us get through the first part of our day without looking like complete zombies; the thing that gives us that push we require every morning? Yes, that dispenser of energy, made from the second best brown-colored beans in the world - the best being chocolate beans of course - coffee! What's better is that some brands and coffee shops have even started giving out gift cards, to make purchasing coffee easier, faster and more convenient, leading to an even better start to the day.

Coffee contains several compounds that affect the chemistry of the human body. One of these compounds is the drug Caffeine, and it is known to act as a stimulant. This is the drug that awakens you and gives you the push in the morning after having coffee. There are other substances too, some of them currently unknown, that produce important hormones like adrenaline and cortisone. Some people prefer having decaffeinated coffee, also known as decaf. Decaf has no stimulants and the drinker drinks it just to enjoy the flavor of coffee. Apart from merely being an energy-boosting drink, coffee has some great health benefits too.

Cancer Protection. Earlier, coffee was linked to one of the causes of cancer, but recent research showed that coffee actually helps prevent cancer. Caffeic acid and Chlorogenic acid are two substances found in coffee that help fight cancer, since both nutrients possess anti-cancer properties.

Heart Disease Protection. Atherosclerosis is a condition in which hard plaques are formed around the walls of the arteries, which may prevent blood from getting to the heart. Coffee helps protect the heart as Caffeic acid helps prevent the chance of Atherosclerosis. The same acid also helps lower the levels of low density lipoprotein in the blood.

Diabetes Protection. Another effect of Caffeic acid is that it helps reduce the levels of glucose in the blood. At the same time, Chlorogenic acid subdues the release of stored glucose from the liver. Hence, keeping blood glucose levels low, coffee helps prevent Diabetes.

Improved Weight Loss.One of the body's ways of burning extra calories is Thermogenesis. Studies have shown that coffee has the tendency to significantly increase this process. In this way, coffee contributes to weight loss. However, if taken with extra sugar and cream, you will only be gaining extra calories.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Modern Value in Gourmet Coffee

Coffee is the second most traded commodity in the world, second only to oil. Coffee trading is more active than corn, wheat, pork belly and metal trading. In response to such heavy demand, the price of coffee continues to rise. Despite the rising cost, coffee still remains an incredible value for you and your family.

Coffee often seems expensive at first glance. In an attempt to find the highest priced coffee around, we found a roast from Yemen that retails at $48.95 per pound. The average price of gourmet coffee, however, was $18 per pound. Wow! These must be quite the roasts to qualify for such high price tags. Digging deeper, however, we learn that a cup of gourmet coffee is surprisingly less expensive than most popular beverages on the market today

Don't believe us? Following is the math to prove it. All estimates are based off of a standard 12-cup coffee-maker. The average coffee grind requires 1 rounded tablespoon of ground coffee per two cups of water. This equates to six rounded tablespoons of coffee per pot of coffee. According to there are approximately seventy-five tablespoons of ground coffee per pound of coffee, equating to roughly twelve full pots of coffee per pound.. Twelve pots of coffee equal 144 cups of wonderful brew. Considering waste and human error, we rounded this number down to a conservative 100 cups per pound of coffee. Referring back to the most expensive coffee we could find, the price of a single cup of coffee equates to only $0.49 per cup ($48.95 per pound/100 cups per pound =$0.49 per cup), while the average priced gourmet coffee computes to $0.18/cup ($18 per pound/100 cups per pound = $0.18 per cup). Let's now compare the cost of a serving of gourmet coffee to servings of other beverages. In the below examples, we compare a 12 ounce serving of coffee against 12 ounce servings of other drinks.

Beverage Unit Cost Per 12 ounce Serving

Gourmet Coffee: $0.27 per serving ($18.00 per pound, 66 servings per pound)

Whole Milk: $0.40 per serving ($4 per gallon, 10.67 servings per gallon)

Pepsi: $0.55 per serving ($3.33 per six pack, 6 servings per six pack)

Snapple Peach Tea: $0.67 per serving ($0.89 per bottle, 1.3 servings per bottle)

Budweiser Beer: $0.71 per serving ($17.00 per 24 pack, 24 servings per pack)

Note: For cost accuracy, we checked weekly grocery flyers and the internet for the lowest price on beverages and used those in the above computations. Clearly, a 12 oz cup of gourmet coffee is more affordable than many other popular beverages.

Who can drink coffee?

We often hear comments that, "Coffee is bad for children. It has too much caffeine and my kids want to add lots of sugar!"Stop! I have seen elementary school children drink Mountain Dew both before after school, or as soon as they can get to a convenience store. Did their parents check the ingredients of Mountain Dew or other sodas before allowing their child to buy that supercharged drink? Some parents pride themselves on only allowing their children to drink fruit drinks. These, however, can be laden with too much sugar or even worse, high fructose corn syrup. A cup of coffee, however, is full of both anti-oxidants and phytochemicals, and is often a healthier option than sports or fruit drinks.

Ways to Prepare Coffee

There are also many different ways to enjoy coffee. It is popular in Vietnamese culture to mix sweetened condensed milk with very dark coffee. The Arab culture has been known to mix cardamom in with their coffee. Try adding chocolate, caramel, mint, or any flavor that sounds good to your coffee. You can also buy flavored coffees. Don't like caffeine? Use decaffeinated coffee, and serve it hot or cold to your whole family at any time of day. Use stevia powder instead of artificial sweeteners to sweeten your coffee. Stevia is a natural sweetener that has no calories. You can also try dark brown sugar or evaporated cane juice in your coffee. Clearly, there are many ways to enjoy low-cost coffee at any time of day.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Why Healthy Tea For Pregnant Women?

Raspberry Leaf Tea is made from the leaves of the raspberry plant. This is a perennial shrub which can be found in many countries all over the world. The red raspberry plant is best known for its delicious red berries, but the leaves of this plant have some medicinal uses as well. The leaves of the red raspberry plant have been used, among other things, to help relieve irritations of the skin and also to ease soreness of the throat and mouth. Raspberry leaf, brewed as a tea, is also a safe tonic herb for pregnant and nursing women.

Raspberry leaf tea is very high in an assortment of nutrients which are very important during pregnancy. One of these nutrients, an alkaloid called fragrine, has been shown to strengthen and relax the muscles of the uterus. It helps with delivery and eases the labor process as well as benefits postpartum recovery. This tea has withstood the test of time, as it has been used by woman for these purposes historically.

Women can drink raspberry leaf tea throughout their pregnancies. This tea is delicious and one can drink it hot or cold, as iced tea. Raspberry Leaf contains many nutritious minerals and vitamins. It is a good source of vitamins A, B complex, vitamin C, and vitamin E. It contains minerals as well, such as calcium, potassium, iron and magnesium to name a few. These nutrients make it an excellent prevention and treatment for anemia and cramping in the muscles, primarily the leg muscles. It can be used to alleviate nausea brought on by morning sickness, and can help to prevent constipation.

This versatile tea is great to drink even after childbirth. It has nourishing and restorative qualities, and is helpful in recovery after having a baby. Its nutritional value is thought to be responsible for the enrichment and production of the mother's breast milk.

Raspberry Leaf tea can be bought as loose leaf tea, and also can be obtained in tea bags for convenience. You can buy this tea from health food stores and you can find it in online stores as well. Red Raspberry Leaf tastes very similar to regular black tea, and can be sweetened with stevia or a little organic cane sugar for a naturally sweetened and refreshing taste.

As always, if you have any questions or concerns about starting a new health regimen, it is advisable to consult with your physician.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Differences Between Coffee Ground by Burr Grind Method and Chop Method

The above named methods produce ground coffee that is different in many aspects. To further understand the difference, a highlight of the machines that are used in each method is necessary. Burr grinders have moving wheels and non moving surfaces and are used in the burr grinding method. They are of two types namely wheel burrs and conical burrs. They produce more uniform particles as the positioning of the burr can always be regulated to produce the desired size. Coffee oils are greatly conserved. These machines are more expensive but the extra cost is worth considering the quality of their grind. Blade grinders are used in the chopping method.

They are less expensive as compared to the burr grinders but they produce an uneven grind. This may compromise the quality of coffee brewed. Quality brewing requires evenly ground coffee. However, the fine of grind can be achieved if the grinder is left to run for a longer period. This is a disadvantage in disguise as the grind will be heated and a burned taste will be obtained. Flavors and oils are completely eroded.

Coffee ground by burr grind method can be used in many brewing systems namely percolated systems, French pressed or drip systems. This is because the grind does not result into clogging of the systems. On the other hand, coffee ground by chopping method can only be used in drip coffee makers. If used in pump espresso machines and French presses brewing systems, they result into clogging of the sieves.

The main differences of the grind obtained by the named method can be placed under two categories: the uniformity and size of the grind produced, quality of the grind and number of brewing systems each grind can be used. Knowledge of these differences is vital before a certain brewing system is selected.

Many users will find that burr grinders are more difficult to clean, since the machines themselves are usually well constructed and not for general servicing. Blade grinders on the other hand, can be easily dismantled for servicing, and thus easier to clean. One of the most important aspect of a grinder, is not whether it is burr or blade, but rather how clean the consumer maintains the machine at. A grinder with leftover coffee beans will never be as good as one that is regularly maintained. However, if the user plans to use cleaning tablets for their grinders, then the burr is recommended simply because it can withstand the crushing required with these tablets.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Seven Red and White Wine Types

Wine types are based on the type of grape used in the winemaking process, although wine labels sometime refer to the region in which the grape was grown rather than the grape itself.

France is big on naming their wines after the grape growing region, and wine drinkers don't much care which grapes are in the bottle, as long as the wine came from somewhere like Alsace, Bordeaux, and Champagne. That tendency is largely based on the fact that wine drinkers count on getting a wonderful tasting bottle of wine if it comes from a certain region.

However, the taste of wine depends very much on the grape or grapes used in the winemaking.

Leading Red Wine Types

Cabernet Sauvignon (ca-ber-NAY so-vin-yawn) is the name of the wine, as well as the grape, which is famous for being one of the world's finest red varietals.

Characteristics - Deep red in color, Cabernet is a beautiful medium to full-bodied, dry wine. It has a hearty, complex flavor evoking thoughts of black currants and blackberries. Traditionally, the wine is aged in oak, which gives it an oaky, vanilla flavor. It has a particularly smooth, fine finish. Higher quality Cabernet ages very well for decades.

While perfect all by itself, Cabernet is frequently blended with the red wine types of Merlot, Shiraz, and Sangiovese.

Growing Regions - Cabernet grape vines are very durable and adapt well to a variety of climates. This grape is grown in wine-making regions all over the world, including, Australia, Chile, France, Canada, and northern California.

Merlot (Mer-LO) has become increasingly popular over the last 10-15 years. Due to its mellow taste and low acidity it is a good choice for those new to drinking red wine. Merlot is the name of the wine and the grape.

Characteristics - Merlot is considered a bit softer and less tannic than other red wine types, like Cabernet. However, it's still a complex wine, with rich, chewy flavors of plum and blackberry and hints of cherry and orange. Merlot is not suited for extended aging and is typically consumed immediately.

Merlot is an outstanding grape in a stand-alone wine, as well as when blended with other grapes, particularly Cabernet.

Growing Regions - The Merlot grape plant is grown in Italy, Australia, Chile, Romania, Washington State and California.

Shiraz (shih-RAZ) and Syrah (Sih-rah) are names for the same grape, with Syrah being used by European vintners. (It shouldn't be confused with the Petit Sirah, a completely different grape.)

Characteristics - One of the darkest reds, Shiraz can be made as a fruity, sweet wine with plumy flavors or a dry peppery wine with notes of blackberries, licorice, and chocolate. Hints of toffee come from the wine's aging in oak barrels.

Shirazcan be consumed immediately or aged up to 5 years.

Shirazis frequently blended with Grenache and Cabernet grapes to make some fine wines.

Growing Regions - While the Shiraz grape most likely originated in the Rhone Valley of France where it has been used as a blend with other wines, it is Australia's most widely grown grape and has thus become known as an "Australian" wine. However, Shiraz is also made in South Africa, as well as in some U.S. wineries.

Shirazgrapes cultivated in warmer temperatures tend to have softer plum flavors, while cooler climates give the grape spicy or peppery qualities.

Malbec (MAHL-beck), a black grape, thrives best in the hot dry summers found in Argentina and Chile.

Characteristics - Malbec grapes make a mid-bodied, rustic red wine, dry, with high acidity. Due to its acidity, it is most often blended with other wines.

Growing Regions - Malbec is Argentina's most popular grape variety and is widely grown there. It is also grown in Chile, Australia, and northern California.

Pinot Noir (Pee-no na-wahr) is a delicious red wine made from a variety of black grapes that were originally grown in France's Burgundy region. Some connoisseurs believe that these grapes make some of the finest wines in the world.

Characteristics - Pinot Noir is a challenging grape to grow, but with the right conditions, it produces an outstanding, complex wine. The wine is light to moderate in body, fresh, and delicate. It comes in an array of colors, from purplish-red to cherry-red, even turning brown during aging. It's an earthy wine with varying aromas and flavors rich in worn leather, tea-leaves, oak, vanilla, and jammy, such as strawberry, raspberry, and plum.

Many Pinot Noirs are meant to be immediately consumed, but a good quality Pinot Noir can age for over 10 years.

Friday, January 27, 2012

How to Go Wine Tasting at Wineries?

Wine tasting is one of the things that tourists love to do, especially when in places that are famous for their exquisite wineries like California, Oregon, New York, Washington, Australia, France, Canada, Italy or Chile. Here are some tips and certain things that you must keep in mind while wine tasting, in order for you to enjoy and make your vacation as memorable as possible.

1. Do some research on the winery you plan to visit. Look at their website, and check to see if the wines they offer are not out of your price range, especially if you desire to go to one of the famous and luxury wineries. However, if you are on a tight budget, you better just stick to visiting one of the smaller vineyards, like the family-owned ones.

2. If you have an appointment, make an effort to show up on time. Some wineries won't wait, and will close their doors on late arrivals.

3. Consider hiring a driver and instruct him to stay sober, to be on the safe side. You may get drunk, especially when visiting numerous wineries and tasting several drinks.

4. Ask if there is a tasting fee. If there is, ask again if it can be waived by making a purchase. A small winery rarely charges a tasting fee, while medium and large-sized wineries do. However, a medium-sized winery may waive the tasting fee, while large-sized ones most likely do not.

5. Make conversation with the tasting room employees. They are usually very friendly. Let them know what you thought about the wine and inform them on the kind of wines you like. Once you have informed them, they will recommend some wines for you that they think you'd like. Employees have a fairly good knowledge about wine and they will be more than happy to share it with you.

6. You must maintain good etiquette. If you did not like the taste of the wine, you may spit it into the spit bucket. None of the employees will get offended because they are aware of the spit bucket, so that you can spit the drink out after tasting it. Just make sure that you dispose of it properly, and not in an immature way.

7. Listen to the employees' recommendations. They would often suggest that you eat either a piece of chocolate or cracker with toppings or spread to eat with the wine, because it will bring out even more the wine's flavour and make the experience more fun. It is also good to eat something or drink water in between drinks so that the flavours of the different wines you taste won't mix together, thus you will not know the true taste of the next drink you take a sip of.

8. The winemaking business is a very competitive industry, so if you are on a budget, or looking for wine of a better value, you can find these at the smaller, family-owned wineries.

9. If you are paying a wine tasting fee, then you don't have to purchase a bottle if you don't want to. However, it is polite that you buy at least one, to show that you enjoyed the tasting and appreciated the service. If you are not paying a tasting fee, show some etiquette and buy at least one bottle.

10. Purchase the wine that you liked the best. If your budget allows, you may buy another one that you enjoyed. However, if you plan on visiting other wineries, you might just have to settle on buying just one bottle per winery.