Archive for the 'Holidays' Category
Dr. Amy Myers, Founder and Medical Director of Austin UltraHealth, gives us nine tips for a healthier holiday season! Enjoy.
1. Avoid gluten.
- You can use arrowroot scratch or sweet rice flour to thicken your gravy instead of wheat flour. You can also make your own gluten-free stuffing or dinner rolls with almond meal or coconut flour.
2. Ditch the dairy.
- Use full-fat coconut milk instead of cow’s milk for your cream gravies or green bean casserole. You can also baste your turkey in coconut oil instead of butter.
3. Avoid alcohol.
- Ditch the wine and beers. Filtered Aquasana water with a splash of lime juice makes for a perfect holiday drink without the pain of a hangover.
4. Support local farmers.
- Plan ahead this holiday season and purchase your produce and meat from local farmer’s markets to practice farm-to-table habits and sustain local businesses.
5. Make your own holiday party classics.
- If you’re hosting parties this year, consider making your own gluten-free and dairy-free treats, like gluten-free cookies or offer an array of exotic nuts and dried fruits.
6. Share your eating habits with friends.
- If you aren’t hosting the party, then prepare a dish or two that you know will be safe for you to eat. This is a great opportunity to share your health journey with your friends!
7. Eat with purpose.
- Don’t eat yourself into a coma this year! Arrive to holiday parties with a plan. Eat your veggies first, then meat, then starches, and finally if you have room, a bit of dessert.
8. Go Green.
- If you’re roasting a turkey, save the bones and make your own turkey broth. If you have leftover vegetable pieces to discard, save them for a vegetable broth instead. You can freeze your broth and use it as a base for future soups.
- Focus your attention on relationships and connections with loved ones rather than food.
For more tips on functional medicine, visit http://www.dramymyers.com.
Planning on getting together with friends and family this 4th of July? Treat your guests to these delicious Aquasana recipe picks for a fun and festive Independence Day celebration.
Aquasana Americana Infused Water
-5 strawberries, sliced
-12 blueberries, pierced to release flavor
-5-6 slices of pineapple (cut into star shapes with a cookie cutter)
-Ice and Aquasana filtered water
Combine fruit with Aquasana filtered water and refrigerate overnight. Add ice and serve.
Organic Fresh Watermelon Sorbet
-1 cup of organic sugar
-3/4 cup of Aquasana filtered water
-3 ½ cups of seedless watermelon flesh
What to do:
Prep ice water bath in a medium size stainless steel bowl. Place sugar and Aquasana filtered water in a saucepan and dissolve sugar over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat when sugar is dissolved. Pour syrup into a small bowl and chill in the ice water bath until cool.Puree watermelon flesh in a blender. Slowly add chilled syrup with blender running until combined.Freeze sorbet in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions. Store in an airtight container until ready to use.
Skewered Grilled Organic Veggies
-15 bamboo skewers
-2 medium summer squash, halved and cut into half inch slices
-2 medium zucchinis, halved and cut into half inch slices
-1 red bell pepper, cut into quarters lengthwise and cut into one inch pieces
-1 basket cherry tomatoes
-1/4 cup olive oil
-Salt and pepper
-2-3 tbsp chopped fresh herbs of your choice
Place the skewers in a bowl and cover with Aquasana filtered water, soak for 30 minutes. This will prevent the skewers from burning. Prepare grill at medium heat. Place chopped veggies in a medium bowl and toss with olive oil and a generous amount of salt and pepper to taste. Skewer veggies in a colorful arrangement, alternating colors.
Place skewered veggies over medium heat on the grill. Check and turn skewers as needed and grill until veggies are marked and tender about 10-15 minutes. Remove from heat and place on a platter. Drizzle veggies with a good balsamic vinegar, sprinkle with fresh herbs, and serve!
It’s that time of year again when gift giving abounds. Gift exchanges and gestures of appreciation can really start to add up when you consider purchasing gifts for party hosts and hostesses, neighbors, teachers, coaches andbabysitters. To make things a little easier we’ve come up with some super easy, gift ideas for everyone on your list using our Aquasana refillable glass water bottles. Create the perfect gift by filling our glass water bottles with thoughtful treats for a present they will enjoy this holiday season and a reusable bottle they will love year round!
Going to a few holiday parties or get-togethers this year? It’s always appropriate to take a gift for the host or hostess. Fill an Aquasana glass water bottle with one of the following for a gift that is sure to be unique and appreciated.
- Premium loose leaf tea in a relaxing or fragrant blend. Tie a tea infuser around the Aquasana lid with a festive bow and a hand-made tag that identifies the name and flavor of the tea.
- Gourmet coffee beans for the coffee-lover. Choose a tasty holiday or dessert blend, add a bow and a gift tag.
Gifts for the Teacher
It’s always nice to show your appreciation to the dedicated teachers that make an impact on our family’s lives. For a fun and festive “thanks for all you do,” fill an Aquasana glass water bottle with one of the following goodies: Jelly Bellies, home-made hot cocoa mix, red and white peppermint candies, mini individually wrapped chocolates. Add a note of appreciation and some ribbon and you’ve got a quick, thoughtful gift that will stand out amongst all the candles and coffee mugs.
Gifts for the Coach
A refillable Aquasana glass water bottle is perfect for the coach! Fill one with a healthy snack such as trail mix or almonds. Add a stopwatch or whistle with a ribbon and a note and you have a season win!
Gifts for the Babysitter
Show your appreciation for all those times they were there when you needed them. Fill an Aquasana glass water bottle with their favorite treat such as Jelly Bellies, chocolates, bubble gum or home-made goodies. Add a gift card or movie passes and you’ve got an awesome way to say “you’re the best.”
Gifts for the Neighbors
Don’t be caught empty-handed when neighbors stop by with holiday cheer and goodies. Fill some Aquasana water bottles with gourmet coffee, mini-chocolates, snack mix or peppermints. Top with a bow and a festive ornament for the best gift on the block.
Gifts for the Dog
Whether it’s your favorite canine friend or your friend fond of canines, an Aquasana glass water bottle filled with treats for Fido is sure to delight! Make your own delicious treats at home or fill with a special store-bought goodie. Add a bright colored collar around the top of the water bottle and you’ve got a guaranteed tail-wagger!
Make sure you have Aquasana refillable glass water bottles on hand this holiday season to make gift -giving a joy. It’s not too late to stock up! From now until December 24th, all of our glass bottles come with gift tags especially made for you to share with friends!
One of the most important, yet often overlooked ingredient in any beverage is the ice cube. It can take a glass of water from ordinary to outstanding, iced tea from delicious to divine. The size, shape and taste of ice are all important factors when creating the perfect beverage.
So what is the perfect ice cube? Here at Aquasana, we think the best ice cubes are crystal clear and made from pure, clean, chemical-free Aquasana filtered water. Undesirable cloudiness in ice cubes occurs when the water contains dissolved solids and minerals and freezes too quickly. Give boring ice cubes the cold shoulder with these great tips:
Use Aquasana Ice: For beautiful, crystal clear ice cubes, start with Aquasana filtered water. Boil water for 2-3 minutes to remove air bubbles, then pour into ice cube trays. Cover trays with a piece of parchment paper and put in freezer. The hot water and parchment keep the cubes from freezing too quickly.
Once you have mastered the crystal clear ice cube, try jazzing them up to create a delicious, and visually impressive iced beverage perfect for entertaining guests. Half the fun is experimenting with interesting beverage and ice pairings.
Here are some tasty combinations to try:
To make lemon ice cubes, prepare crystal clear ice cubes and add slices of fresh lemon, lime or mint to the ice cube trays before freezing.
Aquasana Lemonade with Strawberry Mint Ice Cubes:
To prepare ice cubes: Put a mint leaf in the bottom of each ice cube section. Top with blended frozen strawberries, pack down to form compact cubes and freeze. Prepare your favorite lemonade with Aquasana filtered water. Serve lemonade over strawberry mint ice cubes—delicious!
Aquasana Iced Tea and Lemonade Ice Cubes:
Freeze lemonade in ice cube trays. Pour your favorite Iced Tea, made with Aquasana filtered water, over frozen lemonade cubes.
Make up your own combinations–the possibilities are endless!
From all of us at Aquasana, we hope you have a fun-filled, happy, healthy holiday!
As the holiday season quickly approaches it’s easy to get overwhelmed with the ever increasing demands on our time. Holiday entertaining, events, gift-giving and charitable activities easily add up to a hectic, stress-filled holiday season.
This holiday, get your game on. With a little planning and organization your holiday season can be all joy! Here are a few of our favorite tips and ideas for making the most of the next few weeks.
This weekend get a game plan for your Thanksgiving activities. If you are hosting a celebration, use this time to complete your shopping and prepare your home for the holiday. If possible, plan for make-ahead items to lighten the load on Thanksgiving Day.
Entertaining Ideas: Fill ice cube trays with Aquasana filtered water for delicious drinks. Add lemon slices to ice cube trays for a refreshing addition to water and ice tea or make a citrus mint flavored water to compliment your meal: Combine 3 sliced oranges and 10 mint leaves in one gallon of Aquasana filtered water. Chill for 30 minutes before serving.
While you are recovering from the holiday feast, make a list of all the holiday gift giving you would like to do. Most importantly, identify those gifts that need to be given before the holiday to teachers, coaches, colleagues and holiday gift exchanges. With a little planning you can tackle these all at once and have them ready to go when needed.
Gift Idea: Stock up on Aquasana glass water bottles this weekend. Fill an Aquasana reusable glass water bottle with a holiday treat such as, gourmet coffee, tea, trail mix or pet treats. Add a festive bow and gift tag. Voilà! You have a fabulous, eco-conscious gift that will be appreciated and enjoyed throughout the year.
The weekend after Thanksgiving is the perfect time to take a few moments to plan out the remainder of the year. You have six weekends before year end so make the most of them! Make a list of all your commitments and plans and organize your schedule for the next few weeks. If you haven’t done so already, now is the time to make reservations and purchase tickets for dining and entertainment in December.
With a little planning you can roll effortlessly through the holiday season. Most importantly, stay hydrated, relax and remember….you can do this!
Time is running short on the holiday season. Are you done with your decorating and shopping? If not, here are some quick DIY ornaments and gifts you can make. They’re fun, they’re mostly quick, and you’ll appreciate them for years to come.
Have some fun DIY ornament and gift ideas? Tell us your favorite thing to make this time of year in the comments!
It’s that time of year again: carols, parties, gifts, familial guilt (for some of us), and the relentless pressure to buy, buy, buy. As much as I love this season, it can also be full of stress that can lessen joy and overshadow family time. Over the years I’ve discovered a few things that really help get me into the holiday spirit in a relaxing way.
Regardless of your religious affiliation, this is the perfect time of year to add a little something new and different to your living space. Whether it’s preparing for Christmas with a tree, wreaths, lights and stockings, breaking out the menorah and dreidels, pulling out last year’s Yule Log or just displaying some tasteful evergreen boughs, holly berries and snowflake ornaments in honor of winter itself, changing your surroundings will just make the season more merry in general. If time is an issue, just do a few additions, like a few scented candles and a nice bouquet of flowers on the table. The change of scenery will give your space and you a new, refreshing energy.
Cook or bake
If you have the time and the talent, baking is the way to go to really feel the jolly rolling in your veins. Besides the satisfaction you derive from creating something wonderful at this time of year, making your home smell amazing has a way of lifting your spirits despite the early darkness outside. Just try these little beauties: salted caramel-stuffed chocolate truffle cookies. Remember that the olfactory sense (smell) is possibly the one most powerfully associated with memory, so the warm aroma of crusty bread or chocolatey goodness can transport you to childhood or happier times in an instant. And the dishes can wait until tomorrow.
Of your time. Of your heart. Of your loose change to the Salvation Army pot at the local grocery store or a local charity. It needn’t be a tremendous out-pouring, it just needs to be sincere. Remember, if you are one of us who shoves relentlessly through December in search of perfect holiday gifts for loved ones, to let a harried mother cut in line, smile at over-worked and under-appreciated store employees, stop and give a few murmured words of thanks for small kindnesses. Feeling thankful and appreciative is one of the quickest ways I know of to feel warm inside.
Take a deep breath on this one because it’s not always easy or comfortable. This is, however, the perfect time of year to tally up in your head all the people who wronged you—perceived or real, on purpose or not—and make the conscious effort to let it go. It’s not for them, it’s for you.
Take some time to yourself. It doesn’t have to be a lot of time, but find five minutes a day or a weekend afternoon during which you can take a break from the hustle and just relax and be yourself. Such a break will recharge your system and give you the energy and calm center you need to make it to January.
What are your favorite things to do to get ready for the holidays? Share your tips and thoughts in the comments!
The Fourth of July brings on a lot of planning for any family—which festival to go to, what recipes would everyone enjoy, what games would the kids enjoy—or, if you have yet to start a family, where’s the best happy hour? Even with all the decisions to be made, The Fourth always ends with the flash and bang of fireworks, unless you’re in the middle of a drought, of course. In that case, what in the world are you going to do? When planning a whole day of activities, it’s helpful to consider several ideas and choose which best fits your family.
1) Food for The Fourth! Holiday recipes are always a fun idea and great to get kids involved. A hot day always deserves cold food so think fruit! Strawberries are always a tasty, healthy treat and simple to make festive for this holiday. Grab a bag of white chocolate chips, melt them down and then have the kids dip the strawberries one-by-one into the chocolate then top them off with blue sugar crystals, allow the chocolate to harden, and Voila! Instant edible patriotism! Wash it down with a red, white and blue drink, which is equally simple to make. Fill a glass with ice then add cranberry juice first, then a wild berry flavored sports drink and lastly, diet 7-up or Sprite. Make sure to pour each flavor over the ice so not mix the colors and always put the drink with the most sugar first.
2) Home for the Holidays. If you’re throwing a Fourth of July party at home, it’s always a great idea to have activities lined up for the kiddos. Since they’ll be outside most of the day, anything that causes a mess is a winner. Buy a finger paint paper roll, which can be found at crafts or school supply stores, roll it out in the driveway and have the kids paint what they think symbols patriotism and Independence Day. If you’re not crazy about paint, classic sidewalk chalk is always fun for little ones.
3) Firecracker, Firecracker, Boom, Boom, Boom! Most communities host Fourth of July festivals. A couple ways to find out which local festival best fits your family, visit the city’s website or browse your local newspaper for a schedule of events. Most festivals offer live entertainment, kid friendly activities and contests, and, of course, fireworks. If fireworks are out of the question this year due to lack of rain, alternative ideas are to watch a laser show, bring a blanket to watch a movie at a park or if you don’t want to deal with the traffic, light sparklers in the yard for the kids to enjoy then gather in front of the television with the lights turned off and watch the numerous fireworks shows across the country together.
Whatever your plans are this holiday always have safety at the top of your list!
Have a safe and happy Fourth of July from everyone at Aquasana!