15 Amazing Uses for Cucumbers

Any medical claims here were obtained by doing a little bit of research. I am not medically trained in any way and do not claim to know the validity of any of the medical claims.

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Here are some amazing uses for cucumbers. The picture is from www.rareseeds.com

Cucumbers

WHO KNEW CUCUMBERS COULD DO ALL THIS!!!

Spice up your 8 glasses per day of water with a slice or two of cucumber. It’s wonderfully refreshing, but there are amazing benefits to cucumber as well. Cucumbers are cooler than you think …

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1. Fat busting: Did you know that cucumbers are fat busters and they have a  photochemical in them? Just think about it. When women have swollen eyes they put cucumber slices on their eyes. Why do they do this? Because the cucumbers make the collagen in your skin tighten, thus the lack of puffiness. You can lessen the visibility of problematic cellulite by rubbing it with a cucumber. You can do this anywhere on your body. This is also true for wrinkles. Don’t spend hard earned dollars on miracle creams when cucumbers can do the same thing for chicken feed so to say. When your little one has had a rough day and been crying for hours, you can rub a cucumber under their eyes for a short while and remove the puffy evidence of their crying so long.                                                                                                                

2. Defogger: Don’t get annoyed about the fog on the mirror after your shower. Just rub a slice of cucumber on the mirror before you hop into the shower. It serves a two fold purpose, you have a fog free mirror and a pleasant smelling bathroom. The nice smell helps to boost your mood. Now you’ll be ready when the kids get up with all of their demands for your time.

3. Headaches: Since cucumbers have a high amount of B vitamins, sugar, and electrolytes, they help to beat that headache that’s been threatening to take over. You only need to eat some cucumber. They also replenish the nutrients missing in your body to help you avoid a hangover the next morning when you have had a little too much wine with dinner. Just eat a half of a cucumber before you go to bed.

4. WD-40 replacement: Cucumbers can help to get rid of a squeaky hinge simply by rubbing some on the hinge. Now you won’t have to worry about tearing your house or garage apart yo find the WD-40, just to get rid of a squeak. No more worrying about waking up the baby when you look in on her and the door to the baby’s room squeaks really loudly.

5. Crayon on the walls: Cucumbers make good erasers for the occasional art work on the walls by the budding artist in the family. When the next Picasso draws the next great painting on the wall with the crayons, just rub an unpeeled cucumber on the art work to erase it. But it might be a good idea to take a picture of it first. That way little junior won’t get too upset when he realizes his masterpiece is gone. This method will also work for pen mistakes.

6. Halitosis killer: When you put a slice of cucumber in the roof of your mouth and hold it there with your tongue for 30 seconds, the photochemical in the cucumber will kill the bacteria that is causing your bad breath. This is the same photochemical that helps hide cellulite and reduces the puffiness in your eyes.

7. Tarnish remover: Store bought tarnish removal creams could pose medical issues for the kids as well as yourself. The odor is fairly strong and could cause breathing issues. Not so with cucumbers. When you rub the tarnished area with the cucumber, be it the stainless steel kitchen faucet or any of the stainless steel appliances, it leaves a pleasant smell, the tarnish is gone, the item is streak free, and there is an added benefit for your hands. The cucumber leaves your hands feeling really soft.

8. Energy booster: When you’re feeling tired in the afternoon, don’t go spending a lot of money on energy drinks or Starbucks. All you need to do is grab a cucumber and eat it. The carbohydrates and B vitamins in it are just enough to give you a longer-lasting and healthier boost of energy than anything else that you can waste your money on. This includes soda, coffee, and those health hazard energy drinks.

9. Got The Munchies?: To keep from starving to death and for energy European trappers ate cucumbers. Did you know that? I sure didn’t, before researching cucumbers and their uses. You can eat a cucumber as a healthy choice when the munchies hit, if those big burly manly men can eat one to keep from starving and to give them extra energy. if your theater doesn’t offer healthy alternatives to munching on butter soaked popcorn, slice up some cucumbers and take them in a small plastic container, instead of giving in to the theaters unhealthy offerings.

10. Frugal facial: If you are a frugal person, then this hack is for you. Slice up a cucumber and boil it in a pot of water, let the chemicals inside of the cucumber mix with the steam. After removing the pot from the heat, simply lean over the pot, and let the steam hit you in your face. This will make your skin more radiant and healthy, and you will feel relaxed and rejuvenated.

11. Shoe polish: Would you ever have thought that a cucumber could polish your shoes? Well, guess what? It can. All you need to do is to cut a slice off of your cucumber and rub it on your shoe. Not only will it shine your shoes, but it will also repel water.

12. Pest control: When you happen to be unfortunate enough to have pests in your garden, never fear, the awesome cucumber is here. Put three or four slices of cucumber in a small pie tin and place them in your garden. You won’t smell it, but the chemicals in the cucumbers has a reaction that pests hate. For a whole year, the reaction will drive them from your garden. You only need to replace the cucumber slices periodically.

13. Sunburn: For those of you that love the sun and can’t stay out of it, and for those of you that have little ones that are always getting their sun screen off, this hack is for you. You and/or your little ones are not always protected by your sunblock. If by chance either one of you ends up getting too much sun, and you got too sunburned, but you don’t have any aloe, help is just a cucumber away. All you need to do is rub some cucumber on the sunburn. There are some doctors that even use cucumber to treat irritated skin and sunburns.

14. Blood pressure: In researching uses for cucumber, I found out that cucumber has been used to treat high blood pressure for a long time. If you have high blood pressure, add some cucumbers to your daily diet. Research is also being done into the use of cucumbers for lowering cholesterol.

15. Constipation remedy: As strange as it may sound, cucumber seeds are a natural diuretic. Next time you are constipated, try eating a cucumber. Add a cucumber to your daily diet if you are one of those unfortunate people that suffers from constipation all of the time.

 

Hacks You Should Know About

Here are some hacks that will help out in multiple areas of your daily life. You should know about these because they are really awesome.

I bet there are a lot of you that have empty CD spindles with lids. Use them to take bagels to work or on a picnic. They are perfect for it. Picture is from www.pinterest.com.

Bagle in CD Spindle

When you break anything glass and aren’t sure whether or not you got up all of the splinters when you swept up the glass, there are two alternatives that you can choose from to make sure.                                                                                                                         The first alternative is to take some damp paper towels and wipe over the area and make sure that nothing comes up on the paper towels. If anything comes up, then repeat the process until no glass shards come up on the paper towels.                                                 The second alternative is to take a strip of heavy duty packing tape and go over the area lightly. I say lightly, so that if there are any glass shards that cling to the tape you won’t cut your hand. If there are any shards, repeat the process until the tape comes up with no glass shards on it.

Heavy Duty Shipping Tape can be used in many ways. Some are listed below. The picture is from products3.3m.com.

Heavy Duty Shipping Tape

To keep from having to buy expensive lint remover roller refills, just tear off some heavy duty shipping tape. The glue is probably stronger on the shipping tape than on the lint roller anyway.

Use the heavy duty shipping tape to clean down in the crevices of your furniture. You can fold it up to make it go in the cracks easier. You will probably be surprised how much dirt the tape brings back up with it.

Use the heavy duty shipping tape to clean around your baseboards, window sills, and doorways. The strong glue can pick up dirt that dust rags can’t.

I used to take the end of a new roll of tape, where the piece of paper is so that you can find the starting edge, and fold some of the tape over and over it to make a holder so that you could always get the end very easily. After discovering the bread tags, I no longer have to go to all of that trouble. Now I can just use a bread tag, after I get my next bread with a tag and not a twist tie. I got the picture off of Google.

Bread Tab Tape Holder

In an earlier blog, I mentioned other uses for bread tag or clips. This one I just heard about today, and found the picture tonight  on Google. It’s says wikiHow on the bottom of it.

Bread Tag Repair For Flip-Flops                                                                                                                                                                                                                         If you have a pair of flip flops that are broken due to a split in the sole, use a bread tag to fix it. It fits around the toe piece perfectly. Glue the tag to the flip-flop right under the bottom of the toe piece. If you are afraid that just one won’t do the trick, then put a second one on it.

Whenever I am hammering a nail is somewhere, I always remember the time when I was trying to put boards down, in the attic where I lived, so that I could store stuff up in the attic. For a pretty good time, I was doing fine, next thing I knew I had whammed my finger with the hammer while my finger was on the top of the nail. The flat top of the nail cut into my finger really bad. My finger started bleeding and wouldn’t stop. I got up to get out of the attic and my foot slipped and my whole leg went through the ceiling right in the living room. Not a very good day. I started using a pair of pliers to hold the nail, whenever I was hammering one in after that. Then I started using a clothespin, because the clothespin would hold on to the nail by itself. There was not a chance that I would miss the nail and pliers holding the nail and hit my hand. I Googled to find a picture of a clothespin holding a nail and found the one below. The picture is from www.realsimple.com. There is also a device at hardware stores with different size slots in it to hold different size nails.

clothespin holding nail

Believe it or not, there are other things that ice trays can be used for besides ice.

Make freezer pops for the kids. Pour fruit juice of drink mixes that have been mixed up into the ice tray. If you catch them just before they freeze you can put plastic spoons in the individual cubes as handles. Put them into water as ice or the drink that the cubes were made out of, so when they melt, they won’t dilute the drink.

cool aid in ice trays

Put coffee into the ice trays for when you want ice coffee, the frozen coffee wont dilute the iced coffee like actual ice cubes will.The picture is from cookinfordummies.wordpress.com

coffee ice cubes

You can put individual eggs into each cube area and freeze them to use whenever a recipe calls for eggs. After the eggs have frozen, put them in a freezer bag and take out however many you need as you need them. It will save a lot of time by not having to crack the eggs at the time you need them. The picture is from www.littlethings.com

cracked eggs in ice tray

You can use the ice trays to hold little miscellaneous things in your junk drawer, or different jewelry items in your jewelry drawer.. Picture is from www.pinterest.com and from thekrazycouponlady.com

ice tray with misc junk  jewelry in ice tray

You can also use ice trays in your sewing box. Picture is from www.nationalquilterscircle.comwww.nationalquilterscircle.com

bobbin-ice-trays-resized

I hope some of these hacks will come in  handy for you.

 

 

 

Binder Clips Hacks, Colors of Bread Ties and Tags, Fresh Produce Codes

Some people may not know it, but produce stickers tell what type of environment the produce was grown in. The colors of bread tags and ties tell what day the bread was made. The codes for the colors are given below. The middle two picture show the color codes for bread tags and ties as well as a way to recycle the bread tags in the office, the computer room or on the computer desk. The last part shows binder clips, and some of the hacks possible by using them.

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The picture below is from http://www.amazing-stories.net/found-out-what-the-small-stickers/2/

When you know what the codes stand for, even if there isn’t an explanation as to what type of produce it is, it won’t matter. There are three different types of codes that tell what environment the fresh produce was grown in. The types are Organic, Conventional, and GMO.

A 5 digit code that starts with the number 9 means that the produce is Organic and was grown naturally not using and chemicals. 9 Is Fine

A 4 digit code that starts with 4 means that the produce was grown using chemicals and pesticides. Whenever I know that produce was grown the conventional way, I always wash it before I eat it. I feel safer that way. After I wash it, I figure I can eat it without becoming ill from it.

A 5 digit code that starts with an 8 means that the produce is a product of GMO engineering. In other words, it is a Genetically Modified Organism. 8, I hate.

 

Produce Stickers Codes

3107_PLU_code_orange       mango-conventionally-grown-PLU-code-4959

The mango above is not organic.  It is conventionally grown.  I don’t like that word choice because it sounds so… normal.  It is a sad state of our farming practices when it is “normal” to spray food intended for human consumption with poison.  No wonder people continue to get sicker.   If you see on the label a number beginning with a 3 or 4, that food could contain poisons like pesticides and herbicides and could have been grown with synthetic fertilizer from petroleum.  I would much prefer a mango that had a PLU code starting with a “9″, which is “fine”.

If an apple is conventionally grown and starts with a 3 or 4, I wash the apple, then peel the skin off and discard.  There are probably poisons sprayed on the skin and I do not feel right about feeding that to my family or myself.

Apples

3 or 4

If we buy 3 or 4, we are sure to wash the food thoroughly before cooking or eating.  The orange peel above could be saturated with poisons, so I would not use the peel in any recipe.

I got some of this off of Google with the following  Reference:  http://energyfanatics.com/2009/04/24/fruit-label-organic-genetically-engineered/

I Googled what GMO means and this is the first result.

Genetically Modified Organisms
     GMO Tomato     This picture is from theodysseyonline.com
If you’ve shopped in a natural foods store in recent months, you’ve no doubt seen products bearing the label “GMO-free” or “contains only non-GMO ingredients.” The acronym GMO stands for Genetically Modified Organisms, which refers to any food product that has been altered at the gene level.
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The picture below is from 710keel.com. You will notice that the colors of the twist ties are the same as the colors of the bread tags in the picture below this one. We all probably grew up believing that bread was baked everyday. The colors and days of these twist ties and tags tells us otherwise. This way we will know what are the best days to go buy bread. You just need to know what time the bread delivery comes that day, so you won’t get there before the bread has even been delivered. Since bread is not baked on Wednesday, if you buy bread on Wednesday, it is day old bread. The same goes for Sunday. But I would think that Sunday would be obvious though. Even growing up, I don’t think anybody ever thought that bread was baked on Sunday.

Bread Twist Tie Colors

The picture below is from theideaking.blogspot.com. These are bread tags.

Bread Color Codes

The picture below is from hubpages.com. This shows a really unique way to recycle the bread tags. You can use them to identify the numerous cords that are necessary to use any computer and all of its’ attached machines such as a printer, the speakers, a DVD burner and so on.

Bread Clips

 

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The first picture below is from www.buzzfeed.com. This is a really nifty way to make sure that whenever you have to disconnect your computer, or any of the machines that are attached to it, the cords will not fall behind the desk.                                                                       Here is a link to a video on the topic of hacks using binder clips  <iframe width=”560″ height=”315″ src=”https://www.youtube.com/embed/prG3qWjp4Nk” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>

The second picture is from www.instructables.com. The binder clips make a good phone holder.

Binder Clips Hacks Binder Clip for Phone

The picture of the cord organizer idea is from www.unorganizedmommy.com.

The toothpaste tube holder is from www.survivalkit.com. The idea can be used on any type of squeeze tube.

Binder Clips - Organized Cords   Binder Clip - Tube Holder

The above pictures

Hacks For The Microwave

These are hacks that you use in your microwave.

  1. To clean your microwave very easily:

Take one lemon and cut it in half.                                                                                             In a small bowl put 1/2 cup of water.                                                                                         Squeeze both halves of the lemon in the water and put the squeezed lemon halves in too.   Put in microwave for 3 minutes.                                                                                               Take out of microwave and swish the mixture around.                                                       Put it back into the microwave and let it sit for five minutes.                                                    Remove from microwave and wipe it out.

2. Second version – put a small bowl of water in microwave for two minutes and wipe out.

If you need to heat two things in the microwave at the same time, but they won’t both fit. Put a glass upside down in the microwave and put the second thing on it and heat it up.

3. A third way to easily clean the microwave is to put a handful of wet paper towels in the microwave for about 4 or 5 minutes. When the towels cool down, just use them to wipe off the softened up food.

4. I have heard that if you cut both ends off of an onion and heat it in the microwave for 30 seconds then when you cut it there won’t be any tears.

5. It is possible to steam a postage stamp off of a letter in the microwave. All you have to do to steam it off is to put a couple of drops of water on it and put it in the microwave for 20 to 30 seconds. The stamp will come off very easily.

6. If you have crystallized honey in a glass jar, take the lid off,  put it in the microwave for about two minutes and the honey will be back to normal.

7. To make lemons or limes super juicy, put them in the microwave for 10 to 20 seconds. They will come out easy to squeeze and very juicy.

8. To make peaches or tomatoes easy to peel, put them in the microwave for 30 seconds and them let them sit for about two minutes. The peelings will easily come off.

9. When your brown sugar gets all clumped up like a rock, you can make it become soft again. Dampen a paper towel and close it up tightly in the box. Put the whole thing in the microwave for 20 to 30 seconds. The sugar will soften up.

10. For easy heat compresses, take a wash cloth or a hand towel and wet it. Put it in the microwave for about one minute. It will come out nice and hot to be able to use it as a hot compress.

 

Just A Few Neat Egg Hacks

I have heard these hacks from people on the bus when I go to the store.

This first hack will come in handy for those that do a lot of baking. Did you know that you can freeze raw eggs and then use them in cooking. This includes scrambling them. All you need to do is take a plastic ice tray that has at least a dozen sections in it for ice cubes. Crack one egg and put it in each of the sections and freeze the whole tray. After the eggs are frozen just pop them out and put them in a plastic bag back in the freezer. When you need a single egg, or multiple eggs, just go to the freezer and take out as many as you need. let them thaw out and then cook with them just like you always have.

We all know that when a raw egg goes anyplace except for in the bowl or frying pan that you want it to go in, it’s a mess to try to clean up. It usually takes a lot of paper towels to accomplish the job. Well not any more. If a raw egg goes astray when it’s being cracked, just cover it with salt and a paste will form. Once it has become like a paste, it’s easy to clean up.

If you want a perfect sunny side up egg in the microwave, then put one cracked open egg in the center of a small bowl. Stab the egg in the center, very gently, to let it get air. Put it in the microwave for three minutes and you will get a perfect sunny side up egg.

To tell if the egg is still fresh, float it in a bowl of cold water. If it lays on the bottom,  the egg is fresh. If the egg stands on one end on the bottom, it it still good but a few weeks old. If they float to the surface they are no longer fresh enough to eat.

 

A Dozen Simple To Do Life Hacks

Here are a dozen hacks that you can do easily.

  1. Instead of buying tube rollers to roll up tubes, such as toothpaste, as you use them, use a bobby pin. Start rolling up the tube at the bottom, flattening the tube as you go up. Put the bobby pin through the middle of the part where the tube is being rolled up.
  2. Have some new shoes that are too tight? – Here’s an easy way to break them in. Put on a thick pair of socks and then put on the shoes. Now take a hair dryer and hold it near the tight spots for about five minutes. That’s all it takes to stretch the new shoes out where they hurt your feet.
  3. When your sink isn’t big enough to hold the container you need to fill – an easy way to fill it is to take a new(as in never been used) dust pan that has a handle on it that fits around a broom. Put the dust pan part under the faucet in the bathroom. Have your container under the handle right where it sticks over the sink. When you turn on the water, the water should flow off of the handle of the dustpan and right into the container with no problem.
  4. You may have a toilet cleaner, that doesn’t stink, in a strange place in your house. Why do I say this? Because it may be in your refrigerator. What is it you may be asking by now? Well, it’s none other than Coca Cola. It will take the stains out of your toilet. Just pour it in and let it sit for a up to an hour. Clean the toilet bowl with a toilet brush, and then flush the toilet. That’s it, and you have a clean toilet.
  5. Not enough room in your microwave to heat up two small bowls at one time? Use a cup that is as tall as the bowls are, and put it beside the first bowl. Take the second bowl and put it on top of the cup so that it can heat up at the same time as the first bowl does. Space problem solved.
  6. Easy way to only toast the outside of your sandwich bread. Put two slices at the same time in just one of the slots in the toaster. The outside will be toasted and the inside will be warm, but not hard and toasted. The inside of the two slices of toast will be soft.
  7. Do you want to heat up you leftovers evenly at the same time? Put a small open circle in the inside of whatever you are heating up. This is sort of like making a well in the middle of the mashed potatoes for the gravy.
  8. To absorb any possible spills in the bag in the kitchen or bathroom trashcan, put a few layers(like two or three sheets) of newspaper in the bottom of it. The newspaper will absorb the liquid very easily.
  9. There are two ways to steam wrinkles out of a shirt – One way is by running a hot shower and keeping the bathroom door closed so that the steam won’t escape, then hang up the shirt until the bathroom cools off.
  10. Keep aerosol spray cans organized and out of the little ones hands – use a hanging bag that holds shoes and hang it up on the back of a closet door.
  11. Always find the ends of a rolls of tape – put paper clips on the cut end of the roll of tape. Never have to keep turning the roll of tape around and around to find the end of the tape any more.
  12. Keep your water bottle cold longer – when you go to fill your traveling water bottle, just fill it about a fourth of the way and lay it on its’ side in the freezer. After if freezes, and right before you leave the house, fill it with cold water from the refrigerator. The ice that is down the side of the bottle will keep the rest of the cold water colder longer.

Ten Easy To Do Life Hacks

Here are some life hacks that are as simple as simple can be. They take very little time to do.

1. Keep wet shoes in shape – put scrunched up news paper inside the wet shoes to make the shoes keep their shape. I have done this many times. It works great.

2. How to keep little ones in bed so they won’t fall out – put a swimming pool noodle under the fitted sheet on the bed. Unless your child is bigger than normal, this should keep the little one from rolling off of the bed while they are sleeping.

3. Buttons won’t fall off of your shirt after you do this – just put some clear fingernail polish over the thread on the outside of the shirt. It won’t ravel once it dries.

4. Eliminate static cling – throw a wadded up ball of aluminum foil in your clothes in the dryer. It will serve a dual purpose. It will act as a dryer sheet, and it will eliminate static cling.

5. To dry dish washing sponges – use a binder clip that has the handles arranged so that they are flat on your sink or counter. Put the sponge in the clip standing straight up so that it can dry out.

6. To separate unpopped kernels from the popped ones –  when the bag comes out of the microwave, only open it enough for the unpopped kernels to fall out when the bag is turned upside down and shaken. Shake the bag until no unpopped kernels come out, then empty the popped pop corn into a big bowl.

7. To make grilled cheese in a toaster – unless your toaster shuts off when it is on it’s side, that’s all you need to do. Put your bread in the toaster with the cheese side up. Push the on button to start the toaster toasting the cheese. Watch it closely so that the cheese will not get burned. You want to only brown the cheese.

8. Chilled white wine without ice – freeze green grapes. The grapes will keep the wine chilled but will not water it down.

9. How to retrieve small dropped items – simply put a stocking over the end of the pipe connector on your vacuum cleaner. When the vacuum is turned on, all of the small items will be sucked up and cling to the stocking covering.

10. To light candles that have melted down in a jar – all you need to do is to likgt a piece os spaghetti and then put the lit spaghetti down into the jar.

Hacks Using Medical Supplies

There may not be many readers out there, but for the few readers that have to use medical supplies every day, here are some hacks for you. I have to use 60 cc catheter tip syringes to irrigate my artificial bladder.That being the case, I always have a few extras on hand. These come in handy for other things besides irrigating my bladder. They come in a sealed plastic package, and even have a cap on the tip for extra protection. In the pictures below you see what the front of the package looks like, the back of the package, and the syringe actually out of the package.

2015-12-02 00.27.072015-12-01 22.52.192015-12-01 22.56.212015-12-02 01.46.58
Here are a few other uses for 60 cc catheter tip syringes:

  1. They are perfect for basting meats and vegetables. You use them the same way as you would a bulb baster, but these have quite a bit more force, and can be aimed better because of it. If there is a tine space that needs basting, just stick the tip down where the basting is needed and give the syringe a fast push.
  2. These are good for doing small power wash jobs too. The stream of water or soap and water comes out fast and forcefully. The force actually sort of blasts whatever the stream hits. This is great for pesky corners where no sponge or cloth can get into.
  3. To help with cleaning the toilet bowl. With the stream being so forceful, it can easily be aimed up under the rim the clean it very easily. I say easily, only if the toilet is kept pretty clean all alone. But if by chance you have been too bust to keep up with it, then you can always use bleach water in the syringe. You can spray it and let it dry, then repeat until it comes clean. It is also helpful to use a toilet brush if the stain is set in too badly.  As I am very picky, I use a syringe to squirt down the toilet, on the inside, practically every time I use it.
  4. These syringes can also be used to dislodge stubborn dust in corners of cabinets and shelves, and anything else that is sturdy. I wouldn’t use it on anything breakable. The force is so strong that it may knock the breakable object over and cause it to break.
  5. I collect dolls, and I use the syringe to clean out the eyes and ears with a quick forceful blast of air from the syringe. I also use it to clean out the little beds that some of the dolls came in. It is really handy. Because it is so small, I can easily hold the doll, or whatever equipment that came with the doll, while I am squirting the air wherever.
  6. I will let you in on a little secret. The syringes come in a 10 ml size also.  But they are what is called a Luer-Lok Tip. That means that they were made for something else to be attached to the top. This would usually be a needle for an injection. So to use these, you would need to get catheter adapters to screw on the ends of them. These smaller ones are good for even smaller jobs. They are perfect for blowing out a computer keyboard. You do have to keep pumping it, but it is less expensive than buying the special computer spray cans of air.                                                                                                                                                                                                       I hope some of these hacks will be helpful to you. The syringes can be purchased at any medical supply dealer. But it is important to ask for CATHETER TIP 60 CC SYRINGES to get the ones like what I am talking about.                                                                                                                                                                                       This is what the packaging looks like on the front of the 10 ml syringe with the Luer-Lok Tip.                                                                                                                                                             2015-12-02 01.02.05                                                                                                                                                              This is what the front of the package for the catheter adapter looks like.                                                                                               2015-12-02 01.01.59                                                                                                                                                              The picture on the left shows the back of the packaging for both the 10 ml syringe and the catheter adapter. The picture on the right shows the syringe with the adapter attached to it.                                                                                                                                                                                                      2015-12-02 01.02.24 2015-12-02 01.03.21                                                                                                                                          I hope you will find at least one or two of these hacks to be useful for you.

101 Uses For Coconut Oil

The differences in refined coconut oil and unrefined coconut oil.

Refined coconut oil as defined by Google;Refined coconut oil refers to coconut oil that has been bleached, and deodorized. The oil is derived from dried coconut meat known as copra.

Unrefined coconut oil as defined by Google; Unrefined coconut oil is often referred to as “virgin” or “pure” coconut oil. It is coconut oil extracted from fresh coconut meat rather than dried. The fresh coconut meat undergoes one of two processes: wet milling or quick drying.

When I Googled wet milling of coconut, this was the results;  Virgin Coconut Oil is derived from the fresh meat or kernel of a mature fruit of coconut rather than the sun dried coconut meat known as copra. Virgin Coconut Oils are produced one of two ways: Quick drying of fresh coconut meat, which is then used to extract the oil by mechanical means.Wetmilling method.

When I Googled quick drying of coconut, this was the results; Virgin Coconut Oil is derived from the fresh meat or kernel of a mature fruit of coconut rather than the sun dried coconut meat known as copra. Virgin Coconut Oils are produced one of two ways: Quick drying of fresh coconut meat, which is then used to extract the oil by mechanical means. Wet-milling method.

They are basically the same, just different words are in bold type for each different query. Just thought these definitions would be helpful when reading about this hack that I found and copied and pasted here.

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101 Uses for Coconut Oil

Katie – Wellness Mama

Coconut 101 Uses for Coconut Oil

I’ve said before that I am with coconut oil like the dad in “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” is with windex… I use it for everything. Right now, I have a five gallon bucket of it sitting next to my desk because we use so much and I don’t have anywhere else to keep it…

If you’d like to learn more about the benefits of coconut oil, the Virgin Coconut Oil Book is a great resource and you’ll receive a free copy if you order anything from this company and it is your first time ordering (no need to order the book, it will add to cart automatically if you use this link and it is your first order).

Today, I’m sharing my top 101 (yes 101!!) uses for coconut oil:

Uses for Coconut Oil

  1. In cooking as a great oil with a high smoke point. Great for baking, stir-frys or as a dairy free replacement to butter.
  2. Taken supplementally for daily energy.
  3. As a coffee creamer when emulsified into coffee (The only way I’ll drink coffee)
  4. On the skin as a basic lotion
  5. In homemade lotion bars for soft, smooth skin
  6. In homemade deodorant or deodorant bars
  7. As an eye-makeup remover
  8. As a cloth diaper safe diaper cream (just rub on baby’s bottom)
  9. In making your own Remineralizing Toothpaste
  10. To lighten age spots when rubbed directly on the skin
  11. To prevent stretch marks during pregnancy
  12. To support healthy thyroid function
  13. In homemade Mayo without the high PUFA vegetable oils
  14. To help increase sun tolerance and avoid burning
  15. As a naturally SPF 4 sunscreen
  16. In homemade lotion recipes
  17. To get rid of cradle cap on baby- just massage in to head, leave on for a few minutes and gently rinse with a warm wash cloth
  18. Topically to kill yeast or yeast infections
  19. As a delicious tropical massage oil
  20. It’s high Lauric acid and MCFA content helps boost metaboism
  21. A tiny dab rubbed on your hands and then through hair will help get rid of friz
  22. As an intensive nighttime facial moisturizer
  23. Mixed with equal parts sugar for a smoothing body scrub (use in the shower)
  24. Rubbed on lips as a natural chap stick
  25. Topically, can help skin heal faster after injury or infection
  26. Directly on the perineum to help heal after birth
  27. As an incredibly intensive natural conditioner- Rub into dry hair, put a shower cap on and leave for several hours.
  28. On feet to fight athlete’s foot or toe fungus
  29. In place of Lanolin cream on nursing nipples to sooth irritation (also great for baby!)
  30. Can help sooth psoriasis or eczema
  31. There is some evidence that regular ingestion of coconut oil can help prevent or reverse Alzheimers
  32.  With apple cider vinegar as a natural treatment for lice that actually works
  33. In natural Homemade Sunscreen
  34. In healthy brain boosting snack for kids like Coconut Clusters
  35. In a filling and energy boosting Brain Powder Smoothie
  36. Rub coconut oil on the inside of your nose to help alleviate allergy symptoms
  37. Nursing moms can take 3-4 tablespoons a day (and Vitamin D) to increase milk supply and nutrients
  38. There is some evidence that coconut oil helps digestion and may even kill intestinal parasites or yeast
  39. Mix a tablespoon with a tablespoon of chia seeds for an all-day energy boost (do NOT take this at night!)
  40. Can help improve insulin levels
  41. Oil pulling with coconut oil and a drop of oregano oil helps improve gum health
  42. Can help improve cholesterol ratios
  43. Blend a tablespoon into hot tea to help speed recovery from cold or flu
  44. In Homemade Natural Bug-Off Lotion Bars
  45. As a replacement for vegetable oils in any recipe
  46. Better for high-temperature cooking than olive or vegetable oils
  47. Can help reduce appearance of varicose veins
  48. After initial heat is gone, can help speed healing of sunburn
  49. Is an immediate source of energy when eaten and isn’t stored as fat
  50. As a natural personal lubricant that won’t disturb vaginal flora
  51. As a naturally antibacterial skin cream
  52. In natural homemade diaper cream
  53. As a natural shave cream and after shave lotion
  54. When used consistently on skin it can help get rid of cellulite
  55. To season cast iron skillets
  56. It’s anti-inflammatory properties can help lessen arthritis
  57. Can reduce the itch of mosquito bites
  58. Can help resolve acne when used regularly
  59. Can be rubbed into scalp daily to stimulate hair growth
  60. I’ve used in kids ears to help speed ear infection healing
  61. On split ends to de-frizz
  62. A small amount can be rubbed into real leather to soften and condition (shiny leather only… test a small area first)
  63. By itself as a great tanning oil
  64. Mixed with salt to remove dry skin on feet
  65. Can help speed weight loss when consumed daily
  66. Can help improve sleep when taken daily
  67. Can be used to speed healing of fungal infections when taken internally and used externally
  68. A tablespoon melted into a cup of warm tea can help sooth a sore throat
  69. To help sooth the itch of chicken pox or poison ivy
  70. It has been shown to increase absorption of calcium and magnesium
  71. Internally as part of the protocol to help remineralize teeth
  72.  Some evidence shows that the beneficial fats in coconut oil can help with depression and anxiety
  73. By itself as a natural deodorant
  74. By itself or with baking soda as a naturally whitening toothpaste
  75. For pets struggling with skin issues when used externally
  76. Some evidence suggests that the beneficial fats in coconut oil are helpful for those with Autism
  77. In homemade vapor rub
  78. As a safe cooking oil for deep frying
  79. A tablespoon taken before each meal can help improve digestion
  80. Can be taken in warm ginger tea to sooth heartburn or nausea
  81. As a completely natural baby lotion
  82. On hands after doing dishes to avoid dry skin
  83. Mixed with catnip, rosemary or mint essential oils as a natural bug repellent
  84. Can be used on mom’s nipple and baby’s mouth to help treat thrush
  85. Many use it as an anti-aging facial moisturizer
  86. Use to make coconut cream concentrate for a brain boosting snack
  87. Can be used internally and externally to speed recovery from UTIs
  88. When taken regularly, it can help fight candida
  89. When taken regularly, it can boost hormone production
  90. Can relieve the pain of hemorrhoids when used topically
  91. Can boost circulation and help those who often feel cold
  92. On cuticles to help nails grow
  93. Rub into elbows daily to help alleviate dry, flaky elbows
  94. Add to smoothies to give them a nutritional boost
  95. Internally during pregnancy to help provide baby necessary fats for development (especially when taken with Fermented Cod Liver Oil)
  96. In any recipes where vegetable oils are used
  97. Whipped with shea butter for a soothing body balm
  98.  One reader swears by using coconut oil to treat yeast infection. She suggests soaking a tampon in it and inserting the tampon for a few hours.
  99. Naturally clears up cold sores
  100. Ingesting coconut oil daily can help with allergy symptoms
  101. Ingesting coconut oil daily can increase mental alertness
You can also check out my recipe index or Start Here Page for many more recipes that use coconut oil!

 What Kind of Coconut Oil?

For external uses, expeller pressed or other types of refined coconut oil will work, but for internal use, an unrefined virgin coconut oil is best. This book provides more information about the benefits of coconut oil and the difference in the types of coconut oil.

I also love that this company supports small family farms in the Philippines. We order in five-gallon pails, which is more expensive up-front but which saves a lot of money in the long term.

My husband and I both take about 4 tablespoons a day and the kids get a couple tablespoons in food, smoothies, or hot herbal tea.

83 Recipe Substitutions

The following blog by Kelly Bagnasco tells about substitutions of things you never thought about, in many different areas you never even considered, such as:

BAKING – substitutions for flours, cooking oils, and even sugar.                                             On STOVE-TOP – substitutions for different veggies when cooking on stove the top.            MEALS – substitutions for items such as lettuce, yogurt, and others.                                     SNACKS – substitutions of different items in snacking ingredients.                                          SEASONINGS – substitutions for salt, making your own dressing, making own fruit syrup.  DRINKS – ways to make a soda substitute.                                                                            ALCOHOL – switching different wine colors.                                                                           COOKING METHODS – oven or pan frying over deep frying, or steaming instead of boiling.

She goes into different levels of explanation for the different areas and items. Some are very interesting. Hope you find them to be very helpful.

Kelly Bagnasco is a great resource for many things, These include great recipes, handy DIY projects, and life hacks that tell about numerous uses for many things. She has given me permission to use any of her posts that I think would be useful for my readers. She has been a blogger that I have followed for years. I even have made a website just for many of her great tips and information about the various uses for things from foods to everyday items that most people have around the house. You will see many of her posts on this website. She is so concise that there is not much else I could say to enhance any of her posts.
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83 HEALTHY FOOD SUBSTITUTIONS THAT ARE AWESOME!!!
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BAKING:

1. Black beans for flour
Swapping out flour for a can of back beans (drained and rinsed, of course) in brownies is a great way to cut out the gluten and fit in an extra dose of protein, Plus, they taste great. When baking, swap out 1 cup flour for 1 cup black bean puree (about a 15oz can).
2. Whole wheat flour for white flour
In virtually any baked good, replacing white flour with whole wheat can add a whole new dimension of nutrients, flavor, and texture. Because whole wheat includes the outer shell of the grain, it also provides an extra punch of fiber, which aids in digestion and can even lower the risk of diabetes and heart disease. For every cup of white flour, substitute 7/8 cup of whole-wheat.
3. Unsweetened applesauce for sugar.

Using applesauce in place of sugar can give the necessary sweetness without the extra calories and, well, sugar. While one cup of unsweetened applesauce contains only about 100 calories, a cup of sugar can pack in more than 770 calories! This swap is perfect for oatmeal raisin cookies. Pro tip: You can sub sugar for apple sauce in a 1:1 ratio, but for every cup of applesauce you use, reduce the amount of liquid in the recipe by 1/4 cup.4. Unsweetened applesauce for oil or butter

Don’t knock this one till you’ve tried it. The applesauce gives the right consistency and a hint of sweetness without all the fat of oil or butter. This works well in any sweet bread, like banana or zucchini, or in muffins (like in these low-fat blueberry muffins) — and even with pre-boxed mixes! On your first try, only try swapping out half the fat (so a recipe using 1 cup of oil would use 1/2 cup oil and 1/2 cup applesauce). If you can’t tell the difference with that swap, try swapping a bit more of the fat next time around.

5. Almond flour for wheat flour

This gluten-free switch gives any baked good a dose of protein, omega-3s, and a delicious nutty flavor. Check out these classic butter cookies for a simple example. A word of advice: almond flour is much heavier than other baking flours, so when subbing go 1/4 cup at a time (so 1 cup wheat flour would become 3/4 cup wheat flour and 1/4 cup almond flour). Or, if it’s all or nothing for your recipe, remember to increase the amount of rising agent (by about 1/2 teaspoon per cup of almond flour added) to account for the extra weight.

6. Avocado puree for butter

They’re both fats (albeit very different fats) and have nearly the same consistency at room temperature. The creaminess and subtle flavor of the avocado lends itself well to the texture of fudge brownies and dark chocolate flavorings. Check out this recipe for perfect proportion guidelines. It can take some experimenting to get this swap perfect, but generally, using 1 cup of avocado puree per cup of butter works.

7. Brown rice cereal with flax meal for Rice Crispies

Brown puffed rice has the same texture as conventional white rice, but with half the calories. The flax adds extra fiber, omega-3 fatty acids, and phytochemicals to the mix without compromising flavor!

8. Marshmallow Fluff for frosting

Replacing the fat and sugar in frosting with marshmallow achieves the perfect consistency with many fewer calories. While two tablespoons of marshmallow has just 40 calories and 6 grams of sugar (and no fat!), the same amount of conventional frosting can pack up to 100 calories, 14 grams of sugar, and 5 grams of fat. Need we go on?

9. Natural peanut butter for reduced-fat peanut butter

While they may appear better than traditional Skippy or Jiff, reduced fat versions of peanut butter can actually have more sugar — and an extra-long list of artificial additives— than the classics. Natural peanut butter (preferably unsalted) provides the same sweetness without call the extra junk.

10. Vanilla for sugar

Cutting sugar in half and adding a teaspoon of vanilla as a replacement can give just as much flavor with significantly fewer calories. Assuming the recipe originally calls for one cup of sugar, that’s already almost 400 calories cut out! You can’t sub this one in equal ratios, but next time you’re whipping up some cookies, try cutting 2 tablespoons of sugar and adding an extra 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract.

11. Mashed bananas for fats

The creamy, thickening-power of mashed (ripe!) banana acts the same as avocado in terms of replacing fat in baking recipes. The consistency is ideal, and the bananas add nutrients like potassium, fiber, and vitamin B6. One cup of mashed banana works perfectly in place of 1 cup or butter or oil!

12. Nut flours for flour

A word of caution: Nut flours don’t rise the same way as wheat flour so an additional rising agent might be needed when replacing more than ¼ cup of wheat. Many gluten-free blogs detail how to streamline nut flour-based baking. And while these flours are typically higher in calories and fat, they also have more fiber and protein. Nut flours do tend to be heavier than classic wheat, so make sure to up the amount of baking powder and baking soda in the recipe so the dough can rise as normal. Another option is to replace only part of the flour in a recipe with nut flour!

13. Coconut flour for flour

High in fiber and low in carbohydrates, coconut flour is a great partial substitute for wheat flour in baking recipes. Be careful, though — using more than half a cup at a time could allow the flour’s bitterness to take over. Substitutes can be tricky in baking, so when using coconut flour, be sure to add an equal amount of extra liquid! In baked goods, you generally want to substitute only 1/4 to 1/3 cup of coconut flour for 1 cup of wheat flour. (Take a look at this easy-to-understand chart for more specific substitution instructions!)

14. Meringue for frosting

Made from just egg whites and sugar, meringue can be a great fat-free substitution for traditional frosting. Feel like going a step further? Take a torch to it. Lightly charring the edges of the meringue can add a nice caramelized flavor. (Not to mention a cool visual effect!)

15. Graham crackers for cookies (in pie crusts)

Who doesn’t love a fresh baked cookie-crust pie? Next time, refrain from the traditional sugar or Oreo cookie crust and grab the graham crackers. Reduced-fat graham crackers offer the same consistency and flavor with about half the calories of the conventional options.

16. Evaporated skim milk for cream

It’s the same consistency with a fraction of the fat. Evaporated milk tends to have a bit more sugar (only about 2 grams), but the major drop in fat content is well worth the switch. This substitute is an even swap, too (1 cup cream = 1 cup evaporated milk)!

17. Stevia for sugar

The natural sweetener stevia is lower in calories and up to 300 times sweeter than sugar. But watch the grocery bill — this fashionable sweetener can also cost up to 5 times as much as granulated sugar. Since it’s so much sweeter, swap with caution: A recipe calling for 1 cup of sugar should be swapped for 1 teaspoon liquid stevia (or about 2 tablespoons stevia powder).

18. Prunes for butter

In brownies and other dark baked goods, prune puree makes for a perfect butter substitute while cutting more than half the calories and fat. Combine 3/4 cup prunes with 1/4 cup boiling water, and puree to combine. Sub in equal amounts in most dark baked good recipes!

19. Cacao nibs for chocolate chips

News flash: Those chocolate chips actually start out as cacao nibs — the roasted bits of cocoa beans that then get ground down and turned in to chocolate. Opting for these unprocessed (or at least less processed) morsels cuts out the additives and added sugar in chocolate, while also delving out a healthy dose of antioxidants.

20. Chia seeds for butter

These funny lookin’ little seeds are good for more than just growing countertop pets. Combine 1 tablespoon chia seeds with 9 tablespoons water, let sit for 15 minutes, and you get a gel that’s the perfect consistency to stand in for fat in baking recipes. One word of caution: don’t try to cut out all the fat with this substitute — it works best when subbing an equal amount of this mixture for half of the fat in a recipe.

21. Chia seeds for eggs

Surprise! Combining 1 tablespoon chia seeds with 1 cup of water left to sit for 15 minutes yields a perfect 1-to-1 egg substitute for baking. (But we probably wouldn’t suggest subbing chia for butter and eggs in the same recipe!)

22. Flax meal for eggs

This one’s an old vegan trick. Mix 1 tablespoon ground flax seeds (aka flax meal) with 3 tablespoons of warm water and whisk with a fork to combine. Now let it sit in the fridge for 5-10 minutes before subbing for 1 egg in any baked recipe. Voila!

STOVE TOP:

23. Brown rice for white rice

When white rice is processed, the “brown” bran layer gets stripped away, cutting out essential nutrients (like fiber). Opt for brown rice for a fuller nutritional profile.

24. Quinoa for couscous

While couscous is made from processed wheat flour, quinoa is a whole-grain superfood packed with protein and nutrients. Bonus points: They have almost the exact same texture.

25. Zucchini ribbons for pasta

Thin strips or ribbons of zucchini are a great stand in for carb-packed pastas. Plus, it’s one excuse to skip the boiling — simply sautee for a few minutes until soft.

26. Olive oil for butter

When cooking eggs, this simple switch is a great way to cut down on saturated fats while getting a healthy dose of essential omega-3 fatty acids.

27. Turnip mash for mashed potatoes

While one cup of mashed potatoes made with whole milk racks up about 180 calories (and that’s before the inevitable salt and butter), a cup of mashed turnip (which doesn’t need milk or butter to get that creamy consistency) has only 51 calories. Add some fresh herbs in place of the salt and it’s a much healthier stand-in for classic mash.

28. Grated steamed cauliflower for rice

Cut both calories and carbs with this simple switch. The texture is virtually the same, as is the taste.

29. Mashed cauliflower for mashed potatoes

Just like the turnip mash, mashed cauliflower has only a fraction of the calories of potatoes and it’s nearly impossible to taste the difference. Got picky eaters at the table? Try mixing half potato, half cauliflower.

30. Rolled oats for breadcrumbs

While breadcrumbs can pack extra sodium, using rolled oats seasoned with herbs is a great way to sneak another whole grain into any meal.

31. Dry beans for canned beans

Canned beans are convenient, sure, but they also tend to have excess sodium and plenty of preservatives. Plus, even though the canned versions are dirt cheap, dried beans are even cheaper! It may take a little more work (just some simple soaking and boiling), but this switch is still well worth it.

32. Prosciutto or pancetta for bacon

Bacon is often the go-to for that smoky flavor in savory dishes (and even in some sweet ones). But opting for a few slices of prosciutto or pancetta can help cut both calories and fat. While bacon has about 70 calories and 6 grams of fat for two slices, prosciutto has just 30 calories and 4 grams in an equally weighted sample.

33. Two egg whites for one whole egg

One egg yolk holds more than half the recommended daily cholesterol for the average adult. Trading out the yolk for a second white will cut out the cholesterol while doubling the protein. If making a dish that requires more eggs, keep one to two yolks for their rich vitamins A, E, D, and K content, but consider swapping out the rest.

34. Whole wheat pasta for regular pasta

Just as with bread, whole wheat pasta beats regular with a higher fiber content and about 50 fewer calories per serving (depending on the brand).

35. Crushed flax or fiber cereal for bread crumbs

Crushing a fiber-rich cereal and mixing it with some herbs makes an easy lower-sodium substitution for traditional breadcrumbs.

36. White-meat, skinless poultry for dark-meat poultry

The biggest chicken debate to date: white meat vs. dark meat. And the white meat has it beat — lower in calories and fat, higher in protein and iron.

37. Olive oil spray for olive oil from the bottle

Oil glugs out of the bottle, leading to overly-greasy dishes. Using a spray bottle is a great way to cut down on oil while still getting the non-stick benefits. A little mist is all that’s needed!

38. Egg Beaters for egg yolks

A solid substitution for many egg dishes (like omelets or frittatas) — and even for something more complicated, like Hollandaise sauce.

39. Bison for beef

Higher in B vitamins and lower in fat, bison is a great substitute for the ol’ beefy standard. (When available, of course.)

40. Ground Turkey for ground beef

Ground turkey (or chicken) is a great substitute for ground beef to cut down on saturated fat and calories. Reminder: Because of the lower fat content, ground poultry often ends up drier than beef, but a few tablespoons of chicken stock can solve the problem in a snap!

41. Quinoa and ground turkey for rice and ground beef (in stuffed peppers)

More protein and antioxidants in the quinoa and less fat in the ground turkey make this an all-around healthier option for this popular side dish.

42. Coconut milk for cream

Coconut milk is a great substitute for heavy cream in soups and stews. And don’t be turned off by the word “coconut” — it doesn’t taste like the sweetened shredded kind!

MEALS:

43. Spaghetti squash for pasta

Roasted and pulled apart with a fork, spaghetti squash is a great low-carb and lower-calorie substitute for pasta. One squash will make between two and three servings.

44. Greek yogurt for sour cream

Half the fat and calories, yet the taste and texture are virtually identical. Plus, nonfat Greek yogurt offers an extra dose of lean protein.

45. Arugula, romaine, spinach, and/or kale for iceberg lettuce

All greens are not created equal. Darker greens usually mean more nutrients like iron, vitamin C, and antioxidants. Sorry, iceberg’s just not cutting it anymore — go out and get some grown-up greens.

46. Pita for bread

One 4-inch whole-wheat pita runs around 80 calories and only 1 gram of fat (though there is some variation from brand to brand). Two slices of whole-wheat bread typically comes in at around 138 calories!

47. Greek yogurt for mayo (in tuna/chicken salad)

Add some herbs and a squeeze of lemon juice, and they’ll taste almost identical. Plus, this swap will save on calories and fat, and provide an extra dose of protein.

48. Plain yogurt with fresh fruit for flavored yogurt

Pre-flavored yogurts often come packed with extra sugar. To skip the sugar rush without sacrificing flavor, opt for plain yogurt (or better yet, plain Greek yogurt) and add fresh fruit and/or honey or agave for a hint of sweetness.

49. Nutritional yeast for cheese

The taste and texture are a little bit different, but the creamy gooiness is pretty comparable. Instead of topping that taco with cheddar, try a sprinkle of nutritional yeast for a cheesy flavoring with much less fat.

50. Lettuce leaves for tortilla wraps

It’s not a perfect swap, but forgoing the carbs for fresh lettuce is a fun (and easy) switch that can lighten up any wrap or taco dish.

51. Corn tortilla for flour tortilla

Half the calories and fat. ‘Nuff said.

52. Nuts for croutons (in salads)

Every salad needs that extra crunch. But rather than getting the extra carbs (and often fat and sodium) that come with croutons, try some lightly toasted slivered almonds, pecans, or walnuts.

53. Whole wheat bread for white bread

You’ve heard it all before, but it’s just that important! Whole-grain wheat beats out processed white with a complete nutrition profile and better flavor and texture.

54. Avocado mash for mayo

Half a mashed avocado is a great substitute for mayo on any sandwich. Both give some moisture, but avocado packs a big dose of vitamin E and cholesterol-checking monosaturated fat. And while a typical two-tablespoon serving of mayonnaise has about 206 calories and 24 grams of fat, half an avocado has only 114 calories and 10.5 grams of fat.

55. Sliced tomatoes for tomato sauce (on pizza)

Cut out the extra sodium, sugar, and preservatives by replacing jarred tomato sauce with fresh sliced tomatoes. The texture is a bit different, but the flavor is much more vibrant and fresh!

56. Frozen or Fresh Fruits for canned fruit

Cut down on excess sugar and preservatives by choosing fresh or flash-frozen varieties.

SNACKS:

57. Veggies for pita (as a dipping tool)

Forget the pita. Fresh veggies work as killer dippers with hummus and contain both fewer carbs and more vitamins.

58. Cauliflower puree for egg yolks (in deviled eggs)

For that devilish Southern favorite — deviled eggs — try replacing half the yolks in the filling with cauliflower puree. The taste remains the same, as does the texture, but without the extra dose of cholesterol.

59. Quinoa for oatmeal

Cooked with milk (cow, almond, hemp — whatever’s on hand) and some cinnamon, quinoa makes a perfect protein-packed hot breakfast.

60. Edamame hummus for regular hummus

While hummus might look innocent from the sidelines, it’s on our list of potential dangerfoods, packed with more than 50 calories in two tablespoons. That’s why switching to an edamame-based hummus can help reduce the danger (read: fat and calories) while still providing a delicious dip.

61. Kale chips for potato chips

Who would’ve guessed that a leafy green could make such delicious chips? When lightly tossed in olive oil and some seasoning (salt and pepper, paprika, or chili powder work well) and baked, these curly greens turn into a delightfully delicate crunchy snack with less fat than the classic fried potato chip.

62. Dark chocolate for M&Ms (in trail mix)

The problem with most trail mixes? They pack in the sugar-filled, candy-coated chocolate and dried fruit. Instead, make your own trail mix with unsalted nuts and dark chocolate bits (lower in sugar), which are high in free-radical-fighting flavonoids — a benefit that completely outweighs that candy-coated sweetness.

63. Popcorn for potato chips

Lower in calories and fat, natural popcorn without pre-flavored seasonings is a great snack alternative to replace those oily, super-salty potato chips. Try made-at-home flavors by adding cinnamon, chili powder, or Parmesan.

64. Steel-cut oatmeal for instant oatmeal

Chewy and a little crunchy, these guys are nothing like their instant oatmeal cousins. While rolled oats are — literally — rolled into a flat grain, steel cut oats are diced whole grains that maintain more of their fiber-rich shell. Rich in B vitamins, calcium, and protein, steel-cut oats also lack the added sugar that often comes with instant varieties.

65. Banana ice cream for ice cream

No milk, no cream, no sugar… but the same, delicious consistency. It’s simple: freeze bananas, then puree.

66. Sweet potato fries for French fries

Opting for sweet potatoes rather than the traditional white adds an extra dose of fiber, and vitamins A, C, and B6. Plus, it cuts out roughly 20 grams of carbohydrates per one-cup serving. Just don’t overdo it!

67. Frozen Yogurt for Ice Cream

Picking frozen yogurt over ice cream can help cut down fat content!

SEASONINGS:

68. Low-fat cottage cheese for sour cream

They both add a creamy texture to many dishes, but sour cream is packed with fat while low-fat cottage cheese is packed with protein.

69. Pureed fruit for syrup

Both sweeten flapjacks or a nice whole-wheat waffle, but pureed fruit warmed on the stovetop with a bit of honey packs much less sugar than classic maple. Plus, it provides an extra dose of antioxidants and vitamins.

70. Herbs or citrus juice for salt

You heard it here first: Food doesn’t need to be salted to taste good! Fresh herbs and citrus juice can provide just as much flavor without the added risks of excess sodium intake.

71. Garlic powder for salt

Just like fresh herbs, garlic powder can provide a flavorful-punch without adding sodium. A word of warning, though: don’t mistake garlic powder for garlic salt.

72. Low-sodium soy sauce for standard soy sauce

The taste is virtually the same, but choosing a low- or reduced-sodium variety can cut down sodium intake by nearly half.

73. Homemade salad dressing for bottled dressing

By making dressing from scratch at home, it’s easy to cut out the added sugar, sodium, and preservatives typically found in pre-made dressings. Try mixing vinegar or lemon juice and oil in a 2:1 ratio and flavoring with spices like rosemary, thyme, oregano, and pepper!

DRINKS:

75. Seltzer water with citrus slice instead of soda

Instead of sugary sodas, opt for a glass of sparkling water with a few slices of citrus — grapefruit, lime, orange, and lemon all work well — for a little extra flavor.

75. Skim milk for whole or 2% milk

Fewer calories and fat with the same amount of protein makes this switch well worth it.

76. Cinnamon for cream and sugar (in coffee)

Cutting out the cream and sugar in favor of a sprinkle of cinnamon can cut up to 70 calories per cup. Plus, cinnamon can boost metabolism.

77. Unsweetened iced tea for juice or bottled teas

While delicious and convenient, bottled teas, juices, and sports drinks are packed with sugar and calories. When in the mood for something icy with a little flavor, opt for a home-brewed, unsweetened iced tea.

78. Americano for latte

Just by cutting the milk out of that daily latte in favor of hot water, the calorie count drops by more than 150. It’s a smart switch, especially by the fourth or fifth cup.

ALCOHOL:

79. Red wine for white wine

While white wine is usually lower in calories, red offers health benefits unmatched by the white stuff, including cancer-fighting compounds and natural cholesterol checks.

80. Soda water for juice (as a mixer)

Rum and coke. Cranberry and vodka. Sure, these sugary mixers take care of the inner sweet tooth. But try mixing liquor with soda water and a slice of fruit (or even just a splash of juice) and down goes the sugar (and calorie) count. Not inventive enough? Check out these 60 healthier cocktails.

81. Soda water for tonic water

Yes, it’s clear and bubbly, just like soda water, but tonic water is actually full of sugar. Adding plain soda water and a pinch of lime gives almost the same taste with 32 grams less sugar per 12 ounces.

COOKING METHODS:

82. Oven or pan-frying for deep frying

Yes, those chicken tenders are deliciously greasy, but by foregoing the oil bath for just a misting of oil in a pan or oven, it’s easy to cut fat without sacrificing flavor.

83. Steaming for boiling

While both are great options for meats and veggies, steaming is king because it removes fewer nutrients from vegetables. While boiling can leech out some of the better nutrients (hence why water turns green after boiling broccoli), steaming keeps all that green goodness inside the veggies.

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