A Beautiful Fruit Basket is the Perfect Gift

Greg Scott asked:

A fruit basket will brighten the day of someone in your life. Whether they are recovering from an illness or simply in need of a boost, they will really enjoy it!

Fruit gift baskets are typically made with various fruits organized with ribbons and  bows to decorate them. Customizing a fruit basket can be easy! Make the gift of a  fruit basket mean more by decorating it with things they like and the fruit they love!

If the person that you are going to give the fruit basket to loves strawberries and kiwi, fill it up with those two fruits and they are sure to love it. What is their favorite color? Chose ribbons in their favorite colors or pick some ornaments that fit the theme that you are going for to decorate the basket.

While other people are receiving the normal gift of flowers, you can give the gift of  a fruit gift basket and really surprise them! Flowers are nice to look at but they are  not as nice as a fruit basket. The fruit gift is an original gift.

As a gift for someone recovering from an illness, fruit can not only make them feel better by lifting their spirits. Fruit is full of essential vitamins that can aid them in feeling better and recovering more quickly from their illness.

As a gift to an office coworker, the fruit basket can be shared by many people. They can open the fruit basket and share it among their peers or take it home and share it with their family. They could also leave it at their desk and have a healthy snack just waiting on them whenever the need for one comes up.

Have you ever wanted to get a gift for your boss but are just not sure what to get him? He would not appreciate a flower bouquet as much as a female boss would. You are not sure if he is fond of a certain sport or team. Why not give him the gift of healthy fruit.

The fruit gift basket is a very versatile gift and will be appreciated and enjoyed by anyone who receives one. When you are considering gifts for that special someone or for that person that you do not know so well, consider the fruit basket. A gift basket designed particularly for someone is a very unique gift or just simply make it a collaboration of fruit. Either way, it is sure to be enjoyed!

Or for those who enjoy wine, you could consider a carefully chosen wine basket.

7 Healthy Tips For Your Kids Lunchbox!

Richard Marc asked:

Next time you pack your child’s lunchbox, take a look inside. How many different options of foods have you given your little one and what is the ratio of healthy food to junk food? It is so important to include a variety of healthy foods and snacks for your child to eat whilst they are at school. But sometimes it can be difficult to come up with new ideas for the lunchbox.

So to help, here are 7 healthy tips for your kid’s lunchbox:

1. Keep it healthy – Fill the lunchbox with a variety of healthy foods. Be sure to include plenty of fresh fruit, vegetables and try using a variety of different breads such as wraps or rolls using wholemeal or multigrain bread. Add protein fillers such as meats or fish and include dairy products.

2. Make it fun – place pieces of fruit in clear zip up bags and write a note or joke to your child on the front. This will make them excited about opening their lunchbox to see what note is left each day. Cut sandwiches in different shapes (quarters, circles, smiley faces).

3. Make it colourful – ensure there are plenty of fruit and vegetables in their lunchbox so it is colourful and healthy: – such as a ham and tomato sandwich, a fruit salad, vegetable sticks (carrot, cucumber), homemade muffin, cheese and crackers, juice, water.

4. Easy to eat – Cut up pieces of fruit for your child so it is easy for them to eat. Such as watermelon (cut into cubes), apples (quarters), kiwi fruit (circles), orange (quarters or peel the skin in a circle motion forming a long snake like ring that sits on the orange until your child is ready to eat it. Then they pull off the skin to eat the orange and the skin is in a snake ring – makes it fun for kids!)

5. Dunk & Dip! Cut up some cucumber, carrots or celery into small sticks and include cherry tomato. Then place all the vegetables into a container. In the middle of the container add a dip such as hommos or cheese. Make it fun for the kids, so they can dunk their food into the dip.

6. More than just cheese and crackers – When packing cheese and crackers as a snack option, opt for a cheese that you can cut yourself instead of pre-packaged. This way it gives you the freedom to choose a healthy cheese option and also to include add ons. Use a container from home and cut up some cheese and include cherry tomatoes, cucumber (cut into circles) and include crackers. That way the kids are getting more then just cheese and crackers.

7. Leave the junk out! – if you do not put junk food into your child’s lunchbox high chances are they won’t eat it! So leave out the junk and replace it with healthy foods such as fruit, vegetable sticks, yogurt, cheese or healthy muesli bars.

Herbal Eczema Treatment

Daichi Hoang asked:

Turning to mother nature for help with Eczema leads to successful results.

Eczema is a skin condition which affects the upper layers of the skin. There are several types of Eczema, but in general the symptoms are red rashes, dryness of the skin, flaking, cracking and blistering. Eczema often causes itching, which leads to sufferers scratching the affected areas which may lead to bleeding.

Eczema affects people mentally as well as physically. Young children and teens in particular may be concerned about their appearance at a time when social networking skills are very important.

Vitamin E – Nature’s Answer

Surprisingly, the best Eczema treatment is Vitamin E. Vitamin E is an antioxidant (prevents damage to cells from “Free Radicals” – molecules that form from external pollution) which has many benefits in skin care. It has been commonly used in skin care products to promote healing and reducing scarring, and is even said to assist in the prevention of skin cancer.

Vitamin E in Eczema treatment assists to relieve itchiness and dry skin, this is the most important step in the treatment of Eczema as it stops the person from scratching the affected area and making the condition worse. Along with the use of Eczema cream, the person or parent of the child should research into a few pointers below:

* Clothing – Try and wear clothing made of cotton or other naturally occurring fibers

* Diet – Make sure your diet consists of products which are known to be rich sources of Vitamin E (Spinach, Broccoli, Kiwi fruit, Mangoes)

* Detergents – Avoid detergents and soaps, and bubble bath for children

* Water – Drink plenty of water, it’s the source of life

There is an interesting article online which describes the results of a study submitted to the International Journal of Dermatology. The study was conducted to explore the benefits of Vitamin E in Eczema treatment. 96 people between the ages of 10 and 60 with moderate Eczema were tested over a 8 month period. Some were given Vitamin E, whilst others were given a placebo (fake sample). 60% of the participants that were given the Vitamin E sample reported a “great improvement” or near remission of their Eczema, whilst only 2% of the placebo group claimed the same. (Source: www.emersonecologics.com/Newswire.asp?id=350)

Herbal Remedy for Eczema – Our Recommendation

We recommend an all natural Eczema cream produced by Native Remedies. Eczema Cream is a 100% natural, safe herbal treatment for relief from symptoms including red, itchy and scaly skin; inflamed areas that may weep or bleed when scratched; blistering; cracked and painful skin; and risk of infection in severe cases. Regular use of Eczema Cream will reduce redness and dry skin, relieve discomfort and itching, prevent infection, and reduce scarring. The prominent ingredient of course, is Vitamin E.

See below for a link to the Total Herbal website for more information on how to naturally treat Eczema.

9 Great Tips On How To Combat Bad Breath

Susan Jan asked:

Millions of people all over the world suffer from bad breath or halitosis. Bad breath can badly affect your social life, your career prospects and even your self-esteem.

The main cause usually stems from poor dental hygiene, and also from bacteria that comes from left over food particles in the mouth. Strong smelling foods or items such as garlic and onion, alcohol and smoking, also contribute to bad breath.

Conventional remedies for halitosis include:

* Brush and floss your teeth at least twice a day. Make sure to also brush the gums, the tongue, roof of the mouth, and inside of the cheeks.

* After you eat, make sure to rinse out left over food particles in your mouth.

* Avoid strong smelling items such as coffee, alcohol or smoking.

Other than these common remedies, natural remedies such as a well balanced diet also helps, as a healthy digestive system reduces the level of odor-causing bacteria in your body:

* Gum disease causes bad breath. Taking vitamin C helps protect and heal your gums from damage and disease. Vitamin C is plentiful in strawberry, cabbage, orange, red pepper and kiwi fruit.

* Eating food rich in acidophilus such as yogurt helps to balance the bacteria in the intestine to a healthy level and thus reduce halitosis.

* Eating food that fights plague build-up also helps fight foul breath, such as cheese, peanut, celery and carrot.

* Eating less meat and more fiber such as vegetables and fruits help temporarily mask bad breath. Snack on fresh raw vegetables and fruits such as parsley, celery, carrot apple and pear. Parsley is effective because it contains chlorophyll, a chemical found in plants that is considered to be a natural breath freshener.

* Eat food rich in fiber to fight constipation. Your body absorbs a large amount of bacteria from a meat-laden diet. Fiber helps promote regular bowel movements that remove these toxins from your body that cause bad smelling breath. Food rich in fiber include pea, dried bean, brown rice, prune, fig, and wheat product.

* Drink a lot of liquids, at least eight cups of water each day, to keep your mouth hydrated, as saliva is a natural antibacterial and helps flush down food particles in your mouth.

Thus, maintaining a balanced diet is an effective way to ensure good bodily health, helps eliminate bad breath and keeps your breath smelling sweet.

Life on Blood Thinning Medication

Tan Chee Hee asked:

I have a mechanical valve implanted in Dec 2006 due to severe Mitral Valve Propalse. I am taking blood thinning medicine to avoid blood from clotting around my metal heart valve.

Currently, I am taking 4mg of blood thinning medicine daily.

There are many types of food & beverages & medication that can & will interfere with the effects of blood thinning medicine . Several times, I might experienced a sudden surge or drop in my INR, either due to a change in my diet, or a type of medication which I had taken.

For example, Green tea is high in vitamin k & counteracts the benefits of blood thinning medicine warfarin. Yet, Cranberry juice & Alcohol increase the effects of blood thinning medicine .

On the other hand, food rich in Vitamin K reduces the effects of blood thinning medicine significantly.

Dark, leafy green vegetables tends to contain higher amounts of vitamin K. Examples of high vitamin K vegetables are Kale, Spinach, Broccoli, Lettuce, Brussel sprouts, Cabbage, green onions. Sudden increase in these vegetables intake will reduce your INR significantly.

Also, fruits high in vitamin K include Dried Prunes, Avocado, Kiwi fruit, Blueberries & Blackberries etc.

To avoid excessive blood thickening, it is important to monitor our intake for high vitamin K food.

Due to warfarin narrow theraputic range, I have set up a web site, http://www.lifeonwarfarin.com to share my life experiences, of living on blood thinning medicine. I am also sharing other blood thinning medicine -related information which may be of interest to you.

My objective is to hope other warfarin users can better understand blood thinning medicine diets & side effects.

Discover The Permanent Solution To Bad Breath

Sally Evans asked:

Bad breath is a major problem faced by many people. Its embarrassing and impacts many areas of your life, including relationships, friendships and career. So, understanding the causes and finding remedies is important and would leave you free to enjoy life fully again.
The natural remedies to fight bad breath that most people first think of are improving their brushing and flossing routine. This is a good start, however, a well balanced diet can also play a big role in eliminating your problems of bad breath. A well balanced diet allows your digestive system to work efficiently and this can greatly reduce the amount of bacteria in your body that are responsible for bad mouth odour.

Also, an adequate amount of Acidophilus in your diet is very important. Studies show that an imbalance of bacteria in your intestines can contribute to your bad breath. Yogurts which are rich in live cultures can help in increasing the amount of acidophilus in your body, helping to fight your bad breath. Bad breath can also be caused by gums that are in poor health. Your gums can be protected from damage by Vitamin C, which also helps to speed up the healing process. Good sources of Vitamin C include cabbage, red peppers, strawberries, oranges, and kiwi fruit.
A further element to consider is replacing some or most of the animal protein in your diet. Replacing this with high fiber foods such as vegetables, fruits, lentils and beans could be a good remedy. Vegetables and fruits can help to cleanse your breath as they are high in fiber and contain large amounts of enzymes. I encourage you during your day to munch on raw vegetables and fruit such as apples, pears, carrots, and parsley sprigs. Parsley is a natural breath freshener because it contains chlorophyll. Chlorophyll is a chemical that keeps plants green and is considered to be a natural breath freshener. So, a quick and easy option, especially if you’ve just eaten garlic.

Your daily intake of water is also important to how fresh your breath is. You need to drink at least eight glasses of water each day so that your mouth is always moist. By doing this, you’ll also be flushing out the germs and bacteria that can hang around in your mouth from particles of food. Make sure you’re visiting your dentist regularly to be sure that gum disease or tooth decay isn’t an underlying factor of your bad breath. Keep in mind that Vitamin C is good for preventing gum disease.

One last thing that you can do is eat fiber rich foods to fight constipation. Studies show that regular bowel movements will remove those toxins from your body that can cause bad breath. I’m sure the thought of all that old stuff hanging around your body isn’t pleasant to you. When you eat large amounts of meat you absorb a lot of bacteria into your bloodstream which then passes into your lungs and is then exhaled as bad breath. High sources of fiber include brown rice, peas, figs, dried bean, wheat products, and prunes.

Discovering a permanent solution to your bad breath means you need to eat a balanced diet to make sure that your body is in good condition and working as it best. So, lets get started and fight your bad breath now. From what you’ve read, now decide, what specific actions are you now going to take?

How Can Vitamin C Reduce Wrinkles?

Marcus Ryan asked:

Recent research has shown a possible and credible link between consuming foods that are rich in vitamin C to reducing wrinkles and other signs of skin aging.

Also, these studies have found that diets that were high in fats and carbohydrates can lead to greater wrinkling and skin aging issues.

So what can you do to ensure enough vitamin C in your diet to keep the glow of youth shining on your skin?

Well, the first step is to know what the vitamin C rich foods are!

This doesn’t mean you have to eat so many oranges that your skin starts to look orange but it does mean that you should pay attention to foods that are higher in vitamin C and rotate them through your daily and weekly menu planning.

Foods that are rich in vitamin C and ultimately good for your skin include many of the following:

Citrus fruits (such as oranges, lemons, grapefruits, tangerines), paw paw, bell peppers, strawberries, cranberries, kiwi fruit, cantaloupe, broccoli, brussel sprouts, cabbage, guava, and tomatoes.

Most of us have very little problem working the fruits into our diets, especially with such delicious options but the veggies prove difficult for many.

Try eating salads that include broccoli and tomatoes at least twice a week for a little extra boost that doesn’t carry quite as many calories as some of the fruit selections.

You can also steam your broccoli and top it with a bit of soft cheese (the kids may even join you in enjoying this delicious treat) once a week, and cabbage rolls with carrot and tahini for lunch or a delicious treat will help get even more of the vitamin C you need into your system.

The trick is to make it an adventure rather than a chore. Use your imagination and prioritize. If you want youthful skin it is much less expensive to change your diet than to go through painful (to your wallet as well as your skin) Botox injections every few months. And as another bonus, these are foods that are good for you in other ways as well, such as helping your body fight off infections because of the antioxidants in them.

There are those that disagree with the findings of this study citing the fact that there are many factors that contribute to the formation of wrinkles. Some of these determining factors include genetics, sun exposure, and lifestyle choices such as smoking, alcohol consumption, etc.

But these studies are suggestive that our diet may be a factor in how young our skin looks.

So there you go.

You now know the benefits of vitamin C in our diet and their effects on our skin in having less wrinkles. And to get enough of this vitamin is easy. Simply have plenty of fruits and vegetables and enjoy looking years younger!

7 Day Balanced Healthy Diet Plan – Transform Your Body Once and For All

Alen I Green asked:

As the authors say, using this balanced healthy diet for one week, you will clear your body from toxins, stimulate work of bowel, increase vitamins levels, stabilize sugar level in blood and in addition lose about 8 pounds.

This balanced healthy diet contains all the necessary vitamins, minerals, is rich in fibre which stimulates digestion, intensifying the burning of fats, and cleans bowel from harmful products of metabolism.

Balanced healthy diet rules:

During the week you need to drink at least 2 litres of liquid each day.
Before going to bed you need to drink a glass of fat-free yogurt.

Prohibited products:

fat meat and meat products;
white bread and confectionery products;
pasta and grains (except oatmeal);
fat milk, cottage cheese, yogurt;
sugar and sweets;

Recommended products:

non-fat meat, chicken, fish;
any vegetables and fruits;
fat-free milk, yogurt, cottage cheese, cheese;
Grain bread;
vegetable oil (corn, olive, sunflower);

Sample menu for the week:

1st day
Breakfast – half a grapefruit, sprinkled with cinnamon, a piece of cheese, rye crackers, tea without sugar.
Lunch – vegetable soup, boiled chicken breast (100 g), carrot salad with corn oil, a glass of plum juice.
Snack – glass of natural yogurt with honey (1 spoon).
Dinner – oatmeal (with water) with dried or fresh fruit, 1 glass of yogurt.

2nd day
Breakfast – (kiwi, banana, raspberry) with natural yogurt.
Lunch – vegetable soup with crackers, salad (avocado, tomato, cucumber, lettuce leaves with lemon juice and olive oil) and a fresh peach.
Snack – herbal tea (1 glass).
Dinner – boiled fish (100 g), boiled potato, boiled courgettes with olive oil (100 g), tea.

3rd day
Breakfast – strawberries (100 g), fresh orange juice.
Lunch – vegetable soup, 2-3 boiled potatoes stuffed with tuna, cottage cheese and sweet corn, 2 fresh tomatoes, 5-6 fresh plums.
Snack – fresh fruit puree with natural yogurt.
Dinner – boiled chicken (100 g), boiled brown rice (50 g), salad of fresh vegetables, and a glass of warm milk.

4th day
Breakfast – muesli (30 g) with fat-free milk, fresh fruit, coffee.
Lunch – vegetable soup, boiled chicken, salad of cabbage and cucumber with fresh vegetable oil and lemon juice, apple juice (1 glass).
Snack – fresh fruit salad.
Dinner – oatmeal with honey and a piece of cheese, yogurt (1 glass).

Breakfast – salad of pears, apples, bananas with yogurt, crackers, coffee with milk.
Lunch – Vegetable soup, cauliflower and strawberries with fat-free milk.
Snack – sandwich: black bread with salad and pieces of avocado, orange juice (1 glass).
Dinner – 2-3 apples and natural yogurt, a piece of cheese, rye crackers, tea.

Breakfast – toast and roasted tomatoes with sprinkled parsley or celery, tea with honey.
Lunch – fish soup with vegetables, rye crackers, stewed beef liver (100 g) with garnish of boiled beets, tomato juice (1 glass).
Snack – muesli with natural fat yogurt.
Dinner – stewed liver (150 g), boiled potato (2 paces.), 2 tomatoes, tomato juice (1 glass).

Breakfast – a piece of ham, tomato, pineapple (100 g), warm milk (1 glass).
Lunch – Vegetarian vegetable soup with low fat sour cream, stewed fish (100 g), garnished with boiled beans and lettuce leaves, 2 apples.
Snack – a glass of fruit juice.
Dinner – boiled salmon (150 g), fresh salad of cabbage with olives with lemon juice, kiwi fruit and tea.

Don’t forget to consult your doctor before applying any of these daily diet plans.

Fruit Baskets Make Great Corporate Gifts

Aaron Vaughn asked:

It might seem like an easy chore on the surface, but picking out gifts to give corporate clients is actually never as simple as it appears. The things to consider can be mind-boggling and considering the wrong choice might just offend a client, the need to be cautious is always present. This is where a fruit basket can come into play.

Finding the right fruit basket for corporate clients, fortunately, isn’t as difficult as coming up with a gift idea in the first place. There are a number of companies all over the world that specialize in some pretty creative baskets and many of them can be accessed right over the Internet. Some companies will even allow their clients to custom order baskets with special requests included.

Here are some ideas for great fruit baskets to give corporate clients:

* Tropical baskets. If your clients are from colder climates in particular, these little tastes of the tropics are generally quite appreciated. Fruits inside can include such things as kiwi, bananas, strawberries, oranges, mangoes and more. These baskets can be jazzed up even more with the addition of tropical drink mixes, if appropriate, tropical flavored candies, flowers and so on.

* Northern fruit. Grapes, apples, cranberries, blueberries and more are the signature fruits of northern climates. Tastes of fall that are much appreciated the world over, these baskets can even include such favorites as maple syrup, wine and more to add a signature touch.

* Florida favorites. A Florida fruit basket, of course, should include oranges, but it can also include such other things as grapefruit, strawberries and key limes. These little limes found almost exclusively in the Florida Keys are known for the fantastic tasting pies they can make. Jazzing up Florida fruit baskets can be achieved with such additions as jellies and jams, wines and more.

* Hawaiian fruit baskets. Mango, pineapples, coconuts and more can make a basket based on this theme a real hit. Adding a signature touch to a Hawaiian basket can be a real blast, too. Some companies consider such things as special candy, jams, wines, chocolates and more.

Fruit baskets can be seen as pretty generic gifts, but considering the fact they can often be tailored to meet a company’s needs, there’s no reason to think one size has to fit all. Fruit baskets offer their buyers a number of advantages, too:

* Neutrality. This is important, especially over the holidays. It’s hard for a company to keep track of every client and their personal observances, so fruit baskets are a good choice for a heart felt, but none specific gift over the holidays.

* Variety. The number of fruits that can be included in a basket is pretty amazing. From tropical pineapples and oranges to grapes, berries and beyond, baskets can be real taste tempters.

* Modifications. Baskets are pretty easy to add special touches to, as well. They can be customized for each customer with the basic fruit remaining the same. If, for example, one client loves wines and another is a chocolate nut, those additions can be made accordingly in many locations.

* Pre-made choices that are fantastic. Many companies that create custom baskets also offer some preset choices, which generally are pretty spectacular.

Whether you want to create something unique or go with a standard basket, the choice is up to you.

Copyright (c) 2006

Fun Facts About the Kiwi Fruit

Jenny Styles asked:

Even though it has a larger size and an outer skin with fuzz, the kiwi fruit is really a berry. Chinese khans in ancient days used to consider the kiwi to be an aphrodisiac. Kiwis aren’t bothered by very many irritants, so crops don’t require much pest control. Kiwi pickers in California wear cotton gloves so they don’t bruise the kiwis.

The original name of the kiwi was the Chinese Gooseberry. It was originally grown in China, over seven hundred years ago. Later on, it was introduced to New Zealand, and then California. California kiwi were first grown in about 1960. The average kiwi fruit is about three inches long, and weighs about 2.5 ounces. Nearly ten percent of kiwi grown in California are grown organically.

The vines of the kiwi are deciduous. They will remain dormant from November until March, and the foliage falls off, which makes the pruners’ job easier. All of the pruning on a kiwi plant is done by hand. New leaves start coming out in March. The canes of the dormant kiwifruit are great for flower arrangements.

Kiwis grow like grapes, on shrubs like vines, which are trained to grow on trellises. Their height ranges from five and a half feet to six feet. The vines of the kiwifruit drink in water in the summertime. Each vine drinks about forty one gallons of water a day, in the growing season. Kiwi fruit continue to grow after they are picked. It will ripen as it heads off to the sales markets.

The kiwifruit was originally found in Northern China, in the Yangtze River valley. Missionaries took seeds to New Zealand in their travels, at the turn of the century. It became a popular plant there, and several vines were sent to California. Those very vines are still growing in the Chico Plant Introduction Station. Kiwi are also grown for resale in areas like Chile, South Africa and Italy.

The kiwi plant needs a relatively long growing season, including at least two hundred and forty days without frost. Therefore, there are many areas in the United States where it is not possible to grow them. When the kiwi vine is in its dormant stage, in the winter, it can withstand temperatures as low as 10 degrees F. But they need to be acclimated to the cold slowly, not hit with it all at once. If a sudden and deep freeze hits, the freezing may cause the vines to split, and the plant will die.

Temperatures in the freezing range will kill any kiwi fruit buds that are exposed, so care must be taken to select an area with a mild winter season.