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3 Salad Ideas to Make Your Meals More Appetizing

For health advocates, salads can stand alone as a complete meal. But for those looking to bulk up, salads are but appetizers to prelude the actual meal.

Here are three salad ideas to appetize any meal:

1. Greens and Barley Salad
To start off our list of salads, let’s start with a healthy one unless you’re looking to up your protein or veggie intake. For this, you’re going to need assorted greens which may include endive, radicchio and butter lettuce, carrots, cauliflower, vinegar, barley, honey, olive oil, salt, pepper, paprika and walnuts. Place assorted greens, carrots sliced into ribbons, cauliflower and barley in a serving dish. Prepare a screw-top jar and combine vinegar, olive oil, honey, paprika, salt, pepper and walnuts. Replace the top and shake well. Coat over the salad and top with walnuts.

2. Tuscan Bread Salad
For this one you will need fresh green beans, snap pea pods, asparagus, Italian bread, cherry tomatoes, small cucumber, olive oil, red onion, sweet peppers, Kalamata olives, basil leaves and red wine vinaigrette to be prepared separately aside from your salad. First off, prepare the beans by trimming off the ends and cut it into pieces of about 2-inches. In a saucepan, toss in asparagus, beans and pea pods in lightly salted water. After boiling, transfer veggies to a bowl of ice water. Once chilled, drain the water and let it stand. Next up, spread a thin line of oil in the bread. Toast the bread until lightly brown, using a grill or a broiler. Cool for a few seconds and tear bread into pieces sizing about to an inch per piece. Combine beans, bread, mixture, cherry tomatoes, cucumber, red sweet peppers, red onion, Kalamata olives and fresh basil. Pour the red wine vinaigrette over the tomato mixture and coat gently. Next up, mix remaining dressing over the tomato mixture. Toss again before serving, and add salt and pepper to your liking. For the red wine vinaigrette, place olive oil, red wine vinegar, Dijon-style mustard, garlic, salt and black pepper in a screw-top jar and shake well.

3. Tuscan Tuna Salad
For this salad you will need lemon, cannellini beans, albacore tuna packed in oil, red onion, arugula or mixed spring greens, grape or cherry tomatoes, salt and ground black pepper. Juice the lemon and set aside the peeling. Combine cannellini beans, tuna and onion in a bowl. Add the lemon, lemon juice, arugula and tomatoes. Toss gently. Season with salt and pepper.

These salads, along with most, can be adjusted to have more protein or more veggies. Just add more chicken or tofu then you’re good to go. Hope this list helped you plan out you’re lunch for the week. Enjoy those greens!

Fool-Proof Methods for Making Your Own Alkaline Water

Thinking of ways on how you could naturally boost your metabolism and decrease the acidity level in your bloodstream? If so, then think of incorporating alkaline water into your diet. But apart from investing on a rather pricy alkaline water ionizer, you can actually create this ionized drink right at the comforts of your home. Believe or not, you homemade remedy can be just as good – if not better – than some product brands in Singapore. So with that in mind, here are some of the common methods on how you could possibly alkalize your water at home.

Method 1: Determine the pH Level before Alkalizing the Water

• Check the pH Level of Your Water Beforehand

Be sure to check the pH level of your water before and after alkalizing it. This will tell you how much adjustment you need to make on your water. Tap water is typically has a pH level of 7, but the impurities found on the drink tend to tip the scale more into the acidic range. Alkaline water, on the other hand, has a pH level of eight or nine, making it an ideal drinking water for most of us.

• Purchase a pH Kit

You can find and purchase a pH kit at almost every health store in Singapore. Make sure that the kit you are buying comes with a pH colour chart and several pH strips for your water testing.

• Test Your Water Using a pH Strip

Allow your pH strip to sit for a moment, then compare its colour with the colours found on the chart. Take note of what your tap water’s pH level is and then alkalize it using the method of your choice. Once you are done alkalizing your water, its pH level should now be between eight and nine.

• Understand Your Water’s pH Level

Water that is above a seven on the pH scale is basic, while water below that is already considered acidic. You want your drinking water to be somewhere between seven and nine for it to be considered healthy and pure.

Method 2: Alkalize Your Water Using Certain Additives

• Add Baking Soda

Baking soda is known for having a high alkaline water content, making it a good additive to use when alkalizing your tap water. To use it, simply add 600 mg (1/8 tablespoon) of baking soda to an eight oz. glass of water. Be sure to vigorously stir or shake the mixture to ensure that it thoroughly mixes with the water. If you are on a low-sodium diet, however, health experts suggest that you use another method for alkalizing your water.

• Use Fresh Lemon Juice

Lemons are known to be anionic, which means your body will react with the anionic properties of the fruit, turning the tap water to alkaline water as your body digests it. All you’ve got to do is full one pitcher with clean water. Filtered water would be the best choice, but if you don’t have a water filter, tap water will do just fine. After that, slice the lemon into eights and add it to the water. Once you are done, let it sit overnight for eight to 12 hours at room temperature.

• Make Use of pH Drops

Just like pH kits, pH drops can also be purchased online or at some health food stores. These drops contain potent alkaline minerals, so make sure that you follow the directions indicated on the bottle about the number of drops you should put into your water. Just remember that the pH drops will only turn tap water into alkaline water, and not filter out chemicals like fluoride and chlorine.

Method 3: Use Filtration Systems

• Invest in a Water Ioniser

If you have the budget and don’t much time mixing solutions to create your own alkaline water, then investing on an alkaline water ioniser machine might be a good option for you. This filtration system works by electrically enhancing the water, and separating it into acidic and alkalized water. The latter makes up about 70 percent of the produced water and can be used for drinking; while the acidic water can be used for washing your body to kill any bacteria that is living on your skin.

• Buy an Ionizing Water Filter

Unlike an alkaline water ionizer, these filters are cheaper, easily transportable, and works similarly as a normal water filter. All you have to do is pour water into the filter and let it sit for a few minutes. The water is then sent through a series of filter, and after passes through these filters, it will sit in a pool of alkalizing minerals.

• Purchase a Reverse Osmosis Water Filter

Also known as a hyperfilter, a reverse osmosis water filter uses an especially fine membrane for its water filtration procedure. Its delicacy allows it to capture more elements than a regular water filter, which aids in completely alkalizing the water. These filters can be found and purchased at local hardware and home improvement stores in Singapore.

• Use pH Drops and Water Distillers

A water distiller works by boiling the water placed into them, destroying the bacteria and any other impurities found in tap water. It can slightly ionize your water, but to fully alkalize it, add in a few drops of your pH drops.

If you are already tired of filling your body with harmful toxins, then you should start alkalizing your beverages before consumption. Each of the aforementioned methods will help you enjoy the benefits of alkaline water, so be sure to choose one that best suits your budget and needs.

Most Protein Rich Meats


Bodybuilders or those looking to stay lean and fit always incorporate protein in their diet. One of the best sources of protein is meat. It’s not only one of the best sources but it is actually the tastiest source compared to other protein rich foods like legumes and dairy. And, as you may have noticed, meat is always in the best Singaporean dishes. As long as they are prepared in a healthy way, Singaporean dishes can actually be good meals for bodybuilders and fitness junkies. Without further adieu, here are some of the most protein rich meats.


  1. Pork Tenderloin

Tenderloins are cuts of meat that have less fat content and leaner meat in them. Despite considered as “red meat”, pork tenderloin is the healthiest cut of pork you can find because of the rich protein content in it. It’s a good cut of meat for any diet. And, a lot of Singaporean dishes use pork. You can actually swap ingredients and use pork tenderloin instead.


  1. Chicken Breasts

This is the staple meat when it comes to protein. A 4 oz. cut already contains 27 grams of healthy protein and very negligible amounts of fat. And, when it comes to chicken, the first dish you might think of is Hainanese curry rice, considered as Singapore’s national dish. You can swap out chicken thighs and other fatty cuts with chicken breasts for a healthier meal.


  1. Shrimp

Often disregarded in many diets, shrimp is a healthy source of protein with 18 grams per 4 oz and very few amounts of fat to go around. Shrimp is an easy type of meat to cook. You can steam it, stir fry, deep fry, or grill it.


  1. Turkey

Whether ground or not, turkey is one of the leanest protein sources around. There isn’t too much fat to go around the rich amount of protein it has. A single 3 oz. turkey breast already has the same amount of protein as a 4 oz. chicken breast. The downside to this is that turkey is often expensive.


  1. Grass-Fed Beef

Cows fed with grass are often more protein rich because of the protein they get from consuming grass. When choosing which cut of beef to buy, go for tenderloins, sirloins, and round cuts because they tend to have less fat than cuts like prime rib, porterhouse, or T-bone. Nonetheless, they contain pretty much the same amount of protein. You can choose to consume the fatter cuts if you don’t mind the extra fat.



Good Carbohydrate Sources


Don’t be fooled by some fitness junkies who say that carbs are bad for your diet. Carbs are actually essential to anyone looking to become fit and healthy, as they are the fuel that our brains and bodies need to function well. However, like fats and cholesterol, there are also good and bad carbs.

Foods like donuts, cakes, and white break are carb sources that turn into sugar faster than other carbs. Good carbs, on the other hand, are those that break down slower. This means that your body uses them as fuel for the entire day without the need for you to fuel up on more carbs. So here are some foods that contain good carbs.


Brown Rice


Brown rice has less sugar than its white counterpart. As we know, rice is a staple in any Asian country. Moreover, it contains a lot of fiber that helps improve the body’s metabolism. Although it’s a little more expensive than white rice, fitness junkies have made the switch from white rice to brown rice.




Berries have the most nutritious carbs among fruits. The best berry is considered to be the blueberry. Blueberries, aside from being a good source of carbs, also contain tons of extra vitamins and antioxidants not found in other fruits. That’s why blueberries are a staple for most healthy people.


Sweet Potato


Probably the best source of carbs, sweet potatoes have tons of vitamins and nutrients along with complex carbohydrates. Most of the fiber and beta-carotene is found in the skin. So you’d always have to cook and eat it with its skin on. Fiber, aside from helping metabolism, curbs our appetite. Simple starches are also found in sweet potatoes. They help repair bodies that have been pushed through workout or exercise.




When it comes to carb sources with fiber, nothing comes close to oats. Oats have tons of fiber in them to help curb a person’s appetite. That’s why most people eat oats for breakfast to help them stay full for a long time. Moreover, oats help in fighting bad cholesterol.




The king of post workout fruits, bananas have fast acting carbs to help repair muscles that have been broken down during a rigorous workout. Aside from the carbs, the rich potassium that a banana has will help in preventing muscles from further breaking down.


Wheat Bread


It has far less sugar and fat content than its white counterpart, which often has cream in it. Instead of using white bread for your sandwich, make the switch to wheat. You’ll hardly feel the difference in taste.


The Health Issues of Skewered Grill Pork

Singaporeans love street foods. One of the favourite street foods of Singaporeans is skewered grilled pork (or chicken). There is nothing wrong with that if you do not consume it always but if you ingest it all the time, you should be aware of its health effects. Grilling has health issues and it is time that you know them.


In Thailand, the Pollution Control Department (PCD) agency has warned the street stall owners and the people who are buying skewered grill pork that there are health issues accompanying it. PCD made some research and it found out that the volatile organic compounds (VOC) from hot grills is between 168 & 441 parts/million.

The amount of VOC (168 & 441 parts/million) is not that high compared to smoke emitted by incense and exhaust fumes but there is an effect. If you are exposed to VOCs for a long period of time, it will affect your health eventually. You have to be aware of the risks of fumes while it is early. Here are some risks of VOCs that you should look out:


  • Eye irritation: The smoke indeed can irritate the eyes. Prolonged exposure to fumes of grill can irritate the eyes or worse it will result to more serious issues. Eyes are important so it should be taken care of. Do not let the fume or smoke take the best of your eyesight.
  • Respiratory problems: When you inhale fumes or smoke, there is no doubt that your lungs are affected. You will notice that when you inhale fumes, you have difficulties breathing. It will suffocate you and it can lead to death. If you have respiratory problems, it is important that you go to your doctors right away so it can be attended.
  • Cancer: If you are fond of skewered grilled pork (or chicken), you have to know that it can lead to cancer. When you grill the pork for a long time at high temperature, there is a chemical that is produced that can lead to cancer. Carcinogens will be produced. Your consuming of such will increase your risk of cancer over time.

The skewered grilled pork (or chicken) is a principal meal in Asian countries. Not all food stall owners and their consumers are aware of the risks accompanying skewered products. Stall owners are afraid because PCD might shut them because of the recently discovered health effects but PCD assured the owners that they will not shut their source of living. They will instead consult with PHM (Public Health Ministry) to seek for more solutions.


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