Monday, July 25, 2016

Five Tips to Relieve Sinus Problems with Food

Do you suffer from a runny or stuffy nose often? Does it seem like you have sinus pressure and a headache almost every day? If so, you may have chronic sinusitis. Chronic sinusitis occurs when one or more of the sinus cavities become inflamed and irritated for several weeks. This medical condition can be caused by nasal polyps, a deviated septum or by a sinus infection. It usually affects adults; however, children can also get chronic sinusitis.

In order to better understand chronic sinusitis, you must first understand the location and the role of the sinuses. The sinus cavity contains air-filled spaces that are located in the forehead area (frontal sinus), the nasal cavity (ethmoid sinus) and the cheekbones (maxillary sinus). The sinuses make mucus that drains into the nose.

Sinusitis is simply inflammation of these sinus areas. Sinusitis is commonly caused by an infection. Many times chronic sinusitis develops after a patient suffers from a sinus infection. If the infection does not clear up, it can progress into chronic (long-term) sinusitis.

Risk Factors

If you suffer from nasal allergies, you may be more susceptible to developing chronic sinusitis. Allergies can cause the tissues inside the nose to swell and block the sinuses, which put them at a greater risk of infection and inflammation. A facial injury or abnormality can also increase your risk. Those with a poor immune system or those who suffer from inflammatory diseases are at an increased risk. Finally, smoking, diabetes, pregnancy and irritating substances can cause swelling in the sinuses.

What are the Symptoms of Chronic Sinusitis?

The primary symptom of chronic sinusitis is nasal inflammation. In addition to this, you may suffer from any of the following symptoms.

- Reduced sense of smell or taste

- Pain or inflammation in the eyes, forehead, nose or cheeks

- Thick, discolored nasal discharge

- Post nasal drip

- Nasal congestion that makes it difficult to breathe through the nose

- A dull ache in the upper jaw or teeth

- Ear pain

- Bad breath

- Fatigue

- Irritability

- Sore throat

- Cough that is worse at night

- Nausea

How Can Foods Improve Chronic Sinusitis?

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) states that the lifestyle you live and the foods you consume can either improve your health or cause it to decline. To better understand how food can improve your chronic sinusitis, you must learn which foods you should eat and those you should avoid if you are suffering from chronic sinusitis.

One of the primary causes of chronic sinus issues is inflammation. Consuming an anti-inflammatory diet may help decrease inflammation and boost your body’s ability to fight infection. There are a number of foods that will also help unclog your nasal passages and help you breathe easier.

Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Omega-3 fatty acids help to decrease inflammation throughout the body, including the nasal cavity. These healthy fats can be found in a variety of fish including whole sardines, cod, wild salmon. In addition to fatty fish, the following foods are rich in omega-3 fatty acids :
  • Flaxseeds
  • Walnuts
  • Basil
  • Oregano
  • Marjoram
  • Spinach
  • Chia seeds
  • Hemp seeds


Turmeric is a spice that is often used in Indian and Thai foods. This spice contains curcumin, which is known reduce inflammation and relieve pain in the body. If you do not enjoy this delicious spice, you can purchase a turmeric supplement. In addition to turmeric, there are many other spices that may help relieve the symptoms of chronic sinusitis, including ginger and Cayenne pepper. These two spices open the nasal cavities and reduce swelling.

Tart Cherries

Tart cherries are another food that can help reduce inflammation. In fact, studies have shown that tart cherries work 10 times better than an aspirin at reducing inflammation. In addition to tart cherries, there are a number of fruits that can help relieve sinus pressure and inflammation, including apples, pears and berries. All of these fruits contain antioxidants that help heal your body from the inside out.

Garlic and Onions

Onions contain chemical compounds and sulfur that offer antifungal and anti-bacterial protection. To help you better understand how onions can relieve sinus pressure, you must simply pick up an onion and cut it. Most of the time, your eyes and nose will begin to water. This watering will help clear the sinus passages and relieve pressure.

Garlic is another bulb that can help relieve chronic sinusitis. It contains the chemical compound, allicin, which offers broad spectrum anti-bacterial protection. Many people complain that consuming garlic can cause you to emit a garlicky body odor. Fortunately, there are odor-free garlic supplements that offer the same benefits of garlic without the smell.

Other Fruits and Vegetables

Finally, there are a variety of fruits and vegetables that can improve the symptoms associated with chronic sinusitis. These include:

- Avocados, which are rich in potassium and promote healing

- Pineapples, which contain bromelain and acts as an anti-inflammatory agent

- Tomatoes, which are rich in vitamin C to improve the immune system

- Broccoli, bean sprouts and asparagus, which are rich in vitamin C and calcium

- Dark leafy green vegetables, which are known to clear toxins from the body

All of the aforementioned foods contain antioxidants that increase immunity and omega-3 fatty acids that help to reduce inflammation. Consuming these foods will drastically improve your sinuses, improve your body’s defense mechanism and provide healing of your chronic sinusitis. 

Foods to Avoid

Just as certain foods can improve your health, there are certain foods that can negatively impact your health. The wrong foods can increase mucus production and cause inflammation throughout the body. The following list of foods can exacerbate the symptoms of chronic sinusitis:
  • Dairy products such as milk, ice cream and cheese
  • Food additives, flavorings and colorings
  • Fermented foods, such as sauerkraut, beer and wine
  • Sugary foods including soft drinks and desserts
  • Refined carbohydrates like pasta, white bread and rice
If you are looking to heal your body naturally, improve your immunity and relieve your sinusitis, why not follow the recommendations of Traditional Chinese Medicine and eat your way to health? By following the food recommendations listed above, you can improve your body’s defense mechanisms so it can better fight off infections and relieve inflammation throughout the body.

About Elizabeth McMillan

Elizabeth McMillan, MS, CNS is a board certified nutritionist at Rose Wellness Center in Northern Virginia.  She specializes in science-based nutrition therapy that focuses on preventative health and optimizing one’s wellness.  Elizabeth places a strong emphasis on the relationship between our food choices, lifestyle, and integrative wellness.

Friday, July 22, 2016

Celebrate National Ice Cream Month with Jack Nicklaus ( $100 Visa GC Giveaway)

Summer. A time for fun, memories, and much needed family time. Summers go by way to quickly and this summer was a particularly different one for us. See, since we moved at the start of summer from Florida to Minnesota it’s been a quiet one. The kids don’t know anyone yet, we don’t know anyone yet and we haven’t been able to enjoy our usually summer fun and adventures. This week I wanted to do something to bring a smile to my children’s faces and make some memories. And what’s that one feel good summer food that is sure to bring a smile to anyone’s face? Ice cream! And not just any ice cream, Jack Nicklaus Ice Cream!

This post brought to you by Schwan Food. Prize packs provided at no cost. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own and were in no way influenced. Your opinion may differ. 
Jack Nicklaus Ice Cream was developed in partnership with legendary pro-golfer Jack Nicklaus and The Schwan Food Company in 2015 with the goal of bringing families together with an affordable, delicious dessert. In celebration of us, of summer, and of smiles, we had an impromptu ice cream party featuring some amazing flavors of Jack Nicklaus Ice cream and some supper funny props.

Celebrating family and smiles with a delicious bowl of ice cream on a very warm day couldn't have turned out more perfectly. We loved the many varieties Jack Nicklaus Ice Cream has to offer, there was something for everyone. My little guy enjoyed picking out the whole pieces of black cherries from his ice cream, while my daughter indulged in some strawberry lemonade ice cream. My oldest and I both found ourselves in heaven with a little chocolate peanut butter swirl ice cream, with chocolate covered peanuts, peanut butter cups and of course peanut butter swirl mixed right in!  My husband, however, was intrigued with the Warm Spiced Butter Pecan flavor, with rippled Brown Betty sauce and spiced praline pecans. The flavor was bold and spot on... absolutely delish! 

Beyond being the perfect premium ice cream treat, the whole family will love, especially on those warm summer days, there is something else I really love about Jack Nicklaus Ice Cream.  A portion of each sale from Jack Nicklaus Ice Cream goes to support Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals.

Celebrate National Ice Cream Month (July) with Jack Nicklaus Ice Cream. Grab your favorite flavor and family and enjoy the time together. Watch a movie, take it outside and enjoy the weather, sit around the table and catch-up. Summer goes by too fast! Before we know it school will be back in session, kids will be heading off to collage, and those crazy fall schedules will be taking over. Take a minute and share a smile with Jack Nicklaus Ice Cream.

Win It: Helping bring families together Jack Nicklaus Ice Cream, in partnership with legendary pro-golfer Jack Nicklaus and The Schwan Food Company, is offering one lucky reader a prize package including:

  • A Jack Nicklaus tumbler cup
  • A JN golf ball
  • JN coupons
  • One $100 Visa gift card

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Save Big This Summer with Flipp #FlippFoodChallenge

5 kids plus summer vacation equals an empty pantry and wallet. I’m always looking for ways to get the best value on food, but have never been a very good at coupon or price matching. But what if there was an easy to use app that took the guess work out of couponing? What if there was an app that matched coupons for you, help your loyalty cards and gave you a chance to see all the deals in your area. An app like that would certainly be useful to those of us who are coupon vets, and those of us who just don’t know where to start.

This post brought to you by Flipp. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own and were in no way influenced. Your opinion may differ. 

Introducing Flipp

Helping you to find all your summer essentials for less is Flipp, the must-have FREE circular shopping app that makes saving on groceries (and other items) a breeze! This amazing app takes your location and supplies you with all current weekly circulars. It doesn't end there though, it also finds you the best deals on items you place on your shopping list, coupon matches, and allows you to print the coupons you need, and store loyalty cards and deals. 

With Flipp all the guess work is gone. I input my weekly shopping list, allow the Flipp app to show me current deals in the area and match up coupons for instant savings at checkout! 

Flipp Summer Challenge

This week I took the Flipp Summer Food Challenge! I loaded up my Flipp app with my shopping list, including the ingredients for a simple summer recipe, and headed to the store. Using the Flipp app, I had my coupons in order and matched with the best deals. I was also able to see, and note, which items on my shopping list were on sale and where.

I can’t say enough good things about the Flipp app, now I can keep the pantries stock and the extra change in my wallet, while me kids enjoy their favorite simple summer meals like sloppy cheddar Joe's! 


  • 2lbs Ground Sirloin
  • ½ cup red onion, diced
  • 2 gloves galic, diced
  • 1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 1tbsp. brown sugar
  • 1 can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 ½ cups cheddar cheese, shredded


  • Sliced tomatoes
  • Pickles
  • Extra onion


In a large skillet over medium heat add garlic and onion cooking until softened. Stir in Worcestershire sauce, chili powder, and brown sugar. Add chop meat, brown and drain. Add crushed tomatoes cooking until warmed throughout.

When your meat mixture is fully cooked remove from heat and stir in cheese. Serve mixture on rolls and top with your choice of condiments; pickles, onions, tomatoes, etc.

Thanks to Flipp we can save money and eat our favorites throughout the summer and beyond. What will you save with Flipp? Even if you’re not a couponer give FLipp a try. It’s incredibly simple to use and does 98% of the work for you. All you have to worry about is what you’ll do with all that money you’ll be saving!

Grap the free Flipp app here

Friday, July 15, 2016

Fussy Eaters: Tips And Tricks For Parents

If you’re the parents of a fussy eater, you know just how frustrating it can be. No matter how hard you try, your child just isn’t interested in eating better. This can make every mealtime a nightmare that ends in tears and tantrums. It might get so bad that you start to get concerned for their health because they aren’t getting a varied diet. It’s important to remember that you are not alone in this battle. Many parents face this eating dilemma, but thankfully it’s something that your child should grow out of. Until then, here are some useful tips and tricks to make mealtimes easier.

Remove distractions

It can be easy for your child to lose focus on eating when there are countless distractions around them. TV’s, games consoles and tablets can take all the attention from the meal you have prepared and make your kids disinterested. So before you serve your family meals, remove anything you deem to be distracting. Ask your family to place all electronic devices in a box or basket away from the table during the meal. Get into the habit of doing this every mealtime to set a good example. In addition to this, you should aim to serve your meals at the same time each day to develop a routine. This will help your child prepare for their meal times and know when they should be eating.

Never use bribes

It can be tempting to use bribes when your kids are acting out and not doing what they are told. But this can result in a power struggle and cause further distress and frustration. The more you try to force and bribe your child to eat something, the less likely they will be to try it. Rewarding them with dessert or candy can also promote unhealthy eating habits. So when introducing new foods, be patient and act calmly. Don’t be disheartened or upset if they choose not to eat something. Your child may need more exposure to certain foods before they become more familiar and less alien like.

Make eating healthy seem cool

Kids can be strongly influenced by others and what they consider to be cool. If they feel like all of their friends are eating certain foods, they won’t want to feel left out. So find a way to make eating healthy seem cool. You can show them recipes on social media such as this Facebook page for Hampton Creek. Youtube tutorial videos could be another option. You can also tell them that their favourite celebrity or that their best friend eats the food they don’t like. This can convince them that the food they don’t want to try is worth trying after all.

If you continue to be concerned by your child’s fussy eating or lack of appetite, talk to them about it. There could be a reason why they don’t like certain foods, or they might be afraid of new tastes and flavours. In addition to this, you should make an appointment with your doctor for further help and advice.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

They'll Flip for FlipaZoo

What could be better than one adorable plush animal? How about two! FlipaZoo delivers two times the Fun for Everyone! FlipaZoo’s start as one animal, like a unicorn for example, and with their patented one-of-a-kind “easy flip” designs can be “flipped” by its soft back to instantly reveal a totally new FlipaZoo design, like a dragon! 

My son and daughter have decided to share their FlipaZoo making it a pink cat for her and a mouse for him. Their imagination is brought to life while playing with their FlipaZoo and it makes a great nap time snuggling companion too! 

FlipaZoo's are large, soft and 100% huggable and lovable. Kids will literally flip for FlipaZoo! Our FlipaZoo isn’t just for nap and playtime, but he travels with us too. We just got back from a July 4th trip and the first one to make it into the car was Flip (that’s our unique name for our FlipaZoo).

These cuddly companions make a great gift for kids and are available in 12 fun designs to please everyone. Warning though, once you get one you just might have to collect the rest. They really are almost too cute to resist.

FlipaZoo can be found exclusively in Walmart this month and retail for the MSRP of $19.99. You can also find FlipaZoo online at

Keep up with the latest from the FlipaZoo family by following @Flipazoo and FlipaZoo on Facebook.