5 Ways to Prepare for a New Furry Companion

More than 6.5 million animals enter U.S. shelters every year and nearly half of them get adopted….

(Family Features) Bringing home a new furry friend can spark joy while adding new routines for the whole family. When adding a pet to a household, it’s important to take into consideration the type of companion, a pet’s life stage, size and how to select a veterinarian.

Seeking out materials to help you become a better pet parent can make the transition a bit smoother. For example, WALTHAM Brand’s Pocket Book of Responsible Pet Ownership outlines how new pet parents can care for a pet’s medical, dental, nutritional, social and behavioral needs.

When preparing for a furry companion, keep these tips in mind, and find more information at pedigree.com and sheba.com.

           

  • Research the pet well in advance of picking him or her up so you understand the breed’s energy levels, temperament, trainability and other traits that fit your lifestyle. After all, adding a pet should be mutually beneficial and the right fit for the family.

  • Consider adoption. More than 6.5 million animals enter U.S. shelters every year and nearly half of them get adopted. Shelters can be a source for neutered, vaccinated and trained pets in need of a home.

“We know there are countless animals in shelters, and we are committed to spreading awareness for shelter dogs in need of forever homes,” said Bo Segers, associate general counsel for Mars Petcare Americas and president of PEDIGREE Foundation Board of Directors. “Adoption is a great option to consider and can change not only an animal’s life, but your own.”

 

Before a shelter visit, take a look at an adoption questionnaire to get a sense of how to best prepare and create a smooth transition for a new pet.

  • Review available medical records to ensure your prospective pet is healthy and up to date on vaccinations. Request a health report from the shelter at the time of adoption to learn about any health or behavioral issues you should be aware of.

  • Consider your home environment. Think about your lifestyle routines and how they align with a pet’s well-being – specifically take into account both physical surroundings and social interactions. When bringing a pet home, gradually introduce him or her slowly to different areas then expand the accessible spaces. If possible, bringing the pet’s former bedding and toys can help him or her more quickly adapt to the new surroundings.
Photos courtesy of Fotolia
  • Establish regular mealtimes. Setting feeding times for furry friends can help create new routines for the whole family. Consider feeding your pet in the same location and similar times each day to minimize stress or conflict that may arise around feeding. One wet cat food to consider is SHEBA PERFECT PORTIONS, an option to help introduce your feline to meaty and seafood flavors. Because they’re appropriately sized for each meal, even the youngest family members can learn about pet responsibilities.

Photos courtesy of Fotolia

SOURCE:
Pedigree
Sheba

Simple Summer Dessert

Watch video to see how to make recipe!

(Family Features) Enjoy your summer with fresh fruit like strawberries in this Easy Strawberry Shortcake recipe.

(Family Features) Enjoy your summer with fresh fruit like strawberries in this Easy Strawberry Shortcake recipe.

Find more dessert recipes at Culinary.net.

Watch video to see how to make recipe!

Easy Strawberry Shortcake

Recipe courtesy of Pillsbury

  • 1          can (5-8) Pillsbury flaky buttermilk biscuits
  • 2          tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1/4       cup sugar

Strawberry mixture:

  • 3          cups fresh strawberries, sliced
  • 1/3       cup sugar

Whipped cream:

  • 1/2       cup whipping cream
  • 2          tablespoons sugar
  • 1/4       teaspoon vanilla
  1. Heat oven to 375° F.
  2. Separate biscuits. Dip tops and sides of biscuits in melted butter. Dip biscuits, covering tops and sides, in sugar. Place sugar-side up on ungreased baking sheet. Bake 13-17 minutes, or until golden brown.
  3. To make strawberry mixture: In medium bowl, mix strawberries and sugar. Set aside.
  4. To make whipped cream: In small bowl, beat whipping cream and sugar until soft peaks form. Add vanilla and beat into mixture.
  5. On plate, split biscuits and put dollop of whipped cream mixture on bottom half of biscuit. Add strawberry mixture. Replace biscuit top and dollop with whipping cream.

SOURCE:
Culinary.net

Invite the Outdoors In

In the United States, 63% of survey participants said they average one hour or less a week in nature…..

(Family Features) Despite the comfort and convenience it affords, modern society is contributing to a vanishing relationship with the natural environment. However, there are plenty of ways to bring nature indoors to reap the benefits of an earthy connection inside your home.

According to a survey commissioned by the Velux Group, a gap is growing between the time Americans spend outdoors and the time they’d like to spend in nature.

In the United States, 63% of survey participants said they average one hour or less a week in nature, but 88% agreed they would like to spend more time. In addition, the majority of respondents said they believe nature, daylight and fresh air have a positive impact on stress levels, and most also agreed those factors have a positive impact on mental well-being.

“Exposure to nature such as trees, plants and views of open spaces has been found to improve the cognitive ability to focus and read social cues,” said Arie Greenleaf, associate professor of counseling at Seattle University. “Even ADHD symptoms in children are mitigated by views of and interactions with nature in a host of different ways. Worker productivity, how people feel about the work they do and the level of engagement, improves with a view of nature.”

Despite ample research demonstrating the benefits, the study revealed a common theme, with 85% of participants believing they spent more time in nature as children than children do today. That’s a trend that translates into adult habits, too.

“With work and family responsibilities, we can’t always fit spending time outside into our busy schedules, effectively making us the indoor generation,” said Peter Foldbjerg, head of Daylight, Energy and Indoor Climate for The Velux Group. “One thing we can do is improve how our homes connect to nature: From houseplants and nature-inspired art to skylights and screened porches, there are a wide variety of options for creating nature connections in the place we spend most of our time – our homes.”

Learn how to bring more nature into your home with these decorating and design ideas:

Houseplants
Living plants not only add a touch of the outdoors, but they also help clean the air inside your home. In smaller spaces, even a few pots of herbs can add a refreshing touch of nature. If flat surfaces and floor space are at a premium, get creative with your wall space and incorporate shelving and wall-mounted planters.

Sunshine and fresh air
Whether it’s from windows or skylights, bringing natural light and fresh air inside can keep your space fresh and inviting. There are scientifically proven correlations between natural light exposure and mood, as well as your body’s ability to maintain its circadian rhythm. Refreshing the air in your home can help eliminate volatile organic compounds, pet dander and microparticles from cooking and cleaning.
If your home is lacking in natural light, a skylight may be easier to add than a window, and skylights bring in twice as much light as vertical windows; their angle allows more of the sun’s rays to reach farther into the room. Some skylights, including many offered by Velux, also offer venting options that can contribute to cleaner air.

Nature-inspired art
Studies have shown that simply viewing photos or paintings of nature scenes has mental and physical benefits. You can also use decorative mirrors to reflect natural light and make a space feel larger and brighter.

Botanically inspired patterns
Look to pillows, area rugs and wallpaper to incorporate patterns inspired by flowers, foliage or landscapes outside. These decorative elements can boost your spirits and create a welcoming environment indoors by reflecting the outdoor world.

Natural materials
Sisal rugs and baskets, wood planking and stone countertops or side tables can add texture and a touch of the natural world to your interiors. These materials let you incorporate nature into your design aesthetic with natural textures that not only look stylish but feel great, too.

Connect with Nature at Work

If you work outside your home, at least a third of your day may have you stuck inside an office. Make your work environment more appealing with these ideas that let you embrace nature even while you’re on the clock.

  • Incorporate natural life with a desk plant. You may feel more refreshed by that touch of green, and it helps clean the air around you, too.
  • Find the sunlight. Today’s offices actively promote free-range working, so find a sofa near a window and get your best work done there. Or spend a few hours working outside each day. If your office design is behind the times, take a daily walk outside during your lunch break.
  • Surround yourself with natural materials. Transform your desk-scape with a bamboo monitor stand, stone smartphone holder or woven seagrass inbox.
  • Trick the senses with natural soundscapes. Earbuds are a must in today’s open-plan offices. Instead of playing music, escape with nature-inspired tunes like rain, wind in the trees or forest birds.
  • Select art influenced by Mother Nature. Decorate with nature-inspired art, whether it’s photos of landscapes or a sunflower print.

Find more ideas for integrating the outdoors into your home design at whyskylights.com/outside-in.

SOURCE:
Velux

BVHS Weekend Column: Code Status

A code status is a decision you can make today….

 

by Karen Bishop, RN, ADON, The Heights at Birchaven

Maybe you or a family member have been asked by a health care professional, “What is your code status?” Most people respond by saying they have a living will. Let us discuss the difference between a living will and a code status.

A living will is in effect when you can no longer make any decisions on your own. While you are still able to make your own end-of-life decisions, you may want to put in writing some of your wishes. Do you wish to be put on life-support, such as a breathing machine (ventilator)? Do you wish to have fluids given to you such as a tube feeding or IV fluids? Do you wish to have pain medications? Those are the kind of questions you answer when you make out a living will. Again, these wishes do not take effect until you can no longer make a decision for yourself.

A code status is a decision you can make today. When you are admitted to a nursing facility, this question will come up. Your code status will inform the medical professionals of your present wishes. If a medical emergency were to happen to you, what would you like the medical professionals to do? Do you want them to start CPR? Do you want them to shock you with the pads/paddles in an attempt to restart your heart? Do you want a tube put down your throat to assist with your breathing if you stop breathing? Or do you have a condition where you would just like to be kept comfortable? Talk with your physician and family about these options.

A code status comes in three types. Full code, DNR-CCA and DNR-CC. (Some institutions may have more options.)

A full code means that medical personal would do everything possible to save your life in a medical emergency. In the event that you stop breathing and your heart stops, everything possible will be done to sustain your life. CPR will begin, oxygen will be given, a breathing tube inserted may be inserted, and an automated external defibrillator (AED) may be used. These are a few of the life-saving measures that will be used.

A DRN-CCA (comfort care arrest) is another option. In the event of a change in your condition like breathing or cardiac problems, you would seek medical treatment. You would go to the emergency department of the nearest hospital and have testing done. You may receive oxygen but not administered with a breathing tube. You may get an IV. You will not receive shocks delivered from the AED or heart compressions as preformed in CPR. You would receive treatment until your heart stops beating.

A DNR-CC (comfort care) is yet another option. In the event of a severe change in your condition or a terminal illness, life-saving measures would not be initiated. A physician would order medications to keep you as comfortable as possible.

Talk with your physician about these options. Take the time to discuss your wishes with your family. It is better to be prepared!

4 Tips for Peak Pet Fitness

Fresh air and exercise can do wonders for your pet….


(Family Features) Sunny days, aromatic flowers and warm temperatures are a few of summer’s most adored qualities. Getting outside to enjoy the sunshine isn’t something only humans love – pets often do, too.

Whether romping through a local dog park or sniffing around the neighborhood, fresh air and exercise can do wonders for your pet. Pairing exercise with a nutritious diet can keep your pet happy and healthy.

Consider these tips to keep your fur pal in tip-top shape, inside and out, and visit IAMS.com to learn more about how you can ensure your pet is receiving the tailored nutrition he or she needs.

  1. Explore the Neighborhood – Exploring the great outdoors is something dogs can enjoy, so give them the opportunity to take a walk around the neighborhood and take in the surroundings. Your daily walks help keep you and your dog active, so adding in extra steps when you can is beneficial to both of you. In fact, studies show people who exercise with their pets get more physical activity on average than non-pet owners.

  1. Provide a Healthy Diet – An easy way to encourage holistic health is to provide nutrition that’s tailored to your pet’s unique needs. For example, IAMS dog and cat food options allow pet owners to choose diets specifically created for their fur friends, based on their age, size, dietary needs and breed type, for a few of the most popular breeds. Not all pets are built the same, so it’s important to feed them according to their specific needs.

  1. Experience Nature – If you’d like to adventure farther with your pet, try bringing him or her along for a hike for more rigorous physical activity. Along with the exercise, it provides an opportunity to experience new places and meet other pets and pet parents along the trail.

  1. Make Playtime a Priority – A simple game of fetch or cat and mouse is a way for your pet to get the exercise he or she needs. Whether inside or outside, playing with your pet gets the blood pumping and helps him or her stay fit. While active playtime can be physically beneficial for your four-legged companion, the mental stimulation can also help increase his or her sharpness and overall well-being.

Photos courtesy of Fotolia

SOURCE:
Mars Petcare

Pique Your Culinary Curiosity with These Trends

Even if you take your hectic lifestyle in stride, chances are it affects your eating habits to some extent.


(Family Features) Forget the rules and restrictions. Today’s food trends are about enjoyment and simplicity, from decadent flavors your taste buds can’t wait to explore to convenient packaging that makes it incredibly easy to eat no matter where or when you make time to dine.

Photo courtesy of Getty Images

Whether you’re a foodie keeping tabs on the latest culinary trends or an everyday eater with a dose of culinary curiosity, these trends can give you something to chew on.

Unique Herbs and Spices
Most often associated with salad dressings and hummus as a flavor additive, tahini has stepped beyond just savory foods and has found its way into many new dishes, including desserts and cocktails. From ice cream and milkshakes to muffins, cookies and other baked goods, this toasted ground sesame seed spread used in Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cuisine can also be added as an alternative to nearly any dish that calls for peanut butter.

On the Go
For most people, a busy day is just part of the program. Even if you take your hectic lifestyle in stride, chances are it affects your eating habits to some extent. Fortunately, you’re not alone and conveniently packaged foods can make eating on the go tasty and enjoyable. The options are even crossing into areas traditionally reserved for a sit-down meal, such as Aunt Jemima’s Pancake on the Go Cups, which offer a soft and fluffy texture like the typical pancake in Chocolate Chip or Buttermilk & Maple flavors. They’re surprisingly simple to prepare; just add water, stir and microwave for a pancake in a cup that you can enjoy from anywhere. Learn more at auntjemima.com.

Ugly Eats
Save your judgment for someplace else; ugly produce is actually in vogue. A growing number of chefs and brands are promoting recipes made with ugly foods – usually produce that is perfectly useful and edible but likely to be overlooked at the store due to a physical imperfection. Think oddly shaped tomatoes or a smaller melon than you might not normally choose. Often those options are offered at a discount and it’s a savvy way to reduce food waste.

Hot and Spicy
Palettes are growing ever-adventurous, and that means flavors that pack a strong punch are gaining traction. If you’re not sure your taste buds are up to the challenge, try adding some spice to a familiar dish like rice or pasta. For example, you can find a spicy take on Rice a Roni, Pasta Roni and Quaker Instant Grits with Jalapeno Cheddar varieties, which include cheddar cheese and real jalapeno bits that leave lingering heat. Include these as the perfect side for your next taco night or try in place of mashed potatoes for an extra kick. Find more spicy ideas for dinner at ricearoni.com.

Move Over, Meat
Opting for more plant-based foods in place of meat no longer means forgoing those flavors and textures. While not a completely new trend, plant-based and blended burgers and sliders have become more mainstream and found places on menus at restaurants nationwide with more people (even non-vegans) searching for a break from meat or ways to add flavors like mushrooms into meals and snacks.

Salty-Sweet Flavors
Sweet-meets-salty combos are hardly new, but products featuring this blend are showing up in more and more places, including at the breakfast table. Sea salt is a perfect match for the sweetness of chocolate or caramel; it adds a rich depth of flavor that strikes a balance between too sweet or too salty. Start the day off with an option like Quaker’s Cocoa & Sea Salt Instant Oatmeal, which contains 100% whole grains, no high-fructose corn syrup, no artificial preservatives, no artificial sweeteners, no artificial flavors and no added colors. Explore additional ideas to sweeten your breakfast plans at quakeroats.com.

SOURCE:
Aunt Jemima
Rice a Roni
Quaker Oats

5 Tips for Moving with a Pet

Moving with a pet requires careful planning to help ensure a smooth transition for the whole family…..


(Family Features) Whether it’s across the street or across the country, moving can be a stressful and chaotic time for your family. This can be especially true for your four-legged family members, who don’t understand what’s happening. Detailed planning and foresight can help alleviate some of the hassle and make relocating a more positive experience for everyone.

“Moving with a pet requires careful planning to help ensure a smooth transition for the whole family,” said Dave Bradey, vice president of people and organization at Mars Petcare North America. “As someone who recently moved with two dogs, I can’t tell you how valuable it is to have access to pet-friendly public areas throughout the moving process. Mars Petcare is committed to encouraging cities to create more pet-friendly public spaces, like parks and rest stops, which can help make moving with a pet easier and more enjoyable. Our four-legged friends should be welcome wherever we are.”

Consider these tips to help make your move with your pet as smooth as possible, and visit BetterCitiesForPets.com for more information on making pets happy, healthy and welcome everywhere.

  1. Check In with Your Vet – Ahead of a move, schedule an appointment with your veterinarian to ensure your pet is healthy and up-to-date on all vaccines. While you are there, ask for a copy of your pet’s records and get recommendations for a veterinarian’s office closer to your new home. If your pet has an ID microchip, be sure to update your new address and contact information.

  1. Research Your New Neighborhood – Before relocating to your new home, research the pet policies and amenities your new town may have. Cities can require pet registration or special collar tags to help keep your pets safe. Municipalities often list the dog parks or public spaces online where pets are welcome, on or off the leash. If your new town is lacking pet-friendly places, visit BetterCitiesForPets.com to find ways to help your city become more welcoming to furry friends.

  1. Pack a Pet Bag – Amid all the packing supplies, it can be easy to lose track of your pet’s belongings. Instead of digging through boxes to find his food once dinnertime rolls around, pack a travel bag for your pet, so food and bowls are easily accessible. Keep a few of your pet’s favorite items, like toys and blankets, on-hand in the car to help reduce nervousness during travel.

  1. Take a Room-by-Room Tour – Once you arrive at your new home, introduce your pet to his new environment, one room at a time. Giving your pet free rein of a new house right away can be overwhelming and confusing, so plan a slower approach to ensure your pet gradually adjusts. Start in one main room, and once your pet seems comfortable, move onto the next room and repeat the process throughout the whole home. In seemingly no time, your pet will claim his favorite spot in the new space.

Photos courtesy of Fotolia

  1. Give Extra Love and Attention – As exhausted as you may be at the end of moving day, don’t forget to show your pet some extra love. Consider a reward like PEDIGREE DENTASTIX Treats to show your understanding for what your pet has gone through. As a bonus, the oral care treat will help clean your dog’s teeth, giving him a bright smile to make new friends in the neighborhood. Your pet may also need time to adjust to a new environment and may be looking for familiar day-to-day structure. Keeping a normal routine and paying close attention to your pet can help prevent unnecessary stress.

SOURCE:
Mars Petcare

Building a Balanced Diet with a Better Sandwich

The ingredients inside a sandwich, not the bread itself, are the most significant drivers of calories, fat and sodium, according to some recent research…..

(Family Features) Fad diets come and go, and as many Americans find, so do the pounds they lose. Most experts agree that eliminating, or drastically reducing, any of the major foods groups from your diet can be detrimental to your health and prevent you from achieving long-term healthy eating goals.

Each of the food groups plays a distinct role in fueling your body and providing it with the vitamins and nutrients it needs. Attempt a well-rounded approach to eating, such as one that includes more nutritious choices for popular dishes like sandwiches. In general, pay attention to the variety, amount and nutrition of the foods you consume.

Consider these ideas for creating a balanced diet and a nutritious sandwich to help ensure you get enough of each food group:

Start from the Outside
There are two groups of grains: whole grains and refined grains. Whole grains contain the entire grain kernel, while refined grains have been milled for a finer texture and are required to be enriched per government mandate to help the population make up for nutrient shortfalls. Grains should account for about one quarter of each meal, but at least half of them should be whole grains – a fact that may surprise some people.

“Many health professionals mistakenly encourage consumers to skip the bread when trying to improve diets,” said Yanni Papanikolaou from Nutrition Strategies Inc., who completed a study to assess the energy and nutrients contributed from sandwiches in diets of children and adolescents. “Americans need to think twice before cutting bread from their diets. In fact, bread packs more of a nutrient punch than a caloric one.”

The ingredients inside a sandwich, not the bread itself, are the most significant drivers of calories, fat and sodium, according to Papanikolaou’s research. A separate study published in the journal “Nutrients” shows grain foods contribute less than 15 percent of all calories in the total diet, while delivering greater than 20 percent of three shortfall nutrients – dietary fiber, folate and iron – and greater than 10 percent of calcium, magnesium and vitamin A.

Consumers can significantly and positively impact their caloric, fat and sodium intake by making more deliberate decisions about sandwich ingredients, including choosing either whole-grain or enriched-grain bread. Find more information about the role of grains in a healthy diet at GrainFoodsFoundation.org.

Rethink the Ingredients
Making more nutritious choices with sandwiches and positively impacting your consumption of calories, fat and sodium is oftentimes a matter of changing the way you stack ingredients between the bread. Consider this sample sandwich: two slices of whole-grain or enriched bread, 2-3 slices of lunchmeat, two slices of cheese, a few spinach or lettuce leaves and a slice of tomato.

Contrary to popular belief, research shows that sandwich eaters who choose either whole- or enriched-grain bread can consume less calories, fat and sodium compared to the typical sandwich consumed in the American diet. This demonstrates the need to focus on the ingredients between the bread for a better (more healthful) sandwich.

Try a different take on a lunchtime favorite by adding spicy horseradish to this Roast Beef and Arugula Sandwich, or make packing a lunch even simpler with this Ultra-Thin Pastrami Sandwich Lunchbox.

Protein
According to the USDA, most Americans get about the right amount of protein in their diets, but could do better at choosing leaner options and adding more variety to their menus.

Incorporating more variety doesn’t have to mean sacrificing convenience. For example, while prepared meats like deli meats, hot dogs and jerky are sometimes a target of critics, numerous studies and the Dietary Guidelines for Americans affirm they can be part of a healthy, balanced diet. Prepared beef products provide a convenient source of protein, vitamins and minerals. Because most prepared meats are pre-cooked, they offer consumers easy, on-the-go access to the nutrient density in meat.

The prepared meats category is diverse and offers choices to meet nutrition needs, tastes, budgets and personal preferences. Thousands of products are available in the meat case, including low- and reduced-sodium products, low- and reduced-fat products, American Heart Association-certified, organic, Kosher grass-fed options and more. Learn more at meatpoultrynutrition.org.

Roast Beef and Arugula Sandwich

Recipe courtesy of the Grain Foods Foundation
Prep time: 5 minutes
Servings: 2

  • 1 tablespoon low-fat mayonnaise
  • 2 teaspoons horseradish
  • 4 slices whole-wheat bread
  • 4 slices tomato
  • 4 ounces lean roast beef, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup arugula or wild greens
  1. Spread mayonnaise and horseradish evenly over two bread slices.
  2. Layer tomato, roast beef and arugula on top of mayonnaise and horseradish. Top with remaining bread slices.

Ultra-Thin Pastrami Sandwich Lunchbox

Recipe courtesy of the North American Meat Institute
Servings: 1

  • 2 slices thin whole-wheat sandwich bread
  • 2 tablespoons low-fat garden vegetable cream cheese
  • 1 ounce ultra-thin pastrami
  • 1 ounce unsalted pretzels
  • 1 apple
  • 1 squeezable low-fat yogurt
  • 1 water bottle (8 fluid ounces)
  1. Using knife, spread bread slices with cream cheese. Layer pastrami on bottom slice and top with second slice.
  2. Fill lunchbox with sandwich, pretzels, apple, yogurt and water bottle.

Photo courtesy of Getty Images (main image)

 

SOURCE:
North American Meat Institute
Grain Foods Foundation

Chowline: Barbecue safely this Fourth of July weekend

Take note of how old your grill brush is and what condition it’s in…..

I’m ready to use my grill for the first time this summer for a July Fourth  Weekend cookout. Is it OK to use a steel wire grill brush to clean the grease and grime that’s built up since the last time I used it?  

Your question is similar to another that was asked in a “Chow Line” column from July 2018, so it’s best answered by reissuing that column here.

When using a wire grill brush, it’s important to take note of how old your grill brush is and what condition it’s in. If your grill brush is worn down, warped, or has some missing bristles, you might want to consider throwing it out.

This is because you’ll want to be careful that you don’t inadvertently leave behind any wire bristles from the grill-cleaning brush that could end up in the meat or vegetables that you are grilling.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there have been several reported cases of internal injuries following unintentional ingestions of wire grill-cleaning brush bristles by both children and adults. The severities of the injuries have ranged from puncture of the soft tissues of the neck, causing severe pain upon swallowing, to perforation of the gastrointestinal tract, requiring emergency surgery, the CDC said.

In fact, an estimated 1,698 consumers visited emergency rooms between 2002 and 2014 after having ingested wire bristles in grilled foods, according to a 2016 study in the journal Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery.

The study authors said that while wire-bristle grill brush injuries aren’t common, they do tend to increase during the grilling season, which makes sense, of course. The months with the highest number of reported injuries are June, July, and August, they said.

More detailed information on wire grill brush injuries can be found at saferproducts.gov, which allows consumers to list information on what their injuries were and how they occurred. 

Consumer Reports offered these tips to help consumers avoid accidental ingestion of wire bristles when barbecuing:

  • Use a moist cloth or paper towel to clean the grill surface before cooking.
  • If you use a wire-bristle brush, thoroughly inspect the grill’s surface before cooking for the presence of bristles that might have dislodged from the grill brush and could embed in cooked food.
  • Depending on the type of grill you have, you might be able to clean it using a pumice stone or a coil-shaped, bristle-free bush.
  • You might try using crumpled-up aluminum foil to brush loose food particles off a warm, but not hot, grill rack or grate.

Another important grilling safety tip to remember is to always use a food thermometer to ensure that your meat is cooked to the correct internal temperature to destroy any harmful bacteria such as E. coli or salmonella that might be present, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

For meats such as steak and pork, that temperature is 145 degrees Fahrenheit. For ground meats—including beef, pork, veal, and lamb—the correct temperature is 160 degrees, the USDA says. And poultry such as chicken and turkey should be cooked to an internal temperature of 165 degrees.

Chow Line is a service of the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES) and its outreach and research arms, OSU Extension and the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center. Send questions to Chow Line, c/o Tracy Turner, 364 W. Lane Ave., Suite B120, Columbus, OH 43201, or turner.490@osu.edu.

Make Your Movie Night Pop

Light and airy popcorn is a movie watching staple, and one you can feel good about eating. I’m going to try the recipe for Maple Bacon Popcorn…..


(Family Features) Invite your friends and neighbors over, spread out some comfy seating and dim the lights.

Whether it’s a kids’ birthday party, an adult gathering or nearly anything in-between, hosting a movie night in the comfort of your own home – or on a projector in the yard – can be the perfect escape. Of course, tasty snacks only add to the fun.

Light and airy popcorn is a movie watching staple, and one you can feel good about eating. At only 30 calories per cup, whole-grain, freshly popped popcorn is naturally low in fat and calories, non-GMO, gluten-free, contains no artificial additives or preservatives and is sugar-free.

Enjoyed a handful at a time or as part of creative, flavorful snack recipes – like Popcorn Pepperoni Pizza Dippers, Sweet and Salty Popcorn Party Mix, Maple Bacon Popcorn Mix and Truffle Popcorn – popcorn offers plenty of versatility to fit nearly any theme. Find more recipes perfect for serving at your next movie night at popcorn.org.

Sweet and Salty Popcorn Party Mix

Yield: 14 cups

  • 10        cups popped popcorn
  • 2          cups miniature pretzel twists
  • 1          cup pecans
  • 1          cup peanuts
  • 2          cups rice, wheat or corn cereal squares
  • 1/2       cup butter (1 stick)
  • 1/2       cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4       cup corn syrup
  • 1/2       teaspoon baking soda
  1. Heat oven to 300° F.
  2. In large bowl, combine popcorn, pretzels, pecans, peanuts and cereal squares; set aside.
  3. In medium saucepan over medium heat, heat butter, brown sugar and corn syrup. Stir mixture until it begins to boil. Boil 3 minutes without stirring. Remove from heat and stir in baking soda. Note: Mixture will foam.
  4. Pour syrup over popcorn mixture and stir until evenly coated. Pour mixture onto large, rimmed baking sheet or roasting pan. Bake 30 minutes, stirring twice during baking. Stir mixture several times as it cools. Store in airtight container.

Popcorn Pepperoni Pizza Dippers

Yield: 16 squares

  •             Nonstick cooking spray
  • 2          eggs
  • 1/2       cup tomato and basil reduced-fat cooking cream
  • 1          tablespoon grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/8       teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
  • 10        cups popped popcorn
  • 1          cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/3       cup thinly sliced pepperoni, coarsely chopped
  • marinara sauce, for dipping
  1. Heat oven to 350° F. Spray 8-inch square baking pan with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In large bowl, whisk eggs, cooking cream, parmesan cheese and black pepper. Stir in popcorn, mozzarella cheese and pepperoni.
  3. Spread mixture in prepared pan, patting down with spatula or spoon.
  4. Bake about 15 minutes until set and lightly browned. Let sit 5 minutes. Cut into 16 bars. Serve warm with marinara sauce.

Truffle Popcorn

Yield: 10 cups

  • 1 1/2    tablespoons olive oil
  • 1          tablespoon, plus 2 teaspoons, white truffle oil, divided
  • 1/2       cup popcorn kernels
  • 1          tablespoon butter
  • 3          tablespoons shredded parmesan cheese
  • 1/2       teaspoon sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  1. In large, heavy-bottomed pot with lid, combine olive oil and 1 tablespoon truffle oil. Add about three popcorn kernels.
  2. Heat over medium-high heat until one kernel pops. Add remaining popcorn kernels; cover.
  3. Once corn begins to pop, shake pot constantly over heat.
  4. When popping slows, remove pot from heat and transfer popcorn to large serving bowl.
  5. Melt butter and mix in remaining truffle oil. Pour mixture over popcorn; toss.
  6. Sprinkle parmesan cheese, salt and pepper over popcorn; toss to distribute evenly.
  7. Serve immediately or store in airtight container.

Maple Bacon Popcorn Mix

Yield: 2 quarts

  • 6          slices thick-cut bacon
  • 1/4       cup pure maple syrup
  • 8          cups popped popcorn
  • 2/3       cup pecan halves, coarsely chopped
  • 2/3       cup dried cranberries
  • 2          tablespoons butter or margarine
  • 1/4       teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
  • 1/4       teaspoon maple extract
  1. Heat oven to 400° F. Line jellyroll pan with foil. Place wire rack in pan. Arrange bacon in single layer on rack. Bake 15 minutes until ends of bacon start to curl.
  2. Remove and reserve 2 table­spoons bacon drippings. Brush bacon with 2 tablespoons maple syrup; bake 15 minutes until browned. Cool then coarsely chop bacon.
  3. In large bowl, combine popcorn, pecans and cranberries.
  4. Combine butter, black pepper, maple extract, remain­ing maple syrup and reserved bacon drippings. Cook over low heat until butter is melted. Drizzle over popcorn mixture and mix thoroughly.
  5. Spread popcorn mixture in jellyroll or roasting pan.
  6. Bake 5 minutes. Toss in bacon pieces. Serve warm.

SOURCE:
Popcorn Board

On-the-Go Breakfast Options

Acai Bowl with Whole-Wheat Toast provides a flavorful serving of fresh fruits. Watch the video!….


(Family Features) If you’re in need of a quick breakfast, consider starting your day with one of these tasty breakfast ideas. This on-trend Acai Bowl with Whole-Wheat Toast provides a flavorful serving of fresh fruits while Overnight Oats can be made the night before for a grab-and-go solution as you head out the door in the morning.

Find more breakfast recipes at Culinary.net.

Watch video to see how to make these recipes!

Acai Bowl with Whole-Wheat Toast

  • 1          frozen acai smoothie pack (100 milligrams)
  • 1          cup low-fat milk
  • 1          medium frozen banana, sliced
  • 1          cup fresh or frozen mixed berries
  • 2          slices whole-wheat bread
  • fresh blueberries
  • granola
  • coconut flakes
  1. Under warm water, thaw frozen acai smoothie pack about 5 seconds.
  2. In blender, combine acai, milk, banana and mixed berries. Blend until smooth.
  3. Toast bread slices to desired doneness.
  4. Pour acai mixture into bowl and garnish with blueberries, granola and coconut flakes before serving. Serve with toast.

Overnight Oats

  • 1/3       cup old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1/2       cup low-fat milk
  • 1/4       teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2          tablespoons mixed dried fruit
  • 1          tablespoon walnuts, chopped
  • 1          tablespoon honey
  1. In bowl or jar, combine oats, milk and vanilla extract. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
  2. Before serving, stir in dried fruit, walnuts and honey.

Recipes adapted from Milk Means More

SOURCE:
Culinary.net