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    The Cookie Department, Fully Functional and Keto Cookies

    3 Heart-Healthy and Keto-Friendly Ingredients You Should Incorporate Into Your Everyday Meals

    3 Heart-Healthy and Keto-Friendly Ingredients You Should Incorporate Into Your Everyday Meals

    Taking care of your cardiovascular health is one of the most important things you can do for yourself. The American diet is full of refined carbs and nutritionally lacking, calorie-dense foods that aren’t close to being good for you, which could cause you problems later on if they’re too much a part of your daily life.

     

    Transitioning to the keto diet is one fantastic way to keep these dangerous foods away, replacing sugars and carbohydrates with healthy fats and superfoods that will keep you feeling incredibly fit and happy.

     

    While taking medications and supplements that help manage and take care of your heart health is a great step, combining that with an active lifestyle and a diet like keto that includes foods packed with nutrients and vitamins can do so much more good for you.

     

    Here are just three keto and heart-healthy ingredients that you can include in your homemade meals every day that will provide you with a lot of benefits.

    Garlic

    Garlic is a very common ingredient in many foods, but it holds so many benefits that we don’t realize. The common kitchen ingredient has been used as a cure-all for centuries thanks to allicin, a compound that has been shown to hold a multitude of therapeutic effects.

     

    Raw garlic or garlic that has been crushed and allowed to rest for a few minutes releases the allicin, and consumption of it can help reduce blood pressure and cholesterol. Studies have also shown that garlic can inhibit platelet buildup, which may reduce the risk of blood clots and stroke.

    Olive Oil

    The Mediterranean diet is famous for being incredibly heart-healthy, and olive oil is one of its richest components. Olive oil contains a lot of antioxidants and monounsaturated fatty acids that decrease inflammation and risk for chronic diseases,  and have been associated with improving heart health.

     

    Studies have shown that people who had a higher intake of olive oil had a 35% lower risk of developing heart disease and had a 48% lower risk of dying from heart disease. You can easily reap the benefits of olive oil by drizzling it over cooked dishes or adding it to various recipes.

    Leafy Greens

    We all know that vegetables are good for you, but leafy green vegetables like spinach, kale, broccoli, bok choy, and lettuce contain a lot of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, particularly vitamin K which helps protect your arteries and promote proper blood clotting.

     

    Research has also found a connection between eating leafy green vegetables and a lower risk of heart disease, with studies showing that increasing intake of leafy green vegetables was associated with up to a 16% lower incidence of heart disease.

    Final Note

    Diet is so closely linked with cardiovascular health, and specific foods we include in it can do so much more for us than we might consider right now. The keto diet is perfect for those of us looking to improve our health through food and live a longer life, and the inclusion of heart-healthy and super keto-friendly ingredients and meals can help reduce your risk for heart disease by a lot more than you think.

    Keto for Seniors? Yes!

    Keto for Seniors? Yes!

    Keto for Seniors? Yes!



    In 2020, Culinary News shared that keto was the most globally searched diet on Google. With over 80 years of positive evidence touting its benefits, keto’s popularity was recently revived thanks to social media. However, while most keto proponents are younger or fitter individuals, seniors are just as suited to this diet.


    In fact, since keto targets many age-related conditions, seniors may find that this is the diet for them.


    Keto Benefits for Older Adults



    1. Can help manage diabetes

    As of 2021, over 14 million seniors in the U.S. have diabetes, so they need to watch their diet to avoid blood sugar fluctuations. Given this, many diabetics turn to the keto diet. As previously discussed here by Akiva Reskinoff, scientific evidence shows that diabetics on keto can lower their blood sugar levels within just a few days of following the diet. On top of this, studies indicate that staying on keto for an extended period of time can result in diabetics needing less medication.


    1. Improves energy levels

    Fatigue is often incorrectly attributed as a normal part of aging. However, as the National Institute on Aging states regarding seniors, fatigue is often a by-product of disease or lifestyle. With a keto diet, though, seniors can benefit from an increase in ketones and more consistent blood sugar levels, which can drastically stabilize daily energy levels.


    1. Aids in maintaining the optimal weight

    The importance of maintaining a healthy weight is paramount, especially as we age. In fact, while 40% of overweight seniors in the U.S. are more susceptible to chronic illness, the AARP explains that becoming underweight increases the risk of frailty and muscle loss. With a keto diet, though, the body enters a metabolic state of “ketosis”, which aids in burning the right fats to manage weight. Plus, since the keto diet eliminates “empty” calories from excess carbs, food consumed is filling and nutritious. This makes it easier for seniors to satisfy their daily caloric needs.


    Easy Tips for Seniors Transitioning to Keto



    While research has shown that keto is mainly safe and beneficial for seniors, it's still necessary to consider an older adult’s more sensitive constitution. So, here are some tips to make the transition easier and more sustainable.


    1. Consult a healthcare professional

    Because keto involves “recalibrating” your body’s fat-burning and energy-producing systems, it may initially cause the “keto flu”. Although temporary, this period may be uncomfortable for older adults with chronic conditions. Hence, before embarking on keto, it’s best to get a doctor’s approval. Furthermore, since keto does restrict certain foods while encouraging larger quantities of others, seniors with specific restrictions may need professional help. In these cases, KelseyCare Advantage highlights that seniors can obtain information from licensed nutritionists as this professional guidance is included in their Medicare plans. These healthcare professionals can help tailor a keto diet for seniors. And since they're specially trained in geriatric care, they can create a keto approach with senior needs in mind.


    1. Find keto alternatives of your favorite snacks

    For some, the most difficult part of adopting a new diet is letting go of certain foods. For keto, this could mean most baked goods, pasta, rice, and other sweet treats. However, completely cutting out these foods isn’t particularly sustainable at the very beginning. Over time, this can result in giving up the diet completely. To avoid this, make the diet more sustainable with the help of keto alternatives. For instance, at the Cookie Department, we’ve developed several keto cookies that satisfy cravings without breaking ketosis. If you’re worried about feeling deprived on keto, try to stock your pantry with a few of these delicious and satisfying options.


    1. Take it slowly with consistency

    As with anything, transitioning to keto takes some time. Your body and mind will be used to your old diet, after all. Thus, rather than going cold turkey, seniors may find a slow and steady transition more manageable. If need be, try going keto a few days a week first. By taking a steady pace, seniors have a higher chance of adapting to keto smoothly with less risk of contraindications. Moreover, it makes it easier to get into the habit of eating keto-based foods.


    Switching to a new diet may seem daunting at first. But with the right research and proper preparation, seniors can smoothly adapt to a ketogenic diet with benefits that can improve their holistic health.

    Drinking Your Morning Coffee Isn’t The Only Way To Get Your Caffeine Boost To Start The Day.

    Drinking Your Morning Coffee Isn’t The Only Way To Get Your Caffeine Boost To Start The Day.

    Is It Healthy to Eat Your Coffee?

    What’s not to love about coffee? It not only tastes great, it's also is an essential  start to the day for millions and millions of people. In fact, 54% of coffee drinkers say that it is only after having their morning cup of coffee do they feel like themselves. We will address the sleep deficiency that  so many people are operating at every day in another post!

    The good news is that in addition to waking us up, coffee offers additional health benefits. Rich in antioxidants coffee can help reduce your risk of developing several serious diseases. It has been shown to help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, skin cancer, liver disease, and Type-2 diabetes. Drinking a cup or two of coffee can even help reduce the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease.

    While drinking coffee is the traditional way people ingest it, new studies are showing that eating it might be even more beneficial. Here are three key ways that eating your coffee has shown to be a healthier alternative.

    You Get More Antioxidants by Eating Coffee

    Sadly for most Americans, the bulk of their antioxidant intake comes through their daily cups of coffee. (We will address this in another post as well!) But as antioxidant-rich as brewed coffee is, far more antioxidants never make it into the cup. The reason is because the majority of coffee’s antioxidants remain in the grounds after brewing.

    By skipping the brewing process and eating the coffee, you will enjoy the full amount of antioxidants found within the beans. This is important because antioxidants are essential for keeping harmful free radicals out of your bloodstream! 

    Coffee Beans are Low Calorie

    If you are watching your weight or trying to lose a few pounds (who isn't?), then eating your coffee is a great way to enjoy a snack that is also very low calorie. Eating just one ounce of espresso coffee beans adds just three calories to your daily diet! 

    Caffeine is Absorbed More Quickly When Eaten

    Need to wake up quickly? Then you’ll want to skip your cup of coffee and just eat it. The beneficial active ingredients in coffee are absorbed through the mucous membranes in the mouth, so when you eat your coffee the ingredients get absorbed much quickly. Eating coffee will make your brain more alert, eliminate your mental fog, and fill your body with the powerful antioxidants you need faster than drinking it.

    Coffee in a Soft and Chewy Cookie, What Can Be Better?

    The Cookie Department uses fair-trade coffee in our delicious, soft-baked double chocolate cookie, Awaken Baked. Every cookie comes packed with 40mg of antioxidant-rich coffee, thus giving you the boost of caffeine and antioxidants you need whenever and wherever you need it.

    Give our decadent, chocolatey Awaken Baked cookies a try today, and start getting the most out of your coffee – by eating it.