Eat Right: Heart-healthy Family Dinners

February is American Heart Month, and New Jammies joins the American Heart Association in reminding families this is an ideal time to focus on their hearts and encourage them to get their loved ones, friends and communities involved.

“The biggest part of living healthy comes down to simply making healthy choices,” says the AHA. “While you can’t change things like age and family history, the good news is that even modest changes to your diet and lifestyle can improve your heart health and lower your risk by as much as 80 percent.”

In its Heart-healthy Recipes section of the American Heart Association’s Go Red for Women website, the AHA provides meal planning ideas that can save your heart by improving your diet.

“There’s a common misconception that anything described as healthy is lacking in flavor and satisfaction. To add insult to injury, there’s also an automatic assumption that healthy foods are unaffordable,” the American Heart Association says.

“The truth is, there are plenty of creative ways to make a tasty, heart-healthy dish. And you don’t have to be a master chef to whip one up, and do it well … Once you start eating this way, you may wonder why you didn’t start sooner. And before you know it, you’ll be coming up with your own inspired creations.”

Try these heart-healthy dishes from the American Heart Association and encourage your New Jammies kids and to eat right today:

Healthy greens and beans add a flavorful punch to this easy soup recipe for Tuscan Bean Soup.

Ingredients

6 Servings (Serving size 1 cup)
1 tsp. olive oil (extra virgin preferred)
1/2 small red onion (chopped)
1 medium celery (chopped)
1 medium garlic clove (minced)
2 cups fat-free, low-sodium chicken broth
15.5 oz. canned, no-salt-added Great Northern beans (rinsed, drained)
14.5 oz. canned, no-salt-added, diced tomatoes (undrained)
1 tsp. dried oregano (crumbled)
1/2 tsp. dried thyme (crumbled)
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
2 cups spinach
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Directions

1. In a large saucepan or Dutch oven, heat the oil over medium heat, swirling to coat the bottom. Cook the onion, celery, and garlic for 4 to 5 minutes, or until the onion and celery are soft.

2. Stir in the broth, beans, tomatoes with liquid, oregano, thyme, and red pepper flakes. Increase the heat to medium high and bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, for 20 minutes so the flavors blend.

3. Stir in the spinach. Simmer, covered, for 2 to 3 minutes, or until the spinach is wilted.

4. Just before serving, sprinkle the soup with the Parmesan.

This protein-packed vegetarian Edamame Salad with Orange-Balsamic Dressing can be a main course or a side dish.

Ingredients

Serving size 1 1/2 cups

1 1/2 cups shelled edamame (green soybeans)
1/4 cup fresh orange juice
2 Tbsp. Dijon mustard, lowest sodium available
2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar PLUS
1 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar, divided use
1 tsp. olive oil, extra virgin preferred
1/4 tsp. pepper
15.5 oz. canned, no-salt-added navy beans, rinsed, drained
1/4 tsp. salt
2 oz. mixed salad greens, torn into bite-size pieces (about 2 cups)
1/4 medium cucumber, sliced crosswise
1 medium Italian plum (Roma) tomato, diced
1/4 cup shredded carrot
1/4 cup sliced radishes

Directions

1. Prepare the edamame using the package directions, omitting the salt. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk together the orange juice, mustard, 2 tablespoons vinegar, oil, and pepper. Set aside.

2. In a medium bowl, stir together the edamame, navy beans, salt, and remaining 1 tablespoon vinegar. Let stand for 10 minutes at room temperature or cover and refrigerate until needed, up to five days.

3. At serving time, put the salad greens on plates. Top, in order, with the cucumber, tomato, carrot, radishes, and bean mixture. Pour the dressing over all.

Benefit from heart-healthy omega-3 fats with this vegetable and seafood Spinach-Stuffed Baked Salmon dish.

Ingredients
4 Servings (Serving size 3 ounces fish and 1/2 cup vegetables)

1 tsp. olive oil (extra virgin preferred)
2 oz. spinach
1 tsp. grated lemon zest
1/4 cup chopped, roasted red bell peppers, rinsed and drained if bottled
1/4 cup fresh basil (coarsely chopped)
2 Tbsp. chopped walnuts
Cooking spray
4 salmon fillets (about 4 ounces each), rinsed, patted dry
2 Tbsp. Dijon mustard (lowest sodium available)
2 Tbsp. plain dry bread crumbs, lowest sodium available
1/2 tsp. dried oregano (crumbled)
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/8 tsp. pepper

Directions

1. In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium heat, swirling to coat the bottom. Cook the spinach and lemon zest for 2 minutes, or until the spinach is wilted, stirring constantly. Transfer to a medium bowl. Stir in the roasted peppers, basil, and walnuts. Let cool for 5 minutes.

2. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Lightly spray the foil with cooking spray.

3. Cut a lengthwise slit in the side of each fillet to make a pocket for the stuffing. Be careful to not cut through to the other side. With a spoon or your fingers, carefully stuff a scant 1/2 cup spinach mixture into each fillet. Transfer to the baking sheet. With a pastry brush or spoon, spread the mustard over the fish.

4. In a small bowl, stir together the remaining ingredients. Sprinkle over the fish. Lightly spray the top with cooking spray.

5. Bake for 12 to 13 minutes, or until the fish is the desired doneness and the filling is heated through.

This Blackberry Cobbler dessert recipe features nutrient-dense blackberries and is great for family meals, especially as the weather warms. Nutrient-dense foods are high in nutrients but relatively low in calories, and contain vitamins, minerals, complex carbohydrates, lean protein, and healthy fats.

Cooking Tip: On the blackberries, this sweet-tart fruit is nutrient dense. Look for plump berries with a dark, rich color.

Ingredients
8 Servings

Cooking spray
4 cups blackberries
1/4 cup sugar substitute and 1/2 cup sugar substitute, divided use
1/4 cup water
Juice from 1 medium lime
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/16 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups fat-free milk
1/4 cup canola or corn oil
1/4 cup fat-free, plain Greek yogurt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly spray a 13 x 9 x 2-inch baking pan with cooking spray.

2. In a medium bowl, gently stir together the berries, 1/4 cup sugar substitute, the water, lime juice, and ginger. Let the berry mixture stand for at least 15 minutes so the juices can accumulate.

3. In a small bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, salt, and the remaining 1/2 cup sugar substitute.

4. In a large bowl, whisk together the milk, oil, yogurt, and vanilla.

5. Add the flour mixture to the milk mixture, stirring just until no flour is visible. Don’t overmix.

6. Pour the batter into the baking pan. Using a spatula, spread the batter in the pan. (The batter doesn’t have to touch the edge of the pan; it will spread while baking.) Top with the berry mixture.

7. Bake for 50 minutes, or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

For information on women and heart disease, visit Go Red for Women.

 

New Jammies was born as an environmentally responsible company offering 100% certified organic cotton and flame retardant-free children’s pajamas. Learn more at newjammies.com.

Eat Right: Sweet, Healthy Desserts Families Will Love

Audrey Hepburn once said, “Let’s face it, a nice creamy chocolate cake does a lot for a lot of people; it does for me.” At New Jammies, we love dessert, especially cake, as much as the next sweet tooth. Since February is American Heart Month, and the perfect time for spreading the love, we decided to seek out tasty and healthy dessert recipes — including one for chocolate lovers — to keep hearts happy, just in time for Valentine’s Day.

Spiced PearsHoney and Spice Pears
Courtesy American Heart Association
Makes 4 Servings

Enjoy a delicate, heart-healthy dessert by cooking seasonal pears in a light homemade syrup. For info on women and heart disease, visit Go Red for Women.

Ingredients
1 cup light cranberry juice cocktail
1/2-3/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/8-1/4 tsp. ground allspice
4 small firm pears (about 6 ounces each), peeled, halved, and cored
2 Tbsp. sweetened, dried cherries or cranberries
1 Tbsp. honey
1 1/2 tsp. honey (divided use)

Tip: Serving size 2 pear halves and 1 heaping tablespoon sauce.

Directions
1. In a large nonstick skillet, stir together the cranberry juice, cinnamon, and allspice. Add the pears and cherries. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Cook, covered, for 5 minutes, or until the pears are just tender-crisp.

2. Transfer pears with the cut side down to a serving plate, leaving liquid in the skillet.

3. Cook the liquid, still on medium high, for 2 1/2 to 3 minutes, or until reduced to a scant 1/4 cup, stirring frequently. Remove from heat. Stir in honey. Spoon over pears.

4. Let cool completely, about 20 minutes. Turn the pears several times to coat with the sauce or transfer them to plates and spoon the sauce on top.

img_2304Frozen Yogurt Fruit Pops
Courtesy American Diabetes Association
Makes 4 Servings

You can make this recipe with any fruit and flavor of yogurt. Try mango chunks with pineapple yogurt, or kiwi halves with strawberry yogurt. You could also try other toppings like coconut or sprinkles instead of pecans.

Ingredients
Wax paper
12 strawberries, hulled
12 cake pop sticks
½ cup nonfat blueberry Greek yogurt
¼ cup chopped pecans

Directions
1. Line a small baking sheet with wax paper. Set aside.

2. Insert the cake pop sticks into the top part of the strawberry. Do not pierce through the end of the strawberry.

3. Dip each strawberry in the yogurt, shaking so that each strawberry is thinly coated. Use a spoon to help coat the strawberries if needed.

4. Sprinkle 1 teaspoon of pecans (or coconut, sprinkles, etc) over each coated strawberry.

5. Place the strawberry pops on the baking sheet and freeze for 1-2 hours or until the yogurt is frozen. Once pops are frozen, remove from wax paper and serve or put in a freezer zip-top bag.

img_2306Cranfully Good Chocolate Bites
Courtesy US Cranberries
Makes 8 “Bites”

Rich dark chocolate topped with your favorites: cranberries, nuts, and dried fruits.

Ingredients
3 T 70-80% cocoa premium dark chocolate chips
1/8 cups mix of walnuts, cashews, almonds, pistachios
1/8 cups mix of dried cranberries, raisins, gooseberries (optional), pumpkin seeds

Directions
1. Mix the nuts and dried fruits together.

2. Melt chocolate in microwave-safe container on low power setting. Rule of thumb: 1 min. for 1 oz.; 3 min. for 8 oz.; 3.5 min. for 1 lb.; 4 min. for 2.lb. Run microwave in 30 sec.-1 min. increments.

3. When most of the chocolate is melted, stir mixture continuously until smooth, shiny, and completely melted.

4. Spoon chocolate onto wax paper in even circles. Top with nuts and fruits. Let harden and then refrigerate 10 minutes.

Pineapple Cream Cheese Pie with Berriesimg_2305
Courtesy Mayo Clinic Staff
Makes 8 Servings

Dietitian’s tip: This dessert is more similar to a tart than a traditional cream pie. You can use any fresh, unsweetened berries, such as strawberries, blueberries, raspberries or blackberries.

Ingredients
8 ounces fat-free cream cheese, softened
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 prepared graham cracker crust, about 9 inches in diameter
1 can (16 ounces) unsweetened crushed pineapple, drained
1 pint berries, rinsed and drained (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries or blackberries, or a combination)

Directions
1. In a small bowl, mix the softened cream cheese with the sugar. Gently spread over the graham cracker crust.

2. Refrigerate until well chilled, about 2 hours.

3. Just before serving, spread the crushed pineapple over the cream cheese. Add the berries.

4. Cut the pie into 8 wedges and serve immediately.

 

New Jammies was born as an environmentally responsible company offering 100% certified organic cotton and flame retardant-free children’s pajamas. Learn more at newjammies.com.

Eat Right: Celebrate American Heart Month with Heart-Healthy Recipes

New JammiesThe Centers for Disease Control and Prevention designates February as American Heart Month. And all month long New Jammies has been focusing on a lifestyle committed to heart health.

One way the CDC suggests focusing on heart health is making small changes that can lead to a lifetime of healthy choices. According to the CDC, heart disease is the leading cause of death for men and women. High blood pressure is a leading cause of heart disease and stroke.

The CDC encourages these simple changes to make a big difference. Try these ideas for getting started:
• Talk to your doctor about ways to control high blood pressure.
• Add physical activity to your daily routine.
• Quit smoking.
• Make heathy eating swaps, such as using fresh or dried herbs and spices instead of salt.
• Serve food lower in salt and fat content, provide more fruits and vegetables, and make less sugary sweets.

New Jammies is a big supporter of healthy eating practices for parents and their kids, and we love any recipe that makes family meal planning easier. These recipes from the CDC and the American Heart Association are heart-healthy and delicious. Give them a try this month and all year long!

Oatmeal WafflesOatmeal Pecan Waffles (or Pancakes)
Source: National Institutes of Health, “Deliciously Healthy Family Meals”
Serving Size: 3 small (2-inch) or 1 large (6-inch) waffle (depending on waffle iron size) or pancakes

Ingredients
For waffles
1 C whole-wheat flour
½ C quick-cooking oats
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp sugar
¼ C unsalted pecans, chopped
2 large eggs, separated (for pancakes, see note)
1½ C fat-free (skim) milk
1 Tbsp vegetable oil

For fruit topping
2 C fresh strawberries, rinsed, stems removed, and cut in half (or substitute frozen strawberries, thawed)
1 C fresh blackberries, rinsed (or substitute frozen blackberries, thawed)
1 C fresh blueberries, rinsed (or substitute frozen blueberries, thawed)
1 tsp powdered sugar

Directions
1. Preheat waffle iron.
2. Combine flour, oats, baking powder, sugar, and pecans in a large bowl.
3. Combine egg yolks, milk, and vegetable oil in a separate bowl, and mix well.
4. Add liquid mixture to the dry ingredients, and stir together. Do not overmix; mixture should be a bit lumpy.
5. Whip egg whites to medium peaks. Gently fold egg whites into batter (for pancakes, see note below).
6. Pour batter into preheated waffle iron, and cook until the waffle iron light signals it’s done or steam stops coming out of the iron. (A waffle is perfect when it is crisp and well-browned on the outside with a moist, light, airy and fluffy inside.) (Or make pancakes.)
7. Add fresh fruit and a light dusting of powdered sugar to each waffle, and serve.
Tip: For pancakes, do not separate eggs. Mix whole eggs with milk and oil, and eliminate steps 4 and 5.

Lettuce Wraps
Asian-Style Chicken Wraps
Source: National Institutes of Health, “Deliciously Healthy Dinners and Deliciously Healthy” Family Meals
Serving Size: 2 wraps, ¼ C sauce

Ingredients
For sauce
1 small Jalapeno chili pepper, rinsed and split lengthwise—remove seeds and white membrane, and mince (about 1 Tbsp); for less spice, use green bell pepper
1 Tbsp garlic, minced (about 2–3 cloves)
3 Tbsp brown sugar or honey
½ C water
½ Tbsp fish sauce
2 Tbsp lime juice (or about 2 limes)

For chicken
1 Tbsp peanut oil or vegetable oil
1 Tbsp ginger, minced
1 Tbsp garlic, minced (about 2–3 cloves)
12 oz boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into thin strips
1 Tbsp lite soy sauce
1 Tbsp sesame oil (optional)
1 Tbsp sesame seeds (optional)

For wrap
1 (small) head red leaf lettuce, rinsed, dried, and separated into single leaves large enough to create wrap
8 fresh basil leaves, whole, rinsed and dried
2 cups bok choy or Asian cabbage, rinsed and shredded

Directions
1. To prepare the sauce, add all ingredients to a saucepan, and bring to a boil over high heat. Remove from heat, and let sit in hot saucepan for 3–5 minutes. Chill in refrigerator for about 15 minutes or until cold.
2. Prepare the chicken by heating oil in a large wok or sauté pan. Add ginger and garlic, and stir fry briefly until cooked but not brown, about 30 seconds to 1 minute.
3. Add chicken, and continue to stir fry for 5–8 minutes.
4. Add soy sauce, sesame oil (optional), and sesame seeds (optional), and return to a boil. Remove from the heat, and cover with lid to hold warm in hot sauté pan.
5. Assemble each wrap: Place one large red lettuce leaf on a plate, then add ½ cup chicken stir-fry, 1 basil leaf, and ¼ cup shredded cabbage and fold together. Serve two wraps with ¼ cup sauce.

Green Chile Stew

Green Chile Stew
Source: American Heart Association
Serving Size: 4

Ingredients
1 Tbsp. corn or canola oil
1 lb. beef sirloin, beef round or flank steak (whatever is on sale), cut into 1/2-inch cubes, all visible fat discarded
1 small onion (yellow or white), chopped
2 clove minced, fresh garlic OR
2 tsp. jarred, minced garlic
2 Tbsp. whole-wheat flour
2 cups fresh tomatoes, chopped OR
14.5 oz. canned, no-salt-added, chopped tomatoes
6 Hatch chilies, roasted, skinned OR
2-3 oz. no-salt-added, canned green chilies
1 jalapeño or Serrano pepper (skip this if you don’t like spicy food), chopped, (optional)
1/2 tsp. black pepper
2 cup low-sodium, fat-free chicken broth

Directions
1. In a stew pot, heat oil over medium-high heat and add beef. Stir occasionally, until browned ? about 5 minutes.
2. Stir in onion and garlic, cooking 2-3 minutes until onions begin to be translucent.
3. Add flour, stirring until well mixed.
4. Add all remaining ingredients and stir well.
5. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer for 1 hour.

Banana Split Yogurt ParfaitBanana Split Berry Yogurt Parfaits
Source: American Heart Association
Serving Size: 4

Ingredients
2 6 – oz. packaged, fat-free pineapple yogurt
1 cup sliced strawberries OR
1 cup mixed berries
1 large banana (about 1 cup sliced)
1/4 cup low-fat granola (4 Tbsp)
1 Tbsp. cocoa, unsweetened
1 Tbsp. confectioner’s sugar
2 tsp. hot water

Directions
1. To assemble parfaits, in small dish, layer about 1/3 cup yogurt, 1/4 cup sliced strawberries, 1/4 cup sliced bananas and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon granola.
2. In small cup, stir together cocoa, confectioners’ sugar and hot water until smooth. Drizzle 1 teaspoon over each parfait.

Tips
Instead of fresh berries you can substitute 1 cup frozen mixed berries, thawed.
Substitute any flavor of nonfat yogurt you enjoy.

Sleep Tight: Outfitting Baby for Long Winter’s Nights

New Jammies Sleep SacksIn 2012, Time Magazine ran a story about safe-sleeping sacks that were becoming popular in U.S. hospitals, inspired by the passing of Bill Schmid’s daughter, Haley, of SIDS. At the time, Schmid had developed a sleeveless zip-up sleep bag to replace blankets, and the popularity of this safe-sleeping option was gaining momentum. The article noted that his sleep sack invention had become so mainstream, the baby apparel was being sold everywhere from Target to Pottery Barn. And now, New Jammies.

New Jammies heard the call for safe-sleeping baby wear in its own collections. And answered. Last spring, we launched our popular sleeveless sleep sacks to keep babies safe and warm in the wintertime and cool in the warmer months.

The idea to offer sleep sacks came about as New Jammies owner and founder Nicole Ludlow, mother of a new baby herself, become interested in the safety of sleeveless zip-up bags for resting babies.

“I wanted to carry a collection of durable sleep sacks that encouraged my baby to sleep on his back until he could comfortably roll over from back or tummy,” she says. “And eliminate loose crib blankets for the prevention of SIDS.”

New Jammies Butterfly Magic Sleep SackLudlow designed a New Jammies sleep sack that’s offered in double-layered, 100% organic cotton to be warm, breathable and cozy. Sizes come in small (3-6 months, 10-18 pounds) and medium (6-18 months, 16-24 pounds).

“They fit perfectly over footie pajamas for cool evenings or can be paired with onesies for warmer nights,” she says.

According to Nancy Maruyama, RN, an infant’s sleep environment plays a large role in safe sleep. In her article titled, “Tips for Safe Sleeping: Newborns and Babies” on pregnancy.org, Maruyama says SIDS deaths are most likely to occur when babies are between the ages of 2 months and 4 months, and deaths tend to peak in winter months.

“It is the leading cause of death in babies 1 month to 1 year old,” she reports.

Strategies featured in the article for lowering SIDS risk includes the notion that the only safe bedding for baby is no bedding.

“Layer clothing on baby for warmth instead of layering blankets,” says the article. “Baby’s face should never be covered and pillows should never be used. This can also cause suffocation.”

Also, stuffed animals, pillows, bumper pads or other fluffy items should not be placed in baby’s sleeping areas.

“There have been numerous reports of suffocation from accidentally covering the baby’s mouth and nose with these items. The baby’s crib should contain nothing but the crib.”

Maruyama also suggests parents not dress baby too warmly at sleep time.

“Allowing babies to become too warmly dressed has been shown to be a risk factor for SIDS. Avoid extra clothing especially when the baby has a fever.”

For the best newborn sleep when putting infants to bed or down for a nap, experts on whattoexpect.com advise keeping babies’ rooms cool. They say being too warm or too cold can interrupt newborn sleep.

“Dress baby in a warm sleeper or sleep sack, but skip the blankets (loose bedding is also a risk factor for SIDS),” says the “How to Dress a Newborn” article. “In the winter, try to keep the room temperature between 68ºF and 72ºF. 68ºF is usually ideal, but all babies are different. If yours wakes during the night or after a nap, check his neck to make sure he’s not too sweaty. A little dampness goes with the baby territory, but pools of perspiration definitely do not.”

Many baby experts suggest a cotton onesie under well-fitting footie pajamas or long-sleeved sleep-and-play outfits as ideal winter sleep wear. Adding a sleeveless sleep sack ensures a safe-sleeping environment, and keep baby warm without blankets.
New Jammies Whales
Show Us the Love

February is American Heart Month, and New Jammies is celebrating heart health and wellness by asking kids and their parents to show their PJ love. Throughout the month, we’re accepting entries for the “Show New Jammies Your PJ Love” contest, open to New Jammies customers and their families who can show kids wearing their favorite New Jammies PJs for infants, toddlers and young children.

Photos can be submitted online by clicking here (or visit newjammies.com and click on “Photo Contest” at the bottom of the page). Deadline for entries is Feb. 29, 2016.

The winner receives 3 pair of PJs or footies of their choice (Value approximately $100.00).

– See more at: http://newjammies.com/blog/show-new-jammies-your-pj-love/

Photo Contest: Show New Jammies Your PJ Love

New Jammies LobstersFebruary is American Heart Month, and New Jammies is celebrating heart health and wellness by asking kids and their parents to show their PJ love.

Throughout the month, New Jammies, a Colorado-based producer of 100% organic cotton pajamas, is accepting entries for its “Show New Jammies Your PJ Love” contest. The contest is open to New Jammies customers and their families who can show kids wearing their favorite New Jammies PJs for infants, toddlers and young children.

Enter by clicking here.

“We love to see the smiles on kids’ faces when they’re wearing their favorite New Jammies,” says New Jammies founder Nicole Ludlow. “Since February is the month of love with Valentine’s Day on Feb. 14, and we’re also observing American Heart Month, we think it’s a great time for families to show us how much they love their New Jammies through their own photos.”

Submitted photos will be featured on the New Jammies Facebook page, and the winning photo, chosen based on Facebook likes, will be highlighted on social media and in the New Jammies March e-newsletter. The winner receives 3 pair of PJs or footies of their choice (Value approximately $100.00). Photos can be submitted online by clicking here (or visit newjammies.com and click on “Photo Contest” at the bottom of the page). Deadline for entries is Feb. 29, 2016.

New Jammies was born as an environmentally responsible company offering 100% certified organic cotton and flame retardant-free children’s pajamas. The company’s goal is to make a difference in the lives it touches by supporting philanthropic organizations whose goals are to improve communities and the lives of children. By making a New Jammies purchase, customers receive not only the highest quality, environmentally friendly product, but they also become part of the New Jammies team, helping to improve the quality of life for children.

For more information and to shop online, visit https://newjammies.com. Enter online here.