Monthly Archives: July 2013

Hydrating Foods

When you’re truly parched, a tall glass of water really can’t be beat. But water’s not the only place where we get our hydration — turns out, high water-volume foods can also provide our body with fluids.

In fact, fruits and vegetables are composed of 90 percent water, said Roberta Anding, a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and director of sports nutrition at Texas Children’s Hospital.

Even though the portions of fruits and vegetables we eat are likely not big enough to minimize the need to actually drink our fluids, they’re still a good source of “time-released” fluid, said Anding, who also works as a sports dietitian for the Houston Texans football team.

When a person drinks a glass of water, it leaves the stomach and gets into the blood stream relatively quickly, she explained. But food takes some time to be digested, so it’s a delayed fluid response.

For example, Anding makes sure that there are 13 to 17 different fruits and vegetables per meal when she plans out food for the Houston Texans. She’ll make smoothies that have greek yogurt and berries — they may not immediately quench thirst, but “it becomes that add-on hydration that helps you perform,” she said.

Anding said that all fruits and vegetables are hydrating, so it’s good to eat them all to get that “time-released” fluid (so there are no excuses if you don’t like a particular fruit or vegetable!).

[Article credit Amanda L Chan via Huffington Post]


Little Blue Dynamo, the Blueberry

July is National Blueberry month!  According to the US Department of Agriculture, blueberries are grown in 35 states in the US and the United States produces 90% of all blueberries grown in the world. Native Americans believed blueberries were not only good to eat, but that these little blue berries were also good for your health.  When brewed into a tea, blueberries had relaxing properties and as a juice, they were helpful for controlling a cough. Modern medicine agrees, promoting blueberries as being rich in antioxidants, thus helping to reduce the risk of heart disease and cancer.

Our Blue Lagoon smoothie can be made without sugar or with Splenda, contributing to the already low calorie properties of the blueberry.  Just 80 calories to a cup of fresh blueberries!

Blueberry Nutrition

With just 80 calories per cup and virtually no fat, blueberries offer many noteworthy nutritional benefits. Here’s the skinny on blueberry nutrition:

Blueberry Infographic: A Handful of Health

Blueberries are packed with vitamin C.

In just one serving, you can get 14 mg of Vitamin C – almost 25 percent of your daily requirement. Vitamin C aids the formation of collagen and helps maintain healthy gums and capillaries. It also promotes iron absorption and a healthy immune system1,2.

Blueberries are dynamos of dietary fiber.

Research has shown that most of us don’t get enough fiber in our diets. Eating foods high in fiber will help keep you regular, your heart healthy and your cholesterol in check. A handful of blueberries can help you meet your daily fiber requirement1,2. What a tasty way to eliminate this worry from your day!

Blueberries are an excellent source of manganese.

Manganese plays an important role in bone development and in converting the proteins, carbohydrates and fats in food into to energy – a perfect job for blueberries3.

Blueberries contain substances that have antioxidant properties

Antioxidants work to neutralize free radicals — unstable molecules linked to the development of cancer, cardiovascular disease and other age-related conditions such as Alzheimer’s. Substances in blueberries called polyphenols, specifically the anthocyanins that give the fruit its blue hue, are the major contributors to antioxidant activity4.

Get the lowdown on blueberry nutrition here, and download more information about the health benefits of blueberries from our dynamic resources.


  1. National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference. Release 23 U.S. Department of Agriculture-ARS 2006.
  2. Medline Plus Medical Dictionary Online. U.S. National Library of Medicine. NIH.
  3. Dietary Reference Intakes for Vitamin A, Vitamin K, Arsenic, Boron, Chromium, Copper, Iodine, Iron, Manganese, Molybdenum, Nickel, Silicon, Vanadium and Zinc. (2001) National Academy of Sciences. Institute of Medicine. Food and Nutrition Board. Chapter 10 Manganese.
  4. Prior, R.L. et al J Agric Food Chem. 1998.

Plant Proteins

Plant Proteins

According to, plant sources of protein provide health benefits such as offering higher fiber and having more vitamins and a wider variety of nutrients than other protein sources.  They are also generally lower in calories and have less fat. Plant proteins are also an alternative for those who choose not to eat meat for health or ethical reasons.  For our customers who have asked for more vegetarian options, we heard you and now have a substitute for any of our chicken-based wraps, salads and flatbreads.

Chicken Free

Our new Chicken-Free Strips from the company Beyond Meat are a blend of soy and pea protein and mirror the taste of real, lightly seasoned, oven-baked chicken. The strips are available to replace chicken in any of our menu items at no additional charge.

Tropical Smoothie Café debuts chicken-free strips

In a move to further cement its status as a forward-thinking, health-conscious restaurant brand, Atlanta-based Tropical Smoothie Café has partnered with Beyond Meat, a Los Angeles-based company that specializes in plant-based protein products that look, taste and chew just like chicken, according to a company press release. Tropical Smoothie Café, with 338 locations across the U.S., is the first national restaurant chain to serve Beyond Meat’s 100 percent plant-based chicken-free products.

The Chicken-Free Strips are a blend of soy and pea protein and mirror the taste of real chicken. Tropical Smoothie Café will debut Beyond Meat’s lightly seasoned flavor line, oven-baked with the savory spices of roasted chicken. The strips will be available to replace chicken in any of the salad, flatbread or wrap menu items at Tropical Smoothie Café at no additional charge.

“Beyond Meat’s research shows that nearly 50 percent of the U.S. population is at least open to the idea of eating less or no meat in their diet, and this aligns well with our healthier customer base,” said Mike Rotondo, CEO of Tropical Smoothie Café. “We are excited to offer this additional choice to our customers.”

Beyond Meat, which was founded in 2009, began selling its retail products in Whole Foods Market in the summer of 2012, and is not yet available in any other national restaurant chain. Other flavors in their product line include grilled and Southwest style. Per three ounce serving, Beyond Meat’s Chicken-Free Strips have 18 grams of protein and only 120 calories and 290 milligrams of sodium.

“Tropical Smoothie Café is going to really help us push our awareness and distribution to the next level,” said Beyond Meat Founder and CEO Ethan Brown. “Our product will open up their already-healthy menu to even more options.”


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