3 Recipes For St. Patrick’s Day!

These recipes will make you want to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day all year long!


  • Prep Time: 30 mins
  • Cook Time: 3 hours
  • Yield: 6 servings

Guinness Beef Stew with Cheddar Herb Dumplings

Prep time: 25 mins

Cook time: 2 hours 45 mins

Total time: 3 hours 10 mins


  • For the Stew:
  • ¼ pound bacon
  • 2 pounds boneless beef chuck, chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • Kosher salt and black pepper
  • 4 sticks celery, chopped
  • 3 large carrots, chopped
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 large potatoes or parsnips, diced
  • 1 turnip, diced
  • 3 ounces tomato paste
  • 1 (12 ounce) bottle Guinness
  • 4 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3 sprigs thyme
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch, or as needed
  • ½ pound cremini mushrooms, sliced (optional)
  • Chopped parsley
  • For the Cheddar Herb Dumplings:
  • 1 ½ cups self-rising flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/3 cup shortening
  • 3/4 cup shredded Irish sharp cheddar
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons mixed fresh herbs such as parsley, chives, and thyme, chopped
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3 Health Benefits of Sunshine

Puts you in a better mood

Exposure to sunlight is thought to increase the brain’s release of a hormone called serotonin, which is associated with boosting mood and helping a person feel calm and focused.

Improves your mental healthScreen Shot 2018-02-23 at 12.26.05 PM

Exposure to sunlight can also benefit those suffering from nonseasonal depression,              premenstrual dysphoric disorder, and in pregnant women with depression, and anxiety-related disorders.

Builds strong bones

The vitamin D made thanks to the sun plays a big role in bone health. Low vitamin D levels have been linked to rickets in children and bone-wasting diseases like osteoporosis and osteomalacia.

Courtesy of:https://www.healthline.com/health/depression/benefits-sunlight#benefits


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Finding Friends Over 60

As we age, it can get harder and harder to maintain old friendships and find new ones. Yet, friendships improve our happiness and wellbeing. Read below for our tips on how to find new friends over 60friendship-elderly-lifespan.

#1 Say YES!

Adopt a positive attitude, even when joining a new group or activity may seem nerve-wracking. Pick an activity that you are interested in, research local opportunities, then drop in and see if you can meet some kindred spirits.

#2 Initiate and Invite

When you feel ready to have new people in your home, consider inviting people to a casual dinner or pot luck. This is a great way to get to know people in a comfortable setting.

#3 Make Friendship a Priority

Once you have a few people that you like to spend time with, remember that to maintain the bond, you have to set aside time for them. It’s easier than ever to chat or text by phone, but remember to put in the work of getting together once a week in person.

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Get More Done in Less Time!

As a caregiver, you can be busy–to say the least! Peppermint Palm Senior Care provides senior placement services in Assisted Living/RCFEs, but we also like to give you tips to manage your life, no matter what level of care you need. These tips will help you get more done, have a clearer mind, and feel energetic and productive!

Placement Services in Sacramento and the Bay Area.

Placement Services in Sacramento and the Bay Area.

🎈 Work Better and Feel Healthier–Now! 🎈

#1: Use A 1-3-5 List
Don’t overestimate the number of things you can get done in a day. Plan to get one large task, three medium-sized tasks, and five small tasks done every day.

#2: Write down what’s bugging you.
Put those nagging thoughts on paper. Clearing your mind of mental clutter will help you to accomplish more and be calm.

We find placement for adults throughout the Bay Area and in Northern California, as well as Sacramento. Locating Assisted Living in Sacramento or Assisted Living in the Bay Area can be difficult, but with our resources we have helped many–and can help you too!

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Advice for Caregivers

Tips for Managing Caregiver Stress

Is it hard being a caregiver? Absolutely it is hard being a caregiver! Caregiver stress and burnout is a real phenomenon. That’s why when the time comes, Peppermint Palm Senior Care’s senior placement services in Assisted Living/RCFE make your life easier! We handle placement throughout the Bay Area and in Sacramento. Finding Assisted Living in Sacramento or Assisted Living in the Bay Area can be difficult, but with our resources we can help.

However, if you are feeling stressed as a caregiver, here are tips for managing your caregiver stress, and caregiver stress symptoms.

#1: Stop Multitasking
Experts have connected multitasking to increased stress and poor memory. Do one thing at a time, and limit your cell phone and e-mail use to working hours only. If you are using senior placement services, we can call at a time that’s best for you!

#2: Recall a Past Success

Taking five minutes to reflect on how you succeeded in other stressful situations can help you be more calm.

#3: Focus on Your Senses for a Few Minutes

For just a few minutes a day, practice mindfulness—focus only on what’s going on in the present. Focus on what you see, feel, hear, smell.

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2 Healthy New Years Resolutions

     1. healthy new years resolutions for seniorsStop Drinking. Studies show that the rate of hip fractures in older adults increases with alcohol use.

Drinking too much alcohol over a long time can have the following effects upon Adults:

  • Lead to some kinds of cancer, liver damage, immune system disorders, and brain damage
  • Worsen some health conditions like memory loss and diabetes, as well as mood disorders
  • Make some medical problems hard for doctors to find and treat—for example, alcohol causes changes in the heart and blood vessels.
  • Cause some older people to be forgetful and confused—these symptoms could be mistaken for signs of Alzheimers Disease.

2. Talk to your loved one about their anxiety or depression. 

  • If you’re concerned about an older person experiencing anxiety, depression, suicidal thoughts, or just not coping, then it is important to take the first step. Begin a conversation; your support and concern may make all the difference.
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Understanding Your Parent’s Grief

Understanding Your Parent’s Grief

A grieving person can’t function at 100 percent, so the initial months after your parent’s death aren’t a time for your parent to start new projects or make major decisions. Their normal functions will return, even though you may find them doing abnormal things. Such behavior isn’t surprising; they are grieving. Signs of grief include:

  • Forgetfulness. Your usually organized parent may miss appointments, lock their keys in the car or mail unsigned checks with his bills. You can help them by being patient, reminding them that these are symptoms of grief and suggesting that he write down reminders to themselves.
  • Disorganization. Your parent may find that it takes a lot longer to finish everyday tasks. He may not manage their time well — leaving one project unfinished and going on to something else. You might help them plan a schedule, or offer to work with them. Spending time together and focusing on something other than the grief can bring you closer together, as well as ease their sense of isolation and loneliness.
  • Inability to concentrate. During the early stages of bereavement, the mind wanders. Your newly widowed parent may find it impossible to stay focused. It may be difficult for them to read a book or even to stick with a TV show. Reading a newspaper may take longer than before, and retaining information may be difficult. You can help by highlighting important points, or even reading aloud with them. Bereaved people can be dangerous on the highways due to their inability to concentrate. They’re also susceptible to unexpected crying spells. Warn your parent to be extra careful when driving or handling potentially dangerous equipment, such as a lawn mower or even a garbage disposal in a sink.
  • Lack of interest or motivation. Your parent might say: “Why work so hard? We just die anyway” or “I was doing all this for your mother/father, and now they’re dead. Why bother?” Let them express their feelings, and offer them love and support. But if you worry that he might actually hurt themselves, or if you notice them dealing with their sadness by using alcohol or drugs, talk to their physician immediately.

Adapted from: https://americanhospice.org/working-through-grief/helping-a-grieving-parent/

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Crazy health tricks that really work

by Linda Melone

Many methods to improve your health are pretty straightforward: to lose weight, eat less and exercise more; to boost your energy, get more sleep; to prevent dehydration, drink more water. Others, however, are totally counterintuitive. The following 12 tips really do work—but they may leave you scratching your head.

#1: Drink coffee to have a better nap

Why does drinking coffee before taking a nap work? A 20-minute nap ends just as the caffeine kicks in and clears the brain of a molecule called adenosine, maximizing alertness.

#2: For healthy teeth, don’t brush after eating

Don’t brush your teeth immediately after meals and drinks, especially if they were acidic. Acidic foods—citrus fruits, sports drinks, tomatoes, soda (both diet and regular)—can soften tooth enamel

#3: To wear a smaller size, gain weight

If two women both weigh 150 pounds and only one lifts weights, the lifter will more likely fit into a smaller pant size than her sedentary counterpart. The reason: Although a pound of fat weighs the same as a pound of muscle, muscle takes up less space.

#4 To eat less, eat more

Grabbing a 100-calorie snack pack of cookies or pretzels may seem virtuous, but it’s more likely to make you hungrier than if you ate something more substantial, like string cheese or an apple with peanur butter. The protein helps fill you up.

#5 Skip energy drinks when you’re tired
Energy drinks contain up to five times more caffeine than coffee, but the boost they provide is fleeting and comes with unpleasant side effects like nervousness, irritability, and rapid heartbeat, says Goodson. Plus, energy drinks often contain high levels of taurine, a central nervous system stimulant, and upwards of 50 grams of sugar per can (that’s 13 teaspoons worth!). The sweet stuff spikes blood sugar temporarily, only to crash soon after, leaving you sluggish and foggyheaded—and reaching for another energy drink.

#7 Drink water when you’re bloated
When you feel bloated, drinking water sounds as if it would only make matters worse, but it can often help, says James Lee, MD, gastroenterologist with St. Joseph Hospital in Orange, Calif. If you’re on a high-fiber diet, for instance, then your body needs more water to work more efficiently, says Dr. Lee. “Water mixes with water soluble fiber and makes it into a gel like substance. This affects the motility of the gut and reduces the symptom of bloating.” Drinking more water also relieves bloating caused by dehydration. When you’re dehydrated, your body clings to the water your body does have, causing you to puff up.

#8 Ditch diet soda to lose weight
You should ditch all soda, including diet. Research from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health revealed that overweight and obese adults who drank diet beverages ate more calories from food than those who drank regular soda. Additionally, a University of Texas study found that diet soda drinkers had a 70% greater increase in waist circumference than non-drinkers over the course of about 10 years.

“In addition, many people think ‘low-fat,’ ‘low-sugar,’ or ‘light’ means fewer calories, but that’s not always true,” says Goodson. “Typically when manufacturers cut something out and the end result tastes just as good, they’ve added something like additional sugar.”

#9 Drink a hot beverage to cool off
Which will cool you off faster on a steamy summer morning: iced coffee or hot? Two recent studies say the latter—and so do other cultures where drinking hot tea in hot weather is the norm, like in India. When you sip a hot beverage, your body senses the change in temperature and increases your sweat production. Then, as the sweat evaporates from your skin, you cool off naturally.

#10 Exercise when you’re tired
After a long, exhausting workday, exercising sounds like the last thing you’d want to do, but getting your sweat on will actually energize you. Fatigue along with mood and depression improved after a single 30-minute moderate intensity exercise session, according to a study published in Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise. “Everything we do uses oxygen, so when you exercise it helps you work more efficiently and you don’t tire as easily,” says Nutting. “You also function better mentally.”

#11 Handwrite notes to boost your brainpower
Typing notes enables you to jot down more material, but you’re more likely to remember those notes if you handwrite them, according to research from Indiana University. “To learn something means you have processed it,” says Dr. Towfigh. “And when you take handwritten notes you ‘process’ or learn more information. You begin the learning process as you listen to the lecture.” Plus, since you look at the page on which you are writing, you naturally review the material and reinforce the information you’ve already processed, Dr. Towfigh says.

#12 To improve your relationship, spend less time together
Jumping from one social event to another without any time to come up for air could sacrifice the quality of your relationships. Spending time alone allows you to process your thoughts rather than act impulsively and, as a result, you get to know yourself better, says Elizabeth Lombardo, PhD, author of Better Than Perfect: 7 Strategies to Crush Your Inner Critic and Create a Life You Love. “Alone time enables you to be more in touch with yourself and can better give and receive,” Lombardo says. “In addition, it reduces stress and anxiety, which could also contribute to relationship strains.” Meditate, go for a walk, sit in a café and people watch, or even clean out your closet, she suggests.


via: http://www.health.com/health/gallery/0,,20857218,00.html

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Top 10 Ways to Break Bad Habits

Via LifeHacker!


We all have a bad habit or two we could stand to lose, but habits are hard to break. Whether your bad habit is procrastinating, overspending, swearing, or any other one you want to change, here are ten tips to break free of negative behavior patterns.

10. Fine Yourself for Each Offense
Make a bad habit a little more painful and you might ditch it for good. Money is a great motivator, so you can use the “swear jar” method or pay your friends $1 each time they catch you doing that thing you want to stop doing. It works the other way too: Reward yourself for beating your habit every day. 21Habit rewards or penalizes you a dollar a day for 21 days of committing to a habit.

9. Understand What Triggers Your Bad Habits
Anxiety can be a big trigger for a lot of people. Understanding how we make decisions is the key to conquering all kinds of bad habits, including money ones. Often, we repeat bad habits without even realize we’re doing them. There are cues that usually contribute to every bad habit, though, and being aware of them can help us learn what’s behind those behaviors.

8. Go Slow and Make Tiny Changes
Forming better new habits takes time and effort, but breaking established bad habits may be even harder. So be patient with yourself and instead of making dramatic adjustments, try focusing on one habit and the smallest steps you can take to “trick your inner caveman.” With food and dieting, for example, small changes like reducing one pack of sugar or switch cream in your coffee to low-fat milk can make a big difference in the long run.

7. Spend a Month Thinking About Your Habit Before Taking Action
You might be itching to get rid of that habit right now, but as mentioned above, it takes time. Before you start trying to change a habit, consider thinking about it thoroughly for a month first, listing every reason you want to stop, recording every time you catch yourself doing it, and so on. You could be better prepared to conquer the habit after this preparation.

6. Remind Your Future Self About Avoiding Bad Habits
Even with the best intentions, we fall into bad habits when our willpower fades. You might promise only to have two drinks when going out with friends, for example, but forget that promise completely as soon as you step into the bar. Try setting up reminders in your calendar for yourself for your weakest moments. Future, less hungover self will thank you.

5. Change Your Environment
Over time, if you do the same behaviors in the same place, your surroundings can become a trigger —sometimes very subtle to notice. If you go on smoke breaks in your office’s parking lot, the parking lot itself can become a cue to smoke. Switch up your surrounds in even the smallest way. The 20-Second Rule can help too: Make bad habits take 20 seconds longer to start. For example, move junk food to the back of the pantry.

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5 Ways to Eat Healthier Even When You’ve Failed Before

via HuffPost


We would all love to consistently have a perfectly healthy diet, but life often seems to get in the way and we are quick to forget our commitment to improving our diet.

Maybe you’ve set ambitious healthy eating goals in the past and you know how overwhelming it can be. But eating healthy is certainly not about being perfect. Most people tend to get much better results when they start small and make incremental changes to their current diet.

Here are five ways you can start eating healthier even when you’ve failed before.

1. Start with the drinks

Sodas and processed fruit juices are loaded with sugar, and numerous studies have shown that they promote weight gain. Lattes and other comforting beverages also contain sugar and are often high in calories. So, the first step is to stop drinking all those calories that your body doesn’t need.

To wean yourself off high calorie drinks and smoothly transition to drinking more water, you can buy natural fruit juice (with no added sugars) and gradually add water to it. You may start with half of each, and work your way up by adding more water every day.

You can also make your own drinks by adding fruit slices to water, preparing herbal teas in advance, and making your own lattes with healthy ingredients.

2. Decide that you deserve to eat real food

In our busy lives, we often sacrifice our health to convenience. There can be an underlying belief that taking time to cook and eat real food, and thus caring for our health, comes at the expense of being a good parent, getting more work done, or having social activities.

But self-care is really important and can also help us take care of others better. And it starts with making the decision that you deserve to eat real food, instead of low-quality fast food items or processed foods.

If you’ve failed at sticking to a healthy diet before, decide that you deserve something better, and that you’re worth it. Make it a real priority in your life.

3. Eat a nutritious breakfast

Taking the time to cook and eat a healthy breakfast can be challenging in our fast paced world. And about 31 million Americans do skip breakfast every day. Yet a study conducted among preschool children found that eating breakfast consistently contributes to a healthy body weight.

Oatmeal, eggs, real yogurt with berries, a smoothie, or an avocado toast are simple breakfast options that all take less than ten minutes to prepare and will often prevent you from reaching out for an unhealthy snack bar at 10am.

4. Take 30 minutes to plan your meals for the week

Thirty minutes a week might be all it takes to finally enjoy healthy meals. It’s as simple as sitting down with a pen and paper and making a list of your favorite breakfast, lunch and dinner meals.

If those meals already feature vegetables, protein, and healthy fats, go ahead and add them to your weekly meal plan. If they don’t, make a list of ten different vegetables you like and put them on the menu.

When planning your meals, don’t forget snacks and meals on the go. Here is a list of healthy items you’ll want to keep around: fresh fruit, chopped fresh vegetables, whole-grain bread, cheese, boiled eggs, nuts and seeds.

Planning your meals in advance will free up your mind as you won’t have to always worry about what to make for dinner. It can also reduce your food budget, as you will probably be eating out less often.

5. Make the right choices when you’re eating out

Let’s face it, we can’t all be cooking healthy meals every single day. But when it’s time to order at the restaurant, we often end up sabotaging our efforts despite our best intentions.

In fact, it can be easier to eat healthy at the restaurant because there are always healthy options on the menu, and you’re not the one who has to prepare the dishes.

When you place your order, be picky, and do your best to be a “classy eater”: only choose dishes that contain non-fried meat or fish, and pick salads and vegetables. It will taste great, be much healthier, and it will make you feel good about yourself.

So, here is what to do now: start by picking one of these five ways, and take action. Stick to it until it becomes a habit. Then, you can move on and add another healthy eating habit. This is how you will ultimately succeed.

Anne Ricci is dedicated to helping women make healthy food choices, boost their energy and feel good in their body. You can join her tribe at AnnesHealthyKitchen’s Community.

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