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    The Best Portable Grills for Barbecuing Outdoors Like a Pro

    One of the most satisfying rituals of being in the outdoors is scouring the woods for downed branches and logs to build a fire. Flames that you brought to life are then only naturally followed by grilling up a succulent meal, whether that’s on a skewer of charred veggies or a few links of split-open sausages. But making a fire to cook up some vittles is sometimes tough to manage—the forest may have already been cleaned of fallen wood, you’re in a parking lot after a long day of skiing, or camping in area where open fires are strictly forbidden. That’s where portable grills come in handy.

     
    Portable grills can mean the difference between a ho-hum bagged meal rehydrated with boiled water and a meal of flame-licked meats, starches, and veggies. Whether fueled by wood, charcoal, or gas, we tested the top portable grills for outdoor lovers, from super slim, packable options to big, rowdy cookers that can satisfy a crowd.

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    1. Primus Kuchoma
    This handsome, lightweight propane-powered grill has modern Scandinavian design cues like a wood-faced handle, stainless steel folding legs, and boxy lid with triangular vent holes. The 16×9-inch grilling surface is made from a non-stick ceramic and rests over a stainless drip tray, both easily removable for washing. An integrated Piezo ignitor blasts off a powerful 8,500 Btus of indirect, hot dog-roasting heat.[$190; primus.us]
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    2. Solo Stove Grill
    Solo Stove has mastered building fire pits that use managed air flow for efficient burning of combustibles like wood and charcoal. Its beefy new grill brings that design to a cheeseburger near you in a sleek stainless steel drum-like form that rests on a 13-inch high aluminum frame. It’s a fairly big unit, with a generous 480 square inches of circular grilling area, so is ideally suited for outings like group camping or tailgating. The kit comes with grilling tools, heavy-duty cover, carrying case, plus 4 pounds of briquettes and four fire starters.[$775; solostove.com]
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    3. Snow Peak Takibi Fire & Grill
    Crafted out of solid and sturdy stainless steel, the Takibi grill is an investment you’ll end up owning for years. The fold-up design makes stowing and deploying this mighty mite a cinch, and the strategically placed air holes and bottom vent create the optimum environment for efficiently burning your fuel, whether wood or charcoal. The burly mesh grill grate—with 290 square inches of cooking area—has adjustable legs to maximum heat levels for ultimate grilling goodness.[$320; snowpeak.com]
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    4. UCO Flatpack Grill & Firepit
    This is the grill you’ll want to pack for any trips where light and versatile are the key words. It only weighs slightly over 3 pounds and folds down to the size of a thin three-ring binder, making it easy to slip in a pack or leave in the back of your truck for impromptu burger sessions, or any on-the-go fire pit opportunities. The durable stainless steel grill is a bit small though, as it only gives you 130 square inches of grill space, and the grate is a little flimsy, but it’s the perfect solution for two- or three-man trips into the backcountry.[$50; ucogear.com]
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    5. NomadiQ Portable Gas Grill
    The clever, folding suitcase-like design of this propane grill makes deploying it up in front of BBQ buddies a neat trick. Even cooler are all of the trick features like integrated electronic ignitor, cast iron grill grates that give you 226 square inches of cooking room, and almost 10,000 Btus of flame power. Made from powder-coated steel, with stainless burners, the NomadiQ is a bit heavy at 12 pounds but the included carrying strap helps manage the load.[$400; nomadiqgrills.com]
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    6. HitchFire Forge 15
    One annoying thing about toting along your grill when out and about in the outdoors is that inevitably, after a few grill-downs, your trusty appliance will become coated with grease. Which is not something you want to toss in your rig. But with the HitchFire, you get portability outside of your vehicle, plus the convenience of having a swing-out grill that’s ready to go and at a back-friendly, waist height. It uses two of the green 1-pound propane camping propane canisters that nestle neatly under each side, and the grill is removable so you can use it on a picnic tabletop.[$449; hitchfire.com]
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    Scientists Investigate: Is a Low-Fat, Plant-Based Diet Better Than Keto?

    It can be supremely frustrating trying to figure out what type of meal plan works best for you. There are so many fads and trends, all battling against solid advice and reputable research. Finding the right nutritional balance can be overwhelming—fast. It’s enough to make a guy give up and revert to continuously snacking on bags of baby carrots. But a recent study from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has shed a little more light on this diet dilemma by pitting perennially dueling macros—carbs and fats—against each other. What’s better: keto or a low-fat, plant-based diet?

    In the small but controlled four-week study, researchers analyzed 20 diabetes-free adults and found those who ate a low-fat, higher-carb plant-based diet consumed fewer daily calories—550 to 700 fewer—compared to subjects on a low-carb, higher-fat animal-based plan, or a ketogenic diet. And, even though the subjects on the low-fat, high-carb diet consumed less overall, they ended up with higher insulin and blood glucose levels. Possibly a result of three-quarters of their meals containing carbohydrates.

    None of the subjects gained any weight even though all had access to three meals a day, plus snacks, and could eat as much as they wanted. There were also, between the two diets, no differences in hunger, enjoyment of meals, or satiety. And though both groups also lost weight, only the participants on the low-fat diet burned off a good amount of body fat (plus the high-fat subjects didn’t gain any fat).
    The study macro breakdown for the plant-based, low-fat diet folks was 10 percent fat and 75 percent carbs, while the animal-based, low-carb people ate 10 percent carbs and 76 percent fat. Each meal included about 14 percent protein. All meals were minimally processed with about the same amounts of veggies.
    Chelsea Kyle for Men’s Journal

    “Interestingly, our findings suggest benefits to both diets, at least in the short-term. While the low-fat, plant-based diet helps curb appetite, the animal-based, low-carb diet resulted in lower and more steady insulin and glucose levels,” said study lead Kevin Hall, Ph.D., a senior investigator at the NIH.

    “Despite eating food with an abundance of high-glycemic carbohydrates that resulted in pronounced swings in blood glucose and insulin, people eating the plant-based, low-fat diet showed a significant reduction in calorie intake and loss of body fat, which challenges the idea that high-carb diets per se lead people to overeat. On the other hand, the animal-based, low-carb diet did not result in weight gain despite being high in fat,” he said.
    Though the study doesn’t provide a solid answer to whether or not you should eat carbs over fat or vice versa, it does help show that consuming too many carbs daily can mess with your insulin levels, which over the long term, could lead to pre-diabietes or worse. And that, as has been shown before, eating high levels of fat doesn’t neccssairly lead to weight can or increase in fat stores.
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    The Unique Health Benefits of Every Type of Milk

    Dairy gets put in the hot seat every other month it seems. One good thing to come from all the attention, though, is that companies have scrambled to come up with dairy milk alternatives that meet consumers’ demands, whether it’s “milk” that’s lower in calories, free of lactose, void of stomach-curdling proteins, or something else […] More

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    How to Heal Common Health Ailments With Food

    It’s easy to turn to the medicine cabinet when you’ve got a migraine or stomachache. And while popping a pill is usually the fastest way to treat common health ailments, making some tweaks to what you put on your plate may be a better way to heal your body in the long run and sidestep those health issues in the first place.

    “Good nutrition and an understanding of what works best for your individual body can help you avoid myriad ailments,” says Jen Bruning, a registered dietician nutritionist and media spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Here are some everyday issues you might be experiencing along with the common foods that might be contributing to them. Keep reading for more about what you should consider cutting out, plus the foods you should load up on instead.
    How to Heal Common Health Ailments With Food
    1. Inflammation
    It gets a bad rap, but not all inflammation is to be avoided. “Some levels of inflammation are needed as they play a role in healing and injury repair,” says Pamela Nisevich Bede, a registered dietician and author of Sweat. Eat. Repeat. Chronic inflammation, on the other hand, overworks your immune system and can lead to  heart disease, diabetes, and cancer.
    You can’t feel chronic inflammation the way you’re aware of acute inflammation after a cut or burn. But to be proactive to ward it off, reduce your intake of sugars, refined grains, and processed foods, advises Nisevich Bede. Up the antioxidant-rich fruits and vegetables in your diet instead—tart cherry juice is a heavy hitter—plus omega-3-rich fish, flaxseed, and walnuts. Turmeric has also been shown to be anti-inflammatory, but adding the spice to your food isn’t usually enough to get an effective dose, says Nisevich Bede; try a supplement instead.

    2. Migraines
    “There are no universal trigger foods, and for many people food alone may not be the cause of migraines,” says Bruning. But there are definitely some common culprits you should try cutting out first if these headaches frequently leave you sidelined. Start by steering clear of chocolate, caffeine, and alcohol—especially red wine. If nixing those doesn’t help, you might need to trim out foods like aged cheeses and cured meats (what’s charcuterie without some red wine, anyway?). Certain preservatives can also contribute to migraines. “A diet rich in fresh, minimally processed foods may help those with many food triggers,” says Bruning, who suggests consulting a nutritionist who specializes in migraine to help you find relief.
    3. GI Distress
    If constipation is the concern, you’re likely not getting enough fiber; focus on eating lots of fruits, vegetables, beans, and whole grains. With other gastrointestinal issues, there unfortunately are no obvious offenders—but you can bet your diet is responsible. Caffeine may be the culprit, so you can start by cutting back on coffee. Often, stomach troubles are the result of eating something you’re not accustomed to—hot peppers if you don’t typically go for spicy food, for example, or maybe red meat if you usually stick to a low-fat diet. “The best way to prevent GI distress is to know what triggers your system and avoid those foods,” says Bruning. “Pay attention to how you feel after eating different types of meals to determine what works best for your body.”
    If your stomach issues kick in mid-workout, take a look at the food you’re eating to fuel up. “Intolerances stemming from a sensitivity to a source of carbohydrate—often gluten or lactose or a simple sugar like fructose or glucose—are common sources of GI distress and often afflict my clients during runs and workouts,” says Nisevich Bede. Swapping in a new snack pre- or mid-workout could squash your stomach troubles.

    4. Fatigue
    A lack of energy can result from a quick boost of glucose in the bloodstream, followed by a crash as our bodies absorb that fuel, says Bruning. If you’re constantly crashing, cut out refined flours and sugary foods like sweet snack bars or soda. Focus instead on getting lots of complex carbohydrates, healthy fats, and proteins—like avocado toast with a fried egg or a banana and almond butter. “Together these will help slow the absorptive process and lead to sustained energy without the crash later on,” she says.
    Your issue might also just be that you need more water. “Generally, I find that fatigue stems from either dehydration or inadequate recovery from a workout,” says Nisevich Bede. Make sure to drink enough water and drinks or food to replace electrolytes, like pickles, bananas, spinach, and dairy (maybe not all together). To keep from feeling zapped post-workout, she recommends focusing on rehydrating and getting about 30 grams of high-quality protein.

    5. Anxiety
    Feeling antsy all the time? In a shock to no one, caffeine may worsen anxiety. As a first step to ward off stress, cut back on coffee, energy drinks, and chocolate. We know herbal tea isn’t the same, especially when you’ve got to stay on your game for all-day Zoom meetings; see above for fatigue-fighting foods to keep you revved without the anxious side effects. Also reach for fatty fish like salmon, shellfish, fermented foods (e.g., sauerkraut and kimchi), and foods with magnesium and choline (like beans and cashews); these are all proven stress-fighting foods.
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    This Kind of Tea Can Cut Your Risk of Heart Disease by 50 Percent

    A hot cup of tea can soothe your throat and sinuses when you’re battling a cold, but emerging research shows the health benefits of the beverage actually go much deeper. A new study published in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology has found that drinking tea at least three times a week is linked with a […] More

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    The Best Diets of 2020 for Weight Loss and Long-Term Health, Ranked

    If losing weight—or just eating healthy—is on your list of New Year’s resolutions, you’re likely thinking about diet plans and how to pick the right one for your goals. And it’s probably giving you a headache. With so many different diets and eating philosophies out there, it can be hard to cut through the hype […] More