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Digest Well and Stay Chill Tips for this Xmas

With the holiday season in full bloom, food intake typically increases, healthy choices typically decrease, and lets face it, family events, big dinners and relatives can also be a tad bit stressful. All of this can increase your cortisol levels (the stress hormone), decrease DHEA, the hormone of well-being thus leading to decrease chances of a calm mind and calm tummy.
 
Here are some tips to create a healthy balanced Xmas;
 
1. Have an apple cider vinegar “shot” before your dinner
Apple cider vinegar is one of Nature’s gems health secret. It is fermented so it contains beneficial bacteria to help ease tummy woes. It contains plenty of amino acids, vitamins, minerals and salts to keep the body balanced, to aid in easing digestion and assist in washing away toxins from the body. Have 1 tsp in 4-6 ounces of water.
 
2..Stay well hydrated.
Nourishing and refresh your body by keeping yourself well hydrated this evening. I suggest for every glass of alcohol have a glass of water or a shot of coconut water to balance your system. This will help give you the energy you need to stay uplifted and feel vibrant.
 
3. Eat plenty of fiber; vegetables, fruits, flax seeds 
Veggies and fruits are low in calories and fats, but high in dietary fiber, which means they will provide you the nutrients needed to keep your GI system moving and healthy.
 High-fiber veggies include: avocado, beans, broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, carrot, chickpeas, garbanzos, eggplant, kale, collard, lima beans, mushrooms, potato, pumpkin, peppers, rhubarb, spinach, sweet potatoes and of course don’t forget flackers!
 High fiber fruits include: apple, avocado, banana, berries, figs, raisins, guava, kiwi, orange, pear, prunes.
 
 4. Keep some digestive enzymes and probiotics on hand
 Digestive enzymes help our bodies break down the food we eat. They are found in our saliva, stomachs and small intestine. Receiving the proper amount of enzymes will help prevent gas and bloating and will make you less tired. Probiotics are “good” and “friendly” bacteria that live in our intestinal tract. they keep the environment of our digestive system fertile and thriving. They keep our pH levels conducive for absorption, as well as digestion. They also support in peristalsis, the muscular contraction that moves food and waste through our digestive tract as well as providing a “boost” to the immune system.
 
Breathe….

Stay calm by reminding yourself to take a few deep breaths every hour. Deep breathing lowers your cortisol level and increases the release of dhea so that you feel better, more balanced and calmer.
 
And finally, if you get to a point where you still feel anxious or frustrated or overwhelmed just remember how lucky you are that unlike some people, that you are blessed to even have the chance to celebrate, have crazy amounts of food, friends or family and /or furry friends near you!
 
Happy Holidays!
 
 
 
 
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Posted by on December 24, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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To eat or not to eat….the tale of the toxic can of mushrooms..

Yesterday I worked for ten hours seeing sick people at the clinic and when I was done I needed a little Alison time to decompress and so naturally I went to the grocery store. I find shopping for fruits and vegetables quite soothing. I know, some people like shoes, me, it’s the produce section….Anyways, there is a global market near the clinic and so I decided to stop, see what Asian/Mexican treats were available. Needless to say I bought a plethora of interesting greens and foods, some that I still do not even know how to use or how to name – I shall experiment this evening. And I must say that I was happily distracted for at least an hour.

I walked the aisles of curry, hot sauces and seaweeds and when I stumbled across the ‘every kind of canned mushrooms’, I was super happy. I love the straw variety and decided that I definitely needed a few cans of these.

Today, as I was preparing lunch and heating up some chili that I made, I remembered that I had those delicious mushroom. So, I opened a can, rinsed and then poured them into my soup. YUM! When I was putting the can in my recycling bin I happened to see the expiration date, it said 2022. Wow, I looked again thinking it probably said 2012, but nope, clearly it said 2022. I thought, my God these little guys may live longer than me! Then I had to wonder how is that possible, feels weird? I was actually scared to look at the ingredient list especially after I noticed the 800 mg of sodium per serving…yikes!  I just had to stop and pull my eyes away but before I did, I had another thought, BPA. OMG! Of course this can also had BPA and I thought how much BPA can a  mushroom absorb between now and 2022? How old is the can to begin? I mean, if it can last until 2022, maybe it is only midway through its shelf life and this can is actually from 2002. So I am thinking that is a lot of BPA?

Jeez, I am telling you, knowledge is not always bliss!  After all was said and done I contemplated deep and hard as to whether or not I should even eat this delicious meal. I really like those mushrooms and the chili that I added it too was divine. Funny, as toxic laden as it may be, it was not an easy decision…Needless to say I am probably never going to buy canned mushrooms at the asian store again.

 
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Posted by on December 3, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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Inspired by Kale

 

Kale in my garden

Step aside spinach there is a new green in town! I am speaking about my favorite all time green, my garden growing friend and super healthy crunchy leafy green – the incredible fabulous amazing kale! Kale and its incredible health benefits have actually been around for a long time. Quietly, yes, but believe it or not there was kale before there was kale chips! I have been eating this funky looking vegetable for years and as with many good things, it is hard to keep them under the radar for too long. Eventually their amazing qualities shine bright and this year, it’s kale’s turn to be in the spotlight.

I just had my favorite kale salad, freshly picked from the garden, and I feel super energized with fabulous green power!

So here are the  many reasons I love Kale and you should too!

1. kale is a member of the Brassica family of vegetables, (also include are broccoli, cabbage and brussels sprouts) that have gained quite the reputation as potential cancer-fighting foods. Kale is packed with the organosulfur compounds that may actually help the liver neutralize potentially cancerous substances.

2. Kale is full of beta-carotene, an important nutrient for good vision also the prevention of cataracts.

3. Kale is also an excellent source of vitamin C, just one cup will give you 88% of your RDA of vitamin C which is great for your immune system and helpful for protection against viruses like the common cold as well as the flu.

4. Kale is rich in minerals, such as iron, manganese, calcium and potassium. Potassium is excellent to help reduce blood pressure. Calcium is needed for optimal bone integrity.

5. A cup of kale provides 10.4% of the daily value for fiber, which has been shown to reduce high cholesterol levels. Fiber can also help out by keeping blood sugar levels under control, so kale is an excellent vegetable for people with diabetes.

Need I say more?

Recipes:

Really easy- if you are super busy, just buy your favorite pesto (made with olive oil of course) or make your own and take the leaves off of the kale stem, compost the stem and puree the leaves with the pesto. Now you have this enriched delicious guilt free pesto..yum. Try it on your favorite cracker or a flacker, it is really divine….

Easy and cooked- sauté kale 1-2 cups (take the leafy part of the stem and toss the stem. The leafy part is the sweetest and most tender) with fresh garlic (1-2 cloves) and a little water (or extra virgin olive oil) then sprinkle with lemon juice, sea salt and/or olive oil before serving.

Easy and raw- Again take the leaves of the kale (2 cups is perfect) and place in a bowl. Add a tbsp of extra virgin olive oil, a tsp of sea salt and 2 tbsp of lemon juice then using your hands crunch up the leaves so they get soft (the salt helps to breakdown the cell walls of the kale which makes it softer and sweeter and more delicious). May add 1 cup of mushrooms and/or red onions, walnuts to get some omega-3 fatty acids and then let it marinate a little, maybe an hour then enjoy.

 
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Posted by on July 11, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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Mooooove over meat!

So as usual protein is in the news again! We do love our protein in this country and I find that most of my clients fall into one of two categories, protein neurotic (yes, that includes me too) and/or carbohydrate phobic (and yes, that also includes me).

We do in fact need protein to live, to build tissue, muscle, hair, nails. And yes protein does help with concentration and yes, it does help to keep us full. My only beef about this protein craze is that I feel so sorry for all of the animals who need to be sacrificed so that we can feel satiated! It is just not necessary. In fact, there are many fabulous alternatives where you can get all of your protein needs met and no animal cruelty at all!!!

here are some ideas:

Spinach: 1 cup 5 grams of protein

Broccoli; 1 cup 5 grams of protein

Quinoa:  11g Protein / Cup

Lentils:  18g  Protein / Cup

Black, Kidney, Mung,& Pinto Beans:  15g Protein / Cup

Almonds: ¼ cup – 8 grams protein

Sunflower seeds, ¼ cup – 6 grams of protein

Tempeh:  24g Protein / 4 Ounces

Spirulina:  6g Protein / 10 grams

Hemp Seeds/Flax seeds: 10-16g Protein / 3 tbsp

So mooooove over meat and say hello to live sources, healthy plant-based sources of protein that are cruelty free, environmentally friendly and yummy. And to top it all off these other sources of plant-based protein also contain many other vitamins and minerals essential for healthy living as well. So you get your protein fix and way more! Just as the doctor ordered….

 
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Posted by on June 25, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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