Monday, January 23, 2012
Eating clean seems to be relative – I guess it all depends what you want to get away from. For our family, the focus is on lowering cholesterol, cancer prevention and avoiding Type II diabetes. When you eat for these purposes, you also lose weight, because of course you are eating healthier.
I found several “eat clean” websites, but was surprised to see whole grain wheat flour being used (gluten) and soy milk in recipes. Besides the estrogenic properties of soy, unless organic and certified non-GMO, the seeds of soybeans are impregnated with Round Up herbicide so as to resist Round Up effects when the soybean fields are sprayed. Soybeans also take up more trace metals from the ground than any other plant in the plant kingdom. These are three very good reasons to avoid soy – I am not sure which bothers me more, the estrogenic properties that are thought to contribute to a lot of infertility problems and miscarriages in today’s “health conscience” society as young women think they are making a healthy choice, or the fact that we are consuming traces of herbicide when we eat unfermented soy products, such as milk. Although my family does not have allergies to either gluten or soy, the first we have cut back on in our eating as much as 80%, and the latter 100% (reading labels as soybean oil is in a LOT of foods, including gluten free crackers). We have become a very healthy family since we started reading labels and mostly whole foods.
Several times a year my husband and I do a full body detoxification by eliminating all allergenic foods for various periods of time – these include wheat/gluten (this includes oats, buckwheat, barley), dairy, soy, vinegar (which can cause fermentation in the gut), caffeine and sugar. The main focus is to cleanse the liver so it can do its job of removing toxins, that we expose ourselves to daily, from our body. A healthy liver is able to help the body lose weight, and necessary for successful weight loss. It’s a great way to start the new year, and on this day 19 I have lost 10.5 lbs. so far.
Today’s recipe idea is what I call a CLEAN mushroom soup, made with almond milk, and gluten free. Portabellas were used, but the more affordable white button mushroom can be substituted. Recent findings show that white button mushrooms contain an enzyme that helps inhibit aromatase activity, and subsequently estrogen production. Therefore, white button mushrooms can help reduce the risk of breast and prostrate cancer.
We are personal fans of the more flavorful portabella mushrooms. One medium portabella mushroom has even more potassium than a banana or a glass of orange juice. One serving of mushrooms also provides about 20 to 40 percent of the daily value of copper, a mineral that has cardio-protective properties.Mushrooms are a rich source of riboflavin, niacin, and selenium. Selenium is an antioxidant that works with vitamin E to protect cells from the damaging effects of free radicals. Male health professionals who consumed twice the recommended daily intake of selenium cut their risk of prostate cancer by 65 percent.
So how about some mushroom soup? I have to say that a number of years ago there was a restaurant in the area called Morels. Their wild mushroom soup was famous, and as I enjoyed the soup I am sharing today, it reminded me of that particular soup – I do believe the almond milk made for one of the best mushroom soups I have tasted to date.
3 cups chicken stock, homemade is most flavorful (vegetarian soup stock is fine)
20 oz. Portabella mushrooms, rinsed and sliced
1 medium onion
3 large cloves garlic, minced
1 T. olive oil
3 c. + 3 T. Silk plain almond milk
4 T. almond flour
Himalayan sea salt
Saute chopped onion and minced garlic in olive oil until onion is translucent. Add to chicken stock placed in a large soup kettle.
Slice mushrooms, using either a knife or an egg slicer, add to stock.
Add in 3 cups of plain almond milk.
Make a slurry in a small bowl by adding 1 T. almond milk in a small bowl, adding in almond flour; alternate between almond milk and almond flour until blended. Slowly stir into soup. Continue stirring. Heat through and serve.
Saute’d chicken bites with onion and garlic
Gaucamole with chopped fresh tomato
Brown rice/vegetable pilaf
I want to point out that Himalayan sea salt is superior in health benefits, to white, processed table OR SEA salt. Look for salt that is pinkish in color as opposed to white. It has more flavor and lesss is needed. Also, we use SILK brand almond milk as it does not contain soy milk mixed in. If you want a thicker, more creamy soup use brown rice flour rather than the almond flower, as it does make a better slurry to add into your soup.
To your health!
Saturday, January 21, 2012
If you are looking for a great blender for smoothies I highly recommend this system - it turns ice cubes into fine ice in seconds. I always use either ice cubes or frozen fruit in my breakfast smoothies and my meal is made in about 2 minutes. I wanted and needed quick and convenient...and since teaming up the Ninja pro with my AB pea/rice/cranberry based protein shake it has been a win win!
I've been eyeing juicers - but I don't want to waste my grocery bill by tossing pulp into compost. As well, the greater part of the nutrients is within the pulp. I don't have time to bake with pulp (all I can think of to do with it is to make muffins). I have watched the infomercials for the Ninja kitchen system - which makes juice with no pulp - however, a friend bought this and said it is definitely thick, not juice-like to drink. He ended up taking it back.
Curious, I decided to see if the Ninja could handle parsley or cilantro - grass like smoothie ingredients, both excellent for liver detoxification. As I read reviews on juicers it seems there are masticating kind, which do great with ingredients such as wheat grass - but fail at root vegetables such as beets; and then there are the heavy wattage juicers...great with making juice from anything other than grass like ingredients.
Monday, January 16, 2012
The set has 3 books and 6 DVDs, one of the books includes some recipes. The DVDs are titled:
- 3 Steps to Incredible Health
- Eating for Incredible health
- Say No to Heart Disease and Diabetes
- Winning the War Against Cancer
- The Skinny on Fats
- Success Stories Before and After
We watched the first video and thought I would share Dr. Fuhrman's G.O.M.B.S. top 5 anti-cancer food recommendations.
G = Greens. Green vegetables contain many different nutrients and organisms that create a slippery coating on the inside of your blood vessels. Greens activate something called the Nrf2 mechanism that prevents plaque from sticking and speeds up the rate at which fat melts away – all this occurs inside our tiny blood vessels. Basically, think of eating greens as a way of cleaning out your blood vessels and coating them with protection.
O = Onions. When you cut an onion, you cry for good reason. The gas released actually creates disulfides and anti-cancer nutrients that are formed. A large study in Europe revealed that people who ate onions regularly showed a 60% – 70% reduction in all major cancers. Source -The Medical Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Think of preventing ovarian cancer or prostate cancer just by eating more onions… I am so glad we cook with mushrooms constantly, but I do wish they would not make me cry so!
M = Mushrooms. Recently a study published in the International Journal of Cancer showed that women who regularly consumed about 10 grams (that’s a small handful of sliced mushrooms, usually 1) are 64% less likely to develop breast cancer. This study went even further to reveal that the group of women who ate this same amount of mushrooms daily along with regular consumption of greens or green tea were 89% less likely to develop breast cancer. This research is more than mind-boggling, it’s significant, remarkable, and extraordinary news that inspires and encourages the need to eat healthier foods – all from about 1 mushroom, wow.
B = Beans and Berries. Beans and berries have highly potent, concentrated levels of anti-cancer antioxidants. They promote healthy brain function as well.
S = Seeds. Raw seeds and nuts contain phytochemicals and good fats that work to reduce cholesterol, help our bodies better absorb important micronutrients, and decrease inflammation. ADD NUTS AND SEEDS whole and raw to your salads - the properties of these good fats allow your body to absorb the micro nutrients of the salad 10X as much than if you ate them as a snack on the side.
I also learned that mushrooms must be cooked! Light cooking of mushrooms dissipates the toxins, and promotes anti oxidant benefits which help fight cancer. Per Fuhrman t is important to know which vegetables should be consumed raw and which should be cooked, which we will learn as we go through the DVDs and books. Also, you can lose micro-nutrients in some vegetables by chopping them after being cooked, therefore it is important to know which vegetables should be cut before being cooked.
Fortunately, we find that we eat GOMBS quite regularly - especially since all are within acceptance of the elimination/detox diet we are currently doing. I look forward to sharing more as I learn.
To your health,
Friday, January 13, 2012
I use plain, unsweetened probiotic yogurt in this recipe - organic if you can find it, would be the healthiest choice. Look to ensure your yogurt has live cultures, and is not sweetened with lots of "ose" words and artificial sweeteners. An unsweetened, plain yogurt will taste, in comparison to sour cream. (In fact, we use it in place of sour cream on our tacos, etc.)
It is pretty quick and simple - as our daughter is the only one who uses ranch dressing (the rest are vinegrette people) I make small batches. She likes to dip carrots, celery, etc. for snacking. It is also mayonaise free as it is difficult to find a store bought mayo that I would consider "clean" to eat.
1/2 Cup Plain Yogurt
1 tsp. Garlic Powder
1 T. lemon juice or balsamic vinegar (to taste)
1 t. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/4 tsp. Sea Salt (Himilayan preferred)
1/4 tsp. ground Celery Seed
1/2 tsp. organic raw Stevia, or organic honey
1/4 tsp. freshly ground Pepper
1/4 t. turmeric (optional)
1/2 tsp. dried Parsley
1/2 t. dried chives
1/8 t. white pepper
1/8 cup of bGH FREE skim milk (rice or coconut milk are good, non dairy choices)
Combine all ingredients well with a small wire whisk or in a blender. Add milk to thin to desired consistency. Taste, and adjust seasonings as desired. Refrigerate.
So for all you ranch dressing lovers - I hope this helps and you like it. The turmeric will make this dressing more flavorful and healthful, but if the yellow tint in your dressing will turn of those you would like to eat it from doing so, skip it. Adjust herbs and spices 'til you get the marriage of flavors desired.
To your health, thanks for the reminders Diane!
Yet both Dr. Russel Blaylock and Dr. Chris Kressler, and others, divulge in their publications the irony that both organizations put their seal of approval on food products that contribute to both heart disease and diabetes. Have we as Americans bought into this? You bet we do!
For years I thought eating Cheerios was a smart choice - because the heart association said it helps lower cholesterol? Really? Refined processed flours, simple carbs - contribute more to high cholesterol numbers than a fat, juicy steak!
It boils down to glucose and insulin - simple carbs are treated like table sugar in our body (I learned this from Dr. John Lee in hish book, "What your doctor may not tell you about breast cancer".) To learn more about insulin resistance visit http://insulinresistanceguide.com
I won't get too technical here, but we all know what too much sugar does to our body, right? Well, if simple carbs from refined, processed flours are treated just as table sugar ....big revelation, don't you think? Well, it was for me and this realization is what made me turn my lifestyle around.
The number one food toxin, per Dr Kressler, is cereal grains - especially that made with refined flours. Which is pretty much ALL! In minute amounts its not going to cause sickness and disease, but we as a population eat a greater percentage of cereal grains than all other foods. Kresser titles "Cereal grains - the unhealthiest "health food" on the planet". Wheat, corn, rice, barley, sorghum, oats, eye and millet have become staples in our diet. They have also become, as he puts it, "poster children" of the low fat, high carbohydrate diet promoted by organizations like the American Heart Association and American Diabetes Association. Grains with gluten are the worst as it damages the intestine and makes it leaky - per Kressler. Blaylock concurs in his newsletters as well.
Leaky guts cause things to enter the bloodstream that should not, to put it simply, including undigested gluten proteins. This causes an immune system response that can lead to auto immune disease, allergies and more.
Interesting, don't you think? This certainly helps explain why so many adults develop allergies, Celiac's disease and more. Researchers now believe that one of the major predisposing factors for conditions like obesity, diabetes and even heart disease.
Does this mean give up grains forever? No, not necessarily - I guess that depends on your health and symptoms. For myself, my health turned around when I gave up cereal grains (other than organic quinoa and brown rice) 50%, then 75%, working up to 90% - not missing the breads and such much at all. I have "indulgent days" - such as Friday morning with my daughter at the local coffeehouse and I enjoy a bakery treat, or maybe a pastry with my family on Sunday after worship.
The real message today - don't believe everything you see on labels at the grocery store. The job of the manufactuer is to MAKE YOU WANT to buy it. What about trusting the AHA and ADA? Food for thought...if we did not eat the same foods they promote, we might put them out of business. The head haunch of the American Cancer Society makes multiple millions a year, no doubt the counterparts in these other organizations do as well.
The bottom line is money, the bottom line is not conceren for our well being, although we trust these endorsements because marketing is such a driving force in our world.
All that I continue to learn certainly has made me take a good look at my charitable giving these past two years. The veil has been lifted and the curtain torn in two, as far as I am concerned.
To your health,
Monday, January 9, 2012
Come to learn more on Sunday at Crossroads Coffeehouse from 3-5 pm as we kick of a community group - Vitality 2012.
Today is a couple thoughts about beverages...now, I am referring to health drinks. Not soda, and not even energy drinks, as both are the opposite of health drinks.
This is a complete cut and paste, and wish I could remember from whom I found this - but I do believe it was Dr. Mercola's web site although I JUST downloaded 4 Myths- Sick, Tired, Fat by Dr. Kresser (another web site I just subscribed to) and he reiterates the same thing.
4 health drinks to avoid
Here are 4 of the top so-called "healthy" offenders:
NUMBER 1: 100% "Natural" fruit juice
Ok. Yes. Fruit juice is a better choice than drinking fake high-fructose corn syrup juice … but … it's still a truck-load of calories per ounce of liquid.
On top of that, it has almost all of the blood sugar regulating fiber stripped out of the fruit—this means the natural fruit sugars will trigger insulin surges and send your blood sugar soaring into the diabetic range!
NOT what you want at all.
This is a BIG one because most parents think fruit juice is a "healthy" choice for their children … but … the science shows it's definitely not.
In a study* of 4 to 12 year old children researchers from Deakin University found children who drank more than two glasses (500ml) of fruit juice/drinks per day were more likely to be overweight or obese.
"These odds increased as the amounts of fruit juice/drink consumed increased," Dr Sanigorski said. "Children who drank more than three glasses of soft drink (three quarters of a litre/750ml) or 4 glasses of fruit juice/drinks (1 litre) on the day in question were more than twice as likely to be overweight or obese compared with children who did not drink these drinks."
So the best thing to do is keep fruit juices far out of the hands of our children.
But it's not just the kids who fall prey to these health wrecking Trojan horses—adults fall for it too!
In fact, one particular juice is extremely dangerous for ANY man to consume …
Can you guess what it is?
100% Pure Orange Juice.
Orange Juice is rich in IRON … which is potentially toxic if your blood levels become too high.
The reason men have to worry about consuming too much orange juice (as little as two big glasses each day) is because we men don't menstruate each month … … And that means we lack an efficient method of clearing excess iron from our blood each month.
The "healthy" glass of orange juice you're having at breakfast not only spikes your insulin levels into diabetic ranges (which … along with your energy … will come plummeting down later in the morning) …
… But if you're a man it can also be loading your body with a potentially dangerous heavy metal.
So with all this in mind …
It's a much better idea to EAT fruit the way nature intended, with all of the fiber intact, and use a whole foods base multi-vitamin/antioxidant supplement to get enough of the super-nutrients contained in fruit juice.
Let's move onward …
NUMBER 2: Soy Milk
This used to be an often recommended "healthy" alternative to milk …
The truth is:
Most soy products these days are heavily processed with little nutrient density… and … this includes most soy milk you see at the grocery store.
Without question, most soy milk has become too sugary and is controlled by the same food and beverage giants that are still manufacturing and marketing other products that promote degenerative disease.
What's more: high levels of soy consumption have been linked with un-naturally high levels of estrogen production in both men and women …
For men this is death to your sex drive, decreased sperm production and could cause problems such as gynecomastia (abnormal enlargement of men's breasts) …
… For women, even though estrogen is considered a "female sex hormone" … like most anything … too much of it is also bad.
Estrogen dominance has been linked to thyroid disruption, a host of autoimmune diseases and some research questions the connection to hormone sensitive cancers such as breast cancer.
Your best bet? Just avoid it.
And whatever you do, if you are raising a small child, do not feed your child soy-based breast milk replacement products …
… Hopefully, the potential dangers of this commonly accepted practice are evident now.
That said, not all soy is bad …
The only soy based food I have found that is in it's fairly natural state is edamame (green vegetable soypods found at most high-end Japanese restaurants).
Keep in mind I still eat it VERY rarely if I'm dining out or added to a healthy stir fry using walnut, macadamia nut or grapeseed oil.
Speaking of dining out … here's one to REALLY avoid …
NUMBER 3: Crappuccinos
Ok, I mean Cappuccino, but I'm really referring to those high priced gourmet coffee drinks.
While black coffee can help you burn fat because the caffeine content gives your metabolism a slight boost, these tempting coffee calorie hogs can hide up to 1,000 calories!
In one drink!
YES … you are correct … that's insane!
Still craving one of these gourmet coffee drinks?
You can make your own fat-burning version pretty easily:
You'll start by spooning sugar-free, nonfat vanilla yogurt in an ice cube tray and freezing it into cubes overnight.
Then you'll add them to a blender with a splash of organic fat-free milk, a teaspoon of instant coffee crystals, and a scoop of natural vanilla or chocolate whey protein powder.
Lastly, just sprinkle on some cinnamon to add a little fat-burning kick. If you want to cut down on the caffeine, just use decaffeinated instant coffee instead.
This will taste so good that you'll swear it isn't good for you, but it definitely is … and … it's much lower calories than those commercial brands!
Plus, the added protein will give your metabolism a good nudge and help to power your muscles throughout the day.
And last but not least, here is …
NUMBER 4: Zero Calorie Flavored Waters
The good news is these are 0 calories.
That's where the good news stops though …
… most of these still use questionable artificial sweeteners which have been shown to inhibit fat burning, increase appetite, and block the absorption of nutrients into your body in a variety of studies.
Don't be too bummed out though…
A couple of 0 cal flavored drinks use the all-natural stevia plant as a sweetener, include Zevia (a stevia based soft drink), and the 0 cal varieties of Sobe Lifewater for example.
So your best bet?
If you need a little more taste than water every once in a while—look for one of the brands I just mentioned …
… Or … you could always squeeze some lemon in water and maybe add a natural sweetener like stevia to satisfy your taste buds.
So now that you know some top diet drink disasters to avoid … and … you know a few good alternatives to popular "health" drinks.
I hope you found that information helpful. Today, for the first time ever I drank more than half my body weight in ounces! I drank a 32 oz bottle of body cleansing solution mixed with water and was done by 10 am! I then managed two more 32 oz bottles during the day. At bible study I drank a large mug of detox tea, and two protein shakes. I should be floating!
I do feel more skinny and my pants are loose - celebrating my little moment in the spotlight as the top person in a privage Biggest Loser challene I am a part of.
to your health!
Sunday, January 8, 2012
Friday, January 6, 2012
Gluten and Lactose Free Chicken Pot Pie Soup
1 32 oz carton organic chicken broth or stock
2 c. almond milk
4-6 cups vegetables - broccoli/cauliflower florets and julienne carrots
1 red bell pepper diced
3-4 chicken breasts cut into bite sized pieces
1 onion, diced
3 stalks celery, chopped
4-6 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 c. brown rice
Shitake mushrooms (optional)
1/4 c. rice flour
1/2 c cold water
Cut chicken into bite sized pieces. Cook chicken, onions and garlic in EVOO with touch of turmeric spice. Set aside.
Place vegetables and rice in kettle with broth on simmer (just under a boil). Tonight I used Freshlike vegis from the freezer section as florets were done and carrots julienned - after a long day at work - easy!
Add Mural of Flavor from Penzeys or other spice as desired. Keep an eye on soup and add water or more broth if needed for rice to cook.
Add 2 cups almond milk once rice is cooked, plus additional spices if desired.
Make a surry with rice flour and cold water and slowly add, heat through, stirring.
Almond milk will bubble a lot if lid is left on kettle. I forgot the mushrooms at the store but it was still packed with flavor - I think sauteeing the chicken with garlic and onions make it sing!
We made it with quinoa at Abby's request - it tasted good but the quinoa is going to get quite mushy with reheats, and I am not fond of mush texture. RICE is my recommendation!
I was also very disappointed when I realized I forgot mushrooms at the store as I love shitakes! next time!
I will note that I also did not buy celery as I am not a huge fan - however, tonight I read that celery contains a good amount of a flavanoid called apigenin, that prohibits the cancer causing enzyme aromatase from growing and spreading. I want to learn to LOVE celery!
A cancer preventative benefit of onions is that it contains quercetin, which also inhibits aromatase, although celery is the winner with quantity. If you like turmeric add more in to your soup as well as it contains curcumin - another POWERFUL nutrient on the cancer prevntion/healing list.
To your health!
Monday, January 2, 2012
I came across such a link in my rolling list just now, Dr. Myhill of the United Kingdom, and one section in particular was very interesting. Although the article focuses on WHY we NEED nutritional supplements this day and age, I thought some of the info to be useful for an upcoming presentation on the reason we detox. The entire read on nutritional supplements is HERE, but below is the part I felt important to share right off. I do know it is difficult to lose unwanted weight if your body is deficient on a number of nutrients.
- Increasing toxic stress of Western environments
Xenobiotic chemicals (pesticides, volatile organic compounds and heavy metals) all need to be detoxified and excreted from the body, but this process is highly demanding of micronutrients. Our increasing xenobiotic load increases micronutrient requirements. Furthermore, xenobiotics are directly anti-nutrient: so, for example, nickel increases our requirement for zinc; fluoride increases our need for iodine; and mercury increases our need for selenium.
Xenobiotics come from:
Contamination of our food and water in ways indicated above.
Contamination by packaging – many products are wrapped, and sometimes cooked, in plastics with phthalates leeching into food.
Contamination of the environment by persistent organic pollutants from agricultural industry, polluting industry, war, fires, road traffic and waste disposal.
Cosmetics often contain volatile organic chemicals and/or heavy metals such as nickel and aluminium – this increases the toxic load and thereby the requirements for micronutrients to detoxify them.
Jewellery and piercings increase exposure to toxic metals.
Prescription medication – the best example of this would be the malabsorption induced by proton pump inhibitors and other acid blockers, resulting in an increased risk of osteoporosis. Most drug side effects result from micronutrient deficiencies.
The medication of healthy people, including children, with vaccinations which often contain heavy metals together with live or attenuated viruses. Vaccinations have immune disrupting potential and the potential to switch on novel disease processes.
Dental work and surgical prostheses – these often involve use of heavy metals such as mercury, palladium, titanium, nickel, gold and silicones, all of which may be toxic either directly or through their potential to disrupt the immune system.
Much of the above is a recap of previous posts I have shared from doctors Blaylock, Mercola and Weil's newsletters, but I always find affirmation in my sources when I see multiple doctors stating the same thing.
If you have a new years resolution to lose weight, be aware that most of us are deficient on more than one nutrient. Also be aware that when it comes to vitamin supplementation you truly get what you pay for. The less it costs the more likely you are gaining little nutritional benefit and instead your money spent is being flushed, if you know what I mean. (LOL)
I encourage you to get the best vitamin supplementation you can afford. Sometimes all one has to do is make the decision to give up soda, or daily Starbucks, and exchange those expenses for an investment in one's health. Often times we do not realize how much our little habits add up, and an exchange for a healthier option is going to be one of the greatest investments you can make in your own health. It is the type of gift that keeps on giving as you begin to feel better and become more healthy. From a personal experience, I can think of no better gift to give my family.
To your health,
Sunday, January 1, 2012
Suggested Side Dishes:
Alaskan Wild Caught Cod seasoned with Penzey’s Mural of Flavor seasoning, steamed.