I have been trying to find healthy alternatives for my family for a long time. Pancakes are something that I have ALWAYS LOVED! When I wrote about the Banana Pancakes, I think I detailed my love for pancakes and how I used to smell them from all the way upstairs when my father made them for me as a kid! But, the problem with pancakes is that they stick to my rear-end, and not in a good way. And, on top of that, they are full of empty calories, white flour, and no nutrition whatsoever. If I am going to make pancakes for my family , I want them to have the experience that I had except I want those pancakes to be LOADED with NUTRITION!
that our bodies need. They provide everything that we need to start the day right! Our bodies require proper nutrition in order to get through the day, and to keep our blood sugar regulated. When we eat empty calories, it causes our blood sugar to spike and we get an instant rush from the sugar, especially when we load pancakes up with cheap maple syrup (which usually contains over 70 grams of sugar per serving!!). About an hour or so after eating all of that sugar, we become exhausted and hungry again, because our body now blasted through all of that sugar and was never given any REAL nutrition to begin with, and we virtually have to start over.
Oatmeal: Oats are a great grain because they are an excellent source of nutrition, as they contain essential enzymes, iron, dietary fiber, vitamin E, and B-complex vitamins. Because the body absorbs grains slowly, it provides sustained and high-quality energy. The slow absorption also helps to stabilize your blood sugar. When cooking with oats, always try to use steel cut oats or quick cook oats. The slower the cook, the better, but when in a pinch, PLAIN quick cook is always better than the microwave type.
Hemp seed: One of the amazing attributes of hemp seed is that there is no other food substance that contains such high amounts of essential fatty acids. Hemp seed actually has a perfect balance of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids in a 3:1 ratio. Hemp is also an excellent source of protein, and is easily digestible. Studies in the recent past have shown that consuming hemp seeds whether raw or in oil form, has the capacity to aid in the healing process of diseases related to immune deficiency. Yes, hemp seed does come from Cannabis, however, the amount of THC found in commercial hemp seed is less than 1%, so there is no worry about “getting high”. Enjoy your hemp seed without worry people! The brand I love is from Nutiva or Manitoba Harvest.
Coconut: We all know the MANY benefits of coconut oil, but the coconut that I use in the recipe is coconut manna, or also called coconut butter. Coconut butter contains similar nutritional characteristics to coconut oil, but since it is comprised of pureed, raw coconut meat—not only the oil—it is not made exclusively of fat. One tablespoon of coconut butter provides 2 grams of fiber as well as small amounts of potassium, magnesium, and iron.
Anyway, this is not a advertisement for the nutribullet, so lets move on.
1 frozen organic peach
1 handful frozen organic spinach
less than 1/3 cup organic flaxseed
10 ounces of almond milk
1 scoop of vanilla protein shake (ask me what my favorite one is!)
Organic Dark Maple Syrup to taste (just a little)
Blend in your blender or your nutribullet and Enjoy!!!!!
You can add any of your favorite essential oils to that, and it would be delicious!! I’ve added a drop or 2 of Wild Orange to it, Lemon and Lime, sometimes Cinnamon! Be creative! When you’re sick, it’s great to add a protective blend essential oil to boost your immune system! It’s a great way to get your essential oils internally and get your fruits and vegetables in at the same time as well. Add 2 scoops of protein shake, and then you can drink half in the morning, and half in the afternoon! Great for people who are on the go, and want to prepare their shakes ahead of time!
Making you own homemade almond milk is really easy. I never realized it until we started doing it ourselves. I was spending tons of money at the supermarket every week on organic almond milk, and then we got a Nutribullet 14-Piece Nutrition Extractor 600 Watt Blender Juicer NBR-1401 Nutri Bullet! The Nutri Bullet has completely changed our lives in so many ways, I can go on and on about the thing, but today is all about almond milk!
First, why almond milk?
IT’S A GREAT ALTERNATIVE FOR THOSE WHO CAN’T DRINK MILK OR CHOSE NOT TO: While almond milk does not contain as much calcium or protein for it to be a COMPLETE substitute, it does contain enough to fill you! So it’s great for smoothies, for your cereal, your coffee, your cookies and milk, heck, just about anything really!
IT HELPS WITH WEIGHT MANAGEMENT: 1 cup has about 60 calories as opposed to about 140 calories in whole cow’s milk. Again, winner in my book!
IT’S GREAT FOR YOUR TICKER! (YOUR HEART): There is no cholesterol or saturated fat in almond milk. It’s also low in sodium and high in healthy fats, the omega fatty acids that are so good for us. Those are the things that help to prevent high blood pressure and high cholesterol.
IT MAKES YOUR SKIN GLOW: Almond milk contains Vitamin E, about 50% of the recommended daily amount. Vitamin E contains antioxidant properties essential to your skin’s health, such as protecting it against sun damage.
IT’S GREAT FOR DIGESTION: With 1 gram of fiber per serving, it will keep things moving in the right direction!
IT KEEPS YOUR MUSCLES STRONG AND HELPS TO HEAL THEM: Almond milk contains plenty of B vitamins such as iron and riboflavin, both important for muscle growth and healing.
HOMEMADE ALMOND MILK
1 cup of raw almonds (organic if possible)
3 cups of filtered water
A splash of vanilla extract (if you prefer)
Blend to desired consistency, or, if you have a Nutri Bullet, run for about 3 cycles (depending on the consistency you like your almond milk to be) and your done!
* Don’t over mix or you will end up with the milk being too frothy! *
Here is what our homemade almond milk looks like:
Homemade almond milk tastes so much better, and probably has more fiber than store bought almond milk, because it’s not strained!
Who gets 8 hours of sleep a night? I’d like to shake your hand if you do. And I would like to know all of your secrets, especially if you have young kids. By the time I actually lay down in bed, there is alot of tossing and turning, and then frequent waking, and staring at the clock. Anyone else? By the time morning comes, I feel like I never slept, and then in order to feel like I have energy, I have to depend on coffee or energy drinks just to get to 9 am. The day just drags on, and I feel exhausted, I can’t wait to crawl in to bed, expecting to fall asleep fast, but NOPE! So what gives??? How do we unwind and get our bodies into the right frame of mind for sleep? How do we shut down and drift off?
How do we go from this:
Stick to a sleep schedule! Pick a bed time and stick to it. Also, try to wake up at the same time every day. Having a consistent wake and sleep pattern trains your body to fall asleep and stay asleep longer.
Exercise: But avoid doing it too close to bedtime. Working out improves the length and quality of your sleep! It signals your brain to release sleep-inducing melatonin, so then you’ll get drowsy. But experts say to avoid doing it at least 4 hours from bedtime. I guess I should start exercising!
Cut all caffeine out after 2 pm! Yes people. This includes ALL caffeine. Chocolate, coffee, tea, soda…………… Caffeine is a stimulant that stays in your system for about 8 hours, so if you have a cappuccino after dinner, come bedtime, it’ll either prevent your brain from entering deep sleep or stop you from falling asleep altogether.
Start writing in a journal. Many people, myself included, complain that they can’t shut their mind down at night. So, writing down your worries at night should help with that.
Take time to wind down. I have a hard time with this. Taken from Prevention Magazine:
“Sleep is not an on-off switch,” says Dr. Breus. “It’s more like slowly easing your foot off the gas.” Give your body time to transition from your active day to bedtime drowsiness by setting a timer for an hour before bed and divvying up the time as follows: First 20 minutes: Prep for tomorrow (pack your bag, set out your clothes). Next 20: Take care of personal hygiene (brush your teeth, moisturize your face). Last 20: Relax in bed, reading with a small, low-wattage book light or practicing deep breathing.
Use your essential oils to help you sleep and wind down! I run my diffuser every single night! And I also apply my essential oils topically, to both my temples, and my feet! i use a variety of oils depending on what I feel that I need. I really depend on Lavender most nights. And Vetiver. That seems to be my go-to oil lately. My favorite blend to diffuse is Grounding Blend, Vetiver and Lavender. Something about that combination just brings me to that place where I can close my eyes and fall asleep. It’s just so calming and relaxing.
TURN OFF YOUR TV!!! I added this one because I am a big believer in essential oils, yes! However, we depend WAY TOO MUCH on TV to fall asleep!!!!!! It has NO PURPOSE in our bedroom!! And this is coming from someone WHO HAS ONE IN HERS! We should not be sleeping with one on! For those of you who do, TURN IT OFF.
Snack on cheese and crackers before bed. The ideal nighttime nosh combines carbohydrates and either calcium or a protein that contains the amino acid tryptophan—studies show that both of these combos boost serotonin, a naturally occurring brain chemical that helps you feel calm. Enjoy your snack about an hour before bedtime so that the amino acids have time to reach your brain.
Use a white noise machine, or listen to classical music. Sound machines designed to help you sleep produce a low-level soothing noise. These can help you tune out barking dogs, the TV downstairs, or any other disturbances so you can fall asleep and stay asleep. Liv sleeps with a sound machine, and Luca sleeps to classical music, and both of them sleep the best. And I sleep really well now because Luca’s monitor is on, and I hear his music in my room, and it is just so soothing, so between the essential oils and the music, it’s just so nice
No alcohol 2 hours before bedtime! You might think it helps you sleep, but it actually disrupts your sleep pattern!
Maybe if I follow my own advice, I’ll sleep like a baby tonight! I certainly could use a good nights sleep! Sweet dreams!
TO FIND OUT WHICH ESSENTIAL OILS I LOVE: Contact me @ firstname.lastname@example.org for more information or for samples!! I can send you whatever you heart desires, as long as it’s essential oils!
We eat WAY too much sugar in this country. Over the last 200 years the average American has gone from eating 1-2lbs of sugar per year to consuming around 150lbs. In October of 2011, the health department launched a campaign and showed that drinking just one 20 ounce soda a day equals 50 pounds of sugar in a year! And most people don’t stop at one soda a day! What about the sugar that we DON’T know about? You know, the HIDDEN sugars? Though you may be very conscious of your daily sugar intake, there are several foods on the market that you may not be aware are so high in sugar content. Everybody knows that sweet goods such as cake and candy are to be consumed in moderation, but people may not be aware of that fact that foods such as tomato sauce, tonic water, bread and even fat free dressing are all guilty of being ‘hidden sugar’ products. It is really worth doing your homework on the weekly shop to make sure you are purchasing the very best and healthiest options for you or your family, it really can make a difference. Reading ingredient labels carefully is one of the most important things you can do for your health.
When we eat excess sugar, our pancreas and adrenal glands produce extra insulin and cortisol to handle the influx of sugar and empty calories. Over time, and especially if combined with other factors like a stressful lifestyle, the stress on these organs begins to tell. A long-term high-sugar diet can contribute to lower levels of key hormones and neurotransmitters like cortisol, aldosterone, and even the sex hormones. This leads to Adrenal Fatigue – tiredness, low energy levels, and a general lack of vitality and enthusiasm.
With the holidays coming up, I think it’s safe to say that NO ONE is going to give up holiday baking or eating (including myself) because lets be real. You need to live a little, and enjoy this time! I don’t drink soda, and I don’t eat or drink excessive amounts of sugar. However, if you stick a cookie or piece of cake in front of my face, YOU BETTER BELIEVE that I am going to eat it! So, I think we should all make a promise to ourselves that after the holidays are over, that we do what we need to do to get healthy for us! To decrease the amount of sugar and toxic substances that we put into our bodies. That we take better care of ourselves. So, lets make a diet plan, so that we can wipe out adrenal fatigue from the diet standpoint. So that we can go from this:
Where do we begin in 2015? Well, one thing I learned from seeing my nutritionist is this: WHEN you eat is almost as important as WHAT you eat. By eating the right combination of natural, high quality food at frequent, regular intervals, you can help avoid low blood sugar and make a difference in your adrenal health and energy levels.
WHEN TO EAT:
Many people wait too long to eat after waking up in the morning, or, skip breakfast all together! This is a BIG no no!! If you have adrenal fatigue, it is very important that you eat before 10:00 AM. This is important to help replenish the waning stored blood sugar supply after the previous nights energy needs. Makes sense, right?
An early lunch, right before noon, is better than a late lunch because your body quickly uses up the morning nourishment and is ready for more. Between 11 and 11:30 AM is usually the best time for lunch. You should also eat a nutritious snack between 2 and 3 PM to sustain yourself for the cortisol dip that typically occurs between 3 and 4 PM. Your evening meal should be eaten between 5 and 6 PM.
A few bites of a high quality snack, like nuts, or celery and hummus, before bed can help get through sleep disturbances.
WHAT TO EAT AND DRINK:
A fat, protein and complex carbohydrates (like whole grains) at every meal and snack. This combination helps provide a steady stream of energy throughout the day. It is important to remember that foods that are converted too quickly into energy (like sugary snacks or highly processed foods) will quickly let you down. Protein should be good quality from meat, fish, eggs, dairy, or plant sources. Try to avoid processed sources like packages lunch meats or processed cheeses. And they say salt in moderation is good for people with adrenal fatigue as well, unless you suffer from High blood pressure. When choosing veggies, always choose brightly colored ones, and be creative. Try new things, keep it interesting so that you don’t get bored. They are good for you, experiment. Share ideas and tips in the comment section of my blog, or on my facebook page. i always love new recipes, and I’m sure everyone else does too!
I found this recipe for Adrenal Recovery soup online: Try it!!!
Adrenal Recovery Soup The following vegetable soup recipe has proved helpful in adrenal support. It is rich in minerals and alkalinizing to help balance the acidity that usually occurs in people experiencing adrenal fatigue and stress. It has a calming, settling effect. This soup, called “Taz,” comes from Dolores S. Downey’s “Balancing Body Chemistry with Nutrition” seminars.
16 oz. green beans
1 cup chopped celery
1 zucchini, sliced
1 medium onion, chopped
1 cup tomato juice
1 cup spring water
2 tbsp. raw honey
1 tsp. paprika
1 cup chicken broth
Combine ingredients and simmer for one hour until vegetables are tender. Pepper to taste.
They say that people with adrenal fatigue should go light on fruit, I guess because of the extra sugar in fruit, even though it’s natural. Fruits contain a significant amount of fructose and potassium, which is a detrimental combination for those with exhausted adrenals. However, it is preferable that any fruit that you do eat is organically grown. Below is a short list of fruits people with adrenal fatigue tend to do well with, and ones they should avoid.
Fruits to Avoid
grapes (only a few)
Summary of What to Eat
Here are 9 easy rules to follow:
Eat a wide variety of whole, natural foods
Combine a healthy fat, protein and carbohydrate source with every meal
Eat lots of vegetables, especially the brightly colored ones
Salt your food to a pleasant taste
Eat mainly whole grains as your source of carbohydrate
Combine grains with legumes (beans), or legumes with seeds or nuts to form a complete protein
Avoid fruit in the morning
Mix 1-2 tablespoons of fresh essential oils (cold pressed olive, grape seed, safflower, flax, etc.) into grains, vegetables and meats daily
Eat high quality food; it becomes you.
By following these simple guidelines, your food intake can help support your adrenals and prevent low blood sugar.
Do you know what GMO’s are? A genetically modified organism (GMO) is a bacteria, yeast, insect, plant, fish, or mammal whose genetic material has been altered using genetic engineering techniques. GMOs are the source of genetically modified foods and are also widely used in scientific research and to produce goods other than food. GMOs are used in biological and medical research, production of pharmaceutical drugs, experimental medicine (e.g. gene therapy), and agriculture (e.g. golden rice, resistance to herbicides).
In agriculture, currently marketed genetically engineered crops have traits such as resistance to pests, resistance to herbicides, increased nutritional value, or production of valuable goods such as drugs (pharming). Products under development include crops that are able to thrive in environmental conditions outside the species’ native range or in changed conditions in their range (e.g. drought or salt resistance). Products that existed and have been withdrawn include those with extended product shelf life, such as the Flavr-savr tomato.
Since the first commercial cultivation of genetically modified plants in 1996, they have been modified to be tolerant to the herbicides glufosinate and glyphosate, to be resistant to virus damage (as in Ringspot virus-resistant GM papaya grown in Hawaii), and to produce the Bt toxin, an insecticide that is documented as non-toxic to mammals. Plants, including algae, jatropha, maize, and poplars, have been genetically modified for use in producing fuel, known as biofuel.
Second- and third-generation GM crops are on the market and under development with improved nutrition profiles and increased yields or ability to thrive in difficult environments. GM oilseed crops on the market today offer improved oil profiles for processing or healthier edible oils. Other examples include:
A genetically modified cassava with lower cyanogen glucosides and enhanced with protein and other nutrients;
Do you know what all of this means?? Do you know what Round Up Weed Killer is? You know, that really powerful weed killer that people use to do just that, kill weeds? IT’S IN EVERYTHING WE EAT! It’s in the seeds that the farmers use to plants the crops that are on the shelves in the supermarkets. It’s in the dinner you are serving to your kids. It’s in that processed food you are making because you are too busy to cook. It’s at the drive thru. It’s everywhere. How could that even be good for us?????? Guess what? It’s not!
A good friend of mine posted this video awhile back, and resent it to me on friday after I posted my blog about the food industry and Cliff Walsh’s book (which everyone should read!), and I wanted to share it with everyone because her story is just like all of ours. I think it’s important to hear, and think about. Another great documentary about GMO’s is titled: GMO OMG. It’s currently available on Netflix. Watch it. We need to start making changes. We need to head back to our roots. We need to get back to the natural way of life. Regain our health, ourselves.
This morning, as I drink my coffee, I am on facebook chatting with a good friend (who’s celebrating her birthday today!! Happy birthday mama!!!). We are talking about how her daughter is suffering from a skin condition, and is not getting any better. She has seen her doctor, a dermatologist, an allergist, has been on steroids, creams, the list goes on and on I am sure. And guess what? Right now nothing is working. The poor kid is so upset. Which breaks my heart. It would break any mothers heart. My friends child is such a beautiful child, but she thinks she’s ugly because of this skin condition. As a mother, when you can’t help your child, and the medical community isn’t helping your child, you feel like crap, plain and simple. More than crap. There are no words to describe how you feel. As I ask her question after question, I start to wonder what she is eating, and whether or not she is eating organically. Anyone who knows me well knows that I have been someone who has favored organic eating for quite some time. I don’t want unknown foreign substances in my body, or in the bodies of my husband, children, or loved ones. You don’t understand just how many additives, chemicals, pesticides, hormones, antibiotics, GMO’s are in our food. When we were young, we didn’t see THIS level of obesity, autism, food allergies, skin conditions, autoimmune disorders, cancers, diabetes, did we???? It’s scary, this world that we live in. It’s scary to think that certain foods that are sold in other countries by companies that sell here as well (like Kraft) are not allowed to sell those products with some of the additives that they sell them here with. That speaks volumes doesn’t it? So, what’s in our food, and what do we do about it? How do we fix this, and how do we help ourselves to become healthier? A few months ago, I read an amazing book about the food industry, and honestly it was an eye opener about what was REALLY going on. I thought I knew it all, but I certainly did not. I think this book is an important read for EVERYONE, but especially anyone who is suffering from any type of illness or medical condition:
This book is available in paperback, as well as kindle on amazon: http://www.amazon.com/They-Put-That-Food-Navigating/dp/1502715406/ref=tmm_pap_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1413641235&sr=8-1
Trust me when I tell you that you will be just as amazed as I was after you read this. We need to do something people. We need to be healthier. We can’t depend on the medical community to do it for us. We have to do it for ourselves. Taking control, and reinventing our healthcare is the first step!!
I am in love with some of these ideas from a fellow blogger! I love how easy she makes it for herself, it’s genius!! And the recipes seem so delicious!! If I didn’t have a full schedule today, I would start making some of this stuff ASAP! So great, I had to share!
5 days ago, I started my water Kefir! The first step was activating the kefir grains, which start out looking like little amber crystals. The directions said to put the grains into a glass jar with 4 cups of sugar water. So, that’s what I did. Today was the day that I had to drain the water and start the water kefir that we will be drinking. Below is a picture of the jar I started with and photographed the other day, and next to it is the fresh jar of sugar water that the Kefir will go in to for the next 24 to 48 hours.
When I strained the kefir grains out of the first jar, they had turned into these white puffy grains that are now alive and active! And they multiplied too!
So now we wait until tomorrow night to see what it looks like! After tomorrow night, I will start a second fermentation to flavor it and make it fizzy!! I am turning into a full blown dork. Don’t be jealous!! Stay tuned!!
Today I have taken on the task of making water kefir!
What is water kefir, and why is it good for you? Many people are familiar with milk kefir grains, but what about water kefir grains? Where did that culture originate, and how does it differ from milk kefir? Although both products are made from “grains,” these are not actual grains like wheat or rye, but rather clusters of bacteria and yeast living in a symbiotic relationship and held together by a polysaccharide (dextran) produced by Lactobacillus higarii.1 These clusters of bacteria, yeast, and polysaccharide look like little crystals, or “grains” of jelly. The bacteria and yeasts in the grains utilize sugar to produce lactic acid, ethanol (a small amount), and carbon dioxide.2
Water kefir grains are known by a variety of names, but most commonly are called tibicos, Japanese water crystals, and California bees. They may also be referred to as Australian Bees, African Bees, Ginger Bees, Ginger Beer Plant, Sea Rice, or Aqua Gems, to name a few. Different countries call them by different names. In Germany they may be called Piltz; in Italy, Kefir di Frutta; and in France, Graines Vivantes. In Mexico, tibicos (or tibi) is used to make a fermented beverage called Tepache, made from pineapple, brown sugar, and cinnamon.
Because of the highly active nature of the bacteria and yeasts, there are many variations of the exact culture that produces the fizzy water kefir drink.
It is not completely clear where or when water kefir grains originated, but speculation points toward Mexico as the most likely place of origin. According to some research, the tibicos culture forms on the pads of the Opuntia cactus as hard granules that can be reconstituted in a sugar-water solution as propagating tibicos. There is documentation from the late 1800s of water kefir grains being used in fermented drink made from the sweetened juice of the prickly pear cactus in Mexico.
There are, however, stories that place their origin, or at least their use, in Tibet, the Caucasus Mountains, and the southern peninsula of the Ukraine. Pinpointing a place of origin is made even more difficult because water kefir cultures can be found throughout the world and no two cultures are exactly the same. Lack of recorded history also makes it difficult to place an origin date, but it seems likely these grains have been used for many centuries.
Regardless of what name is given to water kefir grains, or the exact makeup of the culture, the technique for using them is basically the same throughout the world.
If you cannot tolerate dairy, or if you are just looking for an alternative to commercial sodas, water kefir beverages can be a fun, easy, and tasty way to quench your thirst while adding more probiotics to your diet.
Making water kefir is a process, but it is worth it, because once you get it going, you can use the grains over and over again. It’s a great experiment that you can do with your kids, and teach them about health and wellness in a fun way! You can flavor the drinks with what ever you like. It ends up being a fizzy, delicious drink that has so many health benefits for the entire family. It’s a great alternative to soda. Soda is probably one of the worst things we can put into our bodies, because it is all chemicals, and does nothing but make us sicker and sicker.
Join the Kefir madness people! You can order your water kefir starter kit here . It’s a great project to start with the kids, and doing a second fermentation and learning how to make kefir soda is so much fun, and so delicious and healthy for you too!