Greens, Greens, The More You Eat……….

Greens, Greens, The More You Eat……the better You Feel so eat your greens at every meal!!!there There is no better time than summertime to do this!
With all the fresh, different foods in season it is so easy to eat healthier and feel better. Yes the sunshine, being outside, taking holidays and more exercise all help that is for sure, but the difference in food does make a big difference in how one feels.

Since it’s mid summer and I know from going to the local markets that there are so many greens, herbs, veggies and fruit available right now, how about trying some different things.
First venture out and try some new veggies and greens that maybe you haven’t had in awhile or have never tried.
Or, try mixing new ones together instead of the same old same old. Now is the perfect time to experiment and keep it easy.
Here are a few suggestions for different types of salads:

Cucumber salad with salsa…..put some pieces of leaf lettuce on a plate with sliced up cucumbers on top and add fresh salsa on top of the cucumbers…….enjoy

Mixed greens with fennel and a fresh Raspberry Vinaigrette dressing

Take the salad you usually make and add in a bunch of fresh different herbs – basil, parsley, cilantro, mint or whatever else you can think of!!

Diced up tomates, cucumbers and avocados on head lettuce, choose an oil & vinegar or just eat plain, you could also throw in some sunflower seeds.

Arugula, fennel and strawberries make an interesting combination with lots of ground pepper (believe it or not it brings out the flavor of strawberries even more but make sure it’s freshly ground)

Watermelon & Olive Tapenade Salad – greens, cut up watermelon, mixed olive tapenade, lemon juice and a nice vinaigrette

Spinach, mushrooms, thinly sliced red onion with either chopped up apple or strawberries with a little grated cheese (if you want a brie is nice) and a oil & balsamic vinegar

Hey, keep it going, you’re only limited by your imagination…….eat healthy and enjoy it!!!

To Your Health
Jodi

Salsa

There is nothing better than fresh salsa, I think anyways and I will admit I still love eating fresh salsa and gacumole with real natcho chips as I haven’t been able to find a good recipe for the chips as of yet!!

Here is a basic recipe for fresh Salsa but feel free to change it up for your taste

1 cup diced tomatoes ( you can put the tomatoes in a blende and puree them briefly if you prefer a less choppy salsa or time is an issue)

1 – 2 cloves garlic

sea salt

juice of 1  lime

1 onion finely chopped

bunch of parsley finely chopped

bunch of cilantro finely chopped

I use the word bunch as it all depends on your taste, I like alot of both so I add more in.

You can get creative from her and add in lemon juice if you like or chopped red or green peppers, or corm or black beans or whtever tickles your fancy!!

Will keep for several days in the fridge.

Raspberry Vinaigrette

Raspberry Vinaigrette Dressing

1/2 cup raspberries

3 tablespoons white wine vinegar ( leon juice can also be used)

1 – 2 tbsp raw honey

sea salt

3 -4 tbsp cold press olive oil

puree together briefly in a blender and pass through a sieve if you don’t want seeds add in olive oil

Add to your favorite salad

The Story of Cosmetics

I don’t know about you, but I care about what I put in my body for the most part and I also care about what I put on it. Over the years I have tried to find healthy products but learned along the way that many store brands weren’t being totally honest or I would grab something that said it was healthy only to get home and really read the ingredient list.
Yes I read the list, I don’t always know what everything is, but I try and look it up. I like to keep things simple and easy and when there are alot of chemicals in things, it just doesn’t work for me. I don’t care if my lipstick will stay on for 8 hours, or my face will look 10 years younger, what is it doing to for the long run and will it give me cancer???

The Story of Cosmetics is a good short little video on cosmetics and other toxic products. Always be aware of what you are using, by not buying these products you are helping yourself, your health and the environment and hopefully eventally more people will change too.
Find a product or company that uses only safe ingredients. For me, that is why I choose Miessence. Whether or not you choose them (they have sample packs of alot of their products to try out and you can read all the ingredients and know what most of them are!!), find one that works for you.
To Your Health
Jodi

Summertime

I love summertime as I love being outside. No socks, either barefeet or flips flops as often as possible. The sun makes one feel so much better, I guess it’s all the rain and grey we get through the rest of the year here in BC that I love summer even more now!!

We were enjoying backyard or beach fires, but now there is a ban on, so that is now happening, but walks on the beach in the evenings and watching the sunset is beyond words. We have also been so lucky is seeing the Eaglets take flight, a grey whale in close, a seal pup coming up on shore waiting for it’s mom, then the next day finding a seal pup that had washed up on shore and not sounding too good. Ken and I got it to the Gibson’s Wildlife Centre which was hoping it could help before turning it over to the Vancouver Aquarium. Fingers crossed that it survives. All of this in one week, oh yeah I forget to mention that our dog Spirit treed a couple of bears in our backyard…….summertime is pretty interesting around here!!!
Also, outdoors Markets, I love them!!! All the artists and their beautiful works and the plentiful, fresh, beautiful fruits, vegetables and herbs. There is so much to choose from and it is so easy to eat healthy in the summer.
If you haven’t been out to your local farmer’s market I highly recommend it. Not only are you able to eat healthier, but have usually better selections but also support your local farmers and that is so important.
I love all the fresh produce, but I find I get inspired too from all the neat things that I see.
Go and enjoy.
Here’s to your health.
Jodi

Banana 'Not so Green' Smoothie

Banana Smoothie

Most of the smoothies I make I use water but sometimes a creamier texture one is really good.  This is a good one for kids as you can sneak in the greens and they don’t even know it!!!  So it doesn’t look green, I use Cacao so it has a good chocolate taste!!

This is just for one serving, so increase the amounts if need be.

1-2 bananas ( I like to freeze ripe bananas and add one of them, it makes the smoothie nicer I find, but you don’t have to, I know some would disagree with freezing but a bit of both is good)

1 cup almond mylk (now you can make your own or buy it whatever works for you, Almond milk is my favorite for this recipe then Hemp milk but use what you like, I always suggest to stay away from Soy when possible).

Big handful of Spinach

1 Tbsp Coconut Oil

1-2 Tbsp Cacao Powder

I like to throw  Cacao nibs into this one but you don’t have to, blend up and enjoy!!!

Why Coconut Oil and Cacao Nibs??

Coconut Oil – very healthy fat,  they say one of the healthiest on the planet, great nutrition for the hair and skin,  helps with weight loss, a stable oil, our bodies can metalbolize it well

Raw Cacao – powder – this is not commercially processed so it has alot of antioxidants and flavonoids in it.

All chocolate is made from the cacao (cocoa) bean, and cacao beans in their natural, unprocessed, unadulterated state are rich in nutrients and beneficial to health.

Raw Chocolate Cheesecake

Raw Chocolate Cheesecake

You wouldn’t know it and oh my, is it good!!!  I started with a couple of recipes and from there came up with this one.

1 cup nuts ( I used almonds and did not soak them)

Crust

6 dates (pitts removed)

1/8 tsp sea salt

Put all ingredients in a food processor and mix up to crumbly but sticks together, you may need to add another date or two.  You can always substitue raisins as well.

Once that is done, put in a spryne foam pan or a glass pyrex dish, you can make this dish either like a regular cheesecake and cut into pie shape pieces or put into oblong dish and cut into squares.

Filling

3 cups cashews soaked minimum 30 mins

1/3 cup honey ( some vegans won’t use this, agave can be substituted, but there have been articles lately on agave, you can also use Maple Syrup)

6 dates (pitts removed)

1/3 cup lemon juice

11/4 cup water

1 cup coconut oil

1/2 cup cocoa powder

I also threw in some raw cocoa in the one I made but that is optional.

Drain the cashews and add in with the rest of the ingredients, put into blender  and blend up until smooth.  A  processor just doesn’t work as well here, I’ve tried it.  This is a recipe that is hard on a regular blender, unless it is more of a square base one or a Vitamix is best, as it has the horse power and makes the recipe more fluffy.  Don’t despair if you don’t have one, I used a square based blender several times and it still worked well.

Put in freezer for about an hour or in the fridge and keep it there.

Top with your favorite fruit and enjoy!!!

Jodi

Reflecting

I got up this morning in a funk, ever have one of those days??

So I headed down to the beach with my dog Spirit and sat and reflected on some things going on in my life.  Now, I don’t know if any of you believe in the spirit world or what happens after a loved one physically leaves this world, but my mom has a way of letting me know she is there for me.  She passed away a couple of years ago, at a young age to cancer.  She usually leaves good signs that she is there, like this am, when I found a piece of beach in the sun, several minutes later I looked up to a tree that sometimes has an Eagle in it, and this morning it had four.  I have never seen that before.  Maybe it wasn’t her giving me a sign, but then again maybe it was!!

One of the things I was reflecting on was my blog, as you noticed I just changed the title over, as I have this thing with food and eating healthy, always have.  Now, I really try not to be too anal, but my husband might dispute that one!!!

One of the things I have realized is that I have always had a thing with food, even when I was younger.  It wasn’t always good or healthy.  As a teenager, you go through a stage of eating lots of junk food, well, most of us anyways, I did, but then I took it beyond that.  I went through a stage of not eating, anything, otherwise known as starving myself or anorexia.  It was short lived, only about a year or so, I believe that my lowest weight was about 87 lbs, now I’m only 5ft 2, but that was still way too low.  My mom knew the signs as she had struggled with that as well, makes me wonder now if that was subconscious learned behavior??

From there, through the help of some close friends, I learned that I could eat, anything and all that I wanted without getting fat!!  I was in, little did I know at the time what path in would take me down and how it could affect my health, but I didn’t care as long as the weight didn’t come on.  You’re probably wondering the name of this diet aren’t you?? It’s called Bulimia and this is the first time I have gone totally open about it.  People know, I don’t hide it, but I’ve never put it out there and I think I should.

I share that info as I know that food, emotional eating, guilt, diet, advertising and so on are so much a part of this cultural these days.  Women are multi tasking more than ever betweens children, jobs, or being self employed, wanting to feel and look good or healthy, having the time and energy for it all.  Sometimes we meet our feelings of overwhelment, exhaustion, emptiness, feeling unappreciated or over extended or putting our needs last by filling our selves up w ith food.

The food we usually choose in those situations is comfort foods or snack foods that we just keep snacking on.  Now, I share this with no judgement as I went down that path for many, many years.  I struggled with Bulimia throughout my late teens and well into my twenties.  It was not fun alot of the time.  It mostly affected me between January and May, hmmm, do you think I could have had SAD at the same time!!??

I sometimes cycled between starving myself and binging, the mind is a powerful thing.  I share this part of me, as I wanted to be real with any of my readers, letting you know that I wasn’t always a health nut, well I was in between, but I was a fake, insecure, sneaking food junkie I guess you could say.  In between I worked out, taught Aerobics (ok yes I am dating myself there), ate fairly healthy when I was eating but oh sooooo confused and insecure inside.

I was part of several studies on women with eating disorders, so I did try and get outside help a few times as I got older as I recognized the insanity of it all.  What I have learned through it all, the most important thing, that I do matter. I am important and so are my feelings, even if it’s just to me.  That is why I choose to be nice to myself now (that and my friends still telling me I am way too hard on myself, hmmm more sub conscious programming, but I have been working on it!!!)  I am learning to trust my gut feelings on things and not question it, it’s being in the flow and being true to me.  That is what has lead me down the road of eating more raw and healthy, plus I need to make up for lost time of those years of abusing my body.  I feel the difference when I eat raw, or just way healthier and when I don’t, my body tells me that also.  I like to drink a glass or two of wine sometimes, and my body is letting me know that it just doesn’t want it anymore.  Alot of food too, which sometimes can be frustrating as it’s not that unhealthy yet it’s what my body doesn’t want right now, so I am listening.

I share this with you as I want to be honest.  I love food, I get inspired by it, I love making healthy things and when I watch Youtube videos read books of people eating healthy and feeling great, and curing diseases I get excited. As silly as that may sound and I can say I am proud now, that I traded in my Shape magazine and an unhealthy way of viewing my body and eating for one that is way healthier.  Yes, I have finally accepted that I am 5’2″ , small boned, bigger thighs and boobless!!!  I just want to feel good and enjoy the day.

So, to anyone out there that is struggling with having a good relationship with food in general, I just want to say there is hope and it can be accomplished.  EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) or Tapping is an amazing tool, easy to use and just love and accept yourself where you are and as you are…….you deserve it!!!

And remember, it’s a journey, today does count!!!

Thanks for stopping by

JB

Getting Started in Raw Foods

What is Raw Foods?

– uncooked – it’s not heated above 118F / 42C

– it’s fresh and unprocessed

– organic as much as possible

Why not cooked foods?

Cooked foods actually destroys all the vitamins, nutrients, minerals, oxygen rich & enzymes which is the life force or ‘spark of life’. It becomes dead food, then we need to supplement with usually factory processed vitamins etc and we are then just eating for the sake of eating and not living.  We are all born with enzymes, when we eat cooked foods we diminsh our supply of them as it takes enzymes to help digest our food, so with cooked foods, our bodies are using up our stores of enzymes, that is why we feel sluggish and tired after eating a cooked meal, it takes our energy.  When we eat raw foods, we feel good as the food comes with enzymes and can be digested much easier.

Raw foods are more alkalining which is highly beneficial for our bodies.  Acidic foods create an acidic environment which is much better for creating disease.

Benefits of eating Raw

-weightloss

– more energy

– healthy skin

– the ‘glow’

– detoxes

– need less sleep

– no arthritis

– increased flexibility

– better digestion

– no more headaches

– no more candida

– improved immune system

– prevent & even reverse diabetes or cancer

– reduce risk of heart disease

– no more allergies

– lower cholesterol

– few if any colds or flu

– clarity of mind

– no more PMS

– improved sex life

Isn’t that a good start???

It’s also better for the planet – no pesiticides, herbicides or other chemicals, so we are helping to contribute to a better, safer planet.

There are differences in raw food diets as you will see when you are researching them, some will use some ingredients like Bragg’s or Tamari and some won’t. Some will use raw milk or cheese, some won’t, some are into very simple foods and recipes and some are into more elegant raw cusine, some are 60%, or 80% or 100% raw.  It’s finding out what works for you, and where you are starting at and your health – everyone is different.  There is so much variation and that can be confusing or overwhelming at first, remember to have some fun with it too, and don’t be hard on yourself when starting out, we all transition differently.

The important part I would like to say is that eating ‘raw’ or ‘live’ foods more in your ‘diet’ is always good no matter how much you decide to incorporate.  The more you can, obviously there better.

What’s your why??

When starting with raw foods or anything for that matter, be clear on your why.  Is it to be healthier, loss weight,  look better, whatever it is, when you are clear about your why, it will be easier to stick to it!!

Raw Foods

– fruits

– vegetables

– leafy greens (not really a veggie)

– herbs

– spices

– nuts

– seeds

– sea vegetables

– edible flowers

– spices

– herbs

– oils

– natural sweetners

Kitchen tools to have

All you really need to get yourself started, besides enthusiasm is some good knives, a good blender and a processor.  I have a knack for picking up processors in almost new condition, at yard sales for like $10.  I like to have two in my kitchen.

As you get into using raw foods more, then you will want to invest in a Vitamix, a really good, horse power blender,if that is out of your price range, I recommend a really good, more square base blender.

Dehydrator for making crackers etc, my favorite is an Excalibur.

Spiroli

Coffee bean grinder

You probably have most of those already in your kitchen.

Eating ‘raw’ or more ‘live’ foods or even just healthier does NOT have to be boring!!!

Here is to your health!!

Jodi


Raw 'Meatless' Wraps

Another short video on a quick, easy, healthy and Raw snack or even dinner!!

Enjoy and please feel free to share with friends or leave any comments!!

To Your Health

Jodi

Raw 'Meatless' Meat

I talk about this recipe in the video to follow.  The other night everyonein my house wanted fajita’s, which I do love, but since committing to as much raw or live foods as possible I wanted to get even more creative and this is what I came up with.

I am one that gets ideas from cook books (or I should say “un” cook books!!!) and then play with it.  I love doing that.  Now some people may like to follow recipes to a ‘t’, just remember you can always adjust things to your taste or substitute some ingredients for others for different flavors…….have fun, be healthy and remember, it’s your palate and as you eat fresher, more alive foods, your taste will change.

Raw ‘Meatless’ Taco Meat

In a processor combine

1 cup sunflower seeds (the best for making a meat like texture or more course)

14 – 1/2 cup walnuts

Pulverize till fairly course

Add

squeeze of 1/2 lemon

celtic sea salt to taste

1 clove garlic

1 tsp cumin (optional)

bunch parlsey (or cilantro, basil or other herb)

You can also add any flavorings you like as well, like chili peppers, cayene pepper,curry etc

Mix up well

You can use this to substitute in tacos (whether it’s a corn shell or cabbage leave or a wrap), put in celery, on crackers etc

Watch the video that follows for a quick snack or dinner idea.

Enjoy and please feel free to share with a friend!!

To Your Health

Jodi