The 52 New Foods Challenge – Mandarins

The 52 New Foods Challenge Food of the Week: Satsuma Mandarin Oranges

After doing The 21-Day Sugar Detox, this was one of my first fruits. I really enjoy eating a couple Mandarins for a snack. Like some of the other foods in the book, mandarins are not a new food for most of us, but Jennifer Tyler Lee has a recipe for mandarin orange and fennel salad which sounds pretty yummy.

Food Facts

IMG_0480
Mandarins, Kumquats, and Lemons
  • Good source of vitamins A, C, B6, thiamine, calcium, folate, potassium, and magnesium
  • Good source of fiber
  • Contains antioxidant carotenoids: alpha-carotene, beta-carotene, beta-cryptoxanthin, lutein, and zeaxanthin, as well flavonoids: tangeretin and nobiletin
  • They are known for helping to control blood glucose, lowering blood cholesterol, and helping to protect against cancer, Parkinson’s disease, and cardiovascular disease.
  • Like oranges, mandarins become sweeter and less acidic as they mature.
  • They are often picked when green, shipped, and then artificially ripened with ethylene gas which causes them to ripen. This causes them to look orange but they are more acidic, less sweet, and have fewer bionutrients than tree ripened fruit.
  • Organic Mandarins (and oranges) have not been degreened. 
  • Many of the nutrients in Mandarins are concentrated in the inner peel and the white pulp.

From Eating on the Wild Side: The Missing Link to Optimum Health
by Jo Robinson, The 52 New Foods Challenge: A Family Cooking Adventure for Each Week of the Year, with 150 Recipes by Jennifer Tyler Lee, Encyclopedia of Healing Foods by Michael Murray, Joseph Pizzorno, and Lara Pizzorno, and Superfoods: The Healthiest Foods on the Planet by Tonia Reinhard

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The 52 New Foods Challenge – Avocado

The 52 New Foods Challenge Food of the Week: Avocado

I think we all love Avocado. Obviously there is guacamole- my favorite! But for a quick and easy option, I also like to have a half or whole avocado sprinkled with sea salt and lemon and maybe hot sauce. What I’ve been really digging lately is: guacamole deviled eggs! Jennifer Tyler Lee has a recipe for avocado chocolate pudding – I do want to try this too! I tried avocado ice cream and I wasn’t a big fan. What are you favorite ways to use avocado?

Food Facts:IMG_0163

  • Good source of vitamin E, folate, potassium, and magnesium
  • Very good source of soluble fiber
  • High in healthy monounsaturated fats
  • Haas avocados have 2-4 times more antioxidants than other varieties sold in stores
  • Unripe avocados will ripen quickly in a brown paper bag
  • They will also ripen on your countertops – but they stop ripening once in your fridge – so they can be kept in the fridge until ready to be eaten (usually for several days)
  • “One serving gives you more antioxidants than a serving of broccoli raab, grapes, red bell peppers, or red cabbage” (Robinson, 2013, p. 206)


From Eating on the Wild Side: The Missing Link to Optimum Health
by Jo Robinson, The 52 New Foods Challenge: A Family Cooking Adventure for Each Week of the Year, with 150 Recipes
by Jennifer Tyler Lee, and Superfoods: The Healthiest Foods on the Planet
by Tonia Reinhard

Breakfast Casserole [21DSD, Paleo, Primal, GF]

While visiting my Aunt Regina and Uncle John in Austin for our trip to South by Southwest in 2010, she made us a delicious breakfast casserole. Ever since then I’ve played with the recipe and made it my own.

First, I added the veggies to the original recipe. Next, I began omitting the potatoes when we went Paleo. I’ve made it with several different meat options; just bacon, bacon and sausage, just sausage, or some leftover ham during the holidays. My latest version has no cheese since I’m avoiding most dairy. No matter which version you make, it’s sure to be a crowd pleaser. This is my current go-to version.

This is the perfect recipe for Sunday brunch, Christmas breakfast (our tradition), or to make ahead for quick-and-easy breakfasts for the week. While on The 21-Day Sugar Detox, this has been a great option for my husband and I. Let me know what you think!

Recipe:

IMG_69561 dozen pasture-raised eggs

8 slices of bacon, cooked and chopped

1 can of diced green chilies

2 bell peppers, diced

1 yellow onion, diced

1 t sea salt

1/2 t ground pepper

1/2 t granulated garlic

1/2 t red pepper flakes

1 T grass-fed butter

1 t coconut oil

Optional:

1 C grated cheddar cheese

1 large russet potato, grated

1/2 lb ground pork sausage

1 C ham

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. Grease a 13″ x 9″ pan with coconut oil.
  3. Sauté the bell peppers and onions in a skillet with the butter.
  4. Crack the eggs into a bowl and scramble. Season with sea salt, pepper, red pepper flakes, and garlic.
  5. In the baking dish, layer the bell peppers, onions, chili peppers, bacon, and eggs.
  6. Optional: If using the optional items, layer the potatoes first and the cheese on top. Cook the pork sausage and include it in the egg mixture. If using the ham include it in the egg mixture. Feel free to include whatever meat you have on hand or you prefer.
  7. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until firm in the middle. Cool for 10 minutes and then serve. Enjoy!

 

Eggs are a good source of protein and healthy fat; often considered a “perfect food”. They are a good source of vitamins B12, B6, and D, riboflavin, choline, phosphorous, selenium, folic acid, pantothenic acid, iron, and omega-3s. It is important to choose pasture-raised, organic eggs because they are rich in the above nutrients, while factory-farmed eggs generally are not.

Green Bell Peppers are one of the most nutrient dense foods and are a great source of fiber. They are rich in vitamins C, K, B6, thiamin, folic acid, and also beta-carotene. They are great sources of phytonutrients. Green bell peppers help prevent against cataracts, prevent blood clots, which reduces risk of heart attacks and strokes.

Onions are a good source of vitamins C and B6, potassium, and manganese. They are also rich in antioxidants, particularly quercetin, kaempferol, and myricetin, which all play a role in cancer prevention. Onions also help to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and osteoporosis.

References:

Bauman, E. & Friedlander, J. (2014). Therapeutic Nutrition. Penngrove, CA: Bauman College Press.

Murray, M., Pizzorno, J., & Pizzorno, L. (2005). Encyclopedia of Healing Foods. New York, NY: Atria Books.

Health & Hugs <3,

Katie

 

 

In Season, in January

Yikes! It’s already January 14th! Better late than not at all. Here is the list of what’s in season [especially in Northern California] in January.

I’m still enjoying all the cruciferous veggies and the citrus fruits! What seasonal foods do you enjoy in January?

IMG_5952

 

 

Butternut Squash Soup [21DSD, Paleo, Vegetarian, Primal]

Butternut squash soup is something that I could eat nearly everyday during the winter months. Hearty, filling, healthy, and delicious. I found a recipe for it about 5 years ago, and since then, I’ve tweaked it to make it my own. I found the act of peeling the butternut squash simply ridiculous. It is insanely hard to peel a raw butternut squash. Then, while in Miami, a friend ordered some butternut squash at a restaurant and it arrived roasted with the skin on. MIND BLOWN. I decided then to stop peeling the squash for these three reasons. 1) It’s way too hard, 2) I’m going to puree the soup with an immersion blender anyways, and 3) the skin is where the nutrients are! So here is my favorite recipe for butternut squash soup. Enjoy!

Paleo Butternut Squash Soup

Recipe:

1 large butternut squash, seeded and chopped

6 ribs of celery, chopped

6 carrots, chopped

1 medium onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped

2 cups water

2 T butter

2 cups bone broth (or veggie broth)

1 T cumin

1 T coriander

1 T turmeric

1 T paprika

1 T garlic salt

1 t  pepper

2 T coconut sugar (optional)

2 lemons, juiced

Optional: Raw sour cream (or raw plain yogurt), for serving

Optional: Cilantro, for serving

Directions:

  1. Place a vegetable steamer in a large stock pot. Add water, butter, and butternut squash. Steam the butternut squash until pierced easily with a knife.
  2. Once steamed, place squash in stock pot (leave water in pot). Add carrots, celery, onions, and garlic. Add broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer. 
  3. Add cumin and the next six ingredients. Keep at simmer for about 30 minutes. Remove from heat, and allow to cool for about 15 minutes.
  4. Use an immersion blender to purée soup (regular blender or food processor will also work).  Add lemon juice. Serve with a dollop of sour cream or plain yogurt and garnish with cilantro. Makes about 8 servings. 

Onions are a good source of vitamins C and B6, potassium, and manganese. They are also rich in antioxidants, particularly quercetin, kaempferol, and myricetin, which all play a role in cancer prevention. Onions also help to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and osteoporosis.

Carrots are good sources of vitamins A, C, B6 & K, biotin, potassium, thiamine, and fiber. They are also rich in antioxidants and good source of starchy carbohydrates.

Butternut Squash is a good source of antioxidant carotenoids, vitamins C, B1, B6, folic acid, and pantothenic acid. It is also a good source of potassium, manganese, and fiber. Dark-fleshed winter squash is shown to be protective against cancer, especially lung cancer, heart disease, and and type II diabetes.

 

Sources:

Murray, M., Pizzorno, J., & Pizzorno, L. (2005). Encyclopedia of Healing Foods
New York, NY: Atria Books.

 Reinhard, T (2014). Superfoods: The Healthiest Foods on the Planet
Buffalo, NY: Firefly Books. 

In Season, in December

It’s December first (not quite sure how that happened!!)! Here is the list of what’s in season in December (especially in Northern California). Mandarins are exciting to see on this list. And I’m excited to have lemons back on my tree!!

What seasonal produce are you excited for?

IMG_5963

Health & Hugs <3,

Katie

DISCLAIMER: I am NOT a Registered Dietician or Medical Doctor. As such, I do NOT provide medical nutrition services, or diagnose and treat disease. Rather, I educate people on the benefits of a healthy lifestyle to improve their quality of life. I advise people with existing medical problems to consult with medical doctors. I shared evidence-based health information, whether to class participants, wellness counseling client sessions, or on this website.

 

Ten Food Swaps

As I read more, listen to my lectures, and talk to friends and clients, I have come to the belief that there are about 10 recommendations that I often suggest to people. These same 10 suggestions apply for most people and for most health concerns. If you were trying to make healthier choices in your diet, this is a basic list that can be your jumping off point. Here are my recommendations for 10 things to add to or replace in your diet. But not until Friday. 😉 After all, tomorrow is Thanksgiving and life is for living and enjoying. You have to live your life and holiday foods most definitely qualify.

Screen Shot 2015-11-25 at 9.19.33 PM

Eat This 🙂 Instead of That 😦
Grass-fed Butter

Butter is great to cook with because unlike most vegetable oils, it does not oxidize at low temperatures. It reduces inflammation and is rich in conjugated-linoleic acid and vitamins A, D & K2.

Margarine

Margarine is made of crop oils that are partially hydrogenated, turning them from liquid into a solid. This turns the fats into trans fats, substances that our bodies have trouble recognizing and processing.

Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is a great source of medium chain triglycerides, which are antiviral and antibacterial. These medium chain fatty acids are easily absorbed by the body and protect against heart disease and promote weight loss. It is a great high heat cooking oil, as it doesn’t oxidize at low temperatures.

All other Vegetable Oils

Vegetable oils oxidize at lower temperatures, meaning they become damaged and inflammatory when used in cooking. They are also highly processed using high heat, so they are likely damaged even before used in cooking. When exposed to light (through the clear bottles the are packaged in) further oxidation occurs.

Honey, Maple Syrup, Date Sugar, or Coconut Sugar

Coconut sugar is a low-glycemic sweetener. Both coconut sugar and date sugar are not as heavily processed as other sugars. Raw honey and maple syrup are not processed either. These all make great sugar alternatives when used in moderation.

Sugar, Agave, Artificial Sweeteners

High blood sugar is a problem with many health concerns. Artificial sweeteners are linked to declines in kidney function, brain tumors, autoimmune conditions, and are potential neurotoxins. Agave, while a low-glycemic sweetener, is heavily processed, making it similar to high-fructose corn syrup.

Raw Nuts and Seeds

Seeds contain all the nutrients for that the plant needs to start life, making them nutrient dense. They are often rich in omega-3s, great sources of protein, fats, and vitamins and minerals. Nuts and seeds have a “season” like all other produce, and can go bad like all other produce, so they should be eaten raw.

Roasted Nuts and Seeds

Similarly to crop oils, nuts and seeds oxidize when exposed to high heats, therefore roasted nuts and seeds are likely to cause oxidative damage and inflammation in the body. Nuts and seeds are also often roasted to preserve them, but also to hide the rancidity of the nuts or seeds.

Sparkling Water

For a treat, sparkling water is a nice alternative to regular filtered water. Adding fruit, a squeeze of lime juice, or some grapefruit essential oil to the sparkling water can also help to break up the repetition.

Soda

Sugary drinks actually cause the taste buds to crave more sugar. To process sugars, vitamins and minerals must be taken from the tissues, therefore repeated exposure can lead to nutrient deficiencies.

Sea Salt

The best salt choices are not white – either grey, pink, or other colors. These salts contain trace minerals that we need and can be hard to find.

Iodized Salt

Iodized salt often has added sugar and aluminum. It is also processed to remove all other trace minerals.

Spaghetti Squash, Zoodles, or Kelp Noodles

These are nutrient dense substitutions for pasta and are low in calories. Zoodles are zucchini that have been spiralized into spaghetti-like noodles.

Pasta

Pasta is a refined food that is rich in calories, but low in nutrients. While it may be tasty, it’s a modern convenience food that isn’t needed.

Tea

Herbals teas are a great alternative to coffee. Teas do not create the stress response that coffee does and are often filled with nutritional benefits.

Coffee

Coffee stimulates the adrenal glands to produce more cortisol and adrenaline, keeping the adrenals on overload. It also raises blood sugar and depletes vitamins and minerals.

Full-fat Dairy

Dairy is a good source of protein, healthy fats, calcium and fat-soluble vitamins A, D, and K2.

Nonfat Dairy

When you remove the fat from dairy, you are left with a lot of dairy sugar, lactose. Nature would not package something “bad” with something good just for us to wait thousands of years for scientists to learn how to separate the fat out of dairy.

Pasture-raised Eggs

Eggs do contain cholesterol and fat, and the reality is that we need both. Both are in every cell of the human body. Cholesterol supports brain function, serotonin production, and it acts as an antioxidant. Your heart gets 60% of its energy from fat and you brain is mostly fat.

Egg Whites/ Egg Substitutes/ Non-Pasture-raised Eggs

Nature did not package something good for us with something bad for us just to wait thousands of years for humans to invent egg-beaters. You are what you eat, so if you’re eating poorly raised eggs, you are not getting the nutrients that you need.

Health & Hugs <3,

Katie

 

References:

Axe, J. (2015). Step away from the diet coke. Retrieved from http://draxe.com/step-away-from-the-diet-coke/

Bauman, E. (2014) Foundations of Nutrition. Penngrove, CA: Bauman Press.

Bowden, J. & Sinatra, S. (2012). The Great Cholesterol Myth. Beverly, MA: Fair Winds Press.

Knoff, L (2014) Personal Communication.

Murray, M., Pizzorno, J., & Pizzorno, L. (2005). The Encyclopedia of Healing Foods. New York, NY: Atria Books.

Wolfe, L. (2013). Eat the Yolks. Las Vegas, NV: Victory Belt Publishing.

 

DISCLAIMER: I am NOT a Registered Dietician or Medical Doctor. As such, I do NOT provide medical nutrition services, or diagnose and treat disease. Rather, I educate people on the benefits of a healthy lifestyle to improve their quality of life. I advise people with existing medical problems to consult with medical doctors. I shared evidence-based health information, whether to class participants, wellness counseling client sessions, or on this website.

In season, in November

A new month is here and with it comes new fruits and veggies.  My favorite item on this list is Brussels sprouts. I could eat them nearly everyday. My other favorites on this list are Pears, Winter Squash, and Radishes. I love roasting radishes with butter – they taste just like roasted new potatoes (a great alternative for those avoiding nightshades!).  What’s your favorite thing on the list?

Hugs & Health

Katie

In season, in November

This image comes from a poster made in San Fransisco by an artist collective called This is YA.

DISCLAIMER: I am NOT a Registered Dietician or Medical Doctor. As such, I do NOT provide medical nutrition services, or diagnose and treat disease. Rather, I educate people on the benefits of a healthy lifestyle to improve their quality of life. I advise people with existing medical problems to consult with medical doctors. I shared evidence-based health information, whether to class participants, wellness counseling client sessions, or on this website.

Asian Style Turkey Lettuce Wraps [Paleo, Primal, GF]

Ever since going paleo a few years ago, we’ve been trying to expand our repertoire of recipes. A colleague suggested lettuce wraps and boom this recipe was born. It’s been tweaked over the years, but here it is in its latest form.

Asian Style Turkey Lettuce Wraps

Recipe:Asian Style Turkey Lettuce Wraps

1 lb. ground turkey (I prefer the higher fat content over the lean version)

5 medium carrots, tops trimmed

4 stalks of celery, tops and ends trimmed

1 medium yellow onion, peeled and quartered

10-12 romaine lettuce leaves, washed and trimmed

2 T Rendered Duck Fat or Ghee

2 T Coconut Aminos or Gluten Free Tamari (if you can have soy)

2 T Coconut Vinegar or rice vinegar (if you can have rice, I prefer this one)

1 T fresh ginger, grated

2 cloves of garlic, minced

1 T sesame seeds

1 T sesame oil

Directions:

1.) Melt the duck fat or ghee in a skillet over medium heat. 2.) Brown the ground turkey. 3.) While the turkey is browning in the pan, grate the onion, celery, and carrots in a food processor, using the grater blade. 4.) Once turkey is nearly all browned, add the coconut aminos, vinegar, ginger, garlic, sesame seeds and oil. Mix to combine. 5.) Add the grated vegetables and bring to a simmer until veggies are cooked. 6.) Place ground turkey mixture on the romaine lettuce leaves and enjoy!

Makes about 4 servings.

Onions are a good source of vitamins C and B6, potassium, and manganese. They are also rich in antioxidants, particularly quercetin, kaempferol, and myricetin, which all play a role in cancer prevention. Onions also help to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and osteoporosis. Quercetin plays a large role in healing the gut.

Carrots are good sources of vitamins A, C, B6 & K, biotin, potassium, thiamine (B1), and fiber. They are also rich in antioxidants and good source of starchy carbohydrates.

Turkey is rich in glutamine, which is an important amino acid for healing the small intestines of those with leaky gut. It is also rich in vitamins B6 and B12, protein, niacin, phosphorous, selenium, zinc, pantothenic acid, riboflavin, iron, potassium, and magnesium.

Ginger has long been used for gastrointestinal problems, making this an ideal food for those with leaky gut and other GI troubles. It relaxes and soothes the intestines and promotes the elimination of gas. It is also anti-inflammatory. Always choose fresh over dried, as it has higher levels of ginger’s active protease.

Nutrition Facts for one serving (this recipe yields about 4 servings)

asianstyleturkeylettucewrapslabel

DISCLAIMER: I am NOT a Registered Dietician or Medical Doctor. As such, I do NOT provide medical nutrition services, or diagnose and treat disease. Rather, I educate people on the benefits of a healthy lifestyle to improve their quality of life. I advise people with existing medical problems to consult with medical doctors. I shared evidence-based health information, whether to class participants, wellness counseling client sessions, or on this website.

Sources:

Murray, M., Pizzorno, J., & Pizzorno, L. (2005). The Encyclopedia of Healing Foods. New York, NY: Atria Books.

Reinhard, T. (2014). Super Foods: The Healthiest Foods on the Planet. Buffalo, NY: Firefly Books.

Robinson, J. (2013). Eating On the Wild Side. New York, NY: Little, Brown and Company.

Strawberry Chia Seed Pudding [Paleo, GF, Primal, Vegetarian]

Strawberry Chia Seed Pudding

Recipe:

strawberrychiaseedpudding1 can full-fat coconut milk

2-4 tbsp. chia seeds (2 for a thinner pudding and 4 for a thicker pudding)

10-15 organic strawberries, rinsed and trimmed

1 tsp. vanilla

2 tbsp. raw honey

Directions:

  1. Place coconut milk, chia seeds, and strawberries in food processor and pulse until it becomes a smooth consistency.
  2. Add the vanilla and honey. Pulse until just incorporated.
  3. Place into small jars and store in refrigerator for 1-2 hours or overnight. Chia seeds become gelatinous and will thicken the pudding as it sits. It can also be eaten right away.

Modifications:

There are many other options for chia seed pudding. Try experimenting with other seasonal fruits like peaches, raspberries, pears, blueberries, and even pumpkin. Also consider adding nuts, other seeds, and spices. The possibilities are endless!

Coconut Milk comes from the coconut and is found in tropical regions in Asia, Latin America, and the Pacific Islands. Coconuts contain healthful medium chain fatty acids such as lauric acid and capric acid, which are antiviral and antibacterial. These medium chain fatty acids are easily absorbed by the body and help to increase the metabolism. They also protect against heart disease and promote weight loss. In addition to fatty acids, coconuts also contain healthy carbohydrates and some protein. Coconuts are a good source of manganese, molybdenum, copper, zinc, and selenium. When choosing a coconut milk, avoid the low fat options because the beneficial medium chain fatty acids have been removed.

Chia seeds are those same seeds that are used in the popular Chia pets. They come from the plant Salvia Hispanica that grows in the deserts of Mexico. They help to reduce food cravings, reduce blood pressure, control blood sugar, and they are easier to digest than flax. Chia seeds should be soaked in water before using, creating a chia gel, which helps to hydrate the body. Chia seeds are rich in Omega-6 and Omega-3 fatty acids. They are also a good source of antioxidants, potassium, calcium, iron, dietary fiber, and they have some protein too!

Strawberries are the most popular berries in the world and are native to many parts of the world. Strawberries are rich sources of vitamins C, K, B6, and B1, silicon, fiber, flavonoids, manganese, pantothenic acid, iodine, folic acid, and biotin. Their flavonoid content helps to protect against inflammation, cancer, and heart disease. When storing berries, do not wash them until you plan on eating them because berries start to breakdown when they are moist. Strawberries are consistently on the Environmental Working Group’s Dirty Dozen list, so it is very important to buy organic strawberries.

Honey is one of the four items that bees produce. Honey is rich in riboflavin, iron, manganese, and vitamin B6. It is also rich in antioxidants and it is an antiseptic. Local honeys are also said to help with seasonal allergies.

Nutrition Facts for one 1/2 cup serving

Strawberry Chia Seed Pudding Label

DISCLAIMER: I am NOT a Registered Dietician or Medical Doctor. As such, I do NOT provide medical nutrition services, or diagnose and treat disease. Rather, I educate people on the benefits of a healthy lifestyle to improve their quality of life. I advise people with existing medical problems to consult with medical doctors. I shared evidence-based health information, whether to class participants, wellness counseling client sessions, or on this website.

Sources:

Bauman, E. & Friedlander, J. (2014). Foundations of Nutrition. Penngrove, CA: Bauman College.

Environmental Working Group (EWG). (2014, April). EWG’s 2013 Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce. Retrieved from http://www.ewg.org/foodnews/summary.php

Murray, M., Pizzorno, J., & Pizzorno, L. (2005). The Encyclopedia of Healing Foods. New York, NY: Atria Books.

Nuts.com (2014, April). 7 Good Reasons to Start Eating Chia Seeds. Retrieved from http://www.nuts.com/cookingbaking/chia-seeds/premium.html

WebMD. (2014, April). The Truth About Chia. Retrieved from http://www.webmd.com/diet/features/truth-about-chia