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Posts Tagged ‘Healthy Diet’

Kale Salad Seattle WAI stole this from a recent party. It was such a fan favorite I had to pass it on. Great for Springtime or a cleanse but also good enough for a party.
Dressing
1/2 c. fresh lemon juice
3 1/2 T. dijon
2 T. minced shallots
2 cloves minced garlic
1/4 t. salt; pepper
 
Mix above and emulsify with 1 c. virgin olive oil.
 
 
Salad
3 1/2 cups shredded brussel sprouts (food processor or cut finely into shreds)
2 pounds fresh kale; remove core and chop well (green, red — any kind of kale)
 
Pour desired quantity of dressing over kale and let sit a couple of hours before serving.
 
 
 
Additions
Shredded carrot; chopped apple; pecans, walnuts, or almonds; chopped avodaco; craisins or tart cherries; chopped bacon; red, yellow or orange pepper; quinoa; shredded pecorino cheese.
 
You can add anything to the basic salad to enrich it.  I added carrot, avocado, pecorino, apple, walnuts.
Like this recipe? Find others you enjoy and reset your health with our Elemental Detox.
Lindsey Lawson Acupuncture in Seattle WALindsey Lawson MS EAMP is an Acupuncturist, Chinese Herbalist and Clinic Director at Glow Natural Health and Seattle Fertility Acupuncturist. She is passionate about healthy, happy living, food and is a regular blogger.  For an appointment call Glow at 206 568 7545.

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I love this side dish in the cold winter months. It’s a beautiful bright orange,tasty and good for you!

1 head cauliflower, cut into florets

1-2 t Turmeric

5 cloves of garlic, peeled with the ends taken off

¼ cup almonds

3 T olive oil

1 small yellow onion (optional)

Salt to taste

Preheat oven to 425 degrees

Toss all ingredients together and place into a medium baking dish. Roast until tender 20-25 minutes. Serve hot.

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Many of you know that I have a pear tree. Every year it produces abundantly and I have an Iron Chef Pear competition with myself. Joel helps out as well and it’s pretty fun.One of my best “invented” recipes to date is this soup. Feel free to vary the spices according to your taste. ( Less garlic and no chilies for those less inclined toward spice.)

2 large organic onions diced

2-3 medium organic pears cut in to 1/2 in. pieces

2 tablespoons butter

32 fl. oz. organic chicken stock (or veggie stock)

3 cloves garlic minced

1 teaspoon dried chilies

salt and pepper to taste

Saute the onions and butter over low to medium low heat until translucent ( Do not brown) I like to salt my onions a little too.

Add pears and garlic, and cook for 10 min.

Add chicken stock and dried chilies. Simmer for 1 hour uncovered, stir every 10 or so minutes. If you like a thicker soup use an immersion blender and pulse until desired consistency.

Variations: Add chicken for a rich stew, garnish with fresh fried sage or toasted walnuts.

Commentary:

This soup is perfect for fall not just because pears are in season. Autumn is the metal time of the year. Time to letting go, pulling inward,of pruning off that which is no longer fills us with life. It’s time to store up food and prepare for the coming winter.

In “Healing with Whole Foods”,Paul Pitchford says, “Everything in nature contracts and moves its essence inward and downward. Leaves and fruits fall, seeds dry, and the sap of trees goes into the roots.The earth’s grasses start to lose their deep green color turning lighter and drier.”

In Chinese Medicine the organs associated with the Metal element are the lungs and large intestine. It is a good time strengthen the immune system and regulate digestion for vitality. These organs can be easily damaged by “dryness” and pears are protective and nourishing. Cooling, sweet and slightly sour in nature they eliminate mucus, ease a dry cough and moisten the lungs and throat. They can be slightly cloying for the digestion which is why the onions are the perfect addition.

Onions are powerful immune system boosters. Again according to Pitchford, they are traditionally used to ease coughs and bronchial aliments, lower cholesterol, treat dysentery, induce sweating, inhibit allergic reactions, and as a cure for the common cold.

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Those of you who are Kombucha drinkers already know you are special. You know how much you look forward to your nightly “Booch,” you favorite flavor or brand, the familiar healthy “buzz.” So I know I wasn’t alone in my disbelief at seeing  my beloved beverage disappear from the shelves this past June. No one seemed to know much except that “certain” bottles had been tested with higher then labeled .5 % levels of alcohol.  Could it be that my healthy “buzz” was really an alcoholic buzz? No wonder I liked it!!

Why did my Kombucha get pulled from the shelves? I’d always been curious about the miracle that is Kombucha. Curious and a little wary that is. I knew it was easily brewed at home from a Mother. (Insert alien theme song here.) But exactly what are people brewing up in their basements anyway? No thanks. I’d rather pay for a nice GT created bottle of yumminess. That is until this was no longer an option. I decided to find out for myself why these products were pulled and when they’d be back.

I really nerded out about this friends. I mean really. I read for hours searching high and low for everything Kombucha. I’d lay awake at night thinking about things I didn’t quite get that I’d have to clarify later. It’s a complicated subject and like any form of brewing both an art and science. Most of what I now know can somehow be traced to Ed Hardy and his website happyherbalist.com. He’s been brewing kombucha tea, beer, vinegar, wine as well as other fermented products for many years. If you have a real interest I recommend starting with his info.

What does it taste like? For those of you who are Booch virgins or maybe just don’t like the stuff, here’s the skinny. I didn’t like it the first time I tried it either. But did you like beer the first time you tried it? Or stinky cheese? It’s really an acquired taste. At once sweet, sour, slightly bubbly, but waxing poetic aside I thought it tasted like the bottom of my compost container. Now? Ambrosia.

How do you brew it? It turns out that there is plenty variation in Kombucha taste and brewing techniques. I’ve come to believe that my favorite bottled variety is made in the tradition of Champagne kombuchas. It has a slightly higher alcohol content than the teas, highly effervescent and is a party in a glass. Other varieties I’ve tried lately are more in the tradition of kombucha tea and are like drinking slightly bubbly juice. Also pleasant, but not quite my thing.

Why is is healthy to drink it? Other side notes of my obsession, I mean “research”, include the discovery that the kombucha ” mushroom” is no mushroom at all, but a biofilm of bacteria and yeast. The mother, or SCOBY is a synchrinistic combination of yeast and bacteria. It ferments the tea and sugar to produce a beverage full of healthful acids and probiotics. A living tonic. The benefits (which are proported to be many) seem to be derived from the probiotics and acetic acid (see study done by Cornell), but it also contains gluconic acid. Gluconic acid is thought to cause the liver to secrete glucoronic acid and thus promote detoxification. All I know for sure is I sure feel good when I drink it.

Lindsey Lawson MS EAMP is an Acupuncturist, Chinese Herbalist and Clinic Director at Glow Natural Health and Seattle Fertility Acupuncturist. She is passionate about healthy , happy living and a regular blogger. For an appointment call Glow at 206 568 7545.

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Today I’m making some heirloom beans and lamb burgers for dinner. Heirloom beans (and other friuts and vegetables)are varietes that for whatever reason have fallen out of cultivation. This is usually due to lower yeilds, or a less than  perfect supermarket product in comparion to say, a conventional kidney bean. The payoff for trying these less common varieties is in the remarkably diverse flavor and texture. Who knew a bean could be so good? Even with all this beautiful spring weather it’s still cool enough to snuggle into a tasty bean.

Don’t know how to cook a dried bean? Here’s a link to a great 3 minute video that shows just how easy it is! http://ranchogordo.com/html/rg_cook_index.htm Scoll down the page to the video that says ” When the vegetables are soft add the beans and cover with water by about 1 inch.” Added bonus is the kitchy mexican fiesta music in the background. Happy cooking!

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This past weekend I had the pleasure of connecting with a couple older friends. The topic turned to health, aging and their complaints surrounding getting old. It got me thinking about healthy aging. What does it mean to age gracefully? What are some keystones in the healthy aging process?

Of course my first thought is diet. (Exercise too but that’s for another rant.) Just as they’ve done to everything else the boomers are changing the way we think about aging. They are searching for answers and solutions about their health. But this is fraught with controversy and conflicting information. From my perspective there is no right diet for everyone. Food sensitivities, organics, seasonality, locality, sustainability all need to be taken into consideration. As a general rule, less processed more whole foods are better. Being a foodie, of course I think it should taste delicious, but I’m not immune to the power of convenience either. I don’t believe the two to be mutually exclusive.  Eat from the farmer’s market people!! http://www.seattlefarmersmarkets.org/ Or consider having your produce delivered by one of the many Community Supported Agriculture programs. In Seattle there’s almost no excuse for not enjoying delicious, healthful eating.

Even my well educated friends I saw this weekend, who ARE diet conscious have trouble knowing what to focus on. Low fat? Low Carb? Weight watchers?(This one makes me cringe, but hey, it works and obesity isn’t healthy either.) Culturally we’ve become disconnected from our food, and we’ve certainly lost the idea of food as medicine.

Then there is the question of supplements. Which ones to take? How often to take them? Fish oil has hit mainstream awareness but other healthy heavy weights like fermented foods and beverages (Kombucha!!) are still on the fringe.(Though not for our wise readers!) Check out the book “Nourishing Traditions” for more info on the benefits of fermented foods.

I checked our Dr. Andrew Weil’s website. I’m not his biggest fan but he’s instituted a shift in the public awareness around alternative medicine which I think is good. He has created a new food pyramid which I think is useful in conceptualizing what foods to eat and in what ratios. Here’s the link. http://www.drweil.com/drw/u/ART02995/Dr-Weil-Anti-Inflammatory-Food-Pyramid.html Here’s what he has to say about it.

  • It is a practical eating guide that consumers of all ages can use, with tips on how to reduce risks of age-related diseases and improve overall health through diet.
  • It is an interactive educational graphic to help today’s families prevent disease while eating well.
  • It is a simple tool that promotes optimum health and healthy aging by providing dietary advice that addresses inflammation.

 What is hard for me to see is that in their quest for healthier happier lives consumers’ pill boxes are filling up. I feel that it’s easy to underestimate the power of food, to discount food as viable medicine. More and more we are seeing the interactions of various medicines having unwanted and unhealthy results. Why not try a diet change first or at least concurrently with medications? I believe this to be especially important in all chronic diseases with an inflammatory component. A good resource for this is the “Anti inflammatory diet and recipe book” which we carry at our office. It explains that MOST diseases have an inflammatory component, not just the obvious ones like a stiff, swollen knee or allergies. This is one reason that acupuncture can treat such a wide variety of illnesses as well. It reduces the inflammatory response.

I guess my point is, don’t underestimate the power of the foods you eat. While medications can take care of symptoms, they can also have nasty side effects and unwanted interactions. Your diet is the foundation of your health, and a simple way to give yourself the best chance to age gracefully and healthfully.

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That’s right folks half way there. Things have been going pretty well for me. Day 1 was a bit of a shock at work. The option of running out to grab a quick snack was out. (My favorite salmon cakes have wheat in them.) Overall though, it’s been great to reconnect with some old favorite recipes and invent some new ones. The black bean soup with sweet potatoes garnished with avocado and cilantro was delish. For a special treat I made some muffins using Bob’s Red Mill gluten free baking mix. I added kalamata olives and green olives for kicks.

I’ve had a few phone calls and texts from fellow detoxers with near misses and slight slips. The dreaded wine after work craving. ( I recommend some grape Kombucha in a wine glass. It takes some getting use to but then it’s downright addictive.) One friend ate Indian and ordered the whole meal vegan until dessert when she forgot that mango ice cream was, well ice cream. Oh well one small slip does not a detox ruin.

Then there were the various detoxing side effects folks experienced. Headaches seem to be the most common. Runny nose happened for a couple people. I seemed like these were definitely improved by acupuncture, visits to the spa and drinking more water. I always think it’s good when those things happen. You know you’ll be so much better off then you were before when they are over.

Well off for another cup of mint tea. yummy

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