Recipe: Spring Sunshine Smoothie

Ingredients:

6 Cups Coconut Water
2 Handfuls of Spinach
1/2 Cup Parsley
1 Stalk of Celery
1 Inch Knob Fresh Ginger
Juice of 1/2 Lime
1 Cup Strawberries
1 Tablespoon Raw Honey

 

Directions:

Combine all ingredients and blend until smooth.Yum!

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Blueberry Plum Compote with Coconut Teff Crust

Ingredients:
Blueberry Plum CompoteBlueberry Compote
2 Cups Water
2 Cups Plums, cut up
1/4 Cup Goji Berries
1 Tablespoon Ginger, minced
1/4 Cup Honey
2 Tablespoon Arrowroot
1/2 Cup Cold Water
6 Cups Fresh Blueberries

Additional blueberries and strawberries for flag decoration

Crust
1 Cup Teff Flour
1 Cup Coconut Flour
1 Cup Oat Flour
1 Cup Coconut Oil, melted
3/4 Cup Brown Sugar

Vanilla Coconut Cream
1 Cup Unsweetened Shredded Coconut
Seeds from 1 Vanilla Bean
2 Cups Coconut Milk, refrigerate overnight
1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
1 Tablespoon Organic Cane Sugar

Directions:

Crust: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Mix together three flours, add in brown sugar then melted coconut oil. Mix to incorporate and press into the bottom of a rectangular Pyrex baking dish. Bake for 15 minutes. Set aside to cool.

Blueberry Plum Compote: In a medium sauce pan, bring water to a boil. Add the plums, goji berries, ginger and honey. Bring to a slow boil and cook for 15 minutes. With Immersion Blender, puree the sauce until smooth. Bring back to a low boil.

Add arrowroot to cold water and whisk to a slurry. Pour into sauce pan and whisk until thickened and reduced, about 10-15 minutes. Add blueberries and cook on low boil for additional 15 minutes to cook blueberries, incorporate flavor and reduce.

Pour compote into crust and refrigerate to set 6-8 hours (overnight is best).

Cream: In a blender (Vitamix works great), add the shredded coconut and vanilla bean seeds and blend until smooth. Add white part only of coconut milk, vanilla and cane sugar and blend to incorporated, scraping down sides and mixing until smooth.

Spread the coconut cream frosting and decorate with fresh berries. Yum!

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Recipe: Red Quinoa Salad with Elephant Garlic & Greens

Red Quinoa Salad with Elephant Garlic & Greens

Ingredients:

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1 Cup Red Quinoa, rinse and drain
2 Cups Water
2Tablespoons Olive Oil
1 Cup Green Onions, diced
1/3 Cup Elephant Garlic, sliced
1 Cup Frozen Peas
1 teaspoon Cumin
1 teaspoon Coriander
1/2 teaspoon Sea Salt
1/2 teaspoon Pepper
4 Cups Kale, chopped small
2 Cups Broccoli Florets, to garnish


Directions:

In a medium sauce pan, bring water a boil. Add the rinsed quinoa and bring back to a boil. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer for 10 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat and set aside.

In a large sauté pan over medium heat, add the olive oil, green onions and garlic and sauté for 5 -7 minutes to slightly caramelize onions. Add peas and stir to combine.  Sprinkle in the cumin, coriander, salt and pepper and stir again.  Add in the kale, and cook until kale is bright green and wilted. Remove from heat.

Meanwhile, bring water to a boil in a separate medium sauce pot. Add broccoli and return to a boil. Cook for about 2-3 minutes until bright green.

Add the cooked quinoa to the sauté pan and fold to incorporate and deglaze pan. Plate the quinoa and vegetable sauté and surround the plate with steamed broccoli. Serve and enjoy! Yum!

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Energizing Protein Smoothie

Ingredients:energizing protein smoothie -newsletter

1 Scoop Protein Powder*

2 Cups Almond Milk

3 Tablespoons Almond Butter

1 Tablespoon Goji Powder

1 Tablespoon Honey

1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract

1 Frozen Banana

1 Cup Frozen Strawberries


Directions:

In a blender or Vitamix, blend together all ingredients until smooth and creamy. Enj0y! Yum!

 

* I recommend The Blum Center for Health’s  Liver Support Protein Powder!

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Recipe: Red Cabbage Asian Crunch Salad

Check out our video demo for this recipe here!

 

Red Cabbage Asian Crunch Salad

Ingredients:Red Cabbage Asian Crunch Salad

2 Tablespoons Brown Rice Vinegar
2 Tablespoons Tamari
1 teaspoon Maple Syrup
1 Tablespoon Fresh Ginger, minced
1 Tablespoon Light Sesame Oil
1 Cup Red Onion, thinly sliced
Sea salt to taste
3 Cups Red Cabbage, shredded
1 Cup Carrots, peeled and shredded
1 Tablespoon Fresh Parsley, chopped for garnish

Toasted Brown Rice
1 Cup Cooked Brown Rice
1 Tablespoon Toasted Sesame Oil

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Toasted Brown Rice: Add the cooked brown rice to a parchment lined baking sheet. Drizzle with toasted sesame oil and toss to coat. Spread the rice in an even layer and toast for 15 minutes.

In a small bowl, whisk together the vinegar, tamari, maple syrup and ginger.

In a large sauté pan heat the sesame oil over medium heat. Add the onion and a pinch of salt and sauté until the onions are translucent, about 3 minutes.

Add the red cabbage, carrots, and a pinch of salt and sauté until cabbage is slightly wilted, about 2 minutes.  Stir in the vinegar mixture and cook until the liquid is reduced by half and coats the vegetables.  Remove from heat and sprinkle with fresh parsley and toasted brown rice. Enjoy! Yum!

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Nourishing Fall Foods: Eat Healthy with the Seasons

Our local Fall harvests are full of warming, filling foods at the peak of their ripeness, flavor and affordability!  We love pairing these nutritious veggies with warm,  healing spices like ginger, turmeric and cinnamon. The Fall season is the perfect time to boost your immune system with these nourishing veggies. Check out some of our fall favorites below!

 

Winter Squash

Winter Squash:Acorn, Butternut, Delicata, Kabocha, Zucchini and Crooknook squash are all examples of the varieties of squash you will find in the Fall harvest. Studies show that winter squash is an excellent source of antioxidants like vitamin C and manganese which regulate our metabolism, promote healthy bones and protect our body from free radical damage. We love roasting, stuffing and turning these beautiful squash into creamy soups – the possibilities are endless!

 

Sweet Potatoes: These root vegetables are one of the best sources of beta-carotene, the red-orange pigment that our bodies convert to vitamin A (an essential vitamin for skin, eye and immune system health). Sweet potatoes are full of fiber, anti-inflammatory benefits and are a great blood-sugar regulator. In fact, their sweet flavor gives you the sensation of a sugary snack without the added sugar! Check out our Asian Sweet Potato Beet Cakes Photo from our online subscription program, Vegetarian Menu Plans Made Easy!

 


Brussels SproutsBrussels Sprouts:
  Like other cruciferous vegetables, Brussels sprouts are also well-known for their cancer-prevention properties as a great source of glucosinolates. Glucosinolates are  important phytonutrients for our health and these little veggies contain a special combination of these cancer-preventive components. Drizzle your Brussels sprouts with olive oil, maple syrup and garlic before roasting these healthy veggies to perfection!

 

Apples: Autumn is apple picking season and rightfully so! These little tree fruits are packed with phytonutrients, flavanoids and a generous serving of fiber. Apples are great for cardiovascular health, lowering bad cholesterol and regulating blood sugar. Depending on the variety, their sweet or tart, juicy flavor is perfect for not only snacking, but baking into delicious crisps and pies!

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Natural Remedies for Radiation Exposure & Protection

The toxicity in our environment today can be scary. Considering that there have been radioactive leaks in the world, both past, present and what seems to look like the future, I thought it relevant to offer some food choices that are beneficial to protect our bodies against the harmful effects of radiation exposure.

The harmful effects of radiation can sometimes go unnoticed in the body. Over time, a low level of radiation exposure can lead to issues such as digestive imbalance, blood alterations, tissue and organ destruction and cancer. There is a major concern around this level of radiation so we want to share some powerful ammunition – foods you should start incorporating into your diet!

Here is our list of 5 foods which can help protect your body against the harmful effects of radiation:

cilantroCilantro: You may have read our post, Fresh Herbs, More Than Just a Garnish, outlining the health benefits of these underrated fresh herbs. If so, then you’ve read up on how detoxifying cilantro is. Cilantro can help remove heavy metals like lead, mercury and uranium from our organs and blood stream. It acts as the kidney’s assistant to help flush out our system and protect against the dangers of radiation exposure!

 

Burdock Root: This strong little root is known for its use in natural medicinal remedies for everything from treating colds to detoxifying our blood! It’s medicinal qualities help protect against radiation damage by neutralizing and removing radioactive cells and isotopes from the body. Burdock can also help prevent and reverse DNA damage from radiation exposure. To get the most out of this root, keep it raw to avoid destroying the nutritional enzymes – you can do so by adding the raw root to your smoothie or juice!

 

KaleDark Leafy Greens: Just another reason we love dark leafy greens! Like cilantro,  our larger dark leafy greens are made up of chlorophyll, an alkaline component that helps provide protection from radiation damage. Not only do they help detoxify the liver and kidney, but these detoxifying qualities help prevent cancer as well. Darker leafy greens like kale, collards and mustard greens are your best bet for reducing the effect of radiation. Pair two or more to get the most resistance!

 

Sea Vegetables: Much like our land vegetables, sea vegetables are useful in detoxifying heavy metals from the body and protecting against radiation effects. Most sea vegetables (like kelp, kombu and wakame) are also excellent, natural sources of iodine – an element vital in protecting the thyroid from radiation exposure and the development of thyroid cancer. Just as with other foods, enjoy sea vegetables in moderation and know exactly where they are coming from to avoid vegetables from contaminated water (we love the Main Coast sea vegetables)!

 

LRD_22012013_0126Beets: Our circulatory systems are extremely vulnerable to any level of radiation and exposure can lead to body infections and increased likelihood of developing cancers of the blood. Fortunately, beets protect and aid the circulatory system in absorbing and detoxifying radioactive isotopes that may cause damage. They provide nutrients to rebuild damaged hemoglobin, broken down from radiation exposure.  Boiled, steamed or roasted, these root vegetables will protect your body and blood for optimal resistance to radiation!

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Grains: To Eat, or Not to Eat

Did you ever wonder why gluten intolerance is on the rise? Had you ever heard about it until a few years ago? The connection to the changes in our overall health and the manipulation of our food sources seems to be undeniable.

grains_newsletterGrains today contain much more gluten than ever before due to hybridization. Gluten intolerance and cases of Celiac disease have also rose about 4 times the amount with 1 in every 133 Americans diagnosed. Refined grains, the majority of consumption in the United States, are linked to obesity, heart disease, diabetes and more.

So it would seem that grains are the root of all evil, but there are fantastic gluten-free grains that can provide options for a healthy way of life while getting the nutrients your body needs from this powerhouse food group. Gluten-free grains like millet, quinoa and brown rice are all loaded with fiber and minerals, they are more easily digestible and are a great protein source (especially if you follow a plant-based diet!).

Gluten-free whole grains contain nutrients that lower cholesterol, decrease the risk of heart disease, control diabetes and help maintain a healthy weight. They are also known to have beneficial beauty effects on skin and aging by cleansing toxins and metabolizing fat and tissue repair! The key is moderation!

 

quinoa_newsletter

Go lighter on the grains and balance your plate. Keep your grain portion as a side dish compared to your veggies and greens. If you’re looking to lose a little around the waist line, limit your grains to one meal a day and keep your portion size to about the palm of your hand.

 

Try out this month’s featured recipe for the perfect mix of greens and grains!

Don’t be afraid to incorporate gluten-free grains into your diet! These power foods can be a great inclusion into your daily meals providing you with fuel and energy throughout your busy week! Food is nourishment and the best message you can receive is from your mind, body and inner voice – listen, learn and eat well!

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Top 4 Good Mood Foods

1. Vibrant Veggies

veggiesVegetables, especially dark leafy greens, boast a wide array of nutritional benefits including mood boosters! Green veggies like spinach, kale and broccoli contain high levels of folic acid – a B vitamin essential to mood and nerve function.  This vitamin regulates mood by boosting levels of serotonin which is a hormone in our bodies responsible for mood maintenance.

Veggies such as spinach, are also high in magnesium, a key mineral in metabolism. Magnesium is essential for energy, nervous system balance and blood sugar control – all elements that can impact our mood!

Blend a handful of spinach into your green smoothie or steam fresh broccoli for lunch to keep your mind and mood light and blissful.There you have it: eat green, feel good!

 

2. Berries, Beautiful Berries

Summer is berry season and fresh berries are notorious for their health benefits – including mood enhancement! These sweet, fresh fruits are chocked full of nutrients that help decrease stress levels and are  linked to lowering the chance of depression. The antioxidants in berries counteract cortisol – a chemical our bodies release in times of stress.

Blueberry Compote

If you’re experiencing stress at work or home, calm your nerves with a handful of fresh, organic berries in your breakfast oatmeal or as your mid-afternoon snack. Let the natural remedies do the work!

Check out July’s featured recipe for your serving of fresh berries!

 

3. Mood Mending Nuts

Omega-3 fatty acids are an essential ingredient for a good mood. These Healthy fats like  are known for their links to brain health as both a memory and mood booster. Studies show that this essential fatty acid has been linked to helping depression, ADHD and Alzheimer’s.walnuts

Walnuts and almonds are a great source of omega-3 as well as magnesium for the extra energy to fight off a bad day! Add a handful of chopped walnuts to your salad or bag up a few almonds for a mood boosting snack.

 

4. Brain Healthy Beans & Legumes

Beans and legumes are an underrated staple in the healthy food movement! These small protein packed superfoods are full of the antioxidant, selenium. This nutrient helps reduce oxidative stress in the brain helping to relax your body and mind.

Beans

These plant-based pods also keep blood sugar levels stable which translates to a stable mood!

Not only are beans and legumes full of fiber, keeping you satisfied longer, but they boast high levels of folic acid like our green, leafy friends! One cup of cooked lentils houses 90 percent of the recommended daily intake of folic acid.

Diets lacking in folate have been linked to depression so to keep up your mood, enjoy a beautiful lentil salad or nutritious bean burger and see how good you feel!

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Why Local and Organic Matters!

market fresh

Stay Local

Summer is the best time to get a taste of earth’s bounty at your local farmer’s market!

Supporting your local farms also supports the economy, the community and your health! What’s better than farm fresh fruits, vegetables and greens at their peak?

When choosing farm fresh produce you are:

  • Keeping the farms in business which supports your local community. You know exactly where you dollar is going!
  • Cutting the carbon footprint! Going local cuts down the use of fossil fuels and toxin emitting trucks carrying early picked produce across the country. Vendors at the market usually travel less than 100 miles with their fresh picks!
  • Receiving the freshest possible produce, picked just moments before making it to the stands. Studies show produce loses nutritional value as time passes from harvest. Fresh is best!

Buying local is the best way to sustain our local farms, the earth and your health! Take a trip to our local farmer’s market this summer and enjoy the fresh, healthful produce, baked goods, farm raised meats and much more from each of your local farmers! It truly is a unique experience!

Check out some of our favorite local farmers and markets:

Rockland Farm Alliance
Cropsey Community Farm
Nyack Farmer’s Market
Goshen Green Farm
Mid-Summer Farm
Taliaferro Farms

 

Choose Organic

What’s with all the hype around today’s food production and the risk to consumers? With the addition of GMO’s, hormones, antibiotics and cancer causing pesticides to our foods we are truly risking our health as well as environmental sustainability. So what can we do to help ourselves and our planet? Choose organic! usda organic

The truth is that when you make the choice to buy organic, you’re impacting both the planet and your body.  Organic food is produced by certified farmers using renewable resources without the use of harmful pesticides and additives causing disease and harm to our environment.  When you buy organic you are also supporting a huge cause to stop the use of these chemicals, hormones and pesticides. You have the opportunity to be a part of something larger than yourself!

Some of the uncertainty around buying organic lies in the cost. Although the price of some organic options may range a little higher than your conventional produce, the nutritional and economic benefits outweigh the cost. Try comparing the cost to that of your medical bill – it is well worth it!

The cost of organic food is based on the true cost of growing. Growing organic is more labor intensive and the price more than reflects the quality of the food you are getting. You have power in the dollar you spend! What’s better than fresh, true food without the harmful additives? See for yourself and pick up some fresh, organic, seasonal sugar snap peas or strawberries this week. You’ll taste and feel the difference after the first bite!

Support your health, the environment and the planet by buying organic. It’s one small step on the journey to vibrant health!

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