Fun, Fab, FAT diet

It’s dinnertime! It’s time for the low fat, low carb, low sodium meal again. Sound delicious? Not really! These are the kinds of meals that I used to make in 2010. I’m so glad that I am not eating this way anymore. Do you know why? Research shows, and health gurus agree that…fat…is…good for us! Our brains and bodies need fat to work properly. It’s also difficult to feel satiated when we don’t consume enough fat. Filling up on carbs to feel full may lead to health problems like diabetes and obesity.

If you want more information about a diet high in fats, you may want to read about the Ketogenic diet. My husband has been on this diet and has lost 40 pounds. Personally, I don’t follow a particular diet. I believe that the ideal diet includes organic/natural/clean foods and should contain mostly vegetables/fruits/nuts/seeds, some meat, and minimal grains/sweets.

Regardless of the diet that you follow, our bodies need fat. Some healthy fats include organic/free-range eggs, organic/free-range chicken, organic/grass-fed beef, organic/grass-fed butter, coconut oil and olive oil (please note that olive oil is unhealthy at high temperatures).

Let’s get back to dinner. Now I’m hankerin’ for a large portion of colorful vegetables, some grass-fed beef and a small portion of quinoa. Let’s throw in some organic, full fat butter. Doesn’t that sound delicious? Bon Appetit!

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Healthy Smoothies

Making smoothies is a fun and easy way to add more vegetables, healthy foods and supplements to your diet. Continue reading for some tips on making smoothies!

THE BLENDER

First off, if you want to make smoothies on a consistent basis, I recommend that you buy a high-quality blender. The first blender that I used was not very powerful and it was a smaller machine. It took a long time to mix all the ingredients together and the finished product was not very smooth. When it broke, we bought a two-quart Waring (MX1000XTX) blender. This professional blender cost us a lot more than our last one, but it was worth it. The Waring quickly and effortlessly blends fruits and vegetables with a 3.5 horsepower engine!

THE INGREDIENTS

Vegetables: I like to use kale and spinach because I need to add more green foods to my diet. Carrots and cucumbers are also great choices. These will all provide vital vitamins, minerals and fiber to your body!

Fruits: I love pineapples, kiwis, avocados, bananas and berries. Be careful not to put too much fruit in your smoothies, especially if you have diabetes and/or if you are trying to lose weight.

Seeds: I usually forget to eat seeds unless I add some in my smoothies. In addition to a long list of other healthy benefits for the body, flax seeds and chia seeds provide support for the digestive system, skin and heart.

Supplements: I like to use Ancient Nutrition’s Multi Collagen Protein. According to the bottle, Multi Collagen Protein is a “superfood powder” that is designed for “promoting healthy skin” and “supporting healthy joints.” Bee pollen is also wonderful for the immune system and the whole body!

Natural Sweeteners: If you want your smoothie to taste sweeter, opt for raw honey or organic stevia. In contrast to artificial sweeteners that harm your health, honey and stevia can boost your health in many ways. For example, honey is packed with antioxidants that can help prevent diseases and research has shown that stevia can help fight cancer.

RECIPES AND RESOURCES

Smoothies for Specific Ailments: In the past, I regularly made smoothies from the book entitled “Dr. Tom Wu’s Different Approach in Natural Healing: Conquer Cancer and Other Diseases with Simple Foods.” This book contains smoothie recipes for specific ailments/body systems. The Skin/Digestion smoothie was helpful with my daughter’s eczema and my psoriasis. I haven’t made this smoothie in awhile because it was time-consuming to make and it didn’t taste very good. However, I definitely recommend this book for people that want to heal their bodies with healthy foods. In addition to an improvement in my skin, I always felt more energized after drinking Dr. Wu’s smoothies.

Gut-Healing Smoothie: My favorite recipe contains almond milk, kale, spinach, avocado, bananas, ginger, flax seeds, bee pollen, hemp hearts, raw honey and collagen protein. Unlike other healthy smoothies, this one is reasonably tasty because of the bananas and honey. I always feel satiated and strengthened after drinking this smoothie; it also makes my dry skin feel better. You can find the recipe at Dr. Axe’s website (click here). Please note: for this recipe, you might need to decrease some of the ingredients to fit them all in your blender (they did not all fit into my two-quart blender).

Thrive Market: If you aren’t sure where to buy certain ingredients and health supplements for your smoothies, consider Thrive Market (click here to read more about Thrive). Buying health supplements on Amazon is not recommended.

What are some of your favorite smoothie recipes?

I Am My Own Lab Rat: The Lab Rat Discovers Fish Oil

I’m a Registered Nurse and was taught that regular use of health supplements is usually unnecessary and potentially dangerous. For this short blog post, I am not going to cite a slew of research articles that confirm or negate this view. I am simply going to share my experience with you. It turned me into a regular user of health supplements!

In 2014, I started having strange symptoms in my hand and foot. I would bend my thumb and it would lock into place for about half a minute. Around the same time, the same symptom occurred on my foot while I was driving. Luckily, I was only a block away from home! After this, I started to have tightness in my entire hand which led to pain in my hand. After about a week, my hand became so tight that I could barely write with it. My doctor tested me for an electrolyte imbalance and found everything to be normal. Instead of undergoing more testing, I decided to do some research on my own. This research let to my discovery of fish oil. I started taking fish oil and all my symptoms were gone within a week! I started taking fish oil in 2014 and have not had the same issues since then.

What is your view on health supplements? If you use them, please use non-GMO, high-quality supplements that are made from whole foods!

Favorite Healthy Grocery Stores

Looking for healthier grocery stores? Our family tries to eat organic, non-GMO foods whenever possible. That is why we enjoy shopping at Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s and Thrive Market!

Whole Foods

Whole Foods carries organic, natural foods along with body care, health supplements and a limited supply of other household items. The store also sells pre-made food and food that you can have cooked while you shop. When we don’t have time to cook, we enjoy the Whole Foods’ pizza, organic rotisserie chicken, burgers and Asian cuisine. The hot bar and cold bars also sell a variety of healthy foods, comfort foods and some ethnic foods. The cookies, cakes, gelato and ice creams from the bakery are made with real sugar and other real food ingredients. Simply delicious!

Whole Foods seems to be the most expensive of the three stores, but you can save money by choosing the 365 brand (the more affordable Whole Foods brand); you can also save a little bit of money if you are an Amazon Prime member. I like Whole Foods because of its wide selection of foods (including pre-made foods) and high-quality products. I have been shopping at Whole Foods for ten years and I can only remember a couple of times when I could not find a particular exotic food item that I was looking for!

Trader Joe’s

Trader Joe’s is a kid-friendly store that provides unique natural and organic foods. They also carry a very limited amount of health supplements and household products. My kids love Trader Joe’s because of the kid-size shopping carts, stuffed animals, lollipops and stickers. Each store has some kind of stuffed animal (our local stores have a monkey and a dragon named Norbert) that is hidden somewhere new everyday. At checkout, children are rewarded with a lollipop if they tell the cashier where the stuffed animal is hiding. The children are also given stickers at checkout. Fun seasonal items include pumpkin pop tarts and Trader Joe’s sells unique items like calamansi juice. The food selection is a lot smaller than Whole Foods, but I choose Trader Joe’s over other grocery stores because they promise that all of their products are GMO-free. Trader Joe’s is also a win because it is a very affordable, high-quality grocery store.

Thrive Market

Thrive Market carries many of the same products and brands as Whole Foods, but at lower prices. Like Trader Joe’s, Thrive also promises that all of their products are non-GMO. Products are ordered online and free shipping (shipping takes about three days) is provided for orders over $49. After a 30-day membership trial, you pay a yearly $59.95 membership fee which is donated to a family in need. Members can also receive free gifts such as coffee, pancake mix, supplements, nutrition bars, skin care and other great products when orders have reached a specific dollar amount. I like Thrive because of its convenience; I don’t have to leave the house and I have an endless amount of time to do research on products before buying. Thrive is also affordable and sells a diverse selection of products.

Where do you shop for high-quality groceries?

More Water, Better Water

Feeling thirsty? Instead of choosing sugary drinks that raise your blood sugar and sabotage weight loss efforts, reach for water! Here are a few tips about water.

Drink high-quality water. Tap water contains pharmaceutical residue, heavy metals and other contaminants that wreak havoc on your gut. For water purification, I highly recommend the Berkey filter. The main filters in the Berkey can last up to 15 years and the fluoride filters can last up to two years. The water from this high-performing filter tastes wonderful!

Don’t drink from plastic water bottles. I have read that water from store-bought plastic bottles are sometimes more contaminated than tap water because the water is not properly purified or regulated. Furthermore, if the plastic was sitting out in a hot warehouse or in the hot sun, the heat might have compromised the plastic and the plastic might be leaching into the water. This is a health hazard! Instead of buying water from the store, I filter my water and use Klean Kanteen water bottles.

Drink more water. I have seen conflicting research on the daily recommended intake of water. Therefore, instead of worrying too much about meeting a “water quota” everyday, just try to drink as much as you can. Try to choose water instead of any other drink.

If you don’t like the taste of water, add something to it. You can add some organic lemon to your water. Just make sure that you rinse your mouth after ingesting lemon because it can damage your teeth. You can also put a drop of lemon essential oil into your water. If the essential oil has been extracted from the lemon’s rind, you don’t have to rinse out your mouth as the rind will not erode your teeth. Lemon essential oil is great for cleansing the body! Please ensure that the essential oil that you use is pure as ingesting an essential oil that is not pure can be dangerous for your health.

Contact me if you are looking for pure essential oils!