Tuesday, September 29, 2009

What's For Lunch

As I walked around the lunchroom at my work I noticed an eclectic verity of one poor dietary choice after another. If I didn't know any better I would have thought I was walking through a grade school cafeteria... sad really.

There's one guy eating some sort of lunch-meat sandwich on white bread, potato chips, a can of soda, and one of those little single serving snack pies; the only saving grace is the badly bruised seemingly way past its expiration date banana that sits amongst the other members of this otherwise unhealthy meal.

Another has what appears to be a spaghetti and meatball microwavable meal, two heavily buttered slices of white bread, a bag of chips, and a bottle of Snapple (trust me, not "from the best things on earth").

Oh, let me not forget the person eating the microwavable stew in a can... and these people wonder why they're not healthy.

It's sad to think that an adult would make the same poor choices as a child (if left up to him or her) when it comes to the question, "what's for lunch?" I think I even saw someone trade there pudding snack for a candy bar, but that just might have been my eyes playing tricks on me.

Well back to my lunch... a bowl of last night's home made organic chili (with grass fed beef) and an organic salad made with fresh organic (locally grown) ingredients.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

The Multivitamin Dilemma

If you're like most people that blindly shop for supplements down the vitamin aisle of your local food store or drug store, then you're basically allowing the manufacturer of these inferior products to make, what in my opinion is a very important decision for you... to them you either fall into the "Active Man or Woman's" multivitamin, the "over 40 multi", the "50 and up multi", etc.

The question here is, is there really a cookie cutter mold that we fall into when it comes to the nutrients our body's need?

It is true most people, especially those with an American diet full of highly processed foods, are deficient in certain nutrients (Vitamins C, D, B, Omega-3...), but what I've learned from my own research, my own experience, and through my kineliologist is that each of our bodies need different nutrients, not simply based on our age or how active we are but rather by how our bodies deal with toxins.

It is an undeniable fact that we are exposed to an astonishing number of toxins on a daily basis let alone within our lifetime; in the air you breath, the chemical based products you may be using, the non-organic hygiene products you might be using, and if you're not eating organic foods then the foods you eat, just to name a few.

Each of us, for whatever reason, handle these toxins differently and as a result requires different nutrients at different levels and with different levels of urgency. Kineliology gives us the ability to let our bodies tell us what is wrong and what we really need, not what some multivitamin manufacturer says.

Sure we are all human and our bodies need the same core nutrients to survive, and maybe in a perfect world with no outside interference we would all need or not need the same things. The truth is though when it comes to this "outside interference" it is not a perfect world and we each, as individuals are exposed to different toxins at different levels and our bodies handle them differently.

So be smart and listen to what your body tells you!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Chicken with Mushroom and Artichoke

3 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts (pound them even)
1 tsp salt
1 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp pepper
2 1/2 tbsp of olive oil
1 can of artichokes, drained
1/4 lb of fresh mushrooms, sliced
3 garlic cloves chopped
3 tbsp whole grain flour
2/3 cup chicken broth
3 tbsp dry sherry
1 tbsp of lemon juice

Sprinkle chicken with salt, paprika and pepper. Brown in skillet with half the olive oil over low heat. Transfer chicken to casserole dish, reserve drippings in skillet. Brown artichoke hearts in pan, then arrange around chicken in casserole, set aside.

Add remaining olive oil to drippings, add mushrooms and garlic, saute for 5 minutes. Stir flour into mushrooms and garlic, gradually add chicken broth, sherry and lemon juice mixing well.

Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until thickened (about 5 minutes). Pour over chicken and artichokes in casserole. Cover and bake at 375 for 30 mins


Guacamole Burger

If you like guacamole and you like burgers, then try this one!

1 Organic Grass Fed Burger

Goat Cheese (Mozzarella or Cheddar works well); sliced thin

Guacamole: (click he for tips on preparing an avocado)

1 Organic Avocado
3 Organic Cloves of Garlic (crushed)
1 Organic Jalapeno (minced)

Slice, de-pit, and peal the avocado, and place in a bowl. Add the garlic and jalapeno, and mash together using a potato masher.

Cook the burger on the grill (~4min per side or until proper temp is reached for medium rare beef). Once the burger is flipped with about 2min remaining on second side, cover the top of the burger with the guacamole and then layer with the goat cheese.

Enjoy with your favorite Organic side dish!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Allergy Alert Cards

I have been working on making an Allergy Alert Card to help simplify, as well make safer and less stressful, each dining out experience. I envisioned something that could be useful for any dining occasion, whether you're out at a restaurant, at a friends or family members house, or even something that could be useful for school cafeterias. I have found similar products online, but none with the presentation I was looking for; simple, informative, and to the point.

This was brought on by my own dining experiences, and the confusion lack of awareness and lack of creativity my Dairy and Soy Allergies always seem to bring out in those who prepare my food. If it wasn't the "just a little butter is ok... right?", then it was "dairy allergy... so you can't have eggs?", or the dreaded "plain piece of chicken"; either way it often resulted in a dining disaster.

Last week I was able to try out my Allergy Alert Cards, and with great success I might add. The first time was at an Italian restaurant; this one was nothing special because the meal I ordered was basically soy and dairy free by selection, but the card definitely cleared up any doubts in the kitchen.

The second time however was at a wedding (cocktail hour and reception), which would normally prove to be very challenging due to the pre-selected menu, and this is where my allergy alert cards really shined. During the cocktail hour the only safe food on display was the vegetable crudites, which I of course enjoyed, but as most allergy sufferers can relate my food allergies left me feeling a bit short changed. I thought there was a glimmer of hope at the carving station, but it turns out the turkey was basted with vegetable oil (the soy allergy sufferers nemesis). So my wife handed the server my card, explained my allergy situation, and asked him if he could see what they could do for me in the kitchen. With no other help needed, I was presented with a plate of roasted veggies in a very tasty balsamic vinaigrette sauce. I thought this was very creative on the part of the kitchen to come up with something on the fly using just the information on the card as a guide.

I feel my allergy alert cards were/are a great success and I hope they will prove to be for others as well.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

The Fountain of Youth

The fountain of youth... it's been dreamed up, written about, and sought after by countless for many years, but does this mythological place dreams really exist?

Can scientists make fantasy into reality? Or better yet can some large company package this science experiment into some appealing pill or cream and market these products of false hopes as the real deal?

Obviously the answer is yes, just look down the beauty aisle or pharmacy aisle of any grocery/convenience store... they wouldn't sell if they didn't have any takers.

What if the fountain of youth wasn't a mystical place at all, but rather something more tangible.

What if it's actually something our bodies cry out for, and for those who hear the cries and choose to answer them have been benefiting from for years.

What if you can find this "fountain of youth" in a place as common as your local grocery store, or health food store, or local farm stand.

What if this "fountain of youth" had another name, something we've all heard before.

The only true way to stay feel and look healthy (or young) is to actually be healthy, and the only way to achieve this is through a healthy diet.

Eat fresh organic whole foods, grass fed meets, and free grazed poultry and eggs instead of that Big- Mac bag-of-chips energy drink frozen dinner diet you're use to, and your "youth" might not be so un-obtainable!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Omega-3: What They're Not Telling You

We've all heard from one source or another, the importance of Omega-3 fatty acid in the diet, either through supplementation or eating foods rich in Omega-3. Both are viable sources and both should be considered, but what I feel the "experts" fail to mention is that certain foods (when chosen correctly) can actually be a source of Omega-3 within the diet but more importantly when the wrong kinds are eaten are actually high in Omega-6 (the fatty acid that promotes inflammation within the body) .

We've all heard from one source or another the benefits of Omega-3 fatty acid in the diet, primarily it's amazing ability to combat and even inhibit inflammation within the body. Once again though I feel the "experts" have failed to show how the dots have been connected between the dramatic rise in the numbers of those who suffer from chronic inflammation (be it heart disease, arthritis, tendinitis, etc.) and the increasingly lopsided ratio of Omega-3 and Omega-6 within our diets and as a result within our bodies.

The "experts" will tell you to increase your intake of fish (wild caught of course), nuts, seeds, etc., but when is the last time you had someone tell you that when you eat NONE grass fed beef and NONE free grazed poultry and eggs you are actually increasing the levels of Omega-6 in your diet and in turn causing inflammation; or at least giving it a very hospitable environment.

Feed lot cows fed diets consisting of corn (high in Omega-6) instead of grass as nature intended (and go figure, high in Omega-3) along with mass-produced (or raised) chickens fed you guessed it corn and soy instead of allowing them to be nature's clean-up crew following behind the grass eaters of the animal world, once again promoting an Omega-6 rich diet, are the real cause of this nation-wide Omega-3 shortage.

Choose grass fed free grazed animals, and fix this Omega-3 problem once and for all!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Living Healthy is a Lifestyle Change

For most, following a healthy path is a major lifestyle change, and I think that really frightens people. Evolution has conditioned us to follow the path of least resistance when faced with problems, but sometimes this path is only the "path of least resistance" when looked at from a hear-and-now point of view.

"Resistance" can be loosely defined as any sort of opposition; whether it's an objects ability to oppose the flow of electricity, or a secret organization working as an opposition force against a greater authority, or an objects ability to oppose motion (better known as friction). Resistance as it would have related to primitive man could possibly be described as danger, and therefore the path of least resistance would be the path that put man in the least amount of danger; most likely the other direction.

Although we can relate that definition to modern people, I would like to offer another possible definition... change. Change equals work, and to most people work is NOT the path of least resistance. So if we look at resistance as it relates to our state of health, we can say that the path of least resistance is that of which involves the least amount of work; or change. So if someone has an ache or pain or any other health related condition and is confronted with two options; "take this pill" or start living healthy (i.e. a healthy diet), guess which one most people will choose?

Based on the epidemic of chronic health conditions in this country, I think the question answers itself. We (as a people) want instant relief with little to no effort required on our part, and without bearing the consequences of our actions. A natural approach to health and wellness does not yield instant results because fixing the cause of a problem, and the damage it has done, always takes longer than treating its symptoms; but that requires dedication work and change... resistance to our normal ways. Because it will always be easier and more convenient in the eyes of most people to continue on the unhealthy path of fast foods and processed foods consisting of highly refined sugars and flowers, artificial preservatives, additives, and chemicals, rather than a healthy diet consisting of fresh organic whole foods, the path of least resistance will remain the same; eat without consequence and take a pill to ease the pain.

Choose the path you perceive as resistance when it comes to a healthy lifestyle; choose to be healthy. Once you make the initial lifestyle change you will be amazed at how natural living healthy comes, and by the very definition of natural ("effortless, arising easily") it becomes clear that the natural way is actually the path of least resistance.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Soy Free And Going Strong

I vaguely remember my last soy allergy outbreak, and that's a good thing. It's been a little over two years now since I found out about my food allergies and started this crusade to stay soy and dairy free, but for me it's more than just avoiding an allergic reaction; it's about being healthy. I've learned so much over these past few years about how the body works and how we abuse it with unhealthy diets, and that's been my driving force. I was never an unhealthy person, but I was shocked to find out how far from healthy I truly was.

We can all stand to improve our lives and you have to start somewhere, so why not put your diet on the hot seat.

If you (like most Americans) suffer from some sort of chronic pain disorder or illness, then I suggest starting with an allergy test. One simple test can check you for hundreds of possible food intolerances, and eliminating them from your diet has to be JOB 1. Now that you're not poisoning your body with allergens, it's time to rebuild that gut and ultimately your immune system. At the same time it's important to focus your diet around fresh organic whole foods, and limit your intake of processed foods.

You will be surprised, no amazed at how much healthier you will feel and will finally see for yourself the connection between an unhealthy diet and those chronic pains and illnesses that most have excepted as part of "growing older".

Remember this, if you eat shi... than expect to feel that way.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Health Care

Today's the day Obama will address the nation on repairing America's broken health care system. It's a topic that has seen many battles; how to make health care in a country that is suppose to have the best medical treatment in the world affordable for those who have it, and how to provide it to those who can't afford it.

That is a question I'll leave to the "experts" to answer since it seems they've done such a great job thus far... but I would like to comment on the "health" portion of health care. One thing you can do to make health care more affordable to you is to be proactive when it comes to your health and that of your families. People spend (waist) an enormous amount of time and money on trying to figure out how to, well to put it plainly afford the effects of a very unhealthy lifestyle, yet few want to take the time to address the real problem.

How can you make health care more affordable?

Try living a healthy lifestyle, and by that I mean one that centers around a healthy diet. Eat healthy; and I don't mean what the manufacturers of all that processed food in your cabinets and fridge market as "healthy", I mean eat fresh organic whole foods, grass fed meets, free grazed poultry and eggs, and wild caught fish. Consume a healthy diet in combination with the right supplements, and you would be surprised how that truck load of hard earned money that's thrown at health care every year is reduced; say goodbye to colds, to chronic pains, and to many of the conditions that plague this country.

The healthier you are the less medical attention you will need! Almost sounds too easy to be true.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Pasta With a Tasty Twist

By now I hope you've come to realize the importance of fresh organic whole foods and have done your best to limit your intake of highly refined overly processed foods. That doesn't mean your favorite pasta dish has to be banned from your kitchen, it simply means you should limit how often it makes an appearance and when it does do your best to keep it healthy.

If you using organic whole grain pastas and making your own organic sauces (when possible) than your on the right track. The only thing that's left is to be creative...

Try butternut squash (or any variety of squash) sauce instead of the typical red sauce for your next pasta night, and put a tasty healthy twist on an old favorite.

1 Organic Squash (pealed, seeds removed, cubed)
2 Cloves Organic Garlic (minced)
Fresh organic parsley
Salt/Pepper to taste
1 tbsp Organic Olive Oil

Steam the squash until it is soft, and then mash in a bowl. While your pasta is boiling heat up the oil in a medium size pan over a low/medium flame and lightly brown the garlic (30sec to 1 min). Then add the squash, parsley, salt and pepper, mix together well over a low flame and serve.

When choosing a squash (as with all vegetables) try to go with what's in season to insure your getting the healthiest best tasting food possible, and with that said and pumpkin season almost upon us try substituting pumpkin for the squash.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Curry Lemon Sauce

If you like spicy as much as my wife and I, and are looking for a tasty sauce for your next fish dish then look no further.

I found this one in a Men's Health magazine some time ago (modified it a bit) and have used it many times. The original recipe calls for curry paste (green or red works, but i prefer green for this), lime juice, and coconut milk. My take is slightly different, but equally as good... if not better!

I replace the lime juice with freshly squeezed lemon juice, and I like to squeeze it directly onto the fillets (both sides) prior to adding the sauce. Then in a small glass container I mix a few table spoons of green curry paste and at least a teaspoon of organic coconut oil (rather than coconut milk), and place it in a pot with water (enough to come up about half way on the glass container) and heat up until the oil and sauce can be mixed together into a nice paste. Then I rub the paste on both sides of the fillets and grill (or pan fry) to perfection.

It tastes great and you get the health benefits of the curry at the same time.


Thursday, September 3, 2009

Mercury Poisoning

Mercury poisoning is a serious issue and affects millions of people. Mercury is said to be the "most toxic non-radioactive element on the planet", and yet we live with it in our mouths in the form of metal fillings, we've injected ourselves and our children with it (was used as a preservative in vaccines), we consume it at a higher level when eating farm raised fish, and continue to pollute our atmosphere with hundreds of tons of it every year.

Only years persistent lobbying by concerned parents and doctors would eventually lead to the use of it in vaccines to be mostly eliminated, and this has not come without a fight.

Heavy metal poisoning (such as mercury) has been linked to many disorders, and the medical community needs to address this as the epidemic it has become.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Oh How Far We've Come

Three years ago I thought I was healthy. I didn't smoke, I didn't drink excessively, I went to the gym although I had many aches and pains (mainly tendinitis), I never took drugs although I depended on over the counter pain killers and anti-inflammatories to ease the pain (as most Americans do), and I ate healthy or so I thought although my diet consisted of mostly non- organic heavily processed foods. Hey, the box or bag or container screamed healthy with misguided terms like "natural" and "low fat" and "vitamin enriched" and "whole grains"... three years ago I thought I was healthy.

Today I am truly a different person. Sure I still don't smoke or drink excessively, but that's where the similarities end. I now live for the most part pain free; I haven't taken any prescription or over-the-counter drugs in over two years, and any pains I do get I treat successfully using natural techniques and remedies. And today I can honestly say that I eat healthy; my diet consists of fresh organic produce, organic whole grains, grass fed beef and free-grazed chicken and eggs, wild caught fish, and organic minimally processed foods with as few ingredients as possible, no additives, no preservatives and no dyes and colorings. I use only organic soaps and shampoos as well as eco friendly biodegradable non-toxic household chemicals.

Three years ago I thought I was healthy... Today I am!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Protect Yourself Against Your Prescriptions

I've mentioned this before, but a recent incident with my dog (you heard correctly) has warranted a revisiting of this topic.

I cannot stress enough the importance of supplementing any prescription drug (if you must take it) with supplements that will boost your immune system and strengthen the gut; and after reading this you will see why.

My story begins about a month ago when our dog (Cowboy) developed a bout of separation anxiety following us moving into a new home. After trying everything the experts recommended, and to prevent him from doing any further damage to the area rugs as well as himself, we gave in and brought him to the vet. Big shocker, they prescribed a pill... so we started giving him this anti-anxiety medication.

You have to understand that for me it is difficult to have to give him this (or any) pill because I believe so strongly in natural healing and haven't taken any over-the-counter or prescription drugs in over two years, but it is my wife's baby first and foremost.

As the story continues, we fast forward about three weeks... He developed some sort of "blood blister" under the skin on his knee, which apparently was caused by a pin left behind during knee surgery three years prior. Because it was an open wound that was not healing as quickly as we would have liked, and because he lives outside during the day while my wife and I are at work, and because we happened to be at the vets office anyway for his yearly check-up, the Doc suggested, you guessed it, another prescription.

That makes two prescriptions for those keeping score at home.

Finally less than a week from his most recent vet visit, he seemed to come down with a bit of the kennel cough; which he most likely got at the vet during his visit. So once again the vet prescribed another drug, which made three prescriptions for the poor 35lb animal's body to deal with.

It took no time at all for his stool to become loose and discolored, his appetite to drop, and for him to develop what appeared to be a rash on his skin that was itching him profusely. After a little research, the consensus seemed to be yeast build up do to little or no friendly bacteria left in his body.

As you probably know most prescriptions (especially if you're on them for an extended period of time) do damage to your gut by wiping out the friendly bacteria that your body needs to stay healthy. This can cause yeast "Candidiasis" to grow and flourish inside you which can cause a laundry list of problems, so to prevent this you must take some sort of probiotic (friendly bacteria) to replenish your system.

Strengthening your immune system is also very important, and this can be done (at the very least) by taking a quality vitamin C supplement. Refer to my previous post for more good immune system support.

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