Tag Archives: tonics and superfoods

A New Year and Renewed Health

A new year and renewed health

**THESE SPECIALS HAVE NOW FINISHED**

Friends, I’d love to share with you a couple of opportunities to start the new year off with a kick-start to your health.  Take advantage of a new year to set some goals and grab hold of these resources to see you on your way.

  • The good people at Food Matters are running 3 days of FREE guided detox from 3rd to 5th Jan.  Kick start your health and join in the community for recipes, discussion, and your questions answered.
  • Harvest Your Health have decided to do a re-run of the popular October sale, in which 8,865 of these super bundles were sold.

This sale will run from 3-6 January in a 90 hour re-run, and then will be gone for good!  It’s live right now!

There are a handful of products that aren’t returning on this one, but it’s still AMAZING value at $886.78 for the whole bundle.  Here’s what you’ll find:

  • 52 ebooks
  • 5 meal plans
  • 1 private kitchen community membership
  • 3 ONLINE magazines
  • 1 ONLINE fitness plan (1 month for 1 penny)
  • 20+ discount codes

The one thing I’m excited about the most in this bundle is the resources and recipes for helping us on our wheat-free journey.  When you’re armed with recipes and resources like this, it makes the transition so much easier and your long term success in changing your diet SO much more sustainable and possible.

I’ve read most of these books, and there’s something here for everyone – whether you’re planning a baby, needing some fresh recipe inspiration, needing some guidance on children’s health, or wanting to step your wheat-free (or grain-free) living up a notch.

I encourage you to take advantage of this offer, and set some goals for the new year to move into greater health for you and your family.

cooking and preparing paleo

cooking and preparing real food

home and personal care

fertility and motherhood

inspiration

Informational

fitness

Detoxify

Intentional Simple Living

There is currently a giveaway running, with currently over $2,200 in prizes and more being added as the giveaway runs.  Make sure you ENTER HERE for an opportunity to win an i-pad, Kindles, gift cards, and much much more.

So there you have it!  Some super opportunities to boost your health and set you on a path for wellness in 2014.

I hope you’ll jump in with me!

Victoria

{This post contains my affiliate links}.

Vegetables – designed by the Creator for YOU!

Things are a little full around here at the moment, so not much time to blog or do anything else for that matter. 🙂  But I did want to share something I watched last year that I found very inspiring.

capsicums

Dr Terry Wahls was diagnosed with secondary progressive multiple sclerosis, which is said to have no cure.  She became wheelchair bound but began to study nutritional therapy and successfully cured herself of MS.

Watch this inspirational TED talk (about 18m) to see how she did it – and yes, she ate a lot of vegetables.  Here’s the same talk in 2 different places, in case you have trouble getting it to work in either:

On the subject of vegetables, here’s something that I came across some years ago on how some fruits and vegetables resemble parts of the body that they bring benefit to.  You will love this.

God’s Pharmacy – YouTube clip

Maybe you can think of some others.  Here’s a couple I came up with not mentioned in the clip above:

Ginger – resembles the stomach and digestive tract.  We know that is helps settle nausea and soothe inflammation in digestion.

ginger

Kiwifruit – I think when cut, it looks like the heart and capillaries going out from the centre.  Kiwifruit are a good source of Vitamin C, which we know is key to heart health.

kiwifruit

Banana – I found this one mentioned online: eating a banana will put a smile on your face. It contains tryptophan which converts in digestion into a neurotransmitter called serotonin, the mood regulating chemical in the brain.  Brilliant.

banana

I love how God’s fingerprints are evident in his created world.  He is the ultimate Mastermind.  I also love how I don’t have to think so hard to remember what fruit or vegetable adds what benefit to which part of my body – it is literally right in front of my eyes.

That same scripture from a recent post comes to mind again:

For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see his invisible qualities–his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God. – Romans 1:20

Sauerkraut

sauerkraut

I made this sauerkraut with purple cabbage.

Sally Fallon’s book ‘Nourishing Traditions‘ has the best write-up about the benefits of fermented vegetables and fruit that I’ve found anywhere.  I encourage you to get hold of this fantastic resource if you can.

Fermented vegetables foods should form part of your daily diet, and if you’re on the GAPS Diet they should be served with every meal.  The great thing is, they are easy to make.  You should introduce them into your diet slowly, starting with one teaspoon a day and gradually increasing, as your digestion will need to adjust to the change.  Your gut will thank you for it. 🙂  As well as the probiotic benefits, sauerkraut is also high in Vitamins A and C.

There is no need to add vinegar or any preservatives to your cabbage, as the naturally occurring lactic acid keeps your vegetables preserved as well as promoting the growth of healthy bacteria in your gut.

GAPS Diet

Traditional foods on the GAPS diet – sauerkraut, fermented carrots, eggs and unsalted butter.

Ingredients

1 medium cabbage (core removed)
1 tablespoon sea salt
4 tablespoons of liquid whey drained from homemade yoghurt (or an additional 1 tablespoon of sea salt if unavailable)

Method

1)  Finely slice cabbage.

2)  Pound with wooden hammer to release juices for about 10m.

3)  Place in mason jar and press down so the juices rise to the top.  There should be about an inch from the top of the jar.  Too much space and there will be too much oxygen and the fermenting won’t work.  Too little space and it will overflow.

4)  Cover tightly and leave in a warm place for about 3 days.  Store in the fridge.

If you are concerned as to whether it has worked, you will know by whether it smells OK or not.  The sauerkraut should be a little pungent and will taste fizzy.  If it has gone bad, you will surely know as nothing will convince you to eat it. 🙂  It should last for many months in the fridge.

For further info on sauerkraut, you might like to read this article in Natural News.

Grain-Free Granola

Grain-free granola

This is the result of an experiment today with creating a grain-free granola that my husband can take in a bag with him to work when he has to be out the door early.  I prefer to have mostly fruit breakfasts, but they are not always practical to prepare and eat unless you’re at home.

We are moving towards going without grains for a while, as they are off limits on the GAPS diet.  This resembles trail mix that has been lightly toasted and sweetened, with the walnuts and coconut being a great replacement for the texture that rolled oats normally gives.  Well I think so anyway. 🙂

Ingredients

1 cup walnuts, roughly chopped
1 cup flaked coconut
1 cup raisins
1/4 cup almonds, roughly chopped
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
1 teaspoon cinnamon (or vanilla powder)
1/4 cup coconut oil
1/4 cup raw honey

Method

1) Gently melt the honey and oil together.  Add cinnamon and dissolve.

2)  Combine other ingredients in a large oven dish.  You may like to leave the raisins out until the end, and add in once the granola has cooled.  I did it today with them in, as I felt like having them coated thoroughly with the honey and oil mix.

3)  Pour honey and oil mixture over and combine well.

4)  Bake on a medium heat (about 150 degrees Celcius) for about 45m, checking regulary and stirring to stop it burning on top.

The Nourishing Traditions way would be to use nuts and seeds that have been soaked and dried previously.  If you’re doing it this way, well done for being organised and giving your body the optimal health benefits of soaking seeds and nuts!  I haven’t been quite as organised lately with that, plus our winter power bills have already been huge without me adding dehydrating all day to it.  So this was all thrown together today on the spur of the moment.

I over-did the honey quantity a little initially, so added in some ground flax seeds halfway through the cooking time to soak up the excess liquid.  But it all turned out great, and I couldn’t resist adding a few more coconut flakes at the end.  If I had goji berries and cranberries, I would have added in a handful of those as well.

1 week later:  I made this again today but didn’t leave it until evening this time to prepare for the next day!  So I soaked the nuts and seeds and added them in as per recipe above.  All turned out well and this time it will be that little bit better on the ol’ digestive system. 🙂

[Gluten-free, Dairy-free, Grain-free]

{Linked up at Try a New Recipe Tuesday}

Chocolate Milkshake

Chocolate milkshake with website

What better way to get something healthy and yummy into your little ones than a healthy spin on an old classic.

I made these chocolate milkshakes last night for bedtime drinks with just a little less cacao and honey than usual (since I didn’t need my girls to have an evening pick-me-up right on bedtime).  You could skip the banana too if you wanted – it just makes it that little bit creamier.

Ingredients

2 cups raw milk or fresh nut milk/coconut milk
2 Tablespoons cacao powder
2 Tablespoons honey
1 small to medium banana

Method

Put all ingredients in blender and blend until smooth.  Serve immediately.

Serves 2-4 depending on your serving size.  The girls had a bottle each, and I had a medium glass full.

You might also try substituting the banana if you’d prefer not to combine bananas with other foods – try half an avocado to give a creamier texture, plus a tablespoon of chia seeds to thicken.

{GAPS Notes: cacao is not normally recommended on the GAPS Diet but some people find they can have it after they’ve been on the Diet for a while}.

[Gluten-free, Grain-free]

Sea vegetables: kelp

I’m all for finding ingredients that are economical but have heaps of bang for their buck.  Kelp is one of those great things to add into your diet, as long as you can source it from clean waters – read the label and do your research, as some brands of kelp contain high levels of arsenic!

A quick google search on kelp comes back with a number of different health benefits including the following:

  • It has over 70 minerals;
  • It’s high in iodine;
  • It’s anti-inflammatory;
  • Also contains zinc, iron, calcium, magnesium, and other trace mineral and elements that we know even less about (some of which, prior to writing this, I’ve never even heard of).
  • Soothing and cleansing effect on digestive tract.

Unlike some of the other sea vegetables, it has a mild taste so can be cleverly disguised in your children’s food with a little imagination.  You could try sprinkling it onto oven fries and adding to soups, rice, and smoothies.

I like what Natural News has this to say:

One of the main benefits of kelp is its high content of iodine which is a mineral that is essential for the correct functioning of the thyroid gland. The thyroid gland regulates metabolism. If there is not enough iodine in the diet, the thyroid is forced to work harder than it should have to, eventually becoming enlarged. This syndrome is called goiter.

Kelp is a natural and healthy alternative to salt, as it has a salty taste. It is especially important in terms of women’s health as it is rich in iron, potassium and calcium – all useful for women of all ages, during menstruation, pregnancy and for nursing mothers.

Health Post or Health House in New Zealand is a great place to purchase if you’re from around these parts.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is extracted from fresh raw apples and then fermented.  It is rich in phosphorus, pectin, potassium, magnesium, sulphur, organic sodium, chlorine, silicon, iron, copper, and many other minerals.  It also contains organic malic acid, which assists in dissolving toxins from the body due to its anti-viral, anti-bacterial & anti-fungal properties.  Although it is acidic, it leaves an alkaline residue on the body.

The scoop:

From a bit of a read in the internet today, the facts (ie. scientific evidence to back it up) are that it can help aid digestion, and can also help in the management of type 2 diabetes (by lowering glycemic index).

Here are some other benefits, based on folk remedies and the testimonies of people who’ve used it for centuries:

  • It can help with reflux, gas and associated digestive problems;
  • It assists with treating over-acidic body conditions (eg. arthritis and joint pain/stiffness);
  • It may assist in the treatment of candida/yeast infections (due to the malic acid properties);
  • Some have reported it helps to clear up skin conditions and smoothe skin.

How I buy it:

The only way of buying apple cider vinegar is in its raw, organic, unpasteurised state.  It should be a little cloudy due to the sediment, which is known as the ‘mother’.

Apparently you can buy it in capsules and tablets now, but I would recommend buying it in its living raw state – why have it dried when you can have the real thing?

How I take it:

I take a tablespoon of the vinegar with a full glass of water (and a little raw honey to balance the sour taste).  I try and remember to take it half an hour before a meal (usually breakfast).

I also use in salad dressings, mixed with olive oil or avocado oil and a little natural sweetner.

Where to buy:

Any good health store will carry Braggs Apple Cider Vinegar (about NZ $9 for 473ml).  If you’re in NZ, you might like to try the kiwi-made Waihi Bush version (500ml for NZ $7.50).  Health Post is a great online store to get this sort of thing. (NB. They aren’t paying me to say that – I’ve just purchased other things from them and their service is great!).

[Like with anything else to do with preventing and treating any condition you may have, please do your own research and consult appropriate health professionals.  I’m just a Mum that’s tried something that’s worked for me]. 🙂

Read my health disclaimer here.