Friday, April 25, 2008

a follow up - reasons to eat buckwheat

I found this on another blog and it looks interesting. I love buckwheat - a wonderful non-glutinous grain which is really a flower.

10 reasons not to eat pizza

1. Its passover...not that that has stopped me from forgetting other forbidden things...
2. White Flour has a glycemic index of 100 and turns straight to sugar in your body in a matter of minutes leading to the same crash associated with downing a coke
3. That white crust pizza is chock full of gluten which can be bad for those insensitive to it who don't even know...especially the kids.
4. Processed cheese...I don't even remember the last time that stuff saw a cow - if ever...and I can guarantee that cow was not fed grass or treated humanely and was pumped chock full of hormones and antibiotics.
5. Pepperoni is well...tasty but do you really want to think about what's in there
6. Tomato sauce that hasn't seen tomatoes...ever
7. What is that stuff in those shakers...
8. Bread topped with processed cheese and a poor excuse for watered down ketchup...would you really make this at home?
9. The grease that comes off on the napkins...yum, imagine that in your arteries...
10. Something I read online: the stomach gets different juices for digesting the food and the composition of the juice is based on what your breakfast/lunch/dinner consisted of. Since the juices produced for digesting bread and meat/cheese are so completely different, it makes it very unhealthy for your stomach to get the mixture of bread/meat and cheese in it. This could extend to why sandwiches and burgers on buns are also probably not so "healthy".

Reading this would send any normal person to scream, sweat and panic! What can I do? My kids demand pizza. I have a craving. Doesn't it make sense to feed a craving???

Possibly. If you live in New York - there is a wonderful pizza place called Cafe Viva. It is on Broadway between 97th and 98th streets. They have spelt pizza crust topped with tofu, pesto, caramalized onions, spinach and I think there might have even been squash on top. It is called the zen pizza. They have a series of whole wheat crusts as well without cheese or with at least fresh mozzarella and something that actually resembles basil. I love this place. Also there is this other great place called Slice on the east side at 2nd avenue and 74th street. They have organic crusts made from whole wheat or rice if you are gluten intolerant and they have soy cheese or cheeseless crusts covered with lovely veggies so you don't miss the greasy cheese. Try these instead or try this recipe for crust at home, toppings to follow:

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes


  • 1 and 1/2 C flax seed meal
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • Sweetener to equal about 1 Tablespoon of sugar
  • 3 Tablespoons of oil
  • 3 eggs
  • `1/2 C water


Preheat oven to 425 F.

  1. Mix dry ingredients together.
  2. Add wet ingredients, and mix very well.
  3. Let sit for about 5 minutes to thicken.
  4. Spread on pan (I put it on a silicon mat or greased parchment paper).
  5. Bake for 15-18 minutes until cooked through, then add toppings and cook until they are done.
I would top with an almond or soy cheese, medium crumbled tofu soaked in herb pesto with oregano and fresh garlic or goat cheese, fresh ricotta or mozzarella (I've even seen goat mozzarella from farms, I got some from Dove Song Dairy delivered through the Traditional Nutrition Guild) and a fresh marinara sauce made from organic tomatoes imported from Italy (they sell these at trader joes for super cheap, so no complaints on cost here!), a bit of olive oil and 6 cloves of garlic, salt and pepper. It maybe takes 20 minutes to make this sauce. If you are a little more industrious and fresh plum tomatoes are available - blanch the tomatoes to remove the skin - cut up and put in the pot, add the oil and garlic. Cook for 30-45 minutes. Real simple! This is how sauce should be. Add fresh spinach or brocolli, even some pepperoni if you must...or sausage - but make sure its good quality.

Or head to Cafe Viva or Slice. I'll see you there (after passover...just a few more days), chomping down and satisfying my craving. You'll be happier you did!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

One of my favorite Protein Sources

Hemp Seeds or Hemp Nuts are the edible portion of yes, you've guessed it the same plant that grows marijuana. No, these lovely protein rich seeds will not get you high or make you fail a drug test (although I'd probably wait 24 hours after having a smoothie just to be sure!), but they do pack quite a bit of taste, protein, essential fats and high energy per serving. They have about 11 grams of protein with an almost equal amount of fat. Adding 2-3 tablespoons to a smoothie is one of my most favorite ways to get a good vegetarian protein source at any meal!

Here are some interesting facts about hemp seeds:

Shelled hemp seeds are a delicious raw, vegan, low carb, gluten free and certified organic source of Essential Fatty Acid's and Essential Amino Acids (live plant protein). High in antioxidants such as naturally occurring chlorophyll and vitamin E complex (tocopherols & tocotrienols), 30% protein and 40% Essential Fats, our organic Hemp Nuts are whole food nutrition. See Hemp 101 for a complete nutritional profile of hemp seeds.


Sprinkle Hemp Nuts on salads, cereals, soups or try our Hempmilk recipe below to make a delicious and healthy non-dairy beverage:

Living Harvest Hempmilk

In a blender add:

  • 1/4 cup Living Harvest Hemp Nuts
  • 1 cup filtered water
  • 2 pitted dates, 1 tsp agave nectar or honey
  • Blend and Enjoy!

    Refrigerate after opening.


    100% Certified Organic Hemp Seed.

    What's in a Serving?

  • 10 grams of Protein
  • 2,000 mg of Omega-3
  • 7000 mg of Omega-6
  • 1,750 mg of Omega-9
  • Essential Vitamins and Minerals

  • For more info and to buy them online:

    Another brand I like and trust is nutiva and their hemp seeds are slightly less expensive than simple harvest. I like nutiva brand coconut oil as well and trust it as a good organic brands.

    You can also find them in any natural foods/health foods store, fairway's organic market or whole foods.

    Happy Hemping!

    Wednesday, April 23, 2008

    Couch-potato culture - interesting article on MSNBC

    Couch-potato culture may cut our lives short
    Will today's kids be the first generation to reverse U.S. longevity gains?
    By Jacqueline Stenson
    Contributing editor
    updated 9:29 a.m. ET, Wed., April. 23, 2008

    The turning point happened last summer when Sherrie Boughter's son came to her in tears about his weight — at 8 years old, he tipped the scales at 184 pounds.

    "I weigh more than Rey Mysterio," the professional wrestler, Justin told his mom. "You have to help me! You have to help me!" he pleaded.

    "We sat and cried for an hour," remembers Boughter, 41, who lives in Medina, Ohio.

    She and her husband, Brian, sought help from the Akron Children's Hospital Future Fitness Clinic, where she says the staff didn't beat around the bush. While Justin didn't have full-blown diabetes, which runs in the family, he had brown patches on the back of his neck that can be a warning sign of the disease.

    "It was the worst day of my life when I was there and they're going, 'You're killing him. You're not doing him any favors by giving him another piece of cake,'" she says. "You give this child life and you don't stop that. I brought him here and basically now I was wrecking him."

    Thanks largely to medical and public health advances, Americans are living longer than ever. The average life expectancy in 2005, the latest year for which figures are available, was nearly 78. That's up from 47 in 1900 and 68 in 1950.

    But even as the market for anti-aging pills and products has never been hotter with Americans seeking a longer life, some experts say we as a nation are doing ourselves in with our couch-potato culture of eating way too much and exercising far too little. Some health professionals even raise the controversial notion that today's generation of kids like Justin — about a third of whom are overweight or obese — may be the first to live shorter lives than their parents.

    'Like advanced aging'
    "All of the signs are pointing in the wrong direction," says Dr. Jennifer Shu, an Atlanta pediatrician and spokesperson for the American Academy of Pediatrics.

    "Young kids are getting what have traditionally been adult-type diseases — type 2 diabetes and heart disease," she says. "It's like advanced aging."

    "These kids are headed for real trouble," agrees S. Jay Olshansky, a professor of public health and a researcher at the Center on Aging at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Their parents may not be faring so well, either, he says. Two-thirds of American adults are overweight or obese.

    In 2005, Olshansky and colleagues published a paper in The New England Journal of Medicine predicting that in the coming decades, the obesity epidemic and its health consequences would reverse the upward longevity curve in America over the last century, slashing life expectancy by two to five years — more than the impact of cancer or heart disease.

    Olshansky says he's particularly concerned about obesity in children, which has tripled since 1970, because they could be dealing with diabetes, heart disease and other weight-related health problems for a longer period of time and face a greater toll.

    Predicting the future, of course, is a rather uncertain science. And researchers studying life expectancy may use different methods to go about it.

    Olshansky's team, for instance, based their forecast on the prevalence of obesity and on reports of the years of life lost from it. They estimated the effect of obesity on life expectancy for the U.S. population based on reductions in death rates that would occur if everyone who was obese would lose enough weight to have an optimal body mass index (BMI).

    But not everyone is convinced that the obesity epidemic will have such a dramatic impact — or even an effect at all — on life expectancies across the nation. Critics say dire predictions focus too much on body weight without taking the whole picture into account.

    "It's extremely unlikely that today's children will have shorter life expectancies than their parents. From everything I see, we continue to make rapid progress at extending life as a result of improvements in medical technology and personal health practices," such as smoking less, says Samuel Preston, a professor of demography at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. "Yes, we are fatter than we used to be but the implications of that have not been nearly as severe as has been popularly assumed."

    Preston, who wrote an editorial accompanying the Olshansky paper, acknowledges there is "some uncertainty" about the long-term impact of obesity on young kids. But, he says, "I haven't seen a single convincing study that relates adult deaths to childhood obesity."

    Living vs. healthy living
    Olshansky believes that, unfortunately, such hard data will come in time, once today's generation of young people grows older and begins to suffer the consequences of decades of obesity.

    "The level of frailty and disability that we're going to see in this population is going to be enormous," he says. Besides the health impact of obesity, the monetary toll will be staggering, he says, noting that annual health care costs of treating obesity and its complications, such as diabetes, already total an estimated $70 billion to $100 billion a year in America.

    Experts don't dispute that obesity, particularly morbid obesity, can lead to a host of serious and costly health problems. The question with regard to life expectancy, though, is whether those problems will be so great as to actually alter averages for the entire nation — and reverse decades of longevity gains.

    David Freedman, an epidemiologist in the division of nutrition, physical activity and obesity at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, says he believes, as Preston does, that modern medicine will blunt the impact of the obesity epidemic because heavy people who develop diabetes or heart disease can live a long time with the right medical care.

    "There are effective treatments for the complications of obesity," he says, such as medicines for high blood pressure, elevated cholesterol and excess blood sugar.

    Of course, a lifetime of pills and doctor visits isn't ideal, particularly for the young generation who may "be the most medicated in history," Freedman says. "It would be better for people not to be moderately to severely obese. I think it would be a healthier life for people. It's not a matter of longevity in my opinion, it's more a matter of living a healthy life."

    Clearly, it would be a mistake to conclude that obesity does not matter for our health or well-being, that it's without consequence to eat all the Krispy Kremes we want, throw out our sneakers and kick back and watch as our waistlines expand, says Dr. I-Min Lee, an associate professor of epidemiology and medicine at Harvard.

    "Looking at dead versus not dead is not the only option," she says.

    Lee says the confusion about the impact of extra pounds on our health relates to how much weight conveys which risks.

    A federal study published last fall in the Journal of the American Medical Association, for instance, concluded that obesity (BMI of 30 or higher) is associated with more than 112,000 excess deaths a year from heart disease in this country while both overweight (BMI of 25 to 29) and obesity together are associated with more than 61,000 excess deaths from diabetes and kidney disease. However, the study also found that being overweight but not obese was not associated with deaths from heart disease or cancer. In addition, extra weight seemed to actually protect against deaths from pneumonia, injuries and some infections.

    When looking at all the many factors that can determine life expectancy for an entire population of millions of people, it can be difficult to tease out the role of a single factor, Lee says.

    Additionally, with weight, things aren't always what they seem. Research that speaks to the benefits of exercise has suggested that it's possible to be "fit and fat" — that overweight, active people are healthier than their overweight, sedentary counterparts and possibly better off than some thinner, sedentary people. And smokers tend to be thinner than nonsmokers, but they aren't necessarily healthier, she notes.

    Another federal study that looked at the growing longevity gap between the nation's rich and poor — a whopping 4.5 year difference (79.2 years versus 74.7 years) between people living in the least and most deprived areas of the nation — cited lifestyle and various other factors that can play a role in health disparities and longevity. Among them: lack of health insurance, limited access to health care, low-paying jobs, smoking, physical inactivity, unhealthy diets and neighborhoods that lack parks and good grocery stores selling fresh fruits and veggies.

    Breaking things down even further, a study out earlier this week concluded that women living in some of the poorest counties in the country are lagging behind other women in life expectancy, primarily because of smoking, obesity and high blood pressure.

    Family fitness
    As for Sherrie Boughter and her family, they're not waiting for researchers to sort out all the possible risks of being overweight. They're banking on shaping up and slimming down to boost their odds of long, healthy lives.

    She and her husband are both overweight and take blood-pressure medicine, so they're working alongside Justin to shed pounds. And they're hoping to get Justin's 2-year-old brother off on the right foot. "We're all doing it," she says.

    Since starting the weight-loss program last September, Justin has lost 33 pounds. He meets with a trainer every other week and with a doctor every six to eight weeks. As part of his program, he exercises at a recreational center about five times a week and he's drastically cut calories.

    Take after-school snacks, for instance. "He would have a sandwich and take the bag of Doritos to the couch," says Boughter. Now Justin has a 100-calorie snack of an apple, banana or yogurt. "We don't buy Doritos anymore."

    Boughter says improving Justin's health to help him live as long as possible is a top priority, but there are other perks to his program that are evident right now.

    "I don't get the feeling that people look at him as 'the fat kid' anymore," Boughter says. "He looks taller and he moves better and he's more at ease with himself."

    © 2008 MSNBC Interactive


    Tuesday, April 22, 2008

    biking, smoothies and some recommendations for purchases at your local farmers' market

    So I'm back to biking. I've been biking in groups this season more than on my own and I notice when I am talking and chilling, I am not really biking. Today I did 14 miles. It took a long time and I did it fast, which doesn't quite make sense...but granted I had to change an inner tube and pump the thing up and deal with all the school kids and dogs in the park today...but nevertheless it somehow seemed harder than last year...or it could be I am out of shape. Anyway, I'm back to training. 5 miles running yesterday, 14 miles biking today. small goals for increasing weekly distance. I'm doing NYC bike tour on Sunday May 4. I know its 40 miles...but with all the rest stops it somehow seems less daunting then 4 or 5 loops of the park...which can also get really boring. Anyway, I survived. I've got to get up to 3 plus loops by next week and I'm planning a trip up to the cloisters soon.

    As for what I am eating to fuel these bikes rides...well is passover so there's no refined carbs. Not that I eat them anyway, but this week, there are really none. And its not like I can stomach matzah after the first seder anyway...that stuff should be outlawed. It requires two heavy duty probiotics to counter its effects and don't even get me started on the brisket.

    So my fuel of choice of course as always is smoothies. I have to go get some acai from the health food store later I didn't have any in my smoothie this morning. Instead I used unsweetened organic cranberry juice. Yes, it exists, but it sure is tart. I use really raw (that's the brand) creamy honey, bee pollen, hemp nuts, frozen cherries, frozen peaches, almond milk (I like it unsweetened) and fresh organic strawberries as well. Then I add 1 scoop of garden of earth perfect food brand greens powder with spirulina. Do I believe this is perfect food? Well, its pretty close. Ordinarily, I would just throw in some kale or collard greens and up the honey and fruit a bit perhaps adding some fresh blueberries, raspberries and/or a banana. Adding fresh greens gives me the sustained release energy like no other food and the blueberries add antioxidants. I could also use pomegranate juice or frozen pomegranate seeds if I could find them. I haven't seen them too many places.

    I love acai. Its hard to find unsweetened. I don't know why companies feel the need to take beautiful, pure food and douse it with sugar so its unrecognizable as its original form. It saddens me. I think about the fruit added to conventional yogurt and when it was actually fruit before it was boiled, bottled, and turned into a sugary mass of unrecognizable pulp. I recommend going down to your local farmers market and buying some fresh yogurt whose cultures are actually still active (yogurt cultures go inactive in 2 weeks - so all that good probiotic you are hoping to get isn't going to be delivered to you with danon), while you are there - buy some fresh organic or low spray blueberries, raspberries and/or strawberries - they will be coming into season in just a few weeks! If you can find a local beekeeper who is selling bee pollen or honey - get some of that too and now you have the fixings for my most favorite breakfast. If you must have a bit of crunch, there's probably a baker there selling some organic low sugar granola. Look for one with 5 grams of sugar or less and ask if the sugar is refined or not. Unrefined is better. Muselix is better than granola. My friend gaby at gaby's gourmet granola sells the best granola. Find her online at There are a few that are so flavorful you won't miss the sugar.

    My favorite farmers market is in union square...but there are ones all over the city. Just check online under new york greenmarkets. Nina Planck has a few real markets in greenwich village as well. Red Hook Brooklyn has a working farm and be sure to visit farm stands on the east end of long island. My favorite ones are on the north fork, where in August I will do a century bike ride (third year in a row!)...and yes, that is 100 miles. You can do it too :)

    Monday, April 21, 2008

    Blossom Restaurant and other upper west side health food favorites

    I am loving living on the upper west side. There's Gary Nulls uptown whole foods at 89th and Broadway. It has wonderful prepared foods and this new chocolate product called "Nutritious Chocolate". This product, a chocolate bar that professes to be made of kale, avocado, brocolli, pomegranates and many other fruits and veggies seems too good to be true, but does have a whopping 14 grams of sugar per serving - much more than I usually like in my 85% cacao content valhrona which only has 5 grams (but 20 grams of fat...I am really only inclined to eat 3 squares though whereas I ate half the bar of nutritious chocolate and really wanted to finish the whole bar in one sitting, but I forced myself not to). There's a wonderful prepared foods section which has a lovely red quinoa salad made with green and yellow squash. Its quite good, although a bit too tangy. It gave me an idea to remake at home with a bit less cider vinegar or whatever they used.

    I discovered a new vegan restaurant the other day which I have been meaning to try. I walked in and it reminds me a bit of Candle Cafe one of my favorite upper east side vegan haunts. Blossom (Blossom Vegan Restaurant & Cafe 466 Columbus Avenue (82nd/83rd) New York, NY 10024 (212) 875-2600) either relocated or expanded to a new location from 9th avenue. The new space is clean and stylish and the manager Jonathan was very nice when I went in to drop off some marketing materials. Diners looked extremely happy with the dishes. Looks good. Can't wait to try it. I've been trying my hand at smoothies at various west side health food stores. The store on Broadway and 96th so far is nothing special as is the health nuts a bit further down. Both make me crave gary nulls a few blocks down. I'm still mildly addicted to the acai supercharger at Jamba Juice on 86th. I hope that raspberry sherbet they add doesn't have too much sugar! I saw on the menu today at Jamba that they have new smoothies that are just fruit. If only their protein boosts weren't so super processed and they had hemp seeds, I wouldn't have to make smoothies myself anymore. I do try to mix and match from their raw materials. Strangely enough I had this variation of a green smoothie in Brooklyn near the board of ed building off court street that was fantastic albeit $6. It was some sort of co-op that was fairly interesting. I'm sure my summer travels and adventures as a substitute teacher and teaching fellow will lead me back to that store several times and I'll learn the name. Thank you now to the 2/3 train outside my doorstep, Brooklyn doesn't seem so far and difficult to get to any more.

    Anyway, there's still no place like Fairway's organic market. Though sometimes I question their products. There are an awful lot of snack and junk foods there. As I educate my clients and try to get them off regular junk food and onto healthier junk foods it just makes me realize how much junk food there still is left in our food supply and how much more work I have to do.

    I am joining the Roxbury Farm CSA later this week with a half share. I'll start getting my pick ups in June at a church on 86th and West End where the chubby bunny farm also does drop offs. Both are sold out, but the Garden of Eden farm at Ansche Chesed on 100th and West End still has a few shares left. I wish the CSA movement would figure out a way to better mobilize so more new yorkers could take advantage of this fabulous program. I have run out of $2 per dozen farm fresh eggs from Abner my farmer from Lancaster, PA. I still have butter left - at $11 a tub, I should. Its fantastic! Although I wonder how long it will keep. It is cultured, but still raw.

    Over the weekend, I had this wonderful cheese from a farmers market in the Philadelphia Main line suburbs called Brillat Savarin. It was one of the most wonderful cheeses I have ever eaten...and I've been to France and Belgium several times. I remember one cheese from Belgium that was slightly better - but this one was probably the second best I have had in my lifetime. I bought another small piece from whole foods in Columbus Circle today. Not even close to the taste of that cheese. Actually the one from Whole Foods tasted almost spoiled. I'm still alive, so I guess it wasn't, but it just didn't have any of the taste or qualities of this one I had in philly. Wonderful! I also had it with (sorry to my kosher friends!) a lovely merguez sausage from the union square farmers market, which apparently is only available on Saturdays. I have seen this guy, but I could never justify buying a pound of merguez (spicy lamb sausage) for myself. My cousin's husband who is of North African descent brought it to philly from New York where I was spending passover. It was just lovely and if I have a group of people over for brunch I intend to get some again. Yum yum and apparently not breaking the 100 mile rule!

    Thursday, April 17, 2008

    Organic Wines

    So now, not only produce is organic, but wine has gone organic. Some has even gone biodynamic. A favorite vegetarian restaurant in the east village serves a whole bunch of not only organic but also biodynamic wines. Counter is located at
    105 1st Ave, New York, NY
    (212) 982-5870
    this is between East 6th street and East 7th Streets. I have been investigating (and tasting :) ) organic wines around the city. They are somewhat hard to find...but most wine shops have at least one. Recently at a wine shop on Broadway between 94th and 95th Streets, I saw a great organic Cabernet from Heller Vineyards. The somewhat steep $17.99 price tag is a bit hard to swallow - but the wine is super tasty. The vineyard uses predatory wasps instead of pesticides for their pest control. Pretty cool.
    I've had the ladybugs merlot and chardonnay from World Wines down in Murray hill as well. Those wines in addition to being organic also contain no sulfites which is wonderful for those sensitive to sulfites like me. No red wine headache! Vintage New York restaurant in Soho and Wine Shop on Broadway near 93rd Street exclusively sells small vineyard wines produced in New York State using artisanal organic methods, although many wines are not certified organic. I have sampled several of the whites at the restaurant in Soho and they are quite exquisite.

    Tuesday, April 8, 2008

    My favorite breakfasts

    Two of my favorite easy breakfasts are smoothies and yogurt with fruit, granola and honey. I usually look for a granola that is really low in sugar. I like bear naked which has only 3g per 1/4 of a cup (please note serving size). I'll go up to 6g of sugar per 1/4 cup - but I think this is too much any more than this and you might as well just pour sugar on from the container. 4g is 1 teaspoon that is all any one person needs at any one time. I would say that I usually don't have these together unless I am running 10 miles and then I might have the yogurt first and the smoothie after - otherwise I have one or the other for breakfast on a normal day.

    yogurt granola parfait:
    1 cup of good quality whole milk (yes whole milk!) yogurt with active probiotics - brands I like: Fage (you can use their 2% or 5% b/c their whole has 20g of fat because it is strained, but a little goes a long way with their whole because you will be full), la yogurt, danon -this is PLAIN UNSWEETENED, no FRUIT!
    3 strawberries - top cut off and sliced in half
    1 handful of blueberries
    1/4 cup of granola
    if you need extra sweetness 2 tsp of good quality honey - local if possible from a beekeeper or farmers market

    In a bowl place 1 tsp of honey - add half of the yogurt. On top add half the granola, half the fruit, and top with remaining yogurt, fruit and granola. Add remaining honey to the top. Eat with spoon, enjoy!

    1 handful each - raspberries, strawberries (tops removed, cut in half) and blueberries - fresh if possible frozen ok
    6-8 ounces of almond milk (40 calories a serving, unsweetened - I prefer this to soy milk - I like blue diamond brand).
    2 tablespoons hemp seeds
    1 tablespoon flax seeds or chia seeds (these add protein and flavor as well as essential fatty acids - those omega 3s everyone is talking about and are more pure than protein powders - please stay away from those!)
    if you can find it 1/2 pack of raw acai (sold in the freezer section at whole foods or your local health food stores - a superfruit/superfood from brazil - has natural energy qualities and EFAs as well as other great vitamins and electrolytes - perfect for after workout recovery!)
    if you need 1 tsp of raw honey
    for extra fullness 1 tsp natural peanut butter
    Directions: blend all together at smoothie or blend/highest setting. If using frozen fruit - might want to add a bit more almond milk. I also sometimes use 1/4 cup pomegranate or cranberry juice (without added sugar or high fructose corn syrup, read labels!) for some extra sweetness, in this case, I would just use less almond milk.
    I've also made this with goat milk. I personally avoid cows milk due to lactose intolerance, hormones and the fact that once pasteurized all the good things in cows milk are virtually gone anyway leaving behind sugar and protein (casein) that is virtually indigestible to humans. Many people grow casein and lactose intolerant as they pass into adulthood and don't even realize it. So I do not recommend skim or low fat milk (please this is not a whole food and it is the major cause of high cholesterol in this country!) in my practice.

    5 Great Reasons to Try Quinoa

    I found this post at I thought it was interesting since I love Quinoa and I was wondering if it contributed at all to symptoms of ADHD or Candida (yeast overgrowth commonly displays ADHD symptoms in children) and it

    does not, because Quinoa is a seed and not a grain. It will cook up all nice and have the consistency of a grain, but it is a gluten free seed. I knew there was a reason I liked it so much! Check out my videos on for a great quinoa recipe. They are also on my website at

    Original post by Dr. Carmin Iadonisi


    Everyone knows that whole grains provide a whole host of health benefits including lowering heart disease risk and helping with weight maintenance.

    I love to experiment with different whole grains and by far one of my favorites is Quinoa (pronounced Keen-wa).

    Over the past few years, I would often start my day with a big bowl of hot quinoa mixed with walnuts, flaxseeds, berries and protein powder. It is one breakfast that leaves me feeling satisfied and full of energy for the rest of the day.

    Recently, my wife has become an expert at cooking quinoa and we now eat it as a side dish more often than rice or sweet potatoes.

    If you have never eaten quinoa, here are 5 reasons to add it into your diet:

    1. Price - Quinoa is inexpensive.
      One of the biggest challenges that I hear from patients is that eating healthier is often too costly. I agree that many organic foods are more expensive, but whole grains are one exception. For only $2.95 per pound- you have enough quinoa to eat several times in one week.
    2. Quinoa is gluten free
      With the rising incidence of Celiac's disease in many populations, Quinoa is one grain that contains no gluten, so it is safe for anyone with Celiac’s disease or a suspected intolerance to wheat products.
    3. Quinoa is a good source of protein.
      A ½ cup serving of dry quinoa has approximately 11 grams of protein. When cooked, one cup of quinoa is about 254 calories and has almost 9 grams of protein.
    4. Quinoa is loaded with minerals
      Quinoa contains potassium, magnesium and manganese. Of these three minerals, magnesium is one of the most common mineral deficiencies in the body. Magnesium helps regulate the absorption of calcium, energy production and aids with muscle contraction.
    5. Quinoa is easy to cook.
      One of the easiest ways to make quinoa is to take 1 cup of quinoa and boil it with 2 cups of organic chicken broth. This normally takes about 15 minutes. As the quinoa is finished, add 1 Tbsp of curry powder. Now you can sprinkle in anything you want from raisins to sautéed mushrooms and enjoy.

    Thursday, April 3, 2008

    Lazy day peanut noodle salad

    I found this great recipe at 101 It looks really yummy and easy. Makes me miss San Francisco and the legendary greens restaurant. A definite pick for anyone visiting the city by the bay.

    Lazy Day Peanut Noodle Salad Recipe

    I used asparagus in this version, but you can use any of your favorite in-season vegetables. This time of year peas, asparagus, and carrots all make great additions to the noodles and peanut sauce.

    1 8 ounce package soba noodles
    1 bunch asparagus spears, ends trimmed then cut into 1/2-inch segments

    3/4 cup creamy peanut butter
    1/4 cup (brown) rice vinegar
    2 cloves garlic, crushed and chopped
    drizzle of toasted sesame oil
    big pinch of crushed red pepper flakes
    1/4-1/2 cup hot water

    1 small bunch of spring onions or scallions, thinly sliced
    1/2 cup peanuts
    12 ounces extra-firm (organic) tofu, cut into small cubes (feel free to heat the tofu in a skillet if you like, but cold is good too)

    Big a large pot of water to a boil. Boil the soba noodles per package instructions.In the last minute or so of cooking toss in the asparagus. Drain noodles and asparagus, run under cold water for about a minute to stop cooking, and set aside.

    Make the peanut dressing by combining the peanut butter, rice vinegar, garlic, sesame oil, red pepper flakes, and a big pinch of salt in a medium bowl. Thin with hot water - the amount you'll need depends on the original consistency of your peanut butter. I like it the consistency of a thin (non-Greek) yogurt. Taste and season with a bit more salt if needed.

    Gently toss the noodles, asparagus, spring onions, peanuts, and tofu with a big splash of the dressing. I reserve a bit of each ingredient to sprinkle on top of the serving platter to make it look nice. Add more dressing a bit at a time, until the salad is dressed to your liking, reserving any extra for another use. Taste, sprinkle with more salt if needed, and enjoy!

    Serves 6 - 8.

    Wednesday, April 2, 2008

    Great Recipe I found for Spring Vegetable Stew

    I found this great recipe at :, yummy!! can't wait to make this when I unpack my in my new kitchen:

    Spring Vegetable Stew

    Makes 6 servings, about 1 cup each


    ½ ounce dried morels (see Note) or porcini mushrooms (¼ cup)
    1 cup warm water
    6 large artichokes
    1 large lemon
    1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
    4 medium leeks, white part only, cleaned and cut into ½-inch dice
    1 cup baby carrots
    12 cloves garlic, peeled
    1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh thyme or 1 teaspoon dried
    ½ cup dry white wine
    2 ½ cups reduced-sodium vegetable broth
    ½ teaspoon salt
    1 cup baby lima beans, fresh or frozen
    1 cup peas, fresh or frozen
    4 teaspoons butter
    Freshly ground pepper to taste
    ¼ cup chopped fresh chives
    ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley


    1. Cover mushrooms with warm water in a small bowl. Let stand for 30 minutes. Strain, reserving liquid. Rinse the mushrooms well under cold water; drain and chop. Strain the reserved liquid through a coffee filter or paper towel to remove any dirt.
    2. Meanwhile, fill a large bowl with water; juice the lemon and, reserving half the juice, add the rest along with the lemon halves to the water. Pull off outer leaves from an artichoke. Using a small, sharp knife, pare the artichoke down to the heart. Trim the bottom of the stem, then peel the stem. Scrape out the choke with a melon baller or spoon. Cut the heart into quarters and place in the lemon water to prevent browning. Repeat with the remaining artichokes.
    3. Heat oil in a large deep skillet or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add leeks, carrots, garlic, thyme, mushrooms and the artichoke hearts; cook, stirring often, until the vegetables start to brown, about 5 minutes. Add wine and cook until slightly reduced, 2 to 3 minutes. Add broth, salt and the reserved mushroom liquid. Cover and cook over low heat until the artichoke hearts and carrots are almost tender, 30 to 40 minutes.
    4. Stir in lima beans and peas. Increase heat to medium, cover and cook for 10 minutes more. Stir in butter and the reserved lemon juice. Season with pepper. Serve the stew in shallow bowls, garnished with chives and parsley.


    Note: Morel mushrooms are cone-shaped, with a honeycombed structure and a smoky flavor. Wild fresh morels are found at gourmet shops or specialty stores in the spring; they are sold dried year-round.

    Nutrition Information

    Per serving: 261 calories; 6 g fat (2 g sat, 2 g mono); 7 mg cholesterol; 43 g carbohydrate; 11 g protein; 14 g fiber; 568 mg sodium; 1005 mg potassium.

    Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin A (110% daily value), Vitamin C (90% dv), Folate (50% dv), Iron (30% dv), Magnesium & Potassium (29% dv), Calcium (15% dv).

    2 Carbohydrate Servings

    Top 10 healthy snacks

    Over the past few weeks all of my clients have been telling me they are doing great with meals but still struggle with snacks and healthy snack foods. Especially for the kids. So here is a top ten list of healthy snack foods that I would recommend keeping on hand so that you and the kids are not looking for cookies, candy and ice cream.

    Top Ten Healthy Snacks

    Thick unsweetened yogurt with fruit, honey and granola or bee pollen for crunch

    Carrot Sticks and Humus

    Peanut Butter and Apples

    Nuts and Dried Fruit

    Dark Chocolate (at least 70% cocoa mass) Covered Almonds

    Fruit – apple, pear, blueberries

    Fruit or Protein Smoothie

    Green Smoothie

    Steamed vegetables and Tofu

    Scrambled eggs or omelet with goat cheese and vegetables – zucchini, spinach, broccoli