Chocolate Chip Cashew Butter Cookies

Chocolate Chip Cashew Butter Cookies

Difficulty: Easy
Yield: about 2 dozen

1 cup cashew butter
1 egg (add a second one if the dough looks too dry)
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1 teaspoon baking soda
¼ cup chocolate chips
¼ cup raisins or dried cranberries

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl. Mix well.
Prepare two large cookie sheets with parchment paper.
Place one-tablespoon balls of dough onto the prepared sheets, one inch apart. Flatten out the balls with a spoon or your hand.
Bake in preheated oven about 10 minutes. Let cool for a less crumbly cookie.

Posted in Baking, Dairy Free | 3 Comments

Recipe: Tuna Summer Salad

Tuna Summer Salad

Difficulty: Easy
Yield: about 3-3½ cups

1 cup cooked rice noodles or spaghetti
1 can tuna, drained
¼ cup chopped dill pickles
1 Tablespoon pickle juice
2 Tablespoons chopped celery
1 medium carrot, peeled and shredded
1 Tablespoon chopped onion
1/3 cup mayonnaise

Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl and mix well.
Serve chilled with chips, crackers, or bread.

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Potassium

Potassium is a mineral that is essential for healthy living. Potassium keeps the kidneys, heart and other organs working properly. Potassium is essential for getting proper nutrients into a cell, and can even prevent kidney stones, . A potassium deficiency can lead to health issues such as increased blood pressure, stroke, heart disease, digestive issues, certain cancers, infertility and arthritis. Potassium also keeps the muscles and nerves functioning well, and keeps blood sugar in check.
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There are many food sources for potassium such as potatoes, avocados, tomatoes, spinach, legumes, organ meats, fish, nuts, bananas, oranges(and orange juice), strawberries, and dried fruits such as raisins, apricots, dates, prunes. Link: Below is good chart to keep on hand.

Food                                    Amount          Potassium (mg)
per amount
Beet greens, cooked             ½ cup                   650
Avocado                                  1                             975
Baked potato w/ skin           1 medium             919
Black beans, cooked             ½ cup                   322
Banana                                    1 small                  362
Salmon, canned                     3 oz.                      286
Carrots, baby, raw                 10                          320
Spinach, cooked, frozen       ½ cup                  309
Broccoli, cooked, fresh         ½ cup                  268
Cantaloupe                             1 cup                      417
Tomato, fresh                         ½ medium          146
Orange                                     1 medium             237
Yogurt, plain, low-fat            6 oz.                      398

Link:

Here’s a chart that shows how much potassium different age groups need taken from this site: Link

CHILDREN
0-6 months                             400 mg/day
7-12 months                            700 mg/day
1-3 years                               3,000 mg/day
4-8 years                              3,800 mg/day
9-13 years                             4,500 mg/day
14 years and up                   4,700 mg/day
ADULTS
18 years and up                  4,700  mg/day
Pregnant women                 4,700 mg/day
Breastfeeding women         5,100 mg/day

There are certain people to have a higher risk for potassium deficiency such as those who: use diuretics, smoke, have an eating disorder, abuse drugs and alcohol, those with digestive disorders, those who have demanding jobs, athletes. Link:
A few signs and symptoms of deficiency are: muscle weakness, fatigue, constipation, irritability, abdominal pain, cramps, confusion, abnormal heartbeat, drowsiness, paralysis.

It’s never too late to start consuming more potassium. By increasing your intake of potassium, you could experience more energy, better digestive health, and maybe even need fewer medications! Now you can’t beat that!

Thanks for stopping by and don’t forget to subscribe for full benefits!

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Something’s Fishy

Lent is almost upon us and ’tis the season for fish. Reading this article may be helpful, and will hopefully calm your fears of mercury poisoning from eating too much fish. First, let’s start with the serving size. Four ounces of fish (about the size of your palm) is an adult serving size. For a child (4-7y/o) the serving size is two ounces.

Fish is a good source of protein, vitamin D, selenium, and omega-3s. Omega-3s are heart healthy and help to lower blood pressure, triglycerides and inflammation. Omega-3s are also known to help with the development of a baby’s brain and nervous system. Eating too much of the wrong kind of fish with high levels of mercury can be dangerous. So keep reading to find out the best fish to consume, and what not to indulge in too often.

One of the biggest fears of enjoying fish on a regular basis is mercury poisoning. There are only a few fish (uncommonly consumed) that contain high levels of mercury. These are: mackerel, shark, swordfish, marlin, tilefish, orange roughy, and bigeye tuna.

Selenium, a mineral that combats mercury, is found in large amounts in fish. Most of the regularly consumed fish contains more selenium than mercury, so there’s little need to be overly concerned about mercury poisoning. Selenium improves immunity and lowers the risk of cancer with its antioxidant property. Like omega-3s, selenium lowers the risk of heart disease, decreases inflammation, and helps with healthy blood flow.

Another fear of eating fish is that it contains dioxins and PCBs. Fish is not the highest source of these toxins. Pork, Chicken, Beef (PCB, get it? Okay, just kidding.), dairy products, and vegetables have higher levels of these toxins than do fish. There is no need to worry about getting too much of these toxins from fish.

Fresh fish tastes mush better than does frozen and wild-caught is better than farm-raised. Just be sure to eat fresh fish within a couple days of buying it, and always make sure the fish does not smell of ammonia or brine, which may mean it is spoiled. If you are able to smell the fish before purchase, do so.

There are many benefits to eating fish several times a week. Fish is a low-fat source of protein, vitamins D and B2, omega-3s, calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc, and potassium. There is no need to be afraid of mercury unless you are consuming mackerel, shark, swordfish, marlin, tilefish, orange roughy, and bigeye tuna, all of which are quite high in mercury. So enjoy!

If you have any comments, questions, or concerns please don’t hesitate to contact me. I would be happy to help with recipes, cooking tips, food safety, and more! Once again, thanks for stopping by!

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RECALL ALERT!

On December 20, 2017, Aldi stores voluntarily issued a recall of several kinds of apples. This recall is effective in the North Carolina, South Carolina, Ohio, Georgia, Indiana and Kentucky Aldi stores with apples sold after December 13th. These are recalled because the apples were potentially contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes, bacteria that kills hundreds of people each year. Those most at risk are newborns, pregnant women, elderly, and those with compromised immune systems. Jack Brown Produce, also issuing a recall, reports that these apples were branded “Apple Ridge” in various stores throughout Georgia, Ohio, Michigan, Missouri and Indiana beginning on December 11th (Moody, Aaron, 2017).

The following list is taken from this site: ALDI recalls apples with possible Listeria contamination.

Details on the recalled ALDI products are as follows:
▪ Honeycrisp apples, 2-pound bag: UPC code: 079954000015.
▪ Honeycrisp apples, unpackaged.
▪ Fuji, Gala, Golden Delicious apples, 3-pound bag: UPC codes 033383087139, 03338308689, 033383081175.
The Jack Brown Produce recall also includes the following Apple Ridge brand products:
▪ Honeycrisp apples in 2-pound clear plastic bags.
▪ Gala, Fuji and Golden Delicious apples in 3-pound clear plastic bags.
▪ Fuji and Gala apples in 5-pound red-netted mesh bags.
▪ Gala, Fuji and Honeycrisp apples that were tray-packed/individually sold.
The recalled products can be identified by lot numbers printed on bag or product labels and/or closure clips:
Fuji: NOI 163, 165, 167, 169, 174.
Honeycrisp: NOI 159, 160, 173.
Golden Delicious: NOI 168.
Gala: NOI 164, 166.

Customers with affected products are urged to destroy them. For a full refund or questions, contact Jack Brown Produce at 616-887-9568 and ask for Lisa Ingalls (Moody, Aaron, 2017).

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Dairy-Free and Gluten-Free Holiday Baking

Attention gluten and dairy avoiders! Baking season is upon us! Here is a great recipe for dairy-free, gluten-free muffins. I have baked several variations of this recipe and provide you with my best version. Feel free to leave a comment or ask a question. Please provide feedback on how you liked this recipe or changes you made!

Gluten-Free and Dairy-Free Banana (or Pumpkin) Muffins
Yield: 12 Muffins

1 Cup mashed ripe bananas or pumpkin puree; or ½ cup of each
2 large eggs
* * * Recipe Details Available to Premium Members * * *

Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix well. There is no need to worry about over-mixing since there isn’t any gluten to over-activate!

Prepare 12 muffin cups with foil liners.
Divide the muffin dough among the cups.

Bake 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the muffins comes out clean.

Enjoy warm or cooled!

Posted in Baking, Dairy Free, Gluten-Free | 1 Comment

Broccoli

Broccoli is only one of many crucifer vegetables. Broccoli has been popular since the ancient Roman times. There are many benefits to broccoli like reducing the risk of breast cancer, relieving some symptoms of Autism, and detoxifying the body. Login to access links

Broccoli is best consumed in the raw instead of cooked. The process of cooking eliminates the many vitamins and minerals that are beneficial to the body. Sulforaphane is one beneficial compound found is many crucifer vegetables, but highest in broccoli, and especially broccoli sprouts. Link. Sulforaphane temporally decreases relationship issues in those with autism. Link.

Broccoli contains high amounts of minerals such as selenium, calcium, potassium, magnesium and iron, and vitamins C, A, B-6, making it a great health food. With more vitamin C than a single orange and more Vitamin A than milk, broccoli is great for immune health. The fiber content also helps with regularity and can even be beneficial to diabetics at keeping their blood sugar in check Link . 100 grams of broccoli has 2.6 grams of fiber, 2.8 grams of protein, and a whopping 155% of the daily recommendations for vitamin C. Link.

Broccoli is best eaten raw and can be added into salads or served on a veggie tray with a low-fat dip. Broccoli is also delicious when it is cooked or roasted. Next time you’re at the grocery, don’t forget to pick up the broccoli and enjoy a nutrient dense veggie snack or meal!

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Posted in Nutrients, Paleo Diet, Vegetables, Vitamins and Minerals, Whole30 | Leave a comment

Stinging Nettle

Have you ever heard of “stinging nettle?” Stinging nettle (Urtica dioica) is a plant that holds a variety of benefits to health and well-being. It is most often seen in teas, but can be in tablet form or even in plant form. The plant has heart shaped leaves with yellow and pink flowers. Tiny hairs cover the stems. These hairs contain chemical that irritate that skin and cause pain and swelling. Interestingly enough, if the area on the body is already painful, stinging nettle can alleviate the pain.

Stinging nettle has been used to treat a variety of aliments such as stomach ulcers, muscle and join pain (including arthritis and gout), urinary complaints and allergies. Some studies show that simply applying the leaves to the painful area will alleviate the pain by bringing down the inflammation. Stinging nettle can also help to stop or decrease bleeding.
Stinging nettle reduces seasonal allergies and hay fever by inhibiting the histamine. Doctors have recommended that the herb be taken before the allergy season starts.

Stinging nettle can be consumed in teas, and tablets, or in cooked forms. The oils and/or extracts can also be applied to the skin. When the leaves are cooked dried or soaked in water the stinging property is removed. https://draxe.com/stinging-nettle/. When you first start experimenting with stinging nettle products start off with small doses. Larger doses can be irritating, and you may discover that you are allergic to this plant. Cooked stinging nettle tastes like a mix between spinach and cucumber (hmm, not too sure that sounds pleasant). Stinging nettle also contains vitamins A, C, and K, as well as iron and protein. Sounds like an ingredient for a morning smoothie or a workout shake.

Stinging nettle can interfere with blood thinner medication because it contains a fair amount of vitamin K. This plant can also interfere with diabetic medication. If you are taking any medicines talk to your doctor before experimenting with stinging nettle. Taking stinging nettle (tablet form) with food is a good idea so as to have a lower risk of irritation. The cooked leaf can be added to salads, stews, soups, or shakes and smoothies.

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Clary Sage Essential Oil–Update

Essential oils seem to be a popular interest these days. Good quality essential oils are fairly expensive, but they do have benefits to health and well-being. While I have been experimenting with essential oils for a couple years, I am no expert. To learn more about the real benefits of individual oils, I decided to do a post on just one essential oil—Clary Sage—a recent investment of mine. Here is what I found.

First of all, this oil is from the herb Clary sage, which is very similar to the typical garden and kitchen sage. Clary sage oil is known to relieve various eye conditions and to improve one’s vision, hence the name “Clary.” This oil does not need to be consumed, but rather is used topically or aromatically.

Clary sage oil has also been long used as a painkiller as it can relieve headaches, stiff muscles and cramps, as well as menstrual complaints (cramps, hot flashes, etc) and other spasms. Clary sage is also great for the hair and skin, as it can stimulate hair growth, control dandruff, preventing hair loss, and controls oil production. Clary sage also offers antibiotic benefits . . In a study done in 2012 on 61 Polish individuals—41 males, 20 females; ages 56-63—Clary sage was shown to treat infections that were resistant to antibiotic medication.

Not only that, but this amazing herb benefits one’s mood as well. Struggling with low self-esteem, depression, or feeling a little hopeless or anxious? Well chin up. You may want to give Clary sage essential oil a try! It even helps relieve dizziness.

Clary sage oil is great for digestion too as it can stimulate the digestive juices and keeping indigestion down. This in turn causes there to be less stomach discomfort and healthier digestion. Clary sage essential oil helps relieve and prevent bloating and intestinal/stomach gas. This oil just has to be applied to the stomach and abdomen. .

Essential oils are strong and should not be used by themselves. For topical use, dilute them with carrier oil such as olive or coconut oil. Do not use any essential oil directly on the eyes.

If you need help choosing a good quality essential oil, don’t hesitate to contact me. Also, if you need help with dilution ratios, shoot me an email or comment, talk to your doctor, or look in an essential oil handbook.

I am not a doctor. If you have a medical condition, you should talk to your doctor. As always, do not use essential oils if you are allergic.

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Ghee

Interested in a dairy-free butter? Well you’ve come to the right place! Dairy free butter, aka, ghee, is “clarified butter.” Ghee has been removed of most the casein, whey, galactose and lactose. Ghee is 99.3% butter fat, while butter is 80% fat . Ghee still tastes amazing. Ghee is shelf stable for a couple months and can be refrigerated for longer. However, ghee can be fairly expensive. But why not make it at home? Patience and time are necessary, especially when you are first learning how to make this delight. Here are a couple links to ghee recipes:


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Ghee can be used in place of butter, and doesn’t leave a sugary coating to pans, or your skin. Use it like coconut or olive oil on your scalp and skin for better health! Ghee has a higher smoke point than butter, 450 degrees! Per tablespoon, compared to butter, ghee has less sodium, less sugar, and more of the fat soluble vitamins A, D, E, K, and Choline. Also, because of the short-chain fatty acid butyrate content, ghee can improve the quality of digestion, and bring down inflammation.

Feel free to contact me with questions, comments, or concerns. Or sign up to leave a comment!

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Posted in Dairy Free, Healthy Fats, Paleo Diet, Whole30 | Leave a comment