Monthly Archives

November 2013

HOMEMADE BBQ SAUCE AND VEGGIE TOMATO SAUCE

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FOR THE VEGGIE TOMATO SAUCE

(Makes 3 – 28 ounce jars of sauce)

 

INGREDIENTS:

1/2 tablespoon coconut oil

3 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 sweet onion (or yellow onion)

39 ounces crushed tomatoes (1 – 25 ounce can plus 1-14 ounce can)*

2 zucchini

2 yellow squash

2 cup fresh spinach

1 – 14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes*

1/2 baked sweet potato

1/3 cup fresh basil, chopped

3 to 4 tablespoons fresh thyme, chopped

1/2 cup Vegetable (or chicken) broth

salt and pepper to taste

HOW TO PREPARE:

Steam zucchini and yellow squash until soft.

In the bowl of a food processor, blend zucchini, yellow squash, 2 cups spinach, diced tomatoes, sweet potato and herbs.

In a large pot, saute onion and garlic in 1/2 tablespoon coconut oil until soft.

Add crush tomatoes to the pot and stir to combine.

Then stir in the blended veggie tomato mixture and broth and stir to combine.

Season with salt and pepper.  Bring sauce to a simmer and use with vegetables or protein.

Makes about 3 – 28 ounce jars of sauce.  Sauce can be placed in freezer bags and frozen for later use.

FOR THE PALEO BBQ SAUCE

 (Makes about 2 cups)

 

INGREDIENTS:

1/2 tablespoon coconut oil (or even better bacon grease)

3 cloves garlic, minced

1/4 cup sweet yellow onion, finely diced

1 1/2 tablespoons Dijon Mustard

1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar

1 teaspoon coconut aminos

1 teaspoon paprika

1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1/4 teaspoon sea salt

Juice of 1 lemon

1 1/3 cup low-sodium chicken broth

1 – 7 ounce jar or can tomato paste

HOW TO PREPARE:

In a sauce pan, heat coconut oil on medium heat. Add garlic and onion, and sauté until soft and translucent.

Add mustard, apple cider vinegar, coconut aminos, paprika, cayenne pepper, and salt, and continue to sauté (about 30 seconds).

Add lemon juice, chicken broth, and tomato paste, and whisking all ingredients together until smooth.

Bring to a light boil, reduce to simmer, and slightly cover with lid. Simmer for 30-45 minutes, and let cool.

Sauce can be stored in an air tight container in refrigerator up to 1 week.

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Credits for veggie tomato sauce:

Recipe from: http://www.multiplydelicious.com/   Adapted from: http://www.whole9life.com/

Photo from: http://www.multiplydelicious.com/


Credits for paleo bbq sauce:

Recipe and photo from: http://www.multiplydelicious.com/   

Chicken Salad with Roasted Bell Peppers in Avocado Cups (SERVES: 6 – 8)

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INGREDIENTS:

4 skinless chicken breasts (about 2 pounds total)

4 bay leaves

1 quart organic low sodium chicken broth or vegetable broth (or half of each, which I did here)

2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

1/2 cup unsalted, roasted almonds, finely chopped

1/2 large red onion, diced

1/2 a bunch asparagus, roasted and diced into small pieces**

1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped

1/4 cup fresh parsley chopped

2 roasted bell peppers (red or yellow peppers), skin removed and diced (recipe below)*

salt and pepper to taste

 

FOR THE MUSTARD HERB DRESSING: 

1/3 cup fresh parsley, tightly packed

1/3 cup fresh basil, tightly packed

2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

1 tablespoon gluten-free Dijon mustard

1 teaspoon minced garlic

1/4 teaspoon sea salt

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

fresh ground pepper to taste

 

HOW TO PREPARE:

To Roast Bell Peppers:

1. Preheat oven to 45o degrees.

2. Line a baking sheet with foil and spray with coconut oil, set aside.

3. Cut the peppers in half and clean out the seeds and innards.

4. Place them on a baking sheet skin side up.

5. Bake peppers for 15 to 20 minutes. Once the skins are brownish-black, remove from the oven and immediately place the peppers in a large ziploc bag.

6. Close and let sit for 20 minutes or so (or until the peppers have time to cool and “sweat”). Once they have cooled you will be able to peel the skins right off. What you will have left is a moist, wonderfully cooked pepper. Yummy!

To roast asparagus:

1. Toss asaragus in a little olive oil and season with a little salt and pepper.

2. Roast in the 450 degree oven for 5-10 minutes, depending on size of asparagus, while bell peppers roast.

3. Remove and allow to cool before cutting into small pieces.

For Chicken Salad:

1. Put the bay leaves and the chicken broth in a large pot with a lid and bring stock to a simmer.  Add the chicken breasts to the pot.  Return the broth to a simmer.  Cover the pot.  Turn off the heat.  Let the chicken steep in the stock for 30 minutes to an hour.

2. While the chicken is cooking, chop the other ingredients – garlic, almonds, onion, asparagus, basil, parsley, roasted bell peppers – and add to a large bowl.  Sprinkle with a little salt and pepper.

3. When the chicken breasts are cooked, remove them from the broth and let them cool.  When they are cool enough to handle, shred the chicken breasts into bite-size pieces by hand.  Mix the chicken pieces in with the rest of the ingredients.

To Make Dressing:

1. In the bowl of a food processor combine parsley, basil, apple cider vinegar, mustard, garlic, and salt.  While food processor is running slowly add olive oil in a small drizzle.  You may have to stop the food processor to scrape the sides.  You want the mixture to come to a liquid consistency.  Add fresh ground pepper to taste.

2. Add dressing to chicken salad and toss to combine.

3. Serve chilled or at room temperature.  Or inside a halved avocado.  Take an avocado, remove pit, and place chicken salad in the inside.

 

chicken_salad

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Credit:

Recipe and photo from: http://www.multiplydelicious.com/

Maduro Beef Picadillo (Serves: 2)

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INGREDIENTS:

1 lb Grass-Fed Beef

2 Maduros, sliced and baked, then chopped

1/2 cup Raisins

1 cup Green Olives

Salt/Pepper to taste

1 tablespoon Coconut Oil

HOW TO PREPARE:

1. In a pan, add the beef and maduros along with the coconut oil and cook on medium heat.

2. Stir regularly until the beef is mostly browned, with only a little bit of redness to it.

3. As soon as the beef is mostly browned, add the olives and raisins, and turn the heat up to medium-high.

4. Stir this constantly, cooking for another minute or so, until all the beef has browned.

5. Serve.

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Credits:

Recipe from: http://urbanpaleochef.com By:Lucas Root

Photo Courtesy of: http://urbanpaleochef.com

Asian Broccoli Slaw

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INGREDIENTS:

broccoli_slaw1

 

1/2 small red cabbage

4 cups broccoli, grated

2 green onion

 

broccoli_slaw2

HOW TO PREPARE:

1. Thinly slice 1/2 of red cabbage using a mandoline or sharp knife.

2. Using a grater or food processor, grate broccoli to uniform small chunks.

3. Chop green onions into 1/4-inch slices.

4. Toss everything together and make dressing.

 

FOR THE SESAME GINGER DRESSING: 

1/2 tablespoon garlic, minced

1/2 tablespoon ginger, minced

2 tablespoon toasted sesame oil

2 tablespoon coconut aminos

2 teaspoon sesame seeds

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes

 

HOW TO PREPARE:

1. Mince garlic and ginger.

2. Combine sesame oil, coconut animos, garlic, ginger, sesame seeds, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes in a small bowl.

3. Whisk all ingredients together.

4. Pour over broccoli slaw and toss to combine.

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Credit:

Recipe from: http://www.multiplydelicious.com  By: Make it Paleo by Bill Stanley and Hayley Mason

Photo from: http://www.multiplydelicious.com

How To Deal With Stress HEALTH And Anxiety Naturally

By | Articles, featured : magazine, Healthy Living, Mindset | No Comments

S.T.R.E.S.S

Stress can be seen as one of the first contributing causes of most diseases. Research continues to link stress to more and more symptoms and diseases, both acute and chronic.

Stress is inevitable in today’s world and of course we need a certain amount to function.

The key is to be able to manage our level of stress.

What is stress ? It is our reaction to our external environment as well as our inner thoughts and feelings. Stress in essence is our body’s natural response to dangers, the “fight or flight” mechanisms – the body’s preparedness to do battle or flee from danger.

Stress in today’s world is mainly a result of continuous high demands that are imposed on us by work, family, and lifestyle, or that we impose upon ourselves through our desire to accomplish.

Mild stress acts as a useful motivation for activity and productivity. But when the stresses in our life are too extreme or too many, this may result in all kinds of problems.

Long-term stress is dangerous. A state of continual stress eventually wears the body out. Because of its effect on immune response, stress increases susceptibility to illness and slows healing.

Please realize that in most cases of stress, it is not the situations or incidents themselves, rather real stress comes from the way we react to them. Learning to create healthy mental attitudes and finding positive outlets for our stress is a very important for our long-term health and wellbeing.  

“Not everything that is faced can be changed; but nothing can be changed until it is faced.” – James Baldwin

 

Natural Stress Management Recommendations

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  • Eat a diet of 50 to 75 percent raw foods. Fresh fruits and vegetables not only supply valuable vitamins and minerals, but are rich in compounds called flavonoids, many of which scavenge and neutralise dangerous free radicals.
  • Avoid processed foods and all foods that create stress on the system, such as artificial sweeteners, carbonated soft drinks, chocolate, eggs, fried foods, junk foods, pork, red meat, sugar, white flour products, foods containing preservatives or heavy spices, and chips and similar snack foods.
  • Limit your intake of caffeine. Caffeine contributes to nervousness and can disrupt sleep patterns.
  • Avoid alcohol, tobacco, and mood-altering drugs. While these substances may offer temporary relief from stress, they do nothing to really address the problem and they are harmful to your health. The stress will still be there the next day…
  • Practice Deep Breathing.- This can be done when facing a stressful situation – at home, at work, in your car, or elsewhere. Holding your breath is also good for relieving stress. Inhale deeply with your mouth closed, hold your breath for a few seconds (do not wait until you are uncomfortable), then exhale slowly through your mouth, with your tongue placed at the top of your teeth, next to the gum line. Do this four or five times, or until tension passes.
  • Monitor your internal conversations. The way we talk to ourselves has a lot to do with how we feel about ourselves and our environments. Telling yourself things like “I should be able to handle this better, “  only adds to the stressfulness of situations and does nothing to resolve them.
  • Take a day off ! That’s what weekends are for. Take a drive, listen to music, go to the beach, read-  whatever you find relaxing and rewarding.
  • Avoid hassles. Identify the things that are making you feel stressed out and either eliminate them from your life or prepare yourself to cope with them.
  • Do not repress or deny your emotions. This only compounds stress. Emotions need regular venting, and unexpressed emotions are the building blocks of stress, pain and illness.Keeping strong feelings bottled up only causes them to resurface later as illness. Don’t be afraid to cry. Learning to cry can help you to manage stress. Crying can relieve anxiety and let loose bottled-up emotions.
  • Work on creating a stress-free home environment. Keep the noise level down – noise contributes to stress. Turn down the radio, stereo, television. Throw rugs and wall hangings absorb noise are good additions to décor.
  • Colour therapy – colour is another important element of your environment to consider. Certain colours are much more calming and soothing than others. Also use as much natural lighting in your home as possible. Unnatural fluorescent lighting can be aggravating.
  • Try not to take life too seriously. Learn to laugh. Read Humour books, watch comedies. Laugh with friends.
  • Have more fun. Do things that you enjoy and that help you relax.
  • Get Good Sleep: Poor sleep or sleep habits do not let your body really rest, discharge tensions, and recharge.
  • Learn relaxation exercises: These can help a great deal in reducing stress through letting go of mental stresses and experiencing moments of inner peace. This quiet, “nothing happening” space is where, I believe, the healing process begins.
  • Exercise: Regular physical exercise is one of the best ways to clear your tensions and feel good, with more energy and a better attitude toward life.
  • Develop good relationships: It is important to have friends in whom you can confide and find support. Those who love and accept you and will advise but not judge you are your true friends. It is also meaningful to be a true friend to another.
  • Experience love and satisfying sex: A primary relationship that is loving, sensual, and sexual can also be a major stress reducer. Having an understanding, accepting, and warm partner to receive your hardworking body and mind can be the best therapy available. Often an intense relationship can also be quite stressful. It is important to find a balance in all you do, in each endeavor and in your life as a whole.
  • Change perceptions and attitudes: When ideas or views are not serving you, it is wise to examine and adapt them. It is important to learn to respond to life’s situations and not react. This is a true response-ability! Hanging onto frustrations, holding grudges, and accepting the victim-blame game are not in your best health interests.
  • If stress-related symptoms become chronic or recurrent, consult your doctor to rule out an underlying illness.
  • If you feel you simply cannot handle the stresses in your life, consider seeking outside help. It may be worth it to consult a qualified counselor or other practitioner who can help you to handle your problems and learn effective stress-reduction techniques. It is often enlightening and beneficial to talk with someone who can offer an objective response, whether a trusted friend or a professional counselor.

stress

HERBS

You may use these herbs individually or for a powerful anti-stress tonic, mix 1/2 teaspoon of any three of the herbs listed below and steep in 2 cups of boiling water for at least 5 minutes

Alternatively you may use essential oils. These have a wonderful effect on both the mind and body.  Essential oils that are particularly good for relieving stress include chamomile, Bergamot, sandalwood, lavender, and sweet marjoram. Add 10 – 20 drops of one or more of these oils to a warm bath and relax in the bath, or simply dab a couple of drops of oil on a tissue or handkerchief and inhale the aroma periodically during the day.

  • Catnip is an effective anti-stress herb that also causes drowsiness.
  • Chamomile is a gentle relaxant. It is a good nerve tonic, soothing to the digestive tract, and a pleasant sleep aid. Caution. Do not use this herb on an ongoing basis and avoid it completely if you are allergic to ragweed.
  • Lavender has a wonderfully relaxing effect on mind and body. It makes a good remedy for anxiety, nervousness, and physical symptoms caused by stress such as tension headaches, migraine, palpitations and insomnia.
  • Rosemary is a wonderful tonic, particularly to the heart, brain and nervous system. It has been used for anxiety, tension, exhaustion, lethargy, depression and insomnia. (Never use in early pregnancy)
  • Sage is one of the most valued herbs of antiquity. It has powerful antioxidant properties, is a tonic to the nervous system and has been used to enhance strength and vitality. (do not use in pregnancy or while breastfeeding).
  • Hops helps to ease nervousness, restlessness, and stress. It also decreases the desire for alcohol.
  • Valerian keeps the nervous system from being overwhelmed. It is also a powerful sleep aid when taken at bedtime and helps to ease stress-related headache

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ABOUT THE WRITER:

Barbara Karafokas is a qualified nutritionist, and a health, nutrition and wellness consultant. She inspires others to celebrate and love life by creating healthier eating and lifestyle habits and attitudes for life !

Barbara is also the author of  ‘The Med Life Diet’  an ingenious 12 week, step by step program, aimed at helping others develop healthy eating and healthy lifestyle habits.