Monday, June 6, 2011

Greens to the Rescue!

Finding the perfect combination of vegetables for a green juice takes a little bit of trial and error. Too much green and it might be too bitter. Too much ginger and you might start sweating. I think I may have hit upon the perfect recipe for delicious, not-too-bitter, not-too-gingery green juice.

The Perfect Green Juice
2 stalks of celery
1/2 a large cucumber, peeled
1/2 a lemon (cut off the outside skin, but leave the pith)
1 small or medium apple
3 inches ginger root
1 inch turmeric root (if your grocery store has it)
2 carrots
1 beet, top cut off (red or golden... if you do the red, or juice won't look green though!)
1/2 bunch kale

Juice 'em up and drink your fill of vitamins and minerals! Makes ~16 ounces so you can share with your sweetheart.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Fun with Veggies

When you start to love vegetables as much as I do, you get excited about things like the first real asparagus of spring, green juices, and when the cafeteria has Brussels sprouts, arugula, or artichokes (both artichokes and arugula today-- hoorah!). And then when you really love vegetables you get excited when people make fun songs about loving vegetables, like this one that my brother shared with me... enjoy!

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Allium for Joints

The Allium vegetables are as healthy as they are smelly. The Allium genus of plants include onion, garlic, leeks, shallots, and chives and the smell that they have is because of the presence of an antioxidant that includes sulfur. Their amazing health qualities include helping to prevent against heart disease (garlic in large quantities acts as a blood thinner so has a protective effect similar to taking baby aspirin), and against osteoarthritis. Check out my latest article at to read all about it!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Spring Cleaning!

New Year's resolutions may be long gone, but Spring is here and a great time for a fresh start! But what to do? There are a lot of "Detox" diets and programs out there, but I wouldn't recommend most of them. Some of them can be extreme and end up messing up your metabolism, and some just make no sense at all. Here's a simple spring cleaning plan... What is it about your diet that's difficult? Is it that you eat candy every day? Fried food? No vegetables? Whatever it is, spring is the perfect time to make the first step to overcoming them. So, pick your poison and choose a period of time where you can do the opposite. It's important though that the period of time is realistic and achievable. It could just be to not eat sweets for 1 day or a whole week. Realistic and achievable. Go for it.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Why the Plain White Potato is Awesome

The white potato is a bit of a hidden treasure. It's simple and plain. Some people might think it's like white bread or white rice and not so high in nutrients. But, it's not!

What's special about the potato is that it's got a heck of a lot of potassium and B6. Potassium is good for lowering blood pressure & keeping your muscles happy and cramp-free. B6 is needed to help the metabolism of protein and your red blood cells. In a plain, medium potato (~160 kcalories), you'll get 12% of your folate, 12% of your niacin, 27% of your B6 and 26% of your potassium for the day.

To use the potato in a healthy way, have a small or medium one as your starch for the meal - meaning have it instead of rice, pasta, bread, etc. You can bake, roast, or microwave it (make sure to poke holes with a fork in it first). Then add some steamed veggies or a salad to your plate. Also, make sure you have some protein - you might like black beans with a tablespoon of salsa.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Chickpeas Please

I was pulled out of my cooking daze by my boyfriend saying, "You're patting your chickpeas... you need help."

I burst into laughter when I looked down to notice that I was patting my chickpeas with my spatula like I might pat a puppy on the head. I can't help myself! I just love chickpeas! But there are only certain ways I like them. Not a fan of them sprouted, but love them in hummus (roasted red pepper, especially!) and... roasted. And that's how I was adoring them in my kitchen tonight.

The amazing thing about roasted chickpeas is that you can make a whole line of them just by using different spices: cinnamon if you want them sweet, or curry/coriander/turmeric if you want them savory. You could also do garlic-y chickpeas with garlic and onion powder. The list is as long as your spice rack.

And it's unbelievably easy to make.
1. Cook (or buy canned) chickpeas. If you're cooking them - soak them overnight and rinse them before cooking to help reduce the gassy effect of beans. Then cook them on medium heat with enough water so they are constantly covered until they're soft. If you're going for the canned variety, just make sure to rinse them off before using so that you take away some of that added sodium (salt).
2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
3. Put them in a bowl, and mix them with whatever spices you want to try. The chickpeas should be coated.
4. Put the chickpeas in a pan and stick them in the oven.
5. Cook for about 35 minutes - you want them to be a little crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside.

Roasted chickpeas make a great snack... you can replace your peanuts with them on Superbowl Sunday to help reduce your caloric intake that day, or if someone has a nut allergy in the house.

Nutritionally-speaking, they've got a good amount of fiber (good for satiety, lowering cholesterol, slowing the release of sugar for diabetics), folate (good for cardiovascular health, nervous system, and it's needed to make new red blood cells), manganese (helps many functions in the body), and protein.

Give it a try and let me know what your favorite spices are!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Pomegranate Power

Unlike most people I know, I grew up eating pomegranates. October would come around, and I would get excited because that meant the pomegranates were on their way. I loved opening them up to reveal hundreds of dark red tiny sacs of tart juice. I would eat the seeds individually or just chomp into them and let the juice drip down my chin like a vampire. Actually - in my family, we would always pull out some old shirt for pomegranate-eating so we didn't stain our clothes. And if you were friends with me when I was a kid - that automatically meant you were going to be introduced to pomegranates.

So, a few years ago when POM first started advertising their juice (before they started selling it), I reverted to that kid when October was drawing near. I could finally get the taste of pomegranate all year round! I knew fruits in general were good for me, high in vitamins and minerals and all that, but the research had not yet come out on just HOW good pomegranates are. Seriously - they kick butt. More flavonoids (a type of antioxidant) then the esteemed red wine (without the negative effects of alcohol like an increased risk of breast cancer), potassium (can help lower blood pressure), calcium (good for bones, muscles), and actually 2.5 grams of protein per fruit! Check out the article I wrote about the mighty pomegranate on FYI Living.