Tag Archives: nourishment

Recipe: Steak in Chocolate Chili Sauce

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This is what I just had for dinner and it combines all the best things in life: butter, chocolate, steak, tomatoes, onions and bone broth. ¬†I’m getting the goosebumps just thinking about it!

Steak in Chocolate Chili Sauce

What you’ll need:

3/4 stick of Kerrygold garlic and herb butter

1-2 onions sliced

2 cups homemade bone broth or 3 cups store bought broth

1 cup water if you’re using homemade broth

1/2 – 1 pound of beef, preferably in steak form ūüôā

1 can of diced tomatoes 

1 Tablespoon of chili seasoning

1 Tablespoon on unsweetened cocoa powder

1.  On medium heat, melt the butter and add the onions.

2.  Stir every few minutes, keeping an eye on the onions.

3.  When the onions are translucent, add the bone broth, tomatoes, water, chili and cocoa powder.

4.  Mix well.

5.  Turn down the heat and let that simmer for 15 minutes.

6.  Add the meat.

7. ¬†On low, cover and allow it to simmer for an hour. ¬†(Yep, an hour. ¬†Go wash your hair, take the dog for a walk, do your taxes, shave your chest….whatever.)

8.  Pull the steak out of the sauce and ease it onto a plate.  Cover with the sauce.

I didn’t make anything to go with it tonight. ¬†It would be lovely with some greens or roasted squash.

*You will need your fork and spoon. ¬†I thought that I’d need my knife to cut the meat but it was fork tender.

Recipe: Dessert or Meal? Cherry “Sundae”

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This is one of my favorite things to eat lately! ¬†If you follow me on Instagram or see my feed on my page of the book of face, you may have noticed. ¬†This is barely a recipe. ¬†However, I will highlight it here because the taste sensation is (to me) unreal! ¬†I’ve had it as a dessert and as a meal.¬†

Cherry “Sundae”¬†

What you’ll need (per person):

3 raw, soaked overnight and dried Brasil nuts, chopped fine (do yourself a favor and do a bunch at a time! ¬†ūüôā )

1/4-1/2 cup of frozen cherries

Handful of salted pistachios

1-2 raw egg yolks

1/2 -1 cup coconut milk

Splash of vanilla

1 pinch of sea salt

1/2 -1 tspn of pink peppercorns

Put it all together in a bowl. ¬†(See barely a recipe at all! ¬†My friend Michelle told me once that I don’t cook but rather “build” meals. ¬†Since I can’t follow a recipe, I think she’s right.)

You can stack the ingredients however you want in a bowl or parfait glass in layers or put them all together and mix well with a spoon to make it more like melted ice cream. ¬†ūüôā

Enjoy!

Easier said than done.

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Health tips are happening on my Facebook page lately. ¬†It’s just evolving in that direction. ¬†Yesterday’s was the following:

“Eat when you’re hungry. ¬†Don’t eat when you’re not.”

Yeah, groundbreaking stuff, there. I could almost hear the collective muttering, “duh” in a hushed exhale.

I concede that it’s not news. ¬†It’s not avant garde. ¬†It’s not the latest scientific breakthrough.

In my defense, however, chances are mighty, mighty good that you’re not following this old, ratty advice. ¬†Chances are pretty good that you are probably trying to find ways to eat less than you are actually hungry for a lot of the time and eating way past that full signal other times. ¬†How do I know that? ¬†What, am I made of stone? ¬†These things I speak of are things with which I am familiar, my friends.

Of course, in some part of your mind, or maybe a lot of your mind, you think that you can’t follow this little “rule” because there’s something quite wrong with you. ¬†I mean, really, it’s so easy a kid could do it. ¬†And before we cram crazy messages into their tender brains, they all do.

So if you can’t do it, what’s wrong with you?

Nothing. ¬†Absolutely nothing. ¬†That’s right. ¬†There’s nothing wrong with you.

There is probably something wrong with the nourishment that you are receiving though. ¬†I’ll bet a shiny new quarter on it, actually.

Here are the reasons that I think following this most obvious and simple guideline is so difficult:

1. ¬†We’re told that the body is not to be trusted. ¬†We get this message from early on from everywhere. ¬†So, when it’s 10:30 on a Tuesday morning and you’re still not hungry but stuff down some breakfast because you’ve been told that “it’s the most important meal of the day” or it’s 8:15 on a Monday night and your stomach is growling but you ignore it because “you’re not supposed to eat past 7”, you do this because you don’t trust your body.

2. ¬†You are malnourished. ¬†You will continue to eat until you get the nutrients that you need, not the calories that you need. ¬†This is a crucial distinction. ¬†We’ve shifted in the past 100 years to the caloric model of eating. ¬†You can eat a pint or more of low-fat ice cream during a commercial break. ¬†Just TRY and eat that much liver. ¬†And if liver is gross to you, you can change that to steak. ¬†Your body wants nutrients first and foremost. ¬†You understand this. ¬†A tablespoon of white sugar is not the same thing as a tablespoon of just about anything else. ¬†The calories may be the same but the drive to eat more will not be sated with the sugar. ¬†There are no nutrients. ¬†None. ¬†And worse, foods such as sugar and white flour actually use up your stores of other nutrients to digest. ¬†So, you’re not getting “no nutrition”, you’re getting “negative nutrition”. ¬†And what do you need? ¬†Positive nutrition in order to feel full, good, and healthy.

3. ¬†Malnutrition is not just a matter of food. ¬†If you feel agitated, you may need to go for a walk or punch a pillow. ¬†Cake will not allow the emotion to move through. ¬†Cake will numb it and repress it and that can feel helpful at times, but the agitation is still there, just buried under cake. ¬†The starvation you feel when loneliness overtakes you? ¬†French fries really don’t give a flip about your struggles. ¬†Friends do. ¬†The craving you have for affection will not be met by squirting the whole can of whipped cream in your mouth. ¬†This cycle only creates more agitation, more loneliness, more cravings for human touch. ¬†In the same way negative nutrition creates deeper and deeper deficits, using food to do something it’s not meant to do, creates deeper and deeper emotional deficits.

4. ¬†Portion prescriptions. ¬†Once you are able to connect with your hunger, portions are the stupidest thing EVER. ¬†There are days when I eat 5 snacks a day. ¬†None are big enough to be called a meal. ¬†Others, I eat the traditional 3 squares. ¬†Some, I eat one big meal with a steak so big it can’t fit on the plate. ¬†Once in a long while, I only want a smoothie for the whole day. Portions as mandated from the heavens assume that you are the same, day in, day out. ¬†They assume that your level of activity is identical every day. ¬†They assume that your hormones never fluctuate. ¬†They assume that you at 18 is the same as you at 45. ¬†Yes, I know there are “formulas” that allow for variance, but, really? Formulas? ¬†How hungry are you today? ¬†Well, eat. ¬†If you’re not, don’t. ¬†You don’t have to eat 5 meals a day if you’re not hungry five times a day.

I could probably go on and on but this will dissolve into a rant instead of something useful REAL quick, so I’ll stop there. ¬†In short, eat when you’re hungry. ¬†Don’t eat when you’re not. ¬†Basically, Nourish yourself into Freedom.

If you haven’t joined us for #30daymove, yet, it’s not too late. ¬†Never too late!

Reader question: Water?

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Larissa writes: ¬†Water.¬† “don’t drink tap water.¬† don’t drink water from plastic bottles. use a filter. not all filters are ok., etc. etc.” are things that we hear all the time.¬† How is water essential to our health ? What minerals are there in water ? Is A lemon carbonated Perrier only pleasurable but also a healthy nourishing nutrient ? Salt and lemon in water to rehydrate ?

Full disclosure: Larissa is one my very best friends and she very humbly allows me to think I always know what I’m talking about. ¬†The woman is smart as a whip, however, and keeps me on my toes! ¬†We’re going to have to get her to do a guest post here.

There are a lot of questions in this request for an answer. ¬†Let’s try and take them one by one.

1.  How is water essential to our health?

Well, we are, on average, 60% water. ¬†Babies are like 80%. ¬†(That’s why they are so plump and delicious!) ¬†The water that we drink becomes our blood. ¬†We use water for these processes in the body:¬†

a.) gets oxygen to our cells

b.) between our joints, there is something called synovial fluid, the efficacy and “cushiness” of our joints depends on the amount of hydration we take in

c.) our cells communicate with each other-water make this communication more effective/efficient

d.) water maintains normal electrical properties of cells (yep, I saw the Matrix, too and yep, we probably could be used as batteries and that’s why we are in pods of fluid in those movies)

e.) our lymphatic system’s function depends on two things: 1. movement-it’s a kinetic system that requires movement to flow and 2. water-our lymphatic fluid’s viscosity is directly influenced by our water intake

f.) we are better able to regulate our body temperature when we are well hydrated (when you  consider the incredibly narrow range of healthy body temperature that we have and the incredibly broad range of environments in which humans live, you start to understand how crucial this is.)

g.) water removes waste from the body’s metabolic processes

There’s more, but I think you’re getting the picture. ¬†The short answer is “water is important”.

2.  What minerals are in water?

This is a deceptively simple question to answer.  Water, on a molecular level, is hydrogen and oxygen (dihydrogen monoxide for my geeks out there.  holla!)  However, the hydrogen and oxygen molecules act as a matrix (little m) for other things.  The minerals in water are incredibly variable according to the water source.  (My go-to guy for all anything water related is Daniel Vitalis, for those of you interested in a vastly more in-depth study of this.)  What that means is that the minerals in Perrier are going to be different than the minerals in San Pellegrino.  Are you still with me?

Now, once you understand that, you’ll see that water from different sources really is not the same thing. ¬†We drink water to hydrate, yes, but it is also a valuable source of nutrition. ¬†It is not just “wet”. ¬†I was lucky enough to grow up drinking water that came from a spring not far from my house. ¬†We never drank milk in my house, except on rare occasions when the farmer came by with his cow. ¬†(You’d tell him how many jars of milk you wanted-that you’d provide-and he’d milk the cow right there in your yard. ¬†True story.) ¬†Why do I mention this? ¬†Because, the water I grew up on fed through limestone rock. ¬†I can remember waiting until the end of my meal to drink my water (as is my culture) and there would be limestone sediment at the bottom of the glass, so rich in minerals was that water! ¬†Also, no fear of calcium deficiency, either.

So, the minerals in water are location dependent and source dependent.  

3. Is a lemon carbonated Perrier only pleasurable but also a healthy nourishing nutrient?

Yes. ¬†It is both. ¬†For people who live in cities and source their water (actually “tap liquid”, according to Daniel Vitalis) from the tap, mineral waters are a wonderful addition to the diet. ¬†I love to have sparkling water on a regular basis. ¬†I tend to brand hop. ¬†Appolinaris is a personal favorite, but I don’t do it frequently because of the whole “I love the earth and I’m paying for jet fuel and pollution by buying this.” thing. ¬†Water is incredibly heavy!! ¬†So, bottled water is not my favorite way to destroy the earth. ¬†

4.  Salt and lemon in water to rehydrate?

Yes, to both. ¬†Of course, I’m not talking about table salt, which you should probably get rid of A.S.A.P. ¬†Table salt is pretty much strictly sodium chloride and iodine. ¬†It will create an imbalance in the body on a mineral level, so please, sea salt. ¬†I vary my salt intake from different sources and every single time I go home to Haiti, I bring back a quart or so of local sea salt. ¬†True salt is also rich in minerals. ¬†Adding salt to denatured water helps remineralize it. ¬†As far as lemon and vinegar in water goes, I can remember reading that it helps with the availability of the water to the cells but can’t find the reference anymore, so take that with a grain of (sea) salt. ¬†Adding lemon and vinegar does do other things that are more frequently and commonly documented, like aiding with digestion and “stronger” blood.

5. ¬†This wasn’t asked outright but was implied at the beginning of the question. ¬†Water sources:

Worst:¬†Plastic bottles. ¬†Absolute worst. ¬†Don’t do it. ¬†We are becoming plastic people. ¬†Literally. ¬†Water is the more powerful solvent. ¬†When you drink water from plastic, you are also drinking plastic. ¬†

Less worse but not by much: Tap water. ¬†Most of the water is flouridated (carcinogen), chlorinated (carcinogen) and completely ‘purified’-denatured and demineralized. ¬†At least you’re not drinking plastic? ¬†Well, maybe, but whatever anyone is flushing down their toilet, it’s eventually getting back to you. ¬†I’m not talking about sewage, because that’s properly taken out of the flow, but prescription medications, etc. ¬†Those chemicals are finding their way into the water source regardless.

Even less worse: Filtered tap water. ¬†This is a good solution for most people. ¬†Personally, I would filter it through a really good filter, the best that you can afford, and I would add a little vinegar and some salt to it. ¬†Maybe a half a Tablespoon of each to a gallon. ¬†(I’m spitballing here and saying what I would do.)

The good stuff: ¬†Find a spring. ¬†Spring water is where it’s at. ¬†When I was living in the cabin, I would drive an hour every two-three weeks to fill glass carboys with spring water. ¬†Since I’ve moved, I haven’t yet found an easy to get to source. ¬†My old spring is two hours away. ¬†It’s becoming more and more worth it to make the trek. ¬†I’ve been drinking the tap water here and it is not the same. ¬†At. ¬†All. ¬†It doesn’t taste right nor is it hydrating me. ¬†I just have to get a couple more carboys to make the trek less frequently, but I will probably be doing the trip this weekend. ¬†It. ¬†Is. ¬†That. ¬†Important. ¬†And. ¬†That. ¬†Different.

Thanks Larissa for a great question!  I hope the information provided was useful.

*Disclaimer:  Everything I say on this blog is my opinion and just provided for information purposes only.  What you choose to do with that information is your responsibility.  

 

New Page!

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Just a quick post to let you know that we have a new page up to notify you about our upcoming events.  The first one of the year is an amazing, information-packed, super-practical 2 part workshop on how to nourish our children.  Would LOVE to see you all there!

Recipe: Preserved Lemons

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This is the most highly anticipated recipe that you didn’t even realize that you couldn’t live without. ¬†You only thought that your kitchen was well stocked and that all your other recipes were doing just fine. ¬†This little addition is kitchen gold, I tell you, gold!

 

Preserved Lemons a.k.a. Sunshine in a Jar of Yumminess

What you’ll need:

A very clean glass jar with lid

A tamper downer (and yes, that is the correct technical terminology)  (not really)

Lemons

Sea salt

A sharp knife

Time

The return on this investment is unreal by the way. ¬†I’m not sure how much more I can gush over these, really. ¬†I buy the lemons when they go on sale. ¬†They’re usually on sale because they’re about to be over ripe. ¬†In other words, you’re going to take the lemons that life hands you, add salt and preserve them to make something even better than lemonade.

Okey dokey (there’s a lot of preamble because the recipe is overly simple).

1. Cut your lemons into quarters or eighths.

2. Put lemons in jar.  (I do this every two lemons because the rhythm seems right.)

3. Put a pinch of sea salt in the jar.  

4.  Tamp down releasing all the juices.

5.  Repeat this process until your jar is full.

6.  Close jar.

7. Wait.

I wait anywhere from 3-14 days.  The longer this sits, the better it gets.

The one thing you want to watch is that at the top of the jar, the lemons are completely immersed in their juices to keep air from getting to the flesh.  

These are good chopped into just about anything. ¬†They are unbelievable with merguez and green salads. ¬†The juice can be used just like you’d use fresh. ¬†Just adjust for the salt.

Enjoy!  Nourish yourself into Freedom.

Let’s talk about stress. Again.

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A couple weeks ago, I offered up an idea that maybe a lot of the problem with stress is our perception of it.  We live in a both/and universe which means that two (seemingly) contradictory ideas can coexist.  What that means is that although your perception of what is stressing you out goes a very long way it the way it affects you, stress and the hormones that cascade through you are very real, and very physical.

 

Here are some things to think about:

 

1. Stress requires a response. ¬†That’s pretty inherent in the way we’ve defined it. ¬†Stress is anything that requires/promotes/stimulates a response from the body. ¬†

 

2. Get rid of the unnecessary conversations.¬†¬†This both metaphorical and literal. ¬†There are so many things that we do that we think we have to, but that we really don’t. ¬†You don’t have to work so hard to afford a bigger house. ¬†You don’t have to exercise 7 days a week. You don’t have to have people in your life that bring you down. ¬†You don’t have to be on Facebook.¬†(BLASPHEMY!)¬†You don’t have to always be reachable. ¬†

 

3. It’s physical.¬†¬†Even “mental”stress is physical stress. ¬†You body releases the same hormones thinking about something stressful as when you’re experiencing something stressful. ¬†

 

4. Be physical. ¬†Move the locus of control from your “mind” to your body. ¬†That fatigue you power through? ¬†The holidays that you buy your way through even though you can’t afford it and most of the stuff you buy people don’t want? ¬†(Put down that CVS stuffed animal with the stupid plastic flower it’s holding. ¬†Nobody REALLY wants it.) ¬†Get a massage instead or go for a walk. ¬†Sleep. ¬†Listen to what your body is telling you it needs. ¬†Stop trying to convince it that it’s wrong. ¬†

 

5. Respond.¬†¬†If you have eliminated all the unnecessary, respond with authority to the necessary. ¬†Take back your power. ¬†Find a solution. ¬†Run away fast if it’s dangerous. ¬†Do.

 

6.  Nourish yourself, nourish yourself, nourish yourself.  When we are responding to stressors, our bodies will deplete of certain essential vitamins and minerals.  Keep yourself well fed, well rested, etc.

 

 

7. ¬†Find other ways than food to nourish yourself.¬†¬†On that last note, when you are in a chronically stressed state, don’t eat so much. ¬†The digestive system pretty much shuts down when we are acutely stressed. ¬†Forcing food down is a bad idea. ¬†Food is there to feed you, not take care of your feelings. ¬†It is okay to skip breakfast. ¬†It is okay to have just some bone broth for dinner. ¬†It’s okay to skip a meal or two. ¬†This is natural. ¬†This is also much easier to do when you are really feeding yourself with nutrient density the rest of the time. ¬†A well nourished body is one that can handle stress far better than a malnourished one.

 

8.  Play.  You can do this physically by going outside and climbing a tree or making mud pies or snow forts.  You can also do this with attitude.  The vast majority of the things that stress us out now are not a life and death situation like they were for our ancestors.  We still behave as it they are.  Release the clench you have on the stressors defining you.  It will not KILL you to be 10 minutes late.  It may kill you when you chronically freak out about traffic, weakening your heart and immune system.  It may kill you when you speed to make up for it.  

 

9.  Give it 30 seconds.  Jump up and down, shake your hands furiously, move.  But, not for long, when you are acutely stressed.  Your body is expecting that.  The chemicals that flood your blood stream are not meant to be there for long.  You evolved from the survivors.  And the survivors ran.  They ran hard.  Or they fought.  They fought hard.  But, they did neither for long.  Just enough to get to safety.  

10. ¬†Your body is not wrong.¬†¬†We have designed a lifestyle that didn’t really consult the body. ¬†We erroneously allow the lifestyle to take precedence. ¬†Then, we get angry when the body can’t keep up. ¬†The body is not wrong. ¬†It’s more than possible that the lifestyle is. ¬†You have the power to recreate a lifestyle that honors the body. ¬†This is how to have freedom.