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Colored Carbs

Fruits and vegetables are beneficial carbs partly because of their colors. Their rainbow hues indicate precious phytochemicals your body needs for health. So, take a lesson from nature. Remember the colors of the stoplight to stop inflammation and blood sugar imbalances that come from eating white refined carbohydrates. Choose red, yellow, and green colored carbs to replace rice, potatoes, and pasta.

Red Lentils and Tomato – best with beef

The lycopene from the red colored carbs in this dish provides antioxidant protection.

red lentils are colored carbs

  • 1 c. red lentils, washed and drained
  • 2 c. bone broth
  • 2 Tb. coconut oil or red palm oil
  • 1 tsp. brown mustard seed
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin seed
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1″ ginger root, grated
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 c. tomato paste
  • 1/2 tsp. salt or more to taste

In a small saucepan, combine the lentils and broth. Bring to a simmer. Then reduce heat, cover, and cook until lentils are soft and only a little liquid remains, about 20 minutes. Meanwhile, melt the oil over medium heat. Add the seeds. When they sizzle and change color (10-20 seconds), stir in the onion. Saute until onion becomes translucent, 2-3 minutes, then add in the garlic and tomato paste. Reduce heat to low and cook gently to marry the flavors while the lentils finish cooking. Combine the cooked lentils with the tomato mixture. Add salt to taste.

Yellow Plantain Wraps – beautiful with teriyaki chicken

High in fiber and low in glycemic index, these yellow colored carbs help stabilize blood sugars.

plantain tortillas are yellow colored carbs

  • 2  plantains
  • 1 yucca root
  • 2 Tb. coconut oil
  • salt to taste

Peel the plantains by slitting the skin from stem to blossom-end with a sharp knife. Insert your thumbs into the slit and pull the skin back and away from the fruit. Then cut the plantain into 1-2″ pieces. To peel the yucca root, cut the root into quarters lengthwise. Use a paring knife to cut the skin away, including the pink membrane under the woody outer covering. Likewise, cut the yucca root into 1-2″ pieces.

Now, put the plantains in a saucepan covered with water and bring to a boil. Simmer 15 minutes. Drain and cool. In a high powered blender or food processor, mash the plantain and yucca root with the coconut oil and salt until it is smooth like mashed potatoes. Form 6 balls. Roll each ball between pieces of parchment paper or flatten in a tortilla press to 1/8″ thickness. Cook on a medium high griddle until golden brown, about 2 minutes per side.

Green Lentils with Capers – complimentary to fish

Small but mighty, green lentils are colored carbs that help lower cholesterol.

French lentils are green colored carbs

Photo credit: Romulo Yanes

  • 1 c. French green lentils
  • 4 c. bone broth
  • 2 leeks, thinly sliced (white part only)
  • 1/4 c. butter
  • 1 Tb. lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp. dried tarragon
  • 4 oz. capers
  • Salt to taste

Put the lentils to simmer in a saucepan with broth over medium heat for about 40 minutes, until liquid is absorbed and lentils are tender. Meanwhile, saute the leeks in butter. Then add the leeks, lemon juice, tarragon, capers, and salt to the cooked lentils and cook 5 more minutes to marry flavors.

 

 

nutrient-rich yogurt bowl

5 Nutrient-Rich Breakfasts

One of the most important steps you can take to balance your blood sugars is to eat a nutrient-rich breakfast. Instead of dashing out the door with a granola bar, or slamming down a bowl of cold cereal, try these family favorites that comfort and nourish simultaneously.

For the Oatmeal Lover: Nutrient-Rich Black Rice Pudding

Nutrient-Rich Black Rice Pudding

For being nutrient-rich, the darkest rice wins the prize. In this soothing and creamy pudding, rice is cooked in coconut milk to increase its healthy fat content, then served with vitamin-packed berries.

  • 1 cup wild or black rice
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 can full-fat coconut milk
  • 3 scoops protein powder
  • 1/3 c. pure maple syrup
  • Berries and cream for garnish

The night before, simmer rice and water in a rice cooker or covered saucepan on medium heat until water is absorbed, 30-40 minutes. The following morning, add the remaining ingredients and cook until rice begins to break down and the mixture thickens. Garnish and serve. Makes 6 cups.

 

For the Pancake Lover: Nutrient-Rich Okonomiyaki

nutrient-rich Japanese pancakes

These Japanese pancakes are a delicious way to eat more nutrient-rich vegetables. Basically, you make a pancake batter, add shredded vegetables, fry them, and top them with sriracha mayonnaise, sesame seeds, and green onions.

  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 c. water
  • 1 Tb. soy sauce or coconut aminos
  • 1 1/2 Tb. fish sauce
  • 2 Tb. sesame oil
  • 1 c. whole wheat or gluten-free flour
  • 1/2 head cabbage, shredded (about 4 cups)
  • 1 carrot, grated
  • 1 bunch green onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 Tb. coconut oil

Heat oil in a heavy skillet over medium heat. While it is warming, whisk together the eggs, water, soy sauce, and sesame oil. Next, stir in flour until a thick batter forms. Then add cabbage, carrots, and half of green onions. Lastly, stir until vegetables are evenly coated with batter. Now, pour 3/4 cup batter at a time into the skillet, smoothing with the back of a spoon into a circle about 1/2 inch thick. Cook until golden brown on the bottom (3-4 minutes, flip and repeat. Serve topped with remaining green onions, sesame seeds, and sriracha mayonnaise.

 

For The Meat Lover: Nutrient-Rich Vegetable & Sausage Skillet

nutrient-rich skillet of yams, apples and sausages

Photo Credit: Aidells Sausage

Pure comfort food – that’s what I call yams and apples with warm spices, layered with grilled sausages. No one will even think twice about the nutrient-rich greens tossed in. If you make it the night before, and pop it in the oven to heat through when you wake up, it will be ready by the time you are.

  • 2 sweet potatoes (about 2 pounds), baked
  • 1 package Aidells Chicken & Apple Sausage
  • 3 apples
  • 1/4 c. butter
  • 1/2 tsp. each cinnamon and nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp. each ginger and coriander
  • 2 Tb. pure maple syrup
  • Salt to taste
  • 2-3 c. spinach or kale, cut into fine strips

First, peel and cube sweet potatoes and set aside. Second, slice sausage and cook according to package directions. Third, dice apples and saute in butter with maple syrup and spices. The last minute of cooking, toss the cut greens in with the apples. Finally, combine all ingredients in a covered casserole dish. If desired, refrigerate for use at a later time. An hour before serving, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake casserole for 45 minutes, or until heated through.

 

For The Smoothie Lover: Nutrient-Rich Tropical Smoothie

nutrient-rich green smoothie

This pineapple-coconut smoothie supports your blood sugars with protein and natural fat. Additionally, it contains nutrient-rich leafy greens, essential omega 3 fatty acids, and a bitter herb (ginger) to enhance digestion.

Greena-Colada

  • 1/3 c. frozen pineapple juice concentrate
  • 2/3 c. ice and water
  • 1 c. coconut milk, chilled
  • 2 c. spinach (I freeze mine ahead of time)
  • 1 tsp. grated or minced fresh ginger root
  • 2 scoops protein powder
  • 2 capsules Omega 3 fish oil

Before blending, slit open the capsules of fish oil and squirt the contents into the blender. Discard the empty capsules. Then add the remaining ingredients. Blend until smooth and frothy. Serve immediately. Serves two.

 

For the Yogurt Lover: Nutrient-Rich Breakfast Bowl

nutrient-rich yogurt bowl

Chock-full of protein-packed yogurt, beneficial seeds, and antioxidant berries, this powerful nutrient-rich combo will keep you fueled for hours.

Just layer and serve!

If you like these recipes, check out our cookbook!

 

 

Big Fat Treat #2: chocolate pops/pudding

Big Fat Treats

If you want to quit sugar, it’s important to “add before you subtract.” In other words, feed your soul and body to avoid deprivation. So, increase the amount of satisfying, wholesome fat you eat, while decreasing the amount of sweeteners you consume. When you increase your fat-to-sugar ratio, you prevent the blood sugar crash that sends you diving for donuts. My clients report that their cravings quit when they eat their Big Fat Treats.

Below are 3 simple Big Fat Treat recipes that you can make in just 5-10 minutes. Healthy fats such as nuts, avocado, and coconut as the basis for these snacks. A little bit goes a long way. Therefore, a few bites will leave you happier than a whole package of Oreos.

Big Fat Treat #1: Fruity Frosty

Fruity Frosty is a Big Fat Treat

photo credit: Mordi Photographie

Blend or process until smooth:

  • 1 c. frozen raspberries
  • whole avocado, peeled & pitted
  • 1 Tb. each lime juice and honey

Eat immediately, or scoop into an ice cream freezer and churn according to manufacturer’s directions.

Winning variations

  • Peach: 1 c. frozen peaches, 1/2 c. coconut milk, and 1 Tb. orange juice concentrate.
  • Cherry: 1 c. frozen cherries, 1/4 c. almond butter, 1 Tb. pomegranate juice plus water for blending.
  • Banana: 1 c. frozen banana slices, 1/4 c. cashew butter, 1 Tb. pure maple syrup, plus milk for blending.

 

Big Fat Treat #2: Chocolate Pudding/Pops

Big Fat Treat #2: chocolate pops/pudding

Blend or process until smooth:

  • 1 large banana
  • 1 Haas avocado
  • 3-4 oz. bittersweet chocolate bar, 70% cacao, melted
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 Tb. pure maple syrup, optional

Spoon into cups and refrigerate until serving time, or spoon into molds and freeze for fudgesicles.

 

Big Fat Treat #3: Ginger Cookies

Ginger Cookies are Big Fat Treat #3

  • 2 c. raw walnuts or pecans*
  • 1 c. dried dates (pitted) or figs*
  • 1/4 c. molasses
  • 4 Tb. arrowroot or tapioca starch
  • 1/2 tsp. ginger
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. cloves
  • 1/4 tsp. salt

While oven is preheating to 325 degrees, churn nuts and dates in a food processor until they form a smooth paste.* Then, add remaining ingredients and pulse to combine. Next, form 1″ balls. Place on a greased, sprayed, or parchment-lined baking sheet. Finally, flatten with the palm of your hand. Bake for 10-12 minutes.

Note: If you do not have a food processor, you can substitute 1 cup of nut butter and 1/3 cup honey for the nuts and dates/figs.

Chocolate Round-up Recipes for Valentine's Day

Valentine’s Day Chocolate Round-Up

Perhaps no treat is more popular at Valentine’s Day than chocolate. And for good reason! Chocolate releases a chemical in the brain called phenylethylamine. This chemical is called the “love drug” because it stimulates that same twittery pulse you feel in a romantic relationship. But because we all need to avoid sugar, here’s your Chocolate Round-up for healthier treat options this Valentine’s Day.

Peppermint Patties

Dr Axe's Homemade Peppermint Patties

They might sound difficult to make, but these homemade peppermint patties from Dr. Axe are quite simple to whip up at home.

Fudgesicles

Fudge Pops from Mommypotamus

There’s no better way to capture the joy of frosty chocolate creamies  than with this winner from Mommypotamus.

Bliss Balls

Bliss Balls from Healing Family Eats

Here’s a recipe from Healing Family Eats to prove you CAN have a treat without resorting to added sweeteners.

Brownies

Flourless brownies from Paleo Grubs

Have a pan of mind-blowing flourless brownies from Paleo Grubs in just 30 minutes.

Chocolate Truffles

Chocolate Truffles from Dr. Jockers

Decadent and rich, the secret ingredient in these creamy delights from Dr. Jockers is avocado.

Hazelnut Fudge

Hazelnut Fudge from Inner Connected Wellness

This is one of my very own recipes. Cocoa powder and carob powder are interchangeable in these simple fudge balls.

 

 

 

Eat more vegetables with cake, pizza, fruit, and pancakes.

Eat More Vegetables

Let’s face it: Vegetables are not exactly comfort food! But we all know we need to eat more of them. Try these 3 easy tips to eat more vegetables in your family.

1. Go Green

Here’s a hint for multiplying your intake: buy a big bag of spinach, arugula, mustard, chard, kale, or other dark leafy variety – even parsley or cilantro. The minute you get home from the store, toss the whole bag in your freezer (trimming stems may be necessary). After it is frozen completely, crumple the bag, breaking up the leaves into tiny bits. Return the bag to your freezer. Then, every time you’re making food, put some frozen green fragments into your dish. This works for stuffed meats and pastas, sauces, soups, smoothies, sandwiches and stir-fries.

The “freeze-your-greens” trick is how I got 3 cups of arugula into 12 ounces of pizza sauce for this segment on the KPVI Morning Show.

2. Sneak in Some Sulphur

When I say sulphur, I mean vegetables from the cruciferous, allium, and mushroom families.

  • Cruciferous vegetables include broccoli, kale, spinach, radishes, bok choy, cauliflower, cabbage, turnips, and arugula.
  • Alliums are onions, garlic, leeks, shallots, green onions, and chives
  • Mushrooms go far beyond the button variety. Shiitake, Morel, Maitake, Portabello, and Oyster are a few popular choices.

Because cruciferous vegetables are the hardest to disguise with their sulphur-y taste, I’m going to to show you how easy it is to hide them. I have 4 sneaky ways to add them to your family meals: pancakes, pizza, fruit salad and chocolate cake!

JAPANESE PANCAKES, known as okonomiyaki, are comforting street food. They are a delicious way to eat more vegetables. Basically, you make a pancake batter, add shredded vegetables, fry them, and top them with sriracha mayonnaise, sesame seeds, and green onions. Try this recipe:

Japanese Pancakes are 1 way to eat more vegetables

Ingredients

2 large eggs

1/4 c. water

1 Tb. soy sauce or coconut aminos

1 1/2 Tb. fish sauce

2 Tb. sesame oil

1 c. whole wheat or gluten-free flour

1/2 head cabbage, shredded (about 4 cups)

1 carrot, grated

1 bunch green onions, thinly sliced

2 Tb. coconut oil

Directions

Whisk together the eggs, water, soy sauce, and sesame oil. stir in flour until a thick batter forms. Add cabbage, carrots, and half of green onions. Stir until vegetables are evenly coated with batter. Heat oil in a heavy skillet over medium heat. Pour 3/4 cup batter at a time into the skillet, smoothing with the back of a spoon into a circle about 1/2 inch thick. Cook until golden brown on the bottom (3-4 minutes, flip and repeat. Serve topped with remaining green onions, sesame seeds, and sriracha mayonnaise.

Eat More Vegetables Than That

How about a CHEESE PIZZA, made with 3 whole cups of arugula? Chop your the greens finely (see freezer method above), and stir them into the pizza sauce before spreading it on the crust. Then top with mozzarella and parmesan. Bake in a 400 degree oven for about 20 minutes.

eat more vegetables with cheese pizza

In this colorful CHICKEN & APPLE SALAD, there are chunks of raw turnip. Because they are white and crisp, they blend right in with the apple. Toss the following ingredients and serve over mixed greens:

chicken apple salad helps you eat more vegetables

Ingredients

2 chicken breasts,  cooked and sliced into strips

4 cups of spring lettuces

1/2 purple onion, thinly sliced

1/2 c. pecans, broken into pieces

1 red apple, diced

1 raw turnip, peeled and diced

1/2 c. dried cranberries

Dressing Ingredients

2/3 c. olive oil

2 Tb. red wine vinegar

2 Tb. apple cider vinegar

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 Tb. Dijon mustard

2 Tb. honey

And Eat More Vegetables Still

Finally, there is CHOCOLATE CAKE Chocolate Covered Katie from . Can you guess the secret ingredient? It’s cauliflower! That’s what makes the cake so moist. But you can’t taste it – even though there’s 4 cups! Here’s how I made it:

have your cake and eat more vegetables

Ingredients

2 c. whole wheat or gluten-free flour

1 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. salt

2 tsp. baking powder

1/2 c. unsweetened cocoa powder

4 Tb. ground flax

1 c. coconut sugar or raw turbinado sugar

2 Chocolove Strong Chocolate, Almond, & Sea Salt bars, broken into 1/4″ bits*

1 Tb. pure vanilla extract

2 14-oz. bags frozen cauliflower, thawed but not cooked

2/3 c. milk (dairy or non-dairy)

1/2 c. butter, melted

Frosting Ingredients

1/2 c. peanut or almond butter

1/3 c. pure maple syrup

1/4 c. unsweetened cocoa powder

2 Tb. milk

2 tsp. vanilla extract

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease  and flour 2 round 8″ cake pans. Combine dry ingredients and mix well. Puree vanilla, cauliflower, milk, and butter in blender until very smooth. Pour into dry ingredients, and stir just until evenly moistened. Pour into prepared pans. Bake 30 minutes. While cake is baking, whisk together frosting ingredients. Cool cake 15 minutes in pans, then invert onto cooling racks. Ice when completely cool. Store in refrigerator.

*Note: to break chocolate bars, freeze them first, then hit them with a meat mallet.

3. Crank Up the Color

Colors make meals visually appealing. But they taste good, too, and have tons of health benefits. So, you can eat more vegetables and really enjoy them. Choose from as many colors as you can each day! Eat them raw, or eat the grilled, roasted, steamed, or sauteed. Ditch your beige foods and eat a cup of colors every meal!

  • Green: (excluding leafy varieties above) asparagus, broccoli, cucumber, green beans, celery, cucumber, artichoke, Brussels sprouts
  • Red: sweet red peppers, tomatoes, beets, red potatoes (skin on)
  • Yellow/Orange: carrots, sweet potatoes, pumpkin, yellow peppers
  • Blue/purple: eggplant, purple cabbage, purple onion, purple potato
  • White: parsnips, rutabaga, turnip, cauliflower, garlic, onion, ginger, mushrooms
"Donut" think it's hard to quit sugar

How To Quit Sugar

In just 10 days, you can quit sugar for good. You don’t have to be trapped in poor dietary habits that make you feel sluggish, heavy and captive to cravings.

Many people believe they lack the discipline to change their food addictions. But sugar and refined carb dependencies are not emotional conditions. They are biologic disorders, caused by hormones and neurotransmitters. You can reset you physiology by following these basic guidelines:

1. Add Before You Subtract

It’s easier to add food to your diet, than to take it out. When you are properly nourished, you are satisfied. That means you stop looking for fillers to keep you going between meals. If you’re not feeling “snack-y,” then you’re not as likely to cave in to the donuts as co-worker brings to the office or the cookies your partner just pulled from the oven.

So to prime yourself for success, eat the following:

  • Abundant amounts of non-starchy vegetables – even at breakfast! Be sure to include some leafy greens, some sulphurous veggies (broccoli, onion, and mushroom families), and plenty of colored vegetables (including red, orange, and purple) each day.
  • Adequate protein each meal (4-6 ounces) from eggs, fish, poultry, meat, nuts, or seeds. Quality is more important than quantity here.
  • One serving of healthy fat three times per day. Fats help stabilize your blood sugars so that you don’t hit an energy crisis where you need instant fuel from quick (and damaging) carbohydrates. Choose from olives, avocados, coconut, nuts, seeds, and their accompanying unrefined oils. You can also use grass-fed butter.

If you are unsure of what to cook, you can find recipes in Dr. Hyman’s 10-Day Detox Starter Kit.

2. Feed Your Soul

Instead of handling emotions by eating, nurture yourself with healthy  practices, such as journaling, meditation, movement, and wholesome recreation. Spend time on loving relationships. Treat yourself with 8 hours of sleep per night. Practice deep breathing, and enjoy detoxifying Epsom salt baths.

3. Quit Sugar Cold Turkey

You can do anything for a brief time. So commit to yourself that for only 10 days, you will completely quit sugar. Avoid all foods that list sugar as an ingredient. Your success in freeing yourself depends on absolute compliance. Tapering down gradually will keep you hostage to nagging cravings.

Also eliminate the following because they sustain sugar addiction:

  • All processed foods.
  • Grains, starchy vegetables, beans, and fruit (except 1/2 c. of berries per day).
  • Coffee, soda, alcohol, and juice.

4. Give Yourself a Boost

Jump start your 10 days to quit sugar with a metabolic cleanse, like this detox kit from Biotics. It will provide powerful micro nutrients and abundant antioxidants that will kick up your energy so that you don’t miss your daily sugar and caffeine fix.

5. Find Freedom

You will be feeling so much stronger in these short 10 days, that you will not want to return to your old habits. So you can continue for another 10 days, and another. Soon, you will find that sugar and refined carbs do not appeal to you any more. You will be able to use whole grains, legumes, and fruit in moderation. Your un-dieting protocol will become a lifestyle.

Onions & red cabbage or 2 beneficial winter vegetables

Winter Vegetables

Nature knows. When gray days and dark nights bring the sweet indulgences of New Years, Mother Nature provides some of her most powerful foods. Winter vegetables, primarily in the cruciferous family, restore your vitality in several ways.

Liver Tonic

The vegetables that thrive in cooler weather (not above 70 degrees) include leafy greens, plants in the onion family, and crucifers. For instance, spinach and chard (leafy greens), garlic and leeks (onion family), and cauliflower and cabbage (crucifers) are highly frost-resistant. In fact, they may even be sweeter when the temperature dips below freezing. While the crucifers have a reputation for smelling and tasting strong because of their sulphur compounds, it is these nutrients that benefit your liver. They help the liver detoxify your blood and they protect your liver from damage. Other crucifers are broccoli, Brussels sprouts, kale, collards, turnips, and bok choy.

In addition, onions, chives, shallots, leeks, and garlic have sulphur compounds. So, they are tonic to the liver as well.

More Benefits of Winter Vegetables

The cool season vegetables are high in fiber. Not only does this include the vegetables above, but also stalk vegetables, such as celery and fennel. Fiber normalizes bowel movements, regulates blood sugars, lowers cholesterol, and aids in weight management.

Winter vegetables – especially leafy greens and many of the crucifers – are high in chlorophyll. Therefore, they are blood-builders and detoxifiers. Also, cold-tolerant produce runs high in antioxidants and is cancer-protective.

How to Eat Winter Vegetables

Steaming or roasting, then dressing with butter and lemon are delicious and healthy ways to serve cold-hardy vegetables. Crucifers yield their sulphur compounds more readily when cooked. I enjoy splashing them with a bit of balsamic vinegar in place of the lemon. A mix of rosemary, thyme, oregano, and marjoram sprinkled on these winter offerings makes them even more appetizing.  You might enjoy this recipe for oven-roasted vegetables that includes turnips and broccoli or Brussels sprouts.

For an exotic Diner en Blanc, you can try cauliflower dressed with anchovy fillets and Pecorino Romano cheese. But if the thought of vegetable anything turns you off, perhaps you’ll like moist chocolate cake that uses cauliflower as a secret ingredient.

Below are the simplest ways to prepare several of the most common winter vegetables. A guide to winter vegetables and fruits

nutrient-rich green smoothie

Post-Holiday Detox

After rounds of chestnuts roasting on an open fire, visions of sugar plums, and even figgy pudding, do you need a post-holiday detox? Are you feeling sluggish, heavy and tired? You’ll need more than a green smoothie to regain your well-being. But, there are many simple tricks you can perform at home now and throughout 2019. So throw away those cookie platters and let’s get started!

Support Your Liver

Pamper your liver, since it is the organ responsible for taking toxins out of your body. Stimulate a nourishing blood supply to it by patting your right torso just below the ribs while you are in a hot shower. For extra-special treatment, you can place castor oil packs on it.

Your liver needs specific categories of food to function well. First, give it “sulphurs, greens, and sours.” These foods are tonic to that organ. Sulphurs include all edible mushrooms, vegetables in the onion family, and vegetables in the cruciferous family.  Some dark leafy greens that you might not think to eat regularly are chard, cilantro, parsley, and watercress. For sours, spike your water with lemon juice, or take a shot of a probiotic beverage, such as kombucha, kefir, or sauerkraut juice.

Since detoxification is a process that requires lots of amino acids, feed your liver plenty of protein. It is a myth that you can detox just by juicing. Vegetable juices are cleansing because they reduce inflammation and scrub out the colon. But they don’t provide enough amino acids for liver function.

Lastly, “grease the skids.” Your liver needs Omega 3 fatty acids to make the bile that will carry toxins out through the colon. These fatty acids are highest in mackerel, salmon, cod liver oil, herring, oysters, and sardines.

Open All Your Elimination Ports

Your post-holiday detox should expand beyond liver support. What happens if the liver cleans out the toxins, but the ports of elimination are clogged? Well, all those toxins go right back into the blood and you get sick! Your five ports are:

  1. Skin: You can flush the skin by sweating! That might mean going to the sauna or engaging in an intense cardio workout. A great way to sweat in the winter time is to add a tablespoon of dried ginger powder to your bath water. Ginger is a diaphoretic herb. Unfortunately, some people experience burning on their skin in reaction to the ginger powder. If this happens, add a half cup of apple cider vinegar to the water.
  2. Lungs: Deep breathing is the key to opening your lungs. So, draw your breath from below the diaphragm, making your belly rise as you inhale. If you don’t exercise regularly, take at least 5-10 deep breaths each morning and evening.
  3. Lymph: One of the easiest ways to move lymph without working out is by dry skin brushing. We like this tutorial. Alternately, you can move lymph by switching between hot and cold water in the shower. Stay in water as hot as you can stand for 4-5 minutes, then turn it as cold as you can tolerate for 30 seconds. Repeat two more times.
  4. Kidneys: You have to stay well-hydrated to keep your kidneys happy. If you don’t like drinking water, consider herbal teas as an alternative. The rule of thumb is to daily drink 2 ounces of water for every pound of body weight, capping at 100 ounces of water. However, caffeinated and sugared beverages do not count. In fact, add 2 ounces of water for every ounce of coffee, tea, soda, or juice that you drink.
  5. Colon: You can induce your “river of toxins” to move by including bitter herbs in your diet. For instance, drink peppermint or chamomile tea, serve globe artichoke as an appetizer, or chew fennel seeds after a meal. Additionally, you can use arugula, parsley, cilantro, radicchio watercress, and dandelion greens in salads.

Try A Metabolic Cleanse

To jump-start your post-holiday detox, order a detox kit such as the NutriClear Plus 15 Day Cleanse from Biotics. It includes 30 meal-replacement protein drink mixes, a shaker cup, daily supplement packs with liver-tonic herbs, and a guidebook of recipes and instructions. Moreover, it supports your energy production and is easily digested. It contains abundant anti-oxidants, added fiber, and a powerful blend of micronutrients.

Post-Holiday Detox Smoothie

Finally, about that smoothie. While it won’t detox your body by itself, certainly it does support your efforts by providing protein, sulphurous greens,  omega 3s and a bitter herb (ginger). Here’s the recipe!

Green Pina Colada

1/3 c. frozen pineapple juice concentrate

2/3 c. ice and water

1 c. coconut milk, chilled

2 c. spinach (I freeze mine ahead of time)

1 tsp. grated or minced fresh ginger root

2 scoops protein powder

2 capsules Omega 3 fish oil

Slit open the capsules of fish oil and squirt the contents into the blender along with the remaining ingredients. Discard the empty capsules. Blend the ingredients until smooth and frothy. Serve immediately. Serves two.

 

 

 

 

 

nutrient-rich skillet of yams, apples and sausages

Holiday Brunch

Christmas comfort food – that’s what I call yams and apples with warm spices, layered with grilled sausages. Make it a few days before your celebration, and pop it in the oven to heat through when you wake up. It will be ready for brunch after your Christmas morning festivities.

Ingredients

2 sweet potatoes (about 2 pounds), baked

1 package Aidells Chicken & Apple Sausage

3 apples

1/4 c. butter

1/2 tsp. each cinnamon and nutmeg

1/4 tsp. each ginger and coriander

2 Tb. pure maple syrup

Salt to taste

Directions

Peel and cube sweet potatoes and set aside. Slice sausage and cook according to package directions. Dice apples and saute in butter with maple syrup and spices. Combine all ingredients in a covered casserole dish. If desired, refrigerate for use at a later time. An hour before serving, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake casserole for 45 minutes, or until heated through.

kale vs. candy

Kale vs. Candy

Can you be healthy simply by limiting calories? Or does the type of food you eat matter? In a kale vs. candy debate, Dr. Mark Hyman, founder and director of the UltraWellness Center, discusses how calories from refined carbohydrates react differently in your body that calories from nutrient dense food. Here is his view.

Not All Calories Are Created Equal

If managing weight were as simple as calories in and calories out, we’d all be at our ideal weight.

But it’s clear that’s not the case, since nearly 40% of our population is obese, and  2 out of 3 adults in the US is either overweight or obese. That’s because food is more than just calories. Food is information that our cells need to function. You metabolism uses that information to either run efficiently or sluggishly trudge along.

One of the biggest food lies of all time is that all calories are created equal. Even a child could tell you that the calories you get from kale are going to have a completely different impact on your body than calories from candy.

Let’s look at what those calories from candy actually do to your body:

How Candy Impacts Your Body

When you eat candy, processed and refined carbs (such as bread or cereal) or even fruit juices, your gut quickly absorbs the fiber-free sugars, fructose, and glucose. These spike your blood sugar. Now, your body starts a cascade of hormonal responses that kick bad biochemistry into gear. The first hormone to go askew is insulin, which rockets in response to high blood sugar. Did you know that high insulin increases storage of belly fat, increases inflammation, and raises triglycerides. Not only that, it also lowers HDL, raises blood pressure, lowers testosterone in men, and contributes to infertility in women.

Insulin increases your appetite because it changes your brain chemistry. It blocks your appetite-control hormone leptin. So, the brain never gets the “I’m full” signal. Instead, it thinks you are starving. Since sugar triggers your pleasure-based reward center,  you consume even more sugar, fueling your sugar addiction.

There’s another issue when we examine kale vs. candy. Today, many processed foods are might not only with sugar, but also with high fructose corn syrup. Fructose just makes matters worse. It goes right to your liver, where it starts manufacturing fat. These fat stores in the liver make it insulin resistant, triggering even higher blood insulin levels. Then, chronically high insulin drives your body to store everything you eat as even more belly fat. You also get a fatty liver, which generates more inflammation. Chronic inflammation causes still more weight gain and diabetes/obesity.

Another problem with fructose is that it doesn’t send feedback to the brain to signal that a load of calories just hit the body. Nor does it reduce ghrelin, the appetite hormone that is usually reduced when you eat real food, like kale.

How Kale Works In Your Body

Kale is rich in fiber and low in carbohydrates and sugar. You have to eat a buckets of leafy greens to reach the same amount of calories that just one small bag of candy provides. Thanks to kale’s fiber, you get full long before that ever happens.

When you eat a nice hearty helping of kale, there is no blood sugar spike, and no insulin rush. That means there is no fatty liver, and no hormonal chaos. The fiber causes your stomach to distend, sending signals to your brain that you are full. Kale does not trigger the addiction reward center in the brain. It helps optimize metabolism, lowers cholesterol, reduces inflammation, and boosts detoxification from all the phytonutrients it offers.

Quality Matters in Kale vs. Candy

Remember that in the kale vs. candy debate, eating well isn’t just about calories. Quality matters, too. Real foods like colorful vegetables, low-glycemic fruits, healthy fats (like nuts, seeds, avocados, olives, etc.), gluten-free whole grains, legumes, and responsibly sourced animals proteins and seafood give your cells the information they need to function at their very best.

So choose kale vs. candy; focus on quality more than quantity. It will change your relationship to food. Your health will thank you.

Wishing you health and happiness,

Dr. Mark Hyman, MD