Tag Archives: nutrition

  1. Bone Broth Braised Greens {Paleo, Gluten-free, Whole30, AIP}

    These Bone Broth Braised Greens are a nourishing addition to any holiday table or just a perfect, comforting side dish, for anytime. Bone broth, onion, garlic, lemon and red pepper flakes add flavor to this side dish that can be made with whatever hearty green is in season. Collard greens, Swiss chard, kale or a mix of your favorites.

    Bone Broth Braised Greens

    Bone Broth Braised Greens

    I find that at holiday tables (shoot many dinner tables year ’round, for that matter) the veggies are often an afterthought. The thing people throw together and half-ass, because they “have to”. Veggies deserve more love than that. A little respect and honor, ya know? After all, nutrient-rich veggies should be the backbone of any real food diet, or any diet really. We should be shooting for some green stuff at every single meal. Non-negotiable.

    I know veggies can get boring and if you’re like me, in the cooler months, salads get less and less enticing, so getting those greens in can be hard. Steaming works, but let’s be real, it can be ‘blah!’ and when you serve ‘blah’ veggies, it’s a fight to get them down and the chances are you aren’t going to do it at every meal.

    These slow cooked greens, bring the flavor and nourishing, healing goodness of the bone broth, we get a little heat from the red pepper flakes and the onion, garlic and lemon, round it all out with classic, simplicity.

    It’s a pretty fuss-free recipe and at the end of it, you get a bowl of goodness that your beautiful body sooo deserves! Every time I share that I am whipping up this recipe on social media, I get so many messages that you want the recipe. So I finally wrote it up to share with you. Just in time for the holidays.

    Read the rest of this entry »

  2. Creamy Paleo Tortilla Soup {Gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free, nut-free}

    This authentic, blended Creamy Paleo Tortilla Soup inspired by a recent trip to the Islands of Loreto in Mexico, gets an update thanks to grain-free cassava tortillas. If you are cool with corn, go for it babe, it’s one simple swap out, either way. The creaminess of the soup comes not from any dairy, but from the crispy tortillas strips being pureed right into the broth with everything else! Skip out on any cheese to make fully paleo or for a more authentic (and primal) version, add cubed or crumbled cotija cheese or queso fresco. Besides additional crispy tortilla strips, we like to serve ours topped with a drizzle of homemade Salsa Macha, avocado, fresh cilantro and a squeeze of lime, Mexican cheese if we’re feeling nasty!

    Creamy Paleo Tortilla Soup

    Creamy Paleo Tortilla Soup

    It’s been a busy couple of months of travel for me, but as usual, I have returned home feeling inspired, refreshed and excited to create. As I have always shared with you guys, getting away and traveling, at times, can be a disruptor to my daily routines, my healthy habits and can sometimes keep me from feeling like my best self. So, as you can imagine I especially love the trips that allow me to maintain my eating preferences, my activity level and fill me up full of magical experiences and ideas to come back and share with all of you.

    Read the rest of this entry »

  3. The First Step to Happy Hormones

    The First Step to Happy Hormones honors the very delicate balance of our endocrine system by treating dysfunction on a foundational level rather than simply managing or masking symptoms. This is the first post in a Hormone-Focused Series from Nutritional Therapy Practitioner Brynn D’Avello.

    The First Step To Happy Hormones

    My favorite books come from the 1800s, (primarily Jane Austen’s novels), but Brontë, Dumas, Tolstoy and Dostoyevsky populate my “pleasure reading” shelves as well. The common outcry of women in literature of that period was, “Oh my poor nerves!” Today’s self-diagnosis is, “My hormones are out-of-whack.” Interestingly, the nervous system and the endocrine (hormone secreting) system work together frequently. Epinephrine and norepinephrine are classified as neurotransmitters and hormones.

    When clients come to me for nutritional help to balance their hormones I tell them that it’s not a simple process and will require work on my part to investigate where the imbalance is originating to know how to support the underlying foundations of their body. It also takes commitment on the part of the client to change their habits. Endocrine function is a system of complex relationships. The goal is to support the entire system, not just to manage the symptoms. Each client has their own unique needs, and it is important to lay the right foundation for digestion, hydration, blood sugar regulation, mineral and fatty acid balance through a nutrient-dense diet.

    What Are Hormones Exactly? 

    Basically, they are chemical messengers that carry information and orders to organs in the body. They are targeted for specific cell receptors around the body and are used to keep your body in homeostasis, or in balance. We all know that hormones are a key component in reproduction, and while many of us probably only think about them in relation to PMS hormones are critical in many other body processes. Other functions hormones are responsible for are regulating metabolism and energy balance, glandular secretions, some immune system activities; they play a part in the contraction of smooth and cardiac muscles; they control growth and development, and help establish circadian rhythms.

    Read the rest of this entry »

  4. Why to Choose Grass-Fed Meat vs Grain-Fed

    Much like some of the other basic nutrition topics we’ve been covering recently, I know for many of you, this information on Why to Choose Grass-fed Meat, it may be old news. Feel free to skip on by and wait for the next post, but if this information is new to you or you want a refresher or to learn more, I got you. As you have heard me say, time and time again, every day, every single day, I encounter people outside my little sheltered food/nutrition bubble, who haven’t yet received this information and knowledge that many of us take for granted, being deeply rooted in our daily food choices for some time. Rather than assuming that everyone already knows this stuff, I would rather create simple posts that are easily accessible to them/you to share, inform and empower you with the knowledge to make better decisions for you and your health. 

    Why to Choose Grass-Fed Meat vs Grain-Fed

    Nutrition

    Not all meat is created equal. But, I am sure most of you know that at this point. As you also know from recents posts here on Tasty Yummies, fat can absolutely be an incredibly nutrient rich part of your diet, but this same macronutrient when of the wrong variety, can also cause numerous diseases, inflammation, digestive issues and more. The diet of the animals we eat, can greatly change the fat in it’s tissues (and consequently the meat that we eat), among other nutritional differences. According to a study 1http://www.csuchico.edu/grassfedbeef/research/Review%20Grassfed%20Beef%202010.pdf conducted by California State University’s College of Agriculture, grass-fed beef nutrition includes significantly more omega-3 fatty acids (2 to 4 times more yhan grain-fed)  and more conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) than grain-fed beef. The ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 in grain-fed meat is much worse than grass-fed and it’s not because the omega-6 content of beef fat skyrockets with grain feeding; it is however because the omega-3 content is basically nonexistent in the grain-fed animals. Due to the modern, standard American diet (SAD), many people are highly omega-3 deficient and therefore the ratio to bad omega-6 fats is severely imbalanced due to it’s prevalence in a SAD, which can lead to a chronic exacerbated inflammatory response, a general state of systemic inflammation, and the development of the various diseases with an inflammatory root.

    Conjugated Linoleic Acid of CLA is a strong polyunsaturated fatty acid that must be obtained from our diets. CLA has been shown to discourage weight gain and build muscle, as well as support metabolic and cellular health by helping to transport fatty acids into the mitochondria and boost immune health. It has even been shown to lower the risk of cancer. 2https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15941017 High-quality grass-fed beef and butter from healthy, grass-fed cows or other animals are the top sources of CLA.

    Grass-fed beef, is also one of the best protein foods around, is also higher in precursors for vitamin A and E and cancer and heart disease-fighting antioxidants compared to grain-fed beef. It is also higher in B vitamins, vitamin K and trace minerals like magnesium, calcium, and selenium. Grass-finished beef has higher proportions of cholesterol neutral stearic fatty acids and less cholesterol-elevating short chain fatty acids, such as myristic and palmitic acid. Grass-fed meat truly shines in the micronutrient profile for one major reason: Grass-fed cows get more nutritious food.

    Why Grass-fed Meat is Healthier

    Ideally these animals are grass-fed for their whole life. Only exclusively grass-fed cows live out their entire lives on grassland. The rest may start their lives on open pasture and are then eventually moved to a feedlot. Often meat being sold as “grass-fed” is an animal that was fed grass for a short time, early in it’s life, but finished with grain, to increase weight gain, to fatten them up and reduce costs and increase profitablity. Just 80 days of grain feeding was enough to destroy the omega-3 content of the beef. CLA content plummeted in the same amount of time. The longer the animals were fed grains, the lower the quality of the meat. This is one of the many reasons that 100% grass-fed or grass-fed and grass-finished should be sought out.

    Read more about the cost of grass-fed meat and how the labeling of grass-fed animals can be downright deceitful.  While the FDA no longer governs this label claim, you should still look for it and additionally look for seals such as American Grassfed or PCO Certified 100% GrassFed for assurance that the claim was verified and means the animals were 100% grass fed and raised on pasture. You can also look for The Certified Grassfed by AGW seal. 3http://greenerchoices.org/2016/12/30/grassfed-general-claim/ Even more reasons to get to know your farmer or rancher and ask the important questions directly to the person that actually knows. As Michael Pollan says “shake the hand that feeds you“!

    Read the rest of this entry »

    References   [ + ]

    1.http://www.csuchico.edu/grassfedbeef/research/Review%20Grassfed%20Beef%202010.pdf
    2.https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15941017
    3.http://greenerchoices.org/2016/12/30/grassfed-general-claim/
  5. Is Your Olive Oil the Real Thing? Terra Delyssa Is.

    Is Your Olive Oil the Real Thing? Terra Delyssa Is.

    Is your olive oil the real thing? Can you trust that what you are cooking with is safe? I know you are all concerned about fake, substandard olive oils. We’ve all seen the news reports and media coverage of the market being flooded with olive oils making big health claims, yet many being found to be mislabeled and adulterated with other substandard oils like soybean or canola – it’s SO important to find an olive oil you can trust. There are so many reasons I choose to cook with Terra Delyssa Olive Oil and why I personally stand behind and recommend it, to my nutrition clients and to you, my readers, as well as my very own family.

    Terra Delyssa does not hide it’s origin. Their olive oils are one of very few that are actually offered to consumers directly by the farmers / producers. Obtained from the first cold press of freshly hand picked olives grown on farms that have been passed on and run for many generations, cultivating and producing Olive Oil, the traditional way, known to the region of Sfax in Tunisia, situated on the Mediterranean coastline.

    Terra Delyssa fully controls their olives from tree to bottle, crushing all of their olives within 24 hours of harvest, testing every single batch in their state of the art laboratory. By honoring of traditional production methods of hand selection and true cold-pressing this keeps the oil’s acidity low, while maintaining it’s high levels of antioxidants and phytonutrients high.

    Read the rest of this entry »

  6. How-to Make Cold Brew Coffee {+ Video}

    Learn How-to Make Cold Brew Coffee with this surprisingly simple process. It takes just three simple steps to the best cold brew you’ll ever have. No super special equipment needed, it’s much more affordable than your local coffee shops and you can customize the strength of your brew to your liking.

    How-to Make Cold Brew Coffee

    How-to Make Cold Brew Coffee

    It has happened slowly over the last year or so, as my body and my health has continued to shift and improve, but I have developed a pretty solid morning habit that involves a quality cup of organic coffee shortly after I rise. I have come to find that this morning routine serves many purposes for me, personally, but most importantly, I find it’s a really beautiful morning ritual, something that I greatly enjoy and always allow myself the space to honor and totally embrace, no matter where in the world I am.

    Often I am asked “is coffee good for you?” As you can probably imagine, my answer to this question is quite similar to how I respond to many other food and health related questions and that is – “it depends”.

    Read the rest of this entry »

  7. Ideas for Camping Meals and Hiking Snacks

    Ideas for Camping Meals + Hiking Snacks

    Ideas for Camping Meals + Hiking Snacks

    I am super excited to share this post with Ideas for Camping Meals and Hiking Snacks from my recent camping trip. Being in Yosemite for 7 days and being responsible for prepping and cooking dinner each night, for 8 – what an absolute honor and a task. Calling upon my knowledge as a Nutritional Therapy Practitioner and bringing my food blogger vibes, all while keeping it easy, accessible and making everyone happy – that may have been one of my favorite food challenges, to date.

    Ideas for Camping Meals + Hiking Snacks

    Obviously (and selfishly) all the food I cooked for the week had to be gluten-free with options for being paleo-friendly, as there were three of us that ate this way. The rest of the group could eat everything, which made it quite easy. Given that the days were filled with epic, day-long hikes, some as long as 14 hours and 22 miles or boot camp style workouts and yoga, I also wanted to be sure I was nourishing everyone adequately and providing high-quality, nutrient-dense food while keeping it affordable and doable given the restricted nature of camp cooking. Also full disclosure, I still wanted to keep it all fun and campy, because after all, camping is a time to relax, let loose and have a good time.

    Below you will find all of the meals I cooked for the week, along with links to recipes where appropriate and info on how I made it happen. At the bottom you will also find some suggestions for hiking and trail snacks, supplements, etc.

    These may not be the best photos, I left my DSLR camera at home and chose to just enjoy the trip and relish in the moments rather than focusing on food styling and perfection. So, instead we have lots of iPhone shots from myself and my girl Natasha of The Feisty Kitchen, who also coincidentally makes a really rad prep and sous chef / partner in crime.

    Read the rest of this entry »

  8. A Guide to Smarter Smoothies

    While smoothies have become a popular meal replacement, snack and all around trendy food, crafted incorrectly you can be consuming a sugar-loaded, blood sugar exploding cocktail. I am excited to share with you A Guide to Smarter Smoothies to hopefully help you understand how to better create the smoothies that are right for you.

    A Guide to Smarter Smoothies

    A Guide to Smarter Smoothies

    If you’ve been reading Tasty Yummies for some time, you probably know that the archives are LOADED with smoothie recipes. Smoothies used to play a much larger role in my daily diet routine, for the longest time it was always my favorite way to start my day. Interestingly at the height of my smoothie consumption, weight loss was definitely a struggle, as were energy crashes and sugar cravings. What I didn’t know back then, but I do know now as a Nutritional Therapy Practitioner, is that without the proper formulation, smoothies are a blood sugar explosion waiting to happen.

    Every time you consume any carbohydrates and sugar containing foods, it causes an increase in blood glucose. How much so is dependent on the food and the individual. Simple sugars more specifically (monosaccharides), those sugars ending in -ose, sucrose, glucose, fructose, lactose, galactose, maltose – these are metabolized especially quickly and can often cause a big surge in insulin.

    Our body’s innate intelligence continually monitors the amount of glucose in our bloodstream to maintain balance and homeostasis. When blood glucose levels increase, the pancreas releases the hormone insulin.  Insulin increases the uptake of glucose by our muscle and fat cells; increases the amount of glycogen in our muscle and liver; increases fatty acid synthesis from excessive carbohydrates; and decreases fat breakdown and mobilization from our fat tissue.

    A Guide to Smarter Smoothies

    How Bad Can a Fruit-Loaded Smoothie Be?

    With a spike in blood sugar, a release of insulin and the impending crash, no matter what food is the initial cause, this can lead to immediate hunger, mid-day cravings, energy crashes, lightheadedness, anxiety, etc. Even worse, if the rest of your day’s eating (and most days) continue on the carb and sugar path, you are absolutely creating a long term problem. Whether you are overweight, struggle with weight loss or notice blood sugar issues or not.

    Day in and day out this roller coaster can lead to a slew of health complications beyond obesity, lethargy and cravings. To simplify the worst of it, constant output of insulin is like the boy that cried wolf, your cells stop responding to the insulin that is constantly being produced and they become resistant, meaning without the insulin to transport the excess glucose to your cells for energy production, blood sugar levels remain high and this is can lead to chronic insulin resistance, pre-diabetes and eventually diabetes.

    These days, I personally prefer to opt for (and I recommend to my clients) the prioritizing of nutrient-dense whole foods, rather than drinkable meals, like smoothies or juice. Whole foods offer the opportunity for maximum nutrient absorption, which allows our digestion to work as intended, and assuming these whole foods aren’t loaded up with carbohydrates and sugar – it’s much easier on your blood sugar.

    That said, in the summer I do find myself with a much different appetite and my cravings differ quite significantly from the cooler months. I am not nearly as ravenous for more robust meals, especially on the hotter days. In the summer months I find myself wanting and craving more smoothies than any other time of the year. Knowing what I know now, my approach to creating them has drastically changed, so today I am going to share with you my Guide to Smarter Smoothies.

    Read the rest of this entry »

  9. Red Velvet Pudding Pops with White Chocolate Drizzle {Dairy-free, Paleo, Vegan}

    In honor of #popsicleweek, I am bringing a traditional cake recipe new life with these tasty Red Velvet Pudding Pops. Of course, there’s a twist. I boosted this sweet treat with nutrient-dense whole foods, so you can have your cake and nutrients and eat it, too!

    Red Velvet Pudding Pops with White Chocolate Drizzle {dairy-free, paleo, vegan}

    Red Velvet Pudding Pops with White Chocolate Drizzle {dairy-free, paleo, vegan}

    It wasn’t too long ago that I snuck a little cauliflower into some popsicles here on Tasty Yummies.  I’m hoping if you tried that recipe, you still trust me and know that despite these strange ingredient combos, I will never lead you astray. It was a fun surprise to find that the cauliflower brought another level to the treat, with creaminess and also of course, nutrients. While I don’t feel that every dessert should have a veggie snuck into it, I do love the unexpected nutritional boost that this provides. And why not?

    So, I am back at it again today with these Red Velvet Pudding Pops. As traditional Red Velvet Cake is simply a subtle amount of cocoa with red food coloring, it’s actually a cake flavor that has forever eluded me. I never really understood it. It’s not chocolate and the red color has nothing to do with flavor. But not too long ago I tried a gluten-free Red Velvet cupcake and I am not gonna lie. I was into it. But, ya know, it was loaded with sugar and grains.  Additionally, red food dye used in baking is almost always derived from Red #40 (Allura Red) an artificial food dye. According to a CSPI report, some of the most commonly used food dyes may be linked to numerous forms of cancer, along with hyperactivity and other behavioral problems in children.1http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2011/02/24/are-you-or-your-family-eating-toxic-food-dyes.aspx The European Union has recently placed regulations on labeling food dyes to inform consumers of the health risks, but the United States has no such requirement.

    Read the rest of this entry »

    References   [ + ]

    1.http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2011/02/24/are-you-or-your-family-eating-toxic-food-dyes.aspx
  10. What You Need to Know About Eggs – Pasture Raised vs Cage-Free vs Free-Range, etc

    Selecting eggs these days can be a bit overwhelming. There’s Free-Range, Organic, Caged, Cage-free, Pasture-Raised. There are brown eggs and white eggs,  Omega-3 enriched eggs. Not only are there significant differences in the animal care with these various types of eggs, but in addition, depending on what the hens themselves ate and their access to sunlight, the end result in the eggs we eat, also show drastic nutritional differences, as well. Read on for What You Need to Know About Eggs. Let’s get right to it:

    What You Need to Know About Eggs - Pasture Raised vs Cage-Free vs Free-Range, etc

    Look at the difference in the color of the yolks from a conventional egg (left), to a pasture-raised egg (right).

    What You Need to Know About Eggs - Pasture Raised vs Cage-Free vs Free-Range, etc

    The Various Labels – What Do They Mean

    Read the rest of this entry »

  11. Don’t Fear the Fat // The Basics

    Don't Fear the Fat

    Why Are We Talking About Fat?

    The reason I write this post, is that even though, for so many us, we have woke to this knowledge and have worked hard to reframe our approach to nutrition and no longer fearing the fat, we still have so much work to do. After many decades of low-fat propaganda, the “fat makes you fat” rhetoric is still so deeply ingrained in the collective psyche. Many people STILL greatly fear fat, even though study after study shows that fat is not only harmless 1http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/early/2010/01/13/ajcn.2009.27725.abstract but that it is in fact, quite necessary to many important functions in the body. I myself see this fear weekly in my nutrition clients, all over the internet and in my social feeds, at the grocery store, at restaurants, at the gym, etc and of course, all of the many side effects of low fat eating – we HAVE to change this dialogue!!

    The Basics

    It is beyond challenging to decide where to even start on such a huge, huge topic. Chatting about dietary fat is a big undertaking and we are going to merely just scratch the surface with this initial post, decoding the myths and where the fat fearmongering began, along with the crucial reasons we need fat in our diet. So, let’s get to the basics.

    First and foremost you need to know that fat is a necessity in our bodies. This vital macronutrient provides building blocks for the brain, hormone and cellular membranes throughout the body, it is essential for the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins like A, D, E and K and it is deeply hydrating!

    By adequately increasing my healthy fat intake, more than any other change I have made in my lifestyle and diet, I have personally seen profound affects on my health, from my digestion to my skin including chronic hormonal and cystic acne, from my moods to my ability to concentrate, hormonal imbalances to libido (YUP!). Fat is a powerful anti-aging food, both internally and externally. Consumed as part of a healthful diet, fatty acids (the building blocks of fat) help stabilize blood sugar – allowing your body to release fat, protect it’s lean muscle, and surge with energy. When our focus is on creating meals that are rich not only in healthy fats, but also quality well-sourced proteins and fibrous green leafy veggies, we can thank especially the healthy fats for keeping us satiated. Staying satisfied for longer means so you won’t find yourself searching for the junky, processed snacks in between these healthy, whole food meals.

    Read the rest of this entry »

    References   [ + ]

    1.http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/early/2010/01/13/ajcn.2009.27725.abstract
  12. Cooking Fats and Oils: Which to Include and Which to Avoid

    Cooking Fats and Oils: Which to Include and Which to Avoid

    Cooking Fats and Oils: Which to Include and Which to Avoid

    Fats and oils are a necessary part of cooking, but using the right ones are down right essential to living a healthy and vital life. Just like rest of what we eat, a good rule of thumb with fats and oils is to always opt for organic and you should avoid overly-processed, highly refined fats and basically anything that your grandmother wouldn’t recognize as traditional food (i.e. basically ALL highly-refined vegetable and seed oils) – but to be frank, there is a lot more to the story! Not only do the types and quality of fats and oils matter – but so does their proper use. Honoring the various smoke points and the molecular structure of the different fats is the best way to insure that you are using them appropriately, without causing damage to the fats and in turn, negative affects on our health.

    Here is a quick resource guide including the various uses for each:

    Read the rest of this entry »

  13. The Benefits of Wild Caught Fish and How to Source it Sustainably

    The Benefits of Wild Caught Fish

    From both an environmental and a nutritional standpoint, supporting sustainably sourced fish is something that matters a great deal to me. Just like meat that comes from properly raised animals that have access to pasture and sunshine, seafood caught using sustainable practices with an awareness for the environment should be a huge priority. From a nutritional standpoint, wild caught fish offers more benefits, like higher levels of beneficial omega-3 essential fatty acids. Of course, the taste and freshness of wild caught isn’t even comparable. Wild caught fish is in a league of it’s own.

    The Benefits of Wild Caught Fish and How to Source it Sustainably

    Wild Caught vs. Farmed

    The ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 fat of wild salmon, is far superior to farmed. Farmed salmon has a 1-1 ratio of omega-3s and omega-6s (due to the “junk food diet” they are fed), while the ratio for wild salmon is generally between 6 and 9 to 1, which is a much more ideal and healthful ratio.

    Wild salmon swim around in the wild, eating what nature intended them to eat. Therefore, their nutritional profile is more complete, with micronutrients, fats, minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants like astaxanthin (which is what gives salmon its pink or red colored, flesh.)

    In my opinion, farmed fish are the aquatic equivalent to factory farmed livestock,  or confined animal feeding operation (CAFO) animals. Farmed fish generally live in very small, crowded quarters – typically pens or cages submerged in lakes, ponds, and other bodies of salt water, but sometimes on land as well. They also produce toxic waste, and fish of inferior quality. These fish are further contaminated by drugs and genetically engineered corn and soy meal feed, and in the case of salmon, synthetic astaxanthin, which is made from petrochemicals that are not even approved for human consumption. Wild caught fish, on the other hand, are caught by fisherman out in their natural habitat 1http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2013/04/15/wild-alaskan-salmon.aspx

    Read the rest of this entry »

    References   [ + ]

    1.http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2013/04/15/wild-alaskan-salmon.aspx
  14. Grain-free Almond Flour Muffins

    Grain-free Almond Flour Muffins {gluten-free, dairy-free, paleo-friendly}

    Grain-free Almond Flour Muffins {gluten-free, dairy-free, paleo-friendly}

    If I had it my way, as a nutritional therapist but also as a true, hardcore lover of substantial, energy-building, savory breakfasts I would LOVE to get all of clients eating a breakfast comprised of quality, well-sourced fats and proteins, with an appropriate amount of carbs coming from some tasty nutrient-dense veggies! But, I get it, I really do. I know most people would rather eat a doughnut, toast, cereal, oatmeal or anything else, sweet, simple and convenient in the mornings. So for me, it’s all about the baby steps and also meeting people halfway with better options than the standard fare.

    I know that mornings are generally a busy time, if you have kids you are getting them ready for school, you are probably packing lunches, getting the kiddos on the bus all while trying to get yourself ready and get out the door to work. Even if you don’t have children, the mornings are generally a very chaotic time and if you don’t plan extra time for cooking, most folks either grab something packaged and convenient or worse yet skip breakfast all together. NOOOOOO! I know that unless you are fortunate enough to work from home, cooking up some pasture-raised eggs and sautéing some greens – that’s probably not in the cards.

    Read the rest of this entry »

  15. 5 Mealtime Tips to Improve Digestion

    Digestive dysfunction is easily the most common chronic ailment I encounter working as a Nutritional Therapist. As a follow-up to my in-depth series Digestion 101, I wanted to offer five, simple actionable steps that you can take right away to immediately begin the improvement of your digestion.

    Digestive dysfunction can have many faces – gas, bloating, stomach aches, indigestion – we’ve all been there. Yes, there are plenty of quick-fix, short term “bandaid” approaches to managing the symptoms, I see so many people that often pop antacids, take anti-gas, diarrhea or constipation meds just to get through the day.  Sadly this only manages the symptoms of a larger problem and more often than not the root cause of the dysfunction is left untreated and the problems still persist.

    Rather than popping pills or difficult, unnatural approaches, here are 5 simple, meal-time tips to improve your digestion, naturally.

    5 Mealtime Tips to Improve Digestion

    Read the rest of this entry »

  16. How-to Make Bone Broth

    Tutorial Tuesdays // Tasty Yummies

    How-to Make Bone Broth

    What is Bone Broth:

    Bone broth truly is one of the greatest superfoods. A soul-warming, healing, mineral-rich infusion found in many traditional households across many diverse cultures, bone broth is rich in amino acids and minerals and it’s healing properties run the gamut. This nutrient-dense, inexpensive magic elixir provides minerals in a highly bio-available form, meaning that the body can absorb easily them. Calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, silicon, sulphur and trace minerals. As the cartilage and tendons breaks down, you’ll also receive chondroitin sulphates and glucosamine, both sold as expensive supplements for arthritis and joint pain. The long cook time of bone broth allows the maximum release of nutrients. Bone broth contains collagen and gelatin, providing great healing value to cartilage and bones but also to the skin, digestive tract, immune system, heart and muscles.

    Bone broth is a liquid made by simmering bones for an extended period of time, between 4 and 24 hours. Any bones can be used: chicken, turkey, beef, lamb, pork, bison and even fish. Vegetables, herbs and spices are often added to enhance the flavor and the bones and vegetables are strained and discarded before serving. Typically, the bones will have some connective tissue, like joints and tendons, and some meat attached.

    Additionally bone broth and stocks is a wonderful way of letting nothing go to waste. The nose-to-tail concept of sustainability.

    You’ve probably heard the terms Bone BrothBroth and Stock all used fairly interchangeably, but there are actually some differences between them. Each is made using meat and/or bones, cold water, vegetables and spices / seasonings. Cooking remains similar but the time of simmering varies between them. Bone broth is different from traditional stocks and broths in that it typically is made just from the bones and whatever small amounts of meat are adhering to those bones. Bone broth is simmered for a very long period of time, upwards of 48 hours. Stock is made generally with bones and a small amount of meat and is simmered for much less time, just several hours, 3-4. Meat broth is generally made mostly with meat and sometimes a small amount of bones, simmering for usually under 2 hours. Meat broth and stock still have great health benefits, however it’s a lower nutrient content then long simmering bone broth. For some, bone broth vs stock also means the presence of meat and veggies vs. just bones. Bone broth usually does not contain these and stock usually does. That said, those clear definitions have definitely blurred as bone broth has become more prevalent and people find their own ways of making it, so don’t get too hung up on the words.

    Read the rest of this entry »

  17. Coconut Chai Fig Smoothie

    Coconut Chai Fig Smoothie

    If you have been reading Tasty Yummies for sometime, you know since moving to California 3 years ago, my infatuation love of figs runs very deep. The beautiful, big fig tree that we were blessed with, when we moved into this home, is one of the most magical gifts mother nature has ever given to me. The fig tree is a actually a long-standing symbol of abundance, fertility and sweetness, which is obviously quite fitting. Boy, does this tree produce in abundance! The only bad thing however, is just how short the season is. It’s over in a flash. Middle of the summer and that’s it.

    While we are still a month or so off from fresh figs, it doesn’t mean that I don’t crave those lusciously sweet fruits. Which is why California dried figs are the very next best thing. Available year round, from Valley Fig Growers, you can stay stocked up on your California dried figs throughout the off-seasons and continue to reap all of the many benefits of this super fruit.

    Read the rest of this entry »

  18. Boosted Horchata

    Boosted Horchata

    Boosted Horchata

    With today being Cinco de Mayo, I was feeling inspired to create just one more Mexican-inspired recipe. But as usual, I couldn’t leave well enough alone and I had to put a little nutritional spin on this one, too. Classic Mexican horchata is obviously crazy delicious on it’s own, there is no denying that, but often it’s loaded with tons of refined sugar and traditionally it’s made with run of the mill rice and almonds – so, there really isn’t much nutrition happening here. What else could I do except boost it?

    This recipe takes a little time to prepare and you may need to do a little searching to find the right ingredients, but none of it’s difficult and I can tell you, it’s more than worth it. The end product is delightful. Full of creamy, rich, sweet and spicy flavor and depending on how you boost it, tons of health-containing goodness, too.

    Read the rest of this entry »

  19. Digestion 101: A North to South Process // Part 5: The Large Intestine

    Digestion 101: A North to South Process // Part 5: The Large Intestine

    1000px-Digestive_system_diagram_en

    Digestion 101: A North to South Process

    Here we are, at the end of the road. The large intestine is the final step in the process of digestion. By this point you probably more than understand the concept of digestion being a north to south process. We have talked about it at length starting first the brain and the mouth, and the importance of being in a parasympathetic state and properly chewing your foods, then of course the stomach and the dire need for proper hydrochloric acid production, how the accessory organs, the pancreas, liver and gallbladder  continue the process of digestion, releasing bile, enzymes, various hormones and allowing the small intestines to finish digestion but more importantly do it’s very important job of assimilating nutrients and finally last but not least, the large intestine.

    See Part One: The Brain and The Mouth

    See Part Two: The Stomach

    See Part Three: The Accessory Organs: Pancreas, Gallbladder and Liver

    See Part Four: The Small Intestine

    How it Should Work

    The large intestine, or the bowel, is compromised of 3 sections, the cecum, colon and the rectum. The leftover chyme from the small intestines, passes through the illeocecal valve and first into the ascending colon. At this point in a healthy digestive system, what is left as chyme (the digested food) after the small intestines, is indigestible fibers, lots of water, sloughed off cells and bile. The large intestine is all about absorption and recycling.

    As in the esophagus and the small intestine, the contents of the large intestine are pushed forward by a sequence of muscular contractions called peristalsis (a type of motility or muscular movement). After passing through the illececal valve the remains travels from the ascending colon, across the transverse colon where waste forms, into the descending colon, to the sigmoid colon and then the stool moves out of the body.

    Read the rest of this entry »

  20. My Path to Becoming a Certified Nutritional Therapy Practitioner – Months 5 & 6

    My Path to Becoming a Certified Nutritional Therapy Practitioner - Month 1

    My Path to Becoming a Certified Nutritional Therapy Practitioner – Months 5 & 6 

    This post continues to share my journey of becoming a Nutritional Therapist with the Nutritional Therapy Association, covering Months 5 and 6, February and March. To read more about how I came to selecting this program and to read about Month 1 of the program, see my first post. To read about months 2 and 3, read my second post and to read about month 4 read my third post.

    Month 5

    The fifth month of this program was by far the most challenging for me, the content continued to roll in and simultaneously we were preparing for our mid-term examinations, the first weekend of March. Being a self proclaimed perfectionist I wanted to ace the exams, while of course, I also really wanted all of the content to be very clear to me. That meant lots of studying, lots of flash cards, memorizing and generally freaking myself out! It worked! I missed one tiny little thing on my written mid-term examination and had 1/2 point taken off on my functional evaluation practical exam. ACED!

    Month 6

    The first weekend of month 6 was our second workshop weekend, 4 long days. First we had our exams and then we spent the remainder of the weekend going over the content we had covered since our last meeting as well as continuing to practice the functional evaluations (you can read more about function evaluations here). After the workshop weekend we were on term break for just under 1 month. Read the rest of this entry »

  21. Digestion 101: A North to South Process // Part 4: The Small Intestine

    Digestion 101 // Part 4: The Small Intestine

     

    1000px-Digestive_system_diagram_en

     

    Digestion 101: A North to South Process

    As we continue more south in digestion, after first the brain and the mouth, then the stomach we move from the first part of the small intestines, the duodenum and it’s interaction with the accessory organs, the pancreas, liver and gallbladder and into the function of the small intestine.

    After we leave the duodenum, the small intestine is less about the actual process of digestion, from a sense of breaking down the food we eat and it is more about the assimilation and absorption of nutrients.

    The first part of the small intestines, the duodenum, acts more as a part of the stomach than the small intestine and the jejunum, ileum and villi are responsible for assimilation.

    See Part One: The Brain and The Mouth

    See Part Two: The Stomach

    See Part Three: The Accessory Organs: Pancreas, Gallbladder and Liver

    Digestion 101 // Part 4: The Small Intestine
    How it Should Work

    The small intestines have a dual role as an organ and a gland.

    As we talked about in the previous post, The Accessory Organs – The Pancreas, Gallbladder and Liver, the small intestine releases mucous to keep things moving and it also releases two hormones: secretin and cholecystokinin.

    Secretin stimulates the pancreas to release bicarbonate to lower the pH of the chyme and pancreatic juice. The CCK stimulates the gallbladder to release bile (to read more about these processes please see post #3).

    By the time that the chyme has left the duodenum, thanks to the processes of the accessory organs, the chyme should be almost entirely digested.

    • The carbohydrates have been broken down into glucose molecules
    • Proteins are broken down into amino acids and polypeptides
    • Fats are broke down into fatty acids and glycerol molecules

    Peristalsis, a series of wave-like muscle contractions moves these absorbable molecules into the jejunum and the ileum, the middle and end parts of the intestine.

    Within the small intestines, we have millions of villi, tiny finger-like projections that protrude from the epithelial lining of the small intestines. These villi and their microvilli absorb the nutrient molecules directly into the bloodstream, where they are carried throughout the entire body.

    Read the rest of this entry »

DISCLAIMER: This website is written and produced for informational and educational purposes only. Statements within this site have not been approved by the FDA. Content should not be considered a substitute for professional medical expertise. The reader assumes full responsibility for consulting a qualified health professional before starting a new diet or health program. Please seek professional help regarding any health conditions or concerns. The writer(s) and publisher(s) of this site are not responsible for adverse reactions, effects, or consequences resulting from the use of any recipes or suggestions herein or procedures undertaken hereafter.