Probiotic Shots November 30 2016
There are days that you just don’t want to eat sauerkraut or kimchi to get your probiotics. These probiotic shots will fit perfectly into your daily schedule
Turn your fresh vegetable juice or bottled vegetable juice into fermented tonics. And the best part: it has the same potent nutrients as a fermented pickle. It takes only minutes to create a batch of Probiotic Shots: just water, salt, juice and brine left over from lacto-fermented pickles. (or if you don’t have any made – buy a jar at a health food store for your starter – or make a jar of pickles first – it only takes 5 days – instructions in the package cookbook.
This is simply the easiest form of fermenting using the Perfect Pickler®.
- Morning juice boost: "coconut water, carrot, or tomato juice anyone?"
- Sport drink replacement, rich with electrolytes to ease muscle cramping
- Smoothie booster—turn on your drink with a shot
- Pet food supplement at the ready
- Salad dressing/condiment booster
- Cocktail mixer and punch base
- Cold, flu, and sore throat gargle
- Relief for indigestion and heartburn
- Tonic while on antibiotics and convalescing
Prep Time: 5 mins Jar Size: 1 quart/.9 L
- 16 oz. vegetable juice (see favorites below)
- 16 oz. Filtered Water
- 1 TBS. Celtic Sea Salt® or other premium brand of mineral salt
- 2 TBS. saved brine from previous batch of lacto-fermented vegetables or tonic
- Combine all ingredients and pour into a 1 quart jar until almost full.
- Float brine overflow cup on top of juice.
- Twist on Perfect Pickler® lid until just hand snug.
- Pour tap water into airlock to the max line and gently twist into lid.
- Place in cool location (68-74 degrees) and wait patiently for 4 days!
- Remove fermenting kit, seal and refrigerate.
FAVORITES: Very Veggie Tomato Medley, Carrot Juice
Caveat: Fermented vegetable juice is best used in small "shot" doses, 1 or 2 oz. will give you great benefit. There is no science that states "if a little is good, a whole lot more is better." A quart will last you approximately one month.
Post Election Anxiety and Fear November 09 2016
Whether you are a democrat and are nervous, stressed and pissed off at the outcome or you are a republican and are quietly questioning whether Trump can make the changes he spoke of, I think we are all in a state of fear. How the fear affects you may be different than others.
I began to feel my entire chest tighten as soon as I got to the voting polls yesterday and it continued to tighten further all day. I was busy teaching all day long which didn’t allow me to think this feeling through logically. This morning I woke up and wondered why I didn’t go straight to my herb cabinet yesterday. The message I received as I thought it through was that I needed to have that feeling straight up, but today I’m ready to open my chest, relax, make some big shifts and I wanted to share some of the ideas I had this morning with you.
This summer I made a lot of flower essences and have the bottles in a box. I took the box out a little while ago, didn’t look at any of the labels on them and energetically tested them all to see which ones would be good for me. 3 of them gave me very high positives. I grabbed the 3 of them without looking at the labels, brought them to my desk and what do you know – they were lavender, and 2 different rose varieties.
I put one drop of each in my water and literally in about 5 minutes I could feel my chest relax. Pretty cool. So, what can you do if you don’t have homemade flower essences? You can try the following Bach flower essences
- How about some Rescue Remedy. It’s a calming essence. You can find it at any health food store. Just a drop or two will help calm your body down. Want more specific, look right below
- Aspen is for anxiety about the future
- Mimulus is for anxiety about the past
- Elm is for overwhelming anxiety
- Rock Rose is for anxiety that escalates into panic
I also put together 2 tincture bottles of herbs to take over the next week to re-balance my nervous system which is being knocked out by the fear and anxiety I’m feeling and I’m guessing you are also feeling.
The first I made was just motherwort. You can purchase motherwort tincture either at a health food store or get it at amazon Motherwort is an amazing calming herb. It calms and soothes panic and anxiety. I’ve seen it take someone out of a panic attack in moments. Its’s not an herb that will make you sleepy and its not an herb that you need to take for weeks to get its effect. Motherwort needs to be taken in a tincture form, capsules are not very effective and the tea is so bitter that I don’t know anyone that would drink it, but just 5-20 drops of motherwort tincture will help calm you down quickly.
The second formula mix I put together for myself consisted of hawthorn berries, blue vervain and linden. Let me tell you a little bit about these and why I chose them, afterwards I’ll list a few other herbs that you can try for yourself. Realize that with herbs there is not just one size fits all. We all need to figure out which herbs work best for ourselves.
Hawthorn berries – hawthorn berries make your tea sweet, they are a wonderful cardiovascular tonic for people whether they have high or low blood pressure, but why I chose to add hawthorn berry to my formula today is that it is a wonderful remedy for a jittery heart. A heart that feels very tight and needs to slowly open to what is occurring in our country. I use hawthorn berries very often. I love them added to my overnight nettles infusion as they add some sweetness and thorniness to my nettles. If you’ve ever seen a hawthorn tree it has what I call big ass thorns. I remember one year I was harvesting berries with a friend and we were chatting away about something and I had a huge thorn puncture me right between my thumb and pointer finger. I stopped immediately and got the message that if I was picking the hawthorn berries I needed to pay attention to the hawthorn tree and not chat away. So the message today seems to be that we need to focus on what is and not on what we thought could happen and let hawthorn bring both a little sweetness and thorniness our way.
Blue vervain - I love blue vervain as a nervine (an herb that calms down my nervous system without working as a sedative) It tends to work more for people who carry their stress in their neck and shoulders vs their gut (for those who carry it in their gut chamomile or catnip is a good choice) A great article on vervain was written by Kiva Rose that you may enjoy. Click here.
Linden – Linden is not only a relaxing herb, but it helps to release grief. If you are feeling grief due to the election, a great solution is either some linden tincture or a cup of linden tea. Linden is also called Tilia so you may be able to find it in a health food store or I recently found it in my grocery store that caters to a big Hispanic population.
There are so many herb for you to choose, I may make some oatstraw infusion later. You can choose rose, holy basil and so many more. But for now just choose something to help you re-balance your stress and nervous system so you can stop being stuck in something that just is.
Take a walk, go take a yoga class or get a massage. Allow the stressful feelings to leave your body.
I wish you a stress free month. I wish you a month filled with thankfulness for yourself, your family, the country and the universe.
What Makes You Happy? May 26 2016
What makes you happy? What would you do everyday that would establish a stress free state for you? If you could play at something every day, what would it be, leave me a comment below, tell me what you would do.
So the image to the left is a Rosa rugosa.(the pink one) A variety of roses that has the most amazing scent. You can smell it approx 15 feet before you even get to the plant. I noticed this yesterday and to be honest with you, there are only about 5 blossoms in total that are out so far and they have such an awesome smell. yummmm.
One of my absolutely favorite things to do with either the rosa rugosa or the wild roses that will be blooming soon is to make a Rose Glycerite.
When you choose roses to make your glycerite with, preferably choose fresh ones, if you can't, you can get some organic dried roses. Make sure that the roses you are picking have not been sprayed, and that they smell delicious. (I have some organic roses on my property that are beautiful, like the image to your left but it has no scent). Then you take your rose petals off the flower and fill a small jar. Then purchase some vegetable glycerin. I get mine at my local health food store. Fill your jar again with vegetable glycerin, poke it with a knife or a chopstick to get rid of all the air bubbles, cover it, let it sit for 6 weeks, then strain out your rose petals and you'll have a beautiful glycerite. Just talking one or two drops will taste delicious and help let go of the stress you are holding in your heart.
Here's an image of my herbs. The sage that has been around for a few years is so happy. I hope you have the space, even if its only a pot outside of herbs, to be able to go outside and pick some fresh herbs to use in your cooking. Maybe you have them just because they make you smile.
Please let me know if there are specifics you'd like me to write on this growing season and either email me direct or post below.
So many are living in unhealthy bodies feeling like crap. If you are ready to change your state, use good nutrition and simple herbs to heal your body, let's talk. It's all about talking control.
Bonnie specializes in working with stress & anxiety, digestive disorders, menopause, sexual pain and dryness and so much more.
Click here to set up a Free 15 minute Get Acquainted session
Bone broth ............. what is it and why is it so good for you?
Let's begin our conversation on why I think of bone broth as "Liquid Gold" or my "Magic Elixer". When I drink bone broth daily (1-3 cups per day) I feel amazing. My joint pain fades, my skin looks great and my energy becomes really balanced. What does bone broth do for your body:
- Helps heal leaky gut
- Improves joint health
- Increases the immune system
- Improves your skin, hair and nail health
Bones are nutrient dense and make delicious soup but they take a long time to cook. The low heat simmering allows the nutrients in the bones to be released into your soup. Some of these nutrients are proline, glycine and glutamine.
Bone broth is filled with tons of minerals and nutrients that are easily assimilated by your body. Nutrients such as glucasame and chrondoitin sulfate, yes the same thing you buy in a pill. Bone broth reduces inflammation in the respiratory and digestive system, improves the immune system and just plain makes you feel great.
As we get older the collagen in our bones, skin and hair wears. Think about a baby, how soft and flexible not only their skin is, but also their bones. It is filled with collagen. How would it be to have a little bit of that flexibility back in your skin and bones? Just drinking a few cups a day of bone broth will do a lot to increase your health.
As shown below, adding nettles to your broth increases its nutritional load even more.
What kind of bones do you use and how do you make it?
Bone broth can be made with chicken, turkey, beef, fish, or any other bones you have. My favorite is chicken and I make a batch of it almost weekly. My recipe for chicken bone broth is below. Can you use just any chicken bones? Sure, but do you really want to? If I'm going to be taking the nutrition out of the bones and infusing it into my soup I want my bones to be super healthy. I want them to be grass fed, pastured, and organic.
I had a hard time finding bones that fell into this category, especially when my husband prefers that we use not only pastured and organic, but also kosher. I found the only kosher pastured and grass fed site out there, I believe. I purchase my bones from www.kolfoods.com The soup comes out fabulous and it is so convenient. When I purchase bones (I get enough for five 1 gallon batches at a time) it costs me approx. $95 including shipping. - I have an extra freezer to store them. (so whether you eat kosher or not, this is a great source for you and the soup comes out super delicious.)
My recipe and directions for Chicken Bone Broth
Ingredients: (preferably all organic)
- 1 package 1.5 lbs chicken necks
- 1 package 2.5 lbs chicken bones (backs)
- 2 T apple cider vinegar
- 3 sticks astragalus (optional)
- a small handful kelp - (my favorite sources are http://theseaweedman.com/ or http://ryandrum.com) optional
- 3 carrots - cut up
- 3 stalks celery - cut up
- 2 parsnips - cut up if I can find them in the store and or a celeriac root
- 2 big onions - quartered with the skin on
- 2 T apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 lb fresh shiitake mushrooms - or the equivalent dried- optional, but gives the soup an awesome taste
- Put 1 gallon filtered water in your pot
- Put your chicken necks and bones in the pot (note: I keep them in frozen and drop them right in the pot when they are frozen as they defrost fast as the water begins to boil) Can you use a whole chicken, yes, but take the meat off the bones after a few hours (realize that one chicken won't have near as many bones as the way I recommend)
- add your apple cider vinegar
- Bring the soup to a boil and then put on a very, very low light (or you can do this in a crock pot if you have one)
- Add the rest of your vegetables.
- Let cook for 12 -24 hours on a very low heat, covered so you don't evaporate much of the "liquid gold" Mine comes out great after 12 hours
- strain all of the bones and veggies out of the broth - I just use a big pasta strainer into another pot to strain.
- store in mason jars in the refrigerator - the 1/2 gallon ones work great
- after they have been in the refrigerator overnight, scrape off the fat
- freeze what you aren't going to use within 5 days
My favorite way to Eat my bone broth
- just heat up a cup and enjoy it
- cook up some greens, add them to the soup to simmer for 5 minutes, put them in your Vitamix, Nutribullet, or any blender with a splash of heavy cream (or coconut milk) and yummmmm enjoy
- my favorite way this spring is to use fresh Nettles greens. However you can use kale, spinach, I've never tried using dried nettles, but I bet if you threw them into your soup they would be delicious
Fresh young nettles are filled with nutrients, minerals, vitamins, amino acids and lots of protein. Nettles are packed with calcium, magnesium, chlorophyll and so many more minerals. Frequent use of nettles helps to stabilize blood sugar, reduce fatigue and restore your adrenals and kidneys.
Make sure to cook them before you eat them or, yes, Stinging Nettles will sting you. Nettles are covered in tiny, hollow, needle-like hairs filled with formic acid that irritates people’s skin, producing red, stinging, burning welts that can last for hours. Cooking, drying, or freezing nettles renders them safe to eat though.
As I was driving in my town the other day I found an enormous field of nettles growing. How amazing it is. I harvested some to use in my soup and to dehydrate for tea and when I went back to get more I couldn't even find where I had harvested as they are growing "like weeds" this time of year.
Remember the plants want us to use them. They want to help infuse our body with their medicine so don't be afraid to use them.
Find someone in your community that will help you to identify the proper species of herb to use and make sure you are harvesting in an area that is not sprayed with chemicals.
If you're local and want to learn more about herbal medicine, we just began our spring series, contact me privately and we can talk.
Leave me a comment below on your experience with bone broth and let me know how yours comes out.
Invasion of the Healthy Dandelions April 19 2016
When the dandelions begin popping out I know spring is really here and all the plants will be popping soon.
Why do I love dandelions? Dandelions are tenacious, persistent, resilient and radiant. Think about it, every year you try to get rid of the dandelion plants in your yard and unless you spray poisonous chemicals on them, they are back! Even, many of the chemicals people spray don’t stop the amazing dandelion from reappearing.
Dandelions are a tough plant who is known for its ability to survive almost anything, live anywhere (look at the image below, this dandelion grew between the blacktop of my driveway and the concrete under my garage door, no dirt is even visible)
Dandelions are tough cookies. Have you ever tried to pull a dandelion and inevitably the end of the root breaks off. Her roots extend way into the ground.
Dandelions are so helpful for people who are very intense, for people who are hard-working, over-stressed and tend to be irritable; people who do really well with dandelion cram too much into one day, they are impulsive “doers”, they overdue everything and tend to forget about their bodies. They need to let go, just like the puff ball of seeds that the dandelion spreads out. Think about the child as they pick a puff of dandelion seeds and blow them away. Next year that dandelion has many children.
As you look at a field of yellow dandelion flowers, you can feel the energy she has. Dandelion remedies work directly to relax and cleanse the liver which is where over-driven people tend to store their anger and frustration. Dandelion helps relieve tension and allows you to slow down slightly and take the time to listen to your own body.
Dandelion is not only an abundant plant – it is a very affordable one. This time of year (especially in the northeast) just look outside and she will make you smile.
Don’t get me wrong, you can purchase dandelion remedies from me and many herbal apothecaries, but really, this year you can make your own, inexpensive, amazingly powerful herbal medicine.
Dandelion Flower - The beautiful dandelion flower is helpful for clearing winter gunk from your liver and help you have a gentle cleanse. The flower is very pain relieving, especially when you make an infused oil with it.
I’ve worked with women with MS with painful legs that dandelion oil helped as a pain reliever and muscle relaxer. (sometimes we mixed it with yarrow oil)
The infused oil has a special affinity for cystic breasts and allows you to free up old emotions. Just massage some oil on your breasts each evening.
I love making dandelion flower vinegar. It’s tasty, is a great liver cleanser helping get rid of old anger you may be holding. The vinegar is great for using in your bone broth, a salad dressing, or just putting a little over your cooked greens to allow you to take more of the calcium into your body.
So, let’s begin with how you can make your own simple herbal medicine:
How to make dandelion flower vinegar:
1. Pick your dandelion flowers, just the flowers, not the stems and you can put a few leaves in your jar if you want
2. Fill a jar with them (I used a quart ball jar, but use whatever size you want, in my classes we usually make 4 oz. jars) pack them in lightly
3. Now fill your jar with apple cider vinegar. I prefer using organic but some people prefer using plain old Heinz, either will work. Fill it all the way to the top
4. Cover your jar with a plastic cap, if possible or put a layer of saran wrap at the top so the metal top doesn’t mess with the vinegar.
5. Leave in a cabinet for 6 weeks - make sure you label your jar. Strain when its done and enjoy it.
How to make Dandelion Flower Oil
Pick your dandelions and put them on a tray in your house for 12 hours to wilt. If you put the fresh dandelion flowers in your jar with oil, they will turn rancid as they are too moist.
After 12-24 hours, you can use one of the following methods to make your oil
Non heated way
1.Stuff your jar with the wilted flowers
2. Fill with olive oil
3. Stir so any air bubbles disappear
4. Every few days open and stir to make sure there is no water in it
6. If you want to make a salve out of it, just warm it up in a double boiler, add 1 oz of beeswax to 4 oz of oil , pour it into a jar and you’ll have a beautiful salve.
7. I personally like it as an oil
Fast heated way
Dandelion flower essence – Last year was the first year I made a dandelion flower essence and it’s fabulous. It works on a spiritual level to help those overworked individuals to relax. Struggle with tight, sore muscles when you are tense? It helps those who have physical problems with liver and gallbladder or experience old anger and rage. (sometime this spring/summer I’ll do an article about how you can make your own flower essence)
I'd love to hear what you've done with yours, leave me a comment below
Spring is here - lets let go of Self-Sabotage! March 30 2016
Have you ever felt that you were in a self-sabotage zone? You finally were on the right path, everything was going smoothly and POW you were heading back to where you didn’t want to be. I think we’ve all felt like this at some point, but how do you then take this and turn it around.
So, you may be wondering why I chose this subject to write on today. Many of you that have been following me know that 2 ½ years ago I had a cerebral hemorrhage. I found it extremely hard to tell anyone about this because, well, I’m an alternative health practitioner and how could that happen to me?
Well, things happen for reasons that we don’t always know. For me, I believe the cerebral hemorrhage was a wake-up call to pay more attention to me. It was a wake-up call to pay attention to my own health, especially to my weight. I firmly believe that the universe gives you messages, and if you listen closely you will hear it.
This was a Very Loud Message.
Yes, I did eat healthy, but I’m sure I ate way too much of my healthy food and didn’t always make the best choices. Realize that just because a food sounds or looks healthy, it may not be the proper choice for you. Your body is not the same as another person. True health comes from the slowing down and learning how to listen and pay attention to your own body. So, pretty much right after my health emergency was over, I put myself on an eating plan to release the excess weight I was holding onto. It worked, after about 9 months I released almost 50 lbs. and felt amazing. Sure, I still had another 30-40 lbs. that I wanted to let go of, but still I began to feel fabulous in my own body.
I was exercising, making good food choices for me, taking my herbs and feeling fantastic. This lasted a little over and year and Then POW! … I realized I had stopped going to the gym; I wasn’t making the right food choices for me and my weight was beginning to creep back on.
8 lbs. doesn’t sound like a lot of weight. However, when all of a sudden you realize that you are not on the path you had set out to accomplish, you realize you are going backward in your progress and you realize the goals you had set for yourself aren’t working anymore, you need to re-evaluate.
Now, this is not necessarily about weight, it could be about any goal you have set for yourself. What creates Your Self-Sabotage?
I truly believe that we all make decisions because they make us feel something. That something could be a good thing or a bad thing. As I began to try to make sense out of this, I realized that the work I’ve been doing with my clients and students has been the best work I’ve ever done and I believe I just plain forgot to save a little of this focus for me.
Comfort food became king. I had been on a grain free, sugar free food plan along with utilizing my own protocol of how to eat less, and all of a sudden I realized I’d been eating gluten free bread, rice, fruit and not being as strict as I used to be about sugar and exercise.
So, let me digress and say HAPPY SPRING! To me, spring Is all about new beginnings. It’s about new growth. As March began in NY, the plants began springing out of the ground weeks before they normally do. I believe that as the plants come up, we need to take our clues from nature. It’s time for us to take control of our bodies and create new ideas and new growth. It’s time to step away from winter, from a time of dormancy and stagnation. Let’s get back to using nature as our guide.
OK, so in NY, the plants are popping up. The chickweed, nettles and dandelion greens are out. I’ve seen garlic mustard, violet and lots more. No more winter comfort food, it’s time to Take Action.
So what’s the plan now? Back to NO MORE Self Sabotage! It’s time to lighten up, bring more greens back into my food plan and stop the grains.
I’m now back to my green smoothies, juicing occasionally, eating salads filled with the wild greens and back to the Paleo lifestyle that I know works for me. (It may not be the best plan for you, but it's what works for me)
Use nature as a guide, get out more, get your hands dirty in the soil, let me dirt relax and heal you. My best relaxation is to get in my garden, what about you?
Next week I’ll be posting my recipe for a delicious bone broth with nettles and soon afterwards my yummy wild greens pesto. Watch for them.
I’d love to hear what you are doing to eliminate the self-sabotage in your life.
Healthy Hot Chocolate – What a treat December 10 2015
ESTROGEN decreases as we approach menopause (or if we are on certain medications, chemotherapy, tamoxifen and more).
For many women this drop in estrogen produces dryness, not just in the vaginal area but all over. These women begin seeing dry skin, dry eyes and dry everywhere in between. Hormones, they control so much of our body; so what can we do to in order to moisturize our vaginal area and the rest of our body.
So What’s a woman to do?
Some suggestions I have found helped myself and many of my clients. Please feel free to leave me any comments below with questions.
Increase the fat you eat. Yes eat fat! Our society tells us to go on a low fat diet because they feel that low cholesterol numbers are best. But what isn’t taken into consideration is that our hormones need fat to build themselves, our brain needs fat for the production of the myelin sheathe which is basically the insulation around the nerves in the brain and our sex hormones (what’s left of them) need fat to produce just the tiny amount that may be left. What’s the best fat for us to be including in our diets:
- Coconut oil – use it internally and externally – its great as a moisturizer, I now use it as my “hair product” for my curly hair, cook with it, make snacks with it – feel free to ask me for recipes.
- Olive oil
- Evening primrose oil
- Fish oil – make sure its from a clean source (This is my favorite company and I personally use the OmegaAvail. If you purchase through here, use coupon code HEALTH20% for a 20% discount)
- Avocado – try for one per day
- Whole milk organic yogurt . – raw or grass fed if you can find it
- Stay away from vegetable oils like corn, safflower, canola.
Relax – stress can make this worse. There are so many ways to relax, but when you are in crisis, relaxation becomes much harder to achieve. Our brains become stuck on what is causing our anxiety, whether its something in the home, business or just this mess of vaginal dryness. What can we do?
- Meditation – even 5 minutes of slow deep breathing can take you to a place of relaxation
- Epsom salt baths – treat yourself to 20 minutes in a hot tub with 2 cups of Epsom salt. Epsom salt is really just magnesium that is entering the largest organ in your body, your skin, to relax and moisturize your body. I always love my bath time.
- Magnesium – speaking of magnesium. I have an entire blog on magnesium click here
- Herbal remedies can make a huge difference. Here are a few that may help (I love creating custom formulas so let me know if I can help.)
- Motherwort – stops the panic you may be feeling and for the most part just a few drops (not droppers) will change your state within a few moments
- Scullcap – will help turn off the mind movies – you know that time when you think of everything else when you want to be focusing on something else. Dosages vary many find 5 drops is enough, I use a full dropper.
- Chamomile Tea – relaxes your body, especially the gut and allows you to relax. Steep your chamomile 3-10 minutes and drink a cup or two
- Lemon balm – great alone or mixed with your chamomile. Allows the relaxation to happen very gently
- Oatstraw infusion- my favorite. What is an infusion? Steeping oatstraw for 10 minutes will give you flavored water. If you want a mineral infused drink take 1 oz of oatstraw, add 1 quart of boiling water to a 1 quart mason jar, cover and steep on your counter overnight (4-8 hours). Many find that along with the relaxation it brings, it helps to bring moisture back to the vaginal area.
- Organic Lube – Do you know what’s in the lube you are currently using? This product that you apply to the tender tissues in your vaginal area, are you aware of what may be in it? So many products are filled with toxic chemicals, petrochemicals, hormones, GMO’s, synthetic perfumes, parabens and more. They are not just going on your body, they are going in your body. Make sure you know what you are using. I personally likeSex Butter and Boudoir Butter. It is an organic lubrication alternative that helps me along with many of my clients. Isn’t it time you felt sexy and pain free again?
- Leave a small jar of coconut oil in your bathroom – applying just a tiny amount of the coconut oil right after you go to the bathroom, each time if you can, will keep your vaginal area moister than it was. If you are one of the women that the dryness is not just for sex but its all the time, this will be a big solution for you.
- Calendula or comfrey salve Either of these will work to moisturize the area and alleviate the pain you may feel as dryness and tightness. Neither of these are products I use for sex but they would be great for in between. I find they tend to get a little messier than I personally like. I make an amazing healing Calendula cream that is filled with Calendula, coconut oil, aloe and that’s almost all that’s in it and its great for a day application or in the evening prior to bed but again, it may be messy and not too tasty or edible as you may want. (I’m beginning an herbal program probably in January and will teach you to make the calendula cream)
- Chaste berry (Vitex agnes) – Chaste berry seems to help many women in re-balancing their hormones, especially during peri-menopause. However, if you are like me, watch out and stay away. Many years ago I was at an herbal conference and went to a seminar on chaste berry and it sounded to me as a perfect herb. I purchases some at the conference and proceeded to get a headache. I didn’t connect the headache to the herb, I got home and for 3 days nothing and I mean nothing would get rid of that headache. On the third night I woke up with a start and believed that I had once read something about the connection of headaches and Vitex. Right I was, I went into my office in the middle of the night, found the paperwork I had about it causing headaches in a small minority of women, unfortunately, I was one of them. Stopped the Vitex, bye bye headache. So sometimes you will find that you react to an herb, do your research, it may be that you are the iminority that reacts.
The bottom line is that there are so many herbs that help in re-balancing hormones and dryness in the body. I put a few herbs here that may help you. If you’re looking for a custom formulation, let me know as this is the best way to balance your body.
We are all different, but what you may not know is that less thank 3% of women even tell their doctor that they are living with this dryness, they feel that there is something wrong with them and they are living with this dryness. Don’t allow yourself to suffer, it’s just a part of life for many women and there is nothing wrong with you. You are Perfect just the way you are. Your intimate life should only get better as you age, there’s no worry about getting pregnant, so let’s get rid of the dryness issue for you.
When's the Last Time you Really RELAXED? July 13 2015
What does your “normal” weekend look like?
- Do you stop working at 5pm on Friday?
- Does your brain let go of your office work until you walk in on Monday morning?
- Do you allow yourself to relax?
Saturday I actually sat in the pool and just allowed myself to think about nothing. When’s the last time you did that?
Sunday morning I sat in bed thinking I need to take a shower and instead I sat in a hot Epsom bath and read a book – not a book that was about work, herbs or anything that made me “think”. I read a romance novel and just let go of everything. Sometimes its about relaxing your entire body.
So many times when Sunday night comes I’m already working in my brain, last night I just read a little and watched the last episode of Orange is the New Black. It felt really good just “being”
What I found this morning, after a great workout, was that I feel amazing. I’m ready to help others on their healing path and my body is ready to give again.
Are you someone like me that generally keeps giving, giving and giving more and that you have no time for you?
So, let’s try something new this week.
Find one thing each day that you do just for you.
- It could be taking a walk
- How about a quiet bath – add a few cups of Epsom salt
- Make yourself a special meal
- Drink more water – ½ your body weight in oz. watch how good you feel
- Find a special tree and sit down while leaning on the tree, spend a few minutes just breathing in the tree energy
- Play in your garden
- Find something special that makes you happy
Begin drinking some relaxing, nutritious herbal infusions
- Oatstraw – 1 oz per 1 quart of water, steep overnight – will help relax your body and infused it with minerals
- Nettles – will put amazing energy back in your body
- Hawthorn berries to rebalance your heart and circulatory system
To relax your body
- How about a nice quick cup of Holy Basil (Tulsi) tea. You can find the Organic India tea bags in many health food stores
- A few drops of skullcap or motherwort
This week begin to love you. Love who you are, love your body and love your life. When we shift our thoughts we can make big changes. When you learn to love yourself everything will shift.
I’d love to hear your comments below on just one thing you will do for you.
Growing up a treat was always to have pickles or sauerkraut and I was told it was good for you. Little did I know that the sauerkraut and pickles I was eating were delicious but they were not a healing food.
To tell you the truth, I probably wouldn’t have cared at that point in my life. Fast forward many years and I’ve since discovered that the eating lacto fermented foods can heal not only your digestive tract but they can build your immune system, and reverse many diseases. So why isn’t everyone eating them?
My “gut” tells me that most people have no idea that there is a difference between the pickles or sauerkraut that you can get in the supermarket vs the lacto fermented vegetables you can purchase (in a few places) or make in the privacy of your own kitchen.
So what really is the difference?
- Lacto fermented vegetables are filled with probiotics that help our gut digest and assimilate our food
- Lacto fermented foods are raw and without any chemicals added
- Lacto fermented food has no vinegar in it
- Store bought pickles and fermented food like sauerkraut are generally pasteurized, have chemicals in them, sugar, vinegar and more
- Store bought pickled food has little if any live probiotics in them
When reading the ingredients of sauerkraut like Boars Head and some others what I noticed was yes, they contain cabbage, water and salt but then they also have Sodium Benzoate, sodium bisulfite or sodium metabisulfite. If you have a sulfite allergy that is a problem, Here’s an interesting article I found on the dangers of sodium benzoate
How can you ensure that you are receiving all the health benefits of the food you consume? You can make it yourself or purchase at a local farmers market or store that you ensure is making their pickles without the use of vinegar, sugar, heat and chemical preservatives.
Many years ago I found a very cool device called the Perfect Pickler to make my sauerkraut making “goof-proof” I since added them to my website as when I taught a fermenting class my students wanted them.
Last week I made my first version of Kimchi and everyone I’ve had try it loves it. Here’s the recipe. I hope you enjoy it as much as I am loving mine.
Ingredients: ( I use all organic )
Small to Medium green cabbage
1 small daikon radish
2 tablespoons salt (Himalayan, Celtic, any good salt – I use the brand Real Salt)
3-5 cloves garlic
approx. 2 inch chunk of ginger
1 teaspoon fish sauce (I use the Red Boat brand)
1 teaspoon crushed red chili flakes ( I use the Frontier brand)
Food processor (or you can cut and shred anyway you like)
quart wide mouth mason jar
- Take the disc cover off the mason jar and trace around it on the outside of the cabbage, preferable over the heavy vein, cut 2 pieces like this and save them for later
- Chop the cabbage, I use the shredding blade in my food processor or you can just cut the cabbage into small pieces
- Sprinkle the salt over it, mix it up and leave it in the bowl with a plate over it and a gallon jar of water on top of the plate - what happens is the salt will pull the water out of the cabbage and you will come back after an hour or so to a puddle of water at the bottom of the jar then you will want to massage the cabbage mix so it is very watery (if you don’t want to wait, just begin massaging the cabbage/salt mixture and it will take maybe 15 minutes of this to get your desired result.
- In your bowl now add the grated carrot, and grated daikon radish (I use the grating blade in the food processor),
- Add the scallions that I chop up into small, maybe ¼” slices
- Add the chopped up garlic
- Add the ginger, peel it and chop up
- Add the fish sauce and the chili flakes
- Mix and then stuff into your mason jar – it should be very liquidy and you should not need to add any water to it.
- If you are using the perfect pickler, stop about 2 inches before the top of the jar, the pieces of cabbage you cut in step one, slice them in half and then put them in the jar at the top of the mixture as if you can imagine the top of a box would look when you are repacking it, zig zag the pieces so that all you see is the cabbage top and liquid above it.
- Place the overflow cup in, there should be enough water around the cup, then the lid and the airlock.
- If you aren’t using the perfect pickler you want to use something to weight down the cabbage under the fluid but be careful you don’t get any mold growing.
I left mine sit on my counter for 5 days and found it perfect, If its your first time fermenting you may want to stop at 3-4 days and you can leave it for a few weeks to ferment further, taste to see if its ready for you. (for me 5 days tastes right, if you want more probiotic activity it will become more sour, leave it longer)
Then put in your refrigerator and enjoy. Just a few tablespoons a day will be amazing for healing your gut.
Dr Andrew Weil makes a batch of Kimchi weekly using the perfect pickler. Try it. By eating these amazing fermented foods you can work on healing your gut which then creates health is every other part of your body. Enjoy !
To Detox or Not? May 03 2015
The world we live in is filled with way too many toxins. They are found in our food, our environment and just about everywhere we go. The problem I see is that these toxins find a place in our body to live. In some people they may create a digestive problem, weight issue and the list goes on. Toxins are stored in our fat cells.When I hear people talk about detoxing I cringe. The reason for this is that for many people detoxing means they are doing a crazy program, whether its just juicing for a week or its doing what some call the master cleanse which is cayenne pepper, lemon, ginger type of program. What I see with these types of programs is that for those that are pretty healthy, they can be helpful, but for those who are filled with inflammation or are dealing with health issues what this detox does is release the toxins from the fat cells too fast and many peoples bodies can't handle it. Our true detoxification channels in our bodies become overloaded. Our kidneys, liver, lungs etc can't handle all of these toxins at one time and people get really sick.
I believe in nourishing the body. When we work together with an elimination program; introducing herbs and foods that can heal the body the toxins can slowly make their way out of the body without creating additional health issues for people.
Dandelions are one of the best plants to use in the spring (or really any time of the year) to cleanse our body. This week dandelions are popping out all over the place. Might as well use them as within a week or so the flowers will be gone.
Dandelions are tenacious plants. They are known for surviving almost anything and they spread themselves far and wide. Dandelions are tough. Have you ever tried to pull a dandelion root? She likes to leave just a little bit of herself so that she can keep growing.
People who need dandelion are hard working, over-stressed and irritable. They cram too much into each day. They need to learn to let go.
Like the plant, people who need dandelion tend to be full of energy, enthusiasm and power. They generally overextend themselves, are over-driven, over-scheduled and they forget to take time to listen to their own bodies
Dandelion and its herbal remedies work directly to relax and cleanse the liver which is where over-driven people tend to store their anger and frustration.
This week a nice thing to do is to make a dandelion flower oil. Dandelion flower oil allows the muscle to relax in addition to being a great pain reliever for arthritic joints, tension, sinus headaches and more. It is terrific for breast massage to help ease premenstrual soreness and to help soften fibrous, thickened or cystic breast tissue. It aids the body is releasing emotions trapped in the muscles.(How to make the oil: pick the flowers, where they haven't been sprayed - let them dry for about 12 hours, fill a jar with them and then fill your jar with olive oil - stir it to release all the air bubbles, cover - stir every few days to let out more of the air bubbles - let steep for 6 weeks - strain and you'll have an amazing oil)
On an energetic level, I see dandelion as being very free and giving. Our society tends to be emotionally constricted and tries to cover and shove down all negative feelings or cover them up with pharmaceutical medications. This spring look at all the dandelions that are surrounding us. they are shouting to us that they can help us help detox our bodies, let out some of the stored anger and let our emotions flow and release.
We begin our spring/summer medicine making class this Tuesday and will be working with these amazing dandelions. if you'd like to join us, please call 914-923-4346 or go to http://bonniesherbals.com/products/medicine-making-series-part-2
Happy Spring, may your spring be filled with lots of beautiful warm days, flowers and relaxation.
Mullein can help us break through the Stuck Gunk April 08 2015
Winter is coming fast and as much as we try to stay healthy sometimes those virus' and bacteria get through to our family and we want to find a simple solution to get rid of the symptoms that they leave behind in our bodies. Herbal medicine is magical at knowing how to get into the little spaces in our bodies and heal them.
In our society so many reach for a pill before they think about using a simple tea , healing food or a simple herbal tincture. Today I'm going to share with you some simple herbal tools you can use when you, your family or your clients get what I call Crud or Gunk stuck in our lungs.
Mullein is a biennial which means that it lives for 2 years. The first year it looks like the image to your left which I took just this weekend in upstate NY. The second year it will grow a tall flower stalk and go to seed and then the process begins again from the seeds.
I posted this picture on facebook recently and I had the funniest comment " what is this furry lambs ear?" So yes, it is very soft and "furry" however the little hairs on the plant can also tend to be very irritating. A friend of mine called it "cowboy's toilet paper".. I have to tell you that if you used it as toilet paper you'd have a very red, itchy bottom when you were finished using it, so my recommendation is not to use it in that manner. If you are harvesting your own mullein, gather it in the fall of the first year plant or the spring of the second year before it sends up its flower stalk.
So what is mullein good for? Mullein leaf is terrific for congestion and dry coughs. You know those times when you have stuck gunk in your lungs and you seem to cough continuously to get this stuff unstuck. Mullein is an expectorant and will aid the lungs to release the mucous and phlegm from the walls of the lungs so you can cough it up and rid your body of it.
You can take mullein leaf by tincture, tea or by smoking it. I tend to use the tincture but many really like to drink the tea. This is not a simple tea where you just leave it for 5 minutes, that would only give you flavored water, not a medicinal tea. To make mullein tea, fill up a quart mason jar with loose mullein - pack it slightly but don't squash it in your jar. Now fill the jar up with boiling water to the top, cover it and let it steep for a minimum of 4 hours or leave it overnight on your counter. Because of the teeny hairs you want to make sure to strain it very carefully. Straining through tightly woven cotton cloth like a handkerchief or a paper coffee filter is effective.
For those tough bronchial issue, plantain is a great addition to the mullein tea as it is very soothing and mucilaginous. You can use mullein for clearing lung congesting, relieving throat irritation, and helping to open up the airways (note: this is a good remedy for asthma)
I love this thought. Herbalist, Matthew Wood says "A good remedy for people who think too much and congest the mind or suffer mental tightness and congestion following difficult projects. Mullein gives such a person a feeling like the mind is opened up to breezes on a fresh spring day."
Keeping your immune system strong may help you avoid getting sick. A few suggestions are to drink a few cups of bone broth a day (cook your bone broth with astragalus, mushrooms such as maitake, shitake and reishi and seaweed) in addition to nourishing herbal infusions such as nettles, oatstraw, and red clover.
Think of mullein for bronchitis, pneumonia, and coughs. Other herbs I would look at combining with the mullein would be echinacea, elecampane and elder.
Coconut Treats for you to Eat February 19 2015
We're all looking for healthy treats. Have you ever looked in your kitchen for something to eat and well.... nothing did it. Either you felt it wasn't good for you, didn't feel like a treat or just wasn't going to satisfy you. In the past I've written about my almond ball recipe which I love but this recipe is packed full of healthy coconut.
Coconut has been shown to help stabilize blood sugar, lower cholesterol and build the myelin sheath in the brain. It helps improve digestion, regulate hormones, increase thyroid production, increase metabolism and stave off memory loss.
So how great is it that it also tastes delicious.
This easy recipe can be made in either a high speed blender or a food processor. My guess is that a nutribullet or magic bullet would do the trick also.
You can add the optional items or not. For this batch I added all the optionals and it tastes delicious but if you have a nut allergy do not add the nut butter.
2 cups organic shredded unsweetened coconut
2 tablespoons almond butter (optional)
5 medjool dates (pitted) or you can use stevia to taste
2 tablespoons coconut milk (I used a combination almond/coconut milk that I had)
2 tablespoons coconut oil
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract (I used 1/2 teaspoon vanilla powder)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg (grate it fresh if you can, it makes such a difference)
Put all of your ingredients in your blender or food processor and blend until mixed all together. Make balls (or bars for my clients that prefer things in that shape - you know who you are) Refrigerate and enjoy. Note: they do not need to be kept in the refrigerator but they set up good in an hour in the refrigerator.
Let me know how you like them below.
Simple to make: Grass Fed Chili February 03 2015
Grassfed Beef Chili
by Bonnie Rogers, Bonnie's Herbals
1 tablespoon either olive oil or grassfed butter (I use Kerrygold Irish butter)
1 large onion, chopped
3-4 garlic cloves - chopped
2 lbs grass fed beef (if you can't get grass fed, try getting organic beef or the best quality you can get)
herb mix: (mix together - use organic if you can)
2 tablespoons ground cumin
3 tablespoons chili powder
1.5 teaspoons garlic powder
1 teaspoon paprika (if you want you can use smoked paprika)
1 tablespoon raw cacao (cocoa powder- I used the Bulletproof chocolate - http://www.pntra.com/t/SENHTkhKSkxDR0hNS0dLQ0dGRk1JSA )
2 teaspoons sea salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 tablespoon arrowroot, tapioca starch or non-GMO cornstarch
2 cups filtered water or broth
1 28 oz can organic diced or crushed tomatoes
1 can organic black beans - (I like using Eden brand as the can is BPA free)
1 can organic kidney beans or red beans (the same as above re: Eden brand)
- in a large pot or dutch oven, heat butter or oil and saute your onions and garlic for a few minutes
- Add the beef, keep chopping it up into tiny pieces as it browns
- as it is browning slowly put a tablepoon at a time of the herb mix over it, by the time you finish browning the meat you will have added all the herbs - note: if you like it slightly more spicy, add some cayenne pepper to the pot
- add the arrowroot to thicken it
- once the meat is browned add your water or broth, tomatoes and beans ( make sure to rinse them so they don't have any of the goup from the can on them) if you choose to add them bring to a boil
- simmer for anywhere between 30 and 60 minutes at a low heat
- taste - if you want to add more salt or pepper do so.
- serve , you can use tortilla chips, put some grated cheese on it, add a little sour cream or guacamole.
have fun with it. If you have dietary restrictions just adjust the recipe, want less carbs, eliminate the beans. want more carbs, have it with some rice, want it spicier, add more spices,
Let me know how you like the recipe, leave a comment below
Kale (Chips, Salad and Why should I eat it) January 05 2015
If someone asked you to eat kale 10 years ago, many of you would have said, "what is that". Lately kale is becoming much more mainstream in people knowing what it is, but you still don't see it on restaurant menus. So why eat kale, what are some good ways to get it in out bodies and how do I make this green vegetable tasty.
- low in calories
- high in fiber
- high in iron - compared to beef it has more or the same
- great for building blood
- high in vitamin K - which is necessary for the vitamin D you take in to be absorbed
Kale is a superfood, its filled with anti -inflammatory constituents and will infuse your body with minerals and nutrients. Be careful with the quantity you eat if you are hypothyroid. Eating small amounts are great, but don't eat kale constantly, or juice a ton of it daily or you may find your thyroid will talk back to you very loudly.
When you eat your greens, especially leafy greens always keep this in mind you want to always add a fat and an acid, so olive oil, coconut oil, avocado, grass fed butter and an acid, lemon, lime, apple cider vinegar, tomato. By adding both of these you will make sure that your body will take up the calcium and other nutrients you are eating instead of you eating them and not getting the nutrition out of them.
I love just removing the midrib, chopping up my kale and sauteing it in some olive oil or grass fed butter and a little salt with a splash of lemon juice or apple cider vinegar. Following are 2 of my favorite recipes:
bunch of kale
strip the kale off the midrib and break into bite size pieces
make your salad dressing: equal parts of olive oil, freshly squeezed lemon juice, raw honey ( I use less than 1/3) and a pinch of cayenne pepper
pour the salad dressing over the kale and massage the kale for a minute or so, you want to break down the fibers as what is happening is the lemon juice is "cooking" the fibers.
When it seems broken down enough take a handful of your seeds and dried fruit and stir
Enjoy - this is one salad where leftovers are terrific because you are wilting it before you begin.
Cheesy Kale Chips
Blend the following ingredients:
2 c cashews
½ red bell pepper
6 tbsp nutritional yeast
Juice of 1 lemon
1/4 tsp. salt
1 ½ cup water
You can blend them in a vitamix, a nutribullet or try a food processor or regular blender, you want to make sure the nuts are totally blended. If you find that your blender hasn't blended totally, let it sit for a little bit and then blend again, the water will soak into the nuts, in the future, soak the nuts in the water before blending..
Now take your 2 bunches kale and your batch of cashew cheese sauce
Pour cashew cheese sauce on kale pieces and massage until they seem to have broken down. Set on dehydrator sheets. Dehydrate for approx 6 hours at 115 until crispy. Enjoy! If you want to put them in an oven because you don't have a dehydrator put it on a low heat and just keep watching them. I did this to try it out for you and left them too long and and they burned so be careful
Enjoy them, they keep me satisfied when i want a snack because they have good crunch a little salt, lots of minerals and taste delicious
Commit to Your Health - Drink Bone Broth December 29 2014
2015, it's time to make the commitment to Yourself, to your health. If you are ready here's one of the best things you can do for yourself. Begin drinking bone broth and eating lacto-fermented vegetables daily. It's a simple thing to do which creates enormous shifts for many health issues.
What does bone broth do?
Bone broth not only helps reduce inflammation in the respiratory system, it helps improve digestion, boost your immune system, repair your joints and build bones. It is:
- Nutrient dense
- Easily absorbed
- Simple to make
Bone broth is made by using the parts of the animal you generally would discard, the bones, tendons, joints, and feet. When you cook these for a long time what is released into the broth are components such as collagen, arginine, glutamine, glycine, prolamine and a ton of minerals.
In fact Sally Fallon, author of Nourishing Traditions mentions that bone broth is filled with calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, silicon, sulphur, condroitin sulphate and glucasamine. So instead of purchasing these separately as supplements, you can just get them in a cup or two of bone broth daily.
Were you aware that many of the "broths" you purchase contain MSG which is a neurotoxin.
Let's talk about some of these components and why you want to be ingesting them:
- Collagen holds your immune boosting properties - when you cook your soup you will find this layer on the top of the soup that doesn't solidify when you refrigerate it, the stuff that solidifies is the fat which you can take off, but do not discard the collagen.
- Collagen is the protein in the connective tissue which is why I love using chicken and turkey necks when I make my bone broth as they are filled with connective tissue.
- the breakdown of collagen makes gelatin - gelatin helps with food allergies
- Collagen protects and soothes the lining of the GI tract.
- builds bone
- has been shown to reduce wrinkles and cellulite
- helps probiotic growth (eat your lacto-fermented vegetables to get more probiotics)
- Gelatin: contains amino acids such as glutamine, arginine, and lots of others - so what do they do?
- assists muscle growth
- assists cell hydration - remember drinking lots of water doesn't mean that it is going into your cells
- increases growth hormone so that your metabolism works better
- has been shown to help heal people with diverticulitis
- improves concentration/focus and alertness
- helps calm moods
- reduces sugar cravings
- Enhances immune function and wound healing
- helps memory
- helps lower blood pressure
- helps reduce blood stickiness with those who have high cholesterol
- improves blood flow
- helps improve stamina
- helps Reynaud's patients with blood flow to the extremities
- increases production of sperm
- improves blood flow to the genitals
- for men it seems to be helpful for men suffering with erectile dysfunction (ED)
- for woman, especially postmenopausal women, it seem to bring more blood flow to the clitoris and the possibility of reaching orgasm
- there are many other amino acids created within gelatin that help our bodies work effectively an efficiently
When purchasing ingredients for your bone broth make sure to purchase if at all possible 100% grass fed meat and if using poultry make sure they are pasture raised. This will insure that the soup you are making is the most nutritious. Below I will give you some sources that you can purchase these bones online.
Ideally I'd like to see you drink 1-2 cups per day of the broth. In fact, have a cup of bone broth in the morning to start your day off right. Not what you would think of as a "breakfast" food, but I think its the perfect food to break your fast. Filled with nutrients to infuse your body with minerals, nutrients and so much more.
How do I make this broth?
Ingredients: For poultry bone broth
- you can start with 1 whole free range chicken or I prefer 2-3 lbs of bony chicken parts - I use 1/2 backs and 1/2 necks
- chicken feet - optional if you can find them its great,
- 4 quarts cold filtered water
- 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar
- vegables (these are what I use, feel free to use what you have or like
- 2 onions, quartered with skin
- 4 carrots, washed and chopped
- 3 celery stalks, chopped
- 2 parsnips, washed and chopped
- 1 celeriac if I can find it - tastes delicious
- 3 astragalus sticks - helps build the immune system - optional
- 1/2 bunch dill - optional
- 1 bunch parsley
Do your best to find a pastured, organic chicken
- if you are using a whole chicken, cut it up into many pieces
- place the chicken, apple cider vinegar, vegetables and water into your pot (you can use a pot over your stove or a crock pot- don't put the dill or parsley in yet
- let it sit for 30-60 minutes before you turn the heat on
- bring to a boil - remove scum that rises to the top
- reduce heat, cover and simmer - I prefer to cook for 24 hours, this way you are able to get a lot of the nutrients out of the soup. Sometimes after 6-10 hours I'll take a cup or two out and start drinking it then
- about 15 minutes before you are finished cooking your soup put the dill and parsley in
If you used a whole chicken, about 3 hours after you start take out the meat that is in it and use it for chicken salad or just eating, if you let it cook for longer it will get stringy and you'll just end up dumping it.
When the soup is done cooking I find the easiest way to strain it is to use a large wire pasta strainer over a large bowl or pot and then store in large mason jars. I get the half gallon ones at my hardware store and use them for a multitude of things.
Refrigerate your broth and the fat will harden and you can take it right off. You will find a large portion of what looks kind of funky at the top of the soup. This is the collagen, don't throw it away, just stir your soup before you pour it in a pot to heat it it. It's the "good stuff, the healing stuff" in the soup. Store in the freezer if you made more than you will use in 4 days.
There are many variations of how you can use your bone broth once its made. Here is one of my favorite recipes, we call it Green Slime Soup in my house, but the official name is Spinach Zucchini soup.
- take 2 onions, quarter them and put them in a pot with a few tablespoons of olive oil or grass fed butter to saute for a few minutes
- cut up 3 medium zucchini and 2 medium yukon gold potatoes add them to the onions and saute about 5-10 minutes
- add 1 quart of bone broth to the pot
- bring to a boil then put on low and simmer for 30 minutes
- turn off heat
- take about 8 cups of baby spinach and push it under the fluid in the soup pot
- let it sit for 15 minutes covered
- puree, either in a Vitamix or using a soup wand until it is smooth
Enjoy - you can add some sea salt and/or pepper to taste. It's one of our favorite soups to eat, packed full of nutrition and lots of vegetables.
When I cooked my soup this time I started it in a pot but decided to finish it overnight in a crockpot that I placed in our garage. Sometimes after smelling the bone broth for a long time my husband has had it, so we have a table in the garage that I put the crock pot on and it continues to cook out there on low.
You can also make a beef or venison bone broth - there are many recipes out there but let me know if you want me to write another blog on this and I'll put that recipe on it.
One last thing, I mentioned at the beginning of this article that you should be eating lacto-fermented vegetables. The best way I have found to make them is using the perfect pickler.
A few places I've found to purchase healthy pastured chicken online:
a kosher option http://www.kolfoods.com/kosher-products/14-Chicken-Delicacies/
If you don't have the time or energy, here is a place you can purchase ready made bone broth, frozen
FLAX, SUNFLOWER and VEGGIE CRACKER December 14 2014
If you are on a paleo diet, a low carbohydrate program or just trying to reduce your sugars but still want a crunch this cracker is for you . I find that it saves me from wanting a cracker, a chip or another crunch. These crackers are made with flax seeds, sunflower seeds and veggies. I have always made them in my dehydrator. I have an Excalibur dehydrator and love how my crackers and kale chips come out in it. However I was asked to test this recipe in the oven for those that do not have a dehydrator and they came out ok. I like the taste and crunch a little better of those dehydrated but its a good option for those who don't have one.
Soak for several hours
4 cups of water
1 1/2 cups golden flax seeds
1 1/2 cups brown flax seeds
1 cup sunflower seeds
When they are done soaking you will notice that the bowl is filled with a globby substance. This keeps your crackers together. When you soak flax seed the phytic acid that is on the seeds is released and this allows you to get the good nutrition out of the seeds. Note: when you heat flax seeds you will lose some of this so if you are cooking these crackers use the absolute lowest setting on your oven, mine went to 175 degrees.
Shred in food processor or very fine chop
1 red bell pepper
Puree in your blender, whether its a nutribullet, vitamix, blendtec or just a plain old blender
4 tomatoes - I like to use plum tomatoes
2 stalks of celery
4 cloves garlic
1/3 cup Braggs liquid aminos
1 tsp sea salt
1 tablespoon chili powder
Mix all of these together and then place on your dehydrator trays (put the texflex lining on it or use parchment paper) or on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Spread the mixture so its about 1/4 inch thick if you make it thicker it will feel chewy when you eat it, much thinner and it will fall apart
If you use a dehydrator, dehydrate them at 110 degrees to keep them in the raw state - I leave them overnight, so approx 12 hours and then turn them over, pull off the texflex sheets as you will find that they are a little sticky on the bottom and leave them for another few hours so they are very crunchy
If you are using your oven, make your oven as low as you can, mine wouldn't work at lower than 175 degrees. I left them there for 3 hours then turned it over pulled off the parchment paper and left another hour. They weren't as crunchy as i would like them but i was going to sleep so I turned off the oven and then turned it on this morning and let it cook for another few hours. IF I had started it earlier in the day I think that 5 hours on first side, turn over and then another hour or 2 would be great. Try it and post below what you find.
Break them up into cracker size pieces. A good thing to do, that I forgot to do yesterday is once they are cooking or dehydrating for a litle while, go score them with a knife so that when you break them they break into nice even pieces unlike the ones you see in the image I
I love putting a slice of avocado on them, or some guacamole, if I'm eating some chicken salad, hummus or anything I would use a chip or cracker for. I like to say that these crackers keep me sane in my not so sane food plan.
Just a note for those that have nightshade sensitivities - you can try using some veggie broth instead of the liquid you would get from the tomatoes and maybe add some zucchini instead of the peppers, I haven't tried this but let me know how if works or what you substitute
Enjoy them. I'd love to hear how you like them or any questions you might have.
Carrot - Banana Muffins November 04 2014
Are you eating primal or paleo these days. Here's an awesome muffin recipe that is amazing. I hope you enjoy it as much as I am.
2 cups almond flour
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp sea salt
1 Tbs cinnamon
9 dates, pitted
3 ripe bananas
1 1/4 cups carrots (I used 2 medium size carrots)
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
¼ cup coconut oil, shredded
Muffin paper liners
- Preheat oven to 350 and line 12 muffin tins with paper liners.
- In a food processor combine the dates, bananas, eggs, vinegar, oil, and carrots. Puree.
- Add all dry ingredients into the food processor and mix thoroughly
- Spoon mixture into the muffin liners
- Bake 350 degrees for 30 minutes (test by putting a toothpick in - mine took 40 minutes)
Enjoy. Let me know how you like them.
Delicious Chocolate Chia Pudding November 03 2014
I was experimented this weekend with different recipes and this one came up. After tweeking it slightly I had it for breakfast this morning and it was absolutely delicious. Imagine, high fiber, high protein, lots of essential fatty acids, antioxidants and great taste all in one bowl.
Raw chocolate straight from the cacao bean - a superfood known by the Aztecs as "Food of the Gods". It packs up to 10x more antioxidants than blueberries, green tea or red wine. Cacao has been said to help lower cardiovascular disease and lower stress.
Chocolate in commercial foods is mixed with sugar, milk and lots of additives. Some wonder if there is really any true cacao in them. Think of all that Halloween candy, is it healthy like raw cacao, NOT.
Antioxidants increase neurotransmitters in the brain that promote rejuvenation, elevate our moods and give us a positive outlook. Due to this, eendorphins may be released that can help reduce depression, increase mental clarity and make you feel terrific. Isn't it fabulous that raw cacao is packed full of these antioxidants in a delicious treat.
Raw cacao is packed full of magnesium ( and we wonder why pre-menstrual women and women during their monthly cycle crave chocolate?) Magnesium helps balance our brains chemistry, stop spasms, balance our hormones and create strong bones.
Cacao is filled with Theobromine. Theobromine is a mild non-addictive stimulant thought to relieve depression in addition to protectting teeth from decay better than fluoride
When raw cacao stays raw it has increased levels of anti-oxidants. When it is cooked into a dark chocolate bar it still has antioxidants but not any where near the quanitity in the raw product.
Why not get these benefits in a tasty food.
Chia seeds are rich in omega 3 fatty acids, fiber and protein. This tiny seed packs amazing nutrition. It has virtually no taste and blends well with many fluids.
Recently in the news you may have seen a young man that ate chia seeds without soaking them first and they became jammed in his esophagus. What chia seeds do is they expand to 10 times their size when put in fluid. I believe that when this young man ate the seeds they expanded using his own body fluids. Therefore, I so recommend that you soak them first and then you’ll have no problem.
Chia is very rich in antioxidants and unlike flax they do not need to be ground to make their nutrients available. They are packed with fiber, calcium, phosphorus, magnesium and other minerals that enrich our bodies.
You may see chia seeds in power drinks in your health food store, I took some images of them, they are basically filled with sugar juices. You can easily make your own chia drinks. I find that just adding a tablespoon to my water is an easy way to get the chia in my body. In Mexico they make a drink called chia fresca. They take water, chia seeds, lemon juice and some sweetner.
Recipe for Chia, Cacao Pudding
1 ¼ cup almond or coconut milk (I prefer it with almond milk)
3 tablespoons raw cacao
¼ cup chia seeds
¼ teaspoon vanilla extract (optional)
2 teaspoons maple syrup or honey, you can use stevia if you choose – I loved it with maple syrup
Mix it all together, either in a covered jar that you shake very vigorously or I prefer to use a magic bullet or vitamix. Put in the refrigerator for a few hours and then enjoy. I make mine in the evening and had it for breakfast. It was absolutely divine.
Try it, leave a comment below letting me know how you like it.
Chocolate Pudding - Healthy Style October 31 2014
Do you crave chocolate? Sugar laden chocolate?
Do you know that many times when you are craving chocolate its because you are deficient in magnesium? Chocolate is chock full of magnesium and its why many women crave it during the month.
A yummy way to get your chocolate fix in a healthy manor is to make this chocolate pudding. Healthy? You're kidding. Nope, I so enjoyed this today and I hope you will also.
How do you make chocolate pudding creamy and delicious without adding white sugar?
As I played in the kitchen I was aiming for a sweet treat with protein, fat and minimal sugar. This was delicious. I began mixing it in the Vitamix and as I tasted it on the first try I found that it was so difficult to get out of the blades soI poured it into my food processor as it still needed more ingredients. It turned out fabulous.
1 Haas avocado
3 tablespoons raw cacao
4 teaspoons raw honey
pinch good sea salt
2 teaspoons nut butter - I used peanut butter, you could use sunflower butter, almond butter or any other you like
3 medjool dates
Add all the ingredients to your food processor, Vitamix or Nutribullet. Mix and enjoy
It will taste delicious once you refrigerate it.
Top with whipped cream, crystallized ginger, goji berries, raspberries, just use your imagination, or do what I did and just eat it straight.
Why Magnesium is so Vital to our Bodies October 22 2014
Good for you - Ratatouille October 02 2014
As we travel our path we need to make decisions on what food to eat. Do we choose to eat a "healthy diet" or not and what really is a "healthy diet"? Everywhere you look someone else has a new plan that is the best food plan. So how do you decide what is best for you? Or, do you stick to the standard all American diet loaded with sugar, white flour and crappy fats?
Do you eliminate all grains, fats, sugar or do you moderate your diet. For many people removing grains is probably the best course of action but its also not a simple one. Gluten free, also tough but then you can have the occasional quinoa, rice, potato and all the other non gluten grains. Do you simply get rid of sugar? Remove dairy? It's all an individual choice. If you need assistance with coming up with a protocol find a health coach to guide you (or let's have a conversation)
One of my favorite dishes to have in the refrigerator is ratatouille. It's a combination of eggplant, zucchini, yellow squash, tomato, and onion. It's one of my feel good comfort foods, is simple to make and tastes delicious. You'll find lots of recipes out there but this is my favorite one.
1 eggplant (I use a nice plump one with the skin on)
1 large or 2 small zucchini
1 large or 2 small yellow summer squash
4 medium tomatoes
1 medium onion
1-2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 teaspoon good sea salt
- chop up your onion and saute it in 1 tablespoon of olive oil on a low heat till soft
- chop up the rest of your vegetables and I like to layer in my pot 1/2 of each vegetable and then make another layer of each one so they cook all together
- simmer on a low heat stirring the pot every 15 minutes until all of the vegetables are pretty soft. For me it's usually around 30-45 minutes
- when you go to stir it the first time add in your salt and the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil
- When it finishes cooking eat or save in the refrigerator for your next meal.
my favorite is to heat up a bowl of the ratatouille in a small pan and then pour it over a 1/2 cup of ricotta cheese and have this for my breakfast or lunch. For dinner I usually just have it plain with whatever protein I cook that night.
Ratatouille is a great addition to you menu. It's filled with fiber, minerals and makes everything taste yummy. Enjoy.
Stand Tall and Let the Small Stuff Go September 22 2014
This week begins the 10 day period between Rosh HaShanah (The Jewish New Year) and Yom Kippur (the Jewish Day of Atonement). For those of you who aren't Jewish, I believe this article will still be of interest to you.
What are your intentions for the coming year? Whether you think of the year as the school year, from fall equinox for a year or From Rosh Hashanah, It’s about what your intentions are for the coming year and how you can make change.
Wednesday night begins Rosh Hashanah and I was always told that if you take these 10 days to think about what you did this prior year that you want to change or eliminate and set goals for the coming year that you have a good chance of these things occurring. It is believed in Jewish law that your thoughts are written in the book on Rosh Hashanah and are sealed in the book on Yom Kippur.
What do you want in your book this year? Do you want to be a better person? Whether that means giving something of yourself, being nicer to someone this year, being true to yourself? Is this the year that you allow amazing health in to your life? Is this the year you meet the most fabulous partner? Find the best job or clients? What do you want for your life?
I challenge you today. Take some time to make a list of your intentions, your goals and your aspirations for this coming year. It doesn’t matter what religion you are. I will tell you that there will be millions of people praying this week so if your intentions can reach the universe on this very intense trail of prayer you may as well take advantage of it.
Write your goals down so that it takes these intentions out of the dream world (pipe dreams) and makes them real. I like to think about this as an opportunity to think about where you were and where you’d like to go. It’s a time to reflect on what you did last year that you liked and what you want to change. It’s time to change your story (if that is what you want to do).
As I think about my own intentions I think about some of the things I did this year that were positive and the ones that I want to change. Here’s a few on my intentions that are on my list this year:
- Remember to have a smoothie daily with a green powder in it to increase the minerals in my body
- Be gentle on myself
- Attract the ideal clients that need my help
It’s your time to start new. Create your own new patterns. Whether that new pattern is that you will take a walk 3 times a week, reduce your sugar intake, begin to use herbal medicine, find a new partner, a new job, release excess weight, grow your business or really whatever you want. No one else can change you, only you. Remove the old gunk and create a new pattern.
Think about the image of a sunflower. She stands tall and gets your attention right away. She loves to live in groups of her friends but is happy just standing alone. Sunflowers are happy flowers, they will lift your spirit and well as give you nourishment. Think of the sunflower as you set your inentions. Will they make someone (especially you) happy?
From my family to yours, I wish you a year filled with amazing health, success and lots of laughter. L’Shana Tova.
Are you taking a Pill for your Ill September 17 2014
Have you ever thought that the culinary herbs that are in your cupboard can help? Next time you have a headache, think about a cup of rosemary tea. Take a teaspoon of dry rosemary, steep it in boiling water for 5 minutes, strain it, if you choose add a little honey to it. Rosemary helps to energize the circulatory system, increase your energy and decrease stress. Such a simple solution. OR, try a cup of mint tea. Generally, even it you are out in a restaurant, you can get a simple cup of mint tea.
What about those pharmaceuticals that you are taking for a chronic health condition: arthritis, blood pressure. gastric reflux? Have you ever given any thought to the fact that with a combination of nutrition, herbs, and more, you can reduce or remove these drugs. Let me tell you my story: my daughter was diagnosed with Lyme 12 years ago, then Juvenile Arthritis, she was on arthritis meds for 8 years which caused her to be diagnosed with Hodgkins Lymphoma. So we hoped that if she had to have chemo that the arthritis would disappear too. NOPE, it was back 6 months later and so were different drugs. We worked with nutrition and then added in the Chanson ionized alkaline water. My intention was to get her off her medications and boy was I thrilled when 1 1/2 years later she is now totally off all medication.
I'd be thrilled if you would think about the side effects of what your pharmaceuticals can be causing you and find someone that can help you remove them from your life. For many they are not meant to be lifelong crutches, but that is what they tend to be. Just working with food, removing gluten, adding more greens, eating a lot of live food will make a big difference in your health.
One more story I'd like to leave you with, my dad has been struggling with terrible back pain and sciatica. The doctors were giving him pain medication that just made him tired but didn't help the symptoms enough. With specific herbs that he now uses both internally and as an oil externally, he can now go about his life and exercise without constant pain. What a gift it was for me to be able to help him remove this pain.
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