Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Chocolate Orange Smoothie: Raw Food Smoothie Recipe

Chocolate Orange Smoothie
serves 1 ~ $2.20 per serving 

You have to remind yourself this is good for you. It's so delicious it feels downright decadent. The hemp milk makes it super creamy and luscious.

  • 1 orange, peeled and frozen ($.50)
  • 2 bananas, peeled, sliced, and frozen ($.40)
  • 1 cup hemp milk ($1.00)
  • 3 tablespoons cacao powder ($.30) 
  • 1/2 teaspoon orange extract
  • few drops stevia (optional)
  • pinch salt
  • 6 ice cubes
  • water for blending, if necessary

  1. In a high speed blender, puree all ingredients until very smooth and creamy. 
  2. Add water if needed for ease of blender or if a thinner smoothie is desired. 

nutritional information:      calories: 339      fat: 14 gr      carbs: 43 gr       protein: 8 gr 

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Fruit Stew: Raw Food Recipe

Fruit Stew
serves 2 ~ $2.48 per serving

This is surprisingly filling. You can make this entirely fat free by simply omitting the olive oil, which is something I do on occasion. 

  • 1 mango, cubed ($1.49)
  • 1 papaya, cubed ($.99)
  • 1 cucumber, chopped ($.69)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil ($.20)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped ($.05)
  • 1 red bell pepper, finely chopped ($.89)
  • 1 jalapeno, minced ($.20)
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice ($.45)
  • black pepper
  • red pepper flakes

  1. In a food processor fitted with an "S blade, puree about a third of each of the mango, papaya, and cucumber and the olive oil and salt until very smooth. This is the stew base. 
  2. In a large bowl, add the remaining chopped mango, papaya, and cucumber, along with the onion, red bell pepper, and jalapeno. 
  3. Stir to mix. 
  4. Add the lime juice and stir again. 
  5. Serve with a bit of black pepper and a few crushed red pepper flakes.
  6. Most of the heat of a jalapeno is found in the seeds. I like this kind of spicy so I include most of the seeds from the jalapeno. If you prefer a bit more mild taste, just leave out most or all of the seeds.

 nutritional information       calories: 289      fat: 14 gr      carbs: 43 gr       protein: 3 gr

And want to know a few fun facts about fruit, too?

Hope you're all having a great spring! Say hello :)

Friday, April 8, 2016

Anti-Inflammatory Orange Turmeric Tea plus 10 Healthy Benefits of Turmeric

Tumeric is famously anti-inflammatory and can be enjoyed many different ways, including juiced raw. But today, I wanted to pass on this super easy tea (psst, it's not raw!).

I've been drinking it almost every morning for a couple months now and it's still delicious to me, which is a good thing. Turmeric has so many beneficial qualities ... let us count the ways (scroll below for the tea how-to).

1. Anti-inflammatory.
Turmeric, the brightly colored spice that gives curry it's intense color, contains beneficial compounds that have positive health benefits. The main compounds are the curcuminoids and the most important of these is curcumin. One of the most beneficial things curcumin can do is lessen inflammation, which is implicated in most Western diseases.

To be fair, inflammatory responses are a good thing. We wouldn't be able to wage a defense against bacteria and viruses, or injuries, for example, without a strong inflammatory response. However, too much of a good thing can cause problems. Chronic inflammation has been implicated in many diseases that plague us today, including heart disease, diabetes, Alzheimer's, and obesity. Curcumin can reduce inflammation as effectively as some anti-inflammatory medications, but without the side effects. One of the ways it does this is by inhibiting (NF)-kB.  
2. Antioxidant
Oxidation is a chemical reaction that produces free radicals. Free radicals have unpaired electrons. These lonely little fragments damage cells and wreak havoc and destruction wherever they go. Antioxidants, like curcumin, terminate the chain reactions that lead to unpaired electrons and, therefore, free radicals and the damage they cause. Seriously, it's the radicals, man.
3. Heart Health
Almost 50% of Americans will die prematurely from heart disease. Heart disease and chronic inflammation are so closely linked that inflammation is thought to be an atherogenic response (atherogenic means it causes atherosclerosis, aka, cardiovascular disease, heart disease, and is also peripheral artery disease). It's even thought possible that the slight benefit sometimes derived from statins could be due to their anti-inflammatory properties. Reducing inflammation is a vital key to reducing heart disease.Curcumin is a potent COX-2 inhibitor, that

4. Cancer
Curcumin is being investigated as prevention and treatment for cancers such as that of the colon and pancreas. Chronic inflammation and free radicals promote cancer. Reducing those conditions can be preventive and curcumin works well at both. 
5. Arthritis
 Inflammation is an important mechanism in arthritis. Curcumin acts as a COX-2 inhibitor in the same way pharmaceutical drugs such as Celebrex do, but without the dangerous side effects. The tea below, as well as curcumin supplements can ease the pain of arthritis and rejuvenate mobility.

7. Alzheimer's 
India has a low incidence of Alzheimer's, possibly linked to higher intake of curcumin. Because inflammation plays such a big part in most disease, including Alzheimer's, it can be protective and preventative.

8. Brain Function
Alzheimer's is not the only thing that can go awry in brain function, and again, inflammation is implicated. In this case, it's known as neuroinflammation, or inflammation specifically in the brain and reducing that can help overall brain function. 
9. Depression
Depression and anxiety are often linked to brain inflammation (this is why going gluten free can help mood, as well). It seems to offer some improvement and relief to those who have depression.

10. Gall Bladder Function 
Curcumin causes the gall bladder to contract, which stimulates bile formation and gall bladder emptying and a freely flowing gallbladder is a happy, healthy one (unless you have a stone blocking the exit, which can cause a painful gallbladder attack).

11. Pepper
I can't talk about turmeric and curcumin without also mentioning black pepper. The Piperine in black pepper increases the absorption of curcumin by 2000% (that's 20x). So, add a little bit of black pepper to whatever you make with turmeric for the greatest benefit. It tastes good, too.

*Do not use turmeric or curcumin if you are using blood thinners such as Warfarin or if you have existing gall bladder disease.

 This tea (and this salad dressing, too) are delicious ways to get a healthy dose of turmeric.

Orange Turmeric Tea
serves 3 ~ $.33 per serving

  • 1 orange, peeled and chopped ($.70)
  • 1 teaspoon powdered tumeric ($.10)
  • 1 teaspoon caraway seeds($10)
  • a few black peppercorns, or pinch of black pepper
  • stevia or sweetener, if desired ($.10)

  1. Place the orange, turmeric, and caraway seeds in a large saucepan with four cups water. 
  2. Bring to a boil over high heat and continue to boil for about five minutes. This will reduce any bitterness in the turmeric.
  3. Add the peppercorns or pinch of pepper and steep for a minute or two. 
  4. Strain through a fine mesh strainer into mugs and and the sweetener of your choice, if desired. 


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