So I have been hearing all this hype about Celery juice and how amazing it is. It can reduce inflammation, lower blood pressure, detox your kidneys, help with skin conditions like acne and eczema, the list goes on and on. Earlier this week I was having some stomach issues and thought I would give it a try. I drove to my local favorite juice shop and picked up a bottle. After 30 min, my stomach did feel better. At 6 dollars a bottle I decided to find a cheaper way to keep drinking it and really see how it worked. I picked up some organic celery for $1.99, some fresh mint and headed home to make a batch. I added some water to my blender, chopped up the celery and some of the mint, squeezed in some fresh lemon juice to copy the juice I had earlier. I also grated some fresh ginger in since its an anti-inflammatory I figured it could hurt. Blended it all up and poured it through a strainer pressing the pulp with the back of a spoon. It turned out good but was time consuming. So I ordered nut bags on Amazon. Today after blending I placed one of the bags inside a juice pitcher poured the juice into the bag. Then squeezed all the juice from the pulp. The pulp left behind in the bag was pretty dry and I was able to get quite a bit of juice. The last 2 days I have started my day with celery juice instead of lemon water, I don’t know if I am noticing a huge difference but I am going to stick with it and report back. I did also take some to the gym as a post workout recovery drink. With high water content of celery plus the fact that is has sodium and potassium electrolytes it makes sense that it would be a great way to rehydrate after a workout. You also get some Vitamin A,B,C and K, all seems like positives to me.
So my verdict, I think it tastes good, I am getting some extra water and vitamins and I am willing to stick with it and see if I notice any more changes. Plus, now I have the pulp to start playing with some recipes.
If you have tried celery juice, tell me what you think.
This time of the year, it is easy to fall off track. There are holiday parties, holiday baking, pumpkin spice everything. Don’t let one day make you throw in the towel and wait for the “new year” to take care of your health. Work harder, eat cleaner, and enjoy the small indulgences of the season.
This cheese spread is so good! A little bit of zip, creamy and cheesy. Great for sandwiches or as a veggie dip.
1/2 cup of soaked cashews
1 TBS Lemon Juice
1 1/2 TBS Nutritional Yeast
1 TBS Coconut Oil
1 1/2 TSP Chili Powder (or more to taste)
1 TSP Italian Herb Blend (dried)
UnSweetened Non-Dairy Milk (I used Almond)
Place all ingredients in a high speed blender, start with a tablespoon milk, blend, add more milk until desired consistency.
Asparagus Tomato Sandwich
Toast gluten-free bread. Spread cheese spread on each slice. Saute asparagus and green bell pepper in coconut oil over med-high heat for a couple minutes to lightly cook but retain slight crunch. Add tomato, salt and pepper. For non-vegan add salmon.
Three of my favorite ways to transform chickpeas into a quick delicious meal or snack.
My family loves hummus, they go through it so quick I had to learn how to make it to keep up with demand. This is a great base and can be transformed by adding other flavors: roasted garlic, basil, arugula, spinach, sundried tomatoes.
2 Cans Garbanzo Beans (drained and rinsed)
3/4 cup Tahini (ground sesame seeds)
1/2 cup Olive Oil
1/2 cup Lemon Juice
1/2 tsp ea. Cayenne, Coriander, Garlic
1 tsp. Paprika
4 tsp Cumin
Salt and Pepper to taste
Mix all ingredients together in a blender or food processor. Serve with fresh veggies (celery, radishes, cucumber, cherry tomatoes)
I love Soca Bread. It is quick, easy and can be topped with any ingredients you have in your fridge. Gluten free, vegan and has 5 grams of fiber a serving and 6 grams of protein.
1 Cup Garbanzo Bean Flour ( I found it at Sprouts)
1 Cup Warm Water
1 TBS Olive Oil
2 TBS Nutritional Yeast
1 TBS Italian Seasoning mix
Mix ingredients together. Heat a non-stick skillet cook like a pancake over med high heat, 2-3 minutes each side until lightly brown. 4 Servings
Avocado topped with Arugula dressed with olive oil and lemon juice and sautéed mushrooms.
Chickpeas, spinach, cucumber, tomato, green olive drizzled with tahini
Vegan Veggie Fritatta
Great for Sunday Brunch and the leftover slices make a great on the go breakfast. Can also be cooked in a muffin pan for single servings.
3 Cups Veggies
1 cup Chickpea Flour
1/2 cup Nutritional Yeast
1 1/2 cup Water
2 tsp dried Oregano
2 TBS fresh Basil
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Mix together flour, yeast, water and herbs. In an iron skillet, lightly cook veggies. I used frozen green beans and pepper mix, when thawed and water evaporated, added mushrooms, onion cherry tomatoes, cooked about 3 minutes. Add batter to skillet, put into oven and bake for 30 min.
Want to make healthier choices and don’t know where to start. Calorie counting, macro-tracking, food weighing seem over-whelming. Your first step to better health can be as easy as increasing your fiber intake. Most people fall short of the goal of 25-35grams a day. Why, because we grab easy, high carb, low fiber, pre-packaged foods. The result, our digestive system is not running at it’s best, we are not absorbing all the nutrients we need and we have difficultly eliminating the things are body does not need. All that can lead to bloating, feeling run down, lack of mental clarity and just not performing at our best.
How does increasing fiber help all this? Whole foods, foods closer to their natural form, are higher in fiber. By swapping processed foods for nutrient dense foods, you will begin to heal your gut, increase your energy and help control weight management.
9 Health Benefits of Fiber
•Blood sugar control: Soluble fiber may help to slow your body’s breakdown of carbohydrates and the absorption of sugar, helping with blood sugar control.
•Heart health: An inverse association has been found between fiber intake and heart attack, and research shows that those eating a high-fiber diet have a 40 percent lower risk of heart disease.
•Stroke: Researchers have found that for every seven-grams more fiber you consume on a daily basis, your stroke risk is decreased by 7 percent
•Weight loss and management: Fiber supplements have been shown to enhance weight loss among obese people, likely because fiber increases feelings of fullness.
•Skin health: Fiber, particularly psyllium husk, may help move yeast and fungus out of your body, preventing them from being excreted through your skin where they could trigger acne or rashes.
•Diverticulitis: Dietary fiber (especially insoluble) may reduce your risk of diverticulitis – an inflammation of polyps in your intestine – by 40 percent.
•Hemorrhoids: A high-fiber diet may lower your risk of hemorrhoids.
•Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS): Fiber may provide some relief from IBS.
•Gallstones and kidney stones: A high-fiber diet may reduce the risk of gallstones and kidney stones, likely because of its ability to help regulate blood sugar.
Choose vegetables, fruits, whole grains, beans. Swap “white sugar, white flour” for more nutrient dense options. Read fiber labels on packaged breads and pastas. Look for 100% whole grain (not whole wheat flour) and a fiber content of 3-7 grams. Trade white pasta for bean pastas. White rice for brown, quinoa or buckwheat. Trade packaged cookies for fruit or homemade whole grain oatmeal & chia seed cookies. Have fun and enjoy finding new favorite foods and recipes.
Want up your gut health even more, add pre and probiotic foods to you menu. They help good bacteria grow in your intestine, increasing your health benefits even more.
I love the book Vegan Bowl Attack by Jackie Sobon. Today’s recipe is inspired by her Scramble Burrito Bowl but using ingredients I had on hand.
Summer maybe here, but I still need quick and easy grab and go breakfast for me and my family as we head out the door to work or workouts.
My Power Oatmeal full of protein, fiber and superfoods. I make a big batch and put single servings in snack size ziplock bags. Then add hot water, stir, top with fresh fruit. Or, you put into Mason Jars for:
Overnight Oats: 1/2 Cup Oats, 1 cup Almond Milk, 1/4 cup Chia Seed (if not using power oatmeal mix), 2 tsp Vanilla Extract, 1/4 cup unsweetened coconut flakes, 1 tsp maple syrup, 1 tsp cinnamon mix together in mason jar, top with 1/2 cup fresh berries and 1/4 cup nuts Refrigerate overnight.
The two make the night before and put in a container with a lid to grab and go:
Egg and Veggie Scramble: 2 eggs, fresh or frozen Spinach, tomatoes diced, mushrooms chopped, fresh or frozen bell peppers. Toss frozen veggies in olive oil (about 5 min, salt), add fresh veggies (3-5min, salt and pepper) , add eggs, cook through. Other add ins, mushrooms, onion, scallions, fresh herbs, broccoli, asparagus, nutritional yeast.
Scramble Burrito Bowl from the book Vegan Bowl Attack, for days when you don’t want eggs, this recipe uses protein rich tofu.
These recipes, make a big batch and package in grab and go servings.
Quinoa Egg Power Bites from one of my favorite books, Aim True by Kathryn Budig. A mix of delicious recipes and yoga poses to help you enjoy life and find your true self.
Morning Glory Muffins from the book Everyday Detox is one of my boys favorite. Unfortunately, every time I make them, they do not last long enough to make it into weekday breakfast packs.
Let your rice cooker do the work. I use my rice cooker a lot to make batches of brown rice and quinoa to have on hand during the week
Carrot Cake Quinoa Porridge is a recipe I adapted from Nutrition Stripped by McKel Hill. Soak 1/2 cup of Orange Flavored Cranberries in the juice of 1 orange and 1 lemon. In your rice cooker add 1 cup Quinoa, 2 cups water, 1 tsp cinnamon, 1 tsp nutmeg (or 2 tsp pumpkin spice mix) and a pinch of salt. Shred 2 cups of carrots and add to the warm quinoa when it finishes cooking, cover and let set 10 min. Then add the soaked cranberries, 2 tbs honey and 1 tsp vanilla, fluff with fork. When cooled store in fridge.
Nectarine Quinoa Porridge is another recipe from Vegan Bowl Attack. One of my Zumba students brought me a bag of nectarines so this recipe was just what I needed. This is a sweet porridge so it is great as a brunch treat or even afternoon snack to kick a sweet craving. Slice up 1 and 1/2 cups nectarines. In your rice cooker add 2/3 cup quinoa, 2/3 cup unsweetened non-dairy milk, 3 tbs coconut sugar, 1 1/2tsp vanilla extract and nectarines. Stir, start rice cooker and stir a few times while cooking. Top with pistachios when serving.
What are your favorite make ahead breakfast recipes.
Apple Cider Vinegar has amazing health benefits. You can add a dash to sparkling or still water with a little lemon or try one of the recipes below. You want to make sure your ACV has “the mother” in it. Some of the benefits include:
You can find more info at braggs.com and is available at most grocery stores. You can also find other quality brands of ACV at Trader Joe’s and Sprouts.
Fat Burner Drink
This is a new recipe for me, I have a huge box of grapefruit so I am going to give it a try. Why does it work? From Dr. OZ’s website:
“Before every meal, try Dr. Oz’s secret swimsuit slim down drink of a choice – a mixture of grapefruit juice and apple cider vinegar. Simply mix 1 cup of grapefruit juice with 2 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar, stir, and enjoy. The juice is loaded with vitamin C, which will help you burn fat faster, especially during exercise. In fact, a study showed that people with adequate vitamin C levels burned 30% more fat during moderate exercise than individuals low in vitamin C. Meanwhile, the acetic acid contained in the vinegar may switch on genes your body needs to pump out fat-burning proteins. If you find the drink a bit tart, add 1 teaspoon of honey, which only adds 20 calories, for sweetness. Drink Dr. Oz’s secret slimdown drink before every meal and you’ll literally burn away your fat while enjoying a citrusy delight.”
7 Day Detox Drink
This one I do drink on a regular basis and really like. I do even add some ACV if I want an extra kick. Yogi tea has a Detox and Peach Detox tea that have dandelion root in it. Traditional Medicinals Herbal Teas has an organic Roasted Dandelion Root tea. I have used all 3.
Why does it works:
*Dandelion Root stimulates the liver, helping to detox and also helps with digestion.
*Cranberry juice is full of antioxidants and PAC’s which help stop bacteria from attaching in the urinary tract and supports the liver.
*Lemon juice is alkalizing , a stimulant for the liver and adds a Vitamin C boost.
Master Cleanse Lemonade
I am including this one because I have gotten a few questions about it. This was popular as a cleanse and you drank the lemonade in place of meals. I personally have not done a liquid cleanse but I have added this at times when I feel I need to clean up my food choices and get back on track.
Why it works:
*Cayenne pepper (and all hot peppers) contain capsaicin which boosts thermogenesis in your body, which in turn, boosts metabolism and fat-burning. It can also lessen the effects of dietary fat.
*Lemon juice helps with digestion and stimulates the liver, helping with detox.
*Maple Syrup if full of minerals, vitamins and antioxidants
Let’s be honest, drinking cayenne pepper and lemon juice together is going to clean out your intestinal tract. That said, make sure you are drinking plenty of purified water in addition to this to help flush out toxins and replace lost water in your digestive tract.
Other beneficial detox ingredients:
Cinnamon- helps fire up metabolism, stabilize blood sugar and is an anti-inflammatory
Turmeric- is an anti-inflammatory , aids weight management and helps with cancer prevention and liver detoxification. Take with black pepper to help boost benefits.
Ginger- another great inflammatory, helps digestion, eases nausea and migraines and helps fight colds.
Green Tea- full of antioxidants, helps with cancer prevention and speeds up metabolism.
Yerba Mate-has 24 vitamins and 15 amino acids, has a higher level of antioxidants than even broccoli or blueberries, which in turn helps slow aging and cancer prevention. Another great tea that helps speed up metabolism.
Hope you found this helpful in creating your delicious, healthy detox drinks.