Integrative Health Blog

Superfood Hacks: How to Get the Most Out of Your Superfoods

Posted by on Wed, Jul 15, 2015

There is a good, better, and a best way of doing anything in life, and when it comes to the best way to consume your superfoods, there is no exception. However, before we get into that, it might be best to take a moment to acknowledge where we are and how far we have come on our path to wellness. If you have been making an effort to incorporate superfoods into your diet, then go right ahead and pat yourself on the back for being such an adventurous advocate for your health. If you haven’t explored superfoods yet, and are beginning to wonder if I am talking about Superman’s diet, then not to worry; you will learn a few crucial superfood hacks that some people take years to learn. In this article we are going to explore the best preparation methods for my three favorite superfoods, taking into consideration both their traditional preparations and current science on achieving maximum absorption of what makes them “super”.

Goji, and Chia, and Maca, Oh My!

Read More

Superfoods: How to Make Chia Seed Gel

Posted by on Mon, Jul 06, 2015

Chia is a nutritious seed that packs one powerhouse punch.

It is a great source of soluble fiber, minerals such as calcium, magnesium, manganese, and phosphorous, antioxidants, and omega-3s. Chia seeds can easily be sprinkled into oatmeal or baked into muffins, however the most versatile way to consume chia seeds is by making chia seed gel.

Chia Seed Gel Recipe

You will need:

  • 3 T Chia seeds (preferably ground)
  • 2 cups filtered water
  • A jar with a lid
Read More

Tags: superfoods, omega fatty acids, chia seeds

Turmeric, an Anti-Inflammatory Supplement

Posted by on Fri, Jul 03, 2015

Are you aware of the many anti-inflammatory properties found in turmeric?

I listed the properties in a previous article in a recipe for turmeric milk. There are over 7,800 studies done on the benefits of turmeric! Reviewing these studies, Duke University concluded that turmeric appears to outperform many pharmaceuticals in its effects against several chronic, debilitating diseases, and does so with virtually no adverse side effects (source).

I love to add turmeric to soups and other dishes but I don’t add it as often as I would like and I don’t use a large enough amount to reap all of its benefits. I had a little issue with a back spasm this week and immediately made an appointment with my chiropractor, Dr. Coy Roskosky, because he has a track record for always taking my pain away. During my appointment he reminded me to increase my anti-inflammatory foods. In need of acute inflammation help, I was very close to gulping down a spoonful of turmeric but quickly changed my mind after gagging at the thought of it. That’s when I created these turmeric balls- they are quick, convenient and delicious! (I mean not as delicious as raw cacao brownies, but I definitely licked the bowel when I was done). These little turmeric balls not only taste great, but they contain other ingredients that work synergistically with the anti-inflammatory properties of turmeric.

Read More

Tags: holistic nutrition, recipe, turmeric

Healthy Living: How Much Water Should You Drink?

Posted by on Mon, Jun 29, 2015

Water cleans, purifies, enlivens, refreshes, and quenches thirst. It splashes, rains, runs and makes everything grow…water is this unique substance that seems to contain the essence of life itself. Water, like food, is a study into itself.

Water is critical for health because of the many benefits:

•Increases immune function (significant increase in white blood cells)

•Boosts energy metabolism

•Enhances weight loss

•Superior hydration of body and blood

•Cardiovascular health benefits and blood pressure regulation

•Cellular detoxification

•Improves skin elasticity

Detoxifies the bowel and relieves constipation

Water is as much a nutrient as food

Read More

Tags: water, detoxification

New Produce Rating System at Whole Foods Market

Posted by on Wed, Jun 24, 2015

Whole Foods Market has unveiled its new rating system called Responsibly Grown for fruits, vegetables and flowers. This system rates produce as “Good” “Better” or “Best”. You would think that fruits and vegetables with the “best” rating would mean just that…..the highest quality.

That was not the case, this spring, at a Whole Foods Market store in California. Organic asparagus, grown in California, carried the green “good” label while conventionally grown asparagus from Mexico received the gold “best” label in these photos below from The Cornucopia Institute article:

Mark Kastel, co-founder and Senior Farm Policy Analyst at Cornucopia asks, “Why would a customer pay three dollars more per pound for the Certified Organic asparagus when they could buy what a trusted retailer has labeled ‘Best’?”

Read More

Tags: nutrient dense food, organic food, nutrition

Holistic Nutrition Recipe for Divine Raw Brownies

Posted by on Wed, Jun 17, 2015

 

I’m about to change your life. Ready?

Raw brownies.

Who knew brownies could be packed with protein, omega 3 fatty acids, fiber, and antioxidants? These raw brownies are made with wholesome ingredients. Best of all, they are made without an oven! Unless you don’t have a dehydrator…then you’ll need your oven. But make sure to keep the oven temperature under 115 degrees, to keep these brownies alive and raw.

You will be totally surprised at how incredibly rich and satisfying these are with just six ingredients.

I don’t buy dessert or sweet things. It makes it a lot more fun when I’m in the mood for chocolate because it makes me get creative with it. I use to have a sweet tooth, but ever since I started drinking kombucha my sugar cravings have pretty much disappeared. But let’s face it- sometimes I want some chocolate! I use to just mix cacao, coconut oil and honey in a bowl, and that would completely satisfy my need. But now, I have really upped my game with raw brownies!

Brownie Ingredients

Read More

Tags: holistic nutrition, raw food, recipe

Balance Your Hormones Naturally

Posted by on Mon, Jun 15, 2015

Hormones play an important role in your life every day.

They are your body’s chemical messengers, traveling in your bloodstream to tissues and organs. They play a role in your growth, metabolism, sexual function, reproduction and mood. If you doubt the power of hormones and their ability to affect everything from mood, to weight, to bowel health – ask the nearest pregnant woman if she’s noticed any difference in these areas. Or, just for fun, ask the nearest 13 year old girl!

Endocrine glands, which are special groups of cells, make hormones. The major endocrine glands are the pituitary, pineal, thymus, thyroid, adrenal glands, and pancreas. In addition, men produce hormones in their testes and women produce them in their ovaries. 

Read More

Tags: thyroid, hormone balance, adrenal fatigue, integrative health, holistic approach

Are Calories Important?

Posted by on Tue, Jun 09, 2015

 

Calories in, calories out. A calorie is a calorie is a calorie....

As long as you expend the same amount of calories that you take in then you can be healthy, not gain weight and feel good, right?

This has been taught - and still is being taught - by health professionals around the country and the world.

But is it sound advice?

Read More

Tags: carbohydrates, healthy fats, holistic nutrition

My Big Fat Experiment: Fat Makes You Fat, Right?

Posted by on Wed, May 27, 2015

Is it really possible to grow a 6 pack of abs and still eat butter? I had to find out.  

November 2013: I sat in my NYC hotel room looking into the mirror. I felt swollen in my jeans as my muffin-top was puffing out of them. It was actually difficult to zip them but I squeezed in anyway. It was time to start getting ready for a formal, black tie event. I was not feeling pretty. In my head I thought, "So I guess this is 45"...argh.
Early February, while hosting doctor day at the Raw Living Expo, in Los Angeles, I met a handful of physicians that looked amazing in their 50's and 60's. Re-inspired, I returned home with a new commitment to hit the gym for 3 full hours every single day. I was faithful to this for 3 months. Guess what? I got bigger, not better. I started to get some joint and back injuries too, due to my lack of recovery and over-exercising. I had to start seeing a chiropractor and I was now taking anti-inflammatory supplements such as MSM and bromelian. So that was lousy. I was no better off than before this experiment and had wasted a lot of time.
Plan #2: Abandon plan #1 and start incorporating healthy fats, including raw grass fed butter and ghee. Start Intermittent Fasting regularly and cut back on my exercise. I was skeptical of this plan, but kept going. My only regret is not taking photos of my puffy belly in the hotel room that night, because the results are difficult to believe.

Read More

Tags: carbohydrates, healthy fats, holistic nutrition

How Whole Food Can Help Us Heal

Posted by on Mon, May 18, 2015

Guest Blogger Allan Balliett, Founder of Fresh and Local CSA

Spring is the Time to Join a CSA

It's that time of the year when you have an opportunity to make a commitment to your wellness!  Assure your access to affordable, nutrient dense foods by joining a local CSA, Community Supported Agriculture. Dr. Mark McClure, founder of National Integrated Health Associates, explains the value of CSA food very well in this blog post, My Top Holistic Nutrition Tip.

My Passion for Whole Foods

I'm the founder and farmer of Fresh and Local CSA, located in Shepherdstown, West Virginia. I am a passionate advocate for properly grown, fresh, local produce. Over 20 years ago, after many conventional doctors had failed to help me, I healed myself of what can only be called a "wasting disease" by changing my diet from processed foods to a healthy diet of organic, whole foods. You can read about more my experiences in this article. Once I became well, I devoted my life to learning all I can about what makes whole foods nutritious, and how to grow foods for my neighbors that promote healing with every mouthful.

Food as Medicine

A host of health promoting substances has been discovered in vegetables and fruits and plant metabolites in the last few years. It's reasonable to believe that we will discover many more health promoting substances in the future. It's also important to realize that these substances occur synergistically in living plants, in ratios and quantities that are supporting life and growth. This is why our bodies may heal from living real food while it may be unable to assimilate the content of a pill. It's important to be aware that most of the produce in grocery stores may be weeks old before it comes to the floor! In those weeks, the plant itself has been metabolizing the nutrients it contains, eating them up to stay alive until you end up buying low mineral content produce that is less nutritious because it's been out of the Earth for so long.

Read More

Tags: CSA, nutrient dense food, holistic nutrition