Featured

Eating for Ethics vs. Eating for Health

I had a very interesting conversation with a colleague tonight.  It was about the choice of eating a plant based lifestyle and whether people will stick with it more for ethical reasons or for health reasons.  I was first introduced to plant based eating as a moral/religious choice when I was a child.  We had neighbors from India who were Hindu.  Believing in the reincarnation and the caste system, they did not consume animal product for the belief that it could be someone they knew in a former life.  To this day, I appreciate my parents and their open mindedness/acceptance to different beliefs and sharing that with me and my sister.  I contribute my acceptance of different food choices people make to my parents and for me, I believe, it has assisted me in my culinary endeavors.  I turned to natural foods 16 years ago,  first as a way to make my ‘niche’ in the culinary world (and to pay the bills) and then finding my soul contract in the holistic culinary world.

The predominant theme that comes up on a regular basis, in the natural food world, the culinary world, and in the medical field is plant based eating.  Now, in technical terms, even in the world of raw foods, plant based eating may be defined as 80% plant based and/or raw.  I will, by my own terminology, say 98% of raw foodies out there are plant based, and I am open to be corrected by that at any given time.  Ethically and medically speaking, I am sure one would recommend 100% plant based, and here is where my topic begins –  Will one turn to plant based eating and stick with it more due to ethical reasons or for health reasons?

I was called out on the subject of plant based eating today in conversation today.  Why do you eat animal product and yet promote plant based eating?  Well,I consider myself  a plant based eater int he fact that I am 80% plant based. That being said, my answer was “I am too lazy at this point in my life to be 100% plant based.”  I am totally aware of the benefits of plant based eating, and if faced with a life changing health issue, I would go 100%, but with my family right now. I cannot commit to it.  I am a seasonal raw eater.  As it gets to the cooling seasons, Fall and Winter, I notice my body needs ‘warming foods’ TCM speaking.  I know that benefits of raw foods – enzymes, pH balance, active nutrition, yet my body tells me when it is time to have something softer in my system.  But back to the ethical vs. health question.  Why consume another mammal’s milk whether it is to drink it or as cheese or any other condiment?  You are taking away the mammal’s baby’s food.  Conventionally speaking, yes, we probably are.  Organically speaking, we are not.  The babies are weaned.  And, back in the day, and probably still today in many cultures including our own, one mammal is kept for milk purposes whereas the Mama mammal is kept with her babies until they are all grown and ready to feed off the land.  Similar to how livestock and poultry are raised conventionally vs. organically.  I am not going to get into horror stories, you can watch them on your own if you choose to ( Food Inc., Forks over Knives, etc), and they are true.  And so is the truth about how too much protein, especially animal protein can destroy your health, from a medical standpoint.  And it can also be proven that too much refined soy product can damage your health.  And then you can get into raising GMO produce and how it is destroying the earth.

Where do you start and where do you stop?  Where is your standpoint on how you eat?  Why are you at where you are at?  Does what you eat make a difference in your life?  Does where the food you eat come from make a difference in your food choices?  Does how the animal product being raised factor in to your mind when choosing what you are buying and consuming?  There is scientific proof that the hormones consumed by/released from the livestock/poultry is passed onto us when we consume it.  that includes the cortisol, growth hormones (which of course are not being used anymore) and the insulin,  Does how the produce is sourced from/being grown (GMO, Non-GMO), that you consume enter into your thoughts when purchasing?   How about the bottom line that what you are eating makes all the difference in the world for your quality of life?  

See the point was brought up to me that more people fall off the plant based eating protocol wagon if it is for health reasons vs. for ethical reasons.  Well, from a culinary standpoint, I have known a vegan who enjoyed making all types of food, including steaks and fish, just because it what people enjoyed.  The person would not taste it or consume the product, but it was for others to enjoy.  When asked why I would feed my children (albeit organic) cheese even though I choose to be dairy free,  my answer is it is a treat, not something they consume pounds of on a daily basis.  And what about all the plant based eaters out in the world that continue to consume ‘fake’ animal product ( Tofurkey, unchicken nuggets, seitan meat, ‘eggless’ salad) yet preach the evils of animal product consumption?  Those processed foods are just as bad for you as the regular processed foods, if not worse. I think, if one chooses to eat a certain way, for whatever that reason is, it is just like any other choice we make in our lives.  If we choose to stop smoking and start again, or go on a diet and regain weight, or of course there is ALWAYS to exercise wheel.

To me, it is a matter of self discipline and how you are able to manage your life.  Growing up around food, I was blessed with being able to have an educated, and discerning palate.  We had to eat what was served to us.  I like to believe that I am carrying that on with my children ( I think).  Moderation and education are the key here in my formula. I know plenty of people who don’t care how livestock is being raised as long as it tastes good on their plate.  But when faced with health issues, have changed their eating habits, even if it is only to consume organic.  Yet it is a beginning.  Because when you feel better from such a little change, bigger benefits are around the corner.  And then so are the next changes that happen.

I am Adrienne Falcone Godsell, The Food Whisperer (formerly Your Favorite Foodie).  Holistic Chef and Orthomolecular Health Advocate.  Find me on FB The Food Whisperer, Twitter  URFVR8FDIE, and Linkedin.

Featured

A Little Lost?

Hey there!  How’s it going?  I read an article a little bit ago, and it reaffirmed something I all ready knew and a bet you do too.  Unfortunately, I did not write the name of the article or the author (something that I am sure the author would appreciate and I need to be in the habit of doing), but it basically said, even when you do get lost, remember you will always find your way out when you are ready.

Now here is the thing – How many of us ‘Fall off the wagon’, or ‘go off our diet’, or get too busy and stop exercising, or break our cleanse, Whatever?  So what do we do about it?  Put off getting back on track until a more convenient time, right?

I am going to be brutally honest, because I have been begun to be brutally honest with myself lately (note I said “BEGUN”).  When is that convenient time going to be?  There are Always going to be holidays, there are Always going to be deadlines, there are Always going to be friends, family, children crisis’.  Seriously, why are you not taking your life and health seriously?  What are you hiding from?  Do you like to be less than the person you could be?  

You are AMAZING!  I am Amazing!  We all wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for us all working together.  Why are you blaming and hurting the one(S) you love the most for your own lack of self esteem?  They all ready know how AWESOME you are – you won’t accept it.  and it doesn’t matter how many people tell you, or how much in so many different ways you are told,  until you LIKE yourself, you will continue to stay on the same path you are on.

Life gets discouraging and sometimes downright scary.  If it weren’t for these times, we wouldn’t appreciate the good times.  And it wouldn’t give us a reason to ask for help from others and have us work together.  But we have to work as a team and not let the ones you ask for help from to do all the work and then blame them for things not going how you want them to.   YOU have to be accountable for YOU.  No One else can be accountable for You.  Get what I am saying?

Whether it is work, health, relationships, spirituality, you are accountable for you, even when you are lost.  Joyce Meyer says “You do your best and let God do the rest.”  Funny because my headmaster at my grade school Dr. Norwood E. Band had ‘mind training’ season each year where he would produce  a writing (not a poem) and ended up with a collection of them.  Then, we had I think 6 -8 weeks where we had an opportunity to learn them (not memorize, we would not receive anything for rote learning with these), for a monetary reward.  This one came back to me a few years ago and I want to share it with you now.  Today by Dr. Norwood E. Band

Today

Today is yours  Claim it!!!

This life is yours  Live it!!!

In the Claiming of the day

The unimportant fades away

Little details have a way

of robbing you of the day.

Are you afraid of the unknown?

Those troubled seeds of doubt have sown.

Face the day as meant for you,

Pass the darkest places through, learning each day how to live

to the next a Promise gives.

Of the best,  Yet to Be

Claim it!

Live it!

Victory!!!!!

 

Remember who you are.  Remember where you are going.  And if you need to get on a different path to get there, SO WHAT?  Just don’t take the easiest way, because you are cheating yourself, and selling yourself (and everyone whose life you touch) short of the significance you are to make in this world.  I’ve been lost.  I am sure it’ll happen again.  But what I am reminding myself now is that it is an adventure instead of curling up in a ball and denying I have anything to do with it.

What about you?

Featured

Are Your Daily Vitamins Keeping You Young or Aging You?

I believe that everyone deserves the right to know what’s really in their food, and in their supplements so they can be absolutely sure they’re really getting what they paid for.  Do you?

According to Dr. Linus Pauling, two-time Nobel Prize winner   “You can trace every ailment, every sickness, and every disease to a vitamin and mineral deficiency.”

For those of us (like me) who really want to stay young as we grow old, who want vibrant skin, plenty of energy, want go to the beach and not be embarrassed by the way we look, and wake up every day just feeling great, what we put into our bodies is of vital importance.

Do we really need extra vitamins and minerals?

That question is one of the most asked of nutritionists and health experts. It probes deep to the core of what is truly required to be healthy. If we just eat a good diet, get regular exercise and “take care” of ourselves, shouldn’t that be enough?

The answer, unfortunately, is a resounding “no.”

Mark Hyman, M.D., founder and medical director of Ultra Wellness Center in Lenox, Mass. and author of The Ultra Simple Diet, writes “If people eat wild, fresh, organic, local, non-genetically modified food grown in virgin mineral-rich soils, that has not been transported across vast distances and stored for months before being eaten… and work and live outside, breathe only fresh unpolluted air, drink only pure, clean  water, sleep nine hours a night, move their bodies every day and are free from chronic stressors and exposure to environmental toxins, then perhaps, they might not need supplements.”

For the rest of us supplements are an absolute necessity.

So, what kind of supplements do we need? Are all supplements equal?  And if they’re not, what should we look for in a vitamin and mineral supplement?

Just as we have become more aware of the need to read labels on the foods we eat, we also need to learn to read the labels of our nutritional supplements. 

 

Living things can be produced only from living things, never from non–living matter. Natural foods contain live vitamins, organic minerals, enzymes, and other vital, functional, alive components, all organized (organically) by the sun, rain, water, soil’s nutrients, and living bacteria.

Foods contain innumerable substances, many of which are—and may always be—unknown, that produce a combined effect to which a single ingredient cannot compare.

It’s important to know that you should not use “tablets” or “liquid” vitamin supplements. Tablets must add binders and are often so hard that they never dissolve. Liquid supplements must be heated to a high degree, which will literally destroy and degrade the natural compounds, as well as digestive enzymes or probiotics.  A powder form, added to a drink, or encapsulated are best.

There are about 110 companies who sell vitamins in the United States. Fewer than 5 of them use whole food based vitamins. The reason is simple: Whole food vitamins are expensive to make. It costs about twice as much for a good quality supplement.

Americans spend over $25 billion per year on supplements for synthetic vitamins that are, at best, providing only marginal benefits, and at worst, making us sicker. Common sense dictates it’s better to pay more for a high quality, whole-food supplement than to purchase inferior-grade products that probably won’t give you any benefits.

After all, don’t you agree if you don’t have your health, nothing else really matters?

Eat whole foods when you take your vitamins. As stated, all  nutrients usually require other compounds or nutrients (sometimes called co-factors) to function correctly in the body. If you are eating fresh fruits, vegetables, and whole grains when taking your supplements, it means there will be a good variety of compounds available to act as co-factors giving you a greater chance your products will be functioning as they should.

Chemically “pure” refined, fractionated and synthetic vitamins, on the other hand, are dead, inert materials, non-perishable and devoid of enzymes.

 

Ideally, all your supplements should adhere to the same criteria for good health: made from “fresh, organic, local non-genetically modified food grown in virgin mineral-rich soils”, and processed within hours of picking to ensure maximum nutritional content.

Check your multi. Does it say “ascorbic acid”?  That’s only 1 part of Vitamin C. The other 7 parts are missing, and you’ll only find them in a natural whole-food source.  Look instead for vitamin C that comes from Acerola Cherries, with all of its goodness intact.

Does the label on your multi say  “cholecalciferol” next to the “Vitamin D”?  Did you know that cholecalciferol is actually sourced from irradiated lamb’s wool?  (At first, I didn’t believe it either, but it’s true. Check it out on Wikipedia.)  Instead, look for Vitamin D that comes from organic mushrooms, or other whole food sources.

Whole food vitamins are obtained by taking a vitamin-rich  plant, removing the water and the fiber in a cold vacuum process, free of chemicals, and then packaging for stability. In this way, the entire vitamin complex can be captured intact, retaining its functional and nutritional integrity. It should be processed immediately after picking.

Consuming whole food based supplements will help bridge the gap between your diet and the nutrition you need for optimal health. And by supplementing with the good of whole foods, you’ll avoid all the problems associated with vitamin supplements, and nourish your body for a life well lived.

And, best of all, your whole food vitamins will keep you young instead of making you old.  Isn’t it wonderful to really get what you paid for?

 

 

Adrienne Falcone Godsell has worked with Touchstone Essentials, a company based in Raleigh, North Carolina from its beginning stages.  Touchstone Essentials ships absolutely pure, whole food nutritional supplements to over 35 countries.

 

Being a nutrition coach after being in the culinary field for 25 years, Adrienne has made it her mission to empower people who are sick and tired of being sick and tired, through education, that they can change their health through food that tastes good and is good for them.

 E-mail Adrienne at afalconegodsel@gmail.com to receive a FREE, simple to use, vitamin chart that will take out all the guesswork for you and make it easy for you to tell whether any supplement is whole food or synthetic .

http://www.AdrienneFalconeGodsell.com

Featured

Something a Little Different

Hey there!  I was getting a little bored with my blogs, so I had to find what I wanted to do different.  So here we go.

Juicing has become that latest and greatest craze for those wanting the ‘quick fix’, yet it is also the best way to get and stay healthy.  When done properly.  So now I’m telling you there are rules to juicing too?  Well, there are a few if you have intentions of juicing for health.  There are all sorts of suggestions as far as which type of juicer is best, I am not getting into that.  What I am going to give you some info on is how and what to juice together.  Here we go! 

As far as I am concerned, with all the info I have read and learned, you start your day with a greens juice.  What does that consist of Adrienne?  I am happy you asked.  when I say ‘Greens’ juice, it can mean a number of things, as long as certain foods are NOT combined.    Fruit, greens, ginger, lemon, cucumber, zucchini, cilantro, broccoli, cauliflower, yellow squash, green beans – all are okay.  Just don’t mix carrot or tomato with the fruit.  Messes up the whole digestive/nutrient absorption process.  From there, you may juice all your choice of veggies together, including carrots, beets, and tomatoes.  Many people like to juice their fruit in a juicer.  While it is a great source of nutrients,  when it comes to various illnesses/dis-eases, juicing fruits is a concentrated source of sugars (albeit fruit sugars) but nonetheless sugars that can be doing more damage than help.  Same goes for those on a weight reduction protocol.  Do your fruit with your greens.  It kills 2 birds with one stone.

Also, have your fruits before noon.  After that stick to veggies.  It all boils down to fruit fermenting in your tummy – not a pretty feeling, sound or smell.  We are working on strengthening oyur gut and immune system not growing bad bacteria.

So, now that i have gotten away from my point, here are soem of my favorite juices:

1 pear, 1 inch piece of ginger, 1/3 cucumber and 1/3 – 1/2 head of romaine

1 orange, 1 inch piece of ginger, 4 leave kale, 1/3 cucumber

1 granny smith apple, 1/3 cucumber, 3 stalks celery, 2 – 3 leaves of Swiss chard, 1/3 lemon

1 granny smith apple, 3 stalks celery, 1 inch piece ginger, 1/3 lemon, 3 leaves kale

1 pear, 1 bu watercress, 1 inch piece ginger

1 granny smith apple, 1/2 bu parsley, 2 stalks celery, 1/3 cucmber

These are all 8 -12 oz juices.  Just like any other food we put into our bodies, our stomach can only digest so much at one time and the rest is stored.  If you want another juice in 45 minutes, do it, your boduy has digested what you drank, but having a 24 oz juice isn’t going to do any more for your health than a 12oz.

Remember – greens, fruit, veggies.

Have fun  🙂

 

 

http://www.AdrienneFalconeGodsell.com

 

Featured

Foods and Moods

That’s a mouthful isn’t it?  I was up the other night flipping through channels, and it is amazing how the number of  food commercials increases as the evening progresses.  Not only that, but also how they change from healthy to bingey foods.  Which brings me to my topic du jour – Foods and Moods.  Similar to ‘Which came first, the chicken or the egg?”  Seriously, think about it – do we eat according to our mood or does our mood change with what we eat?

One of my nutrition books, Putting it All Together: the New Orthomolecular Nutrition, by Abram Hoffer and Morton Walker, connects even psychological disorders with malnutrition.  “In 1940 about 20% of the food consumed in this country was processed.  Today (1996, so add another 17 years) it is close to 75%.  we consume the elements of our own destruction, wit our excessive intake of sugar and unsaturated fts, loss of bulk or fiber, elimination of vitamins and minerals, and the pollution of food with chemicals never demonstrated to be safe.”  Pretty heavy, yet all together true stuff.  We have gone from eating living, fresh, nontoxic, naturally flavored foods to dead (irradiated to survive shipping), artificial (even our rums and vodkas have multiple flavors, not mention our water enhancers), monotonous, artifact (isolated components of foods i.e. sugars, fats, proteins) foods.   And LIKE IT!!!

So if we are eating fake foods and drinking imaginary beverages because they taste good, does it make a person wonder why our bodies ad minds are in such bad shape?  Our bodies are searching for nutritents to survive and our minds are lacking the nutritents to function – normally much less naturally.  Let me put it this way – I am putting a Stress presentation together, and in a recent Harvard study, they were talking about the fact that the body needs seratonin to stop the stress response from continuing.  Where do we get this from?  Complex carbs and fats.  What is the average American’s go to?  Sugars and fats.  And not the good fats, we go for the ice cream and the pizza and the bar and the chocolate.  What happens next?  The stress belly and insulin resistance due to excessive  consumption.

What can I do about this vicious cycle, you may ask.  A Cornell study came up with the fact that even medications cause the weight gain.  You think?  It’s kind of like putting a band aid on an insect bite.  It covers it up so you don’t see it, but it still itches and it is still there.  Now wait, I am all about treating the acute.  That being said, you still need to treat the seed of the cause.  Ironically enough, there is now a commercial with Sanjay Gupta talking about working through stress with exercise, breathing and proper eating (think).

My question to you is – do you eat to live or live to eat?  Do you find ways to eat the foods oyu know are bad fr your health to justify eating them?  They are only  really bad band aid that doesn’t solve the real problem.  Start with eliminating the bad stuff and replacing it with the foods that satisfy your body and your mind.  Find a friend or a good shrink along with an exercise program you like.  Then, as you notice that your health goes from -10 to  +15, or your waist from a size 18 to a size 7, celebrate!  And you’ll notice you are reaching for the stuff that got you there – whole foods, fresh foods, water, breathing, exercise and a new outlook on life.

 

http://www.AdrienneFalconeGodsell.com

Featured

On a More Serious Note About Our Food

Good Morning,

I have been pondering a few things lately as far as the food we eat and what it does in our bodes, to our bodies, and for our bodies.   See here’s the thing,  I had heard last week on Duke and The Doctor, that in the latest statistics, we as a nation are fatter than we were 20 years ago.  I think it’s 11 pounds for women and 14 pounds for men.  The average weight for a woman is now 156 pounds.  I’m sorry, how can that be?  We have all this low fat, non fat, sugar free, 100 calorie portion control going on, right?  So how can we be fatter?  I know there are too many mind tricks being played on the general population, because clothing sizes haven’t changed but the way they are being cut sure is.  A size 6 now is what a size 8 or 10 used to be.  Smalls fit me the way a medium does.  Want proof?  Go to a thrift store (especially a vintage one) and try on whatever size you are wearing now of something say 15 years ago and see how it fits.  Unless its low rise, skinny jeans, the size isn’t the same.

We are a fatter generation.  How did we get this way?  We’re drinking diet soda, no fat ice cream and 100 calorie snacks.  Well, we are also sitting at our desks, driving to and from work, collapsing on our couches when we get home and ordering takeout.  Does that in any shape or form model our activity/intake levels 75 years ago?  I understand I opened speaking about the 20 year difference which is incredibly disturbing, but think about how much more disease has grown in the past 75 years and we are supposed to be making advances in medicine.  

When are we going to take accountability for ourselves and our choices?  Science and medicine have proven to us that low fat/fat free, sugar free, and 100 calorie foods don’t help us.  Weston Price has oodles of research on the importance of good fats and their importance not only in bone and teeth health, but also, heart and mental health.  Can’t we just look at our sugar logs and blood test results to see that drinking ad eating sugar free foods isn’t helping our  health?  Our waistlines are growing in spite of consuming these products.  

And isn’t it funny how there are these ‘new’ ideas about juicing for heath?  On television the other afternoon, in a regular time slot, Montel Williams had a half hour program about his new blender and people who want to change their lives (health, obesity) and this is their last ditch effort.  Imagine, improving your health by adding raw fruits and veggies to your everyday routine?  Living enzymes to alkalize the body and help it heal.And what else happens?  Weight loss, sugar regulation, lower cholesterol and blood pressure, no more arthritis, skin conditions improving, digestive disorders gone.

We know that by eating foods not in the box, bag or can make a difference.  Shopping the perimeter of the grocery store makes all the difference in the world.  Put lemon and olive oil on your salad instead of dressing from a bottle.  Use sea salt instead of table salt, you’ll use less and crave less.  Have those 3 pieces of fruit and you won’t crave the sugar. Take your fish oils daily, eat some avocado. Your body won’t crave fat, salt and sugar when you feed your body the nourishment it needs.  

We’ll get into GMO’s and organic another time.  Right now, i just want to give you some food for thought.  For more research, check out my Touchstone link for some cool blogs.

http://www.bestofbothworlds.mytouchstoneessentials.com/

http://www.AdrienneFalconeGodsell.com

 

Featured

What if?

Did you ever have one  of those weeks that turned into one of those months?  And it was probably right when you had the plan all laid out because you were sick and tired of being sick and tired.  Exercise, cutting out the half bottle of wine every night, emptied all the candy out of your office and a refrigerator full of food that was good for you.  And then what happened?  it started out as a bad day at work, that traveled into the evening trip home only to find out that the garbage disposal was clogged, the dishwasher was never filled and your family was coming to visit this weekend not next.  So, now you are sleeping until the very last minute because you are so tired, it take that extra cup of coffee in the afternoon just to keep you going, you are doing the happy dance it is the holiday time because bite size bags of candy are everywhere (they are so convenient to grab on the way to your next meeting!),   and you are stressed because the holiday party is in three weeks and your fat clothes are getting tight.

How do you break this cycle that happens EVERY year?  You mean to tell me this can be stopped?  This isn’t the way life is lived?  I have this game I play called “What if?”  It started a long time ago and I didn’t realize I was doing it until I fell off the wagon and picked up the book The Power of Positive thinking Trilogy by Norman Vincent Peale.  Basically, this man has compiled life  stories of people who have refused to focus on the negative, don’t make excuses for things in their live and make themselves accountable for their thoughts.  His clients have even gone about this in a scientific fashion to see if thinking positively makes a difference.  and after a 3 or 6 month study, even the most negative of thinker had 87% positive results when focusing on the positive.

Which brings me to the “What if?” game.  Here is how it is played.  Remember as a child you would sit there and think and ask your parents, teacher, grown u, friend “What if” questions?  And we would drive them crazy!  We wanted answers and were looking at every possible scenario possible.  (at least I did).  So what if, every time you ran into a problem, instead of FREAKING OUT and going for the next candy bar or martini, you sat back for a few minutes and considered everything else going on?  For example – Your are running late for your meeting across town because your client  had to tell you about her grandchild’s latest accomplishment.  What if that meant you missed the car wreck that very well could have been your own had you not listened to that story?  Or maybe that annoying person in line behind you talking at full blast on their phone?  What if it is the last time they are going to be talking to half deaf grandpa on the phone? 

We simply don;t know what is going to happen next, so why not enjoy what is in front of us?  Is it worth permitting yourself to gain 5-8 pounds during the holiday season when your blood pressure is all ready high?  Or would it be better to give yourself permission to let yourself sleep in on the weekend because you have been working out 5 days a week?  Is it worth having that extra flavored coffee drink with the extra sugar, cream, and calories when you all ready know how drained you are going to feel in two hours?  Or would it be better to go 2 doors down to the Juice Bar and get a carrot juice with a shot of wheat grass (maybe not your flavor of the week, but the immune bonuses are incredible along with the energy rush that doesn’t quit)?

Do you get what I’m saying?  “What if” you act on your inner voice saying it’s not all that bad?  “What if” you fa;; off the wagon and get back on the next day?  “What if”you restructure YOUR game plan to a DOABLE lifestyle enhancement for you vs what the magazine/tv show/pintrest plan says?  “What if” you  start playing the “What if” game and things go wrong every so often?  I can pretty much guarantee you it won’t happen a much as it has been.   And that you won’t have the weight gain, health issues, wrinkle lines, and sleep issues that you would have if you don’t try it for 3 months

What is it going to hurt you to play the “What if” game?  Scientifically proven to improve your life.

 

 

Adrienne Falcone Godsell is a certified clinical nutritionist who loves to coach those who are sick and tired of being sick and tired about their different eating options.

Find her on FB at Best of Both Worlds, on You Tube at Your Favorite Foodie, on the web for monthly specials at bestofbothworldssimpleandtastynutrition.yolasite.com,  on tiwitter @URFVR8FDIE and on  Linkedin.

Featured

To Eat and What to Eat? That is the Question.

Good Morning and welcome to a new week.  Since food is my passion and assisting people with their health through the food they eat is my calling, I thought this would be a good topic, seeing all the various food choices we have.

There is so much information out there about what foods are good for you, what is healthy, what is natural, what has the best source of fiber, calcium, iron, etc.  The thing I find funny though, is how more than half the information out there is hurting people more than helping them.  For example, sugar free products.  Great!!  No more sugar, no more diabetes, no more weight gain, no extra calories.  But then why is there so much more obesity than there was 20 years ago, and why has diabetes doubled?  Well, since the yellow packet  sweetener is made from removing one molecule for m sugar and replacing it with three chlorine atoms, the body is still treating it like sugar.  What does that mean?  When there is excess sugar in the body, it stores it as fat.  How much ‘diet drinks’ are consumed daily?  On the radio show ‘Duke and the Doctor’, a couple months ago, they were talking about the fact that the yellow sweetener has been proven to raise A1C levels.  Can we say diabetes is here to stay?

Let’s talk about fiber for a minute or two.  The source of fiber is just as important if not more than important as getting the right amount. Brown basmati rice, amaranth(it’s a funky little superfood with oodles of fiber and great taste), lentils, black beans, broccoli, kale, apples, dates, almonds, quinoa, are all great sources of fiber.   There are so many more ads about constipation and gas and digestive distress. Celiacs’ Disease/gluten intolerance is now very well know terminology vs. 8 years ago.  Products are being labeled gluten free and there re all sorts of breads, bake mixes and baked goods out now.  With GMO wheat, our bodies no longer know how to digest it.  There was an article in last week’s paper saying that Russia has banned GMO corn because of its link to creating  cancer in our bodies.  My own personal experience with wheat and gluten has taken me the gluten free route even though I have not tested positive for gluten allergies.  By removing gluten from my eating, I have lost about 5 pounds, and no longer have bloating or constipation issues.  Which of the three is the selling point for you?

Dairy.  What about dairy?  We need it for calcium and protein and helps us lose weight right?  How many people do you know with lactose intolerance issues, gas, diarrhea, bloating, constipation, or IBS?  It’s rather common these days.  Oh just have lactose free milk.  Ummm, if you have an intolerance why have the same product in a different form?  That’s like saying the pan in the oven is hot, so take the pan out of the oven and then you don’t need to use hot mitts.  The pan is STILL HOT!!!  There is more absorbable calcium in broccoli, and kale and beans, than there is in pasturized milk.  What about all the vegans and vegetarians in the world that don’t eat calcium and have super dense bones?  They are doing something right.  If you want cheese, eat goat cheese or sheep cheese.  Almond milk is a great alternative to milk.  Coconut Bliss is one the best ice creams out there AND is sweetened with agave nectar vs. sugar.

There is a new diet book out called the Virgin Diet – lose 7 pounds avoiding these 7 foods.  If I had been smart enough to label a detox this way I’d be raking it in right now. Get rid of sugar, gluten, dairy, corn, soy, artificial sweeteners, and any form of MSG (including caramel color, disodium inosinate and disodium guyalanate) and you’ll lose weight.  Pretty simple huh?  Go back to eating what God has created for us from the earth and watch your health improve.  I have.

 

 

Adrienne Falcone Godsell is a nutrition coach and natural food personal chef.  You can find her on the web at bestofbothworldssimpleandtastynutrition.yolasite.com, FB page Best of Both Worlds, her weekly vlog on You Tube – Your Favorite Foodie Adrienne Falcone Godsell, and catch her tweets on Twitter @ URFVR8FDIE.

 

Is That Cocktail, Dessert, Coffee, Nacho Plate- You Fill In the Blank-Really Worth It?

So, over the Christmas holiday I did something that  I do not normally do, I indulged through January 2. Well, lets be clear, indulging for me is making and eating gluten free dairy free desserts, eating/drinking after p.m., eating whatever was at gatherings I attended (which were not many), stopping my intermittent fasting.  But still, I decided to say as most people say and do “What the heck, it’s the holidays, why should I deny myself?”

Why did I do this you ask? At Thanksgiving time, literally out of the blue, I gained 5-6 lbs.  Not doing anything different from my routine. Welcome to perimenopause in full swing.  I had just signed up to do my DUTCH test to see why exactly my hormones are as out of swing as they are and how to get things right, so I was waiting on the right time for my cycle to do said test. And this happens.  So, I said to myself “Self, eat how you want and lets see if anything changes. At this rate I might as well give my body a reason the GAIN weight.”

Well.  First off, dairy and I ARE NOT friends.  Gas, oh my gosh the gas.  Bloating, yuck! Wheat = inflammation in my body (as does for all bodies).  I had joint aches that I have not experienced since I had knee issues in college. My movement was so hindered when I would exercise (which I kept to ), that I almost felt winded getting up and down with different things.  WTH?????   Alcohol. Hello night sweats and TOTALLY interrupted sleep.  I was waking up slightly during the night around 2ish, but having a few drinks almost  every evening (with dinner and one after), that put me in a whole different ballpark of NO SLEEP.

And so, as December progressed, I played a little experiment with my body – how bad do different foods make a body feel and why do people think they are doing themselves a disservice by ‘denying” themselves food/beverages that make them feel SO BAD?????  I already gave you my results on the wheat, dairy, alcohol ingestion.  During this time, I would play around with, does it matter if it is organic wheat or conventional?  Does it matter if I eat a commercial dessert vs. my own?  I kept to my preservative free no added sulfite wines, but even that, while I am able to drink red wine again, drinking after 5-6 pm and no sleep are synonymous for me. And throw in a little digestive inflammation. I already know that hard liquor and commercial wine does not agree with me – hard liquor literally burns my tummy and commercial wine gives me night sweats, so I stayed away from that.  Beer I have not been big on for a while, so I did not “indulge” in that.  Oh wait, I did have a Sami Claus for Christmas shopping and THAT destroyed my head with a wicked headache and my gut just burned after it.

So, tell me people, Why?  WHY WHY WHY is it that you deserve to be eating/drinking that food/beverage choice that you know is going to make you feel terrible in the next 30 minutes to 4 hours?   What is so important about consuming something that hurts you? Does that instant gratification mean more to you, numbing some part of your mind/heart, stuffing something down your mouth when something really needs to be said,  have more importance to you than your total body, mind, soul health?

I get having a piece of something or a glass of something on occasion. But after the month of December, I can honestly say, it is NOT worth it for me.  I am in the cleansing process now of getting rid of all the yuk I ingested and taking a hard look at what I need to health next in my mind and heart.

We all have pain, sadness, grief, hurt, betrayal, bereavement, lies, foolishness, layers of these things in us.  I want to die healthy vs. living sick.  If you have read my book The Real Language Of Food Constructive Recipes For A Healthier You, you know I watched my mother live a slow painful death. Do you really believe you have to be sick to die? Do you really believe that aches, pains, health issues are part of getting older? Yes, there are certain things that happen Healthwise, but  you still have the option to live as optimally as possible for yourself.

I want to be as pan free and dis-ease free as possible for my nest 40+  years.  What about you?

PALEO APPLE PIE

I thought I would share recipe since everyone is making their 2021 resolutions to eat healthier. I am unsure where I found this recipe and modified it to make it easier for the average person, but it is a way to have your sweets without adding processed sugars and flours to your waistline .

R-Apple Pie

by The Food Whisperer-Adrienne Falcone Godsell

11/2 cup walnuts, raw                                                                                         3/4 cup raisins

1 tablespoon cocoa powder                                                                 4 medium apples peeled and cored

1/3 cup honey, raw                                                                                       1 tablespoon cinnamon

1/2 medium lemon, juiced                                           1/4 cup coconut, unsweetened shredded (optional)

1 teaspoon allspice (optional)

1. Wash and core the apples, let sit with lemon juice and 2 C water for 7 minutes.

2.  Make the crust by placing walnuts, raisins and cocoa powder in a food processor and process with the until finely ground (mixture will stick together).

3.  Line a 9 inch pie pan with mixture and form crust.

4. Cut apples into ¼’s ,  place in food processor 6 pieces at a time, and pulse /chop until cut into small pieces (be careful not to chop apples too finely and make apple sauce).

5.  In a large bowl, combine chopped apples, cinnamon, honey and dash of allspice (optional) together.

6.  Level out with a spatula.

7.  Sprinkle coconut flakes on top of mixture.

8.  Place in refrigerator for 1 hour to allow pie to set.

Adrienne’s Healthy Food Hacks

So you know you are supposed to be adding more fruits and veggies to your daily eating.  And you know that how much damage added sugar is doing to your body.  But are you really having to sacrifice flavor for health?  And really, how difficult is it going to be and how much are you going to have to sacrifice when you go out socially???

What if I said you won’t have to sacrifice anything and that all that is really required of you is self discipline?

In culinary school, my nutrition teacher was a vegetarian licensed dietician.   While her recipes left much to be desired when it came to real life preparation timing, one thing she taught left a lasting impression on me.   When talking about good fats and bad fats, flavor in food/the palate, and changing any habit, she said that it takes 10 days to cleanse the palate therefore changing your flavor cravings.  Culinarily speaking, fat coats the taste buds, smoothing out the flavor of whatever you are eating.  The first thing we identify on our taste buds is sweet – babies LOVE sweet foods which is why you must feed them fruits last when introducing food to them or you will have a very difficult time getting them to eat veggies.  Same when we get old, the sweet part of our taste buds is the strongest of them all (how many seniors do you know that love their dessert but won’t eat the rest of their meal?)  So when we take away the bad fats and we take away the added sweeteners both real and artificial, our taste buds will learn all sorts of new flavors and will become discerning about the foods you are eating.  AND as an added bonus, your body will begin to identify fake foods vs. real foods.

Let’s look at this another way –  you want to release those extra 10 pound (maybe 5?); you have heard that the inflammation and achy joints can go away with changing your eating habits; you are sick and tired of being sick and tired but all those crazy protocols out there are so time consuming it won’t fit into your schedule, so why bother?  But what if I told you it is pretty darn easy because I have found the way to make your food life easier?

Okay Adrienne how do you do this?

Well, let’s talk reality about all the info that is out there and what is practical about it.

Zoodles – Hmmm, are they the end all be all replacement for pasta?  NO.  Can you replace them in your favorite spaghetti dish seamlessly?  NO.  However – can you use them to make some awesome dishes that make zucchini seem amazing again?  YES!  I have a client who needs to stay away from grains and soy.  She loves zoodles.  I found a recipe for Asian Garlic Noodles.  I found Coconut Aminos that are Asian Garlic sauce.  I used the zoodles which take all of 3 minutes to flash saute, sliced garlic, chopped green onion and the Coconut Amino Garlic Sauce and BAM!  Instant Paleo Asian Garlic Zoodle.

4 medium zucchini, zoodled                                              3 green onion, chopped

3 large cloves garlic, thin slice                                            1 Tbsp Olive OIl

                        ¼ – 1/3 C Coconut Secret Coconut Aminos Garlic Sauce

  1.  Heat large saute pan on med high heat.
  2.  When hot, add oil, zoodles, and garlic.  Stir fry 2 -3 minutes (stir the zoodles every so often to distribute heat evenly).
  3.  Add Garlic sauce, stir to mix and IMMEDIATELY  remove from heat, add green onion and serve/

 Spaghetti Squash – Again, this will NOT take the place of pasta and I will not tell you it does.  I can tell you however that when you mix spaghetti squash with chicken/pork sausage and fresh basil/rosemary/thyme and Herbamare with garlic sautéed in your choice ghee, coconut oil or olive oil, it is a very tasty dish.  Um Adrienne, how do I cook spaghetti squash if I do not have a microwave?  425 degree oven, slice in half across the midsection (not lengthwise) place in pan with 2 inches of water and let it bake 15 – 40 minutes until it is soft to the touch.  I will not commit to a time because sizes on squash vary and oven temperatures vary.  How do I get the spaghetti squash out Once it is cooked? That is pretty simple,  First you use a fork to get the seeds out by gently scraping out the middle of each half. Then just begin to gently break apart the squash with a fork and you will see all these really cool threads. You continue until you get to the skin.

Butternut squash noodles –  These and beet noodles I do recommend buying already cut just because the butternut squash is a bit to wrestle with when you try to peel it plus you can only noodle the top half of the squash.  Beets stain horrifically.  That being said, they are both a rewarding noodle dish that brings life to your palate and plate.

All veggie noodles cook in minutes – literally 2- 5 minutes tops and then they break down when you saute them – so the 8 – 15 minutes you spend preparing them is worth it.  Just know that you will spend more time preparing the vegetables so if prep is not your forte, avoid veggie noodles or pay for them all ready cut for you.

Cauliflower – Now this one is a hot topic. The reason why I say this is because there is a plethora of recipe substitution out there for this crazy vegetable right now. What can you do with this vegetable you may ask?

Let’s start with cauliflower for mashed potatoes. My recipe is to boil the cauliflower until you kill it and then add butter or said butter substitute, Himalayan pink salt, a little bit of white pepper, a little bit of black pepper and a little bit of granulated garlic. When I use the hand stick blender all of my clients absolutely love it.  You can also put it in a food processor and you may also use a hand masher. I have to say the best results have been with a stick blender and it is easy to clean up.  Whole Foods has organic cauliflower frozen in their veggie section and I get 2 servings of Paleo mashed potatoes for my shepards pie from it.

Riced cauliflower?  Yes!!!!  For Paleo fried rice, chicken and yellow rice, and risotto.  Jambalaya not so much.  How can you make your own riced cauliflower?  With either a hand grater/shredder side or cut into florettes (no stems) and place in your food processor.  Whole Foods does have organic frozen rice cauliflower in their freezer section and it makes 2 servings of Fried rice for me. 

Keto gnocchi not so much.  Unless you have a passion for cheese, keto cauliflower crusts leave something to the imagination in my opinion.  The amount of cheese needed to hold it together kind of kills the purpose of finding practical ways to add more veggies into your daily eating.

 Almond Flour and chia seeds – Now here is a topic that a baker can take these ideas and run with.  I am not a baker. I do not have the discipline nor the patience needed to do baking justice.  I do however, have tips that I can share to make your life happy. In the process of going through the GAPS protocol, one must learn how to prepare pancakes and bread with nut flours.

I came up with not only pancakes and bread, but also waffles, and muffins.  The waffles do take more time to prepare and the GAPS bread does take more energy, but once you get into full GAPS I found a recipe that is out of this world.  It is also when I learned that chia seeds, ground chia seeds are even better, works fabulous as the binding agent for almond flour since it is a gluten free product. Ground chia seeds work the same as eggs becoming gelatinous, holding the batter together more.  When I first fell into natural foods and learned about gluten free first thing I had to learn was how to keep a gluten free product together ’cause using just eggs, milk, and sugar would not do that.  At that point in my career that I learned that xanthan gum was the binding agent since gluten was absent.  Fast forward to 2018 and finding this great bread recipe that is simply 4 tablespoons of almond flour, one teaspoon of chia seed, one egg One half TSP baking powder and a pinch of salt. The recipe does say to work quickly and place directly into the oven.   Here is why – the longer chia seeds sit with a liquid and a solid, the more gelatinous it becomes and weighs down your baking product making it more dense.  And no one wants a dense bread or muffin.   Here is the link to the bread –  http:/www.lowcarbsosimple.com/easy-4-ingredient-keto-mug-bread/

Oven temperature 350 degrees for 20 minutes

Savory pancake recipe1/4C pumpkin or butternut squash, 1 egg, 1/4C almond flour, pinch of Himalayan pink salt.    Mix all together and using coconut oil or ghee,  make silver dollar size pancakes in pancake griddle or large saute pan over medium heat.  Any other size will break!  

If using the entire can of pumpkin, it is the same ratio, I have broken this recipe down into its simplest form.  These pancakes do freeze well so I use 1 can pumpkin, 6 eggs, 1 3/4C almond flour.  I have not put honey or cinnamon in but I am certain that would be fabulous.

The other thing you can do with this recipe is make waffles. All you need to do is to separate the eggs, mix the egg yolks and the pumpkin and the flour together. Whip up your egg whites until they are nice and stiff and then gently fold them into your batter. And all you do is put the coconut oil or ghee in your waffle maker and make you waffles.   I cannot give you a time on the waffles because each waffle maker is different.

Almond flour muffins – Although I did not create this recipe it is a collaboration of 3 recipes I found online.

 1 1/2C  almond flour                                                     1 ½ C cups of shredded carrots,

½ tsp baking soda                                                           3 eggs

1 Tbsp  cinnamon,                                                                     1 tsp vanilla 

1 smashed banana or one individual Cup serving of Unsweetened  Apple sauce.

1. Combine in a bowl – 3 eggs, vanilla, and banana/applesauce with a hand stick blender

2. Almond flour baking soda cinnamon in a bowl

3. Mix wet ingredients into dry ingredients until combined. Add shredded carrots bake at 325 degrees for 22 minutes.

This recipe will not be super sweet there is not any added sugar it is only sweetened with fruit falls into paleo and diabetic protocol. I believe the original recipes I found had honey or Maple syrup in them and I would say to add somewhere from one tablespoon to a quarter Cup if you want these muffins sweeter. You may also add nuts, raisins, nutmeg, allspice, whatever other spices you would like.

Coconut Milk – Can’t figure out a way to substitute heavy cream or milk in recipes?  Full fat coconut milk is your  answer.   Oh No fat!!!!!!!  Seriously, it is a vegetable fat, not an animal fat.  Plus, it is brain food, just like avocado is a plant fat brain food. I have successfully substituted coconut milk for heavy cream in a plethora of recipes with a large amount of success.  Granted it does not reduce the same way heavy cream does, so go easy on it if you are intending to reduce it (doesn’t work), just use a little less with the intention of no reduction time for thickening.  You may also use coconut cream for a richer sauce, that comes in a can like the coconut milk, but again, it will not reduce like cream.

Avocado – Yes, I am going to say for chocolate pudding.  By the time your palate has cleansed a bit from sugar, fake sugars and gross fake or unclean fats, a chocolate pudding will be welcomed.  1 avocado, 2 pitted medjool dates soaked in 3 Tbsp warm water for 5  minutes (the time it takes to cut, pit and put the avocado in the food processor or Magic Bullet), 1 tsp vanilla,  if you want 1 Tbsp raw honey, and 1 Tbsp cacoa.  Blend it up until smooth.  Don’t have dates or don’t like them?  You can make the pudding with just honey – 2 Tbsp vs. 1 Tbsp.  The dates do give it a more puddingish flavor.  I have tried putting in the Bulletproof coffee for more of a smoothie/type coffee but DON’T.  It is awful.  If you have tried it and liked it more power to you, but to me it is the same as saying zoodles make a great spaghetti substitute.

Brazil Nuts – For what?  I found online this great recipe for vegan artichoke dip that used Brazil nuts, sea salt and garlic for Parmesan cheese.  What?????  Here it is –   1 1/4C Brail nuts, 3 cloves garlic, 1/4tsp Himalayan salt.  Grind it up in your spice grinder or mini food processor/Bullet.  That is a large enough quantity to hold extra in the refrigerator. 

Walnuts – Walnuts cost less than pecans when it comes to a gluten free crust.  And it works.

2 ½ C walnuts ground, 1tsp baking soda, 1/4tsp Himalayan salt, 2Tbsp coconut oil.  Bake 350 for 15 minutes.  It worked great with my pumpkin pie.

Green Banana Flour – Okay Adrienne, now you are pushing it.  No seriously, Sarah Bingham – Fast Food Healing- had asked me if I had ever heard of it or used it so of course I had to.  It is gluten free, grain free, GAPS approved.  It comes from green bananas just like it says.  It behaves MUCH BETTER than coconut flour.  It is a soft flour like pastry flour, makes a great roux and can be baked with.  Just use 1/4C less – it says on the package.  And use less baking time, it is very delicate.

KITCHEN TOOLS

In my opinion, I like to keep as practical as I can and do with as little equipment as needed.  Tools I do recommend to have on hand include –

Cutting board         Chef knife        Paring knife        Peeler         Stick hand mixer                         

  Zoodler                               Spice grinder (for grinder chia seeds)

   Food processor (if you intend to make pudding or to make your own riced cauliflower)

Cooking-The Intimidation Factor

For as  much as I love to cook, I was SUPER intimidated by the thought flying solo in a professional kitchen at the beginning of my career.  Yes seriously.

Now to give you some background as to here I believe my inner doubt came from, I was a pronie as a child.  Professional pronie complete with falling up stairs and getting stuck between the wall and the top of the bunk bed when I did fall off. And let us remember the time I was sitting in the house watching tv on my new beach chair because it was raining outside, and I fell off that also. And the time I was helping my Mom make her fabulous cheesecake in the b lender and  turned it on before the lid was on it.  That truly got me banned from the kitchen for an exceptionally long time. So, I think most of my inner self confidence had to do with my overachievement in the accident-prone part of the world.

My question to you-Does cooking intimidate you? Are you afraid that your food will not turn out as good as that picture of the recipe you found? Do you think snazzy knife skills are the only way to be a good cook? Do you think that if you do not have the exact knife to do that exact cutting job you see in the instructions; your food will taste like cat poo? Does the mere thought of cooking turn your knees to applesauce?

Let’s begin with differentiating between being intimidated by cooking and NOT enjoying cooking.  One of my all-time favorite lines that I say is “If everyone loved to cook, we would not have stoves, ovens, furniture, cars, etc.”. God gave us all our skill sets to make the world go ‘round. It is okay to not enjoy cooking or simply loathe the thought of being in a kitchen doing anything other than eating food. Intimidation is when you can think up literally ANY reason why you are cooking is a bad idea for anyone eating the food you prepare including yourself.

I would like to destroy cooking imaginary rules for you today and maybe make cooking a little more enjoyable.  That is what I do when you have cooking lessons with me.  I meet you where you are at in your food journey and find ways to make cooking more enjoyable.

Rule Number 1 You need a complete knife set in order t cook.  To me, as long as you have a chef knife to your comfort zone (so many sizes and handle shapes and weights), a paring knife (same as the chef knife),  and maybe a filet knife if you cook a lot of chicken and meat, you can prep ANYTHING.  It is truly about having these knives that are comfortable in your hand that makes knife work easy, not the brand of knife.  Now, it does need to be sharp or you will be cutting your fingers instead of your veggies and meat, that is true. So, make sure you have a place to get your knives sharpened or have an at home knife sharpener you like.

Rule Number 2 You must follow every step in a recipe. Oh My Gosh.  Sometimes I wonder where these people come up with recipes. Now I get it that when you do not know how to cook, it does help to be told wash your veggies, cut your veggies, cook your veggies.  And that knowing your oil needs to be hot before adding your food makes it cook properly.  But sometimes, there are multiple unnecessary steps that turn me off from recipes. I will have clients send me recipes they want to me to make, and after I read them, I think “No wonder they want me to cook this for them, I would pay someone also!”  Some also LOVE labor intensive recipes (that is the way some meals MUST  be prepared), it just is not for me.  My husband loves spending all day in the kitchen to make a meal that is annihilated in 10 minutes by our boys.  I digress.  It was my Chef Ed that told me all you have to do is throw all the ingredients in a pot  and your soup will taste fine.  And it does. Does it taste better/is better for you when you make your own veggie or meat stock? Yes. But seriously, you can literally toss a soup together  in minutes and let it cook until it is done.

Rule Number 3 Always use only the ingredients in the recipe. One of my happiest moments happen when I am scheduled to do a lunch and learn, or a TV spot and the produce is out of stock that I am demo-ing. And I must then find a substitute for that ingredient.  You can literally find multiple suggestions online for food/seasoning substitutes for almost everything out there if you cannot think of a substitute on your own.  For example, what happens when you do not have peanut butter in the house, and you are making a peanut sauce? Use almond or cashew or whatever nut butter you do have.  What if I am allergic to rosemary? Use thyme or oregano.  Or if you want sweet use basil.  Oregano is more savory.   Want to make an Asian flair? Sauté your onions and ginger together  Don’ like the look or onion or ginger? Use powdered. I do that for plenty of my clients that like the flavor but do not want to see these foods.

These are a few of my tips.  If you have any questions, please leave them for me to answer or ask my o my FB Page The Food Whisperer.

Love yourself.  Love your food.

Healthy Foods Vs. Fake Foods

I am about to open a Pandora’s Box on Food. And I would love to hear opinions.  I am being honest when I say that I want to learn or least would like to consider myself open to hearing opinions differing from my own.  Conversation, Discernment, Logic.

Here we go-when I first dove into health food preparation 20+ years ago it was just that.  Headfirst, had no idea what I was getting into other than preparing “Health Food”. Little did I know what that world entailed.  Not just vegetarian and vegan foods,  but also the world of food allergies (I like antagonists better, we will do a bit on that for another day), and food substitutes. It blew me AWAY the common food allergens – wheat, dairy, nuts, gluten, egg, and eventually soy; and the health issues they create.

But what truly got me 20+ years agon and now with the meat substitute revival is just that-the FAKE meat products that continue to be all the craze. Before you get offended, hear me out.

We critique the fast-food industry for their “on the go’ over simplicity f food that they have made available for us.  How terrible and processed and fatty and preserved this  food is. Now look at the fake meats, chicken, hot dogs, sausages, cheeses, and frozen desserts.  Read their ingredients.  Can you pronounce their ingredients any easier than other processed foods on the shelf, refrigerator section or freezer?  People are worried about putting animal fat in their bodies for fear of heart attacks yet if you remember, processed fats/created fats/hydrogenated fats are what is killing us. The only problem with animal fats is when it is conventional fats because that is where all the toxins hang out.  I guarantee you our grand[rents or great grandparents now ( I forget we are inn a new century), did not have nearly the heart disease issues and diabetes that we have now.  And they were eating animal product and baked goods.  BUT THEY WERE UNREFINED, as far as the flours and grains go.  And the animal product, the animals were eating of the earth and not being force fed what we think makes them taste better. My heart and stomach churned watching Andrew Zimmerman think it was so cool how they are leaving a whole cows’ bodies open to disease by having a whole directly to their stomach to see how their stomachs are digesting different foods to make their cheeses tase better. Now that is something, I can get on the animal cruelty bandwagon about.  But it is science.  REALLY?

Back  to food substitutes.  20+ years ago I nearly fell down when my assistant Judy began to educate me on what vegans wanted to be eating/what we were to be preparing for our hot tables for lunch and dinner selections at the store I worked at.  Fake chicken nuggets, fake mac and cheese, fake chicken salad, tofu egg salad, fake beef (seitan) stir fry and once Thanksgiving came around, we must make sure we stocked Tofurkeys. My first question after being educated on what  vegans will and will not consume, was “Why, if vegans are against eating animal product do, they insist on having meat substitutes? Doesn’t that perpetuate what they’re protesting against?” I have been completely honest with my vegan friends and colleagues over the years and shared these questions with them as well.  Some share their beliefs and answer my questions, some will no longer work with me. I am okay with that because I love to make plant-based foods.  I honor people’s food choices and respect the method of food prep (I WILL NOT cook veggies in a meat pan for example or use the same cutting boards, the same way I do for food allergies-everything is separate).  And I am forever grateful for both Judy and my mentor Pam Brown for educating me on proper vegan cooking.

So how can fake/processed meat and cheese be healthier for you than the real product? Why would you rationalize that it is better for you when it is processed versus eating animal product? Why would you put yourself through the torture of convincing yourself that you are eating something that is obviously fake? Why do you think that once it is not made from animal product that it is healthier for you and therefore can eat more of it? Fake cheeses made with fats, that are more refined and/or made with processed nuts that still have fats the SAME WAY CHEESE DOES.  So, you are still only supposed to have that one or however many ounces portion size.  The same on the fake meats. Portion size is the same as animal product. AND it processed. 

Personally, I will take the gamble on organic meat and dairy or goat or sheep cheese vs. the fake stuff.  Yes, I will continue to find whole food ingredient substitutes for my food allergy and vegan friends, family and clients who need to avoid certain foods.  That is why I do what I do.  To find HEALTHY alternatives for those who are digestively challenged.

Whole Foods.

Healthy Foods.

Real Foods.

Pam Brown and her husband Moses were vegans who taught me s much during my first year in Health Foods. Pam taught me that for a vegan (pretty much for everyone), the importance of having dark leafy green veggies EVERY DAY for their nutrient density that vegan will miss, as well as beans.  They did not eat fake/created foods.  They were not “American vegans” who live on processed vegan foods,  although they were Americans. Pam made all her own desserts for them to nosh on. She is the perrons who told me that vegans for the most part are as sick if not sicker than meat eaters because of all the processed foods they were/eating.  “You cannot eat potato chips and French fried and profess you are a healthy vegan.”

Bottom line in my opinion,  fake meat and cheese is just as unhealthy for you are processed omnivore foods.  You choose to be vegetarian or vegan, I am  all  for it.  Please eat properly and educate yourself on the amazing benefits these lifestyles have for you when eating this way.

To Eat And What To Eat Part Deux

Knowing food has everything to do with brain health (our gut is our second-or first brain if you did not already know this), I am sorting through what I need to be eating (and avoid eating for now) for optimal brain function.

I had a hiccup in my life a couple weeks ago and as a Traumatic Brain Injury Advocate, I love to share all things I learn about it and what can be done to perpetuate ongoing healing. 

In my Theory-since our bodies are constantly renewing/regenerating cells, then it stands to hold that if we provide the proper nutrients for it, then the cells being created will be healthy, ergo digestion/healthy gut healthy body/brain.

Now I know this can go in so many different directions because we no longer live in the Garden of Eden without stress and dis-ease. A friend I used to work with said one day while we were prepping food-“You eat healthy and you die. You smoke cigarettes and you die. You jog 5 miles a day and you die.  You eat sugar and you die.”  You get the drift.  My point is, as I have said multiple times Do you want to die healthy or live sick?

The real turning point in my life was my Mother’s death.  She died after a very harsh, painful, battle with an unknown cause.  All the Western/allopathic medicine could not find a reason.  At the end it was cardiac arrest-probably from the nonstop, ‘exquisite’ pain (yes, that is exactly what they labeled it) she was under.  And a mass that they had somehow missed in her abdomen. Point here is-she was old school Sicilian, did not believe in exercise for health, smoked a pack a day, Loved coffee with her sugar and heavy cream, and desserts.  Now, the heavy cream part does not bother me because that is WHOLE MILK at it is finest.  But conventional dairy is loaded with toxins and the toxins sit in the fat.  Again, I digress, today’s foods, the last 50 years and what is coming, is not benefitting us on a conventional level of groceries available/promoted to us.

And the same with eating protocols.  The  way things are promoted these days, you would think these protocols are one size fits all. And they are not. Including my book, The Real Language Of Food Constructive Recipes For A Healthier You. I wrote it with the intent of wanting to educate, encourage, and empower people to make their own decisions on what is right for their own health. They are all simple side dishes intended to be paired with each other and with protein of choice. Yet, there are multiple food items that may be contradictory to MANY  of the protocols in existence.

Which brings me to my Part Deux. Gundry and Perimutter are all about grain brain and inflammatory foods.  Which to avoid, how to possibly eat something that you like and is on the No List.  And then you have the side that says that fermented foods and bone broth are bad for you.  And both are correct for SOME PEOPLE out there. And some people can have a sampling of all the foods on both lists. It truly depends on your constitutional make up at that particular point in time.

And it also depends on your emotional/traumatic baggage and how well you genuinely WANT TO BE. I want to health my brain rattling that I had happen.  I know I need to stay away from grains and sugar and dairy and alcohol and starchy carbs to accelerate healing, decrease/eliminate inflammation, stay positive in order to create new happy pathways vs. depressive/anxiety pathways.

So, what am I craving right now?  Rice, noodles, Asian dumplings, sourdough bread, pastries, cakes, grilled cheese. Everything that NUMBS MY BRAIN. Gluten, sugar,  and dairy specifically act as opioids in the brain. That is why they are SO TOXIC  for those with autism, adhd, dementia, Alzheimer’s, all brain issues. These substances act as numbing agents which is great because it makes you tune out the noise and anxiety, BUT it also stops you from thinking clearly and succinctly to learn from the problems at hand and how to cope with situations, aka heal, grow, learn.

While right now I am supposed to following the Blood Type A eating that has me consuming small amounts of gluten free grains and beans and restricts my consumption of animal proteins, I need some of that for repair purposes. And I need to continue to avoid all grains and beans for right now because my body is saying a big loud NO! I am sticking to copious amounts of veggies, and about 8 oz protein a day and right now my body likes it. How do I know? My poop tells me so. You can find to all sorts of info about digestion and poop.  Lorie Roman/Foodscript Food Sensitivity Awareness posted info a couple weeks ago on her Insta.

Summary-You will get as far as you WANT to with your health with what you are eating.  Yes, there are all sorts of other things to take into consideration. Yet instead of ‘You are what you eat’, maybe it is “You are what you are eat, AND HOW YOU FEEL WHEN YOU ARE EATING”.

Til next time. MANGIA!

To Eat And What To Eat, That Is The Question

Grain free, gluten free, whole grain, Paleo, Keto, lectin free, fermented, non-fermented, low sodium, plant based, dairy free, nut free, allergen free. What am I supposed to eat to keep me healthy???!!!

I know, right? There is information overload and so much contradictory information out there.  For me, I cannot do Keto eating. As fabulous, life giving, weight balancing as it is, my body does not metabolize fats and proteins well and so I cannot live a keto lifestyle.  I also cannot do 100% plant based because me, beans and especially grains (whole, soaked, or gluten free) are  not besties-most beans make me Gas Bomb Betty and grains for the most part burn in my stomach and/or get super bloated. Dairy and I have an off and on relationship, so I only consume small amounts of organic butter or cream (again bloating and gas).

I also know people thriving on Keto, 100% plant based, Paleo, etc. And then there seems to be a turning point where something changes in their body and they have a health issue and need to adjust.  Or not.  They do not put 2+2 together and believe they need to change their eating and maybe continue with their lifestyles and add on whatever will fix that specific issue.

Plus you do need to take into consideration if you have been eating a vegan/100% plant based lifestyle for a prolonged period of time, your body is no longer making the digestive enzymes needed to digest animal product and you can get sick from jumping feet first into animal protein again.  So, start with fish or eggs and then work your way up the food channel.

What about fermented foods? Some are super beneficial but if you have certain autoimmune issues, they may be contradictory.  Same with bone broth.  While super nourishing and healing, some people get major migraines and nausea from it.  That is due to toxicity in the body all ready as well as other factors.

Is there a one size fits all for eating healthy?  No.  That is why I published my Real Language Of Food Constructive Recipes For A Healthier You.  It is a baby step recipe book for those wanting to dabble in food antagonists and what works in your body.  It is an elimination protocol that gives you multiple recipes and options.  I went under the notion that everyone knows how to cook a protein and that finding the veggie dishes to go with is what is the difficult part.  You can find it on Amazon and on my website.

My point is, read, educate yourself and experiment to see what works for you.  And when your body’s season shifts and what had been working for you no longer does, know that you will play the elimination game again and still find tasty ways to eat. And I am always here to help you find recipes and options for you.

Healthy Care or Sick Care

I have been encountering this question more and more lately in my head. 

Who likes to be sick?

Who likes to be healthy?

And yet EVERY DAY, people choose to stay sick in their chronic dis-eases – diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, obesity, thyroid issues, heart disease, glandular issues, hormone issues, depression/anxiety disorders, digestive issues (GERD, reflux, gastritis, inflammatory bowel disease, etc.).

Don’t get me wrong, THESE ARE ALL VERY REAL HEALTH ISSUES.  There ARE NOT incurable illnesses. These ARE NOT dis-eases that must happen as we get older. Over the past 18+ years of my life I have learned that eating and lifestyle choices have EVERYTHING TO DO with beating the curve.

Yes, this does take educating yourself and finding knowledgeable practitioners that will not scam you out of every last cent. It also takes discipline, accountability, a strong support system, and work  on your end.

And I find people every week who actively choose to stay sick.  It empowers them to have a reason why they cannot start/finish a project, why they are so tired, why they cannot exercise, why they cannot function at a higher level, why x,y,z- you put in the reason. 

Again, I have my own issues-I am prone to heart disease, strokes, depression, obesity, and diabetes.  My Mother had her first heart attack (stress related) when she was 44.  Doctor told her is she wanted to watch her children grow up she had to stop practicing law.  She then proceeded to have high cholesterol for the rest of her life (triglycerides were perfect though), and began her strokes at 63.  My 2 other aunts also had a history of strokes and heart issues before they died.  I take after my Mom’s side and so need to watch my heart health (there is something called the MTHFR gene that gives you this predisposition, and it can be deactivated).

So here I am, 52 and going in a still healthy direction,  Zero prescriptions to date, weight within healthy norms, blood work-HDL a little low but LDL good and sugar and triglycerides stellar. I exercise regularly, modify my eating lifestyle to whatever season my body responds to, and use various modalities for body/mind/spiritual balance.

I did have a very dark time in my life with postpartum depression for a solid year and a half, complete with prescription meds and therapy until I read an article about fish oils and manic-depressive disorder.  When I experimented with that, my black hole went away with a month. I am quite familiar with depression and anxiety (another part of the MTHFR gene), and am also an advocate for proper nutrition and therapy to work THROUGH IT.

So, why do you want to stay in sick care vs. healthy care? What is serving you by staying in sick care?

After watching my Mother live a slow, painful death, I chose at that moment that I wanted to avoid having my children go through that pain. 

Who enjoys watching their once vibrant,  dynamic, animated, buzzing, robust parent/friend/loved one vanish painfully in front of their eyes? 

Who has had this happen and feel completely helpless when you may have had answers that would have helped them, but they refused?

Now do you want your loved ones to experience that exact same pain and heartache?  Seriously, think about it.  If you could avoid giving others the same pain and heartache you experienced, what better gift is there to give?

Do you want to live sick or die healthy? 

Yes, we are all going to die one day.  Expected or unexpected it is going to happen.  And yes, there are so many variables that are out there regardless of what we choose to do or not do.

At the end of the day, at the end of my days, I want to be able to say I did my best with what I given.

The Gift of Life.  Your life is a gift to others.  YOU are a GIFT to others.  Be that your entire life.

If you would like to source me for cooking lessons or get my books, check out my site, follow me on Instagram, Facebook, or LinkedIn.

While On The Topic Of Eating Healthy

Why the name “The Food Whisperer”?  This was given to me years ago when I was in the health food store cafes by one of my customers.  They said eating my food had gotten them back in touch with their body’s nutritional needs. So my question for you today is what is your body saying to you on a food level (how hungry are you and how often), on a mood energy level (too high, too low), on an inflammation level (limitation of movement, aches and pains aka arthritis), on a mental clarity level (brain fog, forgetfulness), on a fatigue level, on a puffiness/bloated level, on a bowel elimination level.

How many different weight solutions do you see on your social media sources each day? How many quick fixes have you tried and how many exercise routines have been successful?  How many inflammatory programs do you see?  Anti-aging?  Latest, Greatest, Cure All Eating protocol?

I do have all these popping up because I need to follow trends for my current and future clients who may request a new protocol.  And so, I pick through what I read and compare to what I have learned over the past 23 years in the health food world and a total of 36 years as a former hypoglycemic.  That is where my journey of health and food connection began.

Here I am today, 52; in perimenopause; progesterone is super low; bio identical, allergen free progesterone does not know where to go in my body; weight is beginning to creep up on me, good cholesterol is a little low, bad cholesterol is a little high, triglycerides are spectacular, sugar is beautiful, liver looks good.   Hmmmmm. I have been following a Paleo driven, intermittent fasting protocol for the past 1 ½-2 years.  My intermittent fasting is eating from 8 am to 4-5 pm, one day fasting with one 600 calorie meal.  On weekends I may eat later if I like, and that is when I will drink my preservative free, no added sulfite wine. I work out as follows 2-3 days weights 20-25 minutes, 2-3 days Pilates, calisthenics, or speed walking (25 minutes), 2 days stretching only. I do a cleanse 2 or 3 times a year. Colonics at season change. Regular chiropractic adjustments, throw in some craniosacral therapy and monthly/bi-weekly MLD.

Looks rather good right?  But when nothing changes for the good (weight, blood work, and a fatty deposit on my upper arm), something has to give somewhere.  That is where I was tweaking with the intermittent fasting ( how long, what works), shifting to lesser time exercising – reduce adrenal fatigue, etc.  A client of mine recently asked if I were familiar with Eat Right For Your Blood Type and could I prepare meals for them in that way.  Of course! I remember when the protocol first came out and having to prepare dishes for the café, I worked in.  So, I dusted off my Live Right book and delved into things.  Now, 20 years ago I played around with eating for Type A for myself and found it maintained my weight post babies.  It did not make sense to me since I am Sicilian, and I should be eating pasta sauce, olives, peppers, eggplant, dairy cheese, and meat.  But it worked.  And then you let things go and move on with life when everything is going okay.  Until it is not.

I decided almost two weeks ago to go back to the Blood Type basics for A’s.  What has happened?  Although my weight has not shifted, my puffiness on my waist has.  And the fatty deposit I have had for the past 3+ years has reduced dramatically.  I am going to tighten the Live Right protocol strings on myself a little more and see what else is going to happen next.  I will probably be checking my blood (cholesterol) again soon. 

My take is this, like I said before, our bodies are as shifting as the tides or the wind.  What works for others may not work for you.  Or what worked for you for the past 3 years may have stopped a long time ago and you decided to ignore it believing that this is still what is best for you.  But when the results do not change, something else has to.  Food, exercise, and how open you are to changing things you DO HAVE CONTROL OVER.  It is up to you to sit and wait for that next appointment, until you have more energy, until a practitioner gives you an answer you want to hear, until work stops being so stressful, until the family issue is resolved, until a loved one’s health crisis is over, I can go on and on, I hope you get the picture. 

Make excuses so you do not have to be responsible for your health  and food and exercise and mind set choices OR take 15 minutes here and there every day to research and dig and find what eating, and exercise, and mind set therapy will EMPOWER YOU on your next healthier you step in your journey. Peace and Love Always.  Although I know this one, I wrote is to stir you up a little, LOL.

What Does Healthy Eating Mean?

Let us be frank-in today’s world of body shaming, embracing me for who I am vs. how I look, optimal body, mind, soul health, what does it mean to “eat healthy”?  I think I have somewhat of a handle on this since I am ‘fat’ person living in a nonfat body (at present time, it seems things are shifting as I am approaching menopause).

A little back story on me for those new to The Food Whisperer and my own health journey.  I am born of good 100% Sicilian genes (at least until I decide to get the whole gene test to see where else I came from).  Whole, 100% fat genes.  I was obese as a child up until 14.  My sister and I were both ‘bullied’ mercilessly both verbally and physically by our peers.  Our parents did their best to empower us and teach us good people from those wishing hurt and harm and those that are insecure and therefore will hurt others.  They reinforced our self-confidence the best they knew how with words of love and confirmation and yes Food.  Words of comfort, food for comfort.  But it was good/healthy food-homemade pasta and sauce: nourishing leftovers from meals-meat and veggies; sandwiches with Italian meats, cheeses, and veggies.  But yes, still food.  How else does one show love and affection when their babies are hurting than with hugs, kisses, and food?  Fast forward to high school, Jane Fonda workout album, roller skating, hours long bike rides with my bestie after my homework was done and all the excess weight disappeared.  Along with good (?) eating habits when you have the high school cafeteria serving French fries and hot fudge sundaes AND  ice cream sandwiches.  Yep, even though my parents had a deli, I would eat at school quite a bit.  Then I passed out in chorus one day and after a trip to the doctor found out I had become hypoglycemic.

Lesson Number One that began my food/health journey.  Eat small meals, 5-6 times a day to keep my blood sugars level, zero added sugar, complex carbs, and high protein.  And guess what? No more maniacal mood swings, fatigue, or weight fluctuations! 

Then in my late twenties/early thirties I was diagnosed with gallstones.  Maybe had something to do with my martinis and chicken wings. Or my love for foie gras nibbles.  Or that my hormones were fluctuating after having children.  All that combined, and a genetic predisposition have both my sister and I in a state of consciousness with our gallbladders.  We have opted to keep our gallbladders and instead do gallbladder flushes a few times a year.  Also be conscious of what we eat.

It was also in my thirties that I learned more about food and health as I had entered the ‘health food’ industry at 30.  Hearing about food allergies piqued my interest and a yearning to feed those who thought they had food limitations grew into my passion for making food that is good for you AND tastes good.

So, what have I learned? 

That our bodies are as ever changing as the weather or the tides. 

What may work for one hundred bodies may not work for yours. 

That truly as the Bible says do not compare yourself to anyone else.

Healthy eating may be as simple as avoiding all refined and processed foods for some and for others it means avoiding all grains, beans, alcohol, smoking, potatoes, night shades and acidic foods.

What, When, Where, How and Why you eat has EVERYTHING  to do with healthy eating. You do have to be conscious about what you are putting into your mouth.

You are TOTALLY lying to yourself when you say you are completely happy with your self-image while on multiple prescriptions and avoiding your own truths.  I can say  this because I have been there.  Until you have someone you can talk to that will make you dig into your issues AND help you resolve them, prescriptions will mask the problems in your life.  There is in imbalance in your body AS WELL AS IN YOUR MIND (aka gut/brain health), that is creating the anxiety and depression you are experiencing.  It will only be addressed when you NOURISH  your GUT  and your BRAIN.

Healthy Eating.  It is a lifelong journey that I am happily on and shifting as my body is going into a new phase of shedding the old and birthing a new me, for real.

Where are you at in your journey?  Are you ready to take that “Indian Jones Leap of Faith” (you have to watch the near end of Indiana Jones and The Last Crusade to see what I am talking about) as I call it, and see what that next healthy step is for you?

Food for Health, Savor the Flavor of Health, Healthy Gut Healthy Body.  Call it what you will.  I have two recipe books now that you can find on Holisticcheftampa.com.  I also offer virtual cooking lessons.  I want to empower you on your food journey.

I am The Food Whisperer getting food and your body to communicate.

%d bloggers like this: