Energy!

I am excited again! I have been missing part of me. I didn’t really notice it because life didn’t slow down but things had changed, a lot of it for the better, but also there was just something missing. We moved over a year ago and I was able to focus completely on my three children and my husband, which has been amazing; I wouldn’t trade that for the world. I am enjoying teaching and tutoring again which is also something that I love doing but there was a piece missing.

This blog was missing! My love and passion for writing about things that I am learning to be healthier was not happening. It took a close friend mentioning a supplement that she was trying to get me back on here! I actually didn’t even look at it the first couple of times she mentioned it to me and I finally watched a video. I was blown away by the science behind these products. I spent several weeks sneaking time to watch Dr. Joe McCord’s presentations on how his products work and just taking it all in. At this point in prior discoveries I would have called someone wanting to share this information and just threw up my excitement all over them(It is never pretty). This time, I totally kept it to myself but I was excited! I couldn’t wait to try the products and I was coming up with lists of people that could be helped after learning about these new breakthrough studies.

Fast-forward to the present and I have ordered the products, got them last Friday and have been taking them since Saturday morning. I have energy! I have patience(ok I have a lot more than I did last week!)!! I am not craving coffee! This feels amazing and I have that spark back that I was missing. So this is me also saying, welcome back to my blog! I am posting again!!

Manage allergies naturally!

I have mentioned my allergies in many of my blog posts but I don’t think anyone except for people who have known me for a long time realize how bad my reactions were. When I was in first grade I was sent home from school because I could not see my work through my itchy, watery eyes. My Mom knew it was time to find a solution so she took me to our doctor. My pediatrician’s office happened to have an allergist on staff and I immediately began testing to begin allergy shots. I was taking tons of allergy medicines to try to regulate my allergies and going to the doctor’s office once a week for shots in both arms. The medicines made me hyper and I remember being miserable. I also have severe asthma triggered by my allergies and my Mom did everything she possibly could to help me. Upon the doctor’s orders we kept the windows and doors closed on our house and cars at all times to help keep the pollen out of the house and vacuum the carpets and clean the sheets regularly to keep the dust mite reactions down. I used a nebulizer(breathing machine like they use at the hospital) that I used three times a day to help me breathe comfortably. I loved being outside and getting dirty though! I played lots of sports through school and was in the band. I truly think those activities helped me with my allergies and lung capacity. I loved being active and playing outside. I can’t imagine who I would be today if I had been afraid of my disease and tried to live too much in a bubble.

I was teaching music after college and still suffering from asthma and allergies. When I got pregnant with my oldest son I was trying to use as little medication as possible to control my symptoms because they were not necessarily in the safe category for my unborn child. I did not start learning about natural supplements to help with the allergy symptoms until after my son was born and I was learning from my Shaklee friends. I started using Alfalfa which was an amazing discovery! Shaklee came out with a product called Nutriferon very soon after I started using their supplements and I was amazed at how this product changed my life. A lightbulb began to go off for me. If I was able to control my allergies better than ever in my 27 years of suffering with these symptoms, why did I think that drugs were the only solution? To date, I do not know of a way to stop an asthma attack without Albuterol HOWEVER, I have not personally had an asthma attack in several years.

Update: I no longer use Nutriferon or Albuterol. After detoxing my body from toxins I have not experienced an asthma attack or a need for allergy interventions. The only way to truly know your body is by doing food eliminations for at least 21 days(30 to 60 is preferred) and then reintroduce that food to check for reactions.

Just like most people, I learn about something and it takes me awhile before I am prepared to try it out. It is easier to try something out if you just need to take a pill and not change your lifestyle. I absolutely get that. It is how we have been trained to think about things. There is a medicine to help everything. Just pop a pill and go on your way. Please understand that I personally believe in seeing a doctor routinely and I absolutely do not think that medicine is all bad. I am referring to the mentality of our society. The more I learn, the more I know that God has given us everything we need in nature and I pray for the scientist to use all that God gave us to help people.

Easy Flaxseed Wrap (Gluten-Free)

Check out these flaxseed wraps! I love this! Thank you Andrea Drugay!

andrea drugay

Easy Flaxseed Wrap

To see all recipes, scroll to the top and click on Recipes or just click here!

Last week, I posted my recipe for Collard Wraps, a delicious and healthy portable lunch. But I have to admit ~ as much as I LOVE my greens (and I really do), sometimes I want something… fluffier. Bread-ier. More “traditional.” Carb-ish.

We’ve been staying away from wheat and flour around here, for various reasons, and I certainly feel excellent as a result. However! I do occasionally miss a sandwich or burrito.

Well, to my excitement, I discovered this recipe for super-easy wraps made with flaxseed meal, that are the perfect stand-in for a tortilla, pita, or bread. The recipe came from the book Wheat Belly (read my Goodreads review), a very interesting new title about the development of modern wheat and why it causes…

View original post 225 more words

Lose weight by balancing hormones!

I have been reading Dr. Alan Christianson’s new book, “The Adrenal Reset Diet”. It is so great! I am really learning a lot about how the body works and that we really can have control of how our body works through our food! This is such great news! Over the last few years of reading countless books about health and nutrition(for fun! lol) I have gotten a pretty clear picture of how the body works and responds to the way we live. I am not a doctor but I get that we have to listen to our body and do our best to treat our body like a temple and try to eat the best we can whenever possible.

Some of the topics discussed in the book include toxins in our environment which is so important to me. People don’t even realize how sick they are making themselves and their families by relying on chemicals! I have been using chemical-free cleaners for a little more than 6 years now, and I cannot believe the amount of money I am saving! When I talk with people about making the switch they are so stuck on the smell of their chemicals. I cannot begin to understand this(ok I am done now….no judgement…it is truly some form of addiction). Also very important and mentioned in his book about plastics, BPA exposure and light pollution.

He also discusses stress from the pressures of life. We all feel this daily! We are constantly plugged into our technology, driving in traffic and of course, the pressures of work and family life. Dr. Christianson talks about meditation and breathing as well as other techniques to help you de-stress.

NOW on to the most important topic of the book!! FOOD. Around the same time that our world adopted the idea of cleaning with chemicals, there were chemicals being developed to “help” our food grow(debatable now). These products are now a large part of what a growing part of our society is now fighting daily by purchasing non-GMO and organic produce and responsibly grown animal products. There is a dirty dozen list that is a great place to start. It is easy to feel overwhelmed by a lot of changes at once. Study the products you are shopping for and little by little you will get a good idea of what is available in your area and in your price range.

More specifically in food, Dr. Christianson has discovered that the time of day that you eat certain TYPES of foods will balance your hormones. This was such an “ah-ha” moment for me! Basically, through a studying of a grouping of patients, he tested their hormones throughout the day and measured their levels. He discovered the morning meal should be consumed within an hour of waking up and it should be a good quality source of protein and fiber(serving of fat and 1 serving of carbs is also included). Avoid sugar and carbs! Lunch should be a quality source of protein, fat, and 2 servings of carbs; Dinner a serving of protein, fat and 3 carbs. So the most carbs at dinner! And he goes on to explain in great detail but you hopefully get the idea.

I love learning new things 🙂 Check out the book for yourself!

Hormones can be managed naturally!

There are so many things that I learn about and add them into my daily routine and then I forget that everyone else doesn’t already know about them too so I wanted to share this amazing concept 🙂

Seed cycling! The idea is that RAW seeds, freshly ground, have so many amazing health benefits and if you use certain seeds at different times of your cycle, it will help to regulate your hormone levels.

The website that I learned about all of this from is http://www.dr-kristy.com/balancing-hormones-with-seed-clycling/

My daily routine includes a smoothie for either breakfast or lunch. I use a magic bullet for my smoothies. The smallest container that comes with it and the flat blade is our seed grinder. This keeps things simple for us. The regular blade is then washed and left out to dry so it is always ready to go when we are. My frozen berries are perfect for not adding sugars. These are approved for low FODMAP diet as well as almost every other book I have read on the subject of good things to not sabotage your day. You want to avoid sending your blood sugar levels on a rollercoaster so try to avoid banana, mango, pineapple, grapes and most other fruits when using

 a smoothie as a meal. If you want a sweet treat, you could add those fruits but be aware that they must be eaten in moderation. 

Also in this picture is whole flax seeds, whole raw pumpkin seeds, frozen strawberries, frozen blueberries, unsweetened coconut milk and my Shaklee Vitalizing protein. This is part of days 1-14. My seeds will change to sesame seeds and sunflower seeds for days 15-28.

I hope this information helps give you relief from your hormonal symptoms. It sure has helped me!

Lettuce wraps

This is an obvious one but it has been such a huge help for myself and many other people who are trying to avoid eating wheat.

Lettuce is one of the dirty dozen foods so make sure you use Organic lettuce!

  • Bib, Romaine, Iceberg Lettuce are all good for this 🙂
  • You can use anything from chicken salad to chunks of meat or slices of lunch meat. Whatever is on sale that week!
  • Mustard
  • Sharp cheddar cheese(the harder the better) Less lactose will help you avoid a reaction

Lay the lettuce out and overlap several pieces then lay the cheese or meat out, add mustard or another seasoning then roll up and eat!

“bowtie” pasta

UPDATE! Aldi’s has pasta now too! Make sure you buy a brown rice and quinoa pasta. It is delicious and nutritious!

My kids LOVE this meal. They devour it! Our version of this recipe no longer can be “bowtie pasta” because they don’t make a gluten free “bowtie”….

  • gluten free pasta- TJ’s spiral pasta works well
  • 1 lb. ground sausage. We use Bowman and Landes turkey sausage
  • organic frozen chopped spinach
  • 4 Tbsp butter
  • parmesan cheese

Brown and crumble the sausage in a pan. While that is cooking start a large pot of boiling water to cook pasta. Be sure to not overcook the pasta! Put the spinach in the microwave to heat up then drain the liquid off in colander. Add the spinach to the cooked sausage. Drain the pasta in the colander and add the butter to the hot pan then add the drained pasta. Then add the spinach and sausage. Serve with parmesan cheese grated over the top.

Shopping List Ideas

Now what!? Let’s eat!! Here are some must-have foods that I make sure to always have on hand. I will update this list as I think of things but NOTICE the only “gluten free” foods that I purchase are just a substitute to rice and quinoa products. We love our pasta noodles so definitely check out Trader Joe’s and Aldi’s for those! NOTE: this is a list for those who are looking to eliminate the 7 common food intolerances.

  • coconut oil
  • quinoa
  • organic black beans, navy beans, kidney beans for recipes
  • organic tomato sauce(read the labels! look for ones with no soybean oil)
  • roaster chicken(throw it in the oven in my dutch oven with salt, pepper and butter on 375 F, pick the chicken and then add water for broth) We can get two to three meals from this
  •  quinoa/rice pasta(spirals) from Aldi’s or Trader Joe’s- I have recently found other good pastas in grocery stores but these are still my go-to pastas
  • quinoa
  • organic lettuce-romaine for salads, iceburg for lettuce wraps
  • organic bell peppers
  • organic cucumbers
  • organic carrots
  • cashews for snacking and recipes
  • almond and/or cashew butter for recipes
  • oats! Lots and lots of oats. If you start out gluten free, make sure that you use gluten free oats to make sure you are getting all gluten out of your system. Later on if you find that you are able to tolerate them, you won’t have to be so selective if you need to watch your budget.
  • local ground turkey and ground turkey sausage in freezer section
  • organic spinach frozen to add to recipes
  • Find a local farm for meats. We have been getting our chicken and beef locally. Otherwise get Laura’s ground beef and other cuts depending on the price.
  • onions for recipes
  • protein for smoothies- look for soy free! We carry a yummy protein powder 🙂
  • frozen organic berries for smoothies
  • dates to use in snack bars

What NOT to eat!

Gluten

Despite what the food companies want you to believe, being gluten free is not a fad and it is NOT UNhealthy. Quite the opposite. You are NOT eliminating all carbohydrates from your system, you are just eliminating one particular food. Now, if we just stopped eating bread that will not change your exposure to wheat. The first thing you need to do is start reading labels. DO NOT WORRY ABOUT FAT AND CALORIES! Read the INGREDIENTS! Start to learn what is in your foods. The more you can eat whole foods, the better! Wheat has been added to everything from ice cream to soups as a filler or thickener and very cheaply. People with Celiac disease will even notice the wheat added to makeup and shampoo! It is everywhere because it is so cheap to use and it does the job.

Soy products

This one is tricky because soy is not a bad thing if you get it from a good source. This is another subject that has mixed opinions. Soy has been genetically modified and if you watch some of the documentaries, you will hear about farmers who have been forced into using these genetically modified crops and neighboring crops being exposed to the patented seed and then forced into signing a contract to also grow the genetically modified soybeans.

My point is, if you use a quality soybean, it will not cause you to have cancer, high levels of estrogen or any of the other scary side effects that soy is known to cause. Look for Non-GMO labels. Again, you HAVE to read labels. I will not buy pasta sauce, for example, if it contains soybean oil. This is not the same soy as my high-quality Shaklee protein shake that I eat on a daily basis.

Splenda(artificial sweetener), Sugar and high fructose corn syrup

Always avoid artificial sweeteners! Please stop putting the chemicals in your body….think about it. This goes right back to my posts about not cleaning with chemicals. Your body can’t detox the toxins if you continue to add them to your system. That Diet Coke may not cause the disease but it is not helping your cells to repair and defend themselves.

Sugar and high fructose corn syrups should be avoided on a regular basis so that you don’t yo-yo all day long. Try to avoid the sugar so that you don’t crash an hour or two hours after you eat. There are delicious foods you CAN eat like Strawberries, Blueberries and Raspberries in your morning shake. Stevia is another sweetener alternative. I always buy an organic variety and mainly only use it in my morning coffee.

Dairy

I know, I know, you are thinking, “If I can’t eat anything with gluten in it and now I can’t eat dairy, what’s left?” This one is a struggle for my family. We drink almond and coconut milks in our smoothies and when we need milk for cereal or a recipe. But cheese and ice cream are another story! We try to buy coconut and almond ice creams but they are so expensive! I am hoping to get an ice cream maker so that I can do this myself 🙂

So no milk or ice cream. Try to take it out of your daily routine. No yogurt, sour cream or cottage cheese either. If you want to have a little cheese, go for the hard cheese. Our bodies are not made to drink “mother’s milk” as an adult. Milk was intended for the young to drink from the mother because as a baby you need the hormones and the fats to grow. If you have noticed that you are gassy or have bowel issues, it could be that you are lactose intolerant. Once you remove dairy you will notice some amazing changes in your digestive system!

Eggs, Peanuts and Corn

JJ Virgin covers a section in her book for each of the 7 foods that I have listed in this post. She says to avoid any and all of these foods for the 21 days to detox them from your system. I did it and I know how hard it is to avoid them. Just so you know, these 7 foods are the most common food intolerances so if you feel like you have tried everything and nothing is working, then it is time for you to really look at what you are eating and put it on a calendar. Mark your 21 days and buckle down on all of the foods I have listed. Get JJ’s book and the cookbook that helps give you more food ideas. I have put our favorite recipes in this blog but they don’t necessarily avoid corn or eggs and they also may contain cheddar or parmesan cheese 🙂

I do avoid the peanuts! I don’t know exactly why, but with my mold allergies, peanuts are very likely to be covered in mold, so I avoid them. I used to grab them as a go-to snack and I really do think it made a huge difference when I stopped eating them regularly. I LOVE cashews and almond butter 🙂