Posts tagged vegan
Superfood Hot Chocolate

Ok team, I've got a warming, sweet-tooth satisfying, anti-inflammatory and deeeelicious recipe for you today.....SUPERFOOD HOT CHOCOLATE! This is a recipe I make often in the winter, either as a mid-morning pick-me-up or an after-lunch treat. It's chock full of superfood nutrients and is home run for satisfying sugar cravings. 

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Indian Dal Comfort Food

This stuff is straight Sunday night comfort food. Not mac n' cheese, not pizza, not take-out sushi....Nope, I want mushy, creamy, Indian-spicy dal. For my dal, I use split yellow mung beans. I've already expressed my love of mung beans here. But these are special mung beans. These have had their green husks taken off which removes the gaseous content of the bean making it much easier to digest. Without a husk to keep each bean intact during cooking, they all turn to mush. Mmmm.. So split yellow mung beans are the perfect food for babies/the elderly, as well as for healing the gut and cleansing your digestive tract.

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Autumn Paleo Porridge

I love a nice warm bowl o' oats for my brekkie in the Fall. Oats make for a satisfying and cheap breakfast while doing great things for your heart and digestive health. Some people can't or choose not to eat grains as perhaps they have an autoimmune disease, or they're following a Candida diet or Paleo / Primal eating approach. For my grain-free folks - guess what? Grain free doesn't have to mean porridge-free! By swapping out the oats for apple and coconut, you can achieve a porridge-like consistency. I wanted to give this bowl an Autumn spin so I added in butternut squash puree, ginger and some turmeric for all it's immune-boosting and anti-inflammatory goodness. The result is a rich, creamy, satisfying, grain-free, Paleo porridge that should definitely make it on your breakfast rotation this season.

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Spring Clean Watercress and Asparagus Soup

Spring is the time of year when our bodies naturally want to "spring clean" or detox after the heaviness of winter. If you tune in, you may notice that your appetite naturally begins to wane during the months of spring. Spring boosts natural fat metabolism which, in turn, decreases cravings, hunger and appetite in order to reset fat burning, start detox and loose any extra weight carried over from winter. 

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Muhammara (Roasted Red Pepper and Walnut Dip)

I love an afternoon snack of veggie crudites (celery sticks, baby carrots, cucumbers) with hummus. It's a great way to deliciously satisfy hunger between lunch and dinner while loading up on vitamins, minerals, fiber, protein and healthy fats. As much as I enjoy hummus, I can get a bit tired of it and am always looking for ways to mix it up, i.e. adding sweet potatoes and chipotle in for a Mexican twist, or swapping out the chickpeas for zucchini -- that kind of stuff. That's all good, but I really wanted to expand my horizons. This dip - called muhammara - answered my prayers. 

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The Ultimate Raw Chocolate Paleo Protein Balls

I have to admit, most bliss balls I've tried are a bit disappointing. They look great, but when I buy one and eat it, it's just not that good. Not sure what the deal is, but rather than trying to figure it out, I decided to try my hand at making my own to see if I could step up the game a little. Not to toot my own horn or anything, but these are pretty damn delicious. 

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Naughty Salad Dressing Turned Nice

Last weekend, I visited my yoga-camp-roomie and dear friend, Michelle, in San Diego. We met in Koh Pha Ngan, Thailand last February during our month-long 200-hour yoga teacher training. You can read more about that incredible experience here. We got along like a house on fire from the moment we realized we were bunkin' up in the same 400-square-foot room and have been great friends since. I went to visit her in San Diego to celebrate our one-year yoga anniversary (just kidding, sort of). I was keen to catch up with Michelle, check out SD and spend the weekend at the beach to mix it up from my usual weekends in the mountains.

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5 Reasons to Eat Fermented Foods + Spicy Kimchi Recipe

Hippocrates, the Father of Medicine, said disease begins in the gut. True, and so does health. There is growing research showing that the state of your gut health impacts everything from your immune system to the glow of your skin. We know that having lots of good bacteria taking up residence in your gut leaves little room for the bad bacteria (i.e. candida) to proliferate. All this healthy gut flora inoculates your intestinal tract keeping you happy, healthy, balanced and beautiful. 

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Fresh is always better? Think again! + Green Detox Soup Recipe

As a nutrition coach, I always trying to get my clients to eat more vegetables. I follow a general approach of teaching my clients to 'crowd out' the junk by adding in lots of nutrient-dense foods, especially veggies. One of the common hurdles on the road to a plant-based diet is that fresh produce often entails a lot of prep work (washing, peeling, chopping) and that takes time! Time that most people don't have! So what do I tell them?? Eat frozen veggies. When it comes out of my mouth, a tiny part of me cringes a little because few things make me happier than coming home from the farmers market / grocery store and stocking my shelves and fridge with heaps of fresh fruits and veggies, and I want my clients to share in a similar (probably not quite so enthusiastic) joy. BUT I would much rather them eat all frozen produce than put the idea of eating vegetables in the "too hard basket" in view of the time factor. That said, I decided to do a little bit of research around the nutritional value of fresh versus frozen vegetables and I was pleasantly surprised and humbled. The science gave me the humbling I needed to shut down that little cringer when I promote frozen produce to my clients. 

There is no denying the convenience of frozen produce, but let's check the science on whether we are sacrificing micronutrient and antioxidant value for the sake of luxury...

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Ayurvedic Green Gram

I haven’t eaten any animal protein (meaning: chicken, fish, pork, red meat, etc.) since I left Australia last Christmas to travel in Asia. I began my meat-free life in India at the Ayurvedic detox center, as animal products (except for milk) were not an option. The wellness retreat in Thailand where I stayed for yoga teacher training served only vegetarian meals. In the Himalayas in Nepal, we learned that no animal is allowed to be slaughtered in the Everest region (the Sherpas who live there are Buddhists) and therefore meat for the trekkers comes to the region either by plane or by road. It is then transported up the mountain to the teahouses on the back of a yak or Sherpa, in a straw basket “protected” from the sun and flies by a tarp over the top. After walking past a few of these yak trains or over-loaded Sherpas, my vegetarianism while trekking was confirmed. From there, we headed to Ubud (Bali) which is like a healthy hippie vegetarian heaven. There are at least a dozen restaurants right in the main part of town serving up incredible and unique plant-based cuisine so I thought choosing the meat option seemed like a waste. By the time I got back to the U.S. in April, I figured I would want to tuck right in to a nice piece of wild-caught Alaskan salmon or a beautiful organic and pasture-raised chicken breast, but I didn’t. There was nothing in my body or mind telling me I wanted meat again. I didn’t feel malnourished, weak, or tired; in fact, I felt light, energetic and wayyy less bloated! The latter being the most exciting for me as I have struggled with my digestion for quite some time. While I’m not saying my digestion is 100% healed with perfect elimination and zero bloating, I am confident that it is much better than it was six months ago. No longer eating animal products may be a large factor or a small factor in that equation, but one thing is for certain - you need a strong digestive fire to digest animal protein and, at the moment, mine is still a little flicker.

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Everest Base Camp Trek + Sherpa Nutritional Wisdom

My mum is a keen world traveller and a beyond anal organiser. She hasn’t finished one adventure before she’s got the next already in the pipeline. In the days (sometimes weeks!) leading up to any trip, whether she’s going for 6 weeks or 2 days, she has over-run the guest room in our home with all of her lists, piles, ziplock baggies, and travel-sized bottles, laid out over both beds and covering the floor. Admittedly, the apple doesn’t fall very far from the tree, so when we are teaming up for a mother-daughter junket, I’d be damned if we weren’t well-equipt! Especially in the healthy snacks department. I rarely, if ever, leave home (even for an afternoon!) without some form of healthy food in my bag. I am definitely a victim of low-blood-sugar hangry (hungry-angry) episodes. Even more than that, I hate being out and about and having to stop what I am doing to go in search of something healthy to eat, which can often, especially when traveling in unknown places, be hard to come by. Hence, I always make sure to have a small bag of almonds, a bliss ball, a piece of fruit or something of the like to keep me going. 

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Strawberry Chia Mousse with Cashew Coconut Cream

I reckon I love coconut more than anyone I know.  I eat it every single day without fail in one form or another. There are so many variations of the beloved coconut and I love all of them just about equally.  The following are constantly being replenished in my house: coconut oil, milk, cream, yogurt, kefir, ice cream, dried cubes, flakes, dessicated, shredded and, of course, whole fresh young coconuts with their delectable soft flesh and sweet water. Delicious! Just writing about it makes me want to rush out to the shops and get one.  Alas, I won't, but I will continue to bang on about my love affair. One of the best things about coconut is the fact that it is has a beautifully sweet taste (without fructose) so it nips sugar cravings in their tracks. It contains saturated fat which is really good for you and fills you up so you don't need heaps of it to feel good and satisfied.  Another awesome thing about coconut is that you can go either savory or sweet with your coconut creations. It works well for both! As for savory, I cook all my veggies in coconut oil.  I love adding a bit of coconut milk or cream to soups and curries in winter, and often just sprinkle some shredded or flaked coconut over any lunch or dinner meal. As much as I love coconut added to savory recipes, coconut combined with sweet flavors is where the real magic happens! Coconut milk is the liquid base for most of my smoothies.  I eat coconut yogurt with muesli / granola many mornings and coconut ice cream on the reg for dessert. You'll often find me sipping on a baby coconut and then digging in to get the fresh out for a snack.  Sometimes I even eat the flakes in handfuls right out of the bag. As I mentioned before, I rarely let a day pass without a dose of coconut-something and I don't see this coconut-love fading any time soon.  

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Maui-inspired Acai Bowl

I recently returned from one of the best weeks ever in Maui.  The second-largest of the Hawaiian islands, Maui is also known as the 'Magic Isle' for its rolling hills, misty mountains, and best-in-the-world beaches.  While the topography of the island is incredibly stunning and there are endless adventures to be had, the company was certainly the highlight of my vacation.  

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Living and Eating Seasonally + Winter Veggie Soup Recipe

Do you feel cold and dried out in winter?  Puffy and congested in spring?  Overheated and lethargic in summer? If so, listen up!

As I have mentioned before, Ayurveda is all about living in harmony with nature.  When we live our lives attuned to nature's rhythms and cycles, there are profound benefits for our health and sense of well being.

Why?

Because our internal landscape mirrors Mother Nature's.  This is where paying attention to seasonality becomes important.

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Rhubarb and Oat Porridge

Usually rhubarb is inextricable from sugar. Because of it's strong, tart taste, most people try to balance, or mask, this taste with sweetness in the form of white sugar (gasp!), or other sugar alternatives such as honey or maple syrup, when making jams or cooking pies and other desserts. I personally love the tart taste and don't find that this recipe needs sugaring of any kind.  See how you go.  You can also add a little upon serving, if you feel so inclined.

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Gung-ho Green Smoothie

As implied by the title, this smoothie is not for the faint of heart.  If you're just getting into making smoothies, experimenting with superfoods, and toying with the idea of adding vegetables to your breakfast, then perhaps you should hold off on giving this one a go, just for now.  Better to ease your way in...and I don't want to be the one responsible for scaring you away. For those of you seasoned smoothie-makers, this green smoothie is particularly awesome because it's fruit-free (meaning, minimal fructose) but still tastes great.

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