Navigating the Grocery Store for Maximum Health

grocery cartIf you are confused by terms like cage-free, grass-fed and pasture-raised you are not alone. I advocate for a whole food, plant-based diet but I know that in the real world, people eat animals. Here are some guidelines and explanations of what you should buy and what to avoid at the grocery store for maximum health.

 

1)  Avoid GMOs – always purchase these products Organic:

  • Corn (any corn product such as tortilla chips) corn
  • Soy (tofu, edamame, soy milk)
  • Canola
  • Cotton (tampons)
  • Sugar beets (anything with sugar)
  • Summer squash
  • Zucchini
  • Hawaiian papaya
  • Alfalfa
  • Potatoes
  • Apples

**Corn, soy and sugar are common ingredients in other products. If the product you are buying is not labeled “Organic” you are eating GMO’s. Continue reading “Navigating the Grocery Store for Maximum Health”

Plant-based Diet: What I Eat in a Day

SOB burgerWhen I tell people I am a vegan, or that I eat a whole-foods, plant-based diet, they always say to me, “What do you eat?”

I think they picture me chasing a lettuce leaf around my plate. Not so. They are surprised when I cook for them or I show up to a party with my own delicious looking/tasting meal. If you are willing, try one meal. Maybe that will turn into two or more.

A note about these meals; in addition to eating completely plant-based, I also eat a very low fat diet. I do not eat oil, avocados or nuts. I occasionally have some seeds. A plant-based, low-fat diet has been proven to ward off cancer, heart disease, type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure. Anyone can benefit from this lifestyle. I follow Dr. Esselstyn’s Prevent and PRHD cookbookReverse Heart Disease (PRHD) plan.

I have frequently asked questions about supplements, protein etc. at the end of the menu planning.

What I eat in a day:

I am giving three examples from super easy-no time for preparation, medium preparation and full-out cooking. Obviously, these menus work best mixed and matched so you aren’t in the kitchen all day one day and not much the next.

Day 1 – Easy, little to no preparation (Think of these examples as entry level, transitional meals)

Breakfast:

Disclaimer, you are not supposed to have coffee on the PRHD plan, but this is where I draw the line. It is one of my favorite things in the world and I refuse to give it up! I have a cup of organic coffee with a little bit of Pacific brand oat milk. Remember, no nut or coconut milks, they are high in fat.oat-milk

Cereal combo of Eziekiel, raw organic rolled oats, and organic puffed kamut (you can use any cereal and it doesn’t have to be a combo, I just like this) with berries, ground flaxmeal, cinnamon and oat milk.

Tip: I keep frozen berries in my freezer and run them under hot water to defrost when berries are out of season. Continue reading “Plant-based Diet: What I Eat in a Day”

Special Seed Dressings and Sauces

These sauce/dressing recipes are from the legendary macrobiotic restaurant, Casa de Luz in cilantroAustin, TX. Use sparingly, especially if you are on a low-fat vegan plan. This is what I consider a treat and I mostly use these to top some steamed greens.

The Casa de Luz recipes are notorious for having to be tweaked, so taste and tweak. Thin out with water to use as salad dressing.

Pepita (pumpkin seed) Cilantro Sauce

1 c. pumpkin seeds toasted

2 c. cilantro leaves

1 – 1 ½ c. water

2 Tbsp. lemon juice, freshly squeezed Continue reading “Special Seed Dressings and Sauces”

Plant-based Grocery List

I know it’s cliche but the new year is a good time to begin better habits. There is no better habit to adopt than eating a plant-based diet. I’ve made it easy to get the staples that you will need. veggies

*MUST BE ORGANIC because it is on the dirty dozen list or may contain GMOs if it is not. Do you need your dirty dozen (most highly pesticided produce) and clean fifteen (can be conventional) list again? Don’t forget, that greens and hot peppers are super pesticided! https://www.ewg.org/foodnews/

Produce (go crazy, these are the basics)

kale*Organic Kale

 

 

Onion

Garlic

Ginger

*Potatoes

Sweet potatoes

* Zucchini

* Cilantro

Lemons

*lettuce

Fruits – be sure to refer to the dirty dozen list! Continue reading “Plant-based Grocery List”

EWG’s 2016 Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce

strawberriesCheck out EWG’s ‘Dirty Dozen’ and ‘Clean 15’ lists to help decided when you should splurge for organic and when you can save money by buying conventional fruits and vegetables.

Source: EWG’s 2016 Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce

Olive Oil is NOT a Health Food

145px-Olive_oil_from_OnegliaThere is no shortage of information out there telling you that you should be eating olive oil and coconut oil. I used to believe that. I also used to be on the verge of having full blown heart disease. Anyone who knew me would have said that I was a clean eater. That’s because we are truly misinformed about what clean eating is.

If you have been following this blog from the beginning you will notice an evolution. I used to eat occasional meat, eggs and dairy. I gave that up. I now eat only a plant-based diet. On top of that, I have also given up oil and avocados. I have dropped my cholesterol 100 points without using any cholesterol lowering medicine. I VERY RARELY have nuts or seeds, they are my big splurge.

Read Dr. Furhman’s article that tells you emphatically why oil is not a health food.

Olive oil is not a healthy fat; it is not a whole food—it is a fattening, low-nutrient, processed food, consisting of 100 percent fat.

Source: Olive Oil is NOT a Health Food

Vegan, oil-free challah

Happy Friday! You won’t believe how delicious this is. challah

Ingredients:

1 cup warm water

2 & ¼ tsp. yeast

½ c. organic vegan sugar

½ cup of organic unsweetened applesauce

1 tsp. salt

3 tsp. Ener-G egg replacer and 4 TBS. of water to mix (the equivalent of two eggs)

2 c. organic bread flour

2c. organic white whole wheat flour

Salt and sugar mixture – ½ tsp. of each for topping

Continue reading “Vegan, oil-free challah”