healthy eating
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  • 5 Tips for a Healthy Summer Eating

    Summer can bring some challenges to our ‘Healthy Eating Habits’. There are so many activities and changes to our otherwise routine schedule, that those little things we routinely do can go by the wayside. Knowing this, if we just keep a few things up front and consistent, we can have a fun filled and healthy summer eating.

    5 Tips for a Healthy Summer Eating

    • Stay Hydrated If you are feeling thirsty then you are already dehydrated! If you are feeling “hungry” you could be getting dehydrated. First drink 8 oz. of water and wait a few minutes. If you are still hungry then go ahead and eat something.  12 Reasons You’ll Want to Drink More Water 

    Tired of drinking plain old water? Click HERE for some tips.

    • Eat BEFORE you leave home, unless you are going to a cookout 😊 This way you have control over what you are eating. You’ll also have more control over those items that look so tempting when you aren’t even hungry AND you will save money!
    • Be Prepared with some emergency snack. Preferably ones that can stand the heat like nuts, jerky or protein bars without the melty toppings. I like to bring a little cooler with me where ever I go. I put a frozen freezer pack to keep everything cool like veggies, fruit or even a protein shake meal that I froze the night before.
    • Stay Active. Relaxing is great (and important) but too much inactivity increases the likelihood of drinking and munching more than you should. Even healthy snacks add calories, moderation is key. Summer Activities to Burn 100 Calories 
    • Trade Out Empty High Carbs. Swap the hamburger or hot dog bun for a lettuce leaf, the chips for roasted chickpeas, crunchy veggies or popcorn.
    • Be Consistent with Your Protein & Fiber. Making sure you get both protein and fiber in every meal and snack will do wonders for your body and energy level.

    Learn more about Plant Protein

    Learn more about Fiber

    What do you do to help yourself stay with Healthy Summer Eating?

    June 17, 2017 • Essential Oils, Healthy Hints • Views: 262

  • Spices for Your Food – Enhance Taste and Health

    I’ve been cooking with herbs & spices for decades. I love the way they can really perk up a dish, but I never really gave much thought to the health benefits. Since I’ve been researching what are my best and healthiest food options, the how to use and which herbs & spices to use has opened up an exciting new world of cooking. And now that I’m into essential oils, my dishes are even healthier and more flavorful! 

    In this post I will share some of the health benefits of the more popular spices. For health info on herbs go to my post on the  Health Benefits of Herbs

    What, Where & Why

    • Spices are generally derived from the bark, root, fruit, or berries of perennial plants and trees. Examples: cinnamon is the bark, ginger the root, nutmeg the fruit, pepper the berry. Other spices in your cupboard are actually blends such as curry, chili powder, seasoned salt, pickling/pumpkin spices, etc.
    • Spices (& herbs) are classified botanically as fruits and vegetables. They offer higher levels of antioxidants since they no longer contain the water that makes up a large portion of fresh produce.

    cinnamon-oilOne teaspoon of ground cinnamon has the equivalent level of antioxidants as a half cup of blueberries or one cup of pomegranate juice. Just think of all the foods to which you add cinnamon!

    • Including spices in your recipes adds flavor so you are able to use less fat, salt &/or sugar.
    • Have anti-inflammatory properties.  Inflammation has been identified as a precursor to many chronic diseases, such as heart disease, allergies, and Alzheimer’s to name a few.
    • Some spices help to boost metabolism. The capsaicin in peppers are believed to have metabolic boosting properties.
    • Some spices help keep your blood sugar steady.
    • Help increase cell-protecting activities in your blood which defend you against many diseases, from arthritis to cancer.
    • If you eat foods that are flavorful and satisfying, there is a good chance you will eat less and consume fewer calories, too!

    Storage and Longevity 

    • It is best to store your spices in tightly closed containers in a cool dark place, like a cupboard away from the stove.
    • Most ground spices lose their potency after six months on the shelf. Whole spices keep their potency up to one year. It is wiser to buy small amounts that you will use up more quickly than bulk amounts.
    • Essential Oils are 50-70 time more potent than spices (& dried herbs) and when stored in closed glasscontainers away from light and heat, they will last for decades probably longer than you. Not all essential oils are created equal or to be taken internally. For this reason I ONLY use CPTG essential oils. I like that the oils I use are independently tested multiple times to ensure they are certified pure therapeutic grade, better than organic! Check them out HERE Contact me about getting wholesale pricing Kathy@kathyskinner.com 

    Learn about substituting with essential oils in my blog post 

    Some health benefits of common spices & blends

    Allspice – Helps with digestive & pain relief, used to treat bacterial and fungal infections as well as coughs, chills, bronchitis and depression. It resembles a mixture of clove, cinnamon & nutmeg.

    *Black PepperImprove digestion, promotes intestinal health, has antioxidant and antibacterial effects. The outer layer of the peppercorn stimulates the breakdown of fat cells, keeping you slim while giving you energy to burn.

    *Cassia or *Cinnamon – Can help regulate blood sugar, triglycerides, LDL, and total cholesterol in people with type 2 diabetes. Helps with purifying and water retention, inhibits bacterial growth and helps eliminate head/neck tension. Aim for one-fourth to one-half teaspoon of cinnamon twice a day. Add to plain Greek Yogurt, a drop of essential oil and fruit, in your oatmeal, etc

    *Cardamom – a spice made from the seed pods of various plants in the ginger family.   It offers gastrointestinal protection, cholesterol control, relief from cardiovascular issues, improvement of blood circulation, helpful with conditions of the mouth & bladder issues. It also possesses properties that cause excitement. Cardamom is used mainly in Middle Eastern cooking. It has a strong pungent flavor and aroma. I frequently will add a pod when making rice. It is the 3rd most expensive spice (saffron, vanilla bean)

    *Clove – has antiseptic and germicidal properties that help fight infections, relieve digestive problems, reduce bloating of joint discomfort, helps with macular degeneration and bad teeth. Cloves rank as the richest source of antioxidants.

    The benefits of antioxidants include powerful protection against all types of degenerative diseases such as cancer, heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, macular degeneration, Alzheimer’s disease, and many more. Sprinkle ground cloves on applesauce, add to quick bread batters, and add a pinch to hot tea. Grate fresh ginger into quick bread batters and vinaigrette. Add chopped ginger to stir-fries. Sprinkle ground ginger on cooked carrots.

    CocoaControversy on whether cocoa is a spice or not, I do because it is similar with some of the spices like curry, pepper, nutmeg, cinnamon and cloves. They all come in powdered form. It acts as a natural anti-depressant, antioxidant properties, can reduce blood pressure, boosts energy. When choosing cocoa to consume for health, it is Best to choose a high-quality dark chocolate. It should contain at least 70% cocoa and no dairy products.

    coriander*Coriander – Can be refer as both an herb and a spice Although the term coriander is used in much of the world in reference to both cilantro leaves and seeds, in the Americas, it generally refers to the dried cilantro seeds which are used as a spice both in whole form and ground. Protects against the seasonal or environmental threats, aids in digestion & helps settle the stomach & prevent flatulence, swelling that may alleviate symptoms of joint discomfort, protects against bladder problems.  It also helps improve or maintain healthy blood sugar or cholesterol levels.

    Coriander is a more subtle flavoring of spice & citrus flavor.  Coriander is often used in Spanish, Mexican, Latin and Indian cuisine. It’s a common ingredient in spice rubs, marinades, chilis, sauces, soups and curries and works well with onions, bell peppers, tomatoes and potatoes.  It pairs well with all the other spices in the “C” club: chili powder, cinnamon, curry and especially, cumin I use it in just about all my vegtable fermintation


    Cayenne Helps with pain relief, metabolism booster, prostate cancer fighter, anti-bacterial, helps with digestive issues & coughs, helps with migraines headaches, detoxifier. A dash helps bring out natural flavors of foods

    fennel-sweet1-800x800*Fennel Seeds/powderOffers digestive relief, anti-oxidant, helps maintain proper body functions, helps in prevention of swelling. Along with a healthy diet and regular exercise, can contribute to better health. It has a licorice like taste. Use seeds in breads, sausage, fish. Use essential oil to make tea.

    Garlic- Helps to destroys cancer cells and may disrupt the metabolism of tumor cells, protective benefits, reduces acne because of its anti-bacterial properties, help reduce inflammation. Add fresh chopped or minced garlic to pasta dishes, stir-fry dishes, pizza, fresh tomato sauce, and meat and poultry recipes.  ginger-1

    *Ginger – Can decrease motion sickness and nausea; may also relieve discomfort and swelling associated with joint discomfort, can also hinder blood clotting, an antioxidant. Ginger can be used in both sweet and savory dishes. mixed with honey and heated to provide a sweet gingery glaze on steamed carrots or broiled salmon fillets. Ginger also livens up marinades and sauces.

    Add a dash of warm sweet flavor to winter vegetables. Sprinkle Ground Ginger onto cooked carrots, acorn or butternut squash, or sweet potatoes.

    Mustard – Stimulates digestion, speeds up metabolism, inhibits cancer cell growth, reduces severity of asthma, decreases symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis, lowering of high blood pressure, helps with prevention of migraines

    nutmegNutmeg (& Mace)- Helps relieve pain, soothe indigestion, strengthen cognitive function, detoxify the body, boost skin health, alleviate oral conditions, reduce insomnia, increase immune system function, and prevent leukemia, and improve blood circulation.

    PaprikaContains capsaicin, whose anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects may lower the risk of cancer, benefits night vision, helps control blood clot formation. Combine paprika with other spices, such as garlic powder and cayenne, and use as a healthful rub for chicken breast, fish or lean red meat. Lightly coat sweet potatoes in olive oil and paprika, and then roast until tender, or use paprika as a seasoning for roasted or steamed carrots. Add a spoonful of paprika to your favorite hummus to add flavor, or roast peeled chickpeas in a mix of paprika and coconut oil for a healthful snack. Finally, try using paprika to season homemade soups — it pairs especially well with pureed carrot, squash or pumpkin soups.

    Saltmostly known as a mineral. Some people say that salt is a mineral and not a spice. In actuality salt can be used to flavor food; therefore to me it is also a spice. Sodium chloride (salt) is essential to the body helping transmit nerve impulses. It plays an important role in maintaining the blood pressure and regulating our body fluids.

    Turmeric Can inhibit the growth of cancer cells, protects against cognitive decline associated with aging, a digestive aide, cholesterol reducer, lowers blood sugar, liver detoxifier, speeds up wound healing. Use it in eggs, salad dressings, meats, poultry, fish & rice dishes.

    Vanilla – Helps relieve pain, aches, stress, anxiety, depression, gas, fatigue, vomiting and nausea. Vanilla beans can also be a natural aphrodisiac. It contains anti-inflammatory and pain relieving properties.

    COMMON BLENDS:

    Chili Powder – combination of cumin, coriander, chili peppers, garlic, cloves, paprika, salt, oregano, black pepper, & turmeric

    Chinese Five-Spice – ground cloves, anise, fennel, licorice root, & cinnamon

    Crushed Red PepperCrushed red pepper flakes are made up of a combination of red chili pepper types. Ancho, bell, cayenne and other peppers can all be part of the dried and ground pepper mix. Most of these peppers contain a compound called capsaicin, which can help deplete the brain of pain-signaling neurotransmitters, block inflammation, preventing prostate cancer cells from proliferating and inducing cell death, according to a study published in the journal “Cancer Research” in 2006. , appetite suppressant & loaded with anti-oxidants, enhances metabolism, increases satiety and helps with fat burning

    Use cayenne, crushed red pepper and paprika to spice up hummus, guacamole, cottage cheese and even mashed potatoes. She adds, “Give marinades or dressings a kick with a little cayenne or sprinkle paprika onto fish for a tasty and pretty change.

    Curry – cumin, coriander, turmeric, ginger, pepper, dill, mace, cardamom & cloves

    Pumpkin Spices – cinnamon, cloves & ginger.

    * spices available in doTERRA Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade Essential Oils which are safe for consumption. Get them HERE 

    JOIN & SAVE with Wholesale discounts (No selling, No monthly requirements) HERE 

    NOTE: The advice shared in document has not been evaluated by the FDA. The products and methods recommended are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any illness or disease, nor is it intended to replace proper medical help. Kindly understand that essential oils work to help to bring the body into balance – thus helping the body’s natural defenses to restore homeostasis

    November 9, 2016 • Essential Oils, Healthy Hints • Views: 564

  • Marinated Asian Eggplant

    If you have been following my blog, you are aware that I am diligently eating more raw. So it only made sense that I should look for a way to eat my eggplant in a raw form. This mean not cooking it over 118 degrees. I decided to try marinating it to eat as an appetizer or use in my salads. This is what I came up with. I love it both ways. It is a bit rich so it keeps me from over eating! I served it at one of my Healthy Habits classes and it got rave reviews even from people who don’t like eggplant. I have to give them lots of kudos for even trying!!!

    Marinated Asian Eggplant

    Makes about 5 -7 servings (28 Bites)

    Ingredients:

    • 3/4 lbs Japanese/Asian eggplant (Black Beauty globe eggplant works well too)
    • Pinch of salt
    • 1 tbsp. sesame oil
    • 1 drop ginger essential oil or 1 tsp. grated ginger
    • 1 tbsp. Rice vinegar
    • 1 1/2 tbsp. Liquid Aminos or soy sauce
    • 2 drops liquid Stevia or 1 tsp. sugar
    • 1 tsp. White wine or Vermouth
    • ½ Tbsp. Sesame Seeds

    Directions:058

    • Wash and trim eggplant ends.
    • Steam eggplants for 10 minutes or until barely soft.
    • Cut into bite size strips.
    • Sprinkle pinch of salt.
    • Combine remaining ingredients in a bowl.
    • Mix well (until sugar is dissolved).
    • Chill and marinate eggplants for overnight.

    1 Bite =13.5 calories, .5g Fat, 16mg Sodium, 2g Carbs, .6g Fiber, .8g Sugar, .3g Protein

     

    September 13, 2016 • Essential Oils, Recipes • Views: 842

  • Zucchini Stuffed with Turkey Sausage

    I love growing Zucchini because it is so easy to grow. If you have ever tried it, you probably also found that once it gets going it can get out of hand. You may have even found yourself with a few giant sized zucchinis. The green ones tend to loose some of their flavor but are still good for breads, cookies and cakes. This year I tried the Yellow Zucchini and found they retain their flavor even when large which makes them a better choice for stuffing! After a recent harvest I found myself with a 16 inch yellow zucchini so I decided to try it with my Turkey Sausage stuffing mixture. It was fabulous!!!

    Zucchini Stuffed with Turkey Sausage

    Makes about 6 Servings

    Ingredients:

    • 1 large zucchini (about 12 inches, yellow zucchini tastes better)
    • 1 lb. Turkey Sausage
    • ½ c chopped onion
    • ½ T minced garlic
    • ½ c chopped celery
    • ¼ c chopped bell pepper
    • ½ c fresh pureed tomatoes
    • 1 egg
    • 1 c cooked brown rice
    • 1 tsp sea salt
    • 2/3 c Fresh grated Parmesan Cheese

    Directions:

    • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
    • Cut zucchini in half lengthwise
    • Clean out seeds and puncture pulp with a fork several times
    • Combine remaining ingredients except cheese
    • Fill each half with mixture, mounding towards edges
    • Place zucchini in a large pan with about one inch of water in bottom of pan 063
    • Bake about 45 minutes until tender
    • Sprinkle with cheese
    • 068Broil for about 5 minutes until cheese melts and turns golden
    • Remove and let cool a few minutes.
    • Slice and serve

     

    Note:

    • Freeze well
    • Add a drop of Oregano essential oil to mixture for added boost of flavor and health benefits.

    070

    It is always nice having leftovers so I can have something quick for those days I’m just too busy to prepare a healthy meal. I sliced up the remained and put some in the refrigerator and some in the freezer. We warmed up and ate the refrigerator pieces about five days later and it tasted just as good as the day I made them. We haven’t had the freezer pieces as yet so I’ll have to get back to you. I am curious to see how well they hold their shape as well as texture and taste.

    Well the frozen pieces baked up very well and kept all the flavor of the original unfrozen pieces! They were softer so can easily fall apart on you if you aren’t gentle in getting them out of the pan.

    September 12, 2016 • Essential Oils, Recipes • Views: 449

  • Raw Black Bean Dip

    Don’t let this long list of ingredients scare you off. Getting everything out of the cupboard is really the hardest part of this Black Bean Dip recipe! If you are into eating more raw, then use dry beans which you soak, sprout ( to get the most nutrition) and simmer at 100 degrees for several hours. If it goes above 118 degrees then you will have lost a bulk of the nutrition.

    Black Bean Dip

    Yield: About 5 cups

    Ingredients:

    • 2 (15 oz) cans black beans, rinsed and drained or black beans sprouts1 1/2 cups of dry beans soaked, sprouted & simmered at 100 degrees for 2 hours  
    • 7 ozs of pkg soft Tofu
    • 1/2 cup chopped yellow onion
    • 2 tsp. dry cilantro
    • 2 drops Cilantro essential oil Buy HERE
    • 2 drops Basil essential oil Buy HERE
    • 2 drops Lime essential oil Buy HERE  Get Essential Oils at Wholesale
    • 1 clove garlic, minced
    • 1 4oz. can diced green chilis
    • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
    • 1/4 tsp ground cumin
    • 1/4 tsp chili powder
    • 1/2 tsp sea salt
    • 1/4 tsp black pepper

    Directions:

    • Put the black beans, tofu, essential oils, onion, cilantro, garlic, chili peppers, lime juice, cumin, chili powder, salt, and black pepper in a food processor or blender, blending until smooth.
    • Refrigerate for at least a couple hours to let flavors blend
    • Serve with tortilla chips, veggies, or crackers for an easy appetizer or healthy snack.
    • It also makes a great spread for a wrap

    Per ½ cup Serving: Calories-104, Fat-1g, Chol.- 0g, Sod-135mg, Carbs-17g, Fiber-6g, Sugar -1g, Protein-7g 

    black bean dip

    I love having this dip on hand for snacking, but I have been know to have it with a plate of veggies for dinner! Enjoy!

    Kathy

    April 21, 2016 • Essential Oils, Recipes • Views: 542

  • Starting to Eat More Raw Food

    There are different ways of approaching making changes to going raw, or more raw. That being said there really isn’t one formula that works for everyone. You may be a person that needs to research the information for months before taking the first step, and or you like to jump in and learn as you go. Let’s first look at what those who have been doing it for awhile actually eat.

    Eating Like a Raw Food Eater

    • Think uncooked, unprocessed, mostly organic foods.
    • Staples: raw fruits, vegetables, soaked/sprouted nuts, seeds, and grains.
        • Ideal percentages seem to be 75-85% fruit, 10-20% green leafy vegetables, and 5% nuts and seeds. Pears
        • Soaking nuts and seeds dissolve their enzyme inhibitors making digestion easier
        • Sprouted seeds contain vital elements which nourish our glands, nerves and brain. The hormones needed by the body are created out of the natural fat and other essential principles found in seeds.
    • Some raw food eaters indulge in unpasteurized dairy foods, raw eggs, meat, and fish. Remember there are some potential health risks associated with doing this.
    • Your food can be cold or even a little bit warm.
        • Food heated above 105 degrees begins to change from it’s healthiest form 
        • Food heated over 118 degrees is considered dead.

    Some Simple Steps to Get You Started

    • Keep it simple and eat a variety
    • Eat lots more fruit, start breakfast and lunch with it
    • salad greenAdd in more fresh veggies, a salad is more than lettuce and tomatoes (I like to add in sprouted bean or lentil, cucumbers, radishes, … well whatever I have on hand)
    • Keep soaked/sprouted nuts and seeds in the frig for easy snacking
      • Soaking removes enzyme inhibitors
      • Proteins, minerals, vitamins and enzymes increase 300% to 1200% with soaking / sprouting
      • Rule of thumb: nuts or seeds with brown skins (almonds, walnuts, filberts, pecans, etc.), have a high level of enzyme inhibitors and need to be soaked for several hours to ensure complete digestion. White nuts (macadamias, pine nuts, hemp seeds, etc.) require very short soaking time or no soaking at all, since the amount of enzyme inhibitors in them is negligible. Personally I choose to give them a quick soak just in case. I actually soak nuts all overnight, especially the brown skinned nuts —a great “universal standard” that helps keep things simple. Keep in mind that recommended soaking times may differ from one chart to the next depending on the original sources relied on and authors’ personal preferences.
    • Introduce eating more raw foods slowly into your diet
    • Try a simple new recipe each week, start with a desert or appetizer
    • Do your own research to learn what is best for you if wanting to go deeper Make it even healthier by using essential oils to boost flavor and nutrition benefits. Not all brands are safe for internal use which is why I ONLY use doTERRA Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade Essential Oils

    I have found that eating more raw food really wasn’t difficult once I decided to do it. Sort of like most things in life.

    Here are a couple easy recipes to get you started:soup cup

    No-Cook Tomato Soup

    Cucumber Soup  

    Happy eating!

    Kathy

    April 21, 2016 • Essential Oils, Healthy Hints • Views: 484

  • Healthy Holiday Helpers

    The Holiday Season is starting with parties, family gatherings and lots of goodies too! With all the activities and extra things to do, it is tempting to just grab anything handy to eat on the go! Oh no, what do I do?

    Here are some healthy holiday helpers to keep yourself on track with your health goals:

    • Plan ahead, bring water and food with you when Lunchyou are out and about doing your errands or traveling.

    • Each time you prepare a meal, make twice as much and freeze in portions to be ready for your next busy day.

    • champageMake ‘water’ your friend. For every cup of caffeine or alcohol you consume, drink two glasses of water.

    • Added 3-5 drops of doTERRA Grapefruit or Slim & Sassy Blend essential oils to your glass of water. This will help to curb your appetite and give you a refreshing lift in energy and mood. Get them HERE

    • Eat at regular times throughout the day, don’t ‘save up’ for the dinner party. 

    • Don’t stand near the appetizer or the buffet table. Take just a little and walk away to the other side of the room.christmas pudding with custard --- Image by © Royalty-Free/Corbis

    • Alternate your indulgences. Have a dessert at one party, but no appetizers or alcohol, then switch it up for the next party. 

    • Enjoy small portions of those ‘Special Foods’ that you associate with the Holidays & pass by those that you can get anytime of the year.

    • tastingWhen baking or creating your favorite recipe, watch out for the ‘tasting’. Those calories can really add up, even the “healthy” tastes. Put the mixing bowls in the sink right away under running water.

    • Get your sleep. 7 – 8 hours each night will help you to be more focused, have more energy AND get what needs to get done faster and better. When you’re tired you lose willpower and give in to your cravings. When you are rested you make better decisions in every part of your life.

    • If you find your energy level dipping or your clothes getting a journalingbit snugger, immediately start tracking everything that passes
      your lips. Do it diligently, EVERY day! It will help you realize just what you are doing or not doing.

    Do you find the holidays a bit overwhelming at times? Check out my blog “De-Stressing” the Holidays for more helpful hints.

    Sending Blessings your way for a wonderful Thanksgiving, Christmas & New Year,

    Kathy

    November 20, 2015 • Essential Oils, Healthy Hints • Views: 681