Tag Archive | better digestion

Off to a rough start

Yesterday was the official start day of my training and eating healthier.
It started off well with a nice sleep in with the beau and successful morning shakes.
Puttering around catching up on laundry and all the fun stuff in life left me drained. I had a headache and felt off. The only culprit I can blames caffeine, I always have one cup of coffee a day so not having on yesterday morning was killer. By 5pm I had to try a run, we downloaded this app which sets you up on a route around your area and we were set to do 5km. We started to run and by 0.5km My head was pounding! I pushed to try and finish but at 3km I couldn’t take it anymore so we headed back home.
I would strongly suggest to anyone who is looking at changing their diet AND training plan is to start the meal plan a week before. Training when your body is in detox is hell!
Today is a rest day but I’m back and at it tomorrow.
here’s hoping for a more successful Run.

To check out my daily fitness activities check out my Twitter & Instagram

Soaking your Nuts? Why?

I never even thought that I should be soaking my nuts overnight. Here is an article Deidre (holistic nutritionist) sent to me.
Quite interesting. I find it brings out the almond flavor out more too 🙂

The Benefits of soaking nuts and seeds

By: Delicia Beaty and Sharon Foutch

Soaking nuts, grains, seeds, and legumes

Nature has set it up so that the nut, grain and seed may survive until proper growing conditions are present. Nature’s defense mechanism includes nutritional inhibitors and toxic substances that can be removed naturally when there is enough precipitation to sustain a new plant after the nut, grain or seed germinates. When it rains the nut, grain or seed gets wet and can then germinate to produce a plant. So we are mimicking nature when we soak our nuts, grains and seeds.

Nutritional inhibitors and toxic substances found in nuts grains and seed can be minimized or eliminated by soaking. These inhibitors and toxic substances are enzyme inhibitors, phytates (phytic acid), polyphenols (tannins), and goitrogens.

What are Enzyme inhibitors?

There are digestive enzymes and metabolic enzymes. Digestive enzymes help break down food. Metabolic enzymes help every biological process the body does. Enzyme inhibitors will clog, warp or denature an active site of an enzyme. They may also bind to the enzyme, which will prevent the intended molecule from binding. “Once again, the habits of traditional peoples should serve as a guide. They understood instinctively that nuts are best soaked or partially sprouted before eaten. This is because nuts contain numerous enzyme inhibitors that can put a real strain on the digestive mechanism if consumed in excess.”

What are Phytates?

“All grains contain phytic acid in the outer layer or bran. Untreated phytic acid can combine with calcium, magnesium, copper, iron and especially zinc in the intestinal tract and block their absorption. This is why a diet high in unfermented whole grains may lead to serious mineral deficiencies and bone loss. The modern misguided practice of consuming large amounts of unprocessed bran often improves colon transit time at first but may lead to irritable bowel syndrome and, in the long term, many other adverse effects.”

 

Why soak nuts, grains and seeds?

  • 1. To remove or reduce phytic acid.
  • 2. To remove or reduce tannins.
  • 3. To neutralize the enzyme inhibitors.
  • 4. To encourage the production of beneficial enzymes.
  • 5. To increase the amounts of vitamins, especially B vitamins.
  • 6. To break down gluten and make digestion easier.
  • 7. To make the proteins more readily available for absorption.
  • 8. To prevent mineral deficiencies and bone loss.
  • 9. To help neutralize toxins in the colon and keep the colon clean.
  • 10. To prevent many health diseases and conditions.

“Soaking allows enzymes, lactobacilli and other helpful organisms to break down and neutralize a large portion of phytic acid in grains. Soaking in warm water also neutralizes enzyme inhibitors, present in all seeds, and encourages the production of numerous beneficial enzymes. The action of these enzymes also increases the amount of many vitamins, especially B vitamins. During the process of soaking and fermenting, gluten and other difficult-to-digest proteins are partially broken down into simpler components that are more readily available for absorption.”

What can be used to soak nuts, grains and seeds?

I have found many references to soaking nuts, grains, and seeds in water, salt water, or a warm water mixture with something acidic like yogurt, whey or lemon juice. It seems within 7 to 24 hours the enzyme inhibitors are neutralized and the anti-nutrients are broken down regardless of the method you choose. There is evidence that the process works when you see sprouting begin.

How long does the soaking process take?

“As little as seven hours of soaking in warm acidulated water will neutralize a large portion of phytic acid in grains. The simple practice of soaking cracked or rolled cereal grains overnight will vastly improve their nutritional benefits.” “Flour products should be soaked at room temperature for at least twelve hours but better results may be obtained with a twenty-four hour soaking.”

 

Are the nuts, grains and seeds used wet?

I have enjoyed almonds wet. If you choose to try consuming anything in the soaked state, make little batches and store them in the refrigerator. Usually everything that is soaked is dried in a dehydrator or oven on the lowest possible setting for 24 – 48 hours to remove all moisture.

Wheat berries can be soaked whole for 8 to 22 hours, then drained and rinsed. Some recipes use the whole berries while they are wet, such as cracker dough ground right in the food processor. You can also dry sprouted wheat berries in a low-temperature oven or dehydrator, and then grind them in your grain mill and use the flour in a variety of recipes. Nuts, grains, seeds and legumes can be ground up to use as flour in many recipes after they have been dried.

 

Any advice on what to do with legumes?

Maureen Diaz recommends soaking any beans or legumes in water and vinegar for at least twelve hours before cooking. Soaked and dried beans may be ground up and used as flour for thickening and baking. This is helpful for those on a gluten free diet.

One recommendation includes placing soaked kombu or kelp seaweed in the bottom of the pot when soaking legumes. Add one part seaweed to six or more parts legumes. This is for improved flavor and digestion, more nutrients, and faster cooking. “Soak legumes for twelve hours or overnight in four parts water to one part legume. For best results, change the water once or twice. Lentils and whole dried peas require shorter soaking, while soybeans and garbanzos need to soak longer. Soaking softens skins and begins the sprouting process, which eliminates phytic acid, thereby making more minerals available. Soaking also promotes faster cooking and improved digestibility, because the gas-causing enzymes and trisaccharides in legumes are released into the soak water. Be sure to discard the soak water. After bringing legumes to a boil, scoop off and discard foam. Continue to boil for twenty minutes without lid at beginning of cooking to let steam rise (breaks up and disperses indigestible enzymes).”

Humpday-Cabbage, Carrots, & Rice! Oh My!

4 days into my gut healing process and I feel so good.

My morning routine swayed slightly. I bought a package of the Vega protein shake at the store and decided to give it a whirl. I really liked that it was thicker in consistency. At first taste all I could taste was artificial sweetener. It was strange. The surface of my tongue got numb feeling and it tasted exactly like that artificial sweeter you can taste in ‘diet’ drinks or ‘no sugar added’ items.
I looked up the non medical ingredients and they include:
“Natural Dutch cocoa powder, natural chocolate, cocoa, xanthan gum, stevia leaf extract.”
Could it be the Stevia extract? Stevia is definitely not artificial. I’m really not sure what I was tasting in this shake but It had me so thirsty. After drinking the shake I had to down 2 large water bottles before the thirst subsided.
Matt decided to try out a concoction of his own with the sprouted brown rice protein powder we already bought last Saturday.
He added a frozen banana and also melted the coconut oil like I did yesterday.
Curious about his concoction I took a teenie sip. Not knowing if I could have banana I though a sip would be best.
It was surprisingly tasty! I couldn’t believe that a simple banana could alter a taste that much! This trick will definitely make this shake more tolerable.

For lunch it was Matt’s turn to make lunch. He made a veggie soup. He used veggie broth and chopped up cabbage to look like noodles. He added cooked onion, carrots, and asparagus. It was delish. Quick, Easy, and Frugal!

For dinner I have to confess I “cheated” :s
I got Sushi!!
I got a cucumber roll and an avocado roll. I know I shouldn’t have because the mirin in the rice but I needed to spice things up a bit. I did not have soy sauce and it did take me from 6-9 to eat it all. I was not hungry today. I had nuts for snack at 1030 and 230 and that had me quite content. I knew I had to eat more so I ate all the sushi but I could have been fine without it.

I had dance again today. My wednesday schedule is 3 jazz classes and a dance conditioning class. Since it was a beautiful day I decided to take my students out for a run. Our little loop around the surrounding neighborhood was about 1.4miles…….and it took us 18min!!!! ha they are definitely not used to this type of thing but they gave it all they got and worked hard to complete it. They seemed to enjoy it and discussed goals for the next run 🙂

So that’s It for today. Its 11:30 and I’m ready for sleep!
Good Night!!!!

Do you drink protein shakes? what are your favorite brands?
have you tried Vega? What were your thoughts?

Manic Monday

well not exactly a manic of a Monday but I decided to play on my last post “Sunday Funday”
If you have no idea what I’m referencing you live in a box and need to click on this link 😉 😉

now you are more versed in the wonderful era we call the ’80’s

So today I woke up with residual headache from yesterday. I woke up and did my new morning routine and felt better.
Today, in an attempt to make my protein shake better I added my sealicious omega fish oil to my shake. It is flavored with lime (only one I found) and did find it masked the taste a bit. I think the chunkiness is coming from the coconut oil. It is solid at room temperature and so when I put my almond milk from the fridge into the blender the coconut oil just stays solid. It’s unappetizing having chunks and the top of your protein shake but I’m determined to make it better.  Ill try and warm up the oil and use room temperature almond milk.

I started work at 12 today so I had time to make lunch and dinner. With last nights fail and rice casserole I was determined to make this batch work.
Lucky for me I succeeded.
Ill post the ricipie here:Click me 🙂
It was quite good.

I packed zucchini sticks and almonds for my snacks and the rice dish for lunch and dinner.
I was finding myself really hungry soon after eating lunch and dinner. I have to make sure to pack some more snacks. When I got home I had steamed 3 carrots (cut in sticks) to eat. It was about 8 and was not planning on eating this late but I had to. As Im writing this I’m still really hungry. I’ll find a good balance eventually.

Today was a good day Overall. Although Ive had a migraine, failed attempt at rice casserole and always hungry I’m optimistic. I know this will go away and I will be so much better. I am One lucky gal and I’m so thankful for the love and support from my family and friends. My loving Mother reads all my posts and emails me about them as soon as she reads them. It makes me happy that she takes the time to read what I write and get caught up with what I’m doing. I’m blessed to have her as my Mom.
My mom was also my inspiration to knit. She knits a lot and is very good. Last mothers day I taught myself how to knit. As a mothers day surprise I knitted her a set of dish clothes for her kitchen. Since then Ive found joy in knitting. I have not done it in a while so today I picked up my knitting needles and am starting to make a coffee cozy. It helps me relax so this is what I did for myself today.

How have you taken time for yourself recently?

Day 26-The Perfect Veggie Burger(no tofu)

So I have to say my favorite veggie burgers used top be the ones from Costco and made my Kirkland (actually called garden burgers)
IMG_0222They had cheese, mushrooms and rice etc. I really liked the fact that there was no tofu. I don’t like how tofu disguised as meat products taste, look, or even their texture which is more dense and compact. I’m not a vegetarian and can eat meat so why would I eat the fake stuff?

This is why I like “veggie” options that don’t claim to be something else. I thoroughly enjoy “garden burgers” or the like because they are filled with veggies, rice or other grains, seeds, etc.

Since living our year plastic free we are unable to purchase my favorite veggie burgers, the burgers themselves are wrapped in plastic and the box itself is wrapped in plastic…a little much don’t you think?

So, We have been trying out different recipes for veggie burgers to make from scratch. Just the other day Matt made me dinner and made these veggie burgers. When he was putting it all together I knew they would be marvelous I could almost tell right away.

He researched and found this recipe on another blog. Its funny they were on the same quest as us…the quest to find the perfect veggie burger.

After eating this for dinner I knew I would not need to buy those pre-made burgers. I have finally found a plastic free, no additives, healthy, and damn good veggie burger.
I urge you to try it.
This is what our dinner looked like. IMG_20121202_194208 Click here for the original blog
Blog: Oh She Glows

Perfect Veggie Burger
Angela from Oh She Glows

Crunchy, chewy, with a crispy outer shell, these delicious veggie burgers have all the right elements we love in a veggie burger. Light on the beans, these burgers aren’t mushy in the middle, but have a nice mixture of breadcrumbs, chopped almonds, sunflower seeds, and seasonings to round them out. Best of all, they work great in the oven, frying pan, or even on the BBQ. They can also be made gluten-free by using gluten-free oats, Tamari, and breadcrumbs. Don’t have breadcrumbs? Just process a few slices of bread in the food processor for instant breadcrumbs. I used 3 slices of Ezekiel bread.

Inspired by Whitewater Cooks.

Yield: 8 burgers

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup onion, diced
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • Flax eggs: 2.5 tbsp ground flax + 1/2 cup warm water, mixed in bowl
  • 1 cup oats, processed into flour* (other flours might work)
  • 1.5 cups bread crumbs (I processed 3 pieces of Ezekiel bread until fine crumb)*
  • 1 cup grated carrots
  • 1 cup cooked black beans, rinsed and roughly pureed or mashed
  • Heaping 1/4 cup finely chopped parsley (or fresh herb of choice)
  • 1/3 cup almonds, chopped (toasted if preferred)
  • 1/2 cup sunflower seeds, (toasted if preferred)
  • 1 tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 tbsp Tamari (soy sauce)
  • 1.5 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • 1 tsp. oregano
  • Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste (I used about 1/2 tsp kosher salt)

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350F (if baking). In a large skillet, sauté onions and garlic in 1/2 tbsp oil. Mix your flax egg together in a small bowl and set aside for at least 10 mins while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.

2. Place all ingredients (except spices and salt) into a large mixing bowl and stir very well. Now, add seasonings and salt to taste.

3. With slightly wet hands, shape dough into patties. Pack dough tightly as this will help it stick together. I made 8 medium patties.

4. Cooking methods: You can fry the burgers in a bit of oil on a skillet over medium heat for about 5 minutes on each side. If baking in the oven, bake for 25-30 mins (15-17 minutes on each side) at 350F, until golden and crisp. For the BBQ, pre-bake the burgers for about 15 minutes in oven before placing on a pre-heated grill until golden and crisp on each side. Our preferred method of cooking was frying in the skillet!!

GF Note: To make these burgers gluten-free, use certified GF oats, GF Tamari, and gluten-free breadcrumbs.

Day 22- Minestrone Soup

Wonderful recipe that has never failed. Ive made it tonnes of times and have never been disappointed.
I got this recipe from the “Living the g.i. diet” by Rick Gallop. Continue reading

Day 20- Muesli

This is the perfect start to you day. Its delicious and healthy!

I got this recipe from the “Living the g.i. diet” by Rick Gallop
This recipe is good for multiple servings. I like to combine 1/3 cup of the muesli with 1/3 cup of water the night before and let it sit overnight. In the morning I nuke it and add milk. You can also boil 2/3 cup of water with 1/3 cup of muesli  the morning of which ever you prefer. Keep in an air tight container for up to 1 month. Continue reading