Coconuts…do what exactly?

Bruder bought a coconut, he bought it for a dime.. Okay, so maybe the cost of a coconut has gone up a little since Harry Nilsson but lemme get it straight…. coconuts are actually GOOD for you? Yes, yes, annnnd YES! … Continue reading

Boobs, hips, thighs and tummy, bring it on baby!

After 9 months of morning sickness, mood swings and late night cravings for oyster rockefeller (only a pregnant gal would understand)… To top it off, you now have to worry about whether or not you have been blessed with a stretch mark!  Boobs, hips, thighs and tummy, bring it on baby! 

Just when you thought you were taking every precaution to stay away from toxins, you missed one itty bitty memo.. your “natural” stretch mark ointment. As you all know, a large majority of skin care products contain ingredients which are harmful to our bodies. Unfortunately, sometimes pulling out the magnifying glass and playing the role of Sherlock Holmes is necessary to detect these toxic products. I get it, trying to pick apart the foreign language of chemicals on a label is difficult …I don’t entirely understand either (can you sayP-Phenylenediamine?). For this reason, the wonderful Environmental Working Group (EWG) has come up with a database which contains over 69,000 products to give people like you and me the power to know what the hell we’re absorbing into our system! Hallelujah.

Skin Deep is a database which informs the consumer with the hazard/concern rating as well as the data availability. Both of Skin Deep’s rating factors are calculated from information drawn from the nearly 60 integrated toxicity, regulatory, and study availability databases. They have divided these databases into 260 individual categories ranging from “known human carcinogen according to EPA” to “skin irritant identified by the Cosmetic Ingredient Review panel.” Then, they mapped each of these categories into one of 205 “score categories”. Each category is ranked with a scare according to a subjective assessment of its relative importance to public health or regulatory compliance, and then assigned a weight to each score category, also described in tables below. Huh?? Better yet, Check it out  yourself!

Take a look what Skin Deep has to say about the popular stretch mark ointment “Bio Oil”! Rating: 7! (0 being the least harmful, 10 being the most)

What’s a prego lady to do? 

Try doubling the recipe so it will last you through your pregnancy.

1/ 2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup aloe vera gel (common, buy the plant yourself and put your hubby to work!)
liquid from 6 capsules of Vitamin E (with the extra vitamin E, use it as a preservative/antioxidant in your oils!)
liquid from 4 capsules of vitamin A
Mix all ingredients in a blender and store in refrigerator.  

Aloe Vera Gel grows in arid climates and is widely distributed in Africa, India, Nepal and other arid areas. Aside from its many healing attributes, aloe vera gel is known to be an immune system stimulant and most importantly its ability to heal the skin. This medicinal plant is able to reduce stretch marks by moisturizing and rejuvinating the skin. This is primarily done by stimulating the synthesis of elastin and collagen.
Caution: avoid external use during pregnancy

According to over 700 published studies, Vitamin A, also known as retinol, is proven to be necessary for healthy skin. A lack or deficiency of Vitamin A can cause dry, rough and damaged skin along with many other problems.

Vitamin E is a fat-soluble vitamin which contains tocopherols and tocotrienols. It is a powerful antioxidant which protects the skin against free radical damage. Free radicals are detrimental to the skin and specifically stretch marks as they break down collagen and elastin in the skin.

When purchasing Olive Oil, it is important to look for “extra virgin” and “cold pressed” to ensure the beneficial properties have not be damage from the heat during the pasteurization of the oil. Olive oil is a good source of Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids. Apply to your belly and it will function as a softening agent, lubricant and along with Vitamin E, it has been known to replace tissue.

Better than Narnia Banana Bread

Oh by George. Being a nutritionista, I can’t believe I’ve gone this long without posting a delicious recipe! My apologies. 

I came home last week and was craving something tasty. I found myself staring in the freezer as if it had turned into Narnia and something mystical was about to happen. Instead, something better happened…I came across 6 brown frozen bananas. SCORE! The rest is history.

Better than Narnia Banana Bread

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a medium-sized loaf pan or a preferred pan and set aside.

1 cup bananas, mashed
2 organic eggs
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup ghee, melted (can substitute with organic butter or coconut oil)
1 tsp. vanilla
1/4 cup apple sauce

Mix the above ingredients in a large bowl and set aside.

1 cup brown rice flour
1/4 cup buckwheat flour
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 cup shredded coconut (optional)
1 tsp. aluminum-free

Mix the above ingredients in a separate bowl. Combine both dry and wet ingredients and mix well. Pour mixture into pan and bake for 20 minutes or until cooked through. (I took it out juuuust slightly before and it finished while cooling)

OPTIONAL:
1/4 cup chocolate chips (I use carob)
1/4 cup cacao nibs

PS – I am WELL aware that I am NOT a photographer! The wonders of a cell phone camera without flash! 🙂

Let’s get shrooming boys!

Okay ladies, you’re invited too, but it’s Movember and we’ve gotta support the fellas this month!

Sadly, it’s safe to assume that you or someone close to you has struggled with cancer in one way or another. When considering a diet to support cancer, we automatically think of antioxidants/phytonutrients, a diet rich in fruits, vegetables and fiber, alkalinizing foods, dark leafy greens and the list goes on. Although these are excellent suggestions, I bet the word fungi doesn’t come to mind. Yes, fighting the big “c” with fungi.

Medicinal mushrooms have definitely earned the title of being wellness warriors. Although mushrooms have been used as a healing food since the ancient Romans and Egyptians, “new” research has come out proving that mushrooms and mushroom extracts are strong little fighters against cancer, especially in the case of breast and prostate cancers. Many cultures have long considered mushrooms to be tonics which strengthen and invigorate the immune system. Hello!? Awesome.

What makes Mushrooms Movember Warriors?

– One of the most commonly known active components in mushrooms are polysaccharides. After eating these little warriors, immune cells in the intestinal wall engulf the polysaccharide and set off a chain reaction which results in an increased number and activity of natural killer cells. In case you were too busy passing notes in high school biology class, natural killer cells (also known as “NK Cells”) are agents of the immune system which destroys bacteria, viruses and malignant cells.

– Mushrooms contain CLA  which is known to slow down the activity of an enzyme needed to make estrogen. Cancers of the sex organs thrive in a high estrogen environment, yes boys..even YOU can have too much estrogen!

– Mushrooms are a great source of selenium. Selenium is a powerful antioxidant. Aside from slowing the rate of tumour progression,studies have shown that men who consume high amounts of selenium in their diet have a decreased risk of developing prostate cancer.

Along with many other beneficial properties, these shrooming soldiers may play a large roll in fighting the battle against cancer. I’ve come to terms that fighting with fungi is not as trendy as growing a “sexy” mustache but keeping this in mind, do me a favour and keep up to date with your research. Be proactive, take control of your own health and remember to turn aaaand cough.

Check it out: http://www.ted.com/talks/paul_stamets_on_6_ways_mushrooms_can_save_the_world.html