Summertime and the Eating is Easy…

Summertime is a time to relax, let loose and take advantage of the beautiful weather. Those of us who are determined to maintain a healthy way of eating may find ourselves in difficult situations.  Social gatherings, parties, big family reunions or the beach  may become a challenge. Try and take a few moments before going to any of these events. Preparation is the key.  Never attend any summer event on an empty stomach. Contrary to what some people feel, starving oneself can only lead to over eating when you are finally part of the festivities.  You may be asked to contribute a dish.  In that case bring an interesting vegetable either prepared or for roasting on the grill. Melons, mangoes and cherries are just some of the fruits that are in season. If you decide to make a cold salad use olive oil and vinegar instead of mayonnaise. It is both healthier and safer and has less chance of spoilage. Taste everything that looks appealing, take a break, give it time to register and then decide if you want a little more of something. Drink water. Dehydration from heat and alcohol can lead to over consumption of sugar. Bring an activity. Badminton, volleyball, chess, checkers can allow for a pleasant break instead of sitting around eating. Prepare when you are going to be attending an outdoor concert. Bring along your own snacks (trail mix, protein bar). Finally if you overdo it, learn from your experience. Get up the next day and get back on track. Summertime is always too short and should be full of fun. It is a chance to restore your vitamin D levels and stimulate your mental health by seeing and socializing with all those whose company you find enjoyable. Have a great time!

 

Astaxanthin…

 Astaxanthin say what?…

Astaxanthin is a compound that is derived from marine algae. Salmon, shrimp, krill, and flamingos are reddish in color. Why? Because they all have the consumption of this particular seaweed in common. It is one of the strongest anti-inflammatory agents and is beneficial for fighting cancer causing free radicals. A piece of Alaskan salmon would supply a good daily dose of Astaxanthin.

A Completely Guiltless Dessert..


 

 Ingredients:
– 1 Whole Mango
– 1/2 Lemon
– 1/4 Cup Coconut Water
– 4 Tablespoons 2% Plain Greek Yogurt Yogurt
– 1 heaping tablespoon Whey Protein Powder
– I Tablespoon Flax Seed
– 2 Tablespoons of chopped Walnuts
– 1/4 cup Fresh Blueberries

   Directions:
– Skin the mango and put in a blender with the coconut water, lemon and flax seed
– Place on a cup and freeze (about 1&1/2 hours
– After it is frozen run warm water carefully along the outside of the cup so you can turn it over and it will slide onto a plate (let sit for 7 minutes
– on the side mix yogurt and protein powder and place on top
-cover with chopped walnuts and surround
 with blueberries

(Serves two)

  Great combination of healthy omega 3 fatty acids, protein electrolytes and healthy quick burning carbs

Gluten yes, Gluten no, Gluten maybe…

 

The word gluten comes from the Latin meaning “glue”. It is a protein that is found, to some degree, in all grains. Gluten gives elasticity to dough, a chewy texture and allows it to rise and keep its shape. “Gluten Free” is the new catch phrase of the food industry. To understand why there is so much concern nowadays we should go back to the beginning. Wheat can be traced back almost 5,000 B.C. where it was cultivated by the Egyptians and was then called “Einkorn”. At that time wheat was what we now consider an untampered food source. As the years went on wheat was experimented with and cross bred so as to make it a stronger, more productive grain. It wasn’t until the 1940’s when the Rockefeller foundation working with the Mexican government cross bred a wheat which could come to full maturity at 1ft. as opposed to 4. This new strain was developed by increased use of fertilizers, pesticides and irrigation. This truly was remarkable since the main purpose was to address world hunger. However, this new strain of wheat was never tested on humans and simply went into production. Now after 70 years we have a tremendous increase in Celiac disease and inflammation caused by wheat consumption. This could be due to the fact that up until the 1940’s the makeup of wheat changed so gradually that we were able to adjust to the digestion of the protein within it. Our first experience with wheat (Einkorn) had only 14 chromosomes whereas present day wheat has 44. Secondly most wheat today is genetically modified which could be another reason why so many of us are rejecting it. Thirdly because of the enormous surplus of wheat that is grown in this country we can find it in almost every packaged food we consume along with hair products, cosmetics and dermatological preparations. Although you may not be suffering from Celiac disease, which is extreme, you may not know that you could possibly be allergic to wheat. This would exhibit itself in bloating and difficulty maintaining a healthy weight. If you feel inclined to take a break from eating gluten, eliminate all gluten grains (spelt, kamut, barley, rye etc.). But if you feel the need to have some form of whole grain, stick with the non-gluten grains (amaranth, buckwheat, millet, quinoa, oats etc.). You may find the experiment rewarding in so far as it will force you to experiment with grains that you were formally unaware of and in turn open you up to some new choices on your menu. If after all this you feel you still miss consuming wheat, there is hope. Wheat in it’s earliest form “Einkorn” is now being once again grown organically and many are finding that they are not sensitive to this earliest form of gluten.