January 2009 Newsletter
January 1, 2009 By Billy
Optimal Winter Nutrition
A classic tip that I have emphasized again and again is adding more nutrient dense foods to the diet . . . i.e. raw veggies, whole grains, superfoods. Highly nutritious/enzyme rich foods will absolutely be reflected through better overall health. You may remember from my newsletters or classes that I explain how highly nutritious foods really give the body a satisfied feeling and abate cravings that help to protect us from overeating.
Since I have explained this one before, I’ll keep this point brief. However, it is an extremely effective principle, and reflecting back on this idea from time to time will prove to be helpful. The principle that I want you to understand here is very simple and is a good one to understand as we are getting into the colder season. And it’s simply this . . . have the right cooked foods in the diet that have a warming effect on the body. This idea may be a surprise to some of you . . . you likely remember how I emphasize adding more raw (uncooked) foods to your lifestyle. And so it would seem there is a little conflict here, but here’s the bottom line . . . raw foods in general have a cooling effect on the body, and cooked foods have a warming effect. This is a timeless piece of wisdom from Chinese medicine and deserves to be considered. And keep in mind that a large percentage of those eating a primarily raw diet live in warmer climates like southern California, Arizona, and Hawaii. Naturally a diet that is cooling for the body works better in a warm climate.
If you’re in a colder climate, having some warming cooked foods in the diet is important. And we’re definitely not talking burgers, fried chicken, pizza, and potato chips . . . no! Yes, they may be warming but it would come with a price . . . other elements of your health, like your waistline.
We’re talking organic whole grains (like quinoa, brown rice, millet, oats) and organic veggies (winter favorites: pumpkin, squash, sweet potato, kale, spinach, broccoli). Essentially what happens is these cooked foods fire up the spleen, which boosts the metabolic function, thus enabling the body to more effectively generate heat. And it goes far beyond just feeling warm too! As mentioned it keeps the metabolism up which is helpful as the metabolism generally slows down in the cooler season. Keeping a healthy warm temperature also keeps the immune system strong and energy levels up.
We’re looking for a healthy balance here. In general many people need to be adding more raw fruits and vegetables to their lifestyle. But we can have more of both – raw foods and the right cooked foods. And changing the diet with the changing of seasons to give ourselves what feels good in the body is natural and easy.
One important consideration is that certain nutrients are lost in the heating/cooking process that could be especially beneficial this time of year like immune boosting vitamin C, beta-carotene, and enzymes. But also some nutrients are heat stable and can actually become more available, particularly minerals. And especially having the green superfood formula on a daily basis assures that any potential gaps in your nutrition are thoroughly filled.
More good news. I’ve got some wonderful new recipes for you to try. These are designed to satisfy the winter palate by keeping you warm and cozy, yet still maintain optimal nutrient content. Enjoy!
SOME OF MY FAVORITE WINTER RECIPES:
Chillied Red Quinoa with Spinach Salsa Dressing
Red Quinoa (regular quinoa is fine also)
1/2 pound spinach
chili powder blend
Celtic sea salt
1 jalapeno pepper
bunch of cilantro
2 juicy Roma tomatoes
Into pot (best if you do this first step earlier in the day – then it can just sit at room temperature, and the Quinoa partially sprouts and becomes more protein available, and it cooks faster):
1 cup red quinoa
3 cups water
1/2 cup shelled edemame
Cook covered at low boil for 10-12 minutes are until water is nearly absorbed. Do not stir.
Sprinkle into pot heaping tablespoon chili powder blend, teaspoon sea salt, round tablespoon coconut oil. Cook for 2-3 more minutes. Squeeze half of lemon into pot, give it a stir and turn of heat.
Into Blender: 1/2 pound spinach
1/4 cup olive oil
Juice of 3 lemons
slightly round teaspoon Celtic sea salt
2 tomatoes (squeeze some of the juice out first and salsa will be thicker)
1 jalapeno pepper with seeds removed (otherwise will be too spicy!)
1/4 cup cilantro leaves
Blend until smooth. This is also a great dip!
Serve quinoa and drizzle desired amount of green salsa over top.
This could be your new favorite dish. Serves 3.
Curried Kale Soup – This one is super simple and it always satisfies!
1 sweet potato
2 cloves garlic
3 green kale leaves
1 head broccoli
Indian curry powder
Celtic sea salt
Blend in blender:
3 tomatoes and 2 cloves garlic
Add to pot with:
cubed sweet potato
chopped broccoli flowers
3 kale leaves finely chopped (first remove stems)
round tablespoon Indian curry powder
round tablespoon cold-pressed coconut oil
slightly round teaspoon Celtic sea salt or salt to taste
Cook at low boil for 10 minutes Add juice of 1 lemon. Scoop 1.5 cups of soup into blender and blend until smooth. Important: Hold dish towel over top of lid on blender. The steam from soup can potentially pop the lid off when you hit blend. Also helps to start on low speed.
Add blended soup back to pot and stir.
Add water if needed.
Classic Oatmeal – A timeless favorite!
Into pot: 1 cup rolled oats, 2 cups water, sprinkle Celtic sea salt.
Cook at low boil for 5 to 10 minutes. Do not stir.
Add 2 tablespoons maple syrup and 1 round tablespoon coconut oil
Sprinkle of cinnamon
Turn off heat and let stand for 5 minutes.
Stir, serve, and then sprinkle Billy’s Sprouted Almonds on top.
This is pure comfort in a bowl.
Ginger Lemon Honey Tea – A warming health tonic
Piece of fresh ginger (the size of your thumb)*
Heaping tablespoon unfiltered raw honey
Juice of 1 lemon
4 cups water
*or you can just chop or grate the ginger and stir all the ingredients.
Blend, strain, heat, serve. Serves 3. Enjoy!