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The Health Mama

helping healing with whole food nutrition

Month

May 2014

Dirty Dozen list and Clean 15

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Here is a quick reference guide for which foods are ok to buy without it being organic. I have read that Papaya’s are GMO if from Hawaii so you still have to watch out for that. I just noticed yesterday that Walmart has started to carry organic potatoes and celery. Hopefully if we buy organic, the stores will provide more options for us. I try really hard to get the foods on this list organic or just not buy them. It really is that important. We are overwhelmed with toxins with everything in our food, air, lotions, beauty products, toothpaste, deodorants, plastics, phones, microwaves, and I could go on. We need to help our body to detox all this crap!! Buying organic on these items is one less toxin the body has to try and filter through besides it just makes us more toxic and then our body can’t fight what it needs to fight. This is the best time of year to buy organic, especially if you can find some great farmer’s markets or grow a little garden. We have been able to eat lettuce from our garden all week and the radishes are almost ready. We also had our first big bowl of strawberries from our garden. Enjoy all the great foods in season and look local, organic, and in season whenever possible.

http://goodfoodforbadcooks.com/clean-15-dirty-dozen/

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Homemade Balsamic Salad Dressing

I first have to share this awesome picture with you so you can have a little laugh on a Friday. Mya was outside helping me with my garden today. She decided to go in and get her swimming suit on. Well, you can see that she got the leg hole’s a little wrong. Love this girl!!!

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Here is one of my favorite Salad Dressings and a little video of how I eat Sardines, yes I said Sardines. I hope you like it.

Recipe:

1/4 cup Balsamic Vinegar
1/4 cup Raw Apple Cider Vinegar
2 TBS raw onion or shallots
4 garlic cloves
1 tsp sea salt
2 TBS raw honey
1/2 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/2 cup water

Blend all ingredients until smooth. Store in fridge for up to two weeks. Makes 2 cups. If you let it sit for at least 4 hours after making it, then it taste even better.

Trader Joe’s

Here are my goods that I buy at Trader Joe’s. I love this place!!

Poop!

I am a little obsessed with this topic because I think it is so important. I don’t get embarrassed at all when I talk about it and love when I have an award winning poop. This interesting thing that I have noticed over the years as I have cleaned up my diet is I don’t have gas anymore since I cut out most grains and when I poop, it doesn’t smell that bad. Crazy huh! Well, I ordered my first Squatty Potty this morning and can’t wait for it to arrive. I thought I would share this great video by Megan Telpner. I have her book and loved it. She has some great plant based recipes and ideas in her book, which I have on my shelf. Besides, I love how cute her and her husband are. She has a great blog and website with fun videos and great ideas. Thought I would share these fantastic tips with you all. Happy Wednesday to you all, especially Angie. LOVE you sister!!

Beverages

Angie, I hope it has been a good week. I know that you are still waiting for the results from your scan. We have all been thinking and praying for you each day. I know Heavenly Father is totally aware of what you are going through and he understands your pain, anxiety, and worries. I know he will help you, whatever the results that are given to you this week. We all have faith that you will be healed, if it’s his will, and be able to stay on this earth as long as possible. Love you sister!

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One of the great Halloween memories of the youngest four kids. Angie is the cute pumpkin in the photo.

I thought I would talk about beverages. I know that soda pop was a big staple in our home growing up. You rarely saw my dad without a Diet Pepsi in his hand. We would always drink orange juice every morning and we loved to get refills from Waremart of the fountain drinks every week. Many of our family are still addicted to certain drinks and juices. It hard to find some other options that can fill that need, especially if your not a big water drinker. Here are a few things to consider when choosing what is best to drink.

Juice– one little word-SUGAR. The average child between 4-8 years old consumes 7 x more than the recommended maximum daily sugar allowance. That is around 21 teaspoons of extra sugar a day! 14-18 year olds take more than 5 x the recommended allowance- a whopping 34 teaspoons. Adults consume less than the American teenager, averaging 22 teaspoons a day, that is still 4x the amount we should be consuming every day. Approximately 50% of all that sugar comes from beverages. We are literally drinking ourselves to obesity and disease as a nation. Sugar can also block the absorption of calcium and magnesium and can cause chromium and copper deficiencies. It can also restrict vitamin C absorption.

soda Includes:

1.Sugar
2. High Fructose corn syrup
3. Caramel color which causes hyperactivity in children.
4. Phosphoric acid
5. Artificial flavors-MSG
6. Sodium benzoate, possible carcinogen.
7. Brominated vegetable oil
8. artificial sweeteners
9. calcium disodium
10. High levels of acid, which erodes tooth enamel. Most soda has a ph level of 2, which is one hundred thousand times more acidic than a neutral ph of 7. I see this every week as a hygienist, especially in Utah. There is “mountain dew mouth” as we call it, everywhere.

There are more I could add to the list because soda actually depletes you of micronutrient so you are worse off after you drink one. Carbonation isn’t really the problem, which I always thought growing up. Carbonation does not leach calcium, harm teeth, or cause damage to your stomach like all of the other problems with soda. So, if you can buy carbonated water and add lemon or limes to it, maybe a little Stevia, then you could have a great drink. There is one soda that I found that is called Zevia. It is probably the best choice I could find if you really want a soda substitute. It is GMO free, no phosphoric acid and sweetened with Stevia. There is also a probiotic drink that is good called Kevita Coconut Sparkling Probiotic Drink. It has four strands of live cultures and is organic. It is also sweetened with Stevia. You can always order these drinks on-line if you can’t find them in the stores.

Juice-It is not a good idea. Juice without its covering or the fruit can quickly become a high-calorie, high-sugar, insulin-spiking beverage that just doesn’t satisfy you like eating the whole piece of fruit with all its fiber. I would avoid all juices, and yes even for kids. They don’t need any extra sugar added to their diets everyday. Have an orange instead of orange juice. Just think it can take 20 oranges to get 8 oz of orange juice, that is the sugar from 20 oranges instead of just from one and no fiber to slow down the insulin spike.

Sports Drinks-Do not get deceived thinking that these are healthy options. They are nothing more than soda with extra caffeine and a few micronutrients added in. (that your body doesn’t absorb anyways)These have some of the same problems I already listed with soda. Stay away from them and just drink water. You can add 1 tsp of a good quality salt, like Himalayan or Real Sea salt in your water and it will hydrate you better than any sports drink could. Also, coconut water is a great alternative, but you need to check the label and make sure they didn’t add sugar or other additives to the coconut water. Two great brands of coconut water are: Harmless Harvest Coconut Water and Vita Coco Pure Coconut water, unflavored.

Avoid “diet” everything and “sugar free” unless you know it is sweetened with Stevia or Xylitol. Remember that artificial sweeteners account for neurological symptoms like dizziness, seizures, depression, breathing difficulties, and weight gain. Some studies have linked it to cancer, epilepsy, Alzheimer’s, and multiple sclerosis. Aspartame contains methanol, which converts to formaldehyde- yep, the same stuff used to embalm the cadaver’s I worked on in college. This should be avoided at all cost.

Really if you can learn to love water or flavor it with lemons and limes than you are saving your body from ALOT of unwanted additives and money. You can buy sparkling water if you love the bubbles and add some fresh fruits or cucumber slices to it. Stevia has different flavored drops to add some variety to your water. It is just a great habit to get in and work on.

Eggs

I am getting new chickens this week and can’t wait to have pastured eggs in my house again. We had about 10 chickens last year, but unfortunately a mink killed all of them. It was horrible and sad. I think it traumatized my daughter Ella who went out to collect eggs one morning and came across the massacre. Then, my neighbor witnessed my husband tossing dead chickens over the hill behind our house. I am sure that was a sight.

All winter, I have been buying my eggs at the stores and trying to find the best possible choices and trying to figure out what is worth the extra cost. I thought I could share a post about what I learned in this process.

First, chickens like to roam and spread their wings, not live in cages with prohibitive space to move. Chickens are also omnivores and love to eat greens, bugs, and enjoy a good day of hunting and pecking in the dirt to forage for their food. So, the best possible choice is from your local farm or farmer’s market. This is the number one choice if at all possible. Eggs from pastured flocks contain two times more omega-3 fatty acids, four to six times more vitamin D, two-thirds more vitamin A, three times more vitamin E, and seven times more beta-carotene than conventional factory farmed eggs. One study I read said that pastured hen eggs had 170 percent more energy-boosting B12 and 150 percent more folate than the commercial eggs.

If you don’t have that option, or like me, just use too many eggs and always run out of my local sources, you need to know what is worth buying at the store. Here are some labels that they put on eggs.

USDA Certified Organic– These hens must be fed organic, non-GMO feed, free of both antibiotics and pesticides. The chickens must be kept uncaged in barns and warehouses and they must have outdoor access. (They don’t regulate how much though.)

Pastured-raised– This is not regulated but implies that the chickens were raised most of the time, roaming free in pastures. This creates a more micronutrient-rich egg.

Cage-free– The chickens aren’t in cages but don’t have access to being outside. It really isn’t as great as it sounds since they can’t peck in the dirt.

Free-range– This is basically the same as cage-free, but they are allowed some yard-time. This may only be a few minutes a day unfortunately.

100 Percent Vegetarian-fed– chickens are not vegetarians, they like bugs so the is not their natural diet and their eggs are depleted essential micronutrients. It does guaranteed that the chickens did not eat animal by-products in their feed and this is a good thing, but they definitely need bugs in their diet.

Natural or Naturally Raised– this means nothing!!! Don’t be fooled by this claim on any food product. It is just a way to get you to buy the eggs and implies they are in wide-open pastures but they are not.

Omega-3– I found conflicting research on these eggs. As long as it is not advertised as Omega-3 eggs and is pastured then it got it’s Omega 3’s from the insects and bugs, not from flaxseeds. Dave Asprey, who I respect and trust, has said to not ever buy the eggs labeled “Omega-3 eggs.” This is a quote from his blog. “The problem is that omega-3 oils can and do oxidize relatively easily and oxidized oils of any form isn’t very good for you. The way they make omega-3 eggs at most farms is they take flaxseeds, flaxseeds that are not suitable for human consumption and they feed them to the chickens and the chickens make these omega-3 eggs with incredibly pale white yolks. An old farmer friend visited the US not so long ago and saw an omega-3 egg, cracked it, looked at it, and said, “Was this chicken sick? I’ve only seen eggs like this from a sick chicken” and the answer was, “Yeah, the chicken was sick.” Chickens weren’t meant to eat a high-flax diet and they can barely produce eggs on those diets. Flaxseed oil isn’t particularly good for chickens or for people because it oxidizes so easily.”
Because of this, I don’t personally buy the Omega-3 eggs anymore. You can get the omega-3 more naturally from the eggs that are pastured and don’t actually have Omega-3 on the label.

The are some of the brands that I recommend and buy if you don’t have a local source of pastured eggs.

Vital Farms or Alfresco Farms– organic, Pastured-raised

Organic Valley– extra large organic brown eggs- organic, cage-free

Egglands’ Best organic– organic, cage-free

>The Country Hen– Organic, cage-free

Kirkland eggs– Organic eggs, cage-free, organic feed. These are Costco’s brown eggs in the clear container. They are convient for me since I go to Costco every week. It isn’t as good of choice as pastured eggs but this is what I buy if I can’t get any from my neighbors that have chickens.

AVOID– All eggs not in shells, including all liquid or powdered eggs. All eggs using meaningless claims like natural, no hormones, and United Egg Producers Certified.

Butter is Back

Angie, I hope you had a wonderful Mother’s Day. You sure deserve it. I will be thinking about you all day tomorrow and praying for some good results from the scans. I thought I would do a post and talk a little about butter. We grew up in the NO FAT craze and it has been hard for me to change the way I think about fat. I wish I could go back in time and do things different, but that is life. I remember always making cakes that were non-fat, but just full of sugar!!! So much worse for you than the fat was and that fat would have slowed down the insulin spike I got from those things. We were the queens of making non-fat desserts. I seem to remember being the one that ate the whole cake myself though, and I am pretty sure you only had one piece. You always had so much self control. It has been wonderful to taste butter again and realize how great it is for you. It definitely makes any vegetable taste better and also helps you absorb the vitamins in those veggies.

Have noticed that when I refer to adding butter and meat back into my diet, I always say, “Grass-fed?” I think my neighbors and friends think I am a little crazy or maybe a little “snooty”. I don’t know how it comes across, but the reason I use those words when I am talking about food is because the quality of foods mean so much to me and regular butter is a totally different food than organic, grass-fed butter. It is a completely different food. There is a HUGE difference. Grass-fed butter has higher quantities of the essential micronutrients and grass-fed dairy cows produce butter that has 50 percent mare of the vitamins E and A and nearly 400 percent more beta-carotene (which gives the butter a deeper yellow color) than the butter of factory-farmed cows. Cows are suppose to eat grass, and when they do, they properly receive all the essential micronutrients and deliver them to you. Grass-fed cows deliver two fantastic essential fats: conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), which has cancer-fighting and fat-metabolizing potential , and omega-3, which cools inflammation.

If you get regular butter then you get what the cow ate. Unless the cow is pastured, it’s milk has measurable quantities of herbicides, pesticides, dioxins (up to 200 times the safe levels), up to 52 powerful antibiotics (perhaps 53, with LS-50), blood, pus, feces, bacteria and viruses. Gross huh! Cow’s milk can have traces of anything the cow ate and you are getting these hormones and toxins in your butter. The hormones accumulate in the highest concentration in butterfat. This is also the reason that I suggest, if you cows milk, you should make sure you are getting RAW, whole milk from grass-fed cows. I personally only get dairy from grassfed butter or ghee. I don’t do cheese anymore, unless it is a very special occasion and I then buy raw cheese, which I will post about soon.

Most people that can’t handle dairy, can usually still have butter because it is just the butterfat and not the milk protein, Casein, which is usually the cause of the allergy or sensitivity. If you are someone that still has problems with grass-fed butter then you might want to try GHEE. This is clarified butter and more of the milk protein is taken out in the process of making it ghee. This may all be new information to some of you. A good habit to change is to buy organic butter and grass-fed if you have the option. They sell it at Costco now and most grocery stores.

Here are the best brands of Grass-fed Butter: Organic Valley Pasture Butter, Smjor, Icelandic Butter, and Kerrygold Pure Irish Butter.

AVOID: Margarine and butter alternatives. Go for the real thing but make sure it is organic. Otherwise, I would just use coconut oil.

Just FYI: Land O’ Lakes Margarine– It has the highest trans fat content of any stick butter/margarine.
I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter Spray-it is made of soybean oil/GMO, emulsifiers, preservatives and artificial flavors. It can only claim zero calories and zero fat if the serving contains less than 5 calories and .5 grams of fat. If you look at a 12-ounce bottle that would be approximately 7, 397 calories. That is more calories and fat than four 8-ounce organic butter blocks. It drives me crazy how they advertise and try and trick the public into eating things they think are better for them. It seems so wrong.

Mother’s Day

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Happy Mother’s Day to all the women in my life. I wish I had more photos to show you of all the women that have influenced me. I always say that everyday is Father’s Day so it is nice to have one day a year, where we don’t have to take care of anyone but ourselves. I am so blessed to be surrounded by amazing women!! I have the best Mom and Mother in law you could ask for. I have fantastic sisters and sister in-laws that have taken care of their families with selfless service, courage, fortitude, and love. I have been blessed with friends who I can learn and laugh with as we are trying to figure out the Mom thing. I have the most fantastic neighborhood and ward that is full of extraordinary women. What a blessing to be surrounded with the amazing women in my life!!! I love you all and thank my Heavenly Father for you today.

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Angie, is one of the most amazing women. She is probably one of the greatest examples in my life. She has sacrificed everything to be a wonderful Mother to her children. She has taken care of them when times have been very tough for her. She has a love for them that is so deep and shows in all her selfless actions. She has worked full-time as a nurse and worked night shifts and crazy hours so she could also be the Mother she wants to be. She gave up the things she wanted to buy or do so that her children could have what they needed or wanted to do. She is beautiful inside and out. She is kind and selfless. She is strong willed and courages. She is quiet and shy so many people may not know the power that is in that little body. She is powerful!! I have experienced and seen the determination this Mom has shown. She is AMAZING!!! I love you Angie. I hope you have a wonderful Mother’s Day and get spoiled today. You definitely deserve it.

Dry Skin Brushing

Have you ever heard of dry skin brushing?
It feels amazing and is something I have done for years. The best way to detox is really from what you put into your body everyday, but this might have some benefits that can add in the elimination of toxins. I love beauty regimens that are good for you, improve the look of things, and also have some evidence of helping to support the body. This is practiced at many of the international alternative cancer treatment centers. If you don’t have any open wounds, sores, or it does not hurt you in any way, you may want to give this practice a try.

Dry Skin Brushing

The skin plays a vital role in ridding the body of toxins and impurities. Dry skin brushing is one of the best techniques to open up the pores of the skin, and to stimulate and detoxify the lymphatic system.

The skin is the largest organ in the body, and is responsible for one-fourth of the body’s detoxification each day. It also makes it one of the most important elimination organs! For this reason the skin is also known as the “3rd” kidney, with the lungs being known as the 2nd kidney.

Our circulatory system has its own pump (our heart) to move blood through our bodies but our lymphatic system does not. It primarily relies on our movement to assist it. Typically, the more active we are physically the better condition our lymphatics will be.

Skin brushing helps move lymph fluid and gives us a jump-start on health. When the pores are not clogged with dead cells and the lymphatic system is cleansed, the body is able to carry out its important function of eliminating toxins and waste material.

Under normal circumstances the skin eliminates more than one pound of waste products every day. If the skin becomes inactive with its pores clogged with millions of dead cells and other debris, toxins will remain in the body. This puts undue stress on the other eliminative organs, mainly the kidneys and liver, making them increase their activity. Eventually they become overworked.

Skin brushing helps exfoliate and invigorate our skin too. It increases our blood supply to the area bringing with it nourishment and oxygen. Dry skin brushing will not only help increase circulation and elimination of toxins, but will also make a huge difference to the quality of your skin and it will look and feel healthier.

Dry skin brushing improves the surface circulation of the skin and keep the pores of the skin open, encouraging your body to discharge metabolic wastes.

Dry skin-brushing – dry meaning not in the bath – will change the health of your whole body by helping it get rid of toxins.

Benefits of dry skin brushing

stimulates the lymphatic system
cleans toxins from the lymphatic system
helps digestion
stimulates circulation
increases cell renewal
strengthens the immune system
tightens the skin
removes dead skin layers and other debris collected in its pores

I made a video to demonstrate how to do it. My phone rang right as I was ending the video, so there a few words cut off at the end. Basically I was saying that it helps rid toxins from the body. Remember you do this before you shower, without any clothes on and you a natural bristle brush, not synthetic.

Here is the PDF file from the greensmoothiegirl website:
http://gallery.mailchimp.com/c43f556b1601e5f289ce4d471/files/Dry_Skin_Brushing_Instructions_GreenSmoothieGirl.pdf?utm_source=GSG+Newsletter&utm_campaign=f06def6454-skinbrushing_autoresponder&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_4ed741a693-f06def6454-34776901

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