It's fig season in wine country! If you are like me, and don't want your delectable homegrown goodies to go bad, preserves are the perfect solution. My first attempt at fig preserves turned out pretty well for being sugar-free and pectin-free. If you desire a thicker preserve, the addition of pectin or gelatin may be considered.
Fig Honey Preserves:
Makes about 3-4 cups of preserves.
Place the figs in a large saucepan with water and coconut sugar. Stir and let sit unheated for 20-30 minutes. Bring the mixture to a gentle boil over med-high heat for 2 minutes, then turn down the heat to bring to a simmer. Simmer for an hour, stirring often.
As the cooking process progresses, the figs will start to break down. If you desire more mashed preserves, mash the mixture up with a potato masher towards the end of the cooking process.
Once the hour of cook time is complete, add the honey, lemon juice and lemon zest, stir and cook for another 3-5 minutes. Adding honey at this stage will allow for it to retain some of its healing properties. Turn off heat and allow the preserves to cool for a little bit. After cooling for 10-15 minutes, ladle out the mixture into clean jars. Place the lids on and allow to cool before placing in the jars.
The preserves should last in the refrigerator for about 3 weeks. If you desire a longer preservation, process the jarred preserves in a hot bath for proper canning methods.
I was able to make this recipe using homegrown figs and meyer lemons accompanied by local Sonoma honey. The fig preserves pair perfectly with goat cheese or chèvre. Cheers to health and sustainable living!
Bieler Broth Recipe:
Zucchini or summer squash, 4 medium
Celery: 3 stocks
String beans: 2 cups, ends removed and chopped
Parsley: 2 bunches, stems removed
Water, filtered: 1 quart
Salt: to taste
Butter (grass-fed) or ghee: optional when consumed fresh
Place water, zucchini, celery and string beans in a pot. Boil for 30 minutes. If freezing the broth, add parsley to boiling water for the last 5 minutes. Blend all ingredients in batches, adding the parsley and ghee or butter if consuming fresh.
Chia seed, whole: 2 Tbsp
Coconut milk, unsweetened: 1/2 cup
Homegrown plum: 1 whole, diced
Coconut oil: 1 tsp
Pumpkin seeds: 1 Tbsp
Directions for Chia Porridge:
1. Place chia seeds and coconut milk in a saucepan over low/medium heat, stirring frequently until plump.
2. Add additional ingredients after the chia porridge is added to a bowl.
My Food Choices on the BodyBoost Cleanse:
Typically, I have a breakfast similar to this one. I may have a protein snack (1 medium boiled egg or 1/4 chicken breast) a couple of hours later. Lunch is often a 32 oz blended greens drink and possibly a handful of nuts or a protein snack, depending on what I had earlier in the morning. Dinner includes veggies and a little bit of protein.
The cleanse is actually much easier as it seems. I encourage everyone to try at least the food portion of the cleanse to give the body optimal nutrition and a break from environmental chemicals. Aside from the dietary aspect of the seasonal cleanse, the cleansing practices of the rest of the cleanse simply contributes to whole body wellness and optimal health and vitality.
Ingredients: Per serving (10g fiber)
Chia seeds, 2 tbsp
Coconut milk or almond milk, 1/4-1/2 c (or to desired thickness)
Optional Toppings for Flavor (see below)
Pick 1, 2 or 3 ingredients from the list below to enhance chia pudding or porridge:
1 serving of fruit or fruit puree
1 tbs nut butter (almond, sunflower, cashew, etc)
1 tsp coconut oil (best in heated porridge)
2 tbsp pumpkin seeds
2 tbsp chooped nuts (walnuts, almonds, pencans, etc)
2 tbsp ground flax seed
1 tsp maple syrup (100% pure)
1 serving of dark chocolate (best in heated porridge)
Chia seed porridge and pudding are healthy grain-free, high-fiber and filling substitutes for breakfast foods (cereal, oatmeal) or desserts (cookies, baked goods, ice cream, etc). To see if you are getting enough fiber in your diet, input your daily dietary intake into an app or website (similar to MyNetDiary) for 1-7 days and evaluate your daily fiber intake. For optimal wellness, disease prevention and weight management, the daily fiber recommendation ranges from 30-40g of fiber for adults. Chia seed porridge and pudding can be used to fill in your fiber needs, where your diet is lacking. As the case with all high-fiber diets, be sure to drink plenty of water to keep the bowels healthy and happy.
About the Lemon:
We are what we eat. Choosing vibrant and bright colors is thought to bring about similar characteristics to the human frame. Want to feel brighter and more vibrant on an energetic level? Then trying eating foods with similar characteristics, especially in the winter months when gloom sets in.
Lemon Water as a Health Tonic:
Drinking warm water with the juice of 1/4 - 1/2 of a lemon each morning can have a positive impact on health and wellness. Partly because of the constituents of the lemon, and partly because drinking warm lemon water can replace other unhealthy beverages. Listed below, are some of the benefits that I see in my practice among those who drink warm lemon water each morning or throughout the day:
8-16 oz of warm lemon water first thing in the morning can support the bowels and stimulate a bowel movement. Let's be honest, everyone loves to poop!
The acidity of lemons stimulates bile production and release from the liver and bile ducts, which is a necessary component of optimal digestion. Lemon also causes salivation, which is one of the earliest stages of digestion.
Absorption of Nutrients:
Lemons encourage optimal stomach acid production. Acid produced in the stomach is necessary to breakdown food matter into small enough molecules to be absorbed in the digestive process. Without adequate stomach acid production, nutrients from food and supplementation will remain too large to be absorbed and utilized by the body.
Promotes an Alkaline Environment:
Sure, it's no secret that lemons are acidic in nature. However, in the body, lemons and many other fruits and vegetables are actually considered to be alkaline-forming foods due to their mineral content and the effect they have on the body. Foods that are alkaline-forming are often rich in potassium and magnesium and may balance mineral-loss through the urine. In general, alkaline-forming foods are thought to be healthier choices to preserve bone health, reduce inflammation and prevent chronic illnesses.
Vitamin C is a natural antioxidant and is found abundantly in citrus fruits, including lemons. Vitamin C is necessary for many normal cellular reactions in the body and may beneficial in the following ways:
The amount of vitamin C found in 1/4-1/2 a lemon, as used in lemon water, does not satisfy the recommended daily intake for Vitamin C, but can contribute to totals consumed throughout the day.
My Overall Opinion of Lemon Water:
Try it! Water and lemons are both healthy for our body and are definitely worth a try! Drink warm water and lemon every morning or throughout the day.
*These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA, they are not intended to diagnose or treat disease.
By Dr. Danielle Schwaderer
Bone broth is a timeless nutrient-dense broth that has been used among many traditions for centuries. When prepared properly, bone broth is rich in vitamins, minerals, collagen, healthy fats and proteins. There are many health benefits to cooking and consuming bone broth, with the most notable being it's healing effects to the gut, immune system, skin and connective tissues (bone, blood, tendons, ligaments, etc). Many cultures consume bone broth as a wellness tonic or with ailments that effect the skin, gut, immune system, blood, and/or bones & joints. During the winter months (cold & flu season), having a supply of bone broth in the fridge or freezer is always a great idea.
Consuming Bone Broth:
Some sip, some use bone broth as soup stock. You can drink it as is or make a vegetable/meat soup.
Combine all ingredients in a stock pot or crockpot and heat at high heat until a low boil develops. Turn to low, cover, and slowly cook for 12-24 hours. Strain and keep the bone broth.
Blend until smooth and enjoy! My greens drinks are the perfect combo of protein, fat, fiber, and veggie-based carbohydrate. This is the one recommendation that I offer the majority of my patients who are looking to optimize their health and nutrition. Before taking away all of their favorite foods, I start by adding in more nutrition. Before no time, the standard American diet is no longer appealing. Just start with real nutritious foods people!
Cheers to health!
Sunday brunch! I get asked all the time by my patients "how do you suggest eating vegetables for breakfast?" Well....it looks a lot like this.
Minimum of 4 servings of straight veg in this meal, definitely 1/2 my plate in veggies. Never fear eating veggies for breakfast. It's our most important meal of the day, and should be the healthiest! No nasty standard american breakfasts allowed in my house. We eat real paleo-friendly foods full of color and life.
Today, I sautéed cabbage, chard stems, asparagus in coconut oil. Threw in some leftover roasted chicken. Served on a bed of chard greens and topped with a hard boiled egg. If this isn't real food, I don't know what is!
Added bonus: the chard and asparagus are homegrown!
To all of my patients, followers, friends: keep up the good work! Eating real food is more simple than it seems, you just have to be open minded. Happy Sunday!
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