Plan to be healthy

healthyyouWe make new year’s resolutions, we commit to losing weight or getting healthier, but then it all seems to fall by the wayside and we are back into our comfortable settings, eating convenience foods or food like substances as I call them. Getting healthy can be daunting. But anything worth doing is worth doing right. You don’t have to do it in a day either. It is all about one step at a time, making small changes every day or every week so it becomes a habit to be healthy.

  • Get busy in your kitchen – Cooking doesn’t have to take long and can be a wonderful experience if you are doing it with loved ones. We all have to eat right? Teaching children how to cook will help them make healthy habits.  There are lots of healthy meals that can be prepared and ready in as little as 30 min. Find some great recipes on our recipe page.
  • Organize your pantry – Get in there and toss the junk! Go thru everything. Can you read what’s on the label? If you can’t it is not healthy for you. Stock your pantry with staples, whole grains, beans, nuts and lentils. If you can see the junk food it can stimulate cravings so get rid of it or at the very least hide it somewhere out of site until you are ready to treat yourself.
  • Use smaller plates– plate sizes are increasing. When you are filling your plate check it’s size, if you put less on your plate you will eat less. Also if you fill your plate and then sit down instead of having food within reach it will give you pause before you eat again resulting in knowing if you are full, therefore reducing your intake.
  • What’s in your fridge- Fill your fridge with healthy food. Fill your crispers with lots of colourful veg! If you find that you are not using all of the veg in a week, then it is time to make soup or blanch and freeze your extras so that you always have some veg on hand. If you have meal items on hand you are less likely to eat out or find something “convenient”
  • Along the outside- The next time you need to grocery shop i would hope you wouldn’t go the traditional grocery store, but if that is where you find yourself go only to the outside perimeter of the store. This is where the organic and less likely to kill you food is. haha
  • Chew slowly- pacing how fast you eat helps your body to register when you are full. So go ahead a savour your food instead of gobbling it down. this will aid in better digestion and mindful eating.
  • Turn off the TV- mindlessly eating in front of the tv or any screen is going to lead to poor food consumption and choices. Making food together can be bonding and eating together can lead to conversation!
  • Increase your vegetable intake- vegetables are the best way to protect your heart and body against obesity. You can add them to omelets, baked goods, pasta and of course smoothies! You can even substitute pasta for spaghetti squash or zucchini ribbons. Find some fabulous recipes here.
  • Keep temptation to a minimum- the closer you are to the crap the more likely you are to eat it. Keep it hidden or better yet don’t bring it into your home.
  • Eat healthy fats– Switch out your unhealthy fats for healthy ones. It is easy to swap your butter for coconut oil or avocado. We need fats in our diet to help absorb our fat soluble vitamins.
  • Bye bye sugar– You know by now that white refined anything is bad for you… white refined sugar will kill you. Cut it out! Stick to natural sugars found in fruits and veg.
  • Cayenne pepper- if you are not eating this, you should be. Not only does this boost your metabolism but can cut sweet, fatty and salty food cravings. Sprinkle it everywhere.

It is okay to treat yourself once in awhile, but if you want to start your healthy lifestyle then find a way to do each of these things everyday. Like I said, you don’t have to do it all in one day but plan to be healthy and one step at a time you will suddenly find a more vibrant you!

 

3 Natural Antibiotics that you can grow in your Vibrant garden!

I don’t know about you but I find it is scary knowing that there are antibiotic resistant super bugs out there. Today i am going to look at what kind of natural antibiotics we can use to help us when we are sick. After all, as Hippocrates said,  “let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.”

GarlicGarlic

Even though garlic is such small vegetable, it packs a huge punch when it comes to antibiotic properties. Garlic also transforms meals into a aromatic, bold and healthy experiences. I have even eaten garlic in ice cream… and it was delicious!

Garlic is a “bulb,” it is a couple of inches in height and diameter and has numerous small separate cloves. You can plant garlic cloves in the fall and cover with straw and it will come up in the spring, it will spiral around and produce beautiful scapes that garlic-scapescan be eaten just like the garlic itself.

When garlic is crushed, chewed or chopped it allows the sulfur containing compounds to mix and create a new compound called allicin. Allicin is very valuable in terms of health benefits. It has been associated with having antibacterial and anticancer properties, along with cardiovascular benefits.

Crushing the garlic and allowing it to sit for 5 – 10 minutes will allow the compounds to interact and create the valuable allicin.

You can purchase dried, powdered and fresh garlic in markets throughout the year, however, fresh is best! And if you are growing it yourself, bundling it and hanging it in a cool spot, it will keep for the year until your new crop sprouts up in the spring!

Echinacea_Prairie_SplendorEchinacea

This is a popular wildflower and garden plant, the purple coneflower as it is also known as, is also a popular herbal products. It has been used to prevent and treat the colds,  influenza and infections. Echinacea is one of the most researched of immunostimulants.

It was also one of the most popular herbs used by Native American Indians. They used Echinacea for coughs, colds, sore throats, infections, inflammations, tonsillitis and toothaches just to name a few.

Some people can experience an allergic reaction to echinacea if they are already allergic to ragweed, chrysanthemums, marigolds or any other members of the daisy family.   

You can also grow this in your vibrant garden and harvest it to make teas, tinctures and compresses.

 

Oregano_02Oregano and the oil of oregano

Oregano… not just a spice for tomato sauce and pizza. This versatile herb has long been used as a medicine as well.

It has been used for respiratory disorders like coughs, asthma and bronchitis. It has also been used to treat gastrointestinal disorders like heartburn and bloating. Other uses include treating menstrual cramps, urinary tract infections and headaches.

Amazing right? Well that is not all!

Oil of oregano is a staple in my medicine cabinet. It is known to be taken orally for parasites, allergies, sinus pain colds and flu. Just a few drops under your tongue is usually enough to do the trick.

The oil can also be used topically to relieve the itch of insect and spider bites as well as to relieve athlete’s’ foot, canker sores and dandruff.  I like to mix it in carrier oil for massages to relieve muscle pain.

All of this and you can grow it in your own backyard! In the fall you can trim it, bundle it and let it dry, then store it in a glass container to have on hand throughout the winter season!

A beautiful healthy healing broth

I am a firm believer in that food is the best medicine. This is a broth from Henry G. Bieler who was a prominent American physician and author who wrote, “Food is Your Best Medicine”. In his book he advocates for the treatment of disease with foods.

This is a gentle way to detox either on it’s own or as a compliment to your juice fast.

Ingredients

  • 4 medium  or two large zucchinis, chopped
  • 3 cups string beans
  • 2 sticks celery
  • 2 bunches of parsley
  • 1 litre filtered water
  • sea salt
  • (optional) ghee

Preparation

Place water,  chopped zucchini, string beans, ends removed and chopped celery in a stock pot.

Bring to a boil, turn down the temperature and then simmer for approximately 30 minutes or until vegetables are softened but not over cooked.  Pour the mixture into a blender, add some parsley and blend. The liquid will be quite hot so be sure to hold onto the lid.

This batch of broth will create several blender batches. Have some jars or other containers on hand to fill as you blend. To thicken and enhance the broth add ghee.

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