Sunday, February 26, 2017

Contribution From Freelance Writer on Healthy Eating

I was SO thrilled when Jessica offered to right an article about the importance of healthy eating !  Jessica is a freelance health and food writer.   Her article also has links to some VERY interesting and informative articles.  Enjoy !

The No Nonsense Guide to Going Vegan Starting Today

It’s no secret that those who eat a vegetarian or even vegan diet have a tendency to live longer than their omnivorous counterparts. This tends to be due to the fact that the cooking process creates carcinogenic material in most types of meat, leading to esophageal and stomach cancers later in life, according to the WHO and the Cancer Council of New South Wales. Meat eaters also tend to have a higher body mass index due to the higher calories in animal flesh.

It should be clear to most that a vegetarian or vegan lifestyle is an objectively superior one. That is not to say that it is an easy one to adopt. Especially in later life, it can be tremendously difficult to improve your dietary habits, particularly if some unhealthy choices have taken root over many years. But, the sooner you start the sooner you can begin eradicating the negative consequences of animal consumption, according to the suggestive results of studies performed by Harvard University.

How to Go Vegan Today

While it would be ideal to go cold turkey off of animal products right now, for most people this simply isn’t realistic. Especially for the elderly, this could be quite the shock to the system. That is not to say that it is bad for you, quite the opposite in fact. It can simply cause intestinal upset and general irritability. Even so, this can be more than enough to convince many seniors that going vegan is bad for them and puts them off committing to this healthy lifestyle choice.

The key to starting and maintaining any major dietary shift like this is to begin slowly. The primary focus from the outset will be on the gradual elimination of animal products from your life. This can be as simple as switching from regular milk to soy.

The Joy of Substitution

Did you know that as a vegan, you can eat virtually anything you want to? This may not make sense at first, especially for someone that has been cooking for themselves for many years. After all, how can you possibly make a burger without the beef?

The key is to find recipes that allow you to substitute the animal products in your favourite foods with vegetable based options. For example, burgers can easily be constructed out of mixtures of mushroom, turnip, and other fleshy vegetables which taste virtually the same. They also have the added bonus of being far lower in calories and higher in micronutrients and antioxidants! 

Don’t expect to totally overhaul your diet overnight. Take the time to experiment, find the foods you enjoy, and take the journey as it comes. 

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Daniel Fast Cranberry Steel Cut Oat Muffins

The steel cut oats give the muffins a chewy texture.  As with all Daniel Fast muffins, since you can not use leavening agents (baking powder or baking soda),  they do not rise like "regular" muffins - resulting in a denser muffin.  These muffins are better the day after they are made.  Actually, I think ALL muffins taste better the day after they are made !!  

1 and 1/2 cups whole wheat flour (I use Bob's Red Mill Whole Wheat Flour )
1 cup Steel Cut Oats  (I use Bob's Red Mill)
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground allspice
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1 and 1/2 cups cranberries (I used dried - no sugar)
1 cup orange juice (no added sugar)
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce 
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 medium to large very ripe bananas, sliced
6 large dates (I use medjool dates)

Blend the orange juice, vanilla, bananas, and dates in a blender or food processor until smooth.  Pour mixture into bowl.

Mix the dry ingredients in another bowl.    

Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir just until the dry ingredients are moistened.  

Pour into muffin pan and bake at 350 degrees for about 20-25 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  

My favorite food processor is the  KitchenAid  7-Cup Food Processor

For blenders, I use both the  Vitamix Blender and Ninja Master Prep Professional Blender

I like using the silicone bakeware for my muffins.  The muffins  come out so easily and I don't need to grease the pan.  My favorites are:   Casabella Silicone Standard Muffin PanCasabella Silicone Large Muffin Pan, Casabella Jumbo Muffin Cups.

The OXO Large Scoop  is GREAT for scooping out batter into the muffin pan.  It is MUCH neater than when I used a spoon to scoop the batter into the pan - I no longer get batter all over the muffin pan !!!

Acknowledge that the Lord is God!  He made us, and we are his.  We are his people, the sheep of his pasture.
Psalm 100:3 (NLT)

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Lentils and Rice with Broccoli (DF,GF)

I put the broccoli in the rice cooker but if you want the broccoli firmer, cook the broccoli by itself and add to the rice after the rice is cooked. 

1 cup dry brown rice (I used brown rice and wild rice)
1 can lentils, with liquid 
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground coriander
1 onion, chopped
1 tsp minced jar garlic
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 cup water
1 12-oz package frozen broccoli
1/4 cup shelled pistachios

Place all ingredients in a rice cooker and cook until done.  Stir in pistachios after the rice is cooked.

I really like the Rival 6-cup Rice Cooker w/Steamer.   It makes cooking rice SOOO easy.  I just put all the ingredients in the cooker .  So my rice dish is complete with spices and veggies when the rice is cooked.  The 6 cup isn't a big rice cooker, but it is plenty for 2 people.  

Worship the Lord with gladness.  Come before him, singing with joy.
Psalm 100:2 (NLT)