Tag Archives: vegetables

Cleanse Day 1: by Meg

Each day of the cleanse, one participant will share how the “experiment”  is going so far for them.  We encourage you to use these daily messages as a source of inspiration, encouragement, laughter and community as we all learn more about how different behaviors and  foods affect our bodies, minds and spirits.   Please comment on the posts with your thoughts and experiences as well — the more sharing the better!
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by Meg O'Connell

by Meg O’Connell

I moved into my cleanse with a ‘passing of the torch’ so to speak, the night before!

Last and first sips!

Last and first sips!

I poured an Epsom Salt Bath and I brought the last few sips of my glass of wine and a cup of my hot water with lemon along with me.   I was ready to begin the next 7 days.

'Cranberry Cocktail' prep

‘Cranberry Cocktail’ prep

I woke up and heated my water through my Keurig, so it felt familiar.  I scrambled to get food in me within an hour of waking up, I think I was 10 minutes late, which was pretty good considering I had to get three kids to school solo!

Yummy snack

Yummy snack

At the end of day one, I feel like I can do this!  I didn’t have a caffeine headache, although I was a bit tired at times.  The meals weren’t as hard as trying to figure out that go-to snack.  I am known for grabbing one of the kids’ cheese sticks to get me through, so what did I do…roasted some broccoli and cauliflower, that my youngest ate half of…it was yummy!  I picked up more almonds and nuts at the store today, so I don’t have to spend the time preparing snacks for the rest of the week.

I did miss that little bite of salted chocolate caramel after the kids went to bed and I hope that gets easier because even the cookies as the mall looked good to me today!

So tempting…

I feel confident that I can make it through the week and excited to see how the body changes with each day with all of this apple cider vinegar, lemon and cranberry!

Butternut Squash: The Perfect Fall Immunity & Energy Booster

butternut Maple-Roasted-Butternut-Squash-640x480

Did you know that just 1 cup of butternut squash contains 1/3 of your daily amount of vitamin C? And, if you are struggling with your energy levels, butternut squash is an excellant choice for blood sugar regulation. It’s also loaded with anti-oxidants which help reduce imflammation (helping to fight diseases like cancer and helping you look & feel young).

The most simple way to cook this autumn squash is by roasting, which consists of three simple steps:

  1. Slice the butternut squash into ½ inch thick half moon slices, or peel and dice the squash.
  2. Toss it with some olive oil, honey & cinnamon
  3. Roast at 400 F for 35 to 40 minutes.

Enjoy!

 

OTHER GREAT HEALTHY RECIPES:

Eating Organic: Why, Which Foods & Money Saving Tips

About Neissa

by Neissa Springmann

There’s no doubt that ‘organic’ is a buzz word for 2013, and in a perfect world everyone would love to afford an organic-only diet. However, with the cost of food on the rise and the reality that a large majority of the population is on a budget, eating entirely organic is virtually impossible! Let’s face it, a recent college graduate or mother shopping for a family of four is most likely to purchase four non-organic apples for $1, rather than four organic apples for $4.00. With that said, there are particular foods that are very important to eat organic, and rather than give up on eating organic all together, we thought it would be helpful to provide you with why it is important to eat organic, what produce is important to eat organic and a few cost saving tips too.

When produce shopping, a good rule of ‘organic thumb’ is: if the fruit or veggie has an edible skin, buy organic. The reason is that organic farming excludes and strictly limits the use of manufactured (synthetic) fertilizers, pesticides (which include herbicides, insecticides, and fungicides), plant growth regulators (such as hormones), livestock antibiotics, food additives, genetically modified organisms, human sewage and nano-materials. Therefore, if your produce has a thick and non-edible skin, your fruit or veggie is more protected from the potentially harmful chemicals — unlike the produce with edible skin that has no protection. And, because we are what we eat, when eating non-organic produce we must assume that our body is also ingesting those same synthetic fertilizers, pesticides, hormones, etc.

Try to Buy These Organic: 

  • Apples, Grapes, Strawberries, Berries, Peaches, Apricots, Pears, Cherries, Carrots, Celery, Broccoli, Lettuce, Spinach, Kale, Greens, Peppers, Tomatoes, Cauliflower, Cabbage Squash, Green Beans, Cucumber, Potatoes

Not as Important to Buy Organic: 

  • Watermelon, Cantaloupe, Mango, Oranges, Bananas, Kiwi, Honeydew, Acorn & Butternut Squash, Pumpkin, Avocado, Onion, Corn, Peas

Save some $$!

Finally, there’s nothing worse than spending money on organic produce, to then find it molded and have gone bad in the refrigerator only a few days after purchasing it! On one hand, this is a good sign, as the natural aging process (without chemicals, etc.) is in play. But dang! That’s money down the drain! Therefore, when applicable buy your organic produce frozen (especially if you make smoothies, which is a great way to cool off in the summer and get your fruit and veggie servings for the day) or freeze it upon purchase. This does not diminish the vitamin or mineral content of the fruit or veggie and will save big money!

Furthermore, Costco Wholesale also has incredible deals on frozen organic blueberries and other seasonal produce. Also, subscribe to the Whole Foods mailing list. Very often they have cost-saving sales, like a pint of organic blueberries for $1.99! Finally, if you live in Texas, HEB has an excellent and affordable organic section.

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Gardening 101: What to Plant in April

Garden

In honor of the approaching Earth Day (Monday, April 22 if you’re curious), we’d like to touch on the beauty of growing your own veggies, fruits and herbs. If you’re at all like me, the idea has always sounded appealing, but I have yet to actually jump in and take a stab at it. I think mainly because I just plain haven’t made the effort to learn anything about it!  So, now — a chance to get informed. Not sure what to plant?  The county and the all-knowing internet has made finding this out pretty easy for us, providing calendars of ‘what to plant when’ online.

So what’s on the list for planting in April in Travis County?

Between April 1 & April 15, plant:

  • Lima Beans
  • Snap Beans
  • Beets
  • Cantaloupe
  • Chard
  • Sweet Corn
  • Cucumbers
  • Eggplant
  • Okra
  • Black-eye Peas
  • Pepper Plants
  • Pumpkin
  • Radishes
  • New Zealand Spinach
  • Summer Squash
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Tomato Plants
  • Watermelon

Between April 15 & April 30, plant:

  • Lima Beans
  • Snap Beans
  • Beets
  • Chard
  • Okra
  • Black-eye Peas
  • Pepper Plants
  • New Zealand Spinach
  • Summer Squash
  • Sweet Potatoes

For a full list and endless additional resources for gardening in Travis County, visit http://www.co.travis.tx.us/agext/garden/veggies/planting/aprjun.asp

Not in Travis County? Check out your county’s .gov website for resources specific to your region.

Go ahead, give it a go — and let us know how it turns out for you.  Happy planting, and happy early Earth Day!

 

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