"...what a person accomplishes in life is directly correlated with the people around them." - John Berardi

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

10 Simple Steps to a Whole Food Lifestyle (Part 9)

I can't believe we are at Step 9! We are so close and that is awesome! I hope you found the prioritized list of kitchen tools helpful. There are a number of other cool tools I wanted to list but I think that was definitely a good list to consider.

Today we are really going to start stretching you a little bit... Are you excited? Some of the things I am going to address may or may not be familiar to you. Everyone's exposure to these foods is definitely going to vary. It's funny though, because the more I learn, the more I am amazed at the wisdom of people who came before us. It seems like many of the things that "grandma used to do..." while cooking were kind of joked about. Maybe she knew something that we didn't...

The foods we are going to cover are some of the secrets to a healthier gut, stronger immune system, better skin, and minimizing nutrient deficiencies. These foods are going to really take your whole food lifestyle to the next level because of the healing they do for the body and the amount of nutrition they provide. 

And the good news... they are generally really cheap to get/make!

Bone Broth

Would you (and your family) like to be healthier, especially during the colder months? Make & eat some bone broth regularly! It really is a superfood powerhouse! I love how it gives soups a "richer" flavor when made with bone broth. I did a post earlier on how to make it. You can also find a grass-fed bone broth on Thrive

Here are my favorite soups to make with bone broth:

  • Zuppa Toscana - My cute little toddler loves soup and he whoofs this one down every time. He also eats the "green" in it when I use spinach in place of kale. Win for mom!
  • Butternut Squash Soup - My husband calls it "liquid gold" and says it's like "drinking health" every time I make it!
  • Vegetable Beef Stew - I haven't posted a recipe for this yet but I make mine by throwing in chopped carrots, peas, diced onion, mined garlic, tomato paste, stew meat, thyme, salt, and pepper into the crockpot, on low, all day. It is so good, and so rich with the bone broth in place of plain water. 

Fermented Foods

With the amount of refined foods, sugar, grains, and antibiotics & medications (that are taken like candy these days), there are a lot of people who are suffering from what is called "leaky gut." Basically, your gut lining becomes more permeable so that toxic things inside are getting into the gut and absorbing the good nutrients we do eat becomes very difficult. Bone broth is very helpful in healing leaky gut as well as adding in some probiotics through fermented foods. Read more about it here

When you start incorporating fermented foods into your diet, I can pretty much guarantee you will notice improvement in your health. It really is amazing. Check these out:
  • Sauerkraut - All you need is cabbage and salt, and it is super easy to make. If you want to buy sauerkraut, make sure there isn't anything other than cabbage and salt in the ingredients.  
  • Kimchi -  I haven't had a lot of Kimchi but here is a recipe if you would like to make some. 
  • Pickled Veggies - Practically any veggies will work. My favorites to "pickle" are cauliflower and carrots. Here is a simple way to make them, along with some other ideas.
  • Water Kefir - The probiotic content isn't as high as with some of the others listed here but can be a good option to replace some of the common fizzy, sugar-filled drinks out there. Here's my recipe on how to make it.  
  • Kombucha - It is basically fermented tea that needs a scoby and is also very cheap to make. Check out the how-to here
Organ Meats

This one will probably take longer to get used to eating, but before you freak out on me, hear me out. If you are going to eat organ meats, make sure it is coming from a healthy animal (pasture-raised, that sort of thing). Of course, I prefer that you always try to get quality sources of protein. Luckily, organ meats are packed with nutrition and a little goes a long way. Here are some ideas of ways you could start introducing liver into your diet:

There are some pretty helpful books out there like Beyond Bacon, that give ideas on how to eat an animal from head to tail. There are also numerous blog posts on how to incorporate organ meats into your diet with recipes included. Keep trying different recipes out until you find some that taste the best to you!

Keep me posted on your progress on this one! See you for the final, Step 10!