It started with a 30-day raw food experiment. Immediately, I noticed I had more energy, more motivation to exercise, really good sleep, and I became committed to living a more healthy lifestyle. After several months, I also experienced some challenges--digestion issues, low energy at times, food allergies, and a few other things.

Looking back over the last two years, I realize I have evolved. I've learned so much about healthy eating, about new and different ingredients, what works for me and what doesn't. My tastes have changed. The bottom line is that you have to figure out what works for you and that may take some experimentation and some time. It will be worth it in the end to have all of the benefits of improved health!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Banana Green Refresher

This is an extremely easy recipe, and after trying it somewhat on faith, was surprised at how delicious and refreshing it is. The hubby liked it, daughter #1 even licked her lips, which are two signs of success!

Serves 1

1 large banana
Handful of fresh parsley (mostly leaves, but a little stem is ok)
1 to 1 1/2 cups cold water
A few ice cubes

Blend all til smooth. Very light and refreshing for a snack or to get you going in the morning. Gorgeous green color, too.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Chocolate Banana Shake

I have really come to love my organic raw cacao powder. I am just starting to experiment with it, as you saw in my hot cacao recipe earlier. Here is a very simple shake (or smoothie) you can whip up quickly--the banana gives it a rich, thick texture, and the cacao satisfies your chocolate cravings. You can use almond milk instead of water--I had used the last of mine, so just used water and it was still delicious. Kids love it, too.

Serves 2-3

2 Large Bananas
2 Tablespoons of Raw Cacao Powder (or to taste)
2 Cups of cold water
1-2 T Agave or sweetener of choice, to taste

Whirl all together in blender til smooth and creamy. Drink with straw!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Michael Pollan's New 'Food Rules': 64 Easy Steps to Better Health

I am a Michael Pollan fan, and he has a new book out where he discusses 64 new food rules to help Americans move toward eating more healthily. Here's an article Michael wrote to give a little taste of his new book and a few of these rules--


Monday, January 11, 2010

Winter Salad

Here's a tasty salad I've been having for lunch, and have made different versions of this for the last few weeks. It is very versatile, so feel free to change the greens, the fruit, etc, for a fresh and healthful meal.

Salad greens to fill a bowl or plate (I used romaine and added a bit of chopped kale)
1/2 of a ripe pear, cut in small pieces (crisp apple works well, too)
2T dried cranberries
2-3 T chopped pecans
Half a lemon
Olive oil
Sprinkle of Himalayan salt

Toss the greens, fruit and pecans together, squeeze nearly half a lemon over all, or to taste. Drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and freshly ground pepper. For the other half of the pear, I sliced it and smeared some cashew cheez on it--very scrumptious!! I used the recipe for the cheez from Rawmazing's site--a great source of recipes.

Raw Hot Cacao

With our temps so cold in Ohio lately, this delicious warm beverage is very comforting. I accidentally spilled the first cup but the teaspoon left in the mug was so good I had to make another! Really creamy and foamy if you use an immersion blender!

1 cup or so of almond milk (1 c raw almonds to about 3 cups water, blend, strain)
1-2 tsp raw cacao powder
Pinch Himalayan salt
2-3 tsp agave (or sweeten to taste)
Dash vanilla flavoring

Heat the almond milk in a saucepan over low heat and keep dipping your clean finger in to make sure it doesn't get hot, just warmed. Stir in the remaining ingredients, and pour it into a large mug (the cacao might not all dissolve). Set the immersion blender inside the mug (make sure it's big/tall enough to do this), turning it on low for a few seconds to whirl it up. Great foam, just like hot chocolate! Enjoy this treat.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Favorite Green (Blue) Smoothie

Thought I'd share one of my favorite morning green smoothie recipes. Smoothies are a great way to get an early dose of greens plus some fruit. If you want to introduce kids to smoothies, you might want to go easy on the amount of greens at first and gradually increase what you think they'll accept. Most mornings, I start my day with a green fruit smoothie, and here's my latest fave.

1 cup frozen blueberries (wild if possible)
Couple handfulls of greens (red kale works well and keeps the color bluish-purplish)
Half a banana or some pineapple chunks
Agave to taste
1-2 cups of water

Whirl all in a blender til smooth. In winter, I warm the water before adding. Drink up enjoy!