Dangers of Keto Diet

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I’ve talked about this before but it’s really important to remember how truly unique each of us are. From our personalities, to our looks to how our bodies react to foods, especially diets. A little over a year ago, I gave the Keto Diet a try for 15 days. But it didn’t agree with my body. I ended up losing weight but not fat. When I went back to eating my normal diet, which is vegan and I reintroduced the carbs, I put the weight back on and then some.

I came across some people who loved the Keto Diet so much that they stayed on it for a long time. But what most people don’t know, is the Keto Diet was designed to be followed for short periods of time. This is a diet of high fat. Even though some say it’s the good kind of fat, bottom line is fat is still fat. And too much of anything will take a toll on your body.

Long story short, by staying on the Keto for a long period of time, the people I spoke with developed serious health issues and were told to get off of the diet. The adverse affects of prolonged Keto Dieting is dangerous and include:

  • Hepatic Steatosis (fatty liver disease)
  • Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar)
  • Kidney Stones
  • Hypoproteinemia (abnormally low protein)
  • Keto Flu (symptoms mimicking a cold flu)
  • Rapidly Increased Cholesterol Levels
  • Vitamin & Mineral Deficiencies
  • Dehydration

Also keep in mind if you already have pre-existing health conditions you very well could make these worse or add more complications to your list. So please always consult with a doctor before and during major dietary changes so you can monitor your progress and avoid any serious adverse affects.

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“Every human being is the author is his own health or disease.” ~Buddha

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Thoughtful Thursday Tamanu Oil

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I got an order in from Shea Terra Oragnics and in that package I received a sample of tamanu oil. I had never heard of it before so I decided to do a little research. Tamanu oil is made from the seeds of the tamanu tree which can be found in Africa, Asia and Australia. It has been used in Asian cultures for centuries but in the West, we’re just hearing about this beneficial oil.

It’s a fatty oil that’s pressed from the seeds of the tree and is a greenish/yellow color. The oil is rich in fatty acids including alpha-linoleic, oleic, linoleic, palmitic, arachidonic and stearic. It also contains polyphenols which are anti-inflammatory. All of these compounds are excellent for the skin.

This fatty nut oil contains antioxidants that fight radical damage making it great for the skin. Because of it’s antibacterial properties it’s helpful in treating fungal and wound infections as well as acne and eczema. Plus it helps to relieve joint pain, provide light sun protection and speed up the healing of wounds.

This all sounds pretty amazing but despite it’s many anti-aging properties, it should never be taken internally as the oil is poisonous. Also, if you suffer from nut allergies, this oil does come from a nut so you probably should stay away from it.

This is a rich oil, so a little goes a long way. I like to use a drop or two of the oil on my face. It does wonders in minimizing aging and makes my complexion look great! Plus all the fatty acids in the oil make it an excellent moisturizer.

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“To the mind that is still the whole universe surrenders.” ~Lao Tzu

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Thoughtful Thursday Juicing

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Most of us abuse our bodies for years with bad eating habits before an illness shows up. Once it does we chalk it up to “it’s a part of aging.” But I highly disagree. I’ve seen friends and family make dietary changes and either improve their condition or cure the illness completely. I have also experienced these changes.

Juicing is an easy way to supplement your present diet with lots of vitamins and minerals that you normally wouldn’t eat especially if fruits and veggies aren’t your favorite. I can tell you that the juice recipes today are quite delicious and filling and have come a long way since yesteryear. I replaced 1 meal a day with 2 glasses of fresh juice. Depending on what’s in the recipe, I might use the blender or the juicer. The main difference is the blender uses everything you put in while the juicer extracts the juice and discards the pulp or fiber.

I feel my best when I include fresh juices in my diet. When I first started I noticed a lot of changes. I had lots of energy. The brain fog that I didn’t even know I had was gone. Plus all the aches and pains I felt had disappeared. I felt fantastic!

You don’t need to make radical changes to your diet, but at least modify it somewhat and add in fresh vitamins and minerals with juicing. Taking a vitamin may help improve things but it doesn’t come close to fresh nutrients. There are lots of books on juicing but one of my favorites is “The Healthy Green Drink Diet” by Jason Manheim which is available on amazon.

Hope this inspires you to great health!

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“Health is the greatest blessing of human beings.’ ~Hippocrates

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Thoughtful Thursday Uniquely You

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There are 7.9 billion people living on our beautiful planet. Out of those 7.9 billion, there is only 1 UNIQUE You! I’m currently reading the “The Inflammation Spectrum” by Dr. Will Cole and to be honest, I never realized how truly unique each of us are.

I always thought I was an oddball because of how I react to my environment and to food. But as it turns out, everyone is completely unique. That’s why a certain diet will work for your friend and they’ll lose 20 pounds, while you’ll struggle to lose 1 even though your both eating the same things. A medication may have no side affects for one person, while the other will experience multiple side affects.

Dr. Cole explains in his book that just about every health issue we face like anxiety, depression, fatigue, diabetes, digestive issues, heart disease, hormone imbalances, autoimmune disorders and more are inflammatory in nature or have an inflammatory component. The trick is to determine what is causing it. Dr. Cole explains how to determine what works for you and what doesn’t in order to create a custom diet that is tailored specifically to you.

This sounds like a complicated process but it really isn’t as hard as you think. I will say that I was surprised at some of the foods that tend to lead to inflammation. The majority of us suffer from one ailment or another so I recommend reading his book and giving it a try, you’ll be amazed at what you learn about yourself. I’ll also keep you posted on how I’m progressing, so stay tuned.

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“When diet is wrong, medicine is of no use. When diet is correct, medicine is of no need.” Ayurvedic Proverb

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Thoughtful Thursday Growing Microgreens

Last month I wrote a post about the Benefits of Microgreens. Today I’m writing about growing them. I looked up a few tutorials online and decided to start with a kit to see if I liked growing and eating them.

I purchased a small kit made by Back to the Roots. It’s an organic microgreens kit that comes with 2 compostable growing trays, 2 seed packets and 2 expandable soil discs. It was very easy to use. You start by placing the soil disc in the tray and add water. Wait about minute and allow the disc to expand. Then spread the soil in the tray and sprinkle the seeds on top. Cover the tray and let the seeds germinate. After about 2 days the seeds are sprouting and you can remove the lid and just add a little water everyday. That’s it! Within one week I had these delicious microgreens.

The one thing to note is this is a compostable tray that has the potential to leak which can damage surfaces. To be on the safe side I kept my tray on a trivet with a paper towel underneath and it was perfectly fine. It never leaked or got damp.

I used a pair of shears to cut my microgreens at the base and added them to my salad. They tasted absolutely delicious! They’re super easy to grow and super healthy for your body. You can buy a set of 3 kits on Amazon or a single kit from Target. I highly recommend giving them a try.

Hope this inspires you to enjoy a healthy lifestyle. Thanks for stopping by!!!

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“Growing your own food is like printing money.” ~Unknown

Thoughtful Thursday Benefits of Microgreens

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Previously I wrote a post about homegrown Alfalfa Sprouts which are excellent for your health. But microgreens are different from sprouts, the most obvious being they are grown in soil where sprouts are grown in water. Another difference is sprouts are ready to be eaten in 5-7 days while microgreens are ready in about 2 weeks.

When eating sprouts you’re eating the entire plant and microgreen are cut near the soil so you only eat the stem and leaves. Microgreens are a powerhouse of nutrition because they pretty much contain all the nutrients of a mature plant but in a highly concentrated form.

Depending on the type of microgreens you grow, they’ll have higher levels of the following nutrients:

  • Iron
  • Zinc
  • Magnesium
  • Copper
  • Polyphenols
  • Antioxidants
  • Vitamin C
  • Calcium
  • Vitamin A
  • Folate
  • Protein
  • Fiber 
  • B Vitamins

These small plants are full of antioxidants, beneficial vitamins and minerals. They help protect the body from heart disease, alzheimer’s, cancer, diabetes, they boost the immune system and brain function, protect your eyes and bones, aid in weight loss, prevent anemia and more.

Microgreens are easy to grow and can be grown year round. There are many types of microgreens that you can grow like arugula, beets, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, chard, quinoa, radish, spinach and watercress to name a few. Plus growing your own microgreens is the best way to keep them fresh longer but they’re also available in stores. Either way it’s a win win to improve your health!

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“To keep the body healthy is a duty, otherwise we shall not be able to keep our mind strong and clear.” ~ Buddha

Thoughtful Thursday Best-ever Beefless Stew

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With the cooler temps finally here in the South, I wanted to try a new vegan soup recipe. But I wanted something really hearty that would be filling and I found it. This is a recipe for “Best-ever Beefless Stew” with portobello mushrooms taking the place of beef. If you’re not a fan of portobellos, I’m sure you could use another type of mushroom that would taste just as good.

I gotta say this was one of the most delicious and satisfying stews I’ve ever had! A few things I would change to the recipe is to add a little salt and pepper to taste and it also calls for fresh parsley as a topping. But I wasn’t too crazy with flavor of the parsley with the stew. I would recommend giving it a try anyways and see for yourself, you may end up liking it.

This recipe was published in the latest Forks Over Knives, “100 Best Plant-Based Recipes,” 2021 and it can also be found on their website “Best-ever Beefless Stew.” It was really easy to make with everyday ingredients.

Forks Over Knives  100 Best Plant-Based Recipes  2021 image 0

If you’re interested in purchasing a copy of this issue, it’s available on the Forks Over Knives Website.

Hope you’ll give this tasty recipe a try 😊

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“Health is the first form of Wealth. Invest in yours by eating whole, unprocessed foods.” ~ Dr. Axe

Thoughtful Thursday – Spaghetti Squash

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With autumn here, squash and pumpkins are in season! Spaghetti squash is one of my favorites this time of year. It’s a round/oval shaped yellow squash that can be light in color or a little more orange. It’s loaded with vitamins and minerals and is low in calories. It’s also a good source of Vitamin C, maganese and Vitamin B6.

1 Cup Cooked Spaghetti Squash contains about:

  • Calories: 42
  • Carbs: 10 grams
  • Fiber: 2.2 grams
  • Protein: 1 gram
  • Fat: 0.5 grams
  • Vitamin C: 9% of the Reference Daily Intake (RDI)
  • Manganese: 8% of the RDI
  • Vitamin B6: 8% of the RDI
  • Pantothenic acid: 6% of the RDI
  • Niacin: 6% of the RDI
  • Potassium: 5% of the RDI

Instead of eating traditional spaghetti that’s loaded with carbs and can be fattening, try making some spaghetti squash. It’s fairly easy to make and quite delicious. Although I must warn you, that cutting the spaghetti squash can be a little hard so be careful and use a sharp knife.

Recipe:

  • Cut the ends off the spaghetti squash and cut in half lengthwise.
  • Remove the seeds with a spoon.
  • Fill a shallow pan with about 1/4″ inch of water.
  • Place the spaghetti squash in the water, cut side down.
  • Bake in oven at 400 ̊F for 45 minutes or until the squash can be easily pierced with a fork. 
  • Once it’s cool enough to handle, gently scrape the inside flesh with a fork lengthwise to separate the spaghetti like strands but be careful not to break the outer shell.
  • Sprinkle with a little salt and pepper, if desired and serve with marinara sauce.

You can serve spaghetti squash in a variety of ways by adding different veggies, navy beans, chick peas or anything else that you like to eat. There are plenty of recipes online to get you started. So why not try something new and healthy too! You may be pleasantly surprised.

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“Every human being is the author of his own health or disease.” ~Buddha

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Thoughtful Thursday Homegrown Alfalfa Sprouts

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Alfalfa sprouts are mild flavored and very nutritious to eat. Studies have shown they are a high anti-oxidant, anti-aging food source. These little sprouts can help fight cancer, lower cholesterol and diabetes, prevent osteoporosis and more.

I used to buy fresh living alfalfa sprouts at my local grocery store but sadly they stopped carrying them. So I decided the freshest and safest way to get them was to grow them myself. I’ve tried several sprouting trays and they don’t always produce the best results.

Getting frustrated, I decided to go back to basics and try using a large, wide mouth mason jar with a sprouting lid. This is working beautifully and is very easy. I only need 1 Tbsp of seeds and in about 4 days, I have fresh organic alfalfa sprouts that are delicious and crisp. The sprouts can be stored in the fridge for about 4-6 days.

Alfalfa Sprouts taste great on salads, sandwiches, in smoothies and anything else you can think of. Below are instructions to grow your own spouts and links to Amazon.com for the supplies.

Instructions to Grow your own Sprouts:

  1. Fill a wide mouth mason jar with 2 cups of cool, fresh water and add 1 Tbsp of High Mowing Organic Alfalfa Seeds (I’ve had good results with this brand, the seeds are sourced in the United States). Cap the jar with a sprouting lid and soak the seeds for 8 hours. Then drain and rinse the seeds keeping the lid on. Store the jar upside down, in a bowl, at an angle so water can continue to drain.
  2. Rinse and drain the seeds with the lid on once in the morning and once at night. And again store the jar upside down, in a bowl, at an angle.
  3. Repeat step 2, everyday for about 4 days until your sprouts are ready.
  4. On the last day, depending on the light in your kitchen, you may want to move the grown sprouts to a window where they can get indirect sunlight to make them a little more green. You only need to keep them there for a few hours and then store them in fridge until you’re ready to eat them (also, I rinse the seeds before eating to remove the hulls).

I hope this inspires you in some way!

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Below are links to Amazon.com for the supplies:

High Mowing Organic Alfalfa Seeds

High Mowing Seed Sprouting Jar Lid

Wide Mouth Mason Jar

“Those who think they have not time for healthy eating, will sooner or later have to find time for illness.” ~Unknown

Thoughtful Thursday – ALT Sandwich

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One of my favorite sandwiches used to be the BLT (bacon, lettuce, tomato). But now that I’ve gone vegan, those sandwiches are off the menu. Years ago I tried avocados. I wasn’t too crazy about them because they have a bit of a bland flavor but that can be a good thing.

The other day I wanted to make a really good sandwich and thought I’d try an ALT, avocado, lettuce and tomato. I was pleasantly surprised at how good it tasted and satisfied my hunger. It was even easier to make than a BLT because I didn’t have to cook the bacon. Plus I felt great after eating it.

I simply used 2 slices of Ezekiel bread, lightly toasted and spread with vegan mayonnaise. Then I added the avocado slices, lettuce, tomato and a little Himalayan sea salt. Voila! I had a delicious, healthy, satisfying sandwich!

Thanks for stopping by and hope you give this a try!

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“Health is not about the weight you lose, but about the life you gain.” ~Dr. Josh Axe

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