Saturday, September 28, 2013

Today is the first day of my blog and it’s a real doozy.  While in the grocery store the other day I started noticing what people were putting in their carts and the relationship between the products and the way the people looked. 
          The ones that had fresh vegetable, fruits, meats, dairy, cheeses, in other words, real food, seemed to me to be slimmer, brighter (you know that bright eyed, bushy tailed look).  They just looked better.
          The ones with 3 loaves of white bread, hot dog buns, hamburger buns, (doesn’t matter if it’s whole wheat or white), no fresh anything except a bag of white potatoes, and to top it all off frozen dinners.  You know the ones, Lean Cuisine, Weight Watchers, frozen pizza, frozen lasagna, frozen vegetables with all that artificial sauce, then potato chips, cheetos, fritos.  Not to mention all the carbonated soft drinks and BEER!!!  YUCK!!!
          These are the people who wonder why they can't lose weight, have no energy, scream at their kids, can’t sleep at night, AND ARE FAT.  It’s all that wheat (or what passes for wheat), artificial ingredients, artificial sweeteners, etc.  DO YOU WANT TO EAT ARTIFICIAL CHEMICALS?  It should be a resounding NO.  I guess my rant this week is people who complain about everything then don't do anything about it.  There are tons of information to lose weight, cook better, using fresh ingredients and not killing yourself or your kids with this fodder.

          That’s what it is, fodder.  Not food.  Fodder just fills you up with no health benefits whatsoever.  Food is nourishing.  It fills you up, it makes you regular, it feeds your cells.  PEOPLE WAKE UP.  Read a lot.  Use the library (what a novel idea), use the Internet, use your friends.  JUST GET REAL AND GET BETTER.  Stop complaining and do something.

I guess I have two raves this week.  One is my Vita-Mix blender and the other is my local Kroger store.  I have had my Vita-Mix since March and use it for everything.  I make smoothies, salad dressings, and soup; YES you can actually make soup in the blender.  I even made a form of Italian Ice once when making a smoothie, I put in too many ice cubes and it froze.  It was yummy for breakfast, too.  Ice cream(?) for breakfast?  YES.  Except I don't use cream, I use almond or coconut milk, or just water, and ice, and any flavoring I want.  Sometimes berries, sometimes just vanilla flavoring, sometimes vegetables, YES, a vegetable smoothie turned into an Icee. 
          The other shout-out is for my local Kroger.  It is a new store and they are on the ball.  The choices of fresh vegetables and fruits are amazing as is their “Health Food Section”.  I always thought this was a stupid label as all food should be Health Food, but alas it’s not.  See my rant.  Anyhow, the people at Kroger are at least making an effort to bring healthier choices to those of us interested in real food.  You don't have to spend a lot of money at specialty shops for healthy food.  Just look around your local grocery.  If it’s lacking, talk to the manager and explain what you are looking for.  Maybe it’s almond milk (shelf safe in the carton), or an organic vegan vegetable broth. 
           If you really want to get healthy, you have to have a Vita-Mix.
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I do not get paid to mention any product, place or anything.  All opinions are mine and mine only.  Any product I mention has been used by me and has my endorsement or not, it’s up to me if I like it or not. 


We have all heard of Granola, we've all eaten Granola, and there are thousands of recipes for Granola.  I have been off ALL GRAINS for two months and cannot tell you how much better I feel, however, I was missing my Granola snacks.  Here’s my take on Granola, I call it Seed-ola.
I will give you the ingredients and the amounts I use.  However, I am aware that all people do not like the same things, so feel free to delete or add whatever you want, as long as it’s not a grain.  Remember, NO oats, oatmeal, rice, rye, barley, tapioca, wheat, corn, or any starches using these grains.  No tapioca starch, no rice starch or flour, AND NO CORNSTARCH. 
I researched this recipe from cookbooks, magazines, the Internet, wherever I could find a granola recipe.  I have to give credit to Lyn-Genet Recitas author of The Plan for getting me off to a good start, however, I wanted something I could carry in a baggie as a snack, not have to add anything at any time, and was basically hassle free after made.  I store mine in the refrigerator in a glass bowl with a plastic lid (I found these awesome Pyrex bowls at my local Kroger store).
Don’t be off-put by the look of this.  My husband says it looks like dirt.  Maybe it does, but it sure doesn't taste like dirt.  You will be pleasantly surprised.


Pre-heat oven to 250 F.

1-cup flax seeds (golden or brown, doesn't matter)
¼ cup chia seeds (yes ch, ch, chia.  Black or white)
¼ or ½ teaspoon of the following – all or just some
Ground ginger
Ground cloves
1-tablespoon ground flax seeds
1-tablespoon ground chia seeds
½ cup slightly warm water
Mix together everything and put in refrigerator for at least 4 hours.  I leave mine overnight.  Cover a cookie sheet with aluminum foil and spread mixture on it.  Don't grease anything.  Cook in pre-heated oven for 45 minutes.
Take it out of oven and let it cool for about 10 minutes.  Do not turn off oven.  Break it up with the back of a spoon to make sure everything is roasted.  At this time you can add:
¼ cup pumpkin seeds (raw and unsalted)
¼ cup chopped nuts (almonds, walnuts, pecans)
Put it back in the oven for about 15 to 20 minutes.  It should be roasted and ready to cool.  Now add:
¼ cup dried fruit (I use a combo of craisins (dried cranberries), dates, plums, or whatever I have on hand.  (ATTENTION:  Please read the ingredient list on the dried fruit packages.  Some of them have strange things added; you don't want to use these.  Get the ones that have the least ingredients.)
Now just put it in a glass bowl and store in the refrigerator. 


1-cup seed-ola with ½ cup almond milk as a cereal.  You can add berries or other fruit (apples, grapes, etc.).  It is really filling, protein filled and you will not have that 10:30 before lunch slump.
Consider adding ¼ cup seed-ola to your salad after adding salad dressing.  It adds crunch, fiber and more protein.
I like to add it to soups.  I make a broccoli soup in my Vita-Mix and add leftover vegetables (after I pour the soup out of the blender) and add ¼ or ½ cup seed-ola.  It adds bulk and will make you regular, if you know what I mean.
In the coming weeks I will be giving you a recipe for the best non-grain (no wheat, rice, oats, etc.) pancakes you will ever taste and I add ¼ cup seed-ola to the pancake mix.

Well, folks, that’s about all for this week, so until next time, HAPPY EATING.    


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