STRESS LOWERING CHOCOLATE REISHI SMOOTHIE

STRESS LOWERING CHOCOLATE REISHI SMOOTHIE

Reishi mushrooms have been used in Traditional Chinese Medicine for thousands of years and have been examined in countless medical studies. They are considered adaptogenic herbs as they help the body deal with stress by targeting cortisol and reducing inflammation…

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SUMAC CHIA JAM

I love jam, but don't love the added corn syrup, sugar, and preservatives that it usually has. Thanks to The Kitchn, there's an easy, healthy way to make delicious jam. Check out my version of their chia jam below.

Ingredients:

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  • 1 cup fresh or frozen pitted cherries
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen strawberries
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons sumac
  • Pinch red pepper flakes
  • 2 tablespoons raw honey or maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons chia seeds

Directions:

  1. Combine the cherries, strawberries, sumac and red pepper flakes in a pot with 2 tablespoons water.
  2. Over medium heat, let the fruit boil and break down. Once softened, smash the fruit to your liking. 
  3. Add the lemon juice and honey, stirring until well combined.
  4. Once syrup-y and relatively thickened, remove from heat.
  5. Add chia seeds and let thicken (about 5-10 minutes).
  6. Let cool and store in glass container in the fridge.

ANTI INFLAMMATORY FOODS + AN INFLAMMATION FIGHTING TURMERIC SMOOTHIE

"Inflammation" and "anti-inflammatory" are huge buzzwords. What do they really mean though?

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Inflammation is the process by which your immune system becomes activated in response to a foreign invader. An acute inflammatory response is crucial to our health and can save our lives in dire situations. Inflammation, however, sometimes persists and can become what we know as chronic inflammation. Chronic inflammation, in recent years, has been linked to numerous life-threatening diseases including heart disease, diabetes, alzheimer's, and cancer.

Certain foods have actually been shown to prevent and fight inflammation, reducing your disease risk overall. Foods that are deemed anti-inflammatory are those deep in color and bursting with antioxidants and polyphenols. Some of these include:

Dark leafy greens and other bright/deep colored vegetables; berries; nuts and seeds; pasture raised eggs, meat and poultry; fatty omega-3 rich fish like salmon, sardines, mackerel and anchovies; beta-carotene rich foods like sweet potatoes, butternut squash and carrots; healthy monounsaturated and saturated fats like avocado, coconut butter, coconut milk, olive oil, avocado oil, sesame oil, algae oil, and coconut oil; and spices, herbs and powders like cacao powder, cinnamon, cloves, turmeric, black pepper, oregano, parsley, basil, and cilantro to name a few. 

Incorporating anti-inflammatory foods into your diet on a regular basis is a brilliant way to potentially protect yourself against disease, increase energy, lose weight, stabilize your blood sugar and get glowing, dewy skin.

One of my favorite ways to get a quick, anti-inflammatory dose is by adding turmeric into smoothies and dishes. Thanks to curcumin, the main active ingredient in turmeric, turmeric is very high in antioxidants. It's so powerful that growing evidence shows that curcumin in turmeric may block the progression of Alzheimers disease in mice.

For a simple, fun way to incorporate turmeric into your morning routine, try making this blood sugar stabilizing, fruit-free turmeric smoothie!

Inflammation Fighting Turmeric Smoothie

  • 3/4 cup full fat coconut milk
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • Pinch black pepper (for absorption of curcumin in turmeric)
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon 
  • 1/4 teaspoon ginger powder
  • 2 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1 tablespoon natural peanut or almond butter
  • 1 cup pre-roasted butternut squash (or 3/4 cup canned)
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder like Vital Proteins Collagen Whey
  • Ice

If you need a touch of extra sweetness, 1/2 banana would be perfect here.

Directions:

Add liquid first and ice last. Blend on high 2-3 minutes until perfectly smooth. Top with your favorite granola or nothing at all. <3

BUTTERNUT TAHINI TRUFFLES

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I love a good truffle. When done right, they're moist, high in good fats and shouldn't be overly sweet. I'm totally in the holiday spirit and definitely still on the pumpkin (well in this case, butternut squash) train. 

I designed these truffles for clients of mine as a way to feed dessert cravings without a huge blood sugar spike. These holiday truffles are gluten free, grain free, completely vegan and free of processed sugars. They're so easy to make and I must say, THEY LEGIT TASTE LIKE DONUT HOLES. Enjoy, my loves.

Ingredients:

Truffles

  • 2/3 cup butternut squash puree (can sub with pumpkin puree)
  • 1/3 cup tahini
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil, melted
  • 2 tablespoon coconut flour
  • 2 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla powder (or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract)
  • 1/2 teaspoon allspice
  • 3/4 teaspoon sea salt

Chocolate Sauce

  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup very dark chocolate chunks (or chocolate chips)
  • 1 tablespoon coconut sugar

Instructions:

  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • In a bowl, mix the squash, tahini, melted coconut oil, coconut flour, maple syrup, cinnamon, vanilla powder, allspice, and sea salt until well combined. 
  • Roll the truffle dough into balls
  • In a double broiler (or a heat proof bowl placed on top of simmering water on the stove), melt the chocolate, remaining coconut oil and coconut sugar and combine.
  • Decorate the truffles by dipping them in chocolate, drizzling with chocolate, or rolling in coconut sugar+cinnamon. 
  • Place in freezer for 30 minutes. Store in freezer for 2 weeks or fridge for 2-3 days. 

Happy truffling!

CHERRY POMEGRANATE SMOOTHIE

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Who doesn't love pomegranate? It's sweet. It's refreshing. It's fun to eat. And its loaded with health promoting nutrients. Pomegranates boast inflammation fighting flavanols which can help prevent and treat arthritis and polyphenols which can improve cardiovascular health by lowering blood pressure and reducing plaque in the carotid arteries. They even stimulate probiotic bacteria in your gut. 

It's one of my favorite fruits because it even looks festive and is so strongly associated with the holiday season. So naturally, I created this special holiday pomegranate smoothie. I hope you love it!

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup pomegranate seeds
  • 1/3 frozen banana
  • 1 cup steamed and then frozen zucchini slices
  • 1/4 cup mint
  • 1/2 cup full fat coconut milk
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1 serving organic protein powder

Directions:

Add liquid to blender first and frozen ingredients last. Blend on high for 2 minutes until smooth and voila. Happy Holidays! <3