Super-Real Superfoods For Fall

hollithompsonbookByline: Holli Thompson

Fall is the perfect time to reset, rejuvenate, and revamp your nutritional style (too many skinny margaritas by the pool this summer?). And it can be inspiring to look around and see what Mother Earth (via your local farmers’ market) has to offer you and your family’s fall menu. Eating seasonally is also the best way to make sure your body continues to thrive with rapid weather shifts. Here are some of my favorite superfoods for fall to pull out of the closet (so to speak) when I’m putting together my nutritional fall look.

1) Pumpkin

I love the look of the farmers market in fall; an abundance of colorful pumpkins never fails to lift my mood and get me excited about the crisp, autumn weather. Besides being a natural happy pill, in my book, pumpkins are a certified superfood. They’re a healthy carb, and loaded with B-Vitamins, fiber, beta-carotene, and more. My favorite way to enjoy them is in this sumptuous smoothie.

2) Cinnamon

This wondrous spice is at the top of my list for boosting my metabolism and immune system. Cinnamon warms the body at the cellular level helping to rebuild and revitalize, perfect as fall approaches. One of my favorite tips? Sprinkle it over a chopped apple when your sweet tooth kicks in.
Bonus: the malic acid from the apple helps break up congestion throughout your body’s key elimination organs.

3) Bee pollen

Getting sick can really cramp your style during a busy time of year with lots to do. Avoid it all together by adding a touch of bee pollen to your daily routine. Containing 22 amino acids, including the 8 essential ones, and an assortment of enzymes that benefit your health, bee pollen is (most definitely) a super addition to your smoothies.

4) Pomegranates

I’ve loved watching these gorgeous fruits become more popular and accessible in supermarkets over the past few years. A symbol of fertility in ancient times, these jewels are full of potassium and vitamin C. My assistant knocks out the seeds and eats them with a spoon, while I often opt for buying them peeled and ready to go at my local market. I love them in my smoothies, and even on top of seasonal dips.

5) Kale

To me, kale is the little black dress of produce, and fall is its season to shine. One cup of cooked kale offers up to 1,200 percent of your daily vitamin K and almost 600 percent of your daily vitamin A requirement. If you haven’t added it to your menu yet, consider it now. Between salads, tasty kale chips, and even smoothies, it may be more versatile than you think.

Variety matters when it comes to your foods, and so does eating what the seasons provide naturally. When you do, you’ll feel more in tune with your body, grounded and ready for all the upcoming year will bring. Find other tips for seasonal essential oils, exercise, cleansing, hydration and much more in my upcoming book, Discover Your Nutritional Style.

Bonus Offer!

Any member of the Real Foods Witch tribe who pre-orders before September 15 also gets a copy of my guide for ultimate and delicious ways to stay hydrated. And get entered to win a Vitamix machine, an essential oils kit, and much, much more.

Mention this article and Real Foods Witch in the subject line and email us your receipt to dyns@hollithompson.com.

Happy Sweater Weather!

holliHolli Thompson is a former VP for Chanel, turned creator of Nutritional Style®, a health and nutrition blog and consulting company. Her innovative method of identifying the three types of nutritional styles; Healthy Omnivore™, Flexible Vegetarian™, and Modern Vegan™, was established to allow women (and men) to finally experience an attainable, satisfying and always health-filled lifestyle. An inspirational speaker, and TV guest for several major networks, Thompson is the author of a soon-to-be published nutritional lifestyle book, scheduled for 2014. She is a regular contributor to The Daily Love, and shares weekly on her own blog, hollithompson.com. She also contributes to MindBodyGreen.
You can also find her on FacebookTwitter, and Pinterest.

The Number 1 Way To Get Greens In Kids (and You)

Byline: Cristina Cavalieri D’Oro

Boy and Healthy Broccoli Diet on WhiteDo you struggle to get greens in your kids, let alone yourself? Do you strive for them to actually WANT to eat greens and reap the benefits from it? Ask most kids to name vegetables and they will name the standard ones like carrots, potatoes, broccoli etc.

From kale to spinach, bok choi, fennel and collards! Wouldn’t you love for them to want to eat these, let alone them actually knowing what these diverse greens are?

So what is the number 1 way to get greens in kids (and most adults)? It’s pretty simple, make it TASTY and FUN!

Who says eating your broccoli has to be a chore or something that you must eat before getting dessert?

I say, go crazy and add a leaf of spinach here, there and everywhere. There really is no limit to your creativity. The more you add in, the more they will crave it and the nasty stuff will generally phase out if that was part of their diet (yes I’m talking about you refined, processed and artificial foods).

Make it accessible, have a plate of cut up veggies like broccoli, cauliflower, celery or cucumber sticks on the table with zucchini or chickpea hummus available for snacking when those little hands come looking in the kitchen with the munchies. Kale chips are always a winner too!

And let’s face it, kids love sweets, so why not always add some greens in their desserts? Using whole foods and greens, yes they can be healthy too!

Here is a really quick and easy chocolate recipe.

Chocolate à la Fennel Recipe

chocolate fennelIngredients

    • ½ cup cacao
    • ½ cup carob
    • 2 tbsp fennel (the leafy part)
    • 2 ½ tbsp maple syrup
    • ½ cup coconut oil (melted)
    • 2 tbsp coconut butter (melted)

Directions

Process everything into your food processor and put in chocolate molds. Refrigerate until hard.

Note: If you want to avoid giving cacao, you can use carob instead.

 

author picA health and natural living enthusiast for over 15 years, as a health coach, Cristina is especially passionate about wellness to empower the female spirit. As a mother of two girls, Cristina leads her household through mindful parenting, healthy nutrition, and loves to find creative ways to incorporate greens into meals and desserts. She can be found at For The Love of Greens and on her Facebook page.

 

Make Any Vegetable Taste Irresistible

Simple Broccoli Garlic HazelnutsByline: Heather Pierce

You already know vegetables are good for you.

But there’s only so many times you can massage a bowl of kale before your tummy shouts “BO-RING!

Our mouths (and digestive systems) want to be entertained.

And if we don’t get that entertainment in our meals, we’ll look for it in half a box of gluten-free chocolate chip cookies. Yikes.

The best way to bring delight to every health meal? Throw a party for all of your senses.

Sight

Yes, how beautiful your dish looks affects how much you’ll enjoy it. Having a bowl of rice or just plain greens? Grate some carrot, sprinkle some pepper flakes, or toss some thinly sliced yellow bell peppers into your meal to give it an eye-pleasing pop of color.

Smell

Well, this one’s pretty obvious. Anyone who has walked into a home draped in the aroma of sauteed onions and said “oooh, what are you making?” knows just how the smell of food with make us salivate.

Touch and Sound

The most satisfying fare plays with a variety of textures. You don’t want a dish to be all crunchy or all creamy – how boring! That’s why guacamole is more gratifying with chips than with mashed potatoes. Or a bowl of oatmeal is more exciting with the tender crunch of a few walnuts sprinkled on top.

Taste

Think about your favorite dishes – they don’t normally have one flavor. That’s why we love a little sea salt on our dark chocolate. Or a kick of spice in a creamy soup.

And superfood leafy greens like kale or Swiss chard? They tend to be a little bitter. How can we sass them up?

Let’s add some sweetness with caramelized shallots or dried fruit like raisins or cherries.
…and some saltiness with, well, salt. Or tamari soy sauce.
…or a hint of sour flavor with vinegar or lemon juice.
…and to add more depth, the pungent flavor of garlic or ginger.
Then, to pack a punch we’ll add some lemon zest for a pop of color and some toasted nuts for an interesting crunch.

Just a few simple ingredients and you’ve instantly elevated a food from a healthy-but-obligatory side dish to “can we please have this every day this week?!

Try it yourself!

My two favorite veggie dishes use this exact formula. Check out some of my videos for inspiration on creating your own indulgent vegetable dish.

Or try you own twist!

HPG Profile Pic SmallerHeather is the healthy cooking YouTube show host and creator of the Go Feed Yourself Method: a 5-step online course for creating fast meals that keep you focused.  For more ideas, check out Heather’s free virtual cooking lesson or check out more of her recipe formulas and healthy cooking tricks at heatherpierceinc.com. Enjoy!

Forget Boring Salads! 3 Ways To Eat More Greens Painlessly

This is a guest post by Heather Rampolla.

Eat More Greens PainlesslyDo you ever feel like it’s a struggle to eat more greens? Perhaps you know you should be eating more leafy greens, but chewing on another (boring) salad… seems so blah!

There are many magical benefits from consuming leafy green vegetables:

  • Full of vitamins, minerals, and disease-fighting phytochemicals;
  • Rich in fiber, an important nutrient for optimal digestion, weight loss, and controlling hunger;
  • Helps lower cholesterol, blood pressure, and temper blood-sugar swings;
  • Contains a lot of water to help keep you hydrated;
  • Contributes to beautiful skin and hair;
  • May help ward off depression and improve mood

You likely already know all this but struggle with how to make greens fit in without any drastic change to your current lifestyle.

Regardless of what Kermit the Frog has told you, eating more greens can be easy without sacrificing taste.

 

Here Are 3 Simple Magic Tricks To Eat More Greens Painlessly:

#1 – “Chop The Crop”

Sometimes I just want to eat a “normal” meal– not a salad– and sometimes I feel too lazy to chop my veggies by hand. On days like these I gently pulsate my greens in my blender or food processor and throw them into whatever hearty dish I happen to be cooking.

This “chop the crop” technique greatly reduces the volume of my greens. With this method, I can easily get in lots of leafy greens without feeling like I’m eating lots of greens. Plus, it only takes a matter of seconds to chop and toss into any meal.

Here are two of my favorite meals that use the “Chop the Crop” method:
Kale Pesto Pasta
Super Fast Kale Salad

If you’re not a fan of kale by all means switch it out with spinach or another leafy green you love.

#2 – “Green Drink Packs”

If you’ve never tried green smoothies and juices before, they can sound like drinking lawnmower pulp or swamp water. I assure you they’re not. In fact they can be a super way of adding in your greens without tasting them.

But even if you know that you like green smoothies or juices – when you’re busy, sometimes the idea of pulling out multiple ingredients to make a green smoothie or juice can feel overwhelming.

“Green Drink Packs” are so simple to make. One day a week I create 5-7 “packs”. Here’s how you make them:

For smoothies, I use a large plastic baggie that includes all my ingredients to make one green smoothie recipe. I make these packs in bulk and stack them neatly in the freezer. That way when I need a super fast meal or snack, all I have to do is pop a Green Drink Pack out, maybe add some water to the blender, and voila! Literally 2 minutes to make a meal.

For juices, I use an 8-10 cup container, and place all my ingredients to make one green juice recipe. I usually lay the greens first, and use the weight of the cucumber, celery or apples to compact the greens. I also make these in bulk for the week and stack them in my fridge. It takes about 15 minutes max in prep time, but saves me about 15 minutes each day.

Drink Packs are perfect for when you’re busy or on-the-go. You’re getting handfuls of fresh fruits and veggies that without blending or juicing would be time consuming to eat.

Here a few Green Drink Pack ideas to get you started.

#3 – “Roll With It”

Have you discovered that even with the best of intentions that salad that you brought to work gets ditched as you head for the deli? Especially at lunch time we tend to crave foods that we can eat with our hands…pizza, sandwiches, wraps, etc.

Why not change it up a bit and use your leafy greens as the base of your wraps and sandwiches. Fill them as you would any other store bought wrap. Or toss in some of your leftovers for a quick meal.

Collard greens, and Swiss chard are two of my favorites to make wraps with because they are large and can easily fit lots of fun fillings inside. You can also use tender butter leaf lettuce and make smaller wraps.

Sure, it’s not quite the same as eating with bread, but you’re also eliminating the wheat and gluten, which converts to sugar and adds on weight.

Try my Sesame Ginger Wraps recipe that your whole family will love.

Now that you have 3 Magic Methods to painlessly add in more greens, which one are you most excited to try?

NEWCLEARfbprofileHeather Rampolla shows you how to add in more fresh foods into your busy lifestyle without sacrificing taste. Want more help? Click here to discover the 3 Steps To Get Out Of Your FUNK & Stop Eating JUNK!