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.

A 5-Step Guide To A Picky Eater Lunchbox

Picky Eaters love real food, too | Nourish Real Food

Byline: Sara Bradford

It’s back-to-school and everyone is thinking about lunchbox packing. Which lunchbox vessels to buy, what ideas you can come up with, and how you’re going to send a lunchbox that comes home empty.

While an exciting time for many of you and the chance to return to routine, the lunchbox brings up a range of emotions that is unique to anything I’ve seen as a nutritionist. This is ESPECIALLY TRUE when you are a parent that gets to pack A Picky Eater Lunchbox.

There is a very good chance you have a particular someone in your home that’s going to make packing lunches a challenge, that will test your patience beyond supermom capabilities. What about our “picky eaters” that just won’t eat anything we want them to eat? What then?

Well, you see…the picky eater (as we call them) are just little creatures with undeveloped palates. And it frustrates us to all heck when we feel they have control over this food thing. But perhaps that is where we’ve gone wrong. Perhaps we must all make an attitude shift. And instead remind ourselves of the reason they eat this way. And how to prevent it from making us crazy.

This is where I use my “very-experienced-lunchbox-building-nutritionist-mama” advice that COULD possibly change your life.

Focus On What They Will Eat!

What?

Yeah, instead of wasting all that energy on why they don’t eat broccoli, praise them for eating green beans. Instead of turning inside out because they turn their nose up at chicken, hide some lentils in their homemade muffin.

And please stop saying to yourself that you HAVE to give them baloney sandwiches because it’s one of the only 5 things they’ll eat. Guess what, your list just got shorter…and easier!

Here are FIVE special ways to pack a picky eater lunchbox – that may even make you stop using the words “picky eater”.

#1: Master List

Make a master list of ALL…and I mean ALL the foods your simple-palated lovely likes to eat. You will be AMAZED at how long this list actually is.

#2: Skip The Crap Food (like baloney)

Part of developing a palate is “un-developing” a taste for the bad foods. I taught a workshop once on the sense of taste at a YMCA. I was SHOCKED to discover kids there who thought the (rather unbearably) “sweet” tasting water was nothing but water. They consumed so much sugar that it tasted like nothing. This is easy to change once sugar is removed or reduced.

#3: Hide Stuff In Stuff

Eventually they’ll try new things. Just not yet. In the meantime, get that nutrition INTO them by adding pureed vegetables, fruits, beans, or whatever into what they will eat.

Example: My daughter, picky-eater-extraordinaire, eats chili (of all things). You’d be amazed at what I can hide in there. It’s awesome.

#4: Empower Them

Let them choose the vegetable you pack in the lunchbox. Or ask them what fruit they want today. Don’t be crazy-mom and ask what their choice of protein is – work with what they understand. (Do you want cheese or hummus?)

#5: Substitute Good For Better

They want chocolate milk? Give them raw milk with homemade chocolate syrup – or even give dairy-free milk alternatives a go. They want cooked carrots? Slather them with some kind of high quality fat. They want a banana muffin? Make it with fresh ground spelt flour with pureed lentils, natural sweeteners and hippy chocolate chips.

And continue to inspire. Don’t be a fuss-pot yourself. Try new things in front of them. Their curiosity will be piqued.

Most of all, know that you are doing just fine. You’ll both be laughing about this over raw oysters and kombucha in 15 years. Happy Back-To-School! xo

Sara Bradford | Nourish Real FoodSara Bradford is owner/founder of Nourish ~ Real Food and a registered holistic nutritionist. She gets asked time and time again how she maintains her lunchbox enthusiasm. But, somewhere along the line, she was blessed with a burning desire to create the most healthy, delicious, colourful lunch boxes for her kids – and decided to take her years of experience as a Holistic Nutritionist and shower you with healthy lunchbox recipes.
On her site, you can find Sara’s lunchbox blog, her upcoming Think Inside the Lunchbox e-book, Lunchbox Kitchen TV videos, and check out her upcoming 30-Day Lunchbox Building Challenge and sign-up for her free newsletter.

What To Eat After Giving Birth

Byline: Julia Jones

Pregnancy is a time of wonder, hope and anticipation. But after that little bundle of joy arrives many mothers find themselves struggling. Postnatal depression and divorce rates are high, and breastfeeding rates are low.  Over 80% of new mothers say they feel exhausted and overwhelmed.

But before I scare you away I want you to know it doesn’t have to be like this. After giving birth women have very special physical and emotional needs, recognised by hundreds of different cultures for thousands of years. Anthropologists Stern and Kruckman found that cultures with low incidence of postpartum mood disorders share a range of protective social structures that provide support and care for new mothers.

Similarly, anthropologist Dr. Dana Raphael studied how humans have managed to keep their babies alive for so long when breastfeeding seems so hard. She found the same pattern occurring in nearly 200 cultures around the world. Ancient communities appreciate a new mother’s needs, not the least of which is your need to be nurtured and loved and cared for in the same way that you nurture and love and care for your baby.

Why hospital food is the worst thing you can eat after birth. And what to eat instead.

One of the key universal features of postpartum care around the world is warm, nourishing comfort foods. Soups, stews and puddings feature on international postpartum menus and are always cooked for the mother, not by her. Different cultures have variations in detail. I cook Ayurvedic food for my clients, based on ancient Indian medicine.

Ayurveda is an elemental science, meaning it is based on the five elements – earth, fire, water, air and space. If you picture a pregnant woman you can see her abundance of earth and water! Childbirth is the biggest and fastest change in a woman’s life. In just a few hours her body loses vast amounts of earth (for example the baby and placenta), water (in amniotic fluid and tears) and fire (through her blood and sweat). Ayurveda emphasises balancing the elements in your body, meaning you need to replace the earth, water and fire that is lost in childbirth.

Even if you normally enjoy eating raw foods, Ayurveda teaches us that different foods are appropriate for different stages of life. Raw foods are suitable for people with strong digestion and lots of earth and fire. New mothers on the other hand are already high in air and space. The qualities needed after birth are sweetness, warmth, oiliness, simplicity and moisture. Soups, stews and puddings, good fats and good sugars will give you the energy you need, but to digest them you will need to add spices and keep meals simple and regular.

An Ayurvedic postpartum diet is like weaning a baby. When you eat after giving birth, start with soft, warm, soupy foods that are simple to digest, gradually introduce more texture and variety, and eventually, as your appetite and energy return you can go back to your regular diet. Sit down to eat fresh, homemade food regularly. If you only do one thing – eat cooked food.

You can see how standard issue hospital food does not fit the postpartum bill as it is often old, cold, dry and heavy to digest.

This is a recipe I suggest instead, as it aids digestion, has instantly accessible energy and builds blood. Rice pudding is a wonderful food for friends and family to bring you in hospital in a thermos, so add this recipe to your birth plan.

Nepali Rice Pudding Recipe

rice pudding

Cooking time 35 minutes
Serves 3—4

Ingredients

  • 5 cups pure water
  • 1 cup basmati rice
  • ¼ cup jaggery
  • ¼ cup ghee
  • 2 teaspoon ginger powder
  • 2/3 teaspoon cinnamon powder
  • pinch nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 cup milk

Directions

Bring water and rice to a boil in large pot. Simmer, stirring occasionally until it begins to thicken. This should take about 20 minutes.

Add the sugar and spices and ghee. You may need to add an extra cup of water at this stage if your pudding is too thick.

Continue to cook slowly; stirring as needed. When gelatinous consistency add milk. Cook for a few more minutes to thicken.

Serve hot, with sugar and ghee to taste. Serve as desired throughout the day.

This recipe is from my book Nourishing Newborn Mother – Ayurvedic recipes to heal your mind, body and soul after childbirth. You can check it out at www.newbornmothers.com.au.

mailchimp size profile picJulia works with pregnant women who want to find peace and joy in motherhood and is the founder of Newborn Mothers. She is an Ayurvedic postnatal doula, recipe book author and creator of a weekly free pregnancy podcast. Click here to listen to her free podcasts.

Tips for Raising Real Food Eaters

Tips for Raising Real Food Eaters - Rebs GarciaByline: Rebs Garcia

We want our kids to be healthy and eat real food but modern family life does not always make that easy. Life is busy and healthy foods are not always the foods your kids want to eat. As a mom of four kids ages 3-19, I understand it can be a challenge to raise kids who enjoy eating real food. Over the last few years we have transitioned to a mostly Real Food diet and learned some key lessons along the way. Today I am sharing my tips for raising real food eaters.

Empower and Involve your Kids

Kids love to have the power to make their own decisions, even when it comes to food. As a parent you can help make healthy choices easy by filling your fridge and pantry with real food. Have bins of quickly accessible healthy snacks in your pantry and fridge so that kids can help themselves throughout the day. Place a basket of whole fruit on the counter and keep cut up fruits and veggies at eye level in the fridge to encourage the whole family to eat more produce.

I have found that if kids help pick it, grow it or make it they are more likely to eat it. Since real food often requires a little more prep work involving your kids can be a win-win. Even small children can help with tasks like washing, pouring ingredients, stirring or pushing the buttons on the blender or food processor. My toddlers have loved to press the blender button to make our Green Smoothies. As a parent it can require a little extra patience (or clean up) to have your kids help but when you see how excited they are to eat their creation it is worth it!

Discover how Food Grows

Teaching your kids about where food comes from can help them get more excited and interested in trying real food. Planting a garden is a great way to help kids connect with real food. If you have a black thumb and live in the desert like me, you can do something simple like small pots of herbs in your kitchen. Shopping at farmers markets, visiting a community garden, joining a CSA or going to a pick it yourself farms are all options to help discover how food is created. Social media can be a great way to discover and follow family farms and introduce your family virtually to how animals are raised or plants grow. My kids love to look at posts from a small family farm in Texas that I discovered on Instagram.

Be a Positive Role Model

Ever noticed that your child will eat just about anything if it is on YOUR plate, instead of theirs? Kids watch what you eat and will follow your lead. Have a positive attitude about healthy eating and be willing to try new foods. Focus on the benefits of fueling and nourishing our bodies with healthy real food. Make choosing real foods a positive experience by focusing on increasing healthy food choices instead of talking about what they cannot or should not eat. Show them balance and moderation. Don’t let food become a power struggle or a source of guilt in your family, always put relationships first.

Make it Fun and Be Flexible

You also don’t need to spend hours creating food art to make it fun for kids. Simple tricks like using cookie cutters to cut fruit or serving salad on a stick instead in a bowl can make real food more fun for kids. My kids love making our own fruit or yogurt popsicle during the summer and you can find all sorts of fun molds. Talk about eating the rainbow and how foods can help them grow and have fun.

Along with fun it’s important to be flexible. Every child is different and it can take 8-10 times before a child is willing to try a new food so don’t get discouraged the first time your child says no to broccoli. Instead keep serving him the “green trees” and you might be surprised when he finally does like it. I have one son who loves smoothies, as long as they aren’t green. Our smoothies always have lots of greens, I just make sure to add enough berries to get the right color. Another son would much rather have fresh juice instead of a smoothie. Another child will not touch cooked peas but loves them frozen. I cook and serve one family meal, but try to have variety in our weekly meal plan to ensure different kids get options they like regularly while also being offered new foods options.

What are your tips and tricks for helping your kids choose real food? I’d love to hear.

Rebecca GarciaRebs Garcia is a Healthy Living Mentor and Weight Loss Coach. She helps you get off the diet roller-coaster and use simple Healthy Habits to create lasting lifestyle change. Rebs’ passion for helping others comes from her personal experience of losing 100 lbs and finally overcoming her lifelong battle with obesity. Rebs is a wife and mama of four kids living in sun-drenched Las Vegas.

Click here to get your free guide, “Eat More, Not Less: Simple Healthy Habits for Weight Loss” or connect with her on the Mission Healthy Life with Rebs Facebook page.

 

7 Reasons You Might be Avoiding Real Foods

Byline: Teri Wade

I’m sure I don’t need to tell you what real foods are. You know what they are! And you know they’re good for you. So why don’t you reach for them all the time?

The following list is about the many reasons you might grab what’s not “real”. Some you’ll be familiar with and some might sound completely new. I’d love to hear your comments below.

1. Because unhealthy food can be yummy.

Like a warm Krispy Kreme donut. Yummy poison can be pretty addictive. But the less time you spend eating it, the less you want it. Good choices will snowball into more good choices. Count each one as a win.

2. Because everyone else is doing it.

It’s hard to turn down cheesecake and reach for vegetables when you’re the only one doing it. But the stronger your good eating habits become, the easier it will be to turn down the unreal stuff. Hanging out more often with your healthier eating friends will help a lot to reduce temptation and increase the realness.

3. Because you don’t have time.

There are a lot of fast, unhealthy options out there and they’re very tempting! Especially after work when you don’t have energy to figure out what to eat, let alone make it. Planning ahead for the entire week can help tremendously. There are also many affordable, healthy meal preparation options out there! Even on a budget.

4. Because you don’t know what to make.

That’s why sites like this are great! (shameless plug). But seriously, block a time in your busy schedule to surf around and print new recipes to try. When you find a favorite, schedule it into your weekly routine.

5. Because Your Parents Didn’t Make This Kind of Food.

What you’re used to runs deep. When you were little, you often went to great lengths to be like your parents (we all did!). And many of their habits are deeply imprinted and can feel hard to shake. If your parents didn’t model the healthiest eating habits, you may need to give the little kid in you a message that most of us never got (but need): “It’s perfectly fine to be different from your parents in any way that feels right for you, they will still love you no matter what.”

6. You’ll attract unwanted attention.

A natural consequence of eating healthy (especially when coupled with exercise) is to look and feel great. Why wouldn’t you want that?! Well, there are all sorts of unconscious reasons. If you’ve ever been physically taken advantage, it’s common to secretly want extra pounds to protect yourself. Some people do this to stave off relationships altogether, especially when you’ve been burned. Sometimes different parts of you want different things, and the right support can help you make peace inside and feel safe feeling great.

7. Because you’re not used to the higher vibe.

Eating whole and healthy foods on a consistent basis will leave you feeling great. Why wouldn’t everyone want that? Well, it’s common to unconsciously sabotage yourself from feeling too good for too long, for a variety of reasons (such as a fear of becoming too different from your loved ones). Picking the wrong foods is a fast way to check your own happiness. Next time you’re feeling great and suddenly crave something not-so-great, remind yourself that it’s ok to feel great and it’s ok to feel even better. You’ll get more and more used to the higher vibe the more you stretch yourself to make it feel like home.

Teri Wade is a Mindset Repatterning Expert and founder of The Evolving Artist. She specializes in helping people overcome  internal obstacles to success so they can thrive in all areas of their life. You can learn more about her work at TheEvolvingArtist.com