Archive for May, 2009

Turkey – White Bean Chili over Greens with Caramelized Sweet Potato

I created another impromptu recipe last night from my Mariquita Farms organic veggie box and some staple pantry items.

Here’s the treasure trove of veggies we got in this week’s $25 box (I don’t want to hear anymore that “organic is too expensive” — rubbish! blasphemy! untrue! More proof coming soon…): See this blog post for more info on eating organic for cheap:

This is also a great “chili” recipe for those who can’t eat nightshade vegetables – it has no tomatoes, peppers, or white potatoes. Also great for allergen-free, delicious eating for autoimmune and the allergy-prone. For those careful of the oxalate levels (oxalic acid) in their diet, you can replace the chard with lower-oxalate greens such as the greens of bok choy.

This recipe is very filling, with LOTS of fiber, protein, immune system protectors, phytonutrients, and is a perfect warm/cold combo for a spring-into-summer dish!

If you share this recipe, please include a link to this posting and credit to Delicious Health, Inc. Thanks!

Turkey &  Navy Bean “Chili” Over Greens with Caramelized Sweet Potato

Generously serves 2


1 TBS extra virgin olive oil
8 small spring shallots (can use 1 medium regular shallot instead), finely chopped
4 small spring /green onion purplettes (can use 1 small or 1/2 medium red onion instead), finely chopped
1/4 lb. ground dark meat turkey
1/4 lb. ground white meat turkey
1 can organic navy or any other favorite beans, rinsed and drained (I recommend the brand Eden)
2-3 TBS of water or broth, optional
3 TBS fresh winter savory, finely chopped (can replace with fresh rosemary or thyme)
1/2 bunch fresh basil, leaves rolled and sliced into strips
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
6-10 shakes of Umeboshi Plum Vinegar – can replace with juice of 1/2 lemon plus sea salt to taste
Additional sea salt, to taste
Black pepper, to taste

2 medium sweet potatoes , scrubbed/washed, and punched with a fork all around

1 bunch raw baby chard, washed and torn into bite-size pieces, hard stems torn off and discarded (can use any baby or delicate greens, like spinach, or arugula, or watercress for a more peppery punch)


  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Place prepared sweet potatoes on parchment paper on a pizza pan or cookie tray and let cook for 1 hour. Reduce heat to 400 for another 30 minutes. Then turn heat down to 200-350 until the rest of your food is ready to serve.
  2. Warm olive oil over low heat in large saute pan for 2-3 minutes.
  3. Add shallots and red onions, saute until tender.
  4. Add ground turkey and saute until browned.
  5. Add water / broth if pan too dry.
  6. Add savory or thyme / rosemary, cumin and turmeric
  7. Stir in the beans. Cook until thoroughly heated.
  8. Season with umeboshi plum vinegar or alternative (lemon juice + sea salt).
  9. Before removing pan from heat, stir in basil and let cook for 1 more minute.
  10. Add black pepper and/or additional sea salt to taste.
  11. Line half of plate with the prepared raw baby greens.
  12. Serve chili on top of the greens. The greens will wilt and shrink in size.
  13. Cut sweet potato open and place on other half of plate. No need for brown sugar, butter, or salt. You’ve got all the natural sugar, flavor, and fats you need in this dish.


May 31, 2009 at 7:28 PM 3 comments

“Exposed: the great [genetically modified] crops myth”

“Exposed: the great GM crops myth: Major new study shows that modified soya produces 10 per cent less food than its conventional equivalent”

Read the whole article here:

I’m so happy to see this. Will be interesting to hear from those of you who prefer to see hard-core scientific proof and numbers behind everything.

Finally, part of the PR veil is parting…  Although one could argue this veil has been see-through for a loooong time, which I believe it has.

I don’t need this article to tell me a little bit using a few numbers  (even if it is well researched) when my body already knows a lot about the effects of GM foods.

If you want to learn more, one way would be to watch The Future of Food, a documentary parting the veil even further:

Another movie opening soon is Fresh. Watch a trailer here:

From their site:

Synopsis of “Fresh”

FRESH celebrates the farmers, thinkers and business people across America who are re-inventing our food system. Each has witnessed the rapid transformation of our agriculture into an industrial model, and confronted the consequences: food contamination, environmental pollution, depletion of natural resources, and morbid obesity. Forging healthier, sustainable alternatives, they offer a practical vision for a future of our food and our planet.

Among several main characters, FRESH features urban farmer and activist, Will Allen, the recipient of MacArthur’s 2008 Genius Award; sustainable farmer and entrepreneur, Joel Salatin, made famous by Michael Pollan’s book, The Omnivore’s Dilemma; and supermarket owner, David Ball, challenging our Wal-Mart dominated economy.

I’ll be at the June 12th showing & speaker panel event in San Francisco. Check here to see whether there’s a showing in a city near you:

Hope to see you there! Stay real.

May 27, 2009 at 12:45 PM Leave a comment

The Proof is in the Pudding! EAT SLOW, CHEW WELL.

A former client of mine sent me this FANTASTIC chart that plots time spent eating per day vs. the national obesity rate in several countries. It’s so very telling. Notice where the U.S. falls in this chart. Coincidence? I don’t think so.

Click here for the Chart (Economix, NY Times Blog)

We tend to wolf our food down, barely chewing or realizing what we’re really eating, and then wonder why we crave sweets, why we crash at 3-4pm, why we’re sick, and why we’re fat.

I go over the principles and practices of chewing and mindful eating with my clients. You’d be amazed at what you find you like and are satiated by if you eat this way. Or how natural fat-fighting mechanisms are activated by the simple act of chewing. Or how all of a sudden you don’t have heartburn anymore.

I, myself, am probably the slowest eater you’ll ever find (perhaps apart from my dear friend Erick). I’ve always been that way, but you can learn how to slow down, too.

So… MASTICATE! MASTICATE! And slow down. Life is better slow.

May 19, 2009 at 7:08 PM Leave a comment

Mixed Feelings About National Fibromyalgia Awareness Day

is Today.

I have mixed feelings about it. The information trumpeted out is helpful, the awareness and support is undeniably fantastic and much, much needed,… but it’s not the full picture as it’s skewed towards western (allopathic) medicine.

If 5% of my healing was thanks to western medicine, 95% of my healing was thanks to “alternative” medicine (with is not my “alternative” – it’s my default when it comes to my chronic conditions).

These include:

Naturopathic medicine, including pharmaceutical-grade supplements to rebuild my deficiencies, get rid of my antibiotic-induced gallstones without surgery, plus oral chelation for heavy metals, and homeopathy for a host of other things

Acupuncture and other traditional chinese medicine branches, such as QiGong

Ayurvedic practices

Chiropractic, specifically the biogeometric integration method

Massage therapy

Guided imagery and meditation

Infrared sauna therapy

and, of course, Nutrition. Always nutrition.

I’ll plan on writing more about each of these modalities separately as this post would be too long if I try to do any of these any justice, but until then:

For a great deal of information about National Fibromyalgia Awareness Day, visit the National Fibromyalgia Association’s webpage here:

It’s important to know that while western medicine states that the causes of fibromyalgia “still remain a mystery,” (see website above) it’s not such a mystery if you seek knowledgable sources and find the right fit with practitioners such as a Naturopathic Doctor or Functional Medicine Practitioner (MD with additional training). I am walking, talking proof of that. THAT is what frustrates me. And I can do something about it, so I will, here on this blog, one post at a time, in my capacity as a Health Counselor, Nutrition Educator, and Fibromyalgia + thriver.

May 12, 2009 at 9:01 AM Leave a comment

Savory Rhubarb Over Jade Rice

Call it beginner’s luck.

I’d never had rhubarb before. I didn’t grow up in the U.S. I’ve never met a rhubarb pie.

When I saw some pretty rhubarb stalks at the organic co-op yesterday, I figured you could cook this thing, but I had no idea how.

So first I looked at it. Looked like a big, red celery stalk. Hmmm.

Then I bit into a thin slice. Interesting. Possibilities…

When I said earlier today I was going to make a savory rhubarb dish, I got a range of responses, from “Ew,” to “I love rhubarb!” Somebody had to be wrong.

This was intuitive cooking with a capital “I.” It was either going to be really, really good, or absolutely awful.

Well, here’s the recipe. You decide.

Ground Turkey in a Savory Mango Rhubarb Medley

2 TBS extra virgin olive oil
1 medium red onion, sliced into half moons
4 large garlic cloves, finely diced
1/4 lb ground turkey breast (light meat)
1/4 lb ground turkey thigh (dark meat)
1 large rhubarb stalk, thinly sliced
1 medium mango (It was staring at me saying “I’m RIPE!”), cut into small chunks
1 large handful of fresh basil, cut into strips
Sea salt, to taste
1 cup rice of choice, cooked (I found a beautiful Jade Rice – white rice infused with bamboo extract – green and gorgeous – so many colors on the plate!)

  1. Heat the olive oil slightly in a large frying pan
  2. Add the onion and garlic, stir over medium / medium-low heat for 5 minutes.
  3. Add turkey, stir in, let cook for 10 minutes
  4. Add rhubarb, stir in, let cook for another 5 minutes
  5. Stir in mango, let cook for another 5 minutes
  6. When the rhubarb is cooked through, stir in basil and turn off heat

Serve over rice and enjoy! We did.

Let me know what you think.

The nutritional value of rhubarb: good levels of calcium, potassium, iron. Those on a low oxalate diet, beware.

Note: If you choose to share this recipe or others on this site, please include a link to this blog along with it. Thanks!

May 9, 2009 at 12:27 AM Leave a comment

Eat Your Stress Away was SOLD OUT!

We had so much fun at my live workshop Eat Your Stress Away – The Right Way on Monday evening here in San Francisco. There were over 30 attendees – more than had RSVP’d!

Tons of great questions and group participation. Each attendee got to score themselves on my Stress Resilience Factor Finder (tm) quiz and see where they stood. Maybe because this is San Francisco and all, but everyone scored in the upper 2/3’s of the range, which means they were well on their way to becoming friends with the stress in their lives and not letting stress undermine their health in the long term.

We also reviewed the effects of stress on health/your body, mind, and emotions, went over the top foods to bust stress and the three lifestyle choices that you must prioritize to stay healthy in the presence of stress.

I hope to see or hear YOU at the next one! I’ll be offering this popular talk as a teleclass soon as I’ve gotten lots of requests from folks living across the country who want to participate. Stay tuned!

May 6, 2009 at 9:29 AM Leave a comment

KNOW YOUR BODY. Tracking Your Autoimmune Symptoms is a MUST for Healing.

I had pepperoni pizza last night and it was GOOD! Two years ago, that was a total no-no, as my body was a mess and not ready to handle the onslaught of the pepperoni or the pizza dough or the cheese (all of which I react to where my symptoms flare up).

Today, however, I can have some once in a while and be pretty much ok because:

  1. I know EXACTLY how it affects me.
  2. I know EXACTLY how much I can have and how often, to stay balanced and not let my symptoms come back full force.
  3. I know EXACTLY how to support my body afterwards to reverse the effects pretty quickly, within a day or so, so I can get on with it.

And that’s what I want you to be able to do.

If you live with an autoimmune condition, food allergies are a fact of life. If this is news to you, please read this fully!

The “chicken and egg” conundrum comes in because:

(a) Autoimmune means your body has started treating some foods as allergies / intolerances / sensitivities (these are different things) even if you were never allergic to those foods to begin with, usually because, now, your digestive system (which is intimately connected to your immune system) is compromised at a deeper level, and;

(b) When you eat these foods you make the Autoimmune condition worse, which may cause you to become allergic / reactive to even more foods.

And so, which comes first? The Autoimmune condition or the food allergies?

When it comes to Autoimmune, we need to stop thinking in a linear fashion, in straight lines, as in “A happens, then B happens.” It’s more of a circle, see. Think of all the letters in the alphabet strung together like on a necklace clasped around your neck. A, C, P, T are happening at the same time and they might all lead to B and even back to C and P again.

EVERYTHING IS CONNECTED in your body. Autoimmune doesn’t just pop up overnight although it may seem like it (that’s how it showed up for me). If your head hurts and your feet hurt, these are not two disconnected, random symptoms.

And what complicates things even further is that no two people tend to react the same way or have the same symptoms.

For example, when I eat pepperoni pizza, I wake up with a puffy face and puffy hands, my ribcage gets sore around the lower edges and it hurts to breathe, I get a bit short of breath, and usually I start wheezing too. (And, yes, I have no shame or qualms about sharing this…) my stool gets whacked out – but even how that shows up is changing nowadays so I need to pay attention. (FUN! =) But for you, your reaction-causing foods and your symptoms are likely to be different.

The trick is to KNOW YOUR BODY.

YOU know your body best. Not your doctor, not me, not your mom. YOU.

For months, I tracked all my symptoms. I had almost 10 whole pages, typed out, of symptoms. At one point, it was so bewildering because my symptoms would change weekly, sometimes daily. Some would appear only once, such as my legs swelling up from the knees on down, and some were absolute constants, such as the pain in my feet, or tingling and numbness in my hands, arms, legs, and feet. These days, I don’t need to write it all down because now tracking these connections comes naturally; it’s become second nature because I tracked them diligently earlier.

In time, you will start noticing trends and you’ll get to know the signals your body is sending you. You’ll see which choices seem to affect which symptoms show up, whether it’s how much or how well you sleep, exercising too much or too little, inability to express anger, nervous or happy stress, some of your food (either what you’re having OR what you’re not having!). It really can be anything, as this is just life. It’s a circle. Everything is connected.

The point is, you can get your symptoms under control but it’s up to YOU.

If you ever need help figuring it out, you know who to call. =)

May 2, 2009 at 11:12 AM Leave a comment

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