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Our Menu for the Week of May 27, 2013

Posted by on May 27, 2013 in Menu Planning, Nutrition, Our Menu | Comments Off on Our Menu for the Week of May 27, 2013

If you’ve been following my blog over the past year, you’ve probably noticed changes in our menu (more vegetarian, gluten free and paleo recipes). I have a huge passion for food, nutrition and health. I’m constantly reading new research articles on these topics and is one of the main reason for some of the changes or ingredients I use on a regular basis.

I believe food is our fuel and the way to heal, promote and grow our bodies in a natural way. For our family, its not about organic, it’s about simple whole foods that keep an active toddler healthy and a mama and daddy fueled to keep up with him. :) Although, I have some pantry items that are organic, I strive to keep our frig and freezer stocked with whole foods no matter if they are organic or not.

We in no way have a perfect diet, we have little treats here and there too.  Just this past weekend, I enjoyed cake at a birthday party and flat bread pizza from Chili’s on Sunday after church. :) So with that being said, you’ll see some new menu recipes or ingredients around here. If you are on a nutrition journey like our little family, I hope the recipe links I share each week, help you too! :)

On another quick note, the past 8 weeks have been quite busy around here with my little family, going to school and enjoying getting together with friends weekly. It’s not to surprising that these few changes have diminished my time online here on my blog. I’m so thankful for each one of you who stop by regularly (and those who visit for the first time). Now that I’m in more of a routine, starting on Friday I’ll be starting a new little blog series and I’d love you to come back by then! Until then, have a lovely week friends!

Planning ahead

Here is our menu.

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Snacks

Make ahead

Do you have any nutrition or health goals you and your family are trying to reach? If so I’d love to hear about them! 

Sharing today at Menu Plan Monday. 

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Guest Post: Cancer Patients Can Get Creative with Grilled Recipes for a More Nutritious Diet

Posted by on Sep 19, 2012 in Nutrition | 1 comment

I am thrilled to share with you all today my first guest post.

Jillian McKee is a contributing writer and Complementary Medicine Advocate at the Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance.  She has a passion to educate families and individuals with devestating diagnosis’ like Mesothelioma.

I’m  passionate about healthy eating and entertaining! With that being said, I’m ecstatic to share with you all today what Jillian has beautifully written for you!

Jillian the stage is yours!

Grilling foods provides a smoky, mesquite flavor to meats, vegetables, and even recipes for rustic casseroles, baked beans, and whole wheat breads.  Topping a grilled chunk of whole wheat French bread with melted provolone or swiss cheese provides a wonderful snack loaded with calcium that will be both delicious and nutritious for people who are fighting cancer.

Many physicians recommend that cancer patients stick to a nutritious diet in order to maintain strength and energy. However, it is important to get creative and have fun creating recipes for grilled foods that will be appetizing and nutritious.

Mesothelioma and other forms of cancer impact a person’s energy levels.  In addition to this, emotional trauma, physical trauma, and financial stress often result from cancer.  Each of these things combined make it all the more important for a healthy and balanced diet to be a consistent part of a person’s life.

Coming up with fun and tasty grilling recipes for vegetables, breads, and main entrees will provide a positive, creative outlet.  Having a fun and creative outlet is important to boost self-confidence and provide a healthy stress-reliever.

Grilling delicious foods that are high in protein, nutrients, and calcium will provide multiple benefits for people who are fighting cancer.  Friends and family members can get involved and plan outside dinner parties or family dinners. This is a great way to give support and encouragement to a person who has cancer.  The social gatherings and conversations over a good meal will also be important and beneficial.

Grilling dinner parties are an excellent way to combine a social gathering to lift the moods and provide a fun evening for a person who has cancer.  Grilling vegetable kabobs loaded with butternut squash, cherry tomatoes, red onions, and zucchini is a good way to cook vegetables in a way that is appealing and delicious.

Vegetarian po’ boys can be prepared by putting fresh corn, tomatoes, onions, potatoes, and peppers into aluminum foil pouch.  Once the food is snugly wrapped in an aluminum foil pouch, simply place the pouches on the grill and let it cook until the vegetables are tender.  Meals such as this can be followed up with grilled apples and fresh strawberries topped with whipped cream.  Blended berry smoothies also provide for a cool and delicious dessert that is high in nutrients and antioxidants.

There are multiple ways to grill healthy and delicious foods that can provide many health benefits to people who are fighting cancer.  Having grilling parties also gives people with cancer a way to enjoy their friends and family without getting too tired and overwhelmed when they are tired and ill from the disease.

In the United States alone, it is estimated that cancer affects 1,638,910 people. I’m sure that many of you, my readers, have a friend or loved one suffering from a form of cancer. We have an amazing opportunity to make delicious healthy food for them and have a little get together to enhance their tough moment in life.

I can attest that having a family member suffer and surcome to cancer is difficult. But friends get out there, enjoy these days of warm weather and grill up some great food and laughter with your friends or family members!

If you’d like more information on Mesothieloma or more information about Jillian please check out her writings here.

Thank You Jillian for a great post!

 Sources:

American Cancer Society 

American Institue for Cancer Research

Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance 

Do you have any questions for Jillian? Leave them in the comments today!  

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5 Healthy Convenient Foods When Traveling with a Toddler

Posted by on Jun 8, 2012 in Nutrition | Comments Off on 5 Healthy Convenient Foods When Traveling with a Toddler

Good Morning Friends! How are you all doing? I hope you’ve had a great week.  We were quite busy around here, we are definitely looking forward to a nice relaxing weekend.

 My son loves food, you can tell by the above picture how happy he is about his food!  And probably like most children, when they are hungry but fastened securely into a car-seat looking at the cows go by for hours, having convenient food is a must! But the problem, as I mentioned last week, is its hard to find nutritious convenient foods sometimes. Now I believe that whole food sources is the best way to obtain essential nutrients, but I also know that life is busy sometimes so products that manufactures make can be helpful also.  Today I  want to share some of the foods we found to be convenient and healthy options for our family when we were traveling.

#1. Broccoli

Toddlers typically can’t eat salads with green leafy vegetables (unless you can puree them into a smoothie), where they could get calcium, iron and Vitamin C.   But a vegetable that contains those nutrients is broccoli.  Every night we would go to a sit down restaurant for dinner and Little Buddy would get a side of steamed broccoli. Go Broccoli!

#2. Yogurt

A good percentage (about 70%) of your immune system lives in your GI track.  This one reason why food is so important to our health. Eating yogurt replenishes the good bacteria to ward off the bad bacteria, helping you fight off any invader!  And when your traveling it might be the best thing to eat once a day. :) We would either buy greek yogurt at the grocery store and eat it then.  Also, some of the hotels we stayed at, had a continental breakfast and we would often enjoy a serving of yogurt. :)

#3. Kiwi

Little Buddy LOVES kiwi!  They travel very well, we did kept them in a cooler. They are very inexpensive fruit and they have super powers. :)  Well they might not have super powers but they do have a super anti-oxidant called Vitamin C! Alxeandria Hardy a Registered Dietitian says, ” One serving of kiwi gives the body 230% of the RDA for Vitamin C, which helps heal wounds, increases iron absorption, and boost the immune system.” She goes on in her article that other health benefits include: prevention of constipation, decrease the risk for heart disease and repairs DNA. To read her article in detail click here. Go Kiwi!

# 4. Granola Bars

Okay, I know that depending on your health preferences granola bars might not be the most healthy.  But I have to say I love these granola bars.  Each bar contains 70 calories, 3 grams of fiber and 9 grams of sugar.  I feel comfortable giving him a little sweetness because these little granola bars have no artificial sweeteners. We would give Little buddy half a granola bar per sitting.  They travel well of course and when you need a  quick snack for a little one, they are a crowd pleaser. :) I can hear him say, uummmm for yum.

#5. Happy Tot Organic Super Food

Lastly who ever invented this awesome baby food pouch is amazing! I could just hug them for making this so nice for all of us moms out there!  I was able to pick up quite a few of them on sale at Target before we left for our trip. Any time we are at the store now and we walk down the baby food aisle  my son wants to dive out of the cart to reach them!  So he apparently loves them.  Mom approved and toddler approved!

And there you have it, our 5 healthy toddler foods that were convenient for us when we were traveling.

What are some of your favorite travel foods for children? I’d love to hear them! I know we will take another road trip again soon. :) 

Resources for this post:

Super Baby Food by Ruth Yaron

Super Kids Nutrition 

Note: these are foods that we believe to be healthy choices for our son. Each toddler has their own dietary needs and requirements and I encourage you to talk with your pediatrician about recommendations for your child. 

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5 Convenient Healthy Foods

Posted by on Jun 1, 2012 in Nutrition | 4 comments

Good morning Friends!  Can you believe we are half way through the year! Where did the last six months go! It really flew by for us.

When we were traveling in May, I was shocked at how hard it was to find convenient nutritious foods.  We were tempted by hamburgers from fast food restaurants and chocolate chip cookies (my personal favorite!), but my husband and I really wanted to try to eat as healthy as possible.

Today I want to share with you the five foods, we found convenient and healthy for our family, while we were traveling.

#1. Naked 100% Juice Smoothie

I love smoothies.  I love making them because you can get a lot of nutrients in one 8 ounce glass!  But when your traveling you can’t carry a blender and 10 items of veggies and supplements.  So the next best thing is: Naked Juice.  My husband and I had one of these once a day.  It tastes amazing, little buddy loved it too!  It does have some different ingredients in it but we really enjoyed them.  I found them at just about every gas station we stopped.  I even saw that some Starbucks carry them. They were cheaper in a grocery store, but the price was worth the convenience and nutrition that each bottle has.

#2. Avocado

Avocado is one of my favorite fruits.  They are packed with Vitamins B,E, K and potassium.  Studies have shown when you consume moderate amounts of healthy fats found in avocado, it can help reduce your risk of heart disease.  When we stopped at a grocery store along the way, I picked up a couple and kept them in a cooler.  Little buddy and I would just eat them right out of the peal. :) Whenever we could get avocado as an added topping to a salad or sandwich, we asked for it.

#3. Hard Boiled Eggs

Every continental breakfast we had, offered hard boiled eggs.  We also found them easily at grocery stores in the speciality deli section. Some gas stations like Quik Trip had them in the deli section also. Another great way to get a hard boiled egg is order a yummy cobb salad.  My husband ordered that almost everyday.  So what are the benefits of eggs? Well there is protein of course but another great nutrient that lives in eggs is choline. One benefit from choline is it can help with memory. You can learn a little bit more about choline here.

#4. Nuts and Dried Cranberries

I picked up a box of unsalted mixed nuts (although the ones I photographed had salt) and a bag of dried cranberries from Costco before we left.  These were great on the road snacks in between lunch and dinner stops! :) Little buddy only had the cranberries, he’s still to little for nuts. Nuts are another way to make your heart healthy.  The unsaturated fats, omega-3s, and fiber are just a few of the nutrients packed in this little bites of goodness! The Mayo Clinic has a great resource to read about the health benefits of nuts if you want more information you can read it here.

#5. Green Leafy Vegetables

Iron, calcium, vitamin c and fiber are just a few nutrients found in green leafy veggies.  This is one health reason we tried to have at least one salad a day when we were on the road.  We stopped at a Safeway one time for lunch, picked out salads to eat and had a picnic. :)

Well here is our 5 convenient and healthy foods we aimed to consume each day when we were on our trip.  We did have some splurges, (oh, if there was no such thing as chocolate chip cookies!) but overall we ate pretty well on our fly-by-the-seat-of-our-pants trip. :)

Next week I’ll be sharing with you 5 convenient healthy foods for toddlers when you are traveling! :)

What are some healthy foods you eat on the go? 

 

Nutrition resources for this post came from the following sources: 

http://www.avocado.org/avocados-and-your-heart/

http://www.cholineinfo.org/healthcare_professionals/overview.asp

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/nuts/HB00085

http://www.draxe.com/video/top-5-superfoods-for-a-healthy-pregnancy/

 

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