Jack Johnson Inspired {Five Ingredient} Banana Pancakes

Did you celebrate Pancake Tuesday?!
Give me a day where breakfast becomes dinner (or any meal for that matter) and I’m on board! Though it may not be raining outside, it is devilishly cold and with a cue from Jack Johnson it is the perfect day to snuggle in and make warm, fluffy, golden banana pancakes like it’s the weekend.
pancakes
  • With being in the office all morning and out for dinner and a movie last night, this delicious stack found its way to my table for lunch. In no way does being a health food junkie mean that you have to forgo this tradition, quite the opposite! With the right batter, pancakes can be a healthy treat too. But first, see how the conventional pancakes stack up compared to these Banana pancakes with all the reasons to flip the skillet over for this golden stack! And please, my fellow readers, while you “close the curtains and forget the world outside”, always remember my…
 6 Rules To Practise Safe Stacks:
 1) If it’s in a box.. It should stay in a box
  • Don’t be fooled by fancy “organic” or “gluten-free” stamps on these products. If there is a “just add water” it’s generally not something you want to be adding to your diet and with five blended ingredients, these pancakes are nearly as fast.
2) Skim the dairy and use dairy free substitutes
  • Coconut oil for butter (though these pancakes are oil free)
  • Dairy free milk (except for soy or almond milk in this case)
  • Why not almond milk? Heating will cause the unstable fats to go rancid.
3) Skip the sugar!
  • Most pancake recipes call for sugar which is simply put: a recipe for disaster. The rush of glucose will spike your insulin and cause cravings and energy slumps post stack.
  • This recipe uses both bananas and berries as a base and therefore is sweet enough on its own

Jack Johnson

~ Above toppings: banana ice-cream, gogi berries, dusted in cinnamon ~

4) The perfect pair

  • I’ve heard so much hype about the two ingredient pancakes lately involving just : eggs & banana. However, fruit and meat products flip-up major distress in your digestive system. Opposites do not attract in this situation and should not be paired together.
5) Oil wisely
  • Pancakes are cooked and should be done so with the right oils as the wrong ones will go rancid from the heat. The oils to use:
  • coconut, avocado, or grapeseed
 
6) Top it off
  • Skip the heavy helping of syrup which will spike your insulin. I love maple syrup and usually enjoy a drizzle on one of my pancakes.
  • The rest I top with: nutbutters, coconut oil or coconut butter, applesauce, banana ice-cream (which melts over hot pancakes!), warmed berries, gogi berries, cinnamon
  • Banana ice cream recipe here: https://lifeofeden.com/2014/10/16/pumpkin-pie-oats-with-cinnamon-ice-cream/
The Highlights:
  • Dairy-free
  • Gluten-free
  • Sugar-free
  • Egg-free
  • Vegan
  • Properly food combined
  • Oil free

blueberry pancakes

Flippin’ Good Jack Johnson Inspired Pancakes:
There are many variations of these simple pancakes utilizing different flours, milks and berries but this is my favourite one so far.
Ingredients:
  • 1 Banana
  • 1 Cup oat flour (ground oat flakes)
  • 1 Cup quinoa milk (you can use other non-dairy options) (I did half water half milk and they still turned out great)
  • 1/3 cup berries (fresh or frozen) (my personal favourite was blueberries)
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract

Instructions:

  • Blend all ingredients together except for the berries
  • once blended, gently fold in the berries and spoon onto a hot pan
  • Cook using a little oil to grease the pan (either coconut, grapeseed or avocado oil)  until the top loses its shine and a few bubbles will appear
  • They should be golden brown in colour and flip easily to cook for a few minutes more.

The outside will be golden and crispy with a soft banana centre and loaded with berries!

So, had you forgotten about Pancake Tuesday, and only found out via the pancake pictures frying your Instagram page, then you can forgo the main course tonight and dish out a healthy serving of pancakes for dinner!
Flipping up a holistic stack of Pancake Wednesdays,
Suzanne Eden

The Open Heart Yoga Series & The Anatomy of Heart Break

“There is a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in.”

~ Leonard Cowen

Ask Eden: “Could you post poses that help to open up a broken heart and help it heal?”

Absolutely!

And just in time for Valentine’s Day ❤

  • When thinking of repairing a broken heart, take the analogy of a muscle in yoga: every time we stretch, we make micro tears in the muscles. When they heal, they become stronger and more flexible. In order to grow, we need to stretch and tear a little bit. The same is true for your heart which, after all, is a muscle. Exercising the heart, leaving it open, makes it vulnerable, but every metaphorical rip and tear, with the proper healing, is an opportunity to expand, to enlarge and grow stronger.

An open heart is vulnerable but the heart is a muscle; it’s durable, self-healing, resilient.

The Anatomy Of A Broken Heart
  • Our emotions manifest in our physical body. When we experience heart-break, our shoulders often round and we stoop slightly forward with a hunched back as though we are physically shielding the heart. Just as our heart compresses, our bodies compress. This posture, in turn, sends feedback via our nervous system to our brains affirming a lack of confidence and we are less likely to be happy.
  • Alternatively, by opening up our chest cavity, we can begin to send the signal to our brains that we are open and this creates a cascade of positive feelings. This may first, however, create a flood of emotion if you have been hoarding feelings within.
The Heart Opener Yoga Series:
  •  Yoga has that powerful knack for bringing emotions to the surface, for ringing out our emotional toxins. By physically opening our chest cavities, these postures will help to open the inner heart and break down our barriers so that we can feel and once we feel it all, we can begin to heal it all.
  • To delve deep into yourself and your emotions; it is best to do a longer practise. It gives your body time to warm up, to soften and release barriers and your mind will slow and become quiet. This is where the magic happens.
  • Note: If you do not have experience with these postures, seek assistance from your yoga instructor for proper form. Each pose should feel good! If there is any pain, gently ease out of the asana and always listen to your body.
Also Note: By scrolling your cursor over the images, they will take full colour to showcase the photography by Lauren Leprich.
Pose11Version1
Pose7
Upward-facing Dog
Urdhva Mukha Svanasana
Pose3Version1
Crescent Lunge
Anjaneyasana
Pose8
Wild Thing
Camatkarasana
means “the ecstatic unfolding of the enraptured heart.”
Pose5Version1
Upward Bow (Wheel) Pose
Urdhva Dhanurasana
Pose2
Camel Pose
Ustrasana
Pose9Version2
 P.s.
As it turns out, the Princess Bride happens to be a brilliant heart opener too!
Wishing you all a LOVEly Valentines,
Suzanne Eden ❤

10 Reasons Every Girl Needs a Bouquet of Kale!

Oh kale yeah!

I love flowers but what’s more desirable than a bouquet of something  big, beautiful and edible?! Dark, leafy greens not sweet enough? It is, in fact, through the winter and early spring that kale is in season and at its sweetest. Besides, kale will help your beloved to live longer so you can be together and what’s more romantically sappy than that? The ultimate vase? A holistic foodies one true love (sorry boys), a Vitamix blender!  If there’s one thing to love this Valentines Day, it’s a kale bouquet and here are the top reasons why every girl needs one (if only just for fun)!

kale

1. The most bang for your buck

  • More nutrient value for fewer calories than nearly any other food! And more affordable and useable than a bouquet of roses.

 

2. Reduces cancer risk

  • This reduction has been linked to 5 different types of cancer: bladder, breast, colon, ovary, and prostate. So sure your girl friend doesn’t have a prostate, but you do! And I’m sure that after receiving a gift like this, she’d be more than happy to share 😉

 

3. Detoxifies your genes

  • New research has correlated the Isothiocyanates (ITCs) made from kale’s glucosinolates to detoxification at a genetic level. And speaking of genes...

 

4. Helps you fit those skinny jeans

  • This leafy green will provide you with copious amounts of vitamins and minerals to reduce inflammation, alkalinize and support your weight loss goals.

 

5. Over 45 different flavonoids

  • Antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits which reduce chronic inflammation and oxidative stress.

 

6. Vitamin K

  • Contains nearly twice the amount of vitamin K as most of its cruciferous counterparts with a 1-cup serving supplying you with over 1,000 micrograms, approximately 10Xs the recommended minimum daily amount!
  • Note: This refers mainly to vitamin K1. It’s important to ingest sources of K2 as well.

7. Beefing up the iron

  • More iron per calorie than beef! And speaking of cows…

8. Calcium

  • More calcium, per calorie, than cow’s milk!

9. LOVE-ly skin

  • Rich in vitamin A and omega-3 fatty acids for youthful, glowing skin, without the gift of a pricey cosmetics bottle!

10. Get cozy!

  • You don’t want to be sleeping in separate beds this Valentines Day do you? Keep the winter sicknesses at bay. The vitamin C content will help to boost the immune system.

 

With a superfood like this, what’s not to love? And why not pair the bouquet with some strawberry flowers? You can find the instructions on the board Holistic Valentines on my pinterest page here: https://www.pinterest.com/Lifeofeden/holistic-valentines/

An edible bouquet in hand this Valentine’s Day is your guaranteed ticket to melt any wellness junkies edible heart!

Taking a bite of a delicious & nutritious Valentines,

Suzanne Eden

10 Reasons Jimmy Fallon Is Good Health Insurance!

Ever needed a reason to watch more Jimmy Fallon? Don’t make me laugh! But seriously (or not so seriously)…

As it turns out, laughter is fantastic medicine!

Prescription for wellness: one heaping dose as often as possible every single day!

Naturally occurring sources: Laughter occurs abundantly in each episode of the Jimmy Fallon show, also amongst your household pet, richly in youtube videos and generously in gatherings of family and friends. Indulge liberally.

fallon

Here is every excuse you need with 10 reasons to take Jimmy Fallon in big, heaping doses:

1. Better than a stress ball

  • Laughing relaxes muscles in the body and eases stress in the mind

2. Builds heat

  • It improves circulation and stimulates the flow of lymph to detoxify

3. Beat the blues

  • Laughing releases the “feel good” endorphins in our brains to reduce depression and anxiety and keep you in a positive mindset

4. Better than morphine

  • These same endorphins are natural painkillers while boosting your mood!

5. Workout on the couch!

  • Not in replacement to your regular ACTIVE-ist routine, but one study found that laughing brought on by a comedy film was shown to have the improvements of blood flow that a typical 15-20 minute workout may offer. And what does this do for us? It strengthens our blood vessels to reduce heart attacks and strokes!
  • It also raises energy expenditure, increases heart rate, burns calories and, as we all know, is a very effective ab routine!

6. Better than cough syrup

  • Laughter boosts the immunity by increasing the body’s antibodies to destroy viruses and tumour cells – without the bitter aftertaste

7. Sweet dreaming

  • Boosts ability to fall asleep, improves the quality of sleep, and can help to relieve insomnia

8. Deep breaths

  • Has aerobic effects that increase your body‘s ability to utilize oxygen and detoxify the lungs
  • P.S.; more oxygen to the brain = improved memory and creativity!

9. Energizer

  • This you can feel: laughter energizes the body through increased blood flow and by raising your natural vibration

10. Boosts Creativity

  • In a funk? This may be exactly what you need. Laughter puts us in a relaxed and joyful state where creativity flourishes!

ACTIVEist: laughter now meets yoga in.. well.. laughter yoga! And although I have yet to attempt this style, I’m sure it’s effective. Laughter, after all, is infectious. How? Anothers’ laughter activates the premotor cortical region of your brain, involved in moving your facial muscles to correspond with the sound and reciprocate.

Haven’t had your daily dose yet? Jimmy Fallon absent from your t.v.? Check out one of my all time favourites! :

//www.youtube.com/watch?v=RP4abiHdQpc

Whether it be Jimmy Fallon or your own best friend;

Your new prescription for wellness: get laughing every damn day!

Suzanne Eden

Wanderlust Wednesday // Ten Awesome Facts You Didn’t Know About Avocados For The ACTIVEists And Avocado Addicts Alike

There are two omens of a good day in my family:
1) Metallica playing over the radio 
Often the courtesy of our local rock station 97.7 htzfm.
2) The holy grail of the perfect avocado 
Rich, vibrant green, impeccably even, almost juicy looking avocado that lends its way to being eaten entirely on its own. Nothing better is there?
avo
  • This Wanderlust Wednesday is taking a foodie spin with a staple in our home and one of every nutritionist’s favourite superfoods! Yesterday morning I woke early to grab my yoga mat and teach classes to grade ones through the school board and needed a quick breakfast. The perfect fix: avocado topped with a sprinkling of Himalayan salt and spicy red pepper flakes.
  • We typically have half an avocado a day through the week (with weekends reserved for ripening a new bunch on the countertops) and for good reason! Avocados contain vitamins A, C, E, and K and are packed full of antioxidants to protect your skin from environmental damage and the harsh winter winds. This is your complete guide from the ACTIVEist to the avocado addicts alike, with 10 things you didn’t know about the Alligator Pear!

 

eights

 

1. Avocados are a fruit

2. The Doctrine Of Signatures
  • There’s a nifty little thing in the nutritional sciences called the doctrine of signatures that shows how the shape of food corresponds to the organ it benefits. Avocados are shaped like the female reproductive system and what’s more, they take exactly 9 months to grow!

 

3. The Alligator Pear

  • Beyond the doctrine of signatures, the look of the avocado was also used to determine its name. It’s alternatively called the alligator pear because of the scaly exterior and its unique pear shape.

 

4. An Aztec Symbol

  • Avocado trees will produce the biggest fruit when paired with a neighbouring tree to pollinate and the fruit typically grows in pairs making them an Aztec symbol of love and fertility. ❤
  • The Name of the avocado is derived from the Aztec word “ahuacatl.”

 

5. The Banana Peel

  • The highest concentration of carotenoids occur in the darkest flesh just beneath the skin. To reap the most of these antioxidants, peel your avocados like you would a banana.
  • The method: Slice the avocado down the middle so that the pit is intact. Gently twist to separate the halves and peel away.

 

6. The perfect salad companion

  •  Due to the healthy fats, one cup of fresh avocado (150 grams) added to a salad of romaine lettuce, spinach, and carrots was shown to increase absorption of carotenoids from the salad between 200-400%(!) as referenced by WHF.

salad

7. One Mans Superfood May Not Be Anothers

  • Some blood types are said to react to avocados and some people have trouble digesting the fats and may need the added support of digestive enzymes. The Key: see if it feels right for you.

8. Variety Is The Spice Of Life

  • There are over 500 different varieties. According to WHF, 95% of all avocados grown in the United States are produced in California and the Avocado California Commission (who knew!) states that approximately 95% of the total crop each year comes from the Hass variety.

 

9. Holistic Life Hacks

  • Avocados make excellent replacements for heavy creams in wholesome soups as they have a rich, creamy texture.

 

updog

10. The ACTIVEist

For a simple, easy yoga practise, avocados make for a great breakfast when eaten 1-2 hours before your session. I typically suggest monomeals (or simple meals) as I covered here: https://lifeofeden.com/2014/08/20/5-minute-mango-sorbet-the-simplicity-of-health/
If going for an intense practice, we need to focus more on building our glycogen stores and avocados may not be enough. For a light teaching of back to back classes, however, yesterday’s avocado was perfect. Heres why:
  • Mono meals allow for easy digestion to feel lighter in yoga postures

 

  • The essential fatty acids (the good fats) in avocados provide sustainable energy for low intensity exercise

 

  •  These fats also help to satiate the body so you don’t become hungry part way through (a growling stomach is, after all, a little distracting while lying in savasana)

 

  • The essential fatty acids are anti-inflammatory aiding in the body’s recovery post workout.

 

Whether it be as a pre workout snack or fuel for the day ahead, avocados are a food to love!

Wishing you all the perfect avocado omen,

Suzanne Eden