Six Ways To Think Globally By Eating Locally

You’re a car pooler, an HOV lane local, a savvy  navigator of public transportation.

You are fully aware of the impact of gas emissions on our environment and carefully manage your ecological footprint, but did you ever consider the mileage on your plate?

 local

The average meal now travels around 1500km from farm to table according to David Suzuki. That is one costly road trip for the produce and environment alike. To put this into perspective, from MindBodyGreen, that means the average North American meal composed of some meat, grain, fruits and veggies, uses 4 to 17 times more petroleum if buying conventional versus buying local ingredients.

Take a look at your breakfast this morning. Where did it come from? Was it picked fresh from your garden, plucked from the your local fruit stands, or pulled from the grocery store aisles? Most supermarkets are supplied by global (national and international) farmers, whereas local growers are based right in the region, reducing the cost of gas, while fueling the community.  Buying locally from farmers markets and fruit stands is a simple, nutritious and delicious means to support our environment and our local economies. Here’s how:

  1. Fueling the food systems
  • The global system uses anywhere from 4 to 7 times as much fuel for transportation, and produces 5 to 17 times more CO2 emissions than regional or local food systems, according to Cornell University.
  • The Center for Agricultural Business reported that in California alone, more
    than 485,000 truckloads of fresh fruit and vegetables leave the state
    every year and travel from 100 to 2,100 miles to reach their destinations.
  • What you can do:
    • When buying local, the gas emissions from transportation are dramatically reduced. It is simply you driving, or better yet, walking or biking, and the transport from farm to the fruit stands.

fruit stand

2. More Nutritional Bang For your Buck

  • Conventional produce is picked before its prime to avoid spoiling on the long distance it travels for distribution to supermarkets.
  • Furthermore, fresh food can lose up to 50% of nutrients 3-5 days after harvest. So if our food is lacking nutrients in the first place, then is losing many of these nutrients on the way to our dinner tables, we’re losing a large portion of what we were wanting in the first place; valuable  vitamins and minerals. Thinking globally, we all know the vast expense of health care and the more we incorporate fruits and vegetables rich with nutrients, the more we access the power of preventative health care!
  • What you can do;
    • When you buy locally, you are getting the full spectrum of nutrients from fresh produce, picked ripe from the vines and sold directly to you to diminish nutrient depletion.

3. The Price Is Right

  • Generally far cheaper, as the money is going directly to the support of your local growers. There is no watering down costs to distribute to drivers, the supermarket sellers etc. This money is most likely recycled back into your community to benefit jobs on a local level.

 

eat local

4. TASTE!

  • I’m willing to bet that the main reason so many people think they don’t like veggies is because they aren’t having the true, flavourful vegetable. Take the taste test yourself, particularly with a tomato. What is hard, flavourless and more reminiscent of a rubber ball than a healthful food sold in supermarkets, is plump, juicy and nutritious when picked ripe. We are absolutely spoiled to live in the fruit belt and have a garden overflowing with heirloom tomatoes, but all you need is a visit to your local grower to reap the real taste.
  • Where does this lack of taste “stem” from? Take a look at the freelance article I wrote for EcoEating here: http://ecoeating.ca/case-of-the-tasteless-tomato/

 

5. Less waste

  • Globally, close to half of all food produced is wasted according to David Suzuki. Take the summer strawberry for instance where the average total loss from harvest to the consumer’s table is estimated to be more than 40%!
  • Holistic life hacks;
    • Ask for “seconds” at your local fruit stand. As the misfits of the fruit stands, seconds don’t look as pretty, may be sporting a few bruise spots that need to be sliced off or have an irregular shape. 30% of fruits and vegetables don’t make it onto North American superstore shelves for this very reason. By purchasing these perfectly good fruits, you will save yourself money and also decrease the waste of them potentially being tossed away.

 

veggie basket

6. Better Biodiversity

  • Smaller run, local farmers are far more likely to utilize the practises of crop rotation for more sustainable agriculture. This means rotating many varieties of crops which makes them more resilient against disease without using pesticides and promotes healthy soil. Conventional produce on the other hand, is often the practise of mono-culture which creates a vast host of issues leading to a need for increased pesticide use.

 

There are SO many perks to going local that extend beyond this list, from developing a greater sense of connection to our food, to getting one on one interactions and making friendships unlike you would in the grocery line. Instead of a quick “hello”, scan through of food, grab your money and go scenario, local farms encourage an open and friendly atmosphere and many of the workers work all week. It’s the ample opportunity to grow friendships while you grab your fresh picked peaches.

Diets rich in nutritious fruits and vegetables are cooperatively the healthiest for ourselves and the environment. This is true plan(e)t powered eating.  Fresher, tastier and better for both the consumer and local communities, you have every reason you need to grab your reusable shopping bags and head out to your local farmers market!

Suzanne Eden

Seven Ingredient Chunky Monkey Superfood Cookies

Craving a cookie after all of the sweet treat teasing we’ve been through this week?

In the name of guilt free and bakery’s, these cookies can be whipped up in minutes, are soft, chewy and naturally sweet.

  • With cookies, chocolate chip in particular, being one of the all time most popular desserts, these Chunky Monkey Cookies forego all of the classic wheat, sugars, corn starch and dairy so that I can give you full, nutritionist approved permission to go right ahead and even eat the batter!

In  conclusion to a week of sweet talking, these are your bite sized, guilt free indulgences to treat yourself to today.

 chunky monkey

3 Reasons To Go Banana’s

1. Flour free & refined sugar-free
  • Completely free of refined flours and sugars which are devoid of nutrients and spike our blood sugar with a subsequent crash. Ever felt the sudden rise of energy directly after eating sweets, only to be caught snoozing with you head on the table the next? That’s your blood sugar talking!
  • Instead of refined sugars, we owe this cookies sweetness to the whole food; bananas. Where 12 grams of of sugar are in just one tablespoon of table sugar, a quarter cup of mashed banana contains less than 7 grams!
  • Quick tip: making sure they are brown and spotted is to ensure that they are more alkaline to the body and make a sweeter cookie.
2) Makes just 4 a batch
  • Portion control at its finest! Most cookie recipes make around 2-3 dozen cookies, a lot of temptation to have hanging around in reuseable food containers on the countertops. 4 cookies makes just enough for you to enjoy without going overboard.
3) 7 Wholefood ingredients
  • All of which you are more than likely to have as staples in your holistic cabinet. With just seven, wholesome ingredients and minimal time to make, these are easy to whip up whenever you have a craving for a sweet treat.

Chunky Monkey Superfood Cookies

Adventure level: 2/5

Yields 4 cookies per batch

Ingredients:

  • 1 mashed banana
    • Making sure its ripe and spotted brown to ensure sweetness!
  • 1/4 C gluten-free rolled oats (I like Bob Redmills)
  • 2 TBSP unsweetened coconut flakes
    • Also look for sulphite free
  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • 1/4 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/8-1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • Sprinkling of sea salt
  • Handful of gogi berries, dark chocolate chips or crushed pecans (I used a combo of all three!)

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350
  • Combine all ingredients together, mixing well
  • Spoon onto a baking sheet forming cookie shapes and gently flatten the top
  • Bake 15-20 minutes, let cool 10 minutes

Cookies that aren’t monkeying around on taste or nutrition, enjoy!

Suzanne Eden

Restaurant In Review // Kelly’s Bake Shoppe; Burlington, ON

This is love at first bite.

It’s not everyday that you stumble upon a bakery brimming with your holistic morals. So in the name of bringing you the most intimate reviews, I had to savour as many goodies as possible… for quality assurance purposes of course!

Kellys bake shop

Located in downtown Burlington, these tasty creations are designed to be dairy-free, gluten-free, soy-free, egg-free, butter-free, casein-free, preservative-free, peanut-free, vegan and composed of organic, fair-trade ingredients, with natural colours sourced from flower petals.

Here is where you realise that real ingredients are cause for real flavour!

hiking

This Saturday marked my third trip to the bakery after reading that they served chocolate vanilla swirl soft serve! Something that I haven’t had since my days of dairy cones and summer road trips. So we made our own excursion to scout out Burlington boutiques, stroll the pier with our dairy-free ice cream and steal a few treats for our late night hike up the escarpment to catch the sunset (and a few mosquito bites in the process).

From decadent brownies to rich raspberry squares, wether or not you are near the area to be tempted into this adorable cafe, or looking for inspiration to whip yourself up a deliciously wholesome treat tonight,  allow me to give you a sneak peek into the whimsical world of Kelly’s Bake Shoppe!

kellys

The Bakery

  •  Surrounded by charming boutiques and outdoor gardens, Kelly’s Bake Shoppe is hard to miss from the swarms of health food and dessert enthusiasts alike. Created by a dynamic mother-daughter duo, it is evident the ingredients of love and passion are infused in every nook and cranny. From witty puns of sweet desserts, decorated with fragrant flowers, and the inviting and inspirational atmosphere begging to be every bloggers second home.
happiness
  • Stepping inside, you are welcomed to the smiles of exuberant employees (the sign of a passionate business), and the sounds of chatting customers and steaming of coconut milk cappuccinos. And then you feast your eyes on the line up of freshly baked goods scattered neatly along the countertops…
Muffins

The Decadent Desserts

You will be uprooted in a swirl of tempting treats, gawking at all of the possibilities and lost in a sea of frosting and donuts and soft serve but this is my MUST have for you: Snag yourself a triple fudge brownie! Rich, indulgent  and layered with a  creamy spread of chocolate frosting, their brownies crept their way into my dreams after my first stop here last year. If you love chocolate (and who doesn’t!) make this your go to.

triple fudge brownie

Now this Saturday, as any chocolate enthusiast would understand, it was a daring decision to trade in my usual brownie for a Raspberry Coconut Square, but this treat could make ANY chocoholic question their loyalty. It’s sweet, fruity, filled with raspberry jam and topped with golden toasted coconut. It is heavenly.

I have also had the pleasure of indulging in their Skinny Cookie which we bought to split over our soft serve. This one being geared as a breakfast cookie as it is entirely flour free and based with roasted bananas, oats and sunflower butter. The World Peace Cookie was also tasty when savoured with a coconut milk latte back when I first visited in the fall.
raspberry bar

What To Watch Out For

  •  In all of my chocolate-vanilla-swirl-soft-serve excitement, I failed to notice that it was based in soy. So though, yes, they do have soy-free options here, that does not mean that everything is soy-free. They do have binders to check all ingredients for you and are more than happy to answer any of your questions about your personal dietary needs.
soft serve
  • Though they are renowned for their cupcakes, many of these are extremely indulgent with some sporting their own donuts on top of a mountain of frosting. Though too much for me, they would make a good treat to split if you wanted to try one. Their award-winning Mile High Brownie is also something that I have not tried as that, too, is far too much for me, but I have a funny feeling that nobody would mind sharing 🙂
muriel

A Place For Non-Health Nuts?

Absolutely! These desserts taste far better than any gluten, dairy, soy, refined sugar and artificial baked goods. Truly. And the best part is that these treats, savoured in moderation, won’t leave your stomach in an uproar and your head in a fog. Bring your unassuming guinea pigs here, while shielding their eyes from the health food signs, and I guarantee you, they would never suspect a thing!

Want to try these for yourself?

Kelly’s Bake Shoppe and I are teaming up to give one of you a free cupcake and $25 gift card! Follow @lifeofeden and @kellysbake on Instagram to find out how you could win!
cupcakes
I can just image more of these health conscious cafés cropping up in towns and cities over the years, with many more of my reviews to inevitably follow in their footsteps, but those footsteps will have some big shoes to fill!
A sweet, gracious thank you to Kelly’s Bake Shoppe for your exceptional service, inviting atmosphere and dream inducing desserts. I’m sure I will be paying your bakery another visit very soon!
Sweet dreams of decadent desserts,
Suzanne Eden

Shark Weeks 6 Ways to Make Waves In Our Health And The Health Of Sharks

Whoever considered that soup could be a deadly concoction to both human beings of land and majestic creatures of the ocean? Or that liver oils and aphrodisiacs could heighten your mood but deflate a 4,000 pound predator of the deep?

~*~

With thoughts of shark week, holistic health may very well not be the first thing to swim into your mind (or even the last thing for that matter), but our everyday lifestyle choices affect the health of sharks just as much as they affect ours. These impressive creatures have been swimming the oceans for over 400 million years (100 million years before the first dinosaurs appeared on land) and have been contributing to the delicate interplay of our oceanic ecosystems ever since.

They are integral to our oceans and though recent news has surfaced with shark attacks on the rise, the shark population is on the decline, with Green Peace reporting that some species have declined over 95% in the last decade. The empowering news is that we DO have the power to protect these predators and much of it takes place on our plates!

jelly

Random FACTS of kindness:
Most shark species are docile and couldn’t give a shark’s fin about humans. What they DO care about is feeding their enormous bodies with seals which we so conveniently resemble as we’re floating in the water. Most shark attacks are not fatal because, just as you would a mushy apple, a shark takes one bite, realises we’re not what it thought we were and spits us out.  The unfortunate thing is that on the  jaws of a standard shark, this “test bite” is pretty substantial. But all things considered, sharks are really wonderful creatures and an important part of the sea. Turns out we don’t need to be as afraid of sharks as we should be afraid for them.

In honour of shark week, let me take you on a dive into the 6 ways that we can make waves in our health and the health of our sharks!

1) From bait to plate: Do not eat shark. EVER.

  • Have you ever tried shark? If not, you are missing out on one of the greatest sources of mercury you could eat from the sea! Sound appetizing? I have never been one to turn down a strange food experience but this would be one of them. With extremely high levels of mercury contamination and inhumane killing practises, we’re swimming in over our heads with each bite.
  • Mercury is a neurotoxin to both humans and animals and found in extremely high amounts in sharks. Pollution has dramatically increased the amount of mercury found in our water with The Whole Life Nutrition book stating that the top 100 meters of the ocean now has twice as much mercury as it did in the previous century. The larger and fattier the animal, the more this accumulates in the tissues with up to 9 million times the amount that’s found in the water, according to Mercola.
  • Predatorial fish (such as sharks) now contain 12 times the mercury they did during pre-industrial times. Why such large amounts? Sharks, being top-of-the-food-chain creatures, are eating other fish that are already contaminated, which causes the mercury to accumulate within their bodies. When we eat them, that mercury will accumulate in us.

Beware that shark can be disguised under other names such as flake, rock salmon, dog-fish, rigg or rock eel.

  • In Asia, shark fin soup is a delicacy but an indelicacy to sharks, who are cruelly killed for their fins (utilizing only 1-5% of the shark’s body weight) with the rest of their bodies being discarded back into the ocean (often with the shark still alive and left to bleed to death). The fresh fins can fish prices of up to $400 / kilogram according to wildaid.org.

RFOK (random facts of kindness):

Even with those tell-tale razor sharp teeth, sharks don’t actually chew their food but rather swallow them. As for us, we need to chew our food around 30-40 times for optimal digestion!

shark tank
2. Some-things a little fishy: Eat sustainably caught fish

  • So you’re not eating shark, but what about your everyday seafood choices such as fish? Turns out over half the amount of sharks caught each year are done through by-catch while attempting to catch other fish such as squid, tuna, and other commercial species.
  • This way of farming or fishing doesn’t jeopardize the health of our oceans and is an easy and effective way to make a change each and every time you purchase seafood. To find sustainably caught sea food, follow this link which will give you access to consumer guides, downloadable apps and even lets you compare you favourite sushi! http://www.seafoodwatch.org/

RFOK: We aren’t the only ones who like variety in our seafood! In captivity sharks will refuse to eat if they have eaten the same thing too many times.

3. Hooked on health: Choose shark-healthy health products

  • There are unfortunately a few health care products utilizing components of shark. Some of these include aphrodisiacs, shark liver oil, arthritis and cancer prevention products that use shark cartilage. The effectiveness of these supplements is backed up by very little, if any, scientific facts. Stay away from the use of any of these products, especially with the potential risks of contamination that appears in sharks.

RFOK: Speaking of aphrodisiacs, female sharks have thicker skin, as males have to bite the females while mating. Due to the fact that they heal rapidly, bite marks on a female shark is a telltale sign that you’ve found their mating grounds.

deep blue

4. Give them a High Fin!

  • Flying can impact our deep-sea diving friends! This is one tip I “flew” with after reading it on the Discovery shark week website. Many shark fins are transported via airplane and choosing airlines that refuse these practises is a simple way to hop on board and take a stand as you take your seat.

RFOK;
Sharks move like airplanes by creating forward movements with their tails (like propellers) so that water moves over their fins like wings.

5. Adopt a shark!

  • Now, I am certainly not encouraging you to strap on your scuba gear and dive into a swarm of hungry sharks with your adoption agency papers looking for the right one to bring home to your living room aquarium. On the other hand, or fin, there are many organizations such as WWF, that allow you to “adopt” an animal, thereby donating to the protection of that species. This makes a great gift too! 😀

RFOK:
There’s a species called the cookie-cutter shark (presumably gluten and refined-sugar free!) that takes cookie-cutter shaped bites of its food.

jellyfish

6. Share Socially!

  • Share this and other articles! Tweet it, Facebook it, email it. Social media has become one of the biggest ways to make a splash in our world. It allows us to instantly share information and bring awareness to important issues that we care about. Whether it be this article, a Greenpeace article, the shark week website, or any other modality, create waves by creating awareness.

As we sit down with our lemon waters and humus to take a bite of shark week, consider that with our everyday choices, we have the power to influence these magnificent creatures of the deep! And it is easy, so easy, to make waves in their health, right now! It starts with knowledge and changes with action. And your first line of action? Share this article and get the message out there!

For loads more information check out: http://wildaid.org/sites/default/files/resources/EndOfTheLine2007US.pdf

Wishing you all a Holistic Chomp of Shark Week!

La fin,
Suzanne Eden

Canada Days & Camp Fires // The Holistic Swap In The Roast Of The Marshmallow 

Happy Canada Day friends!

From my birthday and that of nearly every member of my family, June has been a busy month of Gemini’s and tonight’s birthday celebrations kick-start July with fireworks over the beach and bonfires over fire pits.

When you think of campfire food, is a marshmallow one of the first things to make a “pit” stop in your mind?

If so, I have the perfect swap for you!

Pineapple.
Superior to marshmallows in just about every way.

The case? They are naturally tart and sweet (without being a slap to your sweet sensing taste buds),  caramelize in the hot embers of your fire pit (without turning into a dangerous flaming ball of sticky sugar) and retain their juicy interior so as not to leave a chalky taste in your mouth that warrants a gulping jug of water before you can proceed to speak again.

pineapple

We devoured this pineapple Friday night at the first bonfire of the season to commence the time of BBQs, campfires and today’s Canada Day celebration where this is the perfect holistic swap for a sweet and healthy treat.

So why do we have such a strong association with these sweets? Tradition. When it comes to kids and nutrition, I’m a big marshmallow and many of the things we do with food come from habits that we develop as children. In developmental psychology we call this the critical period. This is a time when development is rapid and where what we are taught is critical to forming habits we often carry through our life. This follows closely in the development of our children’s bodies and though we often think kids can get away with eating more junk food during this time (signs of nutritional deficiencies don’t show as prominently until later years) this is a period of rapid growth and development of their bones, organs etc. The early years are when we want to focus on developing healthy bodies and healthy habits alike.

 camping

I, personally, have so many fond memories being gathered around a fire in our campsites and roasting marshmallows to eat off a stick or squash between graham crackers and chocolate for s’mores. But the pineapple we roasted over Friday night was  soft, sticky and sweet but also juicy and I can only imagine that if I was brought up eating this around a campfire, I wouldn’t have wanted anything else. It’s a simple change for a new tradition and with Canadians consuming an estimated 51-53 g of sugar per person per day, according to the 2014 nutrients study, it’s a needed change.

 

 Marshmallow Vs Pineapple

  • Every 100grams of the average marshmallow contains around 58 g’s of sugar!
    • 100 g’s of pineapple contains around 10g
  • The ingredients for marshmallows include: sugar, glucose syrup (more sugar), invert sugar (even MORE sugar), artificial flavourings, colourings, dustings of corn starch (often GMOs and one of the top food allergens)
    • Pineapples are a whole food with no need for an ingredient list.

 

Random FACTS of kindness; does your tongue go numb from eating pineapple?

  • Though it’s important to rule out a food allergy, pineapple contain the natural digestive enzyme bromelain which breaks down proteins and is used in many digestive supplements. This powerful enzyme is what makes pineapple easily digestible but may also be responsible for irritating your tongue and mouth.
  • Cooking and heating deactivates these enzymes to reduce or alleviate this side effect.

 

Whether youre kids are doing the roasting or you are, instead of getting stuck with gooey fingers and crumby graham crackers,  “stick” to this new, sweet tradition for the summer with 100% pure pineapple!

 

Roasting tonight over beaches and bonfires,

Suzanne Eden

 

 

 

Suzanne Eden

7 Breakfasts Of Highly Effective People

Ever wonder what the elite eat?

From Oprah to Bill Clinton, these people are typically driven, motivated, high energy, high impact individuals and generally, they know a little something; diet matters. How could we possibly expect to fuel our days without fueling our diets? If we don’t give our bodies the basic nutrients, the building blocks to thrive, we simply cannot perform at peak performance. With whole food comes energy, creativity, vibrancy, clear mindedness, and motivation. What goes in, must come out and if there’s one thing we can be sure of; food is power.

 

Smoothie on the go

Banana | Coconut water | Chaga (medicinal mushrooms) | Carob | Cinnamon | Spirulina (sea algae superfood) | Acai Berry | Cacao (the raw, unprocessed form of cocoa)

Over the past few days I’ve been listening to podcasts of these effective people while cleaning the house, or doing a morning yoga practise of all things! But breakfast came up quite often and it got me intrigued, how are these people fueling their days with their diets? This is exactly how they do it:

Tony Robbins

  • Who: Motivational speaker, personal finance instructor, life coach and self-help author
  • Breakfast: Salad and fish (“I’m boring as hell”)
  • Breakfast breakdown:
    • Fish is renowned as brain food as it is the best source of animal based omega-3 fatty acids; EPA and DHA. However, as with all animal products, the source matters immensely. In fact, levels of omega 3’s may be reduced by up to 50% in farmed salmon as opposed to wild and have much higher concentration of contaminants. The main point here is that it is all about the source and my favourites include sardines and wild Pacific or Alaskan (NOT Atlantic) caught salmon.
    • Making it work for you: Generally I recommend a plant-based breakfast as it is easily digestible and a rich source of compact, alkalinizing nutrition but with a clean source of fish and lots of greens to balance the meal, this can be a well-balanced lunch or dinner and for the right individual, perhaps even breakfast too!

Rich Roll

  • Who: Plantpowered Wellness Advocate, Author, Ultra-Athlete
  • Breakfast: Carrot, beet, kale (or spinach) and orange juice with flax seed oil
    Gluten free toast with peanut or almond butter
    Gluten free cereal (corn flakes or corn or rice based cereals)
    Almond milk
    Vega meal replacement powder
    Hemp protein powder
  • Breakfast breakdown:
    • When drinking juice in the morning, greens must be the predominant ingredient as fruit juice will spike blood sugar without the stabilizing effect of fibre (the component extracted  in the juicing process). I generally prefer green smoothies that keep the whole food intact for its wide spectrum of benefits and the fibre for blood sugar stabilization, healthy bowels and the ability to keep you full and fueled!
    • Beware that gluten-free does not equate to healthy. Toast and cereals are often heavily processed and devoid of nutrients. We need nutrients in order to metabolize our food and are not replacing these nutrients when we eat food that doesn’t contain them. This creates a nutrient depletion.
    • Hemp can be an excellent protein source. I often use whole hemp seeds with clients over powders as using whole foods will give you the whole benefit of its nutritional spectrum. My favourite protein powders are hemp, brown rice and pea protein but I prefer whole food protein sources when possible.
    • Making it work for you; for the right person and with the right education, a vegan lifestyle can be a healthy life choice. Whether vegan or a meat eater, the big thing to aim for is a plant-based, whole foods diet. One that focusses on nutrient dense, live fruits and veggies and has very little room for anything processed or refined.
 John Mackey
  • Who: Founder of Wholefoods Market
  • Breakfast: According to Business Insider, John makes a protein smoothie every day with almond, oat, rice or soy milk, fresh fruit and kale or spinach leaves.
  • Breakfast Breakdown:
    • Green smoothies are one of my favourite breakfasts as they provide a rich source of nutrients and energizing zap of energy in an easily digestible form. Stay away from the soy milk as the processing of soy negatively alters its chemical composition. I prefer coconut water for hydration and to help balance electrolytes.
    • Making it work for you: I drink one every morning with a variety of greens, cucumbers, a protein source (rice protein or chia seeds), lemon, coconut water etc. If still hungry, wait 20 minutes before eating something like an avocado with satiating fats or add some healthy fats (flax/coconut oil etc.) to your smoothie. You can see my top tips on mastering the green here: https://lifeofeden.com/2013/10/19/master-the-green-smoothie-that-is/

beach scene

Richard Branson

  • Who: Businessman and investor, founder of Virgin Group
  • Breakfast: fruit salad and muesli, a granola-like dish most popular in Germany and Switzerland.
  • Breakfast breakdown:
    • provided you aren’t sensitive to gluten (though there are now gluten-free brands), muesli is a great, granola-like option, usually low in sugar and loaded with fibre. Fruit has a high nutrient density and water content making it very hydrating.
    • Making it work for you: For proper food combining, eat fruit first and wait 20 minutes before consuming the muesli if you feel digestive distress. Here’s why: https://lifeofeden.com/2013/10/06/when-fruit-becomes-toxic-the-one-time-to-never-eat-fruit/

Bill Clinton

  • Who: American politician, previous US president
  • Breakfast: Almond milk smoothie with fresh berries and non dairy protein powder
  • Breakfast breakdown:
    • Throw in some greens, swap at least some of the milk for coconut water and you have a highly effective breakfast in your mug!

Oprah Winfrey

  • Who: you know who!
  • Breakfast: Oprah’s breakfasts always vary but this is from one day of her food diary: 1/4 cup (dry, about a cup cooked) steel-cut oatmeal topped with: 2 tablespoons chopped walnuts, about 1/2 cup fresh blueberries
    1 cup nonfat milk with a splash of hazelnut coffee creamer
  • Breakfast breakdown:
    • Steel cut oats are by far my favourite winter breakfast! She has a good serving, but this meal may be very heavy for some. See the blueberries and remember the food combining rule for fruit? Especially because this breakfast is cooked, I would stay away from adding fast digesting fruit to the mix unless also cooked. Why? Though destroying many of the nutrients, cooking slows the rate at which fruit is digested.
    • Pairing a concentrated protein such as walnuts with starch like oats, may also be very heavy for some. Chopping them finely may help and if you feel light and energized after eating this, you should be just fine. If not, save the protein for your next meal (steel cut oats offer protein on their own)
    • Milk and creamer is highly acidifying and easily swapped out for almond milk or another non-dairy option.
    • Making it work for you; Soak your steel-cut oats overnight for increased digestibility and pair with warming spices such as cinnamon or even curry, and a non-dairy milk such as almond, coconut or rice milk.

 

Brendon Burchard

  • Who: author, public speaker, and online trainer of motivation, high performance, and online marketing
  • Breakfast: This is what Brendon recommends for high performance nutrition: Smoothie with a handful of spinach, handful of blueberries, 1 whole fruit of your choice (pears, peaches, apples, banana), 1/2-3/4 scoop Vega One, ½ -scoop Vega Sport Performance Protein,. 1 scoop if you are working out heavily or need additional protein, 1 tablespoon of Amazing Grass Super Food
  • Breakfast breakdown:
    •  Smoothies are incredible! With the protein powders, it would be easy to add more whole food greens and vegetables such as celery or cucumber into this to amp up the nutrient value.
    • Protein, though blood sugar stabilizing, can be acidifying in high amounts. I would use just one of the protein powders and use a whole food source such as hemp seeds if needing a further boost.
    • Making this work for you: Greens powders are great if you are concerned about getting enough greens into your diet while transitioning to a holistic lifestyle. Whole food sources are best and should comprise at least half of every meal but I currently recommend North Coast Naturals greens powders if you feel you need the added boost.

 

If there’s one thing that I’ve appreciated with these podcasts, it’s the amount of focus that these highly efficient individuals place on their diets and how much they understand the value of their personal health and wellness. Put the right fuel in the tank and you can drive just about anywhere! My favourite fuel: a hearty bowl of warming oatmeal and spices in the winter, and a nutrient packed, light and easily digestible green smoothie in the summer.

 

To our efficiently wholesome mornings,

Suzanne Eden

Mothers Day Gatherings With The Mediterranean Lentil Summer Salad

This was a smashing hit this weekend at our Mother’s Day gathering (as evidenced by the lack of salad that made its way home to me) and it’s about time for another recipe!
  • Have you tried lentils before? They are one of my favourite plant-based ways to pack protein and fibre into my diet. When prepared properly they are easily digested, simple to make and we always have organic bags of them stocked in our cold cellar ready to cook up in a pinch. So whether you are looking for a way to dip a spoon into these legumes or are on the hunt for the ultimate entertaining salad for summer BBQ’s, this dish is your holistic fix!
   But first, a little taste of Mother’s Day…
oh she glows
 
We spent a “heartfelt” Mother’s Day bonding for bunch with these golden chia bagels from the “Oh She Glows” cookbook with dollops of homemade strawberry jam.
  • I made the jam using frozen organic strawberries which are more cost-effective and last longer than the fresh ones. When flash frozen, they maintain the same nutrient value they had fresh, though warming them as you do with this recipe, will unfortunately destroy most of its nutrients anyways.
  • In the bagels, I recommend using maple syrup as opposed to honey as it is more heat-resistant. These bagels are cooked at a very low temperature which is optimal and my mother, and a fellow coworker I shared them with, loved them! It was a good thing for extra ingredients as I maaay have spent Saturday night whipping up another batch after eating the first one straight out of the oven… oops!
 Though I wasn’t able to attend our Mother’s Day gathering this year, we packed up this Mediterranean salad for everyone to enjoy. We are so spoiled as our families get togethers are ripe with fresh veggie platters (much of which is supplied via my grandparent’s garden) with homemade dips & hummus and feature healthy dinners always tailored to our dairy-free, gluten-free needs! But this salad offers the perfect holistic life hack if you find yourself in a situation where it is the only healthy dish on the menu as the high protein content, fibre and healthy fats make this a light but hearty salad so that you can fill up with lentils and take smaller samplings of the rest of the food and/or desserts.
entertaining
The Mediterranean Lentil Summer Salad
Light, effortless and wholesome, this is the perfect entertaining salad for all of your summer gatherings!

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups cooked red or green lentils (soaked overnight)
  • 1-1/2 cups quartered grape tomatoes
  • 1-1/2 cups peeled and quartered cucumber
  • 1 cup diced red bell pepper (organic as it is part of the dirty dozen)
  • 1/2 cup chopped green onion
  • ½ cup pitted olives (black or green. I go based on which organic ones I can find and pit them myself)
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh mint leaves or cilantro
  • Optional but reccommended; 1-2 Avocados!

Ingredients for dressing:

  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 tbsp fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tsp honey (raw, unpasteurized, unprocessed)
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • ½ tsp dried oregano
  • ½ tsp salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste

Directions:

  • Rinse and cook the soaked lentils as instructed on the package and allow to cool (This can be done ahead of time and stored in the fridge).
  • Combine all salad ingredients (except avos) in a large bowl and mix well.
  • Whisk together dressing ingredients in a small bowl and gently mix into the salad. Add the avocado, cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving to allow the flavours to come together. We prepared this dish the night before for an easy morning.
The Switch Ups:
To take you through the remaining few days of our seven days of salads challenge, there are lots of tasty things you can do to revamp this dish!
  • Make wraps with lettuce wraps, raw wraps or rice wraps and include avocado, sprouts, a little mustard or hummus or whatever other wholesome toppings you might enjoy.
  • Use it as a topping for a big, green salad
  • Stuff roasted red peppers, Portobello mushroom caps or squash
  • create a rustic “salsa” type of dip for brown rice or nut and seed crackers
Whether entertaining your family or an entire crowd, this simple, wholesome and yummy salad is your new quick fix go-to and  the perfect way to conclude our final days of the seven days of salads challenge!
To a deliciously plant powered weekend,
Suzanne Eden