Tag Archives: leaky gut

Wild Blueberry Breakfast Muffins

Serves: 6

GF, DF, SF, V

There is just something about walking by a fresh bakery with the smell of sweet and savory options. Muffins, bagels, donuts…Yum, right?

It can be a challenge to cut this delicacy out, especially if the whole coffee and donut thing is a ritual for you or the donut break at the office is a daily thing. 

However, I am confident this Happy Gut grain-free muffin recipe will have you skipping the donut break with no problem. A protein-rich, dairy-free and gut-friendly recipe that you can make a staple!

I’ve left out all processed sugar (to keep the cravings at bay) and incorporated a few superfoods, like blueberries and raw honey. This recipe is also completely grain-free. Instead, it’s packed with fiber and easy-to-digest ingredients to heal your gut and make your mouth happy. 

Enjoy and keep a few in the freezer! Trust me, you’ll want some on hand. 

 

Ingredients

2 cups almond flour 

1 egg

½ tsp baking soda 

⅓ cup unsweetened almond or cashew milk 

¼ cup almond butter 

1 tbs ground flaxseed 

¼ cup raw honey 

1 tbs pure vanilla extract

½ cup frozen wild blueberries (or regular)

1 tsp ground cinnamon

Pinch of sea salt 

2 tsp avocado oil

 

Step 1

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease muffin tins with a bit of avocado oil. 

Step 2

In a large bowl, mix almond flour with flaxseed, salt, baking soda, and cinnamon.

Step 3

In a separate bowl, mix the egg with the milk, almond butter, honey, vanilla extract, blueberries, and avocado oil.

Step 4

Next, combine all ingredients until the batter is smooth and all ingredients are mixed.

Step 5

Pour into muffin tins.

Step 6

Bake for 10-12 minutes. Use a toothpick to check if they are finished. If batter comes off on the toothpick, allow for another 3-4 minutes to cook.

Step 7

Allow to cool, then enjoy or store in an airtight container in the refrigerator or freezer.

Photo by Roberto Martinez on Unsplash

Veggie Bites & Beet Ketchup

V VG GF DF SF

Serves: 4

February is National Heart Health Month. When I think of heart health, my mind immediately goes to foods and spices filled with color and flavor, particularly beets. Their rich color, earthy taste, and vibrant appearance are rather eye-catching. In addition, beets hold some powerful health benefits.

Keep reading because I’ve got the perfect heart-healthy dish for you this month.

More specifically, beets contain inorganic nitrate and nitrite. Simply put, these compounds can turn into the active form of nitric oxide in the body. Nitric oxide supports cardiovascular health by maintaining blood pressure, decreasing your risk of oxidative stress, and regulating the immune system.

Beets can be prepared in so many different ways. Juiced, roasted, steamed, or you could pair it with dark chocolate and add it to a healthy dessert. (Yum, right?)

Personally, my favorite way to incorporate beets is with ketchup. It’s the perfect substitute for condiments high in sugar and food additives (not to mention an easy and tasty way to reap the benefits of beets)!

I pair this with some roasted veggies for an added bonus of fiber to support a healthy gut.

This is the perfect side, snack, or modern spin on a game day dish for your guests!

 

Ketchup Ingredients

1 cup beets, chopped

½ small onion, diced

1 tbs pure maple syrup

1 tsp dijon mustard

1 tbs avocado oil

¼ cup apple cider vinegar

¼ cup filtered water

 

Veggie Bites Ingredients

1 head cauliflower, florets

1 head broccoli, florets

1 jar artichoke hearts

1 medium sweet potato, cut into french fries

2 tbs avocado oil

Sea salt and pepper

Step 1

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. On one sheet pan, place beets with avocado oil.

Step 2

On a separate sheet pan place cauliflower, broccoli, and sweet potato fries. Drizzle with avocado oil, sea salt, and pepper.

Step 3

Roast both vegetable trays for 20-25 minutes.

Step 4

Set the pan with cauliflower, broccoli, and sweet potatoes to the side.

Step 5

On the stove top, place beets in a saucepan with mustard, onions, maple syrup, vinegar, and water. Turn to high heat and boil for 1-2 minutes, then lower to a simmer and cook until onions are soft.

Step 6

Allow ingredients in the saucepan to cool, then add to a blender. Blend until smooth and creamy. Serve on the side of the veggie bites.

Photo by Monika Grabkowska on Unsplash

5 Ways to Reset Your Health in 2019

 

New Year becomes the time when many people set goals and try to break less-than-stellar habits. For most people, this is the time to leave behind unhealthy trends and hit the total-reset button.

Health goals are among those changes. Statistics show that 45 percent of all new year’s resolutions include weight or getting into better shape. (1) In other words, about half of all resolutions include creating a healthier lifestyle!

You probably have your own health-related reset for the new year. While completely overhauling your health can feel overwhelming, I want to provide five strategies that can streamline the process and make optimal health more manageable. No matter where you are with your health goals, you can start these right now.

Strategy #1: Eliminate Inflammatory Foods

Your diet becomes crucial for a health reset. When I say diet, I don’t mean depriving yourself, counting calories, or eating bland foods for the rest of your life.

Instead, you’ll want to minimize foods that cause inflammation in the body, disrupt your microbiome balance, and contribute to weight gain. Inflammatory foods can even impact your mood and sleep.

For the next 30 days, eliminate these foods. (I suggest keeping them out long-term, but life happens, so don’t be hard on yourself if you indulge.)

  • Gluten and all whole grain products
  • Dairy
  • Sugar in its many forms
  • Corn
  • Soy
  • Alcohol
  • Processed and packaged snack items

I talk more about why you want to eliminate these foods in my book Happy Gut. Deprivation isn’t on the menu: There are plenty of gut-supporting foods you can enjoy that help you lose weight on my plan.

Strategy #2: Get Great Sleep

Sleep is by far one of the most important habits when it comes to longevity, weight loss, and good health. Yet, so many of us compromise on it because of our lifelong to-do lists. Or maybe we feel so stressed out, we can’t shut off our brains to sleep.

It’s very challenging to lose weight and sustain healthy habits without optimal sleep. Not sleeping enough raises cortisol levels and can even increase cravings. Lack of sleep and increased cortisol can also promote insulin resistance. In fact, researchers found that lack of sleep decreases insulin regulation by 33 percent. (2)

Aim for a solid 7 – 9 hours each evening. Have the lights out ideally by 10 p.m. to ensure that you have restorative sleep. Try to use the hour before bed to wind down and relax so that you can easily ease into a sound sleep.

Strategy #3: Eat Less Often

While the six-meal-a-day philosophy has been believed to help promote weight loss and health goals, I suggest taking the complete opposite approach. Give your body time to rest between meals. Aim for two or three highly nutritious meals daily and give your body at least 12 hours to rest between dinner and breakfast.

This approach, called intermittent fasting, helps regulate blood sugar and insulin levels. When insulin levels are in check, you lose weight and keep it off more easily. You also dial down hunger and better manage satiety hormones: When your hormones are out of whack, you tend to overeat and have more cravings.

Strategy #4: Reduce Blue Light Exposure

In our society today, we can create a completely artificial atmosphere at 3 a.m. if we want to. (If you’ve been to Vegas, you know what I’m talking about!) The natural light cycle doesn’t affect when we can complete tasks. This can be both a curse and a blessing.

While turning on a light any time can be convenient (like if you need to brush your teeth before bed), access to lighting 24/7 has its downfalls. Being able to create an artificial environment so that you can work deep into the night on your laptop through glowing blue light is not great for your body.

For one, exposure to blue light can increase the likelihood of insulin resistance. Participants in one study were asked to eat their meals in front of bright light in the evening hours. The research confirmed that this exposure to light later on in the day negatively impacted metabolism and increased the risk of insulin resistance. (3)

Try to follow the patterns of natural light the best that you can. Spend time outside in natural light in the morning hours for improved metabolism. Reduce your artificial light environment in the evening the best that you can. Opt for a real book and use a salt lamp or other forms of amber lighting in the evening.

Strategy #5: Love Your Gut

The health of your gut is crucial to your weight. Obesity goes hand-in-hand with microbiome imbalances. Among its havoc, undesirable gut bacteria can create inflammation that directly impacts insulin levels, inevitably creating or exacerbating weight gain.

Give your gut some love! Eat plenty of fiber-rich foods and leafy greens, eliminate the foods that I mentioned above, and be sure you take a high-quality probiotic. I’ve outlined a comprehensive, simple-to-implement plan to heal your gut and lose weight in Happy Gut.

Here’s to making this year your healthiest, highest-frequency life! And don’t let the calendar dictate your health. Remember you can start living a healthier, happier life on any date.

Citations

United States – New Year’s resolution for 2018 | Statistic. Retrieved from https://www.statista.com/statistics/378105/new-years-resolution/

Brazier, Y. (2015, November 04). Sleep well to avoid insulin resistance. Retrieved from https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/301721.php

Urbina, E. (2018). A New Study Delves Into How Blue Light Affects Your Metabolism. [online] Chronobiology.com. Available at: https://www.chronobiology.com/new-study-delves-blue-light-affects-metabolism/ [Accessed 20 Dec. 2018].