So apparently I am a little stuck on lentils lately! Could be worse. Pretty sure it has been. But this post is going to be short and sweet and packed with protein, so hang in there!
We had people over for dinner on Saturday night and yesterday I had an (uncooked) peeled and cubed sweet potato that was waiting to be used up, and this shiny new bag of black lentils just staring at me from the cupboard, so I figured let’s give these babies a chance to have a starring role!
For some reason, I totally overlook black lentils. I use green and brown (both of which hold their shape well after cooking) and red (great for soups and sauces), but somehow have been pretty much neglecting black lentils. They are definitely the most beautiful of the bunch and look like perfectly shaped tiny black stones. And just like their brown, green, and red cousins, they are high in protein (clocking in at 13g per ¼ cup dry), fiber, folate, B vitamins, iron and zinc.
We’ve been moving a little slow getting back from vacation…as in, we got back early Monday and just finally finished unpacking everything this morning. For the most part. It’s a slow process whereby the suitcases sit on the floor in the bedrooms and we gradually extract items of clothing and such as we need them, until we realize that it’s still COLD in Ohio and the bathing suits and shorts and flip flops aren’t going to unpack themselves and also we just can’t stand the sight of the suitcases sitting on the floor anymore! Exhale. Deep breath.
So instead of unpacking, I have been busy cooking! Way more fun. This recipe is one of my faves for our family and I have been meaning to post but wanted to get better pictures. Aaaaaand, that still hasn’t happened so we’re going to make do with what I have. The pic below is just a small sampling of some of the ingredients you can add to this dish, so keep reading for the full scoop.
Ok, so let’s talk about your liver. Wait, don’t go! You’ll be happy you stayed! Or maybe not. Only one way to find out for sure.
During my training at IIN, I heard a presentation from Dr. Libby Weaver, an Australian author, speaker and nutritional biochemist. I have heard her speak twice now and I just feel like I need to have lunch with her and geek out on all her scientific knowledge. She’s super smart but breaks things down into language that everyone can understand, and it’s clear how passionate she is for what she studies and teaches.
So anyway, in this lecture, she got real about the liver, and why it’s not okay to ignore that hardworking, underpaid little organ tucked away under the ribcage with the stomach and gallbladder. This beautiful little baby has an important job, but like anything working hard, it can become overloaded – in this case, by our lifestyles and choices - and it may require some extra love and detoxification.
Matcha!! Although I have definitely heard of it for years, and have had the green powder in smoothies and lattes, I’ve never been a regular user. I’ve just always been a coffee kind of girl - something about that smell and the warmth and the strong jolt in the morning. Sigh. But lately, a good friend recommended a matcha brand she uses, so I decided to give it a solid try. I knew that the caffeine boost it gives is supposed to be smoother and longer lasting than that from coffee, that it helps to relax the mind and reduce stress, and that it is high in antioxidants, so….what’s not to love about all that?! I needed it, and I needed it right away. Unfortunately patience is not my strong suit, and the brand I chose, Organic Burst, took about a week to arrive from the UK. In the meantime, I got busy collecting some info to share for other interested newbies!
Matcha is huge in Japan, and has been gaining popularity in the US for years. So why all the fu...
My daughter, who claims not to like pancakes or bananas, helped me come up with these the other day, and what do you know, she loves them...although she still doesn't like pancakes or bananas, of course :) If you have a high speed blender, just throw all the ingredients (except chocolate chips) in there and blend until smooth. A food processer or regular blender would get the job done too, maybe with just a little more milk added to keep things moving.
You can easily make these gluten free or vegan, depending on which oats, milk, and chocolate chips you choose. If you don't like chocolate chips, blueberries are great in these too!
Banana oat chocolate chip pancakes, makes 6:
1 cup rolled oats (use certified gluten free if preferred)
1/2 ripe banana
1/3 cup applesauce (or use the rest of the banana)
1/4 cup milk of choice (I use whole milk, but you can sub dairy free)
I come from a scientific background, as you may have seen on my About Me page - from getting a science degree from Miami University to working many years in research based positions between then and now. So for me, the term "health coach" sounded vague and informal, confusing and a little bit alternative. Unfortunately, these fears and preconceptions kept me from enrolling at the Institute of Integrative Nutrition for far too long, but I am so glad I finally made the leap in late 2015. As I have learned more about what a health coach is and what we do, I have realized how much health coaches and similar professionals can help to make an impact on the overall health of society.
In the typical healthcare system, we see a physician for an annual well-check (or far less frequently if you are like many Americans), or when we are sick. But who is there in between, helping to keep you on track, make the right choices, wade through all the studies, resea...
I have much to say about how amazing this recipe is, but going to keep it short and sweet because....three littles who still haven't started back to school! And one of whom is crying on my leg after throwing a can of play-doh at her sister's pinky finger. So the theme of the moment is posting efficiently.
I am all about bowls of all kinds lately because it's easy to include lots of healthy deliciousness and the ingredients can be customized based on different tastes. For instance, in our family we have two vegetarian eaters, 3 that don't like tomatoes, 1 that won't eat chickpeas, and the smallest who still picks the kale out every time I try to sneak it in :)
I made this meal two nights in a row, not leftovers, but completely from scratch again because I couldn't stop thinking about it. It may not look that exciting, but there is SO MUCH FLAVOR, from the roasted tomatoes to the tangy feta and the bit of salty sunflower seeds. Please make this ASAP. It doesn't need an...