*MASTER TONIC* what it is and why it's so good for you {Nature's

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*MASTER TONIC* what it is and why it’s so good for you {Nature’s “flu shot”}

Flu Season is upon us and so it is time…14492609_1126158860800502_749872313009883470_n

I talk about “Master Tonic” every season.  And inevitably, every season, there are several friends, followers, or patients that ask me, “what is it that again?” and “wait, what exactly is in it?”

Basically, it is “nature’s flu shot” (although I hate saying that).  In my family, we try to avoid anything that will compromise our immune system; We skip out on copious antibiotics, prescription drugs, over the counter medicines, vaccinations, unhealthy food choices, etc as much as we can.  Rather we prefer to strengthen our immunity naturally.  And, we believe in “food as medicine.”  Whole food supplements, homeopathic remedies, herbs too, and tonics.  So, this tonic is a really great start to boost your seasonal immunity.  We always have it on hand in the fridge so at the first sign of a sniffle or sore throat?  Yep…a shot of the tonic. One or two of these a day and you’ll be good as new in a few. img_1942

Believe it or not, nature gives us exactly what we need, when we need it.  Local, seasonal food actually does more to prevent dis-ease than most of us know – these days anyway.  Our ancestors knew it.  Ancient traditional healers knew it.  And the extensive research of Dr. Weston Price* shows us it is so.  “Master Tonic” really is the best of the best as far as immune-boosting natural medicine is concerned.

So, this is MY version.  There are many, but this one suits me best. Here ya go:

MASTER TONIC:img_3323

  1. garlic
  2. ginger
  3. cayenne
  4. turmeric
  5. black pepper
  6. lemon juice
  7. apple cider vinegar (preferably Bragg’s but definitely a brand that is organic & contains “the mother”)
  8. maple syrup (preferably grade-B)
  9. honey (raw & local)
  10. cinnamon
  11. onion

Preferably all organic, all raw, and all fresh.  Grated and then blended with all the pulp remaining.  If you only have powder or flakes or whatever that’s ok too, but raw organic is the BEST.

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Coconut Curry Butternut Squash Soup from the other night. Not ALL of the Master Tonic ingredients, but many!

Folks ask “how much of each?”  I always respond with “as much as you can tolerate.”  It should be as spicy as you can possibly make it without blowing your head off.  It will kinda taste like a sweet-and-spicy Thai chili sauce.  In fact, it is so easy to use this in soup or sauce recipes to make delicious seasonal family dinners while keeping everyone healthy!  Add even SOME of these ingredients to your regular diet and meals to boost your wellness.  If you are extremely sensitive to spicy, follow the “shot” with a “chaser” of rice, almond, or coconut milk (must be non dairy to prevent excess phlegm and inflammation).  It is much the same as how you would cool your palate with Thai tea or coconut in your curry at your fave Thai or Indian restaurant, or Horchata after spicy Mexican food.

OK, so I’m sure you are wondering how these various food items can be so miraculous.  Delicious, sure, but curative?  What exactly makes this food into medicine?  For that, follow along – here’s a little light reading…

Garlic:unknown

Historically, garlic has been known to combat sickness (and not just ward off Vampires! although you can see how that myth is seasonally appropriate as, inexplicably, illness does rise in October).  Garlic contains a compound called Allicin that has many medicinal properties.  It also contains significant amounts of  Vitamin C, Vitamin B6, & Manganese. It is good for combating high blood pressure/hypertension, and likewise improves cholesterol thus lowering one’s likelihood of heart disease.  It’s strong concentration of antioxidants prevents sickness as well as preventing Alzheimer’s and dementia. Garlic is anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and anti-viral.  Finally, it’s allyl sulfides hep prevent cancer.

for more info, go here: https://authoritynutrition.com/11-proven-health-benefits-of-garlic

or here: http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=60

Ginger:unknown-1

Not just for nausea (although it does do wonders for nausea when you’re preggers!- fresh only though – no supplements!). Ginger is shocked full of nutrients and bio active compounds that are super healthy for your body and brain.  Ginger helps with digestion, reduces nausea, and most importantly, fights the flu.  It’s natural oil, gingerol, is a bioactive compound responsible for anti inflammatory and antioxidant effects.  Because it is anti-inflammatory, ginger reduces muscle pain and soreness.  The root also boasts anti-diabetic properties by lowering sugar, helps to prevent heart disease, and reduces menstrual pain, as well as lowers cholesterol.  Studies show that gingerol has even been found to help prevent cancer.

for more info, go here: https://authoritynutrition.com/11-proven-benefits-of-ginger/

Cayenne:unknown-3

Too hot! Hot Damn! Call the Police & the Fireman!  But really, Cayenne is a powerhouse of health.  Full of Capsaicin, the question really is, what CAN’T it fix?

Firstly we’ll start with our gut.  Capsaicin increases the digestive fluids, starting with saliva, and down on into the stomach.  By doing so, it fights bacteria that could cause an intestinal infection.  It also helps with digestions and aids in fighting diarrhea that is caused by a bacterial infection (and God knows flu diarrhea can be nasty). Capsaicin acts as an antioxidant, protecting the cells from free radicals.  Plus, Cayenne is highly effective in cancer prevention. Capsaicin is a mucus thinner, and can help get mucus out of the lungs (very good when you have the flu!). It is thought to strengthen lung tissues and help to prevent emphysema.

Cayenne is full of beta carotene and antioxidants that support your immune system.  It raises your body temperature and thus increases the activity 0f the immune system. And, it is full of Vitamin C to further prevent infection.
Cayenne also contains Vitamin A and Vitamin E, both antioxidants that reduce inflammation. Because of its anti-inflammatory qualities, the spice prevents allergies and their associated symptoms (which are similar to flu symptoms right?). It has anti-fungal properties that can prevent systemic Candida and thusly prevent joint pain, further digestive disorders, and a weakened immune system.
Lastly, Cayenne boosts metabolism, improves energy levels, aids in weight loss, can help with eczema, repairs damaged skin, and reduces migraine pain (flu headaches are the worst!).
for more info, go here: https://draxe.com/cayenne-pepper-benefits/

or here: http://www.webmd.com/pain-management/tc/capsaicin-topic-overview

Turmeric:unknown-2

I know!  All the rage now!  Everyone is talking and tweeting about the anti-inflammatory benefits of turmeric. The “Golden Latte” is on the tip of many westside hipster tongues. Well, it is true. This spice has amazing anti-inflammatory qualities! Here’s the scoop:

Turmeric is what turns curry yellow and has been used in India for thousands of years. The thing that makes it medicinal is it’s compounds called curcuminoids, most notably, curcumin; The famed antioxidant with anti-inflammatory effects.  But what is MOST important and many folks don’t know, is that you MUST consume turmeric in conjunction with black pepper.  The black pepper contains piperine, which increases your blood’s ability to absorb the curcumin by as much as 2000%!  Also important, and why the ‘golden milk’ works well as a delivery system, is that turmeric is fat soluble, so it should be consumed with a fatty meal.

160608coachturmeric2What else is cool about this hip spice? It helps to improve brain function and lowers the risk of brain dis-eases such as depression and Alzheimer’s.  How? not to get too sciency, but many brain disorders are linked to decreased levels of Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF).  Curcumin can increase levels of BDNF, therefore delaying and/or even reversing age related decrease in brain function as well as common brain diseases.  Curcumin can cross the blood-brain barrier, which is the reason that it is believed to aid dramatically in the prevention and reverse of Alzheimer’s disease. One of the characteristics of this vastly unstudied disease, is a buildup of proteins called Amyloid plaques.  Studies show that curcumin is helpful in the removal of these plaques. Oxidative damage and inflammation play a major role as well, both of which are beneficially affected by the curcumin in Turmeric. As it aids in the brain, curcumin is also thought to just plain make you smarter.

Oh and btw, as it is anti-inflammatory, curcumin helps with arthritis, even rheumatoid arthritis.

As you may or may not realize, inflammation is your body’s way of insulating itself when it is damaged, but it also causes pain. So why is turmeric good for preventing/recovering from the flu? um, decreases your inflammation, duh.

*Oh and on a healthy side note*…You may have heard about the recent recall.  If not, now you do. Elevated levels of lead have been found in six brands of powdered turmeric, all from the parent company Gel Spice: Spice Select, Market Pantry, Gel (2 lots), Clear Value, Lieber’s, and Spice Supreme (For more on that go here: http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2016/08/six-brands-of-turmeric-added-to-recall-for-excessive-lead/#.WA7e-qOZPR1). Suffice to say be aware of your product and from whom you are purchasing.

For more info re the benefits of turmeric, you can go here: https://authoritynutrition.com/top-10-evidence-based-health-benefits-of-turmeric/

Black Pepper:images

So, above we mentioned how this spice works in conjunction with turmeric, but it also has many medicinal qualities of it’s very own and is used frequently in Ayurvedic medicine. In addition to the afore mentioned piperine, black pepper also contains iron, potassium, calcium, magnesium, manganese, zinc, chromium, Vitamin A, and Vitamin C.

As with it’s bestie curcumin, piperine increases the bioavailability of many other nutrients namely Vitamin A, C, selenium, and beta carotene. It also helps to stimulate digestion and as a result can help prevent or colic, bloating, indigestion, flatulence, and constipation (all horrid flu symptoms). It’s antibacterial qualities prevent intestinal bacteria and aid in a healthy gut biome. Studies show that piperine speeds up your metabolism, suppresses fat accumulation in the body, promotes urination, and perspiration, and as a result aids in detox as it helps to remove toxins from the body (just sweat it out).

for more info, go here: http://www.top10homeremedies.com/kitchen-ingredients/top-10-health-benefits-black-pepper.html

Lemon Juice:

No…not lemonade, not “from concentrate,” not reconstituted, and most certainly not from a plastic lemon-shaped bottle! Raw, fresh-squeezed and organic if you please.

First off, Lemons are packed with vitamin C, and not just a little, they have 187% of the daily value, so super-duper for your immune system! Together with the flavonoid glycosides esperetin and naringenin, free radicals haven’t much of a fighting chance.

Additionally, lemons contain thiamin, riboflavin, pantothenic acid, iron, magnesium, vitamin B6, calcium, and copper, folate, and potassium. The more healthy minerals in you, the healthier you are. Lemons contain Vitamin A, and flavonoid anti-oxidants like alpha, and B-carotenes, B-cryptoxanthin, zea-xanthin and lutein all of which are antioxidants.

lemon2-min

Surprisingly, lemons are NOT acidic (weird I know!) they are actually alkaline and work to balance your body’s pH. Most sickness cannot exist in an alkaline environment, notably cancer. Their alkaline nature relieves the body of excess acid, reducing pain in the joints, muscles, and fibrous tissue.

“There is often misunderstanding of lemon’s pH outside the body versus inside the body.  Let’s get this straight and expound on 10 benefits of regularly taking lemon juice with warm water (note: NOT equal to lemonade!)

Outside the body, lemon juice is acidic (pH is below 7).  This is a non-issue. Everyone knows this.  It’s a citrus fruit.

Inside the body however, when lemon juice has been fully metabolized and its minerals are dissociated in the bloodstream, its effect is alkalizing and therefore raises the pH of body tissue (pH above 7 is alkaline).  Please notice the difference.” (http://www.vitalitylink.com/article-holistic-health-2055-lemon-juice-acidic-alkaline-body-water)

And one last interesting fact.  We all know that staying hydrated when you’re sick is essential (especially when you’re loosing bodily fluids literally in all directions!).  Interestingly enough, “a small amount of lemon juice will quench thirst more effectively than many times the amount of water. Experienced travelers declare that when they add lemon juice to ordinary drinking water, in various localities, it acts as an antiseptic and prevents illness due to allergy to different water supplies.” (http://www.beliefnet.com/wellness/health/physical-health/hidden-health-secrets-of-lemons.aspx?p=9)

for more info, go here:

http://www.popsugar.com/fitness/10-Reasons-Lemon-Juice-Good-You-14860617

or here: http://www.beliefnet.com/wellness/health/physical-health/hidden-health-secrets-of-lemons.aspx

or here: http://www.nutrition-and-you.com/lemon.html

or here: http://www.vitalitylink.com/article-holistic-health-2055-lemon-juice-acidic-alkaline-body-water

Apple Cider Vinegar:

To start, let’s quote Patricia and Paul Bragg from their book “Apple Cider Vinegar Miracle Health System:”unknown-4

“Research worldwide supports and commends what Hippocrates (the father of medicine) found and treated his patients with in 400 B.C. He discovered that natural, undistilled Apple Cider Vinegar (or ACV)* is a powerful cleansing and healing elixir, “a naturally occurring antibiotic and antiseptic that fights germs and bacteria” for a healthier, stronger, longer life!

The versatility of ACV as a powerful body cleansing agent is legendary. It’s been traced to Egyptian urns as far back as 3000 B.C. The Babylonians used it as a condiment and preservative, while Julius Caesar’s army used ACV tonic to stay healthy and fight off disease. The Greeks and Romans kept vinegar vessels for healing and flavoring. It was used in Biblical times as an antiseptic and a healing agent and is mentioned in the Bible. In Paris during the Middle Ages, it was sold from barrels by street vendors as a body deodorant, healing tonic and a health vinegar drink.

Even Christopher Columbus and his crew on his voyage to discover America in 1492 had their vinegar barrels for prevention of scurvy as did the soldiers in the American Civil War. For centuries in Japan, the feared Samurai warriors drank it for strength and power. ACV has been used for thousands of years not only for health reasons, but also as a cleansing agent to remove bacteria, germs, odors, and even stains and spots.”

purchase the book here: http://bragg.com/zencart/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=8&products_id=22

But really, ACV is redonk good for you.

Starting with its Antimicrobial properties…yes! it is good for CLEANING. Your house, your hair, your face, but more importantly, your CELLS. The organic acid (primarily acetic acid, passes into your cell membranes to kill bacteria lurking there. And um…Buh Bye bacterial infection! Naturally, foods that have been fermented with ACV have a powerhouse of antimicrobial organic acids (amino acids) including not only acetic but also lactic, ascorbic, citric (no not from citrus), malic, propionic, succinct, and tartaric (not found in steak tartar, snigger).  “One study found acetic acid to be lethal to even E. coli O157:H7, while other research has shown substances such as acetic acid, lemon juice, or a combination of lemon juice and vinegar to be effective against salmonella.”

You might have guessed that like many of the “Master Tonic” ingredients, ACV has its own load of antioxidants, some of which include catechin, epicatechin, and gallic, caffein, and chlorogenic acids.

And it helps with heartburn and acid reflux (both common with the flu right?) Did you know that acid reflux ironically is a result of TOO LITTLE acid in your stomach? Adding all the above to your belly will relieve all that.

Be sure to get an ACV that is organic and be CERTAIN that is has the “Mother” in it. yes. that gooey globular slimy thingy in the bottom. That is SOOOPER good for you. it is an amino-acid based substance made from acetic acid bacteria.  That stuff helps reduce muscle damage caused by inflammation. Weird huh?

for more information go here: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2014/06/14/vinegar-health-properties.aspx

Maple Syrup:unknown

Maple syrup is DELICIOUS! But, believe it or not, is also incredibly nutritious! Of course, we are not talking about Mrs. Butterworths, okay? I mean 100% pure maple syrup…you know, like from a Maple tree? (Didn’t ya’ll read the “Little House on the Prairie” books? remember Pa gets it from the ACTUAL trees in the forest in Vermont?) As for nutrients, it contains water, protein, fat, carbohydrates, and sugars. Wait, protein? yes, protein.  And the minerals, tho! Full of calciumironmagnesiumphosphorus sodiumpotassium, and zinc. As well as vitamins! thiamin, riboflavinniacin, and B6.

You guys know about antioxidants obvs, so I won’t get into it AGAIN, but suffice to say that maple syrup, surprisingly, has antioxidant properties that are highly important for the body. Primarily it is the Manganese present in the maple syrup that supplies superoxide dismutase (an oxidative enzyme) to help rid the mitochondria of free radicals that occur during normal metabolic function.

Maple syrup contains not only Manganese but Zinc as well, both of which help boost the number of white blood cells in to support the Immune System and help fight infection.images-1

Again I must insist on 100% pure organic. And preferably Grade B if possible, as it is less filtered/refined and will contain many more of its natural goodness (As a rule, it is always best to go for the less processed of anything really).  A couple of easy to find brands that I trust are Spring Tree (which can be found at most organic grocers or coops), Simple truth (if you shop at Ralph’s – although your money does go the Koch Bros when you shop there so there’s that), or Trader Joe’s has a great one or two and maybe sometimes even the Grade B!

for more info, go here:

https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/maple-syrup.html https://draxe.com/maple-syrup-nutrition/

Raw (local) Honey:raw-local-honey-is-the-cure-for-seasonal-allergies

The ancient liquid gold! No, really!

“Health benefits of consuming honey have been documented in early Greek, Roman, Vedic, and Islamic texts and the healing qualities of honey were referred to by philosophers and scientists all the way back to ancient times, such as Aristotle (384 – 322 BC) and Aristoxenus (320 BC).”(http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/264667.php)

In fact, bee barf packs an arsenal of antioxidants including disease-fighting antioxidant flavonoids pinocembrin, pinostrobin and chrysin, all polyphenols that significantly boost one’s immune system. “Raw honey contains 22 amino acids, 27 minerals and 5,000 enzymes. Minerals include ironzincpotassiumcalciumphosphorousmagnesium and selenium. Vitamins found in honey include vitamin B6, thiamin, riboflavin, pantothenic acid and niacin. In addition, the nutraceuticals contained in honey help neutralize damaging free radical activity.” (https://draxe.com/the-many-health-benefits-of-raw-honey/)

It is exceptionally good for sleep (god knows we all need SLEEP when we have the horrid flu!) and if you don’t get worn down in the first place, then you won’t get sick. To quote Dr. Axe…

“Raw honey promotes restorative sleep in two ways. By consuming honey before bedtime, it restocks the liver’s glycogen supply and prevents the brain from triggering a crisis search for fuel, which can wake you up. Secondly, eating raw honey fosters the release of melatonin in the brain by creating a small spike in insulin levels, which stimulates the release of tryptophan in the brain. Tryptophan converts to serotonin, which is then converted to melatonin.

Melatonin also boosts immunity and helps rebuild tissue during periods of rest.”

Did you know that honey actually helps with seasonal allergies? Yes! Because the raw honey is made from the very blossoms that cause you to sneeze and have itchy watery eyes. The delicious delivery system provides your body with a sort of inoculation against your local seasonal pollen. Of course, it’s gotta be from a local hive or the pollen won’t have it’s effect, and also of course, the honey must be raw in order to retain traces of the offending flora and fauna.

And finally, honey is a miraculous cough suppressant. “Raw honey has been shown to be as effective in treating coughs as over-the-counter commercial cough syrups. Increasing scientific evidence shows that a single dose of honey can reduce mucus secretion and coughs. In one study, honey was just as effective as diphenhydramine and dextromethorphan, common ingredients found in over-the counter cough medicines.”images

In fact, “The World Health Organization (WHO) and American Academy of Pediatrics recommend honey as a natural cough remedy.

A 2007 study by Penn State College of Medicine suggested that honey reduced nighttime coughing and improved sleep quality in children with upper respiratory infection better than the cough medicine dextromethorphan or no treatment

(http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/264667.php)

for more info, go here: https://draxe.com/the-many-health-benefits-of-raw-honey/

or here: http://therawnakedtruth.me/raw-local-honey-natures-cure-for-seasonal-allergies/

or here: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/264667.php

Cinnamon:unknown-5

OK, so cinnamon is another one that is super good for you in so many ways! To start, it can lower bad cholesterol, help treat type 2 diabetes, is used to treat the symptoms of Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s, can help manage Polycystic ovarian syndrome, and has anti-carcinogenic properties (prevents cancer). Traditional  Chinese medicine and Ayurveda have depended on cinnamon for thousands of years to treat colds, indigestion, and to promote higher brain function, lessen cramps, and for it’s anti-clotting properties. Cinnamon is believed to improve energy, vitality and circulation.

You see cinnamon is made of what is called cinnamaldehyde, which is why it has antifungal and antibacterial properties.  As well, it has a very high concentration of antioxidants (there’s that word again!), which reduct inflammation and protect the body from free radical damage.

It is important to note that there are several kinds of cinnamon; Know that *Ceylon cinnamon* is the one to look for. Don’t fall for Cassia or Chinese cinnamon (ironic, I know, considering the recommendation from Chinese Medicine right? be wary…). Also, know that too much cinnamon may cause digestive issues as the spice apparently cannot tell the difference, once in your gut, between good and bad bacteria. It is advised that if you are using copious amounts of cinnamon (please no more than 6 grams daily!), you should add probiotics to your diet to encourage the good gut flora (but you know you should be doing this anyway, right?).

summarized from the following: http://www.organicauthority.com/health/11-health-benefits-of-cinnamon.html#

for more info, go here: https://authoritynutrition.com/10-proven-benefits-of-cinnamon/

Onion:images-3

Where to start? These epic orbs are like little bombs of health! Along with all of the items on this Master Tonic list, onions have been used for thousands of years by almost all cultures and societies. They are indomitable!

Ok, why? well, onions have significant amounts of Vitamin C and B6, iron, folate, potassium, and Manganese, as well as the phytochemicals known as allium and allyl disulphide (which become allicin) that are the powerhouse of the bulb. Onions are anti-inflammatory, cancer-fighting, diabetes-preventing, blood pressure lowering, and coronary artery disease preventing.

Significant amounts of polyphenols (another phytochemical in onions) and an antioxidant flavonoid called quercetin account for the reputation onions have for disease prevention. Quercitin has proven anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory, and anti-diabetic functions, helps prevent histamine release, and prevents the inflammatory processes associated with asthma. Polyphenols also play an important role as a prebiotic, increasing the ratio of beneficial bacteria in your gut, which is important for health, weight management, and disease prevention. Prebiotics are indigestible to you, but they help nourish beneficial bacteria in your body. These beneficial bacteria in turn assist with digestion and absorption of your food, and play a significant role in your immune function.

Luckily, cooking onions in soup doesn’t diminish their quercetin value – it simply transfers to the broth. The flavonoids in onions are more concentrated in the outer layers, so discard as little as possible. (As you can imagine, French onion soup is shock full of the good stuff!)

the above is summarized from: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2016/01/04/health-benefits-onions.aspx

http://foodfacts.mercola.com/onion.html

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Pumpkin soup by Dr. Eric the other night. You’d be surprised how many of the tonic ingredients are in here. we LOVE seasonal remedies!

Blah Blah Blah Blah….Wait, did you finish? You read it all? Really? No skimming? Golly, that was quick. I mean, it took me, like, two months to write it! All those summaries of each ingredient, jeez! tedious! But super important. for reals.

So now do you see why Master Tonic is the real deal? Why it is so EPIC for you? Did you notice a recurring theme? (*hint: antioxidants! anti-inflammatory! immune-support!*) I sure hope I have been convincing. Because we’ve got to give our immune system a good, running start! We are now in the thick of flu season and no one wants to be under the weather for the holidays. At the very least, I know my rantings have influenced the habits of a few of my neighbors, lol. In fact, Dr. Eric was home with the flu just this weekend (you bet I was feeding him shots of this stuff)! And right on cue, our neighbors Tim & Vicki say, “Master Tonic!” I LOVE that. It makes me so happy. Because really, food IS MEDICINE. And sickness can be prevented if we are knowledgable and careful in our food choices.  As you can see from some of the photos here, use it in your cooking too! An easy way to make your food deliciously seasoned, AND super healthy. Combined with your homemade bone broth/chicken stock, you are good to go!

15056497_10157722484055322_5232368962592727938_n

“Faux-Pho” from last month – full of many of the master tonic ingredients! and made with homemade bone broth too. an immune support powerhouse!

Hey, I sure hope you guys don’t get sick. And if you do, hope this helps!

Big hugs,

Coby Dahlstrom (aka #mrsdrdahl)

for

Dr. Eric P. Dahlstrom, D.C., L.Ac.
Santa Monica Healing Arts

Providing Chiropractic Care and Acupuncture in Santa Monica since 1999 (http://santamonicahealingarts.com). Check out our 5-star Review on Yelp (http://www.yelp.com/biz/santa-monica-healing-arts-santa-monica) or find us on facebook (https://www.facebook.com/pages/Santa-Monica-Healing-Arts)

~ follow us on
twitter: @SMHealingArts
facebook: “Santa Monica Healing Arts”
instagram: @mrsdrdahl
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*for more info re Dr. Price go here: (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Weston_Price)

Ready for Fall? THIS!: seasonal butternut squash soup

#mrsdrdahl’s first sight of fall soup

Anyone else noticing that the air smells a little different? There is misty fog in the morning before work or school drop off. And at the end of the day, it’s a bit chilly? Yay FALL! (or what we know of it in LA anyway).

In Dr. Eric’s garden its fall too; the summer squash is ripening. In the last few weeks, he’s brought home several different varieties (pumpkins, patty pans, Lebanese zucchini, yellow summer squash, and butternut (my fave).

When the squash comes home, and you need a sweater in the evenings, it’s SOUP SEASON!

Oh, I made a yummy one the other night for our first dive in.  So yummy, in fact, that I got 40+ likes on instagram (@mrsdrdahl).  So I’m thinking that it might be worthy of a blog here on Dr. D’s website.  This soup is not only delicious, and nutritious, but easy!  Here it is:

mrsdrdahl’s First Sight of Fall Soup (Roasted Butternut Squash)

img_6231

A recent Sunday’s harvest from Dr. Eric’s garden

1 large whole organic butternut squash

2 Tbs organic butter (preferably Kerrygold Irish butter)

1 organic apple (preferably fuji or gala)

1 organic yellow onion (or maui)

2 bay leaves

1/4 tsp fresh thyme

1/4 tsp fresh terragon

1/4 tsp turmeric

1/4 tsp cinnamon

dash cayenne (or two or three)

2 C bone broth (preferably homemade) chicken (or veggie)

1 C filtered water

img_6501

Dr. Eric in his happy place

1 tsp sea salt

2 dashes white pepper (or three)

fresh ground black pepper to taste

squeeze of lemon

1/2 C organic milk (or almond, hemp, rice, goat, cream, etc)

seeds of the butternut squash

whole plain organic yogurt (goat or greek ok, or sour cream)

dash of paprika

Lucero Olive Oil’s Evoo Favolosa Extra Virgin Olive Oil (preferably)

Directions:

  1. Heat oven to 375.
  2. Cut the squash in half lengthwise and hollow out the middle separating the seeds and setting them aside (do not throw out). Cover the inside surface of the exposed squash meat with olive oil then place insides up on a baking sheet covered in parchment. Add the cleaned squash seeds to the lined baking pan, and place all in the oven to roast.
  3. Be sure to check on the seeds after about 15-20 minutes and take them out or they will burn! When cooler, toss seeds in Lucero’s Favolosa Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO) & sea salt. Set aside.
  4. Meanwhile, return the squash to the oven. Roast for approx 1 hour (total) until your house smells amazing, it is slightly browned on top, & it is soft all the way through when tested with a fork. Remove from oven and let cool.
  5. While the squash is cooking, dice both your onion (skinned) and apple (skin on) and sautee them in a saucepan with 2 Tbs butter (preferably Kerrygold Irish butter) and the bay leaves until apple and onions are clear and soft. Then add spices.
  6. When the squash has cooled considerably, using a spoon, scrape the meat from the skin, discard skin.
  7. Back in the pan, add the broth, water, roasted squash meat, salt & both peppers. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer, stirring occassionally for approximately 15 minutes to blend the flavors. Remove from heat and stir in your “milk” of choice. Squeeze in the fresh lemon.

    31mdjzqp5xl

    immersion blender – the best!

  8. Using a blender (I prefer an immersion blender as it doesn’t require moving the soup from the sauce pan), puree the soup until it is the desired consistency (I prefer it rather lumpy).
  9. Serve garnished with a dollop of yogurt & the reserved roasted butternut squash seeds.  If you want it extra pretty, I’d also add a dash of paprika, and drizzle of the delicious Lucero Favolosa EVOO (not pictured above).
  10. Enjoy!

So, it takes a while, but still it’s easy work. And totally worth it! My kids and hubs both scarfed it down! The soup, and the side -salad of organic kale tossed in another couple of my faves Lucero’s Persian Lime EVOO, and their Mission Fig Balsamic Vinegar, & topped with dried cranberries (as pictured above).

PLUS, as I’ve mentioned before and as you surely know from Dr. Eric, seasonal, local food is ridiculously good for you.  Nature knows best of course, and she provides exactly the things you need when you need them. Wondering what on God’s Green Earth could be so great about butternut squash? well here’s a few things*:

  1. Heart Health. Full of potassium, it helps counteract the effects of sodium and decreases your blood pressure to prevent things like heart attack and stroke.
  2. Helps keep you regular. Full of fiber, it helps with digestion and helps maintain a healthy digestive track with good gut bacteria (and we know how much we are learning lately about THAT!).
  3. Healthy Eyesight. Full of Vitamin A, as well as lutein & zeaxanthin both antioxidants, the squash is great for your eyes.
  4. Healthy Bones. Full of manganese, Vitamin C, Iron folate, & Zinc, it helps maintain calcium absorption, mineral density, & production of collagen, all for healthy bone structure and protection against osteoperosis.
  5. Healty Skin. Full of Vitamin C, it helps prevent dryness and wrinkles and thus keeps you looking youthful! um, yay?!
  6. Healthy Immune Function. Again, with the Vitamin C – we all know that it is like, the best to help you fight infection.
  7. Reduces Inlammation. Yessir! the winner. Inflammation is the cause of most of our pain and disease. B-squash has the antioxidant beta-cryptoxanthin which reduces that shite. Need I list how studies show…reduces inflammation-related disorders like rheumatoid arthritis, regular arthritis, cancer…& all those yuckies?
  8. Aids in weight loss – what?! less than 100 calories, 26 carbs, and almost no fat. Great for filling you up without weighing you down.

*The above list of benefits is summarized from the following: http://www.organicauthority.com/8-incredible-nutrition-and-health-benefits-of-butternut-squash/

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homemade bone broth

So, those are some freakin’ great reasons to eat it.  That, and that it is delicious!  And, we haven’t even looked at the health benefits of all the other awesome ingredients like …. say…

bone broth (see a previous SMHA blog here: http://santamonicahealingarts.com/?p=800), or onions, cayenne, or turmeric (all the rage now re anti-inflammation!)… or how the black pepper helps your body absorb the amaze turmeric…or how lemon juice is alkaline which helps starve and prevent cancer…or paprika, or sea salt, oh and helloooooo OLIVE OIL? the list goes on.

What your body needs, nature provides.  And, right WHEN you need it.  To prevent FLU season (no FLU shots needed thank you very much).  The best bet is #foodasmedicine.  Ask Dr. Eric.  There’s a reason why you crave what you do, when you do. Trust your insticts.  And stay well.

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me in my favorite fall sweater on soup day! The Darcy Grandpa Cardigan in Latte from www.amateursstudio.com

Enjoy!

Coby Dahlstrom (aka #mrsdrdahl)

for

Dr. Eric P. Dahlstrom, D.C., L.Ac.
Santa Monica Healing Arts

Providing Chiropractic Care and Acupuncture in Santa Monica since 1999 (http://santamonicahealingarts.com). Check out our 5-star Review on Yelp (http://www.yelp.com/biz/santa-monica-healing-arts-santa-monica) or find us on facebook (https://www.facebook.com/pages/Santa-Monica-Healing-Arts)

~ follow us on
twitter: @SMHealingArts
facebook: “Santa Monica Healing Arts”
instagram: @mrsdrdahl
yelp: Santa Monica Healing Arts

 

PS: For fun & just in case you might be interested, I’ve used the same inspiring base recipe for years for all of my butternut squash soup variations…you can find it here: http://www.chowhound.com/recipes/roasted-butternut-squash-soup-30466

PPS: I swear I don’t work for Lucero Olive Oil, lol.  But I do LOVE their amazing healthy gourment products! Ridiculous good. Every time our family makes the trip up to visit Dr. Eric’s mom or sister in Nor Cal, we stop off and visit the beautiful tasting room in Corning.  And we order them online a lot too.  They have great sales and super gift sets which are great for all our foodie friends and stocking stuffers. Just because it was so tasty with our butternut squash seeds, here’s the link for the Favolosa EVOO, but be sure to check out the Persian Lime as well (I think it’s even on sale right now!), and all the super balsamic vinegars! http://www.lucerooliveoil.com/single-variety-evoo/favolosa-extra-virgin-olive-oil.html

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lateral learning – why a school garden is so important!

PPPS: Last year, about this time, Dr. Eric sponsored the most amazing thing at the Kentwood School Garden for the 3rd graders and their school-grown butternut squash.  It was truly one of the highlights of my health/food/garden/mom life! Kids need school gardens – for so many reasons. Need a little inspiration?  Check out my last year’s October blog “The Whole Kit and Caboodle for Kentwood” here: http://santamonicahealingarts.com/?p=1156

 

 

 

 

“The Whole Kit & Caboodle” for Kentwood ~ Sponsored by Dr. Eric

 

UnknownSo do you guys know what lateral thinking is? Have you heard of project-based learning? You may have recently, especially if you have a student in LAUSD as the new Common Core standards are trying to encompass a bit more of it.  Well, just for fun here’s the definition::

“Lateral thinking is solving problems through an indirect and creative approach, using reasoning that is not immediately obvious and involving ideas that may not be obtainable by using only traditional step-by-step logic. The term was coined in 1967 by Edward de Bono.”pimr

If any of you have visited Dr. Eric for help solving a problem that as it turns out, is not straight chiropractic, or if you’ve been there for a headache for example, and walked away with a saliva test kit and two bottles from Standard Process, then you know kinda what I mean.

Dr. Eric likes to use integrated alternative therapies to find the root cause of a person’s dis-ease. He’s not one to rack and crack, and he’s not a big fan of band-aids (metaphorically speaking). He likes to find the ROOT cause of your pain and works to put you back in balance, homeostasis. Often this requires a lot of lateral thinking. That’s one of the reasons why he is good at what he does.  He thinks outside the box – the box of most Western Medicine – and he can help you heal.10984159_10204528413145241_5732512652723273381_n

 

Another thing that Dr. Eric does is sponsor #minimrsdrdahl’s school garden. Which helps to foster the same thing: Lateral learning. That way the kids get the whole kit and caboodle too. Literally. Nutrition, sure, gardening, agriculture, sure, but also history, science, literature, math, social studies, art, homemaking, vocabulary, and even sex-ed.

Today for example, was a red letter day in the Kentwood School garden.

8 months ago, in March, Kentwood kids planted butternut squash seeds. Students visited their budding seedlings during recess most days and watered them as they grew.  Over the summer, our PTO-sponsored drip watering system fed those plants as they turned into vines.  Upon our return in August, they were growing like mad, flowering, and had some small squash beginning. By Fall, those squash were ready to pick.10955207_10204579795429766_4143826007299995770_n

Last year, Dr. Eric was the one who figured that the school, and students would best benefit if we preserved the fruits of their labor, especially over the summer. Luckily, I’m good at canning. And Dr. Eric, ever the one for linguistic puns, coined the term “Koala Food” (the school mascot is Kenny the Koala).  We will be selling the finished products this coming spring, in our silent auction at Family Fun Day. All organic, kid-grown, school garden produce and recipes. So far, we have at least two dozen jars put up.10313056_10204579709067607_3056720641652066879_n

Recently, our wonderful school librarian approached me. She had thought of me, she said, when she read a darling book called “Sophie’s Squash” (Pat Zietlow Miller & Anne Wilsdorf). The story is about a little girl who thinks a butternut squash is so neat, she decides to make it her new toy.  She draws a face on it and takes it with her everywhere just like a baby doll; She cannot be swayed to eat it or switch it out for another toy.  When the squash starts to finally get soft, she consults the farmers market…they tell her to tuck it away in a bed of soil and give it lots of water and it will be happy.  The next season, she visits her squash-friend only to find that it has grown into a vine and has produced more baby squash. Delightful story.11159506_10204724049236021_2094583681756832266_n

“AWESOME!” I said. We just happen to have a butternut squash growing in the school garden right now! Our fantastic librarian went on to approach the fabulous 3rd grade teachers, who’s science unit this year covers seeds and planting. I mentioned that I had recently made “Koala Food” butternut squash soup that they could taste too! And it all fell into place.

Today, 8 months of work came to fruition. I witnessed first hand, the reasons why I do what I do. Why Dr. Eric spends his weekends toiling in the school garden.

So. much. learned. (with only 15 minutes per class!)11060042_10205786786003776_2051472937121527132_n

The 3rd graders and I talked about seasons, the Fall and what that means, what holidays happen in the Autumn, what foods they associate with those holidays. We discussed how butternut squash is similar to pumpkin moreso than zucchini, and how one butternut squash varietal differs from another. I showed them three different kinds of butternut squash.  They recognized the similarity when comparing themselves with their classmates: all human, all kids, all the same, but different – different colors, different shapes, different sizes. Fun new adjectives were used to describe the differences (of the fruits): oblong, bulbous, knobby, smooth, oval, orange, golden, big, giant, petite, graceful, curvy. We learned the meaning of “heirloom,” which like their family’s collectibles or finery, is a very special, handed-down-through-generations seed type that isn’t usually available in standard grocery stores. They recognized thusly the importance of supporting local family farms and supporting their local farmer’s market. 11137164_10205656077856154_2385955535524519663_n

In the eating of the recipe itself, the students had an opportunity to enhance the dimension of their learning.  Sensory appreciations: taste, texture, sweet, salty…”In the soup are apples, onions, sage, cinammon, can you taste them?” I asked. “Can you smell the cinammon?” We passed around fresh sage…doesn’t it complement the flavor of the squash to have a fresh leaf on top? what does the flavor remind you of? It’s a bit like pumpkin pie but not as sweet…do you know the word savory?”11033976_10205733629514897_271465502817944093_n
I asked them questions that made them think or recognize things they might very well have known but never connected. Did they know that butternut squash originated in Mexico? Or that it was cultivated by Native Americans? I asked them if they had any family recipes that were their family’s “heirlooms.” What other vegetables are orange? what makes them so? Betacarotene I told them.  Its good for eyesight. That squash contains a whole alphabet of vitamins: A,B,C, iron, potassium, zinc, and that those things are anti-oxidants that help reduce risk of cancer, cholesterol, high blood pressure, heart attack, and stroke – in short, keep you healthy and happy. The seeds contain tryptophan which is used by your body to help your brain. These orange fruits of fall are excellent for your eyes, and more importantly, your hearts and your brains. Perhaps this is another reason why Sophie chose the squash as her friend? Because what is better for your heart or brain than a really good friend? Or your favorite toy? And to remind them daily, the Librarian will keep the garden-fresh butternut squash in the library, wearing its drawn-on happy face, just like Sophie’s.10420118_10205740252080457_7810252065439398266_n

After we tasted the soup, we walked into the garden and saw another squash growing, and other fall fruits, pumpkins and zucchini. The kids noticed the squash blossoms so we talked about these flowers being either male or female and how the plant needs both sexes living happily side by side in order to grow the fruits. The children surmised that it was, of course, the female flowers that grew the squash. Some of them had eaten stuffed squash blossoms before, filled with Mexican (Queso Fresco), French (Chèvre), Greek (Feta), or Italian (Mozzarella) cheese. If they dared, we tasted the leaves too, which are likewise edible, good for you and can even be used in stir-fry, salads, or instead of tortillas for wraps.11954587_10205781085461266_484969480295904598_n

The kids, if interested, will take home the recipe, allowing them to practice at home both the culinary arts, as well as their math (measurement) skills.  Their teachers will dispearse seeds from one of our school-grown squashes and they will grow their own plants, eventually transplanting them, once again, into the school garden. I am hoping they will talk about this with their families which will in turn foster a growing interest in vegetables and eating well. Perhaps, come spring, they will encourage their parents to bid on the Koala Food items in the silent auction, again encouraging health and wellness at home, as well as providing funding for next year’s school garden.10430458_10205741092701472_4669364781077671490_n

There are lots of expressions that come to mind to describe an experience so all encompassing.  The whole kit and caboodle is one.  Going the whole nine yards is another.  The whole shebang.  Going whole hog, going all in…the list goes on. But it is EVERYTHING.

Days spent like this at school are FUN. Learning like this will motivate these kids to grow into future doctors, scientists, farmers, writers, artists, healers, problem solvers. When they grow up, I hope they make a difference in this world…help us find some balance. And, I sure hope they will be as good at what what they do as Dr. Eric is at what HE does. safe_image.php

Oh, and in case you are FIRED up to try the recipe, this is the one that I loosely followed: http://www.chowhound.com/recipes/roasted-butternut-squash-soup-30466

If you’d like to read the darling book: http://www.amazon.com/Sophies-Squash-Pat-Zietlow-Miller/dp/0307978966

Bon Appetite!

Coby Dahlstrom (aka #mrsdrdahl)

for

Dr. Eric P. Dahlstrom, D.C., L.Ac.
Santa Monica Healing Arts3rd grade

Providing Integrated Alternative Therapies, Chiropractic Care, and Acupuncture in Santa Monica since 1999 (http://santamonicahealingarts.com). Check out our 5-star Review on Yelp (http://www.yelp.com/biz/santa-monica-healing-arts-santa-monica) or find us on facebook (https://www.facebook.com/pages/Santa-Monica-Healing-Arts)

~ follow us on20151019_142541

twitter: @SMHealingArts
facebook: “Santa Monica Healing Arts”
instagram: @mrsdrdahl
pinterest: @SMHealingArts
yelp: Santa Monica Healing Arts

Sophie’s Squash is the reipient of a number award for children’s literature: 

Booklist Books for Youth Editors’ Choice-WINNER

Golden Kite Award for Fiction-WINNER

School Library Journal Best Book of the Year-WINNER

Children’s Book Committee at Bank Street College Children’s Book of the Year-SELECTION 2014

Charlotte Zolotow Award-HONOR 2014

Ezra Jack Keats New Writer/Illustrator Award-HONOR 2014

Inspired by facebook’s query: “What’s on your mind?”

Well Facebook, let me tell you “what’s on my mind…”

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The facebook post that made me think…

I am not a good cook, nor do I particularly like gardening. I am not a “foodie,” and I don’t post pictures of food to boast or make you drool. I am certainly not going to write a cookbook (thank you though to all of you who complement, like, and repost!). I post ‪#‎DrEricsdinner‬ because I believe that the future of humanity is at stake (Special thank you Caitlin Blue for helping that click for me the other day with your political cartoon post!). I am serious. Food is the answer. Food is the medicine. We have become too removed from our natural selves. The Earth gave us the answers and we, in our pursuit of money & more importantly convenience, have forgotten.

Our bodies, this planet, are nothing but a complex chemical experiment that is gone awry. Every SINGLE thing we put on or in ourselves and on this planet complicates our existence. Now, I’m all for the progess that we’ve made- antibiotics can save lives and indoor plumbing sure did, and 3D printing is mind-blowing – but let’s not forget where we came from, let’s not go overboard, and let’s not blindly believe the establishment. This Earth gave us all we needed. The cures lie in the seasonal gifts from her. Cancer, endocrine disruptors, MTHFR, inflammation, heart attack, depression, jealousy, greed, laziness, cholesterol, auto-immune disorders, lupis, gluten intolerance, bladder infections, leaky gut, rheumatiod arthritis, anxiety…insanity…are the result of un unbalanced world. DIS-EASE. What good is wealth if you don’t have health?

I will not walk in a race for the cure, or buy a plastic BPA filled pink bracelet. I believe cures (and prevention), and not just for Cancer, lie in the organic, local, seasonal food we eat, the raw food supplements that we take, the available herbs all around us. And more importantly, what we DON’T eat. Weston Price knew this as early as the 1930s (http://www.westonaprice.org/…/principles-of-healthy-diets-2/). Traditional Chinese Medicine has cured for 2,000 years (http://www.drweil.com/…/Traditional-Chinese-Medicine-Dr-Wei…). The Ancient Celts cured with herbal medicine (http://glmorrisbda.hubpages.com/…/Healing-Herbs-of-the-Anci…), as did the native Americans (http://www.healthandhealingny.org/tradition_hea…/native.html). I do not believe that mandatory vaccination is effective or constituional (not up for debate with me). I believe in building a healthy well-tested immune system. I believe in PREVENTION. It is NOT ok to have a child look at lettuce growing in the ground and say, “wow, I’ve never seen that…or eaten it.”11054469_708175609309876_659682563476613235_n

It’s not okay that my drinking water is infused with someone else’s prescription medicine.  It’s not okay that I’m being forced to inhale Alzheimer’s and Cancer from the sky and your car. I don’t appreciate pesticides in my groundwater or plastics in the ocean. I take every precaution, every day, to undo what others have done to our Earth in order to pad their pockets. These meals you see? They are my CURE. I am saving humanity one squash at a time. One quiche at a time. One child at a time.11218691_919337164826016_7599357560218646815_n

More pressingly, I do not have faith that humanity will reach an acceptable way to deter gun violence, not with beurocracy, pharmaceuticals, therapy, or incarceration. Not when so many people’s chemical imbalances have psychiatric consequences -and monetary ones – both shooters AND politicians. Virtually every single one of the perpetrators in the mass shootings of the past 20 years was or had been on some prescription psychotropic medication – read SSRIs (http://m.disclose.tv/…/every_mass_shooting_over_last…/119552).  Depression and anxiety can be both caused and cured by what you do or don’t eat.  And poverty often causes folks to eat the WRONG stuff.  Don’t even get me started on Politicians and their drug convictions – crack, Oxycodone, Marajuana, Cocaine, the list goes one – and they have money.  It is not about class or social status. We are all out of balance. We are the blind leading the blind. And all of this is entrenched in somebody’s bottom line. No one other than you benefits from your growing your own food though…ask Ron Finley (“growing your own food is like growing your own money”- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EzZzZ_qpZ4w).

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How I know food can balance…my supplements.

Our world is toxic. The only way is to reconnect with our Mother. Treat her and all her creatures with kindness. Find homeostasis. Put your hands in the dirt. Work hard. Find the knowledge that our forebearers had and we have lost. It is possible. Balancing ourselves is possible – hey, I know a guy who can help you do it..Dr. Eric Dahlstrom at Santa Monica Healing Arts! Understand of course that what I believe and what he believes are NOT the same, but he CAN balance you that’s for sure. He did me, that’s why I know its possible (thank you very much to Apex Energetics Serotone Active K-38, and Estrovera specifically).

I am not supermom. I am not very good at debate, and I am certainly not patient enough to be a teacher. I am way too opinionated, and I don’t even really like children?! (Wait did I say that out loud?) But I do enjoy making a difference. I love seeing the joy and astonishment on kids’ faces in the school garden when we eat the celery that they grew right out of the garden. “Wait,” they say, “we can eat this? We don’t have to wash it or anything?” No kid. It’s that easy. It grows, you eat it. No pesticides to wash or bags of plastic to open…”You sure?” They say. Yep I am sure. If only everything could be such a sure thing.

But what I realized the other day, with thanks to my friend Melinda, is that folks might not be getting my message. I hope to inspire. I hope to lead by example. If I can do this thing…make every single meal a political statement, make every single dinner count, so can all of you. The choices we can get ourselves embroiled in are infinate; Each step we take offfers up a landmine of consequences. By using the Buycott Ap (http://www.buycott.com), I know sometimes I’m choosing 6 of one over 1/2 dozen of the other. But I CHOOSE. I make a difference. I put my money where my mouth is and vice versa.

Oh, and… “I’m sorry if the pictures of my political meal are annoying you…I assumed the future of humanity was worth discussing!”

btw: if you enjoyed this rant…you might also enjoy reading my occassional blogs at www.santamonicahealingarts.com! hey, wait, maybe I should make this a blog?! great idea…..!

Coby Dahlstrom (aka #mrsdrdahl)

for

Dr. Eric P. Dahlstrom, D.C., L.Ac.
Santa Monica Healing Arts
Providing Chiropractic Care and Acupuncture in Santa Monica since 1999 (http://santamonicahealingarts.com). Check out our 5-star Review on Yelp (http://www.yelp.com/biz/santa-monica-healing-arts-santa-monica) or find us on facebook (https://www.facebook.com/pages/Santa-Monica-Healing-Arts)
~ follow us on
twitter: @SMHealingArts
facebook: “Santa Monica Healing Arts”
instagram: @mrsdrdahl
pinterest: @SMHealingArts
yelp: Santa Monica Healing Arts

Read more…

Mom’s Turkey Soup

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Reserved Organic Homemade Bone Broth

In loving memory of Lynne M. Taylor

By far one of the BEST recipes of the year.  Pretty much perfection.  And super easy if you have an hour or so during post Thanksgiving clean up.  I’ll dare repeat my October matra, Please don’t waste that BIRD!

First, did you read my October blog on Bone Broth?  If you haven’t, ou might want to:  http://santamonicahealingarts.com/?p=800  A bit longwinded, but a fun “how to” on making bone broth from your holiday bird carcass and why it is incredibly good for you.

Once you’ve done that, then we can do THIS!  Make the soup.  YUMBO.

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Bone Broth & Bay Leaves = Beautiful!

Here’s what we’ll need:

  • 1 Cup of your aforementioned homemade turkey bone broth
  • 1/2 Cup of the set aside “remaining delicious useable chunks” of Turkey meat
  • 3 Cups purified water (we use a reverse osmosis filter on our tap)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 whole organic yellow onion (diced), (You can use any onion mix too, think red, scallions, etc to add even more flavor!)
  • 2-3 organic carrots (chopped)
  • 2-3 sticks organic celery (chopped)
  • additional organic fresh seasonal veggies.  I like to add zucchini, squash, peppers, potatoes,etc. or whatever is fresh from Dr. Eric’s garden!

    IMG_0653

    Chunky Chopped Vegetables: pictured here are onions, zucchini, red bell peppers, & red Cubanelle peppers, in addition to celery & carrots, because that’s what we had fresh from Dr. Eric’s garden

  • 1/4 C organic brown rice.  You may substitute other fun healthy (or un) grains, etc here – ie: quinoa, amaranth, flax seed, chia seed, orzo, alphabet noodes (do they still make those? that’s what my mom always used!  Super fun but not gluten free, I’m afraid)
  • 2-3 cloves fresh organic garlic cloves (minced, pressed, chopped, or whole – your preference)
  • 1/2 tsp celery seed
  • 1 Tbs fresh rosemary (minced)
  • 1 Tbs fresh thyme (minced)
  • 1/2 tsp fresh ground black pepper
  • 1Tbs Salt – I know, that seems like a lot, but trust me, that bone broth you made is LOW sodium thus far. (Preferably Himalayan Pink or Sea Salt as those contain added health benefits)
  • juice of one organic lemon
  • optional: red pepper flakes or finely minced fresh organic jalapeno, serrano, or cayenne pepper to taste*
  • optional toppings: organic fresh chopped parsely & freshly grated Parmesan Cheese

    IMG_0654

    don’t forget to add your set aside “remaining delicious usable chunks” of meat!

Ready?  Ok.  Get out a big pot.  I like to use my Le Creuset Dutch Oven.  Or, you can do this in your crock pot if you need to run some errands, go to work, pick up kids, etc.  Just put it on low and off you go!

Instructions:

Put everything in the pot.  Bring to a boil.  Then turn down the flame and simmer for about an 1/2 hour.  Let cool.   Top with parsley and parmesan.**

Enjoy!

* If you are interested in making an Albondingas-like Mexican-style turkey soup, substitute Cumin for Rosemary & Thyme, be sure to add the hot peppers, put in some corn, and top with fresh chopped cilantro!

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brown rice, rainbow quinoa, chia seed

** We like to serve the soup with a side of cheese toast (Rudi’s gluten free bread with Tillamook extra sharp cheddar!)

AND, finally, a quick reminder of just HOW DARN GOOD FOR YOU the bone broth is:

  • reduces pain & inflammation, makes your joints more supple
  • helps you have healthier hair, skin, & nails
  • heals your gut & promotes healthy digestion
  • reduces your need for meat & protein
  • helps get the toxins out.
  • promotes healthy bones.
  • helps promote healthy sleep
  • inhibits infection
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Everything in the Pot

YOU ARE WHAT YOU EAT.

Hey and guess what?! **HOT TIP** – maybe you are the one, my reader who is infuriated by these cooking posts, or maybe you WANT to eat healthy, but just don’t have the time?  Or maybe you really hate cooking!  I have a solution for you!  Our dear friend, and LONGTIME  Santa Monica Healing Arts client, Claire Chew, will deliver homemade organic bone broth in glass jars to you in your very own home at a very reasonable price!  And not just broth, but all kinds of amazing homemade healthy healing foods…Check it out! http://www.urbanchef-la.com/

Another thought…maybe bone broth just isn’t enough…and your bones & body are still inexplicably aching!  Well, Dr. Eric is always available to help you with an adjustment, acupuncture, cleanse, or whatever you may need to cure your ails.  His gorgeous new office awaits you.  Treat yourself! 310-207-0222

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We like to serve the soup with a side of cheese toast (Rudi’s gluten free bread with Tillamook extra sharp cheddar!)

Cheers..& Stay Healthy!

Coby Dahlstrom (aka #mrsdrdahl)

for

Dr. Eric P. Dahlstrom, D.C., L.Ac.
Santa Monica Healing Arts
Providing Chiropractic Care and Acupuncture in Santa Monica since 1999 (http://santamonicahealingarts.com). Check out our 5-star Review on Yelp (http://www.yelp.com/biz/santa-monica-healing-arts-santa-monica) or find us on facebook (https://www.facebook.com/pages/Santa-Monica-Healing-Arts)
~ follow us on
twitter: @SMHealingArts
facebook: “Santa Monica Healing Arts”
instagram: @mrsdrdahl
yelp: Santa Monica Healing Arts

Whatcha gonna do with all that junk? all that junk inside your…

pumpkins 2014

Dahlstrom Pumpkin Magic 2014! (I kind of feel like the one on the top right.) The BEST thing about carving pumpkins is the ROASTED SEEDS! A GREAT anti-oxidant (and who doesn’t need more of those after All Hallows?)

Happy November!  

(Translation: Welcome to Junk Belly Central and Gut Healers R US)

The great thing about November is that now we get to eat HEALTHY stuff!  Yep. I’m comin’ at ya with yet ANOTHER post about #bonebroth! (insert eye roll here)

No but really, last month we had so much fun learning how to make it, preserve it, & how it was healthy!  Now guess what?  Yep!  We all can be super grateful that we did!  Gut healing here we come!…

—–

Let’s address firstly, some of the Dangers of Halloween.

No not witches, bats & goblins.  Rather all the crap that gets ingested and why it is horrendous.  How we got Junk Belly…

chili 2014

All organic all veggie chili cooking away on the stove in prep for the big fright night.

Right?  I mean, who else is suffering from post-halloween coma?  Wow, fun really costs me these days.  And my family too.  Goes to show how well we really do eat normally, that a few days of pizza, ice cream, soda, cupcakes, and store bought halloween candy can send us all into a tailspin.  Although I am proud to say that I only ate 3 pieces of halloween candy – specifically fun sized peanut m&m’s, Almond joy & Snickers – and only 1/2 a piece of pepperoni pizza (bleck).  For me, rather it’s the gluttony of too much *spirit* lol.  As far as food goes, we really go all out trying to be certain that everyone gets a healthy meal before the fright night begins.  Every year Dr. Eric & I host a full chili bar with all organic homemade chilis, both meat and all veggie, complete with a full scale mostly gluten-free topping bar.  Nothing but the best before the kids bust a gut later.

chili bar 2014

The chili topping bar this year…just realized I forgot to put out the cliantro and parsley in my race to the death! damn.

My son is only now recovering from his NASTY bout with *IBS* (a stupid anagram to describe the junk belly that comes along with eating a standard American diet).  Yep, because he’s a kid, and he thought he could get away with it (or maybe he just didn’t think at all), there was loads of unsupervised Halloween candy, pizza, soda, bread, muffins.  In short, binge eating.  He is the son of a nutrional counselor and he knows better.  But truly, he was just being a kid.  Poor thing.

Some succint words about Halloween Candy (aka poison from the devil meant to induce long term disease and reliance upon perscription medication in order to benefit the economic prosperity of a very privilaged few who eat none of it likely).  OOOPS!  sorry!  I didn’t mean to get political.  It just slipped out.  Forgive me.

The thing is, store bought Halloween candy is just so incredibly nasty bad for you in every way imaginable!  To list only a precious few:

1) Partially Hydrogenated Corn Syrup (a fancy way to say Trans Fat).  I mean if the FDA is considering removing Trans Fat oils from the “generally recognized as safe” (GRAS) list?  Come on!  Not safe for human consumption?  Why put that s*#t in kids’ candy?  Lord have mercy.  Trick indeed – No treat.

dr's potion

Dr. Eric’s potion of death….

For more info click here: http://www.naturalhealthadvisory.com/daily/natural-health-101/why-are-trans-fats-bad-even-the-fda-agrees-they-are-worse-than-expected/

2) High Fructose Corn Syrup.  HFCS represents more than 40% of caloric sweeterners.  They “contain anywhere from 55 to 90 percent fructose and are derived from corn, a heavily subsidized (read: cheap) crop. Manufacturers love HFCS because, especially when compared to regular sugar, it’s cheaper, sweeter and produced in abundance.  But studies have shown that chronically high consumption of fructose in rodents leads to [liver and systemic] insulin resistance, obesity, type 2 diabetes mellitus, and high blood pressure.”  It is not the same thing as cane sugar.  Not by a longshot. 

For more info click here: http://www.sott.net/article/288056-The-evils-of-High-Fructose-Corn-Syrup-It-really-is-that-bad-for-you

brain 2014 - low rez

#brainfood – what? eating brains doesn’t make you smart?

3) HFCS from GMO Corn.  Uh-oh, she said GMO.  Why worry?  That’s a whole encyclopedia of hot topic.  but I’m guessing that if you are here on Dr. Eric’s blog, you kinda know why.  Sum it up with this:  If the corn is biologically & genetically changed on the cellular level so that it will kill the insects who eat it, why would YOU want to eat it?  On that note, the way that it kills said insects is eerily similar to the way that it kills rats in laboratory studies, by causing cancer, diet related diseases, gastro-intestinal disorders, allergies, etc.  Again, why wouldn’t you also be killed?  Finally, if it is genetically created to resist the herbicide/pesticides that are sprayed onto it to further resist pests, then that means that that same corn is COATED in pesticice that is again, meant to kill pests.  If it will kill pests, it will KILL YOU TOO.  Stop buying GMOs and you can stop buying pink bows in October. No brainer.

4) Carrageenan. Never heard of it?  If you have, wait, isn’t that “organic?”  Well, yes.  It is derived from red-seaweed so there is nothing “fake” about it, therefore it qualifies as organic.  But does that translate to “good for you?”  Nope.  What is it for?  Why do they put it in there?  It is a filler.  For consistency.  Usually added to milk, milk products, and non-dairy milk substitutes, carrageenan creates a creamy thicker fuller consistency while similtaneously thinning out the actual product making it more cost effective.  Cheapskates making a profit off of your tummy trouble.  Carrageenan has been shown to cause serious inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract and liver as well as intestinal abnormalities.  Recently, “the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer and the National Research Council of the United States have deemed carrageenan to be a carcinogen” (ie: causes cancer).

For more information click here: http://bodyunburdened.com/carrageenan/

And for a list of Carrageenan free companies click here: http://t.co/Vetw41LkZm

5) Child Slavery.  Nope, not a costume.  This is real.  “Most chocolate sold in the U.S. comes from cocoa farms where farmers work in unsafe conditions, receive below poverty wages, many of them children under 14 years old who are forced to work and denied education…The Ivory Coast is the world’s largest cocoa producer, providing 43% of the world’s cocoa…A 2002 report from the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture about cocoa farms in the Ivory Coast and other African countries estimated there were 284,000 children working on cocoa farms in hazardous conditions. U.S. chocolate manufacturers have claimed they are not responsible for the conditions on cocoa plantations since they don’t ‘own them’.”  So, if you are going to consume chocolate, or let your CHILDREN eat chocolate, please don’t do it at the cost of other childrens’ well being.  Buy Fair Trade.  

For more information click here: http://www.treehugger.com/green-food/the-bitter-truth-about-chocolate.html

For a list of Fair Trade chocolate brands click here: http://orgcns.org/1shlX7Y

life lemons -lower res

minidrdahl “When LIfe Gives You Lemons…” I wish he’d make a bit more lemonade instead of eating pretzels!!!

And yes, you may have heard about companies like good ol’ American Hershey’s commiting to fair trade chocolate only (more info here: http://fairtradeusa.org/…/hershey-21st-century-cocoa…).  While it is true that they have publically stated a commitment to fair trade, those kinds of changes in multinational food coorporations take decades to actually take effect.  In the meantime, my bet is that they are hoping to increase they’re profit margin by jumping on the fair trade bandwagon and children are still suffering.  Require proof.  Be safe.  Be kind.  Buy fair trade.

Oh, and on a lighter note, well, maybe not lighter on your belly….

6) Wheat/Gluten.  Surprised?  I bet.  Why on earth would you need gluten in candy?  For the same reason you need it in baked goods.  A binding agent.  Or sometimes as barley malt for that malted flavor.  Just a handfull of the many candies that contain gluten?: any licorice (including twizzlers, sour punch candy straws, etc.), kit-kat bars, whoppers, twix bars, crunch bars, & milky way bars.  As I mentioned above, even if you do NOT have celiac disease or are gluten intolerant, gluten is just plain bad for happy gut health.  Over time it can cause all kinds of stomach, intestinal, or systemic disorders including IBS, leaky gut, celiac disease, thryroid issues, or many different auto-immune disorders.  Wheat/Gluten can also seriously effect brain chemistry causing depression or any number of brain imbalances.

For more information, click here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IvUgcLQOUSA&noredirect=1

and another good one is here: https://t.co/dBAo5TRZPJ

Wait!  We didn’t even get to the MOST BASIC of all the many bad ingredients…

cali cat 2014-lower res

This one is enough sugar for me. My Cali-cat. Yep, she got a belly ache too. She just complains less.

7) SUGAR. I mean, haven’t you all seen that rampant viral facebook post about how your brain looks the same on sugar as it does on COKE?? (And I mean cocaine not CocaCola although that is really bad too.) You can find that here: http://mic.com/articles/88015/what-happens-to-your-brain-on-sugar-explained-by-science And here’s another more explanation of why it is so bad: http://wellnessmama.com/15/harmful-effects-of-sugars/  The point is, it’s bad.  Addictive, disease causing, and exhausting.  A quick fix and gone in an instant.  Not a good source of sustained energy or nutrition.  Just the worst.  Period.  And to top it all off, recently, studies prove that sugar, all sugar, doesn’t only worsen existant cancer, but also increases your chances of developing cancer, and wait…yep. CAUSES CANCER.  For more info on that, click here: http://eatlocalgrown.com/article/13456-research-reveals-how-sugar-causes-cancer.html

 

Ok, so now that we have figured out where all the EVIL came from this past holiday & thus how my son got so SICK….Let’s get to fixing him (and me).

This week #minidrdahl was only allowed to ingest six things (GAWD was he pissed!):

sick wyatt-low res

Being forced to drink bone broth…it was like pulling teeth! But, he finally admitted, it truly did make his belly better.

Peppermint tea (with raw honey), plain organic yogurt (with raw honey), brown rice cakes (seaweed ok), organic applesauce (cinnamon flavored ok), dairy free probiotics (read yokult, good belly etc.), and YEP YOU GUESSED IT!  Homemade organic chicken BONE BROTH! woot woot!  This short list consitutes some of THE FINEST gut healing rememdies known to man.  Along with some acupuncure from Dr. Dad, some gentle yoga pose instruction from Mom, and more than a few jet-propelled expulsions, minidrdahl is feeling MUCH better and was back at school today, finally.

You too can recieve this valuable assitance with Halloween Junk Belly recovery! Call for your appointment with Dr. Eric NOW! 310-207-0222 (jk but totally not).

Although…NOW, the boy says that he is having leg pain and still has a lot of sinus congestion…residual systemic reaction?  It’s not isolated in the gut folks; What you eat is what you are.  Pervasive.  BAD Allergies and a little asthma?  In my opinion it’s all a result of the BAD FOOD.  But that is me, Dr. Mom, self-diagnosing (Dr. Eric hates it when I do that…thus the title #mrsdrdahl! lol).

drink up 2014- low res

The Death of me! Drink up Witches!!!”

Or maybe you are like me this week.  Sluggish, swollen, sore, and grumpy.  When the Big Event is over, the system just kinda shuts down, like, “Um, I’m done!”  I know you won’t be surprised when I tell you that my back is out, AGAIN.  I have that acursed mushy bruised feeling all over my body.  Happens every damn time!  I have “damped down” or so they call it in TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) too many sweets, excessive caffine, or alcohol will do it.  Plus, although red wine is an anti-oxidant, it still makes my wrists hurt.  Its the nitriates maybe?  But prolly more than that.  There are several other obvious signs that my body chemistry has gotten out of whack.  I mean, the stress of a high pressure guest filled evening in my home, one that takes cleaning and preparations and happiness and socializing and guests and clean up?   Yep, causes depletion!  This week too, I’ve got a herpes blister on my chin, a canker sore on my mouth, and my hair is falling out.  I’m going to have to haul my own self into the office.  Gonna get me some acupuncture and cupping too!  Be like me!  Visit Santa Monica Healing Arts.  No no, really, do. DO.

 

But, why worry about gut health?  I mean, it’s just a stomach ache right?  It’ll pass.  Pop some Tums and get over it?  Not so fast fastguy…

**ooooh! time out.  Fun fact:***  did you know that Tums is ridonkulous?  (our opinion).  Tums was created to cure excess stomach acid.  But most people who suffer from heartburn actually have a LACK of stomach acid, causing digestive failure and thus leaving the food to rot in the stomach.  This rotten food creates acid which thus creates acid reflux.  Tums doesn’t fix THAT kind of acid.  What does fix that  ironically, is MORE stomach acid – to help digest that stagnant food.  Guess what?  An actual really truly great stomach acid whole food supplement is a Standart Process product called Zypan (available at Dr. Eric’s office!).  Also the kicker is that Tums’ slogan advertizes that it “is not just an antacid but also a calcium supplement!”  Well, yes, Calium Bicarbonate contains Calcium, but an non-acidic environment prevents absorbtion of calcium in the stomach.  You’d only absorb the Calcium as a supplement if the product was defective and NOT decreasing the acid in the stomach.  So if the product does what it says it does than it doesn’t do what it says it does?  Whatever.  Just don’t eat crappy food.

 

But back to our topic at hand.  Gut Health.

After Halloween, there’s no doubt that you’ve got an excess of sugar in your system.  There’s another thing that likes sugar besides my son.  YEAST.

You guys know that there are good bacteria and bad bacteria in your gut right?  So there are these YEAST populations.  They do their job by eating all the crappy sugar that you put in your face.  But guess what happens when you eat too much sugar?  Pro-biotics get eaten alive, and an imbalance ensues.  Don’t feed your yeasts!  Ladies, you all know about a yeast infection right?  UNPLEASANT.  So, a systemic yeast infection?  What is that?  When those yeasties have prevailed and have come to inhabit your entire body system causing inflammation, bloating, pain, joint pain, soreness, god knows what.  I’ve had a systemic yeast infection on a few occassions, mostly in my late 20’s & usually post Valentine’s Day when I have consumed WAYYYYY too many See’s Candies.  They suck.  God they are delicious.  So, my son and I might BOTH be having a systemic yeast infection currently.  His from straight up sugar, mine from the sugar that resides in alcohol (because I am so *good spirited!*).  For more information about candida overgrowth from sugar click here: http://t.co/w695qzy23z  It’s a BITCH I tell you.  And we should know better, but we don’t.  The struggle is REAL.

But, basically, when you’ve thrown your body chemistry all out of whack in so many ways, what you need to do is CLEANSE.

Bummer, but yes.  Cleanse.  Start with only the above mentioned happy gut foods, or even fewer and under a Dr.’s supervision, and slowly, very slowly add back in one gentle food at a time.  Keep away from excess wheat, dairy, spicy, and otherwise complex foods.  You will be able to recognize what is tolerable and also learn what is displeasurable to you system so that you can avoid it in the future.  BTW, Dr. Eric is really good at this kind of assisted cleansing and helping you track your food patterns to find problems.  He has all the whole-food supplements to assist your body and great Metagenics detox products as well.

Poor #minidrdahl was PISSED to limit his food like this, and we didn’t even do a prolonged cleanse, only two or three days.  I told him “Guess what?  Sometimes what you don’t like doing makes you much happier than what you do like doing.”  Weird, I know, but true.

If you have celiac disease or severe gluten intolerance, then click here for more info re gluten recovery: http://t.co/RE9q7MJGvY

In summary, if you’ve screwed yourself up, or even if you haven’t…WHAT YOU GONNA DO WITH ALL THAT JUNK, all that junk inside your …trick or treat bag?  Assuming the ENTIRE bag hasn’t already been consumed, you have some options.

First:  BURN IT.  Not suitable for human consumption.  Especially those less fortunate or in a stressful life threatening situation – they deserve better.  But since our world doesn’t yet work like that…

Who you callin' Witch?

Who you callin’ Witch?

Two:  Call on the Switch Witch with your children (and yourself).  Convince them to “trade” their candy with her.  If they leave it out in a bowl with a note, the Switch Witch can be convinced to come in the middle of the night and swap it out for a non-candy gift that they have really been hoping for.  Magic.  Then burn it!  Or, trade it into a buy back program or operation gratitude – see below.

Three:  Ask your kids to donate it, and then take them to a health food store like Rainbow Acres or Whole Foods to buy “replacement candy.”  Be sure to decide before you enter the establishment how much money you are willing to spend on this “replacement.”  Teach as you go, showing them why one sweet is better than another and what is acceptible to you.  A GREAT teaching moment.

Four:  There are many Dentist Buy Back Programs wherein your local D.D.S. will pay $1 per lb. to “buy back” the candy in order to prevent cavities associated with sugar (wow, we didn’t even get into those issues!)  The dentists then usually ship the candy off to the troops with Operation Gratitude.images

images-2Five:  There are many ways to donate your candy to the Troops if you decide to do so.  A couple of such programs in addition to Operation Gratitude (you can find that one here: http://opgrat.wordpress.com/2013/07/18/halloween-candy-for-the-troops/) are as follows: Any Soldier (http://www.anysoldier.com/index.cfm), Operation Stars & Stripes images-3(http://operationstarsandstripes.org/?page_id=26), or Operation Shoe Box (https://operationshoebox.com/how-you-can-help/candy-donations/).images-1

Six:  Look into the Ronald McDonald House (because the toxic clown likes to give back to attone for the damage he’s done to kids).  You can find your local branch here: http://www.rmhc.org/volunteerrmhcLogo

Seven: Local Shops, Food Pantries, Pediatric Wards, Homeless Shelter, Retirement Homes, and Nursing Centers.  Try to find your local Meals on Wheels here: http://www.citymeals.org/

Eight: Local Churches, Synogogues, and other places of worship.

 

And us?  Well, we’ll be ok.  Things are already on the mend.  We just slurped down some more broth.  And honey, I’ve got junk in the trunk all day long that ain’t goin nowhere nohow.  

And minidrdahl?  I just caught him sneaking a bag of pretzels in his room…DOH!

me halloween 2014

’till death do us part…

Stay sweet, Sugar!

Coby Dahlstrom (aka #mrsdrdahl)

for

Dr. Eric P. Dahlstrom, D.C., L.Ac.
Santa Monica Healing Arts
Providing Chiropractic Care and Acupuncture in Santa Monica since 1999 (http://santamonicahealingarts.com). Check out our 5-star Review on Yelp (http://www.yelp.com/biz/santa-monica-healing-arts-santa-monica) or find us on facebook (https://www.facebook.com/pages/Santa-Monica-Healing-Arts)
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Bone Appetit! Halloween = Soup Season

Question:

chic

This was a Von’s roasted chicken from last night’s last minute dinner. My back was out, so my son rode his skateboard to the market and picked it up for us!

When you stop to grab dinner for your family on the way home, how often do you grab one of those whole roasted chickens (doesn’t really matter from where…)?

Second Question:

If you do, do you throw all the bones, skin, carcass in the trash after you’ve eaten the meat?  Wait…don’t answer! Just TELL ME THAT YOU DON’T…or at least, promise that you won’t? … Please don’t waste that carcass!!!

Here’s why:

IMG_5542

A beautiful “Rosie the Free Range” organic chicken from Sprouts that I roasted in Kerrygold butter & homegrown rosemary, sage, & thyme with organic yukon gold potatoes, himalayan salt and white pepper

Bone Broth is INCREDIBLY good for you.  And SOOOOOPER easy to make. Whether you’re using up the last of your Thanksgiving turkey, or you roasted a “Rosie the Free Range Chicken” for dinner, maybe you grabbed a regular ol’ roasted non-organic bird from Von’s, or even picked up a to-go rotisserie deal from Benny’s, never EVER throw out your bones. Trust me.

I mean really, how many recipes call for chicken broth? Sure, you can buy that boxed organic broth: Pacific, Imagine, or there’s Simple Truth at Ralph’s and “O” brand at Von’s.  You can go un-organic with Swanson, Tyson, or Costco’s Kirkland brand.  Or there’s old school Campbell’s in a can or even the OG like my mom sometimes used on the fly: bouillon cubes.

But why pay ANY money at all for ANY of them, when you can make it yourself for FREE?  And therefore be absolutely certain that you know what’s in it?  I mean free of  ADDITIVES  (ie: MSG – a neurotoxic substance that causes a wide range of reactions, from temporary headaches to permanent brain damage (1)) & no added sodium (read “low-sodium”), and even better if you’ve used an organic free-range chicken, NO GMOs! (Don’t get me started.)

Even more importantly, store bought broth is just not as good for you.  No really, it’s not.  Even organic brands can use high temperature, flash-cooking techinques.  You get broth that is watered down, it doesn’t gel up and you won’t get all the nutrients and benefits of the gooey gelatin from true bone broth made from bone marrow(a).  Store bought commercial broths will fake these “thickening effects” with emulsifiers but the true health benefits are lost (1).

broth

Broth cooking from the other night’s Benny’s rotisseried take out special (another quick, local, last minute option for the family when things were super hectic!)

Don’t have the time you say?  Nah. Watch and learn. easy peasy.

Put the whole friggin’ thing in a big ol’ pot. Fill the pot with water. Boil. You can simmer on low for a few hours, or let it cook and cook and cook for twenty four hours – one gets you more bone for your buck, but both are totally valid.  Go ahead, put the lid on, set the flame low, and go take a shower!  Or cook dinner, or watch a TV show, or help the kids with homework.  You can even do it in your slow cooker while you are at WORK!  No excuses.

And did I mention HOW GOOD IT IS FOR YOU? Well, we’ll get to that later…

Ok, hold up, first things first.  Directions:

IMG_4780

THE best Thanksgiving Turkey EVER! totally organic free-range HUGE bird from Whole Foods cooked with organic, no nitrates added, uncured bacon, rosemary & smoked paprika from my dear friend’s recipe @cookingontheweekends.com! WOWZA!

I mentioned the boiling bit.  If you are making JUST A Bone Broth, and you aren’t planning on making soup of any kind at the moment (fyi, you can use the broth to make many kinds of soup later), then literally add nothing but water, purified if possible.  We have a reverse osmosis spout on our kitchen sink.  But really, since its gonna boil, even tap is ok.  If you have a meat hammer and can crack up the bones a bit great, if not, no worries. If you happen to have some ACV (apple cider vinegar), particuraly Bragg’s, add it too as it helps break down the bones to access the goodness & marrow.  Boil it till it falls apart. You want a nice layer of fatty greasy goodness on top of the water and all kinds of really small weird looking, unidentifiable chicken parts floating around. Boil it with the lid ON, but slightly ajar, so as not to let all the water evaporate.  If you do run low on water, add more and keep on boiling.  Boil it down the the bare bones (get it? – amazing where these expressions really come from!).

IMG_4798

Last year’s AMAZING totally organic free range Thanksgiving Turkey in the pot for broth

If you think you might want to make it into a soup, or are interested in a basic seasoning that covers all the bases, throw in a bay leaf or two while you simmer.  I always do, as this is what my mom did.  My kids even have a “who gets the bay leaf” hunt when we have soup ’cause there’s always at least one that makes it all the way to the table.

Right now, I’m going to stick with simple Chicken Stock and we can do some soup stuff later.  And btw, bone broth can be made of ANY leftover carcass, not just poultry!  Had BarBQ ribs last night? boil ’em down!  A Honeybaked Ham on Easter?  Oh I love hambone soup…BONES ARE GOOOOOOD.

Oh right, so now, you’ve let it simmer forever and you’ve got all the stuff floating around, what do you do?

IMG_4799

Most delicious Bone Broth ever from last year’s amazing Turkey. It was such a big bird, we got quite a lot of delicious broth with hints of bacon and paprika! (notice the sorting of the chicken parts aka fun for doggies).

It’s time to sift.  Let the broth cool WAY DOWN so you can touch it.  And take off your rings if your’re worried about them, as your hands and fingers will get greasy.  I am a real hands-all-in kinda cook; Why use a tool when you can just reach right in? But if you want to stay a bit cleaner, try using a slotted spoon, or a strainer for this party.

IMG_8030

This is Astro, he doesn’t listen very well, or he isn’t very smart, not sure which, but he won’t ever stay out of the kitchen!

Put that cooled vat of chicken stuff right alongside three medium sized bowls. You might only need two, but in my house there are three: 1) Remaining delicious usable chunks of chicken.  2) Actual bones.  3) Skin, cartlidge, fat etc that I can give to my dogs

(if you do this for your hounds, PLEASE be EXTRA careful to sort throught the mess several times – a single tiny chicken bone can choke your pupster to death and even large ones can splinter wrong in their throat and they’ll be a goner.)  I LOVE my pups, who by the way, wait directly under my feet the entire time I am making broth as they know the smell so well(!), so I always treat them to some yummy tidbits of organic chicken goodness.

IMG_0994

This is Kaya. She knows what’s up. she’ll wait patiently just outside the kitchen door with really big puppy dog eyes until I give her the good girl bites.

So now what to do with this mess?  Well, the part that is ok for the doglettes, I don’t give them all at once because that’s a whole lotta grease and fat in one gulp.  Instead, I portion it out to them for the next few days as treats and in thier kibble.  They LOVE LOVE LOVE it!  The bowl that is all bones, wrap up tight in a compostable bag and put in the BLACK garbage can.  And all the yummy bits of chicken that you found and didn’t even know you had?  Well, this is good stuff!  Whole other meals can be made from it.  I like to freeze it and use later for things like Chicken Salad, shepherd’s pie, & other soup recipes.  Instead of a canned chicken, you have your frozen! (so much money saved this way! make the very MOST out of your meal and your money!)

wish bone

minidrdahl & minimrsdrdahl pulling our most recent *Wishbone* – He always wins (he sneaks up the stem)…she gets so pissed.

*Fun Part* – When you boil a whole foul, you will recover the WISHBONE from the pot eventually!  How fun is that?  This was a ritual for me growing up, and I believe my kids find it as fun as I did everytime.  Let that fercula dry for a day and then you can go for it!  Two loved ones or friends, kids or a couple, or strangers for that matter, should hold onto the two “handles” at the base of the fork.  Hold them with the thumb and forefinger only!  Each of you, make a wish…Wait…Make sure no one is cheating by inching up the stem of the bone now… and on the count of three, PULL (not UP but OUT).  Whoever gets the head or top of the bone where it connects, well, their wish will come true.

*Fun Fact* – The furcula (“little fork” in Latin) or wishbone is a forked bone found in birds and some other animals, and is formed by the fusion of the two clavicles. In birds, its primary function is in the strengthening of the thoracic skeleton to withstand the rigors of flight.

As for the Bone Broth, that liquid gold…

How do you save it to use in the future?

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See the three layers? fat on top, gelatin in the middle, and chicken stuff on the bottom. This is a quart sized jar as that day, that’s what I had available, but its a bit hard to try to spoon out all three layers. I prefer pint sized.

Ok, so you have this VERY gelatinous thick almost solid goop.  BONE BROTH.  Very concentrated (especially if you boiled it for a VERY long time – ideally 24 hours).  You may notice that it has separated into layers.  There will be a thick fatty skim on top, a gooey jelloey middle kinda like consome, in fact, it IS consome (Oh jeez…do I have a story about THAT but maybe another time…), and on the bottom are little bits of solid stuff – chicken meat and such, but really tiny bits.

If you’re like me, you will use some of this treasure in the very near future. You’d be surprised how very many recipes call for chicken broth.  You might be cooking rice, or quinoa, or cous cous; Always use 1/2 broth!  Say you are making soup.  Yep it always needs broth.  Steaming spinach or any veggie for that matter?  Always steam with 1/2 broth, braising too.  What about a pasta sauce?  Yep, you’ll need to add broth.  Not kidding.  If you cook at home, you’ll need the broth.  So, put some in a jar and keep it in the fridge.  Right, those pickles that are almost empty?  Eat the last one, dump the juice, rinse the glass bottle, and fill it with this bone broth.  Make sure to get proportioned amounts of all three layers.  Then, keep it handy.  You’ll use that jar full in the next few weeks…

If you need it to last for a bit longer, or you made a whole bunch from a big bird, then you’ll have to freeze or can it.  Hold on…  Don’t get overwhelmed!  It’s way easier than you think, canning that is.  I typically don’t freeze because I don’t like to freeze in plastic and glass expands in the freezer.  So are you ready?  Here we go…

Canning 101:

canning tools

My mother’s canning pot (minus the lid – I managed to loose that somewhere deep in my garage) complete with wire canning rack and my own well-used canning tongs.

First, you’ll need a big pot.  Not just big, but deep (the water will have to cover the tops of the submerged glass canning jars).  I have my mother’s canning pot which I LOVE, and is totally worth having (if you think you’ll use it at least a few times a year, I suggest you invest).  The thing that’s great about a canning pot is the wire canning rack that fits right inside.  You see, the jars can’t touch the bottom of the pan or they will shatter.  So if you’re using any ol’ big ol’ pot, be sure you put something on the bottom of the pan to disperse the heat – like an opened collandar or similar.  (There are a few basic canning tools that you might be tempted to buy, but none of which are really necessary, they just make it all a bit easier if it’s going to be a “thing” you do).

Anyway, fill the pot with water almost to the top, turn on the heat, let it get to a rolling boil.

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These are pint sized ball jars from Ralph’s – they are filled with homegrown homemade pickles but just pretend that is chicken stock

Next, you will need some canning jars (Ball Jars, Mason Jars, etc).  Pint sized is good because you’ll use it up in several meals and it won’t stand open in the fridge too long.  I buy mine at Ralph’s.  If you have an old hardware store in town that carries them, that’s fun and nostalgic.  We had a great visit to the vintage hardware store in Dunsmuir, just outside of Shasta, this past Labor Day.  Darling place!  Been there since 1894, and it had a great selection of canning supplies (http://www.dunsmuirhardware.com/).  But you can also get them at Target, Wallmart, Amazon.com, etc.

Ok, Gonna make this short…

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I always feel like celebrating when all my jars seal! woo hoo!

Sterilize the jars, lids & rings by rinsing in really hot water.  Let the lids & rings soak.  Fill the jars with broth (again be sure to get proportionate amounts of all three layers of goodness).  WIPE THE RIMS of the jars carefully (if there is stuff on there, they won’t seal).  Place the warm lid on the top, then put on the metal ring loosely.  Submerge the jars in the pot of boiling water.  Leave them there for 12-18 minutes, turning the boil down just a bit.  Removing them is easier if you have a wire rack, or a set of canning tongs, but doable if you don’t, you just need some kinda tong to reach into the boiling water, and not mess with the lids too much or you might undo the seal.  Set the jars to cool in a flat area.  Do not touch them.  As they cool, you will hear a “popping” sound as each one sets its seal.  SUCH A GREAT NOISE!  Like popping a champagne cork!  Woo Hoo!  Celebratory as you know you’ve succeeded in sealing the jar!  When they’ve fully cooled, wipe them down, and you can store them for ALL TIME!  Amazing really. They are sealed so as long as they are refridgerated, they last FOR EVAAAAH.

AWESOME right?  But here’s the REALLY AWESOME part (if I haven’t lost you and you’re still reading)…

WHY IT IS SO DARN GOOD FOR YOU!

Albondigas, or Mexican chicken soup, from homemade bone broth, with homegrown zucchini, carrots, onions, & cliantro

Here’s a quick bit o’ history.  Basically every culture agrees in the healing property of bone broth…let’s review a few:

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Homemade Korean “Pho-style” soup from Thanksgiving turkey bone broth, master tonic, and homegrown cabbage, onions, bell peppers, sugar snap peas, radish, & lime with cilantro, sesame seeds, Braggs Aminos, & homemade “Rooster Sauce” from habanero chilis. Rice Vinegar & Sesame Oil.

The use of gelatin as a theraputic agent dates back to the ancient Chinese (1).  Traditional Chinese Medecine (TCM) uses bone broth to strengthen the kidney, support the digestive system, and build blood (2).  It is a Qi & blood builder (3).  Bone broths are nutrient-dense, and include calcium, potassium, magnesium, and incorporate the marrow of the animal.  Marrow helps our Jing essence (essence from the Kidney).  “Bone marrow is produced by Kidney Jing, so infusing it in bone broth is like drinking a cup of Jing” (3). 

images-6But what is Kidney Jing?  TCM tells us we are all born with it.  It is the “essence” we are given from our mom and dad at birth.  There is a sort of “reserve” of this energy in all of us and as we age, we begin to use it up.  When we are stressed, work too hard, have too much “fun,” are short on sleep, or otherwise over-tax ourselves, our Kidney essence becomes deficient and we become exhausted.  Filling up your resevoir again is wonderful! (3)  Thus the bone broth!

We’ve heard all of the slogans from the 90’s “Chicken Soup for the Soul,” etc.  Those don’t come from thin air.  “Fish broth will cure anything,” is another South American proverb. (1)  All proverbs arrive from years of repitition of knowledge.  They should always be taken seriously, not with a grain of salt! 

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Matzo Ball Soup – Jewish “Penicillin” (Not homemade. But a pic I lifted from google images. Not gluten free so I haven’t made it in a while…but it’s a goodie!

“The term “Jewish penicillin” is used for chicken soup, because it is known to inhibit cell inflammation and mitigate cold symptoms.  And the English have sipped beef tea, or beef broth, since the Victorian era.” (2)

images-10

“Liberty leading the People” by Eugène Delacroix

images-8

The steam digester: a high-pressure cooker invented by French physicist Denis Papin in 1679.

In 1682, Denis Papin, a Frenchman, invented a kind of pressure cooker called the “digestor,” that cooked bones or meat with steam to extract the gelatin.  In the same way that we take vitamins to answer our current nutritional shortages, gelatin was the go to 200 years ago, particularly in France.  Although gelatin is not a complete protein, containing primarily the amino acids arginine and glycine, but a little goes a long way and much broth can be made of a few measely bones. “During the siege of Paris, when vegetables and meat were scarce, a doctor named Guerard put his patients on gelatin bouillon with some added fat and they survived in good health.”(1)

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French Onion Soup made from homemade chicken/beef bone broth – recipe from @thepioneerwoman.com Mais Oui! Merci!

Through the 1950’s the French were the leaders in gelatin research.  Again, think consome right?  In a French restaurant, you can literally order a bowl of plain beef gelatin.  They found it useful in the treatment many diseases including peptic ulcers, tuberculosis, diabetes, muscle diseases, infectious diseases, jaundice and cancer.  Babies had fewer digestive problems when gelatin was added to their milk. (1)

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Francis M. Pottenger, Jr. (1901–1967) In his treatment of respiratory diseases such as TB, asthma, allergies and emphysema, he always highlighted proper diet based on the principles discovered by Weston Price.

The American researcher Francis Pottenger (Pottenger’s Cats) stated that gelatin is a hydrophilic colloid, thus it attracts and holds liquids & facilitates digestion by attracting digestive juices towards the food in the gut. (1)

images-11

Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin “Tell me what you eat, and I will tell you what you are.”

Famed and oft quoted French gastronome Brillant-Savarin stated that “Soup is a healthy, light, nourishing food…good for all of humanity; it pleases the stomach, stimulates the appetite and prepares the digestion.”(1)  But of course he is better known for having coined the expression “Tell me what you eat, and I will tell you what you are.”  Or as we say nowadays: You are what you eat.  He was a pretty smart guy that Brillant-Savarin, also coming up with the theory that sugar and white flour were the cause of obesity and suggested eating only protein-rich ingredients of which bone broth was one.  I think he was on to something. 

WAIT! did I lose you??? Was the history lesson too boring?

Hey  – I’m just trying to show you how IMPORTANT it is to not throw away those bones, remember?  

And finally, some brass tack factual reasons WHY bone broth is healthy (4, 5): 

  • reduces pain & inflammation, makes your joints more supple
  • helps you have healthier hair, skin, & nails
  • heals your gut & promotes healthy digestion
  • reduces your need for meat & protein
  • helps get the toxins out.
  • promotes healthy bones.
  • helps promote healthy sleep
  • inhibits infection

I could go into GREAT detail on each of these, but I’d just have to quote directly from the articles below ’cause they are so well written and fun.  Instead, just click on those links at the end.  They’re awesome.

Bones are good for your bones.  And more.

OOOOOPS!  I was going to give you some recipes.  WHAT???  How did that happen?

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Last night’s homegrown homemade pumpkin soup made with last week’s chicken bone broth! Welcome Fall. Welcome Soup Season!

Really, this article has been long winded enough. How about I write another blog soon as an addendum and include my very favorite Chicken Soup recipe?  THE one and only?  My Mother’s (I love you and miss you MOM).  For now I will leave you of a picture of the soup that I was making today while I wrote this blog… No it’s not Chicken Soup, rather homemade homegrown pumpkin.  But guess what is one of only eight ingredients?  YES!!!  You guessed it! ….Chicken Bone Broth!

Until next month…keep drooling! xo Coby

Coby Dahlstrom (aka #mrsdrdahl)

IMG_4494

for

Dr. Eric P. Dahlstrom, D.C., L.Ac.
Santa Monica Healing Arts
Providing Chiropractic Care and Acupuncture in Santa Monica since 1999 (http://santamonicahealingarts.com). Check out our 5-star Review on Yelp (http://www.yelp.com/biz/santa-monica-healing-arts-santa-monica) or find us on facebook (https://www.facebook.com/pages/Santa-Monica-Healing-Arts)
~ follow us on
twitter: @SMHealingArts
facebook: “Santa Monica Healing Arts”
instagram: @mrsdrdahl
yelp: Santa Monica Healing Arts

Sources:
a. http://whole9life.com/2013/12/whole9-bone-broth-faq/

1. http://www.westonaprice.org/health-topics/broth-is-beautiful/

2. http://doctorauer.com/benefits-of-bone-broth/

3. http://alcantaraacupuncture.com/traditional-chicken-bone-broth-a-recipe-to-build-qi-and-blood-for-immune-building-fertility-and-postpartum/

4. http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2013/12/16/bone-broth-benefits.aspx

5. http://undergroundwellness.com/top-5-reasons-why-bone-broth-is-the-bomb/

 

 

Happy St. Paddy’s Day! Choose your GREEN wisely.

Erin Go Bragh! vintagestpat14

Yes, have a fun and be festive this St. Patrick’s Day!  But please, go easy on the GREEN food coloring!  Do you know how bad it is for you? I mean, REALLY BAD? (As I wrote in our February Blog:)

images-3

“suffice to say that a few of the long term effects can be chromosomal damage, brain damage, bladder tumors, thyroid tumors, hyperactivity, neurochemical/behavioral effects, agression, asthma, allergies, insomnia, lymphoma, eczema, hives, and oh my! the list goes ON and ON. Most of our widely used food colors are banned in Europe, Sweden, and Norway, and many were even attempted bans by our own FDA. Many more are indeed banned here depending on how they are administered. It’s poison. Not for eating. Not food.”

For more info about that horrid stuff go here: http://www.care2.com/greenliving/10-scary-reasons-to-avoid-artificial-food-coloring.html

But not to worry…you can still be your leprechaun-like self during this impish Irish holiday.  There are so many really really GOOD things that are green.  If you’re smart and festive, you will realize this is a GREAT opportunity to try some super foods that can be super yummy!  Of course, the first that comes to mind especially on THIS day as it is very IRISH also, is Cabbage.

Hey, you might even want to try Dr. Eric’s favorite way to cook cabbage.  Slice it really fine, then sauté in a frying pan over medium heat with butter, then season with fresh ground pepper, white pepper, sea salt, and, wait for it…PISTACHIO meal! (also green!) & DELICIOUS!images-3

For fun, I found a great site that lists only some of the super reasons to eat CABBAGE…I’m quoting directly here:

“Cabbage is powerful. Ancient healers declared it contained moon power because it grew in the moonlight. Modern nutritional science understands its power comes from its high sulfur and vitamin C content. Either way – it’s worth adding this Powerfood to your weekly diet.

9 Healthy Benefits of Cabbage:

1. Ideal for weight loss!
It has only 33 calories in a cup of cooked cabbage, is low in fat and high in fiber. It is definitely a smart carb.

2. It is a brain food!
It is full of vitamin K and anthocyanins that help with mental function and concentration. These nutrients also prevent nerve damage, improving your defense against Alzheimer’s disease, and dementia. Red cabbage has the highest amount of these power nutrients.cut cabbage

3. High in sulfur, the beautifying mineral.
Cabbage helps dry up oily and acne skin. Internally sulfur is essential for keratin, a protein substance necessary for healthy hair, nails, and skin. Check out this Homemade Cabbage Face Mask

4. Helps detoxify the body
.
The high content of vitamin C and sulphur in cabbage removes toxins (free radicals and uric acid); which are the main causes of arthritis, skin diseases, rheumatism and gout.

5. Has well-known cancer preventative 
compounds lupeol, sinigrin and sulforaphane.
They stimulate enzyme activity and inhibit the growth of cancer tumors. A Study on women showed a reduction in breast cancer when cruciferous vegetables like cabbage were added to their diet.

6. Helps keep blood pressure from getting high. 

The high potassium content helps by opening up blood vessels, easing the flow of blood.

7. Cabbage for headaches:

A warm compress made with cabbage leaves can help relieve the pain of a headache. Crush cabbage leaves, place in a cloth, and apply on the forehead. Also, drink raw cabbage juice 1-2 oz. (25-50ml) daily for chronic headaches.

8. Hangovers from heavy drinking were reduced by using cabbage, since Roman times.DownloadedFile

9.  Anti-inflammatory and Blood Sugar Regulator. 
The natural red pigments of red cabbage (betalains) is said to lower blood sugar levels and boost insulin production. Of course it has no white sugars and very few simple sugars. Betalains have powerful anti-inflammatory properties just like beets.”

Read more: http://www.care2.com/greenliving/9-suprising-health-benefits-of-cabbage.html#ixzz2wGGISOUR

(source: http://www.care2.com/greenliving/9-suprising-health-benefits-of-cabbage.html)

Okay so that was a lot of info but are you convinced? Cabbage is AWESOME. and GREEN. and YUMMY. and NOT POISON!!!DownloadedFile-1

So, give it a try.  Or, try one of the MANY MANY MANY other wonderful GREEN foods out there  –

instead of dying your beer, or your cupcakes, or your shake, or the river?!!

Thanks for listening…and

Go mbeannaí Dia duit (pronounced – Go Mawny Gia Hoitch).

Or in other words: May God bless you.  st-pattys-1

xo, Coby (#mrsdrdahl)

for

Dr. Eric P. Dahlstrom, D.C., L.Ac.
Santa Monica Healing Arts
Providing Chiropractic Care and Acupuncture in Santa Monica since 1999 (http://santamonicahealingarts.com). Check out our 5-star Review on Yelp (http://www.yelp.com/biz/santa-monica-healing-arts-santa-monica) or find us on facebook (https://www.facebook.com/pages/Santa-Monica-Healing-Arts)
~follow us on
twitter: @SMHealingArts
facebook: “Santa Monica Healing Arts”
instagram: @mrsdrdahl
yelp: Santa Monica Healing Arts
Vintage-St-Patricks-Day-Card

 

Happy Healthy(?) Valentine’s Day <3

images-5As Valentine’s Day approaches, there are so many many many posts and articles and stuff about Chocolate and Roses and Candy and Sweets and Whipped Cream and Cake.  Why does LOVE have to be synonymous with gluttony and indulgence? How about showing some love for yourself and your loved ones by making something really truly SWEET?  Try a delicious natural alternative for dessert tomorrow.images

Red Velvet (mmmmmmmm) is one of only two kinds of cake that I really do like and actually eat.  It is one of my absolute favorites to splurge on especially when it has cream cheese frosting on top! (Just ask my dear friend Courtenay Taylor about that bridal shower incident that involved too many mimosas, a red velvet cupcake, and the pavement! eek those were the days).  But really, it’s delicious and BAD FOR YOU.  Did you know that it is  just a super rich and moist chocolate cake but with ONE WHOLE (1 oz) BOTTLE of red food coloring??? At least that is how much Paula Dean’s recipe calls for (http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/paula-deen/red-velvet-cake-recipe.html).  I’ve used this recipe myself, back in the day, BEFORE I knew I had so many food sensitivities.  It’s a great recipe, but now I’m afraid my guts won’t abide it (sad face).  I’ve realized that so many things can cause disease in the long run if you’re not careful, so I avoid it now, like the plague (love ‘ya Paula! you’ve been through a lot lately so, I ain’t hatin).images-2

Just for fun, let’s talk about how bad food coloring can be for you.  Ouch. Well, suffice to say that a few of the long term effects can be chromosomal damage, brain damage, bladder tumors, thyroid tumors, hyperactivity, neurochemical/behavioral effects, agression, asthma, allergies, insomnia, lymphoma, eczema, hives, and oh my! the list goes ON and ON.  Most of our widely used food colors are banned in Europe, Sweden, and Norway, and many were even attempted bans by our own FDA.  Many more are indeed banned here depending on how they are administered.  It’s poison.  Not for eating.  Not food.  (For more info about that horrid stuff go here http://www.care2.com/greenliving/10-scary-reasons-to-avoid-artificial-food-coloring.html)images-3

So the other day I was really excited when I saw online a recipe for food coloring-free Red Velvet Cake! Yay!  This seems like a really yummy recipe using guess what instead? BEETS!  I love beets.  Especially when they are in season and available locally!  Again, Yay!  Here is the recipe that I found for “All Natural” Red Velvet Cake: www.littlehouseliving.com/recipe-for-red-velvet-cake.html

Oh, oh, oh…! I won’t go on a tirade (although I really can’t help myself), but beets are so good for you!  And, hello! NOT IRONIC, they are heart shaped and good for your…guess what? yesssss!  HEART!  lol.  That’s just the beginning.  They fight cancer and are basically a SOOOPER FOOD! (For more info regarding beets and your health go here: http://voices.yahoo.com/15-health-benefits-beets-fight-cancer-more-805501.html).images-6

I have never tried this recipe, mind you, but I sure plan on trying it soon!  I love the way the chef/author talks about all the harm that the food coloring chemicals can cause!  I also love the “science talk” about how when using wonderful beets for color, there are required things like ACV and citrus etc to calm their acidity.  Real health, kitchen, homemaker stuff.  My fave!  Although I have one caveat…when I try it, and I will, I will make this cake gluten free.  Ack! what? No, it’s not hard.  In pretty much ANY recipe you can substitute the regular flour 1 for 1 with Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Flour! Then add 1/4 of xanthan gum as a binding agent.  It is that easy.

Bobs-Red-Mill-Gluten-Free-All-Purpose-Baking-Flour-039978014528So, I challenge you!…  Try to make it will you?  And then let me know how it turns out?  Maybe not for Valentine’s Day, as that is tomorrow!  But soon.  Red Velvet Cake is always good!  Birthdays, baby showers, bridal showers (right Courtenay?), or 4th of July!  There’s a good chance that I will make it first though…we’ll see!

But whatever you bake tomorrow, try to LOVE YOURSELF.  Be wise and eat well.  You’ll be glad you did.images-4

xo, Coby (#mrsdrdahl)

for

Dr. Eric P. Dahlstrom, D.C., L.Ac.
Santa Monica Healing Arts
Providing Chiropractic Care and Acupuncture in Santa Monica since 1999 (http://santamonicahealingarts.com). Check out our 5-star Review on Yelp (http://www.yelp.com/biz/santa-monica-healing-arts-santa-monica) or find us on facebook (https://www.facebook.com/pages/Santa-Monica-Healing-Arts)
~follow us on
twitter: @SMHealingArts
facebook: “Santa Monica Healing Arts”
instagram: @mrsdrdahl
yelp: Santa Monica Healing Arts
PS: for fun,  here’s a candid shot from that fateful cupcake episode! The story you ask?  Well, my cupcake fell – rather I dropped it!  Not eating it was NOT an option.  So, I picked it up off the ground and ate it anyway.  No big whoop right?  “God made dirt and dirt don’t hurt!”  I was NOT missing out on that delicious red velvet with cream cheese frosting dammit!  I still get grief for that – but it sure makes a good story at a party!  Here we are, just minutes prior to the red velvet cupcakes, Me, Courtenay Taylor, and Warner Takaki (neither of whom eat gluten or dairy much anymore either :).  Love you gals.  Cheers!<3261_21123708421_1503_n

 

 

Season’s Seasoning: Sweet & Savory Chard Salad

Hi Dear Followers!

Dr. Eric and I, #mrsdrdahl, have been so busy with the SEASON (it all starts in the Fall with Football/Cheer/Halloween for us and rolls all the way through till late January…) that we haven’t gotten to you all lately.  Sorry!  But I’ll change that RIGHT NOW.

I think you all should know about this great side dish I made up the other night!  So weirdly yummy.  This was one of those great happy accidents where I just cooked what we had from the garden while thinking outside the box. Primarily, I wanted to be sure to use the STEMS of the chard as they contain so many of the important nutrients and vitamins.  I managed to make this delicious, simple, AND extremely healthy side dish that received rave reviews from my family.

May I present to you:

Rainbow Chard Salad with Caramelized Gala Apple & Chard Spine Compote

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Rainbow Chard Salad with Caramelized Gala Apple & Chard Spine Compote served alongside Grass-fed Beef Stroganoff over Rice Penne Pasta topped with Greek Yogurt and Parmesean

Ingredients:

1 Bunch Organic Rainbow Chard

1 Tbs Garlic, minced

1 Tbs Butter (Organic/Non rBGH please)

a pinch of Himalayan Sea Salt

1 Organic Gala Apple, chopped

1/2 Organic Yellow Onion, chopped

1 Tbs Raw Honey

1 tsp Brown Sugar (Organic Cane Sugar please)

Juice of 1 Lime

Lucero Persian Lime Olive Oil*

Lucero Pear Balsamic Vinegar*

*If you do not have these unique flavors from Lucero Olive Oil, please substitute with:

1 Tbs Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 Tbs White Balsamic Vinegar

Juice of 1 lime

a pinch of Sugar (Organic Cane please)

a pinch of Sea Salt

Directions:

1) First wash and de-vein the chard leaves (save the stems), and chop into good bite-sized chunks.  Toss them in a bowl with the olive oil and vinegar and refrigerate. Then chop the stems/spines into nice bite size chunks as well.

2) Add  1 Tbs butter, onion, chard stems, salt, and garlic to pan on medium heat.  Saute until soft and clear.  Then add the chopped apple.  Again saute until soft and clear.  Next, add the honey, brown sugar, and lime juice.  Saute a bit longer on higher heat until well-coated and caramelized but not so long as to evaporate all the lime and/or burn the sugar/honey.

3) Serve the dressed chard leaves cold with the caramelized stem/apple compote piled on top!

Coby Dahlstrom (#mrsdrdahl)

for

Dr. Eric P. Dahlstrom, D.C., L.Ac.
Santa Monica Healing Arts
Providing Chiropractic Care and Acupuncture in Santa Monica since 1999 (http://santamonicahealingarts.com). Check out our 5-star Review on Yelp (http://www.yelp.com/biz/santa-monica-healing-arts-santa-monica) or find us on facebook (https://www.facebook.com/pages/Santa-Monica-Healing-Arts)
~follow us on
twitter: @SMHealingArts
facebook: “Santa Monica Healing Arts”
instagram: @mrsdrdahl
yelp: Santa Monica Healing Arts

*I apologize for the continued use of the specific unique flavorings from Lucero Olive Oil, however, I simply can’t live without them!  They add so much to any recipe! You can find them here: www.lucerooliveoil.com

Health Benefits of Swiss Chard:

– great source of phytonutrients

– excellent detox support

– outstanding antioxidant

– anti-inflammatory

– blood sugar regulating

– aids in digestion

– beneficial for pancreas

– enhances liver protection

– lowers risk of obesity

– lowers risk of diabetes

– lowers risk of high blood pressure

– lowers risk of arthritis

– high in magnesium and calcium

– high in vitamin K

– good for bone health

for more information regarding the health benefits of Swiss Chard please visit:

http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=16