*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.

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    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
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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

 

 

 

 

HOME GROWN an excerpt from “Animal, Vegetable, Miracle” by Kingsolver/Hopp

Animal, Vegetable, Miracle – A Year of Food Life51PfhTR2k-L

THIS BOOK is a must read.

what is it about? Food as Medicine.

Taken from the dust jacket back cover: “Author Barbara Kingsolver and her family abandoned the industrial food pipeline to live a rural life- vowing that, for one year, they’d only buy food raised in their own neighborhood, grow it themselves, or learn to live without it.  Part memoire, part journalistic investigation, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle is an enthralling narrative that will open our eyes in a hundred new ways to an old truth: You are what you eat.”

Just for fun. here’s one excerpt, written by Steven L. Hopp, the author’s husband who in addition to being an author of essays, is also a teacher of environmentl studies at Emory and Henry College. It addresses a concern MANY of our Patients and online followers have regarding growing your own food…

“HOME GROWN

Oh sure, Barbara Kingsolver has forty acres and Mule (a donkey, actually). But how can someone like me participate in the spirit of growing things, when my apartment overlooks the freeway and other people’s windows?

How big is that spare bedroom? Just kidding. But even for people who live in urban areas (more than half our population), directly contributing to local food economies isn’t out of the question. Container gardening on porches, balconies, back steps, or even a sunny window can yield a surprising amount of sprouts, herbs, and even produce. Just a few tomato plants in big flowerpots can be surprisingly productive.

If you have any yard at all, part of it can become a garden. You can spade up the sunnniest part of it for seasonal vegetables, or go for the more understated option of using perennial edibles in your landscaping. Fruit, nut, citrus, or berry plants come in many attractive forms, with appropriate choices for every region of the country.

If you’re not a landowner, you can still find in most urban areas some opportunity to garden. Many community-supported agriculture (CSA) operations allow or even require subscribers to participate on their farms; they might even offer a work-for-food arrangement. Most urban areas also host community gardens, using various organizational protocols – a widespread practice in European cities that has taken root here. Some rent garden spaces to the first comers; others provide free space for neighborhood residents. Some are organized and run by volunteers for some specific goal, such as supplying food to a local school, while others accomodate special needs of disabled participants or at-risk youth. Information and locations can be found at the American Community Garden Association site: www.communitygarden.org.”

If you are interested in reading this fantastic book (and we suggest you do), you can find it here:

https://www.amazon.com/Animal-Vegetable-Miracle-Year-Food/dp/0060852569/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1471453919&sr=8-1&keywords=animal+vegetable+miracle

~ Coby Dahlstrom

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

 

Providing Integrated Alternative Medicine 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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yelp: Santa Monica Healing Arts