This soup is great for cleansing and detoxifying your body, especially before or after the indulgent holiday season. It’s packed with immunity-boosting ingredients like broccoli, ginger, mushrooms, kale, nori, and garlic.
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoons coconut oil or olive oil
- 1 sweet onion, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 3 cups sliced cremini or white button mushrooms (about 8 ounces)
- 1 cup chopped carrots
- 2 cups chopped broccoli florets
- Fine-grain sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 1⁄2 to 3 teaspoons grated peeled fresh ginger
- 1⁄2 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1⁄8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 5 cups vegetable broth
- 2 large nori seaweed sheets, cut into 1-inch strips (optional)
- 2 cups torn kale leaves
- Fresh lemon juice, for serving (optional)
In a large saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and sauté for about 5 minutes, until the onion is soft and translucent.
Add the mushrooms, carrots, and broccoli and stir to combine. Season generously with salt and pepper and sauté for 5 minutes more.
Stir in the ginger, turmeric, cumin, and cinnamon and sauté for 1 to 2 minutes, until fragrant.
Add the broth and stir to combine. Bring the mixture to a boil and then reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until the vegetables are tender, 10 to 20 minutes.
Just before serving, stir in the nori (if using) and kale and cook until wilted. Season with salt and pepper and a squeeze of fresh lemon juice, if desired.
March is Liver and Kidney Health Awareness Month!
Your liver and kidneys are vital organs. They process and filter everything that you put into your body. If your liver and kidneys are healthy, then you will be too. Periodically, these organs need some extra support and a bit of a rest.
Let’s look at the facts and history regarding detoxing and cleansing.
Spring is the time to renew, refresh and do some spring cleaning. In holistic and natural health, spring is thought to be a good time to detoxify or cleanse the body. The concept is not new. Historically throughout the ages, there is reference to fasting and cleansing. Many cultures and religions observe periods of dietary change and elimination. These days there are juice cleanses, herbal detox programs, cleansing diets, and much more.
The choices are endless and the information is confusing to many people and more information does not make the decision easier!
- Is detoxing necessary for everyone?
- Is detoxing safe for everyone?
- Is a cleansing diet better than fasting?
- Can detoxing or cleansing be harmful?
- Are there any contraindications for individuals with health conditions or those taking medications?
Seek the advice of a professional who can assess your individual needs and help you with a plan. I don’t try to assess and repair my automobile, because I am clueless in that area – I go to a great mechanic who is my auto expert. A nutritionist is a body systems expert. Consider booking an appointment so that we can meet and discuss your journey to “Optimal Wellness”.
Have we talked enough about gluten and gluten-free? Maybe not!
Not all gluten free foods are “health giving”
Just a few thoughts to share. Gluten free is trendy to some; and a necessary lifestyle to others.
Anyone can benefit from a break from gluten.
For certain people, gluten free is not an option. Those with Celiac Disease or serious Gluten Intolerance must live gluten free or their well-being is severely compromised.
The word “gluten” from latin translates as glue. This is the key point. Gluten holds baked goods together and thickens soups and sauces. When gluten is removed, other methods of ways of “gluing” are required. This could mean adding more sugar or gluten free white pasty flours that provide no nutritional value.
With a little work and knowledge, gluten free baking and cooking can be delicious, nutrient rich and have a perfect texture. Some of the “gluten free” products on the grocer’s shelves are not good for you. Fiber is often lacking, and sugar and sodium content is high. If you are interested in healthy, nutrient dense gluten free baking, cooking, and store bought choices; I can help.
Please read labels carefully and make wise choices. For breads and crackers, I like to see per serving: 3 grams of fiber and 0 grams sugar.
Read more on how to understand our nutritional labels here: http://www.cbc.ca/news/health/nutrition-labels-to-be-easier-to-read-health-canada-proposes-1.2706310
Steel cut oats are my first choice for cooked oats cereal.
Steel cut oats are whole grain groats (the inner part of the oat kernel), which have been cut into a few smaller pieces. Unlike rolled oats or instant oats, they haven’t been partially or fully precooked, meaning they retain more of their natural taste, texture and nutrients. As far as calories, carbs, fiber they are similar to old fashioned rolled oats, however steel cut oats “stick to the ribs” a little better..
Steel cut oats have 7 grams of protein per dry ¼ cup (44 grams) serving, so the oats alone are a good start for a high-protein breakfast.
Oats, oat bran, and oatmeal contain a specific type of fiber known as beta-glucan. Since 1963, study after study has proven the beneficial effects of this special fiber on cholesterol levels. Oat bran has not been removed in steel cut oats.
Oats are naturally free from gluten, but might contain traces of gluten, depending on the processing from farm to package.
If you need gluten free, look for it on the label.
Steel cuts oats are a great source of nutrition and are most certainly a super food.
Links to help you on the path the optimal health
February may be the shortest month of the year, but it is by far (in both research and perspective!) the worst month of the entire year. February typically brings the worst weather, colder temperatures, and overall gloominess to both the sky and our moods. For some people, such low mood peaks in February, preceded by declining mood since the Fall.
Seasonal Affective Disorder is a form of Clinical Depression that occurs only at certain times of the year, the most typical time being winter. This debilitating mood disorder affects 2 to 3% of Canadians, while another 15% will experience a milder form of SAD in their lifetime (CMHA).
Symptoms of SAD
- Depressed mood *
- Sleep disruption; too much, too little
- Withdrawing from social contacts
- Lack of concentration, motivation
- Weight gain
- Intense cravings for carbohydrates
*The depressed mood must occur over at least two consecutive winters, alternating with non-depressed periods in the spring and summer.
**It is important to not diagnose yourself without talking to your doctor first because there may be other causes for these symptoms.**
How Do I Deal With SAD?
- Light Therapy: One of the most effective treatments for SAD is using light to help relieve depressive symptoms and aid in normalizing your body’s rhythm and internal clock. Research has found that light therapy has an anti-depressent affect in 70% of people suffering from SAD after 2 weeks of starting treatment (MDAO).
- Psychotherapy: Working through your thoughts and feelings during this time is extremely important. With increased irritability, anxiety and depressive symptoms like hopelessness and guilt, a professional therapist can give you coping strategies and provide support during the most difficult of times.
- Self-Help: Even with decreased energy and a lack of motivation, getting out and being active is vital. Participating in yoga, mindfulness meditation, cardio exercises, massages, and social activities all lead to improved wellness.
Better Health Clinic Support for SAD
At Better Health Clinic we strive to support each individual in the most holistic way possible, with many of our services effective for SAD: naturopathic medicine, psychotherapy, nutritional support, massage therapy, mindfulness meditation, and our very own infrared sauna.