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Archive for the ‘glycemic index’ Category

“Everyone Knows Someone Who Needs This Information!” (TM)

I am trying to catch-up, as lots of things have been happening in my life and I want you well-equipped with information and healthy foods as we transition seasons and head for Holiday Times.

As Food is Your Medicine, it’s important to get the Best! The Environmental Working Group lists the Best and Worst Farmed foods. Here they are for 2011, with my comments.

The new “Dirty Dozen”: Avoid these if conventionally-farmed, at all costs, and for the nutritious foods which you don’t want to miss, then use only the ORGANIC farmed versions.

1. Apples – these fruits are highly nutritious, but they should only be used as a whole, raw, organic fruit. Making them into juice concentrates too much of the large fructose content, and cooking changes the fruit completely (apart from the fact, then when cooked, most people remove the skins). It is only just beneath the skin that the most-healthy nutrient in apples hides. It’s the mineral chromium, which is needed for blood sugar control. If one was eating a totally-natural hunter-gatherer diet, then probably “one apple a day would keep the medicine-wo/man away”. Apple sauce is prolematical being cooked and in the huge portion (meaning equivalence of several apples) which people are likely to give themselves or their children (even worse). Make sure to wait for this year’s Fall Harvest of apples. Those stored in the supermarkets’ coolers are long-since useless.

2. Celery: It’s a sneaky addition to the Bad List. I have a huge celery plant in my back-yard and I see NO reason for it to be pesticided like conventional commercial agriculture does. Celery is the second-ranked dirty food. It’s critical to use organic celery (and only CRISP stalks), as celery helps our bodies relax from tensions and stresses (it’s called a nervine). If the celery goes limp, do NOT use it. Celery should be used raw in salads and the “strings” provide good fiber to slow down other carbs.

3. Strawberries Every kid loves strawberries, so it’s shameful that conventional ones are the 3rd. most dangerous fruit thanks to farming in America. Your country may be different, so check it out!  This berry has lots of anti-oxidants and vitamins, so do buy it, just buy Organic! Figure that unless you buy Organic products, that strawberry ice-cream and strawberry jam will have filthy conventional berries in them. Stupid manufacturers.

4. Peaches: These fruits belong to the same botanical family as apples and plums. They are nutritious but also have a lot of fructose, so should be used sparingly. Fructose is not good for diabetics and everyone is affected by fructose turning-off your satiety signals and piling on belly-fat. Generally, vegetables are MUCH healthier than fruits and fruits should be used in extreme moderation.

5. Spinach: It’s not just the event a few years ago where birds or roaming animals pooping on spinach was not washed-off well enough, causing an E. coli outbreak. That can happen to any raw food. It is your responsibilty as the consumer to make sure that “Triple-washed” spinach (or any thing else) is washed again in your own kitchen. Some leafy greens are harder than others to “wash” commercially. You are the final inspector. Spinach is nutritious enough to bother with this, but as it also has a hefty-dose of oxalic acid, it is not a main-line green. Just add a few extra leaves to your salad made from other greens (like romaine, cilantro, parsley and kale — all of them Organic).

6. Nectarines: Nectarines are a hybrid – a cross between peaches and plums, They have the best-of-both. But, unfortunately, in America, they are pesticided and chemically-fertilized too much. So, buy Organic nectarines, only in season, and get the benefits of a lower fructose fruit (as plums are lower in fructose) with a hint of the higher Peach.

7. Grapes:Don’t get dragged-in to the out-of-season grapes! Most are being farmed in countries which do not have strong laws regarding pesticides! Apart from that, it’s always wiser to eat-in-season. Your body needs different foods in different seasons and expects them to have their nutrients, in the right proportion and form, to carry you through. This is especially true of winter foods, which are denser, with their own array of nutrients. Whereas warm-season foods have much higher water-content to help slake your thirst (and a nutrient profile rich in electrolytes to help compensate for mineral loss when sweating). Just make sure you eat in season. Research the proper season when foods will normally be harvested in your country and region. Organic grapes (especially red ones) are a highly-nutritious food which should be used once every few days, in season, in moderate quantities, as there’s lots of fructose in them, too.

8. Sweet bell peppers: Peppers (hot or sweet), potatoes, tomatoes, tomatillos and cape gooseberry are all part of the nightshade botanical family.  Sweet potatoes are from a different family. Nightshades can cause inflammation and a biochemical cascade resulting in arthritis for some people. They are foods to get off of for up to 6 months and see if you are doing better. If you still want to re-introduce them, do it one by one, at least a week in between each and pay attention to your body’s signals. Make sure any of these foods is always Organic! Peppers have lots of Vitamin C and the red ones have Vitamin A, too. But, you must make sure that any of these foods are not secretly undermining your precious Health.

9. Potatoes: Same as for Peppers, above, along with the fact that potatoes must always be Organic, scrubbed, unpeeled, in small portions (like 1 small to medium potato) and eaten always with a healthy fat in the meal (avocado, organic coconut oil, organic hemp oil, organic olive oil, organic butter, organic ghee).  On their own, potatoes have a very high glycemic index and trigger too much insulin; healthy fats slow them down. Conventional potatoes are also doused in fungicides after harvest, and I am not sure that even peeling them helps you avoid the chemical. And, the most important nutrition is just under the skin, so you would be just getting a big carb load without much nutrition to be peeling them.

10. Blueberries: They are a divine gift — easy to grow, delicious, and most importantly they are highly nutritious, but NOT if conventionally farmed! Only get Organic berries or grow your own, Organically. The plants require very little attention. Eat them raw. You want to get every iota of goodness and cooking always destroys nutrients. Use them in fruit salad, smoothies etc. They are a medium-range fructose fruit.

11. Lettuce:  I suspect that this Warning applies to all commercially-grown conventional lettuce. However, when you buy Organic lettuce, you not only have a safer product, but you will have access to a much-wider choice of green leafies — lettuces and all sorts of other plants — like those in “Spring Mix” etc.  Organic Romaine lettuce is MUCH more nutritionally-sound than any iceberg lettuce (which is a total waste of your hard-earned dollar, as iceberg has almost NO nutrients, at all). Enjoy trying oak-leaf lettuce, frisee, endives, orach, radicchio, and all the other wonderful “greens”.  but only in Organic or non-sprayed form. Leafies are the best source of B vitamins, used to allay stress and also they contain wonderful alkaline minerals you need for bio-electricty and to quell inflammatory chemistry.

12. Kale/collard greens: Kale is SO effective in bringing up the nutrients in the soil that, when it is used in fields which have had toxic and too many pesticides thrown on them, kale is used to “detoxify” the fields (but then those companies still sell the very-toxic, conventional kale!). So, you can only use Organic Kale, for sure! Kale is a nutritonal powerhouse, and if I could only choose one vegetable, this would be it! Those on Coumadin / Warfarin therapy can use it, but it just has to be at a consistent serving and use, so it can be accounted for.

The EWG also publishes a list of the 15 fruits and vegetables that are fine to eat when they are conventionally-grown. I’ll share that with you next time.

Best to all — Em

Please also read the 4 years of still current articles in my archive. See the tab on the upper navigation bar.

You can also sign-up for email alerts for when I post to this blog. I try for once a week. The form is on the upper right of the side-bar. Thanks.

(c)2011 Em at https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.com

Please do not use my articles on junk blogs. I will prosecute you. The only use of my copyrighted article is 2 small paragraphs (with my website shown) without further permission, from me, in writing. Contact me at the About Me page on the upper navigation bar if you want to share more than 2 paragraphs. Thanks.

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“Everyone Knows Someone Who Needs This Information!” (TM)

Continuing our series with recipes using diabetes-friendly herbs which diabetics should be paying attention to! Diabetes does not mean unimaginative food, at all. Look at these great recipes to help prevent diabetes and to improve it, if you are dealing with the condition.

In the Reference section, please find the previous parts of this series.

Now I continue with more recipes using the herbs best for pre-diabetes, Type 1 diabetics and Type 2 diabetics: Turmeric, Garlic, Mint, Parsley, Rosemary, Chili, Cinnamon, Ginger, Basil and Lavender!

(Dill seed is also good, as are organic maple syrup in moderation, organic coconut products and organic dark chocolate, in moderation.) Now, back to Lavender, the least known of the group of herbs.

Lavender is part of the  same botanical family as many of our most popular herbs – the Mint family — a cousin of mints, sage, rosemary and thyme. So, it is not surprising that lavender is edible and that its use in food preparation is also returning, as a refreshing “new” flavor, even though it’s been used in food for centuries (especially in European Medieval cookery)!

Lavender’s flowers and leaves can be used fresh, and both buds and stems can be used dried for cooking purposes. The stalks are much more concentrated flavor and should be used in soups and sauces (don’t overcook, as they can become bitter), whereas the fresh flowers give an ambrosial and delicate palate delight. The potency of even the lavender flowers increases with drying.

Lavender is best used alongside fennel, oregano, rosemary, thyme, sage, and savory.

And, as I noted last time, English Lavender (l. angustifolia and munstead) has the sweetest fragrance of all, and is the one preferred in cooking as it has a sweet, floral flavor, with lemon and citrus notes.

Cooking with Lavender:
In cooking, use only 1/3 the quantity of dried flowers if you do not have fresh, if the recipe calls for fresh blooms.

Harvesting Lavender:
Harvest flowers only from organic, unsprayed plants.  Select only those stems that look most perfectly ready, with the fullest color. The fresher the flower, the more flavorful its taste, so pick your flowers as close as possible to food preparation time and one’s picked in the morning will be better than those picked on a hot afternoon — so gather in the moring and place in water, in a cool place, until using later that day for cooking.

All blooms should be thoroughly rinsed as little critters may hide. Immerse the stems in water. Then lay the flowers gently on paper or cloth towels, dab dry, or gently spin dry in a salad spinner; then place vertically in shallow water until using. You can also, layer the blooms carefully between moist paper towels in the refrigerator until meal time.

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LAVENDER OATMEAL

This is a tasty way to add oatmeal and an extra dimension to your diet, especially if you eat oatmeal most days, as you physician likely recommends.

2 servings

2 C      boiling filtered water
1/2 t  crushed lavender buds
1/8 t  Celtic or other sea salt
1 C    organic  oatmeal

Cook as directed on package and remove from heat.

Stir in:
1 t organic cinnamon
equivalent amount of Stevia to 1T of sugar or to taste

Other variations-
Cut up half an organic banana or organic apple (with its skin — which contains chromium — a vital mineral for diabetics).
Add organic walnuts (excellent for Omega 3 Essential Fatty Acids) or organic raisins once it’s cooked.

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HERBED CHEVRE WITH CROSTINI

8 oz. mild chevre (goat cheese), crumbled
2 T  Herbs de Provence  (which already contains lavender)
8 cloves garlic, peeled and thickly sliced
1 t pepper flakes
1 T cracked peppercorns
3/4-1 C extra virgin olive oil

Taste the mix by making about 1 Tablespoon sample. Add more lavender if needed (and make sure your Herbes de Provence actually contained it!).

Then, prepare the rest as follows, in a glass serving dish, to accent the colors and the layering effect.

Begin layering one third of the crumbled chevre, then one third each: Herbs de Provence, garlic slices, pepper flakes and cracked peppercorns.

Continue to create the three layers until all ingredients are utilized.

Pour a layer of oil ton top, to dip through or get onto the spreader.

It is best prepared ahead of time so all the flavors can blend. Refrigerate, and then bring it to room temp one hour before serving.

For Crostini: Slice crispy crusted French bread thinly, brush with olive oil. toast in 350F degree oven until light brown and crisp. Let your guests apply the chevre mix or do it for them ahead of time.

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SCRUMPTIOUS SINGLE SALAD

makes 1 serving

1 organic nectarine – pitted and sliced
a large handful of organic baby lettuce leaves
a few fresh basil leaves – slice rolled-up into spaghetti chiffonade
thinly sliced red onion, to taste
2 – 4 thin slices of a hard goat cheese (approx. 2 oz. of cheese)

Dressing:
2 t  organic apple-cider vinegar
1 t organic grapeseed oil or extra-virgin olive oil
a pinch of minced Culinary Lavender Flowers
a pinch of Succanat, natural sugar
chopped mint leaf to taste

Make the dressing and let it sit out at room temperature while you prep the greens, plate them and then drizzle on at the last moment.

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HERBAL RUB

Use for sustainable-fishery seafood and fish OR for organic poultry. It can also be applied to grass-fed meats – bison and lamb being best.

1 t crushed Certified Organic Jardin du Soleil Culinary Lavender
3 t chopped fresh rosemary leaves
4 t chopped fresh thyme
4 t minced garlic
4 t minced, fresh onion
2 t Celtic or other sea salt
1/2 t crushed black pepper OR a little organic cayenne pepper
1/4 C white wine Worcestershire sauce OR Coconut Secret’s Aminos
1/4 C extra-virgin olive oil

1)  Combine all ingredients in a blender or food processor, and pulse well until blended.
2)  Cover, and refrigerate for at least 10 minutes before rubbing onto flesh or injecting it into the meat, as desired.
3) Marinate the protein at least an hour in the refrigerator, or even overnight, before cooking.
4) If desired and appropriate, consider serving with the potato recipe which follows.

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HERBES DE PROVENCE ROAST POTATOES

10-15 med organic red potatoes, whole (MUST be organic!), washed and dried
1/3 C extra virgin olive oil
2 T  Herbs de Provence (check label that it contains lavender) or add a pinch
1-2 T Celtic or other sea salt

1) Preheat your oven to 400F.
2) Mix all ingredients in a large bowl, and then toss to coat the potatoes.
3) Place all into a  9×9 oven-safe glass baking dish.
4) Bake 40-45 minutes, or to desired tenderness.

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MARCIA’S GLUTEN FREE CHOCOLATE FUDGE BROWNIES

6 T unsweetened organic cocoa
3 T organic coconut oil *
6 T unsalted organic butter *
2 organic, free-range eggs, room temperature (cold eggs harden the oil)
1 t organic pure vanilla extract
¼ C + 2 T Nutiva’s organic coconut nectar
¾ C  Coconut Secret’s  coconut crystals (a low glycemic sweetener)
1/8 t Celtic or other sea salt
½ C  sifted organic, fine-grind coconut flour (measure after sifting)

*You can use 9 T of Coconut Oil in place of 6 T butter for a dairy free version.

— Preheat your oven to 350F degrees. Prepare your 8×8 baking pan.

In a medium pan on very low heat, melt the butter and coconut oil together, stirring constantly. Remove from heat as soon as mixture is melted.

Add the organic cocoa and mix until thoroughly blended to a paste.

Add Coconut Crystals, Coconut Nectar and vanilla extract and mix thoroughly.

Add eggs and mix well until they are thoroughly blended into mixture.

Next,  add sea salt and coconut flour and blend until all dry ingredients are incorporated.

Pour this batter into well-greased 8×8 glass pan. Bake in the preheated 350F degree oven for 28-30 minutes or until top looks evenly baked and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out dry.

Cool and cut into 16 squares. Can be frozen. If not used within 2 days, please refrigerate well-wrapped.

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LAVENDER CHAI

3 organic black tea bags (orange pekoe or Assam)
1 stick of cinnamon          (make sure it’s not cassia)
around 8 allspice berries
2 t organic Cook’s vanilla extract
2 C filtered water
about 1/4 cup* organic honey
Stevia or Coconut Secret’s crystals = to 3/4C sugar*
1 t Jardin du Soleil Culinary Lavender**
1 t + fresh grated ginger
dash nutmeg

*total sweetener equals taste of about 1 cup of sugar, more or less to taste.
**Lavender can be finely ground in a spice grinder or in a throughly cleaned coffee grinder.

Drop the tea bags, cinnamon, allspice, vanilla, ginger and nutmeg into the 2 cups of boiling water.

Simmer until the mixture is a rich reddish brown. Take off the heat. Mix in the sweeteners; and strain out all large ingredients.

Pour this Chai concentrate into a  heat-safe glass or mug — making 1/3 full.

Fill the remainder of the glass with warm milk or warm water …  serve hot.

Or, for cold Chai, after the concentrate is cold, then add 2/3 cold milk, non-dairy milk, cold spring water — or a combo into your mug or glass.

Refrigerate the brewed Lavender Chai Tea Concentrate  for later use.

This stores for up to seven days and makes 3 – 5 servings, depending on the size of the mugs / glasses used.

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If changing a rosemary recipe to a lavender one, then use 3 times as much lavender as the rosemary.

If using fresh lavender buds in place of dried asked for in a recipe, use half-again the amount of fresh.

Enjoy making the recipes.

Best to all — Em

REFERENCE:
Diabetes – Herbs that Help — Lavender
Diabetes Recipes – Herb List
Diabetes Medicine Alert
Diabetic Concerns – marjoram and nutmeg
Diabetes – Low Thyroid Connection
Thyroid Connections to Diabetes
Herbal Help Diabetic GI Problems

Diabetics and Essential Fatty Acid Omega-3

Please also read the 4 years of still current articles in my archive. See the tab on the upper navigation bar. The extra page links are at the bottom of the first page.

You can also sign-up for email alerts for when I post to this blog. I try for once a week. The form is on the upper right of the side-bar. Thanks.

(c)2011 Em at https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.com

Please do not use my articles on junk blogs. I will prosecute you. The only use of my copyrighted article is 2 small paragraphs (with my website shown) without further permission, from me, in writing. Contact me at the About Me page on the upper navigation bar if you want to share more than 2 paragraphs. Thanks.

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“Everyone Knows Someone Who Needs That Information” (TM)

Trying new foods which are healthy is imperative for diabetics, as many people are stuck in a rut, continuing to eat foods and sustain habits which are not helping, and which may harm. The new foods are generally vegetarian, and in this case, they are essential. If you haven’t been eating them, you are putting yourself in jeopardy.  Some options are more expensive than others, but in the BIG food-picture, saving money on one part of your food budget (the most expensive is processed foods and more protein than you need), then enables you to buy healthier fresh or lightly-processed real foods.

We do not have to buy processed foods for the smart 2-snacks-a-day in a diabetic diet. In fact, snacks are a chance to try out other new items and recipes. When this season’s Biggest Loser Finale show this week revealed 59 year old Deni and 35 year old Olivia winning, as the at-home and grand-prize winners, respectively, there were lessons to learn there. We’ll discuss that over coming weeks, but small, healthy meals and snacks, paced through the day, is integral for beating both obesity and diabetes.

Famed holistic physician, Dr. Andrew Weil, MD says “As a physician, I recommend nutritious hemp seeds and oil to anyone interested in maintaining a healthy diet. Everyone will benefit when American farmers can grow this amazing crop once again.

What’s going on here?

Well, Hemp History Week occurred May 2-8, 2011 and you can learn more at: Grow American Hemp! – it’s Nature’s Wonder Food and the safest ecologically for food, clothes (excellent and no pesticides — cotton accounts for 25% of all pesticide use!), building materials, cosmetics, industrial products (Chrysler, Mercedes Benz, Lotus, GM and BMW already use it in cars)  and on and on.

Currently, one needs a permit to grow even industrial hemp (which cannot produce marijuana) and the American government has not been granting permits and has been waging war on those who want to grow this amazing, healthy, useful plant.

It’s even burned fields on the permit-holding, sovereign lands of several Native American tribes, for their own home-building use (they did the American government the  “courtesy” to get a permit, although they should not need it). The ATF agents burned 2 seasons of crops and left individuals and tribes without their crop after investing all their money.

No-one is getting permits in America, and meanwhile, we are importing hemp food and hemp products from Canada and other European and Asian countries which are more enlightened. So, we pay more and our farmers are locked out from one of the few lucrative crops which could help them save their family farms and provide a decent living-wage.

Hemp is one of the most nutritious foods on earth and if I had to choose 3 foods to have plenty of on a desert island, it would be one. Hemp seeds are a nearly-perfect food source. And, they are one of the few foods which have the needed human ratio of 1:3 essential fatty acids (EFAs) of Omega-3s to Omega-6s.

We must get these essential fatty acids everyday: either from cold water fish, molecularly-distilled fish oil capsules, organic hemp seed, organic chia seed or organic flax seed. Omega-3s are severely lacking in the modern diet, and this is possibly why neurological problems are increasing, as the brain is 70% these essential fats. Episodes of Parkinson’s, ADD, Autism, Alzheimers and more, along with IQ’s falling can all be attributed to lack of these EFAs. And, their lack also lets body-wide inflammation wreke havoc; this impacts diabetics directly.

So, like last week, when I wrote about chia seed recipes, I’ll add some interesting hemp seed ones this week.

I prefer NOT to cook hemp seeds, flax seeds or chia seeds. If you do, please do not use any heat higher than 325F. That’s critical. Flaxseeds must be ground to be accessible and then used immediately.

You will not be failing drug tests if you eat hemp! Only those who use drugs will register on those tests.
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HEMP PANCAKES

Makes: About 16 pancakes Prep Time: 15 min Cook Time: 15 min

1 C  shelled hemp seeds (hemp hearts)
3 T nut oil or organic butter (changed)

1 C organic whole wheat flour or organic substitute of choice
2 t no-aluminum baking powder (Rumford’s)

1 t baking soda
1 t Celtic sea salt

4 egg whites – divided, free-range, vegetarian fed —– save the egg yolks (or cook, whole, to medium, separately and serve on side).
1 C plain organic yogurt
2 T organic raw honey (not for those under 3 years old) OR organic maple syrup

1 C spring water
2 T vanilla
Berries (optional)

Combine flour, shelled hemp seed, baking powder, salt and soda in bowl.
Combine egg whites, yogurt, sweetener and water. Whisk in butter or oil.

Pour into dry ingredients. Use blender to mix to smooth consistency. Optional: add in Berries while cooking!

Cook on (buttered) griddle (medium heat, max 325F), until tops are bubbly – turn and cook until browned.

Serve with more maple syrup OR use the Savory Hemp Hummus or Hemp Butter, below. Can be frozen and heated up in toaster.

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SAVORY HEMP HUMMUS – Manitoba Harvest

Makes 4 cups Prep Time: 10 mins

3 C sprouted organic chick peas OR canned organic chickpeas OR beans
1/2 C hemp hearts (shelled hemp seed)

1/4 C hemp seed oil OR mix of hemp and olive OR all organic, extra-virgin olive oil
2 cloves organic garlic
1/4 C organic lemon juice

1/4 C organic parsley
2 T cumin powder
2 T organic red miso

1 t cayenne powder
1 T fresh cracked black pepper

Combine all ingredients in a blender or food processor. Blend on low, stopping to turn the mixture until smooth.

Can be stored in a sealed container in the refrigerator for 4 days.
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HEMP BUTTER

Makes 2 1/4 cups. Prep Time: 5 minutes

1 1/4 C organic hemp seed oil
1 lb organic unsalted butter

Soften butter in a container (over night usually does it)

Add 1 1/4 C hemp seed oil and blend in by hand until hemp oil and butter are partially mixed.

Now use a hand blender on low until it’s completely smooth (and green } texture. Refrigerate and remove a small pat when needed.

Usually softens enough to spread at room temp in about 10 minutes. Remember not to cook with it. Keep the temp low and simmer if you must. Compliments of Tom Kowalsky Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
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COCONUT MANNA™ OATMEAL

1 bowl of hot oatmeal
2 T Coconut Manna™ (organic, extra-virgin coconut oil)
2 T Nutiva shelled hempseed
1 T organic honey or organic maple syrup

Gently mix together. Serve hot or warm.
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VEGGIE HEMP CHILI – Manitoba Harvest

Makes: 6 servings
Prep Time: 10 min. Cook Time: 45 min.

2 t organic, extra-virgin coconut oil
3/4 onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced

3 C canned peeled organic tomatoes, chopped, with juice
1 C hemp hearts (shelled hemp seed)
1/3 C spring water

3 T chili powder, more if desired
2 t organic blackstrap molasses
3/4 t cumin

1/8 t cayenne pepper
1/2 t black pepper
1-1/2 C canned organic pinto beans, rinsed and drained

1-1/2 C canned organic black beans
1 jalapeno pepper (optional), diced

Heat oil in a heavy saucepan over medium heat. Saute onion and garlic until softened.

Stir in next 8 ingredients and bring to a boil. Immediately reduce heat to medium low and simmer 15 minutes.

Add beans and simmer another 20-30 minutes, adding water if chili becomes too thick. Stir jalapeno pepper into chili just before serving.
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VEGGIE HEMP BURGERS – Manitoba Harvest

Makes: 6 patties
Prep Time: 10 minutes Cook Time: 30 minutes

10 ounces soft tofu
1 C hemp hearts (shelled hemp seeds)
1/4 C sunflower seeds

1/4C scallions, chopped
2 T soy sauce
2 T nutritional yeast

1/2 t dried basil
2 C herb seasoned stuffing — substitute (2C cooked quinoa OR 2C cooked brown rice OR combo)

In a blender, puree tofu then add the rest of the ingredients except stuffing / quinoa and brown rice. Put the mix into a bowl and pour tofu mixture over top. Combine well. Form into burger patties and bake on a greased cookie sheet in a 300 F oven for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown.
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More hemp recipes next time!

Best to all — Em

Please also read the 4 years of still current articles in my archive. See the tab on the upper navigation bar. The extra page links are at the bottom of the first page.

You can also sign-up for email alerts for when I post to this blog. I try for once a week. The form is on the upper right of the side-bar. Thanks.

(c)2011 Em at https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.com

Please do not use my articles on junk blogs. I will prosecute you. The only use of my copyrighted article is 2 small paragraphs (with my website shown) without further permission, from me, in writing. Contact me at the About Me page on the upper navigation bar if you want to share more than 2 paragraphs. Thanks.

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“Everyone Knows Someone Who Needs This Information!” (TM)

As requested by a reader, I’m including photos and recipe for one of the Royal Wedding cakes.  All of us have these occasions and it’s worth commenting on changes that could make healthier fare. Also, learn how medium-chain fatty acids heal Alzheimers and help diabetics!

The main wedding cake, made by Fiona Cairns, was 8 tiers tall, and looks as it it either has “Royal Icing” which has a large number of egg whites involved OR it is a Marzipan covering, made from almonds. Either will be healthier than just the usual straight-sugar icing.

And, of course, one need not eat any of the icing, anyway!

The main cake was actually 17 different cakes, and as it was designed to portion out to 650 people, no-one was going to over-eat. That’s part of the key – suitable portion sizes. And, the choice was a brandied English fruit-cake, so the amount of sugary-batter was also diminished (but dried fruit is concentrated sweetness, so a little portion goes a long way).

The decorations were exquisitely done, and reflected the Victorian Language of Flowers — each blossom became a prayer for Catherine and William to grow their relationship deeper and deeper.

Here are the symbol flowers they chose:

White Rose – National symbol of England
Daffodil – National symbol of Wales, new beginnings

Shamrock – National symbol of Ireland
Thistle – National symbol of Scotland

Acorns, Oak Leaf – Strength, endurance
Myrtle – Love

Ivy – Wedded Love, Marriage
Lily-of-the-Valley – Sweetness, Humility

Rose (Bridal) – Happiness, Love
Sweet William – Grant me one smile

Honeysuckle – The Bond of Love
Apple Blossom – Preference, Good Fortune

White Heather – Protection, Wishes will come true
Jasmine (White) – Amiability

Daisy – Innocence, Beauty, Simplicity
Orange Blossom – Marriage, Eternal Love, Fruitfulness

And, the McVities Chocolate Digestive Tea Biscuit Cake was based on a not-sweet, plain biscuit (cookie in America) and dark chocolate (anti-oxidant rich) covering. Again, none of this need be overly sweet, as neither main ingredient is naturally sweet. Adding stevia to sweeten the chocolate could be an even better possibility than either agave nectar, honey or raw sugar.

I am going to include a link to the Queen’s recipe for Biscuit Cake, from former Palace Chef Darren O’ Grady’s site.

But, I prefer that you learn about something healthier that has much of the same flavor – it’s Dr. Mary Newport, MDs “Fudge”.

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Dr. Mary Newport, MDs Coconut Oil Fudge

Melt and mix together:

1 cup extra-virgin, organic coconut oil
1 cup dark chocolate chips (if unsweetened, add 1 – 2t agave nectar)
options: add organic shredded coconut or grated nuts

Divide equally into a plastic ice cube tray and place in freezer.  In a 16 cube tray, each cube will equal 1 tablespoon coconut oil to count towards your daily dose.

To make a “cake”, just pour the mix into a suitably-sized decorative jello mold, and refrigerate. It’s pretty much the same result as the McVitie cake without the biscuit carbs and we’re using an essential, healing-fat as base, instead.

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Why is Dr. Newport interested in us getting a quota of coconut oil daily, especially when it usually gets an undeserved bad-rap as a “saturated” fat (it’s the only vegetarian saturated fat).

She’s a world-class researcher on using the essential medium-chain fatty acids in coconut oil to build and re-build brain cells.

As a neonatologist, she’s concerned about building fetal, newborn and toddler brains properly, and polyunsaturated fats DON’T!

Brains are 70% fats, but they must be Omega-3 fats (from cold water fish like salmon, mackerel or herring OR from ground flax seed or from hemp seed) AND the medium-chain fatty acids which coconut oil supplies better than anything else (except mother’s milk).

In my archive, you’ll find many articles about coconuts as a foundational human food, and one which is quite alkaline pH.

Dr. Newport also got involved in further research on medium-chain fatty acids, as her brilliant husband began to suffer dementia (Alzheimer’s) and she helped to turn his condition around, completely.  As long as he stays on her coconut oil protocol, daily, he’s been “stabilized” and even partially-reversed with his dementia.

Alzheimer’s has been called Diabetes Type 3, and she learned that our brains make insulin, too, for their brain cells’ own use!

Their need for proper supplies of fuel are so critical, that when brain cells cannot biochemically get what they need, a whole “other” chemistry kicks in, one based on burning medium-chain fatty acids.

This kind of biochemistry can also be part of what may help some people to jump-start themselves out of “insulin resistance” (Type 2 diabetes), but you must be under the care of a knowledgeable practitioner.

Read much more about Dr. Newport and the doses and guidelines for coconut oil use at her website www.coconutketones.com Maybe her protocol can fill in some missing parts of your biochemistry, too. More on this next week, and the sneaky substance in our food which can kill insulin-producing brain cells!

Best to all — Em

Please also read the 4 years of still current articles in my archive. See the tab on the upper navigation bar. The extra page links are at the bottom of the first page.

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(c)2011 Em at https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.com

Please do not use my articles on junk blogs. I will prosecute you. The only use of my copyrighted article is 2 small paragraphs (with my website shown) without further permission, from me, in writing. Contact me at the About Me page on the upper navigation bar if you want to share more than 2 paragraphs. Thanks.

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“Everyone Knows Someone Who Needs This Information!” (TM)

Last time, I introduced the revolutionary ideas, research and results of the 50 year career of Dr. Brice E. Vickery, DC who has solved one of the largest health puzzles of them all, one with serious implications for healing diabetes.

Some people look down their noses at Alternative Medicine’s practitioners, but a caring healer, of any discipline, who uses astute observation and organized responses, can find out answers which less interested or less capable physicians miss. Period.

I’m not going to get involved in The Debate, although you’ve probably figured out which side I’m on, because what I deal with here is RESULTS, and Dr. Vickery has them, by the boatload.

Read Part 1 here:
Diabetes Solutions – Dr. Brice Vickery

Now, to continue —

How does Dr. Vickery find out about these imbalances which most other physicians miss, in their typical “exam” —  barely examining or questioning you in detail  or just interested in reading off your “lab test results” and then disengaging, regardless of your continued complaint and symptoms?

Dr. Vickery says: “When I discover viral or bacterial infections in my patients, one of the most frequent questions I am asked is, “Other doctors I’ve been to never found these things, how do you identify these infections?” The answer is simple, I am using a testing method that will allow me to search for diseases I suspect may be harbored by the body.”

“The currently accepted methods for testing in the field of status quo medicine are mainly biochemical. There is nothing wrong with these methods; they work well in certain instances. For instance blood and throat cultures for strep are fine if the strep is in either of these locations. But what if you are harboring strep, or hepatitis C, or Staph, etc., somewhere else, maybe your heart, spine, or brain? How do I find it? ”

“If I used a blood test, it may come up negative. Does this mean that the diagnosis for the pathogen is negative? No, it means I have to find the method that will allow me to test for strep in all areas of the body. The biochemical testing methods used today are not invalid, it’s just that these methods only allow them to find diseases part of the time …”.

And, all of us who have ever felt frustration at our physician, when dealing with “chronic” and “real” symptoms, know this all too well.

Dr. Vickery explains that these “usual” biochemical diagnostics are an outgrowth of Newtonian physics. In the 1700s, scientist Isaac Newton showed us that there are Universal Laws, by which the cosmos and our planet work.

Einstein did not prove Newton wrong, rather Albert just proved that Newtonian laws only applied in certain spheres, which did not always include energy.

Albert Einstein’s brilliant formula E=MC2 proves that Mass IS Energy, so the mass (our body) IS made of energy. We are Energy, living-energy.

So, in the recent past, many innovative doctors have developed  testing methods based on energy (quantum physics) in order to find out things that Newtonian methods could not.

Ancient Ayurveda, humanity’s first medical system, from 5,000 years ago in India, along with Traditional Chinese Medicine all understood the unseen biological energy pathways — which today we call “meridians” and acupuncture’s mapping makes them fully accessible.

Then, Dr. George Goodheart, DC, founder of Applied Kinesiology verified and showed the meridians to be an effective source of deep, personalized, location-specific information of Health and of Illness. Use the link to learn more about Applied Kinesiology.

Energy medicine will be as Thomas Edison said a century ago, “the Medicine of the Future”. Well, it IS here today.

Energy Medicine has been evolving since the nineteenth century in Europe and America, and the FDA and the FTC, finally,  now recognize certain of these testing methods as emerging science (often they are shamed into doing so because Europeans have long since approved and are benefiting from these techniques and equipment for diagnostics).

Dr. Vickery has been using these methods for many years now. I personally had a “work-up” done 20 years ago by my Naturopathic physician, and it was spot-on; he used both applied kinesiology and a form of the other energy diagnostic tool  –  a type of electro-acupuncture diagnostic machine developed by Dr. Reinhardt Voll, MD.

Dr. Vickery says: “Using either electro-acupuncture or kinesiology with homeopathic medicines I can locate in just a few minutes the presence of many different pathogens and toxic metals, measure their levels, and pinpoint the tissues and organs in which they reside“.

No need for expensive and mostly ineffective lab tests. Why does this work?

Everything in the universe has an energy footprint.

One sees that in inanimate objects (e.g. using a spectrometer) AND in human and other biological forms (which is why Royal Rife‘s machine in the 1920’s was able to cure “incurable” diseases, once the pathogens energy-frequency was found, and that was validated by visiting physicians from the Mayo Clinic as well as physicians and academics from UCLA — before US Government Hooligan “Agents” stole the machine, lab notes and set the research back another 80+ years).

Energy signatures of all imbalances and pathogens involved, blocked and open pathways, strength of response — all provide the crucial information for an effective diagnosis and treatment.

Understanding the complex biochemistry of living systems, and with these energetic sign-posts, has enabled Dr. Vickery to understand the Whole Picture. And, smartly, he saw that giving the ill person’s body the most effective, natural building blocks (what your body uses very effectively to heal itself) was what was needed for Healing.

Just as the father of European Medicine, Hippocrates, said thousands of years ago, “Let Food Be Thy Medicine“,  Dr. Vickery took that one step farther.

Brice made a way for people to be able to ABSORB the vital  nutrients their bodies needed but were NOT getting, no matter how much healthy food they were eating, because their digestion was SO impaired. We learned what that special formula was and where to get it last time.

So, how does this help those struggling with hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) and diabetes (hyperglycemia – high blood sugar)?

Well, the source of most diseases is pancreatic overload or pancreatic burn-out, which means that you cannot DIGEST the food you take in. Period.

Because of the lack of alkaline pancreatic enzymes, your food will not be processed in a way that helps you to fuel and heal your body, and each successive day that this continues just adds to the downward spiral.

You ARE malnourished, especially in regard to protein, no matter how much protein you have tried to bring into your body. And, just any old enzyme supplement does NOT apply here.

Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) is the common condition that Dr. Vickery finds in Fibromyalgia (FM) patients, too, leading to the root cause of FM, protein deficiency.

Hypoglycemia is a condition which has at least 100 different symptoms associated with it. For example, symptoms are: weakness, disorientation, headaches, slurred speech, tiredness or nervousness. If blood sugar levels become too low, even coma and death can happen. Sadly enough, doctors will often end up misdiagnosing this simple problem because they fail to administer a 6 hour glucose tolerance test or they misinterpret the results.

Diabetes and FM, along with all other disease, really starts, with pancreatic overload, which leads to loss of digestive function and then to protein deficiency in the body.

As mentioned, Dr. Vickery developed a highly efficient and accurate form of applied kinesiology, called the Vickery-Voll Test which allows him to test the three specific pancreas acupuncture points:

___  protein(1)

___   carbohydrate(2)

___   and fat(3).

If the number 2 point shows up, he knows that carbohydrate metabolism is impaired, which is the defining attribute of hypoglycemia.

This will happen when a person consumes too much sugar or refined carbohydrate, because your pancreas will work overtime secreting insulin to lower blood sugar and your adrenals will become stressed by producing high levels of adrenalin so that the liver cannot convert amino acids and fats to glucose to raise blood sugar back up again.

In this process all 3 acupuncture points will eventually register impaired metabolism.

But, it is with Point 1, protein deficiency, that FM finally occurs.

Meanwhile the thyroid gland is attempting to control the rate for utilizing blood sugar in your body, so it is working overtime also. That explains the epidemic of thyroid disease and obesity, too, from another source beyond the lack of detox mentioned in last week’s article.

The weakest link in your system determines how your body fails.

___ If the adrenals are the weakest, hypoglycemia will occur.

___ If the pancreas fails, diabetes will follow.

___ If the thyroid crashes, Hashimoto’s Disease could happen.

___ If the liver malfunctions, cirrhosis will develop.

Other glands also become involved in the imbalance including the hypothalamus, the pituitary and the sex glands.

Digestion becomes impaired as the pancreas stops making the necessary digestive enzymes, and now the entire body becomes deficient in proteins, its structural and functional building blocks, as well as necessary for nutrient transport and healthy immune response.

If the pancreas does not have the necessary amino acids it will not make digestive enzymes or glucagons (which allows the liver to convert glycogen, a sort of stored sugar, into glucose), nor will the adrenals make adrenalin (which allows the liver to convert protein and fats to glucose for balanced blood sugar.)

If the body cannot do these things blood sugars can never be properly balanced (no matter what medicine you take), and the glands will always be overworking to try to control an out-of-control situation.

Two things are necessary:

1. a low glycemic, low refined-carbohydrate, no sugar diet (gives over-worked glands a rest) (The Zone diet would be a good start.)
2. a balanced blend of immediately-available essential amino acids to start the system working properly again.

Dr. Vickery’s decades of experience shine through in his statement:

“But don’t make the mistake of thinking any amino acids will work, we already tried that, I had to develop a very specific blend of essential amino acids in the correct balance to one another. I want to make that very clear because if the amino acids are taken in the incorrect amounts or out of balance, you could just end up doing yourself more harm. All of my FM patients who have followed my FM program faithfully have gotten well. ” And, FM is the most-complex response in this symptom-cascade.

I may come back to another facet of this next time. Meanwhile, try to find a Holistic Physician who is “open” to working with you and to work with Dr. Vickery, (who wants to train more physicians in his method, before he dies).

What a shame it will be if we lose this opportunity. Jump on it!

Sign-up for alerts for when I post. You can do that at the top of right side-bar.

Read the Titles Archive (tab on the upper navigation bar). There’s 4 years of still-current info!

Best to all — Em

(c)2011 Em at https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.com

Please respect my copyright. You may quote 2 short paragraphs in your article or on your site (please provide a link back here). To quote more, please contact me for permission at the About Me page on the upper navigation bar. Thanks!

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“Everyone Knows Someone Who Needs This Information!” (TM)

For diabetics, even though Egypt is reaching out to enter a new epoch in its long history as a nation, its recent events brings up the issues of navigating the modern world for diabetics. For those with diabetes, worrying about family in Egypt during the recent revolution probably found their diabetic blood sugars upset or even out of control blood sugar levels. Stress does this. Those diabetics caught in the midst of the unrest also potentially found access to medication, food and medical care upset. All this means you always have to have a personal back-up food and medication plan and when you travel, even doubly so.

In solidarity with the hopes of the Egyptian people, in their quest for clean elections and honest self-government, I will share a recipe for Koshari – Egypt’s national food.

Like our hamburgers and fries, this is the food Egyptians love. It is usually vegetarian, filling and inexpensive. With fewer Egyptians eating at home, especially for lunch, the Koshari cooks work from street carts in the marketplace.

Their clanking serving spoons on the bowls holding the diverse grains, legumes, spices, and sauces makes a tapping sound, like music, and that draws the hungry shoppers and workers walking by. For the humblest workers, a breakfast of Koshari may be the only meal until just before bed, late at night.

Usually Koshari is a combination: of lentils, garbanzo beans (chickpeas, ceci), Egyptian basmati rice and a macaroni pasta. It is topped with: spice blends, garlic and  tomato sauce, then garnished with caramelized onions, vinegar and a tangy traditional Shatta salsa.

The preparation is important – all the legumes, macaroni and rice must be kept to small dollop-size portions, and each must be cooked separately, so that each item holds its flavor.

Rinse the cooked beans ( matpe or brown lentils) in boiling water, after cooking to remove any residual starch film – the impact of that technique is to feature each item’s taste, purely, then enhance them with a generally applied sauce that elevates the  dance into a whirlwind of flavor and aroma.

French green lentils (preferably organic) may not be a traditionally-used lentil, but these are much more nutritious.

This is a dish with many sources of vegetarian protein, so in the combination, there’s probably sufficient amino acids BUT as Egypt is not a wealthy country for the general population, the balance of carbohydrates in the dish is very high. This would be better to bring the meal more in a Zone recipe balance by adding 4 – 6 ozs. of a steamed or poached or grilled fish fillet, and a large green salad (including deep greens like kale, romaine, parsley and cilantro) which can stand up to Koshari’s spicy sauce while adding a counter-point.

I first saw Anthony Bourdain enjoying this dish on his series No Reservations and I was intrigued. It was hard to decide which Koshari recipe to use to represent a nation, but you’ll easily find more online if you want. Just remember, as diabetics, carbohydrates are the issue! Carbs must be fewer in quantity and frequency if they are from grains, period.

By adding oil and the fiber from beans and the salad, the blood sugar response timing is slowed down. Then, by only having a small portion of Koshari, bolstering the meal with healthy lean protein from fish and incorporating a salad, you have a better Zone meal, safer for those with diabetes.

There’s approximately 360 calories in the Koshari portion of the meal, along with about 63 grams of carbohydrate and only 14 grams of vegetarian protein — that’s why you need the 4 – 6 0z. portion of fish. My notes are included in parentheses.

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Guardian.co.uk Koshari

AHDAF SOUEIF’S TRADITIONAL EGYPTIAN KOSHARI

Serves 4

2 C  pasta (macaroni and broken-up angel hair pasta)
1 C Egyptian basmati rice, washed
1 handful vermicelli, cracked (this is like angel-hair pasta or thinnest spaghetti) (or chicken flavored Rice-A-Roni)

1 C brown lentils, washed (I suggest French green lentils)
2 medium onions
2 tomatoes, juiced (or equivalent of organic canned tomatoes)

1 T sunflower oil (or organic, extra-virgin olive oil is even better)
3/4t sea salt
1t   pepper

chili powder (optional)
chicken stock bouillon cube (optional)

tomato paste concentrate
4 cloves garlic
3 limes (or small lemons)
1 heaping teaspoon cumin

Additional Garnish: Bragg’s organic apple cider vinegar, cilantro, parsley
4 – 6 oz. fish fillet – poached and put on the side
Salad ingredients – as desired, in a separate dish

———————————————————————————————————————————

• Boil the second set of pasta, separately, in salted water till cooked (less than 10 minutes or instructions on box).
• Meanwhile, bring the lentils to the boil in water then simmer (20 minutes), taking care not to over-cook.

• Fry the rice and vermicelli briefly in 1T of oil then add 1C of water. Bring to the boil and season with a little salt. When the water recedes so that it is just a film on the surface, put on the lowest possible heat and cook undisturbed for 20 minutes. (OR you could use a box of chicken flavored Rice-A-Roni, if you want.)

For the Basic Red Sauce

• Put the juiced tomatoes into a saucepan.
• Heat some oil in a frying pan. Dice one onion finely and fry till golden.

• Pour the onion mixture into the juiced tomatoes. (You could now add the chicken stock cube to the mixture if desired.)
• Add 1t of pepper and 3/4t of salt. (If you like your food hot, this is the moment to add chili powder, to taste.)

• When the sauce has reduced nicely, add half a small carton or can of tomato paste concentrate and 1 ½  cups of water. Simmer.

For the tangy sauce – the “takhdi’ah” or “shatta

• Peel and crush 4 cloves of garlic.
• Mix with the juice of the limes (or lemons).

• Season with salt and up to 1 teaspoon of cumin (add in increments).
• Add spoonfuls from the red sauce into the shatta mixture. Start tasting after 12 spoonfuls. When you like the taste, stop. Finally, add a drop of oil to give it a shine.

Poach, steam or grill your fish portion, to balance the meal.

For the garnish

• Slice 1 onion into fine crescents and fry it dry in a frying pan for about five minutes (this is to get rid of the water in the onion).

· Add 3T of oil and fry till dark brown, but not burned. You must watch the pan!

• Drain the onion of any excess oil and spread on some kitchen paper towel.

To serve

• Place on a flat plate or in (rimmed) bowls. Put 1 layer of pasta, followed by 1 layer of rice, followed by 1 layer of lentils. Each layer is slightly smaller than those below. You make a dome.

(OR, add as dollops of the pasta, pasta mix and lentils, with the sauce and garnishes just in the center, so you can mix and combine more individually. This is the way I believe I saw the plate Anthony Bourdain was served.)

Spoon over the tomato sauce, then add some takhdi’ah in the middle. Add the fried onions on top of the  takhdi’ah sauce.

• Serve with the poached fish and a green salad on the side – preferably dark green, like rocket, spinach or watercress and fresh serve a non-acidic juice or water.

Follow with a glass of fresh mint tea. (This is very traditional end to an Egyptian meal.)

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Enjoy!

Next week, it will be 4 years since I started writing this blog. I hope I will continue to be able to be of service to you, Dear Reader.

Best to all — Em

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(c)2011 Em at http://diabetesdietdialogue.com

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“Everyone Knows Someone Who Needs This Information!” (TM)

Valentine’s Day, the sweetest day of the year, is a demanding time for diabetics. With diabetes and obesity rampant, we have to show love in other ways, and not just one day a year either. Here are some healthier suggestions! And, as it’s my husband’s birthday soon, I get to do this double!

Start off with great, delicious breakfast and end with a romantic, healthier dinner dessert, and spend a life-affirming, balanced day in between. Let’s start!

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EM’S EGGS BENEDICTA – A VALENTINE’S DAY RECIPE

2 poached Omega-3, free-range eggs
2 toasted crumpets (Trader Joe’s and other fine supermarkets) *
4 oz. packet wild salmon lox (smoked salmon) without nitrites (Trader Joe’s and maybe Portlock brand)
1 t organic butter
2 oz. sliced Provolone cheese (i.e. 2 one-ounce slices)

Fruit or veggies on the side – preferably 1/2″ diced steamed sweet potatoes = 1 whole sweet potato**

___   Preheat your broiler. Start your kettle of water.  Prepare the 1/2 inch diced sweet potatoes in a steamer – either full cook or just rewarming from those made yesterday.

___  While the oven is heating, use the wide slots on your toaster and toast the crumpets a couple of times, so they are a little crisp. Prep your fruit or other veggies (better), if using more than the sweet potatoes.

___   Meanwhile, start poaching your eggs in an egg poacher.

Then spread organic butter lightly over their tops of the warm crumpets.

___   Wash the lox packet, dry and open it. Watch you animals if you have any — this is snatching time!

___   Next add one slice of provolone cheese to each crumpet and put it on a tray under the broiler — briefly — just until the cheese melts.

Make your warm drinks.

___   Once the cheese melts, remove the warm crumpet to the plate. Top with the poached egg and then the smoked salmon lox. Using kitchen scissors, you may feel ambitious enough to cut the lox into a heart shape, or not.

Set up the plates. Use the steamy sweet potatoes as a golden-ring around the crumpet. Serve.

* use crumpets, as with all their holes, they actually aren’t a big carb hit. So with the fat and with the protein, you have a slower glycemic meal. If you have veggies, it will be easier on your digestion than if you have fruit. But, if you have strong digestion, then you should be “covered” to add a few more grapes, apples or berries on the side.

** made day before and reheated, or made fresh. The sweet potatoes are important to use, as they are a very pH alkaline food to help offset the more pH acidic foods of the eggs, grains and dairy.

Also, I designed this recipe to compete with Eggs Benedict. I think it’s lots healthier and just as creamy and decadent tasting. Enjoy!

(c)2011 Em at http://DiabetesDietDialogue.wordpress.com
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And now for that decadent dessert …

Ellie Krieger’s DARK CHOCOLATE ALMOND, CHERRY CLUSTERS

Make these the evening before Valentine’s Day, if you want.
Prep time: 15 minutes
Inactive Prep time: 15 minutes
Makes 12 clusters

1 C        toasted almonds (I leave them raw)
1/2C   dried cherries, coarsely chopped
6 ozs.   dark chocolate, finely chopped *
In a medium bowl, toss together the almonds and the cherries. Line a baking sheet with waxed paper.

Melt half the chocolate in the top of a double boiler over slightly simmering water, over the lowest possible heat, stirring frequently. Make sure the water is not touching the top pan.

Remove the double boiler from the heat and stir in the rest of the chocolate. Remove the top pan with the chocolate in it, gently wipe the bottom of it and set it aside for a moment.

Replace the simmering water in the bottom pan with warm tap water. Put the pan of melted chocolate on top of the warm water this time. This will keep the chocolate at the right temperature while you make the clusters.

Stir the fruit-nut mixture into the chocolate. Spoon out heaping tablespoon-sized clusters of the chocolate mixture onto the lined baking sheet about 1-inch apart.

Put them in the refrigerator to set for 15 minutes. Store and serve at room temperature.

* It is important to only use dark chocolate – 70% – 80% cacao is best, but “bittersweet” is the lowest you should use. NO milk chocolate!. Ghiradelli Bittersweet Baking Chocolate is a good choice, in America. Callebaut, elsewhere. Both of these are 60% cacao and a good balance of cocoa butter and chocolate nibs as well as sweetness. You do not need to use a 70% source.

Dark chocolate is filled with healthy compounds, especially anti-oxidants. If to find the cherries don’t sweeten it enough, then add some luo han guo, or 1 teaspoon of REAL maple syrup (which has some benefits for diabetics if used carefully).

Luo han guo is a natural sweetener available in good health stores. OR get something even better for a natural diabetic sweetener, online, Lakanto at Body Ecology.

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Enjoy a relaxing day and a Valentine’s walk somewhere beautiful, with a loved one. Valentine’s Day is not just for sweethearts, it’s for all those you love.

Make it an important day that sets the pace for many more during the year.

Live long and be happy and healthy. Each day is a Gift. Please treat it that way.

Happy 69th Birthday to my sweet husband of more than 40 years. You are a really special person!

Best to all,
Em

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(c)2011 Em at https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.com

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