Showing posts with label detox. Show all posts
Showing posts with label detox. Show all posts

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Spring Vegetable Soup (Immune Balance Soup) with a Review of "The Allergy Solution" by Leo Galland, M.D. and for Souper (Soup, Salad & Sammie) Sundays

Today's soup is a mild, immune-balancing vegetable soup for a three day cleanse or "power wash" I am doing this weekend. Not your normal Souper Sundays offering but realistic as it's what I am eating and also part of my review for a book that I am reviewing/sharing here. 
I came across a link for information about a new book, The Allergy Solution: The Surprising, Hidden Truth About Why You Are Sick and How To get Well by Leo Galland M.D. and his son, Jonathan Galland. Since I am always trying to find better solutions for my reoccurring allergy and asthma issues, I was immediately interested and did a little research by reading a couple of articles about the book and an excerpt, and since it all made a lot of sense, I downloaded the book on Kindle along with a bonus interview and food/recipe guide. I skimmed through the first few chapters and having a relatively quiet weekend planned, decided to do the three-day food reset included in the book before going back and reading it in detail. (Maybe not the best plan but how I operate!) ;-) 

My Review:

First, a little background on the Three-Day Power Wash since that's what I started with. The power wash consists of nourishing yourself with three components over three days: an Immune Balance Smoothie, an Immune Balance Soup and organic oolong tea (which studies have shown to offer anti-allergic benefits). You have the smoothie for breakfast and an afternoon snack, the soup for lunch or dinner and four cups of the tea throughout the day. (You can also add an extra glass of smoothie or bowl of soup if you get hungry, however, I am on day two and have been satisfied without any extras as the smoothie has an avocado and chia seeds and is quite satiating.

I know cleanses or detoxes are not everyone's thing  but I think they are a great way to reset the body. Dr. Galland says to think of it "like mediation, a program to access the inner stillness and wisdom of the body" and to "cut through the noise of everyday life and the usual eating patterns to get to a quieter place where you can listen to your body." He refers to the power wash as "clearing the tracks" to cleanse the body by reducing the common allergenic foods to help identify and ultimately eliminate your problem foods. Although I began attempting to do something similar on my own earlier this year by spending the first few months eliminating wheat/gluten, dairy and processed sugar, I started to drift off track and wanted to refocus and get back to finding a possible food solution for the allergy issues that trigger my asthma. Although my asthma is not severe (no emergency room visits), it is chronic and I go through periods after a cold or allergy flair up where it is defined as acute asthma and where it is definitely not under control, so I am trying to take it more seriously and crack the code.

The recipe for the Immune Balance Soup and other components of the three-day plan are in the book, along with steps for a two-week re-entry phase to add back in foods and test reactions, and the Immune Balance Diet, an ongoing eating plan. I would have liked a little more detail/direction for the Three-Day Power Wash. For example, the smoothie seemed like it should be divided into two servings as with everything included (fruit, greens, a whole avocado, chia seeds, green tea, optional banana), it makes two fairly large glasses and is extremely filling. It doesn't spell that out, but does say the smoothie becomes more creamy if allowed to chill (chia seeds) so I made the recipe in the morning and divided it into two servings, drinking one glass for breakfast and saving the other for my afternoon snack. Was that right or wrong? I don't know but I never felt hungry or too full which the book said was where I should be. The soup information said to enjoy a large mug or bowl, so I took that as a serving of 1 1/2 to 2 cups depending on my mood/hunger level. Also, I jumped into the Three Day Power Wash before reading beyond it (my bad!) and in further reading, there are several warnings for people with asthma not to do the two weeks of re-entry food testing (due to the complications of asthma as an allergy disorder, the many types of asthma, and the potential severity of allergic reactions) which was a bit disappointing as I was fired up. I do understand the reasons behind it and there is good information in a later chapter on asthma about diet and the balance of nutrition and environmental factors. I will be exploring some of the suggestions in detail, along with trying the Immune Balance Diet, looking into some supplements and making a bigger push for ensuring I am regularly getting higher intake of antioxidant rich foods. I have no known food allergies after being tested a couple of years ago, but I feel that what I eat definitely plays a role in my breathing and my lungs and overall health. I had an appointment with my doctor on Friday and I asked her about the power wash, trying some of the supplements and other advice in the book and she had no issues and wants to hear about my results in a few months. So even though I did things a bit backwards by not reading more of the book before diving in, I am not sorry I made the effort  to clear the tracks for a few days and it's a good jump-start (or re-jump-start I suppose)

Although focused heavily on food and nutrition, the book addresses other non-food lifestyle aspects of allergy solutions too. The chapter on Cracking the Code with the Allergy Solution Checklist of Symptoms, Rate Your Symptoms, and Search for Triggers tools are very valuable, gave me a lot to think about, and I am continuing to go through those sections and exercises in detail. I like the clear way the authors explain the science and data researched, the reasons behind the nutrition connection, and the importance of lifestyle changes. Although the book advises repeatedly to get/keep your doctor involved in solutions, it gives encouragement and ownership of health to the individual where I feel it is best suited. With a quick initial read and more work to do, I am finding The Allergy Solution a valuable resource for me and I would recommend that anyone with ongoing allergies and symptoms that are negatively impacting their health and wellbeing look into this book

About the Soup:

The Immune Balance Soup is a vegan soup with plenty of vegetables (about four servings of veggies in a large mug of it) that are nutritious and support a healthy immune system carrots, parsley, green onions--green parts only, broccoli, baby kale, plus turmeric, black pepper, sea salt, and a topping of shredded daikon radish--added just before serving. The carrots are sauteed in olive oil, so there is a bit of healthy fat in there and the the turmeric, black pepper and salt keep it from being too bland. 

I did have to swap out the broccoli--sadly, as I know it's a nutritional powerhouse, but I get terrible stomach pains from it and Dr. Galland makes it clear to omit any ingredients from the soup or smoothie that you are allergic or sensitive to. (Plus who wants to spend a three-day cleanse curled up in ball writhing in agony?!) ;-) Since the nightshade family (tomatoes, eggplant, potatoes and peppers) and garlic, onion bulbs, mushrooms, corn and beans are on the no-no list for the three days, I grabbed some local asparagus to sub in for the broccoli and also added a half of a zucchini I had on hand

Notes/Results: Was I missing my usually garlic, onion, other spices, and touch of acidity from lemon (all on the "avoid" list for the Three-Day Power Wash) for this veggie soup? Yes, a bit, as I like big flavor in my soups. But, although this soup is mild in flavor, it's actually pretty good, even better after it has sat and the flavors continue to meld. It is noted in the book that you can blend it but as the other component of the three days is a smoothie, I find I need the chew factor of a the veggies for the most satisfaction. The daikon radish is supposed to be shredded and I spiralized it so it felt like slurping up noodles--another thing that adds to making three days of the same smoothie and soup a bit more fun--along with enjoying it out of a colorful bowl. (Truly though, in case you were wondering, I have not suffered at all on this plan--the smoothie is very satisfying, as is the soup and I have had plenty of energy and feel grounded and good on Day 2.) Overall, it's a good basic veggie soup and I would make it again.

The Allergy Solution is my eighth entry for the Foodies Read 2016 event. You can check out the May Foodies Read linkup, hosted by Heather at Based on a True Story, to see what foodie books that everyone is reading this month.

Two salads from friends and an open-faced sandwich from me were at last week's Souper (Soup, Salad, & Sammie) Sundays linkup. Here's the recap:

Vicki of I'd Rather Be At The Beach made Yotam Ottolenghi's Seriously Zesty Bread Salad and says, "YUM! I loved it! It was light and fresh and one of the best tomato/cucumber salads I’ve ever tried. I loved the toasted bread, it gave the salad a nice crunch. It was simple to make and had easy to find ingredients. I plan on making this again!"

Tina of Squirrel Head Manor made Curtis Stone's Baby Spinach Salad with Crispy Bacon and Cherry Tomatoes and says, "The Curtis Stone recipes we have tried so far have been great. Only one screw up (that was a roast pork dinner that was tossed for the foxes) but the other recipes - delicious! This particular salad we have had a few times. ... Not for vegetarians because the bacon (and tomatoes cooked in bacon) are stars of this salad."

These Smoked Salmon Tartines with Red Onion-Caper Relish, also by Curtis Stone, were too delicious for me not to share again with Souper Sundays. I think open-faced sandwiches like tartines are my favorite because you can consume less bread and pile "the good stuff' on top. Here it's a lemon and chive cream cheese mixture, smoked salmon, and a relish of (extra) capers, red onions, dill and mustard seeds. Yum!

Thanks to Vicki and Tina for linking up again last week!

If you would like to join in Souper (Soup, Salad, and Sammie) Sundays I would love to have you! Here's how...

To join in this week's linkup with your soup, salad or sandwich:

  • Link up your soup (stew, chili, soupy curries, etc. are fine), salad, or sandwich dish, (preferably one from the current week or month--but we'll take older posts too) on the picture link below and leave a comment on this post so I am sure not to miss you.
On your entry post (on your blog):
  • please mention Souper (Soup, Salad & Sammies) Sundays at Kahakai Kitchen and link back to this post.
  • you are welcome to add the wonderful Souper Sundays logo (created by Ivy at Kopiaste) to your post and/or blog (optional). 


Have a happy, healthy week!

Thursday, May 8, 2014

The Book Tour Stops Here: Ready to Reset Your Tastebuds & Conquer Your Food Cravings? "The 3-Day Reset"--(Pre-Review) Teaser & Signed Book Giveaway!

Walk yourself into any grocery store, restaurant, or average household in America and you'll find a bevvy of unhealthy food choices--often packaged, processed, over-salted and over-sugared and, for most of us, far more tempting to the taste buds than quinoa, kale or beets. It just isn't easy these days to make the best choices for our bodies and our health. There's a new book that released this week to provide some help in conquering your food cravings and making better choices.   

Paperback: 312 pages
Publisher: Seal Press (May 6, 2014)

The 3-Day Reset: Restore Your Cravings for Healthy Foods in Three Easy, Empowering Days by Pooja Mottl is a new healthy living book that helps reset cravings for 10, common, everyday (often packaged and/or heavily processed) foods and replace them with WAMPs (Whole And Minimally Processed Foods). Mottl takes on the obvious food villains--sugar, salt, and wheat for many but, also shows you how to reset your cravings and upgrade to healthier, less-processed choices for common consumables like chocolate, yogurt, chicken, salad, beverages, take-out food and breakfast. I have been paging through this colorful and informative book and it's recipes this past week and enjoying it. I'll be trying the tips, road testing some of the recipes and reviewing The 3-Day Reset next month for TLC Book Tours. To whet your appetite (food pun intended), here is more about the book including some excerpts, the book trailer to view and, most importantly, a chance to win your own signed copy!

Author Notes: Pooja Mottl is a natural foods chef, healthy eating coach, and healthy living expert whose work has captivated audiences from Good Morning America and Martha Stewart Radio to and The Huffington Post. She lives with her family in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Publisher's Blurb:

"Eating healthy can be a struggle. It’s hard to choose broccoli and brown rice instead of hot, cheesy pizza. And diets often ask you to cut out different foods all at once, leaving you feeling deprived.

In The 3-Day Reset, Pooja Mottl outlines 10 simple ways you can change your cravings and start eating whole, healthy, delicious foods—three days at a time. Each reset takes only 72 hours to complete, which means you’ll be able to stay focused on healthy eating from start to finish.

Accessible, fun, engaging, and packed with over 30 delicious recipes, pantry makeover lists, shopping guides, tidbits on food history, and other smart tools, The 3-Day Reset will set you on the course to healthy eating… and help you stay there for good."

Watch the Book Trailer:

The 3-Day Reset Book Trailer from POOJA MOTTL on Vimeo.

Excerpt from the Sugar Reset chapter--The 3-Day Reset by Pooja Mottl:

Sugar Reset

Sweet stuff rocks. To many of us, sugary foods are as good as it gets—more tempting than sour, more satisfying than spicy, more comforting than salty. This makes sense since we’re programmed to like sweet things from the moment we’re born—one of the reasons why we enjoy our mother’s sweet breast milk as babies.

The problem is, the majority of sweetness we’re now eating doesn’t suit our biology.
Instead of satisfying our sweet tooth with things like ripe summer berries, dried figs, grapes, and raw honey (all WAMP foods), we’re drowning ourselves with processed table sugar and corn syrup.

And it’s everywhere. Processed sugar has managed to tiptoe its way into almost all kinds of foods without our noticing. It is a main ingredient in peanut butters, salad dressings, marinades, barbecue sauces, sports drinks, frozen pizza, and crackers. Even savory foods, like breads, pasta sauce, and chicken broth, are laden with processed sugars. Sadly, it’s fair to say that sugar is the lifeblood of the food industry.

Sugar goes down like water, and we’re consuming it with reckless abandon. According to the USDA, the average American eats about twenty-two teaspoons of sugar, or about 13 percent of our total calories, each and every day. Okay, let’s think about this for a second: That’s like opening up your kitchen silverware drawer, grabbing a teaspoon, jamming it into your sugar bowl, and sticking it straight inside your mouth twenty-two times a day.

It doesn’t help that sugar is notoriously difficult to detect in foods. Not only is there no distinct line item for “added sugars” on the nutrition-facts panel of your food’s label, but sugar also masquerades under a long and complicated list of aliases that would make even Jason Bourne weep with jealousy. “Dextrose,” “fructose,” “cane juice,” and “maltose” all mean that sugar has been added to your food. Same with “invert sugar,” “corn-syrup solids,” and “lactose.”

Apart from the obvious health consequences that arise from consuming too much processed sugar—like diabetes, weight gain, obesity, and hypertension—eating sugar may very well be the single biggest impediment to falling in love with healthy food. As we learned in The Power of WAMP, processed sugar exploits our innate biological weaknesses, lulling us into addiction and desensitizing our taste buds to the point that we can no longer find deliciousness in the kind of food that wants to love us back. When we become accustomed to processed sugar, suddenly, sweet WAMP foods become nothing short of sacrifices. A bowl of oats with cinnamon and banana pales in comparison to a vanilla-glazed scone from Starbucks or a bowl of Froot Loops. Even the best loose-leaf tea no longer tastes good without an extra sugar packet or two.

But we can—right now—slam on the brakes and put this train in reverse. All we have to do is reset our relationship with sugar. We need to put an end to our sugar ignorance and off-kilter sweet palate and relearn sugar from the ground up. We also need the opportunity to experience what it’s like not to have processed sugar in our lives, and give our taste buds the chance to be awakened and excited by the superior flavor that comes from WAMP sweetness.

Sugar Info Graphic from The 3-Day Reset

***Book Giveaway***

Ready to win your own signed copy of The 3-Day Reset? (U.S. & Canada only please)

To enter leave a comment on this post with what food craving/addiction you are most interested in re-setting by 11:59 PM (Hawaii Standard Time) Friday, May 16th. A winner will be drawn from all qualifying comments and announced on this blog the following week. (Please me leave a way to get in contact with you if you should win too!)

 Note: Drawing is closed and the winner is Debra of Eliot's Eats! Congrats! 

Note: A review copy of "The 3-Day Reset" and a copy to give away to one of my blog readers were provided by the publisher and TLC Book Tours in return for a fair and honest review. I was not compensated for this review and as always my thoughts and opinions are my own.

You can see the stops for the rest of the TLC Book Tour Release Week Teasers and Reviews here.  


Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Kabocha Squash Ice Cream (Vegan, Non-Dairy) {#12WksWinterSquash}

What better way to end 12 weeks of cooking with winter squash than to go out with dessert?! In this case, it's a healthy one--a dairy-free, vegan Kabocha Squash Ice Cream from "The Fresh Energy Cookbook: Detox Recipes to Supercharge Your Life" by Natalia Rose and Doris Choi. 

I am not normally a squash sweet/dessert kind of person, a lot due to my complete aversion to the pumpkin pie spice that usually accompanies it--but, I was intrigued by this ice cream and decided to leave out the pumpkin pie spice and make a maple-cinnamon version. My changes to the recipe are in red below. 

This ice cream is a nutritional powerhouse of vitamins A & C, B6, fiber, manganese and other vitamins and minerals and so f anyone tells you that you have to eat your veggies before you eat dessert, you can tell them you are doing it at the same time. ;-)

Kabocha Squash Ice Cream
Adapted From "The Fresh Energy Cookbook" by Natalia Rose & Doris Choi
(Makes 1 quart)

2 cups coconut milk, chilled
2 cups kabocha squash puree
3/4 cup agave nectar or stevia (I subbed in 1/2 cup maple syrup)
1 Tbsp pure vanilla extract
1 Tbsp maple extract (omitted)
2 Tbsp pumpkin pie spice (I used 1 1/2 Tbsp ground cinnamon)
1/2 tsp salt

Combine all ingredients in a blender, then process through an ice cream maker. Can serve topped with dark chocolate  sauce if desired. (Note: I combined my cooked kabocha and all other ingredients in the blender and pureed until smooth, then chilled overnight in fridge before processing in ice cream maker.)

Notes/Results: Super-creamy, sweet and full of good cinnamon-maple flavor. I think the change to maple syrup in place of agave or stevia, and using a lesser amount was a good idea as it allowed the kabocha and cinnamon to come through. Very rich and satisfying and worth making again--maybe with some chai spices for a fun variation. 

Yikes! It's been 12 weeks! This is my last and final dish for the 12 Weeks of Winter Squash Event hosted by my friends Heather and Joanne. :-( Feel free to link up your winter squash dishes during the week at the linky below or on any one of the other participating blogs.    


Sunday, January 12, 2014

A Three-Soup Sunday (Squash, Red Pepper & Cucumber) to Detox or Just Enjoy for Souper (Soup, Salad & Sammie) Sundays {#12WksWinterSquash}

Three soups on one post might seem like a bit of an overkill but I had been feeling the need for a little 'detoxing' and having a few different tasty soups on hand helps set me up for success. I picked these vegan soups from three different detox/cleanse books to give me some variety--I like to look forward to what I am eating when I am cleansing. 

The Delish Squash Bisque is hearty and warming, the Roasted Red Pepper Soup is vibrant and can be eaten warm or cold and the Cucumber Celery and Dill Soup (called the "Souper Supper' in that book) is cooling but with a kick of spicy jalapeno at the end.  

I spent about an hour total cooking and blending time Saturday morning putting all of them together--the only one that cooks is the bisque, so I made the others during the down time. The bisque makes about six servings, the others make about two servings and they are easy to pull out of the fridge to mix and match. These soups are simple and flavorful and when combined with the green juice, veggie-rich smoothies, vegan Caesar salads, wild salmon and greens, crunchy apples and soaked almonds I have been fueling my body with, they have made for a satisfying and not-at-all-feeling-deprived long weekend of concentrated clean (but tasty) eating. ;-)  

Delish Squash Bisque
From The Beauty Detox Solution by Kimberly Synder
(Makes about 6 Servings)

1 medium acorn squash
1 Tbsp coconut oil (or vegetable broth)
2 garlic cloves. minced
1 large sweet onion, minced
1 Tbsp grated ginger
1/4-1/2 tsp sea salt, or to taste
1/4 tsp black pepper
3 celery stalks, cubed
2-3 carrots, cubed
2 cups water
1 cup unsweetened almond milk

Cut the acorn squash open, remove seeds, peel and cut flesh into 1-inch cubes. 

Heat the coconut oil or veggie broth in a large soup pot over medium heat. Lightly saute the garlic, then add the onion and grated ginger. Cook until onion is translucent, do not brown/overcook. Stir in salt and black pepper. 

Add the rest of the vegetables and gently cook over low heat until they begin to soften. Add water and cover, simmering about 30 minutes, until tender. Puree in blender or with immersion blender. Return soup to pot, add almond milk and cook through on low. Serve and enjoy. 

Roasted Red Pepper Soup
From The 3-Day Cleanse by Zoe Sakoutis & Erica Huss
(Makes 2 Servings)

1/4 cup raw cashews, soaked 1-2 hours
1/2 cup water
1/2 tsp sea salt
black pepper
3/4 tsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp agave
pinch cayenne
pinch red chili flakes
1 cup roasted red pepper
1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 large basil leaf, chopped

Blend all of the ingredients, except the basil, in a blender until smooth. Heat the mixture in a saucepan until slightly warmed. Pour into serving bowls, garnish with the fresh basil, and serve.   

'Souper Supper' (Cucumber, Celery & Dill Soup)
From Ani's 15-Day Fat Blast by Ani Phyo
(Makes 1 Pint/1 Serving)

1 cup cucumber, diced, about 1 whole
1 1/2 cup celery, chopped, about 2 ribs
1/2 cup avocado, about 1/2 whole
1/2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
2 Tbsp unpasteurized miso, any color
2 tsp fresh dill, or your favorite herb (or 1 tsp dry herbs)
1 to 2 cups filtered water, as desired
1/2 jalapeno pepper, or 1/4 tsp cayenne, or to taste (optional 'fat melter')

Place all ingredients, including pepper if using, into a high-speed blender. Blend until smooth. Serve and enjoy.

Note: Best enjoyed immediately, but soup will keep in an airtight container for one day in the fridge.  

Notes/Results: Three different but tasty soups. If I had to pick a favorite it would probably be the Roasted Red Pepper--the cashews give it a creaminess that tastes really decadent. The squash bisque also tastes rich and I liked that the carrot and squash were equally as present in the flavor. I did actually switch the steps listed for making the soup around a bit and start with cooking my onions, then adding the garlic and ginger about halfway through--cooking the garlic for that long seemed a little odd to me. The cucumber soup is deceptive--it is so fresh and cooling but then the jalapeno kicks in and leaves a nice little heat in the throat. I liked the richness the miso adds to the celery and cucumber. All of these go together easily and taste great--whether you are detoxing a little or just want a healthy bowl of soup. I would make them again.

The Delish Squash Bisque is my Week 11 dish for the 12 Weeks of Winter Squash Event hosted by my friends Heather and Joanne. Feel free to link up your winter squash dishes during the week at the linky below (when it goes live at midnight), or on any one of the other participating blogs.    

Two great soups and a salad await in the Souper Sundays kitchen this week--let's take a look.

Tigerfish of Teczcape--An Escape to Food is here with Vegan "Sausage", Kale and Potato Soup and says, "A vegetarian rendition of kale and sausage soup that I have always wanted to try cooking at home, but just waiting for the opportunity - the right time for sausages to appear in my kitchen. So it came the time that these vegan sausages chanced upon my house, so why not? The spiced "sausages" in the soup definitely bring warmth in a cold winter day. The addition of potatoes made this an easy one-dish meal with carbs, protein, fiber all in one."

Janet of The Taste Space is back this week with hearty Indian-Spiced Mung Bean Stew. She says, "I have been gravitating to easier meals and have not been cooking up as many dried beans from scratch lately. One solution to this problem is to use quick-cooking no-soaking needed beans, like lentils, anasazi and mung beans. Yes, mung beans. I am back on the mung bean bandwagon with great results. Simmer the mung beans directly with an assortment of veggies (kabocha squash, tomato, bell pepper and spinach here) with simple Indian spices: cumin, fenugreek and turmeric. The kabocha squash and mung beans melt into a deliciously creamy stew. A thick and hearty stew, perfect for the winter."

Finally Simona of Briciole shares this pretty Butter Lettuce Salad with Persimmon, Avocado and Almonds and says, "My current favorite good salad starts with butterhead lettuce (a.k.a. Boston or bibb lettuce), a balance of soft and crisp. It includes a Fuyu persimmon, whose firm flesh provides natural sweetness. Sliced almonds, lightly toasted, add a crunchy aromatic note. A ripe avocado, mashed with Meyer lemon juice and some sea salt, brings the ingredients together.

Thanks to Tigerfish, Janet and Simona for joining in this week. If you have a soup, salad, or sandwich that you would like to share, just click on the Souper Sundays logo on my sidebar for all of the details.

 12 Weeks of Winter Squash Event

Have a happy, healthy week!