Immunity Shots

holistic vitae, Steph Matthews, Huffington, Post, lemon, ginger, immunity, sickness, illness, sick, juice, detox, juicing, lemon ginger, sore throat, stress relief, smoothie, smoothies, cinnamon, organic, gluten free, dairy free, vegetarian, vegetables, five a day, healthy, vegan, raw, raw vegan, healthy food, holistic nutrition, , yoga girl, Deliciously Ella, madeleine shaw, nutrition, health, holistic, healthy living, fresh, plant based, plant power

Anyone who’s ever wandered into a juice shop before or maybe even perhaps if your local grocery store has caught on, you may have come across juice shots. Usually they are sold as a potent dose of nutrients in a quick, easy to toss back shot. I remember when wheatgrass shots used to be the only variety kicking about. Nowadays, there are all sorts of different kinds being touted for a variety of ailments.

I’ve been experimenting with lemon ginger variations myself and I absolutely love them for this time of the year. They’re really great to have on hand to keep you feeling well when everyone else around you begins to feel under the weather from the changing temperatures.

I’ve included a couple of extras I also like to add to mine depending on if there’s something specific to target.

Ginger is wonderfully warming and aromatic and helps with cold and flus by promoting detoxification and healthy sweating. It’s also great for the gastrointestinal tract, helping to reduce nausea and upset stomach. Ginger is also a powerful anti-inflammatory making it beneficial for aches and pains of the muscles and joints.

Lemons are very alkalizing for the body. They contain a variety of antioxidants, particularly Vitamin C, which is one of the most important we can find to maintain a healthy immune system. You can try adding half a lemon to warm water in the morning upon rising to wake up your digestion and cleanse the system of toxins.

Together, these two make a potent spicy dose that feels like you’re literally kicking any bugs lurking around right out of your body! Experiment a bit to find the right combination of the ingredients for your ideal shot.

Makes approx. ¼ cup

Ingredients

1 lemon
1 thumb-size piece of fresh ginger

Optional:
2-3 drops of oregano oil (colds/flu)
4-5 drops of grapefruit seed extract (candida/parasites)
1-2 cm piece of fresh turmeric (anti-inflammatory boost)

Directions 

If using organic ingredients, you may choose to leave the skin on. Otherwise, peel away from both the lemon and ginger then juice through a juicer. Enjoy straight away for the best benefits or keep stored in the fridge for up to 3 days.

Advertisements

Adaptogenic Chaga Smoothie

holistic vitae, Steph Matthews, chaga, chaga smoothie, adaptogen, hormones, stress relief, smoothie, smoothies, cinnamon, coconut, breakfast, organic, gluten free, dairy free, vegetarian, vegetables, five a day, healthy, vegan, raw, raw vegan, healthy food, holistic nutrition, Organic September, yoga girl, deliciously ella, madeleine shaw, nutrition, health, holistic, healthy living, fresh, plant based, plant powerThis is a delicious smoothie using the balancing action of the adaptogenic chaga mushroom.

Chaga is a medicinal mushroom along the same lines as Reishi, Shiitake, and Cordyceps, amongst many others. It acts as an antioxidant, antiviral, anti-inflammatory, has anti-cancer properties, and helps to support the immune system. It’s wonderful for supporting the body at this time of year when we begin to transition from summer into fall and the colder months.

When you brew this hearty tough mushroom, you wind up with a wonderful tea that nourishes your organs and your glands. Being an adaptogen, this does exactly what it says: it helps our bodies “adapt” to our inward and outward biological, chemical, and physical environments. Adaptogens also keep our stress hormones in check, preventing us from releasing more than we need in times of crisis and our fight or flight mode. Overall, adaptogens provide a balancing and calming effect on the whole body, especially the nervous and endocrine systems, allowing us to cope with the things life throws our way.

Special care should always be taken when harvesting this mushroom. It’s always best to ensure that wherever you are purchasing your Chaga from, the company maintains practices that keep parts of the mushroom behind so the spores can repopulate and it may grow again.

While you can just easily sip this as a warm or cold tea or make a delicious hot cocoa with it, adding it as the liquid base to your smoothie gives you a great dose of the little fungi too! Paired with raw cacao and plant-based protein it becomes a wholesome smoothie to optimally support your body.

Serves 1

Ingredients

1 cup cold brewed chaga tea
1/2 cup coconut milk
1 Medjool date
3 tbsp. hemp hearts
1 heaping tbsp. raw cacao powder
Pinch of Himalayan sea salt

Optional: 1 tsp. maca, pinch of cinnamon

Directions

Add all ingredients to a high speed blender and blend until smooth. Enjoy!

Spring Rice Wraps

 spring, recipes, rice wraps, Asian food, Asian fusion, gluten free, dairy free, vegetarian, vegetables, five a day, healthy, vegan, raw, raw vegan, healthy food, holistic nutrition, yoga girl, deliciously ella, madeleine shaw, nutrition, health, healthy living, fresh, herbs, plant basedThe changing of the seasons always pinpoints a change in our eating habits. There’s an increase in fresh and light foods from the heavy and hearty ones that kept us warm through the cold months.

I was very ambitious back in March making these for lunch on an almost daily basis thinking spring was well and truly here. Of course I was misled by the sunnier mornings and the rising temperatures were only fleeting.

Now I think I am safe in saying that spring seems to be making itself known and these rice wraps are a great transition into the lighter side of things.

There’s no exact measurement for the amount of ingredients here; mix and match whatever veggies you like, add some sprouts, rice noodles, shrimp, different herbs, etc. The beauty of these is using what you have on hand or changing it up with what’s in season for different colours, flavours, and textures.

I made these with fresh basil, cucumber, carrot, zucchini, chopped lettuce, and rice noodles, sprinkling in some sesame seeds and hemp hearts. Get creative by changing up the veggies, spiralizing some and chopping others.

Instead of using peanut butter, I’ve made an almond butter satay sauce with a spicy hit that really takes these up a notch! spring, recipes, rice wraps, Asian food, Asian fusion, gluten free, dairy free, vegetarian, vegetables, five a day, healthy, vegan, raw, raw vegan, healthy food, holistic nutrition, yoga girl, deliciously ella, madeleine shaw, nutrition, health, healthy living, fresh, herbs, plant basedIngredients:

Rice wraps

Variety of veggies, chopped into “matchsticks”- red pepper, cucumber, carrot, zucchini, greens, etc.

Vermicelli

Fresh herbs- basil, parsley, coriander

Sesame seeds

Hemp hearts

2 tbsp. almond butter

1 tbsp. maple syrup

1 lime, juice and zest

1 tsp. tamari

1 clove of garlic, minced

Splash of water- to thin as needed

Optional– chopped red chilli, chopped green onion

Directions

  1. If using vermicelli, boil some water to pour over desired amount and set aside for allotted time until softened.
  1. Chop your veggies into matchsticks, and if using, spiralize your zucchini.
  1. In a small bowl, whisk together almond butter, maple syrup, tamari, lime, and garlic. Add water if needed to slightly thin the sauce.
  1. Assemble your wraps: Pour a couple of tablespoons of water onto a large plate. Taking a rice wrap, dip it into the water until every part has been coated with the water. Do this for about 25 seconds then lay onto a chopping board.
  1. Sprinkle sesame seeds, hemp seeds across the wrap. Layer a couple of leaves of basil in the centre then add the veggies you like, noodles, anything you’re using to fill.
  1. Start from the bottom of the wrap, roll away from you and fold over the filling. Tuck each of the sides in and continue to roll until you have a wrap.
  1. Repeat with the rest of your ingredients and serve with the almond satay sauce.

 spring, recipes, rice wraps, Asian food, Asian fusion, gluten free, dairy free, vegetarian, vegetables, five a day, healthy, vegan, raw, raw vegan, healthy food, holistic nutrition, yoga girl, deliciously ella, madeleine shaw, nutrition, health, healthy living, fresh, herbs, plant based

 

The Magic of Magnesium

organic, natural remedies, magnesium, minerals, epsom salts, relaxation, stress relief, stress management, holistic, holistic health, health, wellness, healthy, healthy lifestyle, healthy livingOne of the things I was most looking forward to with finally studying holistic nutrition was delving into the solid facts about the things I have read.

It’s easy to do a quick Google search about a certain vitamin or easily become confused about whether fats or healthy or not with all the information floating around out there but now I’m truly learning what this is all about. The dots are beginning to connect as knowledge flows through my classes into everyday life.

One of the first classes I took was an introductory course into the fundamentals of nutrition. This was a great class led by a great teacher full of outside the box info on holistic health and gave a general overview of the basics of nutrition. Towards the end, we finally covered vitamins and minerals which I think are always a bit confusing as there’s so much out there to know. How many times have you gone to a health food shop only to leave feeling more overwhelmed than before you arrived?

I want to highlight some of these on here and I wanted the first one to be one of my favourite minerals: Magnesium.

There’s good reason as to why I love magnesium so much. It’s definitely worked its magic on my classmates and myself during stress-y periods of constant assignments, tests, and exams. How does magnesium do this exactly?

Magnesium is one in the top three minerals that we tend to be deficient in (alongside iron and zinc). In today’s modern world, it’s hard to get enough of this from our soil alone as it’s very often depleted due to current farming practices. We also become deleted in this mineral by our fast paced lifestyles fuelled by caffeine and excess sugar.

One way to make sure you’re getting what you can from a food source is to ensure you’re purchasing organic. Organic food comes from soil that is treated without the use of chemical fertilizers leaving you with more of the nutrients intact for your body to receive. A few sources to mention include organic brown rice, almonds, spinach, and chard.

Magnesium is a natural relaxant and tranquilizer that helps to alleviate muscle spasms and tension. It’s also helpful in easing muscle cramps, PMS symptoms, anxiety, fatigue, insomnia, as a laxative, reducing stress, and as a prevention and treatment for heart attacks and heart disease. Just to name a few.

When looking for a magnesium supplement, you’ll most often come across either:

  • Magnesium Citrate (useful as a laxative)
  • Magnesium Malate (useful for fibromyalgia & muscle aches)
  • Magnesium Oxide (not as readily absorbed as the others)
  • Magnesium Bisglycinate (this is the newest of the bunch with the highest absorption)

It’s best to go for a complex (a blend of them all) this way you ensure you’re getting a well-rounded formula.

My favourite way of getting more magnesium is actually through Epsom salt baths and magnesium spray. This is a really gentle way to ease into the benefits of this wonderful mineral.

I find this is a great way to unwind in the evening: Have a bath filled with Epsom salts (I use minimum 2 cups) then spray the body while skin is still damp with magnesium spray so everything absorbs into your system for a rested and peaceful sleep.

It truly does work wonders and I can say this as anyone who I’ve recommended this to have seen a huge improvement and they notice the difference when they go without.

How do you know if you’re deficient and how much should you supplement? If you’re consuming magnesium tablets, you can start with 200mg increasing until you reach bowel tolerance. You’ll know when this is!

I find it best to take this in the evening prior to sleep to help with the relaxing effect.

Magnesium truly is a magic mineral that I encourage everyone to try out and incorporate into his or her everyday life.

 

 

 

Raw Vegan Carrot Cake Bites

Easter, Easter baking, carrot cake, cinnamon, vanilla, cashew, cashew cheese, essential fatty acids, healthy fats, omega 3, omega 6, dairy free frosting, raw, vegan, raw vegan, plant based, whole foods, holistic nutrition, coconut sugar, refined sugar free, homemade, recipes, dairy free, gluten free, healthy, health bloggers, food blogSpring hasn’t exactly quite sprung but that hasn’t stopped me from embracing the lighter side of things and these raw vegan carrot cake bites are a total treat! Incredibly easy to put together, they take no time at all and are as delicious as a freshly baked carrot cake.

The difference in these though is that they are considerably a much more healthier alternative. A little note on using organic carrots:

Choosing organic products means better health benefits for you and the environment around you. The soil our food grows in these days is seriously lacking nutrients and is depleted by the use of different pesticides and herbicides as well as conventional farming practices. I don’t know about you but I like my carrots to taste the way carrots are meant to and know that they’ve grown as nature has intended them to.

Organic carrots make up the bulk of this recipe giving you a dose of Vitamin A,  an antioxidant that maintains our vision and healthy skin. They also contain Medjool dates for added sweetness and a dose of fiber, and walnuts which have essential fatty acids. These are the kind of healthy fats we can’t make ourselves but that are necessary in supporting the body’s hormone production, reducing inflammation, and aiding in the proper development and function of our brain and nervous system (to name a slight few reasons as to why they are essential). Not to mention, a wicked raw cashew “cream-cheese” frosting to drizzle over as a final touch. I mean…

You can put them together this Easter weekend, or make them as part of your food prep for the week ahead as a tasty snack.

Makes 18-20 balls

Ingredients:

For the carrot cake bites:

4 organic carrots

1 1/2 cups of walnuts

4-6 Medjool dates- (depending on your sweet tooth)

1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut

½ tsp. vanilla

¼ tsp. cinnamon

¼ tsp. ginger or freshly grated (add a little more with fresh)

Pinch of sea salt

Easter, Easter baking, carrot cake, cinnamon, vanilla, cashew, cashew cheese, essential fatty acids, healthy fats, omega 3, omega 6, dairy free frosting, raw, vegan, raw vegan, plant based, whole foods, holistic nutrition, coconut sugar, refined sugar free, homemade, recipes, dairy free, gluten free, healthy, health bloggers, food blogFor the cashew “cream-cheese” drizzle:

1 cup of cashews, soaked for 4 hours or overnight

6-8 tbsp. of coconut milk (depending on how thick or thin you want the drizzle)

1 tbsp. maple syrup

1 tsp. of vanilla

Juice of ½ lemon

Pinch of sea salt

Directions:

  1. In a food processor, add about ¼ cup of the walnuts, pulse until crumbly then set aside to roll the balls into later. Add the carrots and the rest of the walnuts and pulse again until fine.
  1. Set aside about ¼ cup of the shredded coconut then add the rest along with the dates, vanilla, cinnamon, ginger, and salt and pulse to combine everything.
  1. Take ½ tbsp. amounts of the mixture, roll into balls then alternate coating them in the ground walnuts or shredded coconut until covered. Place on a lined baking tray then pop them into the fridge.
  1. Make the cashew cream cheese. Drain and rinse the cashews then add to a high- speed blender with a few tablespoons of the coconut milk. Add the maple syrup, vanilla, lemon juice, and salt and blend until smooth. Depending on how thick the mixture is, add more coconut milk, tablespoon by tablespoon until desired consistency is reached.
  1. Drizzle the carrot cake bites with the cashew cream cheese and enjoy!

Easter, Easter baking, carrot cake, cinnamon, vanilla, cashew, cashew cheese, essential fatty acids, omega 3, omega 6, healthy fats, dairy free frosting, raw, vegan, raw vegan, plant based, whole foods, holistic nutrition, coconut sugar, refined sugar free, homemade, recipes, dairy free, gluten free, healthy, health bloggers, food blog

 

 

 

 

 

Pumpkin Gnocchi With Rosemary & Chili

meatfree, meatfree monday, meatless monday, easy pasta recipe, recipes, gluten free, dairy free, vegan, gluten free pasta recipes, rosemary, thyme, fresh herbs, pasta recipes, dinner recipes, organic, pumpkin, gnocchi, gluten free gnocchi, chili, chilli, spicy pastaThis is the perfect recipe for cold, cozy, winter evenings!

I’ve been making this at least once a week since I started having it. These pumpkin gnocchi are so moreish and simple to make. They start off a little tedious but once you get the hang of them, they really are quick to have ready.

I know pumpkin is often paired with sage and if you like that, feel free to substitute that for the herb side of things. I’m not a huge fan and really love rosemary so I add that instead. Thyme is another great choice, or mix them together! Also, you can easily use coconut oil and/or butter to pan-fry these in after they’ve been cooked.

If you’re feeling like something sumptuous and carb-y, these should do the trick!

meatfree, meatfree monday, meatless monday, easy pasta recipe, recipes, gluten free, dairy free, vegan, gluten free pasta recipes, rosemary, thyme, fresh herbs, pasta recipes, dinner recipes, organic, pumpkin, gnocchi, gluten free gnocchi, chili, chilli, spicy pastaServes 2-3

Ingredients:

1 egg

1 cup pumpkin (either canned, preferably organic, or fresh)

½ cup buckwheat flour

¾ cup brown rice flour

¼ tsp. turmeric

¼ tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. baking powder

1-2 tbsp. coconut oil and/or butter

1 clove of garlic

Freshly ground black pepper

Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg

Pinch of chili flakes

Fresh herbs- rosemary, thyme, sage, etc.

Directions:

  1. In a large bowl, mix together the egg, pumpkin, flours, turmeric, nutmeg, and salt and pepper.
  1. Sprinkle flour across a clean surface and taking small amounts of the dough, roll out in a long strip about 1-1 ½ cm. thick (You may need to add more flour here, just be careful not to add too much, you still want the dough light and fluffy) Cutting across the length of the strip, cut pieces about an inch big.
  1. Using the back of a fork, with the prongs facing down, roll the cut sides of each piece of gnocchi together. Roll back again if necessary to form the pasta shape. Repeat until all the gnocchi is made.
  1. Put a large pot of salted water on to boil. When it’s ready, add the gnocchi to the water and give it a stir. When the gnocchi comes to the surface of the pot, it’s ready. Drain and rinse and set aside.
  1. In a frying pan, add the coconut oil/butter. As it melts, smash the garlic clove and add to the pan. Take your herbs and toss them in either whole or chopped finely, as much or as little as you like.
  1. Toss the gnocchi in the frying pan in the herbs and oil. Season to taste. Plate up a serving and top with the chili flakes and extra pepper.