Good Eats

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The holiday madness has captured me! Not in a bad sense. It’s only captured my time, which is why I have been a little absent here in the GLB.  Believe it or not, I’m not stressed for once over the shopping, baking, and making gifts. I’m enjoying the slow ride I’m taking till Christmas.  My attitude is that it will all get done – no rush. It almost makes me laugh to watch everyone driving around with there hands white-knuckled around the steering wheels getting mad that the person in front of them didn’t go the very second the light turned green. Or the disgruntled looks I see on peoples faces while waiting in lines. Or better yet, the attitudes of everyone from the stress. Chill out everyone! Its Christmas! Its a time of year to enjoy the christmas tunes, family, lots of good eating, and pretty lights all around. Seems like our society has made this holiday a materialistic one making everyone pressured to get gifts and rush against the holiday clock.  Enough about that, I’ve got to show you all my lovely eats I’ve had in the past week or two.  (sorry there’s a lot!)

Ok so one product I’m loving these days is Raw Reserve Greens Powder by Amazing Grass that I found in a health food store in NYC. It has everything I need in one powder. Its gluten free, vegan and raw. Plus it has 25 billion live Probiotics. It doesn’t taste all that bad either – score!

My boyfriend and I have dedicated Tuesdays as Taco Tuesdays! Its fun to plan dinner on a meal theme night. I was surprised at how tasty these were. 

Quinoa Taco’s 
I bought everything at Trader Joes – the shells, red quinoa, taco spice packet and all the fixins’. I even made my own sour cream from their dairy free cream cheese. (I mixed enough water and lime juice with the cheese to get it to right “sour cream” consistency. It was delicious.)

I’ve been craving warm breakfasts so one day I made gluten free pancakes with blueberries!! 

Fresh romaine salad with fermented ginger carrots, radish, cucumber and seasonings. 

I’ve been eating a lot of white rice lately (I know. not too nutritional but its a “safe food” for me, giving me no digestive upset.) I cooked up some bok-choy in a little sesame oil then added vegetable broth and chickpea miso with ginger, garlic and tamari and cooked in down into a stew like consistency. 
Then on another Taco Tuesday I made fish Taco’s. I have to say they were so tasty! Since most of you are Vegan I didn’t add pics of the fish but this pic is all the leftover fixins’ we had. Yellow rice, red cabbage, tomatoes, cilantro and lime. I made a delicious white sauce to go on top of tacos that I found here. I made it Vegan of course! This sauce was killer…so good!
As always, my good eats from Quintessence, NYC. (my favorite Raw restaurant)
Peter’s Pot Soup
Blended tomato, yellow pepper, and cucumber soup, enriched with dulse, basil and a dash of propolis that boosts the body’s healing power. Talk about nutritious!

Baby arugula, sunflower sprouts, mixed baby sprouts, goji berries and cherry tomato tossed with a sweet-spiced fig cardamom dressing topped with caramelized walnuts.
I treated myself to a Teechino Cappuccino with fresh nut milk and spices- I got the Vanilla flavor. Teechino is a great coffee alternative I’ve been enjoying lately.  

I’ve been totally digging this new brand of Kombucha and was so excited to see this Blue-Green Envy flavor that has green algae in it!

My friend Lauren inspired me when she posted something similar on her blog. Sometimes simple is so much better. I boiled rice and quinoa in water with one veggie bouillon cube. Then right before serving I add chopped kale to the pot to let wilt just a little. Added pepper, Herbamare, Dulse flakes and the KEY to this dish is lots of poultry seasoning (no worries, there is no chicken in this mix of spices). To me, it gives it a nice hearty flavor. Then I top with avocado. Ohhh how I love this dish….simple, satisfying and quick to make. 
and last but not least….
I have been trying to increase my intake of Chlorella so I made a fresh batch of my Green Energy Bars.

Until next time, stay well.
xo
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L-Glutamine for Crohn’s

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You have probably heard of L-Glutamine being used by bodybuilders to help maintain muscle mass. It can provide a significant source of energy for the entire body. It prevents your muscles from being sore after a hard workout and prevents further damage to muscle tissues and fibers. Did you know it can also play a similar role in helping the fibers of your intestines?

Unlike other inflammatory bowel diseases, Crohn’s causes each layer of the intestine to be effected. Amino acids are generally very important nutrition-wise but it can also help in treating certain diseases. Crohn’s can be helped by dietary modifications and with the added bonus of L-Glutamine to your daily consumption, it may help things heal up even more.

L-Glutamine is a component used to make proteins. It has been recognized as the second most important fuel for the cells lining your colon and helps clear out waste through the kidney and liverYour body produces enough glutamine to function normally but having an auto-immune disease causes stress on your body, which raises the demand for this protein making component. Dietary sources of glutamine can come from beef, chicken, milk, fish, eggs, pork, oats and avocados, raw spinach, parsley, and cabbage…but since I do not eat meat, eggs or dairy,  I look for supplemental versions to increase the source of glutamine in my body.

So how does it help Crohn’s?

It can help protect the mucosa lining of the intestine. It works as a fuel for the cells lining the intestine and promotes a healthy digestive tract. Taking a glutamine supplement may help the intestinal walls repair more rapidly, which in turn leads to better nutritional absorption.

The mucosal lining of the intestine is the most dynamic collection of cells in the body. The entire lining is replaced every 3-6 days, including the immune cells resident in it. (L-glutamine is the main fuel). The  replacement rate takes a lot of fuel, and if there is insufficient L-glutamine available, gaps in the mucosal barrier and in the intestinal walls themselves form. The intestinal walls become thin and ulcers and bacteria can develop. When this bacteria penetrates into the lining and other surrounding tissues, this is known as “leaky gut”. The combination of broken down mucosal barriers, weak intestinal walls and reduced numbers and activity of immune cells allows permeation of pathogens, and allergy-causing particles, which then can leak into the bloodstream. (where it doesn’t belong!)

How much to take?

one to two teaspoons per day.

I add one teaspoon to my smoothies in the morning!
You can purchase L-Glutamine at any vitamin shop in powder or pill form. (I like the powder form to add to drinks)  This is a product I am interested in using. Someone posted it as being good and I know this company is pretty reputable. It is chock-full of goodies for the digestive tract and contains a good amount of L-Glutamine. I’m putting it on my wish-list. 
Now, you may not see any noticeable effects after taking the glutamine but for me its just one of those, why not/couldn’t hurt things. I’ve read enough information on the subject that makes me believe it can play a good role in my healing. I’m all about healing that gut! 
Please read these rare side effects and speak to your doctor before starting any supplemental program.

*Note: Beware that L-glutamine will most likely reduce diarrhea and could possibly cause constipation. 

Lasagna Soup…mmmm.

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I found this amazing looking recipe online a few weeks ago. I could not wait to make it for my boyfriend and attempt to make it Vegan for myself. It turned out so good. Not only did the original version get rave reviews from my man, but my Vegan friends came over for dinner that night and loved the Vegan version. I served it with toasted garlic baguette slices. This is definitely going in my keeper binder of recipes. 
Lasagna Soup
2 tsp olive oil
1 lb of soy sausage crumbles*
1 cup chopped onion
2 garlic cloves
2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
2 Tbls tomato paste
1 28-oz can fire roasted diced tomatoes
2 bay leaves
6 cups veggie broth
Gluten-free lasagna noodles
chopped basil for garnish
salt & pepper to taste



Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add sausage crumbles, and brown for about 5 minutes. Add onions and cook until softened about 6 minutes. Add garlic, oregano and red pepper flakes. Cook for one minute. Add tomato paste and stir well to incorporate. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes.
Add diced tomatoes, bay leaves and veggie broth. Stir to combine. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes.  
While the soup cooks, make the cheesy yum (below) and the pasta. Cook pasta according to package and set aside. (I broke up the lasagna into bite size pieces before cooking)
To serve the soup, place a dallop of cheezy yum in bottom of bowl, add noodles and ladle hot soup over top. 

Garnish with chopped basil. 


for the cheezy yum:
You can use a store bought dairy-free ricotta cheese alternative or make your own out of tofu (recipe here).
Or use my recipe for:
 Cashew Basil Cheeze 
2 cups cashews, soaked 4 hours
juice of one lemon
salt & freshly ground pepper
1 tsp thyme
handful of fresh basil, roughly chopped
1 pinch of cayenne pepper
2 tbls nutritional yeast
1 tsp garlic powder or 1 garlic clove
few drizzles of olive oil
Blend all the ingredients in a food processor until a creamy, yet fluffy consistency forms. Adjust seasoning to taste.
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*You can use any brand of sausage alternative you want but please note most of them have wheat in them. Here is a great recipe for Tempeh Sausage Crumbles.
These are the lasagna noodles I used:
They held their shape very well, were not gummy and to me tasted just like regular noodles. 
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Simple Garlic Ginger Miso Soup
32-oz Veggie Broth
1/3 c Miso
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 package of tofu*
1/4 cup dried wakame
1 piece of kombu
1/4 tsp sesame oil
Add vegetable broth to a medium pot with the piece of kombu and bring to a boil. Slice tofu into cubes and add to pot along with all other ingredients but the miso. Let simmer on low for 20 minutes. Right before serving add miso and stir until dissolved. 
I love the traditional garnish of green onions but to change it up I served mine with fermented ginger carrots on top. Adds crunch and an extra zesty ginger flavor to the soup.  
*I am very excited that Trader Joes now carries Organic Sprouted Extra-Firm Tofu!
Sprouted tofu–with its easier digestion, higher levels of protein, calcium, iron, and omega-3 fats–is a great alternative to regular tofu. 

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Miso Facts
Did you know?
  • Consuming Miso soup 3-4 times a week can have a very positive effect on your health.
  • Miso increases digestive enzymes by creating the environment in the intestines for the good bacteria to thrive.
  • It’s especially beneficial to consume miso in the morning, it gets the intestines and stomach revved up and ready to work; for a day of breaking down, absorbing, and eliminating all we eat.
  • Miso increases digestion and absorption, it helps in remedying irritable bowel syndrome, constipation, and diarrhea.
  • Miso contains living enzymes that aid digestion & strengthen the blood.
  • According to legend, miso was a gift from the gods to ensure humanity’s health, longevity, and happiness.
  • Helps maintain nutritional balance – full of nutrients, beneficial bacteria and enzymes, miso provides: protein, vitamin B12, vitamin B2, vitamin E, vitamin K, tryptophan, choline, dietary fiber, linoleic acid and lecithin.
  • Antiviral — miso is very alkalizing and strengthening to the immune system helping to combat a viral infection.