It's well-known that sugar fuels inflammation and inflammation is the root cause of all chronic disease. Autoimmune diseases are chronic in nature and one of the keys to recovery from painful symptoms is nutrition. I've always had a sweet tooth, but since learning how to manage my autoimmune disease, I vary rarely consume added sugar, and I don't consume dairy other than butter. I don't miss sugar, milk, cheese, or yogurt, but if I'm honest, I do miss ice cream at times. My husband knows of my love of ice cream, so when he came across an article about hummus "milkshakes," he was quick to share. I was somewhat skeptical just from the name. Traditional hummus has garlic, olive oil, and tahini - none of which seems appetizing in the form of a milkshake. But we gave it a try, and it's UNBELIEVABLE!
At this point in my autoimmune recovery, I could probably have a small milks...
We host Thanksgiving dinner at our house and are in charge of the turkey. This year we deep fried a whole organic turkey and I made 2 turkey breasts in the crock-pot. They were both delicious, but the amount we had leftover was overwhelming! So, I spent a couple of hours today making some awesome healthy turkey recipes.
To maximize my time in the kitchen, I started with TURKEY CHILI.
1 yellow onion chopped
2 Tbsp Olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
14.5 oz can of beans, drained
2 cups water
2 Tbsp chipotle chili powder
1/2 tsp cumin
1 drop Young Living oregano essential oil (or 1/2 tsp dried oregano)
1/2 tsp paprika
14.5 oz can fire roasted tomatoes
28 oz can crushed tomatoes
1 lb cooked turkey
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1. Add olive oil to a stock pot and cook onion and garlic until softened.
2. Add in remaining ingredients and bring to a boil, simmer on low for 20 minutes.
Tip: I put my turkey chunks in the food processor, however I...
Holidays can be challenging if you're trying to create a healthy lifestyle for yourself. At this time last year, I was following a full on elimination diet. I was so miserable with symptoms that I didn't even care if I missed out on all the holiday treats. After it was all said and done, I realized I didn't miss out on anything, I enjoyed delicious food (elimination diet compliant) and spent time with my family. Most of my previous Thanksgiving holidays were spent eating, and eating, and eating! Most people spend quite some time sitting on the couch too. But, one unhealthy day can lead to 2, and then the whole weekend and then you're totally off track until January when you will start anew. If this is your holiday routine, think about mixing it up this year!
Holiday meals can derail any healthy eating plan and when you consider left overs, it can go on for days. People tend to gain 5-10 pounds around this season and most don’t lose that weight b...
November is National Diabetes Month. There’s no better time to discuss the facts about diabetes than right before the holidays! Diabetes is a chronic disease that can be prevented and actually reversed with lifestyle modification, with the exception of Type 1 diabetes, which is an autoimmune condition. Diabetes occurs when your pancreas can no longer keep up with your demand for insulin. Insulin is the hormone that keeps your blood glucose (sugar) in check. Your blood glucose level can be affected in numerous ways, but is mostly related to the foods you eat and your lifestyle. Over 30 million Americans have diabetes, but there are also a startling number of people who are unaware that they have prediabetes. If left untreated or unmanaged, diabetes can lead to numerous complications such as kidney disease, heart disease, blindness, amputation, cognitive impairment, stroke and nerve damage.
I can't remember where I heard that title, but it struck me as perfect when thinking about lifestyle change. We humans are very set in our ways. We tend to create a lifestyle and stick with what we know, especially as we get older. Often times though, our lifestyle choices lead us down the path to chronic disease, mental health issues, and decreased quality of life.
It may be difficult to believe, but our genetics are only responsible for about 25% of what happens to us, the other 75% is dependent on how we live our lives. Dr. Jeffrey Bland reminds us that "inherited does not mean inevitable". This is great news! It means we each have the power to create a healthy future. For some reason though we keep moving on our original path despite seeing the warning signs ahead. Why is it so difficult to make lifestyle changes?
October 7-13, 2018 is National Mental Illness Awareness Week. Hippocrates said, “it is more important to know what sort of person has a disease than to know what sort of disease a person has.” In other words, we have to look at everyone as a unique individual and provide care that is specific to that person. It is not enough to just know that someone has symptoms of depression, schizophrenia, adhd, anxiety, or bipolar disorder, we must find the root cause of those symptoms and adjust our treatment based on what will help that specific individual manage symptoms and have an awesome quality of life! There is no one size fits all model when it comes to managing mental health disorders.
The main dysfunction in psychiatric disorders is miscommunication at some level. For example, there may be a nutrient deficiency, food intolerance or allergy, dysbiosis, a gene variant, or a hormone imbalance involved in the root cause of a...
I've been a registered dietitian for 17 years, and have just been introduced to functional nutrition over the past year after struggling with my own autoimmune disease. In fact, most of the dietitians specializing in functional nutrition have found themselves on this path because they have/had some sort of medical issue that couldn't be healed with conventional medicine. I personally spent 15 years trying to improve my quality of life and heal my autoimmune disease with conventional medicine, without any measurable result. Since learning about the functional medicine/nutrition movement, my life has been forever changed.
So, what is functional nutrition? It's not just about food! It's all about determining the root causes of your symptoms and developing a comprehensive plan to address the health of your entire body. In my case, I had significant digestive issues, joint pain, swelling, headaches, overwhelmin...
I am guilty of, at one time, claiming that nutritional supplements were a waste of money. I've said more than once that using supplements is of no benefit and just leads to expensive urine. However, that was before I had a complete understanding of the critical role that nutritional supplements can play in disease prevention and reversal, not to mention quality of life.
When thinking about nutritional supplements there are several things to consider:
1. Our recommended dietary intakes are based on preventing all out nutrient deficiency, scurvy (Vitamin C) or rickets (Vitamin D) for example. But, preventing an all-out nutrient deficiency is completely different than maximizing nutrient intake. Nutrient needs can't be placed in only two categories such as deficiency or normal, they exist on a continuum: deficiency to insufficiency to normal to optimal to toxic. Optimal nutrient intake should always be the g...
When you're first diagnosed with a chronic disease, or have been told you need to make some lifestyle changes or you'll develop a chronic disease, it can be overwhelming. Where do you start? And, how do you know what to focus on first?
I struggled with this when trying to manage my autoimmune disease. I'm a healthcare professional and I was still confused. Not until I began researching functional medicine/nutrition, did I really understand how to prioritize and get myself feeling better every day. The steps below can get you going in the right direction:
Step 1: Believe that most chronic diseases can be reversed with nutrition and lifestyle changes. It has been proven over and over and over. People are curing themselves every day, just by making healthy choices for themselves. Just believing your situation can be cured is half the battle!
Step 2: Find a functional medicine/nutrition practitioner. A...
Snacking can definitely be a part of your healthy meal plan and I encourage some healthy snacks every day! When changing your lifestyle, you can often feel deprived, but one to three snacks daily can be included as long as you make healthy choices, watch your portions, and avoid unplanned snacking. Unfortunately, we are surrounded by food, and not always the healthiest food. My full-time job is in healthcare and there seems to be an abundance of snack foods in every facility. Food is in our faces all day: from donuts, cookies, chips, cakes and then the vending machines loaded with unhealthy options - we are set up to fail. Try to think about how many times you just pick up a cookie here or there, a brownie, or candy bar. Those calories add up over time and can lead to significant weight gain. However, if you plan your snack time, bring your own healthy snacks, and stick with your plan, you'll be much more successful in reaching and mainta...