Archive for October 30, 2013

Benefits of Tumeric

Tumerica TumericYou may notice that I use a lot of tumeric in my recipes.  It’s true.  I use it so much because it is a potent medicine that has long been used in by the Chinese and Indian cultures.  According to the School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, extensive studies in last twenty years suggest that curcumin contains a broad range of anti-inflammatory, anticancer, antiviral, anti-amyloid (amyloid is a starch-like protein which is deposited in the liver, kidneys, spleen, or other tissues in certain diseases), antiarthritic and antioxidant properties.

The Journal of the American Chemical Society reports that tumeric contains a broad range of antioxidant, antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal, anticarginogenic (An anticarcinogen is any chemical which reduces the occurrence of cancers, reduces the severity of cancers that do occur, or acts against cancers that do occur, based on evidence from in vitro studies, animal models, epidemiological studies and/or clinical studies), antimutagenic (in genetics, a mutagen is a physical or chemical agent that changes the genetic material, usually DNA, of an organism and thus increases the frequency of mutations above the natural background level. As many mutations cause cancer, mutagens are therefore also likely to be carcinogens) and anti-inflammatory properties.

Studies have linked lower rates of prostate cancer, breast cancer, lung cancer and colon cancer have been linked to tumeric or it’s compound, curcumin.  Circumin has even been shown to prevent tumors from forming in laboratory experiments.

Rich in niacin, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Vitamin K, sodium, potassium, calcium, magnesium, copper, iron and zinc; tumeric is also widely know as an immunity booster and has been studied in treating or preventing a wide variety of conditions, including Inflammatory Bowel Disease, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Cystic Fibrosis, Cancer, and even High Cholesterol.  Tumeric is also a well known liver tonic.  In fact, an extract from tumeric, circumen, repaired and regenerated liver tissues of diabetic groups in this study.

As you can see, there are many, many reasons to make tumeric a regular part of your diet!  The benefits of this medicinal food can be received by eating the fresh root or by adding the spice to your meals.  To me, it is virtually flavorless but packs a huge nutritional and medicinal punch to my meals.

What’s more, turmeric may kill liver cancer:

“What may be even more remarkable is the accumulating research on the anti-liver cancer properties of turmeric (and curcumin). The GreenMedInfo.com has 26 preclinical studies showing it kills liver cancer cells and tumors, including one case study involving a 6-month old infant with a life-threatening liver vascular tumor (hemangioendothelioma) who was reported treated successfully with a dietary supplement of curcumin, with 6-year follow-up.

One of the most remarkable facts about turmeric as a potential drug and chemotherapy alternative is its exceptionally high margin of safety. A 2001 study in cancer patients reported that quantities of curcumin up to 8 g, administered per day for three months, were not toxic and resulted in significant anti-cancer properties in a number of those treated. Considering that turmeric is only 3-4% curcumin by weight, this implies that a larger quantity of turmeric can be consumed safely, as well.”

Here are a few recipes showing you how simple it is to incorporate tumeric into a soup, or check out my recipe page.  Happy Healing! <3

Spicy Vegetable Soup

Spicy Cabbage Soup

Baby Corn & Sprout Soup

 

In Love & Gratitude,

Jodi

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Baby Corn & Sprout Soup

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Hello beautiful people!  Here is the latest creation that I made last night.  A cinch to prepare, oh so delicious, and good for you, too!  Notice all the colors in this soup.  How healthy is that?!  This was a hit with the roommates 🙂

INGREDIENTS:

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INGREDIENTS B
2 Red Bell Peppers, diced
1 Anaheim Pepper, diced finely
1 Small Onion, diced
6 Cloves Garlic, sliced
6 Baby Corn, sliced
3 Small Carrots, chopped
1 yellow squash, chopped
1 c. Sprouts (I used Horse Gram Sprouts)
1/2 c. Fenugreek Sprouts (optional – not pictured)
1 Potato (Optional, I didn’t use the potato and the soup was perfect without it)

INGREDIENTS A IMG_7630
2 Tbsp Coconut or Olive Oil
3 Tbsp Ghee (for flavor and richness)
1/8 Tsp Red Chili Pepper (Optional)
2+ Tsp Tumeric
1/2-1 Tsp Mustard Seed
1 Tsp Garlic Ginger Paste

INGREDIENTS C
Water or vegetable broth – Enough to cover the veggies and make it into a soup, ha!

INGREDIENTS D
1/4 c. Tomato Puree (optional)
2 Vegetable Bouillon Cubes (omit if you used vegetable broth)
2 tsp Himalayan Sea Salt
1/2 Tsp White Pepper
2 tsp Lemon Pepper
1 tsp Rosemary
1 tsp Oregano
1 tsp Thyme
1 tsp All Purpose Seasoning (Ingredients: Salt, Onion, garlic, allspice, celery seed, chili,
black pepper, sugar, coriander, ginger,
thyme, basil, oregano)

 

DIRECTIONS

1.  Heat oil in pan, then add “Ingredients A”.

2.  Mix well, then add “Ingredients B”.  Cook until half way tender (I usually add the
italicized ingredients first and cook them until half way tender, then add the rest)

3.  Pour enough water to cover the veggies and go about two inches above them (enough to make it a soup after it boils down a bit).

4.  Bring to boil, then turn heat to low and simmer until carrots and corn are tender enough to eat.

5.  Add “Ingredients D”, stir, simmer for another five minutes.

6.  Serve and enjoy!

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Allow Me to Introduce My Sneaky Bitz (Lessons in Self Love)

Allow me to introduce Sneaky Bitz.  You might already know Sneaky Bitz.  You see, Sneaky Bitz is that aspect of me (or you) that tries to sabotage things in life… and often, Sneaky Bitz does this in a sneaky way – sometimes to the point that we are not even aware of it.  If I’m not paying attention, Sneaky Bitz might succeed but I’ve gotten pretty good at playing Sneaky Bitz’s game.  Ha!

For example, I woke up this morning and it felt like every muscle in my body ached.  My Sneaky Bitz tried to convince me that I could baby myself and stay home from Ashtanga yoga practice, reasoning that I’m tired, I hurt, I’ve worked hard and I deserve a break, right?!  All valid arguments, right?  Why not pamper myself a little for a change?  Ha!

Coconut2So you know what I did?  I said, “nuh-uh.  Not this time, Sneaky Bitz!  I caught you!  Haa ha ha!  Nice try!”  Then I got my butt up out of bed and I went to Ashtanga practice.  On the way home, I treated myself with the nourishment of a fresh young coconut (one of nature’s best source of electrolytes).  Then I cleaned my yoga mat and let it, and me, soak up the sun for thirty minutes.  After that, I stepped up my game.

You see, part of the reason for the physical pain is because some areas of my body are weak.  So, I treated myself farther by doing 280 various forms of crunches and 296 reps of various leg lifts.  Then, thanks to my lovely roommates, I treated myself to some home-made Sambar with home-grown lentil and mung bean sprouts!  Take that, Sneaky Bitz!

Actually, you have to be kind to Sneaky Bitz, because it is a part of you.. almost child-like, you have to teach it new ways to be 🙂  Sneaky Bitz is your friend.  Ha ha ha ha.

Truth is, although it sounded good at the time, had I rolled over and went back to sleep, I would have felt really bad about myself later and my practice would have suffered.  If you’re wondering how I do it or how I get the strength or motivation in moments like this, you’re not alone; a friend recently asked me the same thing. It can be defined with two words:  Self Love. But how do you love yourself?  What is Self Love?  Ah… multi-million-dollar questions, each with a several-part, multidimensional answer.

Check out this quote I posted on my Facebook page:

SelfLove

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So, I asked myself this morning, “If I really, truly love myself, then would I allow myself to go back to bed, knowing the negative consequences?”  The answer was a re-sounding, “NO!”.

If that question doesn’t resonate with you, then try this technique that I used to use as my gauge.  Change the context of the question and ask yourself, “If my best friend were in this situation, what would I advise him or her to do?”  It’s a powerful question that lends us the ability to see the situation through a different lens.  For most people, put in the context of someone other than ourselves (especially someone we admire, respect and love), the answer is easily accessible.

Once, I sat in a car with two young adults (in a relationship) arguing over who had hurt who the most.  After the young woman poured her heart out to me, relaying all of the ‘wrongs’ her boyfriend had done over the past three years, I was astounded that they were still together.  What’s more, I could clearly see that this girl lacked self love.  So I gave her the magic question.

I said “You love and respect your best friend dearly, right?”

“Yes”, she replied.

“Okay.  If your best friend were in this situation, what advice would you give to her?”

She said, “I’d tell her to end the relationship immediately and leave his sorry ass!”

“Then why do you not love and respect yourself enough to do the same?”, I questioned.

A still silence consumed the vehicle and the rest of the ride was very quiet.  You see, in all truthfulness, this man had treated her very wrong, but I couldn’t tell her that.  It’s something she had to see and figure out for herself.  Her Sneaky Bitz was making excuses for this guy and, up to that point, she was convinced that they belonged together in a relationship.  The next day, she left him.

Do you have a Sneaky Bitz?  What questions or techniques do you use to over come it’s grasp?

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Roasted Vegetables with Peanut Sauce

RasaDhatu

Photo:  Roasted Vegetables and Tofu at Rasa Dhatu in Gokulam, India

This recipe is inspired by my visit to Rasa Dhatu today.  Such a simple, delicious treat!

SELECT YOUR VEGGIES: 
My plate has the following but you can add what you like:

Carrot
Baby Corn
Yellow Squash
Zuchinni
Cherry Tomatoes
Red Bell Pepper
Green Bell Pepper
Onion


NOTE

For best results pre-heat oven to 375 and cut vegetables into evenly sliced and same-sized pieces.

 

PEANUT SAUCE
1/2 Cup Peanut Butter
6 Tbsp Water
5 Tbsp Rice Vinegar* (May substitute with freshly squeezed lemon or lime juice)
3 Tbsp Braggs Liquid Amino’s (Organic Section at Dillons or the Health Food Store)
2 Tbsp Honey (or other sweetener, to taste)

* – Typically available in Ethnic section at Dillons or near Chinese ingredients.


ROAST THE VEGGIES

  1. To help the vegetables to brown, you can toss and cover evenly with oil.
  2. Add any type of flavoring you would like:  Salt, Pepper, Chopped garlic, Rosemary, Chiles, Red pepper flakes
  3. Spread veggies evenly in a roasting pan so as not to touch on the sides.
  4. Once browned, turn with spatula to brown other side.
  5. Once browned again, cover with foil until tender.
  6. Remove to a dish and pour sauce over them.

For a little more flavor you could add some garlic and ginger to the Peanut Sauce, or garlic/ginger paste.  Get creative and make it yours!  Let me know how it turns out and what you did to make it your own 😀  Happy Eating!

In Love and Gratitude,

Jodi

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