Resistance to Healthy Eating Goals from Family and Friends

 

daisy tea

Don’t Let Family and Friend’s Resistance of Your Healthy Eating Goals Sabotage You.
I’ve been there. Change is hard no matter what it is. Humans do not like to be uncomfortable, and change disrupts the apple cart.
Psychological analysis of why someone you care about is so upset by what You choose to put in your mouth is written about a lot, but the truth is there is an array of reasons depending on the relationship.
What you eat and how it will make You feel about yourself, your energy, your health, your looks, your vitality, your pain, your future ultimately affects you! 


Food is such a hot button, and it draws the lines between friends and family and cuts loose a slew of judgement and opinions on both sides.


So what are the facts? 


Healthy Eating and choosing foods that support your body and well being will make you:


Less Bloated
Mentally Sharper
More Energetic
Leaner with more Muscle Mass
Create Healthier Cells Going Forward
Give You the best form of Whole Food Nutrients
A Better Chance of Dying of Old Age
Blood Sugar Regulation
Supportive of the Health of the Next Generation through example
Better Mood
Glowing Skin


I’m interested. What have you found to be the biggest challenge socially or with family that keeps you stuck eating food that really doesn’t serve you?

I always love to hear from you!
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Sandra Shields, Health Coach

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Chocolate Chip, Cranberry, Walnut Cookies (Grain Free)

Chocolate Chip, Cranberry Walnut Grain Free Cookies

I am super pumped about this cookie, because it is the real deal, and it uses Banana Flour!

It does not taste like bananas. It tastes like a legit white flour cookie, but it is a grain free, Paleo, maple sugar sweetened, gluten and dairy free cookie! It even spreads in the oven without having to press it with your palm! If you are not a recipe developer, this might not be significant to you, but trust me, it’s awesome!!!

We have had a lot of batches of this cookie version around, as I’ve been testing it repeatedly and tweaking the ingredients. This is the one!

Gluten and Grain Free Banana Flour Chocolate Chip Cookies

Almond flour, coconut flour and other grain free flours are great for baking as well. But if you know me well enough, you know that my passion is writing recipes for food intolerances and those who want to eat healthier. Banana Flour isn’t something I have worked with before until now.

Grain Free Banana Flour Paleo Chocolate Chip Cookies

This cookie has dark chocolate chips, dried fruit sweetened cranberries and brain benefiting walnuts in it. For a nut free cookie, just omit the walnuts and increase the chocolate chips and cranberries equally. There is olive oil in the recipe as well….a very Italian and healthy baking ingredient! It is good in cookies! I did a 50/50 split between it and organic shortening. Shortening gives it the mouth feel you crave and helps with spreading and browning evenly.

Chocolate Chip, Cranberry, Walnut Cookies Healthier Bakiing

This is the banana flour I have been using to test and make these cookies. It is GMO Free Gluten Free, Vegan, Paleo and contains only 100% bananas.

Chocolate Chip, Cranberry, Walnut Cookies Healthier Bakiing

Chocolate Chip, Cranberry, Walnut Cookies (Grain Free)

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Ingredients:

1 Egg

3 Tablespoons of Olive Oil

3 Tablespoons of Organic Shortening (I use Spectrum)

6 Tablespoons of Pure Maple Sugar

1/2 Cup of Banana Flour

1/2 Teaspoon of Pure Vanilla Extract

1/4 Teaspoon of Baking Soda

1/4 Teaspoon of Cinnamon

1/8 Teaspoon of Nutmeg

1/8 Teaspoon of Sea Salt

1/3 Cup of Dark Chocolate Chips (I use Enjoy Life)

1/3 Cup of Dried Fruit Sweetened Cranberries

1/3 Cup of Walnuts (chopped)

Directions:

In a medium mixing bowl, with an electric hand mixer, beat together the olive oil, shortening and maple sugar until creamy. Add the egg and vanilla, and beat for one minute. Sift together the banana flour, sea salt, baking soda, cinnamon and nutmeg and stir it with a spatula into the wet mix until it is starting to incorporate. Then, beat it with an electric hand held mixer until incorporated and creamy. If you don’t stir it in with a spatula first, the banana flour is very light and will fly everywhere.

Fold in the chocolate chips, cranberries and walnuts with a spatula.

Banana Flour Cookie Dough

Scoop the dough into tablespoon mounds on two parchment lined cookie sheets. You should have 14 cookies.

Oven Ready Banana Flour Cookies

Bake in your preheated oven for 11 minutes, rotating the sheets half way through the baking (top to bottom and turning side to side). Cool for five minutes on the sheet, then remove to a wire rack to completely cool.

Enjoy!!!

Chocolate Chip, Cranberry, Walnut Grain Free Cookies, Dairy Free, Paleo, Gluten Free

 

 

Sundried Tomato, Basil, Chicken “Pasta”

Chicken, Tomato Basil Noodles

Good for you Pasta Bowls will all the flavor and more vegetables, less carbs!

That was the goal of this juicy chicken and pasta bowl.

Now I’m a girl who grew up with Pasta Sunday, and I still look forward to a big serving, but with a healthier twist that isn’t going to give my belly a pooch and have me slumping down on the sofa for the rest of the evening in a carbohydrate coma.

Chicken Tomato Basil Pasta Toss Grain Free

It is always a great idea to choose boneless chicken thighs if you don’t want to take the chance of getting a dry breast. Thighs just have more flavor, and according to Dr. Oz in his White Chicken Meat vs. Dark Chicken Meat episode by Food Journalist Mark Schatzker, we have been trained our whole life to go for the white meat as a healthier option but is it? That being said, if you use perfectly roasted chicken breasts in this recipe, they would be delicious too, just not as foolproof. There is definitely a time to use them, like in my new chicken salad recipe with lemon pepper and strawberries here! The key is they have to be roasted to perfection and not taken a minute beyond 165°F.

Now, onward!

I like to roast my spaghetti squash the day before in the oven while I am making that night’s dinner, let it cool, then shred it into noodles with a fork and refrigerate it until the next day when I plan to make this dish. You can also completely do it in the same day.

Chicken Tomato Basil Spaghetti Squash Noodles

You are killing two birds with one stone, and saving a bunch of time by prepping it a day in advance.

This is a super flavorful pasta with beautiful oregano, basil and garlic all over the cubed thighs that are browned on the stove and then finished in the oven in 20 minutes total time. While the thighs are roasting, the rest of the ingredients can be prepped. Then you pour the chicken juices (broth) with all the seasonings right over the pasta. There is not a lot of fat in it because the chicken in skinless, but there is a Lot of Flavor!

Chicken Sundried Tomato Basil Pasta Grain and Dairy Free

Sundried Tomato, Basil, Chicken Pasta

1 Roasted Spaghetti Squash, cooled and shredded into “noodles”

1 Red Onion, Diced

2 Tablespoons of EVOO

2 Tablespoons of Olive Oil Packed Organic Sundried Tomatoes, diced

1 Cup of Sliced Scallions (green onions)

1/2 Cup of Fresh Basil

1 Can of Organic Mushrooms, drained


2 Pounds of Boneless, Skinless Chicken Thighs

1 Tablespoon of Dried Oregano

1 Tablespoon of Dried Basil

1 Tablespoon of EVOO

Sea Salt and Pepper to taste

1 Tablespoon of Fresh Squeezed Lemon Juice

2 Cloves of Minced Garlic

Directions:

Roast you spaghetti squash up to a day in advance. To roast the squash, preheat your oven to 400° degrees F. Split your spaghetti squash from stem to end and remove the seeds. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, and place it cut side down onto a rimmed cookie sheet. Roast 45 minutes to an hour, or until the top of the squash is soft when pressed.

Remove from the oven, and flip upright to cool completely. Shred the squash with fork tines. If using later, cover and refrigerate.

On the day you are making the dish:

Preheat the oven to 400° degrees F.

Whisk together the basil, oregano, olive oil, salt, pepper and garlic. Brush the seasoning over your boneless chicken thighs. In a large skillet, brown the chicken thighs on each side for five minutes, using a little more olive oil if necessary to prevent sticking. Transfer the chicken thighs to a parchment lined cookie sheet, and place in the oven to finish cooking through for approximately ten minutes, or until the thermometer reaches 165° F. Remove the thighs from the oven, and when cool enough, cut each thigh into quarters. Reserve the chicken juices from the pan, this is the broth!

In the same uncleaned pan you used to cook the chicken, you will make the sauce. All the brown bits from the chicken are little nuggets of flavor.

Brown the diced red onion in two tablespoons of olive oil until tender. Add the sundried tomatoes, scallions and mushroom, and stir warming and incorporating them into the cooked onions. Now, add the previously prepped spaghetti squash and the chopped fresh basil. Toss with tongues to coat and evenly distribute the vegetables.

Add the chicken pieces and juices from the chicken to the “noodles” heating and incorporating gently.

Serve!

Sundried Tomato, Chicken and Basil Grain Free Pasta has tons of flavor! It uses boneless chicken thighs and is a perfect bowl noodles for Grain Free Pasta Night! Paleo, Dairy, Gluten and Grain Free.

 

 

Strawberry Lemon Pepper Chicken Salad

Strawberry Lemon Pepper Chicken Salad on Blue Tray

This chicken salad is my current Summer obsession! It has all the bright flavors of Summertime with it’s bright lemon and strawberry flavors with the bite of black pepper! Perfection!

Strawberry Lemon Pepper Chicken Salad 1

I do hope you give it a go, because I think you will really love it!

One of the keys to a really good chicken salad with white breast meat is roasting the chicken breasts to absolute perfection. It is handy to have a instant read thermometer for this. Another tip when roasting boneless, skinless breasts is to rub them with olive oil. It locks in the juices!

Ming loves Strawberry season! We got freshly picked ones from the Farmer’s Market!

Ming Smelling the Strawberries.jpg

I use a loose mayonnaise based dressing in this chicken salad that has plenty of fresh lemon juice for a lovely zing!

Also incorporated into this salad is crunchy toasted pecans, two kinds of onions (scallions and yellow) and fresh diced strawberries!

Strawberry Lemon Pepper Chicken Salad

Ingredients for the Chicken:

3 pounds of good quality boneless skinless chicken breasts (4 to 5)

1 Tablespoon of Olive Oil

Zest of one Large Lemon

1/2 Teaspoon of Black Pepper

1/2 Teaspoon of Sea Salt

Preheat your oven to 400° degrees F. Lay out the chicken breasts on a rimmed baking sheet. Whisk together the olive oil, lemon zest, salt and pepper. Brush all over both sides of the breasts evenly. Roast in your preheated oven for about 20 minutes. Keep a close eye on them and do not take the breasts over 165° to ensure your chicken is juicy and tender. Check it at 20 minutes, remove any smaller breasts that may cook faster, then keep roasting if necessary in three minute increments until the chicken is done at 165° F. I can’t stand a dry breast!

When the chicken is done, remove it from the baking sheet onto a plate, then cover it with another plate to cool.

Assembling the Salad:

Ingredients:

2 Cups of Fresh Ripe Strawberries, diced

1/2 Cup of Finely Diced Yellow Onion

1/2 Cup of Green Scallions, sliced

1/2 Cup of Toasted Pecans (Toast at 350° degrees F. for 8 minutes) cooled and chopped

1/4 Teaspoon of Black Pepper

1/4 Teaspoon of Sea Salt

1/4 Cup of Fresh Squeezed Lemon Juice (from the lemon you zested for the chicken)

1/2 Cup plus 2 Tablespoons of Good Mayo (I use this kind)

1 Tablespoon of Really Good Honey (Local is Lovely)

Directions to finish the Chicken Salad:

Cube your cooled chicken breasts into 1 inch cubes. Place in a large bowl. Add the diced yellow onion, scallions, and toasted chopped pecans. In a blender, blend together the chicken salad dressing ingredients until creamy and smooth: (the mayonnaise, lemon juice, honey, sea salt, black pepper). Pour the dressing over the chicken salad (saving the strawberries for last as they are tender) Toss the chicken salad until the ingredients are evenly disbursed and coated with the dressing. Now, fold in the diced strawberries. Chill and serve.

I hope you enjoy this delicious warm weather chicken salad full of the bright flavors of Summertime!

Strawberry Lemon Pepper Chicken Salad for Summer..jpg

*This post has affiliate links in it. I receive a very small commission if you purchase through my links. The small commission helps cover the cost of maintaining this blog. Thanks! 🙂

Farm Market Local Strawberries

 

 

 

Tuscan Herb Spreadable Bean Dip

Tuscan Herb Spreadable Dip

Spreadable dips are perfect for all those Summer vegetables coming to market!

This dip is great year round on carrots, celery, cucumbers and healthy crackers. It is also terrific in a wrap. I have been particularly enjoying this on endive and with tender asparagus spears, and I’ve also been folding tender spring lettuces around it. It’s sooo good and versatile.

Tuscan Herb Spreadable Dip Healthy and Versatile. Vegetarian, Gluten and Dairy Free

Prep Time

10 minutes

Prep Notes

n/a

Cooking Time

n/a

Yields

10 servings

Ingredients

1 15. oz can of White Kidney Beans (aka Cannellini Beans) I use Eden Organic BPA Free

2 Tablespoons of Rice Vinegar

2 Tablespoons of Garlic Infused Olive Oil (or two cloves of minced garlic and EVOO)

2 Tablespoons of Minced Green Onion

1 1/2 Tablespoons of Minced Fresh Parsley

1/2 Tablespoon of Nutritional Yeast

1/2 Teaspoon of Sea Salt

1/4 Teaspoon of Black Pepper

Directions

  1. Combine the can of drained and rinsed beans, vinegar, garlic infused oil, nutritional yeast, sea salt and black pepper in a food processor.
  2. Process until smooth and creamy, scraping the sides of the bowl a couple of times. 
  3. Transfer to a bowl.
  4. Add green onions and parsley, and mix with a spoon.
  5. Taste and adjust seasonings as necessary.
  6. Serve with cut up veggies or chips.

Creamy Garlic and Herb Bean Dip Gluten and Dairy Free

Beans are a versatile protein rich source of fiber and vitamins, and they make a terrific spread! I hope you enjoy making and using this.

Please send me photos of how you are using this. I love to hear from you!

Tuscan Herb Spreadable Bean Dip. A delicious creamy, protein rich vegetarian accompaniment. Gluten Free & Dairy Free

Nutty Chocolate Peanut Butter Crispies

Calling all Chocolate and Peanut Butter Lovers! There is no need to sweat or slave in the kitchen with these no bake bars. You can be in and out in just under 20 minutes without starting your oven.

Nutty Chocolate Crispy Bars

These delicious bars are sweetened with pure Maple Syrup and have natural peanut butter in them along with whole grain brown rice crispies! They also have half the sugar of a traditional crispy treat!

Nutty Chocolate Crispy Bars, Dairy and Gluten Free

In fact, even with the chocolate chips they still contain just about half the amount of sugars that those famous marshmallow treats do. Chocolate and peanut butter are a classic pair, and the nut butter bumps up the nutrition of this bar with protein, plus there are whole grains from the brown rice cereal.

Peanut butter is the bomb in these, but feel free to exchange it for other nut butters if you desire.

Nutty Chocolate Peanut Butter Crispies

Prep Time

5 minutes

Cooking Time

10 minutes

Yields

12 servings

Ingredients

1 Cup of Natural Peanut Butter with just salt added no sugar

1/2 Cup of Pure Maple Syrup

1/2 Cup of Enjoy Life Dark Chocolate Chips or dark chocolate chips of your choice

2 Tablespoons of Coconut Oil, Butter or Ghee

3 Cups of Brown Rice Crispies Cereal (I use Erewhon Brown Rice Cereal)

1/2 Teaspoon of Vanilla Extract

Directions

  1. Grease a square baking dish with a neutral flavored oil (or butter if preferred).
  2. Add the syrup, coconut oil, vanilla and peanut butter to a medium saucepan.
  3. Heat over low heat until creamy and smooth.
  4. Stir in the chocolate chips until they melt.
  5. Remove from heat and stir in rice crispies.
  6. Gently press into your prepared baking dish and allow mixture to set until firm and cool. (about 30 minutes).
  7. Cut into squares and enjoy!

You may have noticed that I am now writing recipes outside of the Paleo template, but you will still see plenty of Paleo friendly recipes. I personally still eat Paleo 80% of the time, but I have developed sensitivities to some of the major Paleo foods used in baking……coconut and almonds. So, I have experimented, had a new food sensitivity lab test, and have found I am doing well with a broader range of healthy choices. All my recipes will continue to be Gluten Free.

Life is a journey, and I hope it is a journey for all who are seeking to better health and happiness!

Food should be a part of the celebration of life, and is meant to be enjoyed. It should help us thrive however, and not hinder our ability to have energy and vitality, as well as longevity. There is a time to celebrate and let go a little, because there is a danger in becoming too rigid beyond what is necessary. However, I have myself been really sick and helped myself greatly through food. Our bio-individuality makes us all unique.

Now go make some delicious, better for you, Nutty Chocolate Peanut Butter Crispies and share them with your friends, kids and family!

XOXO

Sandra

Nutty Chocolate Peanut Butter Crispies! Gluten Free and a Dairy Free Option with Half the Sugar

 

Today is National Bath Day, Benefits of a Bath

Today is National Bath Day!
There are plenty of reasons to take a bath instead of a shower, and with Posh cleaner beauty products you can indulge yourself with scents that fit your own personal preference. It’s a great feeling to choose your own customized bath essentials and have them on hand for bath days!
Here are eight proven benefits of a bath! I personally don’t need these to motivate me, but it sure is nice to know all the health benefits!

national bath day june 14

  1. Improves Heart Health with warm, not too hot, water. (consult a doctor if you have a heart condition)
  2. Helps you breathe easier
  3. Reduces Pain and Inflammation and Calms your Nervous System
  4. Improves Digestion
  5. Helps in the Early Stages of Labor
  6. Increases Blood Flow
  7. Cleanses and Moisturizes Skin, Hair and Eyes
  8. Helps you sleep better
If you like a bath bomb in your bath, Perfectly Posh has 3 Different Fizi 6 packs to choose from: Energizing, Calming or Nourishing.
If you are more of a bath salts person, you can choose from Four: Bubble Up, Muscle Through, Sleepy Sleep or Cold on Hold…
and there are many different lotions, scrubs, body serums and butters to choose from, based on which scents and consistencies appeal to you, after a bath!
posh ingredients face
If you are interested in the Perfectly Posh bath products I mentioned, I am a consultant for them, and you can view and shop here:
Also, if you are interested in becoming a consultant for Perfectly Posh and representing cleaner skin and body care products that are fun, lovely and effective cleaner beauty choices, contact me and I would be happy to talk to you about why I love being part of Perfectly Posh!
Have a beautiful day!
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