Tag Archives: Health Coach Tips

Health Benefits of Zinc and Recipes to Include it in Your Diet

Health Benefits of Zinc and Recipes to Include it in your Diet

Zinc is a trace mineral and is needed for many important functions in the body. Zinc is not stored in the cells of the body, so it is needed in small amounts consistently. Benefits of zinc are: shorter duration of the common cold, good hair, skin and nails, prevention of age related macular degeneration, help in regulating blood glucose, keeps your immune system strong, and may stabilize cognition according to a six month study in Florida on Alzheimer’s patients.

I reversed a zinc deficiency by adding whole foods containing zinc daily into my diet using food as medicine. When I retested three months later, my zinc levels were normal, and my hair was growing thicker again. Once I started eating the zinc containing foods, I found I craved them and couldn’t get enough for a while. This was most likely my body’s way of saying “Yes! Thank you for listening!”

Those at a greater risk of zinc deficiency are those with gastrointestinal disorders (my case), a vegetarian diet, large iron supplementation, diabetes, chronic diarrhea, and liver or kidney disorders. However it is becoming more common to have mild zinc deficiency world wide due to soil depletion.

According to studies, low level zinc deficiencies are on the rise in the world. Signs you may be deficient in zinc are:

Poor Memory

Brain Fog

Hair Loss

Vision Degeneration

Slow Wound Healing

Weakened Immune System (frequent colds for example)

White Spots on Fingernails

I don’t recommend supplementing with zinc unless you get tested for deficiency and work with a practitioner. However, eating a diet including foods containing great levels of zinc in a whole food form can be very beneficial to preventing or correcting a mild zinc deficiency. Whole foods that are a zinc rich are:

Oysters

Pumpkin Seeds (I use these) (One of the Best Plant Sources of Zinc)

Lamb

Tahini (Sesame Seed Butter also a good source of calcium)

Dark Chocolate (Ya!) Keep it at least 70% Dark or else you are getting too much sugar! I eat Alter Eco Dark Blackout Organic Chocolate that is 85% Cacao and it is melty on the tongue and yummy!

Almonds

Cashews

Chickpeas

Lobster

Beef

Pork

Chicken (Dark Meat)

Yogurt

Cheese (such as cheddar and Swiss)

Here are some delicious recipes you can make at home that are good sources of zinc!

  1. Almond Tahini Grain Free Cookies
  2. Chesapeake Crab Cakes
  3. Chocolate Mocha No Moo Smoothie
  4. Chinese 5 Spice Chicken Bites
  5. Lamb and Pine Nut Meatballs with Swiss Chard
  6. Mango Cashew Chicken Salad
  7. Oven Chuck Roast with Vegetables
  8. Oven Roasted Carrots with Cumin, Lime and Pumpkin Seeds
  9. Pizza Kale Chips
  10. Pumpkin Seed Pesto
  11. Sunflower Pumpkin Seed Crackers

References:

Discovery of Human Zinc Deficiency: It’s Impact on Human Health and Disease

The Emerging Role for Zinc in Depression and Psychosis

Zinc Deficiency Associated with Hypothyroidism: An Overlooked Cause of Severe Alopecia

A 3-Month Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study Evaluating the Ability of an Extra-Strength Marine Protein Supplement to Promote Hair Growth and Decrease Shedding in Women with Self-Perceived Thinning Hair

Zinc Fact Sheet for Health Professionals NIH

Disclaimer: This medical information is not advice and should not be treated as such. Consult your doctor before taking any supplements or vitamins.   The medical information on this website is provided without any representations or warranties, express or implied. You must not rely on the information on my website as an alternative to medical advice from your doctor. If you have any specific questions about any medical matter, you should consult your doctor. If you think you may be suffering from any medical condition, you should seek immediate medical attention. You should never delay seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice or discontinue medical treatment because of information on this website.

Stay Toned in Ten Minutes a Day!

Good Morning!
Keep moving! The key to being fit and toned is consistency. Once you carve out the time and form the habit, it is much easier to fit it in to your schedule. Toning targeted body parts can be accomplished in a rotating ten minutes a day routine. Meaning for example, Monday target the arms, Tuesday target the buns, Wednesday Abs. This is very effective and gives muscles two days of rest between workouts. If you want to work out from home, there are many great ten minute workouts online that are totally free!
Here’s a few to get you started!

12 Minute Outdoor Workout to Blast Calories

Ten Minute Strapless Dress Workout

Ten Minute Booty Workout

Ten Minute Abs and Core Without Crunches

Stay fit with theses quick toning workouts!

Sandra Shields, Certified Health Coach

Enjoy your day!

*Disclaimer – You should check with your doctor before starting any fitness routine. This is not medical advice and is for informational purposes only.

Pittaya Watermelon Smoothie Bowl!

Hey you all! Are you ready for Summer and Smoothie Bowls? I am! Recently when I was on a trip to Phoenix, I stopped at Nektar Juice Bar and had their Pitaya Smoothie Bowl. It was such a gorgeous color of pink from the Pitaya, also know as Dragon Fruit, and it was delicious. I loved it so much, I was inspired to create my own!

I wanted ingredients to promote glowing and hydrated skin.  In the Summertime, the heat requires lots of hydration for our skin to stay plump and soft. This smoothie bowl will feed your skin from the inside out, as well as give you a daily dose of Selenium to give your thyroid vital nutrients to function its best. The selenium in this recipe comes from the chopped Brazil nuts in the topping. Just two Brazil nuts a day has your RDA of selenium! Pitaya (Dragon Fruit) is a superfruit that is a rich magenta color. You can pick up frozen smoothie packs of this fruit at your local health food store or Whole Foods Market. Pitaya is high in fiber and a good source of magnesium. A cup of watermelon in the smoothie is very hydrating and contains lycopene and vitamin C. I also added frozen cherries (which have the benefit of reducing inflammation and may reduce belly fat), coconut butter for healthy fat, and coconut water (more hydrating benefits). Here’s how you make it!

Pitaya Watermelon Smoothie Bowl

Ingredients:

1 Package of Frozen Pitaya Fruit

1 Frozen Banana (cut into thirds)

1 Cup of Frozen Watermelon (I like to cut it into chunks and have it on hand in my freezer for smoothies)

1/2 Cup of Frozen Sweet Cherries

1 Tablespoon of Coconut Butter

1/2 Cup of Coconut Water

Directions: Add all the ingredients to a high speed blender and puree. Pour into your favorite bowl, and top with blueberries, 2 chopped brazil nuts, and some coconut flakes. Enjoy!

Eat Your Nutrients!

Sandra Shields, Certified Health Coach

 

 

 

Start Your Day with Positive Thoughts!

Happy Monday! Stay positive this week and see what happens!

positive-thought-quote

Each time a negative thought comes in your mind, replace it with something you are grateful for. For instance replace “I am so tired, I can’t believe it is Monday” with “I am so grateful I have this whole day to live on this beautiful planet”. Jot down a daily note of what you did each day when you started down the negative thoughts road, and put a positive spin on your day. Then, look back on the week and note the difference it made!
Enjoy your week!
Sandra Shields, Health Coach

Butternut Squash Lasagna

butternut-squash-lasagna-with-a-fork

A piping hot casserole is on the top of my list in the colder months! Intuitively we want to have warmer, heavier foods during the winter season. When you get in tune with your body’s signals, it tells you what it needs. If you think about it, we naturally want to eat with the seasons when we are really in tune with ourselves.

One of the tips I learned in Health Coaching school was to eat until I was 80 percent full, and it is really effective. I feel great when I don’t eat until I am completely stuffed and have had enough to feel satiated and comfortable. This way of eating keeps weight pretty much the same without having to restrict calories. I really dislike restriction of food, I am a foodie, but I love feeling great in my clothes! Don’t deprive me! 🙂 So, eating nutrient rich food is not only great for you, it avoids dieting and keeps the body fed and full of energy.  I prefer “crowding out” which simply means, eating more real food so you don’t have room for the opposite. When you are eating healthy, whole foods made into scrumptious dishes like this casserole, you don’t crave junk. All my recipes have health benefits, even the sweet ones! One of the things I tell and have proven to my clients is, when they give their taste buds time to change, by taking out processed food for a few months, when they go back to eating them, they will taste artificial and too sweet or chemically. They actually will prefer the real stuff! You can eat food that isn’t just good for you, but is also just G-O-O-D!

Getting back to the scrumptious lasagna though, this Butternut Squash Lasagna uses thin sliced butternut as the noodles and is hearty and flavorful with a nice caramelized top! There are lots of nutritious dried herbs and one of my favorite flavor additions, chopped fennel!

butternut-squash-lasagna

Butternut Squash Lasagna

Preheat your oven to 375º degrees. You can assemble this dish in advance and refrigerate it covered until you are ready to bake it!

Ingredients:

1 Butternut Squash (Medium to Large)

1 Pound of Grass Fed Ground Beef

1 Pound of Ground Pork

1 Fennel Bulb (medium sized, diced)

1 Cup of Sliced Scallions

1 Jar of Strained Organic Tomatoes (24 oz.), or Tomato Puree (I like this brand)

2 Tablespoons of Garlic Olive Oil (or 2 TBS of Regular EVOO plus 3 minced garlic cloves)

1 Tablespoon of Olive Oil

1 Teaspoon of Dried Parsley

1 Teaspoon of Dried Basil

1 Teaspoon of Dried Oregano

1/2 Teaspoon of Dried Marjoram

1/2 Teaspoon of Dried Thyme

1/4 Teaspoon of Dried Rosemary

1 1/2 Teaspoons of Sea Salt (or Himalayan Pink my personal favorite)

Directions:
Peel the butternut squash. Divide the peeled whole squash in half lengthwise and remove the seeds. Laying the two squash halves flat side down on a cutting board, cut it into 1/2 inch slices so they form half moon shapes perfect for layering as noodles. Set aside.

In a large skillet, add 2 Tablespoons of Garlic Olive Oil (or your olive oil and fresh minced garlic) over medium high heat. Add your ground beef, pork and 1/2 teaspoon of sea salt, and brown. When almost brown, but still a little pink, add the diced fennel, scallions, dried herbs and another 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Keep browning until the fennel is tender, about five minutes. Drain off the excess fat. Add the crushed tomatoes, and thoroughly combine with the meat and herbs bring it to a simmer. Remove from the heat and set aside.

In a large bowl, toss your butternut squash slices with 1 Tablespoon of Olive Oil and 1/2 teaspoon of sea salt.

Coat a 14″ x 10″ inch casserole dish (approximate size) with olive oil. Add a single layer of butternut squash, filling in the gaps as well as you can, it doesn’t have to be perfectly covered. Add 1/3 of the meat mixture. Add another layer of butternut squash and another 1/3 of the meat mixture. Add the final layer of butternut squash, and finish with the last 1/3 of the meat mixture.

Cover with aluminum foil, and bake in the oven for 1 hour. Remove the foil, and bake another 15 to 30 minutes, or until the top is browned and caramelized and the squash is really tender.

Remove from the oven, and let it sit ten minutes before serving!

*Optional Pecorino cheese grated on the top. It is a delicious Italian cheese made from sheep’s milk.

Like all lasagna, this is even better leftover!

Eat Your Nutrients!

Eat Your Nutrients!

Tips For Buying Produce Without a Grocery List or Menu Plan!

In our busy schedules, it is not always easy to plan ahead what meals you will be making for the week. I like to shop for produce that looks the freshest and most colorful and take it from there. Watch the short video below of me at the store.  It is easier than a menu plan where they may or may not have what I am looking for, helps me eat plenty of vegetables and fruit at their best, and keeps it interesting!

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