Understandably, in the midst of this “pandemic,” many of us are not focusing on the still ongoing and alarming rates of drug use and overdose deaths. In the last fiscal year, we saw an increase in usage of 28.5% over the previous year. Deaths increased from opioid use (fentanyl, heroin), methamphetamine (meth), cocaine and prescription opioids (pain medication).
As if that were not enough, in Americans aged 12 and over, 31.9 million are current illegal drug users, and have used within the last 30 days. The age of starting drug use seems to be getting younger all the time. In fact, when I was working in a middle-school setting, I noticed how many younger kids were starting at increasingly younger ages, while still in elementary school.
If you have read my articles, then you know I “harp” on nutrition, which includes foods and beverages and over-the-counter supplements, to both treat and prevent drug use. Hey, that’s the good news – it really works well!
This falls under the banner of holistic treatment (and thus also prevention). This includes work on a number of levels – the physical, the emotional, the cognitive, and the spiritual realms.
In addition to consuming a very health-giving diet – and this can vary from individual to individual – plus supplements, we might consider adding in services like massage, acupuncture, acupressure, yoga, meditation, and more. For example, how about energetic ways to help a person remove negative, trapped emotions from the past? Think Emotion Code and others.
Did you know that about 50% of adults in America use some type of alternative treatment modalities? And why not? At times, it also makes sense to combine some conventional with holistic approaches if we can get a better outcome and control for toxic side effects.
So, what are some commonalities that seem to work across all boundaries?
Eat whole foods – avoid overly processed foods that may seem to make life easier but will tend to help ruin our health! Think soda, white flour products (bread and pasta), candy, chips, etc. Whole foods are ones like meat (assuming you eat meat), lots of veggies made in healthful ways, a little fruit, healthy fats, etc. They don’t include products like packages of mixes that ask you to add the meat (sorry!)
There are many supplements and vitamins available that are healthy for all, and especially healthy for persons trying to recover from addiction. A few examples are the antioxidants (C, A, and E), fish oil, and especially amino acids which can aide in the detoxification phase of recovery as well as in healing our brain chemistry (especially neurotransmitters like serotonin).
This means that amino acids are also good for mood disorders and other conditions!
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*I mentioned Vitamin C above, and one of their best-sellers is the Tri-blend. This shot contains Zinc, Glutathione, and Vitamin C.
If you think that healthy foods don’t look or taste good, try this recipe:
Chicken and Veggie Stew
Chicken pieces, choose what you like
Onion, about ½ a medium size yellow one, diced
Mushrooms, about ½ to ¾ cup, chopped
Chicken broth – either make it yourself or buy an organic one preferably, about 2 cups
Spinach leaves – fresh – about 1 cup
Carrots, about ½ cup, diced
Celery, about ½ cup, diced
Any other vegetable you’d like to use!
Tomato sauce, if desired, about ½ cup, to taste
Olive oil, or other healthy fat, for browning, about ¼ cup
Brown onions, carrots, and celery along with chicken pieces in oil in pot until caramelized and browned.
Add all other vegetables.
Either transfer to a slow cooker or pressure cooker or other large pot and add broth. You can brown using the same pot you will cook with.
While stirring, add tomato sauce (or leave out according to taste).
Cook at least one hour at low heat after first bringing to a boil.
Chicken should be at least 165° F so make sure it’s cooked all the way through.
And, as always, please have a happy, holistically healthy day!
It goes without saying (although I’ve said it maybe too many times) that in order to help your family and others, and particularly your kids if you’re a parent, you need to help yourself first.
Why? If you give up your own health needs, you’re not making a great role model. Okay – being self-sacrificial is perhaps in the parent genes … LOL! However, as adults, and particularly as parents, we are role models. Remember the saying, actions speak louder than words? I’ve always found that to be true. Have you as well?
Self-care can be practiced even in the span of five minutes per day! If you need time to center yourself, do a 5-minute meditation. First, it’s good to know what type of self-care works well for you. Take some time to try out a few things if you don’t already know. If you do know, just schedule it into your day.
Make sure you have balance in your life. Do you work too many hours? See what you can do to curtail that. Time management skills are necessary. If you’re in a relationship, remember that it needs some quality time as well. So, find a babysitter you can afford, and you can rely on and schedule in some dating time, even if you and your significant other have been together for quite some time!
Revisit what you have done before in your life that you immensely enjoyed. If it’s not still a part of your life, then perhaps you can find a way to bring it back.
Exercise of some sort is an important part of this whole picture, too. I always recommend you do something physical that you enjoy. If you like to run, then find a lovely spot to run a little a few times a week. If you like dancing, either go to a dance school, or out to dances, or perhaps you can just put the music on and dance around your house!
As a parent, have you connected well with your partner to establish parenting values? I hope so! If you’re a single parent, just make sure you understand that the authoritative parenting style works the best out of most parenting styles. Yes, it has been studied scientifically and extensively. Authoritative parents show love, give support, and respect their kids. They also know how to set limits and consequences when those limits are challenged and/or broken. They are consistent in their expectations and actions.
How is your nutrition? Are you eating in a manner that is healthy for your own body? What are the kids eating? Not having proper nutrition in your diet means your body gets out of balance and that affects your energy and moods. So, make sure you get in plenty of veggies and other fresh produce, and reduce or even eliminate conventional junk foods. Be imaginative and if you love a junk food like pizza, make yourself a healthy version! Remember to drink plenty of fresh, clean water – I personally prefer spring water, not the filtered kind, unless it is triple-filtered.
Remember, nutrition represents about 75% of your entire health, even your mental health! So, it’s vitally important. If you still find you are struggling, balancing all the things you do, get some sort of help such as counseling. There are many different approaches to getting mental health help – coaching, counseling, energy approaches, etc. Find one that works well for you and your family.
Above all else, as a parent you know your kids need you to show them love and give them support. Kids need for you to set limits, and you need to be a great role model for them. If you are irresponsible in some way, telling your kids to be responsible may fall on deaf ears. If you want respect from your kids, make sure they understand that you respect them as well. Of course, there are going to be challenges from the kids in each stage of their development – especially in their tween and teen years – but prepare well – you can do it!
And, as always, please have a happy, holistically healthy day!
Use code "BOOST" through January 31st, 2022 to get 30% OFF Immunity for your Health | 4 CEU's!
What is happening: If you’re one of the many health care practitioners here in the United States, then you may be wondering what awaits you in the new year, 2022. Even if you’re not a practitioner and are just a very concerned parent or individual, you might still be wondering!
We all know how stressful life has been in the past couple of years. We have been facing increasing anxiety and depression rates, our kids especially have been getting more violent, adults are more violent (here in Columbus, Ohio we have experienced the highest homicide rate in our history, as reported in the news), and suicidal ideation plus suicides are up. Substance use and overdoses are also up.
Vulnerable populations are very hard-hit. For example, older adults are more likely to experience anxiety and depression during this “pandemic.” They are also at increased risk for severe illness.
People in general are experiencing fear as perhaps never before, they are angry, sad, worried, and maybe they are numbing themselves to all of this just as kids of using parents often do. We are seeing changes in appetite (i.e., some eat more to cope, and some eat less), and there is so much distraction from these feelings stemming from perceptions of the circumstances, that we have more difficulty concentrating and especially making sound decisions.
We might also be experiences problems with sleeping or experiencing nightmares. As practitioners, you are aware that emotions like these have corresponding physiological issues, and people may be experiencing headaches, other body pains, issues with digestion (stomach/colon), and many break out in hives, etc.
People with chronic health problems may be experiencing a downturn in their prognoses and health status, and many have stayed home out of fear, going without conventional or other treatment, thereby worsening their conditions.
There is also increased use of alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs!
How to cope: As practitioners and/or parents, or just individual adults, the very first thing to do is self-care. Remember, we are all role models, especially for kids! Most of us have some helping bones in our bodies – we have a natural tendency to be of assistance to others. Whether these people are family members, friends, strangers, or clients, we are serving as role models.
Therefore, in times of such stress, it is critical to see to our own needs first. Remember, when on an airplane, if the oxygen masks come down, you are instructed to put your own mask on first before helping others! There’s a good reason for that – you can’t help others if you’re hindered in any way.
It's important to keep up your overall health and stamina - especially your own inborn immune response - by consuming a healthy diet, rich in fresh produce, clean meats, or rice and beans, etc.. Assuming you’re a believer (!), plenty of health-giving vitamins that are absorbable in your bodies.
You have a much better chance of staying healthy if you keep your immune system highly functional. Besides consuming a healthy diet, some supplements that will help are omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin D, the B vitamins, zinc, rhodiola, Vitamins C, E, and A, iron, selenium, and zinc, just to name a few. Try to consume foods containing these supplements, but also supplement your food intake! That way you have a double punch of things that help!
It’s just as important in this current pandemic environment to practice mindfulness. This will help you combat the effects of the stress, helping to keep you calm and rational. This should help you focus, and this is important, because so many people around us are not doing this!
How you can help others: By remaining calm, cool, and collected, you will set the tone to help and inspire others to do so. Many people who have had COVID-19 have told us they don’t feel like themselves – they have some memory loss, are confused, have trouble concentrating, and just generally don’t feel like themselves. If you are a mental health care practitioner, you can help clients navigate the accompanying negative thoughts that occur with such feelings using the various talk therapy techniques.
This is highly important – in people who have passed away from COVID-19, their brains show large molecular changes in tissue, such as inflammation, disrupted circuits – much the way Alzheimer patients’ brains are, although apparently no traces of the virus have been discovered in brain tissue.
So definitely help others dealing with any of the above by supporting them to receive health care for their physical bodies, be it conventional or alternative. Lifestyle changes such as starting to meditate, intentionally doing activities that are calming (like taking a bubble bath) – “me” time – are helpful, engaging your creativity like painting, cooking, etc. that can help give a sense of normalcy, etc. If people are doing well on psychology medications, remind them to use them during such stressful times.
Moderate exercise is definitely very helpful in chasing the blues and other stressors away. I always recommend that people engage in physical activity that is both appropriate to their own bodies individually, and in doing things that are enjoyable to them, like dancing! Sleep health is likewise extremely important. So, instructing others on simple things like making sure all lights and sounds are out when trying to sleep represents a helpful strategy. Try to have people either turn off their electronic devices or at least darken them. Eating late at night is not a good strategy for high quality sleep.
We can also remind ourselves that this current climate won’t last forever, even if effects turn out to be long-term, and there are so many different tools we have at our fingertips that are helpful to ourselves and others. So, we just need to stay informed, and take good care of ourselves as we reach out to others.
Yes – you can do this!
And as always, please have a happy, holistically healthy day!
Use code "BOOST" through January 31st, 2022 to get 30% OFF Immunity for your Health | 4 CEU's!
We are into January 2022 now – no, I did not type 2021 – and many of us have indulged over the holiday season, spanning from at latest the latter part of November through the first of the year. Perhaps we are still indulging a little, to finish off the goodies, so children will not starve in China. (Okay, I am showing my age – my mother raised me this way to reinforce a clean plate approach to eating, even if what the children eat in other countries has nothing to do with my eating!).
I still have this mentality – it is apparently in the default programming section of my brain, and I have to fight it off and throw away foods I never should have been eating in the first place!
It stands to reason that our immune systems can use a re-boot at this time of year. Even with healthier eating and mindfulness, it does not hurt to do an internal cleansing and inspire new and healthy immune system growth periodically.
One way to help the immune system is by fasting or caloric restriction. This signals the body’s stem cells to reproduce new blood found in the bone marrow and related systems, and gives a boost to the immune system, most of which is located in the gut. This is especially helpful to older individuals and those with autoimmune conditions – resulting in recycling of unused immune cells and eliminating damaged cells, among other benefits.
Some individuals also juice-fast (using juice extraction), hopefully using fresh, organic vegetables and fruits. This supplies a large quantity of fresh, available nutrients to the body in one of the quickest ways possible. One should juice a smaller amount at a time and drink it immediately so as not to lose nutrients.
Alternatively, one can juice larger amounts and store them in the refrigerator, in airtight containers, filled to the top (i.e., try not to have any air in them and far fewer nutrients get lost). This has the effect of boosting the immune system, taking toxins from the body, and some people lose weight in the process. One can juice while eating lightly too, preferably fresh salads, clean proteins, or juice for a short amount of time, just also drinking water and/or herbal teas.
Some people choose to re-boot by eating fresh, clean, organic products – eating whole foods rather than processed ones. Accompany this by drinking pure, clean water – spring water is a great choice, although triple filtered water is also great. You can add some organic fruits, peels, etc. to your water, and it is possible to purchase water already flavored a bit by some fruit. This is just a healthy lifestyle choice 365 days a year.
If this is not your usual habit, it is a good time to start exercising – perhaps do not jump right away into massive workouts at the gym, but ease into a healthy exercise regime. Some people prefer to play music and dance – this can result also in great aerobic exercise! Do something you enjoy and will look forward to continuing.
One can also start making smoothies on a daily basis, or even 3 or 4 times a week. These can be made using lots of fresh, organic, green, leafy vegetables, and cucumber adds much refreshment to both juice extraction and smoothies. A good pairing would be an apple, or berries, etc.
There has been a great deal of press concerning fermented foods and the immune system – this is also a great way to help your immune system detox and refresh itself.
In addition to taking pre- and probiotics, one can have miso soup, yogurt with live cultures, tempeh, kefir (a milk-based product), sauerkraut, etc.
If you’d love to learn more about various styles of holistically healthy eating approaches, please visit Health and Wellness Online!
And, as always, please have a happy, holistically healthy day!
Use code "BOOST" through January 31st, 2022 to get 30% OFF Immunity for your Health | 4 CEU's!
Can it be? Is it already the end-of-year holidays? With the year-end holidays starting in about two weeks, it may be prudent to get into a mindset to enjoy it and do in a way that minimizes damage. But is that really possible?! And of course, I am talking about eating!
Think about the fact that we actually like many of the healthier foods we eat. Then there are the other foods replete with sugars, refined grains, additives, etc. that we want to eat (even knowing we will regret it).
If we work in an office with others, goodies usually pop up about this time of year – cookies, candies, cakes, pies, etc. They are so hard to resist for many of us (me, for example).
So here are 7 tips to contain the “damage” and still enjoy many of our favorites:
Here is a recipe I concocted one day – it’s great for a cold, wintry day – very nourishing and very delicious and by the way, very good for your liver!
Recipe for Beef and Beet Soup/Stew
-Piece of beef, preferably organic, grass-fed, cut into bite sized pieces
-A few organic beets, cut into chunks
-Any other veggies you would like to put in, like onions, carrots, celery, zucchini, etc.
-Brown the meat and vegetables in the olive oil.
-Place them in a pressure cooker.
-Add enough broth and juice to cover the veggies and beef. The more you add the more thin the sauce will be.
-Season to taste – suggested: salt, pepper, paprika, minced garlic flakes or fresh garlic
-Pressure-cook for 60-90 minutes
It seems easier to love others than to love ourselves. However, self-love can be a precursor to loving others in a healthy manner. So, remember to practice all kinds of self-care.
And, as always, please have a happy, holistically healthy day!
You’d think that at this time of year, during the holiday season, everyone would be “up” in their moods – happy, looking forward to celebrations with friends and family, etc. But we all know this is not always the case! In fact, seasonal depression is a very real phenomenon for many people, especially at year’s end and into the new year.
Have you ever heard the acronym, SAD? Well, it stands for a couple of things – it can mean the standard American diet (i.e., lots of junk food laced with chemicals), but it can also mean seasonal affective disorder. This can be impacted by the fact that for many of us, there is not as much sun in many parts of the word (with its life- and good mood-giving Vitamin D).
Here are a few risk factors associated with seasonal affective disorder: if you have blood relatives with depression, if you’re female (we get this four times more than men according to statistics), if you’re an adult between 18 and 30, and if you live in an area of the country with fewer daylight hours during winter (think New York and others).
You may feel sleepy during the daytime or have a pretty consistent sad mood. You may lose interest in your normal activities, and not feel very good about yourself. You may either sleep late or perhaps you’re not sleeping as much as usual. You may find yourself gaining weight (compensating with food?), and you may even have thoughts of harming yourself.
If that seems to describe you, then don’t despair – there are many things you can do to get out from under this burden and change your mood and general outlook on life in a more positive direction!
Here are a few tips to help:
Don’t get stuck in a depressed rut. Take action and get well – you can do this!
And, as always, I wish you a happy, holistically healthy day.
We may or may not realize it, but most of us eat herbs all the time. That’s because they make our foods taste so yummy! Have you ever eaten spaghetti or pizza? Herbs give it that special flavor. Plus, they add great nutritive content, and that’s important both to maintaining and building health.
Most of us are so unselfish, that we are more concerned about our kids and other loved ones. But we must also be concerned with ourselves! If we let our own health slip, what good are we to others?!
Many people want to grow their own herbs. I would personally be in favor of that. In fact, they’re easily grown on a patio, in small pots, or in the ground directly.
I love their color, their scent, and well, they’re just beautiful to look at. They look just as good as outside plants as they do inside our homes. Try mint and lavender and basil – they smell so good, and they look so good.
Think about this – growing your own herbs has the added benefit of being able to add it to your cooking, and at a very low cost since you grew it yourself. They add flavor, but also have so many medicinal properties, for your body and mind.
You can drink herbs as teas, or you can take them as a tincture. (You can even make your own tinctures if you want.) Do you like peppermint or spearmint? These are herbs! I even grew chocolate mint one year – it grew prolifically and really tasted like chocolate. Plus, you can dry your own herbs and store them for a good long while, like in winter.
Growing herbs indoors has been shown to help your moods, clean the air (improve air quality in your home), and can lighten your stress load. If you feel a spiritual connection to nature, think of growing herbs as part of that connection … because it certainly is!
Herbs have such great healing power, too. Ginseng helps to boost energy plus it can stimulate brain function. Sage is known to enhance cognition in adults. (That’s thinking better, and who couldn’t use a boost there now and again?!) Bacopa has been shown to treat anxiety, insomnia, and memory issues. And green tea has been around for centuries. One of its main components is an antioxidant, epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), which has been shown scientifically to be able to help protect the heart.
Other herbs are good for colds and perhaps other viruses, and some even for sexual dysfunction. Elderberry has been used for a very long time to treat headaches, nerve pain, colds, and other viral infections.
While I could go on and on, it’s clear that herbs have a very useful purpose in life and in my opinion, we should make good use of what nature has to offer, most especially when it’s so tasteful and beautiful. Remember to surf the web for the many, many recipes to be found using herbs – all at no cost to you.
For a delicious recipe using chicken and herbs, try this one or create your own:
Chicken and Herbs Recipe
And as always, I wish you a happy, holistically healthy day.
Professionals needing CE's: Check out my new Herbs for your Health course for 4 CE Credit Hours
Holistic Guide for the Parents and People: Herbs for your Health Guide
Tea – Delicious and Healthy
So many of us are tea drinkers here in America, although I tend to think of tea drinking as a pastime of the British mostly. That’s not even true! But recently I have been increasingly aware of the many tea drinkers here at home; in fact, more than 159 million Americans drink it.
In fact, in 2020, Americans drank more than 84 billion servings of tea! And, on any day, over 50% of the American population drinks tea.
So, it seems wise, knowing how popular tea drinking is, to explore the many health benefits of tea, and there are a bunch!
Tea has been clinically studied for a long time, so when we talk benefits, we mean real, scientific benefits. Here are a few:
Tea can boost the immune system. And if there’s ever a time to boost the immune system, it would be during the current pandemic! In fact, white tea may be the most effective type in fighting cancer, another disease having to do with our immunity.
Chamomile tea can help reduce menstrual pain and muscle spasms; it is also known to improve sleep quality and quantity, help generally with relaxation, thereby reducing stress.
Rooibos tea, an African tea, is known to improve blood pressure and circulation (thereby being heart healthy) and can help boost our good cholesterol and lower our bad cholesterol. It can also help keep our skin and hair healthy.
Peppermint tea, which has menthol naturally in it, can help sooth an upset stomach and help you if you’re constipated and/or have irritable bowel syndrome or even motion sickness.
Ginger is wonderful any way you eat it! But as a tea it can help to ward off morning sickness and is useful if you have chronic indigestion. It is also known to help relieve joint pain if you have osteoarthritis.
Green tea, being high in flavonoids, can also help your heart health like rooibos tea by lowering bad cholesterol and raising your good cholesterol. It can also help lower your triglycerides and impact total cholesterol count.
Black tea, which stems from the same plant as does green tea, is made by drying and fermenting the leaves which results in a darker color and different taste. This one is useful if applied to minor cuts and abrasions and bruises; it is also known to reduce swelling and can lower inflammation from rashes and even poison ivy. In general, tea has antioxidants which are completely healthy, it has less caffeine than coffee (or none at all), and as stated above, can help reduce your risk of heart issues. It might also be helpful in the battle of the bulge (i.e., weight loss). It may be able to help protect your bones and is gut healthy. Remember – three-fourths of our immune system resides in the gut so it’s a great idea to keep the gut nice and healthy!
At the time of this writing, we are heading into the cold weather seasons. There’s nothing like a hot cup of tea (or iced if you prefer) to give you comfort and warmth and a sense of feeling cozy.
How about a few recipes?!
One favorite tea recipe is Moroccan tea. You can make this with green tea and fresh (preferably organic) spearmint leaves. Be careful about sweetening this up, as table sugar is never really good for you – LOL! Add the tea to boiling water and let it steep for about 15 minutes. Strain it, if need be, put the spearmint at the bottom of the teapot and pour the tea over the leaves. Enjoy!
Another good one is lemon ginger tea. You will need fresh ginger root (preferably organic), perhaps a very little honey if you like it sweet (but use very sparingly), and one (organic or local) lemon which has been rinsed well. Fill a pot with water and boil. Turn the heat down to medium. Add some thinly sliced ginger root (leaving the peel on it). Simmer for about 15 minutes or until it tastes well and some of the water has reduced. Enjoy!
Then there’s chai tea. You can use Darjeeling tea, fresh cinnamon sticks, fresh ginger root, cloves, green cardamom pods, black peppercorns, and a little honey. You’ll also need whole milk. Using a grinder or a mortar and pestle grind the cloves, cardamon, and black peppercorns. Add all the above (except the milk and honey) to a saucepan, stir, and simmer for about 10-15 minutes. You may want to strain the spices and tea leaves out and then add the milk and honey, and make sure everything is nice and warm for a cozy, cuddly day. Enjoy!
Now, if you’re wanting to lose some weight, you can enhance the process of dieting and exercising with some homemade recipes. As many of you know, green tea can be particularly useful in a variety of ways. It is also good if you’re trying to lose weight. You can make a delicious and healthy tea with grated ginger (using either the root or powder), cinnamon (use sticks or powder), water of course, green tea (loose or in teabag form), a little lemon juice (fresh organic will be the best), and if you want a little sweetener, use a tiny bit of honey. You can also use – in any recipe – a healthy sweetener like stevia or erythritol, for example. You can always put in a few fresh mint leaves as a garnish and some of its nutrients will add flavor and health-giving properties to your tea. Boil the ginger and cinnamon in the water for a few minutes. Add honey or healthy substitute (or leave it out if you wish), and a little lemon juice and mix. Strain this mixture. Then put in your green tea bag or leaves. Let it steep for just a couple of minutes. Enjoy!
As an addition to a healthy weight-loss program, you can choose a tea recipe that will help give your metabolic rate a boost. Take some warm water, a little bit of raw honey or other healthy substitute, a little fresh lemon juice, a little raw apple cider vinegar, a little fresh ginger, a little cinnamon, and a bit of cayenne pepper. First mix the honey with the warm water, add the lemon juice and apple cider vinegar. Add ginger (preferably freshly grated) and some cinnamon (use a healthy one). Finally add the cayenne pepper; mix up well and … enjoy!
And as always, have a happy, holistically healthy day!
Let’s face it – times have been tough the last couple of years! Many of us have lost our income sources, as least temporarily during this “pandemic.” Thank heavens for unemployment, but it’s only a fraction of what our income is or has been. Although things seem to be picking up again for many people, we can still be justifiably concerned with cash flow, paying bills, and feeding ourselves and our loved ones.
So, this begs the question – can we eat healthy on a tighter budget? Can it really be done?
The answer is a resounding YES! I’ll tell you how!
First of all, it’s a great time to start reducing our junk food intake. Junk food, as most of us know, takes away from our healthy by supplying a fraction of substandard nutrients. I can hear it now – but I can’t afford to buy healthy food! I used to say and think this myself in earlier years.
However, it’s not true. Even organic foods go on sale; in fact, some grocery stores have it on clearance racks. The trick is to buy it at greatly reduced rates, and then either eat it right away, or throw it in the freezer if it’s fresh meat, poultry, or wild caught fish, or store it in your cupboards if it’s something canned, such as organic beans.
If you are buying fresh produce on sale, just buy enough to feed yourselves before it goes bad. So, salads would be something to consume right away, but you can get by a little longer if you cook with it in soups, stir-fries, stews, etc. (Plus you can freeze it then.)
Don’t think you can’t do the same thing with fresh conventional foods. I’m always checking the meat clearance rack and checking for sales on everything. I visit my grocery store fairly often – some of you won’t have time or inclination to do so, and it’s just a suggestion.
If some of you have access to bulk purchasing, you can always buy things like spring water at bulk prices and larger quantities. So, in my opinion, if it makes sense to have a paid membership, then by all means do so, because over the course of a year, you will save much more money than the membership price.
Advance planning is always a good way to potentially save money. You’re not buying things so much on the spur of the moment. If you have a grocery list, then just buy what’s on the list.
It’s still usually less expensive to cook and eat at home, although I am a big fan of eating healthy in restaurants. But often and especially in the winter especially, when I don’t feel so much like going outside and running around, I eat more at home and my bank account thanks me!
If you cook more than you eat at one meal, don’t be afraid to consume your leftovers in a timely manner. Most cooked food can be frozen, so if you freeze your leftovers, you don’t have to have the same meal several times in a row.
Try not to shop when you’re hungry! Statistics show that we tend to buy more when our tummies are growling – LOL!
Remember to keep your food purchases to real, whole foods – skip the ramen noodles and mac and cheese even though they’re very inexpensive to buy, relatively speaking. Your overall health, including your mental health, will thank you!
Get to know your food brands – do your due diligence and make sure that these companies have a good reputation for quality, especially in terms of having a lack of chemical additives which really take away from your health. (Ask yourself, am I worth it?! And I really, really hope your answer is yes!)
So, if you have a good brand, and you’re always reading ingredients and know about processing methods, you can save a little more money and buy generic. One good example is the Whole Foods home brand (365), which always saves money. Since I shop at Kroger, I have familiarized myself with their Simple Truth Natural and Simple Truth Organic brands and have done my due diligence.
Another good hack is to purchase healthy but cheaper cuts of meat and you can use them in your pressure cooker, soups, stews, burritos, casseroles, etc.
After fresh produce (hopefully that’s local and in season), you can go to flash frozen fruits and veggies, as these will usually contain more healthy nutrients than canned.
If you have a green thumb, you can try your hand at growing your own garden of produce – it’s so much fun! I have a very tiny back yard, but I have cultivated it over about 5 years and it’s pretty close to organic by now.
You can grow your own plants from seeds, or you can buy organic plants, but at least purchase non-GMO plants. I lay fresh, organic soil down each year, too. I can easily get about 20 veggie plans in my small garden, although I will admit that it’s way too crowded. My yield each year is fantastic, and I really enjoy the miracle of growing my own food!
If you like digital and/or paper coupons, use them wisely. If your grocery store generates coupons for you, they may base them on your buying patterns, so at times, I get double discounts – from a mark-down and a coupon, combined. I buy more when I get good stuff cheap and use it up later.
And, as always, please have a happy and holistically healthy day!
It hardly seems possible that Thanksgiving Day is nearly upon us! My head is full of thoughts of turkey, stuffing, and other favorite dishes!
You might be asking yourself if it is possible to have a decadent, delicious Thanksgiving meal and have it healthy, too. Well … the answer is a resounding yes!
Use fresh (and organic when possible) veggies, including mashed potatoes and yams (okay, we’ll relax the carb count a little for the occasion if you watch them). Use little to no table sugar, but perhaps a little honey and/or maple syrup would be okay. Remember – I said a little bit! Some safer sweeteners to use are stevia and monk fruit extract, although these, I find, are an acquired taste.
I am baking a pumpkin pie as we speak, and I am using almond flour and crushed pecans for the crust. I purchased a can of organic pumpkin puree to act as a base for the filling. I plan to take some organic heavy whipping cream to put on top before we indulge! (This is allowed on my low carb approach and is it delicious!)
Now … for the turkey … or any meat you may be consuming (sorry to my vegetarian/vegan friends!): organic or all-natural meats can be a bit pricy, so I always purchase when they are on sale and into my freezer they go.
Since I rarely eat wheat anymore, I do not make a stuffing based on it, but almond flour and cream cheese – and maybe a little mozzarella thrown in – make up a good “bread” from which you can fashion dressing. If you like, you can get a gluten free package of stuffing mix, although it will still be starchy. Look on the internet for delicious recipes!
Are you getting the picture?! You are only limited by your imagination and your unwillingness to surf the net for wonderful, free recipes.
Avoid drinks with sugar, but indulge in a little wine, if you are so inclined. Remember – I said a little!
Above all else, count your blessings and bask in the knowledge that this is one holiday meal that will not be unhealthy. For more information on holistic healthy living, please visit my website!
And – as always – please have a happy, holistically healthy day and holiday season!