Healthy Recipe For Rosemary Chicken

 

Here's a delicious recipe that includes Rosemary from Dr. Mark Hyman's book, "The Blood Sugar Solution."

Lemon Rosemary Chicken with Swiss Chard and Baked Delicata Squash

 

Ingredients:

2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 Delicata squash halved and seeded (I used Acorn squash)

1 Lg head of Swiss Chard roughly chopped

2 (6 oz) Boneless chicken breasts (I used boneless skinless thighs)

1/4 Cup Almond Meal

Salt and pepper to taste

1/2 Cup low sodium chicken broth

Juice of 1/2 lemon

2 Tbsp fresh rosemary, chopped

  1. Preheat oven to 350
  2. Brush the cut sides of the squash with 1 tsp of the olive oil. Place squash, cut sides down on a baking sheet and roast for 20-30 min. It's cooked when a knife slides easily into the flesh when pierced.
  3. Heat 1 tsp oil in saucepan and saute the Swiss Chard 5-6 min until it wilts. Put aside
  4. Lay out a piece of plastic wrap on the counter, place the chicken on top with another piece of plastic wrap over it and pound with a kitchen mallet until they are about 1/4 inch thick.
  5. Sprinkle both sides of the chicken with the almond meal and salt and pepper to taste
  6. Heat remaining oil in your saute pan over medium high heat, add the chicken and cook 5 min per side.
  7. While the chicken is cooking, combine broth, lemon juice and rosemary in a bowl until well mixed.
  8. When the chicken is golden brown on both sides and cooked well through, add the liquid mixture to the pan and reduce for 3-4 minutes.

Serve chicken on top of the cooked greens with the squash on the side. Yummmmmm!

Wishing you a delicious and healthy week!
Best of Health,

Kathi

Want to Sniff Some Rosemary With Me?

 

You have most likely seen the info passing around on Facebook that sniffing Rosemary is good for your memory. Did you think it was baloney?  I wondered too. So, of course, I did some research, and here's what I found.

 

Rosemary has been known as the "herb of remembrance" for centuries! That's pretty cool.

In 2012, research published in Therapeutic Advances in Psychopharmacology described a small study involving 20 people that suggested the scent of rosemary oil may improve speed and accuracy when performing certain mental tasks.
Then in 2013, Northumbria researchers reported at the Annual Conference of the British Psychological Society that putting the scent of rosemary in the air helped people with memory tests.

According to the Northumbria study, not only did participants do better with future memory tasks, but traces of rosemary oil was found in the blood samples as well. Future memory is the type of memory that we all want to improve. It's remembering to take your medicine at a certain time, or remembering to pick up your daughter at the airport next Tuesday, or remembering to get a birthday present for your spouse.

The scientists believe that there are compounds in rosemary oil that may change memory performance. One of them is called 1,8-cineole - it may act in the same way as the drugs licensed to treat dementia, causing an increase in a neurotransmitter called acetylcholine.

These compounds do this by preventing the breakdown of the neurotransmitter by an enzyme. And since inhalation is one of the best ways of getting drugs into the brain, it makes sense that traces were found in the blood of participants. When you eat a drug it may be broken down in the liver, which processes everything absorbed by the gut; but with inhalation, small molecules can pass into the bloodstream and from there to the brain without being broken down by the liver.

Researchers said that, "These findings may have implications for treating individuals with memory impairments. It supports our previous research indicating that the aroma of rosemary essential oil can enhance cognitive functioning in healthy adults, thereby extending to the ability to remember events and to complete tasks in the future. Remembering when and where to go and for what reasons underpins everything we do, and we all suffer minor failings that can be frustrating and sometimes dangerous. Further research is needed to investigate if this treatment is useful for older adults who have experienced memory decline."

I don't know about you, but I love the scent of Rosemary and I plan to put some in the garden this year, keep it hanging around the kitchen year round, hoping it will not only make the room smell great, but assist my memory as well.

Best of Health,

Kathi

Healthy Irish Fare

Irish Hat 1This week is St. Patrick's Day, and being the good Irish girl that I am, I will be joining my son for his favorite Corned Beef and Cabbage dinner. It's the one time all year that I eat corned beef, and only a mouthful at that. This is a cured meat, so very high in sodium. A 3 ounce serving of corned beef contains 827 milligrams of sodium, 36 percent of the Institute of Medicine's daily recommendation! YUK!

The cabbage, on the other hand is a healthy choice. One cup of cabbage provides 3 grams of fiber, high levels of vitamin C, which promotes a healthy immune system, and nearly double the daily recommendation of vitamin K, an essential nutrient for blood clotting! My plate at dinner will have mostly carrots (a fav of mine), cabbage, potatoes and a tiny bite of corned beef.

Another Irish favorite that works better for me than corned beef is Irish stew! Mostly veggies with a bit of any type of meat or poultry that you like, and if you make the broth yourself you can put only a bit of salt in and it tastes much better than those you see on the supermarket shelves. Here is my bone broth recipe:

Hint - Save all your bones in a container in the freezer as you eat the meat or chicken and then when you have enough, make your own broth. You can freeze some if you want to use at a later date, or make a big pot of stew or soup and share!

Ingredients:

2 large onions, cut up

3 – 6 large garlic cloves-

7 celery stalks, cut up

4-6 large carrots, cut up

1 large or 2 small potatoes, cut up

Kale or any other veggie you like

1 tsp olive oil

3-4 bay leaves

Preparation:

Sauté the onion in 1 tsp of olive oil in a big stew pot

Add the carrots and celery and lastly the onions and cook until onions are soft

Fill the pot with your bag of bones and then add enough water to cover the bones

Add the bay leaves, a pinch of salt and pepper.

Bring to a boil over medium heat.

Add the Kale and any other greens lower to a simmer, cover and let it cook for at least 1 hr. Stir occasionally.

Let the broth cool for several hours (you can put the whole pot as is in the fridge overnight if you want.

Then remove all the bones and any grease that may have formed on top, and you’ve got your stock/broth for any time you want some!

Best of Health,

Kathi

Take Care Of YOU!

With all the excitement this month of Irish festivities, preparing for Easter and spring hiking/biking starting earlier this year, please remember to take care of you. The more I teach, and the more clients I see, the more important I realize self-care is. So many people - especially women, forget how important their own health and well being is. For many of us, self care feels more like a fringe benefit than an essential daily practice. This was driven home to me, once again last week, when a friend who took care of everyone in town at one time or another, and who was a truly generous soul with all but herself, had a sudden heart attack and died. She leaves a big hole in her family's and extended family's lives. Please take care of yourself so that you'll be around for a long time for your family and friends!

Exercise, eat healthy foods (not too much...), and do some type of meditation.

And so to start you off, here is a link to one of the breathing practices that I teach every week. It focuses on healing the spine. Just about everything in the body is connected to the spine, so a healthier spine means a healthier body. Relax and BREATHE!

Eat Fat To Get Thin!

AvocadoI am happy to announce my friend and colleague Dr. Mark Hyman's new book, Eat Fat to Get Thin. Yes, you heard that right. Mark is talking about the "good fat," however, not twinkies and triple layer chocolate cake!

In addition to rising rates of obesity, cancer, and diabetes, millions of Americans are suffering from what Mark refers to as "FLC Syndrome" - that's when you feel like crap! What most of us don't know is that this is directly related to the food we eat. Food can harm us or it can heal us.

In his latest book, Dr. Hyman reveals a shocking new medical discovery that turns our understanding of why we get fat and sick completely upside down.

So what is this shocking discovery?

Turns out, if you eat more FAT, you get thin (and reverse heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and more). In other words, just about everything we've been told about fat is wrong. Which is why Dr. Hyman has created a powerful Q&A video to celebrate the launch of his new book, Eat Fat, Get Thin. Watch the FREE Q&A Video here.

In this video, Mark answers questions like:

If it's not fat, what is the true cause of heart disease, diabetes, and disease?

How can we easily differentiate between good and bad fats?

Is butter really good for you?

And how did we get into this big, fat mess?

Over 1,000 people participated in his testing of the Eat Fat, Get Thin 21-Day Plan outlined in this book. The results were powerful. Participants shed weight (as much as 46 pounds!), reduced blood sugar (an average of 23 points), and reported a 69% decrease in ALL symptoms from chronic diseases. Isn't it your turn?

If you're ready to lose those stubborn extra pounds, have more energy immediately, and learn how to prevent or even reverse chronic disease naturally, you won't want to miss this book.

Watch the video (PLUS discover how you can get your copy of Dr. Hyman's new book and receive up to 9 not-to-be-missed bonus gifts!)  
Best of Health,

Kathi

Heart Healthy Recipe For Your Valentine!

IMG_0547[1]

 

Wild Salmon with Rosemary, Sweet Potatoes & Lemon Asparagus (from Dr. Mark Hyman's Blood Sugar Solution)

 

 

 

Ingredients:

1 sweet potato, peeled and sliced

1 yellow onion, sliced

2 Tblsp extra virgin olive oil

Sea salt

1 garlic clove (I love garlic and use 3!)

2 tsp dry mustard

Juice and zest of 1 small lemon (I also sometimes use lime)

1 Tblsp chopped fresh rosemary

1 bunch asparagus

8 oz. skin on, wild caught salmon

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 425o
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place the sweet potato and onion slices on the paper in a single layer. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Bake for 15 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, mix the garlic, mustard, lemon juice, and rosemary to make a paste and set aside.
  • Remove baking sheet from oven, place the asparagus on the parchment next to the onions and sweet potatoes. Sprinkle the lemon zest on the asparagus. Lay the salmon on top of the asparagus and onions. Spread the mustard paste on top of the salmon.
  • Return the sheet to the oven and bake for 12 minutes. Salmon is done when the flesh flakes with gentle pressure. Serve the salmon on top of the veggies as is.

Now feel your mouth and heart smile... 

Top 7 Health and Wellness Advances in 2015

It's always fun at the beginning of a new year to look back on achievements from the previous year. Not just personally, but also in the world at large. So today, I'm sharing one that I am proud of, as well as looking at health and wellness milestones in general for 2015.

Ned Thru Hole for BookI am grateful that my Amazon bestselling book STOP Back Pain! has remained steadily on Amazon bestseller lists in all it's categories! FOUR years on the bestseller lists is a huge accomplishment!

 

In the world at large this past year, these are my choices for Top 7 advances in health and medicine. Some of these sound like science fiction from my childhood!

The Saving Mothers, Giving Life partnership announced, at the first-ever Maternal Newborn Health Conference in October, a nearly 50 percent reduction in maternal mortality in target facilities in Uganda and Zambia.

Australian researchers have come up with a non-invasive ultrasound technology that clears the brain of neurotoxic amyloid plaques - structures that are responsible for memory loss and a decline in cognitive function in Alzheimer's patients. If a person has Alzheimer's disease, it's usually the result of a build-up of two types of lesions - amyloid plaques, and neurofibrillary tangles. Most of us Boomers are all too aware that Alzheimer's affects 50 million people worldwide, and we are all concerned about this terrible disease. It's been a race to figure out how best to treat it, starting with how to clear the build-up of defective beta-amyloid and tau proteins from a patient's brain. In 2015, a team from the Queensland Brain Institute (QBI) have come up with a very promising solution. Published in Science Translational Medicine, the team describes the technique as using a particular type of ultrasound called afocused therapeutic ultrasound, which non-invasively beams sound waves into the brain tissue. By oscillating super-fast, these sound waves are able to gently open up the blood-brain barrier (a layer that protects the brain against bacteria), and stimulate the brain's microglial cells to activate. Microglila cells are basically waste-removal cells, so they're then able to clear out the toxic beta-amyloid clumps that are responsible for the worst symptoms of Alzheimer's. The team reports fully restoring the memory function of 75 percent of the mice they tested it on, with zero damage to the surrounding brain tissue. They found that the treated mice displayed improved performance in three memory tasks - a maze, a test to get them to recognize new objects, and one to get them to remember the places they should avoid. They are hopeful that this treatment will be available for us aging Boomers as soon as 2017.

A new advancement in breast cancer radiation therapy, called intraoperative radiation therapy (IORT), shows great promise. Used successfully for decades with a different type of radiation therapy as part of treatment for abdominal cancers, a new type of IORT is now being used to deliver high doses of radiation during lumpectomies, concentrated only in the cavity where tumors were removed. After excising the tumor and surrounding tissue from the breast, radiation is delivered through an applicator directly to the former tumor's site, where the risk of cancer recurrence is highest. This focused radiation does no damage to the heart or lungs, which often happens with whole breast radiation. After about 30 minutes of treatment, the applicator is removed. Based on the results of a large clinical trial, focusing the radiation on the tumor bed, IORT has been shown to be as effective as whole breast radiation for selected patients with early stage breast cancer. The study also showed the risk of skin toxicity is decreased after IORT, compared to conventional radiation therapy. Also, IORT costs significantly less than standard whole breast radiation. And with fewer trips to the hospital for radiation therapy and less time spent in treatment, this therapy provides a significant boost to the quality of life for patients with early stage breast cancer.

Doctors at Duke University have successfully re-engineered the polio virus to treat brain tumors by removing a key genetic sequence. This genetically engineered polio virus, PVS-RIPO, is not unlike other experimental treatments in the past using HIV, measles, and smallpox. Unlike these other diseases, researchers from Duke found that polio actually seeks out and attaches itself to receptors that can be found on almost every solid tumor. Not only was this re-engineered polio virus successful in seeking out and poisoning cancerous cells, but it also steered clear of normal cells While PVS-RIPO has been in the works for the past 25 years, groundbreaking steps in this potential cancer treatment were made in 2015, which included eradication of tumors in certain patients. The Food and Drug Administration is expected to make its decision on "breakthrough status" for this treatment in 2016.

2015 was a big year for 3D printing. Using 3D printing and 3D imaging techniques, researchers from several universities developed a 3D-printed guide that can help regrow the sensory and motor functions of a rat's nerves after an injury, effectively giving them the ability to regenerate damaged nerves. When a 54-year-old cancer patient from Spain needed a portion of his rib cage and his entire sternum replaced, he didn't have many options. Not too many living donors are willing or able to part with either of those. Even if they were, everybody is different, so finding one that would fit was problematic. So, the minds at Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO), designed a 3D printed titanium rib cage and sternum that fit perfectly and it saved his life. Similarly, "Han Han" - a 3-year-old girl in China, suffering from a rare condition that resulted in her head growing four times its normal size, was saved by 3D printing. To prevent potentially harmful pressures on the tissues of the brain, Han Han underwent a 17 hour operation, which was considered the world's first full skull reconstruction surgery using 3D printing technology. The surgical team used 3D imaging and 3D printing to create a new titanium skull that repositioned her brain and prevented future complications. Sounds like something out of Star Trek, doesn't it!

Chronic lymphocytic leukemia, or C.L.L., is a common blood cancer. It is typically indolent, initially, but then it can accelerate, causing debility and death as it clogs the liver, spleen, and bone marrow, choking off the normal production of blood cells. The classic approach to treating C.L.L. is to poison malignant cells with chemotherapy, a treatment with modest benefit, whose effects usually wane over the course of a year or so. In the past decade, scientists have been exploring how cells communicate with one another, receiving signals from outside, and transmitting them, through a cascade of molecules, into their interiors. Targeting these molecules can make a treatment more specific and less toxic. In December, in the New England Journal of Medicine, a group of oncologists reported the success of such a strategy with C.L.L. They demonstrated that a drug called ibrutinib, which interferes with the signaling molecule, BTK, produced impressive remissions in patients with C.L.L. The effects also tended to last beyond the end of the clinical trial, with rare relapses. A challenge with many cancers is that they have redundant systems of communication; when one pathway is severed, another can still pass along the messages that allow the cancer to grow and divide. Sometimes, though, as in the case of ibrutinib, disconnecting a single network leads to dramatic improvement. Dramatic improvement in the treatment of any cancer is a good thing in my book!

A new, painless, more accurate, faster, and significantly less expensive blood testing method has been developed by the company, Theranos. Gone are the big needles and vials, replaced instead by a proprietary software and hardware technology that uses a mere drop of blood from the end of your finger! The blood sample is wicked into a special nanotainer, which holds the equivalent amount of a raindrop. It's then shipped to a special CLIA-certified laboratory, where hundreds of different tests can now be performed from that one drop of blood, from standard cholesterol checks to sophisticated genetic analyses. Blood results are then sent back to the requesting physician in a matter of hours. When further testing is needed, it can be done immediately, again with the same tiny blood sample. This new testing, which can be collected at a local participating pharmacy as well as a doctor's office, comes at a mere fraction of the cost of traditional blood testing methods. In some cases, these new tests will cost as little as 10 percent of the traditional Medicare reimbursement. That IS good news!

Best of Health,

Kathi

Arsenic and Old… Rice?!

Man planting seeds in a spring garden

During one of my presentations on nutrition, recently, I was asked about the concern of high levels of arsenic in rice. Since this was not a topic I was familiar with, I promised to do some research and write about this topic in a future post. The results are included here for your information. Please share.

Arsenic is a natural mineral in the earth's crust. Arsenic has also been released into the environment through the use of pesticides and poultry fertilizer, therefore, it's in our soil and water. I was quite surprised when I looked into this. I used to live on the Chesapeake Bay in Maryland, in a county with high levels of arsenic in the water, so I was very cautious about filtering. Unfortunately, rice tends to absorb arsenic more readily than many other plants. I had no idea at that time about the levels of arsenic in rice.

So the rice, especially the brown rice which Ned and I were consuming 5 out of 7 days a week, is high in arsenic. Organically-grown and conventional rice both contain arsenic and regular exposure to small amounts of arsenic can increase the risk of bladder, lung, and skin cancer, as well as heart disease and type 2 diabetes. Perhaps if they'd known this when they made the movie "Arsenic and Old Lace" the old ladies could have served rice wine! But arsenic levels in rice appear to vary based on the variety and the region where it is grown. White rice -- particularly basmati, jasmine and pre-cooked "instant" rice -- tends to have lower concentrations of arsenic than brown rice because arsenic accumulates in rice bran. Rice varieties grown in California or imported from Southeast Asia are often lower in arsenic than rice grown in other parts of the U.S.

In the FDA's recent analysis of approximately 1,300 samples, they found average levels of inorganic arsenic for the various rice and rice products of 0.1 to 7.2 micrograms of arsenic per serving. Serving sizes varied depending on the rice product they tested. For example, one serving of non-Basmati rice equals one cup cooked, whereas one serving of a rice-based snack bar contains only ¼ cup of rice.

I checked the brand that we use, (Lundberg) since it is from California and was pleased that the company CEO addressed this concern on their website. They test each year and have kept their arsenic levels lower than the international (CODEX) standards. CODEX, a joint commission of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and the World Health Organization, has adopted a standard for acceptable arsenic levels in rice:  it recommends that governments allow no more than 200 parts of arsenic per billion in white or "polished" rice and no more than 400 parts per billion in brown rice. The European Food Safety Authority has discussed a more restrictive limit of 100 parts per billion of arsenic in foods marketed for infants and children, because children have shown to be more sensitive to arsenic than adults, but it has not come to a final determination. The CODEX recommendations are not meant to imply that 200 or 400 parts per billion of arsenic in rice is safe. Rather, the international body aimed to encourage regulators of individual governments to ban rice with higher concentrations of arsenic from the market.

My plan is to eat less rice. This is what both the EWG and Consumer Reports recommend. I'm now using quinoa several times a week in place of rice. I like the taste, it's a safer grain, and it's also higher in protein.

Links to several reports mentioned here are included so you can do further research yourself if you wish. I did not have enough room here to discuss the many rice products, sugars, etc., in our grocery baskets, but most processed foods contain rice, so your total intake may be higher than you think. Be on the lookout for alternatives to rice-based processed foods like breakfast cereals, rice flour, rice pasta, cakes and crackers. Consumer demand for gluten-free alternatives to wheat-based processed foods has spurred a proliferation of rice-based products, but they're not our only option. Low-arsenic grains include barley, faro, couscous, and bulgur wheat. If you are avoiding gluten, consider amaranth, buckwheat, millet, quinoa, oats, cornmeal, grits, and polenta. Read labels carefully and investigate products with these alternative grains.

And thank you to the ladies of Cancer House of Hope for asking this question! An informed public is a healthier public!

Best of Health

Kathi

Goals, Resolutions or Intentions?

YogavilleThis is the time of year when we look at our goals from last year, see how we did, make new ones for the new year, and then formulate a plan for making it all happen. I'm very glad to have this process, especially this year. Last week I thought I hadn't done very well on my goals for 2015 and I was feeling a bit down in the mouth about it (yes, I am not always Pollyanna). But when I pulled them out and compared, I had met or exceeded most of those goals and only failed meet two of them! That brought the smile back to my face. I usually set business goals as well as health, relationship, and personal goals each year; a few in each category, to keep learning and evolving. 

I have an accountability partner and we go over our goals with each other at the beginning of the year and check in again at the end of each quarter. In 2015, we did something a bit different. We set intentions and then made our goals encompass these intentions. This was something suggested by Deepak Chopra. His four suggested mantras for those intentions were:

  • I have a joyful, energetic body.
  • I have a loving, compassionate heart.
  • I have a restful, alert mind.
  • I have lightness of being. 
  •  

These worked out pretty well, because a joyful energetic body is one that gets enough exercise, proper nutrition and sleep. A loving compassionate heart takes care of self and others. An alert mind is active and constantly learning, and all of these make for a lightness of being.

So, perhaps instead of making resolutions this year, you can set these four intentions for yourself. Write them down on a 3x5 card and keep them where you'll see them each day, to remind yourself. Then let me know at the end of 2016 how much better you feel! 

Best of Health,

Kathi 

How To Make Chaga Tea

Chaga Tea tastes a bit like coffee. In fact, when I add a little almond milk, it tastes just like the hazelnut coffee that I used to drink years ago.

If you want to read about the benefits of Chaga, check this recent post.  This post also has a short video of our gathering expedition so you can see what it looks like on the trees and a bit about harvesting it. Much more info is available through that know-it-all Google...

chaga big platter full with Ned and Kathi2

So many of my readers asked for more information, so here you go!

To Make Chaga Tea:

Take a piece about the size of a softball and smash it up into very small chunks. We used an old piece of jean material to place the conks in, covered them within the cloth and then pounded them with a hammer. The jean fabric doesn't tear as easily as others so this method worked for us.

This amount will make 2 cups a day - enough for one cup each for 2 people for about a month.

Place those chunks in a glass or stainless pot filled with water and bring to almost boiling. Simmer for about ten mintues, then remove from heat and strain some into a cup. Enjoy!

You can either leave that pot on the stove and continue to add water each day, or you can strain the whole pot into a jar that you use for your daily cup until it's gone, letting the Chaga chunks dry in between cooking. Then when your jar is empty, put the chunks back into the pot fill with water again and heat.

Each time, you'll need to cook the chunks for a little longer - maybe fifteen or twenty minutes more until you get the same dark color and the flavor you like.

Best of Health,

Kathi

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