Archive for January, 2015

The link between a healthy gut & happiness

Friday, January 16th, 2015

The Power of Pre-Biotics

You’ve probably heard that probiotics are good bacteria that are essential for your gut to be healthy and digest food optimally. You can take a probiotic supplement or eat foods like sauerkraut, yogurt, or miso that will increase the amount of these essential bacteria.

But have you heard about prebiotics?

Prebiotics are what feed the good bacteria and cause them to multiply, helping your digestion and your immune system function. You can get prebiotics from foods like raw dandelion greens, raw Jerusalem artichokes, and raw chicory roots.

But here’s a new twist: those prebiotics might make you happier too!
New research on humans suggests a connection between a healthy gut and lower anxiety, and that prebiotics lower cortisol levels, a stress hormone that has been linked to weight gain. Perhaps building and maintaining healthy gut bacteria is the next step in treating mental health, hormonal imbalances, and weight management.

For a recap of the study and conclusions read this Huffington Post article.

Episodes of gas, bloating, and lactose intolerance has decreased significantly, even when I eat foods I know are a problem for me. Small amounts no longer send me over the edge!

Nothing eclipses a healthy diet high in raw plant food, but careful supplementation can certainly help. I’ve been taking a pre/pro-biotic/digestive enzyme blend called Eaze since July. I reduced most of my digestive issues and food sensitivities through diet changes, but oh how I wish I’d been introduced to a pre/probiotic/enzyme combination earlier!

For a list of the different strains of pro/prebiotics in Eaze click HERE
To order click  HERE or contact me at jennifer@food2live4.com.


Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars

Wednesday, January 7th, 2015

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I’ve found several great recipes for Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars, but the trick is minimizing the coconut oil flavor so that non-raw and non-vegan eaters will love them as well. I’ve tweaked some standard recipes, using avocado and coconut BUTTER in place of some of the coconut oil. The consistency is creamy, and the flavor is a favorite with my vegan AND non vegan taste testers!

Crust
1 ½ cups almond meal
1/3 cup natural cocoa powder
¼ cup agave, maple syrup, or coconut nectar
2 tablespoons melted coconut OIL

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Filling
1 cup creamy peanut butter
6 tablespoons maple syrup
2 tablespoons melted coconut BUTTER
¼ tsp sea salt

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Topping
½ cup natural cocoa powder
¼ cup melted coconut BUTTER
¼ cup mashed avocado (about ½ of a small avocado)
6 tablespoons agave, maple syrup, or coconut nectar
¼ tsp vanilla extract

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Line an eight-inch square baking dish with parchment paper, making sure to leave some over hang on two ends.
In a medium bowl, combine the crust ingredients until a dough is formed. Press into the bottom of the baking dish.
Combine the filling ingredients and spread over the crust. Place in the freezer to set.

Combine the topping ingredients in a high-speed blender and blend until smooth. Spread over the peanut butter layer. Cover the pan and freeze for about an hour until firm.

Lift the solid bar from pan using the edges of the parchment paper. Cut into small pieces and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.