Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Another Great Garlic Recipe

My partner has a collection, a rather large collection, of shot glasses. He's not really that big on drinking shots, but just picks them up when he travels. We also have a refrigerator covered in magnets from places near and far. Now he's moving on to masks and objects d'art for our house. With all that going on, I have to be careful what I bring home from my travels. One of my favorite things to collect while traveling are recipes. The following recipe is adapted from the Parsley Garlic Relish from the Stinking Rose Restaurant in San Francisco. I've made it for years and enjoy it on crusty bread, with any meat dish, with pasta or even by the spoonful. Bon appetite!

Parsley-Garlic Dip

Parsley 2 Bunches - for variety, try 1 bunch flat and 1 bunch curled
Cilantro 1 Bunch
Garlic 4-10 cloves to taste - start on the low end and work your way up
Olive oil - 2 Tbsp-1/2 cup - start with less, taste and adjust upwards - the amount of oil will also vary based on how you want to use the dip.
White vinegar - about 2 Tbsp
Rice vinegar - about 1 Tbsp
Salt - 1 tsp+ to taste
Pepper - 1 tsp+ to taste
Brown sugar (optional) - 2 tsp

Finely chop or food process greens and garlic. Mix all ingredients well. Serve at room temperature with meat, on crackers, mixed with beans dishes or pasta.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Garlic is Not Just For Repelling Vampires

I just read a great article in the New York Times confirming what my grandfather told me 30 years ago that GARLIC will repel colds and flu's. I'd rather smell of GARLIC than have a long lasting flu infection. GARLIC'S component allicin plays a role in fighting bacterial and viral infections. The first recordings of GARLIC used medicinally dated back 5000 years in Southwest Siberia. Hipocrates (460 BCE) used garlic for a variety of infections and intestinal disorders. There are many other uses medicinally for GARLIC - lowering serum cholesterol and triglycerides (Arun Bordia, MD Cardiologist) assists the body in dissolving clots and reduces high blood pressure. Amazingly interferes with the transformation of normal cells into cancer cells (Lau MD, PhD - microbiologist).

Dosing the amazing bulb: one clove a day keeps the doctor away. Fresh, local and organic is always the best. Break one clove away from the bulb and crush it which releases the peel and activates the healing properties (the enzyme allinase comes in contact with alliin which converts to allicin which converts further to diallydisulphide the antibacterial sulfur fragrant compound). Then chop, dice or squeeze the whole herb. Add GARLIC to eggs in the morning, salads at lunch , soups at dinner it can be eaten any time of day. GARLIC comes in many usable forms, raw cloves, dried powder, oil extract, capsules, tincture, juice (1/2 teaspoon thinned with water up to three times daily (Lust) and syrups. Recipe for the H1N1 epidemic:

Dr. Ziment's Garlic Chicken Soup for Colds and Coughs

1 quart homemade chicken broth
1 garlic head (15 cloves) peeled
5 parsley sprigs, minced
6 cilantro sprigs, minced
1 teaspoon lemon pepper
1 teaspoon minced fresh mint leaves
1 teaspoon dried basil, crushed or 1 tablespoon chopped fresh
1 teaspoon curry powder
hot red pepper flakes to taste, sliced carrots, bay leaves (optional)
Place all ingredients in a pan without a lid. Bring to a boil, then simmer 30 minutes
Strain soup blend up the solids to a puree and return to the soup
Sever hot be sure to inhale the aroma during preparation (lung hydrotherapy)
just don't cough into and don't forget to wash your hands!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Warming Sock Treatment

It feels so good to be back at home in the Pacific Northwest. I spent 10 days this month traveling in Illinois, Indiana and Michigan visiting family and friends. During my trip, I got to talk a lot about acupuncture and naturopathic medicine as these therapies are not so common there. We're really lucky to have a naturopathic school in Portland and have so much access to powerful, natural remedies. One of the treatments I found myself describing often was the Warming Sock Treatment.

I prescribe the Warming Sock Treatment or the Warming Throat Compress fairly often for common colds, head and/or chest colds, sinus infections, sore throat, insomnia or circulation problems and sometimes even as a tonifying treatment. For colds and flu, this treatment will often help me feel better in one night, although it is recommended to repeat the treatment several nights in a row for best results. This treatment increases circulation, bringing immune system cells into contact with infectious antigens and often increasing the body's temperature to fight infection thermogenically.

When I feel the first signs of a cold coming on, I often do this treatment in conjunction with immune boosting herbs and vitamins and don't end up getting sick. Try it the next time you're feeling a seasonal bug and see how it works for you.

Warming Sock Treatment Instructions
1. Be Warm
You should be warm, dry and comfortable before doing this treatment. Some people take a warm shower or warm foot bath before starting their treatment. This is especially important if your feet feel cold or you tend to be chilly. A warm cup of tea, soup or broth will also help from the inside out.

2. Wet Cotton Socks
Wet a pair of thin cotton socks and wring out excess liquid. I suggest using anklets so that only the foot is wet or wetting only the foot portion of a longer sock. When you first start this treatment, you may like to use tepid water to wet the socks, but as you get used to it, you can use cooler water temperatures for a more intense experience. Put the damp socks on.

3. Dry Wool Socks
Put on a pair of wool socks over the damp cotton socks. Thick hiking socks of other fibers also work, but breathability is very important.

4. Go to Bed - Stay Warm
Put on your warm pajamas and get into bed. Use plenty of blankets so that you stay warm and do not get chilled during this treatment.

In the morning, you should note that your socks are dry and hopefully that you feel a bit better! If you have a sore throat from illness, exposure or even too much speaking, try this modification:

Warming Throat Compress
1. Be Warm
2. Dampen a bandanna - wrap around neck.
3. Wrap a dry scarf around neck, covering bandnna.
4. Go to bed - Stay Warm.

Feel free to share your experiences with the Warming Sock Treatment or Warming Throat Compress in the comments section!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Getting Ready For Bed

Do you have a ritual that you go through each night before you go to bed? Or do you fall asleep while reading or watching television at various times of night? Do you notice the difference in how you sleep when you prepare for bed versus falling asleep unplanned? I wouldn't be surprised to hear that you do - having a regular routine of things we do before going to bed can have the effect of preparing our body for sleep, in much the same way that seeing and smelling food starts the process of digestion.

Your "getting ready for bed" ritual can and should be unique to you, but a couple of things that all bedtime rituals should include for optimal health and sleep hygiene are:
  • Removing make up and washing your face
  • Brushing and flossing your teeth
  • No caffeine or sugary food or drink past a certain time or after brushing
  • Turn off the television and stimulating music

Turning off the television and avoiding caffeine before bed are common sense, but we don't always do what our common sense dictates. I occasionally get caught up in a late night crime drama on television before going to bed, which often results in a restless night. Avoiding these and even stimulating music allows our parasympathetic nervous system (rest and digest functions) to kick in and for natural sleep to occur.

What about washing your face, brushing and flossing? Also seems like common sense - most parents make their children do this every night before bed. But it's also vitally important for adult health and most important to do before going to bed at night. At night, our mouths are drier. With no salivary enzymes to kills them and no food and drink to pass them through to our digestive tract, bacteria growth overnight is high. Brushing and especially flossing helps remove the last traces of food and sugar that fuel these bacteria before we go to bed. Removing these substances also helps prevent the accumulation of tarter.

Likewise, washing your face before bed clears off environmental exposures, make up and excess oil before going to bed, allowing your skin to breath and regenerate. Many of the body's healing and regenerative functions occur overnight in response to hormonal events precipitated by sleep. But these functions can be hampered when the surface of the skin is covered or coated with dirt, oil, make up and even night creams.

Try practicing a bedtime routine for a week or so and see how it affects your sleep. Turn off the TV/radio or turn on some light classical or instrumental music, turn down the lights, clean up and put on your pj's and get a great night's sleep.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

New Feature: Subscribe to Our Blog!

If you're enjoying our posts, you can now subscribe to receive them by email. Simply enter your email address in the box at the right and click subscribe. Respond to the confirmation email and you'll be all set to get the latest tips, recipes and advise from the doctors at True Health Medicine.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Office Closed for Holiday Weekend

True Health Medicine will be closed from Thursday September 3rd at 1pm until Tuesday September 9th at 9am for the Labor Day holiday weekend. Please feel free to leave us a message at 503-691-0901 and we'll get back to you next week.

I'm heading out camping for the holiday weekend and have been working hard all week to plan for a healthy movable feast for the long weekend. In addition to many fresh fruits and vegetables for snacks, I hit upon the idea of making and bringing a new snack favorite for a crunchy, salty treat for the weekend. If you haven't yet learned to love kale, consider these kale chips a different food altogether and try them! Before these (and a raw kale salad from Raw Food Made Easy by Jennifer Cornbleet), I ate my kale because it was good for me - now I eat it because I love it!

Sundried Tomato Kale Chips
Amounts are approximate, adjust seasonings to taste.
Note: for best results, a dehydrator is needed.

1-2 bunches kale
1/2-1 cup sundried tomatoes
1/4 cup tahini
1-2 cup nut or rice milk or tomato soak water
1 Tbsp oregano
1-2 Tbsp basil
2 tsp sea salt
1 Tbsp black pepper
1-2 Tbsp nutritional yeast
(available in the bulk department at New Seasons, also delicious on toast or popcorn)

Soak sundried tomatoes in enough water to cover. While tomatoes are soaking, prepare kale. Rinse kale and cut out central vein. I have left this in before, but we usually ended up eating around it, so I cut it out now for easier eating. If the vein doesn't extend to the tip, you can also cut off the end of the kale (up to where the vein starts to get thick) as a separate chip. These "tip chips" are always my favorite. Usually after cutting out the vein, you're left with two halves. I cut these in half again for chips that are about 1/4 the size of the original leaf. You could also cut them smaller.

By the time you finish preparing the kale, the sundried tomatoes will have soaked long enough. Mix tomatoes, tahini, spices and 1/2 liquid (rice/nut milk or soak water) in blender until tomatoes are well blended. Pour mixture into bowl. You may add the remaining liquid now or as you go. Mix well.

The next step is to get the tomato mixture onto the kale leaves and there are many ways to accomplish this. You can pour many leave into the mixture and mix with a spoon or clean hands or you can put the leaves in one at a time. In any event, you will likely be removing the kale from the mixture and squeezing off excess dressing with your hands. You want the kale to be covered with the dressing on both surfaces without using it all up on a couple of leaves. After dehydrating, the flavor is more concentrated, so it doesn't take much dressing per leaf. As you get to the bottom of the dressing bowl, you may need to add more liquid, even water, to thin and extend the dressing. Use a spatula to scrap down the sides of the bowl, too. I have not found that "marinating" for any length of time is necessary - just cover the leaves by whatever method you prefer and then lay the leaves out on a dehydrator tray.

Depending on your dehydrator, it may take more or less time for the chips to be ready. It takes mine about 4 hours until they are mostly dry. If I'm eating them pretty soon, I may even leave them slightly moist (still dry and crispy, but not completely dried out). If you don't have a dehydrator, you can also try baking these in a low oven. I would set the oven as low as it will go and either leave it slightly open or pulse the oven on and off to keep the temperature low as it doesn't take much heat for these to dry.

These are my favorite, but you can also make them with any other dressing you can think of. I've even made them with apple cider vinegar and salt and they were delicious! There's no limit - enjoy!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Reminder: Last Raw Food Talk!

Don't miss our last Raw Food Talk of the summer season. Tomorrow, Thursday August 27 at 7pm at New Seasons Market Happy Valley. Call 503.558.9214 to reserve your spot today.

Our other raw food talks have been well-attended with great feedback from people with no experience in raw food to people who have made and enjoyed raw gourmet meals. We discuss the health benefits of raw food and how to get started with this fresh, live, wheat and sugar free cuisine. This Thursday, we'll be teaching in the Happy Valley cooking school, so we'll be doing a live demo showing how quick and easy it is to make a raw dessert.

If you're interested in raw diet/cuisine and can't make it to this talk, please send us a note or leave a comment. Dr. Devo will be teaching some raw un-cooking classes starting in January and we'd be happy to send you a reminder when that is on the schedule!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Shepard's Pie (Vegetarian Option)

I signed up for a farm share through a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program this summer and have been getting a bag of farm fresh produce every week throughout the summer. It's been a challenge keeping up with everything, so I've been trying to come up with ideas for how to use a lot of the veggies all at once. This Shepard's Pie helped me use up a lot of the farm produce and so, get a lot of vegetables into one meal!

I tend to think of Shepard's Pie as a fall or winter meal, because it is so hardy, but the fresh herbs and beans kept it light and fresh tasting. Enjoy!

Shepard's Pie
Top Layer: Mashed Potatoes
I've gotten pretty creative with my mashed potato recipes - starting with adding onions and garlic, I've gone all the way to adding basil and balsamic vinegar. For this dish, I used what was at hand and was pleased with the results, but make the mashed potatoes your favorite way!

4 red potatoes
1 leek, thoroughly cleaned and chopped
1-2 Tbsp olive oil
handful fresh basil
milk or soy milk - used to blend to preferred consistency

Chop and boil red potatoes, leaving skins on. Drain and set aside. Saute leek in olive oil for about 5 minutes. Mix potatoes, leeks and milk - use electric mixer and more milk for smooth consistency or hand-masher and less milk for a thicker texture. Mix in chopped basil and salt and pepper to taste.

Middle Layer: Veggie Medley
Any veggies will do for the middle layer - in the past, I've used a bag of frozen mixed veggies with corn, green beans and peas. For this summer version, I used fresh green beans, yellow wax beans, carrot and yellow summer squash. Wash and trim green beans, wax beans, carrot and squash. Slice carrot and squash into coin shapes and cut green and wax beans into 1 inch pieces. Steam together.

Bottom Layer: Meat Layer
1/2 pound ground Buffalo or organic grass fed beef
1-2 cups of vegetarian grounds
2 vegetarian burger patties (I used 2 Amy's original burger patties, warmed up and then broken into pieces)

2-4 Tbsp chopped or minced onion (optional)
2-4 Tbsp chopped peppers - use mildly spicy peppers for a great flavor (I used the small wrinkled Italian variety - they are mildly spicy, but very flavorful and it made the meat(less) layer a big hit!)
1 cup chopped cherry/grape tomatoes

Lightly saute onions and peppers, add meat or vegetarian crumbles/patties. Cook until done, add chopped tomatoes, turn off heat and put a lid on for 5 minutes or until ready to assemble. This will lightly cook the tomatoes and help blend the flavors.

Assembly: It couldn't get any easier than pouring each layer into a casserole dish in order. Individual ramekins would also be a great way to serve this dish. Everything is already cooked fully, so it doesn't really need to bake, but you can either keep it warm in a low oven or let it bake a little to crisp the top. We ate this one night as is (with a little salt and pepper to taste) and added a little cheddar cheese on top the next - both ways were delicious. Enjoy!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Thanks for Stopping By!

Thanks to everyone who stopped by our booth at the Tualatin Crawfish Festival.
We had a great time and enjoyed meeting so many members of our community.
If you didn't have time to stop by and get your questions answered,
please send us a note or give us a call - we'd be happy to talk to you.


Thursday, August 6, 2009

Tualatin Crawfish Festival

Top 10 Reasons to Attend the 2009 Tualatin Crawfish Festival
10. Hot Rod Show
9. Kayak rides in the lake
8. 5K Run/Walk
7. Skateboard Show/Competition
6. Dog fashion show, Atsa My Dawg Show, K-9 Demonstration
5. Photography contest
4. Dancing Impala and Indian Folk Dance Demonstrations
3. Crawfish, crawfish and more crawfish, including
a cook-off and eating contests
2. Come say "Howdy" to your favorite local naturopaths at the
True Health Medicine booth!
1. A great time in our community together!
There really is something for everyone at the Crawfish Festival. Bring the whole family for a great day at this Wild West Fest. For more information, click here.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Out and About

It's summer and we're out and about town. In addition to our booths at nearby community events, the doctors of True Health Medicine are continuing our speaking schedule. Tonight at 7pm at New Seasons Market Orenco Station, Dr. Jeff Clark is speaking on Healthy Weight Loss and Maintenance.

Whether you feel you're at your ideal weight or you'd like to lose a few (or more) pounds, you'll likely learn something valuable from this course. We'll cover what ideal weight is and why it matters, how your weight is related to disease risk and lifespan, complicating factors that might make it hard to lose weight and how medically assisted weight loss can help.

RSVP 503.648.6968
Cost: Free

Address: New Seasons Market, Orenco Station
1453 NE 61st Avenue, Hillsboro, OR 97124

Friday, July 31, 2009

Wilsonville Fun in the Park

True Health Medicine is participating in Wilsonville's Fun in the Park event this Saturday from 10am to 5pm at the Wilsonville Town Center Park. Come see us at our booth to learn more about naturopathic medicine or acupuncture. Enter for a chance to win a massage, acupuncture treatment or non-surgical face lift and tone treatment. We hope to see you at the park!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Great Summer Salad Recipe

In these days of over 100 degree temperatures, turning on the oven or even the stove does not seem like a good idea. To keep cool, I've been eating fresh fruit for breakfast and packing simple salads for lunch. Just a little cutting and I'm ready to go. These are some of the simplest and most satisfying meals and are highly nutritious without being heavy. It's essential when it's too hot to eat much that what we put into our bodies provides us with the fuel and nutrients we need. Try this simple bean salad or make yourself a green salad with your other favorite vegetables to keep yourself cool.

Simple Bean Salad
1 can organic garbanzo beans
1 can organic dark red kidney beans
1-2 organic cucumbers
1 pint organic cherry or grape tomatoes
2-3 tbsp mild rice vinegar
1-2 tbsp your choice of fresh herbs, minced (optional) - I like mint, parsley, chives or cilantro for a fresh taste!
1-2 tbsp your choice of seeds (optional) - My favorite are small seeds like white or black sesame or hemp seeds.

Drain and rinse both types of beans. With the skin on, chop the cucumber into small pieces. In this salad, I don't find the skin to be problematic, but if you hate the skin, try peeling only 1/2 the cucumber and leaving the skin on 1/2 to keep some of the valuable nutrients in the skin. Cut tomatoes in halves. Add beans, tomatoes and cucumber to large mixing bowl. Add rice vinegar, optional herbs and seeds and mix. Enjoy!

A few other tips for dealing with heat:
  • Drink plenty of water, but remember to drink some fluids with electrolytes as well. Small amounts of Emergen-C, Vitamin Water, Gatoraid or similar products can help keep your electrolytes balanced if you are sweating a lot in the heat.
  • While keeping cool, remember not to over-air condition your home, car or office. Adapting from ambient temperatures in the 60's to the 100's can be difficult for your body to adjust to.
  • Be cautious with air conditioning if you tend towards sinus infections. A/C can dry out your sinuses and cause an increase in symptoms.
  • Additionally, try not have fans blowing on the back of your neck, especially while you are sleeping. Many acupuncture points on the back of your neck are known as "wind points" and intense wind exposure at these points can lead to symptoms of common cold.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Have you got Rhythm?

I found this interesting article on rhythms and it got me thinking about my own rhythms. I tend to be an early to bed-early to rise person with regular mealtimes, but without much "downtime" (or "build up time" as they call it in the article) or recreation. You see, for the past year, since True Health first acquired our current clinic location in Tualatin, I've been working 6-7 days per work. Part time at a side job and part time at the clinic. I've taken a few vacations to try to catch up on my rest, but usually returned feeling like I needed a vacation from my vacation.

My body gave me a good wake up call last month when I threw my back out and realized, oh yeah, my health is my number one priority and this is not healthy. So, I'm making a change.
Starting July 20th, I'll be taking patient appointments Monday through Thursday (hours by appointment). Though I'm expanding my hours at True Health, I'm decreasing the number of days and the total hours that I'm working overall by releasing my side job. That, along with my morning Tai ji practice and some dance classes, should be a great start to getting myself back in rhythm!

  • What's the rhythm of your day like? Does it vary a lot? Is it in alignment with nature's rhythms?
  • What's your number one priority? If health isn't number one for you right now, where does it fall in the list?
  • What habits do you have that are in alignment with your priorities? What habits do you have that are out of alignment with your priorities?

Monday, July 6, 2009

Tai Ji (Tai Chi)

I started this morning with the first in a series of Tai Ji* review courses. After several days of intense heat, we had a lovely cool morning in which to practice tai ji. I studied tai ji theory, health benefits and the practice while I was in medical school and practiced daily in the weeks before taking (and passing!) my board exams.

In addition to enhancing memory, tai ji has been suggested to have many other health benefits, including:
  • balance, fewer falls in the elderly
  • cardiac rehabilitation (post surgery)
  • high blood pressure
  • headaches

These effects have mostly been studies in the elderly, but in the few studies with younger adults, the effects have been even stronger. Tai ji is a very safe practice to introduce into your daily routine and makes for a great start to the day.

*Note: Tai ji is the same as the more commonly used "tai chi," but uses the more up to date pinyin romanization of Chinese, whereas tai chi is the older Wade-Giles romanization.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Losing and Maintaining Weight 101

Whether you feel you're at your ideal weight or you'd like to lose a few (or more) pounds, you'll likely learn something valuable from this course. We'll cover what ideal weight is and why it matters, how your weight is related to disease risk and lifespan, complicating factors that might make it hard to lose weight and how medically assisted weight loss can help.

Join Dr. Clark at any of the following three evenings at New Seasons Market:
July 2 @ New Seasons Market, Happy Valley
Aug 4 @ New Seasons Market, Orenco Station
Aug 11 @ New Seasons Market, Raleigh Hills

All talks are scheduled at 7pm.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Raw Food: More than Salad and Bananas!

Would you like to spend your summer feeling energized and full of vitality? Would you like to lose weight while still eating generous portions of delicious food, including desserts? Would you like to spend more time enjoying your food and less time preparing and cleaning up after meals?

Join Dr. Bijana Devo of True Health Medicine and Dr. Ericha Clare of Simply Nourishing as they pair up to give you the scoop on raw food. From simply peeling a banana to gourmet preparations, raw food is a delicious and nutritious way to "let you food be your medicine."

Recipes and samples to be shared. There will also be a live demonstration for how to make a raw dessert at the Happy Valley talk.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Health Talks for Your Business or Group

Interested in the health of your staff? Want to encourage healthy lifestyle habits?

Consider scheduling a group health talk. The physicians of True Health Medicine, PC are available to speak at your business or group on a wide range of topics, including

  • Nutrition
  • Weight Loss
  • Heart Health
  • Diabetes
  • Allergies
  • Women's and Men's Health
  • Family Medocine
  • Menopause
  • Pain Management
  • Preventive Care
A health talk is a great way to support your staff. Contact us today at 503-691-0901 to discuss how we can provide your staff with important health information.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Seasonal Allergies Talk

It's that time of year again! An itchy nose and watery eyes may mean you’re suffering not from the common cold, but from seasonal allergies. Join us to learn which gentle herbal and homeopathic remedies, along with nutritional support (like raw local honey!), can help ease the symptoms of this all-too-common complaint. We'll discuss ways to prevent and relieve symptoms of seasonal allergies just in time!

Physicians from True Health Medicine pair up with local food favorite New Seasons Market for this series of talks. We'll be speaking at several stores:

May 12 - New Seasons Market @ Raleigh Hills (SW Portland)
May 14 - New Seasons Market @ Happy Valley (Clackamas)
June 4 - New Seasons Market @ Cedar Hills (Beaverton)
June 9 - New Seasons Market @ Orenco Station (Hillsboro)

Cost: Free
RSVP: Contact the individual New Seasons Market directly to sign up or call 503-691-0901 with questions!

Friday, March 20, 2009


Every week there seems to be some article online discussing superfoods, like this slide show or this one. It seems the answers that people are seeking from these articles are: is it good (or, is it as good as the claims) and should I use it? As with most nutritional questions, I don't think the answer is a simple one, but I would offer a quick rule of thumb:

If you can buy it in your produce department, eat it.

So many of the foods we call superfoods are produce, but we are suggested to buy them in pills, juices and powders. In some cases, I think this can be useful - I have a bottle of Veggie pills that I take with me when I'm traveling and won't be preparing my own food and I use a green powder from time to time. These products can also be useful for people suffering from extreme nutritional deficiencies or people who won't eat vegetables.

For most people, though, I think that increasing both the intake of fruits and vegetables and the diversity of fruits and vegetables will serve them well. Blueberries and spinach are amazing foods and I know a lot of people have started incorporating them into their diets and in fact, may eat these foods every day. I would encourage people to keep eating these great foods, but to also try raspberries, marionberries, blackberries, cherries and strawberries* as well as kale, chard, mustard greens, beet greens, dandelion greens and even different varieties of salad greens**.

Not only will your body have access to a wide variety of vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals from these plants, but your palate will thank you for it!

*Remember that berries and other soft skinned fruits are often grown using large amounts of chemical pesticides and consider buying organic to reduce your exposure.
**Please note that if you are taking blood thinning medications, you should speak to your doctor about increasing your intake of dark leafy greens as they are rich in Vitamin K and your medication may need to be adjusted.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

How Much Protein Do I Need Anyway?

You may have asked yourself that very question while looking at protein bars or shakes at the market. Well, the answer isn't always a simple one. Come join us for an in depth look at what protein is, how our body reacts to and utilizes dietary protein and how our need for protein may vary based on our age, weight and activity levels.

Let's decode the FDA's Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for protein and see what it means for you. We'll also look at some interesting research featured in the China Study. This talk will discuss both animal and plant sources of protein, specifically, so omnivores and vegetarians will leave with some new information.

Join us Tuesday March 24 at 7pm for more information and conversation about protein.
Call 503-691-0901 to reserve your seat or with questions.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Homemade Nut Butter

In the midst of all of the recalls of peanut, peanut paste and peanut butter containing products (click here for a full list of recalled items and destroy or return all listed items), a friend of mine made some home made nut butter. I’m a great fan of from-scratch cooking, but don’t always have the time to make everything I’d like. This nut butter, however, from Nourishing Traditions, was so easy and delicious that I may never buy prepared nut butter again!

First, soak 2 cups of nuts. Soaking nuts makes them easier to digest and changes their flavor in an interesting way. Soaked nuts can also be used to make pates and smoothies. I soaked 1 c. almonds and 1 c. cashews overnight. Drain and rinse.

Second, roast or dry the nuts. I don’t like the idea of “cooking” nuts because of the effects on the oils contained in them, but you can slow roast them in a low oven for 10-12 hours or put them in a dehydrator to minimize the oxidation. After the drying, the nuts are a delicious snack – if you don’t make the nut butter right away, you’ll be surprised how quickly these nuts disappear as a quick snack.

Third, grind the nuts to a coarse or fine powder depending on your preference for a chunky or smooth nut butter. If you want chunky, I recommend that you grind ½ finely and ½ more coarsely. You can grind the nuts in a coffee grinder, food processor or dry blender. After grinding, combine in food processor with approx 1/3 c. coconut oil, ¼ tsp. sea salt and 1-2 Tbsp. honey. Process until well blended. Store covered in a cool, dry cupboard – enjoy at room temperature in sandwiches, on apples, as a dessert topping or by itself.

Coconut oil is also a great oil for cooking, even at higher temperatures due to its saturated nature. I have used it for stir fries, Indian food, single veggies and especially in baking (just make sure to get it to liquid form before adding!). It gives a slightly sweet flavor to the food and carries spice well. As with any fat or oil, don’t overdo it.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

I Slept 8 Hours Last Night - How About You?

This month's UTNE Reader seems to be focused on rest - the article that caught my eye was titled, "Get Radical. Get Some Rest." It has become radical to get rest - to go to bed before midnight, to choose an evening in, to sleep until our bodies tell us to wake up without an alarm clock, crying child or scratching dog waking us. On the other hand, it has become, in the words of another author I cannot remember at the moment, a uniquely American "badge of honor" to work more - with a deep sigh, we brag about how much we work, about how little vacation we've had, about what we've accomplished on so little sleep and on what we haven't done because we've been so busy working.

When we're not busy working, I find that we're busy telling people about our work. After I read the piece that pointed out how we seem to equate working more hours with value, I started paying attention to my conversations and notice that I very regularly tell people about my work schedule - not the exact hours, but the number of hours and days and what I miss by working so much. And when I describe my recent vacation, much of it describes how busy we were. It's as though, even on my vacation, I had to be busy, running around, seeing everything. But my favorite part of the vacation, which I rarely describe to others, was spent lying in a hammock listening to the waves crashing on the beach and the faint strains of the various local musicians playing all around. Doing nothing, just resting.

So, I challenge myself and invite you to think about getting some rest. Because of the energetic cycles of our bodies, the hours of sleep we get before midnight are often more restful than those after midnight - that we often get our "second wind" after midnight is result of this - so try going to bed before midnight. Try going to bed at 10 or even 9pm. When possible, don't set an alarm and see when your body wakes you up naturally. And when you're tempted to put on your badge and brag about how much work you're doing, brag about how much sleep you got instead.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Weight Loss Lecture Rescheduled

Tonight's lecture on Medically Supervised Weight Loss has been rescheduled to next week.
There is still space available - call 503-691-0901 to reserve a seat!

Dr. Jeff Clark will speak on Medically Supervised Weight Loss. At this time of year, many people have made resolutions to lose weight and it can be a challenge to do it alone. Beyond that, certain medical and hormonal conditions can contribute to weight gain and frustrate weight loss efforts. Dr. Clark will help you understand how a partnership with your health care provider will enhance your efforts to create lasting change, positive habits and sustainable healthy weight.