A Seasonal Soup: Turnip, Apple & Butternut Squash

There’s nothing better than an easy-to-make, delicious fall soup. This soup was made entirely with organic produce from my Community Shared Agriculture “CSA” share (see www.localharvest.org to find one near you).
This recipe features delicious butternut squash that is rich in beta-carotene and vitamins A and C, all that can help to boost immunity which is key for fighting off the flu and cold this season.

You’ll also enjoy turnips that are a member of the cruciferous vegetable family along with broccoli, brussels sprouts, kale and cauliflower. These vegetables contain vitamins C, B, E and K in addition to key minerals such as calcium, potassium, magnesium and selenium.

When making this recipe you can use water as the liquid or you can use low sodium vegetable broth either purchased ahead of time or made from your juice pulp.

6 Powerful Anti-Cancer Plant Foods



October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, so there’s no better time to talk about powerful, anti-cancer foods and ways to add them to your food and juices.

There are three main factors when it comes to cancer prevention:

  • healthy weight
  • regular exercise
  • healthy diet

Let’s focus on the healthy diet.
When it comes to plant-based foods, we often look to many of the well-known anti-cancer foods like berries, ginger, turmeric, pomegranate, tomatoes and others; however, there are many other less well-known plant-based foods that are also cancer preventive. These 6 foods/food groups contain powerful anti-cancer nutrients that you should be including.

1. Walnuts
Studies are still being conducted, but current research indicates that compounds found in walnuts including flavonoids (a family of nutrients that contain antioxidants), ellagic acid and alpha-linolenic acid may be beneficial in slowing growth of breast and prostate cancers. Additionally, walnuts contain plant-based essential amino acids from alpha-linolenic acid that may help to fight inflammation.

How to use: Grab a handful of walnuts as a healthy snack or sprinkle on your morning oatmeal or hot cereal and you can even make an easy nut butter by swapping walnuts for almonds in this easy recipe.

2. Squash
There are many different types of squash including winter, butternut and acorn. Most squash contains nutrients including fiber, beta-carotene, carotenoids and vitamins A and C. Research suggests including a good source of fiber (25+ grams per day) may help to prevent colorectal cancers, while including foods like squash that are rich in beta carotene and carotenoids may help to prevent cancers such as those of the mouth/throat, esophagus, stomach, and kidneys.

How to use: Squash can be used in many delicious ways including soup, as a healthy side to your meal like spaghetti squash, and even roasted squash for a main dish.

3. Flaxseeds
Flaxseeds contain a nutrient called lignan, which research suggests may help to slow breast cancer tumor growth (research has been conducted in animals and still needs to be proven in humans). Flaxseed also contains a good source of fiber that maybe beneficial in preventing colorectal cancer, and it’s a good source of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) that can be converted to anti-inflammatory omega 3 fatty acids in the body.

How to use: Flaxseed must be ground in order for our bodies to use it properly; once ground flaxseed makes for a great addition to a smoothie like this Blueberry Mango Superfood Smoothie or to make Flax crackers, or even to make a delicious meal such as cauliflower pizza.

4. Garlic
Garlic not only has a powerful flavor, but also contains powerful anti-cancer nutrients. Garlic is part of the allium vegetable family that contains a number of anti-cancer compounds including allicin and others. Research suggests that nutrients found many of the allium-family vegetables including garlic may be efficacious in slowing tumor growth in the prostate, bladder, lung, breast, esophagus, and colon. Garlic also contains a compound called diallyl disulfide that has been found to be potentially cancer-preventive in areas including skin, lung and also colon. 

How to use: Don’t be afraid of garlic breath! The benefits of garlic far outweigh the risk for bad breath so use this powerful cancer-fighting vegetable in stews, sautéed vegetables, salads, raw lasagna, and one of our favorites…Zucchini Macadamia Pesto Roll Ups!

5. Cruciferous Vegetables
It’s no secret that cruciferous vegetables (kale, broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, cabbage) provide anti-cancer nutrients. Most cruciferous vegetables contain manganese, an important compound that acts as a part of one of the body’s major antioxidants called Superoxide Dismutase. Cruciferous vegetables also contain compounds called glucosinolates isothiocyanates and indoles that have been found to be anti-inflammatory and may work to stimulate genes that suppress tumor growth. Additionally, cruciferous vegetables are a good source of fiber, which has also been shown to be cancer-preventive, specifically for colon cancer.

How to use: Cruciferous vegetables are versatile and can be consumed cooked or raw- and are delicious in juices.

6. Chili Peppers
Chili peppers have a powerful flavor, and now new research is suggesting that they may contain powerful anti-cancer properties. Chili peppers contain a nutrient called capsacin that preliminary research suggests may be potentially anti-inflammatory, and may also be beneficial in stopping or slowing tumor growth. In addition to its potential benefit in cancer prevention, capsacin may also help to boost metabolism.

How to use: Sprinkle some dried chili powder in your soup or juice or add fresh chili or other hot peppers to a healthy pizza, stir fry or soup, or even a smoothie. 

If you or someone you know has cancer, here are tips for eating and drinking juice while undergoing cancer treatment.
Proper nutrition and inclusion of healthful foods may benefit symptom management, treatment-related fatigue, and weight maintenance. For example, including natural remedies to help ease nausea (lemon and ginger) or help to relieve constipation (senna-tea and fluids/electrolytes) among other things, in conjunction with the plan prescribed by the doctor can be helpful in many cases.

Lastly, it’s very important to note that while undergoing any type of cancer treatment it is not advised to take part in any all-juice plan, but instead adding juices on top of healty meals and snacks may help to provide extra nutrients and calories; it’s important to remember to wash produce extremely well.

11 Natural Ways to Fight a Cold


Seasons are changing all over the world! Here in Australia we are just coming off of a particularly bad season for coughs, runny noses, headaches, sore throats and generally feeling awful, so we are welcoming spring with open arms. When temperatures and humidity drops (like it’s about to for those of you in the northern hemisphere), cold viruses can survive better, but that doesn’t mean you have to suffer from them!

The cure? It’s not always medicine. Advertisements encourage people to soldier on through sickness by taking cold and flu medications, which are stimulants that allow you to keep pushing on rather than taking the time to rest as needed. Antibiotics are often prescribed but unfortunately many of these infections are viral which are not affected by antibiotics. Antibiotics destroy many of the good bacteria in our digestive systems and may in the long-term if taken too frequently suppress the immune system, cause antibiotic resistance and increase the risk of other health conditions.

The good news? You’re not completely at the mercy of an infection when it hits you. There are many foods, spices and medicinal herbs that have been shown to reduce the incidence, severity and duration of these infections.

Think about adding these 11 plant foods to your diet to avoid the seasonal sickness:

1. Garlic
The main medicinal compound found in garlic (allicin & allion) is strongest in raw form. British researchers gave 146 people either a placebo or a garlic extract for 12 weeks; the garlic takers were two-thirds less likely to catch a cold. You can add it fresh to a meal or crush it through a press onto a spoon and drizzle olive oil and honey over it and take it directly off the spoon, or swallow slices like a pill!

 

2. Onions
Like garlic, onions also contain the antimicrobial compounds allion and allicin. This is also best consumed raw. Add finely chopped onion to your salads, as a garnish on soups, stir-fries and it can also be consume soaked in honey (a great natural cough syrup).

 


3. Mushrooms
Studies show that mushrooms increase the production and activity of white blood cells, making them more aggressive. Consume shiitake, maitake, and reishi mushrooms in soups, broths and in stir-fries.

 

4. Citrus Fruits
Bioflavonoids found largely in the pith and vitamin C found in the flesh are very important for supporting white blood cell health and strength. Vitamin C particularly gives these cells muscle to put up a good fight.

 

 

5. Probiotics & Fermented Foods
Research published in The University of Medicine and Dentistry in New Jersey found probiotics helped reduce the duration of a cold as well as the severity of symptoms. Probiotics have been shown to prevent acute upper respiratory tract infections.

 

 

6. Ginger
Ginger contains antiviral agents and supports healthy immunity. This is wonderful to drink warm with lemon and honey to reduce symptoms along with adding it to juices, soups and other meals.

 

7. Medicinal Herbs
Medicinal Herbs like Echinacea, Olive leaf, Andrographis, Elder flowers and berries, either taken as a tea or as a herbal tincture, will support immunity and may reduce the duration and severity of the infection. Licorice and Aniseed are wonder herbs for coughs with natural anti-viral agents – this has saved me many times when my kids have picked up a bad cough.

 

 

8. Thyme & Oregano
These contain natural antimicrobial compounds and can be taken as a tea, juiced, sprinkled on salads, soups and stir-fries.

 

 

9. Vitamin A
Vitamin A keeps the mucous membranes that line our nose and throat, our first line of defense, healthy and functioning optimally. Vitamin A rich foods such as carrots, sweet potatoes, beets can be added to any citrus and ginger for a full immunity kick.

 

 

10. Selenium
Foods such as brazil nuts, sunflower seeds, mushrooms, whole grains, meats and seafood contain selenium which helps white blood cells produce cytokines that help clear flu viruses out of the body. Researchers found that mice infected with the flu virus showed higher levels of inflammation if they were deficient in selenium.

 

 

11. Zinc
Look for foods such as sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, cashews, quinoa, shellfish particularly oysters to get your zinc. Zinc deficiency affects the ability of T cells and other immune cells to function effectively.

 

 

Remember it is also important to be kind to yourself, rest and allow others to support you.

21 Reasons to Love Strawberries



May is the beginning of a warm and wonderful season here in the Northeastern part of the United States and it’s also National Strawberry Month; so to start of this vibrant month we want to highlight this bright, colorful, and healthful seasonal fruit. Strawberries are often highlighted for their rich source of nutrition, antioxidants, and their versatility in cooking, making smoothies, and juicing.

6 Reasons to include more strawberries in your everyday life… 

1.) Source of antioxidants: Strawberries, along with other berries are often touted as a great source of antioxidants. Antioxidants are commonly found in plant-based foods like fruits and vegetables, and provide protection for our cells against cancer-causing damage. To provide the maximum nutrition to your body, you should aim to vary the colors of fruits and vegetables that you eat or drink everyday to include produce of all different colors.

2.) Immune boosting: Strawberries are a good source of vitamin C, a nutrient which can help to promote a healthy immune system.

3.) Heart-healthy: Strawberries along with other fruits and vegetables are a great source of potassium. Potassium is an important nutrient for our bodies for many reasons, one of which includes helping to promote healthy blood pressure.

4.) Lower in sugar: For many of us conscious of blood sugar, berries are a great fruit choice as they are naturally lower in sugar, which may prevent blood sugar spikes. In addition, they are great when added to juices and smoothies because they add a slight hint of sweet.

5.) Lower in calories: Another reason strawberries are great, is that they are relatively lower in calories than other fruits, at only 4 calories per medium-sized strawberry.


6.) Good for your skin:
Vitamin C isn’t only great for boosting digestion and for promoting a healthy immune system, it’s also great for skin health, as it also acts as an antioxidant that can help prevent damage to your skin.

10 ways to use strawberries in your kitchen… 

1.) Flavor Your Water Naturally: Slice a few strawberries (3-4) and add to a large jug of water in your refrigerator that you will pour smaller glasses from. This way your water will have a nice, natural strawberry flavor. You can also try adding other fruits or vegetables like cucumber to naturally flavor your water as well.

2.) Blend in your smoothie: Add fresh or frozen strawberries to your next smoothie concoction for added flavor, vitamin C, antioxidants, and vibrant color. Try making up your own smoothie recipe or see some of our favorites below.

 3.) Add as an ingredient in your juice: Strawberries add a nice and light sweetness to juices when added with other vegetables. Unlike apples, oranges or some other fruits, strawberries add just a slight sweetness and can be a great substitution for other fruits when being cautious for high blood sugar.

4.) Bake with other fruits and mixed nuts for a healthy and balanced dessert: Check out one of our favorite fruit bake recipes!

5.) Cook them with fruits like rhubarb for a healthy fruit compote.

6.) Mash and spread onto sprouted bread for an all-natural strawberry jam.

7.) Naturally flavor your coconut water: Similar to the tips for boosting water flavor, you can add fresh strawberries to your coconut water for added flavor.

8.) Strawberry-flavored ice cubes: Chop 3-4 strawberries up into small, cube-like pieces and add to your ice tray (1-2 pieces each cube) before freezing. When you use them they’ll be colorful and will melt to add a nice flavor to your beverage.

9.) Add to a salad for extra color and flavor: Simply slice up a few strawberries to add as a garnish or as a main ingredient to a green or a fruit salad.


10.) Add to your morning hot cereal
: Adding strawberries while cooking your hot cereal, (oatmeal, quinoa, or teff) or adding afterward as a garnish is a great way to add extra nutrition and flavor to your morning meal.  Strawberries are loaded with antioxidants and can help to rev your body up for a healthy day.

Some all-time favorite strawberry recipes…
Strawberry Chia Pudding
Strawberry Chocolate Swirl Ice Cream
Strawberry Coconut Shake
Green Strawberry Juice
Strawberry Date Smoothie

 

10 Must-Have Springtime Pantry Staples



Spring is here full of sunshine, warmth, longer days and lush greens and blooming colors!  What a great time to stock your pantry with some essential staples to help you eat clean, light and healthy this spring season.  Having these staples around can help you pack for a picnic at the park, a light lunch or easy healthy dinners. 

1.) Dry Beans
Looking for a healthy way for quick, nutritious protein?  Dry beans are an inexpensive protein rich food that can save you tons of time as long as you plan ahead. Simply soak the night before then rinse in the morning, and cook in water with some seasoning either on the stove or in your crockpot. I like to use my crockpot so I can just add beans, water, spices, then hit go and I’m out the door!
Try this Spring Lentil Stew. 

2.) Cumin
One of my favorite spices that adds warm flavor and loads of immune supporting nutrients like iron, magnesium, calcium and manganese plus potassium, copper, thiamin (B1) and phosphorus.
Try this Easy Guacamole for a power-packed snack.

3.) Chili Powder
Another staple in our household for flavorful plant-based meals.  Chili’s amazing phytonutrients can help boost metabolism and provide potent anti-inflammatory compounds.
Try this yummy Sweet Potato Chickpea Chili.

4.) Nuts
Looking for a delicious, fast and easy snack or protein filled garnish for breakfast or your favorite smoothie…. Go nuts!  Nuts are loaded with healthy fats and important vitamins and minerals.  Just like fruits and veggies they are all good for different reasons so enjoy a hearty variety.  For example, pistachios are rich in calcium, almonds in vitamin E, walnuts have omega-3s.  Try this Brazil Nut Chai Tea Latte   or Green Pear Walnut Smoothie.

5.) Quinoa
My favorite grain because it’s gluten-free, so easy to cook (just like rice; I use my rice cooker) and packed with protein, iron and fiber.  Try this Butternut Squash Pomegranate Pistachio Quinoa. 

6.) Nori
Looking for a new, healthy twist on a wrap sandwich?  Nori is a sea vegetable rich in omega-3 healthy fats known for their benefit to the heart, anti inflammation and helping with cognitive development or brain power!  Try these Nori Wraps.

7.) Goji Berries
A favorite in the Reboot Kitchen thanks to their amazing antioxidants and delicious tart flavor!  Try this Berry Oats & Goji Spring Smoothie.

8.) Cacao
Looking for a healthier chocolate treat?  Look no further – adding cacao gives you that chocolaty flavor without all the heaviness with a boost of antioxidants.  Try making this yummy treat Vegan Chocolate Chip Ice Cream.

9.) Chia
This super seed is loaded with protein, fiber and omega-3s plus you don’t need to grind them to get all those nutrients.  Try this Rich and Creamy Strawberry Chia Pudding or Sand and Sun Smoothie.

10.) Ginger
Ginger provides nutrients that can help with digestion, reduce nausea and boost immunity and metabolism.  Plus it tastes great in juice, smoothies and many recipes. Try Heartbreak Hill, Fennel Spice & Everything Nice or Minty Pineapple.

17 Warming Drinks for Winter (for our friends in the southern hemisphere!)



Here in the southern hemisphere it is cold and wet in many areas so drinking cold juice is not always appealing or inviting. Adding a few additions or making a few changes can turn that cold drink into a warming beverage that seems more appealing for a cold winter’s day!

Our past autumn juices post encouraged juices that contained fruits and vegetables that were all in season and suitable for the weather changes. Now we are well and truly into our colder months it’s time for some warming juice recipes. Adding spices into juices certainly acts as a warming agent particularly ginger and cayenne pepper.

 Here is a list of fruits and vegetables that are now in season.

Fruits – Grapefruit, kiwi fruit, lemons, mandarins, oranges, banana, pears, rhubarb

Vegetables – Brussels sprouts, carrots, fennel, potatoes, silverbeet, spinach, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, cucumbers, leek, turnip, beetroot, celeriac, celery, kohlrabi, onions, parsnips, pumpkin, sweet potato.

Warming Spices for the colder months – cinnamon, cardamom, black pepper, ginger, turmeric, cloves, nutmeg and chilli. Here is more on the benefits of spices!

Here is a list of great warming winter juices to enjoy:

Here are a few warming smoothies to enjoy!

Warming broths are also highly encouraged and can be consumed while completing a juice only reboot or any of the other plans. You can also enjoy these 3 broths anytime.

It is also nice to consume warming herbal teas, particularly ones that contain spices. My personal favourite is Celestial Bengal Spice – which you can buy in health food stores and health food sections of the supermarket. A great homemade dairy-free chai tea is also very warming and delicious!

I hope these suggestions warm you up for the winter. Enjoy!

Top 6 Summertime Sips (Juices & Smoothies!)



In March, we celebrated the 7 Juices Perfect for Spring, but now that it’s officially summer here in the northern hemisphere it’s time to enjoy our favorite fruits and vegetables in the summertime season. And what a better way to enjoy them than in juices and smoothies? Our bodies crave the cooling and refreshing taste that juices and smoothies provide so dive into these top favorite juices and smoothies for warm weather. And for our friends who are entering colder weather in the southern hemisphere, stay tuned because we have warming winter juices for you!

1.) Dad’s Day OJ

Dads Day OJ

2.) Green Strawberry

green strawberry

3.) Starry Night Delight

Starry Night Delight

4.) Gold Juice

Gold Juice

5.) Kool Kiwi

kool kiwi

6.) Get Your Greens Smoothie

Meatless Monday: Avocado Caprese Salad

Meatless Monday: Avocado Caprese Salad

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 10 minutes

Yield: 2 - 4

Ingredients




When the weather warms up, there’s nothing more satisfying than biting into fresh heirloom tomatoes from the farmer’s market. They’re rich in vitamins C & K, potassium, folate, and when organically grown, they tend to be higher in lycopene. I love to get creative and come up with ways to eat more heirloom tomatoes, and one of my go-to’s is an Avocado Caprese Salad.  Once you see how simple it is, you’ll know that it didn’t take too much creativity for this but it is one of my favorite meals to make, especially when I don’t have much time on my hands.

Ingredients:
2 large heirloom tomatoes (or any variety if heirloom aren’t available)
1/2 avocado
8 – 16 basil leaves
Olive oil to taste
Balsamic vinegar to taste
Dash of Himalayan Salt and ground pepper to taste

Directions:
1.) Wash the heirloom tomatoes well and cut off the ends.

2.) Slice each one into four thick slices.

3.) Slice avocado into slices. Then assemble tomato on plate and top with avocado slices (I normally add two slices per tomato).

4.) Add 1 to 2 basil leaves to each tomato.

5.) Drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar and dash of Himalayan salt and ground pepper.

6.) Serve as an appetizer (serves 4) or a light meal (serves 2) and enjoy!

 

In the Reboot Kitchen: The Melon Shake

In the Reboot Kitchen: The Melon Shake

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 10 minutes

Yield: 1

Serving Size: 16 oz. (500 mls)

Ingredients



Rockmelon (Cantaloupe) is at the end of the season here in Australia but due to the extended warm weather there is an abundance of them. I love this fruit as it is light, refreshing and delicious and great in juices and smoothies! Cantaloupe season is coming soon to the Northern hemisphere and the smoothie can be bookmarked if you are a cantaloupe lover. 

Rockmelon (cantaloupe) is high in folic acid, vitamin C, vitamin A, potassium and fiber while the banana is high in potassium, magnesium, fiber and many other goodies!

Ingredients:
1 cup rockmelon (cantaloupe)
1 frozen banana
½ cup of coconut water
½ cup of ice

Directions:

1.)    Chop and peel the rockmelon (cantaloupe).

2.)    Combine ingredients in a blender.

3.)    Blend & ENJOY!


Substitutions:
Rockmelon (cantaloupe) – green melon (honey dew), watermelon, peach, papaya
Banana – avocado, raspberries, blueberries
Coconut water – water, any nut or seed milks