No Butter Lactation Cookies

Pumping for Baby KenjiI have so much respect for breast feeding mamas, especially working breast feeding mamas. It’s very common for working moms to experience a drop in their lactation when they return to work. Juggling work and pumping throughout the day can be challenging and stressful. Fortunately, there are several remedies you can try to improve lactation, but eating delicious cookies seemed way more appealing… said the foodie in rehab. You might be wondering what makes this a lactation cookie? The lactation ingredients are brewer’s yeast, flaxseed meal and oats. So, you can add more or less depending on your preference.

I researched several recipes and found one that received high ratings. I made a few substitutions to create my own healthier version. I ultimately cut the sugar and used unsweetened applesauce instead of butter. I also used brown rice flour instead of all purpose flour. I started to notice a difference in my milk supply within 2 days. I was pumping 1 to 3 oz more than I would normally pump, which varied depending on the frequency.

Get the recipe

Did you try this recipe? I’d love to see pics and hear your feedback.

The Food Hospital Episode S02/E04

The Food Hospital is one of my favorite shows that is very informative and satisfies my dose of learning something new every day. The premise of this show is to help people understand food and how they can change their diet to minimize or even cure their health issues.

In this episode, they observe a fad dieter who depends on the Master Cleanse Detox, also known as the Lemonade Diet, to lose weight. I’ve tried this detox myself twice and it was definitely challenging. I noticed that I became a little loopy around day 3, mainly because I missed the sensation of tasting, chewing and eating. Although I was able to lose 10 pounds in 10 days, the results were short lived because I didn’t have a plan to continue on with a healthier lifestyle. Watch this episode to learn more.

They also help a morbidly obese man recognize that he could be eating himself into an early grave with highly processed and fatty convenience foods. He claims that he can turn a car over, but can’t run for a bus. Will he have the will power to stick to his diet? Watch to find out

In another case, they diagnose and treat a child who suffers from celiac disease. They suggest gluten-free alternatives that resemble kid-friendly foods. I am noticing that there are more gluten-free products available in stores and readily available. If you don’t have an allergy to gluten, there is no reason to remove it from your diet. Gluten is a protein found in wheat that can be a healthy part of your diet. So find out if it’s really harming your body before you exclude it from your diet.

The Food Hospital also takes a closer look at the benefits of eating blueberries and its potential brain enhancing power. Labeled as a superfood, blueberries contain antioxidants, promotes blood flow, guards against heart disease and neurological deterioration. Some scientists now believe that blueberries can stimulate brain activity in areas that are responsible for learning, memory and concentration. The food hospital conducts their own experiment with a sales team to test this theory. Watch to learn more.

They also explore the question: Can onion rival aspirin and reduce your risk of heart attack? I would personally prefer aspirin over onions, but I like the idea of consuming onions for heart health. Watch to learn more.

This show really inspires me to learn more about food and how it can benefit my health goals. In the wise words of G.I. Joe, “Knowing is half the battle.”

Ps, 1 stone equals 14 pounds.

Skinny Turkey Taco Supreme

What makes this a skinny turkey taco supreme?

By using lean ground turkey you reduce calories and fat consumed. But not all turkey is created equal.  The 85/15 turkey is not as healthy as the 90/10 ground beef from a calorie and fat comparison, so check food labels and consider a lean protein for your next taco feast.
Read more from DrGourmet.com.

I also substituted sour cream for fat-free greek yogurt. I used Dannon Oikos Plain Greek yogurt. As much as it wants to be a part of the yogurt family, my taste buds believed that it had GREAT potential to be sour cream.

Not ALL fat-free foods are good for you. And not ALL fats are bad for you. Read more from Livestrong.com.

Ingredients: {1 serving = 2 tacos}
4 oz Ground Turkey
1/4 cup Chopped Lettuce
2 tbsp Fat Free Greek Yogurt
2 tbsp Homemade Salsa
2 tbsp black beans and corn

Directions:
Season and cook your ground turkey. I used a little sea salt, pepper, paprika, garlic powder and onion powder. I suggest avoiding the pre packaged taco seasoning you find at the store. It’s loaded with sodium! Layer your ingredients & enjoy!

This is really a quick and easy meal that you can make ahead of time  and pack for your work day lunch.

May: Superfood of the Month – Avocado

I love avocados. They complement almost any meal and have so many benefits.

nutrition+wellness

avocado

This highly nutritious fruit is a staple come summer time, and can be found locally. It’s easy to add to burgers, tacos, or salads and offers a plethora of vitamins as well as mono-unsaturated fats which aid good heart health.

Benefits of Avocado:

+ High dietary fiber
+ Contains tannin; a natural anti-inflammatory
+ High amounts of omega 6s and fatty acids lower bad cholesterol
+ Good source of antioxidants
+ Good source of Vitamin C, E & K

 

Source: Nutrition & You

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Southwestern Chopped Salad & Cilantro Lime Dressing

I came across this great recipe for a southwestern chopped salad with cilantro lime dressing from TheGardenGrazer.com.

When I first tried this recipe, I accidentally put too much vinegar. I still had hope and kept adding more ingredients to resurrect it. If you make the same mistake I did, try adding a little honey. I also added some ginger for a twist. Season to taste.

I won’t lie. It wasn’t AMAZING, but I knew it had potential. Add some grilled chicken or grilled salmon to balance out this light meal. Sprinkle some tortilla strips on top and you’re golden. Enjoy!

Try this recipe from Food.com
Nordstrom Lime & Chicken Cilantro Salad Dressing

Happier & Healthier, Not Miserable & Healthier

2013-04-04 12.24.04     Going on a diet is like a practice run or jump-start. You’ll quickly find out what foods you are willing to eliminate or substitute for a healthier alternative. Don’t give up something you love and your downgrade your quality of life. If you’re like me, your ultimate goal is to be HAPPY & healthy, not miserable & healthy. Some people may compensate an extra 30 minutes of cardio for that brownie they had. The trick is to find your balance and practice moderation in all things. What works for one person may not work for another.
I tried the raw food diet once. It was hard, but a great experience that taught me how to incorporate fresh foods and ultimately created a healthy habit of avoiding most processed foods. I swapped out my chips for fresh fruits and learned which healthy snacks worked for me. Some people dehydrate their own fruit to avoid preservatives from packaged goods. I simply don’t have the equipment or patience, so I resort to freeze dried bananas or mangos to satisfy the crunchy texture I crave. Trader Joe’s has a small selection of freeze dried fruits that are as low as $1.99.
No matter what fad diet you’re into, pick and choose what works for you to work towards a happier and healthier lifestyle, not just a temporary deprivation period. As your body changes, so will your needs and need to find a better balance. Your instincts will guide you in the right direction. It’s up to your conscience to follow it. From a Shakira perspective, your hips don’t lie. If you’re gaining a “muffin top,” it’s time to try something else.