4 Roots of Optimum Wellness

There are four essential parts to being healthy: Diet, Exercise, Sleep & Attitude.

Vitae Elixxir Healing Herbs

A proprietary combination of ten disease-fighting herbs used for more than 40 years and helping thousands of people with serious health issues.

Books by Author & Health Coach Chris Pedersen

In a world of adventure and imagination, kids’ books in print and digital that encourage a healthy lifestyle.

6 Tips to Lose Weight

Don’t count calories—take a serious look at the food you want to eat, then ask, ”Is this something that will give my body good health?”

Monday, December 5, 2011

I'm Moving

If things seem a little quiet here, it's because I'm taking a break to move. We're moving out of our house and in order to keep sanity and a good attitude, new posts are hereby on hold.

Besides I'm sure you have plenty to do with the Christmas season in full swing. Take a cyber break and spend more time visiting with family and friends. I know that I will be working like crazy to get my new home in order so I can have family and friends over.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Diagnosis: Osteoporosis

Too many of my friends are getting a diagnosis of osteoporosis. I fear that most women (and men) will get that dreaded diagnosis unless they take action to make a few changes in their life. Current estimates state that worldwide over 200 million women suffer from this disease.

Osteoporosis is the thinning of bone tissue and the loss of bone density over time. Our bones have a structure much like a sponge. Osteoporosis will make that "sponge" look thin—tiny cells become larger—making the "sponge" weaker.

By 2050, the worldwide incidence of hip fractures in men is projected to increase by 310% and 240% in women.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Wisdom Wednesday

When you see the sun out, step outside and enjoy a boost. Take three deep breaths of the clean fresh air.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Wisdom Wednesday

Be thankful for what you have—contentment is an infectious attitude.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Pumpkin Apple Crisp Dessert Recipe

Looking for that autumn-kissed dessert that's not heavy or too sweet. In fact this dessert is full of nutrients. Pumpkin is very low in calories yet a powerhouse of nutrients—good source of vitamin A, B-complex, minerals and antioxidants like leutin, xanthins and carotenes (maybe you guessed this last one from the orange color). Apples are full of their own health benefits—help regulate blood sugar, satisfy hunger and aid digestion to name a few.

The key to this recipe is picking a sweet pumpkin. You need to choose a pumpkin that would be used for baking—not one you might use to carve a ghoulish face or decorate your front porch. Look for sweet pie, pumpkin pie or golden nugget pumpkins to use for this recipe. You'll typically find then in the produce section labeled for baking. They are usually small, about 8 inches in diameter.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Five Tips for Keeping Calm During the Holidays

I grew up in a home with five other siblings. My father made a meager salary and my mother took in ironing and working mom's kids to make extra cash. When it came to the Christmas season, we never expected much—besides we knew that Christmas wasn't about getting, it was about giving and being with family.

Growing into adulthood, we maintained a healthy attitude about Christmas and even birthday's. We've never bought gifts for each other. When our mom was alive and before Alzheimer's disease took her mind, we concentrated on pooling funds and getting her a gift. One year we replaced the worn-out lounger chair she enjoyed sitting in as she held her grandkids and watched them play.

My family has grown. Most of us are now enjoying grandchildren of our own. Without the pressure of gift-buying—What does she need? What if he doesn't like it? I don't like the crowds. My budget is a bit tight—we still get together whenever possible and Christmas time is the best.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Wisdom Wednesday

Eat eggs—the whole egg. They're a great source of high-quality protein and fat. Helps lower blood pressure.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Vegan Butternut Squash Soup

Here's a wonderful, naturally sweet soup you might want to make for your Thanksgiving menu. It's super easy and will be a guaranteed hit. I love butternut squash—it's delicious, naturally sweet and antioxidant rich.

Butternut is a winter squash, which is a good remediator for soil contamination. Remedi...what? As a non-food crop used in rotation farming, winter squash pulls contamination, like Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), out of the soil. Because of the fact that winter squash will naturally uptake contaminants, it makes sense to purchase organic squash as soils used for growing certified organic foods are far less likely to contain undesirable levels of contaminants like PAHs.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Why I Don't Eat Meat & Cow Dairy

federico stevanin / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
I thought it might be helpful for your healthy eating thinking if I tell you why I don't eat meat and cow dairy. Readers of Healthy Journey Cafe know that my health journey includes discovery of colon cancer in 2008. It set my world spinning. After my world slowed back down, I settled with my diagnosis—a genetic defect that statistically assured I would continue to battle colon cancer.

Settling didn't mean I gave up. Instead, I became determined to do everything I could to beat the diagnosis and prove that my healthy diet choices had kept me safe from a more serious discovery in 2008 and healthy diet choices would win the genetic battle.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Wisdom Wednesday

Don't use pasta next time you make Italian. Use zucchini in slices or strips instead.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Vegan Split Pea Soup

A classic protein-rich soup for the approaching cooler weather is Split Pea Soup. However, unlike the classic variety containing ham, which gives the soup a smokey flavor, this recipe is vegan. Ah... don't despair. There's plenty of flavor in this version helped along by smoked paprika.

Besides being rich in protein (ha... bet you didn't know that), peas are a great source of the minerals molybdenum, manganese, potassium and phosphorous. You also get folate and thiamin (vitamin B1) and like other legumes, peas are a very good source of cholesterol-lowering fiber. Some of the phytonutrient goodness includes isoflavones that have been linked to a reduced risk of disease such as breast and prostate cancer.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Should You Get A Flu Shot?

With drug stores sprouting up on every corner in even the smallest towns, you can't avoid seeing banners that promote getting a flu shot. Cold weather setting in typically signals the start of the flu season. Should you run down to your local pharmacy and get a flu shot?

Flus are not fun. Fever, chills, runny nose, sore throat, cough, muscle aches, fatigue and decreased appetite. With some rest they typically run their course in two to three days, with some symptoms hanging on for a week. The fact is dying from the flu is rare. The vast majority of so-called “flu deaths” are due to bacterial pneumonia—a potential complication of the flu if your immune system is too weak.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Wisdom Wednesday

Go to bed an hour earlier than usual. Keep all electric and electronic devices off the hour leading up to bedtime.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Red Genius Juice Recipe

Here's a treat for your body. No tricks here. Just a simple healthy recipe for vegetable juice. The recipe comes from Sandy Halliday, detox specialist. I interviewed Sandy recently about her ebook The Definitive Detox Diet.

With a name like Red Genius, who doesn't want to get some of this nutrition in their bodies? Beets are rich in phytonutrients called betalains that provide antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and detoxification support for the body.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Interview with a Detox Expert

Today we’re chatting with Sandy Halliday, a former nurse, who now blogs about nutrition, natural remedies and how to detox to regain your health at www.thedetoxspecialist.com. Sandy wrote The Definitive Detox Diet ebook to help people regain their health and stay healthy in a toxic world.

Tell us about your background in the health industry?
I was very interested in human biology at school and fascinated (still am) by how the body works. I originally thought I would like to study medicine, but was put off by my teachers. In those days, it was difficult and unusual for women to get into medical school. So I decided to train to be a nurse instead.

Working in hospitals was a great eye opener for me. I was amazed to learn that the human body is such an incredible machine and so very complicated. I discovered there was still a lot not known about how it all worked.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Wisdom Wednesday

Buy a vegetable you've never eaten before and try it. Try parsnips and make Blackeyed Pea Soup.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Serrano Garden Spaghetti

When the crisp, cool weather hits, our taste buds begin to crave wonderful dishes that fill our tummies at dinnertime—like Spaghetti. Last March I posted Portabella Mushroom Spaghetti. Serrano Garden Spaghetti is a twist on that dish. This recipe comes from my equally talented-in-the-kitchen husband. Like me, he's continually making up recipes for our meals. This one I made him write down because I knew you would love it!

Friday, October 21, 2011

"Eating Healthy Is Too Expensive"

That's what we always hear. But is it true? There have been several articles and bog posts this year on the subject and the consensus is..."No!" As reported in the New York Times by Mark Bittman, Is Junk Food Really Cheaper? a dinner at McDonald's for four will cost a family $28. Whereas a dinner of roasted chicken, vegetables, a simple salad and milk costs $14. If that's too much money, how about $9 for rice and beans with bacon, green peppers and onion, and milk?

The article shows a McDonald's vs healthy food comparison graphic complete with photos and nutritional information. It's definitely worth a view.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Wisdom Wednesday

Walk around your block three times this week.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Green Coconut Smoothie Recipe

This delicious and healthy green smoothie will keep you going all afternoon. Besides the wealth of nutrients in the veggies, the 1/4 cup of raw unsweetened coconut flakes is packed with minerals and fiber. Coconut is also rich in medium-chain triglycerides, a type of dietary fat that encourages weight loss by boosting your metabolism and curbing your appetite. Other substances in raw coconut bolster your immune function and destroys pathogens.

Are you ready for a boost? Get out your Vita Mix and start blending.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Does Taking Supplements Hurt You?

This week a study released by the Archives of Internal Medicine reported that taking supplements offered little benefit and may in fact cause early death. Tracking nearly 39,000 women, 55 and older for 19 years, they found that those taking supplements experienced a slightly higher risk of death.

I hate these kinds of studies. They do a huge disservice to the public. I am highly suspect of the motivation behind this study. Plus, I want to know exactly what these women ate.

Here are my takes on why this study is flawed:

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Wisdom Wednesday

Count to 50 as you chew your food—then swallow. Trains you to eat consciously and chew your food more, which helps digestion.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Stuffed Summer Squash Recipe

As fall replaces summer, the garden gives its last harvest. Here's a recipe for stuffed summer squash from Jennie Zraick. You may remember Jennie from an interview she gave in the post Dealing With Depression. She overcame her depression with a healthy diet and loves to discover delicious new recipes.

Jennie shares her recipe for Stuffed Summer Squash.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Are Your Teeth Making You Sick?

Recently I met a woman who told me she had severe fibromyalgia that kept her from performing many basic functions, like using a keyboard, due to extreme pain. I inquired about her teeth and she mentioned most of her silver/amalgams had been replaced a few years ago with composite fillings.

Poison in Your Mouth
Often called silver fillings, amalgams are the dark, metal fillings in your mouth. Amalgams are a metal alloy composed of approximately 50% mercury. Should durable, cheap and easy to use constitute a reason to put a poison in your mouth? Everywhere else, but in your mouth, mercury is considered a dangerous and toxic material. There is considerable controversy regarding the use of mercury fillings in repairing cavities.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Wisdom Wednesday

When eating raw vegetables, cut them up into 1/2 inch cubes to make chewing easier.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Spicy Pumpkin Cashew-Cheese Dip Recipe

It's autumn—leaves change color and begin to fall. The air smells fresh and pumpkins appear on doorsteps and porches. Time to break out the fall recipes.

Spicy Pumpkin Cashew-Cheese Dip is a yummy appetizer you can take to your autumn gatherings and harvest events. I first got a taste of the appetizer when Leslie Cole brought this delicious pumpkin dip to a neighborhood wine event.

The recipe comes from Kathy Patalsky at Healthy Happy Life. Kathy is a vegan chef and in case you didn't know, cashews are used as cheese in many vegan recipes. Thus the cashew-cheese in the title.

Friday, September 30, 2011

A Healthy Snack For Getting B17

One of the important supplements that I take to fight cancer in my body is B17. To learn about foods that contain B17 and the reason I take it, read My Cancer Answer Arsenal, Part 2.

Apricot Power, makers of the B17 supplement I take, has introduced ApriSnack™, a healthy food bar packed with B17. This raw food treat is filled with nutrition that will satisfy your hunger for hours because of its healthy fats and 8 grams of protein. ApriSnack is 20% larger (by weight) than a Clif Bar, which contains added sugars like evaporated cane juice. The only sweetener in ApriSnack is a smidge of stevia leaf powder—the last ingredient.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Wisdom Wednesday

Watch the movie Fat Sick and Nearly Dead on streaming Netflix.

The movie follows the real world stories of Joe Cross and Phil Staples both morbidly obese and sick with the same condition. They follow a simple fruit and vegetable juicing regimen to regain health and achieve optimum wellness.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Bean & Quinoa Veggie Burgers Recipe

I have been creating this recipe in my mind for months now and finally... Voila! I know there are lots of veggie burger recipes out there and although healthy and yummy, they often don't hold together. This one does!

The day I made the burgers, I decided it would be my contribution to a neighborhood potluck we attended every first Friday of the month. I know—pretty bold, huh? I certainly didn't tell them they were guinea pigs. But I also wouldn't have taken them if they were horrible. I made mini-patties out of the mixture and had a mayonnaise and dijon mustard sauce on the side for dipping. Mmmmmmm! Very happy with the results. I hope you like these Bean & Quinoa Veggie Burgers.

Friday, September 23, 2011

My Son the Harvard Doctor

I don't have a son who's a Harvard doctor (my son's are engineers). But if I did, he would have made me proud with the changes to the USDA food plate or MyPlate. Frankly the biggest problem with the government's MyPlate is politics.

This week Harvard unveiled its version of a healthy eating plate to help consumers make better sense of the government version. Walter Willet, chair of the nutrition department of Harvard School of Public Health felt the government food plate was "a step in the right direction." But the plate contained too much dairy and not enough clarification on protein choices.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Wisdom Wednesday

For dinner commit to have half your plate filled with vegetables (potatoes don't count).

Monday, September 19, 2011

Vegetarian Mexican Pasole Soup Recipe

If you've been afraid to go raw or vegan, this recipe just might convince you to take the leap. You might discover you're missing out on the rich flavors of simple spices and yummy taste of fresh vegetables. This Pasole recipe is missing the meat, but no flavor lacking here.

This recipe came from a raw food class I took with my friend Jennie Zraick, an avid fan of HJC. Becky at Whole Foods Market in Roseville in the Sacramento area teaches raw food cooking on a regular schedule. She wows the attendees with her vast knowledge of the health benefits of foods while she's chopping and blending her creations.

I made a huge batch and brought it to a Labor Day BBQ and it was a hit. I sent leftovers home with eager takers with a promise to post it soon. So here you go!

Friday, September 16, 2011

Losing Weight By Osmosis

Okay, don't run away. This is not going to be another quasi-chemistry lesson. Remember Demystifying Acid vs. Alkaline? This time we're talking about losing weight by the process of gradual or unconscious assimilation of healthy foods.

Exhibit A: my husband, Bob. When I started my diet, he pretty much did his own thing in the morning and at lunch. He ate pretty healthy, but his breakfast was mostly cereal out of a box. Even the organic cereals in our pantry had added sweetener usually in the form of evaporated cane sugar. Argh! Bottom line: acidifies in the body and turns to fat.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Wisdom Wednesday

Eat half a banana when you get up in the morning and drink 8 oz of pure/filtered water. Good for elimination and energy.

Congratulations to the giveaway winner of the Debbie Meyer Green Bags: Nancy Hill!

Monday, September 12, 2011

Roasted Red Pepper Spread Recipe

This dip or spread is a twist on a recipe from Kalyn's Kitchen. I made it friendly to my diet with chevre goat cheese instead of yoghurt and cream cheese. The chevre adds a mild tartness to the spread. I used this dip/spread on everything from crackers and veggie sticks, to a spread on tortillas for fish tacos. Yummmmm! Everyone loves the mint flavor in the dip.

Friday, September 9, 2011

The Power of Gratitude

Need a lift in your spirits? Sit back, relax and enjoy this beautiful movie from Simple Truths. Life is hard for many people. I know from my own challenges with life that stress can be overwhelming.

It helps to take a break and take stock of the blessings in your life despite existing uncertainties.

Attitude is one of the roots of optimum health. Make sure you regularly check your attitude. Remember you are what you eat—also, you are what you think.

What simple truth do you tell yourself to improve your attitude and outlook?

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Wisdom Wednesday

I'm starting a new feature at Healthy Journey Cafe called Wisdom Wednesday. You'll find quick and easy tips on making healthy changes in your life.

Store your vegetables in green bags. Your vegetables will last longer and you'll be throwing away less food.

I use Debbie Meyer Green Bags. To launch Wisdom Wednesday, We're having a giveaway. Waaaaahoooo!

Leave a comment for a chance to win a box of Debbie Meyer Green Bags. I'll announce a winner on September 14th.

Odds of winning vary due to number of entrants.
Prizes will be mailed to U.S. or Canadian addresses only.

Let me know how you like Wisdom Wednesday. Maybe you have a health tip to share.