Paleo and Vegan Sauce

003I heard about this idea for faux mashed potatoes and the technique I used made it more like bechamel sauce. Everyone loved it. Here it is served on a salad with lentil sprouts and arugula.

Ingredients:
1 Head of Cauliflower, leaves removed
Salt to taste (optional)

Equipment:
Steamer
Highspeed blender (Vitamix)
Tongs

 

Directions:

  1. Wash cauliflower
  2. Cut into pieces no larger than 4 inches in any direction
  3. Steam cauliflower until it’s soft
  4. Turn off the steamer
  5. Using tongs and being very careful (so you don’t scald yourself on the steam), move the cauliflower from the steamer into the Vitamix (reserve the leftover steam water)
  6. Use the tamper and blend the cauliflower until smooth, adding reserved water ONLY if it won’t blend otherwise
  7. Add salt to taste
  8. Serve over anything that is deserving of a creamy, rich sauce
  9. Refrigerate leftovers

The Calorie Myth

thecaloriemyth
What this book is about
Quick, throw out everything you learned in school about My Plate, the Food Pyramid and calories determining weight. It’s a shock, I know, but calories in, minus calories out, does NOT equal weight loss. Hormones control our weight. I’m going to summarize the book but you MUST read it to get your head on straight about the topic.

This book covers how the myth got started, how the document the Food Pyramid is based on disclaims itself, the scientific evidence behind eating and exercising and a plan to get your hormones back in line while lowering your weight. SANE eating and smart exercise get you back in line. There is a five-week plan to change what you eat and how you exercise to repair your hormones and naturally lower your weight, permanently.

What happens when you “diet” a.k.a. starve yourself
Just so we’re on the same page, I use the word “diet” because when people say “diet” they really mean cutting calories to control weight. So, when you starve yourself by cutting down on calories, your body gets the warning that humanity has come upon a time of famine and unless something is done, the body is going to die.

 

 

 

Your body doesn’t want to die so it…
1) starts making more fat cells and storing more fat (that’s right, you weren’t born with all the fat cells you have now);
2) starts burning muscle (because that muscle burns a lot of calories so we’d better get rid of it);
3) slows your metabolism;
4) raises your “normal” body weight.
Your new “normal” is now a higher weight and your hormones will do what it needs to do in order to keep you at that new “normal”.

 

Yikes! So cutting back on calories to lose weight makes my body weight increase for the rest of my life?!

 

What to stop thinking
Stop thinking calories controlling your weight (it’s your hormones that do)
Stop thinking the food pyramid is the way to eat (created by people who had a financial interest in selling grains; it causes obesity)
Stop thinking “everything in moderation” (the quality of what you eat is what matters)
Stop thinking “a calorie is a calorie” (not all calories are created equal and you need to know the difference)
Stop thinking that “fat makes you fat” (fat makes you feel full and is vital to proper functioning of the body and brain)
Stop thinking that “exercising more makes you thinner”

What can be done about it
Eat more quality food, exercise smarter and be patient. I’ll tell you the principles but you really MUST read the book or you will likely fall back to previous ways of eating. Exercise the large muscle groups, one side at a time, with the negative part of the exercise. Eat ten servings of quality veggies every day (NO starchy vegetables), three servings of thirty grams (thirty grams in one sitting) of protein per day (thirty grams at one time triggers the body’s natural muscle repair mechanism) and quality fats.

Got it? Now go out there and change the world by changing yourself. Everyone will want to know what you’re doing. :)

View book details at Amazon.com: The Calorie Myth: How to Eat More, Exercise Less, Lose Weight, and Live Better

Cleansing Conditioners

WendeluxeKitWhat this is
Cleansing conditioners are just a thick hair conditioner that cleanses and conditions your hair at the same time. They also make the hair more manageable and softer. No shampoo is needed.

My experience 
My daughter really wanted to try the Wen cleansing conditioner so we took advantage of their special offer and each got a starter kit. She wound up not being very fond of the product but I loved it. There were problems, though.

The problems
First of all, ordering the starter kit also signs you up for automatic shipments in the future. Unfortunately you’ll only know that if you read the packing slip when your order arrives. Fortunately, a quick call to their office with a request to stop the auto-shipments is painless enough.

Secondly, the products are expensive and you need to use a lot of product. I have long hair and their $39.95 bottle only lasted me three weeks. That’s $13.32 per week. Wen should save you money, according to the information on the website, since you won’t need other styling products. I don’t know about you but I don’t use any other products on my hair. I wash it and let it air dry. I think they need some competition to motivate them to make prices more reasonable.

CleansingConditioner

Thirdly, once I got to the bottom third of the bottle the pump didn’t work anymore. Well it worked but it didn’t reach to the bottom to get the rest of the product out of the bottle. That stuff was so thick that it was work getting it out.

Finally, last week I got an email from Chaz Dean, the founder. It was a special offer just for me since I hadn’t reordered. It was a lovely video with Chaz explaining how to use the product properly. I can see the value in that. Suppose I had been using the product incorrectly and hadn’t gotten the results so I didn’t see the value of buying more. I thought the video was brilliant, I felt warm and fuzzy and decided to order – once I got my finances in place for the month. That took a week. When I went back to the email and clicked on the link, it didn’t work. Not feeling warm and fuzzy anymore. Well, sure, the email said it was a limited time offer but it didn’t state an expiration date or that it was a one-time-only offer and once I clicked on the link it would end. Hmm, makes me wonder what their Why is.

Competition 
There is some competition out there. I tried Hair One‘s cleansing conditioner. It was a little less expensive but had the same problem when I got to the bottom third of the bottle. In addition, if the product didn’t go through the pump it was a different consistency: slippery and harder to hold. I think I’ll read everyone else’s reviews and try another brand. If you find a product that you like, please let me know. I’d love to try it!

Disclaimer: you know I hardly ever complain but I think everyone needs to know about this new product and beware of unknowingly signing up for auto-shipments.

Miracle Balls


My experience
My husband introduced me to The Miracle Ball Method when I was experiencing some pain in my shoulder. Tight muscles had caused pain and inflammation in my right shoulder and I was in excruciating pain. I was willing to try anything natural. Surprisingly, the method was simply to lie on the balls and relax. Who couldn’t use an excuse to relax? I started lying on the balls immediately and felt some relief after only a few days. My shoulder is now almost completely healed as well as a few other back issues I had. When I lie on the balls I know it’s working to release my muscles because I hear my back cracking as the muscles release and allow my spine and joints to move back to where they were born to be.

miracle-ball-kit

What these are
Have you ever seen a yoga ball? They are the large balls that people sometimes use for ab work. Well, Miracle Balls are made of a similar material but are only about five inches in diameter.

How they work
From the Miracle Ball website, “EPM [Elaine Petrone Method] trains your nervous system whereas most exercise programs focus on moving your muscles. EPM believes that in order to get the muscles to move easily without pain, the secret lies in training the brain to regain feeling in key parts of the body. A Body Dialogue is emphasized. This reciprocal communication of body to brain gives us the potential to experience movement integrating all parts of the body. Stress is then lifted from chronic pain areas of your body. Common areas of pain are low back, hips, shoulders, neck just to name a few.”

My tips
Tip 1: For added release I drape myself face-down over by 75cm yoga ball and relax. I’m providing traction to my back which also helps to release my lower back. Again, I can hear the vertebrae releasing as I do this.  

Tip 2: Strengthen your core, exercise and keep yourself in shape.

Tip 3: Many alignment problems are caused by injuries that aren’t properly healed. I see my chiropractor regularly and make special visits if I torque my back or fall (anyone shoveling snow?). By getting my spine realigned right away I prevent my muscles from getting used to protecting the injured area.

Tip 4: For an all over realignment of your body to its pre-misaligned state, consider Rolfing or Hellerwork. The way it was described to me, these methods release the fascia which allows the muscles to move properly. Rolfing is known to be very painful and Hellerwork is Rolfing that doesn’t hurt. Literally, the founder, Joseph Heller, was a Rolfer who devised a method of doing Rolfing without the associated pain.

Disclaimer: I’m not a doctor so please don’t take this as medical advice. See your doctor and show them the balls and talk about whatever exercises you’re going to do before you start.

View the Miracle Ball Method on Amazon.com: The Miracle Ball Method

Law of Attraction

We’ve all heard it, “Be careful what you wish for, you just might get it”, “Thoughts become things”, “What you resist persists”, “You get what you look for.”

WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN?!  That was kind of my daughter’s sentiment when I told her to focus on what she wanted instead of what she didn’t want. So I came up with a simple way of explaining it. You Netflix fans will get this right away.

I liken the law of attraction to Netflix (in a VERY general way). Netflix has a system for observing the movies and television shows I watch and then making suggestions for new shows and movies it thinks I’ll be interested in.

Think of it this way:

The movies I watch (like the thoughts I think and what I put my attention on) causes Netflix (the Universe) to make suggestions for what it figures I’m interested in (based on what I think) and brings me movies (life events and circumstances) based on what I’ve shown an interest in, whether it be movies or life experiences.

Got it? Simple, right? Give your attention to what you do want.

The conversation into the law of attraction goes much, much deeper so if you’re interested in this topic check out the books by Abraham-Hicks, Michael Beckwith and Happier than God by Neale Donald Walsch.