A Delicious Gluten-free, Dairy-Free, Sugar-Free Thankgiving Guide!

Have family or friends or maybe yourself who are coming for Thanksgiving who are on a special diet or have health issues and concerns and you don’t know how to manage? Whether you just want to eat healthy and delicious food or have a food/health issue…you don’t have to spend the whole day cooking and cleaning in the kitchen this Thanksgiving! Everyone that has eaten my Thanksgiving recipes all said they are as good or better than what they have had, and they did not miss the gluten, dairy or refined sugar! Wow, this is so wonderful and many heartfelt thanks!

Here is an easy guide to help you prepare things ahead of time you so you can enjoy your holiday and guests. Trust me after 20 years of doing this…it is so much easier that trying to be the Superhero on Thanksgiving…especially if something goes wrong-very embarrassing. Don’t be afraid to send the recipe to one of your guests/relatives and ask them to make it and bring it-delegate and accept the help. I know it is not easy, especially for people who like to be in control/charge! Remember, we allow others to grow and feel needed and be blessed by their contribution/help too. This is what helped me to realize micro-managing was stunting the growth of my employees! Let go, ah, it feels so good! There is still plenty for you to do.

I am listing all the goodies you can prepare ahead of time by day from my cookbook, No Wheat No Dairy No Problem-order it now on this site!

Up to one week ahead: Pie Crust (see Recipe of the Week-15 minutes), dairy-free and Gluten Free, Cranberry Sauce(refined sugar free and way better than anything that is store bought-15 minutes)

Up to three days ahead: Candied Yams( adapted from Paul Prudhomme)-40 minutes, Mashed Potatoes 30 minutes, Sweet Potatoe Pie Filling 10 minutes

Up to two days ahead: Dry Rub and refrigerate Turkey(fresh or frozen)-will be the juiciest ever!, clean your house or have it cleaned, do laundry etc..!;) See my directions for thawing turkey according to weight-must be done in the refrigerator. You can now buy a Brined or Kosher Turkey and skip this step.

The day before:  make salad dressing/vinaigrette, chill wine, Pecan Pie Filling, Cornbread for stuffing, chop vegetables(onion, celery etc…), Assemble and bake pie-Sweet Potato Pecan, Pecan, Pumpkin. I highly recommend the Sweet Potato Pecan-it’s a sure winner! See my utube video for rolling pie crust and dicing an onion at www.utube.com search under LaurenHooverAuthor and laugh out loud!;) You try being videotaped and then laugh at yourself…I did! Take a hot bath and get a good night sleep, you’ll need it. Spend quality time with those you love, play a game together, go for a walk etc… because Thanksgiving is so busy that you may not get a quality conversation in that day. It so important to remember to be thankful and tell our loved one’s how grateful we are for them-especially children…they really are not mind readers!;)

Vegan Lentil Loaf: Cook Lentils and Quinoa or Brown Rice

Go to the grocery store for anything you forgot and pack your patience-it will be crowded and filled with crying children and you(or your spouse) will circle several times to find a parking place-don’t give the teenagers the car today!

Thanksgiving day: Eat Breakfast so you are not ravenous all day and then get a stomach ache from not eating for hours-you will be so much happier and your family will be very thankful.This is a lovely time to have quality time with whomever is in your home before all the rest of the guests arrive and it is crazy.

Begin with a Clean Kitchen-which will keep you organized and calm. Set out ingredients, measure them out and follow the recipes. Have fun! I like relaxing or upbeat music playing while I cook.

Get the kids/husband/family/friends to set the table, build a fire,  decorate-it will keep them busy and out of your kitchen-unless they like to cook! Kids love to make the name tags for the place settings-great project to keep them entertained.

Vegan Lentil Loaf, make and bake! Prepare stuffing(cornbread or regular or Gluten Free) and chop herbs, Stuff Turkey and bake (see my recipe that was even good enough for a US Senator)! The secret…cooking it at a very high temperature will create  crispy skin and juicy meat- not to mention-save time and energy! Yum! Reheat Mashed Potatoes, Candied Yams in the oven or microwave if absolutely necessary, cook and chop vegetables and wash/spin salad greens-toss at the table. Teenagers who like to cook will love to make salad or this is a good item to ask some else to bring. Pour wine and enjoy!

I do not put out a lot of snacks…just a few to tide people’s appetite, but not spoil it for a huge dinner. Perhaps a bowl of nuts and some raw vegetables and hummus or dip and deviled eggs all of which can be made the day ahead or store bought(of course I make them myself)!

Important tips: See Professional Secrets and Tips section of my cookbook-it will help to ensure YOUR success.

Use  oven and digital read thermometers-temperature is key. Enlist help, people love to help. See my guide for cooking times according to the weight of the Turkey.

Clean(with hot water and soap) all surfaces, sinks, counters, cutting boards, utensils and hands that touch raw Turkey to prevent spreading salmonella-food poisioning.

Keep Turkey refrigerated at 38 degrees until ready to stuff and bake.

Stuff the Turkey just before baking so bacteria will not grow.

Do NOT and I repeat, DO NOT leave food out at room temperature for longer than 2 hours. It is best to put out smaller batches. Optimal Bacteria growth temperatures are between 40-140 degrees…yep, room temperature! It grows extremely rapidly by the hour after four hours throw it out. I hate waste…so I put out smaller portions or serve everything at once and put it away or send it home with guests just after eating. Only follow this advice if you want to avoid food poisoning or a big tummy ache-really you will be so much happier and healthier.

Final Tip/Preference: To baste or not to baste? I like to soak a large piece of cheesecloth in grapeseed oil, fold it in half and in half again to fit over the Turkey. Cover the Turkey with it and I do not baste if you  like a crispy skin. The high temperature will crisp the skin and seal in the juices. Resting the Turkey for 20-30 minutes is the ONLY way to have the juice stay in the meat. If you cut into the Turkey right away or before 20 minutes, watch all the juice run away and there is nothing to get it back into the meat…it will be dry, I promise.

Let someone else, especially the teenagers, do the dishes!

BTW, I did all of this in a cooking class last week in 3 1/2 hours with no help- I slept very well that night!  So, You can do it too. Just follow my recipes carefully-read them first. I like to read them the night before I cook/prepare them. and again just before making them. Buy my cookbook even if you only use the Thanksgiving recipes!

Take a deep breath, have a glass of  organic wine, relax and have a very Happy Thanksgiving. From my heart to yours…may you have much to be grateful for this year. I am so grateful for many things/people  including everyone who have been so supportive of my mission in helping you change your life  with delicious, healthy food. Thank you for all your continued support and passing the word about my blog, cookbook and Holistic Healing Journey. I am so grateful for you. What are who are you grateful for! A great question to have everyone go around the dinner table and answer….keeps the conversation positive!

Many Blessings, Be Well and Happy Thanksgiving, Chef Lauren Hoover-West

Virtual Retreat!

I AM SUPER EXCITED…..BIG ANNOUNCEMENT! There is a Virtual Retreat…yes a healing retreat with 7 very special healers(including me!)THIS WEEKEND OCTOBER 27-28, 2018!

It will all be Live and recorded on Zoom(you will get a link and do not need to have Zoom) so you can get an ABUNDANCE of healing tools and wisdom from all of us from the comfort of wherever you wish to be! Cool huh?!

Please join me…I really need the support since its my very FIRST LIVE VIRTUAL RETREAT! People fly all over the world to attend all of these coaches/healers retreats and seminars! And we have them all in one place without jet lag!

I will be presenting my training for 90 minutes on health and wellness through food, detox and stress reduction in body, mind and spirit! I will talk more about what my Healing Journey consists of that is beginning in January! I am also going to be making a tea that will gently detox and support your Liver which has hundreds of functions in the body-so the whole body will work better just from a cup of tea or (cuppa tea for the Brits)!

Get a tune up before the holidays and treat yourself for less than a therapy session for the whole weekend of fabulous Holistic Healing! More info on retreat and presenters, and to sign up on link below! Looking forward to having a really special weekend with you!

Love, Light & Blessings! Be Well & Thrive, Lauren

http://practiceselflove.com/virtual-retreats/?fbclid=IwAR2LEP-LQ39AfjAJkQmhxo-Z1cTpDxYojQK8aD0ylfrOP05x92zicV3mb_4

Halloween Candy Recipes!

Sorry everyone I forgot to update the Free Recipe Page, but there are lots of yummy, healthier versions of Halloween faves on it now! Have a safe and fun Halloween!

Remember a few things:

  • Avoid: These sweeteners are harmful and will cause adverse effects and are linked to  ADD/ADHD, Cancer, Diabetes and many other illnesses and disease and inflammation which is the beginning of all disease! Some are neurotoxins and endocrine disruptors! 
  • White Sugar Corn Syrup of any kind
  • Agave: 100% Fructose which congests the Liver and the Liver has over 200 functions including hormone balancing for both sexes!
  • Glucose(contains gluten)
  • Artificial Colors(Color # ??),
  • Artificial Flavor
  • Natural Flavors are not natural they are from a Laboratory!

Better Sweeteners: Remember the body still needs to process these as sugar, but they are less inflammatory and less damaging to the body. Keep them for an occasional treat, not for everyday. the best source of sweets is in fruit which contains the fiber and when organic, freshly picked and in season is better than any candy!

  • Dates(In season in October & November) I bought 8 different varieties at the Farmer’s market which were all different and delicious!
  • Real Maple Syrup(nothing else but maple syrup under ingredient list), dark color has more minerals
  • Coconut Sugar
  • Sugar Free: Sweet Leaf  Liquid Stevia

To learn more about sugar and sweeteners go to my Video Page and watch Dr. Lustig’s Bittersweet Truth about Sugar and Youtube for more of his lectures!

See Free Recipe Page on this Blog for you Healthier Sweet Treats! Enjoy!

 

Many Blessings

 

Be Well & Thrive because we get one shot at this lifetime to get it right! You deserve to be happy and healthy!

 

Halloween & Candy!

 

Happy Halloween! Sweet Treats without the sugar blues!

I have fond memories of trick or treating as a child and big hayride Halloween parties at school. Honesty, I really am not a fan of this holiday, but dressing up and eating sweets is a lot of fun!

If you are a parent, or human, you know that sugar blues that come after sugar highs can be really horrific! We know so much more about sugar these days and how it adversely affects our health. To name a few, Diabetes is a huge epidemic, and sugar is very hard on the pancreas, causes skin breakouts, cavities, mood swings, addiction, disease and more. None of the aforementioned are going to make us feel good and thrive in our lives.

So, you know me….I have a solution to this problem! I have lots of recipes and sweeteners you can use in your favorite recipes to transform them into a healthier, and tasty treat. A friend of mine says, you are not “treating” yourself when you eat something that harms your wellbeing, you are “mistreating” yourself! So true.  Go to my Recipes Page and get my kid-approved recipes that are a range of white sugar alternatives to sugar-free!

Psss, I am going to let you in on my secret of the week….I am making a Pumpkin Pie with Stevia Sweetener(www.ThriveMarket.com)  or coconut palm sugar, and I will enjoy it for breakfast! I will top it with coconut milk whipped cream! Husband, if you are reading this….I will save you some! ;P

Store bought candy. No time or interest in making your own treats? 

As a child, I loved Rolo carmel candies! I found some even better chococlate chewy caramels called Amelia, and they also make a dairy-free/Gluten-free, white sugar free version that will melt in your mouth as you are transported to Heaven!  If you like a soft carmel, and not so chewy, try Cocomels, which have coconut milk. My second favorite was Almond Joy, well I found a nut-free, dairy-free and gluten-free candy bar with coconut filling and a dark chocolate coating called OCHO(does contain organic cane sugar). Lily’s vegan stevia sweetened chocolate chips and bars are delicious. I buy all of these candies at local Health Food Stores and Thrive Market.

There are also sugar free lollipops at local health food stores that are good and without artificial dyes! Please avoid candy with artificial dyes as they cause many harmful neurological reactions in kids and adults. I have seen numerous children’s severe symptoms disappear when they are taken off all foods that contain artificial colors, dyes, sweeteners and flavors. I have even seen them taken off of Ritalin! There is always a reason for symptoms and behavior. You just need to care enough to figure it out and find experts to help you.

Note on Sweeteners: please do not use the stuff in pink or blue packets, it’s toxic and harmful to your health. Diet soda is the worst. Some of these artificial sweeteners are made from the same ingredient as ant poison!!!! YES! Try stevia sweetened soda called Zevia or Kevita Coconut Water Kefir which tastes like bubbly soda, and has probiotics. I like the pomegranate and Lime Mojito Kevita, black cherry Zevia the best. I did not like Dr. Pepper as a kid, but love the Dr. Zevia! If these are too sweet, cut them with sparkling water! I like Grolsteiner best b/c it tastes great, high in minerals and is in glass!

Soda:

Kid’s in my summer cooking camps loved Zevia! For the past 6 years I’ve been getting kids off soda by dipping a 1/4 cup measuring cup into a container of white sugar and asking them if they would pour it down their throat all at once! They all freaked out and unanimously replied, “NO WAY”! I enlightened them by telling them that a 12 ounce can of soda has that much sugar and a Big Gulp had double, 1/2 cup! Please share this with your kids, relatives and friends. Soda is one of the main reasons the kids are overweight along with the rise in diabetes and many other diseases.

In our camps we used 8 drops of flavored liquid Stevia by Sweet Leaf(variety of flavors including Root beer, Cola and Raspberry), and added it to sparkling water from glass bottles(avoiding harmful toxins in plastic bottles) and walah, you have homemade sugar-free soda that is bubbly and sweet which is what most of us love in a soda! Try this and let us all know how it goes/went! Caution: too much stevia will become quite bitter so, start slowly and add one drop at a time. Stevia is 250-300 times sweeter than sugar and is made from a leaf of a tree grown in South America.

Another sugar-free sweetener I like is Lakanto Monkfruit w/Erythritol which is ideal for people with SIBO or Candida, however some people do experience cramping, so eat it in moderation. Xylitol is great for teeth, but new research is showing that it can destroy good gut bacteria!

I still love coconut palm sugar as a 1 to 1 substitute for white sugar. White sugar is not only inflammatory, but also is bleached and often sifted through bones, so not vegan! YUCK! Have fun trying these sugar alternatives. Remember natural Real Maple Syrup is a good choice and local raw honey is also good.  If you are experiencing gas, bloating and burping seek a Naturopathic Doctor who will know how to cure it. In California go to www.CalND.org and elsewhere go to www.Naturopathic.org

Naturopathic Medicine saved my life and was able to diagnose me properly and treat me naturally with success! BTW, my husband is a Naturopathic Doctor. I am so grateful for him and Naturopathic Medicine which has been working well for years!

If you want to feel like you are back in college, get your teens or Mom’s together and go to my Video page and get educated about sugar by Dr. Lustig’s talk, “The Bittersweet Truth about Sugar”! It will blow your mind. Please share it. This can save our lives and the one’s we love. Sending you all love and hugs so you can Thrive living the life you dreamed!

Be safe and have fun! Snack Safely has a list of safe snacks that are gluten-free, dairy-free and nut-free, but do read ingredients and choose wisely. Just because it is free of what you are avoiding doesn’t mean it is good for you!

Get your FREE Recipes on the Recipe Page on this blog!

Happy Halloween with good Treats! Boo!

Happy Back to School & New Year!

Wow summer sure flew by didn’t it?! I have been super busy and super excited to share with you a few things:

1. I hope you all had a great summer. I must first apologize for not posting more often, but I have been passionately working on a NEW 12 WEEK HOLISTIC HEALING JOURNEY that will launch in October/November…so, stay tuned! I will be offering YOU, MY AWESOME FOLLOWERS, A HUGE DISCOUNT! Thanks to tech we can now work together!

2. I went to a life-changing retreat in Florida and met a super-talented new friend who is Hosting a Virtual Summit & Retreat with 7 Talented Healers of all kinds(mind, body, spirit)!! I have been invited to Present about healing through food and diet on a Virtual Healing Summit/Retreat! I really hope you will join us for the free calls and sign up for the Summit and please share this on your FB/Social Media. oxox This will blow your mind and touch your heart. For more info http://practiceselflove.com/virtual-retreats/

3. Finally, my new favorite Bagel! Yes I said Bagel! OMG, IT IS THE BEST I’VE HAD IN 18 YEARS OF BEING GLUTEN-FREE & DAIRY-FREE! See my Recipe page for a homemade Dairy-free Cream Cheese recipe-after you read this article/interview!

I have longed for a chewy New York Style Bagel that is gluten-free, dairy-free and egg-free  for 18 years, and FINALLY  found one after trying every single one I could find on the store shelves which were all light, airy and so unsatisfying! I cannot tell you how many bagels I have thrown away and finally gave up until this summer when I found an Everything Bagel while shopping at Bi-Rite Market in San Fransisco.

I felt like a kid on Christmas Eve b/c I could not wait until the next morning to have my new Bagel! Then, I realized I needed to make some cashew cream cheese first…and the wait was prolonged! I could hardly wait for it to come out of the toaster as smells of home-baked bread with onion and garlic wafted across my kitchen. And, When I finally got my Bagel and Cashew Cream Cheese,  without all the allergens, I was in food Heaven…a Sally met Harry foodgasm moment happened! So, I had to call the company that made it and…

I interviewed Andre of the ODD BAGEL COMPANY, in Oakland, and here is what he had to share.

Our story started in 2013 when my business partner, Brent Woodard, discovered he was gluten intolerant. Having lived nearly a decade in New York (as did I, coincidentally), his perfect morning routine was a cup of coffee and a bagel with cream cheese – which he now sorely missed. He tried a lot of the options out there, but everything he found was severely lacking; they were primarily just “bread in a loop”, and not even very good bread, at that.
Luckily, Brent’s a very process-minded guy, so he went in the kitchen and started experimenting until he found a recipe that actually started to resemble a “real” bagel. He started small, baking every night and making drops every single morning to couple coffee shops and places like Berkeley Bowl and Saul’s in Berkeley.
Fast forward a few years, and after finding space in a number of shared kitchens over the years, we finally moved into our own dedicated bakery space last year. Most importantly, this means we are now finally working out of a true, dedicated gluten free facility (and as mentioned, will hopefully be certified gluten free as soon as tomorrow!). But it has also allowed us to really accelerate the improvement of the recipe. It also let us get our Kosher designation.
From day one, once we were gluten free, we didn’t really want to stop there – we wanted to make this a bagel that was accessible to everyone. Step one was to make it a vegan bagel, as well. Most true bagels ARE already vegan, but a lot of the gluten free options use egg as a binding agent. Besides the vegan aspect, we also noticed that a lot of people try to avoid dairy and eggs for a wide variety of dietary reasons, including allergies. So, Odd Bagels became a gluten free AND vegan bagel! 
But we didn’t stop there – we’ve also managed to avoid using peanuts, tree nuts, corn, soy, and potato – a large portion of the top allergens out there. (Also no shellfish… 😉  ) Then, in the past year, we’ve also been able to eliminate the sugar and oil from our recipe. We’ve ended up with a highly refined recipe that is really just “simple”, and gets back to the elements of what makes a bagel a good, baked item!
Our final step is that we also hope to transition to organic by the end of this year, which has finally become realistic now that we’re a bit bigger – it’s hard to find organic, gluten-free flours, unless you have it milled specifically.
I think that’s really what sets us apart from a lot of the other gluten-free options: the fact that we are really accessible to just about anyone. That’s pretty hard to find in the Bay Area, even without talking about gluten-free! And most importantly, we’re a real New York style bagel that is boiled and baked! 
And even more most importantly… Odd Bagels are delicious! Although I might be just a little biased when I say that. 🙂 That covers a lot of our story!, said Andre.
Okay, even your friends and family that don’t think they have a problem with gluten, dairy, egg or any other food will looooovvvvveeee these Bagels! I recommend you make your own cream cheese(my recipe) or buy dairy-free Kite Hill Almond Chive Cream Cheese. Great with Smoked Salmon or Lox-see recipe later.
 I order 12 bags at a time, the Everything is the #1 seller and its delish, the plain is great for when you want to spread something sweet on top like jam or nut butter. They have many more flavors.
These bagels DO NOT NEED TO BE REFRIGERATED, so you can send them to school or take them on outings and traveling. The shelf life is 10 days without refrigeration and a month in the refrigerator and a few months in the freezer! I recommend buying a lot if you have the space in your freezer b/c you are going to want more. Do remember that they are high in carbs so, if you want to release some weight keep them in the freezer and save them for a weekend treat! If you need to gain weight, these will help and I say go for it as long as you are eating a lot of healthy food too! I will post recipes on my Recipe Page. Hey, lets help this small artisan company grow…ask your local grocery store to carry them! Get them now and you’ll have them by next week and for Yom Kippur. Happy Holidays and Back to School! Oh, do toast them for sure!
Just for YOU my readers: Order Online a discount code. Enter “LAUREN” at checkout, you’ll get 15% off your first order with ODD BAGEL which expires at the end of September! Order now! http://www.oddbagel.com

Water & Water Filters

Are you drinking enough water? The formula is to drink 1/2 your weight in ounces…if you weigh 150 pounds, you need to drink 75 ounces of water per day and you will feel much better and your body will work much better. Often people are dehydrated and do not realize it when they are feeling a little fatigued or low energy, have a headache, constipated etc…

I use to hate drinking water b/c it did not taste as good as juice or soda! Wow, was I dehydrated and constipated with headaches! When I stopped drinking soda, I lost 10 pounds in 2 weeks!!!! Yep! God forbid you even think of drinking Diet soda…please please do not! That is a whole other blog post, but it is made of rat poison and associated with cancer and diabetes!

So, a friend of mine told me if you start carrying a bottle of water everywhere you go, you will drink it! OMG, she was so right and it worked…I became a water drinker and now am proud and pleased to say I love it. I do not leave home without taking 2 stainless steel bottles with me! And, they are almost always empty by the time I get home from running around or working! Hit the Easy button people…carry a stainless or glass bottle! I really love Swell b/c they are double insulated and keep beverages cold or hot all day or longer! Luv Swell & they are pretty/handsome!

Is the water you are drinking safe? What kind of containers/bottles/glasses are you using? Many people ask me what water filter I use or recommend. I have had pitcher type filters like Brita and Pure. There are a few things that I do not like about them…the filters are expensive and don’t last long, and the containers are plastic. Even if plastic is BPA Free, there are tons of other harmful chemicals in plastic, and it is not safe. If you insist or have no other option when you are traveling, please buy water in glass bottles! And put your filtered water into stainless steel or glass bottles or jars. You will help yourself and the environment! Plastic is an endocrine and neuroendocrine disruptor…your brain, organs and glands of the endocrine system will not work properly if you are poisoning it!

Endocrine system includes: hypothalamus, pituitary, thyroid, parathyroids, adrenals, pineal, reproductive organs(ovaries/testes), pancreas and hormones! So you want your brain, glands and organs to work well, drink clean, filtered water.

There is so much plastic in our oceans that are negatively effecting our wild sea life and our oceans. Have you seen the pictures of beaches in Bali being covered, and I mean covered for miles, in plastic bottles? OMG, it is hard to imagine and believe…disgusting! I thought is was the lazy tourist and with more research have learned that much of it is coming from China and washing up onto Bali’s shores and beaches…tragic.

Please stop drinking water from plastic. We recently visited Fiji for a big big b-day present to me and I love Fiji water, but hate that it is in plastic. Sadly, I broke my cardinal rule and drank the local water and came home with a parasite/amoeba, not fun! It gone thanks to my Naturopathic doctor husband!

It is so important not to drink the over 300 contaminants(petro-chemical runoff, heavy metals, carcinogens, prescriptions(hormones, antibiotics, anti-psychotic etc…),fluoride, chlorine etc…) in tap water, especially city tap water! Fluoride and chlorine are very harmful to your thyroid and there is an epidemic of low thyroid and Hashimotos an Autoimmune disease of the Thyroid! I am blessed enough to have a well, but it has not always been that way and may not be forever. Well water still needs to be filtered.

It takes over 17 million barrels of oil to product the plastic required for bottle waters consumed by Americans in a year, which is enough oil to fuel more than 1 million cars for an entire year. Over 50 million bottles end up in landfills each year!!! Imagine the difference we can make by just using a re-usable bottle instead!?

Recently we have been pouring the water out of the plastic into a glass pitcher as soon as it is filtered. And, we just invested in an environmentally friendly new reverse osmosis/carbon filter countertop system. Many of my favorite doctors and health professionals have endorsed it, and now I do as well. I like AquaTru b/c there is no need to drill holes in an expensive counter and it is portable. Its also great for renters!

One other place people often do not realize they need to put a filter is YOUR SHOWER! Yes, your shower….all those chemicals in your water are entering your skin and then straight into your bloodstream within 30 seconds where they are doing major damage to your health! Get a shower filter and remember to change it at least once a year….we do it at Christmas…easy to remember! And, please change your refrigerator filters if you use them…they get moldy too! Yuck!

The filters in AquaTru will last 6 months to a year compared to 2 weeks to a month in a pitcher type filter. You can buy extra to keep on hand and sign up for auto-ship too. We did and we also purchased the mineral drops to add back into our water. Our food does not contain enough vitamins and minerals since farmers are no longer rotating crops and letting fields go unused in order to re-mineralize and feed them!

Check it out here and use this link and get a deal and I will make a little something for sharing it as an Affiliate. Some benefits: no plumber needed, fits on countertop, portable, filters out many more contaminants than other water filtration systems.

  • AquaTru uses Tritan plastic, the same BPA & BPS free plastic used in best-selling food blenders like Nutri Bullet and Vitamix. Tritan has been tested at universities and independent third-party labs and the results have overwhelmingly demonstrated that it is safe and free of estrogenic and androgenic activity. If you prefer to avoid all plastics, you can simply transfer the purified water into a glass pitcher after the filtering process.

Here is to your health & I am off to go enjoy some clean, safe water! 🙂 I have recipes on how to infuse your water to taste really good! See the Recipe Page for more ideas.

Be Well & Thrive, don’t just survive!

 

To learn more(info, videos etc…) and decide if you would like to have one go to: https://www.aquatruwater.com?src=affiliate&aid=42691

 

Happy St. Patricks, Easter & Passover!

Wishing you a very happy Easter. May you have a lovely time with friends and family. I am posting recipes for you here

I love American Lamb that is pasture-raised, grass-fed and organic because it is mild in flavor, healthier and more loving and kind way of raising animals than factory farms! If you like a strong gamey flavor then you may prefer Australian Lamb. If you think you don’t like Lamb, try American and see if you change your mind. My favorite is Neiman Ranch.

If you must drink green beer, please make it gluten-free(see a list on the Recipes Page) and use natural green color, available at health food stores and online. Artificial colors and dyes and flavors cause a host of adverse health issues including neurological damage and brain disfunction. These cause severe reactions in children, especially children on the Spectrum(ADD, ADHD, Autism etc…)…it sends them into violent rage or just super hyper behavior. PLEASE DO NOT EVER EAT OR FEED PEOPLE/ESPECIALLY CHILDREN ARTIFICIAL COLOR/DYE/FLAVORS! If a label has a color with a number, i.e. Red #5, it is artificial and detrimental to health and well-being. Buy the powdered natural vegetable dirived colors if you must color things.

I don’t know why, but I think of Lemon and Lime at Easter time. So, I’ve posted my favorite Lemon Tart recipe & Sugar-free Lime Yogurt/Mousse for you. The Lemon Curd is delicious on Scones or as a cake filling. You may want to use 1-2 teaspoons of kudzu or arrowroot to thicken it more. If you use it for cake filling, be sure to refrigerate or freeze, until well set, the filled cake BEFORE you try to frost it or it will slide all over! I learned that one the hard way!

 

Happy eating, cooking, baking and celebrating what is important to you. Remember Love is the answer to everything!

Blessings

Vegetables

I don’t usually post recipes on this page, but thought you would like a new veggie for the New Year! I loved potatoes, but they are a nightshade which can cause a lot of pain in one who has inflammation and particularly arthritis! Nightshades are all in the same family and they are tomatoes, potatoes, eggplant and all peppers both hot and sweet/bell.

A study was conducted in Italy that correlated nightshades with increased pain in arthritis. I had really achy joints especially in my fingers, so I decided to remove them and within less than a week my pain went away! When I try to eat a raw tomato or potato now, I pay for it the next day with terrible pain in my fingers.

I have gotten bed-ridden patients back into their gardens and onto their sailboats having fun by just removing nighshades! This is why it can be good to see a Nutrition Coach! We have secrets that can get you out of pain and suffering! 🙂

Some great alternatives for potatoes are Jerusalem Artichokes and Yuca and Cauliflower which are all available now! I hated Cauliflower, but when I mashed it I loved it. So, I teach my culinary students that sometimes we don’t like something because of flavor, but other times it can be texture! Yuca is excellent diced and boiled in salted water like potatoes, just mash them by hand and keep some lumps or it turns into glue! You can reheat leftover Yuca in oil and it gets crispy on the outside and creamy on the inside!

Here’s a recipe I bet you have not tried: Enjoy!

Jerusalem Artichokes

These tubers remind me of potatoes. You can even eat the skin! You can eat them raw or cooked. They can be sliced and sauteed in oil or oven roasted or steamed then mashed or braised in water and coconut milk. These are high in prebiotics which feed probiotics(healthy bacteria), but if you have SIBO they will feed the bad bacteria so avoid them and try peeled Kohlrabi instead using the same cooking methods. 

Serves 4

Ingredients:

1 pound Jerusalem artichokes, washed well(they are sandy)

Avocado or Grapeseed Oil or Olive Oil(cook on medium heat or 350 degrees)

Directions:

  1. Wash, and slice thinly by hand or in a food processor or a mandolin.
  2. Put into a large saute pan in a single layer for maximum browning. You can use 2 pans or cook in a few batches.
  3. Saute over medium heat in a stainless steel or cast iron pan for 3-5 minutes until golden brown on one side.
  4. Turn over and cook until golden, about 3-5 minutes.
  5. Season with sea salt or Himalayan salt and freshly ground pepper.
  6. Serve hot.

Roasting: slice or cut into quarters and drizzle with oil and salt and pepper. Bake until fork tender, about 15 minutes.

Braising: dice and put into a larger pan or pot with 1/2 water and 1/2 coconut milk just halfway up to the middle of the Jerusalem Artichokes. Bring to a boil, turn down to low and simmer until fork tender, 8-10 minutes. Drain and season with salt and pepper. Juniper salt if very good on these. I make my own Juniper salt with 1/4 cup Himalayan salt and 1 tsp. whole organic Juniper berries and grind until fine in a coffee grinder.

Steam: wash well and quarter. Steam in a pot until fork tender, about 10 minutes. Serve with vegan butter or olive oil and salt and pepper. You may also mash them by hand or in a food mill or food processor.

Be adventurous and try these out! I hope you love them as much as I do. Happy cooking and eating! Please Comment and let us know how you do and how you like these veggies!

Be Well & Thrive in 2018!

My Birthday Request!

I had a wonderful birthday thanks to my loving husband who got me a few massages and very gourmet dinners! It was such a treat to eat out at some bucket list restaurants and be accommodated, with pleasure, for gluten-free and dairy-free, no beef! It was memorable. I try to not feel guilty indulging in eating out for special occasions knowing that people are very hungry here in my back yard and in America! So many people do not realize its not only in developing countries that people go without food. I don’t know about you, but most of us and myself included, don’t function or sleep when we are hungry! Imagine being a child or elderly or any age feeling so hungry you cannot sleep or think or function! This is just so wrong and totally avoidable and fixable.

I feel so upset about so many things that feel so wrong in America. I get really broken hearted and pissed off and at times I feel so helpless to change things! Here are some ways that I have chosen to fix and help and I am asking that if you are able and willing that as a gift to others and me on my birthday, you will donate or volunteer if you feel led to do so. Check this out:

Charities I love and donate to are:

People:
FeedingAmerica.org 

$1 provides 10 meals!! That makes a huge impact!

Charitywater.org , provides fresh safe water wells and allows girls to go to school instead of fetching water all day! This is one of my top charities! This has a huge impact!

Environment: Planting Trees
http://www.americanforests.org, plant trees

Animals:
Save Elephants: www.BigLife.org

www.aspca.org, saves abused/neglected animals, our family has had all rescue animals and they were so loving and grateful and became cherished family members

Humane Society of Silicon Valley http://www.hssv.org/ 

or donate to the humane society or animal shelter in your own community!

Thank you for checking these out and donating if you feel led to do so and sharing this too! Thank you to all who donate and please post if you like that you did! Blessings to all who donate and volunteer.

Much Love, Gratitude and Blessings, Lauren Hoover-West

Happy, Healthy New Year! A Love Letter from Me to You!

From my heart and soul to yours…I wish you a very happy, healthy 2018!  Please take the time to read this entire heart felt letter from my heart to yours. I don’t do this often!

This is a new beginning. A time to reflect on what we accomplished in 2017 and what we learned and how we grew.

This is an opportunity to forgive ourselves for any shortcomings, and to affirm that we did the best we could at the time with what we knew and were able at the time. A very wise quote I hear is that, “Forgiveness is looking back and knowing that nothing could have been different, and learning from it.”

Today we can start setting our intentions, goals, hopes and dreams for our best in 2018! My husband and I love to pull out all the magazines and make a vision board this time of year to solidify and put onto paper our hopes, dreams, intentions and goals. Every time we do this we can look at it throughout the year and see things coming to us and feeling so grateful and blessed. Then, at the end of the year we are in awe and enormous gratitude that not only did most or all of these things on our board come true, but we were blessed with so much more. It works! It really really works! I promise you.

Making a vision board:

Get a big poster board, glue stick, magazines and markers, or print out words & pictures from your computer.

Draw two lines on your board to make 4 equal squares.

Give each square a category like:

  • Work/Career
  • Personal Growth
  • Family/Romance/Marriage
  • Fun/Travel
  • Spiritual Life/Growth
  • Volunteer/Giving Back/Paying it Forward
  • Physical Well-being(exercise, diet, stress reduction)
  • …you may need to make 2 vision dream boards!!

Then, cut up those magazines…mind you, you may need to go buy some positive magazines or create your own words, and pictures or print from internet! Be creative and don’t limit yourself…DREAM BIGGER!

Remember we are a body, mind and spirit and all of these aspects of ourselves need to be tended to like a garden. What does your body, mind and soul need and long for at this moment?

You may like to put on meditative or classical music and do a meditation and prayer before starting this project.

How do you want to be a positive influence on this world, on your community, on your friends and family, at work? Shine Brightly this year, be big and bright! The world needs us all to come together and SHINE and love and support each other for the greatest good. Love conquers ALL! We all need more LOVE! How will you show your love and compassion this year? What matters to you? What charities can you volunteer or contribute to this year? Start at home and with your neighbors! Too many times we forget the people within our reach and think we have to go to great places and lengths…when the people who need us most are right in front of us!

My prayer is that 2018 will bring all of us our heart’s desires and all our needs will be surpassed with many blessings. I am sending you all so much love, many blessings and a big hug.

I promise that I will walk my talk and will post my vision board soon. Some of the things I am doing are:

  1. helping each patient I have as if they were the only patient I will ever have…helping them heal with love, patiences and kindness along with great tasting, healthy food!!! ;P
  2. Being a more loving and kind person
  3. Volunteering at the Animal Shelter and giving animals as much love and attention and healing I am able.
  4. Learning as much as I need to grow in order to help others with their health(physical, mental and emotional)

Donating to causes that call to my heart and bring tears to my eyes(Feeding Hungry Children and Americans, Building Wells for clean water and education for girls that would otherwise have to spend their days fetching water! Saving Elephants! Planting Trees! Shopping Consciously on Thrive Market and local farmers markets, small artisan companies, CredoBeauty.com, Credo Cell Phone Service, Buying organic, local, sustainable, reducing our footprint, Spending time with Animals! Blogging/Vlogging more helpful information. Living more mindfully each day, one day and one moment at a time. Surrendering to going with what arrives and arises. Healing my own health. Loving my husband better. Giving up control! Stepping into other peoples shoes asking myself what they must be feeling before I respond….finding the silence between the many thoughts that bombard me…quieting my monkey mind. Accepting that I am enough. Learning to love myself more…this will be my biggest challenge!

Looking back at 2017, it was a very challenging year for me. I had many health challenges because I did not listen to my body, or my loving Husband, screaming at me to slow down and to stop. Now, I am forced to stop some things and really slow down and change some of my habits and create better ones. Not easy, but essential to living my best life. That said, I also did do some positive things like learning to play the violin which gave me great joy and also taught me balance! I lost my balance because I played so much everyday for 7 months that I developed tendonitis in my elbow! I had to stop playing, which saddened me, for a few months and I healed my elbow…along with CBD Oil Balm! Now, I will resume with more balance…playing 10 minutes every other day and slowly working up to more as my body allows.

I have learned that being ambitious vs. being stupid is a delicate balance! I have pushed myself hard, too hard, for too long and it has lead to poor health and mental exhaustion. I have momentarily lost that sense of drive b/c I am just exhausted.

Some things I have found to be helpful are remembering to use the tools and resources in my box! Listening to Hay House Radio .com and APP, turning off the news and only listening or reading the weeks review on Friday, Listening to educational webinars, summits, podcasts and Pandora Radio. Music is so healing and moves my soul! Watching documentaries and comedy and movies that touch my heart. Starting my day with opening my eyes and being grateful, finding something to appreciate, praying and setting my intention for the day, swinging my feet out of bed and grounding myself and lighting up all my chakras, releasing any negative energy and bringing in the love of God throughout my whole body and resonating love, setting a morning routine that makes me feel good(sauna, hot shower, aromatherapy, hot drink, healthy breakfast, supplements, petting my kitty and sending him outside surrounded in love and God’s protection, sending my husband out into the world with love, a good healthy lunch and God’s love and protection and surrounding him with Angels to work though him with ease and grace to heal all of his patients(who adore him)! Remembering throughout the day to take breaks, go in the sunshine, breathe deeply, do a short meditation, listen to music, learn something new, reach out to someone who needs some love or my time or just to listen to them(hard for me), and keeping my balance throughout the day! Finishing my day with a prayer of gratitude, telling my husband how much I love and appreciate him, telling our fur baby that I love him and feeding him the best raw food diet money can buy, listening to a meditation(Glenn Harrold Relax & Sleep) and setting the intention of what I want to dream about! I have also bought a library of books to read and now I need to use time management to schedule that in along with my violin playing! Remembering to schedule in fun and time to do NOTHING! Time to remember to use my 5 senses and take in the here and now!

Every time I start to freak out that the world is going to Hell and wonder where I can move to that is better…I stop myself, look around and get really grateful and give myself a reality check…all is well at this moment for me and I am blessed, safe and grateful! You can do this too. It works so well! I think of Cher, saying “Snap out of it”!!! ;P Old movie!

Also I have a milestone birthday next week, and its been a very interesting year of shifting for me in all areas of my life and mind and body! At my age, I will not say, I am learning to be wiser…thank God! I am now listening to my body, mind and spirit and honoring what it needs and wants. I am trying to live more simply and mindfully. What was once important to me is no longer. I am focusing on what really matters and how I can use my life to matter…really matter and leave a positive legacy. I believe that I came here with what I am suppose to have and to be…each day I try to use my gifts for the greatest good. I always feel I could and should do more. I am setting the intention that I will do my best at the time and that it will be enough. I wish that for everyone.

I am so inspired by watching Oprah interview amazing people who have had an enormous positive impact on countless people on Super Soul Sunday. This is my Sunday morning ritual to watch and be inspired while sipping my Matcha Tea Latte(see recipe on Resources page)! I never feel that I am making a big enough difference or that I can, and seeing that 1 person really can have a huge impact inspires me and drowns out my own insecurity and false beliefs! Watch and be inspired…there are still super good hearted people doing super good things in this world…we just forget especially when we get sucked into the news and media hype!

If we all focus on being loving and kind and radiating that energy into the world imagine what an impact and ripple effect it causes!!!! Just close your eyes,  take a deep breath and IMAGINE! I truly hope that I am helping you on your journey because you matter….you really matter. You are loved….very loved….but you must open your heart and receive that love. Let love flow into your heart and from your heart to all.

Now, be safe and have a fun and wonderful New Years Eve and Day! We are off to a spiritual celebration tonight with friends and community to ring the New Year in with a healthy dinner, meditation, dancing and healthy dessert, yes there is such a thing!!! Be safe, use UBER & LYFT, read my post on Gluten-free Alcohol and stick to your diet…no cheating! Until I post next time…be safe and you take good care of YOU! Find at least one new tool you will use in 2018, many are listed above. Now, go make that vision board and please post on this blog post that you did it! Share it on your FB!

Happy, Healthy, Fun 2018! May you be blessed beyond your wildest dreams. May you thrive instead of survive! I am here for all of you who are ready, willing and able to address your diet to create a customized diet and meal plan with recipes just for you according to your health. Feel free to contact me for Health Coaching. Find a Naturopathic Doctor if you don’t have one: in CA, wwwCALND.org, outside of CA, www.Naturopathic.org…need to find one through these sites to ensure they have have had a 4 year degree/are Licensed ND’s & primary care physicians and not a unlicensed Naturopath that only took an 18 month course! Get your team together to support you for your highest good! Thanks for taking the time to read this love letter and for supporting my life’s work/passion in helping you Thrive.

Blessings and Hugs!