Coconut oil can be used for a lot of things.
You can cook with it not only does it tastes delicious and the health benefits are astounding!
Coconut oil is great in showers. It is a great cleanser as well as a moisturizer. You can also keep it on your nightstand as a moisturizer. There is a lot to be said for anything that is chemical free that we can use on our bodies. There are some people who use coconut oil on their faces.
Coconut oil is great to massage into your scalp. It is nice for the hair and the skin.
Coconut oil is great in raw food recipes:
- You can use 1 tsp of coconut oil daily in my morning smoothie. It gives it such a nice texture and it is so good for you. (below)
- You can use coconut oil in raw protein bars. It gives them a lovely texture, flavor and holds them together nicely.
- You can use coconut oil in treats, i.e. chocolate, mushroom, chia pudding (for immunity and strength) with a teaspoon of coconut oil in to add smooth creaminess too.
- You can add coconut oil in hot tea with a pinch of raw cacao for a special treat as well.
- You can even use coconut oil with cashews and stevia to make a delicious frosting.
There are a lot of ways to use coconut oil there are even more reasons why you should.
Coconut oil has lauric acid, caprylic acid, capric acid. These acids give it antimicrobial, antifungal, antibacterial and antioxidant abilities. It is mostly saturated fat, 92% with a small percentage being mono unsaturated and poly unsaturated. Coconut oil is a healthy fat.
Some of the benefits that are attributed to coconut oil include (but not limited to):
- Weight loss
- Heart disease
- Healing and infections
- Kidney stones
- Liver disease
- Bone loss
- Tooth decay
- Hormone regulation
“Coconut oil has fewer calories than any other fat source. Unlike the high-calorie, cholesterol-soaked, long-chain, saturated animal fats found in meat and dairy products, coconut cream and coconut oil are made of raw saturated fats containing mostly medium-chain fatty acids that the body can metabolize efficiently and convert to energy quickly.”(Wolfe, 2009)
Coconut oil also helps to regulate blood sugar. It is one fat that diabetics can eat without fear.
I’d like to share a funny story about coconut oil and weight loss is from the 1940′s. Coconut oil was used by some farmers to help fatten up their cows however; the opposite happened the cows actually became leaner.
Coconut oil is useful for bone and dental health because it improves calcium and magnesium absorption. This is good for dental health. It is especially beneficial to women who are at the age to develop osteoporosis.
When you go to order or purchase your coconut oil this is what you should look for:
organic-raw-extra virgin-cold pressed.
There is also coconut water, shredded coconut and coconut butter!
One of my all-time favorite ways to use coconut oil is in oil pulling. Have you tried it? It’s amazing!!!
HOW TO DO OIL PULLING:
Put 1-2 teaspoons of organic coconut oil into the mouth
Swish for 5-20 minutes
Spit oil into the trashcan
Rinse well with warm sea salt water to release all the bacteria and toxicity in your mouth
Brush your teeth
Add coconut oil to your household, you will not be sorry!
We have all done it: extended our R.E.M. cycles by hitting the snooze button once or twice, maybe even three times. The payoff for those precious extra minutes of sleep often ends up with a mad dash out the door forgoing breakfast. This morning ritual couldn’t be more counterproductive. Your body has just spent hours resting and recovering from the prior day’s activities and now needs fuel to tackle the new day ahead.
Here are a few of my favorite on-the-go breakfasts that will help you get your day off to a great start. All of them can be adapted to meet your dietary lifestyle.
If you literally don’t have a moment to spare, then you are going to love a morning parfait. It can be prepared the night before, and all you need to do is open the fridge, grab it, and go. You will need a small container, store-bought or homemade granola, yogurt of your choice, and optional fruit. Depending on the season, I like using berries, apples, peaches, or mangos. Place some granola on the bottom of the container. Next, add some of the yogurt, and then add the fruit. Repeat these layers and you are done.
With a little more planning and a bit more time in the morning, you can enjoy a delicious breakfast wrap. You don’t need many ingredients to create this protein-rich breakfast. Gather up your favorite veggies, some eggs, a tortilla of your choice (wheat flour, gluten-free, or corn), rice, and cheese (optional). The night before, place a variety of vegetables in a roasting pan with a bit of EVOO, and roast at 450°F for around 20 minutes. I have used combinations of zucchini, summer squash, onions, garlic, carrots, red peppers, broccoli, and eggplant. Really, the list is endless. Save these veggies for the morning.
In the morning, scramble up one or two eggs or egg whites, and add the veggies, seasoning, and optional cheese. Place everything in a tortilla, and it’s a wrap. Out the door you go.
What is more convenient than breakfast in a cup? In the time it takes to brew up some coffee or steep some tea, you can blend together a nutrient-rich smoothie. Here is a basic smoothie recipe that you can adapt and make your own:
1 cup milk, almond milk, coconut milk, or rice milk
1 cup mixed berries – blueberries, strawberries, raspberries
1 cup kale
1 cup water
¼ cup kefir
1 tablespoon of chia seeds
Be well & Inspired,
Your Wellness Warrior
Cravings happen even to the healthiest of us. Often, when a craving hits in the afternoon or the evening after dinner, we get the urge to snack. Snacking can be a bad habit to get into, because the snacks we choose are often junky, un-nutritious, and high in calories, sugar, or fat.
The trick to snacking without piling on the pounds is to find healthy alternatives to the regular snacks you might normally reach for.
Usually, when we get a craving it is for either something sweet (chocolate!), savory (potato chips!), creamy (ice cream!), or crunchy (crisps!). Obviously, my examples are foods you shouldn’t eat all the time if you want to be trim and healthy. But that doesn’t mean you have to fight your cravings for the rest of your life. Instead, you just need to substitute.
Next time you get a craving for something sweet, why not try:
• fresh, whole fruit
• apples and almond butter
• dried fruit
• green smoothies
• banana “ice cream” (peel a banana, freeze, blend in a food processor with nuts, berries or raisins ,and serve)
• dates stuffed with almond butter or other nut butter
• organic dark chocolate chips or carob chips
For your savory cravings, try these healthy alternatives:
• pickles and pickled vegetables, such as carrot, daikon, beets, and lotus root
• tabouli, hummus
• steamed vegetables with tamari/shoyu or umeboshi vinegar
• freshly made salsa or guacamole
• Sauerkraut (will also knock your sweet craving right out!)
• salted edamame
Your creamy cravings can be met by eating:
• rice pudding
• dips and spreads, like hummus and baba ghanoush
• puréed soups
• puddings made with silken tofu, avocado, or mashed banana
• mashed sweet potatoes
• coconut milk
Finally, don‘t cave and reach for the Pringles, when you can eat these crunchy (but still healthy) snacks:
• frozen grapes
• rice cakes
• light popcorn or plain popcorn (use coconut oil to pop in a covered pan)
• carrots (particularly the sweet, organic baby carrots)
• celery and nut butter
• raw, unsalted nuts like cashews, almonds, and walnuts
Don’t fight your craving. Instead, listen to what it is your body wants specifically and choose the healthier option that will be good to your waistline.
Be well & Inspired!
Your Wellness Warrior
You may have heard the news…the avocado crops are suffering from the crazy weather this winter. We’ll still be able to find them in stores, but we can also expect to pay more for them. And, they are totally worth it!
- I love that your decadence tastes sinfully delicious, yet it’s the “healthiest” of fats.
- I love that you make my skin beautiful. The antioxidants in avocados help to get rid of toxins that promote premature aging and wrinkling of the skin. A lot of the toxins on your facial skin are the residue of makeup. Applying 1 mashed avocado as a facial mask and leaving it on for about 20 minutes before rinsing will help to remove these toxins and soften the skin. I promise, in the end, you will not look like the Wicked Witch of the West.
- I love to use you as a spread on my Ezekiel bread toast with a sprinkle of pink Himalayan sea salt, and red pepper flakes.
- I love that you make my hair shiny. One avocado mashed and mixed together with 1 egg and your favorite essential oil is great for conditioning your hair. The healthy oils in the avocado help to moisturize and soften dry and brittle hair, and the vitamin E helps to restore a natural shine to your hair. To obtain these benefits simply massage the avocado and egg mixture into your hair and scalp and leave in for about 20 minutes. Then wash and condition with your favorite shampoo and conditioner.
- I love to use you in my salads. Any kind of salad.
- I love to use you on my sandwiches in place of mayonnaise.
- I love that you complete me. Avocados provide all 18 essential amino acids necessary for the body to form a complete protein. Unlike the protein in steak, which is difficult for most people to digest, avocado protein is readily absorbed by the body, because avocados also contain fiber. If you are trying to cut down on animal sources of protein in your diet, or if you are a vegetarian or vegan seeking more protein, avocados are a great nutritional ally to include not merely as an occasional treat, but as a regular part of your diet. Highest protein content of any fruit (yes, it’s a fruit).
- I love to use you in my smoothies to add some creamy richness.
- I love to scramble you in my egg white omelet.
- I love that you help me with my ABCs. While avocados have a high caloric count (one avocado is 320 calories), the various nutrients and “healthy” fats make it a must-eat. They are an alphabet of vitamins. One avocado provides your body with vitamins A, C, E, K and B6, along with an enormous amount of potassium and “healthy” fat. Perhaps the biggest health benefit of avocados is that by adding avocado to certain foods, you can improve your absorption of nutrients. This means that when you combine other fat burning foods with avocado, you can improve your nutrient absorption up to 400%!
Oh, yes, I truly do love you.
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and sometimes it just doesn’t fit into our schedule the way it should. How we begin the day will determine how the rest of the day goes. It will determine if we feel energized or if we feel dragging with a lack of energy. What we put in our bellies is directly related to how we physically feel. So if you are a “skip breakfast and grab the coffee mug” morning person then this blog is totally for you.
We all need and crave energy. I know I do! Sometimes it is so easy to want to grab a quick bowl of cereal or even forget breakfast and just get through the morning on 1-2 cups of coffee for the energy needed to survive the day. I don’t want you to just survive through the day though; I want you to thrive through the day. I also don’t want you to go on the “crash and crave” roller coaster for the entire day. If you begin your morning with caffeinated coffee and sugar, you will crash, and you will be either too tired to make it through your responsibilities or you will be reaching for another cup of coffee to get through a few more hours.
Smoothies are another quick alternative to a fast breakfast that can help energize us throughout the entire day. When you toss in some greens, a little fruit, and a healthy liquid like coconut water you are bound to feel energetic and ready to take on the day. Starting the day with a smoothie also gives you well needed antioxidants which help protect our bodies from free radicals, and it is a great low glycemic start. Eating a low glycemic breakfast will help curb your sugar cravings for the entire day and it will also help with not crashing.
Next time you want a quick breakfast, try a delicious smoothie that will leave you feeling energized and motivated. A morning smoothie will provide your body with the nutrients it needs to produce natural energy and naturally boost your metabolism. So, what are you reaching for tomorrow morning? I know I will be pulling out my blender and getting ready for some long lasting energy.
I’d love for you to try one of my favorite smoothie recipes!