I finally finished The Hormone Diet by Natash Turner, ND and although it’s a crazy long book, it’s filled with tons of great material and is still accessible to a reader without a science or medical background (such as myself). I do recommend that you browse through the book, and look through the index for what interests you the most. This information does not need to be read in order for it to be valuable. Her book encourages a low glycemic mediterranean style diet, which actually pushed me toward eating a paleo diet as a way of reducing my intake of sugar.
Reducing sugar will prevent the release of excess insulin, which is a hormone that regulates the amount of glucose in the blood. Excess insulin has been linked to diabetes, heart disease, and even cancer. Reducing sugar will also help keep your liver healthy. Since the liver also controls the production and breakdown of different hormones including cortisol, an overburdened liver may cause hormonal problems. The liver also aids in detoxification, and toxins can cause hormonal imbalances as well. This book has tons of great advice and resources for detoxifying your home and work space.
Another thing I loved about this book, was her in-depth explanations of supplements and how it effects your different hormones. If you are considering taking a supplement to improve your hormonal health, I highly recommend you consult this book. Supplements are not regulated like prescriptions, and it’s important to get a quality product that is recommended by a doctor or naturopath. In her book, you can find both the brand names she recommends and the correct dosage.
In conclusion, I really liked this book as a comprehensive guide to understanding your hormones and how it relates to symptoms and disease. I was not a fan of the diet recommendations and recipes, but I did appreciate her explanations for avoiding sugar, alcohol, and caffeine. Check out The Hormone Diet by Natash Turner, ND if you are serious about your hormonal health. If your not serious, you should be. According to Turner, “Hormones are powerful chemcial messengers in the body, controlling everything from the reproductive system to mood, sleep, and appearance” They play an important role in metabolism and injury recovery, as well as many diseases related to aging including diabetes, osteoporosis, and heart disease. Excess estrogen (unnaturally found in our environment) has been linked to thyroid disease, obesity, and breast and prostate cancer. Just to name a few
I love cincinnati chili, and I love my slow cooker, so that makes this recipe doubly lovable. You can eat this just as a plain bowl of chili, or you could put it over spaghetti squash, sweet potatoes or white rice. All these options are considered safer starches and will help you feel nice and full. I actually ate this with japanese sweet potatoes last night, since that’s all they had at Whole Foods. We don’t have that much fall produce in LA yet. It’s crazy hot here right now and and the weather keeps geting hotter and hotter. I wanted to do a cold weather recipe anyway, since pinterest has me craving fall classics. So, I decided to blast the AC while my slow cooker was heating up my apartment. It kind of worked.
Anyway, I was really happy with way this recipe turned out. It made leftovers, which is always a good thing and it tasted delicious. Surprisingly, it wasn’t that spicy, so consider it a good base for a mild to medium chili, and add in extra cayenne pepper if you need to.
Slow Cooker Cincinnati Chili
- 2 lbs ground beef
- 2 white onions chopped
- 2 tbsp chili powder
- 1/2 tsp of all spice
- 2 tsp cumin
- 2 tbsp of cacao powder
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 2 tsp of paprika
- 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 3 cups of vegetable broth
- 16 oz jar of tomato sauce (I used Amy's Organic Marinara)
- 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
- (optional) 1/3 cup of scallions chopped
- Add all ingredients to slow cooker. Set it on high for 5 hours, or low for 7-8.
- (optional) garnish with chopped scallions.
Add more cayenne pepper to increase spicy flavor. It's currently a mild to medium chili.
You’ll think you’ve died and gone to Spain with this chorizo side dish. The olives and chimichurri dressing keep it light and fresh, while the chorizo makes this nice and spicy. I got the idea for this dish when I visited my family in New Jersey. There is an awesome restaurant called Fornos, in the Ironbound district, where there are tons of Spanish restaurants. It was an appetizer on the menu, but I ate it for dinner (with some gazpacho). Honestly, this dish is so versatile it would taste delicious hot or cold. So feel free to pack it up for a picnic or lunch and watch your friends and coworkers drool. It would also be great at a party with some toothpicks on the side. Who doesn’t appreciate some pastured pork with their olives?
If you can, find some locally sourced and pastured chorizo. I know it’s hard! My mom has a farmer who raises pastured pigs, so before I left New Jersey, we paid him a visit at the farmer’s market and stocked up on pig. If you follow along with this blog, you know I’ve done this before. And no I don’t ship it, but make my husband carry a bag of frozen meat through the airport. (To Shameer: thanks hun!!! Hope your dinner is worth it )
Chorizo with Chimichurri and Olives
- .75 lbs of chorizo (3 links)
- 3/4 cup of pitted green olives
- 1 tbsp of coconut oil
- 1 cup of firmly packed flat leaf parsley (I included the stems since I'm lazy)
- 2 tbsp of fresh oregano (no stems, not enough room in measuring spoon)
- 1/2 cup of extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tbsp of raw and fermented red wine vinegar (Eden Foods)
- 3 cloves of pressed garlic
- 1 tsp of sea salt
- 1/4 tsp of fresh ground black pepper
- 1/4 tsp of red pepper flakes
- Saute chorizo in a large pan with coconut oil, about 9-12 minutes or until skin is brown. Cut through to make sure inside isn't pink.
- Mix with olives on a dish, set aside.
- In a food processor, mix parsley, oregano, olive oil, red wine vinegar, sea salt, garlic, black pepper, and red pepper flakes.
- Drizzle chimichurri over chorizo and olives, and serve hot or cold.
Staying hydrated is an important part of any balanced and healthy lifestyle. However, it’s a simple one that is often neglected. I am particularly bad at keeping track of how much I drank, and how much more I need to drink to fill my daily quota. It can also be confusing about what beverages count towards these goals, and why these goals need to be met in the first place. Hopefully, this article will aide you on your health and wellness journey, and help you achieve your hydration goals.
First, it’s a good idea to set your hydration goals. According to the Hormone Diet by Natasha Turner, “To calculate how much water you need, multiply your body weight in pounds by .55. Divide the result by 8 to determine the number of cups you need to drink each day” (Turner 379). Sue Hitzmann, author of the MELT method is recommends you, “take your body weight in pounds and divide it in half to get the number of ounces you should drink” (Hitzmann 149).
Secondly, factor in beverages other than water. The Institute of Medicine (IOM) recommends roughly three liters of fluid for men, and 2.2 liters for women. Fluid being the key word. Coffee and tea can still count towards your goals. According to Web MD, the diuretic effect does not offset the hydration benefits. However, alcohol is very dehydrating and you should drink one glass of water for every glass of alcohol you consume. Fruit and vegetables also contain water, so include your smoothies and juices on this list of hydrating beverages. Soups and bone broth are also great sources of hydrating fluid and should be counted toward your daily total as well.
Lastly, here are some tips and tricks I’ve used in the past to meet my daily hydration goals. There is a free app called Water Your Body Lite, which helps you keep track of how much you’ve drank. JewelPie has a great DIY water bottle project that helps you keep track of how much water you should drink each hour. This is perfect if you want to drink consistently throughout the day. Or you could buy the Zing Anything Water Bottle which is BPA free, and has a filter on the bottom makes great flavored water at only $15. This is a great option for people who prefer sugar drinks over the taste of water. The Bobble Water Bottle is another great option that comes with it’s own water filter, so you can always have filtered water wherever you happen to refill your bottle. Hope these awesome tools, will help you drink more water! Now go achieve your hydration goals.
This breakfast chicken liver pate is for all my breakfast and bacon lovers out there. It’s especially great, for all the chicken liver newbies out, and for all my bacon loving paleo people. Trust me, bacon makes everything taste better, and if you’re not a fan of chicken liver, you should still give this a try.
My husband actually came up with this idea. Since my traditional chopped chicken liver, uses hard boiled eggs anyway. It was a really easy to add bacon to the recipe, to give it more wonderful breakfast flavors. Plus, I was able to caramelize the onions in leftover bacon fat, which means a ton of bacon flavor. Chicken liver is the mildest of the livers, but it can still be a strong, unpalatable flavor, especially for those who aren’t used to eating it. So, it’s best to cook it with strong flavors, otherwise the liver flavor will overpower the dish and turn off people to offal. Which would be a shame, since it’s such a powerhouse of nutrients.
Breakfast Chicken Liver Pate
- 1 package of bacon (8 oz)
- 1 large white onion
- 2 hard boiled eggs
- 1.36 lbs of chicken liver
- 1 tsp sea salt (or more to taste)
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 1 large cucumber
- (optional) garnish with 1 tbsp fresh chives
- Hard boil eggs set aside.
- Fry up bacon in large pan, set aside bacon and save fat in pan.
- Chop up white onion, and caramelize in bacon fat, then set aside.
- Leave leftover bacon fat in pan, and saute chicken livers 4 minutes per side or until inside is pink.
- Then, in food processor, blend up bacon and onions first so there are no chunky bacon bits. Then add chicken livers and blend until desired smoothness.
- Lastly, add hard boiled eggs, sea salt and black pepper and pulse food processor a few times.
- (Optional) Serve on sliced cucumbers, and garnish with chives.
This tropical soft serve ice cream was really easy to make in the Vitamix. It’s made without additional sweeteners or dairy. The frozen bananas give it a creamy texture, and the fresh ginger gives it a little bit of a spicy kick. My husband and I both love sweet and spicy flavors, so this was definitely a new favorite. We’ve been wanting to get an ice cream maker for awhile, but if you’re without one, like us, this is a crazy easy alternative.
Tropical Soft Serve Ice Cream
- 1 pineapple chopped
- 2 bananas chopped
- 1 tsp of fresh grated ginger
- Chop bananas into small half inch slices an freeze on cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Chop of fresh pineapple, freeze half of the pineapple on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper, and save the rest of the non-frozen pineapple.
- When fruit is frozen, add non-frozen pineapple to bottom of Vitamix, then put frozen fruit and fresh ginger on top for easier blending.
- Then blend as best you can, using the Vitamix plunger. If you still have some frozen fruit chunks, don't stress, it will still taste amazing.