How To Accommodate Different Food Tastes And Needs – 7 Tips

7 Tips On How To Accommodate Different Food Tastes And Needs (1)— This blog post contains affiliate links ——

We are a miss-matched family when it comes to our eating habits. My daughter has an illness that gets aggravated by some food additives, and she is a Vegan. My son is a vegetarian, my husband a dedicated meat-eater, but who needs to watch his blood pressure, and I, well I am healing my thyroid naturally – that means no soy or soy products, and a long list of other foods, including some veggies, I should and will not eat. (I wrote more extensively on my allowed and disallowed food list here) Oh, and my dogs are allergic to commercial dog food, so I cook for them as well. Tired yet? I am.

Making meals that all of us can enjoy is a challenge. My over-the-road truck driving husband, is thankfully cooking mostly for himself, when he is driving, making food prep at least meat-free. That leaves us three people and the three animals. Thankfully the cat can (and will) eat whatever I put in front of him.

So what do we do to make it all work?

1. We meal plan. Once a week, my daughter and I create a meal plan for our entire week. We have some go-to recipes, but are always searching for something new, and are not afraid to look at foreign language websites to get inspired. Which also makes for a great homeschool lesson.

2. We look for or I create our own recipes that are easily adjusted (from vegan to vegetarian, or the other way around). I have shared some of these recipes on this blog, and will share some more on occasion.

3. We communicate. There is no shame in speaking up and saying that one of us did not like a meal or an idea. Suggestions on how to make a meal easier or better are always welcome and openly encouraged. We are a team here.

4. We have meals, where we share our space but not the same meal. Use today, as an example. All three of us had Mexican food. My son ate a bean taco, my daughter a tofu,carrot and cabbage quesadilla, and I ate a Mexican style zucchini wrap. It was relatively easy to adjust for our individual tastes, and most importantly we still had a complete meal as a family. (My husband is currently driving over-the-road, otherwise, he would have joined us with a traditional taco)

5. We are not afraid to try new things. None of us are afraid to try new recipes, flavors, and techniques. The kids are used to our trial and error system, and will speak up when something did not work for them.

6. We do not expect perfection. I am not a Five-Star chef, and I did not grow up cooking vegan or even vegetarian meals. Because of that alone,I do not expect that every meal will come out as planned. Letting go of creating that perfect meal, made my life a lot easier, and cooking a lot more stress-free.

7. We use meal prep containers. I have a collection of meal-prep containers in different sizes, some with sections, others without. Not only do they make it easy for me to make meals ahead, freeze, and then reheat in the microwave, but they also make wonderful containers to prepare healthy snacks for each of us. Mine often contains a boiled, egg, veggies, and maybe some cheese, while my daughters will be filled with some nuts, veggies and an individual container of hummus.

I will introduce you to one of my recently acquired containers in more detail in an upcoming review soon, meanwhile, you can check them out on Amazon – Spoiler alert: They have a tight seal, and are wonderfully stackable, I love them! 

Question: How do you plan your meals? Do you meal prep? I would love to hear from you! Just leave a comment below!

 

6 Raw Vegan Food Blogs You Should Check Out Right Now!

6 Raw Vegan Food Blogs You Should Check Out Right Now!

—- This blog post contains affiliate links, see disclosure page for details ——-

Happy Belated Earth Day!

Keeping  ourselves healthy, and taking care of the planet can be achieved  by being very selective about what we eat. I have written before about the reasons why raw vegan dishes are a great option for everyone, even if you are not going fully raw, or even fully vegan. During my search for recipes, I have come across quite a few wonderful blogs, 6 of which I want to share with you today. Enjoy!

Julie’s Raw Ambition – A beautiful blog, filled with recipes and some tips, like her recent post on gardening. Well written, and very informative.

Raw Loulou –  There are a lot of recipes to explore – and I mean a lot, from breakfast to snacks, you name it, you can find it here.

The Rawtarian – looking for more than just recipes, but a community who is willing to teach you how to explore this way of eating? Then the Rawtarian is right for you. There are beautifully photographed recipes of course, but there is so much more, so I would suggest that you make some time to dive into this great and large site.

Awesome To Be Rawesome –  confused by some of the ingredients that are asked for in vegan and or raw cooking? Check out Awesome To Be Rawesome for tips on how to use these ingredients to their fullest, and also join a community of people who are interested in the same. A great place to find advice and also wonderful recipes.

Raw On 10 – food and wellness – this beautiful site showcases how food can heal you, and that on a budget. What is not to love!

Sweetly Raw –  the site for raw vegan desserts. If you have a sweet-tooth, like I do, you really should check out this beautiful site. Imagine eating decadent sweets, that are actually good for you? Oh, yeah!

Feeling overwhelmed by all of the tools and gadgets you might need to make raw foods? Actually, you only need two to make most of the recipes you see on the above blogs. I highly recommend getting a high-speed blender (such as the Vitamix), and a good table top spiralizer.

Briefton 5 Blade Spiralizer Available on Amazon now!

While handheld spiralizers are fine for small jobs, I suggest getting a table top spiralizer. My favorite one is the Briefton 5 Blade spiralizer, which makes everything from curly fries (when not eating raw), to zucchini pasta (for those raw days). My favorite feature is how easy is is to clean – the entire thing is dishwasher safe, which is wonderful. It is quite big, once assembles ( the machine needs some assembling before your first use, but it is easy to put together – if I can do it, you can), but not big enough to be a nuisance. I would not want to be without it. But, as a parent I should warn you – this is not a kids toy – the blades are very sharp. Kids should be used to handling machines with sharp parts before using this spiralizer, and should be supervised.

(Disclosure: I have received the Briefton 5 Blade spiralizer for free in return for an honest and unbiased review).

 

5 Facts You Might Not Know About Bento Boxes

5 Facts You Might Not Know About Bento BoxesThe following post may contain affiliate links

Bento boxes are all of the rage, ranging from adorable boxes for children, to elaborate stackable wooden boxes,
with beautiful decor. Originating from Japan, they are a wonderful way to store and transport food wherever you go.

But how much do you really know about these traditional Japanese food boxes? I have collected 5 Bento facts you might not know, just for you:

I have collected 5 Bento facts you might not know, just for you:
1. Bento actually means convenience. And that is exactly what they are, a convenient way to take food with you, with
practical compartments keeping your food separate and clean.

2. In Japan you can be served Makunouchi Bento at a restaurant. These meals come arranged in elegant lacquered boxes, and are often very elegant.

3. There is such a thing as bento art. Featuring elaborate designs – cute, filled with humor, or just simply weird – Hongkiat
features a few of these well-designed bento art pieces. Check out the Starbucks bento box, which is my personal favorite

4. The difference between a bento box, and a lunch box is,…. well there is not any, because essentially a bento box is a
lunch box used in Japan. The biggest difference is probably, that a lunch box does not have to have separate compartments to be a lunch box, while a bento box usually has at least two compartments.
5. Great for eating healthy – bento boxes, because of their separate compartments allow for portion control. This is
especially great for those who are trying to reach their goal weight, or trying to ensure that they are consuming a balanced
meal. Use the largest compartments for veggies, and the smaller ones for proteins, starches, and even desserts.

My current favorite bento lunch boxes are these NimNik Kitchenette 3-Compartment Bento Boxes. Easily stackable, these three compartment boxes make it easy to transport a well-rounded lunch to the office, but are in my house mostly used for meal-prep. I like the prepare my healthy snacks and meals ahead of time, knowing that if I have the convenience of filled bento boxes at my fingertips, I am less likely to reach for an unhealthy snack. They are perfect for holding cold
lunches, such as sandwich and salad lunches, my favorite vegan wraps, or especially for a raw meal, like zucchini noodles with raw tomato sauce, with space left for some no-bake cookie balls, and fruit!. They come in a pack of ten, with a black bottom and a see-through plastic top, and are easy to clean. I love that the lid fits very tightly upon the box, making sure that there will be no mess, during transport. They are not of the thickest material, so I would not abuse them, as
it is possible with some other sturdier bento boxes, but I have had neither breakage or leakage issues with them, and we
have put them through the family test.

You can find the NimNik Kitchenette 3-Compartment Bento Boxes on Amazon right now!

 

Want to see how bento boxes can be used for a healthy, vegan meal prep? Check out one of my favorite YouTuber “Mind Over Munch” create Vegan Bento Boxes!

Disclaimer: I received the NimNik Bento boxes for free in return for an honest review

 

Wordless Wednesday: Wellness

Those who thinkthey have no time for healthy eating, will sooneror later have to make timefor illness.

 

This blog post is a part of the following blog hops:

Spring Digital Link Up

Wordless Wednesday (1)

Wordless Wednesday (2)

Wordless Wednesday by XMasDolly 

What Are You Doing In April – Blog Hop

Extra Veg – April Linky

Be Inspired 

Hypothyroidism: Which Foods To Eat, And Which To Stay Away From

Disclaimer: The following post contains affiliate links. Experiences and opinions are my own. See Discloser page for details

Hypothyroidism - Which Foods To Eatand What To Avoid

Hypothyroidism is often called the silent epidemic. Hard to diagnose, until the symptoms are in a stage you can no longer ignore, they can represent any number of other diseases. It took me to have a goiter (an enlargement of the thyroid, visible on the neck), to realize I had the disease. I had previously explained my increasing acne, hair loss, and sudden weight gain away, by a lack of discipline, and something that might just happen to me. The fact that I always am cold is just another quirk that made me, me. I was wrong. I had hypothyroidism.

Thankfully, once diagnosed there are a variety of treatment options you can discuss with your holistic health care provider. I have decided to go the natural route and began by adjusting my diet to support my thyroid. Allow me to share some of my findings with you.

Foods that negatively affect thyroid function (hypothyroid issues only) , and therefore, can increase or create a goiter are on my “not to eat list”

  1. pine nuts
  2. peanuts
  3. cauliflower
  4. broccoli
  5. kale
  6. millet
  7. spinach
  8. soybeans (and soy products)
  9. peaches
  10. pears
  11. rutabagas
  12. turnips

Those should be only eaten in moderation, and only if cooked, as some health care providers think that cooking them will kill their goitrogenic properties. I have eliminated them completely, which is personally the best course of action for me.

Foods to add to your diet:

  1. Eggs
  2. dairy
  3. shellfish
  4. seafood
  5. olive oil
  6. nuts (no peanuts)
  7. parsley
  8. whole grains
  9. whole wheat bread
  10. winter squash

You should also increase your consumption of foods containing the following vitamins and minerals

  1. zink
  2. B2
  3. B3
  4. B6
  5. B12
  6. A
  7. E
  8. C

Because fluoroid can have negative effects on the thyroid I cook only with filtered water. Keep in mind, that black and green teas also contain fluoride

So far, this course of action has had a positive impact on my overall well being, and I am able to stay off medication, as long as I make a continous improvement.

Question: Do you have a disease that you control or improve with the help of dietary changes?

Disclaimer as required by law: Please make sure you check with your health care professional before making any dietary changes. This article only contains a personal account for what works for me, and is for educational purposes only)

Read More On The Subject:.

.Available On Amazon Now!

The All-Day Energy Diet – A Book Review

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Title: The All-Day Energy Diet

Author: Yuri Elkaim

Publisher: Hay House

Publishing Date: September 29th 2014

Rating: 2/5 Stars

 

Another anti-gluten diet book that brings nothing new to the table, but is only regurgitating what many have written before – get rid of sugar and gluten in your diet and you will feel better. Just as with any of the fads that have existed in your lifetime regarding food and diet (Atkins Diet anyone?), this book jumps on what sells, and that is a pretend quick fix, rather than a fundamental personal assessment of one’s individual needs are which are only possible to be implemented with the assistance of professional guidance such as a holistic practitioner, a dietitian, or a doctor who is willing to put the time it takes to find out underlying causes for lack of energy. There are no quick fixes, and there are no one size fits all. Of course, one can try out many of these diets on their own, but that would only add to a stress level that is one of the many potential causes of low energy. It’s not the worst book on the subject, but it promises too much.

Book Review: The Low-Sugar Cookbook by Nicola Graimes

Book Review: The Low-Sugar Cookbook

Title: The Low-Sugar Cookbook
Author: Nicola Graimes
Publisher: Watkins Publishing Limited
Publishing Date: August 21, 2014
Rating 4.5/5 Stars

If you are buying this book for the recipes, you are in for a treat. Everything from sweet to savory is covered in this volume, bringing you healthy additions to your table, that are easy to prepare, and to not need ingredients most of us do not usually have in our pantry.

If you are expecting the revelation on how to live with less sugar, you are not going to find anything new. While the information given in the beginning of the book, on the health implications of too much sugar, are true, they are not more than the common person already knows. But this is mainly a cookbook, and in that regard, it has much to offer. From Muesli to Smoothies, light meals to full dinners ( I like the Ribollita, but that is because I love Italian food! – So comforting!) There are vegetarian meal ideas, and those for carnivores, some that take a little more skill, and others that anyone could master.

I am impressed by the variety of recipes, and would highly recommend this cookbook to anyone who wants to eat healthy, but not always the standard fair.

You May Also Like:

Viva Labs Organic Raw Cacao Nibs – Vegan, Natural, And Organic, my favorite nibs to use when creating treats for my hyper-allergic family members.

 

 

Disclaimer: This book was given to me by NetGalley in return for an honest review. The above post contained affiliate links to Amazon, see Disclosure page for full details