Thryoid Issues?

13686880_496401813891177_1558879806_n

Having suffered from thyroid issues myself, foods made all the difference in the world. Here’s a great thyroid boosting smoothie I must share.

For an under active thyroid, iodine is crucial. There are many delicious fruits that you can add to your smoothies that wake up those tired thyroids.

Cranberries are loaded with thyroid boosting iodine – plus has more vitamin C than oranges. The banana has some iodine but is filled with fiber that helps with any constipation associated with an under active thyroid. Pineapple is also loaded with iodine and tastes great up against flavors like cranberries. And last but not least there’s mango. Mango is not a major source of iodine but is loaded with vitamin E. This vitamin is crucial for thyroid dysfunction as it stimulates the thyroid. So as you can see, this recipe is a win win for our tired thyroids.

-1 cup fresh or frozen mango
-1 frozen or fresh banana
-1/2 cup cranberries (frozen is best)
-1/2 cup fresh or frozen pineapple
-1 teaspoon flax seeds (optional)
-1 1/2 cups water

Blend and enjoy:)

Buttercups!!

12446155_184114651957182_86290606_n

You’ve gotta try these peanut buttery knockoffs. So easy and fun for even some of your littlest chefs. All you need is 3 simple kitchen staples and some cupcake liners. How easy is that?! Best part is, they are just as gooey, sweet and chocolatey as a Reese’s but no artificial anything. That sounds like a guilt free sweet to me!

Recipe: makes 6 to 8 cups

-1 cup semisweet chocolate chips (you can use dark chocolate if desired, or vegan chips for dairy free)
-3 tablespoons melted coconut oil
-1/2 cup peanut butter (you can use any nut butter or sunflower seed butter for nut free)

Using a double boiler method, place a glass bowl over a smaller pot of boiling water. Try to not allow the boiling water to touch your glass bowl, this might burn your chocolate. You just want the steam to heat your glass bowl. Combine your 1 cup of semisweet chips and 2 tablespoons coconut oil over your double boiler and heat on low until nicely melted. Meanwhile in a separate bowl, combine the other 1 tablespoon melted coconut oil in your 1/2 cup peanut butter and stir until completely combined.

Place a spoon full of melted chocolate in a cupcake liner cup. I like to place the liners in a cupcake pan to avoid spillage or uneven cups. You don’t need much chocolate, just enough to coat the bottom of your liner. Place these in the freezer and within 2 min or so, they’ll freeze. Now add your peanut butter over your frozen first layer of chocolate. I use a good scoop, as I like more peanut butter than chocolate. Then just add another thin layer of your melted chocolate on top of your peanut butter. Place the cupcake tray back in the freezer for at least 10 minutes.
Serve your or should I say INDULGE these puppies straight out of the freezer. You’ll enjoy these down to the last bite!

Let’s do Lunch!

14271987_315506258816193_188224074_nSometimes as a mom you feel you need some type of nutritional background to make school lunches, or even Pinterest, we all need Pinterest, right?

My kids love sandwiches for their school lunch. If I allowed them, they’d eat a sandwich everyday of the week. However, deli meats and PB&J just aren’t ideal for keeping it clean, exciting and wholesome. So throughout the school year we compromised on the lunches and I was able to get my kids to try this chicken salad for a few of their lunches. My kids love it and I love that my son gets to eat his words in the process. You see, he “doesn’t like chicken,” and he “doesn’t like mayo,” but he LOVES this chicken salad. Go FIGURE. So kept it simple. This makes planing much easier for me, especially since my son eats like a bird. So it’s imperative I make ten bites of anything beneficial for him, because he’s “full” after bite eleven. This meal has just a handful of ingredients but loaded with great taste and benefits. I make this in bulk and store a few portions in the freezer for the next upcoming weeks.
Ingredients:

-Four chicken breasts (skinned & deboned)
-2 celery sticks & 2 pickles (optional) -3 Tablespoons mayo *check out my post on my homemade mayo (coming soon)
-2 teaspoons mustard -2 tablespoons sunflower seeds (this is where I add in the good fats).
– 1 teaspoon salt, pepper, paprika and celery seeds or celery salt.

Bake the chicken breast & season with salt and pepper at 350 for 30min or until cooked through completely. I like to add onion powder and garlic powder for extra flavor. While the chicken bakes, chop up celery and pickles. *you don’t need to add either, but it does add flavor,crunch and nutrients. You can even avoid the mayo and add hummus instead. I personally like it better but my kids prefer the mayo. Let the chicken cool and chop or shred in small pieces and add all your ingredients and mix. You can add the chicken to tortillas, whole grain bread, or even crackers. I like to add a few scoops over a bed of leafy greens and drizzle with olive oil and lemon juice. Enjoy!!

You scream, I scream….

 

13694760_891807914297406_1391819036_n

When the craving for ice cream hits, this is sure to satisfy! My “soul sister” as I call her, Reena shared this recipe with me and it’s now a family staple. And better yet, it’s vegan! Even with all the cooking and baking I do, I couldn’t believe how creamy, sweet and satisfying this refreshing bowl of goodness was. And the best part is that it’s clean, healthy, inexpensive and refreshing for these scorching hot days. Below is her basic recipe but you can get creative. Tart dried cherries and almond extract with slivered almonds, rum with raisins, and coconut shavings with candied pineapple, etc. are just to name a few😁

Ingredients:
3 ripe frozen cut-up bananas
3 Tbsp chocolate chips
2 Tbsp sunflower seed butter (or any nut butter)
1/2 tsp vanilla
pinch of sea salt

I always have frozen bananas on hand for smoothies, but if you don’t, make sure yours are frozen at least 8 hours or over night. I keep them peeled and cut into chunks before freezing them.
Place all ingredients into a food processor and process until smooth. The mixture at first will be ‘crumbly’ looking, but keep going. Once it’s smooth, scoop out like ice cream and serve immediately!! So good and you won’t miss the dairy, I promise!

Cupcakes are ‘healthy’??

13734248_1083389515081177_525754410_n

In my attempt to clean up the snacks and treats my kids were eating, I had to get creative. I was of the era when my kids were really little that foods labeled “healthy” or “all natural” meant they were safe and even beneficial. Boy was I wrong! Even “organic” isn’t the best choice anymore. You can eat something organic but it can be loaded with sugar.

So after again making another mistake, by ridding my kids from all treats/sweets  (when I finally learned what real food was) I realized that even though they may be physically healthier now, emotionally and mentally none of us were. It’s exhausting to keep up with every label, every possible contamination of gunk in anything they put in their mouth or even on their bodies, so this is why my 80/20 lifestyle was a must.

Nowadays I emphasize “clean eating” to my family and show them steps to improve what we eat. And by physically showing them how to create, plan and make these meals/snacks/drinks etc. they are more inclined to try it and take that knowledge with them when I’m not present. This doesn’t mean that they don’t reach for a handful of junk, but now they reach for a handful of junk AND handfuls of fruits AND veggies!

One of their favorites that they now can pretty much make on their own are these delicious, moist (sorry, I know many despise that word🙊), sweet but not too sweet, delicious muffins. My kids and all the kids I’ve made them for call them “cupcakes” but really they’re protein rich, potassium palate pleasers, without the artificial ingredients/food dyes, and sugary icings. So to call this a “cupcake” makes this mommy 😊

Recipe:

7 ingredients and less than 15 min to bake:

-1 ripe banana
-1 egg
-1/2 cup nut butter of choice
-3 tablespoons honey or maple syrup (honey works best)
-1 tablespoon vanilla extract
-1/4 teaspoon baking soda
-pinch of salt (I like Himalayan mineral salt)
-chocolate chips (if desired) (Njoy brand is Vegan)

Pre-heat oven to 400F.

Drop these items in a blender and blend. I would use your old fashioned blender if you have one. I’ve used my mega powered nutribullet and it turned into a shake :/. Once blended, just pour your mixture into a well greased mini muffin tin or use muffin wrappers. Sprinkle chocolate chips (use Vegan ones for dairy-free) on top and bake for 8 to 12 min and you’re done! Seriously so easy. No mixing bowls to wash just a blender and spoon is needed to prepare.

First pic is the peanut butter vanilla recipe, second pic is the banana cocoamuffins (just add 1/3 cup cocoa powder, almond butter, and I used almond extract instead). You can seriously make these anyway you want. Make two batches to fill up a muffin pan of 24 muffins. You can even freeze these and they thaw in about five minutes. Enjoy!