Nutrition

Healthy Fats

blog healthy fats 2022Are you afraid to incorporate fats into your diet? Do you believe that eating fat will make you fat? If so, it's not your fault. You’ve likely been taught for years by the media that eating fat is going to make you fat, BUT this is simply not true!

The topic of fat can get very confusing, very quickly. But eating the right fats will make a HUGE impact on decreasing inflammation within your body. While eating fats is incredibly important, eating the RIGHT fats is the key!

 

We need HEALTHY fat

EVERY cell in our body contains fat. Healthy fats help us feel full, stabilize blood sugar, and maintain energy.

There are several essential fatty acids that our bodies cannot make, and if we don’t consume them it may show up as inflammation, fatigue, poor memory function, heart issues, depression, dry skin, as well as other unpleasant symptoms.

Our bodies also NEED fat to produce HORMONES. This is especially important for my fertility, pregnant, and postpartum patients! 

In addition, eating healthy fat (like olive oil) with your salad or veggies will actually allow your body to absorb more of the nutrients from the vegetables.

 

Healthy Fats vs. Unhealthy Fats

There is a BIG difference between good, natural, unprocessed, unrefined sources of fat and highly processed, refined fats.

Healthy fats should be incorporated into your diet every day. In some cases, it can be beneficial for these fats to make up well over HALF of the calories that a person consumes.

The processed and refined fats on the other hand, are considered “junk calories”. These unhealthy fats can be oxidized, or rancid, and are unrecognizable to our bodies. They contribute to inflammation which leads to all sorts of health problems. Examples of unhealthy fats include vegetable oil, corn oil, and trans fats.

 

Healthy Fats

These foods contain GOOD Fats. Enjoy eating these frequently without guilt!

  • Avocados
  • Olives
  • Ghee
  • Butter (I especially love Kerrygold)
  • Plain Yogurt (Full fat)
  • Avocado Oil
  • Coconut oil
  • Olive Oil
  • Nuts
  • Fish (salmon, herring, anchovies, and sardines)
  • Grass Fed Beef
  • Dark meat from free range poultry
  • Fats from animals (lard, beef tallow, duck fat, etc.)
  • Eggs (especially from pastured chickens)

*It is important that the meat you eat comes from animals that were healthy and got to eat their natural diets while they were alive.

 

If you are someone who doesn’t eat much fat, consider adding some healthy fats to your diet. Start with butter, avocado, olive oil, or something else from the “healthy” list above! 

If you still have some of the “unhealthy” fats in your diet, please consider switching these out with some of the healthier fats. Little changes, done consistently, can set you on a path to better health!

Dr. Jamie


 

Come Get Some Veggies

 

blog tower gardenYou know that eating veggies is important for your overall health! But sometimes it’s a hassle to run to the grocery store, clean the produce, and prepare a salad.

The tower garden has been the solution for me, and I want to share the great produce grown in my office with you!



Healthy Habits Made Easy

When you establish good habits, such as eating wholesome foods, it will have a direct impact on your health. The Tower Garden is encouraging me to continue my journey to good health by letting me grow fresh, nutrient-rich food without soil right in my office.

With fresh veggies growing year-round in my office, it only makes sense that I would enjoy them each day at work. When it is time to eat, I just snip a variety of lettuce and some herbs. 

With a little protein and some homemade dressing, I have a complete meal!



Other Benefits of the Tower Garden  

In addition to the easy nutritious vegetables it provides, the Tower Garden has many other benefits.

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Planning a Great Thanksgiving Feast

blog planning thankssgivingMany people wonder if it's possible to create a Thanksgiving menu with all real, unprocessed, nourishing foods. To that I respond with a resounding yes! It is absolutely possible to make a great meal using healthy whole foods. 

If you are unsure how to create your menu, here are several variations of the typical Thanksgiving fare that include only real food, unprocessed ingredients!

If you aren't quite ready to switch all your recipes over that's okay, start with one or two. I think once you see how tasty these recipes are, you will be inspired to try some more in following years.

You may be surprised that when you use these recipes you actually feel good after feasting, instead of the standard post thanksgiving lethargy. Enjoy!

 

The Bird:

Easy Roasted Turkey with Sage Butter

Butterflied Turkey Recipe (with tutorial)

Stuffing:

Sausage, Apple and Cranberry Stuffing

Paleo Comfort Foods - Stuffing

Green Bean Casserole:

Paleo Green Bean Casserole

Sweet Potato Casserole:

Sweet Potato Casserole

Roasted Garlic and Butternut Squash Mash

Cranberries:

3 Ingredient Cranberry Sauce

Other Sides:

Roasted Brussel Sprouts with Bacon

Beautiful Brussels Sprouts (with onion and squash)

Butternut Squash Risotto

Cauliflower "Mashed Potatoes"

Desserts:

Pumpkin Bars

Pumpkin Pie

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Lessons from Little House on the Prairie

blog little house on the prairieIf you’ve been around me awhile, you know how much I refer to our ancestors to decide what a natural way of living looks like. 

Long ago our ancestors lived off the land. They only ate what they could hunt, grow, or forage. Therefore, the foods they ate were whole foods either grown or caught in the wild. 

What would it look like for you to align your diet with what theirs may have been? Is there a way we could follow some of those principles in modern day life to get more nutrition? 

Let’s explore this issue and see if we can use their diets as a guide for ours!

 

Living off the Land

Long ago our ancestors lived off the land. The foods they ate were whole foods - grown or caught in the wild. Everything was natural with no sprays or pesticides. 

At the same time, food could be scarce and difficult to get. They had to work the land - growing, harvesting, or hunting each serving of food.

These ancestors didn’t need a ton of self control not to eat junk food, it simply wasn’t available!

 

Modern Diets

In contrast the Standard American Diet (SAD) is highly processed and composed of foods made in a factory. Some of the ingredients are even genetically modified. This type of diet is far from natural.

Much of the produce in the grocery stores were sprayed with pesticides and picked before they were ripe. And many of the animal products we consume were made from animals grown in an unhealthy environment.

And today our food supply - especially the unhealthy choices - tends to be abundant and easy to get.

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Infinite Salads

blog infinite saladsEating a variety of different plants is good for your body in so many ways, but sometimes it's hard to get enough. Adding variety to your diet can help prevent boredom and can encourage you to eat more veggies!

I know that my family has been stuck in a rut with our salads lately, so we started to spice it up a little bit. Instead of simply using mixed greens at the base of the salad, we have tried sliced red and green cabbage, grated beets, greens, swiss chard, kale, shredded carrots, microgreens, beet greens, cilantro, basil, mint, parsley, endive, and dandelion greens. (See the pictures below for some salads we've enjoyed recently.)

Let's explore the benefits of eating a variety of vegetables and see why the bright colored ones are so powerful.

 

The More the Merrier

Vegetables are loaded with great nutrients for your body. Let's look a just a few benefits of eating a lot of vegetables

  • Vegetables give the body high levels of phytonutrients & antioxidants. Our bodies need phytonutrients and antioxidants to deal with free radicals, preventing them from causing damage in the body. 
  • Vegetables are loaded with vitamins, minerals, and enzymes.
  • Vegetables provide the body with necessary fiber.
  • Vegetables provide the body with prebiotics which feed the good bacteria in your gut. Many people are aware that probiotics are important for gut health, but a recent study found that prebiotics are even more important. Since 70% of the immune system is believed to reside in the gut it is extremely important to keep our gut flora balanced by feeding the good bacteria. 

 

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Taking Charge of Your Blood Sugar

blog taking charge of your blood sugarGetting a good breakfast is a struggle for most people, but when you take a look at the research you will find just how important that first meal is. A solid breakfast will set you up for steady blood sugar and set you up to make good choices throughout the day!

Let’s take a quick look at the research and then talk about what you should be eating for breakfast and why.

A Bigger Breakfast

A research study divided women into 2 groups. Both groups were on a reduced calorie diet of about 1400 calories. The first group had 700 calories at breakfast, 500 at lunch, and 200 at dinner. The second ate 200 at breakfast, 500 at lunch, and 700 calorie at dinner time. 

The Big Breakfast Group 

  • Had greater reductions in fasting glucose
  • Had greater reductions in fasting insulin
  • Lost more weight 
  • Lost more inches at waist
  • Greater decreases in triglycerides
  • Had lower hunger scores 
  • Had higher satiety scores

This study was on overweight and obese women, but other research shows similar benefits.

 

Big Breakfast for Women with PCOS

Another study found that lean women with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) benefited from a high-calorie breakfast as well.

In lean women with PCOS, a high caloric intake at breakfast with reduced intake at dinner results in improved insulin sensitivity and reduced cytochrome P450c17α activity, which ameliorates hyperandrogenism (acne, hair growth in a male pattern, hair loss on the head) and improves ovulation rate.

These findings indicate that meal timing and distribution should be considered as a therapeutic option for women with PCOS.

 

What to eat for Breakfast

When preparing your big breakfast, it is really important to focus on protein, fat, fiber, and minimal (if any) carbs. This last part about the carbs, is especially important if you have PCOS, insulin resistance, or type 2 diabetes. An ideal breakfast will have about 25-30 grams of protein or a serving about the size of the palm of your hand. It will also have one serving of fat about the size of your thumb. The fiber would be your veggies! I am a big fan of getting a variety of vegetables in throughout the day starting at breakfast! If you do want some carbs, feel free to have some berries or non-starchy vegetables. (If you don't have a blood sugar issue, eating some starchy veggies or grains along with your protein and fat can work). 

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