The Fermentation Series, Part One: What’s the Dill, Pickle?

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As a child, that oversized barrel of dull, green, rubbery floating objects swimming in a tub of liquid ambrosia was always a source of marvel and excitement. The aroma that ascended when the barrel lid was lifted was enough to send me spinning. As it was positioned next to the deli counter, the mere thought of the long walk to the back of the store to get lunch meat brought forth feelings of joy (at the thought of fishing out my own), angst (Would I be allowed to have one?) and the sheer delight that only a kosher dill pickle could bring (Well, that and the Mr. Softee truck, the Italian Ice truck, the freezer in the corner store where the bomb pops lived…you get the point-it was important!).

Fast forward some um-hmm odd years and pickles are not really a thing for me anymore. Don’t get me wrong. I do enjoy them occasionally as accompaniment to a nice sandwich or as a necessary ingredient in a bomb macaroni salad, but aside from that, I rarely think of them.

What IS a thing for me, however, is good digestion and gut health! And fermented foods and beverages have been shown to be excellent for both. So in the interest of my childhood nostalgia and in my quest to add more fermented foods to my diet, eating pickles made the old-fashioned way is a no-brainer. Continue reading

Can chia seeds really do that?

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YASSSS DAHLING! They can, they can! Chia seeds are like that!

Once an 80’s fad used as window sill fillers, paper weights and conversation starters, these little powerhouses have burst on the scene and gone straight to the top of the superfoods lists! The nutritional value of chia seeds (also known to me as the chias) has been well documented, some may even say ad-nauseum. Still, I manage to consistently run into that percentage of the population that remains unaware and even shocked when they hear me talk about the chias as if they were common knowledge.

My bad! I have been known to get caught up in my health bubble at times. So in an effort to acquaint you all with my bffs, I’ll share a little info about them and how I use them to stay healthy. Continue reading

Ain’t nobody got time to be sick! A delicious recipe for naturally healing from a cold.

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Naturally healing and preventing illness with whole foods is not as complicated as we would like to make it. (Think “Bubble, bubble, toil and trouble…” That poor lady probably wasn’t a witch at all, just someone trying to make a soup to get over a ’bout of the flu!) It does not always require complicated potions and tinctures,using obscure ingredients like eye of newt or ground up lizard toes. In fact, it can be as simple as eating a delicious salad that you never knew could be medicinal!

Since changing my eating habits to mostly whole foods and increasing my green veg intake, getting sick has become a thing of the past. I have been around people with colds, the flu and all kinds of nasty bugs without being affected, which aside from my diet, I largely attribute to my homemade Fire Cider.

That being said, my current situation is such that I am under the weather, operating at about 70% with tissue boxes and throat lozenges in every room of my house and the car. Oh, did I mention that my voice sounds like I swallowed a foghorn?! No Bueno!!!! Continue reading

Let them have Kale Chips!

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A few years ago when I first heard of kale chips, I was underwhelmed to say the least. In fact, I was confused. I thought, “Why would a leafy green vegetable best known for being steamed, braised or dressed in a salad with other vegetables try to masquerade as something crunchy, delicious and snack worthy? Is it Halloween? Mardi Gras? Oh, must be Dia de los Muertos!” I didn’t get it. Fast forward to the present day where I am now Queen of the Kale Chips! (Yes, it’s a self-appointed title, but trust me on this one.) These crunchy gems are full of fiber which fills me up and does what a snack is supposed to – fuels me with energy and nutrients until my next meal. I won’t lie, at times they have become my meal because they are just that good! For more of my kale chip recipes, see my post on the FitLife.tv blog HERE.

Try them out and let me know what you think in the comments below. Feel free to also add your vote for me to be Queen of the Kale Chips. If you do, I promise to reign with love and to come up with more awesome kale chip recipes for us to live out our days in health and happiness.

As always, THRIVE in Livity!

Angela Continue reading

Jammin’ on the one!

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Since my childhood, I’ve had a non-committal relationship with jam. I always preferred the smooth transparency and easy spreadability of jelly. Jam, with it’s chunky, nebulous, spread-resistant constitution, placed a very distant second to my beloved jelly. As an adult, my tolerance for jam had significantly increased as my aversion to chunky textures disappeared. Until recently, what stood between us was that most store-bought jams have way too much sugar and even if I wanted to make my own, I had no more space for equipment, storage or unitasking ingredients like pectin. So I just went without. And then it happened. A friend of mine shared a recipe for a pectin-free, sugar-free Refrigerator Jam.

Shut yo mouth!” you say.
Right?! I would, but then you wouldn’t get the recipe. Back to the story.

Once my head stopped spinning like the wheels of a slot machine and I realized that everything I had ever known to be true, wasn’t… OK. Well, more like everything I had known about jam wasn’t true. Anyway, once I realized that, I was able to make my own loose interpretation with stuff I already had on hand. And it was da bomb! Continue reading