QUESTION: Hi Linda, I just discovered a bowl of almonds I was sprouting on my counter has mold on them. I soaked them starting Friday night, drained them Saturday night and put a towel over them until tonight (Sunday night) to put them in the dehydrator but they are moldy! Should I throw them out? What did I do wrong? Thanks, P. +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ ANSWER: Hi there P.! You should soak almonds for about 8 hours, drain/rinse and then fill up with water again and stick in your fridge until you are ready to use them - they'll last 5 days this way but you'll want to drain/rinse/fill with fresh water each day. When you are ready to use the almonds, you'll want to drain/rinse the almonds one last time. OR you could soak them for 8 hours and then rinse, then put them in a bag in your freezer until you are ready to use. It's not as ideal but it's a great way to have soaked nuts ready for use whenever you are ready to use them! It sounds like the conditions were right to start some bacteria to grow on them. I wouldn't use them, I'm sorry to say and that's a bummer. Sounds like you have a warm kitchen! :-) Take care and hope that helps, Linda +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Ask Linda! Please feel free to submit your questions to linda AT vt-fiddle.com. Questions don’t have to be completely raw food related but please bring questions on health, recipes, diet, weight issues, nutrition, parenting, nursing, pregnancy, spirituality or whatever it is you’d like to ask. I’ll do my best to answer and will most certainly learn from this as much as I can give.
Question: what vitamix model should I buy? — S. Answer: Thanks for your question! I want to start by saying that I've been using my VitaMix blender since 2001 and I still have the same one I bought back then. It works great. I've been using the 4500 from day one and thought for sure that this would be the only model for me. It has an on/off switch and a high/low switch. It's a powerful blender and it blends everything like a dream. You just turn the machine on and its 2+ horse power blends anything and everything super fast and creamy. I haven't had any problems grinding grains/nuts/seeds with it, nor with making juices, smoothies, soups, pates, spreads, ice creams, puddings, and everything else in between. For me, the 4500 was going to be my one and only blender that I was going to carry. VitaMix Turboblend VS, the one with the variable speed. I received this as a gift for submitting some of my recipes to VitaMix for their new recipe book. I received the blender in December so it's a new experience for me to use the variable speed. Because of that, I'd say it was a little difficult for me to get used to in the beginning. I think because I was so used to the 4500, I saw the variable speed initially as adding another step to the process and I wasn't quite "getting" the real use for it. Now that's it's been a coupla months since using the variable speed, I can say honestly that I do enjoy using it daily. I think it does an even better job of grinding nuts/seeds/grains. I think it makes quicker work of making creamy dips and spreads. It's less messy (and therefore easier/faster to clean) to use the VS when blending smoothies because the ingredients don't go shooting up to the top of the lid like in the 4500. I also think that it means not needing to use the tamper tool as much. So, I now love both the 4500 and the VS. I have never tried the 5200 but just from looking at it and reading it, it says that people should use the 5200 if they DON'T plan to grind their own grains. (Why on earth would you not grind your own grains?!?!) :-) There's also a grippy black handle vs. the other blenders that just have regular plastic handles. I'm sure it's a great blender, but I DO enjoy having the versatility of grinding my own nuts/seeds/grains as well as making ice creams and soups, smoothies, juices, creams, dressings, pates, spreads, etc. So my recommendations would be to save your pennies and get yourself a VitaMix - it doesn't really matter which one as you'll love it as soon as you blend your first smoothie in it. Get the 4500 if you want the base model (which is a really kickass model) - you'll save about $50 between the 4500 and the next model up. The VS and 5200 cost $449.00 and it's definitely has it's perks to using that variable speed. I don't want to discourage anyone from trying it at all. I love both models now and I think it's just a matter of preference. Make up your mind based on your budget and needs. I will end by saying that for $50 additional (for the VS), you'll not only get the blender with the variable speed, but you'll receive one of our hemp 12 x 12 nut milk bags AND the amazing recipe BINDER that has really awesome recipes in it. (All raw vegan recipes) - I really think that's special. So many people ask me what to do and how to get started and this really is a great kit to get you started on eating more health-fully. email me back and tell me what you end up getting. xoxo, Linda +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Ask Linda! Please feel free to submit your questions to linda AT vt-fiddle.com. Questions don’t have to be completely raw food related but please bring questions on health, recipes, diet, weight issues, nutrition, parenting, nursing, pregnancy, spirituality or whatever it is you’d like to ask. I’ll do my best to answer and will most certainly learn from this as much as I can give.
QUESTION: Linda, Can u tell me if it is ok to use the kefired soaking water from soaking seeds and grains and such? Do I keep reusing it adding fresh water each time or do I toss it with each batch? Thank you so much! I am looking into takin one of your workshops to get a better sense of all this sprouting ;) Warmly, T ANSWER: Hi there! To be honest, I’m very knew to the kefir world. I’ve just made my first batch of coconut kefir water and fermented coconut meat pudding. I don’t use dairy products so I’m not going to make any kefir creams. Kefir is a culture that is added to water and sometimes sugar/honey is mixed in to feed the kefir culture. Here is a link for kefir: http://www.bodyecology.com/kefirinstructions.php If you are soaking grains for making rejuvelac, it is the fermented water that you use for making your cheeses or soups or smoothies. You sprout the grains for a few days and filter out the grains (remembering to catch the fermented water in a bowl) then add fresh water to the grains to make a second batch of rejuvelac. Let the water stand for a couple days to ferment and then use that soak water as the rejuvelac liquid. You can get a coupla batches from the grains. Here is a link for rejuvelac: http://www.ehow.com/how_2320602_make-rejuvelac.html - My friend Natasha has some good rejuvelac instructions in her book SimplyRaw Living Foods Detox Manual. You can pop in anytime and check it out. Typically though, as far as regular hydroponic sprouting is concerned, you always want to rinse grains/seeds/beans and not reuse the soak water. The only time I’ve ever used soak water is when I soak raisins or dates or sun dried tomatoes. But not for sprouts (unless it is rejuvelac!) If you are just sprouting grains or seeds to have them to eat, you would always rinse out the water and not keep them in the water for sprouting. We have a link on how to easily sprout with our nut milk bags: http://www.vt-fiddle.com/rawfood/how_to_sprout_using_nut_milk_bag.php#sprout - the idea is to keep the water away from the sprouts so that they can grow their little tails. You want to rinse the sprouts so that they will be kept clean. The rinse water goes down the drain for this type of sprouting. Hope that helps! Happy sprouting! Linda +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Ask Linda! Please feel free to submit your questions to linda AT vt-fiddle.com. Questions don’t have to be completely raw food related but please bring questions on health, recipes, diet, weight issues, nutrition, parenting, nursing, pregnancy, spirituality or whatever it is you’d like to ask. I’ll do my best to answer and will most certainly learn from this as much as I can give.
Linda, I just purchased a Champion Juicer but I'm considering sending it back. WHY? Because I've been making amazing juices with the Vitamix. I basically throw the ingredients in the Vitamix, whirl well and then strain through one of the nut milk bags I got at your place. It works really well and I can't see it being any easier than that!! It's quick easy and no cleanup! Help...your thoughts please.....I've been drinking 1-2 juices a day..and I don't mind straining in the nut milk bag. Plus I add a little water when whirling in vitamix so that adds a little extra to the juice. With the juicer, I will be adding no water thus NOT getting as much juice....................what do ya think??! ------C
Hi there C,
Yep, I agree with you on the Vitamix/nut milk bag juicing technique. It works very well. The champion was a lot of clean up for me so I sold mine. If you are doing a great job with the blending/straining, I'd say send back the Champion and keep doing what you are doing. The Champion was my second juicer and it does a great job with root veggies and some fruits but doesn't do well with greens. In the beginning of my juicing days, I wasn't juicing greens so I didn't have a need for them. I used to use it to make some kick ass nut butters but now use the food processor for them because it's a lot less to clean up. I think the blending/straining works really well because it really gets the greens masticated and so uses more of the greens. A lot of the time in my juicer that I use now, I find whole pieces of greens in the compost bucket. I think it also seems to use less veggies to get a decent amount of liquid and the nut milk bags strain soooo well. A lot of people who use juicers will use our bags for straining, too because it gets all the fiber out where juicers leave some in.
Of course I want to say that these are just my opinions. I don't want to yuck anyone's yum here, not any juicing company or people that love their juicers. I want to say that because I think it's important to acknowledge we all have different taste preferences and I'm just sharing mine.
Thanks for the great question and keep up the great work!
xoxo,Linda to read more, please go here. +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Ask Linda! Please feel free to submit your questions to linda AT vt-fiddle.com. Questions don’t have to be completely raw food related but please bring questions on health, recipes, diet, weight issues, nutrition, parenting, nursing, pregnancy, spirituality or whatever it is you’d like to ask. I’ll do my best to answer and will most certainly learn from this as much as I can give.
This week's question: Would you be willing to share your fav greens smoothie recipe? I'm trying to do better :) —M This week's answer: Hello there M! First here's a basic green smoothie recipe is: (serving one) a good couple handfuls of greens (lettuce, kale, chard, spinach, edible weeds in the summer, green sprouts, etc - stay away from the more bitter greens for green smoothies like arugula as they dominate the flavor.) so it would be about 1 cup packed or 2 loose cups. 1/2 cup of fresh or frozen berries (can substitute with pears, peaches, apples, oranges, pineapple, mango or any fruit you like) - feel free to add more if you want. 1 banana 1 1/2 cups water Blend up and drink. This is the basic green smoothie and can be added to and varied. To make it my favorite (and particularly as it gets colder out), I like adding a heaping TBSP green powder like Vitamineral Green to get a whole lot of green nutrition added. I'll sometimes add a TBSP maca. I'll typically add some coconut oil to mine, some vegan protein powder during colder months, hemp or nut milk instead of water sometimes to make it really creamy. Sometimes I'll add a sweetener if the fruit isn't sweet enough (particularly when kids and husbands are sharing with me. Sometimes we can tolerate new things better when they are sweet. So that would be a tsp of agave or honey or maybe a date or two.) Also, I add some chia for those lovely omegas! And last but not least, every couple/few days, I'll add a little sprinkle of cacao nibs to the smoothie too. But that's the basics. They are yummy! Also good to note that lettuces like romaine won't turn the smoothie totally green so it is a good "starter" smoothie for people who get weird about the color. Also note: REMEMBER TO CHEW YOUR SMOOTHIES! (Chew your drink and drink your food!) Have fun! I also just have to say that my favorite smoothie is the one that I'm drinking! They all taste great. This morning's smoothie had: banana, local org blueberries, local greens, Vitamineral Green, coconut oil, chia and some medicinal mushrooms like reishi. OH and I put in a bit of sunflower seed butter this morning because I was hungry!! I drink about 32 ounces of green smoothie throughout the morning. Take care, Linda +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Ask Linda! Please feel free to submit your questions to linda AT vt-fiddle.com. Questions don’t have to be completely raw food related but please bring questions on health, recipes, diet, weight issues, nutrition, parenting, nursing, pregnancy, spirituality or whatever it is you’d like to ask. I’ll do my best to answer and will most certainly learn from this as much as I can give.
Question: Where can I find Stacy's Happy Shake ingredients? Answer: Great question! I've put together a lil page on my website with Stacy's recipe plus ingredient listing so you have one stop shopping. Here's the link: http://vt-fiddle.com/shop/index.php?main_page=index&cPath=56_74 If you are familiar with Stacy Stower's happy shake, then you've come to the right place. Here we have her recipe laid out and if you scroll down below, you can order the ingredients right here on the same page. The Happy Shake - serves 1 by Stacy Stowers 1. The BASE: 3-4 cups fresh spinach.....GREEN is Glorious! 1/2 cup liquid.....water, juice, nut milk. it's your choice... 1Tbsp coconut oil...good fat won't make you fat! This is essential for a healthy happy body, keeping you satisfied and metabolizing the spinach. 1Tbsp Hemp Seed....protein! This can be sprinkled in after blending if you prefer. 3 drops Marine Phytoplankton 2. The "HAPPY" Part: 1/2-1Tbsp Maca....for stamina, endurance, mental clarity and peak sexual performance for both men and women 1Tbsp Raw Cacao (Raw Chocolate)...in it's Raw state chocolate is actually a valuable potent super-food loaded with nutrients and neuro-peptides very similar to the ones our bodies create when we are in LOVE! 1Tbsp a super GREEN RAW powder....GREEN is highly alkalizing. This is crucial! Very important for weight management and longevity! 1 Tbsp bee pollen (can be sprinkled on top at the end.) I package and bring the "Happy" part on the road with me for my families. You can also get your super foods from my super friend Linda Wooliever at vt-fiddle.com. Meet Linda right here on Face Book!!! 3. Add your favorite frozen fruit......bananas, berries, mango, papaya. 4. BLEND!!!!!......this is the"sludge" Now go out and have the Best DAY Ever!!!! +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Ask Linda! Please feel free to submit your questions to linda AT vt-fiddle.com. Questions don’t have to be completely raw food related but please bring questions on health, recipes, diet, weight issues, nutrition, parenting, nursing, pregnancy, spirituality or whatever it is you’d like to ask. I’ll do my best to answer and will most certainly learn from this as much as I can give.
this week's question is great: What do you think - if coconut oil is stable at high heat, why does it matter about buying truly raw versus a brand like Nutiva Organic cold-pressed (which is the one i've been buying)? Just wanted to get your opinion. :) Thanks. —V. Answer: This is such a thought-provoking question to me! The first thing that comes to my mind is this method of how the oil gets extracted and how it gets checked for temperature. It's always really unclear to me how any product can be labeled as truly "raw" because there are so many variables (the sun, traveling in hot trucks, sitting in hot warehouses, to name a few.) But I do know that all food has glorious flavors and textures to it. When I have food that is cooked, I feel different then when it is raw. Whether I choose to cook or not, I want to be sure that my food comes to me in the most minimally processed way. Again, that's hard to do when things are being shipped from all over the globe and I can do my part by growing my own, buying local and buying raw because that at least tells me I'm trying to receive minimally processed good foods. Then I can chose how I'm going to adulterate or process my food however I want! LOL I am also not a "purist" in the matter of being totally 100% raw (I found that I got myself into a tizzy about everything needing to be PURE and RAW and for me, it was more healthy to stop being such a policeman (for lack of a better word) about it; I do believe that we make the best choices for ourselves that fit our taste and budgets. I've purchased the same Nutiva coconut products as you have, and I have enjoyed it very much. I sell a centrifugal, raw, cold pressed coconut oil that comes to me from Ultimate Superfoods and I also enjoy that coconut very much. I've tried many coconut oils and some I like more than others. I've had a lot of coconut oils turn rancid on me from big raw people out there and I buy the stuff from Ultimate purely because they supply me with a lot of things lately, so it's a matter of convenience. I do like the taste and feel of their coconut oil, though. I wanted to touch briefly on this tip I learned about coconut oil being a great oil particularly if you are going to cook with it. There's links below where you can find more information, but to sum it up, coconut oil doesn't turn carcinogenic when you are cooking with it so you would be wise to change your cooking oils to a really nice coconut oil. I had read that if you wanted to use olive oil, the best way to "cook" with it would be to steam cook whatever you wanted to normally cook with olive oil, remove it from the heat and then add the olive oil. That way the olive oil wouldn't start to smoke and possibly turn your meal into something less than healthful for you. http://helpguide.org/life/healthy_diet_cancer_prevention.htm - here's link that talks a bit about the oil/cooking/carcinogens but you have to scroll down to near the bottom to read about it. http://www.organicfacts.net/organic-oils/organic-coconut-oil/health-benefits-of-coconut-oil.html - this is link on the health benefits of coconut oil. http://products.mercola.com/coconut-oil/ - recommends only using coconut oil to cook with http://rawcoconutoil.org/ - another good article on coconut oil and this one goes into a bit on the matter of whether or not coconut oil can really be called "VIRGIN" or not. Also goes into heating of coconut oil. http://www.tiana-coconut.com/expeller_pressed_coconut_oil.htm - this goes into expeller pressing vs. centrifugal pressing, etc. But still, the question is about what's the point about buying a raw cold pressed oil if you are just going to cook with it and it remains stable in high heat anyway? I think it has to do with how the oils are extracted. I've been reading on it and it looks like there are many ways to extract the oil and organic and cold pressed or lower temperatures seem to win out, in my opinion, on how healthful the product is. For example, I didn't even realize that hexane could/would be used to extract oil! http://www.pccnaturalmarkets.com/guides/tips_cooking_oils.html - a very interesting link on all the ways that oils are extracted. (This is where I learned about hexane and other chemicals used to extract oils... EEK!) So, in my opinion, I would feel very happy using the Nutiva organic coconut oil that you are using. You can be relatively sure that the oil was expressed in a "humane" way! LOL (That's so funny! We should call "conventionally" grown/prepared foods as "inhumane!") I'm also quite happy using my Ulimate Superfoods coconut oil and a few others that I've liked as well. I would recommend to always check out the label to see what is in one's food and GET IN THE HABIT of asking the manufacturers what they use and how they make their products. Our bodies are our temples, after all! I hope this answers your question and thank you for getting my lil thinking cap on! Many blessings, Linda +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Ask Linda! Please feel free to submit your questions to linda AT vt-fiddle.com. Questions don’t have to be completely raw food related but please bring questions on health, recipes, diet, weight issues, nutrition, parenting, nursing, pregnancy, spirituality or whatever it is you’d like to ask. I’ll do my best to answer and will most certainly learn from this as much as I can give.
This week’s question came to me just a day or two ago (and then today). I love the nut milk/filtering bag questions! This is a two-parter - please keep your eyes peeled! QUESTION: I cannot afford a VitaMix machine right now, and only have a food processor with blender attachment. Will this be enough to make decent quality nut milk? I know it wont be of a VitaMix quality, but am hoping for something decent...Thank you very much!!! —T ANSWER: Dear T: Yes, use whatever you have. You might have to blend a little longer with the blender/food processor that you have but it will make a kick arse milk! Try it and see for yourself! Please let me know how it goes for you. QUESTION AGAIN: Thank you so very much for responding so quickly. I really appreciate this a lot!! I do, however, have 2 additional questions for you. This is my first undertaking with making nut milk and am VERY excited about all that this will bring to my healthy lifestyle. Which Hemp nut milk bag would be the best for me, the angled one or the regular one? I am looking at probably the 9x12 size. Also, can nut milk pulp be frozen for later use? I really appreciate your help and am again very excited about finding your site. Thank you and have a wonderful day:-) —T ANSWER: Hi again T! I think you'll get more bang out of your buck by using the 9 x 12 rectangle. The v-shape is great to use. I'm thinking, though, that with more surface area of the rectangle, you'll be able to use the hemp bag for sprouting and other filtering uses. And YES! you can totally freeze the pulp to use for future recipes! Hope that helps and have fun nut milk making! Remember, here's the link for how to use the nut milk bags including recipes for pulp and other goodies! http://www.vt-fiddle.com/rawfood/how_to_make_nut_milk.php Take care and happy unturkey day! :-) Linda +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Ask Linda! Please feel free to submit your questions to linda AT vt-fiddle.com. Questions don’t have to be completely raw food related but please bring questions on health, recipes, diet, weight issues, nutrition, parenting, nursing, pregnancy, spirituality or whatever it is you’d like to ask. I’ll do my best to answer and will most certainly learn from this as much as I can give.
This week’s question came to me a couple week’s ago. This one is really fun and sweet. QUESTION: Hi! I love your Onion Bread. What's in it? (A few www searches showed flax, sesame and onion, but there must be more than that!) Thanks so much! — K.M. ANSWER: Dear K. M. Thank you so much for your kind words and I'm happy to hear you are enjoying my onion bread! My onion bread actually doesn't have sesame seeds in there! I use flax, sunflower seeds, olive oil, liquid aminos and onions. That's it - unbelievable, isn't it? So very flavorful! I don't use a lot of olive oil or liquid aminos which is different than other onion bread recipes out there (and I think that's what makes it taste so good!) If you make your own, have fun and let me know how it comes out! Take good care, Linda +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Ask Linda! Please feel free to submit your questions to linda AT vt-fiddle.com. Questions don’t have to be completely raw food related but please bring questions on health, recipes, diet, weight issues, nutrition, parenting, nursing, pregnancy, spirituality or whatever it is you’d like to ask. I’ll do my best to answer and will most certainly learn from this as much as I can give.
This week's question came to me a couple week's ago. I submitted it to the RNEC newsletter but will post it here as it is a good question! Here goes: QUESTION: I got a question for "Ask Linda"....one of my families coming up has a 2 1/2 year old daughter with chronic constipation....what suggestions can I give this family? Anything I should add in or avoid when playing in thier kitchen? love Stacy ANSWER: Dear Stacy, Thank you so much for your email and your great questions. First thing I would want to know is how do they define chronic constipation. Is she going to the bathroom at all? Once a week? Once a month? Also, how long has this been occurring? I would want to know what she has been eating over the course of time that she has been experiencing this constipation. Is she having dairy? Does she have any allergies or sensitivities to foods that are clogging up her system? Does the child have any aches or pains? Has the doctor ruled out anything and everything that might be a health concern? How much does the young one eat each day? Does she have any good fats? Does she eat good fruits and greens? How much fiber is she eating? Is she eating food from scratch or highly processed foods? Is she eating meat? If so, how much per week is she eating? Does she exercise and move a lot (is she an active child?) Does she get outside in the sunshine a lot per week? Suggestions for the family would be: • Aside from the answering the above questions, the first obvious suggestion would be for the family to have her checked out routinely by way of physicals. She can visit a naturopath (ND) or MD but it's always good to get a baseline of health. I'm assuming that this has been done and she is healthy overall. • Have the parents keep a food diary for her to see what she is eating and see if there is any connection to constipation. Food diaries can help them see if they notice constipation related to food that she eats. Let's say she has pasta for dinner and is constipated the next morning. If they see a correlation over some time noticing that pasta = constipation, then they can experiment by trying a gluten free pasta to see if that makes things different (or eliminating it altogether). The parents can keep track of her bowel movement frequencies and times, too, in the diary. Most parents seem to know their kids' habits already but it might be helpful write it down and keep an eye on things for a month or so. They can also get books on allergy elimination diets and can do their own version of one (i.e. taking all known allergens out of the diet for a month like dairy, soy, corn, wheat and then putting them back in SLOWLY and one at a time over the course of several months to see if the body reacts to each possible allergen. It can seem time consuming, but easier to do with kids so they don't have to go through allergy testing by way of needles.) • Have the daughter drinks lots of water each day. I've read that young kids can drink about 1 1/2 oz per body weight each day. So if this toddler weighs 30 lbs, she could drink 45 oz per day. I would probably recommend starting with 32 oz and gradually working her way up (that is assuming she's not drinking lots of water.) Just present the child with a sippy cup full of water and remind her to drink it. Bring it with her for car rides and friends houses, etc. She'll get in the habit of drinking regularly. Stop giving the child cow's milk or juices, particularly juices that are from bottles in the grocery store. Juices from the grocery store don't provide any nutrients (even the health food store - it's a better choice but not worth the money) and milk can be avoided without worry of the child's calcium intake. If the parents want to give the child something to drink other then water, make it a FRESH juice they make themselves, nut or seed milks, or a smoothie of some kind. But water should be the staple drink for the child (and everyone) throughout the day. • Does the child have any fears or "holding on" that might be affecting her bowel movements? I don't know how long this child has been out of diapers (or if she is out of diapers) but I do know that sometimes with some kids, they can go through something during potty training - it's almost like they are trying to let you know that they aren't really ready to become "big kids" even when they say they are ready or they have shown that they were in the recent past. It's as if they were doing great sitting on the potty and then they go through a kind of regression where they actually stop themselves from going for whatever reason. If this is the case, know that this too shall pass. The child would do well to have some gentleness and appreciation from the parents for when they do go on the potty and over a short time, they will naturally move to using the potty very regularly on their own. If the parents show outward worry or tension when the child is stopping themselves from going to the bathroom, sometimes it can slow down the process and it will be no fun for everyone for a while. It's a wild thing, but if it helps, suggest to the the parents to see this as the child trying to learn their own autonomy and independence even though it can feel rather frustrating for the parent. This too shall pass. It really will. • Whatever food practices the parents decide to do for the child are more easily assimilated when the parents adjust their diets too. Keeping dairy out of the child's diet while the parents are scoffing down pizza (for example) isn't going to be easy to manage in the long run. Best for the parents to adopt these changes too. Keep in mind that when doing allergy elimination type diets to see if there is a food allergy or sensitivity is only temporary. If there is no allergy to dairy or wheat, for example, then the changes made are purely experimental with an "end sight" nearby. (Often the thought of cutting out a food FOREVER is too foreboding, so think about it being temporary. If there really is a food allergy, chances are great that when they reintroduce the food, they or the child will feel so yucky that eliminating it will have many more positive feedbacks vs. keeping it in... Plus there are so many yummy alternatives now that taste and feel way better than the originals...) RE: adding in or avoiding when playing in their kitchen It's always a challenge to fully answer a question when so many details are missing. I do think that when you are there with them, you can make as many fruit puddings and green smoothies for this toddler and that will be great for her in so many ways, not just intestinal. I would recommend limiting the amount of stimulants (like cacao, honey, agave) to this child. It might help at first with bowel movements but isn't necessary for kids to have lots of sugars and stimulants. It can throw them off in the long run. So fruit puddings, green smoothies, fresh fruit juices, green juices, fruit smoothies, frozen green pops. These are all great. I'm sure you have everyone making food with you when you are with them and so this little one can also help making her own stuff. Keep her banana intake to 1 per day as lots of bananas can be binding. If you'd like, you can add a bit of psyllium powder to her puddings for extra fiber. You can make chia puddings for her and let her have a small amount. Coconut oil would be helpful but she won't need too much of it per day. Avocados are perfect foods for small kids. Maybe in the short time you are with them, you'll be able to glean some insight to see if she has any allergies/sensitivities. This will be a good litmus test when you come in with your raw foods and see how that shift will be on her diet and her constipation problems. I've written all of this assuming that the child isn't eatings lots of fruits and greens already. In my mind, a little child would have 1-3 BMs per day if she was drinking lots of water and eating cleansing fruits, healing greens and good fats. If she still isn't, then some fine tuning would be in order - food combining, learning about possible allergies/sensitivities (including environmental), good fats are added, enough calories eaten each day, ample exercising and movement for this little one and overall checking in to see if there isn't some other unknown going on. Thank you for your question and have keep having fun with all your families! xoxo, Linda +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Ask Linda! Please feel free to submit your questions to linda AT vt-fiddle.com. Questions don’t have to be completely raw food related but please bring questions on health, recipes, diet, weight issues, nutrition, parenting, nursing, pregnancy, spirituality or whatever it is you’d like to ask. I’ll do my best to answer and will most certainly learn from this as much as I can give.
This question came in my inbox on Oct 22nd. QUESTION: What do people most like to use your nut milk bags for? Do they blend in a Vita-Mix and then strain through the bag? If so, does this work better than using a Champion juicer, for example? —Marsha ANSWER: Dear Marsha, Thanks for your email! People use our bags for:
- straining nut/seed milks
- straining juices
- making beer
- making kombucha and other probiotic drinks
- making tempeh
- apple cider press filters
- making cheeses
- making ice creams
- making teas
- bath herbal soaks
- we've even had carpenters use our bags to collect saw dust from their equipment!
posting this up at the blog. The column goes out every month or two. I figured, I'd post up Q & As each week as they come to me quite frequently... Ask Linda! Please feel free to submit your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org. Questions don’t have to be completely raw food related but please bring questions on health, recipes, diet, weight issues, nutrition, parenting, nursing, pregnancy, spirituality or whatever it is you’d like to ask. I’ll do my best to answer and will most certainly learn from this as much as I can give. Question: If my daily organic/raw diet is: fruit in a.m. (no bananas), green drink around 11:30, guacomole on raw crackers (maybe 1 cup), fruit around 4 or 5 pm, green drink at 7. How much trouble would I be in (health-wise) if I kept to this diet for 3-6 months? Thanks, P Answer: Hey there P!! Hoping you are well! Can I ask why you are wanting to stay this strict for 3-6 months? Do you plan on varying it at all? My general response is that I think you'll be able to eat it and you'll probably feel quite good from all the greens and fruit. I'm thinking that you'll want some variety or else you will start to get bored and then one would be more likely to pig out on something unhealthy. But health-wise, I think you'll probably feel pretty darn good. Here's some recommendations/suggestions/questions: * 1 cup of guacamole is a lot of avocados to eat each day. In the beginning, that will feel like a damn good treat and for that, I say go for it. I also want to let you know that most likely the body will grow tired of 1 cup of guac a day pretty quickly. I like that you are choosing to have your biggest caloric meal in the middle of the day. That is something that I'm working on here but habit and schedule dictates something other for me at the moment. Tell me how that goes for you. It's most important to get a varied diet in. I personally find myself able to eat similar things for about 1-2 weeks and then I want to change it up. Variety is the spice of life and for your body, it's how you can make sure you get the most nourishment. * I'd probably recommend an ample amount of greens each day. Greens are the healers and fruits are the cleansers. Both work well together. I'd recommend that you eat more greens than fruit though for greater health and vitality. Remember to change up your greens. This is important. Some greens have high amounts of oxalic acid in them and if you overindulge, it may cause problems in the long run. SO best to change them up. Eat local lettuces, chard, kales, collards, mesclun mixes, spinach, green sprouts and even get in some wild edibles while we still have some in the ground. (Better hurry! It's snowing as I write this!) * Quantity and quality is key for your green drinks and fruit. If eating this diet that you have below is going to work, I would imagine the quantity is going to increase and because of that, the quality will have to be there. I'm glad you wrote organic because in order to eat a lot of fruits/veggies, it would be important to me to ensure that I wasn't ingesting a slew of pesticides, herbicides, fungicides in my fruit/veggies. (Kind of defeating the purpose of eating all those fruits and veggies.) Also, by QTY, I'm wanting to say that having a green drink in the late morning doesn't really consist of an 8 or 10 oz drink. Please don't be surprised to find yourself wanting to drink 16+ oz juices and 32 oz smoothies. This is what fills you up and gives your body super vitamins and nutrients. * What kind of trouble are you imagining yourself getting in? I would say that if you imagine trouble for yourself, chances are great that it will occur. So if you want to do a change in your diet like this, why not try for just 30 days and see how it goes? Then you can adjust and adapt and change to suit what your body is telling you from there on. From what you are describing below, I think 30 days will be a great time frame to give yourself this blessing. I see it as a blessing and if you gear yourself to receiving a gift, then it will come to fruition that way. To me, if I set myself up to have to endure something for 3-6 months, then it won't work out to my benefit in the same way. Do you see the difference? If you are worried that you might become deficient in something after 3-6 months of a trial diet/lifestyle, then try it only for a month. Unless you are really sick, it would be hard to become deficient in one month. And incorporating all that fresh fruit and veggies would only be beneficial, me thinks. * Please remember to incorporate seaweeds in your daily regimen. Seaweeds (sea veggies) give us important minerals and help to get the junk out of our bodies. I know for some the thought of eating seaweed is weird to them. I hear people say that the oceans are polluted and therefore eating seaweeds is bad. I tell you what, eating the flesh of animals living in the ocean is a lot worse. Toxins reside in the fat of all of us. Eating fatty, fleshy fish is only ensuring that you are eating those pollutants from the ocean. Seaweed is like eating a filtering system in a way. It also gives us iodine and other vitamins/minerals like calcium, sodium, magnesium, potassium, iron, and zinc, to name a few. Here's a link of other health benefits of seaweed: http://health.learninginfo.org/seaweed-benefits.htm * Please remember to incorporate fermented foods, too. Fermented foods are probiotic foods. They are good for your gut and your overall health. Things like kim chi, sauerkraut (if you don't find it in the refrigerated section, then don't eat it! Sauerkraut is a beautiful fermented food but if you find it on the shelf with the condiments, it has been pasteurized so it is no longer full of life.), miso, kombucha (another thing to watch out for pasteurization), to name a few. (Note: In Japan, tempeh and tofu are fermented but in the US, they are all pasteurized in order to have a longer shelf life at the stores. Bummer. So make your own or ask your local tempeh/tofu makers to sell you their tempeh BEFORE they pasteurize it. Here's a good article on the health benefits of fermented foods: http://www.chelseagreen.com/content/cultural-rehabilitation-the-health-benefits-of-fermented-foods/ * Also remember superfoods - things like VitaMineral Green, Spirulina/Elixir of the Lake, Maca, Fruits of the Earth, cooconut oil are great foods to have with your smoothies as they boost up the nutrition and that helps when we live in colder climates. So that's what I have to say for now. (I'm sure I could go on, actually) However, this is already getting long and then I risk giving you too much information. Good luck to you and many blessings in your life and health endeavors, Linda