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Archive for the ‘Nutrients’ Category

Spiced EggsOne of my passions has always been cooking.  As an herbalist I love looking for creative ways to get herbs into each and every meal.  Herbs not only convey their wonderful aroma and flavor, but also allow us the opportunity to incorporate their medicinal virtues into our daily lives.

Although, the quantity of the herbs we use in cooking are usually not enough to be considered for over coming chronic illnesses, their daily use is certainly beneficial for maintaining or improving overall health and preventing more chronic illnesses from arising.

Here is a wonderfully tasty dish (more…)

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Courtesy: Centers for Disease Control

Courtesy: Centers for Disease Control

The amount of sleep we get and the quality of that sleep is crucial to overall health. While we sleep our bodies are repairing and rebuilding. If we are not getting adequate amounts of sleep we may feel sluggish upon rising and fatigued during the day.

Sleep deprivation is associated with a host of health conditions to include diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular disease (more…)

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I absolutely love spring because it ushers in new beginnings.   Fresh and vibrant plants which lay dormant all winter are now poking their little heads up to feel the warm air and greet the sun.  This is about the time of the year when our Southern Dewberries (Rubus trivialis) start to bloom.  The berries won’t come in until sometime in late April or early May, but the blossoms are just a reminder that soon we will be gorging ourselves on their juicy ripe berries.

The Dewberry is often confused with the Blackberry as they look quite similar.  However, Dewberries fruit earlier and grow close to the ground like a vine, while the Blackberry grows on upright stems or canes.

Like the Blackberry the Dewberries are edible and are a great treat on a warm spring day.  Dewberries like Blackberries can also be used medicinally (more…)

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When you mention to people that you are an herbalist they assume  that you are some kind of vestal health virgin or zealot whose lips have never been pressed against the creamy icing of a Chocolate doughnut. (well… maybe not lately)

Au contraire…Herbalists are human too.  If you look at many of the eclectics and root doctors of the past they began studying about herbs and natural therapeutics because of health problems they were unable to overcome through conventional means.

Being healthy is about finding balance in all aspects of our lives.  Anything taken to an extreme can lead to disease and on the same note, any area where we are deficient can also lead to disease.  Just because we choose to make healthy changes in our lives doesn’t mean that we as Herbalists don’t have our weak moments;  Do we regret these moments…some;  Do we forgive ourselves….mostly….Do we continue to seek out balance in our lives….most certainly;  Do we like chocolate…you bet your astragalus we do.

So, for those of you who do like an occasional indulgence let’s talk about “CHOCOLATE”!!  First of all, chocolate contains minerals that our bodies need.  Here is a chart which shows the amount of minerals in various types of chocolate. (more…)

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I’ve been talking this week about using food as medicine so I thought it only appropriate to share with you one of my favorite local wild edibles, Chenopodium album or Lambsquarter (aka; Goosefoot, fat hen or pigweed).  Each year I grow a garden and I plant all kinds of edible greens such as Collard, Turnip and Mustard.  However, one of the wonderful things about gardening in Florida is that some edibles you don’t even have to plant, they just volunteer.  

Lambsquarter grows everywhere in my area and especially in my garden.  I never pull it up when I am weeding because I use it just like I would any of my other greens.  The leaves of this plant have a very mild taste and are a complete protein. One ounce of Lambsquarter leaves contain 67% of your daily value of Vitamin A,  37% of Vitamin C  and a host of other trace minerals that our bodies need to stay healthy .  This brings us back to the topic of food as medicine.  By eating foods that are high in vitamins and minerals we are nourishing our bodies, keeping our immune system strong and potentially warding off future diseases…that I would say is food as medicine.

Because of its mild taste Lambsquarter can be eaten raw in salads or added to omlets, quiches, fritatas or any other recipe where you might add greens.  If you really want to pump up the nutritional and medicinal value you can cook your Lambsquarters along with garlic, onions and other herbs and spices.

Lambsquarter Fritata

Ingredients:

1/2 cup chopped onion

1 clove of chopped garlic

1/2 cup chopped sweet red pepper

2 tablespoons olive oil

3 eggs

1/2 cup milk

1 cup of fresh chopped Lambsquarter leaves

1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

1 tablespoon grated Parmesan cheese

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

Sautee onion, garlic and peppers in a pan with olive oil until tender.  Add the Lambsquarter leaves and cook until slightly wilted.  Combine beaten eggs and milk and add to the pan along with remaining ingreadients.  Cook for 7-10 minutes over the burner until firm.  May place under broiler for a minute to finish cooking the top. 

Additional notes:  This is just a basic recipe that you can use as a foundation.  Additional herbs and vegetables can be added to suit your taste.  ENJOY!!

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