Divine Energy Bars

I absolutely love these as a tasty & healthy snack or treat. 

Prep Time: 10 minutes or less!

Yield: 16 servings

Ingredients:

2 cups rolled oats

1/2 cup dried cranberry

1/4 cup raw pumpkin seeds (pepitas)

1/4 cup raw sunflower seeds

1/4 cup cacao nibs

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 cup almond butter (or peanut butter)

1/3 cup agave nectar

1/4 cup brown rice syrup

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Cocoa powder or shredded coconut (optional)

Directions:

1. Combine oats, cranberry, pumpkin and sunflower seeds, cacao nibs and cinnamon in large bowl. Set aside.

2. In a different bowl, combine almond butter, agave nectar, brown rice syrup, and vanilla until well mixed.

3. Pour wet mixture into dry ingredients and stir well.

Pour the mixture into a square dish (8×8) and press firmly with your fingers or flat spatula to settle it. Sprinkle with your choice of coating. Place it in the freezer for 20 hours and cut into bite size pieces. Keep in freezer up to 4 days.

*You can create your own version of it, mix and match ingredients, try different flavors: cranberries, nuts, other seeds, flax seeds, other nut butters, honey, barley malt syrup, other coatings, use whatever you have or like! Enjoy :)

 

No Bake Cacao Cranberry Granola

Granola- the homemade kind– is by far one of my favorite all time foods.  I have it with milk for a snack, add it to cottage cheese, yogurt, fruit or even a protein shake for breakfast. I gave up on trying to find a store bought brand that meets my nutritional requirements so I came up with this variation.  It includes Raw Cacao Powder– a wonderful power food rich in antioxidants, iron, magnesium and fiber too. I hope you love it as much as  I do!!

No Bake Cacao Cranberry Granola

2 cups rolled oats

1/4 sup sliced almonds

1/8 cup chopped walnuts or pecans

1/8 cup shredded, unsweetened coconut

1/4 cup dried cranberries

2 TBSP Raw Organic Cacao Powder (I buy Navitas brand from Whole Foods or other health food store)

1 TBSP Canola  Oil

2 TBSP Honey

1 TBSP Vanilla Extract

Pinch Salt

1.Mix all in a bowl.  Store in fridge.

Makes 4-6 servings depending on how you are using it.

I make a double recipe so it lasts me about one week. You can even add sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, chia seeds. Have fun!

 

Sweet Wheatberry Salad

I have a sweet tooth and when I came across this Wheatberry Salad recipe in Clean Food by Terry Walters I had to share it!  If you have a gluten allergy or have a sensitive stomach (grains can be tough to digest) use wild rice instead of wheatberries.

1 1/2 cups wheatberries

Sea Salt

4-5 scallions, chopped

1 cup chopped peaches

1/2 cup currants

1/2 cup toasted sunflower seeds

Juice of 1 lime

3 tablespoons toasted sesame oil

Rinse wheatberries, soak in bowl with enough water to cover for at least one hour, then drain.  In a large pot bring 3 1/4 cups water to boil. Add wheatberries and pinch of salt, reduce heat, cover and simmer until all water is absorbed (35-45 minutes). Set aside to cool, then fluff with fork.

In large bowl, combine cooked wheatberries with scallions, peaches, currants and toasted sunflower seeds. Toss with lime juice, toasted sesame oil and pinch of salt. Serve at room temperature or chilled.

Serves 8

 

 

Blueberry Banana Vanilla Nut Shake

When the temperature rises I add more ingredients to make my protein shakes into a meal, rather than a snack. Lately I have been disappointed at how many so called healthy smoothie shops load up their “healthy” protein shakes with sugar and then charge upwards of $7.00.  If you aren’t able to make your shake at home, and you buy it from a smoothie place, be sure to check or ask for the ingredients to ensure there is no added sugar in the form of chocolate syrup or frozen yogurt.  Below is a shake I often make for lunch. I make enough for 3 days and keep it in the fridge.

Blueberry Banana Vanilla Nut Shake

Makes 3 Servings

3 cups unsweetened almond milk

1 cup filtered water

2 tbsp tofutti cream cheese or low-fat cream cheese

3/4 cup vanilla energizing soy protein, or banana whey protein

1/2 cup almonds

1 cup blueberries

1 banana, chopped

1 apple, sliced

6 oz lightly steamed kale

2 carrots, peeled

2 tbsp vanilla extract

dash cinnamon

Add liquids to blender first.  Add remaining ingredients and blend.

 

Peanut Butter Banana Bites

Peanut butter is one of my all time favorite snacks…and paired with bananas, this recipe is simply delicious without breaking the “calorie bank”.

Peanut Butter Banana Bites

INGREDIENTS:

2 T Reduced fat all natural creamy peanut butter

1 T Low-fat vanilla flavored yogurt

1/3 ea Banana, sliced

dash Cinnamon

1 ea. whole grain flour tortilla, 6 inch in diameter

DIRECTIONS:

Combine peanut butter and yogurt in a small bowl and stir until blended. Spread peanut butter mixture over tortilla. Arrange sliced banana in a single layer over the peanut butter spread. Sprinkle with cinnamon. Roll up tortilla and slice into 3 to 6 bite pieces. Makes 1 serving

NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION PER SERVING:

Calories: 168

5 g protein

21 g carbohydrates

7 g fat

3g fiber

Black-Eyed Pea Summer Salad Dip

Black Eyed Pea Summer Salad/Dip 

Hands down this is one of my favorite summer salad/dip recipes because it is easy, tasty, healthy and yes, packed with protein and fiber.

Enjoy it as a side dish or serve as a dip with blue corn chips, flax seed chips…even toasted pita.

Ingredients:

* 1 large tomato, diced

* 1/2 medium red onion, finely chopped

* 1 small red bell pepper, finely chopped

* 1 jalapeno, finely chopped

* 2 tablespoons chopped green onions

* 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves

* 1/4 cup rice wine vinegar

* 1/4 cup canola oil

* 1/2 can sweet corn

* Salt and freshly ground black pepper

* 2 (15-ounce) cans black-eyed peas, drained

Directions:

Combine the first 6 ingredients in a bowl.
In a separate small bowl, whisk together the rice wine vinegar, canola oil, salt and pepper.
Toss everything together and let marinate for at up to 8 hours in the refrigerator before serving. Serves 6.

Note: If you enjoy mango and you have a well functioning digestive system (i.e.: your stomach can tolerate fruit with food) chop one ripe mango and add it in. YUM.

 

Strawberry Guacamole

This is a wonderful recipe to add to your summer fun…adapted from Clean Food by Terry Walters.

Strawberry Guacamole

1 cup diced strawberries

1/2 cup peeled and diced jicama

1 watermelon radish, peeled and diced*

2 avocados, peeled, pitted and diced (save pits)

1 jalepeno, seeded and minced

Juice of 2 limes

1/4 teaspoon sea salt

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

In a large bowl, combine strawberries, jicama, watermelon radish, avocados and jalapeno. In a separate bowl combine lime juice, salt, garlic powder and olive oil. Pour over strawberry mixture and stir until combined. If not serving immediately, place avocado pits in bowl to keep dip from turning brown. Cover and refrigerate. Before serving, remove pits and stir gently. Makes 3 cups.

*If you can’t find watermelon radish (sweet and tasty!), you can substitute tomatillos, cipollini onions or peaches.

the science of soy: part 1

Over the years I have heard conflicting information from “established, reputable professionals” about the health benefits of soy protein.  I happen to love soy protein.  In 2003 when I found the highest quality soy protein on the market, from Shaklee, it changed my life.  My energy levels increased, my weight stabilized, my hypoglycemia episodes decreased dramatically, and my mood improved.  Because quality makes all the difference when it comes to “food”, I encourage you to take the time to read this excerpt on the Science of Soy from Dr. Jamie McManus, M.D.
Chair, Medical Affairs, Health Sciences & Education, Shaklee Corporation.

“Soy is a natural and traditional Asian food that nutrition scientists are continuing to study with renewed interest today. Long valued as a healthy vegetarian protein source, recent research has discovered vital compounds in soy called isoflavones, which provide potentially powerful health benefits of their own beyond the simple delivery of healthy nutrients in soy, from protein to minerals.

Science never stands still nor is complete. The findings of newer studies may provide conflicting results as compared to earlier studies or visa versa. This is true even in the case of a super food like soy. For example, there have been a few very limited studies on soy that have received much attention on the internet resulting in great confusion amongst consumers and even healthcare professionals. Certain websites have misrepresented the overall data on soy protein and I am quite concerned about this because when consumed as part of an overall well balanced diet, soy protein has great potential to help improve lives by reducing the risk of the leading causes of death and disability – heart disease, stroke and several types of cancer.

We (at Shaklee) are committed to monitoring the latest research and applying the very best nutrition research available to address people’s health concerns and support their overall health. Soy protein has been an important cornerstone of our nutritional programs and our consensus is that there are decades of favorable and positive epidemiologic and clinical evidence to support our perspective. Because we pride ourselves on having the highest standards for scientific research, we decided to engage an independent scientific expert to thoroughly review all of the soy research and write a complete scientific review.

Mark Messina, PhD is an adjunct associate professor at Loma Linda University and the Executive Director of the Soy Nutrition Institute.  A renowned soy expert, Dr. Messina has been studying the health effects of soy for more than 20 years and has published more than 60 scientific papers and given more than 500 presentations on soy foods to health professionals around the world. From his extensive scientific white paper, Dr. Messina has prepared a two-part update on Soy. Part 1, linked from this letter, provides the latest science on the health benefits of soy consumption. Dr. Messina’s detailed investigation cites published scientific research studies he analyzed to reach his conclusions and includes specific references to these studies at the end of each of the two parts of his report.

The first part of this series, Soy and Your Health: An Update on the Benefits, gives you the latest information on favorable findings on soy.  Here you’ll learn about new research evidence for the numerous health benefits of soy – how a daily moderate intake of soy can protect against heart disease and stroke, may help prevent certain types of cancer, potentially alleviate menopause symptoms, support bone health and possibly even exert favorable effects on aging skin. To read the Part One of the series click here.

Then stay tuned next month for Part Two, Soy and Your Health: Dispelling the Myths.  Learn the truth about the so-called “anti-nutrients” in soy, why soy isoflavones do not elevate breast cancer risk, how soy really affects thyroid and brain function, the real difference between unfermented and fermented soy and much more.”