Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The Wonders of Raw Honey

The sun is shining, birds are chirping, and the trees are blooming. The buzzing of the bees has begun, and Spring is here. I love Spring for so many reasons. A top reason is the abundant availability of local raw honey. We enjoy it immensely in our home. My boys eat peanut butter and honey sandwiches, we sweeten our yogurt with it, put it on oatmeal, and use it as a sweetener in desserts instead of white, bleached, processed sugar.

For high quality, and optimal health the words local and raw are imperative. Our bodies that are fearfully and wonderfully made are created to adapt to our environments so that we can deal with the environment that we live in everyday. That is why it is so beneficial to eat foods that are grown and made locally. Today we'll stick the importance of honey.

If you suffer from seasonal allergies, a preventative treatment that I would advise adopting into your regimen is taking 1-2 teaspoons of raw honey each day. The reason for this is that raw local honey contains the pollen that is causing all of those sniffy, sneezing noses, watery eyes, and itchy skin. When we ingest some of that pollen studies show that it allows our bodies to get used to the pollen present in the area that is bothering us. So think if this as a noninvasive, inexpensive, pleasant vaccination without any negative side effects.

Raw honey is wonderful if you are experiencing a sore throat. Taking a teaspoon of raw honey mixed with propolis, a few times a day will help coat the throat and kill any oncoming infection. Propolis is a dark, sticky resin that seeps from the buds of some trees and bark. Propolis contains many minerals, including magnesium, calcium, phosphorus and potassium, as well as beta carotene, bioflavonoids, vitamins B1 and B2. It acts like nature's own antibiotic. Bees actually mix it with wax flakes from the glands on their tummies in order to keep intruders out of the hive.

Raw foods are loaded with much needed enzymes, vitamins, minerals, and healthy bacteria. Honey allows our bodies to digest many foods that are sometimes more difficult to break down like certain whole grains. Once we heat our foods over 120 degrees many of these things decrease or die off altogether. This is the case with honey. Raw honey can be recognized by it's solid state, it's more white in color, and it should state raw or unheated and unfiltered on the jar.

*As a precaution it has been said that children under the age of one should not consume honey. It contains a healthy bacteria, Clostridium botulinum, that babies digestive systems are not able to handle yet. It could cause botulism.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Kale, I Could Kiss You!

Bar none, hands down, my favorite leafy green is kale. I laugh sometimes because people will come over to my plate and look, and say, "What is that? Is that kale? I only thought kale was a garnish." Then that opens a beautiful door for me to talk about a great superfood in my opinion.

Kale is a dark leafy green vegetable in the cruciferous family. It's a great source of calcium for strong bones, antioxidant cancer fighting and immune boosting Vitamin C, Vitamin A, folic acid (B-6) that reduces osteoporosis, helps healthy unborn babies stay strong, and reduces heart disease, potassium that regulates of our acid pH, and is a vital component in the building of our muscles, magnesium that assists enzymes in our bodies, reduces muscle cramping, and helps with protein assimilation, and carotenoids a precursor to Vitamin A that radically fights cancer.

Whenever possible you want to eat organic kale. Like all leafy greens organic is best because they are heavily sprayed with toxic cancer causing chemicals. It is easy to grow in the garden and you can grow it in spring or fall. There are several different varieties of kale.

Kale is lovely eaten raw in a salad or cooked in a saute or soup. I thoroughly enjoy it both ways. I also put kale in my green smoothies. Eaten raw its an excellent source of enzymes which greatly assist in the breakdown of our food. If you'd like a free kale salad recipe go on Facebook,like my page, and I will email you a recipe.