It’s pomegranate season! If that doesn’t excite you, let us tell you why it should. Pomegranates not only help with weight loss, as they are low in calorie and high in fiber, they also offer the body a significant amount of nutritional support, especially as cold/flu season approaches.
Those jewel like seeds both sweet and tart, are major immune system boosters, and may even fight off cancer because of their potent cocktail of vitamin C and antioxidants. In addition, these autumn fruits are a wonderful source of B vitamins, vitamin K and minerals such as calcium, copper and potassium. We’ve said it before, but it’s so true, eating seasonally gives your body the best of what nature has to offer; this month, it’s all about pomegranates.
If you’ve been turned off by the pomegranate’s hard to crack shell or the time consuming process of removing each little flavorful seed, just know that practice does make perfect in this case.
HOW TO CRACK THE POMEGRANATE CODE
The trick is to first cut off the crown of the pomegranate
With a sharp knife cut into the skin about an 1 inch deep as if you were cutting segments, but without cutting all the way through.
Cut about 6 partial segments
Take your knife through the center piece where you’ve cut the crown. Push down with the knife and wiggle it until the pomegranate naturally breaks apart.
Enjoy hundreds of ruby red seeds. Patience and diligence are your keywords of wisdom here.
Hold the segments over a bowl as you peel the seeds away from their skin.
The effort is well worth the end result.
If you want to really rock n’ roll with your bowl of pomegranates, you can add some finely chopped fresh mint and squeeze grapefruit over the top. It will feel like a dance between the last days of summer and the arrival of fall, when the qualities of food and their flavors collide between vibrant and earthy. Enjoy!
Are you overwhelmed by the array, of often contradictory, information out there about what to eat? I’m not going to convince you to adhere to a particular diet, claiming one is better than all the rest. Because guess what? You can acknowledge all the information out there without feeling like you have to prescribe to any one set of dietary rules. Only you can figure out how to best nourish your unique constitution, but it takes practice and awareness.
With a variety of food philosophies available to us, it almost feels like food is the new religion. We announce things about ourselves like, “I’m Paleo or I’m Vegan,” and it represents a huge part of who we are and how we live in the world. To many, these food philosophies can be intimidating. You don’t have to be a macrobiotic raw vegan or a die hard paleo to learn a few things about these systems of eating and explore them. Here are some tips to make the the commitment towards a healthful mindful diet.
Create a mission statement.
Decide what is the most important aspect of healthy eating and how can you honor that. For example, my mission statement goes something like this: I eat to nourish the health of my body. The foods I eat are real foods, with real ingredients. I listen to my body and I feed it accordingly.
Practice body awareness.
Close your eyes and follow your breath for a few moments. Then ask your body what it needs. Don’t try to grasp at the answer; just let it come naturally. When you fully tune in to yourself, you will find the truth of what your body needs. It may be rest, or warmth, or hydration… Practice this throughout your day and before eating. Don’t eat because the clock indicates its meal time, eat because you are hungry. Don’t just feed the hunger; eat to truly nourish your body. Does your body want something light and refreshing like an apple or a green juice? Does your body crave something more dense with healthy fats and protein like an avocado, hummus or a meal replacement shake?
Commit to your way of eating, then really go for it!
You are in charge of your health because you have the unique ability to tap in and pay attention to what’s going on within. The best advice I can give is be a student to life. Learn about food and learn about yourself. Having both nutrition-knowledge and self-knowledge will make you wise when choosing what is best to eat.
Cleanse your body and then slowly introduce certain foods back into your diet.
If you are used to eating meat daily or regularly, take a break. One of the best ways to explore how your body digests and tolerates foods is through cleansing From there, try eating a raw or plant based diet for a few weeks. Notice changes in your digestion, energy levels, mental clarity, weight, and skin etc. If you choose to go back to eating animal based foods, limit your intake. You may be surprised to find that you function better eating a variety of plant based foods with no or limited animal based foods. If you feel you need to eat meat, then do. You can also choose to eat an abundance of vegetables too.
Raw juice and plant foods help the body heal because they are alkalizing, they optimize digestion and create a healthy flow of life energy from within. We are not here to tell you what to eat. We are here to offer you the ability to eat clean whenever you need. If you can’t be a raw, gluten free vegan, be someone who eats a raw, gluten free diet 1-3-or-5 days a week. We are here to serve and support anyone who wants to learn about food and explore their diet. Figure out what that means to you. If you have any questions about your diet please drop me a comment!
Celebrate Halloween this year with a refreshing perspective and a healthier bag of treats. Halloween can mean more than just costumes and candy; it gives us the opportunity to bring awareness to our deeper connection to the earth, as we recognize the cycle of life and death. This Halloween tune into what’s happening to the earth. Recognize how the harvest season resonates with your own desire to gather the fruits of your hard work.
Many may celebrate Halloween by indulging in candy. That doesn’t have to be how you define your celebration though. It’s a beautiful thing to celebrate a holiday with food, but it’s always wise to question the quality of your treats and use your wisdom to satisfy your sweet tooth without compromising your health.
Here is your guide for celebrating Halloween in a way that will make your inner health warrior so proud:
Stay away from major brand candies.
GMOs, artificial ingredients, partially hydrogenated oils, …No thank you! Instead check out your local natural food grocery store for healthier alternatives. Opt for delicious non GMO, natural candies without all the terrible ingredients.
Decide what it really a special treat for you and don’t settle for anything less.
Don’t eat candy just because the holiday makes it so easily available and abundant. Take time to get a treat that will wow you and isn’t loaded with bad ingredients.
Add a fun tradition to your Halloween.
Get creative by doing something that is unique to you and your family…Gather the pumpkin seeds after carving your pumpkins and roast them with fine sea salt, or create a maze of lanterns in your yard – the elements of light and dark can create a space for great self reflection, create ornaments out of seasonal fruits such as pomegranates or persimmons and string them from a tree in your yard… You are the crafter of your holiday tradition, let it mean something special to you.
Fit in a pre/post cleanse to support your health before/after a holiday. Sugar and excess sweets can deplete the body’s reserve of vitamins and minerals so make sure you are replenishing them after eating sweets. Up your vegetable intake as a way to defend your health.
Ayurveda is based on the philosophy that everything is made up of 5 elements (ether, air, fire, water and earth). The combination of elements that create our constitution become our dosha. Your dosha represents both your physical structure and the qualities of who you are. Ayurveda seeks to understand the nature of the dosha because it is the key to understanding how to create balance.
When it comes to your diet, the foods you eat can either support balance or contribute to imbalance.
Take the Dosha Quiz!
Physique: a.) Thin, long frame; tends to be taller than average
b.) Medium build and average height
c.) Big bones and large frame, tends to be shorter
Weight: a.) Underweight, or at the lowest of your weight range, and thin
b.) Average weight and maintains weight at a steady level, not losing or gain weight easily
c.) Heavier body weight and tends to gain weight easily
Skin: a.) Dry, thin skin
b.) Red tone to complexion, sensitive skin or tends towards acne. Also may have freckles
c.) Thick smooth, soft soft
Eyes: a.) Small beady eyes
b.) Intense deep penetrating eyes
c.) Large round eyes
Hair: a.) Dry, thin hair that breaks easily
b.) Fine, soft hair
c.) Thick, course, lustrous hair
Face: a.) Long and narrow
b.) angular with sharp jaw line
Movement: a.) Moves quickly, walks fast, always in motion
b.) Direct and deliberate in motion
c.) Moves slowly, prefers to be sedentary
Speech: a.) Speaks quickly and talks a lot
b.) Speaks clearly and to the point
c.) Prefers to listen rather than speak
Voice: a.) Soft pitched, hoarse voice that may crack
b.) medium pitched voice
c.) deep melodious voice
Sleep: a.) Requires less sleep, 4-6 hours a day and has difficulty falling asleep and staying asleep
b.) Functions well on 6-8 hours a day, and goes easily in and out of sleep.
c.) Sleeps 8 or more hours and sleeps very deeply, usually not waking throughout the night
Vibe: a.) Tends to often be anxious or nervous
b.) Aggressive, impatient and passionate
c.) Calm and easygoing
Decision Making: a.) Very difficult to make decision and trust decisions
b.) Decisions are made very methodically and with good reason
c.) Easily makes decisions, more intuitively
Appetite: a.) Variable. Sometimes you eat very little and other times you eat a lot
b.) Steady appetite with regular meals
c.) Not often hungry and can skip meals
Sensitivity to Weather: a.) You dislike and sometimes cannot tolerate cold weather
b.) You prefer cooler weather and cannot tolerate the heat
c.) You can tolerate any weather but dislike the cold damp.
Relationship to money: a.) Impulsive and spend frivolously
b.) Enjoys spending on luxury items but is aware of budget
c.) Doesn’t like to spend money, saves more than average
Response to stress: a.) You get anxious when stressed
b.) You get irritable and angry
c.) You withdraw and like to deal with emotions privately
Appetite: a.) Variable
b.) Very strong appetite
c.) Low appetite
Bowl Movements: a.) Tends towards constipation
b.) Easily eliminates 2-3 times a day
c.) 1 large bowl movement same time daily
Results: Mostly A – Vata Dosha
Mostly B – Pitta Dosha
Mostly C – Kapha Dosha
Vata Balancing Foods:
Vata especially needs warming and hearty foods during fall and winter. Nourishing soups, Lentils and rice, and limit too many raw foods.
– Lightly steamed root vegetables
– Ripe sweet fruits
– Warm grains
– Spices: cumin, ginger, cardamom, cinnamon, fennel, cloves and black pepper.
– Raw honey
– Sesame Oil
We’ve all seen the add, “Got Milk.” You may have been convinced that drinking milk was an important part of a healthy diet. In more recent times, the idea that milk is full of health benefits has been challenged. Milk no longer has that same reputation of being a health food. In fact, your grocery store likely offers an array of alternatives to cow’s milk. Soy, nut, seed, and coconut milk have been growing in popularity and many would assume they are a much healthier alternative.
Here’s what you need to know about alternative milk options:
Fresh nut milk is a wonderful alternative to cow’s milk, especially if you are lactose intolerant or choose not to eat dairy. I don’t include soy milk here because of its controversial background. Besides the fact that soy has been linked to interfering with the body’s natural hormone balance, soy itself is a huge business. The majority of soy is GMO and has become so readily available because it is cheap to produce. If you are trying to avoid dairy, look at some better alternatives, other than soy.
Learn to differentiate between the quality of your options. Look for added sugar, additives and preservatives such as carrageenan, which is a thickening agent and has been linked with gastrointestinal inflammation. No thank you! Question the nature of the foods you eat. Just because you read somewhere that almond milk is the latest and greatest health food, don’t just assume that all almond milk is the same.
So are nut milks really good for you?
There are two answers to this question. Yes, fresh nut milks are a much healthier alternative to processed, pasteurized cow’s milk, especially the non organic type. However, there are two types of nut milk. Fresh nut milk, which offers the wonderful benefits of vitamins and minerals that come from the freshness of the nut. Then there is the second type of nut milk: the type that sits on the shelf for months, has added sugar, flavoring and preservatives. This form of nut milk has been processed to the point that the original nutrients have been depleted. So to answer the question, “Is nut milk really good for you,” you have to consider the quality, the process and the added ingredients.
When choosing a nut milk, it should be fresh (needing refrigeration) and the ingredients should be simple and healthy. It is hard to find fresh nut milk that is truly health benefitting. All Urban remedy nut milks are cold pressed fresh and made to consume within a few days so that you get the intended good health benefits. So when you don’t have time to soak, press and perfect your nut milk recipe, count on Urban Remedy’s high quality nut milks. We believe that food is healing.
Common diseases, such as diabetes, threaten our quality of life and even kill us. So why aren’t we fighting back? Most of us know that our diet greatly affects whether or not our body functions well. Change is never easy, but the benefits are so incredibly
Modern times call for modern warriors: those who are willing to seek the truth and live the truth. Truth: You hold great power over your own health. Truth: When you feel empowered to make healthier choices, you help make the world a healthier place.
Remember a time when diabetes wasn’t a common theme of childhood. Our bodies need to be nourished with foods that are intended to keep us healthy. When you enter a mainstream grocery store, there are NOT a lot of real food options. Instead, there are” food substances.” The enormous list of ingredients, along with the added corn syrup and sugar in nearly all processed foods, is unfortunate. Food is meant to be healing, but the wrong kind of food can be harmful.
Live with food wisdom. Examine your diet. How much of it is made up of fresh living foods that are feeding the needs of your body at a cellular level? How much sugar are you consuming on average each day? Read the labels on the food you buy. Just because something says, “All Natural,” “Healthy,” or” Good for You,” doesn’t mean it is. If a food product has a long list of ingredients that you can’t pronounce, put it back on the shelf. It doesn’t belong in your body.
Cleanse and Nourish your body regularly with foods that will help you heal and promote good health. Not all cleanses are created equally. Natural raw juices can be high in sugar. Make sure you are choosing a low glycemic cleanse that will help regulate your blood sugar rather than spike it.
Between Cleanses, choose a disease fighting diet. A disease fighting diet simply means one that is going to support the overall functioning of your body, promoting health at every level. Raw juices, raw foods, whole foods and nutritional supplements are your very best friends.
If diabetes runs in your family and you want to give yourself the best chance at good health, start by changing your diet. If it is true, you are what you eat, then choose to eat what is alive and vibrant!
So much of life blooms from a drop of nectar. It is the reason that flowers open to the sun and invite the birds and the bees to play.
That sweetness in life is at the root of our knowing to reproduce, bloom and be vital. That sweet nectar found in the rhythm of the seasons can be witnessed in a thriving garden, as well as in our own desire to feel satisfied. The bees joyously labor over the flower, and from that we get the fruit and honey that fills our own table with variety and an abundance of nutrients.
Sugar, naturally found in the tissues of most plants, has undergone some changes throughout history. These changes have more recently left us with a refined substance enjoyed for nothing other than its taste. Recent claims go as far as defining sugar as a poison to the body. Refined sugar is full of calories, but offers zero benefits to the body. The body doesn’t know how to utilize this type of sugar and it actually depletes the body of its own minerals, vitamins and proteins. So even though we may think of poison as a substance that kills us, it is becoming more evident that over time, sugar is degrading our body and contributing to diseases that eventually do kill us. Now is a great time to end your relationship with processed sugar and make friends with some healthier sweet alternatives.
The good news for all you sweet toothed, consciously minded food enthusiasts, is that you can easily feed your sweet tooth in a more self loving way.
The sweet taste of our diet is in a variety of foods that actually help to really sustain our health and give us a sense of satiability. In Ayurvedic Medicine, food is classified into 6 tastes: Sweet, Salty, Pungent, Sour, Bitter, and Astringent. Ideally, we find a way to balance these tastes and include each in our daily diet, which means treating yourself to some sweets is truly a necessity at times.
Satisfy your sweet tooth this summer with ripe fruits, dried fruits and nutritive sweeteners such as date paste, coconut sugar and raw honey. For all you chocolate lovers with a finicky aversion to anything but the real thing, our raw Cacao Mousse promises to please.
There is the popular saying that it takes 21 days to form a new habit. Lets just say there is no one prescription or time frame for all. When it comes to our health, it’s important to recognize that creating good habits is a process.
When forming a new habit, the brain actually creates new neural pathways. These neural pathways become stronger the longer you hold a habit, eventually turning a habit into a natural practice.
Lets say you have been wanting to create healthier eating habits. Look at the individual actions around your eating and create one simple plan at a time.
If eating more raw living foods is something that interests you, commit to making raw foods one of your daily meals. Over several weeks that raw meal will begin to feel normal. Preparing it, eating it and digesting it will no longer feel new. Something very cool happens when we commit to doing the same thing over and over again, it becomes just a part of how we live.
Sometimes having the knowledge to do what we want isn’t always enough. We need tools to take an idea and turn it into a practice. You can apply this to all areas of your life.
Forming a better relationship with the foods you eat requires three things: Knowledge, Good Habits and Commitment.
Perhaps, you’ve noticed that suddenly cold pressed, raw, organic juice is EVERYWHERE. The raw juice trend speaks of our growing consciousness towards food and our desire to feed ourselves more wisely. It’s exciting to have so many juice options! But not all juice is created equal. Know what you are drinking and why. Here are some things to know if you are new to the practice!
Pasteurized Juice uses high temperatures to kill any bacteria in the juice. The process of pasteurization comes in handy for big food company that distributes their foods across the country. In this way, juice can be preserved and last for a long time. The majority of juices sold in grocery stores have all been pasteurized. The problem with pasteurized juice is that it maintains its sugar content, but lacks its original nutrient content. Pasteurized juice is the lowest quality of juice in terms of nutritional benefits. It is focused on preservation not health.
HPP (High Pressure Processed)
HPP juice does not use heat but instead high pressure which inactivates certain enzymes by slowing down their chemical processes. This causes the food to deteriorate. The nutrients of the juice are not completely diminished by this process, so it allows the juice to maintain a partial natural state but keeps the juice safe for short shelf life. HPP is a great option for those on the go without daily access to cold-pressed juices.
Cold Pressed Juice
Cold Press Juice extracts juice by first crushing fruits and vegetables and then pressing. This process does not interfere with the natural state of the juice and keeps all nutrients in tact. This juice has a very limited shelf life and should be enjoyed within a few days of being pressed. You are getting raw, unprocessed juice that is full of nutrients. If you don’t have a juicer or don’t have time to juice at home, cold pressed is your best friend.
When it comes to juicing, Fresh is best!
When juice is first pressed the quality of nutrients within the juice are at their highest. Consuming juice as fresh as possible will offer the greatest benefits. If you think you are getting away with a great deal on a pasteurized green juice from the grocery store, think again. The amount of healing nutrients that go into a fresh juice are unmatched. You can spend half the money, and your wallet will benefit, but your body won’t. Choose organic cold pressed whenever you can.
Here’s a tip for How to Start Juicing!
Before you go out and buy the right juicer, put yourself on a one month juice plan. Get your body used to drinking raw juice regularly. If you decide you really want to commit to juicing, then go buy the juicer. Begin gradually… Juicing is a time consuming, messy process, so don’t overwhelm yourself. Try juicing at home 2 days a week and then treat yourself to a cold-pressed juice the other days. Do your best and let Urban Remedy support you with the rest.
How do you sift through all the food labels and know that you are eating clean?
Trying to eat well is challenging enough, but add in a list of food labels and mysterious ingredients and it becomes overwhelming. Non-GMO, Organic, Gluten Free, Vegan, All Natural, Fat Free … Food labels really don’t mean much. We get attached to certain words that describe food and the food industry uses those words to market their foods. Just because a label says Organic, Gluten Free etc. does NOT make it a health food. Take a moment to read ingredients. Understanding ingredients is your key to understanding what you are actually eating. Look for simple ingredients that you can pronounce and understand.
When to let it go and when to say no.
Its almost impossible to eat clean 100% of the time. Give yourself a break sometimes and don’t let your commitment to food run your life. It’s okay to occasionally let it go and enjoy that cookie your co-worker has offered (even if its not the raw vegan version that you’re used to). But also, feel good about saying no to foods that really go against your food integrity. There’s a difference between letting it go because its not a perfect food and saying no to something that doesn’t even qualify as food.
Ask your favorite restaurant how they can better commit to organic and non GMO ingredients.
The joy of eating out can feel stressful if you are left wondering what really goes into the foods at your favorite restaurant. It’s important to speak up. Ask your favorite restaurants how they are doing their best to provide the best quality foods on their menu. Urban Remedy is dedicated to the highest quality; we believe that food should not only taste good. Food should always benefit your body.