Christmas Cheer

Many will find this time of year extremely challenging. With diets and temptations abounding. I encourage you to not fall off the wagon during the Christmas, Hanukkah and New Years celebrations. Instead plan a course now to prevent failure. Here are a few tips.

Stay away from refined sweets. I know easier said than done. But, I’ve done it and I know that if I can you can too. Pass that cookie tray in the break room or the cookie exchange. Remember it’s not about food—-it’s about people!

Stay away from grains. Yes, that means breads, cookies and pies! That ought to make the first one easier to follow!

But if you’re going to indulge remember a few things…….

Make it a different kind of year. If you are going to use grains then soak your grains and flours in kefir or whey to break down the phytic acid which prevents digestion and inhibits the absorption of nutrients and blocks enzymes. Use sourdoughs as much as possible. Stay way from refined sugars. Use raw honey for as much as you can. Adding a little maple syrup or even Rapadura or Turbinado. But not too much, they still affect ones blood sugar. I find that raw honey has the least effects on my blood sugar and never puts me back into the craving sugar mode. And I use it in equal amounts when baking.

Try using a variety of flours. For instance coconut, almond and rice. You can replace them for equal measurements. You can find these from Bob’s Red Mill at your local health food store. I used coconut and almond to make a pie crust and it was delicious.

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Indulge yourself instead in Eggnog. Using raw milk, raw cream, raw free range eggs and some raw honey or maple syrup with a dash of organic nutmeg, dash of salt. There’s nothing like it. In fact you can make this one of your favorite morning shakes. Try adding frozen blueberries for extra antioxidants. Many suggest only using the raw egg yolks, since too many raw egg whites can cause a biotin deficiency. A biotin deficiency can increase problems with diabetes, poor pituitary and low thyroid. Even toss in some good oils like coconut or flax and you have a powerhouse drink!

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Macaroons are a wonderful treat and are a good way to use up those egg whites. You can freeze your egg whites in a container and keep adding to them. Make sure you write the number on the container. The recipe from Sally Fallon’s Nourishing Traditions is great.

Sally Fallon’s Macaroons

Beat 4 raw egg whites with a pinch of salt until you have stiff peaks.

Add 2 Tbsp of Arrowroot. And slowly add 1/2 C Maple Syrup and 1 Tbsp Vanilla. Fold in 2 Cups of dried unsweetened coconut.

Drop by spoonfuls onto parchment paper.

Heat oven to 300 and bake for 1/2 hr. Reduce oven to 200 and bake an additional 1 hr. Allow to cool before removing from parchment paper. Store in airtight container. Makes 2 dozen.

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I’m only planning one dessert for Christmas. I’ll be making my favorite Blackberry Cobbler. I froze several bags of berries this summer and it will be a wonderful treat. Plop on some raw cream and yummy! No need to sweeten the cream since it’s already sweet heavy cream!

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There is also a delicious recipe for Gingerbread in Sally Fallon’s Nourishing Traditions. Try it with a lemon butter! Mmmmm! OR raw whipped cream!

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And then if you are a chocolate lover, you must try my healthy chocolates. Chocolate is full of antioxidants and it’s a fermented food. However, most chocolate is also full of sugar! And I suppose that is why most folks with Lyme say they can’t eat chocolate. My solution is to make my own which are to die for. You can switch out the almond butter with peanut butter, or leave it out entirely. Although the opinion around here is that they are better with a nut butter. Enjoy.

Guiltless Chocolates(all measurements are approximate, tweak them as you like)

1/2 Cup raw butter softened

1 Tbsp virgin coconut oil

1 Tbsp almond butter

2 heaping Tbsp “Really Raw” honey (or whatever honey you like)

2 heaping Tbsp organic cocoa (or raw chocolate)

Mix all these ingredients together and drop by the spoonful on a plate lined with waxed paper. Place the plate in the freezer till hardened. Eat quickly because they melt in your hands. The idea here is to eat raw, so use as many raw ingredients as possible. ENJOY! Variations: unsweetened shredded coconut, nuts (crispy), whatever tickles your taste buds!

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Last but not least is homemade ice cream. I’ve made Mother Linda’s recipe for Jeffersonian Ice Cream and it’s really, really good. Try to use raw dairy, even though it’s cooked. It only takes about 25 min’s for it to churn with an electric ice cream maker. It is so worth it!

Remember that the holidays are not an excuse to eat poorly. They are a time to celebrate our Saviours birth and to enjoy family and loved ones. Learn new habits for this New Year and you will begin to see your healing quickly appear!

I also encourage you to invest in Sally Fallon’s book, Nourishing Traditions. It will be an endless resource to your cooking library. Make this New Year a time to recreate the way you see and eat food. Make food your medicine and have a purpose for each bite.

Photo Credit: Flickr linked to original artists.

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