Friday, September 17, 2010

One Crazy Smoothie and Salad....Weird Food Day at my House, LOL

Happy Friday! My day started with a glorious weather morning. There is nothing like waking up to temperatures in the mid 60s. Talk about a perfect crisp morning. Ahhhh, I could really get used to this. ;-)

Dan had appointments that had him out of the office all afternoon so there was no fresh juice made at our house this morning. I felt as though my morning was so restful, LOL. Making breakfast and lunch is a breeze without the juice component. It was like a weekend morning since I wasn’t rushed. ;-)

Today I opted to do something I don’t normally do. I decided to use an exercise DVD. My knees have been begging me to take it easy so I begrudgingly decided to listen for a change. Earlier this week I picked up a Wii Fitness game from the library. Today I decided to try it out. Today’s test was “My Fitness Coach 2”. I have the original so I wanted to try the new version. I am going to play it a few more times before I formally review it. I did need to spend some time on the exercise bike after the game as I didn’t get enough cardio but that may be how I set up the game. That is why I want to spend more time with it before I make a decision about whether this gets a buy or rent rating. ;-)

Breakfast smoothie:

Breakfast this morning was a healthy smoothie containing: 2 kale stalks (leaves and stems about 1 cup packed once it was shredded), 1 carrot cut into thin slices, 1 frozen banana, 1 tablespoon chia seeds, ¼ cup oats (grind first if not using a high powered blender) ¼ teaspoon cinnamon, ¼ teaspoon powdered ginger, ½ inch fresh ginger, ½ cup frozen wild blueberries, 1 lime zested and juiced, about 1 ½ cups cold processed green tea. Add stevia if you want it sweeter.

I used two different types of ginger because one is said to be good for cardiovascular health and the other reduces inflammation. Cinnamon is a constant in my smoothies since it reported to help the body process sugar more effectively. Chia was included for omega 3 fatty acids and to make certain I was properly fueled to process the fat soluble vitamins in the smoothie. Carrot was added for sweetness as well as beta carotene. The oats provide a little body to the smoothie as well as a bit of protein. Green tea is my new favorite smoothie addition. It is so nice to get my EGCG in my smoothie and cut down on the total amount of liquid I consume in a day. ;-) This smoothie contained:

Calories - 338.46
Calories From Fat (10%) - 34.19

Total Fat - 4.09g
Saturated Fat - 0.61g
Cholesterol - 0mg
Sodium - 100.18mg
Potassium - 1133.48mg
Total Carbohydrates - 74.12g
Fiber - 12.64g
Sugar - 18.6g
Protein - 8.79g

Additionally it contained 24,000IU of vitamin A, 98mg of vitamin C, 215mg of calcium, 560mcg of vitamin k, 240mg of phosphorus and 96mg of magnesium. Not too bad for something that only took a few minutes to prepare.

Dietary News?:

Okay so this is somewhat off the topic but I wanted to share because I think it gives you some insight into my brain (scary as that may be). I was talking to an omni friend last night and he told me that he had a taco salad for lunch (no chips, no dressing and only a little cheese) and was going to have a homemade smoothie for dinner followed by frozen grapes. I was so excited to hear this. It may not sound like a big deal to you but any time someone eats more fruits and vegetables I think it is wonderful news. I had to immediately email my vegan dietitian friend who was equally happy about the news. As I said yesterday (in the post or a comment I don’t remember where) I think that all of our diets are a work in process. All of us (me included) can do things to make our diets more healthful. However every little decision that each of us makes adds up. If you make enough good decisions before you know it you have overhauled your diet for the better.

I am telling you this because I suspect many of you think I am much more of a dietary zealot than I think I am. Yes I eat a very clean diet. But I am also a realist and know that most people don’t want to eat the way that we do. If it weren’t the cancer I can’t say for certain that we would eat this healthfully either. ;-) All you need to do is go back and look at my recipes from one year ago and you will see that my diet has changed quite a bit in just a year. There used to be frequent recipes with whole wheat pizza, whole wheat pasta, seitan and oil just a year ago.

I hope this encourages you that you can change your diet and it really doesn’t take long for your taste buds to adapt. If you had told me a year ago our diet would be this clean I would have thought you were crazy. But now I am looking for ways to make it even cleaner. I have not completely decided what that means yet. When I do I will let you know. ;-)


Today I wasn’t really feeling like anything in particular so I just combined things that were leftover in the refrigerator. As you know if it weren’t for my intentional leftovers we would starve (or be forced to eat unhealthy food). We had a bit of the green bean dish from last night left which I strained so it was not too juicy on the plate. Then I tossed a ¼ of a roasted acorn squash in the dressing from the green beans to give it a hint of flavor. I also strained that. I added a dollop of Spanish flavored hummus and a few sliced almonds for the green beans and that was lunch. Nothing fancy but full of many colors which means a variety or vitamins and nutrients which you know makes me happy.

Hate and Love:

Have you ever noticed how casually people will toss around the word hate? I hate this, or I hate it when someone says this or does that? Really? I have a visceral reaction when I read anything that uses the word hate. I didn’t realize that until earlier today. I think hate should be reserved for the most heinous things we might encounter not little every day things. Additionally since I was thinking about this topic I realized that there are actually very things that I personally hate. Sure there are things I don’t like but hate is a word I reserve for atrocities. Since I had my little epiphany regarding hate today I am going to be very mindful of my casual use of the word going forward.

Are there any words that you have an immediate negative reaction to? I have many other words that bug me but those are typically words used to describe an entire group of people (like queer…*ugh*… that word makes my skin crawl). There seems to be a pattern to what bugs me which is when people try to draw a line between people. I just don’t think that is necessary personally.

Since I started on hate I thought we should end with love. There are so many things that I love I thought I would list a few. I hope that causes you to think of things you love too. Here is my list:

I love my husband, our felines, my friends, and our life. There are so many things I could list like cool crisp fall weather or newly fallen pine cones (a current favorite). I could have said the first snow of the season or the first flowers in spring. There are so many things to be grateful for everyday if you just look for them. Today I am loving the wonderful cool weather and nice breeze we are having. I am also enjoying having the windows open and airing out my house. It was wonderful to not have any back pain today. Seriously isn’t always better to focus on the positives rather than what we don’t like? ;-)


Isn’t this little guy or girl pretty? I have no idea what type this little beauty is but when he attached himself to the outside screen I wanted to take a picture and this was the best I could get. Anybody know what type of butterfly this is?

Afternoon Snack:

For my afternoon snack I five of my baked falafel from the freezer with 2 tablespoons of salsa. I like to eat my snacks on a appetizer plate and use an appetizer fork because it always makes them seem more substantial. Yes I am a little nutty that way.

One thing I have noticed is that it takes me a while for food to seem to register with my brain, or maybe I should say to register with my stomach. I have found that if I have a small snack when I get hungry and then wait 20 minutes before going back for more at least half the time when the timer signals time is up I am not hungry.  Yes I actually set a time for 20 minutes and wait until it rings to get more food.  No OCD here, LOL. I think most of us were conditioned to eat huge portions of food from eating in restaurants. Those gigantic portions have led most of us to over eat.

Another trick I have is to split things with my hubby. When we go out to eat we normally order an appetizer, which we share. Then we order an entrée and share that too. If we are still hungry we will get a veggie side dish to split. In the past we would have ordered and eaten much more food. However since we started to focus more on eating until we were 80% full we have difficulty eating a large volume of food unless it is salad. For some reason those go down easy. ;-)

When I am out without Dan I order a big salad for myself and let that be my meal. I usually have some nuts or dried fruit with me that I can add to the salad if I think it needs something. Most restaurants have a green salad on the menu with fruit and nut now. By having them hold the cheese and adding some nuts and dried fruit from my bag a salad can be very filling.

Bill Clinton Eats Mostly Vegan? What?:

Did you see this? I was shocked. Looks like Dr. Esselstyn, Fuhrman or McDougall has gotten through to either Chelsea or Bill Clinton. Given his love of McDonalds I have to say this blew me away. I hope this gets some mainstream press.

Dinner: An unusual salad

I was missing salad so that is what we had for dinner tonight. This version is another one of those crazy versions that comes from somewhere deep in my brain where many wild ideas originate. ;-) Here is what I made tonight:

Sweet and Savory Asian Inspired Salad
Serves 2


¼ cup walnuts
¼ cup water
1 lime, juiced
liquid aminos, to taste ( I used about a ¼ teaspoon)
sriracha, to taste (I used about ½ teaspoon)
6 cups spring mix
1 ½ cups grapes, sliced in half
½ carrot, thinly sliced on a mandoline
1 radish, thinly sliced on a mandoline
¼ cup mint leaves, julienned
1 tablespoon sliced toasted almonds


Combine the walnuts, water, and lime juice and process until smooth. Add liquid aminos and sriracha to taste. You want the dressing to be a little thick and spicy with just enough sodium to round out the flavor.

Place the greens on two plates and top each with ½ the dressing. Top the greens with the grapes, carrot and radish. Finish the salad with mint and almonds.

Nutritional Information:

Amount Per Serving
Calories - 237.7
Calories From Fat (43%) - 102.9

Total Fat - 12.3g
Saturated Fat - 1.15g
Cholesterol - 0mg
Sodium - 100.75mg
Potassium - 697.84mg
Total Carbohydrates - 31.36g
Fiber - 5.8g
Sugar - 19.79g
Protein - 6.11g


This salad is crunchy, bitter, sweet, and savory. I love the hit of mint from the salad. I firmly believe that salads do not need to boring and this is the perfect example of that fact. Mango would bout a good substitute for the grapes or an addition to them. Radish was added for bitterness. Carrot and almonds provided the crunch. Lime juice was added to the dressing to cut through the fat of the walnuts and brighten the flavor. Sriracha was included because I like a bit of background heat. Mint is a huge flavor element in this salad and one that I think is essential. As you can tell I really liked this salad. ;-)

Signing out:

That is going to be all for me today.  I loved the look of these clouds.  Beauty is every where if you are open to it.  I hope you al lhave a good evening. Talk to again tomorrow.


Thank you all for the anniversary wishes!  It was very kind of you and greatly appreciated. Good night. :-)


  1. Lovely, informative post! Your lunch plate was the winner for me. Healthy and beautiful.

    I read the news about B. Clinton, too. I saw him on the Jon Stewart shoe. He looks amazing!

    I think we all have to look at out diet as "in progress" There are so many variables (travel, work, etc) that can get in the way. But if we have a strong foundation it helps make better choices and form new habits.

  2. I'm happy to be waking up to 72 degrees - feels downright cold after the summer we've had. I hope you have a great Saturday with continued great weather. Maybe you and Dan can enjoy sometime together outdoors.

  3. JL,

    Thanks JL for your kind words. I enjoyed my lunch yesterday. Can you tell I would starve without my selection of intentional leftovers? ;-)

    The news about Bill Clinto blew me away. I am really hoping this makes the mainstream news. It would do so much for society to hear him talk about managing heart disease with diet.

    I agree with you completely that our diets are all a work in process. Your point about having a strong foundation was excellent. That has been key for me as well.

    enjoy your weekend,

  4. Heather,

    Glad to hear you are finally getting some relief from the heat. I agree that the mornings do feel cold compared to what we have gotten used to. ;-)

    I hope you and Jason have a great weekend too. Happy Birthday to Jason!


  5. Hey Ali! Tried green tea in the smoothie today...didn't ruin the taste (I don't love the flavor green tea so much). I teach preschoolers and when they say they hate something, I reply with, "Oh, you don't love when he does that?" to replace "hate". A friend of mine sensitized me to the word "starving". Kids and people often say they are starving, meaning they are hungry. But most of us don't even know "starving", and hopefully never will.
    : )

  6. Stephanie,

    I didn't always love green tea either. It seems to be an acquired taste. ;-) For Dan I used to make his half green tea and half earl grey until he grew to enjoy it. You may want to try that or some other tea you like. You can also add a little fruit juice which also seems to make it more palatable.

    I am so glad I am not the only one that reacts to the word hate. It seems far too powerful for me. How wonderful that you are trying to teach little ones be mindful of the power of language. Good for you!

    Excellent point about the use of the word starving! Most Americans rarely feel hunger let alone starvation. I am guilty of saying that I am starving too *hangs head* but now I be mindful of that. :-) Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

    I hope you are enjoying your Saturday,

  7. Haha--when I was growing up if I ever said "I hate _____" my mom would immediately say "hate is a very strong word, Courtney..." I haven't thought of that in years--thanks for the reminder :-)


  8. Courtney,

    I like your mom's style. ;-) We should all have had a mom like her.


  9. I'm the same way when friends tell me they're trying to eat healthier! My diet is most definitely one in progress. . . probably for the rest of my life! ;) And I love your attitude about finding positive things in our lives. . . far too often, we focus on the negative.

  10. Ricki,

    Thanks for letting me know I am not alone. I was on the phone with a friend today that told me they are going to eat at least one salad every day and no after dinner snacking. I was practically doing the happy dance when I got off the phone. Every little bit helps I think. ;-)

    It is too easy to look for the negative since it is everywhere. In fact I am on a news fast at the moment since I don't need any additional "bad news" in my life. Humans seem to like to wallow in the bad stuff. What is up with that? *shakes head*

    hope you are having a wonderful weekend,

  11. In reading your responses, I see that Courtney's mom says the thing my father would tell me: hate is such a strong word. Along those lines, lame and retarded also irk me. Otherwise, I giggle to myself when people misuse words thinking those extra syllables make them sound important. (utilize these records, if you have questions come see myself) I say I giggle about these grammatical problems because I want to keep an open mind to the idea the person is trying to present rather than dismissing someone as stupid because of a grammatical error.

    I'm also always happy to hear about people improving their diets, especially when it shows that a veg diet is more than pasta and french fries. Thanks for the link on Clinton. I'm also a proponent of Meatless Monday even when it's not a complete change.

  12. I'm reading your latest recipe for a smoothie and just noticed that you always use frozen bananas. Is this a convenience issue or do you find they mix better if frozen first? Thanks,

  13. Jill,

    I use frozen bananas so I don't need to use ice in the smoothie. That way the overall flavor doesn't get diluted by the water. They are convenient too though. ;-)


  14. Jessica,

    I find that people casually use words that are inflammatory far too often. This is one of those things that always makes me shake my head. I agree with you on the words you mentioned.

    Glad to hear I am not the only one that gets excited when people make small changes. It seems to me that change starts with a single decision so we should celebrate those early steps. ;-)


  15. that looks so delicious! Now i have to decide between this and an egg tahini salad recipe i found for hard to choose!!

  16. Whitney,

    The tahini salad dressing sounds good too. You can use any nuts or seeds in salad dressing in place of oil. I use walnuts most often because they have the best omega 3 to 6 ratio but they all work. Raw cashews make a very effective creamy dressing base. Thanks for introducing me to a new site.



Related Posts with Thumbnails