Friday, November 28, 2014

One Degree of Change #5

One Degree of Change #5

 The entry way to our front door looks like we decorated for the holidays with Monarch butterfly chrysalises! They are on the walls, hanging from the gutters, on the hose reel, adorning the silver palm and on the backs of the Adirondack chairs on the deck.   When I first discovered the "star" caterpillar selecting our front door for it's transformation, I savored the opportunity to be a spectator.  I took this picture in the morning and with in two hours the first stages had already taken place.  And by noon the chrysalis was complete.  Note the detail, it appears to have gold beading around the top rim.  All of this happened from that tiny caterpillar eating quality nutrition, in just the precise quantity for just the precise amount of time. 

#5 Clean out your cabinets & refrigerator of all foods containing the ingredient: TRANS FATTY ACIDS/TRANS FATS!

Another simple task you might think, but food manufacturers have hidden this dangerous ingredient in those processed foods you "think" you love.  Why should you worry about TFA's? Here are the facts:
  • Trans fat is double trouble for your heart health
  • Trans fat raises your LDL ("bad") cholesterol and lowers your HDL ("good") cholesterol.
  • A high LDL cholesterol level in combination with a low HDL cholesterol level increases your risk of heart disease, the leading killer of men and women.
  • If the fatty deposits (formed by the build up of LDL) within your arteries tear or rupture, a blood clot may form and block blood flow to a part of your heart, causing a heart attack, or to a part of your brain, causing a stroke.
  •  It’s also associated with a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
Why is it so dangerous? Well, trans fat is formed through an industrial process that adds hydrogen to vegetable oil, which causes the oil to become solid at room temperature.  The chemical make up is distorted changing the way the bonds are formed. It's like taking your leg and putting it where your arm is supposed to be and vice versa.  It's just not right.  These trans fats have to be heated to extreme temperatures before they boil.  Think about this, your body temperature averages 98.6 degrees (F), your body temp will never get high enough to burn those fats out of your system. Your body can't process the trans fats, so they build up around your heart and are deposited around your abdomen and thighs. 

Here are a list of your local suspects:
The hidden name for Trans Fats is partially hydrogenated oil.
  • Baked goods: cakes, cookies, pie crusts and crackers
  • Ready made frosting
  • Potato, corn and tortilla chips
  • Microwave popcorn
  • Fried foods: donuts, French fries, fried chicken
  • Refrigerator dough: biscuits, cinnamon rolls, pizza dough
  • Non dairy creamer
  • Margarine
  • Salad dressings
  • Peanut butter
  • Gravy in a jar
What's in your wallet, I mean, cabinet?  Shocking, isn't it! And the FDA lets manufacturers put "ZERO TRANS FATS" legally on the label. In the U.S. if a food has less than 0.5 grams of trans fat in a serving, the food label can read 0 grams trans fat. Read your labels, people!

The holiday season is here! Make great selections, read your labels and feed your body with nutrient rich and fiber dense foods. Now that you know better, you have to do better!

Here is my easy and quick recipe for
They still have calories, but no trans fats or high fructose corn syrup!

Friday, November 21, 2014

One Degree of Change #4

The tiny caterpillar beginning it's one degree of change!

One Degree of Change #4

Inspired by watching the caterpillars begin their transformation, I couldn't stop thinking about how tiny changes can make a difference in our quality of life.  I counsel and coach my patients everyday attempting to inspire and motivate them to take care of the amazing machine we call "our human body".  The small egg that hatches becoming that caterpillar, who knows exactly what to eat and how much to eat to grow to the exact size for the next transformation.  I have watched the tiniest caterpillar, within days of hatching, devour the milkweed and grow to 300 times its original size.  And that is how nature works.  It is my patients that I watch devour foods that are not good for them and they grow by 10-50 lbs.!  That is not an act of nutrition but an act of self destruction.

#4 Clean out your refrigerator door of all foods with the ingredient: HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP
I know this sounds so simple and unassuming, but here are just some of the facts:
  • The average American consumes 65 lbs. of HFCS per year (mostly in sodas).
  • Sugar in any form is the leading cause of Type II Diabetes, Obesity and Heart Disease.
  • HFCS consists of glucose and fructose, not in a 50-50 ratio, but a 55-45 fructose to glucose ratio in an unbound form.
  • High Fructose Corn Syrup is sweeter than glucose.
  • HFCS is cheaper than sugar because of the government farm bill corn subsidies.
  • HFCS goes right to the liver and triggers lipogenesis (the production of fats like triglycerides and cholesterol) this is why it is the major cause of liver damage in this country and causes a condition called “fatty liver” which affects 70 million people.
  • HFCS contains contaminants including mercury that are not regulated or measured by the FDA.
  • HFCS is almost always a marker of poor-quality, nutrient-poor disease-creating industrial food products or “food-like substances”. 

So why would you even want to put this in your mouth?  So here is your challenge.  Open your refrigerator and look at the food items that are just in your door.  Read the labels. The products that will be suspicious are:
  • ketchup
  • salad dressings 
  • pickles
  • pickle relish
  • pancake syrup
  • jellies and preserves
  • sodas
  • juices
A jar of sweet pickles
with a picture of a stork!
What did you find in your door? Don't balk at throwing something out because it is unopened or half consumed.  Empty the container and recycle it.  Don't make that mistake again.  The loss of money from throwing away those foods will be made up in less money spent on your healthcare for diabetes, obesity and heart disease in the future.

So to honor your initiative to clean out your fridge, I cleaned out mine to make a meal (No HFCS in my fridge)!  I did my own version of the "Chopped" TV show.  In my basket were four boneless, skinless, organic chicken breasts, a box of organic chicken stock, 1/2 a container of coconut milk, a head of cauliflower, two large cloves of garlic, a whole yellow onion, 1/2 a red pepper, 1/2 a bottle of Iguana Jalapeño sauce and some green onions and fresh cilantro.  So what did I create?

Dr. B's Paleo White Chicken Chili
with coconut flour biscuits!
Dr. B's Paleo White Chicken Chili

  • 1.5 - 2 lbs. boneless, skinless, organic chicken breast, cut into bite size pieces
  • 1 Tb. I used cayenne chili pepper infused olive oil, or regular olive oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • ½ red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 -2 jalapeños, seeded and diced or I used a ½ a small bottle of Jalapeno sauce
  • 2 cloves of elephant garlic or 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 1 Tb. ground cumin
  • 4 cups organic chicken broth
  • 1 small head of cauliflower, broken into very small pieces to simulate cannellini beans
  • ½ cup thick canned coconut milk (unsweetened)
  • 1/3 cup of corn grits (ground with the milling blade & my Nutribullet), masa or arrowroot powder
  • Chopped green onions and cilantro for garnish
  1. Chop the chicken and veggies. Then place a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the oil, onions, peppers, jalapeño, and garlic.
  2. Sauté for 5 minutes, then add ½ of the diced chicken, salt and spices. Sauté another 5-8 minutes, until the chicken is nearly cooked through.
  3. In the crockpot add the broth, the remainder of the chicken, cauliflower, and coconut milk. Whisk in the ground grits, masa or arrowroot powder and bring to a boil.
  4. Lower the heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Then take a potato masher (or ladle) and smash the chicken pieces to shreds. Serve topped with green onions and cilantro.
Note: Feel free to add 2 cans (drained) of white beans instead of the cauliflower, if you aren't on a paleo diet (or don’t know what it is?!).
Now clean out that refrigerator!


Friday, November 14, 2014

One Degree of Change #3

One Degree of Change #3

Feasting on milkweed!
My home is a fascinating place.  I have surrounded myself with the wonders of nature.  One of my many pleasures is my butterfly garden.  It greets you as you come to the front door.  The garden is made up of a majestic silver palm or bismarkia nobilis which stands guard over the area.  Bulbinia, red salvia and a bleeding heart vine have the beautiful flowers which provide the nectar to attract the butterflies.  Then it is necessary to provide a host plant, in this case it is milkweed.  The host plant is the restaurant for the caterpillars.  The Monarch butterfly is so attracted to these flowers.  She then lays eggs on the underside of the leaves of the milkweed.  Upon hatching the caterpillars grow quickly and devour the milkweed.  Within a few days they are the size of your pinky finger.  At that point they will travel up to 30 feet from the host plant and begin the process of forming the chrysalis.  It is the caterpillar's one degree of change on a daily basis that brings about the transformation.  It is simply mesmerizing, or should I say metamorphosing!

#3: Eat out only 15 times a month, or less!    Wha-wha-whaaaat? Yes, I said that and meant it.  We have 60-90 meals per month.  Eating out only 3-4 times a week may seem drastic to many people.  Calculate how many times you eat in a restaurant. Now calculate the cost of each meal including tip.  You could save a small fortune!  In our household we eat in a restaurant 3-4 times a week.  We usually select a local restaurant and enjoy food that we would not normally prepare at home.  We go out for sushi or Thai food and an occasional lunch or breakfast.  Most of the time the meals we prepare at home are more nutritious and we can be sure of the ingredients.

To maintain your one degree of change of creating a new you, decide to create more meals at home.  Make it a family event.  Create healthy menus, make it fun to shop and share the kitchen chores.  Make the meals colorful with plenty of organic vegetables.  Challenge the household to come up with unique meal presentations.  Prepare a favorite food that you usually eat when you go out and make it healthy.  Try gluten free or vegan recipes. Take heirloom/family recipes and make a healthier version by substituting a more conscious choice of ingredients.  Explore the web, the internet is a great source for finding recipes. 

Our front door caterpillar!
Chrysalis formed on our Silver Palm!
These are photos of my future Monarch butterflies.  I counted twelve caterpillars beginning the cocooning process.  And we have more that are still on the milkweed. We even have one who decided our front door was the perfect location! We are looking forward to our kaleidoscope of butterflies! Here is a short video that show the process of transformation!
Just a miniscule change every few hours changes a caterpillar into an extraordinary chrysalis. 

        What will your change look like?

Saturday, November 8, 2014

One Degree of Change #2

This morning, another crisp, clear morning that makes a great start for the day.  In the gym at 4:30 and on the road by 5:15, a.m. that is. Also the pleasure of seeing a spectacular full moon.  I love when the moon is so full and so bright that I cast a shadow, I guess that's how the song "Moon Shadow" was inspired!  Now you can't get that tune out of your head (that is called an "earworm").  At least I didn't talk about the song, "It's a Small World"! 

To continue with the 100 degrees of change, I present another opportunity to move toward your one degree of change.

#2  Join a CO-OP. This is a great way to follow up with the #1 Degree of Change of eating local.  I gave you a few locations last time, but I want to make it as easy as possible. 

If you live in the Golden Triangle area (Eustis, Mount Dora, Tavares/Leesburg) I would suggest Lake County's Veggie-Table.  You can go to Facebook and look up Lake County's Veggie-Table (or just click on the link).  The cost is $8 for your bin.  You can email Sherri Owen to get on her email list. Your name will be added to the next list which comes out 2xs a month, the 1st & 3rd Friday. When you get it, order produce by Monday night! Pickup your produce on Thursday's between 10:30 & 1:30, in the Eustis/Mt.Dora area. There are no yearly membership fees. There is a one-time bin fee of $8 for the purpose of purchasing a bin for your produce. You are able to buy that when you place your first order.  Take your reusable grocery bags to pick up your produce.

Another choice for Lake County residents of Leesburg and Tavares is Lee Farms and they have a Facebook page: Lee Farms Webster.  You have a choice of a Fruit Basket, Large Family Basket and a Small Family Basket.  Each one gives you the choice of a Farmer's choice or a Traditional Choice.  It is a pay as you go and very affordable.  There are delivery options and pick up options.

For those of you that live in Orlando/Winter Park, you are very lucky.  You have so many more choices.  I will give you two options, but don't limit it to these.  Google local co-ops and you can see what is the most convenient for you.  Your first choice is Orlando Organics.  They are a family-owned and operated organic produce home delivery service. They have been in business since June 2002. They are not a co-op or a buying club, nor are they a retail store or a CSA farm. They exist solely as a delivery service. You sign up for a subscription of organic produce, choosing one of our primary produce options, and they deliver that produce to your home weekly or biweekly (every other week). (Unfortunately, they do not deliver to offices or business addresses.)
The contents of each of these bags change from week to week and are based on seasonal availability, what they get the best price on, and are based on their goal of supplying you with a varied selection of fruits and vegetables every delivery. They get their produce from organic farms all over the country. They try and obtain locally and regionally grown produce whenever possible.

Your second option for the Orlando area is Homegrown Co-op.  They have a store front on Orange Avenue between Florida Hospital and Princeton Avenue.  Their online market is reserved for  members, but you are able to make two trial orders to test the market. After your third order you will be auto-charged $45 for a subscription annual membership. You do not have to be a Member of the Cooperative shop in the retail store, however most items are marked up a small percentage.
These surcharge monies will simply go to pay but a portion of Federal Income Tax the Cooperative is liable for with all non-members using their service. Wouldn’t you feel better with them using that money right here in Central Florida to create more jobs, while saving green space and creating identifiable culture for our region?  If you are planning to make more than $400 in purchases throughout the year (that’s only $33.33 per month), you should consider Membership, because at only $400 in local food patronage your non-member surcharges will equal an annual dues payment.
Membership costs are as follows:
$45 yearly for 5 years
$200 lifetime
$4.35 a month for 60 months (5 Years)

Now you have no excuses.  Two simple options for the two areas of my offices.  This is about community and community support.  I love community.  This morning I had the opportunity to speak to a group of Fleet Feet runners preparing for half and full marathons in December and January.  My speaking venue was an open courtyard between Panera's and Peach Valley Café.  I had the privilege of speaking to these athletes who just finished running 10 -12 miles.  There were also people  walking about and others were casual observers on the trail, all stopping to listen.  It brings me great pleasure to teach about eating well.  Maybe it made a one degree of change for someone in that courtyard!

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Another Degree of Change

Waking up to an extra hour of sleep and a chilly fall morning on a beautiful Sunday morning. Talking about one degree of change, this morning represents several degrees of change, as in temperature.  Just like the change in temperature, it brings change.  We pull out sweatshirts, sweatpants and put away the flip flops.  We have an extra cup of hot coffee or tea to take the chill off.  And we make a big crock pot of veggie soup.  We have a change in wardrobe, routine and foods that we eat, all because of a few degrees of change in outside temperature. What if you would consider a one degree of change in your life?

Last week we traveled by car to upstate New York to pick up a friend who has congestive heart failure to bring her back to her Florida home.  It was a dead head trip on the way up.  Sleep five hours then switch and drive five hours.  We made it in 16.5 hours.  That gave us a day and a half to enjoy the fall beauty and vineyards of the region before heading home.  Because our friend is only able to travel for so many hours in a day due to the possibility of complications from her condition, we broke the trip up into two days on the way back.  As I was enjoying the fall beauty during the trip as a passenger, I was inspired to make a list of 100 degrees of change.  It started out as a list of 25, which turned into 50 and slowed to a total of 87 degrees of change!  Well you can't stop at an uneven number, at least I couldn't, so it became a list of 100 degrees of change.  My inspiration was drawn from my own personal changes and ones that I would like to incorporate in my life.

Drawing from this list and saving you from having to be creative, my mission is to demonstrate how easy it is to make one degree of change!  Twice a week, I will give you two ideas to select as your one degree of change.

1. Eat local within a 10 mile radius.  You will have a better chance of eating organic if you select local produce.  In our neighborhood we have several choices: in Lake County @veggie table of lake county. @give organics. @leesburg herb shoppe. All can be found on Facebook.  Google in your area for a local organic choice of produce!  Here is a website that will let you search your community for organic co-ops:

Take the challenge! Now to enjoy my fresh veggie soup!  Here's the recipe:

 Dr. B's "Clean Out the Frig" Veggie Soup

Get out the Crock pot, start the soup first thing in the morning.

1 quart chicken stock (I had some frozen that I had made)
1 can organic roasted tomatoes with garlic (BPA free can)
1 large organic sweet potato, cubed with skin
1 large organic beet, cubed
1 head of broccoli, chopped including stalk
1 large yellow onion, chopped & sauteed in organic butter
1 cup chopped organic carrots
1/2 large red pepper, chopped
1 pint of grape tomatoes (whole)
1/2 bag of organic baby spinach
leftover crumbles of cheezy kale chips (cleaned out the cabinet too! :-)
1 Tbsp of granulated garlic, I was out of fresh garlic!
1 Tbsp of Turmeric
1/2 tsp Curry powder
1 tsp of red pepper flakes (optional)
Himalayan salt to taste

Turn the crock pot on high.  Add chicken stock and can of tomatoes.  Chop the onion and saute in organic butter till clear, while chopping the rest of the veggies.  Put everything in the crock pot and bring to boil.  Turn heat down to simmer or warm. Season to taste and enjoy! We grated fresh Parmesan on top!  Remember you can use any veggies.  These were veggies that were leftovers in our refrigerator.