Wednesday, June 29, 2016

5 Minute Energy Balancing Routine




Got 5 minutes? You can align your energy for better focus, concentration and creativity. 

Years ago, I took a weekend energy balancing workshop with Donna Eden at the Institute in Rye in upstate New York. The 3 day class was an in-depth course, and I learned a lot about energy, energy balancing for greater mental focus, and energy techniques for stress management.

At the time, I was a high school teacher,  teaching very bright high school students who had ADD and ADHD.  I was interested in the course to see how this energy work might be applied to helping my students with focus, concentration and relaxation. Donna Eden suggested a simple daily routine of energy balancing exercises to help bring your body back into balance and prepare for mental work!

The routine was easy and when I shared it with my students, some of found the exercises helpful. ( I think they also like the opportunity to have a physical activity to do in the class and a short break for sitting still).

The other day I was perusing Pinterest ( one of my favorite activities), and I came across a post entitled, "5-minute daily routine: Super Brain Yoga - a Donna Eden short version - on YouTube" 

Naturally I was curious to see the routine and sure enough, it was a short video demonstration of a few of the simple techniques that I had previously learned ( and had forgotten about) made into a video featuring those very techniques into a quick 5 minute morning routine exercise. 

I'm so glad I found it because it reminded me how helpful simple energy balancing exercises can be and how easy it is to do a few little exercises each morning upon rising, or as a break when stressed ,or when doing long hours of desk or computer work.

I'm going to add these simple techniques back into my morning routine- 
Do you want to join me? 

Once I have the routine down and I can do it without watching the video,  I like to play yoga or spa music in the background while doing it. Music is a great balancer for me as well.  Below this Youtube video, I also included Donna Eden's routine.

Here is the video



A few days later, I  found a Youtube by Donna Eden that explains each exercise better plus the whys and hows. She also gives 2 additional morning exercises! 




In addition, here is a link to Donna's book


Monday, June 27, 2016

Black Beans Make a Great Summer Salad






Looking for a quick but satisfying summer salad that can serve as lunch or a light dinner?

My black bean salad is one of our favorites. It's light but filling and packs lots of fiber, nutrients, and taste. The best part is that it can be ready in under 10 minutes. 

I use organic canned beans for convenience and simply chop up some juicy summer tomatoes, sweet red onion, fresh summer basil, and avocado. When I have left over rice, I add that in as well. Splashed with freshly squeezed lime, this salad looks pretty and tastes delicious. Just assemble and serve.



This is also a great recipe to bring to a pot luck or BBQ since it is delicious at room temperature too. It travels well or can be assembled when you get to your get together. Simply make a container of beans and the rice and another container of the salad. Mix when you get there. I will be bringing this to a woman's meet up that I belong too. It's easy and economical, so it's perfect for a larger crowd. I just double the recipe.





Author: Judee Algazi @ Gluten Free A-Z Blog
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: None
Serves: 6

Ingredients: 
2 organic cans of black beans, drained and rinsed
3 summer or vine ripe tomatoes, chopped
4 large sprigs of fresh basil , chopped
1/2 red onion, chopped
1 medium Haas avocado, diced
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lime or lemon juice
1 teaspoon of ground cumin
Himalayan salt to taste
Optional: 2 cups leftover cooked rice or quinoa
Optional: 1 cup of chopped red pepper

Directions 
Drain and wash beans. Combine with everything except the avocado. Add the diced avocado to each plate just before serving. If there are leftovers, do not add avocado to the leftovers as it will get very dark.






Friday, June 24, 2016

Why I eat Celery Every Day


What's all the fuss about celery ?
I recently visited the website of Anthony Williams. He is a medical medium who gives nutritional advice on Hay House Radio. He says that celery is one of the vegetables that can help alkalize and mineralize your body- so it's great for healing what ails you. Many sources say that disease doesn't like to live in an alkaline environment- and guess what celery creates? ( alkalinity) . For healing, he recommends a large glass of organic celery juice daily and drank on an empty stomach first thing in the morning.

My morning juice

Celery is a Part of my Morning Juice
I've always included organic celery in my morning fresh vegetable juice.
I use carrots, celery, cucumber, beet, romaine lettuce, parsley, kale. I switch around greens as each green offers a different benefit. Sometimes I use collard greens instead of kale or butter leaf lettuce instead of romaine lettuce, cilantro instead of parsley. In addition, I recently started adding green sprouts. Anthony Williams says that the tender butter leaf lettuce is offers a lot of nutrients.

Although I had always used celery, I never really knew until reading his blog that it has such value. Some other sources say that celery can help improve one's overall health since it contains significant amounts of water which are full of minerals and vitamins. Read my post on getting more energy from juicing 


Have arthritis? 
Celery is also an anti-inflammatory 
In addition, celery is felt to fight inflammation and reduce joint swelling which may be of benefit for anyone suffering from arthritis or gout. It also contains many antioxidants and flavanoids as well as phthlides, and coumarin that are all key in the prevention of disease. I also didn't know that celery provides a substantial amount of Vitamin C as well. 

Celery is Low Calorie but adds fiber, flavor and crunch to soup, salads, stuffings, and entrees.

In addition, Celery is low calorie and low carb but high in fiber. This mildly flavorful light green vegetable is a welcome addition to soups, salads, stuffings, and entrees. Since celery is also low in calories, fiber and carbohydrates, it makes a perfect food for those wishing to lose weight. Its high in fluid makes it helpful to keep you hydrated as well. 

Have you ever had celery stuffed with peanut butter? Great vegan and gluten free Snack!!! 

Why I buy only organic celery

Celery is on the dirty dozen list for foods that have the highest amount of pesticides. Therefore it is one of the foods that I always buy organic.

Strawberries are the #1 Dirtiest with the heaviest pesticides!

The following list gives you the foods that are recommended to purchase organic because of their high pesticide exposure. 



Want to know about the Clean 15 List  which are the foods that get the least pesticide exposure and are safer to buy if not organic? Read Clean 15

Do you like celery? Do you buy organic? What is your favorite way to use celery?

Try some of my vegan and gluten free soup recipes that contain celery- I usually add celery to most of my soup recipes. Because of it high liquid content it imparts a nice flavor to the soup.  Remember all of my soups are fast and easy to make! 
 I feel like I should start making  celery soup! Anyone have a good recipe?

This post will be linked to my blog carnival list  of blog parties with lots of shared recipes.

Monday, June 20, 2016

Grain Free Veggie Burgers with Grilled Pineapple


There is something about summer that calls for burgers even if you are a vegetarian.
These grain free vegan burgers are a delicious way to fortify your diet and enjoy a tasty meat-free alternative this summer. They are made from garbanzo beans which are packed with fiber, protein, and valuable nutrients. In addition, I've added high fiber chia seeds, walnuts, fresh and dried spices, and chopped vegetables.( see my post on the amazing benefits of chia seeds)

Easy to Make 

I popped everything into the food processor , made the mixture into patties, then baked the patties in the oven! This vegan recipe will make at least 8 hearty burgers for your summertime enjoyment.



3 Ways I Eat Them

I eat my burgers on a plate topped with tomato, avocado, scallions, and lemon juice

  • Bean dishes are very popular in Mediterranean countries, and the Mediterranean diet is touted for being one of the healthiest in the world.These burgers can be eaten by themselves or
  • Topped with chopped avocado, tomato, lemon juice and scallions 
  • between two firm Romaine lettuce leaves like a Romaine Sandwich 
  • If you are not concerned with the grain, then get yourself a tasty gluten free hamburger roll and add your burger with toppings of your choice.

I use romaine lettuce leaves to make a sandwich- I place them together
Yesterday I was at a family Father's Day BBQ- I brought my own grain free veggie burger and romaine lettuce leaves. The hosts served grilled pineapple slices, so I made myself a sandwich using my lettuce leaves. ( this is a great sandwich solution for those who are gluten free, those on a low carb diet and those on a low calorie diet!

I like making my own veggie burgers for these reasons: 
  1. Gluten Free/grain free veggie burgers are hard to find
  2. My recipe is high in fiber and healthy nutrient packed ingredients
  3. It's more economical
  4. It's easy to make 
It's fun to find ways to add healthier ingredients like chia seeds to your diet!
Beans, nuts, chia seeds, and vegetables are definitely a good choice and this is one delicious way to eat them!

Author: Judee Algazi from Gluten Free A-Z Blog
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Serves: 8 hearty burgers

Ingredients: 
1 can chick peas, washed and drained
1 can white beans, washed and drained
1/4 of fresh mint
1/4 cup of fresh basil
1/4 cup chopped scallions
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
2 tablespoons chia seeds
1/4 cup red pepper
2 cloves garlic sauteed with the onion
1/4 cup red onion, sauteed in olive oil
1/4 cup chopped celery, sauteed with the red onion
1 tablespoon of fresh lemon juice
1 teapsoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon of Trader Joe's 21 Salute ( or Mrs. Dash or the likes)
Himalayan salt to taste

Directions

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Saute the garlic, onions, and celery in a teaspoon of olive oil until they begin to soften and set aside.
Add to the food processor: , the fresh mint, basil, scallions, sauteed onion, celery, and garlic, 21 Salute, cumin, lemon juice, chia seeds, walnuts and salt. Pulse on and off until mixture becomes somewhat blended. Add the chick peas and beans and process until smooth. Remove from processor and make 8-10 patties  1/2 cup patties ( measure in a 1/2 cup measuring cup) flatten and place on a large cookie sheet covered with parchment paper and generously prayed with olive oil. Bake for 15 minutes and then turn. Bake for another 10 minutes until firm on both sides. Eat immediately or if you are going to refrigerate or freeze them, allow to cool somewhat before removing from tray. Remove and store.
Before Baking 
Use the Romaine lettuce as bread and make a romaine sandwich. Put the two halves together and enjoy!

My Notes: 
1. You can leave out the walnuts and the recipe if concerned about nut allergies

Shared on my blog carnivals including  Meatless Mondays,

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Zucchini Noodles ( Zoodles) and Purple Cabbage in a heavenly ginger sauce






gluten free zucchini pasta with purple cabbage

When I was growing up, one of my favorite dishes was cabbage and buttered noodles. I remember it being so tasty, but in retrospect perhaps not so healthy. I Love pasta but hate the empty carbohydrates and calories of even gluten free pasta. That's why I make zoodles- which are simply sculpted zucchini- made with a simple tool called a sprializer.

Zoodles can be substituted for pasta in any recipe and that's what I used in my zoodles & purple cabbage in ginger sauce. In order to make the zoodles in seconds, you will need to use a spiralizer. This is the one I use and like this style the best. I've tried the cheaper ones that you hold in your hand, but they just don't work for me since I make so much.


This Simple Tool is Amazing

The "spiralizer"turns zucchini or any hard vegetable ( beets, cucumber, sweet potato, kohlrabi) into what looks like spaghetti.

Spiralizers like the one I use run about $29.00 but they are so so so worth it. I use mine at least twice a week and more in the summer. I bought this one: Spiralizer By Palermo- Voted the Best Vegetable Maker, 

a tool called a spiralizer


Spiralizers are really easy to use. I just place a medium zucchini in the spindle and manually turn - out will come beautiful strands of noodle like zucchini that has the texture and kind of the taste of pasta when sauteed.

zucchini flowing from a spiralizer


I make all kinds of zoodle recipes. Previously I made zoodles in Pesto Sauce and Skinny pasta zoodles with onions and garlic 

This time I made a delicious and easy recipe that combined braised purple cabbage with my zucchini noodles. Not only was it beautifully colorful, it was healthy and exceptionally tasty.

Author: Judee Algazi @ gluten free A-Z Blog
Prep Time: 5-8 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Serves:

Ingredients:
1 medium zucchini
1 cup of purple cabbage, chopped
1 clove garlic, peeled and chopped
1 knob of fresh ginger, peeled and grated
olive oil spray
21 Salute ( Salt free seasoning from Trader Joes) or use seasoning of your choice
Optional : GF soy sauce or my fabulous ginger peanut sauce


Directions:

Sautee the purple cabbage, garlic, and ginger in olive oil.spray until soft. Spray the spiraled zucchini and then add to the cabbage and sautee until the zucchini begins to soften but not too much. Remove from heat and serve! Season as desired with 21 Salute ( salt free seasoning from Trader Joe's,  or GF soy sauce or my ginger peanut sauce

My notes:
1. Makes a wonderful side dish
2. Dress it up with nuts, seeds, or protein of your choice.


purple cabbage in a skillet

zucchini spirals on a plate

zucchini spirals and purple cabbage in a skillet

bowl of zucchini spirals with red cabbage

zucchini spirals and red cabbage


This recipe will be linked to my blog carnival list

Friday, June 10, 2016

10% Off YL Essential Oils Starter Kit ( Today Only)



I bought my Young Living Essential Oils Starter Kit last October and I'm finding a multitude of very valuable ways for me and my family to use them. 

Everyone is talking about Essential Oils and there is a good reason.  I like the idea of having chemical free alternatives to rely for everyday uses. Young Living makes oils that you can ingest as well as oil blends that you can use externally.

!!!This is the first time I ever saw a discount on the starter kit, so if you have been thinking about it- today is the day to order!

If you order through me and my group, you will get 

  • one on one support, 
  • access to webinars
  • videos 
  • training on how to use the essential oils 
  • We have a great team and would love to have you join us! 


Click here to : Order Young Living Essential Oils

Today Only The Starter Kit is 10% Off ( June 10)
Click here to : Order Young Living Essential Oils


Can't Be Without My Essential Oils

  • Since learning about Essential Oils and how to use them, I don't what I would do without them. 
  • I bring them with me when I travel to help boost immunity especially on a plane or cruise ship, 
  • repel mosquitos, 
  • ease my stomach bloat and gas, 
  • relieve aches and pains from tension or strain like carrying suitcases, 
  • help purify and cleanse, 
  • relieve headaches, 
  •  I could go on - it seems like there is an essential oil that may help everything that could come up!
  • scroll down for more ways I use specific essential oil blends










Panaway: I use this essential oil blend to soothe achy muscles and it works great! I love the smell too. My niece gets menstrual cramp relief using Panaway diluted with almond oil applied to her crampy areas.

Lavendar: I diffuse this one at night before bed. It's very relaxing and we feel so peaceful when it's diffusing.

R.C. - My daughter in law uses this one for congestion and she feels it opens her right up. 

Digeze: I use this one for minor stomach discomfort by rubbing some Digeze diluted in a carrier oil on my stomach. It really works for me to break up gas and discomfort!

Click here to : Order Young Living Essential Oils

contact me at vegyid2@yahoo.com for more information or if you need help placing your order. Judee Algazi...

If you sign up as part of my group, I am available to help you with information, questions, ideas, webinars, etc.



Click here to : Order Young Living Essential Oils

If you are not ready to buy your kit , but are  interested in buying the oils at wholesale prices or just learning more about Young Living Essential oils send me an email. I am a distributor and can help you sign up and be part of our team to receive wholesale prices. Email: vegyid2@yahoo.com  Judee Algazi #3329912 is my distributor number


Disclaimer: The information on my blog is for educational purposes only. I am not a medical doctor and am not trying to diagnose or treat disease. Always check with your medical doctor for advise.

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Friday, June 3, 2016

Guilt Free Baked Donuts - GF and Easy for National Donut Day






Today is National Donut Day and Dunkin Donuts is giving away a free donut. For those of us who wouldn't dream of eating a fried, chemical laden, white sugar, white flour donut  -whether gluten free or not, I have a better guilt free alternative!





These beautiful donuts are baked, made with high fiber almond and coconut ( gluten free/grain free ) flours, and lower glycemic coconut sugar. These ingredients are all available at Trader Joe's, Whole Foods, and health food stores. In fact, many supermarkets carry almond, coconut flours ,and coconut sugar in their gluten free isles.

You can see that my ( gluten free) donuts look fabulous, and I can tell you that they taste fabulous too!

Are they difficult to make? Absolutely not! The prep is 5-8 minutes and they bake in the donut pan in just twenty minutes. If you want to glaze it in melted dark chocolate chips- that's another 5 minutes! So go ahead and indulge-



Let's face it. If it weren't being advertised all over TV and social media, would you even be thinking about donuts?  If you've watched the news this morning and are thinking about donuts, why not make your own healthier version. Then go ahead enjoy a donut today!

I bought an inexpensive donut baking pan. It so easy, just like making muffins!



Author: Judee Algazi
Prep Time: 5-8 minutes
Bake Time: 20 minutes
Makes: 6 doughnuts
Need: donut pan

Ingredients:
1 cup of almond flour ( finely ground almonds) I get it at Trader Joe's
1/4 cup of coconut flour ( Trader Joe or gluten free isle in supermarkets)
1/4 teaspoon of baking powder ( aluminum free)
1/8 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 cup of vanilla flavored almond or coconut milk
1 tsp. of pure vanilla extract
1/4 cup of olive oil or coconut oil
3 eggs, beaten
optional: chocolate chips if you are not going to ice the donuts ( ok , add chocolate chips even it you are going to ice the doughnuts) or sprinkle with grated coconut!


Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Mix the dry ingredients ( almond flour, baking powder, and sea salt) and set aside
In another bowl, mix the wet ingredients together and add to the dry. Mix well with a spoon.
Spoon into the doughnut pan. Bake for 20 minutes


Quick Chocolate Glaze

Chocolate Icing #1:
1/2 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup chocolate chips ( I used dairy free)

Directions 
Using a saucepan and a low flame, melt the chocolate chips and coconut oil together stirring frequently ( about 3  minutes) Remove from heat.  Spoon over donuts. This makes a smooth shiny icing. Set aside to dry for about 1 hour ( or icing will be sticky)






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