Archive for the ‘Recipes’ Category

Healthy Summer Popsicle Recipes

Tuesday, July 1st, 2014

There’s nothing like a popsicle to cool you down on a hot summer day. But most store brands are loaded with sugar, artificial ingredients and food dyes.

Save your health, and some money this summer by making your very own popsicles at home. You can either use a Popsicle mold or Dixie cups with Popsicle sticks. If you use Dixie cups, cover them with aluminum foil and cut a hole for the Popsicle stick to go through- that will help keep the stick in place. Here are some of our favorite, kid friendly Popsicle recipes.

Orange Creamsicle Healthy Summer Popsicle Recipes

1/2 banana

1/2 cup plain yogurt

1 tsp. vanilla

1 tbsp. honey

1/4 cup fresh squeezed orange juice

Blend everything together, pour into a Popsicle mold and freeze overnight.

Mango Dream

1 large mango

1/4 cup full fat plain yogurt

2 tbsp. honey

1/4 tsp. vanilla

Red, White and Blue Pops

¾ cup sliced strawberries

¾ cup blueberries

½ cup fresh apple juice

Mix the strawberries and blueberries together in a bowl and divide them equally into your Popsicle molds then just fill the rest of the mold with apple juice. These make a great 4th of July treat!

Watermelon Squares

Watermelon is one of those fruits that just screams summer. All you have to do to make a delicious treat is cut up large chunks of watermelon and stick in a Popsicle stick before freezing.

Jacqueline Banks is a certified Holistic Health Counselor focused on nutrition and green living strategies. She works with women in all stages of motherhood, from mothers struggling with conception, through pregnancy, lactation and beyond to ensure the best health and nutrition for both mother and baby.

Three Superfoods Every Baby Should Eat

Thursday, April 3rd, 2014

While some mothers choose to avoid solids for the entire first year, others prefer to start sooner. The American Academy of Pediatrics says that most babies can start solids by 6 months, around the time babies begin to be much more active.

When you decide your baby is ready to begin solids, consider introducing some nutritionally dense superfoods instead of the traditional grain-based baby cereal. Babies produce plenty of functional enzymes and digestive juices that help them digest proteins and fats, making these fatty, protein-rich foods perfect first foods.

Introduce only one food at a time, and wait at least four days before introducing another food to rule out the possibility of a negative reaction. Always check with your pediatrician before beginning new foods.

Three Superfoods Every Baby Should EatEgg Yolks. Pediatricians warn us to stay away from egg whites, which may cause an allergic reaction, but the yolk is a nutritional powerhouse. Yolks from pasture-raised hens provide much-needed fat and cholesterol for proper brain and nervous system development, as well as choline, amino acids and vitamin A. Simply boil an egg for about 4 minutes so the yolk is soft but not runny, discard the white and serve with a small amount of unrefined sea salt.

Liver. Pastured, organic, poultry liver is extremely high in vitamin A, which is an important nutrient for developing babies. It also happens to be one of the best sources of usable iron along with vitamin B12 and other nutrients such as choline and cholesterol, which are important for healthy brain development. Start by shredding about a teaspoon of frozen liver (freezing for at least 14 days helps destroy any harmful microbes) onto an egg yolk. Beginning at six months you can serve baby cooked, pureed liver.

Salmon Roe. These nutrient-dense little eggs have some of the highest levels of omega 3s, almost 3.5 times the amount typically found in salmon. In addition to the brain-boosting fats, salmon roe is rich in antioxidants and fat-soluble vitamins along with zinc and iodine. Try serving by themselves or incorporated into a soft-boiled egg yolk.

Jacqueline Banks is a certified Holistic Health Counselor focused on nutrition and green living strategies. She works with women in all stages of motherhood, from mothers struggling with conception, through pregnancy, lactation and beyond to ensure the best health and nutrition for both mother and baby.

Baby’s First Foods

Wednesday, March 19th, 2014

Introducing solid foods is a big step for new moms and can be quite confusing. Here are some common questions new moms may have about introducing solids.

Is my baby ready for solid foods?

first food

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends breastfeeding as the sole source of nutrition for baby during the first six months of life. Below are a few milestones your baby should reach before starting solid food:

  • Baby can sit in high chair with good head control
  • Baby watches you eat, reaches for your food and seems eager to be fed
  • If you offer a spoon of food and baby pushes it out of its mouth; he may not have the ability to move it to the back of his mouth to swallow. If this happens- try to dilute food with breast milk or water or wait a week or two and try again.

Sounds like my baby is ready. What should I feed them first?

Traditionally single-grain cereals are introduced first; however there is no medical evidence that introducing solid foods in any particular order is advantageous for baby. This website has tons of great recipes, nutrition information and pointers on how to prepare homemade baby food.

Are there any foods I should avoid?

What to Expect has a great list of food to avoid. This includes nuts, egg whites, honey, cow’s milk, wheat, juice, shellfish, strawberries and chocolate. These foods can be introduced later, please check with your pediatrician for when these can be safely introduced.

What were your babies’ first foods?

With my first we attempted organic brown rice cereal right at six months. This did not go well; she hated it. We went back to breast milk for few weeks and tried sweet potatoes next time she had solids. Our second was 7.5 months before we gave him solid food and he started with homemade sweet potatoes.

How do you make sweet potatoes for your baby?

Preheat oven to 400* F. Wash and poke holes in sweet potatoes and wrap in foil; bake in oven until soft (30-60 minutes). Puree in blender mixed with water or breast milk for desired consistency. Drop spoonfuls onto cookie sheet to freeze. Once frozen put into Ziploc bags to store in freezer until ready to eat. Thaw and serve.

What was your baby’s first food? What would you do differently with your next child?

Kristen Beggs is a mom of two who enjoyed watching her babies take their first bite. 

 

Green Smoothies for Mom Superpowers

Monday, March 17th, 2014

When you have a baby at home, can be hard to get a good, nutritious breakfast—or any kind of meal. And if you have more than one child, you may spend a good deal of your day in the car. But you don’t have to sacrifice your health or your sanity to get a quality meal in your busy day. Smoothies are quick, portable, and super healthy, and green smoothies pack a powerful punch of fiber, vitamins, minerals and energy. And what mom can’t use more of that?

Great Green Smoothies

Here’s how to make the perfect (quick!) green smoothie:

Choose your greens. Some of my favorites for smoothies are kale and spinach, but you can use any other one you like to change the flavor profile. Collards and beet greens have a more robust taste and a handful of parsley is a great choice for added energy and brings some brightness to the smoothie.

Pick a base. This can take your smoothie from light, airy and tropical, to rich and creamy. For more of a cleansing smoothie I like to go with a mixture of coconut water and aloe vera juice. Adding almond or coconut milk makes a thicker, richer smoothie.

Find your Fruit. Frozen bananas, mangoes and cherries are great for adding sweetness and depth. Citrus fruits such as grapefruit, limes, and oranges create lighter, more refreshing flavors. Berries are great for creating classic combinations such as banana strawberry.

Add more veggies. A green smoothie doesn’t have to stop with one green ingredient. You can add as many veggies as you’d like. Carrots, cucumbers and beets are great choices to boost your vitamin content.

Sprinkle in some extras. Smoothies are a great way to sneak in some superfoods. Blackstrap molasses adds some iron and calcium, fresh ginger is a refreshing immune booster, and seeds such as hemp, flax and chia add fiber, a little protein and a lot of nutrition. You can even try adding some green powder made of dried greens and fruits for even more of a boost.

Choose a fat and/or protein. Many of the vitamins in veggies are fat-soluble which means they need to be taken with some fat to be absorbed by the body. Coconut oil is one of the healthiest fats around, but other fats such as avocado and flax oil, nut butters or seeds work just as well. A high-quality protein powder can also help turn a smoothie from a snack into a delicious balanced meal.

Jacqueline Banks is a certified Holistic Health Counselor focused on nutrition and green living strategies. She works with women in all stages of motherhood, from mothers struggling with conception, through pregnancy, lactation and beyond to ensure the best health and nutrition for both mother and baby.