Friday, December 31, 2010

Friday's Food for Thought: One of the Why's Behind the Assault on Raw Dairy

If you appreciate real, living, healthy foods- in the form of raw dairy, one of the healthiest on the planet, then you have got to check out this article from Dr. Mercola shedding some light on the recent all out assault against raw dairy in this country.

We have got to stay informed, so that we can fight to make sure we can access the living foods we need!

Check out the article at:

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Toxin Free Body: Our Favorite Men's Shaving Cream

My wonderful husband is very particular about the shaving cream he uses. He has very sensitive skin that is easily aggravated, making it difficult to find a good shaving cream. There are many natural brands that do not do the job well, and conventional brands contain a smorgasbord of toxins.

Fortunately, Aubrey Organics makes an awesome toxin free shaving cream that is gentle, thick, and works extremely well, even for sensitive skin like my husband's. It smells wonderful too! (Definitely manly, but I like it too!)

We get ours at Whole Foods, but you can order it online as well. Enjoy your toxin free shaving cream, men!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Toxin Free Home: Our Favorite Water Bottle

Water bottles are practically a necessity of modern day life. When we are on the run so much, we need to take our hydration with us!

Buying plastic water bottles is bad for the environment, and many conventional reusable plastic options are full of toxic BPA and phthalates. So what are we to do?

Our family loves Klean Kanteen's stainless steel, food grade, aluminum & plastic free water bottles. My husband has a 40 oz. container that his sister gave him for his birthday. He loves it, and it keeps him drinking water. (Especially if I put sugar in it. Just kidding! Well, kind of.) ;)

These bottles wash up great, don't stink, and are heavy duty. They also make smaller bottles, as well as sippy cups and kid sized kanteens. Check them out at their website at:

Happy toxin free water bottle drinking everyone!

Monday, December 27, 2010

Monday's Menu: Baby Snacks: Bananas Fried in Coconut Oil

(Photo courtesy of தகவலுழவன்)

My kids love bananas. I mean, seriously love bananas. I ate banana chips almost obsessively when pregnant with Nathaniel, and he can now eat 4-5 bananas a day easily. Micah loves bananas (not quite as much as Nathaniel) so much that he eats them- peel & all, when we grocery shop. (It's my tactic for keeping him quiet!)

Besides eating bananas raw, my kids love eating bananas fried in coconut oil. I thought I'd share with you this simple snack that is great for growing kids. (And adults too!) Coconut oil is rich in lauric acid (found in breastmilk), healthy saturated fats essential for the health of the brain & heart, and is antimicrobial and antibacterial as well. Bananas are rich in potassium and vitamin B6.

The coconut oil also makes this snack very filling. It tastes like dessert, without any added sweetener!

"Fried" Bananas (Serves 2)
2 organic bananas, the riper the better
2 tablespoons organic extra virgin coconut oil, such as Nutiva or Garden of Life

Cut the bananas in half, and then the two halves in half as well- for a total of 4 pieces per banana.

Melt the coconut oil in a cast iron or stainless steel skillet until completely melted, on medium high heat.

Put the banana pieces in flat side down, turning every couple of minutes, until just becoming lightly crisp. (If you do too long, they get mushy, but if you don't do them long enough, they stay too firm.) Look for a light browning on both sides.

Remove from heat, cool down, and serve! That's it! I promise your kids will love this, so long as they like bananas. It smells divine too!


Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas Everyone!

Merry Christmas from our family to ours! We pray you have a blessed Christmas and a very happy New Year's!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Toxin Free Body: The Healing Properties of Cinnamon!

While you are enjoying your Christmas cookies sprinkled with cinnamon (organic & whole grain of course!) ;) and other delightful desserts, you might be interested to know that cinnamon, as well as these other typical holiday spices, contain some incredibly life-giving properties.

This Dr. Mercola article talks about cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves, and peppermint, and what they can do to boost your health!
Enjoy your holiday spices this year, and know you are doing your body a favor!

Enjoy your Christmas preparations everyone!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Toxin Free Body: Preventing the Common Cold

With cold & flu season raging all around us, I had to pass on this Dr. Mercola article I saw today. He gives some awesome tips on how to prevent catching colds & coughs, in addition to some great tips in case you do come down with one. (Although I still maintain that taking Garden of Life's Immune Balance products are one of the top things you can do to prevent/fight sickness!)

Check out the article for yourself to find out some great tips to protect yourself & your family, including one tip that costs less than a dollar and is extremely effective in our family's experience!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Monday's Menu Part 2: Healthy Holiday Eggnog

(Photo courtesy of Jacoplane)

Ok, ok, not the eggnog in the picture above, (although it is a French brand, and I am sure it is amazing!) but a great homemade recipe I found from Dr. Mercola, and tried last night. I bet it tastes just as good as the French version!

I never liked eggnog growing up, so I was hesitant to make my own. But I couldn't resist a recipe calling for drinking raw cream!

Here's Dr. Mercola's recipe for some truly delectable holiday eggnog- although I must admit that it could definitely use about 1 tspn. organic raw honey or other sweetener in order to taste like the eggnog we are all used to. However, I left it out, and still enjoyed it thoroughly!

Here's Dr. Mercola's recipe, taken from his free website: (To see the original article click here)

Enjoy this with your family this Christmas!

Healthy Eggnog

1-2 organic, raw eggs
2-3 ounces raw cream
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract (organic, no alcohol)
Cinnamon and nutmeg to taste

Blend all ingredients in a blender and it’s ready to serve!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Monday's Menu: Properly Prepared Cashews- A Great Snack!

As an early Christmas present, my Mom bought me a Nesco Gardenmaster Dehydrator, and I couldn't wait to use it. I peeked in my freezer to see what organic nuts might be hiding in large freezer bags, just waiting to be properly prepared.

To my delight, I found a large bag of organic, raw cashews hiding behind a bag of ice. I immediately measured out 4 cups, soaked them in a water & sea salt mixture for 6 hours, and popped them in the dehydrator for drying/light toasting. I left them in for 24 hours, and the result: crunchy, lightly salted, and extremely yummy cashews!

I love cashews because they are high in protein, iron, zinc, magnesium, and selenium. They are also high in antioxidants and phytochemicals- these properties protect from heart disease and cancer.

Plus, they taste good!

We love combining cashews with organic raisins for a quick snack, but you can be as creative as you want. They'd taste great in a trail mix with other organic dried fruit. I also enjoy sprinkling some over salads, or as a yogurt topping. Yum yum yum!

Here's a fantastic recipe for making your family properly prepared cashews. I adapted it from Sally Fallon's Nourishing Traditions cookbook. (I highly recommend that cookbook, by the way! It would make a great Christmas present.)

Properly Prepared Cashews (Soaking & drying the cashews prior to eating them makes them MUCH more digestible, which is very important for your overall health)

4 cups raw, organic cashews
1.5 tablespoons sea salt, such as Real Salt
Enough spring/filtered water to completely submerge the cashews

Pour the cashews into a large glass bowl. Add in the salt and stir around a little with your fingers to evenly distribute. Pour the water over the bowl, completely submerging the cashews, and cover the bowl with a lid or towel. Soak the cashews for 6 hours. If you soak them longer than that, they can become slimy.

After 6 hours, drain them in a colander and spread out on dehydrator trays, or on stainless steel baking trays for the oven. Set the temperature of your dehydrator to 160, or in your oven to 175 or 200. (Cashews are actually not truly raw, due to a toxic oil that must be removed before selling, so you won't be destroying any enzymes by the heat)

Turn on the heat, and let the cashews "bake" for about 24 hours, or until totally dry, and crunchy. Store in a small glass jar, or in
phthalate & PVC free plastic bags. (Whole Foods sells some good ones.) If you are going to keep them longer than a week or so, (ours always get eaten faster than that) then store them in the fridge.

Then enjoy!!!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Food for Thought: What's in Your Drinking Water?

Our bodies need water to survive, but what is really in the water we drink? Check out this Dr. Mercola article to find out why your tap water may be doing you far more harm than good!

Have an awesome weekend everyone!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Toxin Free Home: Best Ever Natural Toilet Bowl Cleaner

Growing up, my Mom used to hand me a bottle of Comet Cleanser to clean the toilet with, whenever it was chore time. I had asthma at the time, and it seemed that using that Comet Cleanser always gave me a mild asthmatic reaction. I would joke that I was allergic to cleaning the bathrooms, but as it turns out, I was likely just allergic to Comet Cleanser and all its toxic ingredients!

Fortunately, I've found an awesome, effective toilet bowl cleaner that will not give you any allergic reactions. (Or add to your body's burden, for that matter.) And it works!

It is Ecover's Toilet Bowl cleaner, and it has an awesome pine scent, (which smells somehow very appropriate for a clean toilet) disinfects thoroughly, and lasts forever. This stuff works great, and I love it!

You can get it at any natural health food store, or check out Ecover's website for a store locator tool.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Toxin Free Baby: Green Toys Product Review

When you have little ones, you soon find out how many toys are necessary to keep their little hands occupied. I mean, many household objects can be converted into toys- like kitchen tools- but you also need a good sized, rotating stash of age appropriate toys.

So many toys these days are loaded with toxins, particularly in plastics- but it can also be hard to
continually purchase new wooden toys, which although awesome, can be significantly more expensive than their conventional plastic counterparts.

That's why I was so excited when I recently discovered Green Toys, a California based company that manufactures all their toys in the USA, using recycled milk jugs that contain no lead, phthalates, or BPA. They are made from #4 plastic,
polyethylene, which even Dr. Mercola recommends as safe.

Yeah! Affordable toxin free toys! And they are so adorable! My little Micah received this stacking toy & bath boat for his 1st birthday from Grandma & Grandpa:

Aren't these just precious? They have so many other cute products as well! I am particularly smitten with this fire truck and chef set.They also have building blocks and feeding products as well, like cups, plates, and forks and spoons for babies and toddlers. And everything is toxin free! Check them out at their website, Green Toys, and purchase them at Amazon has some great deals. And you'll see from the reviews that others like them as much as I do!

Enjoy your toxin free, affordable toys with your little ones!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Toxin Free Body: Homemade Deodorant That Works!!!

Even before I started the Maker's Diet five years ago, I began looking for alternatives to conventional deodorant. While shopping at Bath & Body works one day, an employee told me about the connection between parabens (synthetic preservatives) & breast cancer. I tried a "natural" deodorant that I purchased that day, but it didn't work at all.

So I returned to my normal deodorant- until I started the Maker's Diet, and read further about the danger of aluminum in
antiperspirant deodorants- it has been linked to cancer and to Alzheimer's. I knew we had to switch!

We did switch to an organic line of deodorant, first using Aubrey Organics. They work well and we used it for a long time, and in the last five years have used almost every brand of natural & organic deodorant on the market.

Our most recent favorite was
Weleda's Citrus deodorant, but in the end I got tired of purchasing expensive bottles of deodorant every month. When a friend on a Baby Center chat forum posted a recipe for homemade deodorant, I thought I'd give it a try.

I'll admit- I was extremely skeptical. And my husband was beyond skeptical. But as he always does, he agreed to give it a shot. We were both amazed by the results- for pennies a month!

So here is the recipe for an extremely easy, extremely effective homemade deodorant, that is truly
toxin free! (And with no alcohol to irritate sensitive skin.)

Truly Toxin Free Homemade Deodorant
1/4 cup organic corn starch
1/4 cup baking soda
6 tablespoons organic coconut oil

In a bowl,
combine the corn starch and baking soda with a spoon.

(I like using Rapunzel's organic corn starch)

Then add the 6 tablespoons coconut oil to the bowl. I like Nutiva's Organic extra virgin coconut oil, or Garden of Life's coconut oil.Using the back of the spoon (preferably a larger spoon, but not huge!) combine the coconut oil with the baking soda & corn starch.

At first, it will just be crumbly. You will think I am lying to you, and that it won't work! But don't fear,
keep folding all the ingredients together & combining with the back of the spoon for another minute or two. You'll know it's done when it is velvety smooth, without any crumbling.

That's it! I spoon it out and put it into a jar, and apply by hand daily. However, my husband prefers the convenience of a deodorant stick, so I use an empty stick we have, and pack the mixture down into it. Then you just shape it at the top, and the coconut oil keeps it solid, especially after it sets the first day or so.

I promise you- this stuff works! I read an article online discussing using baking soda for deodorant that said, "If baking soda can deodorize kitty litter, it can deodorize you!"

The coconut oil is also antibacterial and antimicrobial, and gives it a lovely, mild scent!

Enjoy your economical, truly toxin free deodorant! If you give this a try, please be sure to let me know what you think!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Monday's Menu: Super Simple Slow Cooker Beans

Beans are a truly delightful food. If the extent of your experience with beans is in a Taco Bell burrito, then you have no idea what you are missing out on. Even store bought, canned beans don't hold a candle to home made, soaked and slow cooked beans- melting in your mouth and dripping with cheese.

We love beans in our house. They are a delicious, satisfying (and nutritious) side dish or snack. Beans are full of protein & fiber, and even cancer preventing properties! Homemade pinto beans can be made into refried beans, or into a dip. We love beans of all kinds- black, kidney, navy, but our true favorite are pinto beans.

We had some lovely pinto beans with tortilla soup over the weekend, and I thought I'd share with you my super simple slow cooker recipe for the best beans you've ever had. The secret to their success is long, slow, cooking.

My mother in law gave me an excellent Mexican cookbook when we got married, written by Rick Bayless, a famous Mexican cook. He says the mistake most American cooks make is undercooking, not overcooking beans. If you don't believe me, try these for yourself- you'll be shocked that they cooked so long, but taste sooo good!

Super Simple Slow Cooker Beans

1 cup organic dried beans (pinto, black, etc)

Filtered or spring water
Sea salt, such as Real Salt
2 tbsp Homemade whey, lemon juice, or yogurt
Optional: one organic onion, quartered

The night before you want to serve, pour beans into your slow cooker and cover generously with water. (You want to completely submerge them, and add enough additionally so that you're not opening the slow cooker frequently the next day adding water)

Add the 2 tbsp whey, yogurt, or lemon juice. I personally prefer whey or raw yogurt.

Cover and leave overnight.

The next morning, turn your slow cooker on High.
If you want to use the onion, add it at this point- separate the quartered pieces into crescents. Let the beans come to a boil. (Usually takes a couple hours.) With most slow cookers, you can leave them on high the entire cooking time, but if your beans are seriously boiling, turn it down to low. You want constant movement on the surface of the water, but definitely not a rolling boil. Monitor the water level throughout the day.

That's it! I cook the beans up to 12 hours, and honestly, the longer the better!

No sooner than 30 minutes before serving, add about 1-2 tspns of sea salt to the beans. I learned from Rick Bayless that if you add them prior to this time frame, the beans will become tough. I never add the salt until immediately before serving.

Top with grated raw cheese & organic sour cream, and enjoy!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Friday's Food for Thought: Could You Live to be 100?!

You have GOT to check out this interview & subsequent article from Dr. Mercola, who discusses the lifestyle of Bernando La Pallo, who is 108 years old and going strong!!!

See for yourself how he did it, and learn some secrets to give you a long and healthy life!!!

Have a great weekend everyone!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Toxin Free Body: Why Butter is The Best!

If you want to start a debate in a social setting, as the saying goes, just bring up the following topics: God, politics, and....butter?

It sounds funny, but it's true! There is almost no food as demonized as butter, except perhaps milk.

But if you're avoiding butter thinking that you're doing your arteries, your waistline, or your health a favor, think again!

In fact, butter promotes fertility, slashes cancer & heart attack risks, is good for your skin, prevents asthma and is good for digestion!

Oh, and it tastes amazing too! (Our baby Micah eats it in little pieces, and I think I could too!)

Wondering why you should believe me? Check out this article from Dr. Mercola showing why butter truly is the best. (And why margarine, shortening & spreads are the true villains.)

So have your organic, (preferably raw) butter and enjoy it too!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Monday's Menu Part 2: Yummy Slow Cooker Chili

Ok, so it's obviously not Monday anymore, but I wanted to squeeze in a recipe this week for some super yummy slow cooker chili! It's so easy, satisfying, and delicious. And it's perfect for these cold weather months, or any time of the year, really!

I adapted it from a slow cooker cookbook I borrowed from the library. More on some awesome slow cooker dishes to come! The cookbook is titled, "Not Your Mother's Slow COoker Cookbook" by Beth Hensperger and Julie Kauffman.

Super Satisfying Slow Cooker Chili (Serves 6-8)

3 lbs organic grass fed ground beef
2 medium organic onions, chopped
2 organic medium sized bell peppers, chopped
3 cloves organic garlic, diced
1 & 1/4 cups organic beef broth
1, 28 oz. organic diced tomato can, with juice
1, 8 oz. organic tomato sauce ca
1/2 tspn. organic cumin
1/2 tspn. dried organic oregano
2 tbsp. organic chili powder
2 teaspoons sea salt, such as Real Salt
1 cup organic uncooked pinto beans (like the kind you buy in bulk to cook yourself)
1 cup organic uncooked kidney beans (see above)


The night before, soak the cup of pinto beans, and cup of kidney beans in enough water to cover them, with 2 tbsp whey, yogurt, or lemon juice.

The next morning, cook the beans in a separate pot, in a separate slow cooker, or soak them during the previous day & cook them in a slow cooker the night before you make the chili, so that they are ready to go. I just did them in a second slow cooker.

To start the chili: In a pan, saute the onions and bell peppers in organic butter or coconut oil until soft. Add the pressed garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Transfer to the slow cooker. Add the ground beef to the slow cooker, breaking it up into little balls with your hand. You can always make these pieces smaller as it cooks, if you'd like.

Add the diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, & spices, and cook on high for 3-4 hours, or until the ground beef is cooked through. Add the beans and turn the slow cooker to low, until you are ready to serve.

Garnish with organic sour cream, ( I like Organic Valley's full fat version) organic avocado slices, and organic raw cheese. I love cutting the cheese into cubes, and putting about 1/4- 1/2 cup in the bottom of each bowl. It tastes so lovely melted, and just wraps everything in yummy cheesiness.


Monday, December 6, 2010

Monday's Menu: Raw Milk Formula for Babies

When it comes to feeding our babies, mother's milk is always best. Although, it's definitely true that a mother's milk is only as good as the quality of her diet. If a Mom's diet is full of caffeine, sugar, trans fats, and lacking in vital nutrients, that means her milk will be as well. Trans fats particularly affect the fat content of a mother's milk, making it much more like skim milk for baby.

So the best option is for Mom to be following an extremely high-nutrient diet that gives baby optimal nutrients. Check out my former post with the Weston A. Price Foundation's recommendations for what foods pregnant & lactating women should eat.

However, there are some instances when no matter how great her diet is, Mom just can't breastfeed. Maybe it's because of illness, another pregnancy, or traveling. For example, when I got pregnant with our third baby (I'm now 5 months) and once I was about 12 weeks along, I simply wasn't making more than 1 oz. per feeding. Needless to say, our 9 month old was not very happy about this situation!

At this point I switched him to Weston A. Price's raw milk formula. He did so great on it and has been on it ever since. With Nathaniel, our older son, I also put him on this formula when I weaned him, and he stayed on it until he was almost 2.5! I really give this formula credit for the exceptional health of my little guys.

The formula is made up of raw milk & cream, and a whole bunch of truly excellent fats for growing little ones- coconut oil, olive oil, sunflower oil, cod liver oil, (I usually leave this out and give it separately on a spoon!) nutritional yeast for various vitamins, acerola cherry powder for Vitamin C, and probiotics for a healthy digestive and immune system.

I've copied the formula from the Weston A. Price's website. You can view the original article here.

Note: I've always made this formula for older babies, so I usually leave out the whey, gelatin, and lactose. If I were making it for a baby younger than 9 months, I would add all of those ingredients. :)

Raw Milk Baby Formula

Makes 36 ounces.

"Our milk-based formula takes account of the fact that human milk is richer in whey, lactose, vitamin C, niacin, and long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids compared to cow's milk but leaner in casein (milk protein). The addition of gelatin to cow's milk formula will make it more digestible for the infant. Use only truly expeller-expressed oils in the formula recipes, otherwise they may lack vitamin E."

The ideal milk for baby, if he cannot be breastfed, is clean, whole raw milk from old-fashioned cows, certified free of disease, that feed on green pasture. For sources of good quality milk, see or contact a local chapter of the Weston A. Price Foundation.

If the only choice available to you is commercial milk, choose whole milk, preferably organic and unhomogenized, and culture it with a piima or kefir culture to restore enzymes (available from G.E.M. Cultures 253-588-2922 or


  • 2 cups whole raw cow's milk, preferably from pasture-fed cows
  • 1/4 cup homemade liquid whey (See recipe for whey, below) Note: Do NOT use powdered whey or whey from making cheese (which will cause the formula to curdle). Use only homemade whey made from yoghurt, kefir or separated raw milk.
  • 4 tablespoons lactose1
  • 1/4 teaspoon bifidobacterium infantis2
  • 2 or more tablespoons good quality cream (preferably not ultrapasteurized), more if you are using milk from Holstein cows
  • 1/2 teaspoon unflavored high-vitamin or high-vitamin fermented cod liver oil or 1 teaspoon regular cod liver oil3
  • 1/4 teaspoon high-vitamin butter oil (optional)1
  • 1 teaspoon expeller-expressed sunflower oil1
  • 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil1
  • 2 teaspoons coconut oil1
  • 2 teaspoons Frontier brand nutritional yeast flakes1
  • 2 teaspoons gelatin1
  • 1-7/8 cups filtered water
  • 1/4 teaspoon acerola powder1, 2

1. Available from Radiant Life 888-593-8333,
2. Earlier versions of this web page called for 1 tsp of bifidobacterium infantis and 1 tsp of acerola powder--these were typos.
3. Use only recommended brands of cod liver oil. See our recommendations here.


  • Put 2 cups filtered water into a pyrex measuring pitcher and remove 2 tablespoons (that will give you 1-7/8 cups water).
  • Pour about half of the water into a pan and place on a medium flame.
  • Add the gelatin and lactose to the pan and let dissolve, stirring occasionally.
  • When the gelatin and lactose are dissolved, remove from heat and add the remaining water to cool the mixture.
  • Stir in the coconut oil and optional high-vitamin butter oil and stir until melted.
  • Meanwhile, place remaining ingredients into a blender.
  • Add the water mixture and blend about three seconds.
  • Place in glass bottles or a glass jar and refrigerate.
  • Before giving to baby, warm bottles by placing in hot water or a bottle warmer. NEVER warm bottles in a microwave oven.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Friday's Food for Thought: Is Cancer A Man Made Disease?

Check out this article from Dr. Mercola, proving that cancer is indeed preventable, and that it is indeed a man made disease!

In 2008, 12.4 million people worldwide were diagnosed with cancer, and 7.6 million people died from the disease. These numbers are expected to double by 2020, and triple by 2030!

That is a LOT of people- representing countless families affected. Check out this article, to find out why cancer is preventable- and what steps you can do to either reverse a cancer diagnosis or prevent yourself from ever getting one!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Toxin Free Baby: Supplements That Make Kids Smile!

While we're on the topic of keeping healthy, I had to tell you about another of Garden of Life's new products that is just as amazing as their new Immune Balance line- except, it's for kids!

And the best part- kids love it!
It's their new Vitamin Code Kid's multivitamin.

As you can see above, here's my Nathaniel happily munching on his now beloved "bears." He loves them so much that he asks me every single meal for the bears and the bottle. (He loves playing with it, it must be the adorable animal pictures!)

They smell so yummy, even I couldn't resist. I tried one, and they were delicious! I could eat them like candy. Apparently Nathaniel feels the same way, because he asks me for more every time he has one. (I wish the serving size were about 10 daily, maybe that would satisfy him!)

And the best part- your little ones will be getting their daily nutrients from organic fruits & veggies like organic strawberries and blueberries, organic cherries, and even organic garlic and ginger juice. (Not to mention a whole slew of other veggies like bell peppers, brussel sprouts, broccoli, cucumber, and asparagus, all organic. There are 22 fruits & veggies, to be exact.)

I love this because most kid's vitamins are made just like cheap adult ones- from synthetic, chemically made ingredients, (which don't do your body any good anyway) and sweetened with awful things like corn syrup, with artificial dyes and colors.

Not so with the Garden of Life Vitamin Code Kid's vitamins- all the nutrition in these bears come from
organically grown food- the kind you would feel great about serving on your dinner table.

I wouldn't give my kids any less than the best. My little guys will grow up with these supplements as their childhood vitamins! (Good thing for me that they like them so much!)

And while they're enjoying their bears, my kiddos are getting support for their immune systems with nutrients like 100% DV Vitamin C & Vitamin D, support for their quickly growing bones,
probiotics for their digestive system, and nutrients that support their energy levels and their eye health.

I'd say that's a great package- vitamins that are amazing for kids, that they want to eat! What more could you ask for?

Check out Garden of Life's website for more info about these awesome vitamins, and pick some up yourself at any health food store, or online!

Note: I am not currently giving these vitamins to our baby. Not for a couple more years, at least. : ) He does, however, love playing with the bottle, just like his brother!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Toxin Free Body: Keeping Healthy this Winter

I don't know about you, but it seems like it is always cold and flu season where I live! However, this seems to be heightened in the cold weather months- when temperatures drop and sicknesses rise. There's truly nothing more inconvenient and uncomfortable than an awful cough or cold, especially because of their tendency to linger for weeks on end. And when it seems like everyone around you has some kind of sickness, it's hard to stay healthy!

Fortunately, I have some great news for you! Getting sick is preventable. It all comes back to the strength of your immune system, which is completely in your hands! There are many factors which influence immune system health- like getting enough sleep, eating the right life giving foods, and exercising. But there are some other measures you can take as well to support your immune
system's health, which will in turn support your overall health!

If you want to keep your health in optimal form this winter, then you have got to check out Garden of Life's new Immune Balance line. It is truly phenomenal! My husband is calling it his miracle.

There are several products they have designed to keep you healthy this cold & flu season- and anytime of the year, really. I was so thrilled when Garden of Life sent me s
ome to try first hand- and let me tell you, they work!!!

First, because the best defense is a good offense, they have the Immune Balance Daily, which is
designed to keep you from fighting sickness in the first place.

Give your body a boost and keep your immune system functioning in an extraordinary way- and you won't have to spend time fighting illness! Check out this link for more specific info about this awesome supplement.

However, if you still find yourself fighting something, for whatever reason- you've been busy and stressed and haven't gotten enough sleep, you've been eating poorly, or you forgot to take your Immune Balance Daily, ;) then don't worry! Garden of Life has two awesome products to help you nip any impending sickness in the bud. Just take them when you feel like you are "fighting" something!

There are two products- Immune Balance Rapid, and Immune Balance Rapid Extra Strength. Both are extremely powerful immune system boosters designed to get you well- or keep you from getting sick- fast. With hearty, powerful probiotics, and time tested herbs & botanicals, you'll be fine in no time.

My husband took one round of the Rapid Extra Strength vitamins when he felt that he was fighting a cough. In fact, he took them right before traveling to another state for 10 days. Under those circumstances, he would normally either fight the cough the entire trip, or come down with it once he got home. However, because he took the Rapid Extra Strength lozenges, not only did he completely ward off the cough, but he stayed healthy once he got home too!

Seriously, these products work! I can think of no better tool for your wellness arsenal- stock up on some in case you start feeling under the weather, and take the Immune Balance Daily to keep yourself from getting there in the first place!

There are also several other products in the new Immune Balance line- check them out here at Garden of Life's site. They have some awesome
products for sinus health, for yeast & gluten free diets, and also for keeping your digestive tract rid of excessive yeast.

You can purchase these awesome supplements at any health food store, and also online. Just Google Garden of Life Immune Balance to find out some purchasing options!

So do yourself and your loved ones a favor this cold & flu season- pick up some Immune Balance supplements and stay healthy this winter!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Toxin Free Body: Why You Should Avoid Farm Raised Salmon

Are you eating salmon loaded with pesticides, antibiotics, synthetic pigments, and toxic compounds like copper sulfate, thinking that it's "heart & brain healthy"?

If so, here's some information that will make you want to avoid farm caught salmon like the plague: if farmed salmon were not fed synthetic pigments to dye the flesh, your salmon would be an unappetizing gray, not pink! This is due to their altered diets, which are not congruent with nature.

This awesome article from Dr. Mercola exposes the dark side of farm raised salmon.
Check out the article to find out the truth, and buy wild caught salmon instead of farm raised!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Your Action Needed!

"If people let the government decide what foods they eat and what medicines they take, their bodies will soon be in as sorry a state as are the souls of those who live under tyranny."

~ Thomas Jefferson

I saw this article from Dr. Mercola, and I HAD to pass it on to you! Do you want the government telling you what you can and cannot eat, even controlling whether or not you can have your own garden? ME EITHER!

Take the time to read the bottom half of this article, and take the action Dr. Mercola recommends! Let's keep this country free- including the freedom of choice to choose our own food!

Here's the article:

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Recipe for Thanksgiving Pumpkin Bread

With Thanksgiving quickly approaching, all I can think of is warm things and spicy breads. Growing up, my Mom used to make delicious pumpkin breads every year. So when I saw this recipe from Garden of Life, through their Extraordinary Health Newsletter, I had to pass it on to you! See the original article here. Here's the recipe!

Seasonal Pumpkin Bread
Serves 10-12

3 cups of freshly ground spelt flour
1 ½ cups of mashed pumpkin
1 cup of water
3 Tablespoons of kefir, probiotic-rich yogurt, or raw apple cider vinegar
¾ cup of extra virgin coconut oil
3 omega-3 eggs
1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cloves
¾ teaspoon of sea salt
1 teaspoon of baking soda
½ teaspoon of baking powder
1 cup of raisins
1 cup crispy nuts (chopped)

Mix together the flour, mashed pumpkin, water and kefir (or yogurt or apple cider vinegar) in a large bowl. Cover the bowl and let the mixture sit at room temperature for at least 8 hours.

When you’re ready to bake the pumpkin bread, preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease two loaf pans with coconut oil. Uncover the pumpkin mixture and add the remaining ingredients—except for the raisins and nuts—and mix well. When mixed, then add the raisins and nuts. Pour the batter into the two loaf pans and then bake them for 45 minutes or until golden brown. Cool for about 30 minutes. Serve warm.

Recipe courtesy of Extraordinary Health Team

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Tips for Cooking the Perfect Thanksgiving Turkey

I saw this article last night on Whole Foods website and had to share. It is a fantastic guide to cooking organic & natural turkeys! Like any other organic/grass fed meat, free range turkeys cook differently than their conventional counterparts. Their meat is naturally leaner, and no additives are included. Thus, you don't want to cook your delicious, but expensive, free range bird as you normally would, just to find that it comes out dry! This article will give you all the tips you need for a fantastic, and toxin free, Thanksgiving turkey!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Monday's Menu: Thanksgiving Sweet Potatoes

Ah, the sweet potato. No other vegetable can top its sweetness on the Thanksgiving table, or any other time of the year, for that matter. (In my humble opinion, at least!) And besides their lovely texture, sweet potatoes are also high in beta carotene, Vitamin C, and Vitamin B6, in addition to being rich in dietary fiber and complex carbohydrates. Not bad for such a vegetable!

In traditional cultures, sweet potatoes were fermented in holes in the ground. These days, the only time anyone in the U.S. sees them is when they are covered with marshmallows on Thanksgiving day. Unfortunately, marshmallows are extremely unhealthy, and I have to warn you- even the "organic" ones are too! Corn syrup is bad for you no matter what, even if it's "organic"! I've never seen any made without it.

The good news is, it's possible to make some delightful sweet potatoes for your Thanksgiving table, even without the marshmallows. And trust me, I know how hard it can be to give those up. My Mom made sweet potato casserole every year that I can remember growing up, and I used to eat only the toasty marshmallows, eschewing most of the sweet potatoes. So I know how good it is!

But sweet potatoes are so sweet- you don't need marshmallows! I've found that the key to yummy sweet potatoes is plenty, and I do mean plenty, of rich butter.

Here's a basic recipe I use for sweet potatoes. (Although I don't ever add sweetener, and we don't miss it, but I'll include it below for Thanksgiving) I love sweet potatoes so much that we have them once a week! (On Sundays, with our weekly roast!)

So Sweet Sweet Potatoes (Serves 4-6)

(I don't follow this precisely by any means, so feel free to add more butter, or more salt or cinnamon if you think it needs it!)

10 medium sized organic yams
1-2 tspns. sea salt, to taste
1-2 tspns. organic cinnamon, to taste
1-2 sticks organic butter, like Organic Valley's cultured, unsalted butter, or use homemade raw butter!
1 cup organic raisins
1/4-1/2 cup Rapadura, or raw honey

Wash sweet potatoes and prick holes all over them. Bake in a 350 degree oven (put some foil on the bottom of your oven for easy cleanup) for about 2-3 hours, or until very, very tender when pierced with a fork or knife.

Take the sweet potatoes out of the oven when very tender, and cut them down the middle. Scoop out the flesh into a large bowl. Add in the butter, and stir until thoroughly melted and evenly distributed. Then add the sweetener, sea salt, cinnamon and raisins. Stir thoroughly.

Serve right away, or reheat in a dish in the oven, or in a crockpot on Thanksgiving day.

Enjoy your sweet, sweet potatoes!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Friday's Food for Thought: Can This Vitamin Prevent Alzheimer's?

Did you know that in the United States today, 5.3 million people have Alzheimer's, that it is the 6th leading cause of death, and that in 20 years it is projected one in four Americans will have it?

I didn't either! I know I just shared a Dr. Mercola article yesterday, but I had to pass this on- in this awesome article Dr. Mercola details a vitamin that can slash your chances for developing Alzheimer's, as well as some lifestyle/dietary changes that will help as well.

Alzheimer's is a tragic and unnecessary disease. Check out this article and then pass on this valuable information to your loved ones!

Have a great weekend everyone!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Stay Away From These "Gender Bender" Chemicals!

Do you want your boys and girls to be healthy and develop properly, and one day be able to give you cute little grandkids? :)

The choices you make now will affect them for their lifetimes, as new research has proved that chemicals which alter the endocrine, or hormonal system, can affect reproduction.

Check out this article by Dr. Mercola for more!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Toxin Free Home: Alternatives to Plastic Food Storage

With all the concern today about BPA, phthalates, and plastics in general, it makes sense to keep food away from storage containers containing these toxic chemicals! Today I'll show you a great alternative to the conventional plastic food containers that are so prevalent today.

Remember that the aforementioned chemicals will leach out of plastic and into your food, thereby sending toxins into your body when you eat the food. This is especially true when foods are reheated in plastic containers in the microwave. (Which has serious dangers of its own!)

In light of these dangers, you won't find any plastic containers in our home. We store our leftovers in glass Pyrex containers with BPA- free plastic lids, or in leftover mayonnaise or peanut butter jars.

(We're always buying the 26- 32 oz. sizes, so I just pop them in the dishwasher when we're through with them, they make great storage containers for smaller amounts of food!) I also have some stainless steel bowls with lids that I use as well. But by far, my favorite food storage option are my Pyrex bowls, which I can never seem to have enough of!

I hope this gives you a good start on storing toxin free food for your family!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Toxin Free Baby: Cornstarch for Diaper Rash

When you have little ones, you have diapers, and diapers, and diapers to change. Especially when, like me, you have two in diapers! I have often thought it would be funny to keep track of just how many diapers I change day in and day out. But I don't have the time!

With all those diapers, you're bound to get some rashes. Some are preventable, and some aren't. (Like if baby poops at night and doesn't tell you!) In a bind recently, because we had run out of our favorite balm, and Micah had developed a decent rash out of nowhere, I ran across a recommendation to use cornstarch on baby's bottom, similarly to how you would use diaper powder.

I had a stash in my cupboard because I've been using it as an ingredient in a fabulous homemade deodorant. (I didn't make it up, I got the recipe from a friend- more info to come soon!)

So I decided to give it a shot. First I gave him a baking soda bath so he was really clean, and then sprinkled a good amount of corn starch on his little bottom, and some in his diaper. It does get a little messy, but just coat it all over their bottoms, and if some falls, it will probably go into the diaper anyway.

I couldn't believe it- his rash was gone the next day! Since then, I've been using it almost every diaper change as a preventative. It works as a barrier between their skin and all the ammonia & bacteria in their diapers- keeping rashes away, or, giving them time to heal.

If you try this home remedy, be sure to let me know how it works for your kiddos!

I recommend using Rapunzel Organic Corn Starch, which, unlike conventional corn starch, is GMO free!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Toxin Free Body: Best Ever Prenatal Vitamins

Every pregnant or nursing mama wants the very best for her baby. There is SO much going on in this critical time, and if we want our babies to develop optimally, we have to ensure they're getting the nutrients they need to do so!

That is why I love Garden of Life's Raw Prenatal. Let me repeat: I love, love, love, love this prenatal! They just came out with it last year, and I don't know how I made it through my first two pregnancies without it. I am now pregnant with baby #3, due March, 23rd, (yeah!) and this pregnancy has been SO much easier than the first two, particularly in the first trimester. I attribute it to the awesome vitamins!

I recently ran out for several days, due to an ordering delay. I was counting down the minutes to get it back: my stomach started hurting, I was really nauseated, and I started getting heartburn. I couldn't figure out why at first, and then I realized I hadn't been taking my prenatals. As soon as I got them back, (yesterday) all those lovely symptoms disappeared!

The thing we have to remember about supplements is this: if they are not in a form that your body can recognize, we're just wasting our money. That is why I love Garden of Life vitamins- they are from food, not chemically created, isolated, and synthesized- your body doesn't recognize these nutrients anyway. If your body doesn't recognize the nutrients, then you're not getting what the side of that bottle says you are. Your body just sends it down the trash!

So when your health and the health of your little ones are at stake, take only the best! And with optimal nutrients available from food, immune system support for you and your little one, plenty of folic acid (200% DV) to prevent neural tube defects, and ginger to support your stomach & digestion, Garden of Life's Raw Prenatals are simply the best!

For more info, check out their website at:

Friday, November 12, 2010

Friday's Food For Thought: Do CAT Scans Cause Cancer?

Did you know that scientists writing for the Archives of Internal Medicine estimate that excessive radiation from CT scans kills 14,500 people and may cause 29,000 new cancers each year?

And did you know that one CT scan exposes you to as much radiation as 400 chest x-rays?

Check out this great article from Garden of Life, talking more about the dangers of excessive CT scan radiation.

Here's the original article!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Foods to AVOID, Part 2

Well, after today we are finally done with our list! If you follow the recommendations for the Extraordinary & Average foods, and stay away from the Trouble foods, you will be well on your way to extraordinary health!

To wrap this up, here are the rest of the "Trouble" foods. Remember, these foods are detrimental to your health, so avoid them at all costs!

Fats and Oils:

Canola Oil
Corn oil
Cottonseed oil
Any partially hydrogenated oil

Nuts and Seeds:

Nuts roasted in oil
Honey-roasted nuts

Condiments, Spices & Seasonings:

All spices that contain added sugar or preservatives (especially look out for high fructose corn syrup in bottled sauces)


Canned fruits in syrup


Commercial beer and wine
Chlorinated tap water
Fruit juices or drinks with artificial flavors
Fruit juices or drinks made from concentrate

Grains and Starchy Carbohydrates:

Bread or crackers made with white or unbleached flour
Pastas made with white or unbleached flour
White or unbleached flour
Dried cereal with sugar
White rice
Instant Oatmeal
Baked Goods


Corn Syrup
High Fructose Corn Syrup
All artificial sweeteners, including:

Acesulfame K


Snack foods with sugar, partially hydrogenated oils, artificial sweeteners, or unbleached flour

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Foods to AVOID: Part 1

Well, we have finally completed our series on what foods to eat, and what brands to buy. Today I will share some of the foods that you should absolutely avoid at all costs! These foods do not promote health- they promote illness! I will share half today, and the rest of the list tomorrow.

This "Trouble" food list is taken from page 63 of the Great Physician's RX for Health & Wellness.

Trouble Foods:


Pork Sausage
Imitation meat products (soy)
Veggie burgers

Fish and Seafood:

Fried or breaded fish
Avoid all shellfish, including:


Fried or breaded chicken

Lunch Meat:

Corned Beef
Soy lunch meat


Imitation Eggs


Soy cheese
Rice cheese
Homogenized milk
Low-fat or skim milk
Commercial ice cream with sugar
Processed cheese food
American cheese (singles)
Yogurt with sugar or artificial sweetners
Any dairy product with added stabilizers, preservatives, sugars, or artificial sweeteners

Fats and Oils:

Canola Oil
Corn Oil
Cottonseed Oil
Any partially hydrogenated oil

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Foods to Eat, Foods to Avoid, My Brand Recommendations for the Average Foods, Part 2

One more day to go! Here are the Average Foods from the Great Physicians RX for Health & Wellness by Jordan Rubin.

Grains & Starchy Carbohydrates: (Whole grains and whole grain flours are healthiest if soaked for twelve hours before consuming)

Brown rice I love Lundberg Farms organic brown rice, and see Nourishing Traditions for a recipe where you soak the rice.
Oats You can buy organic oats at any health food store. Just don't buy the instant oats!
Corn Make sure you buy organic corn because of GMO's!
White potatoes
Whole grain pasta The best kind of pasta is Food for Life's sprouted Ezekiel pasta.
Whole grain dried cereal The best cereal is Food for Life's Ezekiel sprouted pasta.


Honey Our family's favorite honey is Really Raw Honey!
Stevia You can find organic stevia at any health food store.
Organic dehydrated cane juice I buy Rapunzel's Rapadura, and Wholesome Sweeteners makes a good organic dehydrated cane juice as well.
Maple syrup You can find organic maple syrup at any health food store, just make sure it's organic, as conventional varieties contain high amounts of formaldehyde!

Beverages (Organic)

Pasteurized vegetable juices R.W. Knudsen Organic and Santa Cruz Organic make good pasteurized veggie juices.
Pasteurized fruit juices (not from concentrate) Same goes for fruit juices- just make sure it doesn't say "from concentrate."
Beer and wine in moderation (organic and or/unpasteurized)
Fresh ground coffee (organic is best, but limit to one cup per day)


Healthy popcorn (easy to make homemade, see a recipe in Nourishing Traditions)
Baked corn chips Guiltless Gourmet makes good baked corn chips, but the best are the ones fresh from your own oven! I love making them with Food for Life's sprouted corn tortillas!