A blog to give you the real info on diet,dress, and exercise for dancers. I'll test it before you drop your hard earned cash on it.

How to Sprout Beans at Home…and why you should!


Legumes are an extremely important part of a vegetarian or vegan diet providing a very healthy protein and carbohydrate source while at the same time giving the body what is known as the “second meal effect” or “lentil effect” which blunts blood sugar surges the day after consumption - something that can be very important for those who are vegetarian or vegan because they tend to consume more carbohydrates - which raise blood sugar - than their meat eating counterparts.

With that said legumes also contain anti-nutrients (compounds that interfere with nutrient absorption). As well as natural insecticides and enzyme inhibitors that can cause us digestive problems. That is why raw beans should be soaked before consumption (especially kidney beans!), but sprouting can be even better. Sprouting neutralizes those hard to digest compounds and can make nutrients and vitamins more bioavailable.

Dried beans are far more nutritious than their canned counterparts and are best sprouted but if you can’t sprout then soak!

The instructions below are taken from vegitariantimes.com and have never let me down!

HOW TO SOAK BEANS

PLACE in a large glass bowl or mason jar, and cover with warm, filtered water (about a 2:1 ratio) and about ½ tsp. Celtic sea salt. Cover with a light cloth for desired time.

RINSE food thoroughly and drain.

HOW TO SPROUT BEANS AND LENTILS

GET a quart-sized (or larger) mason jar. Remove the solid middle insert of the lid, and cut a piece of cheesecloth or breathable mesh to fit inside.

FILL one-third of the jar with beans, and fill the rest of the jar with warm, filtered water and about ½ tsp Celtic sea salt. Screw the lid on with cheesecloth or breathable mesh screen in place.

SOAK For soaking times, see table below.

DRAIN/RINSE Remove the mesh insert of the lid, and replace with metal insert. Pour the soaking water out of the jar, fill with fresh water, replace lid, and rinse well by shaking jar. Replace the metal insert with the mesh lid again, and drain.

INVERT the jar and lay at an angle so that air can circulate, and the water can drain off. Allow to sit in the light.

REPEAT this process, rinsing every few hours, or at least twice daily.

WAIT In 1 to 4 days, the sprouts will be ready. When ready, rinse sprouts well, drain, and store in a jar (with the solid part of the lid replaced) in the fridge.

ENJOY within 2 to 3 days cook as you would canned beans.


****you need not wait for the sprouts to grow as soon as they begin sprouting use them!


FOOD SOAKING TIME (hours) SPROUTING TIME (days)
Adzuki Beans 8-1 4
Black Beans 8-12 3
Chickpeas/Garbanzo 8 2-3
Lentils 7 2-3
Mung Beans 8-12 4

Add Some Spice to your Life

Satisfy your palate with real flavor!

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When our palate starts craving some interesting flavor all too often we take the easy way out and give it sugar. We all know sugar tastes really nice but so can spice!

If you’ve gotten in a meal rut and your bored with the same old flavors try a new spice or spice combination, instead of carbs and sugar. Wouldn’t you rather have flavor and satisfying complex taste instead of the low quality fats and sugars that we turn to when we lose inspiration in the kitchen.

For a couple of fun combinations try…

Cinnamon, nutmeg and black pepper on chicken. (recipe later this week)

Yogurt with rose extract, cinnamon, nutmeg and golden raisins (recipe will posted tomorrow)

Lemongrass with ginger and coriander on veggies ( Safeway sells a nice lemongrass paste.)

Cooking Oils Part 2

So what oils should we be cooking with?

Well that depends on what your doing with them. These oils are listed roughly in descending order based on their oxidation potential with the “no heat” oils being less stable and more easily oxidized. Oxidized oils deplete the bodies antioxidants and can lead to damage and inflammation, so don’t make your bodies clean up crews work overtime if they don’t have to! Just switch cooking oils.

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Cooking oils and recommended usage: For very high heat I’d recommend a little…
Coconut oil
ghee
butter
tallow
Avocado oil (cold pressed is best)
palm oil (preferably red palm because of its high CoQ10 and vitamin E content) These are most stable at higher heats and when frying (which in general I would recommend sparingly because of the increased production of AGE’s [advanced glycation end products] in the foods being fried - AGE’s fittingly enough make you age faster and have been linked to cancer and inflammation related diseases). *It is important to keep in mind that carnosine found in meat has some protective effects against AGE formation. For lower heat
any of the high heat oils
olive oil
macadamia nut oil
fish oil To use on special occasion and at low heat (or better yet NO heat)
walnut oil
sesame oil
flax seed oil Please store all your oil in dark bottles (glass is best) in a cool, dry, dark place to prevent oxidation and rancidity. As a reminder from Part I and a quick reference we especially want to avoid all industrial seed oils and oils high in omega-6 fatty acids. These include
safflower
sunflower
canola
rapeseed
cottonseed
vegetable
soy *These statements have not been evaluated or approved by the FDA.

Yoga Pose of the Day: Reclined Twist

To Cleanse, Relax and Align

… Whether you just had a weekend warriors three day weekend or you just had a long weekend of sitting driving and stressing followed by a week of more of the same, this pose can really help you loosen up, relax and cleanse the digestive system. To begin lay flat on your back legs down arms by your sides. Draw your right knee into your chest, open your arms into a T with both shoulders down and then bring the right knee across the body and onto the floor on the left side of the body. From here look over the right shoulder keeping both shoulders against the floor. If your knee cannot touch the floor feel free to put a bolster or block under the knee for support so that you can keep your shoulders in contact with the floor. For more of a stretch extend the right leg as shown below. If you are still having trouble relaxing into this pose you can instead from the starting position draw both knees into the chest and drop both of them to the left side as show below. Taking the proper variation for the way your body feel today and using bolsters and blocks where necessary will make this a relaxing and enjoyable pose for most anyone.

Cooking Oils Part 1 

Vegetable oils shown to increase coronary heart disease… Here is a breakdown of why.

image taken from recipe-finder.com

Without writing an entire tome on this masive topic here is a brief summary of what you should know regarding vegetable oils and your health.

According to a study done by the Canadian Medical Association Journal, certain vegetable oils including corn, sunflower and safflower oils, can increase your likelihood of death from coronary artery disease.

Many of our vegetable oils on the market today (including those listed above) are high in omega-6 fatty acids (the bad kind) that are easily oxidized during the cooking process and in the body. These oxidized fats deplete our bodies of antioxidants, cause oxidative stress in the body and lead to inflammation. It is recommended that we try to consume omega-6 fatty acids in a one-to-one ratio with omega-3 fatty acids (the good kind), but the current American diet is heavily skewed towards omega-6 – some estimates say the average is around 20:1 because of our heavy reliance on industrial seed oils (another name for all of the varieties of vegitable oils listed on this page).

For this reason Prevention Health suggests that we consume canola and soybean oils which are higher in omega-3 fatty acids. However, the majority of canola and soybean oils are GMO, and commercially derived using hexane gas (which I might add is limited by the EPA because of its potential carcinogenic properties).

According to an article by Slate, “The FDA does not currently impose a ceiling on hexane residue in soy foods” they also state that researchers have found hexane residue in soy products. If there is in fact hexane residue in hexane extracted soy bean oil it is reasonable to assume that there is also hexane residue in hexane derived canola oils.

So what oils should I be using and for what purposes?

For more on that stay tuned for part 2 of Cooking Oils

For more posts like this please go to my other blog dancersdish.wordpress.com

Meal Plan Recipes: Spaghetti Squash “Noodles” 1 

Paleo, Vegan, Vegetarian, Grain/Gluten Free, Soy Free, Nut Free, Dairy Free

image taken from steamykitchen.com

preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Cut in half lengthwise and seed, place cut side down in baking dish and add 1/2 cup water. Bake for 30 min or until tender. Use fork to scrape out stringy flesh. Use as you would a pasta noodle. Great with pesto, lemon and capers, or your favorite tomato sauce.