MEDITERRANEAN QUINOA CASSEROLE
2 and 1/2 cups cooked cup quinoa (approx. 1 cup dry)*
1 and 1/2 cups cooked brown lentils (approx. 1/2 cup dry)**
1 large yellow onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
10 ounces fresh baby spinach
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
2 medium size eggs
1/2 cup plain, non-fat Greek yogurt (optional)
6 ounces crumbled feta cheese (I used peppered feta)
1/2 cup fresh dill (or 2 teaspoons dried dill)
1/2 teaspoon salt
pinch of black pepper
Start by warming the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic and the onion and cook for about 3 minutes. Then add the spinach and stir together. Cover the skillet with a lid and allow to cook for 5 minutes, removing the lid to stir half way through. Once all of the spinach is wilted, remove from the skillet and set aside on a plate lined with paper towels. This will help absorb some of the excess moisture.
Preheat the oven to 375°F and grease a 9 x 13” casserole dish. Combine the cooked quinoa, lentils, spinach mixture and tomatoes in a large bowl and set aside. In a separate large bowl, combine the yogurt (if using), eggs, feta, dill, and salt & pepper then stir together.
Next add the quinoa mixture to the bowl with the eggs and feta and mix until everything is evenly coated. Pour the mixture into the casserole dish and bake in the oven for 35 to 40 minutes, until light golden brown on top.
Allow to cool for at least ten minutes then serve hot and enjoy!
*Leftovers can be stored in airtight container for up to 3 days. To save time, you can use precooked lentils and quinoa or cook them in advance.
Author: Michelle, Thrifty Diva
Gluten Free Golden Corn Muffins
These Gluten Free Golden Corn Muffins are so soft and moist, you may never make regular cornbread muffins again!
Author: Katie Kiely
A perfect end of the summer treat
Recipe type: Vegan, Gluten-free, Dairy-free, Sugar-free, Yeast-free, Corn-free, Grain-fre
Prep time: 15 mins
Cook time: 90 mins
Total time: 1 hour 45 mins
Serves: 8 muffins, 8 servings
These gluten free, flourless cookies bring together some of my favorite s'more flavors
As always, if you need to be gluten free for health reasons, please make sure all of your ingredients are gluten free.
Add fewer or more chocolate chips and marshmallows according to your tastes.
If you use natural peanut butter, you may need to add oil to the cookie dough mixture. I like to use coconut oil.
I use salted peanut butter. If you use unsalted peanut butter, you may want to add a dash of salt.
Fat cells create chemical signals that cause inflammation, especially when the person is eating a high calorie or highly inflammatory diet. Not only are extra calories stored as fat, but the role of fat becomes more than just storage of extra calories; fat cells start to manufacture inflammatory mediators. As more weight gain occurs, more inflammation is triggered. Research as shown that as peoples weight increases, so do their levels of the inflammatory, marker CRP, C-reactive protein. Even in children obesity is accompanied by metabolic changes including elevated inflammatory markers, high blood pressure and high cholesterol! The good news is that as people lose weight and the BMI decreases, markers of inflammation can and usually do also decrease.
Inflammation is an internal process that usually occurs in response to injury or physical trauma. The initiating insult may be physical, chemical (severe allergic reaction) or biological. Sometimes inflammation can occur acutely, but it may also evolve into a chronic problem.
The word “inflammation” comes from the Latin inflammare, meaning, “to set on fire.” The cardinal signs of inflammation are redness, heat, swelling, and pain. These signs may be seen at certain times, but not necessarily always present or all together. In a best-case healing scenario, acute inflammation leads to repair and healing. It is when the inflammatory response is abnormal, exaggerated, or prolonged, such as in poor lifestyle habits, that problems can occur.
Acute inflammation is characterized by joint pain and stiffness; redness; swollen joints that are painful to the touch; loss of function; and possible flu- like symptoms such as fever, chills, decreased appetite, and fatigue. Inflammatory substances produced by the body may irritate the joints and wear down the cartilage leading to arthritic changes in the joints themselves. Add to that the weight gain that is often times present, and the hips, knees, ankles and spine all begin to experience degenerative/arthritic changes.
Inflammation can also affect internal organs, especially in and or contributing to, autoimmune diseases, which lead to a state of chronic inflammation. Depending on the affected location, inflammation can contribute to high blood pressure, asthma attacks, diarrhea, cardiovascular disease and more. Inflammation plays a role in the development and progression of coronary artery disease, a type of cardiovascular disease. When inflammation occurs in the coronary arteries, it can trigger a series of events that can lead to the deposit of plaque within the arteries, heart attack and stroke.
Type 2 diabetes, obesity, and insulin resistance are closely intertwined with inflammation. Research shows that people with metabolic syndrome have higher blood levels of the inflammatory marker C-reactive protein (CRP).
Metabolic syndrome is a constellation of risk factors that increase one's risk of heart disease, stroke and diabetes. The signs and symptoms of metabolic syndrome include increased fat around the mid-section (often times coming on slowly and seemingly impossible to lose) high blood pressure, elevated blood sugar or insulin resistance, increased triglycerides, decreased levels of HDL (“good cholesterol”).
The Fit Fun & Fabulous, At Any Age Program was specifically written and designed to stop Metabolic Syndrome at its source, inflammation. We first measure the important biomarkers of aging so we have a Biological Age base line. That is right, there is a difference between your biological age and your chronological age. The anti-inflammatory lifestyle of the Fit, Fun & Fabulous Program can help you to become measurably younger than your chronological age! AND you can feel Fabulous in the process!
Begin your anti-inflammatory lifestyle today with the Fit, Fun & Fabulous Program! And make sure you watch those numbers from blood pressure to blood sugar to your waist circumference, things are about to change!
* This blog is composed of information from the Fit Fun & Fabulous book along with The Holistic Truth Newsletter February 2017, Volume 2 Issue 11.
Dr. Kathleen Hartford, a licensed Integrated Wellness Practitioner, Healthy Aging Expert, and NET licensed specialist, has dedicated herself to improving her patients’ physical, emotional and spiritual health and wellness. The author of FIT, FUN & FABULOUS AT ANY AGE, Dr. Hartford speaks all over the world to promote understanding among the healing disciplines and to help people reclaim their health and vitality.
For more than two decades, Dr. Kathleen A. Hartford has treated and nurtured thousands of individuals through her integrated wellness approaches. As patients reclaim their health, she coaches them on how to maintain their youthful vitality with practical guidance on nutrition, exercise and stress management. Read more...
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