8 Food Products I Love Right Now (because I’m fickle and, any day, I may change my mind)

IMG_20131016_111405Organic tart cherry juice concentrate. This is from Dynamic Health. I alternate (or mix) it with Country Spoon, which is thicker but not as tasty (seems to be unavailable on Amazon at the moment). I drink 1 – 2 tbs of concentrate in water a few hours before sleep. It’s supposed to be a wonderful source of melatonin, but I find it really helps my pain. Montmorency cherries are the best and you want tart cherries, (e.g., Montmorency and Balaton) and not sweet cherries (e.g., Bing, Lambert, Rainier), although both varieties have healing benefits.

IMG_20131016_105812 (1)Turmeric! A potent anti-inflammatory. I put it in and on everything. Well, almost everything ~ it can get a bit bitter. But it disappears into soups and is wonderful in things like stir fries and curries.

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Flax oil. I’ve been using it on steamed veg to replace butter and on salads with balsamic vinegar. Yum!

IMG_20131016_110439I put this jam on the crackers my husband makes me with some cashew/ walnut/ almond butter. I originally bought it for these almond cookies (they would have been delicious if we hadn’t burned the bottoms). Ingredients = organic wild berries, organic apple juice concentrate, natural fruit pectin, ascorbic acid. No refined sugar.

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After reading about Dr. Cheney’s home brew on Health Rising, I started to drink this cocktail in the morning to increase my blood volume and, hopefully, my blood pressure and maybe alleviate some symptoms (I feel no different, of course, but I’m still doing it to get some salt and fluids into me). He recommends 3 to 8 glasses a day, but I’m still only doing one in the morning. Nu-Salt (called “No Salt” on the links) is potassium chloride, plus less than 1% of cream of tartar, silicon dioxide and natural flavor. I haven’t investigated an alternative potassium source without those added ingredients (I especially try to avoid “natural flavor”). I was originally using packets of regular table salt (packets are conveniently about 1/8 tsp, which is what the recipe calls for), but the ingredients are: salt, tricalcium phosphate, dextrose, potassium iodide, and sodium bicarbonate. Then my husband found these Real Salt packets at Whole Foods. Ingredients = Ancient Sea Salt. Excellent.

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Speaking of salt, I really like Herbamare seasoning salt. It has no MSG! I can’t quite believe it, but I’m hoping the ingredients don’t lie. It is salty and herby and it’s big enough to last the next five years! Ingredients = All organic sea salt,celery, leek, cress, onion, chives, parsley, lovage, garlic, basil, marjoram, rosemary, thyme, kelp.

IMG_20131016_110246Now that I am eating legumes, but not eating refined sugar or soy, Soy-Free Vegenaise fills the mayo niche for tuna, salads, sandwiches, wraps etc. I wish the jar was about half the size because I don’t use a lot of it and wind up throwing it out before it is empty, but, once in a while, it hits the spot. Ingredients = Expeller-pressed high-oleic safflower oil, filtered water, brown rice syrup, apple cider vinegar, pea protein, sea salt mustard flour, lemon juice concentrate.

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When my mother was visiting, she helped me with some recipes that could satisfy my chocolate craving and use the cacao powder I got for my birthday (thank you, E and G!). Both recipes are from Elana’s Pantry and both can be eaten right out of the freezer. They are both gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free, egg-free, and refined sugar-free. The brownies are also nut free (although the next time I make them, I want to add walnuts). I can’t believe how good they are (probably because my palate has changed. While making my brother try one, I said, “I can’t really remember what real brownies taste like…” And, with an unswallowed mouthfull of my healthy brownie, he replied, “Much, much better.” :D) Here is the recipe ~ we substituted coconut sugar for the xylitol. When they come out of the oven, they are quite cakey, but when I froze them, it made them more fudgey = more yummy.

The fudge balls were much better than I anticipated (see? There are only two left!). We used pecans instead of walnuts because that is what I had on hand and I rolled some of mine in coconut and some in the bitter cacao powder, which nicely offset the richness inside.

Honorable mention goes to the homemade veggie broth, chicken broth and beef bone broth that my husband made after I decided that ALL store-bought broth and stock has MSG and nasty stuff ~ even the Kitchen Basics, which I’d relied on for so long. He froze them in individual servings, so I can just take one out, put it in a pot and add whatever veg and seasoning I want. I would have included a picture, but they’re not too attractive.

Stay tuned, I will write about the new doctor when I have the energy. He didn’t look at my list, of course, but he listened to me talk for an hour and a half, which was the longest I’ve talked in over a year!

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