Friday, August 25, 2017

On-the-Go Muffins Tin Recipes

Heyyyyy!

Here’s another round-up of easy, on-the-go meal prep ideas. This time, all of the recipes are in muffin form, so you can just grab-and-go when you’re in the need of a quick meal or snack. These “Meals in a Muffin” are also super convenient for kid’s lunches and after-school snacks. I hope they inspire your meal prep this weekend!

Breakfast

Customizable Protein-Packed Oatmeal Cups

With 11 grams of protein in each cup, these customizable protein-packed oatmeal cups make for the perfect breakfast on the go. Just customize, bake, and then keep a batch in the freezer so you always have a healthy breakfast waiting for you! 

Cranberry & Cacao Nib Protein Muffins

I mean, who wouldn’t love starting their day off with a little chocolate? These muffins are full of protein and very satisfying. Plus, the ingredients are simple and straightforward, so you’re more than likely to have everything in your kitchen!

Peanut Butter Banana Jelly Filled Baked Oatmeal Cups

These Peanut Butter Banana Jelly Filled Baked Oatmeal Cups combined so many nutritious and delicious ingredients! These can be made ahead, stored in the refrigerator or frozen. Theyre prfect for breakfast or a yummy snack!

Lunch

Macaroni and Cheese Cupcakes

Well, hello, macaroni and cheese cupcakes! These mac and cheese muffins look absolutely delicious and couldn’t be easier to make! Just cook your noodles, mix the remaining ingredients, and pop in the oven to bake! Lunch is served!

Easy Buffalo Chicken Egg Muffins

What makes these muffins so great? No matter what diet you follow, you can personalize these muffins to your preferences, including grain-free, gluten-free, dairy free, nut-free, seed-free, and sugar-free. 

Eggs Nestled in Bacon

Individual eggs wrapped in bacon? Yes, please! These muffins are super easy to assemble and the ingredient options are endless – add cheese, herbs, hot sauce, and more! Serve with breakfast potatoes, toasted English muffin, or piece of toast for a complete meal!

Customizable Egg Muffins

This egg muffin recipe actually encourages you to get creative and play around with various ingredients until you find the perfect combination for you and your family. You choose your favorite ingredients to create an egg muffin that appeals to you!

Dinner

Turkey Potpies

Wholesome and comforting, these Turkey Potpies are unbeatable. Make them ahead of time for a seriously fast dinner that the whole family will enjoy.

Broccoli Cheddar Quinoa Bites

Broccoli Cheddar Quinoa Bites are bite-sized, protein-packed muffins made with quinoa, broccoli, and cheddar cheese.  They’re gluten-free, easy to make, and great for kids! You can even make the quinoa ahead of time, so the whole mixture comes together in 15-20 minutes. 

Zucchini Pizza Muffins

There’s nothing better than pizza, am I right?! The zucchini pizza muffins are baked with coconut flour and flavored as you would your favorite type of pizza. There also gluten-free and low-fat, so there’s no guilt involved!  

Meatloaf Muffins

These Meatloaf Muffins can come to together quickly! Combine ingredients, press into a muffin tin, and bake! Easiest that! Pro-tip: Top with whipped potatoes for the ultimate Meatloaf Muffin dinner.
Question of the Day

What’s your favorite meal in muffin form?

The post On-the-Go Muffins Tin Recipes appeared first on Carrots 'N' Cake.



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Finding Balance After A Lifelong Eating Disorder

It’s Friday, everyone! And that means another Primal Blueprint Real Life Story from a Mark’s Daily Apple reader. If you have your own success story and would like to share it with me and the Mark’s Daily Apple community please contact me here. I’ll continue to publish these each Friday as long as they keep coming in. Thank you for reading!

 I clearly remember my first experience with binge eating. I was only about ten years old, but my home life was in chaos. My dad had recently lost his business and declared bankruptcy, and we had to sell our home and almost all of our belongings. The turmoil was hard for my parents, but was absolutely traumatic for my younger sister and me. I remember waking up during the night and hearing them fighting over the situation. My sister and I were too young to understand the details, but old enough to know it was really, really bad.

At some point during that very rough time, I bought a bag of candy. This was an unusual occurrence for me because for most of my early life I was not allowed to eat sugary foods, and especially not candy. Once I had that bag of candy in my possession, though, I was obsessed. On that same day, within the course of an hour and with nobody watching me, I ate every last piece. For that brief time, I felt safe and happy. A drive in my brain was turned on that I had never experienced before. I had to eat it all and right now.

Not surprisingly, eating all that sugar in one sitting made me sick. I had a terrible stomach ache that lasted the rest of the day. I knew exactly what had caused it, but that didn’t deter me from wanting more. As soon as I found a way to get access to candy again, I followed the same patterns of sneaking it into my room and settling in for a binge that provided comfort for a fleeting amount of time.

Sadly, I battled binge-eating disorder for about the next two decades. Whenever things evened out in my life, it was a habit that faded into the distance. But, in times of increased family stress or other life events involving change or stress, I turned to binging as my source of comfort. At that time, I didn’t know that my problem had a name, but I was ashamed of the habit and never spoke to anyone about it.

Candy and sugar were always my choice of poison, and my health suffered as a consequence. As I moved from childhood to adolescence, my hormones were unbalanced and I developed signs of polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) in my early teenage years. I never had a normal menstrual cycle and I experienced depression, problems with weight management, and acne.

resize_Carrie Forrest 2004Later, once I was in college, I started hormonal birth control. While the pill helped control the symptoms of PCOS, starting this prescription medication also initiated migraines that later became a chronic problem. My eating habits were still terrible, and that was the age when “fat-free” processed junk was marketed as health food, so my diet consisted of skim milk and sugar cereal, salads with fat-free dressing, a baked potato with fat-free cottage cheese, and giant bowls of fat-free chocolate ice cream.

As my health problems started to add up throughout my 20s, I finally started to make the connections between food and health once I hit my early 30s. The final straw when I realized things had to change was when my family physician suggested I try a daily prescription medication originally created to treat seizures to see if it would help my migraines. I was horrified that this was my fate, and at such a relatively young age. I was also diagnosed with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, an autoimmune thyroid condition, along with multiple thyroid nodules.

There were further challenges ahead. Around 2010, I discovered veganism and thought that a 100% plant-based diet was the answer to all my problems. This strict approach that excluded all animal products seemed to work well at first. I lost weight and was feeling energetic with no migraines. I built a business creating recipes for the healthy, vegan community.

My thyroid disease took a serious turn in 2012 when I was diagnosed with thyroid cancer. I had surgery to remove the tumor, but had a very hard time adjusting to life without a thyroid gland. I started experiencing symptoms including chronic skin hives, fatigue, depression, and increased food sensitivities. I also became overly vigilant about my food choices and developed a type of eating disorder known as orthorexia. My binge habits returned after several years of remission. I realized the vegan diet was no longer serving my needs.

I wrote a blog post in June of 2014, where I shared with my readers that I was expanding my diet outside of a strict plant-based approach. It took a lot of soul-searching to get myself in the right mental space to admit that I could no longer identify as a vegan. It was a very rough transition that essentially had me starting from scratch in building my identity, community, and business.

resize_Carrie Forrest 2017A friend had referred me to Mark’s Daily Apple around this time, and I also got a copy of The Primal Blueprint. So much of what Mark wrote made common sense to me, especially the comparison of Grok to his modern counterpart. It became clear to me that Mark’s work is more inclusive than exclusive, acknowledging that everyone’s needs are different and updating the primal definition as the community and body of evidence around nutritional science evolves.

In just the last 2 years of so, I began working with functional medicine physicians and practitioners who helped me develop a plan to address the root causes of my health problems and figure out the foods that would nourish and sustain me. I also consulted an eating disorders specialist to address some of the unhealthy beliefs I had around food.

Now, fast forward to 2017, I feel like a primal “clean eating” approach is the best description of a flexible, real food way I choose to eat. I enjoy an abundance of colorful, nutrient-rich foods that I find support my health and are absolutely delicious. As a result, my overall inflammation has decreased tremendously and my health issues are much more manageable. The crazy blood sugar swings I used to experience without a balanced approach to my nutrition are 100% gone and I feel satisfied and wonderfully nourished after eating this way. My hormones have restored and balanced out naturally, and I rarely experience bouts of depression or the desire to binge-eat anymore. In fact, I can’t remember the last time I had that urge – it has been at least 3 years.

Finally, I learned my lesson that my ideal diet is much less about perfection or following a strict plan, but doing my best each day to eat foods that nourish and satisfy me. I’m so grateful to Mark and his team for all the education, recipes, produces, and resources that support the primal way of living in the modern world. I am so excited for the Primal Kitchen restaurants! I continue to share gluten- and dairy-free recipes, plus updates on my health journey on my blog, so please visit me there and keep in touch.

Carrie Forrest, MPH in Nutrition
Clean Eating Kitchen

The post Finding Balance After A Lifelong Eating Disorder appeared first on Mark's Daily Apple.



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Reducing Sugar Intake Improves Health Quickly, Researchers Find

We know sugar is not exactly the healthiest thing we can consume, but a new study underscores just how dramatically and speedily eliminating it from our diets can affect our well-being.

The study, which will be published in the September issue of Gastroenterology, looked at obese children who habitually consumed sugar (fructose). The children’s sugar consumption was restricted for nine days without a change in overall calories; the sugar calories they had been consuming were replaced by complex carbohydrates.

In that short amount of time — just nine days — the children showed less conversion of sugar to fat, a reduction in liver fat, and improvement of insulin, glucose and lipid metabolism. The findings indicate that reducing sugar intake even short-term may lower the risk for obesity, fatty liver disease, metabolic syndrome, cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes.

“The magnitude of the metabolic changes in only nine days was surprising,” the study’s lead author, Jean-Marc Schwarz, PhD, a professor at Touro University California, tells Healthy Eats.

The results suggest that fructose – specifically the conversion of sugar to fat (de novo lipgenesis, or DNL) — disrupts liver metabolism, Schwarz says, adding that rapid reduction of DNL may drive the speedy metabolic improvements that occurred when sugar intake was restricted.

The key takeaway from the study for consumers? “Stay away from sugary drinks, juice and food with added sugar,” which can be found in many processed foods, Schwarz advises. “This will improve both your glucose and fat metabolism.”

And the improvements may occur more quickly than you might expect.

Amy Reiter is a writer and editor based in New York. Her work has appeared in publications including The Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Daily Beast, Glamour and Marie Claire, as well as Salon, where she was a longtime editor and senior writer. In addition to contributing to Healthy Eats, she blogs for Food Network’s FN Dish.



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Five Of My Favorite Nutrition Books

^^ Spinach, peanut butter, oat, banana, and milk smoothie. Not vegan, but plant-based!

I’m sure many of you have heard about the documentary What The Health by now. Along the lines of Food Inc. (which I love) and Forks Over Knives, What The Health promotes a plant-based, vegan diet as the be-all and end-all right way to eat. I have had several friends watch it and immediately proclaim themselves vegan for life.

I am not a fan of the documentary because it leans on cherry-picked studies to scare people into avoiding ALL animal products FOREVER. I stumbled upon this article while digging around online and completely agree with these sentiments by the author, Julia Belluz:

“Andersen’s film fails on several accounts, and cranks the food fear sirens to irresponsibly high levels. He mischaracterizes and overstates what we know about how particular foods drive disease, by offering a narrow view of the science with cherry-picked studies to support his views. He also seeks out a slew of vegan and animal rights–friendly health professionals rather than a more balanced roster of experts, and engages in silly gotcha journalism to suggest organizations like the American Diabetes Association intentionally hide the truth about diet.

Most of us could stand to eat more fruits and vegetables and less meat and dairy, and a plant-based diet is a healthy choice for many people. But with messages like “drinking milk causes cancer” or “eating eggs is as bad as smoking cigarettes”, this film isn’t going to right our health problems. It confuses what’s known in science and obscures the truths of nutrition that could actually help us live healthier lives.”

I am not here to knock vegans or plants.  We should ALL be eating a plant-based diet whether or not we also choose to also eat meat, dairy, fish, and eggs. Like Belluz states, most people could reduce their meat consumption. Most people could and should eat more plants. And reduce sugar. And convenience food. And focus on real food. It’s the ratio of plants to all of the other stuff that is most important in my book. Plants should outnumber the rest by far. But animal products are not inherently poison. This kind of food fear talk is how eating disorders and orthorexia are born.

I asked one of my friends if she would like to borrow some of my nutrition books that advocate a plant-based diet but also include a balanced approach to eating sustainable and humanely-raised animal foods like wild salmon, grass-fed beef, and pastured eggs. These were the five I suggested.

SuperFoods HealthStyle

This was the book that turned me on to nutrition and got me off artificial sweeteners and diet foods as I began my weight loss journey. The authors focus on health as defined not by what we shouldn’t be eating, but what we should be. They use research and practical, sound advice to convince the reader why a certain set of “superfoods” are the healthiest options to form the foundation of a healthy diet. The book is an easy read, too.

The 150 Healthiest Foods On The Earth

Like SuperFoods HealthStyle, this book lists the world’s 150 healthiest foods (per the title) and has a lot of information in between. It’s a great reference book because each food has its own page, and there is bonus information as well as articles between them. It is broken down by category and even includes coffee and wine (yay!). You’ll finish it with the confidence that a diverse diet is the one to rule them all.

What To Eat

Marion Nestle is one of the most respected food writers, and her book is a great place to start for someone new to the nutrition world. She explains the basics and dips into more controversial territory and does a great job explaining food labels and debunking health claims from big companies. In a world where the nutrition industry is getting more and more complicated, this book will give you the knowledge to grocery shop with confidence.

Eating Well For Optimum Health

Perhaps the crunchiest of the bunch, I loved reading Weil’s book. I read it very early on (probably a decade ago) and it might feel a bit dated at this point, but I loved all the personal stories inside and reading the book left me wanting to go make a salad packed with greens, lentils, jicama, herbs, nuts, sprouts, dates, lemon juice, and olive oil. This quote from the book says it all, “My conviction is that healthy food and delicious food are not mutually exclusive; the concept of “eating well” must embrace both the health-promoting and the pleasure-giving aspects of food.” I’d like to have a meal with him!

In Defense Of Food

And finally, one many of you have probably heard of and read. This is probably Michael Pollan’s most famous book because it’s easy to read, short, and just so….reasonable. We all know the quote, “Eat real food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” and this book is the longer version of that quote. Pollan challenges us to live like our grandparents did, and his simplified ideology in a crowded nutrition industry makes everyday applications easier to digest (pun intended).

What is the best nutrition or health book you’ve ever read?

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