Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Blessings from Positive Eating!

Hello All,

This is a great season! We get together with the ones we love and enjoy a time where we embrace giving to one another. This time of year, every one of us seems to believe in peace, harmony and love. The best part is we celebrate these holidays with food and laughter, two powerful forces that nourish us on every level. Laugh and eat too much at the same time and our heart becomes so excited it sometimes burns :)

Positive Eating wants to thank all of you who followed this blog throughout the year. Getting it back going and maintaining it is a joy and I look forward to contributing each and every week. Whether you celebrate Christmas, Kwanzaa or Chanukah...I am wishing you great food, time with wonderful friends and loving laughter as 2009 comes to a close.

Stay Positive,


Wednesday, December 16, 2009

The "Expert" Advice we all need

Hello Positive Eaters,

Since I started this blog, I try to remind all of you that I am not an "expert." I am just on a journey to make the act of eating a positive experience for myself and the people I come in contact with. Given the holiday season, you will soon see all sorts of "experts" coming out of the woodwork offering all sorts of "expert" advice. These "experts" want to tell you all about your body and how you should treat it.

I hold a high amount of regard for people who possess a large body of knowledge and wisdom. This displays a commitment and enthusiasm towards a specific subject of interest. I also believe that sharing this knowledge and enthusiam is important for the world. However, holding onto a body of knowledge and using it as a source of power to control people's actions and behaviors is absurd.

This idea was first propogated by Plato, who felt that an intellectual elite (meaning himself and his friends) were to be privy to truth and knowledge and responsible for disseminating this at "appropriate times" to the general population. This may or may not work out. I am not sure...I unfortunately did not fall into the ranks of the elite and do not know Who Shot JFK or if extra terrestials actual run the whole show.

I do know this. The intelligence of the human organism is provided in its entirety at birth. The more we learn about ourselves and the more we tune into our own bodies the more we will know how to treat it. This is not to say ignore the work and words of experts. I read and fill myself with their knowledge regularly. I use this is a pathway from brain back into my body. Real wisdom comes from learning and applying it to yourself as an individual.

With nourishment it is important to always make your eating choices "your eating choice". How often do you hear someone say, "I've been eating seaweed all week because Dr. Octagon says it will help me lose weight." Check in with your body...maybe a piece of advice inspires a choice...only your body can tell you if it is right for you. A person is always operating from their own plane. A priest will tell you to seek God, a doctor will give you a prescription or surgery, a nutrititionist will tell you to eat healthier, an energy worker will tell you to balance your chakras all for the same problem. The truth is all these experts can be "right" at the same is you that will decide the path that works best for you. The most powerful educators see themselves as guides and not as an instructor. Even geniuses were once pupils...such people can only be guided in a safe and positive direction. They will reach heights that no instructor can ever lead them.

You are the genius of your own organism. I hope what is written on this blog inspires you to realize this intelligence. Be safe and enjoy your journey!

Stay Positive,


Wednesday, December 9, 2009

No Egg Nog!!!!

Hi Positive Eaters,

When I was a kid the holidays were full of anticipation and excitement. For many children they are waiting to hear hoofs on the rooftop and go rushing downstairs to find presents under the tree. I was rushing past the Christmas tree and into the kitchen for that magical elixir known as egg nog!

The first glass was served up on Thanksgiving by my father in a tiny glass (that I always wished was bigger). Peppering the top of this delicous thick liquid was a sprinkling of nutmeg that seemed to make my mouth come alive. This was the ultimate positive experience with food!

Now that I try to make most of my own food...I checked out recipes for egg nog. It should come as no suprise that egg nog calls for the use of raw eggs. Well...I simply am not Rocky Balboa. The idea of cracking a couple raw eggs into pitcher with milk, sugar and spices did not sit entirely well with me.

This weekend I met a friend at the Revitalive Cafe in Newburyport and saw on their menu "No Egg Nog". This was a vegan joint so it did not suprise me. I quickly ordered a glass and asked them how to make it. It was incredible! I still need to try my hand at making it myself but after some internet research I compiled together several recipes to get the concept down and came up with one of my own. If you beat me to it let me know if it works.

3 Cups of Coconut Milk or Vanilla Soy/Almond Milk
2 Ripe Bananas
1 Vanilla Bean or a 1/2 Tablespoon Vanilla Extract
1/4 Teaspoon Nutmeg
1/4 Teaspoon Cinnamon
4 Tablespoons Agave Nectar or Maple Syrup

Blend all ingredients

I plan to make this up for myself (and maybe a few friends) while watching "It's A Wonderful Life" on a snowy December evening. Okay...I got a thing for the holidays :)

Stay Positive,


Wednesday, November 18, 2009

The Heart Attack Grill

Hi Positive Eaters,

My friend Jeff sent me a hillarious/grotesque/thought provoking/mortifying video today. As many of you know my goal is to bring as much fun and positivity to living a positive and healthy lifestyle as possible. Let's face it - we crave things that are attractive and pleasurable. We will pursue those things with reckless abandon leaving far behind the concerns of our friends, finances and especially our body.

Eating healthy is often seen as the "right" thing to do. However, it is caught with the stigma of being boring. This is simply not the case. Eating healthy makes us feel good, look attractive and brings a sense of adventure and unknown into many of of our food choices. These are all the same categories that make up a great suspense or romance novel.

The establishment in this video is attempting to stimulate all those pleasure centers with their outrageously awful menu. I watched this video and I felt sick to my stomach...however saw the humor in it as well. I will post it below and offer up several questions to ponder. I cannot wait to see what comments and emails I get regarding this.

Watch CBS News Videos Online

- Does this place get a pass because they are being truthful?
- What are your thoughts on the "you only live once" mentality?
- Should this place even be legal?
- What can healthy restaurants learn from this?
- Would you ever eat at the Heart Attack Grill

I cannot pass judgment. I used to eat a one pound hamburger and guzzle down a large milk shake every Monday just to make my friends laugh...until I landed in a real hospital.

Stay Positive,


Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Vaccination Fascination

Hi Everyone,

The flu vaccination seems to be the hip thing nowadays. Everyone is lining up to get one and the blog boards are abuzz. Everywhere I turn people are getting injections, asking about where they can get an injection or asking me if I am going to get one. I feel like I walked into a scene from the movie Requiem for a Dream (I would post a clip below...but the movie is a little too graphic for this blog).

Many people are asking me my take on the flu vaccine. Whether it be swine flu or this season's version of influenza, there is a lot of questions about the safety of the vaccine and who needs to get a shot. I am not a medical professional and am not at liberty to say who needs to be vaccinated and who does not. I will say a couple things about this matter though.

As many of you know, a vaccine contains a severely weakened or dormant version of a virus. This is injected into someone so that their body might build up the appropriate antibodies against the virus. I believe Louis Pasteur got the credit for this medical breakthrough and even won a Nobel prize for it. Vaccines are responsible for eradicating epidemics and thanks to vaccines certain diseases now only exist in history books. They truly are a medical marvel.

Many of us receive vaccines shortly after we are born and throughout our childhood. We go on to live happy lives free from the dangers of tuberculosis, polio and the measles. Today's children can expect to receive between 12 and 16 vaccinations before they reach age 13. This is up from the standard 4-6 vaccinations received commonly during the sixties and seventies.

Many of the studies done on vaccinations prove them to be perfectly safe. However, many studies are only focusing on the safety of that one particular vaccine. The most toxic chemicals in most vaccines are the preservatives used to keep the vaccines fresh since they are now mass produced (once again a difference between vaccines today and vaccines forty years ago). Many of these preservative's contain heavy metals such as mercury. The amount of preservative in one vaccine is perfectly safe....the amount of preservative in 12-16 vaccinations is up to debate. Studies regarding the safety of multiple vaccinations and their safety over a particular time span are hard to come by.

It is my belief that vaccinations are essential for certain diseases and save the lives of people in certain populations. My father, for example, is a transplant recipient and a strain of the flu could land him in the hospital. I on the other hand will not be receiving any vaccinations. The most important defense against disease is maintaining one's overall health. I work hard to maintain my immune system so that I can keep the number of vaccinations and chemicals in my body at a bare minimum.

I find it interesting that people line up to receive the flu vaccine in order to protect their health. I see no such lines outside health clubs (which would be great since I work at one!). We are far from a fruit and vegetable shortage in this country. Companies provide vaccinations for everyone of their employees, even in this down economy but they will cut health care benefits. They scoff at the idea of initiating a company wide wellness plan when profit purses are thin, yet hand out pharmaceutical company sponsored pamphlets regarding the dangers of Swine Flu (or as my friend Steve calls it Bacon Lung). There is definitely a vaccination fascination abounding within our society.

This blog is about making "health care" a fun and positive experience. I will do my part in helping to maintain your health during this cold and flu season. I will post some great immune boosting recipes along with remedies I learned from many of you. Whether you are vaccinated or not it is always important to protect your health.

Stay Positive,



If you get vaccinated for the Swine flu make sure you ask the nurse if it is okay to eat pork chops now :)

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Sweet Potato-Peanut Bisque and Pumpkin Ice Cream!

Here are two great fall recipes I've thrown together in the last couple weeks. The first one is a soup recipe that I adapted from a recipe I found in Eating Well magazine. The author was cookbook author Nancy Baggett.

The second recipe is one I came up with, spinning off my summer post on vegan ice cream. Please let me know if you try either of these. I am so happy fall is here! There are so many delicous recipes you can make with seasonal vegetables!

Sweet Potato-Peanut Bisque

2 large Sweet Potatoes
2 tablespoons Olive Oil
1 Yellow Onion
1 large Yellow Onion
3 Cups Tomato Juice (I used juice from a juicer, canned is an option as well)
1 chopped Red Pepper or chile pepper depending on how spicy you want it
2 tablespoons minced Ginger
1 teaspoon Allspice
15-20 ounces of vegetable broth
2/3 cup natural Peanut Butter
Optional 1/2 cup tomato pulp from juicer

1. Bake or steam sweet potatoes until soft and peelings fall of naturally.
2. Heat olive oil in large sauce pan and add onion. Cook until onion browns and then add garlic and ginger. Stir in juice, peppers and allspice. When mixture boils back off to a simmer.
3. Remove peelings from sweet potato. Take one potato and blend it in a blender with vegetable broth and peanut butter. Take the other potato, chop it up and add it to soup pot.
4. Combine puree and soup mixture. If you ar using the pulp from the juicer stir it in at this time as well. This is definitely a hearty soup and you are sure to enjoy it.

Coconut Pumpkin Ice Cream!

2 cans of Coconut Milk
2/3 a can of Pumpkin Puree
3/4 cup Maple Syrup
Spices: Ginger, Cloves, Cinnamon and Nutmeg or Pumpkin Pie Spice

1. Blend coconut milk, pumpkin puree and spices
2. Place in ice cream maker and add maple syrup to taste
3. Let this spin in ice cream maker for twenty five minutes or more.
4. Add to re-used and washed ice cream pint containers.

This ice cream goes great with warm ginger bread!

Stay Positive,


Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Restaurant Review: Grezzo - Raw Food in Newburyport!

Hello Positive Eaters,

The circulating buzz around a raw food restaurant in Newburyport was just too much to take. On just their third day of operation, I found myself sitting at the "bar" at their State Street location in the charming port city that acts as a second home to me.

Many people do not know what to expect when entering a raw food restaurant. I fortunately have visited several of these establishments over the the past couple years and I took immediate notice of the distinct aroma. These type of restaurants seem to manufacture their own atmosphere. More than just a distinct scent, a feeling of freshness and life just kind of hangs in the air. The walls of Grezzo are adorned with beautiful murals of painted vegetables and this merges with a distinct, sophisticated ambiance. Do not expect birkenstocks, dreadlocks and Ani Difranco blaring through the sound system, these people are here to serve you fantastic food and an amazing dining experience.

The place was empty when I walked in and I noticed many people wanted to come in and "just look at the menu." The idea of raw food is very new to New England and Grezzo does a great job of taking off the counterculture edge that can accompany the words "vegan" and "raw." The staff wear typical waitstaff attire and are extremely friendly. Within fifteen minutes the place started to fill up and a waitress named Molly was carefully explaining the wide array of local organic produce they use in their food as well as introducing them to the uniques superfoods they would experience in their different lunch choices.

I started off with a Raspberry Kombucha Spritzer. This is made like a mixed drink, except kombucha (a fermented tea product) is used rather than alcohol. Grezzo featured many organic wines and alcohol choices. Being a temperant man, I did not try any of these options. My Baby Arugula Salad was everything you would expect from a raw food place, teeming with life and amazing ingredients. A citrus based dressing drizzled locally grown Arugula and the salad featured, pickled asparagus, grapefruit, whole almonds, goji and incan berries as well as a nut based cheese. This salad could serve as an entire meal for some people.

My main entree was the Seaweed and Wild Mushroom Bistro Burger. This looked nothing like a burger but featured such incredible flavor and texture, I did not notice. This was served with dehydrated sweet potato chips. I definitely still steer towards baked chips with olive oil and sea salt...but they added an autumn color to the plate.

The woman behind the bar, Brenda, suggested a fantastic smoothie called a Goji Julius which was served thick and was almost like an entire dessert itself. The waitress Molly refused to let me leave without trying one of their chocolate cookies. This "dessert" featured raw cacao, blue green algae and peppermint oil. A must try for all those who visit Grezzo.

Before leaving, I met the owner Alissa Cohen. Alissa is an established restaurant operator and "living foods" expert. I gave her my best wishes on her new venture. I will definitely return to Grezzo and spread the word about its incredible offerings. The North Shore may finally possess its go to spot for fantastic healthy dining.

Stay Positive,


visit their website:

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Prana - The one nutrient behind everything

If you have ever been to a yoga class or seen some earthy crunchy types walking around you've may encountered this word, Prana, before. This is not some mystical cult or voodoo magic that is practiced by a secret society. It simply means energy. Energy is the one thing that exists and has always existed, as far as we can tell. There is no explanation for it, energy is just there and always will be! I like the word Prana, because it sounds cool and I got admit I own a couple of those shirts with the cool logo I posted above.

The Kripalu Psychologist Stephen Cope describes Prana like this:

Prana is life force - the stuff of those million, zillion stars circling and exploding. Human beings receive it directly into the body through the air. We take it in other ways as well - through live foods such as fresh fruits and vegetables, through fresh water, through living, breathing, trees and vegetation, and, if we are open to it through the love of other people and creatures. We probably take it in more mysterious ways, too, I think - through music, the sound of inspiring words, and perhaps through beautiful sights

Prana - is the first and most essential nutrient. In many ways Prana is what this blog is all about. As Mr. Cope said we can get prana from eating fresh and living foods but also through a myriad of other ways. Make sure you are getting your daily reccomended dose of Prana each and every day. Consider the amount of energy that is pulsing through your food when you are packing or picking out a lunch. Ask yourself if you are actually breathing in enough air each and every day. And for Prana's sake laugh and give someone a hug...even if it is just your dog....or a tree...just do it! Okay, maybe I've been wearing these Prana shirt's a little too much but I guarantee it will make you feel better.

Stay Positive,


Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Wherever you are is a great place to start!

Hello Positive Eaters,

I am so glad you decided to read my blog today. Discovering the depth of what is possible is the most fascinating subject to me. We often look to athletes and geniuses to witness amazing feats of both body and mind. Usain Bolt, the great sprinter, just ran 100 meters in 9.69 seconds! We see the leaps being made in technology on a daily basis and marvel at what human minds are able to think up.

What we often forget is that these possibilities are within ourselves as well. Within each person's DNA lies vast human potential. We all experience momentary flashes of genius and find ourselves capable of amazing feats in our lifetime. These are not just chance encounters with adrenaline, luck or divine intervention. This is our inner self reminding us we are fully capable of anything we can possibly dream up.

Human beings are equipped with phenemonal intellect and imaginative capabilities. We were also blessed with a body that could perform an inexhaustible amount of functions. The tools are there to build your dreams, all we need to do is hammer a way a little bit each day. A vision becomes realized when it is held in the mind and transferred through our neurons to every cell in our body. We can literally feel our fingers and toes curl with inspiration.

Here are some of the visions that pass through my mind that I intend to bring into reality. What are some of yours?

1. Run a Half Marathon (Philadelphia 2009!)
2. Run a Marathon (Boston 2012!)
3. Own a beautiful home (In the Merrimack Valley!)
4. Earn a Master's Degree (Counseling or Education!)
5. Earn plenty of money doing something I love
6. Speak and Write professionally
7. Have a beautiful, healthy and happy family that is well taken care of
8. Eat the best and highest quality food for my body
9. Serve others in the most honorable way I possibly can
10. Make a lasting impression on every person I meet

What ten things do you want to accomplish? Can you name five? What is one thing you really want to accomplish? I look forward to supporting you.

Stay Positive,


Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Suprise - Apricot Muffins!

Hello Positive Eaters,

Today I decided to suprise some of the people at my Mom's work with Apricot Muffins. I was hankering for some muffins and wanted to do something different. I had some Polaner Apricot Fruit Spread and it hit me! Apricot muffins! Now I must admit this is not an original idea...I got the picture above from another person's blog who posted on Apricot Muffins (visit their blog here). There are a couple ways to make these muffins. One way is to chop up dried apricots and soak under warm water for 10-15 minutes...the other way is to just add apricot fruit spread to the batter. I used the fruit spread and kind of wished I'd used the dried apricots after. I guess next time. Here is the recipe!

Apricot Muffins

- 1 Cup chopped dried apricots or 4-6 Tablespoons Apricot Fruit Spread
- 2 Cups of Whole Wheat Flour (pastry flour or regular flour)
- 3/4 Cup Maple Syrup or Agave Nectar
- 2 Tbs Orange Zest
- 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp baking soda (I think they are the same thing too)
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 2 Large Organic Eggs
- 3/4 Cup Yogurt if you want a heavier muffin

1. Preheat oven to 350 Degrees. Pour hot water over dried apricots and let sit for five minutes (if using this ingredient)
2. Coat 12 cup muffin tin with cooking spray (I reccomend rubbing coconut oil inside).
3. Combine dry ingredients in one bowl.
4. Combine liquid ingredients in another bowl.
5. Combine dry and liquid ingredients and fold in apricot (spread or dried fruit)
6. Fill muffin tins to top with batter. Bake these twenty minutes and allow to cool ten minutes in the pan.


Stay Positive,


Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Nomadic Eating

Hello Positive Eaters,

The past couple weeks were absolutely crazy! I am just getting around to blogging now. During this time I moved apartments and my meals have resembled a nomadic moveable feast. I was like a viking minus the goofy hat.

We all go through times where we seem to be eating in a different location every time we sit down to feast. Taking the time pack food can be time consuming and we often just don't know what to pack. We also seem to forget eating is essential part of daily functioning. We seem assume it is just going to happen magically on its own. If you were a viking you would simply go into a town and demand quarter for you and your viking band. This convenience is no longer available to us.

Remember to schedule your meals as you plan out your day. This is an important time for you to take care of yourself. If you are unable to pack your meals as you travel amongst the landscape pick a healthy place to pick up both your lunch and your dinner. This will save you time in the long run and assure you get two healthy meals. Avoid golden arches, cute little red heads with pig tails and dogs that give you advice on what you should eat! Pull into a grocery store instead grab yourself some bread and whatever you can put in between two slices that will satisfy your hunger. This way you will have plenty of food and you did a little grocery shopping too!
Alright...the real reason I am posting on Nomadic Eating was to show you these awesome videos below. My good friend Jeff showed me this and I almost fell out of my chair laughing. Have a look see and let me know what you think!

Stay Positive,

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The Mad Cowboy

Dear Positive Eaters,

I want to introduce you to a man affectionately known as "The Mad Cowboy." His name is Howard Lyman and he was a fourth generation cattle farmer in Montana. He grew up on a small family farm and turned it into a full fledged "agribusiness" in the 1950's. In 1979 after almost thirty years working and running a factory farm he developed a tumor on his spine. This near death experience inspired him to begin practicing sustainable organic farming practices. Soon after this, he became a vegetarian and eventually a full fledged vegan.

He became an outspoken advocate for government regulation of factory farming. Howard earned his initial notoriety when he began to expose the connection between factory farming practices and their contribution the spread of Mad Cow Disease. He appeared on the Oprah Winfrey Show in 1996 and after giving Oprah a run down on some of the egregious practices carried out in factory farms across the United States, Oprah exclaimed that she was never eating a hamburger again. Well, lo and behold it is actually a federal offense to speak out against the meat or dairy industry. Howard and Oprah ended up in court battle that lasted six years. They were both cleared of any criminal offenses.

He truly is one of the most incredible personalities I've ever come across. His passion and humor is touching and positive. He speaks with tremendous credence and compassion. Please take a moment to watch a couple of the videos I've embedded below and get to know Howard!

His book is Mad Cowboy and his website is

Stay Positive,


Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Eating in the Atmosphere

Hello Positive Eaters,

Today I went out to lunch with a good friend of mine, Jennah Dieter* in Newburyport Massachusetts. Newburyport is one of my favorite places on Earth. It is a seaside town in the North Shore of Massachusetts with rich history and tons of positive places to eat and shop. I was actually born in this wonderful little city 27 years ago.

We went to Andaman Thai and got some fresh rolls and two refreshingly delicous salads. We sat up on the upper deck outside in the fresh air. From our perch we could see the Merrimack river pouring out into the Atlantic ocean. This made the meal even more enjoyable. When you enjoy your location and the company your with it actually improves the quality of your meals. When you were a kid you didn't want to go to McDonald's because the Happy Meals were so delicous, you were hoping your parents took you to the Mickey D's with the playground and were reaching for the toy before the burger and fries.

A relaxed and stress free atmosphere has been shown to improve digestion, which can lead to more effective absorption of nutrients. We may not all be able to eat our meals in such a scenic and lovely location as Newburyport, but we can work to make the place we enjoy our mid day meal more relaxing and enjoyable.

  • Try moving outside and eating in the fresh air. Bring a blanket and make a picnic for yourself
  • Make sure you keep company with co workers you enjoy being around
  • Avoid talking about work complaints and issues that raise your blood pressure
  • Pick a quiet room away from distractions
  • Switch off the computer and television and invite friends and/or serenity to your meal
  • Make an attempt to really taste your food by chewing and slowing down
  • Avoid "power lunches" , "lunch meetings" , or "working through lunch" (tip below)
Try a few of these techniques to bring enjoyment to your lunches and use this as an opportunity to destress and have fun. You just might be rewarded with better health and happiness.

Stay Positive,


Tip: When at a meeting that is in sincere jeopardy of creeping into lunchtime and potentially obliterating it altogether. Raise your hand to pose a question, put on a serious face so you appea to be bringing up something important and ask this question "Will be convening after lunch?" Trust me it works everytime.

*Visit my friend Jennah's Website! She runs in awesome Wellness Center in Newburyport

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Extreme Hydration!!!!!

Hello Everyone!

Yesterday I ran a ten mile road race! For those of you who know me and follow this blog, you know running is my favorite activity ever! The mercury was peaking at about 90 degrees so I needed to take some extreme measures.

I start everyday with a mug of warm water and lemon. This helps your body flush out all of the cleaning your digestive system did over night. It is like a daily detox and it is practically free! This of course was a great start but I knew it was going to take a lot more than just 12 ounces of water.

I headed over to the grocery store to pick up some bottled water. This was extremely confusing. Some water was from a spring, some was from an artesian well and one brand even was formed from man made clouds. The more I read the labels the more confused I got. I decided to go with the cloud water. I liked the shape of the bottle.

In all actuality, we should make an attempt to drink somewhere between 32 and 64 ounces a day. The amount people need is somewhat varied based on your sweat rate. Also the more caffeine you consume will require you to up your water intake. Caffeine stimulates your adrenal glands which stimulates the bladder and you end up making more trips to the loo than normal. Although I love reader participation, please don't tell me your sweat rate or let me know how many Red Bulls you drink a day. Both facts have the ability to deeply disturb me. Just try and hit 64 and you should be good. Since we can only process 8 ounces a water an hour go easy now :).

Since, I was going to be sweating like a politician in a sauna, taking a lie detector test, with his wife and constituents watching, I decided to go for 72 ounces. I took it easy and sipped from my cloud water all afternoon and prepared to hit the streets at 6:30pm. I want to thank all of the awesome road race spectators and volunteers who gave me water along the way. You guys rock! I had no issues with hydration and felt strong despite the ten miles and the heat. Below is a picture of me out on the course courtesy of the man, myth and legend Tom Derderian.

Stay Positive,


Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Health Care Reform

Hello Positive Eaters,

Tonight I tuned into President Barack Obama's address regarding health care resolution 626. This issue is as hotly debated and politically charged as they come. What is important are these facts:
  • 42 million Americans do not have health insurance
  • 96 million Americans are inadequately insured
  • The average American family spends $1500 a month on health insurance
  • The United States spends more money on health care than any other nation
  • The leading health problems in this country are obesity, cancer, heart disease and diabetes*
While people in Washington rush around and try to make or break political careers by posturing on this extremely important issue, Positive Eating wants to offer its own brand of health care reform. I call it the Positive Eating Health Care Resolution. Americans are terrified by health care because they are reminded every day that it is in crisis. This makes people want to get as far away from health care as possible. No one wants to be part of a crisis. Imagine I walk up to you and say "hey, want some health care" you would be like "no way...haven't you heard it is in a crisis."

To me health care sounds pretty awesome. I am down for caring about my health. We can all start caring about our health today. Why wait for people in Washington to figure out how to care for your health. I am going to eat a ton of fruit and veggies, some whole grains, healthy protein and my vegan ice cream and just to go the extra mile I just might floss and brush my teeth as well. Let's commit to our own brand of health care every day. If you need a good place to start I encourage you to enact the Postive Eating Health Care Resolution immediately.

Positive Eating Health Care Resolution

  1. Drink a glass of water every morning
  2. Brush and floss your teeth
  3. Dance around your living room for 15 minutes
  4. Eat some fruit
  5. Eat some vegetables
  6. Smile and use the name of one person you don't know
  7. Try a whole grain (rice, quinoa, cereals, whole grain bread)
  8. Breath for one minute (seriously try it, this is free and way underrated)
  9. Experiment with some different proteins (beans, lean meat, nuts and seeds, etc.)
  10. Try healthy recipes that seem fun (come back here for suggestions if you like)
I am empowering you to put this resolution into action right now. I am not the "sovereign of health", I am just an eloquent cheerleader with and internet connection so it's in your hand folks. If you want to see what the actual president has to say check the video below.

Stay Positive,


*all which are to some degree preventable by adopting a positive health lifestyle :)

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

My First Positive Eating Video!!!!

Hey Guys!

Check out my first Positive Eating video. I plan to do one of these every month just to switch it up a bit! I am so excited. I am still figuring this multimedia thing out. I had to put this on YouTube and then embed it here. So I guess I am on YouTube now as well. Crazy!

Stay Positive,


Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Summer Recipes from Sumner!

Hi Everyone,

I was lucky enough to get an email from my good friend Sumner Fletcher today. She is a great runner, an extraordinary yoga teacher and a positive force no matter where she goes. We both follow each others blogs and this week she was nice enough to send me over a couple recipes she enjoyed with her family over this Fourth of July Weekend. These recipes are perfect to bring or serve at a summer picnic and loaded with a colorful array of incredible vegetables and exciting spices.

The first one features Sweet Potatoes (a personal favorite)

Grilled Sweet Potato & Spicy Vinaigrette

  • 2 1/2 Pounds Sweet Potatoes (peeled)
  • 1/4 Cup Olive Oil
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 4 Ears of Corn (husked or use canned corn)
  • 1 Red Bell Pepper
  • 2 Scallions (chopped)
  • 1 Cup fresh Cilantro (chopped)
  • 1/2 Cup rice wine vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon chipotle chili with adobo sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon minced Shallot
  • 1 minced Garlic clove
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice


In a large pot cover potatoes with salted cold water by 1 inch and simmer, covered, until just tender, about 15 to 30 minutes, depending on size of potatoes. In a colander drain potatoes and cool to warm. Cut the potatoes crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick slices.

Prepare grill. In a small bowl, whisk together the oil and cumin. Brush both sides of the potato slices with the oil mixture. Brush the ears of corn with the remaining oil mixture. Grill the potato slices for 1 minute per side and transfer to a large bowl. If necessary, the grilled potato slices can be halved or quartered into bite-size pieces at this point. Grill the corn for 3 to 4 minutes rotating once a minute and transfer to a plate. When the corn is cool enough to handle, remove the kernels with a sharp knife. Add the corn to the potato slices. Add the red bell pepper, scallions and 1/4 cup cilantro leaves. Do not stir to combine.

In a food processor or blender combine the seasoned rice wine vinegar, chipotle chili, shallot, garlic, lemon juice and remaining cilantro leaves and puree until smooth.

Pour half of the dressing over the vegetables and gently toss to combine. Add the remaining dressing and carefully stir again. Cover and let stand for at least 30 minutes to allow flavors to combine.

Here is the next one! This will be a hit at any summer cookout!

Fresh Mushroom and Three Beans Salad

  • 10 ounces fresh white mushrooms, quartered (about 3 cups)
  • 1 jar (about 7 ounces) roasted red peppers, drained, cut in strips (about 3/4 cup)
  • 1 can (about 15 ounces) 50% less sodium cannellini (white kidney) beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can (about 15 ounces) 50% less sodium red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can (about 15 ounces) black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 ribs celery, sliced (1 cup)
  • 1/2 cup coarsely shredded Parmesan cheese, divided
  • 3/4 cup homemade or prepared Italian salad dressing, no salt added
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley


In a large bowl combine mushrooms, peppers, and three kinds of beans, celery and 1/4 cup of the cheese. Add dressing and parsley; toss to coat well. Stir in parsley. Serve topped with remaining cheese.

Make sure you check out my friend Sumner's Blog out by visiting the link provided.

Keep enjoy your summer and I will see you next Wednesday!

Stay Positive,


Wednesday, July 1, 2009

The Trans Fat Ban

Just say NO to Trans Fat?

Hi Everyone,

In 2006, the mayor of New York banned trans fat from city restaurants. This is pretty remarkable! There are over 16,000 restaurants in Manhattan, making the restaurant industry the largest business sector in New York. If only they thought to ban greed from the finance industry! Can you imagine what a shiny happy place New York would be?

New York's move to ban trans fat is producing a dramatic domino effect. Minneapolis and Philadelphia have now passed similar legislation and in 2007 California passed a law that will make it our first trans fat free state. Lawsuits filed against both Kraft and McDonald's are causing the fast food industry and even packaged junk food companies to move away or totally eliminate trans fat from their offerings.

Trans Fat is also known as hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oils. I could let you guys know about how fats and oils take on a chemical cis shape in nature and when they are processed in this way take on the trans shape and how this process gives oils and fats a longer shelf life. I avoided taking organic chemistry in school and will spare you the lesson now.

Fats and oils become hydrogenated by bubbling hydrogen gas through them at high temperatures. Hence the word "hydrogenated". This is all well and good, but I don't want hydrogen gas in my food and especially not in my fats and oils. I remember sucking helium gas when I was kid from a balloon and thinking it was cool how I would talk funny, but then I got lightheaded and passed out. Ingesting gas is not really my thing.

Trans fat will not make you talk funny..they are associated with headaches, joint pain, arthritis, asthma, skin problems and menstrual problems. They are also a source of chronic disease. This blog is not really about the big nasties of eating. I would rather you try them out for yourself and make your own decisions. Trans fats can be found in the following foods.
  • packaged cookies and baked goods
  • food that just came out of a fryolator
  • margarine
  • microwave popcorn
  • frozen pizza and waffles
  • butter that comes in a tub
If you start to talk funny or pass out from eating these let me know.

You could also give fats and oils that still exist in their cis form, the way nature intended, a try. Here are a few of my favorites.
  • Olive oil (great for everything!)
  • butter (in the stick form)
  • sesame oil
  • peanut oil
  • coconut oil (great for desserts)
  • sunflower oil
  • ghee (clarified butter)
  • grapeseed oil
Thanks for checking out this blog post! If you would like the organic chemistry lesson regarding trans fats or more information about the ban on trans fats check out the websites below.

Stay Positive,


Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Summer - The season of mayonnaise

Summer is a great season for eating! Farm stands are starting to offer some early season produce and some locations allow you to pick your own berries! People enjoy eating outside and lots of the food is served chilled to offset the rising temperatures.

Most barbecues feature something cooked on a grill and chilled dishes featuring vegetables covered in mayonnaise. This is a quandary to me. Fresh snappy vegetables are everywhere! Their sweet and succulent delights almost call out to us to savor their colorful splendor. So we take them home, chop them up and dump vinegar and egg whites all over them. You will see this phenomenon at at least one barbecue this summer. With your grilled piece of game you will be offered coleslaw (cabbage and mayonnaise), pasta salad (pasta, little pieces of carrots, onions, celery and mayonnaise) and potato salad (potatoes with mayonnaise) and if they really want to keep in the spirit of the season they will serve egg salad as well(which are eggs covered with an emulsion of themselves alson known as mayonnaise).

Now, there is no need to outlaw mayonnaise, what would a tuna fish sandwich be without it, I am just saying let's cool it just this one time. Let's team up and throw a barbecue this year where the hellman's stays in the fridge. I can picture the colorful array spread out across your picnic table now. Fresh salad greens with freshly picked strawberries and blueberries topped with poppyseed dressing. Fruit salad served in the hollowed out shell of a watermelon. Carrot sticks and celery for the kiddies to munch on (let them dip the celery in some peanut butter they will love it). Maybe some chicken served with a pineapple glaze and grilled pieces of pineapple to go with it. You won't even think about mayo until you find it in the back of your refrigerator, open it up to smell it and then ask yourself for the thousandth time "how long does mayonnaise last".

Stay Positive,


Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Vegan Strawberry Ice Cream!

Hi Positive Eaters,

If there is a food heaven, Ice Cream most likely inhabits its highest realm. What food makes every part of our being smile more than Ice Cream? Last summer, when talking with a vegan friend of mine, I mentioned that I could probably handle being a vegan...but I would never give up Ice Cream, no matter what. I was then introduced to vegan ice cream, a creamy dessert that does not contain a single ingredient deriving from an animal. To my amazement, this frozen ambrosia that uses coconut milk as a base was absolutely amazing! Creamy, sweet and satisfying (and easy to make)!

Whether you are vegan or eat meat on a stick for dinner every night this is worth a try.

Vegan Strawberry Ice Cream

  • 2 cans of Coconut Milk
  • 1 1/2 cups Chopped Strawberries
  • 1/2 cup of Agave Nectar
  • 1/4 cup Strawberry Jam (preferably unsweetened)

Pour coconut milk into an ice cream maker and begin mixing. Slowly add agave nectar and then strawberry jam. Make sure to run a spatula along side of frozen bowl to prevent sticking. Just before mixture becomes thick add strawberries. When the mixture takes on ice cream consistency remove and place in a freezer friendly storage container. This treat is best enjoyed right after making but can be stored in a freezer and enjoyed later!

This recipe is featured in this month's ChiRunning Newsletter!

Thanks for coming back to my blog. Tune in next week for more Positive Tips!

Stay Positive,


Wednesday, June 10, 2009

If someone eats positively and no one hears the chewing did it really happen?


While attending to various internet tasks today, I came across a dusty corner out there in my little patch of cyberspace. I blew away the cobwebs and came across my beloved blog Positive Eating! Why was it hidden from my view for so many months? So many positive meals and positive moments passed and we did not get to share them together.

Here we are together again. Positive Eating, a blog for those who wish to make living a positive and healthy lifestyle a fun, humorous and mindful journey. An opportunity for those of you who know me and those of you who don't to form a community based on the idea that we nourish also selves every day with food and experiences. I will be posting to this blog every Wednesday. Check back for recipes, stories and humor. 

If you are out there let me know so I can say hello. 

Stay Positive,