RECIPE: CRANBERRY ORANGE BISCOTTI
Almost too good to be true- vegan, gluten-free, cranberry orange biscotti are a delicious treat to enjoy with a cup of tea or your preferred after-dinner elixir. Even the kids will love them!
- 1 1/4 cups blanched almond flour
- 1 tbsp arrowroot powder
- 1/4 tsp Celtic sea salt*
- 1/4 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 cup raw honey
- 2 tsp orange zest
- 1/4 cup dried cranberries
- 1/4 cup pistachios
n a food processor, combine almond flour, arrowroot powder, salt, and baking soda. Pulse until ingredients are well combined. Pulse in agave nectar and orange zest until the dough forms a ball. Remove dough from food processor and work in cranberries and pistachios with your hands. Form dough into 2 logs on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes, then remove from oven and cool for 1 hour. Cut the logs into 1/2-inch slices on the diagonal with a very sharp knife. Spread slices out on a baking sheet and bake at 300 degrees for 12-15 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool, set, and become crispy.
Serves: 12 baby biscotti
* Celtic Sea Salt has a stronger taste than other salts. If you find your biscotti too salty for your liking, try reducing to a little less than a 1/4 tsp.
Compliments of Elana's Pantry.
The digestive system has an intricate relationship with all other systems in the body, including the immune, endocrine, and nervous systems. If your digestive system cannot properly digest food, absorb nutrients, and eliminate waste products from the body, then it becomes very difficult to maintain optimal health. Even if you eat an ideal diet, if you experience a great deal of stress, have an underlying medical condition, or are taking medications that affect digestive processes, you can experience digestive difficulties and have problems absorbing nutrients.
Digestive enzymes are proteins that facilitate specific chemical reactions to break down food (e.g., carbohydrates, fats, and proteins) into smaller, absorbable components. Digestive Enzyme Supplements (DES) are a natural remedy for many conditions that have a root cause in the digestive system, including food sensitivity, allergies, behavioral disorders, and other health conditions that may be related to a nutrient deficiency.
Your health practitioner may suggest taking a plant-based DES with meals. These are usually derived from pineapple (bromelain) or papaya (papain). Another source of DES is derived from microbes and includes varieties of lipase, amylase, protease, and lactase, which all have unique effects in the digestive process.
The medical premise for a DES is to facilitate thorough digestion of food and to prevent foodstuffs from lingering in the gut where they can generate unfavorable bacteria and yeast (at the expense of healthy gut bacteria). Digestive enzyme supplements may also enhance the nutrition received from the foods you eat, which is good for the whole body. Research shows that taking a DES can promote bowel movement regularity, reduce or eliminate other gastric disturbances such as reflux or gas, and ease the symptoms of food intolerance (e.g., lactose).
Digestive enzymes can be used by adults and children alike, but consult your practitioner for proper dosage. Do not take digestive enzymes without the input of your doctor if you have active stomach or duodenal ulcers, inflammation of the bowels, bleeding disorders, or are scheduled for surgery.
- American Association of Naturopathic Physicians. "The Naturopathic Approach to Digestive Disorders." November 1, 2012.
- Fieker, A., J. Philpott, and M. Armand. "Enzyme Replacement Therapy for Pancreatic Insufficiency: Present and Future." Clinical and Experimental Gastroenterology 4 (2011): 55ñ73.
- Quinten, T., et al. "Can the Supplementation of a Digestive Enzyme Complex Offer a Solution for Common Digestive Problems?" Archives of Public Health 72, Suppl 1 (2014): 7.
- Roxas, M. "The Role of Enzyme Supplementation in Digestive Disorders." Alternative Medicine Review 13, no. 4 (December 2008): 307-14.
HOLY BASIL (Ocimum sanctum or Tulsi)
Holy basil (or Tulsi), with its astringent taste and powerful aroma, is not the sweet basil you use to season marinara sauce. And it is very different from the basil used in Thai cuisine. Cultivated in the Southeast Asian tropics, holy basil has long been considered sacred in India where it is still used in worship services. For centuries, holy basil has been used in Ayurvedic therapies to treat a wide range of ailments including respiratory conditions, skin conditions, inflammation, microbial conditions, infertility, and psychological distress.
Modern scientific research is now demonstrating its beneficial effects. Evidence suggests that Tulsi offers protective benefits against physical, environmental/chemical, metabolic, and psychological stress.
Researchers are interested in the active ingredients that can be derived from the flowers, stems, leaves, seeds, and roots and used for medicinal purposes. The active ingredients in Tulsi have been found to have "adaptogenic effects," which means Tulsi helps the body better manage the physiological response to stress. Studies also show it helps reduce inflammation and keep blood glucose levels in balance. There also is evidence to support using holy basil as an antimicrobial agent in hand sanitizer and mouthwash.
There are several methods of application for holy basil: Dried powder, a capsule containing the concentrated herb extract, tea, or tincture. A natural health physician may advise using a specific amount and a specific type of application based on individual health concerns or for preventive care. Because it is known to interact with other medications, consult with your physician before taking a Tulsi supplement. Unless under a physician's care, do not give holy basil to an infant.
- Cohen, MM. "Tulsi - Ocimum Sanctum: A Herb for All Reasons." Journal of Ayurveda and Integrative Medicine 5, no. 4 (2014): 251-9. doi: 10.4103/0975-9476.146554
- Duke, J.A. Handbook of Medicinal Herbs (2nd ed.). Boca Raton, Florida: CRC Press: 2002.
Prakash, P., and N. Gupta. "Therapeutic Uses of Ocimum Sanctum Linn (Tulsi) with a Note on Eugenol and Its Pharmacological Actions: A Short Review." Indian Journal of Physiology and Pharmacology 49, no. 2 (2004): 125-131.
- Sumit, B., and A. Geetika. :"Therapeutic Benefits of Holy Basil (Tulsi) in General and Oral Medicine: A Review." International Journal of Research in Ayurveda and Pharmacy 3, no. 6 (December 2012): 761-764.
ESSENTIAL OILS TO REJUVENATE ENERGY LEVELS
It can hit anyone at any age - children and adults alike - and result in anything from mild discomfort to severe pain. We're talking about congestion, that miserable clogged headachy feeling due to upper respiratory illness, ear infection, or allergies. It's often due to inflammation and fluid in the Eustachian tube, a canal that connects the middle ear to the upper throat and the back of the nasal cavity.
Essential oils also can be inhaled ("air therapy") much the way one inhales the aroma of a good meal. Hold the bottle a few inches below your nose and breathe deeply. Another option is to use an aromatherapy diffuser. Try this method when you aren't able to use massage. It's also a great technique to use around the house, at your desk, or after a long drive.
These uses of essential oils are believed to stimulate the brain centers that are active in regulating hormones, including those that affect emotion and energy levels. The oils listed below are just a few that are recommended for boosting alertness, elevating mood, and restoring balance when you feel fatigued. Check with your wellness practitioner to see if these oils are right for you.
Energy-boosting oils can be blended or used individually. Remember, these oils are stimulating, so you would not want to use them within a few hours of going to sleep.
- Bergamot (Citrus bergamia) helps relieve anxiety and pent-up energy.
- Ginger (Zingiber officinale) has a stimulating fragrance that can boost motivation when you feel sluggish.
- Lemon/Lime (Citrus limon/Citrus aurantifolia) are energizing, cleansing scents that can help dispel worry and clear emotional confusion.
- Peppermint/Spearmint (Mentha piperita/Mentha spicata) both can awaken mental activity and help relieve fatigue. Spearmint has a sweeter, less medicinal scent than peppermint.
- Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) helps calm anxiety and boost mental alertness.
- Essential Oils Natural Living. "Essential Oils to Boost Energy, Reduce Fatigue."
- Mars, B., and C. Fieldler. The Home Reference to Holistic Health & Healing. MA: Fair Winds Press: 2015.
First Do not Harm
Identify and Treat the cause
Healing Power of Nature
Doctor as Teachers
Treat the Whole
Prevention is best Medicine
The information offered by this newsletter is presented for educational purposes. Nothing contained within should be construed as nor is intended to be used for medical diagnosis or treatment. This information should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider. Always consult with your physician or other qualified health care provider before embarking on a new treatment, diet or fitness program. You should never disregard medical advice or delay in seeking it because of any information contained within this newsletter.