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Holidays, Allergies & Your New Diet

My favorite time of year is Thanksgiving! I think it is the absolute best, you have all those different types of vegetables, roots, turkey and gravy! Not to mention the best types of desserts! The pumpkin pie, pecan pie, apple pie, these are amazing! I love food. I love cooking food, preparing food, and I love to see people, whom I love, eat the food and enjoy it! My favorite spice (Love), the secret ingredient is always the emotion you put into it!

But here is the hard part, with the holidays right around the corner and some of our diets limited because of allergies or health status, How do I prepare and enjoy the food that bring so many happy memories, without feeling like I’ve been cheated? What ingredients can be substituted without really noticing that they were swapped out?

When I cook thanksgiving, I tend to leave the extra ingredients out. I don’t cook much with salt (any kind), I use alternatives for dairy and butter, when I say alternatives I do not mean margarine. I use whole foods and keep to real foods – not plastic. Part of the process of learning to cook and how to eat – especially in the United States – is the fact that we need to reconsider what a whole food is and what real food is.

Fast food is not real, its plastic, its garbage, there is not one healthy thing about fast food that should make you think that you are eating healthy, I don’t care how many iceberg lettuce pieces are on it. TRUTH. BE. TOLD. Iceberg lettuce is a waste of precious calories; instead of iceberg try romaine, arugula, spinach, kale, or that some-what new packaged greens called Power greens (a blend of spinach and kale). These other types of lettuce hold nutrients worth eating, fiber that moves your digestion and helps us to feel better and slim down. Along with keep our bowels moving which help eliminate toxins.

So what do I use instead of butter? Ghee is an option – (also called clarified butter), olive oil, avocado oil, grape seed oil, basically one may use any oil that is not specifically called “vegetable oil” or “canola oil” as these tend to be inflammatory. Make your own salad dressings from equal parts oil (even fish oil) and lime juice/water or a Bragg’s Vinegar.

The most important part of the holidays and eating, is to eat enough to be satisfied, not to the point of being full, and uncomfortable, and to eat a little bit of every thing. My Aunt calls this a “no-thank-you” serving – just enough to taste and have the variety. Generally it is the size of a smallish spoon (not a serving spoon).

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