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Saturday, December 31, 2011

My Food Journey 2011

The past year has been a discovery journey, in many senses, but more than anything some of the discoveries have had practical implications far beyond my own imagination.

First of all, what I have learned is to use my own brain when it comes to the food that we eat. That means bye bye authorities' dietary recommendations and it also mean A LOT of reading to make my brain apt for thinking on its own.

Two, no actually three, Swedish experts have through their books had a major role to play in this journey. Anna Hallen and her personal story (Anna Hallen Blog) opened my eyes and mind and got me wanting to know more. Andreas Eenfeldt's book the Food Revolution (Diet Doctor Blog) made me seriously distrust everything government ever said to be healthy. This is also when I decided myself to change not only my diet but my lifestyle, skipping processed foods, most carbs and embracing proteins and (real) fats as my main nutrion sources. First the change was inspired by the hope of getting rid of all sorts of craving, stabilizing my terrible mood swings and I won't deny it, also to loose some weight (see Patiperra's post in Spanish "Pan da poto"). In hinsight the change in diet was quite easy, while I followed the strategy later explained to a friend interested in the diet ( "Pan da poto - pero como eliminarlo?").

After 3-4 months of strict low carbing I started to feel hunger when I was actually hungry, satisfied when my body had had enough and my mood swings were almost gone. My body seemed to be in a balance it had never experienced before. But I was also a bit bored with the high (animal) fats and the restrictive LCHF rules which excluding many valuable foods from my diet. Also, after 4 months of label reading I was painfully aware of all the additives and sugars included in the rest of the family's food. On a day of open crossfire confrontation with Kidone, I just so happened to come across Ulrika Hoffer's book about the Wise Choice family (The book, the Blog, and Patiperra's discovery: "Reclaiming the hoods"). Her message went straight to my spinal cord. Things were about to change for the rest of the family as well. But it was only almost two months later when Kidone's mood swings got worse that I decided to give Hoffer's suggestions a real try ("Let the challenge begin"). Almost over one night was sugar, wheat and most milk products thrown out of this household with remarkable results (About changing lifestyle 1, About changing lifestyle 2). Kids suddenly started eating much more veggies, real food, and just seemed so much more balanced. Gone were the days of "pataletas" (serious tantrums) and instead we had a fightfree summer! Incredible! Kidone gained weight like never before and Kidtwo, well he continued growing and eating as before.

After this experience I started investigating even more what wrong sort of food really does to our body. I watched Robert Lustig's Bitter truth about sugar (Toxic sugarSugar - deceitful and dangerous), all episodes of Sugar Trap from the 80's (Kids and sugar) and I started following Doctor Davis's Wheatbelly blog ("A Must Read!", Wheat Belly Blog). There was no turning back; I was hooked on information about food and its impacts on our bodies.

Since September the food issues have been of primary importance in practice but also much more challenging, as Kidtwo started daycare and I myself went off on my own endeavors. Sweetdreams has been my freetimee hobby, helping to sort out my thoughts on food but also sharing my insights and doubts with those truly interested in the subject.

We have not looked back since that last week in May when we introduced the wise choice diet in this family. It's really impossible to think we would ever return to the old habits again (which I would says were never unhealthy to begin with, we ate mostly homecooked foods, but also a lot of pastas and bread, which I know now have a bad impact on our wellbeing). But we are still accomodating ourselves to this lifestyle. I am still looking for the ultimate recipe of healthy, sustainable, and most important of all, EASY living. To accomplish all this, there is a need of activating the brain, planning weekly shopping lists, where and when to buy what, and find the time for cooking from scratch. All for the healthy, easy living. My latest blog discovery, Wellness Mama, seems to be covering much of these topics.

In 2012, I aim at more excercise (untile now this has mostly been biking from point A to B) and start sleeping decent nights again. As for food, I hope the ingredients will be more organic and locally grown - abandoning our dependence on the big hypermarket ("Going Green") and exploring alternative food supply chains, such as the community food circle and the open markets. But that,my dear friends, will be the story of 2012!


Happy New Year 2012!

Friday, December 30, 2011

Yogurt delux

I tricked the kids into thinking they had strawberry yogurt tonight. When in fact this is what was being served:

1 avocado
1 handful of almonds
1 banana
1 dl of cold coconut milk
Some frozen mangos dices (not as much as in icecream)
Some frozen strawberries (not as much as in icecream)

Mixed throughly. Served with sliced fruits/muesli. I guess you could throw in some probiotics powder to get the benefits of real yogurts (without the artificial crap and sugar).


The idea spurged from one left over diced avocado after tonight's dinner (someone claimed she would eat it at then changed her mind...just to be tricked into eating it anyhow a bit later...cruel mother).

Btw, I would really like to attend a course of how to replace conventional recommendated nutrition with this high density stuff. For example, exactly how much broccoli or almonds do you have to eat to replace the calcium intake from one glass of milk? Such knowledge would make me sleep well at night.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Jackpot!

Waow, I think I hit the jackpot of blogging mothers!

Check this out:

Wellness mama

Who needs outdated books when there are frequently updated blogs like this.

Will try to browse through it...when I have time again...maybe March...

Island observations

It's strange. When I go to my parents' place with the kids all of a sudden all kind of rule bendings are allowed. I surprise myself with buying premade meatballs and thin Swedish white bread (tunnbröd). The thin bread is some kind of natural reaction of being close to Sweden, when I was a kid I always got thin bread when we went to Sweden. Is made out of white wheat flour, and I consider it quite empty on nutrients, but hey, we are on vacation; I can allow this within the 80-20 approach... And not to talk of the ice cream session the kids had with their grandparent yesterday!!! They were literally jumping up to the roof with that treat (the kids, not the grandparents). What is so lovely with those special moments nowadays is that they are truly special moments, the kids understand that and that is what makes them so happy. When we used to have bought icecream (make our own nowadays, based on avocado and bananas) every week, the reaction was the reversed; if we didn't have it they would be let down, nagging at the icecream freezer at ther supermarket. Nowadays they walk by both the icecream and the candies without even noticing. The trick is to let them have the treats at special moments so that next time we are at the supermarket we are not faced with the whole "throw-myself-on-the-floor-and-screem-ICECREAM"- You see we  nowadays have not only one but two kids with a strong will - and that is what makes life just a little bit more exciting!

What I also found intriguing was the discussion I had with Kidone regarding our boat trip out to the island. She started talking about the candy on the boat. I immediatelly associated it with the tax free shop's 1 kg candy bags (the ones I myself used to get when I traveled over to Sweden as a kid...) and I was thinking "my oh my, I am not up for this battle". Then I promised her we would check out the treats on the way home and see if we could get something for new year. Well guess what? My daughter is still completely unaware of the big bags of candies hidden in the tax free shop. She had been talking about the small candies in the cabin, and was all so excited of getting to bring ONE of those home with her. For her the boat trip is still all about one Marianne candy and the playground ball sea - not at all associating the cruise to the "food ´& beverage experience" on the cruises. How sound. I hope it will remain that way for YEARS to come.  Best of all is that as long as we, the parents, are in control, we really can keep it that way. Feels comforting somehow.

Monday, December 26, 2011

No Poo

I've been living a shampoo free life for months now. Just using conditioner on my hair, and it has done real wonders to my otherwise so died out hair.
Well, some days ago I came across the real "No Poo" solution (google it if you want to know more) - where you also skip the conditioner and instead use baking soda (!!) and apple cider vinegar (!!!) in your hair. I tried it today.
Just asked hubby what he thinks of my hair today. He said he had been looking at it, that it looked fantastic... he almost fainted when I told him what I had put in it.... then he said he didn't want to smell and then corrected himself after smelling saying it smelled "rico". So, ladies, anyone out there with dry hair and up for treatment : No Poo it is!

Here a pic of my hair today:

Some interesting links - note to myself

These are links I need to dig into, when I have the time. For the time being I just store them here and if you want to read go ahead.

The Gluten File

How to keep feces out of your bloodstream

The case of going Gluten Free

Eating Animals

Just as I was pinnin g out the new sustainable meet policy for our family after watching the movie Food Inc, I found this link under Mark's daily Apple:

Eating Animals

Three ex vegetarians/vegans that had changed their mind about eating animals. Their current views are in line with my thoughts... and I stress, so far it is only in my thoughts, I have not brought myself to buy the meat that is three to six times more expensive than the conventional meat yet. But I will, and at the same time, meat consumption in this family is bound to go down. Healthy and sane at the same time.

Thought I should bring this article in here since I now some of my readers are vegeterians, even vegans, and my own hubby has a past in the movement. May I add that I do highly respect such choices, just doubtful whether it is the most beneficial for our bodies in the long run. However, probably a lot healthier than the exccessive meat eater diet, no doubt about that.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

After watching the whole thing

In a few days I will do a summary of this year of food discoveries, all from fat, carbs in general, sugar, milk and wheat. But for now I can only say that if this year has been all about chosing the right nutrients for our food, I hope next year will be a step further, making ethic and sustainable choices that are also good for our health. After having seen Food Inc, I am definatelly done buying the cheap chicken breasts from the big supermarkets... We'll be eating Organic from the open market from now on...which also means that it won't be part of our weekly diet... I will turn to elk, reindeer, organic beef (all of these already implemented) and we really HAVE to skip the cheap salmon no matter how easy it is! If I only could figure out a way of having the children eating more beans, lenses and chickpeas...thinking of taking an Asian cooking course actually. Problem with the beans (and the coconut products) is that these are not exactly locally grown... And if we are to turn local in our food consumption then the portion of carbs in my own diet will have to increase...Kids are not either all that eager on beetroots and sprout... And we need to start storing a whole lot more of the summer harvest, building up a yearly investment plan somehow, spending a whole lot in Aug-Sept to then go on saving mode from Nov-May.
Well, still trying to figure it all out somehow. My body that is carb sensitive, sugar triggering risks and all that stuff, kids with their own special tastes and needs, hubby mostly happy with what is served but in need of easy instructions to jump in in the kitchen (and why deny it, on normal weekdays so am I!)... I think we have come some way on our food journey, but the movie I just saw made me even more painfully aware of that it is not enough... Maybe a task for 2012...

Food Inc

Ok, so I am watching Food Inc and 25 minutes into the movie and I am already done buying poultry, corn (including all processed food including corn) and beef... Its a messed up world we live in. Michael Pollan, once again, my heroe... And many others....

Thursday, December 22, 2011

The alternative gingerbread house


A suggested that we would build a house out of a cardboard box. While putting the wall cover we decided to make it our gingerbread house this year, dilemma of the candy house solved! Check out the lovely bus G got as a b'day card from day care. His the driver and his friends are looking out the windows!

MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!

The b'day party in pics and links to recipes

Here comes som illustrations from our party last Tuesday's b'day party.




The cake was a pumpkin pie, the recipe adapted from Mark Sisson's blog. Next time I will be more generous with the spices and add dates not only to the crust but also to the filling.

I also made his chocolate chip cookies chocolate chip cookies.

I had som pumpkin plum muffins, offered some of our home made wheatfree gingerbread cookies and the home made chocolates. Note, if you are going to make chocolates, do them the same day as the party, otherwise they kind of loose their glory...

The root chips were bought from a specialty store in Hakaniemi. Very good!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

The Verdict

Having family over is like it must be having the Michelin star crew visiting your restaurant... No mercy. Let's see how we'll get through tonight's party. And yes, I am still true to my convictions; It'll be wheat, sugar and almost dairy-free party. And G will love it. My b'day heroe. 2 years today. Grande!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Language shift, maybe

I'm thinking of writing in Swedish and Spanish as well, again. I miss using those languages. Should I open two new blogs? Name suggestions?

What about:

Dulces sueños norteños
Söta drömmar så in i Norden!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

December solutions

Earlier I wrote about my food dilemma in December. How I did not want to miss out on the Christmas spirit but was not ready to introduce ingredients that we do not consume anymore. The solution? I made my own recipe for ginger bread cookies, glögg and chocolates.  The ginger bread recipe was shared earlier. Here comes the chocolate and alcohol free glögg (kids loved it).


Chocolates:
Cacao butter
cacao powder
macademia nuts
dried ecological fruits: mango, pineapple, bananas.

I do not know exactly the amounts of each as it was a trial and error thing. Heated cacao butter until it melted, added poweder and the other ingredients (crushed and cut into small pieces). Poored into ice cube molds and muffin mold. Cooled 1h in fridge, then this is waht they looked like

So far everyone has been liking them. Oh, in this first batch I added some agave, while I still have it. In the second I left it out. Didn't seem to be a difference there.

Then the GLÖGG

Ingredients:
Water
Cinnamon stick
100% organic apple juice
glögg spices (I think it includes whole pieces of cloves, ginger, cinnamon, apples)


I used the water that was left over from cooking pumpking with a cinnamon stick yesterday, let the cinnamon stick soak in the water over night. Added apple juice and the spices, all ingredients soaked for another 2-3 hours. Heated the glögg and then got rid of the spices. Did not take a pic, sorry! But it was delicious, A couldn't stop drinking! :-)

Care for some milk? Tackling the cow...

Time to inform myself on the milk issue... I am not completely ready yet, although we have decreased our milk intake drastically since May. Still, I find it harder to give up milk than wheat and sugar. Or maybe not milk, but cheese and yogurt...In the summer I was a lot more consistent, but now as veggies and other options are not there, and the darkness somehow seems to require this extra calcium intake, I've been stocking up on ecological yoggie and butter a bit more than usual.

Really, is it only me, or is going milk free without allergies more freaky than going wheatfree?


Saturday, December 17, 2011

Wheatfree honey-based gingerbread cookies

I've had to give up some of my rules to bake ginger bread cookies this year....but still, these are wheat free and refined sugar free. When I started mixing with the traditional recipe I thought to myself, the objective of this excercise is to let the kids bake the cookies, if they turn bad its no problem, we can live without cookies. However, I am quite impressed myself with the result, these taste good, if I may say so, even better than many normal ginger bread cookies. Or is it only than my tastebuds are destroyed forever? Anyway, I won't be eating too many cookies this Christmas, these are mainly for the kids (G would have eaten the whole batch already in the morning, if I hadn't stopped him) and guests (b'day party coming up in a couple of days!). Here the recipe:

Ingredients

150 gr butter
05-1 dl honey (depending on how sweet you need them to be)
1 teaspoon baking soda
3 dl buckwheatflour
1 egg
2 tsp ginger bread cookie spices (ginger, ground clove, ground orange rind, cinnamon)


Melt the butter and add the honey and spices, take off stove, let cool. Add egg. Blend soda with buckwheat flour. Add the buckwheat flour to the rest. Place in fridge over night. When making the cookies, add buckwheat flour if needed (if it is too sticky). Bake the cookies in 180 degree for aprox 10 minutes. Let cool before you remove from the baking tray.




Good thing I am baking with children! Good excuse for the mess and the somewhat bumped into cookies! So much more charming this way. Right?

Care for some coke?

Things are happening.... here a commercial fromNYC Health, creating awareness of the connection between fat and sugar! (YAK!!!!)




And here another one; showing more the addictive part of the sugar...the hidden sugar in beverage, which people do not even pay attention to:




And the last one, this one should be on national telly down in Chile.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Cashew Plum Pumpkin Muffins

Here comes a tasty recipe for Christmas. I just invented it based on what was available (ran out of almonds) and I have to say that these are the best muffins so far! Maybe it was good to replace the almonds with cashew, a lot softer in both taste and contexture.

Ingredients:

3 dl cashew nuts
200 g dried plums (no sugar added)
3 dl cooked mashed pumpkins 
3 eggs
1,5 teaspoon baking soda
3 table spoons cinnamon

Blend the cashew nuts to flour. Add plums and blend. Add mashed pumpkins, baking soda and cinnamon. Blend. Finally add the eggs and blend. In the muffin molds, into the oven, bake in 180-200 degrees for 20-30 minutes.

Enjoy!


Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Raisins and thirst

Hubby snapped a picture today. I almost did not recognize the woman with my son in her arms. Then I realized that it was me.
I am quite convinced it was the sugar that drained my body on liquids and kept me with a swelling face. Evidence? No. Just anecdotes. And then of course, the simple fact that every time I eat a hand full of raisins, or something that contains more sugar than what my body likes, I wake up at night thinking I am in the middle of the desert, what a thirst!

Note, I get more thirsty from a hand full of raisins than from a glas or two own wine....

Monday, December 12, 2011

My new coffee

Is called "Pukka Revitalise": organic cinnamon, cardamom and ginger tea. Best of all; its taste resembles the tast of Glögg but without the sweetness (and alcohol), which means I can now drink this drink to get into the Christmas mood... or just to get into the working mood. Monday, difficult to get started, although I have more than enough on my table, and in my head! I think I'll just have another cup of tea!

Friday, December 9, 2011

My December dilemmas!

December is difficult. Have to admit. Not that I want to eat gingerbread cookies, or bake them for that matter. Neither am I very keen on all those kilometer long aisles of chocolate. I walk by, stop to see if any of the boxes have more than 70% chocolate and then continue walking. They never do. Have enough chocolate, I mean. I laugh for myself when I think of my chocolate frenzy two years ago as I was getting more and more anxious of having my second child! A box of chocolate was just never enough then... Heh, now one piece of 70% can be more than enough. How my body (or maybe mind) has changed!!!

So what is the difficult part? Well all these expectations. My own and those that (I expect) others to have (particularly the children). For example I want to celebrate a nice traditional Christmas, because I love the spirit! But traditions for me means gingerbread cookies, rice porridge with plum soup, glögg (sweet nordic warm drink) and then; the chocolate. All kind of foods that I do not enjoy eating anymore, either because I do not like the taste of it, or because it makes me feel bad afterwards. But of course, although I do not enjoy these, doesn't mean that the rest of the family should be denied the treats...there we go, the problem of what others expect...So far I have tried inventing new recipes, borrowing some from the low carbers to be able to "eat the cake and still have it". Its time consuming, time that I do not really have before Christmas is almost over. December is, difficult.

Christmas for me, also means a lot of lights, electric and candle, and above all planning and shopping gifts. This for me is maybe the greatest challenge of all, because when I left the sugar I also stopped and thought about the meaning of shopping more useless stuff in our overcroaded home. Remember, the story of stuff (http://www.storyofstuff.org/)? So if I don't want anymore stuff, why would I like to punish others with more stuff? Or wait, maybe others do still enjoy the spirit of giving and receiving. Or wait, maybe I also enjoy it, just as long as it is stuff that both the giver and the receiver truly enjoy! But to figure that out, I need to put down a lot of efforts to the Christmas shopping. Especially to the children, since I am completely aware of that its me (and hubby) who will be trying to organize the toy mess every evening before bedtime, also after Santa's visit. Once again, December is difficult. And I am just bearly hanging in there.

Anyway, if anyone out there that think they want to buy me a gift for Christmas because they ENJOY buying a gift for me (please not, I do not expect a gift from anyone, I am just as happy without!), then I'll give some hints on what I would truly ENJOY:

1. Theater tickets to Kristina från Dufvemåla accompanied with a babysitter
2. Lekue steam case, so that I can stop buying those plastic bags for oven baked fish!
3. The followup book to the Danish healthy family living: Kärnfrisk mat

 There, that said. Now I can only concentrate on all those other things.

Regarding the food, this is how far I have come....

Today I made chocolate based on coconut oil, cacao powder, coco nut flour and some agave  (might as well use it while its there) and spiced with peppermint. Quite decent taste. Kids liked them.

I also made gingerbread muffins based on almonds (2.5 dl), coconut flour (1 dl), 2.5 bananas, 1 apple, baking powder, agave and gingerbread spices (I do not know the name of them all in English, too lazy to look them up right now). They were quite tasty, have to say. Maybe good substitute to the cookies, at least in house. When we go out the rest of the family can still enjoy the cookies of others.

Thinking I might fulfill my daughters cookie baking expectations by buying gluten free ready made dough....It was sold out in the green big grocery store yesterday. I wonder why...  Gluten free is not best choice, best choice would be to do the cookies that Anna Hallen recommended on her facebook page, both low carb and wise choice... but I do not know if I have enough energy to make it from scratch... always a balance between wise choice and easy choice...if wise choice turns out too complicated then I might as well be human and go with easy choice. The whole point of this excercise is to live a simple life. Better remember that this month more than ever!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Is this a commercial for 'Palta Hass'???

Seems too good to be true...



But anyways, I'll just add a few points:

First, what did kids have before bedtime today? Yes, good mommy, avocado based icecream (frozen mangos, frozen strawberries, 2 avocados, banana) and they ate the whole batch, thinking that it was icecream - oh, how I love this diet of ours! :-)))

Second, what did I have as a snack (and breakfast) while on my little get-away in Denmark the past two days? Yes, avocados. Excellent snack, excellent breacky (together with some serrano ham, just because its so salty that it doesn't go bad over night outside a fridge).

Third, I better give some credits to our fine taster... what was her favourite dish when she was at her most challenging eating phase? What could I always count on? What did we always carry with us when going abroad, as emergency food? Yes, avocados (and cooked eggs). Smart girl. She knew what she needed.

IF, and only IF, the above clip is not a propaganda from Chilena avocado growers for us to go out and buy more of their 'palta hass'.

Over and out, good night!

Vitamine D - the happy pill

We have increased our intake. I even try to make my dark skinned hubby understand that he needs to fuel up on 'sun in a pill' in this dark dark country up north. He just laughs at me - but I still put the pills in his had.

And no, I am not only basing my perception on this freaky film clip. Almost everyone out there, be it mainstream or freakstream, talks about the importance of vitamine D.




Here is another one (note the mentioning of skin cancer and sun blocker... )


Saturday, December 3, 2011

Gluteus Minimus

For a while I've had the image of Eddie Murphy blowing up into a big fat ass in the movie 'Professor Nutty'. (don't ask me how come I've seen this movie... I definatelly got enough of Eddie back in the 80's and his performance in Beverly Hills Cops... but anyways, for some strange reason I have seen this movie).

Here is a quite interesting clip from the movie:



What if it is not a pill? What if Professor Nutty was right? There is a solution to the obesity. It's just not in a pill...No excercise, no strict calorie count... just pure and simple, real food! Hallelujah!

The sweetest poison of all

Ok, so after having digested the message of the Wheat Belly book for about a month, I am ready to take on a new mind blowing experience.

I am quite aware of the ups and mostly downs of sugar (I thank Dr Lustig's bitter truth for that), but I am still missing the whole picture. Ok, so I know that sugar has a dark history of slavery and cutting down rainforests (read a little bit on the colonial history of Brazil and you'll be amazed).  Today sugar is one of the mostly subsidized products in Europe. Regarding the subsidies, I ask myself why? If Europe is to subsidize something, why not subsidize something that contribute to human health, not destroy it. What use do we have of sugar in case we could not get other foods?  And one more point, I am not so sure the recent tax on sugar is only about saving our health. The state is desperate to get its tax incomes, just as desperate as the population is to get its sugar. Easy and quick fix: reduce income tax (people presumably happy with more money in their pocket) and increase sugar tax (you know they'll continue buying, just as they do with the alcohol... but the income reduction won't be as obvious...the state is not stupid).

Anyways, back to the topic. I found a new book today. Correction, I found a very old book today. Published already back in 1975! And this is a book I'd like to read, at some point. Sugar Blues by William Dufty. A classic. If you have the time and are interested in the topic have a look at his extract in the link below.


Sugar, the sweetest poison of all


And while you're at it, you might like to see how brown sugar became refined sugar, have a look below.
And let's give Norbert Rillieux a big cozy hug! Not only for saving the lives of millions of slaves, but because he facilitated sugar consumption and made the white stuff the most demanded drug on our planet! Hooray for the greatest invetions in our history!




Thursday, December 1, 2011

Open your mind!

This film is from diet doctor's webpage. He interviewed dr Mary Vernon, a self-learned low carb pioneer medical doctor from Kansas. Wish all doctors would watch this, with an open mind!



Here some of the most important points from the clip, sorry if it isn't stylishly correct, I wrote as I listened....

"The job of insulin is to stop fat burning and enhance fat storage"

Exctract from Biochemistry book for medical school.


How do you control the body from making insulin? All you have to do is take take out the sugar and starches, the bodies won't make extra insulin, they won't store fat, they'll burn fat.

How come they teach that at biochemistry and by the time you graduate you are told differently?

What did she do? Instead of a suscription of a pill she wrote a suscription on how to eat. And what happened?

People started getting well, not only well. They started getting remarkably well, shockingly well.

Who should eat low carb?

Everyone should eat low carb.

Carb tolerance is like a body's tolerance to sun. Some can take a bit more, others have to be more careful in order not to store carbs/burn skin.

Nobody needs to count calories! Just eat right.

Sometime the body has underlined damages that cannot be fixed only by food (that is why you need a medical doctor to help you, IF you are on medication - problem is that most physicians are not train how and when to take off people off drugs). But the starting point for all is the food intake.

You start off with the right amount of Protein. What you need depends on how much muscles and bone you have to maintain, your doctor should be able to calculate this (30 g of protein every meal/ or 1 gr per kg). Then you Fuel source: fat and carbs, depending on your body. When you burn carbohydrate, energy comes and goes, but with fat the burning is more stable.

Encourage people to eat: real food, not processed food. Especially vegetables, also some roots like carrots and potatoe but with fat to stabilize blood sugar.

The process to stabilize insuline may take five years!

It is very difficult to become anorectic, your weight stabilizes.

Impressive final remark - for those of you that oppose this diet because of its harm on the environment (my comment):

If everyone was eating like this, we wouldn't have to put so much energy into disrupting the environment for making grains, instead more grasfed beef, poultry. According to some studies, people decreased their intake of food by 1000 calories a day. If everyone around the world would decrease their energy intake by 1000 calories per day, wouldn't that be great for the environment!

Gotcha! (my comment)

Coconut cream dessert

Today I made a super-druper easy dessert - and healthy, I would say, if you do not count the sugar in fruits...

Place a can of coconut cream in the fridge for a couple of hours so that the white thick cream rises up to the top. Take out the thick cream (and save the watery leftovers for a smoothie or something similar) and stir like you'd be preparing whipped cream. Add some vanilla powder (sugar free) and a selection of fresh fruits or frozen berries. I used one banana, one organge, and 1 dl of frozen raspberries. Serve immediately or place in fridge so that the coconut milk doesn't melt.

Yammy!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Breastfeeding

Here's a book for those of you that have a little tot.

The Politics of Brestfeeding

Looks really interesting but my breasts are no longer working in the milk production business so no need to stock up with that book in my limited space on the book shelves.

I guess the main point of the book is that modern culture has gone way overboard on "breast sensitivity", alienating us from the real conception of what female breasts are all about: feeding babies, the most natural thing in this world.

Here the author in her own words:


So the first thing they flew into Haiti after the earthquake was babyformula. Hmmm. Interesting. Clean water and food to the mothers would have seemed more logical, don't you think?

Monday, November 28, 2011

Dino-meal

My book-shopping geene was just triggered!
Wow! This seems like a book that both son AND mom would like!


Too bad its only out in March 2012, would have made an excellent Christmas gift.

In the mean time, I will browse the authors' blog when I have the time. I found their "before-and-after" story by mistake and to me the story is nothing of a surprise by now but there are probably a lot of insights in other blog posts as well. Here is the link: Paleo Parents: Our Before and After Story
I'll also add it to my blogroll - when I have the time....

Off to work!


Monday, November 21, 2011

Autumn recipes

The past few days, I have been the chef de la chef in the kitchen and got around to a whole bunch of new recipes suitable for all those delicious ingredients available at the autumn market.

Beetroot burgers

Crushed raw beetroots
Cooked and mashed pumpkin
Carrots
Onion
Egg(s)
Buckwheat flour
Spices (salt, herbs, pepper)

Mix and fry in lots of coconut oil. My dough was quite loose, it worked out fine in the frying pan, just had to let them fry long enough on the first side.

Beetroot smoothie
Rice/oatmeal/soy milk
sesame seeds
banana
flaxseed oil
Raw beetroots
Frozen mango cubes
Cinnamon

Mix thouroughly in the mixer and enjoy!


Pumpkin spinach salty muffins

2 cups diced pumpkin (cooked)
2 tbsp oil
1 handful baby spinach (or 3 frozen cubes)
2 tbsp parsley
3 tbsp sunflower seeds
half a handful of semi-crushed walnuts
feta or goat cheese (leave out if you want non-dairy muffins)
2 tsp non-wheat mustard
2 eggs
1,5 cups buckwheat flour
3 tsp baking powder
salt and pepper

Cook the pumpkins. Mix all ingredients except sunflower seeds, walnuts and cheese, which you add at the end. Poor into muffin-molds and bake in oven for 15-20 minutes at 200 degrees celsius.



Carrot Pumpkin B'day Cake

2 dl almonds
1 dl buckwheat flour
1 tsp baking powder
2 tsp cardamom
1 tsp cinnamon
2 carrots
2 apples
2 eggs
1 dl pumpkins, previously cooked together with a cinnamon stick (yammy!!!)
coconut oil to the mold

Ground almonds, buckwheat in the mixer. Add all other ingredients. Oven, 200 degrees celcius for 40 minutes (check the situation at 30 minutes).

For decoration:
Frozen mangos and strawberries mixed in mixer into frozen powder. Add on top of the cake. On top of that  you can go with whipped cream but I actually prefer oatmeal cream spiced with vanilla powder for this cake. Today I decorated with some frozen blueberries. Kids and hubby went wild on this cake! 


Sunday, November 20, 2011

LOL - Modern Time's Ice Age




The pig reminds me of the squirrel in the Ice Age movies.... and in real life, well the closest character I come to think of is my son, who is incredible witty when it comes to reaching up to the food in the kitchen. And he is definatelly more successful than the pig in getting what he wants. Luckily, there are no cookies around over here but he already knows how to open the cashew nut jar, or how to get his hands on the dates, and he likes playing around with raw eggs, knifes and hot food...go figure why I get nervous when he pulls out his chair and climbs up to the table...

Grains once again

This is exactly what I am suspecting:  Grains, gluten and its affects on (children's) body. It's what the book Wheatbelly argues and now also what this other blogger, who  has a serious track record within nutrition advice, puts forward.

But I cannot proove it, cannot get a certificate for it, cannot get myself to do something about, because simply completely eliminating gluten from a non-celiac-child feels too complicated. Especially as long as medical doctors in this country keep repeating that, since the tests are negative, there is no reason to worry...So we do not eat gluten or grains at home, but outside our home we have somewhat more relaxed rules, just because wheat is basically everywhere and without an excuse it is very hard to be hardcore.

But I do worry. I do. Was it really all about natural 2-3 year's tantrum those mega-outbursts we used to see in our today very well-balanced girl? Why do we see rebounds always after a long week of daycare food? And if it is only about being tired, why do we see similar reaction after having been at a party? What about the sudden length growth last summer? Pure coincidence?

Or is the sensitivity just connected to the low exposure to wheat and sugar these days, and that has taken away some level of body tolerance. Kind of like the effect of alcohol, I am not going to name quatities here, but let's just say that my head is not trained for parties like it used to be back in the days (grateful for that actually)... Would seem logical that sugar shocks (wheat is sugar, or glucose) in untrained bodies would have similar effects... This is the explanation I am using to keep calm and continue as usual... but what if what the blogpost above is true? Then really, I should be standing on barricades, screaming for my children's right to a grain-free childhood, both in daycare and later in school...Somehow I am still too mainstream to do just that.

So please scientists out there: do your job! Get this sorted out, fast. And make sure all medical doctors around the world know what they are supposed to give advice on. The way things are going it's not only fake doctors jeopardizing the credibility of the medical profession here in Finland. All those incredible stories of improved health being told on food blogs around the world - that is where Finnish medical society should place their efforts, not in disclaiming these stories (as they are doing now) but trying to find out the scientific truth to how we can improve health through what we eat.

Until then, the best advice I can follow is what Michael Pollan calls "Eat nothing that your great grandmother would not have recognized as food", remembering that food culture is what our mother's (or father's) taught us to eat before industrialization took over the cooking and transferred the responsibility of nutrition to state authority dietary advice.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

My point exactly

This editor in chief at the Swedish newspaper Svenska Dagbladet has an admiror in me:

The liberty to choose ends at the lunch table


What else can I say than: my point exactly! Get rid of the sugar, the wheat and the fake fat for our children's daily intake of food at daycare and school! Or at least give us, the parents, the opportunity to have a say in what our children are supposed to eat to become bright and healthy as adults!

Right now special diets in daycare or school are only allowed based on religious beliefs or medical evidences of allergies. Well, the latter is next to impossible, partly because the majority of all doctors are still convinced that animal fat kills (although studies are coming out everyday that this is a misconception) and partly because metabolic syndrome, diabetes, heart deseases, celiaki, do not appear in small children - it appears much later in life.... But still, after all the evidence out there, I believe there is a direct link between both sugar, wheat and low fat to what later become all those illnesses referred to as endemic deseases in modern Western society today.

Therefore, since I believe maybe it isn't so far fetched to consider my thoughts on sugar, wheat and fake fat as something religious and therefore justify the need of a special diet for my children. And this although, I am not even a fundamentalist... I do not think a little bit of sugar (wheat debatable) is bad. Neither do I think small amounts of the wrong kind of fat once in a while will lead to serious complications. But eating it daily, repeatedly, from the age of one until the age of 18... well that is not what I define as "a little bit". Problem is, although I have a slight feeling (to say the least) of having experienced salvation with the impacts that both the low carb high fat and later the wise choice diet have had on both myself and my family, these food lifestyles are far from being religious movements...

If you want more thoughts on this issue, check out the Swedish post on the blog Naturlig mat i skolan Harder to get real butter (in Swedish) or the Finnish post from a lowcarb blogger: School Food (In Finnish).

Note: I have to confess, I have not been very active myself in improving my childrens daycare diet. There are several reasons for this - mostly very very complicated issues. And therefore, this post should not been seen as any kind of distrust in the people that take care of my children. They are doing a great job! And yes I am very happy that our kid's daycare is blessed with a super-chef-a-la-Jamie-Oliver that manages to spice up all these premade powder-based pots and boxes that he receives in the daycare kitchen each day. Things could be worse...

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Chocolate mousse

This is what the kids had in the evening yesterday after a day filled with loose principles from my side (spagetti, bread/croissant - thanks E&R, it was great, and I mean it! - then pizza and ice cream). No surprise that 10% fatfilled yogurt was rejected firmly just before bedtime...What these bellies were screaming for was more sweet stuff... So instead I made some use of the avocados that were anyway on the brink of going bad, and I spiced them up with some more nutrious ingredients as well.

Chocolate mousse: (adapted from "Råsmart Familj")

2 avocados
1/3 of middle sized zucchini (this ingredient was included to make more out of the two avocados)
1 frozen organic spinach button (30g?)
1,5 bananas
0,5 dl cacao
1 tbls coconut oil
tiny bit of salt and unsweetned vanilla powder

Mix all ingredients with a mixer and serve as such. This mousse is still eatable the next day, as in contrast to smashed avocado, it doesn't matter if it goes brown - nobody will notice.

You can add some nuts to the mousse if you want to make it even more nutrious. cashew and maybe walnut should be good choices. We just sprinkled some dried berry flakes on top; Kidone chose pink cranberry flakes, Kidone was served yellow buckthorn berry flakes - for the sake of the c-vitamines, he's still got a cough!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Goodbye Agave!!!

For those of you who thought Agave is the answer to your sweet tooth.... please read this blog post:

Goodbye fructose


This gets me thinking about fruits... hmmm.... probably not a good idea to overconsume fruits either...

Better just forget sweet taste all together and get your tastebud appreciate other sensations instead. Easy to say, hard to implement... I know... because come on - how far can you go on only nuts and cheese?

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Finnish Food Evolution

Check this out!

Finnish dietary advice

It shows clearly the changes in the (recommended) Finnish food diet since the 50's.

Alarming to me is how wheat as pushed itself into many of the different parts: white wheat bread from the 70's (before that we where only recommended to eat rye and oatmeal grains!), sausages in the protein section from the 80's (they contain usually 70% of wheat), and pasta together with potatoes (!!!) and those other roots kicked out of the root section and into vegetable section...hmm....and as from the 80's sugar is also including in those (wheat-based) cinnamon buns in the bread section. This leads to my question: Once again - why are we getting fatter in this country? Is it because of the banned real fat or could it be the combination of wheat and sugar?

Other parts that I find interesting:
- the locally wild grown antioxidant-filled berries have diminished (and even disappeared in chart from the 90's) and been replaced by exotic fruits (year around - berries in the fifties probably mostly only in the summer).
- Increas of lacteos
- how industrialized food has made its entrance: yogurts, liver casserole, salami and of course: the evil margarine.
- juice in the veggies as from 90's

If we were to follow Michael Pollan's "eat only what your great grandmother would have considered as food", then I guess the best bet of them all is the recommendations from the 50's - especially if it should be locally produced...

Old cold porridge - recycled.

Ok, so the kids got tired of porridge for breakfast (they usually have oatmeal/buckwheat porridge with coconut oil/ butter for breakfast). It might have been that my attempt to pimp it up with some crushed almonds, apples and cinnamon was a big mistake yesterday. But really, can't blaim them - have been surprised for how long we've been able to feed them with that stuff without any whining.

So left was a big pot of porridge, mixed with almonds, apples, cinnamon and coconut oil, which I stored in the fridge while thinking of different solutions for the leftovers.

Solution 1: Never underestimate cold porrdige as an afternoon snack disguised as "pudding"

In the afternoon I mixed some of the porridge a bit more, added some cinnamon, apple and coconut milk to it and asked the kids if they cared to try out a new sort of afternoon snack.  I left Kidtwo in the kitchen, with a bowl of "pure pudding" and another one with pudding mixed with Greek yogurt. When I returned 5 minutes later, he had eaten it all and was about to attack Kidone's bowl as well. I was a bit skeptical to whether kidone would like this stuff. After all, she was already chewing a carrot. Well, with confindence in my voice I introduced the new snack to her as well. She tasted it, said "this is good" and some spoons later she looked at me with a suspicious look and asked "mom, is this porridge?". Damn, I thought, busted! But answered calmly "no my dear, its pudding." And with that affirmation, she as well finished her bowl.

Solution 2: You can make pancakes out of almost anything - as long as you have eggs

The rest of the batch came handy this morning as I added three eggs and some baking soda and fried 5 pancakes in coconutoul for breakfast. Kids had two each, and I made an exception from my lowcarb breakfast policy and ate one as well. Yummy.

Recipee for this (adapted from Wise Choice cookbook):
1 dl oatmeal
0,5 dl buckwheat
3 dl water
10-15 grinded almonds
half an apple
coconut oil
cinnamon
3 eggs
1 teaspoon baking soda

Make porridge out of oatmeal, buckwheat and water. Add grinded almonds, apple, coconut oil and cinnamon. Mix. Add eggs and baking soda and mix again. Fry in coconut oil.

Enjoy with some mashed bananas or berries!

Hey, give me some credits for doing this early in the morning...especially considering the zombie that I found occupying my body as I dragged myself out of bed this morning (and jumped straight back in as soon as kids had been placed in front of pikku2 on telly. And no, I am not going to bed at 10 p.m. right now - I am working to compensate for my day job preventing 2xcough from evolving to neumonia...).

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Off topic - but still important...

This is why I prefer second hand these days:

Dangerous clothing (in Finnish but also in French and German)

Better let some one else be poisoned before I take a garment into possesion. In the past 4 months I have bought two second hand jackets - both good once!

Shoes is a problem. Big one. So far I have solved that problem with not buying any shoes at all...

But maybe favoring local is the solution, just as with food: local, organic, fair trade...whatever guarantee that is...

The French jeans representative in the movie: "Maintenant c'est tres contolé". Citing hubby:  "yeah right....."

Hold on... not even organic is safe...

The Indian dyer (dye is not organic!) regarding how they control that normal cotton does not get mixed up with organic: "This is India", laughs....

Natural food in school

Excellent iniciative in Sweden: Naturlig mat i skolan, a blog about trying to raise awareness of current school food and advocating for natural food back into the school lunches.
I have previously blogged about my opinion on the subject, but under my old blog. You can check for example: Patiperra: Operation Dagismat, or my last post on that blog: Patiperra: Another brain release.

I could talk/write for hours on this topic...but right now I have limited time, as always these days. So that is why I am happy that some one else is doing it for me... if it only was directed to a Finnish audience as well... Another two years left before we start school in this family, is it enough time to get a shift in politician's priorities and state dietary recommendations?

Monday, October 31, 2011

Twist and turns, also in my home country!

Now it is not only Swedish traditional media that is jumping on the low carb train. Today Finland's main newspaper, Helsingin Sanomat takes a balanced stand on the diet as well. For those of you blessed with the knowledge of our beautiful language, here the editor's opinion: It's not worth it to put down the low carb diet.

I guess the editor is reacting on the tv debate some days ago, which I had already made some reflections about but not yet had time to publish here on my blog.

Some days ago I saw a debate on low carb diet on Finnish National Television. As usual, there were the two sides represented among the debators: pro-fat/low carb and pro-low fat/"high fiber through carbs". I was amazed to see how the low carb (high fat) society is gaining territory through simply stating the personal benefits such diet has brought on their life while it seems as if the official state position of defending low fat does just not sound so convincing anymore. Or is it just me interpreting things here? It can't be, super markets are sold out on butter and lowcarb articles are present even in all evening press editions - also here on the eastern side of the pond.


What really puzzles me in this current food debate is that there are researchers out there that are not interested in digging into some real interesting topics, which clear potentials of making remarkable contributions to science and instead they claim that there are more valuable areas to which they can dedicate their time. Somehow their argument that where they get their financing has nothing to do with what they do research about just does not sound so convincing . So once again, why don't they want to do research that can bring them fame and glory then?

To be clear on things here, I am not promoting a Low Carb High Fat diet to anyone! I am in favor of everyone figuring out what their own body needs. Even more so after having read Michael Pollan's  very balanced book "In defense of food" this weekend. However, the connection between LCHF and "real food" for common people is usually that when you go on a carb-detox a la LCHF you quickly notice how much space in the grocery store is completely useless because it is occupied by products that according to Pollan's arguments "would not be recognized as food by your great grand mother". You start reading labels and you realize how much stuff is filled with substances that you do not want nowhere near your metabolic system. This is not food, says Pollan, this is food science and if you want to live a long and healthy life, you'd better stay away from those products.

There, two flies in one. You can see the Finnish telly debate here: A Talk - karppaaminen.

And if you're interested in Pollan then please check out his homepage: In Defense of Food

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Sunday Pizza!

Sunday evening, post-party feeling among parents (kids happily unaware of our halloween countriside ventures last night) and a very long day from having turned the time towards winter time last night... what else than pizza on such a day?

Ok, now you might be puzzled...me, pizza? And what about the wheat free stuff? I figured out a way around the problem. It's not exactly wise choice, since the pizza contained a lot of cheese (not lacteo-free) but I still think it is decent in nutrion.

The pizza was made on fiberhusk, yest, water, olive oil, buckwheat flour, rice flour and grounded sunflower seeds. As a topping I dug out what I could find: tomatoe sause, tuna, zucchini, yellow sweet chili and a lot of cheese.

The pizza was such a success that there are no pictures of the creation. Neither do I have the time to sort out the exact amount of each ingredient right now.  But I can say this: my tummy is smiling!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

To balance things out a bit...

Ok, after reading that book about wheat I have had serious problems to completely accept the obvious and evident truth that the author is proposing... It sounds intriguing and some parts of it is probably more than true, although scientific studies are not accounted for to give him more credibility in his arguments.

This paleo-blogger was a welcomed balance in this crazy information flow:

http://huntgatherlove.com/content/wheat-belly

Very well contested. Just what I needed, somebody to sort out my own thoughts, with balanced arguments.

Still, I am highly suspicious to both wheat and sugar. It might be anecdotal and not scientifically prooven, but for my body they did mess up an awful lot of things.

The Concept of Truth

What is truth? What is knowledge? And what are beliefs? Philosophical questions that are also present in the debate over who is right and who is wrong regarding the harms or benefits of animal fats.

Well, it all depends on who you ask, and maybe even more important is the question of when you ask. Just a couple of years ago, a Swedish phycisian was excluded from the national doctors society because she was prescribing High Fat (and low carb) diets to her diabetes patients. The doctors society regarded her prescription "life threatening". But court gave her the right and she could continue practicing medicine.

Today more and more people are starting to question the concept of truth in the butter-paranoid dietary advices. When scientific evidence has been scares, people have instead relied on their beliefs in the LCHF-movement, supported by numerous descriptive stories of formerly obese diabetics, today healthy and energetic low carb high fat eaters. Now these beliefs are being backed up by an increasing amount of scientific studies as well. Like this one showing evidence that sugar increases the risk of heart deseases while there seems to be no correlation to fat.

Sugar increases the risk of heart dease (In Swedish)

Are we seing a shift in the concept of truth here? In the end, who is it actually that has the facts and who has the beliefs?

Interesting times we are living...

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

White desire - in English

I guess the equivalent in English to the recent Swedish book "White Desire" would be this one:


Suicide by Sugar


Here is the description of the book:

"
It is a dangerous, addictive white powder that can be found in abundance throughout this country. It is not illegal. In fact, it is available near playgrounds, schools, and workplaces. It is in practically everything we eat and drink, and once we are hooked on it, the cravings can be overwhelming. This white substance of abuse is sugar.

Over two decades ago, Nancy Appleton’s Lick the Sugar Habit exposed the health dangers of America’s high-sugar diet. Now, in Suicide by Sugar, Appleton, along with journalist G.N. Jacobs, presents a broader view of the problems caused by our favorite ingredient. The authors offer startling facts that link a range of disorders—from dementia and hypoglycemia to obesity and cancer—to our growing sugar addiction. Rounding out the book is a sound diet plan along with a number of recipes for sweet, easy-to prepare dishes—all made without sugar or fruit.

I was about to buy it but decided not to. I kind of get the message from having last summer watched Dr. Robert Lustig's 90 minutes lecture on "the bitter truth about sugar" (check the side bar) and having read "Wheat  Belly"...Instead I put my efforts into other dense reading - more in line with my main interests...remember, this is only a hobby...while cooking food for my family is basically about - staying alive.

Monday, October 24, 2011

White desire

 Now there is a new book in Swedish about sugar addiction. It's called "Vitt begär" (White desire) and I can recognize much of my own battle in this book.

Here is her blog, if anyone is interested:

http://vittbegar.blogspot.com/

For me, going off sugar has been the best deicision of my life. It has made me aware of what that substance did to my body and it has given me a healthier relationship to food all in all.

It wasn't easy to let go, but once I had said bye bye to both sugar and wheat I could start enjoying a happier life! I am very greatful for all these stories being made public today, because what if I'd had to struggle the rest of my life with this addiction, without anywhere to turn? Today you can find support in thousands of blogs and web-discussions, there are cook books and help-yourself-books. Really, it has never been so easy to go sugarfree... eh, wait a minute....never so hard either. Because anywhere you go, you will have the sugar there right in your face. So if you really want to get rid of the curse, it isn't that easy to start with... but I can assure you, it is definatelly worth a try!!!


Bytheway, I made some muffins after all. Bought almond flour from the store. Problem solved: blueberry and chocolate muffins it is for tomorrow's coffee!

That sweet coffee bread...

I am in a battle with myself right now. It just happens that as I finished the book on how bad actually wheat is for the human body, I am also tomorrow supposed to be serving coffee and something to go with the coffee for my colleagues. Talk about bad timing! To make this situation even worse our food processor decided to brake down (again, second time this year, Gigantti better be faster this time, last time the service took 4 weeks!) and so I can hardly make any muffins or alike, especially not for more than 10 persons without the help of my almond grinder...

So do I go to the bakery down the street to pick up some wheat and sugar filled cinnamon buns, although painfully aware of the multiple harm these buns provoke on (most) human bodies? Or do I only pick up some nuts and fruits from the grocery store and let the sweet tooth of my colleagues go unnoticed? To be or not to be - the freak - that is the question at stake over here right now.... A possible solution would be some glutenfree coffee bread, although this is still against my principle of avoiding sugar dense products (rising bloodsugar - insuline - insuline resistance). On the other hand, not having a clue of how bloodsugar is affected by the "wise choice" bakeries baked at home with dates and bananas (it might even be worse than white sugar, how would I know, I haven't checked....), I might as well skip that principle right away.

It just feels really awkard after having undressed the truth about sugar and wheat to then the next day be offering, as a kind gesture, such baked products to others (not eating it myself, of course). I mean, who would as a kind gesture be giving away cigarettes at a coffee break at work? You might think I am overreacting here, but I guess that is fairly normal reaction to the potent message transmitted through the very informative book by Mr. Davis...

And no, I have no intentions to go into details or lecturing on the harms of wheat tomorrow... I rather stay focused on my work...so maybe just because of that I'll skip my principles for one day and go and pick up a tasty 'pullapitko' down the street. It's their coice if they eat it or not, right? And at least I am giving my support to the local SME, small contribution to make our neighbourhood flourish! The bakeries can't have it easy these days, with all the talk about low carb and the 'evil' bread...

And that is how I justify my choices. Simple as that! I thank my blog for having helped me in my agony.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Inspiring, Impressive, Insane

Much of this relates to my own journey of discovery. Have not emailed Erin Brokovich yet, but then again I live in Finland, not in USA. On the other hand, although she is criticing the food politics and food safety in the United States, I do not think we have it much better over here....



Physillium bread

I think I was a little bit too enthusiastic foodie last weekend... Thanking myself this week that there were a lot of left overs left from Monday to Thursday. Today is the first day I have plan ahead what to cook for dinner. Still have not decided.

My only input in the kitchen this week, except for porridge and heated food has been Physsilium based bread  (gluten & wheat free). The bread was good (my only doubt is the yieest - good or bad, anyone?) and now we have Kidone's Thursday picnic food solved for a month ahead (4 pieces in the freezer) - you can imagine that she was happy to have bread in her bag after 2 months on eggs, carrots, nuts and apples. I guess peer pressure is quite powerful already at the age of 4.

Here is the recipe:

25 g yeest
2,5 dl water or milk (I happened to have unpastorized, unhomogenized goat milk and used that one)
0,5 tbls Fiberhusk (powdered physsilium seeds)
1 tbls olive oil
1 tsp salt
3 dl buckwheat flour.

Heat the liquid to 37 degree and add the yeest and fiberhusk. Mix and let this swell for 10 minutes. Add the rest. Make small buns and let swell for another 35-45 minutes. Owen, 200 degrees, 10-15 minutes.



Enjoy!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

How to kill a pumpkin

I bought a pumpkin yesterday. Pumpkins are not part of the traditional Finnish october Offerings, but I guess it has become more usual together with the imported Halloween traditions. Anyways, there I was with 5 kilos of pumpkin in the kitchen and not a clue of what do to with it (except a Jack-o-Latern, which would of course have delighted the younger generation in our family). Well, today I managed to slice it in bits and pieces and make some natural food with no sugar, no wheat, no milk added.



Pumpkin-carrot-white bean soup:
400 g pumpkin
3 carrots
water
vegetable spices
4 dl coconut milk
tamari
fresh ginger
variety of herbs

Boil pumpkin and carrots (sliced into cubes) in water with veggie spices until soft. Throw away most of the water. add coconutmilk, tamari, herbs and som fresh ginger. Mix it all. Add water if needed. Enjoy!

Carrot-pumpkin cake
(adapted from Renée Voltaire's book "Salig Blanding)

Base;
1 dl almonds
1 dl hazelnuts
2,5 dl dried (unswetened) apricots (lay in water 30 minutes before use)

Mix all the three ingredients and cover the bottom of the baking tin with it. The baking tin should be one of those where you can separate the walls from the bottom.

Topping:
8 dl carrots, pealed and grated
250 g cooked pumpkins
4 dl cashew nuts (lay in water before use)
2 dl higs (in water before use)
2 dl dates
3 tbsp coconut oil
1,5 tsp vanilla powder (no sugar)
1 tsp ginger powder
3 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp cardamom
pecan nuts for decoration

Mix all ingredients to a smooth blend. Add water if too dry, cashews if too watery. Add the blend on top of the cake tin and place it in the refrigerator for an hour. Remove the walls of the cake before serving and decorate it with the pecan nuts at the end.

Note: kids liked both the soup and the cake. I am amazed. I have never been able to get them to eat beans before. Now they did not even notice them. I also thought they would find the cake to spicy. But no, they had two slices each. Other invited kids (and adults) also like the cake.

Now I have 4 liters of pumpkin soup in the freezer. The freezer is after today also equipped with some 30 falafels (first time I managed to make the falafels without having to add egg to keep them together!) and some 10 kilos of pre-cooked chick peas, black beans and white beans. Its been a busy weekend, and hopefully this will make the weeks to come less hectic!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

A MUST READ!!!

I was going to sum up the message of the book "Wheat Belly" once I had finished it but knowing me, there is a (very high) risk of that never happening. Especially now with so much else to read. But the message in this book is probably the most important one, at least as important as Eenfeldt's message in his book "Food Revolution" (so far available only in Swedish, Norwegian and Finnish).

So please all of you who would like to improve your (future) health, not  by medicine but by eating the right stuff please read this review of the book. It says it all.

Wheat Belly Review

And when you're done reading that you might as well get the book itself. I have it, those in the neighbourhood are more than welcomed to borrow my piece (after having had my whole family reading it first...so you'll have to wait until Christmas or next year).

"Hold the toast" is my new discovery of the day. Excellent blog. She has apparently been lowcarb for 10 years already and she is also into the connection of ADHD and low carb, which particularly is of interest to me having observed remarkable shifts in my own and the kids behavior by excluding wheat, sugar and a serious cut down in milk consumption. Hold the toast sails straight into my blog list on the right side of my blog, where by the way Mr Davis' Wheat Belly already has secured its position as one of the most interesting diet blogs out there.

Swedish chef

I have just had the honor to be nominated Swedish chef by hubby. Wonder why? (Hint: check the mess in  this movie...)






But the food was apparently good....

Friday, October 14, 2011

When Public Opinion changes

Sweden is ahead of the rest of the world in the ongoing food debate. This much because of some (one) brave medical doctors that dared going against the state diet recommendations for overweight and diabetes patients. Instead of low colesterol and high carb diet, these doctors are recommending low carb and high (animal) fat to their patients, with encouraging results. However, the debate hase been highly controversial, and media has been hesitant to show support for this "fanatical fat movement". Discussion boards and blogs on Internet have instead been an effective source of information for those wanting to get rid of their sweet tooth and start a new life, high in fat. But today, in one of Swedens most important news papers, the editor's letter is giving a strong signal of where the traditional media debate is heading:

Rather fatty than fruity (in Swedish)

Apparently parents of kids in Sweden are supposed to bring fruits for the kids' afternoon snack so that the kids do not get hungry. Nice! If we could get the sugarfilled berry soups replaced with real fruit, that would certainly be a nice start! But some parents got apparently upset about this because it is not supposed to cost anything to take your kids to school... Well, the editor here reacted saying that if the lunch would be rich in fat and protein instead of rich in (wheat flour) carbohydrates and low fat margarine, kids bloodsugar would not drop two hours later and they would not need that fruit. He has a point. And hopefully the authorities start noticing the demands coming from the masses, especially now as this text can be a real sign of  an official shift in the public opinion debate.

And once they are done debating and implementing on the other side of the pond, I really hope the vibes make it fairly fast all the way over to Finland as well. I am thorn on how to deal with the daycare food that my kids receive every day. One the one hand, it is fine that their diet is somewhat balanced, I truly believe there is someone planning a diverse warm food for our children. But on the other hand, having here at home done the switch from margarine to butter, from fat free to fatty, from wheat to wheatfree and from sugar to natural, I know that a balanced diet is the key to balanced and focused kids. Less carbs, more fat lead to less hunger and more concentration. I do not buy into the colesterol-agenda anymore. How can a diet that is based on natural food and that makes you feel healthy be bad? And yes, it is really hard for me to accept the fact that they are fed  margarine everyday (and once I am done reading "wheat belly" I will probably also be horrified with the wheat...). I would really like to be sure that once my kids hit their teens, they're not heading to the local grocery store each day to get their hunger satisfied with energy drinks and cookies - as the youths currently are doing; yes big mama watching them everyday as they walk by...Do their parents know? Do they care? I would

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Our daily bread

Ok, this program messes with my mind. I need to stop watching it... But it is just so informative on how we used to eat, in the past.

Landet Brunsås: det söta brödet

This weeks program is about the daily (sweet) bread of Sweden. Very interesting once again but it is clear that they have not read the book Wheat Belly that I fell asleep to last night (its interesting stuff, but I had read some 15 academic articles during the day, you get dizzy with less, especially as my 13 year old reading glasses are mysteriously lost). According to Mr. Wheat Belly, wheat has been crossbread and manipulated in the past 60 years so much that it is nowhere close to "natural wheat". Its a hybride, its addictive, and.... it is the cause of some very spooky (and common) deseases. Guess where the title comes from?

Done blogging for today, think I even filled the quota for the rest of the week tonight. Be good! And, please comment, if you're out there!

Interactivity!

Hey guys, I am not on Facebook anymore! If you're reading, please comment! Swedish, Finnish, Spanish, German, French - any language will do!

On the way home today...

I past by Hakaniemi and got some food. My back almost broke as I biked home with some 10 books, 50 articles and all this in my back pack:



Once again, the Asian&African stores on Hämeentie rox this planet! The only down side to this place is exactly that, the place, it is not close enough to make life easy. They have so much good stuff, so much cheaper than in the normal stores. You'll find big bags of coconut flour, chick peas, beans, lentils, phsylllium flour (which costs a fortune at Stockmann!), cashew nuts, unsweetened ginger (why on earth is all dried ginger in normal stores always sweetened???). My new discovery of the day: Tamarind. It looked like dates and I didn't dare to ask at the cashier what it is (my paranoia of the freak syndrome again, stupid, yes I know) so I kind of bought a "suprise package". It was sweet and sour. Interesting taste. Will see if I find use for it at some point.

Today we ate liver, fresh from the Hakaniemi indoor market. Haven't had that since I was a child, and then hated it. Now it tasted really delicious. The kids liked it as well (ok, kidone agreed to eat once she could pretend she was a dinosaur, table manners will be trained later, right now we are in survival mode...). This won't be part of our daily diet, but I think it is good to eat a variety of foods - including those high in vitamines that we normally do not eat.

I also got some fresh elk minced meat. How much more ecological can one be? Yes, I am not too happy about the ecological footprint that all our coconut products, nuts, beans, avocado and quinoa leaves behind...so this elk meat, which tomorrow will be included in a lasagna (where the pasta has been replaced with eggplants) comes handy. Its fresh, its local, it saves human lives (by not being the cause of accidents on our highways), and above all: its very ecological (except if the poor elk has chewed some pesticide bushes in the wild, you never know these days...)!

About that Paleo diet again

Here, another LCHF-blogger, this one concentrates on LCHF and training.

Anyway, interestingly enough I found a post on exactly what I was writing about the other day: the paleo diet and about milk in our modern diet as supposed to what our ancestors ate.

http://www.jonasbergqvist.se/sidor/tankar-om-mat/

Unfortunatelly the blog is in Swedish. Google-translate, for my foreign friends, maybe?

Monday, October 10, 2011

About baby food!

Very interesting program on the ingredients in the premade baby food cans. This mother has bad bad concious now. Kidone never ate those (surprise?) but Kidtwo is breeded on them, between 6 and 12 months. Hard to imagine now but at that point it was a matter of my own survival....

Testing tonight's dinner for lunch


I have put the home office under siege today (just take a look at the Finnish wheather forecast and you'll understand why). At lunch time I decided to do some efficient "home work"; test my own recipee on spinach and chantarelle pancakes with the purpose to introduce it to the critical masses at dinner. It past the first test. Now to wait and see if this can be the answer to how to get the kids to eat delicious mushrooms (chantarelles, Finnish forest's golden plant!)  and how to replace those industrial-made spinach pancakes with something a little bit more nutritious.

Whatever the kid's verdict is, I can still share the recipee with the rest of you because my own, very biased, opinion was that this was goody good!


Spinach and Chantarelle pancakes:

5 eggs
2 dl creamy coconut milk (the package where the water part is not included)
1,5 dl almond cross (left overs from the almond milk I made this morning, I guess you can take normal almonds as well)
some chantarelles (previously fried in coconut oil)
2 small cubes of frozen spinach
coconut oil for frying

Mix all ingredients and add the eggs when the rest is well mixed. Fry in a lot of coconut oil. Since the pancakes do not contain gluten, they easily fall apart if you do not let them fry for longer than usual pancakes. Its a bit tricky to get them in one piece out of the frying pan, but with practice and patience it all turns out just perfect!