Better Nutrition August 2020 Magazine

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AUGUST 2020 *


Kids’ Nutrition:

MCT vs. Coconut Oil: What’s the Difference (and yes, there is one!) p. 38

Creative Lunch Ideas for School or Home FIND OUT WHY YOU ARE ALWAYS



8 Foods Loaded with VITAMIN C

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SCIENCED-BASED FORMULAS YOU CAN TRUST Garden of Life is proud to introduce our new Dr. Formulated


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August 2020 / Vol. 82 / No. 8

6 NEWSBITES How to Use Essential Oil Sprays to Ward Off Ticks Protect yourself the natural way.

10 PASSION BEHIND THE PRODUCT Purely Elizabeth This company started with a single batch of muffins.

12 IN THE SPOTLIGHT Crystal Clear Ease anxiety, curb cravings, and more with healing stones.

14 HOT BUYS Enhance Your Wellness Natural products we’re excited about.

16 CHECK OUT Beta-Glucans: What You Need to Know The amazing health benefits of these unheralded immune boosters.

features Up the Fun with 26 Pack Healthy Kids’ Lunches

Whether your kids are heading back to their brick-and-mortar school this fall, or distance-learning around the kitchen table, nothing ensures academic success like a healthy diet. Packed with flavor and oh-so-easy to make, these delicious recipes will help you get the school year off on the right track.

Easy Ways to Make Your 32 7Immune System Stronger

In these days of global pandemics, maintaining your natural defenses against harmful invaders has never been more important. And the good news is that it’s also never been easier. Here are seven simple strategies for healthful living—including diet, exercise, and supplement advice—that anyone can adopt to defend against illness.

18 NATURAL REMEDY Can Improving Heart Health Reduce COVID Risk? The short answer is: Yes!

22 ASK THE NATUROPATHIC DOCTOR Why Am I Always Tired? Causes and cures for chronic fatigue.

24 NATURAL BEAUTY Oils and Serums for Hair Repair Nourish your overstressed tresses.

38 ASK THE NUTRITIONIST MCT Oil vs. Coconut Oil: What’s the Difference? Sorting out these popular fats.

42 HEALTHY DISH Cooking with Whole Fish Serious next-level grilling tips.

44 EATING4HEALTH Get More Vitamin C Great sources that aren’t oranges.

46 RECIPE4HEALTH A Taste of India Spice it up with tandoori chicken.

48 COOK WITH SUPPLEMENTS Crazy for Keto Chaffles Meet the low-carb answer to waffles.

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CLICK ON THIS! RESOURCES & REFERENCES For links to studies cited in our articles and other helpful sites and books, visit


Be Well: ImmuneBoosting Foods, Recipes, & Herbs Here’s a way to make the munchies support your immune system—and fight the Quarantine 15—with five easy, healthy treats for any occasion. Plus, learn about the seven things that weaken your immune system, and read up on four immune-fortifying herbs you’ll want to take.


EDITORS’ BLOG We’re answering questions and sharing natural solutions for everyday wellness. New blogs monthly, including Guest Editor posts from leading-edge health experts such as Jonny Bowden, PhD, RD. SIGN UP FOR OUR NEWSLETTER Receive timely articles, recipes, eBooks, and exclusive giveaways in your inbox weekly with our newsletter Healthy Buzz.

Photo: (cover) ; (this page) Pornchai Mittongtare; Styling: Robin Turk; Food Stylist: Claire Stancer


Make nutrition fun again with our selection of healthy, kid-friendly recipes— including these Macaroni Pizza bites.


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All About Immunity I recently heard from a reader who requested more information on immune health. He wanted to know how he and his family and friends could continue to stay healthy using herbs and other natural remedies. “Please keep all the immunity tips coming,” he said. You got it! We’ve stepped up our coverage on immune health since the coronavirus pandemic began. And this month is no exception. There’s advice on fortifying your defenses, adopting healthier habits, making healthy (and fun!) lunches for your kids, using beta-glucan supplements to enhance immune function, adding vitamin C-rich foods to your diet, and more. Almost every article is related, in one way or another. For advice on COVID-19 from the front lines, we turned to Jeanette Ryan, DC, IFMCP, who wrote “Can Improving Heart Health Reduce COVID Risk?” on p. 18. Ryan has been treating patients with mild cases of the virus using natural therapies. “There are a number of things you can do to greatly improve your immune response and avoid becoming infected with COVID-19, and then if you do, to lessen the severity of symptoms,” says Ryan. When it comes down to it, immune health is at the core of our overall health and well-being—and preserving it has never been more critical. Consider us your source for natural immune health. Also, head to for additional content and blogs on this topic, including related articles on stress, depression, exercise, and more. Be well!


Our Writers

Meet the passionate people behind this issue of Better Nutrition!


Jeannette Bessinger, CHHC, is an award-winning educator, author of multiple books, and a real food chef. She’s helped thousands of people make lasting changes to unhealthy habits.


Jonny Bowden, PhD, CNS, is a boardcertified nutritionist and the bestselling author of 15 books, including The 150 Healthiest Foods on Earth and Living Low Carb.


Kimberly Lord Stewart is an awardwinning journalist who has worked for leading natural product publications since 1996. She’s the author of Eating Between the Lines.


Emily A. Kane, ND, LAc, has a private practice in Juneau, Alaska, where she lives with her husband and daughter. She is the author of two books on natural health, including Managing Menopause Naturally.


Chris Mann is a California-based wellness writer and interviewer with 20 years’ experience in natural health publishing. He is also an entertainment author and podcaster.


Jeanette Ryan, DC, IFMCP, is a Los Angeles-based functional medicine doctor known for her integrated and highly customized healing programs.


Melissa Diane Smith, Dipl. Nutr., is a holistic nutritionist who has 25 years of clinical experience and specializes in using food as medicine. She is the author of Going Against GMOs and other books.


Sherrie Strausfogel has been writing about natural beauty for more than 20 years. Based in Honolulu, she also writes about spas, wellness, and travel. She is the author of Hawaii’s Spa Experience.


Lisa Turner is a chef, food writer, product developer, and nutrition coach in Boulder, Colo. She has more than 20 years of experience in researching and writing about nourishing foods.


Vera Tweed has been writing about supplements, holistic nutrition, and fitness for more than 20 years. She is the editorial director at Natural Health Connections and author of Hormone Harmony.


Neil Zevnik is a private chef specializing in healthy cuisine, with clients who have included Jennifer Garner, Charlize Theron, and the CEO of Disney.


Editor in Chief Creative Director Executive Editor Associate Editor Digital Editor Copy Editor Beauty Editor

Nicole Brechka Rachel Joyosa Jerry Shaver Elizabeth Fisher Maureen Farrar James Naples Sherrie Strausfogel

Contributing Editors Vera Tweed, Helen Gray Contributing Writers Jonny Bowden, PhD, CNS, Jeannette Bessinger, CHHC, Emily A. Kane, ND, LAc, Chris Mann, Jeanette Ryan, DC, Melissa Diane Smith, Kim Stewart, Lisa Turner, Neil Zevnik Print Ad Coordinator Kim Hoff Prepress Manager Joy Kelley Prepress Specialist Idania Mentana Editorial Offices 512 Main Street, Suite 1 El Segundo, CA 90245 310-873-6952 General Manager Rob Lutz AIM Retail Group 970-291-9029 Integrated Media Sales Kevin Gillespie Director Director of Retail Sales Joshua Kelly 800-443-4974, ext. 702 (For front cover imprint changes, email or call 702-587-8583) Senior Brand Marketing Kristen Zohn Manager 917-860-8733 Marketing Designer Judith Nesnadny Accounting & Billing Linda Koerner 513-318-0325


Chairman & CEO Andrew W. Clurman Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer Brian Sellstrom Chief Technology Officer Nelson Saenz Senior Vice President of Operations Patricia B. Fox Vice President, Production and Manufacturing Barb Van Sickle Vice President, People & Places JoAnn Thomas AIM Board Chair Efrem Zimbalist III BetterNutritionMagazine betternutrition bnutritionmag betternutritionmag

BETTER NUTRITION, ISSN #0405-668X. Vol. 82, No. 8. Published monthly by Cruz Bay Publishing, an Active Interest Media company. 5720 Flatiron Parkway, Boulder, CO 80301; 303-253-6300; fax 303-443-9757. ©2020 Cruz Bay Publishing. All rights reserved. Mechanical requirements and circulation listed in Standard Rate and Data Service. The opinions expressed by the columnists and contributors to BETTER NUTRITION are not necessarily those of the editor or publisher. Fraudulent or objectionable advertising is not knowingly accepted. Advertisers and advertising agencies assume liability for all content of advertising and for any claims arising therefrom. Articles appearing in BETTER NUTRITION may not be reproduced in whole or in part without the express permission of the publisher. BETTER NUTRITION does not endorse any form of medical treatment. The information presented here is not meant to diagnose or treat any medical condition. We urge you to see a physician or other medical professional before undertaking any form of medical treatment.

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TO WARD OFF TICKS In many areas of the country, ticks are a hazard to reckon with while enjoying the outdoors. They attach to your skin, feed on your blood, and can transmit Lyme disease or other infections in the process. Chemical repellents, such as DEET, are effective, but toxic. Luckily, they aren’t the only choice. “Essential oil sprays can be helpful,” says Drew Sinatra, ND, a naturopath in Northern California who treats many patients with Lyme disease and other tick-borne infections. While essential oils aren’t always enough, he adds, “They’re certainly less toxic.” When Essential Oils Work Best Essential oils work best where the vegetation is not too dense. “If people are going out hiking on trails and they’re not in tall grass or the bushes—where they’re touching a lot of the plant matter—I think they’ll be safe,” says Sinatra. But a chemical repellent may be more prudent when you’re heading into dense wilderness.

Ticks can tell that you’re coming by detecting breath, body odors, body heat, moisture, and vibrations. Essential oils (and chemical bug sprays) interfere with the ticks’ senses, making you less desirable as a host. When added to a carrier oil, such as coconut oil, these are some of the main essential oils that repel ticks and other insects:

* * * * * * * * * *

Geranium Cedarwood Peppermint Rosemary Thyme Castor Citronella Clove bud Lemongrass Soybean

Many of these oils can be found in natural bug sprays and balms for people and pets. Apply every 30–60 minutes.


Other Essential Precautions Regardless of the type of repellent, Sinatra emphasizes one basic step: “You have to be doing regular tick checks.” When hiking in dense vegetation, wear light-colored clothing, tuck pants into boots, and look for ticks—often. Watch out for ticks in decaying leaves on the ground, as well.

Essential Oils to Look For


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NEED AN * IMMUNE BOOST ? TRY OUR ALOE VERA JUICE! Clinically Proven to Increase White Blood Cell Counts by 16%!* Clinically Proven to Increase Absorption of Vitamin C by 2000%!* Generally Recognized As Safe (GRAS Certified) to Use Daily Made with Our Own Organically-Grown Plants

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Just 8 weeks of eating more vegetables and fruits and less junk food lowered blood pressure and reduced heart damage in a study of more than 300 women and men with an average age of 45. The critical change was increasing the number of vegetable-and-fruit servings from about 3.5 daily—the American average—to about 9 servings per day while eliminating most junk food and sweets.




An animal study has found that BioCell collagen, an ingredient in many supplements, protects against damage from the sun’s UVB rays, reducing skin inflammation, loss of moisture, loss of elasticity, and wrinkling. BioCell collagen is a patented, naturally occurring combination of type II collagen, chondroitin sulfate, and hyaluronic acid that is extracted from chicken sternums. An earlier study of 128 women found that BioCell helped reduce signs of aging in women’s skin compared to a placebo, improving moisture and plumpness of skin, increasing elasticity, and reducing facial lines and wrinkles. The dosage used in the study was 500 mg, taken twice daily for 12 weeks. “This landmark research is especially encouraging for women who are seeking safe and effective options for meeting their skin health and appearance goals, including those who are considering or already using cosmetic procedures to address skin aging,” says study coauthor Alexander Schauss, PhD.

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Has it been a while since you played with crayons or paints? Now may be a good time to start using them again, as multiple studies have found that making art reduces stress and anxiety. In one study of healthy adults, researchers used saliva tests to measure levels of cortisol, the stress hormone, before and 45 minutes after creating a piece of art. Levels of cortisol dropped significantly by the second test, and study participants enjoyed the experience and felt more relaxed. Another study tested the effect of making art on anxiety among college students during the week before final exams. Tests showed significantly reduced anxiety after creating the art. In both studies, participants experienced benefits regardless of their previous art experience or level of skill. And it didn’t matter what type of media they used—felt tip pens, paint, modeling clay, pencils, crayons, or other materials to create a collage. Coloring predesigned shapes was also shown to be therapeutic.



Lowers Stress and Anxiety

Make Yourself Unsinkable:

New Film Examines the Power of Positive Thinking



In the new documentary Unsinkable, Sonia Ricotti, author of a book by the same name, explores the secret to bouncing back quickly when life knocks you down. Whether it’s a global crisis, financial difficulties, a divorce, health issues, the death of a loved one, or the loss of a job, we all at some point experience the pain, hurt, and suffering of difficult events that occur in our lives. Drawing on Ricotti’s own experiences—with advice from many of the world’s bounce-back experts, scientists, and teachers—the film explains how anyone can go from feeling stressed, worried, and fearful to experiencing calm, peace, and happiness. According to the movie, about 80 percent of the thoughts we have each day are negative, and they cause most of our suffering.

Negative thoughts about events that have happened to us are stories we make up about ourselves, and they stick with us. What we put our attention on grows stronger in our lives. When we shift negative thoughts into positive ones and change limiting beliefs into empowering “can-doit” beliefs, we can shift our lives, says Ricotti. Learn more about the movie, or view it for free, at —Melissa Diane Smith

Why Exercise Improves Memory

It’s been known for some time that aerobic exercise improves memory, but research at UT Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas has only just begun to unravel why it works. A group of 30 people age 60 or older with memory problems were assigned to one of two groups for a year-long fitness program: aerobic exercise or stretching. Memory in the aerobic group increased by 47 percent but did not improve significantly in the stretching group. Brain scans, taken before and after the program, showed that aerobic exercise markedly improved blood flow to certain parts of the brain.

ROBUVIT SPEEDS UP RECOVERY FROM HYSTERECTOMY Robuvit, a patented extract from French oakwood used as an ingredient in dietary supplements, can speed up recovery from a hysterectomy, according to a European study. Compared to a placebo, Robuvit reduced common post-surgery symptoms such as fatigue, headache, nausea, depression, or pain during the first four weeks of recovery. A dose of 300 mg per day was used in the study.


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companies fostering personal & global well-being

Purely Elizabeth

How entrepreneur Elizabeth Stein turned a batch of homemade muffins into a thriving and socially conscious food business. BY NEIL ZEVNIK


“When you eat better, you feel better. It’s that simple,” says Elizabeth Stein, founder of Purely Elizabeth.

Photo: (top) Pornchai Mittongtare; Styling: Robin Turk; Food Stylist: Claire Stancer

“Start a natural foods company.” That was Elizabeth Stein’s declaration to her holistic nutrition instructor when asked about her “unpredictable future.” Not long after, she was attending a local triathlon expo to promote her newly minted nutrition services, only everyone seemed far more interested in the healthy homemade muffins she brought to lure them in. “When everyone kept asking where they could purchase the muffins, the light bulb went on,” she says. This was pretty much before anyone outside the “health food” community was aware of nutritional powerhouses such as chia seeds, quinoa, almond flour, coconut oil, and the like—all of which she had learned about in her holistic nutrition training. Her path was now clear, and thus was born Purely Elizabeth. “My mission as a nutrition counselor was to help my clients live a healthier, happier lifestyle,” says Stein. “This was a way to take that same purpose but help a much larger audience on their wellness journey. This is our guiding star and what excites me each day.” Stein admittedly knew nothing about the food business, and her learning curve was steep but successful. “I learned that you don’t have to have all the answers, just put one foot in front of the other and move it forward each day.” After starting with gluten-free muffin and pancake mixes, she continued on to create Ancient Grain granola mixes that are a healthy food lover’s dream— non-GMO, organic, gluten-free, vegan, with no additives or soy. The crowd went wild, as the saying goes, and sales skyrocketed.

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ake it!

Salmon & Asparagus Dill Rolls Serves 4 Serve this with a handful of mesclun greens dressed with olive oil and fresh lemon juice for a perfect summer supper.

2 large organic pastured eggs ¼ cup non-GMO canola oil 1/3 cup 2% organic milk 2 Tbs. water 1 cup Purely Elizabeth Ancient Grain Pancake Mix 2 Tbs. snipped fresh dill ½ tsp. kosher salt Non-GMO canola oil cooking spray 1¼ lbs. salmon fillet 1 Tbs. O Olive Oil lemon olive oil, divided 1 lb. pencil asparagus 1 cup heirloom cherry tomatoes, chopped Handful of Italian flat-leaf parsley leaves 1. Lightly whisk together eggs, oil, milk, and water. Stir in pancake mix, dill, and salt. Do not overmix.

Photo: (top) Pornchai Mittongtare; Styling: Robin Turk; Food Stylist: Claire Stancer

2. Heat 8-inch skillet over medium heat, and spray with cooking spray. Pour in ¼ cup batter and quickly tilt and turn pan to cover bottom. Cook about 40 seconds, flip, and cook 40 seconds more. Remove to plate. Continue to make pancakes (8 total) until all batter is used. (Tip: Put wax paper between pancakes on plate to prevent sticking.)

3. Preheat oven to 425°F. Place salmon on foil-lined baking sheet, drizzle with 2 tsp. lemon oil, and salt and pepper to taste. Bake 16–18 minutes until cooked through. For last 10 minutes of cooking, drizzle asparagus with remaining lemon oil and add to baking sheet with salmon. 4. Allow salmon to cool a bit, then flake into pieces. Divide the salmon and asparagus among pancakes, and roll each into a tube. Arrange two each on four dinner plates. Scatter chopped tomatoes and parsley leaves on top, and serve. Per serving: 640 cal; 38g prot; 46g total fat (10g sat fat); 20g carb; 165mg chol; 610mg sod; 5g fiber; 5g sugar

More innovative products followed, convenient foods made from cauliflower, cashews, coconut, amaranth, reishi, and flax. Stein’s latest offering is a line of pancake mixes that combine extraordinary nutrition with exceptional taste. Giving back is at the core of Purely Elizabeth. It is a certified B-Corp company that donates to nonprofits that strive to preserve the health of the planet and its inhabitants: Slow Food USA, Wellness in Schools, the Fruit Tree Planting Foundation, the Rodale Institute, Charity: Water, and more. “My greatest motivating factor was and continues to be our greater purpose. When you know your why, it makes everything you do light up.” Stein sums it up this way: “We believe that food can heal. When you eat better, you feel better. It’s that simple.” To which I reply, “Amen.” AUGUST 2020

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stay-healthy secrets from leading experts

Crystal Clear

Jewelry historian Carol Woolton, author of The New Stone Age: Ideas and Inspiration for Living with Crystals, cuts through the hype about these fascinating stones. Jewelry historian, editor, and stylist Carol Woolton has long loved crystals— from her moss agate earrings to the large Madagascan rose quartz in her sitting room. But in recent years, the London-based British Vogue jewelry editor went from purely romancing these stones to researching them and their ever-growing, widespread appeal. “I looked at the books on the market and thought none really resonated with me,” she says. “I think to me, like probably a lot of people, putting too much science in it takes the romance, the mystery, and the magic away—and I didn’t want a geology book. And at the other end of the spectrum was Win a copy of The a little bit too what New Stone Age! I say is woo-woo. We have 5 books I don’t believe if to give away. Email you put garnets your name and address to betteron your head nutritionfreebie@ you’re going to Please cure a migraine. put “Stone Age” in I wanted to know the subject line. what I did believe, and I sort of set off on this exploration that took me everywhere.” Woolton weaves historical analysis with expert interviews and the stories of empowered women sharing their experiences with these natural wonders in The New Stone Age: Ideas and Inspiration for Living with Crystals. Given the seismic shifts in daily living forced by COVID-19, the book serves even more than originally intended as a guide to thriving from the inside out.


“I couldn’t have known that when the book would be published, it would be in the middle of this pandemic,” she says, “and it was like, my God, this is kind of the worst time and the most interesting time for it come out. Because people are alone, they’re isolated, they’re desperate for that connection to nature. People

have been locked inside, they’ve missed loved ones, they want connections, and I feel like it’s a really opportune time for it to have come out. It’s the time that everyone wants to think about their well-being and how to improve and their connection with human beings and the wider world.”

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Everyone Wants to Know … BN: Which stones can help us cope with stress in these anxiety-ridden—and very often tech-overloaded—times? CW: I’ve got my black tourmaline here on my desk by my computer, and shungite is the same—that’s another black stone that kind of absorbs your own stress as well as the electromagnetic stress from your devices. I think we can all get overwhelmed by that. I know how I feel when I scroll through social media. We all do it for work, but the panic actually upsets me a bit. The black tourmaline gives you a bit of clarity and perspective, and it’s going to take all that negativity and get it away from you and act as a sort of buffer to bounce all of that out. Some people seem to suck your energy away, so it’s like a filter for it, too. As I said in the book, it chucks out anything that you haven’t really invited in. So it can protect you in that way.

BN: You write about using agate—which occur in a range of earthy colors—to revive plants and possibly revitalize your garden. How has that worked? CW: My garden is blooming! And I have to say I just love moss agate. If I ever have a difficult meeting or a difficult day, or I have to do something that I’m nervous about, I find I always get drawn to my big pair of moss agate disc earrings. They’re the ones I go to. I always wear them. And they do the trick. I feel better prepared and more confident. They’re my familiar friends to go with me.

Again, I’m just trying to have a different response to a familiar mindset when you want to do something. It’s going to help put a new default set button on that mindset that takes you back to the addictive patterns. Maybe shove it on top of the fridge, and then every time you look at it, you think, hold on a minute. This is the intention: Get near the amethyst, step away from the peanut butter. And use it in that way. A lot of people put amethyst in their bedroom, too, under their pillows to soothe an overactive mind and leave space for more positive things to come into your head and maybe more creative things.

BN: So various stones placed strategically throughout our homes—especially during lockdowns—can change our minds and thus change our lives? CW: Yes. They make you think of the wider world— which, when you’ve been locked inside, is so important—that the earth perseveres, that there is a sense of permanence. I think all our anxiety levels have shot up. If you just look at a stone and think, “we will persevere, we will survive,” you can use these stones as a comfort. If you’re feeling more relaxed, your cortisol levels drop, you feel calmer. And mindfulness has evidence-based benefits, and that can have a knock-on effect. You feel emotionally calm and you’re not making decisions based on panic and fear. You’ll make better decisions—and that’s a better way to live your life.


BN: How can we use purple amethyst to calm or contain emotional eating? CW: I’m very good at helping people have a sense of boundary and containment. I spent time with this holistic health professional named Michael Skipwith. He works with a lot of severe trauma patients with post-traumatic stress disorder after combat in war. He said he really uses it as one of his tools to help people when their body and psyche have been fragmented. It’s literally having something to hold onto and sort of believe in. It helps with their sense of structure and in clearing trauma.


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new & notable

Enhance Your Wellness

From artisan grain-free pasta to super greens multivitamins, discover the latest ways to feel and look great.

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❶ Pure Alchemy

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❹ A Pasta Everyone

❺ Everything Is

Super greens are infused with a full spectrum of vitamins and minerals in Root’d Multivitamin Fizzy Health Drinks (Women’s, Men’s, & Prenatal). When mixed in liquid, the chemistry gives you an absorption boost. Formulated by nutritionists, these handy sticks are packed with probiotics, electrolytes, and essential vitamins and minerals in bioavailable forms. There are no GMOs, added sugar, or synthetic fillers.

Skin Protection Awaken, replenish, and fortify your skin with For the Biome Shield Face Serum. Nature’s strongest CO2-extracted active compounds help defend skin from environmental stress and blue light for a cleaner, smoother complexion. Astaxanthin delivers strong free-radical defense. And wildharvested rosehip seed oil penetrates skin’s deepest layers, accelerating toning, renewal, and hydration.

Meet the newest additions to Once Again’s line of awesome nut butters: Sunflower Hemp Butter and Maple Almond Butter. The first is made with organic hemp oil and organically grown sunflower seeds, roasted and milled for an ultra creamy texture. It’s gluten-free, non-GMO verified, and vegan. The second is a lovely sweet butter featuring dry-roasted, milled almonds, pure maple sugar, and natural vanilla flavor.

Can Enjoy Jovial Foods Cassava Flour Pastas are crafted in Italy by artisan pasta makers using the same family traditions for over a century. Made with cassava flour, a nutty, starchy root vegetable (also called yuca), this line of pastas cook up firm and are free from gluten, grains, the top 8 allergens, legumes, gums, and lectin. It's also Paleo-friendly, kosher, and non-GMO.

Coming Up Rosehips Did you know rosehips are one of nature’s best immunity boosters? They have 25–40 times more vitamin C by weight than citrus fruits. Now you can easily enjoy them with NADI Wild Rosehip juices (Grape, Original, and Pomegranate). Rosehips have a delicate floral taste with a touch of tartness. (Think elderberry, hibiscus, blackberries, blueberries, and plums). The juices have no sugar added and are non-GMO and organic.

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guide to cutting-edge supplements

Beta-Glucans: What You Need to Know

These biologically active compounds have multiple—often profound—health benefits, including immune protection. BY LISA TURNER


Best Food Sources You’ll find naturally occurring beta-glucans in several foods, including grains, mushrooms, and yeast. Barley and oats have the highest beta-glucan levels of cereal grains; other grains, including wheat, rice, and rye, contain lower amounts. Mushrooms—especially reishi, shiitake, maitake, and chaga—are rich in beta-glucans. Other sources include Saccharomyces cerevisiae yeast (nutritional and baker’s yeast) and some types of seaweeds, especially Laminaria sp., a group of brown algae commonly known as kelp. Beta-Glucan Supplements: What to Look for It’s difficult, however, to get beneficial amounts of beta-glucans from food, especially the types known for immune support. To really increase your infection protection, choose a well-formulated supplement. Beta-glucans vary in structure, which impacts their biological activity. In studies, beta 1,3/1,6 glucan products have the most significant immunological benefit and offer the best protection against bacterial and viral infections. And the source is important. Beta 1,3/1,6 glucan derived from S. cerevisiae yeast is the most studied form for immune support, and has been shown to protect against pathogens and significantly reduce infections.

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Beta-Glucans Activate Immune Cells What’s especially important right now—beta-glucans are one of the best-studied immune supplements on the market, and may protect against viral, bacterial, and other infections. They’re thought to work by activating immune cells, enhancing the function of natural killer cells and white blood cells that engulf and consume foreign

invaders, and improving the body’s potential to defend against invading viruses, bacteria, and other pathogens. Beta-glucans are especially important in the management and prevention of respiratory tract infections, and can support the body’s natural immune response in times of stress and increased susceptibility to infection. In a study from the journal Nutrients of moderately to highly stressed participants, those who received either 250 mg or 500 mg of beta-glucans reported fewer upper respiratory tract infection symptoms, better overall health, increased vigor, and decreased tension, fatigue, and confusion.


If you’ve been searching for ways to improve your immunity, you’ve probably heard about beta-glucans, a type of fiber found in the cell walls of foods such as cereal grains, mushrooms, yeast, and seaweed. Dozens of studies suggest that different kinds of beta-glucans can lower cholesterol and triglycerides, decrease blood pressure, reduce inflammation, improve insulin resistance, protect against diabetes, and reduce the risk of cancer.

What Are Alpha-Glucans? In addition to beta-glucans, mushrooms also contain alpha-glucans, which may also improve immunity. In fact, mushroom-derived glucans have been licensed as successful immunemodulating and cancer-preventive drugs in Japan since 1983. One mushroom-derived compound in particular—active hexose correlated compound, or AHCC—is an alphaglucan-rich proprietary extract that has a broad range of effects on the immune system. For the best protection, look for a beta-glucan supplement labeled “beta glucan 1,3/1,6” or “beta 1, 3-D glucan,” or choose AHCC or a beta- glucan-rich mushroom supplement.

Doctor’s Best EpiCor

Immune Health Basics with Wellmune

NOW Extra-Strength Beta-Glucans

Discover Branded Beta-Glucan Ingredients

When you shop for beta-glucan supplements, you’ll notice that some formulas tout a proprietary type of beta-glucans on the label. These are branded, science-backed ingredients that can be found in a variety of products. There are two standouts: EpiCor and Wellmune. Here’s what makes them unique:



Created using a proprietary fermentation process, EpiCor is a whole-food yeast fermentate composed of dozens of compounds and metabolites (including beta-glucans) that work together to strengthen the immune system. Published clinical studies show that EpiCor enhances human immune response in a number of ways, including increasing NK cell activation, boosting B-cell activity, and enhancing secretory IgA, a key antibody in your saliva. Additional research demonstrates that EpiCor helps bolster your immune armor by increasing antioxidant power in as little as two hours. For a complete list of EpiCor research, visit Wellmune WGP is a proprietary extract from baker’s yeast that is rich in immune-supportive beta-glucans. It has been heavily researched and shown to reduce the signs, symptoms, frequency, and duration of upper respiratory infections. In a study from Journal of Dietary Supplements involving marathon runners (who experience increased infections after super-long runs), Wellmune WGP significantly reduced symptoms of upper respiratory tract infection (sore throat, stuffy nose, etc.) among test subjects. Go to to learn more and view research on the remedy.


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holistic strategies to help you feel better

Can Improving Heart Health Reduce COVID Risk? Strengthening your cardiovascular system is never a bad thing, but it may be more important now than ever. BY JEANETTE RYAN, DC, IFMCP


inflammatory reactions. Ultimately, it is the oxidative stress of this cascade that causes hypercoagulation and blood clots. These blood clots then cause damage everywhere there are small capillary beds: in the brain, lungs, kidneys, toes, and even the blood vessels themselves. The blood vessels and the heart have a thin lining of cells, called endothelial cells, that release a clotting factor called Von Willebrand’s Factor (VWF), which has been shown to be wildly elevated in severe COVID-19 cases. Interestingly, people with blood type O have less VWF.

5 Ways to Boost Your Heart Health & Immunity 1. Increase NO: One of the best things

you can do for your immune system is to increase nitric oxide (NO), which helps protect endothelial cells. NO can be increased through specific breathing exercises. These entail nasal breathing only, and humming through the exhale so the front of the face vibrates, and then slowly inhaling through the nose. For more detailed information, see The Oxygen Advantage: The Simple, Scientifically Proven Breathing Techniques for a


Leading physicians and scientists on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic have uncovered a strong link between the virus and cardiovascular disease. This emerging theory explains, in part, why people with pre-existing high blood pressure and diabetes are at greater risk of developing severe complications from COVID-19. It’s thought that the virus enters the body through the respiratory passages and possibly the eyes. Since the virus attacks the ACE2 enzyme receptor, it then sets into motion a cascade of

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❷ Mind Your Minerals: Make sure your

antioxidant enzymes are supplied with the minerals they need—notably zinc, selenium, copper, manganese, and iron. Hemp, pumpkin, sesame, and other seeds contain significant amounts of zinc. Raw cashews do, as well. A cozy pot of lentil soup will also do the trick (just remember to soak the lentils first). And eat two raw Brazil nuts every day if you’re not allergic. That will give you approximately 200 mcg of selenium, which is the recommended daily amount. Copper, manganese, and iron are found in nuts, seeds, legumes, and leafy greens. Or you can try a quality multimineral supplement.

Combat Quarantine Fatigue. Maintaining

your psychological and spiritual well-being throughout this difficult time is a key to going the distance. Quarantine fatigue is real. Nurture your happiness with this free course by Yale University on the Science of Well-Being:

❹ Take NAC. N-acetyl-L-cysteine (NAC) is a precursor to reduced glutathione, a major factor in reducing the vascular damage caused by the virus through oxidative stress. Also, NAC helps clear thick mucus from the lungs.

Quercetin & Zinc

Zinc has been found to inhibit the enzyme that the COVID-19 virus uses to replicate itself. Very little zinc is stored in the body, so we need to consume it at low levels on a regular basis. I usually recommend 15 mg per day. The challenge with zinc is that it is an ion, so it needs help getting inside your cells. The various chelated forms (e.g., picolinate, gluconate, arginate, glycinate) are better absorbed than plain zinc ions. But quercetin can also help. There is a tiny channel in the cell wall, called an ionophore, that transports zinc into the cell. Quercetin a good ionophore for zinc. Depending on your size, you could take up to two 500 mg capsules three times per day with meals. Adjust downwards from there. For example, I’m currently taking one 500 mg capsule twice per day on an empty stomach. Food sources of quercetin include watercress, cilantro, radicchio, asparagus, onions, elderberry, cranberry, blueberry, blackberry, and apples.


I recommend taking 600 mg NAC along with 200–400mg of S-acetyl-L-glutathione or liposomal glutathione. These can be taken together in the morning on an empty stomach.

❺ Try a Pulse Oximeter. When

should you go to the hospital if you are ill? Since only an estimated 30 percent of COVID-19 patients run fevers, one way of knowing is by using a pulse oximeter, a device for your fingertip that tells you the percentage of oxygen in your blood. Generally, a reading below 95 is the time to seek medical attention. This will help reduce the number of people who are waiting until it’s already too late, and instead get you to help with a greater fighting chance.

Eidon Ionic Minerals Multiple Mineral

Life Extension N-AcetylL-Cysteine

Suja Organic Cold-Pressed Sweet Beets


Healthier, Slimmer, Faster, and Fitter You by Patrick McKeown. This exercise fits nicely into a meditation practice, 5–10 minutes morning and night. Beets and beet juice have also been shown to help boost NO levels.

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answers to your health questions

Why Am I Always Tired? A little investigative work can help pinpoint why you’re constantly fatigued—and what you can do about it. BY EMILY KANE, ND, LAC


I feel tired a lot. I just don’t have the energy to accomplish what seems like a normal amount of work, errands, and a little play in my day. What’s wrong with me?

Lack of energy is a very common concern and has many possible origins. Likely it’s a combination of a few different things, so let’s go over the basics to start. It’s important to rule out (test for) anemia and low thyroid function.

Thyroid Another major contributor to low energy is hypothyroidism, or low thyroid function, which has become rampant in the past 20–25 years. Thyroid problems used to be quite rare, but because of the


enormous burden of new chemicals and plastics on the planet, our bodies are constantly working against “foreign” substances in our air, water, and soil. We can, and will, adapt, but evolution is the long game. It’s trickier short-term. The only solution to current levels of pollution is to do your very best with the fundamentals of maintaining good health whenever you can. If your fatigue is linked to low thyroid function, you may be able to turn it

around without medicine. The screening test is TSH—thyroid stimulating hormone, which is made in the brain. A TSH reading over 5 signals that you may not be making enough of the hormone thyroxine. Thyroxine acts like a gas pedal in your body. When you need to rev up, get warmer, get your digestion going, get your heart pumping, the thyroid gland should produce thyroxine. And every cell in the body has receptors for thyroxine.

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Menstruating women who bleed heavily (more than 3–4 super tampons a day for more than 4–5 days a month) may not be replacing red blood cell loss, and therefore can’t deliver oxygen optimally to the brain, heart, and large muscles. Anemia absolutely causes fatigue, and usually a feeling of being cold. An inexpensive blood test (CBC, or complete blood count) can quickly show if anemia is the problem.



What About Coffee?



Coffee is probably the most common substance people turn to when they’re feeling drained. And it’s not the worst thing in the world if used intelligently. It can help your brain and motor reflexes short-term. Some studies have shown that moderate coffee drinking promotes cognitive function and longevity. People can lead healthy, productive lives and be coffee drinkers—but coffee is not the secret sauce! Coffee is a potent vasoconstrictor, which means it causes blood vessels, especially smaller ones, to clamp down and reduce blood flow temporarily. Most migraines are caused by too much blood going to the head, which is why people get bad headaches when they quit coffee. This is one reason why it’s wise not to start. If you have a cup a few times a month at a special café, that’s fine. But for daily consumption, go for hot lemon water in the morning instead. Sometimes the thyroid gland gets most of us are deficient in vitamin D3, clogged up and just can’t pump out vitamin K, and melatonin. Unless enough thyroxine. Sometimes we don’t you drink a lot of fresh orange juice have enough of the building block (iodine) or use a lot of fresh lemon juice, you’re in our diets. Many people with low probably not getting enough vitamin C thyroid function actually have an autoeither. It’s the basic nutrient required immune disease that causes the body to for all tissue repair, and it’s also start attacking the thyroid gland. Work crucial for balancing sympathetic with a healthcare provider and parasympathetic to sort this all out. nervous system did you know ... Beware the medical responses (fight or If you rule out anemia professional who just flight versus calm). and low thyroid, other wants to give you a Lifestyle adjustpotential causes of fatigue prescription (or in the ments are also crucial include low blood pressure case of overactive when fighting fatigue. (POTS), low adrenal thyroid, irradiate and Bodies need to move. function (Addison’s), kill the gland) right off Take a walk. Take the and poor sleep. the bat. Don’t be too stairs. Dance around hasty! Get a second the living room. Just opinion. Drugs and/or do it. And while you’re surgery should be your last resort. moving, stay well-hydrated. Dry tissues are more easily damaged, less resilient, and literally less energetic—less Healthy Energy Boosts oxygenating blood flows through Nutritional supplements—including dry tissues. Start the morning iron, herbal nervines, and digestive with a big glass of water (room enzymes—can be helpful in resolving temperature or warm), and keep fatigue. Because of our indoor lifestyle,

going. Drink water between meals and during exercise. Keep track. Have a few favorite glass or stainless water bottles and fill them daily. I like to fill my water bottles with tap water in the evening before I go to bed, then leave the lid off overnight so the city chlorine can out-gas. Speaking of water, one of my favorite health-promoting, self-care activities is cold water walking. Run cold water into the tub ankle deep while dry-brushing your whole body. Then walk in place in the tub for 60 seconds (you can start with 30 seconds—or if this doesn’t appeal, just rinse with cold water after every shower or bath). Now that I’m brave and have been cold-water walking in the morning for years, I sit down and splash my belly and low back, then kneel and put my forearms in the cold water. Who needs coffee after a cold dip first thing in the morning? Finally, I can’t emphasize enough the importance of making good food choices all the time. In general, you want your diet to promote tissue healing, and not inflammation. The basics of an anti-inflammatory diet are well known—mostly veggies, fish not red meat, good olive oil (raw or gently heated), no deep-fried anything, and whole grains such as rice, quinoa, and barley. Avoid processed foods like the plague (just say no to chips, cookies, and crackers). Snack on nuts, carrot sticks, sliced apples, and celery instead. Choose your food wisely—it can make all the difference.


Now is the time to contact a licensed naturopathic doctor with telemedicine. Find an ND today at find-an-nd/.


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pure ingredients for skin & body

Oils and Serums for Hair Repair

Whether you’re trying to repair damage from coloring your hair at home, looking to mend parched ends, or just want to de-frizz from summer mugginess, there’s an oil or serum for you. BY SHERRIE STRAUSFOGEL


then wash out. Thicker oil may require two shampoos. You can also use just a few drops on wet or dry hair to smooth, tame dry ends, and add shine. Although most hair serums include oils in their formulas, they are usually lighter and coat the hair rather than sinking into the strands. Serums add ingredients that help smooth, protect against humidity, and enhance shine. They work best when you apply them to wet hair prior to styling. Many serums are formulated

to protect hair from sun, pollutants, and heat styling tools. Choose your hair oil or oil-packed serum based on the condition and texture of your hair:


AVOCADO and MORINGA OILS are especially light and ideal for fine hair that can lose volume. Apply them sparingly, focusing on the ends up to the middle portion of your hair, avoiding the scalp so as not to weigh hair down or make it look oily.


ARGAN OIL smooths, removes


BLACK CASTOR OIL increases blood


COCONUT OIL is creamy and


MARULA OIL has a light texture,


JOJOBA and MACADAMIA OILS add hydration and protect hair strands. These oils are ideal for all hair types.

frizz and flyaways, and adds shine to thick, curly, or extra-dry hair.

flow to the scalp to promote faster hair growth and thicker strands.

replenishes moisture while also boosting shine and adding definition to curly hair.

but it’s packed with nourishing vitamins, anti-aging amino acids, and moisturizing fatty acids to restore hair that’s been colored or chemically treated. Photo:

Hair oils are treatments that improve the condition of your hair. Their molecules absorb into the hair and scalp, moisturizing with essential fatty acids that help prevent split ends and breakage. If your hair is damaged or dry, coat your hair with oil from scalp to ends, leave on for at least 20 minutes,

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❹ ❺

❸ Manage your messy mane with

❶ Get back to the roots of healthy hair

with Shea Terra Egyptian Black Castor Hair Oil. This pure, cold-pressed, syrupy oil helps soothe the scalp, strengthen hair, and increase hair growth. It can be used as a deep conditioning or a leave-in treatment. Although it may require a few shampoos, slather the oil all over your scalp, hair, and even eyebrows to promote faster growth and thicker strands.


❷ Swap frizz for shine with John Masters Organics 100% Argan Oil. This pure, organic, lightweight oil hydrates, repairs split ends, and tames frizz. Argan oil is packed with antioxidant vitamin E and omega-6 fatty acids. Smooth one or two drops of this concentrated oil from roots to ends. Mix a few drops with leave-in conditioner or hair mask. Use it on your face and body, too, as it is gentle on sensitive skin.

Kinky-Curly Perfectly Polished Nourishing Hair Oil. This rich blend of argan, apricot kernel, Abyssinian seed, and wheat germ oils hydrates, protects, and boosts glossiness. Use it for a hot oil treatment, pre-shampoo, scalp massage, and as a finishing aid on dry hair.

❹ Heal your hair with Giovanni 2Chic Repairing Super Potion Hair Oil Serum. Damaged or overprocessed hair will soak up this finishing serum, which strengthens and tames hair with blackberry extract and coconut oil. Say goodbye to frizz and flyaways and hello to shine. Argan and macadamia oils, shea butter, and keratin help prevent breakage and split ends. Fortify curly hair with Ouidad Bye-Bye Breakage Strengthening + Thickening Serum. This treatment rebalances the scalp’s pH to help promote hair growth. The light formula is infused with jojoba oil, niacinamide, hyaluronic acid, amino acid-rich plant collagen, and Irish moss to provide essential nutrients to the scalp to help reduce breakage, encourage healthier hair growth, and reduce excessive shedding. Rose hip, bamboo shoot extract, burdock, and chamomile promote volume and thickness. AUGUST 2020

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KIDS’ LUNCHES Liven up your midday meal with these delicious, healthy, and kid-friendly recipes.



t’s not always easy to come up with creative lunch ideas for kids. Too often, we fall back on the time-honored PB&J or mystery-meat nuggets. So if you’re looking to spice up your children’s noontime nosh, check out this selection of good—and good-for-you—recipes. Whether they’re headed back to school or just into the next room, your kids will thank you!

Photoraphy: Pornchai Mittongtare | Styling: Robin Turk | Food Stylist: Claire Stancer


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Apple, Oat, and Yellow Squash Pancakes Makes 24 pancakes For kids who like to eat breakfast all day, look no further than these silver dollarsized morsels. Serve these high-fiber pancakes with a tub of applesauce or a bit of maple syrup for dipping. Gluten-free, Makes 2 dozen.

Macaroni Pizza Makes 16 mini pizzas Muffin tins make the ideal container for a pizza-flavored mac and cheese. Pasta is packed with protein already, but when you add in cottage cheese, mozzarella, and eggs, you’ve got a protein-rich lunch that will get your kids through the afternoon.

1½ cups gluten-free oat flour 1 cup rolled gluten-free oats 2 tsp. baking powder ½ tsp. cinnamon 1 tsp. vanilla 4 eggs, whisked 1 cup milk of your choice 1 large apple, grated (don’t peel) 1 small yellow summer squash, grated Cooking oil for the pan

1. Preheat non-stick skillet or griddle to medium-high heat. Mix dry ingredients in bowl. Add vanilla, eggs, and milk. Stir well. 2. Add apple and squash, and stir into batter and until well combined. 3. Oil pan, and drop 2 Tbs. of batter on the hot skillet for each pancake. When edges are cooked and the center bubbles, flip pancake, and cook until done. Repeat with remaining batter. Pancake may be stored in refrigerator up to 5 days. Per serving: 70 cal; 3g prot; 2g total fat (0.5 sat fat); 10g carb; 30mg chol; 55mg sod; 1g fiber; 2g sugar

1½ cups small macaroni (any kind will do, wheat, lentil, rice, or bean) 1 cup marinara sauce 2 cups grated mozzarella, divided 1½ cups cottage cheese 4 eggs 4 Tbs. grated Parmesan cheese Hefty pinch of salt and pepper 16 pepperoni or salami rounds 1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Cook pasta according to package directions until al dente. Drain, place in a bowl, and stir in marinara sauce. Let cool 10 minutes. 2. Stir in 1½ cup grated mozzarella. Blend cottage cheese, eggs, Parmesan, salt, and pepper in blender or food processor until smooth 3. Line cups of two 8-cup muffin pans with two paper liners each. Place pepperoni or salami in the bottom of each liner. Fill cups half full of macaroni mixture. Carefully pour cottage cheese and eggs over macaroni to fill in gaps. Top with the remaining mozzarella cheese. 4. Bake 20 minutes, until egg is set and tops are puffed and golden brown. Mini pizzas will keep in refrigerator up to 5 days. Per serving: 140 cal; 8g prot; 5g total fat (2 sat fat); 14g carb; 50mg chol; 320mg sod; 0g fiber; 5g sugar


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Chicken and Edamame Onigiri Makes 12 These Japanese rice snacks are perfect for the adventurous eater in your home. Traditional recipes call for rolling the balls or forming a flat cake in a triangle shape, then adding a filling to the center of the rice cake. This recipe simplifies the process by mixing up the filling with the rice. 1 cup short grain rice 1 cup cooked chicken 1 cup shelled frozen edamame 4 green onions, trimmed of upper green stalks 2 Tbs. cooking oil Japanese rice seasoning (sesame, salt and seaweed blend) Soy sauce for serving

1. Cook rice according to package directions. Transfer to bowl. Place chicken, edamame, and onions in food processor, and pulse until finely minced. 2. Heat skillet to medium high, add oil. Sauté chicken-edamame mixture 5–8 minutes, until onions are soft. Stir chicken mixture into rice. 3. Wet your hands with water, and form mixture into 12 tightly packed triangle-shaped rice cakes. Roll half in rice seasoning, and place in a flat container. (Alternately, pack rice with a small round ice cream scoop, place in flat container, and sprinkle tops with the rice seasoning.) Refrigerate until ready to eat or pack. Serve with soy sauce for dipping. Per serving: 110 cal; 6g prot; 3.5g total fat (0 sat fat); 14g carb; 10mg chol; 30mg sod; 1g fiber; 1g sugar

Tutti-Frutti Veggie Dippy Serves 8 Kids love anything that is good for dipping. This whipped-cream cheese blend of strawberries, pineapple, cucumber, and spinach is perfect for dipping sugar snap peas, celery, grapes, carrots, and crackers. 8 oz. whipped cream cheese 2 Tbs. pineapple juice, reserved from the canned pineapple ½ cup each finely diced strawberries, cucumber, canned pineapple ½ cup minced baby spinach 1. Gently fold all ingredients into cream cheese. Spoon into serving container and serve with vegetables, fruit, and crackers. Or use it as a sandwich filling (see sidebar) Per serving: 120 cal; 2g prot; 10g total fat (6 sat fat); 6g carb; 30mg chol; 90mg sod; 0g fiber; 4g sugar


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Bento Box Ideas Japanese-style bento lunchbox containers are all the rage. They’re perfect for whatever type of eater you have. Say the kid who wants his or her food in separate containers (let’s call them the food no-touchers) or the more adventurous ones who like to try lots of new foods at the same time. Here are a few ideas to inspire. The Lunchtime Dragon Slayer:

The Veg-Head:

World Traveler:

Whole grain tortilla chips or tiny street taco tortillas, black beans, shredded lettuce, cheese, and salsa.

Hummus, pretzels, and dehydrated sugar snap pea snacks.

Asian dumplings, Onigiri (see recipe), and snow peas with soy sauce and sweet red chili sauce for dipping.

The Traditionalist: Cut 2

Southern Gourmet:

pieces of white whole-wheat bread into rounds, spread with Tutti-Frutti Veggie Dippy (see recipe), and add tops for tasty tea sandwiches.

Cut whole wheat waffles into quarters and spread with maple butter (soft butter sweetened with a little maple syrup). Add shredded chicken and lettuce to make a chicken waffle sandwich.

Mama Mia:

Macaroni Pizza (see recipe) and cocktail stirrer-skewered pearl mozzarella balls with cherry tomatoes and mozzarella sticks.


Use a cocktail stirrer or Popsicle stick as a skewer (bamboo skewers and long toothpicks are frowned upon at school) and fill with squares of whole grain bread, turkey, pickles, cherry tomatoes, and cheese.

Loco for Tacos:


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Get the Ho Hum Out of School Lunches We checked in with Rhian Allen, CEO/Founder of The Healthy Mommy, a healthy living program designed to show busy moms that eating healthy can be easy and inexpensive. As a busy mom of two, she shares her school lunch ideas and her thoughts on why what you put in that lunchbox is important to your child’s nutrition. “A school lunchbox that is packed with snacks, lunch, and an after-school nutrient boost can potentially make up to 30–50 percent of your child’s daily food intake, so we want to make them count,” she says. MEAL PLAN FOR HEALTHY LUNCHES Allen suggests making lunchbox planning a part of your weekly meal planning. And if you’ve made something for dinner that your kids love, consider packing it in their lunch. “Make a little extra of certain meals you know your kids love, and then use it as part of their lunch that week.” Also, ask your kids what they want in their lunch and for snacks. Within reason work with them on the purchasing and preparation. “Getting your kids to help put it all together is not just a helpful timesaver. If they’re involved, they will get excited about eating their lunch,” Allen says. “Your kids may also surprise you. They may prefer sandwiches over that stir fry or salad you were planning to pack.”

FUN FINGER FOODS Kids love anything they can eat with their hands. Forgo the forks and spoons for small edibles that give kids the look and feel of a special treat. Allen’s kids go for Lemon Coconut Bliss Balls, a healthy concoction of almonds, coconut, and lemon rolled into bite-sized morsels. On the savory side, cheesy broccoli bites are a great way for your kids to get some vegetables and protein in their lunch (see the recipe below). Lastly, don’t forget to pack water along with other healthy beverages. “If your kids don’t like to drink water, try adding berries or other fruit in it to infuse it with added flavor and natural sweetness,” Allen says.

Rhian Allen is the founder of Healthy Mommy, a program to educate moms about how they can make small changes to their life to become healthier and make healthy choices for a healthy life for themselves and their family. For more information, visit

Cheesy Broccoli Bites Makes 16 bites 2 cups broccoli florets 2 free-range eggs ½ cup whole-wheat breadcrumbs ½ cup grated Parmesan 2 Tbs. coconut oil 1. Steam broccoli on stovetop or in microwave 3 minutes, until bright green. Allow to cool slightly. 2. In food processor, process steamed broccoli into fine crumbs. Tip broccoli crumbs into medium bowl with eggs, breadcrumbs, and Parmesan, and stir well. 3. Using spoon, form mixture into 16 balls. Heat half of oil in frying pan over medium heat. Add half of bites to pan, and press tops gently to flatten slightly. Cook 2–3 minutes per side until golden. Move to paper towel and repeat with remaining oil and bites. Store leftovers in airtight container in fridge for up to 3 days. Illustration:

Per serving: 45 cal; 2g prot; 3g total fat (2 sat fat); 3g carb; 25mg chol; 60mg sod; 0g fiber; 0g sugar


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7Immune Easy

Ways to

Make Your




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ou’ll likely always remember 2020 as the year the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic led to a societal focus on external hygiene—including social distancing and frequent hand washing—to help prevent spread of the illness. But have you paid as much attention to internal hygiene, practices that help optimize your immune system to ward off disease on its own? It’s true that COVID-19 is a new virus that no one, up until recently, had been exposed to. However, we have to face the fact that we can’t live in a world free of cold and flu viruses, other foreign invaders, toxins, and stressors. No matter what we want to defend ourselves against, building up our immune systems is the key to fighting off many different challenges. Naturopathic physicians and other holistic-oriented practitioners focus on back-to-basics approaches—simple things that can make a big difference— to increase resistance. The practices that follow aren’t complicated: They promote health, which in turn supports the body’s natural ability to heal and protect itself.


Load up on vegetables

The more vegetables—and more varieties of vegetables—you eat, the better it is for your immune system and your health in general. Polyphenols, naturally occurring compounds in vegetables and fruits, help support beneficial gut bacteria while inhibiting harmful bacteria. This sets up an internal environment that helps our immune system function more efficiently. Other veggie nutrients, such as beta-carotene and vitamin C, help improve our immune defenses in other ways. For example, flavonoids, colorful polyphenols found in vegetables, fruits, and herbs, upregulate the body’s antiviral defenses while also downregulating excessive inflammation and immune overactivity, says Lise Alschuler, ND, of the Center for Integrative Medicine at the University of Arizona. AUGUST 2020

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Avoid eating sugary foods

Consuming sugar suppresses the immune system by destroying the germ-killing ability of white blood cells for up to five hours after ingestion. It also interferes with transport of vitamin C, one of the most important nutrients

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for healthy immune function. Plus, sugar is a source of empty calories—it doesn’t provide any nutrients to help the body fight off illness.


Stay hydrated

Drinking enough water is just as important for immunity as getting enough sleep. Water is needed to keep lymph fluid, a key component of healthy immune function, flowing smoothly. The mucous membranes that line our nasal passages, lungs, and throat, which are on the front lines of the body’s defenses, cannot do their job well when a person is dehydrated. Water is also needed to allow the kidneys to flush out toxins and the digestive tract to remove waste from the body. So, drink more water!


Get some sleep

Lack of sleep depresses immunity by preventing the body from producing more cytokines to fight infection. Sleep deprivation can make you more susceptible to disease— including new and advanced respiratory diseases—and also increase the time it takes to recover from illness. Adequate sleep— generally considered to be between seven and nine hours a night—plays an integral role in immune function because it positively

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As a key strategy to help our immune defenses, we should shoot for eating 7–10 servings of vegetables, fruits, and herbs per day. According to researcher and educator Peter D’Adamo, ND, vegetables such as shallots, garlic, onions, and leeks deserve special mention: they contain substances called lectins that almost act as targeted antibodies against viral infections.

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Fortify Your Body with Supportive Supplements

Photo: (this page and previous spread)

No matter how healthy our diets are, many of us still have trouble getting adequate—let alone optimal—amounts of the nutrients necessary to build and support healthy immune systems. Supplements can help provide that extra boost. For additional support, consider taking the following nutrients, either individually or in combination formulas.

Vitamin D—This fat-soluble nutrient plays a powerful role in immune health. It is a key factor linking innate and adaptive immunity; it enhances the pathogen-fighting effects of white blood cells; and it decreases inflammation, which helps promote appropriate immune response. Low vitamin D levels are associated with an increased risk of upper respiratory tract infections, including influenza. According to a 2019 review of randomized control studies of 11,321 people, supplementing with vitamin D significantly decreases the risk of respiratory infections in people deficient in this vitamin, and even lowers infection risk in those with adequate vitamin D levels. The body makes vitamin D when we are exposed to UV rays from sunlight. If you don’t get much exposure to the sun—or if you want extra assurance—consider supplements of vitamin D3. A dosage between 1,000 IU and 4,000 IU daily is sufficient for most people. But individuals with serious deficiencies may need more. Zinc—This trace mineral is needed for immune cell development and communication. A deficiency in this nutrient affects your immune system’s ability to function properly, resulting in an increased risk of infection and disease.

Oral zinc supplementation reduces the incidence rate of acute respiratory infections by 35 percent, shortens the duration of flu-like symptoms by approximately two days, and improves the rate of recovery. Foods high in zinc include lamb, beef, dark-meat chicken, pork, nuts, seeds such as pumpkin and hemp seeds, and mushrooms. Typical supplemental dosages range from 15–50 mg daily. Vitamin C—A powerful antioxidant and cofactor for enzymatic processes that are crucial for healthy immunity, vitamin C is short-lived in the body, and prolonged infection or stress depletes it faster. Supplementing with vitamin C has been shown to reduce the duration and severity of upper respiratory infections, including the common cold. A large review of 29 studies of more than 11,000 people demonstrated that regularly supplementing with vitamin C at an average dose of 1,000– 2,000 mg per day reduces the duration of colds by 8 percent in adults, by 14 percent in children, and by up to 50 percent in individuals under high physical stress, including soldiers and marathon runners. Additionally, high-dose intravenous vitamin C treatment has been shown to significantly improve symptoms in people with severe infection, including

sepsis and acute respiratory distress syndrome resulting from viral infections. Foods rich in vitamin C include broccoli, cauliflower, kiwi, lemons, limes, orange juice, kale, papaya, pepper (red, green, or yellow), sweet potato, strawberries, and tomatoes. Many people take supplements of 500–2,000 mg per day, often in divided doses. Aloe Juice—There’s a whole other side to aloe you may not know about. For example, did you know aloe juice is a potent immune booster, among other things? A clinical study on Lily of the Desert products with Aloesorb showed a 16 percent increase in white blood cell counts over a placebo group. Increasing the amount of white blood cells helps to further support a healthy immune system. Follow label instructions for dosage. Combination Formulas— These generally contain some or all of the above nutrients plus herbs such as olive leaf extract, elderberry, echinacea, and medicinal mushrooms. See product examples to the right. Note: Those with autoimmune conditions or digestive disorders may experience uncomfortable symptoms from multi-herb blends. If you have this problem, try a nutrient-based product such as Carlson ACES + Zn.

Carlson ACES+Zn

Lily of the Desert Aloe Vera Juice

Natural Factors Anti-V Formula

Nature’s Plus Source of Life Immune Booster

Sambucol Black Elderberry Capsules


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impacts T cell function (an important component of immune response). As a key strategy to boost immunity, make it a priority to get regular, sufficient sleep.


Move your body

If the flow of lymph becomes impaired from lack of movement, this key part of our immune surveillance and defenses can become compromised.

DID INDUSTRIAL FOOD SET US UP FOR COVID-19? The 2020 coronavirus pandemic should bring global attention to the grave risks inherent in our modern food system, says Kristin Lawless, author of Formerly Known as Food: How the Industrial Food System is Changing Our Minds, Bodies, and Culture. First, our industrial food system is decimating the environment. Second, our nutrient-depleted and chemically saturated processed-food supply is changing our bodies from the inside out, Lawless wrote in an April 2020 article for the Organic Consumers Association. Industrial farming has depleted our soil of nutrients. Without healthy soil, we can’t have nutritious food to support healthy immune systems. There also is emerging research that exposure to environmental chemicals such as pesticides, BPA, and dioxins—which are used in the growing of food ingredients and the packaging of food products—impair immune function and leave people more vulnerable to infectious diseases. People who suffer from a chronic disease such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, stroke, kidney disease, and various cancers, are particularly at risk. Preliminary findings show that metabolic dysfunction, which occurs with any of these diseases, can cause devastating complications from COVID-19. According to Lawless, metabolic dysfunction has one primary source: our highly processed, sugar-laden, nutrient-poor food supply.

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Reduce stress

When we are stressed, our immune system’s ability to fight off foreign invaders is impaired, making us more susceptible to infections and illness. That’s why it’s imperative that we find ways to lessen our stress load. Whatever engages us fully and takes us out of our head for a while counts as relaxation. For some, that might be exercise. For others, that could be meditation, reading, listening to music, talking to friends, engaging in an absorbing hobby, cooking, walking, or doing yoga or tai chi. Whatever works for you should be an important part of your immune-boosting program.


Harness the healing power of nature

There is a strong connection between exposure to nature and immunological health, according to Kurt Beil, ND, L Ac, MPH, vice president of the New York Association of Naturopathic Physicians. Being in nature promotes the same stress-reducing, health-enhancing effect as meditating, says Beil. His advice is to get outside, away from technology and the news, and walk in a park, nature preserve, or around the block. Or forest bathe—go into the forest and be still—if you can. There are phytoncides, germrepelling and immune-boosting chemicals, that come from natural substances such as evergreen trees. If you’re stuck inside, bring nature indoors by having plants as well as pictures, calendars, and screen savers that have nature scenes in your home. These reminders of nature also offer positive health effects, says Beil.


Moderate physical activity—even something as simple as taking a walk— boosts health and immunity in numerous ways. It improves the flow of lymph in our lymphatic system, which is the circulatory system of our immunity. Proper lymph flow transports immune cells around the body, where they patrol for foreign invaders; then, immune cells come together in hubs of immune activity called lymph nodes to fight infection.

• AUGUST 2020 6/25/20 6:05 PM



ChildLife Essentials® offers a variety of supplements developed by a pediatrician and formulated specifically for use by infants and children beginning at age six months. All ChildLife® products are made from natural ingredients, are gluten-free, and do not contain artificial colors, flavors, or sweeteners. To support your children’s daily health, try our daily maintenance recommendations: ChildLife® Multi Vitamin (liquid or non-gummy gummiesTM) Liquid Vitamin C Pure DHA Vitamin D3 The combination of these vitamins will support your child’s brain, bone, and immune health for life.*

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*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.


6/15/20 3:16 PM



answers to your food questions

MCT Oil vs. Coconut Oil: What’s the Difference?

Both have therapeutic health effects, but they aren’t the same. BY MELISSA DIANE SMITH


MCT oil and coconut oil seem alike in my mind. I’m not sure how they differ and which one to use. Do they have the same benefits, and can they be used interchangeably?

of MCTs that encourage the body to burn fat and provide quick energy. MCTs, on the other hand, don’t require the enzymes or bile acids for digestion and absorption that long-chain fatty acids require. This allows MCTs to go straight to your liver where they are either used for immediate energy or turned into ketones, compounds produced when your liver breaks down a lot of fat. MCT oil contains 100 percent MCTs, compared with about 50 percent in coconut oil. MCT oil is made by refining coconut oil or palm oil to remove other compounds and to concentrate the MCTs naturally found in the oils. The Benefits and Uses of MCT Oil Research suggests that MCT oil may help boost weight loss, metabolic functioning, and energy production more than other oils. As mentioned, your


No, definitely not. While both can be therapeutic for certain conditions, there are key differences between MCT and coconuts oils, and each has unique benefits and uses. It’s important to understand the pros and cons of each to determine which oil is more appropriate for you—or whether you want to use them both. Coconut oil is a historically used fat in many tropical areas of the world, and it has become popular among many health-oriented shoppers in recent years. It is considered the richest food source of medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs), also called

medium-chain fatty acids, which are primarily capric, caprylic, and lauric acids. It also contains some long-chain fatty acids, which aren’t as easy for the body to digest. The fact that coconut oil is listed as a rich source of MCTs should have an asterisk next to it, though. The highest percentage of fatty acids in coconut oil is from lauric acid. Even though lauric acid is considered a medium-chain fatty acid by chemists, it behaves more like a long-chain fatty acid in terms of digestion and absorption. For this reason, many experts suggest that coconut oil should not be considered an MCT-rich oil. Lauric acid has notable antimicrobial effects, but it doesn’t have the easy-to-digest characteristics


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body turns MCTs into alternative forms of energy called ketones, which provide your brain with energy, increase your metabolic rate, and burn excess fat. Mark Hyman, MD, author of Eat Fat, Get Thin, calls MCT oil “the secret fat that makes you thin.” He calls MCT oil a super fuel for your cells that increases mental clarity and boosts fat-burning. MCTs can increase the number of calories your body burns compared with longer-chain fatty acids‚ and replacing other dietary fats with MCT oil can produce weight loss. One study found that people saw more weight loss and decreased body fat from consuming MCT oil rather than olive oil. Other studies suggest that MCT oil may help you exercise longer and improve your stamina. Because of the rapid and simple digestion of MCTs, MCT oil also may help people who have malabsorption issues. Some holistic-oriented medical practitioners use MCTs as nutritional therapy for reducing intestinal irritation in patients with irritable bowel disease, short bowel syndrome, or celiac disease, or after gastrointestinal surgery. The Benefits and Uses of Coconut Oil Decades ago, coconut oil was avoided because it is a saturated fat that people in the Western world incorrectly associated with heart disease. History shows that coconut oil doesn’t appear to increase cardiovascular disease, and some clinical research also supports this. In parts of the world, such as the

South Pacific islands and Papua New Guinea, where coconuts are a dietary staple, people have thrived eating coconut oil for generations and have very low rates of heart disease. Lauric acid makes up about half of the fatty acids in coconut oil. When your body digests lauric acid, it forms a substance called monolaurin. Both lauric acid and monolaurin may kill harmful pathogens, such as bacteria, viruses, and fungi. Test-tube studies show that these substances help wipe out Staphylococcus aureus, which causes staph infections, and the yeast Candida albicans, a common source of yeast infections in humans. Research also shows that lauric acid has potent inhibitory effects against Clostridium difficile, often abbreviated C. diff, a bacteria that affects the intestines and is resistant to many antibiotics. Monolaurin and lauric acid also have the physiochemical property of being able to destroy the membrane of lipidcoated viruses, such as the virus that causes COVID-19. Clinical trials using coconut oil on COVID-19 patients in hospitals in the Philippines are underway as of this writing. Unlike MCT oil, which should not be used in cooking, coconut oil has a high smoke point, meaning it stands up well to heat and is good for stir-frying and pan-frying. Coconut oil also is an excellent substitute for butter in baking. Coconut oil can be used topically to improve the health and appearance of skin and hair. Research shows that

when coconut oil is applied to skin, it can improve the moisture content and reduce the symptoms of eczema. When applied to hair, coconut oil may soften texture, protect against damage, and act as a weak sunscreen, blocking about 20 percent of the sun’s UV rays. Which Is Best? Which of these oils is best for you to use depends on the condition of your health and your personal goals. If you want to lose weight, especially if you’re following a keto-type diet, supplementing with MCT oil can ensure you’re getting enough fat to stay in ketosis—the state in which your body burns fat, rather than carbs, for fuel. But even if you’re on a different type of eating plan, MCT oil can help you feel fuller, longer; help you feel more mentally alert; and might even improve endurance during exercise. If you have a digestive disorder or difficulty digesting and absorbing fat—which is often characterized by diarrhea, greasy stools, foul-smelling stools, bloating, and gas—consider supplementing with MCT oil to provide an easy-to-digest source of fat that might help reduce irritation in your intestines. On the other hand, coconut oil is the one to choose if you’re looking for a versatile cooking oil that can also be used therapeutically on the skin and hair. It is an all-star in these areas. It’s also possible that because of its high lauric acid content, consuming raw coconut oil is potentially beneficial for protecting against—or combating—infections




A flavorless liquid nutritional supplement derived from coconut or palm oil refined to isolate the MCTs

A food-based oil that is solid at room temperature and tastes like coconut

100 percent MCTs

Slightly more than 50 percent MCTs, plus some long- and short-chain fatty acids

Easy-to-absorb source of fats used to help with weight loss and energy

Good cooking oil and therapeutic skin and hair treatment

Take by the spoonful, or add raw to smoothies, salad dressings, sauces, coffee, or tea

Use in cooking or baking, apply topically to skin and hair, or heat to liquefy and take by the spoonful or add to coffee or tea


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Dr. Bronner’s Regenerative Organic Coconut Oil

Ellyndale Organics Coconut Infusions

Garden of Life Dr. Formulated MCT Oil

product. Some people who experience digestive trouble from MCT oil may react to the proprietary blend of MCTs or to the solvents used in the processing that may not be in another brand. Popular brands include Nutiva 100% Organic Coconut MCT Oil and MCT powders; Bulletproof Brain Octane Oil; and hexane-free Garden of Life Dr. Formulated 100% Organic Coconut MCT Oil. If you don’t like the taste of one brand of coconut oil, try another. There can be differences in flavor depending on where the product is sourced and how it is processed. Common brands include Jarrow Formulas Extra Virgin,

Nutiva Organic MCT Powder

Cold Pressed Organic Coconut Oil; Viva Naturals Extra Virgin Organic Coconut Oil; Dr. Bronner’s Regenerative Organic Coconut Oil; and Nature’s Way Extra Virgin, Unrefined Coconut Oil. Finally, whether you decide to use MCT oil, coconut oil, or both in your diet, understand that MCT oil supplies no essential fatty acids (EFAs) and coconut oil supplies a negligible amount. As the name implies, EFAs are essential for our health and well-being. To avoid becoming deficient in EFAs, eat plenty of cold-water fish, grass-fed beef, omega-3-enriched eggs, hemp seeds, and flaxseeds.


caused by numerous pathogenic bugs, including Candida albicans, bacteria, and viruses. For the best health benefits and the most nutrients, opt for organic, unrefined virgin coconut oil. Regardless of which one you choose, be aware that taking too much MCT oil or coconut oil can lead to stomach discomfort, cramping, diarrhea, and bloating. So, it’s a good idea to start small (say, ½ Tbs. per day), see how your body reacts, and increase as tolerated to a maximum dose of 3–4 Tbs per day. If you experience digestive distress from supplementing with MCT oil, consider trying another brand of the

Bulletproof Brain Octane Oil


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5/26/20 5:05 PM



recipe makeovers full of modern flavor

Cooking with Whole Fish

Up your grilling game this summer with this heart-healthy recipe. BY JONNY BOWDEN, PHD, CNS, AND JEANNETTE BESSINGER, CHHC

Notes from the Clean Food Coach:

Tips for choosing a good grilling fish:

* Choose a mild fish and make

sure it’s ultra-fresh. It should smell clean, not at all fishy, and the eyes should be clear, not heavily clouded over. Plan to buy it (or catch it) the same day you cook it.

* Ask if the fish seller has any

local catch in the back. Often these are the best fish, but they aren’t on display because people generally ask for the more expensive, imported choices.

* To support more even grilling,

choose a few smaller fish (2–2.5 pounds, at least 2 inches thick) rather than one large one.

* Unless you know how to do it


You can use any uncooked fins, tails, heads, and/or bones (cooked or uncooked) or seafood shells to make fragrant fish broth for excellent fish soups and stews. The easiest method is to place everything in your slow cooker, generously cover with cold water, bring to a boil on the high setting, then reduce to low without opening the cover and cook 8 hours to overnight. Strain out all solid matter and refrigerate or freeze the broth for future use.

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Years ago, when I was struggling to come up with my own set of ethics when it came to eating animals, I came across this passage: “If you’re used to preparing fish that’s already been filleted, I highly recommend grilling a whole fish at least once. It will give you an immediate sense of your food’s animal origins, and the flavors and eating experience are somehow elevated. I can’t explain it, but you’ll know what I mean when you try it.” That passage was wise and prophetic. It addressed the very nature of our relationship with the things that we eat. It suggested that by being more in touch with the source of our food, we could deepen our relationship with that food, enrich our experience of eating it, and perhaps even make more conscious choices about what exactly to include and exclude from our diets. It might not surprise you to learn that this passage was written by Chef Jeannette Bessinger. And what she says is true. The process of grilling the whole fish does somehow enhance the experience. Just give it a try, and you’ll see.


yourself, ask that your fish be gutted and scaled for you, with the head and tail left intact.


i t! ke

Whole Grilled Fish Serves 6 You can use almost any fish you like, but red snapper works particularly well. See “Notes from the Clean-Food Coach” for more about how to choose and use your fish. 3 2-lb. whole fish, at least 2 inches thick in the middle, gutted and scaled Heat-stable vegetable oil, neutral flavor 3 tsp. sea salt 1½ tsp. cracked black pepper 6 cloves garlic or small shallots, smashed 1½ small lemons, cut into 9 wedges Soaked toothpicks or small grill skewers Chopped fresh herbs and additional lemon wedges, optional for garnish 1. Scrub grill grate clean to help prevent sticking, and preheat grill to medium high. If fish still has fins, remove with a sharp knife and set aside to make fish broth, or discard. 2. Make a series of 3–4 diagonal slits across fleshy part of each side of fish between tail and head. Cuts should be deep (to the bone) to aid in more even cooking.

Featured Ingredient:




Given how confusing and contradictory health advice from the “experts” often is, it’s refreshing to find a principle upon which absolutely everyone agrees: Eat fish! Fish is a high-protein, low-calorie food that provides a whole range of health benefits, from the heart to the brain. Fish high in omega-3s and low in contaminants include wild

3. Lightly oil entire fish, including inside the cuts and in the belly cavity. Coat each fish with 1 teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon pepper (or to taste), concentrating on cuts and cavities. Insert 2 garlic cloves or shallots deep into the belly cavities of each fish. 4. Squeeze lemon wedges into belly cavities, and line them up along the opening, skin sides out, about 3 per fish, to plug the cavity opening. Use soaked barbecue skewers or toothpicks to “pin” opening flaps together to keep pungents and lemon securely inside. 5. Reduce grill temp to medium, and oil grate. Generously recoat fish with oil and place on grill, belly side toward you, leaving enough room behind it to roll over. Cover grill, and cook, undisturbed, about 10 minutes (if fish is 2 inches thick in the middle). 6. Gently roll fish backward with spatula to flip, close grill, and cook 10 minutes more, until flesh flakes easily. 7. Use spatula to carefully work fish skin away from grill, and lift whole fish onto plate. Garnish with fresh herbs, if using, and generous lemon wedges to squeeze over all just before serving. Be mindful of small bones when enjoying. Per serving: 510 cal; 94g prot; 11g total fat (2g sat fat); 3g carb; 170mg chol; 1450mg sod; 1g fiber; 1g sugar

salmon from Alaska (fresh, frozen, and canned), Atlantic mackerel and herring, sardines, sablefish, anchovies, and farmed oysters. White-fleshed fish, on the other hand, is loaded with vitamins and minerals while being incredibly low in calories, but it rarely contains a significant amount of omega 3s. Almost all fish, however—with the possible exception of some farmed salmon—are naturally low in pro-inflammatory omega-6s, and that’s a very good thing. The American Heart Association recommends that we eat at least two

fish meals a week. This recommendation is also included in the USDA’s dietary guidelines. The nutrients found in seafood help reduce risk of death by heart attack and prevent a host of chronic health problems and terminal illnesses. Seafood cuts the risk for heart disease, cancer, Alzheimer’s, stroke, diabetes, and inflammatory diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, all of which has been documented in dozens of published studies. Understand that when I’m waxing on and on about the virtues of fish, I’m not talking about “mystery fish nuggets deep fried in recycled vegetable oil” or some similar Frankenfood from the local fast-food emporium. I’m talking the real deal. Research shows that more nutrients are retained in fish that is baked or broiled, rather than processed and/or fried. (But you knew that, didn’t you?) And to protect against viral and germ contamination, handle uncooked seafood with care, as you would any meat or poultry. AUGUST 2020

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foods & meals that heal

Get More Vitamin C

Here are 8 great sources of this key nutrient that aren’t oranges. BY LISA TURNER

Glowing skin. The role of vitamin C in collagen production, plus its powerful antioxidant benefits, makes it essential for healthy, youthful skin. Studies show that vitamin C helps diminish the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, protects skin from free-radical damage, and promotes faster wound healing. Travel insurance. Your immune system can use some insurance before a summer vacation. Vitamin C supports several components of the immune system, and studies link deficiencies with impaired immunity and higher susceptibility to infections. Plus, if you do get sick on your summer trip, vitamin C can ease symptoms and shorten the duration of colds and respiratory tract infections. A healthy heart. Summer heat, humidity, and exercise put stress on your heart—keep yours strong with vitamin C. It’s linked with healthy cholesterol levels and improved blood vessel health, and many studies show that a high intake of vitamin C can reduce the risk of—and death from—heart disease. Eye protection. Vitamin C supports the health of blood vessels in the eye and protects against UV damage—especially important when you’re spending more time in the sun. Additionally, studies suggest that vitamin C lowers the risk of developing cataracts and, when taken with other essential nutrients, slows the progression of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and loss of visual acuity. Sounds pretty important, right? Lucky for us, some of summer’s freshest foods are packed with this powerful nutrient. Here are eight of the best (all DVs are based on January 2020 updated recommendations of 90mg for adults):


Recipe Tips: Sprinkle cold papaya wedges with chili powder and fresh lime juice; toss papaya cubes with blackberries, baby arugula, olive oil, and crumbled feta cheese; purée papaya with pineapple cubes and coconut milk for a tropical smoothie.


Yellow peppers * One cup, chopped = 274 mg * DV: 304 percent

Recipe Tips: Sauté yellow peppers, leeks, and garlic, then purée with fresh basil for a colorful alternative to tomato sauce; grill halved yellow peppers then stuff with quinoa, black beans, chopped tomatoes, and avocado cubes; purée yellow peppers, yellow tomatoes, green onions, cucumber, and cilantro into a fresh, bright gazpacho.


Broccoli * One cup, cooked = 101mg * DV: 112 percent

Recipe Tips: Cut broccoli into thin spears, brush with olive oil, sprinkle with garlic powder and cumin, and grill until tender; simmer broccoli florets and yellow onions in stock, then purée with coconut milk and chill for a creamy soup; toss small broccoli florets with baby spinach, shaved red cabbage, grated carrots, and chopped strawberries, and dress with a lemon-olive oil vinaigrette.


Cantaloupe * One cup, cubed = 58mg * DV: 64 percent

Recipe Tips: Purée cantaloupe cubes with fresh peaches and minced thyme and freeze in an ice cream maker; toss diced cantaloupe with minced serrano peppers, red bell peppers, red onion, cilantro, and lime juice for a zesty salsa; make a breakfast bowl with cantaloupe balls, blueberries, Greek yogurt, and low-sugar granola.

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Photo: Pornchai Mittongtare; Styling: Robin Turk; Food Stylist: Claire Stancer

Strong, healthy joints. Vitamin C regulates the synthesis of the structural protein collagen, involved in building joint cartilage—especially important during summer when hiking, biking, running, and other activities can take a toll on joints. Studies also suggest that vitamin C improves healing of soft tissue and tendon injuries.


Papayas * One cup, cubed = 87 mg * DV: 97 percent


You may take vitamin C for granted—it’s one of those ho-hum nutrients most of us forget about unless it’s winter, and you’re battling a cold. But this crucial antioxidant plays a profound, year-round role in our health. Some of its most important benefits:


it ! ke

Grilled Pepper Salad with Black Beans & Avocado Serves 4 Break out the grill one last time this summer for this delicious, easy-to-make, entrée salad.

1 lb. mini sweet peppers, coated with nonstick spray 1 medium red onion, sliced into ½-inch-thick rings, coated with nonstick spray 1 15-oz. can no-salt-added black beans, drained and rinsed 1 avocado, cubed ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro 1 Tbs. fresh lime juice 1 Tbs. olive oil 1 tsp. kosher salt Black pepper to taste 1. Preheat grill to medium-high. Grill sweet peppers and red onion rings on all sides until grill marks appear, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer to plate and let cool. Discard pepper stems and seeds, and chop peppers and onion into small dice. 2. Combine beans, avocado, cilantro, sweet peppers, and red onion in salad bowl and toss with lime juice, oil, salt, and pepper. Per serving: 240 cal; 8g prot; 12g total fat (1.5g sat fat); 29g carb; 0mg chol; 500mg sod; 10g fiber; 2g sugar

5 Photo: Pornchai Mittongtare; Styling: Robin Turk; Food Stylist: Claire Stancer


Kiwi fruit * One medium = 64mg * DV: 71 percent

Recipe Tips: Purée kiwi chunks and lime juice until smooth, add whole raspberries and freeze in Popsicle molds; toss kiwi slices with endive, blackberries and goat cheese, and dress with a lemon-basil vinaigrette; purée kiwi with frozen bananas, baby spinach, strawberries, and chia seeds for a fruity morning smoothie.


Strawberries * One cup, sliced = 98mg * DV: 109 percent

Recipe Tips: Toss strawberries with aged balsamic vinegar, minced basil,

and coarsely ground black pepper, and serve with a dollop of crème fraîche or mascarpone cheese; dip large strawberries in melted dark chocolate and crushed walnuts; purée strawberries with lemon juice, honey, ice cubes, and mint leaves for a refreshing, booze-free party beverage.


Cherry tomatoes * One cup = 19mg * DV: 29 percent

Recipe Tips: Thread cherry tomatoes on rosemary sprig skewers and grill until tender; make Caprese salad with whole cherry tomatoes, basil leaves, olive oil, and fresh mozzarella cheese; coarsely chop cherry tomatoes and

lightly sauté with diced yellow peppers, baby spinach, red onion, and minced thyme, and toss with pasta for a light, fresh alternative to pasta sauce.


Kale * One cup, chopped = 80mg * DV: 89 percent

Recipe Tips: Coat whole Tuscan kale leaves with olive oil, sprinkle with sea salt, and grill until crispy; finely chop baby kale and toss with corn kernels, grilled zucchini, red onion, avocado cubes, and shredded Asiago cheese; combine kale, green peas, basil, pumpkin seeds, garlic, and olive oil in a blender and process into a creamy pesto. AUGUST 2020

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eating clean made easy

A Taste of India

Looking for something different? Try this creative take on the classic Indian dish from Erin Clarke’s The Well Plated Cookbook.



i t! ke

Tandoori chicken is a warmly spiced, juicy chicken dish cooked at a high temperature in a clay oven. But if a trip to India is not in your near future, how can you satisfy your craving for tandoori chicken at home? Make a sheet pan rendition! This version is cooked in the oven, and the spices are available at any health food or grocery store. While it’s not 100 percent authentic, the robust mix of spices and tenderness of the chicken resemble dishes abroad and at Indian restaurants. Sweet potato, cauliflower, and chickpeas are added to make this an all-in-one meal.

Sheet-Pan Tandoori Chicken Serves 4 Don’t skip the cilantro and lemon juice. They are the final touches that will transport you to a faraway place. Serve with brown rice or a steaming plate of naan with Greek yogurt for dipping.

1. Remove skin from chicken. Cut breasts in half crosswise, if using. 2. To large resealable plastic bag, add yogurt, garlic, ginger, cumin, 1 tsp. chili powder, and 1 tsp. salt. Seal bag to remove air, and squish ingredients together until combined. Add chicken to bag, seal, and shake to coat. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes, or up to 24 hours. 3. Preheat oven to 425°F and place rack in center. Line large-rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil and coat generously with nonstick cooking spray.


4. Drain and rinse chickpeas, and pat dry with paper towels, removing any loose skins. Place chickpeas in large mixing bowl. 5. Add cauliflower and sweet potato to bowl with chickpeas. Drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle with remaining chili powder, turmeric, and remaining salt. Toss to evenly coat, and spread into single layer on prepared baking sheet. 6. Remove chicken from bag, and shake off any excess marinade. Arrange piece on top of vegetables, and bake 15 minutes. Remove pan from oven and carefully stir veggies around to promote even cooking. Return pan to oven, and bake 15–20 minutes more, until chicken

reaches internal temperature of 165°F and juices run clear when sliced. 7. Squeeze lemon over chicken and veggies, sprinkle with cilantro, and serve. Per serving: 620 cal; 49g prot;34g total fat (9g sat fat); 29g carb; 145mg chol; 1090mg sod; 9g fiber; 7g sugar Excerpted from The Well Plated Cookbook by Erin Clarke with permission of Avery, an imprint of Penguin Publishing Group, a division of Penguin Random House LLC. Copyright © Erin Clarke, 2020.

Photo: Courtesy of Avery⁄Penguin Random House

1¾ lbs. bone-in, skin-on chicken parts (any mix of thighs, drumsticks, and breasts; wings not recommended) ½ cup nonfat Greek yogurt 4 cloves garlic, minced (about 4 tsp.) 1 Tbs. minced fresh ginger 1 Tbs. ground cumin 2½ tsp. chili powder, divided 1½ tsp. kosher salt, divided 1 15-oz. can reduced sodium chickpeas 1 small head cauliflower, chopped into ¾-inch wide florets (about 4½ cups) 1 sweet potato, peel-on, cut into ¾-inch cubes (about 2 cups) 1½ Tbs. extra virgin olive oil 1 tsp. ground turmeric 1 large lemon, halved Freshly chopped cilantro

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easy ways to boost your nutrition

Crazy for Keto Chaffles

Simpler than cloud bread and other keto-friendly bread alternatives, chaffles are really just waffle-shaped cheese omelets. The cheese creates a crisp crust similar to a traditional waffle—and collagen powder adds beauty benefits.


did you know ...

Keto Chaffles Serves 1 You can add ingredients to this base recipe to suit any savory or sweet craving you might have. For example, add 2 Tbs. ranch dressing into the mixing bowl with the other batter ingredients for a little extra kick. Primal Kitchen Avocado Oil Spray 1 egg ½ cup shredded cheddar cheese 1 Tbs. almond flour 1 scoop Primal Kitchen Collagen Peptides

almond flour, and collagen peptides. Whisk the mixture until combined. 3. Pour chaffle mixture into waffle maker, and cook 3–4 minutes. Using a spatula, carefully remove the chaffle and place on plate to serve.

1. Heat waffle maker for a minute or two, and spray inside with Avocado Oil Spray. 2. In mixing bowl, crack one egg. Add shredded cheese,

Collagen peptides help support hair, skin, and nails, and pair perfectly with many recipes, including savory soups, shakes, smoothies, coffee, baked goods—and of course chaffles!

Primal Kitchen Collagen Peptides

Per serving: 380 cal; 31g prot; 27g total fat (12g sat fat); 4g carb; 240mg chol; 480mg sod; 1g fiber; 1g sugar Recipe courtesy

Photo courtesy of

In case you’ve missed out on the social media buzz, chaffles are one of the latest low-carb bread replacement crazes. Chaffles equals cheese plus waffle. There’s one more ingredient to this mathematical equation—eggs, which give the chaffle recipe structure and some volume. The easiest way to make a chaffle: Use a waffle maker. You could technically cook chaffles in a pan or in the oven, but you won’t get the unique waffle shape and aesthetic if you don’t use a waffle maker. You can make chaffles from the two-ingredient recipe here (eggs and cheese), but we wanted more structure and that crisp bite of freshly toasted waffles. So we added almond flour and collagen peptides (you can also use whey protein).

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