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eat | think | move

SUMMER LOVIN’ Why we’re crushing on berries

BUILD A BETTER BURGER Your grilling go-to just got a makeover

SNACK SMARTER 5 healthy chip alternatives

TRAIN FOR YOUR LIFE Don’t settle for someone else’s workout

Compliments of


GO RAW Reboot ! y system w our ith raw food a diet

from the editors

The Time Is Ripe BARDS HAVE LONG WAXED eloquent about summer. To American essayist Charles Bowden, summertime was “always the best of what might be,” while Henry James declared “summer afternoon” the two most beautiful words in the English language. In Shakespeare’s assessment, “summer’s lease hath all too short a date.” We, too, are bullish on summer. For us, it’s a time to shed—to be free and let go. Shoes are suddenly extraneous, coats tucked in closets. Schedules relax. Foods are fresh, whole, delicious. Long daylight hours beckon us outdoors, where anxieties and excess pounds melt away.


This season, while you naturally ease the demands on your calendar and your life as a whole, take the opportunity to reinvent yourself. Perhaps that’s why the lure of a raw food diet, as highlighted in Nancy Coulter-Parker’s “Going Raw” seems especially compelling this time of year. For some people, eating raw is a way of life, but for many it serves as a refreshing break from cooked and processed foods, as well as the heat of the kitchen. This clean, powerful way of eating eliminates toxins and other digestive stressors. In turn, you gain the energy you need to make the most of lengthy summer days. Some of our favorite raw foods are fresh berries, as iconic to summer as pumpkin is to fall.


These colorful, seasonal treats are—research shows—actually disease-fighting warriors housed in sweet and delicate packaging. We demonstrate not only why to eat berries but also how. Find refreshing berry recipes from our chef friends at Johnson & Wales College of Culinary Arts inside. This season, while you naturally ease the demands on your calendar, your workouts, even your digestive system, take the opportunity to reinvent yourself, as our resident naturopathic expert Dr. James Rouse suggests. “If you’ve been pressed all winter saying, ‘I can’t find the time to do the things I want to do,’ now we’ve gained a couple of hours to fit in windows for wellness. And we should really leverage that.” By developing new healthy life patterns to carry into fall, we might just discover that summer’s lease isn’t so short after all. Enjoy the issue. Embrace the season. Do good things. —The Editors


BUILD From the Proteins make you what you are. They are the structure of all cells in the body. Your body consists of thousands of different proteins found in every body part and tissue. They carry oxygen, they help you grow, repair and rebuild tissue. Get enough protein, and get the most out of every day.

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CONSUMER: Limit one coupon per purchase on product(s) indicated. You pay sales tax, if any. Not to be combined with other offers or discounts unless authorized by Mars Symbioscience. MAXIMUM VALUE: $5.00. Void if altered, transferred, sold, reproduced or exchanged. RETAILER: Mars Symbioscience will reimburse you for the face value of the coupon plus $.14 handling if submitted in compliance with Mars Symbioscience Coupon Redemption Policy - #M1, available upon request, incorporated herein by reference. Valid only in USA. Void where prohibited, taxed or restricted by law. Cash value 1/100 of one cent. Send coupon to: Mars Chocolate North America, PO Box: 880499, El Paso, TX 885880499. ®/TM Trademarks © Mars, Incorporated 2015.

volume 03, issue 03: summer 2015

contents 41

departments begin 07 “Eating local foods that are in season connects you to the places and people around you...and they simply taste better.” PLUS: Find your perfect protein powder and activity tracker, eat better to sleep better, make your workout a game and more.




Who needs a pharmacy when you’ve got berries? These warmweather treats are small but mighty when it comes to disease prevention. Try them in delicious recipes from our friends at the Johnson & Wales College of Culinary Arts.

21 M  AKE IT. BUY IT. The bounty of fresh produce makes summer the ideal time to mix up your own salsas. Here we offer four creative ideas (Bloody Mary salsa, anyone?) as well as healthy store-bought options for the time-crunched.

32 10




It’s summertime, and the grilling is easy—and tastier and healthier than ever.

think 30 FEAR AND LOATHING IN THE KITCHEN Are your cooking tools killing you? We sort out truth from myth. BY REBECCA L. OLGEIRSON

move 41 T  RAIN FOR YOUR LIFE Put the new functional fitness to work for you. BY KELLEE KATAGI

boost 45 S  UPPLEMENTS

feature 32


You don’t have to become a fanatic to experience the benefits of a raw diet. And trust us, there are a lot of them. BY NANCY COULTER-PARKER


Boost energy like an ancient Andean, and learn when to take which supplements.

thrive 52 DR. JAMES ROUSE Reinvent yourself this season. Be the sermon, not the preacher. Create a self-care practice.


Raspberry Banana SMOOTHIE


Blend ingredients and enjoy!

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1 serving Vega One French Vanilla 1 frozen banana 1-2 Tbsp almond butter ½ cup raspberries 1 ½ cups almond milk Cinnamon, optional


On any small tub of Vega One Nutritional Shake (14.6ozâ&#x20AC;&#x201C;15.4oz)

To Consumer: Redeem only by purchasing the brand and size(s) indicated. May not be reproduced. Void if transferred to any person, firm, or group prior to store redemption. Coupon valid in-store only. Only one coupon may be used on one tub per purchase. One time use only. Redeemable at: Valid in King Soopers stores where Vega is sold. Offer valid until 10/01/15. Contact/ Inquire within.

SAVE 5 $

To Retailer: Vega will reimburse you the face value of this coupon plus 8 cents handling in accordance with our redemption policy (copy available upon request). Consumer must pay any sales tax. Send all redeemed coupons to: Vega, Mandlik & Rhodes, PO Box 490 Dept #1215, Tecate, CA 91980.



Vega One available in select King Soopers locations.




LIVE A FAST-PACED LIFE long enough, and there are bound to be some casualties. An inevitable one is your relationship to food. Before long, the practice of enjoying wholesome meals with friends and family gives way to scarfing down breakfast while driving, eating most meals out or having a microwaved dinner alone in front of the TV. Richard McCarthy, executive director of Slow Food USA, reminds us of the importance of reclaiming one of life’s greatest pleasures: savoring good food with others. What is Slow Food USA all about? RICHARD McCARTHY: At its core, Slow

Food is about rediscovering a taste of place in our lives by promoting the perspective of food as the center of community life. There are 175 Slow Food chapters across the country, each made up of a network of volunteers who do everything from facilitate cooking classes and dinner parties to run local farm tours and show

films. The goal is to create community around food and to connect people to their local food sources. What are some of Slow Food’s biggest projects?

One of the main things we do is develop and sustain school gardens. It’s important for kids to develop a tactile relationship to food. When they plant a seed, water it and then pull up a carrot from the ground, they’ll never think about carrots the same way when they see them in the grocery store. We also started an international “Ark of Taste,” which aims to prevent the loss of endangered foods. By working with seed banks and companies, food producers, and farmers, we reintroduce and support traditional crops and foods that are disappearing. How can consumers make better food choices?

Eating local foods that are in season connects you to the places and people around you. Purchasing local food supports

Based in Brooklyn, NY, Slow Food USA’s Richard McCarthy encourages even urban dwellers to bond over local food.

the farms in your region. And because local foods aren’t transported over vast distances, they simply taste better. The freshest and healthiest foods tend to be found along the perimeter of the grocery store, in the produce, meat, bulk and dairy sections. These whole, unprocessed foods should make up most of what you buy. How do we incorporate the concept of community around food into our busy lives?

Taking the time to sit down with family or others and sharing a meal makes us happier. And fascinating public health studies show that it makes us healthier too. As an organization, we’re committed to finding a balance between the pleasure of enjoying good food and making it work in our lives by meeting people where they are. When there’s joy and excitement about learning to cook and eating together, it’s no longer the drudgery of everyday life—it’s the revolution of everyday life. Learn more at




Powder to the People


The Institute of Medicine recommends 0.5–0.7 grams of protein per pound of body weight per day. For an easy way to calculate your protein needs, check out


WHETHER YOU’RE A WEIGHT LIFTER, a weight loser or just plain health conscious, a journey down the protein powder aisle can be overwhelming. To choose the right one for you, first decide on your ultimate health goal. Then check out our top picks in five key categories to find the protein powder that can get you there.

What to look for:

Our pick: Why we like it:

What’s inside:

Meal Replacement

Pre-Workout/ Endurance

If your drink is standing in for a meal, make sure it has several grams of fiber, which fills you up and keeps you satisfied longer. If you don’t feel full after finishing your meal-replacement drink, you don’t have the right product.


Muscle Growth

Post-Workout/ Recovery

To rev your metabolism, opt for protein with essential amino acids (protein building blocks the body can’t produce itself). Whey concentrate and soy fit the bill. They release into your system more slowly than isolates, energizing you for your whole workout.

Plant-based proteins have a lower biological value (BV measures how well the body can absorb and use a protein) than animal-based ones, so look for powders that combine different plant types to create a more complex protein.

For muscle tissue repair and growth you need protein, and lots of it. Whey protein in an isolate form (microfiltered to create a 90–97 percent pure protein) has the highest BV of any protein, promoting greater lean-muscle gains.

There is a critical 30-minute “window of opportunity” after a workout in which the body best responds to nutritional supplements. Whey is the “whey” to go: A protein with a high BV paired with branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) repairs and builds muscle faster.

Garden of Life Raw Fit

Nature’s Plus Spiru-Tein

Vega Protein & Greens Vanilla

Jay Robb Whey Protein Vanilla

Pure Protein Natural Whey French Vanilla

It works! Our testers felt satisfied, with no cravings for hours. This nutritious meal-on-the-go features plant proteins—13 sprouted grains, seeds and legumes— plus live probiotics and enzymes for digestive and immune system health.

This non-GMO protein blend of rice, pea and soy packs in 14,000 mg of amino acids (including the nine essentials). It mixes instantly (no blender required) for a flavor-rich treat with only 99 calories and 100 percent daily value of all vitamins.

Keep the kale in the crisper and still get your daily dose of greens—two full servings— along with your protein. This blend includes pea, hemp and sprouted whole-grain brown rice proteins. Plus, it mixes up smooth, even with water.

It’s clean and green. Coldprocessed, cross-flow microfiltered whey isolate derived from grass-fed cows not treated with rBGH absorbs quickly for a rapid boost. This ultra-pure protein blends easily and tastes great.

Fast-absorbing whey isolate protein and 5 grams of BCAAs for immediate delivery to muscles, plus slower-acting whey protein concentrate to repair muscle damage. The nutrient-dense powder easily dissolves for a great-tasting, low-fat treat.

Protein: 28g Carbs: 12g Calories: 170 Fiber: 4g Sweetener: organic stevia leaf

Protein: 14g Carbs: 11g Calories: 99 Fiber: 1g Sweetener: fructose

Protein: 20g Carbs: 6g Calories: 110 Fiber: 1g Sweetener: organic stevia leaf extract

Protein: 25g Carbs: 1g Calories: 110 Fiber: 0g Sweetener: Reb-A stevia

Protein: 23g Carbs: 6g Calories: 130 Fiber: 0g Sweetener: stevia leaf extract

Bonus points for: Also try:









Designer Whey French Vanilla

Nature’s Plus Spiru-Tein




8 Summer 2015 / Optimum Wellness


Garden of Life Raw Meal Vanilla Spiced Chai




Vega Sport Recovery Accelerator (Apple Berry or Tropical)

Designer Whey French Vanilla







Balance Bar® is a nutritious snack alternative with the perfect balance of great taste and energy.

Pure Protein® makes it easy to fuel your inner athlete with the perfect combination of high protein and great taste.

MET-Rx® is focused on one thing: making the best workout fuel possible. The right way, the real way.

YOU CAN’T FAKE STRONG *This statement has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

POWER YOUR PURPOSE © 2015 United States Nutrition, Inc.





Numerous studies have shown that drinking two glasses of tart cherry juice per day may raise sleep quality and quantity. Sleep enhancers:

Researchers in Taiwan found that study participants who ate two kiwifruit one hour before bedtime fell asleep faster and stayed asleep longer than those who didn’t.

antioxidants, melatonin

antioxidants, serotonin

Sleep enhancers:


LONG SUMMER DAYS often translate to short summer nights. Make the most of the rest you do get by eating a wide range of nutrients. One recent study found that people with the most varied diets tend to be the best sleepers, while those who didn’t sleep as well had diets low in carbohydrates and lycopene, a nutrient found in red and orange foods such as tomatoes and carrots. For additional nighttime support, work these three sleep-boosting foods into your day. —K.K.

Tuna, salmon and halibut pack high doses of omega-3 fatty acids and B-complex vitamins, both of which help produce brain chemicals, such as tryptophan and melatonin, that encourage sleep. Aim for at least two 4-ounce servings per week. Sleep enhancers: omega-3s, B vitamins

Naturally Easy

FREE FROM 101 All Simple Truth products come with a straightforward guarantee Kroger calls “Free From 101.” Celebrating what’s not in these foods, the Free From 101 label means that a specific product does not contain any of 101 artificial ingredients and preservatives, such as high-fructose corn syrup, sodium benzoate or sorbic acid (see #74 at right).

101: PRODUCT SPOTLIGHT ORGANIC TRAIL MIX This all-organic blend of raisins, almonds, peanuts, sunflower and pumpkin seeds, apricots, apples and more upgrades old-school trail mixes. With 4 grams of protein per serving, it delivers an energizing boost at work or recess.

#74: SORBIC ACID In its pure form, sorbic acid is a compound extracted from fruit. But more often it’s a synthetic preservative that controls the growth of yeasts and molds in foods such as cheese, yogurt, pastries and bagels. The FDA labels sorbic acid as “Generally Recognized As Safe,” but some evidence suggests it can cause mild skin and GI irritation.



SHOPPING FOR HEALTHY FOOD SHOULD be easy. But when it comes to organic and natural products, it can get confusing…fast. That’s where Simple Truth comes in. Found exclusively at King Soopers and City Market stores throughout Colorado, it’s an affordable and trustworthy solution to the challenge of eating better. Simple Truth items can be easily identified in their trademark packaging, with easy-to-understand ingredient lists and product labels.

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6/2/15 2:19 PM




NOT SURE WHICH SIDE OF THE ROAD you should be riding on, or if it’s okay to ride two abreast? Dan Grunig, executive director of Bicycle Colorado, a statewide nonprofit that promotes cycling and bicycle safety, says, “Ride your bike like you drive your car; same rules, same rights.” Here’s how to stay safe and get along with motorists: Flow with traffic. Ride on the right side of the road with cars moving in your same direction. “A bicycle is considered a vehicle,” Grunig says. “Ride where motorists can see you.”

Communicate. Signal a turn by sticking out your arm. Point your hand in the direction you’re turning. Stick out a bent arm with your fingertips pointing down to indicate you’re stopping.

Claim your place in traffic at an intersection, in line with the cars. When the light turns green, move from the center of the lane into the shoulder or bike lane.

Ride single file when cars want to pass. If you’re riding side by side, adjust when cars approach from behind.

Make yourself visible. Always use reflectors and lights at night and in bad weather. “Also, wear bright clothing, and use a flashing tail light whenever you’re riding,” says Grunig.

Know the law. Cycling (and motorist) laws vary depending on your state or municipality, and ignorance is no excuse for breaking them. Visit official websites or contact cycling advocacy groups to learn the rules before you ride.


Keeping Track THE UPS AND DOWNS OF ACTIVITY MONITORS BY KELLEE KATAGI The benefits? Studies show that people are more active when they wear a tracker, especially if they set a specific goal such as 10,000 steps per day. The caveat? Studies indicate that tracker results are inaccurate, generally a rough estimate of what they’re measuring (the top brands deliver numbers within about 10–15 percent of reality, according to research published in Medicine & Science in Sports and Exercise).

STEP/MOVEMENT TRACKERS Americans have used pedometers since Thomas Jefferson created the first one in the late 1700s. Today, most people prefer accelerometers (think Fitbit or Nike FuelBand), which use a three-axis mechanism to also register more complex movements. Accelerometers tend to be more expensive and are now built into some phones and watches. But studies show simple pedometers—which you can find for $10 or less—can be just as effective in spurring more activity. Best for: Anyone who wants to move more Try: Omron pedometers, Jawbone UP Move

CALORIE COUNTERS The operative phrase here is “ballpark figures.” Calorie trackers are almost always combined with other activity monitors, and nearly every company employs a different algorithm to calculate calories burned, which means results vary widely. Possible variables include step count, skin temperature, weight, height (to determine stride length), gender and age. The most accurate devices factor in heart rate as well. Best for: People who also monitor calorie intake Try: Nike FuelBand, Polar RSX3

SLEEP TRACKERS The relative new kid on the block, sleep trackers claim to evaluate how much and how deeply you sleep by essentially measuring how still you are during the night. But do they work? Research points to moderate accuracy on the amount of sleep and poor performance regarding the quality of sleep. Best for: Anyone who needs motivation to go to bed earlier Try: Basis Peak, Jawbone UP3

HEART RATE MONITORS Popular with athletes since the 1980s, heart rate monitors can help anyone who wants to make workouts more efficient or improve athletic performance. They gauge how intensely your body is working, allowing you to tailor workouts to meet specific goals. Best for: Performance-driven athletes Try: Suunto Quest, Garmin Forerunner

MULTI-FUNCTION These combine all of the above—and often more—into one device. Many come with apps or online connections that allow you to store your results and compare them with a community of like-minded individuals. Studies reveal that people who do so tend to be more active than those who don’t. Also, some deliver bossy messages—er, notifications—if you’ve been inactive for too long. Best for: Gadget enthusiasts and data lovers Try: Fitbit Surge, Apple Watch

12 Summer 2015 / Optimum Wellness

A Healthy Distraction For those who dread the thought of slogging through another cardio session at the gym, science has your back: Studies show that distracting yourself can help you exercise longer and enjoy it more. If music or TV don’t cut it, try Goji Play ($100), a device and app that turn your cardioequipment workout into a rollicking video game. You’ll set your tablet or smartphone up on the treadmill, stationary bike or any cardio machine that you use. Choose from a couple dozen games, such as old favorites like racing, block stacking, boxing and trivia. Strap the two game controllers onto the cardio-equipment handles to play your game, while a wireless sensor monitors your movement and tracks workout metrics such as steps taken and calories burned. For some games, the more you move, the better your score. It’s a bit of a chore to set up, but worth the trouble if it gets you to the gym. The fine print: To use Goji Play, you’ll need a newer-version Apple device (for example, iPad 3 and above, iPhone 4s and above). Find it online at—K.K.


WHEN YOU WERE a teenager, your mom wanted to know your every move. Now, you do—and you’re not alone. Upward of 19 million people worldwide use an activity tracker, a number that’s expected to more than triple by 2018, according to market-consulting firm Juniper Research. The most basic trackers record how many steps you take or the calories you burn, while others monitor your heart rate, sleep quality and even body temperature or skin sweat.




accounted for 40 percent of all packaged food sales in the U.S. last year, as Americans reported increased desire for healthy, natural snacks with bolder flavor profiles, according to research from Euromonitor.

Read the Labels Some new snacks


14 Summer 2015 / Optimum Wellness

healthier contain just as many calories as regular potato and tortilla chips without

beets and sweet potatoes. Many of these better-for-you chip varieties are baked or popped (instead of fried) and have ditched the potato altogether for ingredients that deliver more fiber, protein and healthy fats, tempting your taste buds and satisfying your desire to eat well. Here are our favorite ways to get a saltysnack fix—without the guilt:

any added benefits. The ingredient list should be short and simple, with natural whole foods and oils that are very low in saturated fat (such as safflower and sunflower oils).


Potato chips are hands-down America’s favorite snack, according to the Snack Food Association—consumers spend more than $6 billion on them annually. But Americans also desire a more wholesome diet, and snack food suppliers are rising to meet that demand with superfood chip alternatives made from beans, rice, or vegetables such as kale,

claiming to be

BEAN CHIPS Chips made from whole beans pack hearty doses of fiber and protein into each serving. Many bean-chip brands use non-GMO foods, heart-smart oils and no artificial ingredients—as well as less sodium than most snack chips.

SWEET POTATO CHIPS If a potato chip is what you crave, choosing sweet potato over regular is a good idea. Sweet potatoes are chockfull of disease-fighting benefits and antioxidants such as beta carotene and vitamin A. Sweet potatoes are also higher in fiber than regular potatoes and lower on the glycemic index, helping you maintain a healthier weight.

KALE CHIPS All hail kale! Touted as one of the planet’s most beneficial superfoods, this nutritional powerhouse is rich in antioxidants, carotenoids and phytonutrients known to protect against eye diseases. Kale is also one of the richest sources of vitamin K, essential for strong, healthy bones.

RICE CHIPS Whole-grain rice, rice flour, and a blend of seeds and spices combine to make the increasingly popular glutenfree, cholesterol-free rice chips. Rice chips contain fiber and other naturally occurring nutrients such as manganese for energy production and selenium for immune system support. This guilt-free snack will leave you feeling satisfied until mealtime.

BLUE CORN TORTILLA CHIPS The next time you whip up a homemade guacamole, grab a bag of blue corn tortilla chips to go with it. Chips made from blue corn provide anthocyanins, the same kind of antioxidants present in blueberries—they’re known to protect against some types of cancers and keep vision sharp.

Editors’ Pick: Looking for a little spice? Try Beanitos Chipotle BBQ Black Bean Chips. A 1-ounce serving gives you 20 percent of the Recommended Daily Intake (RDI) of fiber.


Editors’ Pick: For pure, natural sweetness and 90 percent of the RDI of vitamin A, opt for Food Should Taste Good Original Sweet Potato Chips.


Editors’ Pick: Rhythm Superfoods Zesty Nacho Kale Chips are a savory favorite. These spicy, cheesy nibbles are air-crisped and full of flavor, with a whopping 6 grams of protein and 3 grams of fiber per serving.

Editors’ Pick: Lundberg Sesame Seaweed Rice Chips proudly display the Whole Grain Stamp, a tool that helps you meet your whole-grain quota for the day and lower your risk for heart disease, diabetes and cancer.

Editor’s Pick: Garden of Eatin’ Baked Blue Tortilla Chips are made with organic blue corn and organic flaxseed. This crispy snack is low in sodium and delivers 300 mg of heart-healthy omega-3s.



Available in 6 chip flavors


SUMMER WITHOUT BERRIES would be like Christmas without cookies. These colorful nuggets are loaded with nutrients, full of flavor and easy to incorporate into any meal. While each type of berry has its own nutritional makeup, all berries are rich in anthocyanin, a powerful flavonoid associated with reducing cardiovascular disease risk, cognitive decline and cancer. In fact, berries have a higher flavonoid content than most other fruits, making these little summer treats a potent source of antioxidants.

Berries are also quite delicate. Even with proper care and handling, they will keep for only a few days after purchase. Kim Allen, senior marketing manager at Driscoll’s, recommends keeping them dry and refrigerated until you’re ready to eat them, and only then rinsing them gently in cold water. Keep them in the original container, too, as it provides protection and airflow. “The clamshell casing is very intentional,” says Allen. “It is designed a special way for ventilation.”



Fresh easily trumps frozen when it comes to taste, but recent research from South Dakota State University suggests that freezing berries actually makes their anthocyanins more readily available to the body.





With the longest growing season of all berries, strawberries are the most readily available year-round. A great source of folate, strawberries are known to boost cardiovascular health and provide a full day’s worth of vitamin C—more than in a medium-size orange—in just one serving (about eight berries).

The Mighty Mouse of superfoods, these tiny berries pack a punch. Blueberries’ plentiful antioxidants promote better vision and may even help reverse short-term, age-related memory loss. To ensure year-round availability, they are grown in different regions throughout the Americas. Stock up and freeze blueberries in July, when large containers adorn grocery shelves.

These delicate little beauties come in a variety of colors and are a good source of the heart-healthy flavonoids quercetin and gallic acid. Raspberries are highly perishable, so look for plump, brightly colored fruits when shopping and buy only what you plan to eat. When properly cared for, raspberries will keep for two days in your refrigerator.

HEALTH BOOSTS: antioxidants; memory support

HEALTH BOOSTS: heart health; cancer-fighting properties

A single blackberry is in fact a small cluster of fruits—similar to a bunch of grapes—with a nutrient-rich seed hiding inside. These miniature clusters boast one of the highest antioxidant counts per serving of any food available, making blackberries a powerful little prevention pill. With a distinct earthy flavor, blackberries are a great snack or a tasty addition to meals or drinks.

HEALTH BOOSTS: heart health; vitamin C

HEALTH BOOSTS: antioxidants




Crimson Sunset Smoothie

1. Combine strawberries and honey mangoes in a blender and blend on highest speed until completely pureed; add ¾ cup crushed Recipe by Michelle ice; blend on highest speed for another 30 seconds. Johnson 2. Combine raspberries and blood orange in a blender on highest ¾ cup strawberries, speed until completely pureed; fresh, washed, deadd ¾ cup crushed ice; blend stemmed on highest speed for another 30 ¾ cup raspberries, fresh, seconds. washed and drained 3. Fill half a glass with the ¾ cup honey mango, strawberry and honey mango fresh, peeled and pitted mixture, and fill the remaining 1 large blood orange, half of the glass with the raspberry peeled and quartered and blood orange mixture. 1½ cups crushed ice

Bring on the Berries


Pan-Seared Halibut with Strawberry Salsa Recipe by Jasmine Smith FOR SALSA 1 quart fresh strawberries, diced small 1 jalapeno, diced small ½ avocado, minced ½ onion, minced ½ tablespoon honey Juice of ½ lime Juice of 1 orange ¼ cup cilantro, minced Salt, to taste FOR FISH 4 tablespoons oil 4 (6-ounce) halibut steaks Salt and pepper, to taste

Mixed Berries with Maple Greek Yogurt Recipe by Jaclyn Magnowski

18 Summer 2015 / Optimum Wellness

1 pint strawberries 1 pint blueberries 1 pint raspberries Zest and juice of ½ grapefruit Zest and juice of 1 orange Zest and juice of 1 lemon ½ cup Greek yogurt ¼ cup maple syrup 1 teaspoon cinnamon

1. Wash all berries under cold water; place on a paper towel to dry. 2. Cut strawberries into quarters, and place all berries in a large mixing bowl. 3. Zest the grapefruit, orange and lemon over the berries, and then juice the grapefruit, lemon and

orange over the berries and mix together. 4. In a separate bowl mix together Greek yogurt, maple syrup and cinnamon until combined. 5. To serve, scoop a generous amount of the berries into small bowls; then drizzle a generous amount of the yogurt mix over them.


1. Combine all ingredients for the salsa in a bowl. Cover and chill for 30 minutes 2. Heat a sauté pan over medium-high heat; add the oil. Season fish with salt and pepper; place on the pan for 3–4 minutes each side. Remove from pan. 3. Top halibut with the strawberry salsa.

Mama Vasso’s Gluten-Free Blackberry Cobbler Recipe by Cameron Murdzia 2 cups frozen blackberries 1½ cups brown sugar 1 cup soy milk ½ cup gluten-free all-purpose flour ½ cup oats 4 ounces Earth Balance butter spread 2 teaspoons cinnamon 2 teaspoons ground cloves 1. Preheat oven to 350°. Cook frozen blackberries on low heat in a cooking pot. 2. Once slightly rendered, add brown sugar and stir until dissolved. Add soy milk and reduce to a thicker state. 3. While mix is reducing, combine flour and oats; toast in a sauté pan until golden brown. 4. Add half the Earth Balance slowly and 1/3 of the flour mix; cook until flour taste is gone. Add spices as needed. 5. Once done to the consistency you want, pour into baking ramekins and top with the rest of the flour mix. Place slices of Earth Balance on top of the flour mix, and bake in a water bath in the oven for 10–15 minutes. Let cool before serving.


Optimum Wellness is excited to partner with the culinary masters at Johnson & Wales University. Jorge de la Torre, dean of culinary education at the Denver campus, and a few of his star students developed these recipes specifically for OW. Visit for information on Johnson & Wales College of Culinary Arts.

Mixed Berry Salad with Tangy Maple Greek Yogurt Recipe by Jaclyn Magnowski 1 pint strawberries 1 pint blueberries 1 pint raspberries Zest and juice of 1 grapefruit Zest and juice of 1 orange Zest and juice of 1 lemon ½ cup Greek yogurt ¼ cup maple syrup Salt, to taste 2 tablespoons mint 2 tablespoons basil

1 teaspoon cinnamon ½ cup Parmesan cheese 1 cup whole almonds 1 tablespoon garlic powder 1 tablespoon onion powder 1 tablespoon cayenne 2 tablespoons pepper 1 tablespoon soy sauce 1 tablespoon chili pepper 1 tablespoon paprika 4 cups arugula

1. Wash berries under cold water and place on a paper towel to dry. Cut strawberries into quarters and place all berries in a large mixing bowl. 2. Zest the grapefruit, orange and lemon over the berries. 3. Juice half the grapefruit and all of the lemon and the orange into a container and set aside. 4. In a separate bowl, mix together Greek yogurt, maple syrup, citrus juice, salt, mint, basil and cinnamon until combined. 5. On a piece of parchment paper, place tablespoons of Parmesan in a circle 2 inches apart from one another, and bake at 350° for 5 minutes or until the Parmesan is lightly golden. Gently pull off parchment paper and set aside. 6. Combine almonds, garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne, pepper, soy sauce, chili pepper and paprika in a bowl and toss until coated. Put in a 350° oven for 10 minutes or until nuts are toasted. 7. To serve, place arugula on the bottom of the plate, coat the arugula with the berry mixture, nuts and Parmesan crisp; then drizzle with the yogurt glaze.


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TROPICAL TOMATILLO SALSA MAKE IT: Tomatillos, also known as Mexican husk tomatoes, taste tart and citrusy (they are cousins to the gooseberry). That means they pair perfectly with fruit, especially tropical varieties like pineapples and mangoes, for a delicious blend of sweet and heat. Serve as part of a platter of soft cheeses or with pork, chicken or seafood.


INGREDIENTS 1½ pounds tomatillos, husked, cut into quarters 1 clove garlic 1/3 bunch cilantro, stems removed ¼ large sweet onion, cut into large pieces 2 tablespoons pickled jalapenos, diced ¼–1/3 cup water Salt to taste ¾ cup English cucumber, finely diced 1 mango, peeled and finely diced 2 cups fresh pineapple, cored and finely diced

DIRECTIONS Place tomatillos, garlic, cilantro, onion and jalapenos in a blender. Pulse until finely minced. Add ¼ cup water and pulse until smooth. Add more water if needed for thinning. Pour into a serving bowl; add salt to taste. Stir in the cucumber, mango and pineapple.

BUY IT: WINKING GIRL CRANBERRY MANGO SALSA This favorite combines fruit and tomatillos to achieve just the right balance of sweet, tart and heat. Try it with cream cheese and crackers, or as a sauce for seafood. NOTE: Owner Julie Nirvelli recently changed the name to Winking Girl Salsa from White Girl Salsa; you may see both brand names on the shelf during the transition.




LIME ‘N’ CORN SALSA MAKE IT: Summer is fresh-corn season, and there is no better way to dress up a spicy salsa than with fresh, roasted kernels straight from the cob. If time is precious, you can substitute frozen corn roasted in a cast-iron skillet. Serve this as a dip or as a burger topping. INGREDIENTS 4 ears fresh corn, husked 3 tablespoons butter, softened Chili powder 1 lime 1 (14.5-ounce) can fire-roasted petite-diced tomatoes with green chiles (do not drain) 3 canned chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (remove any stems) 1 cup canned black beans, rinsed and drained Salt and pepper to taste

DIRECTIONS Heat the grill to medium high. Rub the softened butter over the ears of corn. Sprinkle each generously with chili powder. Roast over the grill for 5–8 minutes until the corn is nicely browned. Set aside to cool. Cut the peel and the white pith from the lime, cut into quarters, and place in a blender. Add the canned tomatoes and chipotle peppers. Pulse until finely chopped, and pour into a serving bowl.

SIMPLE TRUTH BLACK BEAN AND CORN SALSA This all-organic blend brings a smoky flavor and robust texture to any dish. Fire-roasted tomatoes deliver a grilled flavor while roasted corn and onions round it out and balance the spice. . 22 Summer 2015 / Optimum Wellness


Cut the corn from the ears and place corn and beans in the bowl with the salsa. Stir well and serve.

Copyright © Lifeway Foods, Inc., 2015.


10 Live & Active Probiotic Cultures W organic whole milk X high in protein, calcium & vitamin D X gluten-free, GMO-free, 99% lactose-free W contains half the sugars of most kids juices & yogurts


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CONSUMER: Limit one coupon per item purchased. This coupon good only on product size and variety indicated. Void if copied or where prohibited. Must be presented at time of purchase. You may pay sales tax. Retailer: Lifeway Foods, Inc. will reimburse you face value plus 8 cents if submitted in accordance with Lifeway Foods Redemption Policy, copies available upon request. Cash value 1/100 cents. Invoices proving purchase of sufficient stock of Helios Brands must be shown upon request, mail to: Lifeway Foods, Inc. Coupon Center, 6431 W. Oakton St. Morton Grove, IL 60053.

ProBugs Organic Kefir packs probiotics, protein and calcium into a nutritious, on-the-go snack. WWW.LIFEWAY.NET





BLOODY MARY SALSA MAKE IT: Weekend mornings call for a little something special. This recipe takes a cue from all the best ingredients in a Bloody Mary cocktail (minus the alcohol), and lends a little morning magic to eggs or breakfast burritos. INGREDIENTS 2 (10-ounce) cans petite-diced tomatoes with green chiles, divided (do not drain) 1 (4-ounce) can green chiles, drained and divided ½ bunch cilantro 1/8 teaspoon cumin ¼ teaspoon prepared horseradish 2 celery stalks, diced ½ cup coarsely chopped green olives with red pepper centers 2 slices bacon, cooked, drained and crumbled 4 green onions, chopped (discard the green ends) 4 dashes Worcestershire sauce Freshly ground pepper

BUY IT: RELIGIOUS EXPERIENCE SALSA At Religious Experience, it’s not all about the heat. Cumin in the mild salsa gives it a round and rich smoky flavor. The company buys peppers, tomatillos and tomatoes grown within 50 miles of its plant in Grand Junction, Colorado. Plus, it’s free from vinegar, fillers and artificial flavors. 24 Summer 2015 / Optimum Wellness


DIRECTIONS Place one can tomatoes and chiles in a blender with half can green chiles. Add cilantro, cumin and horseradish. Pulse until finely blended. Pour into serving dish. Add celery, green olives, bacon, green onions and the remaining green chiles. Stir well. Add Worcestershire sauce, and season with freshly ground pepper to taste. Stir to mix well.

When you buy

We love everything about summer. Warm breezes. Longer days. More time outside with family, friends and real good food! Made with sprouted seeds, beans and grains. It’s gluten-free, whole grain deliciousness made way better!

ONE Way Better Snacks Product

Make it a Way Better Summer!

© 2015 Way Better Snacks, All rights reserved. Not valid on 1.25 oz. Void if altered or copied. Limit one coupon per purchase of specified product(s). RETAILER – Live Better Brands, LLC will reimburse you the face value of this coupon plus 8¢ handling provided it is redeemed by a consumer at the time of purchase on the brand specified. Coupons not properly redeemed will be void and held. Reproduction of this coupon is expressly prohibited (ANY OTHER USE CONSTITUTES FRAUD). Mail to Live Better Brands, LLC, 800 Washington Ave N, Suite 207, Minneapolis, MN 55401. Cash value .001¢. Void where taxed or restricted. LIMIT ONE COUPON PER ITEM PURCHASED. CONSUMER – LIMIT ONE COUPON PER ITEM PURCHASED. Void if reproduced, altered or expired. Consumer is responsible for any sales tax.


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PLANTAIN AND BLACK-EYED PEA SALSA MAKE IT: African and Caribbean cuisines use plantains and black-eyed peas in tomato stews. So why not in a salsa? The plantains provide sweetness, and the black-eyed peas some protein. It’s nearly a perfect meal as is, but we recommend you serve it with grilled fish. DIRECTIONS Heat a nonstick skillet over medium heat, and add 2 tablespoons of butter. When butter is melted, add the plantains and onions. Sauté until the plantain is a deep golden brown, about 6–8 minutes. Remove from pan and set aside. Add the remaining butter, garlic, curry and red pepper. Turn the heat to medium low, and sauté for about 3 minutes until the garlic is soft and fragrant. Add black-eyed peas, tomatoes and chiles and cook for 2 more minutes, until just heated through. Place all the ingredients in a bowl and stir gently to mix well. Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper. Cool to room temperature before serving.

BUY IT: ROBERTO’S GREEN CHILI SALSA Roberto’s refrigerated salsas are made with fresh tomatoes, green chiles, onions, salt, garlic and spices. The fresh taste is ideal for fajitas, grilled chicken or fish. You can find it in the salsa-aisle refrigerator case alongside Mexican cheeses. 26 Summer 2015 / Optimum Wellness

TIP: In the tropical regions where plantains grow, they are typically eaten as other cultures eat pasta or potatoes. Their taste varies greatly depending on their ripeness. When the peel is green, the interior flesh will be starchy. Riper plantains, yellow or even black, taste much sweeter. For this recipe, look for a yellow plantain.


INGREDIENTS 3 tablespoons butter, divided 1 ripe yellow plantain, peeled and cut into medium chunks ¼ onion, chopped 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced ½ teaspoon curry powder (optional) ½ red pepper, diced 1 cup canned black-eyed peas, rinsed and drained 4 medium tomatoes, finely diced 1 (4-ounce) can green chiles, drained Salt and pepper

It’s easy to get obsessed with gluten-free Nut Thins.® After all, they’re packed with the crunchy goodness of Blue Diamond®Almonds. And with only 130 calories in 13 crackers, and 2 grams of protein per serving, they’re pretty irresistible. © 2015 Blue Diamond Growers. All rights reserved.


A Better Burger

THREE WAYS TO UPGRADE A SUMMER STAPLE BY KIMBERLY LORD STEWART LONG SUMMER DAYS are the perfect time to put dinner on a bun, sit back and relax. Sure, ground beef hogs the burger spotlight, but these recipes are so tasty that everyone will be excited for something new.

TIP: Combine drained and slightly mashed beans and lentils with ground meat to enhance nutrition—plus, you’ll stretch your food dollar by adding more servings to a pound of meat. Try no-sodium organic varieties, including white beans in chicken, pinto beans in bison and lentils in turkey.

Ginger Soy Salmon Burgers

Whiskey-Glazed Onion Bison Burgers

Heart healthy never tasted so good. Omega-3-rich salmon burgers are delicate; use a perforated grill pan to cook them. Makes 4 large burgers, 6 small

This Mountain West–inspired burger features big flavors to satisfy big appetites. Bison is lean and best served medium-rare to medium to retain the juices. Makes 4 burgers

1 pound salmon filet, skin and bones removed 3 green onions, finely sliced 1-inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and finely minced 1 clove garlic, finely minced 2 tablespoons soy sauce, divided 2 tablespoons lime juice, divided 1 egg white ½ cup panko bread crumbs 2 tablespoons sweet chile sauce Black sesame seed buns Honey mustard English cucumber, thinly sliced Microgreens or watercress 1. Cut the salmon filet into four pieces; set aside the thickest piece. Place remainder in a food processor. Gently pulse until coarsely ground. Do not

pulverize, or you will have a fish paste. Place in a large bowl. 2. Cut remaining salmon into small cubes and add to the bowl. Gently combine. 3. Add green onions, ginger, garlic, 1 tablespoon lime juice and 1 tablespoon soy sauce. Stir gently until combined. 4. Add egg white and bread crumbs; stir well. 5. Form into patties. Preheat grill and grill pan to medium heat; oil the grill pan generously. 6. Place burgers on pan and grill for 3–4 minutes on each side. 7. Blend lime juice, sweet chile sauce and remaining soy sauce. 8. Serve with honey mustard, cucumbers, sweet chile sauce and microgreens.

28 Summer 2015 / Optimum Wellness

2 tablespoons canola oil, divided 2 onions, peeled and thinly sliced 1 jalapeno, seeded and thinly sliced 2 ounces whiskey 2 tablespoons brown sugar 1 pound ground bison Salt and pepper Barbecue sauce Blue cheese Potato rolls 1. Add 1 tablespoon oil to a castiron skillet over medium heat. Add onions and jalapeno; turn heat to low and sauté until onions are soft and golden, about 10–15 minutes.

2. Turn up the heat to mediumhigh, add whiskey and stir to remove any brown bits. Cook for about 2 minutes and add brown sugar. Turn heat down, and sauté until sugar is dissolved. Set aside. 3. Form bison into patties; brush both sides with canola oil (this will form a crust to seal in the moisture). Season with salt and pepper. 4. Place on medium-low grill. Brush with barbecue sauce. Cook for 4 minutes on the first side, 3 on the second side. 5. Brush with a final dose of sauce. Top with blue cheese. 6. Serve with whiskey onions on potato rolls.



TIP: Add veggies to leaner meats, which tend to dry out on the grill, for moisture and a nutritional boost. Just about anything works— try finely diced onions, winter and summer squash, peppers, potatoes or sweet potatoes. It is best to cook them first, let them cool and then add them to the recipe.


1. Clean the grates so the heat transfer is uniform and at the correct temperature. 2. Preheat the grill for 15 minutes. 3. Oil the grates just before placing the burgers on the grill. 4. As burgers cook they tend to plump up as the sides contract. Press a shallow, round crater in the center of the burger, so as the meat contracts it will fill in and not look like a meatball. 5. When burgers cook the protein retracts, pushing the moisture out, so it’s best not to overhandle burgers. Flip them once and then let them be.

White-Bean Green-Chile Turkey Burgers These burgers will remind you of white-bean chili. Lean turkey tends to dry out on the grill, so white beans add moisture, nutrition and a nice texture. We used Simple Truth Organic Great Northern Beans. Makes 4 large burgers, 6 small 1 pound ground lean turkey 1 (4-ounce) can diced green chiles, drained 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 1 tablespoon chili powder 1 teaspoon garlic powder 1 teaspoon dried oregano Salt and pepper ½ small zucchini, finely diced 2 tablespoons onion, finely diced 7 ounces (half a can) low-sodium canned white beans, drained Pepper jack cheese Whole-grain sandwich thins Lettuce and tomato Chipotle mayonnaise Sweet and spicy pickles 1. Place turkey in a large bowl with green chiles. Combine well.

2. Heat a small skillet to medium; add olive oil. Sauté zucchini and onion for about 5 minutes until onion is opaque. Add chili powder, garlic, oregano, salt and pepper; cook for 2 minutes. Allow to cool. 3. In a small bowl, mash white beans until the skins and beans are coarsely broken. Add them to the turkey. Add in vegetables. 4. Form patties. Season with salt and pepper. 5. Oil the grill and cook the burgers for 6–8 minutes on each side until cooked through to a temperature of 165°. 6. Melt pepper jack cheese over patties. 7. Serve with lettuce, tomato, chipotle mayo, and sweet and spicy pickles.

Smart Swaps, Good-for-You Garnishes Let sliced and roasted vegetables stand in for the “burger,” and you’ll discover not only a health boost but also a surprisingly satisfying mouthfeel. For instance, in place of meat, season ½-inch slices of vegetables, brush with cooking oil, season with spices and dried herbs, and grill. We suggest: 1. Season thick slices of cauliflower with cumin, curry, paprika and ground pepper; grill and serve on naan bread with mango chutney. Or sprinkle with dried Italian seasoning and top with thinly sliced kalamata olives; serve on flatbread. 2. Peel sweet potatoes and cut into thick disks. Season with a dry rib rub, grill, and serve on wholegrain buns with coleslaw. 3. Grill portobello mushrooms and strips of peppers on a grill plate; serve with a dollop of guacamole and salsa on a whole-grain tortilla wrap.


Fear and Loathing in the Kitchen ARE YOUR COOKING TOOLS SLOWLY KILLING YOU—OR IS IT JUST HYPE? HERE WE SORT FACT FROM FICTION. BY REBECCA L. OLGEIRSON STEP AWAY FROM YOUR MICROWAVE. Put down the plasticware. And don’t even think about grabbing that nonstick pan. It seems there’s always a headline decrying our most convenient cooking tools. Yet, the dangers in today’s kitchen are—for the most part—not so clear-cut. How to make sense from the sensational? We asked culinary experts and food scientists to help us separate truth from myth. The answers may surprise you. 30 Summer 2015 / Optimum Wellness

CULPRIT: MICROWAVE OVEN FEAR: The microwave releases radiation SPOT FROM into your home and food. MAIN ILLO EXPERTS’ TAKE: Microwave ovens heat food using microwaves, electromagnetic radiation similar to radio waves. The microwaves reflect off the metal in the oven and cause water molecules in food to vibrate, and it’s the friction that causes food to cook. “Microwaves are nonionizing radiation, so they do not have the same risks as X-rays or other types of ionizing radiation,” explains Leslie Wooldridge, spokesperson for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). That said, the FDA regulates microwave ovens and requires fewer than 5 milliwatts of microwave radiation at approximately 2 inches from the oven door, over the lifetime of the oven. It’s a limit far below levels that would cause human harm, Wooldridge says. Still, care should be taken with containers used in the microwave: Make sure a product says that it’s microwave-safe before using, especially when it comes to plastics (see next page).



CULPRIT: NONSTICK PANS FEAR: The pans release carcinogenic chemicals into the SPOT FROM air and your food. MAIN ILLO EXPERTS’ TAKE: The fear is likely valid for pans manufactured with suspected carcinogen perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) in the nonstick coating. In fact, the EPA recommended phasing out this particular chemical, asking companies to voluntarily remove PFOAs from their manufacturing process by the end of this year. Eight major companies agreed to do so and are largely on track to keep the agreement. However, not every manufacturer is participating, and companies are not required to disclose on labels whether they use PFOAs. Also, some people are concerned that the substituting chemicals may also be harmful. The key to safety with nonstick surfaces is not letting them get above 500 degrees. “Once they get above that temperature, the surface can decompose and release chemicals in the air,” says Carl K. Winter, Ph.D., extension food toxicologist and vice chair of the Food Science and Technology Department at the University of California, Davis. Of course knowing the temperature of your frying pan is tricky, so Winter suggests never going above medium heat when cooking on a nonstick pan. Think of the pan as a tool for items that don’t take long to cook, suggests chef Howie Velie, associate dean of culinary specialization at The Culinary Institute of America. “I only use nonstick for eggs, because they don’t need to have a high flame and they cook quickly. But for a heavily sautéed fish or chicken breast, that’s where you’ll have concerns.” CULPRIT: WOODEN CUTTING BOARDS FEAR: Food-borne bacteria SPOT FROM spreads more quickly on MAIN ILLO wood surfaces. EXPERTS’ TAKE: Cutting boards—whether wood or plastic—are prime spots for bacteria, which thrive in the nicks and scratches that emerge from everyday use, says Don Schaffner, Ph.D., professor of food science at Rutgers University and a fellow at the Institute of Food Technologists. “It doesn’t take much for food, meat juices and sugar to get in there, and the bacteria will have a field day,” he explains. Both wood and plastic boards should be cleaned immediately with soap or even a diluted bleach formula; scrubbing is key to eliminating bacteria. And keeping separate cutting boards for meat and vegetables is nonnegotiable, says Schaffner. Some cooks prefer plastic boards, because they can be cleaned in a dishwasher using bacteria-killing hot water, but professional chefs usually prefer wood because it doesn’t dull knives. In either case, once grooves form in the surface, you should toss the plastic or resurface the wooden board.

CULPRIT: FROZEN MEAT FEAR: Defrosting in the microwave is unsafe. SPOT FROM EXPERTS’ TAKE: Who MAIN ILLO hasn’t come home from work only to realize dinner is still in the freezer? Unfortunately, it seems there’s really no easy—or safe—way to quickly defrost frozen meats. Although the microwave is tempting, the defrosting process should be used with care: Because water molecules are vibrating within the food, it’s impossible for the food to thaw evenly. “Always thaw overnight in the fridge,” Velie says. If defrosting in the microwave is unavoidable, be sure to check the meat often and cook thoroughly to make sure there are no frozen or raw parts remaining. Better still, let the meat sit in a pot of cold water underneath more cold running water, Velie says. The friction of the running water will defrost the meat thoroughly, but it takes time so a little patience is required. CULPRIT: PLASTICS FEAR: Chemicals with estrogenic activity are entering our food. EXPERTS’ TAKE: Bisphenol-A SPOT FROM (BPA) made headlines a few years MAIN ILLO back when it was found to leach chemicals with estrogenic activity (EA) into food and ultimately our bloodstreams. Thanks to consumer outrage, the FDA has ruled that BPA can’t be used in baby bottles, sippy cups and infant-formula packaging. Today, finding BPA-free products for the home is certainly possible. Unfortunately, BPA isn’t the only problem. There are 2,000 to 10,000 chemicals suspected to have EA, 500 of which are widely used in plastics and consumer products today. “Just because your plastic is BPA free doesn’t mean it’s EA free,” says George Bittner, Ph.D., professor of neuroscience at the University of Texas. “An estrogenic substitute chemical could actually be worse.” Currently there are no labeling requirements for plastics or any other product that may release chemicals having EA. For his home, Bittner tests all plastics and uses only EA-free containers. (Bittner owns a plastic testing lab.) For the rest of us, he recommends never putting plastic in the microwave, because heat increases the leaching of EAs into food and could also change the chemical makeup to release newly formed EAs. Before you use plastic food-storage containers, Bittner suggests assessing your household’s risk. For example, use glass containers if you are pregnant or living with children 16 years and younger, especially kids 2–10 years old—these family members are most susceptible to chemicals having EA. For households with only mature adults, the risk is probably less of a concern. If you do store food in plastic, allow it to cool completely before placing it in the container.


Contrary to popular belief, a raw food diet allows for unique and tasty recipes with a great deal of variety.

32 Summer 2015 / Optimum Wellness


“It’s not about deprivation. You can eat incredible food and experience weight loss and feel younger, more vibrant and healthy.”



hen Alissa Cohen was first diagnosed with fibromyalgia, she was a vegetarian—not eating meat, fish or poultry. Despite her diet, she was prone to illness, and her arthritislike symptoms prevailed. At the time, she worked in a health food store, where she began to take note of two regular customers—a mom and her child. “I noticed that they were never sick, not even a sniffle,” says Cohen. What was their secret to good health? A raw diet, Cohen learned. She was intrigued. “I didn’t think people could survive on a raw diet, but whenever I ate that way I felt better,” she explains. She began eating raw for extended periods of time—a

week at first, followed by a month. “I saw miraculous results both in weight loss and healing.” That was almost 30 years ago. With the aches and pains of fibromyalgia gone, the author of Living on Live Food (Cohen, 2004), stuck with the diet and began teaching classes on how to follow a raw food regimen. Her clientele, she says, tends to be older people—people experiencing illness—or the younger generation who are curious about this new fad. Cohen’s elevator pitch? “Imagine eating banana cream pie for breakfast, pizza for lunch, and enchiladas for dinner and not weighing yourself. It’s not about deprivation. You can eat incredible food and experience weight loss and feel younger, more vibrant and healthy.”



“The diet itself is very light, clean and vibrant,” says Daniel Asher, culinary director and chef at Root Down in Denver, Colorado, which serves a four-course raw menu the first Tuesday of every month. Asher himself has been a raw foodist, a vegan and a vegetarian. “A raw diet is a great way to make vegetables the center of the meal,” he says. That’s putting it mildly. With a raw food diet, vegetables pretty much are the meal. Beyond the veggies, you can eat fruits, nuts and seeds, some grains, herbs and spices, seaweed, and sprouted beans. For the most part, a raw food diet is seasonal and plant based, but some “raw foodies” “A raw food diet can will include unpasteurized dairy be a great detox tool products, raw eggs and raw meat such for a couple of weeks, as carpaccio or sashimi in their diets. to eliminate the dairy Although it sounds limited, Asher, like Cohen, has found there to be more and processed food. It’s variety than one would expect. That is, wonderful for that.” if you’re willing to take time to engage –ANI PHYO some different cooking practices. “The processes used usually involve some sort of low-temperature dehydration, fermentation or marination. All of these great processes inevitably lend to a lightness of food,” says Asher. He gives the example of making a raw flaxseed flatbread-style pizza, topped with pureed heirloom tomatoes, vegetables, tamari, ginger, a drizzle of balsamic vinegar and whipped cashew cheese. “It’s incredible— think of all of the notes that you would get in a high-fat, cooked pizza with tomato sauce, cheese and pepperoni.

Summer 2015 2015 / Optimum / Optimum Wellness Wellness 34 Spring

With this raw pizza you can get that same reaction from the palate, but you haven’t compromised flavor. And you feel good because your body is energized. You feel like going for a hike for a few hours, and you’re engaged. If you ate the normal pizza and drank a Pepsi, you’d want to take a nap.”

SO WHAT’S NOT TO LIKE? One of the key tenets of a raw diet is that foods cannot be cooked or heated above 115–118 degrees Fahrenheit. The thinking behind this is that cooking at higher temperatures breaks down a food’s enzymes, eliminating many of its nutritional benefits in the process. Advocates of a raw food regimen tend to believe the American diet is too meat focused, and that processed foods and chemicals are leading to a decline in our health. As Asher notes, “If more people made vegetables the center of the plate more frequently, we would probably have a better-balanced food system and healthier agriculture system.” Although many nutritionists are advocating that the American population should eat less meat, there is no hard science to date to back the benefits of a raw diet or to verify that food loses its nutritional value when it is cooked. “Raw foodies say cooking food destroys the nutrients. No, that is not the case,” says Karen Dolins, R.D., a nutritionist and exercise physiologist, as well as an adjunct associate professor in the Department of Health and Behavior Studies at Teachers College, Columbia University. “This is a personal belief; there is no science or research behind it.” More precisely, some vitamins are destroyed by heat but


Pistachios and coconut combine for delectable raw treats.

COMMON MYTHS OF THE RAW DIET 1. I AM GOING TO STARVE. This isn’t the case, says raw food author Alissa Cohen. “You can eat incredible food— brownies, sundaes, calzones. You can really eat what you want and not worry about it. You can have dessert for breakfast.”


Craving a burger? A raw-veggie patty is a strong and healthy substitute.

minerals are not, Dolins explains. “[But] when the nutrient content of foods is assessed by the USDA, that loss is taken into account, so there is a buffer there.” Cooking can release some nutrients from food, but it can also make it easier for our bodies to absorb nutrients from food, she says. “Now, if you take a nice head of broccoli and you let it sit in the pot cooking for half an hour, you will destroy its nutritional value. But if you steam it lightly for three minutes, you lose very little.” While Dolins may discredit the premise of a raw diet, she doesn’t dismiss the good feeling people say they have on a raw diet. “When we cut sugars or processed foods out, we feel better. It usually has to do with what they are no longer eating that was causing inflammation. Sugar, red meat, a lot of processed meat can cause inflammation. But it doesn’t mean everything you eat has to be raw.” The diet’s popularity, she says, likely has to do with offering a very defined alternative to processed foods. “People have a hard time modifying their diets. They often do better when it’s black and white—that’s the appeal. It is somehow easier if I say, ‘Everything I eat will be in a raw state so I will avoid processed food.’ ” Dolins believes that we should eat fewer processed and animal-based foods, and more fresh, plant-based foods. But, she says, “The more rigid one is about the diet, the more one develops a less healthful relationship with food. Too many rules and regulations are not healthy.”

BLACK & WHITE The rigidity of the raw diet can make it hard to sustain. Although it seems simple in nature, it can be very time consuming to prepare raw foods, especially if you want the kind of variety Asher enjoys. This is the challenge he faces as a raw food chef. “It requires a lot of prep. To do a dehydrated eggplant or flaxseed crackers, it takes 14 hours of dehydrating. It’s not the kind of a thing you decide on a whim. You need to start a raw vegan lasagna 48 hours ahead of time.” Longtime best-selling raw food author Ani Phyo finds herself agreeing with Dolins. She notes that when you eliminate the toxins, nutritional stress and hard work, your digestive system has to endure with processed foods, you have more energy and can be stronger to take on more environmental or emotional stress. “It’s a powerful and very clean diet. It can give you that boost of immunity, health or mental clarity.” But for her personal purposes, Phyo has moved away from an exclusively raw diet. As a Southern California powerlifting champion, Phyo says raw food still is her base philosophy, but over time she has gone from following a 100 percent raw diet, to about a 70/30 mix of raw and cooked foods, with some eggs or meat for protein. She still focuses on nonprocessed, clean and fresh ingredients, but she might sauté her veggies or cook an egg. “Not everyone needs a lot of protein. I need a lot because I’m an athlete. We need it to keep from

2. I WON’T BE ABLE TO GET ENOUGH PROTEIN. According to the U.S. Recommended Daily Intake of protein, a 140-pound woman should aim for 51 grams of protein a day, while a 190-pound man should take in 69 grams. If they exercise, that same 140-pound woman now needs approximately 76–89 grams of protein per day, and that 190-pound man needs 104–121 grams, says nutritionist and author Patricia Bannan, M.S., R.D.N. Ways to get protein include raw protein powders, raw meat (if you’re up for it) and nuts, which can be integrated into meals—blended and made into cheese, used on a salad or blended with water to make nut milk. But keep in mind, nuts are also high in calories. In addition to nuts, leafy green vegetables also provide protein, Cohen says. And although nuts and veggies may have less overall protein than meat, it is more readily available for your body to digest. This, Cohen says, is partly why a raw diet can be energizing: Your body isn’t working hard to digest foods, which can leave you feeling tired and sluggish. 3. YOU ONLY EAT LEAFY GREENS AND DRINK SMOOTHIES. In reality, raw recipes abound. You make soups, from gazpacho to Vietnamese pho. With the dehydrator, Cohen makes flaxseed crackers, plus flatbreads or raw pizzas. She blends nuts to make cheeselike spreads. Cacao can be mixed with dates to make chocolate-like desserts. “I just made an unbelievable cheesecake and nobody knew it was raw,” Cohen says.

Summer 2014 / Optimum Wellness




MOCK SALMON Place the following ingredients in a blender, and blend until smooth: 2 cups walnuts 2 stalks celery 1 scallion 1 red bell pepper Pinch of sea salt

injuring ourselves. But to get 24 grams of protein from nuts, you have to eat a lot, which is a lot of calories. If someone has a weight issue, they won’t be able to eat enough nuts.” To stay within her powerlifting weight class, Phyo turned to using raw protein powders, but she said protein powders are still processed, and they can be hard on your digestive system. She decided she would prefer to eat clean and lean proteins such as eggs or bison. “Everyone is different. There are definitely people who have been 100 percent raw for decades. I am starting to position it as a great detox tool for a couple of weeks, to eliminate the dairy and processed food. It’s wonderful for that.”



Blend together: 2 cups raisins 2 cups walnuts

These sentiments are not lost on Cohen. She knows raw food is not a sustainable diet for everyone. Still, she recommends trying the diet at least for a short period of time. Doing so, she says, can bring more awareness to what you eat from day to day. “It can really wake you up to how badly you were eating or what you were missing. Go raw for a month, even if you don’t plan on doing it for the rest of your life. Within a week, you feel like you need less sleep, you have more

Form the mix into a circle and pat it down well until it is an inch thick. Then blend together: 1 cup of dates 1 tablespoon lemon juice Spread on top of the raisinwalnut mix, like a frosting.

Summer 2015 2015 / Optimum / Optimum Wellness Wellness 36 Spring

energy, and when you go back to eating cooked food, you have some sort of a gauge. Sometimes we don’t realize how bad we’re feeling.” For someone trying it for the first time, Cohen recommends picking a recipe or two to make and keeping it simple. “There is a learning curve, and if you think you need to do breakfast, lunch and dinner gourmet, you’ll get overwhelmed.” She recommends keeping dried products in glass jars in the kitchen, including nuts, seeds and dried fruit. These can be bought in bulk or packaged form. Cohen says smoothies with greens, fruits and a frozen banana are very easy to make. Or, for breakfast, try soaking raw oats overnight; then in the morning add some coconut oil and sea salt with cinnamon and raisins. For lunch or dinner, Cohen says she likes to eat “mock salmon,” a pink-colored protein dip that goes well on salads or crackers, or rolled into lettuce leaves. Then for dessert, she makes date nut torte. Once you get the hang of it, she says, “You can mimic all the things you used to eat.” Try spiral-cut zucchini in place of angel hair pasta, for instance, or use nuts to make cheese. “People think they will never eat their favorite foods. You can. It’s different, but it’s good.”


That’s amore. Raw food pizza of veggies on dried shortcakes.

Sprouted Quinoa Cherry And Feta Salad Ingredients

SPROUTED Sprouting is an age old tradition dating back over 5,000 years.

1 cup uncooked truRoots® Organic Sprouted Quinoa, (4 cups cooked) 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil 2 tbsps. Santa Cruz Organic® Pure Lemon Juice 3 tbsps. honey 1/2 tsp. ground thyme

Sprouting breaks down the protective coating on beans and grains to help unlock nutrients. Sprouted grains cook more quickly than traditional grains.

1/2 cup coarsely chopped dried cherries 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese 1/2 cup coarsely chopped pecans

Create exciting and nutritious meals conveniently with truRoots sprouted beans, grains, and rice.

2 tbsps. minced fresh parsley


Salt and Pepper to taste 8 radicchio leaves Directions COOK quinoa according to package directions. Cool to room temperature. Fluff with fork. WHISK together oil, lemon juice, honey and thyme in large bowl. Add 4 cups cooked quinoa, dried cherries, cheese, pecans and parsley to bowl. Stir to combine. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve salad in radicchio leaves. Chill.



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Raw Dessert Recipes From Ani’s Raw Food Detox (Da Capo, 2012) by Ani Phyo

Fudge Brownies with Fresh Berries I love raw desserts because they are guilt-free and healthy. I recommend doubling up on this recipe so you have some on hand when you’re in need of a quick snack or dessert fix. 1 cup dry walnuts ¼ cup cacao powder or carob powder Pinch of sea salt 1/3 cup medjool dates, pitted ½ cup fresh raspberries or strawberries Super Power Pack: ¼ teaspoon maca powder, to taste Combine walnuts, cacao powder, salt and maca, if using, in food processor. Pulse into medium pieces. Use some of this mix to powder the bottom of a baking pan. Add dates, and pulse to mix well. Batter should stick together when squeezed into a ball. If it’s too loose, add a few more sticky dates or a splash of filtered water to bind it together. If it’s too sticky, add a few more crushed, dry walnuts. Scoop brownie mix into the powdered baking pan, and flatten it to about ½-inch to ¾-inch thick by pressing lightly. Cut it into squares. To serve, place brownie on serving dish and top with berries. Brownies will keep for a few weeks or longer in the fridge when stored in a sealed container separate from the berries.

Summer 2015 2015 / Optimum / Optimum Wellness Wellness 38 Spring

Mango Pecan Cobbler FILLING 6 cups mango, from about 5–6 ripe mangoes Peel mangoes; cut into 2-inch dice. Set aside. PECAN COBBLER CRUST 3 cups pecans 1 vanilla bean, scraped, or 1 tablespoon alcohol-free vanilla extract 3/4 teaspoon sea salt 3/4 cup pitted medjool dates, packed 1–2 tablespoons coconut oil, as desired

Slightly chop the pecans in a food processor. Add vanilla and salt. Then add dates, and process until mixed well. Finally, add coconut oil. Process until mixed well. Sprinkle half of cobbler crust on the bottom of a 9-inch pie dish. Next, top crust with mango. Finally, top mango with remaining cobbler crust, and pack down slightly. This will keep in the fridge for up to 3–4 days.


Makes 4 servings


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UNSTABLE SURFACES OR UNSTABLE LOADS? EITHER WAY, FUNCTIONAL TRAINING MAY BE THE SMARTEST FITNESS APPROACH ON OFFER. BY KELLEE KATAGI JUST A FEW DECADES AGO, functional training was more of a medical concept than a fitness method. Physical and occupational therapists prescribed exercises to injured patients or elderly people to help them resume everyday tasks. The concept spilled into the fitness arena as therapists worked with injured athletes to return them to the demands of their particular sport, whether a basketball player’s vertical leap or a golfer’s rotational swing. Soon, coaches and trainers were using the same concepts with healthy athletes to improve performance. But because balance and core stability are a vital part of nearly any action we do, it wasn’t long before functional training became synonymous with exercises performed on unstable surfaces— Swiss balls, Bosu trainers, wobble boards and the like—which were seen as a superior way to improve balance and activate core muscles. This prompted a flurry of research into this training method, and scientists eventually concluded that unstable surfaces limit how heavy a load people can handle. Many athletic trainers took that to mean unstable surfaces are best confined to the rehab arena, and thus, the Swiss ball’s glory days came to an end. So where does that leave us now? With a lot of

questions about functional training. Even so, it’s still the most effective way for anyone to exercise. Here we define and demystify functional fitness, and coach you on the best way to employ it, regardless of your athletic or fitness goals. A DEFINITIVE DEFINITION At its core, functional training is straightforward: It simply means exercising to prepare your body to perform a specific task, whether it be sprinting a certain distance, tackling a wide receiver, shoveling snow or simply standing up off the floor. And that’s where confusion enters: Functional training is different for every person, and for every action you perform. “In tennis or soccer, you need to teach your body to perform explosive, powerful movements,” says David Behm, Ph.D., exercise physiologist, professor and researcher at the Memorial University of Newfoundland. “If you’re a dog walker, you can move a lot more slowly.” That said, there are four basic functional-fitness principles to keep in mind whether you’re training for a marathon or for keeping up with your kids at the park. Incorporate these concepts into any fitness regimen, and you’re guaranteed to make it more efficient and, ultimately, more effective.


solely on muscles or movements used in your sport, and it’s easy to get out of balance and invite injury. Work opposing muscle groups (back and chest, quads and hamstrings, biceps and triceps, for example) equally, as well as the left and right sides of your body, regardless of the demands of your target activity. Also, every workout regimen should include cardio, muscle strength and endurance, and flexibility components, says exercise physiologist David Behm.


move 1. MASTER THE MECHANICS. Functional fitness reinforces the natural movement of the body and unlocks its potential. But first you have to understand how the body should actually move, says Josh Henkin, C.S.C.S., owner of Ultimate Sandbag Training and a strength coach with 20-plus years of experience. “Whether you’re an elite athlete or an everyday person, functional training is philosophically the same,” he explains. “It’s a fallacy that athletes know how to move correctly. Often the reason they have injuries is because they’ve never been taught to move well. And people who are training for everyday health need proper movement mechanics, too. Once they have that, they can add progressions that achieve the specific outcomes they desire.” Take action: Before you dive into a functional-training program, book a session with a certified personal trainer who can assess your knowledge of proper movement patterns.

3. INTEGRATE, DON’T ISOLATE. Functional training experts advocate compound-joint movements (say, a chin-up) over single-joint ones (a biceps curl). “Very few things we do in our lives are isolated movements,” Behm says. “Compound-joint exercises improve balance and coordination, and help you transfer the skills you gain to everyday life.” To explain why, Henkin again points to the central nervous system. For example, he says, studies show that the quadriceps function differently in a leg extension (an isolated exercise) than they do in an integrated exercise like a squat, which better mimics everyday movement. Take action: Seek out compound-joint exercises to replace any single-joint movements in your routine. Again, a trainer can help with this.

2. MIMIC THE MOTIONS. Functional fitness exercises are ones that imitate how you will actually move, whether in a particular sport or in everyday life, Behm says. For example, a tennis player and a snow shoveler— who both need to generate power while standing up and rotating their bodies—might incorporate explosive “wood chop” exercises into their strength routines, while a hiker might emphasize stair workouts. This develops not just strength and power, but also your brain and your reflexes. “The nervous system has to be trained just as the muscles do,” Henkin says.

4. MAP OUT PROGRESSIONS. Once you’ve mastered basic movements, you need to challenge your body with exercise progressions. In traditional training, this usually means greater volume, load (weight) or intensity. But this is what puts the “fun” in functional fitness: Progressions often experiment with movement in different planes (front to back, up and down, side to side, rotational) and with a variety of surfaces or loads. Popular progression tools include unstable surfaces—such as sand, Swiss balls and Bosu balls—and unstable loads like sandbags, buckets of water and suspension-training systems such as TRX. The key idea here: All of these methods have merit, but they tend to work best when used as part of a broader training plan.

Take action: List the major motions and physiological demands of your sport or activity, and determine how best to mimic those actions.

Take action: See “Tool Talk” to discern which of these training methods best fit into your routine.


UNSTABLE LOADS EXAMPLES: BAG OF SAND OR RICE, WATER, SHOVELFUL OF DIRT, SUSPENSION SYSTEM SCIENCE SAYS: • Use unstable loads (except suspension training) as a progression after you’ve mastered similar movements with stable loads, because they require more core activation and joint stability, Behm says. • No two reps are the same, which better mimics real-life

42 Summer 2015 / Optimum Wellness

UNSTABLE SURFACES activity. But beware: It can also increase chance of injury. • Few studies exist examining the merit of unstable loads such as sandbags or water; expect more as these methods grow in popularity.

BEST FOR: • Training for everyday tasks like shoveling snow or lifting kids • Relieving boredom with traditional workouts • Activating core muscles using lighter loads

EXAMPLES: SWISS BALL, BOSU, BALANCE BOARD, SAND SCIENCE SAYS: • The amount of weight you can handle drops about 30 percent when you’re on an unstable surface, so stable surfaces are better for boosting maximum strength. • For an equal load, coremuscle activation is higher on an unstable surface, studies show. To boost it on a stable

surface, you have to increase the load. • Unstable surfaces improve balance, which can also make you stronger, researchers have found.

BEST FOR: • Rehabbing injuries • Training for activities on unstable surfaces like snow, water or sand • Improving balance • Activating core muscles using lighter loads


Energy of the Ancients

MACA HAS FUELED ANDEAN CULTURES FOR CENTURIES. NOW IT CAN DO THE SAME FOR YOU. USE IT FOR: Energy, exercise endurance, positive mood, brain function, sexual function, fertility, bone health THE SCIENCE: Studies abound verifying the myriad benefits of maca. One oft-cited study from the Journal of Ethnopharmacology found that cyclists who took maca for two weeks improved cycling timetrial performance and had greater sexual desire than when taking a placebo. Several more recent studies tout maca’s ability to battle depression and improve cognitive performance.

HOW TO TAKE IT: Andean people eat the root as Americans would a potato, but for a supplement it’s ground into a powder. The taste is slightly bitter, but it blends well into smoothies, nut butters, fruit juices, yogurt, soups and baked goods. Aim for at least 15 grams per day and much more if you’d like—higher doses don’t seem to cause any negative effects. Powders come in two forms: raw or gelatinized (heated to remove starch). Raw maca preserves all of its nutrients but can cause digestive distress in some people; plus, a few small studies suggest that the heated maca is more readily absorbed by the body and therefore more effective.


WHAT IS IT? Also called Peruvian ginseng, maca is a cruciferous root vegetable indigenous to the Andes Mountains. Andean cultures have used it medicinally for hundreds, perhaps even thousands, of years. It’s nutritionally well-rounded, providing a great blend of both carbs and protein, as well as B vitamins and vitamin C, and minerals such as calcium, iron, iodine and potassium.


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46 Summer 2015 / Optimum Wellness

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WHEN IT COMES TO DAILY dietary supplements, when you take them is just as important as which ones you take. Sure, you can pop a multivitamin every morning and call it good. But spreading your vitamins and supplements throughout the day and taking them around meals ensures that you get the full benefit of each. Here is a simple guide to which supplements you should consider taking when, to keep you running strong all day long.

MORNING PROBIOTICS If you’re not a fan of yogurt for breakfast, consider starting your day with a probiotic supplement to get your intestinal tract, well, on track. Most probiotic supplements are best taken before eating, when your stomach is less active. Benefits: Immune and digestive support. Plus, probiotics improve absorption, increasing the nutrient benefit of foods you eat the rest of the day. Try: Jarro-Dophilus EPS; an enteric coating on the capsule protects the cultures from stomach acids. MULTIVITAMIN Unless you follow a strict meal plan, you’re probably missing some essential vitamins and minerals in your diet. Multivitamins—especially those formulated for your specific needs, whether you’re pregnant, of a certain age, or have certain allergies or deficiencies—can ensure you get as close to 100 percent of your Recommended Daily Intake as possible. Some multis can cause mild stomach upset, so take them with food. To enhance the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins like A and E, make sure your breakfast includes some oil; healthy choices include avocado, hemp oil, nuts or eggs. Benefits: Covers gaps in daily nutrition; provides an array of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants you don’t always get from food Try: Nature’s Way Alive! Multi-Vitamin; it doesn’t contain any artificial colors, flavors or preservatives.


MIDDAY OMEGA-3 Omega-3 (a type of essential fatty acid) typically comes from fish, seafood or seaweed oils, and has been linked to myriad benefits such as cardiovascular health, reduced joint stiffness and depression, and improved cognition. Plenty of doctors recommend supplementing with it, especially if you don’t eat a lot of seafood. Omega-3 can cause nausea and gastric distress if consumed on an empty stomach, so take it with a primary meal. Lunch, when your stomach is less likely to be sensitive, is better than breakfast. Benefits: Anti-inflammatory action, joint health, cardiovascular health, mood support Try: Nordic Naturals Omega-3 or Nordic Naturals Ultimate Omega; Nordic Naturals is well reputed for its high-quality fish oil products and sustainability practices.

CALCIUM Calcium isn’t just for kids. Even grown-ups need plenty, especially post-menopausal women whose risk for osteoporosis increases with age. Milk, yogurt and cheese pack a ton of calcium but also a lot of fat, so supplementing can be a smart move for those watching their waistlines. Calcium is best absorbed in divided doses of 500 mg or less, so take your first dose at lunch, followed by a second dose at dinner. Bonus: Take it with vitamin D to improve its absorption into the body. Benefits: bone health, nervous system support Try: Jarrow Bone-Up; combines calcium with vitamins D and K to improve absorption. FIBER Fiber should be taken separately from other supplements because it can interfere with their absorption, so midafternoon is a good time. You’ll feel more full and less inclined to snack. Benefits: Promotes digestive regularity and healthy blood lipid levels Try: Renew Life FiberSmart; the powder form (also available in a capsule) gives you a break from all the pill swallowing. VITAMIN B12 If you feel sluggish or out of focus in the afternoons, resist the urge to pour yourself a cup of joe and reach for the B12 instead. A lack of this B vitamin can cause fatigue and mood fluctuations. Vitamin B12 is best absorbed when your stomach is not super-full, so take it between meals. Taken midafternoon, it also helps convert lunch carbs and fats into energy. Benefits: Energy production, nervous system support, hormonal regulation Try: Jarrow Methyl B-12; the methylated form of B vitamins absorbs more efficiently as it does not need to be converted by the liver.






DIGESTIVE ENZYMES Enzymes are best taken with dinner—especially if you eat late—to promote complete digestion before bed and ensure more restful sleep. Benefits: Maximize digestion, prevent gastric distress, increase nutrient absorption Try: Enzymedica Digest Gold or Enzymedica Digest Gold + Probiotics; both products offer full spectrum support through the whole digestive tract.

All supplements referenced in the magazine are available in King Soopers & City Market Optimum Wellness Centers. See page 50 for a complete list of locations.

CALCIUM Take your second dose of the day with dinner to promote absorption. Taken in the evening, calcium in combination with magnesium can relax the muscles and lead to sound sleep. Benefits: Encourages muscle relaxation, bone health Try: Jarrow Bone-Up MAGNESIUM Taken right before bed, magnesium calms the mind and nervous system in preparation for sleep. It can also encourage bowel regularity. Benefits: Relaxes muscles, supports the nervous system, promotes bone and heart health, and regularity. Try: Natural Vitality CALM; the number one selling magnesium supplement tastes great and is easy to use.


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



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Summer 2015 | volume 03 issue 03

PUBLISHER Deborah Juris


ADVERTISING SALES Deborah Juris, Sue Sheerin

EDITOR Brendan Harrington

CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Berne Broudy, Courtney Collado, Kellee Katagi, Rhea Maze, Rebecca Olgeirson



CONTRIBUTING ARTISTS Aaron Colussi, Brian Love, Julia Vandenoever



On the importance of self-care, time with your kids, and experimenting in your own epic-living laboratory. Create a practice for self-care. A lot of folks view self-care as selfish, and don’t put themselves first on their to-do list. But your own self-care is truly a selfless act of social activism. You can serve other people at a higher level when you have the energy, the clarity, the motivation. You generate energy around you. People feel it. Summer is a great time to reinvent ourselves. If you’ve been pressed all winter saying, “I can’t find time to do the things I want to do,” now we’ve gained a couple of hours to fit in windows for wellness. And we should really leverage that. Personal fulfillment usually boils down to taking action. Every day you get the opportunity to show up, to be different, to be in your own epic-living laboratory to build your confidence and make you feel like you’re most alive. You never eat alone. What you put in your body will come out in optimism or pessimism, energy or lethargy, compassion or anger. Our diets are a way of life. Consciously consume calories that will help you deliver on what you want to create. Be the sermon, not the preacher. The last thing my teenagers want is to hear me preach about eating well and exercising. Kids are wonderfully open and accepting to seeing models of health, happiness and wholeness.

We always say to our kids at night, “I’m proud of you.” But wouldn’t it be wonderful to say it to yourself, too? I’m becoming less and less afraid of failing. In order to express all that I want to be and do, I have to fail more often. And I’m really OK with that.

Dr. James Rouse has a doctorate in naturopathic medicine. He is an inspirational speaker, personal coach and author. His latest book, Think Eat Move Thrive: The Practice for an Awesome Life is available at


Master the art of single-tasking. Don’t focus on how much time you have with your kids, but in the time you do have, do everything you can to be present. When you’re with your child, be with your child. Don’t be with your phone or a screen. Just be there.

52 Summer 2015 / Optimum Wellness

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Optimum Wellness Summer 2015  
Optimum Wellness Summer 2015  

-We're crushing on BERRIES! -Build a better burger with our grilling makeover. -Snack Smarter: 5 healthy chip alternatives. -Train for YOU l...