Happy to be a recovered vegetarian

It was 1992, I was twelve years old and had seen a 60 Minutes episode about how veal is made. I was disgusted and saddened by the torture used to “raise” veal. I decided I would never eat meat again.
It’s 2012 and three weeks ago I ate my first piece of grass fed beef tenderloin. Last week I prepared ground grass fed beef liver meatballs. Today I am going to make bone stock from grass fed humanily raised veal bones.
The change began when I started reading Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon. After which, I started researching proper nutrition. Learning about The Weston A Price Foundation and other natural and real foods helped me see the importance of eating meat. I read over and over about animal fats and proteins, B vitamins…especially B12…being important for proper brain function, sleep and absorption of essential vitamins and minerals.
I am feeling like a new person. My mind is clear and my insomnia is gone. I never expected to be able to sleep 8 or 9 hours a night. I feel stronger physically and mentally and have a ton of energy. I have also stopped taking all of my medications. Goodbye anti-depressants, migraine medication, anti-anxieties and more!
Life is good when you can treat your illnesses with food. Even more so when it’s meatballs 🙂

Beef Liver Meatballs

1 pound grass fed beef (ground)
1/4 pound grass fed beef liver (ground)
2-3 sprigs fresh organic oregano
1-2 sprigs fresh organic parsley
2-3 cloves fresh organic garlic
1/2 organic yellow onion
1/2 cup sourdough bread crumbs
Sea salt and pepper to taste
Organic olive oil

Chop garlic and onions and let stand for 8-10 minutes to release oils. Chop herbs finely mix with onions and garlic. In a bowl mix all ingredients together and let stand for 5-7 minutes. Form balls, about the size of a golf ball and place on a lined sheet pan.
in a large frying pan, add a small amount of olive oil to just cover the pan and lighty brown all sides of the balls and move to a clean sheet pan.
I like to finish my meatballs in a tomato sauce on the stove top. You can also finish them in a covered casserole dish in the oven at 375 degrees for about 25-30 minutes.

The most important part of cooking is to stay away from denatured foods and additives for fresh and alive real foods.

2011-12-06 18.32.12

Nutrient Dense Salad Dressing

I stopped eating store bought salad dressing as soon as I started following the WAPF standards for nutrition. I read the labels on the back of the bottles and was only a little shocked at the amount of unnecessary ingredients. MSG is in many of them, organic ones still had corn, canola or vegetable oils, ingredients for preservation and more. Those ingredients did not sit well with me.

I started making fresh salad dressing. Not only is it more delicious than store bought, its super nutritious too. Fortifying my dressing with freshly ground spices, chopped herbs and veggies, raw vinegar, and cold or expeller pressed oils. Stay away from anything that is refined. Most oils in the market have been treated with heat, which destroys the enzymes. Look carefully for oils which have not been refined (heat treated). I find that unrefined sunflower oil gives most dressings a lovely flavor.

Try this recipe on a garden salad. You won regret it!

Coconut Sunflower Dressing

1/2 cup raw coconut vinegar
1/2 cup unrefined, expeller pressed sunflower oil
2 cloves organic garlic
2 stems organic parsley
1 organic shallot (1/2 organic red or yellow onion)
Fresh ground black peppercorn and Celtic sea salt to taste

Chop garlic, shallot or onion and parsley very finely. Pour vinegar in small bowl. Slowly pour oil in a stream while whisking until all oil has been incorporated. Add the remaining ingredients and serve over any type of raw garden salad.

For those who want to purchase my homemade nutrient dense salad dressings, I will have them in my web store soon! Along with other nutrient dense foods to supplement your home cooking.

Happy eating!

milk

The raw milk debate

It’s been a wonderful week! Not because of the holidays, gifts or seeing friends and family. It is because I have been consuming raw milk. Exactly the way it is when it comes out of the cow. Its a beautiful farm in Foxboro, MA where the cows graze on green grass during the nice months and locally grown hay during the months when green grass is not available.

There seems to be a large portion of people who say they are lactose-intolerant. If you do, give cultured milks a chance. Lactobacilli, also known as probiotics, improve intestinal cultural ecology. Helping digest and absorb the nutrition in milk. Regular consumption will help lower cholesterol and protect against bone loss. Beneficial bacteria and lactic acid protect against infectious illness and disease, and aid in the digestion of all we eat. Especially grains, which are soaked in whey for many hours before cooking.

Milk and cultured milk products are generally consumed by people around the world at every meal. Without pasteurization or refrigeration, milk will sour and separate. This is because the bacteria begin breaking down the milk sugar (lactose) and milk protein (casein) to produce enough lactic acid to inactivate putrefying bacteria. This protects it from spoilage. Casein is the most difficult protein to digest.

In the west, we know of yogurt, buttermilk and sour cream (creme fraiche) to add to our meals for flavor, texture and the health benefits. traditional societies insist on giving the sick, aged and nursing mothers lacto-fermented milk products, beverages and vegetables. Also both vitamin B and C increase during fermentation.

When dairy products have been pasteurized or heated in ways that destroy enzyme activity, have significant levels of enzymes that contribute to the difficult digestion of lactose in the intestine. When milk processors make low fat milk, they remove the fat, pasteurize and then add unnatural vitamins to “help” us, supress odr and restore tastw. This process makes milk very difficult to digest and does provide any nourishment. Synthetic vitamin D2 or D3 is added and is toxic and linked to heart disease. Homogenization has also been linked to heart disease. Cheeses made from raw milk contain a full complement of enzymes and are more easily digested than cheeses made from pasteurized milk. Processed cheeses with emulsifiers, extenders, phosphates and hydrogenated oils should be strictly avoided. Milk found in the supermarket come from cows that have been genetically engineered to produce more milk. Which is present in the milk as high levels of bovine growth hormones. Which can result in growth abnormalities. Another issue with dairy methods today is the feeding of high protein soybean meal to the cows. Little has been researched on what problems this may cause. Other forms of soy have been found to be very damaging to the human body. Properly fed cows (green grass) are rich in CLA (conjugated linoleic acid), vitamins and minerals.

We were taught that the pasteurization is beneficial to protect ourselves against infectious diseases. Stainless steel tanks, milking machines, efficient packaging and distributing, make pasteurization completely unnecessary for sanitation purposes. In recent decades, all outbreaks of salmonella have been in pasteurized milk. Raw milk contains lactic-acid producing bacteria that help protect against pathogens. Pasteurization destroys these helpful organisms. Heat will also alter the amino acids, making the proteins less available and the deconstruction of vitamins. B12 is completely destroyed, which is needed for healthy blood and nervous systems. Calcium, chloride, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, sodium and sulfur availability is reduced from pasteurization. The test for successful pasteurization is the absence of enzymes. These enzymes help the body assimilate all body building factors, like calcium. Osteoporosis may be a cause of drinking pasteurized milk. Over time, raw milk will sour and still be edible. Where as pasteurized milk will putrefy. Lipase, in raw milk, helps digest and utilize butterfat, helping with weight loss.
It is extremely difficult to purchase raw milk in the United States. It is federally illegal and only available from a few farms around the country.

If you can not find good quality raw milk from pastures cows, limit your milk consumption to cultured milk, buttermilk, whole milk yogurt, butter and raw cheeses.
Check out www.realmilk.com for a list of raw milk and milk products from pasture-fed animals.

grass-fed-beef

Fats and Heart Disease

It takes some faith to change the way you eat. I like to get my information from multiple sources. Healthcare professionals, for decades, have told us what and how to eat, drink and play. I believe most of us have been misinformed.
I am going to use an example that is hitting very close to home right now. My father recently had a heart attack and was told all the usual stuff about not eating animal fats, not to eat anything that is white (rice, potatoes, milk, salt). Food processing is the largest industry in the country. There are many powerful people to dictate what is recommended to us. In 1980 it was suggested one cup of corn oil and a Coca-Cola a day to prevent heart disease. These were approved by the American Heart Association. There are hundreds of reports just as outrageous as this by many of the organizations we trust to give us health information. It makes me sad to know that the majority of people in the United States believe what we are told, just as I did, because we are told by a “trusted” healthcare professional.
After reading some of these things I started to do more research and found that nearly every large food processor and healthcare association have made some really ridiculous claims about products. If we look outside of the US, for example, France. They have one of the lowest rates of coronary heart disease then any other western country. Though their diet is full of butter, eggs, cheese, cream, liver and meats.
Saturated fatty acids play a vital role in the health of our bones, cell membranes, immune system and liver function. Cholesterol acts as a precursor to the hormones that help us deal with stress, produce gender based hormones, serotonin and vitamin D. There are many vitamins and minerals that require fats to provide nourishment. Actually, vitamin A is easily absorbed from butter then any other source. And only in large amounts when the butter comes from cows eating rapidly growing green grass. Foods that are grass-fed are hip now. For good reason. I have been eating grass-fed yogurt, eggs, butter and meats. Not only is the butter deep yellow and taste fantastic, but I feel my body absorb the vitamins. It might sound crazy…but if you try t you will feel it too. I am using Organic Valley’s Pasture Butter. A slice of sourdough bread with a pat of that butter is more than enough for a snack. It will hold me over for hours, if I needed it to. On top of that, my skin has become smoother and I have less breakouts since eating pasture butter and eggs. Sure, it’s 5 or $6 for a dozen eggs and $6 for a pound of butter, but I eat one egg now, instead of two. I feel completely nourished with a smoothie and one egg (maybe topped with raw cheddar cheese). Raw (unpasteurized) milk and milk products is something I will get into soon.
I enjoy challenging everything I was taught about nutrition. It’s a lot of research, but damn is it exciting to cook meals that nourish my friends and family.