Eat Real Food (IEP) (Additional PLUS Reading Materials)

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Eat Real Food (IEP) (Additional PLUS Reading Materials)

  1. 1. Eat Real Food: Winter Nutrition by Nishanga Bliss, L.Ac. Ah, winter! It seems to really hit only after the holidays, when the long nights of January march on and the credit card bills come due. The sage consolidates energy in winter, becoming more internally focused, quieter, and listening more. Cooking more, too: long simmered soups and stews, roasting, baking, even a little deep frying (in fresh oil with a high saturated fat content, like lard or coconut oil, of course) are all appropriate to warm our bodies in wintertime.Traditional Asian medicines teach that winter is the time when the energy of the kidneyspredominates and it is beneficial to nurture these organs. The kidneys are known not only togovern urination but to be the root and foundation of the body’s energy, showing that theancients understood the functioning of the endocrine system and recognizedthe location of the adrenals on top of the kidneys. Kidney energy governsmetabolism, reproduction, development, and aging, and weak kidney energyoften shows in low back and knee pain, bone problems, frequent urination,and fear. Kidney nourishing foods include all beans (even string beans!),especially those dark in color, seaweed, parsley, millet, wild rice and otherdark grains, walnuts, black sesame seeds, yams, organ meats (only from sustainably raisedanimals, of course), oysters, clams, crab, lobster, and pork.The kidney energy governs the deepest forms of internal fire and water in the body. If ourinternal fire, known as kidney yang, is weakened by chronic stress, overwork, or aging,symptoms such as coldness, pallor, low back and knee pain, impotence/infertility, frequenturination, low libido, edema or asthma might ensue. Kidney fire naturally declines with age, and traditional medicines have many remedies. Foods which nurture the yang include warm spices such as cloves, fenugreek, fennel, anise, black pepper, ginger, cinnamon, rosemary, dill, caraway and cumin, as well as black and aduki beans, lentils, oats, spelt, sweet brown rice and quinoa, citrus peel, dates, cherries and raspberries, walnuts, parsnips, parsley, mustard greens, winter squash, cabbage, kale, onions, garlic, leeks and scallions. Animal foods are powerful yang tonics and people with yang weakness should eat 1-3 servings ofhigh quality animal foods a day, including organic or pastured chicken, organ meats (especiallykidneys), lobster or crab, shrimp, wild salmon, trout and lamb.Our deepest internal water, our yin, can also become depleted by stress, overwork and aging.When our internal coolant gets depleted, we may experience dizziness, ringing in the ears,dry mouth and throat, thirst, low back pain, night sweats, menstrual irregularities, agitation,irritation, nervousness, insecurity and fear. Wheat and wheat germ, bulgur, tempeh, millet,barley, rice and amaranth, beans, asparagus, eggplant, potatoes, and beets, seaweeds, rawcheese, goat cheese and cultured organic dairy products such as yogurt and kefir, shellfish, 1
  2. 2. sardines, organic or pastured eggs, duck, pork, organ meats, and fruit such as apples, berries,lemons, grapes, mulberries and melon are all wonderful kidney yin foods. One should avoid toomany warming spices, excessive exercise (especially Bikram yoga!), and stimulants.An even more esoteric, yet fundamental, aspect of the kidney energy is the storage of the jing.The jing is our deepest essence, akin to the energy savings account of the body. The quality andquantity of our jing determines our health, lifespan and aging process. Our daily energy is drawnfrom the air we breathe, the food we eat, and, when these are insufficient for our needs, from ourreserves of jing. Jing is depleted by stress, fear, overwork, excessive ejaculation or childbearing,toxin exposure, and excessive sweets or protein in the diet. Jing cannot be replaced, but it can be enhanced through meditation, tai qi, qi gong and yoga, and by eating certain foods, many of which are high in essential fatty acids, B12, and vitamins A and D. These include chlorella, spirulina, blue-green algae, barley and wheat grass, fish, liver, cod liver oil, kidney, bone and marrow and the broth made from these, placenta, almonds, raw milk and cheese, ghee, nettles, royal jelly, bee pollen, chicken, mussels, and herbs such as gouji berries, tu ci zi, shu di huang, gui ban, and lu rong (ask your herbalist about these!). Of course, only high-quality, organic or pastured substances will truly nourish the jing. In addition, appropriate jing tonics should be selected based on your constitution and energetic patterns.As the baby boomers age, science has brought an intense focus to the aging process. Twodominant theories of the science of aging are oxidation and carmelization. Oxidation is likelythe more familiar of the two, and it is simply the chemists’ term for removing electrons from anion or molecule. Living systems have antioxidants to protect themselves from oxidative damage,done by solar radiation, for example. Oxidative stress is the total burden placed on living thingsby the production of free radicals, or oxidizing molecules, created by both normal metabolismand environmental exposures to toxins, such as tobacco smoke. We have several defensivesystems in place to defend against oxidative stress, and, as Andrew Weil puts it in his bookHealthy Aging “a good case can be make that health depends on a balance between oxidativestress and antioxidant defenses.”So how do we protect ourselves against oxidative stress? Minimize drug, chemical and toxinexposure in general and in the diet in particular, avoid rancid oils (all partially hydrogenatedvegetable oils, commercial chemically processed oils, oils that have been heated too high, mostpackaged and processed foods), and seek out sources of antioxidants in the diet. Yes, you knowabout blueberries, but you might be surprised that the number one source of antioxidants in theAmerican diet is coffee. Yup, even decaf has lots more antioxidants than almost any other food.Tea does, too, black or green, with white tea at the top of the list. Other common foods high inantioxidant power include dried beans, prunes, strawberries, apples and plums. Vitamin E is thepremier antioxidant of the oils, so fresh nuts and cold-pressed oils are good sources, as is freshlyground wheat, and animal products from animals fed and finished on grass. How about takingantioxidant pills? Most studies have not shown nearly as much protective power as eating ananti-oxidant rich diet. Interestingly, many of the TCM remedies for kidney energy are alsosubstances high in antioxidants.2
  3. 3. What about carmelization? Yes, it is the same process you employ in cooking when youcarmelize onions, for example—it’s an interaction between sugar and protein exposed to heatwhich produces browning and lovely flavors in food. These reactions happenin our bodies all the time, but they are accelerated in diabetics, who often haveperiods of high blood sugar. A number of common age-related diseases areaccelerated in diabetics, like cataracts and atherosclerosis, often as a result ofglycation, a carmelizing-type reaction between glucose and protein. Manyresearchers today believe that aging is the result of the slow browning andcarmelization of our tissues. Weil and others suggest that eating in a way that supports steadymoderate blood sugar may be a useful long-term way to prevent diabetes, weight gain, heartdisease and many other chronic disorders that can cause illness and shorten the lifespan. TCMpractitioners warn us, as well, that too much of the sweet flavor can harm the kidneys andweaken the bones.Recipes: Three Treasures Stir Fry Adapted from Nam Singh, L.Ac. Shitake mushrooms support the immune system, walnuts are nourishing to the kidneys and lungs and are high in omega 3 fatty acids, and gouji berries are high in vitamin A and antioxidants, nourish the liver, kidneys and eyes. Serves 4 as a main dish. 10 Shitake (black mushrooms, soaked) 1 cup walnuts, soaked overnight if possible 1 cup gouji berries 5 slices fresh ginger root 1 lb. Chinese long beans, string beans, snap peas or snow peas 1 tablespoon coconut oil, pastured lard, sesame or olive oil ¼ cup sake, mirin or white wine 2 tablespoons tamari or shoyu 1 teaspoon kuzu or arrowroot Toasted or black sesame oil for finishingSoak the mushrooms in a dish of hot water for 20 minutes, then drain the water and set aside. Removethe stems and slice the mushrooms. Wash and cut the long beans, if using. Toast the walnuts lightly in atoaster oven or dry pan until crispy. Heat the oil in a large sauté pan or wok, then sauté the ginger slicesfor 1 minute. Add the beans, and sauté for 2-3 minutes depending on toughness. Add the mushrooms,mirin, and allow the vegetables to cook by steaming. Soak the gouji berries in hot water for a minute, andthen drain. When the beans and mushrooms are tender, add the gouji berries and shoyu. Dissolve the 3
  4. 4. kuzu or arrowroot in hot water and add to the pan to thicken the sauce. Stir in the walnuts, and finish totaste with sesame oil. Serve hot over rice. Vitality Trail MixMix equal parts of: walnuts, almonds, black sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, gouji berries, mulberries, driedapricots. Eat 1-2 small handfuls a day. Variations: pine nuts, pecans, sea palm, dried berries of all sorts(watch for added sugar). Toast any or all of the seeds and nuts, adding tamari if you like. I usually havea bag of trail mix with me, and it is always changing! Bone Broth Kidney superfood!Start by collecting bones. A chicken carcass, the center bone of a lamb roast, small bones from chops, bigbones by the bag from the Farmer’s market or your meat CSA, any or all of these will do. Put them in abig plastic bag in your freezer. Whenever you eat sustainable meat or any meat, add those bones to yourcollection. If you are shy when dining out, tell them the bones are for your dog. When you have enoughto fill your crock pot or stock pot ½ to 2/3 full with bones, go ahead and empty your bag into the pot,cover with cold water and add 1-2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar. Let it sit at room temperature foran hour, letting the acid begin to bring all those good minerals out of the bones and then bring to a boiland simmer for a really long time. For mostly chicken bones, cook at least 24 hours.For mixed bones or others, 2-3 days is good. Let your stock cool a bit and thenstrain. Don’t worry if it looks disgusting at first, strain in a fine strainer and thenplace the stock in a container in the fridge until the fat hardens a bit at the top. Scoopmost of it out, as this is not the finest fat from the animal (I give the extra fat to thecity for composting) and pour the stock into jars, old yogurt containers or ice cubetrays and freeze, labeled for later use. With stock and cooked beans in the freezer Iknow that soup, the staff of life, is always close at hand. Magic Mineral Broth Adapted from Rebecca Katz, The Cancer Fighting Kitchen. The vegetarian’s mineral delight. Cook black beans into it for a kidney soup. A wonderful thing about it is that you don’t peel any of the vegetables, saving a lot of time. You should rinse them before using, however. Makes 6 quarts. 6 carrots cut into thirds 2 onions cut into chunks 1 big leek, cut into thirds 1 bunch celery, including the heart and leaves, cut into thirds 4 red potatoes, quartered 3 yams or sweet potatoes, quartered 5 garlic cloves (yes, unpeeled!), halved Other veggie trimmings: squash pulp and seeds, carrot tops, cilantro stems, etc. 1 -2 strips kombu 2 bay leaves4
  5. 5. 8 quarts water 1 teaspoon sea saltCombine all the of the ingredients except the salt in a large stock pot, fill it with water to within 2 inchesof the top, cover, and bring to a boil. Remove the lid and simmer on low for 2 hours. Strain into another,heat-proof container, and add salt to taste. Proceed with recipes or freeze. Kidney Kichadi (adapted from The Ayurvedic Cookbook by Andrea Morningstar) Serves 5-6. Kichadi is the basis of cleansing diets in Ayurvedic medicine, and can be eaten for breakfast, lunch or dinner. This version strengthens both kidney yin and yang and can be enjoyed as the basis of a simple cleanse for a day or two in winter. 1 burdock root ½ cup aduki beans, soaked overnight ½ stick kombu 6 cups water 2 tablespoons ghee or coconut oil 1 teaspoon cumin seeds (black cumin seeds if available) ¼ tsp each fennel seeds and mustard seeds 1 large onion or leek, chopped 1 teaspoon turmeric 2 bay leaves 1/8 tsp each asafetida and cinnamon 2 carrots or 1 cup Kabocha squash, cubed 1 cup brown basmati, black rice or black quinoa or a combination, soaked overnight and rinsed ¾ tsp sea salt 2 more cups of water (as needed)Wash and lightly scrub the burdock root. Chop into 1/8” rounds. Place the burdock, aduki beans andkombu in a large pot with 6 cups water, bring to a boil, cover and simmer. While the beans are cooking,heat the ghee or coconut oil in a medium skillet and add the cumin, fennel and mustard seeds. When theybegin to pop and sizzle, add the onion or leek, turmeric, bay leaves, asafetida and cinnamon. Saute untilthe onion is tender, then add the carrots or squash and the rice or quinoa and continue to sauté for 1-2minutes. Set aside. When the beans are almost tender, add the sautéed vegetables and rice, along with anextra 2 cups water if needed. Simmer covered for 30 minutes, then add the salt and simmer until all istender, 10 or more minutes longer. Garnish with yogurt and cilantro and enjoy! 3450 16th Street San Francisco CA 94114 ph 415.252.8711 fax 415.252.8710 www.iepclinic.com 5
  6. 6. Bibliography:The Good Fat Cookbook by Fran McCulloughHealthy Aging by Andrew Weil, MDHealing with Whole Foods by Paul PitchfordEat Real Food by Nishanga Bliss, L.Ac.Sources of Cod Liver Oil: BEST (Available Online/Mail Order): • Green Pasture Products: Blue Ice High-Vitamin Fermented Cod Liver Oil, (402) 858-4818, greenpasture.org • Dr. Rons Ultra-Pure: Blue Ice High-Vitamin Fermented Cod Liver Oil, (877) 472-8701, drrons.com • Radiant Life: Blue Ice High-Vitamin Fermented Cod Liver Oil and Premier High-Vitamin Cod Liver Oil, (888) 593-8333, 4radiantlife.com • Azure Standard: Blue Ice High-Vitamin Fermented Cod Liver Oil, (541) 467-2230, azurestandard.comGOOD (and available in Stores): • Carlsons soft gel Cod Liver Oil 1,000 mg capsules • NOW double strength Cod Liver Oil capsules • Sonnes Cod Liver Oil • Twin Labs Cod Liver Oil 3450 16th Street San Francisco CA 94114 ph 415.252.8711 fax 415.252.8710 www.iepclinic.com6

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