Tricks for a Healthy Halloween

Hallowe'en is full of fun but also the  not-good-choice sugar season. But like anything, there are opportunities to make event his daunting haunting season one full of healthy choices. Here are a is a couple of healthy tricks for the haunting season:

1. Full up the kids with healthy food & protein before TorT'ing.
2. Examine all treats for choking hazards & tampering.
3. Explain to children what sugar load does to them - it's a chance to educate!
4. Eat a teaspoon of Chia to counter sugar load - balances by 40%
5. Have one treat a day - that's why it is called a treat!
6. Have kids rate candy for nutritional value or NOT and group them for best choice to worst (think about additives, MSG, coloring)
7. Eat an equal amount of fruit to candy.
8. Think about donating candy to encourage 'out-of-me' focus.
9. Make treats at home full of healthy fats (coconut oil) and healthy sugars (Coconut Sugar)
10. Walk or run the block tonight - rain or shine it's an opportunity to exercise.

Happy Hallowe'en - have FUN!

Lead a Long, Super-Life with SUPERFOOD!

The best way to promote longevity and lead a long, happy, and healthy life is simple - It starts with a good balance of good-for-you foods and a moderate daily exercise to reach a healthy lifestyle. Raw, unrefined and minimally processed foods are the best kinds of foods to eat as they jam in plenty of heart healthy and longevity increasing goodies. Make a start by cutting out foods that contain unhealthy substances as bad cholesterol, added bad sugars, trans fats and saturated fats. Its really as easy as swapping out that unhealthy, bleached and highly processed flour for a more nutrient dense flour such as oat or coconut flour that’s super high in nutrients and fiber in your yummy baked goods instead… your kids won’t know the difference! Superfoods, are becoming more and more popular, and for great reason too! Superfoods are nutritionally dense foods that are high in fiber, are minimally processed, unrefined and have shown to have many health benefits. Lets have a look at a number of superfoods that can be easily found today and after plenty of research, have been shown to be beneficial to our bodies in many ways, including promoting longevity on both the inside and out:

Brilliant berries:
Berries are famous for their large antioxidant content which is vital in assisting our bodies in fighting off harmful free radicals, and also to protect our cells from any damage, whether it be from the environment around us, or the type of lifestyle we may lead in todays busy world. Goji berries contain a whopping 500x more of the free radical fighting antioxidant Vitamin C alone, compared to that of an orange along with an abundance of other important antioxidants and healthy nutrients needed for a long healthy life. They have been called the longevity fruit and for good reason too! They are very rich in carotenoids such as beta-carotene and zeaxanthin which helps to protect our eyes retinas by absorbing blue light and acts as an important antioxidant that prevents cell damage in the eyes which could in turn lead to development of age related macular degeneration which is the leading cause of vision impairment in people over the age of 65[i]. Free radicals cause gradual cell damage that responsible for visible aging and can also boost development of some genetic and age related diseases such as cancer or dementia. Goji berries also contain a large amount of polysaccharides which causes the body to produce more human growth hormone (HGH) from the pituitary gland which can help slow down the aging process. Goji Berries are very beneficial in cardiovascular health and our circulatory system, due to their super cholesterol lowering properties, which helps to keep your heart in tip-top shape and your blood balanced - two very important aspects of a healthy human body.

Radically raw plant foods:
Raw fruits, vegetables and seeds such as hemp and chia are all part of a balanced diet with their large, naturally occurring amount of nutrients and minerals. They contain fabulous anti-cancer phytochemicals (naturally occurring plant chemicals), which provide stress damage resistance to the cells in our body and therefore help to prevent development of aging, and certain stress or age related diseases[ii]. Essential fatty acids and high antioxidant levels found in seeds such as hemp and chia, help to boost cardiovascular health by lowering bad (LDL) cholesterol levels, maintaining the health of your skin, hair and nails and therefore protecting them from signs of aging, helping to boost visual acuity, decrease the risk of developing Dementia and Alzheimers disease, along with protecting the brain from aging effects, helping to maintain alertness and mental health. Raw plant foods also contain anti-inflammatory properties, which have been associated in helping to reduce inflammation in related health issues such as arthritis, which can provide some comfort and relief to associated pain to those certain affected areas.

Great grains:
A unique polyphenol called Avenathramides can be found in oats and has the ability to keep the arteries clear and free of any plaque build up. This same compound lowers the pro-inflammatory cytokines that can cause inflammation in the body, that is associated with certain health issues such as Parkinsons disease, Alzhiemers and cancer. Beta-glucan is another substance found in oats, which help to boost our immune system, which is very beneficial in the elderly to keep their resistance strong to certain diseases and illness.[iii] Quinoa is another ancient grain jam-packed with longevity loving goodness. It contains high levels of magnesium, which help to relax your muscles and blood vessels that affects blood pressure and is crucial for cardiovascular health. Manganese and Copper act as antioxidants in your body to get rid of disease causing substances which may be effective in treating conditions artherosclerosis, breast cancer, diabetes and insulin resistance helping to prolong a long, healthy life.

RAWsome Cacao (raw chocolate):
Unlike commercially processed and refined chocolate bars, antioxidants are preserved in raw cacao and score a huge 62,000 on the ORAC scale. By keeping cacao in its raw state, it results in a much higher level antioxidants that are not lost during intense processing methods that can dissolve plaque built up on artery walls, keeping them clear and are therefore less likely to negatively affect your hearts health. Raw cacao, being one of the richest natural sources of antioxidants has twice as much as red wine and three times the amount of green tea! These antioxidants, along with anandamides (neurotransmitters) help to increase cardiovascular health by improving blood vessel dilation, blood pressure and also lowering LDL (bad) cholesterol levels which are all essential in the prevention of cardiovascular disease, one of the leading causes of death in North America. A feel good stress defense shield called serotonin helps us to have a good nights sleep and also protects us from stress related diseases as we age. In addition to all of these essential disease fighting substances, there are phytochemicals found in cacao that reveal it may be the most chemically complex food on earth when consumed in raw form and in every human diet to promote well-being and longevity[iv].

For more information on how to use these delicious, long-life superfoods, visit for some fantastic recipe ideas!

Indian-Spiced Quick Oats - By Superfoodie Christa Collie

Gluten Free, Nut Free, Soy Free, Corn Free, Vegan!

This recipe is so versatile feel free to use whatever you have in your pantry and to fine tune to your eclectic or traditional tastes. It can make for a great side dish, main or next day lunch! However you use it...enjoy!

Ingredients:1/2 cup Mum's Original Quick Flake Oats (gf)
1 cup boiling water
1 tbsp coconut oil
1 tbsp Mum's Original Premium White Chia Seeds
1 tbsp Mum's Original Slow Roasted Hemp Hearts
Pinch Mum's Original Himalayan Rock Salt
Few dashes dulse flakes w/ garlic
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
2 tbsp Mum's Original Goji Berries or currants
1 tbsp Mum's Original Delores Hemp Hearts
splash non-dairy milk 
Directions:1. Mix together all dry ingredients in a small bowl.
2. Stir in boiling water and coconut oil until everything is wet and not clumpy
3. Cover bowl and let stand for 5 minutes
4. Top with goji berries and Delores hemp hearts and non-dairy milk (as much or as little as you like)
5. Feel free to add in some curry seasoning, hot sauce  or garam masala to taste. Enjoy!
About our Superfoodie:
Christa is a plant-based food lover and aspiring nutritionist. Since her diagnosis of Celiac Disease 11 years ago, she has slowly discovered how foods, especially superfoods, have an immense impact on healing the body naturally. A loving wife of over 11 years, she makes Calgary her home, and the mountains her playground. You can find more about Christa’s  journey and passion for health and well-being at her blog here.

Facts about fibre-licious foods for a fantastic healthy you

Facts about fibre
Many people know that more fibre is needed in their daily diets and some of us don’t quite consume enough. Consuming more fibre can help in many different ways. Some people may need it to lower cholesterol or blood sugar, or simply to help with regular bowel movements.

According to a panel of Canadian and US scientists, the daily intake of fibre for women aged 50 and under is 25g, and for men its 38g. Women over 50 require 21g and men require 30g. This isn’t because as you get older, you need less, it’s because as you age your body doesn’t need as many calories.

Unfortunately, many of us in North America only consume 50% of the recommended daily intake. So why is it so important for us to get the full recommended daily intake and why is this so detrimental for our health and well being? The issue is that by not consuming atleast the recommended daily intake of fibre, we could be putting ourselves at a bigger risk of some major health issues, ones that are bigger than irregular bowel movements.

Before society was introduced into todays processed fake fibres lots of different whole foods contained a whole whack of healthy mixed fibres – whole grains, beans, fruits and veggies. Sadly today, companies are adding in isolated (bad) fibres in powder form to foods that should not even contain ANY fibre at all. The simple question still remains ‘but why?', no one knows. Lets look at how fibre can help you avoid some major health issues;

Heart Disease
Data and previous studies have shown a link that fibre prevents cardiovascular disease. It has been found in a past study that there was a lower risk of heart disease in people that reported eating the most fibre.  These studies also showed that the foods that helped protect the cardiovascular system the most were grains, and the fibre found in them.  One thing that scientists however are uncertain of, is if the fibre protecting our hearts is soluble or insoluble fibre. This is due to fibres link with cholesterol – soluble fibres seem to reduce cholesterol, where as insoluble fibres do not. The best way to protect your heart and keep you pumping is to eat a balanced mix of whole grains, fruits and vegetables to keep you covered, instead of processed fibres such as those added into yogurts and frozen deserts etc. This way your keeping the full fibre package in your diet.

Once again, evidence has shown that fibre is also linked to another huge health issue today, diabetes. Just like heart disease, incorporating fibre from whole foods in your diet such as whole grains, fruits and vegetables is linked to a lower risk of diabetes.
Results from 2 studies – one on 65,000 women, and another on 43,000 men, showed that those who reported eating the most fibre from grains (approx. 8g) showed a huge 30% less risk than those consuming the least amount (approx.. 3g). Scientists believe that it’s the gummy-like soluble fibres in oats and barley tend to keep blood sugar levels under control. This could potentially be because of the idea that fibre slows down absorption of carbohydrates in foods, so blood sugar levels do not peak.

Colon Cancer
Since the 80’s as time and technology have progressed, the idea that fibre can prevent colon cancer is still somewhat inconclusive. Over 3 years, 700 people were told to eat 13.5g of wheat bran and another 700 were told to eat only 2g daily. At the end of this study, those consuming more fibre had no fewer pre-cancerous colon polyps that those consuming a lot less. A second study was conducted, that this time included 2000 people over 4 years. The first 1000 were told to eat a low-fat diet rich in fibre (36g daily) from whole foods, and the second 1000 people were to eat their normal diet. Once again, at the end of the study, those consuming a low-fat, fibre-rich diet had no fewer polyps. A third and much larger study by EPIC (European investigation into Cancer & Nutrition) who tracked 500,000 people in 10 countries over 5 years this time.  This time, the results were a success – the people out of those 500,000 who were consuming more fibre showed a whopping 40% lower risk of colon cancer.[1] So why is it possible that two studies failed, and one showed huge success? It is possible that its not just about ‘fibre’, but rather something about fibre-eaters that lowers their risk. Although lowering the risks of heart disease and diabetes is larger, cancer may possibly be prevented by consuming more fibre over a more lengthly period of time.

What if eating fibre rich foods could also help you maintain your weight? Fibre can potentially slow down the rate of food leaving your stomach, keeping you full for lengthier periods of time. A study on approximately 75,000 women who increased their fibre by 12g daily, had an 8lb weight loss. A second study was with 22,000 men who increased their fibre by 20g and had a weight loss of 12lbs. This weight loss is based on eating high fibre whole foods, as opposed to high-fibre snacks and foods that are still high in calories.

So whats the difference – Isolated and Natural fibres
As mentioned previously, nowadays companies are adding in isolated fibres – Inulin, cellulose, and oat hull fibres to foods and labeling them with ‘added fibre’. This type of fibre is not naturally occurring. In order for fibre to be helpful, it has to be soluble or insoluble to help with certain conditions. For example, to lower bad cholesterol, fibre has to be soluble and viscous. Inulin, a non-natural fibre, is soluble but not vicous so it wouldn’t have the same effects on the human body as a natural fibre.

When talking also about regularity, Inulin and other false fibres are eaten up by the gastrointestinal tract before making it through. Therefore, they don’t help with this either. The only thing these types of fibres can do for you, is to give you regular gas build up and other gastrointestinal issues. Who wants that? The scary thing is that both isolated and naturally occurring fibres are all labeled the same on food products. So whats the best way to ensure your getting the good stuff? Whole foods!

Add in these super foods to your daily diet to ensure a fibre-rich, super healthy lifestyle and find out what health problems you could help youself avoid.

  • Contains good cholesterols, reduces imflammation, and improves circulation and is amazing for lowering your risks of heart disease.  
  • Contains high quality lean proteins needed to naturally balance blood sugars and improve circulation; great for helping those with diabetes and also helping to avoid it.
  • Natural appetite suppressant , high in fibre, leading to reduced cravings for sugary, starchy foods. Users have reported losing up to 1lb per day in some cases; fabulous for those with obesity concerns and weight loss.
  • Helping to clear bowels, fantastic for helping with regularity.
  • Natural hemp oils found in hemp hearts contain plant sterols reducing risk of colon cancer.
  • High in magnesium which helps with keeping blood vessels healthy, improving cardiovascular health and reducing risk for heart disease.
  • High in manganese, magnesium, folate, and phosphorous preventing diabetes and aiding those with it.
  • Low in calories. Full of vitamins and minerals to aid breakdown of fats. Perfect for those wanting weight loss, or those needing help with obesity.
  • A complete protein, high in fibre, making it easy to digest so the body doesn’t have to work hard to break it down or store it in the stomach for long, helping with regularity.
  • Reduces secretion of bile acids which are linked to colon cancer.
  • Lowers cholesterol, aiding in lower risks of heart disease.
  • Balances blood sugar levels reducing diabetes risk and diabetic complications with those already diagnosed
  • High in soluble fibre, aiding in slower digestion and an extended sensation of fullness, helping those with weight loss and/or obesity.
  • Helps to rid the body of toxins due to high soluble fibre, helping with regularity.
  • Anticarcinogenic due to high fibre content, aiding in colon health and preventing colon cancer.
  • Reduces levels of imflammation in the heart, prevents fatty deposits and supports cardiovascular health helping with the prevention of heart disease.
  • Stabilizes blood sugar. Supporting diabetes  prevention and conditions.
  • Reduces cravings for sweets, boosts metabolism, and high antioxidant, great for weight loss and management and those struggling with obesity.
  • Easily digestible and high in fibre helping you with your regularity and prevention of colon cancer.
  • Highest dietary source of magnesium, supporting your heart, decreasing blood pressure, lowering bad cholesterol, and dilating blood vessels, amazing for heart disease prevention
  • High in dietary fibre and rich in antioxidants (richest natural source!) aiding with regularity, obesity, and the prevention of colon cancer.