Category Archives: Food

FOOD is the Foundation!

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FOOD is the Foundation!

Food is the foundation of well-being, in body, mind, and spirit. I believe it, I live it, I teach it. Nowhere is this fact more apparent than with the brain function dis-eases and im-balances that we are experiencing today.  In our children and in our elders, and everyone in between.

I was blessed to be able to attend the annual Autism One Conference in Colorado Springs over Memorial Day weekend, the first year it was not held in Chicago. As many of you know, my work in recent years (well, really I started about 7 years ago), has revolved around the brain-gut connection, and the impact a leaky gut can have on all sorts of disorders, but especially brain disorders: inability to focus, ADD, ADHD, Autism Spectrum, depression, dyslexia, schizophrenia…and so many others. I have been trained and certified in the GAPS (Gut and Psychology Syndrome) nutritional protocol, and use my knowledge of cooking to help people to implement the diet with ease.

 

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With friend, colleague, and fellow GAPS practitioner, Amy Mihaly, at Autism One Conference in Colorado Springs last month.

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We were walking billboards!

START with the FOOD!

While there were so many good people doing so many good things to help children on the Autism Spectrum and with ADD and ADHD, I was struck by the amount of modalities, remedies, supplements, and technologies that have been developed for this population. I was also struck with the lack of emphasis on the food. People! People! The food is the foundation…and if you can get the food right–take out everything that is NOT food, remove dyes and excitotoxins and glutamic acid, and GMOs and pesticides and herbicides and glyphosate–and add in real, healing food, many of the symptoms and problems that these children have…and adults in our country…would resolve. Start with the food, folks! Start with the food!

And so, I carry on, waving the flag of Real Food, Nourishing, Traditional Food…prepared and cooked to maximize nutrients and digestibility. Often, I have the sensation that I am a “voice crying in the desert”–but I’ll keep on crying out while people continue to look everywhere for answers to their health dilemmas and “random” symptoms but their own kitchen. I will continue to teach cooking, and continue writing and speaking…so people can take back their health by going back into the kitchen.

If you would like to join me in the kitchen, I am offering my four-day intensive, Learn to Cook! in October of this year. It is the only session that is currently scheduled. If you would like more information about the course, go here. I welcome all ages and levels of knowledge and experience, and you can learn to cook for yourself and your family, or for the purpose of later teaching others. I am also putting many of my classes online, so that you may take them at your leisure, in the comfort of your own home. Stay tuned for more information on those classes! The first one, The Ketchup Revolution: Making Condiments that are Good for You is available now!

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Learn to Cook! at Fields of Athenry Farm, Purcellville, Virginia, June 2015

For more information about Learn to Cook! Cooking for Well-Being Teacher Training in October, 2017 

For more information about The Ketchup Revolution online class on fermented condiments

Sign up to be on the mailing list to be notified about our new classes on healing autism with food here: Feeding Your Autistic Child

 

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Edema? Eczema? A-fib? The One Pot Meal that Heals™

This is a story based on personal experience. It is not peer reviewed and has no footnotes for you. It is not academic (though I have plenty of stories of clients and students that have healed through food…). This is just a story of how a tremendously healing meal…one that is SO easy to make…so deeply nourishing…worked its magic in my own home. On symptoms we had NO IDEA it would clear.

The Gut and Psychology Syndrome™, aka, “GAPS” diet, is known mostly for its ability to heal symptoms of brain function that are connected to the relative health or damage of the gut. ADD, ADHD, Autism Spectrum, brain fog, dyslexia, dyspraxia, schizophrenia to name a few. I teach how to cook for the GAPS diet, and most of the people who attend or wish to work with me have those symptoms. I am used to the idea of eating to heal the gut, and subsequently, brain function. Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride, author of the GAPS diet, has been saying for years (and I believe her) that all physical symptoms can be traced to the gut, a leaky gut, that is. She is currently writing the “Gut and Physiology Syndrome”…which says just that. But now, I got to see and experience first-hand, how the GAPS diet heals so many other things.

High blood sugar? Check.

High blood pressure? Check.

Atrial fibrillation? Check.

Arrhythmia? Check.

Severe Edema? Check.

Weight loss? Check.

Yep. All of the above symptoms back into normal range…or no longer symptoms, within just two months. These were chronic, entrenched symptoms, present for decades. And I didn’t even TRY to heal them.  No special diet, no “intake” done. It was merely the result of eating the way we eat in my home…organic whenever possible, no processed foods, no soda or soft drinks. And one other thing. We eat Meat Stock two or three times a week in my home. Yep. That’s it. Meat Stock.

 

meat stock photo

What IS “Meat Stock”? Meat Stock is what I call the “One Pot Meal that Heals™”… because that’s what it does. It heals. Meat Stock is the foundation of the GAPS diet, it is the food that provides the nutrients that heal a leaky gut…and then the symptoms of that leaky gut. Meat Stock is NOT just broth. It is NOT bone broth. It is faster to make, and more nutrient-dense than bone broth. Meat Stock is an entire MEAL…you eat the meat, you drink the stock that is made from the meat, and you eat the vegetables, (with liberal amounts of healthy traditional fats, like pastured butter, tallow, duck fat…and good, high mineral sea salt.) Meat Stock is made with any meat with a joint and connective tissue–chicken, turkey, duck, quail, beef, bison, lamb, pork, fish…It’s a one pot meal. Did I mention that it heals?

So what can Meat Stock heal?

Leaky gut and the symptoms that stem from it…everything mentioned above, including:

  • brain function  and nervous system disorders: ADD, ADHD, Autism Spectrum, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, SPD, OCD, depression, dyslexia, dyspraxia, brain fog…
  • digestive system disorders: IBS, Colitis, food allergies, constipation, diarrhea, bloating, SIBO, high blood sugar–hypoglycemia, hyperglycemia
  • skin disorders, most notably eczema…
  • autoimmune disorders (of which there are between 80-100 or more, depending on who you ask)
  • heart function disorders: arrhythmia, atrial fibrillation…
  • edema
  • asthma

If it could be as easy as changing your diet and eating a One Pot Meal that Heals™…aka, Meat Stock, wouldn’t you be interested? Even if it didn’t clear everything within two months, wouldn’t it be worth it? Imagine if you worked with someone to implement the GAPS diet over a period of six months –  two years, how much could be healed?!

For more information, including recipes…I wrote a book, Cooking Techniques for the Gut and Psychology Syndrome Diet, Part I: Meat Stock and Bone Broth 

For more information about leaky gut-what it is and why you should heal it, see “What is a Leaky Gut, Anyway?

If you would like some guidance as you cook to heal your leaky gut and the symptoms that come from it, contact me.

Celtic Sea Salt

Gut and Psychology Syndrome

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SPRING into Wellness!

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Believe it or not, Spring is just 8 days away!!! Yep! Clocks just “sprang” ahead last night, and the Spring Equinox is Monday, March 20!

The word “spring” brings to mind not only the season, but also “spring” as in “launch”, “spring in your step”, things “springing up all over”, such as flowers and plants, and finally, “Spring cleaning”. Not only is it time to clear out the dust bunnies that may have gathered in your home over the winter months, but it is also time to clear out your liver and jump start your health in preparation for the faster paced fun-in-the sun Summer months.

Eating for SPRING, eating with SPRING

Mother Nature provides us with the perfect foods to help us “Spring clean” our bodies. The flavors of Spring are those meant to encourage movement and detoxifying, and make way for new life. The flavors are termed “bitter” , “pungent”, and “astringent” in Chinese medicine and the Indian healing system of Ayurveda. The color is bright, spring green. Two seasonal favorites which are champions at Spring cleaning are asparagus and dandelion greens. Asparagus is a wonderful blood cleanser and dandelion greens not only strengthen the liver, but also aid in kidney function. Dandelion greens act as a very mild diuretic and are rich in calcium, folic acid, potassium, vitamin A, iron, choline, and vitamins B1 and B2, as well as trace minerals. These vegetables, as all vegetables, are best when they are organic, fresh, and locally grown. (If you are interested in why this is so, contact me for further information.) Asparagus should be cooked until just done, or still firm, and lightly steamed, to retain maximum vitamins and minerals. When cooked correctly, the color of asparagus brightens. Dandelion greens are best raw, tossed in with your other salad greens to retain their vitamins and vitality.  You may also wish to gently steam or sauté them with other greens, such as chard and/or spinach.

Another aid in our Spring journey toward wellness is the lemon. We know it is astringent because of the way we “pucker up” when we taste it. Squeezing fresh lemon over salad or your favorite vegetables is a wonderful way to promote digestion and cleansing, and it tastes great, too. Drinking a fresh lemon juice beverage in the morning will help to wake up your liver, readying it for its workday of cleansing and detoxifying.

beautiful lettuce

‘Tis the season to go RAW more than cooked!

Look for foods full of life force and vitality–Spring energy. Look for anything green, Spring green. And include any of the following veggies in your diet, in abundance: asparagus, arugula, dandelion greens, radishes, daikon root, kale, Chinese cabbage, lemon, parsley, spinach, okra, green onions, snap peas, spring greens, micro greens, baby greens of all sorts. Be sure to “spice things up” during this season, to clear out the stagnation that came from the hibernation of the Winter. Some spices that will help “fire things up” and get things moving? Yep, you guessed it: garlic, ginger, black pepper, cayenne pepper, chili peppers…

Along with eating to cleanse and clear out old, stagnant energy, consider including the young, bright energy of Spring in your diet. An easy way to do this is to add raw SPROUTS to your salads or steam or sauté them in lemon and ghee or olive oil. Growing your own sprouts is a wonderful way to experience the bursting energy of Spring right on your windowsill or counter top. You will be surprised to discover how easy it is to do, and how quickly they sprout! “Spring” into Spring!

 

I invite you to join me online for a Spring Cleanse! Refresh and renew your liver and yourself with a cleanse! We’ll start on the Spring Equinox, Monday, March 20. You can find more information here: http://bit.ly/2nty87A

May your journey to wellness this Spring be delightful and delicious!

 

 

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Beans at High Altitudes!

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A long time ago…more than six years now, I published a chart that summarized how to soak beans…which “neutralizers” for which beans, how long to soak them, at what temperature water, and how to cook them. I gleaned the information from Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon. When I asked Sally to review my chart for accuracy, she said that I had missed the baking soda. “Baking soda”?! There was no mention of baking soda in her chapters on beans! Yikes! Sally provided me with a report to read through on how to make beans more easily digested  that had been published in Wise Traditions, the journal of the Weston A. Price Foundation. In order to make my soaking chart accurate, I needed to include baking soda as one of the neutralizers for specific types of beans. So I updated the chart, got her “thumbs up”, and had it printed. My chart is called “Preparing Whole Grains and Legumes for Ease of Digestion and  Nutrient Availability“. It has been available on my website since 2010. It is hand-illustrated and hand-lettered, and it has well served many people around the world since then.

As some of you know, I moved to Colorado in 2011. I now live at almost 5,000 feet, after living at sea level for all of my life until then. Living at high altitude demands some changes in the kitchen. One of those changes has been in cooking beans. Now, while we are not big bean eaters in my house, I do soak beans for chili, and lentils for soup, etc. I have found the easiest way to make the perfect beans at high altitude. I shared that information in my latest post on Selene River Press, in “Perfect Beans at 5,000 Feet“. You can find that article here. I hope you enjoy it!

 

Order your own Bean and Grain Chart!

Nourishing Traditions, by Sally Fallon Morell

 

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Bone Broth does not heal a leaky gut!

Beef broth and vegetables

Nope. It does not–at least, according to the GAPS (Gut and Psychology Syndrome) Diet. In fact, bone broth is not even mentioned in the diet! Can you believe it?  A little background here.

I came across the book Gut and Psychology Syndrome in 2007, in my search for healing diets specifically for children with autism spectrum and ADD or ADHD. I had read many others, parts of which included many things that I could see would work. But somehow, they never felt complete to me. That same year, nearly a decade ago, I was blessed to meet Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride, author of the book and creator of the healing protocol for which the book is named at the 2007 annual conference of the Weston A. Price Foundation in Chantilly, Virginia. I remember that I drove out from my home in Silver Spring, Maryland specifically to hear Dr. Natasha’s talk on the Gut and Psychology Syndrome. That day, she talked for a mere hour and fifteen minutes, one of many other “track” speakers. (At nearly every conference since then, Dr. Natasha has presented an entire day on GAPS. This was the introduction of her work to “WAPers” and others who sought alternative healing based on traditional foods.)  As I sat and listened to her talk, tears welled up and I cried. I cried the tears of knowing that I had finally found someone with answers to why people were so sick. Why the children were so sick, and what could be done about it. The program she explained felt complete. It had the missing pieces. And it started with THE FOOD.

For those of you who know me, you know that I believe and have built my life’s work on the understanding that “food is the foundation”. Good food. Real food. Food that is raised in a sustainable way. Food that nourishes the land as it is grown, and the people that eat it. Food that is cooked in a way that preserves and maximizes nutrient value and digestibility. Food provides the building blocks, macro and micro-nutrients that the human body needs to thrive. It has come to be known as “nourishing, traditional food”, based on the principles of Dr. Weston A. Price, and the cookbook that Sally Fallon (Morell) published in 1998, Nourishing Traditions. To hear that day a medical doctor talk about how AUTISM could be healed through FOOD…how it worked and why it worked, was at the same time mind-blowing to me, and obviously simple. Of course it could. Of course it would. So, after that day, I set myself the task of learning the diet, inside and out, the nuances, the cooking techniques so that I could share them with anyone who would listen…and I do that to this day.

I developed cooking classes specific to the GAPS diet in 2010. When I was introduced to Dr. Joseph Mercola in 2011 by Dr. Natasha and her husband at the Wise Traditions Conference in Dallas, and they told him I had developed cooking classes for the GAPS diet, he used the term “ground breaking”. Yes, they were–and yes, they are, for I am still working to teach those techniques that are specific to GAPS, to clear up misunderstandings about cooking for the diet and how it works. I write, I blog, I speak, I teach. Wherever and whenever I can. When I realized the misunderstanding about bone broth that was going around the forums and list serves at that time–that moms all over the country were trying to implement the diet with bone broth–long cooked bone broth, full of glutamic acid (read “MSG”), which could trigger neurological symptoms in those that had them (read “autistic children”) had to be corrected. There is no bone broth in GAPS, folks. The stock that Dr. Natasha writes about is clearly Meat Stock. Short cooked stock, made from meaty bones with joints and connective tissue. Yes, you can throw in marrow bones for their added goodness, but they are not the main ingredients.

In order to get the word out and clear up the confusion between bone broth and meat stock, I started writing a series of books called Cooking Techniques for the Gut and Psychology Syndrome (GAPS) Diet. Eventually, there will be four parts to the series, explaining the very important nuances of cooking for this healing protocol. This is not the “well” diet, folks. It is a therapeutic diet, that is designed to produced therapeutic results. Part I of my series of books (available as ebooks to get the word out, pdfs and print editions), the most important part, is called “Meat Stock and Bone Broth“. My publisher, Selene River Press (a fabulous publisher that carries select books on nutrition and health based on the works of Dr. Royal Lee) puts it like this: “Bringing new clarity to the GAPS diet in non-clinical language all readers can understand, expert chef, author, and teacher Monica Corrado shores up a critical but often misunderstood aspect of the GAPS healing protocol—meat stock and bone broth. When you make them. How you make them. Why you make them. And, crucially, why you shouldn’t mix them up.”

I invite you to take a read of my book on Meat Stock and Bone Broth. I also invite you to experience the most healing part of the GAPS diet, the “Intro” with me during what I am calling “Jump Start: GAPS”, an online program I am offering February 20 – 27. An easy, inexpensive way to access me, a Certified GAPS Practitioner and a Teaching Chef, and have your questions answered. More info about Jump Start: GAPS here.

 

More about the GAPS Diet

More about Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride

Cooking Techniques for the Gut and Psychology Syndrome (GAPS) Diet Part I: Meat Stock and Bone Broth

Part II: Culturing Dairy

Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon Morell

Weston A. Price Foundation

Dr. Royal Lee

 

Note: Some of the above are affiliate links. Thank you for supporting my writing.

 

 

 

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What’s up with Bread in the US of A?

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This is a beautiful, homemade, sprouted spelt sourdough bread, made for me by Min Kim.This is NOT typical American bread these days. However, it is an example of the true bread we are meant to eat. Read why in my article! 

Ever wonder why you can eat bread, rolls, bakeries, and pasta with ease when you travel to Europe or almost any other country in the world? Interested in some ideas? Check out my latest article, “Gluten-Free in America” on Selene River Press HERE.

 

If you would like to learn how to make your own delicious, nutritious, traditional sourdough bread with ease, check out Min’s ebook HERE

 

 

Min is a graduate of my Cooking for Well-Being Teacher Training program. She taught herself how to make sourdough bread after healing herself and her family with the GAPS (Gut and Psychology Syndrome) Diet. Min makes sourdough in SoCAL and teaches classes. If you would like to heal your gut and be able to eat bread again, schedule a Wellness Consultation.

 

 

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Holiday Bloat? Something you can do right now!

If you are like most people. you may be feeling a bit bloated or heavy around the middle right now. A few days –or weeks, in some cases–of holiday festivities are taking their toll… on your energy level, your brain function, your digestion and your waistline.

We still have a week to go until the ball drops on Time Square to ring in 2017, and there may be more gatherings and parties ahead of you before you make that New Year’s Resolution. I mean, why start now, right?

There is a very simple thing that you can do right now that will help. It’s easy, it’s inexpensive, it tastes good, and it is high impact on your liver…which will help ease that bloat. You’ll feel better soon, and you will be better able to handle the upcoming indulgences.

What is it? The humble lemon. Yep.

lemon-cut

Every morning, cut a lemon in half and squeeze the juice into a glass of warm water. Add a pinch of turmeric or cayenne, if you would like to go turbo. Be sure the lemon is organic, so that you can avoid adding more toxins to your diet, those toxins we are trying to get rid of… ! If you drink tea, herbal, green, or black, try adding a bit of lemon to each cup or mug. Throughout the day, squeeze a bit of lemon into your water glass. Room temperature or warm water works best, because “cold contracts and warm releases”.

If you’d like a little boost to your immune system, eat a bit of lemon rind-chock full of citrus bioflavanoids, Vitamin C, and potassium!

 

For those of you who would like to start the New Year with a gentle cleanse and re-balancing, join me for my one week, online program, Resolution: Re-Set! January 9-16, 2017. Anyone can join me from around the globe. You can find more information here: https://goo.gl/fNA2hY The price goes up on December 28, so register now to receive your Resolution: Re-Set info and package!

Happy cleansing!

🙂

 

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