Category Archives: New Food of the Month Challenge

Get Acquainted with Arugula

Baby arugula

Arugula – the first thing to pop out of my spring garden.

You learn something every day! I just learned that an alternative name for arugula is rocket salad, a name earned because it rockets out of the ground each spring. If you are not yet eating arugula on a frequent basis, I hope you will give this super-healthy green a try.

One of the main mantras I heard during my training at IIN was that most people would feel better if they simply drank more water and ate more greens. Follow this advice and eat arugula! It is a low-FODMAP green which means that you can enjoy the health benefits of arugula without having to worry about it setting off any unwanted digestive symptoms. Compared to most other salad greens, arugula has more antioxidants, phytonutrients, calcium, folate, magnesium, and vitamin E.

arugula salad

Fodmap-friendly arugula salad with cantaloupe and pecans.

Arugula does have a strong, peppery taste, which may come across a little bitter. You can tone down the bitterness of the arugula by pairing it in your salad with some fruit or avocado (small amount on the avocado to keep it low-FODMAP). I personally love to top my arugula salad with my balsamic vinaigrette dressing. (P.S. The above salad is of one of the recipes you will find in my  book, “The Everything® Guide to the Low-FODMAP Diet.“)

Give arugula a try and let me know what you think! If you have a fave arugula recipe, I would love it if you shared it below.


My Love Affair with Flaxseed

krups80After eight years, my handy dandy Krups coffee/flaxseed grinder gave a little grunt and then passed on. As I ordered a new one, I reflected on how flaxseed has become such a regular part of my diet that I tend to take it for granted. I first started to use flaxseed when I went through my phase of reading everything that  Dr. Andrew Weil had ever written. What sold me on flaxseed was that it is a good source of Omega 3 fatty acids which are excellent for reducing inflammation. At that time, inflammation was a big concern of mine because I struggled with two health problems that inflammation played a role in: chronic sinus issues and knee pain from an old injury. So I ordered flaxseed from a source Dr. Weil recommended, it came with that handy dandy Krups grinder and I became a regular flaxseed user.

How do I use flaxseed? I put a tablespoon in my morning cereal or muesli and another in my afternoon smoothie. Now flaxseed is not the only thing that I do for my health, but I no longer have constant colds and my knee bothers me so rarely that I actually forget to tell new yoga teachers about it when they ask, “Do you have any injuries I should know about?”  I think flaxseed has played a big part in addressing both of these issues for me.

The best way to use flaxseed is to buy the seeds whole and then ground them yourself using a small coffee grinder. I usually grind enough to last a week or two. Once the seeds are ground, they must be refrigerated or the oils within them will turn rancid.

Flaxseed has a pleasant, nutty taste. Unlike many other things that are good for you, (did someone say wheatgrass?), you do not have to acquire a taste for it. It will affect the stool, however, so best to start with perhaps a half of a tablespoon a day and then work up to two tablespoons a day. Flaxseed can give the stool a gooey consistency, so it is especially helpful if you deal with hard stools or constipation. Flaxseed can help firm up the stool for those who have IBS-D, but I would recommend adding it into the diet very slowly.

Hopefully you will also fall in love with these little golden seeds!


My New Favorite Warm Breakfast – Amaranth!

2013-12-20 07.06.30It is amazing what one will eat when one becomes a “happy health nut“. My latest discovery is amaranth and I am hooked! Therefore, amaranth is going to serve as January’s entry for your New Food of the Month Challenge. I encourage you to try amaranth in a creamy porridge that smells amazing and will make your belly feel so happy and satisfied.

Below you will find the link to the recipe I used. Don’t be put off by the long cooking time. The recipe requires no prep time and will fill your kitchen with a warm, homey aroma (which will make you understand why porridge figured so prominently in all of those fairy tales). You do need to keep stirring, so it is best to have it bubbling away on your stove while you are cooking something else.  This recipe can also be made in a rice cooker, freeing you up to do anything you want as it cooks itself.

The great thing about this recipe is that it is low in FODMAPs, which means that it is perfect for anyone who digestive issues. In other words, you can eat this and not worry about it causing gas or setting off a sensitive system.  Amaranth is also a great grain to eat if you are avoiding gluten.

Experiment with your favorite toppings. I tend to be a habitual eater, so my breakfasts usually include some warmed up frozen organic blueberries, some hemp seed and some flaxseed. I also added chopped walnuts which seems to pair nicely with the sweet and earthy flavor of the porridge.

Also remember, bio-individuality! What tastes delicious to me might not work for you. My husband tried it and declared, “it tastes like dirt.” He is obviously not yet a “health nut”!

Here is the recipe:

  • Creamy Amaranth Porridge


You will find more healthy breakfast ideas here:

Like what you read? Maybe it is time for you to take a step toward creating vibrant health for yourself. I will work side by side with you to achieve your health goals, whether that be having a trouble-free digestive system, reducing pain, losing weight, having more energy or getting better sleep. Get started today! Click here to sign up for your health breakthrough session.