These are from the American Council on Exercise’s latest (or almost latest) journal:

Paleo Diet:

Green tea:

More Fall Food

October 28, 2011

I don’t know about you but Fall is my favorite time of year to eat. I love the foods that become available at this time of year. I love the yummy foods you can make from them. Since I am a bit empty-headed on ideas for fitness topics this week, I thought I’d share some links with recipes I recently got in my inbox. Enjoy and happy Friday!


(If you cannot tell, I’m a subscriber to Natural Pantry, the free weekly newsletter from Whole Living Magazine. Yum!)




Trying to avoid the flu? Eat your vitamins!


Want a healthier kitchen? Find out how here:











Four commercial types of Triticeae cultivars: wheat gluten flour, European spelt, barley corns, rolled rye. Wikipedia.

What is the difference? An allergy is an immune response to a food protein, where the body mistakes the protein for something harmful. Tagged with Immunoglobulin E (IgE), the body undergoes a reaction, mild to life-threatening, manifesting in dermititis, gastrointestinal and respiratory distress, etc. An intolerance, on the other hand, is a negative reaction, often delayed, that produces symptoms in one or more parts of the body (skin, organs, etc.) but where IgE antibodies are not present. Amongst the culprits are the food or beverage itself, or a food additive or compound found within what you eat.


Thus, I come to the reason for my post. With the percentage of food allergies and intolerance on the rise (in some cases, it is skyrocketing), I have come to think that it is not so much what we eat but what we do to our food that has caused this surge. I, myself, have discovered that I’m gluten intolerant. I do not have Celiac Disease, an immuno-reaction to gluten of most/all forms. I have friends who do have it, who say they cannot have anything starchier than rice. While I do not suffer the severe reactions they have when they encounter gluten (if the reactions appear at all; they say that 97% of patients with CD go un-diagnosed), eating products comprised of wheat and several other grains cause me problems. One of the most annoying side effects is the sheer lethargy and sleepiness that takes hold of me shortly after consuming something with wheat in it. (I have been tested, by the way, but do not quite trust the test results as the hospital isn’t really equipped to deal with such specialties, and studies show that more than one factor may be the cause of CD.)


Now, I’m not saying that wheat or other grains with the gluten-protein gliadin are bad. They aren’t. They just upset my gastrointestinal system. If you can eat it, do so. Sometimes, I choose to eat something that I know will affect me later anyway. What I have found, however, is that foods that are unprocessed do not mess me up nearly so badly.


My point then is that the processing that our food undergoes may be a big player in the rise in food-related allergies and intolerance. There are studies that clearly show that processed foods contribute to bodily diseases. Why not allergies and intolerance too?


If you are unsure whether or not you have an intolerance (allergies usually make themselves pretty well known), there is a simple way to find out: go off one single food (milk, wheat, soy, etc.) for 2-4 weeks. Then slowly reintroduce it into your diet. See if anything changes. If you notice negative side effects, it is best to find an alternative food and limit/cut out the culprit as much as is possible. This means: read all labels while grocery shopping; find cookbooks that address your specific needs; talk with waiters when you go out for other options. The result will be a happier, healthier you. As I have often joked with my husband, who really wants to be so well preserved due to the things they eat when they die that when an archaeologist digs you up 1000 years later, he can see all your flaws?


For more information on Celiac Disease:

For more information on gluten sensitivity:

For more information on lactose intolerance:


There are many more out there, including sucrose and fructose intolerance, so read thoroughly and carefully. Be mindful. Never assume you have something. You may or you may not. The number one way to benefit yourself is to do your research!

Selection of large pumpkins. Wikipedia.

When we think of winter squash, the orange rounded bodies of Jack-o-lanterns come to mind. (Not the ones with carved faces. This is what a carving pumpkin is called.) Members of the Curcurbitaceae family, they come in various shapes, sizes, colors, and flavors, and have common characteristics like hardened shells that are difficult to pierce, which enable them to have long storage periods (1-6 months). Their hollow cavities also give us a favorite snack: pumpkin seeds.

Varieties include the acorn, butternut, Hubbard, spaghetti, and turban squash; “Jack-o-lanterns”, Cinderella, Japanese (also known as kabocha), mini, and pie pumpkins. Interestingly, as fun as that common pumpkin is to carve, it is known for being rather uninteresting to a cook.

Winter squash are excellent sources of carotenes, vitamins, C and B1, folic acid, pantothenic acid, potassium, and dietary fiber. They are also a good source of riboflavin, niacin, iron, and vitamin B6. Beyond these basics, other health benefits include having a protective effect against many cancers–lung cancer in particular– and heart disease. Diets rich in carotenes also appear to ward off the development of adult-onset diabetes (Type II), and age-related vision loss as it is a source of lutein, a carotenoid linked to reducing the risk of cataracts and macular degeneration. The seeds of pumpkins have been shown to reduce symptoms of benign prostate hyperplasia (BPH). A variety of Hubbard squash. Wikipedia.They are rich in vitamin E, iron, magnesium, and zinc, and provide essential and unsaturated fatty acids (good fats).

When choosing winter squash (and pumpkins), inspect the vegetable carefully for signs of decay and mildew or mold. Choose squash that are firm, heavy for their size, and have dull, not glossy, rinds that are also hard (as soft rinds may indicate that the squash is watery and lacking in flavor). As winter squash has a longer storage life than summer squash, it may last longer than a month and should be kept in from direct exposure to sunlight and to temperatures that are either extremely hot or cold.

Once cut, winter squash can be wrapped in plastic wrap and stored in the refrigerator for up to two days (3-5 days if cooked); or can be frozen in pieces suitable for individual recipes. Canned pumpkin puree (notpumpkin pie filling) is both convenient and a rich,

Kabocha (Japanese squash/pumpkin). Wikipedia.

low-fat source of pumpkin nutrients. Although denser than homemade mashed pumpkin due to the reduction process to prevent a watery pumpkin pie, which results in twice as many calories (83 per cup), that same cup also offers 280% of the daily requirement for beta carotene (32 milligrams) and 43% of the recommended daily amount (RDA) for iron.

Some ways to add pumpkin/winter squash into your food:

1. Add chunks into chili

2. Thin canned pumpkin into a soup with broth; season with salt and a dash of cinnamon; and heat; stir in a bit of reduced-fat sour cream and top with roasted pumpkin seeds

3. Stir in pumpkin puree into tomato-based pasta sauces

4. Add minced chipotle peppers, toasted cumin, lime juice, and minced cilantro into pumpkin puree and serve as a dip with tortilla chips

5. Cook squash halves, pierced in several locations to allow steam to escape, at 350 degree F. for 45-60 minutes; top with butter and maple syrup or brown sugar

6. Substitute spaghetti squash for the pasta by baking/steaming it for 30-45 minutes until the rind is soft; cut lengthwise and remove the strands; serve with sauce

Spaghetti squash, prepared. Wikipedia.

7. Mash pumpkin or other squashes (acorn or butternut, etc.) and eat as such or add in bread, cake, muffin and pie recipes

8. Combine pureed, cooked winter squash with applesauce and serve alone as a pudding-like desert; or a topping for pancakes, waffles, and oatmeal (I’ve also added pumpkin into pancake/waffle recipes)

Be creative and enjoy the harvest season!

Information taken from:

1. The Encyclopedia of Healing Foods. Murray, Michael, N.D.; Pizzorno, Joseph, N.D.; and Pizzorno, Lara, M.A., L.M.T. Atria Books, New York, NY, 2005; p. 234-236.

2. Welness Foods A to Z: An indispensable guide for health-conscious food lovers. Margen, Sheldon, M.D.; and the editors of the U.C. Berkeley Wellness Letters. Rebus, New York, NY, 2002; p. 494-496.