Monday, August 30, 2010

Fresh Picks

This week's market buys. Fresh, local, organic.

Sprouts have great nutritional properties. Just take the case of broccoli sprouts, it is better than a full-grown broccoli because it contains more of the enzyme "sulforaphane" that helps protect cells and prevents the body's genes from turning into cancer. I bought sunflower sprouts, rich in lecithin and vitamin D, sunflower sprouts have the power to break fatty acids and lead to easy digestion. I used to have a sprouting factory in my kitchen and with moving to this new house in just 2 days (eek!), I plan to get my operation up and going. Stay stuned for more on sprouting......

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Sweet Potato Peach Muffins

We made these muffins yesterday for our co-op backyard camp. They were a big hit with the kids. I love healthy options that are super easy to make and kiddies gobble up.
1 cup mashed sweet potato (I baked 2 sweet potatos the night before and simply mashed them the next moring)
1/2 cup mashed peaches (I used fresh peaches as these are in season but I think you can use any watery fruit ie. canned pineapple)
2 eggs
1/3 cup sugar
2 cups whole wheat flour (I would use any flour ie. spelt, or gluten free alternative)
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
3 tbsp. ground flax
2 tsp cinnamon
Preheat oven to 375F. Mix sweet potato, peaches, eggs and sugar. Add in flour, baking powder, baking soda, ground flax and cinnamon. Bake for 16-20 minutes. I put them in mini muffin trays so I reduce the baking time to 10-12 minutes. I usually just watch them until they are golden brown on top.

Monday, August 16, 2010

For the Love of Sucking

My children love to suck. Aidan started sucking his finger when he was 12 months. We were in Florida and thought it was the funniest thing and once he discovered how to do it there was no turning back. (He has since released the middle finger from his nose.)
We talk about it daily and I would have thought that nearing 5 he would diminish this act but there seems to be no end in sight. So, when Bella came along I gave her a soother. Not sure if that was the right thing to do but 2 finger suckers seemed unimaginable. Now she is quite attached to the soother. If she really wants it and I don't give it to her she just begins to suck her finger as her brother does. She does not discriminate the suck. Smart girl.

I began researching sucking in children. I found an interesting article involving tribal cultures and how no finger sucking exists in these cultures. As long as the babies and children can suck at the nipple as freely as they wish, which they usually do until 7 yrs. old, then there is no need to finger suck. Well, being self employed my nipples had to come with me to work (even if it was only 2 half days per week) when my children were 4 months old. Yet, my children were fed on demand, nursed through the night and co-slept in their infancy.

Dr. Spock says " the main reason that young babies suck their thumbs seems to be that they haven't had enough sucking at the breast or bottle to satisfy their sucking needs". I do not agree with this statement for my kids as Aidan nursed for 18 months and I nursed him whenever he wanted during the day and in the night to help get back to sleep. Bella still nurses and she is 2.5 yrs.

There is a lot of information on sucking and its self soothing abilties as well as how emotional children need to suck to reduce anxiety levels. I can see this for Aidan but not as much for Bella. Let us remember that sucking is a natural instinct, a survival technique that babies are born with so they feed and survive. We seem to think that this primal instinct should disappear when our babies are 6 months old. In western culture we think at 6 months these tiny beings have reached a new milestone and that they should lose that need to suck, when in fact they are still very much babies.

Lastly, there is information about intelligence and the need to suck. How the sucking reflex stimulates brain development and thus raises the babies IQ's. I'll go with that theory!
Well for now, they love to suck (and they love each other!) and no matter how much we discuss it they are going to suck until they decide they are done with sucking. The bottom line is it is something I have no control over as I can't cut their fingers off.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

The Sting

Aidan was walking in the park and stepped on a wasp and got stung! For those who know Aidan, you know how sensitive he is and one thing he can not deal with is, pain. Poor guy was screaming and could not be consoled. We quickly went home and got some Apis. This remedy is indicated for any stinging or burning sensation which he obviously had. After a single dose (!) and a spiderman sock to shield his foot the screaming stopped and we were able to resume our morning in the park.

I am putting together homeopathic first aid me if interested.

What Me?? A UTI?

I was suprised when at the beginning of the week I was exhibiting signs of a Urinary Tract Infection (UTI). I was having urgency and after a few trips to the bathroom with not much volume I finally clued in. I pulled out my dipsticks and low and behold within seconds white blood cells and blood were obviously and quite potently present.

And so it began.....Every 20 minuted I cycled my remedies and after 1.5 hours the relief had kicked in. I kept with my plan for the next few days and I would say 3 days later my symptoms were gone and my dipsticks were clear! Antibiotics did not even crosss my mind and they were not needed.

My Plan:
1. Water, Water and more Water. I normally only drink water and tea (herbal but occassionally I do love Chai). However in the past few months I have not been drinking or been too busy to drink so my intake has been less.
2. Homemade Cranberry Juice. I boil some frozen berries in water, blend and strain. So Easy and affordable. I drank about 8 oz of puree/day.
3. UNDA # 2, 7, 44. These are homeopathic liquid remedies geared for the kidney and urinary system. They are safe in pregnancy, children and those on medication but always check with your ND before using.
4.D-Mannose- this powder is amazing as it kills the bacteria (mainly E.Coli) by washing them away from the urinary wall. Tastes great too! I took a few tsp per day. This is what I give Bella every morning to ensure a clean bladder due to her history of frequent UTI's.
5. Acidophilus- 2 caps per day to put those good guys back!!
6. Citricidal- 2 tab per day to kill those bad guys!
7. Botanical Tincture- I have a botancial dispensery in my home office, so convenient when I need to make something quickly! I whipped up a urinary cleanse tincture at 11 pm!
8. Cantharis- a major remedy for UTI. Took a few doses on the first day.