Wellness

Keto-rific Chicken Tenders

Lately, I’ve been experimenting with the ketogenic lifestyle for brain health purposes. The husband wanted to lose some Christmas weight, so having him on board has helped me to dive in and try new recipes. We typically eat Paleoish and Ketoish at our house anyway, just because we feel good on whole food, but going completely grain free and refined sugar free (and alcohol free) has taken things to the next level.

Spoiler alert – 3 weeks in and we feel amazing. Both of us are sleeping like rocks. I’m full and fueled throughout my day, and my mood is leveled. Now, this all could have to do with a new adaptogenic herb-based product we’re taking, but I think the nutritional changes affect soooo much!

I found this recipe for chicken tenders in the book Keto Quick Start, available here. I followed the instructions completely except chose to use ghee to cook the tenders in, and it was a perfect addition! The flavor on these tenders are crispy on the outside and juicy on the inside. They weren’t dry at all, like some chicken tenders I’ve tried in the past. If coconut is a problem for you, you could probably bread them in almond flour and they’d still be tasty. But man, that flaked coconut fried in ghee left over on the pan is just mouthwatering!

All 5 family members loved them and ate them up. Do you know how tricky that can be???

img_7670

 

Ingredients:

1/4 cup ghee (or grass-fed butter or coconut oil or avocado oil)

1 1/2 cups unsweetened shredded coconut

2 tablespoons coconut flour

1/2 tablespoon garlic powder

1/2 tablespoon pink Himalayan sea salt

1/2 tablespoon pepper

2 teaspoons paprika

2 eggs

2 pounds chicken tenders (or slice boneless skinless breasts into strips)

 

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 375°. Line a baking sheet with foil, then place a wire baking rack on top and set aside.

2. Place a large sauté pan on medium heat. Use enough ghee to coat the bottom of the pan and get it completely melted and hot

3. Create a breading station (I use two round cake pans). In one bowl, whisk the eggs. In the other, mix the coconut flour and flakes and spices.

4. Dip a piece of chicken in the egg, then in the flour mixture to coat completely.

5. Place in hot pan and cook 3-4 minutes on each side and transfer to wire rack. Start working in batches until all tenders are lightly browned and on the rack. I promise it’ll go faster than you think!

6. Put in oven for 15 minutes and be sure to check the inside of the thickest one to make sure they’re cooked through.

7. Serve on top of greens for a salad (they’re wonderful with a homemade balsamic/oil/Dijon dressing), or with other colorful veggies on the side. Sweet potato fries would be tasty as well!

img_7736

My Business IS Your Business

This month marks the launch of my integrative nutrition coaching business!!!

Yes, I am still promoting the life-changing supplements that I love so dearly!

I am expanding my business to include nutrition for body, mind and soul – something I believe we don’t integrate into our lives nearly enough… but has been so crucial for my personal healing.

Last year I went through a program at my church called Repurposed that helped me assess the patterns and passions of my life so far. It was so eye-opening to see repeated themes.

img_7406

What I know – I am a TEACHER, number one. I want to inspire people to think differently and learn something about themselves they didn’t know.

What I want YOU to know – I share my story, not because it’s a one size fits all solution to every similar story, but because there are tools we can all implement to live fuller, brighter, purpose-filled lives.

We are three-in-one uniquely designed beings – body, mind, and soul. I would love to partner with you to discover how to spark wholeness in your life.

My 2019 word of the year is SOAR. Soar means to maintain height without flapping wings or using engine power.

In 2019, I want to depend less on my own wing-flapping and engine power and focus on HIS power. I want to rise above fear and negativity and maintain distance from them. I want every move I make to be a reflection of the grace and peace and FREEDOM I have been given as a child of God, and I so desperately want you to experience this true freedom as well, in every area of your life.

Learning from my December Lows

The hardest part about living with a chronic illness is living with a chronic illness.

Meaning, I have to be aware of my triggers, the things that make me sick, at all times. Excess busyness, excess activity, excess inflammatory foods and alcohol… all those things are difficult to escape in December… but they take a toll on me in ways most people don’t have to worry about.

I go big. I love parties. I love people. I love LIVING life. Until it all becomes too much, and I crash.

This last week I felt a crash. Minimal crash compared to the destructive collisions of the past. I have an excellent support system, I am self-aware, and I am learning to communicate when I need help. So to be clear, I am OKAY. But I knew something was off. I thought I was getting sick. My chest felt tight like I couldn’t breathe, my body felt heavy, and I couldn’t get through my typical yoga practice without taking multiple child poses to rest. I didn’t want to do anything. I didn’t want to read my new nutrition book (big sign something was off). I was negative with my husband and my kids, who I love more than the world.

photography of barrel wave
Crash: (noun) a sudden failure which puts a system out of action

Continue reading “Learning from my December Lows”

Ancestor’s Stew

The blood of my ancestors is in this crock pot stew. Kidding. But seriously, I did some DNA testing a while back and found out I’m 50% British/Irish… so there is really nothing better for me than beef stew (other than whisky of course – kidding again)!

Stew is a comfort food for me. I spent many, many years hating beef, but I always loved the stew my grandma made. I think she would be pretty proud of this recipe I concocted, as I once told her I would never ever cook with raw meat (it totally disgusted me).

img_6628

I used beef bone broth as the base (because gut health), switched out extra potatoes for a turnip and some radishes, and added my favorite herbs – oregano, thyme, and ROSEMARY. Continue reading “Ancestor’s Stew”

Being Med-Free: My 4 Year Anniversary

They told me I’d need medication the rest of my life.

4 years ago this week, I was weaned off my last medication, 10 milligrams of Celexa. I had vertigo for 3 weeks. Some days I felt like I was riding a roller coaster. After 18 years of being medicated, it wasn’t an easy transition for my body.

My doctor said I was ready. I was eating healthier, working out regularly, and sleeping consistently. I would never have done this without her support. This wasn’t the typical bipolar action of, “Hey, I’m going off all my meds!” It was something that took years in the making. It wasn’t a decision anyone took lightly.

It took time to adjust. I needed to actively monitor my stress levels. I needed to remember to slow down and rest. I took my supplements diligently. I ran. A year and a half later, I found yoga.

Today I feel better than I ever have.

img_6299

Continue reading “Being Med-Free: My 4 Year Anniversary”

Gut-Friendly Breakfast Cookies

My kids LOVE sugar and gluten. But their guts don’t. So I was thrilled when I first discovered this recipe for breakfast cookies that are free of sugar, gluten AND dairy (depending on the chocolate chips you use)! I’ve made a few tweaks to the original recipe, and I have to say, they’re pretty dang good!

img_6247

Start by mashing up bananas with a fork and then add the coconut oil and vanilla. From there, dump in the dry ingredients and mix it all around with a fork. I never even need to use a spoon, and hey – that’s one last thing to load in the dishwasher right? Check out this happy banana-masher I had today:

img_6245

Oats are a little controversial for some, as they can potentially contain gluten if they aren’t labeled “gluten free.” But there are many studies that link oats with the growth of beneficial bacteria in the gut, which is always something I’m a fan of! The walnuts in this cookie are a nice brain-boosting touch, and you could also add in dried fruit or even blueberries, another brain-boosting food.

The chocolate chips do add some sugar, but it’s minimal when you consider the typical breakfast food item for kids these days. It’s hard to find chocolate chips free of soy, gluten and dairy. I like the Enjoy Life brand or Lily’s because they contain stevia! Continue reading “Gut-Friendly Breakfast Cookies”

Spaghetti for Mutants

Have you heard of MTHFR? Nope, it’s not an abbreviation for a bad word (and yes that’s an overused joke). It’s a genetic mutation a large percentage of the population (estimated to be 40-60%) carries. I won’t get all science-y here since this is a recipe post, but this article breaks it down really well.

I have one copy of this mutation, and because of this, I have chosen to remove folic acid completely from my diet – and my kids’ diets. Because of my boys’ tongue and lip ties, I suspect they have it as well, so I don’t want to take any chances.

Here’s the problem – folic acid is in EVERYTHING. Bread, cereal, supplements, enriched wheat… and pasta. Even those beloved Cheerios, people!

We haven’t eaten traditional whole wheat pasta in a long time for the gluten and inflammation reason, and there are some really great gluten-free pasta alternatives out there, but I always feel like if a veggie can substitute, do the veggie.

img_5957

Continue reading “Spaghetti for Mutants”