Archive for the 'Conscious Eating' Category

Berry-Licious Baked Oatmeal for Snowy Mornings

Feb. 22nd 2015

When Mother Nature dumps an insane amount of snow – over 91 inches – within a few weeks, you simply have to embrace it.

My perfect snow day includes a simmering pot of soup and a great read by the fire. After the storm, when the sky is brilliant blue against the stark whiteness of the snow, this Baked Oatmeal is the bomb before heading out snowshoeing.

Here’s to embracing winter!

Baked Oatmeal 7


Baked Berry-Licious Oatmeal
Hearty and slightly sweet this Baked Oatmeal is morning comfort food for body and soul.

2 cups rolled oats*
3/4 cup chopped pecans
1/3 cup maple syrup (optional)**
1 teaspoon aluminum-free baking powder
2 teaspoons cinnamon
scant 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
2 cups coconut milk
1 large egg
3 tablespoons melted coconut oil
1 tablespoon bourbon vanilla extract
3 cups frozen mixed berries
2 bananas sliced
1/4 cup unsweetened flaked coconut (optional)

Preheat oven to 375°.
Grease 8×8 baking dish with coconut oil.

Combine oats, 1/2 cup of the pecans, baking powder, cinnamon and salt in a bowl. Set aside. In another bowl, lightly beat egg. Stir in maple syrup, coconut milk, coconut oil and vanilla. Place sliced bananas on bottom of dish. Layer berries over the bananas. Spread oats on top of berries. Slowly pour coconut mixture over oats. Smash down a bit with the back of a spoon to ensure all of the oats are coated by the coconut milk mixture. Sprinkle remaining 1/4 cup chopped pecans and flaked coconut on top. Bake for 35-45 minutes until golden in color.

*Make sure you use regular oats and not instant oats. I love Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free Oats in this recipe.

**I’ve made this recipe both with and without the maple syrup. Either way it’s delicious!

This healthy breakfast also makes a wonderful snack.

Oats are one of my favorite grains. Energetically, they warm and strengthen the body which is so important during the winter months. Oats lower cholesterol levels, stabilize blood sugar and help to regulate thyroid function. Considered an adaptogen, they help to keep the body in balance by improving our response to stress. Throw in those antioxidant rich berries and you have a breakfast practically guaranteed to give you super powers!






Posted by Deborah Buell | in Blog, Breakfast / Brunch, Brunch, Conscious Eating, Gluten Free, Healthy Eating, Recipes, Winter | Comments Off

Are You Hungry?

Apr. 8th 2013

1 in 5 children in the United States don’t have enough to eat.  They don’t know when or where they will get their next meal.  Think about that for a moment.  1 out of every 5 kids hungry right here in the “land of plenty.   1 out of every 5 kids hungry  in a country that actually throws away close to half of the food it produces.

What about SNAP, formerly known as food stamps?  Those that can’t afford to buy groceries can get assistance through SNAP, right?  Did you know that SNAP participants are allotted only $4.00 daily?

Why is this issue so important?  From ShareOurStrength:

  • Children who are hungry have difficulties concentrating and performing in school.
  • Children who regularly do not get enough nutritious food to eat have significantly higher levels of behavioral, emotional and academic problems and be more aggressive and anxious.
  • Teens who regularly do not get enough to eat are more likely to be suspended from school and have difficulty getting along with other kids.
  • Children who struggle with hunger are sick more often, recover more slowly, and are more likely to be hospitalized.
  • Children who face hunger are more susceptible to obesity and its harmful health consequences as children and as adults.
What can you do?
Tell Congress that children in America should not go hungry.  Link
Watch the documentary  A Place At the Table  as it chronicles three families who suffer from food insecurity.
Can you eat healthy, nutritious meals on just $4.00?  Give it a try!





Posted by Deborah Buell | in Blog, Conscious Eating, Healthy Eating | Comments Off

Ditch the Winter Cleanse

Jan. 25th 2013

It’s super trendy and it seems that everyone is doing it these days. Cleansing. Not me. Nope. Cleansing in the midst of winter feels counterintuitive. I truly believe that if it feels wrong, then I should honor those feelings. I have a hunch I’m not the only one that has said “no” to the mass messages of starting the New Year with a cleanse.

Many cleanses are liquid based – Master Cleanse and juice cleanses for example. Others rely heavily on raw foods. Neither of which will keep me from shivering all day long when the high is forecast to be 17 degrees! Give me soup, roasted vegetables, warming spices and the occasional hot chocolate (made with almond milk of course). I advocate eating clean during the winter and cleansing in the spring which follows the natural rhythms of the seasons and is better for our bodies.

Here are my top tips for eating clean during the winter:

  1. Drink water. Especially first thing in the morning. It helps to flush all toxins out of our cells. Do this every day! Adding lemon gives you a nice dose of vitamin C, which helps boost your immune system and supports detoxification. I recommend  heating your water and letting it cool slightly before adding the lemon, as the heat will compromise the vitamin C.
  2. Cook at home.  Roast, steam, stir-fry.  Incorporate healthy fats like coconut oil, olive oil and avocado to reduce winter dryness.
  3. Use warming spices like cinnamon, turmeric, allspice, nutmeg, clove, and ginger to add flavor and ignite your inner fire.
  4. As it is the season of reflection and going inward, try journaling either first thing in the morning or just before bed.  Turn off your inner editor and just let the words fly.  No need to worry about grammar or spelling.
  5. Get plenty of sleep. Winter is a time for hibernation. Fall into the groove by going to bed a little earlier.
You’ll be amazed at how good you feel!

Posted by Deborah Buell | in Blog, Conscious Eating, Healthy Eating, Winter | Comments Off

Size Does Matter

Sep. 17th 2012

I found myself at a local market that boasts “the best salad bar on the Northshore” on my way to the hospital to visit a dear friend and her newborn child.  It had been five days since she was admitted.  No one should have to eat that much hospital food!  My mission was to bring something she would actually want to eat.

The salad bar offerings were healthy and fresh without a lot of the mayonnaise based salads commonly found.  The containers, however, were huge!   As I made my way around the salad bar filling the container, I realized that I had just constructed what could possibly be the world’s biggest salad.   Okay, maybe not the world’s biggest, but certainly too big for just one person.  I grabbed extra utensils and justified the super-sized salad with the thought that if the hubby was around, there would be plenty to share.

Here’s the lesson.  Size matters.  The larger the bowl, the plate or the cup – the more you will eat.

While I was attending the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, one of the popular books at that time was Mindless Eating by Brian Wansink, Ph.D.  In Mindless Eating,  Wansink’s research illuminates the fact that if it is there, we will eat it.  In one experiment, moviegoers were given either a medium or very large bucket of popcorn.  Those given the very large bucket ate 50 percent more than those given the medium size bucket.  Both groups reported eating the same amount of popcorn.  In fact, in another experiment, moviegoers were given 14 day-old popcorn in either medium or large buckets.  The large bucket people ate 31 percent more stale popcorn than those with medium buckets.  Again, both groups reported eating the same amount.  Experiment after experiment, Dr Wansink found that the larger the plate, the more people ate.

So, how can we overcome the tendency to overeat when faced with today’s extra large plates and bowls?

  1. Eat at the table.  When we eat in front of the television or computer, our attention is focused on what we are watching, not on how much we are eating.
  2. Give Thanks.  Pause before diving in to your plate and give thanks to the farmers who grew your food; the animals that gave their lives for your nourishment; the truck drivers who transported the food; and the store employees who stocked the shelves.
  3. Take a breath.   A deep breath relaxes the nervous system and physiologically  prepares your digestive system to absorb more nutrients from the food you eat.
  4. Slow down.  If you eat fast, try keeping pace with the person who eats the slowest.  Remember, it takes 20 minutes for your brain to figure out that you’re no longer hungry.
  5. Practice being fully present.  Really look at your food – colors and textures.  Take in the aroma.  Notice how it feels on your tongue.  What is the initial taste sensation?  What is the lingering taste sensation?  This can be a fun way to teach mindfulness to young children.
  6. Reduce plate size.  Using a 10-inch plate instead of a 12-inch plate will reduce consumption by about 20%.  Most people eat about 90% of what is on their plate.
  7. Learn what 80% full feels like.  Hint:  satisfied not stuffed.
  8. If you think you want seconds, wait ten minutes before refilling your plate.
  9. Dim the lights, light a candle, put on soft music and enjoy the conversation and company at the table.
Eating wholesome, freshly prepared foods with people whose company you enjoy is one of life’s greatest pleasures.  Savour it.




Posted by Deborah Buell | in Blog, Conscious Eating, Healthy Eating | Comments Off

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