Killing Them Softly

The Killing Two days ago I witnessed the slaughtering of some of our chickens on the ranch. They were the meat chickens we’ve taken care of since we started living on the Spencer Shadow Ranch. Although I’m usually a mama bear to all of our animals, here I was wearing a red apron over my faded jeans and thick muck boots, ready to slit the throats of my very own birds. I had been emotionally preparing myself for this event for the last two days. I felt it was my duty to do the killing since I was going to eat one of them for dinner. But when our friend and owner of the ranch, Doug, told me he was planning to do it, I breathed a sigh of relief and quickly walked over to the eviscerating station so I wouldn’t have to watch. This was a different method than [...]

July 17th, 2016|Categories: Nutrition, Uncategorized|Tags: , , , , , |2 Comments

Moldovan Home Remedies: Traditional Wisdom or Snake Oil?

Although I've lived in the US for over ten years, only recently have I been more open about what makes my country of birth different from the country I currently share with my husband. As an 18 year old, I quickly picked up on the fact that talking about slaughtering chickens, using an outhouse, or the absence of running water made people look at me differently. When you are trying to make friends and fit in, it's the last thing you want. So I put my background behind me and began the assimilation process.  I was a precocious young woman, so I learned quickly what sorts of topics to discuss, how to carry myself, and what would make me more likeable. I don't regret choosing to assimilate into American culture. Some of that was necessary to really grasp and appreciate the culture I have chosen to live in. Yet, since getting married, I have began sharing my stories and the world [...]

March 31st, 2015|Categories: Nutrition|Tags: , , , , , |9 Comments

Traditional Detox: Not What You’d Expect

Yesterday I asked my readers on Facebook what foods come to mind when they think "liver cleanse". Here are some of the responses: fruit, lemon water, milk thistle, dandelion salad, kombucha, beet juice, cabbage, olive oil, citrus, nettles, tumeric. These are all wonderfully cleaning foods, but we are missing a few key players. This list is missing  meat, eggs, and dairy. Are you shocked? Stay with me and I can explain  why I am adding such "heavy", "clogging" foods to a detox food list. Image source My Story A few  years ago I decided I needed to seriously detox my body. I was newbie to the whole foods movement and after reading that, the average newborn baby has 287 known toxins in his or her umbilical cord blood (Source), I became concerned. I couldn't stop thinking about all the toxins I was carrying around with me all the time. My poor liver [...]

April 15th, 2014|Categories: Nutrition|Tags: , , |1 Comment

Dairy Intolerance: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Did you know that although more than 50 millions Americans are lactose intolerant, more than 70% of them don't relate their symptoms to the ingestion of lactose. Why? Because everyone seems to have a different reaction to a dairy intolerance, some symptoms being more obvious than others. A few days ago I asked my dairy-free readers on The Kitchen Rag's Facebook page if they had any other symptoms besides diarrhea, flatulence, bloatedess, or cystic acne - the more classic symptoms of a dairy intolerance- when they ingested dairy products. Here are some of their answers: The Bad "Oozing rash across the back of my fingers. Found out about lactose intolerance after a break from it. I still flirt with it sometimes, as it's hard to resist! Most immediate symptom seems to be the whole surface of my scalp seems to jump off within 24 hours... Not too pretty!" "Pain in my joints. Completely dairy [...]

January 14th, 2014|Categories: Nutrition|Tags: , , |0 Comments

Gluten Intolerance: You’re Next in Line

Did you know that: 1) The delicious bagels, doughnuts, Challah bread, and fluffy cakes you eat are not made with the same wheat your grandparents ate. 2) The incidence of Celiac disease and gluten intolerance in the US has increased 4x since 1950. 3) My mother can't eat American wheat. As you might suspect, all these statements are very much related, and in what follows I will show you why. But first let's talk about my background for a second. A Hunk of Bread in One Hand... I was born in the Republic of Moldova, in Eastern Europe, on a small farm. In my culture bread is considered holy and we believe it is a sin to throw it away. If bread goes moldy, we scrape the mold off and feed it to our animals, not the trash can. This reverence we have towards bread comes from the fact that [...]

December 1st, 2013|Categories: Nutrition|Tags: , , |6 Comments

Why Is Extra Virgin Olive Oil Better than Regular Olive Oil?

My interest in olive oil began a few months ago when I picked up Tom Mueller's book " The Sublime and Scandalous World of Olive Oil" which I highly recommend.  Before, even up to six months ago, I would randomly pick up a medium priced olive oil bottle that was labeled organic and would regularly shake my head at the ridiculously high price of the dark slender bottle of extra virgin olive juice next to it. "Who buys this stuff?!" I thought. Now I know, an informed public who knows the real value of extra virgin olive oil. Here is what convinced me to start buying extra virgin olive oil. Did you hear? A daily dose of extra virgin olive oil may act as a natural pain reliever! According to Beauchamp, "newly pressed extra-virgin olive oil contains oleocanthal--a compound whose pungency induces a strong stinging sensation in the throat, not [...]

August 4th, 2013|Categories: Nutrition|Tags: |0 Comments

Is Your Olive Oil Adulterated with Rancid Vegetable Oil?

Your olive oil is adulterated with rancid vegetable oil. While the FDA is too busy closing down honest farmers selling raw milk, the olive oil industry is run by a veritable mafia, making millions by cheating their customers. Why You Should Eat Olive Oil Olive oil has many of the health benefits touted by doctors and the media alike . In fact numerous studies have shown that olive oil protects you from heart disease, balances fatty acids in your body, reduces inflammation, and promotes healthy digestion. All these wonderful healing properties are due to the powerful combination of monounsaturated fats and unique polyphenols it contains. Many scientists and nutritionists attribute the longevity of Greeks and Italians to the high amount of fresh, high quality olive oil they consume on a daily basis.   The Mediterranean diet is associated with a lower incidence of atherosclerosis, cardiovascular disease, neurodegenerative diseases and certain types of [...]

July 7th, 2013|Categories: Nutrition|Tags: , , |3 Comments

What Is Reactive Hypoglycemia?

"What do you mean dinner isn't ready yet?", I ask in an aggressive, irritated tone and I can feel my eyes flooding with tears. I am trying to stay calm but I am so angry. My husband has seen this before. "When was the last time you ate?", he asks as he hands me a few slices of cheese.I grab the food with shaky fingers and wolf it down. I close my eyes and wait for the surge of glucose through my blood stream. I am breathing steadily again. My anger, along with my pounding headache are slowly going away. "About four hours ago.", I say."That's too long, sweetie." he says gently as he is leading me to the couch."I know, I know." I retort sadly,  "I just wish I could last without food for a couple of hours and not turn into a monster!" Have you experienced this before? How about confusion, irritability, impatience, shakiness or [...]

March 18th, 2013|Categories: Nutrition|Tags: , , , |19 Comments

The Alkaline Diet – Snake Oil or Common Sense?

There are a lot of fad diets out there. Often, they claim to be the ultimate healing regime. They will cure you of disease or cancer, melt the extra pounds right off your midriff, or make you look ten years younger. As soon as I start reading something that tells me that once I perform one special routine or purchase certain brands, I will start feeling amazing and all my health problems will go away, I move on. Some of these schemes have some great things to offer, but I am skeptical of their good intentions. A couple of years ago an obnoxious website completely turned off any interest I had in the Alkaline Diet. Thankfully, I began studying  more about the pH balance of foods in one of my nutrition classes, and, while I admit I was rather skeptical at first, what I have learned just might have changed my mind. [...]

February 20th, 2013|Categories: Nutrition|Tags: , , , , , , , |5 Comments

Is Taking Doctor Mercola’s Nutritional Typing Test Helpful?

Recently, I had to take doctor Mercola's nutritional type test and assess the results for one of my nutrition classes. There are three categories one may fall into: High protein: high density, high fat, high protein diet. High carb: high carb, low fat, low protein diet. Mixed: both high fat and high carb foods.   If you haven't had a chance to take it, I recommend it. You can take it online here. You have to sign up to get his newsletter in order to take it, but the test is free of charge. I am not recommending it because I am a follower of this sort of nutritional typing. But I have found that having to take a test about my eating habits has made me think more thoroughly about what I eat on a daily basis. What I Learned All my life I have struggled with hypoglycemia. Recently I have found that [...]

January 25th, 2013|Categories: Nutrition|Tags: |8 Comments
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