March 23, 2013

Killer Meat Sauce (SCD, Paleo, GAPS, Meat)



So there is a story behind the title of this one...

The other day in clinic we had a little boy coming in for a wheat food challenge and the bread they brought in for him to eat was called "Killer Bread." No joke. One of my staff made the comment that "I don't think I would be feeding my kids Killer Bread. Maybe if they had called it "Life Sustaining Bread" or something. Which then sparked a debate about the legality of actually claiming such a thing on a product...
So yes the Killer Bread (which if you believe that grains are detrimental to health then you will agree with me when I say that name is very appropriate) is the inspiration for the name of this recipe.
And of course there is no bread or grains of any kind involved.





I don't know about you, but I grew up eating spaghetti. This was one meal that my mom never had to convince us to eat. Now spaghetti is a little different without the noodles of course, but zucchini noodles make a reasonable, grain free, alternative.

Now I have to warn you that there is a lot of chopping involved in this recipe so give yourself some time!

Now you may have a few questions.
Olives? Yep olives. Trust me they are GOOD in spaghetti! And for those of you who don't like olives, well first of all, what is wrong with you? But second, don't knock them until you try them in this sauce! If you still hate them then I have no words. 

And yes I cook the meat in the same pot that I cook the sauce. This way you keep the flavour from the meat fat! Some of you may still be scared of eating too much fat. Now when fats have been linked to atheroscerosis and heart disease, it has been milk fat that has consistently shown this link. Hunter gatherer societies that exist today obtain the majority of their protein from animal fats and they have much lower rates of heart disease and ill health. I promise to write a post discussing just this issue in the future... but for now you will just have to take my word for it! 

As always I would be thrilled if you visited my social media pages on PinterestInstagram and Facebook!

Killer Meat Sauce Recipe


Ingredients

1 package grassfed ground beef (buy here)
1-2 TBSP fat of choice (bacon fat, olive oil or butter/ghee all would be fine)
4 sausages of choice (pork or chicken are both fine) (buy here
8 medium sized tomatoes, diced  (I like on the vine myself, but field or any other type will also do)
1 medium onion, diced (or sub 1 green onion) 
1 package chopped mushrooms
1 green bell pepper, diced
1 yellow bell pepper, diced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 TBSP Italian Seasoning (This brand is SCD legal)  
1 TBSP dried basil  (I use this kind
Sea salt and pepper to taste 
1 can green olives (make sure the ingredients are SCD friendly if this is an issue)
1 can black olives 



Directions

1. Place a large pot on the stove on medium heat. Add the fat and allow to melt. 
2. Add ground beef and start cooking
3. Remove sausages from casings and add the meat to the ground beef
4. Cook until the ground beef is no longer pink
5. While the meat is cooking dice your tomatoes and add to the pot once the beef is cooked
6. Allow meat and tomatoes to simmer together for a few minutes, until tomatoes start to break apart
7. While tomatoes are cooking chop your onion and add to pot once tomatoes are ready, stir well
8. Cook the sauce for a few more minutes (onion should start to go clear)
9. Add the chopped mushrooms and stir well 
10. Chop both your bell peppers and once mushrooms are slightly cooked add to pot and stir well 
11. Add the seasonings and garlic to pot and stir well. Let the sauce simmer for about 15 minutes
12. Add the olives and let simmer for another 10-15 minutes, or until sauce is desired thickness.
13. Serve and enjoy!

** Note: This goes well with zucchini noodles or spaghetti squash.  
** Note: This recipe takes about an hour to make from start to finish so make sure you leave enough time!







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March 17, 2013

If You're Struggling

Some of you out there may be sticking to a true SCD/ Paleo/GAPS diet and still not having total relief of your symptoms. There are a few foods that are allowed on these diets that some people don't seem to tolerate. Some of these I have found through my own trial and error and some have been through the advice of others.
So if you are wondering what you can do try eliminating some of these foods and see how you do!

1. Eggs

And not all eggs are created equally. Some people can tolerate baked eggs, but not eggs in any other form. I seem to tolerate a minimal amount of baked eggs, but not eggs on their own. This was one of my big mistakes when I first started SCD. I used to eat eggs on a daily basis and while my symptoms were definitely better they were still not great. Cutting out eggs has made a huge difference for me. Especially when I am running. Don't ask me why but I would get the worst stomach cramps while running while I was still eating eggs. Anyone else had this experience?

2. Dairy

Unfortunately some people's systems just are not meant to process dairy. This could be for many reasons: lactose intolerance, or reactions to whey or casein. If you are lactose intolerant there are great cheeses (at least in Canada) that are made lactose free. I have never been able to find lactose free cheese in the US so far so I'm sorry to my American readers... if anyone out there knows of a brand I would love to hear from you! Now I only recommend lactose free cheeses. Not yogurt (unless you make your own SCD legal yogurt). It seems that most lactose free yogurts on the market still contain remnants of lactose and are therefore not safe.
Two brands of cheese I have found in Canada that are lactose free are:
1. http://www.fromagerielachaudiere.com/our-organic-cheeses,26
2. http://www.fromagerieancetre.com/Les-fromages.html
Both of these cheeses I buy at Planet Organic in Calgary. I have also seen these at other organic grocery stores in various places across Canada. They do occasionally go on sale so watch out for that as they can be expensive!
Now certain cheese (even with lactose) are allowed on the SCD diet. I have been too scared to try these myself knowing how I previously reacted to dairy before I went lactose free but there are a lot of people out there who can tolerate certain hard cheeses. I will send you to the Breaking the Viscous Cycle website for more information regarding this.

3. Nuts

Again not all nuts are created equally. You may be able to tolerate some nuts, in certain forms but not others. In general nut butters are the easiest to tolerate. Then nut flours. You may also be able to tolerate seeds but not nuts. This one requires a lot of trial and error unfortunately but it is worth it! One other big factor is whether the nuts are roasted or not. I know that I don't tolerate roasted nuts unless I roast them myself. I think this has something to do with the way that companies roast their nuts. But again I would try raw nuts first before progressing to roasted and see if that helps your symptoms. I would also recommend soaking your nuts before using them. There are many resources out there explaining the reasoning behind this. Here is one good source: http://www.thenourishinggourmet.com/2008/07/soaking-nuts.html
Bottom line is that soaking makes the nuts easier to digest. Always a good thing when you have digestive problems!

4. Caffeine

And when I say caffeine I am mainly referring to coffee. WHAT? First you tell me not to eat dairy and now you are taking my coffee away too? Yes I know. You can curse me all you want. Now some people can tolerate small amounts of coffee just fine. But if you are struggling with ongoing diarrhea I highly suggest you cut this out. Caffeine promotes gut transit time so it will only make your symptoms worse. You should still be able to tolerate tea without any troubles. Just make sure to avoid teas with "natural ingredients" on the label. As you know most of these ingredients contain soy. Evil, evil soy.

5. Fibre

What fibre isn't good for you?? Now I am not saying that. But many of the reasons that fibre is recommended is to help promote regular bowel movements. Now if you suffer from chronic diarrhea promoting the passage of intestinal contents is not what you need.
Lauren at Empowered Sustenance talks more about this in her post here:
http://empoweredsustenance.com/are-you-fiber-obsessed/

I know that I don't tolerate fibre well. For this reason I stay away from pretty much all raw vegis and fruits (yes this is sad I know). That being said certain fruits and vegis are definitely more fibrous than others so it will take some trial and error on your part to see what you tolerate.

6. Nightshades

What is a nightshade do you ask?
Well they are potatoes, tomatoes, sweet and hot peppers, eggplant, tomatillos, tamarios, pepinos, pimentos, paprika, and cayenne peppers.
Here I will post a portion of what WHFoods has to say on this topic:
"These vegetables all contain alkaloids, which can impact nerve-muscle function and digestive function in animals and humans, and may also be able to compromise joint function. Because the amount of alkaloids is very low in nightshade foods when compared with other nightshade plants, health problems from nightshade foods may only occur in individuals who are especially sensitive to these alkaloid substances. Since cooking only lowers alkaloid content of nightshade foods by about 40-50%, highly sensitive individuals may want to avoid this category of food altogether, while non-sensitive individuals may be able to eat these foods, especially in cooked form, without problem"
More information on nightshades can be found all over the web. People with various autoimmune diseases seem to be especially sensitive to these vegetables. Again, trial and error will only let you know if you are sensitive or not.



So have I overwhelmed you yet??
That seems like a lot of information I know.
The foods aren't listed in any particular order, as I think that everyone responds differently to different foods so trying to come up with a "try this first" method may not be best for everyone. That being said, cutting out eggs made a huge difference for me, and same for nuts (especially roasted). So based on my experience I might suggest starting there if you are looking for more specific advice. But the rest I will leave up to you! I would suggest eliminating each food for 2-3 weeks before making any decision about how they affect you.

Good luck! Don't get discouraged if you are struggling! You will be able to find an eating plan that works for you!

Does anyone else have any other suggestions? I would love to hear from you!!!

March 16, 2013

Sautéed Beef and Brussel Sprouts (SCD, GAPS, Paleo, Beef)




Hi long lost friends

Sorry for being absent for so long. I have many reasons for being MIA I promise! Right now I am in sunny Palo Alto for an elective in Allergy and Immunology. I am only a week in but so far the experience has been really great! The learning curve is definitely steep though!

Being in the States people always point out my "Canadianisms"
Some examples from this week:

I call it a washroom, not a bathroom
I say sorry way too much
Telling someone the temperature in Celsius and getting a very puzzled look in response
Being shocked at the Valet Parking at the hospital (no we are definitely not in Canada any more folks!)
Looking for a patient's chart and being told it doesn't exist... everything is on the computer now (welcome to the future of medicine)

Well those are the only ones I can think of right now but trust me there have been more!
Enough procrastinating and on to more important things.... like FOOD!

I feel slightly guilty for even calling this one a "recipe" since it is super easy. But also yummy so in my books thats good enough!



Ingredients


1 package organic ground beef (mine was 85% lean) - you can buy this here 
1 package shredded brussel sprouts (or shred about 3 cups worth of whole ones yourself)
1 organic apple, peeled (I used a Pink Lady because they are my favourite! But any apple should do)  
1 medium yellow onion
Sea salt 
Pepper





Directions


1. Place large frying pan/ skillet on burner and turn to medium heat
2. Place a few tablespoons of desired fat in pan (I used butter, you could also use ghee, coconut oil etc)
3. Add ground beef to oil and cook for a couple minutes
4. Add shredded brussel sprouts to beef and cook together until meat is no longer red
5. While meat and sprouts are cooking peel your apple, then chop it and the onion into your desired sized pieces
6. Once meat is no longer red add the chopped apple and onion to pan and cook until the onion is clear (5 or so minutes)
7. Sprinkle with sea salt and pepper
8. Let cool for a couple minutes and enjoy!
Optional: Top with organic butter or ghee for additional fat




Yes that was a very simple recipe I know... but sometimes simple meals are just as good as complicated ones! I have actually made this a couple times in the last week so you can tell that I like it!

Would you eat this? Would you make any changes? I would also suggest using bacon instead of the ground beef. If anyone tries this let me know!






March 03, 2013

Travelling Meal Ideas

So keeping with my theme of eating when travelling I thought I would post some sample meals from my latest adventure in San Antonio.
Since I had limited ingredients to cook with my meals were pretty simple, but all still tasty and most important.... SAFE!
I am sorry that I don't have pictures of most of these, but I will show you the ones I do have!

1. Fried Chicken with Coconut Cauliflower 


This one is pretty basic
For the chicken:

5 organic chicken legs
Olive oil
Basil
Salt
Pepper

All I did for this was place olive oil in a pan, set to medium heat and then add the chicken. Once the chicken was in the pan I coated the legs with basil, salt and pepper. Once the first side was cooked (golden brown skin) I turned the chicken over, coated with the same spices and then cooked until done.
Now I didn't measure any of my ingredients, or time the chicken but I would guess I cooked these for about 15-20 minutes. Just make sure there is no pink remaining when you cut into your chicken!

For the Cauliflower:
I chopped 1 small head of cauliflower and placed it into a sauce pan with about 1cm deep water in the bottom. I then cooked/ steamed the cauliflower until it was tender. Once it was done and on my plate I added Coconut oil and mashed it until in was left in small pieces.

Now I tend to like to eat my foods all mixed into one so I jumbled my chopped chicken legs and cauliflower into one big mess... but if you like to keep your foods separated you can definitely do that too... I just think my way is better.


3. Stuffed Turkey Breasts with Apple Sauce


So I saw some organic turkey breasts at Trader Joes and just had to make something with them. I don't eat a lot of turkey so this one was a total experiment but I think it turned out pretty well.


Stuffed Turkey Breast Ingredients:
1 yellow pepper
1/2 yellow onion
Basil
Salt 
Pepper 

Directions:
1. Finely dice onion and yellow pepper 
2. Cut a slice down the middle of each turkey breast, ensuring you don't cut right through
3. Spread turkey breasts apart and fill each slice with diced yellow pepper and onion (you should have some left over)
4. Place a frying pan on medium heat on add 1tbsp coconut oil
5. Place turkey breasts in pan, coat with basil and add salt and pepper to taste
6. Add the extra pepper and onions to pan and cover with lid 
7. Cook everything until the turkey breast are cooked through (no need to flip) (approximately 15 minutes) 
8. Once cooked top your turkey breast with some apple sauce, and add whatever side vegetable you want! Enjoy 




3. Apple Chicken Sausage with Sautéed Vegetables


So I can't take any credit for the sausages in this one. These are courtesy of Trader Joe's. I actually tried 2 different "Erin friendly" sausages from them while I was there. One was Apple Chardonnay and the other was Spicy Italian. I am partial to the apple one myself, but the fact that it was so easy to find safe sausages makes me a pretty happy girl.

For the sausages:
All I did was cook the sausages in a frying pan with some olive oil. So easy!

For the Sauteed vegetables:
I used the same pan that I had just used to cook the sausages (keep some of that delicious flavour!).  I added some coconut oil to the heated pan and then added chopped broccoli, mushrooms, yellow zucchini and onions. I always cook my broccoli a little first before adding the other vegies because I like mine well cooked but you definitely can throw everything in at once! I cooked these until the onions were clear and mushrooms well cooked. I also added some salt and pepper to the mix while the vegetables were cooking. Also very easy!


Well there you go everyone! Would you eat any of these? Would you make any adjustments?
I hope everyone is having a good weekend!