5 Healthy Snacks for the Fall

With Fall in full force here, Acupuncture Northwest has 5 healthy snacks to get you through the next couple months!

Pumpkin Energy Bites

These bites are fantastic to have for an on the go snack that will provide you with healthy fats that will keep your brain and body happy throughout day. They will also satisfy your fall craving for a sweet pumpkin treat without all the processed sugar.

All of the ingredients for this recipe can be found at your local Whole Foods or new Seasons.

1 cup pitted dates

1/2 cup pecans

1/3 cup pumpkin puree

1/4 cup unsweetened coconut flakesunknown

2 tsp vanilla

1 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp nutmeg

1/4 tsp ground cloves

Pinch of salt

METHOD

  1. Place the dates into a small bowl and cover with water. Let soak for 10 minutes, then drain.Place the pecans into a food processor and pulse until finely ground.

  2. Add in the rest of the ingredients, including the soaked dates. Pulse until combined. Adjust the spices to taste. Place into the refrigerator for 30 minutes to chill.

  3. Use your hands to form the dough into small balls. Store in the refrigerator in an airtight container.

 

Sliced Apple & Justin’s Packet: The Combination

screen-shot-2016-09-30-at-10-23-31-amFall is apple season and we are lucky to live in a part of the country where we have access to the best of them. Go to any farmers market and you will find a wonderful variety of delicious and organic apples harvested close to home. If you have never heard of or tried Justin’s nut butter you are missing out, don’t worry though! You can start loving it now and for the rest of your nut butter loving days. There are multiple flavors and types of nut butters (Peanut, hazelnut and almond) these are combined with yummy ingredients such as honey. You can find these in the nut butter isl of any Whole Foods or New Seasons. Nuts contain healthy fats as well as protein and when combined with a fresh sliced apple you have hit the healthy fats and natural sugar jack -pot.Fall is apple season and we are lucky to live in a part of the country where we have access to the best of them. Go to any farmers market and you will find a wonderful variety of delicious and organic apples harvested close to home. If you have never heard of or tried Justin’s nut butter you are missing out, don’t worry though! You can start loving it now and for the rest of your nut butter loving days. There are multiple flavors and types of nut butters (Peanut, hazelnut and almond) these are combined with yummy ingredients such as honey. You can find these in the nut butter isl of any Whole Foods or New Seasons. Nuts contain healthy fats as well as protein and when combined with a fresh sliced apple you have hit the healthy fats and natural sugar jack-pot.

 

Cranberry Endive Boats: via Trader Joe’s recipes

Endive is a form of lettuce with an immense amount of nutrition that will bring your body the vitality it needs for maintaining a healthy metabolism. Many vitamins found in endive can assist the body in regulating blood sugar levels and metabolizing carbohydrates as well as a boost of fiber and vitamin K for your eyes. Add Trader Joe’s Cranberry Chevre and some sliced almonds and you have a nutritious and delectable snack.327mainimage

  • 1 pkg TJ’s Red & White Belgian Endives

  • 1 log TJ’s Cranberry Chevre, softened to room temperature

  • 1 pkg TJ’s Raw Sliced Almonds

Separate whole endive leaves from the base, rinse and pat dry. Spread cheese evenly on the individual endive leaves, then sprinkle with sliced almonds for garnish and a little crunch.

 

Spicy & Toasted Pumpkin Seeds

When You have carved your pumpkins or cut all your squash and have hundreds of seeds toss some spices on and bake them into yummy, crispy morsels!

 

  • 1 cup pumpkin seeds, rinsed and drytoasted-pumpkin-seeds-recipe-9new

  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder

  • ½ teaspoon salt

  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne powder

  • ½ ounce olive oil

Method

  • Preheat oven to 375-degrees F.

  • In a bowl combine all ingredients until seed are coated well.

  • Spread evenly on a baking sheet and bake until toasted and slightly browned, about 15-20 minutes, tossing halfway through. Watch carefully to avoid burning as all ovens vary on cook times. Remove from oven, and let cool before serving.

 

screen-shot-2016-10-07-at-10-16-06-amVeggie Crisps

There are going to be times when we crave something salty, crispy… and likely not the healthy stuff our body needs. If you find yourself in this situation here are some options that won’t leave you feeling guilty. Kale Crisps and Sweet Potato Chips will satisfy these craving while giving you more nutrition than a greasy handful of potato chips would. Sweet potatoes are packed with vitamin K( the good stuff your eye health). Kale being a dark bitter green will give you tons of antioxidants which aid in anti-inflammatory responses within the body’s cells. These are linked to cancer fighting agents due to the increase of oxygen in the body cells and tissues. Eating these foods cooked to a crisp does decrease the nutrients available to your body so whenever possible eat the raw version to get the full vitamin and nutrition effect. This is because when foods are cooked at an extreme degree ( roughly 350 degrees) the live enzymes within the foods die therefore they are no longer available in their highest form of nutrition. However, you will still get a great amount of nutrition from these options over a bag of processed chips!

Ingredients

  • ½ bunch of kale, about 10 stems

  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil

  • ¼ tsp Sea Salt

  • Pinch black pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 250° F, and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats, and set aside.

  2. Remove the stems from the kale and tear the leaves up into large, but bite-size pieces. Wash the kale by submerging the torn leaves in a large mixing bowl with cold water and then thoroughly dry in a salad spinner or lay them out on a clean kitchen towel.

  3. In a large mixing bowl, working in 2 batches, gently massage the oil into the kale leaves to coat them.

  4. Lay them out in a single layer on the prepared baking sheets and evenly sprinkle the salt, and black pepper over all of the chips.

  5. Bake for 15 minutes, then rotate the baking sheets and bake for an additional 15 minutes, until crispy.

  6. Let stand for 3-5 minutes before eating.

 

Baked Sweet Potato Chips

INGREDIENTSscreen-shot-2016-10-07-at-11-15-52-am

  • 2 sweet potatoes, washed and dried thoroughly

  • 1 tsp olive oil (olive oil spray is best)

  • salt and pepper, to taste

  • parchment paper

  • Preheat oven to 250 degrees.

  • Using a mandoline, slice sweet potatoes as thinly as possible.

  • Pat sweet potato slices dry with paper towel, add to medium sized bowl.

  • Spray slices with olive oil mist (or add 1 tsp olive oil) and generously sprinkle with salt, pepper, or any other herbs you’d like to add.

  • Lay slices on baking sheet lined with parchment paper, do not overlap.

  • Bake at 250 for 1 hour, until crispy.

  • Turn oven up to 350 and let chips brown very slightly. Watch chips and make sure they do not burn.

  • If you’d like them cool, place on a cooling rack and let sit 10 minutes.

  • Serve and enjoy!

Foam Rolling

Foam Rolling Tips

Foam Roller
Foam Roller

Your body is one giant tissue network. Your tissue ( muscles, tendons, ligaments etc.) forms and settles depending on how you move or do not move your body. If you sit on a couch all day or at a desk chair your tissue will become very good at sitting in a chair position. When you try to move your tissues in ways they are not use to (run, yoga,stretch) they goes through an adaptation period,you may experience tightness or soreness. This does not mean you should not move, and run, and be active! You may just need a little bit of manual manipulation after you get started to help you perform your best. The body tissues will get gunked up from being sedentary, holding onto stress, or from lack of stretching after bouts of movement/exercise. Foam rolling is a great way to un-gunk the tissues and release tension and knots and alleviate fatigue.

Position the foam roller on top of one leg. Begin by rolling from the top of the knees and over the quads. Maintain pressure throughout, and breathe evenly. After spending some time at the quads move to the posterior hips. You can sit on the foam roller with your hands at the sides for support. You can work on one side at a time here. Start at the glutes and roll down toward the back of the knee. Do this on both sides. From here you can move to the hip flexors. These get so gunked up! The space between the top of your quads and hip bone. Turn onto your belly with the foam roller placed into one side hip flexor. Apply pressure and roll back and forth slowly and evenly into the space. Repeat on the other side. To get into the low back/mid back place the roller at your low back with your feet flat on the floor. Bring your hands to the back of your head interlaced to support the neck. Roll up and down while applying pressure. Feel free to move in different directions to break up any specific areas around the spine. From here you can place the foam roller right below your cervical spine at your shoulder blades and roll down the back toward your sacrum. Keep your fingers interlaced at your neck for support. As you roll down exhale deeply through your mouth to allow muscles to relax as you move over them. If at any point during foam rolling you feel sharp pain in an area, stop the movement and adjust the body or move to a different area.

By utilizing the foam roller for just a few minutes a day not only are you breaking up knots you are also bringing blood flow and nutrition into areas that need to recover. A test you can do before and after you use the foam roller is a simple full body roll down. Start standing with feet underneath the hips and roll down to touch your toes. Recognize how far you are able to reach and then once you have completed foam rolling, do this again. It is very likely you will see increased length in the body with just those few minutes of manipulation.

The foam roller we recommend can be found here.

 

Time

How often do you find yourself saying that you don’t have time for meditation, or exercise, or to cook healthy food for yourself? What about time to make health appointments for yourself, or to see your friends? What does it mean to you say you don’t have time? Do you have time to watch TV? For most of us the answer is yes. Isn’t our perceived lack of time really about priorities? Why is it so easy to neglect prioritizing ourselves?  In reality, what on earth could be more important? Imagine what life would be like if we put ourselves on the top of the list.
Hands Time
What if we were more strategic about our life and how we use our time?
What if we were all doing better than just surviving?
What would it be like if you could say that you felt strong, confident and vibrant??
Can you imagine using those words to describe yourself? STRONG, CONFIDENT, and VIBRANT. All because you consciously choose you. We all have the same amount of time in a day. It is simply how we prioritize it and where we prioritize ourselves that helps define how we feel at the end of that day.

Almond Butter Bombs – Sarah’s Favorite Snack

IMG_1541These healthy treats are Sarah’s favorite snack. After you eat one, you will say “these are so good” about 4 times, just like Sarah did the first time she bit into one. They are healthy and so simple! No cooking…There is 1-2 minutes of mixing ingredients, 2 hours in the freezer and bam you are popping one into your mouth!

    Highlights:

They contain no sugar and promote stable blood sugar via healthy fats with a touch of carbohydrates. This recipe came from the book Keto Clarity by Jimmy Moore and Eric C. Westman.

    Ingredients:

1 cup almond butter
3/4 cup unrefined coconut oil
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 – 3 teaspoons stevia powder extract

    Directions:

1) Place everything in a microwave safe bowl
2) Microwave for 45 seconds
3) Mix everything together
4) Pour mixture into ice cube trays
5) Freeze for 2 hours
6) Enjoy!