Everyone has their “go-to” meals for when they are feeling down or ready for some comfort. Something that is a trend among the nutrition community is that instead of having your high fat comfort food that your body craves every now & then– the opposite tends to happen. Your body starts to crave really clean foods. I literally will spend a weekend going a little too hard, drinking too much alcohol, and staying up too late- and that Sunday night or Monday morning all my body wants is greens, greens, greens/kale, kale, kale.
When I’m feeling like this I definitely have a pretty good routine of what I do to get back into a “feel-good” type of setting. First, I drink a lot of alkaline/filtered water. I’m talking around 3-4 liters in the day for around 3 days. Second, I eat mostly vegetables: greens, carrots, cucumber, zucchini, sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower. Third, I eat lots of foods that are supportive of your body’s detoxification pathways: Sulfur rich foods (garlic, onion, cabbage, fermented foods like sauerkraut), and fabulous chelators (which help to bind to free radicals and toxic elements in your body and support their elimination) like: cilantro, parsley, ginger and turmeric. Fourth, I try to include adaptogenic herbs into my diet. In regards to supplementation, ashwaganda is a great, light herb to help with managing stress. Whether this is through supplementation or through herbal teas that have licorice root, rhodiola & lemon balm in them. Last, I get as much sleep as I can. That means eating dinner early (6pm) and getting a good nights sleep (8 hours at least).
When it comes to food- I try to eat at home for the first few days so that I can control what goes into my food & can know exactly what it is that I am putting in my body. Also, especially in the spring/summer, I try to eat some raw vegetables to increase the fiber content in my diet and help to get things “moving along” 🙂 One of my favourite meals to make when I’m really feeling malnourished and in need of some delicious, high-quality, nourishing foods is: Kale Salad or Raw Pasta. Depending on what I have and what’s seasonal/local/available– the raw pasta is either a mixture of zucchini noodles and kelp noodles OR zucchini noodles and sweet potato noodles.
I actually only just recently tried making sweet potato noodles at home, believe it or not! Before being introduced to it, I always would just make zucchini pasta. Don’t get me wrong, zucchini pasta is still at the top of the list of my favourite foods to make. It is so fresh, clean, simple and DELICIOUS. I’ve always had a bit of instinctual discomfort around the idea of eating sweet potatoes or yams raw. Sweet potatoes & yams are really a fabulous vegetable because they are not only filled with nutritional value (vitamins & minerals) but they are also low on the glycemic index. So, although they are actually quite sweet, naturally (think: yam fries– YUM), they are lower on the glycemic index than their neighbours, the regular potato (e.g., normal fries/chips). What does this mean? When you are eating sweet potatoes or yams, your blood sugar doesn’t spike like it does with regular potatoes. Thus, they are a safer food to eat in relation to health, most especially if you are facing any blood sugar issues (diabetes, low blood sugar, diet, cleanse). What’s more? They are filled with vitamin C, folate, calcium, potassium and beta-carotene.
I was introduced to making the sweet potato noodles in my kitchen by Briana Santoro from The Naked Label. A fabulous business based out of Toronto who I have done a lot of work with in the past year! If you haven’t ever checked out the restaurant reviews I have written for them, click here to check out my review on Aphrodites Cafe and here for the review on Tao Organics Cafe! The Naked Label is all about creating a platform where the public can come to, to find information on nutrition & food and understand it. Their slogan, “undressing the food we eat” says it all. Briana and the amazing Ashley Anderson are in the process of finishing up the final touches of her 2nd eBook! This one, I cannot wait for. I was fortunate to write the nutritional content & information for her recipes, and while I was in the process of writing them- I fell in love with one of her recipes. Briana is all about making nutrition and delicious, healthy food accessible to the greater public. By eliminating that fear and confusion around food and nutrition- Briana hopes to extend her reach and love to a larger population and in turn, help improve the lives of those around her. This is a desire that is very much shared within the holistic community. Understanding that we are following our passions for the good of something much greater & larger than ourselves!
If you’d like to have a look at The Naked Label’s first FREE ecookbook filled with delicious recipes (some vegetarian, vegan, & gluten-free) click here.
Stay tuned for the release of Briana’s new cookbook which is expected to release in June! I will definitely be letting you know as soon as it is available! This will have the original sweet potato pasta recipe which I got my idea from, in addition to MANY MANY more amazing recipes of all varieties & flavours and beautiful photos. You won’t want to miss out on it!
ENJOY this simple, nutritious & DELICIOUS dish:)
I encourage you to experiment with flavours and ingredients and mix it up! Add different toppings, change up your sauce and make a mixture of kelp, zucchini and sweet potato noodles. Add GREENS! If you do try this dish out, or any other variation, SHARE IT here. Let me know how it went:) What is your favourite way to have raw pasta? I’d love to hear. See below for a few of my variations on this dish:
- 3 sweet potatoes
- 1 tablespoon sea salt
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1 cup olives, chopped
- 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
- handful chopped cilantro
- 1/2 red bell pepper, diced
- 1 cup fresh basil
- 1/2 cup sundried tomatoes
- 1 roma tomato
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 tablespoon chickpea miso paste
- 1 cup hemp seeds
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1/4 cup sunflower seeds
- Cut the sweet potatoes into quarters and make into noodles using the spiralizer (this takes some effort, and please, be careful of your fingers!)
- Add 1 tbsp of sea salt to the noodles and mix in a bowl. Let it sit out for 15-20 minutes
- Rinse the noodles and drain the water. Put them back in a bowl
- Chopped/dice your toppings
- Add all of the sauce ingredients into a blender and blend until it has riched a semi-smooth consistency (up to you on how chunky/smooth you prefer your sauce)
- Pour the pesto/sauce onto your noodles and mix throughout with your hands, massaging the noodles.
- dd your toppings! Sprinkle sesame seeds on top!