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Is Coconut a Fruit or a Nut?

coconut1

Is Coconut a Fruit or a Nut?

 

Is coconut a fruit or a nut? Fresh young coconuts are popular on a raw food diet. They alkalize you (increase your pH) and are natural electrolytes (it re-mineralizes you – a natural Gatorade).

To me fresh young coconuts are a special treat, my kids love them, they go very well in smoothies and the white meat is great in many raw food desert recipes. Coconut milk is a great alternative to dairy – a must have for vegans or for the growing group of people that is allergic to milk.

But what is a coconut? For a food that I like so much, I realized I didn’t know much about it. And I was wondering:

Is coconut a fruit or a nut?

Coconut is a large palm, growing to 30 m tall. The term coconut can refer to the entire coconut palm, the seed, or the fruit.

Botanically the coconut fruit is a drupe, not a true nut. A drupe is a fruit in which an outer fleshy part surrounds a pit of hardened endocarp with a seed inside.

Coconuts sold in the shops of non-tropical countries often have their husk removed. Thus the coconut as you know it in non-tropical countries is the pit or seed of the coconut fruit. The white flesh and water are the insides of the seed.

Other Drupes

Other drupes are coffee, mango, olive, date, pistachio, almonds, apricot, cherry, nectarine, peach, and plum.

So, is coconut a fruit or a nut?

Almonds, peaches and mango are in the same drupe family as coconuts? I always considered almonds nuts and peaches and mangoes fruits. So for me (clearly not a botanic) it seems that coconuts are somewhat of a crossing between a fruit and a nut. And we are eating the flesh and drinking the water of a huge seed.

 

 

Esme Stevens is the president of Raw Food Europe and has the number 1 website for starters of a raw food diet: thebestofrawfood.com

 

This article appears in ISSUE 14 of Healthy Juicing Magazine.
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Marmalade Tutorial – Loving Earth

Marmalade Tutorial – Loving Earth

raw

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CWyagyRxZ_E

This article appears in ISSUE 29 of Healthy Juicing Magazine. 

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Green Pirate Smoothie

Green Pirate Smoothie

Green Pirate Smoothie

There is no better way to introduce a variety of green veggies into your diet than with green smoothies. They make a perfect start to any morning and are also ideal for children who are typically quite fussy when it comes to eating green vegetables. This green pirate smoothie (named by my 6 year old!) is a big hit in my house. Since all the ingredients are blended, they are quick to absorb and less taxing on your digestive system. It contains ginger to ease digestion, green apple and lemon to cleanse, and lots of green veggies for phytonutrients, vitamins and minerals. I also like to add pineapple for some tropical inspiration! The avocado adds some healthy fat to make it creamy. Make a huge batch of the Green Pirate Smoothie and pour it into ice pop molds for a healthy dessert or after school treat.

 

Ingredients:

 

  • 2 cups green vegetables (I love spinach, kale and watercress)
  • 2 cups liquid (water, coconut water or unsweetened almond milk)
  • ¼ ripe avocado
  • 1 frozen banana
  • 1/2 green apple
  • 1 cup pineapple
  • 1 inch of grated gingerJuice of 1/2 organic lemon

Method:

Start by blending just the liquid and greens together until really blended and smooth. Then add the fruit to your blender. Pour into a tall glass and enjoy!
Joke of the day: What’s a pirate’s favorite letter?R!!!

Anneka Street, MA, CHHC, AADP is a Certified Integrative Nutrition Coach, Detox Specialist and Healthy Lifestyle Blogger at Mama Loves Healthy.

 

Anneka loves working with clients to help them lose weight, detox, get more energy, improve digestion, cook healthier meals and feel fabulous. Anneka is available for in-person or Skype nutrition consultations and also offers a variety of detox and cleanse programs throughout the year.
www.annekastreet.com
mamaloveshealthy.com
www.facebook.com/MamaLovesHealthy
Instagram: @mamaloveshealthy

 

 

This article appears in ISSUE 28 of Healthy Juicing Magazine. 
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5 False Assumptions about the Raw Diet

5 False Assumptions about the Raw Diet

It seems like every time you turn your head, you hear confusing and misleading information from every corner of the raw food movement. First, you have mainstream “experts” who rely on outdated and inaccurate data to advise us on the subject. And then there’s the raw food movement itself, which tends to focus on all the “miraculous” benefits that come with eating raw but skim over the potential risks.
Here, I will expose 5 false assumptions being spread by various raw-food advocates and naturopaths.“As long as it’s raw it’s okay”
When I first got into raw foods almost 9 years ago, the general advice was: “eat as much of anything as you’d like. As long as it’s raw it’s okay.”
That led me and others to some abuse, especially in the fat department. 

The fact that a food is raw doesn’t mean it’s necessarily healthy, just like a “natural” food isn’t necessarily a healthy food.

 

In my experience, the “raw foods” that people generally tend to go overboard with are: dried fruits, nuts, oils, avocados, seeds, and dehydrated foods in general.The foods that should be emphasized in the diet are the obvious but often forgotten fruits and vegetables.

 

“The less you eat the better off you’ll be”

 

Although this one is less common, there’s definitely a tendency in the raw food movement to recommend extreme frugal eating. The idea is that since the food is “alive”, it’s not necessary to eat as much or even eat foods with calories.

 

This advice leads a lot of people to go on repeated fasts, cycles of restricted diets followed by binges, and generally fail to thrive on a diet that simply doesn’t give enough energy and nutrients.

 

Although some caloric-restriction is good and caloric requirements may be a smaller on a raw food diet, the basic principles of nutrition still apply and therefore it’s necessary to learn to eat enough fruits and vegetables in the right balance to provide us with enough calories and nutrients.

“Fruit is dangerous”

 

There is a tendency in the raw food movement to discourage the consumption of fruit and recommend instead a diet of vegetables and fat (avocados, nuts, oils, etc.).

 

Fruit is often accused of being too high in sugar and overly hybridized. Some people go as far as accusing fruit to “cause cancer”, which has led more than one to think twice before adding another banana in their smoothie.

 

I won’t go into that entire discussion, but let me just say that I’m of the opinion that fruit is an extremely healthy food and there is no reason to limit its consumption as long as your diet is healthy and low in fat.

 

“You can have as much raw fat as you’d like”

 

Along with the idea of “as long as it’s raw it’s okay,” there’s definitely a widespread view that “you can have as much fat as you like and it’s going to be healthy for you as long as it’s raw fat.”

 

In my years of involvement in the raw food movement, I’ve seen many people end up in a worse state of health than they were before by eating large quantities of raw fat on a regular basis.I’ve had raw-foodists confessed eating up to a jar of almond butter a day, or eat mixtures of coconut butter and honey by the tablespoon.

 

For the record, let’s say it again: too much fat is not healthy, whether we’re talking about raw or cooked fat.

 

“Diet is the most important factor in health”

 

Although not limited to the raw food movement, a common factor of people switching to a new diet such as vegan or raw is that they tend to focus on diet alone as if it was the only important factor in health.

 

The same is found in fitness maniacs who think that more exercise is going to make them healthier no matter what.

 

Health is a little more complex than that. There are so many factors that can influence it, including emotions, fitness, relationships, environmental factors, sun and air, spirituality and life purpose.

 

Do yourself a favor and view diet as only one aspect of a healthy lifestyle!

 

Mens sana in corpore sano — a healthy mind in a healthy body. 🙂

 

 

 

Frederic Patenaude, is the author of the best-selling e-book “The Raw Secrets”. He is currently giving away free access to his private library of over 100 exclusive articles along with a subscription to his newsletter Pure Health & Nutrition. Visitwww.fredericpatenaude.com while charter subscriptions last.

 

 

 

This article appears in ISSUE 27 of Healthy Juicing Magazine.

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Chew Your Juice

Chew Your Juice

 

I recently had the pleasure of presenting a nutritional workshop in conjunction with my Gonstead technique module for CE credits here in Washington State. The nutritional topics included antioxidants, Vitamin E fractions of tocotrienols (the greatest and latest understanding of the mostly misunderstood cousins of alpha tocopherol), omega 3 fatty acid physiology and of course my personal favorite…nitric oxide physiology and nutrition.

 

After introducing and then discussing the heart healthy benefits of nitric oxide, along with dozens of other known benefits of this humble molecule, now considered the most studied and possibly most importance health discovery in recent years, we turned to the subject of the alternative pathway of nitric oxide production in the body. As a pilot I appreciate, and in fact owe my life to, redundant systems. Every aircraft has a backup system, sometimes more than two. The amazing human body has a multitude of such systems, many of which we are just beginning to understand and appreciate.

 

 

The incredibly functional backup system, or pathway, for nitric oxide production in the body is through the oral route of nutrient ingestion. We need this vital little molecule, simply comprised of an atom of nitrogen and one of oxygen, not only for cardiovascular function…but also for a host of widely varied messenger and mediating functions in the body…including the nervous system.
When we eat nitrogen containing foods (beets and dark leafy greens being good examples of nitric oxide foods), most of the nitrogen is “fixed” or made available for human physiology in the form of nitrates. These nitrates are the result of plant life extracting atmospheric nitrogen and “recycling”, if you will, this element for use in the cells and molecular structures of our body. And here is an interesting point – we humans do not do a good job at all of assimilating nitrogen in the form of nitrates. We need some help.

 

To the rescue is a beautiful example of symbiosis. Bacteria that are normal residents of our alimentary canal, especially the crevices and fissures of our tongue, give us a valuable trade. They metabolize this nitrogen (in the form of nitrate) into nitrite…a form of nitrogen that we can more easily insert into the cascade of nitric oxide production.

 

 

 

This pathway has been defamed and even decimated in our decades-long war on germs…to the point that, in my opinion, this “germ warfare” will likely be eventually considered one of the primary causal mechanisms of the epidemic of heart disease and cardiovascular related illnesses that have plagued our country and planet. When you consider that our normal bacteria outnumber our human cells by a factor of roughly ten to one, it might be wise to be a little nicer to our microscopic friends!

 

OK…I am sure you are wondering by now what the heck this has to do with “chewing your juice”. One of my seminar attendees from yesterday made an interesting comment. With the current trend, maybe even fad, of ‘juicing’….is it possible that in our quest for easily accessible nutrients that we are by-passing a valuable method of heart-healthy and possibly life-saving routes of nitric oxide? Doesn’t it seem likely that by changing the form of the ingested nutrient source, in this example by pulverizing the food into minute particles and quickly swallowing…that this nitrate reducing process is being seriously interfered with?
I think so! I will continue to do my research on this. In the meantime….CHEW YOUR JUICE!!! These friendly bacteria need time to meet with the nitrate molecules and “do their stuff”!


Dr. Chinn is a 1986 Life graduate (Marietta), has been practicing in the Seattle area for 26 years. His book, Symphony of Wellness, includes the latest research and understanding of the healing power of the nitric oxide, particularly as supported by nitrate and nitrite supplementation. His first book, Soaring Beyond Fear, explores the sometimes humorous antics of our fear-based personality and identity.
www.perrychinn.com

 

This article appears in ISSUE 28 of Healthy Juicing Magazine 

Beautifying Berry Green Smoothie Recipe

Beautifying Berry Green Smoothie Recipe

 

This green drink might not be the prettiest color (berries + greens = purply-brown), but the supercharged ingredients in it will help you look your prettiest. And it’s delicious–there’s really no excuse not to try it.

Our outer beauty is a complete reflection of what’s going on inside of our bodies; filling up on nutrient-dense green smoothies is one of the best ways to take care of ourselves from the inside out.

 

Here are just a few of the many beautifying benefits of this yummy green drink:

  • The omega-3 fatty acids in the goji berries and chia seeds will aid with skin repair, moisture and elasticity and make your hair shiny and strong.
  • The high concentrations of antioxidants in each ingredient will help protect your skin (and every cell in your body) from oxidative damage and help fight wrinkles.
  • The vitamin C from the kale and berries will make your skin glow and also aid in collagen production.
  • The potassium in the banana will help keep your electrolytes in balance and your skin hydrated.
  • The vitamins, minerals and protein packed in all of these ingredients will make your hair and nails strong and beautiful.
  • The overall anti-inflammatory and alkalizing effects of this fiber-rich green drink will calm inflammation both inside and outside the body, helping you feel and look you best.

Beautifying Berry Green Smoothie Recipe

Makes one large serving. Use organic ingredients whenever possible.

  • 1 cup purified water
  • 2-3 cups baby kale leaves (or any variety of kale)
  • 1 cup frozen mixed berries
  • 2 tablespoons goji berries
  • 1/2 peeled banana
  • 2 tablespoons chia seeds

Method: Wash all produce thoroughly. Blend all ingredients until smooth, about 60 seconds. Best when consumed immediately. Can be kept in the refrigerator up to 12 hours in an airtight glass container filled to the top and sealed tightly to prevent oxidation. Mason jars work perfectly for this; filling them to the top and sealing them tightly will help prevent the smoothie from oxidizing and loosing nutrients.

Quick Note on Goji Berries:
Used in traditional Chinese medicine for over 5,000 years, goji berries are regarded as a longevity, strength-building, and potency food of the highest order. This superfood contains 18 kinds of amino acids, including all 8 essential amino acids, up to 21 trace minerals, high amounts of antioxidants, iron, polysaccharides, B & E vitamins, and many other nutrients. Goji berries can be found at your natural foods store or online and usually come dried. Once opened, store in the refrigerator up to 6 months. If you can’t find goji berries, substitute with extra mixed frozen berries.

 

 

 

Elizabeth Rider is a leading nutrition and whole living expert teaching women around the world not just how to live well, but how to become the absolute BEST version of themselves. As a certified health coach, blogger and successful entrepreneur, cultivating the ideal lifestyle isn’t her passion; it’s her religion. Find her free recipes, wellness tips and online nutrition programs at www.elizabethrider.com.

 

This article appears in ISSUE 28 of Healthy Juicing Magazine.
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Avocado Horseradish Smash Spread

Avocado Horseradish Smash Spread

 

Ingredients:

 

  • 1 Avocado
  • 1 tablespoon of Horse radish
  • ¾ clove of Garlic
  • ½ a Lime
  • ½ teaspoon of Salt

 

 

For more bootleg kitchen tips from Chef Diane Dimeo, subscribe at www.youtube.com/user/dianedimeo

 

 

This article appears in ISSUE 27 of Healthy Juicing Magazine 
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Raw Buckwheat Porridge Recipe

Raw Buckwheat Porridge Recipe

pro

Ingredients:

Buck wheat Groats

  • Walnuts
  • Apple
  • Orange
  • Banana
  • Blue berries
  • Bee pollen

This article appears in ISSUE 27 of Healthy Juicing Magazine
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Alcohol Free Raw Juice Cocktail

Alcohol Free Raw Juice Cocktail

 
We are focusing on detox this week and are juicing everything up! To keep things interesting, I opted to serve dinner with this “Alcohol Free – Raw Juice Cocktail.”

 

This seemed like a great idea because:
• A – We like cocktails with dinner
• B – We are in detox mode = High nutrition and zero booze
• C – I’ve gotta burn through these veggies, because I’m headed out of town
Because we both had juice with breakfast and lunch, we wanted to make this a little more fun. So in addition to juicing, I served this over ice, added ground cinnamon and nutmeg and topped it off with natural ginger ale to give it a fizzy affect and garnished with fresh cucumber (you could also use a natural fizzy drink like club soda or ginger kombucha!). It was the perfect accent to our meal and great way to end the day.
• Next time you’re in the mood for a cocktail, but not the booze — try this!
• Next time you’re looking for a way to “spice up” your juice routine — try this!
• Next time you’re looking for a way to super charge your beverage with vitamins and minerals — try this!
Just exactly what do I mean by “super charge” your beverage? Try this on for size, this recipe is high or very high in manganese, potassium, vitamin A, vitamin B6, and vitamin C. How else can you do that for under 70 calories and still fill that “dinner cocktail” void?
Umm…I dunno, I saw this one as a win-win for sure!

 

Alcohol Free Raw Juice Cocktail

• 1/4 fresh beet
• 4 large carrots
• 1/2  green apple
• dash of cinnamon
• dash of nutmeg
• 12 oz natural ginger ale, club soda, or ginger kombucha
• 2 cucumber wheels
Directions: Add fruits and veggies to the juicer. Add spices to raw juice. Fill 2 pint glasses with ice. Divide the raw juice between the two glasses, top with ginger ale or kombucha, garnish with cucumber wheel and serve!
Cheers!

Teresa M. Howes is the voice behind the blog Eat. Drink. Be Skinny. She shares great advice about juicing, fitness, and weight loss. The motto isn’t to be perfect. It is to be better. See more from Teresa at
www.EatDrinkandbeSkinny.com
www.facebook.com/ColorYourselfSkinny
twitter.com/SkinnyTinis

 

This article appears in ISSUE 27 of Healthy Juicing Magazine
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What is Vitamin A (From Beta-Carotene)?

What is Vitamin A (From Beta-Carotene)?


Vitamin A is the name of a group of fat-soluble retinoids, including retinol, retinal, retinoic acid, and retinyl esters. Vitamin A is involved in immune function, vision, reproduction, and cellular communication. Vitamin A is critical for vision as an essential component of rhodopsin, a protein that absorbs light in the retinal receptors, and because it supports the normal differentiation and functioning of the conjunctival membranes and cornea. Vitamin A also supports cell growth and differentiation, playing a critical role in the normal formation and maintenance of the heart, lungs, kidneys, and other organs

 

Two forms of vitamin A are available in the human diet: preformed vitamin A (retinol and its esterified form, retinyl ester) and provitamin A carotenoids. Preformed vitamin A is found in foods from animal sources, including dairy products, fish, and meat (especially liver). By far the most important provitamin A carotenoid is beta-carotene

 

Pro-vitamin carotenoids, like beta-carotene, comprise a diverse class of antioxidant molecules that help protect the body from oxidative damage. Approximately 700 natural carotenoids have been isolated and characterized. Most are derived from plants, where they serve multiple functions: photosynthetic pigments, photoprotectants, and free radical scavengers. Some 50-60 carotenoids are present in a typical diet with the major sources being fruits and vegetables.

 

Beta-carotene is one of the best known carotenoids, likely because: (1) it is one of the most abundant in a typical adult diet, and (2) it provides two nutritional functions – in addition to its role as an antioxidant, the human body converts beta-carotene into vitamin A.
Other members of the antioxidant carotenoid family include alpha-carotene, cryptoxanthin, zeaxanthin, lutein, and lycopene. Unlike beta-carotene, most of these nutrients are not converted to vitamin A in significant amounts.

 

 

Beta carotene’s role as an antioxidant is based on its extensive system of conjugated double bonds which, upon reacting with an oxygen atom, absorb and diffuse that oxygen’s potentially destructive energy. The oxygen atom returns to a lower energy state, and beta carotene dissipates the absorbed energy harmlessly (as heat). Similar mechanisms are involved in quenching the oxidative potential of hydroxyl radicals and other free radical compounds.

 

As provitamin A, beta carotene contributes to an entirely different set of functions by supplying a portion of the body’s requirement for retinol (vitamin A). In fact, a single molecule of beta-carotene can be cleaved in the body to produce two molecules of vitamin A. Other carotenoids (including alpha-carotene, gamma-carotene, and cryptoxanthin) provide provitamin A activity, but yield only one molecule of vitamin A when metabolized.

 

Retinol (vitamin A) is an essential nutrient associated with three important functions, the best-defined of which involves human vision. Retinol is a functional constituent of rhodopsin, a protein located in the retina of the eye that absorbs light and triggers a series of biochemical reactions that ultimately initiate nerve impulses, resulting in sight.

 

Secondly, vitamin A is involved in the activation of gene expression and the control of cell differentiation. It is through this function that vitamin A affects immune function, taste, hearing, appetite, skin renewal, bone development, and growth.

 

Vitamin A’s third role involves control of embryonic development. Here it is thought that retinoic acid modulates the expression of certain genes that govern patterns of sequential development of various tissues and organs in the body.

 

Vitamin A deficiency is a major public health issue, particularly in developing countries. It has been estimated that 500,000 preschool-age children worldwide become blind each year as a result of vitamin A deficiency. Millions of others suffer from night blindness, a common clinical sign of inadequate vitamin A intake. Further estimates suggest that more than 100 million children worldwide suffer from vitamin A inadequacy without showing clinical signs of acute deficiency. Beta-carotene is known to be an effective dietary cure for vitamin A deficiency and an effective remedy for symptoms of this disorder.

 

Epidemiological studies support long-term beneficial effects of beta-carotene intake on a number of degenerative diseases. For example, the relationship between beta-carotene intake and cancer has received considerable attention in recent years. Epidemiological evidence suggests that long-term intake of dietary beta-carotene may reduce the risk of several types of cancer. Similar findings pertain to heart disease and immune health.

 

Dietary sources rich in beta carotene and other provitamin A carotenoids include carrots, broccoli, yellow squash, corn, tomatoes, papayas, oranges, and dark green leafy vegetables like spinach, kale and Chinese cabbage. Beta-carotene is heat stable, so it is not degraded during prolonged boiling or microwaving.

 

 

Although ingestion of too much preformed vitamin A (retinol) can be toxic, excessive intake of beta-carotene is not known to induce vitamin A toxicity. Negative feedback mechanisms in the body prevent the over-conversion of beta-carotene to retinol. However, high levels of beta-carotene in the diet can induce hypercarotenosis, a benign condition characterized by a jaundice-like yellowing of the skin. Symptoms are reversed when dietary intake is reduced.
Because of the danger of excessive vitamin A, as retinal, which can be toxic, if you take supplements they should be as beta-carontene, not retinyl acetate or retinal palmitate.

 

 

Mike Hall is nutrition expert with degrees in Biochemistry and Psycho-Biology, and is passionate about health and nutritional medicine.  Mike, along with his wife and business partner, Claudia, also work as educators to help people learn how to improve their health and live a richer life.  Mike also is a consultant and is sought after to help food, beverage, pharmaceutical, and nutriceutical companies improve their manufacturing, quality, product development processes. He has worked closely with small biotech companies and also huge multinational companies whose products are probably in your kitchen. Through his blog at www.mikeha77.com Mike provides education on many nutritional topics as well as sorting through the product advertising hype we all are faced with. If you hear a product claim that it sounds too good to be true, visit his website to see if he has an answer, or contact him for more information at mike@mikeha77.com

 

 

Beta-Carotene Juice Recipes

Night Vision Green Juice
Serves 2

  • 1/2 Broccoli Stalk
  • 1 Large Apple
  • 2 Stalks Celery
  • 5-6 Carrots

 

 

Cinnamon Squash Juice
Makes about 10oz

  • 4 cups butternut squash (or pumpkin)
  • 1 apple
  • Dash of cinnamon for sprinkling on top of the juice

 

Sunrise Juice
Serves 2

  • ½ butternut squash (remove seeds first)
  • 2 apples
  • 2 carrots
  • 1 inch nub of ginger
  • ¼ lemon

 

Chinese Cabbage Green Juice 
Serves 1

  • 7 leaves Chinese cabbage
  • 7 leaves Swiss chard
  • 3 carrots
  • 1 apple
  • 1 inch nub of ginger
  • Optional lemon juice

 

 

Beta Carotene Pepper Punch
Serves 1

  • 1 red pepper
  • 1 yellow pepper
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 apple
  • 1 beet
  • Juice from ½ lemon
  • Serve over ice

 

Radiant Skin Carrot Kale Juice
Serves 1

  • 4 carrots
  • 1 orange, peeled
  • 1 bunch of kale

This article appears in ISSUE 25 of Healthy Juicing Magazine 
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