Feel free to substitute with kale, zucchini, beets, or other root veggies.
2 bunches of collards or kale (about 10 cups)
Olive oil spray or 2 tbs of olive oil
1 tsp salt
2 tbs of nutritional yeast
1 tsp of smoked paprika
1/4 tsp of chipotle pepper seasoning if you like things spicy
1. Wash collards in cold water. I like to soak mine while I prepare my other ingredients since they come fresh out of the garden and sometimes have little pieces of hay attached to them.
2. Drain then cut collards into small pieces and remove the central rib or stem from the leaf if you prefer. I don't mind the extra stem since it is easier to hold onto the chip that way.
3. Put the collards in a bowl with the olive oil and salt (you can add the optional flavorings at this time as well). Massage the collards for a couple of minutes until you feel their texture change as they soften a bit.
4. Place the collards in a dehydrator and set to desired temperature for desired time. I usually set mine to work while I am at work or sleeping so I keep the temperature below 100F for 8 hours. The chips are usually done by about 4 hours but you can increase the temperature to 125F if needed to shorten cook time. If you add more oil, sometimes the collards will take longer to dehydrate.
5. If using zucchini, beets, potatoes, or other vegetables you will usually need a longer dehydration time and will need to slice the vegetables to a uniform thickness so some of the chips don't become too tough while others need longer cook times. I use a mandolin for mine.
My goals for this lecture were to discuss the basic attributes of an allergic response, common allergies, and validated tests for these allergies. In addition, we briefly discussed commonly understood food intolerances, and their validated tests.
Disclaimer: I reviewed many papers, text books, and review articles for this topic and presented currently accepted topics from peer reviewed journals. I understand that this field is always growing and developing and there are many papers and discussions out there; some of those results were not discussed. Do not use this talk to replace consultation with a medical provider. If there are any concerns about a food reaction please discuss them with your physician. If there is a concern about a possible allergic reaction, please seek medical attention. immediately.
The slide above shows a way to categorize a food reaction as simply as possible. In other words, a food reaction can be initiated by the immune system or it isn't. Anything that isn't, is not considered an allergy but rather a food intolerance. To further categorize the food allergy reaction, I have fields partitioned into IgE or antibody E mediated reactions, a partial IgE reaction, or some other type of immune reaction that does not involve IgE.
Many of you are probabley wondering what IgE is at this point. IgE is an antibody produced by the body. An antibody is a protein produce by the body that identifies a antigen or foreign substance in the body (that foeign substance is a food particle in this case). Antibody E or IgE is a class of antibody that is particularly involved in the allergic response I am discussing above.This reponse is specific since it produces swelling, hives, flushing, and so many other symptoms that we think about when we think about allergies. This is because the response is linked to a response in the body that produces a substance called histamine. The important thing to remember is that IgE is mostly behind this allergy thing! There are other responses as listed above such as mixed or nonIgE immune responses but I will not go into those reponses in depth.
Food intolerances are the non immune mediated response can be further separated into categories. One category is a known toxic reponse such food poisioning from bacterial contamination of food. Another category is an explained pathway such as: lactose intolerance; fructose/short chain carbohydrate intolerance; and food additives or pharmacologic reactions (ie part of the food may contain large amounts of histamine and can create a histamine like reaction). The last cateogry is food intolerance that is not well explained such as irritable bowel syndrome or functional bowel disorders. There is ongoing research into these disorders that appear multifactorial in nature but I will not go further into this subject.
Allergy Symptoms, Allergies, and Validated Tests
Allergy symptoms are symptoms that occur from the IgE mediated histamine response and can be very serious even life threatening. This includes: itching and swelling of the lips, nose, mouth, and tongue; difficulty breath and swelling in the neck; hives, flushing, and swollen skin; nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and abdomen pain; and even passing out from a drop in blood pressure as blood vessels enlarge. All of these symptoms can lead to a life threatening condition called an anaphylatic reaction and requires immediate medical attention. There are lesser degrees of these reactions as well and they are also due to the same IgE mediated histamine response. Oral food allergy syndrome is an example of this where there is a cross reactivity from one allergen to another and can produce a response to the mouth area as noted below and can also be life threatening. Below is a slide on examples of food allergies and oral food allergy syndrome. Please note that children may have a different likeliness to develop certain allergies, develop more allergies, but also are more likely to outgrow these allergies.
Below is a list of the common validated tests for food allergies on the left side of the slide with a list of unvalidated testing on the right side. There are basically only three validated tests including: skin prick test, serum testing, and oral food challenge. However, even with those three tests most of the tests have to be interpreted by a clinician that knows the patient and can take the whole clinical scenario into consideration. This means a positive test may not indicate an allergy in one patient but a negative test in a different patient may not indicate there isn't an allergy. I know, confusing stuff. For example, if a patient has already had a concerning reaction to a food ie difficulty breathing and facial swelling, then a test with low reactivity may be positive in comparison to another patient with the same result and no history of such reaction being interpreted That is why testing should be navigated with a clinician that knows the patient and the test.
I did not go into detail on the other categories of allergy briefly touched on above: a response when someone has a response that partially involves IgE or doesn't involve IgE. These responses are still lumped into the category of allergy and include such disorders as milk protein allergy in newborns, food protein induced enteropathy, eosinophilic esophagitis, celiac's disease, irritable bowel disease, and many more.
Food Intolerances....what we know....
As noted earlier, we normally group true food intolerances into conditions we can adequately explain and those we can't. Common symptoms of food intolerance include diarrhea, constipation, bloating, and increased flatulence or farting. I did not discuss extra intestinal symptoms such as fatigue, malaise, migraines, mood changes, etc in my talk.
In the pharmacologic category noted above, there are reactions to food that are known to be explained and occur in many people. The condition is not specific to the individual such as caffeine. Caffeine has commonly been used as a laxative in the hospital setting so to say that it induces diarrhea would only confirm that is a reaction that many people have experienced before.
Lactose intolerance and fructose/ short chain carobyhydrate intolerance are the most commonly discussed food intolerances and can be tested with hydrogen breath testing. Lactose is a sugar found in milk and is an enzyme called lactase aids in it's digestion. Lactose intolerance is due to lactase deficiency and can occur early or later in life. Sometimes small a mounts of lactose can still be ingested in the forms of yogurt ie 15 mg but higher ingestions can lead to the symptoms discussed above. Fructose is another sugar found in many foods such as fruit or even high fructose corn syrup. Fructose intolerance is due to problems with transportation of fructose across the gut membrane and is proportional to glucose, another sugar, that is ingested in the same meal. This means that an ingestion of food containing mostly fructose and not a large amount of glucose can cause symptoms; however, if the fructose ingested is similar in proportion to glucose, the patient might not have any symptoms. In addition, digestion of short chain carbohydrates in addition to fructose and lactose such as fructans, galactans, and polyols can also cause symptoms but please refer to my FODMAP post for this information.
IBS or irritable bowel syndrome is a functional bowel disorder that is currently being researched but has been known about in the clinical world for many years. The etiology is thought to be multifactorial in nature. This topic would warrent a nutrition seminar in of itself. In addition, gluten sensitivity is also another multifactorial condition currently being studied and doesn't fit the exact etiology of celiac's disease. These conditions are can be treated with the FODMAP diet as discussed in a previous post on mine here. There are no direct tests for these conditions as the slide for food allergy testing lists some common unvalidated tests often used for these conditions as well. I would also add additional unvalidated tests include:fecal microbiotic analysis, salivary IgA, and intestinal permability.
1. Mahan L, Escott-Stump S, and Raymond J. Krause's Food and the Nutrition Care Process. 13th ed. Elsvier. 2012.
2. Turnbull J, Adams H, and Gorard D. Review article: the diagnosis and management of food allergy and food intolerances. Aliment Parhmacol Ther 2015; 41:3-25.
3. Lorner M, Review article: the aetiology, diagnosis, mechanisms and clinical evidence for food intolerance. Aliment Pharmacol Ther 2015; 41: 262-275.
Eat, Move, and Live Better!
The holiday season can be a tough time to stay healthy or even improve on your current health. One of the tactics Jonathan Senger from Sweat Equity Fitness and I discussed at this nutritional seminar were ways to identiy potential roadblocks, come up with a strategy, and consider possible options to deal with those roadblocks
Some of those nutritional roadblocks we identified included: holiday parties, travel, bad weather, family visits, holiday stress, and dining out. Stategies to deal with those stressors included bringing healthy options to outings, eating before going, drinking plenty of water, continuing exercise, travel packs of healthy food, and planning events around activity instead of food. The options included fruit and veggie plates, air popped popcorn, noncaloric fluids such as mineral water or tea, and homemade miso soup or oatmeal packets for travel. Remember the 3 ounce rule when traveling since many store bought options don't follow this rule but you can buy 3 ounce containers and fill them with peanut butter or yogurt and bring them in your carry on bag.
In an attempt to keep it simple, I attempted to reduced nutrition guidelines to a couple of simple rules. These rules include: hydrate; consume high quality nutrient dense foods; pay attention to serving sizes; moderate appetitie with frequent small meals; and plan ahead. There are plenty of charts out there on serving sizes but refer to your palm and hand if needed. Your thumb is two tablespoons, tip of the thumb is a teaspoon, palm is three ounces, and fist is one cup.
Another topic we discussed is mental wellness over the holiday season. Continue to try to get as much sleep as you need during the season to combat stress and getting run down. Plan time to destress and be proactive about it before you become a ticking time bomb that can explode at any moment. Sometimes even small amounts of time spread out throughout the week may help. Also try to be as efficient as possible on your busy days. When I am super busy, sometimes I turn the oven on bake and cut up whatever veggies I have available in my fridgerator. I spray them lightly with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and dried herbs like sage and thyme. I place the veggies in the oven when I start to get ready to head out the door then turn the oven off before I leave (remember to turn the over off!!!). Sometimes I am leaving for a bike ride or a run and I plan my route around my errands. When I get back, I have roasted veggies still warm in the oven and ready for dinner.
The last topic that Jonathan discussed was high intensity training. He has an amazing studio that focuses on training for busy people. His goal is to get all the exercise you need for a day into less then thirty minutes using minimal equipment and a heart rate moniter. Check out his website more of his story Sweat Equity Fitness.
Nutritional Seminar recap - A Fall Map to the FODMAP diet
So we had a great turn out for our Fall Map to the FODMAP diet at Natural Grocers in Green mountain. Key points to take away from the lecture included the following: what are FODMAPs, does the FODMAP diet work and for who, and some basic layout on how we start the implement the diet. I will try to answer these questions as briefly as possible in the following post.
What are FODMAPS?
FODMAPS is an ancronym for fermentable oligo, di, and mono saccharides..and polyols. These are basically short chain carbohydrates such as gluctans, fructans, lactose, fructose, and sugar alcohols. These carbohydrates usually draw water into the intestine during digestion and can cause bloating, abdomen pain, and gastrointestinal distress. This does not mean you have an allergy to them. However, some people suffer more from there effects than others.
Does the FODMAP Diet work and for who?
The FODMAP diet has been studied in several well known nutritional and gastrointestinal journals and has shown some promising results for patients suffering from irritable bowel disorder or functional bowel disorder, Crohn's, Ulcerative Colitis, Celiac's and even fibromyalgia to name a few. If you do a quick web search you can see the diet mentioned in multiple respected sources including Mayo Clinic, Cleveland Clinic, and US News and World Reports.
How to implement the FODMAP diet....
I proceed with caution at this point. The FODMAP diet is not a diet that is intended to cause someone to lose weight but is actually an elimination diet intended to identy possible triggers for GI distress. It is a difficult diet to implement and very complicated. In addition, sometimes it might not get to the root of the problem since it likely reduces sources of probiotics, prebiotics, and fiber that are helpful in allowing the bowel to heal. If you and your nutritional advisor determine this may be a path for you; the diet is often individualized based upon your tolerances to fructose or lactose based upon hydrogen breath testing. After that, an elimination process begins from anywhere from all FODMAP sources to only gluctans and polyols. Additional sources to help implement the diet include the MONASH food app for you android or iphone. However, the diet can become even more complicated since it not only involves FODMAPS you eat but also the amounts and what other foods you are eating as well. Below is a simple FODMAP chart from ibs.org.
Come join us at Sweat Equity in Lakewood on November 16th from 6:30-7:30 pm for a discussion on how to stay fit over the holidays!
Come join us on October 27th from 6pm to 7pm at the Green Mountain Natural Grocers for a discussion about the FODMAP diet and why it might be useful to you or your loved ones.
Come join us on 9/20/2016 at Natural Grocers Green Mountain from 6-7p for a discussion on sports nutrition and how to find sustainable nutrition alternatives in the endurance athlete.
For those with gardens it is a bumper time to cook easy, fast and healthy recipes that consume lots of fresh veggies. I used this recipe in my wedding since it produces a ton of food and many of the veggies can be switched out based upon what you have available.
Mediterranean Grain Salad
1 eggplant or beet
2 tomatoes large heriloom
2 squash or zucchini
1 onion prefer white
1 cup of dried wheat berries
4 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons fresh thyme
2 tablespoons fresh oregano
2 tablespoons fresh basil
2 tablespoons fresh parsley
1 bunch of collards or kale
olive oil spray
salt to taste
pepper to taste
1/8 cup lemon juice
1/8 cup olive oil
1/8 cup bragg's
1/8 cup red wine vinegar
1. Soak wheat berries overnight in warm water. You can either sprout them by soaking them and rinsing them 2 times per day for 3 days or cook them gently for 10 minutes after soaking for 24 hours then leave on stove covered so them can soak up the excess water. They should be soft and chewy when done. Drain prior to adding to the salad so the mixture is not too wet.
2. Roast veggies by chopping them into bite size pieces and spray lightly with olive oil and sprinkling with salt and pepper. The cloves can be cooked whole and peeled when finished. I recommend an oven setting of 350 for about 15 minutes and placing the collard in for the last 5 minutes inn order to not overcook them. Shut the oven off but the veggies will continue to cook as you prepare the rest of the salad.
3. Chop and prepare the fresh herbs.
4. Mix the dressing ingredients.
5. Combine when all the ingredients are cooled since it make the raw herbs taste better.
Note - you can swap out different veggies or herbs based upon the season to make the freshest salad. For those that are gluten intolerant you can switch to rice instead of wheat berries. I added a soft cashmere cheese from Haystack farms to my salad for an excellent pairing.
So I am still 3 classes away from completing my masters in applied nutrition but continue to experiment with new vegan diets and improving my nutrition for sports including triathlon. Lately I have been sticking to a macrobiotic diet focusing on eating a diet high in vegetables and whole grains that are seasonal in nature. I noticed that I am sleeping better and have more energy when using this diet combined with proper nutritional timing.
My morning typically involves a green smoothie with fruit, kale, nuts,and hemp seed protein before my morning swim or run and follow this with a bowl of whole grains with nuts. Workout 2 is usually on the bike or a longer run session and is the main workout of the day. This is followed by a lunch with a lean veggie protein like tofu, cooked veggies, and a whole grain like soba noodles with an apple. Sometimes there is a third workout in the day and this is followed by an afternoon snack like a green salad with artichokes, sundried tomatoes, and garbanzo beans. Dinner is usually another heaping salad with more tofu, cooked veggies, greens, and miso soup with whole grains.
Above is a pizza and salad I made with home grown onions and greens and vegan soy cheese. Below are my favorite cook books for this way of eating. I really think this diet works well with athletes due to the balanced consumption to vegetables and whole grains. I do increase my protein and fruit sources a little more to improve recovery after workouts.
So after a rough start to race season with maybe a little more fault on me for focusing more on the training then recovery side of things...I decided to try veganism again as well as proper nutrient timing. I am now about half way through my nutrition degree and honestly have learned more from my real life experience with sports nutrition then my masters. My garden is blooming and I have so many greens in my fridge, that timed with my library book of Brendan's newest Thrive Energy Cookbook that is seemed to go hand in hand. I have been doing my green smoothies in the morning with nuts and a small teaspoon of yerba mate and this has worked well with my early morning swims, bricks, track workouts, and even off days. I have given up coffee and definitely feel like my energy level is more even and I am sleeping better....also more important for recovery. I usually save of the smoothie for after my workout or do another for a prolonged brick and do homemade veggie black bean burgers or bean bowls with lots of veggies for dinner. I have started to lean up this year with better timing of nutrition ie no late night snacking and my biggest meal is after my workout at lunch time or earlier and the increase in my training. I used to log all the calories I consumed but now since I have given up processed sugar, wheat, milk, and meat I don't log anything and have noticed my diet is more regular. I know what works for someone might not work for everyone, but this works for me. I will also add, it is a sustainable diet as well which is very important to me. Being a little bit of a hippie with my porch composter, worms, bike antics, ARC raids, and other lifestyle choices....sustainability is very important to me. I believe this diet is sustainable and also reduces my reliance on grocery store trips with relying more on my local garden, sprouting, and farmer's marker.