The Benefits of a Plant-Based Diet/Butternut Squash Soup

The Benefits of a Plant-Based Diet/Butternut Squash Soup
By Elaine Bryan

While there are many different styles of eating these days, as there has always been, research continues to validate the many health benefits of eating more plant-based.  And quite a few of us don’t even realize that the foods we eat often have more of an impact on our health than anything else in our lives.  Even over physical activity, managing stress, adequate sleep, social connectedness – because food also impacts all of those areas as well!  And each bite we eat moves us more towards health or disease – It’s all our choice.

What does plant-based even mean?  Dr. Colin Campbell, author of the book “The China Study” emphasizes this: “Nutrition must be wholistic: looking at countless nutrients and mechanisms that control many diseases”.  Over years of experience and research, it has been found that plant foods contain nutrients in the healthiest ratio (except B12 and D) for the human body.  Instead of focusing on individual nutrients, a whole food plant-based diet emphasizes the symphony of nutrient composition that has been proven to be optimal for human health.

For this reason, it has been said that a whole food plant-based dietary lifestyle then maximizes the intake of whole, plant foods and minimizes the intake of processed and animal-derived foods.  The diet lifestyle is centered around vegetables, fruits, whole grains, beans, (legumes), herbs, spices, and nuts and seeds.

The benefits have been shown to be many and include a meta-analysis study done in 2017 at Imperial College in London.  This study looked at populations worldwide and included up to 2 million people and diseases such as heart disease, cancer, stroke, and more.  It analyzed over 95 studies on fruit and vegetable intake and found the greatest benefit came from eating the equivalent of about 10 portions daily.  In the research, which was published in the International Journal of Epidemiology, the team estimated approximately 7.8 million premature deaths could be potentially prevented every YEAR if people ate 10 portions of fruit and vegetables a day!

This is significant information to know!

It makes sense because the plant-based benefits include many such as reducing chronic inflammation, decrease in cancer risk and slowing the progression of certain cancers, cardiovascular benefits, improvement in immune function, improvement in diabetes and blood sugar management, increase in energy, sleep, mood and mental clarity and much more.

It has been shown that anti-cancer molecules in certain plant foods can be used to create an environment that is hostile to tumors.  This daily intake of these incredible plant foods can then assist in creating the defense mechanisms and environment that can be more protective in the body overall.

One of the plant foods that is beneficial and widely available during the fall/winter and holiday season is squash.  One of the favorites is butternut squash and it can be used to make a warming, satisfying soup or even roasted and stuffed with kale, mushrooms including immune-boosting shitake mushrooms, garlic and onions, some nuts, and quinoa.  All with their own protective, beneficial plant molecules.

Butternut squash itself contains a substance called beta-cryptoxanthin that has been repeatedly found to lower the risk of lung cancer. By eating foods such as butternut squash, it has been estimated that the risk of lung cancer can decrease between 15-40%.  It has also been shown that taking supplements of these plant chemicals or phytochemicals (nutrients) that are in astounding numbers in these plant foods does not have the same effect as eating the plant in whole food and may even increase health risks.  Beta-cryptoxanthin can also be found in tangerines, persimmons, and spices such as cayenne pepper, paprika, and chili powder.

The butternut squash also has protective lutein and zeaxanthin that is found in yellow fruits and vegetables and can protect your eyes, and the beta carotene in these plants such as squash are beneficial for heart health as well as supporting the immune system. See below for a Curried Butternut Squash Soup that will help keep you warm and nourished this season!

Beta carotene has also been shown to promote communication between cells, which has been shown to quell the growth of cancer cells, according to a 2020 article in the journal Food Science and Nutrition.

Making these plant foods in a large variety of different colors every day into your diet lifestyle a huge win!

For more information about Elaine Bryan, and for even more yummy and nutritious recipes and tips, visit http://www.bodyandsoulnourishment.com/.


Curried Butternut Squash soup

2-3 Tbsp coconut oil or veggie broth, or Avocado oil spray

¾ cup onions or chopped leeks

1 teaspoon minced garlic

½-1 tsp curry powder

3 cups of vegetable broth

2-3 cups of filtered water

1 can of full fat coconut milk

1 medium-sized butternut squash (peeled and diced into 1-2 inch pieces)

1 teaspoon dried thyme

Sea salt and ground pepper to taste

2 Tablespoons nutritional yeast (optional)

 

Heat the oil, vegetable broth or use avocado spray in a saucepan and add the chopped onion/leeks, garlic and the curry powder (if desired).

Saute a few minutes until onion and garlic are fragrant.

Add in the cubed butternut squash, the vegetable broth and the filtered water to get to the consistency desired.

Note:  You can roast the butternut squash first if desired and then add to the soup and cook less time as the squash will already be cooked.

Cover and simmer until the squash is softened which will be about 20-25 minutes.

If you like the soup somewhat chunky, you can use a masher to mash the ingredients up, or use an immersion blender to blend, or transfer carefully to a high speed blender to blend together until smooth.

Transfer back to pot and add the thyme, salt and pepper, and optional nutritional yeast.  Remove from the heat and add the coconut milk.  Stir and serve!

 

food prevent cancer

Foods that Prevent Cancer

“The Key to Starving Cancer: High Fiber & A Healthy Gut”
A Blog Post by Elissa Goodman

Have you heard the idea that we can “starve” our cancer cells? I am not only talking about limiting the harmful foods that fuel their growth. Sure, for most people who have cancer, it is imperative to significantly limit certain foods, like sugar, processed foods and low-quality animal protein, that encourage cancer cells to grow even more. We know that a poor diet is a key factor in increasing your cancer risk. But it goes even further than food being used as cancer fuel. There is a magical aspect of our bodies that actually works to starve cancer from the inside out: the potent cancer-fighting cells that live in our gastrointestinal tract.

If you have taken a basic biology or anatomy class, you have likely heard about the cells that work to strengthen and support the immune system. Like me, your high school years may be a bit behind you, but does the term “Helper T Cell” ring a bell to you? T Cells are the most critical cancer fighting immune cells in the human body – and research shows that a whopping seventy percent (!!!) of them reside alongside the lining of the GI tract. This is hugely significant because it means that they can be affected by whatever they interact with – the foods we eat and the medications we take. On top of keeping the immune cells in the gut healthy, it is important to keep the rest of the microbiome in the intestinal tract functioning optimally as well because it all relies on each other.

Over the years, the research has seemed to show that, in general, the more variation in intestinal microflora (also known us gut bacteria) someone has, the better their T Cells will stand up to some forms of cancer and the better their immunotherapy response will be. What scientists and doctors are now finding is that it is not just one kind of bacteria in a probiotic that they can prescribe to cancer patients to help with immunotherapy. In fact, recent data has shown that in some cases prescribing a probiotic prior to treatment made the treatment less effective – sometimes by a significant degree. However, what health professionals are discovering is that there is something else they can “prescribe” to increase the likelihood of effective immunotherapy treatment: fiber.

Yes, a high-fiber diet has been shown to increase the chances of successful immunotherapy treatment by fivefold! This is because the good bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract feed off of fiber. So, while it is important to have a healthy microbiome within the gut, it is also very important to be feeding it the correct nutrients. Unfortunately, the data is still limited on what, exactly, the best nutrients are for an optimal gut microbiome for cancer patients. One of the main roadblocks on modern research is the fact that pharmaceutical companies are willing to invest in trials that revolve around immunotherapy drugs, but not on nutrition. That is because there is a lot of money in the medication industry, but it is much harder to patent a certain type of eating pattern than a drug. One thing is clear: a healthy gut positively impacts immunotherapy. There are some steps that you can take today to ensure that your gut microbiome is as healthy as possible – especially if you or a loved one has been diagnosed with cancer.

Reduce toxic trigger foods in your diet such as gluten, dairy, sugar, GMO corn & soy, hydrogenated fats, high-fructose corn syrup, artificial sweeteners, processed foods and anything you might be allergic or have a sensitivity to: a food allergy can cause an immune system reaction that affects numerous organs and can be life-threatening. Consider taking a daily probiotic to regenerate healthy bacteria in your gut and improve your immune system (unless you are about to begin immunotherapy treatment in which case, speak with your doctor about whether probiotic supplementation is a good idea for you). My favorite brands for probiotics are Seed, Renew Life and Dr. Ohhira’s. You can also add fermented foods into your diet because they have live probiotic cultures that work to increase the health of your gut and immune system. Some of my favorite fermented foods include coconut kefir, coconut yogurt kefir, sauerkraut, kimchi, kombucha, tempeh, and unpasteurized miso.

You can also supplement daily with L-glutamine, which supports digestion by helping to maintain the mucosal lining of the intestinal tract, which, in turn, supports immune function. Also, it is used throughout the body for tissue repair and immune support. Pure Encapsulations has a fantastic L-Glutamine supplement. I also recommend regularly drinking gut-healing bone broth or adding collagen powder to your nutrient routine. Bone broth contains gelatin- one of the most important nutrients for healing and sealing the gut. It essentially spackles holes in the gut lining, preventing food and bacteria from leaking. My favorite collagen powder is Further Food. You can also take a digestive enzyme because they help to breakdown food better and extract more nutrients. Enzymedica Digest Gold ATPro is wonderful for this. Finally, and most important, add fiber to your diet! Not only does a high-fiber diet fuel the good bacteria in the gut, as I mentioned earlier, it also reduces levels of disease-causing bacteria. We need a minimum of 25 – 35 grams of fiber per day and many people are not consuming anywhere close to that. Some of my favorite sources of fiber are chia seeds, berries, avocados, various legumes and flax seeds.

As always, please speak with a doctor before beginning a new supplement. Happy gut healing!

This post was originally published on Elissa Goodman’s website at – https://elissagoodman.com/health/cancer-fighting-gut-cells/ and The Foundation for Living Beauty was given permission by Elissa to republish on our blog.

To learn more about Elissa Goodman, please visit, https://elissagoodman.com/

The recommendations above are based on the author’s research and findings and do not guarantee the prevention of cancer.

cancer causing food

Cancer Causing Foods

The Case for Effective Anti-Cancer Lifestyle Therapies
A Blog Post by Elaine Bryan, Body and Soul Nourishment for The Foundation for Living Beauty

 It has become more apparent than ever after extensive research on cancer by modern medicine for at least the last 40 years, that cancer rates are still increasing.  We are also finding a rise in premature deaths from related causes due to compromised body systems due to the inherent stress on the individual.  They are finding that some cancers are treated with a good amount of success but complimenting therapies with integrative lifestyle therapies is imperative to support the whole person in both prevention as well as during treatment of cancer.

Scientists now believe that the aspects of lifestyle related to our diets and weight are responsible for 1/3 of all cancers, a percentage as high as the cause from tobacco.  Genetics plays a smaller role in these diagnoses, while malnutrition from an inadequate diet (or situation of not absorbing your nutrients correctly) contributes to the majority of the risk of developing cancer.  Our view of eating has been based on an act of merely refueling, a quick and easy way to supply the body with energy essential for our survival centered around calorie consumption.  While fruits and vegetables which are low in calories, tend to play a limited role where diets full of an abundance of sugar and fat take precedence in most American diets.  Other areas contributing to the risk of cancer include our detoxification system of toxic chemical exposures, our stress management and even our sunlight exposure.  If our immune and detoxification systems are supported correctly, we will have a stronger defense system when exposed to these toxic chemicals in the environment as cancer cells rely on a certain environment that is favorable to their growth.  Working with inhibiting the creation of that pro-carcinogenic environment is essential to stop cancer from developing and supporting the system at all stages of cancer as well.

Researchers are finding compelling and expanding data showing that radiation and various chemicals in our environment are linked to cases of breast cancer, as well as many other cancers. These environmental toxins include exposure in a person’s life including our personal care products, household products, our food, water and sources of radiation as well.  Thus, reducing and eliminating pesticides, herbicides, hormones in foods and chemicals that leach from packaging materials into foods can assist in decreasing our overall toxic load.  To find the current 2019 list of the cleanest, and the dirtiest fruits and vegetables from the Environmental Working Group, visit www.ewg.org.

In his book, “The China Study,” Dr. Colin Campbell states that food wins contaminants every time, meaning “the positive impact of anticancer molecules win out over the negative effect of carcinogens.” So if you change your diet, you change your risk and possible outcome!

Research is finding that a low-fat plant-based diet is key and they have also concluded that people who ate the most fruits and vegetables have half the cancer rates as those who ate the least!

Some of the problematic foods in our western diet include:

  • Dietary fats – Diets high in dietary fats are linked to high levels of sex hormones, carcinogens, and mutagens. The compounds live in fat and don’t metabolize out of fat easily, so obtaining cancer-promoting compounds through these high fats, fried and processed foods with fats can be damaging.  Omega-6 fats that are highly processed are soybean oils, sunflower oil, corn oil, and cottonseed oil.  Not all fat is damaging; as the Omega-3 fats help reduce inflammation and are found in wild fish, grass-finished animals (in moderation), free-roaming, cage-free chickens and eggs, seaweed-like kelp, raw walnuts, pumpkins seeds, hemp and chia seeds.
  • High sugar, processed foods – Cancer cells are primary sugar feeders and uptake glucose at 10-12 times the rate of healthy cells and they also suppress the immune system.
  • Foods with animal origin are showing a strong connection in certain cases of an increased risk of cancer.

The top foods that have been found to be protective for all cancers include the alliaceous family which includes garlic, leeks, and scallions.

Immediately following is the cruciferous family which includes broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, cabbage, kale, arugula, bok choy, collards, watercress, and radishes.  These vegetables have a profound ability to shield cells from several processes that can transform healthy cells into malignant tumors.  The phytochemicals in those veggies are somewhat fragile so chewing and how you prepare them is important to protect some of these protective chemicals.

Some of the other many protective plants that have been found include wild blueberries, organic apples, blackberries, raspberries, red beans, artichoke hearts and many more.

Spices and herbs such as turmeric, garlic, ginger, chili peppers, mint, marjoram, thyme, basil, oregano and rosemary all have amazing food phytochemicals that add flavor to our foods at the same time protect our cells.

Other protective constituents have been discovered in plants such as green tea, pomegranates, many varieties of mushrooms and dark chocolate.

All of these foods have important fiber that assists the body in removing toxins and waste as well.  Gluten-free grains including quinoa, millet, amaranth as well as nuts, seeds and flaxseeds, chia and hemp seeds are all very beneficial.

Everyone is different and thus should be checked by your practitioner for any food sensitivities, intolerances or nutrient deficiencies to obtain the best results with nutritional therapies!

To learn more about Elaine Bryan, visit www.bodyandsoulnourishment.com.

The recommendations above are based on the author’s research and findings and do not guarantee the prevention of cancer.

Share Love with Teamotions

“Teach a woman how to put her heart first and she will change the world.”

— Rachel and Crystal Tenpenny, co-founders of Teamotions

 

This World Cancer Day, Rachel and Crystal Tenpenny of Teamotions sat down with us to share their story and their company’s philosophies on comforting and empowering women through tea. Keep reading for a glimpse into their story, and to learn how they are generously supporting The Foundation for Living Beauty through an exclusive tea bundle. 

Can you share a little bit about your company’s story/journey?

Long before Crystal and I started Teamotions, we were sisters. In 2008, my baby daughters died a few weeks after they were born. In the months following, Crystal and I spent as much time together as we could navigating this unexpected and heartbreaking tragedy. I sought help, scoured the internet, attended grief groups, and read books, but at the end of the day, it just wasn’t enough. We were both feeling the frustration of needing more but not knowing what more was.

I always had a cup of tea in my hand no matter where I was or what I was doing. One morning, I was having a particularly hard time, so Crystal wedged herself next to me in the big brown armchair I often sat in and said, “I wish there was something I could put in your tea to make you feel better.” At that moment we both looked at each other and knew we had to create a tea that could make people feel better!

Without hesitation, we began our research. We read books, made phone calls, consulted with doctors, naturopaths, and herbalists. We attended expos to learn as much as we could about the tea industry, wellness, emotional health and healing, and, of course, launching a business. We quickly discovered that a product like ours didn’t exist. There were teas for tummy aches and sore throats, for sleep and energy, but no teas for emotional needs.
And that is when Teamotions was born. It took us a year and a half to formulate our blends, making sure every ingredient was purposeful, every blend was beautiful, and every sip was therapeutic and delicious. Teamotions line of teas is the first (and only) line of teas specifically for emotional well-being and healing.

Teamotions teas are the foundation I built my healing on. I still drink them, and so does Crystal, every day in fact. They have helped both of us take better care of our hearts in every season of our lives. We hope our story inspires you to use Teamotions teas to take better care of your heart too and cultivate emotional well-being with every sip.
How can tea help heal spiritually and physically during a cancer journey?

Cancer is a difficult journey for so many reasons. Every cancer journey is different and so many factors are simply not in control of the cancer patient. It can leave patients feeling helpless, frustrated, and overwhelmed. Facing cancer treatment can be more tolerable emotionally when patients empower themselves to be proactive with activities and choices they can control instead of only focusing on what they cannot control. Choosing a tea ritual carves out a time every single day to actually do something that comforts the body and soul, carves out time to check-in emotionally, and nourishes the body with the adaptogen herbs Teamotions includes in every signature blend. Every cup of Teamotions tea is an outward expression of an inward commitment to essential self-care through every stage of a cancer journey and beyond.

What were some of the special aspects of the Healing Tea Ritual?

Cultivating a Healing Tea Ritual with Teamotions teas offers two important benefits. The first benefit is the physiological effect of the adaptogen herbs – safe and effective herbs that restore balance, increase inner strength, and improve your body’s resistance to stress on a physical level. The second benefit is the effect habitual teatime has on brain neurology. A tea ritual helps your brain shift from Beta waves to Alpha waves. Beta waves help you make decisions needed for survival and short term needs but Alpha waves make it possible for you to comprehend more philosophical concepts like hope, dreams, goals, purpose, and intention. It is these kinds of concepts that help us persevere in the midst of hard seasons and motivate us to transcend merely surviving. Each cup of Teamotions tea becomes a powerful tool for healing.

How did you see Living Beauties heal/reflect/grow during the Ritual? What were their reactions?

Living Beauties were soothed, inspired, and grounded by Teamotions Tea Ritual. It was their time to check in with themselves, honor their unselfish need for self-care, and recognize the importance of ritual emotionally and physically.

What teas would you recommend in particular to help with inflammation?

For inflammation, I’d recommend Have Hope. It’s a caffeine free peppermint tea with St. John’s Wort, holy basil, and oat straw. The oat straw in this blend especially helps with inflammation because it is high in minerals. Minerals help restore PH balance in the body and correct PH fights inflammation in the body.
What teas would you recommend for emotional / spiritual calm?

For inner peace, I’d recommend Seek Peace, a coconut rooibos chai with liver support herbs dandelion root and milk thistle. The purpose of this tea is to help release pent up and stuffed down emotions by supporting the liver and improving circulation in the body to move stagnant feeling out and emotional peace in.

 

Shop the Teamotions Living Beauty bundle, and 35% of sales will be donated to The Foundation for Living Beauty.

Meet The Pizza Plant

We are so grateful and excited to join forces with The Pizza Plant! The Pasadena restaurant’s plant-based comfort food is healthy, vegan and delicious. Led by founder Marvin V Acuna, The Pizza Plant has generously offered to support The Foundation for Living Beauty on an ongoing basis. When you place your online order at www.thepizzaplant.com, please enter Goddess in the promo code box. Living Beauty will receive 10% of proceeds from all orders who use this code – including catering orders!

Before (or after) you grab a slice, continue reading to learn how The Pizza Plant decided to support Living Beauties, and why they believe in the power of plant-based living.

LB: What can people expect diet/lifestyle wise from The Pizza Plant?

MA: Our human need for community and connection is as fundamental as our need for food. Food is in fact the bridge to community and connection as well as being the centerpiece of most of the major milestones in our lives.

Food connects people from all walks of life. Over a meal, people can experience and share a wide range of emotions. They can celebrate together, express love for each other, and convey heartbreak and disappointment; they can form and foster business and personal relationships;
and so much more.

Arguably the most popular food in the world, and therefore undeniably one of the leading foods that bring people together, is pizza.

THE PIZZA PLANT with its 100% organic, whole-food, nutrient-dense, made-with-love, craveable, plant-based pizza, is committed to building community and to making the world a better place.
LB: What are the benefits of plant-based eating?

MA: I’d happily put you in contact with one of the foremost experts in the world on this subject as she would be more qualified to respond. However, to quote the father of medicine, Hippocrates, “Let food be thy medicine, and medicine be thy food.” Plants are our medicine.

That stated, our company motto, we believe says it all. Better Planet. Better Health. Better Community.

LB: How were you drawn to The Foundation for Living Beauty?

MA: One of the most cherished people in my life was afflicted by a very rare, unpredictable, and incurable disease. Yet, due to the unwavering support of our friends and family she has gone from her deathbed to a world stage inspiring others to overcome chronic illnesses and/or life challenges.

We were fortunate to have unlimited resources to focus on her healing. Other individuals are not as lucky. The fact that this organization steps in and provides the necessary healing tools, positive resources and a safe haven for women afflicted with such a devastating diagnosis spoke to the values of my company. Upon meeting Nancy Davidson and Michael Rahimzadeh, it was apparent to me that our company had to find a creative way to lend our support.

LB: Why is helping the community so central to your business?

MA: My parents did not live a fanciful life. They were never confused by anyone who met them as the subjects of a John Singer Sargent portrait. They did not drive the most luxurious cars, they did not wear the hippest fashion, they did not dine at the trendiest restaurants, they did not travel the world in private jets, and they did not have an instagram account with millions of followers who enthusiastically liked and shared their posts, showcasing themselves flanked by the beautiful and famous.

No, they were not fazed nor trapped by those shiny objects that often distract us from the true meaning of our lives.

Instead, my parents drove a simple car, they wore simple clothes, they preferred mom-and-pop restaurants, their most extravagant trip was the treacherous, many-thousand-mile trek they made by foot at night crossing the borders of Guatemala, Mexico, and finally, the U.S.

Yet, my parents walked this earth armed with the secret to happiness and riches.

Give to your neighbors.

A Vegan or Gluten Free Thanksgiving

With Thanksgiving one week away, we’ve spent the week thinking about finding healthier alternatives to heavy Thanksgiving classics. Without further ado, let’s start with the sides:

Many of our facilitators consider sweet potatoes a nutritional superfood, and a delicious sweet potato casserole is usually a staple at our tables! This vegan, sugar-free version from Oh She Glows eliminates the cream and extra sugar sometimes loaded into sweet potato recipes – with 51 reviews averaging nearly five stars, we’re guessing the gluten free crunchy nut crumble on top is worth savoring!

Sweet Potato Casserole

 

PC: Oh She Glows

 

We all love getting on the gravy train – but since extra fats + oils aren’t ideal, this delicious Vegan gravy recipe from Fat Free Vegan is a perfect substitution. It’s so easy to make that you’ll have enough to pour over gluten free biscuits, potatoes and more.

 

 

PC: Fat Free Vegan

 

Green beans are a healthy Thanksgiving staple – this Bon Appétit recipe keeps them healthy without forgoing a special holiday touch – in this case, tomato-almond pesto.

 

PC: Bon Appétit, Christopher Testani

 

And for the main event…Now that it’s fall, we’ve been stuffing acorn squash with EVERYTHING – you can make enchilada boats, soup bowls and more out of these beauties. We love Martha Stewart‘s idea to stuff them with quinoa and pistachios for a high-protein turkey alternative. If you’d like a touch of cheese-like richness, substitute feta cheese for nutritional yeast.

 

 

PC: Martha Stewart / Johnny Miller

Valentine’s Day: Chocolate Meets its Healthier Match

With Valentine’s Day around the corner, it might seem like there is chocolate on every shelf, every counter and every menu in town. It’s one of our favorite tasty treats, but it is also packed with sugar and even caffeine. We did some digging and came up with a brilliant alternative for baking, trail mix and snacking.

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Carob comes from a tropical plant and has much less sugar than chocolate. Plus, it is naturally sweeter, so it needs less artificial ingredients to become a palatable treat. Carob is also low in fat and has plenty of calcium and fiber.

Markets like Whole Foods carry carob chips, which look almost identical to chocolate chips. Use them for low-sugar baking, melt them down into a warm drink, use them for a healthier fondue, throw them into trail mix or make protein-packed nut clusters.

Here are our favorite carob-worthy recipes and treats:

DAIRY AND CHOCOLATE-FREE HOT (COCOA) CAROB

TRAIL MIX IDEAS WITH CAROB

VEGAN CAROB BANANA BREAD

CAROB-COVERED RAISINS

Happy Healthy Thanksgiving!

The holidays can be a challenging time to eat well, especially with so many delicious options around Thanksgiving. Ever wondered how to make a traditional Thanksgiving, just a lot healthier? We’ve rounded up some tasty ideas for healthy Thanksgiving dinner alternatives, plus some dishes that take minimal time and labor. This way, you can embrace the holiday while caring for your health and enjoying as much time as possible with family and friends.

If you love pumpkin pie…Try a vegan and gluten free version

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via 84th and 3rd

If you love rich green bean casserole…Try green beans protein of nuts and antioxidants of cranberries!

string-beans

via real simple

If you love creamed corn…try a recipe with less butter that’s sweetened completely with honey!

If you love loads of moist stuffing…try this grain-free vegetable root stuffing!

Savory grain free vegetable stuffing

via wellness mama

And finally, if you’re looking to save some time and labor in the kitchen, but enjoy just as tasty of a bird, we recommend trying Cornish game hens! Everyone can help make their own mini bird, bringing the family together not just around the table, but in the kitchen, too.

A VERY HAPPY THANKSGIVING TO OUR LIVING BEAUTIES, SUPPORTERS AND COMMUNITY!

Happy October! Pumpkin Paradise is Here!

Walk through the aisles at Trader Joe’s, and there’s no denying that autumn is officially here. Pumpkin bars, seeds, bread, jam, pasta sauce, salsa…you name it, it’s there! Before you get to carving, consider munching, too. Turns out, pumpkins and their seeds have a whole patch of health benefits.

Remember how mom told you to eat your carrots for good eyesight? The same goes for bright orange pumpkins! Carotenoids are converted by the body into Vitamin A and work as a boost for proper peepers.

Pumpkins are also a large, healthy source of fiber, so a pumpkin snack will help keep you full and satisfied. This may be helpful for wait and diet management.

Just like other nuts and seeds, pumpkin seeds are a particularly healthy snack choice. They have chemicals known to reduce cholesterol and help with heart protection and blood pressure. Plus, they are known to provide a mood boost!

As for specific cancer benefits, pumpkins are a good choice. Full of antioxidants (just like cranberries and other similar fruits and veggies), pumpkins also have plant sterols that may help with cancer prevention and limitation. These same characteristics can help keep skin wrinkles and discoloration at bay. Pumpkins are also a hot source for Vitamin C, widely regarded to boost the immune system when consumed at healthy levels. In fact, consuming one cup of cooked canned pumpkin would cover 100% of your daily Vitamin A intake and 20% of your daily Vitamin C intake.

Check out Huffington Post and Medical News Daily for more information. In the mean time, get carving and munching! Here are some of our favorite healthy pumpkin recipes. They’re a total treat.

Simple Pumpkin Soup

SIMPLE-Pumpkin-Soup-with-Sesame-Kale-Topping-vegan-glutenfree

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

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Vegan Pumpkin Pie

No-Bake-Pumpkin-Pie-minimalistbaker.com-vegan-glutenfree

Pumpkin Chai Tea Latte 

skinny-pumpkin-chai-latte-3