Beth Baldino, MSW, CHHC
Certified Holistic Health Counselor
(973) 979-6951

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Greens, Glorious Greens

Green vegetables are the foods most missing in our diets. Learning to cook and eat greens is essential to creating health. When you nourish yourself with dark, leafy greens you will automatically crowd out some of the foods that aren’t as healthy. Greens help build your internal rain forest and strengthen the blood and respiratory systems. Green is associated with spring, the time of renewal, refreshment and vital energy. In Asian medicine, green is related to the liver, emotional stability and creativity.

Nutritionally, greens are very high in calcium, magnesium, iron, potassium, phosphorus, zinc, and vitamins A, C, E and K. They are full of fiber, folic acid, chlorophyll and many other micronutrients and phyto-chemicals.

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The Classic Master Cleanse

Many people ask me about cleansing programs and whether they could be helpful for them. In the same way it makes sense to clear out old junk before starting a renovation, a cleanse can be a means of helping the body to release toxic weight as you embark upon a new healthier lifestyle and approach to food.  A cleanse can be a means of “jump-starting” the whole process. It is recommended that you work with a holistic health expert before starting any kind of cleanse.

Would you benefit from a cleanse?

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Recipe: Edamame with Cranberries, Feta & Basil

Edamame are fresh soy beans, the young pods of the soybean plant. Soy is an inexpensive, high-quality, vitamin- and mineral-rich plant protein with lots of soluble fiber and plant-based omega-3 fatty acids. It is also the richest known source of powerful health-promoting phyto-estrogens, which are natural plant protectants that can also provide us with protection against various diseases. The best way to eat soy is in its whole state, as used here, or fermented in the form of natto, miso, tempeh, and naturally-fermented soy sauces (shoyu and tamari).

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Keys to Cancer Prevention-Advice from Dr. David Servan Schreiber

“Every day, three times a day, I am building an anti-cancer biology, and anyone can do that, we just need to tell people how.”

This is what Dr. David Servan Schreiber, cancer-survivor and author of Anti-Cancer: A New Way of Life, says about his diet. He argues that while we are all exposed to cancer-stimulating factors, mainly through our diets and lifestyle choices, we have a profound ability to control our own health by avoiding certain foods and consuming others in larger quantities.

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Recipe: Kale with Raisins and Toasted Pine Nuts

This dish, featured in the book, Greens Glorious Greens by Johnna Albi & Catherine Walthers, is one of the most delicious ways I’ve found to prepare kale, a food we want more of in our diets for all its health-promoting effects. Known as a “superfood” because it is such an excellent source of nutrients including vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin B6 and manganese, it is also a very good source of dietary fiber, calcium, copper, vitamin B6, and potassium. Kale has also been shown in various studies to be associated with a lower incidence of various cancers, due to the high levels of active phytochemicals it contains.  Furthermore, the carotenoids found in this vegetable, especially lutein and zeaxanthin, provide a protective effect against the risk of cataracts.

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Recipe: Spiced Lentils

Beans are a rich source of protein, fiber, minerals including iron, potassium, and magnesium, and vitamins like folate. They also contain phytochemicals like flavonoids, anti-oxidants that help the body avoid oxygen-related damage. Their health benefits include blood-sugar maintenance, cancer-prevention, and promoting heart health. Beans can also play an important role in weight management, as they provide lots of satisfying “bulk” without a lot of calories.

Lentils are a particularly good source of cholesterol-lowering fiber. They are also provide special benefits in managing blood-sugar disorders since their high fiber content prevents blood sugar levels from rising rapidly after a meal. They also provide good to excellent amounts of six important minerals, two B-vitamins, and protein-all with virtually no fat.

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Recipe: White Bean Arugula Salad with Honey-Mustard Dressing

Beans are a rich source of protein, fiber, minerals including iron, potassium, and magnesium, and vitamins like folate. They also contain phytochemicals like flavonoids, anti-oxidants that help the body avoid oxygen-related damage. Their health benefits include blood-sugar maintenance, cancer-prevention, and promoting heart health. Beans can also play an important role in weight management, as they provide lots of satisfying “bulk” without a lot of calories.

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Recipe: Quinoa Mexican-style with Black Beans & Corn

Quinoa is considered to be a “superfood,” having such a well balanced amino acid profile that it is considered a complete protein. It is also a very good source of manganese, magnesium, iron, copper and phosphorous. This makes it a great food for those who suffer from migraines, diabetes, atherosclerosis and cardiovascular disease. It is also a rich source of fiber, which can provide protection against a variety of cancers, gallstones and diabetes.

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