We all need food to survive but to live well and free of disease eating the right type of food is necessary.


It’s not what you get too much of but what you get too little of…

And what do we want to be getting more of in our diets? Plants, in all the colors of the rainbow and lots of them. Benefits…too numerous to mention such as increases in energy, fewer digestive issues, “feeling better and lighter” etc. Plants are loaded with things called antioxidants which are basically like pac men gobbling up things called free radicals which left to their own devices cause cells to break down. All these antioxidants also help reduce inflammation (see previous blog) and creates a strong immune system.

And remember the secret at Mountain Trek for those of you who have been with us…salad dressings. Dressing up your veggies creates a whole taste experience to have with your greens. Making your own is the best but supermarkets are carrying more “healthy” pre-made dressings.

My Year of Eating Less Meat

One of my New Year’s resolutions (besides mastering the use of chopsticks), is to reduce and possibly eliminate my consumption of meat and poultry. I’m not a high consumer of meat, never have been and I always considered myself a compassionate carnivore; I buy and eat only organic meats and eat only wild fish. It’s not for ethical or environmental reasons I’m doing this (although I am aware of the impact of consuming meat has on the earth) it’s more like my body is telling me this. Each time I go to the market looking at the array of meat I can buy, I just can’t do it, doesn’t feel right. No sound reason for it, it just is. I’ve never gone fully vegetarian probably never will I’ll be more like quasi-vegetarian. I think that would best describe what my goal is this year to be a quasi-vegetarian. Sometimes eat meat more likely not.

Legumes, lentils and beans always come to mind as a meat substitute (I can’t eat soya products). Endless cookbooks on the variations of what to do with them like veggie burgers, chili, and simply adding them in a salad. I did experiment with lentils, made the MT Captain Ainsworth soup, sans the turkey adding in cooked lentils instead. Wow! What a pleasant and satisfying soup! I had worried that not using the turkey juices would lessen the taste but was mistaken. I made the soup again (I’m invested in cooking most of MT recipes for the upcoming soon to be published official MT cookbook..watch for it) this time I added in a can of pre-made dal which again pleasantly surprised me on how awesome it tasted.

And then there’s quinoa. Challenged like the rest of the population in what to eat for breakfast, quinoa will make for a delicious and warm breakfast. It’s actually a seed not a grain and reportedly yields 18 grams per cooked cup (in case you are counting). I’m even considering using quinoa for sushi rolls but that will be another cooking adventure.

I’m excited about my entry to the semi-vegetarian world. I’ve always known about the beans, lentils etc, but to be honest with you, I was a bit lazy on tackling them thinking it would be time consuming and perhaps, not that appealing. I love proving myself wrong.

I’ll keep you posted on my new found culinary discoveries, my disasters and my pleasures.

till then…signing off..jp..who still is clumsy using chopsticks but committed.

A Brand New Year…2010…

I had every intention of writing a list of New Year’s resolutions for this blog before 2010 descended upon me. However, like all good intentions, things get in the way. I have a good excuse (as far as excuses go) as Mountain Trek’s Turkey Burn program was in full force and I can say I hit the ground snowshoeing after the holidays. Whew! We were a full house of 14 guests, some new to our snowshoe program and some familiar with us. So as a guide and New Year’s Eve host, my dance card quickly filled up and only now, I can kick back and start my list. Perhaps, I shouldn’t call them resolutions but suggestions for the year to support you on your journey to finding vitality in your life.

In the area of Nutrition:

1. For two weeks every three months, adopt a mini-cleanse. Limit and if you can, eliminate, dairy, wheat/flour products, sugar (all forms), processed foods, caffeine, and alcohol. This supports the body’s own natural cleansing process and supports what we promote at MT, detoxing through dietary changes. Enjoy more veggies, fish like salmon, lean meats, and be generous in using good fats like flax oil or Udo’s Oil.

And speaking of Detox:

2. Brush your Body. Dry skin brushing is an easy way to help the skin eliminate toxins, drain and cleanse the lymphatic system, and help support the immune system. Gently sweep the brush in a circular motion, moving from the outer areas of the body (legs and hands) towards the heart. Try it three times a week for 5-10 minutes before your morning shower. Dry skin brushes are available at most drugstores or health food stores.

How about fitness?

3. Text yourself messages reminding you to work out.

And of course, we can’t forget, relaxation or destressing.

4. Breathe. That’s it. Take a moment each hour of each day to simply take a deep breath.