Sunday, August 19, 2012

Healthy Living

Most people these days are trying to live healthy: exercise, eating right, etc.  Well, I am no different.  I have definitely jumped on the bandwagon.  Truthfully, I really started taking this 'healthy thing' more seriously when I was told by my Orthopedic that I needed a knee replacement - a result from running and playing tennis.  Before he does the surgery I was given instructions to get healthy (translation - loose some weight) so that the surgery and recovery would be quicker and easier.  

So here I am with a trainer 3 days a week and walking three miles on the off days (also, a couple of days of yoga thrown in the mix).  My biggest challenge is sleep - everything you read says to get anywhere from 6 to 8 hours of sleep (this apparently aids in weight-loss).  My normal amount of sleep is 4 or 5 hours.  Oh well, something to work towards.

My eating habits were the easiest to change and the most fun.  I love trying new recipes and gadgets.  I am buying less and less processed food (for obvious reasons); and making my own veggie dips, yogurt, pasta, tortillas and bread.  Making my own bread is something I have done for years.  I have a wheat grinder and am able to make my own unprocessed flour.  Then there is the obvious buying of fresh fruits and vegetable.  And this may sound silly, but I grind my own ground beef.  This is a result of the 'pink slime' reports on the news. (I know the stores have said they are no longer using this in their ground meat.  I just can't bring myself to eat it.)  So, I grind my own and it makes me feel much better.  It all sounds like a lot of work but, I am able to control what goes in my food.  

This brings me to the next few blog posts of 'Making Your Own'.  The first 'Make Your Own' is yogurt and a simple recipe.

In making my yogurt I use three things: raw milk (I buy this from a local farm.  Look on the internet for a farm near you) or organic milk, a yogurt maker (I have a YoLife Electronic Yogurt Maker), and yogurt starter (I use YoLife Yogurt Starter).  (purchased the yogurt maker and starter from Bread Beakers.  The website, if you don't live in Atlanta, GA., is www.breadbeckers.com)







There is not much for me to tell when you make the yogurt except to just follow the directions the are provided in the yogurt maker.


yogurt parfait

Suggested recipes for your homemade yogurt: stir in fresh fruit or flavored agave syrups.  And for a great dessert .                                                                                                                                                         

1. take your homemade yogurt and place about 1/2 
    the yogurt in a serving glass
2. layer with fresh fruit of choice (I used strawberries 
    and blueberries
3. another layer of yogurt
4. top with homemade granola (recipe below)




Granola Recipe
Ingredients:
  4 cups rolled oats
  2 cups shredded coconut
  1 stick butter
  1/2 cup honey

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

1. In a bowl mix together oats and shredded coconut.  Set
    aside.
2. In a microwave safe bowl - melt together butter and
    honey.  Pour into the oat coconut mixture and stir well
    to coat. 
3. Spread mixture on a cookie sheet and bake for
    10 minutes.  Stir and bake 5 more minutes. 
4. Remove from oven and cool. 
5. After the mixture has cooled place in a bowl and mix
    in: nuts, dried fruit - cherries, apricots, cranberries,
    raisins.    (I added golden raisins and chopped 
    macadamia nuts)
6. Seal in an air tight container.
Use as: cereal, a topping, or just a snack. 

 






  


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