What Diet is Best for You or Your Client?
By Mary Sheila Gonnella
With so many diets out there that all make a specific claim, the one thing they all have in common is that they create a change from what the body is used to. That change, has the potential to “reset” what is going on the body, give digestion a “rest” from specific foods that could be causing distress, and ultimately shift symptoms in a positive way.
Another thing about diets though, is that they are not always meant to be on forever. With that in mind, sticking to something for a while, then going off of it, should not be seen as a failure, but rather, seen as your body’s innate knowing and need for variety. The body has different needs at different times, depending on what elements that are out of balance in the body, seasonal needs, and what foods are available to us.
Supporting ourselves or clients who have shifted to a specific diet, be it vegan, raw, ketogenic, paleo, paleo autoimmune, or simply eating for our constitution, can help to shift not only the metabolism, but also the micro-biome and vitamin and mineral status in the body. When a restrictive diet is followed for health or idealogical reasons, over time, we might not be meeting all our our nutritional needs and start to experience symptoms based on these deficiencies. They can show up in many ways in the body. Learning how to identify deficiencies can be vital to using food as medicine and Ayurvedic principles for healing. Join us for a weekend of Ayurvedic Whole Food Nutrition as we dive into concepts like this, and use elemental science to find deficiencies and address them through food as medicine.
Topics for the Ayurvedic Whole Food nutrition June weekend will be:
- Fat Soluble vitamins
- Soaking and Sprouting
- Understanding inflammation and Cooling it in the body
- The role of fermentation and how to make ferments
- Amino Acid Therapy
- How to address imbalanced food cravings
- The Gut Brain Connection and the Micro – biome
In the meantime, try this nourishing, satisfying broth that can become the base of so many meals.
Pho for Breakfast Lunch or Dinner
Recipe adapted from Steamy Kitchen and Ceres Community Project
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 1.5 hours (if using a pressure cooker)
- Pressure cooker (or stovetop pot with lid or crock pot)
- Measuring spoons/cups
- 2 lbs. chicken bones or parts (backs, necks and feet)
- 1 piece dried seaweed (Kombu or Wakame)
- 2 tbsp. ghee
- 1 yellow onion, peeled and chopped
- 1⁄2 inch piece of ginger, sliced
- 3 tbsp. tamari (GF soy sauce); can also use fish sauce
- 2 tbsp. Coriander seeds
- 1 cardamom pod
- 3 whole cloves
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 tsp. peppercorns
Ingredients for breakfast bowl:
- 1 cup wild rice (soaked overnight in 3 cups water and 1 tablespoon lemon
juice or apple cider vinegar)
- 1 egg per person
- 1 bunch red Russian kale
Additional mineral rich immune boosting ingredients you can add:
- Astragalus root – 1 ounce (2-3 slices)
- Codonopsis Root – 1 ounce (1/4 cup)
- Dried Reishi – 1/2 ounce (small handful)
- Take 5 minutes to get out all your ingredients, measuring and cooking
equipment needed, and place them on a cookie sheet within easy reach.
- Chop onion and ginger.
- If you do not have ghee, you can make ghee by melting unsalted butter over
low heat in a pot until it is bubbling. Scoop off and discard the foamy milk
solids at the top of the butter, with a spoon. Be careful to leave behind the
milky liquid at the bottom of the saucepan—the oily part of the butter is ghee. It
can be stored in a glass container.
Note: whether you are using a regular stovetop pot or pressure cooker, you will build
the flavors in stages to begin with:
- Pre-heat your pot over medium low heat. Add the spices – coriander,
cardamom, cloves, cinnamon, and peppercorns to the warmed pot, and let
them toast for just a minute or two. Once you start to smell their aroma,
remove them from the pot and save.
- Add a tablespoon of ghee to your pot along with the chopped onion and
ginger and cook until the onion has browned; then remove from the pot and
- Add the remaining ghee to the pot, along with the chicken backs, necks and
feet in a single layer to brown the chicken (do this in batches as to not over
crowd the pot and steam vs. brown). Brown them on each side for 3-5 minutes.
- Once the meat is all browned, add the spices and cooked onion and ginger
back into the pot, plus any additional veggies or herbs and spices you are
using. Cover with water (approximately 10 cups of water).
- If using a pressure cooker, once your pot gets to pressure, set a timer for 1
hour. After one hour, turn it off, but let it slowly cool, you do not need to
release the pressure, let it cool naturally. If not using a pressure cooker, once
you get the broth to a boil on the stove – let it simmer for 2.5 hours on the
stove – 4-5 hours in a crock pot.
- Once cool – strain the stock, so you are just left with the broth. At this point,
taste it, the seaweed has most likely added a bit of a salty flavor. You can add
the fish sauce (traditional) or tamari or salt at this point. If you plan on using
this stock (or at least some of it) as a base for grains, beans and soups, you can
hold off on adding the salt and season the final product that you will make with