Have you ever noticed how little attention we give our lungs? More often than not, the only time we even acknowledge our lungs is when there is something wrong with them. Let’s be honest, there is a lot of stuff that we have to deal with on a daily basis. As such, things that require little to no investment (mentally) on our part tend to run on autopilot. Unfortunately, with the drop in temperature, our lungs become more at risk.
With everything our lungs deal with, it is imperative that we do what we can when we can to support our lung health. There are so many issues that our lungs are at risk for, most commonly we are at risk for asthma, inflammation, infection, fluid build-up, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and even cancer. In 2018, there were 16.6 million COPD cases. COPD is actually the third leading cause of death. Thanks to COVID, we all have a better understanding of just how important our lung health is. Unfortunately, most of us don’t know how to support our lung health. Not to mention what we are all doing that can damage our lungs.
For example, we all know just how damaging smoking is to our lungs. Things like smog and environmental toxins are also no-brainers. But I will bet you didn’t know that there are foods we eat and drink that can wreak havoc on our lungs. Take milk products, for example, which can increase phlegm production. This is why you should avoid dairy when dealing with a cold, flu, or infection. It is also important to monitor inflammatory foods which can cause irritation to your lung tissue as well as every cell within your body. Alcohol is another damaging product that dehydrates cells and tissues which prevents them from properly functioning. Other foods to try to avoid are salty foods, processed meats, soda, and fried foods.
Eat Your Way to Better Health
The good news is that there are foods that can help improve our lung health. Healthy fats like avocadoes aid in lubricating the mucus lining of our lung tissues which aids in gas exchange. Lean proteins are critical for our body to repair any damaged tissues or cells. Berries are high in antioxidants which eliminate free radicals from our bodies that can damage and even kill cells. Not to mention, they are also great for anti-aging. Reach for dark leafy greens, fruits, and vegetables that are high in anti-inflammatory properties.
Inflammation is our body’s first response to dealing with an invading bacteria or virus. It is designed to slow traffic in areas where something may be wrong and increase the rate at which the white blood cells get to the source. Unfortunately, when we consume foods that naturally increase inflammation throughout our bodies we redirect our natural resources. As a by-product, we are unable to focus any energy or resources on repair or basic maintenance. Our bodies focus on what we consider to be a threat first prior to repair, detoxing, and improvements. However, our bodies rely on our ability to repair, detox, and improve themselves.
Listen to Your Body
Did you know our bodies, when healthy, rebuild themselves entirely every four years? When our bodies are constantly under attack our main focus is to just survive at that moment. Which is great for emergency moments. But if you never have time to rest and repair, your body breaks down and no one wants that. That’s why it is imperative to our health that we increase anti-inflammatory foods and detox regularly. The best part is detoxing doesn’t have to be anything crazy. One of the best ways to detox is with food and we all need to detox regularly. Detoxing should be done every three months at a minimum.
Hawaiian Banana Bread
Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Serves 30
- 2 cups coconut flour
- 1 cup almond flour
- 3/4 tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 2 cups coconut sugar
- 1 tsp cinnamon ground
- 3 eggs
- 1 cup chopped walnuts
- 2 cups mashed bananas
- 1 cup coconut oil raw
- 8 ounce can crushed pineapple drained
- 1 cup flaked coconut unsweetened
- 2 tsp pure vanilla
- 1 cup cherries pitted and diced
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Pretreat two 9×5 inch bread pans. Into a large bowl, combine the flour, salt, baking soda, sugar, and cinnamon. Add the eggs, oil, banana, pineapple, vanilla, coconut, and cherries. Stir until just blended and fold in the walnuts. Pour the batter into the pans. Bake for 60 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool in the pan for 10 minutes then remove to cool completely on a wire rack.
Chai Pear Scones
Gluten-Free, Vegan, Serves 8
- 2 cups coconut flour
- 3/4 cup almond flour
- 1 Tbsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 3/4 tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1 tsp ground ginger
- 1/4 tsp ground cardamom
- 1 medium pear, peeled, cored, and diced
- 1/2 cup vegan butter cold and cubbed
- 1 Tbsp pure vanilla
- 8 oz cold full fat coconut milk
- 1 Tbsp coconut cream
- 1 cup powdered coconut sugar
- 4 tbsp coconut cream
- 1 Tbsp ground cinnamon
Into a large bowl, whisk the flour, sugar, baking powder, soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cardamom together. Using a food processor pour the flour mixture and pulse the butter in. The mixture should look like crumbs. Gently fold in the pears. Whisk together vanilla and coconut milk. Slowly add into the flour mixture until the dough comes together. You may not need all of the milk. The dough should be moist but not wet, less mixing is better to prevent it from being tough. Transfer the dough to a floured service to knead four or five times. Pat into a circle and cut into eight triangle wedges and place onto a baking sheet 2-inch apart. Place into the freezer for 30 minutes. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F, brush the scones with coconut cream and bake until golden brown (about 15-20). Transfer to a wire rack to cool. To make glaze mix all ingredients in a bowl and drizzle over the scones.
Mint Chocolate Ice Cream
Gluten-free, Vegan, Serves 12
- 2 1/2 cup coconut cream
- 1 cup fresh mint leaves
- 3 1/2 oz dark chocolate melted
- 4 drops peppermint essential oil
- 3/4 cup condensed coconut milk
- 1/2 tsp pure vanilla
- 1 tsp spirulina
- 1/2 tsp flaky sea salt
Add the cream to a medium saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Simmer for 30 seconds and immediately remove from heat. Stir in the mint, cover, and steep for 15-20 minutes. Strain the cream into a bowl, making sure to press the leaves, and remove all the cream. Discard the leaves and transfer the cream into the fridge for 1 hour. Into a small bowl, combine melted chocolate and condensed milk. Mix until completely smooth and let cool. Using a mixer whip the cream into peaks for about 3-4 minutes. Add vanilla, peppermint, spirulina, and salt until combined. Remove half of the cream and transfer it into a 9×5 inch loaf pan. Fold in the chocolate mixture with the remaining half of the cream. Once mixed spoon into the pan and swirl the two together before covering and freezing for at least 6 hours.
Orzo Stuffed Bell Peppers
Gluten-Free, Vegan, Serves 4
- 3 bell peppers halved
- 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 cup gluten-free orzo
- 4 sprigs fresh oregano
- 2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1/2 cup pitted kalamata olives
- 2 Tbsp pine nuts chopped
- 1/2 cup vegan feta cheese crumbled
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 cup fresh basil chopped
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes halved
- zest 1 lemon
- salt and pepper to taste
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. In a 9×13 inch baking dish, toss the peppers with oil, garlic, oregano, salt, and pepper to taste. Transfer to the oven and roast for 20-25 minutes or until peppers start to char. Meanwhile, cook the orzo as directed on the box until al dente. Drain and toss with balsamic, olives, nuts, and feta. To prepare salad combine all ingredients into a bowl and toss. Stuff the warm orzo into the peppers and top with tomato salad.
Get Started Today
Keeping your body free of toxins and free radicals is necessary to maintain a healthy life and a healthy mind. There are tons of foods you can add to your regular diet to help your body with its critical detoxifying processes. If you are looking for a safe and all-natural way to detox your body at home be sure to check out my Balancing Abundance Program. Because detoxing is so important and realistically everyone should be doing it on at least a seasonal basis I have taken the time to put together a program to help you do just that. Here’s the thing, I know working with me one-on-one can seem difficult to get into (due to limited space) and I wanted to be able to give everyone an additional solution that has no limits. You deserve to be happy, healthy, and successful at everything you do so here are some recipes to help set you up for success!
Need A Hand?
A happy and healthy life is closer than you may think. We all have to deal with our health daily, and when we don’t feel our best, it shows. If you are tired of just making it through your day, you NEED to start investing in your health today! You are not alone on this journey. If you ever need any help, I am always here to do just that. Even if it is something as small as acting as a sounding board, do you have any questions or concerns I can help you with? Feel free to contact me directly at [email protected], or you can even book a one-on-one call with me. Be sure to subscribe to gain access to tons of free goodies and check back daily for more great recipes and information!