Little People, Big Eaters

How do we get our kids to love food and be healthy eaters for life?

That’s one of my personal missions and part of raising healthy, happy & hearty kids.

I recently spoke at Food Revolution Barrie about kids and nutrition. Here is the presentation I did. I’d love to hear what your biggest health issues are when it comes to kids.


Talk soon,

Whitney

Confused about Food Sensitivities? Here’s the Deal…

Food allergies vs. intolerances vs. sensitivities. What’s the difference and why does it matter?

The terms food sensitivities, intolerances and allergies are often confused or (incorrectly) used interchangeably. When Naturopathic Doctors are investigating digestive concerns, we use all three of these terms to determine what might be causing your symptoms and how to best to test for and treat them.

food-breakfast-egg-milk

Eggs, dairy, and wheat are three of the most common food sensitivities we see clinically!

Food Allergies
A true food allergy occurs when the immune system responds immediately to a particular food. Common food allergies include peanuts or shellfish. Symptoms can include hives, shortness of breath, or anaphylaxis and typically present within minutes after ingestion. Testing for immediate-type food allergies is typically unnecessary as it is usually readily apparent which food caused the problem. If testing is needed it is done via skin prick or blood testing. Food allergies usually need to be avoided life long, however some children do out grow them over time.

Food Sensitivities
Food sensitivities are also caused by an immune system reaction, but instead of an immediate reaction they cause delayed symptoms which can appear anywhere from hours to days after ingestion. These symptoms can include digestive complaints such as bloating and constipation, as well as non-digestive complaints such as headaches, fatigue, skin concerns, and joint pain. Identifying food sensitivities can be difficult due to the delayed nature of their symptoms. A supervised elimination type diet or specialized blood testing through your naturopathic doctor are the most effective ways to identify food sensitivities. Generally, food sensitivities are avoided or eliminated from the diet for several months and then gradually reintroduced following a gut-healing protocol.

Food Intolerances
Intolerances (unlike allergies and sensitivities) are NOT due to the immune system reacting to food. Instead, they are typically due to the body not being able to properly digest, absorb, or metabolize certain foods. The most common example of this is a lactose intolerance, in which the body does not produce the lactase enzyme. This stops the body from breaking down and digesting lactose or milk products and results in symptoms like bloating, flatulence, cramping, pain and diarrhea. You can reduce the uncomfortable symptoms of food intolerances by supplementing with the enzymes your body is lacking (for example: lactase pills) or avoiding the food all together.

The digestive system (or ‘the gut’ as we fondly refer to it as) is vital to overall health. As many of our patients can attest to, a poorly functioning gut can result in a variety of health concerns and chronic complaints down the line. 

If you’re frustrated with confusing food reactions, random symptoms, and can’t seem to identify what the problem is, it is important to have yourself properly assessed and tested by a qualified professional. You could have an allergy, sensitivity, intolerance, or any combination of the three!

Still have questions? Let us know, we’re here to help!

Dr. Katie

Turkey Chili with Barley

This time of year we all crave warm comfort foods. So here is a recipe that serves up yummy healthy comforting goodness.

We encourage our fertility patients, and those trying to stabilize blood sugars, to consume more plant based proteins like beans, peas and lentils. This recipe allows you do so with gusto. Delicious.

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Dinner tonight and leftovers to freeze

You will need:

  • 1 large onion, peeled and chopped
  • 1 pound of lean ground turkey
  • 1/4 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried cumin
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 2-4 cups chicken broth
  • 1 28-oz can diced tomatoes, juice drained
  • 1 cup salsa (spiciness to your taste)
  • 2 19-oz cans navy beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup pearled barley

Instructions:

  1. Using a large heavy pot over medium heat, sauté the onions in a 1 Tbsp of olive oil.
  2. Once onions are softened, add the turkey and cook until no longer pink, breaking up the chunks as you go.
  3. Add the chili powder, oregano, cumin, salt, pepper and cinnamon, cook for another minute.
  4. Add the first 2 cups of stock, tomatoes, salsa, beans and barley and bring to a simmer. If you need to, add more stock until everything is just covered in liquid. Reduce heat to maintain low simmer and cook for 60-70 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  5. Serve hot with your favorite chili side (we like rye bread to sop up the bottom of the bowl).

Enjoy!

Granola bar recipe – school safe and gluten free

I love granola bars but find them very hard to buy. If they are gluten free, they also tend to be nutrition free and school unfriendly.

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So here is a recipe that is fit for the season. Chewy pumpkin granola bars. As a bonus, maple syrup is the only sweetener in them 🙂

Ingredients

  • 1 3/4 cups gluten free rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
  • 1/4 cup hemp hearts
  • 1/4 cup chocolate chips (this could easily be more oats, raisins, more seeds…whatever works for you)
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp of ground cinnamon2015-10-17 11.39.49
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350.
  • Mix all the dry ingredients together in a medium mixing bowl.
  • Mix wet into a small mixing bowl another.
  • Combine wet and dry ingredients well so all the oats get coated.
  • Line a 11×8 baking pan with parchment paper (or whatever size you’d like really).  Use enough paper to hang over the sides so that you can pull them out when they are done.
  • Press them down firmly so they are flat.
  • Bake in the oven for about 20-25 minutes.  Let the bars cool completely before cutting.

Use a large sharp knife or pizza cutter to cut them into bars. Wrap in plastic wrap to freeze for easy and fast snacks.

Carrot Soup Recipe

carrot soup

One thing that I love about the cooler weather is soup. I am forever finding new recipes to use.

It’s such a delicious way to get all those servings of vegetables in and use up the abundance of carrots from my garden!!

Roasting vegetable changes their taste – to me, so much better. So I decided to try roasted carrot soup. I couldn’t be more pleased.

Ingredients:

  • 6 cups sliced carrots
  • olive oil, about 1-2 tbsp.
  • kosher salt, 1/2 tsp or so
  • 1 large Spanish onion, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger (I would like to use fresh next time, 2 Tbsp grated would do it)
  • 4 cups vegetable or chicken broth (I use low salt so that I can add just how much I want later)
  • pepper to taste

Directions:carrot soup 5

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit
  2. Toss sliced carrots in olive oil and spread on a cookie sheet, sprinkle liberally with kosher salt; roast for 30-40 minutes, until they begin to brown On the stove top, in a medium to large soup pot, melt 1 Tbsp butter over med/high heat (you could easily use olive oil or coconut oil here); add the sliced onions and cook until they begin to brown; add the ginger and broth; bring to a boil
  3. Once the carrots are done, carefully add the carrots to the broth and onions
  4. Once it’s cool enough (just not boiling hot, warm is still good), blend using and immersion blender or in batches

I love it just like this with a bit of pepper. You could add cream to make it a creamy soup or add a dollop of sour cream when you serve it.

Enjoy eating your veggies 🙂

Dr. Kerri

Veggie Soup with Chicken Broth

I’m pretty proud of this soup! It really is a homemade soup. The veggies came from my neighbours freezer but really came from his abundant garden last summer. I used some chicken bone broth I made in a slow cooker overnight after a delicious roast chicken dinner one Sunday night awhile ago.

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Ingredients:

4-6 cups of chicken bone broth

4 cups of frozen veggies – I had grape tomatoes, zucchini and green beans.

Sprinkle of thyme and oregano

Add salt and pepper to taste.

Bring to a boil then simmer 20 minutes.

Enjoy!

Dr. Whitney Young, ND & Dr. Kerri Fullerton, ND