Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Quail Cove Farms (Co-op)

An acquaintance of mine recently shared some great news with me! - There is another co-op, Quail Cove Farms (QCF), in the Hampton Roads area, this one on the Eastern Shore. QCF makes deliveries once a month to locations up and down the East Coast, from Maryland to North Carolina. Many of their prices are extremely competitive. You can purchase products (produce, grocery, perishable, frozen) in bulk and save. And the quality of the products, particularly the produce, butter and free-range turkey, chicken and eggs, is top-notch!

I am currently working on a spreadsheet showing the price comparison of a variety of Maker's diet-friendly items through QCF and the Organic Food Depot, among other stores. I will post this in a few days.

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Thursday, July 19, 2007

Fasting: Make it a Regular Habit

When I first started eating according to the The Maker’s Diet I followed it to the letter, beginning at phase 1, fasting on the fourth day, and progressing to phases 2 and then 3. But over the past couple of years I have not fasted once as Jordan Rubin recommends. According to Rubin’s research, fasting has aided and even cured those with severe illnesses. I was reminded recently of the importance of giving the digestive system a “day of rest.”

Rubin recommends a “partial fast” in his book, which includes abstaining from eating or drinking anything except water, small amounts of home-squeezed organic vegetable juice (not fruit), or kombucha (or other lacto-fermented beverage) for one whole day, except for a small, easily digestible meal in the early evening. That small evening meal can include any few of the following in minimal portions: meat, poultry, fish, raw cheese (only raw or cultured dairy products – no sugar), eggs, vegetables, fruit (no fruit juice), sprouted or soaked breads or grains, lacto-fermented beans or lentils, etc.

The point is to relieve the hard-working intestinal tract, and give it a day off. During this day of fasting, Rubin recommends taking 2-3 doses of Garden of Life’s Super Seed Fiber Powder (available at Vitamin Shop and OFD). This special fiber powder is unlike anything else on the market. It is predigested through a sprouting process, making it easy for the body to break down. I do not recommend taking any other fiber powder but Super Seed while fasting. Commercial fiber powders, pills, capsules, etc. are not predigested and put undue strain on the intestines, so it is best to avoid them completely.

This past week I decided to re-implement a weekly day of partial fasting as Rubin suggests. I did this particularly because, despite my healthy eating, I have been feeling bloated, excessively hungry, and digestively uncomfortable at times. I chose Sunday as my fasting day, particularly because as a natural break in my routine, I figured it would be easier to go without food on a day when I am resting anyway.

As a result, the very next day, I found that my appetite had decreased back to what it should be (in essence my stomach had shrunk a bit), I was no longer bloated, I no longer craved certain foods (even natural sweetners), and my digestive system became more regular. Overall, I feel fantastic!

I highly recommend that even if you are a healthy eater that you consider doing a weekly day of at least partial fasting. I can’t believe it has taken me so long to implement this as a part of my regular routine. Try it. You’ll be surprised how much good it will do you!

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Trillium Organics Links to My Blog!

Many of you probably read my recent post that provided a link to Trilium Organics' webpage on which my feedback about their products is posted in the form of a customer quote. I emailed them and asked if they could link my name to my Organic Fanatic blog page. They did! Check it out:

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Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Perdue Chicken

I was recently asked about the safetly and authenticity concerning supposedly "all-natural" Perdue chicken. Since I myself did not know the answer, I looked into the issue.

According to Perdue's website, they do not inject their chickens with hormones or antibiotics, and according the packaging label, they do not use artificial preservatives or additives either.

Their chickens are fed corn, soybeans, grains and vitamins and minerals. These chickens are not free-range, but are bred and grown at large farms contracted with Perdue. We can assume from the fact that the poultry is not injected with antibiotics that their living environments and food are relatively clean and safe. However, this does not mean that they are necessarily raised in open barns or farm yards.

According to Jordan Rubin in The Maker's Diet and Sally Fallon in Nourishing Traditions, the best poultry options are always either certified organic or (especially) free-range chicken. The diet of free-range chicken produces additional vitamins and nutrients not found in barn-raised chickens fed solely on corn, soy and grains, even if they are organic. Therefore free-range poultry is always the most beneficial, as are free-range eggs.

However, if your budget does not allow you to purchase free-range poultry, Perdue is at least a better option than other commercially-raised chicken.

In addition, Harris Teeter now offers bags of frozen organic chicken breasts (5 pk.) in their freezer section for $12.99, a very reasonable price for organic chicken. Harris Teeter also carries organic free-range whole chickens in their meat/poultry cooler section.

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Friday, July 13, 2007

Duck and Quail at Harris Teeter

Just today I saw that Harris Teeter has added two items to their frozen section: duck breast fillets and preseasoned quail. The duck breasts come from a group of Amish Farms. The preseasoned quail has not hormones or antibiotics, but the preseasoning isn't organic. However, it might be a fun change to try them. They both look delicious.

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My Comment Got Posted on Trillium!

Trillium Organics, the organic skin and body care company I have so highly recommended, has revamped their website this month. In fact, my feedback in response to their Oil-Free Face Polish has been posted on their website! Check it out:

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Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Kerrygold Butter

As many of you may have already read in my blog, I have been planning to experiment with making my own butter. However, after more than a month I have had not gotten around to it. This past week I finally decided to scout around for a high-quality, cultured butter from pasture-fed cows.

I discovered a brand that I am now in love with: Kerrygold. Kerrygold is an Irish company that produces high-quality butter and cheese. The milk that Kerrygold uses to produce their products comes from a number of small farmers scattered all over Ireland. The cows are pasture-fed and are never given hormones or antibiotics. The butter contains no artificial ingredients or preservatives and is made from cultured pasturized cream. (I was glad to see that the cream, though pasturized, is at least cultured.) It is a deep, rich golden color, characteristic of pasture-fed cow's milk butter. And it is delicious! I have never beofre seen butter this yellow, or tasted butter this good.

I have yet to try their cheeses, but I will do that next!

For those of you local to Hampton Roads, you can purchase Kerrygold products through the Organic Food Depot. Enjoy!

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Harris Teeter: Frozen Meats

Thanks to my husband's keen eye, I recently discovered that Harris Teeter is now carrying bags of organic chicken breasts (5 pk.) in the freezer section for $12.99. In addition, they have frozen ground bison (natural: no antibiotics, no hormones, vegetarian fed) for $5.99 lb, frozen organic beef hot dogs for $4.99, frozen organic hamburger patties (didn't catch the price), and packages of two frozen Purdue game hens (no antibiotics, hormones or artificial ingredients/preservatives) for $7.99, I believe.

This is just one more option when searching for healthy meats.

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Thursday, July 5, 2007

Beef, Elk, Duck, Goose, and Game Hen at Central Meats

I discovered this past weekend that in addition to their standard beef and chicken, Central Meats also carries all natural/free range buffalo (ground, steak, burger patties, etc.) and all natural/pasture-fed elk burger patties as well. These are available in their frozen section.

In addition, they also carry frozen duck, goose and game hen. However, these are commercial, I believe.

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