Garlic for Your Health and for Your Taste Buds

Mail AttachmentBy Nancy Smorch, Foodie Bitch

I’m assuming I don’t need to tell you all of the health benefits of garlic (but in case you don’t know, click here).  As the weather starts to change  and get a little cooler, garlic is a great immune system booster – keep it on hand and make sure to cook with it…A LOT!

This is a picture of some of the garlic we grew in our garden this year.  It was my first time growing garlic – I had never thought to grow it before, and when I finally wanted to grow it, I realized I needed to plan ahead and plant in the Fall.

So, last Fall, I finally planned ahead.  I ordered garlic from Seeds of Change.  If you haven’t checked out their website, it’s a great resource for buying organic seeds and some seedlings, as well as a ton of articles and videos to learn about organic gardening, seed saving, food storage, and more.

I was so excited to harvest garlic from our own garden.  I’ve been cooking with it all Summer and wishing I would have planted more so I would have it through the Winter.  This Fall I will plan even better, and plant more for next year.

If you would also like to plan ahead, check out Seeds of Change’s website here.  Now is the time to order your garlic and plant it for next year’s harvest.  Don’t miss out!!

Healthy Lunch Ideas

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By Nancy Smorch, Foodie Bitch

Last week I had my follow-up call with the nutritionist/kinesiologist.

There were a few areas that needed attention, and a few foods I unfortunately need to avoid for a while (hopefully not forever!) to see how eliminating them affects my body.  There were also a couple of supplements she recommended adding to help bring things back into balance.

She noticed that my lunches were the least consistent meal of the day in terms of quantity and proper nutrients, and she’s right. Usually I’m running around or diving into a project around lunch, and so I tend to get distracted from eating properly during that busy time. She recommended I focus on making sure I increased the quality of my lunches.

She gave me a few ideas on how to do this, which seem simple enough.

One suggestion was just to munch some salami with gluten free crackers and butter, which surprised me. I haven’t had salami since I was a kid.  I tend to steer away from salami because I didn’t quite know what was in it.

She, however, recommended Applegate Organic Genoa Salami (gluten and dairy free), which our local health food store happened to carry, so I picked some up.


She also recommended Organic Valley’s Pasture Butter, which I already had – it’s only available seasonally, at the height of pasture season, and thus has a higher level of vitamins and healthy fats.


The next day when lunch came around, I was distracted with something, as usual, but I made sure I made time for lunch. It was really easy to prepare.

As you can see from the picture, I just took a few slices of the salami, some gluten-free crackers, butter (I am supposed to eat at least 3 Tbsp. organic butter a day – no problem with that one!), and then I cut up a couple of cucumbers and tomatoes from our garden (which were sooo good).

Surprisingly, it filled me up, and gave me plenty of energy for the rest of the afternoon.  I’m loving this new lunch and so is my husband and one of our daughters (the other is a vegetarian), so I thought I’d share the idea with you in case you come upon those days when lunch comes around and your mind goes blank.  It’s easy, quick, healthy, delicious, and satisfying!

Mind Over Medicine – Just as Important to your Health as the Right Foods



By Nancy Smorch, Foodie Bitch

I was sharing with you that last week was Health Week for the Foodie Bitch – I decided to focus on taking care of myself to make sure I was feeling the best I could.  Well, despite all of the extra nurturing, I wound up sick!

I haven’t been sick in quite some time. I’m looking over what I did this past week to figure out what may have gone wrong (I tend to over-analyze things… this could be part of my problem).

I realized that even though I was eating great, exercising, sleeping well, and getting plenty to drink, my mind and thoughts weren’t quite where they needed to be.

This connection shouldn’t have come as a surprise to me.  After all (have I ever mentioned?) I do a lot of alternative healing -B.E.S.T., or Bio-energetic Synchronization Technique especially, which is a way of removing the conscious and sub-conscious interference from your life and taking you out of “fight or flight” mode so your body can heal. I also do some other energy work, and a lot of stuff with essential oils.

In all of my studies for alternative healing, it’s evident that even if you eat right, get good sleep, get plenty of fresh air and water, and exercise… if your thoughts are not supporting you, and you are putting yourself in a fight or flight state (stress), your body will become weak and open to infection, degeneration, and disease.

Today’s stressors are everywhere – we really can’t avoid them.  But we can deal with them more effectively to ensure that we don’t get stuck in this mode.  Our beliefs about who we are, what we are capable of, what the world is like, and our place in the world (among many other beliefs) play a huge role in our health.

I strongly believe we must pay very close attention to how we are talking to ourselves, as well as become aware of the limiting beliefs we hold about ourselves, to be fully healthy.

I think another important aspect of our emotional health is to remember that life can be (and should be) fun!  I think too often we tend to take thing too seriously, and as the old saying goes, there’s no need to make mountains out of mole hills.

I think also, especially for me, I spend a lot of time in my head.  I can be a very analytical person and I love to solve puzzles and try to figure out why things happen the way they do.  While this definitely serves me,  too much time in my head and not enough time actually living can get me in trouble.

And I think that’s the stress that took me down this week.

So, recognizing this, I pulled out one of my books I recently purchased, “Mind OBver Medicine,” by Lissa Rankin, M.D.

I had scanned through it a bit before, but last night I was trying to go to bed in a better “state”, so I pulled it out and started reading it.

Turns out the forward was written by Kris Carr – the author of “Crazy Sexy Kitchen,” which one of my followers had recommended (thank you michaelawanders!).  Just reading those first few pages reminded me that I need to initiate some stress-relieving activities in my life on a more consistent basis.

Here are some ideas from Lissa’s book for decreasing the stress in our lives and turning on the body’s healing capacity:


Playing games




Being with animals

Taking walks

Allowing yourself to express your creativity (whether through cooking, art, dance, sports, architecture, writing….)


Taking a bath

Getting a massage

Enjoying nature

There were many other options to consider. Obviously Lissa delves much deeper into this subject in her book, and it’s a great read – check it out, or visit her blog here to learn more!

All of these easy, simple options will calm your body into a state of rest and self-repair – the best medicine!

So, today, as soon as I’m done writing this post, I am going to go sit outside on this perfect day (sunny and 80 degrees), among our purple butterfly bushes and Russian sage, and write down 5 activities that would help me elicit this healing response in my body.  But I won’t stop there.

Then, I will actually go and do one of them.

Would you like to join me?  What are 5 activities that you could do that would nourish and nurture your Soul and help your body heal?