1. What kind of food do you think our kids should eating every day? How can parents make this happen with little time, money, and skills?
Lots of fresh fruits and veggies, whole grains, lean proteins and healthy fats. It’s not as tough as it sounds; you can whip up a meal or snack in a matter of minutes for a minimal amount of money using a bit of creativity. Try making a large batch of quinoa and brown rice on Sunday nights to serve throughout the week in your breakfast porridge, lunchtime salad, diner burrito and rice pudding dessert. Cook up a few cups of white beans to make a spinach white bean dip to serve with crudités for the kids after school snacks, blend the beans into your tomato sauce for a hearty dose of fiber and protein with your pasta. Make fancy twice baked sweet potatoes by stuffing them with a mixture of purred white beans, canned pumpkin and sweet potato flesh. Then you can use any leftovers as a spread on your sandwich instead of using mayonnaise. White beans also make a great add-in for guacamole and salsa recipes- you can toss them in for a chunky consistency to serve with crackers, cucumbers or jicama. See how easy it can be? It just takes a little planning- and that’s what I do with all of my clients- help make their lives easier with real, “Clean” food.
2. What are a few of your favorite go to recipes for every day?
All the recipes on my website, TheHealthyApple.com are 100% gluten-free, 99% dairy-free (with Greek yogurt used occasionally because for some folks like myself you are lactose intolerant can digest Greek yogurt because of the way it’s strained. Therefore, I do use Greek yogurt in a few of my recipes. Other than that The Healthy Apple is 90% vegetarian and vegan so it’s a one-stop shop for recipes n’ tips for anyone with food allergies, intolerances and other food lifestyle choices. My favorite recipes are:
Gluten-Free Pine Nut Stuffed Mushrooms: http://thehealthyapple.com/2012/05/18/gluten-free-vegan-pine-nutstuffed-mushrooms/
Crispy Quinoa Bites: http://thehealthyapple.com/2012/05/21/crispy-quinoa-bites/
Grilled Cherry Guacamole: http://thehealthyapple.com/2012/08/06/grilled-cherry-guacamole/
Asparagus n’ Raspberry Black Rice Salad: http://thehealthyapple.com/2012/07/06/asparagus-raspberry-black-rice-salad/
Goat Cheese n’ Asparagus Gluten-Free Pasta Salad: http://thehealthyapple.com/2012/07/02/4th-of-july-picnic-menu/
Gluten-Free Fiesta Pasta Salad: http://thehealthyapple.com/2012/07/23/gluten-free-vegan-fiesta-pasta-salad/
Quinoa Spinach Bake: http://thehealthyapple.com/2012/06/11/quinoa-spinach-bake/
3. What kitchen tools do you think every home cook should have?
A mandolin slicer to make your veggies look pretty, a zester to add lemon, lime, orange and grapefruit zest to any dish and a good knife for cutting meats, fish, veggies, fruits and fresh herbs.
4. What are some tips you can share for busy parents trying to feed their families the healthiest food they can?
Cook up a large batch of grains, beans and a lean protein on Sunday night- as I mentioned above. This will give you side dishes for the entire week along with the main course. I roast a turkey every Sunday night and use it throughout the week in soups, tacos, wraps, salads, etc. The grains and beans can also be used as a main course in soups, tacos, wraps and salads or added as a side dish with Greek yogurt, salsa and avocado.
5. What challenges do you find to healthy eating and how do you work through those?
I love a challenge. I carry food with me when I travel on airplanes, to weddings, to dinner parties, etc. because if I am stuck with only a rest-stop or vending machine in sight- I’m not a happy camper. I pack lots of avocado, hard-boiled eggs, veggies, hummus, nuts and seeds whether I am out running errands or on a vacation.
6. I see that you are writing a book! Please tell us more.
Thank you! I am so excited to be writing my book with healthy, “Clean” recipes as well as tips for those who suffer from an ailment that makes them feel unlike everyone else. My passion for and approach to ‘Clean Eating’ focuses on whole foods and ingredients that are good for you and your body. Through The Healthy Apple, I share balanced, accessible and engaging information on the most basic components of good health. I struggled with chronic leg swelling, stomach problems and colitis; even venturing out to Mayo Clinic in 2010 to hear there was nothing wrong with me. After spending several years dealing with severe digestive issues, while pursuing a career in marketing and advertising, my health continued to deteriorate. I decided to take my health into my own hands and seek alternative options.
It wasn’t until I began working with an Integrative Medical Doctor that I learned she was suffering from heavy metal accumulation and was born without the gene to absorb folate, key in detoxification. This made me realize that medicine can only do so much – it wasn’t offering my body what it needed to heal. Using acupuncture, yoga, meditation, herbal medicine, and fresh, whole, unprocessed foods, I healed myself and remain 100% symptom free nearly five years later.
To this day I am still unable to digest gluten, grains, some dairy, sugar and oils. The past few years I have also discovered I am allergic to sulfates and cannot digest packaged foods, therefore I follow a Clean lifestyle filled with lean proteins, health fats and lots of veggies. So, in a nut shell- I’m out to tell the world that it’s okay if you have stomach issues or food allergies or intolerances and there is nothing to be ashamed of or embarrassed about. I’m lucky to be alive today with all I have been through- and I’m out to help others who face the challenges and pain I once faced. I’m here to give them hope and tell them not to give up.
Thanks to Amie for this helpful interview and for inspiring us to eat a more wholesome, healthy diet! I look forward to trying the recipes listed above and following her tips. Readers, do you have a question for Amie?