Tag Archives: olive oil

Discover The Deliciousness of Mexican Turnip: Jicama Fries Recipe

Jicama (Pachyrhizus erosus, P. tuberosus), pronounced HEE-ka-ma, is native to Central America, where it is also known as Yam Bean or Mexican Turnip.  The genus name, Pachyrhizus is derived from the Greek and means “thick root.” The species names erosus means “jagged” and tuberosus, means “tuber.” Our name, jicama, comes from the Nahuatlan Indian xicama, which means “edible storage root.”

 Jicama is a member of the Fabaceae (Pea)  Family, making it a relative of peanuts and beans. The jicama plant is a vine growing to a length of twenty or more feet. The roots can weigh up to fifty pounds, though those on the market weigh between three to five pounds.

Jicama, a root vegetable, has a  high water and low calorie content. According to The Nutrition Almanac by Gayla and John Kirschmann, it  is high beta-carotene, B complex, vitamin C, calcium, iron, and potassium. Its sweet flavour comes from the fructo-oligosaccharide also known as inulin. Jicama’s flavor is sweet, similar to water chestnut and many restaurants use it as a less expensive substitute.

 Select firm jicama that is heavy for its size. Overly large, or shriveled jicama is likely to be woody and tough. Jicama can be stored whole, unwrapped in the refrigerator for several weeks. Storing it in plastic accelerates mold growth. Once cut, it is best to use it within a day or two.

 Slice jicama like potato chips and use it for dips. Jicama can be juiced, grated into a salad, or grated to the size of rice and use it as a rice replacement. In Latin America, it is common to serve peeled jicama, with a squeeze of lemon or lime and a dash of salt.

 Jicama Crunch Sticks

  • With a platter of these in hand, you’ll never miss French fries!
  • 1 jicama, peeled and cut into thin strips
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast (optional; not a raw product)
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder of your choice
  • 1/2 teaspoon Celtic salt
  • Toss together all ingredients.

Makes 2 servings.

What have you discovered about jicama?

Brigitte Mars, a professional member of the American Herbalist Guild, is a nutritional consultant who has been working with Natural Medicine for over forty years. She teaches Herbal Medicine at Naropa University, Hollyhock Retreat Center, Boulder College of Massage, and Bauman Holistic College of Nutrition and has a private practice. Brigitte is the author of twelve books, including The Sexual Herbal, The Desktop Guide to Herbal Medicine, Beauty by Nature, Addiction Free Naturally, Healing Herbal Teas, and Rawsome!. Click here for more healthy living articles, raw food recipes, videos, workshops, books, and more at brigittemars.com.

Check out her international model yogini daughter, Rainbeau at www.rainbeaumars.com

Why You Need To Start Eating Kale (And One Fabulous Kale Salad Recipe)

In the color spectrum, green is at the center of the rainbow, representing balance, healing, emotional stability, love, peace and rejuvenation.  Green foods are power packed with nutrients, energizing, detoxifying, rebuilding and immune strengthening. As greens grow, they provide oxygen for people and the planet. Green foods are rich in chlorophyll, a potent collector of solar energy.

 One supergreen is kale (Brassica oleracea), a member of the Brassicaceae (Cruciferous) Family, making it a relative of broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower. Native to Asia Minor, it is considered the closest relative to wild cabbage. The species name, oleracea means "a garden herb used in cooking."

Kale and collards are very similar, but kale often has curly leaves, and where collards thrive in a warmer climates, kale survives in a cooler one. Flowering kale is edible, but not as tender as other varieties (There are no poisonous members of the Brassicaceae Family!).

Kale benefits the stomach and helps relieve lung congestion. It has been used to treat constipation, obesity, dental problems, pyorrhea, arthritis, gout, skin disorders, ulcers and to rejuvenate the liver. All members of this family contain antioxidant indoles, which protect against colon, breast and lung cancer. Kale also has antiseptic properties.

Kale is considered warming, sweet with a slightly bitter-pungent flavor, similar to cabbage. Kale is rich in calcium, iron, potassium, sulfur, beta-carotene, vitamin C, and folic acid. One cup of kale has more calcium than one cup of milk. Many greens are high in oxalic acid, a chemical that can bind with calcium, forming calcium oxalate, which if consumed excessively can inhibit calcium absorption. However, kale is low in oxalic acid.

Select tender, dark green, or even bluish-green leaves, avoiding those that are yellowed.  You can cut off the bottoms and large middle ribs, as they are quite fibrous. Kale can be added to vegetable juices, chopped fine and added to salads as well as steamed, stir fried or made into soup. Some may find that kale is cleansing. The addition of a bit of ginger, cumin or caraway can ease it’s digestability.

Kale is easy to grow, tolerates cold weather and is quick to harvest. They are best when young and tender. According to traditional folklore, eating greens promotes prosperity. Now will you eat your greens?

 Kale Salad

(Ready in a minute!)

  • 1 bunch kale, washed and chopped fine
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon Celtic salt
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder (optional)

Toss everything. Then “massage” the seasonings into the kale.  (Serves 2-4)

For a complete meal, add an avocado, tomato or a few nuts or olives. You’ve got lunch!

Brigitte Mars, a professional member of the American Herbalist Guild, is a nutritional consultant who has been working with Natural Medicine for over forty years. She teaches Herbal Medicine at Naropa University, Omega, Boulder College of Massage, and Bauman Holistic College of Nutrition and has a private practice. Brigitte is the author of twelve books, including The Desktop Guide to Herbal Medicine, Beauty by Nature, Addiction Free Naturally, Healing Herbal Teas, and Rawsome!. Click here for more healthy living articles, raw food recipes, videos, workshops, books, and more at brigittemars.com.

Check out her international model yogini daughter, Rainbeau at www.rainbeaumars.com

PHOTO: Flickr / Laurel Fan

 

DIY Beauty: 9 Ways to Use Olive Oil For Your Body and Face

The Greek poet Homer called olive oil "liquid gold"–and with good reason. Olive oil has been used for centuries in the Mediterranean region for not only food, but also for rituals, medicines, lamp fuel and beauty. Now you can use this common kitchen ingredient to have a glowing face, soft skin and shiny hair–all for extremely cheap. Here are 9 creative ways to incorporate olive oil into your daily beauty regimen.

For all of these tips, be sure to only use extra virgin olive oil.

Hair

  • If you have dry hair and split ends, give your tresses a hot-oil treatment. Heat olive oil in a cup sitting in a saucepan of hot water. Massage a few tablespoons of heated olive oil into scalp and hair. Cover your hair wth a plastic bathing cap and leave on for 30 minutes or more. Remove bathing cap and shampoo as usual. Your hair will be noticeably softer and shinier than usual.

Face

  • Massage a few drops of olive oil onto face. Once the oil is completey rubbed in, take a 1/2 teaspoon of sugar and rub all over face to exfoliate dead skin cells. Wipe sugar off your face with a warm face cloth.
  • You can also use olive oil as shaving oil. Apply olive oil to face and shave as normal.
  • Add a few drops of olive oil to a cotton ball or Q-tip to use as a make-up remover.

Hands and Feet

  • For brittle nails and dry cuticles, soak your fingernails in a cup of warm olive oil for 30 minutes.
  • For an overnight spa treatment, rub olive oil on your hands and feet. Wear white cotton gloves over your hands and white socks over your feet. You will wake up with luxuriously soft hands and feet.

Body

  • Massage olive oil onto any dry or cracked areas of your body, such as your elbows and knees.
  • Mix olive oil and sugar together for a body exfoliating scrub when you are taking a shower.
  • Add several tablespoons of olive oil to your bath along with a few drops of your favorite essential oil for an overall moisturizing effect.

Check out these other DIY beauty articles on Intent: 

Got other DIY beauty secrets up your sleeve? Share them with the community in the comments below! 

Albert Einstein

“If a cluttered desk is a sign of a cluttered mind, Then what are we to think of an empty desk?”
~ Albert Einstein
 
Overflowing ashtrays, piles of books, coffee stained napkins scribbled with half-baked theories, mangled envelopes, semi-scribed journals, purloined pens, dog-eared dailies, notebooks, piles of paper and mountains of unopened letters…the strictness of order and the opposing efficiency of chaos? Well, I dunno’ about that. Albert Einstein may have been brilliant but to this neat-nick, I think he must have been a complete and total slob.
 
Theories of relativity aside – nobody needs to drop an apple onto my head for me to notice both sides of the tidiness fence – those who see the advantage of having a messy desk and those who slip into flames when a pen is left askew. (Okay. I admit it. I just described myself.)
 
While revealing your true inner being, if your desk is nasty maybe you’re just disorganized by nature, maybe your productivity skills are rusty, you’ve decided to cozy up to your own special brand of disorder or perhaps you’re the kind of person who – when finished with something – it spirals into a whirling abyss of invisibility. Although your mass-of-mess is mounding into Mount St. Helens, Mount Fuji or even Mount Everest, you’ve become blinded – and to your delusional sightless eyes, your chaos ceases to exist.
 
Finding the middle ground between what’s tidy and untidy can be slippery. A study at Columbia Business School found that people who keep a dashing desk actually spend more time shuffling through stuff than those who keep it mildly messy – systematizing and salvaging stuff takes time. And when it comes to a messy desk, time is of the essence – for it was our sloppy scientist who once said, “The only reason for time is so that everything doesn’t happen at once.”
 
Ebbing and flowing like the tide, when your desk is out of control, wrestling your stack of stuff can be absolutely aggravating. Slob that he was, our birthday boy also once said; “Out of clutter find simplicity; from discord find harmony; In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.”
 
When your messes reach maximum density, make a hole into your Himalayan-sized-hysteria – a gap into your Alpine-shaped-mishap by keeping your tidying trouble-free. Simply commit yourself to digging through your disaster for just five minutes a day.
 
And once you’ve reached China – umm-errr – your desk top, consider this simple, eco-friendly way of polishing it: Use two parts olive oil mixed with one part lemon juice. Pour just a few drops on a soft cloth, wipe away the dust, scuffs, and fingerprints, and make your wooden desk shine. No sprays, aerosols or chemicals needed—just two natural ingredients, and voila, a clean and polished surface.
 
Although a clean desk to some may symbolically resemble a blank slate (Yoo-hoo! Is anybody home?) I find peace when my desk is shipshape and tidy. While cleaning yours, you may not find Amelia Earhart or Jimmy Hoffa, some missing masterpieces by Rembrandt, Manet or Vermeer, or even the meaning of life but hopefully you’ll discover a newfound semblance of order and – ultimately – the long-lost surface of of your desk.
 
 

Drink Yourself Beautiful!

  Radiance can emerge from each and every one of us. In order to allow it to do so, we must first provide a sanctuary from modern day assaults. Providing a much-needed sanctuary is actually inexpensive and result-oriented, a fact that is sometimes shocking to even the most impatient and monetarily willing prospects. I have one sure key for that radiance to emerge: 

My best friend Peggy is 74 years old. Years ago over tea, I asked her if she had any “work” done because her skin was amazing. Peggy is a wealthy woman and I imagined that she would tell me that she has a pearl extract cream flown in from Europe that is mixed with placenta oil from the West Indies. Not so. She simply said four magic words, “Extra virgin olive oil.” She continues to use it every night. So does Sophia Loren. 

 And now, so do I. Just the other morning, when I was headed out for a walk, without any make-up, my husband said, “Honey, you look absolutely radiant!!!! 

Here is what I do, besides drinking water and watered-down natural juice regularly: 

 I have a small marble bowl next to my bathroom sink into which I pour extra virgin olive oil (EVOO). I wash my face, barely pat it dry, dip my fingers into the oil, and gently glide it all over my face and neck every night before I go to sleep. It is quickly absorbed and helps lock in the moisture. The high percentage of unsaturated fat, and vitamins A and E are helpful in preventing sun damage. This pure medium also works on the outside to soothe and replenish skin.  

I have also used EVOO for my daughter’s dandruff (twenty minutes on the scalp with a shower cap and then shampoo) and on my son’s chapped lips with almost instant results. Sophia Loren has talked of taking EVOO baths ritually. Dipping bread in EVOO curbs your appetite, because your body has been fed what it needs. 

 I believe our body is ready to drink itself beautiful. You? 

 So, here is something else I am considering and studying to drink ourselves beautiful: Resveratrol. Supposedly, it is similar to drinking and reaping the benefits of 1,000 glasses of red wine without the alcohol. I have seen before and after pictures on the Internet by individuals who have posted them because they are thrilled with the results. They are impressive. 

I was enjoying my glass or two of wine four nights a week, before the most recent study came out that even a glass of wine every other night could increase the chances of cancer in women drastically. My husband thinks I am nuts to stop drinking wine.  

Have you tried Resveratrol? Has it been working for you? Please let me know. 

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