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Turkey Pumpkin Chili

Turkey Pumpkin Chili. What do these three words have in common? A delicious dish!  Thanks to www.wholefoodsmarket.com  for this great recipe.

 Serves 6

Besides adding a sweet nutty flavor to dishes, pumpkin is a ready source of vitamin A, which boosts the nutrition content of this offbeat chili. Garnish each portion with a dollop of sour cream and chopped cilantro.

Ingredients

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 small yellow onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, cored, seeded and chopped
2 jalapeños, seeded and finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 pound ground white or dark meat turkey
1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes, with their liquid
1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin purée
1 cup water
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
Salt and pepper to taste
1 (15-ounce) can kidney beans, rinsed and drained

Method

Heat oil in a large pot over medium high heat. Add onion, bell pepper, jalapeños and garlic and cook, stirring frequently, until tender, about 5 minutes. Add turkey and cook until browned. Add tomatoes, pumpkin, water, chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium low and add beans. Cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 30 minutes more. Ladle chili into bowls and serve.

Nutrition

Per serving: 280 calories (110 from fat), 13g total fat, 2.5g saturated fat, 55mg cholesterol, 580mg sodium, 23g total carbohydrate (8g dietary fiber, 7g sugar), 20g protein

Glowing From The Inside

Everyone knows the importance of eating a healthy diet for weight control, but how much do we know about eating for healthy skin? People spend a great deal of money on age-defying lotions, but few know that the most important skin care products come from your grocery store.  Read on to find out what tips we recommend to regain that inner glow and to keep it from fading.

  • Eating the right kinds of protein. Protein is necessary for cell repair. Our favourite picks are fish, followed by these other protein-packed animal products: egg whites, skinless chicken and turkey breast.
  • Healthy fats are essential. Fats and oils  provide anti-inflammatory protection and antioxidants. Look to fatty fish for anti-aging omega-3 fatty acids. Salmon, mackerel and albacore tuna are among your best bets. Also include extra virgin olive oil. It has the double benefit of helping your skin and possibly lowering your bad cholesterol.
  • Avoid  sugar and high-glycemic carbohydrates. This category of food includes potatoes, rice and white pasta which can cause a spike in blood sugar resulting in harmful chemical changes in your body. These foods fuel the creation of  free radicals and the break down collagen, therefore ranking them among skin’s greatest enemies. Our bodies need carbohydrates though, so get your fill from low-glycemic fruits and vegetables.
  •  H2O please.  While the number of glasses per day is still open for debate, we do know that drinking plenty of water between meals means that our cells are staying hydrated and also enzymatic properties are functioning optimally during meal times.
  • Green Tea. This beverage deserves a category all its own in any article about foods for healthy skin. Green tea’s anti-inflammatory properties, and its ability to protect cell membranes may help prevent or reduce the risk of skin cancer. A study published  in the Archives of Dermatology shows that whether taken orally or applied to the skin, green tea can reduce the risk of damage from ultraviolet light (such as the burning rays of the sun), and thus reduce the risk of skin cancer.

For more information on how to best balance a healthy diet, contact your local healthcare practitioner trained in nutrition. Or if you are in the area contact our clinic in Aurora, ON.

Understanding Heartburn

Written by: Dr. Christine Davis, Naturopathic Doctor

Did you know that heartburn affects 25-35% of the US population? Heartburn (or Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease) is not only painful, but it can also lead to other complications including: asthma, chronic cough, dental problems, Barrett’s esophagus (a change in the lining of the esophagus that can increase the risk of cancer), esophageal ulcers and narrowing and scarring of the esophagus.  It is a result of stomach acid spilling into the esophagus from the relaxation of the lower esophageal sphincter (the valve that separates your esophagus from your stomach).

The traditional medical solution has been to block the acid production, which will alleviate the pain and also the damage from occurring.   However, in blocking the acid production, you block a key step in the digestion process. Stomach acid is necessary to digest food, especially protein and micronutrients such as calcium, magnesium, and vitamin B12. Stomach acid activates digestive enzymes in your small intestine, the molecules that break down the food into smaller parts for absorption.  As well, it acts as a barrier from harmful bacteria.  Therefore, blocking acid production from occurring can result in more serious complications such as irritable bowel syndrome, depression, fatigue, dementia, hip fractures and osteoporosis.

So, what can be done?

Firstly, get tested at your doctor for H. Pylori, hiatal hernia and ulcers.  H. Pylori is a bacteria that can exist in the stomach and is a major contributor to ulcers and gastritis (inflammation of the stomach lining). Hiatal hernias and ulcers can sometimes mimic the pain of GERD.  It may be necessary to have an endoscopy to assess for the presence of stomach ulcers before initiating treatment.

Secondly, identify food triggers and sensitivities.  There are several basic food triggers including: fried foods, alcohol, caffeine, soda, spicy food, tomato and citrus.  It is important to be mindful of these common triggers when eating.  In more recent years, it has been found that food sensitivities including dairy and gluten have a strong link to heartburn.  An IgG Food Panel can tell you what foods you are most sensitive to.  Junk food, processed foods and overeating can all contribute to GERD.

Thirdly, talk to your naturopathic doctor about natural remedies to soothe and heal the gut including DGL, glutamine, marshmallow, slippery elm, zinc and magnesium.