Do you want to have more energy, feel better both physically and emotionally and improve your overall health and vitality? I’m going to share with you four types of healing foods that will revitalize and energize your body. If you eat a combination of these foods on a regular basis, your energy levels will soar and you will turbo charge your health and well being!
1. Meat on the Bone
Thanksgiving dinner, is for many, the most memorable meal of the year, which happens to be centered on a large bird, slow cooked whole. When cooking meat, the more everything stays together – fat, bone, marrow, skin, other connective tissue – the better. The better quality meat you start off with (grass fed or pasture raised animals), the better it tastes and the better it is for you.
Cooking Meat Rule #1: Don’t Overcook It
There are two kinds of people, those who like their steak rare and those who don’t. If you’re the medium-rare type, you’ll know which side you fall on by answering this question: What would upset you more, if the steak you ordered came to your table undercooked or overcooked? When it comes to steak, it’s not the size that matters, it’s the consistency and texture. Overcooked meat is tough because its fat, protein and sugar molecules have gotten tangled and fused together during the cooking process. The result is a tough piece of meat that requires more work with a knife and more chewing, as well as more time to digest. The worst part is that so many of the nutrients we need are ruined.
Cooking Meat, Rule #2: Use Moisture, Time and Parts
Chefs will often say that some flavors take time to develop, especially when it comes to roasts and whole birds. This is because sometimes you have to wait for certain nutrients to be released. Cooking meat slow is the best way to turn an ordinary meal into something extraordinary – in terms of taste and nutrition. Depending on the cut, “meat” may include muscle, tendon, bone, fat, skin, blood, and glands – each a world of chemical diversity. When the diversity is released on your tongue, you can taste it, and the rich, savory, flavor means a world of nutrients are on their way.¹
The most popular way to cook meats at low temperatures and slow is the use of a slow cooker or crock pot. However, all you need is moisture, time and parts (as many different tissue types as possible: ligaments, bone, fat, skin, etc.). Making soup, stewing, keeping a top on to trap the steam, basting often when cooking in the oven – all these techniques keep the moisture inside the meat, enabling water molecules to make magic happen.
Slow cooked meats are nutritious because of their minerals. Mineral salts are released from bone and cartilage during stewing, as well as from the meat itself. These minerals include calcium, potassium, iron, sulfate,phosphate, sodium and chloride. Overcooking these flavorful nutrients results in an indigestible matrix of polymerized flesh that forms when meat begins to dry out. You can only taste, and your body can only make use of minerals that remain free and available.
More than anything else, the health of your joints depends upon the health of the collagen in your ligaments, tendons, and on the ends of your bones. Traditional cultures used to eat soup and stocks made from bones all the time, and doing so supplied their bodies with the whole family of glycosaminoglycans (large family of molecules that makes up collagen), which used to protect peoples joints. ¹ Now that few people make bone broth anymore, many are limping into doctors’ offices for prescriptions, surgeries and recommendations to buy over-the-counter joint supplements containing glucosamine (joint building molecule found in bone broth). Collagen is not only found in joints but also in bone, skin, arteries and hair. This means that glucosamine-rich broth is kind of a youth serum, capable of rejuvinating and revitalizing your body!
Until recently (the past fifty years or so), organ meats were apart of American dining integrated into our diets through a wide range of dishes. Cookbooks written back in the 1950’s contain organ meat recipes along with other variety cuts alongside familiar casseroles and crumb cakes. The most popular organ meat used in American culture was liver.
A biochemist named Adelle Davis (nutritional pioneer in the mid 20th century) was a famous proponent of the use of organ meats for optimal health and healing. Davis used liver as a whole food vitamin and mineral supplement. As she explains in her book Let’s Cook It Right, “The liver is the storage place or the savings bank of the body. If there is an excess of protein, sugar, vitamins, and any mineral except calcium and phosphorus, part of the excess is stored in the liver until it is needed…Liver is, therefore, nutritionally the most outstanding meat which can be purchased”. ² If the cow is raised on depleted soil or is not fed a mineral rich diet of pasture grasses or hay (what cattle are suppose to eat), the savings bank of the liver is likely low. Liver is also the garbage disposal of the body. Therefore, you don’t want to eat adult commercial grain fed beef liver from cattle given growth hormones and antibiotics. If you only have access to commercially raised beef liver, buy calves liver.
For those who are not accustomed to the taste and texture of liver, you can receive the same benefits from consuming desiccated beef liver powder or tablets. You can mix a tablespoon of the powder in water, vegetable juice or cherry juice or you can take tablets. Most beef liver supplements come form cattle raised in Argentina where there’s few people and lots of grassy pasture. Another option is freezing whole liver from properly raised animals and cutting off a chunk and blending into a smoothie. The taste is hardly detectable.
Fat cleanses, fuels, lubricates and protects the body. It is a necessary catalyst for utilizing minerals and proteins. In particular, a diet rich in raw fat is important for excellent health. Raw fat is fat from animals or plants that has not been heated or adulterated in any way. All the enzymes, co-factors and nutrients are in tact and highly utilized by the cells of the body from raw fats. When fats are eaten raw, they can and will clean, fuel, lubricate and protect the body properly. The following fats are easiest to digest, assimilate, and utilize: raw butter, raw eggs, raw cream, the fat in and on raw meats (all flesh food), raw milk cheeses, fresh raw coconut, avocado, stone-pressed olive oil and other non-vegetable cold-pressed below 96º F oils.³
Eating raw eggs or avocados provides fat to bind with the released cooked fat and toxins and escorts them from the body. Avocados are especially helpful for cleansing and strengthening the liver. The fat in raw cream and full fat raw milk soothes and lubricates nerves and muscles. Raw eggs and butter are easiest for the liver to digest. The fat in raw butter strengthens organs and glands, heals eyes, cleanses arteries, chelates and escorts byproducts and waste from the body and lubricates bones, cartilage and teeth. It is utilized for cleansing, dissolving, lubricating, fueling, protecting, rejuvenating and and helping to reproduce cells. The body uses fat, protein and minerals in raw milk cheeses to absorb toxins. The fat in raw meat is the most valuable for healing, soothing and lubricating tissue faster than any other fats. Raw meat fat and raw coconut cream have all of the healing properties of all other fats and oils.³
In most states, the retail sale of raw milk, butter and cream is illegal unless you buy it through a cow share program from a local small dairy farm that raises pastured dairy cows. However, the sale of raw milk cheeses is legal in all states. Examples of palatable raw meat are sashimi, ceviche, raw kibbeh and steak tartare.
Green leafy vegetables are very alkalizing and detoxifying to the body. When consumed in concentrated doses such as in the form of fresh raw juice, the nutrients, sugars and chlorophyll get into the cells rapidly and turbocharge your energy and sense of well being. The best choice for a substantial increase in energy is raw fresh green vegetable juices, containing 80% celery juice. I suggest drinking 8-16 oz first thing in the morning. The juice provides many nutrients that alkalize excessive and toxic acids in the stomach and blood, healthfully waking the body for the day. Raw juicing is a fantastic means of supplementing our vitamin, enzyme and mineral deficiencies without taking expensive whole food based supplements. Organic celery and parsley are the most alkalizing and detoxifying vegetables to use for juicing. Carrots and beets are a great source of healthy sugars to add to juices for a healthy dose of energizing carbohydrates but don’t make them the base.
A large colorful salad made with dark green lettuces provides a great source of nutrients and filling fiber and make a great component to meals. Whole food smoothies made with lots of greens and good fats such as avocado, coconut cream, flax seed oil or raw eggs provide a nutrient rich and energizing quick meal or snack. Smoothies are a great way to get your veggies in and are more convenient to make than juicing. Make sure you don’t add too much fruit. Too much sugar from fruit can offset blood sugar balance. You want 1/2 – 1 cup of fruit per smoothie. Berries are the best choice because they are high in fiber and low in sugar.
1. Deep Nutrition. Shanahan, C. Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data. 2009. p 128, 135.
2. Let’s Cook It Right. Davis, A. Signet Classics. 1970. p. 87.
3. We Want to Live. Vanderplanitz, A. Carnelian Bay Castle Press. 2005. p 186, 187.