Lettuce Discuss… Colds, Allergies and a little holistic help, for this Fall Season!

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This time of year people tend to get symptoms of allergies, colds, coughs etc…

We refuse to have them but that’s just us. However, if we do feel a little scratchy these are some of the natural remedies we use to great effect.

One of the first things we need to do at this time of year is boost the immune system, the simple way to do this is through juicing. If you don’t have a juicer you can also blend the raw ingredients in a food processor or classic blender.

Immune System Boost (Juice)

1 Apple

3 Celery stalks

4 stalks of Kale

½ Lemon

½ Ginger Root

Alternatively take 1 Clove of Garlic per day

As the saying goes… “An Apple a day keeps the Doctor away” Apples are very high in Vitamin C plus much more…

If you would like something a bit sweeter you could add a teaspoon of Manuka Honey. Or a locally produced honey. Or a teaspoon of Organic Raw un-refined sugar.

(I know Honey is a controversial topic among Vegans, please see our prior blog “Vegans and Honey?”)

You can do this 2 or 3 times a week, it will encourage and help your immune system.

The next thing to look at this time of year is a cold cure, I’m sure we have all heard of the following recipes. It wont hurt to run through them again.

Cold Cures

1 Teaspoon of honey

½ Teaspoon of cinnamon

Alternatively take 1 Clove of Garlic per day

Honey and cinnamon are both antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal and will knock out a cold within a day or two. Take this twice a day for 3 days.

*As a side note this will also help with bladder and kidney infections. It will act as a painkiller for arthritis and will reduce sugar levels and blood pressure.

The next thing this time of year is blood pressure. When we are feeling a little under the weather one of the causes of the nagging throbbing headache can be elevated blood pressure.   To lower your blood pressure you can take the cold cure above or use the following juice recipe.

Reduce Blood Pressure (Juice)

½ grapefruit

2 Stalks of celery

½ Cucumber

1 Clove of garlic

¼ Fennel bulb

This juice is great for lowering your blood pressure again you can take this 1 or twice a week or everyday if you want to. As this is all natural it can only do you good.

Next we will look at a little tonic for your Thyroid, as your thyroid is like your bodies control and distribution center we need to care for it. It is very important. You should be eating kale and seaweed to help it out but the following is a good tonic.

Thyroid Tonic (Juice)

6 Carrots

1 Cucumber

½ Lemon

10 Raddishes

You can take this twice a week or more if you are feeling it. Avoid soya as this can be damaging to your thyroid. There are plenty of alternatives to soy milk out there for example, almond, hemp, rice, and oat to name a few.

There is also Hazelnut milk, this is quite a common milk or nut to be allergic to so take care when drinking it. This brings me on to our next topic of allergies. Sometimes an allergy can present itself with cold or flu like symptoms, little itches on the skin, there is help however in the form of another juice.

Allergy Reduction

1 medium carrot

2 Large Oranges

1 handful of mint leaves

½ inch of Ginger root

Juice them together and drink twice a day. The symptoms should clear quickly.

Alternatively take 1 clove of garlic per day for allergies.

Garlic and its many uses

A single clove of garlic per day is a wonderful thing it can be used to treat so many ailments that we all have occasionally here is a list of what it is good for,

High cholesterol             *Crush the Garlic and Take

Athletes Foot             Crush the garlic and add a few drops of olive oil, Mix o a paste and apply

Poor Digestion            *Crush the garlic and Take

Low Energy                        *Crush the garlic and Take

Lowers Blood Sugar            *Crush the garlic and Take

Bronchitis                        *Crush the garlic and Take

Colon Cancer                        *Crush the garlic and Take

Yeast Infections            *Crush the garlic and Take

Respiratory Problems            *Crush the garlic and Take

Boosts the immune system            *Crush the garlic and Take

Increase Iron and Zinc Absorption            Crush the garlic and Take

Coughing                        *Crush the garlic and Take

Antioxidants                        *Crush the garlic and Take

Breast cancer                        *Crush the garlic and Take

Cold and flu                        *Crush the garlic and Take

Leukemia                        *Crush the garlic and Take

Anti Fungal                        *Crush the garlic and Take

Vaginitis                        *Crush the garlic and Take

Toothaches                        Crush the garlic and apply direct to the tooth

Warts            Crush the garlic and add a few drops of olive oil, Mix o a paste and apply

Stomach            *Crush the garlic and Take

Diabetes                        *Crush the garlic and Take

Parasites                        *Crush the garlic and Take

Allergies                        *Crush the garlic and Take

*Add the garlic to a spoon of olive oil –otherwise the garlic may burn your mouth

There are probably more benefits of garlic that we haven’t listed but feel free to let us know and we will research and add it.

Have a stress free and well Fall/Autumn

Many blessings

Mako and Hema

Lettuce Discuss… Is Ethically and organically produced Honey Vegan?

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Is honey cruelty-free?

Today’s blog is not trying to get tied up in the ethics of insects; it is however giving our opinion on the subject of, Is Honey Vegan?

Firstly, Bees are a very important part of the ecology of our planet. If there were no bees the majority of pollination of plants would not be carried out and the planet as we know it would simply cease to maintain plant life. That’s just a fact. Bees are essential to every species on the planet because they pollinate the flowers of fruit trees.  Without pollinated flowers, there is no fruit on most fruit trees.  So, without bees, we have little or no fruit.

Knowingly or not we kill many insects as we walk through grass, or driving to the store to buy supplies we find insects on the windshield of our cars.

If we are to be staunchly vegan and being vegan states we cannot kill insects, this in turn means we cannot eat non-organic produce. This would be because of the pesticides used to keep insects from destroying the produce.

Another problem we face is how do we know that no insects are harmed in organic farms. Should each ear of corn be hand picked? Should each carrot be checked for insects first?

It is necessary to point this out so we have a balanced debate. Does every vegan know the true origin of his or her produce? Do we know that no Being, animal, or insect was harmed?

With this in mind the concern for the Bee is in consistent, as pointed out above other activities kill more insects than bee keeping.

Is honey a forbidden animal product? Bees make it. However, only happy bees make honey. If bees are stressed or threatened they stop making honey and protect the hive. The Bee is happy making the honey (and we are talking of ethically kept Bees). They produce more honey, beeswax and propolis (a resinous mixture bees use to fill gaps in the hive) than they need each year. An average apiary can produce 160 lbs of honey. Ethical beekeepers take between 10 and 50lbs leaving the bees 110lbs of honey, which is more than they would use over the winter.

According to food journalist Rowan Jacobson, bees are used in the production of about 100 foods, including almonds, avocados, broccoli, canola, cherries, cucumbers, lettuce, peaches, pears, plums, sunflowers, and tomatoes. Due to their pollination.

As with all our actions and decisions people will see grey areas. Not all honey is mass produced not all honey is ethically produced. The important thing is to research where your honey comes from. Is it ethically produced? Do the beekeepers care for the health of Bees and the environment that they live in?

If you want to support ethically produced honey and helping the bees survive, support your local organic apiary. Look for these icons

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We consider ourselves to be vegan and believe we trust our own ethics we use and eat honey. It has so many benefits it is hard to ignore.

Manuka Honey benefits

Before we give the benefits there are things to look out for, each tub of Manuka honey bears its own Unique Manuka Factor (UMF) – this scale identifies the level of anti-bacterial potency. The UMF rating of 10+ is the minimum required to gain the UMF rating to be considered effective for purpose. Any Manuka Honey that meets or exceeds this requirement is commonly referred to as Active Manuka Honey. The Optimum levels of UMF are 10+ to 15+, so look out for this on your tub.

Manuka honey is anti bacterial and antimicrobial you can use it topically and by taking it internally. You can apply it directly to wounds and it will stop any bacteria from growing.

Digestive health, if you have bloating, stomach pain, indigestion, acid reflux, irritable bowl syndrome, and stomach ulcers. Stir a spoon of honey in some hot but not boiling water or tea and drink.

Immunity, help your immune system with honeys antibacterial properties stir a spoon of honey with some lemon to prevent a cold. The high antibacterial levels will treat ulcers, skin infections, cuts, cold sores, abrasions and more.

There are many more benefits and we have included a link below, we are in no way affiliated with Honey Mark Products it is useful information for your own research.

http://www.honeymarkproducts.com/our-company/organizations/

Many Blessings

Mako & Hema

Lettuce Discuss… How to Make Vegan Gluten Free Pasta Taste Great!

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Lettuce Discuss… How to Make Vegan Gluten Free Pasta Taste Great!

In our experience Vegan gluten free pasta tastes like cardboard!

However, we have learned (by experimenting) to make it taste great!

This is a quick and easy recipe to make.

This is all subject to how much pasta you want whether you want a lot or a little for yourself so we will assume that its one person average portion.

Ingredients

½ cup of Organic Brown Rice Pasta

1 Jar of Organic Vegan Marinara Sauce

Olive oil

Sweet Basil Pesto Sauce (we use this to add as a spice not as a sauce)

Earth Balance Vegan Soy Free Spread. (It’s the one in the Red Tub)

A palm full of almonds, optional!

(You can also add vegetables to this if you feel like but we are assuming a basic pasta marinara)

Method

First we want to boil a pan of water.

When the water is boiling add a tablespoon of olive oil to the water. This will help to stop the pasta sticking to itself.

Then add the pasta. Be careful not to over cook the pasta as it will go limp and soggy. Check it very regularly as Vegan Gluten free pasta has a habit of over cooking really quickly.

When the pasta is cooked drain it under cold water. Leave it to sit for a minute so it drains completely.

Then get your small wok or small frying pan, place a Tablespoon of the Earth Balance soy free spread (butter) in the pan and melt the butter. Not too hot or it will burn this is all done on a really low heat.

Then add the pasta, once the pasta is in the pan we sprinkle 1 teaspoon of the “simply organic sweet pesto sauce powder” over the pasta. Then add the palm full of almonds (if desired) this gives it a nice crunch and flavour!

Fry this up, Constantly stir this (DO NOT LET IT SIT). The pasta will start sticking to the pan, (this is ok) this is what gives the pasta the flavours. You want to cook all the water out of the pasta- (don’t worry about cleanup, just soak the pan in some water and it will lift easily due to the NON GLUten) at this point you can add your desired (if any) vegetables.

Once cooked add the marinara sauce to your liking, you may like it dry or wet.

Let it cook until the sauce is hot or to your liking.

Then serve and enjoy!

This is how you keep your pasta tasting like pasta not cardboard!

Many Blessings

Mako and Hema.

Lettuce Discuss… Borscht (Beetroot Soup)

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Lettuce Discuss… Borscht (Beetroot soup)

See the previous blog for the health benefits of beetroot.

Ingredients

1 large onion

5 fresh beetroot

3 large tomatoes

3 garlic cloves

1 tablespoon of sunflower or olive oil

1/4 teaspoon of fresh ginger

Sea salt

Black pepper

Boiling water

(May Add Cooked White Potatoes, Cilantro, and or Bay Leaves as a garnish to add more flavor)

Method

Add oil to large soup pan.

Chop the onion into small pieces and add the garlic. Fry gently (be careful not to burn them)

Peel the beetroots and cut in big chunks and add to the pan.

Add Boiling water to the same pan -add just enough water to cover the beetroot.

Add the ginger.

Simmer on a low heat for 20-30 minutes (do not boil).

Blend tomatoes in a food processor (or blender), then add to the pan.

Bring to a boil -as soon as it boils turn down the heat to simmer for a further 15 minutes.

Add a sprinkling of sea salt and some of black pepper.

                  You may also like to add steamed or cooked white potatoes, cilantro, and or

                  bay leaves as a garnish to add more flavor!

Serve, eat, and enjoy. Feel the goodness!

Simple Juice Recipe

1 Beetroot (wash, slice it, and run it through a juicer) drink!

If this is not to your taste add 1 apple or 1 carrot to sweeten the flavor.

Lettuce Discuss… The Health Benefits of Beetroots

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Lettuce Discuss… the health benefits of Beetroots

 The little red vegetable that packs a punch of goodness!

The beetroot contains 20 times more nitrates than any other vegetable.

Beetroots contain sodium, magnesium, calcium, and phosphorous all beneficial minerals for the body,

Beetroot juice is a rich source of natural sugar and is considered one of the best in vegetable juices as it contains potassium, sodium, calcium, sulfur, phosphorus, iodine, chlorine, copper, vitamins B1 (thiamine), B2 (riboflavin), B3 (niacin), B6 (pyridoxine), C. Although rich in digestible carbohydrates, the juice is low in calorie content and has good amount of proteins and amino acids.

Beetroot contains Folic Acid: This is important in cell division and growth. Children and adults need folic acid to produce healthy red blood cells and prevent anemia.

Cleanses the Colon, Strengthens your gall bladder, and liver: Eating the beetroot naturally de-stresses the colon, you may have more bowel movements after eating but this is natural. It supports and strengthens the liver and gall bladder too. Removing stress from both organs.

Cleanses Your Blood: Removes the toxins from your blood as it is a great anti oxidant!

It Boosts your immunity: Encourages the bodies’ natural immune system! (This is especially important for people who battle autoimmune disorders- Autoimmune disorders are by definition, your own cells attach itself. However eating or juicing 2-3 times a week will put your body back into balance, healing itself rather then on the attack)

Fights Cancer: Betacyanin, the pigment that gives beetroot its velvet deep color, is an antioxidant that possesses anti-cancer properties. In 2011, a study carried out by Howard University in Washington, USA,  found that betacyanin slowed tumor growth by 12.5 percent when exposed to prostate and breast cancer cells.

Heal Acne: The great number of anthocyanins within beetroot, has a positive impact on the condition of skin and hair. Beets can improve complexion, reduce inflammation, help with dry skin, reduces freckles and age spots and makes your skin younger looking just by drinking the juice is sufficient. However, it can be rubbed directly on to the skin -it may stain a little so its best if you are not on your way out. The stain naturally gets absorbed into your skin.

Beetroots can Eliminate and Prevent Cellulite: Take 3 medium beetroots and grate them, to this add 3 tablespoons of honey (Raw is best) and 1 tsp ground black pepper.  Place the mixture onto the areas to be treated and then wrap over the area with cellophane. Leave in place for 30 to 40 minutes and rinse it all off.  If you then repeat this once a week your skin will become smooth and visible signs of cellulite will disappear.

Beetroot can be used as a Facial Toner: Mix one beet with 1/2 cup chopped cabbage and ¼ cup of water. Blend them together really well so they will sit in an ice cube tray. Freeze the cubes in the freezer. Any time you feel you need to rejuvenate your skin, rub one ice cube over your face. It will feel fresh and rejuvenated. (Best to do before bedtime to allow the stain to naturally absorb).

Beetroot is a Great source of iron: Iron is used in the body for many reasons but mainly for carrying oxygen to the blood cells. Approximately 2/3 of iron in the body is found in hemoglobin (the red protein found in blood).

Beetroot Protects against Heart Disease:Nitrates lower blood pressure because bacteria in the mouth and gut convert it into the gas nitric oxide, which relaxes and widens the blood vessels, allowing blood to circulate more freely. (This natural process may help with headaches and migraines, by allowing the blood to flow).

Lowers blood pressure: A 2010 study carried out by Queen Mary’s University in London found that drinking just one 1 cup (US) or 250 ml (EU) of beetroot juice a day dramatically lowered blood pressure for several hours.

Treats and cures boils and abscesses: By drinking the juice or eating the vegetable, in addition, you can apply it directly to the infected area too by cutting the beetroot and rubbing it on. (Make sure to dispose the used beetroot into the trash after applying to the skin).

Full of fiber: Fiber is an important part of a healthy diet. A diet high in fiber has many health benefits. It can help prevent heart disease, diabetes, weight gain, some cancers, and can also improve digestive health.

It may be a small vegetable but it does pack a lot in!

We will add a recipe for juicing and a soup next!

Many blessings

Mako and Hema

Lettuce Discuss… Organic Maple Syrup

Maple sap being collected

Maple sap being collected

Lettuce Discuss… Organic Maple Syrup

When I make our pancakes, I like the bittersweet flavor that is typical among us Brits, I like the sugar and the Lemon or the Lime. However my favorite sweetener is Organic Maple Syrup. Not only because it tastes good but it also has additional benefits. Yes a sweetener with healthy side effects! This doesn’t mean go eat it every day. Moderation is the key with any sugar.

Lets start with how Organic Maple Syrup is made,

The simplified version is this…

You tap a maple tree with a hole put a tube in the hole and collect the sap in a bucket. You then boil the sap and evaporate most of the water so that the sap gets thicker. You then have maple syrup! There are no additives, no chemical process other than the heating up of the sap.

How It’s Graded…

Organic Maple syrup in the United States is graded by color, as either Grade A or Grade B. Grade A is a lighter color then Grade B, and is made from the first sap tapped from the maple tree. Grade B is darker in color, and made from the last stages of the sap tapped from the maple tree.

What’s in it?

The sap from the xylem and water. That’s it!

Organic maple syrup has a relatively low mineral content, it consists mainly of potassium and calcium. It also contains significant amounts of zinc and manganese.

It is reported the darker the color (Grade B) the better the syrup is for you. It has been seen to have more concentrated anti oxidants, calcium and zinc.

It is also “reported” that the natural antioxidants found in organic maple syrup – inhibit two carbohydrate-hydrolyzing enzymes that are relevant to type 2 diabetes.

Did you know, compared to honey, maple syrup has 15 times more calcium and 90% less sodium.

It doesn’t stop there- the University of Rhode Island (URI) has now identified 54 compounds in maple syrup, which is double the amount previously reported, many with antioxidant activity and potential health benefits. In laboratory studies, they acted as anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory agents.

Read the full report here…

http://healthnewsreport.blogspot.com/2011/04/maple-syrups-health-benefits.html.

Therefore next time you have pancakes just pour some maple syrup over, feel happy and enjoy.

Many Thanks and Blessings

Mako and Hema

Lettuce Discuss… Naturally whitening your teeth

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Whitening our teeth is becoming more and more popular as people try to get that super bleached white look. Using dentist bleaches and whitening strips often strips the enamel off the teeth if you over do it. People have lost teeth because of it and needed root canal work done (that is a no, no) see video below.

Ok here we go, we have collected a few ways to do this from our travels.

1)            Baking Soda and Lemon, The chemicals in the baking soda and the citrus in the lemon react to give a whitening smile. Baking soda is also slightly gritty so it can clean like very mild sandpaper. Place the mixture on a toothbrush and brush normally.

2)            Baking soda and Hydrogen Peroxide, this is usually the home remedy of choice. Use a small amount of each mixed together put on a toothbrush and use as normal.

3)            Coconut Pulling, yes again the mighty coconut. Place a spoonful of coconut oil in your mouth and swish about for 5 – 20 minutes. You can add a few drops to a toothbrush and brush it on too. Don’t forget this is great for your gums as coconut oil is antimicrobial.

4)            Apple Cider Vinegar, this can take up to a month to work but is less aggressive than baking soda. You do have to use it regularly and be very consistent. Use like normal toothpaste but be warned it can strip enamel, to eliminate the striping of the enamel you will have to brush with toothpaste straight after the vinegar. (I imagine you would anyway, have you tasted the vinegar?)

5)            Orange and Lemon Peels, you rub these directly on the teeth but again they contain acid so regular brushing afterwards is essential to remove the acid or your enamel will start to wear.

6)            Strawberries, this is one I haven’t used before. Mash strawberries up in a bowl and use as a toothpaste leave on for 2 or 3 minutes. Then rinse with water and brush with toothpaste. A lot of people say this works straight away. I haven’t tried it yet though so please leave a comment if it does.

7)            Peelu Plant Fibers, this is available in toothpaste form or you can buy the powder and mix it with toothpaste. This is so gentle you can use it everyday.

8)            Toothpaste and Baking Soda, yes applying baking soda with toothpaste will do the trick too. It’s just the same as “Smokers” toothpaste.

The video below explains why you should say no to a Root Canal.

If you know of any more send us a comment or email and i’ll add it to the list

Many Thanks

Bless you all

Mako and Hema