Gwaka + Homemade Tortilla Chips

Gwaka + Homemade Tortilla Chips

Summer is in full fledge now! The birds are chirping, the suns a-blazin’ and the avocados are ripe!🥑😉 One of my favorite summer snacks is guacamole or as I prefer to call it GWAKA!!! Gwaka is packed with ripe avocado and lots of other fresh produce like tomato, onion, cilantro, and lime… it’s like a Mexican fiesta in your mouth! Pair it with some homemade corn tortilla chips and you are ready for a party!

CD1DCB95-F2BE-4DB2-BBBD-034776AA550F129FF61A-4DAD-4115-A4E9-C8492178B5ACAvocado Benefits:

  • Great source of healthy fats — 15g per avocado!
  • Contains 20+ vitamins and minerals — the main ones include vitamin K, folate, vitamin C, potassium, vitamin B5 and B6
  • Don’t contain sodium, cholesterol or saturated fats 
  • Contains more potassium than banana!!!
  • High in fiber
  • Contains antioxidants like lutein and zeaxanthin — these are important for eye health
  • They leave you feeling satisfied longer — hello weight loss!

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Gwaka + Homemade Tortilla Chips
 
Barefoot Brit:
Recipe type: Appetizer
Serves: 2C gwaka
Ingredients
  • Chips
  • 6 Corn tortillas
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp lime juice
  • ½ tsp cumin powder
  • ½ tsp chili lime powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • Gwaka
  • 1 ripe avocado
  • ½ C tomato (diced)
  • ¼ C white onion (diced)
  • 2 tbsp lime juice
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp cilantro (diced)
Instructions
  1. Chips
  2. Preheat the oven to 300°F
  3. In a small bowl mix together olive oil and lime juice (set aside)
  4. Cut the tortilla into wedges (6-8 per tortilla)
  5. Place on a baking sheet
  6. Using a food brush -- brush the olive oil and lime juice mixture onto each tortilla wedge
  7. In a separate small bowl, mix together cumin powder, chili lime powder, and salt
  8. Sprinkle seasoning mix over the tortilla wedges
  9. Place in the oven for 15 mins and then take out and rotate the pan and put in for another 15-20 mins -- until golden brown
  10. Gwaka
  11. In a medium bowl add avocado, diced tomato (without the seeds), onion, lime, cilantro, and salt
  12. Mash with a potato masher
  13. ENJOY!

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Whatever this weekend brings you, I hope it is full of fun, laughter, family + friends and of course gwaka + chips🥑☀️💃🏼

XO

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Adrenal Health

Adrenal Health

What is the biggest stress in your life?!  Stress causes a physiological response in the body that occurs in seconds when a stressful stimulus occurs due to the release of norepinephrine from the adrenal glands causing the body to go into “fight or flight”. After that stress response occurs much more happens in the body like an increase in cortisol. Increased cortisol levels can have beneficial and negative effects on the body especially if it is constantly elevated or flat-lined.

Physiology

  • The adrenal gland is a tiny little organ that sits on top of the kidneys
  • The adrenal gland has 2 major sections called adrenal cortex and adrenal medulla
  • In the adrenal cortex is where steroid hormones are produced such as cortisol, aldosterone, and androgens (DHEA + testosterone)
  • In the adrenal medulla is where catecholamines are produced such as epinephrine and norepinephrine
  • The function of the adrenal glands it to help the body deal with stress 

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Hormone’s Function

Cortisol 

  • “stress hormone”
  • Helps with the production of red blood cells
  • Helps reduce inflammation
  • Helps regulate blood sugar levels

Aldosterone 

  • Plays a huge role in controlling blood pressure
  • It controls the balance of sodium and potassium in the body
    • Its ability to hold in sodium allows water to follow, which keeps blood pressure maintained

Androgens

  • Helps with the development of sex organs and 2° sex characteristics
  • Precursor to estrogens

Catecholamines 

  • Put the body into “fight or flight”
  • Increase glucose (sugar) in the blood
  • Increase basal metabolic rate

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Adrenal Conditions

There are several adrenal pathologies including Cushing’s syndrome, hyperaldosteronism, adrenocortical insufficiency, Addison’s disease, and adrenal tumors but what I want to focus on is HPA axis dysregulation more commonly known as ADRENAL FATIGUE!!!!

Do you have a difficult time waking up in the morning and not really “wake up” until 10am!?! Then to get a lull in the afternoon between 2-4pm? But then that energy boost comes at 6pm but then you soon become tired at 9pm but resist sleeping and get a second wind at 11pm and then can’t fall asleep…. does this sound like you? If so you may be suffering from HPA axis dysregulation!

Common symptoms of HPA Axis Dysregulation:

  • Lack of energy
  • Mild depression
  • Low libido
  • Muscular weakness
  • Increased PMS + mood swings
  • Altered blood pressure
  • Insomnia
  • Frequent colds
  • Hair loss
  • Sugar + salt cravings
  • Irritable + anxious
  • Weight changes

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Labs to Assess Adrenal Function

  • DHEA-S
  • Cortisol
  • ACTH
  • Good tests to consider for HPA axis dysregulation symptoms:
    • Thyroid function (TSH, free T4, free T3)
    • Ferritin
    • B12
    • CBC + differential
    • Blood sugars

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Nutrition for Adrenals

Foods to LIMIT

  • Sugar (processed + refined)
  • Alcohol
  • Caffeine
  • Pop
  • Processed food, fast food + fried food

Foods to ENJOY 

**A whole food, organic balanced diet

  • Lots of fruits + vegetables
  • Nuts + seeds
  • Healthy fats (olive oil, avocado oil, coconut oil, grass-fed butter, avocado, omega 3)
  • Grass-fed lean meats + wild fish
  • Whole grains
  • 2-3L of water a day (keep hydrated!!)

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Lifestyle for Adrenals

  • Deep belly breathing
    • This allows for the massaging of the vagus nerve, which is connected to all your internal organs
    • This will help the body switch to parasympathetic mode “rest + digest”
  • Sleep
    • Try and sleep before 10pm — in TCM every hour of sleep before 12am counts as 2 hours of restorative sleep for the body!
  • Stress management
    • Leaving unhealthy relationships
    • Meditation
    • Vacation
    • Spending time in the forest
  • Exercise
    • Low – medium intensity
    • Include a variety of exercises (yoga, stretching, weights, cardio, swimming)

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Nutrients for Adrenals

  • Vitamin C
    • Most important vitamin for the adrenal gland
    • Helps with the adrenal hormone production
    • Antioxidant to the adrenal gland itself
  • B vitamins
    • Helps with the hormone production
    • Deficiency in B5 can lead to shrinking of the adrenal gland
    • Modulates the stress response
    • Helps to provide energy to the body
  • Magnesium
    • Most important mineral for the adrenal gland
    • Essential for the production of enzymes and energy needed for the production of adrenal hormones
    • “spark plug for adrenal gland”
  • Herbs:
    • Rhodiola rosea (Arctic rose)
    • Withania somnifera (Ashwaghanda)
    • Panax ginseng (Koren ginseng)
    • Glycyrrhiza galabra (Licorice)
    • Eleutherococcus sinticosus (Eleuthro)

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So many of us suffer from HPA axis dysregulation… just know that this is NOT normal and you don’t have to live like that. Be nice to your adrenals and you will have more energy then you could have ever imagined!

XO

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5 Tips for Glowing Skin

5 Tips for Glowing Skin

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Homemade Nutella

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Hydrotherapy is one of the oldest treatments that has been used by ancient Egyptians, Greek, and Romans who used spring water to help heal sickness. It was brought back to modern times by Sebastian Kneipp in the 1900’s… so we can thank him for all the wonderful water spas like the Scandinavian spa in Whistler😉 We learn hydrotherapy in school and I think it is very underused. It is the cheapest treatment you can do for yourself…FREE! This post is here to inspire you to incorporate water into your life in different ways💦
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Mini Egg Brownie Parfait

With the mini egg consumption fully underway its safe to say the Easter celebrations have begun! I started off the celebrations with a healthy recipe (raw vegan carrot cake bites) to have you feeling good by the time this one came out as it’s not as nice for the waste line but will have your taste buds lovin’ you forever! This mini egg inspired treat is an amazing dessert to follow your Easter dinner. It is a mix of warm chewy browny with a fluffy coconut whipped cream and a mini egg crunch🐣. Believe me, you are gonna wish this dessert was bottomless😉
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Raw Vegan Carrot Cake

Raw Vegan Carrot Cake

April is an exciting month because we get to have an extra break from school to celebrate Easter! To me when I hear Easter, I think all thing chocolate, easter eggs, cute pastel colors, and fuzzy little bunnies! We all know that bunnies enjoy carrots so what better way to celebrate Easter than a carrot cake (raw and vegan to boot)🥕🐰. When I was younger I absolutely loved carrot cake especially all the cream cheese frosting that was slathered on top… my mouth is watering just writing about it! I wanted to recreate a healthier version of carrot cake to help counter all the mini eggs you will be consuming (stay tuned for my next recipe if you LOVE mini eggs😉).
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Detoxification Smoothie

Spring is the time to detoxify the body! If you read my previous post all about detoxification you will know what I am talking about! Including detox promoting foods into the diet can be a little bit difficult but with a few easy changes, you can have yourself a morning detox smoothie that will be super easy to incorporate into your morning routine!!!!! I know that adding a bunch of health crap into the blender normally ends up being like swamp water but believe me when I say this tastes like a berry-citrus Orange Julius 😉
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Spring has finally sprung in Vancouver!! Sun is shining, birds are singing and I couldn’t be happier! Spring is the perfect time to detoxify the body. According to TCM, the 5 elements theory shows that the liver is related to the wood element, which is associated with spring (you can learn more about TCM here)! The main organ that is focused on when doing a detox is the liver but you don’t want to forget the kidney too!!! The whole purpose of doing a detox is to give the body a break and eliminate toxins allowing you to feel AMAZING!!!!
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