Archive for the ‘Cleveland’ Category
If you’re looking for a way to jump start your New Year, I have just the thing: a 5-day fruit and veggie juice cleanse.
Historically speaking I’ve not been a huge fan of dietary programs that require drastic change. I did my time with diets like Atkins and South Beach. Those two messed me up for a full year, at least. But lately I have become a big fan of the short-term cleanse. My change of heart has been inspired by a few recent experiences.
Most significantly, I’ve led a few cleanse programs at Cleveland Yoga, and the personal transformations I witnessed were truly inspiring. No joke. People were able to eliminate medications they’d been taking for years, had energy resurgences that were shocking (one participant said, “I was up vaccuming at 5am! and I’m NEVER one to do that!”), and a host of other benefits like clearer skin, better endurance during athletics, less pain, and significantly improved digestion. And most participants were able to sustain improvements while integrating non-cleanse food back into their diets.
Secondly, I was inspired by the documentary Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead. You should check it out. It’s about an unhealthy gentleman suffering from an autoimmune disease who decides to do a 60-day fruit and veggie cleanse. Let’s just say the results were pretty impressive.
Now I would certainly not recommend that everyone jump into a 60 day cleanse. That’s pretty extreme. But 5 days is enough to be do-able for most people and just long enough to really detox the body. So I’m super excited to be partnering with Scott Groth, The Chubby Cook, on monthly 5-day juice cleanses. Scott is preparing the juices so it’ll be easy peasy for all participants. I’ll be providing nutritional support and guidance.
What could your transformaion look like? We’ll be starting the first cleanse on Monday, Jan 9th with an intro meeting preceding on the 6th. Shoot me an email if you’re interested at firstname.lastname@example.org. Hope to see you there!
No Plan Meal Plan helps you eat healthy and tasty meals with less time and stress. It includes 4 recipes per week with shopping list and weekly planner. Because I can always use great recipe ideas, email me your favorite fast and healthy recipe and get entered to win a free 3-month subscription! Email me at email@example.com
I’m super pumped, because my new dinner planning newsletter, No Plan Meal Plan has finally launched. Check it out! There are so many ways this can help you with your dinner-time routine; maybe you want to spend less time planning and be extra-efficient, perhaps you’re looking for fresh new dinner ideas, or maybe you’ve been wanting to eat healthier and reap the benefits of a cleaner diet, but aren’t quiet sure how to get started. NPMP will help you in all of these aspects.
For once I’m encouraging you to put less time and energy into dinner! Go on, check it out! Don’t take my word for it, read the great reviews here.
The picture of a barn raising, a community effort to collectively help out a neighbor seems quaint and out of reach for those of us of a more urban persuasion.
Well, the local food community is a community too and one of our own suffered a calamity this weekend in the form of a assault and robbery.
Michael & Marika Feigenbaum were robbed again this Memorial Day weekend at their bakery, “Lucy’s Sweet Surrender“ on Buckeye Rd. Fortunately, nobody was shot this time, but Michael got roughed up more than a little bit. I saw him Saturday morning about 4 hours after the assault and he was gamely trying to keep up with the orders but was visibly hurting. They lost several days worth of store receipts and the cash box for the day’s farmers markets. While he didn’t mention a figure I’m sure his loss was more than several thousand in cash alone. Money that will take months of effort to recoup. Theirs is not a business with large profit margins.
Michael is a stubborn cuss, from Russian Jewish stock and will, I expect soldier on. Marika is still shaking and I think still not really yet recovered from being shot last year. But this kind of calamity is not only a serious financial hit, but more so an emotional blow. Two violent robberies in 18 months is a bit much, even by Cleveland standards.
“What’s political is also personal. If you believe in something, you should be willing to make sacrifices to support it, even if it’s expensive or inconvenient.” (Russ Parsons, L.A. Times food writer)
What can you do? Well, if you need a loaf of bread, food for a graduation party, office event, family get-together or just because you like quality baked goods consider making a purchase from them at the store on Buckeye or at one of the farmers markets (Shaker Sq. or Crocker Park on Saturdays). If you are already a customer, buy something extra. There is little downside for you because “Lucy’s Sweet Surrender” makes quality stuff (I’m a fool for his poppy seed goodies) . And your support now can make a big difference in gritting them back on track.
You won’t get any splinters in your fingers and you’ll help rebuild their business too.
It’s increasingly rare these days to know where your food is coming from (China?), and almost unheard of to actually communicate with a farmer who puts his hands in the soil for you. But the local food movement has forward momentum, and there are more and more opportunities to visit a local farmer’s market and/or join a CSA (community shared agriculture) program. If you’re wondering what’s in it for you, read on, this is my top 10 list of reasons to buy local this summer.
10) Food tastes better, because it’s fresher.
9) Food has more nutrients, because it’s fresher. And it has less nastiness on it, like chemicals that can cause cancer and interfere with your hormones.
8) Going to pick up your food at the market/CSA stand means more time outside in the fresh summer air, which is a good thing.
7) Meet new people. And people who like good food are fun people to know.
6) Farmers know about a lot of interesting stuff, and they like to share.
5) You’re supporting local jobs, and the local economy, which is good for the whole region.
4) You can take your kids, which is FUN (and lets them burn off some energy)! Especially when you visit a farm. When they start to see how food is grown, they’ll have a whole new appreciation for food, and it’ll be easier to get them to eat their veggies. (Check out the pic- my baby Alena, bonding with farmer Carl and farm dog Casey. She’s not quite old enough to run around in the dirt..but maybe before the summer is over?)
3) Tired of hauling trash out to the curb every week? Buy local and you avoid excess packaging, which means less trash.
2) Try new, local foods that you’ve never even heard of before (purslane, ramps?) and won’t get in the grocery store.
1) Save $$, believe it or not. Buying from the grocery store means paying for packaging, shipping, and handling from who knows how many people. Buy local and you cut all of that nonsense out, which means you’re paying for high quality food and nothing else.
So go for it, check out a farmer’s market and join a CSA. Find one near you here. I’d be willing to bet that if you go once or twice, you’ll get hooked. There really is no better way to spend an hour or two on the weekend.
Cleveland tops another list! We were just ranked the second best city in the country for local food. The study cited our 225 community gardens, 12 farmers markets, community-supported agriculture subscriptions (City Fresh, Blue Pike Farm and others), urban farms, and of course talented chefs and local food procurement (Fresh Fork and others).
What’s interesting about the study is not just that it says Cleveland rocks, but that it describes the incredible potential that urban farming has for the local economy. The study says that a shift in 25% of our food sources, from out-of-state to a local source, could provide up to 27,000 new jobs. That’s putting 1/8 unemployed workers back to work. And of course there’s the accompanying increase in state/local taxe revenue associated with the additional income (estimated at $126 million state/local per year).
This is all super fabulous, but not exactly easy to achieve. To work towards this goal, the study advocates creating a NEO Food Authority. I certainly hope that we can work towards this goal one way or another. A 25% shift would be huge, but so would the benefits. Economic, yes, but also for public health and general societal benefit. We’re talking about eating more fresh local fruits and vegetables and fewer little debbie snack cakes. More green space and fewer abandoned buildings. More gainful employment, less crime.
To support local food, shop at farmer’s markets (find one near you here). When you go out for a night on the town, try to pick restaurants that support local food. Vote with your mouth, so to speak. Your food will taste better anyways
Looking for something to do on Thursday evening (4-7pm)? Why not stop by Cleveland’s coolest urban farm on East 72nd for some fresh local peaches, BBQ, and organic, sustainable farm stand produce? Farmer Carl Skalak prides himself on growing heirloom and unusual varieties of all your favorite veggies – tomatoes, peppers, beans, greens, etc. And, he uses all organic and sustainable farming methods. It’s practically too good to be true. Stop by and you’re sure to find something interesting AND delicious. He also carries local free-range eggs, grass-fed meats, and local fruits and berries from the area’s best producers.
Blue Pike Farm is located on East 72nd, right off 90 at:
900 E. 72nd St
Cleveland, OH 44103
Tomorrow at the Cleveland Foodbank I’ll be doing a free workshop, talking about protein and protein myths. Did you know that much of what you’ve heard in the last 10 years about “healthy” proteins can actually be harmful to you? I’ll bebunk these myths, and provide information on the healthiest sources of protein out there. Cooking demo and tasting included! See my Events calendar for more details.
Seasonal produce is one of the greatest gifts nature provides us. Yet with our global economy that allows us to import fruits and vegetables from around the world and different climates, most of us have lost touch with what eating seasonally even means. I’m not exempt from this – just a couple of years ago, before I really got into holistic health and nutrition, I had no idea what fruits and vegetables were popping out of the ground when. And the prospect of learning seemed a bit overwhelming. But since then I’ve started paying more attention, started my own home garden, joined a CSA, and learned about the many health and environmental benefits of eating with the seasons. And I can say I do feel more in balance as a result. Now when I have cravings for citrus in January and strawberries in June, I feel good about it, because my body seems in touch with what it needs. (And, I don’t feel bad about wanting nothing to do with salad throughout the winter!).
Tomorrow I’ll be speaking at the Cleveland Foodbank about the importance of eating seasonal produce. The Cleveland Foodbank is lucky to receive tremendous amounts of Ohio produce that it then disperses to areas that are in-need. If you’re a member of an agency that works with the Cleveland Foodbank, this workshop is open to you! I’ll talk about what it means to eat seasonally, discuss some of the many health and environmental benefits of eating this way, and provide some recipes along with a cooking demo and tasting. Hope to see you there!
There’s a great article on yahoo today about eggs. The article debunks 4 common myths about eggs – focusing on which factors make eggs healthier vs. which don’t matter. The kind of eggs you buy is important, and myth #3 in the article does a good job explaining why. (Preview – it’s about the types of food the chickens eat, not necessarily organic vs. not). Myth #4 is also great to read, for anyone who’s been seduced by egg substitutes.
I like eating eggs because I do think they’re tasty, healthy, and they’re also FAST. The best eggs I’ve found are at the farmer’s market at Shaker Square. To find the best eggs near you, ask at your local farmer’s market what the chickens have been eating. If they’re allowed to roam the pasture and therefore eat grasses and insects, you’re good to go. Then, when you eat the eggs notice the color of the yolks. They should be a deeper orange than the ones you’ve been buying. This indicates better flavor and nutrition – quite a good deal!