Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Tender Grass-fed Beef Meatballs and Life

Tender Grass-fed Meatballs over
avocado slaw. Would have been
great with fresh pico de gallo.
In my mind, meatballs are a comfort food. I love the heartiness of them when served with roasted vegetables. Serve these up with predominantly low carbohydrate vegetables to promote a healthy digestion. There are many low carbohydrate vegetables, including: asparagus, bell pepper, broccoli, garlic, green beens, mushrooms, okra, onion, zucchini, and yellow squash. 

Contrary to popular belief, red meat and fat are not the evil artery cloggers they are depicted to be. If you look deeply into nutrition research without bias, you will find that healthy fats and animals proteins do not lead to heart disease, diabetes, or depression.  Yet, a diet high in carbohydrates has been linked to all of the diseases above and many others. Also, eating a diet high in animal protein and saturated fats does not elevate your blood cholesterol levels. Eating fat does not elevate your blood sugar or insulin levels leading to increased blood triglycerides and therefore cholesterol. Carbohydrates, however, due to their effect on blood sugar and triglycerides do increase your cholesterol levels. 

So quit depriving your body of meat if you're craving it. I felt guilty for a couple of years because I was a meat eating yoga teacher. When in reality, meat is a natural and healthy part of the diet. Over the years, I've experimented with many different types of eating. I've discovered a diet abundant in healthy sources of fat and protein with a moderate-to-low carbohydrate intake (less than 150g) suits my body the best. Food is nourishment which sustains life. If the food we eat is doing us harm... why suffer? Better to make food choices that honor the body you have been given and create the least suffering. 

This past January, I attended a Bhakti Yoga workshop in Asheville.  The teacher, Michael, taught us about the Buddhist four noble truths and views on suffering. I love how straight forward and matter of fact this information was. I think it relates to our entire experience of life with our relationships, bodies, and food. 

Types of Suffering:

1 Piece of Red Velvet Cake
contains 57g or 14.25
 teaspoons of sugar. As little
as 2-3 teaspoons will elevate
your blood sugar for hours.
Leading to elevated blood
triglycerides, fatigue, and
possibly fat storage.
1.  Suffering of Suffering: it's difficult in the beginning, difficult in the middle, but okay when it ends. May relate to pain, fear, or mental distress. For example: Going through a breakup. It's hard when it first happens, painful when you're finding your way, and brings happiness once you've healed. 
2. Suffering of Change: comes from when the pleasure ends. For example: Drinking a sugar filled beverage. It's all great while you have that tasty beverage in your hands but when you've finished it off your body suffers. You feel thirsty, tired, groggy and may experience unpleasant gastrointestinal symptoms for a few hours after. 
3. All Pervasive Suffering: more complicated because it refers the fact that throughout our lives there is always a potential for us to experience some kind of suffering. This type of suffering is not of your conscious mind. On your journey towards enlightenment, you'll have to do some soul searching along the way to clear this kind of suffering. 
May you live and eat in a way that honors your highest good.

Okay, back to the meatballs. Here is a quick and delicious recipe:

Candida Diet, Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Paleo


1 lb. 100% grass-fed ground beef
Cumin is in the top 20
of the healthiest spices.
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 slices nitrite and nitrate free bacon
1/2 yellow onion, minced
1/2 tsp. paprika
1/2 tsp. cumin
dash cayenne pepper
1 tsp. dried salt-free herb blend
sea salt and black pepper


1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease baking sheet with coconut oil.  

2. Mix all ingredients thoroughly in a bowl. Form into medium sized meatballs and place on baking sheet. Should form 12 meatballs.
3. Bake for 25 minutes until thoroughly cooked.  Let rest for 3-4 minutes before serving. 
*Photos and recipe by Keri Rogers.

Keri is an internationally Registered Yoga Teacher, Creator of Yoga Props, and Nutrition/Wellness Educator.  She owns and operates BAYA Wellness, LLC offering Yoga and Nutrition Education Services.  Keri teachers both privately and publicly around the Greenville area offering on-going classes and special events.  Her path as a nutritionist is all about making healthy living approachable... she teaches the components of healthy cooking, eating, and thinking while also offering specialized services like menu planning.  Healthy living is about the whole pictures of wellness... find your path to living well.

BAYA... Be As You Are!
Contact for details: Website or 864-430-1275

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Chicken A La King (& Queen)

This recipe is a guest post by Chef Tanner.  It features a meal I've heard him talk about since I've known him.  His step-dad Bill used to eat Chicken A La King out of the can and Tanner grew up loving it.  One of Tan's missions as a chef is to make healthier gourmet versions of comfort food that caters to a gluten-free and dairy-free diet.  So here you have it...

Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free

2 tbl. grape seed oil
2 boneless skinless raw chicken breasts, cubed
1 tbl. cajun seasoning
1 green bell pepper, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1/2 red onion, diced
1 can coconut milk
2 tbl. arrowroot powder**
1 tbl. water or more as needed
4 slices gluten-free bread, toasted

1. Sprinkle cajun seasoning over the chicken. Heat oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken and cook until browned. Approximately 3-5 minutes.  Remove chicken and set aside.
2. Add onions and bell peppers to skillet.  Saute until onions are translucent and still have a slight crunch.
3.  In a medium bowl, add arrowroot powder and water whisk together to make a paste.  Also known as a slurry, this will be used to thicken the coconut milk.
4.  Add chicken to the veggies then pour coconut milk over the top. Bring to a boil.
5. Once it comes to a boil, whisk in the slurry reduce heat to low and simmer uncovered for 5 minutes. The sauce should reach the consistency of gravy. If two watery, make another slurry with arrowroot powder and add to reach desired thickness.
6. Add cajun seasoning, sea salt and fresh black pepper to taste. Served over gluten-free bread.
*Recipe and photos by Tanner Marino.
**Arrowroot powder is a non-genetically modified food thickener. It's a healthier alternative to corn starch.  It is available at most health food stores where the baking supplies are.  

Tanner Marino is a Chef and local foods enthusiast in Greenville, SC.  He has a passion for using simple quality ingredients and transforming them into artfully prepared delicious creations. Tanner is currently available for hire as a private chef.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Yoga Provides Many Awesome Benefits

Inversions have a vast
array of healing benefits.
From anti-aging to
reducing depression.

Yoga is an ancient form of exercise that has been around for more than 5,000 years.  Millions of Americans enjoy the health benefits of yoga.  There are many different styles of yoga.  Some are more relaxing and some provide more activity, but all will help you to become stronger, more flexible and have better balance.  Yoga will also help you to be calmer, have more energy and become more centered.  Dr. Glen Axelrod of St. Joseph’s Hospital and Health Center even claims, “Many professional athletic teams use yoga as an integral part of their training” 
Restorative yoga postures are
particularly helpful in relieving
stress and anxiety.

You can also reduce your blood pressure and heart rate by practicing yoga. You may also start to see a newfound confidence in yourself as you begin to master the yoga poses.

Yoga works to increase your flexibility by stretching your muscles. When you stretch during yoga, your muscles release lactic acid.  This may help relieve stiffness and provide relief to painful joints.  Yoga also stretches out your tendons and ligaments.  Improvements in flexibility will be noticed in a very short period of time.  Yoga has been proven to provide significant relief for low back pain by a study that was conducted by the Veterans Administration and the University of California, San Diego.  

You will also increase your strength when you practice yoga.  Yoga pose can help to build both upper and lower body strength.  You will also build your core strength with most yoga poses.  A stronger core will allow you to stand taller and look leaner.  

Yoga is a wonderful exercise in relaxation for the stressed lives we lead today. During yoga you can practice meditation, which will help quiet your mind and ease your stress.  You may also practice deep breathing while doing yoga exercises.  This will help to calm your mind.
Researched performed at Ohio State University has proven that recovery from stress is much faster in women who do hatha yoga.

Yoga has many health benefits.  Just talk to anyone who does yoga and they will tell you how much it has improved their flexibility, strengthened their muscles, provided joint relief and calmed their mind.  Try it yourself and you will begin to experience all the benefits that yoga has to offer.

Guest Post by Carolyn Fallon:
Carolyn Fallon is a 20-something year old with a passion for life, fitness and overall well being.  She is an avid cycler, golfer and has known to bust some serious moves on the dance floor.  Check out Carolyn’s blog at!
*Pictures by Keri Rogers.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

October Schedule

Upcoming Workshop:

Yoga and Nutrition: Boost Your Energy Levels Naturally $20
As fall and darkness settle in our energy levels drop.  Learn how to naturally stimulate your energy levels with yoga and healthy eating.Sunday, Nov. 11, 2012 from 4-6pm at Greenville Yoga's Augusta Rd location

Public Classes:

5:45-7pm Mindful Flow Yoga $10 at Greenville Yoga Studio
- Augusta Rd location

5:45-7pm Mindful Flow Yoga $10 at Greenville Yoga Studio
- Augusta Rd location

2-3:30pm* Mindful Flow Yoga $10 at Greenville Yoga Studio
- Augusta Rd location

See details at the following websites:  BAYA Wellness or Greenville Yoga.  

Private Yoga Classes and Nutrition:

Private Classes offered in a variety of locations around the Greenville area for individuals, couples, families, businesses, etc.  Nutrition, Wellness, and Yoga education consultations are available as well see website for details (