Diana

/Diana Herrington

About Diana Herrington

I am the Founder and Author at Real Food For Life. Have been teaching cooking classes worldwide since 1982. Create original, healthy recipes and menus, which are gluten free and white sugar free. Also, the author of the GREEN means LEAN and Balance Your Body e-books. I turned a debilitating health crisis into a passion for helping others with healthy, sugar free, gluten free eating and cooking.

Enjoy Pancake Day with Delicious Healthy Recipes

By |February 22nd, 2017|

Pancake Day Healthy Recipes! Enjoy the day with a big plate of delicious healthy pancakes recipes dripping with a sweet rich syrup.

Cornmeal, the Comfort Food That is Good for You

By |February 17th, 2017|

Cornmeal is a delicious gluten free grain that has been around for centuries.  So many recipes from grits and polenta to porridge and tortillas.  A common breakfast in Louisiana always includes a dish of grits.

It is made from ground dried corn; when it’s finely ground it is corn flour. The coarser ground corn is cornmeal; it has a little of the husk and germ of the corn kernel.

Has Cancer Fighting Properties

Cornmeal is an excellent source of carotenoids (vitamin A) and is easily absorbed because it has some fat in it which it needs for easier digestion.

“It is easier to digest the carotenoids from milled corn foods than those in carrots and spinach.” ~ Dr. Mario Ferruzzi, Purdue University. Carotenoids act as antioxidants with helping to fight cancer.

The American Diabetes Association recommends cornmeal as a way to increase whole grains in the diet. 

Good Source of Fiber

One cup will give you 36% DV of fiber.

“Dietary fiber that occurs naturally in foods may help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, obesity, and type 2 diabetes.” ~ U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Nutrition: It has iron, zinc, niacin, potassium, phosphorus, magnesium and even has protein and no cholesterol.  See full details at Nutrition Data. 

Trivia

Corn was used as money in the early days in America.

There is white, yellow, and blue cornmeal.

Remove slugs from your garden: place a handful of cornmeal in a jar, and lay it on its side in the garden. Slugs will like the scent, slither in, and die.

Dry, it was used for poultices and cooked it was used for treating diarrhea.

Native Americans began to domesticate cornmeal and it was a staple in their diet starting in 5000 BC.

“Corn Meal! Corn Meal! It Blesses the Body with Healthy Zeal!”
~ Roylin Ld Picou, International Poet

Now let’s eat some cornmeal with these tasty recipes.

Cornmeal Porridge – This is my favourite porridge.  Some call it grits, others polenta or mush. Here is the basic version which can be dressed up however you please. 

Date Walnut Cornmeal Muffins -Gluten free-Vegan  – These simple, yummy muffins are full of healthy ingredients. They are also gluten free. You will be amazed how sweet they are since there is no added sugar! 

Gluten Free and Vegan Cornmeal Pancakes – This recipe is my version of pancakes without the milk or eggs.

All the tasty recipes at Real Food For Life are vegetarian, gluten-free and white sugar-free.  I invite you to check more of them out by browsing the Recipes.

What Stimulates Love More: a Kiss or Chocolate?

By |February 8th, 2017|

Chocolate will give you a bigger buzz than a kiss! This was what a study discovered with couples in long-term relationships.

The study at Mind Lab had 6 couples in their 20s; they wore heart and brain monitors. Each person in the study placed a piece of dark chocolate on their tongue and let it melt without chewing. Later the couples kissed in the way they normally would. What the study found was that when the chocolate melted in the mouth, all areas of the brain were stimulated far more intensely, and the heart beat faster for longer than when they kissed.

“There is no doubt that chocolate beats kissing hands down when it comes to providing a long-lasting body and brain buzz. A buzz that, in many cases, lasted four times as long as the most passionate kiss.” said researcher Dr. David Lewis, formerly of the University of Sussex and now of the Mind Lab.

“In my opinion these scientists have underrated the effects…I’d say chocolate is probably at least 10 times better than any other known form of stimulation in existence. And the only thing better than a bar of chocolate is two bars of chocolate!” – Katharine Arnold, London – BBC Comment

Chocolate is well known for containing a ‘Love Drug’ because it triggers feelings of euphoria, attraction, and excitement, mimicking the brain chemistry of a person in love.

Also, it contains approximately 380 known chemicals, some promote serotonin production which boosts our mood and eases depression. They create a hormone rush, similar to the rush of love making as the pleasure center of the brain is triggered somewhat similarly to the peaks during an orgasm.

“….the taste of chocolate is a sensual pleasure in itself, existing in the same world as sex”
– Sex therapist Dr. Ruth Westheimer.

Aphrodisiac Chocolate

An Aphrodisiac?

It has a reputation of being an aphrodisiac throughout history, going back to the Mayan period from about 250 AD to 900 AD. The Mayans were chocoholics and they highly valued the cacao bean. A man could hire a prostitute for eight to ten cacao beans. Rumour has it that the Aztec emperor Montezuma, known as a hot lover, drank 50 cups of cacao a day before heading off to his harem.

Legendary lover Casanova, the great seducer declared dark chocolate’s sensual pleasure among the world’s best aphrodisiacs, second only to Champagne. He ate it for its aphrodisiac qualities before his conquests to give him the energy he needed

Nonetheless, the actual truth is cacao has never been fully proven to be an aphrodisiac. It does have the chemical composition but in quantities so small that you would need to consume as much as the emperor Montezuma did!

Research has proven that chocolate is a ‘Feel good food’.  It has ingredients to help relax us mentally and physically, bringing a sense of well-being which can promote sexual interest so because it improves mood it can improve sex; it does not need to, strictly speaking, be an aphrodisiac. It is easy enough to understand why chocolate has been branded as a ‘love food’ and associated with sensual pleasure!

Chocolate

Here is a tasty decadent recipe full of healthy ingredients using dark chocolate, because it was used in all of the studies: Cherry Pecan Dark Chocolate Bar 

Learn how to make healthy chocolate in the Healthy Chocolate Project.

Related

French Kisses Give 80 Million Healthy Bacteria

Is Chocolate Good for You?

Simple Nutritious Spinach Salad with Sunflower Seeds

By |February 2nd, 2017|

This spinach salad is super nutritious and with only 2 main ingredients, it is a fast salad to make.

Ingredients:

2 handfuls baby spinach
1/4 cup toasted sunflower seeds
Olive Oil Salad Dressing

Directions:

  1. Put spinach on a plate.
  2. Toss with Olive Oil Salad Dressing to taste
  3. Sprinkle sunflower seeds.
  4. Serve and enjoy.

More spinach recipes:

Oranges and Spinach

Orange Spinach Green Smoothie

Power Salad with Spinach

Spring Cleanse Spinach Salad

Get healthy recipes and tips sent to your mailbox once a week with more information about these foods, subscribe to my newsletter.

You can also learn how to plan and prepare super healthy meals with my
2-5-30 Healthy Diet Online Courses.

Healthy Carrot Salad with Sunflower Seeds

By |February 2nd, 2017|

This carrot salad with black currants and sunflower seeds is especially unique and so tasty. Also, it is filling too.

Ingredients:

carrots, grated
1/4 cup black currants
Few sprigs of cilantro, chopped
1/4 cup sunflower seeds, roasted

Directions:

  1. Put grated carrots into in a wide salad bowl.
  2. Toss with Olive Oil Salad Dressing to taste.
  3. Sprinkle, currants, cilantro, sunflower seeds and sesame seeds.
  4. Serve and enjoy.

More recipes with sunflower seeds:

Toasted Sunflower Seeds

Simple Nutritious Spinach Salad with Sunflower Seeds

Healthy Carrot Salad with Black Currants and Sunflower Seeds

Millet & Buckwheat with Sunflower Seeds

Buckwheat with Sunflower Seeds

Toasted Sunflower Seeds

 

Get healthy tasty vegan gluten free recipes and useful lifestyle tips
sent to you once a week, subscribe to the 
newsletter.

You can also learn how to plan and prepare super healthy meals with my
2-5-30 Healthy Diet Online Courses.

Toasted Sunflower Seeds

By |February 2nd, 2017|

When I make toasted sunflower seeds, I make lots and keep them around for sprinkling on salads, steamed vegetables or on a grain like brown rice or quinoa. This is very simple as long as you stir them consistently.

Ingredients:

2 cups sunflower seeds
Braggs or tamari
Large frying pan
Big wooden spoon 

Directions:

  1. Dry roast the seeds in frying pan until golden brown.
  2. Stir continuously to avoid burning them.
  3. When the seeds start to brown turn the heat down to low, stirring them constantly until the majority of the seeds are a light to medium golden brown or to your preference.
  4. Remove pan from heat and take the seeds out right away to stop them from browning. 
  5. Put them in a bowl.
  6. Spray with Braggs or sprinkle with tamari.

More recipes for you: 

Healthy Carrot Salad with Black Currants and Sunflower Seeds

Millet & Buckwheat with Sunflower Seeds

Buckwheat with Sunflower Seeds

Get healthy tasty vegan gluten free recipes and useful lifestyle tips
sent to you once a week, subscribe to the 
newsletter.

You can also learn how to plan and prepare super healthy meals with my
2-5-30 Healthy Diet Online Courses.

Pomegranate Juice

By |January 20th, 2017|

I love pomegranate juice and decided to make it in a blender rather than a juicer for two reason. This is because it is easier but mostly because when the seeds are totally broken down they add a bitterness to the juice.

Ingredients:

1 cup pomegranate seeds
1/2 cup clean water

Directions:

  1. After washing the pomegranate, cut the crown portion on top. Cut through the outer skin from the top to the bottom on two sides thinly, now tear the fruit into half and remove the seeds from it.
  2. Put 1 cup pomegranate seeds into a blender with 1/2 cup water.
  3. Do not put on to blend, start by pushing the pulse button a few times; this will help the outside part of the seeds to release their juice.
  4. Best not to blend it because when the seeds break, the juice turns bitter.
  5. Once you have the juice out of the seeds, use a strainer to sieve the juice out of the pulp.
  6. Use a big spoon to press pulp to extract as much juice as possible.
  7. Discard the remaining pulp and seeds (or mix some salt with it and enjoy it alone).
  8. Drink and enjoy right away immediately to get as many nutrients as you can.

Here are a couple of very yummy recipes for you too.

Creamy Pomegranate Smoothie

Quinoa with Pomegranate and Cashews

Quinoa with Pomegranate and Cashews

By |January 20th, 2017|

This is a very filling meal with the addition of pomegranate and cashews creating an exotic delicious dish. The good news is that it is exceptionally easy to make in minutes.

Ingredients:

1 cup cooked red quinoa or any colour of quinoa
Handful of pomegranate seeds
Handful of roasted cashews
Few fresh mint leaves (optional)

Directions:

Simply mix all ingredients together and enjoy.

More recipes with pomegranate seeds and also quinoa:

Pomegranate Juice

Creamy Pomegranate Smoothie

Quinoa Arugula Salad

Deluxe Quinoa Pudding (vegan & gluten free)

Creamy Pomegranate Smoothie

By |January 20th, 2017|

This pomegranate smoothie is a simple delicious way to get a abundance of nutrients into our diet. The addition of coconut milk and chia seeds creating a creamy drink full of health benefits.  And it is very easy to make.

Ingredients:

1 cup pomegranate seeds
1/2 cup coconut milk
1 tablespoon chia seeds

Directions:

  1. Place all the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.
  2. Enjoy this delicious healthy smoothie.

More recipes with pomegranate seeds:

Pomegranate Juice

Quinoa with Pomegranate and Cashews

Fabulous Delicious Nutritious Figs

By |January 11th, 2017|

Fresh juicy exotic figs are delicious and are also powerfoods that have been around since 8,000 BC. Dried figs are tasty too and filled with even more nutrients than the fresh ones.

The Middle East has thrived on figs and has used them in their cooking and to help heal many health concerns.

“Eat it as it cures various diseases among which are Piles, Gout and Arthritis” ~ Abu Darda, companion of Rasulullah 

5 Health Benefits of Figs 

  1. Reliefs Sore Throats: The fig fruit and leaves have been to relieve sore throats. A Korean study found that fig leaves destroyed oral bacteria.
  2. Helps with Weight loss:  Being high in fiber figs will keep you regular and can help with weight management.
  3. Reduces Cancer:
  • The phytochemicals in figs were found in one study to suppress cancer cell production.
  • The white fig dottato was found in another study to have unique cancer-fighting activity on melanoma cells. The researchers found this to give a new perspective in the development fig formulations being helpful in treating non-melanoma skin cancers.
  • Fresh fig “latex” has been found to be an anticancer substance with no adverse effects on the normal cells. It was also found that the latex in figs, dried or fresh, are helpful in treating stomach cancer according to research at Mazandaran University of Medical Sciences in Iran.

4. Lower High Blood Pressure: They are a good source of potassium, which helps to control blood pressure. “when people have an increased intake of potassium, a high intake of sodium is not associated with a high BP” stated in Brazilian Journal of Medical and Biological Research.

5. Alkaline Forming: They are highly alkaline, thus help to keep the body in balance with the high acidic diet most people consume.

And a few more health benefits:

A good traditional medicine for the treatment of anemia, cancer, diabetes, leprosy, liver diseases, paralysis, skin diseases, and ulcers according to the conclusion posted in the
US National Library of Medicine
.

Also, worldwide traditional medicine has used the fig as a poultices on tumors, warts, and wounds.

Fig Nutrition:

They are full of nutrients. They are a good source of essential minerals (calcium, cooper, magnesium, manganese and potassium) and vitamins such as K and B6.  Also, they have almost 5 grams of dietary fiber per serving and are sodium free, fat and cholesterol free. To learn more go to Fig Nutrition.

Figs according to a study, are dense in phenolic antioxidants.  Figs and dried plums had the highest nutrient score among dried fruits.

dried fig has a higher nutritional value then a fresh one.  One dried fig contains almost as much calcium as an egg.

Please Note: Figs contain high levels of oxalates and may be a concern. When you eat too many they can be a laxative creating diarrhea.  Also, they are high in sugar and you know what that means, do not eat too many.

“Figs, if seen in dreams, denote wealth and prosperity.” ~ Muhammad Ibn Sirin, Muslim mystic in the 8th century.

Fig Trivia

  • The fig tree is a symbol of abundance and fertility.
  • Fig tree leaves are dried and used in perfume and potpourri as they have a pleasant, woodsy-green fragrance.
  • The fig is often mentioned as a sign of peace and prosperity in the Bible.
  • The fig blossom is inside of the fruit; there are no blossoms on the tree! There are many tiny flowers producing crunchy little edible seeds giving figs their unique texture.
  • Adam and Eve clad themselves with fig leaves (Genesis 3:7) after eating the “forbidden fruit” from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil.

History:

There is evidence of figs […]

Sweet Hazelnut Balls

By |December 29th, 2016|

These hazelnut balls are sweetly delicious made with healthy ingredients making them full of nutrients.

Ingredients: 

1 cup rice syrup
1 cup hazelnut butter
1 cup oatmeal
½ cup toasted sunflower seeds
½ cup toasted hazelnuts, chopped finely
½ coconut fine flakes
½ cup toasted and finely chopped hazelnuts for rolling them in

Directions:

  1. Blend rice syrup and hazelnut butter.
  2. Mix in remaining ingredients except for 1/2 cup hazelnuts.
  3. Form into 1 inch balls and roll in hazelnuts.

Get healthy tasty vegan gluten free recipes and useful lifestyle tips sent to you
once a week, subscribe to the 
newsletter.

You can also learn how to plan and prepare super healthy meals with my
2-5-30 Healthy Diet Online Courses.

Papaya Pudding

By |December 20th, 2016|

This yummy papaya pudding is a very easy to make for dessert and super nutritious too.

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups papaya, chopped +1/2 cup extra
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup cashew nuts (soaked for about 4 hours)
1/2 Tbsp chia seeds
1/4 cup coconut milk
Few drops stevia or
1 tsp honey

Directions:

1. Blend the papaya in a blender.
2. Add the nuts, chia seeds, honey, coconut milk and vanilla, blend until creamy.
3. Put in the refrigerator for 20 to 40 minutest to thicken.
4. Now simply mix the half cup of chopped papaya into the pudding.

Get healthy tasty vegan gluten free recipes and useful lifestyle tips sent to you once a week, subscribe to the newsletter.

You can also learn how to plan and prepare super healthy meals with my
2-5-30 Healthy Diet Online Courses.