Monthly Archives: May 2014

Coconut Ginger Oatmeal Raison Cookies


Oatmeal isn’t just for breakfast. Oatmeal is actually pretty versatile and can be added into smoothies and used in baking recipes too. These cookies have NO DAIRY, NO EGGS, and NO REFINED SUGAR. They are easy to make and come out nicely from the oven with the added shredded coconut. Their not only delicious but their loaded with fiber, potassium and exploding with spicy flavors!


You can do your heart a lot of good by eating more oatmeal. Oatmeal is known for a phytonutrient called Beta-Glucan which can reduce the risk of heart disease. It can boost the immune system and lower blood sugar spikes in diabetics. Just one serving each day can reduce high LDL levels (bad cholesterol) by 8-23%!

Cook time: 25 minutes. Yields: 12-15 cookies

Vegan Ingredients:

•3 bananas, ripened
•1 1/2 cups rolled oats
•1/3 cup brown rice flour
•1 cup raisins
•1/2 cup shredded coconut, dried
•2 teaspoons Chinese 5 spice
•2 teaspoons ginger powder
•1 teaspoon vanilla extract
•1 squeeze bottle raw honey

Batter and Baking

1. Place bananas into a mixing bowl. Smash and mix them until they are completely mashed.
2. Next, mix in the ginger powder, Chinese 5 spice, and vanilla extract.
3. Then mix in rolled oats very well and then add the flour until completely blended. Now last but not least, mix in the raisins and shredded coconut.
4. On 2 sprayed cookie sheets, spread out cookies with about 2 tablespoons of batter for each cookie.
5. Form the cookies by flattening and rounding them with a fork.
6. Bake for about 20 minutes at 400 degrees. Their done when just the edges of the cookies start to turn golden brown.
7. Use a spatula to remove them onto a plate. For a little extra sweetness, lightly drizzle cookies with honey after removing.

by Lupita Ronquillo, holistic nutrition writer

Cucumber Lime Guacamole


Avocados too fattening?
Most of us rave about Mexican food but hate the fat that comes with it, right? Most traditionally made Mexican food and restaurants do come with a drawback of preparing ingredients with lard and oils high in trans fats. Guacamole, if prepared healthfully, isn’t one of them.

Avocados do have fat but they contain the kind we need. Yes, we actually need fat, to help us absorb vitamins and prevent deficiencies, keep our hair and skin healthy, control cravings, and keep us satiated. Avocados also offer a chock-full of nutrients including fiber, vitamin B6, C, E, K, folate, potassium, and super healthy omega-3 fatty acids to name a few.

Considering the amount of fat avocados contain, their actually very good for the heart. Oleic, avocado’s primary fatty acid along with the other omega 3’s make this super food a winner for heart health. This fruit (fruits have seeds) has been proven to stop inflammation, so its an anti-inflammatory. A recent study found that persin,  a natural compound found in avocado, slowed breast cancer growth by 99% and killed over 95% of the cancer cells!

When peeling avocados, make sure to include the greenest part of avocado, which is the flesh closest to the peel as shown below. Critical health promoting carotenoids are in greater concentration there so scrape out everything touching the skin before discarding. 



  • 1 large ripe Avocado
  • 1/4 cup Grape Tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/2 large Cucumber, peeled, seeded, and chopped
  • 1 medium Jalapeno, seeded and minced
  • 1 small Lime, juiced
  • 1 clove Garlic, minced
  • 1/3 bunch Cilantro, minced
  • Pinch of pink or sea salt to taste


  1. Smash up the avocado in the bowl you plan to serve it in with a fork until its pretty smooth. You can leave some chunks if you prefer it that way. If your avocado was small to medium then use 2.
  2. Mix in the lime juice and your desired pinch of salt and pepper to taste. Himalayan pink salt is whole and adds minerals.
  3. Prepare all other ingredients on a cutting board, tomatoes, cucumber, radish, jalapeno, garlic, and cilantro.
  4.  Fold in all ingredients in the avocado bowl until the avocado smothers everything. Your done!
  5. Serve as a healthy dip with organic baked corn chips or better yet, vegetable sticks! Nutrition tip: Avocados increases the absorption of  carotenoids found in carrots by a whopping 200-400%! So slice up those carrot sticks to dip them in!
  6. If you are waiting to serve others, cover it with plastic wrap directly on the surface of the guacamole to prevent oxidation reaching inside the bowl. Refrigerate until ready. 

Yield: Fills a bowl for about 4 people. For a more spicier guacamole, add some of the seeds in. Otherwise this recipe is mild.

References for Avocados:
 The Worlds Healthies Foods 

Great Reasons To Love Grapefruit!

my grapefruit1

The Enduring Grapefruit Diet

Most of us are well aware of grapefruit’s weight loss and metabolism boosting benefits. The popularity of the Grapefruit Diet dating back from the1930’s is how and when this association became fixed. Through the decades, the grapefruit diet became reinvented under new names, such as The Hollywood Diet, Mayo Clinic Diet, Indian River Grapefruit Diet, all the while keeping its popular principle of eating grapefruit before each meal. Today, as a result of these reinvented versions, the grapefruit is for certain now branded a “get skinny food” associated with benefits primarily for losing weight. Consequently, the grapefruit’s other superior benefits have likely been unheard of or forgotten in the midst of proven and constant weight loss popularity.

Since the 1930’s, grapefruit has proven to be a super food in other ways. Besides helping to curb the appetite and shed unwanted weight, did you know it can help fight depression with its aroma? That it can lower the “bad” levels of cholesterol according to a Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry study? Grapefruit can also help reduce the severity of inflammatory conditions, such as asthma, rheumatoid and osteoarthritis as well as improving our cardiovascular health. Furthermore, it has been shown to help prevent lung and colon cancer.

Getting to Know the Grapefruit

A few facts about grapefruit you probably never knew…
•Only 4 states in the U.S. commercially grow grapefruit, California, Arizona, Texas and Florida where warmer climates exists.
•For almost 20 years, the red grapefruit has been the official state fruit of Texas.
•Its name sprung from the way the grapefruit grows, in clusters on trees resembling grapes on the vine.
•Grapefruit trees can produce up to 40 years!
•Grapefruit season is from winter through early spring.
•Grapefruit can last for up to 3 weeks in your refrigerator.

Vitamin C Boost

Grapefruits are very high in vitamin C. Vitamin C is an immune booster and can help to combat and prevent the common cold among other things that attack our health. Getting enough vitamin C can help heal wounds faster such as from cuts, burns, surgery, and even help heal broken bones! Vitamin C works as an antioxidant and can fight free radical damage to our cells. It can lower blood pressure and prevent hypertension. Vitamin C can also scrub away dangerous levels of lead in the body, especially helpful in children. Just one half of a grapefruit provides over 70% of the RDA for valuable vitamin C!


Grapefruit can help fight fatigue, especially in the winter months when our activities tend to wind down with the colder season. Grapefruit are at their peak during the winter, which is the perfect time to help burn those excess calories and balance out those heavier winter meals we’re surrounded with during the holidays. This tangy sweet super fruit is also great for jump starting a sluggish metabolism and can boost our energy levels with just the right amount of natural sugar. Grapefruits are bursting with nutrition and phytonutrients, including the energy producing B vitamins to help us while exercising and improve our athletic performance.

Low Sugar

Most citrus fruits are high in natural sugars but grapefruits are not. They can help diabetics keep their glycemic index low. Grapefruits are also lower in carbohydrates than most other fruits. For diabetics, this is important because they not only need to keep track of their sugar, but also to check their intake carbs. One half grapefruit contains less than half of the carbs found in a banana or pear. Furthermore, they offer a good source of soluble fiber which can be another benefit for diabetics. Getting more soluble fiber can assist in keeping sugar levels stabilized because fiber helps keep carbohydrates from being absorbed too quickly in the bloodstream. To boot, grapefruits contain a rich source of the trace mineral, chromium which studies have shown lowers blood sugar levels by as much as 50%, a bonus if your watching sugar levels.

grapefruit smoothie

Grapefruit Smoothie! Blend 1 peeled grapefruit with 1 frozen banana until smooth.


As we just mentioned, grapefruits are high in fiber! Sound surprising for a citrus fruit? What most people don’t realize about grapefruit and other citrus is you can easily get a good serving of fiber from the pectin, the stringy white membrane surrounding each juicy piece. As refreshing and delicious as it sounds, juicing grapefruit will not provide much of that fiber. If your going to count fiber from eating grapefruit, eat as much of the inside as you can, including the white inner layer found under the skin. The white pith is also full of cancer fighting antioxidants. If you don’t like eating the stringy pectin, which I presume most don’t, you can blend the whole grapefruit in a smoothie with other fruits and vegetables to yield that fiber. A smoothie recipe with banana is shown above.

Good Skin

If your interested in fighting the signs of aging, grapefruit can provide amazing skin benefits from the inside out. How? First, the grapefruit’s generous supply of vitamin C can stimulate collagen production in aging skin, an exciting bonus in fighting unwanted wrinkles. Second, grapefruits are rich in lycopene which can help protect the skin from UV damage. By the time we are in our 40’s, we can usually start to see skin damage caused by the sun from earlier years. Adding grapefruit to our diet can add a layer of defense to aging skin with this important phytonutrient. Thirdly, lycopene also helps to protect the skin against environmental damage by fighting free radicals from the inside out. Did you know that grapefruit can work topically as well? Simply applying it directly to the skin can calm, firm and clear the skin. It can even work to remedy skin problems such as dry skin, acne, rashes and psoriasis!
Grapefruit Cautions with Prescriptions

Are you on medications? Before loading up on grapefruits, keep in mind certain compounds found in grapefruit can actually reduce breaking down some cholesterol lowering medicines leading to dangerous build up in the bloodstream! Just a single glass of grapefruit juice could reduce the body’s natural ability to metabolize “statins” by up to 47 percent, according to the Harvard Medical School Family Health Guide. Statins found to react with grapefruit juice include Atorvastatin, Simvastatin and Lovastatin prescription drugs. Grapefruit juice can contribute to dangerous side effects with other medicines too. Some of these are calcium channel blockers, birth control pills, antidepressants, some antivirals, anti-anxiety medicine and other psychiatric drugs. To learn more about these dangers, listen in on Donnica Moore, M.D. Always check with your doctor if your on any medication before loading up on grapefruit.

Best way to enjoy grapefruit

♥ Juicing Grapefruit
♥ Grapefruit Limeade
♥ Grapefruit Infused Water
♥ Grapefruit Smoothie
♥ Grapefruit Sorbet
♥ Grapefruit Marinade
♥ Grapefruit Salad
♥ Grapefruit Salsa
♥ Grapefruit Popsicles
♥ Grapefruit Salad Dressing
♥ Simply raw and fresh

by Lupita Ronquillo, holistic nutrition writer © 2013

Asparagus Linguini with Bell Pepper Sauce


Asparagus: A Powerhouse of Nutrition

This dish is loaded with nutritionally packed veggies such as broccoli, mushrooms, onions and asparagus. Add in a sauce made with lycopene rich tomatoes and antioxidant rich bell peppers, you are sure to be satisfied! Asparagus is one of the best vegetables for a good source of protein. It is one of the first veggies to emerge in spring and is least likely to be contaminated with pesticide residues. It contains the most folate of any vegetable making them one of the healthiest foods to eat. Asparagus is also full of vision supporting vitamin A and is a good source of vitamin C, K and potassium. Its one of the best vegetables for anti-aging because most of its nutrients stay unharmed even after cooked. Glutathione found in them can minimize skin damage from sun exposure.

Healthy Ingredients

  • 1/3 box gluten free linguini (or preferred pasta)
  • 1 bunch asparagus, cut in 1 inch pieces
  • 1 small head broccoli, chopped
  • 1 cup mushrooms, cut into pieces
  • 1/2 onion, sliced long
  • 2 bell peppers, yellow and red, cut long
  • 1 cup tomato sauce, Organic Bertolli Tomato & Basil
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 heaping tbsp garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp pink salt
  • 1 large deep dish pan
  • 1 medium sauce pan
  • 1 comal
  • Prep time: 15 min
  • Cook time: 30 min
  • Ready in: 45 min
  • Yields: Approximately 4-6 servings

Easy Instructions

  1. While washing and cutting all vegetables, bring medium sized saucepan with water and salt to boil.
  2. On medium high heat, stir fry asparagus and broccoli with olive oil. After 5 minutes, add onions. Then add mushrooms. Stir often to cook evenly.
  3. While vegetables are cooking, add linguini to boiling water.
  4. Lightly roast bell peppers on a cast iron griddle, also known as a “comal.” This type of cookware is typically used in Mexico and Central America to cook tortillas and to sear food. Roast for about 3-5 minutes.
  5. By now, the vegetables should be done so lower the heat to warm and cover to keep moist. Once linguini is done, drain water and add to vegetables.
  6. Add tomato sauce and roasted bell peppers into the blender. Blend on high for about 2 minutes until smooth.
  7. Add bell pepper sauce in with the linguini and vegetables. Bring everything back to medium heat for 5 minutes. Your done!

Roasting Bell Peppers

Roasting bell peppers adds a very distinct flavor in dishes. There are many ways to roast bell peppers but for this recipe I made it simple. If you want a more HP3robust flavor, simply roast peppers before cutting them on all sides for about 8-10 minutes with medium high heat. Remove and let cool. Next, peel the skin and seeds off and cut into slices. Add them into the blender with the tomato sauce and blend.

Maximizing Nutrients

High heat cooking can damage vitamin C and phytonutrients in bell peppers. In a recent study from Turkey, grilling bell peppers after 8 minutes destroyed 40% of the flavonoid luteolin. To preserve as many nutrients as possible, use a lower heat for a very short period of time or avoid roasting them all together.

  1. asparagus VH2

    Hope you enjoy this as much as we do!

    by Lupita Ronquillo, holistic nutrition writer

Mango Lime Vegan Ice Cream!

coconut mango lime ice cream1

Can there be such a thing as ice cream that’s actually good for you? Absolutely! This raw vegan homemade recipe is 100% dairy free and has only 4 ingredients. It has all the texture and flavor of real ice cream and tastes so light and creamy you will never know the difference! Recipes like this definitely make cheating on a healthy diet a thing of the past and best of all its kid tested and mother approved, a healthy treat for kids any day!!
2 large ripe mangoes, cut in squaresMango Icecream
2 large bananas, cut in chunks
1- 6 ounce cup of plain coconut yogurt (SO Delicious brand is great!)
Juice from 1 lime

~Freeze mango and bananas in a sealed container for 5 hours or overnight.
~Separate the frozen chunks (very easily done).

~Next, add lime juice into the blender first to assist with moving the ingredients more smoothly. 

~Add by layering the frozen fruit and coconut yogurt into the blender as you would a parfait. This also helps the blending process. Blend for about 2 minutes or until all the chunks are smooth. Depending on the power of your blender, you may need to stop and push down ingredients with a spoon to keep things moving.

~Serve as desired and add a dash of chili powder for a slightly spicy kick! This recipe will refreeze nicely and keeps its nice “ice cream” texture.

Makes about 3-4 delicious servings!  🙂
coconut mango lime ice cream 22VH