June 4, 2018 - 5 comments

Baked Falafel

PREP: 1hr 15min (includes 60 min soak time) TOTAL: 1hr 45min SERVINGS: 14 falafel balls

Ingredients

  •    2 to 4 tablespoons olive oil
  •    1 cup dried/uncooked/raw chickpeas, rinsed, picked over and soaked for at least one hour and up to overnight (do not attempt this recipe with canned chickpeas!)
  •    1/3 cup chopped red onion (about 1/4th of a medium red onion, chopped)
  •    1/2 cup fresh parsley leaves
  •    1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves
  •    3 garlic cloves, minced
  •    1/4 teaspoon ground cumin

Instructions

1.      With an oven rack in the middle position, preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Coat a large, rimmed baking sheet or large cast iron skillet with 2 to 4 tablespoons olive oil (use more olive oil for more of a fried effect. I couldn’t fit all of the falafel into my 12-inch skillet so I used my 8-inch skillet as well, into which I poured in 1 teaspoon of olive oil).

2.     In a food processor, combine the soaked and drained chickpeas, red onion, parsley, cilantro, 2 tablespoons olive oil, garlic, cumin, cinnamon, salt and pepper. Process until smooth, about 1 minute.

3.     Using your hands, scoop out about 2 tablespoons of the mixture at a time. Shape the falafel into small patties, about 2 inches wide and ½ inch thick. Place each falafel on your oiled pan or skillet.

4.     Bake for 13 minutes, then remove the falafel from the oven and carefully flip each one. Return the pan(s) to the oven for another 13 to 15 minutes, until the falafels are lightly browned on both sides.

Recipe Notes

Adapted from The America’s Test Kitchen Healthy Family Cookbook.

  •        Do not substitute canned chickpeas for dried chickpeas here! I made that mistake once and ended up with sad falafel pancakes.
  •        Although I haven’t tried it, the original recipe notes that the uncooked falafel patties can be refrigerated on a parchment-lined baking sheet, wrapped tightly in plastic wrap, for up to 2 hours before baking.
  •        I’ve found that falafel freezes well, too. It might be a little less crisp after defrosting but it is still very good!

May 3, 2018 - 6 comments

Ketogenic Fat Balls

Ketogenic Fat Balls

PREP Time: 15 minutes, TOTAL Time: 15 minutes, SERVINGS: 16 balls

Ingredients

  • 1.5 cups raw nuts see note*
  • 1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1/3 cup nut or seed butter of choice see note**
  • 1/4 cup cacao nibs optional
  • 2 scoops Vital Proteins Marine Collagen
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil melted and cooled
  • 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup see note***
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3 tablespoons cold water
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt

Instructions

  1. Add the raw nuts to food processor and process until finely chopped. Add the remaining ingredients to the food processor and process until a thick paste has formed. The dough should be sticky.
  2. Roll the fat ball mixture into 16 to 20 balls. Store in a zip lock bag in the refrigerator or freezer (balls thaw quickly, so I store mine in the freezer).

Recipe Notes

*Suggested 1 cup raw almonds and ½ cup macadamia nuts, but any combination works.

**If you keep a paleo diet, use sunflower butter and avoid using peanut butter

***Use a zero-sugar sweetener such as Erythritol, monk fruit sweetener, or xylitol to make these a completely sugar-free ball for a ketogenic diet. If a ketogenic diet isn’t the goal, increase the amount of pure maple syrup to up to 5 tablespoons for a sweeter ball.

February 22, 2018 - 1,062 comments

2018: The Year of the (Earth) Dog

Traditional Chinese Medicine (including Acupuncture) share roots with traditional Chinese philosophy and astrology, including the Yin-Yang philosophy, the theory of the 5 elements,  and Confucianism ethical concepts and practices.

February 16, 2018 marked the start of the Chinese New Year.

2018 is a Year of the Dog. In Chinese astrology, each year is related to a Chinese zodiac animal according to the 12-year cycle. 

Years of the Dog include 1934, 1946, 1958, 1970, 1982, 1994, 2006, 2018, and 2030... The Dog occupies the eleventh position in the Chinese zodiac, after the Rooster, and before the Pig.

If you're born in a Dog year, you're a Dog, and the following are deemed lucky for you:

  • Lucky numbers: 3, 4, 9
  • Lucky colors: red, green, and purple
  • Lucky flowers: rose, cymbidium orchids

More specifically, 2018 is an Earth Dog Year.In Chinese element theory, each zodiac sign is associated with one of the five elements: Gold (Metal), Wood, Water, Fire, and Earth. For example, a Wood Dog comes once in a 60-year cycle.

It is theorized that a person's characteristics are decided by their birth year's zodiac animal sign and element. So there are five types of Dogs, each with different characteristics:

Combining the 12-zodiac cycle and the 5-element cycle, people show diverse traits and horoscope. 

Types Years of Birth Personality Traits
Wood Dog 1934, 1994 Honest, reliable, considerate, having a strong feeling for justice.
Fire Dog 1946, 2006 Kind-hearted, cautious, working in a down-to-earth way.
Earth Dog 1958, 2018 Persistent, meticulously attentive, with good fortune in wealth.
Metal Dog 1910, 1970 Conservative, accommodating, strong sense of self-respect.
Water Dog 1922, 1982 Foresighted, responsible, but some self-centered.

 

Not born in a Year of the Dog, find out your Chinese zodiac here.

February 7, 2018 - 138 comments

How Does Acupuncture Improve Your Athletic Performance?

Kortney Haag, elite athelete & JADA Studios client

Athletes of all levels ponder the question: how do I improve my performance? Answer: Acupuncture. Thousands of years old, this effective and proven Chinese treatment has been praised for its medicinal properties of healing and recovery.

NFL and NBA athletes, professional tennis players and dancers, and elite triathletes swear by the results of this time-tested therapy. So how are these tiny needles actually making a difference and improving athletic performance? We’ll break it down to you:

#1 On-going acupuncture PROMOTES RECOVERY

Recovery is the name of the game for successful training. Acupuncture relaxes and re-energizes your over-worked muscles and joints by stimulating cortisol: a natural anti-inflammatory hormone that your adrenal glands produce.This can also help improve your sleep. A study found that acupuncture helps regulate both daytime and nighttime cycles – promoting more energy during the day and more restful sleep at night. This will speed up your recovery time.

#2 Acupuncture PROVIDES HEALING for injuries.

Acupuncture soothes compromised areas, injured muscles, bones, tendons, soft tissue and internal organs, by stimulating nerves and releasing natural chemicals that help relieve pain, like endorphins and serotonin. This opens restricted or obstructed paths where an injury has blocked the healthy flow of energy.

#3 Acupuncture can INCREASE ENDURANCE and STAMINA

Acupuncture can improve your athletic performance by pinpointing the areas of your body that encourage tonification.

You will have more energy for training/events and a more efficient recovery. It will improve your maximum heart rate, increase your oxygen consumption and help with lactic acid buildup and removal.

Tonification (def): increase the available energy of an organ, part, or system of the body.

#4 Acupuncture STIMULATES MICROCIRCULATION.

The body has over 400 acupuncture points, where microcirculation can occur. Microcirculation reduces swelling, heat and pain while promoting tissue repair that leads to new cell growth throughout your body.

Microcirculation (def): a sponge-like squeezing out of old blood cells and replenishment of new cells. This method creates a fresh flow of blood, boosting injured areas with oxygenated healthy cells.

#5 Acupuncture AIDS your IMMUNE SYSTEM.

Just living in today’s world practically guarantees that your immune system is compromised

- stress, bad food, environmental pollutants.

Acupuncture encourages production of white blood cells in your immune cell that act as adefense mechanism against outside organisms. White blood cells fight infections, autoimmune disorders and allergic reactions.

A strong immune system means a stronger body. More days to train, and less days needed for recovery.

Make an appointment to discuss your health issues and challenges. Let’s put you on the fast track to healing and an improved performance.

January 23, 2018 - 6 comments

The Power of Breath

Pause. Pay attention to your breathing. Don’t change anything. Just really pay attention. Close your eyes.

Are you holding your abdomen in and breathing strictly from you chest? Or is your stomach moving with the inhalation and exhalation? Are your breaths short, shallow, and hurried? Or long, rich, and relaxed?  

Your breathing is your life force, but how often do you think about it? Your breathing provides oxygen to your entire body. If you are breathing short and quick, there is far less oxygen entering your system and far more carbon dioxide than if you took long, deep, cleansing breaths. Bringing intention to something so simple and second natured as breathing can enhance your athletic performance, increase energy levels and help with recovery and relaxation.

By using proper breathing techniques, you will increase your lung capacity and flood your muscles with more oxygen, enhancing your performance during physical activities and sports.

How do you become a stronger breather? Just like how you become a stronger swimmer or runner or football player...you practice. Below are breathing exercises for you to use.

The basic breathing pattern is as follows:

  • Take an in breath (through your nose) which fills your abdomen
  • Continue to inhale and fill your lungs and chest
  • Exhale (through your mouth) first from your lungs,
  • Continue to exhale from your abdomen.  

Hint:It can help to lay down with one hand on your chest and one on your belly. This allows you to feel where you are expanding in your body and what area you are inhaling to first.  Try it out.

 

 

 

Once you have that wave like rhythm down, progress to count and hold variations. These counts and holds ratios will support different effects: relaxing, balancing, energizing. Play with the different ratios until you find one that you are comfortable with and will consistently do.

Inhalation Hold Exhalation Hold Effect
4 counts 1 count 8 counts 4 counts Relaxing
4 counts 1 count 12 counts 1 count Relaxing
6 counts 1 count 10 counts 1 count Relaxing
6 counts 1 count 8 counts 4 counts Relaxing
8 counts 1 count 8 counts 1 count Balancing
6 counts 2 counts 6 counts 2 counts Balancing
6 counts 4 counts 6 counts 1 count Energizing
6 counts 6 counts 6 counts 1 count Energizing

Although you may feel a bit rough and choppy at first, stick with these breathing exercise and you will see the results.  Start by just trying to do it for a few minutes, then ten minutes, thirty…  Practice these breathing exercises when you aren't in motion.  As you conquer them, try to include them in your athletic pursuits. You can match inhalation counts to strides or weight lifting. When you do, you will be able to run further, faster, and with more ease than you could previously.

Your power can be uncovered in your breath.

 

January 10, 2018 - 4 comments

New Year’s Resolution: Sleep!

As you begin a new year and commit to resolutions, don't forget to think about your sleep habits!

Most would agree that Americans work too hard, relax too little, stress too much and don’t get adequate sleep.  Most would also agree that this is an unhealthy lifestyle.  However, most do not understand why sleep deprivation is such a “big deal” for the health of our bodies and emotions. 

A study done by the Harvard Women’s Health Watch found that 75% of people have difficulty sleeping at least a few nights per week.  They suggest that a short bout of insomnia is nothing to worry about; it is the chronic sleep loss that is of bigger concern.  It can lead to health problems such as high blood pressure, decreased immune system function and weight gain.  The average amount of sleep suggested is eight hours, however, the normal range is between six to 10 hours.

We know you’re busy, so take a look at our “Cliff Notes” on the importance of getting enough sleep:

LEARNING and MEMORY

While we’re sleeping, the brain is working to transfer all new information to memory by creating new neuronal connections. So, if you learn something new before bed, you are more likely to remember and perform better later on.

METABOLISM and WEIGHT

This may sound strange, but sleep deprivation affects the way that our bodies store carbohydrates (energy and calories).  

It also alters the levels of hormones in our bodies, which are produced during sleep, like energy levels, digestion, appetite and sex drive. Without exception, these hormone deficiencies can cause disease and lead to endocrine system disorders.

SAFETY

If we don’t get enough sleep at night, we may be more apt to “falling asleep at the wheel.”

MOOD

Sleep loss often results in irritability, impatience, decreased concentration and more mood swings, all of which affects our lives and the people around us.

CARDIO HEALTH

More severe insomnia has been linked to high blood pressure, increased stress hormones and an irregular heartbeat.

DISEASE

Sleep deprivation harms the immune system’s ability to function including, the body’s killer T cells which ward off disease.

GROWTH

Sleep is the time when the body grows, rejuvenates and builds muscle. The REM stage of sleep is associated with learning and creating new memories as well as most of the metabolic rebuilding that takes place in our bodies.

Now that you understand how important sleeping is, you may be wondering how to you ensure you get the right  amount of shut-eye each night? 

  • Avoid alcohol or caffeinated beverages late in the afternoon or evening can also affect our sleep cycles.
  • You may feel exhausted after you exercise at night, but in reality it actually revs up our bodies and makes it harder to get a good night’s sleep.  
  • Try not to perform mental exercise or stressful activities such as studying, doing taxes, paperwork, etc. right before bed often leads to tossing and turning at night.  
  • Environmental factors, like temperature, noise, light, loft of your pillow, size and firmness of your bed.

Try taking a few short minutes to yourself before you turn in for the night.  Plug your phone in to he charger, leave it there and do five minutes of meditation, yoga or deep breathing (the challenge is to not pick up your phone until the morning). Clear your mind and prepare yourself to rest.

Make it a habit to wind-down at night, and soon your body will learn to recognize these cues by shutting your body down and a good night’s sleep will become habit, not just a fleeting dream.

Interested in the stages of sleep? See chart below.

STAGES OF SLEEP
Sleep stage Features
Stage 1 non-REM

Light sleep

  • - Transition between sleep and waking
  • - Easily roused
  • - Fleeting thoughts
  • - Eyes move slowly
  • - Reduced muscle activity
Stage 2 non-REM

Light sleep

  • - Eye movements stop
  • - Brief dreams
Stage 3 non-REM

Deep sleep

  • - Body temperature falls
  • - Person is hard to awaken
Stage 4 non-REM

Deep sleep

  • - Body temperature falls further
  • - Brain’s use of energy decreases
  • - Muscle tone decreases slightly
  • - May sleepwalk in this stage
REM

(REM = rapid eye movement)

  • - Eyes move rapidly to and from
  • - Most dreaming occurs
  • - Heart rate and blood pressure increase
  • - Limb muscles are paralyzed
  • - Brain is very active and uses a lot of energy

 

December 19, 2017 - 5 comments

Coming Soon…

To help uncover your potential and discover your power, we will be providing you with thoughts, ideas and advice around training, nutrition and health right here. The journey to your fullest potential is no easy feat. Dig in and study up starting January 2018!