Folks make a lot of assumptions about what I eat. In recent weeks it’s been announced (in my presence, and not by me) that I eat vegan, as well as Paleo, that I follow Weight Watchers, and that I’m just lucky, whatever that is, so I can eat whatever I want. In a funny way, this last part is true; I do eat whatever I want. It’s just not what you might think I want. At the grocery store, you can watch my neighbors taking nonchalant peeks into my grocery cart. So I’m going to spare you the trouble and explain it myself, right here and now. Continue reading
My friend Lia brought these to book club a couple weeks ago. OMG. You should make them. Technically they are meant to be dessert, but they would be great for breakfast, too. I would bring them to folks young and old. A reunion of friends. A picnic. A gathering of neighbors. A special meal. An ordinary one.
Food like this creates all kinds of moments, like moments in time and moments of gratitude. It’s a personal reminder that food is meant to nourish not just the body, but the heart and soul as well. And the best is when our food does all three at the same time. Thank you, Lia.
- ½ cup unsalted, natural almond butter
- 1 ½ cups unsalted pecan halves, divided
- 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
- ¼ tsp. salt
- 5-7 pitted Medjool dates (1/2 cup packed)
- ½ cup vegan chocolate chips
- 1/4 cup PLUS 1 Tbsp. natural almond butter, unsalted
- ¼ cup pecans, chopped
- Line an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment paper, greased foil, or wax paper. Set aside.
- To prepare the date-pecan layer, add dates and almond butter to a food processor. Blend approx. one minute until sticky and crumbly, like chunks of wet sand or dough. Scrape down the sides of the processor intermittently, as needed, between processing.
- Add 1 cup pecans, vanilla, and salt to food processor. Blend continuously until pecans are fully incorporated and mixture is soft and crumbly. When the mixture holds together when pinched, it’s ready. Add remaining pecans, and pulse only a few times until pecans are just barely incorporated, with medium-small pieces still visible.
- Pour the contents into the prepared baking pan. Press gently with a spatula, and smooth into an even, tightly-packed layer.
- To prepare the chocolate mixture, add chocolate chips and (¼ cup plus 1 Tbsp.) of almond butter to the top of a double boiler, or heat in a microwave (in a microwave-safe bowl) in 20-second increments until soft and melted. Stir until smooth.
- Pour chocolate mixture over date-pecan layer. Smooth into an even layer using a rubber spatula. Sprinkle evenly with chopped pecans, and press gently into the chocolate.
- Freeze for 20-30 minutes. Remove from freezer and slice into 16 generous bars or 20 bite-size pieces.
Thank you to Beaming Baker for a prior version of this recipe.
Just like the home you live in, I like to think of the heart as having plumbing, electricity, and carpentry. Most diseases of the heart can be traced to a problem in one of these systems. In other words, some heart diseases are due to plumbing problems, others to faulty wiring, and still others to the construction material itself. Continue reading
An article on the obesity epidemic once ran in our local paper with the headline “Eat, drink, and be sorry.” Eat, drink, and be SORRY? The actual quote reads, “Eat, drink, and be merry, so that joy will accompany him in his work all the days of his life.” And herein lies the problem. Continue reading
A special synergy comes from investing in three different kinds of activities that combine to improve your health and wellness: eating patterns, activity patterns, and rest & relaxation patterns. Activities that combine more than one at the same time — like gardening, picnics, or yoga, to name just a few — bring an extra special benefit. Here are a few examples of ways I have found to mix and match eating, moving, and relaxing. Continue reading
Here is how this all got started:
Last month I received an email from a friend asking about whether it was okay to eat a lot of fruit every day. She had seen an article in the NYTimes, “How to Stop Eating Sugar,” in which she read that fresh fruit is a good way to satisfy a sweet tooth without resorting to processed items with their excessive (absurd even, I would say) amounts of added sugar. Without specifying exactly how much was too much, the author included a warning… … Continue reading
A while ago I got a letter from a reader named Emily, who reported that she had joined Weight Watchers some time back, and found it especially helpful for portion control. Having watched the movie “Fat Head,” read Gary Taubes’s book “Good Calories, Bad Calories,” and read Your Health is On Your Plate, she wants to know if she can follow my recommendations and Weight Watchers at the same time. Plus, she wants to know what I eat. Continue reading
People sometimes ask how I became interested in nutrition, wellness, and prevention. Truth be told, it was my patients who taught me. After I had been practicing medicine for a few years, I noticed something odd. Continue reading