The weather’s been strange here. Wait, let me rephrase that… I’m not used to living in a snow-free city in November.
The sun is shining, I find myself wearing light jackets, sweaters and I even got away with wearing shorts on Monday. Shorts in November… that’s madness!
As a result, today’s cleanse recipe has bright summery colors and cool flavors, but keeps things seasonal with warmed greens and a richer protein source. It’s got a whole lot of goodness in every bite!
I’m on day 14 of the Moksha Yoga NDG 30 day yoga challenge, day 10 of the two week cleanse program and I’m feeling great… although I could really, really go for a rest day, I’m forging forward. There’s no stopping this train!
Before the month started, I created a theme for each week of the challenge to help me stay focused and on track for change. Last week was all about focusing on nourishing my body and this week it’s about making sure I’m giving my brain what it needs to stay balanced. Some of the ways I’ve planned to do this is to not eat sugar (that includes things like coconut sugar, stevia and xylitol), eat extra healthy fats (omega oils on salads, omega-rich fish, and sprinkles of nuts and seeds on various meals), enjoy a restful (8 hour) sleep, work on my meditation practice, that sort of thing.
My hope is at that at the end of each week, I’ll have new tools and habits in place that will carry on to the following week, and so on.
This week is focused on feeding our brains. We want those synapses firing! And there’s no better way to do that than to eat omega-rich foods.
In order of concentration, here are some of my favorite omega-3 rich foods:
Flax seeds. I put that sh*% on everything.
Walnuts. They look like mini brains, don’t they? Coincidence? I think not.
Wild rice. Considered a grass and is also a great source of fiber.
Edamame. Unlike it’s other soy counterparts, edamame is higher in omega-3 than it is omega-6.
Pasture-raised meats, dairy and eggs. These animals have been raised eating plants, not corn, and therefore have higher amounts of healthy fats than your average corn-fed animal.
For seafood, Seafood Watch recommends which seafood to buy or avoid, educates consumers on fishing methods, and helps consumers and businesses become advocates for ocean-friendly seafood. You can get their recommendations online, in their printed pocket guides, or on your mobile device.
Basically, you search for the fish; in my case, salmon, and Seafood Watch tells you what type to choose!
A 15 minute meal complete with a fresh orange and avocado salsa, a fillet of moist salmon and lightly cooked bok choy.
1 navel orange, peeled, inner skin removed and segmented
½ avocado, diced
1 tablespoon finely diced red onion
2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh mint, chopped
Juice from ½ a lemon
Pinch crushed red pepper flakes
Sea salt, to taste
Fresh pepper, to taste
2 (4-ounce) wild salmon fillets
3 heads bok choy, roughly chopped
2 tablespoons slivered almonds
Pinch crushed red pepper flakes
Combine salsa ingredients in a small bowl. Stir to coat, cover and place in the fridge until ready to use.
Preheat a non-stick pan on medium heat. Add salmon, flipping halfway through, until cooked. About 3 to 4 minutes per side. When you have about 1 minute left, add a spritz of lemon juice from your leftover squeezed lemon. Just a touch is all you need!
Meanwhile, heat a second pan on medium heat and add bok choy. Cook until bright green and slightly wilted, about 1 minute per side. Transfer to a plate and top with slivered almonds and red pepper flakes.
Spoon salsa over fish to serve.
View nutrition information (once on page, scroll down)
I made the salsa first so that the flavors would develop while everything else was cooking.
Begin by segmenting your oranges and removing the skin from the flesh of the orange. It’s easy if you cut it like this:
Next, cut the avocado. I just cut horizontal and vertical lines in the flesh, then scooped out into the bowl.
My favorite trick for keeping the other half of the avocado from browning is to wrap it in the skin from the used half. Store it in a little baggy and you’ll be surprised at how fresh it stays!
Squeeze in some lemon juice, add the rest of the ingredients, cover and chill until you’re ready to devour.
Next up, get your bok choy and salmon ready.
I usually save the ends of the bok choy to use as paint stamps for crafts. Look at the end there, it looks like a rose, doesn’t it? Save the end, dip in paint and press onto paper. It’ll create a beautiful rose on the page!
Place your salmon in a pan…
and bok choy in the other. I began with the stems and worked my way up to the leaves.
And, in less time that it took to print the recipe and remove the ingredients from the fridge, you’ll have dinner on your kitchen table ready to be enjoyed.
What foods or practices do you have in your life to maintain a healthy brain?