Serves 2 Ingredients Ingredients for zucchini 2 large yellow or green zucchinis/squash 2 tsp sea salt 2 tbsp olive oil 4 garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced Lemon zest, finely minced 1 tsp chili flakes* 1 tbsp rock salt Pecorino romano, grated (optional garnish) *Chili Flakes are an Avoid for types A & AB. Ingredients for Basil Oil ¼ cup fresh basil 1 tbsp almonds, toasted ½ cup olive oil Instructions: With a slicer, thinly slice the zucchini until you get to the wet seedy core. Slice the widest strips in half lengthwise so all the strips are of similar size. Finely mince the core and reserve. To prepare the basil oil, place the basil, almonds and olive oil in a food processor and pulse until smooth. Season to taste. In a large pan over low heat, slowly cook the garlic with the lemon zest and chili, if using, for 10-15 minutes until it turns golden and soft. Raise the heat to medium, add the chopped zucchini core to the pan, season with salt, stir and cook for an additional 5 minutes or until most of the moisture has evaporated. Turn the heat down to low while you cook the zucchini-ribbon pasta. Salt the pot of boiling water with the rock salt and boil the zucchini ribbons for 3 minutes. Transfer the cooked zucchini ribbons to the pan with the garlic, mix well until all ingredients are well coated in the oil. Plate the coated zucchini ribbons in a bowl, drizzle the basil oil on top, and garnish with Pecorino. Mix well and enjoy warm!
The body doesn't distinguish between physical and psychological threats. Whether you are stressed over a busy schedule, traffic jams, financial issues, or what you are hearing on the news, your body still reacts just as strongly as if you were facing a life or death situation. If you have a lot of worries and responsibilities, your emergency stress response (fight or flight) may be on most of the time. The more this stress response is activated, the harder it is to shut off. The fight or flight response causes cortisol levels to rise, and stay elevated for hours, even days after a stressful situation. High cortisol levels cause inflammation, insulin resistance, elevated blood pressure, and long term exposure can lead to serious health problems. Chronic stress disrupts nearly every system in your body. It elevates blood pressure, suppresses the immune system, increases the risk of heart attack & stroke, contributes to infertility, and SPEEDS UP the aging process. Prolonged stress (even a few months) can actually rewire the brain, leaving you more vulnerable to anxiety and depression. Many of our health problems today are caused or exacerbated by stress. Our current life styles have created a "stress epidemic" in our world as we know it. The take away here....manage your stress ASAP! Make lifestyle changes, get enough sleep, and use adaptogens when needed
Melatonin and cortisol are hormones that regulate our sleep / wake cycles. These hormones suppress each other, and have opposite rhythms. Cortisol levels begin to rise as the sun dose, or just before our normal, regular time to wake up. Cortisol increases our body temperature, where melatonin lowers it so we can sleep better. Cortisol levels continue to rise throughout the day, while melatonin levels stay low. When cortisol peaks, then starts its decline as the daylight fades, this is when melatonin levels begin to rise. Melatonin receptors are found in the brain, organs, digestive tract and eyes. A person who is blind does not have these receptors in their eyes. Our bodies make between 2-3 mg a day, and most of that is produced in the digestive tract. (Perhaps that is why it is so beneficial for reflux) If you remember that light suppresses melatonin, then you can understand why using electronic devices that emit light (esp the blue wave), watching TV or leaving all the lights on till you go to bed, can really affect your sleep.....right? Now if you lived in a dark cave, your melatonin wouldn’t be suppressed, causing you to sleep more than being awake. Taking melatonin can be helpful for sleep, but the strength, type and timing are determined by the issue of either not being able to fall asleep, or not being able to stay asleep. Full spectrum light is a part of the equation also, so 20-30 min each day, either from exposure to the sun, or sitting in front of a full spectrum light box. For those who can’t fall asleep, light exposure in the morning, and immediate release melatonin is best. If the problem is waking up and struggling to go back to sleep, then later afternoon light exposure, and a timed released melatonin work best. It’s important to remember that we’re not trying to suppress the symptoms of insomnia, we are trying to “reset” your internal clock, by changing the hormone levels. Working on your internal sleep / wake hormonal rhythms requires patience, consistency, and perseverance. Going to bed at the same time each night, no food within two hours of bedtime, and avoiding electronic devices and bright light and hour before bed. I have provided the basics here, but this might not work for everyone because we all have different situations that may affect our sleep. I am here to help with you on your individual sleep issues