Get a Spa Chef’s Secret Sauce(s)

Chefs: They’re just like us! Except, uh, their food tastes way better.

One way chefs elevate their dishes is by drizzling on a sauce. That may seem complicated and time-consuming, but it doesn’t have to be. We tapped Jeremy “Rock” Smith, executive chef at the renowned Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health, for some of his favorite sauces. The best part: They’re super-healthy, quick, and easy enough for a weeknight, but tasty enough to break out for dinner guests.

Try the “Alfredo” sauce on noodles (regular ones or vegetable noodles). Spoon the pesto over fish, thin with oil and use as salad dressing, or stir into soft scrambled eggs.

Pumpkin Sage “Alfredo” Sauce

Kale Pesto

The post Get a Spa Chef’s Secret Sauce(s) appeared first on Clean Plates.


Best Infrared Sauna For Home Use

Besides relaxation, there are several health benefits to taking a hot sauna. Saunas raise your body temperature and heart rate and induce sweating, so the benefits are similar to those you get when you exercise. They also eliminate toxins, purify your skin, boost your immune system, and aid in weight loss. Infrared-heated saunas are one […]

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Chicken Tortilla Soup

Chicken tortilla soup is good for the soul and full of mouthwatering aromatics.

An interesting fact about tortilla soup (also known as sopa azteca) is that no one really knows where it came from. Some sources say it originated in Mexico City, but there’s actually no evidence that — even as a classic Mexican dish —  it started there. Because of its name sopa azteca, which means “soup of the Aztecs,” many assume this dish originated somewhere in central or southern Mexico, where the Aztecs originally settled.

Here's our twist on the classic Mexican chicken tortilla soup recipe, which is rich in nutrients and collagen, thanks to the addition of chicken bone broth.

Chicken tortilla soup is rich in antioxidants from the tomatoes, olive oil, cilantro, avocado, onion, chili, and spices (are you drooling yet?). And we’ve boosted the nutritional value in this Mexican classic by adding our collagen-rich chicken bone broth, which compliments the list of traditional ingredients nicely.

Although the ingredients list is a bit longer than our usual recipes, don’t fret: this recipe still takes minimal time to make if you already have shredded chicken breast on hand and yields 2 entree sized portions.

Chicken Tortilla Soup

Here’s our twist on the classic Mexican tortilla soup recipe, which is rich in nutrients and collagen, thanks to the addition of Kettle & Fire Chicken Bone Broth. 

  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 small onion (chopped)
  • 1 garlic clove (minced)
  • ½ jalapeno pepper (chopped)
  • 1 cup fresh corn
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne powder
  • 5 cups Kettle & Fire Chicken Bone Broth
  • 1 medium tomato (chopped)
  • ¾ cup organic canned tomato sauce
  • 1 cup cooked chicken breast (shredded)
  • 1 avocado
  • 1 corn tortilla (sliced into thin strips)
  • ½ tablespoon cilantro (roughly chopped)
  1. In a large stock pot over medium heat, warm the olive oil. Add the onion, garlic and jalapeno, and cook until onions are translucent, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients, minus the avocado, tortilla and cilantro. Turn the heat down to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, for 20 minutes.
  3. While the soup cooks, crisp the tortilla. On a medium non-stick pan over high heat, add the tortilla strips and cook, stirring, until golden brown on both sides.
  4. Pour the soup into large bowls and garnish with avocado, tortilla strips and cilantro.

Gluten Free

Here's our twist on the classic Mexican chicken tortilla soup recipe, which is rich in nutrients and collagen, thanks to the addition of chicken bone broth.

Here's our twist on the classic Mexican chicken tortilla soup recipe, which is rich in nutrients and collagen, thanks to the addition of chicken bone broth.

The post Chicken Tortilla Soup appeared first on The Kettle & Fire Blog.

Doctors on the take…

Leonard Cohen

Everybody knows the war is over
Everybody knows the good guys lost
Everybody knows the fight was fixed
The poor stay poor, the rich get rich
That’s how it goes
Everybody knows

Lyrics – Everybody Knows by Leonard Cohen

The current situation in medicine where everybody knows that the system has been completely corrupted, but nobody wants to change always reminds me of the song ‘Everybody Knows’ by Leonard Cohen. Huge amounts of $$$ have corrupted universities, researcher, doctors, and everybody knows. But why do we still allow it to happen?

Let’s consider several imaginary situations.

  1. A journalist from the New York Times routinely receives a large gift from home-building companies. He writes an opinion piece that is highly supportive of leveling playgrounds to erect more McMansions and condos. Is this unethical? Absolutely. In fact, the New York Times has a strict code of conduct that specifically prohibits acceptance of gifts, even a slice of pizza. Newspapers has a fiduciary duty to uphold the truth, and financial conflicts of interest among its journalists would erode that trust. Every major newspaper has a similar policy.
  2. A politician in New York routinely routinely receives large gifts from the home-building industry. He often goes out to free dinners and sees free shows with the salespeople. He is also highly supportive of leveling playgrounds to build more condos. Is the unethical? Absolutely. We would call this corruption and virtually every government employee and civil servant knows that this sort of chicanery is unacceptable. Even a schoolchild knows this is wrong. Politicians have a fiduciary duty to represent all of their constituents and financial conflicts of interest are strictly forbidden. Every city in North America has the same policy.
  3. A policeman routinely receives gifts from a ‘friendly’ neighbour. This neighbour drinks and drives regularly, but never seems to get into trouble. Is this unethical? Absolutely. Legally you can’t even give a policeman a refreshing lemonade on a hot day. It’s called graft, and is completely against the NYPD code of conduct. Policemen can be summarily fired for this offense. This is because police have a sworn duty to uphold the law, and financial conflicts of interest are strictly forbidden. Every major police department has a similar policy.

The same ethical standards do not apply to physicians, however. Doctors are also in a position of trust and have a fiduciary duty to protect the health of their patients. At the same time, they make decisions that may put thousands of dollars into Big Pharma’s pocket. These two decisions routinely conflict, but unlike the politician, policeman or journalist doctors may legally accept hundreds, thousands or hundreds of thousands of $$$.

Other than disclosing this financial conflict of interest, nothing else happens. The graft goes all the way up to the top. Starting with the individual doctors, there’s good evidence (as if we needed it) that gifts from pharmaceuticals influences prescribing behavior. It seems kind of obvious that giving lots of money to doctors will make them look favourably on the drug industry (such as this study, from PLOS ONE). Big Pharma can easily influence prescribing practices by paying doctors although it is never called that explicitly. Instead, these numerous financial conflicts of interest (COI) are called research grants, education grants, consulting fees, speaker fees, gifts and free meals.

While studies consistently show that such gifts influence physician behaviour, physicians themselves consistently deny that such gifts has any such influence. This is a case of burying one’s head in one’s a**, since it seems perfectly obvious that Big Pharma would not waste millions of dollars every year paying out $$$ without a good return. There are none so blind as those that will not see. Studies confirm that increased interaction with pharmaceuticals increases far more branded (expensive) prescriptions, less generic (cheaper) alternatives and helps add these medications to hospital formularies (where they can be prescribed).

The rather elementary logic goes like this. Big pharma pays lots of $$$ to doctors. Doctors prescribe lots of drugs. Big pharma makes more $$$, and pays even more to doctors. Who loses? Patients and the general public. Everywhere else, it’s called corruption, graft, payola, grease, or kickback. In medicine, it’s called ‘the way things work’.

While laws and codes of ethics exist for restricting gifts to almost everybody (journalists, police, civil servants, teachers etc), no such law exists for doctors, other than disclosure. Because it is tacitly encouraged, the list of financial COI can become ridiculous. For example, here’s the rather lengthy list of payments for one ‘research paper’ by Dr. Sievenpiper and colleagues at the University of Toronto arguing that sugar is really a health food. It may not surprise you that this doctor, as well as his hospital (St. Michael’s Hospital) and University (Toronto) are receiving $$$ from such altruistic institutions like Coca Cola and the Calorie Control Council (a puppet organization of the soda companies). It’s not just the individual doctor that is corrupted – it is the entire academic system. The graft reaches all the way to the top. With enough ‘incentive’ this university, hospital and doctor would probably even argue that smoking is good for us. Why is this even allowed?

Imagine that we allowed teachers to be paid off by the cult of Scientology. They would teach our children that we came from a planet call Xenu as part of a Galactic Confederacy 75 million years ago. These children grow up and divert billions of tax dollars towards the Scientologists, who now have even more money to pay off the teachers, which reinforce their beliefs. I, for one, welcome our future overlords.

But not everybody thinks this is an acceptable situation. But yet we still allow the exact same thing with our supposed guardians of health – our physicians. IF we care about the health of our world, we must act to end the kickbacks.

The tacit acceptance of these kickbacks is even more infuriating. I have gone to many lectures given by university professors, and when disclosing their COI (conflicts of interest), there is a huge list. Then, he/she will joke that “I’m not biased because I accept money from every drug maker”. This draws a knowing laugh from the audience of physicians because this is ‘the way things work’. Everybody knows the deal is rotten. Everybody knows the captain lied. Everybody knows the dice are loaded. But nobody speaks. These are the most influential physicians in the world, the ones that lecture thousands of other doctors and the ones that change the practice of medicine more than anybody else. These are the same doctors taking the most money. Isn’t this a huge ticking time bomb?

Doctors don’t think so. They don’t even know they are being influenced. A study of medical residents suggested that 61% of medical residents felt that gifts don’t influence their prescribing pattern. Medical students had no problem identifying that gifts are problematic other professions, but not for doctors. Graft and corruption – it’s only a problem for everybody else. A study by Orlowski and Wateska tracked use of drugs after 20 physicians at an institution sent to medical education seminars sponsored by drug companies. Afterward, usage of the 2 drugs more than tripled, but tellingly, all but 1 of the physicians denied that seminars influenced them in any way. 95% of the doctors just thought “Hey, free lunch”.

There is no free lunch. Big Pharma is not stupid, you know. They know they are getting a good return on their investment. For physicians, the first part of solving a problem is to admit that one exists. It’s instructive that Big Pharma prohibits its own employees from even receiving the smallest of gifts, while giving generously to physicians, universities and hospitals while simultaneously denying that this influences their decisions. The indigo dyer wears white trousers (ancient Japanese proverb).

The study by Wood et al (2017) shows that in virtually every specialty, doctors who received gifts from Big Pharma prescribed more, prescribed costlier medications and more branded prescriptions. This is also true for nurse practitioners as well as physicians assistants.

Indeed, there is a clear dose relationship between the two. When Big Pharma gives small gifts, there is a small increase in prescriptions. When Big Pharma gives big gifts, there is a larger increase. Not rocket science. The cost of the medication, borne by patients and taxpayers, almost doubles while Big Pharma and the doctors drink their expensive wines and eat their fancy meals. The doctors have betrayed the sacred trust since pharmaceutical companies have no such duty to the patient.

It’s time to stop the gravy train. The egregious betrayal of public trust happens in every university with a medical school every single day or every single year. While individual doctors are culpable, the universities and academic physicians are far more so. The potential for harm from financial conflicts of interest are exponentially higher. These professors and doctors spend less time treating real patients, instead focusing on research and teaching. Thus, if they embrace certain lucrative drug treatments, they are less likely to see the direct effects. They do not talk to the family who is struggling to afford their $5000/ year medication when another one costing $50 would do just as well.

They are also the doctors most likely to be receive large gifts in the form of direct payments or ‘research’ money. These are the same doctors who teach medical students their loose code of ethics (hey, taking money and gifts and free dinner from Big Pharma is good). They write biased (the doctors themselves are ignorant of their own biases) guidelines that promote the standard of care. They lecture to other doctors. The solutions are really quite simple.

  1. Every doctor who teaches at a medical school or university should be prohibited from receiving any form of compensation from anybody else. If you work at a university, you should not be paid off by anybody else. Every major corporation in the world abides by these rules. So should doctors.
  2. Every organization that publishes guidelines cannot have financial conflicts of interest. Guidelines are not advertisements. If the American Diabetes Association (ADA) wants to write a guideline (which becomes standard of practice) then the ADA cannot be receiving any money other than from members
  3. Every doctor on a committee that writes guidelines must not have any financial COI.
  4. Every editor of a journal should not have any financial COI. This is not allowed for newspapers or major magazines, for example.

While some may feel these are draconian rules, they are really just the same rules that apply to everybody else.


The post Doctors on the take… appeared first on Intensive Dietary Management (IDM).

A Meal-Prep Plan You Can Stick To (Really!)

By Laura D’Alessandro

Meal prep is an incredible way to save money on meals, but too often we start doing it and then drop off.

We’ve found that the secrets to a meal-prep plan you’ll turn to again and again are: Peppering in some convenience foods strategically, and leaving room for life’s unexpected moments. Building in a night out and a lunch out of the office is key to preventing food waste.

Read on for our real-world, totally do-able and delicious meal-prep plan.

Meal Plan For the Week


  • Breakfast: Slow-Cooker Oats
  • Lunch: Chicken Broccoli Casserole
  • Dinner: Egg Roll in a Bowl


  • Breakfast: Slow-Cooker Oats
  • Lunch: Egg Roll in a Bowl
  • Dinner: Cauli Rice Taco Bowl


  • Breakfast: Slow-Cooker Oats
  • Mid-Week Lunch Out
  • Dinner: Chicken Broccoli Casserole


  • Breakfast: Sheet Pan Omelette
  • Lunch: Collard Wraps
  • Dinner: Cauli Rice Taco Bowl


  • Breakfast: Sheet Pan Omelette
  • Lunch: Collard Wraps
  • Friday Night Out!

Breakfast: Slow-Cooker Oatmeal

Big batch oatmeal

Swap: Frozen Fruit for Fresh
Prep: Make-Ahead Oats
Who has time to cook a wholesome breakfast on busy mornings? Instead, at bedtime on Sunday night, simply toss oats, water or milk, fruit and spices into your slow cooker, cover, set it to low for 8 hours and by morning you’ll have a warm, comforting breakfast. Avoid additional prep by using frozen berries instead of cutting up fresh fruit.

Lunch: Chicken Broccoli Casserole

Chicken broccoli casserole

Swap: Frozen Broccoli for Fresh
Prep: Baked Chicken Breasts
Casseroles are a comforting nostalgic favorite. Bulk yours up with extra broccoli and some cauliflower rice. Use frozen vegetables in place of fresh to save money and time chopping and sautéing. Bake the chicken breasts in advance of making the casserole or use baked chicken from the prepared foods section to help this come together in a few minutes.

Dinner: Egg Roll in a Bowl

Egg roll in a rowl

Swap: Broccoli Slaw for Hand-Cut Vegetables
Prep: Chopped Garlic and Onions
“Egg roll in a bowl” is a great way to turn a decadent comfort food into a healthy weeknight meal. Use prepared broccoli slaw instead of spending a lot of time slicing and dicing yourself. Prep chopped garlic and onions the weekend before so you can assemble this quickly on a weeknight.

Breakfast: Sheet Pan Frittata

Sheet pan frittata

Swap: Frozen Spinach for Fresh
Prep: Multi-Serving Omelette
Greens are some of the most nutrient-dense foods you can eat, but baby spinach can turn into a slimy mess all too quickly. Frozen spinach to the rescue. Simply combine it with 6 beaten eggs in a well greased half-sheet pan and bake. Breakfast for days.

Lunch: Salmon Salad Collard Wraps

Collard wrap

Swap: Canned Wild Salmon for Fresh
Prep: Salmon Salad
A batch of salmon salad goes a long way. Spread it on toast or into celery sticks for a quick snack, or wrap it in lightly steamed collard leaves for a hearty, nutrient-packed meal. Canned salmon is fast and easy and far less expensive than fresh. Add lemon and parsley to keep it bright and fresh.

Dinner: Cauli Rice Taco Bowl

Cauli rice taco bowl

Swap: Frozen Riced Cauliflower for Rice
Prep: Ground Turkey and Chopped Peppers
Replace rice with riced cauliflower and gain in nutrition what you lose in excess carbs and calories. You can pop fresh riced cauliflower in the freezer, or just buy it frozen for easy rice dishes whenever you like. For a quick taco bowl on demand, cook ground turkey with some of the already-prepped garlic and onions, plus chopped bell peppers and some taco seasoning. Add whatever taco fixings you have on hand (hello, jarred salsa).


BIO: Laura D’Alessandro is a recipe developer and meal prep expert in Los Angeles. For meal prep assistance, visit her website at

The post A Meal-Prep Plan You Can Stick To (Really!) appeared first on Clean Plates.

Panasonic EP-MA10 Review: Massage Chair TESTED [Nov. 2017]

Panasonic is making some pretty exquisite massage chairs. They’re breaking through some of the standards we’ve come to expect with regard to the design functionality barrier in the industry, and the Panasonic EP-MA10 is no exception. This is billed by Panasonic as a contemporary lounger, which it is. But with the added benefit of the […]

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Osaki OS-Pro Maxim Review: Massage Chair TESTED [Nov. 2017]

Osaki is a top name in the world of massage chairs. Their line runs the gamut from price and features, their reputation is solid, and they are well respected for their adherence to quality, technology, and comfort. The Osaki OS-Pro Maxim is no exception when it comes to the benefits of their entire range of […]

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