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Thyroid Journey, What is the Thyroid?

Thyroid Journey:
My personal experiences, things I have learned, notes of interest and info. that might be of help, on the winding road of managing thyroid health and issues.

What is the thyroid?

(picture courtesy of yourdictionary.com)

What is the thyroid gland? Well, according to the dictionary:
noun
noun: thyroid; noun: thyroid gland; plural noun: thyroid glands; noun:thyroid cartilage; plural noun: thyroid cartilages
  1. 1.
    a large ductless gland in the neck that secretes hormones regulating growth and development through the rate of metabolism.
    • an extract prepared from the thyroid gland of animals and used in treating deficiency of thyroid hormones.
      plural noun: thyroids
  2. 2.
    a large cartilage of the larynx, a projection of which forms the Adam's apple in humans.                                                                                                                                             
    Let's see what else there is...
    The thyroid is a butterfly-shaped gland that sits low on the front of the neck. Your thyroid lies below your Adam’s apple, along the front of the windpipe. The thyroid has two side lobes, connected by a bridge (isthmus) in the middle. When the thyroid is its normal size, you can’t feel it.
    Brownish-red in color, the thyroid is rich with blood vessels. Nerves important for voice quality also pass through the thyroid.
    The thyroid secretes several hormones, collectively called thyroid hormones. The main hormone is thyroxine, also called T4. Thyroid hormones act throughout the body, influencing metabolism, growth and development, and body temperature. During infancy and childhood, adequate thyroid hormone is crucial for brain development.
This is the first in an ongoing series all focused on the thyroid, it's importance, what it does, what happens when it doesn't do what it's supposed to, and a whole host of other interesting stuff with recipes and personal stories. Let me hear your story, comment down below. I really want to hear from you and let you know that you are not alone. Have a blessed day and be well.

Date & Almond Smoothie

                    
Good day lovelies, 
I am coping with a bit of a headache and being on anything electronic is not feeling so great; so this is a quick Tasty Tuesday post.
I am using dates to sweeten my smoothies more, they are lower sugar, become nice and plump when soaked, add dietary fiber, and have a nice caramelly taste. I chucked all these ingredients in my trusty bullet blender and really enjoyed the taste. It was a nice mild and filling way to start my day yesterday. I am working on a recipe for golden milk, will post that another day if I like it. For now, enjoy this one and grab some sun, we are finally are seeing the rain go away.

DATE AND ALMOND SMOOTHIE
Ingredients:
5-6 Dates with no pits, soaked overnight in water, then drained
1 Frozen banana or 1/2 Cup frozen mango
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp vanilla bean seeds or paste
11/2 Cup unsweetened almond milk
1 Tbsp roasted almond butter

Method:
Blend all & enjoy!
             

                          
God bless you and Jesus guide your every step.
                            

Cannelle Bakery Bread Review

                         
Morning lovelies!
I am all about this bread and I cannot wait to share with you. 
It's a new player on the gluten-free bread scene at my local grocers, it's from a Quebec based company called Cannelle Boulangerie; not to be confused with Maison Cannelle (QC has a thing for cinnamon), has a line of breads that I think, in the history of gluten-free bread from the freezer section, blows away any bread  I have had. Yes, it was and is that good. Allow me to break it down for you. I bought the Muesli Cheri bread which was whole-grain with walnuts & a touch of honey. 
First things first, this bread is a great value; it is priced at under $6.00! I paid $5.69 and the size is bigger than my usual gluten-free breads, like almost double the loaf! I was over the moon because of the selection of flavours, flours used, whole-grain, lactose-free, non-gmo, and locally made, it was amazing to behold. 
                             
As you can see in the above picture, the slices are more on par with regular slices of gluten whole grain breads. You can see that it's still holding together-like no problem holding together! It DID NOT crumble at any point, not before toasting, not during, not after, not while being handled, (I divide my bread in half and use only half per week, the rest I refreeze)
and this was a loaf that had previously been frozen! For all you gluten bread eater's, I know this may seem like an extreme exaggeration but ask any gluten-free eater, it's a big deal.
                           
Slices were a proper thickness, not ridiculously thick or too thin, and you will adore how you can actually see the walnuts and grains in the bread. 
                          
This was the bread divided in half that I froze, the rest I refrigerated in a Ziploc bag because there are no preservative chemicals in this bread-double win!
                          
Another huge selling point for me was that it was not a brick of death heaviness, that feels like it's twisting one's intestines for the sole purpose of further torturing the gluten challenged; but I digress...
Next, it toasted gloriously! See for yourself:
                           
Most importantly, it tasted stupendously good! It was light but not empty fluff, it was crisp with good substance, a nice balanced bite, shorter toast time-including not needing to be flipped for a second side re-toast! I put butter on both, tried one with marmalade and kept one plain.
                           
I had to test the marmalade one twice to be sure I had it right, hehheh. Okay, I just like marmalade. Anywhoodles, this bread is a smashing success! It tasted slightly nutty but very mild, had a very balanced texture/crunch/flavour profile, it didn't get horribly dry, held up to spreads, and in my opinion, tasted best on its own with butter and a delightful Earl Grey spot O' tea! I am highly recommending you go out and try this brand, it's the bread you have been looking for. Especially if you were a whole grain, healthier bread eater before you had to go gluten-free. There are other flavours such as: (I tried the quinoa & it was delicious!)
And it's this wonderful group of people who are bringing us such a fantastic product, thank you so much for helping me fall in love with gluten-free bread! 
This company also has a line of mixes, desserts and a myriad of other cool gluten-free baking stuff. You really need to get out there and grab some Cannelle Boulangerie goodness!
Leave any comments or questions down below, I love to hear from you.

Have a happy & blessed day everyone!

Vegan Raw Food Key Lime Pie Smoothie

Hi!
                            

So, as I was searching for pie pics I discovered that key lime pie is extremely popular, there are so many ways people are getting creative and putting a cool twist on this tart and tangy dessert, made big in Florida a long time ago. There is the ever popular Key Lime Pie:





Then there are key lime pie stuffed strawberries-what a clever combo:



Key lime pie truffles! 


Key lime pies in jars:



Key lime pie layered breakfast in a jar:






Delicious key lime pie raw vegan bars:



I could go on but I think it's pretty obvious that the humble lime has a ton of awesomeness in its sour middle. I have always preferred it to lemons although I use both a lot. 
Many people believe that Limes are lemons that have not matured, this is actually incorrect. Limes are a citrus fruit all on their own, just like mandarins or grapefruit a word I always struggle to remember in English as it looks nothing like a grape but makes sense in French as it is a pamplemousse, but I digress. Here's some brief info on the lime before I get to the recipe:

Lemons and limes grow from different trees. Lemons grow from Citrus limon trees. Key limes grow from Citrus aurantifolia trees, and Persian limes grow from Citrus latifolia trees.
Persian limes produce lots of juice and are the limes that most grocery stores sell, and key limes are sweeter and used in many desserts. There are also other lime varieties. Trees that produce both lemons and limes can be created by grafting branches from one tree onto another tree. These are called fruit cocktail trees and are possible because lemon and lime trees are in the same plant genus, Citrus. However, fruit cocktail trees are not natural and can only be created artificially.

Limes are an excellent source of vitamin C, and are often used to accent the flavours of foods and beverages. They are grown year-round in tropical climates and are usually smaller and less sour than lemons, although varieties may differ in sugar and acidic content. Plants with fruit called "limes" have diverse genetic origins; "Limes" is not a monophyletic group.

The above info was from wiki and ask.com.

All this lime research has got me super psyched to create some new recipes, I am thinking raw food vegan lime truffles and raw food vegan key lime pie pops might be in our future. Awwwww yeah! 
I hope you like tangy, pucker punch in your smoothie because this bad boy does just that and puts a smile on your face while doing it. The original recipe is from Living Raw Food by Sarma Melngailis, I found it way too sweet. Mainly because it contained agave which, if you follow this blog you know I don't like or agree with using. It needed some modification for my milder sweet tooth and honestly, I feel it's better for it. Bonus, everyone who has tried it swooned. This happened last Friday when I brought it for a few people to taste, so Nina, this one's for you! (Your heart can do a little happy dance when you have it again.) 
Enjoy it people, remember to share with those you love, leave your comments on how it turned out for you down below, and don't forget to subscribe! 

VEGAN RF KEY LIME PIE SMOOTHIE:

Ingredients:

1 ripe avocado
2 limes juiced (I like to add the zest of 1 lime but this is optional-no Nina it wasn't in the one you tasted ;p) 
1 ripe banana
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 Tbsp maple syrup (grade B, that's the darker one) 
1 3/4 Cups brown apple juice, the real stuff not the yellow fake one. Feel free to juice your own. 
Small pinch of pink sea salt

Method:
Throw it all in a blender and blend for 20-30 seconds maximum, if you do more it will become a gross frothy mix and you're really aiming for thick smoothie. 
Must be served chilled, I like mine over ice. 
Makes 2 servings. 

                             

Date Paste Rawfood

Bonjour!

Let me start by saying that date paste is a wonderful way to sweeten raw food recipes and add some lovely fiber to your food. This particular recipe is needed to make the Raw food pecan pie date bar recipe, which I will be posting soon, soon, soon. So, technically this is part one that leads to lovely part two which I will link when all is said & done.
This date paste is very easy, uses only 2 ingredients, and is so versatile. I like to use it in raw desserts, soups, smoothies, and even for salad dressings. Hmmmmm, good future recipe post ideas, will do.
Here you go, and FYI, this recipe's final amount is perfect for the pecan pie bars I mentioned earlier, I prefer to make Raw food items in smaller quantities when I can because they do not last very long and I am usually the only one who is eating them.

DATE PASTE:  (Rawfood)

Ingredients:
12 Diglet dates, pits removed
1/2 Cup Filtered water, plus 1 Cup for soaking

Method:
-Soak dates in one cup warm water overnight, water will cool, it's okay.
-Next morning drain dates, and put in blender.
-Add 1/2 Cup water and blend until a paste forms, the same consistency as in the pics down below. You may add a bit more water as needed if your dates were larger and the consistency is too thick. You are looking for a ketchup consistency.
-Store in an airtight container, I prefer glass jars( I used one of those cute mini mason jars), for 5-7 days in the fridge. Freezes beautifully, lasts one month when frozen. I recommend freezing them in ice cube trays, then popping them out and putting them in freezer bags to use as needed.
I hope you enjoy it, comments down below and don't forget to subscribe! 




Spiritual Warfare Part 1




Happy Sunday Lovelies!

I have been listening to sermons with a focus on Spiritual Warfare and it has been a real eye opener, a tremendous comfort, given loads of answers, and has been a blessing. They were a series done by Chip Ingram, I will give you the link so you can check them out if you are interested. I really feel that every Christian and every person should listen to this series.
http://livingontheedge.org/series/invisible-war/daily-radio

I am not trying to cram religion down anyone's throat, I am not sitting here preaching, I just want to provide support and lead you to some answers you may have not even realized to ask questions to. I do not believe in religion, I believe in God and I have given my life over to Christ. Jesus is my savior, not my religion.

In these times we are in, we find ourselves surrounded by many distractions, occurrences that we cannot explain, understand, accept, or even see for what they truly are. We are constantly told what to wear, how to dress, how to live, how to compare, to make more money, to covet, to desire more, to be cruel to, whom and how to hate, whom to look down upon, we are lead to idol worship, we destroy our lives and the lives of others without seeing the truth of that which is before us. Then there are those of us who can see and are unsure, confused, frightened into inaction, frozen by uncertainty, swallowed by sorrow and desperate for help.
I will do a quick overview of what was covered and you can take what you like, leave the rest. Only, take some time to research and read up on all of this more, so you can understand God's plan in all of this.

There are 5 Basic Truths about Spiritual Warfare, they are:

1-There is an invisible world that is just as real as the visible world.
2 Kings 6:15-17
Daniel 10
                              
                              

2- We are involved in an invisible war. A cosmic conflict that has eternal implications. The attack is on your mind. The enemy is the father of lies. He is a liar, he deludes, a deceiver, he casts doubt on God, on His word, on you. Your mind, beliefs, world view, that is where the majority of the battle occurs. The god of this world (Satan) has blinded the minds of unbelievers. Why?
That they might not see the Light of the Gospel of the Glory of Christ; who is in the image of God.
Part of the enemy's strategy is to blind the minds of people, so they cannot ascertain, they cannot grasp the truth.
2 Corinthians 10:3-5
1 Timothy 4:1
                                    

                                                                                                                                                           

                              

                            
3- Our foe is formidable and his goal is to destroy us. Destroy us and discredit the cause of Christ. Satan and his forces have a plan to terrorize your soul, to render you impotent, as a believer. To make you worthless to the cause of Christ and to make your life one of misery and spiritual defeat.
John 8:44
James 4
Jude 9
                                 

                                    
                                            

Like a lion, the enemy seeks vulnerability, easy prey. It is not all the time, it is when you are low, tired, traveling, late at night, after everyone has gone to bed. You are gotten to by way of temptation, hoping no one else sees or discovers, you are sucked in, you feel bad/dirty. He gets you with temptation and then the double whammy, it is always followed up with guilt and condemnation.
DO NOT be fearful but have a healthy respect, we are in a battle.
The cult of happiness is another lie interwoven with truths, our lives, our world, are not a playground; a place for our constant happiness, a way for us to get whaever we want by viewing God as some cosmic vending machine. The goal in life is not just to be happy, this is not a playground, this IS abattlefield. Life is not about personal satisfaction all the time. The enemy uses false prophets, false doctrine, and false beliefs to sway us and blind us to the Glory of Christ, and the glory of God.

    Jesus did not take demonic activity lightly, there are over 30 references in the bible to demons and such activity and encounters.
The authority of the scripture.
The authority of Christ and the amount of material that the new testament gives to the reality of Satan and demons, will truly capture your attention. This is not considered to be a small topic, to be glossed over and passed by.

Jesus was tempted with: anger, lust, jealousy, depression, agonizing choices/decisions.
His way of handling all of this?
He would pray whenever he was being tempted. When someone was being harassed or tempted by the enemy, Jesus would pray. Total dependence on God.

4-We must respect our foe but not fear him, become acutely aware of his methods but not preoccupied with him. Do you know his methods?
The enemy plants doubts, provokes sin, produces sex and cults, is crafty, instills fear, will win you over, crafting it all. He is the prince of this world, he has a system, he is the accuser of the brethren, a tempter. He will move you off of good to evil, sweet to sour, he is beautiful, winsome, attractive, liar, slanderer, seductive, false, absolute corruption, a below dweller.
You must remember, his power is limited and he can be resisted by the Christian. Resist the devil and he will flee you. Balance and wisdom are crucial in our assesment of spiritual opposition, to assign too much or too little credit to the reality of demonic activity is to err greatly.

Be not afraid. Be aware not preoccupied.

Gods sovereign purpose is to protect us.

1 John 4:4
                             

5-As believers in Christ, we do not fight for victory, we fight from victory. In Christ's power we are powerful and we are victors in Christ but thanks be to God, we walk in His triunph.

Ephesians 6
1 John 4:4
Rev 12:11
James 4:7-8
                         
                           
This series has several parts to it, I will continue to give notes and links to following sermons so that you can stand strong against the enemy and find peace, protection, and love in the arms of our Lord and savior Jesus Christ, by the grace of  ever merciful God.
God bless you all! 

Outrageously Good Paleo Maple & Blueberry Cranberry Muffins

Good morning sweetpea's!

I promised some tasty treats and I is here to delivah! Hehheh
But first, a little bit of me.
My son has left for a month long trip to Indonesia, and as per his usual, he waited til the last minute to get stuff done. He did start early but faltered near the end. It came to packing and travel snacks; this is where we are polar opposites. 
I am a planner and I like to be well ready, waaaaaay before hand. Like, packed suitcases 2 weeks before with lists, photocopies of important documents, snacks & food stuffs prepped for a quick throw it all together and bake it up the night before, and all meds/necessities Ziploc-ed and good to go. I even buy the book(s) I am going to read 2 weeks before and torture myself by keeping them in plain view, while not allowing myself to even have a sneak peak read. It makes the travel day extra fun to look forward to, along with the actual trip of course. 
Not my son. 
We had planned on pre-prep a week before, he said all was fine. Yeah right.
2 days before, I get a call with a need for help, suitcase, locks, Ziploc bags, face cloths, and drum roll please...
"Mom, do you have any yummy snacks for travelling? Like those muffin thingy's you were talking about?"
My son, 23 and still flying by the seat of his pants. He also trains a lot and lkes healthier and gf options. 
Good thing I had just made myself a batch of muffins and had frozen cookie dough on hand-just in case. Turns out neither items made it to flight, apparently both were too tasty to resist. He even exchanged one of the muffins for a free java jolt from one of his friends who works at a coffee shop. She texted him a while later exclaiming they're "soooo good" tastiness. 
I guess next time he'll plan better. Hahahaha hahahaha- whoo, that was a good one. ;) 
This is my son and I, two days before take off:
                 
We were having fun being silly, taking selfies or togethers? Meh. You get the point.
                     
We caught up on life moments, cracked jokes, talked street food and safety stuff for travel. We were both excited for his first, long, far away, travel adventure. I prayed so hard for his safety and continue to do so, he landed safely and has begun to have fun. I need a vacation. Maybe baking travel muffins will kick-start my next get away. Sooner than later, I hope. Pb, we need to get this wagon train a movin'.
Okay, back to food.
Well, this Paleo muffin recipe is one I make the day before I get on a plane. There are no refined sugars, no soy, no dairy, and it is vegetarian. I like that it has loads of fiber, good fats, protein, and tastes outrageously good. I kid you not, whenever I go to Poppa Bear, these come on flight with me. Pb likes to munch on the remaining one's and looks forward to eating these nom nom's of delight. He always asks if I am bringing them with when I come see him. 
They are not a light and fluffy, cake muffin, like you are used to. These are more compact, smaller, more dense, and nutritionally sound-also filling. They are a perfect travel food and have helped me when stuck places where allergy-free items are not available. 
This recipe comes from my mother, she found a recipe somewhere, didn't like it, and gave it a great makeover. 
Typical pastry Chef, I get it from her honestly. 
I further tweaked the recipe, I reduced the eggs and upped the flax. These are not nut-free, they contain almonds, you can try with different nuts if you like. 
Here goes, and as always there are pics to guide you down below.
           

PALEO MAPLE BLUEBERRY & CRANBERRY MUFFINS

Ingredients:
1 Cup Almond flour aka ground almonds
1/2 Cup Flax seed ground 
2 Flax "eggs" (mix 1 Tbsp ground flax with 3 Tbsp water, mix & let sit for 5 minutes until gummy) 
1/2 Cup Coconut flour
2 tsp Baking powder
2 Tbsp Walnut oil
2 Tbsp Coconut oil
2 Eggs
1/2 tsp Sea salt
3/4 Cup Maple syrup grade B
3/4 Cup Blueberries frozen
1/2 Cup Cranberries frozen and chopped in half (can add up to 3/4 Cup) 

Method:
-Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
-Keep fruit until very end, do not add until all else is mixed, use from frozen
-Line 12 muffin tins with paper liners
-In a bowl mix dry ingredients
-In a separate bowl mix wet ingredients
-Mix together until well combined, add in frozen fruit, stir until just incorporated. 
-Drop by large scoopful into liners and once full, place in middle rack of preheated oven
-Bake for 20 minutes, turn tray halfway and bake for another 15-20 minutes. 
-Only remove from oven when golden brown, allow to cool in tray.
-Remove from tray and enjoy!
-Store in an airtight container in fridge for up to 5 days, can freeze up to 2-3 weeks. 
        
              Mixing flax eggs to sit as I prep the dry and then wet ingredients.
        
I mix with a fork and quickly incorporate the frozen fruit, I don't want the dough to change to a blue colour so no over mixing. Which btw, is why people often end up with rock hard muffins in regular, gluten-filled baking. Over stirring toughens up gluten proteins and gives a dense hard brick muffin. Chef tip of the day ;)
       
These get a light golden brown on them, they are perfect when they look like the above pic on the left. It is as I stated before, a more dense, not high baking, empty calories, sugar laden fluff.
They are healthy but remember that these are high in good fats, and too much of anything is not a good thing. 
Eat max 1 or 2 per day, you will be fine.
     
Bonne app├ętit!
Any questions or comments can be left down below, I like hearing from you, and feel free to test these on your next trip and tell us all about it! 
Abba bless you & yours...