Wellness encompasses not just your physical health, but also your mental, spiritual, emotional, and environmental wellness. Meal Planning and Prepping is a great way to take care of your physical wellness by feeding your body meals prepared with thought and love.
Meal Planning and Meal Prep are closely related, but still a bit different. Meal Planning is the time you spend writing a menu and the accompanying grocery list. Meal Prepping is taking a few hours one day a week to prepare meals and ingredients for the rest of the week. Getting in the habit of planning ahead saves not only time but money too!
It’s a great way to ensure you are getting well rounded meals and no veggies go to waste. You will have virtually no clean up throughout the rest of the week, and you can even plan and prep for weeknight dinners where the kids can help- it’s easy to add ingredients to the pan or crockpot!
The basics of menu planning are fairly easy. Our menu is a mostly Paleo/Primal way of eating. We use a variety of veggies and proteins totally customizable to your tastes! This menu feeds 1 person for 5 days.
Here we go!
Once you are home with your groceries the fun begins! Clear out the kitchen and start with a clean workspace. You may need to expand out to the dining room table, too! These next directions are geared specifically to this menu. You will have to plan accordingly for future menus, but the concept is the same. Multitask and plan! You will be successful!!
There are plenty of options to change the meals to your liking. Substitutions are easy once you have a solid framework for your meals! There is no limit as to what you can make for your meals.
How to and tips!
21 Day Fix - No cook meals!!
Detailed directions for our meal plan
Grocery list for our menu
September is the best month for farming here in western Montana. We are at the tail end of fruits and melons, cucumbers and summer squash are still going strong, and winter squash is coming into the markets as well. And tomatoes!! Oh the tomatoes… For our September Salad of the Month we are featuring Farm Hand Farm (@farmhandfarm on instagram and facebook), an small urban farm located in Missoula. Adelaide and her partner John (along with their two dogs, cat, and chickens) grow flowers, medicinal + edible herbs, tomatoes, peppers, and assorted veggies, plus plant starts in spring and skin salves in winter
As a kid I never liked tomatoes. They were bland and mealy and I just couldn’t understand why anyone would enjoy that. But then I had an heirloom tomato. To say it was life changing was an understatement!! Heirloom tomatoes come in a variety of shapes, sizes and colors. Teeny tiny sungolds are like candy in the garden and very rarely make it inside the house. Green Zebras are green and yellow when ripe making for an burst of unexpected color in any dish.
Not only are tomatoes super tasty, the pack a punch when it comes to their health boosting properties. Tomatoes contain all four major carotenoids: alpha- and beta-carotene, lutein, and lycopene. According to a study from Ohio State University, when tomatoes are eaten along with healthier fats, like avocado or olive oil, the body's absorption of the carotenoid phytochemicals in tomatoes can increase by two to 15 times!
Olive or Avocado Oil
Salt + Pepper
Cut up your tomatoes, dress with the oil of your choice, season to taste with S+P. That’s it. Keep it simple and enjoy the flavors of summer.
Wanting something a bit more?
Caprese Salad A classic with sliced tomatoes layered between slices of mozzarella and basil, dressed with balsamic vinegar and olive oil.
Greek Style Salad Add in chopped cucumber, red onion, capers, olives, roasted red bell peppers, and some feta cheese.
Creamy Cucumber Salad Sliced cucumbers, tomatoes, and red onions dressed with sour cream or Greek yogurt and fresh herbs. Season to taste with S+P
Watermelon! Watermelon, tomato, basil, oil, and S+P. Add some feta if you’re feeling fancy. Yeah, this would like a weird combo, but it’s sooooo good!!
Chickpea and Avocado Roast or fry chickpeas with cumin, turmeric, paprika, and S+P. Toss with chopped tomatoes and cubed avocado. Dress with oil and fresh chopped herbs.
However you choose to enjoy your tomatoes, always pick locally grown for the freshest and most flavorful selection!!
Today is National Read a Book Day! I know that everyone is not an avid book reader like me, but reading is super important for our brain development. Unlike television or the internet.. (I'm looking at you youtube...) when reading you have to activate your imagination to bring characters and concepts to life.
Here at Primal Practice we talk a lot about health. We believe that there are fundamentals that you must do each day to maximize your health and thrive through life, rather than just survive. These fundamentals are for everyone, no matter their age. At different stages of our lives the fundamentals may be implemented differently but the concepts don't actually change. These are movement, nutrition, a fully connected nervous system, and a healthy mindset.
In honor of this national day, I wanted to share some of my favorite reads in the topics of our health fundamentals. If we can start to nail down these daily activities our bodies will definitely thank us!
Movement: Exercising through your Pregnancy by James Clapp; Deskbound by Kelly Starrett
Nutrition: Real Food for Pregnancy by Lily Nichols; The Primal Blueprint by Mark Sisson
Nervous System: Well Adjusted Babies by Jennifer Barham-Floreani; The Reality Check by Heidi Haavik
Mindset: The Fourth Trimester by Kimberley Ann Johnson ; Daring Greatly by Brene Brown
As you can see there are 2 per category. One is specifically for pregnancy and postpartum and the other is for the general population. At the office we have nearly all these books on the shelf that you can borrow for up to 2 weeks, so there is no excuse to not get reading!
Read something great? Leave a comment with what is grabbed your attention and let me know, I'm always looking for recommendations!
Peace, Love and Wellness
August was National Breastfeeding Awareness Month, and up until 4 months ago I could only imagine what mothers go through when trying to breastfeed. Now, I’m part of the crew. And to be honest, it started out hard, like really hard. My nipples hurt and bled, and every time Coen latched it was intensely painful. I could definitely see why Mum’s turn to formula. But it got better. My nipples became hardier, and we learnt together how to work as a team. Everyone’s experience, just like any part of motherhood, is completely their own. Some people will take to breastfeeding like ducks to water, others will be unable to breastfeed at all. Getting the support you need is imperative to having a successful experience, for whatever capacity you want to breastfeed for. These options may seem like no brainers, but I’m going to throw them out anyway.
See a lactation consultant. These women are trained specifically to help you and your baby. They know all the tips and tricks, can check for tongue ties and can literally be the difference between sticking with breastfeeding or not. Consultants who are certified through the International Board of Lactation Consultants are extensively trained to give you all the help you need to successfully breastfeed.
See a Chiropractor. I had a 3 week old come into my practice earlier in August, who was struggling to get enough sucking power and had a weak latch. Her momma was worried that she wouldn’t be able to continue breastfeeding as she was struggling with the pain and a feeling of failure. After an assessment, I did concur that she had a weak sucking reflex but there was no issue with her jaw. She did however, have a subluxation (spinal misalignment) in the upper neck and needed some cranial work done. After her gentle adjustment, she latched right on (with minimal pain to mum) and went to town. This is not an uncommon experience in Chiropractic offices. This article goes into more depth, but the basis of the adjustment is that removing pressure from the nerves allows function to flow and a better connection between the brain and the body.
Listen to your Intuition. Even if you’re a brand new Momma, that voice inside you and your gut feeling is worth listening to. If you feel something is wrong, it probably is, and you should reach out. If you are feeling unheard by the people you are working with, find new people. Never discount your intuition as it may be the first sign you recognize that something is a little off.
Whatever capacity you breastfed for, I commend you. It is such a great thing not only for your baby but for yourself as well. Keep up the great work and if you ever need anything, don’t hesitate to reach out.
Peace, Love and Wellness
Each month we share a recipe featuring a local product or farmer! This month we are featuring Hindu Hillbilly, a family owned apiary just west of Alberton, MT. It is their mission to strive for environmental sustainability in their beekeeping practices, to educate and foster understanding and appreciation of honey bees through community outreach and youth programs, and to provide the purest quality raw honey and handcrafted honey skin care products from their hives to our community. They are proud to be members of a growing community of small farmers dedicated to producing local and sustainable products. There are many benefits of local honey. It's been said to aid in allergy relief, heal wounds, and is just plain tasty.
Summer is a season with a bounty of fruit. We are lucky to have so many local farmers and producers in our little piece of paradise that makes a summer salad that much sweeter.
This fruit plate is easy to assemble with an assortment of local fruits. We used Flathead cherries, strawberries, blackberries, blueberries, and huckleberries! Antioxidant and anthocyanin rich foods help with inflammation and helping you heal from summer fun. The ricotta is from local creamery Tucker Family Farm located in Victor, MT and made from sheep milk. Many people with cow dairy sensitivities are able to digest goat and sheep milk without much difficulty.
Honey Ricotta Dip
1 cup ricotta
1/4 cup honey
pinch of salt
Combine the honey and ricotta in the blender. You may have to scrape the sides down periodically. Blend until completely smooth. You will know it's right when the contents are all whirring around easily. Pour into a bowl or container to keep in the fridge. As it cools it will set up a bit. Plate up your favorite fruits and sprinkle the dip with sea salt to serve.
What's your favorite summer treat?
Our July salad is all about edible flowers!! Full Bushel Farm is an urban garden specializing in edible flowers, medicinal plants, and cut arrangements.
Edible flowers are a fun addition to your summer salads. They are easy to grow and fun for kids of all ages. You can even dry edible flowers for a fun floral confetti all year round.
This salad is a simple mix of salad greens by farm friends County Rail Farm dressed lightly with avocado oil and apple cider vinegar. You can use any type of vinegar that you prefer. (Infused vinegars are easy to make and a great way to use up summer fruits!) Dressing your salad before adding the toppings ensures every little bit is coated equally and leaves your toppings plenty of room to shine!
We kept the toppings simple with seasonal fresh currants and edible flowers. The sweet-tart tanginess is perfect with the subtle flavor and intense color of the flowers.
Pizza on the side is optional, but encouraged.
Eat well. Enjoy yourself. Have fun!
Spring has slipped into Summer and the Farmers Markets are bursting with fresh produce. The early season markets are full of hearty greens and bright crisp radishes, all able to survive the cold and unpredictable Western Montana Spring. With a little patience and a lot of sunshine, summer yields the sweetest berries and tastiest tomatoes.
One of my favorite farmers at the market is Country Rail Farm. Their tomatoes will make you weep tears of joy when they first grace the market table. (I am a hard core tomato fan!!) One of the many things that you may know County Rail for is their salad mix. You can find it at many local stores and restaurants during growing season. We are so excited to feature them as our June Salad of the Month!!
You can find out more about Tracy and Margaret, their farm pups, and their farm here.
This month’s salad is for sure a new favorite! The sweet strawberries and salty feta play off each other so wonderfully. I dressed this simply with a balsamic reduction and avocado oil, salt and pepper of course.
County Rail Farm Strawberry and Feta Salad
This simple salad is best assembled and dressed on your plate. The greens are so light that the heavy toppings can easily disappear in a serving dish. In staying true to the seasonality of this dish I made a morel pizza with green onions and it sure was tasty!! Enjoy your salad and don’t be afraid to experiment with a little fruit. Melons, berries, or citrus- it’s all good in my book!!
Have a great week & buen provecho!
School is out, the days are long and we want to help improve life for your kiddos. As patients in the office, you all know the benefits of regular care and how good you feel after a visit with Liz or Gina. Chiro care has been shown to help with not just physical ailments, but with mental challenges too.
ADD/ADHD and Spectrum diagnoses are particularly responsive to chiropractic care. That's why we are giving away a summer care plan to one lucky kiddo! Leave school fidgety and unfocussed, return in the fall a better and more focused student.
We are accepting applications now through June 8, 2018. To apply for this scholarship CLICK HERE and answer some simple questions. Please share this link with friends, co-workers, and family members. Let's help out some kiddos with gentle non-invasive care. *Care Plan will begin the week of June 11th and end the week of September 10th.
Our Salad of the Month for May isn't even a salad at all! It's a wrap :)
Wraps are a great way to combine veggies for a nutritious lunch on the go. This recipe uses a collard wrap for a bit of extra greens, but you can always wrap yours in a tortilla or flatbread.
Green Source is a brick and mortar shop on the Hip Strip in Missoula, Montana. Missoula's premier 100% Organic Juice Bar and Cafe providing Missoula with premium quality organic smoothies, fresh pressed juices, and raw live food made with local ingredients to increase the health and vitality in our community. Wherever possible, they source all our fair from family farms, as they are committed to their preservation. Green Source values local, healthy, and sustainable food chains.
To make your own Salad Wrap:
Gather veggies cut into sticks or grated, something soft like hummus or a nut pesto, and your wrap. This one uses a collard green, homemade almond hummus, carrot, red peppers, cucumbers. I love to add olives to mine, or even cheese for a punch of flavor! Spread your soft spread onto the wrap, top with veggies and roll.
Little ones will love to be a part of making their own Salad Wraps. And the grownups will enjoy eating them too!
What's your favorite wrap filling?
Spring is in the air and that means fresh tender greens. In Montana, our winters can reach a little longer and a little colder than other parts making Spring a welcome sight for all. Young greens add interest to a salad as well as packing a nutritional punch. Pea shoots are a good source of beta carotene, vitamin C, folate, and fiber. Radishes are another harbinger of spring, filling the early season farmers market tables with Folate, fiber, riboflavin, and potassium, as well as good amounts of copper, vitamin B6, magnesium, manganese, and calcium.
What better way to top a fresh springy salad than with a dressing full of locally made goodness?!? The Cashew Turmeric Dressing features Moxie Nosh, our featured business for the month of April.
Moxie Nosh is a values based brand with a vision. Almonds and Cashews are the building blocks for the flavors. Moxie Nosh, meaning "bold food" was created with an intention to help make healthier food choices. Every person deserves to eat real food that nourishes the body and fuels the soul. Naturally free of sugar, hydrogenated oils, preservatives, gluten and dairy their nut butters are infused with coconut oil and various spices that create bold flavor that makes eating healthy fun.
Cashews are packed with vitamins E, K, and B6, along with the minerals copper, phosphorus, zinc, magnesium, iron, and selenium. All of which are important for maintaining good bodily function! We added some inflammation fighting (among other things!) turmeric for a nutritious and flavorful dressing.
Pea Shoot Salad with Turmeric Cashew Dressing
Prep time: 10min Cook Time: 2min Total Time: 12min
For the salad:
2 cups baby greens or mustard greens if you like it spicy!
1 cup pea shoots chopped into 1” pieces
2-3 radishes thinly sliced
2 spring onions, slices
Whatever else is in season and looks delicious!
For the dressing:
1/4c Moxie Nosh Cashew Butter
1/4c lemon juice
1/4c extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic (crushed or finely grated if not blending)
2 tsp turmeric powder
Make your dressing. I mixed by hand in a small mason jar, and then shook it up for good measure. Make your salad with all the fresh and tasty local ingredients popping up at your farmers market! Dandelion greens are also available this time of year, make sure yours are unsprayed!!
Dress your salad and garnish with fresh cracked pepper.