Wednesday, January 26, 2011

#1 Green Shakes for All!

My favorite breakfast shake is a pint of this yummy concoction. After I emerge from my yoga/meditation practice and/or a good workout, I float to the kitchen and throw the ingredients into my blender then sip this healthy goodness as I prepare for the rest of my day!

Lauren's #1 Green Shake
It's #1 because those are the rough measurements for everything in this recipe, along with how much it totally rocks as far as taste goes!

1 half of a banana
1 half of an apple
1 handful frozen blueberries
1 teaspoon chia seeds
1 teaspoon spirulina
1 heaping teaspoon almond butter
1 cup coconut water (or filtered water)
1 small handful goji berries


Blend in blender until smooth. If you don't have the above ingredients, improvise with other things that you have in the house! My shake is NEVER the same day to day. I switch it up using peanut or hemp butter (in place of almond butter), flaxseeds in place of (or along with) chia seeds, filtered water or no-sugar added juice (in place of coconut water)...etc. Have fun with your shakes and get creative. If I have kale or spinach in the house I'll always add some leaves of it to this recipe for extra green power!

My favorite little guy, Charlie, (to the right), loves his green shakes, as you can clearly see on his face. He enjoys them each morning with peanut butter (in place of the almond butter). He and his Mom have been blending up my green shake every morning and they both can't get enough!

FYI: Chia seeds, goji berries and spirulina are all safe and totally amazing for little ones. It warms my heart that Charlie's on such healthy shakes at such a young age!!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

It's Peanut Butta Jelly Time!

I just want to mention how fantastic a peanut butter and jelly sandwich can be. It is not only fast and inexpensive - but healthy too. All natural, organic peanut butter, a swipe of your favorite jelly on yummy bread is delicious! You really can’t beat it. I enjoy PB & J's for breakfast or lunch on the regular. They are also my staple meal to pack with me when I know I'll be on the go.

BREAD: I hate to break this to you, but bread ain't good for you.  Bread is processed and loaded with lots of nonsense that doesn't do our body good.  Be sure that if you do have a little bread in your diet that it's a fresh sprouted bread, or at least one that has very few ingredients (that you can actually pronounce).  Beware of gluten free ones, too.  They can be packed with added ingredients and contain a lot of sugar.  Get creative with your PB & J's and try them on a rice cake, make a quesadilla with a wrap, or even between a "healthier" English Muffin!  

PEANUT BUTTER: Plain, all natural, organic peanut butter provides a good source of protein and healthy (mono-unsaturated) fats. Healthier alternatives include those that don't contain any sweetener (or a natural sweetener such as honey or molasses), and flaxseed enriched. Flaxseed gives the butter some added flavor while providing omega 3 and 6 fatty acids. These oils promote cardiovascular health and joint support. Plain, unsalted, unsweetened CHUNKY peanut butter is my favorite.  However, I enjoy experimenting with other nut/seed butters and encourage you to do the same.

JELLY: Fruit preserves are the best choice here as they contain pieces of whole fruit and, therefore, more nutrients. Always look for those containing the least amount of sugar. For extra antioxidants, try preserves from berry sources. Berries are a VERY dirty bunch, so it's always best to buy organic when possible. Sugar-free varieties are NOT the better solution when it comes to jelly (along with other sugar-free products, for that matter). They contain harmful chemicals that will only leave your body hungry for more food because your meal will be lacking what the food was missing and confused because we aren't supposed to consume foreign chemicals. Long story short, opt for all natural, organic jelly when possible.  I love mashing fresh organic strawberries with a little honey to make my own jelly. 

Just typing this with that lovely picture above has me tempted to make a half of a PB & J right now! In the meantime, I'm going to annoy my neighbors by rocking out to the banana performing the peanut butta jelly song.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

The Conscious Connection - 3HC Interview

The other night I had the pleasure of meeting Anthony, the head publisher and founder of the Conscious Connection. We immediately got along since we share a similar passion for enlightened living. He interviewed me about 3 Healthy Chicks! Please click on link below-

3 Healthy Chicks: An Interview with Lauren Forney

The Conscious Connection is a digital magazine for 21st century cultural creatives. They represent the next great leap in the evolution of media. Their vision is an enlightened world where human beings recognize their inherent oneness with one another and can become empowered to co-create a future of peace & social harmony.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Lauren's Healthier Chocolate Chip Cookies

I crave cookies ALL the time. However, most cookies are loaded with way too much SUGAR. So almost all of the time, I have to suffer through my cookie cravings (and drink lots of water to soothe the sweet craving!). 

I've been hard at work playing with different recipes I've collected, tweaking them here and there trying to find the right recipe...and I FINALLY figured it out. Below is my healthier alternative to chocolate chip cookies. The rolled oats, spelt flour, nuts, chia seeds and maple syrup make these cookies a healthy, vegan and totally delicious treat. Don't let the word healthy fool you into thinking these aren't amazing!

Lauren's Healthy Chocolate Chip Cookies
(Makes about 18 cookies, takes about 25 minutes to make!)

1 cup rolled oats (take 3/4 and process in blender or food processor into coarse flour)
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons coconut oil
1/2 cup tablespoons maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup grain sweetened chocolate chips or vegan carob chips
1/4 cup chopped nuts (optional)
1 cup spelt flour
2 tablespoons chia seeds
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon sea salt

Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper or oil lightly. Position one of your oven’s racks in the center. Preheat oven to 350 F. Process 3/4 of the oats in a food processor or blender until they are the consistency of coarse flour.

In a small bowl, mix the oil, maple syrup, chia seeds and vanilla until well combined; set aside and let sit so that the chia seeds enlarge. In a large bowl, stir together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and ground oats until well blended and then stir in the chocolate chips and nuts, if using. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix with a spatula until everything is well blended. Scoop out a tablespoon of the batter onto the prepared cookie sheets. Flatten the cookies slightly with damp fingers.

Bake, one cookie sheet at a time on the center rack, for 11 minutes (depending on your stove). Rotate the cookie sheet from front to back to ensure even baking. Bake 5 to 6 minutes more or until the cookies are golden around the edges. Remove from the oven and place the cookie sheet on a rack. Let the cookies cool on the cookie sheets for 5 to 6 minutes and then transfer them to a cooling rack.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Natural Awakenings January Issue Featuring 3HCs!!

3 Healthy Chicks are starting the year off right, with a fresh write up about us in NJ's Natural Awakenings Magazine!! Snag a copy of this FREE informative health magazine the next time you're out grocery shopping and turn to page 9 to see us!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Phanfood Recipe Publication

Many of you already know, I LOVE PHISH! Please read below about Phanfood, a book just published with one of my recipes in it. It featured one of my quinoa recipes, Slave to the Quinoa Salad. (Listen to Slave to the Traffic Light, the song its referring to, from 3/8/09).  Terra, from 3 Healthy Chicks, who is also a longtime phan, has a slammin' recipe featured in the book as well. The creators, Taraleigh & Pete are two super cool phans themselves with whom I feel so lucky to have connected with. Holla at me if you would like the recipe!!!

About PhanFood:
Phish fans have a history of creativity that follows them wherever they go – at shows, on the road, in the lots, and in between shows. And somewhere in there, we all find the time to eat like champs and enjoy the gifts of the earth around us! With that in mind, a cookbook is being created to share the collective recipes that we have all made and shared in our travels following the greatest touring band.

PhanFood will feature appetizers, salads, soups, sandwiches, entrees, desserts, drinks (with and without alcohol) and a variety of other concoctions that Phish fans enjoy while they are in the lots, at the site, or just sitting at home waiting for the next tour to be announced.

Keeping in step with the Phish community’s efforts to give back to the areas from where they come, PhanFood is a wholly non-profit endeavor, with all net profits being donated to regional food banks in the cities where Phish plays each tour.

PhanFood is the brain child of Taraleigh Silberberg (The Healthy Hippie, Burlington, VT) and created with Pete Mason (Author of Phanart: The Art of the Phans of Phish, Albany, NY). Our goal is to benefit the Phish community and to give back to the communities we visit as we follow Phish to the next great show!

Monday, January 3, 2011

DIY Cinnamon/Ginger Tea for Pregnancy

Quite a few of my friends, family and colleagues are pregnant, and a few have asked about what teas they can enjoy safely. Here is a bit of information for them below, with a simple and delicious DIY recipe below that's good enough for even us folks who don't have a bun in the oven!

It is widely known that caffeine and alcohol should be avoided while pregnant to minimize the risk of birth defects. What is not as widely known is that many herbal teas can be detrimental to a pregnancy as well, especially if consumed in excess. Technically, herbs are forms of drugs which can be as potent as certain medications. Unfortunately, not enough studies have been conducted to examine the full effects of certain herbs on the unborn baby. It is important to keep in mind that even the teas that are presumed safe for consumption during pregnancy should not be consumed in excess. One to three cups a day should suffice.

Herbal Teas Considered Safe During Pregnancy

The following list of herbs are considered to be safe to drink while pregnant:


Herbal Teas Considered Unsafe During Pregnancy
Certain herbs can potentially stimulate the uterus and unintentionally induce miscarriage or labor if consumed in large amounts. These include:

licorice root
raspberry leaf
nettle leaf

Raspberry leaf tea has been suggested to help strengthen the uterus in preparation for labor and delivery. Although this hasn't been scientifically proven, raspberry leaf tea can be consumed near the end of the pregnancy (after 38 weeks). Talk more about it with your Doctor.

*It is important to note that most of the herbs above can still be eaten to spice up foods. These herbs are much more concentrated in teas, making them more potent and dangerous in this form.

"Pregnancy Teas"
The makers of pregnancy teas market their products as an aid for those who are pregnant. It is important to note that these teas are not necessarily clinically proven to be safe to the unborn baby when consumed in large amounts. Although many of the pregnancy teas sold in health food stores usually all contain ingredients which may be safe, it is still wise to double check the ingredients listed on the box.

Skip Green Tea
There is some form of debate regarding the safety of green tea consumption during pregnancy. Some evidence suggests that green tea may actually decrease folic acid absorption. Folic acid is essential during pregnancy to help prevent neural tube birth defects in the baby. It might be a good idea to avoid green teas during pregnancy just in case, or at the very least, consume very little of it.

Do It Yourself Ginger Tea
It's best to consider making your own concoction for tea while pregnant. Add honey, fruit juices, lemon rinds, cinnamon, or cloves to boiled water. (Never make a tea from any plant unless you're 100 percent sure what it is and that you can safely take it while you're pregnant.) Not only will ginger tea help reduce nausea, it will also keep you hydrated! You may wish to add a little lemon or honey to the tea -- many women find lemon also helps to reduce nausea, and the honey can improve the taste and may also soothe your stomach. As with anything while you're pregnant, it is advised that you consult a medical professional before taking ginger to ease the nausea and vomiting related to pregnancy.

Cinnamon-Ginger Tea
Put a few cups of filtered water in a pot on the stove. Depending on how spicy you like your tea, take either 1-2 inches of ginger root and peel the skin. Either slice or grate the ginger, and add it to water. Bring water to a boil. Once it boils, turn off heat but cover and let steep for 5-10 minutes. Add a dash of cinnamon to the pot. Drink as is or feel free to add dollop of honey or squirt of lemon to your liking. Relax and enjoy-

Sunday, January 2, 2011

My Phun New Years Weekend!

HAPPY 2011!!!!

Due to the lack of nothing going on the past decade of New Years eve's for me, I decided to go all out and spend a long weekend in NYC to celebrate and go all out. First, I attended my good friend's wedding which was filled with smiles and love, such a nice time! It's always so nice to see two people genuinely be happy together. Sparks were surrounding them each time they would look at each other throughout the night. New Years Eve my best friend from college and I attended a yoga class at Laughing Lotus and then enjoyed a kirtan with the amazing Bhagavan Das. There is nothing more powerful than chanting with others, especially to ring in the New Year!!! Then I spent the first night of 2011 at MSG enjoying my favorite live band, Phish. It was a fantastic show and a great way to kick off the New Year! Above is Phish's performance right before the ball dropped, and is the perfect example of why I love them SO much!!! Phish shows radiate amazing energy and that's what keeps me continuously going back for more. I can never get enough of those guys. Take a moment and see for yourself. They rock my world!!!!!!!

I hope you enjoyed your New Years!