Nourishing Meals: 365 Whole Foods, Allergy-free Recipes For Healing Your Family One Meal At A Time by Alissa SegerstenNourishing Meals: 365 Whole Foods, Allergy-free Recipes For Healing Your Family One Meal At A Time by Alissa Segersten

Nourishing Meals: 365 Whole Foods, Allergy-free Recipes For Healing Your Family One Meal At A Time

byAlissa Segersten, Tom Malterre

Paperback | October 11, 2016

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From two popular bloggers and leaders in the functional medicine movement, here’s the ultimate guide to eating healthfully as a family—a simple, practical cookbook that shows how easy it is to ditch processed foods one meal at a time with 365 delicious, whole food-based, allergen-free recipes that the entire family will love.
It can be daunting to live a whole foods lifestyle in today’s busy world—even more so to prepare plant-rich, allergen-free meals that’ll get the whole family around the table. Popular blogger Ali Segersten and functional medicine expert Tom Malttere are a team devoted to teaching their children—and readers—the importance of living a whole foods lifestyle. Nourishing Meals makes it easy and fun with dishes that burst with flavor, such as their Cherry Pecan Salad, Butternut Squash and Pinto Bean Enchiladas, Chipotle-Lime Roasted Chicken, and Banana Coconut Cream Pie.
Every recipe in the book is free of the most common allergens: gluten, soy, eggs, and dairy, as well as refined sugar. And these dishes are designed to appeal to everyone, including vegan, vegetarian, seafood, and meat-eaters. In addition to wonderful food, Ali and Tom offer easy, doable steps to help you change your family's health, tips for making the transition easier, and ways to get the kids excited about wholesome foods. They map out the best foods and recipes for every stage of having a family, from pre-conception and pregnancy through each year of a child's life. And they explain in accessible terms what makes their recipes so effective for achieving optimal health. Originally self-published with an avid following, this edition will feature more than 30 new recipes, and many of the original recipes have been updated. This new edition will also include 100 beautiful all-new food photos featured in two inserts.
With an easy, tasty recipe for every day of the year, it’s never been simpler to adopt a healthy, whole foods lifestyle!
Alissa Segersten is a cooking instructor and author of the food blog,, empowering people with cooking skills and knowledge of whole foods so that they may reconnect with pleasure in eating delicious, nourishing food. Tom Malterre, MS, CN, is a certified nutritionist who holds two degrees in nutritional sciences, ...
Title:Nourishing Meals: 365 Whole Foods, Allergy-free Recipes For Healing Your Family One Meal At A TimeFormat:PaperbackDimensions:528 pages, 10 × 8 × 1.3 inPublished:October 11, 2016Publisher:Potter/Ten Speed/Harmony/RodaleLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0451495926

ISBN - 13:9780451495921

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Rated 5 out of 5 by from Love it! Co-worker of mine just purchased this book and she let me try a few of the recipes. So far each one has been amazing. Definitely going to purchase for myself!
Date published: 2017-04-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent resource An excellent book full of whole food meal and snack ideas for the whole family. Love these two authors.
Date published: 2016-11-13

Read from the Book

Why Whole Foods?The definition of the word whole is “a thing that is complete in itself.” When we eat foods in their whole form, we get all the nutrients, carbohydrates, proteins, and fats contained therein in perfect balance. These compounds act synergistically to orchestrate all the reactions in our bodies. When some nutrients are missing, though, the body cannot function properly; and when many nutrients are missing for an extended period of time, the body can become diseased. Obesity, chronic inflammation, food allergies, infertility, and many other diseases stem from the body’s being starved of essential nutrients—nutrients that are lacking in a diet of processed foods.Food Is a Signaling SubstanceIt is easy to lose sight of the reasons we eat. We feel hungry, and immediately we think of calories—of eating to fill up. The real reasons our bodies need food go beyond the ingestion of calories, though. Food, by nature, is a signaling substance.The chemical composition of food—its vitamins and phytochemicals—sends signals to our cells designating how the genes will express themselves; this means that every time we eat, we are telling our bodies which genes to turn on and which genes to turn off. Did you know that there is more gene expression within two hours of eating than at any other time of the day? This is the fascinating world of nutrigenomics—the idea that food is information not merely calories.Processed Foods and Gene ExpressionWith an understanding of gene expression, you can see that when you eat a diet of processed foods full of chemicals and devoid of nutrients, you are telling your genes to “turn on” for certain diseases you may be predisposed to. On the other hand, when you eat a whole foods diet rich in plants, the opposite is possible.Research has indicated that a plant-rich whole foods diet can communicate to your genes in a way that may prevent and/or alter disease progression. For example, a child could have the genetic makeup that predisposes him to type 1 diabetes. With a diet of processed foods devoid of nutrients and high in gluten, dairy, sugar, and nonfood constituents, he could develop this disease in childhood. If the mother has a gluten-free, dairy-free, nutrient-dense diet from the time of conception, the baby would more likely not develop diabetes.If you want to lower the risk of developing allergies and disease, then you can change the way your genes are being expressed by eliminating all processed foods and eating a nutrient-dense, organic whole foods diet.What Constitutes a Processed Food?There is a lot of debate about what actually constitutes a “processed food.” In reality, there is a continuum of processing of foods that ranges from naturally preserved foods (like home-canned tomatoes or frozen berries), to completely denatured foods (such as high fructose corn syrup). Foods that undergo minimal processing can still be nutritious; these include extra-virgin olive oil, virgin coconut oil, and raw apple cider vinegar. Highly processed foods include man-made pseudo-foods such as artificial sweeteners and hydrogenated oils. Additionally, processed foods often have nonfood constituents, like bleaching agents, solvents, and alkalizing agents, as well as often being fortified with synthetic vitamins. For our purposes here, processed foods are those that are highly processed—that is, those that are entirely man-made or have had parts removed or added, such as the refining of corn into high fructose corn syrup or the bleaching and enriching of white flour.What’s in a Chicken Sandwich?Take an unassuming grilled chicken sandwich with lettuce, tomato, and melted cheese—something you might choose when dining out. Let’s throw in a side of fries and a diet soda. Seems pretty straightforward, right?What you don’t see are the large amounts of chemicals that were used on the genetically engineered grains or the arsenic that was added to the feed the chicken ate, whose meat now contains those chemicals, and the antibiotics that were added prophylactically to its feed. You don’t see the pesticide residues on the lettuce or tomato—chemicals that are never tested for human safety. You don’t see rBGH, a genetically engineered hormone that was injected into the cows to produce more milk and is now in that cheese.What about the toxic combination of artificial sweeteners and caffeine in your soft drink? It has neuroexcitatory toxins that can kill brain cells and cause migraines and joint pain. How about a little sodium acid pyrophosphate to maintain color, or dimethylpolysiloxane to prevent foaming in your fries? Unfortunately, these chemicals are in most seemingly “natural” fries when you dine out.Let’s not forget the bun. Not only is it made from refined wheat—white flour— that can be highly inflammatory, but it also most likely contains ingredients you can’t pronounce. If you wouldn’t keep a jar of these unpronounceable ingredients in your kitchen cabinet, then they don’t belong in your diet.Loss of NutrientsNot only are many processed foods full of genetically engineered ingredients and unnatural chemicals, but they are high in calories and low in nutrients. A diet of processed foods essentially starves your body while at the same time causing weight gain, as the body, in its innate wisdom, keeps demanding more food in order to get the necessary vitamins, minerals, fats, and amino acids.When a food item is processed, such as with the polishing of brown rice to make white rice, many essential nutrients and fibers are lost that could be used by the body for properly digesting the grain. In the late 1800s, a Japanese doctor made the connection between the disease beriberi and a diet consisting mainly of polished, or white, rice. This marked the discovery of thiamine, or vitamin B1. Thiamine is found in the outer portion of rice, or the bran; this portion is removed when brown rice is polished into white rice. Thiamine and also biotin help the body utilize its blood sugar by bringing glucose into the powerhouse of the cell—the mitochondria—to be burned for energy. Yet thiamine and biotin are just two of the nutrients that get stripped away during processing. Furthermore, consuming white rice causes the blood sugar to spike, as the fiber that slows down the release of sugar into the blood stream has been removed. In essence, the majority of helpful vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals that were present in the outer portion of the brown rice kernel are lost when the rice is polished.Remember that it’s fine to eat a small amount of white rice on occasion, such as with other nourishing foods like pastured meats, bone broth, and vegetables. The healthy combination can balance out the negative effects of the lost nutrients in the bran and germ of the rice. I like to combine brown rice with cooked dried beans and vegetables, or serve organic white jasmine rice on occasion with meat and poultry—sometimes brown rice feels too heavy to eat with meat, and white rice can be just the thing to accompany it.Eating a diet of refined, processed foods over time can deplete the body of essential nutrients that it needs to function properly. However, eating something refined on an occasional basis shouldn’t cause much harm if the body is well nourished from an otherwise whole foods diet. If you are currently eating a diet heavy in processed foods, though, start out with the easy swaps, like trading bread for brown rice, or fruit juice for an apple or orange; also, consider replacing one of your present meals a day with one of the recipes in this book. Over time, you’ll gravitate to the whole foods and save the processed foods for occasional treats.Healthy Whole FoodsWhole foods are naturally more calming and nourishing than processed foods. Why is this? It’s because a whole food is something you can imagine growing or living in nature, like kale, chicken, eggs, fish, almonds, carrots, millet, olives, apples, strawberries, brown rice, or avocados. These foods have not been processed, enriched, or denatured in any way. They contain a perfect balance of nutrients—just as nature intended. Basing your diet on whole foods, and using small amounts of minimally processed foods like olive and coconut oils, whole-grain gluten-free flours, and natural sweeteners, you’ll most likely see a dramatic improvement in your and your children’s overall health.Eat a Plant-Rich DietA plant-rich diet is one that focuses on foods such as vegetables, fruits, whole grains, legumes, nuts, and seeds. Animal foods, while very nutrient dense, make up a smaller proportion of your diet. Compared to all other food types, plants provide the body with the most gene-signaling molecules.You’ve heard the architectural expression, “Form follows function.” In nature, form equals function. Plants package themselves in their whole forms for brilliant reasons: the tougher outer portions are barriers against potential threats, such as sudden temperature changes, bacteria, fungi, or insects, and they contain important chemicals that act as natural antioxidants, microbial deterrents, and insecticides. It so happens that these very same plant chemicals offer numerous beneficial effects to the human body. Phenols, such as catechins, ellagic acid, and tannins, as well as pectin and other soluble fibers, are protective against forms of cancer, with some of these compounds even binding readily to heavy metals and radioactive particles from the environment, allowing for proper excretion from the body. When the exteriors of these plants are broken or stripped during processing, many of the protective compounds are lost. But when you base your diet on whole plant foods, you get an abundance of phytochemicals, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, which signal your genes to keep the immune system calm and the body healthy.The Importance of OrganicsA review published in 2010 found organic foods to contain higher levels of vitamin C, iron, and magnesium, as well as more of the important antioxidant phytochemicals like carotenoids, flavonoids, and anthocyanins. The higher mineral level is logical, considering that organic farmers continuously add organic material to the soil to nurture the fruits, vegetables, and grains they grow, as well as the animals that eat those crops. If you talk with an organic farmer, you will quickly learn how important soil quality is for higher yields, better flavor, and insect and disease control. They all acknowledge that well-fed plants are naturally more resistant to disease and harmful insects.Chemical Use Changes How Plants BehaveConventional farmers use chemical fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, and fungicides that may persist in the soil and the environment for upward of 50 years. Not only do these chemicals get into the food we eat, but they also enter our water, air, and soil, harming the delicate balance of beneficial insects, aquatic life, soil microorganisms, and other living things that inhabit the farms. These chemicals can change the ability of those crops to interact well with the environment, including how they handle the soil microorganisms, harmful insects, competitive plants, and other natural stressors. These stressors are important because they force the plants to produce protective chemical compounds. Anytime you stress a plant, it forces that plant to defend itself and become “stronger.” For example, when the sun strikes a plant, with UV radiation, the plant will produce natural sunscreens like carotenoids and flavonoids. When insects nibble on the leaves of a broccoli plant, the plant can produce natural insecticides, such as the sulforaphane found in the cruciferous family of vegetables. If these same cruciferous vegetables are conventionally farmed and periodically sprayed with pesticides, they are not as likely to produce these natural substances.The Impact of Chemical FarmingThe chemical pesticides that farmers use are likely to negatively impact all who consume them, whether insect or human. And why wouldn’t they? That is exactly what they are engineered to do. Research done in California found that the children of mothers living within 500 meters of commercial field sites using the highest levels of organochlorine pesticides had a 6.1 times higher risk of having autism. Numerous studies examining the pesticide exposure of neonates have determined that the negative impact on brain function and intelligence measures increases as pesticide levels rise. One study showed a lowering of IQ by seven points by the age of seven, in those with the highest exposures to pesticides.Organic Is the Most Nourishing ChoiceChildren who eat a conventional diet are continually exposed to pesticides. One study examined the urinary levels in children of two commonly used agricultural pesticides—malathion and chlorpyrifos. Measured before, during, and after the children ate a five-day organic diet, the study showed that pesticide levels were elevated before the organic diet, and again when the children returned to a conventional diet. During the organic diet, however, the urinary levels of these two pesticides were almost undetectable.Clearly, buying and eating organic food are of utmost importance in decreasing the amount of chemicals we are exposed to—not only for our children but also for everyone else, especially those living near commercial farms. Ideally, this diet change should begin before a child is even conceived, as the preconception time and the last two trimesters of pregnancy are the most vulnerable periods for chemical exposure. Remember: plants grown in nutrient-rich soil contain more vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals than their conventionally grown counterparts. These natural nutrients keep our bodies functioning properly, help us grow resilient children, and protect us all from disease.Why Gluten-Free?Food is made up of thousands of large molecules that need to be broken down into smaller molecules so they can be taken into the body and used for fuel—as a facilitator of many reactions—or is incorporated into cell structures. This process of digestion and absorption can be altered by numerous factors, one of which may be the food itself. And this food may be gluten. People react differently to the ingestion of gluten. For some, the reaction may be an IgE-mediated gluten allergy, while for others it is a tearing down of the intestinal lining otherwise known as celiac disease. Others can have adverse symptoms known broadly as a gluten sensitivity reaction. Though not everyone will experience these serious reactions, everyone is likely to have a gluten-initiated leaky gut after consuming gluten. It’s important to note, of course, that people who are very healthy, have low stress levels, who have an optimal nutrient status (including good levels of vitamin D), and have well-functioning immune and digestive systems with a diverse population of beneficial microbes in their guts—a healthy microbiome—will experience fewer adverse effects after gluten consumption.Some people with celiac disease or a gluten sensitivity can immediately feel the effects of eating something containing gluten, usually bloating and digestive upset; others may have “silent” symptoms that range from infertility to osteoporosis. For example, it is possible to have celiac disease but have no symptoms other than iron-deficiency anemia. There are just too many possible ways that gluten can cause harm. So even if you do not have a gluten sensitivity or celiac disease, your digestion and overall health may well benefit from a gluten-free diet.

Editorial Reviews

“[A] comprehensive, enthusiastic guide to whole-foods living… [and a] rousing call to parents trying to raise healthy kids. What follows are 365 appetizing and practical recipes for nutritious meals and snacks that put the authors’ philosophy into practice. Readers will find a persuasive argument for adopting this lifestyle and plenty of advice to get started.” – Booklist "There are many good cookbooks available today in the gluten-free world. There are a few excellent cookbooks. And then there are the 'Great Ones'. Nourishing Meals is in the latter category. Incredibly delicious, wholesome and easy to prepare, this cookbook is destined to be dog-eared and stained from use in no time flat. Ali Segersten, I would sit at your table any and every day to eat your nourishing meals." -- Dr. Tom O'Bryan,, author of The Autoimmune Fix"Whether you actually need to be dairy, gluten, or soy-free or not, you'll find the recipes to be delicious and to expand your ideas about cooking in the 21st century. Whether it's the meals, the smoothies, or the deserts you'll say YUM!" -- Liz Lipski, PhD, CNS, IFMCP, LDN Maryland University of Integrative Health, Author of Digestive Wellness and Digestive Wellness for Children