MyFoodMyHealth Newsletter Volume 4, Issue 8

In this issue:

newsletter-ul-li-bullet-whitebkgd Featured Recipe: Roasted Age-Bitashi
newsletter-ul-li-bullet-whitebkgd Myra's Kitchen Corner:  Explore Savory Tastes from Turkey
newsletter-ul-li-bullet-whitebkgd Nutritionist's Notes: A Boost for Your Bones
newsletter-ul-li-bullet-whitebkgd What's New with MyFoodMyHealth
newsletter-ul-li-bullet-whitebkgd Pollen Allergies? You Might Watch Out for These Foods
newsletter-ul-li-bullet-whitebkgd We Recommend: True Food: Seasonal, Sustainable, Simple, Pure
newsletter-ul-li-bullet-whitebkgd Downloadable Diet Plans from MyFoodMyHealth & Kathie Swift



Featured Recipe: Roasted Age-Bitashi

While its name may sound exotic, this recipe from our new chef Hideyo Yamada makes it easy to experience the revitalizing goodness of Japanese cuisine prepared right in your kitchen. Simply roast zucchini, carrots, eggplant, red bell peppers and shiitake mushrooms and toss them in a dashi sauce marinade to enjoy the deep fried flavor of this nutritious Japanese favorite.

Download Recipe

Myra's Kitchen Corner: Explore Savory Tastes from Turkey

All over Turkey, some form or another of savory—not sweet—yogurt is served at practically every meal. Caçik, the classic yogurt-based dish, is made from thick yogurt mixed with garlic and salt to which diced cucumber and mint is added. Rumi, the great Sufi mystic and poet of the thirteenth century, mentions this dish in his writings, so we know that savory yogurt dishes are rooted in a long tradition. The dish can be part of a mezze platter or can be served alongside a meal.

Caçik starts with thick yogurt. You can use Greek style, which is already thick, or you can take a thinner yogurt and thicken it yourself. To thicken the yogurt, place it in a cheesecloth-lined strainer for a few hours. You’ll get a lot of whey dripping into your bowl, which you can use for other dishes. The longer you strain the yogurt, the thicker it gets. If you strain your yogurt overnight, and it is as thick as cheese, simply whisk a few tablespoons of water into it to thin the yogurt to the desired consistency. Sheep’s or cow’s milk yogurt both are traditional; in the video I make the classic caçik with strained cow milk yogurt, and the variations with a Greek-style sheep’s yogurt.





Besides the classic caçik, lots of variations are relished as well. One striking variation is made with diced fresh beets. The dish starts the same way, with yogurt, salt and garlic. A couple of cups of beets stirred in turns the yogurt a luminescent pink. It’s also common to stir into the garlicky yogurt a pile of wilted chopped greens. I’ve used spinach in the video, but other greens such as chard are tasty as well. Make sure to squeeze out the excess water from cooking and chill the greens to room temperature before mixing them in.

Purslane, a leafy green that in the states is rather unusual—it’s found in green markets June through October—is more of an everyday vegetable in Turkey. It has round slick leaves with a singular nutritional profile; besides being high in vitamins and minerals, purslane is high in omega three fatty acids. In Turkey, handfuls of raw purslane are stirred into the garlicky yogurt base and enjoyed as part of a mezze platter.

Use your imagination and vary the vegetables. It’s amazing how tasty something so simple can be.

View Video

Nutritionist's Notes: A Boost for Your Bones

By Kathie Madonna Swift MS RD LDN

Enjoying hiking in the woods, walking in the park, lifting a child or dancing until dawn all depend on durable bones. Strong, resilient bones are essential to healthy, joyful living. Unfortunately, weak bones are far too common as evidenced by increasing rates of osteopenia and osteoporosis (bone loss).

Bones are not stoic or fixed structures. Our body’s bony architecture is dynamic and ever dependent on a constant supply of nutrients and body weight movements.


Here are a dozen tips to help preserve your bone integrity:

1. Power up your plate with plant foods. Achieving “8 a day” (vegetable & fruit servings) produces a more alkaline physical environment favorable for bone health.

2. Pour on some extra virgin olive oil. It is a mega food for the bones as indicated by research on the Mediterranean diet.

3. Go green! Sip on a green smoothie, stir up some Swiss chard or kale, or enjoy a raw green salad. Greens are rich in vitamins and minerals that support bone strength.

4. Give sea vegetables a try. They contain a blend of bone strengthening minerals such as boron, magnesium, calcium and more.

5. Soak up some rays. This will boost your vitamin D intake. Just a few minutes of incidental sunlight can perk up the bones. For a tasty calcium/vitamin D pairing you can also try some tasty sardines.

6. Enjoy some fermented organic soy foods. Fermented soy foods such as tempeh are packed with bone-friendly phytoestrogens.

7. Snack on some fresh fruit (a sweet source of boron) and raw nuts/seeds (calcium, magnesium, zinc).

8. Avoid bone robbers such as excess alcohol, caffeine and sugar.

9. Perk up your meals with herbs and spices for added flavor and minerals instead of dousing them with salt, which is a calcium mugger.

10. Avoid a product if it is loaded with sodium. Scan your food labels for high sodium. This competes with calcium at the cellular level.

11. Consider a better bone check up especially if you’re at risk including: bone density scan, bone resorption assay, vitamin (D, K, B12) and mineral levels (calcium, magnesium).

12. Move, lift, play. Stay active with weight bearing and strength building exercises whether it’s in a yoga class, circuit training workout or playground!

About Kathie

Kathie Madonna Swift MS RD LDN is the founder of SwiftNutrition (, and author with Dr. Gerard Mullin of The Inside Tract: Your Good Gut Guide to Great Digestive Health (Rodale, 2011).

Learn more about Kathie

What's New with MyFoodMyHealth

Welcome Our New Chef Hideyo Yamada

We’d like to welcome our latest addition to our family of chef’s, Hideyo Yamada. She is a trained sushi chef from Japan and a graduate from the Natural Gourmet Institute's Chef Training Program and the Institute of Integrative Nutrition. As a holistic chef, cooking instructor and a certified Holistic Health counselor, Hideyo specializes in delicious, gluten-free cooking that energizes and restores health and vitality. She’s contributed numerous Japanese inspired recipes to MyFoodMyHealth such as the featured recipe for Roasted Age-Bitashi. Foods like Roasted Age-Bitashi, provide a fun and flavorful glance into the Japanese diet and are full of nutrients that make them some of the most powerful medical foods around. Try the featured recipe from Hideyo and see just how simple it is to enjoy the healthy and delectable flavors of Japanese cuisine.

Enjoy Samples of Seasonal Recipes for Fall and Winter

At MyFoodMyHealth we encourage people to enjoy foods in season at their peak of freshness.  Not only are foods in season at their most flavorful and nutritious, but they are also at the most affordable when in season. To inspire you to eat seasonally, we've updated our home page with warm and cozy seasonal recipes you can enjoy this fall and winter. Check the new sample recipes out on our home page MyFoodMyHealth.


Pollen Allergies? You Might Watch out for These Foods

Do you have a pollen allergy? Do you also notice itching, burning, tingling and occasional swelling of the lips, mouth, tongue and throat where the fresh fruit or vegetable touched? Chances are you have oral allergy syndrome. More than half of the people with a pollen allergy also react when they eat some fruits and vegetables. The reaction is caused from proteins in the fruit which are similar to the allergy-causing proteins found in certain pollens.

Common cross-reactivity between pollens and fruits and vegetables

Pollen Allergy

Fruit or Vegetable Reaction


Apples, celery, hazelnuts, peaches, pears, raw potatoes


Bananas, melons (cantaloupe, honeydew, watermelon), tomatoes




Apples, carrots, celery, kiwi, peanuts, some spices (caraway seeds, parsley, coriander, anise seeds, fennel seeds)   Source: mayo clinic

For many people with pollen allergies the best thing to do is to avoid foods that might cross-react. Cooking fruits and vegetables can also help because they usually will not cause symptoms.


We Recommend:

True Food: Seasonal, Sustainable, Simple, Pure

By Andrew Weil (Author), Sam Fox (Author), Michael Stebner (Contributor)

The latest book from the renowned pioneer in integrative medicine, Andrew Weil, M.D., is a beautiful cookbook filled with 125 original recipes for nutritious, international dishes from Dr. Weil and chef Michael Stebner served at True Food Kitchens. This inspiring cookbook also includes helpful and informative essays to make it fun and easy to follow a healthy, seasonal and sustainable diet at home.

Buy on Amazon




HealthBarn USA

We always like to give a shout out to organizations that are working to teach kids about food and how fun and delicious eating healthy can be. At the barn, children (and grown-ups, too!) learn how to grow their own fruits and veggies and make the best choice at the supermarket or in a restaurant, how to prepare and cook their bounty, and how to add a heaping, tasty scoop of fun to everyday meals and snacks. For more information visit: HealthBarn USA

Downloadable Diet Plans from MyFoodMyHealth & Kathie Swift

The MyFoodMyHealth FODMAPs Diet Third Edition

We've recently released the third edition of our popular MyFoodMyHealth FODMAPs Diet. It includes updated information on the latest scientific research related to FODMAPs, the therapeutic eating plan that is gaining ground as an effective protocol to help individuals with irritable bowel syndrome.

Created by MyFoodMyHealth and our Chief Nutritionist Kathie Madonna Swift, the MyFoodMyHealth FODMAPs Dietprovides easy and helpful guidelines for following a FODMAPs eating plan, plus delicious recipes from MyFoodMyHealth chefs. If you suffer from IBS or other digestive disorders, it may be just what you need to help alleviate your IBS symptoms.

Learn more about the FODMAPs Diet

My Foundation Diet Expanded Second Edition

Now with flexitarian and vegetarian recipes & meal plans
The My Foundation Diet created by Kathie in conjunction with MyFoodMyHealth is a seasonal, delicious, whole foods approach to optimizing your health and genetic potential.

Learn more about the My Foundation Diet at


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