Apple A Day & Beyond

Why Protein Is Important In Your Diet

Why Protein Is Important In Your Diet

When you change your eating habits, exercise habits, or are looking to lose weight, it’s important to consider your protein intake.  Why is protein important in your diet?

-It is a component of every cell in your body: hair and nails are almost entirely made of protein.

-Your body uses it to build and repair tissue.

-It is an important component of muscles, bone, skin, cartilage, and blood.

Protein is a “macronutrient”, which means that you need to consume large amounts of it to stay healthy.  And unlike carbohydrates and fat, your body does not store protein, so it’s important to consume it often to replenish.  This is important especially after a workout, to fuel the muscles you’ve been exercising.  Protein bars and protein shakes are an excellent way to supplement your diet to make sure you’re getting enough protein.

What are the benefits of a high-protein diet?

-Faster recovery after workouts

-Reducing muscle loss

-Increased lean muscle mass

-Helping maintain a healthy weight

-Curbing hunger


If you have dietary restrictions, fear not! Protein can be found in many different sources, including milk, eggs, fish, soy, and legumes like beans and peanuts.  Garden of Life’s RAW Protein consists of sprouted grains and brown rice protein, a highly absorbable vegan source of protein.

Click here to check out Garden of Life’s RAW Protein and RAW Fit.  Are you getting enough protein in your diet?


Garden of Life RAW Meal

Garden of Life® RAW Meal was formulated to be a snack or meal replacement that satisfies hunger, is naturally filling and provides energy, all while providing the protein, fiber, vitamins and minerals that you would find in a healthy meal of raw foods. RAW Meal provides the nutrition of a well-balanced, healthy raw meal in one delicious serving.

Why Choose RAW Meal?

RAW Meal goes beyond organic by providing live probiotics and enzymes, Vitamin Code® RAW Food-Created vitamins and minerals, as well as nutrient Code Factors such as beta-glucans, SOD, glutathione and CoQ10, enabling natural recognition by your body.

Containing 26 superfoods from RAW organic seeds, sprouts and greens, RAW Meal provides 34 grams of protein, 9-16 grams of fiber (depending on flavor) and a healthy 2.5 grams of fat making it an excellent choice for “weight conscious” individuals. RAW Meal also offers 20 Vitamin Code vitamins and minerals providing at least 100% of the Daily Value of 16 key nutrients.

Just as important is what’s NOT included in RAW Meal. It is gluten-free, dairy-free and lactose-free. It has no fillers, no synthetic nutrients, no artificial flavors or sweeteners and no preservatives.

What are the Key Benefits of RAW Meal?

A convenient meal-on-the-go, RAW Meal is suitable for almost anyone including those on vegetarian or vegan diets, those on low carbohydrate diets or those with gastrointestinal sensitivities to milk, whey or other protein sources. RAW Meal offers the following:

  • Provides the nutrition of a well-balanced, healthy meal
  • Naturally filling, satisfies hunger, provides energy
  • Excellent source of RAW organic, plant-based protein (34g) – including all essential amino acids
  • Excellent source of 20 Vitamin Code vitamins and minerals – RAW Food-Created Nutrients and RAW Food-Chelated Minerals that enable targeted delivery and natural recognition by your body
  • Excellent source of soluble and insoluble fiber (9-16g) depending on flavor
  • Provides live probiotics and enzymes for healthy digestion
  • Made exclusively from RAW natural, plant-based, whole foods – uncooked, untreated, unadulterated
  • Contains 13 RAW organic sprouts, 4 RAW organic cereal grass juices, 5 RAW organic fruits, spirulina and chlorella
  • No Trans Fats

RAW Meal naturally satisfies hunger and increases energy, making it great for those looking to manage their diet and looking for a convenient alternative to the pre-packaged or fast-food meals that dominate our on-the-go lifestyles.

Raw Meal Flavors:

Original 1,190g, 593g & 10 Single Serve Packets
Chocolate 1.2Kg, 606g & 10 Single Serve Packets
Vanilla 1.1Kg, 558g & 10 Single Serve Packets
Vanilla Spiced Chai 1.1Kg, 557g & 10 Single Serve Packets

raw meal sale

prices valid while supplies last

4 Healthy Ways to Celebrate the 4th

4 Healthy Ways to Celebrate the 4th

To celebrate our nation’s independence (and a great run in the World Cup), we’ve thought up some healthy ways to show our American pride!

1. Eat only red, white, and blue foods.  We’re not talking food dyes and bleaches, we mean raw, natural foods that sport our nation’s colors:


Berries: Raspberries, cranberries, strawberries, cherries…just stay away from red blackberries until they ripen up


Apples (although we’re partial to golden apples…)

Watermelon: delicious, ripe watermelon in July! Don’t forget to have a seed-spitting contest!

White:watermelon salad

Milk: a glass of whole, raw milk is an excellent source of vitamin D and calcium

Coconut: try some shaved coconut on your fruit salad





Red Cabbage

Bleu Cheese

Blue Corn


Our favorite recipes for the 4th?

Red Pepper, Mushroom, and Red Cabbage slaw

1 large red pepper, very thinly sliced

about 6 white mushrooms, cubed

½ head red cabbage, shredded

2-6 Tbs olive oil

2-6 Tbs vinegar of your choice

Salt and Pepper to taste and spices of your choice

Combine all ingredients and refrigerate overnight.

Grilled Watermelon

Slice watermelon about 2 inches thick.  Grill for about 10 minutes, flipping halfway through.  Top with soft goat cheese and blueberries, then drizzle with balsamic vinegar to serve.


2. Take a walk (or a run!) and count how many American flags you see.jumping jack jpg

Bonus Round: when you get home, do that many reps of your favorite exercise (we like jumping jacks because they look like fireworks)

3. Beat the heat and go for a swim (and don’t forget that patriotic swimsuit!)

4. Exercise your brain with a quick brush-up on American History.  Here’s some facts you might not have known about the US of A:

- Alaska is the state with the highest percentage of people who walk to work

- Even though the grizzly bear is California’s official state animal, none have been seen there since 1922

- Montana has three times as many cows as it does people.

- The Declaration of Independence was written on hemp paper

- US Highway 550 in Colorado became known as Million Dollar Highway because its roadbed was paved with low-grade gold ore.

declaration-of-independence- John Adams and Thomas Jefferson both died on July 4, 1826 – 50 years to the day after the signing of the Declaration of Independence.

- George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, James Monroe, William Henry Harrison, John Tyler, Zachary Taylor, and Woodrow Wilson were all born in Virginia, making it the birthplace of more Presidents than any other state.

- Venus Fly Traps can only be found natively in the Carolinas and nowhere else in the world.

- The British deployed the first rockets in America during their attack against Fort McHenry in the War of 1812. Francis Scott Key witnessed the attack and immortalized it in a song he titled “The Star-Spangled Banner.” That song is now the national anthem of the United States.


We are proud and happy that our small American business can help you attain your best health at a lower cost.  This holiday weekend, please celebrate America responsibly and healthfully.

 vegetable USA

The First of Their Kind

The First of Their Kind

We are so excited to say that we now have Garden of Life’s Kind Organics Vitamins in our warehouse and ready to ship! These vitamins are truly one of a “kind” (sorry, I had to).  They’re the very first USDA Certified Organic and non-GMO Project verified multivitamins available.  AND they’re 100% Vegan! Yep, that includes the Vitamin D3.  The best part about this line is that they are whole food vitamins, created with Apple, Guava, Amla Berry, Sea Kelp, Holy Basil, Lemon, Beet, Broccoli, Carrot, Spinach, Tomato, Strawberry, Cherry, Blackberry, Bell Pepper, Brussels Sprout, Ginger, Blueberry, Garlic, Raspberry, Parsley, Cauliflower, Cabbage, Kale, Cucumber, Celery, Asparagus……and the list goes on. Reading the supplement facts, it even tells you where the vitamins are coming from (hint: it’s not a chemical isolate) Check it out:

KO Women's 40+ supp facts crop

(click to make it bigger)

Garden of Life partnered with actress and animal rights activist Alicia Silverstone to create this amazing line of vitamins (yep, that cute actress from Clueless and the Aerosmith music videos).  But she’s come a long way: Alicia has written several books including The Kind Diet and The Kind Mama, which detail how to live the “Kind Life”.  This lifestyle centers on veganism, a clean diet, and eco-friendly choices.  In her own words,  “it’s about living your healthiest and happiest life to the fullest, while taking care of mama Earth at the same time!” Alicia’s message is positive, upbeat, and full of love for the environment’s health and yours. To read more about Alicia and the Kind Life, click here to visit her blog.

Kind Organics is kicking off with its multivitamin formulas:

Men’s Multi

Men’s Once Daily

Men’s 40+

Women’s Multi

Women’s Once Daily

Women’s 40+

Prenatal Multi


Organic Plant-Derived Calcium


And two liquid sprays:

Vegan D3 (vanilla flavor)

B12 (raspberry flavor)


Finally, a whole food multi that’s certified organic, non-GMO verified, from real, honest, nutritious foods. No Magnesium Stearate, no preservatives, just whole, organic nutrients for your body, your baby, and your well-being.

 kindorganics fruit

Managing Blood Sugar Levels, Naturally

Managing Blood Sugar Levels, Naturally

Those of you with Diabetes or Pre-Diabetes know how difficult it can be to regulate blood sugar levels.  Diabetes can lead to uncontrollable weight gain, depression, and intense carbohydrate and sugar cravings.  The best way to manage diabetes is by maintaining a healthy lifestyle through diet and regular exercise.  Research now shows that several supplements may help regulate blood sugar levels as well.  Before you try any supplements, however, you should speak with your doctor and find out if they’re right for you.

How Exercise Lowers Blood SugarA senior man holding two dumbbells while flexing his muscles.

To fuel exercise, your muscles tap into glucose reserves for energy.  When that supply is exhausted, your body begins to use glucose from the bloodstream, causing blood glucose levels to drop.  In addition to lowering blood sugar, regular exercise (30 minutes of moderate activity at least 3 times per week) can increase insulin sensitivity.  This means that your body will release insulin at the appropriate time to regulate blood sugar on its own.  Exercise is essential to maintaining a healthy lifestyle: it helps lower blood pressure and cholesterol, improve circulation, and burn fat.

A Healthy Diet For Healthy Blood Sugar

Tea_and_Chocolate_largeNutritionists concur that the best diet to help regulate blood sugar is one low in carbohydrates and high in protein.  Eating foods high in the antioxidant Alpha Lipoic Acid (ALA) like liver, spinach, broccoli, and potatoes can help lower blood sugar.  Polyphenols, another type of antioxidants, can help control blood glucose.  These are found in teas and dark chocolate.  Careful, though, because foods containing polyphenols often contain caffeine, which can lead to further health complications.

Popular Diabetes SupplementsCinnamon

-Cinnamon: can help lower blood sugar levels, cholesterol, and triglycerides

-Diabetic Multivitamin: a good multivitamin can supplement a healthy diet which may be lacking in foods that help with blood sugar control. We recommend Garden of Life’s Perfect Weight Multi

-GTF Chromium: the most popular of diabetic supplements, GTF Chromium is the most effective form of the mineral in reducing cravings for carbohydrates

-Magnesium & Potassium: insulin resistance is associated with a deficiency in magnesium and potassium

-Garlic: can help lower blood sugar

-CoQ10: can help lower blood sugar

Regardless of which methods you choose, monitoring your blood sugar levels to be sure they are within the normal range is critical. Whether you have diabetes and want to reduce your dependence on medication, or are healthy and looking to prevent future disease, following a regular exercise regimen and nutritious diet will help. You’ll feel and look better, too.


Spring Cleaning! The All-In-One Supplement We Love

Recently, looking at ALL the supplement bottles lined up on my kitchen counter, I started to wonder if it was all really necessary.  Antioxidants, vitamin A, B, C, E, enzymes, minerals….need I go on? My knife block too many vitaminswould like it’s spot on the counter back.  So I started researching the world’s most nutrient-rich foods, and found that algae is an amazing thing.  Sea algae is super packed with nutrients and antioxidants so that it can withstand harsh conditions in the ocean.  Next, I found this great supplement made up of 3 varieties of micro-algae.  (They’re hydroponically grown in a lab so they’re not subjected to ocean pollution or unnatural elements)

1. Spirulina: you’ve probably heard of this one before.  It’s a blue-green micro-algae not visible to the naked eye. It is a rich source of vitamins A, B, E, and H, enzymes, trace minerals, and is an excellent source of GLA (an essential fatty acid that plays a key role in tissue growth and regeneration).  Spirulina is also comprised of 60-70% complete proteins.  Your body recognizes these proteins as food, which means that all of those vitamins and minerals they’re carrying are going straight to where your body needs them most.  Another great thing about microalgae? It’s got a soft cell wall so your body can easily digest and break down all of the nutrients.

2. Dunaliella Salina: this is a salt water micro-algae that accumulates large amounts of beta-carotene, alpha-carotene, xanthophylls (zeaxanthin, cryptoxanthin, lutein), and glycerol.  These mixed carotenoids are among nature’s best antioxidants.  The beta-carotene and glycerol help protect this micro-algae from harsh salt water.labalgae

3. Haematococcus Pluvialis: is considered to be the world’s greatest source of astaxanthin.  Astaxanthin is a powerful antioxidant carotenoid.  Research shows that its antioxidant benefits far surpass those of Vitamins C & E.  It also supports a natural inflammatory response.  The coolest thing about astaxanthin is that it is able to cross the blood-brain barrier better than all other antioxidants.  The blood-brain barrier is a permeability barrier that separates circulating blood from the brain fluid and the central nervous system.  It is made up of capillaries that form super tight junctions and a high electrical resistance to any harmful substance that may try to cross over into the brain or into the central nervous system (like bacteria or neurotoxins).  Beneficial substances can, however cross over through passive diffusion. Astaxanthin is one of those special chemicals that your brain will let in.  Once it can access the brain and central nervous system, its antioxidant properties go to work where no other supplements can venture.

The combination of these 3 algaes knocks all of those individual supplement bottles out of the water! After just a few days using it, I felt more energized during the day and had the best night’s sleep of my life.  I liked it so much, we decided to put it on our website so that our customers can try it too.  We’ll even throw in a free DVD and information/how to use booklet when you order BioAge.


Curcumin Synergy

Curcumin Synergy

This just in: Gaia Herbs’ new Turmeric Supreme formulas!  We are so excited to offer you Gaia’s new Turmeric Supreme Allergy, Heart, Joint, Pain, Extra Strength, and (our favorite) Pain PM formulas.  We’ll go into more detail about each formula later, but first let’s talk about why turmeric is so beneficial.

The use of turmeric for coloring and flavoring food, for cosmetic purposes, and for medicinal properties dates back to the ancient Vedic culture of India. The wide range of turmeric health benefits come mainly from its main ingredient, curcumin. This widely researched component of turmeric is highly therapeutic and is used in various drugs mainly because of its immunity boosting, anti-inflammatory, and anti-oxidant properties.

Oxidative damage of DNA and proteins causes free radicals in your body.  This phenomenon is associated with a variety of chronic diseases such as cancer, atherosclerosis, and neurodegenerative diseases. Curcumin plays an important role in curbing these conditions. Curcumin down-regulates certain inflammatory transcription factors such as kappaB, enzymes such as cyclooxygenase 2 and 5 lipoxygenase, and cytokines such as tumor necrosis factor (TNF), interleukin-1 (IL-1) and interleukin 6 (IL-6) and hinders the development of these diseases.turmeric root

The curcumin in turmeric has also been proven to
-Prevent the development of Type 2 Diabetes by lessening insulin resistance

-Helps promote weight loss and prevent obesity by suppressing the activity of fat cells that can cause inflammation in vital organs

-Improves Rheumatoid Arthritis with no known adverse effects

Currently, scientists have reason to believe that curcumin may help improve overall memory in Alzheimer’s patients and may be an effective chemopreventive and therapeutic agent for cervical cancer prevention and treatment.

Now, what’s so great about Turmeric Supreme Extra Strength? Gaia’s turmeric formula provides the highest curcumins per capsule of all their available formulas.  They also add supercritical Black Pepper extract to increase your absorption of the valuable curcumins.

Turmeric Supreme Allergy combines the power of turmeric with other botanicals including Nettle (a natural antihistamine that modulates the body’s inflammatory pathways and supports upper respiratory health), Quercetin (a flavonoid compound known for it’s effect on the body’s histamine response), and Goldenseal, which is added for support of healthy mucous membranes.

Turmeric Supreme Heart provides support for the heart muscle and vascular network that carries blood through the body.  This blend includes Quercetin, Resveratrol, Coleus, and Hawthorn–all for their ability to support the healthy function of the heart (maintaining normal heart rhythm) and cardiovascular system.

Turmeric Supreme Joint includes Quercetin to support a natural inflammatory response in the joints, while Devil’s Claw promotes joint comfort and the management of occasional pain.  Ginger, believed to promote healthy circulation and inflammatory responses, helps promote the normal production of inflammatory markers (proteins in your blood that increase or decrease inflammation).

Turmeric Supreme Pain supports your body’s healthy response to occasional pain with Feverfew, Devil’s Claw, and Ginger.  Jamaican Dogwood supports a healthy inflammatory response and promotes comfort.  The addition of Rosemary provides an array of antioxidants, while Wild Lettuce supports your ability to relax.

Turmeric Supreme Pain P.M. further enhances the formula of Turmeric Supreme Pain, adding additional herbs like Valerian root and Kava Kava root to support sleep and relaxation.


Wild Rose D-tox Recipes

Wild Rose D-tox Recipes

When you’re on a Detox or Cleanse program, we understand you can feel a little trapped by the foods you are or aren’t allowed to eat.  While doing the Wild Rose Herbal D-tox last month, I discovered that you have more wiggle-room than you think. Once you start exploring all of the foods you can eat and not dwelling on the foods you can’t (sorry cookie. I still love you.) you’ll find that there are hundreds–no–thousands of combinations and recipes you can make so that you’re never bored or hungry.  Here’s a few of my favorite culinary adventures:

Twice Baked Sweet Potato:baked sweet potato

bake potato for 1hr at 400 F. Cut in half, scoop out middle and mash in minced garlic, sweet basil, and sea salt. Put mash back in potato shell then create a well in the middle. Crack 1 egg into each well and bake for another 10 minutes. (I roasted asparagus in the same pan at this time).

Grilled Lime-Marinated Salmon:Grilled salmon with avocado

Blend juice of 2 limes, 4-8 garlic cloves (I like more), 4 chilis, 2 Tbs olive oil in food processor, then put in plastic bag with 2 salmon steaks.  Marinade at least 30 minutes in refrigerator.  Grill about 10-15 minutes skin side down, or until it flakes easily. Top it with fresh cilantro and sliced avocado.

Roast Chicken with Garlic and Rosemary:roast chicken

This is one of my favorites because it leaves plenty left over for other meals.  You should always use chicken free of antibiotics and hormones, organic if you can get it.

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

Start by removing giblets, then rinsing the chicken inside and out.  Remove any leftover feathers and excess fat then pat the outside dry.  Now separate the skin from the meat (gently, though. if the skin tears too much it won’t seal in the moisture to keep that breast meat tender).  Rub olive oil into the meat under the skin, including the drumsticks on the side.  Also rub in several cloves of minced garlic and chopped fresh rosemary.  Add a large pinch of sea salt to really bring out the flavor. Now squeeze the juice of 1/2 lemon over the chicken, then place the rind and a sprig of rosemary inside it.  I roasted some sweet potatoes and onions with mine, but you use whatever you like.  Tie the legs together with kitchen twine and tuck the wings under, then roast for 1 1/2 hours, or until the juices run clear when you cut between a leg and thigh.  Remove the chicken from the oven and cover with aluminum foil for about 20 minutes to let it rest.

Old Fashioned Chicken and Rice Soup:chicken soup

The best part of roasting a chicken is making chicken stock to use later.  It’s rich in collagen, calcium, magnesium, gelatin, and plenty of other minerals.  Start your soup with about 2 quarts of chicken stock (if you reduce your stock more, you’ll want to use half water, half stock).  Bring it to a boil and add 2 c chopped carrots and 1/4 c chopped fresh parsley.  Cook until the carrots are soft, then add 2 c cooked white rice, 2 c chopped kale, and 2 c shredded chicken (from your roasted chicken earlier).  Add salt and pepper to taste and simmer on low for about an hour.

Carrot Almond Smoothie:carrot almond smoothie

In blender, mix 1c carrot juice, 2 tbs almond butter, 1c unsweetened vanilla almond milk, and cinnamon to taste.  Hello breakfast!

For more Wild Rose-friendly recipes, visit Dr. Terry Willard’s blog.

6 Sneaky Ways To Stay Hydrated Year Round

Dry weather creeping up on you? Fight back with these sneaky ways to stay hydrated during winter months.

baby eating watermelon

1. Eat lots of fruit.  Fruit is naturally bursting with water and juicy goodness.  So instead of drinking litres of water each day, reach for a juicy orange or mango at snack time.  Bonus: citrus fruits are rich in Vitamin C, a nutrient proven to support skin health!



2. Replace your morning coffee with an herbal tea.  Caffeine is a diuretic, which means it will dehydrate you.  Switching to a natural energy source will help your body stay hydrated and functioning better all day.


3. Jazz up your water.  Infuse a pitcher of water overnight with mint, raspberries, ginger, lemon, or cucumber.  Or, try some purified sparkling water.  Either way, it makes staying hydrated a lot more exciting than a boring refill from the water cooler.


4. Eating lunch on the go? Instead of a salty sandwich from the deli, grab a protein shake.  Now you’re getting a full glass of water and lean, healthy protein all in one!


5. Moisturize.  This one may seem obvious, but the best way to keep your skin glowing all day long is to replenish all of the moisture your skin loses in dry weather.  Choose an organic, nourishing lotion or body butter that absorbs easily (so you don’t have an excuse to skip your routine in the morning).  We recommend Neal’s Yard Remedies Bergamot and Garden Mint Body Butter.

neals yard body butter

6. Take your vitamins! Vitamins E and C are excellent for skin health, and a good multivitamin will ensure that you’re getting the perfect balance of all the vitamins you need to stay healthy year-round.  And don’t forget to drink a full glass of water with your supplements!


5 Protein Powder Recipes To Get You Moving

5 Protein Powder Recipes To Get You Moving

It’s January, folks, and we’re spending more time at the gym! So to fuel our workouts, we’ve hunted down some of the tastiest protein powder recipes on the internet. And with Garden of Life RAW Fit and RAW Protein on sale for all of January and February, you can test them out yourself!

Protein-Packed PuddingSpoonful of custard
1 Box firm tofu
½ Banana
2 tsp Vanilla
2 scoops RAW Fit (or 4 scoops RAW Protein, any flavor)

Blend it all together in a blender or food processor and chill. Makes 2 servings.

Good Morning Oatmealapple-cinnamon-oatmeal
1 serving instant oatmeal + water recommended in oatmeal directions
1 scoop RAW Fit (or 2 scoops RAW Protein, any flavor)
¼ c cored, chopped apples
Cinnamon to taste

Mix apples in with oatmeal as it cooks according to directions on box. stir in protein powder and cinnamon. Makes 1 serving to start your day off right!

Rice Crispy Protein Treatsrice crispies
1 ½ c Rice Crispies
1 ½ Tbs Honey
2 Tbs butter, melted (or coconut oil)
½ c oatmeal
½ tsp vanilla extract
1 scoop RAW Fit (or 2 scoops RAW Protein Vanilla or Original)

Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl then transfer to a 9 X 9 inch pan greased with butter or coconut oil. Bake at 325 degrees F 10-15 minutes until crispy.

Mocha Frappe Protein Shakemocha shake
1 Scoop RAW Fit Marley Coffee flavor
½ Banana
8 oz Chocolate almond milk
1c ice

Blend all ingredients and power up! 1 serving of RAW Fit Marley Coffee has as much caffeine as 1 cup of green tea.

Protein Fudgesicles (yes, you heard right)fudgesicle
2 ½ scoops RAW Fit
2 Tbs Cocoa Powder
1 Tbs Peanut Butter
1 ½ Tbs chia seed
2 Tbs sugar free chocolate syrup
2 Egg whites
¾ c sugar free vanilla coconut milk
5.3 oz fat free vanilla greek yogurt

Blend all ingredients together then divide into popsicle mold. Freeze until firm. A great post-workout treat during the summer!