• What Does Food Have To Do With Gut Health?

    We've just finished up a heart health series on In My Plant-Based Kitchen and I've had a few requests for a gut health series, so I've started that this week on the channel.

    Anyone who knows me knows that this is one of my FAVOURITE topics! The microbiome is absolutely fascinating, and what we eat has a huge impact on the health of our microbiome. In turn the health of our microbiome determines SO MUCH about our overall state of health!

    In this series we're going to get into the details, and of course I'll share gut health recipes, tips and inspiration along the way.

    In Episode 32 of In My Plant-Based Kitchen (Part 1 of Nutrition For A Healthy Gut series) we are setting the stage. We cover:

    • what is the microbiome, and why is it important
    • why does it matter who is living in our gut?
    • how do we encourage healthy microorganisms to thrive in our gut?
    • what does it MEAN to have a healthy gut?
    • and we made this Sweet Chili Hummus (below) HINT -- this is a great way to add some legume diversity into your diet, which your gut will thank you for!

    Ready to get cooking? Here's the recipe:

    Sweet Chili Hummus
    (makes about 1.5 cups)

    • ½ cup sweet potato (cooked)
    • ½ cup dried red lentils, rinsed
    • ½ cup water
    • 2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
    • 1 clove garlic
    • 1 tsp maple syrup
    • 1-2 tsp ancho chili powder/another chili powder of your choice (or if you have chiles in sauce these are great too -- I used 1 tbsp)
    • ¼ tsp sea salt (or salt alternative), to taste


    1. Combine the red lentils and water in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Once they have boiled turn heat to low and cook just until lentils are soft, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
    2. If necessary cook a sweet potato*
    3. Place garlic clove in food processor and mince.
    4. Place the rest of the ingredients in the food processor and process until everything is smooth and creamy.
    5. Adjust salt/alternative and chili powder to taste.

    *Sweet potatoes make great snacks, and are a wonderful addition to many plant-based dinners, so I love to batch bake a bunch of them all at once, and pre-cooked is ideal for this recipe.

  • Foods to Lower Cholesterol -- Part 2 of the Heart Health Series

    Episode 30 of In My Plant-Based Kitchen is part 2 of a short series I am doing about heart health and nutrition.

    In part 1 we talked about hypertension and blood pressure (check out that episode here: https://youtu.be/62k4zZpxWs0) and this week we are talking about cholesterol!

    In this episode we cover:

    • how what you eat can affect your cholesterol levels (helpful and harmful)
    • how saturated fat and trans fats affect your cholesterol levels
    • which plant foods you want to be careful with when it comes to cholesterol
    • which plant foods to make a priority for great heart health and healthy cholesterol levels (and why)

    And we make one of my favourite breakfasts (and talk about why the components are so heart healthy and how you can adapt it to  your tastes/make it part of your meal planning routine):

    Overnight Oats

    Overnight oats are a simple, healthy breakfast that you can make ahead for busy mornings. The recipe below yields 1 serving, so make as many servings (each in a separate jar) as you’d like. Overnight oats will keep for up to 5 days in the refrigerator.


    • 1/3 cup rolled oats plus ¼ - ½ tsp ground Ceylon cinnamon
    • 1 tbsp chia seeds or ground flax
    • 1 tbsp almond butter or peanut butter (or another nut/seed butter)
    • 2/3 cup soy/almond milk
    • load it up with berries and other fruit -- I love pear and blueberries


    1. In a jar or bowl (a 1-pint mason jar is perfect), combine the oats and cinnamon, chia seeds and nut butter. Add a splash of the milk and mix the nut butter into the oats. Then add the rest of the milk and stir to combine.

    2. Top with your fruit of choice. (If you’re using fruit that doesn’t store well, like sliced apple or banana, wait to top the oats until you’re ready to serve.)

    3. Place the lid on the jar and refrigerate overnight, or up to 5 days.

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