Thanks for the awesome feedback on my post on sugar addiction yesterday. I loved the really helpful suggestions for how I might address it in my life. I’m going to start by cutting back on my date consumption, especially in smoothies. I’d like to get used to (and be satisfied by!) the natural sweetness of fruit. I also know that I must stop using artificial sweeteners 100%. Darn. Addicts never like realizing they must give up their vice.
I vaguely remember reading something that Dr. Fuhrman wrote that people who have trouble with sugar addiction need to stay away from concentrated sweeteners, although of course eating fruit in its whole form is encouraged because it’s so healthy and it’s meant to be nature’s dessert. Concentrated sweeteners would include dried fruits, some cooked fruits and all types of other non whole-food sugars.
My overconsumption of sugar goes back as far as I can remember. It always went beyond just normal consumption, too. I remember being really young, like four or five years old, and sneaking some candy that my parents had hidden in the pantry. Of course they knew that I was the one who ate the candy and I got in trouble for it. Just to use this as a learning point, I’ve learned through my nutrition training that parents shouldn’t keep foods in the house that are off-limits to kids because it sets up the “good food” and “bad food” scenario that can have unintended consequences down the road.
Some of the best advice regarding feeding kids comes from the work of Ellyn Satter (she wrote an incredible book about the subject called Child of Mine: Feeding with Love and Good Sense). The basic idea is that parents are in charge of the “what, when and where of food” and the children are in charge of the “if and how much.” Feel free to e-mail me if you have questions about this subject and I’ll do my best to answer them based on what I have learned (note: I don’t have kids, so it’s all book-based knowledge). I should also mention that Dr. Fuhrman wrote an excellent book on feeding kids called Disease-Proof Your Child: Feeding Kids Right.
You’ll notice I did use two dates in the salad dressing I made yesterday, but I’m okay with using this little amount in a dressing. I have yet to resort to drinking salad dressing straight from the bottle. By the way, this dressing was inspired by a reader who said she makes a dressing using citrus fruits (I can’t remember who originally suggested it, but thank you!).
The ingredients are so simple, I combined a peeled lemon and orange in the Vitamix with 1/4 cup of raw, unsalted cashews. I added a little bit of onion, garlic and vinegar plus two dates to cut the sourness and it was done!
A high-speed blender is necessary to get the cashews to become creamy in consistency:
This dressing is such a pretty color…reminds me that spring is coming!
Not only did I use this dressing on my lunch salad yesterday, but I used it as a dipping sauce for an artichoke I cooked in the pressure cooker:
Creamy Citrus Salad Dressing – Makes 6-8 Servings
1 large orange and 1 large lemon, peeled
1/4 cup raw, unsalted cashews
1/4 large onion
2 garlic cloves
2 large dates, pitted
2 tablespoons vinegar (your choice, I use Trader Joe’s White Balsamic vinegar)
Combine all ingredients in a high-speed blender and whirl until smooth.
Speaking of pressure cookers, I am still using mine, but primarily to cook beans right now. I borrowed two books from the library that I wasn’t crazy about, so I’m still in the learning phase. Yesterday was my first time cooking just a vegetable and it worked pretty well. The artichoke cooked in 6 minutes on high heat which was a lot less time than steaming it 45 minutes or longer on the stovetop.
Have a great day!