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Oct 27, 2014

Pumpkin Muffins

Pumpkin Pie Muffins

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Yields 12-15 muffins
1½ cup whole wheat flour
½ cup packed brown sugar
½ tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp cloves
¼ tsp ginger
¼ tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
2 eggs
1 cup unsweetened pumpkin puree
½ cup honey
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 12-cup muffin pan, or line with paper liners. Stir together the whole wheat flour, brown sugar, spices, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl. Make a well in the center; place eggs, pumpkin, oil, and honey in the well. Mix just until the dry ingredients are absorbed. Spoon into muffin cups so they are ¾ full. Bake for 18 minutes or until the tops spring back when lightly touched. Cool in the pan before removing from cups.
Calories: 177; Total Fat: 8g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 130mg, Carbohydrate: 25g, Fiber: 1g, Protein: 2.2g


Protect Yourself From Viral Infections

Vail Daily health column: Protect yourself from viral infections

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The cold and flu season is upon us. In fact, it started early this year with the enterovirus in our schools. Ninety five percent of the colds are due to viral infections. This means that antibiotics do not work for most colds. Antibiotics only work for bacterial infections and not viruses. 
Since we live in an area where tourists come from all over the world, we get many different types of viral infections. I have lived in the Vail Valley for 17 years, and it appears that every year these viral infections get worse. Many people get colds that last for three weeks and they’re still going to work or school, thereby exposing others. So how can you get your immune system ready to protect you this season?
First, make sure you take a good multiple vitamin that contains the antioxidants vitamin A, C, D and selenium. These antioxidants protect the immune system from viruses, bacteria and chemicals in our environment. Many people are deficient in vitamin D. This is why it is important to get a blood test to make sure you’re not deficient. Vitamin D protects against colds and flu, as well as breast cancer, prostate cancer, allergies, asthma and dementia.  
Many people are also deficient in probiotics. Probiotics protect our immune system in the gut, so probiotics can also prevent us from viral, bacterial and parasite infections. Good probiotics should be refrigerated.
Other tips include:
• Make sure you wash your hands frequently, especially after touching areas such as door handles, phones, pens and computers where many other people are working. Don’t shake hands with a lot of people. 
• Get eight hours of sleep a night.  
• Exercise one hour, five times per week. Many people in our community tend to do too much exercise, which can actually deplete your immune system. 
• Eat healthy. Eat at least 5 to 12 vegetables a day and protein with each meal. Drink alcohol in moderation; two drinks no more that three times per week. Take sugar and fructose out of your diet. These foods are responsible for inflammation in the body.   
• If you start feeling a cold or flu coming on, immediately start taking antiviral herbs such as echinacea, garlic, ginger, osha, astragalus root, schisandra, etc. These are the strongest in tincture form. These can get rid of a cold within 24 to 48 hours.  
• Drink hot teas such as ginger, lemon and honey. I have formulated a cold and flu tea that works very well. 
• Eat chicken or miso soup with ginger and garlic. 
• Eliminate products with dairy while you are sick. Dairy products contribute to increased mucus.
• Using a neti pot can help, especially if you get a lot of sinus infections. 
I offer a cold and flu clinic in which I examine your sinuses, throat, ears and listen to your lungs. Then I craft a specific antiviral tincture related to your condition. The key is responding as soon as you get sick. There is no need to be sick for three weeks this winter.  
Deborah Wiancek is a naturopathic physician who has a family practice at the Riverwalk Natural Health Clinic & Pharmacy in Edwards. She has been practicing in the Vail Valley for 17 years. To schedule an appointment, please call 970-926-7606 or email wiancek@ Visit or for more information.

Oct 17, 2014

Raw Macaroon Recipe

Serves 4 ~ Yummy!


  1. 3 cups raw, shredded unsweetened coconut
  2. 3 medjool dates, pitted
  3. 1/2 teaspoon alcohol-free pure vanilla extract

Blend ingredients in a food processor.  Use a cookie scoop to make tablespoon-sized balls or roll by hand.  Dehydrate at 105 degrees heat in a 220 -degree oven for 4 to 6 hours.  

Asian Coconut Shrimp

Delicious shrimp recipe to serve over steamed rice. 


  • 1 1/2 teaspoons olive or coconut oil
  • 1 medium shallot, very finely chopped
  • 1 small jalapeno, seeded and finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons finely grated lime zest
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • Salt
  • 1 1/2 pounds shelled and de-veined medium shrimp
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro 
  • Steamed rice, for serving
  • 1/4 cup dry-roasted unsalted peanuts, chopped

In a large skillet, heat the canola oil.  When it begins to shimmer, add the chopped shallot and cook over moderate heat until softened, about a minute.  Stir in the jalapeno and lime zest, then pour in the coconut milk.  Add the sugar, season generously with salt and bring to a simmer.  Add the shrimp and cook, stirring frequently, until opaque, about five minutes.  Stir in the chopped cilantro.  Spoon the shrimp and sauce over steamed rice, sprinkle with the peanuts and serve. 

Butternut Squash in Fresh Green Curry

This simple fresh curry paste takes only minutes to prep.  Delicious with healthy, sweet butternut squash and accompanying rice. Recipe can be made with prepared curry paste if time is limited.


  • 1 small butternut squash, about 1-1/2 pounds
  • 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped shallots or yellow onion
  • 1 tablespoon coarsely chopped garlic
  • 1 teaspoon peeled and coarsely chopped fresh ginger
  • 2 fresh green jalapeno chilies or 1 fresh green serrano chili
  • 3 tablespoons plus 1/2 cup water
  • 3/4 cup coarsely chopped cilantro leaves and stems
  • 1 can (14 ounces) unsweetened coconut milk (about 1 3/4 cups)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves

Trim off the stem and blossom end of the butternut squash.  Halve lengthwise and scoop out and discard the seeds and fibers.  Cut into large chunks and carefully peel each chunk.  Cut the peeled chunks into 1-inch pieces.  You will have about 4 cups. Set aside. 

In a small food processor or blender, combine the shallots or onion, garlic, ginger, chilies, the 3 tablespoons of water, and 1/2 cilantro.  Grind until you have a fairly smooth consistency.  You will end up with about 1/4 cup of bright green paste.  

Shake the coconut milk can well.  Spoon out 1/2 cup into a medium saucepan and bring to a gentle boil over medium heat.  Cook, stirring occasionally, until it thickens and releases its sweet fragrance, about 3 minutes. 

Add to the curry paste and cook for 1 to 2 minutes until it has dissolved into the coconut milk.  Add the remaining coconut milk, 1/2 water, salt, and squash.  Raise heat to high and bring curry to a boil.  Turn down heat if necessary to maintain a gentle boil and continue cooking until the squash is tender.  About 15 minutes. 

In the meantime, cut all but a few of the basil leaves crosswise into thin strips.  When the curry is cooked, stir in the basil strips and the remaining 1/4 cup of cilantro.  Remove from the heat and transfer to a serving bowl.  Garnish with the reserved basil leaves and serve hot.

Serves 4 to 6 people.