Category Archives: raw food

Raw Pecan Pie Power Bar

Raw Pecan Pie Power Bar

This recipe is part of Pennywise Platter Thursday at the Nourishing Gourmet

I am loving the weather the past two days. Cold, cloudy and a bit rainy–it feels like winter in Texas. Now I love sunlight for its wonderful healing abilities which promote growth and life on this planet, but sometimes you just need a break from so much heat. Ever since I can remember, I’ve loved cold and rainy days, and this day is one of them.

The weather has put me in the mood for holiday cooking, or for this recipe, uncooking. Pecans remind me of Christmas every time I eat them, and they certainly did this afternoon when I put together this raw pecan pie power bar recipe.  Let me tell you, this bar tastes SO much like pecan pie, it’s ridiculous. You won’t believe how good this raw recipe is until you try it.

This nutritious bar is packed full of satiating good fat with anti-inflammatory properties to boot. They are sweetened with dates, a dried fruit. The fat and protein from the pecans will lower the glycemic index of the dates, which are quite high on their own, so use this bar as a good post-work out “pick me up”.

Raw Pecan Pie Power Bar

1/4 cup pecans, soaked and dried*
2 TBSP. dried unsweetened coconut
Pinch of Celtic Himalayan Sea Salt optional
2 soft Medjool dates, soaked for 10 minutes.

Optional Add Ins:
1 TBSP. Freshly ground Flaxseed
1 tsp. protein powder
1/2 tsp. coconut oil

Place the pecans in a food processor along with the coconut and sea salt. Pulse until a course pecan flour is made. Add the dates and any additional ingredients if desired. Pulse until a dough forms.

Shape the dough into a bar. Refrigerate or freeze until firm.

Makes 1 bar.
*Soaking nuts and seeds improves digestibility as well as increases nutritional availability. This is an optional step, if you prefer.

Stores already have all of their holiday merchandise out already. I love the holiday season! In the car this morning I was listening to a “LUX Radio Theater” movie from the 1940s. Can you guess what it was? I’ll tell you anyway – The Miracle on 34th Street. I believe it’s safe to say that I’m already in the holiday spirit. It’s something I look forward to all year long.

Hopefully this raw recipe will inspire you to get into the spirit also. Even if it doesn’t, it’s still a nourishing way to provide energy and satiation. It is small, but will keep your stomach satisfied for a couple of hours. It’s also a fairly simple recipe, and requires little time to prepare. Your taste buds, and your health, will thank you for making this.

Until next time, this is The Healthy Advocate.

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The Twisted Truth About Saturated Fat

Note: This is only a fraction of what I have to say about this matter and it is far from complete, and don’t be surprised to see more posts on fats, particularly saturated fats, in the near future.

It’s raining outside, and I sit here sipping on my raw hot chocolate. I love mornings like this. The rain makes it so cozy, and knowing that it is cold outside, I feel very grateful that I have a warm home with everything that I need. There’s a Hitchcock documentary on in the background.

I also begin pondering on a subject that I have spent a bit of time researching on, and I dwell upon this subject for a while, trying to discover why this information is not out to the majority of the public. This is the subject of saturated fat.

Yikes! This term even strikes a bit of fear in myself, because I have always been told that these natural, nature made (or God made, depending on what you believe) fats are harmful and contribute to a variety of diseases like heart disease and elevated cholesterol.

However, I have found this topic to be quite controversial, and with the analysis that I have accumulated in my nutritional research, I quite strongly believe that saturated fat isn’t the devil it is made out to be.

After reading studies accumulated by Dr. Mercola, studying the diets of native and isolated populations (via Nourishing Traditions and The Weston A. Price Foundation), and really delving deep into controversial research, I have found that saturated fat has been a part of healthy populations for centuries. In fact, it has nourished all people for hundreds of thousands of years (maybe millions?), and it wasn’t until the USDA told us to eat more carbohydrates and less overall fat to fight heart disease, that heart disease actually increased.

The “theory” that saturated fat is corrleated to an increase in heart disease was developed by Dr. Ancel Keys in the 1950s (I just finished a fascinating book about Keys’ starvation experiment). His research covered over many different countries, but omitted data that was unfavorable to the study and only concluded seven countries. The research did show a link between fat consumption and heart disease, but only when one looked at the countries Keys included. When one actually looks at all the countries that were available in the study, the link between saturated fat and heart disease completely disappears, and it is seen that there were other factors that contributed toward heart disease.

This study, however, gained much publicity (Ancel Keys was a big guy on publicity of his experiements), and the “Low-fat” craze swept the nation, and later the world, with low-fat and fat-free products for every thing.

According to nutritional researchers Mary Enig, PhD and Sally Fallon, heart disease makes up 40% of all US deaths, and is growing, which should suggests (if you believe in the “Lipid Hypothesis”) that saturated fat consumption (mainly in the form of animal products) has increased. In actuality, saturated fat intake has decreased.

How come if the saturated fat has decreased, the heart disease risk has become even greater? It is believed by many that it has to do with the high level of carbohydrate intake in the forms of processed, refined grains and sugars. These stimulate our insulin levels and elevates our triglyceride and cholesterol levels and hurts our hearts. Plus the intake of trans fats in processed foods, we have consumed large amounts of grains that have degraded our health.

If you look at the USDA food pyramid, you will notice that the majority of our calories should come from grain products, and only HALF of those grains should be whole, complex carbohydrates (these will provide a steadier release of glucose in our system).

However I firmly believe that all grains should be limited, or even eliminated, for overall health. Fresh vegetables, high quality animal proteins and fats and small quantities of soaked and sprouted grains (more on that later) should make the bulk of your diet, as these will not cause a spike in blood sugar.

I definitely don’t want you to take this information as the absolute truth, because I strongly encourage everyone to fully research the nutrition information they hear, so that they can make a strong and firm decision about their health. My research has convinced me about saturated fat being an essential part of life (after all, around 50% of our cells in our body are made of the stuff!).

If you have any questions, or would like to be pointed to sources, studies or research articles, please comment below. I’ll be uploading a new recipe very soon, so stay tuned!

Until next time, this has been the Healthy Advocate.