Be Fit and Healthy

Vegans and Vitamin D

Vegans usually obtain vitamin D from the action of sunlight on the skin or by taking fortified foods such as soya milk, margarine and vitamin supplements which are made from yeast or other fungi. Fortified vegan products contain D2 (ergocalciferol). Foods with naturally occurring vitamin D usually contain animal derived vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol). (There is one form of D3 that is derived from lichen and suitable for vegans, which is marketed as Vitashine). 

The most significant supply of vitamin D (for omnivores as well as vegans) comes from the action of ultra-violet B light on sterols in the skin. Most people, including infants require little or no extra from food when regularly exposed to sunlight when the sun is high in the sky. Bright sunlight is not necessary; even the sky shine on a cloudy summer day will stimulate formation of some D in the skin, while a short summer holiday in the open air will increase blood levels of the vitamin by two or three times the amount.

RAW AVOCADO LIME SOUP + SOUR CREAM

Tastes like heaven :)

Ingredients

2 avocados
¾ of a medium cucumber
1 stalk celery
Juice of 1 lime
Small handful of fresh coriander (cilantro)
2 teaspoons cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon tamari
1 cup water (if wanting warm soup use hot water)
Raw sour cream (see recipe below)
Chives, chopped to garnish

Preparation

  1. Blend all ingredients, except the sour cream and chopped chives in a high-speed blender until smooth.
  2. Transfer to a serving bowl and garnish with sour cream and chopped chives.

Notes

Adapted from Russell James.

VEGAN CARROT CAKE SMOOTHIE
INGREDIENTS
  1. 1 Medium Carrot, washed and chopped (or grated if you’re blender is not high-powered)
  2. 1C Almond milk
  3. 2T Rolled oats (GF if necessary)
  4. 1T Chia seeds
  5. 1t Maca powder
  6. 1/2t Vanilla extract
  7. 3/4t Cinnamon
  8. 1/2t Ground Ginger
  9. Pinch of ground Cloves
  10. Generous grating of Nutmeg
  11. 1T Liquid sweetener (I use yacon syrup and like the slightly molasses-ey flavour, but agave nectar or maple syrup are fine)
  12. 1 Scoop vegan vanilla protein Powder (I like Sunwarrior) OR 1 Frozen Banana
  13. 1/4C Ice
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Add all the ingredients, except the ice, to your blender jar and blend on high until completely smooth. Scrape down sides, check for sweetness, add ice and blend again. Pour into a large glass and enjoy!
NOTES
  1. - If you’re using a frozen banana you may not need the ice.
  2. - Like toppings on your smoothies? Crumbled coconut butter makes a wonderful “frosting”

Raw Banoffee Pie

Ingredients

Crust:

1/2C Walnuts
1/4C +2T Pitted dates, packed
Pinch of salt

Caramel:

1/4C Pitted Dates, packed
1/2T Almond Butter
1/4t Vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
2T Water

Vanilla Bean Coconut Whipped Cream:

1 Can Coconut milk, refrigerated (full-fat) (or for all-raw version use 1 1/2 cups packed thai coconut meat blended with 1/2 cup water or coconut water)
1/2-1 Vanilla bean
2T Coconut sugar

1 Medium-sized Banana

Methods/steps

For the crust:

1) whizz the walnuts and salt in a food processor until you have a coarse crumb.

2) Add dates and process until the mixture sticks together when pressed between 2 fingers.

3) Press crust onto a plate, or into a little tin if you have one, and shape into a circle. Refrigerate while you prepare the other components

For the caramel:

1) In a food processor (I used the mini insert bowl), you might need to double the mixture if you don’t have a small food processor bowl, blend all the caramel ingredients together, stop and scrape down the mixture several times to ensure everything is incorporated. You should end up with a reasonably smooth thick caramel. Try not to eat it all now! Remove to a bowl and refrigerate as well.

For the coconut whipped cream:

1) Finally, prepare the coconut whipped cream. Remove the can of coconut milk from the fridge and carefully remove the thick layer of cream from the top of the can. It should have separated out from the liquid underneath. Be careful not to get any liquid or your coconut cream will be on the runny side (like mine…).

2) With an electric whisk whisk the coconut milk until fluffy and thick.

(if using Thai coconut, simple blend the meat with water until creamy, then whip with an electric whisk.)

3) Using a spice grinder or blender whizz the coconut sugar until powdered (or use powdered sugar).

4) Fold this through the coconut cream along with the seeds of a vanilla bean. Refrigerate while you assemble the pie.

Assembly:

1) Slice the banana and arrange 1/2 the slices over the crust.

2) Spread a thick layer of caramel over the bananas (you won’t need all the caramel so you can keep the rest for later to eat with apple slices dipped in , or spread on another banana).

3) Add a second layer of sliced banana.

4) Top with as much coconut cream as you like, any remaining banana slices, and a dusting of raw cacao powder.

Dragon fruit

Dragon fruit is a beautiful fruit grown in Southeast Asia, Mexico, Central and South America, and Israel. The plant is actually a type of cactus, and the fruit comes in 3 colors: 2 have pink skin, but with different colored flesh (one white, the other red), while another type is yellow with white flesh. Dragon fruit is low in calories and offers numerous nutrients, including Vitamin C, phosphorus, calcium, plus fiber and antioxidants.

Dragon fruit tastes wonderful! - sweet and crunchy, with a flavor that’s like a cross between kiwi and pear.