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My Favorite Products!

I have been a big fan of Way Better chips (unfortunately, since they can be a tad addicting!), especially the Sweet Potato flavor, but this fall they have really made life difficult.  It is so hard to resist their Season’s Eating, Limited Edition Oh, My Sweet Punkin Cranberry Tortilla Chips!

Way Better ChipsNow, the good news is that they are made from some healthier ingredients.  Here’s the list:  Stone ground non-GMO corn, sunflower oil, cranberries, pumpkin, organic sprouted flax seed, organic sprouted quinoa, raspberry, pure sea salt.

If you are chip lover and are looking for something that’s a bit healthier and really tasty, you definitely need to give these a try.  Locally, you can find them at Earthfare and Fresh Market.  Since they are a seasonal product, I don’t know how long they will be around so grab some soon.  Just make sure you leave a bag or two for me!

Healthy Fruit & Nut Cookies

Inspired by Mark Sisson’s Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe (original recipe can be found here on -this website is a great resource!)


4 – 6 dates, pits removed
1 1/2 cup walnuts
1/2 cup pecans
1 tsp baking soda
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons coconut oil
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1/4 – 1/2 cup dried fruit (raisins, dried cranberries, cherries, apricots)


Preheat oven to 350°.

Grind dates in the food processor until a paste forms, about 40 seconds. Add walnuts and pecans and blend until very finely chopped, about 35 seconds. Add baking soda and salt and pulse a few more times.

Warm the coconut oil so it is in liquid form. With the food processor running, drizzle it into the batter with the egg and vanilla. Stop mixing as soon as the egg and oil are blended in.

Scrape the batter into a bowl and stir in coconut and chocolate chips by hand. The dough will be sticky and wet. Drop 12 portions of the dough onto a cookie sheet, then flatten slightly with your fingers.

Bake 15 minutes, or until nicely browned.

Variation: I added a smushed banana to 3-4 dates to make a moister cookie, and pumpkin works too (try 1/4 -1/3 cup).  Add some cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice to make them taste like Autumn!

Good Resources Make Everything Easier

When you are trying to create a healthier life, one of the most frustrating challenges can be where to find ideas, information, recipes, etc.  It is my hope that we can use this space to help each other find everything that we need.  I will continue to post the helpful resources that I find (mainly websites, magazines and cookbooks) and I hope you share any that you like.  (Just send me an email and I’ll add to the lists).

Paleo Magazines

While traveling this summer, I found a great new resource!

Paleo Magazine:

Magazines are a Great Resource

I grew up drooling over the recipes Bon Appetit and my sister always subscribed to Food and Wine, so we had lots of great motivation to get into the kitchen.  Then I found out that I had all kinds of food allergies and I was literally starved for resources.  Over the years (It’s been a few decades since my diagnosis) I have gotten excited every time I see a new cookbook, but when I first saw a gluten-free magazine I could barely believe my eyes!  The first one I found was Living Without and although I just hated the name, I was really impressed with all of the information, recipes and resources they include in every issue.

Now there are a lots of magazines available for all different segments of the food community.  Aside from gluten-free magazines, there are magazines for people who suffer from allergies, who eat “clean” food, and I just saw my first Paleo magazine!

If you have any suggestions of magazine that you find really helpful, let me know and I’ll add it to the list.  And remember – most of these magazines have a website as well so check online for more information and recipes!

Recipes Are Just The Starting Point

The best thing about recipes is that they can be changed – a lot!  Some of the recipes I use started out as someone else’s and I tweaked them to make them a bit healthier.  Some of the recipes I post are mine and I hope you use them as a starting point and tweak them to include ingredients that you like.

If you try anything that works really well and want to share, please do!  You can post your substitutions or variations in the comments section below each recipe.  I happen to think that learning from each other is one of the best parts about cooking, and if we all help and encourage each other down this path towards better health, it makes it an awful lot more fun!

Ingredients Are Everything

Have you ever shared a recipe with someone (or they’ve shared theirs with you) and the two versions don’t taste the same at all?  One of the main reasons that can occur is the quality of the ingredients used, and that is especially true when cooking or baking with more specialty ingredients, or when making substitutions.

When people first start cooking and baking more, one of the big stumbling blocks seems to be finding appropriate ingredients.  Luckily, there are so many more diverse ingredients available to us now.  Even our local grocery stores carry items such as coconut flour and sunflower seed milk which never would have been found even a few years ago.

In future posts, I will be highlighting some of the most widely used healthy ingredients, so if you are having trouble finding something, let me know.  I will do my best to help you with your search!

Home Grown Produce Is The Best!


I did some traveling this summer and was lucky enough to stay with good friends along the way.  One of my friends has a beautiful garden in her backyard, with all kinds of wonderful growy things to choose from when preparing a meal.  The tomatoes were just coming into their own, and the fresh herbs were happy and healthy.  What a feeling of abundance it is to go out the back door and pick dinner!

The best thing about home grown produce, other than knowing how it was grown and what is and isn’t sprayed on it, is the quality of the food.  When you slice up a tomato that has just been picked off the vine, nestle in some fresh basil leaves, all you need to do is sprinkle with a good quality olive oil, maybe some salt and pepper, and you have got the most amazing dish!  It can’t be any simpler than that, and really…. it can’t get much better, either.



Eating healthy meals can be so easy, especially when you start with high quality produce.  If you can’t grow any of your own, find the farmers markets in your area, or get to know your neighbors who have gardens.  Many times they are happy to share or barter.  Getting something that is fresh, full of flavor and full of nutrients – way worth getting your hands dirty!

Because I was out of state for most of the summer, I didn’t get a lot of time to grow things, but since our weather has been so nice, I did just plant herbs in hopes that I will have at least several months of use.  Along with mint and rosemary that survived the winter, I just planted dill, basil, cilantro and parsley.  I still need to find some tarragon, although that is usually the toughest one to locate.  What about you?  Let us know what you are growing this season!

Healthy Aging is Possible!

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Do you have to fill out one of these when you go see your doc?  How many items do you check?  This list belongs to a wonderful woman named Joan who happens to be the mom of one of my good friends. Although I think having only one item to check would be good anytime, the fact that Joan is 80 years old is pretty impressive!

Joan watches what she eats, is very active keeping up with her children and grandchildren and can often be found with her big gloves on going through recycled metal with her daughter who is a metal artist.  Now, really, isn’t that they way we all want to be when we are 80?

It’s never too late to create a healthier life!

Juicing and Blending

Interested in doing some spring-cleaning?!

Healthy Priorities cordially invites you to join us for a fun evening talking about…

Juicing and Blending

It’s almost springtime, so a great time to learn a bit about spring cleaning for our insides. We’ll learn the differences between juicing and blending, why everyone is so excited about their “green drinks”, and why it might be just the thing to add to your daily meal plan.

  • DATE: Tuesday, March 19th
  • TIME: 7:00 p.m.
  • LOCATION: Please note new location! Cathy Burger has volunteered her home this month! 1300 Aringill Lane (near the Siskey YMCA).
  • COST: Donations for groceries are always appreciated but never required!

CONTACT: or 704.222.6328

RSVP: Please email to let me know if you will be attending so we can make sure we have enough chairs, etc.

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Click here for flyer:  Juicing and Blending