Tips on Recovering from Food Poisoning/Stomach flu

Really I think there are only 4  things that can be done when you have a bug/bacteria like the one we got.

  1. Let it pass
  2. Stay hydrated
  3. Listen to your body – if something doesn’t feel right, DON’T eat it. Your body knows best what you need.
  4. Rest

I was told at the hospital to stay hydrated with fluids such as gatorade. But when I spoke to my Guru Doctor, he explained that Gatorade has way too much sugar and chemicals and is not the best hydrant. The best hydrant is coconut water and it is pure. The vomiting also gave me severe heartburn and he suggested some aloe water also to coat my stomach.

Note: before I spoke to him, I was drinking the gatorade suggested at the hospital and I noticed that every time I drank a little cup, my heartburn would kick in again. I don’t really know why but it wasn’t helping. When I switched to the aloe water it soothed me much more. My doctor had also told me that I should replenish my body with a little protein. He suggested that I drink a tiny cup of (quarter cup) warm grass-fed milk with a little bit of raw protein powder. I plan to interview him soon so he can explain why he suggested this for me. But in any event I listened to him and it was what soothed my heartburn the most.

My mother came over as soon as I got home from the hospital and did the best thing she could ever do for my husband and I…she took care of the kids so we could sleep! My body really needed to recover and we slept and slept. She also made us some soothing chicken soup.

I got sick on Saturday evening. On Sunday I only had liquids…I didn’t feel my body was ready even for the chicken soup yet, so I sipped a little of the broth and put it away. On Monday, my vomiting and diarreah were gone but my stomach remained weak and vulnerable (as did Orlando’s). We both had some of my mom’s chicken soup for lunch and  stayed hydrated with coconut water and aloe water throughout the day.

I also passed by a great little place I love and got myself a Wugup shake. I did this based on the assumption that I needed to replenish my body (and the baby) with protein and good stuff. This shake has protein, mamey, cacao, spirulina….all great ingredients that are mild enough for my stomach to tolerate a couple of days after the bug. I drank it with lots of caution and sip by sip but my body told me it was okay and slowly I started to recover.

By the end of the day, I had only had a little bit of that shake and chicken soup and Orlando had only had some soup. We both felt we needed vegetables at dinnertime but couldn’t imagine eating actual food. We wanted a creamy, silky kind of soup that would restore our bodies.

Something that came to mind was a potato leek soup because it had the consistency we were looking for…but Orlando wanted it to have more than just potatoes and leeks. He wanted lots of good stuff. So out of this virus was born Orlando’s Potato Leek Soup version which was exactly what we needed to get us back on track.

Here is the recipe: (This makes a huge crock pot of soup so if you don’t want to make too much, you may want to cut your quantities in half – but we’re a family of four so we make big portions)

  • 1 head of Broccoli
  • 5 medium Yukon gold potatoes
  • 2 extra large leeks (or 3-4 small leeks)
  • 2 large carrots sliced
  • 1 basket of mushrooms chopped
  • 1 inch of grated ginger
  • 1 head of roasted garlic
  • 1 stick of celery
  • 1/2 onion
  • 1/4 stick of organic unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup of organic grassfed buttermilk
  • 1/2 cream of whipping cream
  • 1 quart of vegetable stock (about 48 ounces)
  • dash of cumin
  • powder ginger
  • kosher salt
  • black pepper
  • chives
  • thyme
Note: Don’t get overwhelmed by the sheer quantity of ingredients. Some of these ingredients were used simply because we had them available at home- like the thyme, the ginger, etc.. Orlando loves to look through the fridge and add goodness to his soups and recipes whenever he can. You can feel free to add or subtract some of these ingredients depending on your availability also.
  • Chop up leeks, carrots, celery, and onion- sautee in a large crock pot with a little salt and olive oil.
  • After those are cooked through, rough chop the mushrooms and toss them in there with a little spray of olive oil and salt to coat them.
  • Cube the potatoes and toss in with the broccoli – continue to sautee
  • Add vegetable stock, bring to boil, and reduce to simmer, cover for 45 minutes.
  • throw in about 6 cloves of roasted garlic, heavy cream and buttermilk. – dash of salt
  • cover and cook for another 5 minutes.
  • Blend the soup with a hand blender.
  • Serve and sprinkle with chives
This soup really hit the spot for us. It was full of healing foods and it was the creamy consistency we so desperately needed. We each ate a bowl and called it a night. By Tuesday, we were feeling much better!!!!


Following your Gut

My dear friends,

What a terrible experience I went through this weekend. My husband and I took the boys to the falls to get their haircuts and decided to stop at Los Ranchos for dinner. I ordered the mini churrasco (steak) because I don’t eat red meat very often. I figured it would be a nice treat. My husband ordered chicken fajitas. When the meal came, I asked if they could give me some black or red beans alone with the meat. I was told they only serve “gallo pinto” (rice with beans). I don’t eat rice so already I was disappointed. I decided to eat the steak alone with some of the vegetables my kids got and plantains. The moment my tongue touched the steak, I felt uncomfortable. The steak didn’t taste good to me. It was tough, super hard to chew, and I didn’t like it. I expressed this to my husband and he tasted it and told me it was fine. I started to complain to him. I wasn’t happy with the steak. Orlando, in an effort to make me happy, offered to make me a fajita with his steak. He put some guacamole and sour cream and put it in a fajita. I ate it but I wasn’t happy or pleased. That experience got me thinking about the last couple of days (since Thanksgiving) and I realized I just wasn’t eating as clean as I’m used to. The holidays are a happy, lovely, time but they sneak in a host of temptations and deviations from your regular lifestyle that can really creep up on you if you’re not careful. I didn’t have this problem last year, I seemed to be more well centered. But maybe because of my grandmother’s passing, and my pregnancy, I have been more out of whack this time around and so have my decisions.

I digress… in order not to be a total downer, I ate the steak and the fajita but I was down about the whole thing. When we left the restaurant at around 6:30pm I turned to my husband and said, “I don’t like this place, I don’t like that food, I just don’t feel well about how I ate.” We went home, I bathed the kids, put them to bed, and by 7pm I was feeling a little queezy.  I laid down to rest, and by 8pm I was vomiting. To spare you of the horrible details, I will fast forward to 3:30am when I called my father to drive me to the hospital so my husband can stay with the children and avoid waking them up. By the time I arrived at the hospital I had lost about 5lbs, was severely dehydrated, and was having contractions. I had food poisoning. I’m 30 weeks pregnant now and my main concern was the health of the baby. Luckily he was unharmed by my sickness and a few iv’s stopped my contractions and made me feel better.

So the bottom line? I was right about the steak. It was bad. Orlando tried my steak- didn’t eat the whole thing just a few pieces. As I returned from the hospital he entered the bathroom with a milder version of my symptoms. My children did not eat the steak and thankfully did not get sick. We were contaminated on Saturday. On Monday we still could not eat.

So the reason I opted to title this post “Follow Your Gut” is because I learned quite a lesson from this experience. My body was telling me not to eat the steak. My tongue knew something was wrong. Its not like I could taste the bacteria but I just knew. And instead of returning it or not eating anymore, what did I do…I put it in a fajita to disguise it. I’m the one to blame! We need to trust ourselves.

I think this food poisoning was actually a blessing in disguise for both Orlando and I. I’ve said this before, but I can’t help to reiterate it because this is all part of our journey… sometimes we forget why we eat healthy. Its so incredibly easy to start making exceptions to your lifestyle because of the food culture we live in. This experience threw both of us in recovery mode and re-centered us. It made us realize why we eat the way we eat…because it makes us feel good!!!!!!!!! And to be honest, being sick isn’t fun. And I don’t only mean being sick to the extreme like I was. I also mean the general ill feeling that often accompanies eating poorly. Feeling stuffed, lethargic, loss of energy, overweight, headaches, body aches, depression, fatigue…a lot of our symptoms are related to food and we don’t realize it.

Inevitably, the Holidays will lead to some dietary exceptions but hopefully my experience will make you think twice before you eat something that you know is not good for you. Just ask yourself the question… is this worth it? You’d be shocked how many things you’d normally eat that you really don’t care to eat.

As for us…we are on the road to recovery again and tomorrow I will post some recipes that helped us get there.



Lil Orly and his School Thanksgiving Lunch

Every once in a while, parents have an aha moment where all their efforts seem to be paying off. It doesn’t happen all the time, and you never really know with these kids what’s sinking in and what’s not…so if you have this moment, relish it! I had such a moment today when I picked up my kids from school. As I walked down the hall with a boy on each hand, the principle called out to me from her office and told me she wanted to speak to me about my son Orly. There was a group of teachers in the room and by the way the principle looked at me, I got the sense she was going to tell me Orly had misbehaved in some way, but luckily that was not the case!  She started telling us all the story of how she went into Orly’s class today for observations and they were serving Thanksgiving Lunch. On the plate, they served Turkey, Broccoli florets, Corn on the cob, and applesauce. She said that most of the kids stared at the food and refused to eat it. But she couldn’t believe it when she saw Orly say to his friends…Oh, I LOVE Broccoli! She said he ate his floret and another child gave him her piece of broccoli. She said he then took that floret and dipped it in his applesauce and proudly took a big bite.

So she felt compelled to call me into her office and let me know how impressed she was that my son ate so well. She said most of the kids would not even try the corn, much less the broccoli. And she couldn’t believe how open he was about how much he liked broccoli and corn and how he dipped the broccoli in the apple sauce. I felt so proud that he ate his food but most of all I felt proud that he admitted he liked the broccoli even when his friends didn’t. I have always wondered how my children will react when they start getting older and their friends don’t eat the same way they do. I am fully aware that the next time this happens Orly may succumb to the peer pressure or maybe at some point he will reject certain foods because his friends do also. But TODAY I am thankful that he didn’t.  I am thankful that I have the opportunity to teach him things that about food and nutrition that I didn’t grow up knowing about. I am thankful that I have my husband’s full support and that we’ve made eating healthy a family journey.

As the principle shared this story with me, Orly and Justin both had lolipops in their mouths that they got after the Thanksgiving lunch; at that very moment I felt a sense of balance in our lives. Sure they love their lolipops and sweets…but they love their broccoli too…and I pray that positive balance carries with them into their adult lives and spreads into all areas of their beings. What a blessing that would be.


Tilapia and its fatty acids

So I love having Tilapia at the house because its so easy to cook. But speaking with my doctor once he had mentioned to me that Tilapia was  a vulnerable fish that had Omega 6 fatty acids and those fatty acids become inflammatory instead of “anti-inflammatory”when exposed to hight heat.

I did some research of my own and have not found too much but did find that these Omega 6 fatty acids are found in the farm-raised Tilapia based on what the tilapia is fed in order to raise it cheap and make Tilapia inexpensive.

The doc did tell me that in order to protect the Tilapia and get the most health benefits from it, the best way to cook it is wrapped in aluminum foil, baked and preserved in lemon and onions. As opposed to one of my favorite methods…cooked in high heat until crispy- Yummy!

As a result of this conversation, I have eliminated Tilapia as a staple in our family’s diet. We eat plenty of salmon and tuna and we all take omega 3 supplements a few times a week (more on supplements another day). But the other day, I was in a rush to make food for the boys and I happened to have some Tilapia in the freezer.  I decided to give this new cooking method a try and see how it worked out for the kids…and I was PLEASANTLY SURPRISED!!!!

This is what I did…

  • I put the tilapia on a sheet of aluminum foil
  • I seasoned it with Herbamare

  • drizzled a generous amount of lemon on top
  • chopped up some onions and leeks and placed them on top of the fish
  • closed up the aluminum foil
  • baked at 350 for about 15 minutes or so.

I also made some Quinoa with frozen green peas and frozen green beans inside and when the tilapia was done I laid it on top of the quinoa so the whole meal could have a lemony flavor. The kids LOVED It. The fish was so soft and flaky – perfect texture for small children.

And it tasted quite delicious, despite my alternate cooking method. I would highly recommend you to try this dish as a quick and easy meal to whip up for dinner.

Have a wonderful week!!!

Stuffed Acorn Squash…and family

Hello all,

It has been a while since I’ve posted any new recipes or thoughts on this blog and there definitely is a reason for that… 2 weeks ago today my grandmother unexpectedly suffered a massive stroke while sitting at home. To make a long story short, she was rushed to the hospital where she was treated for about a week and on Tuesday November 6, she passed away. It was a difficult time for our family and between juggling children, pregnancy, work, and the emotions that come at a time like this….I neglected to sit down in front of my computer and post thoughts about food. But now as the weeks have meshed together and the funeral has passed, life slowly starts going back to normal…only a new normal where my grandmother’s presence is now a memory and only our stories and pictures will keep her alive in our hearts. It is the natural progression of life..the passing of a generation…but difficult nonetheless.

The one positive aspect of my grandmother’s passing was that, as grief often does, it brought our family together during this difficult time. For the days following my grandmother’s funeral, her home became a gathering place filled with food and love and support for all of us…especially her sister who was her life companion.

Everyone brought food. Arroz con pollo, lechon, congri, bread, desserts…the list goes on and on! There were lots of options but nothing healthy. After spending a week eating salads in a hospital and trying to maintain my lifestyle (with some exceptions of course) all I wanted was a healthy home cooked meal. I went home one night and Orlando had made a delicious Stuffed Acorn Squash. He always makes larger quantities so naturally I had leftovers the next day. I thought, why don’t I take my squash to my grandma’s house and let everyone try it. It was only a small portion…definitely not enough for anyone to serve it as their meal, but I figured I could give everyone a taste and hopefully plant a seed that healthy food can be delicious.

The results were overwhelming. Everyone LOVED the squash. And at that very moment I knew that we had successfully planted a seed. We were able to introduce something new to people we love and create awareness about our lifestyle. Of course I can’t say that some of my family members will all of a sudden start eating healthy…but they may be open to trying some healthy recipes from time to time…and most importantly they’ll be open to the idea that they can ENJOY food that is good for them and medicinal. After all, life is to enjoy.

So on to Orlando’s recipe:

Acorn squash stuffed with ground turkey and vegetables



  • 5 small acorn squash
  • 1/2 large onion
  • 2 carrots chopped
  • 2 leeks sliced
  • 1/2 red and 1/2 green pepper chopped
  • 4 ounces of mushrooms chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves sliced
  • 2 turkey sausages chopped in small pieces (about a half pound) I like the apple turkey sausage for this recipe. Easy to find
  • 1 lb ground turkey (93/7 lean)
  • 2 Macintosh apples cored and roughly chopped
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup of breadcrumbs (make your own with about 3 slices of Ezekiel bread toasted and then placed in a food processor)
  • 3 sage leaves chopped
  • Salt/pepper/sason completo

Pre-heat the oven at 400

Slice the tops off of the acorn squash and empty out the seeds making a bowl out of the squash.

Slice of the tip at the bottom of the squash so it can stand upright. Drizzle the inside with olive oil and salt and bake for 1 hour

Sauté onions, leeks, carrots, and peppers in olive oil until almost carmelized adding salt at the beginning. Add sausage and cook through.

Add apples, garlic, and sage and sauté for another 2 minutes

Set mixture aside.

Sauté the ground turkey adding salt, pepper, and sason completo until browned. Drain the liquid and combine the turkey with the vegetable/sausage mixture and let cool.

Once cooled add the eggs and bread crumbs. Mix well and stuff into the cooked acorn squash.

Top with breadcrumbs and bake at 400 for another 20 minutes

…And during this Thanksgiving season it is a wonderful time to enjoy different squashes and make these homey Fall meals.