Monthly Archives: July 2018

Delectable Blueberry Delights!

on July 31, 2018 by: Dr. Stacey Richards 0 Comments

Delectable Blueberry Delights!

Sweet and slightly tart, blueberries are a refreshing fruity treat in the heat of summer. What’s even better is that blueberries have been proven to help maintain and boost bone strength, mental health, and blood pressure. Blueberries can even help protect against heart disease and certain cancers! Join us below as we talk about Delectable Blueberry Delights.

Blueberries and Nutrients Galore!

Let’s take a moment to get “technical” about blueberries. While we mostly know them as a delicious round bite of fruit, blueberries are a little bit more than that. They’re full of anthocyanin – a natural antioxidant that gives blueberries a majority of their nutritious benefits.

That’s not all they’re full of though! They’re also rich in such nutrients as iron, calcium, magnesium, vitamin K, vitamin C, and zinc! Not to mention fiber, potassium, and vitamin B6.

But what do all of these nutrients packed into such a tiny package do for you and your health?  Below are just a few examples of what blueberries can do for you!

  • Skin health

    • Collagen is the skin’s support system and little supports collagen as well as Vitamin C. One cup of blueberries can provide up to 24% of your daily Vitamin C intake, which also boosts your collagen. Together, they work to help enhance your skin texture, prevent skin damage from things such as the sun, and help smooth out wrinkles in your skin.
  • Lower Blood Pressure

    • Blueberries are sodium free so they won’t increase your sodium intake and can even help maintain or reduce blood pressure.
  • Heart Disease Protection

    • Everything in a blueberry – the fiber, the vitamin C, the vitamin B6, the folate, and more – all contributes to heart health. Fiber helps to reduce cholesterol in the blood; Vitamin B6 and folate prevent homocysteine build-up, which in turn prevents blood vessel and heart problems.
  • Antioxidants Galore

    • The mix of vitamins and nutrients in blueberries all comes together to work as powerful antioxidants that can help protect cells against diseases. Some research suggests it may even help inhibit tumor growth and decrease inflammation in the body!
  • Mental Health Boost

    • Some studies have shown that eating a proper serving of blueberries can help slow down cognitive decline – especially in older women! They’ve even been shown to help improve short term memory and motor coordination.
  • Digest Away

    • Due to the high fiber content of blueberries, they’re excellent as helping prevent constipation. Dietary fiber, such as the fiber in blueberries, has also been linked to weight loss and weight management.

One important thing to note is that blueberries are high in Vitamin K. If you are taking any kind of blood thinners, consult your doctor before you increase or add blueberries to your diet as Vitamin K is important to blood clotting and could affect your blood-thinning medication.

Time to eat Delectable Blueberry Delights!

Today we’re making muffins! More specifically, we’re making gluten-free and dairy-free Cinnamon Apple Blueberry Muffins!

Muffins aren’t always the healthiest option, but with our modifications, these muffins are at least a bit healthier than the ones you get at the store – and they’re tasty to boot!


Cinnamon Apple Blueberry Muffins

Cinnamon Apple Blueberry Muffins


  • 2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¾ cup of unsweetened soy milk (or other non-dairy milk of choice)
  • ¼ cup coconut oil
  • ¼ cup unpasteurized honey
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup of all-purpose gluten free flour
  • 1 cup of whole wheat gluten free flour
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup frozen or fresh blueberries (if frozen, do not thaw)
  • 1 apple, cored, peeled, and diced



  1. Heat oven to 400℉. Spray 12 regular-size muffin cups with cooking spray or line muffin tin with paper baking cups.
  2. In small bowl, mix brown sugar and cinnamon. Set aside for later.
  3. In large bowl, beat milk, coconut oil, honey, and egg together. Stir in flours, baking powder, and salt – only stir until flours are moistened.
  4. Gently fold in blueberries and apple pieces.
  5. Divide batter evenly among muffin cups (fill about ⅔ of the way full).
  6. Sprinkle brown sugar and cinnamon mixture on top of unbaked muffins.
  7. Bake 20 minutes or until golden brown.
  8. Remove from pan and cool.
  9. Enjoy a delicious fruit-packed treat!
Cinnamon Apple Blueberry Muffins

Cinnamon Apple Blueberry Muffins


Now, the above recipe may be delicious, but there’s a myriad of other things you can put blueberries in to enjoy them throughout your summer.

Those are just a few ideas! There’s so many things you can make with blueberries – throw it on your oatmeal, in your yogurt or smoothie, or just eat them plain. No matter what, you’re sure to be getting delectable blueberry delight packed full of nutrients, vitamins, and antioxidants – and there’s nothing better than that! 

Sensational Summer Sangria Pitcher and Cups

Sensational Summer Sangria!

on July 3, 2018 by: Dr. Stacey Richards 0 Comments

This Tasty Tuesday, try our Sensational Summer Sangria!

Over the summer, we’ll be sneaking a peek into our picnic baskets to bring you all our favourite summer recipes. We’ve got sensational summer sangria for refreshments; popsicles to keep you cool; gluten free muffins to start your morning off right, and even more! 

To start the summer off right, we’ll dive right into our Sensational Summer Sangria recipes.

What is Sangria?

The word “sangria” comes from the Latin word for “blood.” It’s an alcoholic punch with Spanish roots. The reddish hue of the wine is what gave sangria its name. The current sangria trend can be dated back to the 1964 World’s Fair in New York City, however sangria has been around in various forms since the Middle Ages!

Red wine and chopped fruit are the most common ingredients in sangria. However some recipes allow for the addition of brandy, sparkling water, or even flavoured liqueur! 

One of the best things about Sangria is that you can tailor it to your own tastes. A number of recipes use a variety of fruits, but you can use as few or as many as you would like. Common fruits used include pineapple, peaches, berries, apples, or pears.

What kind of wine makes a Sensational Sangria? 

One thing to remember about red sangria is that it’s considered a rather strong drink. Which means the kind of red wine you use will have a great impact on the kind of sangria you make. 

Wines made from the tempranillo grapes in the Rioja regions of Spain are the classic choice for sangria. However you can choose pretty much any red wine that suits your palate! 

Garnacha wine has a great acidity and helps make rich, red fruits really shine when used to make sangria. Primitivo and Zinfandel are good for sangria when mixed with more jammy fruits such as strawberries or blackberries. But those are just suggestions – the beauty of sangria is you can make it with the wine you most prefer!

Look for reasonably priced dry red wines. Their simpler fruit-driven flavours and aromas are perfect for sangria.

Avoid older wines, tannic reds, and more complex wines as they are usually too delicate for mixing and can affect the taste of sangria.

Sangria Blanca

If red wine isn’t your style, Sangria Blanca may be the one for you!

Sangria Blanca is made with dry white wine for a slightly sweeter flavour. Wines such as Pinot Grigio, dry Riesling, or Sauvignon Blanc are ideal for Sangria Blanca. 

Since white wine tends to be more fruity, they can help showcase the flavours of the fruits in the sangria. But it’s a double-edged wine glass as the abundance of fruity flavours in white wine also make it more difficult to make the right sangria blend. If a sangria recipe calls for lemon, for example, you might want to avoid a citrus-based white wine as the overall acidity will affect the taste of the sangria.

Aim for white wines with scents and flavours that complement the fruits in your sangria.

Avoid heavily oaked wines, older wines, more complex wines, and wines with a high alcohol content as they can all affect the flavour of your Sangria Blanca.

What if I don’t like red or white wine?

Red and white wine aren’t for everyone. The good news is that you can use pretty much any kind of wine for sangria. 

Rosé wine, with its gorgeous pink hues, can help create some delightful colour and flavour combinations.  Berry fruits such as raspberries or cranberries are ideal lighter flavours and aromas of rosé. 

Sparkling wine can add a little bit of bubbly zest to your sangria. You can easily use it in place of white or rosé wines, but try to avoid older sparkling wines and always wait until you’re ready to serve to add the bubbles.

Dessert wines can be a bit trickier to use in sangria, but if you look for simple and fruity wines, you can create a sipping delight.

Stay away from fortified wines such as port and stick to off-sweet and lower alcohol content dessert wines for the ideal dessert wine sangria.

But is Sangria healthy?

Of course, we have to touch on the health aspects of all of our Tasty Tuesday recipes, otherwise we wouldn’t be doing a good job helping you stay healthy! 

Moderation is key for a lot of things, especially alcohol. But when it comes to red wine, it’s on the healthier side of things. A 5 ounce serving of red wine has as little as 125 calories and 4 grams of carbs. The high number of antioxidants in red wine make it a more healthy alcohol. Moderate amounts of red wines (and a few other alcohols) may help reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke by slightly “boosting” the healthy cholesterol in your system. Red wine may also help reduce your risks of cancer, dementia, or depression when consumed in moderate amounts. 

In North America and Europe, moderate amounts of red wine are considered to be about 5 ounces a day for women and up to 10 ounces a day for men. This refers to total alcohol consumption, though, so if you also drink other alcohols in a day, that could push you over the limit, so to speak. 

High alcohol intake can increase your risk for heart disease, as well as high blood pressure and certain cancers.

Other wines such as rosés, whites, and sweet wines typically contain fewer antioxidants thanks to how they are made, so they don’t hold as many benefits as red wine. Try to stick with moderate amounts – or less – of these wines.

Wine-soaked fruits add vitamins – but only if you eat them!

The other healthy benefit of sangria is the addition of fruit and fruit juices. When you add things such as oranges or 100% orange juice (with no added sugars), you also add vitamin C to your drink. Depending on the types of fruits or juices you add, you could also be adding fiber and potassium or other vitamins. Of course, to actually take in those nutrients, you’ll have to eat the wine-soaked fruit – but who could turn down that level of delicious flavour? 

Some recipes call for added sugar, which can negate the healthy benefits of sangria. Be sure to avoid added sugar where possible! Try honey or agave nectar for healthier alternatives.

Bring on the Sensational Summer Sangria!

Enough about all of that – although if you have any questions feel free to let us know – let’s break out the recipes! For your summer refreshment and enjoyment, we’ve got a variety of options below. 

Red Wine Sensational Summer Sangria

  • For a healthy, no-sugar added delight full of pineapple, pears, oranges, strawberries, and oranges, check out the Healthiest Summer Sangria Ever !
  • Looking to keep your heart healthy this summer? Try this Heart-Healthy Sangria with lime, lemons, pears, oranges, and red wine, sweetened with a little bit of stevia!
  • Love raspberries and agave nectar? Then this Low Sugar Raspberry Sangria is your ideal refreshment!
  • For an extra chilly wine treat, check out this Frozen Raspberry Peach Sangria! Frozen raspberries, peaches, and agave nectar make this a healthier, boozey cocktail for those hot summer nights.

White Wine Sensational Summer Sangria

  • On the keto diet but don’t want to miss out on any summer fun? Let this Low Carb Sparkling White Sangria to tingle your taste buds without affecting your diet!
  • Oranges, limes, and lemons, oh my! This Easy Citrus White Wine Sangria features whine wine, vodka, and a dash of mint, to make an eclectic and delicious cool white wine summer treat!
  • Dive into perfect peaches and resplendent raspberries with this White Peach Sangria that uses honey as a natural sweetener!

Rosé Sensational Summer Sangria

  • A myriad of melons, with a dash of rosé and elderflower liqueur make this Summer Melon Rosé Sangria the perfect refreshment for your summer picnics!
  • Strawberries and peaches are the stars of this Rosé Sangria . Add a little bit of sparkling water just before serving for refreshing bubbles!

Non-Alcoholic Sensational Summer Sangria

  • Wine not your thing? Kids wanting a “grown-up” drink at your family picnics? Why not check out this Healthy Non-Alcoholic Sangria that uses grape juice (with no added sugar) instead?
  • Break out some white grape juice for this Vegan Non-Alcoholic Sangria. Full of blueberries, oranges, bananas, and peaches, you’ll be sure to get all your essential vitamins in one drink!

Enjoy your Sensational Summer Sangrias!

Sensational Summer Sangria is a delightfully refreshing cocktail you can easily add to your summer picnic baskets. With the added benefit of nutrient-dense fruit and the health benefits of red wine, it’s the perfect healthy summer treat. 

Check out the recipes above and be sure to let us know which ones are your favourites! If you create your own, let us know and we’ll feature it on our Facebook page!

Happy Sensational Summer Sangria making!