It’s been a crazy busy week for me here, finishing 2 courses and running my brownie business, so I asked my good friend Caitlin (who also happens to be a Culinary Nutritionist and a Holistic Nutritionist) to do a guest post. She write a blog called Healthy Bites by Caitlin. After you read this, you should head over there and subscribe and explore. On top of amazing delicious and healthy recipes (with lots of great knowledge coming with them), she’s got gorgeous landscape photos from her recent cross Canada roadtrip!
I’m so happy to have Caitlin’s delicious Immunity Latte to share with you today. I actually made one this morning, and snapped a picture of it…it just sounded like a good idea on this crazy snow day to boost my immunity. Here in Toronto we’re having one of the biggest snow storms in years. Now, yes, there is turmeric in here, but it works. It’s warming and really you just taste a comforting sweetness more than anything. I didn’t have any coconut milk on hand, so I used almond milk heated in a saucepan instead of water, and stirred in some coconut oil for antibacterial purposes after. Just stir as you drink to keep it blended. Yum!
It’s fitting that Caitlin’s chose some super awesome spices in her recipe, because I just finished my Herbal Medicine class this week, in which I learned lots of the same wonderful info. We should all use more spices!
Now I’ll pass the rest of this post over to Caitlin.
Hi friends, old and new! I’m so excited Lauren asked me to write a guest post on her blog and hope you all enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it. Having been to Lauren’s for dinner and acted as an unofficial brownie taste tester I know that her recipes are unbelievably delicious. I thought that you may enjoy a deliciously creamy and shockingly healthy spiced drink to have with one of her baked goods so I’ve decided to share my recipe for an Immune Supporting Spiced Turmeric Latte. Now most lattes are made with coffee, which can have highly stimulating and dehydrating effects on our bodies, and cow’s milk, which can cause inflammation or digestive issues in many people. Since I have personally never enjoyed coffee and milk does… unpleasant… things to me I decided to put a healthy spin on a classic. I actually created this drink during the throes of a horrible flu during which I lost my voice and basically just mixed together a bunch of things in my cupboard I knew had health benefits. The recipe has since been refined, my knowledge of why the ingredients are immune supportive has been filled out, and the end result will have even your coffee loving friends saying “mmmmmm.”
The ingredients for this recipe are incredibly simple: cinnamon, turmeric, cloves, ginger, coconut milk, and raw honey. What’s important with this recipe is how you actually combine them together because if you add the spices and coconut milk to the hot water you can end up with a clumpy mess. I chose these specific ingredients due to their amazing health benefits, especially in terms of supporting the immune system so you can prevent or fight off that nasty cold going around your workplace. I like to drink it at least a few times a week and if I feel like I’m about to get sick, at least twice a day.
Cinnamon: Does anything make your house smell quite as good as warmed cinnamon? I don’t think so! It turns out the volatile oils responsible for that delightfully homey and delicious scent also have amazing antimicrobial effects to help ward off any nasty bacteria that may be weakening your immune system.
Turmeric: This beautiful spice is going to turn our drink an amazingly vibrant yellow colour. That bright colour is an indicator of huge amounts of antioxidants and everyone should consume as many of these as possible. Additional health benefits of this earthy spice include anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, and antibacterial actions in the body. All of these great actions will help support your body in either preventing or fighting off illness.
Ginger: This spice is packs another powerful punch in terms of immune protection. If you’re already sick with a fever, its volatile oils will help promote perspiration and cool the body. Ginger is also super useful in treating sore throats and upset tummies so I like it include it as a little bit of an insurance policy. Combined with all the antiviral, antimicrobial, and antifungal effects of all our other ingredients, ginger definitely rounds out this bevvie so all our bases are covered. Plus it just plain tastes good and isn’t that the number one priority?
Cloves: Cloves have a very distinctive and powerful smell and if there’s one thing I learned during all my nutrition schooling it’s that the stronger the smell, the stronger the action! Like ginger, cloves are good for treating tummy aches and they have localized antiseptic properties, which is especially helpful if you’re suffering from a sore throat. Clove oil is also recommended for individuals undertaking parasite cleanses thanks to its antihelmintic action(that means it kills parasites and worms).
Coconut Milk: I like to use coconut milk as a replacement for regular dairy in most of my recipes, and not just because I’m a self-confessed coconut junkie. This milk is thick and luscious with a delicious taste that perfectly balances the spices we’ll be using. Aside from its overwhelming deliciosity, coconut milk contains a specific medium chain saturated fat called capric acid. This fat has antiviral and antimicrobial effects because it is converted to a substance called monocaprin in the body. Monocaprin is somewhat of a superhero in the body since it fights off evil bacteria, viruses, and even Candida albicans, taking some of the heat off of our immune systems.
Raw Honey: Now I’m not talking your run-of-the-mill honey that is likely packaged in a plastic bear bottle. I’m talking the good stuff. The stuff you get from farmer’s markets, health food stores, or independent co-ops. Some of the bigger name grocery stores are also starting to carry raw honey (also referred to as unpasteurized), so it is becoming much easier to find. This delicious sweetener actually has some pretty fantastic health benefits thanks to the various enzymes and minerals it contains. Honey has antimicrobial, antiviral, and antifungal effects in the body and it has antioxidant properties that help strengthen your immune system.
Alright, now that you’ve made it through all my super useful nutritional info here’s what you’ve been waiting for: The Recipe!
- • ½ tsp. ground cinnamon
- • ½ tsp. ground turmeric
- • ¼ tsp. dried ginger
- • pinch of ground cloves
- • 2-3 tbsp. coconut milk
- • 1 tbsp. raw honey (I like mine slightly sweeter, so you can adjust to your taste preferences)
- • Put a kettle on to boil.
- • Combine spices in a mug.
- • Add coconut milk. I prefer to use an organic coconut milk that does contain guar gum for this recipe as it helps to keep the coconut milk from separating from the water. This is mostly an aesthetic preference. Thai Kitchen Organic is the one I usually use.
- • Mix together until smooth and there are no visible balls of dried spice left. You may want to use a fork for this part.
- • Add boiling water and stir in honey.
- • Cover for 3-5 minutes to prevent the volatile oils, and all their goodness, from escaping.
- • Enjoy!
Thanks for having me today folks and I hope you enjoy my latte. Happy eating!