Such a year, so many changes and adaptations. Our family has moved back to our beloved town of Ramat Beit Shemesh, Israel. Amidst a heartrending few months of sky-high emotional turmoil and loss (another post, for another time), I can say that I am the happiest I have ever been. I found Yoga again: Iyengar and the way it makes me feel purposeful. I buy myself flowers every Friday and went shopping this week for new clothes. I am making an effort to take care of myself in every way. I discovered that when I don’t, maybe I’m trying to focus on my kids or my husband too much, everyone ends up suffering immeasurably. So introducing my new wellness challenge: goodbye sugar!
I’ve read too many articles and medical studies that show that sugar consumption is outrageously high and is negatively affecting our health. Dr. Robert Lustig, a pediatric endocrinologist, likes to call himself the “anti processed food guy.” Here is his skinny on the obesity-sugar connection.
I’m lucky to have an amazing community of friends both in my neighborhood and online. We’re going sugar free, and hoping that our families might too.
Yesterday was my first day off of sugar and it went surprisingly well (except for the peanut butter chocolate bar I wolfed down before bedtime and then felt as guilty as if I’d stolen it from the store). This morning I woke up to the sweet smell of apples and cinnamon. Before bed I set up the slow cooker on a timer and mixed together the ingredients for a whole-grain brown rice porridge. It was piping hot when my kids and I woke up and was delightful with just a bit of honey and raisins on top.
Slow Cooker Brown Rice Porridge with Apples
3 cups round brown rice (you can use standard brown rice or Basmati but the texture will be less porridge-like and more similar to rice)
9 cups liquid (I use a combination of unsweetened almond milk and water
1 tbsp cinnamon
1-2 tbsp chia seeds (optional)
4 apples, peeled and diced
1 tsp sea salt
2 tbsp good quality oil (olive, coconut, etc.)
Combine ingredients in a large slow cooker. Set the timer to cook on low for 7 hours. My slow cooker is simple and doesn’t have an internal timer. I use a clock on my outlet and set the time so the porridge starts to cook at around 11 pm. Cook on low for 7-8 hours. Serve with a bit of honey or maple syrup and raisins.