Fresh Homemade Summer Pesto Pasta

Pine nuts nutrition facts
Crunchy yet butter textured, pleasantly sweet and delicious pine nuts are small edible seeds of female cone in a pine tree. Pine kernels are, indeed, very good source of plant derived nutrients, essential minerals, vitamins and “heart friendly” mono-unsaturated fatty acids that help benefit in reducing cholesterol levels in the blood.
Health benefits of pine nuts
* Pine nuts are one of the calorie-rich edible nuts. 100 g of dry-kernels provide 673 calories. Additionally, they comprise of numerous health promoting phyto-chemicals, vitamins, antioxidants, and minerals.
* Their high caloric content chiefly comes from fats. Indeed, the nuts are especially rich in mono-unsaturated fatty acids like oleic acid (18:1 undifferentiated fat) that helps to lower LDL or “bad cholesterol” and increases HDL or “good-cholesterol” in the blood. Research studies suggest that Mediterranean diet which contain good amounts of monounsaturated fatty acids, vitamins and antioxidants, helps to prevent coronary artery disease and strokes by favoring healthy blood lipid profile.
* Pine or cedar nuts contain essential fatty acid (omega-6 fat), pinolenic acid. Recent research has shown its potential use in weight loss by curbing appetite. Pinolenic acid triggers the release of hunger-suppressant enzymes cholecystokinin and glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) in the gut. In addition, pinolenic acid has thought to have LDL-lowering properties by enhancing hepatic LDL uptake.
* Likewise in almonds, pines too are an excellent source of vitamin E; contain about 9.33 mg per 100 g (about 62% of RDA). Vitamin E is a powerful lipid soluble antioxidant, required for maintaining the integrity of cell membrane of mucus membranes and skin by protecting it from harmful oxygen-free radicals.
* Furthermore, pines are one of gluten free tree nuts, and therefore, are a popular ingredient in the preparation of gluten-free food formulas. Such formula preparations can be a healthy alternative in people with wheat food allergy, and celiac disease.
* Pine nuts are an excellent source of B-complex group of vitamins such as thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, vitamin B-6 (pyridoxine) and folates. These vitamins work as co-factors for enzymes in cellular substrate metabolism inside the human body.
* Furthermore, pine nuts contain healthy amounts of essential minerals like manganese, potassium, calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc and selenium. At 8.802 mg per 100 g (about 383% of daily recommended intake), pines are one of the richest sources of manganese. Manganese is an all-important co-factor for antioxidant enzyme, superoxide dismutase. It is therefore, consumption of pines helps the body develop resistance against infectious agents and scavenge harmful oxygen-free radicals.
Pine nut oil has a delicate flavor with sweet aroma, and is being employed in many traditional medicinal applications. The main chemical components in pine oil are borneol, bornyl acetate, a and ß-phellandrene, a-pinene and ß-pinene. Its emollient property helps to keep skin well protected from dryness. It has also been employed in cooking, and as “carrier or base oil” in traditional medicines in aromatherapy, in pharmaceutical and cosmetic industry.
Selection and storage
In the wild, the seeds that drop down on the ground are generally gathered and processed. In the markets, one may find shelled as well as un-shelled pine nuts displayed for sale.
When you are buying whole un-shelled nuts, look for those feature bright brown color, compact, uniform in size, feel heavy in hand and should produce good metallic sound when poured down from a height. They should be free from cracks, mold, and spots and of rancid smell.
Shelled and processed kernels are also put for sale in air-tight plastic bags in the stores. Always try to buy fresh nuts from authentic sources.
Un-shelled nuts have long shelf life and can be stored for many months. Shelled kernels deteriorate soon if exposed to warm, humid conditions. Therefore, store shelled nuts in airtight jars and store inside the refrigerator.

Amazing Homemade Pesto basilpesto

• 2 cups Fresh Basil Leaves, packed
• 1/2 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
• 1/2 cup Vegan Parmesan Cheese
• 1/4 cup Pine Nuts or you can substitute 1/4 cup chopped Walnuts
• 2 Garlic Cloves, minced
• 1 tablespoon lemon juice
• 3 tablespoons nutritional yeast
• Optional: Salt and Pepper to taste


• Combine Basil leaves, Pine nuts, Garlic & Vegan Parmesan Cheese & nutritional yeast in food processor or blender
• Pulse or blend ingredients until combined.
• Slowly pour in Olive Oil while running food processor or blender on a low speed.
• Optional: Add in a pinch of pepper or salt to taste.
• Serve over pasta
• Makes 1 generous cup
• Extra Tip = Make extra & freeze: Put in small containers or zip-top bags. Thaw in refrigerator overnight before using. It is always a great way to use extra garden fresh Basil in this recipe & then you can eat it even in the cold winter months.

20150608_135154 20150608_142247Enjoy 🙂
© The Tipsy Green Goddess Ⓥ


Textured Vegetable Protein (TVP)

Textured Vegetable Protein (TVP) BOB014_Xl

Textured vegetable protein — also known as textured soy protein — is a healthy recipe substitute for browned ground beef since it contains no fat, saturated fat or cholesterol. Prepared from defatted soy flour, plain TVP contains no added flavors or colorings and can be stored in an air-tight container indefinitely. Dry TVP must be reconstituted in water before use: Plan on 1 cup of dry TVP yielding 2 cups of meat substitute after adding 1 cup of water.
Excellent Source of Lean Protein
A 1/4-cup serving of dry TVP contains around 11 grams of protein. This amount can supply a woman with 24 percent of her daily protein requirement and a man with 19 percent of his protein needs per day. Unlike most other plant-based sources of protein, TVP is a complete protein, meaning it contains all of the amino acids your body requires. Using TVP instead of red meat as a protein source in your diet may help lower your risk of diabetes, heart disease and cancer.

Rich in Dietary Fiber
Of the 57 calories in a 1/4-cup serving of TVP, 24 come from 6 grams of carbohydrates. Most of the carbohydrates — 4 grams — are supplied by dietary fiber. One TVP serving would fulfill nearly 12 percent of the daily fiber requirement for men between 19 and 30 years of age, 13 percent of the amount needed by men aged 31 to 50 and 14 percent of the recommendation for men over 51. Women up to age 30 can get 14 percent of their daily fiber allowance from a TVP serving, while older women — ages 31 to 50 — would fulfill 16 percent of their needs. Women over 51 would receive 18 percent of their fiber requirement from 1/4 cup of TVP.

Low in Sodium, High in Potassium
Plain TVP is extremely low in sodium: Each 1/4-cup dry serving contains just 3 milligrams, well under 1 percent of the recommended sodium limit even for people who are on a sodium-restricted diet. But TVP has a high concentration of minerals that most Americans need more of, including potassium. Some commercial brands of TVP can have as much as 540 milligrams of potassium in a 1/4-cup serving, or over 11 percent of the 4,700 milligrams recommended daily for healthy adults. TVP is also a good source of calcium, phosphorus and iron.
Packed with Folate
Your body needs vitamins like folate, or vitamin B-9, to support the health of your nervous system, to aid in red blood cell synthesis and to help you break down carbohydrates, fats and proteins for energy. Without enough, you may be more likely to develop heart disease or a neurological problem like depression. Adults should have 400 micrograms of folate each day. A typical serving of TVP contains 64 micrograms of folate, an amount that would supply 16 percent of an adult’s recommended daily allowance. textured_vegetable_protein_16x9

Terrific TVP Tacos
• 2 cups Textured vegetable protein (TVP)
• 2 cups water
• 2 Tbsp. soy sauce
• 2 Tbsp. olive or vegetable oil
• 1 package taco seasoning
• 1 red or yellow bell pepper, cut into strips
• 1/4 cup salsa
• Vegan sour cream (optional)
• Diced fresh avocado (optional)
• Fresh cilantro (optional)
• Fresh ½ lemon or lime (optional)
• 1/4 cup fresh chopped tomatoes (optional)
• A small handful fresh chopped lettuce (optional)
• 1/4 cup beans of your choice (optional)
• Your choice of flour tortillas or taco shells or fav leafy green wrap
In a large skillet, heat the water over medium heat, & add the TVP, stirring well. Allow the (TVP) to reconstitute for 2-3 minutes.
Add oil & soy sauce, then peppers & taco seasoning, stirring well. Allow to cook for another 3-5 minutes, stirring frequently. Mix in salsa & remove from heat.
Serve wrapped in a flour tortilla or hard taco shells or fav leafy green wrap. I like to eat this as is, but you could also add tomatoes, lettuce, beans, cilantro, avocado, squeeze fresh lemon or lime & vegan sour cream to your tacos. tacosEnjoy 🙂

© The Tipsy Green Goddess Ⓥ

Soy Gold

Tofu is like the fruitcake of the protein world – people will use every excuse not to eat it. Next time you pass over it in the supermarket, think twice. Those little nuggets of soy gold are packed with many nutrients that will do wonders for you and your body.
What is Tofu?
Tofu is a curd made from the milk of pressed soybeans. It has a gelatinous texture and doesn’t really have a flavor of its own. However, it will take on the flavor of anything you cook it with. There are many different varieties of tofu, but there are three main types usually found in grocery stores: firm, soft and silken.
• Firm tofu has a solid texture and tends to be higher in fat. This tofu is good for grilling or baking.
• Soft tofu has a softer texture than firm tofu and tends to be lower in fat. This type of tofu is good as a substitute for eggs or creamy cheeses like ricotta or cottage cheese.
• Silken tofu has a creamier texture than soft tofu and can be used to thicken up a smoothie or soup, or as a substitute for mayonnaise. In Japanese culture, silken tofu is typically eaten plain or with a splash of soy sauce.
No matter what type of tofu you choose, you’ll still reap the nutritional benefits of this amazing food.

Soy, which tofu is made from, is considered to be a complete food since it contains all eight essential amino acids. Of course, tofu is packed with protein, which is why vegetarians & vegans use it as a meat substitute. In fact, one 4-ounce block of tofu is filled with 9.16 grams of protein, which is more than 18 percent of the Daily Value. Here are some of tofu’s other nutrients:
• Iron, copper and manganese: This nutrient trifecta helps to absorb one another in the body, and tofu is a great source for all three. Four ounces of tofu provides about a third of the Daily Value of iron and manganese, and about 11 percent of the Daily Value of copper.
• Calcium: Calcium sulfate is used as a coagulant in tofu, which is essentially made from soy milk. Four ounces of tofu contains about 10 percent of the Daily Value.
• Omega 3: Fish is the most common source of these fatty acids, but for those who are allergic to fish or just don’t prefer it, tofu is a great replacement source for Omega 3.Four ounces of tofu contains more than 14 percent of the Daily Value.
• Selenium: Certain types of fish and nuts are good sources of selenium, but so is tofu; four ounces of it contains more than 14 percent of the Daily Value.

soy tofu
Disease Protector
So what do all of these nutrients do for you? Here are some of the ways that tofu can benefit your health:
• Iron and copper are essential for hemoglobin synthesis, which produces energy. Copper and manganese are responsible for an enzyme that destroys free radicals, and copper itself can help reduce the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis.
• Calcium is, of course, the vitamin that keeps your bones strong. It can help reduce the bone loss in those with rheumatoid arthritis.
• Omega 3 fatty acids are good for your heart and can help prevent blood clots. They also can prevent cholesterol from clogging your arteries.
• Selenium is a powerful protector against free radicals. It works with iodine to help regulate the thyroid and has been shown to repair DNA, making it a cancer-fighter as well.
Soy also contains compounds called isoflavones that have many beneficial properties as well.
• Isoflavones can mimic estrogen and are beneficial to women during menopause. The isoflavones can reduce some of the symptoms of menopause, such as hot flashes.
• Isoflavones have also been associated with lowering the risk of breast and prostate cancer.
• Lower levels of LDL, the bad cholesterol, and higher levels of HDL, the good cholesterol, have been attributed to isoflavones.

Negative Effects of Soy
Of course, too much of anything is never good for you, and that includes tofu. Despite its many health benefits, consuming too much tofu, or any soy product, can have some negative effects. Those same isoflavones that can lower LDL and the risk of some cancers can also do some harm if eaten in excess.
• Because isoflavones mimic estrogen, they can interfere with the thyroid and cause it to malfunction.
• Studies have shown that too much soy can also result in reproductive issues in males and females and could also cause early puberty.
• Although soy in small doses can reduce the risk of breast cancer, some studies suggest that eating too much of it could actually trigger the development of breast cancer.
However, it’s important to keep in mind that these effects would only occur after eating large amounts of soy on a regular basis. Eating tofu, or any other soy product, in moderation is key and incorporating this superfood into your diet can have amazing benefits for your health.

© The Tipsy Green Goddess Ⓥ

Tempting Tempeh

What is Tempeh?
Tempeh is a soy food made by controlled fermentation of cooked soybeans with a Rhizopus molds (=tempeh starter). This fermentation binds the soybeans into a compact white cake. Tempeh has been a favorite food and staple source of protein in Indonesia for several hundred years. But it is now rapidly becoming popular all over the world as people look for ways to increase their intake of soy, known for its health benefits. They discover tempeh’s versatility and delicious taste. Especially vegetarians and vegans find the structure and protein content interesting. Tempeh has a firm texture and a nutty mushroom flavor. It is very versatile and can be used in recipes in different ways. Normally tempeh is sliced or cut in cubes and fried until the surface is crisp and golden brown. You can also grate it like cheese. Tempeh can be used as ingredient in soups, spreads, salads and sandwiches. Tempeh is now commonly available in many supermarkets as well as in Asian markets and health food stores.
Tempeh is healthy!
Tempeh is very nutritive and contains many health promoting phytochemicals such as isoflavones and saponins. Tempeh fermentation produces natural antibiotic agents but leaves the desirable soy isoflavones and most of the saponins intact. Tempeh is a complete protein food that contains all the essential amino acids. Isoflavones have many health benefits: they strengthen our bones, help to ease menopausal symptoms, reduce risk of coronary heart disease and some cancers. Tempeh has all the fiber of the soybeans and gains some digestive benefits from the enzymes formed during the fermentation process.

Using tempeh in your recipes
Fresh tempeh has a nice mushroom and nutty flavor, but in recipes it will readily absorbs flavors of other ingredients. Often, tempeh is marinated before cooking to give it a stronger and savory taste. Tempeh can be used in typical Indonesian recipes, but just as well in Western style cooking. For example, you can substitute all or part of meat in your favorite recipe with tempeh.
Cooking methods
In Indonesian tempeh is deep-fried in vegetable oil until golden brown and crispy. But you can use in other ways: boiling, steaming, baking, microwaving, stir-frying or grilling.
Cutting tempeh
Tempeh is very practical in that you can cut it different ways: slices, cubes or crumbles. You can cut tempeh in thick or very thin slices. The thinner the slices, the easier they can be deep-fried into crispy tempeh, but the more oil they will absorb. Tempeh can be cut in cubes of any size you like and then be deep-fried, stir-fried or boiled. Because of its firm texture it is very easy to grate tempeh in a food processor or a cheese grater. When you use a food processor the texture of the tempeh will resemble that of ground meat. Grated tempeh is easy way to introduce soy nutrients to people who enjoy meat. When you use half tempeh and half ground meat for burgers and sauces you will keep the meaty flavor but gain the health benefits of soy.

Marinating tempeh
A simple marinade is water mixed with soy sauce, lemon juice, ground pepper, coriander and crushed garlic. You can add other ingredients such as vinegar, rice wine, pineapple juice, barbeque sauce, mustard, tamarind, lemongrass, ginger and lemon leave. Cut the tempeh into cubes or slices and marinate for 1 to 4 hours for absorption of flavors.
How do I know that my tempeh is good?
In fresh tempeh the soybeans should be bound together into a tight cakes with no mold growing other than the white tempeh culture. Small black spots may occasionally appear. These spots do not necessarily indicate spoilage, but are part of the tempeh culture’s life cycle.
The texture should not be slimy and the aroma should be mushroom-like (or yeast-like). A every slight smell of ammonia is normal. This smell will increase if you incubate too long, indicating that the proteins have been broken down too much.
Molds can produce toxins! How safe is tempeh?
The molds (Rhizopus) used for the production of tempeh are eatable and don’t produce any known toxins. There have been no reports of serious illness after eating of tempeh.
What are the health benefits of tempeh?
The health benefits of tempeh are numerous. As opposed to many other soy foods tempeh is made from whole soybeans, and possesses all the health benefits of soybeans. Also the tempeh fermentation changes the properties of the soybeans.
High fiber content
One serving of tempeh contains more fiber than most people consume in one day. Fiber is essential for a healthy digestive tract as well as preventing many chronic diseases.
Tempeh is easy to digest
Tempeh is a great choice for people who have difficulty digesting plant-based high-protein foods like beans and legumes or soy foods such as tofu. The process of fermentation makes the soybeans softer, since enzymes produced by the mold predigests a large portion of the basic nutrients. The Rhizopus moulds produce an enzyme phytase which breaks down phytates, thereby increasing the absorption of minerals such as zinc, iron and calcium. The fermentation process greatly reduces the oligosaccharides that make beans hard to digest for some people. Studies have shown tempeh to be essentially non-flatulent and producing no more gas than non-legume food.
Ideal for people on low sodium diets
Unlike other fermented soy products, like miso which is very salty, tempeh is extremely low in sodium.
Contains natural antibiotics
Rhizopus moulds produce natural, heat-stable antibiotic agents against some disease-causing organisms. Indonesians who eat tempeh as a regular part of their diet recognize it as a medicine for dysentery and rarely fall victim to the intestinal diseases to which they are constantly exposed.


BBQ Tempeh Sloppy Joes
2 8 oz. packages tempeh
1 cup BBQ sauce
1 small onion
Hamburger buns, lettuce leaf or cooked rice
Add tempeh whole to pan. Add BBQ sauce & let marinate for at least 15 minutes, more if you have time.
Meanwhile, dice onion, then add to pan with tempeh.
Mix well. Set pan on side grill or grill if you have no side burner on grill. Cook at med/low heat. Bring to simmer, reduce heat, & lightly simmer for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Pile onto hamburger buns, lettuce leaf or cooked rice & enjoy!

© The Tipsy Green Goddess Ⓥ

Earth Balance Betrays Consumers With False Non-GMO and Organic Claims

Was quite shocked to read this article by Natasha Longo. What are your thoughts?
April 23, 2013 by NATASHA LONGO

Earth Balance Betrays Consumers With False Non-GMO and Organic Claims

Earth Balance is a company that claims to “take the health of our planet just as seriously as we take the wellness of our customers.” They also assert this position with a Non-GMO commitment believing in “environmental protection and agricultural methods that work in harmony with nature.” When we investigated Earth Balance, we found these statements to be purely superficial marketing tactics designed to deceive consumers into purchasing foods manufactured with ingredients which completely contradict their corporate philosophy statements.

Many Kashi lovers were in disbelief after my report revealing the deceptive claims made by their breakfast products. As a Kellogg company, Kashi stays true their corporate masters and riddles their products with genetically modified (GM) and pesticide loaded ingredients.

The reason more organic and natural brands are being exposed is twofold: First, many of them are being bought out by large multi-national corporate food giants who then adopt their own protocols, including diminished standards of quality and deceptive policy practices considered normal across the industry; and second, agricultural and labeling practices have become so lax and unregulated by the USDA and other organic certification agencies, that they are practically redundant in terms of any protection to the consumer.

The largest food giants have one goal–profit. They couldn’t care less about the end consumer, their safety or the growing needs of a family, especially if that involves maintaining integrity through health conscious food choices. That’s why they produce the cheapest quality food on Earth with little nutritional value and maximum profit potential.

Health conscious consumers became wise to their game long ago. So the food giants had to evolve to continue to increase profits and capture these segments of the population they had lost. As small organic brands proliferated, they were bought out by the big boys who had the money, resources and branding power to reformulate high quality products into inferior substandard duplicates. This has happened to hundreds of organic brands and so the cycle continues.

There are now hundreds of trendy brands promoting a plant-based diet and earth-friendly lifestyle through their online portals and social communities. They attract raw foodies, vegans, vegetarians and just about anybody else who thrives on an alternative source to our troubled conventional food supply. These trendy umbrella affiliates have become very creative in how they reach out to the health conscious communities.

Earth Balance is just one of them.

Why You Should Never Buy Earth Balance Products

Earth Balance is a division of GFA Brands, Inc., an operating affiliate and subsidiary of Smart Balance. So who are they?

Smart Balance buttery spreads were first introduced in 1995 by GFA Brands. The company was previously known as Boulder Specialty Brands, Inc., and had its initial public offering in 2005. They changed their name to Smart Balance, Inc. in May 2007, when they acquired GFA Brands, Inc., a privately held company, which owned the Smart Balance and Earth Balance brands.

Their products can be found in almost every mainstream supermarket chain in the U.S. and Canada, as well as many larger format stores. Earth Balance products are found primarily in natural food as well as a growing number of regular supermarkets.

Smart Balance is already a fairly big player in their market niche. Their net sales are well over 300 million per year with well established profits and operating incomes that would impress any shareholder. But they didn’t get there by using the best ingredients and staying true to the people that bought into their market. They got there by using artful persuasion and malicious practices which deceive people into purchasing a message about food rather than a food that epitomizes the message.

Before I dive further into the details of Earth Balance products, I would like to categorically state that even before investigating this company, I never ate or purchased any of their products. I’ve always considered their product line junk food. In my opinion, healthy food does not contain processed GMO oils and Soy and it never will. These are two of the ingredients commonly used in many Earth Balance food products. Neither are a health food and both can cause serious health problems in the long-term.


For a brief analysis on the health dangers of soy, please review #2 on my recent article, 7 Foods To Stop Consuming Today.

If you still trust ANYTHING about soy, you likely have not completed sufficient research to make a fully informed decision. If you were to carefully review the thousands of studies published on soy, you would likely reach the same conclusions–the risks of consuming unfermented soy products FAR outweigh any possible benefits.

Soy is very problematic crop. Non-organic sources of soy in many agricultural practices are being passed off as organic. In 2011, the USDA uncovered a plot to import fraudulent organic certificates produced by an uncertified supplier in China. The Chinese firm used the counterfeit certificate to represent non-organic crops, including soybeans, millet and buckwheat, as certified organic.

Any ingredient listed as soybean or soy on any product ingredient list has a 93% chance of being GMO if it is not listed as organic.

These types of things are happening every year and only a fraction are being discovered. Even domestically sourced organic soybean crops are now being investigated for having GMO origins. You cannot trust the soy conglomerates. The industry has dumped millions into persuading people that soy is a health food when it’s really a junk food, especially modern soy in all its processing. There are very few types of soy that are healthy for the body and all go through a very slow stringent fermentation processes, none of which you will ever obtain in a processed food spread or milk.

The bottom line when it comes to soy is that we are all participating in what Daniel M. Sheehan, former senior toxicologist with the FDA’s National Center for Toxicological Research, has called a “large, uncontrolled and basically unmonitored human experiment.”

Canola (TOXIC)

After the public health scare (or fear mongering) in the 1970s over animal fats, sales of vegetable oils of all types increased. It was the established wisdom that those oils high in polyunsaturated fatty acids were especially beneficial. The obsession with polyunsaturated versus saturated fats led researchers and nutritionists to overlook some of the other features of vegetable oils that we now know are crucial to health, including:

  • Susceptibility to rancidity;
  • Ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 fatty acids and its relevance in inflammatory diseases and immune system function;
  • Possible presence of irritating or toxic compounds in particular plant oils.

Although Chinese and Indian peoples have long used rapeseed oil in cooking, it was not refined and processed to the extent of modern commercial methods, and it was never considered to be a high quality oil for human consumption.

Canola oil contains a long-chain fatty acid called erucic acid, which is especially irritating to mucous membranes; canola oil consumption has been correlated with development of fibrotic lesions of the heart, CNS degenerative disorders, lung cancer, and prostate cancer, anemia, and constipation.

The long-chain fatty acids found in canola have been found to destroy the sphingomyelin surrounding nerve cells in the brain, in some cases leading to a degenerative brain condition remarkably similar to mad-cow disease (bovine spongiform encephalopathy); in advanced cases the brain tissue develops a Swiss-cheese-like appearance, full of holes. Illnesses and conditions that have been associated with canola oil consumption include loss of vision (retinal capillaries are very sensitive and easily damaged), and a wide range of neurological disorders.

Today, even those who are moderately educated about nutrition understand that Canola (also known as rapeseed) is not a health food and it could not possibly ever be classified as organic due to its breeding and origin.

The toxic properties of the rape plant are cyanide-containing compounds called isothiocyanates. Wild animals will not eat the plant and many farmers report that their animals will not eat feed contaminated with canola.

In various studies, experimental rats fed canola oil developed fatty degeneration of the heart, kidney, adrenals, and thyroid gland. On withdrawing the canola oil from their diets, the deposits dissolved but scar tissue remained on all vital organs.

Genetically modified Canola was derived in the 70s from cross-breeding of multiple lines of the rape plant to produce a much lower percentage of erucic acid, a known food borne toxin. Thus, Canola is GMO by design and organic canola is a misnomer. It’s another industry tactic to make consumers believe something is organic in nature which has never been by origin.

In the last 20 years we have seen a dramatic increase in muscular disorders such as multiple sclerosis and cerebral palsy. Soy and Canola oils are players in the outbreak of these disease conditions. So are the organophosphates–insecticides such as malthion– used in food production in the name of efficiency.

Canola contains fats that experts say should not be exposed to heat, yet it is usually exposed to high temperatures, and then deodorized and bleached. It has been shown to deplete vitamin E levels in mammals. The plant itself (rapeseed) is an insect repellent and used in industrial manufacturing. Soybean oil has been linked to breast cancer and its high levels of Omega-6s linked to inflammatory diseases and its omega-3s converted into the undesirable trans form. Even “lightly refined” and “expeller pressed oils can be exposed to deodorizing, which may raise the oil temperature to a sizzling 450 deg F. When metabolized in the body, it produces the latex-like substance that causes the agglutination of red blood cells.

GMO Sugar Beets (TOXIC)

In July 2012 genetically modified sugar beets got a sweet pass from the USDA. The agency announced that the crop posed no pest risk and would therefore be deregulated, much to the disappointment of groups like the Center for Food Safety, Organic Seed Alliance, High Mowing Organic Seeds and the Sierra Club, that challenged the agency in a lawsuit stretching back to 2008, on the premise that not enough research had been done over the environmental impacts of the genetically engineered crop.

Nearly 95 percent of the U.S. sugar beet production is grown from genetically modified seeds — a swift change from 2005 when they were first approved for planting. More than half of U.S. domestic sugar production comes from sugar beets, the remainder comes from sugar cane.

At one point there was a nationwide ban imposed on GMO sugar beets and it was overturned the next business day. It is the jurisdiction of the US Department of Agriculture to determine whether plants are environmentally safe; this case is about whether the plants can cross pollinate (by wind, insects, etc) and contaminate other plants. However, the USDA never properly assigns itself a responsible enough position to investigate this task because it would cost Monsanto billions of dollars and we wouldn’t want that.

Palm Fruit Oil (BAN)

Palm Fruit oil is taken from the fruit of the oil palm tree. It comes from the same part of the palm tree as regular palm oil.

Indonesia has achieved its goal of becoming one of the two largest palm-oil producers and exporters in the world. But at what cost?

At least half of the world’s wild orangutans have disappeared in the last 20 years; biologically viable populations of orangutans have been radically reduced in size and number; and 80 percent of the orangutan habitat has either been depopulated or totally destroyed. The trend shows no sign of abating: government maps of future planned land use show more of the same, on an increasing scale.

In Malaysia, peat swamp forests are being obliterated, and the disappearing forests endangering the habitat of the “pygmy elephant — the smallest elephant on Earth — the clouded leopard, the long-nosed tapir and many rare birds.”

As word spreads about the devastation that palm oil cultivation can cause, people are beginning to take notice and companies are beginning to make changes. Sustainable palm oil is in its infancy, and according to Worldwatch Institute, palm oil sustainability criteria remain controversial.

Palm Fruit Oil is simply another ingredient that needs to be banned from our food supply. We don’t need it if it’s not sustainable in the health of our ecosystems or wildlife.

Palm Oil Now More Widely Produced Than Soybean Oil – Here’s Why You Need To Get This Oil Out Of Your Diet

Agave Syrup (TOXIC)

Fully chemically processed sap from the agave plant is known as hydrolyzed high fructose inulin syrup. It needs to be hydrolyzed so that the complex fructosans are “broken down” into fructose units or it won’t be sweet!

According to Dr. Ingrid Kohlstadt, a fellow of the American College of Nutrition and an associate faculty member at Johns Hopkins School of Public Health:

“[Agave is] almost all fructose, highly processed sugar with great marketing.”

Depending upon where the agave comes from and the amount of heat used to process it, your agave syrup can be anywhere from 55 percent to 90 percent fructose, whereas sugar and honey are closer to 50% fructose and 50% glucose. Fructose is much sweeter than glucose, and this chemical makeup also explains why the glycemic index is lower (it only takes glucose into account).

This range of fructose content hardly makes agave syrup a logical choice if you’re hoping to avoid the high levels of fructose in HFCS (high fructose corn syrup).

Since most agave syrup has such a high percentage of fructose, your blood sugar will likely spike just as it would if you were consuming regular sugar or HFCS, and you would also run the risk of raising your triglyceride levels. It’s also important to understand that whereas the glucose in other sugars are converted to blood glucose, fructose is a relatively unregulated source of fuel that your liver converts to fat and cholesterol.

A significant danger here is that fructose does not stimulate your insulin secretion, nor enhance leptin production, which is thought to be involved in appetite regulation.

Fructose may also interfere with your body’s ability to metabolize copper. This can result in depletion of collagen and elastin, which are vital connective tissues. A copper deficiency can also result in anemia, fragile bones, defects in your arteries, infertility, high cholesterol and heart disease, and uncontrolled blood sugar levels.

Additionally, fructose consumption has been shown to significantly increase uric acid. Elevated levels of uric acid are markers for heart disease. It has also been shown to increase blood lactic acid, especially in diabetics. Elevations in lactic acid can result in metabolic acidosis.

Isolated fructose has no enzymes, vitamins or minerals and can rob your body of these nutrients in order to assimilate itself. Hence, consumption of fructose can also lead to loss of vital minerals like calcium, iron, magnesium, and zinc.

Exposing Earth Balance Products

*** SPREADS ***

Toxic Ingredients = GMO Canola, GMO Soybean, Natural Flavor (GMO corn derived), Lactic Acid (from GMO Sugar Beets)
Eco Destructive Ingredients = Palm Fruit Oil

Olive Oil:
Toxic Ingredients = GMO Canola, GMO Soybean, Natural Flavor (GMO corn derived), Lactic Acid (from GMO Sugar Beets)
Eco Destructive Ingredients = Palm Fruit Oil

Soy Free:
Toxic Ingredients = GMO Canola, Natural Flavor (GMO corn derived), Lactic Acid (from GMO Sugar Beets)
Eco Destructive Ingredients = Palm Fruit Oil

Soy Garden:
Toxic Ingredients = GMO Soybean, GMO crushed Soybeans, Natural Flavor (GMO corn derived), Lactic Acid (from GMO Sugar Beets)
Eco Destructive Ingredients = Palm Fruit Oil

Organic Whipped:
Toxic Ingredients = GMO Canola, Lactic Acid (from GMO Sugar Beets)
Eco Destructive Ingredients = Palm Fruit Oil

*** SOY MILK ***

Soy (Toxic):
Soy in all of Earth Balance’s Soymilk does not follow the slow stringent fermentation process necessary to make soy non-toxic. Consequently the entire Soymilk product line is toxic by their primary ingredient.

Carrageenan (Toxic):
The entire Soymilk line also contains Carrageenan, which acts as an emulsifer and stabilizer. All Carrageenan is typically extracted using powerful alkaline solvents. Even at low doses, it has been found to destroy human cells and is linked to various human cancers and digestive disorders. Carrageenan has also been found to impair and depress cell-mediated immunity and cause the proliferation of tumour growth. The mechanism responsible for carrageenan-induced immune suppression is believed to be its selective degenerative effect on white blood cells.


All Dressings contain GMO Canola


Toxic Ingredients = GMO Canola

Vegan Butter Sticks:
Toxic Ingredients = GMO Canola, GMO Soybean, Natural Flavor (GMO corn derived), Lactic Acid (from GMO Sugar Beets)


All Nut Butters contain:
Toxic Ingredients = Agave Syrup
Eco Destructive Ingredients = Palm Fruit Oil


Organic Coconut:
Toxic Ingredients = GMO Canola Oil, Lactic Acid (from GMO Sugar Beets)
Eco Destructive Ingredients = Palm Fruit Oil

Organic Sweet Cinnamon:
Toxic Ingredients = Crushed Soybeans, Soybean Oil, Soy Lecithin
Eco Destructive Ingredients = Palm Fruit Oil

Organic Sweet Cinnamon:
Toxic Ingredients = Crushed Soybeans, Soybean Oil, Soy Lecithin
Eco Destructive Ingredients = Palm Fruit Oil

After reviewing all of the above, is this a company that takes the health of our planet just as serious as they do health and wellness? They do not protect the environment or source ingredients from agricultural methods that work in harmony with nature. They do not uphold their Non-GMO commitment and they continue to use toxic emulsifiers and sweeteners.

Earth Balance should be ashamed of their misrepresentation and I urge you to help educate others by sharing this information with as many health conscious consumers as possible. The only way we will stimulate a call for action and bring a greater sense of integrity to the health food industry is by exposing companies like Smart Balance and their subsidiary Earth Balance.

Natasha Longo has a master’s degree in nutrition and is a certified fitness and nutritional counselor. She has consulted on public health policy and procurement in Canada, Australia, Spain, Ireland, England and Germany.


Reference Sources 116

Hawaiian Grilled Tofu & Vegetable Kabobs

2 packages of extra firm tofu, cut into large chunks

Vegetables/Fruit you’ll need:
1/2 pineapple, cut into chunks

2 medium corn on cob, cut into 4 inch chunks

1/2 lb brussel sprouts

1 medium zucchini, sliced into ⅓” rings

2 medium yellow squash, sliced into ⅓” rings

4 medium bell peppers , (1 red, 1 orange, 1 green & 1 yellow) cut into 1″ pieces

1 large red onion, sliced & separated into 1″ pieces

1 lb small-ish mushrooms, rinsed & dried on paper towels

10 large wood skewers (soaked at least 30 minutes in water).

Marinade Ingredients:
4 Tbsp olive oil
4 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
3 garlic cloves
¼ tsp ground cumin
1 tsp sweet paprika
⅛ tsp orange chipolte
½ tsp ground black pepper
4 sprigs fresh thyme
½ bunch fresh parsley
½ bunch fresh cilantro

How to Make the Marinade:
Combine all the marinade ingredients in a food processor & process until smooth.
Rinse, dry and slice all of your veggies, then transfer them to a large bowl or 1 gallon zip-loc bag.
Pour marinade over your veggies & toss to combine & coat veggies evenly with marinade. Refrigerate for 4 hours to marinate. 20150513_101515

Assembling the Skewers: 20150513_133357
Remove tofu from the marinade & thread onto the wooden skewers. Reserve the marinade.
Thread veggies & pineapple & thread onto skewers in any order you like with the tofu.
Cook skewers on the preheated grill, (medium/low heat)occasionally turning, brush marinade over veggies, tofu & pineapple. Grill until the vegetables are tender & the tofu has nice golden brown grill marks & color. 20150513_134002 20150513_135258
Heat the reserved marinade & drizzle over tofu & vegetables.
Serve over noodles, rice or a cold salad. Enjoy 🙂
© The Tipsy Green Goddess

Homemade Tortilla Chips & Seasoned Croutons


Homemade Tortilla Chips
Making your own tortilla chips is super easy. You just cut corn tortillas into “chip like” shapes. Have fun with it, use cookie cutters. Experiment with seasonings you love, your taste buds will thank you.

For the Chips
8 Vegan wheat or corn tortillas
1 Tbsp. olive oil
Seasoning of choice

Method 20150513_084332
Cut the tortillas into chip sized triangles. Arrange on a baking sheet. Brush a small amount of oil onto each chip with a pastry brush. Season the chips with as much seasoning mix you would prefer. Bake them in the oven at 350F for 10 minutes. If needed add additional 5 minutes but STAY CLOSE to the oven & check on them frequently. They can go from underdone to too done very quickly. 20150513_090122 Enjoy 🙂

Homemade Seasoned Croutons Recipe silverhillsbread

• 8 slices of your favorite Vegan bread (stale or not)
• 1/4 cup olive oil, or melted Vegan butter
• 1-2 teaspoons seasonings
~ For garlic croutons, try 1/2 teaspoon garlic salt or 1 teaspoon garlic & 1/8 teaspoon salt, plus 1 teaspoon dried parsley
~ For Italian style, try a pinch of salt with dried oregano or basil

~ There are so many options of seasonings to create your own unique blend.
Directions 20150513_101506
Preheat oven to 300F. Slice & cube your bread, it is your choice if you leave crust on or cut it off. I sliced, stacked, & then sliced again, making cubes roughly 1 inch by 1 inch by 1/2 inch. They will shrink up a little as they are tossed in the oil.
Mix together Oil & seasonings in a large bowl, toss bread cubes to coat. Spread the seasoned croutons on a baking sheet & place in the oven. Bake 10 minutes, stir & add additional 5 minutes if needed or until crisp completely through. Taste testing recommended – just don’t burn your tongue! Remove from oven and allow to cool completely. 20150513_101126

Storing tip

Store in a tightly sealed container in a cool dry location for up to a week. For longer storage, keep in the freezer. (The oil will go rancid over time if left out, so eating fresh is best.) You can also crush these & use them in recipes that call for seasoned bread crumbs. Enjoy 🙂 20150513_105009
© The Tipsy Green Goddess