Chocolate Chip Lactation Cookies

Lactation Cookies by Laura Lea Bryant, Chef.

Cookies4Hi friends! Holistic Chef Laura Lea Bryant comin’ atcha, but you can also think of me as MindBodyBespoke’s biggest fan! Frances is one of my dearest friends in the world, and she radiates beauty, positive energy and wisdom in everything she does. You are lucky to have made your way to her website! Today, I’m honored to share a recipe that I created with one of the MindBodyBespoke focuses in mind, helping pregnant and new mothers navigate their changing bodies and to nourish their babies, naturally.

By no means am I an expert in this field, but I know that breastfeeding and producing milk is an epic challenge for many new mamas. A healthy and steady milk supply has countless benefits for mother and child. For a baby, quality breastmilk is an irreplaceable source of nutrients, immune system building/disease prevention and it helps with digestion. For mamas, breastfeeding has been showing to diminish postpartum depression, aid in weight loss, reduce risk of breast cancer and osteoporosis and of course, allow for invaluable bonding time.

Nutrition plays a critical role in lactation and proper breastfeeding. One ingredient in particular, Brewer’s Yeast, has been showing to increase milk supply and help with post-baby blues. Brewer’s Yeast is a nutrient-rich fungus that is generally tolerated well by babies. In this recipe, Brewer’s Yeast combines with flax meal and oats, two others ingredients shown to help with lactation. The result? These amazingly delicious cookies! Don’t be fooled by the word “cookie”—these little nuggets of nutrition are healthy enough to eat for breakfast or a snack. For busy moms, grab-and-go food items are clutch, and a little chocolate never hurt! You might notice a slightly malty taste from the yeast, and I personally love it. When buying ingredients for these cookies (and always), look for the freshest and best quality you can find. It makes a difference!

Cookies2

Make these cookies for yourself or someone you love who is a new mama, and hopefully they will help physically and emotionally with all of the change that takes place when beautiful new life enters the picture.

Cookies3

Lactation Cookies       Yield: Approximately 16 cookies

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup unsalted grassfed butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup unsalted unsweetened peanut butter
  • 1 tablespoon flax meal
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup spelt flour
  • 3/4 cups oats
  • 2 tbsp Brewers yeast
  • 1/4 tsp ground sea salt
  • 1/3 cup chocolate chips

Procedure:
Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Cream together butter, sugar and peanut butter until smooth. Add chia, egg and vanilla and stir to combine.

In a separate bowl, combine spelt flour, oats, yeast and sea salt. Add wet ingredients to dry and stir to incorporate. Stir in chocolate chips.

Scoop dough into 1 1/2 inch balls into baking sheet, leaving 2 inches between.

Bake cookies for 18 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean, let cool for 5 minutes before eating.

LLBLaura Lea is a Certified Holistic Chef in Nashville, TN with a recipe development and teaching business called Laura Lea Balanced. She focuses on simple, budget and family-friendly recipes that are healthier versions of classic favorites. You can visit her website at llbalanced.com !

Flip the switch on workout boredom

Working out, especially if you are just getting started,  can be overwhelming and certainly can be viewed as boring. The repetitive nature of getting to the gym and getting on the treadmill or elliptical may not be enough to excite you. workout1That makes total sense to me (even though I sometimes do those things during the week as “maintenance”). On these machines, you’re literally moving forward but not going anywhere….and I’m starting to think that’s sending a subliminal message to all of us! Work as hard as you can but not move forward? Are YOU doing this several times a week with no attachment or connection to what you’re doing? What is your workout mindset?

If you’re hoping to spice up your workouts this spring season and want to avoid the bore of the same old thing, then let’s switch it up! Flip the switch on your workout mindset by varying your physical activities. You’re body can physically respond well to this– the unexpected. Knowing that you’re going to the gym for the same old routine can make you become disconnected to what it is you are doing. You’re body may be working but where is your mind? Counting down the minutes until it’s all over? (We’ve all been there!)

If you are in this situation then try taking a difference approach to your weekly workouts. The best way to do this is to explore new and different types of exercise that you haven’t thought to try before, maybe something that scares you a bit. Many years ago I was intimidated by indoor cycling. workout3A colleague and friend from work took me for my first class and I was immediately hooked! I had no idea that this transformative experience would quickly become a new addition to my workout arsenal. So sprinkle in one or two of these new activities into your week. Perhaps you’ve always wanted to try yoga, spinning, pilates, or running but have held back for whatever reason. Just try it! You have nothing to lose and so much to gain! Try new classes that are offered at your gym or in your city that you’ve overlooked before. If you don’t feel comfortable trying a new class alone, recruit a buddy! Having a partner in crime is definitely the way to go and will take some of the anxiety out of being the newbie in class. My point is this, working out can be boring– if you LET IT. Take control of the situation. Become an explorer with an open-minded approach. Try new classes, new workouts, and new regimens. Try outdoor activities. No one ever gets bored or lethargic in fresh air and sunshine! Also, be open to flexibility — if you can’t get to your normal class, try something else. I learned this after having my son. Prior to being pregnant I had a routine and my go-to classes. But after giving birth I quickly realized I had to get workouts in when I could (often at home in my living room via youtube ). I had to become more flexible with scheduling and allow for variety. I found that I began to value my exercise time even more because it was so precious (time alone and time for me). Some days I can get to a class and sometimes a whole week (or more!) will go by and I have to improvise.

Here’s my final thought for you– working out is a luxury. Yep. That may sound a little crazy to some of you but think about it. It’s time alone, time for you, time for self-improvment. We mustn’t allow ourselves to look at it as drag and succumb to the boring same old — same old.workout2 Instead, look at it as an opportunity to enrich your health and allow yourself to explore all the many wonderful and exciting things that you can do with your body and your mind. Once you wrap your head around this concept, working out will not be boring, it will become a treat, a necessary part of your life that you actually look forward to.  Can you give this mindset a try?

Please share your workout motivation stories and comments! How do you avoid workout boredom?

workout4