Saturday, March 24, 2012

The Writing Gourmet Seeks Health Nut Foodie Followers

By Cal Orey, The Writing Gourmet
A Quick Note: Follow this blog and I'll dish out fresh ways to help you stay healthy--lose unwanted pounds, body fat, get more energy, and more...Cal Orey is a Northern California-based accomplished author and journalist specializing in topics such as health, nutrition, science, and pets. She holds two degrees in English (Creative Writing) from SFSU. Her books include the popular Healing Powers book series published by Kensington, and translated in 20 languages. The Healing Powers of Vinegar, Olive Oil, Chocolate, Honey, and Coffee attracts a mainstream audience, thanks to her casual writing style via heartfelt storytelling. Orey's reader-friendly prose is lively and created in a down-to-earth first-person narrative. 
The veteran health writer has shared her knowledge on Coast to Coast AM Radio, KSFO, The Mancow Show,, NewsMax, NY Daily News,, Tom Roten Show, health and fitness, AOL My Daily, Health, The Writer, and Woman's World. Her website is and blog The Writing Gourmet.

The Healing Powers of Chocolate

"The powerful polyphenols in dark chocolate are a 21st century health food--your Rx for longevity!" -- Karlis Ullis, M.D., Medical Director of the Sports Medicine and Anti-Aging Medical Group, Santa Monica, CA

The Healing Powers of Honey

"The most effective and versatile superfoods of all time! This book will help you stay healthy...for good!" -- Ann Louise Gittleman, Ph.D.

The Healing Powers of Coffee

"A cup or two of Joe every day is a good way to boost mood, energy and overall health." -- Julian Whitaker, M.D., founder of the Whitaker Wellness Institute

The Healing Powers of Vinegar

"An intriguing look into the vinegar world. This is a practical, health-oriented book that everyone who wants to stay healthy and live longer should read." -- Patricia Bragg, author of Apple Cider Vinegar and daughter of Paul C. Bragg

Drop 6 Lbs. in Two Days with Honey, Olive Oil & Vinegar

 By Cal Orey, The Writing Gourmet
Fall is  in the air. I can feel it. Rather than sing the blues (especially if you're carrying unwanted vacation weight) dump the pounds ASAP! Couples seem to be blossoming like olives or buzzing like honey bees everywhere you look, right?
So, whether you're enjoying the season of renewal in the U.S. or getting ready to travel somewhere new and exciting like Europe or a Fall Break hot spot, you want a leaner, fit and fab beach and pool body. Here is a perfect tried-and-true quickie jump-start diet plan that'll help you drop six pounds or more (depending upon your weight) in 48 hours. This quickie diet plan is found in the Healing Powers series: The Healing Powers of Vinegar, The Healing Powers of Olive Oil, and The Healing Powers of Honey. (Don't forget the new book The Healing Powers of Coffee--another superfood fat-burner!)

Autumn Two-Day Honey, Olive Oil and Vinegar Detox Diet
Breakfast: Fresh berries (no limit)
Lunch: 4 ounces fresh white-meat turkey
Greens with dressing made of fresh parsley, 1 tablespoon each virgin olive oil and apple cider vinegar, and spices to taste
1 cup fresh berries
6 to 8 ounces fresh flounder, sole, or salmon
1 cup fresh berries
• Drink a minimum of six 8-ounce glasses of water with fresh lemon throughout the day.
• Check with your doctor before starting this or any diet.
• For an extra healthful edge to this diet plan, every day before each meal, drink 1 tablespoon of Bragg apple cider vinegar  in an 8-ounce glass of water. Add 1 to 2 tablespoons of honey, if desired. A bonus tip: Exercise at least 20-30 minutes each day.

* The Healing Powers series explains exactly how honey, olive oil, and vinegar work as fat burners. Drink 2 cups of coffee per day to boost your calorie-burning power and provide energy so you'll go do it!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

News Flash! Healing Powers of Chocolate Sweetens Spring Fever in March

Intentional Chocolate
By Cal Orey, The Writing Gourmet
The first day of spring arrives next Tuesday, March 20. You may not be sick, but spring fever can make you feel under the weather. Just when you think SAD (seasonal affective disorder) is over, spring fever can spook you like a monster movie. Picture this: You're experiencing snow or rain one day, sunny skies the next, and slush or black ice is lurking outdoors morning and night. It's March, and you find yourself with unwanted body fat, irritable, and fed up with seasonal changes. Chocolate is key--and exercise--to surviving the hump month.
What Chocolate Rx to Use:  Eat a 1-to 2-ounce piece of dark chocolate (48 percent cocoa or higher content infused with your favorite fruit or spice) and get a move on. To stay clear of black ice and falls, walking or running (include your pooch) on a treadmill can do the trick. Also, swimming in an indoor pool is another great way to get a workout and feel good, too. A bonus: The chocolate will lift your mind, body, and spirit providing extra energy to go do it.
Why You'll Like It: Both exercise and quality chocolate boost feel-good endorphins (and other good for you chocolate compounds in your body, as noted in The Healing Powers of Chocolate and reprinted by the Chef Shop), so what isn't to like? No matter what the weather is like outside, you'll feel better inside or outside after you get your choco-cize fix.
[Excerpt from The Healing Powers of Chocolate published by Kensington. This book is part of the Healing Powers series, has been translated in several languages, featured by NewsMax, msn health and fitness, and purchased by book clubs including One Spirit and Good Cook.] Note: The Healing Powers of Coffee is available for pre-order and advance copies due out in the spring.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Butlers Chocolates--Spring is in the Chocolate with a Bit of Ireland

By Cal Orey, The Writing Gourmet
Rich Belgian chocolate from Ireland is an unforgettable experience. It is a chocolate dream-come-true, and you'll want to receive chocolate from far away. It's an escape, a chocolate oasis. I loved the selection of Butlers Floral Ballotin--with a promise of bliss. Welcome to a handsome gift wrapped box containing not one but two layers of to-live-for decadent truffles and pralines.
For starters... When I untied the ribbon and unwrapped the floral paper it made me feel special. It was a pre-springtime gift--something very special--just for me. Once I opened the pristine white box I was pleasantly surprised to be greeted with a double layer of chocolates. Yes, two dozen assorted truffles and pralines. It is a marvel for a Libra (we have a difficult time deciding). The selection includes a fine variety of chocolates including a Double Chocolate Mousse and White Butter Praline. My favorites? White Chocolate Flake: A creamy white chocolate flake truffle. 70% Dark Chocolate Truffle: "The one purists prefer." Twenty Four fond memories.
As the author of The Healing Powers of Chocolate (Kensington)... I know that there are benefits of white, dark, and milk chocolate.  While dark chocolate is getting a lot of kudos in the health world, milk and white chocolate are still a big favorite for many people (of all ages), especially children. Milk chocolate is the sweetest of eating chocolate (but that can change once you adopt an acquired taste for the darker counterpart).  In my chocolate book, I discuss the secret ingredients of the nutritional perks of milk and white chocolate--and especially the amazing antioxidants in dark chocolate that are the big rave for people who eat good chocolate for its disease-fighting powers.  
Overall, the awesome presentation, distinct flavors and different textures of each chocolate, and amazing variety of Butlers Floral Ballotin wooed me, one by one... It had me at the floral gift wrapping, though. No, I did not share, nor do I plan to do that. It is a gift for me to savor during the seasonal change aka "hump month" and up to Saint Patrick's Day. Thank you Butlers Chocolate. You made my March a month to cherish. 

Friday, March 9, 2012

Spring Forward: Move Over Vinegar, Lower BP with Sweet Honey

By Cal Orey, The Writing Gourmet
As a veteran health author,  and one who pens the Healing Powers series including The Healing Powers of Honey (Kensington) I get emails weekly with the question, "Can vinegar help me lower my blood pressure?"  It can--but so can bee healthy honey...
It's the total heart-healthy diet and healthy lifestyle package that may help keep blood pressure numbers normal--not just vinegar or honey. But sweet honey (which is less acidic and easier on the tummy) can be a good thing for your heart and BP numbers. And teaming the two superfoods can be great!
How Honey Works: It's time you say, Please pass the honey," rather than pass on the natural sweet stuff, because its good-for-you antioxidants--may help reduce blood pressure. But that's not all...
The Honey Revolution author Ron Fessenden links sleep depreivation and elevated blood pressure. If you're not gettting  adequate zzz's it can lead to hypertension, since you're not allowing your body to get needed R&R. That's why consuming honey before bedtime is heart-healthy, because it reduces the release of adrenaline-- that raises blood pressure and heart rate.  Do the math: More sleep, less high BP numbers.
What You Can Do:  Try eating 1 teaspoon of honey before bedtime. Pairing it with a cup of milk or herbal tea will increase the odds of you getting seven to eight hours of sleep and keeping those BP numbers at 120/80--and ideally lower.
A Bonus: Plus, it's been proven that honey provides an instant energy boost, so you are more apt to get a move on and burn more calories the way athletes do. Translation: This spring if you shed unwanted pounds and body fat, it may also help you to keep your blood pressure in check. (Check out Tahoe Daily Tribune's "What's Cookin' at Callie's Cabin: Spring Forward with Sunny Food")
Fave Honey to Order Online: Savannah Bee Company

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Pre-Spring Surprise! A Little Java & Chocolate Can Burn Fat

By Cal Orey, The Writing Gourmet
"I should have a musett full of chocolate. These I should
distribute with a kind word and a pat on the back." --Ernest Hemingway

A cuppa coffee and chocolat go together like a man and a woman in love. Like wine, espresso, lattes, and chocolate are popular in Italy. Tuscany, known as a hot chocolate spot, is a place countless people enjoy coffee and chocolate, which can be healing for the body, mind, and spirit. 
Researchers have discovered that drinking two cups of coffee will increase metabolism significantly for at least three hours afterward, according to several past nutrition studies. This effect may be due to the caffeine, which can burn calories.
For a double effect, try pairing a piece of dark chocolate with 70 percent cocoa content and a cup of quality java. Or, sip a coffee mocha. But note, moderation is key.
And yes, I can tell you that this formula will give you the drive to get a move on and get involved in a fat-burning activity. I'm not talking about vigorous high-intensity, aerobic exercise, but keep moving by doing fun fat-burning activities--like swimming, walking the dog(s)--so you are able to stay active for a longer period of time. 
--Excerpt from The Healing Powers of Chocolate [Click your mouse to read a chapter for free. Check out The Healing Powers of Coffee (coming July 31) both published by Kensington.]
 Bonus: Some fave Chocolate Companies for Springtime: Butlers Chocolates, MarieBelle, Lake Champlain Chocolates.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Lake Champlain Chocolates: A Frog to Love for St. Patrick's Day

I love chocolate and frogs. Perhaps because the little guys like to swim and are a lucky charm is why I'm hooked; and chocolate and I go way, way back in time. Combine the two and I'm in Chocolate Frog Heaven...March is the month when chocolatiers create chocolates to celebrate Saint Patrick's Day...In my book The Healing Powers of Chocolate (by Cal Orey, published by Kensington), I include a section "Americans Love Chocolate." According to a survey conducted by Barry Callebaut, some tidbits may wow you.
* More than half of U.S. adults have tried single-origin chocolates, with organic and fair-trade chocolate growing in popularity.
* Americans are more likely to consume chocolate at work compared with Europeans.
* Fifty-four percent of Americans said they eat chocolate because they like it, while 4 percent eat chocolate for health reasons.
* Nearly 6 to 10 Americans are loyal to a particular brand of chocolate, but many are trying new brands.
When I was in research mode for my chocolate book, countless UPS boxes of chocolates ended up on my doorstep. One from Lake Champlain Chocolates made a sweet and long-lasting impression in my mind and chocolate recall memory. To decide which product I enjoyed the most would be an arduous task for sure. The day I opened the  handsome box of Lake Champlain Chocolates, I was overwhelmed.
Every item was impressive to the eye and palate. For a gal who eating mass market chocolate purchased at the grocery store, biting into an Organic Spicy Aztec Chocolate Square put me in another class of chocolate. I was hooked on spicy flavors in chocolate, thanks to the Lake Champlain Chocolates Selection, in an  impressives green box with an image of a lake surrounded by mountains--much like Lake Tahoe, my home. The epicurean nutty-tasting Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup haad me at the first bite. I was ready to move to Vermont, the chocolate company's home base.
Its specialties include novelty treats like a a chocolate frog and other spring treats.  Back to the past, I wasn't going to eat him. After all, I am a lover of all of God's creatures, big and small. But the thing is, on March 17th I took the risk and the adorable frog was eaten by me, bite by bite. And it was an unforgettable experience. I think it may be time for me to order a frog (or two) for luck's sake. Thank you again Lake Champlain Chocolates. Kiss the chocolate frogs for me.