gorgeous gogi berries….

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Pretty, huh?  The Tibetan School of Medicine has been growing this superfood for 2500 years!

But you don’t have to go to Tibet to try this little gem.  American gogi berries are grown mostly in the southwest deserts (AZ, CA, CO, UT, NM, TX) with a few grown in Mexico and South America.

These little beauts can really pack a punch!  They are known to:

  • boost immune function
  • increase alkalinity and vitality
  • protect your liver
  • improve your eyesight
  • improve your blood quality…..and more!

If you want to live for a loooong time, and actually feel good, then this superfood is for you.  It’s even been nicknamed “the longevity fruit” or even better, “little red diamonds“.    Enough said.  I’m in.

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The gogi berry tastes kind of like a cherry and a cranberry got married and had wrinkled baby berries.  Be sure and look for organic berries that haven’t been sprayed with the pesticides that those of us in the ’60’s played in…..(if you are from the south you will remember the ‘mosquito’ trucks that drove around while we ran and played in the “mist”….sigh).

Gogi berries can be soaked and rehydrated in water that you can use for your base in your smoothie!  It’s easy!  Take about 1/2 cup of berries and soak in 3 cups of pure water.  Soak for about 2-4 hours.  Strain and add handful of berries and 1 cup of remaining gogi water, a tablespoon of agave syrup or honey and 1/4 – 1/2 tsp vanilla.  BLEND and dance.  You might want to add some cacao powder to the mix.  Feel free to mess around with the ingredients until you find the flavor you like best!

Gogi berries can also be added to cacao nibs, dried fruits, nuts and seeds to make a SUPER trail mix!  Have fun…but not just any fun….have a gogi day!

Cacao! Cacao! (not a bird call)

Ahhh….the lovely cacao nut.  It’s latin name, Theobroma cacao, means “food of the gods”.  And why shouldn’t it be called that!!  Did you know that all chocolate is made from cacao beans (aka Cocoa beans)?

Those crazy Mayans even used cacao for currency!  Crazy Mayans.

Cacao offers cardiovascular benefits and cancer protection, and also helps lower cholesterol.  Raw cacao has a higher antioxidant rating than blueberries, acai, and even goji berries. It really is a superfood! 

Here’s the cool part….there is no cacao season.  Chocolate is always in season!  Wooo hoooo!!  Cacao trees trees grow in the shade, mostly in Central  and South America and Southern Mexico.  Their flowers have five petals with a lightly scented, pale, mushroom like growths which grow straight out of the trunk or large branches.

Did you know that you can purchase cacao trees from the internet and place them in a greenhouse?  They’ll be lovin’ them some humidity….just like the crazy Mayans!

What’s in it for me?

  • antioxidants
  • magnesium
  • iron
  • chromium
  • manganese
  • zinc
  • copper
  • vitamin C
  • omega-6 fatty acids

How do I use it? (via)

  • Purchase raw cacao products (beans, nibs, powder, butter) and blend them into your favorite beverage.  One tablespoon of cacao powder per quart works great with any beverage.  Blend cacao into coffee for a special treat!
  • Sprinkle raw cacao beans (nibs) on your favorite dessert instead of chocolate chips.  They are the original chocolate chips!
  • Add to trailmix
  • If you love dark, bitter chocolate, eat the beans by themselves.

Know before you go: (via)

Raw cacao is just like most things in the world of health and nutrition- the information changes fast. You need to keep on top of the news. There are many that believe that chocolate, even in it’s purest form of raw cacao, is still not very good for you, perhaps even toxic. The stimulant quality may agitate kidney and liver functioning. Some tests find it to be addictive, leading to mood swings and other withdrawal symptoms when not consumed regularly. Sexual dysfunction has also been listed as a possible side effect of chocolate intake- yikes! Certainly you must never blindly trust the information given to you by someone who is selling the product. Conduct your own research and see what the experts are saying. Though chocolate may not be the knight in shining armor that so many of us wish it was, when eaten in moderation, it doesn’t seem to be causing too much harm either. To play it safe, consume chocolate on special occasions and look for your magnesium and antioxidants elsewhere.

love Rocky Point? need a job?

Hey, beach go-ers!  Most of us Arizonan‘s know all about Rocky Point (Puerto Peñasco, Mexico) enjoying the surf and the sand.  But how about a job?  Know español or ingles?

Here’s the scoop:  You need a high school education and an engineering degree or a professional technical degree to get your zapato in the door…  Check out this Press Release that just hit the streets!

City Press Release. July 19, 2012

Through the investment of 100 million dollars and the creation of at least 400 jobs, over the next three years, the Aeromk II company – which builds jet planes for aerial combat training – is setting up shop in Puerto Peñasco, announced Mayor Alejandro Zepeda Munro. The Mayor mentioned there would be 67 million dollars within the first phase, and the hiring of 150 people to begin operations within the facilities of the “Sea of Cortez” International Airport.

“We see how in Sonora there is a push for the aerospace industry and in Peñasco we have been able to ensure the installation of this plant in our city, which as the City Government we, along with the Mayan Group, have provided all pathways to bring about the project,” explained Zepeda.

He highlighted this will be the only plant in Mexico since 1968 to build a plane as well as be the only Aerial Training Center in our country, which will be reflected in the level of skilled labor required. He mentioned that hiring has already begun, with a highschool degree as the minimum requirement, along with professional technical or engineering degrees related with metal-mechanics; in addition, a basic level of English is also needed. The lowest salaries will begin at 4 times the minimum wage.

It is believed the plant will take up 60,000 square meters and will be located at the airport, where applications and interviews are already being accepted and held. The Mayor expressed the Plant project is also being considered for a reality show with the History Channel, with respect to activities done as part of the Training Center. He also stated the coming arrival of other companies to serve as suppliers for Aeromk II, including Garmin and General Electric.

So wipe off that sunscreen and shake off the sand!  Let’s get a job!!

And……as always…….you’re welcome!