By Julie Gregory, Chief Health Liaison for Apollo Health

Holidays indulgences happen, but the new year is the perfect time to recommit to doing better. If you slipped with your diet, let the past go and move forward with renewed hope and joy. Make 2022 the year that you consciously rethink your relationship with food. Instead of mindlessly eating because you feel lonely, sad, bored, or simply because it’s there, let’s mindfully start using food to fuel our bodies and build optimal health.

Our KetoFLEX 12/3 plan is the only diet that has been clinically shown to help reverse cognitive decline. Even better, it can aid in healing the chronic conditions that are risk factors for Alzheimer’s, including obesity, hypertension, insulin resistance, vascular disease, and more. Hippocrates had it right, food is medicine — but it needn’t be a bitter pill to swallow. KetoFLEX 12/3 is not only delicious, it’s also your key to freedom. When practiced within the context of the protocol, you’ll enjoy renewed health that offers the energy to pursue your passion — to travel, spend time with family and friends, and enjoy the retirement of your dreams. You can eat less often and feel more satisfied than ever.

My goal is to inspire you to get into the kitchen to get creative with real, clean, whole food, using ingredients that you have on hand in fresh, new ways. Instead of sharing a formal recipe, I’ll share a “recipe concept” in an effort to encourage you to get creative, explore, and improvise with food. Put on some comfy clothes, your favorite music, and get in the kitchen!

Rustic Salmon Salad

One of my favorite KetoFLEX 12/3 go-to meals is a simple, rustic salmon salad (see pic above) with loads of non-starchy vegetables from every color of the rainbow in a creamy aioli. It’s incredibly neuroprotective, loaded with omega-3s, phytonutrients, fiber, polyphenols, healthy fats, and is so easy to put together. From start to finish, it takes about 15 minutes. Feel free to put your personal spin on this idea by using any KetoFLEX 12/3 protein with any combination of non-starchy vegetables, herbs, and spices.

There are three main components: the protein + the aioli (which acts as a binder) + the non-starchy vegetables = neuroprotective yum.

Protein Choose from among the ideas listed below or experiment with any approved KetoFLEX 12/3 protein.

● Salmon:  I often use a leftover filet from the night before or canned wild-caught Alaskan Sockeye Salmon from Wild Planet.
● Lump crab: Fresh or from BPA-free cans or pouches.
● Pastured eggs: Cook them so the yolks are still a little soft.
● Pastured poultry: Leftovers are great; just shred with a fork.
● Extra Firm Tofu: No need to cook this vegan option. Just press well to drain and crumble into bite-sized pieces. It will pick up the flavors from the aioli, spices, and herbs.
● Hemp hearts: This is another great vegan option and a fun way to add some crunch.
● Nuts: A sprinkle of shelled pistachios, cashews, or slivered almonds add both flavor and crunch.
● Seeds: Pumpkin, sunflower, or sesame are some of my favorites.
● Legumes: Feel free to add a handful of legumes for a hardier dish. 

Aioli This magic creamy sauce originating from the Mediterranean is similar in texture to mayonnaise. But unlike mayonnaise which is often made from canola oil and eggs, aioli is typically made with olive oil and garlic. I’m going to share a super simple cheater version (that includes an egg) and takes less than 3 minutes to make.

I use high polyphenol extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) for the health benefit. If you’re not familiar with it, you may have to acclimate your tastebuds by using oils with a lower polyphenol count until you grow accustomed to a more bitter taste and the tickle in the back of your throat that accompanies high polyphenol EVOO. Feel free to blend lower and higher polyphenol varieties during this adjustment period. Apollo Health subscribers can see High Polyphenol Extra Virgin Olive Oil- Your Top Pick to learn more about the health benefits and for a discount from our partner Amphora Nueva.

Start by grinding several cloves of garlic with a mortar and pestle. Once ground, transfer to a tall cylindrical container. Add one cup of EVOO, a fresh pastured egg (wash the shell first), the juice of 1/2 lemon or lime (scant), and a dash of salt. Place your immersion blender all the way to the bottom of the container to ensure access to all ingredients and blend for 30 seconds. Voila! You’ve created a healthful, delicious aioli. Experiment with adding different fresh herbs and seasonings for variety. Some of my favorites include finely chopped tarragon, parsley, basil, cilantro, dill, mint, rosemary or chives, freshly ground pepper, paprika, citrus zest, Dijon mustard, and even finely chopped Bubbies Kosher Dill pickles to add a probiotic punch. (Rescue Hack: Every once in a while, the aioli inexplicably doesn’t bind. If that happens, never fear! Simply add an additional egg. Blend for another 30 seconds for a perfectly creamy sauce.)   

Non-Starchy Vegetables  This is where I go crazy. I really load up on the veggies for both the phytonutrients and fiber. Any non-starchy vegetable is fine to add. Depending upon the vegetable, I sometimes lightly cook them, such as with broccoli florets. If cooking, always be sure to chop your cruciferous vegetables 10-45 minutes before to maximize the antioxidant effect of sulforaphane. Some options include:

● Broccoli: I prefer my broccoli to be lightly cooked; it has an amazing detoxifying effect.
● Carrots: Chopped or julienned is great.
● Peppers: I tend to favor red, orange, or yellow. I always buy organic as these are on the Dirty Dozen list.
● Sweet or red onions: Just a little adds sweet crunch and makes everything better!
● Scallions: I love the pop of color. 
● Celery: I always include the leaves for extra flavor. Celery always needs to be organic.  
● Red cabbage: I enjoy this raw; the color, crunch, and detoxifying effect make this a favorite.
● Radishes: I especially like the color and slightly sweeter taste of watermelon radishes when available.
● Tomatoes: Cherry tomatoes, cut in half, work well. These also have to be organic.      
● Avocado: Try to get one that isn’t overly ripe; cut into bite-sized chunks.
● Artichoke hearts: I buy them non-marinated, in jars.
● Jicama slices: Who doesn’t need a little extra prebiotic sweet crunch?
● Microgreens: I love a rainbow variety.

The rest is pretty simple. Mix your protein and veggies in a large bowl. Add the desired amount of aioli, favorite spices, and herbs, and gently stir. You can enjoy it by the bowlful, scooped onto a crunchy lettuce leaf or seed cracker.


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