By Dr. Michelle Hagel, ND

It has been a tough year this year, with lots of stress and isolation. It is more important than ever to support our mental and physical health. Don’t be afraid to ask for help, talk to loved ones, talk to a professional.

Nutrient injections are a great option to support mood, stress management energy, and sleep. By injecting the nutrients they bypass digestion and are ready in high levels for absorption throughout the body. There are many options for injectable nutrients, you can discuss with your naturopathic doctor to see what is the best fit for you to optimize your nutrient levels.

Now let’s talk about how to get some of these brain important nutrients from our food.

This year is going to look a little bit different for everyone but that shouldn’t stop us from enjoying some yummy food. Avocados are high in good fats, our brain loves good fats and so think of this delicious brain food. I’m also a huge turkey fan I always look forward to turkey dinner, you know the feel good hormone that usually puts us to sleep after turkey dinner is called tryptophan. Trytophan is a precursor to both melatonin and our happy neurotransmitter serotonin.

Chocolate Avocado Pudding

2 Avocados

1/2 cup Pitted Dates (chopped, soaked and drained)

2 tbsp Maple Syrup (I usually do not add this the dates make it sweet enough for me)

1/2 cup Plain Coconut Milk (from the carton)

1/3 cup Cocoa Powder

Add the avocado, soaked dates and maple syrup to the food processor and pulse to combine. Add the coconut milk and blend until the avocado mixture is smooth, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.

Add the cocoa powder and blend again until combined.

Roasted Turkey and Carrots

2 1/4 lbs Turkey Breast, Skin On (bone-in)

1 Navel Orange (cut into quarters)

1 Yellow Onion (cut into quarters)

3/4 tsp Sea Salt (divided)

3 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil (divided)

1 tsp Fresh Sage (finely chopped)

1 tbsp Rosemary (finely chopped)

1 1/2 tbsp Thyme (finely chopped, divided)

2/3 cup Water

6 Carrot (medium, peeled, roughly chopped)

Preheat the oven to 425ºF. Arrange the orange and onion quarters in a large baking dish or a roasting pan.

Season the turkey breast on all sides with two-thirds of the salt. Place the seasoned turkey breast on top of the orange and onion in the baking dish.

In a small mixing bowl combine half of the oil with the sage, rosemary and two-thirds of the thyme. Spoon the oil mixture evenly over top of the turkey breast. Add the water to the bottom of the baking dish then bake the turkey breast for 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place the carrots on the baking sheet and season with the remaining oil and salt.

After the turkey has cooked for 20 minutes, reduce the oven to 350ºF (176ºC). Place the carrots in the oven with the turkey. Continue cooking for 30 to 40 minutes or until the turkey is cooked through, the skin is brown and crispy and the carrots are cooked. Be sure to add more water to the pan if it evaporates too quickly or if the pan juices start to burn.

Let the turkey rest for at least 10 minutes before slicing. Season the roasted carrots with the remaining thyme. Divide the turkey and carrots between plates and enjoy.