Friday, October 21, 2016

Nutrition tips to keep your immune system tough through the flu & winter season

While we all have a good idea that what we eat affects how we feel. It can be easy to forget that before the pharmaceutical industry, our medicines came from natural sources.

At the time a lot of these things were consumed as food or drink, and we can still receive the benefits of imbibing them now. Read on to find out what they are.

Vitamin C

There are plenty of things that contain a good dose of Vitamins C like carrots and bell peppers. But did you know that Brussel Sprouts also have lots too?


Well, if you are a sprout fan, then you should definitely start eating them on more than just your Christmas dinner. This is because getting enough Vitamin C can help boost your immunity to disease. It acts as a natural antibiotic killing off harmful bacteria in your system. I love grilling Brussel sprouts but in the winter, I often steam them.


We hear a lot about antioxidant and free radicals these days but does anyone known what they actually are? Well, free radicals are the nasty things that our cells produce when they take in and use oxygen.

These can be harmful your systems so we don't want too many of them hanging around in our body. That is where antioxidants come in.

As we don't want too many oxidants or free radicals in our system eating foods like sweet potatoes and oysters are a good idea. They release molecules that attached to the free radicals making sure that they don't get reabsorbed by the body and cause harm. Oysters are also high in magnesium & zinc, which help boost immunity.


Thursday, October 20, 2016

So You're More Active...What's Next?

Most of us have had some fitness aims or goals over the years. And most of us know how hard it can be to achieve them. Some people find it easier to scale things back a bit and concentrate on one thing at a time. You might try increasing the number of steps you walk or try being a little more active at lunch time. Increasing your activity is certainly one of the best ways to improve your fitness and tone up a little. But what comes next?

Health and fitness go hand in hand. It’s worth considering how you can also improve your health now you’ve made those big steps toward fitness. Walking is one of those activities that can help you become more active and make you healthier. It’s not just your physical health you need to consider. Your mental and emotional health are just as important. Walking can help calm your mind, and you’ll feel emotionally well by taking in the fresh air and beautiful surroundings.

This picture is from

Monday, October 17, 2016

Health is Wealth Toolkit: Addressing & Eliminating Food Guilt

One strategy in both weight management and healthy lifestyle modification that does not get enough attention is the concept of addressing and eliminating guilty eating. Have you ever felt guilty about eating a meal before it has even been served to you? Do you feel bad whenever you eat something sweet, like a donut of piece of cake? Do you eat food that tastes bad to you because it’s “healthy”?

We know that training of behaviors is possible (Pavlov’s dog for example) and sometimes we develop behavior patterns that are completely unintentional. When you are happy and eating, your body saves that information as something that brings you pleasure & positive things happen down to the cellular level in your body. When you are sad/guilty and eating, your body saves this information as something that is negative and negative things happen in your body (such as increased cortisol).

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Breast Cancer Nutrition Awareness featuring GoMacro

October is breast cancer awareness month and I'd like to introduce you to Go Macro. GoMacro is a family-owned vegan food company that was started by a mother-daughter duo on their organic family farm. They have two different lines of products- MacroBars and Thrive. In honor of their co-founders breast cancer recovery, they have released a special “give-back bar” that donates 10% its proceeds to the Keep a Breast Foundation. I love this bar because it touches on some important nutritional concepts (antioxidants, fiber, plant-based). Learn more about the awesome Keep a Breast Foundation here. Let us get brought up to speed on some breast cancer stats:

According to, here are some recent statistics on breast cancer in the United States (source here): 

  • In 2016, there are more than 2.8 million women with a history of breast cancer in the U.S. This includes women currently being treated and women who have finished treatment.
  • About 85% of breast cancers occur in women who have no family history of breast cancer. These occur due to genetic mutations that happen as a result of the aging process and life in general, rather than inherited mutations.
  • Besides skin cancer, breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer among American women. In 2016, it's estimated that just under 30% of newly diagnosed cancers in women will be breast cancers.
  • About 1 in 8 U.S. women (about 12%) will develop invasive breast cancer over the course of her lifetime.

Amelia, Breast Cancer Survivor & her daughter: Co-founders of GoMacro

Here’s the thing, no matter what illness or disease a person may become afflicted with in life, they can fight it better if they have been following a healthy lifestyle beforehand. Being an overweight woman is a risk factor for developing breast cancer, possibly because the more the fat cells grow, the more estrogen is produced from the fat cells. That production of excess estrogen can signal breast cell growth, which in turn increases the risk of developing breast cancer.

What can you do from a nutritional point of view?

Sunday, October 9, 2016

The protein powder and coffee mystery has been solved!

A few weeks ago, I tweeted out to my universal fitfam asking the question on whether there had been any success on mixing protein powder and coffee together. There was a lot of interest in the question, but no one seemed to have answers. Until now. I had a very successful afternoon in my test kitchen and just could not wait to share the results with you all! This is exactly what I did:

Thursday, October 6, 2016

A Vegan & Gluten-Free food that tastes good? Absolutely Yes!

One of the greatest things that I have learned about following a low-Fodmap lifestyle is the incredible amount of gluten-free foods that actually taste good because I have tried many GF foods that initially turned me off from the idea of even trying to follow a low-Fodmap plan but luckily, I have been able to try quite a few GF foods that seriously impressed my taste buds. I reached out to 88 Acres because I was searching for something that I could keep on hand when I am commuting around, shuffling the kids from one place to another, or simply to satisfy my cravings without the panic of reading every food label in the convenience stores. I was able to sample the Triple Berry, Apple & Ginger, and my personal favorite…the chocolate and sea salt bars.

Here is the deal with these: These are handcrafted by people who have first hand experience with the dangers of food allergens. Their bakery is free of peanuts, tree nuts, wheat, soy, dairy, sesame, eggs, fish, and shellfish. These are vegan, gluten-free, and non-GMO project verified. And, I also was impressed that they mention that their bakery is latex-free. Many of you reading might look at the list of things that are not included in their foods and think “that sounds way too healthy, it must not be that good.” FALSE! Not only are the bars really good, but also how many times have you been able to look at food you have purchased and identify the ingredients listed on the label while you are actually eating it? I took the picture of my chocolate and sea salt bar and did not use a filter so you can see that these are the real deal.

No Filter. Look at the goodness!

Monday, October 3, 2016

PB Chocolate Coconut Protein Balls featuring Paleo Pro Powder

Who doesn't love to make homemade protein snack balls? I have had the wonderful opportunity to try the Paleo Pro products and I am SO impressed. In fact, I used their Aztec Vanilla protein powder in what has now become my favorite shake combination ever (1/2 frozen blueberries, 30g Aztec Vanilla protein powder & 10 ounces of coconut almond milk). I am an unbiased and honest reviewer for everything I write on this blog and can tell you, as someone who has a sensitive stomach, these products made me feel great: no bloating, etc. And OMG THEY HAVE A PUMPKIN SPICE FLAVORED POWDER! Yes, I am one of those people who loves on that pumpkin spice. Judge away. You know you want some- click here to get some. No soy, no whey, no added sugar, no gluten, grains, wheat. artificial ingredients, and so on. The cost for these products is very reasonable given their high quality. Way to go, Paleo Pro! You have a fan for life. I loved making the protein balls and was originally going to use almond meal in the recipe but am so glad I used the coconut flour because it added some great fiber content. The recipe is below- give them a try!