Tag Archives: Thanksgiving

My Ten Truths of 2012

As I look back on 2012, I can’t help but appreciate all I’ve experienced and all I’ve learned.

It was an interesting year for me, to say the least. Action-packed and educational.

I wanted to share with you what crystallized for me in the last 12 months:

1. Listen to my body
Earlier in the year, I wrote about craving cauliflower. As my tastes are always changing, that ship sailed and now I’m into green beans for the first time in my life.

Let your body tell you about different foods. Don’t force something that doesn’t appeal. And while you may not like something now, be open to the possibility that one day you might.

2. My sweet potatoes kill
They really do. I make the best damn sweet potatoes.

Here’s how:
-Wash the sweet potato
-Stab all over with a knife
-Wrap tightly in unbleached parchment paper
-Bake on the rack at 350 for about an hour to 1:20 (until it’s really squishy to the touch)

You won’t need to add sugar, butter, or anything. It’s that sweet. And that delicious.

3. Slow down
Sometimes I just have to slow down. I can’t do it all. Nor should I try. Nor should you.

4. I fell in love with my kitchen
Fall in love with yours. Cooking at home is the healthiest way to live.

5. Embrace imperfections
I’m still working on this one, but I’m getting better. I’m finding the beauty in the flaws…most of the time.

6. Diet can change everything
I used to be the sleepiest person. Now that I live my life free of the white stuff (white carbs, white sugar, etc.), I have tons of energy. Sometimes, too much (See #3). If something isn’t quite right with you, look at your diet first.

7. Simplify
I discovered that I’m happier when I simplify things in my life. I will continue to do so. Look to see where in your life you can reduce.

My new favorite product is NuttZo Seven Nut and Seed ButterWith chocolate. So I’m getting my chocolate fix with a protein snack all in one. One spoonful packs a punch. Yum, yum, and…organic, of course. 😉

8. Baby Steps
Rome wasn’t built in a day, right? Some of the greatest accomplishments take time…lots of time. Stick with it.

9. Life takes unexpected turns
I’ve been very surprised by my life in 2012. It took some turns that were unexpected, exciting, scary, challenging, and fulfilling. I’ve grown a lot and grown some gray hairs to prove it. 2012 was further proof that when (wo)man plans, god laughs.

Which god? Doesn’t matter. Have your own kind of faith and let it guide you.

10.  I’m a blogger
That’s right. 2012 made me a blogger. And I’m loving it. Here’s a big thank you to all of you for your support and interest. I have some great topics lined up for 2013, so stay tuned.

In the meantime, what have you learned this year?

Happy New Year!

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Filed under Baby Steps, Health

Thanks for Giving Me Alternatives…

As we head into Thanksgiving – my most favorite holiday EVER (hooray! it’s almost here!) – we prepare for the legendary feast that means full bellies and a few extra pounds (eek! let’s bond, mr. elliptical!).

You know how everyone says the turkey makes you tired? It’s probably just the ridiculous volume of food we consume, not the turkey.  When we overeat, the rest of the body shuts down so the digestive system can do it’s thing.

Ah, the third Thursday of November.

It’s my worst day by far. But SO worth it.

That being said, I still bring the health coach part of me to the kitchen. Here’s what I do to make the Thanksgiving table that much healthier for my family…

1. Organic, Free-Range Turkey

Conventional meat is not raised humanely and the stress and fear that these animals experience when they are jammed into cages and can’t move, and are slaughtered in frightening ways, creates stress hormones that end up in the meat we eat. Not to mention, they’re given genetically modified feed, which they can’t digest, and that combined with their living conditions makes them fat and sick…cue the antiobiotics. ALL OF THAT ends up on our plates. Gross.

Organic and free-range, on the other hand, mean the animals live and eat the way animals are supposed to: outside with food they can digest. Make the investment in your health and go organic with your meat this holiday season. We’ll be eating Mary’s Organic.

2. Organic Potatoes

Because they grow in the ground, potatoes soak up all of the nasty pesticides in the soil like a sponge, so organic is the way to go.

And for those of you with sweet potato dishes, Trader Joe’s has the most delicious organic sweets. Stay away from the cans, which have BPA, and do fresh. You’ll taste the difference.

3. Use Ghee or Coconut Oil for Cooking and Baking

Coconut is just the best damn oil. If you want the butter taste, though, choose ghee (clarified butter) which can be found at health food and specialty stores. For my concerns about conventional dairy, check out my post on it.

Two reasons ghee and coconut oil are better options:
1. Because of their heart healthy medium-chain fatty acids
2. Because they can both withstand higher temperatures than butter and other oils before breaking down.

Learn more about ghee here. Make sure you choose high quality (not commercial versions) – go organic for both and unrefined for coconut oil.

4. Healthy Cookware/Bakeware and Storage

Check my previous post for my favorite kitchen tools. And don’t forget to store your leftovers in glass containers – NOT PLASTIC! Some might argue that leftovers are the best part of Thanksgiving…so keep them BPA-free!

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! I, for one, am grateful for so very much. Take that moment to reflect on your life, enjoy the time with your family and friends, and have a kickass meal and a wonderful holiday!

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Filed under BPA, Health, Organic, Tips and Tricks

Falling Into Fall

Wow. Summer is done. I think it’s officially the fastest season of the four. Every year it seems to fly by in a flash!

I hope you all managed to squeeze in a relaxing vacation. Ever noticed how amazing someone looks after some R & R? Yeah. Vacations are super healthy.

I wish I could say I took one, but alas, there’s too much going on for me right now. I’ve been working ’round the clock!

And although it was a VERY busy summer, it was a fulfilling one. The most rewarding things are those we work hardest at, and I can say that I’ve seen many labors of love come to fruition of late. (Keep reading for more on that!)

As we settle into Fall, I’ll revisit some old recipes I haven’t made in awhile and stick my hand into a fresh pumpkin again!

Pumpkin is absolutely one of my favorite foods – I love the taste and I love that it’s high in fiber and low in calories, as well as rich in so many vitamins and minerals. I add it to oatmeal, smoothies, steamed veggies, baked goods…pretty much anything I can.

And pumpkin seeds (pepitas) are a superfood – loaded with good stuff we need like magnesium and zinc – as well as high in protein and fiber. But don’t over-roast them: 20 minutes is the max.

**For all my pregnant readers, you should know that pumpkin seeds are a fantastic food for you and your growing baby. With important vitamins, minerals, and healthy fats, you should make these little guys a regular addition to your snacks or meals.

As for those labors of love I mentioned above, I am thrilled to announce that we have opened our much-anticipated Roastery Roll-Up Bar at Barefoot Coffee Roasters. It looks amazing and our incredible team has worked incredibly hard on it. Many thanks to them for making my vision a reality.

So come on over to Barefoot Coffee Roasters at 76 Sunol Street in San Jose for some kickass coffee!

 

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Filed under Health, Superfoods, Vegetables