Sunday, April 21, 2019

A Gray Day and a Dairy Free Chocolate Cafe au Lait

So, at the moment, I'm eating in the style of Low Fodmap.  I'm not eating regular sugar.  Or dairy.  Or caffeine.  Or a bunch of other things...

It's a gray day here in Kirkland and our apartment is chilly.  Hubby is sipping on coffee and I'm craving something warm and delish.  A latte would be totally amazing right now.  Hubby offers to walk down to the coffee shop with me so I can get one, but I know the "alternative milks" at the local coffee shops all have sugar or carrageenan, or something else that isn't so good for the gut, so I shake my head.  I could just go for my normal drink and have a cuppa herbal tea, but now lattes are floating around in my head.  

What's a girl to do?




Then I remember I have some instant decaf in the cupboard.  (It's actually pretty good for instant...and for decaf.)  And then I remember I bought some unsweetened, carrageenan-free vanilla almond milk the other day...  My face brightens.  I can make something Latte-ish at home!  

Yay! 

But now, how do I make it extra delish?  A little creamy and a little sweet?  Maybe even, dare I say it, chocolatey?  

Well, I've got some Montezuma's Absolute Black Dark Chocolate (100% cocoa solids)...not a diet food, by any means, but it IS milk and sugar free!

And I've also got some Lakanto Liquid Monkfruit Extract (zero calories, zero glycemic, doesn't elevate blood sugar or insulin) in the fridge.  

I think this is doable.

Here's what I came up with.  (And by the way, it totally hit the spot!  Even more so the next day when I made it with half a date rather than monkfruit extract!)

I kinda didn't measure, so I'm guessing a bit---plus it depends on how big your mug is, if you like your Cafe au Lait chocolate forward or coffee forward, and how sweet you like your stuff...so adjust as needed!  :)  Please read all the directions FIRST!  


Day 1 with Monkfruit Extract



Day 2 with 1/2 Date (Much better IMHO)

Chocolate Cafe au Lait Sans Milk


Equipment:

  • Small pot with high edges
  • Immersion Blender
  • Large mug


Ingredients:

  • 14 oz almond milk or other non-dairy milk (I used Malk's Organic Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk*)  
  • 2-2.5 tsp instant decaf coffee (or regular if you like high octane)
  • 1 square Montezuma's Absolute Black Dark Chocolate 
  • 1-2 DROPS Lakanto Liquid Monkfruit Extract**  OR half of a date (Or other sweetener YOU like!)
  • Sprinkle of Cinnamon

Directions:
  1. Gently heat your almond milk in a small pot with high edges
  2. Once warm, add instant coffee and stir
  3. Add your dark chocolate, stir again until the chocolate melts
  4. Add Monkfruit extract (or other sweetener--1/2 a date worked really well and still keeps it fairly low fodmap!)
  5. When hot, remove from heat.  
  6. If you like a foamy drink or if you added a date, CAREFULLY use your immersion blender to blend until foamy.  Tip:  Tilt pan (so the liquid all goes to one side) and be sure your immersion blender is fully submerged before turning on so you don't splatter and burn yourself! 
  7. Pour into your favorite mug and sprinkle with cinnamon!
  8. Enjoy! 
*Malk is one of my favorite almond milk brands because it doesn't add any crazy carrageenan, gums, colors, sugars, etc.  I thought is was stupid expensive the first time I bought it, but when you compare it to the cost of a coffee-shop latte, you actually SAVE money!  Plus, Whole Foods often has it on sale (and if you're a Prime member, you get extra discounts!)

**If you've never used Lakanto Liquid Monkfruit Extract, please be warned that a little goes a long way and you're better off using 1 drop, tasting, and adding more if needed.  It's pretty strong.  If you don't like liquid monkfruit (cuz for me it has a weird aftertaste), you can of course, use a different sweetener of your choice (coconut sugar, stevia, agave, or soak half a date and blend along with your completed cafe au lait!) or just leave out sweetener completely!


Cheers!
Dorothy




Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Brownies Made with Black Beans--Yay or Nay?

So I have a lot of favorite "Health People" online--Andrea Beaman, Mark Hyman, Dr. Axe, Vani Hari (Food Babe)Bree Argetsinger (The "Betty Rocker")...the list goes on!  

One of my favorite "Health People" is Talia Pollock, the "Party in my Plants" girl, the girl who "Takes the Hell out of Healthy Living". I mean, c'mon, when you have a tagline like that, how can anyone resist reading more?  The girl just cracks me up!  She's got a great sense of humor and totally rocks recipes for healthy eating!  If you're trying to bring more veggies into your life, check her out!

Anyway...I digress. I signed up for Talia's newsletter, and in her last one, she shared a recipe for "Fooled Ya" Brownies.  Brownies made with no grains, no eggs (good for vegans!), not a whole bunch of sugar, and no oil!  Plus, they're made with black beans--helloooo protein and fiber! 
 Now in her newsletter, Talia swore up and down about how delish these were and how you could make them and fool all the health food haters in your life because these Black Bean Brownies taste just like the real thing (you know, the yummy tasting brownies made with crazy amounts of oil and sugar, white flour, artificial colorings, flavorings, and other nasty junk?).  So I HAD to make them.

What did I think?  


I'm not the best at photos, but this is what the "Fooled Ya" Brownies looked like, right out of the pan!  Pretty good, right?

I thought they were totally amazing!  Totally fudgy, great texture, and just enough sweetness when you add the chocolate chips (I used mini dairy-free ones)!  A total win!  

Now this being said, I don't eat a lot of sugar or sweets anymore.  Not 'cuz I don't like them, but because I'm trying to re-balance and heal my gut which has been a mess since I was a kid.  So...I have given up eggs and dairy (since I recently found out I'm "allergic" to them) and I RARELY have added sugar of any kind because sugar is not friendly to an unhappy gut.  Plus I mostly stay away from gluten (another gut irritant).  So brownies aren't typically a food I eat.  

So are these "Fooled Ya Brownies" REALLY good, or is it just me?  I had to call in a pro for a second opinion.  

Now, my dear sweet Hubby is a brownie connoisseur.  He even has his own brownie pan that only makes brownies with edges (no "middle pieces").  He believes a good brownie must have edges!  

Image result for the edge brownie pan
"The Baker's Edge" Brownie Pan

Unfortunately, when I made these "Fooled Ya" Brownies, Hubby knew I wasn't making "NORMAL" brownies, so when I gave him one, he immediately stuck up his nose...

"Is there seaweed in there?  Quinoa?  Kale?  What's in there?  I'm not eating that! GROSS!"

And then he proceeded to make loud gagging sounds.

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Sigh. Definitely NOT an unbiased opinion!   

Ugh!  Now I STILL don't know if they're as good as I think they are!  

So I need a little help...  

I'm calling all you adventurous eaters.
  
You "health nuts".
  
My Dairy-Free, Egg-Free, Gluten Free Friends.

Those of you who aren't afraid to eat whole, real foods, in new and exciting ways! 


I need you to make this "Fooled Ya" Brownie recipe from Talia Pollock and tell me what you think.  See if you can find some friends to share them with (and don't tell them they're made with beans until after you've asked them what they thought!).  I'm so curious!  

I'll be waiting to hear your opinion!!!

Until then, 

dorothy

PS
Talia also has a Blondie recipe made with chickpeas.  Yes, I said chickpeas (AKA garbanzo beans).  I need to try this one too!  :)  



   

Thursday, March 28, 2019

Have a Nice Relaxing Glass of Roundup by the Fire...


Wait.  What did you say?  Yeah, I said it.  Most likely, there's Roundup in your wine. And your beer.

 

So what's the big deal?  The big deal is, Roundup is a weedkiller.  It's main ingredient is glyphosate--a "probable human carcinogen" and it's invading our food system.  

It's even in your beer and wine. So much for a relaxing drink by the fire...

OK, so whatever.  The EPA and Monsanto say that the levels of glyphosate in our foods are too low to cause cancer.  But what if they're wrong?  Or worse, what if they're hiding the truth? (After all, there's a lot of money in the Roundup Biz!)  

According to Food Activist, Vani Hari (AKA "Food Babe"), "Glyphosate is sprayed on 80% of crops in this country and is now so rampant in our environment that it’s found in honeycerealsmeatdrinking waterbreast milkinfant formulachipscookiesair samples… the list goes on."   It's kinda scary...a little bit here, a little bit there...how much is too much?

I don't know about you, but I don't really wanna chance it.  Cancer is bad news.  This is why I buy most foods as "Certified Organic".  Though it doesn't guarantee that the food is glyphosate-free (because glyphosate can travel to the organic farms via soil or water), it DOES guarantee that the Certified Organic farms don't USE glyphosate...and one less farm using it, is a VERY good thing. More Organic farms means less glyphosate (and other toxic chemicals) in our future.     


Are You a Food Nerd like me?  Want more info (including how to avoid Roundup)?  Check out the following articles!

The Ultimate Guide On How To Avoid Roundup Weed Killer In Your Food


Saturday, February 9, 2019

Resolution Tip #5: Work With Your Season, Have Fun, and Make Some Memories

Hey Friends!

So in my last post, I talked about what to do when it's snowing and icy and your gym is closed and you don't want your nostril hairs to freeze when you do your outdoor workout.  

We just brought the workout indoors, right?

But what if you didn't?  

Like, what if you embraced the cold?  What if you welcomed it with open arms and decided to rock your exercise in a Wintery Wonderland?  Playing outside can be totally fun and be a great workout at the same time!

Image result for adults making a snowman

Image result for making snow angels



RTC skating rink
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Image result for having fun skiing Related image 
 Image result for adult on a sled


Plus, if you bring family and friends along, you end up having lots of laughs and making amazing memories!  Need proof?


Here's me as a little one, pushing my Dad down the hill on a sled!  It was fun being the grownup!  (And it looks like he enjoyed being the kid!)



There I am on the left, rockin' every available color of the rainbow as I skied the slopes of New Hampshire with my Godfather, my neighbors, and my Dad.  My Godfather had such a wipe out that day--jumped a mogul and ended up crashing through the woods, fur hat flying in the air, arms and legs flailing everywhere!  People thought he was some kind of a deranged bear!


Snowshoeing with friends...right here in WA!


Hubby and I making a VERY happy snowman!


Having a walk (and a sing, and a dance) through the woods with my crazy Father-In-Law!  Always so much fun!


Massachusetts...
AFTER hearing the news that school was cancelled (I was a school teacher) but BEFORE doing any shoveling.  That was a big job ahead of us!  
We got it done...and we were exhausted!  That was some major exercise!  But it felt really good!

    

So have YOU made some awesome winter memories while having a little healthy fun outdoors?  Share your pics here! 

Namaste,
Dorothy

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Resolution Tip #5: Bring it in, Baby! (Indoors, that is!)

Ok, so for those of you who know me, you know I love to be outside.  The sun, the breeze, the fresh air, the birds chirping...you get the idea.  It's just nice to be outside.  

But it's February.  And for some of us, that means...


Image result for winter is coming

OR, more likely, it's already here and it's in full swing.  And as much as I like being outside, getting my exercise on in the cold temps is not my thing.  I just don't like it when my nostril hairs freeze together.  Call me crazy, but to me, it's super gross.  

So what's an aspiring healthy human to do?  

Bring it in, Baby!  

Indoors, that is! You can do a lot of exercise inside. You don't need a lot of space.  You don't need a lot of equipment.  You don't even need to change out of your pajamas!  

You just need yourself...and a little "can do" attitude!  

Wait...you're not a yoga instructor, personal trainer, or cardio master? 

 Image result for clueless exercise meme


OK, so maybe you need an App or a website too.  


Here's a list of my 3 top faves that I use at home when I don't feel like trudging out into the ice and snow:

  •  According to her site, Betty (Bree Argetsinger) is a "C.H.E.K. (Corrective Exercise and High-performance Kinesiology) certified Exercise Coach, a Nationally Certified Structural Integration Practitioner (realignment of the body through manual therapy), an ISSA (International Sports Sciences Association) certified fitness nutrition practitioner, and an all around fitness motivator and champion of personal growth."  
  • Currently, she offers a free, 30-Day Make Fat Cry Challenge which consists of a crazy variety of 15 min daily body weight workouts.  Sometimes it's Tabata, sometimes it's HIIT, sometimes it's a Ladder Workout...but it's always fun!  She provides mods (which I love) and exudes positivity to the max! She also has TONS of free exercise (and nutrition) content on her blog too!  Be careful though...you might get addicted!
Image result for betty rocker

2.  Yoga with Adriene:  https://do.yogawithadriene.com/p/dedicate
  • According to her site, Adriene Mishler "is an actress, writer, international yoga teacher and entrepreneur from Austin, Texas. On a mission to get the tools of yoga into schools and homes, Adriene hosts the YouTube channel Yoga With Adriene, an online community of over 4 million subscribers. Yoga With Adriene provides high quality practices on yoga and mindfulness at no cost to inspire people of all ages, shapes and sizes across the globe."
  • Why do people love her?  'Cuz she's real.  And super sweet.  And she does yoga with her dog. (What's not to love about that?)  She offers TONS of free yoga videos designed for all levels of yogis and they're often tagged for specific purposes--for the hands, for the feet, for insecurity, for runners, for climbers, for shoulders...you name it! 
Image result for adriene mishler

3.  Yoga Journal:  (Website)  https://www.yogajournal.com/video AND         
                            (YouTube)  https://www.youtube.com/user/YogaJournal/featured
  • Yoga Journal offers LOTS of videos with many different styles from Power Yoga to Restorative.  Some videos are geared toward beginners and others towards more advanced yogis, so be sure to pick a video that suits your comfort level.  The featured yogis are the ones you've heard of:  Kathryn Budig, Cyndi Lee, Jason Crandell, Sadie Nardini, Baron Baptiste, etc.  The cool thing is, once you find a teacher you like, you can use the Search tool to find all their videos! 

Image result for yoga journal video imagesImage result for yoga journal images baron baptiste


So those three are my favorites.  If you need help finding your own special workout sites, check out this article by Dave Smith at the Huff Post.  He's got 50 other suggestions for you! https://www.huffpost.com/entry/free-online-workout_b_7722024


  
OK, Friends!  Have fun!

Namaste!
Dorothy

Saturday, January 26, 2019

Resolution Tip #4: Rock Your Inner Boy/Girl Scout and BE PREPARED! (Exercise Edition)

Raise your hand if you've ever promised yourself that... 

"I mean it.  THIS time,
 I'm going to set up an exercise plan and stick to it," 


....and then you quit in a couple of months.


Wow!  Look at all those hands!  

Yup.  I've been there too.  You're not alone.   

Exercise is harrrrd.  You know it's called a "WORKout" for a reason, right?  It's WORK!!



Image result for exercise is hard meme



So there's a million excuses as to why we didn't "stick to it" THIS time, but let's just explore the top 5:

            Excuse #1:  I don't have enough time.

            Excuse #2:  I'm too tired.

            Excuse #3:  My legs (feet, arms, shoulders, back, neck, etc.) hurt.

            Excuse #4:  I'm too old/fat/uncoordinated/embarrassed to workout at the                                         gym.  Besides, it's expensive.

            Excuse #5:  I hate working out alone.  And exercising is boring.



Hey, I'm with ya.  I think I've used ALL of those excuses at one time or another.  But the thing is...exercise is important.  A body in motion stays in motion...a body at rest?  Well, it gets all soft and mushy, it's more easily injured, it has more inflammation, the joints ache, the energy wanes, and we just kinda sit there like a lump.  Blah.  If you want an active future for yourself...you gotta keep your body moving. 

So what about the excuses?  The best way to stomp out your excuses is to prepare for them!  KNOW that they're on the horizon and be prepared to meet them head on!  

So let's break it down!


Image result for if it's important to you you'll find a way meme


Excuse #1:  "I don't have enough time."

We live crazy busy lives--work, kids, commute, errands, taking care of the house, etc. and when time gets tight, exercise is often the first thing to go.  But what if we got creative with our time?  Think we could make it work?
  • Solution #1:  Put exercise on your schedule.  Set an alarm if you're going to exercise first thing in the morning.  See it as part of your day...an immovable appointment.  And remember...it doesn't have to be an hour long thing!  10-15 mins is better than nothing, right?
  •  Solution #2: Did you binge watch Game of Thrones or Stranger Things?  If so, you've got time!  TV time is a great time to sneak in a little exercise!  Squats, push ups, lunges, marching in place, stationary bike, plank, leg lifts, stretching...there's time for all of that!  You just gotta decide to do it!
  • Solution #3:  Want healthy kids?  Exercise is important for them too!  Grab the kiddies and get outside!  Play at the playground, go for a walk, throw the frisbee around, head out for a swim, build a snowman, jump in puddles...there's lots to do outside!  Too cold?  Have a dance party inside, do yoga together, practice karate kicks--who knows?  Your kids can probably come up with something pretty creative if you ask them!  :)
  • Solution #4:  Got little kids?  Pop em in the stroller or strap them to your body and walk them around town!  Got bigger kids who play sports, have dance lessons or music lessons?  While they are doing their thing, you can take that time to walk the ball field, run up and down stairs, pair up with another parent and have a "walk and talk" around the building.  
Image result for game of thrones workout meme



Excuse #2:  "I'm too tired."
  • Solution #1:  Exercise. Yup.  Exercise is the solution to your problem.  Hear me out...  Ever had one of those times when you dragged yourself to the gym even when you were super tired?  Do you remember how you felt when you were done?  Most likely, you were tired in your muscles but more energized overall.  Why?  Exercise increases your blood flow which means that your heart is pumping oxygen to your brain, muscles, and tissues faster. It also promotes the release of neurotransmitters that will make you feel better and give you MORE ENERGY. Even moderate exercise can improve your energy levels!  Don't believe me?  Next time you get out of bed in the morning, do 20 jumping jacks right away.  Bet you feel more energized!  And that's a great way to start your day!
  • Solution #2:  Exercise when you DO have energy.  A lot of people "save" their exercise for the end of the day.  But that's when a lot of us are really tired and we just want to relax.  Next time, try getting your exercise done first thing in the morning.  Start small. Try going to bed 15 minutes earlier and setting your alarm for 15 mins earlier.  Then pop out of bed and do 15 mins of exercise before you start getting ready for your day.  If mornings aren't great, try going for a brisk walk during your lunch break.
Image result for i'm too tired to exercise meme


Excuse #3:  "My legs (feet, arms, shoulders, back, neck, etc.) hurt."
  • Solution #1:  If you've got an injury, check with your doc and see what exercises are ok to do!  Lots of times, you can work around your injury.  If it's a foot injury for example, you could work your upper body, and you could most often do floor exercises or chair supported exercises.  If it's a shoulder issue, you could still go for a brisk walk.  Now, that being said, maybe you have a more encompassing injury (like a back or a neck injury) and in that case, your doc might give you PT to do...PT counts as exercise!  But remember, always follow your doctor's orders!  :)
  • Solution #2:  If you're hurting because you overworked a muscle, then give it a rest.  Vary your exercise--upper body one day, lower body the next.  And think about building rest days or light days into your schedule--maybe boot camp every day isn't a good idea for you!  Have days when you go for a walk or take a gentle yoga class instead of that hardcore class you usually take.  Give your muscles a chance to recover and rebuild.
Image result for exercise is hard meme


Excuse #4:  "I'm too old/fat/uncoordinated/embarrassed to workout at the gym.                               Besides, it's expensive."
  • Solution #1:  Face your fears.  I know.  It's easier said than done. But the thing is, it's just YOU and YOUR MIND standing in your own way!  Just go once. Just go for a little bit of time or for half of a group ex class.  Sign up for beginner classes, gentle classes, or a free demo of how to use the equipment.  Bring a supportive friend who can show you the ropes.  Ask the front desk attendant when the gym is the least crowded and go then...  There are lots of ways to ease into working out at a gym.  You can do this!
  • Solution #2:  So let's say you face your fears.  You go to the gym and let's say it's the WORST experience ever!  Snooty people.  Cruddy facilities.  Classes WAY more hardcore than you need.  Crazy crowded.  And just NOT good.  Welllll...you could always try a different workout facility, right?  Check out your local library, health care center, community center, and YMCA.  Typically, classes offered at these locations are much more beginner friendly. 
  • Solution #3:  Now, about the expense.  A lot of gyms have free trials. Yoga studios and Barre studios often offer reduced rates through Groupon.com or LivingSocial.com.  The Y sometimes offers financial assistance to those who qualify. Community Centers and Recreation Departments usually have inexpensive ways to get your exercise on too!  You could also join Meetup.com where many exercise classes/opportunities are offered for free or at a reduced rate.
  • Solution #4:  So, some people are just introverts (I'm one) or they just don't have money to spend on a gym.  This is perfectly cool!  Exercise at home!  There are TONS of free exercise classes on the internet--any kind of workout you could possibly want.  Plus you don't have to pack a gym bag, you can workout in your jammies, and shower in your own bathroom!   You could also borrow dvd's from your local library or stream video on your TV!  Lots of options for the at-home exerciser!
Image result for dont be afraid of being a beginner meme

Excuse #5:  "I hate working out alone.  And exercising is boring."
  • Solution #1:  Bring a friend or a family member when you workout.  Besides, you're more likely to stick to an exercise routine if you've got someone as dedicated as you who will come with you. 
  • Solution #2:   Join Meetup.com.  Sign up for activities you like and get the bonus of making new friends who enjoy the same activities.
  • Solution #3:  Mix it up.  You don't have to do the same type of workout every day.  Yoga, Bootcamp, Weights, Crossfit, Tabata, Swimming, Tennis, Dancing, Hula Hooping, Skating, Surfing, Skiing, Hiking, Snowshoeing, Slack Lining, Biking, Rowing, Horseback Riding, Frisbee, Soccer, Tennis, Basketball, Tag, Jumprope, Swinging on the Swings ...you get the idea, right?  Exercise doesn't have to be boring.  There are lots of choices!  Have fun with it!  Plus, if you cross train, you activate different muscles and build new brain pathways!  Fun, right?
Image result for energized after a workout meme


OK, so now you are prepared to face all your exercise excuses head on!  Boom!  You will not let anything or anyone derail you from the promises you made to yourself, right?  

YOU ARE IMPORTANT!!  

Now go make your exercise plan, get out there, and kick some booty!

Good luck you guys!  (And have fun!)

Namaste,
Dorothy



Image result for exercise is hard meme

Friday, January 18, 2019

Resolution Tip #3: Rock Your Inner Boy/Girl Scout and BE PREPARED! (Food Edition)

I will be honest with you.  I have not always been successful in achieving my nutrition goals.  Why?  

I was a woman with a million excuses...

"I HAD to do take out...there wasn't any good food in the house."

"I was traveling...you know what airplane food is like!"

"I was at a party...it would have been anti-social to sit there without a drink in my hand!"

"They ordered in at work!  Seriously....There was NOTHING healthy on the table! And I was STARVING!  I HAD to eat four slices of pizza....and a chocolate chip cookie."


Image result for diet excuses

For me, personally, I needed to be brutally honest with myself.  My lack of success wasn't because of lack of time, extenuating circumstances, or lack of a cooperative environment...it was because I didn't prioritize or prepare.  I kept saying my health was important to me, but I never treated it as a true priority when it came to doling out my time and effort. 

So I figured it out (mostly).

We gotta follow the Boy/Girl Scout motto and 
BE PREPARED.

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Ha.  Easier said than done!  

So, how did I eventually go from flying by the seat of my pants to being a good little Girl Scout?  Take a look at my tired old excuses and my new kick-booty, take-responsibility, and be-prepared approach! 

"I HAD to do take out...there wasn't any good food in the house!"
  • Now I make a food plan for the week.  I make a shopping list.  I stick to it...No matter how much chocolate is on sale.
  • My fridge, freezer and cabinets are stocked with healthy fresh food--Stuff I actually like and am interested in.  There's no sense in buying a bunch of kale and just staring at it if you don't like kale!  Buy what you like!
  • I keep veggies and fruit washed and chopped in the fridge for easy access, cooking, and snacking.  And when I know I have a super busy week ahead, I buy veggies that are pre-chopped (or veggies that don't need chopping at all!).
  • Frozen veggies are essential for busy people.  They are super convenient and can be made in a flash.
  • I cook once and eat two or three times.  Leftovers make a fast and easy breakfast or lunch for the next day and if you've got an Instant Pot, Crock Pot, or other big ol' pot you can make large quantities of sauce, stew, rice, quinoa or whatever and stick the extras in the freezer for the next week!  Woot! 
  • Now, even though I like my food quick and easy, I also get bored and crave International foods. So...my spice cabinet is fully stocked so I can make things with an Italian, Asian, Mexican, Indian, or Mediterranean taste profile!



"I was traveling...you know what airplane food is like!" 



I used to say I couldn't be healthy when I was traveling...I literally thought it was impossible. But now...

  • I put nuts, seeds, and unsweetened dried fruits in little snack baggies or re-usable containers so I can grab them and go and always have healthy food on hand.  
  • Hello?  Fruit, anyone?  Apples, bananas, berries...all easy to grab and go.
  • Sometimes I need a little on-the-go protein.  Meat is tricky 'cuz it needs refrigeration.  And though I'm not a fan of processed meats, Chomp Sticks are pretty good in a pinch (they have 'em at Trader Joe's). If you're not a meat eater and you're a bean person...hummus in a "to go" cup with carrots and celery works great too! 

Image result for airplane food



"I was at a party...it would have been anti-social to sit there without a drink in my hand!"

Parties were my Achilles heel.  It always took too much willpower to "be good" and it felt awkward not drinking.  
  • Oh, I like to party as much as the next person, but the logical person inside of me knows that liquid calories add up and once I've had two alcohol-based drinks, I find my lowered inhibition and party-mode attitude lead me straight to the food table and next thing I know, I've pulled up a chair and I'm eating the bowl of chips as if it were a single serving put there just for me.
  • So now, especially if I'm hosting, I drink faux cocktails.  My fave is soda water with muddled lime and mint. In a fancy glass, of course!  This way, I'm drinking something special, others don't feel funny about drinking when I'm not, I don't suck down the extra calories, and I don't have a hangover the next day!  Total win!

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"They ordered in at work!  
Seriously....There was NOTHING healthy on the table! And I was STARVING!  
I HAD to eat four slices of pizza....
and a chocolate chip cookie."

And this was me ALL THE TIME. It was always someone else's fault.  I felt like I was never in control.  I was not making my own choices.
  • First things first...I never let myself get to the point of "STARVING" anymore!  This is where being prepared (and eating healthy, rather than "dieting") is so important!  If I eat my leftovers for breakfast and some healthy snacks during the day, I shouldn't be ravenous enough to go on a mindless feeding frenzy at lunch or dinner. 
  • Secondly, YES!  It sometimes happens that I really do get stuck with NO HEALTHY FOOD OPTIONS!  No matter how much I plan, it still sometimes happens.  So in THAT case...I try to be mindful.  I decide how far off the wagon I want to go and then I ENJOY it to the fullest without guilt or remorse!  I know that tomorrow will be a new day...no downward food spiraling, no throwing in the towel!  I'm going to get right back to nourishing my body to it's fullest so I can achieve what I set out to do--be my healthiest self!

OK, so that's it.  All of my old excuses are GONE thanks to planning and prep!  Being healthy doesn't just happen.  We have to be mindful about it.  We have to plan and be prepared!

You got this, right?  You're gonna go prep and kick some booty, yes?  Yes! 

Next post, we'll explore how Being Prepared can help you be healthy in other ways too!  (It's not all about the food!)

Hugs to you, Friends!  

-dorothy