Blood Sugar Balance, Fab Four Theory, Health and Wellness, Kelly LeVeque, Nutrition, Recipe, Smoothie

Strawberry Basil Smoothie

Ingredients:
1 serving vanilla protein powder
1 tbsp MCT oil
2 tbsp chia seeds
¼ cup diced frozen or fresh strawberries
Handful of spinach
Handful of basil
2 cups unsweetened almond milk

Place all the ingredients in a high-speed blender and blend to the desired consistency. If you use fresh strawberries, add a few ice cubes before blending to cool. If you’re not into strawberries, consider using blueberries, cherries or raspberries! If you’re not into MCT oil, consider an alternate healthy fat, such as 1/4 of an avocado.

This recipe is from Kelly LeVeque’s book, Body Love. A refreshing smoothie as the days warm up and summer approaches. Enjoy!

Blood Sugar Balance, Health and Wellness, Nutrition

Don’t Fear Fat

A close up of healthy ketogenic food

Do you label your food “good” or “bad”?

My overarching goal, from a nutrition standpoint, is to guide, educate and encourage people to develop a healthy relationship with food. I want people to understand that food is a way to fuel your body for all the activities and goals you want to achieve.

Too much of one type of food, such as sugar, foods high in cholesterol or fried foods can have detrimental effects on our health. They can cause dis-ease: inflammation, significant blood sugar variations, mood swings, poor temperature regulation, altered digestion among many other conditions. It’s time to develop a relationship with food with a goal to energize and optimize our health with what we consume – consume to energize.

A lot of people fear fat because, “I don’t want to get fat.” Healthy fat is extremely important to our health. Healthy fat is necessary for brain functioning, hormonal production and balance, and cell development and growth.

A few examples of healthy fats in our diet:

  • Avocado
  • Fatty fish (salmon, trout, mackerel, sardines and herring)
  • Olive oil
  • Coconut and Coconut oil
  • Nuts
  • Chia Seeds
  • Dark Chocolate

How does healthy fat optimize our health:

  • It increases our satiety – feeling nutritiously satisfied for an extended period of time.
  • Reduces fasting insulin levels.
  • Makes us feel calmer and more relaxed – hey, we all need that these days!
  • Slows digestion.
  • Curbs cravings.
  • Maximizes loss of stored body fat – actually HELPS you lose stored fat.
  • Hydrates our cells.
  • Healthy fats are ESSENTIAL to maintaining our health.

Want more nutrition education and guidance – reach out!

Blood Sugar Balance, Fitness, Health and Wellness, Nutrition

Fiber is Fire!

Selection of healthy rich fiber sources vegan food for cooking

Fiber is Fire

Fiber – what do you know about it? My assumption is that you know it makes you uh-hmm, well…poop. And you are 100% correct. Fiber makes you poop! In addition to keeping you regular, fiber is crucial to a healthy mind, body and soul.

Did you know that you carry 39 TRILLION microorganisms in your colon…39 trillion! Did you also know that beyond the wall of your intestine sits 70 percent of your immune system? Did you also know that brain health actually starts in the gut — and that’s because the brain and gut are in constant communication with each other! The gut is a separate nervous system that has been called the “second brain” or the “enteric nervous system.” Crazy enough, 90 percent of serotonin and 50 percent of dopamine (neurotransmitters that play a powerful role in our mood) are actually produced in the gut! There is a tremendous overlap between irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and depressed mood and anxiety! Okay okay… I’m getting excited. Let’s stay focused…

Why Fiber? How can this help with gut and inevitably brain health?

Fiber is considered a complex carbohydrate. Fiber remains unblemished as it passes through your mouth, esophagus, stomach and even fifteen to twenty feet of small intestine so by the time it reaches your colon, it’s the same molecule that went into your mouth. 

We humans lack the ability to process fiber by ourselves, our gut bacteria break down the fiber to produce what may be the most healing nutrient in all of nature – short chain fatty acids! 

There are three main types of short chain fatty acids – acetate, propionate and butyrate. These three work together for the good of your health. Short chain fatty acids first make the colon more acidic which prevents the growth of inflammatory, pathogenic bacteria (the “bad” bacteria) – by suppressing the inflammatory microbes, short chain fatty acids are helping to restore balance. The fiber you consume is feeding the healthy microbes and the microbes are multiplying!

Short chain fatty acids have the following health benefits:

  • repair leaky gut
  • reverse bacterial endotoxemia
  • optimize immune system
  • reduce your risk of developing cancer
  • lower body weight
  • lower total cholesterol
  • lower systolic blood pressure
  • improve learning and memory
  • interfere with the formation of amyloid plaques – one of the hallmarks in the brain of Alzheimers disease

Believe it or not, with all of these benefits of fiber, less than three percent of Americans get even the recommended minimum daily intake. 

If you want fiber, there’s only one way to get it, and I’m not taking Metamucil, fiber one bars or things like that – I’m talking about PLANTS! If you want the benefits listed above – think a DIVERSITY of plants. 

Blood Sugar Balance, Fab Four Theory, Kelly LeVeque, Nutrition, Recipe

Chocolate Coconut Smoothie

Banana almond smoothie with cinnamon and oat flakes and coconut milk in glass jarsChocolate Coconut Smoothie

Ingredients:

  • 1 serving chocolate protein powder
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened coconut yogurt
  • 1-2 tbsp chia seeds or flaxseeds
  • Spinach
  • 2-3 cups unsweetened nut milk
  • Unsweetened shredded coconut, for garnish.

Instructions:

  • Place all the ingredients except the shredded coconut in a high-speed blender and blend to the desired consistency. Garnish with shredded coconut.

This recipe is from Kelly LeVeque’s book, Body Love. She is a sports nutritionist who recommends implementing a healthy fat, fiber, greens and protein with each meal for blood sugar balance. It has been my go-to shake for a few months now. Enjoy!

Blood Sugar Balance, Nutrition, Uncategorized

Maintaining Blood Sugar Levels

 Maintaining Blood Sugar LevelHealthy ketogenic low carb food for balanced diet

I discovered nutritionist, Kelly LeVeque about a year ago and have been doing my best to implement her Fab Four theory with every meal. This theory consists of a protein, fat (healthy) fiber and greens with every meal. Since implementing the Fab Four, I have noticed longer periods of satiety, less cravings, decreased abdominal bloat and discomfort and increased energy and focus. The theory behind Fab Four is about maintaining your blood sugar so your body has time to burn fat. Complete digestion takes 6 hours or more, the idea of implementing a protein, fat, fiber and green with every meal is introducing components to maintain your satiety which will regulate your hormones, reduce blood sugar spikes and dips and allow your body the time it needs to burn fat. The idea is that you can burn fat and lose weight in between meals and during sleep.