Blood Sugar Balance, Body Image, Book Recommendations, Books, Fab Four Theory, Health and Wellness, Kelly LeVeque, Recipe, Smoothie

Pumpkin Pie Smoothie!

Give me ALL the pumpkin!

If you haven’t noticed, I’m a BIG fan of smoothies! Here’s another one of my favs from Kelly LeVeque’s book, Body Love. It really gets me excited for Fall, one of my favorite seasons of the year!

Pumpkin Pie

Ingredients:

1 serving vanilla protein powder
1 tbsp flaxseeds
1 tbsp MCT oil
2 cups unsweetened almond milk
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 cup pure pumpkin puree.

Place all ingredients in a high-speed blender and blend to the desired consistency. **Add ice to make it extra cold.

Book Recommendations, Books, Health and Wellness

September Newsletter

Badassery
It’s been an interesting month and if I’m being honest with you, I am dealing with a bit of a writer’s block. I have spent a lot of this month reflecting on what is going on in our world, my relationships, myself, and how I can advocate for myself and my children. I’d like to share a piece I came across from Brene Brown’s book: Rising Strong.  

“I know, badassery is a strange term, but I couldn’t come up with another one that captures what I mean. When I see people stand fully in their truth, or when I see someone fall down, get back up, and say, “Damn. That really hurt, but this is important to me and I’m going in again” – my gut reaction is, “What a badass.” There are too many people today who instead of feeling hurt are acting out their hurt; instead of acknowledging pain, they’re inflicting pain on others. Rather than risking feeling disappointed, they’re choosing to live disappointed. Emotional stoicism is not badassery. Blustery posturing is not badassery. Swagger is not badassery. Perfection is about the furthest thing in the world from badassery.

To me the real badass is the person who says, “Our family is really hurting. We could use your support.” And the man who tells his son, “It’s okay to be sad. We all get sad. We just need to talk about it.” And the woman who says, “Our team dropped the ball. We need to stop blaming each other and have some tough conversations about what happened so we can fix it and move forward.” People who wade into discomfort and vulnerability and tell the truth about their stories are the real badasses.

Daring is essential to solve the problems in the world that feel intractable: poverty, violence, inequality, trampled civil rights, and a struggling environment, to name a few. But in addition to having people who are willing to show up and be seen, we also need a critical mass of badasses who are willing to dare, fall, feel their way through tough emotion, and rise again. And we need these folks leading, modeling, and shaping culture in every capacity, including as parents, teachers, administrators, leaders, politicians, clergy, creatives, and community organizers.”


My perception of this excerpt from Rising Strong is that it’s not about pretending that everything is “fine”, that I’m “fine”, that this world is “fine”. It’s about owning the pain, the heartache, the worry and using that as fuel for change. It’s about using our voices to fight for what we believe in, no matter what that is. 

Day by day, my voice is getting stronger. Day by day, I am feeling more confident in honoring my emotions, speaking my truths and standing up for what is not in alignment with them. Day by day, I am advocating for what I believe in. I hope that you are using this time to do the same, no matter what you believe in. I don’t care if you’re left or right, vaccine vs. non vaccine, mask vs. no mask – what I care about is that you fight for whatever it is that feels right for you. 

I plan to do the same. And it’s not you against me…it’s you and me both advocating for what we believe in. There’s room for both. There’s room for love. There’s room for collaboration. There’s room to come together instead of separate. 

So as we enter into a new month, I hope you feel empowered to use your voice. You’re meant to be here, at this exact moment. 
Book Recommendations, Books, Health and Wellness, Nutrition, Recipe

Recipe Alert!

Sesame Noodle Bowl

Ingredients:

Sesame Dressing:

1/4 cup tahini paste
2 tbsp warm water
1 tbsp tamari
2 tsp toasted sesame oil
Juice of 1 lime
1/2 tsp minced garlic
1/2 tsp 100% maple syrup
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes (optional)

Tofu:
14 ounces firm or super-firm tofu
Olive oil cooking spray

Sesame Noodle Bowls:
8 ounces soba noodles
2 cups frozen shelled edamame, thawed
2 medium carrots, sliced very thin
2 cups cucumber, diced
2 tbsp sesame seeds, for serving
2 tbsp hemp seeds, for serving 

Instructions:

Make the tofu:
Remove the tofu from the package and wrap it in a clean towel or paper towel. Place it on a plate, then put another plate on top of it. Place a few heavy items like cans or cookbooks on top of the tofu. Allow to sit for 30 minutes, or until most of the water has drained onto the towel. 

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Once the tofu is drained, place it on a cutting board and cut into desired shape. Lightly spray a baking sheet with olive oil and place the tofu on it in a single layer, then spritz with more olive oil to ensure that the tofu is well-coated. 

Bake for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and flip. Return to the oven and bake for 15 more minutes, or until the tofu is golden brown.

Make the dressing: 
Whisk together the tahini, water, tamari, sesame oil, lime juice, garlic, maple syrup, and red pepper flakes until smooth. Set aside.

Make the Bowl:
Cook the soba noodles according to package instructions, then drain and rinse under cold water to stop the cooking process. Return to the pan they were cooked in and toss with half of the prepared sesame sauce.

Divide the noodles among four resealable containers, then top with the edamame, carrots, cucumber, and tofu. Drizzle with the remaining sauce, the sesame seeds, and hemp seeds. Serve cold. 

This recipe is from the book, Fiber Fueled by Dr. Will Bulsiewicz. ENJOY!

Books, Fitness, Health and Wellness, Nutrition, Recipe

Optimizing Your Health With a Focus on Wellness

The Blue Zones are 5 different locations around the world where people live the longest.

Sardinia holds the longest living man. Ikaria, Greece has the world’s lowest rate of dementia. Individuals in Costa Rica reach a healthy age of 90 years old and in Loma Linda, California there’s a group of seventh-day Adventists who live up to a decade longer than other Americans. 

What is it about these five different locations that has people living longer and with less chronic conditions and illness? 

1. They move naturally every 20 minutes or so. Going to a friends house, out to eat or to church is an opportunity to move/walk.
2. Loneliness is not an option – if you don’t show up at a town festival or in the village, people will show up at your door to check on you.
3. The people have a sense of purpose, from childhood to old age. Their sense of purpose is embedded in their community, family and / or the next generation.
4. Food – 90-100% of their diet consists of whole, plant-based fare. Not because it’s a fad, but because fruits, vegetables, tubers, nuts, beans and whole grains are cheap and accessible. 
5. They lead healthy, energetic lives.
6. They consume meats or treats as celebratory foods. 

Let’s take a deeper dive into tips from the The Blue Zones in regards to our nutrition:

  • Use fewer ingredients – less variety may help keep people from overeating and keep the immune system strong.
  • Add cruciferous vegetables – broccoli, cauliflower, and cabbage have been known to protect the heart, stave off cancer and lower oxidative stress. 
  • Beans, beans, beans. – Add them to your diet, they’re a great source of protein, fiber, and complex carbohydrates. Plus, they’re cheap and versatile. 
  • Finish dinners with olive oil.
  • Supplement with fresh herbs and spices – rosemary, oregano, sage, mint, garlic, turmeric and mugwort all possess medicinal values AND add flavor. 
  • Fiber – Grains, greens, nuts and beans feed the eight pounds of bacteria living in our gut. Some of that bacteria produces toxins like choline; others produce compounds that reduce inflammation, regulate our metabolism, and fuel our immune system. The toxin-producing bacteria tend to feed off meat and eggs, while the healthy bacteria favor fiber. 

The cookbook is called The Blue Zones Kitchen by Dan Buettner.

Books, Personal Development

Reading List

What’s on your bookshelf?

Row of old books with colorful covers on pastel blue background. Education concept. Mock up for different ideas. Empty place for text, quote or sayings.

Do you have a reading list for the year? Do you have books that you’ve purchased that are lined up and in the cue to read? What are you currently reading? Is it an easy read to embrace after the holidays and to get through the depths of winter or a book that takes a little more thought and attention?

I’m currently reading, “Awaken the Giant Within,” by Tony Robbins. This book is about taking immediate control of your mental, emotional, physical and financial destiny. It’s about changing your mindset through the questions we ask ourselves, changing our limiting beliefs and adapting new ways that create new pathways and opportunities for success.

One of Tony’s big concepts in this book is: our questions determine our thoughts. “If you ask a terrible question, you’ll get a terrible answer. Your mental computer is ever ready to serve you, and whatever questions you give it, it will surely come up with an answer.”

If you consistently ask yourself, “why can’t I succeed?” Your mind will consistently come up with an answer about why you can’t succeed. If you shift the question to, “how can I use this result as momentum to move forward?” Your mind will come up with an answer. The difference between the answers is one that is limiting versus one that presents opportunity.

“Quality questions create quality life.” What sort of questions are you consistently asking yourself? Change your questions and change your life.

I recommend adding this book to your reading list, it can be life changing if you allow it.

Happy reading!