Tag Archives: vegetarian

Sick Season

Oh, it’s that time of year again. Sick season! 

It starts to get cold outside. Everyone in the office or at school is suddenly coughing. Some losing their voices. The person sitting next to you has a stock pile of dirty tissues. You think to yourself, “Yup, it’s that time of year. I’m gonna get sick.”

Well frankly rather than call this sick season, I would prefer to call it, “It’s getting cold, unhealthy, forget-to-take-care-of-yourself season.”

I know, we all think that it’s just inevitable. All we can do is wash our hands as much as possible and stay away from the sick people.

Or is it?

Hardly. Colds and flus can be prevented by simply amping up your immune system.  When it gets cold, your body’s immune system is automatically working harder simply to keep your body temperature up. Then to add to that, we have holiday season. This is why I call it the unhealthy, forget-to-take-care-of-yourself season.  You’re eating rich meaty, cheesy foods, followed up by holiday cookies and other desserts. You’re just over-eating in general. Everyone has candy on their desk. You’re drinking more coffee and hot chocolate but less water. Your partying with friends, family, and coworkers. Staying up late, waking up early. The holiday season is everything that will suppress your immune system.

Before you reach for the Meds

Remember your body is a freakin’ genius! You are the dumb one wrecking it. (Sorry but it’s true.) Think about it. If you’re sneezing and have a runny nose, you’re body is obviously trying to get rid of something in your body. Same thing goes for coughing, or any other types of  “get rid of process.”  When you take medicine to stop the runny nose or suppress the cough, you are actually prolonging your sickness, because now the part of your body trying to get rid of this crap is paralyzed by the medicine and has to find some other way to “fix” you.

Now I understand, taking medicine to stop your runny nose is certainly convenient, but it isn’t fixing the problem.  So rather, we should be asking ourselves, “How can I help my body fight this crap off?” One of the first things that comes to most peoples mind is Vitamin C.  I agree one hundred percent! BUT, don’t go running for the orange juice. I said DO NOT. Orange juice has wayyy too much sugar in it. Sugar will hurt your immune system more than the little bit of Vitamin C will help. What you need is REAL FOOD packed with Vitamin C… and A… and E… and anti oxidants… and well I could go on and on with other phytochemicals, but I think you get the picture. Basically eat tons of fruits and vegetables people! (IE eat the orange not the fake sugar juice in the store.)

So I actually fell into the Holiday Season, terrible habits, forget to be healthy and take care of yourself trap, and I started getting sick.  While I hate admitting this, lucky for you I can share with you what I did to beat that crap in 24 hours.

1. Plain hot water. No honey, no lemon, no tea, jut plain hot water. This sounds so weird, I know. I learned this from John Douillard. It’s an ayurvedic practice.  I could try to explain it, but its difficult. Just trust me and John Douillard here. Sip plain hot water as often as possible throughout the day.

2. Fresh Juice.  I found everything in my kitchen that was orange, yellow or just really good for me and loaded it into my juicer.  I used, 3 handfuls of kale pieces, 2 oranges, 3 carrots, 1 apple, 1/3 of a sweet potato. Then squeeze a lemon wedge into the juice.  I drank 2 large glasses of this. One for breakfast. One for dinner. And oh yea, it’s delish!

3. Sweet Potato Pablano Soup.  This is Dr.Andrew Weil’s recipe and oh my was it good. I scarfed like 4 bowls down for dinner. It was like my body couldn’t get enough! Get the recipe here.

Be Healthy, be sick-free, be happy, and be hot this holiday season!

Merry Christmas from me and these guys!

Don’t forget to share with me!

What do you do when you get sick?

Do you have any home remedies you swear by?

Advertisements

Breast Cancer Awareness< Breast Cancer Prevention

Breast Cancer Awareness Month 

Is Among Us   

However, I would like to change it to…

Breast Cancer Prevention Month

Let’s think about this here. We are all AWARE of breast cancer. We are all AWARE of cancer in general.  So why the heck don’t we hear about how to PREVENT cancer. Isn’t that really what all this money we’re spending on pink ribbons should be going to?! I think so!  

What do you think of when you think of a cancer patient?  Do you EVER want to be a cancer patient? Do you ever want to go through with the kind of tormenting treatment that they suffer through? I think we all answer the same to these questions. NO!

We all want to live a cancer FREE life. We don’t ever want to have to go through treatment. We don’t want to go through that tormenting time where you wonder if you’ll even survive! No.  Yet all that money we donate never comes back to share with us how to avoid this (cancer)  in  life.

But there’s NOTHING we can do to prevent it

WRONG. There are definite ways to prevent cancer! Let’s get a few things straight.

1. Why don’t we know about this? Because no one makes money by preventing cancer, so no one spends money to spread the word and make this knowledge known. Also, some of what I will share is quite frankly controversial, because some big companies and lobbies have spent a lot of money to make you and everyone you know think otherwise.

2.  It’s hereditary. It’s genetics. This conclusion is more often used when  someone doesn’t know how to explain something, so they just assume it must be genetics. Based on science, cancer is only 2% genetic. Meaning if it is IN YOUR GENES and was passed on to you, there is only a 2% chance that THAT alone will give you cancer. 2%!!!!! That means there’s a 98% chance you won’t get cancer, unless an environment is created in your body for the cancer to grow and become CANCER.

3. Cancer grows in acidic environments. So if you keep your body from becoming acidic, you prevent cancer growth! Whoa! No really though, it’s that simple.   

4. What you eat MATTERS… A LOT! Sugar, highly processed foods, dairy products, and meats are your ACID forming foods.  When I watch what the typical person eats, it breaks my heart. I KNOW they’ll have a disease one day if they keep up their eating habits. Sausage, egg, and cheese sandwich for breakfast, turkey sandwich for lunch, and chicken and rice-a-roni for dinner. There wasn’t one non acid-forming food in that spread. Not one. That is a toxic diet!

5. GREENS, GREENS, & MORE GREENS.  There was no better food ever created than green vegetables. Kale, spinach, collards, arugula, broccoli, zucchini, asparagus and this list goes on!  Food that comes from a plant is a god-given food. It is food from the sun. It is food from the earth. It is ALKALINE-FORMING food. It is cancer-preventing food. It is disease preventing food. It is life saving food.  Eat some!

6.  Say no to dairy and meat (most of the time). This is the part no body want to hear. But I’m here to say it.  Studies have showed how eating 20% or more animal protein in the diet allows and speeds cancer growth. Eating less than 10% will not allow ANY cancer growth.  The same study done using plant instead of animal protein saw 0% cancer growth no matter how much protein was consumed. Think about this. ANIMAL PROTEIN CAUSES CANCER GROWTH! WHAT??? Yes, that is exactly what I just said. If you want to read more about it, check out The China Study by Dr. Colin T. Campbell.  (NOTE: this study was done on those predisposed to cancer and carried it genetically)

Dear friends, what have you learned about preventing Cancer, or any disease for that matter?  Eat a lot of veggies! And fruits and anything that is plant-based! It’s all alkaline-forming/cancer preventing. Avoid too much dairy and meats. I’m not saying you need to become vegetarian or vegan to necessarily prevent cancer or disease. It’s may be more of a “sure thing” that way, but you really just want to make sure that only 10% or less comes from those products.

None of us are perfect. But surely this is something to be thinking about when making your next food choice, because frankly FOOD MATTERS, a lot!

Share with me!

What have you learned?

Is this new to you or have you heard this before?

What do you want to implement right away?

It’s time to go be a healthy, happy, hot, and cancer-free babe!

Peace, love, and blessings

Vegan Dream Restaurant

I cannot even begin to describe how much I fell in love with Silly’s! Off the beaten path in Portland, Maine, hides the gem of a restaurant, Silly’s.  As I walk to the back patio, I oggle at the decor made from recycled junk.  Recycled doors painted in bright colors hinged together to make one side of the fence. Even an old toilet with flowers planted in it. Each table had a hot pink square lunch box toting its Silly name.

I’m not sure my uncle would appreciate being in this particular picture, so he’s blurred out! ha!

Now, let me tell you, my experience when ordering food at restaurants is usually something like this.  Is there a veggie burger? What are the side dishes? And is there a vegetarian section of the menu? If there is a Veggie section, it usually has 6 options tops! Basically it’s never hard for me to decide what I want to eat.

At Silly’s? Oh no! I’ve never wanted to order so many things off one menu in my life. Vegan garlic bread, bruschetta, hummus plate, vegan pizza, burgers, mac and cheese, falafel, vegan desserts too! I was sooo lost. I finally just asked what’s the most popular vegan item and went with that! And boy oh boy, it was better than I could have hoped!

I got the last one. The Zombie Burger.

House made veggie burgers? Made with black bean, sweet and white potato, and quinoa! Holy cow. (Minus the actual cow)

This thing was HUGE! The spicy sauce on here was so good!! Everything about this was delicious! Messy, but delicious.  I cannot wait to try and recreate this bad boy!  (I asked how to make the sauce, sounds super easy, so be ready to find it on here soon!)  I loved the texture of the veggie burger! They’re known for being like cardboard sometimes. Oh no! Not this one my friends!

If you ever find yourself in Portland, Maine, you MUST stop by Silly’s! You will find yourself full of healthy, happy, and hot goodness!

What’s your favorite vegan restaurant? 

Where is it?

Have you ever made your own veggie burgers?

 

The Traveling Vegetarian

You may have noticed the scarcity in my post over the past couple weeks.  Well dear friends I do have a good excuse for my

absence. I have been traveling for quite some

time now.  When my brother and really good friend moved out to the east coast, it seemed like only the right time to make the trip.  So here I am in Freeport, Maine taking in this beautiful scenery and enjoying the calm laid back life-style.

I started  my trip in Newark, Delaware where my brother moved for his job. This adorable college town made me go yippy-skippy with all it’s vegetarian menu options.  I was astounded.  Not even the best choices back in Indiana even come close to what I had discovered in this town. Home Grown Cafe is a local restaurant that makes all their dishes from local produce.  Almost everything on the menu had a star next to it saying it could be made vegetarian AND a double star for vegan.  Holy cow, a restaurant that actual caters to us plant-eaters. I was falling head over heels in love.

I would also like to take a moment to celebrate one of the most wonderful foods I discovered so far on this trip. Chili Mashed.  I found this lovely side dish at another local restaurant in Newark, Santa Fe Mexican Grill.  If you haven’t figured this out yet, I love my mashed potatoes. I don’t know if it’s an Indiana thing, a Midwest thing, I don’t know, but I do love mashed potatoes.  These Chili Mashed weren’t just your ordinary mashed potatoes. I mean what Mexican restaurant serves mashed potatoes anyway?!These things were mashed and infused with a spicy chili. Nothing super hot, just velvety potatoes with a little kick. A little kick that had me coming back the next day just for this particular treat.  My taste buds were in heaven yet again! I cannot wait to try to recreate these bad boys when I get home!

(I wish I had a picture of these Chili Mashed Potatoes, the restaurant was just too dark)

Next stop Philadelphia

My dear brother probably found the one thing that would get me excited more than all this vegetarian food and culture, a Sublime concert! While there’s nothing healthy about that, it certainly made me one happy chick!

(I made it all the way to the 2nd row. I was stoked)

While in Philly, after the concert, a lost debit card, and a little too much beer,  my brother showed me the ultimate vegan late-night food. A tomatoe pie topped with arugula!  While first making a stop by the greatest bar I discovered which was hosting a mustache party and claims to be Home of the Pickleback, we then made it to some pizza joint which I can’t recall ha! For this!

      

Right: Tomato pie with arugula.  Left: Sign in the bar claiming home of the pickleback, which is a shot of Jameson followed by pickle juice for a chaser. Delish!

I should make a quick shout out, before moving on, to my brother, Kodi. Thank you for being the greatest travel/eating buddy I could imagine.  For you veggies and vegans, I highly recommend finding another like you.  It makes eating on vacation a luxury rather than gluttony.

Now for my extremely long trip to Maine

Let’s start off by explaining exactly what this entails.  At 9am I took a train from Wilmington, Delaware to Philadelphia.  Then waited 3 hours for a bus from Philly to New York City. Then I had to walk nearly 2 miles to a different bus stop in NYC to take a bus to Boston.  Where I waited for an hour for a bus that I was pretty sure wasn’t coming, so bought a last minute ticket with a different bus company to Portland, Maine, where my uncle picked me up at 12:10am. There will be a post on this particular day that I will call Fear and Loathing.

Anyway, I really didn’t leave the bus stations in Philly or Boston for fear of missing my bus or getting lost.   However, in NYC I had no choice but to do some exploring (finding the next station).  I don’t stray too far from the route my GPS has planned out for me, but I walk by a little shop on the corner that says Juices and Smoothies on the outside.  I’m interested. I walk in, and they do indeed have green juices and fruit smoothies, plus a salad bar and a sandwich station. All look delicious, but I’m so dang excited that I can actually order a REAL smoothie!  Not some fake sugar crap blended with some fake fruit for some fake ass smoothie. Pardon my language, but that’s how I genuinely feel. So, I create my own. My favorite. Banana, pineapple, spinach, orange, and blueberries. Gosh dang it, I couldn’t keep the glee of my face. I had gone without fresh juice or a smoothie for 7 days until then!

Now I had one more mission with my short time in NYC.  I wanted to answer THE question. Which is better Chicago style pizza or NY style pizza?  So I sit in this little juice shop, a gentleman sits down next to me and I’m thinking he’s got to know where I can find some good NY pizza. He’s got to. He’s got the accent. Haha. I work up my nerve half way through my smoothie. He says in his NY accent, “Ohh yea, 2 blocks up here, it’ll be on your left. Big sign says #12 pizza in New York.” I smile excited that it’s on my way so I won’t have to get lost in this gigantic city. I make my way up the street, eyes peeled for a sign boasting good pizza. I eventually see one.  Though, I’m not so sure it was the one he was telling me about, but I’m too fearful of getting lost and missing my bus.  So I duck my way into this pizza joint. Pizzas line the counter. I look at all my options.  I consider the veggie pizza and decide that just a plain piece of cheese pizza will probably give me the best means to decide, Chicago or NY?  I get this beautiful, huge piece of cheese pizza. Thin crust, but not too thin, cheese melted evenly across the whole thing. I hold up this masterpiece nearly above my head so I can take a first bite and I know the answer.  A slightly sweet tomato sauce, goey cheese, perfectly fired crust.  New York style pizza takes the cake… or pie?!

Once I hit Maine, I was so darn tired.  I spent 13 hours that day, sitting, waiting, walking, going from trains to buses after buses. In my head though, there was one thing I knew I couldn’t wait for… to cook my own meal!  That next morning despite having gone to bed late, the sun woke me up at 8am, and I scooted by butt to the kitchen.  I scoured the cabinets. I had one thing on my mind. Potatoes. I wanted MY homefries for breakfast and what do you know! I found them. I cooked my own food for the first time in what felt like a month, and it was pure delight. 🙂

  

 

Left: MY home fries. Made with red potatoes, yellow bell pepper, and shitake mushrooms sprinkleds with salt, pepper, and garlic powder! (Though at home I use fresh garlic)

Right: The street my brother lives on in Newark, Delaware. That’s him to the left.

Wilmington, Delaware. This is the city my brother works in. It was full of these adorable quaint little buildings. I wish I had gotten to spend some more time here. 😦

Cheers to more traveling! I’ll be hitting Boston soon 🙂

PS whoever said you can’t be healthy, happy, and hot while traveling is seriously misinformed!

Enough With the Protein Concern

As a vegetarian, the one thing you can be sure of is that someone, somewhere, likely more often than you’d like will ask you, “Where do you get your protein from?”  And as the educated vegetarian you are, you sigh, and silently ask yourself why people are so ignorant about food and nutrition, but then smile and respond kindly, “You know I get that question all the time, but I get it from nuts, legumes, beans, grains, veggies, and my favorite quinoa!”

Actually I didn’t always respond so kindly.  I used to be very defensive about my way of eating and very annoyed by how little people know about food and nutrition.

Now please understand that my annoyance is because I am so passionate about getting people healthy and I KNOW that the number one answer for 90% of health concerns out there is to fix what you’re eating. For me, becoming vegetarian(vegan at the time) fixed all my health concerns. Really though, it’s simply adding “real” food into your life: fruits, veggies, whole grains, nuts, seeds, beans, etc. and getting rid of the “fake” foods. Think anything in a box, can, or package: swiss cake rolls, hot dogs, lunchables, ravioli, Campbell’s soup, macaroni and cheese, etc. Becoming vegetarian or vegan just demands this switch from “fake” food to “real” food.

Now for this protein concern.

Let’s start with the basics here. If you are eating a 2000 calorie diet (you do not need to be counting calories by the way, but that is a whole other can of worms to talk about) you need 10-15% of those from protein.  Ok, so that’s 50-65 grams of protein each day. Seems like a lot right?

Not hardly! My vegetarian breakfast this morning had nearly 30 grams of protein in it! More than half of what I need for a whole day and that’s without bacon, sausage, ham, or any other kind of meat! And let’s be honest I’m a 5 ft tall girl. I’m sure I don’t need 2000 calories a day or 50 grams of protein.  I personally only need about 40 grams. I’m basically set for the day!

If I go back to my meat-eating days, my breakfast would have been an egg, ham, and cheese sandwich.  Follow that up with a turkey sandwich for lunch with chips and chicken breast for dinner with some rice-a-roni and broccoli and cheese.  That’s nearly 75 grams of protein. Almost double what a teenage girl my size should eat.  And let’s not even look at the lack of fruits and vegetables.

Ok, actually that’s exactly what I intend to do.  Why all the protein fuss? Why?! For the average American, that is the last thing they should worry about.  Now if you lived in a 3rd world country, protein should probably be a concern. However, that’s not the case here.  If you’re eating meat or cheese based food at all your meals that’s 50-70 grams easy.  Then we’ve got people drinking 1-3 protein shakes with it. That’s more than 100 grams of protein, but where are all the fruits and veggies?

So what’s the big deal?  Too much of a good thing? Yes, that’s what I’m saying. Eating excess protein causes digestive issues.  When your digestive system doesn’t work properly you store fat.  Not to mention the research on animal protein and cancer growth is a little scary. (Check out The China Study) You could be a work-out machine, chugging down protein shakes and eating a shload of animal protein AND actually getting fatter, sicker and still building muscles at the same time!

What’s the alternative?  Stop worrying about protein consumption. You’re getting enough. Really! Start worrying about getting enough veggies and fruits and other plant foods. Yes, plant-based is always my answer. That doesn’t mean you need to go vegetarian, but there are so many plant-based protein sources out there. What’s great is they’re also packed with the vitamins and minerals you find in fruits and veggies (because they’re plants too!).

Examples. Quinoa. Nut butters like peanut, almond, or hazelnut.  Almond or soy milk.  Nuts and seeds, especially hemp seeds.  Two slices of whole grain bread have 10 grams of protein.  Beans. Make a bean and rice burrito and get 17 grams there.  So many bean options, like hummus. YUM! 1 cup of cooked spinach equals 13 grams, but less than 100 calories. Seriously, there are so many plant sources of protein!!!!!

Try this! Instead of the old-fashion whey protein powder in the can (yes, whey is an animal protein) put a banana, a big scoop of peanut (or other nut) butter, some flax or hemp seeds, a handful of spinach or kale leaves, some cooked oats, almond milk, and some berries in a blender.  This will make a protein packed smoothie using REAL foods instead of some powder in a can! 🙂

It’s vegetarian. It’s vegan. It’s good for you. In fact it will fight off half the diseases out there and help you build muscle! Tell me that won’t make one happy, healthy, and hot… chick, dude, grandma, whoever?!

So, Enough with the protein concern!

What are your favorite plant-based sources of protein?

Any good protein-packed smoothies to share?

Lazy Cooking

I love cooking… most days.  Some days, the last thing I want to do is prepare a freakin’ meal.  I’m sure you’ve been there, or maybe you’re there most days. Hey, totally get it.  But let’s be honest, whatever you’re thinking about throwing in the microwave is just not good for you. Microwavable foods may be the worst thing we’ve ever created to eat, so just hold that thought…

Be prepared, this is easy!

All you need is a knife and some tin foil… and your oven… or grill.

My mom used to do this with potatoes. Well you can do it with any veggie out there.  Don’t want to do any chopping? Hey, grab a bag of the mixed frozen veggies, or pre-cut ones from the store. I won’t tell.

Take your cut up veggies and lay them on decent sized piece of tin foil.

Add Extra Virgin Olive Oil, some sea salt and fresh ground pepper.

Seriously that’s all you need.

If you’re feeling fiesty, add garlic or lemon, or whatever is looking good in your spice cabinet. Cumin! Curry! Cayenne! Whatever, it’s  your dinner!

Now to finish this.  Lift the two sides of foil together and wrap it. Then wrap the ends in and you’ve got a foil packet.

Put it in the oven at 400 degrees for 30 minutes.  Depending on what kind of veggies you’re cooking this may take a  little less or a little more time in the oven.

I did this with potatoes a couple times last week! Got great reviews from my friends!

Sweet potatoes and potatoes is my favorite mix!

Asparagus works great!

Or a whole mix of your favorites! Broccoli, cauliflour, carrots, onions, peppers, take your pick!

No dirty dishes! Just dump it on your plate and enjoy!

Now go be lazy, healthy, happy and hot!

Seriously Refreshing

Sometimes we have a little too much fun.  Well… sometimes I have a little too much fun.  There’s nothing that says you can’t be healthy, happy, hot and fun!

Anyways after some not-so-good food choices and a few extra drinks with my friends, I just don’t want anything to eat or drink. It all sounds heavy and just not happening. That’s when I run to my juicer!  Because let’s be honest even smoothies sometimes are just too heavy after a late night.

This is a fabulously refreshing, light drink packed with good -for-you stuff that will kick start your body back to healthy, happy, and hot!

You do need a juicer for this! And if you don’t have one, it is so worth the investment! I’m in love with mine.

What You Need

Whole cucumber with the ends cut off.  A green apple cut into chunks.  A peeled lime. Ice and water.

Run the cucumber, apple and lime through the juicer. Then add plenty of ice and about 4 oz of water to the juice. Stir it up…

And done!

Get ready to feel alive again!

Wait! There’s more!

Why does this baby work so well you ask?

Cucumbers are super hydrating.  They’re 96% water, plus packed with vitamins A, B, and C, not to mention the other minerals hiding in there.  Because of all the fiber and water in these babies, they work magic when it comes to driving out toxins in your body. Ya know, the crappy food and bar drinks!  A little added bonus to cucumber juice, beautiful skin! So don’t just sip this when you’ve wreaked havoc on your body, treat yourself to some beautiful skin too!

Back up that cucumber with a lime and goodbye crappy day.  Limes are very acidic, like you didn’t already know that, but the high acidity cleans out toxins in your digestive tracts. Kind of like scrubbing the floors in your kitchen.  But it’s also packed with potassium (who knew?!) which will clean out the toxins in your kidneys and bladder!

As for that apple, it’s mostly because I think it makes it taste better! But we all know an apple a day keeps the doctor away. That’s good enough for me for this one!

Time to get refreshed!  I think I might just go make another one 🙂

Ciao!

Meet your Meat: Hard Question #2

I’ve been a vegetarian for more than 4 years now. I’ve never once since the day I gave it up been tempted to eat meat, ever. This is how I know its the right decision for me.

I made my decision to stop eating meat after reading a book, Skinny Bitch, which exploited the health hazards of eating an animal-based diet. This was my reason for dropping meat. It was completely out of self-interest.

However, I have never been so happy to say I’ve been living meat free as much as I was the day I saw this.

Those baby pigs thrown on the floor will haunt me forever.

I’m not asking anyone to be vegetarian, but I will say I think it’s important to see this. I think its important to be informed. I think its important that if you choose to eat meat that you know what you’re contributing to. Or you should know what to buy so you’re not contributing to this.

I have a hard time believing as much as you may love meat or cheese or milk, that you yourself would be able to do, watch, or contribute personally to this process.

I know most people don’t want to know this. They want to go about  their ways, looking the other way. Well I’m sorry, but that’s not ok. It’s just not ok.

This isn’t healthy.

This isn’t happy.

And this is not hot.

Coconut Rice Pilaf And a Mango Salsa To Die For

I often get stuck in what I call a flavor rut.  I can make so many things but everything seems to blend together after a while and start to have similar taste.  I love cilantro. I started putting cilantro in everything.  I fall in love with the acidity in pickles. I add pickles to every sandwich I eat. And so on and so on.

I was very very delightfully surprised by the wonderful new flavors in this recipe. New for me that is. And thus, very excited to share with you 🙂

I got the basis for this recipe from Emeril Lagasse. Not ever did I think I would find something even close to vegetarian from dear Emeril and to be honest the entire recipe was for a grouper dinner, but the rice and salsa were sooooo good. I can’t get over it. I think I dreamed about this rice and have been craving it ever since I made it last Wednesday!

Coconut Rice Pilaf

2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1/2 cup chopped yellow onion

1/2 cup chopped orange bell pepper (you could use red or yellow)

3 cloves garlic, minced in a garlic press

1 cup brown rice

1 1/2 cups vegetable stock

1/2 cup coconut milk

salt and pepper to taste

Heat the oil in a sauce pan over medium-high heat. Add the onion, bell pepper, and garlic.  Cook while stirring for about 2 minutes. Add the rice and stir so it’s coated in the oil and cook for just 1 minute.  Then add the vegetable stock, coconut milk and salt and pepper.  Bring to a boil. Then reduce heat to a simmer.  Cook covered for 50 to 60 minutes.

Note: You want to soak the brown rice in some water before you cook it so that way it isn’t super chewy. Just a couple minutes makes a big difference. 

One of the very nicest things about life is the way we must regularly stop whatever it is we are doing and devote our attention to eating.  ~Luciano Pavarotti and William Wright, Pavarotti, My Own Story

Mango Salsa

1/2 a ripe mango, peeled, seeded and diced

1/4 cup poblano pepper, finely chopped

1/4 cup red bell pepper, finely chopped

1/4 cup red onion, finely chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced in a garlic press

1 Tbsp rice vinegar

1 Tbsp fresh cilantro leaves, minced

salt to taste

In a bowl, combine the mango, poblano, bell pepper, onion, and garlic. Stir it up. Then add the vinegar, cilantro, and some salt. Stir again.  Add more salt to your taste if needed. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving.

To make this a meal, take an avocado and smash it up and add a little salt and lime juice to it.  Then plate the rice and top it with the avocado and mango salsa.  Oh man is it delightful!

Well ta ta for now!

Go enjoy this yummy healthy meal! You’ll be one happy and hot chick!

Looking back: 30 Day Challenge and Loving your Body

With every diet there is an equal and opposite binge. 

I’m reminded of this as I was finishing up my 30 Day Challenge. It pains me to tell you…that I ate an egg sandwich, mac and cheese, and pizza all in the same day. The day it was over.

It’s been a long time since I’ve given myself any sorts of restrictions. I was reminded why. Feeling deprived is part of restricting foods. Feeling deprived when eating brings out emotions that leave you needy. Feeling needy will lead to emotional eating and bingeing.  Emotional eating and bingeing will make you feel ashamed or guilty.

None of these emotions should happen when we’re eating. Eating is about nourishing our selves. It’s about feeding and caring for our bodies in a loving way. If you think of your body as your temple or for an easier analogy, a child. If your body is your child that you love, adore, and want to nurture with all your heart… would you deprive it? Would you leave it needy? Emotional? Wanting?

No, you nurture it. You love it. You care for it. You treat it to the things it desires.

When I eat. I know that what I feed my body gives it nourishment. It gives it love.  It gives it energy.  I don’t feed myself crappy nutrientless foods because I want to care for my body. And when I eat a slice of pizza (because pizza always gets me) I treat myself to it.  Again, because I love my body as if it were my child.  It is my temple and that is how I treat it.

The 30 Day Challenge actually got in the way of this wonderful relationship I’ve been having with food and my body.  So looking back I’m not sure I would ever recommend someone try a restrictive, eliminating diet (for lack of better word) for more than 14 days.

As far as going vegan. I am all for it. Plant-based eating is by far the healthiest way of eating.  If you read my about page, I say that I choose not to call myself vegan because life gets in the way.  Going to any kind of party or visiting family or whatever, where I’m from the chances of finding a vegan anything is slim.  I would rather not have to agonize over these inconveniences and just enjoy the company I’m with. I believe that it’s a healthier decision than the deprivation and scrutiny.

As for the salad challenge I was never a salad fan. I’m still not a salad fan. I got very creative. Salad on bread.  Salad in a tortilla.  Chinese sautéed salad (aka stir fry) haha so I may have failed that one but hey I don’t eat food I don’t want to eat.

And smoothies… piece of cake. I’m addicted like people are to coffee. This was not a challenge.

Back to the real issue at hand….

How is your relationship with food and your body? Do you treat it with hate and resentment? Are you constantly restricting it? 

Or do you treat it with unconditional love? Do you care for it? Do you forgive it? Are you kind to it?

If you’re wondering how do you go without restriction? Read This.