How to Avoid Overeating This Christmas

Hello Lovely :)

It’s a rainy Wednesday on my side of the world, but I am enjoying it none the less. I’m finishing off a little protein and some pre-workout pretzels (cause DIETS don’t jive with me)

on-a-diet A little perspective helps ;)

As I’m doing my daily thing, I am reminded of the plague that can entrench all of us this time of year: overeating. It seems to be the bane of our existence on this side of the world (and in other well developed countries), and I get the HOW-TO question with every major holiday.

So, as an early Christmas present to YOU I present my top tips to avoid overeating:

1. Stop overdoing. This may seem odd, but most of our overeating comes from a severely packed schedule. We over commit, rush ourselves and our families from place to place, and leave precious little time for anything other than shopping, errands, cards and wrapping. In my personal opinion that very thing can skew our perception of Christmas altogether and leave us empty and wanting. Now, we are hungry, tired, emotionally drawn out and vulnerable to poor food decisions. The FIX: monitor your time and give yourself permission to not do EVERYTHING. My friend Pamela wrote a fantastic article to help you out here.

stress-free-christmas

2. Make some time to MOVE…..but don’t set crazy expectations. Getting 30 minutes of movement in each day will help to lower cortisol, level blood sugar and improve your outlook on life BUT it needs to be something you enjoy and something that makes you feel good. If your particular brand of workout is more like punishment, then your stress hormones will actually shift into overdrive and you’ll be more likely to over consume the sweets.

3. Realize some treats are OK and expected. Don’t take a one way trip to overindulgence by setting the NO SUGAR standard for the Christmas season. Be realistic and know that there are some treats that you will allow yourself to ENJOY <<<<<<<< the key word there. No guilt, no stress, no punishment.

harry potter sugar Don’t be that person…….

4. Make some alternatives. If you’re in the market for baking goodies or making treats this Christmas, try creating healthier version of the same thing. I adore Lori Harder and she has some awesome Holiday menu items that keep the flavor but in a healthier version. This way you can indulge and enjoy, guilt free.

lori harder

5. Try a little damage control up front. My personal favorite tips are to make sure you get enough protein in the tank, so focus on the turkey OR consider having a whole foods protein shake before a party or get together. Also, I love starting each day with a super simple green shake that packs a serious nutritional punch. I take 8 oz coconut water, 2 oz aloe, a couple handfuls of mixed greens, 1/2 a lemon (juice), 1/2 cucumber and a touch of honey. This sets you up for success first thing.

6. Final thing here, so hang with me! Try to avoid an ONGOING intake of trigger foods. The best way to do this is to not allow it in the house OR use my personal fave and don’t open the bag until Christmas! Treats are cool, but mindless eating doesn’t help anybody. Sugar tends to trigger cravings for more sugar, so try to plan ahead when you know you will indulge.  A great way to squash the sugar bug is with herbal teas. You can try any variety you like, but I prefer peppermint or chocolate hazelnut tea to give my sweet tooth a break.

Christmas sweet tooth

With those tips you should be able to enjoy your Christmas festivities without the ever looming guilt some carry around this time of year. Food should NEVER have that effect on you. Remember, there’s nothing you can do in one day, one week, or even a season that can derail you for good.

From our family to yours, Merry Christmas!!!!!

Michelle

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National Nutrition Month: The intro into the bare basics of nutrition

Need more help?

Check out the NUTRITION TAB for information on Nutrition Boot Camp and Nutrition Counseling.

Top 10 Nutrition Lies That STOP You from Losing Weight: Part 2

Welcome back as we finish out this segment on nutrition lies that STOP you from reaching your weight loss goals. Remember, if you’ve fallen for some of these lies there is still hope! It’s not your fault, it’s just good marketing :)

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6. Heart healthy whole wheat is for EVERYBODY.

Ask your best friend about that. Now, I in NO WAY want to perpetuate this gluten-free cycle we have been running around with just to lose weight, SO we’re going to discuss good old-fashioned facts.

Gluten is quickly catching up to dairy (lactose) in the areas of sensitivity and allergies.

Whole wheat is the largest source of gluten.

Signs of gluten sensitivity are CHRONIC digestive issues, abdominal pain, extreme fatigue, chronic bloating (ahem, weight gain and bloating are 2 very different things), constipation, diarrhea, etc.

Best option to find out if you have a gluten sensitivity: YOUR DOCTOR! Don’t go gluten-free until your doctor says this is your only option. Whole wheat settles well with over 85% of the population and helps keep cholesterol in check as well as provide a preferred source of energy. Gluten does not make you fat or cause weight gain….stop trying that excuse.

Realize that what works for your friends will most likely not work for you, so pay attention to your body. Wheat products, just like EVERYTHING else, require moderation.

7. Meat is BAD.

This is crazy. Why? We are steadily blaming new problems on old foods! Go tell your great-grandfather (the one that lived to be 100+ and ate bacon and eggs for breakfast every morning) that meat is the enemy and the reason why you can’t lose weight. Let me know how that conversation goes for you. The PROBLEM is our butts have gotten lazier, not that we’re suddenly failing in our carnivorous approach…but that’s for another day.

While meat itself is not the culprit, what we have done to it is appalling. If your meat comes out of a pop top can, you can totally blame that (though don’t call it meat please). The over-processing of foods has “convenienced” us into the health crisis we are now fighting.

What about the statements that meat causes cancer? Well, they aren’t scientifically backed. The tests that have been done conclude that it is the CHARRING of meat (crisp it UP!) not the meat itself. Your best defense? Stop burning your meat.

Studies DO support that unprocessed red meat does not increase the risk of cardiovascular disease or diabetes.

What to do? About 4% of people on this planet can get EVERYTHING they need from a strictly vegetarian diet. If you are the other 96%, remember that moderation (that word again) and portion control are key. Learn how to properly cook your meat and stay within your recommended portions to reap the benefits.

8. Low carb Diets are dangerous and ineffective.

Before it gets confusing, I’m not talking about Atkins here. The diet I am referring to is a lifestyle where lower carb intake is required based on the life you live. For example, a 3x per week fitness class taker needs far fewer carbs than an Olympic Gold Medalist specializing in endurance sports. For our purposes here, we’re looking at the 40/30/30 split of macronutrients (proteins, carbs, fats, respectively). Over 20 randomized controlled trials around the world since 2002 have found the following about this particular diet:

  • decreased blood pressure
  • increased weight loss compared to low-fat diets
  • increased HDL and decreased triglycerides
  • changed the pattern of LDL cholesterol from small and dense LDL to large LDL (easier for the body to utilize and dispose).
  • decreased blood sugar and reduced the need for medication in Type 2 diabetics.
  • Easier to stick to most likely due to increased satiety as opposed to low-fat diets.
  • Useful to fight obesity, metabolic syndrome and Type 2 diabetes.

What can you do to jump on the health train? Look into healthy protein sources and figure out how much you need per day to follow the 40/30/30 plan. This is the same plan that I give clients seeking weight loss as well as performance enhancement and overall health and wellbeing.

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9. “Healthiest” diets are low-fat, high-carb.

Interesting enough, the low-fat, high-carb movement came in around 1977…about this time is when obesity is charted. The irony is not lost people.

Bottom line: a low-fat, high-carb diet is hard to stick to for life, therefore it is not a lifestyle change. Once you deviate from the diet, BOOM, the pounds are back and they brought friends. This diet is also proven to be dangerous for those suffering from diabetes, metabolic syndrome and/or obesity. Ditch it. Moving on…

10. Sugar is BAD…due to “empty calories”.

False. You’re excited now right? Hang on: sugar is bad for MANY other reasons…oh, sad face :( Keep reading anyways.

Sugar contains absolutely ZERO essential nutrients.

Excessive, regular sugar intake can cause non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.

Sugar can increase insulin resistance, elevate blood sugars, elevate triglycerides, increase small, dense LDL, and increase abdominal obesity.

Added sugars in foods (check your labels!) have been associated with diabetes, obesity, heart disease and some cancers.

Important note: This does NOT include natural sugars found in fruits and even some vegetables. This sugar is processed and used differently, so hit up that fruit bowl people!

Second important note: PLEASE DITCH FAKE SUGAR! Splenda, Sweet n Low, etc. these are not recognized as a useable fuel source in your body. They are therefore stored in the nearest storage bin, AKA your belly fat, where they sit and play havoc all around. Diet Coke drinkers, step away, take a deep breath, go for a walk and remind yourself that just one calorie isn’t worth your mental and physical health.

So there you have the truth to the top 10 nutrition lies. If you have fallen prey to one or more, have NO FEAR! Information can be obtained to help you reach past the bull and into the light of what actually works. At the end of this year, I’m launching a system to help you reach your goals once and for all. It’s not a silver bullet or a magic pill BUT it will have you feeling magically well in no time. Stick around for more news and until then…

Peace, Love and Lunges,

Michelle

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Top Ten Ways To Lighten UP for Summer

As we approach the warmer months, here are my top 10 ways to lighten the load and start your Summer off feeling a bit more comfortable :)

  1. Start light. I know this may seem counter-intuitive to some (I even believed and preached the “big breakfast” sermon many times!), but research shows that eating a lighter breakfast will actually set you us for a fully functioning digestive system which will lighten you in more ways than one. This will enable your body to assimilate your foods more readily and free up your energy. Think about starting with a whole foods smoothie (bazillion points for green ones!), a fruit plate, some chopped veggies or even some gluten-free toast (I’m really into spelt right now) with smashed avocado and sea salt.
  2. Think nurture, not punish. Instead of hitting the weights first thing or going for sprint training, consider a yoga or Pilates class to start your day. This can help ease any inflammation and aid in digestion, releasing more energy for the rest of your day. Not into either of those? Take a brisk walk instead and save the weights and/or cardio for end of day training.
  3. De-clutter your kitchen. Spend about an hour this weekend chunking out processed foods that don’t make you feel great. Seriously, get rid of them. This process will set you up for success and free up some space in your kitchen which will enable you to feel more comfortable in your space.
  4. Take it to the closet. While you’re at it, take a little time to throw out the clothes you never wear AND the ones that are so ratty it’s really mean to make your family look at you while you wear them :) . I know it’s hard (trust me, I did it a couple of months ago), but in the end your closet and your spirits will feel lighter. The ones that aren’t extremely worn can be washed (please people!) and folded and donated to a local homeless shelter or shelter for abused women.
  5. Evaluate your schedule. Sit down with your to-do list and your actual what-I-really-do-list. Start to cut back on things that suck up your time and make you feel unproductive (Facebook anyone?). This will help you to re-evaluate your priorities and level up your time so you don’t feel overwhelmed.
  6. Go outside! Find a wooded path to walk or hike, take your dog out for a walk or go for a soothing bike ride. You can even find outdoor yoga classes this time of year as well. Spending a little time in the fresh air (try jumping on a trampoline for an energy lift!) can reinvigorate your creativity.
  7. Try a new workout. Head to that new Barre class with your friend, try out a hot yoga class, or even check out the latest pole dancing class (of course, you’ll have lunch after!). Trying something new allows your mind to stop overcontrolling everything all the time. It can also allow you to act on a different part of your personality, freeing up some of that stress we hold on to.
  8. BREATHE! When was the last time you sat down, closed your eyes and just took some deep breaths? It sounds corny, but it really does help. Try this: find a comfortable seat anywhere where you can relax…but don’t fall asleep on me. Close your eyes and take a deep inhale through the nose, counting to 6. Hold the breath lightly at the top, then take a slow exhale, counting to 8. Hold at the bottom and repeat. This will send a “Calm Down” signal to the central nervous system and allow your brain to process thoughts and emotions even better.
  9. Plan some leisure time. Summer is not the time to get all up tight. Set aside some time to indulge on reading a book or simply laying in the sun for a bit (SPF please). Play with your children or visit an old friend or neighbor. Set aside thoughts of “I could be doing something productive right now” and just be in the moment. Life is short, enjoy the still moments when you can.
  10. Get off the computer. Really. Click the screen off, place your hands over your eyes and take 10 deep breaths. Then stand up and stretch, walk a little and return ready to go…or keep walking :)

Hopefully, you can use these tips to create an enjoyable Summer for yourself and those around you.

Until next week,

Michelle

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Finding My Happy Space

Happy Hump Day!

This morning I was able to spend some time in one of my favorite places in the house: my kitchen.

While some won’t think this odd at all, I must confess that I times I disregard my love for the kitchen. Sometimes I simply don’t want to enter it for fear of dirty dishes and big messes. Can any other moms and dads relate here?

The kitchen has always been a vital part of my life. On weekends, my mom could often be found in the kitchen making a true southern breakfast, complete with biscuits, eggs, pancakes AND bacon! I also remember baking chocolate chip cookies in the kitchen and learning the bare (EXTREMELY bare!) basics of baking. The kitchen has always signified a place of nurturing. Unfortunately, as I embarked upon my weight loss journey, my love for  the kitchen dimmed.

My second confession today is that I love food! I really do :) I love crisp, fresh salads and rich, creamy soups just the same. And I can get really excited over  a well cooked hamburger too! Food has seemingly always been a passion for me, so it’s natural that I became a nutritionist. The funny thing is that with my emotional roller coaster with food, I haven’t begun to utilize my nutritionist skills until recently. Here is the very basic thing you need to understand about food: IT WAS MADE TO BE ENJOYED.

You read that right! When did food become the enemy? Ahem…..somewhere in the early 80′s when “diet gurus” starting butting in and telling us what to eat. Have you noticed something? The DIET industry is BOOMING…and so are our waistlines and worse, disease. Coincidence? Well, that’s another post entirely and it is coming :) Food is not your enemy and your enjoyment of food needn’t be martyred to lose weight. In fact, if we would learn to relax and nourish our bodies with what they need (NOBODY needs a Big Mac and fries people), then the body is more complying with letting go of unwanted weight. I speak the truth!

So, I have made a shift from killing my body in the gym to pouring my heart out in the kitchen. My husband and kids LOVE when these moments come around! My intent is to spend time in my happy space every day, preparing meals that nourish us from the inside out. So, that’s all great, but what’s in it for you right? Well, I’ll be sharing my happy space journey with you. I’ll let you in on all the happenings, including the kitchen updates and new gadgets. I just got a Vitamix (OBSESSED!) and I’m in desperate need of picking a color for the kitchen walls. All of it, from recipe remakes to failures to videos on how to ensure you shop your store smart, stock your pantry with confidence, travel light (intestinally speaking) and even make your own dressings and kimchi (oh yes, YOU can do this!).

Why am I doing this? Every good nutritionist (the GOOD ones!) have periods of self experimentation. This ensures that what is being recommended actually works. Through years of research, I have noticed the one common denominator for those seeking help to lose weight or overcome illness is this: FOOD. It’s not that our bodies are just lazy, our food isn’t working FOR us. Actually, over the past couple of decades our food has begun working against us. Any kind of workout will help most people feel better IF they are feeding themselves well. My intention is to make that possible. Eating healthful is not impossible, no matter your career choice or current life situations. Come along for the ride and get ready for vibrant health, renewed energy and all the weight loss your body needs.

From our kitchen to yours,

kitchen help

 

Michelle

 

The Essential Tight Skin Diet Smoothie

Good Monday Morning!

So, you know that I am a big fan of the kitchen right? I love to play around and come up with clean recipes and tasty treats, but these won’t do me a lot of good unless they fuel my body and help propel me towards my goals. So, I wanted to share with you a Tight Skin Diet staple for my mornings. Yep, I blend this beauty up and drink it every single morning. It’s great for those of you who are dealing with weight loss plateaus as well as skin issues. The nutrition in this smoothies gives you 5-7 servings of your fruits and veggies for the day! You read that right. And it’s great for all you veggie haters out there (you know who you are!). The fruit is what you taste and I’ll even give you some tips to make it more palatable if need be. I drink an ENTIRE blenderful every day and it has even replaced my daily multi-vitamin. This shake is great if you’re just starting out on whole foods or trying to incorporate some more veggies into your diet. It helps increase fat burning, decrease free radicals and amp up that healthy skin glow. Think of it as your beauty shake, from the inside out. :)

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Ingredients:

8 oz pure, clean water

1/4 cup low-fat yogurt, plain

1 handful spinach

3 romaine lettuce leaves

2 celery stalks

1 small green apple

1 small green pear

1 banana

1/4-1/2 small avocado

2 carrots (I suggest these ONLY if you have a Vitamix or high-powered blender)

small handful of berries (I usually use blueberries as they are a TSD staple)

Ice to desired consistency

Stevia or raw honey to taste if necessary

If you are the happy owner of a Vitamix, throw it all in and blend on high. If you another blender, start with the water and cruciferous veggies (spinach, lettuce, celery) then add the fruits with the avocado and banana being last. Make sure all fruits and veggies are washed!

Like I said before, this is a big blender full and I personally drink the whole thing every morning :)

If you aren’t in the mood, I suggest placing the rest in a jar with a tight-fitting lid and place in the fridge. It will stay fresh for up to 48 hours after making it. You can feel free to drink some in the morning as well as the afternoon if you like and play around with your fruits and veggies! Be playful in the kitchen. Some fruits/veggies to try:

  • Swiss Chard
  • Kale
  • Mint leaves (a little goes a LONG way)
  • Parsley
  • Cilantro
  • Tomatoes
  • Melons
  • Mango
  • Pineapple
  • Papaya
  • Kiwi

There really isn’t an end. Pineapple has a stronger flavor and can mask veggie taste if you desire that, although growing up and getting over it is another option for you ;)

Be adventurous in your own kitchen! Don’t have time to whip this up every morning? Do it at night and have your jar ready to go as you walk out the door.

It takes me less than 4 minutes from fridge to cup for this bad boy and I reap the benefits of going green daily.

Let me know what you come up with!

 

Michelle

 

Thirsty Thursday: Easy Protein Pancakes

These pancakes can be made in large batches and then frozen in portions of 2. If you workout in the morning, pull some out of the freezer before you start and they will thaw and be ready when you’re done :) They’re yummy, portable and packed with nutrients; everything you need to build a strong, fit body.

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1 cup raw oats

1-1.5 cups egg whites

2 whole eggs

2 TBSP flax-seed (milled or ground)

About 1 scoop whey protein (totally optional)

Mix ingredients together to form pancake batter, then cook through on a skillet or in a pan (ungreased or with small amount of clean cooking oil).

 

 

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I wrap them up in plastic wrap, once cooled, and then place them in a large freezer bag. Be sure to portion before freezing!

I encourage you to play around a bit. I used Peanut Butter Cookie flavored protein (I’m digging Gaspari Myofusion Elite right now), but you can omit it and use stevia to sweeten.

Consider adding spices such as ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg for fat burning pancakes.

You can also add a little cottage cheese to make them moister.

Here’s to your good health, and good eats! There’s no need to give up the foods you love to get the body you want :)

 

Michelle

 

Nutrition News: Why You NEED Carbs

Welcome to your nutrition station :)

I hope you’ve fueled up with a good breakfast and are ready to go this Hump Day! As we forge ahead in our nutrition series, I think it’s important to address a BIG area of concern: CARBS

clean carbs

As my beautiful nutrition mentor and eat clean queen suggests, we all NEED carbs since they play such a huge role in fat burning and muscle building…..we just need to be selective about the source of our carbs.

flat abs breakfast

Clean carbs extend far beyond the general notion of breads and pastas. Carb sources include most of your plants, fruits and veggies, as well as other carb sources such as quinoa, oats, oat bran and even the almond milk you put in your coffee. These are all good, clean sources of carbs and should be enjoyed DAILY in your diet.

So, what is it that carbs do for you?

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For starters, carbs are your body’s most preferred fuel source for energy. If you look at competitive athletes and bodybuilders, the one’s who have been in the game the longest still eat carbs instead of relying on pre-workout drink mixes and fake sugars packed with caffeine. Why? Because your body can easily break carbs down into a usable fuel source (i.e. the glucose we store in our liver and muscles for the body to use during training). As we continue, let me clear up a common myth: there is no “fat burning zone”. At the end of the day, when we refer to fat loss, we are looking at how many calories your body can burn. By the way, I don’t rely on those fancy gadgets worn around certain body parts to tell me how many cals I burn per day….I look at how hard I work and how my clothes fit.

So, in the case of carbs, you have 2 kinds: simple and complex. When we think of simple, we usually think SUGAR. This is not too far off the mark, but I want to expand just a little. Simple sugars consist of either one or two molecules. One-molecule carbs are known as monosaccharides and include glucose, fructose and galactose…all of which are easy to digest. This means if these are taken in directly prior to training or playing a sport, your body can break them down for fuel very efficiently. If they are taken in before sitting at your desk for 4 straight hours, you body breaks them down and packs them into the storage unit, i.e. your fat molecules. So, watch those labels and think about your food. Two-moleculed simple carbs are called disaccharides and include sucrose, lactose, maltose and high fructose corn syrup. These are man-made and much harder for the body to break down in time of need. Lactose is, of course, the sugar in cow’s milk. More and more people are becoming allergic to this as a result of poor nutrition habits.

Complex carbs contain 3-20 molecules. Some are great, clean carbs (such as oats, brown rice, vegetables and quinoa) others are man-made, such as maltodextrins which are found in a variety of sports drinks. These belong to the oligosaccharides family :) . The polysaccharides are composed of more than 20, sometimes up the thousands of carb molecules. Have I lost you already??? Stay with me, you might learn something awesome :) If complex carbs have more molecule, this naturally makes them harder to break down right? So why do we need to choose them over the simple-sugar cousins down the road? Complex carbs provide indigestible fiber, such as cellulose, hemicellulose, gums, and pectins, and are extremely important for gastrointestinal health and disease prevention (particularly Type 2 Diabetes and certain forms of cancer).

So , the question remains: which carbs do we eat? The answer: selective carbs. What do I mean? I’m glad you asked :)

carbs

Without the proper consumption of carbs, we lack the muscle-building and fat burning know how within the human body. Most bodies require the same nutrients, just in different amounts based on genetics and lifestyle. So, if you are preparing for a long run in the morning, a breakfast consisting of oats, fruit, honey and a small protein source (egg, whey protein, Greek yogurt, cottage cheese) would be ideal. However, if you play desk jockey for hours on end, a small protein shake may be more beneficial (or a small egg and English muffin). I am a HUGE fan of eating oatmeal just before my workouts. I keep it clean and simple, adding fruits and maybe a dash of honey. This gives me the carbs my body needs to get started (from the fruit) and the carbs my body needs to keep me going AND start the recovery process (the oats).

It boils down to this: there is NO one true nutrient that needs to be completely cut out of your diet. NOTE: sugar is NOT a nutrient and simple sugar itself is not beneficial to the body. Our bodies were made to be highly efficient, but it is MY firm belief that we have “dieted” ourselves into inefficiency. We have disease that has not existed in the past (pre-diabetes, metabolic syndrome, insulin resistance) due to overall poor health and low standards for nutrition. Raise the bar for yourself! You now know that your body has needs and will be much more willing to do the work to shed the weight if you seek to meet those needs.

Need a little more help? I offer plenty of nutrition options online to get you started. Everything from meal plans to nutrition counseling. Think in basics though: know what you eat, take care of your health.

Until next time, HAVE A HEALTHY DAY!

Michelle

Tough Love Tuesday! The Nutrition Issue

Ditch Diets to Lose Weight

Good morning!

I hope this finds you feeling fresh this beautiful Monday :)

Today will mark the beginning of a nutrition series meant to help you reach your health and fitness goals.

The tip for today: DON’T FALL FOR DIETS!

Here’s the most important thing you can remember is that YOU do not fail diets, diets FAIL YOU! Diets are not meant for success, period. There is not a single diet that can be pointed to as the magic pill. How can I say that? Well, let me pose a question:

If you have to stay on a specific DIET for LIFE, does it really work?

In other words, is a diet working once you start living life?

Your personal diet should be just as different as you are! As you can imagine, mine is pretty weird :) We are all made different, from our hair to our intestines and our diets should reflect that difference. Each of us should eat for health first, but we should also have an enjoyment to our food. Eating clean isn’t a “diet”, it is a lifestyle that many who expect great things from their body adhere to. Why? Well, it’s customizable to each individual. This is precisely why the meal plans you find on here are only for a range of 1-4 weeks. You shouldn’t have to stay on a strict plan forever…that’s not enjoyable.

Scientists have found that is we do not enjoy our food then we are more apt to feel deprived. Notice that has nothing to do with calorie count, but rather the enjoyment factor. Personally, I enjoy salads in the warm weather…it’s the body’s natural response to the external change in temperature. However, if you offer me a salad in the winter, there is no way I’ll touch it! It’s all about the enjoyment.

So, how do you up your enjoyment of your daily diet? Invest some time in it! You don’t have to have 5 course meals every time you eat, but you do need to put forth a little brain effort to plan ahead. Like soups and stews? Fix them on the weekends so you always have something satisfying to eat for a meal. Swap out fatty meats for leaner cuts (i.e. ground chuck for ground sirloin) and amp up your veggies. Those who say they are picky veggie eaters, look for different ways to prep your vegetables. It probably isn’t the vegetable you do not like, but rather the preparation or memory tied to it. Not all veggies taste good raw and there is a LARGE percentage of us that have a hard time digesting raw veggies.

Today, I have a treat for you. EVERY week (since it’s still a little cool) I cook a pot of vegetable soup. It’s easy to digest and pairs well with anything OR can be eaten alone as a light dinner. I encourage you to PLAY around in the kitchen! Mix up your veggies and seasonings and figure out what works best for you. Remember, in season veggies are cheaper on the budget and better for the body.

Vegetable Soup

BASE:

In large soup pot, place 4 tablespoons EVOO (or 2 TBSP coconut oil)

add 1 roughly chopped onion, 4-6 cloves minced garlic and 4-6 celery stalks, chopped

once the onion starts to turn clear add in 2 cups chopped mushrooms (I like baby bella) and simmer with a pinch of salt and pepper for about 6 minutes

Add to this 3 sweet potatoes (small cubes) and 3-4 chopped carrots

Bring all to a simmer, cover and cook 10 minutes

While this is happening, I usually bring the tea kettle to a boil.

After 10 minutes, add in any veggies you want (during the colder months, I usually keep frozen veggies on hand and add those)

cover with the hot water from the kettle AND done.

Your soup is ready and can be paired with burgers, deer sausage (my family fave), chicken breast, center cut pork loin, etc. Keep your meats lean and your body will respond :)

Being the queen or king of the kitchen doesn’t take a ton of time. All it takes is a little prep work and some imagination.

Come back later for more on healthy cooking and eating!

Bon Appetite! and have a healthy day,

 

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