Couldn’t have said it better

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My summer recently began, kids are out of school, the steady stream of busyness that took over May is now down to a trickle and I’ve had some time to read some fantastic things on the internet that I’m bursting to share.

Wishing everyone a restful and enjoyable Memorial Day weekend.  (Side note: I recently had dinner with an American soldier who is on leave, he mentioned the desperate need of things like socks and underwear,  and that there is little, to no need for the candy and sweets that apparently show up in loads.)

Great article on “healthy habits”.

Loved what this guy said about “appreciating the tools modern medicine offers but not relying on them to keep us healthy”.

Had a beautiful lightbulb moment reading about the mental load attached to parenting, running a household, etc. in this article.

Re-read this article to gather my courage for stepping out into the world in a bathing suit for the first time since last summer.

Got on a roll and hunted down this article again for tips when buying a bathing suit, hilarious.

 

Happy long weekend! XO.

 

 

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The best soy latte that you’ve ever had?

photo via wellness mama

photo via wellness mama

Remember 2001?  Train’s “Drops of Jupiter” played at least 10 times a day on every radio station I listened to.  I remember being intrigued by this foreign thing “soy latte”, at the time I was a “tall, vanilla non-fat latte please”, I was also smoking cigarettes and eating pizza about 4 times a week.  Ah youth.  Well later in life I embraced the soy latte, a decaf soy latte to be exact, it’s my go to if I’m forced into a Starbucks.

There’s a huge debate going on about soy, health food or health foiler?  I’ve recently been advised to kick it out of my diet, it turned out to be a “foiler” for me personally.  Luckily, I’d stumbled upon this, butter in my coffee?  OF COURSE, I’ll try it!  Butter seems to be a non-disrupter for me, a glass of milk – nope not going to fly, but butter for cooking eggs – no digestive problems at all.  Some of you may be gasping – but the saturated fat, the cholesterol!!  You may be interested in this little NPR interview, “Rethinking Fat:  The Case for Adding Some into Your Diet” .  Me, I’m a fat fan.

So, I started looking into it a bit more and came upon, Bulletproof coffee and Wellness Mama’s “healthy coffee“.  In my heart of hearts I never understood how something that smells so divine – coffee – could be bad.  Thanks (yet again) to the amazing internet I have a bit more insight, I am still curious if when these folks go without there are any withdrawal symptoms…..may have to personally test that theory.

In the meantime, here’s how I’ve been enjoying my occasional at-home coffee these days:

1 cup coffee (I make pour-over), or tea

1 TBS Kerrygold butter

1 TBS coconut oil

Mix everything in a blender, pour into a cup and enjoy your frothy concoction.

Options:  vanilla extract, honey, stevia, also amazing with chai.

Happy sipping.


It’s not a diet, It’s a lifestyle

photo via wehearit.com

photo via wehearit.com

I’m beginning to hear another phrase, along with my title, “if I had a dollar every time someone says ‘It’s not a diet, It’s a lifestyle’ I’d be a rich lady”.

“Diet” seems to be a dirty word, it’s attached to suffering, sacrifice, overall unpleasantness, maybe discomfort.  “Lifestyle” sounds fun, right?  It’s a life with style, something most people would readily agree to.

The fact is 80%* of healthy lifestyle changes revolve around diet, or let’s say the food you are putting into your body.  If you’ve been pursuing healthy choices for any period of time, you know enough to stay away from fad diet schemes or to get pulled into the latest media darling of healthy eating – Gluten free cup cakes, anyone?  But at the same time, with the world shouting in your face about obesity epidemics and toxic foods you may be itching to change your life this spring and totally unsure where to begin.

In my personal research of reading books, spending loads of time online, listening to all kinds of doctors, perusing loads of “diets” (Vegan, Mediterranean, Paleo, Plant-based, Clean, The Kind Diet, The Detox Diet, Crazy Sexy Diet, The Body Ecology Diet,  Weston Price, Kimberly Snyder, Dr. Frank Limpan, Dr. Weil…..the list goes on and on), here’s the basic skeletal structure of what a healthy lifestyle looks like:

EAT:  Non-modern foods – think as close to nature as possible (Apple vs. Apple Jacks), cook at home as often as possible.  Think in groups like: protein, fat and carbohydrate, these are the things your body needs and can really use, not Doritos (which falls into the “franken-food” category).

MOVE:  Exercise, six days a week.  Walk, dance, run, garden, vacuum, jump rope – don’t worry about a set time or pushing yourself till you drop, just get your body moving and build on as you are ready.

DRINK:  Water, water and more water

REST:  You must sleep, all kinds of repair and cleaning goes on in your lovely body (much of which we still don’t completely understand) while you are getting your shut eye.

If you are in the midst of making changes, I’d also encourage you to BE KIND to yourself.  Many of the less than healthy habits we’ve picked up have been in our lives for awhile, it takes time to let them go as well.

* This “80%” is a totally made number on my part, pulled from my own guess-timation while doing research.  I assigned such a large percentage because it plays a very large part in getting healthy.

 

 


My first cleanse – Day 2

We continue my sister’s series of her first cleanse, using a “Five Day Flush Gut Cleanse” developed by Dr. Junger, presented by Dr. Oz.
Doug salad

Day two:  We’re off work. Nothing to do all day but think about all the food we can’t eat.  huh, maybe not the greatest idea?  SO we decide to keep busy.  We drink our Green Coco Shake, which we both preferred to the Grasshopper shake the day before.  Then we decided to do a little yard work.  We got a little obsessive and stayed outside working until lunch.  We had really worked up an appetite, so thank goodness we got to look forward to a hardy, hot….um..green salad?  Yeah, green salad with almonds (which made the dish), black olives (yum), and a s dressing of….wait.  No dressing?  That’s right, a dry, raw salad for lunch, or “rabbit food” as my husband non-lovingly called it.  But the salads were HUGE (I doubled the recipe unsure if it was for 1 or 2 people) and somehow satisfied us enough to go back outside and keep working until it was time to pick up the kids from school.  We actually made an entire herb garden that day.  Complete with double stacked railroad ties, and organic soil with organic mulch on top.  It was beautiful and in the past, my husband and I enjoyed nothing more than sitting on our porch after work like this and enjoying a beer….Hmm…I mean carrot sticks.  Today, we enjoy carrot sticks.  And there it is again: that 5:00 inner clock ringing for a beer or glass of wine.  The evening of Day 2 had me so tempted to cheat with a beer, that I began to visualize all the ice cream and bacon I couldn’t eat so that I wouldn’t think about all the wine and beer I couldn’t drink.  And you know?  It worked.  Probably not the kind of visualization exercise my sister had in mind when she was offering supportive ideas to get me through the cravings, but still, it worked.  I loved the text my sister sent me asking if I wanted to try some “distractive breathing” and I texted back with, “NO!  I want to try some distractive drinking!”  Ah, it’s important to laugh when you’re in hell.  My reward at the end of the day was an amazing chicken coconut soup, that was perfect, “except noodles would have really made this,” according to my husband.  We both had to laugh at the truth of that statement because it applied to just about everything we had eaten.  But we did it, and that takes us to Day Three.

800 arrows note:  Day three is typically the hardest, it’s when detox symptoms are likely to begin, stay tuned to see how my sister and her amazing husband do once the “cleansing” part of the cleanse begins.

 


Doctor. Doctor.

I just finished a 5 day cleanse endorsed by not 1 but 2 doctors! Dr. Oz partnered with Dr. Junger and put several mini cleanses together for a range of needs, be it vegan, gut cleanse, or an all liquid number, these doctors have got you covered. My sister joined me in this experiment and I’m crossing my fingers she’ll do a recap of her experience for you lovely readers.
Personally, I’m a fan! I picked up so new do’s and don’ts from this go round of playing with my food.

Turkey Tacos for Day 1

Turkey Tacos for Day 1

Lesson 1:  Following new recipes makes my head hurt and is frustrating.  Make that 3 unfamiliar recipes/day and I’m downright cranky.  Next time I know to plan accordingly, double up the first two days so if you experience detoxing symptoms day 3 (which is typical), you’re not also fighting with another new recipe.

image via Dr. Oz

image via Dr. Oz

Lesson 2:  If something sounds terrible to you – skip it. This meal plan called for a “cucumber bisque”, that totally had my inner-three year old making a “that’s disgusting face”.  I found a substitute that had me happily consuming all the appropriate veggies.

The have and have not's for the cleanse

The have and have not’s for the cleanse

Lesson 3:  Put together a little “emergency food kit” as Dr. Hyman calls it.  A packette of nut butter, an approved bar, hard boiled egg, water, a piece of fruit.  With only 5 days in this cleanse, you want every moment to count!  Life happens and you’re well planned lunch gets wiped due to a sick kid or traffic or whatever unexpected curve life throws your way.  If you have your emergency kit, you’re much more likely to stay on the plan and away from the drive-thru line.

Here’s to happy, healthy eating for 1 day, 5 days or for your life.


Spring Skin

Sseko Designs

image via Sseko Designs

I wore sandals out to dinner this weekend!  Sandals!  It’s the first time my toes have been uncovered in months, there is something about wearing half a shoe that’s instantly relaxing.  Digging through my shoes to unearth my sandals got me thinking about changing some other things around as the winter season lifts and we shift into spring.

Dry brushing, you know I’m a fan.  Something I’ve changed in the routine is dry brushing before my morning exercise.  Could be my imagination, but I swear I sweat more (a good thing), also it fits into my routine easily to slip off the PJ’s, brush all over, slip on clothes (exercise worthy or not) and get on with my day.  This also helps make it more of an everyday thing.

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Moisturizing, I have a habit of not using enough.  I now realize, it’s like medicine – if you aren’t using the correct dosage, you won’t get the intended results. No more skimping on my lotion, the experts say to slather it on like you are frosting a cake – this goes for SPF as well if you are lucky enough to be getting that kind of sunshine!

Fake Tanning, I’ve been hiding my face from the sun for years but now I’m starting to give the rest of me more shade too.  This makes the thought of shorts…….less fun.  So this year I’m planning to try a few sunless tanning products.  I’ve written before that putting stuff on your skin is the same as putting it in your mouth.  Here are a few brands that passed my criteria:  Chocolate SunLavera, The True All Natural Self Tanner for Face & Body, MooGoo

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Hydrating, this is obviously not seasonal thing but as the days get warmer I need to be even more vigilant about staying hydrated.  Think of it like magic juice, because a well hydrated body is really a magical thing – supple skin (read less appearance of cellulite), better cardiovascular health, cleanses toxins, muscles and joints work with more ease, oral health, aids weight loss – Yup, drink UP!

For more ideas on welcoming spring, check out Darling Magazine, it’s a really, really, really cool site.


Best kitchen tip this year

Clean your pan BEFORE you take it off the stove!  Bear with me, I don’t use a microwave so all cooking from heating oil to melting chocolate to warming left overs and actual cooking is done on the stove.  There’s some good stuff out there about what kind of cookware you should use and why, the 2 pans I end up using 99% of the time are my Lodge skillet and All Clad pot.  Trust me when I say neither are easy to clean…….until I learned this trick.

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I hear it’s called “deglazing” by those who know what they are doing in the kitchen.  The basic steps are when your meal is finished in the pan (or nearly finished), crank up the heat and add a bit of water.  The water begins to boil and you can easily scrape along the pan removing all the cooked on bits, no more scraping scrambled egg after soaking for hours!  This has saved me tons of time and effort plus I feel very chef-y when deglazing, had to share with you fabulous folks!  For concise step by step instructions with photos check out The Kitchn.