Did You Know...? Why I Avoid PEANUTS and what to eat instead

Nuts are the perfect snack, filled with nutrients (including B-vitamins, zinc, magnesium and vitamin E, with the nutritional profile differing slightly depending on the nut), healthy fats, fiber and protein. They fill you up and nourish you. And they’re so yummy and versatile – great for adding a crunch to recipes, to make pestos, creamy sauces, and more.

However, many people mistakenly put peanuts under the same category as tree nuts  - when actually, peanuts are NOT tree nuts, they are LEGUMES. While they do carry some of the above benefits of tree nuts, they also have many qualities that personally keep me away from peanuts.

READ MORE to learn two key reasons to AVOID Peanuts, AND get two delicious peanut-free nut butter recipes.

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Healthy Recipes for Your Summer Picnic

If you’re trying to stay healthy this summer (maybe you’ve even committed to doing a detox, or are trying to do a low-carb eating plan like Keto or Paleo, or just cut back on gluten and refined sugar), then making your own compliant dishes is the easiest way to enjoy eating with friends while having food you can eat!

Plus, it’s a great opportunity to have fun in the kitchen, and impress your friends!

So I’ve put together some of my favorite “summer picnic” recipes, which are mostly detox-friendly, or adaptable, and free of processed sugar, gluten, grains and dairy. At the same time, they are crowd pleasers!

  • Chicken Zucchini Burgers

  • Kale & Avocado Pancakes

  • Simple Holiday Salad (great for ALL holidays and large meals!)

  • Roasted Cauliflower and Chickpea Salad

  • Sweet Potato Tater-Tots

  • Two-minute Guacamole

  • Crispy Roasted Chickpeas

  • Sweet Potato Chocolate Chip Brownies

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Healthy Recipes for Your Summer Picnic / Barbecue / Potluck

If you’re trying to stay healthy this summer (maybe you’ve even committed to doing a detox, or are trying to do a low-carb eating plan like Keto or Paleo, or just cut back on gluten and refined sugar), then making your own compliant dishes is the easiest way to enjoy eating with friends while having food you can eat!

Plus, it’s a great opportunity to have fun in the kitchen, and impress your friends!

So I’ve put together some of my favorite “summer picnic” recipes, which are mostly detox-friendly, or adaptable, and free of processed sugar, gluten, grains and dairy. At the same time, they are crowd pleasers!

  • Chicken Zucchini Burgers

  • Kale & Avocado Pancakes – with Herbed Cashew Cream Sauce

  • Simple Holiday Salad (great for ALL holidays and large meals!)

  • Roasted Cauliflower and Chickpea Salad over Arugula

  • Sweet Potato Tater-Tots

  • Two-minute Guacamole

  • Crispy Roasted Chickpeas

  • Sweet Potato Brownies

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I Just Finished the Whole30 Challenge - Here are my 10 Takeaways

I am a believer in avoiding fad diets. Instead, I believe in finding the eating style that works for you longer-term. One that helps you reach and maintain your health goals.

But on top of that, when you feel you need a short-term boost to your health (and waistline), food-based detoxes are optimal.

In the toxic world we live in, we can all benefit from a light cleanse here and there. While they may not be necessary if you already eat a very clean diet, I find that the benefits outweigh any negatives, for almost everyone.

And, if you do have a particular health concern, doing a longer-term detox – like a 30 day elimination diet – can be EXTREMELY beneficial. And that’s what led me to trying the Whole30.

READ MORE to learn more about the Whole30, my takeaways, recommendations, and lessons learned!

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Why You Should Try a 30-day Alcohol-Detox

I strongly advocate for living and enjoying a balanced life, and that means giving in to your guilty pleasures (in small, safe amounts) from time to time.

For me, enjoying a glass or two of wine is part of my balance, and luckily, there are tons of benefits that come along with small amounts of wine consumption.

However, there are even more reasons to go on an Alcohol Detox for a month. This means not one drop of alcohol for 30 days. Which YES is hard for most of us, but 100% worth it.

Read more to learn 6 Benefits of a 30-Day Alcohol Detox, and a few tips to get you started and help you commit!

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Did You Know...? Importance of B-Vitamins

The 8 B-vitamins - B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B7, B9, B12 (referred to as B-complex) - play a very important role in keeping our bodies functioning properly. These essential nutrients help convert our food into fuel, giving us energy. They're also KEY for hormonal balance, a happy mood, strong and healthy hair, for proper detoxification, and more!

READ MORE to learn where we get these nutrients, what are signs that we're deficient, when we should supplement (and why!)

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Did You Know....? Dangers of Dryer Sheets

I recently discovered how bad laundry DRYER SHEETS are, so i wanted to share with you some info to make you more aware and help you reduce the toxic load in your life.

READ MORE to learn healthier alternatives that will leave your laundry clean and soft without affecting your health!

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16 Smoothie Boosters for a Exceptionally Nutritious Smoothie

A smoothie is an awesome way to get a shot of nutrition for breakfast, and can serve as a fully balanced meal that will boost your metabolism, give you tons of energy while keeping your blood sugar stable.

Read more for my favorite 16 healthy additions to your morning smoothie (all of which I use!), that will make your smoothie more anti-inflammatory, immune-boosting, hormone balancing and gut-healing.

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Getting Started on Your NO-SUGAR Plan: 3 Life-Changing Tips

Every day, more studies are proving that SUGAR plays a crucial role in the development of many of those illnesses we fear most, including heart disease, cancer, diabetes, Alzheimer’s and obesity to name a few.

And I see it.

In my health coaching practice and in my detoxes, I continually find that sugar is one of the main problem causers in people, keeping them from reaching their health goals.

While small, infrequent amounts of processed sugar is not a health risk for most people, studies show that refined sugar may have addictive properties, and many of us struggle with limiting our sugar intake.

The problem is that refined sugar is found in virtually every processed food on the market, and you may be consuming more than you think...

Read more to learn about the benefits of quitting sugar and how to get started today on your "no-sugar" plan!

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8 Tips for Relieving Headaches

Do you ever get bad headaches? Maybe you had too much wine last night? Maybe its “that time of the month” or you’re going through hormonal changes? Maybe you’re detoxing from sugar and coffee (or other addictions) and you’re feeling the effects with a pulsing headache? Maybe you’re not sure what it is, but come mid-afternoon, you get an annoying headache….?

Many of us are used to just popping a pill and praying it subsides. However, as most of you know, I’m no longer a fan of popping a pill because you’re not addressing the root cause and that headache will keep coming back. Plus, all pills have side-effects. Instead, I’d like to share with you some more natural tips when you’re suffering from headaches.

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My Beginner's Smoothie Guide

By popular demand from my readers, I wanted to share what I call my “beginner’s smoothie guide”.  I LOVE my morning smoothies (as all my ex-coworkers know very well and would make fun of me for!) because while they look green and weird, my recipes are actually delicious, and of course, they are the quickest way to get a nutritious breakfast that revs up my metabolism and leaves me satisfied for hours.  

I make sure to include a combination of organic greens, low-glycemic fruit, clean protein and healthy fats, so this way, my smoothies won't cause a spike in blood sugar levels the way most other quick breakfast options do, like cereal and even oatmeal (especially if it’s the quick oats you get on-the-go).  And of course, green smoothies are an easy way to get 1-2 servings of greens into your day!

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Want a Flat Belly? 5 Things to Avoid

In my 6 Secrets to a Flat Belly WEBINAR last week, I shared 6 of my best secret tips to a get and maintain a flat belly. But even applying those (effective & proven) habits aren’t enough if you don’t start by AVOIDING THE KEY TRIGGERS that are leading to those extra pounds around your midsection. I always believe in starting by finding the ROOT CAUSE behind your health issues. And in the case of excess belly fat and bloat, it’s usually centered around inflammation as well as sub-optimal digestion.

Here are the 5 key things to AVOID (that will address the likely root cause of your belly fat) and what to eat instead:

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10 Tips for Eliminating Cellulite

Unfortunately, it's extremely common to develop some cellulite on our bod, particularly on the booty, upper legs and abdomen.

And while we shouldn’t be ashamed, it’s still something that no one likes. Let’s be real, we all want it GONE. 

First - what causes cellulite?

Cellulite is essentially fat deposits just below the skin, and it can be attributed to your diet, lifestyle, hormones, and partly also age and genetics. Usually it’s a combination of these things, but the first two (diet and lifestyle) are always at least partially responsible. Certain diet and lifestyle factors can lead to a buildup of toxicity in your body, and these toxins are stored in your fat, and help contribute to the “dimples” of cellulite.

So it is incredibly important to start detoxifying your body in a gentle way to get rid of these stored toxins, and then implement healthier habits in your day to day to minimize further accumulation of toxins.

On top of that, it helps to strengthen the connective tissue of your skin, and reduce fat overall. 

Here are my 10 BEST TIPS FOR ELIMINATING CELLULITE:

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Your Guide to Healthy Fish - Which to Eat & Which to Avoid

Fish is a great source of protein and healthy fat, and in my view, an integral part of a healthy diet. In comparison to other types of meat, fish is generally lower in calories, saturated fat and cholesterol, and easier to digest (which is key, as optimal digestion is the cornerstone to optimal health and weight loss!).

Most importantly, fish contains Omega-3 fatty acids that are ESSENTIAL for your overall health (especially brain and heart health!).

However, its important to be aware that fish contains mercury, which in large amounts, can be toxic to our bodies. Excess mercury has been linked to neurological development issues in babies, as well as many GI and hormonal problems for adults. So it’s absolutely key to limit your intake of high mercury fish.

Also, you must be careful of how the fish is sourced. When the fish is “farm raised”, it's fed substances that can be harmful when ingested. Certain fishing techniques are also posing threats to the environment.

Read more to learn my basic guidelines when eating fish, and the TOP 5 FISH TO EAT & AVOID.

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How to Make Homemade Almond Milk (video)

You’ve maybe heard by now that cutting out dairy (or at least cutting back on milk and cheese in particular) has a lot of benefits. 

I personally saw a huge improvement in my digestion when I cut out dairy (and gluten) from my diet. Now I may enjoy it in small amounts from time to time, but for the most part, I stick to non-dairy alternatives when I need some dairy, which is mostly for my tea/coffee or breakfasts (oats, smoothies or chia puddings).

Almond milk (like other nut and seed milks) provides a healthier alternative to regular milk - it’s lower in calories, fat and sugar, plus rich in fiber and B vitamins. Almond milk is also a lower glycemic option to rice milk, and doesn’t have any hormone disrupting properties like soy milk (which is also usually derived from GMO soy beans).

The problem is that the store-bought nut milk versions are prepared with preservatives to extend the shelf life, and often have added sugars, as well as other ingredients like carrageenan to alter the consistency.

For that reason, I had been wanting to make homemade nutmilk for a long time. I had heard it was easy, creamy and delicious, so finally gave it a try.

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An Effective Way to Overcome Your Sugar Addiction

Nowadays, we're eating more and more sugar without even realizing it. 

Sugar is being added to EVERYTHING these days (in packaged foods, supplements, restaurants, etc). It's often disguised as different names, including: honey, agave, cane sugar, date sugar, beet sugar, turbinado sugar, but also less obvious ones like: malt (barley malt or diastatic malt), syrup (corn syrup, maple syrup, carob syrup, rice syrup), evaporated cane juice, maltose, sucrose, dextrose, fructose, glucose, maltodextrin, and more!

And natural sugars also add up. So even if you're not big on desserts, chances are you're still consuming a lot more sugar than you think. (I bet that if you were to actually count the grams of sugar that you eat in a day, you’ll be shocked!)

And the hard truth is - sugar is bad for everyone, not just people at risk of diabetes.

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My Favorite Breakfast Smoothie Recipes

By popular demand and as a follow-up to my Beginners Smoothie Guide from last month, today I'm sharing some easy and super healthy smoothie recipes that I make almost every morning.  These smoothies make a filling and delicious breakfast that will keep your blood sugar stable, rev up your metabolism, and serve as a great tool for weight loss.  Plus, they're quick to make and easy to take on the go!

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