A Happy and Healthy Thanksgiving: 5 healthy tips for a guilt-free holiday + Pumpkin Pie recipe

Thanksgiving is about GIVING THANKS; a time to be with loved ones and celebrate all the awesome things in life. AND it's about delicious comforting food. Who doesn't love Thanksgiving food, pumpkins (or ayote), wine, and family time?

Problem is, many of us health-conscious people simultaneously dread the aftermath of waking up bloated and feeling heavy the next day, and possibly even gaining weight in just one weekend.

Luckily I've discovered that doesn't need to be the case. IT IS TOTALLY POSSIBLE TO ENJOY A HEALTHY THANKSGIVING, while staying guilt-free. Of course indulging a bit (because indulging is OK once in a while), but if you balance it out with some healthier (and even more delicious) recipes, and a few more tips (that I share with you today and in other past blogs), you can fully enjoy the holiday without any negative consequences.

HERE ARE 5 TIPS THAT I PERSONALLY PRACTICE, then check out my blogs for more tips and recipes for a Healthy Thanksgiving

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Coconut Yogurt Chia Pudding Parfait with Papaya Jam

The combo of gut-friendly probiotics and healthy fats from the Coconut Yogurt, together with the omega-3’s, protein, fiber, iron and magnesium from Chia Seeds, makes this Papaya Coconut Chia Pudding an extremely nutrient-dense, easy-to-digest, metabolism-boosting and filling breakfast. This will keep you full more than any cereal, breakfast bar, oatmeal and more than most smoothies!

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I'm a Health Coach. Here is What I Eat in a Day.

As a certified holistic Health Coach (and barre teacher), I practice what I preach; I live a healthy lifestyle and get my daily fill of greens.

Making smarter, healthier food choices is tough at first, but it gets easier with practice and consistency, and I strongly believe that everyone can change the way they eat to feel better inside and out.

I still sometimes struggle with balancing my long days of work, social life, and making time to cook, not to mention that my sweet tooth keeps me from having a perfectly healthy diet.

But I strongly believe in finding a good BALANCE that works for you, while always prioritizing your health and making sure you’re getting the highest quality ingredients on your plate possible.

I’ll take you through my typical day of meals.

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An Easy, Probiotic Mask for Clear, Hydrated, Glowing Skin

Natural DIY face masks are a great "facial" option that can work wonders on your face in just minutes, and are especially helpful when you can't make it every month to your facialist. Plus, you can do them while multitasking!

Today I wanted to share one of my favorite face masks – great for all skin types - that will help you keep a healthy skin microbiome and restore a healthy glow in your skin. I've been doing it a lot recently and am always AMAZED by the instant boost I see in my skin.

This mask is soothing, refreshing and cooling (hello yogurt!), moisturizing, helps balance your pH, remove dead cells, brightens your overall complexion, and fights off any blemishes, leaving your skin feeling baby soft and CLEAN.

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Did you know…? Benefits of COCONUT YOGURT (+ bonus recipe!)

Focusing on gut health can help prevent (even help eliminate) many diseases at their root, and is part of the foundation for a sustainable, healthy lifestyle. To support your gut, it’s key to add PROBIOTICS to our diet, via fermented foods and/or supplements.

One easy and delicious way to get your probiotics is with yogurt, BUT most traditional store-bought yogurts are highly processed, filled with sugar, and your common dairy-milk version can be irritating to the gut for many people, therefore canceling out the positive effects of the probiotics!

So instead, I suggest trying dairy-free (unsweetened) Coconut Yogurt!

Read more to learn BENEFITS of Coconut Yogurt, easy ways to use it, and a delicious recipe that you’ll LOVE!

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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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The Healthiest Chocolate Cupcakes - a delicious & easy recipe for you and the kids

Are you interested in trying a healthy yet delicious sweet treat for you and your kids that 1) isn’t filled with sugar and 2) actually contains healthy ingredients that supports your ( and your kids') overall health?

Check out my awesome, yummy and easy cupcake recipe that will satisfy your sweet tooth yet keep you healthy!

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A Digestive-Friendly Hormone Balancing, Energy Boosting Smoothie (+ Ayurvedic Smoothie Tips)

Today I’m sharing my DELICIOUS, hormone-balancing, digestive-friendly, energy-boosting smoothie - which takes into consideration Ayurvedic wisdom to make it extra healthy, balancing, warming and easy-to-digest. This smoothie is filled with superfoods, and is vegan, paleo-friendly, gluten free, dairy free, grain-free, contains no added sugars, is filled with fiber and plant-based protein, and is super yummy and easy to make.

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A Valentine's Day Libido-Boosting Smoothie

A healthy, balanced diet will not only help you LOOK better and FEEL more confident (important for sex drive), but also delivers key nutrients to keep your libido high.

In the past Valentine Days, I’ve shared a red beet smoothie, as well as healthy chocolate recipes. This Valentines, I’m giving you a recipe to BOOST YOUR LIBIDO (for both you and your partner)!

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Did you know? Benefits & Uses of TAHINI

Tahini is a paste made from ground sesame seeds (basically, the sesame seed version of peanut or almond butter) and is full of copper, zinc, iron, calcium, magnesium, B1, selenium, fiber, and protein. You’ve probably read about it as an ingredient in hummus, but didn’t realize that, not only is it awesome for your health, but it’s delicious in so many more recipes.  

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3 Tips for a Healthier Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving!

Hopefully you're super psyched about this awesome and meaningful holiday. I now live in a new country that doesn't formally celebrate Thanksgiving, but I was secretly happy to learn that my new family here celebrates this American holiday.

So on top of many other things, I am grateful for that this week.

Thanksgiving is, after all, about GIVING THANKS. It's a time to be with loved ones and celebrate all the awesome things in life. And of course, it's a great time to enjoy delicious food. Who doesn't love Thanksgiving food, wine, and family time?

Problem is, many of us health-conscious people simultaneously slightly dread the holiday because we usually wake up bloated and feeling heavy the next day, and possibly even gain weight in just one weekend.

Luckily I've discovered that doesn't need to be the case. IT IS TOTALLY POSSIBLE TO ENJOY A HEALTHY THANKSGIVING, while staying guilt-free. Of course indulging a bit is OK, but if you balance it out with some healthier (and even more delicious) recipes, and a few more tips (that I share with you), you can fully enjoy the holiday without any negative consequences.

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Did You Know...? Benefits of Hemp Seeds (+ Recipes!)

Did you know that Hemp Seeds are one of nature's most perfect and nutritious foods? 

These tiny seeds have a concentrated balance of proteins, essential fats, vitamins and enzymes, combined with almost no sugar, sodium, starches nor saturated fats. They’re super easy to digest and contain about 13 grams of protein in just 3 tablespoons. Plus, like most other seeds, they can be used almost anywhere – from sprinkling on your smoothies/salads/soups to a key ingredient in many yummy plant-based recipes. And personally, I LOVE them!

READ MORE to learn nutritional benefits of hemp seeds, and 4 delicious recipes of mine using hemp seeds.

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4 “Healthy” Breakfasts that are Affecting your Health (and what to eat instead)

Starting your day with a healthy breakfast helps to stabilize you, as you face the day ahead. When your blood sugar is balanced after a balanced and nutritious breakfast, you’ll feel more focused and energized. It also helps to rev up your metabolism to more effectively burn off fat and calories throughout your day. A healthy breakfast isn’t just about being low in calories; a well-balanced breakfast will provide protein, complex carbs, and healthy fats in order to give you lasting energy without spiking up your blood sugar.

Here are 4 COMMON "HEALTHY" BREAKFASTS that may be spiking your blood sugar and contributing to an afternoon energy slump, lack of concentration and more, and EASY WAYS TO FIX THEM in order for them to help you reach your health goals.

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5 Reasons Why I Eat Ginger Every Day (+ recipes)

Luckily for me, I naturally love spicy foods, and I’ve found that a lot of the spices/ herbs/ condiments that I love most are also awesome for my digestion. One of these miracle digestive spices is GINGER.

Ginger is a widely used condiment, that’s part of the same family as turmeric and cardamom, all of which are great for our health. And like turmeric (which most of you know is a powerful anti-inflammatory agent if you read my blogs), Ginger also anti-inflammatory properties, in addition to to tons of other benefits (beyond digestion!). 

Read below for 5 BENEFITS OF GINGER (as well as recipes and tips on how I use ginger in my daily diet).

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Easy & Delicious Homemade Granola

One of my goals has been to cut back on processed foods, in particular, those with a ton of sugar and unnecessary additives – such as cereals, bars and store-bough granola. Why? Because I’d say it’s the #1 factor hurting our digestive (and overall) health.

And while before, the thought of making my own “healthy treats” sounded way too time consuming and complicated, once I tried it, I realized how easy (and fun) it is. I make a large batch of my granola and/or my granola bars once every few weeks and freeze them, and that way I have a homemade sweet treat on hand for when I’m craving a bit of crunch to add to any breakfast or as a snack.

I promise you, its way easier than you think, and really doesn't take much time. Plus, you'll love it!

So let me share with you my home-made recipes for my "superfood" Granola and Granola bars.

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Why I Eat Sweet Potatoes Every Week

One of my all time favorite veggies are Sweet Potatoes. First, because I love the TASTE (that’s probably because I have a sweet tooth). Second, because of their nutrition and HEALTH BENEFITS. Third, because they're so VERSATILE and great to use for many healthy recipes (think sweet potato brownies, sweet potato crust, sweet potato toasts,..).

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A “Quinoa-like Superfood” You Should Add to Your Diet (and 4 recipes!)

Most everyone knows about the delicious superfood quinoa and its awesome health benefits. BUT if you’re getting bored of only using quinoa and occasionally rice, maybe it’s time you start exploring other delicious, nutritious, and naturally gluten-free grains. (And in fact, quinoa and all of these that I’m about to list, are technically NOT grains, but SEEDS that are high in protein and fiber. I call them “grain-like seeds”. Which is in part why they're easier on the gut!) Examples include:

  • Buckwheat
  • Sorghum
  • Millet
  • Amaranth
  • Teff

Today I want to focus on BUCKWHEAT as its one of my favorites. I started eating it for its hormone-balancing properties, and now I eat it because I love it!

Here is why you should be adding buckwheat to your diet (and 4 delicious recipes!):

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A Quick, Delicious, Gut-Friendly Meal: Easy Vegetable Chickpea Curry

Do you come home tired from work without energy to cook (nor digest) a big meal? Do you crave a light, simple meal, yet comforting and soothing?

Maybe you’re still a bit stressed form work and your belly feels a bit bloated, so you know that you need something easy to digest.

This happens to me constantly. And while a sandwich or bowl of cereal is what I would do in the past, I now know that all that gluten and sugar at night is the WORST thing for my belly. So about a year ago, on one of these tired work days, I came home to go though my pantry and fridge to see what easy and belly-friendly meal I could make, and that’s when I first came up with my Easy Vegetable Chickpea Curry. And now, its become one of my go-to meals for these days.

On top of being simple and delicious, it’s awesome for your digestion. This dish is filled with all the different types of fiber to help you poop beautifully (yep I said it!) and the curry spices help you digest the food – which is especially important at dinner time.

And most importantly, this dish can be done in just half an hour (or even less). 

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Your New Favorite Breakfast Recipes

Most of you by now know that I’m a green-smoothie fanatic, and its always my favorite breakfast. But once in a while I like to venture and create different breakfasts, for me and now my husband (as well as my clients).

Earlier this month I shared with you my Sweet Potato Toast recipes. Continuing with this breakfast theme, today I want to share a small collection of my favorite simple and healthy breakfasts for you to try – with something for everyone. And I bet some of these may just become YOUR new favorite breakfast recipes.

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