Mediterranean Diet: Key Takeaways for Your Healthiest Self

Today I wanted to share a bit about the principles of a MEDITERRANEAN, ANTI-INFLAMMATORY DIET, which I personally apply a lot in my personal life, and recommend as a general starting point with most of my health coaching clients.

The Mediterranean diet is all about eating fresh, whole foods and keeping your heart healthy with tons of fiber and healthy fats.

It focuses on eating a wide variety of local produce, particularly colorful fruits and veggies packed with antioxidants. So it’s essentially a high-antioxidant and anti-inflammatory diet.

The BEST part about it is that it’s pretty relaxed and balanced. It encourages eating all food groups, drinking your water, even occasional coffee, red wine and dark chocolate are totally OK. Then accompanying these foods with a lifestyle of plenty exercise, time with family and friends, time in nature, and of course, promotes ENJOYING YOUR FOOD. (Think of the Italians and Greeks!). Not too complicated.

Read More

Ayurveda 101: Bringing Your Body Into Balance

I recently shared with you why I’m a big believer of a NO-DIET plan and a balanced lifestyle. (If you haven’t checked out, READ HERE).

That being said, there are some dietary theories and lifestyles that I believe have good backing, lots of positive research showing their benefits, and are good for you to know more about. It doesn’t mean you have to follow their “rules” 100%, BUT their principles are extremely beneficial in achieving and maintaining a healthy, balanced diet and lifestyle that can help you reach (and sustain) your health goals.

I wanted to share a bit about the principles of AYURVEDA, which I personally apply a lot in my personal life and with my health coaching clients.

READ MORE to learn the basics of Ayurveda, and how you can use it to bring more balance in your life (and that includes reaching your ideal weight, improving your digestion, skin, destressing, and more!). 

Read More

The “NO DIET PLAN” for a Healthier You

As a Health Coach, and as a former yo-yo dieter myself, I have learned the importance of avoiding the word diet, avoiding the labeling of foods, of needing to follow the latest trendy diet with obsession, of banning entire food groups that aren’t actually harming us, or worse, counting calories or measuring our food.

I constantly see people that feel they need to follow a strict diet for a period of time, every year, and it never works. They often lose a few pounds short-term, but when they get off the diet, the weight returns. It leads to a feeling of never being happy with themselves, and diet obsession.

READ MORE to learn what actually will help you find your ideal eating plan that will keep you at your healthy weight.

Read More

5 Diet and Health Myths - Debunked

All of us read stuff on the internet, and hear things from friends and family that convince us that this food is bad for our health, or that food makes us gain weight.

We end up listening more to outside noise instead of listening to our own bodies. Not only that, we often go to extremes.

For example, we hear everywhere that carbs make us gain weight, so then we go cut out all carbs and next thing we know, we’re faced with constipation and a horrible hormonal imbalance.

So before you go to extremes, check out these common mistakes that many of us are making nowadays.

Read More

16 Healthiest Carbs

While everyone knows that too much carbs, especially refined carbs, can make you gain weight, completely removing carbs can also have a negative effect on your body, leading to higher stress levels, sugar cravings, imbalanced blood sugar levels, imbalanced hormones and more. Some healthy carbs are (in most cases) an essential part of a healthy BALANCED diet.

Of course, the QUALITY of those carbs is important, as is the quantity (which will depend on your health goals, activity levels and more).

SO WHICH ARE THE BEST CARBS?

Read More

Why I Am NOT a Vegan

I’m a HUGE fan of eating tons and tons of vegetables, as well as other nutritious plant-based foods including fruits, nuts, seeds, and small amounts of legumes and whole grains. And most people ASSUME that being such a "health-freak" that I MUST be vegetarian.

But that’s not the case.

In my years as a health coach, I’ve learned (and keep proving, to myself and others) that no one diet works for everyone. We are all different, and while many people do best on vegan diets (the benefits are numerous!), many people do best with some animal protein.

But GOOD-QUALITY ANIMAL PROTEIN is one of those variables that I believe is not necessary for everyone, but in small amounts, can be HUGELY BENEFICIAL for many people.

Read More

7 Tips for Alleviating PMS

Do you ever suffer from PMS symptoms, and wonder WHY you feel so sh*tty, when others don’t? Or maybe you just accept it as “normal” and load up on pain killers and chocolate during that time of the month.

While roughly 75% of women experience headaches, bloating, difficulty sleeping, mood swings and other symptoms of PMS, there is a lucky 25% hardly feel a thing. And the most amazing piece of news that I’ll share with you today is that – YOU DON’T HAVE TO SUFFER FROM PMS. You can even overcome the acne, cravings and fatigue, and without drugs. PMS is not “a given” and you can avoid it through some natural modifications.

The key to eliminating your PMS symptoms is to focus on the right diet (and lifestyle) factors that help balance your hormones, in particular, to avoid estrogen dominance, excess cortisol, and insulin resistance.

Diets rich in sugar, refined carbohydrates, conventionally farmed (non-organic) meats and dairy products, caffeine and alcohol, all promote hormone imbalances. Stress, environmental pollutants and hormone-disrupting chemicals further disrupt your hormone. These diet and lifestyle factors contribute to inflammation and increased stress in your body, which get your hormones more out of whack, worsening your PMS symptoms.

So now that you know the key triggers of PMS, lets talk about all the things you can be doing to create more hormonal balance.

Here are 7 effective tips to start implementing now to avoid PMS:

 

Read More

A Delicious Fiber- & Protein-Rich Breakfast to Fuel Your Metabolism: Sweet Potato Toast

I’m constantly being asked for new healthy breakfast recipes, as not everyone loves green smoothies (or they get bored of them), and same goes for oatmeal. So I’m always checking out new health trends and experimenting new recipes. Today I’m excited to share with you a healthy, fiber-, protein- and antioxidant-filled breakfast that I love and highly recommend: the SWEET POTATO TOAST. 

I know it may sound weird – “toast” with no toast – but let me tell you, it’s not only becoming a huge trend, it’s actually something that I have been suggesting as a gluten-free alternative to my clients for a while, and have had huge success with. I think it’s mostly because it actually works really well, it’s easy, versatile and DELICIOUS. The sweet potato adds a slightly sweet flavor but without overpowering the flavor of your toppings. Plus, it doesn’t have any inflammatory properties like regular bread (as it’s naturally gluten free), and it’s grain-free / Paleo-friendly.

Additionally, I’m a huge fan because of the added nutritional benefits. Firstly, its high in antioxidants, like beta-carotene that your body converts into Vitamin A, which is essential to strengthen your hair, nails, skin, vision, and immune system. It’s extremely high in fiber, and a great food to help stabilize your hormones. Additionally, it has vitamin C, potassium, magnesium, vitamin D and iron. And most importantly, all versions of my Sweet Potato Toast that I’m sharing with you today are high in protein and healthy fats, so my combos help to rev up your metabolism first thing in the day, and keep you full for hours. So, in my book, it’s an ideal breakfast for almost anyone, including those looking to lose weight. 

Here is my basic Sweet Potato Toast recipe with 4 amazing metabolism-boosting versions:

Read More

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.

Read More

10 Ways to Boost Your Metabolism

I am constantly meeting people that are struggling to lose weight despite eating healthy and working out. Last week I talked about how certain hormones are key to have at optimal levels in order to assist your weight loss. Today I wanted to talk about your METABOLISM, and how your diet and lifestyle choices can either boost or slow down your metabolism. Because ultimately, a strong metabolism helps you to burn more calories, balance blood sugar and regulate hormones, all of which affect your weight (and overall health!).

Unfortunately, as we get older, our metabolism is sadly impacted. However, there is still a lot you can do to boost your metabolism. It’s all about feeding the mitochondria in your cells, which are what burn calories and drive your metabolism.

Read More

Struggling With Breakfast? 4 Easy, Healthy Breakfasts to Keep You Full All Morning

Happy Wednesday Morning everyone!

Today I wanted to talk about one of my favorite topics - Breakfast!

Many of you have heard me say this before, but I will say it again - breakfast is SO very important!.  It is definitely one of the most important and valuable tools for achieving a healthy lifestyle.  And it can be so yummy! 

Read More