Youth is when you’re allowed to stay up late on New Year’s Eve. Middle age is when you’re forced to. -Bill Vaughan
My husband and I are soooo excited for New Year’s Eve! I know you are dying for me to tell you what we are doing, right?
We are renting our favorite movies, ordering Sushi (I seriously need to have my mercury levels checked) and cuddling on the couch.
Seriously, we are excited about these plans. I’m not even kidding you.
Blame it on middle age.
Anyway, I just found this drink that I’m going to make Saturday night and thought I’d share it with you. Yes, of course it’s healthy! :)
VIRGIN STRAWBERRY MARGARITA
2 cups fresh or frozen strawberries
1 lime, juiced
2 tbsp raw honey
12 oz water
12 ice cubes
Place strawberries, lime, honey and half the water in a blender.
Add ice and remaining water gradually to reach desired consistency.
Add more ice if desired.
For those of you asking where the alcohol is; you’re most likely missing the point…so just add your favorite liquor!
Wishing you a FUN AND SAFE New Year’s Eve!
*Revised recipe from Oxygen magazine.
*Image from Wordans
In around 10 days, (depending on your time zone and/or your mathematical skills) I will be 44 years old.
In my 30’s, I felt like I was in my 40’s and now that I’m in my 40’s, I feel like I’m in my 30’s. All thanks to good nutrition! Just think how I will feel when I start working out consistently…
Let me get back to my birthday. I love my birthday. Seriously, I do. Some of you may have heard me say it before and I’ll say it again…I prefer my special day to last about a week straight. Maybe because I was adopted, I appreciate the fact that I was even born at all. That was deep, huh?
Anyway, you can imagine my excitement when I received a gift 10 days (give or take) early! On top of that it was books and on top of that, it was books about nutrition. What an awesome way to start my 44th birthday!
Thanks’ to my Irish Twin (Jeny) I’ll have some new healthy recipes to share very soon.
Age is a matter of feeling, not of years. -George William Curtis
I love change. Not coin change, but change as in new beginnings. Coin change just annoys me until I can head home and put it in my stolen Hinckley and Schmitt water jug.
Let me back track a minute. A few changes in life I don’t particularly care for. I don’t like when the grocery store changes the layout of the store so that I can’t find anything for the next two months. I don’t like when the military constantly changes my primary care doctor and then I have to explain my health history over and over again. I don’t like when my favorite TV shows change their time slot or worse yet, they get canceled. AND last but definitely not least…. TIME CHANGE. Who ever thought that was a good idea???
Other than that, I love change.
I love new and fresh beginnings so the New Year is like frosting on the cake for me. I actually don’t eat frosting or cake but humus on a gluten-free vegan cracker doesn’t quite create the same effect, does it?
I’ve already made my list of goals for 2012. Some would say this is crazy since the world is supposedly coming to end (12-21-12) but I’m forever an optimist.
Re-do my address book. It’s a mess. UPDATE 2-13-2012: Complete
Organize family pictures and scrapbooks. Granted this has been on every single one of my “fresh start” lists since the 1900’s. UPDATE 2-13-2012: Complete
Visit daughter in South Korea before daughter decides to move to some other country. UPDATE 2-13-2012: Plane tickets bought
Spend time with my son before he has to go back overseas.
Develop a successful “move back to the States” (September 2012) plan for my husband and I. That could possibly change, but we love change, right? UPDATE 2-13-2012: Complete
Nutrition and Fitness Goals
I’m starting a 4-week “detox” on Jan 2nd. I feel myself slipping a little so it’s time to tighten the belt. Literally. UPDATE 2-13-2012: Complete
I’m seriously thinking about starting a 6-week boot camp program. Okay, so this is totally out of my comfort zone. First of all, I’m the laziest healthy eater-nutrition crazed lunatic on the face of this earth (I rather do anything but exercise) and second, I don’t really “like” the gym. Why, you ask? One word sums it all up…. GERMS. UPDATE 2-13-2012: Injured first week and could not complete.
I’m going to start an 8-month journey to obtain my personal training certification. Quit laughing. It’s a long story but it will help me to fulfill another goal that I’ve been longing to achieve. With that said, it’s probably a good idea to get back in the gym. Like it or not. UPDATE 2-13-2012: Started program only to find out, I’m really not interested enough in exercise to be a personal trainer so I need to continue to focus on my passion; healthy food! I’m so excited!
Continue to search (and create) for the “least amount of ingredients” recipes that can accommodate people with food intolerances. UPDATE 2-13-2012: Continuous!
Do you have any New Year’s resolutions? Personal goals? Things you want to do before 12-21-12? :) UPDATE 2-13-2012: How are you doing on your resolutions?
The New Year is approaching and I’ve had a lot of request to post the detox diet I did this past summer. I wouldn’t necessarily call this a “diet” since I’ve incorporated most of the plan into the way I eat on a daily basis.
By eliminating the “junk” I was able to figure out what food I was intolerant to and from there, I significantly improved my health. As an extra bonus, I lost weight without ever starving myself. In fact, I felt like I was constantly eating. I do not count calories or anything else for that matter and I don’t limit my portion sizes and you will see why in a minute.
I created this plan for myself after reading a million (okay, I may be exaggerating a little) books and taking the information that I felt was the best and combining it into one program. Most of you know; I like simple and quick approaches to almost everything I do in life.
*IMPORTANT INFO: As you know, I am not a doctor so I can only tell you what I did and what worked for me. If you decide to try my own plan and you have any medical conditions, I urge you to talk to your doctor first. I was taking blood pressure medicine before I started this and if I didn’t monitor my BP, I would have never known that I needed to go off the meds. My blood pressure dropped that much.
1. I followed this plan (no cheating) for 30 days.
2. If you need to have a warm meal save it for dinner. Try to eat as much raw food as possible.
3. Awkward subject but needs to be addressed especially for those of you that work outside the home. You are going to have to go number 1 & 2 (as we called it growing up) more than usual so just be aware of where closest bathrooms are located. The more you go, the more you are flushing out and eliminating the toxins.
4. Finish eating 12 hours before you wake up in the morning. That gives your body long enough to detox throughout the night. Example: If you wake up at 7 every morning than quit eating at 7 the evening before.
5. After 30 days I gradually added healthy fats to my diet (example: olive oil and nuts) and I can tolerate fish, so I added that back a couple of days a week. Pay attention to the food you add back into your diet and see how it makes you feel. For those of you that are trying to figure out if you are intolerant to a certain food category (ex: dairy) add back one food a week, that way you will know which food is the trouble maker.
6. Physical Activity: Walk 30-45 minutes a day at least 3x’s a week. Be careful not to overexert yourself while you are eating this way.
7. You can’t keep eating and drinking the same things you have always been and think you are ever going to feel better or lose weight. You’re not. I seriously despised vegetables but until I made them the main staple in my diet, I couldn’t lose a pound and felt absolutely horrible for years. Even now, I can totally tell when I’m not eating enough raw food.
8. I always wait at least one hour after a meal before I start drinking water.
9. The month of January, I will try to post-easy recipes that you can make while you are eating this way.
10. First, I’ll tell you what food I eliminated and then I’ll tell you what I added to my diet.
ELIMINATE (threw it all out for 30 days)
Meat (including fish)
All dairy products (butter, milk, yogurt, cheese, etc.)
Cookies, cakes, pie, ice cream, candy
Chips and most crackers*
Nuts including nut butter and nut milks
*Looking through my notes, I came across two exceptions that I made and it worked out well for me. I would eat a little hummus, which does have some oil in it. I would also eat a handful of Mary’s Gone Crackers, which are really mostly seeds.
FOOD I ATE
Quinoa, brown or wild Rice
Potatoes (Especially sweet potatoes)
Seeds (be aware of the sodium in them)
Decaffeinated, unsweetened tea
2 ounces of 70% or higher cocoa dark chocolate a day
UNLIMITED FOOD (ate as much as I wanted)
All types of lettuce
*Always eat fruit on an empty stomach
Brown and wild rice (I saved it for dinner)
Beans (black, kidney, ect)
Herbs and Spices (watch the sodium)
QUICK EXAMPLE OF DAILY MENU
Upon waking: 8-12 ounces of hot water with lemon. It’s very important that you drink this to help detox your body. If you don’t have time in the morning, at least drink one bottle of water!
Breakfast: Green light smoothie (link below) Yes, you drink it all!
One hour later: At least 8-12 ounces of water
Snack (if needed): Handful of seeds or maybe some cut up veggies
Lunch: HUGE salad with all the veggies you love! Eat as much salad and veggies as you can and don’t forget to treat yourself with a little piece of dark chocolate.
One hour later: At least 8-12 ounces of water
Snack: A handful of red peppers with humus.
Dinner: Start with a veggie (at least 2 different one’s) than add a grain or other starch (quinoa, rice, potato). Include beans! Again, go ahead and treat yourself with a little piece of dark chocolate.
One-hour later- At least 8-12 ounces of water
Snack (if needed): Blueberry, banana and rice milk smoothie (8oz).
POSSIBLE DETOX SYMPTOMS (usually only last a few days)
Dizziness (I did experience this for a few days and found that drinking more water helped)
Fatigue (I had the complete opposite happen. I had WAY more energy!)
Nausea (Did not experience this)
Headache (Again the opposite happened, the headaches I was experiencing before I started eating this way, disappeared.)
My husband and I are starting this again on Jan 2nd 2012. I’ll post this twice before that day so those of you that want to follow along with us, can start preparing. If you take away one thing (after 30 days), I hope it’s that you realize (if you haven’t already) how important it is to consume a lot of vegetables in your diet.
Here’s to good health in the New Year! CHEERS!
I’m lactose and dairy intolerant so the thought of eating cheese is quite frightening. UNTIL NOW! I found this awesome recipe in the Vitamix recipe book that was included with my new Vitamix. It’s so creamy and taste scrumptious. Who would have thought you can make “cheese” out of cashews?
*When I share Vitamix recipes, I’m going to use the instructions they provide, so you will have to adjust them to the type of blender you use (if it’s not a Viatmix). Switching your speed from low to high.
2 cups raw cashews, soaked for 2 hours
1/2 to 3/4 cups of purified water
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 teaspoon chopped garlic
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 cup green onions
Place all ingredients , except onions, into blender in order listed and secure lid
Select Variable 1
Turn machine on and quickly increase speed to Variable 10, then to high
Blend for 30-40 seconds, using the tamper to press the ingredients into the blades (blended pretty well without doing this)
Stop machine, remove lid and add onions. Secure lid and select Variable 3
Turn machine on and off to add onions to mixture
After I made this cheese without any lactose or dairy involved, I moved on to their nacho cheese recipe. After I revise it a little, I will post it as well. Stay tuned. :)
*Slightly revised recipe from Vitamix live fresh recipes
My husband lived in Japan for four years so he’s always passing on healthy living information that he learned from that country. I’m not sure why it took him 10 years to introduce me to Aloe Vera Water but better late than never, right? Anyway, last night we went out to dinner with our friends J&J (for sushi) and we all enjoyed some Aloe Vera water. One of the J’s text me this morning inquiring about the benefits of Aloe Water, so I thought I’d share the info and write a quick post on it.
Benefits of Aloe Vera Water:
May lower cancer risk
Potential to lower high cholesterol
Eases arthritis pain
Helps relieve muscle and joint pain
Helps treat constipation
Ability to help digestive disorders
Boost immune system
Natural detoxifying abilities
Lowers high blood pressure in a natural way
Best natural “sports drink” that aids in electrolyte balance
Enhances skin health (a way to get that “glow”)
I’ve read that you get more benefits from using the Aloe Vera gel and found this recipe to make your own Aloe Vera Water. I’m excited to make my own!
8 ounces of distilled water
2 ounces of Aloe Vera gel
Add ingredients to water bottle and shake well.
If you buy Aloe Vera water, I personally would check the label to see if there is anything added besides the Aloe and water. I’m sure they are all different and you never know if some companies are trying to sneak in some un-natural sugar or ingredients.
I’ve very interested in this wonder plant and would like to learn more about it. If any of you have more information, please feel free to leave me some comments.
I’m thinking some homemade Aloe Vera water will be a nice treat to our detox diet this January 1st. :)
“Four vegetables are indispensable for the well-being of man; Wheat, the grape, the olive and aloe. The first nourishes him, the second raises his spirit, the third brings him harmony, the fourth cures him.” -Christopher Columbus (1451-1506)
I’ve known for years, that I am lactose and dairy intolerant but it took me until this year to take it seriously. I was “known” for my love of ice cream and I actually felt like I lost a part of my identity when I gave it up for good. Recently, I came across the recipe below and I can now say, I am complete….once again.
1/4 cup Almond Milk
1 cup thawed frozen sweet Cherries
3 frozen peeled Banana’s
1/2 teaspoon Vanilla
Place all ingredients in blender in order listed.
If you have a Vitamix, select Variable 1 otherwise, start on low.
Turn machine on and quickly increase speed to Variable 10, then to High.
Blend for 30-60 seconds.
Revised version from Vitamix
I haven’t fallen in love with a kitchen appliance since I left my double oven in Georgia (10 years ago) but the Vitamix Turbo Blend VS has captured my heart. I can’t believe the time I wasted grinding up fruits and vegetables in my Osterizer blender. Don’t get me wrong, the old-timer kept on ticking, but it definitely didn’t make my life any easier.
The Vitamix has Superman powers. I’m not even exaggerating. The vegetable/fruit smoothie I’ve been drinking everyday for the past 6 months taste even better and smoother than ever! A smoother, smoothie. lol According to the instructions, this thing could almost replace every appliance in your kitchen (I’ll keep you posted on that one). Anyway, it’s well worth the money.
So in honor of the almighty new blender, I’ve posted a new smoothie recipe. It goes against my 5 ingredients or less rule, but it’s chocolate and delicious and well, it’s chocolate and delicious. I would limit myself to this one as just a treat or a dessert.
1/2 cup almond or rice milk
1/2 cup of pomegranate or acai juice
Handful of spinach
1 medium banana
1 tablespoon natural unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tablespoon flaxseed
2 cups of frozen blueberries
First, place all ingredients into blender in order listed. Select variable 1 (if you have a Vitamix) or low-speed and quickly increase speed to Variable 10, then to high. Blend for one minute.
Revised Recipe from Vitamix live fresh raw/vegan/vegetarian recipes.
Lack of sun makes me un-motivated and a little cranky. Most winter mornings (here in England) I wake up to a gray sheet covering the sky which makes me want to take a bubble bath, put clean jim jams on and call it a lazy day. Obviously, I can’t do that or I would get nothing done and I would feel like a total loser. Luckily, I don’t suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) but many people do and I can sympathize with them.
Seasonal Affective Disorder (also called SAD): is a type of depression that occurs at the same time every year. If you’re like most people with seasonal affective disorder, your symptoms start in the fall and may continue into the winter months, sapping your energy and making you feel moody. Less often, seasonal affective disorder causes depression in the spring or early summer. -MayoClinic.com
Some signs of SAD
Craving sweets (can lead to weight gain)
Difficulty remembering and concentrating
Mood change once spring arrives (Aren’t we all happier?) :)
*Treatments include light therapy, psychotherapy and medications, which should be totally utilized if your doctor thinks they are necessary.
*If I had beginning signs of SAD, I would naturally try to increase my intake of depression fighting food.
Some foods that may help depression
High fiber veggies (Feel free to eat as many veggies as you like in a day!)
High fiber fruits
Fish oils (Try some salmon as well)
Vitamin D supplement (It’s important to get your levels checked)
Some foods to eliminate
Beverages containing sugar
Foods high in fat
Sugary candy and sweets
WE ALL NEED SUNLIGHT!
WE ALL NEED FRESH AIR!
WE ALL NEED WHOLE FOOD!
WE ALL NEED EXERCISE!
So, I’m keeping my fingers crossed, holding my lucky rabbit’s foot, digging the 4 leaf clover out of my scrapbook, avoiding all cracks in the sidewalk, and definitely picking up the next penny I see; all in the hopes my husband and I get to move somewhere warm and sunny next year!