Posts tagged with food:

How I Became a Morning Person

I used to hate mornings! Getting out of bed was a chore in itself some days. I remember trying to ‘get a run in’ before class and by 10 am my mind was just done. I’d be sluggish throughout the day and since I’m not a coffee drinker, I never relied on caffeine for a pick-me-up, but I’d resort to fast, cheap foods to numb me or alcohol (not in moderation) practically every evening. My morning’s sucked. And so the rest of my day suffered. I’ve come to believe that the way you start your day can have a huge impact on how you spend your next 23 hours.

When I started changing a few things, a few habits and behaviors, I began to notice that my morning’s got a little brighter, a little less painful and as a result my positive mood and actions carried on into other aspects of my life during the day. And no -  I did not start drinking coffee! ;) Check below for why coffee is not a healthy addiction. I started incorporating these 5 things into my life and suddenly instead of just rolling out of bed each morning, I noticed there really was some shine to my rise that continued throughout the day. 

  1. Stretch - Usually our first instinct when we wake up is to stretch out a little bit. Don’t you? For some people it’s the mega-yawn accompanied by full, wide arm and leg extensions (with or without sound and/or hair ruffling) and for other’s it’s a quiet squeeze of core, chest and back muscles before rolling out of bed. It feels good and gets blood flowing. I decided to focus on making stretching a part of my wake-up routine. I began by practicing a minimum of 10 sun-salutations every morning and it not only improved my flexibility, but it gave me this serene, calm awareness as I continued my morning. (For those who don’t know what a sun-salutation is check the beginner’s video by Kino, here to learn how to do this properly.) Maybe just start out with 5 every morning for a week and see how you feel - I guarantee you’ll feel a difference! 
  2. Drink More Water - This sounds like a no-brainer, I know. But I cannot stress enough the significance of water for weight-loss, health and just general happiness. Nearly 75% of North Americans are chronically dehydrated and that’s a serious issue. Water is our life force; it’s essential to all aspects of our digestion and absorption of nutrients. It deters hunger cravings, and makes our hair, skin and nails look healthier and juicier! To start the day off on the right foot, I began drinking a minimum of 1L of water (preferably lemon-water or a herbal infusion of some sort) within the first 15 minutes of rising. It’s not as much as you think, and I’ve seen frat boys who can chug-a-lug way quicker than that! ;)  Now let’s talk toilets for a second: take a peek at your wee a couple times a day, if you’re hydrated, it should be clear or very close-to. When you first start increasing your water intake, you will probably have to visit the bathroom a little more frequently, depending on your body and level of toxicity, activity level etc etc. Get used to it, a frequent flusher is a healthy flusher! 
  3. Move That Body - Turn on some beats, pick-up some weights, do a few push-ups, walk, run, whatever! Just get the blood flowing! You’ll be nice and warmed up after those sun-salutations and if you’ve got a passion for dance or a goal to hit in the gym, there’s no better time than the AM to focus on what’s important. For me, it’s different nearly every day. This morning I took my dog for a 20 minute jog, yesterday I tried learning how to bellydance via youtube and the day before that I threw around some dumbbells. It doesn’t have to get boring and stagnant, pick something you enjoy or have always thought you should try. There are countless workout vids online and if you liked the sun-salutes, try a morning yoga class or a full at-home practice!
  4. Eat Fruit For Breakfast - If I’ve said it once, I’ll say it again: fruit is the best food you could possibly eat to start your day. Smoothies and/or juices are fantastic ways to get more nutrients and more calories into your belly. I aim for a minimum of 700 calories from fruit for breakfast to feel satisfied and energized. Some days it’s just a bowl full of 7-12 pieces of fruit, and other days it’s a mega-smoothie or a funky green juice! Fruits and veggies digest so clean and quickly in our bodies,  immediately fueling the cells in our brain and body with glucose. If you want to kick-start your day with clean, healthy food that will GIVE you energy and not take it away, then start eating fruit for breakfast and notice how quickly your whole day improves! 
  5. Maintain a Positive Mind - This can be as simple as writing an affirmation on your bathroom mirror and repeating it to yourself, or making a quick list of the things you are grateful for each morning. Do you ever notice how stubbing your toe or losing your keys in the wee hours of daylight can totally change your attitude for the rest of the day? Don’t sweat the small stuff. Take each moment as it comes and let it go. Maybe take 2 minutes to check yourself out in a mirror and take note of all the things you love about yourself. What can you look forward to? What awesome creation can you come up with today? 

If you try to incorporate these 5 tips into your morning routine I personally guarantee that you will notice a difference, probably lots of little differences, even in the first week! If you’re just sick and tired of being tired all day long, a morning-makeover is just what you need! Give it a shot, worst case scenario is you lose a little weight and learn how to touch your toes! ;)  Let me know how it works for you and what your morning habits are! 

Why You Should Give Up Coffee

"Think about how widely accepted it has become that people need coffee to wake up. You should not need anything to wake up. If you can’t wake up without it, it’s because you are either addicted to caffeine, sleep deprived, or a generally unhealthy slob… But it’s not heroin and you’ll learn to live without it!" - Rory Freedman

It seems like everyone I know is addicted to their coffee. Their Tim Horton’s double double or the Starbucks syrup concoction of the season, there are so many options in today’s fast food world. I’m here to give you a few reasons why you should give it up, for GOOD! 

Caffeine increases stress hormones and causes indigestion and digestive discomfort. Not to mention heartburn, dehydration, decreased insulin sensitivity and elevated urinary excretion of important minerals such as calcium, magnesium and potassium. Does that sound like a healthy way to begin your day? Pissing out nutrients and giving yourself a stomach ache? I don’t think so! If there are other natural ways to be bright-eyes and bushy-tailed in the mornings and throughout the day, then the negative side effects and health problems caused by coffee really outweigh the claims of "but it tastes good" and "I’m addicted". Need more reasons to give up the ‘jo? How ‘bout peptic ulcers, diarrhea, constipation, fatigue, headaches, anxiety and depression? And you’re PAYING for it! Ditch the caffeine for water, juice or herbal tea and watch how quickly your mood lifts and body brightens! If you’re worried about withdrawal, don’t sweat it, after the first 3-7 days you’ll be through the worst of it and you’ll never have to have a caffeine headache again! ;) 

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Sometimes the simplest meals are my favourite! Strawberries & kiwis!! <3! 

Sometimes the simplest meals are my favourite! Strawberries & kiwis!! <3! 

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'All Hail The Kale' Juice

Well - if you aren’t aware of it by now - I FREAKING LOVE GREEN JUICE!! Hehee. Currently feasting on this delicious combo that I just had to share with you guys! If you’ve got a juicer, give it a shot & I promise you will not be disappointed! :) 

  • one big bunch of kale
  • 1 lb baby spinach
  • 4 gala apples
  • pears
  • small nub of ginger
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Juice Feast Day 2: Breakfast & Lunch

Day two of our juice feast began with a similar concoction as last night’s dinner. I got about ~2 L of juice from 4 lemons, 8 oranges, 6 carrots. Not too shabby if I do say so myself. Orange/Carrot is one of my favorite fruit/veggie combos!

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I made another version of my Strawberry Citrus Punch for lunch which was comprised of: 6 oranges, 2 lemons, 3 lbs of strawberries & a handful of blackberries. My man found strawberries on sale at the wholesaler for $2.99 per flat!! He brought home 2 flats (roughly 16lbs)! That’s what I’m talking about! Go big or go home & with prices like that, how can you not?! Strawberries are usually too expensive to make a lot of juice with them, but today I felt no shame about pulverizing the crap outta those bad boys and chugging their innards back with relish! Hehehehe! My frugivorous instincts are in full effect. ;) 

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So far I’ve experienced a few expected cravings, mainly because I’m in an environment where there is cooked & processed food around me; the smell of fresh bread and simmering veggies and such are particularly intoxicating. But I’m feeling great, lots of energy and really enjoying the relaxed, light feeling in my stomach. :) For my first juice feast, I’m really loving it! And as a bonus, my hands smell delectable from handling all that fruit! Lemony-fresh baby!

This afternoon I think I’ll make a tomato juice & a green juice. Then maybe some pineapple and kiwi for dinner! I’ll post photos later to tantalize your taste-buds! ;p 

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Juice Feasting - Day One!

Today marks the first day of my juice feast! My boyfriend has been struggling a little with his health & fitness goals recently, so he decided to join me as well - which made my heart jump for joy when he told me! :p He went out last night to the wholesaler and brought back this gorgeous bounty of fresh fruits & veggies:

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I spent about 2 hours in the kitchen last night with my juicer and made about 5.5 L of various juices: some orange/strawberry/lemon for breakfast, tomato/carrot/cucumber for him for lunch & green juice with pineapple/kiwi/lemon/apple/spinach/ginger for me. Simply delicious! 

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Dinner we shared approx 4L of oranges, carrots and apples together! So smooth and refreshing!!

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As most of you know if you read my blog, I usually have a juice of some sort just about every day. I’m a self-confessed juice-a-holic. But right now I just finished my green juice from lunch and I am buzzing from all those vitamins and minerals! ;) My boyfriend has informed me that he’s already had to take a few emergency trips to the bathroom - but I take that as a good sign. The more that comes out, the more toxicity you’re getting rid of! 

I’m not doing this for weight loss. I’m using it as a cleansing period, a chance to really let my body relax and focus on healing for a short while. Yoga, reading, inward reflection, affirmations & meditation are all part-and-parcel of my detox. :) 

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I’ll be posting more pics of the juices I make over the next few days too. As well as any more info on detox symptoms or cravings we might experience. My main informational post will be at the end of the week to summarize & give more background knowledge about fasting & feasting with juices. 

Peace & Love to you all! <3 

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Orange Juice: 

- 6 oranges
- 2 lemons
- 1 lime
- handful of raspberries & blueberries 
- 1 small carrot

Green Juice:

- 1/2 pineapple
- 2 lemons
- 1 small cube of ginger
- handful of dill, parsley & basil
- 4 cups spinach
- 1 lime
- 2 kiwis
- 6 stalks of celery

The variations on these juices are endless. Try with more or less of any ingredients, throw in some different ones, or try something totally new! All juice is great! :) 

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The lettuce was tryna get fresh with me!! :p 

The lettuce was tryna get fresh with me!! :p 

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Adventures With EcoPlace

I have some exciting news to share with you guys that has kinda been in the works for a while now. So as you may know, a few months ago I made the decision to move to London, Ontario and take up a career in nutrition. At some point or another I was searching around online for food resources in the London area and I stumbled upon Emily Peat and her business EcoPlace Organics Delivery and the site It’s My EcoPlace. She has created an entirely organic and local food delivery business for people in London who want delicious and organic local foods without having to travel to the farms themselves! I was eager to not only learn more about her project, but see if I could get my hands dirty too, so to speak, and help out in some way. Emily emailed me back a few weeks later and we met up in London where we got along famously and discussed our shared love of organic and delicious food. So this season, along with Emily and Shannon Kamins (who specializes in gluten-free living) I’ll be blogging for Eco-Place, sharing new raw AND seasonal recipes and helping out with deliveries and market stands! I am really excited to be a part of this business and help other people learn to love their fresh fruits and veggies.

You can expect to see a lot of posts in the future about my experiences and adventures with EcoPlace Organics and hopefully I’ll be able to share what I learn about local-living with you guys!

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Hope you guys have a great weekend! Let me know what your favorite locally found food is! :) 

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