drive-thrus are for lazy people.

Living my healthiest and most holistic life, without a drive-thru !


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Snack Attack

How do you feel about this photo…

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Are you immediately drawn to the cookie, or to the leafy greens?

Most of us are eyeing that delicious chocolate chip cookie… let’s be real!!… But, how come we can’t all crave the leafy greens? We know they are much healthier than the cookie that’s most likely filled with processed and refined ingredients with a hint of shortening!

Cravings are a complicated subject – and I really wish that I had the answer to why we get them.

For me, it’s cravings for sweets after dinner – and I’m in the process of trying to figure out WHY I get this persistent craving on a daily basis. Using my daily food log, I’ve been writing down everything that I’ve eaten over the past couple of weeks, in hopes that after analyzing it I can tell if there’s any deficiencies that are potentially leading me to crave sugar later in the day.

Here are a few other reasons why you might be getting hit with these super-cravings…

  • You’re not feeding your body properly – and you are lacking nutrients. This can lead to cravings of all sorts… Pickles, anyone?!
  • Seasonal/Weather Changes. Can you relate to this? In the Winter you want comforting, warm and possibly not-so-healthy things – whereas come Spring and Summer you are much more inclined to choose detoxifying fruits and vegetables that sit a little bit lighter in your stomach

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  • Stress/Lack of Interest in what you’re eating
  • Dehydration! If you don’t drink enough water throughout the day, your dehydration might actually come across as mild hunger/cravings – so drink your h20 friends!
  • For the women out there, hormones can certainly play a part. Again, you need to first focus on a potential nutrient imbalances as well…

Instead of seeing cravings as a simple ‘weakness’ – try and look a little deeper into the root cause of what may be causing them.

In the meantime – you can satisfy your sweet tooth at night with this light snack that is guaranteed to satisfy !

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1/2 Banana, 2 Tablespoons of Nut Butter, Sprinkled with Cinnamon and Unsweetened Coconut Flakes

It’s a snack FAVOURITE of mine!


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vegan cookies + 30 minute treadmill workout

Happy Tuesday everyone!

I’ve got two things for you today. Two REALLY awesome things!

They are; a RECIPE + a Treadmill Workout for you to do next time you’re at the gym (especially if you find yourself lacking motivation some days, like me)…

I’ll start with the fun stuff (no, not the treadmill workout …)

This recipe was taken and adapted from Oh She Glows recipe for ‘The Ultimate Vegan Oatmeal Raisin Cookie”

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Yes it’s true that VEGAN does not always equate to HEALTHY. So health nuts beware… However; this recipe is fabulous if you want to do some baking with ingredients that you probably already have in your pantry.

These cookies were soft, gooey, sweet and impossibly delicious!

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You could add in various nuts, or substitute the raisins for dried cranberries/chocolate chips if you so desired! Instead of only using walnuts like the original recipe did, I threw in almonds as well.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup walnuts
  • 3/4 cup almonds
  • 2 cups regular oats, divided
  • 3/4 cup Gluten-Free Flour Blend
  • 1/2 cup Brown Sugar (feel free to use substitutes here)
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp almond milk
  • 3.5 tbsp coconut oil
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup raisins

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
  2. Coarsely grind the walnuts in a food processor
  3. In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, half of the oats and sugar
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  4. Add these dry ingredients to the food processor – blend with walnuts
  5. Soften the coconut oil in the microwave – mix in the maple syrup, almond milk and vanilla
  6. Add the wet mix to the food processor as well, mix until everything is combined!
  7. Remove contents from food processor, into a big bowl
  8. Add in the remaining oats, and the raisins
  9. Roll the dough into little balls and place on the cookie sheet
  10. Flatten with a fork, and bake for 10 minutes
  11. Let the cookies sit for 2 minutes, transfer to a wire cooling rack – and VOILA!

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ENJOY with a warm cup of tea or coffee, and you’re happy!

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After you indulge in too many of these cookies, you’re going to want to try this super sweaty workout.

It’s interval-based, so there’s varying periods of high-intensity sprints alternated with some light jogging.

The 30 minutes FLEW by for me, and I hope that happens to you as well! It’s a great workout to beat the gym-blues when you get bored with your usual workouts.

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Try these out! Both the recipe and workout!

Leave me a comment below and let me know what you think.


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Food Log

Happy Sunday Funday.

How was your weekend? With Sunday night upon us, it’s time to think about our goals for the upcoming week.

Last week, I decided to write a “Food Diary” each day. There are many reasons that I wanted to do this…

  • To see what percentage of fats/carbs/proteins I’m getting on a typical day (eating less meat, I’m starting to wonder if I’m consuming enough protein…)
  • To figure out which foods agree and/or disagree with me
  • To understand why I crave sugar late at night
  • To control mindless eating

I recorded all foods that I consumed Monday thru Wednesday, but Thursday and Friday I was thrown off track a bit. That means that I’m going to re-start it for this week – starting tomorrow.

If you’re interested in trying this with me, here’s what you need to do.

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How to Use this Food Log.

No, it’s not rocket science – but here’s a few helpful hints

  • Record EVERYTHING – even drinks (yes, water too!!) So – If you snack on a handful of almonds or take a bite of your friends pizza – you still have to record it! The point is that you want to be able to see exactly what you’re putting into your body, and then you can really start to analyze it and pick out the good, bad and ugly
  • If you know that you had a slip up, such as consuming no protein throughout a whole day – write it down so that you don’t make that mistake over again
  • If you feel bloated or gassy, or have any such ‘symptoms’ after a meal – record it ! You want to address the root cause of this, and GET RID OF IT!

You can include Saturday and Sunday if you like, but I tend to get off track on weekends due to working long days and going out to eat with friends. Remember, trying to attain perfection is just as bad as eating a dead rat! Was that the phrase!?

If all goes well, my food log will be completed fully by Friday evening! Then I can analyze it further and start fixing my ‘problem areas’.

Don’t forget that you are what you eat!


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Fabulous Quote Fridays !

Because who doesn’t love a good inspirational quote to get your weekend started right!

(I’m really enjoying these ‘themes’ that I’m coming up with for each day (such as Healthy Tip THURSDAYS),  it’s getting me all excited for new posts!)

This one comes from Kris Carr, a holistic super-girl who has proved that a plant based diet can save your life – crazy stuff.

“Let’s not forget that stressing about perfection is as bad as booze, cigs, animal toes, and white crap”.

Gotta love her raw-style of writing. She tells it like it is! In a nut shell, I love this quote because nobody will ever achieve perfection in diet and lifestyle, nor should you want to. You’re going to have slip ups, you’re going to eat processed food because it surrounds you constantly, and you’re going to come across situations that you cannot control.

So, instead of being so strict – let loose, live a little, and enjoy life as it is!

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(just don’t forget to make these guys a main staple in your diet!)

 


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Health-Tip Thursday

Healthy Tip Thursdays.

This healthy tip involves two words… COCONUT OIL

It must be one of my favourite foods/beauty products in the entireeeee world! I love it, love it, and love it some more.

You can buy various brands…

I often see this brand at the Grocery Store (above).

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The brand that I use is Nutiva… also available at most grocery stores.

It rolls in at abot 20$ per jar, but I guarantee that it’s going to last you for quite some time! (Make sure you’re getting the EXTRA VIRGIN kind – organic when possible)

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Ways that I’m currently using it…

  • When I’m cooking at high temperatures.

    Since Coconut Oil is a saturated fat, it is less vulnerable to oxidation in the body (which in turn, creates free radicals). Contrary to what you might already think, it is much preferable to Olive Oil for heating to high temperatures. It also adds an amazing flavour to whatever you are cooking, especially eggs!

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    [Pictured above: a one-pan breakfast that I cooked in coconut oil. Just heat one teaspoon of it on med-high heat, saute your kale for about 2 minutes – and then crack in 2 eggs and cook to your liking! Season it with cumin, sea salt and pepper if you like]

  • As a Daily Moisturizer…Nope, it will NOT make you break out and it will NOT clog your pores. In fact, Coconut Oil will do the opposite.  It is a natural anti-bacterial, anti-viral and anti-fungal – so if you have acne prone skin – you’re going to want to try this. At first, I thought it would make my skin ‘greasy’ and ‘shiny’, but truth be told it does not. Perhaps for the first few times you use it, but my skin now CRAVES it and soaks it up. A half of a teaspoon is all you need. I use it before bed, rubbing it between my hands first (until it melts) and then applying it to my face and body.
  • As a way to de-frizz my hair!I used to use a store bought serum to do this, but why bother when I already have Coconut Oil on hand. You only need a TINY bit, don’t overdo it – I’m telling you from experience! If you use too much, you will look like a grease-ball will need a shower to wash it out, so use sparingly! A little bit goes a long way! Just rub it between your hands until it melts, and smooth down those fly away hairs!

There are other uses for this good stuff as well.

They include;

  • Rubbing it on your scalp to prevent dandruff
  • Prevent bone loss in osteoperosis
  • Use it as a natural Massage Oil
  • As a substitute for butter in baking!

I’m looking for even more excuses to incorporate it into my daily routines, so please feel free to share you’re favourite ways to use Coconut Oil.

In the mean time, don’t hesitate to buy it next time you walk by it at the grocery store.

In my mind, it’s a real superfood.


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Crazy Sexy Hummus!

Happy Hump-Day !

This week has FLOWN by for me. Between a quiz, a final exam, working, seminars and all that came in between – I managed to find little time to blog. With my lack of blogging though, came a nice long lost of future post ideas, so stay tuned for what’s to come!

Where to start…

On MONDAY – My Split Green Pea Hummus Recipe (click to check it out!!!) was posted on KrisCarr.com!

  blog 003 blog 006(This particular batch that’s pictured here had chick peas mixed in as well, which is why it’s not green)

I was beyond stoked about this, especially since this is actually a recipe that I really enjoy. Most people will traditionally make their hummus with chick peas, but what happens when you don’t have any of them on hand?

I figured lentils would do the trick (split green peas to be more specific), so I tried it and it was a success!

If you’re expecting that ‘chick-pea hummus’ flavour, you might be slightly disappointed – so don’t hold it to that standard! It’s a different texture but it tastes AH-mazing!

Let me know if you have a chance to try it out.

Also, I did some recipe experimenting with a friend last weekend…

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Using my Quinoa Revolution Cookbook that my sister gave me for Christmas!

This book has been wonderful so far, especially if you are a vegetarian looking for recipes that will give you an added source of protein (it’s a super food because it contains all 8 essential amino acids). Quinoa is amazing for that!

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This recipe was actually quite simple to make – maybe because we had to power of 2 people working away at it, but all in all it was quite basic.

There are no lasagna noodles either, just quinoa! Sure, it’s not a TRUE lasagna – but it’s definitely a healthy alternative, and believe me there was NO shortage of taste (I know because I’m eating the leftovers right now!)

It kind of fell apart in the photos…. oops!

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This recipe has been modified slightly from the original in the cookbook Quinoa Revolution

What You’ll Need.

  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 Tbsp. Olive Oil
  • 1 chopped onion
  • 1 cup of mushrooms
  • Garlic, minced
  • 2 cups of tomato sauce
  • 2 cups of cottage cheese
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup of parmasean
  • 2 Tbsp. Basil and Oregano
  • 1 chopped Zucchini
  • 2 cups of fresh spinach
  • 1 cup of mozzarella

Directions.

  1. Preheat oven to 350, spray a square casserole dish with cooking spray
  2. Cook quinoa according to directions, and spread at the bottom of the pan
  3. Saute onions, mushrooms, garlic and tomato sauce in a pan
  4. Combine cottage cheese, egg, Parmesan and herbs
  5. Spread 1/3rd of the tomato sauce over the quinoa, then layer ALL zucchini, then all of the cottage cheese mix, then 1/3rd of the tomato sauce mix, then the spinach, then the tomato sauce remainder, and finally the mozzarella on top!
  6. Bake for 35 minutes, until the cheese is  bubbling!

Good Luck!

You won’t be sorry if you try this, and you’ll have lunch leftovers for a couple of days (and who doesn’t love that!)

What’s your favourite way to eat quinoa?

Leave me a comment below, I love to hear from whoever is reading!


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Songs to FUEL your workout!

Music can either make or break my workout. How about you?

For example, think about the last group exercise class that you attended. Can you remember the music that the instructor played?

I used to avoid certain classes for the mere fact that I knew the music wouldn’t motivate me- and so I make a conscious effort to keep my tunes current, fresh and fun.

If you’re in need of some new songs to throw on to your iTunes (perhaps for your upcoming 1/2 marathon training or to do some heavy lifting) check out my new favorites;

There’s a sample !

I always resort back to a few sites like 8tracks or Songza if I’m short on ideas!

Hope everyone had an amazing weekend, I’ll be back with more recipes and holistic tips this week.