Earth Day.

Earth Day.
Earth Day. 

Growing up I'm sure we celebrated Earth day in a lot of cute ways-drawing pictures or making an Earth out of clay but how do we do this as adults?

For many years I really didn't care. I lived in the concrete jungle known as NYC. Don't get me wrong, Central Park is beautiful, but it is not the same as the nature that I've found since then (to be fair I had no desire to go finding that during those years). But I've been reconnecting with the Earth more and more as I've gotten to live in more places with more access to it. 

Bottom line, nature is healing and a beautiful place to spend time.🍃 

I often don't go diving into how humans might not always be so kind to mother nature-between the different toxins floating around, the food choices made everyday and even the clothing we wear, sometimes it's a lot to handle. But.......

There are little ways within our daily behavior that can make a big difference and I often encourage these. To not just take a day to celebrate but to do something everyday  that can help support mother nature. 

3 things you can do everyday:

🌲Eat locally. I know not everyone is able to do this, especially depending upon your location and sometimes cost. However, this one is multifaceted with the positives including supporting your local community, farmers are not limited to growing varieties of food that are bred specifically for long distance and long shelf life and reducing the CO2 emissions that happen with the thousands of miles that food is transported. oh, let's not forget YOUR HEALTH. Local food is often (not always but often) healthier for you as it's fresher and can retain the vitamins and minerals present. 

🌲Recycle. Okay I got issues with this one as it's not the save all that we've been taught to believe. In fact it is pretty bad. 91% of plastic doesn't actually get recycled (so even if you do throw it in that recycling bin, if you can find one-which is a whole other issue) and even if the recycling does happen almost all of that plastic gets downcycled which means that it is less useful each time until it becomes so flimsy that it can no longer be used (we won't get started on the toxins present, that's for another post). But real quick the 91% left in landfills breaks down into microplastic particles which can collect polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and other chemicals that have been connected to many health concerns, including cancer, reproductive issues, a weaker immune system, and more. The US was sending the recycling to China until recently when they determined they would no longer accept it. (the environmental cost on this is insane). But these numbers are the worst for plastic- so things like glass, metal and paper are easier to be recycled so I still say go for it!  

🌲Reduce plastic use. As discussed above, this is a huge issue that I often cannot dive into for mental sanity but in short if you use less plastic there might be a chance that we reduce the amount in those landfills. Focus on buying glass and reusing it, don't buy plastic water bottles (for health on this one too) and pay attention to the deeper aspects like what are your sponges made of? Hint-most of them are made from polyurethane which is petroleum based and triclosan (another dangerous on in a lot of personal care products!) which end up releasing dioxins and formaldehyde into the soil and even the atmosphere. 

Tell me below👇🏽, what is one thing that you do that can help mother nature out? Or something you've been wanting to try! I'm so down for upping my game! 

Comfort Food

Comfort Food
Comfort food

Comfort food is defined as a food that provides a feeling of consolation or a feeling of happiness and they often contain high sugar, processed ingredients or they're simply incredibly decadent in large amounts.  

Do you have different types of food that bring you that delicious feeling of calm? Or items that bring you right back to when you used to eat them regularly, whether as a kid or simply your junk food fix you used to have? The other night I was feeling nostalgic (I feel a lot these days as working through grief) and I thought, how can I bring myself back to a beautiful memory that helps me feel all warm inside? I went for some cinnamon toast. This brings me right back to sitting at the kitchen table when we would eat with breakfast with the family. We would toast that whole wheat bread with butter, cinnamon and a little bit of sugar sprinkled on top. 

These days, I edited this to bring that comfort (emotional eating is a whole other topic for a different day) back with gluten free bread, non-dairy organic Miyoko's butter (one of the best non-dairy butters ingredient wise), organic cinnamon and a small amount of vanilla sugar from the Savannah Salt table (their salts are amazing too!). I don't really advocate for eating any actual sugar but every once and awhile I let that happen. 

Do you have a comfort food that you go to? or one that you make healthier too? 


World Sleep Day

World Sleep Day
Sleep anyone? When was the last time you slept 'enough'? 

Yeah I know.

But yesterday was World Sleep Day! It was originally created to bring together sleep healthcare providers to discuss and distribute sleep information around the world. Sleep is something that most of us know is important but don't always quite give it the attention it deserves and our bodies need! Over the last few weeks with everything that has been going I was doing an overnight in the hospice unit and woke up every two hours-it was not great sleep. Now, sometimes we gotta do what we gotta do but it took me two days to recover! I literally had the sleep hangover that clients and friends had told me about; you have brain fog, feel just generally run down, screws with your appetite and so much more. Since then I've been much more conscious about sleep, not perfect but so much better. 

These are some of the things I attempt to do when it comes to healthy sleep hygiene. I don't do all of these perfect and it doesn't always happen the exact way I'd like, but every time that I get into this type of routine I feel so much better!

💤Same bedtime every night
💤Leaving the phone out of your room/stopping blue light at least 45 minutes before bed
💤Evening routine that includes relaxing things like applying/diffusing essential oils, epsom salt bath, meditating or even reading (depending upon the book, we've all had those ones that we keep reading throughout the night no matter how late it gets lol) 
💤Proper temperature for comfort-this varies but there is a range between 60-67F that doctors say is most beneficial. (I so like it warmer than this🌞)

These are just a few, there are many more out there! Is there a sleep routine/thing you do that really helps? I'd so love to know and add in more goodness.💤 

Super bowl Time🏈

do people care about the superbowl? I mean I sometimes I care about football and other times I give zero f*cks. 

BUT I do know a lot of people that do care and end up struggling with what to eat on these big game days. The traditional food is often heavily processed, filled with GMOs and other inflammatory elements like dairy and gluten as well as hundreds of different additives that have been shown to cause major health issues. Dominos alone sells 11 million slices of pizza on Super Bowl Sunday!🍕


I could write pages and pages on the different additives and how that impacts our gut health or how it impacts our metabolism or even how it can impact our sleep!-but alas I will not (today), today I'm just going to share a recipe that I LOVE and helped me at the time when I cared more about football and felt 'left out' of not diving into some of the snacks that it just seemed like everyone else could eat and not worry about. 

Buffalo Cauliflower (and yes I know it will not be the same as buffalo wings but isn't that kind of the point?)

Ingredients: 
🏈1 head of organic white cauliflower (whatever one looks the best in the store or at the farmers market but medium is what I used)
🏈1/4 cup of almond meal (you can also use a gf flower blend which can sometimes make it more crispy but I prefer the almond meal because of ingredients) 
🏈1 tsp garlic powder (some might want less than this so add at your discretion but I'm a garlic fiend) 
🏈3 tbsp plant milk (whatever you like, I use organic full fat Thrive market coconut milk, again ingredients)
🏈1/2 cup hot sauce (this is another one that can have some really interesting ingredients so grab the either most local or most organic one you can find, preferably without cane sugar but one thing at a time)
🏈1-4tsp of Miyoko's vegan butter (this is the best ingredient wise that I've found so far but I'm so open to finding other ones so if you know any let me know!) You can also use coconut oil or even olive oil as this isn't being fried at a high heat. 


Instructions

Preheat the oven to 425 F. 

Line a large baking dish with parchment paper (if you can use the non-bleached brands). 

Toss with a little oil. Place in a very large glass bowl. Toss with the almond meal and garlic powder until evenly coated. 

Add your plant milk. 

Arrange in one layer in the baking pan. Bake on the center rack 25 minutes. 

Combine the oil or melted butter with the hot sauce (because the fat helps the sauce adhere to the cauliflower). Dip cauliflower in sauce. Then bake another 15 minutes. 

At this point I switch to broil for a few minutes (with careful eyes on it to avoid burning) as this can help with the crispy factor. 

Serve with vegan ranch dressing. I use the recipe from Minimalist baker but you can also grab some from the store if that's just easier!

Have you ever made an awesome dish that really made you happy or feel more included at a superbowl party? 








Antioxidant time

Antioxidant time
Let’s help our bodies deal with stress! 

Antioxidants are substances that can prevent or slow damage to cells caused by free radicals (aka stress). 

A few to take a look at: 

Vitamin A (and provitamin A carotenoids) are involved in immune system regulation, reproduction, vision and communication between cells. These are found in liver, sweet potato, spinach, and carrots to name a few. 🥕 The two main forms of vitamin A in the human diet are preformed vitamin A (retinol, retinyl esters), and provitamin A carotenoids such as beta-carotene that are converted to retinol. Preformed vitamin A comes from animal products, fortified foods, and vitamin supplements. Carotenoids are found naturally in plant foods. There are other types of carotenoids found in food that are not converted to vitamin A but have health-promoting properties (especially when it comes to vision health); these include lycopene, lutein, and zeaxanthin.

Vitamin C assists with the biosynthesis of L-carnitine, collagen and some neurotransmitters and can help with the immune system, wound healing and regenerating other antioxidants like vitamin E. It is found in bell peppers, oranges, kiwis, broccoli, strawberries and Brussels sprouts. 🍊 By limiting the damaging effect of free radicals vitamin C may help prevent or delay the development of cancer, cardiovascular disease as well as other conditions in which stress can play a role (so many!). C also helps with the absorption of nonheme iron aka the iron in plant foods, this is why I always add a drop of lemon EO to my spinach.
 
Selenium is essential for humans and helps with reproduction, thyroid hormone metabolism, protection from oxidative stress and DNA synthesis. The selenoproteins are found in Brazil nuts (totally most left that autocorrect to buts😜), sardines, halibut and many other fortified foods.🌰 In our tissues most selenium is in the form of selenomethionine where it can be incorporated with methionine (which can help with detoxing and mRNA processing). There is a ton of information out there regarding all that we know about selenium and how it impacts our bodies in many different ways. This is just a tidbit of information. 

Manganese is a co-factor for many enzymes and related to bone formation, blood clotting, immune response and metabolizing glucose, carbohydrates, and cholesterol. It is present in mussels, hazelnuts, pecans, and oysters among others.🦪 

There are a lot of things I do to help with stress but this post was focusing on the food aspect and some of the nutrient profiles that can help our body heal! 
 
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