Posts tagged #nutrition

High protein, sugar-free, gluten-free, and dairy-free 1 minute brownie

If you have a sweet tooth, but don't want to jeopardize your clean eating, I highly recommend you try out this brownie recipe. As I cut all of the sugars from my diet, I had to find new ways to satisfy my sweet tooth. This was particularly difficult during competition prep, when my coach wouldn't even allow me to eat fruit! This recipe uses ingredients that have a high protein content (eggs and protein powder), does not contain sugar, gluten, or lactose. This brownie is completely safe to eat - even during contest prep!!!! I promise you'll want to eat this brownie for breakfast... Except you won't be feeling any guilt!

 

Ingredients:

A measure of protein powder (the product I use called bone broth protein - it is high in collagen and does not contain dairy - see link below)
A TBSP of coconut flour (I like Bob Red Mill's, see link below)
2 TBSP of monk fruit sweetener (My favorite sweetener! Tastes like sugar - see link below)
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 egg
1/4 cup cashew milk (or any other 'milk' alternative soy, almonds, etc.)

Optional ingredients: 1tbsp of nut butter, and 1 teaspoon of Lakanto chocolate powder. These ingredients make the brownie extra yummy - but it depends if you can afford the added fats or not. 

How to:

Mix the egg and the cashew milk in the mug. If you are adding peanut butter start mix it in with the egg mixture. It won't dissolve completely, but that's ok. Mix in the dry ingredients in the mug till you achieve a homogeneous dough. Microwave it for anywhere between 60 seconds and 1 minute and 20 seconds (some microwaves take a little longer - you may have to play with yours and see).

Enjoy!!!!! 

Green Shake to Get your Diet Back on Track!

I have been off track lately... Running makes me want to eat more and because I know running burns lots of calories, I end up eating way too much sugar and fat... I find myself over-indulging often and my body is not taking it well. The worst part about over-indulging is that your body becomes addicted to the excessive amounts of sugar and fat and stopping the sugar/ fat madness is pretty hard... No wonder clinical experiments show sugar is more addictive than cocaine... (chek this article out: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23719144)

But, the excess sugar and fat has some really terrible side effects... I have been waking up puffy and feeling bloated. I decided, it was time to break away from this sugar addiction I developed in the past few months... And, the only thing that helps me get out of a sugar slump is.... a Green shake.

Green shakes are a nutritional powerhouse. When you nourish your body, your cravings diminish because your body does not need to search for particular nutrients that may be missing in your diet. When you feed your body properly, you eat less. 

But let's face it... Who wants to drink a green shake instead of ... say... a plate of pancakes or french toast in the morning? I had to create a drink that would taste so delicious, I would not be tempted to reach for a waffle with peanut butter and banana. Well that is when I came up with a recipe so good, my picky toddler thought she was eating ice cream.... 

After a week, I started diminishing the sugar in the shake by taking away the dates and slowly bringing my body back to a more strict diet. Hope it works for you!

Recipe for Green Breakfast (almost) ice cream

  • 1 large Fiji apple
  • 2 frozen bananas
  • 4 dates
  • 2 scoops of Green Protein Alchemy  (see product link to the right)
  • 4 cups of power greens ( or spinach)
  • 1 Cup of water 

Blend well and drink! This smoothie is so good even Bella was drinking it like there was no tomorrow...

5 Stay Fit Secrets I Learned From the Japanese

Last week I was fortunate enough to visit the land of the rising sun, Japan. I don't know if you have noticed yet, but the Japanese live long, they are lean and healthy, and they age very slowly. During my trip, I was eager to crack the Japanese code that creates this overall health.  Well, by talking to different people and noticing what was going on around me I found nine habits the Japanese have that are contributing to their overall level of health and wellness. Here they are: 

  1. They drink lots of green tea: Unlike the United States, you don't see the Japanese guzzling a 16 oz coke at every meal. Instead, they drink lots of hot green tea. Green tea contains bioactive contents that improve health. These include polyphenols that are powerful antioxidants (no wonder those people age slowly!). Studies also show that compounds in green tea increase metabolism and fat burning. So adopt this Japanese habit and sip on green tea all day! I noticed they drank a powdery tea called Sencha instead of brewing their tea. By drinking this powdery tea with meals - rather than steeping, they are actually eating the entire leaf in powder form - see the link below to buy!
  2. They drink brothy soups before a meal: While, we are eating fattening appetizers when dining out, the Japanese have brothy soups (e.g. Miso soup) before every meal. When you go to a restaurant a brothy soup is usually included as an appetizer. By adding brothy soups before each meal, we become full before eating our main meal without adding too many calories. A traditional miso soup has 36 calories, meanwhile a traditional American appetizer has an average of 400 calories. 
  3. They enjoy other types of protein that are not animal based: The Japanese eat some animal-based products, but their traditional cuisine uses animal based proteins sparingly. Instead they diversify their protein intake by also eating wheat, tofu, and soy milk.  When they do eat animal flesh, the Japanese focus on fish. 
  4. They drink matcha tea: Matcha was used as medicine by ancient buddhist monks in Japan because of its high vitamin C content. Today we know that matcha has a catechin called epigallocatechin gallate (EGCg). EGCg is a powerful cancer fighter and matcha green tea contains 100 times more EGCg than any other tea in the market. Matcha is basically green tea on steroids. Do yourself a favor and drink matcha once a day! I know I do! - see the link below to buy!
  5. They don't add a bunch of sugar to their tea: Now I will tell you something that the Japanese don't do: Added sugars. You will never see a Japanese ask someone to sweeten their tea. Even matcha - sweet matcha is an american invention - stay away from it. Great matcha is aired to become less bitter. If you can't stand the bitterness - do like the Japanese. Drink your matcha with a healthy sweet instead. 
  6. They eat using chopsticks:  Have you tried eating regular food with chopsticks? If you have, you know that you are not stuffing your mouth with food because it is simply difficult to do so. By eating with chopsticks, the Japanese practice mindful eating with a slower pace. You won't see anyone stuffing their face with any food in Japan. You don't necessarily have to use chopsticks to eat, but try practicing more mindful eating by taking smaller bites and chewing more times (up to thirty times before swallowing).
  7. They eat lots of seaweed : The american diet is low in iodine which prompted our government to add iodine to table salt. However iodine deficiency is still a problem causing many to develop thyroid disease. The Japanese eat a lot of seaweed which helps them to get their recommended levels of this important mineral. Want to add a brothy soup and increase your iodine levels? Then do like the Japanese and try adding some miso soup to your diet!
  8. Ginseng shots: You see Ginseng shots everywhere you go in Japan and I ended up buying some for myself. According to the Japanese Ginseng shots are supposed to help with circulation and your immune system, provide an energy boost, lower blood sugar and cholesterol levels, and even help treat diabetes. I just added Ginseng to my morning routine. Maybe you should try it for yourself - see the link below to buy!
  9. They walk a lot! Cars are a luxury in Japan, and you will often see 300-500 people cross the streets of Tokyo during rush hour. They walk everywhere likely logging over 10,000 steps a day. I have personally been obsessed with the 10,000 steps a day deal for a long time, but now I want to log even more steps daily. Want to be able to track your steps? Get a fitbit! It was the best thing I did for myself... Then friend me! I really enjoy some healthy competition! - See the link below to buy!


Wanna change your life in 2016?

Would you like to completely reshape yourself in 2016? Maybe you want to gain consistency in your yoga practice or you have been toying with the idea of following a plant based diet, but have no idea how. 

If you answered yes to any of the above, I have a new years gift for you! Sign up for my monthly newsletter and win 4 weeks of exclusive content including: 

1) Week by week and step by step transition into a plant-based iet

2) Shopping lists and recipes weekly

3) Weekly nutrition and life hacks to lose weight and feel fabulous

4) Weekly guides to Yoga practice with Yoga fat-burning circuits, pranayama, and asanas to help you shed extra pounds - that is a month of yoga!

Each guide will help you prepare for a week in January. The first guide will be sent out in the last week of December and will have the first steps to transition to a plant-based diet, 6 complete yoga workouts (including breath work, meditation, yoga fat burning circuits and yoga practice you will follow throughout the month - these are exclusive videos not available on my blog), and nutrition tips  and life hacks to lose weight and feel great all year long! 

All you need to do now is sign up and I will send you the first guide in the last week of December so that you can prepare for the new year!

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Protect your thyroid with Brazil Nut milk!

Those of us who suffer from autoimmune diseases know the importance of strengthening the immune system. In the case of hypothyroidism, 80% of the cases stem from nutritional deficiencies. In fact, hypothyroidism is known as a disease of poverty and it is usually caused by a lack of the of selenium or iodine needed for the normal functioning of the thyroid gland. But if you knew how easy it is replenish your daily need of selenium, you wouldn’t let your thyroid fall trap to this deficiency.  All you need is to eat a single Brazil nut a day! Yes, you heard me correctly. One little Brazil nut, has your entire daily requirement of selenium!

The only caveat is that Brazil nuts are not the tastiest nut in the block. I love to eat pistachios, almonds, and macadamia nuts. In fact, I love any nut with the exception of… The Brazil nut (even though I am Brazilian…). So, I had to get creative to get myself to eat my darn nutty frenemy. Well, one day I was at café gratitude in San Francisco and I had a taste of Brazil nut milk. It turns out that Brazil nut milk is probably the best tasting nut milk out there... It is creamy, delicious and beneficial for your thyroid!  Drinking Brazil nut milk became my favorite way of taking my daily dose of selenium. I drink it everyday – usually with some matcha tea to kick my metabolism into gear. It is delicious.

In addition to the selenium, Brazil nuts have a good dose of vitamin E which is beneficial for the skin, it is packed with thiamine, a complex of B vitamins that aids in the metabolism of carbohydrates and promotes good memory and brain function. So that delicious nut milk has the micronutrient profile to make you beautiful, sexy and smart :) Now that I got your attention, the recipe is below. I also made a video because making nut milk for the first time can be a little tricky. I hope you enjoy!

 

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup Brazil nuts
  • 3 cups of water.
  • Half vanilla bean
  • Agave to taste ( or any other sweetener of your choice – dates are great too!)
  • A cloth bag for straining the milk

Directions:

Let the nuts soak in a bowl with water for eight hours. Soaking the nuts will commence the sprouting process. With that, enzyme inhibitors that are usually found in nuts are eliminated. Once the 8 hours have passed, drain the water from the bowl and let the nuts air dry. Place the cup of brazil nuts in your blender. Add three cups of water, the vanilla bean, and the sweetener to taste. Blend everything. Once ready, put the mixture through a cloth bag to strain the fiber from the nut. Make sure you apply a lot of pressure to get all of the milk out. If you have any questions about the process take a look at the video or feel free to ask me!