Posts tagged #nutrition hacks

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...

Practical ways to eat plant based!

Maybe you want to start eating plant-based, but you are having some trouble getting started.  You may feel that you just don't have the time for all the prep necessary to lead a plant-based lifestyle. Well, most of us don't have the time. I love preparing new and different foods, but there are those days where I barely have any time to breathe. So here are my go to quick foods to eat plant-based:

Amy's kitchen frozen foods

Amy's kitchen is my go to frozen food brand. This a vegetarian line made with all natural ingredients - some of the products are organic and some all vegan. Their food is delicious and I am obsessed with their indian line. During winter, when it's cold out, I find myself craving spicy indian fare... So instead of going to an indian restaurant and eating potentially unhealthy food, I grab an Amy's kitchen Vegetable Korma. It reminds me of my trip to india, it is satisfying, and so good for you! Amy's kitchen uses non-GMO ingredients.

Maya Kaimal Coconut Curry

 I am completely obsessed with this coconut curry and always try to keep it stocked at home because it can turn any boring rice or quinoa into an amazing meal in seconds. Usually I will roast an eggplant in the oven and then will eat with this curry and naan bread. It is soooo yummy and it is done in under thirty minutes. I find it in the freezer section of my fresh thyme store. If your store doesn't carry it, I suggest you ask for it. It is amazing! If you always have some quinoa prepared in the fridge (you can just prepare a batch over the weekend, then you can add veggies and quinoa and voila! Amazing meal!

Oatmeal

Oatmeal is a great quick meal. I prefer buying my local brand called Baker Mills and having it cook overnight in a slow cooker. I add water apples and raisins and just leave it overnight to cook. It makes a satisfying breakfast every morning. But if having it cook in the slow cooker is way too much of a hassle for you, then go for a few packets of instant oatmeal. It may not be as healthy as the steel cut counterpart, but it makes for a quick, on the go, plant-based meal. 

Foragers

Want to drink green juice, but just don't have the time nor the will to make some? But, still think that the brands sold in the supermarket are full of sugar? Think again. Foragers greens on greens is a great choice and very low in sugar. They have other great juices and nut milks like their matcha almond milk. I love this brand and the CEO worked at Odwalla with my hubby. So I gotta support our friends :) 

Hearty Veggie and Brown Rice Salad Bowl

I am not a big Starbucks fan, but their stores are everywhere (even inside the Louvre!) and their hearty veggie bowl is tasty and completely plant-based. I highly recommend you buy it if you are in a rut and looking for something quick and plant-based. I really, really like it!

Other great places to grab a quick plant-based bite:

Other amazing options for plant-based faire on the go are: Native Foods (try their Thai meatball bowl), LyfeKitchen (try the ancient grains quinoa bowl), true food kitchen (this restaurant belongs to Dr Weil and has some amazing fare), and the omnipresent Chipotle (try their sofritas bowl with brown rice and beans - I love it!).

 

Good Luck and Stay Plant-based!

 

 

 

 

Holiday Travel Nutrition Hacks

Are you traveling this holiday season and anticipating a 5lb weight gain? Well, with a little planning and a lot of will power, I guarantee you can keep that weight gain at bay. There are 6 items I bring with me whenever I travel. Here is what I do whenever I travel to keep my body healthy and any weight gain to a minimum (Want more tips like these? Sign up for 4 weeks of free and exclusive tips in January Here)

  1. Travel Blender: I never travel without a travel blender, unless I am 100% sure there is a raw vegan juice bar by my hotel. I own a powerful travel blender called nutri ninja (The link is in the bottom of the page). It has 900 watts of power - a vitamix has around 1500 watts - so this travel blender is pretty powerful. So powerful in fact, it could probably serve as your main blender at home. It makes great green smoothies in the morning even when you add fibrous veggies. I went on a holy yoga retreat recently and all of my cabin mates thought I was crazy. I brought my little blender along and instead of having pancakes in the morning - I would save the greens from the night before and blend them in the morning with a banana and my pre-packed superfood goodness (which is my next must have item). Which reminds me, bring small plastic zip lock bags to collect greens and fruit from the buffet at your hotel or restaurant and place them in your room fridge for later use. Also, when you book your hotel, request a fridge. Let them know you have special dietary needs, and they will usually oblige. 
  2. Pre-packed superfoods: As I said before, a little planning goes a long way when traveling. Nobody wants to lug around boxes and containers to make a green smoothie. What is a girl to do? Pre-pack all of her smoothie goodness into little plastic ziplock bags. I prepare one bag per day of my stay that way even if I don't find greens I can blend a banana (which is available anywhere) with my super foods. I usually add Amazing Grass Green Superfoods ( link at the bottom of page) - a raw and amazing supplement, some maca (link at the bottom of page) which helps with stress and my immunity, and some hemp seeds for a clean, whole food source of protein. I make sure to feed my body well first thing in the morning so I don't feel any cravings. The smoothies usually tide me over till lunch time.
  3. Portable morning shots: Every morning I take a shot after drinking my 32 ounces of water. I usually have a wheatgrass or turmeric and ginger shot, but, finding a shot on the go can be quite challenging. First, because there are no travel juicers I know of (trust me I have looked), and second because juice bars are not available in your destination. So if my research shows no juice bars close to my hotel, I bring a powdered wheatgrass drink. It is not as effective as the real thing, but it helps me keep my routine consistent - and consitency is key in keeping with a healthy lifestyle. Sometimes, I even add it to my water throughout the day when traveling because it is such a great detoxifier.
  4. Hemp seeds: Hemp seeds make my world go round! Seriously, these little tiny seeds can turn any lame salad into a nutritional powerhouse. Sometimes, it may be hard coming across a good plant-based meal when traveling. So I bring my hemp seeds and I add it to everything I eat. I buy Manitoba Harvest (link below). Hemp seeds are the most nutritious seed in the world and a complete protein. They have a balanced profile of protein, essential fats, enzymes, and vitamins with low sugar, starches, and saturated fats. Adding these seeds to salads, soups, and meals keeps me satiated for a longer period of time as well. Keeping me from eating too much junk when on holiday. 
  5. Accessories: Always bring reusable cutlery, and a water bottle or travel coffee mug. You will need it to create your smoothies and keep yourself hydrated throughout the day. I love the bamboo cutlery to-go ware makes and I have a set (link Below). You could use plastic cutlery - but who wants to trash the environment?
  6. Justin's chocolate almond or hazelnut butter packs : Have you tasted Justin's Chocolate Almond Butter? If you haven't  - maybe you shouldn't... They are so good, it is hard to stop eating them. But, if you have enough self control these little packs make a great on the go snack (with a banana) or a late night healthy indulgence. I love eating something sweet and delicious in bed, so I bring these little packs of amazingness along and I eat them with bananas. It can also make for an amazing breakfast if you can't make a green smoothie. 

I hope the tips were helpful for your impending holiday travel. It is important to keep our bodies healthy and to be consistent, but also remember to enjoy your trip and immerse yourself in local culture and food! Take a meal to really indulge and experience the local cuisine... You can always walk off the calories later ;)