Eat a Healthy Breakfast & Start Your Day Off Right

Don’t just eat any food for breakfast, make it healthy by including proteins, healthy fats, and complex carbs. A complete, healthy breakfast will give you the energy you need for a busy day.

5 Healthy Breakfast Recipes | Quick Breakfasts Healthy EatingWhen I wrote 7 Simple Strategies for a Healthy Holiday Season, I probably should have made it 8 strategies and included eating a healthy breakfast. When I start working with a client, she usually has one of two issues that she needs to fix immediately.

Two Breakfast Problems to Fix for Your Health

First, she may skip breakfast.  This is not a good idea. A small percentage of the population may be able to do this, but by far, the majority of women must eat breakfast.  After a night of ‘fasting’, your body needs to have fuel to start working.  Food provides fuel for your cells, your brain, your organs to work properly.  Plus when most people skip breakfast, they usually make up those calories at lunch and snacking, and it usually means eating

After a night of ‘fasting’, your body needs to have fuel to start working.  Food provides fuel for your cells, your brain, your organs to work properly.  Plus when most people skip breakfast, they usually make up those calories at lunch and snacking, and it usually means eating low-quality foods.  The hormones in your body are telling you, they need fuel. You feel sluggish, and you reach for a quick pick me up.  That usually is a high sugar food or drink.

I strongly encourage you to eat a good breakfast.

Healthy Breakfast Alternatives | Stop eating sugar for breakfast

The second thing I see is she eats a quick, high, simple carb, high sugar breakfast.  Again, this is not a good idea.  Your body, after the night ‘fast’, needs proteins, healthy fats, and complex carbs to fuel the energy your cells need to do their jobs.

A bagel, piece of toast, pop tart, even a bowl of cereal are mostly sugars and carbs.  This may give you a boost of energy as your blood sugar rises, but an hour or two later you will feel the crash and be reaching for something else to raise your blood sugar again.  Roller coaster blood sugar levels wreak havoc on your cells and can lead to diabetes and other chronic conditions. Controlling your blood sugar is an important thing to do in order to allow your body to function properly.  Starting out with a good breakfast can be a great start to balance.

If you have followed my blog at all you know that I love this breakfast by Carrie Brown for many of my healthy breakfasts or packing on the go. However, it is important to eat a variety of foods.

Since most of us have busy days packed with to-dos from the moment we wake until we drop exhausted, I have created a beautiful PDF with 5 breakfast ideas you can make quickly. If you are in a pinch for time, you can still find a way to eat a good, healthy breakfast.  Even if you aren’t in a pinch, several of these are my go-to’s, like a green smoothie.

Download your Breakfast in a Pinch: 5 Quick, Easy, Healthy Breakfasts to Enjoy In a Pinch.  These breakfasts are easy to make, healthy, and tasty.  Made with easy ingredients.  You will be starting out your day with the fuel your body needs to do its job…make and keep you healthy and fit.

Tell me what your favorite breakfast is in the comments below.

5 Healthy Breakfast Recipes | Quick Breakfasts Healthy Eating

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5 Healthy Breakfast Recipes | Quick Breakfasts Healthy Eating
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7 Simple Strategies for a Healthy Holiday Season

Healthy holiday season doesn’t seem realistic, but it can be. Try these simple strategies to navigate the holiday season with health and ease.

Healthy Holiday Season Strategies | Keeping Healthy During the Holidays | Healthy Decisions at ChristmasThe holiday season is just around the corner. According to the New England Journal of Medicine, you may gain between 1 and 2 pounds. Yikes! Over a course of 5 years, that is 5-10 of unwanted weight. No one wants that weight gain.  It doesn’t have to be that way.  You can still enjoy the weeks of the holidays and still remaining healthy without weight gain.

7 Simple Strategies for a Healthy Holiday Season

1. Decide What Your Priorities Are

As you look ahead, what are your priorities for the holiday season?  Do you want to remain healthy? Do you want to gain weight?  Do you want to have fun?  Can you remain healthy and still enjoy yourself? Do you want to spend time with those you love?

Decide that you do want to keep your health during the holidays. Commit to having a memorable season while keeping your health a priority. When you do this, it becomes easier to make decisions to keep your health and weight. Write down your commitment and keep it in a visible place.

2. Eat Whole Foods & Enjoy Processed, Sugar Foods Sparingly

Start telling yourself that you can enjoy all the festivities without all the sugar and processed foods.  Always start with the most simple, whole foods. Fill your plate with those foods including fruits and vegetables, and then enjoy one sugary food per celebration or gathering.  Depriving yourself is not the answer. Instead allow yourself your favorite sugar food in a small quantity and enjoy.

Get more tips - 15 Tips to Thriving at Christmas Parties

3. Say No

We all have a tendency to overbook ourselves, to commit to things that we know aren’t in our best interest.

Asked to a join a cookie exchange, say no…knowing you will be making healthy energy bites this year instead.

Asked to head an event that is going to take too much time, say no…find your own way of giving back that doesn’t take so much time, like donating to your favorite charity or volunteering at a food bank one time.

Asked to go to a gathering where you know it will be impossible to eat well, avoid unhealthy drinks, and it will go too late, say no…use that time instead to catch up on your to-do list, practice some self-care, wrap presents while listening to soothing music, and drinking a cup of herbal tea. Go to bed early.

You don’t have to attend all activities.  Find joy and gratitude in a quieter activity from time to time. You may find that you enjoy the holiday season even more.

4. Plan Downtime

As you start to fill in your holiday schedule, make sure you block out time for you, for your own self-care.  When you fill your schedule to overflowing, it is easy to feel overwhelmed and tired.  When you remember to take care of you, you will have the strength to make healthy choices.

Remember to include time for you to recharge.  Whether that is meditating, taking a bath, reading a holiday book, or whatever refreshes you, spend time in slowing down.  You will enjoy the festivities with more energy and vitality.  Check out my Self-care Pinterest Board for ideas.

Find out why you need Self Care for Optimal Health

 Sleep Quote | Healthy Holiday Season Strategies | Inspiring Words for the Holidays

5. Prioritize Your Sleep

Your to-do list is pages long.  There are parties and gatherings to attend. Work is crazy before year-end.  Sleep seems like a luxury, but it isn’t.  Commit today to getting at least 7 hours of sleep every night.  Occasionally, a gathering may go late, but at least 6 days out of the week, get to bed by 10 and asleep by 10:30.  Your healthy will benefit.

Sleep is crucial to keeping your hormone levels balanced for a healthy holiday season.  When you don’t sleep enough, your hunger and feel full hormones, ghrelin and leptin, go out of whack, causing chemicals in your body to crave sweets and junk food.  Getting enough sleep will help your body help you make healthy decisions.

6. Get Moving

Yes, you are busy, but your body needs to move.  Movement and exercise helps your lymphatic system function to clean toxins out of your body.  When you don’t clear out the toxins, you feel less energetic and therefore, crave the quick hit of sugar.

Exercising can help clear your mind and organize your priorities better.  It doesn’t have to be hours at the gym.  A brisk walk, yoga poses, 15 minute high intensity interval training, or a nature outing can all keep your body moving and feeling at its best.

7. Gather Healthy Holiday Recipes Now

When you get swamped, it is easy to make that familiar sugar and dairy laden food to take to your next gathering.  Take time now to create a short list of healthy foods you can take to a gathering.  When you take something healthy, you know there will be at least one healthy item you can fill up on.  You may become the one who brings the healthy, but delicious food and start a trend of healthy eats during the holidays.

Check out my Healthy Eats and Energy Bites Pinterest Boards for ideas and download 10 Healthy Holiday Recipes and Holiday Survival Tips.

Take a few minutes right now to prioritize these strategies to have a healthy holiday season. You can feel your best, keep your weight stable, and enjoy the season to the fullest.

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Sleep Quote | Healthy Holiday Season Strategies | Inspiring Words for the Holidays
Healthy Holiday Season Strategies | Keeping Healthy During the Holidays | Healthy Decisions at Christmas

Being Grateful Together – Thankful Quotes

The election in the United States is over. Half the country is feeling sad, and the other, glad. As with all elections in this country, it can be quite negative.  So no matter which side of the election you fell on, it is time to reflect on what is good in your life…what you are thankful for.  Thankful Quotes | Inspiring Words | Gratitude

Here are more quotes on being thankful to help you stop and reflect on what is good and positive in your life. See Practicing Gratitude for more quotes and inspiring words.

Thankful Quotes | Inspiring Words | Gratitude

Thankful Quotes | Inspiring Words | Gratitude

Thankful Quotes | Inspiring Words | Gratitude
Today I am grateful for you, the reader of this blog.  I love to write and share my message of healthy living through food, sleep, movement and self-care.  Thank you for being a part of this.

Want help reflecting on your life and things to be grateful for?  Join the Free 15 Day Savvy Gratitude Challenge. The challenge is over, however, you will be able to purchase this challenge soon.
Gratitude Challenge | Savvy Gratitude ChallengeJoin Today!




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Practicing Gratitude – Gratitude Quotes and Challenge

Gratitude! November brings thoughts of longer nights, warm cozy fires, pumpkin pie and the start of the holidays.  But it especially brings gratefulness and thanks

Create a gratitude practice | Daily Gratitude themes and reflections | Inner Savvy Wellness
Negativity seems to be everywhere lately. Unfortunately, negativity can have bad effects on your health.  Consider that finding the positive and being grateful can make you more healthy and happier.

Science continues to study gratitude and its effects on the body. They are finding it has positive effects on the physical, psychological, and social aspects of the person.1

Why not take time this month to look for things to be grateful for?  Let’s start with some beautiful quotes on gratitude.

Gratitude Quotes | Inspirational Words | Gratitude Challenge | Thankful | Wise Words

Gratitude Quotes | Inspirational Words | Gratitude Challenge | Thankful | Wise Words

Gratitude Quotes | Inspirational Words | Gratitude Challenge | Thankful | Wise Words

Gratitude Quotes | Inspirational Words | Gratitude Challenge | Thankful | Wise Words

Gratitude Quotes | Inspirational Words | Gratitude Challenge | Thankful | Wise Words

Gratitude Quotes | Inspirational Words | Gratitude Challenge | Thankful | Wise Words
Need support in creating a thankfulness practice?  Join the Savvy Gratitude Challenge anytime.  You don’t have to wait for November to create a gratitude practice.  The Savvy Gratitude Challenge is a 15-day email challenge.  Whenever you join, you will receive an email with a gratitude topic and ideas to spark your thankfulness for 15 days.  Write 3 of the things you are grateful for down on the Gratitude Challenge Journal Sheet that you will be able to download and by the end of 15 days, you will have created a list of 45 things that you are grateful for.

This isn’t a typical gratitude challenge.  I will ask you to go deep and look for things other than the typical person, place, and work that most people start with. To make it easy for you to create a gratitude practice, the challenge is at a low price of just $7. Click on the image below to purchase and start being more grateful to feel healthier and happier.

Create a gratitude practice | 15 days of gratitude themes | Inner Savvy Wellness

Create a gratitude practice with 15 daily themes and reflections | Join Anytime - DIY

Let’s spend some time reflecting on all the blessings in our lives.  See you in the challenge.

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Healthy Living Reading Challenge – October 2016

Which book did you read this month for the Healthy Living Reading Challenge?

Reading Challenge | Genes | DNA | Healthy Living Reading Challenge | Inner Savvy Wellness

October was a beautiful, fall month here in the northern plains.  I have spent time outdoors without a jacket.  Something unheard of around these parts.  The nice weather means I have been reading a little less, however, I want to share two of them with you.

For October, I chose a book by a healthy guru I follow, Inheritance: How Our Genes Change Our Lives And Our Lives Change Our Genes by Sharon Moalem, MD, PhD.

Inheritance | Genes | Book | Healthy Living Reading Challenge
It is hard to believe that our human genome was only mapped for the first time in 2003, just 13 years ago.  I remember learning basic information about our DNA, but there has been so much more discovered about our genes in the last 30 years.  It is mind-boggling.

This book is all about the fact that our genes are not static. They are not our destiny.  Our genes many mean we have a greater chance to look a certain way, have an illness or die young or old, but the way they are expressed is dependent upon our lifestyle.  What we eat, how we move, and more all affect whether or not a gene expresses itself.

Dr. Moalem makes a case for how individual we really are.  Even identical twins are not identical in how our genes express themselves.

My favorite quote from this book summarizes what Dr. Moalem wrote about in an entertaining way.

“You don’t need to travel up to the space station for your heart to shrink.  Just a few weeks in bed are all you need for it to begin to atrophy.  But our bodies are also quite amazing at recovery–we just have to convince them that we need the power.  And that’s not always a tough sell, because our cells are incredibly malleable.  What we do every day makes a big difference in what our genes tell them to do–which is just another genetic motivation for you to get off the couch.” page 42.

Yes, what we do every day makes a big difference.  What we put in and on our body, how much we move, how much we sleep, and the toxins we come in contact with all count.  This can be frustrating in that we might feel overwhelmed.  However, it can be empowering knowing you can make a difference because our bodies are good at recovery and are malleable.  You have the power.

The stories of individuals with rare genes are touching and encouraging knowing that these individuals might be the key to learning how to prevent or work with our genes.

If you enjoy learning about your body, this book should go on your list to read.

DNA Restart | Genes | Healthy Living Reading Challenge
For my local Healthy Living Reading Book Club I read another book by Sharon Moalem, Ph.D, DNA Restart: Unlock Your Personal Genetic Code To Eat For Your Genes, Lose Weight, and Reverse Aging.

This book was a little more practical than Dr. Moalem’s other book.  It covered five pillars of living within your genetic code: 1) Eat for your genes, 2) reverse aging, 3) eat umami, 4) drink oolong tea and 5) slow living. There are 31 DNA Restart Health Tips throughout the book.

As I tell my clients, it is important to eat a balance of the macronutrients when eating a meal.  However, what should the balance of proteins, fats, and carbs be?  Chapter 3 gives a cracker test to help you figure out the correct balance according to your type.  It is easy to complete.

Here are a three quotes from the book.

“….even today your body still uses IL-15, released when you are intensely working out, as the signal to stay younger for longer and help your clansmen out.  If you stop moving intensely, what you’re telling your body is that it’s time to stop being a burden on others–it’s time to die.” page 67  Movement is important for your DNA to know that you are still young, still able, still valuable.  Make sure you get movement in every day, and intense exercise at least 2-3 times a week.

“Heather Leidy, PhD,…’The group of teens who ate high-protein breakfast reduced their daily food intake by 400 calories and lost body fat mass.’  Her research also found that the group of teens who continues to skip breakfast gained more body fat at the end of the 12-week study.” pages 134-135 This tells us that whether you are a teen or not, breakfast can be a key to a healthy weight.  

“We still do not know for certain whether not sleeping enough just allows us more time to eat or whether it can change the way many of our appetite hormones such as leptin and ghrelin function. What we do know is that if you don’t make sure your children get enough sleep, this can have a bigger impact on their levels of belly fat than not exercising enough or watching too much television.  Yes, sleep even trumps TV and exercise!” Page 198. This just reinforces what I always say about sleep.  Sleep is not a waste of time, but an integral part of healthy living.

Both books are easy to read.  They give plenty of tips and ideas in an easy to read format.  If you are interested in genetics and DNA, consider reading these books.

What are you reading this month? Tell me in the comments below.

Reading Challenge | Healthy Living | Join the Challenge

 

 

8 Ingredients to Avoid in a Healthy Smoothie

Smoothies are trendy right now with good reason.  Smoothies can provide nutrients for your body in a quick and easy way. However, there are foods to avoid when you are making your healthy smoothie.

Healthy Smoothies | How to Make a Healthy Smoothie | Ingredients to Avoid in Smoothies | Inner Savvy WellnessDo you enjoy a delicious, healthy smoothie for breakfast or lunch?  Do you find it an easy way to get more leafy greens, superfoods and fruits into your diet?

Smoothies are known for being filled with nutrition, but that is only if you avoid unhealthy ingredients that are loaded with sugar and artificial additives.
Healthy Smoothies | How to Make a Healthy Smoothie | Ingredients to Avoid in Smoothies | Inner Savvy Wellness

  1. Sugar.  Do not add white sugar, agave nectar or artificial sweeteners to your smoothies.  If you must add a sweetener, then consider a drop or two of stevia, a teaspoon of monk fruit or a little raw honey.  The more you drink non-sweetened smoothies, the more you will get used to the taste and enjoy the natural sweetness of fruits you add to your smoothie. Medjool dates are another natural sweetener option.
  2. Dairy Milk.  Too many people are sensitive to dairy. Get used to using coconut milk or water, almond milk or other nut milks such as a homemade cashew milk.  It may be best to avoid soy milk as well.  Most store-bought soy milk is loaded with extra sugar. Most soy is now GMO, and soy can also raise your estrogen and lead to estrogen dominance.
  3. Fruit Juices. Most fruit juice from the store is loaded with sugar.  Instead, just add a piece of fresh or frozen fruit.
  4. Ice cream.  Most ice creams are loaded with sugar and other artificial ingredients and add little nutrition.  Instead enjoy the creaminess of full-fat coconut milk. Good protein powders also add to the creaminess of a smoothie. You can also add a half of an avocado to make it thick with a creamy texture.
  5. Cheap protein powders.  Not all protein powders are created equally.  Look for protein powders that are made from only a few ingredients with low sugar or stevia.  These usually will cost a little more but are worth it for your health.
  6. Cool whip or whipped cream.  These add no nutrition to your smoothie.  Allow your taste buds to get used to not having these in a smoothie, and you won’t even miss them.
  7. Chocolate syrup.  If you want your smoothie to have a chocolate taste, add cacao powder or cacao nibs.  They are less processed so have the most nutrition.  Chocolate syrup is mostly sugar.
  8. Peanut butter.  Most store-bought peanut butter is filled with sugar. (Are you seeing a theme?)  Most processed peanut butter is now GMO as well.  Peanuts are not nuts, but legumes.  Your better bet is to add nuts such as almonds, cashews, walnuts or pecans.  If it must have the taste of peanuts, just add a handful of raw, non-GMO peanuts.

Healthy Smoothies | How to Make a Healthy Smoothie | Ingredients to Avoid in Smoothies | Inner Savvy Wellness
Smoothies can be a healthy part of a healthy diet, however, stay away from the foods above.  The above ingredients just add sugar, artificial ingredients, and really….no nutrition.

Create healthy smoothies with a healthy liquid base, a fruit for sweet (berries have the least sugar but a banana, mango or pineapple can help you transition from sugar sweet smoothies that are more like shakes), as many leafy greens as you like, healthy fats such as coconut, avocados, and nuts, fiber foods such as flax, hemp seeds, and chia seeds, and superfoods such as mulberries, goji berries, lingonberry, turmeric, cinnamon or Spirulina. Have fun and experiment.

Healthy Smoothies | How to Make a Healthy Smoothie | Ingredients to Avoid in Smoothies | Inner Savvy Wellness

Remember that many smoothies you buy at a smoothie store are filled with sugars and other ingredients to avoid.  If you are purchasing one from a store, don’t be afraid to request whole foods and no sugar or sweeteners and juices added.

Now go enjoy a healthy smoothie. Make it as green as you can.

Join the Savvy Circle, a closed Facebook group to support women living a healthy life.  When you join, you will get a 7 Day Low-Sugar Smoothie Challenge with yummy recipes.

Follow my Smoothie Pinterest Board for smoothie recipes.

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Healthy Smoothies | How to Make a Healthy Smoothie | Ingredients to Avoid in Smoothies | Inner Savvy Wellness

Drink Water – Hydrate for Optimal Health (Printable)

Though drinking water sounds too simple to be true, there are several reasons why drinking adequate amounts of water throughout the day can help you feel more energetic and help you achieve optimal health.

Drink Water | Hydrate for Health | Drink More Water | Download

Water Facts for Optimal Health

Drinking water can help you be hydrated.  When you are well hydrated, your organs are able to perform more optimally. This allows your metabolism to speed up, which means you’ll burn calories more quickly. Even mild dehydration will slow down your metabolism.

Natural waste is produced in your body each day from basic functions such as breathing and digesting food. Getting rid of these toxins can be helpful for weight loss because toxins are stored in fat cells. Water helps flush toxins out of your body.

When you are dehydrated, the blood volume in your body is reduced. Decreased blood volume levels result in lower energy levels, which makes it difficult for you to stay active.

When you drink water, you’ll naturally end up drinking fewer high-calorie, sugary drinks which can help prevent the blood sugar roller coaster.

Did you know that 75% of the American population is chronically dehydrated? And in 37% of Americans, the thirst mechanism is so weak that it is mistaken for hunger.

By simply drinking more water, you may notice that you become less hungry.

You are made up of 50% to 70% water, depending on your age.  As your body ages, it contains less water, but the majority of “you” throughout your life span is water.  You can go several days to a couple of weeks without food, but you can only go about 3 days without water. Hydration is critical to most functions of the body.

Getting adequate water should be a top priority!

Drink Water | Hydrate for Health | Drink More Water | Download

Determine How Much Water You Need

You may have heard that you need eight, 8-ounce glasses or 64 ounces of water a day.  That may be a good amount for you, but it really depends on your body build and even the amount of exercise you do. However, you probably need to drink more than you do right now.

First, determine how much water do you drink each day? Do not count coffee, milk, and other liquids, just track water.  How much are you consuming?  Track it for 3 days.  Write down approximately how much water you are drinking in a food journal or even on a note-taking app on your smart phone.  Just get it down.  In 3 days, you should have a general idea of how much you drink on an average day.  It doesn’t matter how much, just start there.  The next day drink one more glass of water than your average.  Keep doing that for several days until it has become a habit, then increase it by another glass.  Keep going until you notice a difference in your body. This doesn’t mean going to the bathroom more often, because that may happen at first, but it should decrease over time.  Some signs you are drinking enough water: The color of your urine should be a light yellow throughout the day. Morning urine will be slightly darker. Your skin should look and feel less dry.  You should produce sweat during exercise.

When you are hydrated your brain is clearer, your body works better and is able to digest the food you eat more easily, and you will have more energy. Doesn’t that sound life optimal health?

Tips for Creating a Habit to Drink Water Daily

Drink 16 ounces of room-temperature water with half of a squeezed, fresh lemon after you wake up. This will get your digestive track moving, give you Vitamin C, and help you wake up.  The lemons should be organic, but start where you are; use a bottle of lemon juice or a regular lemon.  Just start and don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good. You can always move to organic lemons once this habit has been incorporated into your life. If you need to use bottled lemon juice, Volcano Bursts Organic Italian Lemon Juice is my favorite.

Filter your water if possible. Again, start where you are, just drink water.  To get the most benefit from your water and the best taste, make sure it is filtered to eliminate chlorine and other toxins.  You can work toward this over time.

Most people struggle drinking water because of its taste. Filtering helps, but you can also put fresh fruit or vegetables in the water pitcher and let them sit overnight to get the nutrients and give the water a better taste.

Reduce the amount of sugar you eat. You will find your body naturally wants to drink water.

Get 3 additional tips on how to drink more water, including this article. Download the Water Fact Sheet.

Drink more water | Hydration | Water Tips | Free Download | Tips




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Drink Water | Hydrate for Health | Drink More Water | Download

14 Healthy Lunch Ideas to Keep You Eating Healthy

When you think of a healthy lunch you may think of a lettuce salad or a sandwich, but there are options that can be healthy for you to aid you in achieving and maintaining your optimal health.

Healthy Lunch Ideas | Meals on the Go | Ideas for Cold Lunches

Even if you aren’t gluten-free, a typical sandwich is not the healthiest option.  Also, many people get tired of taking a simple salad or caesar salad to lunch.  There is a better and healthier way.

When thinking lunch, the first thing to think about is leftovers.  When cooking dinner always cook enough for leftovers the next day.  Take it with you, and you have a healthy meal especially if you have created your evening meal with a balance of protein, carbs, and healthy fats.  A piece of fruit can top off a balanced lunch. Better yet, have your fruit with a handful of nuts later for a snack.

There are many other healthy options for lunch. Remember, as you create your lunch, visualize half your meal as vegetables (leafy greens and non-starchy vegetables), 1/4 your meal as protein, and 1/4 your meal as a complex carb with a little healthy fat, and you will be on the right track of having a healthy lunch.  The best thing to do is avoid most packaged and processed foods. One caution is to avoid deli meats or highly processed meats. Cook your meats with your evening meal, so you have them ready for your next day lunch.  Meal planning can help you not stress about what to take for lunch.

Here are a few ideas to get you started.  Depending on what is right for you, create a balanced lunch that is easy to take to work or even create at home.

14 Healthy Lunch Ideas

  1. Leftovers
  2. Leafy green salads (mix spinach, chard, kale, watercress, or arugula) with a protein such as cooked chicken and a healthy fat such as an avocado
  3. Quinoa bowl
  4. Burger bowl
  5. Smoothie or smoothie bowl (I know of someone who has a single serve blender such as a Ninja. She puts her ingredients in the blender in the morning but doesn’t make until lunch.  The blender is easy to take to work and blend in the lunchroom.)
  6. Wrap made with coconut wrap
  7. Veggie bowl (raw or cooked) with egg salad
  8. Soup (If you can’t warm at work, take in a stainless steel thermos)
  9. Tuna or salmon salad (with no mayonnaise)
  10. Pasta salad with many veggies and non-nitrate bacon, if you aren’t gluten-free
  11. Salads with beans or lentils
  12. Lettuce wraps
  13. Roasted veggies with a protein side such as sardines
  14. Protein drink with raw veggies and a piece of fruit and a few nuts

Always keep in mind that you should have all three macronutrients in your lunch as you create your yummy, healthy lunches.

There are many bloggers who have created lists of healthy lunches.  I have pinned several on my Health Lunch Ideas Pinterest Board.  You will find great ideas to help you create the healthy lunches listed above.

Don’t settle for a plain salad or a sandwich when you can eat a well-balanced, nutritious lunch that is easy to take with you.

Comment below on your favorite lunch to take and/or eat.

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Healthy Lunches | Meals on the Go | Ideas for Cold Lunches

Healthy Living Reading Challenge – September 2016

Did you read a book this past month for the Healthy Living Reading Challenge?

Reading Challenge | Healthy Living Reading Challenge | Books

September flew by with beautiful weather. We have not had a frost yet.  That is not typical in North Dakota.  I have been outside in the evenings with Zeus.  Still reading, but not quite as much this month as I have been preparing for the Healthy & Fit Fall Jumpstart Online Group program that starts October 6.

For September’s Healthy Living Reading Challenge, I received the book, Fermented Foods At Every Meal: Nourish Your Family at Every Meal with Quick and Easy Recipes Using the Top 10 Live-Culture Foods by Hayley Barisa Ryczek, for free in hopes that I would do an honest review.  My opinions are my own.

Fermented Foods at Every Meal: Nourish Your Family at Every Meal with Quick and Easy Recipes Using the Top 10 Live-Culture Foods by [Ryczek, Hayley Barisa]

I have been trying to incorporate fermented foods into my diet. It seems I mostly eat sauerkraut, so I was thrilled to receive this book.

The first thing I noticed is that most of the recipes have photos. Typically I search on the internet to find recipes which all have photos of the food.  I find it hard to use a recipe book without photos.  If I pick up a cookbook that doesn’t have photos, I won’t buy it.  The photos in this book are amazing, mouth-watering.

I loved that there was a chapter on the benefits and basics of fermenting your own foods, but it wasn’t too long. I want the info, but really if I buy a cookbook, it is for the recipes, not the education.

I think my favorite chapter was Chapter 6, Fermented Ginger Orange Carrots.  Hayley gives the recipe to ferment the carrots. It looks quite easy.  The next recipes use the Fermented Ginger Orange Carrots so you don’t have to eat them plain all of the time, but incorporate them in other foods. This is typical of each chapter.

I still haven’t done my own Kombucha yet, but I would use this book to try it.  (Note to self: Add ‘make my own Kombucha’ on my 2017 to-do list.)

There is one caution…if you want to use this book you may have to purchase some specialty tools and ingredients. Hayley does provide a list of tools for each fermented product in the chapters.

If you are wanting to incorporate fermented foods into your diet, this book should go on your list.

The Mindfulness Key: The Breakthrough Approach to Dealing with Stress, Anxiety and Depression by [Silverton, Sarah]

For my local Healthy Living Book Club in September, I read The Mindfulness Ky: The Breakthrough Approach to Dealing with Stress, Anxiety, and Depression by Sarah Silverton.

Sarah Silverton starts out with what is mindfulness, a thorough explanation.  Probably my favorite quote from this book was on page 17. I even created a graphic as soon as I read it.

Quote | Jon Kabat-Zinn | Inspiration | You Are Enough

Two more favorite quotes from the book with my thoughts after the quotes:

“It may already be clear that mindfulness is not simply a technique that can help people who have specific conditions to manage their symptoms.  Indeed, mindfulness is much more a way of living–that is, a choice which is available to all human beings.” page 29.  I have really been working on recognizing that I have a choice in all that I do. I always have a choice.  I want to choose to be mindful and not rush through life.  I did that for too long.  No more.  You?

“Mindfulness allows us to decide whether to step on a thought train or not and, if we find ourselves inadvertently aboard, allows us to choose to get off at the next stop rather than ride all the way to the end of the line.”  page 90.  Again about choice, but the key is to learn to recognize the thought trains we are on.

The book had several mindfulness practices throughout the book.  Some of the practices I tried were 1) Eating Mindfully on page 47, 2) Pausing in Our Lives on page 162, and 3) Grounding Practice on page 164.  All were easy and good to do.

If you are trying to be more mindful, then this book is an easy read that gives you simple practices to start with.

There are just three months left in the challenge.  Let me know in the comments what you are reading.

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What to Expect When Health Coaching With Me

Health coaching is a process that facilitates healthy, sustainable behavior change by challenging a client to listen to their inner wisdom, identify their values, and transform their goals into action.” –wikipedia

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My approach to health coaching is to dig into your health history, help you determine your “why” and then coach you to take manageable steps toward optimal health for you.  I support you in what you want to do.  You will always receive more than adequate resources and information to help you reach your goals and make solid decisions that are right for you, your lifestyle, and your health.

I love to help those who are willing to do the work to help themselves. I love providing support and accountability.

If you are full of excuses or married to your current lifestyle, then I am not the coach for you.

If you are open to new and exciting ideas in health and are determined to make healthy living a priority, then I am the coach for you.

My recommendations may require that you give up certain foods or habits while working with me.  As Hippocrates said, “Food IS medicine” but can also be poison to your body depending on your current state of health.  In order to get well and optimize your health, it is up to you to take control of your own health by making your own decisions and listening to your body and instincts.

No one can, nor should they, make decisions for you. Not me and not your doctor. You should educate yourself fully and communicate all desired changes to your physician.

Getting well means making changes that may be uncomfortable for you at first.  Listen to your body and rely only on yourself to decide what is best for you. If you are committed to understanding what is going on in your body, I can help you get functional lab work done in order to direct our focus in working together.

Remember, take my recommendations as educational information only and not as a prescription.  I am only an avenue for information and support.

If you commit to yourself and instill good quality whole food changes and healthy lifestyle habits you WILL see results.

Work with Me – Health Coaching

If you want to know more about the different services and packages I offer, check out my Work With Me page.

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The best way to get started working with me right now is my Healthy & Fit Fall Jumpstart program.  It is 28 Days of weekly emails and as well as daily support through a private Facebook page.  Join today to get your focus back on healthy living. Starts October 6.

Linking up to:
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