Health

Summer Series: Farmers Market Guide

IMG_3231*Warning: Beautiful pictures to follow. May cause an urge to be out in the Summer sun all day with a green juice.*

I did my first official run to the farmers market about a week ago.  For myself, that means a beautiful day required.  I need to take my time and enjoy what I love to do best.  SHOP FOR FOOD.  I scope the premise and options.  Then I start picking what I like, grab a little snack, and I am on my way.  Simple.

IMG_3180

IMG_3176

If you are finally entering a warmer climate for the Spring Season, the markets I believe are finally here and with a lot to choose from.  Now is the perfect time to get the most out of them.  It’s not just about organic and locality, it’s really about getting in tune with yourself and community.  I say yourself, because what the Earth provides you with is what would be most beneficial for you.  You support your health and your community as well.  Knowing where and who is putting the food on your table is rewarding for both sides.

IMG_3229

Where I’m at it’s a late Spring haul.  This is the time for much more seasonal variety.  What we are still loving:

  • Greens – Kale, lettuces, spinach
  • Cabbage
  • Radishes
  • Asparagus

Then we have some new additions:

  • Strawberries
  • Rhubarb
  • Zucchini
  • Spring onions galore! IMG_3185

IMG_3215

With this produce, you are easily good to buy for the week.  And you definitely do not want to skip the herbs.  So many to choose from!  They have both in bulk and then in the pots, which is very accessible and practical for those that want to buy their own to plant.

My personal favorites to always have on hand:

  • Parsley
  • Mint
  • Basil
  • Cilantro

 

IMG_3204

And for my meat-eaters and cheese-lovas, we got you covered.  Most of the meat you see in farmers markets are hormone-free, free-range and pastured raised.  Since not operated by big corporations, you can be assured that animals were raised and killed in humane ways.  You are ALWAYS welcomed to ask questions to the farmers who raise the animals or obtain the meat.  They are usually very pleasant and informative about those things.

IMG_3221

Don’t forget to try out local vendors!  Seriously amazing foods.  Usually made with seasonal ingredients, they are a great way to try something new and get ideas for yourself.

I have a few ideas of my own and have already started!  Can’t wait to share with you all very soon!

IMG_3300

*Pictures from Summit Farmers Market, New Jersey.  Look up your local market here!

 

Advertisements

Summer Series: Tips to Staying “Healthy” On Vacation

IMG_3028

“Healthy” – What makes you feel great.  During the act.  After the fact.  Simple.

I am back and trying to get things moving, you guys!  My trip was just what I needed for a little relaxation, inspiration, and motivation, to give all I had to give out to you all.

This is the first post of my Summer Series!  From today until the first day of Summer, I have a few posts lined up, on how to enjoy and prepare for the hot months to come!  This one was inspired from my recent trip.  I dealt with extra heat and humidity, so I thought I would start with something we all get to enjoy this time of year.  Vacation!!

A vacation is a way to incorporate both new and exciting, with tried and trues of what really makes us feel centered.  You want that, trust me.  I used to stray very far from eating habits and routines during vacation, so much so I would need a detox to feel back on track, lose that extra weight.  I don’t believe a vacation has to be like that.  You want to feel great during and even better after.  You went on this vacation to feel renewed, inspired, adventurous.  Your health is the gateway to being able to enjoy that much MORE.

IMG_3017.

Keep to most of your everyday routines.  I used to be told that on vacation, you have to let go, that it’s unrealistic to take what you use and do somewhere else.  Not true!  Whether you find yourself in a house or hotel, most likely you have a bathroom, mini fridge, and a kitchen of some sorts within the area.

Unless you are going hiking, then disregard.  Since I was staying for about a week, I bought a few things that I could not bring with me.

  • lemon
  • applecider vinegar

*If you don’t have a fridge or kitchen to take advantage of,  I recommend water every morning and night.  Hydration is the key.

That’s it!  Everythingh else of non perishables, I used mini-jars ($5 at target) and bought travel sized beauty products.  Even my tea and salt, I was able to bring in a small bag.

IMG_3054

  • Jars filled with coconut oil.  One as my body and face moisturizer.  Another for oil pulling.
  • Jar of deodorant.  I make mine in bulk, so needed only a bit.
  • Store bought cleanser/toner.  This is good to limit extra oils, since you would be at risk of spilling during travel.
  • Mini dry brush for everyday skin and body detox.
  • Triphala.  My morning digestion supplement

If you happen to have a fridge, take advantage, please! I like to keep to light snacks.  Lots of fruit.  With no kitchen, going out to eat is inevitable.  But even you eat right in between, and keep to just one splurge meal, the only thing you are going to crave after is a home cooked meal.

  • Fruits.  Bananas, apples, oranges.  If you have a fridge, pineapples and berries are a great addition!
  • Rice chips and hummus
  • Granola and yogurt
IMG_3023

Chia Seed Pudding (check my recipe page!)

IMG_3063

Did you know that travel and different surroundings can effect you regardless if you are eating right or not? Everything from your digestion to skin can be impacted.  We are sensitive creatures.  The good news is that even one simple product or food can help that.

Aloe vera became my go to.  My digestion wasn’t perfect leaving so a couple of days in I had to take action.  Alittle bit cut up to sooth bloat and constipation.  It worked like magic.  Since I was also in the sun, I used it as a soothing ointment for my face and neck.  The most sensitive parts of my body.

So here are some of my favorites.  Whatever is your morning beverage and your favorite cleanser, stick with it!  Vacations should be packed with what you want.  Whether relaxing or adventure.  Feeling great is part of the package that I hope you signed up for!

IMG_3129

 

 

My Favorite Teas, Tonics, and More!

IMG_2401Photo by Maryanne Guinto

I believe that everyday your body has the opportunity to cleanse and heal itself.  Through mindful practices that soon become habits, your body can instantly start to change for the better.  From the inside out, you may experience more energy, better skin, and overall better feeling about not just your body.

Here are some of my tried and true favorites.  For only a week, to maybe a consistent healthy ritual, how long is up to you and how you want to feel.

Morning:

Warm Lemon Water with ACV and Turmeric

  • 1/2 lemon
  • 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric

Green Juice

  • kale
  • spinach
  • parsley
  • apple
  • ginger
  • lemon

Smoothie

  • kale
  • pineapple chunks
  • mango
  • almond milk/coconut water
  • avocado
  • flaxseeds

 

Day:

Cleansing Water

  • Slices of cucumber
  • fresh parsley
  • lemon
  • pitcher of water

Beet Juice

  • beets
  • carrots
  • apple
  • ginger
  • lemon

 

Night:

Tea Packets (or fresh)

  1. Milk Thistle (liver cleansing)
  2. Dandelion (spring detoxing)
  3. Ginger (gut health)

Turmeric Latte

  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • cinnamon
  • raw honey

PS.  What are your go to superfoods??  What would you add?  Take out?  I think this is a basis, but feel free to have a little *healthy* fun!

 

Lovin’

IMG_0920

I wanted to start the week with a little something positive, a little something different.  After a world wind of emotions and events, there are a few things I have remained faithful to, admired, and learned to love through out my blogging years.

Sometime soon, I would love for this to become a weekend thing.  There are just so many randoms and pictures I take within a week and never get to share!  For now this will do!

IMG_0927

Food Blogs!

Ya’ll know, or will soon know, I started as a daily blogger of food.  From that, it turned into how I experimented in the kitchen, baking, trying new recipes, and different types of food.  Some came from books, but I’ve always been big on food blogs!  They taught me to love the process, presentation, and of course taste of homemade kickass creations.  Some of my favorites:

How Sweet It Is.  Love! Making mouthwatering, drool worthy, gluttonous(?) creations.  Seriously think peanut butter and bacon cookies.  Wha?!?!

Joy the Baker.  A California girl with a southern heart in my eyes.  Basically how I perceive my North Eastern self in love with all things tropical.

A Cozy Kitchen.  The name says it all.  Beauty and taste all in one.

Lady and Pups.  I really just look at this blog as a dreamer.  Goddamn so intricate, but looks so worth it.  Just need to find someone to cook for me like this 😉

IMG_3453Sweet Potato Bread with Pecan Streusel.  My very own, and can’t wait to recreate this month! Keep a look out!

Healthy Living Blogs!

My roots.  How it all began.  I wanted to be healthy!  Feel confident!  What went from more physical, became all mental.  Mindbodygreen and Elephant Journal are a great start for everyday love and curiosity of the healthy living soul searcher!

Fashion and Makeup!IMG_0989

Basically I love to feel and look amazing.  From the inside out of course, but sometimes even when feeling like crap, I learned to pull myself together and go about my day.  It actually helps.  I won’t lie I feel a little more confident with a little mascara, lipstick, and/or a cute simple outfit.

IMG_0914

Maybe it’s the industry of retail that has bitten my behind after 10 years, or just the extra time I have available to put a little something together.  Either way, I find it fun and interesting to play with!

IMG_0990Wining and Dining!

Yep, I still love to eat out.  An amazing mix of company, atmosphere, and food, I can never resist those opportunities.  And give a little of everything,  appetizer, drink, and an amazing course… Please and thank you!

IMG_0042

Well I hope you enjoyed!  Just a general post of what turns your girl on 😉 Food, fashion, photography.  I’m a girl who just wants to keep things beautiful.  All with perspective and personal touch.  But, don’t be fooled!  Behind all the pizza and beer, I still eat my salads and keep inspired with badass quotes.  Now all I need is a new book… Recommendations??

IMG_0021

Stay fun and funky, my beauties!

 

Summer Endings into Fall Beginnings

IMG_0501

Confession.  I don’t know if I’m ready.  It’s bittersweet for the first time….

I can complain and be upset I never got to the beach all summer.  My tan is a mere Floridian glow.  Most of my produce all season came from my home state, New Jersey.  My usual summer of festivals, yoga, and foodie finds was last year’s memories.

IMG_0453

IMG_0440

IMG_0480

I can be grateful and say I wouldn’t have had summer end any other way.  I got to be and connect with my family like never before.  See few, but the best of friends a girl could have.  Lots of movies, hugs, food, and pancakes.

IMG_0490

IMG_0494

I can be excited and say I am ready for fall.  I am ready for the cool nights.  Dark lips.  Squash.  Adventures.  Cleansing. Shedding some heated feelings.  Gaining some warmth, particularly within that chakra, anahata ❤

You see, our body’s have always been in aligned with the seasons.  Yes, as the human race we have steered off a bit (or a lot) but we can try and get there again, easy.  Every spring, we lighten up through weight and food.  We come out of our shell and get a bit more active and social.

IMG_0419

Then, come Fall, we await the pumpkin spice doughnuts and apple pies.  The leaves change to warmer colors of red, orange, and gold, even as the weather gets cold.  Our activities go from beaches, to cozy walks and movie nights.  Light summer cocktails turn into glasses of cabernet.  It’s time

For myself I want to shed the summer heat.  Cleanse. Detox.  I became a somewhat intense woman this summer.  And I learned there is a difference between emotional and madness.  I want to take the somewhat heated personality in my head and focus it towards my heart.  Because this ending, and new beginning, has taught me more than ever that being tough and arrogant isn’t all that.  Smiles are encouraging, not weakening.  Hugs are therapeutic, and people are INSPIRING.

IMG_0532

Usually this time of year, I talk more about the cleansing through food and holistic practices.  By now, I think we get it. More whole foods, warming foods, greens, oil massages, yoga, but I wanna add a little soul nourishment.  What are you trying to shed?  What are you trying to obtain?  Clarity? Love? Divinity?

Some of you will be wearing sweaters and sitting by the fires sooner than me, I’m a little jealous.  Although, I guess I can keep my Floridian glow a little while longer 😉

IMG_0387

 

yesenia

Whole Foods Favorites

Hey heyy!

Well it is finally here! Spring!!  This Friday will mark the start of a new season, new moon, solar eclipse, and end to the Zodiac Year.  How’s all that for a Friday?  I will most definitely be celebrating 😉

So around this time, it is most popular to talk about slimming down, detoxes, and change of diet.  All very interesting (some of my favorite things to talk about), but I thought we try something new.  I would like to talk about where, how, and why I shop at my favorite store for my favorite buys

Whole Foods Favorites!

These are things I buy as part of my everyday essentials.  When I splurge, where I save, and how it’s actually possible to get yourself a cabinet/fridge/home full of amazing products.

1. Local Fruits and Vegetables.  I know it depends mostly on the time of year and where you live for this to happen, but I’m almost positive I stress it every chance I get.  If you live in the northern part, summer farmers markets are the way to go.  Here in Florida, I noticed quickly the abundance of local vegetables in January!  To say I was excited is an understatement.  Until I find a farmers market in the area, I will continue to shop for more local and pick and choose when to be organic.  Local is usually cheaper, tastier, and always in season.  If it isn’t organic, it’s ok!  Tomatoes and apples are my go-to organics, if not I know that most likely less pesticides and travel time were used before they ended up in the shelves.  This equals yummier and healthier produce!

2. Coconut Oil.  Whether Whole Foods brand or larger named brand, you can usually get a good deal on a jar of coconut oil.  I love organic and fair trade, so Dr. Bronners is my go-to.  I buy a big jar, usually whenever it is on sale because I go through it so fast!  Especially now in a more tropical setting, coconut oil is actually one of the more cooling oils to use for warmer months.  From make up remover, moisturizer, DIY deodorants, and mouth wash, I dare say one day I may have the guts to drink this stuff.  Buy in bulk and distribute how you like!

3. Apple Cider Vinegar.  Yes, because of so many reasons.  Benefits are endless and real.  Buy in bulk and wait for that sale!  So worth it!  So cheap and will last you depend on how much you take advantage of this stuff.  My love for ACV goes into my morning cup of lemon water, EVERYDAY.  As a way to keep your skin and gut happy, it may also be use as a toner and hair shine.  If you tried for anything else, please share!

4. Nut butters.  Whole Foods always has a sale. Whole Foods always has an amazing selection.  Try them out.  Really,  all are beneficial and tasty in there own way.  I’m all about having fun with food.  This is the perfect way.  From traditional, to chocolaty, to cinnamon raisin, you can keep it as healthy or naughty as you like 😉  Whoops!  I’ve enjoyed mine in oatmeal and smoothies, on toast, or straight out of the jar!  Healthy fats and protein any way you like.

4. Toothpaste.  Natural toothpaste is the way to go for me.  I go to Whole Foods for the wide selection, which allows me to pick and choose.  Even though I have my favorite brand Auromere, sometimes if others are on sale, I experiment.  Why not?  This allows you to figure out which works best for you!  And going to a larger supermarket allows for more customized preferences, while trying to stay on YOUR budget.  Why natural though?  Less chemicals and ingredients I don’t understand.  This helps your sensitive gums, strengthen teeth, and keep both you and the environment healthy as well.

5. Pasture-raised or local eggs.  I’m not fully convinced with organic.  I’m more of a “want my chickens to be eating grass and worms all day-everyday.”  Chickens are actually meant to eat insects and feed off of other animals (poop) and grass.  Organic usually means vegetarian-fed and which is still great considering less pesticides and antibiotics.  Although Whole Foods gives me the selection I crave, so I may make my own decisions on how I like my eggs.  I’ve noticed that most New Jersey Whole Foods have local eggs, here in Florida not so much.

These are just everyday and weekly favorites of mine.  Of course, there is so much more I love to buy and try, but I thought I keep with the basic necessities.  You have your veggies, protein, and edible healthy beauty products 😉  I think it’s the perfect time to really get to know your grocery stores, health food stores, and farmers markets.  These items and brands will not only help you transition into a healthier new season, but an overall healthier new way of living.

If you would like to know a little more about certain items, please let me know.  If you are fortunate to live by a major health food store (like myself) check out there products and prices!  I find some stuff to be cheaper and if you are one to get overwhelmed with a lot of choices, definitely check those out.  It’s a great way to try and talk with the workers too, as it’s usually a more intimate setting.

Remember, it’s not easy, especially in our culture, to spend good money on good food.  Choose your priorities.  Choose them wisely and humbly.

 

The Skinny on Keeping Healthy on a (very) Low Budget

IMG_3918

Straight to the point, no?

I decided to this post, because quite frankly, I’m living it.  Moving takes a tole on everything front the mental and physical aspects, to of course the material financial parts.  It’s a crazy adjustment for myself to get used to, and I think there are plenty of people who are trying to get both themselves and finances put together.

Everyone I believe chooses the lifestyle they live.

That is were this post comes in.  Whether you are new to this healthy living movement, trying to lose weight, or want to feel better about your footsteps among this earth, this post is for you.  Healthy-living gets a bad rap for being too expensive, which I find is one of the top reasons which turn people off.  Well, I’m here to tell you it can be, but I start with this first piece of advice on staying healthy,

IMG_4139

1.  Where are your priorities?  As someone who openly speaks about health and nutrition, I get a lot of people who come to me and say, “Wow, I want to be/eat healthy, but I love cake.” or “I would love to be healthy, but all these healthy things are too expensive.”  Well, my response to both types of remarks is usually “If you want it, you can make it work.”  What is important to you?  Is it your own health?  The health of your family?  I find that people who only want to lose weight tend to lose track a bit more often.  Start with why?  And keep on asking.

IMG_7887

2.  Whole foods become every week staples.  It’s all about the basics.

  •  Whole grains for fiber which keeps your digestion happy and yourself full long.  Brown rice, quinoa, organic pasta, and sprouted whole wheat bread are some of my favorites.
  • Fruits such as bananas, apples, oranges, tomatoes, and avocados, give you an array of vitamins, fiber, and energy to keep you healthy and GLOWING.
  • Greens are a great source of calcium and vitamins D, C, A… etc. to add to your diet.  Kale, chard, romaine, spinach (great source of iron), and broccoli are great to rotate into your meals.  Color vegetables such as carrots, beets, and sweet potatoes are amazing for your health and skin as well.
  • Proteins.  I swear by eggs, yogurt, nut butters, and beans as an everyday staple.  With healthy fats, bacteria, and protein, you can not go wrong with these vegetarian staples.  They are cheap and affordable, even the pastured raised organic versions!
  • Limit red meat and cheese.  I try to buy one kind of cheese a week.  It may be cheddar slices for a sandwich or crumbled cheese for salads or fancy egg breakfasts.  Red meat can get expensive.  I ask that when you do buy meat, please, please, make it grass fed and organic.  Not only is it more nutritious, but you learn to really appreciate the life on your table and therefore don’t abuse the power of energy, the life of the animal GAVE to you.  Yes.  I went there.  The occasional wild caught salmon is a big thumbs up as well.

IMG_7876

3.  Buy a whole chicken!  Not only are you saving money buy avoiding the precut, skinned parts of the animal, but you are gaining a whole lot of nutrition.  I love it when you can just roast a chicken and can become a meal for a family, or made for different days of the week.  My family may have had some for dinner, and then they would take a part the rest for toppings on salad or a chicken salad.  It’s a rewarding and cheap way to bring a more sustainable way of everyday meat into your diet.

IMG_7893

 

IMG_7899

4.  Treat yourself to a different superfood every week.  Almost how we like to have the Friday night drink or buy ourselves a new pair of well deserved heels, treat your body to something amazing as well!  Cupboard basics such as coconut oil(antibacterial), apple cider vinegar(alkalizer), flax and chia seeds(omega 3 and fiber), etc… are items that last and definitely have amazing nutritional benefits!  You don’t have to spend a fortunate your first grocery trip!  Little by little your kitchen will be filled with healthy delicious items and condiments.  Splurge on an organic green juice or a a couple kombuchas (probiotics), which by the way, can sometimes cost less than two Starbucks lattes… ouch!

5.  Keep active.  Whether you have an active job or an active exercise routine, that’s all you need.  To be honest, I’m not a very athletic person.  But my job is on my feet, running around sometimes to get stuff done.  I don’t like to be sitting down bored pretending to work.  If you do have a job where you sit, make sure to do a run before work or a walk in the evening.  I know for most the weather is COLD now.  Best thing to do?  Stretches and movement in the morning are your best bet if you don’t go out for exercise.  Seriously, the skinny is you don’t have to spend crazy money with excise.  Abs are made 70% in the kitchen, 30% in the gym 😉

10155528_10152141073708795_3753158840890491196_n

For me, I live a healthy lifestyle for how it makes me feel good inside and out.  When I feel good about myself, I can do my best and be a better person.  I want to smile at people.  I want to try and make other’s feel good and smile too.  I want to show people you don’t have to be a skinny rich model to feel and look amazing.

We are all people with different means and beliefs, and if you read this, than I assume you might have some sort of belief in healthy living.  These are just a few of my tips on staying healthy and fit.  What are yours?  You don’t have to start doing all of these, but maybe may try something new.  Share or think it through!  How can you make a healthy lifestyle with what you already have?

IMG_7805

PS.  Keep it organic if possible.  No greed or gluttony.  Always choose avocados.  Pure enjoyment always.

IMG_5164