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When you eat better YOU will live better!

When you eat better YOU will live better!

My graduate school classmate (André) and I decided to interview each other this week for his blog; it’s a twist on guest blogging. The discussion pertains to healthy eating and the holistic approach to living your best life. Check out the original blog post below. #SocialMediaTactics at its best!

Inspiration & Motivation for daily living

Improving one’s life is a process that encompasses different areas to be worked on.  A holistic approach is necessary to becoming the best YOU possible. You can not stimulate and work on your mental state and neglect your body.  The benefits of eating healthy are enormous and have long lasting effects. Today I am joined by fellow blogger Nekesha Green , as she shares some tips for a healthy holistic lifestyle.

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André: What would you say is the first step to eating healthier?

Nekesha: Hey Andre first I want to thank you for having me as guest blogger this week. It’s always good to not only receive but give some perspective on topics that are close to my heart. To answer your question, the first step to eating healthier will vary per person depending on their/your goals. My goal currently is to shed a few pounds, gain some muscle and improve my…

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Posted by on February 20, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

To Blend or Juice: That Is The Question

Most people that know me well know that I am a fan of juicing. Although it’s recently become quite the phenomena, I’ve been a fan of the lifestyle for several years. Admittedly, I don’t do it as often or as consistently as I should, but it’s something I’m definitely a proponent of… despite what critics say.

What never ceases to amaze me is the overwhelming amount of questions I get regarding the difference between fresh juice and smoothies, as well as the confusion between juicers and blenders. Another question I get asked all the time is, “which one is better?” My belief: Juices and smoothies both play an important role in any wellness program and I believe that both juicing and blending are very beneficial, just in different ways. The objective is to finally get in the habit of cleaner eating and to do/use whatever works for your taste buds.Image

Juicing

  • Equipment needed: Juicer – For those new to juicing I recommend a Breville because they come in a range of prices, are available at most major department stores as well as online, and are a solid name brand among the juicing community. For more detailed info, check out this juicer-buying guide.
  • Fresh juice is basically a smoothie without the fiber. Juicing is the process of extracting water and nutrients from produce and discarding the indigestible fiber; without all the fiber, your digestive system doesn’t work as hard thus making the nutrients readily available and quickly absorbed into the body.
  • Texture generated from juicing fruits and veggies results in a pure liquid form.
  • Be aware: When fiber is removed from produce, the liquid juice is absorbed rapidly into your blood stream so if you are only juicing fruits or high glycemic veggies (i.e. carrots), this can cause a rapid spike in blood sugar. To combat this, I suggest that your juice includes an even mixture or 1 parts fruit, 2 parts vegetables (i.e. kale, spinach, cucumber, celery, beets, etc.).

Blending (i.e. Smoothies)

  • Equipment needed: Blender
  • Unlike fresh pressed juice, smoothies consist of the entire fruit or vegetable, which mean smoothies are packed with fiber. Blending them makes the produce much more easier to digest than eating the whole fruit/veggie.
  • Texture generated from blending fruits and veggies results in a slushy or milkshake-like consistency.
  • Be aware: Although, smoothies are more filling than juice, they can be a trap for unnecessary calories. Many vendors use lots of high-calorie fillers in their smoothies (i.e. frozen yogurt, regular yogurt, sherbet, ice cream, sugary frozen fruit, milk, etc.). Therefore those extra great tasting milk-shake concoctions that you are getting from your local juice/smoothie-bar are less than ideal. Most are a whopping 500 calories or more… you might as well have had a Big Mac and fries. Your best bet is to make your own using fresh organic produce, thus ensuring you’re getting more vitamins and minerals and less processed crap.
 
For juice/smoothie inspiration, recipes, and fruit/veggie combination ideas, click the photo below, visit and follow my “iJuice” board on Pinterest. 

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WARNING: Pinterest board contains excessive amounts of wonderfully delicious content; you may feel compelled to never eat solid foods again!

 

**Juicer vs. Blender photo courtesy of our friends over at Real Foods Witch**

 
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Posted by on February 6, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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Faux Fried Rice: Making Cauliflower Cool Again

Once upon time (actually not long ago)…

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Growing up I was quite the picky eater, and if we’re being totally honest, I still am. Picky to the point of, I eat pineapple but hate pineapple juice, I don’t eat certain colored foods, and here lately I’m refusing to eat any four-legged animals. Its weird I know! To add to the foolishness, I have embarked on a wellness journey of losing some necessary weight and getting back in shape. To accomplish this, I’m following the Whole30 plan, and let me tell you, it’s no joke!

  • The good: I’m learning how to cook most unique things
  • The bad: No processed foods (bye bye weekend Cheez-Its binge)
  • The ugly: No gummi bears for thirty whole days. Shoot me now!

As a result of all those restrictions and my love-hate relationship with food, I had to force myself to step outside the weirdo box and try new things. Also, Whole30 requires that I learn to use and eat vegetables in ways I never thought possible. Recently a friend of mine introduced me to (Cauliflower) fried rice and it wasn’t half bad; actually it’s just as good as, if not better than the real thing.

 Faux Shrimp Fried Rice Ingredients

  • 1-2 tbsp ghee (I like Trader Joes brand but any brand will do)
  • Veggies: handful each of diced onion, shallots, chives, carrots, garlic (feel free to get fancy with yours by adding peas, mushrooms, bean sprouts, etc.)
  • 1 tbsp grated fresh ginger
  • 1 head of (organic) cauliflower
  • 1 cup vegetable stock (may use beef or chicken if you’re into land animals)
  • 1 tbsp of Savory Fines Herbs and Trader Joes garlic salt
  • 2 whisked eggs

To make cauliflower a more rice-like texture, you’ll need to grind it up. I’ve heard the easiest way to do this is to use a food processor. However if you’re like me and don’t own those “rich people” type of appliances, you can use a grater or blender.

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Sautee all the vegetables until the onions are a lucent.

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The method for cooking cauliflower rice is similar to regular rice. All you need to do is add grated cauliflower, ginger, broth/stock, and seasoning to the frying pan or wok with already sautéing vegetables. To incorporate the eggs, pour them into the center of the hot pan. As they begin to scramble, begin mixing them in with the rest of the ingredients.

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Lastly add in pre-cooked meat that you’ve selected. I’ve chosen shrimp and langostino tails but chicken, beef, or even pork would work well.

Don’t skimp on the servings because remember its cauliflower, you can eat enormous amounts and not feel guilty because lets face it, nobody ever got fat from excessive amounts of cauliflower.

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It’s Time for a Fish Fry!

Love this post so decided to reblog for future reference 🙂

talkpaleo

Come on…Let’s Talk Paleo!

Yes I said it.  It’s time to fry some fish.  What say you?-‘You can’t fry fish on the Paleo Diet’?  Says who?

One of the most important concepts that I want to share to anyone considering the Paleo Diet is that it does not have to be as hard as you think.  In general, there is a transition that some people go through when they are adopting the Paleo Diet.  Step 1-Read the Paleo Diet Book and think that you have to be as strict as Dr. Loren Cordain is.  Step 2-Get scared and fear that you can’t keep it up.  Step 3-Start to cheat because you assumed that you were doomed to fail.  Step 4-Give up.

Well I do agree that reading the Paleo Diet Book is a great way to get started but more importantly it is a great way to learn the science and health benefits behind eating…

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Posted by on July 23, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

Going Green!

Sweetened Iced tea tea is somewhat of a staple here in the south. The tea at places like Bojangles and McCalisters (one of my favorites previously) is sweet enough to give you a stroke at first sip…ok maybe not an instant stroke but you’re sure to have diabetes before you leave the restaurant. LOL

For the longest time, I thought the only way to make real/good tea was the old fashioned way: boiled, add entire 5lb bag of sugar and stir. I know many people that make iced tea this way but savvy tea drinkers like myself do a cold press or cold-brewed tea. Actually I’m “newly savvy” because I just started doing this but that’s not the point …LOL

Recently one of my Instagram followers put me up on game about cold brewing her green tea; thankfully so because I have undiagnosed A.D.D and standing over a stove watching water boil is like torture for me. Also, cold brewed contains less tannin than hot tea, so the flavor is smoother and contains more anti-oxidants than hot tea.

I make mine in mason jars at night (mason jars aren’t necessary but a great idea) and its suggested that you use 1.5-2 times the amount of tea you would normally use. My Mason jars are super small (less than 8oz) so I use one tea bag per jar. If you are doing quart or liter sized jars, It has been also been suggested to use at least 2-3 tea bags in your mix.

Benefits of Green Tea:
Evidence suggests that incorporating at least a few cups of green tea every day will positively affect your health in several ways, here’s a short list:

▶Green tea and its extract have been shown to fight obesity and lower LDL “bad” cholesterol — two risk factors for heart disease and diabetes.
▶ Green tea’s processing avoids the fermentation process. As a result, green tea retains maximum amount of antioxidants and poly-phenols.
Increases metabolism. The polyphenol found in green tea works to intensify levels of fat oxidation and the rate at which your body turns food into calories.
Esophageal Cancer. It can reduce the risk of esophageal cancer, but it is also widely thought to kill cancer cells in general without damaging the healthy tissue around them.
▶It is said to delay the deterioration caused by Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases.
Blood Pressure. Regular consumption of green tea is thought to reduce the risk of high blood pressure.
Skincare. Green tea can apparently also help with wrinkles and the signs of aging, This is because of their antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activities.

Disclaimer: I’m no research scientist or claim to be a tea expert so if you are employed by the “tea police”, have an affinity for any other tea (besides green), prefer it hot than cold or have heard otherwise that green tea sucks…that’s perfectly ok. This blog is not intended to persuade or suggest you try anything that you don’t want to.

Cheers!

Recipe:
▶ Put 1-3 tea bags (depending on jar size)along with (optional) lemon slice/wedge in mason jar.
▶Fill with room temperature water (add liquid stevia drops or all natural powdered version if you need some sweetness–FYI Stevia is NOT Paleo)
▶Screw lid tightly and refrigerate over night.
▶Enjoy daily

“Benefits or Green Tea” information is courtesy of: WebMD & Lifehack

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Posted by on April 4, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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The Failure to Plan

I love it when Oprah asks people at the end of every interview, “so what do you know for sure?” I envision myself on them dope butter soft leather couches of hers saying something very professional, something my momma and grad school professors would be very proud of, something that contains a lot of big words with long syllables. LOL 🙂

If she asked me that question today (as it pertains to improved eating, diet and health), I would say something cliché but very true: If you fail to plan, plan to fail.

I know this for sure. No matter what “diet” or life plan you are on, if you don’t plan (meals) and prepare ahead, please believe your efforts will result in epic fail. Trust me, I’ve been there, done that. Just look at your grocers freezers section, it’s stocked with tons of varieties of prepackaged processed meals. It’s a billion dollar industry because planning meals is KEY and those frozen meals are already “planned” for you. Problem is, majority of the unpronounceable ingredients in those things are not “food”.

I know committing and following through with a PLAN is a pain in the *bleep* but It’s a necessary evil that Im learning to become ok with because failure is no longer an option. I think I did a mediocre job planning for this first week of the Paleo challenge Ms. Alia (talkpaleo) has me on but the second thing I also know is: Im a work in progress.

Breakfast Plans for this week:
Egg white muffins

Snack plans for this week:
Apple Cinnamon Scones
Juicing/Smoothies

Dinner plans for this week:
Salmon
Shrimp
Butternut squash/Sweet Potato mash
Steam Veggies

Stay tuned this week to the blog for cool pictures and recipes to some of the items mentioned above.

Happy Planning!
~Nekesha

 
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Posted by on April 1, 2013 in Food, Uncategorized

 

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