Do You Enjoy Cooking?

Do you enjoy or dread cooking?

Cooking is therapeutic for some people, and a bit of a chore for others. And whether you enjoy it or not, sometimes there’s just seemingly no time to fit in a home-cooked meal into your busy schedule — don’t you agree?

A lot of the stress of cooking is the lack of preparation, which is actually encouraging because that is an easy fix! There are some tricks you can use to become more intentional with your time in the kitchen and even amp up the fun to enjoy it more.

You can use your kitchen time to listen to podcasts, books you’ve been meaning to read or crank up the music. When trying new recipes or having a little more fun kitchen in general, remember, perfection isn’t mandatory. There is a wiggle room with food, but if you take it seriously, it will always be stressful. Don’t expect to breeze through a complicated meal easily after a long workday or workout — keep it simple!

Best Oils To Use in Cooking

There are various oils to choose from to use in the kitchen, and the information floating around can be quite conflicting and confusing.

Olive oil is arguably the most popular option that is great because of the light flavor and the higher monounsaturated fats, which are the good fats linked to a healthy heart. Avocado oil is also another very healthy alternative which is very close to olive oil, but with a high smoking point, so it can be used for hotter cooking, which is a huge benefit.

Some other oil options include sesame oil, coconut oil, sunflower oil, and flaxseed oil. All come with different flavors, so trying new ones out is a fun way to infuse some interesting flavors into your dishes effortlessly.

What’s your favorite oil to cook with?

What’s Your Favorite Tea?

Herbal tea is a popular alternative to coffee and widely enjoyed in an array of different cultures. Aside from being cozy and delicious, herbal tea has a load of health benefits attached to it, as well.

One popular type of tea with numerous benefits is Chai Tea. Chai includes black tea, ginger, cardamom, fennel, clove, and black pepper. This mix helps with digestion, inflammation, the immune system and it contains very beneficial antioxidants.

Another trendy option is chamomile tea, which is well-known for being great to de-stress and help you sleep soundly. Along with helping you catch some z’s it can also have antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and liver-protecting effects which makes it one of the healthiest teas around.

Try different varieties of tea to find a great and healthy replacement for sugary juices and soft drinks, you can’t go wrong!

What’s your favorite type of herbal tea?

Have You Tried Coconut Water?

Have you ever tried Coconut Water?

Its popularity has increased in recent years, and for good reason. It’s delicious, incredibly hydrating and a great alternative to regular water, when you just need a little something different. Coconut water is a great drink to take with you to the gym because of its natural electrolyte levels. It can work just as well as your old standard sports drinks when it comes to keeping you hydrated, but with none of that excess sugar, you’ll find in regular sports drinks.

Besides being incredibly hydrating, it also has antioxidants, multiple vitamins, and amino acids. These are all useful in and out of the gym. Potassium, calcium, and magnesium are all in coconut water, and they are essential for keeping you hydrated, maintaining healthy bones and muscles. This is an excellent trade for traditional sports drinks, plus with lots of different flavors to choose from, it tastes great!

Wind-Down This Winter

I want you to try something new this Winter, and I think you’ll love it.

Try implementing a wind-down routine at bedtime that includes a hot beverage.  You could also use this time to read or journal, as either of those are fabulous complements to a warm, cozy drink.

Brew up some sleepytime tea, a fresh homemade turmeric latte, or even a simple hot water with a squeeze of lemon.

Each of these warm beverages packs substantial health benefits, and I know you’ll see a difference in how you feel.  I even bet you’ll sleep better with your new wind-down routine.  Give it a try!

Be Flexible

Be flexible.

It’s not news to you that things don’t always go our way.  Our workout plans get canceled, it’s too snowy to make it to the gym, or you can’t simply get it together this week to do your grocery shopping.

How do you handle this when it happens to you?

I invite you to consider a backup plan approach to your wellbeing going into the New Year.

When you can’t make it to the gym, what’s your backup plan for a simple home workout?

When you can’t make it to the grocery store, what’s your backup plan to get healthy food on the table until you can make it to the store?

Having a backup plan in your back pocket will help alleviate stress when things veer off course from time to time, so ponder on what those backup plans could be for you and tuck them away until you need them next.

 

What Did You Grow Up Eating?

How did you grow up eating?

What were the meals in your house like growing up?

It’s funny how much influence what we still eat and cook in our own kitchens now as an adult comes from our childhood.

Especially if you aren’t very explorative when it comes to food — you have some people that have overflowing Pinterest boards and love to try new things in the kitchen, and some people who love to eat the same 5 things every week, years on end.

Did you grow up in the meat and 3 sides era?

What was a typical breakfast/lunch/dinner at your house growing up?

The Diversity of Avocados

Are you an avocado fan?

Avocado’s seem to have an incredibly loyal fan base, touting their deliciousness and diversity.   They’re a fantastic source of healthy fats and 20 different vitamins and minerals that nourish our bodies, and let’s face it — they’re tasty.

You can fit it seemingly anywhere.

Breakfast: Avocado Toast

Lunch: Egg Salad with Mashed Avocado instead of Mayo

Dinner: Buddha Bowl with Guacamole

You can even eat them for dessert when you make chocolate avocado mousse or chocolate avocado brownies.

So versatile, and that’s why people love them!

So, tell me – are you an avocado fan?  Let me know your favorite way to eat Avocado.

What Does Your Family Eat?

Does your family enjoy healthy foods?

Does your family enjoy healthy foods or do you have to bribe them to eat their broccoli?

Making the decision to eat healthier is one thing, but getting the family on board can be the toughest part.  I think the most significant turning point for us was realizing we didn’t have to all be on the same page.  We’re all on our different journeys, and it’s okay if we’re on that journey at different paces.

What’s your household like with this?

Natural Ways to Boost Your Immunity

and Dodge the Cold & Flu Season

Besides the flu, colds make their rounds during the colder months when these microorganisms flourish, so it’s up to you to be vigilant and protect yourself. Thankfully, there are natural ways you can help boost your immunity and lessen your chances of getting sick this winter.

How many times during the winter months do you usually get sick? Let me know in the comments below, and let me know any natural tricks you use to combat illnesses.

Here are a few of my favorite ways

Use probiotic power
With all we now know about the gut biome, eating foods with probiotics is the best way to help keep your immunity strong. Kombucha, kefir, kimchi, and sauerkraut are just a few probiotic foods to help you out. Make sure you’re always eating plenty of fiber too to help that gut bacteria thrive. If you’d prefer a probiotic supplement instead, there are loads of wonderful ones to choose from to make sure you’re getting your daily probiotic needs.

Eat right
Unfortunately, this time of year is also when all those holiday goodies are lurking about. Balance it out by eating plenty of fruits and vegetables that are rich in antioxidants. Antioxidant-rich foods are immune boosters that will keep your system fighting all season long. Another warming winter food that will make your soups healthier is bone broth which you can sneak into your
family’s diet without them ever knowing.

Think zinc
The more vitamins you have in your foods this season, particularly vitamin C, the more immunity you’ll have. However, zinc is often forgotten for the powerhouse that it is. Zinc can help stop a cold’s cells from replicating and is a powerful tool to have in your wellness arsenal this season and beyond. You can eat more zinc in spinach, nuts, beans, and pumpkin seeds. There are also zinc supplements you can take daily, or when you’re feeling a cold coming on.

Balance activity and sleep
When the germs are swirling around, be sure you’re getting enough exercise as well as getting enough sleep. Compromising on either one can jeopardize your immunity. With the days shorter and quite frigid, getting in bed earlier isn’t a hard thing to do!

Sanitize with lavender oil
Soap and warm water are always best for cleaning your hands, but when you’re nowhere near a sink, try lavender oil. It smells great, keeps away germs naturally, and keeps your hands soft and supple even in the frigid winter weather.

Keep it clean
We know hands should be clean and kept from our eyes, nose, and mouth, but don’t forget about those things you use every day that can be contaminated with ease. Your phone, keyboard, desk, and door handles are prime examples. Want one that isn’t full of chemicals? Add purified water and distilled vinegar to a spray bottle in equal parts, and then add a few drops of tea tree oil. Spray
away!

There are too many fun events you won’t want to miss over these winter months, and there’s no time to spend being sick in bed. Use these natural immunity boosters to live life to the fullest during cold and flu season!