Happy Saturday everyone!  Hip-hip-hooray for the weekend!  I wanted to do a quick little post answering some questions that were given to me by Melissa over at http://www.nourishbymelissa.com/!  She nominated me for the Liebster Award, which is basically a way for readers to get to know bloggers on a more personal level. These questions have to do with health, nutrition, my blog and life in general!  If you want to get to know me a bit better, keep reading to check out my answers:
1. What was your first ever post about?
My first post ever was about Superfoods!  I talked about what a 'superfood' was and I introduced the first segment on my blog with the title "Saturday Superfoods!" Here is a link to my first ever post: http://www.hellohealthyeating.com/1/post/2013/08/what-is-a-superfood.html

2. If you could go anywhere in the world right now, where would you go? Why?
I would go to Southern France because... a) I've wanted to go to Europe for at least 5 years now, ever since I fell in love with Paris (and all things "French").  b) because it's so warm and beautiful!  I'd hit up a little town and visit all the local cafes.  I'd buy fresh produce and walk everywhere!  ...now I'm dreaming!

3. What do you do to take a break when you are stressed out?
Hmmm... this can be difficult for me.  I struggle with insomnia which seems to get so much worse with stress.  I find the best way to reduce stress is to prevent it!  If I get too stressed, I lose sleep and sometimes turn to food for comfort and quick energy.  Well, that just makes me more stressed!  Instead of freaking out about it, I try to put things in perspective.  There are so many great Bible verses that help me with this, but two of my favorite verses to help reduce and prevent stress are:

1 Peter 5:7- "Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you."

Philippians 4:6- "Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God."

These verses remind me that I don't have to get anxious and stressed about the trials of life.  I don't have to figure everything out.  Instead, I can rely on Christ's strength to get me through.  That is such a relief!

4. What is your all time favorite food?
Ohhh, this is a tough one!  I have a lot of favorites, but if we're talking strictly taste and not nutritional value here, I'd have to say I LOVE chocolate!  Especially the dark variety (which is actually kind of healthy).  But I do LOVE other more nourishing foods as well!  See sweet potatoes, all sorts of fresh fruits, and nutrition bars!  YUM!

5. What is one habit you have that you wish you didn't?
That's easy!  Snacking!  Lately, I have found myself snacking way more than I should!  I'll come back to my room and just munch.  But I'm really trying to break the habit and focus on eating bigger (but healthy) meals that fill me up and keep me satisfied longer.  It's not easy, but habits can be broken!  In fact, my last post was about forming healthy habits!

6. Where/when is your favourite place/time to blog?
Well, honestly, it is a bit sporadic for me, as in, I don't have one set time or place to blog.  I mentioned that I have insomnia so I'd be lying if I said some of my posts weren't written at 2AM!  But usually I write them after classes in my dorm room.

7. What aspect of your blog are you most proud of?
That's a tough one, but I guess I'd have to say the fact that my blog actually has followers!  When I first started, I was so new to the whole process and I was afraid that I wouldn't know what to say!  But by God's grace, it grew!  I have been able to connect with such an amazing community of supportive bloggers who aim for living a healthy and nourished life.  They all inspire me in the process!
8. Juices or smoothies? Why?
Smoothies!  Hands down!  I enjoyed one this morning (pineapple, spinach, coconut) and I'm actually drinking one right now as I write this (for an afternoon snack).  I love how easy and quick they are to make... just takes like 2 minutes, plus I can make them in my dorm room.  I made a 'juice' over break and it took a good 20 minutes just to get everything all ready and 'juiced'... the machine takes forever to clean out!  Plus, smoothies have fiber so they are so much more filling!!

9. Are you a morning person or a night person? Favourite meal of the day?
Hmmmm... this is a tricky question for me because it can literally change.  During the summers I work at a camp and I find that the more I have to get up in the AM, the more I become a morning person... but at the same time, I do love to sleep in... so I guess I'm just an afternoon person... that's a safe bet!  And I'd have to say that my favorite meal is dinner!  I love going to dinner and just socializing with my friends!

10. Lastly, why did you start blogging?
I started blogging because some of my friends told me that I should have my own Youtube channel (I tend to get super excited about health and nutrition)!  I figured blogging would be a cool way of expressing my passion!  Also, I am planning to become a Registered Dietician and God-willing I'd like to become a motivational speaker for health/nutrition and maybe even write my own book about the subject!  I figure blogging is a good place to get started!  Plus, now that I've been doing it for almost 9 months, I consider my blog my little baby!  I love to watch it grow :)

Okay, here are The Liebster Award Rules:
  1. You must link back to the person who nominated you
  2. You must answer the 10 Liebster questions given to you by the nominee before you.
  3. You must pick 10 bloggers to be nominated for the award (with a small following)
  4. You must create 10 questions for your nominees
  5. You must go to their blogs and notifiy the nominees

My nominees:
My Questions:
  1. What got you interested in blogging?
  2. What are some goals you have for your blog?
  3. How do you stay motivated to eat right and be active?
  4. What are some tips you have to increase motivation?
  5. What is your favorite 'treat' food?
  6. In a typical day, what would you usually eat?
  7. What is your workout routine?
  8. Do you like to cook more or bake more?
  9. How did you form healthy habits that last?
  10. Do you restrict junk food or eat it in moderation?

What about you?  Feel free to answer any of these questions in the comments below!  I'd love to know what you guys are thinking!
"Motivation is what gets you started.  Habit is what keeps you going." -Jim Ryun

We are all creatures of habit.  We somehow get into a routine and then we do the things we need to do without even thinking about them.  We roll out of bed, brush our teeth, curl our hair, do our makeup AND put on a cute outfit... ALL before we REALLY even wake up!  How can we possibly be so productive?!  Well, it's really just HABIT.

It's the same reason you tend to eat the same breakfast, workout the same way, style your hair the same way, and do many of the things you always do.  The thing about a habit is, it can be a really good thing... or a really bad thing.  According to Merriam-Webster Dictionary, a habit is "a usual way of behaving" and "something that a person does often in a regular and repeated way."

I know 'first hand' the benefits of healthy habits... AND the negatives of not-so-healthy habits.  For one, the more I do something in regards to my health, the easier and more 'usual' it gets.  If I choose nutritious foods, eat regularly throughout the day, eating approximately the same amount of food/ calories at regular intervals... the more likely I am to stick to that plan.  

Eventually, it becomes a lifestyle. This is one reason why I don't recommend skipping meals or crash dieting.  It messes up your whole routine and it gets your body gets out of rhythm.  Another benefit of habit-forming activities is exercise.  When I don't exercise regularly, I don't WANT to exercise.  I almost feel like I CAN'T exercise.  But when I get into a routine, such as running 30 minutes on the elliptical everyday (Woot woot "Active April!!") the more I WANT to workout each day.  While good, healthy habits are truly 'habit forming', this principle also reminds us how hard it is to break bad habits.  And when I say hard... I mean HARD!

A few weeks ago I found myself snacking on sugary treats... a LOT more than usual.  And while I don't believe one 'cheat day' is a HUGE deal... 2 weeks of cheat days is another story.  I sometimes struggle with insomnia and at this point, my sleeping was at its worst.  I was exhausted all day long, so I turned to food for quick energy.  Then, once I had filled myself with WAY too much junk, I couldn't sleep because my tummy was busy digesting and I was busy feeling lousy.  Add the stress of college plus the very addictive nature of high calorie-high fat-high sugar foods, and you have a recipe for DISASTER!

Thankfully, by God's grace, I was able to break that awful habit and go back to eating healthy... but believe me, it didn't happen overnight.  Just like healthy habits are hard to break... so are unhealthy ones.

I distinctly remember feeling the need for a 3 Musketeers bar.  I didn't just WANT one, I NEEDED one.  So I hit up the vending machine and I grabbed one (and maybe a Milky Way, too).  And it didn't actually stop there, by the end of the day I had eaten way more than my stomach needed!  And believe it or not, I still felt unsatisfied.  In order to transition back into a healthy lifestyle I needed to start small.  I had to readjust my whole way of thinking and behaving, and now I no longer feel the NEED for a candy bar.  Actually, I'm kinda sick of em!

So this April, as we all seek to be more active and healthy, I want to focus on developing healthy habits that last!   You can expect some posts about healthy habits... but as for right now, I'd love to hear what you guys are thinking!

Do you have any advice on how to develop positive habits that nourish your body?  Any tips on how to break bad habits?

There is just SO much to be thankful for!!  Seriously!  God has richly blessed me and I am so grateful!  Today, for a 'Thankful Thursday' post I wanted to share with you a FEW of my favorite things, rather than just focus on ONE specific thing I'm thankful for.  They may seem like small, insignificant things... but they're blessings, none-the-less and I really do get happy over the littlest things!

1 Thessalonians 5:18 reminds me to: "Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus."

Here's what I've been thankful for as of late:
1. Yummy, healthy "fast" food!  Who doesn't love a tasty meal out with friends?  Well, just because you're trying to eat healthy doesn't mean your  food can't be tasty too!  Just look at this lovely meal I got from Moe's!  Nothing beats a bowl full of vegan-love!  Hello veggies and tofu :)  You don't want to stuff down lots of fat and calories, but you do want to get out and about every now and then.  It's almost time to put away our cozy sweaters and jackets (and we may need to shed a couple pounds) so be sure you take advantage of one of the healthier options on the menu.  Can't wait for Spring weather to officially arrive!
2. These cookies.  Seriously!!  I went 'gluten-free' a year ago this month.  It's been a journey that doesn't involve many baked goods and I guess somewhere along the way I forgot how incredibly delicious soft cookies are.  My mum made these cookies for my brothers fiancé's bridal shower... such a hit!! We threw in some extra chocolate chips which made them even more decadent and desirable!  Nobody (except me and my happy sensitive tummy) even knew they were gluten-free!!
3. Lactose-free Ice Cream.  I have a slight lactose-sensitivity.  I'm not intolerant to it, but I just feel my best when I limit it... Que this ice cream!  Not only is it lactose-free... it's actually, surprisingly, insanely delicious!  I'd go so far as to say that it's better than many regular chocolate ice creams I've tried.  It tastes chocolaty, but light and airy.  I find it very refreshing and satisfying!  YUM!
4. Running on the elliptical.  Okay, it's official.  I'm hooked!  I see why people love exercise!  It really is addictive!  I just pop in my headphones and go, go, go!  Exercise boosts your energy, improves your mood, and promotes better sleep... All good reasons to give it a try!  For someone who NEVER used to workout... I can't get over how much I love it! :)

How about you?  What are you thankful for today?  What are you loving lately?!

Exercise idea? Take your dog for a walk! She'll be happy... and you'll be fit! Win-Win!
Happy April everyone!!  The temperatures may be lagging behind a bit, but I'm so happy to say that it is officially 'springtime' :)  I am really excited for the new month!  In fact, I have a lot planned for the blog!  I'm bringing back some of my old favorites and also starting some new ones. Get ready for 'Saturday Super foods', 'What I Ate Wednesdays', and more specialty posts, as well!

At the beginning of every month I consider it a new chance to start fresh!  I like to set goals and make plans about how I can make the best use of the time.  
Isaiah 43:18 reminds me to, "Forget the former things: do not dwell on the past."  The turn of a new month is essentially a new beginning!

This month I'm starting a little something I'd like to call 'Active April!'  I know this blog is mostly about eating well, but being active goes hand in hand... I mean it's all about striking a healthy balance and nourishing your body, right?  Eating healthy makes you happy, and staying fit does, too!

So in honor of the new month, I'd like to pose a challenge... Let's try to be active for at least 30 minutes everyday.  For the past 2 weeks or so, I've been using the elliptical.  I do it for about 30 minutes each day, and I love it!  There ARE those days when I really don't feel like doing it, but honestly, there's nothing like the feeling you get when you do.

During 'Active April' you don't have to go running (if you hate that sorta thing), but try a new activity!  Maybe you already workout regularly, but try switching things up.  Are you into spinning?  Well, why not try a yoga class!  Already love Pilates?  How about trying aerobics?!  Whip out that workout DVD and dance it up '90's style'.  Ask your dog if he'd like to go for a walk...You KNOW he wants to!  Whatever you want... just do it for 30 minutes everyday!

Feeling sick one day?  Skip your workout for the day and get back into it tomorrow!  You guys know I'm all about listening to your body.  Even if you only get to workout a few times a week, that's okay!   It's PROGRESS, not perfection we're going for!  Good luck!

Well, that's my plan for April!  How about you?  Do you have any health or fitness plans or goals you could share?!  I'm all ears!

Happy Saturday!!  I'm sure everyone's pumped that it's the weekend- I know I am!  

Today I want to bring back one of my favorite segments: Saturday Superfoods!!  I have to say, I love eating all sorts of different super foods, but one of my most favorites is chickpeas!!  I love love LOVE chickpeas and there are so many different ways to enjoy them!  I eat hummus all the time...but I also enjoy fresh chickpea salad filled with other nourishing beans and a bit of oil.  

I've even had them pan fried and served over a salad, or even eaten like little fries!  They are so versatile and so yummy!!  I've even seen dessert recipes that use them that look really good, but I've never actually tried them.

Regardless of how you eat 'em, they are definitely worth eating!  Chickpeas may be small, but they are loaded with plants-based nutrition!!  

Did you know that just a cup of these babies packs almost 15 grams of protein?!  Not bad for a little bean, right?!  They are also super low in fat and cholesterol, unlike other typical animal proteins.  They have a high iron content and they help to stabilize blood sugar levels.  They contain significant amounts of folic acid, zinc, and magnesium.  Also, chickpeas are filled with filling fiber!  This means that they are sure to keep you full and satisfied for a long time after you eat them!  That's a great way to fend off a grumbly tummy!

Honestly sometimes I eat chickpeas with my breakfast... I love 'em that much!  I'll tell ya... they sure are delicious, filling and satisfying!!

How about you?!  Do you like chickpeas?!  How do you enjoy them?!
Hey everyone!  I hope you all had a lovely weekend!  I know I did... WHY do the weekends have to go so fast?!  Well, that's besides the point!  Today I want to 'spread the word' on the significance of sweet potatoes!  I was recently contacted by the writers over at Mercola.com who wanted to write a short article for my blog.  As you guys know, I love to use my blog as a way to connect with other health bloggers and people in the nutrition industry, so I was honored when they offered to do a post!  

You probably also know that I am a HUGE fan of sweet potatoes!  I've been known to smuggle a few off my lunch tray, save them in my backpack, and nibble away on them in the middle of class when I feel myself in need of a quick 'pick me up'.  I know, I know, they're NOT the most attractive vegetable in the garden, but they sure do SATISFY!  Let's explore some of the reasons why we love 'em!  Here goes:
Sweet Potato: What Makes It an Ideal Snack?

If you’re looking for a sweet treat without the guilt, a good choice would be sweet potatoes. While these root vegetables are popular as a holiday snack, it can be very beneficial adding them to your meals throughout the year. Behind sweet potato’s irresistible taste hides an outstanding nutrient profile.

Why the Color of Sweet Potato Matters

Sweet potatoes vary in color and size, and many types possess antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and disease-fighting components.

They are healthier than regular potatoes, in spite of their similarities in calorie, carbohydrate, and fiber content. The salt and calories of regular white potatoes increase when they are fried, thus raising your chances of developing high blood pressure, cardiovascular problems, and having a stroke. With sweet potatoes, on the other hand, these  risks are not increased.

The different colors of sweet potatoes are also proof that they are far healthier than regular potatoes, as vibrant colors indicate the presence of antioxidants. Antioxidants help quench free radicals that induce oxidation and accelerate aging.

Orange sweet potatoes possess beta-carotene, which supports your immune system and protects you against heart disease and cancer. Beta-carotene can convert to vitamin A, which helps your eye and skin health.

Taking vitamin A in large doses can be dangerous. However, producing it through beta-carotene conversion assures that your body regulates its amounts.

Purple sweet potatoes have anthocyanins, which have anti-cancer properties. Research shows that they inhibit the spread of stomach, colon, lung, and breast cancer cells. Cyanidins and peonidins are also found in purple sweet potatoes. They lower the toxic effects of heavy metals, such as mercury, cadmium, and arsenic.

Other Benefits of Sweet Potatoes

In addition to having powerful antioxidant properties, sweet potatoes also:

·       Address inflammation – Sweet potato extract has been found to aid in lowering inflammation in the brain and nerve tissues.

·       Support wound healing and blood loss prevention – These colorful vegetables have phytonutrients that influence fibrinogen, a glycoprotein that aids in blood clotting. Having the right amounts of fibrinogen is essential to wound healing and the prevention of blood loss.

·       Help regulate blood sugar – They can help normalize blood sugar because they raise your blood levels of adiponectin, a hormone produced by fat cells, in order to regulate the metabolism of insulin.

·       Contain other valuable nutrients, such as vitamins B5 and C, dietary fiber, niacin, iron, potassium, and copper.

Although the sweet potato possesses an excellent nutrient profile, it is important to keep your consumption to a minimum due to its sugar content. There are over 400 types of sweet potatoes, with each containing a different amount of sugar from the other. If you’re diabetic, pre-diabetic, or have insulin resistance, it’s best to consult your doctor before consuming.

How to Enjoy Sweet Potatoes

Certain methods of cooking can enhance the nutrients of sweet potatoes. Steaming or baking them will help increase the availability of beta-carotene. Boiling them, on the other hand, may destroy their beneficial compounds.

Peeling sweet potatoes can make them prone to oxidation and dark spots. If you are to peel them, make sure you eat them or place them in water immediately. Sweet potatoes can be added to desserts, casseroles, and entrees, or can be consumed by themselves.

Sweet potatoes contain fat-soluble nutrients like beta-carotene. To make them highly soluble, make sure you eat sweet potatoes along with fat like raw organic butter. About three to five grams of fat is the typical recommendation.

Sweet potatoes are ideal solid foods for infants too! Serve them pureed along with mashed avocados and cooked peas or carrots. You can also cook sweet potatoes or squash at the start of the week to prepare ready-made servings for your child.

About the Author:

Adrienne writes about health foods and is currently researching about sweet potato nutrition. She is also an avid reader of online health resources like the Mercola natural health articles.  
Hey everyone!  I hope you are all having a great week!  Today I just wanted to show you a few of the things that I've been loving lately!  They may be nothing major, but they sure do brighten my day!  Welcome to 'Sweet Nothings!'  The first thing I need to tell you guys about is the recent gold I struck at Whole Foods!  I had a coupon which allowed me to get LUNA bars for only 50 cents each!  Crazy right?!  Well, I took advantage of this bargain and bought 42 bars!  I know, I know... but they last so long (and are just so delicious)... I couldn't resist!  And with a price like that, I didn't have to!
Another thing I've been loving, is balanced meals.  Take a look at this lunch!  Over Spring break, I finally got to cook/ prepare meals!  In this bowl I had turkey chili with light cheese, Greek yogurt (instead of sour cream), lettuce, tomatoes, parsley and chickpea salad!  YUM!
Monday was Saint Patricks Day!  Sadly I didn't celebrate at school, but we celebrated before I left.  My mom made lean corn beef and cabbage, baked potatoes with Greek yogurt and fresh, homemade apple sauce (just apples, water and cinnamon)!  So tasty...
In honor of Spring time (new beginnings!) I gave myself a little hair cut!  There's nothing like a fresh trim to get rid of those split ends.  I'm very protective with my hair!  In fact, I never get it cut by a dresser... I prefer to DIY! 
Also, I got this adorable new mason jar travel mug... which I think is perfect for Spring!  I love filling it with colorful nutritious smoothies, or seltzer water with lemon juice and lots of ice! 

So that's my life lately!  Back at school and ready to finish up the Spring semester!  

How about you guys?  Did you have a nice Saint Patrick's Day?  Are you excited for Spring?!
Hey everyone!!  It's day 5 of the 7 day detox!!  I'm happy to say that I am begining to feel so much better... it's amazing what healthy eating can do!!  I've been enjoying some deliciously healthy foods lately and I want to show you guys some of my fave treats!!  
Nothing beats a fresh strawberry smoothie topped with juicy blueberries!  So yummy, so sweet, so satisfying!!
My balanced breakfasts have been delicious!!  Here I enjoyed some Mediterranean Pop chips, light chicken salad and some chickpea salad, along with a fresh, juicy orange!  YUM!
I've been eating so many delightful salads!!  This one was topped with healthy cole slaw, low fat BBQ chicken and fresh chickpea salad!!  So filling and satisfying!! 
For this lunch, I devoured a spinach salad topped with lemon juice, red pepper, a salmon burger with hummus, and a fresh sweet potato!!  YUM!  I also drank a smoothie with it!!
Although there have been some very nutritious foods on my menu this week, I have to admit... there have been some not so healthy ones as well.  On Tuesday and Wednesday I 'strayed a bit' from the plan and I found myself snacking on sugary sweets.  (Shame shame, I know... Don't rub it in...)

It's so hard when you're at home for break... my mom bakes the best treats!  She seems to store lots of sweet and colorful candies and delights all over the house!  Haha... even though I overdid it a bit, I realize that obsessing about it doesn't burn any calories...  Sure I didn't eat as healthy as I planned... but just because I snacked in the afternoon doesn't mean I can't redeem myself at night!  Remember, I hate the "All or Nothing" mentality!!

After indulging in my sweet treats, my body craved nourishment... I worked on some blogging today and I enjoyed a bowl of Greek yogurt with fresh strawberries, blueberries, and gluten free granola.  This snack was accompanied by a hot mug of Tazo tea!  YUM!
So, that's been my week so far.  It hasn't been the perfect detox... but it's all about progress, not perfection!!  Here's a verse I want to leave you guys with...  It's all about how God will protect us from temptation.  I think it's something I ought to remember next time I'm tempted to overdo it with the snacks!!

No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it (1 Corinthians 10:13).

How about you?!  Have you been having a good week?  Have you been eating healthy?!
Hey everyone!! I hope you're all enjoying the lovely weather this weekend!  Today I wanted to tell you all about a little health plan that I have created!  I am not a Nutritionist or a Dietician (yet!!)... but I have done my 'fair share' of research in regards to nutrition.  I always like to be my own 'guinea pig' when it comes to discovering what works and what doesn't work for eating right and feeling great.  Anyway, I decided to create my own 7 Day Detox Plan!!

What is a detox?  Well, in theory, it's a time to get rid of all the toxins and junk in your system... but I view it as a way to reset your tastebuds and kickstart your healthy lifestyle.  Honestly, I wish I could tell you that I eat healthy 100% of the time... but I'm human and I don't!  So I view this little detox as a gentle way to kick myself back in gear! 

If you know me, you know that I am not about starvation and deprivation... NOPE!  I'm all about moderation!  But sometimes you need to be a little extra disciplined, so here is my answer!!  Unlike most juice fasts which claim a host of benefits, this Detox is realitively relaxed and it still fuels my body with high quality nutrition.  Without further-a-do, here's the plan:

  1. Each day you get to eat breakfast, lunch, an afternoon snack, dinner, and a bed time snack.  (I don't believe you should ever have to go to bed hungry). 
  2. Start your day off right with a nutritious breakfast!  Are you in the mood for protein?  Have a savory egg omelet filled with veggies and sprinkled with a bit of low fat cheese and tomato salsa!  Need something sweet?  How about a bowl of plain greek yogurt sweetened with raw honey and topped with mixed berries and crunchy granola?  Need something filling?  Try a bowl of stovetop oatmeal mixed with natural peanut butter and a chopped banana!  Whatever it may be, make sure your breakfast is balanced, nutritious... and delicious!
  3. For both snacks, you should drink a fresh smoothie!  Think of this as 'spring cleaning' for your body.  Fresh smoothies filled with nutritious fruits and veggies detoxify your system and bring vitality to your step!  Seriously... it's AMAZING what a few good green smoothies can do for your health!  Watch your skin begin to clear up, your energy start to soar, your mood balance, and your eyes glow with good health!
  4. For lunch and dinner you eat a salad everyday.   I'm not talking about a wimpy, measly, little salad with no dressing that leaves you starving twenty minutes later.  Instead, you should eat a big, beautiful, nutritious salad filled with fresh garden veggies, creamy avocado, savory salmon, grilled chicken, smooth hummus, roasted red peppers, crunchy walnuts, sweet craisins, feta cheese, olive oil or balsamic vinaigrette... or a combo of different toppings like the salad pictured below!  Also... feel free to eat a fresh fruit salad for dessert!
So that's my plan!  I'm home for spring break and I want to make the most of my time!  I want to sleep late, catch up with old friends, hang out with my old dog and 'kick start' my healthy eating for spring.  I've been covered up in bulky sweaters, cozy flannels, and warm stretchy (very stretchy) sweat pants.  Unfortunately, these fashion trends don't transition well into the spring/summer fashion trends.  I want to try this little 7 day detox so that I'll be all ready to go back to school feeling my best!

In addition to eating right, I'm planning to do 30 minutes of walking or yoga/ Pilates each day!  These are light, simple exercises that make me feel great!

So feel free to check back in over the next week to see what I've been noshin' on and hear how the week is going!  
What do you guys think?!  Do you plan to try any 'health kicks' to bring on Spring?!  Any tips I should know as I begin my 7 Day Detox?!  I'd love to hear your thoughts!
Hey everyone!! I hope you're all keeping warm and cozy on these very chilly days.  I'm sure you're getting ready (like me) to kiss this long, frosty winter GOODBYE! and to welcome back the easy breezy warmer days of Spring!  I love it when all my favorite fresh fruits and veggies come back in season.  They're plumper, juicier, tastier, and definitely cheaper!  There are so many great nutritious and delicious choices to choose from, but today I wanted to share one of my favorite WAYS to eat.  In the 'nutrition community' it seems that people are always telling us WHAT we should and WHAT we shouldn't eat... but what about learning HOW to eat?

The biggest problem with so many diet plans out there is that they give you a list of rules and required meal plans.  Essentially, when you follow a 'plan', you are listening to someone else tell you WHAT to eat, WHEN to eat, and HOW MUCH to eat.  That's not freedom at all!!  What if I'm not hungry for breakfast at 7am?  What if I just don't feel like a salad for lunch?  What if I really want a slice of pizza for dinner, but it's not on my plan?  Is that so bad?!  No!

In the comments section of my last blog post, someone told me about the book Intuitive Eating, by Evelyn Tribole and Elyse Resch.  Well, let me start by saying that I can't wait to read it!!  I did some research about what 'Intuitive Eating' means and what it actually looks like.

I came across this article http://www.refinery29.com/2013/12/58356/intuitive-eating written by Kelsey Miller from Refinery 29. Basically, I love love LOVE this mindset towards dieting/ eating/ LIVING!

When I first lost weight years ago I decided that I just wanted to eat healthy portions of my favorite foods so that I could feel my best.  I wanted to listen to my body.  That meant completely avoiding the really unhealthy stuff and cutting back on foods that I didn't need.  But it was more than that.  I realized that I could still enjoy my favorite treats!

Honestly, I think that having a healthy body begins with a healthy mindset. The more I learn about nutrition, the more I learn about the negative effects certain foods have on the body.  I learn that I feel and look healthier when I eat healthier.  I learn to eat when I'm hungry and NOT when I'm not.  But that doesn't mean that having a scoop of ice cream for dessert makes me an unhealthy, horrible person.  It doesn't mean that indulging in a little chocolate of the end of the day is going to be a problem at all!

Sure, sweet treats may not be the best thing in the world, but sometimes you just NEED to satisfy that craving in a grown up, civilized, portion-controlled way.  And remember, the more you restrict certain foods and classify them as "off limits"... the more you will crave them.  As soon as I CAN'T have something I really want, well, that's when I really want it... like, REALLY want it!!!

So check out the article and let me know what you guys think about Intuitive Eating!!

Thoughts?  Feelings?  Comments?  Complaints?  Let me know!!