My Story!

11960063_10205189073909705_2251529924240276450_nI’ve always had a passion for health and nutrition. Ever since I was a little girl, I’ve always been fascinated by FOOD. But sadly, I didn’t always approach food in a healthy, balanced way. My hearty appetite for salty snacks and sweet treats began to get the best of me. When I was in high school I was lured into low calorie, unsustainable diets. The media portrayed ‘fad diets’ as glamorous and fashionable and the only way to lose those unwanted pounds. My goal was to be thin and fit. But I was so uninformed that I actually believed the key to getting there was to eat hardly anything. Well, little did I know that eating TOO little leads to eating TOO much… and then TOO little again… Pretty soon I found myself out-of-balance and heavier than ever!

Trapped  in an unhealthy cycle, I eventually decided to ‘just forget about it!’ I was done with dieting! As a follower of Jesus Christ, I knew that my unhealthy relationship with food was not only dishonoring to my body, but also dishonoring to God. I thought and prayed about it and did lots of research. I decided to QUIT dieting and simply learn how to “eat well.” Something amazing happened! I no longer obsessed over food. I finally found BALANCE and I actually began to lose weight in a completely maintainable sustainable way! I ended up losing 35 pounds over the course of a year and a half.

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I learned that lasting weight loss really requires baby steps, realistic goals and lifestyle changes. As someone who has lost almost 40 pounds (and has maintained that weight loss for 4 years) I know what works (and what doesn’t!) when it comes to healthy weight loss.

Cue Hello Healthy Eating! One of my favorite sayings (and the tagline of this blog) is, “…because eating healthy makes you happy!” Learning to eat well is a challenging process, especially if you’ve struggled and dieted before, but the rewards are SO worth it!

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If you know me, you know that while I believe the best diet is a BALANCED one, you also know that I eat gluten-free, dairy-free and soy-free. It’s a fairly restrictive diet, and this is NOT by choice. I love pizza and yogurt and tofu and Quest bars and ice cream and all those tasty treats I can no longer enjoy… they just don’t love me back! 

IMG_0069 - Version 2I’ve been gluten free for almost 3 years now because of a food intolerance that left me feeling sick. Before I went I was chronically fatigued, extremely sensitive to cold, and I just felt ‘off.’ I went to lots of doctors because I developed Amenorrhea (no period for a year and a half), my nutrition levels were low (according to many blood tests), I had low levels of T4 and antibodies attacking my thyroid (a sign that I would eventually develop hypothyroidism). I also had extremely brittle nails with horizontal ridges on them (a sign of nutrition deficiency) and horrible eczema covering both my ears. All these seemingly unrelated symptoms pointed to a Gluten Intolerance. I decided to nix gluten from my diet and I actually began to feel better in just a few days! Four months later my period came back! My nails began to grow in stronger and longer and I watched as my eczema (that I used to treat with harsh topical creams) disappeared! I saw first-hand the power of food. I was in awe!

Since going I’ve had some other bad reactions to dairy and soy. I sometimes end up with an upset tummy the size of a beach ball, horrible digestive issues, and daily stomach aches. For these and various other reasons, I cut out these common allergens as well.

Image 1-30-15 at 11.32 AMSo here I am! Gluten-free, dairy-free, soy-free and still eating balanced! I’ve eaten this way for so long now that my taste buds and sensitive tummy actually prefer the most basic unprocessed foods. The closer I get to nature, the better I feel… just the way God intended for us to eat! Some of my favorite staples?! Naturally sweet sweet potatoes! Plain whole grain oats (which I flavor with fresh apple chunks and robust cinnamon). I also LOVE crunchy carrots (I eat them so often that my hands turn orange!) with creamy hummus (pumpkin hummus is my fave). I enjoy local eggs for a hearty protein punch and lentils for some plants based protein (hello balance)! I get my Omega 3s from savory salmon and I can’t even imagine a day without spinach. I nosh on ripe tomatoes and I adore avocado. I sip green smoothies on hot days, and cinnamon spice tea with almond milk on chilly days.

IMG_3396Who needs processed sugary candy when you can enjoy nature’s candy… fruit! Crisp fall apples, sweet summery strawberries and plump green grapes! I can’t forget cantaloup (my absolute favorite fruit!) And I satisfy my sweet tooth with a bit of organic salted (yes, salted!) dark chocolate or a scoop of coconut milk ice-cream!

Just because I can’t eat certain things doesn’t mean I don’t eat well. I’m all about BALANCE and my food intolerances have actually caused me to eat incredibly healthy, completely natural things. And guess what?! I love it! My taste buds have changed and I honestly feel SO much better than I used to! After all, eating healthy makes you happy, right?! The healthier you eat, the better you feel and the better you feel, the healthier you want to eat. See that healthy cycle? No deprivation here! …but you don’t have to take my word for it, give it a try yourself. Browse my blog and try new some of my favorite superfoods, checkout the best vegan snacks, and my favorite ways to stay motivated. Ditch the diets and say HELLO HEALTHY EATING …because eating healthy makes you happy!

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  • Reply Heather

    You’re a lovely person! We have so much in common and I’m delighted to have found your blog. Looking forward to keeping up with all you do!:)



    December 1, 2015 at 3:45 am
    • Reply Cailee

      Thank you SO much Heather! Same to you love! <3
      xoxo Cailee!

      March 19, 2016 at 3:30 pm
  • Reply Claire

    Ahhh! So happy I stumbled across your blog! I am also dairy, soy, and (try to be) gluten-free and have several other intolerances as well due to severe IBS! You are a wonderfully cheerful person and I will definitely be checking back here. 🙂

    January 15, 2016 at 2:26 am
    • Reply Cailee

      Awww! Thanks Claire! That means a lot 🙂 And I’m so glad we could connect! Also, I’m wishing you the best with your food intolerances! It can be hard to go without those foods sometimes, but don’t you just feel SO much better?!
      xoxo Cailee!

      March 19, 2016 at 3:31 pm
  • Reply Liz

    I feel like you and I have VERY similar stories! Mine happened during college (figures) and I slowly taught myself how to take care of my body the RIGHT way— with natural ingredients, whole foods, and exercise that I love! Now I crave apples and peanut butter instead of candy bars and I’ve never been happier! I’m SO glad I found your blog— can’t wait to read more 🙂

    January 17, 2016 at 9:15 pm
    • Reply Cailee

      Yes yes yes!! Isn’t it amazing how the more natural foods you eat, the more natural foods you crave?? The minute I stopped saying “I can’t” eat the junk food was when I stopped wanting it so bad! Yay for healthiness and happiness! Like I always say, why eat well? “…because eating healthy makes you happy!” So glad we could connect! LOVE your blog btw! <3
      xoxo Cailee!

      March 19, 2016 at 3:33 pm
  • Reply Anna

    Loved Reading this!! You are a beautiful soul <3 Just followed you on Bloglovin 😀 can't wait to read more xx

    March 6, 2016 at 10:21 am
    • Reply Cailee

      Anna!! YOU are so sweet! Thank you so much for your kind words!! <3 I hope you like what you read!!
      xoxo Cailee!

      March 19, 2016 at 3:34 pm
  • Reply Ashlee

    LOVE your story!! We have sort of similar stories,I am currently overcoming an ED and trying to find the right balance of having a healthy relationship with food and being happy with my body. I am excited to read more of your blog to help me find that right balance.

    March 18, 2016 at 12:13 pm
    • Reply Cailee

      I’m so glad you found me!! I’m ALL about that healthy balance! I can’t wait to stay in touch with you love! Wishing you the very best! YOU can do it!
      xoxo Cailee!

      March 19, 2016 at 3:35 pm
  • Reply Geanean @HealthyGLOFitness

    Cailee it’s so awesome to find another Jesus-loving vegan!! (Well, mostly vegan 😉). We are a rare breed! And I love your recipes. Thanks for sharing!

    June 8, 2016 at 1:48 am
    • Reply Cailee

      Thanks so much Geanean!! I love Jesus! And I love plants! Hope you’re having a wonderful day!!
      xoxo Cailee!

      August 1, 2016 at 3:19 pm
  • Reply Amanda Howard

    I’ve just read my first blog post of your’s about the blueberries and I’m officially hooked! Thanks for sharing your story! My quest to to always eat well myself but first and foremost to teach my little girl healthy habits as she grows up!

    July 27, 2016 at 9:02 pm
    • Reply Cailee

      Thanks so much Amanda! That’s so awesome that you are such a great role model for your little girl!! Very inspiring! Hope you have a lovely rest of your day!
      xoxo Cailee!

      August 1, 2016 at 3:20 pm
      • Reply Amanda Howard

        Thanks so much for the reply! Loving your blog! xoxo

        August 20, 2016 at 2:42 am

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