I love eggs. From my head down to my legs. D*mnit, cheesy marketing jingles got me again.
But fo’ real, eggs are one of the most perfect foods. Why is that? Well for starters the yolk contains a plethora of nutrients, including Vitamin B12 and Selenium. They also score high on the Satiety Index, which means they fill us up and also have been shown to contribute to weight loss (1).
They also have lots of PROTEIN. And all 9 essential amino acids, making them a complete protein.
But what about cholesterol? What if I were to tell you that eggs have actually been shown to improve your cholesterol profile? (2) There are two types of cholesterol– the kind you eat and the kind your body makes. If you’re not consuming enough, your liver will begin to produce more of it. A cardiologist at the Cleveland Clinic, Dr. Steven Nissen, estimates that only 20 percent of your blood cholesterol levels come from your diet.
It’s not so much the cholesterol you are consuming, but the quality of the food and it’s ability to move through the body. It’s when we are inflamed that the cholesterol tends to stick and cumulate, and then we’ve got problems. As the Notorious B.I.G. would say, mo’ inflammation mo’ problems. Well he wouldn’t really say that, but I would.
So let’s make some egg muffins! This is a great way to start your day with an energizing and filling breakfast, with lots of healthy fats and proteins. The more satiated you feel after your meal the less likely you are to snack on not-so-good things. Make these on the weekend, toss them in a tupperware, and BOOM you have a fast and easy breakfast for each day that week.
- 8 eggs
- 1 red pepper, finely chopped
- 1 organic chicken sausage, cut in small pieces (I cut mine in slices and then cut the slices in halves or quarters)
- 1 zucchini, finely chopped
- 1/4 red onion, finely chopped
- Spices of choice to taste: sea salt, pepper, cayenne
- Coconut oil
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
- “Grease” muffin tin pockets lightly with coconut oil
- Mix all other ingredients together in a bowl
- Use a ladle to fill muffin tin pockets ~3/4 full
- Pop in the oven for 20-25 minutes or until egg muffins solidify (they’ll begin to pull away from the sides. Avoid browning since burnt eggs are hella gross.
“Omega” seems to be a buzz word these days. Products tout, Packed with omega 3, 6, and 9s. But what does this mean for you?
In a word, inflammation. Inflammation is the chronic root of all disease, including heart disease.
Inflammation can actually be a helpful defense for the body– it acts as your body’s natural defense to bad bacteria and toxins, protecting your body and helping it heal in short instances. The problem occurs when it is chronic, i.e. when we are continually exposed to aggravation/harmful substances, including SUGAR and processed foods.
So back to these omegas. Omega 6’s, while essential for cellular function, need to be in a balance with omega 3’s. When they are out of balance, inflammation is what results.
Consumption of too many omega 6s, found in vegetable oils and processed foods, creates an imbalance in the body, contributing to inflammation.
Dr. Dwight Lundell, past Chief of Surgery at Banner Heart Hospital, sites a 3:1 ratio to be healthy and balanced. The ratio for a typical American tends to run anywhere from 15:1 to 30:1. That’s a whole lot o’ omega 6’s, and a whole lot o’ resulting inflammation.
So where can these harmful omega 6’s be found? Look to your vegetable oils: soybean, canola, and sunflower oil. These oils are often used because they are cheap and can prolong shelf life, but they are a nightmare for your body.
The main takeaways:
- Focus on getting more omega 3s in your diet: fish (mackerel, cod, anchovies, salmon, herring…), chia seeds, hemp hearts, egg yolks, walnuts
- Vegetable oil is a buzzword and misleading: Steer clear of damaging vegetable oils like soybean, canola, corn, and “partially-hydrogenated” anything. Focus on healthy oils like cold-pressed coconut and olive oil.
- An imbalance of omega 6s to omega 3s contributes to inflammation: The American diet tends to be high in omega 6s, found in vegetable oils and processed foods
This month I’ve been leading a workshop tour on, 5 Key Ways to Fuel Your Body & Business in the New Year.
When we hear “new years” we can’t help but think resolutions. UGH, resolutions. Oftentimes we commit to a goal at the beginning of the year, we follow through for a day or two, or maybe a few weeks, and then what happens? Life gets busy and we fall off track, only to recommit to that same goal the following year, bracing ourselves for the inevitable cycle that ensues.
The very nature of the word re- solution emphasizes this idea of seeking out a solution over and over again, usually in the same manner, and expecting different results- curiously the definition of insanity.
If we want to make a CHANGE, then we need to CHANGE the manner in which we are attempting to achieve something. If calorie counting and dieting sounds like punishment and leaves you out to dry every year, then you need a new approach.
Here are 5 key ways to fuel your body & business in the new year that I emphasize with my clients:
- State your goals in a positive: We have a tendency to say what we DON’T want when framing goals- i.e. “I want to give up sugar!… I’m going to stop drinking!… I’m going to stop being so lazy.” The problem with this is by stating these negative statements over again we are in effect, focusing on them. Your brain doesn’t hear “give up sugar”– it just hears sugar sugar sugar sugar sugar over and over again. Think, if I gave up sugar, what will that do for me? How does that positively impact my life? What do you want? To feel more energized? To feel balanced? and why is that important to you?
- Set concrete daily intentions: A goal and an intention are different. How? A goal is a destination. Oftentimes along that journey we find that what we actually want is something completely different- then feel like a failure for not achieving something that we didn’t want in the first place. An intention is a concrete behavior you can do each day or week. For instance, drinking 32oz of water before noon each day, or meditating for 5 minutes before starting work.
- Slow Down: Did you know that the pace through which you go through life has an impact on your digestion? When we eat to quickly or eat with our stress response activated, it destroys your metabolic power, messes with your digestion, and this can translate to decreased assimilation of vitamins and minerals. Try meditating for 5 minutes before meals or in any situations you find stressful.
- Crowd in foods that you love: Many diets emphasize what NOT to eat, but this can feel like punishment and set us up for rebellion. Instead why not focus on the foods you DO love to eat? If you love to eat blueberries, eat more blueberries! If there’s a veg you don’t like- don’t force yourself to eat it! Find one you DO love and focus on that. You’ll naturally crowd out the not-so-healthy foods that are weighing you down.
- Work with an Expert: Tips are great but how many times do you learn something new, commit to a plan, and then find yourself falling off track a few weeks (or days) later. How would it feel to have someone checking in with you each week to high five you for all the things you did well, work through your challenges, and get actionable steps to take each week? That’s what I provide for my own clients: support, accountability, and the right steps in the right order.
Now is a great time to get back on track. If you’re interested in working together to make sustainable changes, fill out my intake form and I’ll be in touch to coordinate a time for a consult. We can go over your specific goals, challenges, and what working together would look like. You’ll leave feeling inspired and ready to take on the new year.
Happy New Year, indeed!
Whenever someone tells me they don’t like vegetables, I just think, maybe they do but they haven’t had them prepared properly.
Vegetables by nature tend to be bitter (especially greens!), and our inner cave man senses bitterness as danger. In other words, when our cavemen ancestors were foraging for food they wood be on the lookout for poisonness plants, which tended to be characterized by bitterness.
Although when compared to POISON, arugula and kale don’t quite have them same effect (let’s hope not), we still have this innate aversion to bitterness. This is only enhanced by our overexposure to sweets and salty foods. Our tastebuds regenerate about every 2 weeks, and are very adaptable. So if we are accustomed to eating sweet and salty foods our taste buds are going to adapt to sense all in foods in reference to this.
Oftentimes when working with a new client I lead them through 7 days of clean eating. In addition to the instant energy and weight loss they experience, clients almost always tell me that their food started tasting different– but in a good way! Their fruit started tasting better and sweeter. Even their greens tasted sweeter! I remember I had a client who was so excited to eat a small piece of dark chocolate at the end of her 7 days of clean eating. She could believe how overly sweet it tasted! This is because our taste buds change over time.
I saw this because, eating well takes time and patience, but also- the more you eat greens the better they start to taste! Thanks, taste buds, for doing back flips for us.
But let’s get back to this bitterness factor. When I was being certified as a Junior Sommelier (believe it or not, that’s a thing), we did a lesson on pairings and this idea that certain flavors brought out other flavors and other flavor cut them. Sugar brings out sugar. For instance, if you take a dab of sugar on your tongue and then sip a sweet Riesling wine, it will taste like sugar water!
Lemon and salt CUT. They also happened to CUT the bitterness from GREENS.
Remember this when you’re preparing your vegetables! If they don’t taste stellar, try adding a squeeze of lemon juice and sea salt– it works wonders. I apply this principle below with this DELICIOUS recipe.
Roasted Veggies and Tahini Lemon Sauce
- 1 head of cauliflower
- 5 carrots
- 5 parsnips
- bunch of curly parsley, chopped
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup tahini (I use Brad’s organic– try to find one that is creamy)
- 1 lemon
- Sea Salt
- Preheat your oven to 375deg F
- Chop up cauliflower, carrots, and parsnips and toss into a bowl.
- Add olive oil, about a teaspoon of sea salt, and a teaspoon of pepper, and stir ingredients around so the veggies get coated.
- Spread our veggies onto a large baking sheet lined in tin foil, and toss in oven.
- Check on your veggies after 30 minutes to make sure they are not burning. I like to move them around with a wooden spoon once or twice to even out the heat exposure.
- Cook for 45 minutes to an hour, or until they are tender and golden brown, and then pull out of the oven.
- While these cook you can take your large bowl and toss in the juice of 1 lemon and 1/4 cup tahini. Whisk this a little with our fork.
- Toss the warm to hot veggies in the tahini lemon mixture and stir around. The heat will cause the tahini to melt down and coat the veggies in an awesome way.
- Stir in the parsley, and add more sea salt, pepper, or other spices (like turmeric, cayenne, cumin) to taste, and enjoy!
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