How To Find Your Path & Stick With It

Tree blocking the roadHave you stepped on the scale this week?

Post holidays, it’s not uncommon to be 5-10 pounds heavier than you were two weeks ago.

And frustrated (yet again) that another year has passed where you ate all this junky food and are feeling like crap from all the over-indulgence – too much pies and cakes and pastries at holiday parties (or too many cookies, in my case).

And now you’re regretting it!

Chances are your digestive system is also out of whack because you’ve been eating things you normally don’t eat. And you’re paying for it now with daily heartburn & indigestion – along with those extra 10 pounds.

It’s also the time of year when (after the wave of regret passes) you’re likely thinking about what to do to start losing that weight. (It’s why Gym memberships EXPLODE during January.)

You’re going to start seeing all these Detox and Cleanse programs – with the emphasis on exercising more and reducing calories.

And yet, you already know doesn’t work!

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Is It Time For You to H.A.L.T.?

Frustrated woman waiting for a phone call in Christmas kitchenDuring the holidays, there’s a lot of emphasis on love and joy, family togetherness and endless festivities.

But what if the holidays find you alone?

What if you’re dealing with a recent break-up, or illness, or worse still – a death in the family?

Perhaps you can relate?

While there’s no question these things are difficult any time of the year, the pain and heartache increases ten-fold during the month of December.

When you’re up against life’s challenges, do you still find time to take proper care of yourself?

I experienced this first-hand in the past two weeks, when my mother spent the weekend before Christmas in the hospital. Even though her caregiver stayed with her, I still made numerous trips back and forth from home.

I didn’t feel like cooking. (There was little time to shop).

The holiday cookies I had planned to bake were put on hold. I found myself eating on the run – grabbing a quick snack from the fridge (or cupboard) to tide me over. It being the holidays, there were plenty of sweets on hand so my choices weren’t always the best (even though they met my gluten-free, dairy-free, sugar-free criteria).

While sugary anything is very easy to come by this time of year, it’s certainly NOT what you or I, or anyone needs during times of stress.

Yet, there it was – comfort food that fit a need.

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How Not to Feel Like Crap by New Year’s

Eat Less Sugar on Paper Note with texture backgroundHow’s your stress level these days?

Are you obsessing over the holidays? Wondering how you’ll survive?

I hear you! It’s a common refrain, for sure.

Another thing I’m hearing from my clients is this:

“I don’t want to feel like crap by January 1!”

Perhaps you’re also wondering how you can rein in your appetite when so many temptations abound? Let’s face it – the holidays can be extremely stressful, with so much to do and so little time.

Plus stress is a huge compounding issue for any health concern you might have – especially your digestive health!

So today I’m sharing 3 of my favorite tips for managing your stress during the holiday season, so you don’t feel like crap come New Year’s!

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A Cooling Summer Soup

Broccili SoupI’ve been eating a lot of blended foods over the past few months – things like smoothies, soups and purees.

At the same time, I’ve cut waaay back on raw foods and salads, unless they are blended into said smoothies or soups.


This little foray into an alternate way of eating has been in the interest of my own health issues, and also on the advice of my nutritionist.

Yes, I do work with a nutritionist.

The way I see it, it isn’t any different from working with a coach. In both cases, their job is to help keep you on track, and offer plenty of support along the way.

Just knowing you have someone on your side can make a huge difference to your success!

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Happy Mother’s Day!

Mother's Day SmallMy most pressing concern with the upcoming Mother’s Day weekend is the huge focus on Mother’s Day Brunch.

The challenge, whether you are dining at a restaurant or someone’s home, is always – what to eat?

When you rule out Gluten, Dairy and Eggs there isn’t a whole lot left. (It’s fairly common, by the way, for someone who has Celiac Disease to be intolerant to Dairy as well).

So, I posed the question to the group and got lots of feedback, everything from a fruit tray with a creamy dip to chicken kebabs.

The key take-away?

If you’ve been invited to a Mother’s Day Brunch this year – be sure to bring food that YOU can eat.

This is one of those times you need to think of yourself first.

Actually, this rule applies whenever you are invited to a meal at someone’s home, or anytime you’re not sure what the offerings might be.

Because – not only are you special but you deserve the extra attention!

In honor of Mother’s Day, I decided to share with you a recipe for Bobotie. (Pronounced bow-bootie).

This is a delicious, meat-based casserole that I first encountered years ago when I was a guest at someone else’s home.

In fact, I thought it was so delicious, I asked for the recipe on the spot, something I don’t often do.

This would be a great addition to any buffet, whether a Brunch or potluck. Just be sure to use Gluten-Free bread and you’ll be good to go.

And to all the moms out there, Happy Mother’s Day!

Click here for recipe.

Is This Your New Normal?

PackagesHave you felt some resistance accepting the reality of your food sensitivities?

Perhaps you’ve fought the urge to cheat a little bit – just this once?

After all, you probably want to be just like everyone else, especially in social situations, or when dining out.

You want what they’re having.

Today, I thought I’d share with you a little story.

If you’ve been following my blog lately, or reading my newsletter, then you already know that my eighty-nine year old mother recently went gluten-free.

(And also dairy-free.)

This was the result of a visit to my naturopath.

(And yes, even though I knew in my gut that taking my mother to see a naturopath was a good idea, I started to question my decision soon after – wondering if I was doing the right thing).

Was it fair to put an 89-year-old woman through this, and change her diet after a lifetime of eating a certain way?

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Are You Eating Backwards?

Dining OutManners aside, I’d never given much thought to whether I was eating “correctly” while growing up.

Meals were served to me three times a day, and I ate them dutifully.

This didn’t change much until 7th Grade, when I took my first Home Economics class.

(Back in those days, it was a requirement for all female students).

That’s when I first learned there were RULES to eating food.

Things like – it’s important to vary color throughout a meal, so you should never serve a meal that is “all-white” like chicken, white rice and cauliflower.

(I like to think that those first lessons on color have served me well as an interior designer).

We also learned the importance of including the four food groups at every meal – meat, dairy, grains, plus fruit and vegetables.

(My, how that one has changed!)

This was my introduction to the basics of nutrition, and many years later those early lessons have served me well.

However, the older I get, not only do the basic rules keep shifting, but new ones are introduced all the time.

For example, I now know that it’s perfectly OK to avoid dairy – even though it’s one of the basic food groups.

In fact, if you continue to eat the food you’re actually allergic to, chances are you will be… [Read more…]

Juice or Smoothie – Which Will It Be?

Juice SmallI’ve been making a lot of smoothies lately.

If I’m not in the mood for a smoothie, I’ll chop up a bunch of veggies and juice up a tall glass of green juice

Whipping up a green smoothie, or juicing a tall glass of veggie goodness, seems to be all the rage lately.

And yes, I’ve been caught up in the excitement!

Do you have a preference?

For myself, I often prefer a smoothie to juicing – I like that the fiber stays intact (am I the only one who hates throwing all that nutritious fiber down the drain?) – plus I find it easier to clean a VitaMix than a juicer.

Sometimes it’s a Green Smoothie, other times it’s a little less green, depending on the ingredients – it’s a little like mixing a palette of paint, to see what color you end up with.

On the flip side of things, there are many detractors to the juicing craze.

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Can It Be Valentine’s Day Without Chocolate?

Valentine2I can’t help but think that Valentine’s Day is synonymous with chocolate.

Wouldn’t you agree?

Of course, there ARE others ways to show people you love and appreciate them, without involving chocolate, or treats of any kind.

Just doing something nice for another person, or spending time together are a couple of things that come to mind.

And of course – it’s just as important to love and appreciate yourself!

In fact, if you’ve resolved to be kinder to themselves this year by eating less sugar – period – chances are you’re scrambling to find a scrumptious special occasion treat that is still good for you.

Is that even possible?

Of course!

This year, I’m planning to bake something decadent from my new “Paleo Chocolate Lovers’ Cookbook”, by Kelly Brozna – founder of The Spunky Coconut. (Even though I do not follow the Paleo diet, I love exploring her recipes, especially the ones that are free of gluten, dairy and eggs.)

Just for the record, I was blown away by the Macadamia Nut Brownies – how can anything so delicious still be good for you?

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How To Have A Healthy Halloween

Halloween cupcakesAre you ready for Halloween?

While I’m not inclined to don a costume, or deck the house out with carved pumpkins and Halloween décor, I do like to prepare a festive sweet or two for the occasion.

(A gal needs to indulge once in a while).

Even so, I try to find healthier alternatives whenever possible – relying mostly on homemade goodies so I can explore different sweeteners and switch out ingredients as needed.

Of course, one could just as easily focus on savory treats the fit the Halloween theme.

How about a “Black and Orange” Salad – using Forbidden Rice and sweet potatoes?

Or, a nourishing bowl of soup served inside a hollowed out pumpkin?

While that’s all well and good, you’ll probably still want a little something sweet for dessert.

I know I would.

With that in mind, here are my suggestions for a healthy Halloween – so you can have your cake and eat it too!


Cut Back On Sugar

Sounds like an impossibility, doesn’t it?

And yet, for the unlucky few among us who have tested allergic to sugar (or, are super sensitive), this is an everyday reality – not just during Halloween, but all year long.

As it happens, there are many alternatives to refined sugar – things like honey, agave, coconut sugar, maple syrup, stevia and more.

(Agave, once real popular, has more recently fallen out of favor; you can check out this article to learn more).

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