5 Healthy Snacks to Satisfy your Sweet Tooth

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Raise your hand if you love sweet foods!

 

I just raised mine!

 

If you didn’t raise yours, it’s probably best if you just make your way out of this blog post and check out any of my other intriguing posts. Here's a good one! 

 

Because today...we’re talking all about healthy, yummy, sweet snacks!!

 

First of all, let’s talk about your “sweet tooth”, because a lot of people come to me feeling hopeless and out of control with their sugar habits.

 

Does that sound like you, too? Do you feel like once you get started, you can’t stop? Or do you feel like you crave sugar often? Especially at night time, when you’re winding down from your long, stressful (but hopefully not stressful) day??

 

There are a few key reasons for sugar cravings. Sometimes it’s nutritionally related, and often it’s habitually and emotionally related. Whenever you crave something sweet, here’s an exercise you can try:

 

Pause and ask yourself what it is you’re wanting from the sweet food. Are you craving the taste? Are you feeling down and looking for a pick-me-up?? Are you bored, lonely, angry, ashamed? What feeling is often associated with your sweet cravings?

 

I want you to know that it’s completely normal to crave and love sweet foods. They’re some of the most pleasurable flavors we experience!

 

But I totally get it...our sweet cravings aren’t always conducive to our health goals. And sometimes we just want something delicious without causing a breakout, a sugar crash, or any other consequence that your frequent sugar binges are giving you.

 

Here are 5 healthy sweet snacks that are not only packed with nutrients, but they’re also super satisfying. The key is to eat them sitting down, distraction free, and totally in the moment. No guilt necessary! It is never a good idea to bring guilt to the table with you. After all...eating is one of the most pleasurable things we experience as human beings. Don’t be afraid to savor everything you eat...chances are, if you truly enjoy these sweet snacks, you’ll find yourself much more satisfied than you would be from a cheap candy bar that you shove down your throat during a rerun of Friends. 

 

Banana Chocolate Shake

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Ingredients:

  • 1 frozen banana
  • ½ cup milk alternative of your choice (I prefer coconut or pea)
  • 1 heaping tbsp peanut butter (or any nut butter of your choice)
  • 1 tsp raw cocoa

Instructions:

  • Blend all ingredients together. Add more milk if you prefer a thinner consistency, and add some ice if you prefer a thicker consistency.


 

Fried Banana with Cinnamon

Ingredients:

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  • 1 banana, sliced
  • 1 tsp. Cinnamon
  • ½ tbsp. Olive oil

Instructions:

  • Heat the olive oil in a pan, add banana and “fry” until the banana reaches your desired texture. Place into a bowl and add cinnamon. You can also add other fun ingredients like peanut butter, goji berries, nuts, etc! Have fun with it :)


 

Greek yogurt with frozen blueberries, nut butter, and granola

Ingredients:

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  • ½ cup full fat plain greek yogurt
  • 1 tbsp. Peanut butter or any nut butter of your choice
  • Handful of frozen blueberries
  • ¼ cup organic granola (or any type you prefer, I like to look for whole grain versions with less sugar)

 

Instructions:

  • Microwave the nut butter in a bowl for about 20 seconds. Add greek yogurt and stir until fully combined. Top with blueberries and granola. Enjoy your fro yo imitation snack!

 

Peanut butter and fruit

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Ingredients:

Fruit of your choice (apple, strawberries, etc)

  • Nut butter of your choice (as you’ve probably noticed by now, nut butter is one of my go-to snack foods. If you’re allergic to nuts, you can substitute with sunflower butter or tahini)

Instructions:

  • Combine or dip, and enjoy!

 

Dark Chocolate

 

Instructions:

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  • Visit your local grocery store (I like Sprouts or Trader Joes for chocolate--they have the widest variety) Select a chocolate bar that sounds most appealing to you. I prefer chocolate that is at least 90% cacao (any Portlandia fans out there??) since it has the most nutrients, and least amount of sugar. Keep in mind that it is somewhat of an acquired taste! High quality dark chocolate with almonds and sea salt is legitttt!


 

I hope this helped you realize that healthy snacking doesn’t have to be complicated, and I’ve given you some motivation to try some of these snacks, or even come up with some of your own!

 

If you enjoyed this post, I would love it if you’d share it with a friend! Or better yet, make one of these snacks for you and a friend and tell me all about it in the comments below!

Vegan Mac & Cheese with Broccoli Meal Prep Recipe

 
 

When it comes to food, I don't discriminate. 

I don't have to be a vegan to eat vegan food. 

I like to call myself a "foodatarian" who practices "nutrient-based eating". 

That means all foods are fair game! 

For this week's meal prep lunch, I made a super simple and delicious vegan mac & cheese with broccoli. 

Also, if you're hip to the trends of Trader Joe's everything but the bagel seasoning, and african smoke spice, you'll love this recipe! 

If you haven't already, I recommend grabbing yourself some. They're super affordable! 

Alright, onto the recipe. Just keep in mind that I'm not a food blogger, so this could get messy! 

For the broccoli

Ingredients: 

Instructions: 

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  1. Preheat oven to 425º
  2. Chop the broccoli into your favorite size
  3. Toss said broccoli in olive oil
  4. Season! 
  5. Plop it in the oven for as long as you prefer! (I like mine extra crispy, so I cooked it for about 30 minutes) I recommend checking on it every 5-10 minutes, and sampling a piece to see if it's ready

For the mac

Ingredients:

  • Your favorite noodle of choice! (I chose chickpea pasta shells)
  • You can do noodles, zoodles, veggie noodles, whatever your little heart desires

Instructions: 

  1. Look at the box, follow cooking instructions!

For the cheese or "cheeze" (As I believe it's called in the vegan world)

Ingredients: 

  • 2 small potatoes, cubed
  • 1 medium carrot, chopped
  • 1 small onion, quartered
  • 1/2 cup raw cashews
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast (I found this in the bulk section of my local Smith's)
  • 1tsp. Dijon mustard
  • 1-2 cloves fresh garlic, chopped
  • 1 tsp. onion powder
  • Trader Joe's Everything but the Bagel Seasoning, to taste

 

 

 

 

Instructions: 

  1. Bring a pot of water to a boil
  2. Add potatoes, carrot, and onion
  3. Boil for about 10 minutes
  4. Reserve about 1 1/2 cups of water then drain the veggies
  5. Add veggies, reserved water, and remaining ingredients to a high speed blender and blend until creamy

 

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Once all is complete, combine your broccoli, mac, and cheeeeeze, top with some more EBT seasoning, and enjoy! 

Note: If you're using this for meal prep purposes, divide the noodles across 4-5 mason jars. Top with cheeze. Add broccoli. 

I hope you've enjoyed this first recipe I've posted on my blog! 

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Help! I Hate Dieting, but I also Want to Eat Healthy

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If you're on the go, you can listen to the audio reading of this post by clicking below! 

 

Raise your hand if you hate diets! (I just raised my hand) If you’ve never tried one, don’t start now.

 

A diet is essentially the idea of cutting out any food group for an extended period of time (some people try to do it for life, but it doesn’t always turn out well), or trying to control what, when, or how much you eat.

 

When I say control, I don’t mean choose. I’m talking about ignoring what your body wants  or needs for the sake of what some outside source or “expert” says.

 

Now if you’re someone who has to follow a specific diet for health reasons, and you’re being directed by a nutritionist or dietitian, that’s a different story. At that point it is still your choice to decide what you’ll eat based on how you want to feel, and how you choose to care for your body.

 

But for the sake of this article, I’m referring to the type of diets we follow in order to lose weight. Which we’ve often been told looks like less calories, less fat, less carbs, less...less...less.

 

It also often means sacrificing the foods you love for the sake of being skinny. You know, like that one saying of “nothing tastes as good as skinny feels”. Uhhh...I’m calling BS on that one. I’ve been skinny, and it doesn’t feel any different. How is skinny a feeling anyway? You can feel good at any size. Also, I love food. I also love eating healthy.

 

So I’ve chosen to combine my love for food with my desire to eat healthy.

 

Wanna know how? Here’s a hint...it doesn’t include days and weeks of chicken with brown rice and steamed broccoli. I’m about to get even more edgy on you and tell you that I don’t eat foods if I don’t like them. If I don’t like the taste of a food, I will not eat it. Even if it’s considered “healthy”.

 

Now there are some exceptions to this...there are certain foods that I don’t like prepared certain ways, so I like to experiment and see if there’s a way I can make them taste yummy. For example...steamed broccoli? Heck no. Broccoli tossed in olive oil, seasoned with a garlic based seasoning and roasted in the oven until it’s crispy? That’s a yes for me! Also, broccoli in mac & cheese is pretty dang delicious. I love those Amy’s TV dinners, especially the mac & cheese and broccoli one. All that creamy goodness with a bit of crunch and I’m getting my veggies in??? I’ll take it!

 

There’s a difference between eating to be skinny and eating for your health. Eating to be skinny looks like counting calories and macros, and eating flavorless meals because God forbid you add too much fat in, like olive oil and avocados (theeee best!).

 

Eating for health looks like what I like to call “nutrient-based eating”. This means I just search for foods with the highest amount of nutrients. Not only do these foods tend to taste amaaazing (after you get used to eating more natural foods, of course), but they also satisfy me in a way that doesn’t leave me hunting through the cabinets for more, more, more!

 

I love superfoods for this reason. Sneaking in chia seeds and flax seeds, and loading up my smoothies with maca powder and various superfood powders from Organic Burst

 

I’ll bet that healthy eating is difficult for you because you haven’t found a sustainable and satisfying way. And satisfaction is the key here. If you don’t feel satisfied with what you’re eating, then you’re gonna go for something that does satisfy you.

 

So here’s a place where you can start...ditch the idea that you should count calories, or macros, or leave out any food group (keto much??), and start focusing on getting more nutrients into your daily life.

 

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Here’s a recipe you can start with:

 

  1. Go into the grocery store or your local farmers market, and pick out 3-5 veggies that sound appealing to you. I love potatoes, zucchini, bell peppers, onions, and garlic.
  2. Preheat your oven to 425º
  3. Chop the veggies, toss them in olive oil or any oil of your choice (coconut oil is also great!), season them with salt and pepper, or turmeric, or cumin, or any seasoning combo that tickles your fancy--get creative on this!
  4. Roast them until they reach the texture of your liking...any range between soft and crispy!

 

Now take this mixture and sneak it into any meals you’re having this week, have it as a side or a snack, or a meal on its own (I love to add in a boiled egg or some hummus for protein).

 

Voila! You’ve just taken your first step toward ditching the diet mentality and eating food that will nourish your body.

 

Now before I let you go, I want to remind you that this doesn’t have to be 100% of the time. You don’t need to designate weekends or “cheat days”, just pay attention to how you’re feeling and what your body is asking for. Let your body lead the way!

 

If you want to learn more about letting your body lead the way into your health, make sure you’re signed up for my weekly newsletter! You can sign up by snatching any of the freebies available to you throughout my site, and then you’ll be added to my list.

The Lies that we Tell Ourselves (to Keep us Playing Small)

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Have you been lying to yourself, and it's holding you back from experiencing true fulfillment and happiness? 

There are many lies we tell ourselves on a daily basis, but most of the time we don't even realize what we're doing. In this post I'll dig into three common ones, but before we begin...

Take a moment to visualize something you achieved in your life that made you feel really happy, proud, or fulfilled. 

What did it take to achieve that goal, and how did you feel along the way? 

Were there times where you wanted to give up? Did it feel uncomfortable? Did you think you couldn't do it? 

If you did experience discomfort, but you still felt fulfilled and proud, I'm guessing it was all worth it. 

The truth is...

Some of the most fulfilling things we do are also some of the hardest things we do. 

I want you to keep that idea at the forefront of your mind as you read through this post. 

Most of the time, we are telling ourselves lies because of one major factor. 

Can you guess what it is? 

FEAR. 

We're afraid of failing. Afraid of being embarrassed or looking stupid. Afraid of messing up. Afraid of succeeding. There are many reasons we self-sabotage and unconsciously hold ourselves back. 

So as you read through this post I want you to take this and use it as information, not judgment. I'm giving you this insight to help empower you to recognize when you're holding yourself back from growth...and to make your choices from that place, rather than from a place of fear. 

You ready? 

Here are 3 lies we tell ourselves to keep us playing small...

Lie #1: "It's easier said than done" 

If you take this statement at face value, you might say it's actually true. And I agree with you. Action does speak louder than words. BUT many times what we actually mean when we say this is "it can't be done". 

When we say "it's easier said than done" we're often implying that yeah, maybe someone else did it. But you're not them, and that it's not possible for you. 

That's not very empowering, is it? 

Now what if you took a moment to acknowledge that yeah, this is easier said than done. And you're okay with taking on the challenge. 

You can start by asking yourself "well, how can it be done?" And just taking one small step forward. 

Lie #2: I'm not [insert lie here] enough

"I'm not pretty enough"

"I'm not skinny enough"

"I'm not smart enough" 

"I'm not qualified enough"

We often follow this lie up with the statement "when I'm [prettier, skinnier, etc.] then I can do that". 

But you have got to stop living for the "when" because life is happening right now, and if you keep finding reasons to not get started, then you'll be waiting forever! 

Sometimes this statement can actually be valid. For example, if you're not qualified enough for your dream career. As in you don't have the credentials they're looking for you. If that's the case, then what can you do to become qualified? Do that thing, if it's something that's really important to you. 

If you're thinking you have to be prettier or skinnier, eff that! You are enough as you are already, don't be afraid to live in your full expression. 

Lie # 3: "I can't do [insert thing you wanna do (or don't want to do and you're looking for an excuse)] because [insert name] will get mad at me" 

There are two parts to this lie. Sometimes we genuinely don't want to do something, but we're afraid to be honest about it. So we pass off the power into someone else's hands. There is nothing wrong with saying "I'm not ready for this" or "I'm just not feeling this right now" instead of copping out and placing the blame on someone else. Take responsibility for your own life and your choices, my friend! 

The second part is similar to the first, but slightly different. What I mean is that sometimes we actually do want to do something, but we're blaming some outside circumstance for holding us back. 

For example... "I can't tell my boss how I really feel about that, because he might fire me or treat me differently". Is that really the truth? And if that does happen, so what? You can figure out the next step from there. 

Sometimes we also like to play into our victim mentality, because it's easier to bitch and moan about a crappy job or relationship than to do something to change it. 

You may be feeling a little resistant to everything I've covered in this post, and that's okay! I've dished out some tough love for you in hopes that you can do the same for yourself. 

It's not always easy to grow, and change, and seek happiness and fulfillment in our lives. But it doesn't come from staying in our comfort zone. 

If you had an "aha" moment during this post, I'd love to hear it in the comments below. What's a lie you often tell yourself, and how can you be more honest with yourself and take steps forward? 

And if you're a woman looking for accountability and support, join my all girl Facebook group called Habit Builder's Society. We'd love to have you! 

If you prefer this post in video format, enjoy...and thanks for reading/watching! 

How to Feel Empowered About your Choices

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Do you often find yourself saying things like "I can't have that", "I can't afford that", or "I can't do that"?? 

Have you ever thought about how the language and words you use can have a major impact on the outcome of things? 

When we shift our language toward a more empowered state of mind, we take charge of our lives! We can't always control the outcomes of situations, but we can choose our mindset. 

One major phrase I hear often is "I can't", so in this week's post I share the major shift I experienced when I decided to re-phrase this common statement...

Watch the video below to learn why I avoid the phrase "I can't", and which phrase I prefer to use instead. 

Now I'd love to hear your thoughts...

What's one area of your life that would benefit from this mindset shift, and how would changing the language around your choices impact you? 

Let's discuss in the comments! 

P.S. If you're a woman looking to feel more empowered and inspired by like-minded women, join my all girl FB group. Click here to join us! Can't wait to see you over there!