Information Overload

Access to information is great, but do you ever just feel overwhelmed by it, suffocated even? An online search for nutrition, healthy diet, or meal plan pulls up millions of results each. Think getting more specific will help you out? An inquiry for diabetes nutrition also gives you more than 150 million links.

Recently on social media I have spotted an article entitled “5 Foods to Never Eat” shared a multitude of times. I cringe when I see such things. Why? Because I am afraid that the people sharing it are believing it. Clinging to it as the absolute truth. Articles such as this abound and are circulating across social media platforms rapidly.

The very next day you might see one of those “foods never to eat” on another list, “5 of the Greatest Foods Ever.” The point is, conflicting nutrition information is EVERYWHERE. So, what is one to do?

Check the credentials of the author. Are they experts in the field on which they are writing? A medical doctor may be extremely educated in their area of specialty, but most have received no formal nutrition education. Registered Dietitians are the food and nutrition experts who can translate the science of nutrition into practical solutions for healthy living. Nutrition is in fact a science, not an opinion.

Make sure the information is science-based. Exaggerated health articles are rampant on the Internet. They draw people in with ludicrous, eye-catching titles but leave the reader with inaccurate even downright dangerous information.

Finally, is the information or advice practical? Don’t buy into the never do this, always do that, lose 50 pounds in a week with this one simple habit! Move on from absurd, outrageous claims and find a reputable source for accurate information.

Cook for Your Valentine


Do you have a reservation made for Valentine’s Day dinner? If not, it’s probably too late! According to an Open Table survey, over 50% of people plan to dine out on the 14th. But, I’ve got a better idea, stay home and cook for your Valentine!

My birthday happens to be on February 14th as well. However, my husband and I have not once been out to a restaurant on this date.  Waiting to be seated past a reservation time, elbowing a stranger next to me and having to shout to be heard is not my idea of romantic, or fun. Furthermore, many restaurants will be offering a prix fixe menu at a premium price. In fact, the average couple will spend around $150!

This year, why not stay home and prepare a meal customized to your taste? A nice steak with a couple of sides may be just the ticket. Or really step it up a notch and go for a combo. Whatever your sweetie likes: Surf and turf, steak and chicken. Keep them in mind when preparing your menu and you can't go wrong.

Feed someone you love something great because you love them! And don't forget the sweets!

Do you have special plans for Valentine’s Day? Are you staying in or going out?

How To Get Relief From Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Irritable Bowel Syndrome, or IBS, is a highly prevalent disorder that affects the gastrointestinal tract. Nearly 20% of the U.S. population suffers from its uncomfortable and often debilitating effects. This is compounded by the condition’s chronic and episodic nature. About twice as many women as men have IBS and it is most often found in people younger than 45 years old.

Those with IBS are all too familiar with its symptoms and considerable impact on their work life, social activities, and well-being. People with IBS usually have crampy abdominal pain that is associated with constipation and/or diarrhea or abdominal bloating. In some people, constipation predominates (IBS-C); in others diarrhea is more common (IBS-D). Some people have both (IBS-M for "mixed") or neither (IBS-U for "unspecified"). Over time, constipation and diarrhea can even alternate (IBS-A). 

Changes in diet and supplementation are keys to managing IBS, reducing symptoms, and gaining relief.  If you suffer from IBS you will want to pay close attention to your nutrition in order to determine which foods cause you discomfort. It is a good idea to keep a journal noting which foods cause distress before changing your diet.

Most IBS sufferers will want to eliminate gluten, dairy, eggs, soy, nuts, and highly limit caffeine. In addition to a daily multi-vitamin and omega 3 fish oil, you will need to supplement with L-glutamine (500g/day) to rebuild the walls of the intestinal tract, along with multi-probiotics (5-20 billion units/day and prebiotics (3-5g/day). Probiotics are relatively inexpensive, extremely safe and work quickly to ease IBS symptoms. Be sure to look for a “multi – probiotic formula” this means that there are multiple strands of probiotics to build up healthy gut flora.

Although neither soluble nor insoluble fiber will cure IBS, soluble fiber, which helps form and move bulk through the intestines and slows transit time, may lessen constipation and diarrhea associated with IBS. The best approach is to gradually increase the amount of fiber in your diet over a period of weeks, working towards a minimum of 25 grams per day. Examples of foods that contain soluble fiber are legumes, rice, quinoa, oatmeal, okra, potatoes, carrots, apples, bananas, papayas, and avocados.

IBS is often made worse by large meals, high fat meals, alcohol, chocolate, and caffeinated drinks. Eating smaller, more frequent meals and drinking water throughout the day may make IBS symptoms better.

New Year's Resolution Breakdown

New Year’s resolutions. Millions of them have been made and many of them have already been forgotten. Setting a big goal for an entire year sets many people up for failure and is often not the best route to success.

Starting off by creating the big goal is great; you need a destination after all. But you also need a road map, which can be accomplished by making mini goals to hit throughout the year.

For one person monthly or even quarterly goals may be their golden ticket. Others may find it necessary to set daily or weekly goals. This may be something as simple as adding an additional glass of water to your daily consumption or going to bed 30 minutes earlier.

Your overall goal for the year may be something much larger in relation to your health, but breaking it down to these smaller, frequent goals will assist in leading to your ultimate success.

Who wants to make a resolution on January 1st and wait an entire year to determine if it was met? Basically after a year you conclude if you passed or failed. This is what we do with traditional New Year’s resolutions! It's clear to see why this is a setup for a much greater likelihood of failure rather than success.

I was recently asked if I was a goal-oriented person. Absolutely, I am! This came about during a conversation where I found myself discussing a recent personal accomplishment as well as the next mini goal I had in mind. I had not sat down with a pen and paper with the intention of making resolutions or goals, it has just become a habit to create these more frequent goals and I quickly realized it is a great key to success.

So, create your ultimate resolution for 2015 if you so desire. However, do not neglect to break this down into actions you can take on a daily basis to lead you to that destination!

Happy New Year!

Simple Holiday Menu


Happy Holidays! I hope you all are enjoying time with your friends and family. It is the first Christmas for our new family of 3 and we are staying home to relish the moments.

With the arrival of baby 3 weeks before the holiday, it has been a whirlwind. I didn’t plan ahead for a Christmas meal, as Cameron’s due date was actually December 22. I didn’t know if we would be home or in the hospital for delivery!

He decided to make his appearance on December 5 and the past few weeks have flown by. It then hit me, I need to at least get some stocking stuffers and prepare some sort of meal for our first Christmas with just the 3 of us.

I’m going to keep it simple since I only need to feed 2. We’re going to have ham, sweet potatoes, corn, and either brussels sprouts or green beans (maybe both). We’ll also have pumpkin pie, my husband’s favorite, and apple pie as well. Finally, we’ll be making some cookies to leave for Santa!

This is the first year that we haven’t traveled to a family members house for the holiday, therefore the first time I’ve had to whip up the entire meal rather than a side dish or two.  It made me a little anxious, as I wanted to have some traditional choices that really made it feel like a special holiday meal.

We had turkey not too long ago, so I opted for ham. What’s your preference, turkey or ham? For larger gatherings you could probably go with both!

Also, let me know, what are your favorite holiday sides and desserts?

I’ll be better prepared next year, but I’m really looking forward to this special day with my little family!

Welcome to Motherhood

Having a baby is the best thing I have ever done, and the hardest. Our little Cameron McCallie was born on Friday, December 5th. We’ve been home for 2 weeks now and OH MY the experiences we have had.
How new Moms can take care of themselves

Nothing can prepare you. Not reading every word of every book on the topic or every mommy blog out there. Not even, getting the down and dirty version from a close mommy friend.

You know you won’t get any sleep and you expect them to eat, sleep and poop around the clock, but there are struggles you just could not have prepared yourself for.  All of a sudden you are smack dab in the middle of the craziest, yet most beautiful challenge of your life.

A couple of things I have concluded from my experience thus far are:

Moms need to take care of themselves.

            Sit down a few minutes when you have the opportunity versus feeling obligated to have the dishes clean and laundry done. Or take a shower! It’s amazing how this can make you feel like a real person again.

Take a moment to enjoy the small victories.

            Pause to observe the miracle that you have created. Sit, stare, observe and take it all in. Don’t allow the stress, sleep deprivation, depression to rob you of these precious moments that you can never get back.

Another aspect of Moms taking care of themselves is to ensure that they are eating. There is not a single plan that is right for everyone, so I am not here to say eat this, this and this. Finding time to eat is often one of the many struggles new Moms face. With that in mind, one thing that can be very helpful is to have your freezer stocked with options that you can take out and prepare quickly or just heat and serve. Here are a couple of great roundups of freezer meal recipes to get you started.

Food Trend: Why are People Putting Butter in Their Coffee?

Why are People Putting Butter in Their Coffee?

Have you heard anything about people adding butter to their morning coffee and that is their breakfast?

What’s the story??? It’s one of the newest food trends and most people know it as Bulletproof Coffee, a term coined by Dave Asprey.

It all began when Dave came in from -10 degree weather in Tibet and was rejuvenated with a cup of yak butter tea. After years of research he formulated his recipe for Bulletproof coffee, which is now touted by musicians, athletes and top executives.

Here’s how it works, you brew 16 oz. of organic coffee, add 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, 1-2 tablespoons MCT (medium-chain triglyceride) oil or coconut oil, and blend to combine.

The nutrition facts:

Calories: 441

Fat: 51 g (80% saturated)

He emphasizes the use of high quality, organic coffee with lower mtotoxins, grassfed butter with highly desirable fat soluble vitamins and MCT oil to promote high energy, fat loss and brain function.

I interviewed an avid Bulletproof Coffee drinker for a little more first hand insight and here is what they had to say.

How did you first hear about Bulletproof Coffee? 
It was mentioned on a podcast that I listen to.

What made you want to try it?

I was looking for a new, quick breakfast option and I was drinking coffee every morning anyway. I had also just been hearing more about the benefits of adding more healthy fats to your diet.

How long have you been on the Bulletproof Coffee bandwagon?
About 6 months

Do you have it every morning?

Every weekday morning

How do you prepare your Bulletproof coffee?
I add 2 cups brewed coffee to a blender and then add 2 Tbsp MCT oil, 2 TBSP ghee, a dash of creatine, and a dash cinnamon and blend for about 10 seconds. I then pour it into a large Tervis and take it to go.
How do you feel after consuming it and for the next several hours?
Honestly, I feel pretty good. I notice it the most if I take like a week off from it (if I’m out of town) and then come back and get back to the routine of having the bulletproof coffee. I feel more alert and a little sharper.
When is the next time you eat something after drinking your Bulletproof coffee in the morning?
For me, 2 hours later I will have a snack. This is because I exercise regularly and need more substance. 
Do you plan to continue drinking Bulletproof coffee for the foreseeable future?
Yes, I will continue to have it even if I find that I have time to make breakfast in the morning because I enjoy the benefits I am experiencing as well as the taste.

What advice would you give someone wanting to give it a shot? Any tips/tricks?
The actual recipe calls for organic grassfed butter. However, I am lactose intolerant so I use ghee. Also, start off with small doses of the butter or ghee and mct oil as it may upset your stomach at first if you start off with larger doses. Finally, if you want to try it and have any expectation of health benefits such as weight loss you will have to reevaluate your entire diet.

I also calculated the nutrition information for the specific blend of ingredients that my interviewee uses:

Calories: 470

Fat: 58 g (46 g saturated)

Source One Nutrition’s bullet points on Bullet Proof Coffee: 

  • As with any food trend, proceed with caution.
  • I am a proponent of healthy fats, so the fat content alone does not scare me. Fats will not make you fat.
  • If you are only having buttered coffee for breakfast, be sure to consume VERY nutrient dense meals and snacks the rest of the day, as the nutrient content of the coffee concoction is very low.
  • Know your lab numbers before and after drastically changing your diet to know how it is affecting YOU.

I personally have never tried this coffee concoction, but I may do so after the birth of my son and will certainly let you know what I think.

Have you tried butter in your coffee?



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