By: Leanne Ely
Taking care of ourselves is how we manage our health; there’s no other way around it. It may be a simple concept, but it’s overlooked every single day in favor of taking care of everyone and everything else. Just like breakfast. We skip breakfast thinking we don’t need it. We aren’t hungry—we just want our coffee and all will be right in our worlds. Or so we think.
The problem is that nothing will be right in our worlds if we perpetually do this. Not eating breakfast means we haven’t started our engines so to speak and consequently, we’re putting our metabolisms on hold. That means the body clutter we sit on won’t budge. How ‘bout that? Does that work for you?? It definitely doesn’t for me!
Here’s a quick fix: EAT BREAKFAST!
But if you don’t want to eat it, how about DRINKING it?
Here’s a smoothie recipe that I make everyday for everyone in my household. Oh and here’s something I REALLY love about this smoothie (besides the fact that it tastes AWESOME)—it helps make vitamins go down without gagging because it’s nice and thick! That’s a biggie for me, so check this wonderful easy recipe out!
Ladies and Gentlemen…start your BLENDERS!
Leanne’s Updated, Body Clutter Shredding, Easy, Non-Measured Smoothie “Recipe”
Makes 1 yummy smoothie
A handful of frozen (organic if you can) berries, your choice (about 1/3 cup)
1-2 scoops protein powder*
1 cup coconut milk**
1/4 cup coconut water
1 tablespoon freshly ground flax seed or chia seeds (chia doesn’t need grinding)
*You can get a variety of different protein powders; keep the sugar low, no artificial junk and make sure you’re getting at least 20 grams of protein. We happen to have an amazing selection of protein powders in our shop, and I recommend trying them out! In fact, enter the code “Welcome20” at checkout and we will give you 20% off your first order of any of our smoothie mixes. Click here to see the selection
**You can use unsweetened almond milk, but the nutrients in coconut milk are amazing and you’d be missing out!
Put everything in a blender and LET HER RIP!
For the berries option, you could use peaches or another fruit, but I like the low glycemic-ness of the berries, plus the fiber. Smoothies are pretty forgiving–the only necessary component is frozen fruit to make it shake-like.
That’s it. Pretty simple, isn’t it? That’s how easy breakfast can be in the morning. This smoothie takes me all of two minutes to make.
By: Leanne Ely
Chances are, you have a refrigerator in your home. But, if you’re like many people, you don’t put a lot of thought into the what-goes-where process when you get your groceries home from the market.
There is a reason why your fridge has all of those drawers and shelves. Certain areas of your fridge have different temperature and humidity controls, and that’s why different types of food are intended to be stored in specific places.
Who wants to send their produce into the dark recesses of the refrigerator to die? Nobody! So let’s learn more, shall we?
Temperature, ethylene and humidity . . . oh my!
You know how sometimes you’ll find a floppy zucchini at the bottom of your fridge? Or a bunch of carrots that have gone limp after a day or two? That’s because you let them become dehydrated.
To keep your produce fresh longer, you need a certain amount of water vapor in the air or a good level of relative humidity, depending on the type of vegetable or fruit.
A good way to remember which produce requires more humidity is to think of which wilt the fastest. Foods that require the highest levels of relative humidity are your celery, grapes, zucchini, cucumber, beans, leafy greens, asparagus, avocado, pears and berries. Things like citrus, tomatoes, melon and sweet potato can handle medium level humidity, while dried garlic, squash, onions and pumpkins are more suited for lower levels of relative humidity and they don’t really even need to be stored in the refrigerator.
You know that crisper drawer at the bottom of the fridge? That’s where the most humidity is generally found. If there’s a little sliding tab on the front of the drawers for adjusting the humidity levels, use it! That feature closes the vent and keeps dry air from getting to your produce so it can stay nice and hydrated down there. Keep the relative humidity set at 90 or 100%, the setting where most of that produce will be happiest.
Speaking of that crisper drawer, some types of produce don’t play nicely with others and should be stored separately.
As vegetables and fruits are harvested, they will most often continue to ripen. When this happens, the food produces ethylene gas. This gas can negatively affect other fruits and veggies. It can cause green vegetables to yellow, potatoes to sprout, carrots to turn bitter and asparagus to toughen.
Common ethylene producers include apples, pears, plums, peaches and cantaloupes.
Keep veggies in one drawer and fruits in the other and you should be fine.
Storing meat and eggs
Your fridge probably has a meat keeper drawer. That is the coldest part of your fridge, so use it for your meat (which is likely the most perishable item in there anyway). You can keep fish in there, too, as long as you don’t forget about it. Fresh fish really should be eaten the day you bring it home, so you shouldn’t have to worry about keeping it fresh for more than a couple of hours.
Fridges used to come with little egg holders on the door—some still do! But, you should never store your eggs there. Why not? You should never store anything highly perishable or items that are sensitive to temperature changes in the door of the fridge. That’s because each time the door of the fridge is opened, a blast of warm air hits that area. Eggs need to stay deep inside the fridge where they’ll enjoy a nice, even cold temperature. On that note, however, you should always bring eggs up to room temperature before you cook them. This will help prevent your yolks from breaking and it will help them cook more evenly in general.
Use the door of the fridge to store those condiments you may use on a regular or semi regular basis.
And there you have it!
Your fridge is just ONE appliance in your kitchen. How would you like to set up your entire kitchen for culinary success? You can learn the absolute best way to set up your kitchen in the very first class of my brand new C-School. It’s is about cooking fast, cooking well and having your cooking become effortless, easy and (dare I say it?) a joy! You can enroll right now and get our new student discount (but it won’t last long, so get in now.) I can’t wait to show you the easiest ways to set up your kitchen, use your appliances, and cook incredible meals. Click here for C-School!
By: Leanne Ely
If I could be married to a food, avocado might be the lucky guy. So delicious and healthy, this tree fruit (also known as the Alligator Pear) is not only an incredibly high quality source of fat, but it’s also very versatile.
I enjoy avocado on its own with a simple drizzle of balsamic vinegar and a dash of salt and pepper, but it’s also yummy sliced in a salad, spread on a sandwich instead of mayo and, of course, as the leading star in a big bowl of guacamole (my favorite snack!).
When I eat avocado, I know I’m consuming essential fatty acids and providing myself with a clean source of fuel and lots of important minerals. There was a time when we were told we shouldn’t eat avocados . . . that they’re too fatty. Now we know that we need the good fats that are found in foods like avocado. It’s not fat that makes us fat—It’s sugar!
Avocados have been cultivated in the United States since the early 20th century, primarily in California and Florida. However, they’ve been enjoyed by folks in South and Central America for the past 10,000 years or so.
There are many different varieties of avocados out there, but the one we’re most familiar with in the US is the creamy, rich Hass variety. Other types you may see during the fall and winter months are Zutano, Bacon and Fuerto. Mmm, avocado and bacon!
So, what health benefits do we gain from avocado? Let’s take a look.
Vitamins and minerals. Avocado is high in vitamins E, B6, B6, C and K. It’s also a good source of magnesium, potassium, folate and dietary fiber.
Carotenoids and carotenoid absorption. We often think carrots and orange, not green when we think carotenoids, but the gorgeous green avocado can increase the absorption of carotenoids by anywhere from 200-400%. When you slice avocado onto a salad, or drizzle your greens with avocado oil, your body can make better use of two important carotenoid antioxidants: beta-carotene and lycopene. So, think avocado when you think salad and you’ll get that much more good out of what you’re eating. The same goes when you add avocado to salsa! Avocado contains carotenoid antioxidants as well, mostly in the dark green flesh right beneath the skin.
Anti-inflammatory. Avocado fat contains many many (many) nutrients that help keep inflammation in the body under control. If you suffer from arthritis, add this luscious fruit to your diet. STAT!
Cardiovascular health. Avocado can help improve many aspects of heart health, from inflammation to blood flat levels.
Avocado can do lots more in the body, from regulating blood sugar to preventing cancer of the skin, mouth and prostate!
So much good underneath that ugly green skin!
Now, keep in mind that you do want to watch how much avocado you consume. You don’t want to overload on calories. But, I don’t want you to be afraid of the fat that’s inside an Alligator pear.
Avocado shopping, storage and preparation tips
When you’re shopping for the perfectly ripe avocado, try gently squeezing the ends. If you have a little bit of give, that’s a sign that the fruit is ripe. If it’s very soft, it’s probably overripe and full of brown spots. If it’s hard, it’s under ripe and needs time on the counter before slicing into it.
If you need your avocado to ripen quickly, put it in a brown paper bag with a banana. Magic happens in there!
The best way to open an avocado is to slice it lengthwise with a sharp knife, and gently twist the fruit and pull the halves away from one another. Take your knife and nick the pit, twisting it with the knife to remove it. Use a spoon to scrape all of the beautiful green flesh out from beneath the peel and enjoy!
To store your avocado once it’s already been open, squeeze the exposed flesh with a bit of fresh lemon juice and store, wrapped in plastic wrap, in the fridge. Eat it within a day or so.
One of my favorite things about the 30 Day Paleo Challenge is how we help each other. Here’s a post from the private Facebook group that’s part of the challenge… “Our e-mail from Saving Dinner had a recipe for Paleo Beef Danube from the new winter 30 day paleo challenge… it looks yummy… but I have a question: Are green peas legumes? (I thought they were legumes, so I have avoided them for 5 years… so now I am wondering about it.) Thanks.” What a great question, and yes, it was answered by myself and other PCs (paleo challengers). Click here to join the challenge, join the conversation, and join the transformation!
By: Leanne Ely
Salt is a pretty essential ingredient in our kitchens. We use it all the time, but did you know that not all salt is created equal?
The most common salts on the go tend to be table salt, kosher salt, and sea salt.
Table salt is the most processed and most commonly used in homes across America. This type of salt is scraped down until most of its minerals are removed. It even has dextrose in it. You know what that is, right? SUGAR!
Sea salt is pretty straightforward. Harvested from the sea, evaporated naturally in the sun, sea salt is much less processed than table salt. Its large granules make for a nice garnish for soups and salads. They doesn’t dissolve well though, so you might not want to use sea salt as your everyday salt unless you can find it nice and finely ground.
Kosher salt is known for its easy dissolvability; it’s just regular table salt rolled out into a flake, easy to dissolve, less dense than table salt and therefore it’s common to use a lot less. Chefs like using kosher salt because its granules give food a bit of a subtle crunch.
Gray salt is considered to be a high quality salt and most of its minerals are still intact.
My favorite salt for cooking though, is pink Himalayan salt. It’s perfectly pink in color and typically comes in a grinder for a good fresh flavor. I love it! Some of the minerals found in Himalayan salt are calcium, iron, copper, potassium, and magnesium.
And then there are Epsom salts. Don’t use them in your cooking but definitely in your tub. I use 2 cups in a big bathtub and soak for 20 minutes. Ahh….try it yourself!
These are some seriously beneficial minerals you’re adding to your meal just by adding a bit of pretty pink flavor!
PS–Speaking of benefits, you should see what members of our 30 Day Paleo Challenge group have gotten out of the program! Look at what challenger Kristy said:
“25 days in and I’ve officially lost 10 pounds! I’m a believer!
You can see results just like Kristy! Click here to join this amazing support group (and get the delicious menus too 🙂
25 days in and I’ve officially lost 10 pounds! I’m a believer! – See more at: http://30daypaleochallenge.com/#sthash.w9UNaKXX.dpuf
By: Leanne Ely
What if every bite you put in your mouth gave your body something that would make you stronger and healthier?
How many times have you wished it could be easier to lose weight, to get healthier?
Yes it can be a struggle to get on (and stay on) that healthy path.
But what if you simply started by focusing on replacing empty calories with calories that deliver nutrition to your body?
Here are three things for you to think about—some food for thought if you will:
1. Grains may not be your friend.
I know—we’ve all been told to eat our whole grains, right? They’re heart healthy after all.
But what if wheat wasn’t good for you. What if you could actually be damaging your digestive system by eating gluten containing grains? And it’s not just those with celiac disease that need to be concerned. Gluten does damage when it passes through your gut. Gluten can actually create tiny holes in your gut’s lining, allowing toxins and undigested bits of food to enter parts of your body they shouldn’t. This leads to food sensitivities, inflammation, and all sorts of assorted trouble.
You can break up with bread. I promise you won’t die. There are options out there. Try wrapping your sandwich in some nice crisp lettuce leaves and you’re getting a great source of fiber and nutrients.
2. Sugar is also a well-known enemy.
Sugar is very bad news. No surprise there, but the new research has really shed light on how bad it is.
Not only is sugar just about as addictive as heroin, sugar wreaks havoc in the body, putting you at risk for a slew of diseases and different types of cancer. Sugar can actually even disrupt brain function.
And just when you think you’re doing good to say no to obvious sugars, there’s sugar hiding in everything– from granola and fruit juice to marinades and bread.
Nature has provided us with plenty of sweetness in the form of honey and maple syrup, two forms of sugar that actually possess many health benefits (in moderation, people!).
3. Pesticides are the most evil of all.
If you think organic produce is an unnecessary extra expense, think again. The scary truth is, the pesticides and herbicides used on today’s conventionally grown produce are horrifying. And the really scary part is, we don’t know how these cocktails of chemicals are going to behave in our bodies.
Many of those chemicals are messing up your hormones leading to a whole host of health threats, including breast and prostate cancers. And while organic food is not a cure-all for cancer by any means, eating as organically as you can will lower your risk as long as you have a healthy lifestyle, too like exercising, sleeping well, lowering your stress levels, not smoking and eating a lot of veggies.
Plus, studies show that organic produce actually includes more nutrients and antioxidants than their non-organic counterparts.
There you have it: 3 things. Three major changes: Avoid gluten containing grains, avoid sugar, and avoid chemicals. What if you started to eat like your life depended on it?
PS–Speaking of major changes, you should hear what Diana said about our 30 Day Paleo Challenge:
“It has helped me most definitely! When I stay on plan, I have more energy, fewer seasonal allergy and sinus problems, and hardly any joint and muscle aches, and I used to have a LOT. I’ve also experienced better sleep, weight loss, and a real change for the better in my blood work. I think you’ll really like it, and all the support you’ll receive here.”
It can work for you too! Click here to learn more about our BRAND NEW Winter 30 Day Paleo Challenge!
One of the huge benefits for me eating paleo was kicking my sweet tooth (teeth?) to the curb. Sugar is the number one source of inflammation, flab and feeling like garbage! I have to tell you, what a difference…night and day! And I’m not the only one…look what Colleen had to say!
WOW!! Did that make you say, “me too, I want that!!” You can get it right here:
The fact is, eating like this makes giving up sugar so much easier and makes weight loss, REALLY easy!
Wanna join me for a life changing experience with our BRAND NEW Winter 30 Day Paleo Challenge?
Click here to get started
PS–Our wonderful Facebook community (exclusive to 30 Day Paleo Challengers) is here to help you along the way! Join me, I’m there too