Nov 28, 2012

Have you tried this healthy, delicious, sugar free drink?

Have you tried this? Crystal Light Pure.  It's not your average Crystal Light which is usually made with Aspartame.  These are made with Stevia, which is an all natural herb not a man made and known cancer causer.  


They taste great and are in a box of individual servings so you can just throw one in a water bottle or glass of water and are good to go where ever you are. Imagine being at a restaurant and pulling one of these out of your purse and mixing it into your water.  Now you don't have to drink plain water, gross diet soda or sugary, regular soda or juice.
My favorite flavor is the Tropical blend.  I have never seen the mixed berry at the store before, so I don't know what that tastes like.  My least favorite is the kiwi strawberry.  It's just kinda bland and unexciting to me.  

You can also get the brand, True Lemon, which is cheaper but is only in citrus flavors and harder to find. In my local stores I find them mixed in with the regular Crystal Light and other juice mixers.   Walmart now has several flavors in their Great Value brand but they are not as good in the quality of the flavors in my opinion.  Skinny Girl has a few flavors that are my favorite and these come in squirt bottles instead of powder. We like to use them with our Soda Stream for great homemade diet soda, without the aspartame or splenda.
 
https://skinnygirlsweeteners.com/products/


Either way, they are all a great way to get in enough water in your diet as well as a little sweet treat. Minus the diabetes or cancer...
-Val


Nov 16, 2012

Essential Oil Tools

Via www.miamourboutique.com
Our newest addition to the shop is natural, healthy, unscented lotion base and easy, melt and pour soap base. They are great for adding your own concoctions of essential oils to. You can easily make a special lotion with lavender and lemon for dry skin, or chamomile and lavender to soothe red, irritated skin. You can add tea tree and orange for a great smelling, skin healing body soap, or tea tree and lavender for an acne fighting face soap. It's so natural and gentle it can be used anywhere on the body. If you have very sensitive skin, they can both be used unscented and as is.


 Lotion Base



Soap Base  
Just add a few drops of a pure, therapeutic grade essential oil to 2 ounces of lotion base, and up to 20 drops of Essential oil to 1/2 lb of soap base. You simply melt the soap base in a microwave safe container, stirring every 30 seconds until it is full melted, then pour it into a mold. Even a cupcake pan or paper cup can used as a makeshift mold. to release items from the mold, place it in the freezer for about half an hour or until it is chilled enough to easily release. If you have any wonderful essential oil blend recipes you would like to share or are an essential oil distributor please share in the comments!

Sep 12, 2012

Pinterest is bad for your health

It's not Pinterest's fault that your friends are pinning junk foods constantly.

Yeah, I know its fun and all, but some people constantly pin some horribly unhealthy food and then you are just sitting there, not moving, looking at it, re pinning it and wanting to eat it.  I would suggest removing all of your friends that will not stop posting things like "rolo cake bars" and "homemade twix".  What kinds of friends are these anyway?  There is a reason I pick on Pinterest Compulsive Dessert Pinners.  I have one simple diet secret for you.  If you want to lose weight, decrease cravings, depression, low blood sugar, bloating, PMS, increase energy, decrease inflammation and all of those things diet plans and pills claim they will do, you must do this one thing.  I know, I sound like one of those really bad internet adds.  "Decrease Belly FAT: do this one weird, old tip."  I've never clicked on one of those but I am pretty sure they want you to buy some book or PDF that probably tells you this one thing I am about to tell you.

STOP  EATING  SUGAR  AND  FLOUR.

It's actually two things, but we can call it one because your body turns all flour into sugar anyway and that sugar turns in to fat.      

It's the Carbohydrates people!  You need carbs, but you do not need 200-300 grams of them a day!  Especially those that are simple and refined carbohydrates.  If you eat under 100 grams of Carbs a day you will lose weight.  
Junky, Junky food, all over pinterest.

Now, here is where it gets complicated, because this is real life and real life is never as easy as finding just one miracle cure that works.   

You cannot eat a lb of bacon a day instead of carbs.  You cannot eat miracle carb free, calorie free noodles all the time and expect to be satisfied and healthy.   You must eat healthy foods which are:



Lots of unlimited vegetables
Fruits
Protein sources, (i'm not going to tell you to not eat meat or to eat meat, just eat some good protein)
Seeds and nuts 
Healthy modest amounts of fats, NOT including Trans-fats and other fabricated oils like canola or vegetable.  Eat Coconut, Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Flax, Oils from seeds.   
Low amounts of grains and Starchy foods like white potatoes
No white flours or sugars.   

This is not the Atkins diet, you are not counting carbs.  This is not a DIET AT ALL.  This is a lifestyle change you can make to feel great and lose some extra weight.  You will feel great, and you will lose weight and you may even be able to get off of some medications.  There is one last little trick.  You have to actually do it, and do it longer than 6 hours.

It may be low fat, but it's high in naughty sugar.
Most people will have a hard time eating their usual 2500 + calories a day that got them into their extra large pants in the first place.  So naturally you will lose weight off of the lower caloric intake as well.  You will also increase the amount of micro nutrients you eat like vitamins and minerals.  

So next time you see a friend pin a meal with lots of sugar or flour in it, and they put LOW CALORIE or LOW FAT, think twice.  It's the sugar that is killing us all softly, not the fat and not always the calories.  

Fat and Sugar are an even more dangerous combination.  The sugar amps up your blood sugar, increasing your insulin, which tells your body to start storing all of those extra calories.  It also tells your fat cells not to release any of their stores.  Hence the lack of energy and the accumulation of fat around your body regions.

A lot of people ask me how to lose weight and then say SCREW YOU when I tell them what they will have to give up.  It is possible to keep the weight down and keep your other body systems in check while still enjoying your breads and sweets.  It goes like this.  Eat 1200 Calories a day.  Be starving all of the time.  Enjoy the shakes, anger and depression when your blood sugar bottoms out after a sweet/ starchy meal.  Exercise for hours a day so you can eat more sweets and starches.  Still end up with high cholesterol.  Stop eating fat.  Now you are limited to non fat desserts like fat free pudding, made from chemicals instead of milk.  Cholesterol is still high, go on medication.  Cholesterol medication causes side effects, take a medication for those as well. Repeat.  

You don't need to be some western medical experiment for the rest of your life.  Just eat wholesome balanced foods that are grown from the earth, not a lab.  Your taste buds will change, you will crave sweets and junk less, you will lose weight and you will be satisfied for once.  

Many people try to get off of sugar by replacing it with chemicals.  WRONG.  Eat food, not science experiments.  If you want to sweeten your tea, try an herbal sweetener, like stevia.   If you are craving sweets, try a banana, or a lara bar.  Eat like a human, not a lab rat.               

HIIT training, work out less, burn more fat

This High Intensity Interval Training workout should burn as many calories as a 60 minute cardio session. The initial workout burns less calories, but your body continues burning calories throughout the day, for up to 48 hours at an increased rate, to replenish your cells oxygen levels.  WIN!
As a warning, you need to be somewhat in shape for this type of exercise. You will be sweating and your heart rate will be at its max most of the time, so make sure you are in good health, or consult a doctor if necessary.

The main advantage of this kind of exercise routine is that instead of burning muscle tissue, like is possible for a slow long cardio workout, your body burns fat stores.  This happens after the workout, so even though you are done working out, you are still burning fat.  To further increase the fat burn of this exercise, do it in the morning first thing before breakfast.  Once you eat breakfast your cells will consume the carbohydrates you ate instead of continuing to use the fat stores it was using throughout the night.

If you are not fit enough for this kind of routine, I suggest walking hills or jumping rope alternating legs, or some sort of cardio workout to increase the strength of your cardiovascular system endurance.  Most importantly do lots of weight lifting and calisthenics like lunges and squats. (women, push yourself, you will not bulk up. I lift 15 lbs when doing bicep curls and I look no where near bulky).  Make sure you have good form!
  

Aug 14, 2012

Blueberry Muffin Green Smoothie



This smoothie is full of power food. It includes real fresh and then frozen blue berries which are full of antioxidants and greens full of vitamins and fiber.
What is an antioxidant? Well it is highly scientific of course.  Your cells are made of molecules, which are made of atoms.  Atoms are made of protons and electrons.  In a complex process of using food molecules for food, occasionally we are left with a proton that has broken free of the electron.  It bounces around the cells causing havoc and destroying the cell membranes, this is a free radical.  An antioxidant is an atom from a molecule of food that can attract the free radical which becomes part of the atom, thus stabilizing it.  You can see how important antioxidants are for your body on the molecular scale, which is the building blocks of the body and its functions.

The greens in this smoothie are full of fiber, which helps the digestion.  Fiber also scrubs the walls of the intestines pulling out toxins.
The greens are also a good source of vegetable protein and also contain antioxidants.
To prepare this smoothie you need to start the night before.
Freeze the greens, berries and bananas.  You will need a powerful blender to make this smoothie a pleasant texture. I use the Blend tec.  A Vitamix will work great as well.

I do not recommend using the dairy isle coconut milk.  It is full of processed sugars and is mostly water.  If you like that stuff for drinking and cereal, you can make it yourself a lot cheaper if you use canned coconut milk. I use about 1/4 of a can of coconut milk and mix that with about 4 cups of water and sweeten it with stevia and dash of salt.  You can use it in your cereal or drink it as you would the So Coconut brand.  At my local stores it goes for about $2.40 a can.  I can make a whole gallon for $2.40 as opposed to the $3.50 it costs for the pre-made half gallon.  For this smoothie we will use it straight out of the can.
I do not add ice to my smoothies generally, because we drink them as meals and ice can really water them down.


Ingredients: put in this order into your blender

4 oz Canned or fresh made coconut milk.
1 2/3 cups water (I just fill my blender up to the 2 cup line with the coconut milk in there)
1/4 cup Oats
2 handfuls of frozen blueberries.  (freeze them yourself when they are ripe and on sale and save yourself a lot of $$$)
2 cups frozen greens, not packed to densely.
2-3 large frozen bananas.  NO PEEL, cut up before freezing in to thirds or fourths.
1 tbl of truvia stevia powder (liquid would probably be one dropper full)
1 tbl chia seeds.
Cinnamon, about 1/4 tsp
Run the blender on smoothie setting or slowly turn it up to the highest setting for 1 minute and enjoy!
 

   

Feb 19, 2012

Homemade Lara Bars




If you enjoy eating well, and healthy, you will love these homemade Lara bars. They are lightly sweet, using only dates as the sweetner. They can be customized to your liking and preference and they are so easy and only contain a handfull of ingredients. Here is the list:

Coconut Cream Pie
1/4 Cup Whole Roasted or raw Almonds
1/4 Cup Cashews
1/2 Cup Coconut flakes, UNSWEETENED
1 tsp Extra Virgin Coconut oil
6 Medjool, Pitted Dates

First put your nuts and coconut flakes in a food processor, or my favorite, a Blend Tech Blender. Process till fine but not floury. Then add the dates and coconut oil. Pulse the blender in short pulses, stiring when the mixture sticks to the sides, or just run your food processor for about 2 minutes, until the mixture forms a nice ball of "dough". You can press the mixture between pieces of wax paper to flatten it and form bars, or you can form balls, or you can put it in a silicone cupcake pan like I do and make little "pucks". I like to set mine and store them in the fridge, but it is not necessary. Enjoy!

Brownie Bar
1/4 cup Walnuts
1/2 cup Almonds
3 squares of Baking Cocoa
5 Dates
1 tsp of coconut oil

First process your nuts and baking cocoa untill fine but not floury. Then add the dates and follow the same directions as the coconut creme pie bars.

Chocolate Cookie Dough Bars


1/2 cup Cashews
1/4 cup Almonds
4 Dates
1/4 cup mini or chopped chocolate chips

Process your chocolate chips first, if they are full size. Just very corsely chop them up and place them aside. Then chop the nuts finely and add the dates, when a nice ball is formed add the chocolate chips.
Enjoy!