Who else love the fresh flavors of raspberry + lemon? You know I do!
This is a dairy free, refined sugar free, gluten free raspberry tart that is really simple to make with minimal ingredients that your whole family will enjoy.
I’ve tried several “vegan cheesecake” type of desserts before, and I have to say…the cashew base is definitely my favorite. I’ve tried full fat coconut cream and coconut milk, but the cashew base is the creamiest.
We live in a society that seems to value appearance more than anything…
In order to be noticed, popular, or “important”, you have to dress a certain way, wear gobs of makeup, and…be a certain size.
Body Image is something I’ve struggled with what feels like forever…and honestly, I still struggle with it! However, I’ve found ways to remind me of what I’m worth…which has nothing to do with size or weight!
Here are my 5 ways to LOVE my body–and I hope this will inspire you to do the same!
I am strong
It’s amazing what your body can do! I first started working out regularly when I was a senior in high school, and intially, it was all for appearance. As I continued my wellness journey, it became more of “let me see what my body can do” versus “let’s see how small my body can get” mindset. I’ve completed 2 half marathons, a sprint triathlon, and can actually do a bunch of body weight exercises that I couldn’t do a year ago all because I focus on my strength. My legs may be “thick”, but they allow me to move. Keeping that in the back of your mind helps you focus on the positive things about your body.
I feel good in my clothes
My all time NUMBER ONE indicator of how confident I feel is how I feel in my clothes. When my clothes fit (or are even a little loose!), my confidence is boosted and lets me know that my lifestyle is working for me. Being confident in your own skin is a great way to LOVE your body.
I am healthy and well nourished
While I am no size 0, I am healthy and well nourished. What do I mean by that? My organs are functioning properly. I eat nourishing foods to build my healthy gut and colon. I get daily movement to help with digestion, mental health, blood sugar balance and cardiac health. My body craves fresh foods encouraging me to eat plenty of fruits and vegetables. Stop focusing on the number on the scale or the size of your pants–take a step back and see if you are truly HEALTHY and WELL NOURISHED.
I’ve got people who depend on me
Take a look at your life and who is in it. Think of all the people who depend on you–significant other, children, parents, siblings, uncles, aunts, grandparents, friends–they love you for you. Instead of choosing to better yourself for shallow reasons, think of doing it for them–choosing healthy practices to better yourself FOR them. Think of all the extra things you’ll be able to offer your loved ones when you choose to live a healthy lifestyle.
I am HAPPY
Happiness comes from within–not from your outward appearance. While YES it is okay to get dolled up with makeup and a nice outfit–that can’t make you happy. You need to be happy with yourself and where you are with your life. If you are struggilng with that, I highly encourage you to take a look at your lifestyle and see what little changes you can make that may improve your mood–a daily walk, more plants, extra water…every BODY is different and thrives off of different things–find what works for you…find what brings YOU happiness.
This is not an exhaustive list–so make sure to let me know how YOU love your body in the comments section down below OR on my instagram feed.
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Have you ever been inspired to make healthier changes but just wasn’t sure where to start? I’ve been there, too.
Throughout my sophomore year in college, I told myself I’d make time for my workouts. You see, I was really determined with my workouts during my freshman year. Then, I injured my knee and took a break to allow it to heal. After that, it was really hard for me to get back in the habit of working out 5-6 days a week.
The commitment was hard…I fell back into my old, teenage habits of “putting it off until tomorrow”. I’d try to work out in between classes and science labs, but then I’d quickly talk myself out of it…a nap sounded better instead.
After gaining a few unwanted pounds, developing a poor relationship with food & self, and having a hard time fitting into my clothes, I decided things needed to change…I needed to change…I needed to get my mind right so I could be happy with myself again.
But how?? How did I manage my time for my health?
I changed my outlook
While at the time my motivation was how my clothes fit, it didn’t take long for me to remember the “exercise high” from endorphin release–and I fell in love with exercising again. I quit looking at exercise and health as a chore and just made smaller decisions along the way that now last me a lifetime. I put a priority on my health, and eventually, my “healthy habits” became a part of my daily life.
I scheduled time
We are all busy! We all work, have families, school functions, socialization…it all adds up! My biggest advice to you (and myself!) is to schedule time in your day for your health. If you want to meal plan, pick one day and dedicate one hour to prepping all of your fruits + veggies for the week. Schedule time for your workouts. If you know your busy in the evenings, try waking up early to get your workout in. Allow yourself to take an hour daily for you to find joyful movement to help you reach your health promoting goals.
I’m a very spiritual person, and I look to God daily for guidance. When I was struggling prioritizing my health, I prayed to Him. I reached out to Him to help motivate me. Exercising was important for my mental health, and I looked to God’s support to guide me. I even started going on walks in the evenings just to talk to Him–I looked forward to those walks because I knew I’d feel enriched after.
I found an accountability partner
Luckily, I have some great friends! Friends that encouraged me to wake up early to go for a morning run. Friends that had the same goals as I did. Friends that motivated me to drink more water. Friends that helped me normalize foods! Friends that supported me. We were able to lean on each other, talk about our struggles and learn from one another. I highly suggest finding someone that can keep you accountable for both gentle nutrition & joyful movement–and it may be two different people!
I gave myself grace
Sometimes life gets in the way, and you can’t complete your workout. Sometimes you really want to eat french fries instead of a side salad at your favorite restaurant. Sometimes your muscles are sore and your body is telling you it needs rest. And you know what?? That is totally and completely OKAY…and normal! That is part of making sustainable lifestyle changes–allowing yourself to take a rest day, allowing yourself to eat foods that may not be the most nourishing–that IS part of a healthy lifestyle! Food flexibility, food freedom, joyful movement, gentle nutrition, rest days–all of that makes up a mindful & intuitive eating lifestyle. It can be hard in the beginning to give yourself that grace, but eventually, your life will be transformed and you will truly enjoy all aspects of a well-rounded life.
My hope for you is that you can apply at least one of these time management strategies to prioritize your health.
**Challenge for the week? Focus on one of these areas to help you prioritize your health.
Has anyone ever told you that you HAVE to eat fresh foods to be healthy???
The truth of the matter is that frozen foods are very convenient for our busy schedules and some nights we need a quick + easy + nutritious meal in a matter of minutes. In my household, we keep our freezer STOCKED.
Don’t be fearful of frozen foods because they don’t uphold to “diet culture” standards. You can still get nourishment from frozen foods.
Here you will find some of my favorite freezer find foods that I keep on hand for fast, nourishing meals.
But frozen isn’t as good as fresh? WRONG. Frozen vegetables are fresh vegetables that have been washed, cut up, blanched, then frozen…meaning they are still in their complete, WHOLE food form making them a great food find to stock your freezer. What I like most about frozen veggies? They don’t spoil as quick as fresh veggies and are economical. Now, I do love my fresh vegetables–but frozen are so convenient! My favorites include broccoli, cauliflower, spinach and the mixed vegetable blend (usually with broccoli, cauliflower and carrots). How to use? Follow directions on package for preparation and add to stir fry’s, pasta dishes, bake, saute or steam for an easy side dish to accompany any meal.
Where all my Trader Joe’s fans at??? These are so yummy and take less than 10 minutes to make. My favorite way is to lightly saute in a frying pan and add basil pesto + Parmesan cheese. Perfect little side dish! Add a lean protein (like baked chicken or grilled fish) for a complete, satisfying meal!
*Check out your local grocery store vegetable freezer section! Different brands are coming out with their own “Cauli Gnocchi” line.
Cauliflower Crust Pizza
By now, y’all know I love me some cauli-crust! Yes, I have a GREAT recipe that I make + freeze from time to time, but nothing quite beats the convenience of an already prepared crust. There are tons of brands to choose from. My favorites have been Caulipowered and Mama Cozzi’s from Aldi. Bonus? You can buy plain crust and add your own toppings OR buy one already assembled for you. Take your pick!
I LOVE to have veggie burgers on hand. Veggie burgers get a bad rap nowadays because a lot of people seem to be against soy–but unless you have an allergy, intolerance or a medical condition that is affected by soy, it is perfectly nutritious and a great protein source! Soybeans are the only true plant based protein that contains all 9 of the essential amino acids making it a great protein source. I’ve tried many brands and can honestly say I like them all equally. Try what sounds best to you!
There are tons of frozen meats to choose from–precooked, uncooked, ground, strips, etc…I usually buy ground turkey fresh and then freeze until a later use. Pre-grilled frozen chicken strips are also a great one to have on hand to heat up and add to salads, wraps, or bowls. You can do the same with raw chicken breasts, steak, or fish. Recently, I’ve been a HUGE fan of the Mahi Mahi burgers from Trader Joe’s.
Much like frozen veggies, frozen fruits have also gotten a bad rap. “They’re not fresh”…nope, but they are produced in a similar fashion to frozen veggies, just make sure you’re buying the “100% whole fruit” versions–no added sugars or additives. Fruits are perfectly sweet on their own. Frozen fruits are great to make smoothies, add to oatmeal, mix into baked goods, or eat on their own!
While I DO indulge in the “real deal” occasionally, Halo Top gives me the frozen, sweet fix I need to power through my cravings. Is regular ice cream bad? NO! The beauty of intuitive eating is that you can choose what you want based on what will satisfy YOU. Some days it may be Halo Top. Other days it may be Ben & Jerry’s. You do you!If you haven’t tried Halo Top, I highly recommend it! It’s still creamy, sweet, and satisfying. My favorite flavors are PB&J, Mocha Chocolate Chip, and Strawberry Cheesecake.
What foods do you keep stocked in your freezer?? Let me know in the comments!
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First off, what is hangry?? By definition, hangry is when someone becomes irritable as a result of hunger. For me, it’s usually a combination of hunger + stressful/annoying situations. I do not automatically become hangry when I am hungry–just when that combination occurs.
Y’all, this is probably my WORST flaw–I have been hangry one to many times, and it not only affects you but also the people around you…so do yourself and your loved ones a favor and follow these tips to AVOID the hangry monster.
A lot of times hunger can be mistaken for thirst, so stay hydrated! Keep a bottle with you most of the day. Plus, staying hydrated can eliminate headaches, enhance brain clarity and keep you energized for the rest of the day.
Eat Consistent + Complete Meals
What do I mean by consistent + complete meals? Meals that contain all three of the macronutrients (carbs + protein + fat). Each of these macros contain vital nutrition needed that can help you feel full + satisfied until your next meal. Consistency is key–try not to skip meals if you frequently get hangry!
Listen to Your Body’s Hunger Cues
If you’re hungry right after a meal, you may just be thirsty…have some water, and wait a few minutes. If you are still hungry, then you likely didn’t feed your body enough during the meal. Add a non-starchy vegetable or piece of fruit to your meals and that should satisfy your hunger. On the flip side, if it is mid afternoon and you are hungry, have a snack! Especially if dinner is several hours away OR you’re hitting the gym soon.
Have Healthy Snacks on Hand
This is KEY for success in beating the hangry monster. Keep power bars in your purse or at your desk. Have fresh fruits + veggies readily available for convenience. Pair snacks with protein so it slows down blood sugar spike and keeps you full for longer periods of time. Don’t fear snacking–be mindful in listening to your hunger cues and feed your body as needed.
In order to have consistent + complete meals with all 3 macros + veggies, planning needs to happen. This does not mean you have to prep all your food on Sunday and eat the same thing over and over again (although that does work for some people)–I tend to get bored of the same thing every day. My advice? Take one day of your week and plan your meals and snacks. Write them down, make a grocery list, and stock your fridge with items needed. Prepare (wash + cut) all of your fruits and veggies for easy access, and allow time to cook easy + nutritious meals during the week. If you like cooking everything on Sunday for the whole week and it works well for you, do it! Find your balance.
If nothing else, remember this! My hangry-self is sparked by negativity–if I know I am going into something particularly stressful or annoying, I make sure I have my nourishing snacks on hand and eat well balanced meals. This is my trigger (it may be different for you), but nothing good comes from negativity for me. Find something positive about your day and focus on it–this may help you stay calm. Do your best to stay calm during these situations, and if you’re fueled well, hopefully the hanger will stay away!
What are some of your tips to avoid becoming hangry? Let me know in the comments! 🙂
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