What the Heck Should I Eat!?

person carrying basket of vegetables
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We are the only species on this earth that makes eating so complicated. All other life forms have a specific diet that they follow without ever getting together to talk about. Generally speaking, birds eat nuts and seeds, insects eat plants, and many animals eat plants and/or other animals. So what happened to us?

Our evolution and domestication has made the act of eating a very complex topic. There is controversy about whether or not humans should eat meat, dairy, and grains, how much protein, carbs, and fat we should consume – and wait a minute – do we need supplements?! In a world where information is always at our fingertips, in this area we have way too much of it. It’s no wonder why our nation is so confused and overwhelmed!

When thinking about what a person should consume, I like to go back to the basics. The food that comes from nature (plants and animals included) often times are not the problem. I believe the real problem lies in the decline of home cooked meals and an increase in convenience eating, packaged foods, frozen meals, fast food, and regularly taking out or dining in at restaurants. These types of meals will always contain more sugar, more salt, more processed/GMO ingredients, and more unhealthy fats than anything you would prepare at home.

Before starting a radically new approach to eating, I would like to encourage you to start small by introducing foods that you do not typically consume. Joshua Rosenthal, founder of IIN™, coined the term “crowding out” which focuses on inclusion rather than avoidance. By nature, humans do not like to be restricted. Have you ever noticed that day one of your new diet your body suddenly craves everything on the “do not eat” list? We are all children at heart that crave positive reinforcement over negative. Rather than cutting out bread, meat, dairy, or any other food groups, try to add a healthy one instead. By filling up your plate with more vegetables, fruits, and unprocessed real foods, you are automatically leaving less room for less desirable ones.

Using this approach, I think you may find that instead of always being on a “diet”, you will easily be able to adopt a new healthy way of living. For one, you will feel amazing and nothing beats that! But also, when you don’t restrict anything, you aren’t leaving room for yourself to “fall off the wagon” and find yourself on a binge happy downward spiral.

If you give this method a try I would love to hear your feedback. Leave me a comment here or head to my website and send me a message there.

With Love & Gratitude,

Brittany

 

 

“Reeses” Peanut Butter Protein Bars

Let’s be honest about something. Most store bought protein bars are glorified candy bars disguised as health food. They are loaded with sugar and artificial ingredients, highly processed, and some even contain unhealthy trans fats! Eating most protein bars is the equivalent to reaching for a snickers – and does that sound like a good weight loss or body building strategy? I think we can all agree – absolutely not.

With this knowledge, could there possibly be a way to enjoy a protein bar while not sacrificing taste or sabotaging our health goals? I am here to tell you, YES. The best way to achieve this is to make your own at home. This way, you can select the best ingredients, you will know exactly what you are consuming, they will be fresh, and will not contain any preservatives (anything on a store shelf contains some level of preservative ingredients). But, of course, always enjoy in moderation to reap the most health benefits.

I never want my family to feel deprived, but I also put our health at the top of my priorities. Finding ways to enjoy all food groups with my children will hopefully result in a healthy relationship with food and an understanding of what it means to care for ourselves from the inside out. I want to instill healthy ways of cooking, baking, and daily living in my children while they are young, because these early developmental years are crucial for establishing their habits and preferences as they grow into adulthood.

This recipe was inspired by my family’s love for sweet treats, my desire for convenience, and my constant quest for healthy alternatives. It has minimal ingredients and is super easy to make. I hope you enjoy them as much as we do!

 

To start, make the bottom layer.

Peanut butter Dough

Ingredients:

1 16 oz jar organic peanut butter (or any other nut/seed butter of choice)

¾ cup coconut flour

¼ cup raw stevia or 3 tsp stevia extract (I used powdered extract)

Method:

  1. Blend ingredients in a high speed blender
  2. Spread into a baking dish. (I used an 8×6.)
  3. Put in freezer to set while you make the chocolate.

 

Dark Chocolate 

Ingredients:

1 cup cacao butter

1 cup cacao powder

¼ cup raw stevia or 3 tsp stevia extract

1 tsp vanilla

(Note: this makes a bitter dark chocolate. Add more/less sweetener to your taste preference)

Method:

  1. In a double boiler, melt cacao butter.
  2. Add cacao powder and stevia. Mix well. Add vanilla.
  3. Remove pan from freezer, and gently pour chocolate over peanut butter evenly.
  4. Top with any extras you’d like – coconut, walnuts, fruit, cinnamon, etc.
  5. Place back in freezer until chocolate hardens.
  6. Cut into portion sized pieces and enjoy!

 

(I often enjoy mine broken up into pieces over a morning smoothie bowl. How will you enjoy yours?!)

 

Always remember, you have the power to take control of your health. Think of how your food is serving you. Thank you reading.

With love,

Brittany

Double Chocolate Nutter Butter Muffins

I love chocolate. Especially dark chocolate. It’s the one treat that I crave practically everyday. And with so many health benefits, I am happy to give my body what it wants.

These muffins are filled with nutritious ingredients that’ll leave your belly full and your face smiling. Chocolate, peanut butter, bananas…I’m already drooling.

 

Ingredients you’ll need:

2 ripe bananas

1 cup old fashioned oats

3/4 cup almond flour

1/4 cup peanut butter

1/2 cup brown sugar or coconut sugar .

1/2 cup cacao

2 flax eggs (2 tbsp flax, 5 tbsp water, let sit for 5 min)

3/4 cup almond yogurt (I used @kitehillfoods plain)

1/4 cup avocado oil

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

2 tbsp maca powder

1/2 cup cacao chips

Method:

Preheat oven to 375°.

Blend all ingredients in high-speed blender, except for chocolate chips.

Add chips to blender and stir with a spoon.

Spoon batter into a 12 cup muffin tin (lined or greased).

Bake for 20 minutes.

Eat, enjoy, repeat 🙂

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*I crumbled mine on some banana ice cream for an extra special snack. (ripe bananas in an ice cream/sorbet maker for 20 minutes)

Pecan Pumpkin Pudding

This is so thick & creamy, and packed with so many vitamins, minerals, and nutrients.

Pumpkin is a powerhouse fruit. It is high in vitamins A, C, + E, rich in minerals like copper, calcium, potassium, and phosphorus, and contains lots of fiber and antioxidants.

This recipe is so delicious, but feel free to play around with it and add different ingredients and superfoods that you like. Some that come to mind are maca, chia seeds, and greens! There are so many possibilities, and experimentation is how great recipes are born! Have fun and enjoy!

Method:

Blend all ingredients in a high speed blender

  • 1 frozen banana

• 1/2 cup pumpkin puree

• tsp honey

• 1 scoop vanilla protein powder

• 3 medjool dates

• A dash of pumpkin pie spice

• 1 tbsp pecans

• 1/2 cup almond milk (more or less depending on how thick you want it)

I topped mine with apples. Enjoy!!!

Chocolate Chia Parfait with Almond Butter Sauce

I love starting my day with a nutritious breakfast. It definitely sets me up for success, and gives me the fuel I need to power through all of my daily responsibilities.

Chia seeds are the small black or white seeds that come from the chia plant. They were rediscovered as a “superfood” in recent years, and have become quite popular in the health community.

Chia is the Mayan word for “strength”. In fact, ancient Aztec and Mayan cultures considered chia seeds to be a fundamental part of their diets because it gave them energy and endurance during battle.

They are a great ingredient to incorporate into your meals because they are rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, protein, fiber, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.

Chia seeds can be enjoyed in a variety of ways. I like to put them in my smoothies, yogurt, baked goods, energy balls, and I also turn it into pudding.

When chia seeds are soaked in liquid they turn into a gel and expand 12x their weight. Because if this, they are a great way to keep your body feeling fuller longer!

Now that you know the scoop on chia, I hope you enjoy this creamy, decadent, and delicious pudding recipe.


Chocolate Chia Pudding with Almond Butter Sauce – serves 2

  1. Chia pudding: Soak 1/4 cup chia seeds in 1 cup liquid. (I used almond milk, and put it in a recently emptied almond butter jar so the pudding would pick up all the yummy goodness plastered to the sides)
  2. Chocolate pudding: blend one banana with 1/2 of an avocado, 1 tbsp cacao, and stevia, or another sweetener (optional)
  3. Almond Butter Sauce: blend one banana, one heaping tbsp of almond butter, and 3 medjool dates.
  4. Layer each ingredient in glass (chia, chocolate, then almond sauce) until you reach the top, adding berries in between (optional)
  5. Enjoy!!!