Tag Archives: health

big apple overview.

There is something about New York City that gives me what feels like endless energy and the greatest ambition + after living there twice, it has truly become my home away from home. Jason and I spent time in the Big Apple this month for some work and some play, and I couldn’t help but share our go-to spots!

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Friend of a Farmer // 77 Irving Place

This is my favorite breakfast spot with the freshest ingredients – their zucchini bread, array of scrambles, and almond milk lattes are to die for. Not to mention, they serve the best blueberry pancakes I have ever tried. It is the coziest atmosphere with two fireplaces in the snowy winter and outdoor seating when the weather is pretty. Must try!

Butcher’s Daughter // 19 Kenmare

For all of you health lovers out there, this is your place. Not to mention, it is the most adorable spot in all the land. We love going there before dinner for a little appetizer or a pick-me-up elixir shot (my fave: the vampire slayer). Other must tries: avocado toast bites, the spicy kale salad, and the deviled eggs.

Cafe Cluny // 284 W 12th St

Jason introduced me to this adorable little cafe a few years ago. It is a romantic gem of a place in the heart of the cozy streets of West Village. The food is impeccable. Not many words are needed for this eatery except GO for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Or all three!

13244628_10108179930989604_3784913934894037721_nMaman // 239 Centre Street

To. Die. For. This may be the most darling coffee shop with the yummiest match almond milk latte and the best almond milk latte (except for the one at the T Room in Dallas, of course). They also have fresh and delicious bakery items + a fantastic brunch on Saturday and Sunday. Yes, please!

Cafe Lalo // 201 West 83rd Street

For all of you You’ve Got Mail lovers, this is a special spot to visit on the Upper West Side. Positives: it is not touristy; it is absolutely delicious; it is the coziest escape from the hustle and bustle as it sits high on the street + they just provide a great cup of joe. All you need is the daily newspaper to start the day off right or your bestie as you break from the city walking.

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The Plaza Food Hall // 1 W 59th Street

Hi, Home Alone fans, this one is for you or just for anyone that loves an adorable underground food hall after a Central Park stroll. They provide everything your heart can imagine: fresh juices, overflowing lattes, bars that serve breakfast, crepes and macaroons. I most especially love this cozy yet bustling nook before I start my day.

Catch // 21 Ninth Avenue

This is a hearty and memorable seafood spot in the Meatpacking District accompanied by the coolest decor and atmosphere. Jason and I always love going here on a date when our energy is up and are desiring an intimate, yet conversational dinner. They have the yummiest drinks, too!

I am going to stop here, but if you want to look up my other listed favorites, here are a few:

Lure: fun date spot

Mercer Kitchen

Bubby’s: best kale chopped salad

The Smile

Lovely Day

The Red Door Spa

Le Labo: make your own perfume + best personal gifts!

The Clay Pot: a darling jewelry shop

P.S. Check out this rad video our friend Jesy made recording our #NYCnights

Be a Brain Warrior.

7-ways-to-boost-brain-power-612x815You guys. I am the last person that has interest in watching an hour video; I hardly have the attention span for a full snapchat {yikes}, but this video on brain health is one of the best things I have ever listened to. I suggest listening to it while you are cooking or getting ready for the day- that always engages my focus.

We hardly think about our brain health because we can’t see it. We are more focused on the wrinkles on our face or losing ten pounds. Brain health, though, is one of the core sources of our health. Keep reading for seven ways you can boost your brain power every day!

Here are 7 Ways To Boost Your Brainpower Every Day

1. Silence: Decreases anxiety & allows your mind to think and process
2. Exercise: Enhance your mood & boost energy, a strong body translates to a strong mind
3. Cook for Yourself: Understand the foods you’re putting in your body, experiment with different ingredients & flavors. P.S. Have you seen the book Bread & Wine? It talks about the importance of the table and the fun art of experimenting with recipes! I can’t put it down.
4. Eat More Greens: Alkaline the body by balancing pH, aids in digestive health & brain functionality
5. Journal: Write down thoughts, feelings & ideas, exercise creativity while boosting emotional health
6. Board Games: Stimulate the right & left sides of the brain, may prevent memory loss as we age
7. Sleep More! Sleep helps the mind organize information overload, essential for a day of focus & productivity

Steps and photo source: becauseimaddicted

hair masques: just do it

Recently I’ve been getting a lot of questions about hair – what I use to curl it, how I curl it, favorite hair products, etc. SO I wanted to start a series today about hair. Today is going to be all about hair masques – why their important and which ones I love. (I’m hoping to do a tutorial soon on how I curl my hair but am still exploring the whole video concept!)

So, hair masque’s. Before you tune me out and say “that’s just extra money I don’t need to spend on my hair”, hear me out. If you have perfectly healthy hair and have never colored it in your life and it grows extremely fast, then you’re right. You might not need to spend the money on the best hair masque. But, if you’re like me or probably 90% of females today, read on my friends.

I have been obsessed with coloring my hair for longer than I’d like to admit. I always say life is too short to have boring hair. The downside to this is the damage color can put on your hair. If you’re like me and color your hair regularly or semi-often, a good hair masque is a must. Even if you don’t color it, but you dry it, flat iron it, or curl it regularly, you should also look into a good hair masque.

The two masques above (Oribe Gold Lust Transformative Masque and Oribe Masque for Beautiful Color) are by far my favorites and have saved and repaired my hair from so much damage! The first one is for anyone – color treated hair or not. Here’s just a few of the highlights: it moisturizes and restores hair without weighing it down, provides intense nourishment and conditioning, rebuilds and fortifies each fiber, strengthens the cuticle and fills in weak spots, adds softness, shine and body. I LOVE how my hair feels after I use this masque! I usually do it about once a week. This is so critical if you’re trying to grow your hair out, or want long healthy strong hair. I’ve been using it for about two months now and can tell a huge difference in the health of my hair.

The second masque (masque for beautiful color) is perfect for people with color-treated hair or if you spend alot of time in the sun. It helps you maintain your beautiful color (you know, the first day when you get your hair done and you love it). The technology in this masque gives you lasting protection from the sun and other elements, it counteracts the dulling and drying effects of regular color treatments, and it keeps hair in the best condition, both in response to and in preparation for ongoing color treatments. If you color your hair regularly, this masque is a must. I alternate between using this one and the gold lust masque. (So I’ll do gold lust one week, masque for beautiful color the next week – sometimes even more often than that!)

I hope ya’ll try these out and have no doubt you will love them as much as I do! Let me know your thoughts or if you have any favorite hair treatments!

 

DNA Life Bars

I love when you find a hidden treasure out of the blue. I discovered DNA Life Bars from a 3-second snapchat (this is when I become thankful for social media!). My favorite pick out of the bunch is the Chocolate with Roasted Quinoa. It is the bar I have been searching for for years: no refined sugar + full of chocolate pure enough for a cleanse while providing a substantial amount of protein. These bars are my go-to breakfast, snack, after work out bite + perfect sweet tooth filler in the evening. I have to limit my daily intake, but I guess it’s okay if I have too many. #soyummy #guyslovethem #healthybuttastesgood #pureingredients #glutenfree #dairyfree

Scroll down to read this entirely inspiring story of owner Brian Layne discussing how this business began, why the bars are top-notch in the health department, and why they differ from current snacks on the market.

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1) What led you to create DNA Life Bars?

In 2010 My wife Elizabeth was diagnosed with MS.  It completely took us by surprise, she had been healthy and active her whole life.  After much research she decided to heal herself holistically with diet, supplements and exercise, and not take prescribed medications.  After 6 months of a very strict routine that has become her life style,  I was blown away by the dramatic difference in the quality of her life.  One thing we could not find was a yummy protein bar she could eat on the go or after a workout.  I decided to make them for her only at first.  She liked them so much, and then friends and family started eating them and were asking for more…this is when I realized we had something special.   With her encouragement, I decided to start a business making the bars for the public.  It has been two years and a wild ride so far.  I have always been into exercise and nutrition, but seeing her stay strong and healthy inspired me to jump in and create a protein bar that was nutritionally AND delicious for people who appreciate the importance of gut health!

2) How does it feel to know that something you started to help your wife is now being enjoyed by so many people? How did people start finding out about the bars?

It is really awesome to have people enjoy something you have created.  Every time someone buys our bars online or sends us a comment I feel truly blessed to be doing this.  We started like a lot of artisan food makers do- at the farmers markets.  After about 6 months, we had a couple of local health food stores approach us and we decided to take the plunge to go retail.   Since then we have moved more into a online direct to consumer company because the cost of making the bars is still  a little high for distribution through retail.

3) How did you decide on the ingredients to use?

I really just looked at my wife  Seeing Elizabeth’s food restrictions helped me start seeing what I could put together that would provide her a good source of energy, protein and be primarily non-inflammatory ingredients.  The problem with most nutrition bars on the market are they are high in sugar.  And even if it is derived from fruit sugar is a major inflammatory ingredient.

4) What are the health benefits of this bar?

A lot of what makes DNA Life Bars so good is what they do not have in them..  No Gluten, no dairy, no soy, no corn, all non GMO ingredients and of course no refined sugars.  The combination of these  ingredients are great because it provides a lot of healthy fats from organic coconut and almonds.  Fats play a critical role in many functions in out bodies and can be used as a fuel for both exercise and food for the brain.  Americans tend to be scared of fats but the reality of it is that healthy fats do not cause the weight gain and chronic health issues.  Refined sugar is really what people should be avoiding.

5) Is this a full time job for you or a side project?

This is definitely a full time endeavor for me.  Between making the bars, marketing and running the business this is all there is time for.  We are hoping to find a trusted co-packer (a company that makes the bars) this year and have them take over production for us.  We will not do that until we find a team that takes creating the DNA Life Bars as seriously as we do.

6) Tell us how we can incorporate these into our lives.

Really everyone is different. What I hear a lot of people doing in the endurance sports world (runners, cyclists, triathletes, etc.) who use our products is they will eat a bar 30 minutes before an event and then half of one in the middle.  Other people enjoy  them after they hit the gym, yoga or Pilates.  The combination of protein and complex carbs from organic sweet potatoes and pumpkin really help refuel the body.  And of course on a day to day bases they are a great snack for anyone who wants to avoid sugar and wants a healthy dose of protein.  Moms like them for kids and my wife likes them as a substitute for dessert.

shakeology: healthy, yummy, easy

Okay, let me start this post off by saying: I am not a health nut. I don’t spend tons of money on supplements and expensive vitamins and things of that nature. I’ve definitely tried some of that stuff out but more often than not, found it to not be worth the money. Until I tried out Shakeology.

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Here’s 3 reasons why I’m loving Shakeology and think it’s a great use of your money:

  1. First and foremost – it’s super healthy. Each shake is packed with superfood ingredients. As much as I try to get in superfoods each day (kale, avocado, things of that nature…), it’s not always easy if you’re in a hurry. Every shakeology shake has protein & fibers, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, probiotics, and so much  more. All of those things your body needs to keep you feeling full, reduce sugar cravings, support your immune system and lots of other good things!
  2. It’s delicious. My favorite flavor is chocolate. I’m a HUGE sweets lover, in case you hadn’t noticed, and the chocolate shake totally satisfies my sweet tooth! Honestly I would drink it for dessert if I could! If I’m having it for a meal, I’ll add half a banana and almond butter to the blender and it is so yummy!
  3. It’s easy. As much as I’d love to have time every morning to make scrambled egg whites and turkey bacon with avocado and a whole wheat english muffin with fresh fruit…that’s just not realistic most days. After I’m done with a workout I usually shower, get ready and am running out the door. Shakeology is so perfect to just put in the blender and you have your breakfast on the go!

If you’re interested in buying shakeology, just go to this website and you’ll find everything you need!

greek-style meatballs

As most of you know, Michael and I just bought our first house back in March and have been working hard to fix it up and make it feel like home. One of our favorite things about owning a house now has been inviting people over for dinner or get togethers. We both love having people into our home, the conversations shared in these walls, and the laughter that fills the rooms.

One thing that still gives me slight anxiety though is the dinner part. I will be the first to admit that I’m not the greatest cook. I so enjoy it, but I’m not awesome at it. Last night we had my brother & sister-in-law over for dinner and I made these Greek-style meatballs I’m sharing with ya’ll today. They are so unique and yummy, and on top of that, super healthy and easy to make! It’s become my go-to when we’re having people over for dinner and I want to get a little fancier than chicken, but not spend a ton of time on the meal. I hope you enjoy them as much as we did!

Greek meatballs

Greek-style meatballs

  1. In large bowl, mix 1 lb ground beef, 3/4 c. crumbled feta cheese (I used reduced fat!), 1/2 small red onion, grated, 1/3 c. Italian-style bread crumbs; 1/4 c. chopped fresh parsley, 1 lg egg, lightly beaten; 2 tsp dried oregano; and 1/4 tsp each of salt and pepper
  2. Form into 12 balls and thread onto skewers
  3. On cookie sheet sprayed with olive oil cooking spray, roast meatballs at 425 degrees, 15 to 20 mins, or until cooked through.
  4. Serve with lemon slices and 1/2 c. prepared tzatziki (I just bought mine premade from Trader Joe’s!)

For the side dishes, I just did roasted red potatoes and a kale salad. But you could really do anything you want with it! Enjoy! xx