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Finally, here is my first recipe!

(as some of you have been requesting)

While doing some research for a blog post, I realized I was not getting enough protein. So I decided to try the infamous breakfast protein shake.

It took me a while to find a protein powder that was gluten-free, dairy free, (mostly) organic and that also did not taste like cardboard, as some do.

Then it took some testing to find a combination that tasted good.

Now I love it!

It’s very filling and sets me up for the day. When I don’t have it for breakfast I find I am hungry all day. I find starting the day with protein and then having protein at every meal keeps me satiated. If you find that you are often hungry consider upping your protein intake.

I don’t know of any other way to get this much protein at breakfast – well maybe eggs and turkey bacon, but that feels so heavy and is a lot more cumbersome to prepare.

The smoothie is pretty big and filling so I have half and then I bring the other half to have after the first class I teach in the morning.

Ingredients

1 cup organic vanilla almond milk – 30 calories (Costco)

1/2 organic banana – 50 calories (Whole Foods)

1 tbsp organic hemp oil (for shiny hair)  – 120 calories (Whole Foods)

1 tbsp organic chia seeds gives it nice thick consistency – 50 calories/2 g protein (Costco)

1/3 cup organic frozen berries – 20 calories (Costco)

1 scoop Kaizen Vegan Chocolate Protein Powder – 160 calories/25 g protein (Whole Foods)

Total calories: 430

Total protein: 27 g

I put everything in my Bullet blender except the frozen berries and protein powder, I let it sit for about 15 minutes so the Chia seeds soften.

When I’m ready to have it I add the frozen berries and protein powder and blend for a bit longer than you would think (1 full minute) so it has a really smooth whippy dessert-like consistency.

I find it’s hard to digest the protein so I take a digestive enzyme capsule from Whole Foods with it.

Once in a blue moon if I don’t have time for a meal I will have it as a meal for lunch or dinner.

Let me know if you try it!

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Have you ever read the ingredients on a candy bar?

The main ingredient of concern (among many) is hydrogenated vegetable oil.

It’s oil that’s been treated with hydrogen, if you can believe it, to make it stronger. This way when items are shipped they do not break as easily. The problem is, this oil does not break down in our bodies. In fact, we are not able to digest it at all so it sticks to our arteries collecting dust until there’s enough of it there to to block the artery all together. The only way to remove it is surgically, that is if it doesn’t cause a heart attack first!

Hydrogenated oil is also known as “trans fats” and it’s become common to see food items marked “0 trans fats”. Unfortunately this cannot be trusted. Since I always read ingredient labels I was surprised to read “hydrogenated oil” on an ingredient list on a product that was labelled “0 trans fats”. “How strange”, I thought to myself, so I called Health Canada to get to the bottom of it. Turns out Health Canada allows companies to label an item “0 trans fats” when it has under certain amount of hydrogenated oil. Can you believe it!? So always read the ingredient list even if it says “0 trans fats” (be aware that this oil is sometimes listed as “modified oil”).

This time of year those evil little candy bars seem to be everywhere. We see them in a bowl at the reception desk or in the lunch room, tempting us to have one. After all, they’re so small and cute, they can’t do that much harm, we tell ourselves.

But really, think about it, do you really want to eat this thing that is packed with artificial flavours and hydrogenated oil?! Is it really worth it?!

Ask yourself:

Is It Crap?

What are the ingredients in that tasty morsel?
Is it actually tasty & delicious or am I eating it out of: boredom? something to do? unconsciousness? feeling uncomfortable? obligation?
Is it made with artificial flavour and hydrogenated oil? Or is it real made with natural ingredients?
What are natural ingredients you wonder? If you can’t pronounce it or don’t know what it means then it’s crap. Pretty simple, huh!?
Consider how you will feel after you eat it: Crap makes you feel like crap!

Be picky! Be choosy! Don’t eat crap! Trust me it’s not worth it.

You are an adult and you can go and buy yourself some candy whenever you want.

If you really are craving a treat go buy yourself something made with real wholesome ingredients. Go to a real chocolate store or Whole Foods, there are so many choices now. You can get chocolate made with real cocoa, cheesies made with real cheese, organic popcorn that is not packed with yellow dye, homemade cookies, there’s so much out there if you really want it. You will start to be able to tell the difference between real and fake food and pretty soon you’ll have hard time eating the “crap” because it tastes like, well, crap.

Don’t eat crap!

FOR KIDS:

After I had my son and he was old enough to participate in Halloween I got worried thinking about all the hydrogenated oil, artificial flavours, dyes and general crap that would be going into his body with all that Halloween candy.

So this is what I did:

I let him have all the candy he wanted on Halloween night and the day after.
I explained to him my concerns about the candy and how bad it was.
I offered to trade his candy bag for a toy (he LOVED the idea!).

If he was feeling really sad about giving up his candy then I’d get him a few treats made with wholesome ingredients.
Get the candy out of the house, out of sight, out of mind. If you stash it or you might eat it!

What to do with the candy? Leave it the alley, take it to your office, community centre, food bank or just throw it away, it’s garbage anyway.

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This Valentine’s Day let’s love OURSELVES:

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Funny, entertaining and insightful:

1) Don’t multi-task, be present
2) Don’t pontificate
3) Use open ended questions
4) Go with the flow – thoughts will come into your mind let them flow out
5) If you don’t know, say you don’t know
6) Don’t equate your experience with theirs, it is not about you
7) Try not to repeat yourself
8) Stay out of the weeds
9) Listen – most important
10) Be brief

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#wisdom

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SELF-Esteem. Thoughts?

A post shared by Will Smith (@willsmith) on

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What if there was something you could right now that would have an immediate and long lasting positive benefit for your brain including mood and focus and it would also protect your brain from depression, Alzheimers and dementia, would you do it?

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