Spring Cleaning Series #7

Detoxification with juicing

Juicing.  Ohhh the joy!!

I love to juice, I love cleaning and prepping piles of beautiful produce and I really love the beautiful colors that poor out of my juicer!!  I love how I feel when I juice.  If I could, I would stay home and juice all the time.  But seriously….. I don’t have that kind of time. Who does??

You should make time, however. It is rewarding, enlightening, spiritual.  It makes you really appreciate nature and the goodness it so readily supplies to us.  I prefer to juice fast for 2 to 3 days.  I have done 7. Not going to lie. It is intense.

If you are interested in juicing on a serious level I refer you out to Joe.  Watch Fat, Sick, & Nearly Dead.  If you really want to watch a movie on what it is like to juice watch SuperJuice Me. Here is the link to Jason Vale’s site as well.  They both will give you the machine info, the programs, the recipe books, anything you could ever want to know about juicing will be found in one of these two locations!

My personal favorite blend in the juicer is~20160124_114352

  • 1 beet, with a leaf or 2
  • Carrots
  • Apples, sweeter the better!
  • Orange
  • Lemon, with peel
  • A bit of Ginger
  • Celery
  • Cucumber

Make sure your produce is organic!! This is so important when you are juicing.  What is in and on the produce is making a fast detour to your bloodstream, besides putting those nasty things in your body while trying to cleanse them out does seem counter-productive, yes?

**Juicing is a level of detox that needs to be taken seriously however.  Please make sure you are following a program and consulting with a professional if you take your cleansing to this level. 🙂 **

Happy March!!

Spring Cleaning Series #6

Detoxification continued.. Where do you start?

Before diving into a cleanse head first I suggest making some dietary changes.  Start cutting out some of the bad habits and replace them with good habits.  Cut down on caffeine and set your daily water goal.  Cut out empty carbohydrate snacks like chips and crackers and have some vegies prepped in the fridge.  I have found that if you dive into to a time set cleanse of 3, 5, 7, 10 days  the tendency is to focus on the end of that goal and then return to the old ways when the cleanse is over.  Make cleansing part of your daily routine.  When new, good habits are formed you can then dive into a deeper cleanse with more success!

Most Congesting foods to your system:

  • Drugs
  • Allergenic foods
  • Organ Meats
  • Hydrogenated fats
  • Fried foods
  • Refined Flour
  • Meat
  • Sweets
  • Milk
  • Baked goods

While Cleansing increase these foods:

  • Roots
  • Squashes
  • Vegies
  • Fruits
  • Greens
  • Water
  • Spirulina
  • Chlorella
  • Blue/Green Algae
  • Herbs

Another way you can get a cleansing boost everyday is to begin your day with a Lemon, Pepper, Water Master Cleanse.  This will wake you up and get the Lymphatic System moving!!

  • 8oz of filtered water
  • 2 tbls Fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tbls Organic Grade B Maple Syrup (or Organic Raw Honey)
  • 1/10 (sprinkle) Cayenne Pepper

Drink with a straw so you do not damage the enamel on your teeth with the lemon juice.  After you finish rinse your mouth well to remove the acidity of the lemon.


Happy March!!



Spring Cleaning Series #5

Spring Cleaning YOU!!!
This week I will be sharing information on detoxification.

So many questions about detoxification.  Do you really need to? How often? How many days? Do you juice cleanse? Do you follow a specific ‘detox diet’? Do you fast? Do I really have to give up coffee?

Let’s discuss the big question first. Do you need to cleanse/detox?

Yes, we all do. Everyone needs to cleanse/detox. It is nearly impossible to avoid toxins, even the most well balanced diet and green living person can benefit from some form of cleansing or detoxification.

To begin we need a short science class:

The body has 5 pathways to remove waste and toxins.

  1. GASTROINTESTINAL~ This consists of your liver, gallbladder, colon, and GI tract.
  2. URINARY~ Kidney, bladder, and urethra.
  3. RESPIRATORY~ Lungs, bronchial tubes, throat, sinuses, and nose.
  5. SKIN & DERMAL~ Sweat, sebaceous glands, and tears.

When these waste removal systems are working well and your immune system is strong, your body can handle basic, everyday exposure to toxins and remove them effectively.

Let’s discuss basic, everyday exposure.  This does not mean what it used to. Our water is full of chemicals, our food is full of chemicals, our air is full of chemicals…. see where I am going with this?  Alcohol in hand sanitizer, the chemicals we clean with, chemicals in our face and body care products. Women put an average of 168 chemicals on their bodies DAILY.  We consume twice as many chemicals as we did 50 years ago.  I think basic, everyday exposure is basically out of control.

Your body handles these toxins by neutralizing, transforming, or eliminating them.  It may use antioxidants to neutralize an invading free radical, your liver may filter them and send them out as waste.  Your blood will carry waste to the kidneys to be cleared out in the urine, your skin will clear toxins through sweat, and your respiratory system will clear it with mucous.  Your lymphatic system transports vascular fluid and waste, moving it through 500 filtration and collection points — your lymph nodes. At each successive node the lymph fluid is filtered and bacteria is removed.  Your body is an amazing machine, designed to remove the daily poison it is exposed to.

Until you overload it. Until you are chronically ill.  Until you are stressed and sleep deprived.  Until the basic, everyday exposure is more than it can handle.  When this happens the body enters a state of congestion/stagnation.  In this state the body cannot effectively clear its waste.

The need to detox varies from person to person based on many things including a well balanced whole food diet, regular exercise, and stress level.  The ‘healthier’ you are the more effective your body will be at relying on its own daily elimination cycle.

You take in toxins in a variety of ways:

  • Environmental, air quality both indoor and outdoor
  • Chemicals, medications, and pathogens in our food and water
  • Allergens
  • Microbes~ bacteria, yeast, parasites
  • Drugs
  • Caffeine
  • Sugar
  • Processed foods
  • Internally~ our bodies make toxins in the normal everyday function that need to be eliminated.

Some signs of a toxic overload include:

  • headache
  • fatigue
  • mucus problems
  • aches and pains
  • digestive problems
  • allergies
  • environmental sensitivities

Detoxification will help clear excess toxins from the body, neutralize them, or transform them.  It will clear excess mucus and congestion.  It involves making a lifestyle change that will reduce the intake of toxins and encourage elimination.

An easy way to accomplish this is to avoid chemicals in your food and water.  Reduce the chemicals in your home, your cleaning supplies, laundry soap, and beauty care products.  Reduce or remove toxic food like sugar, alcohol, excessive caffeine, tobacco, and drugs.  Drink purified water and eat more fruits and vegetables.

***Detoxing too fast can make you feel ill.  Increase your fluids and slow down you detox if you are not feeling well.  Fasting should always be done under professional supervision. Avoid heavy detox while pregnant.***

Spring is a season of renewal!!  It is the perfect time to cleanse.  As the week goes on I will share more detox tips, juicing ideas, and more!!!

Happy March!!

Source: Staying Healthy with Nutrition, Elson M Hass, MD http://haashealthonline.com/

Spring Cleaning Series #4

Spring Clean your Mind!!

Yes, you read that right.  The last 3 days contained a lot of information.  So now take a breath. A long, deep breath in. Hold it for a count of 5, deep exhale. Repeat 3 more times.

Still with me? Good!!

Today and tomorrow take some time for YOU.  Practice the deep breathing. I know it seems silly at first but it is an extremely healthy practice.  It really will clean your mind and bring oxygen flow to your cells. Practice 3 to 4 times each day.

Here is a link to my favorite deep breathing exercise.

4,7,8 Breath technique

Here is his link for 3 different breathing exercises.

Three Breathing Exercises

Happy March!!

Spring Cleaning Series #3

Today’s Spring Cleaning item is your Cooking Oil!!

What oils do you cook with?

How do you store them?

Can you tell if they are rancid?

Are you afraid of Saturated Fat?

I have found that oil is a huge source of confusion for most of my clients.  What kind do you use?  One article will say one thing, and the next one tells you the opposite.  Although thanks to Rachael Ray, everyone uses EVOO (Extra Virgin Olive Oil).  But sadly, she has it a tiny bit wrong….I will get back to that in a bit.

20160304_195029How do you chose an oil?  I can’t chose just one, I cook with many different oils.



First Rule: Do NOT be afraid of fat. Fat is good, Fat is Essential, Fat makes your food taste good, Fat provides energy, Fat is required to adsorb A, D, E, and K vitamins, Fat is required to use protein.  Love fat, do not hate it. <3

Degrees of fat saturation:

  1. Saturated~ Extremely stable at high heat. The best oil for cooking. Unrefined Coconut oil is the ideal cooking oil.  You may also use butter or lard.
  2. Monounsaturated~ Relatively stable at low to medium heat.  Olive oil is in this category  but it is unstable at just 200 degrees causing it to release free radicals and become unhealthy to eat at a very low temperature.  It is served best cold and not for cooking.  (This is where Rachael has it wrong).  You can also use Sesame Oil for a light saute.
  3. Polyunsaturated~ Unstable at high heat, these oils release free radicals when heated and are not healthy for cooking.
  • Safflower.
  • Grapeseed.
  • Sunflower.
  • Walnut.
  • Soybean.
  • Corn.
  • Cottonseed source

Then there is Avacado Oil. 

“From an omega standpoint, avocado oil gives you a nutritional profile similar to olive oil. Nearly 70% of avocado oil is oleic acid, a monounsaturated omega-9 fatty acid. Aside from the significant monounsaturated content, avocado oil is about 16% saturated fatty acids and 14% polyunsaturated.” source

Pretty decent Oil with a smoke point of 510 degrees.  It seems to withstand rancidity well.  I am kind of in love with this oil.

AND Almond Oil!

Great for desserts. Can be heated to 495 degrees. Full of healthy Omega 3 fatty acids.

Palm Oil.

A blog post all by itself.  It is a saturated/monounsaturated oil. It is amazing for high heat cooking..think crispy egg roll.  But it is surrounded by drama.  I buy it once in a while as a treat, only from Nutiva.  I trust that their oil is sourced without damage to the rainforest.


Nutiva Shortening






Now don’t get me wrong, please don’t throw away your Olive Oil…unless it is rancid.  Just remember these few things:

  • It goes rancid very easily. Store in a cool dark place. Buy it in small bottles. Always replace the cap when you are done.
  • Do not heat it above 200 degrees.
  • It is often diluted with low quality oils (this will not be on the label).  Make sure you research your brand.
  • “To further help protect extra virgin olive oil from oxidation, Dr. Moerck suggests putting one drop of astaxanthin into the bottle. You can purchase astaxanthin, which is an extremely potent antioxidant, in soft gel capsules. Just prick it with a pin and squeeze the capsule into the oil. The beautiful thing about using astaxanthin instead of another antioxidant, such as vitamin E, is that it is naturally red, whereas vitamin E is colorless, so you can tell the oil still has astaxanthin in it by its color. As the olive oil starts to pale in color, you know it’s time to throw it away.” source

Healthy oils that are not for cooking:

  • Flaxseed
  • Hemp Oil
  • Grapeseed
  • Hazelnut


  • Soybean
  • Safflower
  • Canola
  • Corn
  • Sunflower (some exception here)

For some in depth info on fats:  The Skinny on Fats

My spring cleaning challenge to you:  Clean out you cooking oil cupboard.  Store oils like Walnut, sesame, and delicate oils in the fridge.  Buy quality olive oil and store it properly. Oil should never be stored by the stove where it will get warm.  Throw out your old rancid oil.  Check out the Avocado Oil, it is at costco 😉  Buy some unrefined coconut oil for cooking, It is amazing!

Happy March!!

Spring Cleaning Series #2


Let’s just get this one out of the way.  I know that right now a lot of you are thinking that you may just skip this blog post!  Stay with me!! I am not saying you can NEVER eat a slice of birthday cake again, but let’s just take a moment to realize what an addictive and harmful substance this is and consider cleaning it out of our daily routine.

It would take me numerous blog posts to really give you all the necessary information so today I am going to refer you to a video and a few links that already have some great info.  If you decide you may want to make a serious change feel free to contact me and I can help you navigate the endless amount of diets, websites, and information out in the world!

We are genetically wired to LOVE sweet!  Our brain has a reward center. When it receives the sweet information it says “YES!! More of that please!!”

To kick the sugar habit we literally have to ‘rewire’ our brain.  Change the way it thinks, convince it that broccoli is fabulous.

My suggestion for March is to give up the sweets for the month, read labels and take note of the hidden sugar in your life. It is in your milk, your yogurt, juice, nutrition bars, cereal, crackers, everywhere!!

The average person eats 60 lbs of sugar a year, that is approximately 120 cups of sugar!! That is 6 of these 10 lb bags in case you need a visual!!















The American Heart Association recommends no more than 9 teaspoons for men and no more than 6 teaspoons for women. We are eating at least twice that on average.

Watch this video on how much sugar is in a can of Coke.soda-sugar

Here are a few links to look over this month.  I will follow up with a post on the different types of sugar, how it hides, and the dangers of artificial sweeteners.

Happy March!!!!

Food Babe, Sugar Detox

TED Talk video on sugar in the brain

How does sugar effect the brain?


Spring Cleaning Series

As we welcome March and the upcoming beauty of Spring, I thought a little spring cleaning was in order!
Throughout the month I will post a short (maybe long) idea, nutrition tip, or other helpful way to help you welcome in Spring!! Spring is a time to cleanse, a time to grow, and a time to shine!! Happy March everyone!

Today’s Spring Cleaning tip : WATER!

I know, it sounds so simple.

Try to be mindful of your water intake, keep a log if you need to.  Pre fill your daily water containers, whatever works for you!

Our bodies can survive up to 8 weeks without food, but only days without water. Water makes up 55-60% of our body mass.  It is found in all of our tissues and cells.  We require water to transport nutrients, to cushion our bones and joints, regulate our body temperature, remove waste and toxins, and so many other necessary functions.

We make only 8% of required water ourselves, the other 92% must be acquired thorough food and beverages.  Water cannot be stored, it must be consumed daily. Preferably in small amounts throughout the day.

A good ‘Rule of Thumb’ is to drink half your body weight in ounces.  So if you weigh 140 lbs you should drink 70 ounces of water a day.  Diuretics like coffee make this number higher. (1.5ounces per ounce of diuretic)

Water can be too much of a good thing!! Do not drink more than 1 gallon of water a day.  It can be toxic at high levels, causing you to lose electrolytes from excessive urination.

Quality filtered water is also important.  So many toxins reside in our tap water such as medicine residue, flouride, and chlorine.  Make sure you have a good water filter at home and good glass containers to drink out of.

Water bottles are expensive, low quality (Auquafina and Dasani are plain tap water), a HUGE strain on the environment, and they leech the plastic chemicals into your drinking water.

One of the worst things you can do is reuse a plastic water bottle over and over. Yuck!!!

“According to the most recent report by The Association of Postconsumer Plastic Recyclers,2 only 28 percent of water bottles are currently recycled in the US. What happens to the rest of them?

They end up in:

  1. Landfills, where they can remain for thousands of years, leaching toxins into the ground
  2. Incinerators, where the chemicals are released into the air
  3. Oceans, where they slowly disintegrate into tiny particles, turning portions of our waters into a plastic stew. In this way plastic also enters the food chain, and kills wildlife.”  source


Here’s a great video on bottled water! The Story of Bottled Water

As far as containers for your water, I prefer glass, although you will often see me with a BPA free plastic one with a straw.. I love having a straw. (Also reusable. Do not get me started on the environmental impact of straws!) Klean Kanteen has wonderful light weight containers.  They even make water bottles with built in filters in case you need to refill with tap water when you are out and about.

My Spring day 1 challenge to you~ Not only drink more water, but consider the water you are drinking.  Drink clean, healthy water that does not have a negative impact the environment!!


Hello Honey!


So many questions, so many brands, how do we know what to buy?

Well, I did some extensive research for you. 🙂

I will give you some basic info, I will give you links if you would like to read further, and I will post some links on where to buy the best honey!

What is honey?

According to Wikipedia:

Honey /ˈhʌni/ is a sweet food made by bees using nectar from flowers. The variety produced by honey bees is the one most commonly referred to, as it is the type of honey collected by most beekeepers and consumed by people. Wikipedia

Honey is also defined as a sugar substitute. I suppose at it’s basic store bought level it is just that, a sweetener.  Raw honey, honey that has not been processed and filtered, is so much more than a sweetener.  It is a food and it has amazing health benefits. It is full of antioxidants, vitamins, minerals,and enzymes.

The history of honey goes back approximately 8000 years, to ancient Chinese, Egyptian, Islamic, and Biblical times. It has an extensive history as a healing substance and in many cultures that is still its use today.


Raw honey has a ‘forever’ shelf life. It does not seem to go bad.  Honey, in its raw state is naturally anti microbial. It is very low moisture and few bacteria or microorganisms can survive without moisture.  It is also very acidic with a PH of 3.5 to 4.  This acidic state will kill off almost anything.

If you would like a bit more on the science aspect this is a nice article that gives you a bit more on the ‘why’ and ‘how’.



Rumor….Honey was found in Egyptian tombs.
The 2000 year old honey found in the tombs was deemed still edible!
I cannot find anything to back this up however, but do we need our honey to last that long? Personally I use mine pretty quick!

Want to watch a quick little video on how we get Raw Honey?

Click here.

Here is one on processed honey.

Click here.

Quick disclaimer: Honey should not be given to children under 1 year.  Most of us are aware of the Botulism worry of giving honey to a small child.  Dr. Greene has a fantastic article on this. Here is the link if you would like to read more.

Benefits of adding Raw Honey to your daily diet:
  • Replacing sugar with honey results in less weight gain and lower blood sugar levels.
  • Provides a ready supply of energy. (Making it a great addition to your morning smoothie.)
  • Honey at night time helps produce melatonin, aiding in a more restful sleep.
  • Boosts your immune system.
  • Contains antioxidants, vitamins, enzymes, and minerals.
  • It has been shown to heal your gut.  It has been used to *treat many gastrointestinal issues including, gastritis, ulcers, diarrhea, and has been shown to be anti-inflammatory to the intestinal tract. It also has an antibacterial effect on H. Pylori . *ncbi article
  • The wound healing benefits of honey are amazing! Manuka Honey
  • It is relatively free of adverse effects. Allergy to honey is rare.


Want a great list of uses for honey? Click here.

What kind of honey should you use? Where do you get it?

Liquid or solid?

All honey is liquid when bottled.  Good quality honey will crystallize over time.  The filtering and heating process is what turns honey the golden color and allows it to stay in liquid form.  It also removes most of the nutritional benefits and alters the taste.

Local raw honey is said to help with allergies.  Raw honey still has the bee pollen in it.  This helps your immune system defend itself against seasonal allergens.  Remember, once processed it no longer has the bee pollen in it.  It needs to bee in raw form to be effective in this manner.  You can google search for local bee keepers in your area.  If you are local to Skagit Valley we have a few sources including Brookfield Farms in Bellingham and Bingalingbees here in the Valley.

Bees have a large range of flight, around 2 miles. They have been known to fly 2 to 3 times that however.  That said, it is relatively hard to say honey is certified organic.  The area the bees fly can be up to a 2 to 4 mile radius of the hive. That entire radius (16 square miles minimally) needs to be pesticide free.

The US does not seem to care to regulate organic honey, so it is not hard to put a sticker on your product, although this comes with a healthy fine if caught.  Brookfield Farm has a great blog post on the ‘standards’ for the US.  The amount of pesticides used in farming has had a very large impact on our bee community.  In 2015 the reported loss of bees was at just over 40%.  I encourage you to do some research on these amazing little creatures.  Without bees to pollinate we will not have food to eat.  We need to protect our bees.

Pesticide Action Network

Honey Apiary, Honey Bees and Pesticides

Alright, off my ‘Bee Box’ and moving on to where to get Raw Honey. I have mentioned local sources already. But what if you really want Organic Raw Honey?

YS Organic Honey


You can buy it on Amazon.

Enjoy your honey!!!!








The Benefits of Lemons

Follow up on the lemon ice cubes!!

The lemon peel contains 5 to 10 times more vitamins than the juice itself!! The peel will help to eliminate toxins from the body.

Studies are showing lemons are effective in killing cancer cells, allegedly 10,000 times stronger than chemotherapy. Lemons have a remarkable effect on cysts and tumors. They destroy internal parasites and worms. They are anti-microbial helping to fight bacterial infections and fungi. Lemon can help regulate high blood pressure, act as an anti-depressant, and combat stress and nervous disorders.

Freezing your lemons has been shown to activate their cancer and inflammation fighting properties.
Source: NaturalNews.com

The links below are a few more articles to read if you would like additional reading material on the fantastic benefits of lemons!


The Living Well Smoothie

Hello and welcome!!!  I decided that my first EVER blog post should be about the one thing I get the most questions about:

“What do I put in my smoothie everyday?”

I use the smoothie as a way to get good nutrition into my son and husband, to get a quick healthy breakfast into me as I run out the door to teach Zumba, and mostly to sneak KALE into our bodies. (The boys are not big fans of this superfood!)

I am going to be very product specific, I have tried a lot of things and these are my favorites.  Feel free to modify your choices, just remember to use organic and non-GMO choices. 🙂

20160107_082422See. Kale!!! Shhhhh, Don’t tell them 😉

First thing first. You need a good blender. A little 30.00 Oster blender will not stand up to the daily smoothie. It will get you going, but if you are going to make this a daily choice for your health you will need to invest in something that can handle it.

Personally I use a Ninja blender, I find the individual cups super handy. Here is a link: Nutri Ninja

Secondly, you will need a good protein powder. I LOVE Nutiva products. Specifically the Hemp protein high fiber blend.  It is dairy free which is a must for me.  Hemp is an amazing source of protein and tastes great in the smoothie. Hemp is a plant based protein full of essential amino acids and Omega 3 and 6.  It is also a sustainable, renewable, and an environmentally friendly plant. Here are your links:

Nutiva protein +fiber

Amazon Link Nutiva protein powder

With my protein powder I also add the Standard Process SP Complete, a vegan source of Whole Food Nutrition.  SP Complete contains rice protein, an extremely bio-available source of protein. It is a non-dairy source of amino acids. It supports healthy liver function and contains Flaxseed, grapeseed extracts, and cruciferous vegetables.

Here is a link to the Standard Process website for SP Complete, although this product must be ordered through a healthcare professional. (like me!)

SP Complete Dairy free

Now that the official business is out of the way, let’s make a smoothie!!


  1. Water and Chia Seeds
  2. Ice
  3. Greens
  4. Berries and banana
  5. Coconut Oil
  6. Raw honey
  7. Powders
  8. Top off with juice
  9. Blend
  10. Enjoy

Here are some in depth details of my favorite smoothie items~

20160107_082638Nutiva Coconut oil and Raw Honey

Nutiva Coconut Oil is Organic, Non-GMO, and does not harden to rock form when it’s cold.  Coconut Oil is a dense energy source, great for your brain, and helps curb your appetite.

Raw honey!! LOVE! Such a great way to sweeten up your smoothie plus it has 80 different substances important to human nutrition.  Raw honey contains vitamins, minerals, live enzymes, hormones, it is anti-microbial, and anti-bacterial.

20160107_082622The Fruit of the smoothie.

I love to cut up my bananas ahead of time when they are perfectly ripe and freeze them all sliced up and ready to go.  I use a very large cup of blueberries. They are such a wonderful superfood.  I get the Costco organic berries, make sure you buy organic when you get blueberries, they are FULL of pesticides when they are not organic.  I also love the organic Anti-oxidant berry mix from Costco…just make sure you get some berries!!

Speaking of Costco.. it is a great place to get your greens.  Once you get that giant bag home dispense it into smaller ziplocks and freeze them in a gallon ziplock bag.  Keep the used, empty ziplocks in the freezer and refill them.  I can prep a months worth of greens into 3 gallon size ziplocks.

20160107_082850The Juice. Be Careful with this!

I do not use a lot of juice in my smoothie.  They add a lot of sugar to the mix.  I love this Santa Cruz organic mango blend.  Watch for added sugar. Make sure you get JUICE and not sugar water.  You can always make your own juice. 🙂

I love to juice. Juicing makes me super happy!  You can take lemons, oranges, limes…anything you want really, juice it and make ice cubes to drop into your smoothie later.  I take organic lemons, peel and all, blend them and make ice cubes for our smoothies.  So much nutrition in that peel and it’s a great way to get the benefits!

One last piece of advice. Soak your chia seeds for a bit before you blend.  I put the water and chia seeds in about 30 minutes before I make my smoothie. Chia seeds are amazing, full of calcium, fiber, anti-oxidants, vitamins, and minerals. Here is a link giving you 10 great reasons to eat these everyday.

10 Benifits of Chia Seeds

Enjoy your smoothies!!  I wish you a healthy and happy day!