5% to willow breast cancer support at whole foods

Tomorrow, Wednesday September 12 (10am-6pm) is another 5% day at Whole Foods Market. As I have said many times before, Whole Foods Market is an indulgence, but 5% of the net sales going to Willow Breast Cancer Support Canada is a good reason to indulge. Willow provides free services, information and emotional support to those affected by breast cancer. Pack your camera, head on down to Yorkville, stalk some celebs while you have a coffee, then go grab some goodies at Whole Foods (make sure to check out their baked goods!)

what I ate

Good morning, and welcome to my photos of three days of food! This was a great challenge and really got me paying more attention to what I was eating. But then again, being pregnant, there were a few indulgences and also some laziness. But overall, I think I did pretty well. Let me know what you think!

Day 1:

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Breakfast was grapefruit juice, blueberry yogurt (sweetened with honey, not aspartame!) with bran flakes. I prefer kashi cereals, but this is what we had in the house. The apple was sort of a mid-morning snack.

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Lunch was a yummy lentil/brown rice soup I made. It was so easy, and tasted amazing. If anyone would like the recipe, let me know – I also have some bonus pictures of the soup making process I will post another time.

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Dinner was sheppard’s pie made with with roasted garlic mashed potatoes, and salad with home-made balsamic/honey-mustard dressing. Sheppard’s pie is one of my husband’s favorite meals.

Day 2:

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Breakfast was grapefruit juice, whole grain toast with almond butter and ground flaxseeds (lots of fiber here!), and yogurt was for mid-morning snack.

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The lentil/rice soup makes another appearance for lunch (it’s great having soup available for days!) along with cucumber sticks, and I managed to get 10 minutes of sun outside for my vitamin D, before the bees came.

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It was Friday, and we felt like a treat for dinner, so we tried a place near our house called Portugrill, which makes portuguese-style roasted chicken. I got 1/4 chicken white, with rice and roasted veggies. Was decent, but not as tasty as the downtown portuguese places.

Day 3:

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The day before I had received some almost-too ripe fruit and veggies from a friend, and was going to spend the day making things out of them, so to get some energy, we decided to go to our favorite breakfast place. I had a fried egg and cheese on whole wheat sandwich, with a cup of decaf. Didn’t think that was really picture worthy, so took a pic of the strawberry banana muffin I ended up making instead (had as a snack!)

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Lunch was home-made guacamole which used up my friend’s avocados and tomatoes, plus some of her goat yogurt. It was sooooo good. I also made baked garlic pita chips for dipping. I have the recipe if anyone is interested!

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Well, I had big plans for this last dinner, I was going to make salmon and veggies in foil so people who haven’t done this before could see how to do it, but here some of the laziness set in. It was Sunday night, I had been shopping/baking/guacamoling all day, I was feeling big and fat, and I just couldn’t be bothered! So, I still did pretty well by whipping up this romaine, cucumber and broccoli salad with tuna, topped with my home-made dressing. The fish in foil trick will make an appearance on the blog at some point!

Hope you all enjoyed this little peek into my food world. Remember, please ask for recipes if you like – the muffins, guacamole and soup were all excellent!

Thanks again Sarah, for initiating this challenge!

my food exposed

Lately I have been making an effort to visit new blogs, and I stumbled across Living To Feel Good which is Sarah’s blog who lives in California and is going back to school for nutrition. Her posts are about all sorts of topics, but the one which caught my eye was her challenge to have people post 3 days worth of their meals on their blogs so everyone can get new ideas about what to eat. I think this is great, and I am up for the challenge. So, make sure to check back here next Monday, September 10 when I will have my meals posted. You will get a bigger glimpse into my food world!

If anyone is interested in participating, check Sarah’s blog for the rules and let her know you will take part. Not much time left as the pics need to be up Monday morning!

world blog day – explore some new blogs

Blog Day 2007 So I just found out this morning (from reading other blogs!) that today is the 3rd annual Blog Day. From the website blogday.org: “BlogDay was created with the belief that bloggers should have one day dedicated to getting to know other bloggers from other countries and areas of interest. On that day Bloggers will recommend other blogs to their blog visitors. With the goal in mind, on this day every blogger will post a recommendation of 5 new blogs. This way, all blog readers will find themselves leaping around and discovering new, previously unknown blogs.”

I was going to update my blogroll soon with more blogs that I read on a regular basis, so figured this was the perfect time to do it, and introduce them to you.
Here are 5 blogs you should check out:

Healthy Dialoguethe blog of CityNews Health Specialist Laura DiBattista
Those of you in Toronto are probably familiar with Laura, and most definitely CityNews. Laura uses her blog to discuss topics which she reports on for CityNews, and gives it a personal twist. It is always informative, and often sparks interesting discussions. Anyone who is interested in their health and likes to keep abreast of local news will definitely want to bookmark this site!

Elastic Waist
As described on their home page: “Rants and musings on weight, body image, celebrities, fitness, food and other fixations.” They deliver all this and more. Pretty much everything you think you want to know about is on this site. There are instructional recipe videos, celebrity gossip roundups, interviews, highlights from other blogs about weight loss, and it just goes on. I always find something that gets my attention every day. Definitely worth a daily visit.

Back in Skinny Jeans
Stephanie Quilao is just like you and me. She embodies the every-woman who struggles with the pressures society has put on us to be thin, look great, be cool, etc. Through her own personal stories, inspirational quotes, links to interesting news stories, and the record of her own personal weight loss (including dietary, exercise and emotional tracking) she has created a blog where we can all feel at home, and know that we are not the only ones. You know what I mean. I am positive that most of you will be able to relate to her posts.

Cupcakes Take The Cake
What can I say – I like to look at pictures of cupcakes. But these are no ordinary pictures. They are handpicked by Rachel Kramer Bussel from the submissions to the Cupcakes Take The Cake flickr pool (and many of them are what can only be described as works of art). In addition to the pics, there are often interviews with bakers, notice of cool products, and other cupcake related information. Plus the photos are posted all throughout the day, so whenever you have a spare minute, you can check for a new piece of cupcake porn to get you through!

Baking and Books
The first thing I loved about this blog was the design. The food photos are amazing, and the overall design, including the font, layout, etc is so sleek and compact. But the real value is in the content. Ariela posts mouthwatering recipes from a plethora of cookbooks, and also reviews many of them (as well as reviewing non-food related books). There is the occasional interview with a chef, baker, food writer, etc, as well as her own personal stories scattered throughout the posts. You get drawn in by her openness and beautiful photography, not to mention the cute little extras like the factoids at the top of the page, and her personal workout and daily activity logs. A great place to find out about cookbooks and recipes you may never had heard of.

Hope you enjoy exploring these blogs, and stay tuned for juicy new content right here on The Urban Nutritionist!

coupon book giveaway, changes coming

Very soon there will be some major changes to my blog. I can’t wait for you all to see them! Things have been very busy around here, what with working at the trade shows, writing for Torontoist, and general nutritionist duties! Thought you might like this pic of me at the Green Living Show working for The Healthy Shopper again (I’m on the left!)

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This time I got to talk to a lot of people about Nut Thins, a nut/rice cracker made by Blue Diamond which is gluten-free. I knew that there were a lot of people suffering with celiac disease, which is when the body cannot digest the proteins in wheat, rye, and barley resulting in a lot of suffering and big changes in lifestyle, but did not realize just how many until I encountered it first hand at the show. It seemed like about 1 in 10 people came by and said “I have celiac disease” or “My brother has celiac disease” or “Our friend has celiac disease.” They were all happy to find another tasty and convenient product that they could actually eat. It felt great to be able to hear their stories and answer their questions. One of my favorite blogs is Gluten-Free Girl, written by Shauna James, who has celiac disease and has finished her first cookbook. Her writing is extremely personal and poignant – I am sure her book is going to be a huge success, and there are obviously plenty of people ready and waiting for more gluten-free recipes. I am planning on doing a story on this subject for Torontoist – stay tuned!

I have saved the best news for last. The Healthy Shopper coupon book is now available in natural food stores, containing over $110.00 in savings on amazing natural and organic products!
healthyshopperbook1.jpgThe only problem is, they can be hard to find, they get grabbed fast leaving none for you, and if you order one online, you have to pay shipping. I will send one of these hot little numbers to the first THREE people (living in Canada) to comment with the top three questions they would ask a nutritionist. The coupons are good across Canada, so if you are outside of Ontario, you still qualify!

Now, go outside, soak up some vitamin D, and enjoy your weekend!

why did I wait so long…

It is funny how life works. I have been on LinkedIN (yet another online networking community, mostly corporate professionals) for awhile, and never expected to get much out of it, although I am connected to a few people. Out of the blue, I got a request to connect from Trina Hoadley-Seaforth, who owns Seaforth Martial Arts Centre (SMAC) with her husband Gregory, who found me through a mutual friend, saying she was interested in referring clients to a Nutritionist. Well now, it seems the system can work – and a special thanks to Jill Murray who was the “friend in the middle”.

Trina invited me to a free event that SMAC was doing, a kind of martial arts fitness bootcamp for their friends, to give back, and raise awareness. In the past, to go to an event and be exposed to people I did not know, and be doing probably “embarrassing” things like kicking and punching and grunting would have been out of the question, but the new me was raring to go, especially since I have always been interested in martial arts.

fit-friends-of-smac-005-small.JPG This is me with BOB – SMAC’s body opponent bag, whom we were all asked to pose with. Trina and Gregory are great people, extremely friendly and talented. I was so impressed with the workout, and it was designed for you not only to sweat like crazy, but also have a ton of fun. We got to learn some basic moves like punching, ducking, kneeing, kicking, and the best for last – breaking a board. The fact that they added in the board breaking as a mental exercise in overcoming obstacles was great. After all martial arts is about the body and the mind, as well as the soul, and I felt that I had a complete workout of all three. Afterwards, I felt amazing!

fit-friends-of-smac-025-small.JPGHere I am kneeing Trevor, who took quite a beating from us. He never faltered through all that grabbing, pulling and kneeing – thanks Trevor!

SMAC is currently offering corporate bootcamps, private lessons, as well as a children’s program for 3-7 year olds called lil’ dragons, and also do children’s birthday parties.

I highly recommend checking out Seaforth Martial Arts Centre if you, your company or your child is interested in martial arts. It is a fun and intense form of fitness which goes hand in hand with nutrition for achieving improved health of your body, mind and soul.

how sweet it is…

cupcakes may not seem like something a nutritionist would be talking about, but as a holistic nutritionist, I believe we have to have balance in all parts of our life. there is definitely a time and a place for a cupcake – and these cupcakes are special. the cupcakes themselves are from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over The World, by Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero, and they are awesome! the frosting however, that is my creation – a standard buttercream recipe, but colored with herbs. as a promoter of natural alternatives, I love the idea of using herbs as coloring instead of commercial dyes. instead of maybe getting a headache, having an allergic reaction, or worse from commercial dyes, why not use something that’s side effects may include cancer prevention and an increase in vitality?

This Wednesday February 7, I will be doing a presenation on herbs as food coloring at the Women’s Culinary Network dinner in Toronto. Stay tuned for a recap and hopefully some pictures after the event.