Monthly Gratitudes: November Love List Edition

This month my Love List & Monthly Gratitudes collide! It's been one of the busiest & most stressful months for me. Like anyone else, when life gets busy things like meal planning, healthy eating, movement & sleep become difficult to incorporate.

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I choose to make my health my top priority even during busy times. So, how do I manage to keep my health in the forefront when life gets busy?

Here is a list of a few things that I LOVE & that I find absolutely essential in maintaining health even during the hustle & bustle of life! I'm so grateful for these things because they get me through my busy/stressful times all while keeping my health in check.

Veggie Spiral Slicer: Nothing makes food easier or healthier than a veggie spiral slicer! If you don't already own one, you have to get one! They are not super expensive and a really great investment that you will use time and time again. Spiralizers are a great way to reduce grains in the diet. Just like its name, the spiralizer will cut veggies into long, spiral shapes that resemble pasta noodles. I love using mine for making zucchini noodles in place of pasta, fancy salads like a spiralized beet/mango salad or even fancy garnishes to top dishes. I'm so grateful for my veggie spiral slicer! It has on many occasions made lunches/dinners a breeze all while helping to maintain my health! This is one tool that every kitchen needs!

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Seaweed Snacks: Sea veggies are an important component to a healthy diet. Sea vegetables are incredibly mineral-rich! Specifically, they are high in iodine & selenium - both crucial nutrients for thyroid/hormonal health. I was introduced to seaweed snacks through my naturopath to help regulate a hormonal imbalance. Additionally, they are a great source of Vitamin C. When we're stressed our bodies are depleted of this important vitamin & require much more. Their unique flavour can take some getting used to if you're not familiar with sea veggies. But I have come to love them:) They make an awesome mid-afternoon snack because they are slightly salty and really satisfy cravings - all while being completely health promoting! Way better than pretzels or chips!

Pesto: Oh pesto! Ever since I was a kid I have loved pesto on everything! Now, I really experiment with my pesto. I'll use spinach, kale or cilantro/parsley in place of basil. I'll try adding walnuts, pistachios or hemp-seeds in place of pine nuts and I usually leave dairy out as a personal preference. Pestos are SO simple to make. All ingredients get tossed into a blender. Best part about a pesto is adding tons of beautiful nutrient-dense greens & healthy fats from your raw nuts and olive oil. I'll put it on everything from pizza to pasta and often I'll use it as a dip for raw veggies. My fav is raw thinly sliced sweet potatoes with this pesto recipe:

Easy Dairy-Free Pesto

In a blender combine the following:

Generous serving of basil, spinach, kale, parsley or cilantro or a combination of those

1/4 cup pine nuts, raw walnuts, pistachios or hemp-seeds

1 clove of garlic

1/4 cup of olive oil

1 tbsp fresh lemon juice

water or olive oil as needed for desired consistency

Blend until smooth (or blend less if you prefer some texture to your pesto)

Hemp-seeds: Just like the pesto, I use hemp-seeds on absolutely everything! They are so delicious and such an easy way to ensure you're getting enough protein at each meal. I throw them into my smoothies, salads, pastas, veggie dishes - everything! They are a rich source of omega 3 fats, plant-based protein & fibre! Thanks to the omega 3s they really work to reduce inflammation in the body which is something that we should all be striving for! Plus, they are really easy to digest.

Juicer: My juicer is hands down one of the biggest factors in maintaining my health especially when life gets busy. I often refer to my raw juices as liquid gold because they are literally the best multi-vitamin in a glass! No digestion required with a raw juice! All that goodness goes straight to your cells. When I'm busy, it gets harder to ensure that I'm getting my daily servings of veggies in. To combat that, I will make this super healthy veggie juice:

Everything But The Kitchen Sink Veggie Juice

The beauty of this recipe is using whatever you have on hand in your vegetable crisper. It’s a great juice to make end of week to use up whatever fridge bits you may have left.

Ingredients:

1 sweet potato

1-2 stalks celery

1/2 cucumber

1 tomato

1-2 broccoli stems

1/2 lemon

1 beet

handful of sprouts, spinach or kale

1 inch ginger root

1 garlic clove

pinch of sea salt (goes into your drinking glass - not the juicer)

Directions:

  • Run through your juicer & enjoy immediately or blend together in your high powered blender with some water & run through a sieve or nut milk bag.

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