Spring is in the air

After a l-o-n-g waiting game, spring is here. Rising temps, sunny skies, and the air just feels different. I wake up each morning to even more bird calls than the day before, and I can't help smiling (okay, so maybe I eat breakfast and then smile... but you know what I mean); Spring is renewal, and it's impossible not to jump on that bandwagon.

If you take a minute to just be... you can join the transformation. Birds are everywhere (and often looking for their next apartment under your deck or on your window sill!); flowers push against earth and open into vibrant purples and yellows; squirrels dart about searching for the greens they have been missing all winter, and even the insects are in on the action.  

It's nothing short of amazing to see nature happen. The way she choreographs each step of spring to create a perfected whole. And the crazy part is we generally ignore all the cues she tosses our way − so that like the insects and the animals we can enjoy and benefit...

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Hello There, Honey!

It seems like we are on a constant voyage, searching for optimal health and the Fountain of Youth. Call off the dogs and open your cupboard!

It is reported that bees have produced honey for 10 to 20 million years. Honey is not only one of nature's most delicious gifts; it is also one of her most generous.

Among the safest of foods (unless you are a baby less than a year old, in which case honey should not be ingested!), most dangerous bacteria cannot even survive in honey. In fact, explorers discovered 2,000-year-old jars of honey inside Egyptian tombs; and yes, they were delicious!  

The benefits of RAW honey (RAW means that the honey has not been heated to a temperature exceeding 116 degrees Fahrenheit) have long been celebrated... The Romans used honey (as opposed to gold) to pay their taxes; Cleopatra used honey, daily, as a moisturizer; it was salient throughout the Balkan War (1913) − applied to soldiers' wounds and burns as an antibacterial, healing cover; honey...

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BUYER BE CLEAR 1 (Think Twice...Three Times (!) Before Purchasing Those Cosmetics...)

Ho! Ho! Ho! Got shopping fever?

Malls sparkle with holiday cheer and colorful lights... retail spots are packed with smiling personnel who magically appear to help you fill bags... lists are getting checked off, secrets are growing, and tantalizing cosmetics -- packaged in appealing ways -- abound. But before you start collecting all those colorful, sweet-smelling, youth-enhancing products, know the facts -- and the myths!

Did you know...  

  • that hundreds of ingredients banned in Canada, Europe, and Japan are sold in cosmetics in the United States?
  • that the FDA doesn't review most products found in stores? They don't have the authority to insist that companies test their products for safety or to demand recalls of harmful goods!
  • that the term "hypoallergenic" doesn't mean much at all? There are no governing federal regulations pertaining to that labeling!
  • that over the past three decades, the cosmetic industry's safety panel has evaluated less than 20% of cosmetic ingredients?!...
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Happy Halloween!

Boo! With an open mind and some creativity, there is always a way to honor celebrations with a modern, healthy twist (and wholesome, seasonal choices).

I like to focus more on the adventure of Halloween. This year, we are blessed with one of the most colorful autumns ever. Every car ride feels like new territory as another tree explodes with vibrant color and life. Even the leaf storms those moments when the wind shakes the season along, sending fluttering storms of swirling leaves are incredibly beautiful. Lawns are covered in patchwork colors: reds, golds, oranges. If you stop and take it all in, it is breathtaking.

And so is Halloween... Snickers, Mounds, and Kit Kats aside (no disrespect intended!). It is a day of creativity and expression, of giving and gratitude. As our children (and in many cases, us!) finally change into costumes, faces reflect nothing short of magic. All the decisions, planning and anticipation merge into present moment joy. Whether we don a store bought...

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Cravings! (Give It To Me Now!)

Remember the old cartoons how they'd portray conflicting thought patterns with an angel and a devil? Those characters would suddenly appear on the shoulders of our protagonist, each pulling him in the opposite direction.

 "No, stay strong!"

"You know you want to..."  

"Do what's right."

"Once won't hurt you..."

Yeah, we have all been there. Take food cravings. They are not only our worst enemy, they can seriously disrupt concentration, positive outlooks, and goals. Occasional treats are no big deal, but cravings are obnoxious distractions that actually pull us out of the present moment.    

Flinders University (Australia) scientists Eva Kemps and Marika Tiggemann published their craving related research in Current Directions in Psychological Science (a journal of the Association for Psychological Science) several years ago (sciencedaily.com). They consider the difference between actual hunger (when any food will do) and very specific cravings when you need...

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Why are greens so important for my health?

Why are greens so important for my health, you ask? I'll tell ya... For starters, no other food group complements our basic need for nutrients as perfectly as green veggies. But wait! There's more...

Their attributes practically scream for themselves. Green vegetables are packed with generous amounts of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and phytonutrients. They provide more nutrition per calorie than any other food while providing a significant source of vitamins A, B, C, E, and K (not to mention their richness in minerals such as calcium, magnesium, potassium, and iron).  And the fact that they are packed with fiber means you will stay satisfied longer thus reducing hunger and poor food choices. In addition to helping with weight control, vegetable fiber plays an active role in grabbing toxins from your body before they are absorbed. And their phytonutrients boost the immune system while protecting your body against cellular damage.

But don't run to the market just yet......

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Berry Bliss

Breakfast is so important, but sometimes it doesn't fit into a busy schedule... Yet, how you begin the day will absolutely affect the rest of your day. What goes into our bellies is directly related to how we feel both physically and mentally. And we get to choose: do we select a day of energy or a day of dragging?

If you are a skip-breakfast-and-grab-a-coffee morning person, this blog is for you.

Fact: we need energy. And it can be so easy to grab a quick bowl of cereal or just skip breakfast entirely. But here's the thing − the goal is not just to survive the day; the goal is to thrive throughout the day. Beware the crash and crave rollercoaster. If you begin your morning with caffeinated coffee and sugar you will soon crash and feel too tired to conquer responsibilities with any level of motivation. Instinct will have you reaching for another cup of coffee... and so it continues. 

All is not lost. Hello, smoothies! A quick alternative to a fast breakfast, smoothies...

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Movement Through Pilates... A Universal Language

Women. No two are the same. We're the inspiration for poetry − and the subject of many coaching books for men. My fitness passion and extensive work with Pilates at Flow Pilates Centre − along with a host of inspirational and effective workout genres −  gives me the opportunity to teach, work with, and know many women in all their diversity. And always, our common denominator is exercise. Movement creates shifts... something we all feel, something from which there's no turning back.  

The benefits are just too great.  I honor Pilates... and again and again I see how movement provides:

  • Strong, powerful bodies
  • Relaxation & stress reduction (leading to mental acuity, creativity, and the ability to solve problems)
  • Mood elevation (Love serotonin!)  
  • Youth (Want to keep up with your kids? Work out!)
  • Improved immune systems (and major disease prevention)
  • Rocking bodies (Skinny jeans are fabulous!)
  • Joint flexibility
  • A daily challenge (Regardless of...
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Healthy Chocolate Smoothie

Blending is a great way to get nutrients into your diet. Blended recipes can be a great meal replacement with loaded value. Here is why:

  • The fiber in smoothies (especially green smoothies) has a cleansing effect on the colon.
  • Smoothies are more filling than juices and more satisfying for extended, routine enjoyment.
  • When adding fruit, the sugar is absorbed more slowly because there is much more fiber.
  • Blenders are easy to clean. A quick rinse, add a little soap, and rinse again.
  • Smoothies taste great and are very family friendly.
  • You can make healthy soups, sauces, nut milks, nut butters, salsas, salad dressings, and dips.
  • Adding superfoods like hemp protein, chia, maca, camucamu, and spirulina to your smoothies creates dense nutritional value.

I recommend purchasing a blender for your first piece of mixing equipment.  Blenders are a great start so easy and convenient. If you can purchase a juicer next, go for it. Juicers add another dimension, because fresh juices are...

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Broccoli and Arugula Soup

Love is in the air... and what is more romantic than the scintillating aroma of simmering soup? Sharing a heavenly dish with someone you love is the perfect way to celebrate this Valentine's Day. Our broccoli and arugula soup sizzles with nutrients and flavor truly spreading love from the inside out. And for the record, broccoli is more than just some pretty florets. It's one of the healthiest veggies you can eat (your mom knew what she was talking about). Celebrated as a cancer fighter, it is also loaded with fiber, calcium, vitamins A and C, and folic acid.  Just saying'!



  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, thinly sliced
  • ½ yellow onion, roughly diced
  • 1 head of broccoli, cut into small florets (about 2/3 pound)
  • 2 ½ cups water
  • ¼ teaspoon each, coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • ¾ cup arugula or watercress
  • ½ lemon

Heat olive oil in a nonstick saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic and onion and...

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