Friday, March 11, 2016

Lemon Poppyseed Overnight Oats

According to my Instagram, you all wanted the recipe for the Lemon Poppyseed Overnight Oats I made the other day!

Well, I had them again this morning and made the recipe even better be adding in a secret ingredient!...Almond!!

Since it is nearing spring-time, I am starting to eat more fresh fruits and vegetables (instead of frozen/cooked), dress in brighter clothes, and just feel more alive all together! Does this happen to you too? 

The inspiration for this recipe came from that feeling of being alive.  Lemons have that pungent flavor and taste like spring to me, so I tend to start squeezing lemon juice on everything this time of year! Honestly, I put the ingredients together, hoping for something at least half way edible, and it turned out amazing!!

Lemons are so good for our bodies.  They are full of phytonutrients (like vitamin C) that are good for boosting the immune system, and antioxidants that help to neutralize free radicals and reduce inflammation.

Like many recipes, if you do not like a certain ingredient or would like more (or less) sweetener, feel free to change it up and make it your own. 

Also, if you haven't heard...I am asking for 10 people to be part of my up-and-coming online nutrition community!  It is 100% FREE and will be during the month of June.  This is the beta-version, which is why I am keeping the group small.  It is only required that you participate in two 1 hour Q&A sessions during the month.  We will be going over all-things nutrition and health! Click here to submit an entry if you'd like to be part of this community!!

Monday, March 7, 2016

Turtles, Tea, and History!

Was it just me, or did this weekend fly by?!  Note:  This post is pretty long, so grab a cup of tea and a's ok, I'll wait...

Ok, are you ready for the recap of this fun-filled weekend?!  Here we go!

Here in Chigagoland, we are finally getting a taste of spring and had some beautiful weather (in the 50's!!) especially on Sunday.

Once in a great while, Andrew and I will get a weekend "off" (by this, I mean nothing pressing going on, but we of course still make plans to do something

Saturday was pretty booked because I had a half-day seminar (8am-2pm) with the North Suburban Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.  Since I am on the board, I had to get there a bit early to help set up but it was so worth it because the speakers were wonderful and I was very inspired by them all!  It is always a breath of fresh air to be around like-minded people!!

Here's the line up:
  • Our first speaker, Rachel Bassler, RDN, LDN, CSSD discussed the 2015 Dietary Guidelines, specifically the update on the guidelines to dietary cholesterol (another post on that later, this one is already long enough)...
  • She was followed by Dr. Kristina Martinez, PhD, RD who discussed the associations between diet, gut bacteria, and metabolic disease.  Very interesting stuff; I love all this new research on gut-health! (another post later on this topic as well; for now, here's a little sneak peak)
  • At 10am, Krista Varady, PhD discussed he research on alternate day fasting.  She is also the author of The Every Other Day Diet.
  • by 11, we had a break and got to sample some goodies (which my stomach  Iwas very thankful for!!)
  • From 11:20-2pm we had a panel of 6 different dietitians from all scopes of practice (bariatrics, eating disorders, home health, an author, pediatrics, and private practice)
The panel was probably me favorite part just because it is so fun to hear about another dietitian's journey and the two RD's that talked about how they got started in private practice and building their own brand of course inspired me the most (as I am doing the same!)  So, thanks Lara and Dawn for great inspiration!

The rest of Saturday was meal prep, and family time with the in-laws!

Sunday was much more chill. Several months ago, I saw a flyer for a Tea and Tour at The Grove in Glenview and immediately booked it.  The cost was by donation and we got tea and a tour of the Kennicott house (which I visited in 4th grade for a field trip!)

Our tour was in the home of Dr. Robert Kennicott (a man of many hats).  He was first and foremost a medical doctor in the mid-1800s, a husband, and a father of 7 children. 

We had some tea and little treats.
The strawberries were delicious!
This is his office.  On the left are medicines followed by his desk, and a dental drill (the tall thin thing...) The table in the foreground is actually the table he'd use to assess patients! Right in his own home!!
A wood-burning stove to feed the family
Can you spot something unique about this picture?  Leave a comment to let me know what you think it is!!
1800's dishwasher
After the tour, we walked around a bit and got to see a small wildlife sanctuary.  The above picture is actually a Black Rat Snake!

So many cute turtles!!

And finally, we got to see the archives (not open all the time).  This is where they keep actual pieces of things from the Kennicott family that they have found on the grounds of the home.  Pieces of history!
I hope you had a wonderful weekend as well!  Don't forget to leave a comment letting me know what you think is unique about the picture above!!

Thursday, March 3, 2016

It's National Nutrition Month!! (plus a recipe)

March first began the month-long celebration of National Nutrition Month, which is the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics' nutrition education and information campaign. The theme this year is Savor the Flavor of Eating Right.  This is right in line with the may I help my clients because it is a focus on encouraging everyone "to take time to enjoy food traditions and appreciate the pleasures, great flavors and social experiences food can add to our lives. How, when, why and where we eat are just as important as what we eat. Develop a mindful eating pattern that includes nutritious and flavorful foods — that's the best way to savor the flavor of eating right!" (this quote is from an Academy email I got).

So, to help YOU get some useful and updated nutrition information, I will be doing my best to answer as many of your nutrition questions as I can.  Leave your question in the comments, or email me personally, and I will answer it right here on the blog!

Now, it is March and that means everyone's Irish side will soon be emerging as St. Patrick's Day rolls around.  It's funny, all of a sudden, everyone in Chicago becomes Irish in March...
So, in the spirit of my Irish heritage (yes, I do have some Irish blood in me), I have a wonderful recipe for you! Vegan Shepherd's Pie!

A little back story to this recipe:  My mom has been making vegan shepherd's pie since I became vegan and I always ask her to bring it to family gatherings and such.  She even made it for last year's Murderer Mystery Dinner Party!!  It is so good, I never knew how simple it was until I asked for the recipe!  My mom laughed and then proceeded to tell me her recipe below.
Here's what you'll need:
  • lots of potatoes, chopped and boiled until soft
  • 1 big bag of frozen mixed veggies
  • 3 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 1/3 cup vegetable broth or water
  1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Mash your potatoes with some almond milk and add salt/pepper to taste
  3. Place your veggies in the bottom of a casserole dish, ad tomato paste and broth. Stir to combine
  4. Top the veggie mixture with mashed potatoes and pop into the oven!
That's it!  In about 15 minutes, you will have a warm and golden dish of steaming hot shepherd's pie!!

What is your favorite casserole-type dish?  Let me know in the comments and don't forget to subscribe so you can get updates right in your inbox!