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15 Common Craving Foods “Upgraded”

December 6th, 2018 | no comments

Photo by Fatima Akram on Unsplash

 

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I’m the first one to say that you should never attempt to cure your chocolate craving by eating a cluster of grapes, because we both know what will happen: you’ll end up eating a bushel of grapes…and yes, eventually the chocolate too. This is especially true if you have a craving for something specific.

But what happens if you crave chocolate every day? Should you always eat chocolate?

Well…yes!

In my last post, I encouraged you to tap into and embrace your humanness by implementing an every-day-is-a-cheat-day policy. This means deliberately scheduling what I call perfectly imperfect foods (PIFs) into your day by building them into the catalog of foods you regularly eat.

Don’t be afraid to give your craving foods a little upgrade

Listen, as long as I don’t secretly feel cheated, I’m all for upgrading my craving-buster foods. Now don’t get me wrong, I don’t mean that I turn it into a health food per se, I just aim for higher quality ingredients.

Let me also say that certain foods, no matter how hard you try, can never be upgraded without turning them into something all together different, with no semblance to the original version.

Take donuts for example. I’ve yet to taste a nutritionally-upgraded donut that even came close to the real thing. So for me, if I’m going to eat a donut, I just eat a damn donut.

But for other foods, I’ve found the upgrade to be pleasantly (and equally) delicious, and over time I tend to prefer it to the original. It just makes me feel better on a physical and emotional level.

To help you bust through your cravings and come out clean on the other side, here is a list of:

 15 Common Craving Foods & Their Upgrades 

1. Bacon Applewood Organics Uncured No Sugar Bacon
2. Beef Grass-fed organic beef
3. Chocolate Chocolate labeled 72% cacao or higher. If it’s too bitter for your buds, start with a lower percentage and work your way up.
4. Chocolate-type dessert Chocolate Earthfood “Pudding” Cups
5. Cookies Enjoy Life Cookies
Bulletproof Bars
Evo Hemp Bars
Almond Butter Buckeye Bites
Earthfood Energy Bars
Peanut Butter Caramel Coconut Bars
6. Deli sandwich Applegate Naturals Deli Meat on sprouted Ezekiel or Alvarado Street bread
7. French fries with ketchup Bake your own using this simple recipe. Dip in Primal Kitchen Ketchup (no added sugar!)
8.  Grilled cheese Grilled cheese made with:

  • A more natural cheese (i.e. not American cheese): cheddar, Fontina, Gouda, Gruyere, Havarti, Monterey Jack, mozzarella, Muenster, Swiss
  • Kerrygold butter
  • Sprouted bread (Ezekiel or Alvarado Street)
9. Hot chocolate Hot cocoa made with:

  • Raw cacao powder, raw honey and full-fat coconut milk (check out this recipe)

OR

10. Mac-n-cheese Upgraded Mac-n-Cheese
11. Pasta Gluten-free, higher fiber pasta: Explore Cuisine bean pasta; Banza chickpea pasta; Ancient Harvest quinoa pasta
12. Pizza Sprouted English Muffin Pizza

13. Potato or tortilla chips Jackson’s Honest coconut oil potato chips or tortilla chips (they do NOT taste like coconut); The Real Coconut tortilla chips; Boulder Canyon avocado oil potato chips 
14. Pumpkin pie No-Bake Pumpkin Pie Balls (can do this with other pie flavors too!)
15.  Soda Club soda with a splash of 100% juice of choice

 

Looking to dig a little deeper into your cravings? Read my post on 4-Steps to Honor Your Cravings in a Healthier Way.

By the way, there is still time to take the 7-Day Perfectly Imperfect Holiday Challenge for a chance to win one of five signed copies of my new book Missing Peace: Eleven Secrets to Restore Inner Harmony with Your Food, Body & Health. 

 

Mel’s weekly food pick:
Organic, Unrefined Virgin Coconut Oil

Nutiva Virgin Unrefined Coconut Oil

If you were to ask my thoughts on coconut oil twenty years ago, I would’ve told you to stay away from it! After all, it’s solid at room temperature and full of saturated fat, which is supposed to be really bad for your heart…right?

Well, fast-forward to present day, and we now know that coconut oil is actually beneficial for our overall health and far superior to refined vegetables oils such as canola, corn and soybean.

Coconut oil contains medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs), which are processed by the liver and converted to energy instead of being stored as body fat. They also increase HDL (i.e. good) cholesterol and lower high triglycerides levels—both beneficial for heart health. 

High-quality organic, unrefined virgin coconut oil is made by scooping the coconut meat out of the shell and cold pressing to get the oil. This type of coconut oil has a pleasant coconut scent and flavor and is best for baking, medium-heat cooking (up to 350 degrees), smoothies, and no-bake desserts like this week’s recipe pick: Chocolate Earthfood “Pudding” Cups.  

If you don’t prefer the tropical flavor of virgin coconut oil, try a high-quality refined coconut oil instead. Made from dried coconut meat and gently steam-refined with no chemicals, additives or hexane, high-quality refined coconut oil has a neutral scent and flavor. It can be used in higher-heat cooking methods (up to 400 degrees) like sautéing, stir-frying, and baking. 

Coconut oil does not need to be refrigerated. Store it at room temperature out of direct sunlight. 

 

Mel’s weekly recipe pick:
Chocolate Earthfood “Pudding” Cups

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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A Cheat Day: Should You Schedule One?

November 29th, 2018 | no comments

Photo by Ashley Green on Unsplash

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EXCITING NEWS! In celebration of my new book, tomorrow (11/30) I will be announcing a fun holiday challenge to help you take back control of your food AND have a chance to win one of five signed copies of Missing PeaceOne lucky winner will also have the opportunity to come grocery shopping with me (northeast Ohio only) and learn how to stock a kitchen with all of the healthy essentials. Complete grocery list and meal ideas will be included (A $400 value). Stay tuned… 🙂

 

Maybe you’ve heard of it…the cheat day. The single day of the week when you allow yourself to eat anything you want, especially those foods you’ve outlawed the other six days.

Should you do it?

Is it an effective way to squash your food cravings? Well duh! Of course it’s effective; but is it smart?

Here’s how I see it: desiring foods like French fries, potato chips, and chocolate chip cookies, is part of being human. So theoretically, when you implement the cheat day policy, you are really expecting yourself to inhabit an alien-form with freakish willpower (i.e. non-human) for six days and then quickly drop into human-form on the cheat day.

The problem is—yes, you guessed it—you are human 24-7, and it’s not so easy to jump back into your martian body the next day. In fact, your human body will most likely retaliate with blood sugar dips, brain fog, digestive upset, and sluggish energy…and I guarantee you will throw in the towel and decide being a human is much more fun than an alien.

Human beings are imperfect.

I refer to our species as perfectly imperfect…and I mean it! In fact, in my new book, Missing Peace #7 is rightfully titled: Imperfection Is Perfection.

It’s such a lovely thing, isn’t it? To realize that we should be embracing our imperfections on a daily (yes daily) basis, is like receiving a permission slip to be human.

Embracing your humanness means you should deliberately schedule imperfection into your day; build it into the catalog of foods you regularly eat. This simple, intentional act allows you to live peacefully amongst imperfect foods instead of fighting them off with guns a blazing!

So essentially what I am asking you to do, is make every day a cheat day. 

As I mentioned in last week’s post, I make room for imperfect foods every day, usually in the form of cheese and chips. Martinis are built in less often (maybe once or twice a week) and donuts maybe once or twice a year. But remember, it took me quite awhile to train my taste buds to prefer less sugar and processed foods. It certainly didn’t happen overnight. And the only reason it happened at all, is because I didn’t forbid myself of ANYTHING; I simply chose to eat smarter.

Here’s how to make this “every day-is-a-cheat-day” policy work for you:

Imagine your daily food intake as a pie (not that kind of pie…think pie chart 🙂 ). A portion of this pie should be reserved for imperfection, a representation of our perfectly imperfect human nature (the burgundy pie slice in the image below). So really, we should consider redefining what it means to be a perfect eater. Don’t you agree?

How to make every day a cheat day

 

Are you with me so far?

I don’t count calories, measure sugar grams, track carbs or any other unnatural, tedious nonsense like that. I eat well and invite perfectly imperfect foods into my day. Most weeks it averages to be about 80-20 (20% perfectly imperfect), but some weeks it’s 90-10 and others 60-40 (i.e. holiday time!)

To give you an idea, here’s what my 60-40 Thanksgiving day looked like. Keep in mind, the 40% perfectly imperfect foods (PIF) came in at dinner:

Breakfast: two-egg veggie omelet (onions, cauliflower, tomatoes, peppers, broccoli, mushrooms) cooked in coconut oil with a side of fresh berries

Lunch: Peace of Health shake made with avocado, lacinato kale, baby carrots, hemp protein powder, cinnamon, frozen berries, fresh ginger root

Thanksgiving dinner (includes appetizers): A few cubes of cheese (PIF); two BIG glasses of wine (PIF); raw veggies and olives; turkey; sweet potatoes; cranberry sauce made with real sugar (PIF); roasted Brussels sprouts; green beans; two No-Bake Pumpkin Pie Balls (PIF)

In order for this brilliant new paradigm to work for you (and not backfire), keep these three rules in mind:

  • Rule #1: Do NOT measure your perfectly imperfect food.

Yes, I know this goes against everything the diet books taught you. Listen, I don’t measure cheese, chips or anything else for that matter because I trust myself to do what’s best for ME.

Furthermore, measuring is just too damn diet-like. I did that for three years while journeying through binge eating disorder and every time I measured, I would think about wanting more than what I dished out. Inevitably I’d always wind up back at the pantry to retrieve the bag of chips. Not only is it human nature to want what you can’t have, but also to want more than what the diet-imposed limit allows you to have.

INSTEAD: Dish a reasonable portion of your perfectly imperfect food into a small bowl or cup. Whatever you do, do NOT eat it straight out of the bag/box/container. We have a tendency to eat until we get to the bottom of the container, so if the “container” is an entire bag of chips or carton of ice cream…guess what?!

PS: Here’s what I do with chips, otherwise I will eat the entire bag!      

  • Rule #2: If it makes sense (and you don’t secretly feel cheated), upgrade your perfectly imperfect food.

Don’t worry, I’m not asking you to turn it into a health food. Just treat it to a little nutritional upgrade. For example: choose non-GMO potato chips cooked in coconut oil instead of vegetable oil; upgrade your favorite dessert recipe by using lower glycemic sweeteners (I’m not talking artificial sweeteners here)—that’s what I did on Thanksgiving! See this week’s recipe pick for No-Bake Pumpkin Pie Balls. 

Over time, you may very well end up preferring the upgraded version to the original. 

  • Rule #3: Really taste and enjoy your perfectly imperfect food…without an ounce of guilt.

Guilt is a useless emotion. If you plan on laying a big fat guilt trip on yourself with every bite of perfectly imperfect food, you’re totally missing the point. Save yourself the trip…don’t even bother eating it. 

So go ahead and give yourself permission to make every day a cheat day. A word of warning: don’t be surprised when you run across a day or two where you eat no PIFs. Even though you made plenty of room for them…some days you simply won’t want any.

Mel’s weekly food pick:
Organic, Unrefined Coconut Sugar 

Made from the coconut blossoms of the coconut tree, coconut sugar is a natural sweetener with a flavor similar to brown sugar.

I wouldn’t go calling it a “health” food, but just like raw honey and pure maple syrup, coconut sugar is a more suitable alternative to white table sugar.

For starters, it offers trace elements such as iron, zinc, magnesium, and antioxidants, in greater quantities than that of regular sugar. Second, unlike the white stuff, coconut sugar contains inulin, a fiber that is good for growing beneficial gut bacteria. Inulin also slows the absorption of glucose, therefore making it a more reasonable solution for diabetics and those making a conscious effort to manage their blood sugar. 

Let me be clear on something. If you are diligently working to eliminate or reduce added sugar in your diet, don’t go adding coconut sugar because you think it’s good for you. It’s not a health food, but rather an upgrade from white sugar.

In other words, use coconut sugar like you would white sugar…sparingly. Check out this week’s recipe pick below for No-Bake Pumpkin Pie Balls. They are rolled in a dusting of coconut sugar at the very end, making for a sweet (but not too sweet) treat.

PS: Coconut sugar is a 1:1 replacement for white sugar.

Mel’s weekly recipe pick:
No-Bake Pumpkin Pie Balls

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DON’T FORGET! Tomorrow (11/30) I will be announcing a fun holiday challenge to help you take back control of your food AND have a chance to win a copy of my new book Missing Peace! Stay tuned… 

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How to fashion an eating style that works for YOU

November 21st, 2018 | no comments

Photo by Yleidis Maldonado on Unsplash

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In the last post, I offered my brutal thoughts on weight loss and the sheer impossibility of your body to physically release weight when your mind is tangled in a dysfunctional relationship with food.

Today’s post is meant for those of you who are doing “the work” and getting better each day at listening to and trusting your body. You are now in a place to learn how to go about fashioning an eating style that is as unique as you.

If you’re not quite there yet, I strongly suggest you go back to the beginning of this series (start HERE…then go HERE) and learn what it really takes to set your mind free. Otherwise you’ll just keep on chasing your tail like a silly puppy.

 

Now let’s talk about food.

 

It matters what you eat. Of course it does! I went to college for seven years (yes, I took the scenic route) and studied the art of eating because I knew how much it mattered.

Eating is an art, isn’t it? It’s a different experience for everyone. What turns me on may not excite you (i.e. roasted Brussels sprouts with sea salt and pepper) and furthermore, may not agree with your particular body.

For example: I could eat raw leafy greens till the cows come home and my digestive system will get to work breaking down and absorbing all of the vitamins and minerals with ease. On the other hand, I know of one individual in particular, whose fanny would be glued to the toilet all evening if they consumed even the smallest salad at dinner.

 

Yes, we are all unique and there is no universal meal plan in the sky that is right for everyone.

 

Of course there are a few obvious rules that apply to almost everyone classifying with the human race:

  1. Eat more Earthfoods (i.e. veggies, fruits, herbs, spices, etc.)
  2. Eat less processed food and sugar
  3. Drink plenty of water

I find when most people at least start here and improve upon these three staples, their energy level, health, mood, and digestive system all improve exponentially.

But what if you follow these rules and your health and weight still aren’t where you want them to be? In this case, you need to practice a little refinement. And here’s where it gets fun!

I can hear you now: Fun?! Are you crazy Melanie? Imposing a bunch of rules about what I can and can’t eat isn’t my idea of fun.

 

Stay with me here for a minute my little chickadee.

 

You’ve got the basics down and are following them like a good student: more veggies; less sugar/processed food; plenty of H2O. Check, check, and check. As you move towards tweaking your food choices and ingredients within this basic framework (we’ll get to this in a minute), you must remember one critical rule:

 

No food is forbidden.

 

Yes, you heard me talk about this before and that’s because I am so adamant about it. I even dedicated an entire Missing Peace to it in my new book.

Listen, the number one reason food has so much control over so many people is that we as a society enter into our eating experience with a subconscious radio station playing quietly in the background of our mind. And it goes a little something like this:

 

  • You really shouldn’t be eating this!
  • Do you know how many calories are in that slice of pizza? Not to mention how many miles you’re going to have to walk to burn it off?
  • What are you doing? Are you crazy? Your doctor told you to stay away from that food.
  • Oh screw it! You’re worth it. Go ahead and be bad for once. 

 

Buried in each and every one of these messages is the inherent belief that food is powerful. And with that power comes the ability to hijack your mind.

But here’s the thing…food didn’t start out as powerful. YOU are the one who gave it power…all of your power!

Take a journey back to the earliest birthday you can remember. For me, that would be my fifth birthday. Now I don’t know about you, but I can tell you this with absolute certainty: I didn’t give a rat’s fat patootie how many calories or sugar grams were in that cake! I didn’t even know what a calorie was. All I knew was that chocolate cake was delicious and I wanted a piece. And after eating most of the frosting and leaving 75% of the cake, I moved on to opening presents. Cake? What cake?

My point is, we ALL controlled the cake when we were young. We had the power, evidenced by most of the cake sitting leftover on the plate. Food only crept into authority as we got older. And we are 100% responsible for this transfer of power.

So let’s take back our power right here and now by adopting a no-food-is-forbidden mindset. But in order for this to work—and not backfire—you must really believe it deep in your soul.

Now that all foods are allowed, you can get to work on fashioning an eating style that works for you with total freedom. Because now that you can have anything you want, you hold all of the power and can choose freely.

 

And that my lovely, is what I call fun! 

 

Mel’s personal eating style guide:

Over the years I’ve adopted an eating style that works very well for me. When I’m wearing this particular style I feel good: lots of energy, not deprived, great mood (most of the time), impeccable digestion, clear brain, and oh yeah…as a side effect, my clothes just happened to fit nicely too. Not too tight or loose. 

But it’s not all broccoli and Brussels sprouts! Fun and imperfections are deliberately built into this style too. Take a look at the accessories of my personal eating style guide:

  1. Lots of veggies every day: at least a serving or two of greens; a plethora of non-starchy vegetables; starchy veggies a couple times a week (mostly sweet potatoes and squash).
  2. A serving or two of fruit every day: mostly berries and apples, because I love them.
  3. Peace of Health shake almost every day.
  4. Minimal grains: If I eat them I stick to gluten-free grains like quinoa and gluten-free oats.
  5. Sea salt, pepper, herbs and spices to season my food.
  6. A glass of wine or vodka martini (with fresh lime juice) once or twice a week.
  7. Moderate in seafood and animal protein: an egg almost every day; fish about three to four times a week; hormone/antibiotic-free meats a few times each week.
  8. Rich in healthy fat like coconut oil, grass-fed butter, olive oil, avocado oil, nuts, seeds, and avocados. 
  9. A handful or two (and sometimes three or four) of corn tortilla chips, coconut oil potato chips, or my new favorite coconut flour tortilla chips every day.
  10. Light in full-fat dairy: a little full-fat cheese most days of the week; an ounce or so of full-fat kefir added to my shake; very occasional full-fat yogurt. If I use butter, I use REAL butter…not that fake chemical-laden crap. Did I mention I choose FULL-FAT dairy? 🙂
  11. About 70-80 ounces of water each day: includes 24 ounces of lemon water when I first wake up, about 20 ounces of black coffee (I would marry it if I could!); 24 ounces of plain hot green tea; around 12 ounces of plain water. And yes…I pee like a racehorse about 17-dozen times in a 24-hour period 🙂 ! 
  12. An ounce or so of 70% or higher dark chocolate every day.
  13. An occasional hot-fudge sundae or Jack Frost donut (I’m very picky about my donuts!), or REAL dessert (i.e. not fruit!) when dining out.

Notice, none of the above mentioned anything about not eating a particular food or class of foods. And that is for the obvious reasons outlined earlier in the post. Even if you’re making the best food choices, you still won’t be in control of food if you’re thinking about all of the things you can’t have. That’s food prison.

Permission-based eating is all about choice.

I stay away from gluten for the most part. But it’s not because I can’t have it…I just choose not to. Do you see the difference?

How to fashion your own eating style guide:

To fashion your own eating style guide, start with five accessories. Here are some guidelines to help you:

  • Don’t list foods or classes of foods that you will NOT eat, rather only include those foods you will.
  • Be sure to mix in a little fun (see #6, #9, and #13 above).
  • Challenge yourself to up your game. For example, if you don’t eat veggies because you “hate” them, it’s because you aren’t eating them on a daily basis. Roast up some Brussels sprouts and sweet potatoes or eat a leafy green salad every day and make it fun by adding fresh fruit, toasted nuts, and a sprinkle of cheese. The only way you will grow is by stretching yourself! 
  • Commit to drinking a certain amount of water (and make one serving lemon water!).

Once you’ve got your five, write them down and commit to practicing them for one full week. Then add a couple more “accessories” to the list and practice for another week. Keep doing this as long as you are inspired and having fun! If it feels like a diet…STOP! 

If you need help, send me an email and I would be happy to guide you along in setting up the first five accessories of your personal eating style guide!

I want to take a moment to express my gratitude for you my friend. Thank you for inviting me into your life and letting me share my passion. All of this is for YOU! 

Thank you for being YOU… xoxo

Mel’s weekly food pick:
Chia Seeds

Do you remember those silly commercials years ago featuring the chia pet? You know, those terracotta figurines shaped like animals that grew sprouts similar to alfalfa? Fast forward to today and it turns out those seeds—called none other than chia seeds—are actually little nutrition powerhouses!

They are a great source of fiber, antioxidants, and omega-3 fatty acids (an even better source than flaxseeds). They have a mild, nutty flavor and can be added to cranberry sauce, smoothies, hot cereal, yogurt, nut butter, and even incorporated into cookies, energy bars, muffins, soups, chili, and vegetable, rice, or quinoa-based dishes.

How will eating chia seeds benefit you? Omega-3 fatty acids are important for a healthy brain and heart, and fiber is essential for a healthy digestive track and blood sugar control. Add to that the high antioxidant level of chia seeds, which can help protect you from certain cancers!

Oh…one more thing– when added to liquid, chia seeds form a fibrous gel that can help you feel full longer.

Chia seeds are the secret ingredient in this week’s recipe: Earthy Turkey Chia Chili! 

Mel’s weekly recipe pick:
Earthy Turkey Chia Chili (crockpot) 

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The hard truth about weight loss

November 15th, 2018 | no comments

Photo by Alex Iby on Unsplash

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I laid it on pretty thick in last week’s post, didn’t I? I told you that in order for your body to return to the weight that it’s most comfortable, the last thing you need is another diet. What you need to do is listen to and trust in your brilliant body like your life depends on it.

Then I just left you hanging, didn’t I?

That was on purpose. 

I wanted you to spend a little time letting that message marinade in your subconscious.

Breaking free from the magnetizing force that triggers you to sabotage your efforts (i.e. grab the bag of chips and go to town until you’re covered in crumbs, licking your fingers, and wondering what just happened) really does begin with relearning the lessons that came so naturally to us as children:

  1. Lesson one: Stop dieting and trying to lose weight! We didn’t do this as kids.
  2. Lesson two: Stop labeling food as good versus bad. We didn’t do this as children, unless we learned it from our parents.
  3. Lesson three: Stop forbidding yourself from eating certain foods. We didn’t do this either…but our parents were masters at it, weren’t they?

As I tell my audiences time and again: I can’t even begin to talk to you about food until I’m sure you understand the basics of what it really takes to help your body settle into the weight it is most comfortable.

 

And it has nothing to do with food per se, but rather your relationship with food and your level of trust in your body. 

 

This is something that took me years to learn, which is why I wrote a book about how to restore this inner harmony.

If you are ready to begin “the work” at this fundamental level, you will be successful at releasing the weight that isn’t serving you. I promise. 

If, on the other hand, you want to skip over all of this and jump right into a weight loss meal plan…I’m not your girl and you should probably stop reading any further.

You know, it took me years to understand my place in this world as it relates to weight loss:

I don’t help people lose weight.

I help them prepare their mind and heal their relationship with food and the deeper part of themselves so that their body can release the weight, if necessary.

The truth is, focusing on food won’t get you very far. More often than not, it is the very substance that well-meaning dieters end up manipulating and abusing because they failed to do the real “work”. For example, eating artificially sweetened foods to “save” calories; starving yourself all day in an effort to “save” calories so you can go out with your friends and drink the night away, etc. Sound familiar?

 

The hard truth: your body will not release weight while it’s tangled in a dysfunctional relationship with food. 

 

Quite the contrary.

It will hold on to that weight for dear life…sort of like a protective shield.

If you are doing the real work (which really isn’t work at all) and are getting better each day at listening to and trusting your body while practicing what I call “permission-based” eating (i.e. no food is forbidden), well then by golly…you are ready to hear about food. 

Next week, I will share the eating style that works extremely well for me. You may find it works for you…or not. That’s the beauty of being an individual armed with the freedom of choice; you get to fashion an eating style that works best for you, then test it, tweak it, and hit repeat! 

Before I let you go, let’s say you are plugging along, eating well, not dieting, not labeling foods as good/bad, and you’ve lifted the red X off of all foods. How do you really know if you are on the right path and have broken free from that self-sabotaging force? 

  1. You are willingly making healthier choices and do not secretly feel like a caged animal who really wants the cheeseburger and fries. Your cage door is open and you feel free as a bird around food…ALL food.
  2. You eat something that you previously labeled as “bad” and you feel at ease, unrestricted, and absent of guilt. 
  3. Food only occupies a small space in your brain. You aren’t obsessing over it or thinking about it night and day. 

There is no better feeling in the world than to be free from the bonds of food.

You CAN do this.

Just trust a little more than you did yesterday.

 

Mel’s weekly food pick:
Maca Root Powder

Maca, also known as Peruvian ginseng, is the root of a vegetable native to Peru. It falls under the category of “adaptogens”, which means it has the power to fight daily stress, thereby helping your body achieve a state of balance and harmony. If coffee tends to give you the jitters, you’ll probably respond favorably to maca. Unlike stimulants, it supports a natural level of energy and vitality. 

With it’s sweet, nutty flavor, maca root powder can be easily mixed in yogurt, nut butters, and shakes and added to baked goods, pancake mix, and energy bites.

Check out this week’s recipe for No-Bake Cranberry Coconut Mood-Boosting Bites or check out these other previously featured recipes using maca powder:

 

Mel’s weekly recipe pick:
No-Bake Cranberry Coconut Mood-Boosting Bites

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Let’s talk about weight loss

November 8th, 2018 | no comments

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If you are serious about losing weight, I need you to really tune into what I am about to say…

Stop trying to lose weight.

Wait…what?

The one thing that really plucks at my heartstrings is when I hear someone—be it friend, family, or complete stranger—announce they just started a new weight loss program. Maybe they are counting calories with their brand new calorie-tracking app, or perhaps choosing to follow a “keto” or “paleo” plan. Whatever the method, it gets to me every time.

Why do I get so emotional? Because I know where this diet will eventually lead them.

Sure they’ll plug along just fine for a week or so, meticulously measuring their portions with their perfectly calibrated food scale, scanning every label for the presence of carbs, and entering every morsel of ingested food into their phone. But what they don’t see is that “thing” bubbling beneath the surface of their skin.

They don’t see it, but I do.

I’m referring to that quiet, subtle brewing of discontent.

A yearning for normalcy.

A desire to turn back the clock and transport themselves to simpler times—when they could trust their body to tell them what it needed, how much it needed, and when to put the fork down. No, it wasn’t a reaching of their assigned calorie limit that guided them to stop eating, it was their brilliantly tuned-in body.

But because they proceed with the diet and fail to listen to this quiet unsettled calling, they end up sabotaging their efforts. You see, nothing about what they are doing is natural, so they subconsciously rebel. It’s like an invisible force pulling them to the pantry for chocolate chip cookies or driving their car to the nearest drive-thru and before they know it, are elbow-deep in a greasy bag containing French fries and God knows what else.

No human being is a match for this force. And no, the answer won’t be found in another diet…that will only add fuel to the force.

So how do you break free from it?

Take yourself back to your earliest recollection as a child and learn from your younger self. Think about it, as a child:

  • You did NOT diet or try to lose weight. Without question, you trusted your body to tell you when to put the fork down. You listened and naturally settled into the weight your body was comfortable with.
    • Think you can’t do this as an adult? Think again. In fact, it’s the only way out of your self-constructed, weight-cycling prison. Newsflash: if you’ve been on the same weight loss plan more than once, and you keep returning to it every time you put on a few pounds, that plan is NOT working! Oh no it’s not.

 

  • You did NOT label food as good or bad (and if you did…I’m sorry you had to go through that as a child). Food was food. If you ate a few pieces of Halloween candy, you didn’t follow it up with feelings of guilt and 30-minutes on the treadmill. You ate your vegetables, and although they didn’t even come close to comparing to that Halloween candy, you knew darn well vegetables were good for you and eating them meant you would grow up strong like Popeye.
    • Yes, certain foods will destroy your health if you overdo them on a regular basis. And of course there are foods that will totally rock your health when eaten consistently. But for heaven’s sake, please stop with the labels! The only purpose they serve is to make you feel like a loser when you eat a so-called “bad” food. Just stop it! 

 

  • You did NOT forbid yourself from eating certain foods because they had too many calories, carbs, fat grams, etc. Maybe your parents forbid you from eating certain things, like chocolate…and you remember how that turned out right? Once you got your hands on some, you inhaled it like a Hoover!
    • We humans thrive on the ability to choose. Take that right away and I’ll bet you wind up eating the forbidden food in a quantity five times larger than if you didn’t forbid it in the first place. This is so important. The beauty is, nine times out of ten you’ll find that once you’re “allowed” to have it, you really don’t even want it. It’s all about the power of choice. 

Can you wrap your beautiful head around this? Do you get it? Are you willing to look at food and your body through a totally new pair of eyes? Are you finally willing to trust your body in all of its brilliance like you did so effortlessly as a child? 

But wait a minute Melanie, surely what I eat matters. I know I can’t survive on jelly doughnuts and expect to enjoy good health.

Listen, the basics of healthy eating aren’t rocket science: eat oodles of plants, go easy on the sweets, drink lots of water, etc. You know this stuff. Even if you only get it 50% right and do so consistently, you are doing a good job. But consistency is a foreign concept to the individual who hasn’t yet embraced and embodied the above bullet points. It starts there. 

To help your body return to the weight that it is most comfortable (and stay there), you don’t need another diet. You need to listen to and trust your beautifully brilliant body like your life depends on it. Otherwise be prepared to ride that diet train right to the grave.

 

Mel’s weekly food pick:
Mushrooms

You’ve probably heard at least one health professional suggest you stay away from all white foods. After all, bread, flour, pasta, and sugar—all foods that can spike your blood sugar if you aren’t careful—are white. But what about those Earthfoods that happened to be white? Think garlic, onions, potatoes, cauliflower, and mushrooms?

Mushrooms are incredible. Technically a fungus,  they are one of the most health-promoting foods on earth.

Even though they are white, mushrooms pack as many antioxidants as those colorful fruits and vegetables we are told to eat more of, such as peppers, carrots, berries, and tomatoes. 

Here are just a few of the known benefits of mushrooms:

  • Give your immune system a boost.
  • Improve the health of your gut: mushrooms are a powerful prebiotic, which is like fertilizer to help grow the good bacteria in your body.
  • Weight management: mushrooms may alter your gut bacteria in ways that help promote a healthy weight. 
  • Cancer prevention: Research suggests mushrooms may protect against breast and other hormone-related cancers because they inhibit an enzyme called aromatase, which produces estrogen.

Enjoy mushrooms in sautes, stir fries, casseroles, and soups. Check out this week’s recipe pick for: 30-Minute Immune Boosting Mushroom Soup below. Whatever you do, be sure to eat mushrooms in the cooked form. According to Dr. Joel Fuhrman, several raw culinary mushrooms contain a potentially carcinogenic substance called agaritine, and cooking mushrooms significantly reduces their agaritine content.

Mel’s weekly recipe pick:
30-Minute Immune-Boosting Mushroom Soup

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Don’t be fooled by low-fat

November 1st, 2018 | no comments

Plus:

  • Mel’s weekly product pick: 
    Kalona Supernatural Organic Whole Milk Cottage Cheese 
  • Mel’s weekly recipe pick: 
    Whipped Cheese, Fruit & Nut Breakfast Bowl

Back in the 90’s it was a common belief that dietary fat made you fat. That’s what all of the popular diet books led you to believe, and of course it was supported by the United States Department of Agriculture’s Food Guide Pyramid, which encouraged you to eat six to eleven servings of grains every day, while minimizing fat. Naturally, being a follower of “sound” nutrition advice, I followed the guidance. But I took it to the extreme.

Every piece of food that passed my lips had to have no more than one or two grams of fat inside. I paid no attention to sugar, preservatives or any other substance that were harmful to my health, only fat. Cookies, ice cream, candy, yogurt, breads, crackers, salad dressings, cakes, frostings and peanut butter (yes, peanut butter) were all either fat-free or very low-fat. 

When WOW chips hit the grocery shelves, I just knew there was a God. They were a line of snack chips made with a fat replacement called olestra. It had all of the properties of fat, including mouthfeel and taste, but it went through the body undigested, so you didn’t have to worry about the calories. There was one downside—a potential side effect of eating olestra was loose bowel movements. And do you think that stopped me? Hell no! They were fat-free, they had to be good for you, I reasoned. We won’t even go into how my body “handled” those WOW chips :). 

If you’re stuck in the antiquated mentality that dietary fat is no good, you may actually be doing your body more harm than good.

Of course you want to stay away from trans fats (also known as partially hydrogenated or hydrogenated oil) and refined vegetable oils like canola, soybean and corn, but when it comes to choosing between a naturally full-fat food and low-or-non-fat, 99.999999% of the time, you are better off with full-fat. 

Why? First, not only does dietary fat help you burn fat, it is essential for proper brain and hormone function, nutrient absorption and blood sugar regulation. Ever eat a meal and still feel hungry afterwards? Most likely your meal lacked enough healthy dietary fat.

Nuts and seeds, coconut and extra virgin olive oil, and avocados are healthy fats that will do your body good. And as I mentioned above, aim for full-fat versions of naturally full-fat foods when possible. For example, the difference between full-fat cottage cheese and fat-free cottage cheese is a big one. Take a look at the ingredient list of a well-known brand of fat-free cottage cheese:

Cultured nonfat milk, contains less than 2% of whey, salt, maltodexrin, artificial color, guar gum, citric acid, carrageenan, mono and diglycerides, polysorbate 80, locust bean gum, natural and artificial flavor, potassium sorbate (preservative), vitamin A palmitate, enzyme.

Compare it to the ingredients of Kalona Supernatural Organic Whole Milk Cottage Cheese:

Certified Organic Grade A Nonfat Milk, Organic Grade A Whole Milk, Organic Grade A Cream, Celtic Sea Salt®, Cultures

You don’t need a four-year nutrition degree to realize the better choice. This rule holds true for milk, yogurt, sour cream, cheese, and salad dressings. Plus…full-fat tastes damn good! You can’t argue with that. 

Listen, when they remove the fat, they usually add other “things”, such as sugar, salt, preservatives and emulsifiers. When in doubt, ask yourself: WWGD?

What would grandma do? 

 

Mel’s weekly food pick:
Kalona Supernatural Organic Whole Milk Cottage Cheese

Cottage cheese is traditionally thought of as diet food. In the 1980’s and 90’s, you couldn’t find a weight loss diet without it on the menu. Truth be told, I burned myself out on cottage cheese and then avoided it for quite some time for two reasons:

  1. It reminded me of hellish starvation diet days gone terribly wrong.
  2. Who in their right mind would choose to eat something reminiscent of chunky spackling paste?

This all changed when I (reluctantly) tried whole milk cottage cheese. You see, up until that point, I always thought low-fat and fat-free were the way to go. Bleck! Boy was I wrong.

If you have a rocky history with cottage cheese, give it another shot…but go for the 4% milk fat. It’s a great source of fat and protein and makes a great:

  • Vegetable dip
  • Base for a low sugar fruit parfait
  • Topping for your salad
  • Mayonnaise replacement
  • Addition to overnight oats 
  • Base for a breakfast bowl

Are you turned off by the chunky texture of cottage cheese? Check out my weekly recipe pick below…you just might change your mind. 

Mel’s weekly recipe pick:
Whipped Cheese, Fruit & Nut Breakfast Bowl

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Fall off the health food wagon? Erase your history

October 25th, 2018 | no comments

Plus:

  • Mel’s weekly product pick: 
    Kerrygold Butter 
  • Mel’s weekly recipe pick: 
    Buttery Almond Flour Bread

 

“We all need to be blind sometimes in order to see”
~ Jon Bon Jovi 

 

Although Jon Bon Jovi was referring to the importance of keeping an open mind in order to experience the most life has to offer, I took something different away from his brilliant advice:

Sometimes we need to turn a blind eye to our past attempts at healthy living.

Play along with me…

Think back to the very last time you attempted to make a change in your eating habits. Maybe you were scared into it by an unexpected diagnosis, like diabetes, or perhaps you finally got tired of being sick and tired and decided to do something about it. 

Now I want you to revisit the moment you gave up and returned back to your old, unsupportive food choices. For example, you went out to dinner with a few friends at your favorite Mexican restaurant. You started with a margarita, follow it up with a basket of chips and salsa, then topped it off with a taco salad (sour cream, cheese, beef…the works!) in an oversized fried shell, and ended with another margarita. You woke up the next day feeling so awful (and hungover) about yourself that you threw in the towel. You are back where you started, only worse! Now your self-esteem is really in the crapper and you are convinced you don’t have what it takes to do this…after all, history has proven it so!

Now, here’s what I want you to do:

  • Turn a blind eye.
  • Forget about it.
  • Pretend it never happened.
  • Erase your history.

In fact, I want you to close your eyes and pretend you are one of those toy drawing boards with a built-in eraser. You know, the one with the knob that you slide to the right and your drawing magically disappears. Whatever just happened, use your magic eraser to wipe your slate clean.

Next I want you to view this moment forward as if you have no history with food—no past diets gone wrong or failed attempts to make healthier choices. You are like a newborn baby seeing and experiencing food for the first time.

Yes, you really CAN do this…it’s called the power of your mind. 

Look, I’m not denying that old habits tend to linger around, waiting for a vulnerable moment when they can sneak back and sabotage your efforts.

Habits are real.

Habits are comfortable.

Habits have roots. 

Speaking of roots, did you know that oversaturated soils cause the roots of even the strongest trees to die? Not only that, once the roots die, the remaining live roots will grow too near the soil surface, resulting in instability. What on earth does this have to do with you? Over time you can weaken your unsupportive habits, pluck them out, and dispose of them along with the weekly grass clippings! 🙂

How do you do this? By saturating them with better habits! I mean really drown those stubborn little suckers.

For example, you are well aware that your health would improve by leaps and bounds if you could just get a handle on overeating at dinner. Drown this unsupportive habit with these three strategies:

  1. Plug in a pre-dinner snack of raw veggies and hummus and drink down a 16-ounce glass of lemon water. Many of us go to the dinner table overly hungry and then overeat to compensate. If lunch is at noon and dinner at 6:00, you run the risk of overindulging if you don’t settle your hunger a bit before sitting down to eat.
  2. Eat dinner on a smaller plate.
  3. When you’re done eating, immediately put your shoes on and take a walk around the block for some fresh air and exercise. The dishes can wait.

Hit REPEAT on this dinnertime ritual until you can loosen the decaying habit of overeating and yank it out like a dead root!

 

Mel’s weekly food pick:
Kerrygold Butter

Rich and creamy Kerrygold Pure Irish Butter is made from the milk of cows that have never been treated with antibiotics or hormones, and have been almost entirely grass-fed. This means more omega-3 fatty acids for you!

Because of its lower water content and higher amount of butterfat, Kerrygold boasts a more “buttery” flavor than your average run-of-the-mill butter.

For higher quality you can actually taste, use it for cooking, baking, or as a spread on your favorite bread. Try this week’s recipe for Buttery Almond Flour Bread, which uses Kerrygold butter both in the recipe and on the final product… what’s bread without butter?

 

Mel’s weekly recipe pick:
Buttery Almond Flour Bread

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4-Steps to honor your cravings in a healthier way (this really works!)

October 18th, 2018 | no comments

Plus:

  • Mel’s weekly product pick: 
    Jackson’s Honest Coconut Oil Chips
  • Mel’s weekly recipe pick: 
    Simple Homemade Trail Mix

When someone tells me they never have food cravings, I’m always tempted to check their pulse.

Listen, if you are a living, breathing human being, you most definitely have food cravings. And if you follow a relatively healthy lifestyle, these cravings are probably for healthier foods. Remember…what you feed your body most, it will crave.

With this in mind, every once in awhile you will naturally get a craving for, say, a peanut butter, hot-fudge sundae with salted pecans and whipped cream (OK, maybe that’s just me).

It’s how we are wired. In fact, we were born to be perfectly imperfect. I believe this to my core, which is why I dedicated an entire section to it in my new book Missing Peace. Missing Peace #7 is Imperfection IS Perfection

I discovered a way to successfully honor my cravings in a healthier way and I think you will find it works for you too! Keep in mind, sometimes you have to just say “what the hell!” and go for the peanut butter hot-fudge sundae thing. But it doesn’t have to be as often as you think.

The next time you experience an intense food craving for a food that may not be exactly supportive of good health, rather than hit the panic button, try my four-step process for honoring your cravings in a healthier way:

Step 1: Describe your craving

First, ask yourself: What is my body really craving right now? Describe your cravings using adjectives versus nouns, or specific foods. The reason for this is that 99.9% of the time, a craving can be satisfied by a healthier food offering the exact same properties you are craving, without perpetuating continued eating. It cures the craving and nourishes the body all at the same time.

For example, are you in the mood for something:

  • Creamy?
  • Crunchy?
  • Fizzy?
  • Salty?
  • Spicy?
  • Sweet?

Step 2: Grant permission

Next, even though I’ve just prompted you to describe your cravings with adjectives, you may still have a specific food in mind that you want to eat. In this step, I want you to give yourself full permission to eat the food you are craving, whether it’s a doughnut, potato chips, or an ice cream sundae. This mental clearing puts you in control and releases the sex appeal of your trigger food.

An important point to note here is this— if what you are craving is your kryptonite food and you can’t control yourself around it, it is best not to have it in your house at all.

Step 3: Honor your craving

After giving yourself full permission to eat the food you are craving, it’s time to feed your body what it really desires- fat, crunch, fizz, salt, spice or sweet. It matters not, the package in which these cravings are delivered, so why not aim for a choice that will honor your beautiful body?

The key to success in step three, is to make sure your kitchen is stocked with healthier alternatives. Let’s get real here … we both know if you are on a serious mission for salt and crunch and the only food in your kitchen to deliver those qualities is a bag of chips, no matter how pure your intentions, you will not get in your car and drive to the store for hummus and carrots. You just won’t.

Here are some foods to help you bust through your cravings in a healthier, more peaceful way:

Creamy

  • Mashed avocado on sprouted bread
  • One tablespoon of fresh ground almond butter, peanut butter or cashew butter
  • Guacamole with raw veggies

Crunchy/Salty

  • Handful of raw, salted pumpkin seeds or pistachios
  • Hummus with celery sticks, red pepper strips, or baby carrots
  • Spoonful or two of fermented vegetables (kimchi or sauerkraut)
  • Homemade trail mix (see this week’s recipe for Simple Homemade Trail Mix!)
  • Jackson’s Honest Coconut Oil Chips

Fizzy

  • Club soda or sparkling water with a twist of lemon (Add one ounce of fresh squeezed orange or grapefruit juice for more flavor)
  • Kombucha

Spicy

  • A spoonful or two of kimchi
  • Roasted chickpeas seasoned with cayenne pepper

Sweet

  • A square or two of dark chocolate (72% cacao or higher)
  • 2-3 pitted dates
  • Homemade trail mix (see this week’s recipe for Simple Homemade Trail Mix)

Step 4: Evaluate your craving

Now it’s time to evaluate whether or not your craving was satisfied. The good news is, 99% of time the healthier alternative will do the trick. But what happens when it doesn’t? Then go ahead and give yourself full, guilt-free, non-judgmental permission to drive to the store and settle your craving once and for all! This is the beauty of being a perfectly imperfect human being.

Mel’s weekly food pick:
Jackson’s Honest Coconut Oil Chips

Sweet potatoes, coconut oil, and sea salt. That’s it! Three, pronounceable, recognizable ingredients.

Although these chips aren’t a certified “health food”, they are a snack you can feel good about indulging in. No fake, inflammatory ingredients here!

So many snack foods on the market today are loaded with inflammatory, highly refined oils such as canola, corn, and safflower oils. Jackson’s Honest gives the other guys a run for their money by using a healthier, albeit more costly oil. And those of us who care about the ingredients we put in our bodies, will gladly pay a few extra pennies. Check out all of their varieties HERE!

A note of caution: These chips are amazing, but they are also addicting! Be a smart little cookie and portion a serving into a small bowl or soufflé cup (worth the small investment), that way you won’t be tempted to polish off the entire bag. 

Mel’s weekly recipe pick:
Simple Homemade Trail Mix

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Ignoring THIS elephant will get you into trouble

October 11th, 2018 | no comments

Plus:

  • Mel’s weekly product pick: 
    Boiron’s Sepia (homeopathic remedy for bloating and menstrual pain) 
  • Mel’s weekly recipe pick: 
    African Peanut Stew

You start a new diet (on Monday of course!) and you plug along just fine for a day or two, and then it happens—the very foods you’re not “allowed” to eat become the object of your desire, to the point you even being dreaming about them.

There’s one thing I know for sure about us human beings: tell us we can’t have something and we want it 50 times more! Hey, maybe that’s a way to get your children to eat their veggies! Give it a try, what can it hurt? 🙂

My point is this:

Why do we ignore this larger-than-life elephant in the room? 

Why do we pretend it’s not going to happen when we know damn well that it will, and has?

Why do we insist that a deprivation mindset will lead to desired results? It won’t. It never has and never will! 

My love, you know it’s true. As soon as you put the red “X” on a food, what you’ve really done is hand all of your power over to that food. And when food has power…guess what?

It wins.

You are then left feeling hopeless and lacking any shred of willpower. But this doesn’t have to be your destiny because you can flip the switch in a literal instant and take your power back. How? By remembering these four little words:

No food is forbidden.

Give it a try and watch what happens when you lay that mantra on top of any food you feel weak and powerless around. 

No food is forbidden: this is Missing Peace #3 in my new book Missing Peace: 11 Secrets to Restore Inner Harmony with Your Food, Body, and Health. 

At first it may sound like I’m telling you to grab a grocery cart and fill it with all kinds of junk on your next shopping trip. Of course that’s not true! But what I am suggesting to you is this: Now you have a choice. And when you allow all food (even if you never end up eating the food), you unlock the door to your food prison cell and are free to make the choices that will serve you best—mind, body, and spirit. 

Mel’s weekly product pick:
Boiron’s Sepia 

Warning: Men, you are about to enter into “girl talk”. Yes, I’m talking about the big “P”—the word you dread hearing: Period. 

But wait! Don’t leave. If you have a woman in your life that you love and adore, keep on reading because her life (and yours) will be much more pleasant when Aunt Flo pays her monthly visit.

Boiron is a world leader in homeopathy. A company that has been around since 1932, they offer remedies for everything from allergies and the flu, to stress, and yes…menstrual pain. You can visit their website to learn more about all of their solutions. They even have a free app (search for ‘Boiron Medicine Finder’) where you can enter your symptom and then receive recommended remedies.  

I have personal experience with Boiron’s Sepia, a remedy for bloating and lower back pain that always strike me during that time of the month. Prior to discovering Sepia, I would begrudgingly take Motrin to ease my symptoms. Now, I can’t even remember the last time I popped a traditional pain-reliever. Yes, this stuff is that good.

The active ingredient in Sepia is cuttlefish ink. Cuttlefish are marine animals related to octopus and squid. To watch them in action, click HERE! Mother Nature is amazing. How they stumbled upon this remedy is beyond me. All I know is, it works! 

Sepia comes in little white pellets that dissolve quickly under the tongue. And don’t worry, they have a sweet taste…nothing like ink! 🙂 

Mel’s weekly recipe pick:
African Peanut Stew

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Restore inner harmony with your food, body, & health

October 4th, 2018 | no comments

Plus:

 

In September of 2015, I had an epiphany:

Missing Peace.

Boom! Just like that, the title flashed before my eyes. 

I explored it a bit more and began to feel a strong urge to write a book that shared all of the pieces that people tend to ignore (or miss) when they set out to improve their health.

I got super inspired because I now had the platform to share my knowledge and passion with the world. It’s what I’ve felt for years and the source of my frustration when friends, family or clients would hop on the next diet. Instead of being supportive, I would shoot it down and become angry. Angry at myself because I couldn’t help them. At one time, I was them and I knew deep down where this diet would lead them. They didn’t need another diet; they needed a deeper understanding of themselves and their immense power. They needed to understand the missing pieces in their lives that were keeping them from achieving lasting peace with their food, body, and health. Peace that is their birthright.

The concept of my book, Missing Peacewas born out of a burning desire to share my message with the world. To share the lessons I learned in hopes that it will help just one person. I’ve always said that if I can help change just one person’s life for the better, I could die tomorrow at peace. This book is for that one person—you. 

Missing Peace is for the open minded. The self-blamers who are sick and tired of the uphill struggle, the topsy turvy, loop de loop battle with food and their health. It is for you my friend, you know who you are. The one who feels lost and not quite sure where to turn. The one who awakens every morning in despair, believing that this is the best life has to offer. You have no idea how misled you are.

If you have an open mind and are ready to learn more, check out Missing Peace.

If you don’t know where else to turn, check out Missing Peace.

I promise you, this experience will be like turning on the light switch in the dark room of your life.

With so much love and gratitude for YOU.

 

Mel’s weekly food pick:
Ashwagandha Root

According to the BareOrganics website: Ashwagandha is a coveted herb in Ayurveda, a system of traditional, natural healing with origins in India. The root is the most beneficial part of this small shrub and is well known for its energizing properties, coining the name, “Indian Ginseng.”

Ashwagandha has been identified as having adaptogenic properties, which are thought to be able to support the body’s natural response to stress.

By itself, ashwagandha is on the bitter side, so it is best when mixed in smoothies, energy bite recipes, tonics (like Moon Milk ), and fudge! See this week’s recipe pick below for Chill-the-Hell-Out Fudge

Ashwagandha also comes in capsule form. Check out Ancient Apothecary’s Fermented Ashwagandha or Gaia’s Ashwagandha Root.


Mel’s weekly recipe pick:

Chill-the-Hell-Out Fudge

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