Mythbusters Edition

I have had multiple people request a post on the truths and tales regarding nutrition, so I want to address this topic with professionalism and honesty 🙂 I will start with this–there are ALOT OF MYTHS about health, wellness, fitness and nutrition in the media and elsewhere. It can be difficult to decipher what is a spoof and what could potentially be a big help to your health.

Don’t believe everything you hear, read, see: Always be a critic and a skeptic when it comes to learning about nutrition. Here’s how you can be sure–> Read accredited articles, journals that are backed up by REAL science and scientific studies. Anyone can conduct scientific research on sites like ebsco.com . Search and search until you find your answer, and then search some more to compare articles and studies to each other to come to your own educated decision on the topic of interest.

Quick Info–>

  • Supplementations for your diet should be a second choice to REAL FOOD. Your body is meant to digest whole foods and receive vitamins, minerals and nutrients from that source. When you choose to supplement you are not able to absorb those nutrients as well because it is a much lesser concentration than what is provided in an actual food source. SO…unless you are vegetarian or vegan or skipping out on a specific food source entirely, try to get your macronutrients and micronutrients from organic (if possible) and whole food sources. If you have questions about eating a specific diet please comment below or feel free to email me at madie.sears@gmail.com.
  • Superfoods/Supplements: We’ve all heard of the exotic goji berry, noni berry, cod liver oil, aloe vera juice, whey, creatine, etc supplements that the advertising industry has thrown our way lately. My personal opinion on superfoods is based on what I learned in school, especially in my functional foods course last semester. These foods can be helpful to you health and dietary intake! So if you’re into it–go for it (in the appropriate and recommended amounts).
    • BUT–> You shouldn’t treat supplements or superfoods as an end all be all to any nutrition-related issue because in order to “prevent cancer”, “prevent cardiovascular disease”, or “promote cell turnover”, whatever their big health claim may be—in reality these food items would have to be ingested in very large amounts/concentrations that aren’t feasible for us to accomplish. This goes for vitamins and minerals as well as superfoods. Unless you have a medically defined and diagnosed excess or deficiency in your diet–the goal is to get these vital nutrients through real food and not supplements.

Personally–I love having a protein shake after a workout or as a meal replacement. I also have a greens supplement to add to your smoothies or drink as a meal replacement called Living Fuel–check out the products here http://www.livingfuel.com. I take probiotics every day to balance my intestinal flora, and regularly drink kombucha tea and enjoy other probiotic filled and fermented foods like kimchi and greek yogurt (post on probiotics coming soon!!). I also take a daily B complex vitamin and iron supplement because I am a pescatarian and do not always have these daily recommended intakes met just through my food intake—because a lot of these come only from animal sources like meat.

These are things I have found that are right for me!! Please take into mind that everyone is different and has different nutritional needs–even on a daily basis these needs can change. Try what works for you and go from there! & remember–do your own research (not on google)! 🙂

Please comment your thoughts and/or questions below and feel free to share with friends and family!

Much love angels,

Madelene

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Smoothie of the Month <3

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I’m a big smoothie drinker, and I love to replace lunch or breakfast with a protein smoothie when I’m busy or just want something light! They are also amazing to have right after a hard workout! I will be doing a smoothie of the month from now on so if you have any requests or questions please comment below 🙂

Since I am mainly vegetarian a lot of my smoothies have some sort of protein factor and I love to have one post hot yoga! — It is really important to have protein after a workout & I will go into detail on this in another blog post (to come soon!) If you have any questions about fueling your workout with proper foods feel free to comment below & I will make sure to include your topic in my blog post about fueling workouts!

Here is the smoothie of the month—it is my copycat version of Smoothie King’s Vegan Dark Chocolate Banana and a combo inspo from Juiceland’s Moontower smoothie 🙂

  • 1 scoop Vega chocolate protein powder (or any other gluten free and vegan protein powder)
  • 12 oz organic almond milk
  • 1 organic banana
  • 1/4 cup frozen organic wild blueberries

Blend and enjoy! Who doesn’t love chocolate?? & VEGAN chocolate at that ! Yum 🙂

Much love angels & I hope you enjoy ❤

Madelene

Why Yoga?

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Last weekend someone asked me why and how yoga is known as a spiritual practice. I guess I’ve never been so directly asked that question so I was surprised to hear it. In my head I answered…”How could it be anything but a spiritual practice?” It was hard for me to understand his point of view at first. This is because yoga has been the strongest, most connecting spiritual practice for me that I’ve ever encountered—and that is saying a lot. Growing up I went to christian summer camps every summer, attended church, studied the bible with my father and many others, and last but not least was counseled by multiple psychologists and counselors, for various reasons. Nothing has ever helped me to become a stronger me and to connect me with the universe and all that it has to offer me as much as yoga has. These are reasons I practice every day. In the chaos of life, I can always return to my mat, at any place at any time, and it is always the same consistent and uplifting flow of asanas (poses). My yoga instructor calls it “our open-eye meditation”, because that’s what it is.  I have grown to learn to focus on my breath, hold a meditative gaze and to really turn off that inner voice that doubts, overanalyzes, and psychs us out–daily. Yoga has diminished my anxiety in a HUGE way, and it has strengthened my body inside and out. The big thing with yoga (for me) is that you can learn so much on your mat, in class or at your home practice and then take those feelings and those strengths out into the world in your every day life. It really is hard to explain but I feel so passionately about it that I feel I need to try and share with others! Yoga has made me more patient, with myself and with others. My practice has allowed me to understand that here and now is the MOST important thing, and how to turn off the negative influences and really meditate. Change your thoughts and you change your world, you may have heard before—and it is SO true. It’s really crazy how such small decisions can change your perception of life. If you don’t want to feel a certain way—change your mind! Your mind has the power to overcome SO much…mind over matter. We have that power for ourselves to choose how we want to feel! Nothing has taught me this more than yoga has. I feel so grateful every day to be involved in the yoga community that I am involved in and to have grown so much over the years with the help of my practice and my peers. If you’d like to come practice with me, anytime please let me know. If yoga isn’t your thing, there are many other ways to view certain experiences as spiritual and to connect deeper to yourself. Your body is your vessel, and we can be brought to a different level of happiness and consciousness by finding gratitude for simple every day things. If yoga isn’t your thing, these kind of connections can be found throughout nature as well, or through anything that you thoroughly enjoy doing. The universe is providing you with that joy so the goal is to accept and love the present moment. Find spiritual thanks through a different perspective and see how it may be beneficial to your life.

Namaste and much love angels,

Madelene

Meatless Monday–What it could mean for you & your family

Meatless Monday

  • Start your week fresh with a meatless meal for dinner for you and your family!
  • Set the week off right with a fresh, clean eating meal
  • Motivate yourself and your family to live a healthy lifestyle
  • Cutting down on excessive meat intake will reduce risks of cancer, diabetes, and nutrition-related diseases
  • Help the environment—leave a smaller carbon footprint because more water usage goes towards livestock than grains and plants
  • Add more variety to your diet as a whole (1/2 of your plate at every meal should be comprised of fruits and veggies)
  • Eat a more balanced diet
  • Try new things with your family!
  • Refer to the Mediterranean food pyramid for a great starting point for fueling your day with a plant-based diet

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This weekend for my internship with Texas Farmer’s Market, I prepared my favorite quinoa salad with basil vinaigrette! My goal was to educate on the importance of including fresh and organic fruits and veggies in your everyday intake. As stated above, produce can aid your body in fighting disease unlike any other food group! Use food to fuel your body, not to just fill you up–and see how your energy level changes, and how your overall weight and health improve! The mediterranean food pyramid is a great resource if you are wanting to learn more about eating a diet that is more plant-based instead of centering each meal on a meat dish. Try something new & something light like this quinoa salad to kick start your produce-focused eating plan!

Quinoa Salad with Basil Vinaigrette 

First things first–>find this basil vinaigrette recipe at my favorite food blog www.whatsgabycooking.com ! She has some amazing recipes y’all so go check out her site! Thank you Gaby for getting me hooked on basil vinaigrette!

  •  Add your ingredients from Gaby’s recipe to your blender or food processor and hit the go button!!
  • For the quinoa salad, you will need equal parts–>
  • cooked and cooled organic quinoa
  • chopped red onion
  • diced organic cucumber
  • diced organic bell peppers (red, yellow, orange, green) Eat the rainbow 🙂
  • cooked organic garbanzo beans (I just rinse them from a can, and throw in a pot on medium heat for about 10 minutes!)
  • organic feta cheese ❤ ❤
  • throw all your veggies into a bowl
  • add the basil vinaigrette to taste (in my opinion you can never have too much basil!)
  • top with feta, toss salad again to incorporate

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Thanks for viewing!
Comment below if you have any questions and feel free to share my blog with your friends and families!

Much love angels,

Madelene

Why you should also be a breakfast queen (or king)

Breakfast is my favorite meal of the day for many reasons! Eating a balanced breakfast every day has helped me maintain a healthy weight, keep me energized throughout the day and help me focus better in lecture–& as a college senior, I need all the assistance I can get in those early morning classes! Keeping up with a well-rounded and a plant based diet decreases your risk for cancer and couch potato-related illness as well! For example insulin resistance, type two diabetes mellitus, hypertension & heart & liver disease! From all these years of nutrition education, I have been guided to change my lifestyle for the better so that I can use my nutrition as a force against illness and disease that I otherwise would be prone to inheriting (for example hypertension/high blood pressure). I’d love to answer any nutrition questions that readers may have and would be excited to hear feedback as well on these posts! I aim to post about nutrition and wellness as a combination–because you can’t have one without the other 🙂

Xo–Breakfast Queen

Today’s balanced breakfast (plant-based & organic!)–>

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chopped red onion

spinach

cilantro

cherry tomatoes

–>Chop veggies and cilantro, pour a teaspoon of coconut oil onto sautĂ© pan and sautĂ© veggies on low for about 5 minutes.

–>Scramble 2 organic eggs in a bowl and then slowly pour on top of sautĂ©ed veggies & cook on low-med for about 5 more minutes, use a spatula to fold over your omelette and flip if desired!

–>add salt and peps & your favorite salsa or some avocado slices!

–>On the side half an organic apple

In this meal you are fueling your body and day with protein from the eggs, carbs from your fruit & a magnitude of phytochemicals from all those veggies! Read about phytochemical here –> (http://www.phytochemicals.info)

Choose organic to reduce your risk of ingesting preservatives and harmful pesticides! Visiting your local farmer’s market is a great way to save some cash when shopping organic and you’ll be supporting local business, stimulating your community’s economy (all in one fell swoop!) 🙂

Stay tuned for more recipes and information on nutrition and wellness

Much love!

“I was given this world, I didn’t make it”-2Pac

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My yoga instructor said something in our class last night that really resonated with me and had me thinking outside the box this past day. She said “We don’t take a breath” (as often spoken as a figure of speech–take a breath in, etc),—but! “We are given breath”. How profound is this thought? For me, the first thing that came to mind was gratitude—but as I kept thinking about this breath we are given, I also came to the idea of our desire to control–to take that breath. We’re always wanting to use our “power”, control and our plan for everything in our lives…but maybe it’s time for us to just stop trying so hard. I think in this life we are given our breath and so so much more. What about for example just simply and purely–our lives? I don’t want to miss out on anything this life has to offer me. I’ve mentioned on some sort of social media that “I am on the no plan plan”…and I truly aim to live my life that way. It’s not about my plan and it never has been, it is the universe’s plan! How exciting is that? Forces work in and out of your life to bring you exactly where you are supposed to be–even now, reading this blog post 🙂 I think when we focus so much on our own plans for our lives and fixate on the way we want certain situations to go–we set ourselves up for failure because we are not in control of all of our experiences, and life is better that way! So along with being grateful each day and for each breath, also be aware that you are not so much in control of this life that you have the power to take that breath, but rather you are choosing to mindfully accept the breath as a gift given to you by the universe. How much joy could be brought to your life by changing your observation of the breath?

& all of this brought on by–Yoga!–It will heal your mind and body–as one.<3

Much love angels,

Madelene