Thursday, December 12, 2013

Juicing to Induce Labor

Here I am in my 37th week of pregnancy.  Walking around with a projected, stretched out ball of a belly that
quite frankly just doesn't look humanly possible.  I haven't seen my feet in months and I'm waddling like a bow-legged sailor!  I tell you, if this baby doesn't come on time, I am ready to start some natural inducing methods!

For all of you overdue and aching for that precious soul to be born... here is a juice that is said to help move things along.


  • 1/4 pineapple
  • 1 cup raspberries
  • 1/2 cup brewed and cooled raspberry leaf tea
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper to taste
Don't be surprised if this not only wakes you up but get's that baby moving!

Happy pregnancy to all and I hope this season keeps you warm... go forth and Juice!

**Now, the obvious applies here... if you have an abnormal pregnancy or are under other advisement, DO NOT attempt.  Always seek your health professional's advice.**

Friday, November 8, 2013

Go Away Acne!

As the weather changes in our region, eating habits take on a pattern of their own.  Fresh summer salads all of a sudden don't sound as good as rich roasts and hot, cheesy dishes.  Especially now that I'm pregnant and almost ready to burst, I want foods that pack richness vs. light and refreshing.

The body naturally is trying to survive the winter.  So it releases the necessary survival hormones telling the body to stock up on energy rich foods including carbs and fats.

This type of change in eating, change in weather and the added physical stress of these changes all add up.  One noticeable effect could be acne and breakouts around the face, chest and extremities... that's right... extremities too!

Society points us in the direction of external products and fixes.  Creams, topical medications, $100's of dollars later your face is caked in goop and you just noticed a new pimple forming on the end of your nose... AHHHH!

I've found that skin directly reflects the chemistry of your body... internally.  A delicate balance of food, hormones and PH all combine to produce the complexion that stares back at you from that mirror every morning.  Of course external factors play a part, but the majority of complexion responsibility is held from within the body.

Which is why I turn to juicing to help cleanse and heal my insides for a brighter, clearer complexion.  Some of the main ingredients and benefits are:

  • Sweet potatoes and carrots: Vitamin A and C which directly combat breakouts and improve skin conditions
  • Kale: High in iron which aids in blood health, elevating oxygen levels, renewed cell growth and liver function; also high in antioxidants and anti-inflammatories
Here is a recipe to try that not only helps provide radiant skin but also will help satisfy that need for something a little more substantial during these colder months.

Radiant Skin Juice:
  • 2 sweet potatoes 
  • 4 carrots
  • 1/2 in ginger
  • Sprinkle of cinnamon
Just because it's gloomy outside, doesn't mean you can't radiate!  Enjoy!

Thursday, October 17, 2013

A Yummy Coffee Alternative - While Pregnant

Almost 8 months pregnant and I WANT COFFEE!

Yes, I sometimes splurge and indulge in a small cup of dark roast only to reap the aftermath of a burning
stomach and a mid-afternoon crash.  Ugh!

Trying different things I've settled on the yummy, vibrant flavors of Chai tea.  "How could that even compare," you ask?

Simple... Chai is a mixture of black tea and spices.  This spicy blend not only invigorates the senses but also calms and soothes the digestive tract and stomach.  The brewed tea, spices and sometimes milk alternative combine to provide the satisfaction of a cup of Joe without the side affects during those late months in pregnancy.

Here are a list of the spices and benefits... just to name a few!

  • Fennel - high in phytonutrients and antioxidants that fight/prevent inflammation and cancer
  • Anise - high in Schikimic Acid which is an anti-viral and immune booster
  • Cardamom - good for digestion, detox and is an anti-inflammatory
  • Clove - good for digestion, detox and is an anti-inflammatory
  • Cinnamon - helps with muscle spasms/cramps, diarrhea, vomiting and overall digestion
  • Ginger - relieves gastrointestinal distress amongst a laundry list of other digestive benefits
  • Black pepper - reduces heartburn and indigestion by stimulating the digestive tract 
Other ingredients...
  • Black tea - antioxidant rich with a kick of energy
  • Honey - antimicrobial and antioxidant while giving you an energy boost
  • Milk alternative (coconut milk, almond milk, hemp milk...) - protein and energy
So... I suppose that the symptoms of the infamous "third trimester" don't have to get in the way of my morning cup of YUM.  I just needed to tweak a few things and embrace a new and improved wake-up drink!

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Juicing to Cure that Burn!

Heartburn is no joke.  That sharp pain followed by an intense burning deep in your chest can really interrupt your everyday life.  Now that I am in my 22nd week of pregnancy it seems that this is a daily battle!  It doesn't matter what I eat, discomfort follows.

Gastroesophageal reflux, commonly known as heartburn, is caused by acidic fumes/gasses from the stomach invading the esophagus.  This causes the esophagus to be injured and therefore feel very tender.  Normally the esophagus can eliminate excess gasses, however, when irritated by these acidic fumes, this reflux can cause enormous amounts of pain.  Especially when competing with a fetus!

What causes this horrible reaction?  

  • Stress
  • Overeating
  • Processed foods
  • Food allergies
  • Excess acidic foods
  • Medications
  • and more... 

So what am I doing differently to hinder my heartburn?  

I'm back on the juice!  Incorporating the following ingredients into my juicing regimen has helped tremendously.  Also, I've started eating a couple other herbs and foods to compliment the approach.

Juicing ingredients to try:

  • Carrots
  • Spinach
  • Kale
  • Celery
  • Cucumber
  • Cabbage
  • Lemon
  • Beets
Foods/herbs to incorporate:
  • Avocado
  • Papaya
  • Lemongrass
Try my No More Burn Juice next time you feel the affects of heartburn... 
  • 1/2 cup brewed lemongrass tea (steeped and cooled)
  • 1/2 cucumber
  • 1 bunch spinach
  • 1/4 head of cabbage (medium)
  • 1/2 lemon
  • If you need a little sweet, try a touch of honey or Stevia... note this may aggravate your digestion, so listen to your body and respond appropriately
Happy healing!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Juicing - the Anti-Depressant

Aside from certain chemical imbalance based depression, juice really can "make you happy!"

A study done by the University of Warwick in conjunction with Dartmouth College (2012) found that within a group of over 80,000 individuals, "Happiness and mental health rise in an approximately dose-response way with the number of daily portions of fruits and vegetables. While in some cases it rounds out at the recommended five per day, well-being appears to peak at seven."

What a testimony to the affects of diet on mental health and well-being!  And what better way to start enhancing that diet to include adequate/increased portions of fresh produce...?  JUICING!

Here are a few ingredients to consider that will have the highest and quickest mood-enhancing properties:

  • Citrus - these fruits pack a bright and joyful flavor as well as an aroma that will naturally brighten mood
  • Mango - the satisfying flavor and texture of this fruit make for a long lasting and sustained energy boost
  • Lemon Balm - an herb known to brighten mood through steeping in hot water
  • Ginger - helps to stimulate the body from the inside out, increasing blood flow, digestion and mood
  • Chamomile - an herb known to calm the nerves and reduce anxiety through steeping in hot water
A simple juice combo for depression:

Be Happy Juice
  • 1 Lemon
  • 1 Carrot
  • 1 Mango (pitted)
  • 2 Handfuls Spinach
  • 1/4 cup steeped and cooled chamomile, ginger and lemon balm tea
Want some movement to go along with your juice?  Try these 6 yoga poses to help open the body, mind and spirit to the happiness that awaits you!
  1. Child Pose
  2. Forward Bend
  3. Legs Up On Wall
  4. Cat Pose
  5. Back Bend
  6. Hand Stand

As usual, please consult your physician or health care professional with questions or advice about current medications or affects.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Smarter Than a Two-Year-Old - Smoothies!

I'm sitting at the dinner table a couple months ago, while my two-year-old daughter stares stubbornly into my eyes.  The "eat your veggie" stare-down has begun.  I repeat myself one more time, "Isabella Rose, you have two choices; 1) You eat your broccoli, or 2) You eat your carrots." 
The look she gave me was priceless and it took everything in me not to laugh.  She squinted those pretty brown eyes and said, "Berries."  That little stinker!  Alas... it was an all or nothing evening, and she ended up with nothing.  The consequences of the two-year-old decision making cycle.

I've since gotten "smarter than a two-year-old" and found easier ways to hide those veggies.  My favorite method is morning smoothies.  Yes... the juicing-lady does make and drink smoothies too!  Smoothies are a spectacular way for you and our younger generation to get benefits such as:
  1. Increased vitamin and mineral intake
  2. Increase fiber - equating to being full longer which ultimately reduces cravings and the need to "snack"
  3. Increased vegetable intake - drinking your veggies allows for greater volumes and thus greater benefits
  4. Sustained energy - the slow release of the proteins and sugars helps adults and children alike to have even and sustained energy; resulting in higher capacity brain functions, more efficient digestion and overall more even-kieled attitudes and hormone regulation
  5. Hydration - we all know we don't get enough water throughout the day which makes this a no-brainer
  6. Plus... they are quick, cheap and easy!
Here are some tips on making smoothies:
  • Keep stocked on Honey/Vanilla Greek Yogurt - the taste is almost sinful and I have to pry the spoon away from my daughter every time we use it
  • Bananas - sweet, high in potassium and easy to blend
  • Frozen fruits - they are cheap and easy to keep around plus the frozen texture adds a yummy element to the smoothies
  • Coconut and/or Almond milk - a way to regulate the texture while adding nutrients
  • Fun drinking cups, spoons and straws - why not make this an event that everyone looks forward to!
Now for the "healthy stuff":
  • Fresh Avocado - easy to hide due to it's mild flavor and smooth texture, this fruit adds the good oils and fats that everyone is so depleted of
  • Fresh Spinach - another easy to hide veggie which also adds a fun green color to the mix
  • Fresh Papaya - a unique flavor that helps with digestion and also a fun peachy color - we even dry this sometimes as alternatives to gummy-candy
  • Fresh Pineapple - it's just yummy
Others that I like to throw in the mix:
  • Coconut Meat - fantastic proteins, oils and nutrients, plus a yummy flavor
  • Frozen or Fresh Peaches
  • Broccoli - if you are feeling adventurous
Go forth and "Smoothie" my friends... all ages will thank you!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

The Top 10 - Why we juice!

Why do we juice?  Why put in all this effort... what is the true gain of juicing fresh produce?

First and foremost... I do it for my family and I do it for me!

When it comes to health benefits... here are my 'Top 10" and why we here at JUL Juice do what we do!

  1. Energy - A clean and clear system operates much more efficiently to sustain energy throughout the day.  The easily consumable energy within juice allows for fast energy without the crash!
  2. Clear mind - Regulated blood sugar and reduced stress/stimulation on the adrenals helps to allow the necessary blood flow to the brain without "stimulating" the system.
  3. Weight loss - Highly efficient organs and systems create an environment where extra weight can now "drop off" to only what is needed.
  4. Better sleep - A clear mind and higher functioning body all equate to a more restful sleep that is uninterrupted by indigestion, discomfort and stress.
  5. Regulated mood - Even blood sugar and more even hormone releases equate to a more regulated mood throughout the day.
  6. Satisfied hunger - Highly concentrated nutrients tell the body that it is full and does not need that "extra" serving.
  7. Clear, glowing skin - A system clear of toxins will show in the body's largest organ... the skin!
  8. Increased immune system - High doses of nutrients and antioxidants help clear the system of toxins and increase the body's natural disease fighting powers.
  9. Reduces inflammation - Reduces risks and helps heals damage caused by toxins and disease.
  10. Hydration - Drinking high volumes of liquids on top of a healthy intake of H2O replenish the body, helps build and sustain blood which creates a clean and clear system.
I figure... even if I get a handful of these benefits, it is still a giant leap in the right direction.  Juicing has changed my life, changed the way I think about life and has created an avenue to help me control my health, my weight and my life.

What an amazing path... Go and seek the change!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Juicing for Stress

Reduce that stress and "chill-out!"  Has anyone told you this lately?

Well, it may be time for a mini-intervention.  If you are like me, you can't just ignore your kids or tell your
boss to "back-off."

Stress has horrific affects on the body that are sometime irreparable.  For instance:

  • Increased signs of aging
  • Adrenal overload
  • Stomach pain/ulcers
  • Muscle pain/strain
  • Headaches
  • Mood swings
  • Depression
  • Anger
  • And so much more...

So then what do you do?  You juice... of course!

A really simple stress-reducing juice, right away in the morning and then again either for dinner or shortly after will help to calm that mind.  Try this routine if you are feeling squeezed by life and need some relief from the constant stress.

No More Stress Juice Routine:

  1. Sit down... take a deep breath and just be for 30 seconds.  Set a timer and just BE.  Try to empty your mind and tune out all around you.  Focus on NOTHING.
  2. Get up, do some head/neck rolls and juice the following:
    1. 1 white potato (med-large)
    2. 1 carrot
    3. 1 tomato
    4. 1 stalk celery
    5. Handful of spinach
    6. 3 stalks parsley
    7. Juice and either pour over ice or drink at room temperature
  3. Smile :)
  4. At night, steep a cup of chamomile tea and relax and enjoy it.  Ask someone to watch the kids for 10 minutes, or wait until they are asleep and sit in a quite place and enjoy.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Citrus Cooler - June is here!

June is here and it's time to start thinking... COOL!

Here's a great recipe to cool you off, to keep that immune system in peak shape and to cleanse the system.

1 grapefruit peeled
1 blood orange peeled
1/2 lemon peeled
1 mango peeled/pitted
1/2 cucumber
1/4 bunch mint

This is also a great one to make in advance or to share with the family.  Make a jug of it on Sunday night and enjoy as a morning treat all week.

Happy almost summer!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Pregnancy Juice!

You find out you are pregnant... then what?  Do you stop juicing?  Do you change your life completely... how are you going to keep up with your health?

All good questions!  The answer is simple... if it is good for you and does not pose risk to pregnancy (in general) then it is good for baby.

It is VERY important to note that if you have been juice fasting or have been drinking mainly juice and little solids... it is time to change that and start introducing healthy, solid foods in conjunction with juice. Your body and your baby need the nutrients and health benefits found within whole foods.  It is still a good idea to stick with mostly fresh vegetables and fruits, however it may be time to start introducing additional food high in fiber, fatty acids, folic acid and all additional calories.

Your body is ramping up to support life!

With that said, here are some good suggestions for juicing in the first stages of pregnancy:

  • Keep parsley to a minimum: parsley is known to affect contractions when taken in high dosages.  So keep it to a sprig or two a few times per week or less.
  • Ginger - Ginger - Ginger: I can't say enough good things about this root.  It not only settles a stomach but improves the integrity of the entire digestive system while invigorating the body... for a little added energy!
  • Citrus: this will keep your energy up, your spirits up and will ensure your immune system is on the "up and up."
  • Cucumber: a fantastic hydrating and anti-bloating veggie.  
  • Apples: natural, slow-burning sugars... lots of fiber and good, cleansing properties.  Plus they are yummy!
  • Juice 2-3 times per day!
Try this for a refreshing first trimester juice recipe:
1 small knob of ginger
1 lemon
1 orange
1 green apple
1/4 cucumber
Handful of spinach

Happy Prego-Juicing! 

Friday, May 10, 2013

Burn that FAT!

I've been into "fat burning" lately.  The concept is fascinating... What do you eat to burn fat?  What do you to burn fat?  What do you do to burn fat?  The perfect trifecta!

First of all... why is it so important to burn fat?

Excess fat carried in the body has an astounding affect on your health.  Some may include:

  • High blood pressure
  • Joint and back pain
  • Adrenal distress
  • Liver distress
  • Increased risks of cancer and other diseases
  • And more...
There are three ways to combat fat!
  1. You have to EAT to burn fat.
  2. You have to DRINK to burn fat.
  3. You have to EXERCISE to burn fat.
What to EAT:
  • Nuts with skin (raw almonds, walnuts...etc)
  • Berries
  • Fatty fish
  • Grapefruit
  • Chili peppers
  • Spinach and other green veggies
  • Lemon
  • Ginger
  • Quinoa
  • Brown Rice
  • Beans and Legumes
  • Lentils
What to DRINK:
  • Fresh juice with these ingredients:
    • Grapefruit
    • Berries
    • Green veggies
    • Lemon
    • Ginger
  • Green Tea
What to DO:
  • Activities that vary your heart-rate and keep your heart-rate up!  Examples include:
    • Sports (Basketball, football, soccer, swimming, crew, rugby...etc)
    • Interval workouts (Running, hills, biking... etc)
    • Classes (Bootcamp, step, spinning... etc)
  • Activities that include resistance and stamina
    • Yoga
    • Long distance cardio (Running, biking, swimming, kayaking... etc)
    • Low weight/High repetition weights and resistance workouts
    • Planks
  • Activities that reduce stress (do this in addition to the above)
    • Walking
    • Hiking
    • Playing outside
    • Yoga
    • Stretching
    • Meditating
And the lists go on...

If you have extra fat that you are ready to take care of, try these tips to help burn fat and turn it into lean mass.  Your heart, your body and your soul will thank you!

Friday, May 3, 2013

Weekend Tip - Happy Cinco de Mayo!

Here is a good reminder for us all as we go into the "Cinco de Mayo" weekend holiday!

More than likely sodium will play a HUGE part in your weekend.  A little salt on those fresh corn chips... a salt-rimmed margarita... braised meets and salsa... YUM!  So, instead of cutting out all the fun, how about these simple tips to help you manage your way through this savory weekend!

Start each weekend day with...

  1. 2-3 large glasses of room temperature water with a 1/4 of a squeezed lemon and a pinch of Himalayan sea salt (I know... combat salt with salt?  But it works!).
  2. 1 large glass of fresh juice: 80% greens/10% sweet vegetables/10% fruit.  Not the tastiest of the ratios but it will set you up for a MUCH better day.
  3. A banana.
Before you indulge...
  1. 1 large glass of water with fresh, muddled mint and a pinch of cayenne pepper.
  2. 1 serving/1 c of a complex grain (quinoa, brown rice, sprouted grain, spelt...).  I like a toasted piece of sprouted grain toast drizzled with a little bit of honey!
  3. 1 green apple.
End each weekend day with...
  1. 1 large glass of room temperature water with a 1/4 of a squeezed lemon and a pinch of Himalayan sea salt.
  2. A 4 oz shot of juice (weat grass or straight, dark greens: spinach, kale...etc).  
This won't CURE the damage completely but it will help with...
  1. Reducing bloating
  2. Minimal water weight gain
  3. Flushing the system of immediate toxins
  4. Regulating hunger
  5. Regulating blood sugar levels
  6. Reducing cravings
  7. Increased energy and awareness
  8. Hydration
  9. Reduce hangover symptoms
  10. And much more!
Have a fun and safe weekend my Juice-mates!

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Food for Your Mood!

No joke... I am looking out over 6 INCHES of fresh snow right now... May 2nd... Not cool, Spring!

With Mother Nature playing with my emotions, I am in dyer need of some mood-boosting meals today.  Something that will put a smile on my face and remind me that "Everything's gonna be alright," thanks Mr. Marley for the mantra.

Here are some foods and a couple recipes to help boost your mood... even if you don't have a sea of white snow plaguing you today, stimulation of the brain and "feel good" hormones is good for anyone... anytime!

Foods for your mood:

  • Apricots: high in L-tryptophan which helps release serotonin into the system, reducing stress and anxiety
  • Bananas: high in Vitamin B6, Potassium and L-tryptophan which fights fatigue, irritability, stress and anxiety
  • Asparagus: high in the B Vitamins and minerals which increases energy and fights depression and anxiety
  • Avocados: high in monounsaturated fats which lifts mood
  • Sweet Potatoes: high in Vitamin B6, C, Iron and Potassium which again fights fatigue, irritability and helps the immune system
  • Walnuts: a natural brain food to help cognitive functioning and mood
  • Cinnamon: helps regulate blood sugar and digestion which means less mood swings and more even feelings of contentment
  • Brown Rice: regulates blood sugar, increases alertness and is naturally nigh in magnesium which combats stress
Try these recipes today to help lift your mood to someplace happy and sunny!

Yummy Mood Juice
3 apricots pitted
5 large spears of asparagus
1 sweet potato
Pinch of cinnamon atop the cup of juice

Moody Brown Rice
Cooked brown rice (with cilantro, garlic and a little sea salt)
Roasted sweat potatoes
Toasted walnuts
Sliced avocado
Cherry tomatoes
Steamed asparagus
Cilantro - chopped
Green onion - chopped
*Toss together with a little lemon, olive oil and sea salt

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Coffee vs. Juice in the Morning

Oooh the smell of a good dark roast brewing in my kitchen... there is nothing better.  I am a coffee-a-holic to say the least and I love walking into a Caribou, refilling my "to-go" mug and breathing in the aromas of my first cup of the day.

Needless to say... that mug of coffee is doing the exact opposite of what I want it to do... Wake me up!

We all know that coffee has caffeine in it.  What you might not know is the affect coffee has on your body vs. what natural fruits, vegetables and juices can do!

Coffee - One small cup in all it's supposed glory!

  • 1 small cup has over 150 mg of caffeine (image what a grande has!)
  • Stimulates the central nervous system by mimicking stress (fight or flight responses) within the body.  
    • Produces Cortosol which increases belly fat production
    • Taxing on adrenals, tissues and major organs
  • Dehydrates and leaches vitamins and minerals from the body
    • It takes 3 cups of water to replenish the body from 1 cup of coffee
    • Increases signs of aging
    • Lowers energy
    • Increases bloating
  • Imbalanced blood sugar
    • Carb cravings
    • Mood swings
No wonder coffee causes you to crash just hours after consumption!

Fresh Juice or Fresh Fruits/Vegetables - One cup in all its actual glory!
  • Released slowly through the body for sustained energy
  • 1 cup of juice has as much energy as up to 3 cups of coffee!
    • Detoxes
    • Contains natural sugars
    • Increases cell health and regeneration
    • Contains nutrients and minerals that coffee does not
  • Hydrates the body
  • Regulates blood sugar
    • Powerful life enzymes
    • "Blood building" capabilities
    • Slow release of natural sugars/energy
  • Best of all... NO CRASHES!
So next time you reach for something to "wake you up" in the morning, reach for a piece of fruit or make a glass of juice!  You will be amazed at the difference in the kind of energy you will feel. 

Try this as a morning wake-up alternative!

Green Tea Morning Cooler
  • 1/2 cup fresh brewed green tea - chilled
  • 2 green apples
  • 1 bunch spinach
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 1/2 cucumber
  • Small bunch of mint

Friday, April 26, 2013

It's a High Energy Day!

It's a high energy day today!  It's time to take that energy and run with it... make something fantastic happen today.  Call a friend and get outside.  Corral your little ones and grill out.

Today is a day to open your heart... open your spirit and soak up the light and love that this day has to offer. We are all in need of this, so take advantage and allow this energy to renew!

Focus on the things that bring happiness and joy and allow the other things to fall away.  If they need to come back for future attention... the will.

Happy Friday and happy weekend!
Shannon Rose and the JUL Juice Team

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Juice for Those Dang Sinuses!

If you are located in the mid-west, you understand that spring is late this year!  I'm looking out my office window noting a foot of snow still in some areas of the parking lot...ugh!

With that said, my sinuses are not appreciating the prolonged cold weather.  The constant drops below 30 degrees F and then up again to 50+ degrees F in the daytime are causing pain, congestion and even a slight sore throat.
Not to get into the gory details, but a little background on Sinusitis - the inflammation of the paranasal sinuses  - there are three basic causes:
  1. Infection
  2. Allergies
  3. Virus
Sinusitis can last up to 12+ weeks depending upon the stage/type!
  1. Acute: 10 days - 4 weeks
  2. Subacute - 4 - 12 weeks
  3. Chronic - 12+weeks
Basic symptoms include congestion, headaches, sore throats, fatigue, stomach aches and more.  Sinusitis may not send you to bed for a week but it certainly hinders your quality of life and ability to function within that life.  As we speak my computer screen is turning fuzzy... Must keep typing...

You don't have to keep suffering for 4, 12 even 20 weeks!  It's time to speed your recovery until summer can return and burn away this crud.

What do I recommend?  My mother's magic solution!
  1. Juice! (3-5 times per day while starting/showing symptoms)
    • Spicy Ginger Juice
      • 1 peeled orange
      • 1/2 lemon
      • 2 green apples
      • 1 in ginger (or more if you can stand it!)
      • 1 pinch of cayenne powder on top of the glass of juice (again... more if you can stand it!)
      • 2 c spinach
  2. Tinctures/Supplements (3 times per day while starting/showing symptoms plus 2-3 days after)
    • Echinacea - immune booster
    • Golden Seal - anti-viral/anti-bacterial
    • Nettles - targets sinuses
    • Quercetin - targets sinuses
    • Vitamin C - immune booster
    • Nose spray with grapefruit seed extract - targets sinuses/inflammation
My mom never steered me wrong... and so I pass along to you!

Sinusitis + Juice * Supplements = Feeling HEAPS better!

Monday, April 22, 2013

Juicing Momma, Juicing Poppa... Juicing Kiddo?

I recently was asked, "Juicing has changed my life!  Can I give the same juice to my kids?"

ABSOLUTELY!  (... keep reading)

Note this first, you are an adult... they are children... you have very different bodies, growing patterns, nutrient needs, digestive tracts, chemistry... and the list goes on.  So keep the tips below in mind while introducing a safe and effective juice plan for both you and your children.

For all of you juicing parents out there, I commend you!  It is not an easy feat to keep yourself fit and healthy while pulling double-shifts as a parent.  So often we tend to put our child's health above our own until we begin to disappear from our own "nutritional radar."

The truth of the matter is that it is so much more difficult to take care of your child when you are in physical distress or diminished health.  Being "out-of-shape," overweight (unhealthy), lethargic and full of toxins prevents you from not only being a fully effective parent but being a good example to your children.  I've even noticed that when I'm not at optimum health, I tend to be more of a passive parent, leaning on television, toys and inside activities to entertain my child.

Doing things together, Parent and Child, is why we had kids in the first place... right?!  Or at least it's why I love being a parent.  There is nothing as captivating as watching a child discover a new talent or a new element... it leaves me speechless every time.

So... getting back to the question at hand (sorry, I digress...), "Can I give the same juice to my kids?"

The answer is still, YES!  Below are some tips to take into consideration:

  1. Make sure the portion in small enough to be utilized as a "supplement" to their diet and NOT a "replacement" for other foods.
  2. Help expand their taste buds!  Little by little, introduce different flavors into the mix.  You will be surprised by how much children will LOVE all kinds of juice... even the "green-stuff!"
  3. Morning and lunch is a great time for juice.  This helps ignite the brain and system for maximum activity and attention throughout the day.  
  4. Nighttime tea is a great way to "wind down" at the end of the day.  You yourself should have a glass yourself.  Watch the both of you melt into a couch, sip your tea and read a chapter of Percy the Pig!  My daughter has become accustomed to tea with a few drops of Stevia in her bottle before bed.  This keeps her system clean and able to repair overnight vs. heavy drinks before bed.
  5. Note allergies and sensitivities. 
  6. Stay organic... those little bodies can only take so much of the concentrated toxins.  Keep it good, local and clean.  Your child's body will thank you for it!
  7. Don't force it... let them enjoy and like it.  Good experiences early will ensure they like it moving forward.
Here are some combos to try with your kids... feel free to make a pitcher the night before and have these as a fun breakfast or "take to school/work" drink!
  • Pineapple - Carrot
  • Cucumber - Apple
  • Broccoli - Pineapple
  • Spinach - Apple
Happy Momma, Poppa, Kiddo juicing!

Friday, April 19, 2013

Ouch! The Dreaded Hangover!

So... you decided to have one more glass of wine?  Your buddies coerced you into that dreaded shot of Jägermeister.  Or maybe you decided to have a movie night gone "too many beers."  Either way, you've now woken up the next morning with a... HANGOVER!

It hurts my head just typing the word!

Hangovers can range in severity with a combination of any of the following symptoms:

  • Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea
  • High body temperatures
  • Excessive sweating
  • Headaches
  • Muscle and body aches
  • Fatigue
  • Moodiness
  • Dizziness
  • Elevated heart-rate
  • Dehydration
  • And more...

What causes these horrific symptoms?  Impurities introduced during the fermentation process.

And what can you do about it? Juice it out!  That's right, get yourself out of bed and make yourself a gigantic glass of juice!

Ingredients that aid in recovery:

  • Bitter gourd - Detox
  • Watercress - Detox
  • Grapefruit - Detox
  • Carrot - Cleanse digestion
  • Green apple - Cleanse digestion
  • Green vegetables (spinach particularly) - Cleanse digestion
  • Beets - Cleanse liver and blood
Next time you've had a little too much fun the night before... try a combo of the above and get drinking... Juice that is!

Feel Good Juice
2 carrots
1 beet
1 stalks celery
1 green apple
1 bunch watercress
Pinch of sea salt
*Follow with 2 HUGE glasses of water

Monday, April 15, 2013

Just Because It's Monday...

Just because it's Monday, doesn't mean you get a free pass!

Mondays are the most important day of the week when it comes to health regimens, especially juicing.  A long weekend of relaxing, having one-too-many glasses of wine and maybe a piece of pie are the exact reasons why you need to boomerang right back to the basics.  If you skip Mondays, you are more likely to digress throughout the week.

Try these tips to help make your Mondays stronger than ever!

  1. Pack a fresh pair of workout clothes and put them in the front seat of your car.  No matter what time of day you workout, they will be there, ready... waiting... "staring" at you... begging you to put them on!
  2. Juice for breakfast.  Nothing starts your day off right than a flat, un-bloated belly!  Stay away from simple carbs, sugar and salt.  Think "clean" and "fresh" which is why juice will make a simple solution!
  3. Pack healthy snacks.  Make little baggies of cut up fresh veggies and fruit so that when you are craving a snack, you have something easy and yummy to grab for.  My favorites are roasted beets and/or sweet potatoes... dry... with a little sea salt.  A few of those tasty morsels and I'm satisfied!
  4. Have a healthy evening meal.  Having a well-rounded, healthy and satisfying meal at the end of your Monday will ensure you don't "slip-up" and enter into the "binge" phase!  Think whole grains, lots of colorful veggies and a little olive oil and sea salt.  Even a lean protein like fish, eggs or chicken can make your day!
So... don't give your power to a "case of the Mondays" and skip out!  Make Mondays a strong day and show Monday who's boss!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

The Pre-workout "Shot"

That's right... shots before your workout... Lucky you!

As I have been experimenting with increased frequency and intensity workouts, I am also looking for ways to improve my performance and endurance.  It is hard enough to get myself to drive to the gym, let alone put on the old sneakers and squeeze into those yoga pants (which are supposed to be slimming... but totally are NOT).  I am tired and unmotivated to start... just like anyone else.  It isn't until I am half-way through my workout that I finally am energized and ready to go!

With this in mind, I was trying to think of ways to boost my energy and motivation early on so that I wanted to get to the gym... so that I felt like I had the energy to follow-through.

What I discovered...

Beets and carrots, hands down were the best pre-workout ingredients.  Why?
  1. Low calories, high in natural sugars (both) = An amazing initial energy boost
  2. Essential vitamins and minerals (both) = Maintained nutrient levels through workout
  3. Folic acid (beets) = Regeneration of new cells and speedy recovery/healing
  4. Betaine(beets)/boron (both) = Anti-depressant and mood booster
  5. Beta-carotene (both) = Anti-aging
  6. Vitamin A (both) = Body cleanser
I loved the feeling of a thrilling boost of energy, increased motivation due to a better mood and the feeling of having sustained energy throughout my workout.  Why not try this recipe before your next gym excursion?

Power Workout Red!
4 carrots
1 beet
1 lemon
1 package of raspberries (or other seasonal berry of choice)
1/4 tsp of cayenne powder (optional and to your liking... be careful!)

Feel the burn!

Monday, April 8, 2013

Be Who You Be - PROUD!

What a great reminder to all of us who are inundated with society's stigmas of body image and beauty!

Radio CFF posted this picture/story on Facebook regarding Swedish manikins.  The premise is that a department store in Sweden displayed size 12 and 16 manikins to showcase their "normal sized" lingerie.  I'll tell you what... those sizes are normal!  For some women, like myself, a size 12 is a GREAT size to be at!  My goal is a 10, but come on... I've worked my buns off to get where I'm at, combining juice, healthy eating and activity.  If maintaining a 10/12 is where I'm supposed to be then dag-nabbit... I'm proud to be ME!

If you ask me, these are beautiful displays of healthy women... I'd kill for "abs" like that!

Friday, April 5, 2013

Four Days = Four Pounds!

Four full days of my clean diet and juice program... and I'm already four pounds down!

I'm a real woman, a real-life mom with a realistic body... so don't judge the mom-pudge... I'm working on it just like all of you!

Initial results?
  1. Was the PERFECT way to get back on track.
  2. I lost four pounds in four days.
  3. I can SEE a difference. Look at my day 2, 3 and 4 pics to the right... note the upper stomach!
  4. Have successfully detoxed from caffeine.
  5. Have slept more soundly than I have in weeks.
  6. I feel more optimistic and positive about my life.
  7. I am more patient and less reactive.
  8. My mood is more even keeled.
Four days and I am turned around!  I would say that the concept of eating cleanly and drinking fresh juice is a great way to break cycles, get back on track or start a path to a "new you!"


Thursday, April 4, 2013

Can I Juice While Breastfeeding...?

YES... YES... and YES! 
Of course I have to say to check with your healthcare professional before veering from your normal routine... but the short answer is YES!

First off it is critical to remember that juicing for breastfeeding (or pregnancy for that matter) is NOT a replacement for meals.  Juicing is to enhance your health and to offer a way of easily absorbing and processing nutrients.  You should not be focused on weight-loss.  What you should be focused on is the health of your growing baby and your overall health and well-being.

Why is juicing good for a new momma?

Juicing offers up a way of basically "injecting" micro-nutrients and active enzymes straight into your system.  Juicing removes the need for your body to digest and process and therefore saves it's energy for you and your baby.  This "hit" of minerals and vitamins effect you at a molecular level, thus changing your body from the inside out.  

This will not only provide impeccable care to you and your baby, it will set you up for greater weight loss success once you are done breastfeeding!  

Some techniques to note while juicing while breastfeeding:

  1. Incorporate teas into your regimen or mix with fresh juice
  2. Add herbal tinctures into the mix
  3. Use organic produce as toxins can negatively affect your growing baby
  4. You should be drinking at least one large glass of water to every serving of juice on top of your normal hydration routine
  5. Stay away from heavy stimulants like black tea and coffee (a little dark chocolate is OK!)
Here are some herbs to consider in either tea or tincture form:
  • Lemon balm
  • Nettle
  • Red raspberry leaf
  • Rose hips
  • Ginger
Two great juices to reduce bloating is:
  • 2 oranges (peeled)
  • Handful of kale leaves
  • 1/2 cup spinach
  • 3 stalks celery
  • Note: you can add lemon, ginger or apple to taste
  • 3 carrots
  • 3 stalks celery
  • 30 cherries (pitted)
  • 8 oz of red raspberry leaf or nettle tea
  • Note: you can add lemon, ginger or apple to taste
Ingredients to help increase energy!
  • GREENS!  Any green you can stomach, anything leafy!
  • Lemon
  • Ginger
  • Apple
How much should you drink?

Drink as much as you want as long as juicing is not replacing meals.  Pay attention to your body... it will tell you when to speed-up or slow-down.  If juicing just doesn't feel right all together, quit and try again at a later stage.  There is no right or wrong way... but you do need to listen to your body as it will know best for you and your baby!

Be active - Be healthy - Juice!

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

The First Three Days - Think Clean!

I'm on day 3 of an intensive "clean diet" cleanse.  Brian, my brother, came up with the concept and catered the program to fit my lifestyle.  So... I'm trying it out as an option for our program!

Day 3

Last night I went to bed with a killer headache... the kind that pounds and reverberates throughout your whole head, neck and upper back.  I attribute it to the fact that I am cleansing, during extreme weather changes and have completely cut out caffeine and alcohol.  The combination all came together by the end of day two to force me to bed early with a visit to the chiropractor and an ice back on my neck.

I woke up today feeling like a million dollars!  My headache is gone and actually my head is clearer and more alert than it has been in weeks.  I have some before and after pictures that I'll post at the end of the two weeks to show the progress, but within the first three days my jeans are starting to hang off my waste and my stomach is already looking more flat.

So what am I doing?

I'm embracing a "clean diet."  This means that I have cut out most foods that cause inflammation, some key "no-no's" are:

  • Dairy
  • Animal proteins
  • Corn
  • Sand-alone oils
  • Heavy cooking
  • White grains/starches
  • Sweets (white sugar, processed candy, baked goods...)
  • Alcohol
  • Caffeine
Than what am I eating? 
  • Complex grains (brown or wild rice, quinoa and barley)
  • Sweet Potatoes (roasted or steamed with a tiny pinch of sea salt)
  • Fresh vegetables... any kind... as much as I want
  • Fresh fruits... any kind... as much as I want
  • Fresh juice, mainly greens and herbs with apple, lemon and ginger to taste
  • Tea
  • Coconut meat and water
  • Small handfulls of raw nuts (try to stay away from peanuts)
  • Water... lots and lots of WATER
I'm going to keep the updates coming... in the meantime, if you want more information about this cleanse, let me know.  What a great way to be able to show off that flat stomach for summer!

Monday, April 1, 2013

Sweet Potatoes - The Sweet Truth

The dichotomy of the sweet potato.  

On one hand, it was a root that plagued the plates of children growing up.  Mothers forcing the pile of orange mash down millions of children's throats.  Until finally these children grew into adults and found out that with a little salt and brown sugar, these delectable starches were actually... Yummy!  

In ancient times (dating well before the Incan pyramids) sweet potatoes were found to be an important dietary staple.  While the Elizabethan era took things to a whole new level, declaring sweet potatoes as a powerful aphrodisiac and fertility food... let's just say that plates were cleaned by the end of each meal!

When it comes to juicing, the sweet potato couldn't be higher on the list of orange foods for yummy health benefits.  One small sweet potato contains:
  • More beta-carotene than carrots
  • Over 350% of your daily vitamin A requirement
  • High amounts of vitamin C
  • Potassium
  • Calcium
  • Vitamin E
  • Folate
  • Iron 
  • Copper
  • And the list goes on...
This sweet treat also contains two very important phytochemicals, quercetin and chlorgenic acid.  Combined they have tremendous immune boosting qualities, anti-cancer properties and are incredible for improving the skin's complexion.

Plus... sweet potatoes produce a lot of juice.  It makes for a great base for your juicing regimen.  We highly recommend this root during seasonal transition times.  With all of these health benefits it will help with:
  • Seasonal colds
  • Sinus and head congestion
  • Body aches
  • Headaches
  • Joint and muscle pain
  • Fatigue
  • Seasonal depression and lack of motivation
  • Lack of sex drive (didn't see that one coming, did you?!)
To help get you started, try this recipe... Sweet Greens
  • 1 large sweet potato
  • 1/4 pineapple
  • 1 bunch kale
  • 1 handful spinach
So grab a sweet potato on your way through the produce isle and enjoy this sweet treat... guilt free!

Monday, March 25, 2013

But I Want My COFFEE!!!

Oh the dreaded question... "Can I drink coffee while I juice?"  Imagine someone asking me this question while cringing with a desperate glint of hope in their eyes... the hope that I might say, "Yes."

So here is my answer - Yes and No.

To help answer the question more effectively, you need to answer this preliminary question, "Are you juicing or juice cleansing/fasting?"  In my world, juicing is the act of incorporating fresh, alive and active juice into your regular routine.  Juice cleansing/fasting is when you make the short-term commitment to ONLY drink fresh, alive and active juice thus flushing the body and basically "rebooting" your metabolism.  It is the difference between maintaining vs. cleansing/fasting.

My final answer...

  • Juicing = yes you can have coffee in moderation (no "pots" a day!)
  • Juice cleansing/fasting = no you can not have coffee... not even a little bit!

Why would I be so cruel as to take coffee away from "innocent juice cleansers" such as yourself?  The answer is simple... you are trying to cleanse the body of any toxins and agents in that are working against the natural inclinations and health of the body.  Sorry, but caffeine is one of those agents.  So, to reap the full and rapid benefits of a juice cleanse/fast, it is critical to eliminate extraneous substances that would otherwise tax the body and defeat your goal.

See... I'm not so mean after all!  I'm just trying to ensure that whether you are embarking on a lifestyle change such as juicing or are ready to dive into a juice cleanse/fast, that you will achieve maximum results. I want you to be as excited about this as I am!

Friday, March 22, 2013

Nuts for Coconuts!

Some say the sweet smell of coconuts take them to a lounge chair on the beach... piña colada in hand.  Some say it reminds them of the pool on a hot summer day.  Either way, coconut usually sparks a positive nostalgic reaction in most individuals.

The focus for today... Coconut water.

Usually harvested from young, green coconuts, the water can be found at the very center.  Fresh coconut water is different from most store bought coconut drinks for two reasons:
  1. Fresh coconut water contains active enzymes that both repair and detox the body, whereas most store bought products have been pasteurized and/or are from concentrate.  
  2. Fresh coconut water is NOT the same as coconut milk.  Coconut milk is actually the meat of the coconut  finely processed, filtered and mixed with flavors and fillers such as water.  Coconut milk is not bad, it is just different than fresh coconut water.
Fresh coconut water has surprising and fantastic health benefits!  
  • Is extremely hydrating for the body
  • Contains essential minerals and electrolytes (predominately potassium)
  • Helps generate energy within the body and musculature
  • Combats high sodium diets while trying to cleanse
  • Detoxes and repairs tissues within the body
Besides its miraculously health affect on the body, it is naturally sweet and nutty without the added sugar of most juices.  This can make a yummy and beneficial addition to any juicing regimen.  

Personally I like to incorporate it as a "snack filler" to help fill me up and curb hunter.  It works wonders and really does help boost energy and hydration throughout the day.

Now... if only this blog post could bring some "beach weather" our way!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

The "Master?"

Oh the infamous "Master Cleanse."  It has been branded and re-branded by independent juicers and corporations for years... and I mean years!

This so-called "master of all cleanses" was originally created by Stanley Burroughs in the 1940's.  You read that right... 1940's!  He went on to author The Master Cleanse which gave the details regarding the recipe and program to execute.  The ingredients are simple:
  1. Water
  2. Fresh lemon juice
  3. Grade B maple syrup
  4. Cayenne pepper
Users claim that they have been able to lose weight fast.  The results varied across dieters, body types, intake amounts, potency of each juice... etc.  

So... I thought, "I'm in the business of trying juice cleanses, I should probably check this out!"  I did a 2 day "Master Cleanse." 

This is what I found...

The first morning I felt great!  The juice tasted great and it invigorated me to a point where I didn't even want to drink coffee.  By that afternoon, I was feeling a bit light headed and nauseous   Now consider that I am an avid juicer, so I shouldn't be going through any major symptoms as my system is pretty "clean." By that night, I was so hungry I felt like I wanted to down an entire pizza!

I know the drill when trying a new cleanse, so I stuck to the plan, had a big cup of tea before bed and made the commitment to continue on the next day.  I woke up and had a big glass of the "lemonade."  It again, tasted good and was invigorating in the morning.  As the previous day predicted, I saw the same symptoms by the end of the day.

I did lose 2 lbs by the end of the second day, but I felt depleted and had an extreme hunger that I had a hard time satisfying... not a good result if you are looking to lose weight overtime.  

So, what did this tell me? 

This cleanse may allow you to lose weight quick, but it isn't sustaining.  It is not a cleanse you want to do for long periods of time or as your only, regular cleansing agent.  Why?  The simple truth, it doesn't sustain you nutritionally.  It may have all the makings of a fast cleanse, but it doesn't hold up over the long haul.  

My advice?

Give this a go as a morning tonic once in a while or even as a 2-3 day cleanse a couple or few times a year.  Just don't rely on this as a long term solution or as a long term cleanse.  The cleanse just doesn't have enough nutrients to sustain the human body or to create a healthier body.  This cleanse is ONLY for immediate, NOT sustained, weight loss or health. I'm not for or against this approach... I just want my followers to know what this cleanse is "good for" and what it "lacks!"

I'm available if you need help navigating this one... I've witnessed it first hand!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

A Smile...

Wow, the power of a smile! When you catch eyes with someone and their face lights up... Eyes brighten, face opens and finally... An ear to ear grin.

Today I was on my way to the gym, stopped at a stoplight, window down and tunes pumping. 28 degrees F is a relative heat-wave for Wisconsin... Spring is in the air. I was feeling that energy pulsing through my veins, breathing in the freshness, feeling sun warm my bare arms... Divine!

I look over to find "Mr. Orange Coat," I've so dubbed him anyways. I see him walking miles and miles a day, everyday, in all weather. He looks up and gives me a slight head nod and then that smile! As if the smile leapt from his face and gave me a big hug, surrounding me in even more positive energy.

I felt a zing travel to my own smile reflex and blurted out a giggle. If you know me at all, I don't just "giggle," I'm a belly laugher through and through. I look to the car next to me, smiling and laughing. This man couldn't even help himself, he started smiling. Another zing!

I went to the gym and made a stop at the gas station. As I was paying at the pump, I saw the man from the car. He did a double take and then b-lined it at high speed... Towards me!

I pretended to be working with the credit card machine when I heard a laugh. "I just wanted to say, thank you. I woke up in a foul mood this morning... Then I saw this woman, you, laughing to yourself... Well, you made my day." He smiled and then ran off.

Confused, happy and feeling a little vulnerable, I got into my car and thought... I HAVE to share this...

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

For Kids' Sake!

For those who have or influence our younger generations, this post is for you!

Our children are learning from such a young age about how to treat their own bodies.  They are watching their older role models with the eyes of a hawk... taking in every decision and every action we make.  Just the other day I dropped a cup of water on the ground, watching it splash all over the floor I mumbled, "Crap!"  Not even skipping a beat, my 1 1/2 year old daughter mimics, "Crap," and then looks up at me and smiles... parent fail on my part.

I did make a "note-to-self" to keep such words to myself next time, but hey, we are real people with real lives which makes us REAL role models of today's children.  So, I took that experience and I applied my lessons-learned to how I am role modeling my nutrition habits.

We may not be able to control the world's views on health.  Schools, museums, other kids' houses and public areas are notorious for fast, easy and filling foods.  Usually ridden with salt, sugar and empty calories. Of course kids LOVE this kind of food.  It sparks feelings of euphoria as the stimulants hit their sensitive little systems, catapulting them into shock.  Yet, you can't always control this.  Sometimes kids just have to eat and you are the one there to feed them on the spot.

To offset society's lack of health-sense (though I have to say things are getting better... just not there yet), it is important that WE as role models are providing consistent and adequate nutrition.  So, why not try introducing juice into their diet!  The kids are seeing you do it, so why not let them try it?

Kids love the entire process:

  1. Shopping for or growing the fresh produce
  2. Washing and preparing the fruits and vegetables... even taking a taste before the juicing begins
  3. Learning to run the juicer, listening to the sounds and watching the juice fill up the pitcher
  4. Finally... drinking and enjoying!
Kids feel pride in this type of approach.  Give them some credit!  Kids are usually smart and engaging, they will most likely surprise you with how much they've learned and retained.

Another point is that you can do almost anything with the juice to get them to intake:
  1. Try to make it with more fruit or sweet vegetables while "hiding" the bitter or bland vegetables   It will be more palatable for them.  You want them to have good experiences so they keep drinking it!
  2. Get fun jars and/or cups for them to drink out of.
  3. Try freezing them into ice cubes with Popsicle sticks.  You have healthy, frozen treats ready to go!
  4. Try mixing whole berries or fruit in the cup of juice.  Kids love surprises and seeing mysterious things floating around in their drinks.
  5. Have their friends over to experience and love it together.
  6. Show by example.  It is important that you are "walking your talk" by drinking your juice too!
Some things to be aware of when introducing juice into children's diets:
  1. Dilute juice at first until their system and taste buds acclimate.
  2. Cup feed, do NOT bottle feed.  The sugars and acids may erode the backs of the front teeth over time with a bottle feeding method.
  3. Moderation... don't overload a child's system.
  4. Juicing should be "in addition to" and not "in place of" a nutritious, whole-food diet.
  5. Always consult a primary physician or health care professional with questions.
The idea, is that you want to get nutrition-packed food into kids' systems so that their bodies recognize what true health is.  They can then better combat the ebbs and flows of society's health views and stay true to those they know are true and good for them.  

So get on out there and start juicing for kids' sake!

Monday, March 11, 2013

Toxic Overload!

When you finally make a decision to become healthy, to rid your body of toxins and begin a diet and exercise regimen that works for you, you are actually breaking old habits.  When you decide to juice, you are shaking your previous routine to the core!

In these initial stages, you are actually "fighting" with the poor habits that your body has grown to expect.  Anytime there is conflict within the body, there will be initial consequences before things get better.

How it works inside your body...

Your liver, adrenal glands and other vital organs were designed to cleanse the body and create the balance needed for overall functionality and health.  Yet these organs do have limits.  Just like the air filter on your car... everything needs to be cleaned.

What then happens, when these systems are overloaded, is that they start to "reject" toxins to other tissues.  Basically saying, "We are at full capacity, can you take this?"  The surrounding tissues, namely fat cells, have no choice but to absorb the toxic overflow and hang onto it for as long as the tissues and cells are functioning.  You essentially have a backlog of toxins just building up... slowly taking over your cells and organs and thus clogging your body.

This is exactly what causes symptoms such as:

  • Lethargy
  • Constant feeling of sickness in stomach
  • Headaches
  • Excess weight gain
  • Joint pain
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Mood swings
  • Digestive issues
  • Acne
  • And the list goes on...

Since our cleansing organs and functional systems do not allow us to "remove and replace" them, like a car filter, we have to take the approach of cleansing them and then allowing them to regenerate.  This means:

  1. Slowing the intake of toxins to an acceptable level, range and frequency.
  2. Giving these systems a break so that they can "self clean" and rejuvenate their own tissues.
The initial affects of such action may cause a slight increase in the above symptoms... meaning you will actually feel WORSE before you feel BETTER.  I know we've all heard that saying before, yet it rings true even in health and wellness.  When you shock your body into making this drastic and much-needed positive change, your body will rebel and you will probably feel "sick."  

This is OK and normal.  You are burning off and releasing toxins that your body has held onto for a long time.  Your body is finally having the capacity to break them down, process them and finally rid them through your immune and digestive systems.  

So... if you are just starting a major health shift in your life, take on the challenge!  Know that this is going to be a side affect and push on through.  It is temporary!  Here are some tips to help make this transition easier:
  1. Drink excess amounts of water
  2. Sweat it out - exercise
  3. Juice - juice according to your plan and don't let up
  4. Cut out the toxic intake - remove alcohol, caffeine, excess sugar, fats and oils... until your body is back on track
  5. Rest - rest - rest
Remember, your body is taking on a huge shift in it's normal routine.  Give yourself and your body a break and allow yourself to finally deal with and flush these toxic invaders.  You owe it to yourself to see this through... see through to the "New You!"

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Just As A Horse...

"Just as a horse will manufacture all the protein it needs for it's strong musculature from greens, so too will a human." ~Natalia Rose (Author of "The Raw Food Detox Diet")

This phrase has gotten a lot of hype on blog and discussion postings.  Raw food fanatics are raving about it's truths and the all-American meat and potato eaters are claiming it is made-up and false.  There are arguments both ways and in reality it is a statement that works to support how a body's metabolism and chemistry actually manufacture protein and nutrients from the very foods and liquids we intake.  

What a concept!

Plant-based proteins do in fact exist.  Examples are:
  • Asparagus
  • Dark greens (Beet greens, broccoli, collard, kale, mustard, spinach, chard, turnip greens)
  • Cabbage
  • Cauliflower
  • Sprouts
  • Tomatoes
  • The list goes on...
A well rounded routine means that you must determine what works for you!  Each body is different.  Each body vibrates at a different frequency.  Each body requires it's own unique balance of energy, nutrients and exercise.  There is no magic formula to fit all.  

It is VITAL that we remove stigmas and false, blanket statements about health.  Wipe the slate clean and start doing your own research.  You will be amazed at what you find rings true for you.

One example is that last year I tried a high protein powder diet.  The idea was to match my body weight with 1 gram of protein each day.  What ended up happening is that I would fill up on any type of protein imaginable (powder, nuts, cheese, meat...) until I was too full to eat anything fresh.  My body was so dense and my system felt so "heavy."  My mood was gloomy and I felt "off."  After two months I had not lost a pound.  In fact I had gained 5 pounds.  This program was obviously not for me! 

So... I found a different way to get protein on a regular basis.  One that worked with my body.

For me, juicing became "the way."  I found that juicing made me feel light, happy, energetic and more aware. I started thinking more clearly, sleeping regularly and am now able to focus on the important parts of my life.  

Based on results, my body is in-fact able to manufacture the nutrients (including protein) it needs based on what I intake.  The form from which it comes is obsolete... because it works for me!

What works for you?

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Plateau Obliteration - What Worked

After 5 days of obliterating the infamous "plateau" of weight loss and progress, I figured out what worked and what didn't.  The overall theme was that I needed to tighten the reigns on my own habits.

I found that one of the key reasons I was in this rut was due to me giving myself too much leeway later in the day.  My self-created juicing maintenance plan is juice for breakfast, lunch and snack with a handful of raw nuts or a cup of almond or rice milk.  I also allowed myself raw fruits and vegetables but they are harder to come by during the workday, so juicing made it very easy and simple to maintain.

The evenings is where I began to give myself too much slack.  My motto was that if I was maintaining, then I could eat whatever I wanted at night.  After months of this regimen, I began to see more salty, cheesy and bready items creep their way onto my plate.  I have a toddler so our evenings are about quick meals and convenience.  Unfortunately, over time, this equals unhealthy eating habits.

In the end, I found the following to help me successfully break through the plateau!

  1. Get your attitude straight.  Having a "can-do" attitude with positive self-talk and optimistic views lightens your body, your mood and your energy.  By turning my attitude around, I was able to do more and was able to attract the things I needed to be successful.
  2. Kitchen clean-out.  I took an evening and gave away the chips, the breads, pastas, the cheeses, the dips, the chocolate... you get the idea.  It's not that I can't have any of these things.  But during times like this, I needed to remove all temptation and get back on track.
  3. Stock the fridge.  I then went to our local health-food coop and stocked up on alive food.  I stuck to produce and simple grains only (I like rice and quinoa).  I got fresh herbs and citrus to flavor.  If you have good things on hand, you are less likely to veer from the path.
  4. Make juice ahead of time.  I started making some juices with coconut, honey and almond milk just to have on hand.  These flavors really added a depth to my routine and allowed for a sweet treat later in the evening when I was craving more hearty snacks.
  5. Change up the routine.  I needed to desperately add some diversity into my activity routine.  So I decided to switch up my cardio and do some of my old-favorite resistance exercises.  Plus I added in some free-weights just to push myself a bit farther.  AMAZING results.  I could feel my muscles reacting within the first three days.
What didn't work?
  1. Making excuses.  I had to constantly convince myself that what I had been doing was not going to get me to the next level.  Being tired and unmotivated was not an option.  My internal voice kept battling this obvious statement, but in the end... I won!
  2. Not getting enough rest.  I had a sick kid and my mind kept racing with work related issues.  This was not helping me break through my plateau.  It actually had the opposite affect and resulted in bloating and general fatigue.  To stop this cycle, I started drops of Rescue Remedy and then introduced an earlier wind down routine with my daughter.  I would then do some light stretching and deep breathing right before snuggling in for the night.
  3. Saying "Yes" all the time.  I am notorious for saying "Yes" to everyone.  Yet, when I am working on healing myself, I needed to draw some boundaries and simply decline invitations that were self-sabotaging or pushing me past a healthy point.  Sometimes you just need to do what you need to do... no excuses!
After five days, I am back on track.  I lost 2 lbs to get me back to where I needed to be and I am feeling lighter, thinner and less bloated.  I still have some work to do and the daily grind doesn't always help.  But... That is exactly why I juice!  Because it is an easy way to progress to a healthy weight and overall lifestyle.  Without juicing, I would be 30 lbs heavier and still dreaming about what it would be like to be "back in those jeans."  

By the way... I'm wearing those jeans right now!

Friday, March 1, 2013

End of Winter Slump

I am looking outside at a sea of half-melted snow, salt covered cars and a cold wind that looks to rip these poor, barren trees right from their roots.  I'm looking at the "end of winter slump."  The time of year when you are watching the days tick off of your calendar, waiting for that first Robin to return, for the first crocus to pop through the snow and for that first sign that the sun is actually warming the earth!

It's the end of a very long week full of hard work and change.  The rigor of life has really taken it's toll this week and I am looking forward to a weekend of rest and recovery.  In doing so, I thought I'd share a great day brightening recipe.  Time to lift the spirits and power through the last weeks of winter!

Hey, if the sun isn't going to stay out... why not bring it out!  Happy Friday juicing everyone!

Day Bright
1 peeled grapefruit
1 peeled orange
1/4 pineapple
1/4 c fresh coconut juice
1 yam
1 apple
1/4 in ginger
(if you are adventurous... try a dash of cayenne chili powder!)

Monday, February 25, 2013

Plateau Obliteration – Day Three!

When “obliterating a plateau” it’s hard to stay motivated.  Progress isn't as fast, my internal engine has slowed down to accommodate for the pace it wants to follow and it is just plain hard work.

Day three is always the day that I seem to hit my slump.  Today I left the gym feeling tired and sore and a little bloated from the weekend.  The scale has not moved an inch and this is about the time when I start to feel a bit defeated.

Time for a little self-talk and some motivation boosting!  Luckily, I have been here before and I know how to push through. 

Step 1:  Stick to the plan.  Make sure that you are juicing each day in accordance with the plan you've created for yourself.  
  • For my “plateau obliteration plan” I am making a commitment to incorporate no more than 25% fruit juice into my routine.  This forces me to seek vegetable alternatives which add less sugar and less calories.

Step 2:  Increase intensity and duration.  For your movement or exercise routine, it’s time to pick up the pace and increase intensity and duration.  That means you want to increase your heart-rate for a longer period of time.  
  • My current goal during this time is to increase my cardio to 30 min instead of 20 at an intensity of 6-7 vs. my previous 5.  I’m sweating bullets!

Step 3:  Check the negative attitude.  This is about the time when I start the negative talk in my head, “I’m just too tired… I am not making any headway… there’s no point, I might as well take the day off… I think I’m looking fatter… this is just too hard… I've made a lot of progress recently, I don’t’ need to work that hard.”  Do any of these sound familiar?  These are the types of negative thoughts that work against you and against your best interest.  
  • I, personally, “fake it till I make it.”  I start talking to myself in the exact opposite manner, reversing those statements.  Even though I don’t quite believe them at first, I keep going until I start to feel the lift in my spirit.

Step 4:  Take a step back.  Look at how far you've already come!  What a feat!  Whether it’s weight loss, better health, more energy… take a moment to recognize and build yourself up for the progress you've already made.  Remember what it felt like to start your new juicing routine.  Remember how hard that first week was.  Now look at the positive progress!  
  • I figure... I've already made it through the first phase... nothing is going to stop me from making it through the next!  I deserve this... and I can't wait to look back and remember what this phase was like.

Try this extra green recipe to kick-start your system!

Uber Green (just chug it)
½ bunch kale
½ bunch rainbow chard
1 large bag of spinach
½ cucumber
½in ginger root
¼ lemon
1 apple

Friday, February 22, 2013

Plateau Obliteration - Day One!

So I am the kind of person who hits the ground running.  Once I have analyzed the situation and made my decision... I'm doing it!  Day one of my "Plateau Obliteration Plan"... Change my workout routine!

With that said, I brushed off the dust on my cross trainers yesterday.  I threw a fresh pair of workout clothes in the back of my car and got myself to the gym.  As I walked into the free-weight section, the smell of rubber and the clanking of weights brought back a nostalgic excitement that I had long forgot.

Eight pairs of eyes perked up as I strolled down the middle of "their territory."  You see, I belong to a no-name, hole-in-the-wall, local gym.  I joined by choice, as I like the simplicity of the place, the focus of the atmosphere and their genuine support and demeanor   No pressure and usually no eyes staring at you while you work out (one of my pet-peeves... getting hit on at the gym... a story for another time perhaps).

This time, however, the gym seemed "packed" and of course, they were all... men.

In these situations, I usually lift my head a little higher and stroll a little more confidently than usual.  Just to offset the fact that I felt completely vulnerable and out of place in my purple tank-top.  I took a deep breath and reminded myself, "You have been here before, you are just fine and in a couple days, this will feel completely normal."

My hand knew what to reach for... a 20 pound dumbbell.  I slowly brought it to my side and started a whole new core workout.

Moral of my story... even though I am not speaking directly to juice today... it is just as important to focus on the entire well-being of your body during this transition.  Your muscles and joints were built to be challenge and to move.  Your body was made to adapt and change.  That is why changing up your workout or movement routine is so important.  If you let your body become too complacent, you will get results to match... stagnation.

So why not grab a big glass of juiced greens, your cross trainers and head to the gym!  Try these moves to help "break the ice."  I have to admit... I am a HUGE Jillian Michaels fan... so do what you can and alter the workouts to your experience/performance level.  Just be prepared to "feel it" the next day!

Jillian Michaels - 20 minute workout -

Note that by changing any workout routine, you should be cognizant of your current physical health and should determine if you need to consult a medical professional.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

The Infamous "Plateau"

Oh that dreaded moment when you step on the scale and it hasn't moved... in fact it has gone up by one pound!

I know that feeling well.  It is known as the "plateau" of weight-loss.  The moment when you realize that what you've been doing will only take you this far.  The moment you realize that something needs to change in order for the forward moving trend to continue.

Let's put this in terms of a workout.  When you go to the gym, diligently, three times a week... incorporating the right mix of cardio, weights, resistance and stretching.  You're feeling good, the endorphins are flowing, the weight is starting to come off and your pants are fitting just a little looser.  You go through the same routine for a couple months and continue to see improvement!

The start of the next month rolls around and you notice that the workouts are easier and that your body is not reacting as much... it is used to the routine and the effort needed.  Your body has become "bored" with the workout and therefore has realized that it doesn't need to exert more effort... so it doesn't!  Your body basically sits back and says, "Ha!  That's a piece of cake... I'm sitting this one out at half effort."

This is the start of the "plateau."

Let's get back to juicing... This same "plateau" can happen when you are on a juicing regimen.  For instance, I noticed that lately, I've been falling into a routine of drinking the same juice in the morning and the same routine of bike cardio at the gym with stretching afterwards.

This routine is what helped me lose 30 pounds!  A fantastic feat that I am very proud of.  Yet now, this routine is not enough to take me past that 30 pound marker.  I have 15 pounds to my goal weight and I am stuck... staring at the scale... feeling a bit defeated.

You know what?  It's time for change... that is what this experience is telling me!  Over the next week I will be researching, posting and coming up with some plateau boosting juice recipes and regimens to help guide myself and you through this phase of the process.

The most important thing is to not get caught up in the halt in your progress.  Recognize how far you have come.  Be proud of the hard work you have put in thus far.  Own and celebrate the positive results you've already accomplished!  If you are just beginning, know that these results are waiting for you!

Reaching your "plateau" is actually a good thing (I know, I'm an eternal optimist)... it indicates that you have passed the first phase and are ready for the next step in juicing!

Monday, February 18, 2013

The Business Travel Approach

Being a working mom who travels quite a bit, I am constantly plagued with opportunities to veer from my juicing path.

When I was newer to the regimen, I would find myself running to my airport gate, grabbing anything with bread, meat and cheese and then eating it ravenously at 35,000 feet.  What I realized was that the affects of travel alone have adverse affects on the body.  When combined with poor eating and stress, I was doomed to gain weight, feel bloated and feel drained.

So... what changed?

I found a way to maintain while I traveled!  I realized that I was not going to be able to make much progress while traveling, especially on those trips longer than two days.  What I was willing to face, and eventually accept, was that maintaining weight and health is sometimes just as effective when trying times emerge.

Once I was able to wrap my head around the concept of maintenance, I could then let go of the guilt and stress that I felt and really focus on the trip I needed to take.

My true secret though is putting in a little research ahead of time.  I found that if I mapped out an organic health food store... ahead of time... I could then find fresh juice and produce that fit into my juicing regimen.

Try this approach next time you have business travel!

  1. Pack your food for the trip out.  You won't be able to pack juice, so pack fresh fruits, vegetables and raw nuts.  This will prevent the last minute junk-food buys.  
  2. Buy or refill a LARGE container of water and drink it constantly.  Yes it may cause you to have to get up a couple times on the plane, but it is well worth the hydration and satisfied feeling that comes with it.
  3. Do your research and find an organic health food store that is either near or on-the-way to your hotel/residence.  Stock up on fresh fruits, vegetables and raw nuts.  Also, if available, find fresh juice that you can buy in bulk.  Note: some hotels offer complimentary refrigerators... just ask, or build this into your travel budget.
  4. Stick to the basics if you have to go out and eat.  Remember to keep things fresh and simple.  The less cooking means the less sauce, the less heavy food and the closer you are to key nutrients.  Example: Choose the seared ahi tuna and quinoa instead of the breaded chicken sandwich or the steak and garlic mashed potatoes.  Note: another trick I like is to order your food in smaller orders, example I have the server bring me a small salad, then soup and then a side order of their vegetables .. by the end of it I am stuffed!
  5. Sleep and Move... get your butt to bed and get up 30 minutes earlier the next morning to take a walk or simply stretch before your meetings.
  6. Do a 1-3 day juice cleanse when you get home.
I feel like I'm an avid "traveling juicer" now and it feels amazing to be able to embrace a lifestyle that fosters health.

Happy travels!