Detox for Spring the Whole Foods Way

With each season, our bodies start to adjust to the world around us. As it becomes winter, we naturally begin to crave the heavier and more comforting foods that are in season such as grounding root veggies and warming spices like cardamom and nutmeg. We also switch our iced beverages to steaming mugs of our favorite drinks and just naturally settle down into a slower pace as the days become shorter and darker. This seasonal change can even put a little extra weight on our frames as our bodies prepare for freezing temperatures that in the past, have left food scarce.

Likewise, in the spring, our bodies also begin to naturally adjust to the longer days and warmer weather by shedding the extra weight of winter, by picking up the pace and by craving lighter, more energizing fare. Luckily, Mother Nature provides everything we need to support this natural transition between the seasons by providing foods that will help us combat the effects of pollen, that will clear congestion and help improve our circulation so we can keep up with the extra "spring" in our step that comes along with this new season. Find that, and more, in today's blog post.

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The LTB Report. New Years with Nila.

Happy Friday! January sure is flying by, but before it goes, I have a fun interview with one of the most beautiful people I know, both inside and out, Mrs. Nila Grier. I was lucky to meet this beaming ray of light at Pure Barre as she became a regular in my classes. While these days, we don't get to LTB together much, I often run into her coming in and out of Clean Juice or picking up the best vegan cookies at Whole Foods. Of course, in true Nila fashion, she always has a smile beaming across her face and a big hug ready no matter how busy she is. And that she certainly is! Being step-mom to internet sensations {to say the very least!} Nash and Hayes Grier and college football cutie Will Grier, really keeps her on her toes as she regularly jet-sets back and forth to the west coast. Yet, she remains completely unchanged by the fame. Even with a stout following on Instagram, Nila remains authentic and an incredible role model for all of her impressionable young followers. She's definitely someone to look to for inspiration. This girl lives balance... while eating right and exercising are important to her, she also makes sure to live a little and enjoy every second of this sweet life. Everyone, meet Nila.

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The Flat Belly Five and Sample 1 Day Raw Menu

So, I'll just get straight to the point. If Thanksgiving {numbers 1, 2 & 3 plus "Friends-giving" & leftovers central} has you feeling more stuffed than your t{of}urkey then follow these tips to debloat, reenergize and make sure you'll still fit into all those cute skinnies you bought on Black Friday. And small business Saturday.... and cyber Monday... 

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{Guest Post} The Ugly Side of Beauty

Lead in lipstick? 1,4 dioxane in baby soap? Coal tar in shampoo? How is this possible?
Simple. The $35 billion cosmetics industry is so powerful that they've kept themselves unregulated for decades. Not one cosmetic product has to be approved by the US Food and Drug Administration before hitting the market. Incredible? Consider this: 

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Paint Your Plate Orange? for Breast Cancer

By now, we all know that pink is the official color for breast cancer awareness. From pretty pink packaging, wearing pink on Thursdays to your local Pure Barre studio and pink ribbons decorating the entire month of October, it seems natural to eat pink too -- no pink skittles do NOT count! -- to help guard your body against the disease that affects nearly 1 in 8 women in the United States alone. While rose-hued strawberries, raspberries and grapefruit are healthy additions to any diet, evidence supports that orange is where it's at... in regards to breast cancer prevention. Time for pink-ribboned pumpkins, perhaps?

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The Case for Smoothie Bowls and Why I Hate the "D" Word

Hi friends!! Happy Friday! SO excited to finally get to jot down a blog post this week. Summer vacation has been brutal. Besides the heat firing up our Pitta dosha {more on this to come!}, having two kiddos at home both wanting to do things with me leaves not much down time and lots more "always on" time. "Sorry 3pm date with chocolate and tea, it looks like we're going to have to reschedule. Again." But, I am absolutely LOVING getting to spend time with them making sweet summertime memories... despite all the crazy! But, today is a "two-fer" Friday... I'm going to chat about smoothie bowls and the harmful, no good, very bad, "D" word. 

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To Juice or Not To Juice?

Ok, I'm going to be totally honest with you. For a long time {a very loooooooooong time} I thought juicing was pointless. To me, it was simply an acceptable way for celebrities and models to starve themselves and get away with it. I thought it was a reason to overcharge for a fiberless, sugar-laden, albeit all-natural, drink that Americans would be fooled into believing they needed to be healthy when in reality drinking these juices was causing blood sugar crashes and more intense cravings thus contributing to the obesity epidemic. The only time I thought it made sense to juice was if and when it was being used to give the digestive system a break so more energy could be focused on healing in the event of cancer or another taxing, life-threatening illness. And then, I thought it was only beneficial if the juices were all green and fructose free. Boy, was I way off base. 

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Getting to the Heart of Chakras

Sometimes when the modern world leaves me feeling less than and a bit undone, I turn to the traditional world. Specifically, I turn to yoga, to Ayurvedic wisdom and ultimately, to myself. Believe you me, I am no expert in this ancient science. I am no expert in yoga. And certainly no expert at life. I turn to these things because they provide comfort... a safe place from the storm that sometimes stirs up inside of me. Maybe you can relate?

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Probiotics and Why You Need the Little Buggers {Like Yesterday}

You probably already know that your body is home to bacteria, both beneficial and not so much. And most of these little creepy guys live in your digestive tract to help things break down and keep them *ahem* moving along. You probably only think of probiotics {meaning "for life"} when you've taken a round of antibiotics and maybe not even then. The thing is, your body constantly needs the bacteria in your gut to be replenished and kept happy due to the daily stresses of our modern world, including flack from your boss, processed foods and environmental toxins. And I'm not talking eat a yogurt and you're done. Nope, it takes a bit more thought than that, but it's so worth it. A happy belly is the key to having a flat belly, more energy, glowing skin and an optimistic disposition. 

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Storing Fat and Feeling Lazy? Here's the Culprit.

Fructose. This simple sugar naturally found in fruits and added for sweetness to many packaged and overly-processed foods {think bread, ketchup, soda} is getting a bad wrap according to findings from a recent study out of the University of Illinois. It appears that fructose, not glucose, not only causes weight gain, but consumption may also lead to inactivity. Talk about a double whammy for your waistline. 

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Silencing Your Inner Mean Girl and 9 mos Postpartum Update

Today is Emma's 9 month birthday! That means it's been 9 whole months since my body gave birth to that beautiful little human. What an amazing journey that's been! Watching my baby bump grow little by little and sometimes, seemingly over night by a lot! Then giving birth. And wow, not recognizing my new body in the mirror. Wondering if it would ever resemble something like the one I worked so hard to achieve before. Dealing with healing and around-the-clock care for a newborn. Then, slowly walking more and more everyday. Walking turning into running. Then tucking, shaking, pulsing, planking, dancing. Becoming stronger and stronger while my body slowly started resembling the one I once knew.

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Rethink Your Comfort Foods to Beat Stress

Food isn't just food. It isn't simply a scientific blend of calories, carbs, fats and protein all tied up in a pretty little package. It's not just fuel for our body and we don't only eat when we are hungry. While some people do have the discipline to eat purely to fuel their bodies, I'm not talking about them... I'm talking about you and me, who turn to food for comfort and to feed our emotions as well as our souls. Bad day at work? Hello Ben&Jerry's. Boyfriend dump you? That bastard. Now, here have a triple fudge ooey-gooey brownie. Your pants won't button anymore? You can diet after you finish this big, glorious bowl of macaroni and cheese. Sounds familiar, right? Or maybe you're wrought with worry and don't want to eat anything at all which is just as much a detriment to your health as overeating. So what do you do? Easy... find comfort and the grounded feeling you're after in your favorites, made over. 

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Buzzkill: Why Bee Pollen Should Be Left For The Bees.

Bee pollen, also known as propolis, is garnering a lot of attention in the superfood world. Dubbed "Nature's Perfect Food" and "Energy in a Spoon" by the raw food and holistic health experts, it's easy to see how those tiny, golden granules have become so seductive to those looking to natural stimulants to keep up with the hustle and bustle of the modern-day lifestyle. In fact, I, until very recently, was a big fan of bee pollen. I listened to advice from my favorite bloggers and health gurus like Kimberly Snyder, CN, author and nutritionist to some of Hollywood's hottest A-list stars and purchased propolis from a local beekeeper that harvests the protein and B vitamin rich granules responsibly. I understood to start slow in case of allergic reaction, but since I am not allergic to bees nor do I suffer seasonal allergies, I knew I'd be fine. And I was. I polished off a big bottle of the sunshine-y pollen with no problem. The problem began when I bought a new mason jar of pollen from a different local beekeeper. I took my "energy in a spoon" {1 tsp bee pollen with a drizzle of raw coconut oil} and my throat began to close up.

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The Pure Barre Pure Madness March 20 in 31 Challenge. Done.

April 1st. I thought I'd sleep in. Tucked cozy and tight in my big, fluffy bed waiting until my 8 mos old alarm sounded urging me awake. Instead, my Fitbit reminded me of my self-inflicted 4am wake up call so I can fit a bit of "me time" in my jam-packed days. Thinking of turning the pesky vibrating alarm off and rolling over to fall back into some much needed sleep, a little voice inside nudged me to get up, feed baby girl, put on my space dyes and sticky socks and make my way to the studio for 55 minutes of the day that is mine and mine alone. Pure Madness might have ended but for my newfound motivation, it was only the beginning.

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Eat Your Way To Beautiful, Shiny Hair

Taking your hair from damaged and dull to bouncy and bombshell is as easy as lifting your fork to your mouth. Strong, healthy hair has needs beyond what you find in your shampoo bottle. In fact, your mane needs serious hydration, minerals and protein to look its very best. Luckily for you and your veggie heavy March challenge, these nutrients are in abundance in a plant-based, veggie heavy diet. Read on to see how pretty hair never tasted so good...

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Heal, Detoxify and Nourish With These Potent Veggies

"Under the sea, under the sea. Darling it's better down where it's wetter, take it from me!" ~Sebastian, The Little Mermaid

Sebastian is one smart little crab. Things really are better under the sea, at least when you’re talking veggies! Soaking up the mineral rich sea like little green sponges, seaweed offers a concentrated dose of vitamins and minerals to energize and heal your body like no other. Giving just the superfood fix of cell-loving goodness our over-caffeinated, chaotic and stressed out lifestyle craves, sea vegetables can easily be added into our everyday diet. Keep reading for ways to incorporate these delicious veggies of the sea into your next meal...

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That's A Wrap!

Need an easier way to eat your veggies? One that is so easy, you won't even realize you're eating more veggies? One that can be incorporated seamlessly into breakfast, lunch and dinner? One word for you: Wrap. Everything tastes better in a wrap. Wraps are bread's cooler, better looking, out of town brother with a sexy accent. They just make things more fun. And it doesn't matter what veggies you pile in them, they're going to taste fantastic. Throw some mixed greens, sprouts, cucumbers, roasted red peppers, a little hummus or sesame tahini sauce and maybe some {responsibly raised} grilled chicken and bam! Tastebud overload. Holy deliciousness. I think I just died and went to wrap heaven.

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LTB "Soothie"

If you feel anything like I'm feeling, this Pure Madness Challenge has you a bit sore. All over. So instead of reaching for the Tylenol {simply because it's too painful to reach my arm that high after all the bend stretch lift hold torture!}, let's take a few steps to the kitchen and gather some of nature's most powerful anti-inflammatories to ease the pain while our muscles transform into the long, lean, sculpted machines they're destined to be. 

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Do You Really Need to Eat Organic? Plus 3 Money-Saving Tips.

Organic is so trendy. You hear that word everywhere and see it as you shop for groceries and its even creeping up in restaurant menus. All for good reason too, organic is simply better for you. Better for your family. Better for the world. But, it's also more expensive.

 

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