A sinusitis Cure…and a new healthy find!

About a month ago I had a terrible sinus infection. I tried to power through with rest and extra vitamins but I just couldn’t get rid of it! One of the worst parts about sinusitis is the dizziness. I couldn’t train my clients, couldn’t work out, couldn’t focus, and could barely stand without falling over. I finally went to the doc. He diagnosed me with sinusitis and sent me on my way with prescriptions for antibiotics and anti-dizzy medication. I put the slips aside and searched online for some natural sinusitis remedies.

Most recommendations included healthy diet and exercise…check and check. The other two I found were grapefruit seed extract and this apple cider vinegar drink. Grapefruit seed extract is an all natural anti-biotic with no adverse side effects! Apple cider vinegar drink combines 1-2 tbsp of raw unfiltered apple cider vinegar, 1 tbsp raw organic honey, and a few dashes of cayenne pepper. This drink helps to clear sinus cavities, promote energy, and fight infections. The taste is okay and the smell is quite horrible but it truly does help. After taking the grapefruit seed extract and apple cider drink three times a day I was back to normal in a few days!

The must have for your medicine cabinet!

The must have for your medicine cabinet!

I now include the grapefruit seed extract and the apple cider vinegar drink in my daily routine! I used to have a terrible immune system and was sick all the time but since including these in my daily routine I have felt great! And as soon as I don’t I increase my dosage of both!

Update your medicine cabinet today!

 

The Fried Egg Sandwich!

mmmm….nothing I love more than a juicy sandwich :). When I first went gluten free I thought I may never be able to enjoy one of these again :(. I tried a variety of gluten free breads and most were solid as a brick and very crumbly. A juicy sandwich on this bread soon turned into a fork and knife ordeal…most definitely not my definition of a sandwich! And then I found Udi…Udi’s Whole Grain Gluten Free bread is by far my favorite, it just MUST be toasted first! With Udi my sandwich dreams have now become a reality!

In desperate need of a quick and healthy dinner one night I stumbled upon this delicious sandwich idea. The first time I had a fried egg sandwich was in college up at my girlfriend’s cabin…it was after a night of way too much Jose and not nearly enough agua. 😉 This sandwich by far saved my flipping stomach. From that moment the fried egg sandwich and I became the best of friends :).

This healthy juicy-ness is also super easy! Try it for dinner tonight or even breakfast in the AM!

Ingredients (serves 2):

  • 1 shallot, diced
  • 2 tbsp grapeseed oil
  • 1 tbsp basil
  • 1 tbsp garlic
  • 1 c mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 red bell pepper, sliced into spears
  • 3 c spinach
  • 2 tsp white balsamic vinegar
  • 2-4 eggs (depending on how many eggs per sandwich you would like; I stick with 1 for, 2 for Anthony)
  • 4 sliced Udi’s Gluten Free Whole Grain bread
  • 2 tbsp crumbled goat cheese
  • 4 basil leaves
  • 2 tsp spicy brown mustard

Directions:

  1. In a large skillet bring 1 tbsp grapeseed oil, basil, and garlic to medium heat. Add diced shallot. Mix and cook until shallot has softened, about 3-5 minutes.IMG_5494
  2. Mix in mushrooms and bell pepper. Cook for another 3-5 minutes until mushrooms and peppers have begun to soften, stirring thoroughly. IMG_5495
  3. Add in spinach. Cover and cook 3-5 minutes until spinach has begun to wilt. Once spinach has begun to wilt, uncover and add white balsamic vinegar. Allow the vinegar to steam off. Leaving veggies with a hint of sweetness! (about 2 minutes) Remove veggies from fry pan and place in a Tupperware, close to keep hot. IMG_5497
  4. Coat the fry pan with remaining grapeseed oil. Crack eggs into the pan (leaving enough room so that they do not leak into one another). This is also a great time to start your toast! Once eggs have begun to bubble, break the yoke with a spatula and then flip the egg. Cook egg thoroughly until it is as stable as a pancake 🙂 and can be easily removed from the pan.
  5. Once toast as popped spread one piece with brown mustard. Place egg (or 2 eggs) on this piece, top with fresh basil leaves and goat cheese. Place veggies on other slice of bread. Quick smash the two together and you have deliciousness!IMG_5504

Simple. Juicy. Delicious. Healthy.

Tapia Farms…Shop Local

Shop local and support small businesses! Get out of the UV lit grocery stores and chat with some real farmers in the glorious sunshine. Tapia Farms 012

Tapia Farms is such a gem, one of the few family owned farms still around. This unique find is conveniently located only a few miles away from my home in Lake Balboa, at 5251 Hayvenhurst Avenue in Encino. There is something so refreshing about seeing where your food is grown.Tapia Farms 014Tapia Farms 016

Tapia Farms is so much more than a farm to me, it’s home of Harry the red-head rooster! I’m not sure if his real name is actually Harry, but if it isn’t it really should be! Harry is just one example of how special this place is!Tapia Farms 018

After my visit with Harry I love grabbing one of their big baskets and filling it with their seasonal fruits and vegetables “seasonal”…some Californian’s don’t really get this term. We are so spoiled with grocery stores offering all varieties of fruits and veggies all the time but things just don’t grow like that! Shopping seasonally cuts down the cost of transportation (which is best for our environment) and allows for a variety of cooking experiments all year long!Tapia Farms 020Tapia Farms 021

The staff at Tapia are truly passionate about what they do and, man do they know their food! When you stop in, ask for cooking suggestions and, trust me, they can point you in the right direction.Tapia Farms 025

If you still want to see great places like this around for our children get out of the grocery store and into the local farm. Google a local farm or fruit stand near you and you won’t regret it!Tapia Farms 023

Mache Salad

I was first introduced to this very interesting lettuce last year by my dear friend Melinda. I love love salad but sometime I get sick of the arugula and spinach. This mache salad is super easy, great for sharing, perfect for lunch on the go, and a new flavor to the salad menu!

Serves: 2-4 (2 for main dish, 4 for side)

Ingredients:

  • 1 bag of Trader Joes Mache lettuce, washed
  • 1 1/2 c sliced cherry tomatoes
  • 1-2 avocados (depending on size of avo)
  • 4 tbsp walnut oil
  • 4 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 2 tsp minced garlic
  • black crushed pepper
    The salad

    The salad pieces

    The dressing

    The dressing

Directions:

  1. Pull off the root of the Mache lettuce (you can keep them on I just prefer them seperate).
  2. Cut avo meat into cubes.
  3. In a large bowl combine Mache, avo, and sliced cherry tomatoes
  4. In a small dish combine walnut oil, red wine vinegar, and garlic. Mix thoroughly.
  5. Pour dressing over salad. Top with crushed black pepper. Toss salad.
  6. Serve up and enjoy! 🙂
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Such yummy goodness!

 

How to Travel Healthy….a Trip to the Central Coast

Vacation…mmm…a time we all live for. Traveling is one of my favorite things to do. Anthony and I try to get out of LA at least three times a year to explore, meet new people, and break away from the day to day routine. This vacation was to a home away from home for me….to the central coast. I was lucky enough to live in San Luis Obispo for four years during college and everyday I dream of moving back! It is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been to…the beach, the mountains, the fresh air, and the people….the pace of life is just perfect and it is amazing how people not only acknowledge each other (not very common in LA) but actually strike up conversations with each other. We met so many interesting great people on this trip and learned just where to go!

I used to think of vacation as a time to go all out and eat whatever I wanted…to throw the diet and fitness plan out the window.  But I found that by day two I would have no energy and felt overall pretty crappy. And who wants to feel like crap on their vacation?! Not me! So last year I started experimenting on what are the best traveling snacks! We still enjoy a lovely latte in the AM and Anthony enjoys the continental breakfast, special little sweet treats we find at local bakeries (if they cater to the GF&DF), and of course an over the top dinner! Packing snacks, breakfasts and lunches is not only great to give you more energy and nutrition but also save a ton of money….more $$ for shopping or fancy dinners out!

Yes this does require some planning and prep work but trust me it is worth it! Here is what I brought with us~

Drinks:

  • 2 large bottles of water
  • 2 gallon jugs of water
  • 1 refillable water bottle
  • 1 bottle of Champagne/Sparkling Wine

    Toast

    Toast

  • 1 bottle of red wine

Breakfasts:

  • Fresh fruit…apples and bananas
  • Homemade Granola
  • Almond milk (love the Trader’s boxed…no refrigeration needed until opened)
  • Protein powder and shaker bottle

Snacks:

  • Trail mix
  • Pop chips
  • Snack Bars- Luna, BeKind, Pure….
  • Banana Chips
  • Dried Fruit
  • Cut up raw veggies and hummus

Lunches:

  • Chickpea salad and Salami with mustard
  • Quinoa Chicken Salad and Goat Chevre with Spicy Red Pepper Jam

Sweets:

  • Chocolate covered almonds
  • Chocolate Stuffed Raspberries

Recipes of Health and Deliciousness!

Homemade Granola:

Ingredients-

  • 2 c Gluten Free Oats
  • 1/2 c raw almonds
  • 1/2 c raw walnuts
  • 1/4 c sunflower seeds
  • 1/4 c flax seeds
  • 1/4 c dried cranberries
  • 1/4 c yellow raisins
  • 1/4 c shaved coconut flakes
  • 1/4 c agave
  • 2 tbsp grapeseeds oil
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tsp ginger
    Almond,, Walnuts, Sunflower Seeds, Yellow Raisins, Dried Cranberries, Coconut Flakes

    Almond,, Walnuts, Sunflower Seeds, Yellow Raisins, Dried Cranberries, Coconut Flakes

    Flax Seeds, Grapeseed Oil, Agave, Cinnamon, Ginger

    Flax Seeds, Grapeseed Oil, Agave, Cinnamon, Ginger

    1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil.
    2. In a large bowl mix oats, almonds, walnuts, sunflower seeds, flax seeds, and coconut flakes. In a small bowl mix grapeseed oil, agave, cinnamon, and ginger.
    3. Mix the liquid ingredients into the dry, thoroughly.
    4. Spread mixture thinly onto baking sheet.
    5. Bake for a total of 3o minutes, stirring every 10 minutes. Until golden brown.

      Dig in!

      Dig in!

Chickpea Salad:

Ingredients-

  • 1 can rinse and strained chickpeas
  • 2 ripe avocados
  • 1 c chopped cherry tomatoes
  • 2 c chopped spinach
  • 1 c chopped cucumber
  • 4 stalks of diced green onion
  • 1/3 c chopped cilantro
  • black pepper
  • pink sea salt
  • 2 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tbsp grapeseed oil

Lemon Basil Dressing-

  • Juice 2 small lemons
  • 1/3 c extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp crushed garlic
  • 2 tbsp dried basil
  • black pepper (to taste)

Dressing Directions-

  1. Mix all ingredients in a salad dressing shaker (If you don’t have one get one!). You will use this for both salads!

Salad Directions-

  1. Marinate chickpeas in black pepper, salt, basil and grapeseed oil for 2 plus hours (best overnight) in a large tupperware.
  2. Mix all other ingredients into marinated chickpeas.
  3. Top with lemon basil dressing. Mix and taste. Add more if desired.
    Chickpea Salad with Salami @ Tolosa Vineyard

    Chickpea Salad with Salami @ Tolosa Vineyard

    Best place to picnic among the vines!

    Best place to picnic among the vines!

Chocolate Stuffed Raspberries:

Ingredients-

  • Clean and dried raspberries
  • Trader Joe’s Semi Sweet Vegan Chocolate Chips

Directions-

  1. Stuff individual chocolate chips in the center of each raspberry. Enjoy 🙂

    Chocolate Stuffed Raspberries

    Chocolate Stuffed Raspberries

Quinoa Chicken Salad:

Ingredients-

  • 1 baked chicken breast, chopped and cooled
  • 10-14 spears of asparagus, baked and cooled
  • 1 c cooked quinoa, chilled and mixed with 1 tbsp grapeseed oil and 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1/2 c chopped marinated artichoke hearts
  • 1 chopped red bell pepper
  • 1/3 c crumbled goat cheese
  • 1/4 c chopped cilantro
  • black pepper

Directions-

  1. Mix all ingredients in a large tupperware.
  2. Top with crushed black pepper and the lemon basil dressing. Mix. Taste. Add more if needed.
    Quinoa Chickpea Salad

    Quinoa Chickpea Salad

    Quinoa Chicken Salad with Goat Chevre and Spicy Red Pepper Jam and Rice Crackers

    Quinoa Chicken Salad with Goat Chevre and Spicy Red Pepper Jam and Rice Crackers

    Some Fun at Mitchella Winery after lunch

    Some Fun at Mitchella Winery after lunch

    Breathtaking Backyard

    Breathtaking Backyard

Tips!

  • Make and chop as much of this stuff before hand!
  • Plan and plan…make it fun!
  • Make dishes that you are proud to serve

Must Have Equipment-

  • Cooler (for everything you are bringing on the trip)
  • A good picnic basket/backpack complete with full set silverware and napkins
  • Ask the hotel if you can get a fridge in the room…most have this available…you just need to ask
  • Cutting board, wine opener, small sharp knife

Have fun! Enjoy yourself and Explore 🙂

Laetita- Arroyo Grande

Laetita- Arroyo Grande

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Tolosa- Edna Valley

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My ladybug friends in Pismo

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Watching the sunset off the rooftop…love Seacrest Inn

Dinner Buona Tavola in downtown SLO

Dinner Buona Tavola in downtown SLO

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AM workout…our walk for a delish latte…of course some exercise

Tobin James

Tobin James

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Calcareous- Paso Robles

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Ventana Grill…Pismo Beach

Wondering Avila Beach before our appointment at the Sycamore Hot Springs :)

Wondering Avila Beach before our appointment at the Sycamore Hot Springs 🙂

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Monday morning walk on the beach…freezing but had to get some work in… and what a better place?

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Amazing view from gazebo in Pismo…our hawk friend in the tree

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Great views even in the fog- Pismo Beach

A trip to New Frontiers...Vegan Chocolate Peanut Butter Shake and GF DF chocolate cake...our sweet trip for the drive home

A trip to New Frontiers…Vegan Chocolate Peanut Butter Shake and GF DF chocolate cake…our sweet trip for the drive home

We had such an incredible trip! Our healthy snacks made it easy for us to do as much as we did and feel as good as we did! Of course we loved our fancy dinner out, enjoying all the wine, amazing hot springs and some delicious desserts! The money we saved made a fun shopping trip on our way out in downtown SLO ;).

Til the next trip 🙂