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LIFESTYLE

Holiday Dinner Hacks

Holiday dinners can be a huge source of anxiety for a lot of us. Whether you are trying to lose, gain or maintain your weight we tend to face the same struggles at large celebratory dinners. From the endless amount of menu options on the buffet to the pressure faced when eating with family and friends, it can be a struggle to not overeat, or in some cases, undereat at a holiday meal.

Since I celebrate Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, I want to share my five strategies to navigating a holiday meal so you can eat and enjoy in the best possible way.

1. Go green

When it’s time to fill up your plate, start with greens (salad, veggies) and try and take up half the plate with them. This will still leave a little room for all the meat, pasta and potatoes but keep your portions in check.

2. Drink up to fill up

Before the meal, have a large glass of water. This will not only help with digestion later on but will keep your hunger cues in check and help prevent overeating.

3. Plan your treat

I’m all for indulging and truthfully would rather have dessert than anything else in the world. If you go to the same house for the holidays every year and know you love your aunt’s honey cake, plan to have your specific treat to avoid getting overwhelmed with all the other choices. 

4. Get moving

Try scheduling a workout in either the day of your big meal or the following morning. Even a light walk around the block will help with digestion and allow you to keep up your healthy moving habits. 

5. Lose the guilt

Whether it’s the New Year or Thanksgiving, the holidays are the time to connect with family and friends. They are also holidays – they happen a few times a year. Let yourself live, enjoy and then get back to routine when they are done. One piece of cake or one giant meal will not set you back. Lose the guilt and enjoy yourself. 

 

Photos from Pinterest.

 

New Home Inspo

This post is quite different from anything else I’ve ever written about, however, I always want to write about things that are on my mind. And right now I have home decor on my mind.

This is rare for me as decor isn’t really my thing. Luckily, however, it is my sister’s thing. Well it’s not just her thing, after all she is the brains,beauty and designer behind Jessica Claire Interiors

I’m so privileged to have such a renowned and talented designer as my sister helping to decorate our new home. Her and DC have been super busy ordering furniture and measuring walls while I’ve been pretty much useless, unless you consider screenshotting pretty pictures of plants helpful. 

It’s been really funny to see how my interior style has evolved over time. I moved into my condo almost 7 years ago and the colour scheme was hot pink and bright orange. Several years later DC moved in and we didn’t exactly re-decorate but rather hung up some Philidelphia Eagles and Grateful Dead paraphernalia. This is the first time we are getting to decorate a home together and, luckily, completely agree on the aesthetic – something I’m calling “ethnic-beachy-namaste.”

Despite having to be reminded I’m not moving into a green house, I’ve been pinning my decor inspo like crazy and I’m hoping it turns out something like this. I can’t wait to show you the final product in about a month’s time. 

5 Healthy Gut Tips

By now you are probably very familiar with how important our guts are to our overall health. After all, it is said that the gut is our “second brain,” potentially having as much of an effect on our mental health as our physical health.

The scary thing is, for most of us, our gut health is seriously lacking. From the moment we are born our once sterile microbiome is polluted with bad bacteria from the air we breath, to the things we eat and the products we put on our bodies.

While we will never be able to repair our guts to full perfection, there are many steps we can take to help restore and promote healthy bacteria in our bodies. 

Here are five of my favourite tricks that I am trying to turn into a habit so I can treat my gut with the utmost respect it deserves:

Probiotics

Probiotics are an easy first step in healing your microbiome. They are flavourless, easy to store at either room temperature or in the fridge and for most people, have limited to no side effects. I personally look for a brand with over 50 billion good bacteria cultures. 

Apple Cider Vinegar

ACD has a ton of gut-healing properties. My favourite is that it aids in digestion. Try adding 1 tablespoon to a glass of water and drinking it first thing in the morning, before you eat anything. This will allow you to better absorb the nutrients from your food. 

 

Water

I can go on and on about the benefits of drinking water. But in prioritizing your gut, water is crucial to getting things moving and promoting healthy bowel movements. In this case, it’s not just about the quantity of water but the quality too. Make sure to drink clean, filtered water without the use of chlorine, as chlorine can actually be counterproductive and kill the good bacteria in our guts.

Anti-inflammatory foods

It’s a no brainer that anti-inflammatory foods such a dark leafy greens and healthy fats are vital to a healthy lifestyle and it is no different when it comes to your gut. Swapping out our inflammatory foods like refined sugar, fried food and dairy for healthier choices isn’t just about looking better on the outside but your gut with also thank you for it.

Sleep

You know that anxious pit in your stomach when you are stressed? Well this is the perfect example to show you how stress literally affects our gut. There are many ways we can try and manage our stress but sleep is one of the most important. Getting enough rest each night will help relax your nervous system during the day, ultimately leading to a more peaceful state of mind (in your head and gut!).

* All photos from Google Images*