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Featured Fitness Lifestyle Nutrition

Connection

There’s so much that pressures us to have it “all” – big houses, more money, top of the line clothing, having our homes look like they are straight out of magazines. It’s all there, all around us. Advertising sprinkled in our relaxing tv time, out our windows as we drive to soccer practice and work, in between our finger scrolls and magazine flips at our doctor appointments. And for awhile, it is so ingrained that we don’t even realize that it’s happening. And, most importantly, that it’s all fake. Created to make us consumers. To make us spend more money, make more money, spend more money and so on.

It seems sort of ok, and sometimes harmless to acquire stuff and to enjoy creating an image for ourselves, but what’s the actual damage being done?

I hate to say it, but my opinion is that the damage is deep. We have created a culture that values nothing. Not even each other. We actually have allowed ourselves to value the junk to the point of tearing each other apart – constantly judging and commenting and comparing. We are valuing things we were told would fill us and the reality is that they don’t.

Take it from me. During diagnosis I was confronted with a variety of things that this MS could have been – tumors, other diseases, and some with not good prognosis. I spent a week waiting for results of a test for something that had a strong likelihood of leaving me blind and paralyzed (if not dead) within 5 years. This changed me. As I sat on the floor with my two babies toddling around beside me, I remember taking in every breath as if it were my last and questioning what was left for me here. And I will tell you this, none of it included house décor, new clothes, or really the best of anything.

What I actually found in the aftermath of this waiting period (which I would claim left me in some kind of PTSD state for quite some time), was that I wanted everything in my home to be as simple as possible. Décor that only reminded me of a wonderful memory or love and health. Clothes that simply comforted me and made me feel unique. I wanted all of the stuff, all of the bull#$!& out of my life because all I wanted was the space to hold the people I loved and the immense laughter and fun that we share, and the room to go out into the world and enjoy new experiences. That’s it. My people and the world.

So when I read Johann Hari’s book Lost Connections recently, I was confirmed in my beliefs that we are caring for things that don’t matter, and becoming isolated in the mean time. We are losing connections left and right and our society/advertising is not providing the examples to help us get back to ourselves and each other. Hari states, “You need your pain. It is a message, and we must listen to the message. All these depressed and anxious people, all over the world- they are giving us a message. They are telling us something has gone wrong with the way we live. We need to stop trying to muffle or silence or pathologize that pain. Instead, we need to listen to it, and honor it.”

Our bodies are amazing. They are meant to hold us and nourish us. They want to be healthy. It is not possible, in my mind, that so many of us seem to be suffering (physically or emotionally) because our bodies are physically simply failing us. All of us? Really?

Hari’s book goes on to discuss 9 ways (and he claims there’s probably more) that we have or can lose connection in our lives. It’s an incredible book to help you look at the power you have over how you feel, and the life you are living.

One of the most eye-opening connections for me was our loss of connection to each other. I mean, I think we all realize that it’s happening with technology, but I kind of forgot about the way humans have evolved. “Now imagine if-“ Hari states, “on those savannas – you became separated from the group and were alone for a protracted period of time. It meant you were in terrible danger. You were vulnerable to predators, if you got sick nobody would be there to nurse you, and the rest of the tribe was more vulnerable without you too. You would be right to feel terrible. It was an urgent signal from your body and brain to get back to the group, any damn way you could. So every human instinct is honed not for life on your own, but for life like this, in a tribe.”

So these individual lives we’ve created – new moms/dads taking on everything because they need to meet that standard of doing it all, people working 40+ hour weeks with no time for family or love, kids racing from activity to activity with no downtime for the joys created in boredom or socializing in the neighborhood – we are alone more than ever and it is damaging our health. We need each other. We need someone to bring meals after a new arrival, and give advice on how they cared for their crying babies. And we need to know it is ok to accept other people’s offerings, it doesn’t mean we are less. We need to scale back on our material possessions so the need for money, and overly full work weeks, can go away. We need to make sure our children freely play in the dirt. No guidance, no micro-managing just open, dirty exploration. These connections help us to be our best selves and feel fulfilled. We are all supposed to be doing this together. Helping one another, laughing at mistakes and jokes, crying during sad and frustrating times and just boosting each other along during this crazy ride of life.

It’s not easy. I still continue to strive for this simpler way of living every day. But the best part is that it doesn’t have to happen all at once. So just take a look around. Take a look at connections- to the earth, to others, to service, to love. Start filling in the gaps, piece by piece, step by step, and create that meaningful life you were meant to live.

Featured Lifestyle Nutrition

Top Ten Favorite Meals & Food Realizations of 2018

Most of the time we look forward into the new year with plans and goals and hopes. Of course, I’ve thought of  a few things I’d like to try to work on (catch up on my family photos, continue working on letting go of rules and expectations I created for myself, travel with my family, etc.) but what I’ve realized too, is that I need to also reflect on the past year as well. What have I learned? How have I grown? What did I accomplish? Was I hoping to accomplish that or was it a goal I added along the way? So, in honor of reflection, I accumulated my 10 favorite meals that I cooked at home, and the important realizations about food and cooking that came along with.

 

Top Ten Favorite Meals and Food Realizations of 2018

 

Don’t Be Afraid to Serve Veggies for Breakfast

Especially if your concern for more veggies is for your kids, just remember, they don’t know any different! Adults are the ones who are accustomed to cereal, eggs, toast, pancakes – the breakfast ‘staples’. Add them in slowly if it feels weird, like with this meal – fried egg, bacon & brussel sprouts, or blend them up in a smoothie. It’s only your mind that’s keeping it from happening. Retrain your brain. It’ll thank you later.

 

 

Use Your Spices

What I have noticed in eating real food, is that my palate and taste buds have changed so much. I actually crave the natural tastes of foods. But if you’re not quite there, or just need a little change, get out those spices! Heating up that cauliflower with some cayenne, paprika, turmeric and cinnamon will keep the food interesting and taste buds satiated. Spices also come equipped with an array of health benefits – everything from added vitamins and minerals to having antibacterial properties. Can’t beat that.

 

 

Trust Yourself

Look in your fridge for ingredients. Use your intuition, former eating knowledge, and google if you must to create some kind of delicious meal. For the Ginger Carrot Soup above I had a TON of extra carrots in the fridge, and some broth in the freezer. So I heated some onions, oil and garlic (that’s always a good place to start). Then I grated some ginger, threw in some carrots, and let it simmer. I added some celery from the fridge cause it doesn’t really change the taste much, and it’s healthful. Blended it up and made my husband be the taste tester. Things have turned out first try, no problems. And things have turned out, well, pretty poorly. But that’s the moment you change your relationship with food. What is the taste I’m tasting? What is the taste I need? How do I get it? Sweeter? Saltier? Too spicy? Too bland? It might feel scary. And it might be unfortunate to eat a less than average meal, but nothing else will ever be able to teach you more about cooking at home. It kind of goes back to that saying I used in my classroom, “”Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn.” – Benjamin Franklin

 

 

Just Serve Real Food

I often get caught up in thinking myself or my kids need more than just real food. It’s hard because our emotions (in combination with some heavy advertising) get in the way, urging us to eat for comfort or for escape. Instead of reaching for boxes or bags that we can eat and eat and ‘disappear’ for awhile, I try to stay conscious in what I grab, as well as keep my pantry stocked accordingly. I try and keep myself nourished and full, and then deal with the real reason that I want to ‘get away’. Geneen Roth has written a really interesting book titled Women, Food, and God that digs deep into the way we use food as an escape, and that in facing our emotions we are better able to make nourishing choices.

 

 

Meat As A Side 

This idea came about rather naturally. As we increased our vegetable intake something had to give, and we ended up eating less meat. Then while reading from Dr. Mark Hyman, he confirmed that viewing meat as a side might be beneficial to our health. There’s a mix of research out there on it’s benefits. I tend to lean toward this idea that it could have benefits but probably not in excess, so we tend to focus on the veggies first. We also noticed that less meat consumption saved us a few bucks, too. Win, win.

And, just because I like the crispy edges of the meatloaf (yum!), I put it in muffin tins. Turns out it makes it an easy way to create nice portion sizes, too!

 

 

Prepare for Events

Our family went on an epic camping adventure this past summer, and I did not want to give up on the goals we had attained throughout the years, even though it seemed much easier just to eat on the road. So we tried our best to prep and pack our food and it really was an amazing success. All we did was pre-cook our favorite skillet meals (this one is a sweet potato, onion, zucchini, greens and spicy chicken sausage mix), package, and freeze. Then reheated them over the camp burner and fire. It turns out that eating really good food, outside, over the campfire tastes amazing, and gives you the energy and stamina to make your travels that much better.

 

 

Listen to Your Body – Eat Seasonally

We often use the local farmers markets for fresh food in the summer. This year we decided to try out an organic farm-share, Featherstone Farm MN that provided seasonal veggies from spring through fall, and we couldn’t have been happier. It was so interesting to see how the food that showed up in our boxes was the exact food that we were craving. We began to feel what it’s like to eat seasonally. The share also challenged us to eat things we wouldn’t normally pick up at the grocery store, like the turnips used in the crock-pot roast pictured above. It added so much color and variety, which our bodies thrive from. Most importantly, to me, it taught my children about where our food comes from and opened the door to lots of questions and taste-testing. I highly recommend looking into a farm share near you.

 

 

 

Have Fun Meals Together

Although our meals might seem less fun to some, I think we really found that the community aspect of sharing a meal together is actually what makes a meal. We still try to have some “fun food” – taco nights, self serve sweet potato bar (pictured above), snack attack night, and even eating the rainbow. We try to just make the event of eating more important than the actual food. Weather permitting we almost always take it outside. We talk about what we are thankful for, listen to favorite songs, and even play games like Would You Rather or 20 Questions while we eat. The focus leaves the food and moves onto what’s really important about gathering together for a meal.

 

 

Make it Easy

Don’t get me wrong in any of this. Cooking takes time. Sometimes it takes SO much time. So we also have found products and ways to make delicious meals more simply. In general, eating real food does make it quite simple. Meat on the grill, roasted veggies in the oven and you can’t go wrong. Stir-fry and saute, like the one pictured above, are often made from pre-shredded packaged veggies (this one in particular is prepackaged brussel sprouts, cabbage, kale, carrots, broccoli with some bacon). It’s so much simpler to have some options to grab and go, ready in the fridge. If you have a trusted source, it’s not bad to buy the product that makes it easier.

 

 

Cooking Is A Part of Who We Are

Our society has turned cooking into this thing on our list of to-do’s that we need to just get done, and get done quick. When in actuality, cooking from home is an age old tradition. There is tremendous benefit to physical health and family emotional health when cooking and eating from home. Experimenting in the kitchen, like pictured above with my homemade beet noodle pad thai, is a part of who we are. What we eat is an indicator of our spiritual health and how we treat ourselves in every way. This year, give yourself the gift of health, connection to family and most importantly connection to you.

Featured Nutrition

Becoming a Wahls Warrior

There really wasn’t a lot of time where I contemplated becoming a Wahls Warrior. During diagnosis time, I did not feel comforted or settled by medication in any way. I wasn’t experiencing such intense symptoms that I needed relief. So when my sweet sister sent me the Terry Wahls TEDx talk Minding Your Mitochondria, I was really all in. (That’s us pictured above on our adventure to Australia, right before I became pregnant with my first son and this whole, crazy journey began.) I loved that it was something I could try, something I could control, while I figured out what was happening to me. It can be followed with or without medication use, so I figured it was something that would benefit my body regardless of the other decisions I came to. I brought the newfound information to my neuro’s attention who was, to say the least, rudely unaccepting of the idea. But it just resonated with me. It felt too wrong to go against that feeling I had deep in my soul. I had birthed two beautiful boys by c-section. They were only 18 months apart. I had breast-fed them both for a year after birth and had lost all plus some of my baby weight. I was giving away all of my nutrients for 4 years straight! And I had this overwhelming feeling that I just wanted to get myself to the healthiest place I could possibly be before I started injecting myself with something.

So I jumped in. I read the book and started making drastic changes. Three years and a few months later and I am relapse free and feeling great. I have been able to remain drug free, and continue to live an active life. I followed her protocol strictly to start, and have since found ways to adjust it to my lifestyle. I have increased my activity levels, worked on bettering my sleep, and dug into some emotional wounds by writing on my own and reading from great authors. I have become a Wahls Health Coach and am now working on guiding others through the protocol. It has been the greatest blessing to find Terry Wahls (thank you forever, Hannah) and I am so grateful, every day, that she has been brave enough to share her story and hope. The Wahls research team continues to study and provide evidence about her protocol. There are phenomenal testimonies and claims that following her protocol has changed the lives of people dealing with everything from being overweight to Parkinson’s to PANDAS to Multiple Sclerosis and more.

Want to get started right away?  Start adding in fruits and vegetables, at least 2 at every meal. Start noticing your gluten and dairy intake, and start to try alternatives. Both can trigger an inappropriate immune response, esp in those with chronic disease. And don’t forget to move your body every day. You’ll learn more details as you go, but you have to start somewhere.

This is your life and you deserve health. Grab a copy of The Wahls Protocol and The Wahls Protocol Cooking for Life, and get started.  And if you need support, let me know.

Lifestyle Nutrition

Align

After digging into nutrition quite a bit, I have realized that there is a tremendous amount of information out there and we are learning more and more all of the time. There are so many different ways to eat, and things to eat, that I feel like each of them has their own benefits. Sometimes I feel lost in what to do.

It is overwhelming to try to figure out what to do to keep yourself at peak performance. You will find that you should eat meat. You will find that you shouldn’t eat meat. You will find that carbs are good, but not too many, and only certain types. You will find that veggies are important, but you have to be careful eating them raw if you have thyroid issues (do I have thyroid issues?) and even that the way you cook your food can change it’s nutritional value all together. Not to mention the latest research I’ve been encountering – individualized nutrition and eating for your blood type! That swirling door of options and continual growth, with no concrete answers, can feel like chaos. When that chaotic, anxious feeling encircles a choice in your life (whatever that choice may be) I have learned that you have to find your ground before you make a decision. You have to be in tune with your path in order to stay aligned.

After my diagnosis, the doctors and the drug companies took over my life. I did not feel involved in the plan or the choices. There was obviously a set protocol to follow with MS that began to fall into place, and the drug company was calling me on the regular to get started on their medication. For some reason (god, intuition, fate whatever you want to call it) I just couldn’t go along with it right then. I wanted to take a minute. Everything was spinning so fast, and I just wanted everything to slow down for a second. I wanted a moment to breathe and to let this all sink in. I wanted to learn about what was happening to me. I wanted to think about what it was going to mean to put injections into my body everyday, or leave my children for hours at a time for infusions. I wanted time to understand the short-term and long-term effectiveness of some of these drugs. I wanted time to look at side-effects like nausea, respiratory infections, liver complications, and even brain infections and death, and make the decisions that were best for me and my family. I ended up going on a different path than the doctor suggested, and whether or not it’s the best one according to other people (doctors or not) it seriously doesn’t matter because it is the best one for me. I feel like my life has been successful these last 3 years because I listened. I am giving my time and energy to the things that truly matter to me, and therefore my life is being lived in alignment with my soul.

Deepak Chopra’s The Book of Secrets has an excellent section about this idea. He discusses how your choices are obviously important. For example, if you are trying to decide how you are going to nourish your body, that is important. But ultimately, there is a set of deeper level questions that matter more to your living than which diet you choose.

“Does this choice feel right for me?

Am I interested in where this choice is leading?

Do I like the people involved?

Is this choice good for my whole family?

Does this choice make sense given my stage in life?

Do I feel morally justified in making this choice?

Will this choice help me grow?

Do I have a chance to be more creative and inspired by what I am about to do?”

He continues on, “It’s when these things go wrong (the situations listed above) that choices don’t work out. People who can assess their choices at the deeper level of awareness are aligning themselves with infinite intelligence, and thus they have a greater chance for success than does someone who crunches the numbers.”

I am not writing on this blog to tell someone with MS how to live, or the path that they should follow. Every single person will have their own. I’m not sharing my knowledge about nutrition because I have one perfect diet that will make perfect health. There is so much we have yet to understand about nutrition. I am writing because I’m encouraging you to find your own way with the path of your life. We are inundated with information. Our society is expanding and curious, and has lots of different answers for everything. I am not here with the answers, I am here encouraging you to take a moment before you make your decision, to close your eyes, to ask yourself those questions above, and then to listen. Follow that spark inside you that is leading you on your path, a path of contentment and peace.

I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul.  William Ernest Henley

In being true to yourself you will find that things no longer go right or wrong, things just go. Your life then becomes a journey of learning. “Either it is good for you, or it is bringing up what you need to look at in order to create good for you. Evolution is win-win.” (Chopra, p.97) When we stay aligned with who we are we stand stronger because our true purpose is being pursued. It is when we make choices to fit in or to make others happy, that we start the fall of losing ourselves and things can get terribly messy.

Give yourself a few moments (or many moments if you can manage). Write, draw, think, pray – if that’s what you do. Allow yourself to connect to you. You are the guide of your life. Let your life shine.

Nutrition

Full Menu and Notes

PDF of Menu

 

Sunday

Toast and yogurt, mac and cheese, and burgers

Monday

Egg muffins, soup and grilled cheese, and pancakes

Tuesday

Oatmeal, turkey sandwiches, and chicken in the crockpot

Wednesday

Leftover Day!

Thursday

Oatmeal, turkey rolls, and ordered pizza

Friday 

Waffles, leftovers and salmon

Saturday

Toast, mac and cheese, and grilled chicken

 

So, there it is! Again, our goals for our children lately have included increasing our colorful vegetable intake, having meal times that are delicious, easy, kid friendly and fun, as well as being able to maintain a budget. Keep in mind that our family is at a point where we are choosing mostly, but not always: organic foods, whole wheat grains, grass-fed and wild-caught meats, pasture raised dairy and eggs, to increase health value, but that these choices must be made based on your own family principle.  If you’re interested in the daily recommendations, see the charts and notes attached! Check out the daily links for details on each day and to see how I eat an anti-inflammatory diet alongside my family’s meals. For more of an intro to our whole eating journey click here.

If you have any questions or would like any further information please don’t hesitate to hit up my contact page!

He who has health, has hope. And he who has hope, has everything else.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nutrition

Saturday

Don’t forget to check out the info on our Real Food Journey if you’d like the details of what we strive for in our home. There are links to each day and a printable PDF of the week as a whole.

 

Last, but not least, one of my favorite days of the week…Saturday!

Breakfast

Toast with nut butter, flaxseed, honey and a side of bananas and oranges

Sometime in the morning I placed the thawed chicken breasts in a container, smothered in italian dressing, and put them back in the fridge until tonight.

Lunch

Mac and Cheese with added peas

Dinner

Chicken breasts on the grill – the italian dressing gives it the perfect blackened and sweet flavor

Chopped potatoes, carrots, beets, onion roasted in the oven with oil, salt, pepper, rosemary and thyme (Pictured above is my son doing some of the prep for the roasted veggies, he’s only three and is regularly in the kitchen! Kids feel that sense of pride when they make the meal, just like we do!)

Greens with italian dressing

 

 


 

Notes

Our family mostly drinks water. You’ll notice these menus are usually a little lighter on dairy based on the government recommendations, but if you add in a glass of milk you should meet those requirements if they are important to you.

You’ll notice the menus are light on fruit as well, and that’s because grabbing a piece of fruit, especially apples, is a common snack occurrence in our household.  My kids would snack all day if allowed, but at least twice a day is normal. Typical snacks for the kids include: salami, cheese sticks, fruit (apples, oranges, bananas, grapes, berries), veggies (carrots, peppers, cucumbers, celery) and hummus or guacamole, crackers/pretzels/popcorn, Lara Bars, applesauce, raisins, greek yogurt & berries, or trail mix.

I am working on using The Wahls Protocol, along with other research, to follow an anti-inflammatory and nutrient enriching diet for someone diagnosed with MS. I am not a doctor and am in no way providing this as anything other than a documentation of what I am eating and how I eat this way alongside my children. Typical snack items for me include Suja green juice, kombucha, tea, raw nuts/trail mixes, popcorn, tortilla chips/veggies and guac. You can also find my husband with an old fashioned, and me with a glass of red wine or a Glutenburg with lime later on in the evening.

 


 

My Breakfast

Turmeric Tea

After such a light day yesterday, I was starving and actually ate salmon and saute alongside my kiddos toast. I have dropped all those rules that tell me what I can eat when, what time I can eat, etc. It is so freeing!

My Lunch

Pulled out some light snacks (since I had a pretty filling breakfast) for lunch while my kids napped – salami, peppers – cucumbers – and a few tortilla chips with guac, two dates, and a side of Suja green juice.

 

My Dinner

Same as the family – chicken, roasted veggies, greens

Nutrition

Friday

Don’t forget to check out the info on our Real Food Journey if you’d like the details of what we strive for in our home. There are links to each day and a printable PDF of the week as a whole.

 

Breakfast

We woke up on the later side today, and didn’t have time for a cook-your-own-breakfast, so we always try to have a decent store bought frozen set of waffles in the freezer. Accompanied by a pick your favorite fruit (apple, banana, tangerine) from the basket and we are set for a quick, filling, easy breakfast (pictured above).

Lunch

Last night’s leftovers. Once again we had a veggie start and then a slice of leftover pizza!

Dinner

Since we’ve been indulging on the pizza, I decided to keep it ultra healthy and anti-inflammatory with salmon and zuchinni, squash, mushroom, onion, garlic, and oil stir fry. (I usually buy a large chunk of wild-caught frozen salmon at Target and just keep it in the freezer for nights like these. Bake it in the oven with a squeezed lemon, salt and pepper for an easy and healthful meal.)

 

 


 

Notes

Our family mostly drinks water. You’ll notice these menus are usually a little lighter on dairy based on the government recommendations, but if you add in a glass of milk you should meet those requirements if they are important to you.

You’ll notice the menus are light on fruit as well, and that’s because grabbing a piece of fruit, especially apples, is a common snack occurrence in our household.  My kids would snack all day if allowed, but at least twice a day is normal. Typical snacks for the kids include: salami, cheese sticks, fruit (apples, oranges, bananas, grapes, berries), veggies (carrots, peppers, cucumbers, celery) and hummus or guacamole, crackers/pretzels/popcorn, Lara Bars, applesauce, raisins, greek yogurt & berries, or trail mix.

I am working on using The Wahls Protocol, along with other research, to follow an anti-inflammatory and nutrient enriching diet for someone diagnosed with MS. I am not a doctor and am in no way providing this as anything other than a documentation of what I am eating and how I eat this way alongside my children. Typical snack items for me include Suja green juice, kombucha, tea, raw nuts/trail mixes, popcorn, tortilla chips/veggies and guac. You can also find my husband with an old fashioned, and me with a glass of red wine or a Glutenburg with lime later on in the evening.

 


 

My Breakfast

Hot Water with Lemon and Cayenne 

Suja Uber Greens Juice (There are lots of options for green juice, even within Suja. I try to find the one with the least fruit and most veggies.)

 

My Lunch

Smoothie – raspberries, pineapple, 1/2 banana, baby kale, flaxseed, water, lions mane

 

My Dinner

Same as the family – salmon and sauté

 

This was a pretty light day for me, but I didn’t work out besides some stretching and I like to give my body a light day after I indulge in something.

Nutrition

Thursday

Don’t forget to check out the info on our Real Food Journey if you’d like the details of what we strive for in our home. There are links to each day and a printable PDF of the week as a whole.

 

Breakfast

Oatmeal with raisins and finely chopped raw mixed nuts

Lunch

Turkey rolls, crackers

Chopped peppers, carrots, cucumbers, and celery with hummus (I chop up all I have so I can use them tonight!)

Dinner

Tonight is an ordering pizza night! (Pictured above, on this lucky night, we were able to bring a partially baked Happy Joe’s Taco Pizza home with us after some travels! Normally we order from a local pizza shop we love called Detellos) Here are a few of my ways I keep the fun of ordering pizza healthy! (My older son loves when we order pizza, “Can we have the guy come to our house and bring it here?!”)

I order the pizza when I know it’s a little past ‘hungry time’. Once I order I set out a bunch of snacks/salad while we wait. Chopped up veggies from earlier with hummus or guac. I also plate a salad. They are usually so hungry that most of those good veggies are gone by the time the pizza comes.

As far as our pizza ordering goes, we never really order a plain pizza. We ask the kids questions like, do you want meat or just cheese? Do you want peppers, olives or mushrooms? Not an open-ended what do you want? We often talk about how your body needs the fuel from your meal to grow and be fast and strong. They have learned that vegetables are always a part of our meals, so questions like this go over pretty well here. But if you are working on this aspect I encourage you to just keep trying. Give them veggie options for their pizza that may seem weird to others but are their favorite to eat normally, or have plain pizza but then add some veggies on the side. Also, saying light cheese still gets you a good pizza with a little less dairy inflammation in the system, and many pizza places have gluten-free, organic and lots of other options – sometimes you just have to ask.

Never underestimate the power of teaching a child about their body, nutrition, and what food is for. They really catch on at a young age, and almost every kid wants to grow big and strong, so they’re usually up for it! 

 

 


 

Notes

Our family mostly drinks water. You’ll notice these menus are usually a little lighter on dairy based on the government recommendations, but if you add in a glass of milk you should meet those requirements if they are important to you.

You’ll notice the menus are light on fruit as well, and that’s because grabbing a piece of fruit, especially apples, is a common snack occurrence in our household.  My kids would snack all day if allowed, but at least twice a day is normal. Typical snacks for the kids include: salami, cheese sticks, fruit (apples, oranges, bananas, grapes, berries), veggies (carrots, peppers, cucumbers, celery) and hummus or guacamole, crackers/pretzels/popcorn, Lara Bars, applesauce, raisins, greek yogurt & berries, or trail mix.

I am working on using The Wahls Protocol, along with other research, to follow an anti-inflammatory and nutrient enriching diet for someone diagnosed with MS. I am not a doctor and am in no way providing this as anything other than a documentation of what I am eating and how I eat this way alongside my children. Typical snack items for me include Suja green juice, kombucha, tea, raw nuts/trail mixes, popcorn, tortilla chips/veggies and guac. You can also find my husband with an old fashioned, and me with a glass of red wine or a Glutenburg with lime later on in the evening.

 


 

My Breakfast

Hot Water with Lemon and Cayenne 

Smoothie – blueberries, greens, avocado, almond milk, water, chia seeds, collagen powder, lions mane powder

 

My Lunch

Same as the kids – turkey, veggies, hummus

 

My Dinner

Large Salad – 3 cups of greens, avocado, tangerine, raw nuts, oil and vinegar 

This way, by the time pizza gets here I am seriously stuffed with goodness! Sometimes I pass the temptation, but when I am in need of indulging I definitely allow myself. I usually order a gluten free crust, spinach, onions, mushrooms and very light cheese.

Nutrition

Wednesday

Don’t forget to check out the info on our Real Food Journey if you’d like the details of what we strive for in our home. There are links to each day and a printable PDF of the week as a whole.

 

Sometimes I feel like mid-week gets the best of me. The craziness picks up a little and I feel like I do, or want to, lose control a little. It makes everything so much better, and our choices so much healthier, when I do a little extra cooking early in the week so that leftovers are a plenty by Wonderful Leftover Wednesday.

 

Breakfast

Leftover pancakes  (warm in oven or microwave)

and a Smoothie (pineapple, spinach, avocado, 1/2 banana, flaxseed, OJ and water)

 

Lunch

We had a busy morning taking one to pre-k and taking my other and my nephew to tot time and the ball pit, so I was super grateful to have these little leftover egg muffins in the fridge. I threw together some yogurt with blueberries as well.

 

Dinner

Tuesday after dinner I pulled all the chicken from the bones and put in the fridge. Then I put all the bones and ‘stuff’ back in the crockpot and filled with water to make bone broth. After straining it out I was able to use the broth tonight, along with some of the pulled chicken, noodles, and a bunch of chopped carrots, celery, onions, and dill to make some warm and cuddly Chicken Noodle Soup (pictured above).

 

 


 

Notes

Our family mostly drinks water. You’ll notice these menus are usually a little lighter on dairy based on the government recommendations, but if you add in a glass of milk you should meet those requirements if they are important to you.

You’ll notice the menus are light on fruit as well, and that’s because grabbing a piece of fruit, especially apples, is a common snack occurrence in our household.  My kids would snack all day if allowed, but at least twice a day is normal. Typical snacks for the kids include: salami, cheese sticks, fruit (apples, oranges, bananas, grapes, berries), veggies (carrots, peppers, cucumbers, celery) and hummus or guacamole, crackers/pretzels/popcorn, Lara Bars, applesauce, raisins, greek yogurt & berries, or trail mix.

I am working on using The Wahls Protocol, along with other research, to follow an anti-inflammatory and nutrient enriching diet for someone diagnosed with MS. I am not a doctor and am in no way providing this as anything other than a documentation of what I am eating and how I eat this way alongside my children. Typical snack items for me include Suja green juice, kombucha, tea, raw nuts/trail mixes, popcorn, tortilla chips/veggies and guac. You can also find my husband with an old fashioned, and me with a glass of red wine or a Glutenburg with lime later on in the evening.

 


 

My Breakfast

Hot Water with Lemon and Cayenne 

Smoothie (same as the kids but added some lion’s mane (nerve health) to mine)

 

My Lunch

Leftover chicken and roasted sweet potatoes, carrots, onions from last night

 

My Dinner

Same as the family – Chicken Noodle Soup! This time I did use rice noodles so I could technically eat them, but lots of times we have it noodle free, or I just pull some noodle free for myself and then cook a batch with noodles for the family.

 

 

Nutrition

Tuesday

Don’t forget to check out the info on our Real Food Journey if you’d like the details of what we strive for in our home. There are links to each day and a printable PDF of the week as a whole.

Breakfast

Oatmeal with blueberries

Also, this morning I put a rub on a whole chicken (I love the one from 100 Days of RealFood Cookbook!) and placed it in the crockpot over some onions.

 

Lunch

Cookie Cutter Sandwiches – bread, turkey, cheese, greens, smashed avocado, and flaxseed cookie cuttered into dogs and donkeys and people and shapes and all the random cookie cutters that I have accumulated over the years!

Multi-Colored Carrots (my kids are fascinated by purple carrots!) with guac or hummus

Dates (These were new, so to avoid the ‘new food’ ordeal we celebrated them as ‘Gigantic Raisins!’ They both ate one and my older son said he didn’t want a second because it was too sweet, go figure!)

 

Dinner

Chicken from the crockpot

Roasted carrots, sweet potatoes, onions, oil of oregano, dulse flakes, oil, salt and pepper

Greens with poppy seed dressing

 


 

Notes

Our family mostly drinks water. You’ll notice these menus are usually a little lighter on dairy based on the government recommendations, but if you add in a glass of milk you should meet those requirements if they are important to you.

You’ll notice the menus are light on fruit as well, and that’s because grabbing a piece of fruit, especially apples, is a common snack occurrence in our household.  My kids would snack all day if allowed, but at least twice a day is normal. Typical snacks for the kids include: salami, cheese sticks, fruit (apples, oranges, bananas, grapes, berries), veggies (carrots, peppers, cucumbers, celery) and hummus or guacamole, crackers/pretzels/popcorn, Lara Bars, applesauce, raisins, greek yogurt & berries, or trail mix.

I am working on using The Wahls Protocol, along with other research, to follow an anti-inflammatory and nutrient enriching diet for someone diagnosed with MS. I am not a doctor and am in no way providing this as anything other than a documentation of what I am eating and how I eat this way alongside my children. Typical snack items for me include Suja green juice, kombucha, tea, raw nuts/trail mixes, popcorn, tortilla chips/veggies and guac. You can also find my husband with an old fashioned, and me with a glass of red wine or a Glutenburg with lime later on in the evening.


 

My Breakfast

Turmeric Tea to start

Oatmeal with chopped raw nuts, chia seeds and two dates

 

My Lunch

Pretty much the same as the boys, but

Turkey Rolls (slices of turkey rolled up) instead of a sandwich

Multi-Colored Carrots and Guac

Mixed Greens Salad with Oil and Vinegar and sprinkled flaxseed

 

My Dinner

Same as the family – chicken, roasted veggies, and greens. It’s the best when this happens and the more comfortable we all are getting with eating real, whole food, the easier this is becoming!

Don’t forget that after you pull the chicken from the bones, you can use the bones to make broth!

 

 

 

 

 

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