I’m a January baby, and while many people choose the start of the new year to refocus on goals – often the same one’s year after year! – for the last few years, I’ve made Birthday Resolutions.
I never particularly liked having my birthday so soon after Christmas when I was younger, although it often made for some decent deals on gifts. As a teenager, it often meant studying for or writing exams. As a twenty-something, my friends were often still recovering from the holiday season to celebrate in a big way. Now, I appreciate that I have a couple of extra weeks to truly think about what my goals are going to be as I celebrate my birth milestone.
Then Halloween would arrive, and my kids would come home from trick or treating, excited to assess their massive haul. Of course, as a “good parent”, I would sift through and then give them an appropriate amount…and then take my favourites! OK, perhaps I sifted through, took my favourites and then let them have a reasonable amount!
By the time the new year arrived, I had experienced 3 months of a sugar high, and realized that I wasn’t feeling so good AND my clothes were no longer fitting so well. After realizing the extent of my habit, I made a commitment the following year to NOT EAT ONE Halloween candy. I knew that if I indulged in just one, it would take away the power I felt at staying committed to my goal. I won’t lie, it was incredibly hard at first, but the empowerment I felt for staying true to myself and not eating any kept me motivated. I just celebrated my 8th year of this commitment. My focus and determination wavered a little with the Christmas treats this year, but now I’m preparing for this year’s Birthday resolution.
This year I want to extend my commitment and focus and not indulge in refined sugar for 30 days. I have discovered some alternative sweeteners that I’ve tried, and they don’t react with blood sugar levels the way that refined sugar tends to. I will be conscientiously choosing those if I need something sweet or if I need to sweeten a dish I’m preparing. The whole family will benefit (or suffer, depending on how they look at it) to this to some degree. I will avoid the simple carbohydrates that don't offer dense nutrition. Who knows, the improved mental clarity that I have enjoyed when staying true to this commitment will spur me to go beyond 30 days. I’ll happily share some of my recipes and what I learn through the process.
My very first blog post and I don't mind telling you, this scares me but because of that I know I'm on the right track. I'm excited to start this journey. It might not be perfect, and I'm learning to be OK with that!
I’ve always loved being in the kitchen. Cooking and baking have been my creative passions since I was a little girl. Sure, in those days it was mostly about sprinkles and chocolate. Now, it’s about flavours that light up the taste buds, and knowing that I’m feeding my family with nutrient-dense foods that will fuel us daily.
It hasn’t always been that way though because like so many, I was trying to juggle it all – a business, a family, a household – and while I survived each day, I was not thriving. There were days when it felt like I was juggling bowling balls. I finally came to the realization that I had to make some changes, as my health and well-being were suffering. I decided to try a superfood nutrition system that my friend had been using. She had incredible energy and she lit up a room and quite frankly, I just needed a little bit of that in my life again. I had tried diets in the past, cutting out so many different ingredients, losing some weight, but feeling miserable and lethargic. I had joined the masses who started each year off with a vow to make changes, get healthy and become more active and then failed to sustain my results when I was unable to continue the new and not so healthy habits. I knew that in order to get the results that I desperately needed, I would have to do something that I’d never done before.
It turned out that flooding my body with quality nutrients on a regular basis, rather than skipping meals because I was too busy, was the key that opened the floodgates of energy. Within days of getting started, I was waking up feeling rested for the first time in years. It was in that moment that I realized how truly exhausted I had been. It turns out that fueling my metabolism with the proper balance of macronutrients and the right quantity of micronutrients gave me the energy to work out before the family woke up, release some weight and inches, improve my productivity through my workday and at the end of a long day in the kitchen, I had the energy to be there for my family, rather than flopped on the couch.
We’ve all heard that in-flight safety spiel whenever you travel – “in the event of emergency, put your oxygen mask on first” – and it actually has a place in everyday life too. In the beginning, taking care of myself first felt like a selfish move, but in fact it turned out to be the very best decision I could have made for our family. I learned that restrictive diets don’t work for the long term and that by creating a lifestyle that I could manage daily, I was not only taking care of myself, but also my family in a much more calm and effective way. I found a system that is truly sustainable for a healthy lifestyle that lasts a lifetime and has achieved results for thousands - no matter their age, weight loss or other health-related goals.
As a personal chef for more than 14 years, my passion and motto was to help people eat right and live well. Now my focus is on helping you solve what you should eat, how you can prepare it with ease and receive the maximum benefits from the quality of the nutrients you are feeding your body. You are what you eat, and if you consume too much “crap”, you will eventually feel like that too. When you nourish your body with what it needs on a daily basis, it’s amazing how you will feel yourself thriving.
It’s interesting to look back now since I made changes to my health because it’s easy to forget where you’ve been and what lessons have been learned along the journey. My goal here is to help you to nourish and thrive too. My goal is to help you see that there are simple changes that you can make to help you feel your best. My goal is to show you that there is way to find balance and ease, enjoy what you’re eating and develop your own strategies that help you create a lifestyle that’s empowering you.