Difference Between Plant Based and Vegan

Hello everyone,

I don’t know about you, but with the movement growing so much, I am often SO confused about all of the terms out there.  Should you be “vegan?” Should you be “plant based?” What about “whole food plant based?”  Ahhhhh!!!

In today’s video I quickly address what these terms mean and if being “vegan” is actually healthy.

Here is the link.  I hope that you enjoy it.

Could you do me a favor? Will you please subscribe to my Youtube channel while you are there?  I have some fun topics coming your way and want to make sure that you don’t miss out.

Thank you for all of your continued support!

<3, April

Stuffed Spaghetti Squash Recipe

Hello everyone,

Happy Fall!  I don’t know about you but this is my favorite time of the year for food.  I love warm meals and the comfort of pumpkin and squash recipes. It is a wonderful time to try new recipes and to turn on those ovens to warm the house.

We made this incredible recipe, originally from the Forks Over Knives Magazine (and altered it a bit), and I wanted to share it with you.  This will be going on my favorite list to eat time and time again.  I hope you enjoy it at much as we did.

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Stuffed Spaghetti Squash with Lentil Marinara (serves 2)

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium spaghetti squash halved and seeds removed
  • 12 oz. brown lentils, rinsed and drained (canned)
  • 1 cup marinara sauce
  • 6 oz. Yukon gold potatoes, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened, unflavored plant-milk (I used almond)
  • 2 Tbsp. nutritional yeast
  • 1 1/2 tsp. white wine vinegar
  • 1 small clove garlic, minced (the more garlic, the better, in my opinion)
  • 1/4 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper, ground
  • 1 Tbsp. of fresh basil leaves, chopped

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.  Line a baking sheet with a silicon mat.  Place the squash halves, cut side down, on the baking sheet.  Bake for approximately 40 minutes, or until tender.
  2. In the meantime, in a bowl, stir together the lentils and marinara.
  3. Place potatoes in a steamer basket in a saucepan. Add water to saucepan and bring to a boil.  Steam the potatoes, covered, for approximately 10 minutes or until tender.  Let the potatoes cool.
  4. Place the cooled potatoes in a blender.  Add the plant milk, nutritional yeast, white wine vinegar, garlic, sea salt and pepper.  Cover and blend until you reach the desired, sauce consistency. Set the sauce aside.
  5. Remove the squash from the oven.  Turn squash halves over, scrape squash strands with a fork, and spoon in the lentil mixture.  Bake for another 20 minutes or until heated through.
  6. Warm the potato sauce and poor it on top of the squash halves.  Add the basil as a garnish or mix it in.
  7. Enjoy!

 

 

 

FREE CHALLENGE GROUPS start tomorrow! (For vegans and non-vegans)

Hello everyone,

Happy Sunday! I hope you are having a wonderful weekend!

Starting tomorrow, I am offering two FREE challenge groups every Monday!  They will both run for 7 days at a time and participants will have the opportunity to win some amazing prizes!

The first is a Go Vegan Challenge.  This challenge will be great for anyone who wants to go “cold-kale” for 7 days, for someone who wants to try new recipes, or for anyone who wants to eat more plants.  It’ll include a grocery list, recipes, easy vegan swaps, cooking demonstrations and support.

The second is for anyone who wants to Get Active For the Animals.  It will encourage participants to do something for the animals every day, for 7 days.  It’ll include a list of ways that you can advocate for the animals with large-scale organizations, at the grocery store, on social media or in restaurants.

Did I mention that both challenges are FREE????!  They will start on June 3rd and will run every week from now on.  You are welcome to participate week after week.

To sign up, simply click on the link below:

SIGN UP HERE!!!

Have a great day!  I cannot wait to work with you! ❤

Raw Till Four: My Five Day Experiment With This Diet

Hello everyone,

I hope that you are having an amazing week!  I am so sorry that it has been so long but I was having some issues with my website.  The problem has been resolved and I am back!!

During my absence, I did some experimenting with a diet called Raw Till 4.  Although I was feeling pretty good prior to this challenge, I was also feeling a bit sluggish.  I had heard that this way of eating increased your energy, so I thought that I would give it a go.

Anyway, here is my video that documents my journey with Raw Till 4.  I explain why I took on this challenge, what I ate and how I felt after 5 days on this plan.  You may be surprised.

Please make sure to subscribe while you are there and let me know what you think.  Have you ever tried eating a raw diet? I would love to hear from you! ❤

Is it Possible to get Protein Without Eating Meat?

I always knew that I loved animals and never, ever wanted to eat them.  However, being a personal trainer, I often worried about not getting enough protein as a vegan. I would go a few months without eating meat and then someone would ask me, “But where do you get your protein?!”  I would let my mind convince me that I was dying from a protein deficiency and would start eating chicken again.

Because eating meat did not align with my morals, I finally took time to do some research and I found that it IS absolutely possible to get protein without eating meat!  And two years later, I am still feeling great and will never go back to eating animal protein again.IG image 1.png

Here is the good news!  Every food that we eat (minus oils) contains protein, so if you are eating enough calories you will absolutely get enough protein.  And protein from plants doesn’t contain all of that yucky stuff that meat does: no saturated fat, no cholesterol, no hormones that increase IGF-1.  Plus, plant protein contains fiber (something that meat doesn’t contain at all) and isn’t inflammatory!  In addition, plant protein doesn’t increase your chances of getting heart disease, type 2 diabetes, cancer, or kidney issues like meat does.  It’s an all around WIN!!!!!

Unknown-3.jpeg***This guy doesn’t have to worry about protein…and all he eats is PLANTS!!!!!

So, how much protein does a person need?  The recommendation for adults is 0.4 grams of protein per pound of healthy body weight.  It is absolutely easy to satisfy this need with a plant based diet.  Simply make sure to eat enough calories and to load up on whole plant based foods.  In addition, here are some foods that contain more protein than their plant based friends:

*Black beans: 7.6 grams of protein (per 1/2 cup cooked)

*Garbanzo beans: 7.5 grams of protein (per 1/2 cup cooked)

*Kidney beans: 8.1 grams of protein (per 1/2 cup cooked)

*Lentils: 8.9 grams of protein (per 1/2 cup cooked)

*Seitan: 22.5 grams of protein (3 ounces)

*Tofu: 10-20 grams of protein (firm usually contains more protein but varies from brand                 to brand)

*Peanuts: 8.6 grams of protein (1/4 cup)

*Almonds: 7.3 grams of protein (1/4 cup)

*Quinoa: 4.0 grams of protein (1/2 cup cooked)

*Potato: 4.5 grams of protein (1 baked)

*Peas: 4.5 grams of protein (1/2 cup)

PLANT PROTEIN

Above are some of my favorite sources.

Other sources include edamame, nuts and seeds, nut milks, plant based protein powders, whole grains and vegetables.

I hope that helps a bit and shows you that it IS absolutely possible and beneficial to get protein without eating meat.

For even more information, I recommend reading Proteinaholic by Garth Davis, M.D.  It is also available on audio book and is absolutely GAME CHANGING!

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Have a great day and I would love to hear from you!!!

What is your favorite plant based source for protein??? Leave a comment below.

 

 

 

How to Eat Out as a Vegan

Hello everyone and happy Friday!

Since the weekend is approaching, I thought that it would be a great time to discuss how to eat out as a vegan.  Honestly, this was something that I was hesitant about when I first made the transition, but we have found it easier (and more fun!) than ever!

First, because I have readers in many different parts of the world, I would recommend downloading the App “Happy Cow” on your phone (you can also pull up their website).  This is a fabulous resource; all you have to do is type in your zip code, and it will tell you all of the vegan restaurants in your area.

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Second, I highly recommend studying the menu of the restaurant you will be visiting before you go.  Most places have vegan menus or vegan options.  However, you can also look at the ingredients in meals and stay away from eggs, meat, dairy, cream, gelatin, honey, fish, whey, chicken stock, bone broth, etc.  If you have a difficult time choosing something, don’t be afraid to ask your server for help.  You may need to explain what “vegan” is to them, but they should be happy to offer suggestions.  If you get really stuck, stick to the basics like a salad or baked potato (no butter).

Some of our favorite places to dine in or pick up food from are:

*Rubios (nothing like a veggie burrito or veggie bowl.  Stay away from the chipotle cream sauce though)

*Chipotle (we love their Sofritas!  Add those to a burrito or a veggie bowl.  Do not add cheese or sour cream)

*Veggie Grill (enough said!)

*On the Border (ask your host/hostess for the “vegan” menu)

*Sushi Lounge (we have found that sushi is incredibly easy to make vegan.  You can order all kinds of vegetable rolls, sushi rice, miso soup, edamame)

*California Homemades (this is for all of my local friends.  They offer a full vegan menu)

*Jimbos (order all kinds of vegan sandwiches and sides from their deli menu daily.  They also have an enormous, salad bar and smoothies)

*Craft and Taco (this is also for my local friends.  They offer a vegan taco menu)

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If all else fails, stick with bean burritos at Mexican restaurants, pasta and marinara at Italian restaurants and veggie stir fry at Chinese restaurants.

I hope that helps a little!  Please contact me if you need more assistance.  Also, I would love to hear from you.  Where are your favorite, vegan options for dining or taking out?