A Day in the Life

This past Thursday, I provided a tour at my favorite health food store in St. Petersburg, Rollin' Oats. The tour was "A Day in the Life of a Foodie and Dietitian". I had SO much fun engaging and teaching the participants why and how I follow a life of healthy and delicious living on a typical day. I thought the information provided at the tour would be a perfect post! Although I share a lot of this information in my What I Ate Wednesday posts, today I wanted to focus on the WHY behind a lot of what I eat and drink throughout the day. What I eat and drink on a daily basis comes down to three main factors:

Health. Providing nourishment to each cell in my body is incredibly important to me. This makes me feel radiant and beautiful to know that I am giving my body what it needs to function as optimally as possible. I truly believe we can fix health issues and live the life we desire to through what we put in our body (and on our body, too!)

Taste. I don't care how healthy something is, if it doesn't taste good I won't do it. Period. Satisfaction in what we eat is at the core of  intuitive eating.

Mindful eating. Intuitive eating. Whatever you want to call it, each day has basic practices that I follow but also varies depending on what my body is telling me. I don't believe in counting calories, following a certain diet (unless medically necessary) or avoiding certain foods. I eat how my body tells me to.

Throughout the tour, I emphasized each of these factors, because again- these are the three most important factors I believe in creating a lifetime of healthy living. Health. Taste. Mindfulness.

So what does a typical day look like?

I believe a morning routine is VITAL in establishing a healthy lifestyle and sets the tone for the entire day. I will do a more in depth post on my personal morning routine soon, but I did mention it here. Also see my sister's post on a morning routine here, and another great post by Nutrition Stripped on her morning routine here.

I wake up early. Like at 4:45-5am most days. As soon as I wake up, I immediately drink a quart (4 cups) of warm water. I also have a shot of diluted apple cider vinegar. I use both of these to 'encourage' my bowels to wake up. Going to the bathroom on a daily basis is vital in eliminating toxins from our body. I was taught in school that it is normal for some people to not go but every 2-3 days. I disagree. I think this is a result of the Standard American Diet and if you look at practices, like aruvedic recommendations (which has been established for THOUSANDS of years) elimination of bowels and healthy digestive system is a huge component. A lot of what I do on a daily basis is to encourage this as our health starts in our gut.

After my water and shot, I have coffee. I drink my version of bulletproof coffee, Jacked Up Java. Black coffee bothers my stomach, so this recipe allow me to drink coffee without the pain, plus the recipe contain heaps of health benefits and "superfoods" (read the specific post linked above to find out more). If I don't have coffee, I have a matcha latte. Another "superfood" which is basically green tea on steriods. Tons of antioxidants and a decent amount of caffeine as well.

After enjoying my morning drinks, and sometimes a piece of fruit like a banana (for pre-workout fuel), I workout. My workout varies on the day but here lately is either weight lifting (I do this 3x/week) or BUTI yoga. I have also been doing more yin yoga lately and have been enjoying not always going "balls to the wall" when I work out!

As soon as I finish working out, I take a shower and then enjoy my breakfast.

Favorites include my smoothie bowl recipe, zoats recipe, and loaded oatmeal topped with peanut butter and cacao nibs. Here lately I have been loving savory breakfasts with eggs, like a roasted sweet potato with avocado and eggs. My breakfast is one of my largest meals of the day. Since I work out in the morning, I also make sure my breakfast contains a healthy dose of carbohydrates and protein to replenish glycogen stores and help my muscles repair and rebuild.

Throughout the morning, I sip on warm water (which is easier on the digestive tract compared to cold water) and often add lemon slices, which adds more vitamin C to my diet, tastes great and also aids in digestion.

Lunch is usually a bunch of items that I food prepped earlier that week. I truly believe food prepping is a huge component on making healthy living REALISTIC. The reality is most of us don't have time to cook each meal from scratch, myself included. I prefer to have a lunch that is heavy in produce, and often eat salads at this time. Since it is usually a big bowl of lots of vegetables, it is best to eat this at lunch when our digestive system is working most efficiently. If you know you are going to have a heavier meal, this would also be the time of the day to do just that.

With each meal, I try to include some form of probiotics. At  lunch, I often make my salad dressings with apple cider vinegar (which is actually a prebiotic, food for the bacteria). This is also often a time when I drink kombucha. Probiotics are HUGE in having a healthy digestive system. But they are also linked to so much more, read more about that here. After lunch, I almost always have chocolate in some form. Like my paleo & vegan fudge, dark chocolate covered espresso bites or 4 ingredient peanut butter cups. It satisfies me and that is SO important. Plus bitter foods, like raw chocolate (i.e. cacao powder/nibs) or very dark chocolate (I usually consume 85% dark chocolate) is recommended with meals to help aid in digesting food. Win, win! Other bitter foods include fennel/licorice, citrus fruits, dill, ginger and peppermint.

Snacks vary throughout the day. Some days I have one snack, other days I have 3-4 snacks. It truly depends on what my body is telling me it needs. Snacks are sometimes simple like a handful of nuts, a hardboiled egg or a piece of fruit. Other times I need a lot more, so I choose energy bites, half a sandwich or a huge loaded sweet potato. Ask your body, what do you truly need? I find by asking I truly honor my body.

Dinner, again is a wide variety of options, but generally it includes a protein, starch and veggies. What I think differs here, compared to the Standard American Diet, is how I divide my plate at mealtime. Because I eat a large breakfast and lunch and snacks throughout the day, dinner is a lighter meal with an emphasis on vegetables. I truly believe that produce should be the bulk of our diet and I like for the vegetables to take up at least half of my plate at dinnertime.

Some recipe favorites for dinner include kombucha marinated chicken with roasted potatoes and roasted veggies, shrimp quinoa pad thai and turmeric chicken tenders with winter squash and sauteed kale.

Almost every night after dinner I (usually) have a nighttime snack and turmeric milk (recipe here from Meg at Root for Food). Turmeric is one of the most potent forms of curcumin in our diets, a powerful anti-inflammatory compound. Turmeric milk is by far one of my favorite ways to include this spice in my diet. Priming your body for sleep is crucial to good quality sleep. I use to be a TERRIBLE sleeper. But I started forming a nighttime routine and it has made a huge difference (here's my sister's nighttime routine for inspiration). Sipping on turmeric milk is a delicious part of my nightly routine!

Throughout the day, I  drink A LOT of water. A minimum of a gallon per day, often times a lot more. I also often drink herbal teas like ginger, peppermint or sweeter teas like cocao spice when I am craving some flavor. I will add lemon slices to my water too, especially in the morning. As mentioned above, I usually have one cup of coffee, one cup of matcha (on days I don't drink coffee) and kombucha usually 3-4x/week. As far alcohol goes I LOVE craft beer and red wine. On the weekends I might have 1-2 beers or glasses of wine. Sometimes I drink (a lot) more than that, but that is on special occasions rather than a weekly occurrence.

So there you have it! A day in the life of a foodie and dietitian. Who thinks health, satisfaction and intuitive eating are the core of both loving your body and loving what you eat. Food is not the enemy. Food is medicine. Food is pleasurable and satisfying. Food provides your body with all that you need to be healthy, if you listen.

If you have any specific questions or you would like more specific help with creating your own "day in the life" that optimizes health, taste and mindfulness email me. I will soon be announcing more on this...but I (and my business partner, soon to be announced!) are taking clients for early 2017. We would love to help YOU feel beautiful, radiant, energized and most importantly at peace with food.

Your turn: Share below something that you do on a daily basis to feel radiant, beautiful and energized!