Delicious Vegan Thanksgiving

GardeinRoast

Thanksgiving is just around the corner; as we gather with friends and family, let’s remember to be grateful for all of the wonderful blessings that we have in our lives. The holidays are a great time to appreciate everything that we have in life. And of course they’re also the perfect time to enjoy lots of delicious food together! Here are some of my favorite Thanksgiving foods that I hope you’ll try. Whether you’re having a 100% plant-based meal or just want to add some of these dishes, I encourage you to try something new this year. Enjoy <3.

Gardein Holiday Roast

Here’s a Gardein Holiday Roast. I actually prefer this to the Tofurky roast that I’ve had in the past. It’s easier to cook, too. All you have to do is put it in the oven for 60-70 minutes. It comes with two packets of gravy, so you can use one for the roast and one for mashed potatoes. Try it!

GardeinHolidayRoast

Roasted Sweet Potatoes

In addition to mashed potatoes, I often roast sweet potatoes. Sometimes I add organic cherry tomatoes when I’m roasting them, but this year I will add cinnamon, a bit of coconut oil, and some chopped nuts at the end. If you’re a fan of raisins and nutmeg, you can add those as well. If you’re going oil-free, skip the coconut oil :).

Sweetpotato

Vegan Shepherd’s Pie

A Shepherd’s pie is also a great addition to a Thanksgiving meal. This one is easy to make and absolutely delicious!

Shepherdspie

Sautéed Green Beans

Green beans always make an appearance for Thanksgiving at my house. This is a simple recipe that doesn’t take much time to prepare and cook. And it’s yummy!

GreenBeans

Sautéed Brussels Sprouts

Brussels sprouts are delicious, but be sure not to overcook them. Here’s a great recipe that I enjoy. You can make quinoa or you can enjoy the green beans and Brussels sprouts with mashed potatoes – yum!

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Vegan Tomato Basil Soup

I would recommend having a warm soup to enjoy with your meal, as well as some fresh salad. Here’s a recipe for a delicious tomato basil soup that I love. I like it better with coconut milk instead of a potato, so grab some coconut milk while you’re out shopping!

VeganTomatoBasilSoup

 

Dessert

I may save the sweet potatoes to enjoy for dessert. Or I may pick up a slice of vegan pie from Native Foods in Culver City – we’ll see! Whatever you end up making for Thanksgiving, enjoy it! Have a wonderful time with your family and friends and remember to keep these tips for not overeating on Thanksgiving handy! Here’s to your health and happiness! Xo

7 Tips to Help You Stop Overeating during the Holidays

AutumnGarden

The holidays are the perfect time for us to gather with our families and friends, give thanks, and cherish the fulfilling relationships that we have in our lives. Unfortunately, the holidays have also become a time to overindulge in our favorite foods – so it’s great to be mindful about what we’re really celebrating, and how we can make a solid plan to prevent us from eating too much during this time of the year. We don’t have to gain weight this holiday season and then try to lose it come January 1, 2015. We also don’t have to starve ourselves, or deprive ourselves of foods we love. We can enjoy our favorite foods in a way that is healthy, especially if we try these few tips!

1. Eat Breakfast
You’ve heard it a million times: “Breakfast is the most important meal of the day.” Eating breakfast every day can help stop you from binging the rest of the day, especially if you have a dinner or special event to attend or host. If you’re hosting an event, I know you have lots to do: cook, clean, entertain guests, etc. but trust me, taking the time to eat a good, healthy breakfast will keep you full so you don’t overeat later. Try having a bowl of oatmeal with a nut butter, some cinnamon, and a natural sweetener like maple syrup. This should keep you full for a bit. You can also have a slice of toast with a nut butter and a warm cup of tea. If you are gluten-free, just use gluten-free oats or gluten-free toast.  If you really want a filling breakfast, make a delicious tofu scramble and load up on vegetables (just be sure to use organic, non-gmo tofu :)).Whatever you love to have that is healthy and filling will be perfect.

2. Stay Hydrated
Sometimes we mistaken our thirst for hunger, so be sure to drink water throughout the day to prevent you from snacking, when all your body really needs is some water. A good rule of thumb to follow is that we should drink half our weight (pounds) in water (ounces). So if you weigh 140 pounds, for example, you should aim to drink 70 ounces of water a day. If that sounds like too much, try to work your way up to this – do not chug water just to get the recommended ounces! Instead, remember to stay hydrated at a rate that feels right to you.

3. Be Mindful When You’re Eating
Chew slowly and enjoy your food. On special occasions, such as Thanksgiving, I know it’s tempting to grab a gigantic plate and pile food high, but you’re not doing yourself a favor by doing so. Instead, reach for a decent sized plate, and fill it once. When you’re done eating from that plate, you’re done eating. As always, eat your vegetables! I’m sure you’ll have plenty of options, so eat salad, green beans, sweet potatoes, and other healthy options that are available – and then add more decadent items to your plate – in small portions. You’ll feel better if you eat healthy food, I promise.

4. Stay out of the Kitchen
It’s tempting to linger around the kitchen and look for treats. If your family is anything like mine, you’ll likely find tons of goods, so do yourself a favor and stay out!

5. Eat One Dessert
When you’re attending a special event, or hosting a dinner, pick one delicious looking dessert to enjoy and say no to the rest. Have a friend to split the dessert with you? Even better.

6. Exercise
Maintain your workout routine, even on days when you have parties to attend or host. Try getting a workout in before everyone arrives or you have to head to someone’s place for dinner. A simple walk or a 30 minute yoga session would be great. Treat yourself to an activity you love so you can have time for yourself and so that you can keep your body moving – the last thing you want to do is overeat and sit on the couch all day – believe me, it’s not a good idea!

7. Get Some Rest
I know it’s tempting to skimp on sleep because you have so much to do during the holidays, or because you’ve been traveling to see family and friends, but try your best to get a decent night’s sleep. By doing so, you’re already giving yourself an advantage, because when we sleep well and for a good amount of time (aim for 7-8 hours a night), we naturally crave less unhealthy foods. When we don’t sleep enough, we release more of the hormone ghrelin, which tells our bodies that we are hungry and who wants that? And, as if that isn’t bad enough, when we don’t get enough sleep we produce less of the hormone leptin, which tells our bodies that we are full – talk about a healthy eating and living disaster! Plan your day so that you will get enough rest.

I hope that these tips will help you enjoy your favorite foods this holiday season, without overdoing it. If you want my ultimate guide to achieving your ideal weight, you’ll want to sign up for one of my amazing programs and get started right away! Don’t let the holidays get the best of your waistline, start losing weight now! Contact me and we’ll talk about which one of these programs is perfect for you!

Fall is Here!

Persimmon

                                 {I took this picture at the farmers’ market yesterday!}

Though it might be hard to tell (especially in Los Angeles), fall is finally here! This weekend it was 90 degrees and it felt more like an August day than an autumn day, but I tried to appreciate the warmth while it was here. It’s finally a bit cooler, but I’m still waiting for consistently cool temperatures – I want the weather to feel like it’s fall! I live in Los Angeles, so I don’t get to experience seasons the way that other people around the country and the rest of the world do, but I still love fall. I look forward to the leaves changing colors, my favorite TV shows returning, and switching from flip flops and tank tops to boots, sweaters, and scarves. There’s something about fall that makes me feel more focused; it makes me feel like it’s time to reflect, turn inwards, and truly examine what is going on in my life. Am I happy? Am I fulfilled? Is my career turning out the way that I had hoped? These are just some of the questions that I have been pondering lately.

I recently created a vision board. I have it in my room and it’s brought me lots of happiness. If you’ve never made a vision board, try it. It’s a great way to put images and words that represent what you would like to have happen in your life. Now that we’re changing seasons, we can set new intentions and watch them unfold. If you’re looking for romance, for example, perhaps some images of your favorite fictional characters will make their way onto your board (Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy, anyone?). Or, if you’re trying to attract wealth, you can include images of hundred dollar bills or famous entrepreneurs. For me, the colder weather, the shorter days, and longer nights mean that there’s more time to write, read, and work and that’s okay by me.

This fall I want to really reach for the stars. I have so many goals in mind, so I’m breaking them down and taking each one step by step. If you’re like me, you need that extra reminder to breathe, slow down, and relax. Join me in setting new intentions for the season: Will you finally switch jobs? Are you trying to lose weight? Will you cook more? Spend less? Now is the time to try!