Thursday, January 5, 2017

Day 5 of Clean Eating in 2017: Featuring 3 cool recipes

Hello, everyone.

I woke up this morning excited about this vegan cleanse. I have already felt amazing with a boost of energy, satiety, and overall great feeling that I am doing something good for my health and well-being. Hope you are sticking to it and feeling wonderful as well.

In this post, I want to give you an update on my meals, provide you with some recipes and resources, and let you know what I've learned so far.

See below for my meal breakdown since we last left off:

Jan. 2

  • Oatmeal with bananas and mixed berries
  • Bengal Spice tea (featured drink- see recipe below)


  • Chickpea mixed green salad
  • Lentil patties
  • Tomato slices
  • Berry banana fruit bowl

  • Repeated lunch menu (ate leftovers)

Jan. 3


  • Pinto bean soup with avocado slices
  • Sliced green apples with peanut butter-honey dip

  • Zucchini pasta (featured meal-see recipe below)
  • Red cabbage/bell pepper sauté
  • Kale with Pinto beans

  • Ramen with portabella mushrooms, bean sprouts, and seaweed
  • Tomato slices

Jan. 4


  • Pinto bean soup
  • Tabbouleh
  • Hibiscus iced tea

  • Okra lentil soup
  • Mixed green salad
  • 100% fresh (and organic) cranberry juice

Jan. 5


  • Peanut butter, oat, granola mix
  • Half of a banana
  • Cranberry Chia drink (featured drink-see recipe below)

This post will be sent out before lunch time. So, I'll fill you in on lunch and more on the next post.
Featured recipes
Bengal Spice tea- This delicious tea is AMAZING. I consider it to be my new favorite hot drink of choice. It is great as a breakfast tea, can follow dinner, or be enjoyed before bedtime. No worries, this is an herbal tea so no caffeine included.

Per the tea box, this tea includes the following ingredients: cinnamon, roasted chicory, roasted carob, natural spice and vanilla flavors, ginger, cardamom, black pepper, cloves, and nutmeg.
BONUS TIP: My secret to taking this tea to the next level is to first add about half a teaspoon each of ground cinnamon and cardamom and a teaspoon of honey to a cup. Then, I add a small amount of boiling water and mix it all together. I then let that sit for 30-60 seconds and then I add the tea bag and fill the cup with boiling water. That’s it! There you have it…yummy goodness in a cup.
Zucchini pasta-This dish is so healthy, simple, and delicious, you will be amazed. All you have to do is grate 1-2 zucchinis. If it is organic, then it is fine to keep the outer layer. If not, I’d peel it and toss it out. Once you grate most the zucchini, all you will have left are the seeds. Feel free to save this pare and store in your fridge for another recipe for future use.
Heat up a medium-sized flat pan and then add the zucchini to the pan. Add about a tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil, sprinkle in some dried rosemary and basil, lightly add some fresh ground black pepper and sea salt. After about 5-7 minutes, turn off the heat. And voila…you have zucchini pasta. Transfer your pasta to a dish and enjoy! It goes great with mixed veggies and/or a mixed green salad.
Cranberry Chia drink- This drink is so delicious and is packed with numerous health benefits. The health benefits of chia are too many to name. Learn more here. Cranberry juice also has great benefits, including being a natural remedy for UTI, detoxing our bodies, cancer fighting properties, and more.  
To make this drink, add 3 tablespoons of organic, raw chia seeds to a cup. Pour in enough filtered water to fill the cup. Seal the cup and leave in the refrigerator overnight.
For the cranberry juice, fill a medium-sized bowl with organic cranberries. Then, add the cranberries to a medium-sized pot. Add about 4 cups of filtered water to the pot. Let it heat on the medium-high setting. Once the water has come to a boil and the cranberries have opened up, turn off the heat. Let it cool for about 5-7 minutes. Strain the liquid from the cranberry mix using a strainer. What you will have left is fresh, delicious, 100% organic cranberry juice. Feel free to add honey or agave syrup and give it a good stir. Add ice to your liking. You have yummy cranberry juice. For the remaining pulp, you can throw it out or use it as cranberry jam for another recipe.
The next day once you take out your chia seed mix from the fridge, you can make your cranberry-chia drink. All you have to do is add one part chia mix and one part cranberry juice to a cup (1:1 ratio). Delicious…enjoy!
Helpful resources
I have found the following resources to be helpful as I source menus, recipes, and general vegan inspiration:
Please let me know if you have any questions, would like specific recipes, ideas, or more. Feel free to comment below. Let’s keep it fresh, healthy, and natural!

Monday, January 2, 2017

Jump Starting 2017 with a Cleanse

Happy New Year (2017)!

After a few years on hiatus from this blog, I AM BACK! Excited about getting back to what I love: writing, sharing thoughts, and empowering others.

So, I have decided to jump start 2017 by eating a vegan-influenced diet starting with the first 31 days of the year. I am thrilled to share this journey with others by swapping meal ideas, recipes, food photos, and helpful resources. This will be a fun journey filled with a commitment to self-love, health and wellness, and all around good eating.

For six years, I was a vegetarian and a portion of that I was actually a pescatarian (ate fish as my main source of protein). I had decided to re-introduce meat back into my diet in 2013. Many people ask me why I did not remain vegetarian. At that time, I was traveling to Malawi for an extended stay and knew that being vegetarian in a resource-limited environment would pose to be a huge challenge. So, I decided to eat meat again. Weeks before my trip, I announced to my GI system that carnivore-land is where I was returning. First stop, Chipotle. In two words. BIG. MISTAKE. My favorite item at Chipotle is the barbacoa burrito. However, my GI system did not agree. Unfortunately, I paid for it that night and the next morning. Needless to say, I learned to take gradual steps into getting back into eating meat. Since 2013, I have been eating meat, but more so in moderation. In the last few months, I have been incorporating more vegan dinners. 

Today, I am embarking on a new journey. The next 30 days will be all about indulging in vegan delights. Yummy. I will enter the land of avocado, mushrooms, hummus, mixed green salads, berries, watermelon, mint, lemon, eggplant, arugula. Doesn't that sound amazing! Music to my ears. The world of fruits, veggies, grains, and seeds are plentiful. It is all about having the right mindset.

I have decided to take on the G-BOMBS approach. Familiar with this concept? If not, check out the breakdown below:

G-BOMBS is an acronym (provided below) coined by Dr. Fuhrman, which describes a "nutritarian" lifestyle focused on eating foods that are cancer-fighting and have the most health benefits.
  • Greens (and grains)
  • Beans
  • Onions
  • Mushrooms
  • Berries (and other fruits)
  • Seeds 
I plan to avoid sugar and will stick to the natural sugars in fruity. I am okay with organic honey though. Feel free to cut out or incorporate honey. I know that most vegans do not. I will aim to stick to organic options namely for the dirty dozens.

 Drink options I will stick to are as follows:
  • Filtered water
  • Fruit-infused water
  • Sparkling water
  • Herbal teas (found an amazing one called Bengal Spice mix...will share more in a future post)
Below is my meal breakdown:

NOTE: I got an early start with clean eating and began with a healthy NYE dinner. You are welcome to try some of these meals below are tweak according to your preference.

Dec. 31st Dinner
  • Eggplant tacos
  • Lemon-mint couscous
  • Mixed greens salad

Jan. 1st

  • Sliced green apples
  • Organic brown rice cake with organic peanut butter and honey
  • Smoothie bowl with granola
  •  Bengal spice (not pictured here)

AM Snack
  • Sliced carrots, celery and banana

  • Lentil soup topped with avocado slices, cilantro, and green onions (for 2 ppl)
  • Green mixed salad

PM Snack
  • Granola (not pictured here)
  • Lentil and guacamole tacos
  • Carrots
  • Banaba berry mix fruit cup (for 2ppl)
  • Green tea

I would love to hear what you ate, meal plans, recipes, and more. Please let me know if you have any questions or are interested in any recipes of the meal items mentioned in this post. Feel free to comment below. Let’s keep it going!