Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Pumpkin Cheesecake Bites {Dairy-Free & Grain-Free}

Dear Mark: Broth, Fasting, Coffee, and Metformin (and More)

CNC Macro Plans & Coaching FAQs

I love when readers reach out and ask questions about

CNC Macro Plans

! It’s one of my favorite topics to chat about and, obviously, I love talking all things food and nutrition, so it makes me especially happy when prospective clients want to learn more and work with me.

I’ve received a bunch of questions over the past few days about the 

Master Your Macro Challenge

and its

macro plans

, so I complied a number of frequently asked questions along with my response. I hope they answer some of your questions if you’re considering joining the challenge. And, of course, if you have any additional questions, send them my way! I’m more than happy to help!

What are macros?

Simply put, “macros” are macronutrients – the protein, carbohydrates, and fats that we obtain calories from. Here’s some additional information that sums them up nicely.

What is tracking macros all about?

Tracking macros (and flexible dieting) really isn’t a diet. It’s more of a lifestyle that considers your caloric needs with an appropriate range of macronutrients in mind. It’s a very flexible way of eating that gives you all sorts of awesome food freedom in your diet, but it’s not eating whatever you want all the time. Rather, it’s a way to incorporate foods into your diet that will allow you to maintain a healthy lifestyle without missing out on the foods you love. At the end of the day, tracking macros is all about making your aware of your food choices and helping you to make smarter ones based on what you are consuming daily.

I don’t eat meat. Will macros work for me?

Absolutely! You don’t need to follow a specific diet to track macros. You can be vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, AIP, low-carb, etc., and macros will still work for you. The thing is – if you don’t know how to hit your protein goal, for example, macros can be challenging. Working with a 

nutrition coach

 to address some of these personal challenges will teach you what you need to do, so you can go off on your own and track like a champ!

Do you do regular check-ins with clients?

Yes, we do weekly check-ins (sometimes more often depending on the client) via WhatsApp, a free voice messaging app for both the 4- and 8-week macro plans. It’s a great way to really get to know clients and their challenges. Plus, it’s so much easier to chat when they have questions or concerns. Clients also have the opportunity to send along screenshots of their tracking in MyFitnessPal for feedback.

What app to clients use to track their macros?

Our clients use MyFitnessPal. Once you fill out our intake questionnaire, your coach will calculate your macro goals for both workout and rest days. You will then enter them into MyFitnessPal and keep track on your own – kind of like points in Weight Watchers, but your tracking protein, carbs, and fat grams.

How do you figure out my macros? 

We have a handy calculation tool that takes into account your weight, body fat percentage, activity level, exercise type, occupation, body type, and more as a starting point for working together. At the end of the day, it’s just a calculation, so there’s a lot of back-and-forth in the coaching relationship to figure out the right ratio for you. Your coach will make adjustments to your macros as needed. In addition to fat loss goals, we also consider energy levels, workouts, sleep, stress, and other related lifestyle factors when working with our clients.

Do I need to “hit my macros” everyday for them to work?

The closer the better, but no. Personally, I don’t think I’ve ever “hit my macros” on the dot! 🙂 Macros are not the be-all, end-all of nutrition. Really, they’re just a framework for helping you make informed decisions about what’s right for you. The last thing I want to happen is having a client become obsessed with the numbers. Macros are simply a tool to help you be successful. I typically tell clients that coming within 10g for protein and carbs and 5g for fat is close enough!

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Should I add back the calories I burn during exercise?

If your goal is to lose body fat, then no you should not add them back in – unless you’re training for an endurance event (i.e. half marathon, marathon) and then working with one of our nutrition coaches will help you determine your calorie needs. Here’s why we don’t recommend adding back exercise calories. When you get your macro goals, the calculation has already taken your exercise level into account. We figure out how many calories you’re burning while you exercise and factor that into your macros. If your goal is to lose weight, we then make sure you’re in a deficit, so when you hit your macros, you actually hit your calories with the numbers that you would be at while working out. For example, you just burned 300 calories at the gym and your calorie goal is 2,000 for the day. If you add those calories back, you’re eating 2,300 calories, so now you’re at maintenance or even above maintenance, which will not help you get to your goal.

Is there a difference between macro tracking and IIFYM (aka “If It Fits Your Macros”)?

They’re very similar, but IIFYM, at its core, basically says no foods are off limits as long as they fit into your daily macro goals. But like anything, there are people who abuse this flexibility and don’t do it properly. Sure, you can get ice cream and buffalo wings to fit your macros, but it’s not very healthy. Our coaches focus on food quality and emphasize whole, nutritious foods as much as possible. We’re actually a little crazy about veggies and fruit! 🙂 Of course, we’re never going to tell a client that they can’t have their favorite foods in their diet, but our ultimate goal is to have them fill their diet with as many healthy foods as possible first. Plus, in order to lose fat and build muscle, which is a common goal among our clients, you need a proper ratio of protein, carbs, micronutrients, and fiber in your diet. Nutrition and food quality are super important if you want to look and feel your best!

How much weight should I expect to lose per week while tracking my macros?

Everyone is different, but we typically aim for 0-1 pounds per week, which is safe and sustainable. I wish I could tell you that macros are some magical way of life that makes the weight fall right off, but our goal is always to help a client work towards their goals at a realistic pace while establishing consistent lifestyle habits. Plus, drastic weight loss never works – you’ll just gain it right back!

Why don’t you provide custom meal plans that tell me what to eat?

Our goal is always to TEACH clients how to eat a balanced diet with the help of macros as a guide/framework. We don’t want you to feel like you’re “on” or “off” the wagon when it comes to your diet, and this ALL or NONE mentally often leads to unhealthy habits. Balanced eating is not black and white, and we want to help you make a sustainable change by letting you take control of your food choices. Once you learn how macros can work for you, it becomes second nature and part of your lifestyle for the long-term!

I want to give this macro thing a try. What do I do now?

Awesome! Sign up for one of our macro plans. (The 4- and 8-week plans include one-on-one nutrition coaching.) Once you place your order, you’ll receive an email that includes our preliminary questionnaire. Fill this out and hit submit. Once we receive this information, your assigned coach will be in touch to get you started!

from Carrots 'N' Cake https://ift.tt/2BrvszZ

Clean Eating Cashew Alfredo Sauce Recipe

This clean eating cashew alfredo sauce is a wonderful dairy-free alternative for your next pasta night!

A cashew-based sauce might not sound very good to some of you, but I’m here to tell you it’s… Read more →

from The Gracious Pantry https://ift.tt/2rHLQYH

Monday, December 17, 2018

Focusing On My Gut Health Has Transformed My Life

Weekend Merriment

Happy holiday Monday! We’ve been cozied up at home for a loooong time. Between the 11 inches of snow and three days straight of cold rain, conditions were not favorable for outdoor exposure. I am itching for an outdoor walk so much!

On Friday night Thomas and cozied up with dinner and the second-to-last episode of This Is Us. T went to the grocery store on Friday afternoon and picked up some fresh mackerel for dinner. It was so nice to start the weekend with a stocked fridge! We usually do our grocery shopping on Sundays and so by Friday we’re usually out of most things.


This vibrating bouncer (that is a steal for $16!) has been saving us! Once I realized how much B like vibrations I ordered it, and he LOVES it!

Dinner was pan-fried mackerel with sautéed veggies and Whole Foods mac and cheese.

Breakfast the next morning was so good. A bran muffin from WF, plus a little omelet, fruit and OJ.

I got in a nice treadmill workout. We wrapped gifts. Did a few chores. Snuggled with B.

Lunch was a big kale salad with a slice of leftover pizza.

Mazen had a birthday party at Wine + Design. It was such a creative party idea for kids, and M loved it.

And his penguin is really good! (Haircut courtesy of Matt…!)

That afternoon we headed out to North Garden to celebrate Thomas’s dad’s birthday!

Merry reindeer

Merry scarf

Merry party favors

Merry cousins!

We had BBQ chicken, twice baked potatoes, roasted veggies and kale salad for dinner.

Plus this merry cake!!!

So much yummy frosting (Thomas donated some from his plate :mrgreen: ) – I couldn’t even finish it all (and that never happens!)

On Sunday we woke up to more rain. I had an English muffin breakfast sandwich with grapefruit for breakfast.

We did a family workout to Popsugar Fitness, had lunch at Bodos (yay for COLD salmon!), took Mazen shopping for his cousins’ Christmas gifts, and went to a fundraiser taco party!

Lynsie is raising money for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation and hosted a Taco Party to benefit the CFF with margs and a full taco bar for a bunch of our friends! She is an amazing cook and everything tasted delicious – especially her smoked crema! #KathEatsZeroTacos – just a big taco bowl/plate!!

Hope you guys have a great week : )

from Kath Eats Real Food https://ift.tt/2S7gLt0

Sunday, December 16, 2018

24 Days of Togetherness: Days 10 – 16

The holiday fun continues in the Haupert household! But, seriously, how is it already December X?! It’s been a fun few weeks to say the least, and I really love that this tradition adds so much to our daily lives during the most wonderful time of year. Here’s the next recap of our 24 Days of Togetherness activities!

DAY 10: Wear red and green.

I forgot to snap photos of Mal and Quinn’s outfits, but they both played along and wore red and green. Of course, it was the perfect opportunity to wear my Ugly Sweater sneakers from Brooks!

DAY 11: Drink eggnog.

I forgot to snap a photo during our drinking of eggnog, but it was sure delicious! 🙂

DAY 12: Visit Santa.

Once again, we visited the The Christmas Place in Abington to see Santa. The Santa there is super nice, and Quinn talked to him for quite awhile!

DAY 13: Buy a new Christmas tree ornament.

Michaelangelo was an easy choice!

DAY 14: Have a holiday Happy Hour.

Mal and I went out to Stars on Hingham Harbor for dinner and drinks. It was a fun night out for us!

DAY 15: Donate a toy to a local toy drive.

We actually ended up donating a number of toys this year, but Quinn picked out a LEGO Ninjago “Piranha Attack” set for a toy drive at the YMCA.

We were actually there for a lunch with Santa, so the timing worked out perfectly!

(Quinn gave Santa the sticker on his sleeve.)

DAY 16: Drink hot chocolate.

Along with our hot chocolate, we enjoyed some Buttery Sugar Holiday Cookies and Pepperminty Chocolate Holiday Cookies from Pamela’s, which are gluten-free, non-GMO, free from artificial additives, hydrogenated oils, and trans fats, and seriously delicious! The Buttery Sugar Cookies in particular, are easily the best gluten-free sugar cookies I’ve ever tried, and I know they’ll continue to be a part of our holiday celebrations in the future!

I recently partnered with Pamela’s, so their limited-edition holiday cookies came at the perfect time. I’m not eating a ton of gluten nowadays, so I loved enjoying a tasty gluten-free option with my family during our 24 Days of Togetherness. Plus, with all sorts of holiday gatherings on the horizon, the likelihood of a family member or a friend having a food allergy or a dietary restriction is pretty high, so it’s nice to have a few boxes of these cookies on hand so everyone can enjoy a treat.

Quinn absolutely loves the Buttery Sugar Cookies (he ate like 3), and Mal took a liking to the Pepperminty Chocolate Cookies (he loves the flavor combo of peppermint + chocolate). Not surprisingly, I loved both flavors (because I’m a cookie monster), and they were the perfect addition to our hot chocolate. (Photo below: I asked Quinn not to get cookie crumbs in my hair, which, of course, turned into the most ridiculous game ever. I’m pretty sure I had like half of a sugar cookie in my hair by the end of the night! Haha!)

Pamela’s has been crafting delicious gluten-free and non-GMO foods for 30 years, so you can count on them to source only high-quality ingredients and to maintain the strictest manufacturing standards. You can purchase these cookies for your holiday gatherings by visiting Amazon.com (click here for Buttery Sugar Cookies, and click here for Pepperminty Chocolate Cookies).

from Carrots 'N' Cake https://ift.tt/2ErpKRV