Thursday, December 29, 2016

Four Wishes for 2017

This post is brought to you by CJ Affiliate’s VIP Content Service. Thank you Lucky Brand for sponsoring this post. While this was a sponsored opportunity from Lucky Brand, all content and opinions expressed here are my own.

With the new year arriving in just a couple of days, I wanted to take a minute to chat about my goals for 2017. Ok, wellllll, when I started to write this blog post, my usual goals for the year turned more into wishes. It’s funny because I use to put so much stock into my goals for the new year. I’d devote a whole blog post to them, sometimes revise and review them at mid-year, and then evaluate what I accomplished or didn’t accomplish at the end of the year. Of course, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with this kind of goal-setting. I mean, it helped me achieve all sorts of great things over the past 8 years, but when I sat down to write a goals post for 2017, I didn’t have that same thought process as I did in previous years. But, it’s not like I don’t have any sort of drive for the new year. I actually think I’m more motivated that previous years, but I’m just taking a much more “relaxed” approach. (Maybe because things are so up-in-the-air/exciting?!) In the end, I came up with four simple wishes for 2017.

Good health

Wishing for good health is definitely my #1. Without good health, you truly have nothing… and, whoa, I’ve been there. Even thinking back to a year ago, I was in pretty rough shape. Remicade had stopped working and my immune system was so out of whack. I remember looking at my blood work after an appointment with my GI doctor and just crying big ol’ tears. I was so frustrated with my body and scared nothing would work. I really thought I would be sick forever. Thankfully, Entyvio kicked in and the second half of 2016 was a lot better. And, hopefully, it continues to work for me. I also hope that my family enjoys plenty of good health in 2017. We’ve dealt with so much in the past few years. I just want us all to stay healthy.

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Wearing: Lucky Brand Burnout Tank ($34.99) // Lolita Skinny Jean ($49.99) // Juliett Heel ($39.97)

And, obviously, good health makes me feel amazing both inside and out. I work from home, so I don’t always have the opportunity to dress up and look pretty, so I love when I’m feeling well enough to go out and enjoy myself. Lucky Brand totally fits my style in the sense that it’s fun, but casual at the same time with some serious style. I always feel more confident when I’m wearing something from Lucky Brand.

Good fortune

I’m also wishing for good luck and good fortune in the new year, especially with regard to Designed to Fit Nutrition. Kerrie and I have invested so much time, money, and energy into our business, and we have such great ideas and hopes for the future. (Seriously, the sky is the limit!!) We’re come such a long way already, and I only hope we continue to grow and develop DTFN.

I’ve heard that elephants are one of the most positive animal symbols and many cultures believe that they bring good fortune, so I’ve started to wear an Elephant Ring ($14.99) on the regular. I figured it couldn’t hurt in the luck department, and it’s just a fun piece to own. It definitely adds a bit of style to my wardrobe, and I love that it’s a constant reminder of my goals for the new year. Bring on 2017!

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Living more purposefully  

Not surprisingly, running two businesses and having only three days specifically devoted to work is a bit hectic. (Qman goes to daycare three days per week.) Most days, I’m up and running in the early hours and then working at night, on the weekends, and during nap times. Truthfully, I feel like I never stop working, and I almost always feel like I’m flying by the seat of my pants/like a chicken with its head cut off. But, I firmly believe if there’s a will, there’s a way, and I’m determined to make my work-life balance, uh, work. For me, it’s living and working with purpose. Having more direction. Making a game plan/schedule for my work days (and not just a never-ending To Do list). Working in my office instead of “exploding” all over the kitchen table. Separating my work from my personal life and setting boundaries, like not working at night or on the weekends. I have so many ideas of how to live with purpose and focus… I just need to make it happen now!

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Above: Lucky Brand Burnout Tank ($34.99) // Beaded Tank ($37.49)

It was a tough choice between these two tops from Lucky Brand (thank you to those of you who weighed in on Instagram), but I eventually picked the top on the left. The beautiful needlepoint floral print immediately caught my attention and then the spaghetti straps and strappy back ultimately sold me. It was the perfect top for showing off my CrossFit shoulders and back! 🙂

Simplify

My final wish for the new year actually stems from a conversation that I had with Mal a few weeks ago. We were driving home from somewhere with Quinn asleep in the backseat and things were just… quiet. In that moment, the two of us realized just how hectic our lives had become and we hadn’t had a calm moment like that in quite awhile. Usually, we’re going from one thing to the next and planning every second of our lives. We like being social and doing fun things, but I think the holiday season just magnified how insane our life had gotten. We both agreed that we wanted to slow down a bit and simply life in the new year: Scale back on events and activities, say no to things, focus on our family, spend more time at home, and live more purposely. This even applies to my wardrobe with regard to selecting pieces that transition well between seasons and outfits, like the beaded tank below. It can be worn causally or easily dressed up. Love!!

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*** FYI: Lucky Brand is offering an AMAZING $20 OFF COUPON right now and you can save up to 75% on their end of season clearance until January 11, 2017! Guys, be sure to hop on it for the best prices, and please tell your elephant-loving friends about the ring! 🙂

Question of the Day

What are your wishes for 2017?



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My Favorite Moments From 2016 – See Which Food Companies Are Dropping The Toxins!

We’ve come a long way Food Babe Army! 2016 was full of surprises and a lot of turmoil – but there was so much good to reflect on, these are some of my favorite moments of 2016… At a recent … Continued

The post My Favorite Moments From 2016 – See Which Food Companies Are Dropping The Toxins! appeared first on Food Babe.



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Dietary Trends: Are Popular Interests Inching toward Ancestral Wisdom?

Food trends printed on an old typewriterAs the calendar draws toward the close of another year, I’m inclined to take stock of where the Primal vision stands. Are people slowly warming to the idea of Primal eating (and living), or are we merely seeing inconsequential, lateral shifts within the same old confines of conventional grain-based, saturated fat-averse, dietary “wisdom”?

All right, all right. It’s fair to say that, without examining the numbers, the majority of people are still stuck in their same detrimental ways. But are the cracks in CW I noted a few years ago deepening and expanding? If we look closely enough, could there be a bit of whole-food common sense shining in there? Or is it just some refracted marketing gloss that catches the right angle from time to time? Or just wishful, starry-eyed delusion?

All good questions with their own claim on truth. Still, are there any substantive takeaways from 2016? And how are things shaping up for the next year at that? Let’s take a brief look.

2016 in Review: Where did Grok fit in?

Last month, Google released its report on 2016 Food Trends. (PDF) With its window into public curiosity, it gives us a refreshing take on how the (Internet-connected) world views food, highlighting popular interests rather than dietitian recommendations. And while I’m always a little hesitant to jump into the brain of your average calorie-counting consumer, it’s useful to get an overall idea of what people are thinking with regards to food.

For one, it appears “gluten-free” is dropping in the charts. With Google reporting a decline in searches for “Gluten Free Cupcakes” and “Wheat Free Bread,” it appears that perhaps the average Joe/Jane has lost interest—at least in non-gluten bake goods. (Somehow I’m not too optimistic that they’re being replaced with the likes of Primal stew and Big A$$ salads.)

There was also a significant decline in interest for classic “healthy” examples of kale chips, quinoa, and agave nectar (sorry, there’s no such thing as guilt-free).

But enough of the “has-beens”…. What about the up-and-comings of the great Google food query?

It appears that the world’s love affair with pasta, bread and rice continues to flourish. Of the 7 Sustained Risers of the 2016 Google food search, 3 fit the pasta category (ramen, rigatoni and linguine), 2 relate to wheat and baked goods (empanadas, bundt cakes), and 1 was a rice-heavy (but admittedly delicious) Korean dish (bibimbap). I have to say that, minus the bibimbap, I’m a little disappointed.

Uncured bacon was a slightly promising trend. I wouldn’t have put that at the top of the concern list, but maybe beggars can’t be choosers.

Still, credit to Internet searchers everywhere, there were some genuine bright spots. According to Google, the new rising stars of the food world include turmeric, jackfruit and cauliflower rice. I’ve shared my thoughts on turmeric recently. I hear jackfruit is a superfood contender—and a sustainable food source to boot. Cauliflower rice has long been a staple for many in the Primal/paleo and low-carb crowds.

So, a few wins here, and a few losses there. I like to think that we all got something out of the trendy gluten-free stint though. While searches might be down, I don’t think there’s any going back to total denial at this point. And from where I’m sitting, the market has been changed by gluten-free “fadism”—for the better. (Just don’t fall for the gluten-free sugar.)

The “experts'” crystal ball…Hints for 2017?

Despite some of the aforementioned dietary pivoting, Americans will plunge into 2017 with a bit more food know-how under their belts. While the “gluten-free” movement may appear to be losing some steam, there’s undeniably a growing recognition of food as medicine.

Four of the top five “health benefits of”-type Google queries of 2016 related to apple cider vinegar, coconut oil, cinnamon, and bone broth. Now we’re cooking with gas.

The final query in that grouping was “health food stores near me,” suggesting that more people are actively seeking out sources for nutrient-dense, minimally-processed foods. Who knows? Maybe a few of them stumbled on Thrive…or PRIMAL KITCHEN™ in the process.

This newfound food research fanaticism may or may not guide people towards a more Primal way of eating. To get a glimpse of the not too distant edible future, I’ve skimmed some of the more notable predictions for 2017 floating around the net. Here’s a small taste:

Plant-based protein will be all the rage.

Apparently 2016 was the International Year of Pulses. Who knew? It certainly did see a return of the legume back to the kitchen table—even among the Primal and paleo circles. Personally, I’ve got no beef with legumes. I’ll throw them in for taste and texture sometimes. That said, I wouldn’t ever depend on them for my protein base. Sure, there’s nutrition there, in some more than others, but let’s be honest, too—the carb count hasn’t changed.

Brace yourself for an onslaught of beans in the coming months, people.

(Good) fats may catch a welcome reprieve.

At last, a prediction to truly get excited about! After a casual 4-plus decades of hating on fat of any kind, the U.S. Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee has grudgingly admitted that certain fatty foods may in fact not be the devil incarnate. Avocado, almonds and salmon all get the thumbs-up from these dietary sticklers, which may herald a new golden age for the fat-starved masses. Grok’s nodding in approval.

But don’t be fooled: most dietary bigwigs are still convinced that fat is the enemy. A skim (pun intended) through the 2015 Dietary Guidelines reveals  an immovability with regard to saturated fats, and I don’t think a year has done much to budge them. Note that we’re still getting the same old recommendations for “fat-free or low-fat dairy, including milk, yogurt, cheese, and/or fortified soy beverages.” Here I was thinking we’d finally hit a home run.

Progress: We’ll take it where we can get it.

Despite the apparent dietary see-sawing, maybe it’s not too much to suggest there’s less disagreement when it comes to what constitutes healthy eating. Those who are willing to do the research agree that low/moderate carbs and high fat are good, as long as it’s healthy fat. The rising stars of 2016 showed that nutrient density is quickly becoming a benchmark for healthy eating, along with the growing notion that maybe eating so much sugar isn’t the best decision ever.

If ancestral logic isn’t getting the credit, it’s perhaps because we remain uncomfortable looking to our uncivilized past for direction. As a tech-savvy consumer society, most people prefer to believe sources for dietary wisdom are situated in cutting edge science rather than innate sense. We’re more inclined to trust “progress” than history.

Still, if popular interests and, brace yourselves, conventional wisdom are indeed inching toward ancestral principles (even as they disown them by name), the overall direction perhaps creates new entry points for more folks to discover a larger picture of health in the Primal Blueprint or paleo models.

And, btw, let’s not overcomplicate things.

All said, it’s refreshing to see an increase in people actually showing some degree of consciousness regarding the ingredients in their food. Yet, it’s also frustrating to discover that most people still believe being healthy is hard. Among the commentary and observations offered with the report is the notion that “to eat healthy, you have to pay a lot of attention.” To me, we walk a fine line with these kinds of statements and may actually deter people from trying to get healthy in the first place.

People think that eating healthy is complicated, that the rules change all the time, and the mainstream media chronically perpetuates this misconception.

That’s the beauty of ancestral logic. The Primal Blueprint diet is, at its core, very simple. Healthy fats, fresh produce, high-quality meats. It’s not rocket science, and that’s why it works. Perhaps 2017 will see a continuing shift towards dietary simplicity. For the sake of public health, I certainly hope so. I’m ready to do my part.

Thanks for stopping by everyone. Is there anything food-related that’s made a big difference to your life in 2016? What are your predictions for popular food trends in 2017?

Happy holidays, and I’ll see you in the new year!

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New Year Intentions

Can I jump into scrooge mode for just a minute and say that I am so ready for this tree to be out of my living room?! Sorry I just had to admit that out loud. I love the coziness of Christmas, but the decorations really make me a little crazy by the end, and I don’t even have that many!

Admittedly January is not one of my favorite months. It’s cold and dark and reallllly long. Sorry, January. This year, however, I am trying my hardest to look at January in a positive light. Let’s swap the negative words for positive ones:

Pure

Refreshing

Minimalist

Crisp

Blank slate

Potential

Time

{Breakfast: Two eggs and whole wheat blueberry muffins}

I was looking for some new year challenges and stumbled upon the “Screw Your Resolutions” challenge put on by the Healthy Habits, Happy Moms ladies. They are doing a free 30 day challenge from January 2-31 with daily prompts for quick home workouts, meal prep ideas, self-love and self-care activities that all focus on YOU in 20 minutes a day. The program’s philosophy of anti-diet, balance, and moderation all align with what I write about here on KERF, so I signed up to participate because it seems like a great way to get inspired by a community of others who are starting the year with similar intentions to me. Healthy Habits, Happy Moms also does a larger program called Balance 365 that is a year-long course to living your best life. If you get your snowball rolling, you can keep going with that! Of course they have moms at heart, but anyone can participate.

{Lunch: sardine salad, garlicky massaged kale, Red, Hot, Blues}

Instead of resolutions, I am setting intentions for the new year. If I were a crafty person I might cut out photos from magazines and make a mood board, but that would feel like a chore to me, so let’s just close our eyes and make a mental mood board. What are your intentions for 2017? How do you want it to feel?

I am still pondering mine for a post to come about my 2017 word of the year!

{Dinner: frittata, roasted potatoes, frozen parmesan peas}

Happy New Year!

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