Wednesday, October 10, 2018

What I’m Loving Lately 125

Hi, guys!

These short weeks always fly by – I can’t believe it’s already Thursday! Tuesday and Wednesday were a complete blur – trying to get ourselves together after a weekend away in Newport and then catching up with a crazy amount of work + a special event at Gillette Stadium on Wednesday. This morning, I’m off to MGH for an Entyvio infusion, which typically takes up a good amount of the day. Tomorrow is a “gym day” with Quinn, which also includes his first solo swim lessons at the Goldfish Swim School. After a summer of him LOVING swimming, it was definitely time for some lessons! All this to say, it’s been a jam-packed week for us so far!

Since it’s Thursday morning, it’s time for this week’s What I’m Loving Lately blog post. I have quite a fun round-up for you guys – I hope you enjoy it!

Signature Fleece Pullover – I wore this fleece pullover ALL weekend in Newport. It’s definitely a new favorite! Mal actually surprised me with it last week – because I hate spending money on myself – but I’m so glad that he did! It’s definitely become a staple piece in my wardrobe!

EverlyWell discount increase – If you’re interested is trying out one of EverlyWell’s tests, they recently offered CNC readers a higher discount at 15% off! If you’re curious about food sensitivity tests, in particular, I reviewed the one from EverlyWell as well as the LEAP protocol – both have their pros and cons.

UA Pindot Open Back – I’m kind of obsessed with this shirt and might just need it in my life for pre- and post- workout! The back is everything! 

We’re Killing Our Kids and Calling It Love – This was really good!

Overnight Resurfacing Peel – I’m LOVVVING this product! I know that I just blogged about it, but it’s so much better than I expected. It kind of has that “rip your face off” feeling, but it the best way possible – like it’s removing all of the dead skin cells and junk on your face. It really does make your skin so soft and GLOW in the morning. I’m in love!

What’s on my Plate? Low FODMAP Dinner Inspo – Lots of tasty dinner ideas in this post!

Atlas Bars – If you follow me on Instagram, you already know my love for Atlas Bars, which is why I’m even more excited to partner with the brand. I met the owner a couple of months ago, and his story is so great. I love Atlas Bars because 1) they’re delicious; 2) GMO free; 3) low in sugar; 4) gluten-free; 5) the perfect post-workout macro-balanced bar; and 6) they’re made locally in Duxbury! Each one has 16-18g of protein and 23-25g of carbs (depending on flavor), which is an awesome combo for refueling! The peanut butter chip is my favorite followed by the vanilla almond. Mal loves the chocolate, so, honestly, whatever flavor you pick, you really can’t go wrong! FYI: You can save 15% with code CNC on atlasbars.com!

Your Dog Is Probably Dumber Than You Think, a New Study Says – We always knew Murphy wasn’t the smartest. Haha!

Haircuts at home – We finally got sick of paying $25 for a so-so kid’s haircut, so we bought a trimmer kit from Target to cut Quinn’s hair at home. It cost less than a single haircut, and Dada’s first try as a barber went really well!

Trader Joe’s Harvest Blend Herbal Tea – I’m loving this tea in the afternoon and before bed. It has so much flavor!!

Fitnessista Fit Guide: Home Workout Warrior – I love this fitness offering from my friend Gina! This 12-week fitness plan for the Home Workout Warrior is a no-frills approach to fitness! You don’t need fancy equipment to get in an amazing workout – and neither does this routine. The plan includes 12 weeks of workouts, a workout calendar, a suggested meal plan, and more!

Califia Farms Toffee Tidings Almondmilk Creamer – This creamer was a total impulse buy at Target, and I’m so glad that I picked it up. It’s absolutely delicious and doesn’t have any crazy ingredients!

Question of the Day

Is this week flying by for you? Yay or nay? 

What seasonal deliciousness (i.e. tea, coffee, creamer) are you loving lately? 

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Shopping For Real Food: 5 Things To Look For

Fresh food is best – we can all agree on that. The ingredient list on an apple says “Contains: apple.” Simple, easy, natural. In fact, no ingredient list is even required. Whole foods should always been the foundation of our diet.

But we also live in a world of convenience, and not everyone has the time or equipment to turn whole ingredients into delicious, on-the-go meals and snacks. Thus, we rely on companies to do some of the heavy lifting for us.

Going to the grocery store and looking for healthy products can be quite the overwhelming experience. Sometimes even the simple ingredients can look foreign and ingredients that might be not-so-simple look natural. My best advice is to read the ingredient list to see if the item you’re drooling on has simple ingredients that you recognize. (Check out my Real Food Series for more info!)

If you do get overwhelmed, though, rest assured that it’s totally fine and healthy to consume products that are not 100% “clean eating” on occasion. That’s part of being a human and enjoying life. I have myself a diet soda from time to time and enjoy Oreos, Starburst, or Cheese-its on occasion. What is most important is to make the everyday staples you rely on for the bulk of your meals and the foundation of your diet as natural as possible.

I’ve put together a list of five food tips that help guide me in my everyday choices:

1. Simple Ingredients

When I’m shopping for anything other than whole foods, I look at the ingredient list first. I need the product to read as a pure, real food. {See my Real Food Series for more in-depth information!} Are the ingredients simple and recognizable? Could I make this at home if I wanted to, even if it would take a long time? If so, I’ll happily let the pros do the cooking/mixing/fermenting/baking for me.

2. Natural (No artificial preservatives, sweeteners, flavors, colors, or GMOs)

I think it’s best to err on the side of caution and stay away from anything made in a laboratory or modified genetically. I also don’t want a product to try and fool me with artificial sweeteners, or to be dyed neon colors (and neither does Mazen!). We like to keep things all-natural; it just tastes better that way! But as I said above, we do eat all of the above from time to time – just not on a daily basis.

3. Mindfully Sweet

Great food choices don’t have be completely sugar-free. When I shop, I want to see that the sugar content in a product is mindful and reasonable. I actually prefer my foods, like yogurt or teas, not very sweet. I like the food’s flavors do all the talking, which gives me the option to add some naturally sweet fruit or crunchy granola on top if I want. Plus if you’re buying plain foods like milk or yogurt, you can make both sweet and savory dishes with them, so you stretch your purchase further than if you buy pre-packaged, flavored yogurts, for example.

4. Higher In Protein and Fat

Protein and fat are important for satiety, so foods that have more than – say 1 gram – on the nutrition facts are going to be more filling than carbohydrate-heavy foods. After looking at the ingredient list, I’ll skim the protein and fat to see how the nutrition breaks down. For example, whole grain crackers verses white flour or chips made from peas or lentils instead of air.

5. Transparent, Sustainable, and Delicious

I believe we vote with our dollars, so I choose to support companies that are doing things the right way, which to me means creating reasonably-priced products that taste great, and doing so in an honest way. You don’t always know what you’re getting, but the more familiar with are with brands (like through blog post collaborations!) the more we can make good choices.

I also appreciate brands that source from farms that raise their animals humanely. While not every brand I buy is 100% local/humane, whenever I’m faced with a choice, I try to choose the one that is, even if it’s more expensive. I respect brands that embrace sustainability. A good example is store-brand tuna fish verses a brand like Wild Planet. Sometimes I buy store-brand by default depending on what’s available, but if I have a choice in the purchase, I’ll reach for the sustainable choice.

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