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Month: January 2017

Cleanse Update And My Favourite Meatless Dinner

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After seven days of drinking delicious green juices for the beginning stages of my cleanse, I started getting night sweats. Like crazy sweat-through-your-clothes night sweats. Part of me thought, “There is no way this can be normal,” but the other part of me wanted to believe that it was just a reaction to my body cleansing. I had decided to embark on this cleansing period after having pre-cancer removed from my colon last August. (You can read more on that here.) I knew I needed time to mentally and physically prep for it, so I decided January 2017 would be the start of my three-month journey of twenty-one days of juicing and two months of high-nutritient food that didn’t contain grains, dairy, alcohol, or sugar. I would be doing this to cleanse my colon, liver, and gall bladder. I know—sounds awesome, right?

 

On day seven of the cleanse—after beating the headaches and having gotten over the fact that wine would not be happening for a while—I was super disappointed to learn that I needed to take a step back from my cleansing. The amazing ladies at the Habit Project had been wonderful at making me the most delicious juices to help me stay focused and get what my body needed, but I’d also enlisted the help of Jackie from Food Works. As I’ve said in previous blog posts, having someone lead you through the cleanse is so very important! During the cleansing period, Jackie does a weekly call to check in, go over what’s happening with your body, work through emotional and physical changes, and teach you amazing recipes to get what your body needs. On my first check-in call, I mentioned the night sweats, and she immediately dug into this.

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You may not know this, but winter months are not the ideal time to cleanse the body, especially for someone with an autoimmune disorder. (I have hypothyroid.) During this time of the year, the body needs to be warmed with foods like root vegetables, starches, and soups to keep it operating well in the cooler temperatures. It turns out that a lack of such things can cause some pretty crazy effects in people with autoimmune disorders, including hormone imbalances, night sweats, racing heart, insomnia, and more. I definitely experienced all of the above! I felt like I was going into pre-menopause ! It was bananas!

I started backing off from the juicing slowly while adding soups and more raw foods and introducing nuts again. We decided to postpone the cleanse until the spring when the body is naturally ready to cleanse, craves more fresh veggies/fruits, and doesn’t have to work so hard to stay warm. After a few days off from the cleanse, I started a twenty-one-day food cleanse, which just realigns the body and helps with kicking some cravings the body is holding onto. It’s also a great way to prep the body for an intense cleanse like the one I’d been getting ready to embark on. I wanted to share this with you because of the importance of having someone like Jackie in your life when you decide to make a huge health shift. Had I not been walking through this with someone who is highly trained, I most likely would have brushed off my symptoms and really hurt my body.

Can you cleanse at all this time of year?

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Yes, most definitely! The three-day cleanse the Habit Project offers is the perfect way to reset the body and kick some cravings you are struggling with. It’s very gentle on the body and is also a great way to start off something like Joy McCarthy’s thirty-day food detox. This type of cleanse causes very little stress on our digestive systems and is the perfect way to introduce the body to cleansing, get a little reset, or prep for that more intense, deeper cleanse.

Although it was super frustrating to have to stop and put off restarting this cleanse (especially because I’d been bitter about even doing it in the first place), I know it was the best decision. Plus, it gives you my readers more time to think about joining me on the cleansing journey in April! 😉

Over the next eighteen days of the final period of my cleanse, you will be seeing lots of recipes that I’m using for every meal of the day. So stay tuned and follow along!

Here is one of my current favorites, which I actually posted about a few years ago—a lentil loaf that my friend Tasha came up with. It’s the perfect meat replacement, it works as a wonderful main course to serve with French fries, and it makes an awesome meatless meatball for any spaghetti dish.

 

Enjoy~~*

Lentil Loaf

Rachel

ingredients:

I purchase all my fresh and organic ingredients from Natures Fare Market.

  • 1 cup uncooked green lentils
  • 1 cup finely chopped almonds or walnuts (I used almonds)
  • 3TB ground flax soaked in 1/2 cup water for at least 10 min
  • 3 garlic cloves finely minced (or 3 tsp garlic powder in a pinch)
  • 1 cup each finely diced onion and celery
  • 1 cup grated carrot
  • 1/2 cup grated apple (no need to peel it first. May also use 1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce in a pinch)
  • 1/2 cup quick oats
  • 3/4 cup almond flour, also known as almond meal
  • 2 tsp fresh thyme (or 1tsp dried thyme in a pinch)
  • 1.5 tsp herbamare (or salt and pepper to your liking)

Tomato Glaze:

  • heaping 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1TB maple syrup
  • 2TB coconut sugar ( I used date sugar as a replacement to fit with my cleanse)
  • 2TB balsamic vinegar (choose a good quality one, it’s worth it!)

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  • Directions:

    Cook the lentils in about 3 cups of water. Bring to a boil first, then set to simmer for about 30 more minutes. The point here is to overcook them so they are a bit sticky and mushy. That may mean adding a bit more water if it seems like they are running out of water. Stir every 5-10 min or so. Once you think they’re cooked and mushy enough, mash them even more with a potato masher. They won’t look pretty right now, but this step is worth it in the end.

    Leave the lentils alone for now and sauté the onion, celery, garlic in a bit of coconut oil. (or your oil or choice) Cook until just a little bit soft, 5-10 min.

    Mix all the ingredients now in a big bowl and mix well. At this point you can taste it and see if you’d like to add more salt, pepper, thyme etc.

    Pour mixture into a loaf pan lined with parchment paper and press down firmly

    Mix all the ingredients of the glaze in a bowl and brush over the top of the loaf covering it completely.

    Bake for 350 degrees for 40 min.

Enjoy with a side of yams and salad~~*

Young Denham

Aritzia

A lot has changed since I turned 30, and my closet is no exception. Now 1/4 the size it used to be back in my distant 20’s, I feel as though I’ve never been happier with my selection of pieces to choose from. Fashion and how I view it has totally changed in the past few years, and my appreciation for the hard work, quality, detail and story behind clothing brands matter more to me than ever before. I’ve shifted my focus from quantity (how many pieces can I purchased with $X amount of money) to quality of product. Do these clothes cost more? Absolutely. The amount I spend per item has increased, but so has the time and effort that goes into really choosing pieces I love and will use for long periods of time, and through multiple seasons. Saving up and spending more for items that end up becoming staple pieces in my wardrobe seems to be working well for me. Someone recently commented on my Poppy Barley boots saying that they were “lovely, but far too pricey.” At one point (in my early 20’s) I would have totally agreed with this person, until one day I used some of my hard earned cash to invest in my first pair of good quality leather boots while working for Kenneth Cole’s sales and marketing team in Seattle. For over a decade those boots carried me through season after season and I actually just re-sold them at a shop my closet event! Spread that $350 over 10 years and you have spent $35 dollars a year for the most amazing boots. How many times have those cheap boots you paid $50-$100 for lasted you one season? The math is painful, I know.

img_2674-2I absolutely LOVE my Poppy Barley boots and the integrity that comes with their hand crafted designs. I also happened to love the ladies behind the name. Nothing is more inspiring to me then seeing fellow female entrepreneurs take chances and strive to make their mark in the fashion world. Which is exactly what my beautiful friends Alana & Nicole are doing with Young Denham. Alana has been one of my best friends since moving to Canada and I’ve always been inspired by her creative style and love for fashion. She’s always looking for a new and creative way to work with pieces of clothing that most would be donating away. Along with my amazing artist friend Nicole Young, they came up with the idea to have Alana search for thrift’d denim jackets and have Nicole paint beautiful pieces of art on them. I’ve always been a fan of Nicole’s art, so when they sent me some photos of their up-cycle idea I knew this was something that needed to become a staple in my closet. This beautiful jacket has become my go to for so many outfits! It’s the perfect piece to pair with a little black dress, the everyday pant, and it adds an edge to my gym look. I have literally been chased down a street in Vancouver by a girl wanting to know where I got my jacket from. The combination of the retro Levi’s look and Nicole’s amazing artistic ability creates the perfect one of a kind jacket! I’m in love!

 

Check out Young Denham on Instagram

 

Photography: Rhys Albrecht

Jacket: Young Denham

Boots: Poppy Barley

Bag: Thrive Lifestyle

Pants: Thrive Lifestyle 

Dress: Aritzia

 

facetune-3 denim jacket Denham Jacket young denham denim jacket little black dress

Hello 2017…Hello Cleansing!

 

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I’m not big on New Year’s resolutions, but I am a believer in goal setting and really documenting personal change throughout the year. This year I decided to really focus on my health and just getting some things into alignment after having had some pre-cancer polyps removed from my colon last August. (Read more about that here.)

I decided that the beginning of the year was the perfect time to embark on a pretty extensive cleanse since my clients, friends and husband would also be trying to clean up their diets, significantly lowering the pressure to meet up for drinks or dinners out. Plus, I love the idea of a new year and a clean slate. I love knowing that I have the ability to really make 2017 a huge year of growth for me, no matter what crosses my path. So as of today I’m three days into a three-month cleanse I will be undertaking to really try to reset my body and clear out anything that may be hanging around in my colon or deeper tissues. I want you to know, though, that I’m going into this cleanse with the soft approach. I have a plan for how I want to do things, but if something needs to be added or taken away while I’m on this journey, I do want to be flexible.

I’m not really a fan of cleansing or detoxing due to the limitations it puts on my diet and social life and the headaches that come from my not drinking coffee:( But I really felt this was the best decision for my body and wanted to follow through with this process. I most definitely am already experiencing headaches, and I wish I could eat my food instead of drinking it. Plus, I miss wine! But I’ve had amazing support from my husband (who is also cleansing with me) and the ladies at The Habitat Project , who have been blending up delicious juices for me, assisting with my meal planning, and offering tons of knowledge as I toss questions their way.

I want to share this process, including my ups and downs, to possibly encourage someone who might be on the fence about taking on something like a cleanse. If something doesn’t feel right in your body, give yourself the time and space to research the best options for you. If it turns out that a cleanse might be the solution, I want you to know that you can do this! I will be sharing my week by week schedule once I get the final details of everything nailed down this weekend.

Also…

During this process, I will be sharing recipes, workouts, and photos of my progress. Please feel free to leave comments and e-mail questions and to share your journey as well.

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This delicious soup is currently our nighttime go-to with pure coconut bread.

All my ingredients are organic and purchased at Natures Fare Market.

Enjoy~~*

  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 cup diced carrots
  • 4 cups chopped cabbage
  • 2 cups of yams
  • 1 cup celery, diced
  • 2 whole bell peppers
  • 1 can (28 oz ) low sodium diced tomatoes
  • 6 cups low sodium vegetable broth
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 fresh bay leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon each thyme & basil
  • pink sea salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 cups broccoli florets
  • In a large pot cook onions and garlic over medium heat until slightly sorted .
  • Add celery,yams,carrots, and cabbage and cook until slightly soft.
  • Add all additional ingredients and allow to simmer 5-10 minutes or on a lower heat for 1 hour ( I feel this really increases the yummy flavours.)