How to fill your plate [food pics inside!]

Tonight I'm teaching you HOW to build your plate. Get ready, it's going to be life changing. 

In case you missed it, over the next few weeks I'm going to be sharing some of my core healthy living principles with you. These are the recommendations that I start on with ALL of my one-on-one coaching clients, so you can think of these next few weekly emails like you are starting your own coaching program with me! Cool!

Wherever you are at, these suggestions will be relevant, and if you've heard them before, that's okay! Likely you need the reminder - I know I always do!

Coaching tip #1: Start your day with a GIANT glass of water

Coaching tip #2: Fill HALF your plate with veggies.

Yup. HALF. 

If that sounds scary, no worries, I'm going to give you some ideas and easy recipes below.

If you are like "Oh, Emily, I already DO that! I guess I can skip the rest of this email." Nope. I got an extra challenge for you. Keep reading...

I grew up with healthy, home-cooked food, but usually the focus of each meal was a protein and a carb (think meat and potatoes, fish and rice, etc). We definitely had veggies, but not the extent that I eat (and recommend that you eat!) for optimal energy, focus and health!

Here's the basic formula I use in building any meal NOW and it's how I teach my coaching clients to re-think their plates.

 Step 1: Fill HALF of your plate with veggies.

You guys - this is NOT HARD. There are SO many incredible, delicious vegetables out there. If you a) think you don't like vegetables or b) are bored with your current options, TRY something new!

Yes you've got lettuces, kale, spinach, arugula, collard greens, broccoli, asparagus, Brussels sprouts, but also carrots, cucumbers, tomatoes, radishes, cauliflower, eggplant, onions and mushrooms, not to mention squash, pumpkin, beets, turnips, parsnips... the list goes on and on. 

For my more "advanced" friends: focus on GREEN veggies. They pack the most bang for your nutritional buck!

Now you can totally get fancy with your veggies, which I do on occasion, but most of the time I keep things simple. 

  • Eat your veggies raw. Try shredding or dicing them for different textures!
  • Roast em! This is my favorite way to eat any vegetable. Roasting brings out the natural sweetness and flavors. Do it: Roasting Veggies 101
  • Steam em! Steaming is probably the quickest option, and ideal for super fresh seasonal produce. Do it: How to Steam Vegetables 

Step 2: Add a high quality protein to 1/4 of your plate.

Protein is important because it helps us build muscles and stay FULL! 

Here are just a few protein options: poultry (chicken, turkey, etc), beef, pork, lamb, fish, seafood (crab, lobster, mussels, oysters, squid, etc), eggs, soy (tofu and tempeh) and lentils. Beans are also a protein source, but they actually count more as a carbohydrate... which leads us to the next step in our plate equation.

Step 3: The last 1/4 of your plate is for carbohydrates!

Carbohydrates are not all bad! This is probably the second biggest myth I bust for my new nutrition coaching clients (biggest myth is in Step 4 below). Carbohydrates are actually an essential macronutrient and one that our body readily converts to energy. They get a bad rep because if you eat too many carbohydrates, and you don't burn em off, your body has excess energy which it {oh so nicely} stores for later as fat. 

Without getting too specific (this does vary person to person), I recommend including a moderate amount of naturally occurring carbohydrates in your diet (hence the 1/4 of your plate).

Here are some of my favorites: sweet potatoes and regular potatoes, corn, beans, peas, all grains (quinoa, rice, brown rice, wild rice, millet, oats, etc etc), whole grain or (preferably) gluten free breads and pastas.

Step 4: Top it off with healthy fats!

"But Emily, won't fat make me fat?" No. No. NO! 

Your brain NEEDS fat to function. Your cells (especially your hair, skin and nails) LOVE healthy fats. 

Now, I'm not talking about the oil on fast food french fries fat. I'm talking fats that are naturally found in nature and that are minimally processed. 

My favorite fats: Avocado, coconut products (oil, butter, milk, flaked coconut), olive oil and olives, nuts and seeds, nut butters, hard cheese (if you handle dairy okay!), eggs (yes! eat the yolk!), fatty fish and fats on quality meats. 

Fats are higher in calories, so think of these like a dressing or condiment - a little goes a long way. 

Alright, so you have my basic "healthy plate" formula. Let me give you some ideas of what that actually looks like:

Plate 1: Romaine lettuce, peas, avocado, sauerkraut + garlic shrimp
Plate 2: Eggs, roasted sweet potato, steamed kale + beet kraut

Plate 3: Sautéed greens + mushrooms, roasted squash, avocado + chicken sausage

See how each of these plates contains all the elements above? And these are just three ideas! [Need more inspiration? Head over to Instagram]

Here's your homework assignment for this week: see if you can make ONE meal of the day match this formula. Extra bonus points if you take a photo and send it to me OR post to social media. Make sure to tag me @EmilyNachazel so I can see your beautiful plates! 

Bon apetite!

Are you missing this in your morning?

Over the next few weeks I'm going to be sharing some of my core healthy living principles with you. These are the recommendations that I start on with ALL of my one-on-one coaching clients, so you can think of these next few weekly Monday blog posts like you are starting your own coaching program with me! Cool!

Wherever you are at, these suggestions will be relevant, and if you've heard them before, that's okay! Likely you need the reminder - I know I always do!

Coaching tip #1: Start your day with a GIANT glass of water.

Every morning before I get out of bed, I drink a BIG ol' glass of water. It get things moving digestion wise and immediately energizes me. 

Staying hydrated is essential for every part of your body to function optimally. On the flip side, de-hydration is the cause of so many issues: constipation, sluggish metabolism, low energy, headaches, dry skin, irritability, sugar cravings, trouble sleeping, muscle cramps and fatigue... the list goes on. 

If I could teach everyone in the world just ONE thing to improve their health it would be to DRINK MORE WATER!  

Yup, it's that important. AND the best part is that it's so SIMPLE. 

I can hear many of you already "But Emily, I just don't love water. Is it okay if I drink tea instead?"

Well yes, and no. Beverages like tea, coconut water and kombucha are great, but most of what you drink should be straight up H20.

Water doesn't have to be plain or boring! Lately I've been loving lemon slices (or a few drops of doTERRA lemon essential oil) in my water. Adding fruit or fresh herbs is a great way to make your water more tasty and exciting. 

So here's your homework assignment for this week: start your day with a BIG glass of water (I use these mason jars). Drink your water before your coffee or matcha or tea. Just DO IT!! And then let me know how you feel. My clients see a HUGE shift in energy, mood + cravings almost immediately from making this one simple change. 

Do you drink water in the morning? How do you notice it effects your energy, mood, or cravings? Let me know in the comments below!

Tips for Living Dairy Free

Do you love dairy but it doesn’t love you back?

Yeah, me too. Today, the Physicians’ Committee for Responsible Medicine acknowledges that 75 percent of adults lose the ability to digest lactose after they’re weaned as babies. This means that three quarters of the population are lactose intolerant (the new term for those who retain the enzyme to digest lactose are called “lactase persistent”)

Think you may benefit from ditching dairy? Head on over to the Class Pass blog for the low down on WHY you may feel better without milk and cheese (and butter!) and HOW you can go about making this switch without going crazy :)

Sticking to Your Resolutions

You may have forgotten that just over a month ago you made some big plans to do things differently this year. You said you'll go to the gym more, eat less junk, or maybe try to find that special someone. And what happened? Life probably got in the way of accomplishing those New Year's resolutions and you're back to your old habits.

Today I'm sharing 3 easy tips for creating resolutions that actually stick (it's not too late!) over at The ANY Magazine, an online publication launched in 2015 by Alder New York to share a unique perspective on living your best life. I love The ANY Magazine because it is all about helping you find that 80/20 balance between what you know you should do (go to the gym, drink green smoothies) and what you WANT to do (stay out late, have that second glass of champagne).

Head on over here to read the full article (and check out this awesome resource!): Sticking to Your Resolutions.

What I Ate Wednesday 1/13/16

In an effort to show you all more of what I eat as a primarily plant-based, active adult, I'm starting a new series here on the blog - "What I Ate Wednesday."  Each Wednesday I'll snap a picture of everything I eat and post the pictures plus descriptions here on the blog.  I'll share helpful information on what I'm eating and why.

PLEASE, please, please do not think that your food choices should directly mirror mine - we are all different and what works for my body may not work for your body, and vice versa.  I'm still figuring out what works best for me and guess what?  It's changing all the time.  I'm simply sharing my choices with the hopes to give you more ideas when it comes to plant based foods and meals. Want some help in finding what works best for your body? Schedule a complementary strategy session with me!

Here's what I ate this Wednesday:

Upon waking: Water + lemon, then an almond milk latte Quick tip: squeeze some lemons at the beginning of the week so you have juice ready to go in the AM. Lemon water is naturally detoxifying and a great way to jumpstart your system first thing in the morning. 

Breakfast: a few assorted Ginny bakes cookies + cinnamon almond butter (homemade!) + banana. Quick tip (okay maybe not so quick tip, but important!): Truthfully, most of what I eat is super healthy: veggies, greens, lean protein, good fats. But I also have days when I'm busy or stressed or just don't feel like eating kale, and it's okay. On those days (like today) I aim for two things: 1) Choose the best of what's around >>> I make sure   whatever I reach for is the BEST option I have access to (real food based, wholesome sweeteners, organic), because I know that eating crap makes me feel like crap, and ain't nobody got time for that! 2) I ENJOY with no guilt >>> this is SO key. If you are going to indulge, let yourself INDULGE. Taste it, chew it, use all your senses to truly enjoy the treat. 

Lunch: BIG bowl of lentil Dahl from Jivamuhkti cafe + iced chai tea with almond milk

Afternoon pick me up: green juice - green apple, celery, cucumber, kale {I blame the morning cookies for my afternoon green juice craving ;) }

Dinner: arugula, a whole lot of avocado, roasted butternut squash, soft boiled egg, gomasio sprinkle + sauerkraut. YUM! Quick tip: Make sure to eat good FATs with your greens - this helps your body properly absorb all the wonderful nutrients in those veggies!


And there you have it - another day in my food life!  Questions on anything I've noted above?  ASK ME - I love to hear your thoughts and questions in the comments below. Ready to dive deeper and explore making changes in your own diet for endless energy and amazing digestion, this yearSchedule a complementary strategy session with me!

PS. Thanks to ginnybakes for sending me some of their products to sample and share! I'll be posting a full review here on the blog once I've made my way through all the treats.