Recipe: Fruit & Nut Tart

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In honor of National Pecan Month, we were invited to share our fruit and nut tart recipe with the fine people of Columbus, thanks to WBNS 10TV. This beauty is easy to make and fun to decorate. Made from fruit and nuts, it’s raw, vegan, gluten-free, and dairy-free. Did we mention delicious? Because it’s definitely that too!

Ingredients

Crust

1 cup chopped nut blend (we used 1/2 cup walnuts and 1/2 cup pecans)
1 cup chopped dates
1 cup flaked or shredded coconut
1 tbsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of nutmeg, optional

Toppings

1-2 mashed bananas
Blueberries, strawberries, and kiwis to decorate (about 1 cup of each)

Instructions

Soak dates in warm water for about 10 minutes to soften them. Chop nuts with a knife or use a food processor. Drain dates and mix with nut blend, coconut, cinnamon, and vanilla extract in a bowl. Once well mixed, roll into balls and press into pie plate. Mash bananas and add a layer or ‘frosting’ to the crust. Top with berries and kiwi or your desired fruits. For extra pizazz, drizzle honey or melted chocolate over the tart.

10TV Recipe: Cocoa-Maca Energy Balls

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If you watched last month’s segment on 10TV, you learned about the factors which can make us feel FAT & TIRED as well as the top 10 foods for increasing our natural energy levels. One of the ideas featured was our Cocoa-Maca Energy Balls; it’s a great pick-me-up for the 3pm slump and a delicious, chocolate-y treat.

Prep time: 5-10 minutes
Servings: 24 energy balls

Ingredients

1 cup coconut oil, melted
2.5 cups shredded coconut
1 cup cacao powder (or cocoa powder)
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp cayenne powder
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp maca powder

Instructions

Put shredded coconut, cacao powder, cinnamon and cayenne in medium bowl. Mix melted coconut oil, maple syrup, and vanilla extract and pour over dry ingredients. Combine well and put in freezer for about 15 minutes. Remove mixture and shape into balls; recipe makes 24. Store in fridge for up to a week or in freezer for up to 3 months.

 

Emotional Ice Cream

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It starts at a young age with associations we can’t remember making. But by this point in our short lives, we have engineered quite a few if-then connections.

If I throw my food on the floor, then mommy will be upset.

If I behave while at preschool today, the teacher will give me a sticker.

Perhaps there was a time where you fell, scraped your knee and began to cry because of the pain and shock. Maybe an adult offered you a lollipop to help cheer you up. Bam! Neural pathway made: “okay, so when I feel hurt, eating sweets is an acceptable solution”

Fast-forward decades years later and it’s still going on. A difficult conversation with your boss or spouse become an excuse, albeit mostly unconscious, to indulge in some ice cream. A night out drinking with friends is a ‘reward’ for a hellish, stressful week. And it’s OKAY to treat ourselves, but there’s a distinct mindlessness involved in emotional eating. Very few people think to themselves, “boy do these feelings hurt, perhaps I’ll eat enough chocolate chip cookies to squash them down.” And yet that unconscious belief can be at play, creating patterns that are deeply ingrained.

What to do?

The first step is awareness.

Perhaps the next time you find yourself reaching in the freezer for ice cream, ask yourself why you think you’re doing it. Perhaps you’ll reflect upon your day and remember that your boss assigned a short deadline for your next project, you’re completely overwhelmed by responsibilities, or that your mother-in-law criticized your parenting. Ice cream can seem like a balm for these ‘ouch’ moments, but there is more shame than comfort at the bottom of a pint of rocky road. Even if you find the answer to your question, you may not be able to change the behavior just yet. That’s okay. It’s something we can work on together; schedule your complimentary 20-minutes Discovery Call to get started.

The 7-day Breakfast Experiment

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At the Body Mindfulness presentation we gave at VegFest this past weekend, we spoke about how to bring awareness to both our lifestyle choices and to our plates. By listening to the messages the body is sending us, we can identify issues (and solutions!) related to digestive, blood sugar, and stress woes. Are you answering the calls your body makes?

Because what we eat first thing in the morning can impact our energy levels, sugar cravings, digestion, and more, we suggest you try a fun Breakfast Experiment. Consider keeping record in a notepad, calendar, or on your computer. This exercise is a powerful tool to bring awareness to your eating patterns. Here’s an example:

Day 1: scrambled eggs
Day 2: fruit smoothie
Day 3: oatmeal
Day 4: boxed breakfast cereal
Day 5: coffee and bagel
Day 6: whole wheat pancakes
Day 7: avocado toast (toast with mashed avocado on top)

Feel free to change this experiment to fit your diet with vegan, gluten-free, or other appropriate options. If you’re diabetic or worried about becoming so, consider checking your blood sugar after each of these meals and noticing any differences in daily measurement.

On each day, you’ll want to record the food you ate, how you felt (physically or emotionally, i.e. “felt energized!” or “started getting heartburn”) a few minutes after eating and then again 2-3 hours later (i.e. “had tons of energy and was productive but then dropped, craving coffee” or “felt really full, almost forgot to eat lunch!”)

Your job, as a breakfast experiment scientist, is not to negatively judge yourself or your food choices. Objectively recording the information can assist you in making connections between what you’ve eaten and how you feel – both physically and emotionally.

This exercise may reveal digestive upset or an intolerance to certain foods. A food sensitivity or allergy may impact your level of inflammation and symptoms. Contact your integrative nutritionist to discuss what you discover and to get the support you need to experience a higher level of vitality and wellness!

10 Reasons to Fall in Love – Vienna, Austria

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When you think of Vienna it is hard to not think of vibrant culture. The city has a rich history and this can be seen from the architecture to the food and music. So when work ‘obliges’ one to travel to Austria, it’s time to lift the jaw back from the floor, grab a passport, clear space in the phone’s camera memory, and DO IT. Even for a short visit, we found a great many reasons not to get back on the return flight, but we’ll start with 10.

  1. History & Architecture. Relatively speaking, the U.S. is a young, adolescent country. We’re energetic and think we have all the answers, but it’s a good idea to sit with an older country and gain some wisdom, particularly over some coffee and their specialty chocolate cake. If you aren’t able to do your homework beforehand, find a quality tour guide to learn about the history of the city, politics, key figures, and architecture. For example, you’ll learn the crypts contain burial remains of members of the Hapsburg family, including Emperor of Austria Franz Joseph. Also, a popular tourist attraction, the Hofburg Imperial Palace, was residence of kings and emperors of the Holy Roman Empire from as early as the 1400s.
  2. Culture. Vienna has been a major city throughout the ages and has attracted great thinkers, musicians and artists such as Sigmund Freud, Mozart, and Gustav Klimt. There are a great many museums, parks, and a famous Opera. 20160901_092959-obw
  3. Education here is very affordable, compared with the US and Canada; it is about 400 Euros or about $450 US dollars per semester. Yes, we cried a bit there too.
  4. Green-space. Taking time to visit a nearby park or explore the gardens of nearby Schönbrunn Palace is a wonderful way to recharge during lunch or after work.  20160830_092217-obw
  5. Safety. With a population of almost 2 million people and a low crime rate, Vienna is one of the safest major cities. A choice on whether to get on the COTA bus or grab a subway in Vienna and we’d choose the subway any day. The public transportation system covers the city and is very inexpensive.
  6. It’s clean! No bits of gum wrappers or cigarette butts on the sidewalk or street. Even the drinking water is fresh from the Austrian alps so ordering tap at a restaurant saves money and is high quality. This is of particular cause of jealousy right now as Columbus’ has tested positive for carcinogenic chromium-6.
  7. Think we forgot to talk about the food? Heck no, it’s delicious! Whether you want to try Wiener sausage, Sacher Torte (their signature chocolate cake) or any number of cuisines, they have it all. They are also surprisingly much better about being vegan and vegetarian-friendly with quite a few healthy restaurants.
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    Fancy fare in Vienna

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    A casual breakfast

  8. Physical activity is highly encouraged – with separate lanes for pedestrians, bicyclists, and then the road for cars. Looking around, excluding tourists, most people are of a normal weight.  Another noticeable aspect of their activity, they are relaxedly walking and often enjoying conversation with friends, with or without an ice cream in hand (and they don’t have Fitbits on either). This still bewilders, but hours of being outdoors and people-watching yielded NOT ONE person race-walking through the city or staring down at his or her phone while rapidly typing. Perhaps they hold the secret to the elusive idea of work-life balance.
  9. Beverages. For enophiles, visit the wine capital of Vienna. Cider is quite good but the beer is best left to Germany to brew. If you visit during the Christmas festivals, have some Glühwein (mixture of hot wine and spices). For non-alcoholic beverages, coffee – in all of its forms – is something for which Austria is famous. Though we usually abstain in America, it was game-on for a week. Coffee with milk, chocolate, ice cream and/or whipped cream? Yes, yes to it all.
  10. Which reminds us – spend a block of time in a coffeehouse. People used to come to coffeehouses to stay warm, relax and leisurely read the daily newspaper, and to share ideas. One has a sense of history and peace and is expected to not treat the space as a pseudo-workstation by whipping out the laptop or phone. Expect that having a coffee with others may last 2-3 hours, with a waitress checking in rather infrequently.  It’s an experience; enjoy it.

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Other notes:

If you don’t speak German, no worries. In major European cities, such as Vienna, everyone seems to be at least bi-lingual. If you do speak German, taking an afternoon to explore and talk to locals will challenge your brain and put a bounce in your step.

Enjoy food, comfort, and beauty in this calm city.

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CorePower Yoga: 3 Class Review

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These days it seems you can throw a stone and hit a yoga teacher or studio; so how does CorePower Yoga stand out?

We posed this question to Elizabeth, studio manager of the Easton Gateway location, and here’s what she shared:”CorePower Yoga is an intense physical workout rooted in the mindfulness of yoga. One other thing that sets us apart is our offering of Yoga Sculpt which combines yoga with weight exercises and cardio. It allows students to get more than just yoga at our studio.” This is definitely true, as you’ll see below.

We’ve checked out a variety of classes at each location. Let’s jump in to the reviews!

 

Day 1: C2 – CorePower Yoga 2– Easton location; Teacher: Meghan

First of all, this class is for the advanced beginner; C1 is for those starting out. It will amp up the balancing and strength postures in a heated room. Sweat is guaranteed, not optional – just think of it as great detoxification :).

Challenging balancing postures are a favorite – tree, warrior 3, dancer- but hold them for awhile and the ‘balance’ between thinking this is fun, play-stuff and ‘oh wow this is tough’ shifts to the latter. Luckily, Meghan is a great teacher – she reminds you to connect to your breath and is ready to adjust your posture so you get the most out of your workout.

Coming in after a morning of medical research, this class provided a beautiful alchemy of stress into sweat and strength. Ending in savasana (final resting pose) and getting a mini-shoulder and head massage from the teacher was a nice bonus. Overall it is a treat for your muscles and your mind.

Word to the wise: bring a towel or your yoga mat may turn into a Slip n Slide®

 

Day 2: Yoga Sculpt – Easton location; Teacher: Joshua

Described on the website as:

“When muscle meets yoga, Sculpt is born. Boost metabolism and build lean muscle mass as you move to upbeat tracks. You’ll combine free weights with CorePower Yoga 2 (C2) sequencing and cardio to intensify each pose while mixing in strength-training moves like squats, lunges and bicep curls. It is recommended that you take at least one CorePower level 1 or 2 (C1 or C2) class before a Yoga Sculpt class.”

Do not focus on the word ‘yoga’ in the description – it makes the class seem deceptively simple. Rest assured, it is not. It’s kind of like a lick a dog might give a bone before crushing his jaws around it.

But we mean this in a good way…

This class will kick your a$$. Over and over. When focusing on your intention, the word ‘survival’ may come to mind.

Even if you’re not trying to show off and opt for the 5lb weights, you may find yourself putting them down while some of the class veterans power through.

As a teacher, Joshua is firm but supportive. He briefly shared his weight loss journey during the introductory part of class and regularly reminded us, through the sweat drops in our eyes and muscle fatigue, “you want this more than I do.” And that we did – a more toned and lean body is something you have to WANT, and from there flows action. You’ll still likely find yourself both admiring him and wanting to remove his larynx to prevent further instruction.

Warrior 2 is not that difficult, but try stretching out those arms in either direction with an extra 10 lbs. Pff. Yeah, then try diamond push-ups. In sweet agony you will find yourself in the final pose, delirious with the joy of having completed the class or perhaps of still being among the living. If there were such a term as ‘beneficial torture’,  you may find it the next day when you can’t fit your massive biceps into your dress shirt or blouse. Don’t thank us. Thank Joshua.

This was indeed unlike any other yoga class we’ve been to before. Bravo, CorePower Yoga. Bravo.

 

Day 3: Hot Power Fusion – Short North location; Teacher: Colleen

We’ve found that a key part of showing up for classes is only looking at the time of the class, NOT the description. It’s too easy to wake up and think “I don’t have it in me for a super-tough workout today.” Why not allow yourself to be surprised? That’s the approach we took this morning; no preconceived notions of how easy or hard this would be.

Since we arrived literally 3 minutes before the doors were locked, upon entering, we declared feeling victorious just by completing the challenge of getting to the class, regardless of how it might go.

Colleen is a friendly teacher who will also remind you that we’re still holding a certain challenging yoga position for 3 more counts. Ah yes, and to continue breathing. The various poses help open shoulders and hips as well as strengthen a flexible spine.

Overall, we loved the intense power yoga combined with breath work and meditation. Upon stepping out of the studio, we felt stronger, more balanced and flexible.

Final verdict: we love it and look forward to more of these experiences and results in the future!

Additional information
Each location has a spa-like feel in the showers and changing rooms with various toiletries provided. Lockers are free to use (ask for a lock, if desired). The retail space has clothing and yoga accessories and the lobby area has towels and water (for a nominal fee) in case you forget to bring your own. It’s clean, bright, and inviting. AND….

Great news! Every new member gets a free week at CorePower Yoga (you’re not obligated to a membership but you’ll probably want one!) so call or schedule at the Easton Gateway or Short North location and let us know what you think.

Sugar Detox Challenge Star: Bobbie

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This past Sugar Detox Challenge was a huge success! Over 78% of participants experienced a weight loss of 5-10% (average pounds lost in 25 days: 8). The feedback included everything from improved skin texture and tone, less stomachaches, less tinnitus, better digestion, conquered out-of-control cravings, and inches lost!

We would like highlight the journey of Sugar Star, Bobbie:

Bobbie started out early in the journey and realized she was getting over 160 grams of added sugar per day! Within the first week of the challenge, she got down to than less than 5g of added sugar.

During the past 24 days, she has lost 11lbs – which wasn’t even her primary goal!

In terms of body composition, she lost a total of 7 inches from chest, waist, hips, and thighs! As she reports: “My size 8 pants used to be tight; now I can get into size 6, they are a bit snug but fine”

In her words:

“This is the easiest ‘diet’ I’ve ever been on! Instead of calorie-counting and deprivation, I’m just getting rid of sugar and it’s working!

I feel better and good about myself. I find that my depression has lifted and I’m getting off the couch more – I feel more energized and my to-do list actually gets done!

I thought that $149 was a lot of money but it’s less than I spend on sugar! The ice cream I was eating was costing me between $6-8.50 per day so I’ve actually saved money, now and for the future!

I consider myself pretty knowledgeable about health but I still experienced ‘aha’ moments; also speaking with an actual person, who is caring and helpful, is a wonderful way to check-in and keep myself accountable.

I’ve discovered a difference between a mental craving and a physical craving. When I’ve had a treat, I’ve really savored it.

Plan for maintenance: “I feel so proud of myself! I’m going to keep doing what I’m doing now – I’m happy and want to continue! Also I’m glad I can come back to you for additional help when I need it”

Runner-up: James

James loved his sugar-sweetened beverages and he felt he needed them to provide energy to get through the day. He was at his highest adult weight and his doctor recently cautioned him about developing disease states. James understood that his habits around food and cravings were a root cause for his weight gain.

“I didn’t even change my exercise but getting rid of the extra sugar helped me to lose 9.8 lbs! I still miss soda sometimes but when I’ve had it recently, it’s too sweet! The strategies Adrienne helped me develop are working. I am having healthier substitutes, distracting myself, and deconstructing cravings. I realized that when I was stressed, soda was ‘the answer’ but now I have better stress management techniques. We cleared out the junk food at the house. My family and I thank you for all that you do!”

3rd place: Dawn

Dawn has lost 6.3 lbs during the past 24 days! She finds the 3pm slump doesn’t happen as much and she’s skipping visits to the vending machine; when she does want a snack, she is making healthier choices.

“Working with my coach has been terrific- she has ideas for every obstacle I tell her about and helps me create my own solutions too!”

Thanks to all Sugar Detox Challengers for your hard work and dedications to living a sweeter (no-sugar added) life!

Curious? Ready to start your own sugar-squashing journey? Our next challenge will start before the holidays on October 2nd!

The Beauty of Ugli Fruit

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“Beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder,” Plato once said. When it comes to the uncommon and sometimes weird produce of other countries, often relegated to one stand in the grocery store, we couldn’t agree more. Whether a dragon fruit, whole young coconut, cherimoyas, or star fruit, you may find a prickly or strange exterior belies a delicious adventure for your tastebuds.

On this particular visit, we picked up a fruit with a rather horrendous complexion and took it home, preparing ourselves for what may lie inside.

But yes, it was beautiful and familiar – in both form and taste. The ugli fruit is a hybrid of grapefruit, orange and tangerine and often hails from Jamaica. Nutritionally speaking, it has fiber, vitamin C, is low-calorie, and has a multitude of vitamins and minerals. Consider eating it as you would an orange or freshly squeezed in mineral water. Enjoy!

Where is your Motivation?

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This writing is inspired by a conversation we had with a realtor last night. A man in his 50s, he had recently lost 12 lbs by “going to a gym and setting goals” for himself. He relayed how, unlike him, one of his female friends has struggled in the weight loss realm– “she texted me last night to say she’s ordering some microwaveable diet boxes sent to her home.” It was hard not to let a groan escape while protesting, “but a client just got off of that stuff and is losing weight; she can do it too!”

Why are some people successful – “I set goals and go after them” – versus those who set goals and 3 days later find their manifesto is buried under the mail on the coffee table?

It’s not like second group didn’t set goals (though typically the goals are too broad to be S.M.A.R.T. ) so why aren’t THEY able to implement them?

Over the years of working with clients, we have noticed a variety of factors playing into a client’s success in reaching their health and lifestyle goals. Readiness for change, motivation, creative problem-solving, dedication, contingency planning, and a willingness to make the financial and time investment for their health all can play a part.

Here’s another way to view motivation

Gretchen Rubin, author of The Happiness Project, has created four categories people may fall into based on how they respond to internal and external motivators. These are the Upholder, Obliger, Questioner, and Rebel. In general, Upholders are motivated by internal and external factors; Questioners want to know what the rules are and why they should follow them (if the reason suits them, they will internalize this for action); Rebels flount the rules while seeking freedom and self-determinism; and Obligers respond to external expectations but not their own internal ones (i.e. the ‘manifesto’ mentioned above) and hate the feeling of letting someone down.

The Upholders we work with are very good executors of recommendations; they are energized by a list of recommendations and like to turn them into to-do lists which they can check off with a sense of accomplishment. They are motivated to not disappoint others (their healthcare provider, for example) and they tend to be very hard on themselves or feel upset when they don’t follow through on their goals or recommendations.

What we see most in our practice are Obligers and here’s what is typically related during the initial consultation:

“I have health issues and am aware of what I should be doing but I’m not sure why I cannot seem to follow through. I’ve been on soooo many diets. My neighbor went gluten-free and lost 20lbs, why can’t I? ” These people float in a sea of information but aren’t sure what to exclude/include, how to synthesize it….or the big one, how to take action in a sustainable manner. They are generally overwhelmed and feel a sense of shame over what they ‘should’ be doing.

As we work together, they enjoy aiming to be a ‘gold star’ client and they end up putting recommendations into place. They receive support when they ‘fall off’ the wagon and are reassured and encouraged to think of how to overcome obstacles to problems. They start taking better care of themselves – not just with food, but by taking time for exercise or reflection.

They are successful in reaching their goals because they have a nutritionist & health coach who understands what motivates them, provides longer-term support, guidance and accountability.

In fact, we are One Bite Wellness are dedicated to ‘walking our talk’ in this arena too. Many clients are surprised when we tell them that we have our own accountability partner and coach. “Well, you already seem to know everything”…..knowledge, as we’ve seen above, doesn’t equal action; having someone to share obstacles with and create sustainable goals, has proven invaluable. 

An important question to ask yourself: what is driving you? Is your motivation internal or external? Where do you fall in the categories mentioned above?

When you understand where your motivation stems from, you’ll have a key to knowing the next step to take towards your goals.