Let kids lead with Jennifer House

July 19, 2017

It's not our job to get our kids to eat. It's our job to supply them with the food at regular times. But from there, they are certainly the best judges of their own appetite 
– Jennifer House

On this episode of the Plan Simple Meals Podcast, I’m really excited to talk with Jennifer House, a mom of three and a registered dietitian, who has a private practice helping moms nourish their families with confidence.

Jennifer works a lot with moms around first foods and early feeding. She follows World Health Organization, American Academy of Pediatrics, Dietitians of Canada recommendations to wait until about 6 months to start solids.

We talk about baby-led weaning, skipping the purees and feeding babies what you eat when they are ready. This makes life easier for parents and allows babies to control how much they want to eat. And when you are feeding your baby what you eat, it can help make meals healthier for everybody since we often want to feed our babies healthy foods.

But we don’t just talk about babies, we talk about setting kids up for good eating habits as they grow.

We talk about:

  • teaching kids to listen to their own bodies regarding how much to eat (and how hard it is for parents to let go and let how much they eat vary from day to day)
  • how behavior can be an indicator of food allergies or sensitivities
  • ideas for what to feed babies: eggs, chili (rinsed to reduce spiciness), meat from a slow cooker, egg or chicken or cucumber from salad . . .
  • how less parental pressure and more kid control can actually help with picky eaters
  • the ways we influence our kids around food through our own behavior whether it is what we eat or how we talk about food or our bodies

 

LINKS

Doable Changes from this episode:

  • MAKE A NO YUCK RULE. Practice not saying “Yuck” or complaining about part of a meal they don’t like. Teach your kids to say “No thank you” or simply leave what they don’t like. For your part, resist the urge to make them eat the food they leave to the side.
  • SERVE A FAMILY MEAL. Instead of catering to picky eaters, make a family meal that reflects the way you want your family to eat. You can make adaptations, like rinsing a spicy chili for babies or adding hot sauce for mom, but serve everyone the same food.
  • GET YOUR KIDS INVOLVED IN GROWING FOOD. This can be a windowsill box of herbs or some lettuce in the backyard. Kids get intrigued with seeing things grow and getting to pick and eat food, which may encourage them to try foods they otherwise would shun. This one takes a little while to take root, but plant something this week or buy some herb plants that kids can start snipping from right away.

101-Doable-Changes-social

REALLY getting healthy as a family can be a big lifestyle change. But no matter how insurmountable it may feel, focusing on one doable change at a time can help you take small steps toward your big goal.

A healthy lifestyle is really made of lots of little things that when repeated regularly and added together over time make a huge impact on your life.

Choose one Doable Change every Sunday night — one thing that you are willing to play with for the week. The key is to keep it doable and fun! Write that thing on a sticky note or your phone so you remember it. Then put 3 things on your calendar that support it.

Choose from the changes above or download a list of 101 Doable Changes we made for you.

http://plansimplemeals.com/101-doable-changes/

If you are as psyched as I am to grow veggies on a patio this summer and indoors all winter, you are going to want to check this out! I have watched friends have these for years, and am so excited to have my own! (Psssst… There are amazing curriculums that have been created by the company, to make these a no brainer for schools too!) Read more here, or contact, tower@plansimplemeals.com to learn more, and set up a free 20 minute phone Q and A.

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Healing Foods with Maria Quintana-Pillinga

July 12, 2017

We can feel sick, and gradually we feel better. We kind of forget how sick we felt. So, we don’t connect what we’re eating to how we felt. – Maria Quintana-Pilling

On this episode of the Plan Simple Meals Podcast, I’m really excited to talk with Maria Quintana-Pilling, Functional Nutrition and Lifestyle Practitioner. She’s a health coach who teaches live and online cooking classes, and she knows a lot about food, so this is going to be a fun conversation!

Health and how we feel in our bodies is a wake up call to a lot of my guests. That was my story as well. Maria started to dabble in nutrition after being diagnosed with fibroids, and after surgery to remove fibroids, she got really serious about it. She found that the changes she made were more nuanced than some people report, but still profound.

We dive into going gluten-free and dairy-free, including why you might want to try it and how to approach it. We look at the difference between gluten-free and grain-free and why to try one over the other.

We talk about:

  • Things you might not have considered when you think about gluten-free (condiments, alcohol, makeup?)
  • How different foods work for different people, how what works for us may change at different stages of our lives, and the kinds of clues your body gives you about foods that may not work for you
  • Why soaking or sprouting grains is important
  • Using pesto and quinoa or rice bowl for more balanced meals
  • Ways of balancing protein, fats and carbs that don’t look like a traditional plate
  • Why detoxes are helpful

maria-podcast-Quotes

BIO

Maria Quintana-Pilling is a certified functional nutritionist and lifestyle practitioner, certified nutrition consultant and natural chef, specializing in digestive and women’s health issues. She received nutrition training from Bauman College in Berkeley, CA, the Tree of Life Rejuvenation Center in Patagonia, AZ, and Holistic Nutrition Lab Full Body Systems. She runs short detoxes and in-person and online cooking classes. She’s is the mom to a 7-year-old son.

LINKS

Contact Maria

Maria’s Urban Spice Nutrition website with summer detox & quinoa bowl recipe

Mia’s Go to Rice bowls

 

Doable Changes from this episode:

  • TRY QUINOA BOWLS. I’ve talked about how I use rice bowls as an easy, adaptable meal, and I love Maria’s suggestion of a quinoa version. Find links to both above. Grain bowls are very adaptable—you can use different grains, proteins, veggies and seasonings. And if you put the different components in separate bowls, it’s easy to adapt for different nutrition needs and tastes. 
  • UPGRADE YOUR SNACKS. Remember that we need a balance of proteins, fats, and carbs. Choose whole food snacks with an aim to include all three. One way to do this is to add some nut butter to a fruit snack.
  • DO A 5-DAY DETOX. A detox gives your liver a break from processed food and refined sugars and other things like caffeine and alcohol, allowing it to do its job better. The first couple of days can be really hard, so it can be usefu l to have the support of a group, but people usually start feeling better around day 3. If you aren’t ready to give up sugar or processed foods altogether, try a detox.

 

101-Doable-Changes-social

 

REALLY getting healthy as a family can be a big lifestyle change. But no matter how insurmountable it may feel, focusing on one doable change at a time can help you take small steps toward your big goal.

A healthy lifestyle is really made of lots of little things that when repeated regularly and added together over time make a huge impact on your life.

Choose one Doable Change every Sunday night — one thing that you are willing to play with for the week. The key is to keep it doable and fun! Write that thing on a sticky note or your phone so you remember it. Then put 3 things on your calendar that support it.

Choose from the changes above or download a list of 101 Doable Changes we made for you.

http://plansimplemeals.com/101-doable-changes/

 

If you are as psyched as I am to grow veggies on a patio this summer and indoors all winter, you are going to want to check this out! I have watched friends have these for years, and am so excited to have my own! (Psssst… There are amazing curriculums that have been created by the company, to make these a no brainer for schools too!) Read more here, or contact, tower@plansimplemeals.com to learn more, and set up a free 20 minute phone Q and A.

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Peace Begins at the Dinner Table

July 5, 2017

Do your family dinners count?

I was 33 and I had five major dreams attained. Handsome husband, check. Three beautiful kids, check. A design company of my own, check. Home owner, check. A white picket fence, check.

These were dreams embedded deep in my soul, since the days of lemonade stands and doll play, and 90210 episodes.

But all the sudden they felt not enough.

My dreams were changing.

I was struggling in my role of mom.

I was exhausted.

I did not know how to cook, and I was being tested by a long list of home items that simply did not exist before kids.

My new dreams included a full night’s sleep, 10 minutes to take a shower without being interrupted, a day away (anywhere) from my family, I'm kidding, a little, but really, what I most wanted was a personal chef..., who would feed all of us and wash the dishes. But somehow those dreams felt wrong. I was a mom, and moms happily make dinner.

The thing I have not mentioned is I gained 85 pounds in my first pregnancy and did not lose it.

One day at my office, at about 3pm. I remember looking up at a stack of Starbucks cups — maybe five — that had collected over the course of the day. I remember thinking I have to get home soon to the kids. I remember wondering what they should have for dinner. I remember feeling exhausted and wondering how that was possible after all that coffee.

I remember knowing that something had to change.

So that day, staring at the coffee cups, I decided to tackle the one thing that felt tangible, my weight.

And the next day — with a little help from a coach — I changed my food.

I had been on a few diets in my life, but this one was different.

I was eating real food.

I tell people the weight melted off. but I am not sure that it was that it happened so fast or it just did not matter.

Within days, I was off 3 medicines that I took daily, and my energy was off the charts (with no coffee!)

I understood for the first time in my life that what I ate was attached to how I feel.

How could I not have known this?

I had added in foods that I had not known existed 2 weeks prior, or if I did, I would have definitely not known what to do with them - kale, collards, cacoa, nori, saurerkraut. .

I needed to get my oxygen mask on first, and once it was securely on, I turned my eyes and heart to my 4-year old daughter who was not thriving.

She did not pay attention in school, she had a hard time sleeping, and she was covered in eczema. And nothing that doctors were prescribing was working — from therapy or cream.

Luckily, I was able to turn to food. One week after no dairy and no gluten, we had a different child. She was rash free, and her teacher felt she had a new child in the classroom.

Meanwhile, I had dove into the world of food. I did this by talking to every health “guru” who would take my call. I learned so much about food and ingredients from this group, but the thing that stuck out to me most was that lots of their kids rebelled and left the house to eat crap.

And this is when I realized my work as a mom was one part food and one part parenting. My goal became learning how to raise kids who would someday become healthy adults.

And to be clear, by healthy I mean mean using all the tools that are in our control and come from the natural world  to avoid sickness and brain fog  — food, sleep, water, exercise to name a few.

We almost always look at what we need to eliminate when we think of getting healthy, whether it’s our health, our kids health or our family’s health, but it is also important to think about what we are putting in — from fruits and veggies to our day to day experiences.

I know the minute I talk about “adding” anything it can feel overwhelming. Who has time to add one more thing? And it’s that concern that is at the very heart of what I want to share with you today.

The food you eat really does make a difference to your health.

Nine servings of fruits and veggies a day. That's the latest recommendation from the new dietary guidelines released by the departments of Agriculture and Health and Human Services.

Lots of research suggests that a diet high in fruits and veggies can lower blood pressure. 1 in 3 American Adults suffer from high blood pressure.

In fact, studies show that a diet rich in vegetables and fruits can lower blood pressure, reduce risk of heart disease and stroke, prevent some types of cancer, lower risk of eye and digestive problems, and have a positive effect upon blood sugar which can help keep appetite in check. (Harvard School of Public Health)

Remember how I said eventually the weight did not matter? Let me explain.

My entire teen and adult life I took a hormone medicine to get my period that made me super depressed. 5 days after I changed my diet, I got a period and it has been regular ever since.

Everyday of my adult life, I took medicine for seasonal allergies, so my drooping puffy eyes would not affect my business. One week in, no more allergy medicine.

Energy off the charts.

Skin glowing.

A year in, I had not taken an antibiotic for my chronic ear infections. In fact, I had not had an ear infection. It has been 7 years now that I’ve been ear infection free.

I know that it can feel difficult to add fruits and veggies when we aren’t in a fruit and veggie culture. We are living in a narrative that says organic cheezy bunny crackers are good for us, donuts are awesome, and why deprive a kid of their childhood?

In fact  why would we prevent our kids from little league, ballet, art class, or  a playdate? Or any of the 100 other activities that keep us busy, and may be preventing us from getting dinner on the table.

Which leads me to the second thing we need — a way to add in more quality time with our families through meals.

This is a big deal.

According to The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University, kids and teens who share family dinners three or more times per week:

  • Are less likely to be overweight
  • Are more likely to eat healthy food
  • Perform better academically
  • Are less likely to engage in risky behaviors (drugs, alcohol, sexual activity)
  • Have better relationships with their parents

Whether good or bad, my guess is you can map some of your food habits back to the kitchen you grew up in.

In my case, we always had dinner together, but I grew up when microwaves came out, TV dinners were the rage, and take out and fast food were a novelty. So we indulged in all of them! It was not about the food.

My guess is that if you are anything like me, food and family dinners can feel like a full-time job assignment, but we don’t have full-time hours to assign to this task.

And if you are really like me, you might not even want to spend those hours in the kitchen, even if you had them!

And that’s what I’m excited to share with you. A way to make all of this happen that works for you, that works for your family.

We don’t have to do all of this at once. In fact, we are far more likely to have success in the long run if we take on one doable change at a time, and focus how to do or consume our doable change in a way that fots into our calendar and lifestyle. You do have to try to fit it.

Experiment with one healthy change a week that will help you change your mind about food or time.

I have expanded of 7 of my doable change:

  1. 101 Doable Changes
  2. 7 Doable Mindset Changes
  3. 7 Doable Kitchen Changes
  4. 7 Doable Planning Changes
  5. 7 Doable Family-focused Changes
  6. 7 Doable Food Changes
  7. 7 Doable Changes of the 2.0 Variety

Focusing on something each week creates momentum.

I have a feeling that you already knew that a clean diet that consists of lots of fruits and veggies is the way to go before I started talking.

We grew up with the phase “an apple a day keeps the doctor away.” Or “eat your veggies before leaving the table.”

Many of us grew up eating as a family around a table.

Somewhere our parents made it look easy, or maybe too hard. Somewhere along the line the grocery store got really complicated with 100s of breakfast cereals, each more exciting than the next to a child’s eye. Somewhere, we got too busy.

But we know the positive impact of fruits and vegetables and coming together each night.

And if I, a non-cooking mom, who had never tried kale or sushi before age 30, who escaped to work in the early days of motherhood to have a break, can make healthy work in my kitchen, then I promise so can you.

Now that you have some strategies that you can start experimenting with in your home, I need you to take a step back and really feel why you want to be healthier and happier in the first place.

I need you to want to step into this role. I need you to understand the importance that dinner at your table will have on your future, your kids future and your larger community.

It is a ripple effect.

Imagine that you feel amazing because of the food you are feeding your body. That means you have energy with or without a cup of coffee. You rarely get sick, but when you do, you bounce back quickly. Your mind feels clear.

Imagine that throwing together a meal is not stressful. Not because you have miraculously turned into June Cleaver or Martha Stewart but because you feel great and you know what you have to do and when you have to do it!

Imagine that dinners are a time you look forward to because you get to connect with your kids. And even when you have a bad day, you know what an impact this 30 minutes has on your children’s future — emotionally and healthwise. Heck, if you are really present and honest, it has this effect on you.

I am not saying this path is easy.

But it is important.

And it can be simple.

What is your next doable change?

What one think will you focus on next week?

That is all you need to know right now.

And then you just have to play with it, and make it work in your life.

If you have gotten this far, you will want to sign up for the calendar cleanse. It is free, and will guide you with a simple calendar prompt each day that will give you time for food — time you already have but got lost in the shuffle of parenting.

peace-begins-at-dinner

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Reframing with Paula Sacco

June 28, 2017

Choosing to look at at a situation with a different perspective or different way can change everything.
– Paula Sacco

On this episode of the Plan Simple Meals Podcast, I’m really excited to talk with Paula Sacco, a certified professional coach who specializes in helping women rediscover, reimagine and redesign their lives in order to fulfill new purposes and connections.

Paula is the mom of three teens, and we talked about what it’s like with older kids. She talks about how friendships change as our kids get older. Sometimes we need to make more of an effort to get together when we aren’t seeing friends at kids activities regularly or because we or our friends get more involved in work.

Friendships aren’t the only thing that changes. Our perception of time changes too. Paula works with a lot of women who want to figure out how to make more time in their lives for themselves and what they want to do—and then as kids get older it turns into almost too much time.

We talk about:

  • How kids health issues can be a way into changing our eating
  • The need to revisit how we eat when new changes occur in our bodies
  • Making a point to sit down for family meals
  • Regularly putting good food in front of the kids so they learn to eat well based on their bodies
  • How things change when you take care of yourself
  • Why it’s important to pay attention to how you talk to yourself
  • The radical self-care of getting away
  • Looking at your life going forward and what you want it to look like

Paula Sacco is a certified professional coach who specializes in helping women rediscover, reimagine and redesign their lives in order to fulfill new purposes and connections. Paula loves building a community of women who transform their lives by focusing more on their individual passions and goals. She lives in the Boston area with her husband, two teenage sons, and her daughter who is spreading her wings at college. So excited to dive in into so many things because I can’t even imagine college.

LINKS

paulasacco.com

paula@paulasacco.com

Paula Sacco Coaching on Facebook

 

Doable Changes from this episode:

  • SET AN INTENTION. Decide what you want your reality to be, like I am a neat person who always puts things away. Write it on a note card. Keep that by your desk and by your bed. Look at it at different points throughout your day.
  • CONNECT REGULARLY WITH FRIENDS. Pick a day, say the third Wednesday of every month, and invite your friends—no RSVPs, just people coming as often as they can. Meet for coffee or to talk about goals, but get together.
  • FIND YOUR WHY. If you want to make a change, knowing why can help you get there. For example, you know “I should workout” why is that important? Keep asking that over and over until you get to that core of why it’s important to you.

REALLY getting healthy as a family can be a big lifestyle change. But no matter how insurmountable it may feel, focusing on one doable change at a time can help you take small steps toward your big goal.

A healthy lifestyle is really made of lots of little things that when repeated regularly and added together over time make a huge impact on your life.

Choose one Doable Change every Sunday night — one thing that you are willing to play with for the week. The key is to keep it doable and fun! Write that thing on a sticky note or your phone so you remember it. Then put 3 things on your calendar that support it.

Choose from the changes above or download a list of 101 Doable Changes we made for you.

http://plansimplemeals.com/101-doable-changes/

If you are as psyched as I am to grow veggies on a patio this summer and indoors all winter, you are going to want to check this out! I have watched friends have these for years, and am so excited to have my own! (Psssst… There are amazing curriculums that have been created by the company, to make these a no brainer for schools too!) Read more here, or contact, tower@plansimplemeals.com to learn more, and set up a free 20 minute phone Q and A.

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Raising Healthy Eaters with Sara Fins

June 21, 2017

On this episode of the Plan Simple Meals Podcast, I’m really excited to talk with Sara Fins, a certified health coach and mom of two. I feel like she and I are really aligned on what we do: helping busy moms create a healthier life through doable changes (without spending a ton of time or money). We talk about how Sara gets her kids to be healthy eaters and how she helps other parents bring more healthy eating to their families.

One of the things we need to do is model healthy eating. Sara starts out telling parents that this isn’t a quick fix. But as kids see you eating something again and again, they start to get curious, and they want to try what you are doing.

Another thing we’re trying to instill in our kids is to listen to how their body feels. Sometimes that means letting them have things that we don’t think of as healthy and letting them see what that feels like. As they get older and have more control, we have to hope they’ve learned from our modeling and reminders to listen to their body and do what feels right for them.

We talk about:

  • Offering healthy options—and choosing them ourselves
  • How to handle birthday parties (and why)
  • Learning to cook through “layering” experience if you don’t even know the basics
  • How to get kids involved in the kitchen
  • Why meal planning and meal prep make healthy eating more doable
  • The importance of eating with your kids

 

BIO

Sara Fins received her training at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition in New York City and is certified by the American Association of Drugless Practitioners. She teaches busy moms to feed themselves and their families better through manageable, practical steps without spending hours in the kitchen or tons of money at the grocery store.

 

LINKS

www.sarafins.com

Healthy Meal Ideas for Kids Facebook group

 

Doable Changes from this episode:

 

  • OFFER A CONSISTENT HEALTHY OPTION. Whether you are just starting to feed your kids, working with picky eaters, or trying to make a shift from eating a lot of processed foods, offering something healthy consistently helps. Serve carrot sticks with every meal along with whatever other veggies you have.

  • TRY COOKING ONE THING NEW. Whatever your confidence level in the kitchen, pick something that seems doable and try it. If you can make a salad, try making your own dressing. If you have cooked a chicken, try making chicken soup. Trial and error isn’t a bad way to learn to cook. You can take classes to get new ideas and techniques, but there is a lot you can learn by just getting in the kitchen and attempting to put a simple meal on the table.  

  • MAKE A MEAL PLAN. Creating a meal plan means you come into each meal knowing what you need to do and knowing you have what you need. No more getting derailed by poor planning. A meal plan doesn’t have to be complicated. It can include cooking a big batch of rice and a big batch of beans early in the week and using them in different ways. It can mean breakfast for dinner. Think simple, but plan.

 

REALLY getting healthy as a family can be a big lifestyle change. But no matter how insurmountable it may feel, focusing on one doable change at a time can help you

take small steps toward your big goal.

A healthy lifestyle is really made of lots of little things that when repeated regularly and added together over time make a huge impact on your life.

Choose one Doable Change every Sunday night — one thing that you are willing to play with for the week. The key is to keep it doable and fun! Write that thing on a sticky note or your phone so you remember it. Then put 3 things on your calendar that support it.

Choose from the changes above or download a list of 101 Doable Changes we made for you.

http://plansimplemeals.com/101-doable-changes/

 

JuicePlus is made of 100% real food and really bridges any gap we have in our diet. My kids and I both take them. I take the capsules and the kids take the gummies. As you eat more whole foods, you’ll want supplements that are made of real food too. You can get started with JuicePlus here.

 

 

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Our Skin with Rachael Pontillo

June 14, 2017

When we're looking at our skin, when we're applying our products, it's really important that we do so with love. –Rachael Pontillo

On this episode of the Plan Simple Meals Podcast, I’m really excited to talk with Rachel Pontillo, who among other things is a certified international health coach, licensed aesthetician and natural skin care formulator and educator. We talking about skin care and how food and what we put on and in our bodies matters.

Rachael has a lot to share on reading labels and on making your own skin products. For starters, she recommends products with short ingredients lists. And while you may have heard the advice not to use products with names you can’t pronounce, she points out that many of us have trouble with Latin names, though these are often used with natural ingredients. She reminds us that all products contain chemicals, we’re choosing between toxicants and safer ingredients or non-toxic ingredients.

Rachael recommend making your own products—and teaches people how to do it. And she is proof that even a busy mom running a business with kids involved in activities can find the time.

We talk about:

  • How to assess skincare products and what ingredients you want to avoid
  • The ways homeschooling opens up different time and what it can teach us and our kids
  • What oils to keep in your skin care pantry and how to use essential oils safely
  • How to use clay and what’s in your kitchen to make a simple skin clarifying mask
  • Getting kids involved in decision-making and skin care products
  • Why taking care of your skin at night matters
  • The “Skin Trigger Trifecta”: gluten, sugar and dairy and why changing how you eat really affects your skin

Rachael Pontillo is the best-selling author of Love Your Skin, Love Yourself and co-author of The Sauce Code. She’s an AADP and IAAHC board certified international health coach, a licensed aesthetician and natural skin care formulator and educator. She’s the president and co-founder of the Nutritional Aesthetics Alliance and creator of the popular skin care and healthy lifestyle blog “Holistically Hot” and the 6-week online course “Create Your Skin Care.” She’s also an avid herbalist, self-professed skin care ingredient junkie and lifelong learner. And, of course, she’s also a mama.

LINKS

rachaelpontillo.com
createyourskincare.com
http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/
https://www.thinkdirtyapp.com/
MadeSafe.org
Soup Making Guide

Doable Changes from this episode:

  • START THE DAY WITH A GREEN SMOOTHIE. Racheal and I both do this. Rachel loves green smoothies because they add both fiber and hydration, which helps with elimination. There are a lot of good reasons to love green smoothies. Try it for one week and see if it changes your skin (or anything else for you!)
  • BUY OR MAKE ONE PRODUCT. Don’t feel like you have to toss everything you use. Choose one you are running out of or one that you think is particularly problematic. Make or buy something better and try it for one week.

  • GIVE YOURSELF CREDIT. Rachael points out that any change toward a healthy lifestyle takes time and involves choices. Don’t get hung up on whether you are doing it right—give yourself credit for the changes you make.

101-Doable-Changes-social

REALLY getting healthy as a family can be a big lifestyle change. But no matter how insurmountable it may feel, focusing on one doable change at a time can help you take small steps toward your big goal.

A healthy lifestyle is really made of lots of little things that when repeated regularly and added together over time make a huge impact on your life.

Choose one Doable Change every Sunday night — one thing that you are willing to play with for the week. The key is to keep it doable and fun! Write that thing on a sticky note or your phone so you remember it. Then put 3 things on your calendar that support it.

Choose from the changes above or download a list of 101 Doable Changes we made for you.

http://plansimplemeals.com/101-doable-changes/

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No More Tolerating with Julia Sarver

June 8, 2017

We can reframe how we look at how we eat together as a family.
– Julia Sarver

On this episode of the Plan Simple Meals Podcast, I’m really excited to talk with Julia Sarver, a holistic health coach and business strategist for health coaches. She’s run her own health coaching practice based in Portland, Oregon since 2009 and has led over 1,000 clients to success with her short detox program (we’ll dive into that).

Julia and I talk about what it’s like eating outside the norm. Julia’s mom is from Denmark and had ideas about food that didn’t fit the Standard American Diet, so Julia grew up eating healthy meals and not having dessert every day. Even so a health crisis made her take a new look at what she was eating.

We talk about detoxing and the mindwork around making major changes in how you eat. Julia is all about getting people to make the better decision in the moment—and showing them how much better they can feel. We both agree that too many people tolerate things in their lives because they don’t realize how much better it could be.

We talk about:

  • How Julia found out her body couldn’t handle gluten or dairy (she was convinced that she’d never eat anything delicious again)—and how she felt when she cut them out

  • Why short detoxes are successful—they’re approachable and and you have a moment when you rebel and decide to up and quit

  • Trusting our bodies and how we feel, not just studies

  • Simplifying meal routines and meal planning and having a list of go-to places to give yourself a break

  • Finding a way for you to eat that works for you without you feeling guilty about it

  • And Julia’s best birthday meal ever.

 

BIO

Julia Sarver is a holistic health coach and business strategist for health coaches. She’s run her own health coaching practice based in Portland, OR, since 2009 and has led over 1,000 clients to success with her short detox program. She’s also the mom to the world’s cutest 3-year old. Julia loves a giant salad with a side of fries, and doesn’t like sugar-coated anything—including advice.

 

LINKS

eatwithoutapology.com

 

Doable Changes from this episode:

  • FOCUS ON THE POSITIVE. If you are making changes to your diet, focus on what you can eat, instead of what you can’t. Stock up on delicious foods that fit your new way of eating, so that when you are hungry you can eat something yummy that serves your body.

  • WRITE DOWN WHAT’S GOING ON WITH YOUR BODY. Keep a journal about how you feel—did you sleep poorly, have gas, feel bloated, get tired at 1PM . . . It’s easy to overlook symptoms until you start to see how often they happen. Knowing what is happening in your body (and that you can do something about it) is a doable step toward deciding to make a change.

  • SIMPLIFY MEAL ROUTINES AND PLANNING. Have a few go-to breakfasts that you put in rotation. Simply what you cook—few ingredients, steamed veggies. It doesn’t have to be fancy to be healthy. Focus on what works, not what you think you “should” be making.
     

REALLY getting healthy as a family can be a big lifestyle change. But no matter how insurmountable it may feel, focusing on one doable change at a time can help you take small steps toward your big goal. 

A healthy lifestyle is really made of lots of little things that when repeated regularly and added together over time make a huge impact on your life.

Choose one Doable Change every Sunday night — one thing that you are willing to play with for the week. The key is to keep it doable and fun! Write that thing on a sticky note or your phone so you remember it. Then put 3 things on your calendar that support it.

Choose from the changes above or download a list of 101 Doable Changes we made for you.

http://plansimplemeals.com/101-doable-changes/

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Food Freedom with Elaine Gardner

June 1, 2017

Once I made the commitment to find a way to get better, things that I never heard of just kept showing up in my life.
– Elaine Gardner

On this episode of the Plan Simple Meals Podcast, I’m so excited to talk with holistic health expert Elaine Gardner. Elaine’s experience with debilitating pain during her period, intestinal discomfort, seasonal allergies, brain fog, severe fatigue, and horrible muscle spasms led her to her holistic lifestyle.

Elaine began her body healing journey with supplements and a variety of bodywork. When her son got ear infection after ear infection and had endless childhood viruses, she also used body work with him to reduce the problem.

Elaine has made changes to her food and taught her kids to pay attention to food and how it affects them. Elaine explains how she made small steps toward change and how she encourages people to do the same.

We talk about:

  • What our hormonal system does (so much more than we think)
  • Why we need to control stress
  • What we teach our kids and how they navigate their bodies and food as they get older
  • How to find alternative medicine practitioners for kids (and why it’s worth paying for services for our kids and ourselves)
  • The power of sleep and water
  • Why we have to learn not to just push through

Elaine Gardner is a holistic health expert. She’s working on a new program called Food Freedom, a guide to loving and planning and buying the right food for your health. Elaine helps people find the right foods that serve them and their health.

LINKS

http://www.designyourhealthylife.com

Doable Changes from this episode:

 

  • COMMIT TO MORE SLEEP. For one week, make a commitment to getting more (and quality) sleep. Remove electronics from your bedroom. Make sure the room is dark. If you have to get up at a certain time, get yourself to bed earlier. And if you get woken up in the night, work on an alternative—have a partner take over childcare one night, allow yourself to nap the next day.

  • CHOOSE ONE FOOD CATEGORY TO CHANGE. Elaine talks about taking fruit juice out of the house and then cutting out non-organic foods. Pick one thing to adjust this week. Get it out of the house and buy a healthier alternative. Maybe you cut out sugary juices or only buy organic produce this week.

  • PUT YOURSELF FIRST. As moms, it can be hard to take care of ourselves. You have to make the effort and put yourself first; it’s not selfish it’s actually the best thing you can do for the other people in your life. So choose what you will do for yourself and put it on your calendar. Then make that a non-negotiable appointment.

REALLY getting healthy as a family can be a big lifestyle change. But no matter how insurmountable it may feel, focusing on one doable change at a time can help you take small steps toward your big goal.

A healthy lifestyle is really made of lots of little things that when repeated regularly and added together over time make a huge impact on your life.

Choose one Doable Change every Sunday night — one thing that you are willing to play with for the week. The key is to keep it doable and fun! Write that thing on a sticky note or your phone so you remember it. Then put 3 things on your calendar that support it.

Choose from the changes above or download a list of 101 Doable Changes we made for you.

http://plansimplemeals.com/101-doable-changes/

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Busyness is a Distraction with Deb Blum

May 24, 2017

When we don’t feel strong within ourselves, we tend to be sort of tumbled about by all of the outside influences of what we should be doing.  

– Deb Blum

On this episode of the Plan Simple Meals Podcast, I’m really excited to talk with transformational coach Deb Blum. She helps moms find more freedom, fun and fulfillment within the lives that they live right now. You know I believe in doable changes, and Deb is about working with the life you already have. Love that!

Deb and I talk about how to help your kids thrive by showing up with confidence and solidity, whether it’s about what you serve for dinner or anything else. We talk about our own paths of getting past all the “shoulds” to do just that—and how to be solid and flexible at the same time.

We talk about busyness related to those shoulds and as a form of distraction. Deb says, “Whenever I decide to do something, I seem to always have time to do what I decide to do.” We talk about making time for by choosing what’s really important to us.

We talk about:

  • How parenting demands shift as our kids change—and how to stay involved as they grow
  • How we bring our own food challenges to the table and still get our kids past them
  • The fact that busyness is a distraction and setting decision parameters to help say no to busy
  • The ripple effects of turning your focus back to yourself
  • Going paperless as a form of freedom
  • How tapping into our own enoughness changes everything

Deb is a coach, consultant and speaker. She is a creative problem solver and freedom catalyst, who helps set moms free from all of the perceived limitations that they have. As a catalyst, she guides people into greater acceptance of of who they are, because that acceptance alone brings so much inner peace and happiness. She believes that we can transform our lives within the life we already lead.

LINKS

Debblum.com

Doable Changes from this episode:

  • Know your goals and let them guide every decision for one week. So if your goal is to be healthy and strong so you can be active with your family, apply that to decisions about what you eat and do. Make your decision and be confident and firm with it. This works wonders with reacting to kids responses to what’s for dinner (and sometimes even helps cut back on negative responses.)
  • Set decision-making criteria for saying no. This can look a lot of different ways. You might say I’ll only volunteer if I’m actually engaging with my kids (no committee work) or we only do activities two nights a week or we spend time as a family on Sunday, so we say no to invitations. Having decision-making guidelines helps you easily weed out things that don’t fit your personal and family values.

  • Go paperless for a week. Deb talked about the freedom of being paperless and the tools she uses to be paperless. Try being paperless for one week—use your phone or your iPad for note taking. Create a digital binder of meal plans and recipes. Experiment with tools to make paperless work for you.

 

101-Doable-Changes-social

 

REALLY getting healthy as a family can be a big lifestyle change. But no matter how insurmountable it may feel, focusing on one doable change at a time can help you take small steps toward your big goal.

A healthy lifestyle is really made of lots of little things that when repeated regularly and added together over time make a huge impact on your life.

Choose one Doable Change every Sunday night — one thing that you are willing to play with for the week. The key is to keep it doable and fun! Write that thing on a sticky note or your phone so you remember it. Then put 3 things on your calendar that support it.

Choose from the changes above or download a list of 101 Doable Changes we made for you.

 

 

vitamix-ad

This episode is brought to us by Vitamix. If you have been part of my world for awhile, then you know how much I love my Vitamix. I use it to make smoothies, dips, dressings, sauces, soups, pudding, batter. I would say I use it a minimum of three times a day. I have created an ebook for you that you can get at plansimplemeals.com/vitamix that has my 10 favorite Vitamix Recipes, as well as a discount code if you are thinking about getting a Vitamix yourself.

 

 

 

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Busy is a Choice with Amanda Hinman

May 17, 2017

Are we giving ourselves permission to step back and say “But wait...what do we really want to be doing?”
– Amanda Hinman

On this episode of the Plan Simple Meals Podcast, I’m really excited to talk with Amanda Hinman, who helps moms get in touch with their intuition, improve communication, and finding time for yourself. Amanda’s life looks pretty amazing right now, but a few years back, her oldest daughter was struggling with seizures. Amanda’s husband’s anxiety was through the roof with a stressful job and the family health issues, and Amanda’s autoimmune condition was exacerbated. She felt guilty and helpless as a mom. Things shifted for Amanda when she started working on her own self-care. That had a ripple effect her whole family. She is the momma of four girls. Amanda says, that her life isn’t perfect now, but “It’s an ongoing journey of “let’s have fun together and let’s connect and let’s use our time in ways that we enjoy instead of feeling this obligation to-do list.”

Amanda and I talk about how we, as moms, are experts on our own kids—and we need to tap into our intuition. Amanda talks about listening to her own intuition in dealing with her daughter’s health and tells her clients: I’m not the expert on your child. You are the expert on your child. I’m going help you unpack those layers you need to tap into that intuition.

We agree that busy is a choice. Amanda shows us how to decide the way you want to live your life instead of feeling like you’re a victim of circumstances. If you have kids in lots of activities, you need to ask yourself: Are we giving ourselves permission to step back and say “But wait...what do we really want to be doing?” instead of doing what you feel like you should be doing.

We talk about:

  • the importance of down time
  • how to take baby steps toward the life you want to be living
  • what to do when you are already overscheduled
  • how to help your kids make healthy decisions about activities and downtime
  • how we make food choices that support the life we want and our own individual circumstances
  • how to communicate about all these things by starting from the same place.

Amanda runs the Hinman Holistic Health Institute and knows first hand how getting in touch with your intuition, improving communication, and finding time for yourself create ripples of change throughout your family and life.

LINKS

Get in touch with Amanda or to get her free Vibrant Child Starter Kit

Spunky Coconut’s Bean Cake

Podcast with Stacey Martino

 

Doable Changes from this episode:

  • Lean into your intuition. It may feel hard when you are in the doctor’s office, but the saying “mother knows best” is wise.

  • Prioritize dinner. This may mean saying no to a few things, but feel what shifts at home.

  • Look at your calendar with a lens of “Is this serving me?” Don’t quit everything today, but feel into where you can fit in more family downtime (hint: it could be dinner!).

REALLY getting healthy as a family can be a big lifestyle change. But no matter how insurmountable it may feel, focusing on one doable change at a time can help you take small steps toward your big goal.

A healthy lifestyle is really made of lots of little things that when repeated regularly and added together over time make a huge impact on your life.

Choose one Doable Change every Sunday night — one thing that you are willing to play with for the week. The key is to keep it doable and fun! Write that thing on a sticky note or your phone so you remember it. Then put 3 things on your calendar that support it.

Choose from the changes above or download a list of 101 Doable Changes we made for you.

http://plansimplemeals.com/101-doable-changes/

If you are as psyched as I am to grow veggies on a patio this summer and indoors all winter, you are going to want to check this out! I have watched friends have these for years, and am so excited to have my own! (Psssst… There are amazing curriculums that have been created by the company, to make these a no brainer for schools too!) Read more here, or contact, tower@plansimplemeals.com to learn more, and set up a free 20 minute phone Q and A.

 

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