Candida Cleanse- Week 1

Ahhhh! I can’t believe I’m actually writing a blog post. This is crazy. It’s been since March. I don’t have any good reason why I stopped blogging. I have some ideas (I won’t bore you) but I am getting the urge to blog a little bit more so I decided to just do it today.

I guess part of the reason I’ve not been blogging for the past 6 months is because I’ve just felt kind of crappy. I don’t know why.  I don’t want to put on a facade of “everything is just perfect” when it’s not. I’ve been dealing with symptoms like anxiety and depression, fatigue and just not feeling “myself”. I’ve been going to a naturopath and have been tested for everything under the sun….you name it…. MTHFR, Adrenal Fatigue, Thyroid issues, hormones, parasites, etc. Everything negative. Great right???? Yeah I guess, but it doesn’t explain why I still feel crappy.

So I don’t know, I don’t think there’s one “answer” or “diagnosis” that I am looking for anyway. I have always been known to have a little bit of hypochondria, so I try to go about my life and just not focus on it. Google is enemy #1.

Again, I don’t think that this is the end-all be-all answer to everything, but I came across Christa Orrechio’s Candida Cleanse program from listening to The Balanced Bites podcast (duh). When I first read about candida I was like “whatever I probably have it but there’s no way I could do that for 8 weeks”. Candida is technically “yeast” but sometimes it can become overblown in the body and affect other body systems. It is caused by overuse of antibiotics and over consumption of processed sugar and carbs. (This is a very simplified explanation. Read more here).


An overgrowth of Candida can definitely be causing some of these mystery symptoms I’ve been having. There isn’t really a “lab” test for it but I did her spit test and I did test positive. I mean it makes sense. I used to take antibiotics a ton when I was little, I tend to get really addicted to sugar and I was on birth control for over 6  years (also a factor).

So I’m to to point now where I’m like….okay….this is going to be hard but it’s not going to hurt. Over the past couple months I’m like back and forth between “why am I restricting food, this is stupid, I am making myself miserable” and “I really have to do this for my health”. I decided to just go ahead and try the candida cleanse. It’s not going to be easy. Because I tend to really torture myself once I start these food challenges and my mind tries to convince myself that it really isn’t worth it. Lately though I have been feeling like every day is a struggle to get through and I really think this is worth a shot. Do I think this is going to be the end of every health struggle I’ve ever had? No. But if there’s one thing I know for sure about myself through all of my health and food journeys is I have a sugar problem. I always feel great when I cut it out. So if an overgrowth of candida is a problem in my body, I bet trying to starve and kill it will definitely make me feel better. At worst I don’t think it will hurt. Physically at least.

I wanted to do a blog post to somewhat hold myself accountable. Plus I miss blogging :). The diet isn’t all different than how I usually eat (Paleo).

  • No grains
  • No dairy
  • No sugar (honey, maple syrup, etc)
  • No fruit except green apples, berries and citrus.
  • Limit starches
  • No alcohol

I was pleasantly surprised to find you can eat starchy foods, you just have to limit them. Same with fruit. Traditionally I have the most trouble cutting out alcohol for long periods of time. I can go a couple weeks here and there but social pressures usually make me want to have a drink at some point. For the past month I haven’t even really been drinking because I have been trying to figure out all these health issues, so I’m not even nervous about that part. I know it’s going to be tough mentally but since the program costs money, I really need to give this a shot. SO today I spent all day prepping and making food for the upcoming week.

20150920_165149This is a coconut flour crusted quiche with swiss chard, sweet potato and BACON. I  love using all of my homegrown ingredients (including the chard, eggs and BACON!!!).

20150920_165208Brussels sprouts for lunch. I am going to make tuna salad to go along with this.

I also made some coconut milk ice cream for dessert. It helps having lots of fresh ingredients that I can take right from my garden! This year was awesome for the garden (I guess I’ll save for another post). Here was today’s harvest:


Anyway, hopefully I will remember to do weekly updates, and I hope this inspires me to start blogging again. I miss writing!

What is the biggest challenge you have with “food” challenges involving restriction? For me it’s social pressures and FOMO.


Should you give up coffee?

You’re probably wondering WHY in the world would anyone ever give up coffee, am I right?

I was one of those people, just a short time ago. So why did I give it up?


Rewinding a bit, to give you a background I cut back my coffee from roughly 3-4 cups a day to 1 cup a day about a year and a half ago. I was never one to say that I totally needed or depended on it, but I really do love the taste and smell and ritual of coffee. I just couldn’t totally give it up.

In January I saw a naturopath who told me I should try avoiding caffeine. I have been dealing with pretty bad stress and anxiety, and coffee is a stimulant which causes cortisol (stress hormone) spikes. I pretty much rolled my eyes and thought to myself- ‘yeah right ’ at the time. Besides, I only had one cup a day, and seriously how bad could that be for you right?

You’ve probably heard that coffee is good for you (I latched onto those articles to justify my addiction….). It probably can be. There have been studies linking it to all sorts of good stuff….all you have to do is type in “coffee benefits” and see what happens.

I guess about a week after I saw the naturopath I woke up one day and I was like “I’m not going to drink coffee this week and see what happens”. So I did it! I was having such crippling anxiety at that point I felt like would try anything.

So what happened? Honestly, not much. I didn’t feel like it had an effect on my anxiety and stress. If anything I kind of felt MORE depressed. It’s pretty hard to go teach a group of 20-25 eighth graders in the morning without coffee. I found myself just with no pep in my step that I usually had in the morning.

But I’m here to tell you that it wasn’t that bad. I didn’t die. Besides the lack of pep, I pretty much didn’t see any effects of giving up coffee- good or bad. I read that I would sleep better. That didn’t really happen. I read that I would have terrible headaches. That didn’t happen. But once I went a week, and then two weeks, and then a month I didn’t really feel the need to start drinking it again. I know there’s something not right with my health right now and I don’t feel like I should compromise it by relying on caffeine. I feel like I’m fine without it or just drinking half-caf so I’m not going to make any moves back to it when it’s not necessary. I think coffee is for healthy people, and I don’t feel that way right now, so I’m not going to chance it. Hopefully soon I can get to the bottom of the health issues I’ve been dealing with.

In the meantime, I’ve tried some other coffee alternatives that have worked out quite well! This is Teeccino, if you haven’t heard of it. It is herbal tea that “tastes” like coffee. Some people love it and some hate it. I found it to be a great alternative. I mean, it’s not coffee people, but it’s still a warm, delicious drink in the morning.


I also have tried my share of loose leaf tea. My cousin got me a tea set for Christmas and I have been using it often.


This is another coffee alternative- dandelion root. I think it’s a generic version of Dandy Blendtea. This is also alright, but not coffee.


And there’s always decaf! Which I’ll have a couple of times a week. I have half caf occasionally as well.

I think cutting out caffeine is something everyone should try at least once. If you feel like you need coffee to live, it’s probably a clue that something else is off in your body. When your body is truly healthy then you can decide if you want to add it back in!

Here’s some other resources from trusted people talking about coffee:

Chris Kresser: Is drinking coffee good for you?

Robb Wolf

The Coffee Manifesto: Whole 9

Do you think you’d ever be able to give up coffee?


What I ate {and drank} in Key Largo

I’ve mentioned before that I feel that vacations are all about the food. My husband and I had a disappointing food experience at our honeymoon (Dominican Republic) and after that I vowed that I would never do the all inclusive thing again! It’s just not my thing. I’m not a “quantity over quality” type of person when it comes to my food.

The food in the Keys did NOT disappoint!  Omg, fresh seafood and delicious key lime pie. Not to mention the drinks. I know you’re just dying to find out what I ate. I endured being “that person” taking pictures of every meal and drink for this so enjoy!

I think the first night there I had my best meal at Snappers. The whole time on the plane I was craving a margarita so that’s what my first drink was! It was fine but pricey for how small it was! My meal made up for it though.



It was the restaurant’s special- Hogfish (I’d never heard of it before) with a conch (pronounced CONK) crust and a key lime sauce. OMG! It was supposed to be over mashed potatoes but I subbed sweet potato fries because duh.
I obviously had to end my meal with key lime pie.


The next morning we hit up a restaurant for breakfast that had great reviews on Yelp (Made to Order Cafe). It also had some of the best food we ate there. We ended up going twice! The first day I had the “Country Eggs Benedict” which was eggs Benedict with BBQ pulled pork underneath. I had to have grits on the side since I was in the south! The grits were probably just boxed and not really worth it but the eggs Benedict was out of this world.


That afternoon while laying on the beach I had to indulge in this:


Because why not?

In Key West we went to another recommended restaurant called Pepe’s cafe, which looked like nothing from the outside.


But it was amazing!! I started the party with the drink special which was a strawberry blueberry screwdriver. Had a couple of those, one accidentally ended up on my (and my husband’s) lap.


For breakfast I went with the special which was another version of eggs benedict. It had scrambled eggs on the bottom, hogfish with hollandaise sauce and spinach and tomato. On the side was a scallion potato pancake.


That night at dinner in Key West was pretty good. Another yelp recommendation- Southernmost Point Cafe. The view was excellent. I got pork tacos with corn on the cob. I don’t know why I didn’t stick with the seafood theme!


We also got some great key lime pie in key west at Kermit’s Key Lime but I was too busy shoving it in my face to take a picture. It was the best key lime pie I had there (or ever).

And I guess I didn’t take any pictures of my food the third day! We ended up back at the same breakfast place since it was so hard to decide the first time we were there. And I think I was too cold at dinner to worry about taking a picture! The view was nice but the wind was cold!

I love doing these recaps because it makes me realize how much fun I had! And how much food I ate and drank!

Do you splurge on food and drink while on vacation?
What are some good places you’ve been in the keys?


Key Largo Vacation 2015

Back to reality and below zero temperatures this week. A terribly rude awakening considering I spent last week enjoying temps that were 60+ in Florida. Nothing like a vacation to make you question why the hell you ever chose to live in the Northeast. Spring is coming. Spring is coming. Spring is coming. (Just keep telling yourself that).

I wanted to share, more for more sake, some of the wonderful times I had last week in Key Largo and Key West with my husband and in-laws.


We stayed at Ocean Pointe Suites, which is a condo complex in Key Largo. I was worried because the reviews seemed to be hit or miss, depending on who owns your condo. We lucked out because ours was amazing (clean, beautiful, large and right on the water). Sorry I didn’t take pictures of the inside but this was the view from my deck. If you found this blog from a search of the place, we had room 4416 and it was awesome.


The first day the weather was beautiful! We hit up a local state park for some kayaking. No pictures because I didn’t wanna drop my phone in the water. Shortly after we were done I took up camp on the beach!


Ahhhh……to be right there again.



The first day was really warm and I managed to get sunburn on my legs. Oh well. The following days weren’t quite as warm, but I’ll take 65-70 degrees over the balmy 2 degrees it was here today. The next day we drove from Key Largo to Key West (about a 2 hour drive). We planned on eating, walking around, shopping and enjoying some drinks! I’ll share more about the amazing food I ate on WIAW this week (or next week if I don’t have time).

There were chickens everywhere in Key West! I don’t know why I was so interested in them considering I owned chickens.



Hogs Breath Cafe was cool.


Duval Street. It was raining when we got there :(


Drinks for breakfast!


Cutting in line at the southernmost point:


This was the view from the restaurant we ate at Key West. It cleared up in the afternoon but was still a little chilly by Florida standards.


The next day was beautiful but also a little chilly and windy. It was about 60 degrees and it was hilarious seeing everyone in Florida wearing winter coats, hats and gloves! I kid you not! It was unreal.



We did a little shopping and ended up at a restaurant in the afternoon. There was a little disappointment over the weather but I mean looking at it now you can’t really complain. I’d give anything for it to be at least 30 degrees here!


This was Robbie’s Marina, there was a restaurant, a Marina where you could rent boats or charters, and a cute little section of shops. It was fun!



Another highlight of the trip was the Islamorada Brewing Company. I was surprised there weren’t more craft breweries around and the bartender explained that there are a lot more regulations to get around than in NY.



Their beers we really light and delicious. After a misunderstanding about just how many flights we should order, I was forced to drink all of these. Pull my leg, I guess.


Later that night for dinner I went to a restaurant one of my friends recommended. The sunset there was beautiful, but once the sun went down the wind was COLD which made it hard to enjoy our food. We quickly boxed up our food once the sun was down. Couldn’t beat the view!



All in all despite some less than ideal temperatures the Keys were awesome! Now I’m back suffering in the cold. Help!

However I don’t think I’ll ever top the vacation to Charleston where Austin and I got engaged, and once we got back from Florida I started begging him to go back to Charleston! I hope we can next year.

Have you been to the Florida Keys? What were your favorite spots?


What I ate Wednesday: Pulled Pork

I ate some pretty delicious food that I couldn’t help but share today, so I’m linking up with Jenn for What I ate Wednesday!

Another crazy thing was me actually remembering to take a picture of (mostly) everything I ate (Tuesday) Be sure to check out the link up to check out her and many many other blogger’s eats for the day.

I’ve been trying out A LOT of different things for breakfast since school started in the fall. First I started with just smoothies since I was working out in the morning….then when I stopped working out I started doing full on meals again (went well with my Whole 30). This week I am doing hemp smoothies with two hard boiled eggs for some extra protein. We were away last weekend and I wanted something quick and easy instead of prepping my usual egg casserole. I am enjoying this fast and easy breakfast as opposed to trying to stomach a whole huge meal.


I use three tablespoons of Nutiva Organic Hemp Protein, a tablespoon of cocoa, a banana, coconut milk and a tablespoon of flaxseed. Not the sweetest, milk-shakeyest smoothie out there but full of real food!

(Two un-pictured hardboiled eggs!)

Lunch- leftovers from the night before


{Cilantro Shrimp Stir-Fry from the 21-Day Sugar Detox Cookbook}

Yes that is some white rice! It was only about 1/4 cup. This was the first time I included white rice with my dinner since going Paleo! It’s usually a food-with-no-brakes for me. It was mostly laziness. Cauliflower rice is SO messy!

Also with the leftovers for lunch I enjoyed a yummy salad of greens topped with tomatoes, cucumbers, LOVE beets, and roasted broccoli and sweet potatoes I cooked up on Sunday. Sprinkled with pumpkin seeds.


When I got home I had a chiropractor appointment, so I enjoyed a quick spoonful of Paleo cookie dough before running out the door. I rushed to the appointment only to sit there waiting for a half an hour. #aintnobodygottimefodat


Dinner was really what took the cake…..all day I had a huge pork roast in the crock pot (I followed the kalua pork recipe from Nom Nom Paleo Cookbook) which resulted in this pulled pork deliciousness:


{cue Hallelujah music} I don’t know if people realize how easy pulled pork is. I had this sitting in the crockpot all day and came home and it was done! Love easy dinners like that.

I made BBQ sauce from Well Fed 2and topped it with jalepenos. Alongside some plantain fries, of course.


Such crappy photography, but such delicious food.

And after I finish this post I will end up eating some banana bread from The Paleo Kitchen. SO that’s everything I ate Tuesday. So delicious! I have been feeling a bit more upbeat lately and I’m glad. Maybe it has to do with the fact I WILL BE IN FLORIDA IN LESS THAN TWO WEEKS! Yes we just got hit with a snowstorm but I feel like I can see a light at the end of the tunnel. Anyway, enjoy your hump day!

*Some of these links were affiliate links
What was the best thing you ate yesterday!?


Paleo Cookie Dough + Weekend Eats

Everyone has time for a blog post when it’s a snow day! I really did just need a good snow day. One more day to ignore responsibilities of work, languish around doing nothing and not feel bad about it. That’s what snow days are for!


I could definitely use one considering we did a lot of traveling and were out and about in Syracuse this weekend. It was an amazing weekend filled with friends and eating all the things. Also, my first sip of alcohol since New Years. Contrary to what I said or promised on January first, I’m not never drinking alcohol again. March is coming.

Anyway I got a chance to try out a great new restaurant and an old favorite this weekend- Notch 8 in Jamesville.


I was going back and forth between this (Salmon with arugula salad and sweet potato puree) and a burger. This was absolutely delicious albiet I was still hungry afterwards! My sister got a burger that I was subsequently drooling over. But it left room for gelato for dessert! No picture, sorry.

The next day we visited the obvious Syracuse choice, Dinosaur BBQ. OMG is pretty much all I need to say.


Ribs, BBQ brisket, coleslaw, turkey neck collard greens and cornbread. The cornbread was everything. Obviously, my Whole30 is dunzo. I had a beer along with my meal that was called “Smoked Dino Porter”. The waitress said they use the wood that they use to smoke the meat to make the beer. Yum. After that we hit up Middle Ages Brewery for some more deliciousness. No picture again, sorry I fail.

After that weekend I was glad to get a call this morning letting me know I had another day off! Snow days call for breakfasts like this:

snow day breakfast

Eggs with hot sauce, plantain fries with sun butter. Perfect!

Anyways I was bored and had some random leftover ingredients left to make a delicious “paleo” treat. I was supposed to make snack balls but when I pulled it out of the food processor it really looked like cookie dough so I went with it. If you’re craving an egg-less paleo friendly cookie dough you can enjoy right off the spoon- this is it! Super easy to make and just has 4 ingredients! It’s gluten free, refined sugar free and BS free!

cookie dough2

paleo cookie dough


Paleo Cookie Dough
Serves 1
Eat it with a spoon! Just 4 ingredients!
Write a review
Prep Time
5 min
Prep Time
5 min
  1. 1/2 cup raw cashews
  2. 1/4 cup coconut butter
  3. 5-6 dates
  4. Handful of chocolate chips * for full dairy and soy free use Enjoy Life
  5. *If you have super-human self control or want more servings this can be easily doubled or tripled!
  1. Place the cashews and the dates in a food processor and pulse until the mixture starts coming together.
  2. Add the coconut butter and keep processing until the mixture is uniform.
  3. Fold in chocolate chips. Enjoy!
Pencils and Pancakes
What do you like to do on Snow days?

Have you ever been to Dinosaur BBQ?


Paleo Crockpot Venison Stew

A lot of people have a “love it” or “won’t touch it” attitude when it comes to venison. However I don’t really have a choice due to the fact it comprises about 50% of what I have in my freezer right now!

I definitely don’t mind! Venison isn’t my favorite meat, but it was more or less free and that’s what makes it so good! My husband got a deer in the fall and we processed it here and saved it all with our vacuum saver. Voila- non-supermarket unadulterated

meat in the freezer and I basically didn’t have to do a thing!

Venison is also higher in protein, lower in calories and higher in some vitamins than beef! I prefer the taste of beef, when I cook venison with a variety of different flavors that compliment it, I can hardly tell the difference!


The main benefit for me is obtaining meat that hasn’t been raised by our industrial meat system. Sometimes I don’t get why people don’t want to eat venison because they think of a “cute deer” or something. I mean that deer probably had a better life and death than the cow from the burger you ate from your supermarket meat so there’s little to that argument. And if you’ve been reading my blog for a bit you know I have experience with eating animals that I’ve raised!

Anyway, I bet you were hoping for the recipe sometime soon. This venison stew is super fast to prepare and easy! I made it in about 10 minutes on Sunday before I went to the gym in the morning and it was done by dinner time. Feel free to add potatoes or other root vegetables of your liking. We ate the stew with side salads and still had enough leftovers for the next night! Enjoy!


Paleo Crockpot Venison Stew
Serves 5
A hearty, warm dish perfect for a cold night!
Write a review
Prep Time
10 min
Prep Time
10 min
  1. 1-2 lbs venison stew meat (cubed chunks)
  2. 9-10 carrots, peeled and diced
  3. 2 white onions, sliced
  4. 1 clove garlic, minced
  5. 4 cups beef or chicken broth
  6. 3/4 can of tomato paste
  7. 1/2 cup red wine
  8. 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  9. 1 tsp salt
  10. 1 tsp pepper
  11. 2 tsp dried oregano
  12. 2 tsp fresh rosemary
  13. 2 bay leaves
  1. Place everything in the crock pot and cook on low for 8-10 hours, or until the meat is tender.
  2. Salt, pepper and season to taste.
Pencils and Pancakes

 This is a great recipe for a weeknight- virtually no dishes and leftovers for the second night (depending on how big your family is). If venison isn’t your thing you can easily sub beef!

Are you a fan of venison?

What are your favorite easy weeknight meals?



What I’ve been eating lately Wednesday + Thoughts on Whole 30

I really haven’t been putting much time into the blog lately, and I definitely have not done a WIAW in a bit, but I had the urge to share what I’ve been eating lately in relation to doing the Whole 30. I decided that with the blog, I am not going to force myself to blog. When I feel like it, I’ll do it! That’s what I’ve been doing. I don’t know why but the past year it’s been up and down with feeling the urge to blog and honestly I don’t want to force out stupid blog posts just to get something up. I hope you’ll stick with me! Here’s some tidbits about what I ate and my thoughts about the Whole 30 I’m participating in this month:

What I Ate Wednesday Button












{typical breakfast: kale, tomato and bacon quiche with parsnip fries and sauerkraut on the side}

Sooo…Whole 30…it’s not going as great as it was last year. I am hungry ALL THE TIME. This is normally not me. Over the past year I really have settled into routine and developed really NORMAl eating patterns as opposed to how I used to be in restricting food and calories and obsessively worrying about it. So yes, the Whole 30 last year was like a jump start for me and over the year of 2014 I really did develop much more natural, healthy eating patterns. Like, I eat when I’m hungry and stop when I’m full. Very novel idea.


{Lunch- tuna sushi rolls and salad}

However the Whole 30 (although it is very very similar to how I regularly eat) has extra rules I don’t normally follow- like not being able to eat dessert or paleo baked goods. To tell you the truth, these rules are stressing me out. Like normally I would just eat dinner to when I’m full knowing that I am going to have a little snack later. Now during the Whole 30 I’ve been like “better eat as much as possible for dinner because there’s no snack” mentality, which isn’t really healthy. I thought I had abandoned this mentality.


{Excellent Dinner- Venison steak taco salad with jalepenos, avocado, tomatoes, peppers, onions and plantains}

So to tell you the truth, I really wanted one of my husbands gluten free granola bars this weekend, so I ate one. Oh well. I am still following Whole 30 for the remainder of the month, but I’m not going to let these rules stress me out, especially when I’ve worked so hard to not have them. So if I want to eat something of plan, I am consciously making that a decision and not punishing myself for it. I highly suggest everyone do the Whole 30 strictly at least once in their lives. However, this just isn’t where I am on my journey of eating, so I’m not that strict about it. Mostly the lesson learned is- do what works for you!


{Another yummy lunch- Liver/Pork Meatballs and Sage noodles from The Paleo Kitchen<<Sooooooo Good! + a salad}

 Another thing I’ve noticed is that if I’m really going to eat enough at each meal to not snack in the afternoon, I have to eat a LOT. It’s possible but I really don’t have a ton of time to eat in the morning and shoving down that huge breakfast you saw above is difficult! Oh well, there’s no laws against snacks in my world!
















{typical snack- figs with coconut butter YUM!}

 That will be it for what I’ve been eating. Kind of random, but many delicious things. Hope your Whole 30 is going well!

How do you feel about breaking the Whole 3o rules??


Whole 30 Week 2 Meal Plan

Like many other whole food and Paleo bloggers I decided to do the Whole 30 in January. I got a late start because I was too >ahem< sick to start on New Years Day. Then I wasn’t prepared to start on the Friday after New Years because I didn’t have the right food in the house. SO I started last Saturday.

Today is Day 8! Here’s what I have planned for week 2 of my Whole 30. 


Pork Soup
*I made soup with butternut squash, Swiss chard, pork stock and bits of leftover pork. I usually make soup for lunch but it’s been annoying carrying it into school so I decided to just eat it here for breakfast.



Venison Stew (Mon-Wed)
Tuna Sushi (Thu-Fri)

I got these awesome Nori rolls at a natural food co-op I was at Saturday. Can’t wait to put them to the test!


Monday- Leftover Spaghetti Bolognese (over zucchini noodles)
A recipe from Practical Paleo

Tuesday- White pork chili from Meals Made Simple (Against All Grain)
Got this book for Christmas and haven’t made much from it, I was really looking forward to trying this recipe.

Wednesday- Leftovers!

Thursday- Country ribs with mashed parnsips/potatoes and green beans

Fri- Wing it?

Saturday- Pork Arrabiata over zucchini noodles (Also from Meals Made Simple).


A week into Whole 30 and I am feeling better, trying to get in some grass fed beef liver. It tastes gross but I am really trying to force myself to like it. I hide it in some meatballs and it’s pretty good. I picked up a large haul from my farmer the other day. #nutrientseeker


I’ve been feeling very blah and just unmotivated and I’m pretty sure the winter is getting to me. At the natural grocery store I visited this weekend I picked up some Whole 30 compliant vitamins to help with this at the advice of my naturopath. I never even thought of the vitamin D issue. I’m probably getting next to zero vitamin D right now…. Ugh, winter.



Have a great week!
Are you doing Whole 30? How are you feeling?


Getting Started with Real Food

Yep, it’s the start of the new year and everyone is going to get HEALTHY! Right? I know, it’s so cliché but I know I definitely need a detox after the holidays and I have had several people asking me where to start when it comes to getting healthier or getting started with Paleo or whole foods. I’ve found some amazing resources people have been putting out there this week because of new years and I decided to compile them all here in case you’re brand new to Paleo and looking to get started. First, some tips from me!

get started


1. Plan out your meals! I make a detailed food and meal list every week and go shopping for the foods I need. Not only does this save me money but you’ll never be wondering “what do I  make for dinner” on a random weekday and succumb to ordering out.


2. Food prep. I also take 2-4 hours every Sunday to make the lunches, breakfasts and some snacks for the week. I make the same thing for breakfast (like a casserole or quiche) and eat it for the five days. I usually make soup for lunch. I know it seems like a lot but there’s really no other way in my opinion. This is the ONLY way I am able to eat real food all week. It’s hard when you have kids or other obligations on Sundays but think it about it: it’s your health! It’s worth it! (Pick another day if Sunday doesn’t work for you.)

food prepp

3. Use the crock pot/leftovers during the week for dinner. The Crockpot is a magical tool. I put things into it at 6 am and it comes out delicious at 6 pm. This way I don’t have to spend too much time prepping dinner. I actually do enjoy cooking but it does become stressful sometimes during the week. Another trick I’ve used is to make extra of a meal then eat leftovers the next night. So that way if I’m using the crock pot for two nights then making another meal that has leftovers I’m really cutting down my hardcore “weeknight cooking time” to 1-2 nights.

yankee pot roast from Nom Nom Paleo

4. Don’t be hard on yourself if you “slip up”. The biggest problem I think with New Years resolutions is that people act like it’s an “all or nothing” deal. Like once you have one cookie you might as well give up and eat whatever (I used to be like this!!). Health is about what you do 80-90% of the time. One cookie is not going to ruin your life more than one salad is going to make you have perfect health. Just move on and make a better decision next time, no big deal!

5. Get ready to deal with naysayers. Don’t let people give you crap or make you feel like what you are doing is weird. Just be proud and always think of the reason you’re doing this to begin with. Your health. Your life and your family. People around you may make fun of what you’re doing or think it’s weird because they don’t understand it or for some reason are jealous of it. Where I live virtually no one is familiar with the type of diet I eat. I’m teased for bringing in things like sardines and chicken liver to lunch. But in my opinion it’s nobody’s business what I eat just like it’s not my business what they eat.


My favorite Paleo books help me learn about real food, get out of a food rut when I’m bored, and inspire my own recipes!

It Starts with Food: The first book I read before I even knew what Paleo was.  I am doing a Whole 30 in January and I highly recommend you get the book before you decide to do it!

Practical Paleo: Duh. You can’t do Paleo without this book. I recommend it to everyone that asks me about Paleo.

Eat the Yolks: This is more informational but if you’re really interested in the WHY of real food, it’s a must read.


My all time favorite Paleo blog is PaleOMG. Her latest post is also how to start with Paleo- go figure!

The Lil Honey Bee has a lot of great tips for prepping food on the weekends and keeping it super- simple. If you’re not a fancy recipes, tons of ingredients kind of person I highly recommend following Amy’s blog.

Mark’s Daily Apple will give you information about fitness and health, with a more scientific feel.

NomNom Paleo is another great recipe blog!

There’s also been some great slow cooker recipe round-ups floating around out there to help with your food prep!

Primal Palate just published a blog post about how to go Paleo for a month.

I listen to the Balanced Bites Podcast on ITunes. I am absolutely hooked on podcasts now. It’s like we’re going back to the radio. Anyways, this is with the same author’s of Practical Paleo and Eat the Yolks. I love those ladies!

I also listen to Jason Sieb and Sarah Fragoso’s pod cast Paleo Lifestyle and Fitness. They are gym owners and trainers that talk about not only food and fitness but more the lifestyle factors of Paleo.

 (Some of these links were affiliate links- which means I earn a small amount if you click and buy. I only recommend products I myself use and love!)

Well I think that’s a pretty comprehensive list of resources right there! It’s pretty much everything I’ve read/seen/listened to on my journey. I wish you luck if you’re just starting and remember just stick to it and don’t worry if you don’t get it right at first. You’re doing this for the right reasons!