Definitions and Overriding Principles of Paleo and Healthy Eating

You see that I often write about living a Paleo lifestyle (why I started, shopping guide, beginner’s guide). My family and I try to live a healthy lifestyle. This extends to cleaning products, recycling, skin/bodycare and more. But the biggest area I write about is food. I tweet and Facebook about food a lot. Sometimes recipes from my Paleo recipe site, and sometimes general information about healthy eating. There are sooooo many schools of thought and philosophies on healthy eating. I’m not an expert. I’m not saying my way is the only way. I’ve embraced Paleo and I’ve run with it. But if you don’t want to jump into Paleo 100%, there are other ways you can improve your diet and your overall health with what you eat, and more importantly, what you do not eat.

What’s more important than whether or not you follow Paleo are the definitions and overriding principles of healthy eating in general. These Here are some terms and phrases you may see me write about…and many of these I did not know until this past year:

GMO (genetically modified organism):

A GMO is an organism whose genetic material has been altered using genetic engineering techniques. Yummy right? And there are genetically modified foods and crops. Most of the have been created so crops are resistant to pests, herbicides or environmental conditions. I don’t know about you but I don’t want to eat a science experiment, so I stay away from foods with GMOs. It’s not easy to do, however, because GMOs are in a LOT of foods. If a product is organic, it does NOT have GMOs. Also, all Trader Joe’s branded products are GMO-free.

Picking fruits and veggies from our CSA. Organic. Non-GMO. Whole foods. Gluten-free.

Gluten-free

Gluten-free = no gluten. Sounds great right? Well, just because something is gluten-free doesn’t mean it is healthy. You can find gluten-free baked goods, pizzas and processed foods which can still be bad for you. Whenever possible, stick to whole foods (see next item) and if you need a fix or a treat, make it yourself…that way you know the quality of the ingredients.

Whole foods

No, not the grocery store. Whole foods are foods that are unprocessed and unrefined. Fruits, vegetables, unpolished grains, beans, non-homogenized dairy. While I don’t necessary eat all of these listed (grains and beans are a no-no on Paleo), if you stick to this type of diet, it is inherently healthier.

Whole Foods

Yes, the store. Just because you shop at Whole Foods does not mean you are buying healthy foods. You must be a discerning customer. Whole Foods sells both organic and conventional foods, so read signs and labels. Whole Foods also sells foods that contain GMOs. And they DO NOT label all the products that have GMOs so be aware (they have committed to doing so by 2016, however in my opinion, they should not carry products containing GMOs). I do frequently shop at Whole Foods, but just beware and be educated.

Grass-fed beef

Mark’s Daily Apple wrote up a great post on the grass-fed beef and I think you should read it. Basically, I stick with organic, grass-fed beef.

Processed foods

Basically, any food not in its natural state. An apple = not processed. Twinkie = processed. That may be a drastic example but you get the point.

Organic Foods

According to wikipedia, organic foods are:

…foods that are produced using methods of organic farming – that do not involve modern synthetic inputs such as synthetic pesticides and chemical fertilizers. Organic foods are also not processed using irradiation, industrial solvents, or chemical food additives.

 We buy organic foods whenever possible. I mean, do pesticides, chemical fertilizers irradiation, solvents and additives sound healthy? Yeah, didn’t think so.

Dairy

Dairy products are food products processed from the milk of mammals. Milk, cheese, yogurt, ice cream…but NOT EGGS! Even though eggs are in the dairy section of the grocery store, they are not dairy. Eggs come from chickens.

Grains & Legumes

If you follow Paleo, you avoid grains and legumes. What you may not realize is that includes corn (grain) and peanuts (legumes). Other nuts are fine. Just not peanuts, because they are not really a nut.

Wild vs. Farm Raised Fish

I took this passage from this CNN piece:

A 2003 report from the Environmental Working Group showed that farmed salmon in the U.S. has the highest levels of PCBs, toxic man-made chemicals. And a widely publicized study in the journal Science in January 2004 suggested that farmed Atlantic salmon had higher levels of PCBs and other toxics than wild Pacific salmon.

Umm…..nuff said for me. I stay with wild seafood.

So those are some of the terms you may hear or read from me. Have any others that you are curious or confused about? Let me know!

 

WWYW: Mixed Prints

I love the idea of mixed prints, but I haven’t really pulled it off myself in real life yet.

I bought a shirt as part of the Target/Prabal Gurung collaboration and I think it’s a perfect candidate to style in a mixed prints ensemble. What do you think?

It’s a casual’ish long-sleeved t-shirt with the flower design. I wore it under a black blazer with super skinny black cigarette pants for a work meeting one day…but I feel that it has much more potential.

So, WWYW? What would you wear? I know it can be worn with bright skinnies but I’m looking to pair it with a contrasting print. Strips? Dots? Gingham?

Weigh in and let your inner stylist break free!

 

 

Spring 2013 Trends I Won’t Be Wearing

I love fashion. And I’m all for a trends. But I’m also all for understanding what I can and cannot wear. I’m petite. To say the least…4’8″. So there are some things that just don’t work on me…and there are other things I just don’t like.

Here it is, the spring 2013 trends that I WON’T be wearing!

  1. Crop Tops. Maybe it’s my age, maybe it’s that I’ve two kids via c-section. Maybe it’s because I live in Boston and spring can still be cold. I guarantee I will not be wearing any crop tops. I love this striped top in theory, but not reality.
  2. Cutouts. I mean, you can pretty much just say “ditto” to #1. And also it seems as though the cutouts on all the dresses I am seeing are just in the most inopportune places for 99% of people.
  3. Neon. I’m not morally opposed to it in any way, it’s just not flattering as a color on me. And I feel like I should be at a roller skating rave party at 3am wielding glow sticks. Right?
  4. Peplum skirts. Not all peplum. Just peplum skirts. I love a peplum jacket or top and even a dress. The peplum usually falls nice on me and gives my body a great shape. But when it’s just a skirt, it just doesn’t work right on my body. It falls too low and throws my proportions all out of whack. Maybe if I were a foot taller, but in my current state, nope.
  5. Bold bottoms. I actually love the idea of a floral or patterned pant. But I’ve tried on numerous styles, fits, cuts, brands and colors and have yet to find one that works for me. Being so short, I think the bold print just calls too much attention to my lower half, and how short it is. My top half is short too…so I need to focus on things that elongate my body. And these definitely do not. I can work a bright-colored bottom with the right top and heels, but the patterns will have to stay for the taller ladies.
  6. Wedge sneakers, chunky heels and flatforms. I love shoes. All types of shoes. But not these. You’d think a short girl might like some lift in her sneakers…but I find these just odd. The chunky heels from J. Crew look like something my 85-year-old grandmother would wear, and the flatforms? What the heck are those? They look like something Fred Flinstone would wear.

That all being said, I like the look of the cropped striped shirt with the floral bottoms. Mixed prints anyone? Not on me…but I could see it on a 19-year-old college student ;)

If you don’t agree with me, here is more info on the pieces listed above.

 

I won't be wearing these spring 2013 trends

Topshop sun dress
topshop.com

MSGM lace shirt
matchesfashion.com

J Crew j crew
net-a-porter.com

Mango skirt
$25 - mango.com

H&M floral pants
$22 - hm.com

Gee wa wa leather shoes
ashburyskies.com

Disney’s OZ THE GREAT AND POWERFUL

I cannot wait to see this movie…Disney’s OZ THE GREAT AND POWERFUL. Honestly, I never go to the movies…but this one is a must see. James Franco, Mila Kunis, Rachel Weisz, Michelle Williams & Zach Braff. I think the original movie was one of the first movies I really remember seeing as a kid…the scary monkeys and all. But I loved it. And this looks absolutely amazing. OZ THE GREAT AND POWERFUL hits theaters soon…as in March 8th soon!

Disney’s fantastical adventure “Oz The Great and Powerful,” directed by Sam Raimi, imagines the origins of L. Frank Baum’s beloved wizard character. When Oscar Diggs (James Franco), a small-time circus magician with dubious ethics, is hurled away from dusty Kansas to the vibrant Land of Oz, he thinks he’s hit the jackpot—fame and fortune are his for the taking—that is until he meets three witches, Theodora (Mila Kunis), Evanora (Rachel Weisz) and Glinda (Michelle Williams), who are not convinced he is the great wizard everyone’s been expecting. Reluctantly drawn into the epic problems facing the Land of Oz and its inhabitants, Oscar must find out who is good and who is evil before it is too late. Putting his magical arts to use through illusion, ingenuity—and even a bit of wizardry—Oscar transforms himself not only into the great wizard but into a better man as well.

“Oz The Great and Powerful” is produced by Joe Roth, with screen story by Mitchell Kapner and screenplay by Mitchell Kapner and David Lindsay-Abaire. Grant Curtis, Palak Patel, Josh Donen and Philip Steuer are serving as executive producers. “Oz The Great and Powerful” opens in U.S. theaters on March 8, 2013.

“Like” OZ THE GREAT & POWERFUL on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/ozthegreatandpowerful

“Follow” OZ THE GREAT & POWERFUL on Twitter: https://twitter.com/disneyozmovie

Visit the website: http://www.disney.com/thewizard

OZ THE GREAT AND POWERFUL lands in theaters on March 8th!

Last Minute Valentine Gift Ideas

Valentine’s Day is tomorrow and if you haven’t bought your loved ones anything yet, here are some gift ideas!

 

1. For the littles, love these Laughing Giraffe Valentine Book Sets. My kids can never have too many books.

2. And if not books, music or art activities are my favorite. Love these instruments, or just stop at your local craft store and stock up on paint, paper and brushes (washable of course!).

3. Arbonnne products for him or her. Botanically based skin and body care, vegan wellness products and gluten-free cosmetics. You can find some great gift sets for your sweetie!

4. Perfume…I’ve worn this one for over ten years now….I love it. Try it.

5. Whoever said food is the way to a man’s heart should have also said shoes and jewelry are the way to a woman’s heart.  I’m having a Valentino moment here.  Sassy, sexy heels and Sweet rainboots! (Hint hint honey, I’m a size 5 or 5 1/2)

6. When all else fails, Alex and Ani bracelets – so much to choose from, you can’t go wrong!

7. Forget flowers that die in a week, go for an herb garden! I love this one from William Sonoma.

As always, this is basically my personal “want” list and I have not been paid for these endorsements. 

The Morning Routine

From the time you wake up, how long does it take you to leave the house?

Ughh. It takes me a long time.

About two hours. And it seems even longer.

Let me set the scene first. I have two little ones. They go to “school” 3 days a week. I work but have a home office. Some days I have to go to client meetings. Some days I just have to get out of the house for human interaction.

My biggest problem is I don’t usually set an alarm. I wake up when one of my littles wakes up. If I have a meeting in Boston I need to get to, I will set my alarm for 6 and try to shower and get mostly ready before they wake up. They usually wake up about 7am.

So I feed them breakfast. We sometimes play a little bit. The oldest watches a show, or at least we have Disney Jr. on the TV…it takes her a WHILE to really wake up in the morning.

I shower, put on makeup, do my hair and get dressed. Sounds like a lot but I can do all that in 20 minutes max (as long as I don’t wash and dry my hair….hence the sock bun I’ve been sporting a lot recently.

There are days I don’t shower. Shhh…don’t tell. But I still wash my face, do makeup, etc. Actually, I tend to get more compliments on those days so maybe I shouldn’t shower more often :) Ha ha. And I ALWAYS get dressed. Meaning no gym clothes, sweats or pajamas out of the house!

I try to lay the girls clothes out the night before. I give my oldest input, maybe too much, but I usually ask her what color she wants to wear, and she responds with the color and if she wants to wear shirt/pants or a dress. The little one is too little so I still get to pick her clothes :)

I pack their lunches. My husband typically gets their lunches all ready, but I have to put the stuff in the lunch bags, and cook any hot food to put in each girls’ thermos.

I load the car. I often put the girls in the car first, the little one with a bottle and the eldest with a snack. We have a garage under our house and it’s warm and secure so don’t freak out on me. Then I load in their school bags. Then my purse, laptop bag, etc.

I often do a final check of the house to make sure the oven is off, no stove burners are on, irons are off, etc. Another final sweep to make sure kids have jackets, hats, mittens, etc. in the winter.

Then we are lucky to pull out of the garage two hours later.

And many times, I pull a u-turn and head back home for something I forgot.

And sometimes, I have to go back a second time.

Awesome.

Holy moly…I’m tired just typing all this. It’s exhausting.

What is your morning routine line? How long does it take you to get out of the house? Any tips to be more efficient?

 

WWYW: Styling My Leopard Boots

Last week I wrote a blog post about a pair of knee-high Christian Louboutin leopard boots that I adore, but I never wear. Amazing right?

WWYW? What would you wear? I wrote the post asking YOU to help me style outfits to wear with these boots. I specifically asked some of my favorite fashionista bloggers for their ideas. I was shocked that I had all the items they recommended, even the jewelry!

Cue fashion show in my bedroom.

Followed by awkward self-portrait session with my iPhone in the mirror.

DISCLAIMER: I am terrible at self-portraits. I can’t get the lighting right, my nice camera wasn’t focusing properly…but whatever. I’ll work on it :)

So here goes….

Outfit #1 Styled by Amy Tara Koch @AmyTaraKoch 

 Black wrap dress with gold necklace. 

Outfit #2 Styled by Tonya Mezrich @tonyamezrich

Little red dress, black patent belt

Outfit #3 Styled by Saucy Glossie @saucyglossie

Jeans, striped tee and a chunky necklace

Outfit #4 Styled by Mr. Kate @mrkatedotcom

 Ratty jeans, slouchy white button down shirt partially tucked in, chunky turquoise necklace, lots of bangles

Outfit #5 Styled by Charlene Chronicles @charchronicles

Black maxi dress

Outfit #6 Styled by Tonya Mezrich @tonyamezrich

Black skinnies, black fitted top, camel coat

Outfit #7 Styled by Me!

Black peplum jacket over black skinnies

What’s your favorite look with the boots? 

It’s really hard for me to select a favorite. The all black looks, whether the dresses or the top and pants are chic and classic and I’d definitely wear all of them. The red was a surprise to me….I loved it a lot more than I expected. I thought it might be too much…but it wasn’t. It was adorable. I liked the idea of the striped t-shirt but had trouble figuring out what type of jeans to pair it with. I like the look but I think on my petite frame, it wasn’t best.

What shocked me is HOW much I LOVED Mr. Kate’s styled outfit. OMG. It’s NOTHING I’d ever put together…but maybe that’s why I loved it so much!!!! So I took some extra pics!