coffee

Guest Post by Registered Dietitian, Nutrition Consultant, & Certified Personal Trainer Alix Turoff (yay!)

Are y’all sensing a trend here?

I am THRILLED so many talented, educated, fantastic ladies are guest blogging on BEC lately. I hope you are all learning and enjoying as much as I am!

Check out this fun ‘what I eat in a day‘ post by my girl Alix Turoff who has SO MANY letters behind her name it’s incredible. Alix is a registered dietitian, a nutrition consultant, and a certified personal trainer (um, hello she is also my new bestie but doesn’t know it yet). What a resource!

More specific deets about AT:

Alix Turoff is a Registered Dietitian and NASM Certified Personal Trainer. She has a Master’s in Clinical Nutrition from New York University. She lives with her husband and dog, Oliver and believes in a balanced approach when it comes to nutrition and fitness. She doesn’t follow rules and encourages her clients to do what works for them. She runs her private practice completely virtually and maintains her blog where she posts her healthy recipes and nutrition tips!

Enjoy her inspiring photos, super informative notes, and be sure to check out her beautiful website here!

xx,

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6 AM: I usually wake up around 6-6:30 AM. My husband wakes up at that time to go to work and because I work from home, I find that it really helps me to keep this as a routine for myself because it’s easy to lose structure when you work from home.

After I brush my teeth and wash my face, I head to the kitchen and fill up a mason jar with 16 fl oz of ice water with half of a fresh lemon. I then put on a pot of coffee (if I’m drinking hot coffee that day, otherwise I always have cold brew in the fridge) and grab my ice roller from the freezer and head to my vanity.

I find that routines work really well for me and I like to build them i to my day. By starting with 16 fl oz of water first thing in the morning, I find it really sets the tone for the day and it helps me stay on track with my water intake. I will also take my pills and vitamins at this time (in addition to my prescribed medications, I take a Probiotic and Collagen supplement). The collagen supplement is fairly new and it’s something I’m experimenting with. If I don’t see a change after about 2 months, I’ll ditch it.

So I’ll put in my contacts and slather some a vitamin C serum on my face. Then I’ll take my ice roller and roll my face for 3 minutes or so to wake myself up and also stimulate collagen.

620 AM: I’ll usually take my dog out if my husband hasn’t and then I’ll pour myself some coffee. I ALWAYS start my day with coffee. It’s non-negotiable for me. I love the taste and smell of coffee and enjoy the routine of it.

 

7-8 AM: Most days I’ll exercise during this time. I don’t usually eat before I exercise unless I’m going to be exercising later in the day. I find that eating before exercise bothers my stomach so I wait until after!

830 AM: I get in breakfast routines where I’ll eat the same breakfast for a few weeks in a row during the week and change it up on the weekends. Once I get sick of that, I’ll change it up again.

Right now I’ve been keeping it really simple and doing ~6 oz Siggi’s Vanilla yogurt with 1/3 cup bran buds, 1 tbsp chia seed and some fresh berries. Sometimes I’ll swap out the yogurt for cottage cheese. Other go-to breakfast are egg white omelets with GG crackers, a high fiber English Muffin with Peanut Butter and Banana or with mashed avocado and Trader Joe’s everything bagel seasoning.

Between breakfast and lunch I aim to get in another 16 fl oz of water with lemon.

 

1230 PM: By 12:30-1 PM I’m usually ready for lunch. I tend to eat every 3-4 hours so.

Lunch is usually either a salad with protein (usually chicken), some kind of lettuce wrap (like homemade tuna salad in romaine lettuce cups), 4 GG Pizzas (4 GG Crackers + ½ cup Rao’s Tomato basil Sauce + ½ cup 1% Cottage Cheese) and 1 cup Amy’s vegetable soup or a few other variations.

 

 

2 PM: I’ll usually have another cup of coffee around this time. The caffeine doesn’t affect me too much so it’s never really an issue for me. I’ll also make sure to get in another 16 fl oz of water with lemon

4 PM: This is usually when I’m ready for an afternoon snack. If I’m out and about, I’ll throw Nugo Fiber D’lish bar in my bag. Otherwise I might have some popcorn with a string cheese, fresh fruit with peanut butter or if I didn’t have GG pizzas at lunch, I might make them in the afternoon! I also really like to do smoothies with protein or collagen.

 

7 PM: During the week, my husband and I usually eat dinner around 7 PM. I probably have wine ~3 nights per week. Dinner is usually my highest carb meal so I’ll usually incorporate either some rice, chickpea pasta, tortillas, or sweet potato. This just works for me so I go with it. I’m all about flexibility and doing what feels right for you.

One of my favorite meals to make is chicken lettuce cups with Trader Joe’s chicken fried rice!

I’m also usually working on my last 16 fl oz of water with dinner and after. That way I get my 64 fl oz covered and if I’m craving more water, I’ll have it!

 

830 PM: 90% of the time I like to have something sweet after dinner. I wait until I digest my dinner so I can see how I feel. I listen to my body and if I’m craving something sweet, it’s usually dark chocolate with sea salt or if I want something salty, I’ll usually go with popcorn!

 

Talking Shop…

coffee shop

This isn’t the “cleanest” post…you’ve been warned.

But I sort of have this obsession with coffee shops lately.  I am SO curious (nosy) and intrigued by what people order at their local coffee shop.  I asked some of my friends what they order and got some really delicious sounding responses. Alaya Sexton who owns my gym with her husband Chad isn’t a huge coffee drinker but when she does indulge at Joe Beans in Lynchburg she likes hers with a lot of cream and adds coconut flavoring.  I tried this recently and IT IS SO GOOD.  Chad on the other hand LOVES coffee and just takes his with a splash of cream.

Tiffany is a fancy at home coffee drinker.  She uses organic beans from Fresh Market and grinds them fresh every morning (#goals). She takes hers with a little organic whole milk or unsweetened almond or coconut milk.  Mary makes a tasty coffee drink at home on mornings where she needs something to fill her up for a while.  This is her concoction: Trager Brothers Coffee thrown into the Vitamix with a teaspoon of honey, a tablespoon of organic cold pressed coconut oil, full fat coconut milk, a teaspoon of cinnamon and a pinch of turmeric!  They put me to shame!

Let me also say I have never been a huge Starbucks fan. Ever. BUT. The one down the street from my house has a drive through. I have a newborn. Enough said.  I also go to Joe Beans!  The staff is super friendly and helpful when I want to try something new (which is often).

I look forward to my coffee shop outing a few mornings a week. This emerging addiction has required some research however. Like with anything that I am consuming on a regular basis, I want it to be somewhat decent for me and know what’s in it.

At Starbucks I get a grande (or “medium” as my husband would say), iced (this may change with the weather), decaf (ughhhhh), soy (bear with me), single (I like it milky), latte. Why soy you ask? It’s the only organic product they have and it’s easier on me and my EBF son than dairy. It is sweetened which is not my preference so I never add syrup or sugar. I get decaf for now while I am nursing just in case but that will change one day.

Now, to eat! Hold the phone. The new Caramelized Banana and Dark Chocolate Oatmeal is unbelievable. AND not without the calories, crap, and sugar either. BUT it’s my treat once or twice a month. It is so good. Other mornings I grab a Kind bar at checkout or get the Classic Oatmeal.

My friend Jen taught me a trick. You can get your oatmeal prepared with steamed milk as opposed to hot water! AMAZING. My recommendation would be to get the Classic Oatmeal with steamed soy milk and add half the dried fruit (it is sweetened), all the nuts, NONE of the brown sugar, and a heavy dash of cinnamon (I learned the half fruit tip from Tiffany).

At Joe Beans I get a decaf soy milk latte with coconut flavoring (thanks to Alaya!).  They also have Umpqua Oats that make for a good quick on the go breakfast.

You may not care what I get BUT I am dying to know what and how you order!  Any coffee shop tips you can share with me?

xo,

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An Alternative to Coffee (ONLY IF YOU WANT ONE!)

I promise I am not going to try to take your coffee away, ever.  (Especially YOU Tiffany Tatom!)

But…if you’re looking for an alternative for whatever reason, I have one for you.  The last time I had coffee was in Puerto Rico the first week of May.  I had two cups of Puerto Rican (delicious) coffee but got SUPER SICK afterwards.  I am not sure if it was because the coffee I make at home is very weak and this was very strong or what…but I had to stay in my room, unmoving for almost half of the day.  I felt anxious, nauseous, and shaky.  My heart rate was up and I was altogether a mess.  Great way to spend a day in paradise!

So that scared me enough to seek an alternative.  I love tea of all kinds: iced tea, Big T NYC, hot tea, hot chocolate.  But none of those were really quenching my thirst for coffee.  I didn’t drink coffee for the caffeine like most (ALL!), I really just love the process of making my coffee in the mornings, adding a lot of my favorite cream and sugar, sitting in my office, and getting to work with a cup of something warm and tasty.

That something for me now is Dandy Blend.  After reading the reviews I was sold and ordered a HUGE bag on Amazon.  (Order it here).  It really is a large bag and I keep it in the freezer to maintain freshness.

 

dandy blend

 

What the heck is it?

Straight from their super informative website Dandy Blend claims:

  • It tastes remarkably like a rich, full-bodied cup of coffee, no brewing, dissolves instantly in hot or cold liquid.
  • It is caffeine free, and has no acidity or bitterness.  It is the only herbal coffee substitute in the US that features both the health benefits of dandelion root and the rich, full-bodied flavor, smoothness and texture of real coffee. Many say that, because it lacks bitterness and acidity, it actually tastes better than coffee.
  • It is made of water-soluble extracts of roasted roots of dandelion, chicory and beets, and the grains of barley and rye. Nothing else is added. While we make no claims for Dandy Blend other than that it is a delicious herbal beverage with the taste, body, and texture of coffee, the ingredients – dandelion, chicory and beet roots, and barley and rye grains – are all health-promoting foods respected throughout the world.
  • It contains no gluten. Gluten, which is comprised of proteins that are not water-soluble, is left behind in the grounds to be composted during the extracting process, leaving Dandy Blend gluten-free.
  • The sweetness some perceive in Dandy Blend is primarily from the fructose that occurs naturally in the roots of dandelion and chicory. Many people require no additional sweeteners.
  • It contains over 50 trace minerals in each cup, most of which the body uses to help synthesize compounds needed in metabolism.
  • There are no headaches or other withdrawal symptoms when switching from coffee to Dandy Blend. It is like switching from one brand of coffee to another. Most people generally can’t tell that they aren’t drinking coffee.
  • On top of all this, Dandy Blend costs as little as 7 cents a cup – less, on a per cup basis, than coffee, or instant coffee alternatives that do not contain dandelion.

Y’all, all I know is I combine equal parts of unsweetened coconut milk with water (about a cup each) and almost bring to a boil. Then I add coconut sugar and a little bit of coconut creamer.  Voila.  It is super tasty and sort of a combo of coffee and hot chocolate.  SO GOOD!  I SWEAR!

I don’t make this every morning but have a feeling I will make it a lot more as the fall and winter temperatures drop. So, again only if you WANT an alternative, give Dandy Blend a whirl and let me know what you think.

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Photo Credit: http://www.dandyblend.com


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