Nourished Metabolism Book Review

I recently had the fortune to receive a copy of the Nourished Metabolism. I have been seeing it on all the blogs I like to haunt read. Nourished Metabolism is written by Elizabeth Walling, creator of the blog: The Nourished Life. The site is fabulous, easy to read and great information. I’m a big fan. The book was a straightforward, no nonsense quick read. I loved Walling’s voice and her sensible advice. Her vocabulary really resonated with me: Balance and Nourishment. Ms. Walling discusses a nourished vs sTrEsSeD metabolism. Good information.

It really spoke to me about the dangers of obsession, restriction, stress…. I’ve been doing this whole “diet” thing for a lot of years now, always trying to stay abreast of what is the healthiest.. and its amazing how far I have come. In my late teens/early 20’s I did the Slimfast Diet, Atkins diet, vegan diet (although there was just more than health to my coming to veganism). Boy do I sound fickle? Or what?? But I’m not going to stop my pursuit of what works for me and my family. We’ll find it.

Click for original image

And finally I am reading what I really needed to hear, read, see… balance.. 

I really enjoyed her discussion of “busting the diet myth”. A lot of “AHA” moments.

So, no, I’m not going to tell you what you want to hear. I’m not going to make
promises about melting fat away or finally wearing that tiny bikini lurking in
the back of your closet. If you’re reading this book, then you may be
interested in losing some weight, but right now I want to focus on a subject

that’s often left to the wayside when weight loss is on the mind: your health

That right there, is a statement I can trust. She is not trying to “sell” me anything. There wasn’t even any product links. There is plenty information about biofeedback, learning about your metabolism, superfoods, digestion, exercise, handling stress, and getting good sleep.

I really enjoyed her closing chapter, her final thoughts:

Keep Perspective
Improving your health doesn’t happen overnight, but I can attest to it being a
rewarding journey. Remember that eating and living well takes practice, just
like learning to swim or mastering smart phone technology (I still don’t know
what some of those icons do!). It’s something that comes with time and
experience, and that’s part of the fun. You’ll always be learning more about
yourself and your body, and every day is another chance to put that
knowledge to good use.

Wonderful read, I highly recommend checking it out. You can get a copy here.

OHHH I also wanted to note that Ms. Walling has a small excerpt on Carrageenan. I posted earlier on this pervasive ingredient. 

Carrageenan has frequently been shown in studies to
cause ulcers and cancer in animals. It is actually used in animal studies
to induce ulcerative colitis because it is so effective in causing digestive
Carrageenan should be avoided as much as possible, especially if you
tend to have digestive problems. But carrageenan is incredibly
pervasive in the modern food supply. It’s in a wide variety of
commercial beverages (like whipping cream) and many packaged
foods. It’s even commonly found in seemingly “natural” foods like sour
cream, cottage cheese, non-dairy milks (like almond and coconut milk),
and ice cream.
Check your ingredients carefully or make these items at home from
scratch to keep carrageenan out of your diet

Oh AND this may be tacky but I’m shamelessly promoting a brand I love. Sometimes a girl needs something pretty and I really love Julep’s nail products, icky chemical free. I love LOVE getting a surprise box (and good price) in the mail. Click pic below… pweety pwease.

Please check out that link and you get your first box for FREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE (think Adam Sandler voice from Bedtime Stories). You only pay S&H, 3.99 I think. 

Stir-Fried Broccoli Slaw

First off, I need to apologize for my photography skills. They aren’t exactly up to par and I’m using my iphone to take pics but I’m trying.😉 Second, Connor is officially my food model.. although getting him to wear clothes is something I need to work on. Without further ado,



I like to think that I’m so organized with Pinterest and all, but in reality, I look in the fridge and just throw something together. My home-made mayo epic-ally failed. FYI: NEVER add gelatin to runny mayo. What the heck was I thinking?



Look in fridge, grab randomly, toss in pan, add fat. Good to go. Hehehe ok here it is

  • Chop some sweet potato and shallot (or garlic and onion), warm in pan with extra virgin coconut oil and some sea salt
  • Add in broccoli slaw (broccoli, carrots, purple cabbage). I cheated and bought it shredded. Oh so easy peasy.
  • Shred some roasted chicken. I also cheated on this and bought an already ready chicken and just shredded from leftovers last night. 
  • Add a generous dab of Kerrygold butter when nearing your desired done-ness. I didn’t want it mushy but cooked enough that Connor could eat it. The broccoli slaw tends to be a real jaw work out raw. 

-Omit the chicken/butter and you have a healthy tasty vegan meal. It made tons. This lil dish is our lunch, Oliver’s dinner at work served with a generous salad and probably our breakfast tomorrow served in scrambled eggs. Yum. 


KeVita Giveaway Winner and my luscious fatty green smoothie

Click for original image

                                                                 Congrats Kelli! You scored a KeVita coupon. Email me at: with your address and I’ll get it mailed on out. Can’t wait to hear about which flavor your chose. 







Next up, my luscious fatty green smoothie:

This was an indulgently delicious and SATISFYING breakfast to help me fuel up for the day. For so long, I have believed the hype on butter being bad (something that good couldn’t be good for you, am I right?) But since incorporating lots of healthy fat (grass-fed butter, ghee, and coconut oil) I have felt butter, better than ever!

Here is some info on the benefits of butter:

Why Butter is Better

  • Vitamins …

    Butter is a rich source of easily absorbed vitamin A, needed for a wide range of functions, from maintaining good vision to keeping the endocrine system in top shape.

    Butter also contains all the other fat-soluble vitamins (D, E and K2), which are often lacking in the modern industrial diet.

  • Minerals …

    Butter is rich in important trace minerals, including manganese, chromium, zinc, copper and selenium (a powerful antioxidant). Butter provides more selenium per gram than wheat germ or herring. Butter is also an excellent source of iodine.

  • Fatty Acids …

    Butter provides appreciable amounts of short- and medium-chain fatty acids, which support immune function, boost metabolism and have anti-microbial properties; that is, they fight against pathogenic microorganisms in the intestinal tract.

    Butter also provides the perfect balance of omega-3 and omega-6 fats. Arachidonic acid in butter is important for brain function, skin health and prostaglandin balance.

  • Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA) … 

    When butter comes from cows eating green grass, it contains high levels of conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), a compound that gives excellent protection against cancer and also helps your body build muscle rather than store fat.

  • Glycospingolipids …

    These are a special category of fatty acids that protect against gastrointestinal infections, especially in the very young and the elderly. Children given reduced-fat milks have higher rates of diarrhea than those who drink whole milk.

  • Cholesterol …

    Despite all of the misinformation you may have heard, cholesterol is needed to maintain intestinal health and for brain and nervous system development in the young.

  • Wulzen Factor … 

    A hormone-like substance that prevents arthritis and joint stiffness, ensuring that calcium in your body is put into your bones rather than your joints and other tissues. The Wulzen factor is present only in raw butter and cream; it is destroyed by pasteurization.

  • Source:
  • More information:

Now for the recipe (sorry no pic I drank it up!)

  • 1 raw egg
  • 1/4c greek probiotic yogurt
  • 1/2 tbsp extra virgin coconut oil
  • 1/2 tbsp grassfed butter (Like Kerrygold)
  • 1 tbsp coconut butter (Marantha)- Trust me, THIS ADDS depth to the smoothie
  • 1/4 cup almond milk or more depending on desired consistency of smoothie
  • As many handfuls of spinach as you like
  • Few drops of stevia to sweeten. I added chocolate stevia. Yum

Failed Mayo

What do I do on a Friday night? I hastily try to make some home made mayo. So I barely skimmed ingredients on various websites and decided I didn’t need to do anymore research. Also, I kinda stink at measuring stuff, I just can’t be bothered to measure so I throw things together based on taste= big mistake with mayo.

I roughly threw together 3 eggs, lemon juice, a small amount of cultured sour cream ( I thought, “what the heck?”), apple cider vinegar, sea salt, and extra virgin olive oil. It turned out thin liquid.. hmmm that wasn’t going to work because I was going to make a broccoli slaw. Ok so back to Google.

You need to first let the ingredients reach room temperature… OOPS. Next time I’d like to follow the actual directions and make this:

How can you go wrong with Macadamia oil? Need to get a bottle, STAT.

I really dislike to waste things so I took my messed up experiment and added gelatin. LOL. It def thickened up and doesn’t taste half bad! Time to make broccoli slaw.

Happy Friday the 13th.

Uh oh, I decided I deserved a beer today……

Carrageenan and Gellan Gum

So for about 2 weeks now I have been seeing posts about Carrageenan being “bad” and I didn’t read them because I knew it was an ingredient in my almond and coconut milks and I love them so. I felt, “Well I’m trying to be healthy and I don’t want to be told they are not good for us.” But how irresponsible is that? At times, researching healthy items is overwhelming and I’m constantly refining and fine tuning what we intake.

In comes good ole Facebook to the rescue, keeping me abreast of up to date information. I saw this lovely post by The Nourished Life about the #1 Ingredient to Avoid is….. (drum roll please)………… GUILT (stressing about food)!!!!! From her awesome website: 

Stressing About Food: It’s No Way to Live

Don’t get me wrong: there’s nothing wrong with trying to eat healthy and live healthy. But it’s not hard to cross the line from living healthfully to agonizing over every bite you take.

  • Does figuring out what to eat for lunch trigger stress and anxiety?
  • Do you try to make a healthy choice and then feel ashamed of it later because part of your meal didn’t line up with some health guru’s recommendations?
  • Are you constantly wondering which guru is right?

What if all this anxiety and agony is causing more health problems than whatever food you may (or may not) be eating?

I really appreciate the honest, down to earth approach this article takes. I can totally relate. And we all know how stress can affect our lives.

The Mayo Clinic indicates that:

Common effects of stress

Indeed, stress symptoms can affect your body, your thoughts and feelings, and your behavior. Being able to recognize common stress symptoms can give you a jump on managing them. Stress that’s left unchecked can contribute to health problems, such as high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity and diabetes.

Well with this in mind let’s actually get into the meat of the title of this post: Carrageenan vs. Gellan Gum.

Ok So I opened up my fridge and here are the brands I have:

So what the heck is Carrageenan? Dr. Weil states:

Carrageenan is a common food additive that is extracted from a red seaweed, Chondrus crispus, which is popularly known as Irish moss. Carrageenan, which has no nutritional value, has been used as a thickener and emulsifier to improve the texture of ice cream, yogurt, cottage cheese, soy milk and other processed foods.  

Well that doesn’t sound so bad! And I want to be completely hippie crunchy granola and make my own almond and coconut milk but I’m just not there yet… I love the convenience of buying my milks at the store…

However, Dr. Weil goes on to point out that:

When I first wrote about carrageenan on this site 10 years ago, I reported that some animal studies had linked degraded forms of it (the type not used in food) to ulcerations and cancers of the gastrointestinal tract. But around that time, a prominent researcher in the field, Joanne K. Tobacman, M.D., now associate professor of clinical medicine at the University of Illinois College of Medicine, conducted studies linking undegraded carrageenan – the type that is widely used in foods – with malignancies and other stomach problems. (Degraded and undegraded carrageenan differ by molecular weight with undegraded carrageenan having the higher weight.)  

Over the years Dr. Tobacman has published 18 peer-reviewed studies that address the biological effects of carrageenan and is convinced that it is harmful to human health. In April 2012, she addressed the National Organic Standards Board on this issue and urged reconsideration of the use of carrageenan in organic foods.

In her presentation, Dr. Tobacman said that her research has shown that exposure to carrageenan causes inflammation and that when we consume processed foods containing it, we ingest enough to cause inflammation in our bodies. She explained that all forms of carrageenan are capable of causing inflammation. This is bad news. We know that chronic inflammation is a root cause of many serious diseases including heart disease, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases, and cancer.

Dr. Tobacman also told the board that in the past, drug investigators actually used carrageenan to cause inflammation in tissues in order to test the anti-inflammatory properties of new drugs. And she reported further that when laboratory mice are exposed to low concentrations of carrageenan for 18 days, they develop “profound” glucose intolerance and impaired insulin action, both of which can lead to diabetes.

She maintains that both types of carrageenan are harmful and notes that “degraded carrageenan inevitably arises from higher molecular weight (food grade) carrageenan.” Research suggests that acid digestion, heating, bacterial action and mechanical processing can all accelerate degradation of food-grade carrageenan. 

All told, I recommend avoiding regular consumption of foods containing carrageenan. This is especially important advice for persons with inflammatory bowel disease.

Well crap. That sounds crappy. But I’m not stressing! Just gonna ditch them and find something else. So what the Hay is Gellan Gum?

Wikipedia says:

Gellan gum is a water-soluble polysaccharide produced by Pseudomonas elodea, a bacterium

As a food additive, gellan gum is used as a thickeneremulsifier, and stabilizer. It has E number E418. It was an integral part of the now defunct Orbitz soft drink. It is used as the gelling agent, as an alternative to gelatin, in the manufacture of vegan varieties “gummi” candies.

It is used in soy milks to keep the soy protein suspended in the milk.[3]

Well the only scholarly article I found was: that basically sums that:

The data indicate that the ingestion of gellan gum at a high level for 23 days caused no adverse dietary or physiological effects in any of the volunteers. In particular, the enzymatic and other indicators of adverse toxicological effects remained unchanged.

So here is how I feel:


SO I wonder if anyone else has any takes on this issue? Leave me a comment, let me know.

Next post I will be reviewing The Nourished Metabolism by Elizabeth Walling. Have a super fantastic awesomely rad day.

Today’s food experiments…

Today was a particularly hard day, as we received news back from my Dad’s doc that he is indeed diagnosed with Usual Interstitial Pneumonia (UIP, which is a progressive lung disease) and I have spent the vast part of the day researching like crazy for a good healing protocol. I’m most undoubtedly an optimistic person so I was convinced I could throw together a great plan of attack, but what I kept running across in the articles was less than positive. I then proceeded to throw myself into some very vigorous housecleaning to help calm my mind and refocus myself. So I didn’t find anything great about UIP? Well, I can surely help my dad ease into a healthier eating plan and exercise routine. That I can do! And he can do! (maybe with a bit of drill sergeant yelling).

Let’s proceed to the eats department:

Up first is a Connor approved smoothie:


And for lunch we enjoyed this:




Today I have also enjoyed:

  • Dessert smoothie: 1 cup grassfed full fat milk, 1 dark chocolate (88% cocoa), few frozen blueberries, maca powder, MSM powder, raw maple almond butter, ev coco oil, gelatin, spinach. Not bad, but not great. Our baby bullet is dying on us so my drink was pretty chunky. 
  • 2 lightly scrambled eggs with horseradish mustard, ghee, and a tiny drizzle of full fat coco milk with a huge heaping side of spinach
  • Green tea 
  • Cucumber/lemon water
  • 33 minutes of FItness Blender No Burpee Cardio HIIT
  • 1 hour of intense vacuuming, oven cleaning, re-organized closets and general following after Connor to pick up his trail of destruction

And I end with:


Oh PS: Enter for your chance to win a KeVita coupon (yum yum) at


KeVita Review and giveaway

Oh how I love KeVita. They make the perfect refreshing drink. The taste is refreshing , delicious, and satisfying. Let’s start with who they are: (Keep reading for the giveaway at the end of the blog post)

From their website

What is KeVita?

KeVita® Sparkling Probiotic Drink is delicious vitality in every sip. At the heart of KeVita is its proprietary culture with four strains of live probiotics. Created with optimum health in mind, KeVita is handcrafted in its own facility in Southern California. Enjoy a variety of low calorie flavors including Coconut, Mango Coconut and Pomegranate. KeVita is certified organic, non-dairy, non-GMO, gluten free and vegan.

Refresh yourself daily with KeVita. Enjoy delicious vitality and love in every sip!

– See more at:


Also Kevita is USDA certified organic, low calorie, NON-GMO (woohoo), gluten free, and vegan!

KeVita has an impressive list of flavors, the only sad part is most of the stores I go to, only have 1-2 flavors. 

  • Coconut
  • Lemon Ginger
  • Strawberry Acai Coconut
  • Mango Coconut
  • Pomegranate Coconut
  • Pomegranate
  • Pomegranate Black Tea
  • Living Greens
  • NEW: Mojita: Lime Mint Coconut
  • NEW: Daily Cleanse: Lemon Cayenne

Let’s start with the Lemon Ginger:

Hands down, my favorite combination. It’s light and fizzy and perfect for re-hydrating.  It’s not just the great taste that draws me to this product, the ingredient list is quite impressive. I think KeVita is perfect for someone who hasn’t really gotten into drinking Kombucha or finds that Kombucha is too overwhelming. 

The ingredient list boasts: Reverse Osmosis Water, Organic KeVita Probiotic Culture, Organic Cane syrup, organic Apple Cider Vinegar, Organic cold pressed lemon juice and ginger whole plant extracts, organic fig concentrate, purple carrot juice color.

Pretty impressive to me! Its a super pick me up. 

I also tried the Mango Coconut:

This flavor definitely has more punch, fruity and tropical. My BF Oliver said this was his favorite but I guess I’m more of the traditional flavor girl, can’t beat lemon and ginger! I could see serving this flavor as a punch at a party! OOOO! Just had a thought… a KeVita party. LOL. Yeah I’m a dork like that. 

Here is the awesome ingredient list: Reverse osmosis water, organic KeVita probiotic culture, organic coconut water, organic mango puree, organic apple cider vinegar, organic natural mango flavor, organic natural coconut flavor, organic stevia, organic fruit and vegetable color

Now for the giveaway! Enter below for your chance to score a coupon for a free drink (although tiny print says you are responsible for sales tax which is roughly 25-32cents) PRETTY FREAKING good in my book!


OK! Leave me a comment with the flavor you would like to try. Also like me on FB or follow me on Twitter and let me know in separate comments that you are/did. I will randomly pick a winner on 9/17/13 and announce the winner. Good luck. 


Have a super awesome day.