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Garlic Chili Shrimp with Pesto Zoodles

I love a quick and healthy meal. And by quick, I mean a meal you can whip up in 10 minutes! 

This was my lunch the other day. Busy with client calls and lots of writing, I quickly got into the kitchen, perused through the fridge and my eyes landed on the pesto, the zucchini and the bag of shrimp I was defrosting.

I think it can be easy to over complicate food. 

I remember back in my 9-5 work days I would bring in my own lunch to work and everyone would always be peering over my shoulder talking about my ‘gourmet’ lunch. 

Umm… gourmet? Not really. I would just whip together leftovers, like roasted veggies and grilled chicken and apparently it looked gourmet. 

Well, considering that most people in the office were eating fast food and well… crap; my meals looked pretty fancy. They also looked vibrant! You know, real food, real colours and not beige nutrient-less junk. 

Anyhow, you can image some of the ‘health’ conversations that would get stirred up at the office. 

I mean, I was eating real food people. Ain’t nothing wrong with that!

Anyhow, I digress…

Let’s get to this incredibly tasty 10 minute meal. The smell of fresh parsley mixed with garlic and chili is so good. You’re gonna want to eat the shrimp right outta the pan (I sure did!).

Best part is, this meal is incredible for balancing out your blood sugar levels. Ain’t no insulin spikes happening here! You’ve got a bowl full of veggies (zucchini), protein from shrimp and healthy fats. No starchy carbs, just real, simple whole foods. This meal will keep your mood stable and support your energy levels. 

Also, shrimp (make sure to get wild caught) is loaded with selenium, which is an important mineral for supporting the thyroid. 

Ok, let’s get cooking…

So first, you’re gonna need to start with some spiralized zucchini noodles. This is the spiralizer I have here.  If you don’t have a spiralizer, don’t fret! You can simply use a vegetable grater and grate thin slices of zucchini or use a knife to slice it into thin strips, your call.

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If you are using a store bought pesto, make sure it’s organic or at least contains only natural ingredients. If you prefer to make your own, try my detox pesto recipe here. If you’re making it from scratch, now’s the time to whip it up before you get cooking. 

Once you’re pesto is ready to go, chop up 2 garlic cloves, a small bunch of fresh parsley (roughly 2-3 tbsp) and measure out 1 teaspoon of chili flakes. Prepare your shrimp by peeling them and leaving them aside. I used one whole bag (roughly 30 shrimp).

Heat olive oil or grass fed butter in a cast iron pan and once hot, add in shrimp, garlic, chili flake, parsley and fresh cracked black pepper. Cook for 2-3 minutes on each side until shrimp turn nice and pink. 

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Once shrimp are cooked, remove from the pan and set aside into a bowl.

To the same pan, add in zucchini noodles and pesto and cook on medium-low heat until cooked through, roughly 6-7 minutes. The time it takes to cook your noodles all depends on your preference. You might like them on the softer side or slightly harder and on the raw-er side with a bit of bite. Your call. Cook them to your desired preference. 

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Once cooked, add zoodles to a bowl, top with shrimp and sprinkle fresh parley on top. 

DONE and DONE!

This meal is finger-lickin’ good, healthy and a huge time saver when you feel strapped to get something quick and nutritious on the table. 

As much as a delicious bowl of pasta can be, I really don’t miss it. The zucchini noodles are really filling and satisfying and you can top them with you favourite sauce. 

Hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do!

Garlic Chili Shrimp with Pesto Zoodles
Serves 2
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
5 min
Total Time
10 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
5 min
Total Time
10 min
Ingredients
  1. 2 large zucchini's, spiralized
  2. 1 large bag frozen shrimp, defrosted (I used wild caught)
  3. 3 tbsp pesto
  4. 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  5. 1 tsp chili flake (or more if you like it hot)
  6. 2 tbsp fresh parsley, roughly chopped
  7. Black pepper
  8. Olive oil, for sautéing
Instructions
  1. Spiralize zucchini's and set aside (I used the 1/4 inch blade for a thicker noodle).
  2. Prepare pesto and set aside (make your own or use store bought).
  3. Defrost shrimp and remove shells.
  4. Heat a cast iron skillet over medium heat. Add olive oil. Once hot, add in shrimp, garlic, chili flake parsley and black pepper.
  5. Cook for 2-3 minutes on each side until cooked through and nicely pink. Remove from the skillet and place in a bowl.
  6. To the same skillet, add in zucchini noodles and pesto. Cook for roughly 5-7 minutes until desired texture is reached.
  7. Add noodles to a bowl and top with shrimp and fresh parsley.
  8. Eat and enjoy!
Holistic Wellness https://holisticwellness.ca/
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Coco-NO-Oat-Nut Granola

When it comes to breakfast, Granola isn’t something that’s at the top of my list.

I’m more of an eggs girl. I even eat chicken or leftover salmon for breakfast. My body really wants protein in the morning.

However, I do love granola. The crunchiness, the sweetness, the variety and blends of different nuts and seeds and superfoods together.

But let’s face it; most grocery store granola is loaded with sugar, and many contain artificial junk!

But since I’m all about hacking recipes, granola was something I just had to hack so I could enjoy it guilt free and minus the way-too-much-sugar. 

Enter my Coco-NO-Oat-Nut granola. I wanted a granola recipe minus the oats. As much as I love oats, sometimes I want something a little less carb-heavy. That’s where this granola comes in. In replace of oats, I used coconut flakes and mixed in a variety of heart healthy nuts and seeds. 

Serve this delicious granola over your next Acai Bowl or top it on Buffalo Yogurt (my favourite!), which is rich, creamy and loaded with protein and healthy fat. 

Or simply enjoy it as is. And if you got little kiddos, they’ll love it too. You can even have them take it to school for a snack, just replace any nuts with seeds to avoid allergies. 

This recipe is straight out of my Healthy Desserts eBook and it quickly become a customer favourite! If you haven’t gotten a copy yet, my eBook is currently on sale and you’ll love all the incredible gluten free, dairy free and refined sugar free recipes!

Click here to check it out! 

In the meantime, whip this delicious granola recipe up this weekend and let me know what you think in the comments below. 

Enjoy!

Coco-NO-Oat-Nut Granola
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
40 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
40 min
Ingredients
  1. 3 cups coconut flakes, unsweetened
  2. 1 cup pecans, roughly chopped
  3. ½ cup pumpkin seeds
  4. ½ cup almonds, roughly chopped
  5. 2 tablespoons chia seeds
  6. 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  7. 5-6 tablespoons butter or coconut oil, melted
  8. 3 tablespoons maple syrup or brown rice syrup
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 250F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl, then spread evenly on a tray. (You could use 2 trays. I used one large one).
  3. Bake for 20-30 minutes, until golden and desired crispness is reached. Be sure to remove from the oven half way and gently stir.
Notes
  1. *I like my granola on the crispier side. I left my granola in the oven for a good 30 minutes and about 5-7 minutes before removing, turned the temperature up to 275F to help speed up the cooking time. Just be sure to keep your eye on it if you turn the heat up, as the coconut can burn rather quickly.
Holistic Wellness https://holisticwellness.ca/
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Simple Steps to Healing Estrogen Dominance

If you’ve been dealing with a range of hormonal issues and have been trying to get to the bottom of your hormonal health, I’m sure somewhere along the lines in your research you’ve come across the term – Estrogen Dominance. 

What exactly is estrogen dominance? Basically, it’s having too much estrogen in relation to other hormones. You can find out through hormonal lab work what your hormone levels are, but, in my experience and working with hundreds of women, the best way to know if you have estrogen dominance is through symptoms.

Let’s talk about those symptoms because there are lots of them! And with the over exposure to plastics, chemicals, environmental toxins, food toxins and mismanagement of stress, there’s a good chance many women (and men) are dealing with estrogen dominance. 

Symptoms of Estrogen Dominance Include:

  • irregular periods
  • excess weight on hips and abdomen
  • pms
  • pms related migraines
  • heavy periods
  • uterine fibroids
  • swollen lymph nodes
  • ovarian cysts
  • breast lumps
  • breast tenderness
  • hormonal acne
  • endometriosis
  • abnormal paps
  • breast cancer 
  • uterine cancer
  • PCOS

Ok, so, there’s a lot. And just to be clear, just because you might be dealing with some pms, cramping and bloating around the time of your period doesn’t mean your estrogen is completely high, off the charts and you need medical intervention and your life and hormones are doomed. 

Take a breather. 

As a woman who suffered with PMS and estrogen dominance myself, (and sometimes still get some of these symptoms), it’s common and can be managed through diet and lifestyle. 

Over the years as I’ve become more in tune with my body and track my cycle, I’ve become more aware of certain symptoms and why they show up. For example, if I’ve had a busy stressful month, late nights, indulged a little in too much in sugar, wasn’t consistent with my supplements and didn’t drink enough water or eat enough leafy greens; pms symptoms appear. I’ll get some cramping, bloating and will get a swollen lymph node under my left armpit. 

On the flip side, when I’m working out regularly (i.e. sweating!), drinking my water, supporting detoxification through dry brushing, supplementation and food and managing my stress effectively, my period comes with ease and no swollen lymph node. Amazing how that works! 

I often hear from my weight loss clients how amazing and regular their periods are just from following their meal plans and my supplement protocols. Although we are addressing weight, a bonus side benefit is more balanced hormones, easy breezy cycles and effectively eliminating estrogen! Yup, the right plan can do all of that. 

Did you know that back in 1960 1 in 20 women developed breast cancer and today, 1 in 9 women develop breast cancer!? That’s an alarming rate (and may I add, millions and millions of dollars are being spent on breast cancer awareness, yet these numbers seem to suggest that we aren’t getting any closer to true healing). 

That’s why it’s all about prevention. I know prevention isn’t a sexy word, but ladies, it’s what we have control over and we better start being more proactive about our health and our diets. 

I’m sure you’re wondering… what actually causes estrogen dominance? Well, a few things – prolonged stress, pharmaceuticals, the pill, emotional or physical trauma, heavy exercise, diet, environmental toxins, soy, plastics, tap water, alcohol; just to name a few. Truth is, these aren’t actual causes of estrogen dominance, but they contribute to estrogen dominance. There’s a difference. Just because you have a few glasses of wine a week doesn’t all of a sudden mean you have estrogen dominance. However, combine that with the use of the pill, stress, a poor diet, exposure to environment toxins, eating lots of conventional animal products – well then, now there’s a potential for estrogen dominance and hormonal imbalance altogether. 

So what can we do now to deal with estrogen dominance and bring our hormones into balance? Here are some very easy-to-implement tips that you can start doing today! 

  1. Eat More Fiber – at least 45g a day! Yes, that’s a lot but in order to effectively eliminate estrogen, you need fiber to bind to the excess estrogen in your gut to help flush it out. Great sources include – leafy greens, broccoli, cauliflower , brussel sprouts, flax, chia, artichokes, figs, apples, pears, beans and legumes, turnips, squash, peas, berries. 
  2. Brush Your Skin – I’m talking about dry skin brushing. Read my full article here on how to effectively dry skin brush and why it’s beneficial
  3. Drink More Water – this will be essential especially if you’re increasing your fiber intake. Water is essential for detoxification  and is necessary for flushing out toxins from your system. Plus, it helps to support digestion and gut health. Aim for at least 2-3L a day and I suggest drinking spring water. FYI – tap water contains your neighbours birth control pills! Gross.
  4. Ditch the Plastic – plastic water bottles, food storage containers, all of it. Get yourself a pretty glass bottle fill it up with lots of water and drink your toxins away. Plastic contains BPA (even BPA-free plastic is no good in my books!) which mimics estrogen in our body. Basically, the chemicals in plastic increase the estrogen in our body leading to estrogen dominance.
  5. Ditch Your Toxic Store-Brand Makeup – which is also full of estrogen mimicking compounds. Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) and Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES), Mineral oil, Phthalates, Synthetic Fragrances, Imidazolidinyl Urea And DMDM Hydantoin, FD and C Color Pigments, Isopropyl Alcohol, just to name a few, all wreak havoc on your hormones. 
  6. Use Safe Household Cleaning Products – another culprit of environmental toxins, cleaning products contain many questionable ingredients. Click here for my homemade all natural multi purpose cleaner that is free from toxins and won’t cause hormonal disturbances. 
  7. Rethink the Pill – the birth control pill contains a combination of synthetic (I repeat, synthetic!) estrogen and progesterone. Need I say more? Try non-hormonal contraceptives like the copper IUD or barrier methods such as condoms or the cervical cap. You can read more here on the issues with the pill and why it’s destroying your health and hormones. 
  8. Buy Local & Organic – as much as possible! Grass fed and pasture raised meats/animal products are the way to go (if you are a meat eater). Conventional meat and animal products contain pesticides, herbicides, antibiotics and hormones. Avoid it and your hormones will thank you. 
  9. Manage Stress – ok, easier said than done, but seriously, freaking out over spilled coffee, being stuck in traffic and being pissed off because your netflixs is down ain’t doing your hormones any good. You have to find time to chill the eff out! A hot bath, a yoga class, a walk, deep breathing, more sleep, it is ALL important. Stress is a cause of estrogen dominance. 
  10. SupplementDIM, Turmeric and I3C are incredible for supporting estrogen dominance, detoxing the liver and supporting overall hormonal health. You could also take Estrosmartwhich contains a combination of all these ingredients. 

Don’t be overwhelmed by this list. My suggestion is that you start with ONE of the above tips and go from there. And may I point out, just popping a supplement everyday, although helpful, isn’t going to be the solution. In a society where we all want a quick fix, it really does take effort and commitment to heal our bodies and hormones. But, you’re worth it, so make the effort to do all 10 suggestions, even if it takes you 3 months, 6 months or 12 months. Just do it!

As you know, I offer as comprehensive weight loss program and specialize in women’s hormonal health. Whether you need help losing losing weight, or addressing your hormones, or both, email me and we can set up a complimentary consult call to discuss your health history and goals. My mission is to get more women off the pill, reverse the rates of breast cancer, heal PCOS, and help women feel more vibrant and damn-freaking-tastic. Basically, I’m here to help women unleash their superpowers so they can live a healthier, happier, more purposeful life. Email me at – samantha@holisticwellness.ca or fill out my application form here. 

I hope you found this post helpful. If you have friends, sisters and mothers that could benefit from this information, please share it with them. I can’t reduce the rates of breast cancer and hormone related cancers alone. I need your help in doing that 🙂

If you have comments or questions, please post them below. 

Also, I’d love to hear from you about what blogs/articles you’d be interested in having me write. Let me know! Send me an email or comment below. 

*A quick note on hormone testing – I think it’s great and can definitely serve a purpose, however, most saliva or blood hormone tests cannot tell you what is going on at the receptor site. Also, hormones fluctuate quite dramatically throughout the day and month, so it can be difficult to get an accurate read. I think that if you’ve exhausted all your options when it comes to healing your hormones, this would then be a good time to test. In the meantime, having a practitioner (such as myself) assess your diet, lifestyle and symptoms will give you a clear understanding of what imbalances you are dealing with. 

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Chocolate Hazelnut Protein Power Bowl

Your breakfast needs a pick me up!

One of the biggest complaints I hear from my clients is that they don’t know what to eat for breakfast. Enter this power bowl. It’s not just any power bowl. It’s a friggin chocolate hazelnut bowl and I totally approve of you having it for breakfast! 

My breakfast varys often. From oats, to eggs (which can be made poached, fried or into a delicious veggie filled omelet) to leftovers, I eat quite the variety of things in the a.m.

And yes, by leftovers I mean I’ve eaten my leftover poached salmon with avocado and a side of greens for breakfast. It’s delicious, healthy and full of protein to fuel my body for a busy day. You should try it sometime!

I often tell my clients that they need to get over the idea that breakfast has to come in the form of a bagel, a donut, a box of cereal or any other type of breakfast-y type food. Breakfast is just another meal of the day, so don’t limit your choices. 

This power bowl has definitely gotten many of my clients up and out of bed in the morning. Even their kids enjoy it (which is a huge win!).

I mean, what kid (or adult) is going to pass up chocolate in the morning? I use cacao in this power bowl and if you haven’t gotten on the cacao-powder bandwagon, then I suggest you join. I use cacao in a lot of my smoothies and baking recipes, because it contains no artificial sugars, junk, or crap that you find in a typical cocoa powder. 

Cacao is a superfood and it’s rich in vitamin C, magnesium and lends a perfect chocolatey decadence to just about anything.

Have you tried my Black Bean Brownies yet? They contain a delicious amount of cacao and are perfectly gooey, rich in protein and packed with fiber. Click here to get that recipe. 

Oh! and ladies! This power bowl is perfect for those sugar craving PMS days where all you want is chocolate and you’ll rip someones heads off until you get your fix. You know what I’m talking about! The thing is, when you’re craving chocolate around your period, what your body is actually telling you is that it needs magnesium.

Magnesium is a very important mineral that helps to ease cramps and release muscle tension. It’s basically like the perfect PMS mineral! So take some, or eat cacao. 

So get out that blender, whip up this delicious chocolatey goodness, bask in your all day soaring energy and tame the PMS monster. 

Chocolate Hazelnut Protein Power Bowl
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Ingredients
  1. 1 frozen banana
  2. ¼ cup hazelnuts, soaked 30 minutes
  3. 3 tbsp hemp protein (I used Progressive Organic Hemp)
  4. 2 tbsp raw cacao powder
  5. 1 scoop of your favourite chocolate protein powder (I love Progressive Harmonized Chocolate in this recipe)
  6. ¾ cup coconut milk
  7. 1 tsp cinnamon
  8. ice (optional)
  9. 1/4 avocado (optional and may be needed for additional thickness and consistency)
Toppings
  1. Banana
  2. Strawberries
  3. Cacao nibs
  4. Shredded coconut
  5. Hemp seeds
  6. Chia seeds
  7. Goji berries
  8. Hazelnuts
  9. Sesame Seeds
  10. Pumpkins Seeds
Instructions
  1. Place all ingredients (minus the toppings) into a blender and blend until well combined. Pour into a bowl and top with your favourite ingredients. Topping with hemp seeds, chia seeds and other superfoods will give this bowl a super antioxidant kick and supply you with a ton of plant based protein and healthy fats.
Holistic Wellness https://holisticwellness.ca/
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Why The Birth Control Pill Ruined My Health and is Probably Ruining Yours!

I remember at the young age of 17 being in my doctors office explaining to him that my periods were irregular, I had headaches around my cycle, I was bloated and all around irritated. 

I remember saying “Doc, I think I should go on the birth control pill.”

He replied “absolutely! You can start today!” as he handed me a blue and pink pack of pills. 

I remember specifically asking to go on the pill because it’s all I had ever heard about at school. All the other girls were doing it and had easy breezy cycles, so why wouldn’t I do it too!?

BIG mistake!

Going on the pill at the time seemed like the best option. Regular periods, not having to worry about pregnancy, taking the pill during my actual period so I could go swimming up at the cottage. I mean, skipped periods…awesome!

Actually, NOT awesome!

The birth control pill suppresses ovulation. If you ain’t ovulating, your throwing off your entire hormonal system. Regular ovulation means you are fertile, hormones are in check and your cells and endocrine system are happy!

You see, having imbalanced hormones, headaches and issues with your cycle is a beautiful sign that something is up with your body! Something is ‘off’ and needs your attention. By taking the birth control pill, you completely mask these symptoms. You end up shutting down how your endocrine (hormone) system functions and create deeper issues, not just with your hormones, but with digestion, brain function, fertility and immunity. 

I remember getting hit hard with the flu throughout my teenage years on numerous occasions. When I got the flu, it got me good! I was a write off for a good week. 

I suffered with terrible digestion as a teenager, had thin-brittle hair, brain fog and pretty intense sugar cravings. 

Speaking of sugar cravings, my blood sugar imbalances and high carb diet was the biggest contributor to my imbalanced menstrual cycle. 

Yup, it’s true, sugar, bagels, cereals, grains, alcohol, potatoes and poor quality meat (loaded with antibiotics and hormones) contribute to heavy and irregular periods, bloating, gas, headaches, irritability, fatigue, brain fog, digestive upsets and insulin imbalance! When your insulin is high, guess what? You gain weight! Oh joy!

So…thinking of ditching the pill? We should talk! Email me at samanthagladish@gmail.com and let me know if you want help getting off the pill and gaining back your hormonal health. 

Otherwise, read on for 3 reasons why the birth control pill is ruining your health…

1. Digestion – taking synthetic hormones can actually effect the lining in your gut. This can lead to a host of problems, such as Crohn’s, leaky gut issues, allergies and a ton of digestive upsets. Feeling bloated, like your 6 months pregnant and can’t get rid of that gut? You could blame the pill. 

2. Immunity – the pill, as with all pharmaceutical drugs and antibiotics also damage the gut lining, but they also impact your good bacteria in your gut. You see, your immune system ‘lives’ in your gut! You need healthy, thriving bacteria in order to have a strong immune system. This is why probiotics are so important for over all health. 

3. Mineral Deficiencies – the pill robs you of minerals. This all goes back to gut health. Your gut actually absorbs and assimilates minerals for you, such as B 12, zinc and magnesium. Without these, you could have serious issues with fertility and on top of that, you’re probably feeling exhausted, depleted, having thinning hair, cramping, and dull skin. This is all due to lacking important minerals. So can you just take a mineral complex and some B vitamins and call it a day? Well, I do encourage these supplements if you are taking the pill, but at the same time, if you continue to take the pill while supplementing with these products, your still not getting the optimal dose. Saying your going to cut back on smoking is still smoking! Ditch the pill (or the cigarettes) for optimal health and hormones. 

You can gain back hormonal health, vitality, increase your changes of conceiving and lose weight. You can actually achieve so much more than this!!

If your concerned about your diet, your health and your hormones, email me at samanthagladish@gmail.com and let’s talk about it!

You can reclaim your health, your libido, your fertility and vitality in a few short weeks. 

Trust me, it’s possible! 

Cheers to your AMAZING health!

Your Badass Wellness Coach, 
Samantha xoxo

 

 

 

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My Favourite Morning Smoothie

I’m pretty obsessed with my green smoothies in the morning. Over the years as I was constantly revamping my diet and trying new super foods, I gravitated towards making a green smoothie because it was 1. easy to thrown all my ingredients into a blender and drink it and 2. it’s just damn tasty and it makes me feel like a rock star!

Don’t you want to feel like a rock start? 

I’m always asked what kind of blender and juicer I use…

Blender – Vitamix (which I’ve had now for almost 10 years!)
Juicer – Omega (which I got almost 2 years ago and love)

But I love my vitamix more only because it’s less hassle to clean 🙂

But… juicing is better, right? Or is blending?

Another question I get asked often. 

With blending you preserve all the fiber and juicing you extract all the fiber. That’s why its a juice. The pulp is separated and you’re left with a pure, clean juice. Obviously you want to juice veggies to obtain the most nutrients content that will supercharge your cells upon drinking. Due to the fiber being removed, the absorbability of a juice is much faster. 

As for blending, the pulp is kept in tact and you drink it. Nothing wrong with that! The pulp/fiber will help slow the release of sugar into your bloodstream and is more satiating. 

So..which one is better? I say do both! Personally, I include both smoothies and juices in my diet. If I’m heading out the door to a meeting or off for a super busy day, I’m probably not going to juice. It’s not as filling and my tummy will be wanting to eat soon after. In this case, I’d rather make a smoothie and load it with fruits, veggies, protein, fiber and healthy fats. This is filling!

But what if you combine the two?? Yup! Combine them!

That’s what I’ve started to do and I’m officially obsessed with this blend. It’s so fuelling, energizing, invigorating, healthy, nutritious and yummy!

Due to my juicer being low speed, it prevents oxidation and the juice can actually be stored for up to 72 hours. So what I like to do is make a big batch of fresh pressed juice, use some right away, and then store the rest in the fridge overnight to use again tomorrow. 

Bonus is that I don’t have to juice everyday, but I get to enjoy the benefits.

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So here’s what I’ve been juicing, which I use as a base for my smoothie:

Juice (makes 4-5 cups)

  • 2 large cucumbers
  • 5 celery stalks
  • 2 carrots
  • 1 inch piece of ginger root
  • 1 lemon

I add 1-2 cups of this to my vitamix blender and add in:

  • Half a banana
  • Handful of mixed greens (spinach, kale, etc)
  • 2 tsp spirulina powder
  • 1 tbsp hemp seeds
  • 2 tsp chia seeds
  • 1 tbsp almond butter
  • 1/4 avocado (optional, but adds extra creaminess)
  • 1 cup spring water (optional, depending on your preference of thickness)

Blend together and enjoy!

Your energizing Juice-Smoothie! It’s loaded with silica, potassium, omega 3’s, protein, vitamin B12, vitamin C, fiber, beta-carotene and vitamin E. It doesn’t get any better than that. Plus, it tastes SO good!

Happy Juicing and Blending!

P.S. If you’re looking for more delicious and energizing smoothie recipes, My Qualitarian Cookbook is full of them! From juices to smoothies and healing elixirs, you’ll find a ton of nourishing and healthy recipes. Check it out HERE. 

Samantha xoxo 

 

 

 

 

 

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Modern Day Shepard’s Pie – Turkey and Cauliflower Mash

Nothing beats a warming and comforting meal like Shepard’s Pie. My mom makes a delicious Shepard’s pie and I remember having leftover for days. It’s one of my fathers favourite meals that my mom makes 🙂

I like baking casseroles mainly because of the leftover factor. Reheating a delicious meal for lunch the next day served up with a side salad gets a thumbs up in my books! Casseroles are great if you have kids or a large family, as they can easily be frozen and heated up during a late or busy weeknight.

This recipe is more of a “modern-day” Shepard’s pie. It still contains delicious and flavourful ground meat, but I’ve opted for a cauliflower mash instead of potatoes. Trust me, if you’re a potato lover, you wouldn’t even know the difference.

Cauliflower contains a powerful compound called sulforaphane. This a sulfur compound that has been shown to kill cancer stem cells, thereby slowing tumor growth. How amazing is that?! Sulforaphane can also improve blood pressure and support the detoxification process of the liver and kidneys. Bonus!

So let’s get to this cancer-protective recipe and get our cook on!

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Turkey & Cauliflower Shepard’s Pie
Serves 6-8

Ingredients:

1 large head cauliflower
1 ¼ cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
1 ½ lbs ground turkey
1 red onion, diced
1 garlic cloves, minced
½ green pepper, diced
½ red pepper, diced
1 tsp cumin
2 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp chili flakes
1 tsp smoked hot paprika
1 400ml can diced tomatoes
2 tsp balsamic vinegar

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400. Cut cauliflower into small florets. Spread onto a baking sheet with parchment paper. Drizzle with olive oil and season with sea salt and pepper. Roast for 30 minutes until soft. Add to food processor with ¼ cup broth and combine until mashed. Set aside.
  2. In a large skillet, cook turkey over medium-high heat. Break up with a wooden spoon and cook until no longer pink, approximately 8-10 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
  3. In the same skillet, add onions, garlic and peppers. Cook for 3 minutes stirring frequently. Add in spices/herbs and cook for 1 minute. Add in turkey, with remaining 1-cup stock, tomatoes and vinegar. Cook for 5-6 minutes until thickened slightly. Transfer to a baking dish and smooth out with a spatula.
  4. Spoon cauliflower mixture puree over turkey. Gently smooth out. Cover with foil and bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes. Remove foil and bake for an additional 5-10 minutes, until top is slightly golden.

 

* If you’d like to freeze this dish to serve at a later time in the week, allow turkey mixture to cool in pan before adding to baking dish. Once cooled, add to dish with cauliflower mash, cover with plastic wrap/foil and freeze. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 400 and bake for 45 minutes covered. Removed foil and bake an additional 15 minutes until golden brown and cooked through.

 

Serve this with a simple side salad and you have yourself an amazing, nutrient dense meal that is oh-so-satisfying!

 

Happy Cooking!

P.S. Looking for more great healthy recipes to cook up!? I’ve got you covered! Check out The Qualitarian Life Cookbook that is full of 40+ gluten free recipes that are incredibly delicious and super healthy! Get your copy HERE!

To Your Health & Abundance,
Samantha xo

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Chocolate Chip & Cinnamon Banana Bread – Paleo Style

Chocolate. Cinnamon. Bananas. What a combo!

I love baking, as you know, and it’s been a while since I whipped up a banana bread. Let alone, a gluten free, grain free, dairy free banana bread, with NO added sugar!

This bread is DA BOMB! It’s so full of flavour and free of many allergens.

I got the idea from Make Ahead Paleo to include a cinnamon-y topping. I’ve never done this in the past and couldn’t resist testing it out! This delicious “crust” added the perfect sweetness. I highly suggest you test it out! I guess you could say there is some added sugar, since it’s included in the topping, but you can feel free to omit this.

So let’s get baking! Hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do 🙂Image 3

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Paleo Chocolate Cinnamon Banana Bread
Makes 1 LoafIngredients:

DRY:
1 ½ cups almond flour
1/3 cup coconut flour
1/3 cup arrowroot starch
2 tbsp ground flaxseed
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground vanilla bean
½ tsp sea salt

WET:
3 large ripe bananas
4 eggs
1/3 cup hemp milk (almond or coconut work well too)

EXTRAS:
1 cup chocolate chips (I use Enjoy Life brand)
½ cup walnuts (optional- I didn’t use any)

TOPPING:
1 tbsp coconut sugar
¾ tsp cinnamon
1 tbsp almond flour

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 F. In a small bowl combine all DRY ingredients. In a large bowl combine all WET ingredients using a hand mixer. Mix until bananas are well combined and mixture is fluffy. Add DRY ingredients into WET and stir until fully incorporated. Stir in EXTRAS. I used chocolate chips. Grease a loaf pan with coconut oil and pour in batter.

In a small bowl combine TOPPING ingredients and sprinkle evenly on top of loaf. Bake for 55-60 minutes or until center is set and a toothpick comes out clean. Remove from loaf pan and let cool for 10 minutes before slicing.

Serve with grass fed butter or your favorite nut butter. YUM!

Enjoy xo

To your AMAZING Health and Abundance,

Samantha xoxo

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Carrot Cake Energy Bites

Nothing beats a treat that can be whipped up in 10 minutes!

I love carrot cake and my mom makes an incredible one! It’s a family favourite. She’s made it so frequently over the years she can make it with her eyes closed!

But…we all know what happens if we eat too much cake… sugar crashes and belly aches.

So how about a carrot cake treat that contains NO added sugar and a healthy dose of hormone balancing fats? Plus, you don’t even need to cook it.

These energy bites are great pre or post workout as they contain a healthy dose of nutrients to give your body the perfect fuel and necessary recovery.

Here’s why these treats stack up in healthy promoting goodness:

  • Coconut oil – a medium chain triglyceride that is used as an energy source in the body and helps to burn fat!
  • Chia seeds – heart healthy fats, plant based protein and bowel regulating fibre… what more could you ask for from such a tiny seed? Chia seeds are amazing for relieving constipation and supporting the health of the gastrointestinal system.
  • Almond butter – a creamy and delicious addition to these bites, almond butter is loaded with protein, belly slimming fats and contains a healthy dose of vitamin E
  • Carrots – the super star ingredient! Carrots improve vision due to being rich in beta-carotene, plus they promote healthy glowing skin.
  • Oats – I use wheat free oats of course. Loaded with fibre which helps to balance out blood sugar levels.

Now let’s get cooking! Well…un-cooking since these bites are raw 🙂

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Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup carrots, grated (approx. 2 carrots)
  • 1/2 cup wheat free rolled oats
  • 2 dates, soaked for 10 minutes to soften
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 heaping tbsp raw almond butter
  • 2 tbsp shredded coconut
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 drops vanilla stevia, optional
  • 1/4 cup walnuts, roughly chopped

Directions:

  • Add all ingredients into a food processor, except for walnuts. Pulse on low until well combined and ingredients stick together. Remove from food processor and place ‘batter’ into a bowl. Add in walnuts and use your hands to combine. It will be sticky! Roll into 1-2 inch sized balls and store in the fridge for approximately 30 minutes to help set.
  • Eat and Enjoy 🙂

 

To Your Good Health & Abundance,
Samantha xoxo

 

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