DAY 5: HEALTHY RECIPES - MUFFINS
My daughter is the inspiration for this post. For the last couple of months, she’s been making healthy muffins every Sunday to have for breakfast before school during the week. She’s played around with a few recipes, some better than others, but this one, courtesy of ViaNutrition is a favorite in the weekly rotation. We added a healthy “frosting” to go with them too. I’ve been eating them for snacks in the afternoon - an easy grab that keeps me away from the crackers, chips and chocolate!
DOUBLE CHOCOLATE ZUCCHINI MUFFINS
- 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour (we used gluten-free oat flour)
- ¼ cup almond meal
- ¼ cup cocoa powder
- 1/3 cup coconut sugar
- 1¼ tsp baking powder
- ¾ tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp cinnamon (or 2 drops cinnamon essential oil)
- 3 small overripe bananas, mashed
- 1 heaping cup grated zucchini (don’t squeeze water out)
- 1 tbsp almond milk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ¼ cup dark chocolate chips or cacao nibs + more for topping
Preheat oven to 350F. Grease muffin tin/line with liners and set aside. Place dry ingredients in a medium mixing bowl, stirring until combined. Place bananas in a large mixing bowl and mash with a fork. Add zucchini, almond milk, and vanilla. Pour half of dry mixture into wet mixture stirring just until combined. Repeat with the rest of the dry mixture. Fold in chocolate chips. Fill sprayed muffin tin evenly with batter. Top each muffin with additional chocolate chips. Bake for about 20-22 minutes, or until set.
In a blender or food processor, mix 2 Tbsp of coconut oil, ¼ Cup fresh raspberries, 1 tsp raw honey and 1 drop lemon essential oil (optional).
DAY 4: STRESS
Anyone else relate to this picture??????
We all get stressed from time to time, but unfortunately, a lot of us feel like that most of the time.The stress response is actually beneficial when coping with serious situations (fight or flight). BUT, it’s supposed to turn off and go back to normal afterwards. When our stress levels stay elevated for long periods of time, it really takes a toll on our health - irritability, anxiety, headaches and insomnia are just the tip of the iceberg.
When we’re stressed, all systems in the body are affected. We experience increased heartbeat, elevated blood pressure, a flood of hormones, faster/shallower breathing, higher blood sugar levels for extra energy, muscle tension, a temporary pause on our reproductive system, and a boost to the immune system.
Like I said, great when it’s short-term, but imagine what goes on in our bodies when it doesn’t turn off? ?? Chronic stress is the source for so many issues: risk of stroke or heart attack, respiratory issues, type 2 diabetes, overeating, heartburn, acid reflux and other digestive issues, muscle tension, reproductive issues and a weakened immune system.
Using essential oils daily can be so effective in keeping our emotions and stress levels in check. There is tons of research showing how certain essential oils can alter our cellular communication in the brain, helping to reduce anxious feelings and promote a calming effect. These are some of my favorite “starter kit” oils and blends plus a couple of great add-ons to have on hand throughout the day. Diffuse them, make up multiple rollerballs for easy access (purse, bedroom, kitchen, etc.) or use certain ones internally.
Lavender, Balance, Frankincense, AromaTouch, Wild Orange, Serenity and Copaiba
Use equal drops for diffusers and rollerballs.
- Essential Calm: Lavender + Frankincense
- Chill: Balance + Wild Orange
- Tension: AromaTouch + Frankincense or Copaiba
- I Need A Moment: Balance + Serenity
- I Can Do This: Wild Orange + Frankincense
- Wind Down: Serenity + Copaiba
A drop of Frankincense or Copaiba under the tongue to immediately take the edge off or for use on a daily basis to help keep major mood swings as bay.
DAY 3: CLEANER AIR - REDUCING YOUR TOXIC LOAD
Environmental experts say “the average household contains about 62 toxic chemicals”??
We all want our homes to smell fresh and clean, but unfortunately air fresheners, deodorizers and candles are laden with ingredients that have been linked to asthma, cancer, reproductive disorders, hormone disruption and neurotoxicity??
Our daily exposure to these toxins can overload our bodies to point where our filtering organs can’t keep up -- recirculating them through our blood and storing the excess in our fat cells and tissues which can lead to all sorts of health issues down the road.
No one can avoid exposure to toxic chemicals altogether, but it is possible to take some simple steps to reduce it significantly.
Replacing these items with a diffuser or DIY room sprays are great alternatives. Switch out your synthetic versions for natural options by diffusing or adding 10 drops of oil to a spray bottle with distilled water for a room spray.
- Disinfecting - OnGuard, Wild Orange
- Deodorizing - Lemon
- Relaxing - Balance
- Floral - Lavender
PHTHALATES - on the list of worst toxic offenders
When you see ‘FRAGRANCE’ as an ingredient, this is usually code for hundreds of synthetic chemicals, many of which are phthalates - used to soften plastics and prolong the smell of fragrances
Long-term Impacts: reproductive issues, cancer, heart disease, chronic fatigue, depression, obesity, diabetes, delayed sexual development in children and developmental impacts in utero.