Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Take a moment to enjoy...

This time of year can be so busy and hectic. Shopping, celebrating....visiting. It is a great time of year to reconnect with old friends, celebrate new, thank people who have helped throughout the year. Take a moment to appreciate everything you have...your health, family and friends, co-workers and associates. Be sure to share with those less fortunate. Take some time to relax...whatever that means to you!

My gift to you is the most fantastic chocolate fantasy you could possibly enjoy. And surprise, surprise - it's healthy too! Enjoy this special indulgence...and don't feel guilty.

- 1 cup extra virgin coconut oil
- ¼ cup organic raw almond butter
- ¼ cup almond meal
- 4 Tbsp agave nectar
- ¼ cup organic unsweetened coconut
- ¼ cup hemp seed protein
- ½ tsp liquid Stevia or 3 tsp powdered Stevia (6 packets)
- 1 Tbsp organic vanilla
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- ¾ cup raw chocolate cacao powder
- 1/3 cup goji berries

1. Spray an ice cube tray with nonstick spray and set aside or use mini cupcake tins and papers.
2. Melt coconut oil under hot water or spoon into saucepan and melt over low flame. When coconut oil turns to a liquid, pour oil into medium bowl.
3. Slowly whisk in almond butter, cinnamon, Stevia, and agave nectar one at a time.
4. Next, whisk in vanilla.
5. Then slowly stir in cacao (or carob), almond meal, coconut, and hemp seed protein one at a time, sprinkling evenly as you go.
6. Batter should run off of spoon. Spoon into ice cube tray, or cup cake papers and chill in freezer for 15 minutes.
7. Sprinkle goji berries of the top.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Secrets to a better nights sleep

The other day I noticed a woman doing laps on our block with a baby in a stroller . I checked back later and she seemed to be doing this for almost an hour. While this might seem odd to some of you, getting a baby out in the fresh air for an hour a day used to be one of the rules of parenting. The babies sleep better and seem to thrive better for the fresh air.

But it's not just babies that need their fresh air - adults need it too. Getting out in the fresh air increases our intake of oxygen, which is essential for energy production, and also allows our skin to manufacture vitamin D in the presence of sunlight. Plus if you go for a brisk walk this improves your circulation and burns calories. A walk can be also be very relaxing, particularly if you have a nice park or river path nearby.

Sadly I'm sure most of us don't have time for a daily 60 minute stroll outdoors, but it's worth making the effort to get outdoors on the weekend especially now the clocks have gone back so we won't be seeing much sunlight. You might not feel like venturing out as the days get colder but wrap up warm and stick a reward at the end (take a long walk to brunch or a favorite cafe) and you'll find it more enjoyable!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Happy Chanukkah!

Chanukah is such a fun holiday to celebrate...especially with kid(s) in the picture. This eight-day celebration includes lighting the menorah, playing dreidel, and eating potato latkes. The latkes, traditionally fried are done so in the tradition of the Maccabees finding oil that was supposed to burn out after one day but instead lasted for eight.

While potato latkes are common fare on Chanukah, They can be enjoyed any time of year. Here is my healthy twist. Baked, not fried, making each one less than 45 calories and 0g fat. I have also swapped out half of the Yukon gold potatoes for sweet potatoes lowering the carb count and increasing the fiber. Plus, sweet potatoes are rich in powerful antioxidants like Vitamin A and C. You can also add greek yogurt as the base to decrease fat and increase protein.

- 1/2-lb. Yukon gold potato
- 1/2-lb. sweet potato
- optional: zuccini or squash
- 1 medium, vidalia onion
- 1 large egg

- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- Pinch cayenne
- 2 tbsp whole wheat flour


1. Preheat oven to 425F.

2. Cut up and Grate potatoes and onion and place in bowl.

3. Remove excess moisture by pressing down firmly on potato mixture with paper towel or squeezing out excess liquid

4. Stir egg into potato mixture.

5. Mix together baking powder, salt, cayenne, and flour.

6. Stir spices into potato mixture.

7. Drop latke mixture in 3tbsp measurements onto baking sheet.

8. Bake for 15-20 minutes, then turn the pancakes over, and bake for an additional 10 minutes.

Latkes should be deep gold on both sides when done.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Everything you need to know about Flu Season 2010

Everything you need to know about Flu Season 2010

Last year's Swine Flu had everyone on HIGH ALERT. So this year we want to be fully prepared for what's to come. To set your mind at ease, I consulted with Society Hill Pediatrics about the particulars of the upcoming cold and flu season.

Q. I understand that the H1N1 and Seasonal Flu vaccines have been combined this year, but can you explain exactly who needs the shot and if a booster is required?
A. Coming from a very atypical flu season last year, the ground rules for flu shot administration this season are a bit confusing. I understand the CDC is recommending everyone receive flu vaccine this year—as opposed to past years, when the CDC focused on high-risk individuals. Would you mind clarifying?

• Anyone 9 years and over requires just one dose of flu vaccine – whether given as Flumist or a standard shot
• Any child age 6 months – 8 years who has had no H1N1 vaccine in the past requires two doses of Flu vaccine this year
• Any child age 6 months-8 years with a normal flu vaccine history (i.e., two doses in any one year, and one dose in subsequent years) and with any H1N1 (one OR two doses last year) requires only one dose of vaccine this year.
• Any child age 6 months-8 years with H1N1 vaccine last year, but either no prior seasonal flu vaccine or incomplete seasonal flu (i.e., no season with two shots given a month apart) will require two doses this year.

Q. What if a baby turns 6 months of age after the October/November time frame when most people are vaccinated? If a baby turns six months in January, should she be vaccinated then?
A. Absolutely. That is the height of the flu season.

Q. Last year we got the message—loud and clear—that washing hands is critical. What about hand sanitizers? Are they as effective? I know how dangerous alcohol can be around children - What about the natural, non-alcohol-based sanitizers?
A. Alcohol-based sanitizers (for adults), natural sanitizers (for babies and tots), cleansing towelettes and plain old soap and water are all effective, as long as they're applied for at least 30 seconds, with friction.

Q. What else can we do for our little ones to keep this year's strains at bay?
A. Keep them active. If it's too cold for outdoor recreation, play inside with small groups of healthy children. But be mindful that large, indoor play venues are loaded with germs and the potential for contagion is high—so stay away from ball pits and big play zones. Ventilate their rooms. Crack the windows whenever you can (weather permitting) to keep fresh air circulating. Clean surfaces hit by sneezes or used tissues with bleach-based wipes so as not to pass germs to other family members. Wash toys frequently. During and after illnesses, put plush toys in the wash and clean hard toys with wipes to reduce re-infection. Discard toothbrushes after illness.

Q. What about the stomach flu? Do probiotics do anything to prevent/manage stomach flu?
A. There are small studies that show that daily probiotics in children with diarrhea may cut symptoms by a day. There are larger studies in Europe looking at preschoolers who took probiotics daily versus those who didn't. The tots who did had a significant reduction in colds and upper respiratory infections, so there certainly is a rationale for regular daily use through cold and flu season.

Q. If all else fails and our children still get sick - How should we treat their discomfort? What about the recent recalls on Tylenol and Motrin?
A. Generics are just fine in this era of recalls and shortages. Triaminic has just come out with a new branded acetaminophen; it is no different or better than generics or Tylenol, but its presence adds to the pool of available options. Other over-the-counter cold remedies haven’t been proven to be effective in young children, so if your child is especially uncomfortable, speak to your health care provider for specific guidance.

Q. What about Natural remedies?
A. If you don’t have access to acetaminophen or ibuprofen, then old fashioned methods of cooling a fever can be used—ingesting lots of cold liquids, dressing in light layers, taking frequent baths/showers, or placing lukewarm compresses on the body with moist towels. Under no circumstances should rubbing alcohol be put on a child (absorption can be significant and lead to potential toxicity). For colds, there is nothing better than fluids and humidity. Drink at least three times more fluids than normal, and promote looser secretions by taking showers, instilling saline into little noses clogged with thick boogies, and put a humidifier in your child’s room if the heat is on or your air is dry.

Friday, November 5, 2010

healthy. green. mom.: Boost your immune system naturally...

healthy. green. mom.: Boost your immune system naturally...: "The weather is getting colder. It's rainy. Colds and flu and rampant. How can you boost your immune system naturally? This soup had been..."

Boost your immune system naturally...

The weather is getting colder. It's rainy. Colds and flu and rampant. How can you boost your immune system naturally? This soup had been a favorite natural remedy for years. I warn you - it is delicious and highly addictive!

Pumpkin Kale Soup

- 1 pound organic canned pumpkin (13-ounces)
- 4 cloves garlic, chopped
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 cups low sodium chicken or vegetable stock
- 3 cups raw kale
- 2 medium sweet potatoes, cubed (i keep the skin on for added nutrients)
- 1 medium white onion, chopped
- 2 large carrots, chopped
- 1 large red pepper, chopped
- 2 celery, chopped
- ¾ cup fresh or frozen corn
- 1 cup edamame
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- ½ teaspoon nutmeg

1. Pour the olive oil into a large saucepan and sauté the onion and garlic until tender.
2. Add the chicken or vegetable stock, potatoes, kale, carrots, celery, pepper, edamame and corn. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 25-30 minutes.
3. Stir in the pumpkin, salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Cook 5-10 minutes longer.

*Sometimes I will add the kale with the pumpkin to keep it from cooking as long.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

healthy. green. mom.: How could being proactive change your life?

healthy. green. mom.: How could being proactive change your life?: "I apologize for the delay between posts - life got in the way. But I am up early this morning with renewed vigor. I have been making some p..."

How could being proactive change your life?

I apologize for the delay between posts - life got in the way. But I am up early this morning with renewed vigor. I have been making some positive (proactive) changes to my daily routine and I had been trying to find the perfect time to write and in doing so the day got in the way. I am committed to giving you my early morning hour - to share ideas, advice, recipes and love! I have been enjoying all the positive feedback I have received from friends and readers and look forward to keeping this a place to share the latest and greatest on health, nutrition, environment and family. Keep the feedback coming!

So what have I been proactive about?

Finding time to take care of myself. When my son Skyler was born almost 2 1/2 yrs ago I was on my way to the gym. I took such good care of myself: studying nutrition, daily workouts, pampering. And then...poof! What happened took over. All the sudden I was taking care of my son and husband and everything else seemed to take the back burner. Not in a negative way. But I stopped making a priority the things that let me unwind and feel good. Most importantly my workouts. I found it hard to find places I could workout with Skyler and a serious lack of childcare at fitness facilities in the City. Now - Skyler and I take a yoga class on Monday's (kids can participate or play on the side - thank you, Iva!), mid week Skyler has started preschool and the first thing I do is head to the gym when I drop him off. It gets my workout in and out of the way! Even if I feel like I have a ton of other tings to do I can always fit in 30 minutes. I have also set up a solution at home. Skyler and I have yoga mats to stretch on and some equipment to fit in a quick stretch, yoga class or core strength exercises.

Taking care of yourself goes beyond just exercise. Taking care of your appearance can also make you feel your best. For me that means manicures/pedicures. I have arranged a mommies and manicures event at my favorite salon (POSH in Northern Liberties) to get together with friends and get pampered. To often we don't take the time to do these things, but a little bit goes a long way. This way not only do we have great company, but also a few extra hands to take care of the kids. BE CAREFUL - I have picked this salon very carefully. They are impeccable about cleanliness and it is a new open space. There is no toxic smell and good ventilation. This point also comes to getting hair, waxing, whatever you like to do to make you feel your best!

How can you be your best if you do not take care of you?

Other things I have been proactive about - getting Skyler into preschool! He started his first few days last week and is doing great! He loves being surrounded by children his age and is thriving.

Working! I have partnered with the Nouveau Image and we are developing a new niche within the business to do more family friendly marketing and will be developing a lot of new events in Philadelphia and surrounding areas. Keep posted!

How can being proactive change your life?

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Being proactive!

I had the pleasure of taking part in an amazing seminar this past Sunday put on by Park Avenue Wellness's Roberta Mittman and Amanda Goldfarb from Cake and Carrots - a mother and daughter team that are forming a very special niche and taking over the nutrition, health and wellness world. The first annual "Love Your Body Day" included 20 fabulous guests ranging from health and nutrition to fashion and styling. What an incredible concept and a fun, informative day of inspiring and refreshing guests. I am sure I will share much of what I took away from the day but one of the most important things I would like to touch upon today is being PROACTIVE.

Proactive is tending to initiate change rather than reacting to an event

Think about it! What do you need to be proactive about it order live your life to its fullest?

Stay tuned tomorrow...lots more to come!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

The smell of pumpkin is in the air

With Halloween right around the corner many of us are visiting the orchards to pick pumpkins and apples. There are so many fantastic recipes to experiment with this time of year. My husband and I love taking our son, Skyler to the Orchard. We have started doing this more often as other fruits and vegetables are in season. It is the best way we have found to have the benefits of gardening without the outdoor space to accommodate it. Nothing like the crisp air, and running around to find the best specimen too!

When removing your pumpkin seeds from your pumpkin roast them on a cookie sheet for 20-25 minutes. Your temperature should be set at 160-170. By roasting them at a low temperature it helps preserve the good oils found in the seeds.

Pumpkin Soup

1 large onion, minced
2 cups defatted chicken stock or vegetable broth
1 ½ cups pureed cooked pumpkin
½ tsp. dried oregano
¼ tsp. hot pepper sauce
¼ cup toasted pumpkin seeds

In a two quart saucepan, cook the onions in 2 tablespoons of the stock or broth until limp.

Add the remaining stock, pumpkin, oregano and hot pepper sauce. Simmer for 15 minutes.

Serve sprinkled with pumpkin seeds.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Exploring the Farmer's Markets

I feel very fortunate to have several great Farmer's Markets within close proximity to where we live. I visit the markets several times a week and look forward to get fresh seasonal produce. I make an effort to try new things and experiment with new recipes. With the weather changing it is a great time to try new soups and stews too. Last night I made a fresh chicken and vegetable soup. I came home with an over abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables. Several different types of apples, mango, pear, fresh mint and cilantro, leeks, eggplant, squash, Jerusalem artichokes, fennel, spinach, collard greens,, what to make?!

Here is a french recipe that sounds delicious. I will report back with my new techniques.

Potato, Celery Root, and Jerusalem Artichoke Purée

1/2 lemon
2 pounds russet potatoes, peeled and cut into quarters
12 ounces (375 grams) Jerusalem artichokes, peeled
1 medium celery root (celeriac), peeled, cut in half, then cut into thick slices
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


1. Fill a large bowl with water, squeeze the half lemon into it, and then add the lemon half as well, Peel the potatoes and the Jerusalem artichokes, placing them directly in the acidulated water.

2. Bring plain water to a boil in the bottom of a vegetable steamer. Place the celery root in the top and cook until it begins to turn tender, 10 minutes. Add the potatoes and cook until the celery root is nearly tender through, 10 minutes. Then add the Jerusalem artichokes and cook until they are tender through, about 10 minutes.

3. Transfer the vegetables to a large bowl, of to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the dough blade, and blend to a consistent but slightly chunky purée (do not puré them in a food processor or they will turn to glue). Add the butter and continue mixing until it is incorporated. Season to taste with salt and pepper, and serve piping hot.

Friday, October 15, 2010

A Letter to my Daughter - With Permission from Vicky Bell

I had to share this post I read recently - very touching and important to share!

Letter to my daughter (in the wake of senseless tragedy)
Hello my girl,
I wanted to say hi and tell you how much I miss you and that I hope your classes are going well and that you are having fun too.
But I also have to have a mommy moment - bear with me here. I won't take long, and I won't be saying anything I haven't already said in one form or another, but it is important.

You may or may not have heard about the NJ college student who killed himself last week because his room-mate had posted videotape of him having sex with another guy. A terrible, senseless tragedy.

My mommy job requires that I remind you of two essential things:
Nothing ruins your life forever. NOTHING.
Nothing ruins your life forever. NOTHING.

If that young man had only waited a couple of weeks nobody would have cared- he'd have gotten past it. People have short memories- life would have gotten better, much better. His parents and friends? They loved him prior to the tape- they would have loved him afterward too. A few awkward moments and then life goes on.

But when you are young you don't know that even the awkward moments are fleeting. On this, you just have to trust the old people. Remember when you were really small and cried and cried over something? Well, it didn't last. That's kind of what it's like- awful things happen, you feel like there's a rock in the pit of your stomach, somehow time goes by and it gets better. I promise you, it ALWAYS gets better.

The students, a girl and boy, who were involved in the taping and posting-- they are being charged with bias crime, invasion of privacy and possibly other things. Their college life is over. They will have to live with this death the rest of their lives-- and their families are devastated. What they did was so wrong- but also so kid-stupid. Not to mention mean. And so their lives will be different forever- but even so- their families will love them and they will have time enough to hopefully live in such a way as to make meaning from their mistake.

So, my beautiful girl, never, ever think something is unfixable. NOTHING you do will ever keep us from loving you. NOTHING you do could be so awful you can't get past it.

And if someone is mean to you, and it isn't something you can ignore-- seek out people to talk to about it. Surround yourself with people who are supportive. If you ever need help and don't know how to ask- try writing a letter instead. And right now- before you might need such help- think about who you would talk to if needed. In the midst of turmoil sometimes we don't always think as clearly- having a plan makes it easier to find help in crisis. And remember there are always alternatives. Always.

Finally, don't be mean. Don't let other people be mean.
Stand up for the underdog, protect those who aren't as smart or confident or easygoing as yourself.
Treat people's feelings like fragile little puppies- if you play with them- be gentle.

I love you so much and I know you really don't need me to tell you this stuff.... but it's my job.
Love and hugs,

Monday, October 11, 2010

Keeping a safer home...

The next time you open your kitchen or medicine cabinet, take a close look at the items stored inside. If you are like me, you will find a variety of products from household cleaners, to personal care products and medicines. You depend on these items and are so used to having them in your home, but have you thought about how harmful and toxic they can be to your child or pet?

Lets take a look at some potential harmful products and strategize how to keep healthier, safer products in our homes.

I have come across an amazing line of home products that I now use exclusively in my home. They are more affordable than most brands your finding at the supermarket, costco, etc. and more importantly they actually work! I will share more about these soon...but for now...back to prevention.

Make sure ingredients are clearly listed
Whether you contact a poison control center or a doctor during an emergency, a list of ingredients is important for quick assessment and assistance. If you don't know the contents, treatment may be delayed until the contents are identified.

Wouldn't t be nice to eliminate these products from your household entirely!?

Choose the right product packaging
Many products are available in spray-pump, aerosol or twist-off cap containers. Select the spray or aerosol container because a child may be exposed to larger quantities of potentially harmful substances if the contents can be poured, rather than sprayed. If using harmful products always make sure they are in child-resistant packaging!

Can you imagine not having to be concerned with safety caps because the products your using are not toxic?!

Give your children vitamins without iron
Unless specifically recommended by your pediatrician, choose a multivitamin without iron for your child. Children's vitamins account for a large number of childhood poisonings because the vitamins are designed to attract children (usually chewable tasting like candy). Vitamins with iron can cause serious reactions in children.

Use an non-alcoholic mouthwash
Unless your dentist recommends otherwise, switch to a non-alcoholic mouthwash. Mouthwash attracts children because of its bright color and sweet minty taste. When swallowed by your child, alcohol can produce serious toxic effects, requiring medical treatment for children.

Mothballs/flakes contain either naphthalene or paradichlorobenzene. Naphthalene is three times as poisonous as paradichlorobenzene and may cause dangerous blood problems in children.

Prevention is crucial!

Baby powder
Use pure cornstarch baby powder rather than powder containing talc. When dust particles of talc enter the lungs, either through inhalation or swallowing, serious chemical pneumonia may result.

Nail polish remover
Choose a non-acetone nail polish remover. The active ingredient in non-acetone nail polish removers is ethyl acetate which is much less toxic to children than acetone.

Rubbing alcohol
I was no aware of this, but there are several types of rubbing alcohol preparations. Some are clear and contain isopropyl alcohol. Some are green and contain oil of winter green and isopropyl alcohol. The addition of the oil of wintergreen not only gives the alcohol its green color, but masks the smell with an attractive wintergreen aroma — much like candy. Both preparations are dangerous, but clear rubbing alcohol is the safer alternative. The green preparation is much more attractive to children and much more toxic if swallowed.

All insecticides contain potentially poisonous substances. However, the safest choice to make is a product containing pyrethrins. The side effects from exposure to pyrethins may be less dangerous than exposure to other commonly used insecticide ingredients.

Remember, even the "safer alternatives" are not completely harmless, and any exposure to these products should be taken seriously. Call the Poison Control Center if you have any concerns: 1-800-222-1222.

Saturday, October 9, 2010


I have cut down my coffee intake, but on a morning such as this...I really need it. Likely just a cup, but just something to keep my eyes open. I had a rough night sleeping and was up early to a dog who had to go out. One thing I enjoy in my morning cup is a dash of cinnamon. I add it to the beans so it brews into the coffee. And really coffee has never tasted so good. There are health benefits to cinnamon too. Think about adding it to your coffee or steel cut oats in the morning.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Favorite (cilantro) green smoothie

Green smoothie

There are so many different recipes to experiment with when you are looking for a healthy, engergizing boost. Here is a favorite of mine. I also like to keep Kale and spinach on hand. They are great addition in green smoothies.

•Pink Grapefruit
•Vanilla Extract
•BIG pinch of Cinnamon
•Pinch of salt

In a blender, (Vitamix if you have one) throw a pink peeled grapefruit, peeled cucumber, lots and lots and lots of cilantro - like half a bunch, a lime, some pineapple, vanilla extract, BIG pinch of cinnamon, and pinch of salt.

Keeping fruits and vegetables on hand I will often use whatever I have available. I always keep bananas in the freezer too. They are a great way to chill your smoothie.

If I lost you a little with the smoothie try this great cilantro pesto recipe adapted from

1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup pine nuts, toasted
1 bunch fresh cilantro, coarsely chopped (about 2 cups)
1 bunch fresh chives, coarsely chopped (about 1/3 cup)
1/4 cup (packed) fresh mint leaves
1 tablespoon chopped seeded jalapeño chile
1 small garlic clove, peeled
1 teaspoon (scant) coarse kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons fresh lime juice

Add the first nine ingredients into a blender or food processor until smooth. Whisk the lime in last.

This tastes great in a salad, over chicken or tofu. A favorite salad would include field mixed greens, goat cheese, beets, pistachios or walnuts and maybe some dried fruit (apricots and dried cranberries). Enjoy!

healthy. green. mom.: Better than coffee?!

healthy. green. mom.: Better than coffee?!: "Ok - you may laugh at this. But mark my words...This morning after my green smoothie I swear I felt a jolt of healthy, natural energy like ..."

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Better than coffee?!

Ok - you may laugh at this. But mark my words...This morning after my green smoothie I swear I felt a jolt of healthy, natural energy like no other! So many people are not aware of the benefits of cilantro.

1.Makes the skin healthy and glowing.
Healthy skin is the reflection of a healthy body. Digestion and assimilation of healthy things such as cilantro makes the skin look beautiful and glowing. Research shows that cilantro helps in fighting with skin cancer.

2.Aids in weight loss.
Regular intake of cilantro helps in weight loss especially reducing the accumulated fat around the belly. A hormone named Limonene plays the most important role in getting rid of belly fat. Cilantro is a major source of limonene to the body. Limonene present in cilantro prevents the absorption of saturated fats into the stomach. It is these saturated fats that cause the bulge round the belly of the stomach. Cilantro helps to prevent bloating of the belly in just 24 hours from the time it is used.

3.Provides protection from germs
Cilantro contains good quantities of an alcohol known as borneol. This alcohol is quite efficient in destroying viruses and germs that usually cause colds. It also helps the body to fight against other bacteria like salmonella and E. coli and thus improves the resistance of the body towards diseases. Cilantro also greatly increases our ability to clear up recurring infections, both viral and bacterial especially when eaten with omega-3 enriched foods such as nuts.

4.Beneficial to the heart.
Regular intake of cilantro helps to reduce bad cholesterol (LDL) and increases good cholesterol (HDL). Both these acts of cilantro help to maintain the health of the heart.

5.Provides essential nutrients to the body.
Cilantro is an excellent source of antioxidants like phytonutrients and flavonoids, minerals like iron and magnesium and dietary fiber. Regular intake of all these nutrients provides the body with the much needed nutrients.

6.Anti-inflammatory in nature.
Cilantro is anti-inflammatory in nature and helps to alleviate the symptoms of arthritis

7.Protects against urinary tract infections

8.Prevents nausea

Cilantro is a family member of the carrot family and is great as an edible garnish. It can help rid the body of toxins too. From decreasing mercury and aluminum levels to cleasing blood.

Did you have any idea cilantro was such a powerhouse nutrient?

Stay tuned for my favorite Cilantro recipes!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Chicken Chili

Brrr...the weather has dropped and it is cold. 60 Degrees never felt so bleak. After all the heat waves of the summer I have a feeling the winter will be brutal. In preparation for the dropping temperatures I am changing my menu dramatically. Lots of root veggies, soups and warming foods. Here is a great recipe for Chicken Chili. I also like to make a veggie chili substituting the chicken for soy ground meat.

•1/4 cup olive oil
•1 1/3 cups chopped onion
•3 jalapenos, chopped
•6 garlic cloves, chopped
•2 1/4 pounds skinless boneless chicken, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
•3 1/2 tablespoons chili powder
•2 tablespoons tomato paste
•1 tablespoon ground cumin
•1 tablespoon dried oregano
•2 15- to 16-ounce cans white beans, drained, juices reserved
•2 15-ounce cans diced tomatoes in juice
•1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
Dash of cayenne pepper, red pepper flakes and juice from 1/2 a lime

1. Heat oil in heavy large pot over medium-high heat.
2. Add onion, jalapeno pepper, and garlic; sauté until vegetables begin to soften, about 5 minutes.
3. Add chicken; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Sauté until chicken is no longer pink outside, about 5 minutes.
4. Mix in chili powder, tomato paste, cumin, and oregano.
5. Add beans(reserved bean juices) and canned tomatoes. Simmer until chicken is cooked through and chili is thickened, about 25 minutes. If chili is too thick, add bean juices by the tablespoon to thin.
6.Season chili to taste with salt and pepper.
Mix in cilantro and serve.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Newest favorite Drink!~

Everyone is aware of water's enumerable benefits - nothing beats a cold gulp of pure water. But some things come pretty close… MADE!

Here's the idea behind MADE: paying attention to what we consume, not just to avoid the bad but also to embrace the good. And enhance it! Certified organic, all-natural and totally refreshing with bright, crisp flavors like Blueberry Lemonade and Blackberry Peach. MADE contains only the best organic, natural ingredients. Vegan and Gluten free too!

Conjured in a kitchen using ingredients grown by farmers, MADE draws its name from just that. It’s made by people for people. The result is simple, honest refreshment.

Here's the scoop on MADE. It's manufactured aseptically which allows it to be packaged without preservatives, making it healthy for consumers and allowing it to be shipped and stored without refrigeration, which the earth thanks them for. All bottles are #1 (the most widely accepted for recycling), and are BPA Freeh. Always awesome to see a company’s considerations extending to all facets of the product.

MADE comes in eight great flavors including: Raspberry Peach, Strawberry Lemonade and Cranberry Limeade, available in natural and gourmet grocery stores across the country. For more information, go to:

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Find out what is making your child sick...

As children start school and the weather begins to change cold and flu season are upon us. I came across this great resource to answer your questions regarding symptoms and what is making your child sick.

Here is to a quick, and healthy fall and winter!

Monday, September 20, 2010

My latest, greatest finds...

Always a fan of fashion - I remember moving to New York City and going crazy over all the fabulous shopping! At the time it seemed my job was to pay rent, go shopping and go out. I may not have taken seriously finding great designer deals. I saw something I loved and I figured out how to get it. These days...things are quite different. I LOVE scoping out and finding great deals. I have a little more time on my hands and with the economy the way it is who can afford to not make their money stretch as fas as possible. Also becoming a mother I find myself buying things for my son, or husband definitely before buying for myself!

Last week I ran into Daffy's on Chestnut Street. It is not a store I frequent, But I had noticed they have great European Brands for children. Skyler is due for a new pair of sneakers and I love their selection. Not only did I find him amazing sneakers at a fraction of what they normally cost, they had some great toys too. A large selection of Melissa and Doug, great children's kitchen set, race cars, puzzles, etc.

On my way out I decided to just sweep thru the women's shoes. I knew I was pressing my luck and was on borrowed time, but I found the most amazing European OTK boots (at the right price too!~). Very successful trip! The fall and winter are upon us and I know my haviana's just won't take me thru it!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Eating Mindfully

As I have gotten older (and of course wiser) I have taken a new approach to eating. I have the knowledge to know what foods are both good and bad for me. I know that not one diet or eating plan will work for everyone and finding what works best for you can be a process. Too many people have a love/hate relationship with food which is not healthy. We need to eat to live not necessarily live to eat. Proper nutrition gives us the building blocks to grow and function throughout the day.

Mindful eating (also called intuitive eating) uses our internal cues for hunger, appetite and satiety to guide us in eating. As infants, we naturally follow these cue, but as outside influences take over we often times sway from these natural habits.

Mindful eating is positive. It's part of living well, leading a healthy lifestyle and accepting the diversity of size of bodies in their healthy states.

Mindful eating uses our bodies' cues to guide us in when, what and how much to eat for satisfaction and well-being. By listening to your body, focusing on the foods you crave and savoring the taste most often you will eat less and enjoy your food more. Afterall if you body craves something it often needs the nutrients.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Fennel Salad - what flavor!~

Tonight I made a wonderful fennel salad. I love to mix things up in the kitchen. Dinner is always complemented with some sort or soup or salad. Tonights salad really brought out the flavors of the other ingredients and is such a lovely way to start (or finish) a meal.

Fennel Bulb (Anise)
Olive Oil
Fresh Grated Cheese

Shave fennel bulb with slicer crosswise into paper-thin slices until you have enough to measure 1 packed cup. Mix in bowl with olive oil, fresh lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste. Shave fresh parmesan or other cheese over top and mix well.


Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Fall is in the Air

The weather is beautiful. The extreme heat is gone. It is almost chilly in the morning. A very refreshing time of year. What I am most excited for as the season changes is moving into the next phase of seasonal eating. I absolutely adore root vegetables. They are so tasty - and grounding. Root vegetables are exactly as they sound - the roots of plants used as vegetables. These veggies are full of nutrients and thrive during these months...especially at a time when other fruits and veggies are scarce.

Last night I made a great side dish that is so easy to prepare and delicious to keep on hand. The great flavors and colors are big hit with children. You could even cut them in the shape of french fries!

Root Veggie Recipe

(You can easily adapt this to your taste preferences)

Sweet potato
Eggplant I
Lotus root (was an after thought, but would be delicious)

Cut them up into little cubes. Toss them in a bowl with a little Extra Virgin olive oil, Sea Salt, and Pepper. Spread them out on a baking sheet. Bake on 350-400 Degrees. I prefer baking at lower temperatures if time allows. Baking time will vary, but check every 15 mins to spread vegetables around. The last 10-15 minutes feel free to add fresh parmesean cheese, or garlic and rosemary.

Enjoy! I would love to hear your feedback.

P.s. I had a new discovery while cooking this last night. Everyone knows how wonderful raw foods (veggies) are for you. While cutting the beets I came across a new favorite snack. The beets were amazing raw. If you can get over the stained hands - these are full of flavor and crunch too!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Who doesn't need a little vacation?

We are back - from what was a well needed vacation. My husband and I took a few days to relax with friends in The Hamptons for Labor Day while our son Skyler recharged at the beach with Gigi and G-pa. Afterwards we reconnected and continued our vacation together...and then mommy took some time to herself too.

Some alone and special family time together was incredible - visiting a vinyard, relaxing, playing tennis, swimming, grilling! Thank you Amy and David for the most beautiful surroundings and the greatest of friends. Then I jet off to New York City for a few days of "work" helping run and produce a variety of fashion shows and presentations for the Spring 2011 Collections. Being out of my element I love going back to New York to recharge. Everyone else calls it work and I call it my "mommy vacation."

The boys had the most amazing time together. The most time they had ever spend together without mommy. They did everything from swimming, to the petting zoo, car show, amusement park, and Central Park.

It is so wonderful now to be home. So I am back - ready to get back to providing you with the lastest and greatest of all things healthy, green and family.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Who doesn't LOVE mexican food?

As we get ready for a weekend get away I came up with a healthy, fantastic and quick meal to satisfy our hunger. I love to keep (trader joes) low carb whole wheat flour tortilla's on hand. Last night we had a great mix of multigrains (Trader Joe's Multi grain pilaf) and miso kale. I put the leftovers in the tortilla and heated it slightly with some low fat soy mozzarella cheese. Any additional veggies would have worked great (tofu or chicken too). And viola - a quick easy, healthy meal!~

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

100 Degrees...Really?!

The weather this summer has been INSANE! We are on the 8th heat wave of the is unbelievable. I love to find great ways to stay cool in times like these. We love to visit the Please Touch Museum in Philadelphia, hit the beach or pool, and our newest favorite indulgence: Artic Zero! These frozen treats - like ice cream are served in a pint...but get this: The whole pint only has 150 calories. Like a frozen protein shake they come in great flavors such as: chocolate peanut butter, mint chocolate cookie, coffee, cookies and cream, and pumpkin spice.

What is your favorite warm weather indulgence?

Friday, August 27, 2010

School Days...

It's that time - all the children are getting ready to go back to school (or starting school in some cases). Back to school shopping - clothes, shoes, backpacks, supplies. How are you going to document these memorable years?

As seen on the Today Show recently Mom Agenda has created the perfect way to organize your children's school day memories.  Save report cards, artistic creations, and other remarkable work from your little ones.  High quality and durable these keepsakes are meant to last a lifetime!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Favorite new summer cocktail...

The summer is such an amazing time! The weather is warm (or extremely HOT). We love to travel and have been doing a lot of it this summer. We have been spending time at the shore, in the Hamptons, Newport, Block Island, CT...the list goes on. Everyone's mood just seems different.

I came across a favorite summer cocktail I have been enjoying and experimenting with. I learned of it from a restaurent in New York City, Rosa Mexicana. Not only is the recipe fantastic, the ingredients are so spectacular they have so many wonderful uses! Here is my rendition:

2 oz. Crop Harvest Organic Cucumber Vodka
4 oz. Fresh Pineapple juice
3 oz. Bonterra Organic Viognier (White Wine)
English Cucumber
Fresh Mint
Apple sliced
Optional :Simple Syrup (or ginger infused simple syrup)

Serves 3 and is appoximately 105 calories per serving

Saturday, August 21, 2010

The conversion process...big boy bed!

Who would think changing our sons bed from a crib to a big boy bed would be so difficult?

Choosing our sons furniture was a task in itself. What to buy? Something that converts? What color and design?! I fell in love with a French brand, Morigeau Lepine. They are known for their timeless design and durability. I figured to invest in furniture I wanted something that would stand up and last into our son's teen years. We picked a great modern design in a dark wood finish. It looks amazing.

A few months ago our son figured out how to hop out of the crib and we were doomed. Time to ourselves vanished and our son was soon spending the night in our room. It was time to think about his big boy bed and new room design.

Word of advice - get any conversion kits when buying furniture. We decided to wait. Why spend the extra money before we need to? Morigeau along with several other top childrens funiture manufactures went under so not only finding the kit, but the price increased. We were fortunate to get our furniture from Karl's Kids Furniture on Chestnut Street in Philadelphia. They were so helpful throughout the whole process.

Then came getting the kit home and new mattress. All of these processes without an SUV and with baby were quite a challenge. I eventually went over to pick up the mattress and sweet talked a man with a truck to bring it home for me?! Then the process of picking sheets, blankets, etc. Color, design?

So many decisons to make as these children get older. How do you keep them in their room? When is the right time to convert or move them to a bigger bed? Thoughts? Advice?

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Picture perfect...

You know how quickly those first weeks and months pass by?! All of the sudden your little one does not seem so little any more! I came across this great idea I loved and wanted to share with all you new moms. Please take a look. Documenting those times are such a great memory. Print a book or hang photos on the wall. What is your favorite way to document your little ones?

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

The Perfect Egg...everytime

I have gotten the question lately on how to properly cook hard boiled eggs. I often times cook them at the beginning of the week to keep in the fridge for an easy snack. My son and I often just eat the egg whites, but having an occasional yolk is fine too. Egg whites are high in protein and a great snack.

Bring water to boil and carefully immerse eggs into water. Bring temperature down to low and allow eggs to cook for 12 minutes. Take out of water and allow to cool. If the days are a few days old they are often easier to peel the shells off so allow a few days before boiling or store in the refridge for up to 5 days.

Hard boiled eggs are a great snack...also try egg salad or egg white salad (a favorite of mine). Think about limiting mayo, using a low fat alternative, dijon mustard or veganaise.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Quintessential Summer Sunday

We spent the morning in Connecticut at Silverman's Farm with the family. They have an amazing petting zoo with a variety of animals. Skyler had so much fun feeding the animals and playing on the tractors. A highlight of our trip was going to pick apples, peaches and plums. I love the experience of picking fruit (and veggies) with my family. We can talk about the process of the fruit growing, the harvesting and the great recipes we can create with the over abundance of fruit we bring home. Looking forward to sharing them with you!

Friday, August 13, 2010

How are you starting your day?

I enjoy waking up early to get in a little ME time before the little rugrat wakes. This way I get to practice some yoga or do some errands around the house. I try to always start my day with some warm water with lemon. I was totally turned off from this until I saw the benefits. Think of it as Lemon tea (it sounds better than warm water with lemon). It is detoxifying and a great way to start the day. I also find myself drinking less coffee. Usually just a cup. It is also a great way to get hydrated. Your body will often crave more if it needs it. Check it out and let me know what you think?

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Mommies and Manicures

One of the most ideas ever! Too often as mom's we forget about taking care of ourselves. What better way to spend time with your girlfriends and take care of a little pampering at the same time. We are going to start making this a ritual...not every week, but often enough that we take the time to take care of ourselves. If you are in the Philadelphia area and want to join us please contact me for more details.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

A new beginning...

I am so excited to welcome you to my new blog: I have been thinking about putting something together for some time now - actually, my husband made the suggestion shortly after delivering our son, Skyler. We managed to conquer a new City, Philadelphia, make it thru an incredible Nutrition program guided by the leaders in the Industry - Columbia University and The Institute for Integrative Nutrition, and doing so all while newly pregnant. I have made some amazing friends while doing so and love to share my words of experience, adventure and advice. So please join us and share with your friends. I would love your feedback, questions and support!