Understanding Your Milk Choices: Oat, Almond, Dairy, and More!

Like yogurts, there are a TON of different milks on the market, so it's important to know what milk choices are available! With the influx of milks to the market, it's hard to break through the clutter, especially when each is claiming to be are healthier than the rest.  I know it can be really hard to choose which milk is best for you when there are so many milk choices.  A key thing to consider, is whether you're lactose free, vegan, or not...not only that but not all milks are created equal! It is imperative to choose a milk that has a limited amount of mystery ingredients and/or artificial ingredients and sugars. 

Did you know that 65% of the adult population is lactose intolerant? This can lead to a lot of digestion and skin issues for some people who consume dairy, especially the non-fermented forms of dairy (fermented forms = Greek yogurt, Kefir, cottage cheese). Lactose intolerance also really depends on your genetics. For example, only 5% of people of northern European descent are lactose intolerant vs. up to 90% of people from East Asian descent are lactose intolerant. So it just goes to show that every body is different and has unique needs.  That’s why it’s a beautiful thing that there are so many different milk alternatives on the market today and why I’ve broken down the pros and cons each milk for you below. It’s also really important for you to listen to your body. If certain milks do not agree with you, skip them! As you guys know I’m always an advocate for finding the right choices for YOU. 

In order to make understanding the different milk choices you have available easy for you, I wanted to walk you through some of the PROs and CONs of each! One thing to consider as you assess which milk is best for you are the ingredients! 

Here is a breakdown of the most common types of milks:

Almond Milk: 

Pro: Low in calories, low in sugar (if you opt in to the unsweetened) contains vitamin E, lactose free, source of calcium, dairy free, and vegan.

Con: Low in protein⠀

 

Cashew Milk: 

Pro: Good source of fiber, full of iron, low In calories, lactose free, it may boost your heart health as this plant-based drink is rich in polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fatty acids

Con: Low in protein. ⠀

Coconut Milk: 

Pro: Contains potassium, lactose free, and may reduce inflammation.⠀

Con: Low in protein, higher in calories & saturated fat.

 

Dairy Milk: 

Pro: High in protein, Highest in calcium. ⠀

Cons: Higher in sugar & should be avoided by people with a lactose intolerance. Also, U.S. dairy is pasteurized, which causes it to lose some of its beneficial nutrients and enzymes.⠀

 

Soy Milk: 

Pro: High in protein, vitamin D & B12, lactose free.⠀

Con: Not the best choice for those with allergies and/or who already have an estrogen dominance/too much estrogen in their system.⠀

 

Oat Milk: 

Pro: Nut Free, soy Free, lactose free, can help lower cholesterol and aids digestive health.⠀

Cons: Can be higher in sugar , calories & carbs depending on the brand. (always check those labels!)

 

With all of this in mind, remember to opt for the unsweetened versions when you buy them at the store! Which kind of milk is your favorite?


how to beat cold & flu season

Tips to Beat Cold & Flu Season

Anyone else feeling that Winter weather getting to them? Have co-workers calling out sick more often than not? Need some tips to beat cold & flu season? You guessed it, we’ve officially moved into the season of sickness.  While there isn’t a cure for the common cold, there are ways to avoid it entirely or expedite your healing time using natural methods. While it may be easy to reach for the drug store products,  they’re not necessarily the best & sometimes not even backed by science. All in all, it’s important to understand what works best for you, there are preemptive steps you can take to help when you’re feeling under the weather.  

Here are some of my tips to beat "cold & flu season"

how to beat cold & flu season

Try To Avoid: 

  • Alcohol: This holiday beverage can completely dehydrate you, and weaken your immune system entirely.  This in turn will make it a longer, more difficult process for your body to recover. If you’re fighting off a cold, I would high recommend saving that glass of wine for when you’re feeling better. Trust me, it’ll be worth it! 
  • Sugar & Sugary Drinks: These offenders tend to increase inflammation in the body, and reduce the ability of our white blood cells to work properly. This combo will definitely leave you feeling worse, rather than better. So try to avoid processed sugars & sugary drinks as you work to heal yourself. 
  • Heavily Processed Foods:  These culprits are also full of pro-inflammatory ingredients, so it’s best to save your treat meals for when the sickness has passed. 

“Must Haves” to Recover: 

  • Hot Tea: This tasty heated beverage acts as a decongestant, helping clear sinuses of mucus. Teas also contain polyphenols which are a natural antioxidant and they can help with sore throats. If you’re starting to get an itchy throat or feel a cough coming on, I would recommend swapping tea for coffee! 
    • Hot Teas I love: Chamomile, Hibiscus, Peppermint, Sage, Ginger, Rose Hip, and Green
  • Natural Raw Honey: Interestingly enough, raw natural honey has antibacterial effects and there’s some evidence that it stimulates the immune system. 
    • Remember you don’t need a large amount as it contains a lot of natural sugars, but a ½ teaspoon should work great.⠀
  • Vitamin C Rich Foods: These immunity boosters have a strong antioxidant content that can help boost your blood antioxidant levels. Foods like bell peppers, broccoli, strawberries, oranges, kale, etc are packed with vitamin C so stock up on those. 
  • Leafy Greens: I love incorporating leafy greens into my routine if I’m starting to get sick as they’re packed full of vitamins, minerals and fiber. They’re also loaded with beneficial plant compounds that act as an antioxidant that fights inflammation.⠀
    • Pro Tip: Not a huge greens lover?! Throw them into your morning smoothie for a quick morning boost.
  • Apple cider vinegar (ACV): I’m sure you’ve heard about me talk about ACV, but this compound helps with overall digestion which supports immune function since most of your immune system lies in your digestive tract.
  • Almonds: One of my favorite snacks! Almonds are rich in vitamin E, which is very important for a healthy immune system. They make for a great snack when you’re trying to get better. 
  • Probiotics: Live cultures in probiotic and fermented foods stimulate the immune system & fight infections, making them a good choice for when you’re on the mend. 
    • Try fueling up on probiotics through Kefir, Yogurt, Kimchi, or probiotic supplements. 

As another preemptive measure, adding a vitamin D supplement into your routine during the winter, is a great way to facilitate getting Vitamin D if you can't get outside.  Vitamin D can be a beneficial immunity booster in helping fight off the cold or flu. 

Hope these tips help get you through the cold season! Would love to hear your best tips for fighting off sickness too :)


Our Wedding Day

Taking a break from my usual nutrition and health content to talk all things wedding! On Sunday October 27, 2019, I officially became Mrs. Rocchio! Honestly, I never thought I would have a full-on wedding. Even Chris and I would joke about throwing a casual party instead of a such a formal event. Four years later...here we are. 

When we thought about it more, we really couldn’t pass up the opportunity to have so many of our close family and friends by our side, for a weekend full of love . If you’re on the fence about having a wedding, I have to say, “go for it!” It was one of the most beautiful, special, unforgettable experiences I've ever had in my life. I really can’t even put it into words. 

Even though words and pictures won’t do it justice, I did want to share some of my special wedding details with you, to connect with you on a more personal level. Whether you’re looking to have a wedding in the future, love all things wedding or just want to get to know a little more about me, this blog is for you!

Every girl’s favorite part..lets talk about the dress

The Wedding Dress

And the dress didn’t come easy! After going to three different bridal showrooms, I finally settled on a stunning strapless wedding dress from Kinsley James. It hugged all the right places and Chris definitely approved after the reveal ;)

You know what they say...it's all about "location, location, location!"

The Wedding Location

In true California fashion, we decided to have the wedding on the beach. Fun fact: Chris and I had our first kiss on the beach in Santa Monica, California. 

Living in Los Angeles, we decided we wanted to get out of the hustle and bustle of LA, and head south down to San Diego.  It was important for us to have something intimate, yet beachy, so we landed on a beautiful resort on Mission Bay in San Diego, The Bahia Resort. They’ve definitely mastered the art of weddings there, and I highly recommend that location.   We had a really beautiful setup right alongside the water for the ceremony of my dreams.  

After the ceremony, guests enjoyed a cocktail hour by the water, followed by our reception, which was on a classic three story boat, just a short walk away from the beach (pictured below). With beautiful stained glass windows on the inside, and a big room for the dance floor and bar on the bottom, it was the perfect evening location.  Our guests got to enjoy a delicious healthy meal with wine, desserts, and cocktails!

"Beauty is in the eye of the beholder." Or...the florals ;)

At first, this was the part I cared the least about. “Expensive flowers… why do we do this?” - I thought to myself. Then when I was brainstorming ideas with the Moments In Bloom flower team, we decided to add some unique elements to the bouquets and arrangements, including a whole artichoke in mine! Pretty fitting right?! After thinking about it more, I realized that the flowers could also be a beautiful and fun way to sneak in some symbolic touches to the wedding. After all, Chris and I have always bonded over meal prep, veggies and healthy nutrition - why not add an element of that in our wedding. 

We also added mini olive branches to the bouquets and used them on the men’s boutonnieres since Chris’ whole family is Italian. If you look close enough, they kind of look like small dark berries on the bouquets.

The Sweetest Thing? The Wedding Cake! 

As healthy as I am, you best believe I can get down on some wedding cake. The cake tasting was a very fun part of the process! After the tasting, we picked this unreal chocolate, banana cake flavor for the bottom tier and the top two tiers were actually my personal favorite cake flavor, red velvet. The half and half frosting was also another fun touch too. 

Of course, my favorite part of the cake was the wedding topper. Chris holding me up in an overhead barbell press and our wedding date on two kettlebells was very us. The only thing that would’ve made it even better is if I was doing a bicep curl with my one arm (LOL). 

The fab cakes team in San Diego (3X Food Network Car War Winners) did a fantastic job! Not only did it look amazing but also tasted out of this world. Chris and I did freeze the top tier of the cake to eat on our 1 year anniversary (fingers crossed the cake still tastes good). 

Getting Ready for the Big Day...Hair and Make Up

After testing out a couple different hair looks, my hairstylist, Joanna, and I decided to go with a wavy/curly look pinned to one side. It was the best of both worlds - of having some hair up but also allowing my long hair to blow free.

Chris was very concerned about the makeup...haha! He really likes my natural look and didn’t want it too caked on for the wedding, which I definitely appreciate.  The most important part of marriage is honesty, right?! He sent me multiple texts leading up to our special day, pleading with me to ensure the makeup artist didn’t paint on an over-the-top look (LOL). Although I did have a lot of makeup on that day, my makeup artist, Vanny did an amazing job, making it look natural and not “over-the-top.” Chris was very impressed and loved my makeup look - winning!

The Wedding Invitations, You're Invited...

Minted Weddings did a fabulous job with the design of our wedding invitations. We actually had a crest at the top that includes the edelweiss, to represent my Austrian heritage (my dad was born and raised in Austria) and olive branches to represent Chris’ Italian family origin. 

Pro Tip: Don’t make the mistake Chris and I did and forget to leave place for people to leave their names on the RSVPs….whoops! Luckily, many wedding attendees put their return address on the invitations but we did have to do some follow texting to figure out the rest (LOL). 

Other Fun Wedding Details...

I actually had six bridesmaids, two of them were guys because...well hello this is 2019, and you can do WHATEVER YOU want.  There are NO rules to weddings and you can truly curate it to be exactly what you want. I was also spoiled and had two maids of honor; my long time best friend from college, Robin O’neal, who helped plan a lot of the wedding and my childhood best friend, Lauren Phelps, who is just as addicted to working out as me and gave a phenomenal speech at my wedding. 

I also have to give a special shoutout to my wedding planner, Krissie aka White Lace Events. The day ran flawlessly, all her vendor recommendations were phenomenal and any trouble shooting pre-wedding she was there for me, with the most energetic and positive attitude!All photos you’ve seen in this blog were shot by my talented friends at Cuckoo’s Nest West, Hailee and Jake. I also highly recommend them if you need any type of wedding photography, engagement photos, or lifestyle shoot.

Late Night Bites

Doggos Gus Food Truck came through with the late night gourmet hot dogs at the end of the reception. Chris’ dad even said “they were the best hot dogs he’s had in his life!” If you’re near the San Diego area and have an event, I definitely recommend checking them out.

I hope you enjoyed this blog. I never really used to get what the hang up was about weddings until now. I see why it’s such a big deal because honestly, it's one of the best experiences you’ll have in your life!


4 Healthy Pumpkin Recipes You'll Love

Now that we’re well into PUMPKIN season, I wanted to share some of my favorite healthy pumpkin recipes you’ll love! These are great to add into your routine for something festive or great to bring with you to events.  Even if cooking isn’t your forte, these recipes will be easy to make, so you can impress your friends or indulge yourself!  Enjoy these healthier versions of your favorite pumpkin treats!

Healthy Pumpkin Recipe #1: Paleo Pumpkin Bread

Love pumpkin bread? Me too! Which is why I wanted to share my FAVORITE paleo pumpkin bread recipe that has only 195 cals per slice and is free of gluten and refined sugar!

healthy pumpkin recipe

What you need:

Serving size 8 pieces total⁠

  • 1 ½ cups blanched almond flour⁠
  • ¾ tsp baking soda ⁠
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon ⁠
  • ¼ tsp pumpkin pie spice ⁠
  • 4 eggs ⁠
  • ¾ cup canned pumpkin ⁠
  • ¼ cup maple syrup⁠
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract (optional)⁠
  • 1 ½ - 2 tsp monk fruit or stevia (optional if you want it sweeter)⁠

Instructions: 

  • Preheat the oven to 350F⁠
  • Whisk the eggs together⁠
  • Add pumpkin puree & maple syrup then mix well.⁠
  • Add in the almond flour and stir with wet mixture.⁠
  • Add the baking soda, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, & vanilla extract.⁠
  • Optional: add monk fruit or stevia.⁠
  • Spray a 8in x 4in loaf pan with coconut oil. Tip: add 2 thick parchment strips to the loaf pan to make it easy to remove loaf when done. Add in the bread batter. Smooth out with spoon or spatula.⁠
  • Bake for 45 minutes at 350F⁠
  • Let cool and dig in!⁠

Healthy Pumpkin Recipe #2: Homemade PSL 

If you’re craving the seasonal favorite the PSL or pumpkin spice lattes, try swapping your morning smoothie with this tasty Fall-inspired smoothie!

This healthier version can be enjoyed on a more regular basis from the comfort of your own home. This healthier version has only 86 calories and 1g of sugar. 

What you’ll need: 

  • 8-16oz vanilla almond milk
  • 2 Tbsp pumpkin purée
  • 1 instant coffee packet or espresso shot
  • Dash of pumpkin pie spice
  • Stevia to taste

What to do:

  • Heat the almond milk on the stove. (Or enjoy cold over ice!)
  • Combine hot almond milk and all other ingredients into a blender
  • Blend & enjoy!

Healthy Pumpkin Recipe #3: Paleo Pumpkin Soup

Cold Weather? Warm up with one of my favorite recipes for a hearty, yet delicious Paleo Pumpkin Soup!  Enjoy the festive Fall feels without derailing your health & fitness goals!

healthy paleo pumpkin soup

What you’ll need for the soup:⁠

  • (makes about 6, 1 cup servings) ⁠
  • 15 oz can pumpkin puree ⁠
  • 2 carrots, cut into chunks ⁠
  • 1/2 medium onion, cut into chunks ⁠
  • 1 tbsp ghee or avocado oil ⁠
  • 3 cups chicken broth (or veggie broth) ⁠
  • 1 cup full fat coconut milk ⁠
  • 2 tsp minced garlic⁠
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger⁠
  • salt + pepper to taste⁠

What to do:⁠

  • Hit the sauté button on the instant pot and add ghee. ⁠
  • Add the carrots, onion, ginger, sea salt & garlic. Sauté for a few minutes.⁠
  • Add the can of pumpkin puree and the 3 cups chicken broth and stir.⁠
  • Turn off the sauté feature on the instant pot, secure the lid and set to 8 minutes manual on high pressure.⁠
  • Once the instant pot has depressurized naturally, blend the soup with an immersion blender or in a regular blender.⁠
  • Stir in the 1 cup coconut milk and add salt & pepper to taste.⁠
  • Optional: top with arugula and pistachios, then enjoy!⁠

132 calories per serving | 9.5g fat, 10g carbs 3g fiber, 1.5g protein⁠

Healthy Pumpkin Recipe #4: Paleo Pumpkin Fudge 

Last, but certainly not least, my signature four ingredient Paleo Fudge.

paleo pumpkin fudge, healthy pumpkin recipe

What you need for pumpkin fudge:

(Makes about 10 small pieces)

  • 1/2 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1/2 cup creamy almond butter
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup

What to do:

  • Pour all ingredients into a small stovetop pan.
  • Heat on medium heat and stir together.
  • Once completely mixed, pour into a glass dish with parchment paper OR into a silicone ice cube holder.
  • Freeze for at least 2 hours and enjoy! Place in the fridge if you prefer it to be softer.

195 calories per square | 3g protein | 9g carbs | 18g fat

I hope these fall inspired recipes make you as happy as they make me! Which one would you go for first?


Healthy Travel Hacks

It’s almost that time of the year again, travel season! With the holidays quickly approaching, I want to make sure you’re equipped with the tools you need in order to maintain your healthy lifestyle AND enjoy yourself.  Trust me, I know it can be easy to fall off the wagon for the holidays, but it’s super important to try and stay consistent with your eating and workout routine when you can, so you can indulge GUILT FREE! One quick tip to start your trip on the right foot, is maneuvering through your travel plans with ease! It can be really difficult to eat healthy on your travel days and in airports as they don’t always offer the healthiest options, so I wanted to share some great travel hacks that will keep you full and feeling good.  

Honestly, traveling in general no matter how long or short the flight is exhausting.  Being prepared is half the battle! Being prepared doesn’t mean just having your bags packed and ID in hand...being prepared means planning ahead so you can save time, money, and be stress free (kinda)! Packing healthy snacks from home will keep you on track during your travel days and will always be the better choice over airport chips and soda. 

“I really regret being prepared.”- said no one ever. When it comes to traveling, I wanted to clear up a common question I get asked. TSA does, in fact, let ALMOST any solid foods on flights from my experience. They key here is to skip out on the foods that could be questionably liquid. I’ve heard of some friends getting items like nut butters confiscated, so may want to skip out on those types foods.

Now if you haven’t figured out my newest addiction to @WonderfulPistachios - you haven’t paid close enough attention 😉 When I went to Europe for two weeks, I definitely packed a few bags of the Wonderful Pistachios No Shells Roasted & Salted because not having to de-shell pistachios on a plane or car is a life saver and I love banking on them as a filling, delicious snack. #WonderfulPistachiosPartner #WonderfulNut

I always bring a reusable water bottle that I leave empty and refill at the airport. I also usually always pack some veggies in a silicone bag and some fresh fruit too.

Waiting until you get to the airport to buy snacks can mean limited options or if there are healthy food items, they’re usually pretty darn expensive at the airport! While buying a bottle of water is fine, skip the lines and save yourself the money with a refillable bottle.

I hope you found this helpful! What are your favorite travel hacks?


meditation, how to meditate

Why You Should Try Meditation

While taking care of your body is super important, it’s equally as important to take care of your MIND as well.  More times than not, we’re so focused on how we can optimize our physical body, we forget that the mind plays a HUGE role in our ability to feel balanced.  When it comes to self-care for the mind, there are so many different methods of flexing that muscle, staying sharp & centered, which leads me to one of my favorite rituals, meditation

Meditation has been proven to positively impact so many different areas of your life.  Everything from decreased stress, improved control over your reactions & overall emotional stability.  Meditation can be something you incorporate into your morning, nighttime, or even mid-day routine! 

While it may not be easy to make it an everyday habit, you do get better at it over time. I always like to think of meditation as exercise for the brain.  You have to take care of your mind just like you take care of your physical body. It takes practice, but the more you can integrate it into your daily routine, the more it will come naturally and you’ll really come to enjoy it.  A false assumption when it comes to meditation, is that “you’re doing it wrong,” if your mind isn’t completely clear the whole time. Meditation isn’t about staring into the abyss with a blank mind - there are so many different techniques to it! For me,  I like to meditate in a way that really lets my thoughts come and go! Focusing on breath, until I get to a space where my mind is more clear. This is a technique i always encourage people to try if they haven’t meditated before. Another great way you can get into Meditation is through guided apps, like HeadSpace & Calm which can help walk you through the process of relaxing & connecting to your thoughts. 

With time, jumping into meditation does get easier, and your thoughts will start to flow more freely. 

Here are some of the great benefits of making a meditation practice part of your routine:

  1. Meditation led to a thicker brain size: A Harvard study found that the brains of experienced meditators are thicker in the areas that deal with attention and sensory input.
  2. Meditation was linked to better control of emotions & memory: A mindfulness program showed significant increase in grey matter in their brain, specifically in the hippocampus region of the brain associate with memory and emotions.
  3. Meditation has been shown to have a positive effect on genes: Another study showed the switching off of genes associated with chronic inflammatory response & on genes associated with energy function and insulin relegation.
  4. Meditation led to a decrease in the size of the amygdala: AKA the part of the brain associated with fight or flight, anxiety, fear & stress got smaller.

meditation, how to meditate

Making mediation a priority can be a game-changer for not only your mental health, but it can greatly affect your physical health too! Healthy mind, healthy body! Have you tried meditation? If so, I’d love to hear what works best for you!


anti-diet

Everything You Need to Know About the "Anti-Diet"

Ever heard of the “Anti-Diet?” I’m sure you have because it has become quite the topic of conversation! Today, there are so many contradicting opinions floating around about the anti-diet movement, so I thought I’d share some of my thoughts!  I wanted to give you guys the rundown on some of the positive benefits and leave you with some food for thought (literally!).

As many of you have probably seen, there has been a ton of content around the anti-diet, with great learnings and takeaways from the discussion around “diet mentality” or “diet culture”. I wanted to breakdown some of the key takeaways from the knowledge I’ve gained from the movement, but also where I draw the line.  After all, you guys know that I am a firm believer, there is no “one-size-fits-all” methodology, so please do your do-diligence before hopping into any new routine to see if it makes sense for you. 

PROS:

Removes shame or guilt associated with food:  Really, you shouldn’t feel guilty for enjoying food that’s less nutritious. No one should ever judge you or belittle you for your food choices you make, and you shouldn’t do that to yourself. Plus, feeling guilty often only causes us to eat more. While it's always important to make healthy choices, LIFE HAPPENS! It's okay to live a little and enjoy some of those treats here and there without the guilt. 

Being too restrictive doesn’t work:  If you limit yourself to a very finite group of foods for the rest your life, that’s going to be pretty hard to stick to long term. Building flexibility in your routine is key to feeling your best, while also enjoying life.  It's important to understand what works best for you! So think about it as an 80/20 rule, 80% of the time fuel your body with whole, nutritious foods packed with nutrients, so you can indulge here and there without the guilt! You'll find this is much easier to maintain long term. 

All or nothing mindset doesn’t work long-term: While following a plan for a period of time can help, the important piece is to take the learnings of how you could incorporate healthy habits into your lifestyle long term. Maybe some habits work better for you than others. Adopting some healthy habits is better than saying “f*ck it,” if you’re not following a plan perfectly because let’s be real, who the hell is perfect? No one! And that shouldn't be the goal! It's always about balance, everything in moderation. 

anti-diet, anti-diet movement

On the flip side of everything listed above, we don’t want to take it too far.  Too far meaning, that we’re discouraging people who want to work on changing their habits or people who want to educate themselves on more nutritious choices.

Not all food is on an equal playing field when it comes to nourishing your body & giving your body the proper vitamins and minerals it needs to function. So while we definitely should get away from the “I’m going on a diet” mentality, taking action to better yourself and make more nutritious choices will always be a win.

I’m curious to hear your thoughts on this movement too! 


How to Optimize Your Screen Time

In this day and age, it’s almost impossible to go an entire day without coming into contact with a screen.  Whether it’s your phone, computer, tablet, or TV...we’re constantly bombarded with content & tasks on screens.  Both intentional and unintentional, it’s really hard to completely avoid them. Part of refining your daily health & wellness routine doesn’t just stop at nutrition or workouts, it includes everything from meditation to managing your screen time! Excessive screen time can cause problems like sleep disruption, eye strain, vision problems, and even obesity. Over time, all the blue light from screens causes permanent damage to the retina (yikes!).  Since many tasks at school, work, and at home require the use of screens, I wanted to share some tips on how to reduce your time spent on a screen. Plus, I’ll even share some insights on how you can optimize your screen time (when you do have to be ON). 

I know I’m guilty of being on my phone all the time with my job, so I’ve made some small changes to my routine in order to better my eyes & my brain! Ever get headaches from looking at your computer or phone for a long time? That’s the blue light at work, putting strain on both your eyes and your mind. 

Here are a few tips I would recommend in order to minimize the damage from your screen & help you better make use of the time you are on your screen. 

  1. Set an alarm or timer: Try setting a timer to remind you to put the phone away after dinner/before bed. You can also set another one for a few minutes after you wake up in the morning, so that you can wake up slow without immediately checking your phone.
  2. Track your screen time: If your phone has an app that can track your time spent on the phone every week, try it! It can be extremely helpful just to be aware of how much time you are spending on what apps every day and it can even show you how you’ve improved from the week before! 
  3. Find something else to do: Sometimes all it takes is a distraction. When you have spare time, instead of going on your phone or computer, try reading, exercising, mediating, knitting, spending time with friends, basically anything that will get your mind off screen time. 
  4. Get blue light glasses: Sometimes it’s inevitable and you just have to spend time looking at a screen for school or work. In these cases, it can be super helpful to wear glasses that block or absorb the blue light. This can help protect your eyes and improve sleep quality. 
  5. Take breaks: When you do spend a lot of time looking at a screen, make sure you take breaks every now and then to allow your eyes to rest and to move your body. Staying stagnant in front of a screen can not only cause serious eye strain- but it can also create tension in your body. So, taking short breaks can be a great way to combat that. 
  6. Implement Blue Light Filter Apps: If you’re on a computer for work or school, you can also look for Blue Light filter apps that integrate directly into your computer.  This will allow you to actually dim & control the amount of blue light being emitted from your screen so that your eyes aren’t as strained.  

It can be overwhelming but just cutting back a few minutes of screen time a day can be a game-changer. Although some screen time is just inevitable, optimizing it by working “smarter” against some of the effects and trying to reduce it every day can really make a difference. If you have any good tips or tricks you want to share, let me know! 😁


How to Perfect Your Morning & Evening Routine

One of the biggest ways you can set yourself up for success during the week is by working to perfect your morning & evening routine. It’s all about consistency, and knowing what makes you feel good! After all, when you wake up well-rested, relaxed, and have a plan for the day...it is so much easier to achieve your goals and just move through a more balanced day. 

If you’re not a morning person, don’t worry - you’re not alone! So many people struggle to get up with energy in the morning. But guess what? You can make small changes to your morning & evening routine that will allow you to sleep better, feel more relaxed, and wake up more invigorated.  While I know it’s going to be impossible for everyone to transition into a morning person, I want to share some tips on how you can feel better when you wake up. After all, waking up with energy will set the tone for the rest of your day, which will impact whether or not you’re able to reach your goals (ie. if you’re scrambling & late, you’ll likely miss your opportunity to work out and/or making unhealthy choices) . The idea here is to really create those healthy habits around an ideal morning routine & evening routine that will set you up for success. 

Whatever you decide is the “ideal” routine for you, try to stay consistent with it whether it’s morning, evening or both. This way your body and mind can adjust, and in turn, know what to expect so that you can focus on what to tackle during your day. 

Here are some tips on how to perfect your morning and evening routines:

  1. Don’t snooze the alarm: when you wake and snooze your alarm, it confuses your body’s internal clock and causes you to wake up later groggier than if you’d just hopped out of bed. Aim to wake up when you hear the alarm- even if you take your time & wake up slow. This is a game changer, and ultimately your body will start to get used to an ideal time to wake up. 
  2. Go to bed and wake up at the same time every day: Try to make a habit of getting into bed around the same time at night. It’s also important to wake up around the same time daily in order to best support your body’s natural sleep cycle.
  3. Ditch the screen time: Try to not watch tv or be on your phone/computer right before bed or when you wake up. The blue light can disrupt your sleep and the emails and whatnot can lead to a late start in the mornings. I suggest setting a daily alarm about an hour before when you want to go to sleep to remind you to put the phone away. Instead during that time, you can stretch, meditate, or exercise or journal to start and end your day! 
  4. Plan ahead: If you struggle to get moving in the morning, take some time the night before to put out your clothes and anything else you’ll need for the day. This way when you do wake up you’ll be ready to go! 
  5. Meal Prep: this one seems kind of obvious, right? Taking the time to prep your meals ahead of time can lead to really efficient mornings and evenings. 
  6. Try Intermittent Fasting: This is an option that you can integrate into your daily routine as it typically will make you wake up feeling more sharp, clear headed, and focused. *Intermittent Fasting isn’t for everyone, so if this doesn’t work well for your body and lifestyle, don’t worry - you can skip it!
  7. Create a bedtime self care routine: This could include anything from a facial regime you might have, winding down with a book, journaling, exfoliating, jade rolling, etc.  This ensures that you end your day feeling totally relaxed. 

Having a solid routine can truly be the key to success when trying to achieve certain goals. What helps you maintain your perfect morning & evening routines?! 

Xoxo, 

Amanda


MASTER YOUR HEALTH PODCAST LAUNCH!

The wait is finally OVER! If you follow me closely, you know I’ve said “coming soon” on my podcast for a while. Well, now I’m thrilled to announce that we have officially launched our podcast, Master Your Health, which you can listen to here! If you don't have an Apple device, don't worry, you can also stream it here.

As many of you may know, my fiancé, Chris Rocchio and I have been working hard on this podcast for months now, to bring you guys a ton of value and actionable steps when it comes to mastering your health. While most of you may know me for more of my nutritional information and healthy recipes, this podcast is going to be so much more than just nutrition information.  We’ll be chatting with various guests and experts within the field, to maximize your knowledge on all things health, eating, and total body wellness. It’s a totally dynamic show where we’ll cover topics all across the board.  

Everything from nutrition to workouts to recovery to mindset/meditation and healthy tips so you can truly MASTER YOUR HEALTH.  It's all about making incremental changes to your diet & lifestyle, in a way that’s totally do-able. Plus, we'll be sharing a ton of helpful resources in the show notes, so you can continue to refine your healthy routine and ultimately Master Your Health.  

Masteryourhealthy

 

To kick things off, I sat in the hot seat for an intimate interview where I open up about everything from my eating disorder & how I made a full recovery to how I fell in love with fitness & health and developed a better relationship with eating and wellness.  But we didn’t stop there! Not only will you guys get the first listen to episode one - you’ll get to listen to TWO MORE episodes where I sit down with my fiancé Chris to cover topics around strength training, supplementation and recovery and with Tyler from Functional Foods on Naturopathic wellness & the importance of whole foods in your diet. 

We can't wait to hear what you guys think!