food & drink

How a Smoothie Changed my Life: The Fab Four Smoothie

February 25, 2018

At the core of many health movements, you’ll find a smoothie. A lot of them are chock full of fruit, while some rely on sugary ‘protein’ powders. The smoothie that changed my life, also known as the Fab Four Smoothie, has neither of these, but is instead a complete meal created from REAL FOOD ingredients.

I have had somewhat of a complicated relationship with smoothies. At my first attempts at being ‘healthy’ when I was in college, I thought a ‘smoothie’ was a great way to work towards my health goals. The smoothies I made were heavy in dairy and fruit, and not much else. I would be hungry an hour later but, because of my really limited knowledge about nutrition, I didn’t understand why.  I had totally subscribed the idea that a calorie was a calorie, and paid no attention to the quality or type of food I was eating. I now know that, for me at least, a smoothie chock full of fruit and dairy is a recipe for spiked blood sugar and a pretty bad stomach ache. These fruity drinks aren’t necessarily bad, but they sure as heck shouldn’t be considered a meal.

I then went through a phase where I was overly hung up on eating ‘real food’, during my strict paleo days. I had completely removed dairy, grains, legumes, and processed foods from my diet. I also truly believed that since our caveman ancestors chewed all their food, I should also chew all my food and didn’t think smoothies played any part in a healthy diet (I’m sure my past experience with my sugar bombs clouded my judgement here). While I still think this is more true than not, through experimentation (and through finding the smoothie that changed my life) I now believe in a more balanced approach (surprise surprise, right?)

wellness

Intentions: February 2018

February 1, 2018

Is it just me, or was January both 20 years long but also gone in a blink of an eye? I felt like in the midst of it, it felt like it would never end but now that it is February 1st, I can’t help but think “where did this past month go?!”

As I do every month, I’ve put together my intentions for February 2018. I have already seen a lot of comments online where people are reporting feeling sad or discouraged for ‘breaking’ their resolutions. I also found myself falling into the trap of feeling like I wasn’t living up to my intentions that I had set for the beginning of the year. I did some work to remind myself that I have all YEAR to work towards the intentions I set a month ago for the New Year, and that I can only learn from each day and the choices I make.

My February intentions are aligned with my overall theme of 2018: to be more mindful and to live authentically. I believe the things listed will truly help me live and be my most authentic self.

wellness

The Self Love Clubhouse: The Online Community for Fostering Confidence and Love for Yourself

January 17, 2018

Self love has been getting lots of good press recently, from countless wellness publications and bloggers posting about their self-care routines, more and more nutritionists recommending people take time for themselves, and people starting to outwardly share what they love about their bodies and themselves. This new direction of the movement is absolutely necessary—I truly believe we can’t be our best selves unless we learn to love ourselves. I also recognize this can be really difficult. We are told that self love is important, but are never taught how to love ourselves. How do you start loving yourself when diet culture and the media has inundated us with images of how we should look and what we should change for decades? You could start with the Self Love Clubhouse.

food & drink

Adaptogenic Mexican Hot Chocolate

December 6, 2017
vital proteins hot cocoa

As the weather gets cooler, I find myself wanting to stay in doors more and becoming a bit slower in my day-to-day. I am much more active when the weather is warmer and as winter approaches I crave stillness and time at home. I also crave delicious hot drinks to warm me from within. This Adaptogenic Mexican Hot Chocolate recipe is a way to indulge in something delicious while also supporting my body and overall health.

This Adaptogenic Mexican Hot Chocolate can be made both paleo and vegan and really can be tailored to your individual health needs. Paleo? Use nut-based milk. Vegan? Omit the collagen peptides. The use of adaptogens supports the body on a cellular level, and can be switched up depending on what your body is needing.

music

Monthly Playlist & Intentions: December [2017]

December 2, 2017

Happy December (one day late, I know). I put together this playlist with the intention of sharing song you can listen to while cozying up on the couch with some tea. With Mercury being in retrograde this month, I’m trying to remember to not sweat the small stuff. I’ve also been doing a lot of reflection on the past year. Overall, I’ve had an amazing 2017 and want to make sure this year goes out with a bang.

I have gotten into the practice of writing down my intentions at the beginning of each month. This helps me narrow in on a few themes that will help guide me and remind me of what’s important. I enjoy coming back to these intentions throughout the month, as well as looking back to see how my priorities have shifted and changed.

wellness

My Wellness Holiday Wishlist (2017)

November 24, 2017

It’s official: the start of the holiday season is here! While some parts of the holiday began way before Thanksgiving (I see you, Starbucks cups and decorations at every mall in America), I always take the day after Thanksgiving as being the official start of the holiday season. This is the time where we start shopping for our loved ones, and stop buying for ourselves. I have seen so many good gift guides on the internet this season. As I sat down to write my own wellness gift guide, I kept realizing something. I have been shopping for myself! Instead of creating a gift guide for the common reader, I have been creating my own wellness holiday wishlist.

So, instead of fighting it, I’ve decided to embrace it. Here is my own personal wellness holiday wishlist. If you follow me and my blog, we probably have some of the same interests. You may have a loved one who has just gotten into crystals and you have no idea how to help them foster this new love. Maybe you need to send a family member a much-needed hint.

Without further ado, here’s my personal wellness holiday wishlist. This are products I haven’t tried yet but rather have been ogling over for awhile. To check out products I already love, make sure to check out The Shop!

wellness

A Gratitude Practice for Anyone and Everyone

November 23, 2017

Happy Thanksgiving! This morning (still in San Diego), we went to La Jolla cove. While taking in the beauty, I started to journal and really think about what the holiday season and gratitude both mean to me. I absolutely love the holiday season and Thanksgiving for many reasons. I love that it brings family together, that people put others first and, for lack of a better term, people are ‘on their best behavior’ at this time of year. I also love that it seems to be the only time of the year where we all collectively acknowledge what we are grateful for. I almost see Thanksgiving as a gratitude practice for anyone and everyone.

I have been trying more and more to practice gratitude year-round, that is acknowledging what I’m grateful for and why, in an attempt to live a bit more in the present. It has helped me see the good in my day to day, and has really started to shift my focus to the positive.

As I began to journal this morning, I thought of all of the people around the world getting ready to share what they are thankful for. I sat on a cliff at La Jolla cove and began to write about all I’m thankful and grateful for.

Then, I started to scroll Instagram and Facebook and I felt grateful for everyone who shared. I also couldn’t help but notice that I saw so many people that otherwise may not participate in sharing their gratitude normally sharing today. And that put a huge smile on my face.

I truly believe that the world will be a better place once we all start to recognize what we are grateful for daily. When I first began my personal gratitude practice, I was really intimidated. I felt like I didn’t know what I was doing, and it felt weird to think about what I’m grateful for every day.

If you’re feeling like you want to invite gratitude into your life every day, Thanksgiving can be a perfect time to begin. Below you’ll find my gratitude practice for anyone. Nine questions you can use to dig deeper into what you’re grateful for. Fill them all out or pick a few that resonate you.

food & drink

Planning a Vegan and Paleo Friendly Thanksgiving

November 22, 2017

This year for Thanksgiving, instead of heading back to the East Coast, Devlin and I went down to San Diego to meet my parents for a week-long vacation. The four of us rented an adorable Airbnb and, in addition to taking in all San Diego has to offer, we are planning on cooking our Thanksgiving meal in this beautiful listing’s kitchen.

Thanksgiving for four people may seem like an easy task, but due to our dietary restrictions and preferences we need to get a little bit creative. While I prefer to eat Paleo, my parents are both Vegan. Lately I’ve been incorporating a little bit of dairy & sprouted grains into my meals, but still prefer to cook this way. On paper, these restrictions seem to clash but we are determined to make our Vegan and Paleo friendly Thanksgiving work.

food & drink

Exploring Keto with The Big 15 Ketogenic Diet Cookbook

November 15, 2017

The Big 15 Ketogenic Diet Cookbook, the newest cookbook from Megan Flynn Peterson, provides over 150 high fat, low carb recipes that highlight 15 key ingredients with 300 recipe variations. I was so excited to get a copy of the cookbook (now available for preorder here), and have truly enjoyed cooking my way through it.

Recently, I had lunch with a friend of mine (Megan of Freckled Italian). Megan and I spoke about her and her husband’s experience with the Ketogenic diet (or ‘Keto’), the cookbooks she’s written (including her newest cookbook—The Big 15 Ketogenic Diet Cookbook) and some of our favorite Instagram foodies. I had been intrigued by Keto—which is a high fat, low carb diet—for awhile, but was honestly pretty intimidated by it all and I had some questions. Just how low carb is Keto? What kind of fats am I eating? What the heck is ketosis??

Linda Schneider for The Big 15 Ketogenic Diet Cookbook

music

PLAYLIST: November [2017]

November 1, 2017

Happy November! I know I am not the only one who is completely shocked with how quickly this year has gone by. I also know that many of you are counting down the days until 2017 is over, holding on to the hope of what 2018 *could* bring.

If this is your thinking, I hear you but I want to challenge you to not look too far forward. Try to enjoy the moment, and enjoy this season for what it is. I always see November as the last true month of fall; a month before “hibernation”, if you will.

November 2017 starts with a Full Moon in Taurus in its first week, and this moon is said to help us feel more emotional and intuitive, and is a great time to welcome new fortune and relationships—but only if you keep an open mind, with a positive outlook. It’s tough to really reap the benefits of the season if you’re looking to what comes after. So meditate an set some intentions this Full Moon.

The middle of the month (around the 11th) is a great time for self-actualization – put those intentions you set to good use, and be confident in what you want from the universe. To assist in this season, I’ve created my very first playlist specifically for Julie Laufer Official. These playlists will go live monthly, and will be the perfect start to every month.

November’s playlist features upbeat songs with soft vocals and dreamy instrumentals to celebrate the last of fall before winter comes.

Perfect to listen to driving, cooking Thanksgiving dinner, or finally putting away your summer clothes for good. Listen below and follow along!

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