Look who made the LA Times?! Congrats Beautycounter!

Look who made the LA Times!? What a fantastic article and preview of exciting things to come. I’m so pleased with the Beautycounter results and opportunity to share them with my clients and blog readers!


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Is your fro-yo causing your breakouts?!

So nowadays frozen yogurt is all the rage…with the plethora of self-serve yogurt sundae bars on every corner, this can be one snack that is hard to resist. However, could your favorite frozen treat be causing your cystic, rather uncomfortable pimples on your chin or jawline?

I have long believed and taught my clients that cystic acne around the jawline could be linked to dairy consumption. For whatever reason, even Organic dairy products seem to exacerbate oiliness and acne in those with problem skin types. This can be frustrating. In order to find out, I highly recommend passing on the dairy–all of it, from milk to cheese to yogurt, for at least 2-3 weeks. See if you don’t get by with no new blemishes or pimples.

Slowly incorporate 1,2, 3 servings a day if you must after those 2-3 weeks and pay attention to any increase in oiliness or blemishes. You can start to determine your tolerance. You may find that you can eat very little dairy or you may find that your body is more zero tolerance.

The great news is that there are a variety of alternatives to dairy. Personally, I love unsweetened almond milk for cooking, baking and occasionally for drinking and if I’m really the mood for ice cream, I may splurge on the overpriced Coconut milk-based variety. Dairy creates excess mucous in our bodies and without going into the gross details, suffice it to say that it doesn’t do your body very much good as the slogan implies.

Major bonus: cutting out the yogurt, pizza and queso will do wonders for your body come swimsuit season as well, so it’s really a win-win situation! Healthy skin is happy skin!

Almond-Crusted Tilapia with Quinoa & Veggies

Almond-Crusted Tilapia with Quinoa and Roasted Veggies

By Emilie Spruill

Wheat Belly by Dr William Davis

Wheat Belly by Dr William Davis

My husband recently read the book, Wheat Belly, written by a Cardiologist, Dr William Davis. The book uses the example of the stay-at-home mom who never drinks beer—where does her “beer belly” or “pooch” come from? He suggests that it’s actually a bagel belly or English muffin belly, and he goes on to discuss various medical issues that can be linked to Gluten, and as a result, we have cut back significantly on the wheat in our diet. Keep in mind that we are two bread-loving individuals, so this took some sacrifice, but I have learned that we can still have fantastic and flavorful meals without the gluten. Here is one of our absolute favorites: Almond-Crusted Tilapia with Quinoa and Roasted Veggies.

Protein-rich and Flavorful Almond Crusted Tilapia

Protein-rich and Flavorful Almond Crusted Tilapia

This meal is super easy to prepare and very delicious to eat! Start to finish, you can whip this up in less than 30 minutes if you follow these simple steps!

First, preheat your oven to 375 degrees F. Prepare two glass baking dishes by lining them with Parchment paper for ultra easy cleanup. Boil water for quinoa. For 2-3 people, I tend to make 1.5 cups of quinoa and I typically have leftover, which I add to my salads! The simple rule of thumb is to double the water or veggie broth, so to make 1.5 cups of quinoa, boil 3 cups of water or veggie broth. When it reaches a boil, add the quinoa, plus a little minced garlic and your choice of seasonings from dried basil to diced celery, reduce to a simmer over low heat and cover for 15-18 minutes or until the liquid is absorbed.

While the water is coming to a boil, slice your zucchini and squash, or perhaps you prefer asparagus. I like to pre-slice my veggies on Sunday so it’s even faster during the week. Lightly brush with Extra Virgin Olive Oil or Coconut Oil, and dust with Sea Salt and Cracked Black Pepper. Pop those in the oven and let them roast for 30 minutes. Set the timer.

Take about a half a cup of raw, unsalted almonds and pulse in your food processor—I use my ever-so-handy Kitchen Ninja Pro!

Now, on a clean surface, carefully unwrap your fresh tilapia and prepare 1 filet per person. Lightly brush the tilapia with EVOO, dust with Sea Salt and Cracked Black Pepper and coat with ground almonds. Only grind them to small pieces instead of a powder if you like a crunchy texture—it is really good this way! Think of the almond pieces as your “breading” and the baking as your “frying”. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes or so in your parchment-paper lined Baking Dish. For a lovely touch, finish by broiling the fish for just a minute or so, but stand by because this will brown the surface quickly if you aren’t paying attention! The result is moist but well-cooked fish with the perfect texture.

Plate the Tilapia, Quinoa and Veggies and prepare to indulge in one of the healthiest, most nourishing meals that you’ve had in some time. This meal at a fine restaurant would cost you many times the cost and it would likely pack on many times the fat and calories, so you are saving money and you’re eating healthy all at the same time. This is a sure-to-please recipe, especially for someone who doesn’t think that they like fish—the flavor is mild but delicious and will earn you applause without a doubt.

Baby Bella Salad!

I have perfected the art of making salads at home–almost to the degree that I am often disappointed when I order a salad at a restaurant! Since moving to TX six years ago, I met plenty of guys who were just plain offended when they learned that I am a nearly life-long vegetarian (technically pescetarian). It reminds me of a quote that I once saw Texas-born Dan Rather make on a late night talk show interview, “Salad is what food eats!” One of the things that is most pleasing to me about my sweet husband is that he is a born and raised Texan and has the sexy drawl to prove it, but he actually respects, embraces and drives my healthy eating lifestyle. This is one of our favorite salads and since the addition last week of baby bella slices, he has repeatedly requested it for dinner! His ten-year old mini even ate it up this evening!

Your new favorite salad!

Your new favorite salad!

Side note: making salads at home rather than eating out is such a great idea because it’s the perfect way to portion control so that your healthy meal doesn’t turn into a diet sabotage before you can say “dressing on the side”. You can add on fun and delicious accoutrements like feta, walnuts or dried cranberries in moderation so that your salad actually benefits your swimsuit goals instead of destroying them like some restaurant salads can! Don’t be fooled into thinking that restaurant salads are always healthy choices–one of my formerly favorite salads was from T.G.I. Fridays and packed on 1360 calories–more than are in a Whopper!!!

Here’s your simple instructions and I encourage you to be creative with your add-ons!

~First, I thoroughly wash and slice Baby Portabella Mushrooms. I saute them on medium in a non-stick skillet with some EVOO or EV Coconut Oil (just a bit), light Sea Salt & Cracked Black Pepper. Use a wooden spoon to toss periodically.
~While the shrooms are sauteing, I add Organic Spring Greens (I alternate between the Organic Red Leaf Lettuce and the pre-washed containers of Organic Spring Greens or Baby Spinach if I’m feeling a bit lazy).
~Chop your veggies and add them to the greens: Ideas include Yellow Bell Pepper (or Orange if you prefer), Cucumber, and four Cherry or Grape tomatoes (no chopping required).
~Add the fun stuff! Tonight I used just a few crumbles of Organic Feta, a few Dried Cranberries, a dusting of Organic Sunflower Seeds, a dozen or so Pecans (walnuts also work great) and a few slices of Avocado for some healthy fats and Skin-loving Omegas!
~Finally, the mushrooms are done when they begin to look cooked rather than raw–pretty simple!
~My favorite finishing touch is a few pieces of fruit–choose from Strawberry Slices, Blueberries or Mandarin slices!

Now for the dressing–I suggest a Balsamic Vinagrette, but be sure that whatever you are choosing contains NO MSG (most commercial ranch dressings do unless you choose Organic), and is not too high in sugar. I lightly drizzle but to be honest, this salad is so delicious, you just might find yourself skipping the dressing and using those calories on some dark chocolate later! It really is that good!

Enjoy your new favorite salad! Buon appetite!