I have been making muffins frequently for a few months now. I certainly need to change it up soon. I was short on time a few weeks ago so I decided to experiment. I used a Simple Mills pumpkin muffin mixl, organic pumpkin puree and Vital Proteins collagen peptides for additional protein and created these mini and full sized pumpkin muffins. I followed the recipe on the box, added some pumpkin puree and scattered in the protein. No recipe really. I am officially in need of a new snack that I can take on the go!! These are gluten free, grain free, refined sugar free and were tasty!
On my quest for gut healing I began to learn more about the contents of personal care products and how they can impact the human body. I was especially aware of how often functional medicine practitioners and social media influencers were discussing the role of toxins in personal care products and autoimmune disease. Since my Ulcerative Colitis diagnosis puts me in the autoimmune disease category I became increasingly interested in learning about clean beauty. Clean beauty is really more than beauty to me. It is about what we put on and in our bodies and how the contents of those items impact our hormones and bodily functions. This isn't just about make-up and skincare. For me I think of this as an all encompassing clean movement. I consider aluminum free deodorant to be a part of my clean beauty regimen along with chlorine and bleach free tampons. Tampons don't come to mind when I think of beauty but I tend to lump all of that together. If you are concerned with what is in your food and tampons why not what you lather on your largest organ (your skin)?
After learning more about the brand Beautycounter and their mission to create safer products for everyone along with their B corporation status, leaping bunny certification, legislative lobbying for tougher regulations and research efforts in conjunction with academic medical centers I became a consultant. So now I share what Beautycounter stands for so others can learn more about the clean beauty movement, just like I did. If you are interested in trying out some Beautycounter products you can shop my site at the link below!
I am always trying my best to stay hydrated. I have been adding fresh squeezed lemon juice to my water at least once a day to add some additional detoxifying properties to my hydration. If I do not stay very hydrated my body will tell me with a headache or a general feeling of "yuck." It can be hard when busy to remain in the hydrated zone but I can only do my best! Even when drinking water all day long I can still feel exhausted and question how much water I drank in a day! If I have to urinate a lot in a day I tend to consider my hydrating technique to be a good one!
When you read labels do you look at the nutrition facts or the ingredient list? We are trained to look at the nutrition facts and check things like calories, carbs, sugar and protein contents. Now, I skip right to the ingredient list. If I have no idea what something is or if it is a combination of numbers and letters and abbreviations then I probably don't want to eat that because well...what is it that I am eating? It is a mystery. I became quite good at reading ingredient lists when I went on the LOW FODMAP diet which turned into a PALEO diet which led to a SIBO diet that consisted of a combination of (SCD-specific carbohydrate diet and Low FODMAP). I basically ate the same few things and I was super limited.
What those experiences really taught me was how to read and understand packaged food labels and ingredients. A great rule of thumb is that if you don't know what it is...don't eat it. If you can't pronounce it...don't eat it. Look for items with a few ingredients as possible and ones that you recognize. For example: chicken, pure maple syrup, sea salt.
Life gets busy and eating clean can be challenging when you are on the run so just do what you can and don't beat yourself up or obsess over anything. That will just lead to stress which is detrimental to our health.
I love muffins! I have been experimenting with various paleo muffin recipes for several months and I get really excited when they come out the way I want! Below I am showing two different batches of pumpkin chocolate chunk muffins. One is made with Simple Mills pumpkin muffin mix and Vital Proteins collagen protein and the other is from a paleo blog I recently started following. The recipe for the darker muffins can be found here.
Here is the Simple Mills and Vital Proteins Recipe
1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
1/4 cup pumpkin puree
3 tbsp coconut oil (melted)
1 box Simple Mills Pumpkin Muffin Mix
2 tbsp collegen peptides
1/2 cup dark chocolate chopped (I use Enjoy Life Chocolate Chunks)
1/4 cup almond butter
1 tsp cinnamon
Mix it all together and cook on 350 degrees until a toothpick comes out clean. Enjoy these protein packed muffins!
When I don't have much time or am eating on the go I make some fresh green beans and Applegate Organics Apple and Chicken Sausages. This is a fast, easy and gut friendly meal that I can eat while getting ready or can take on the go. I cut up the sausages and sauté them in a small fry pan with medium heat. I like them a little crispy myself.
I love these sausages they are gluten free, dairy free and Whole30 approved. They are high in sodium so I try not to eat them too often but when I am in short on time I keep them around for easy healthy meals.
I also add ghee and cracked sea salt to my veggies but certainly not needed on the meat. I try to buy several of these when I find a sale and keep in the freezer!