What's The Best New Mom Diet?

Keto? Vegan? Intermittent Fasting? Low carb? Low fat? The differing diet options out there are enough to make your head spin and can have you questioning every bite you take. Throw in being a new mom and figuring out what to eat can be downright overwhelming.

To get some simple practical nutritional strategies to help support your health and wellbeing, head over to Toronto New Mom’s blog to read more!

Top Kitchen Hacks for Busy Parents

Parents are BUSY. Being a parent takes a lot and sometimes what used to work for us before having children just doesn’t cut it post kids when our time is stretched thin.

Meal prep and cooking is one such area where it may help to have some new routines and hacks in place to make life simpler.  Most of us want to eat healthy…we know it’s important and frankly we likely feel better when we are eating whole foods and not licking frosting from a can (we’ve all been there ;)  However, some days preparing a meal can seem downright daunting and as fatigue sets in, the options dwindle from home cooked meal to take out to a bowl of cereal or cold toast eaten after the kids are in bed. I totally get it!  The days of being able to whip up a full meal from scratch at 6pm may be gone for awhile and planning ahead and meal prep will be your new way of life.  I promise- having a plan and doing some prep work makes mealtime much more enjoyable!

Here are some of my fave top meal prep hacks to save you time and keep you organized:

1) Batch Cook.  If I am turning my oven on I am going to make it work!  Throw in some chicken, vegetables, chickpeas...whatever will fit and make multiple meals in one go.  Just check cooking times so nothing burns!

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2) 2 words: Smoothie. Bags. If you're a fan of smoothies then you have to try out this time saving hack. Try pre making your smoothies in advance and then freezing until you want to use them.  I make a whole week’s worth of smoothies at one time by adding all the dry ingredients (everything except for liquid base) into a freezer bag and then when I want a smoothie I just pop the ingredients out of the bag and into the blender with the liquid.  Super simple and a complete game changer! (Note: You can also use mason jars or you can re-use your bags- as long as they didn't contain nut butter :)

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3) Quick Snacks are where it's at (I'm looking at you energy balls, chia pudding and hard boiled eggs). Have quick, easy snacks on hand so you can avoid that hangry feeling you get when you haven't eaten in awhile. This will also buy you some time so you can get a healthy meal together.

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4) Prep Ingredients Right Away. When I get back from the grocery store I start my prep before I even put my food away.  

  • I wash and cut up vegetables to be eaten alone with hummus or added to a salad or stir fry.  
  • I wash/cut up certain fruits that stay fresh in the fridge. Peel, chop and freeze bananas to have on hand for smoothies or banana ice cream.
  • I hard boil some eggs.
  • Make smoothie bags.
  • Make a quick chia pudding or some energy balls (Both SUPER fast recipes)
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5) Take some help from the store. Pre cut veggies, rotisserie chicken, bagged salads, prepared meats ready for the grill or quick cook grains.  Give yourself some help and try some store shortcuts!

What are your best time saving kitchen hacks? Let me know!

 

My Favourite Recipes To Boost Your Energy

Ever eat something and feel sluggish, bloated and like you need a nap STAT.  Food can have a negative effect on our energy levels, however fortunately it can also have a positive effect and can make us feel lighter, satisfied and more energetic.

Here are some of my favourite recipes that give me that boost of energy I need, keep my blood sugar stable, mood elevated and body feeling great. Bonus: these recipes can be made in advance and come together super fast.

Medjool Date with Peanut Butter.  This is one of those recipes (if it can even be called that....it really is just a scoop of peanut butter on a date!) that are great when you have nothing else prepped and just need some quick energy that won't leave your blood sugar out of whack.  The date has a sweet caramel flavour and is loaded with fibre and packed with minerals and vitamins.  The addition of peanut (or other nut) butter helps to bulk out the snack with the staying power of fat and protein. Seriously try this; so good!

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Muffins. I love a good muffin recipe that satisfies my sweet tooth and feels indulgent but that actually includes ingredients healthy enough that I could eat it for breakfast. I have many wonderful muffin recipes but one of my go tos would have to be my carrot oat banana bread muffins...chock full of veggies, oats, healthy fats from flax and chia, sweetness from some banana and raisins and topped off with a pinch of cinnamon, these muffins do not disappoint and are a perfect on the go snack.

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Smoothies. No denying it...I love smoothies and have them almost every day.  See my kitchen hack for how I make my smoothies in advance! The beauty of a smoothie is that they come together quickly, taste great and can be jam packed full of amazing nutritious foods.  Avocados, spinach, berries, collagen protein, hemp seeds, spices, nut butters...the list goes on.  Pretty much anything is fair game in my smoothies :) If I had to pick a favourite I would go with my classic cherry chocolate smoothie.  Frozen cherries, banana, spinach and avocado form the base.  Just add some almond milk or water, a splash of vanilla, spoon of cocoa powder and a pinch of cinnamon and you are in smoothie bliss!

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Meatballs. I love these meatballs since it is easy to double or triple the recipe, they freeze well, can be eaten alone (I often just microwave 2 or 3 of them from the freezer as a quick snack!) or added to a sauce and topped over pasta. They are packed with veggies and are a real crowd pleaser.  Make a bunch and freeze them so you always have something quick, delicious and filling to eat in a pinch. Instant energy!

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Chilli. For me nothing tops a great chilli on a cold day.  Use what ingredients you have on hand and it will come together so quickly and be super satisfying.  My version always has canned tomatoes, frozen corn, black beans, carrot, celery, onion, garlic, red pepper and ground beef all enhanced by salt to taste, a generous amount of chilli powder and cumin. Top with yogurt, avocado or parsley and you are set. And if you're really feeling decadent serve alongside my zucchini corn bread muffins. Enjoy!!

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