Monday, July 30, 2012


We’re still beaming from the afterglow of Wanderlust.

We returned home yesterday, after spending two days in one-on-one nutrition consultations with the attendees at the California festival who were there to practice yoga, enjoy great music and revel in the incredible beauty and serenity of the California mountains rising around Lake Tahoe.

It was the last of the three Wanderlust festivals we attended on behalf of LUNA, working with the incredible LUNA team to promote the power of positive snacking, helping to keep women (and a few men!) on their power curve. 

All of the Wanderlust events were equally amazing--we were also in Vermont and Colorado.

When we first launched NourishRDs—almost exactly one year ago!—we made a conscious decision to be thoughtful and intentional about the companies and products with which we align ourselves.  LUNA was the first company we called. 

LUNA bars are all made from organic and wholesome real ingredients—we can pronounce every single item on the ingredient list and understand where it comes from.  The company does not promote the LUNA bars—designed specifically for women—as meal replacement bars, but as a healthy snack and convenient treat to help keep your energy up and your mind focused as you’re running throughout your day.  It’s not a diet bar.

Plus, the LUNA team is made up of fun and inspiring women.  We like them a lot.  What’s not to like?

At the Wanderlust festivals, we met with attendees one-on-one for 20 minute nutrition consultations.  We got lots of questions about gluten-free diets and how to transition to or maintain a vegetarian or vegan lifestyle.  But most of all, we got questions about sugar cravings and how to avoid the mid-afternoon crash that often leaves us cranky and with a glazed look in our eyes, headed for the coffee or snack machine. 

This is what we told them:  Nourishing your body throughout the day is important.  Skipping meals always backfires.  You think you’re “saving up” for a great dinner, and then you overeat—usually because you’re famished.  Eating small, regularly-spaced meals and snacks throughout the day helps to maintain your power curve, prevents brain fog, or worse—irritability and grumpiness—and gives you plenty of energy to keep up with your kids on the playground, complete your work project in record time, or master that yoga pose you've been practicing.

Click here for our advice on healthy, balanced snacking.

Because women are so hard on themselves, and always trying to live up to an unrealistic expectation of perfection, we also got a lot of questions about guilt and shame around eating, food and snacking.  Here’s our advice.

It’s time for us to…

-     put aside unrealistic expectations of beauty.

-     stop dwelling on the number on the scale or the size of our clothes and start embracing our own unique bodies and individuality.

-     choose to engage in activities we enjoy because it helps us feel good—not because we think we have to log a certain number of minutes on the treadmill or trail.

-     fuel our bodies with good quality nutrition—that fulfills our cravings—so we can live our fullest and best lives.

-     treat ourselves with the love and respect we deserve.

That powerful message resonated with the women—and the men!—we met with in our sessions.  We helped them to come up with a daily affirmation for themselves, a mantra to help them look at themselves in the mirror each morning and before bedtime to say, “I am beautiful and strong, just the way I am.”

A few of our new friends agreed to share their daily affirmations with others.  Like, "I will stay on the course that makes me happy." 

Or this one.

Or this one.

Or this one.

At the end of the day, after speaking with dozens of inspiring women (and a few men!), we went back to the LUNA house and practiced what we preached--creating balance in our life by enjoying good food and lots of laughter with our new friends.

combining our love of all great things -- pizza, yoga & each other!

We would like to thank the team members at ALL of the Wanderlust events for making us feel like a part of the LUNA family.  You are each inspiring.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Raspberry Chia Overnight Oats

Oats are pretty much a dietitian’s dream food. The soluble fiber found in whole grains, such as oats, can help with blood sugar control – that is, soluble fiber helps to prevent you from getting one of those short-lived bursts of energy (that's often the result when we eat refined carbohydrates) followed by that immediate and miserable crash.

I love overnight oats for so many reasons. They taste ah-mazing, they're fun to make, and they're so nutritious, too. And the best part? Overnight oats are a perfect on-the-go breakfast. Just set aside 5 minutes the night before, and the next morning, you'll have a healthy, balanced breakfast at your fingertips. You can easily eat it when you’re in class, on the bus, checking emails at your desk, on a hike, or sitting in the sunshine.  

Overnight oats are simply oats that are soaked overnight to absorb whatever liquid you choose to put them in.

The basic formula is to combine equal parts oats to liquid, such as 1/3 cup oats with 1/3 cup milk or a milk alternative. We also like to stir in a heaping spoonful of Greek yogurt for an added dose of protein.

Recipes for overnight oats are floating all over Pinterest, but we’ve found the best recipe is one where you experiment with flavors you love. After experimenting a little bit, here is our go-to recipe:

Raspberry Chia Overnight Oats


1/3 cup oats
1/3 cup milk or milk alternative (You may also want to add a little bit more liquid depending on how thick you like it.)
Heaping spoonful of nonfat plain Greek yogurt (For those of you that like precise measurements, it’s about ¼ cup)
½ tablespoon ground flaxseeds or chia seeds
½ teaspoon vanilla
Pinch of cinnamon
1 cup frozen berries
1-2 tablespoons slivered almonds


  1. Stir all ingredients together and place in a mason jar (but, any container will do!) in the fridge overnight. 
  2. Grab a spoon, and go! 
    Note: You don't necessarily have to use frozen berries and almonds. The best part of all is being able to experiment with the toppings. 

    Some other topping ideas include:
    Fresh fruit, such as sliced bananas or sliced apples.
    Dried fruit, such as raisins or dried tart cherries.
    Nuts, such as pecans, walnuts, or pistachios.
    Seeds, such as sunflower seeds or pumpkin seeds.
    Sweeteners, such as flaked coconut, a little honey or maple syrup.
    Granola, such as our Nourishing Granola. You can watch us talk about how much we love making our granola in this video, here.

Enjoy, preferably with those you love.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

4th of July & The Best Veggie Burgers

Happy 4th of July (and happy belated Canada Day) everyone!

This is the time of year when barbeque season is in full swing. It’s such a fun way to bring people together and share delicious food in the company of those you love.
While summertime barbeques are most often associated with hot dogs and hamburgers, the grill can also be used to make a variety of mouth-watering chicken or fish dishes. The trick is all in the marinade, as we mention in this recently published article on Healthy Grilling. Don’t forget about grilling fruits or veggies either. Grilled veggies make for the ideal side dish, and grilled fruit can make for the perfect dessert. If grilling fruit isn’t your thing, simply take advantage of the bounty of delicious fruits in season. No dessert looks more festive or is kinder to your body than a fruit salad.

A fruit salad from a friend's barbeque I went to last weekend.
All berries from the Santa Barbara farmer's market!

And while Lisa and I love the occasional burger when hosting a football party – yes, we’ve done this before (as in, hosted a football party) and we have no idea who played or won – we are aware that Americans tend to eat too much meat. The typical intake is actually about eight ounces a day, twice the world average.
As we’ve mentioned before, we believe in the golden nutrition rule: everything in moderation.

In fact, as an early birthday gift to myself, I pre-ordered Sharon Palmer’s upcoming book,The Plant Powered Diet. It's based on the hundreds of studies that draw us to the conclusion that a plant-based diet is in fact the healthiest. It also includes 75 original recipes which I absolutely can not wait to try.

Until the book arrives in the mail and I have chance to try those recipes, I thought I would share a veggie burger recipe that I recently made. Finding the perfect veggie burger is not an easy feat. I know because I even had to add “find the recipe for the perfect veggie burger” to my Summertime Bucket List – but this one, allowed me to cross that off the list! This recipe is a little bit labor intensive, but it's well worth it.

Best Veggie Burgers

½ cup brown lentils
½ cup barley
½ cup brown rice
2 tablespoons canola oil  
1 1/3 c carrots
¾ cup minced onion
¾  cup minced celery
2T sunflower seeds, toasted or dry roasted
1 teaspoon oregano
1 ½ teaspoon salt
Pepper to taste
1 teaspoon minced thyme
1 tablespoon dried basil
1 ½ minced garlic
2 large eggs
½ c flour
1 tablespoon canola oil

Day before serving:  Bring 4 cups water to a simmer. Add lentils, cover and simmer 15 minutes. Add barley, cover, and simmer another 15 minutes. Add brown rice, simmer 20 minutes or until water is absorbed and rice is cooked. Saute carrots, onion and celery in canola oil until tender, approximately 10 minutes. Add sunflower seeds, oregano, salt, pepper, thyme, basil and garlic, and sauté 1 – 2 minutes more. Combine grains and vegetables and refrigerate overnight.
Day of serving: Add eggs and flour to grain mixture and mix well. Form balls 3 – 4 inches, and flatten to ¾ inch thick. Fry 3 – 4 minutes per side in canola oil.

Enjoy, preferably with those you love.