Indulge this Thanksgiving

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Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!  This year I am thankful for my husband, family, friends, and my health!  To stay healthy, I believe it has something to do with the foods I consume on a daily basis, and the fact that I do not deprive myself of foods that my body may be craving and foods that I do not eat on a daily, or even monthly basis.

With this being one of the most feast-ly holidays for people, I want to share some of my go-to tips to have a healthy, yet satisfying Thanksgiving this year.

~When cooking or baking, try using some of these substitutes to keep your foods healthier~

– Plain Greek Yogurt for Sour Cream-  More protein, not as much fat and same consistency!

Veganaise for Mayonaise- You will get pretty much the same flavor but because it is not made with eggs, you will be consuming less cholesterol.

– Coconut oil for butter- coconut oil is just overall great for everything! It may even aid in weight loss.  Find out more next week when I write about the benefits of Coconut Oil!

– If you still want a buttery taste, or using it for something like an apple crisp, try Earth Balance– which is lactose free, gluten free, and a vegan choice.

Coconut Sugar instead of regular sugar or brown sugar-  You won’t be consuming the same amount glucose and fructose as you do with the white and brown sugars and it is natural.     Keep in mind, brown sugar is just as bad as white sugar! (You can also use Agave or Honey)

– Organic Apple Sauce instead of eggs when baking-  Three tablespoons of apples sauce for one egg.  It will help bind whatever it is you’re baking and you will not have the cholesterol from the eggs and it keeps the recipe moist.  Make sure whatever applesauce you are using is organic and you read the ingredients, because many companies sneak things in that you do not want in your body.

– Almond milk in place of regular milk- however, start off with a little less than recipe calls for since Almond Milk can be a little more watery than regular milk.

– Rice Pasta instead of regular pasta- Who needs all that gluten and wheat? Can we say tummy ache and lethargic afterwards?!

These are just some substitutions to start with.  Most people can not even taste a different when switching ingredients around, however when doing this, you do need to go in with an open mind because some things do not taste as heavy or thick as you may be use to.  And don’t tell people, I promise you will still get a great reaction to whatever it is you make, and people will not even know they are eating something so much healthier!!

Now I know you won’t be cooking everything, so when it comes time to eat, be conscious of what your putting in your body.  Start with a salad, and always make sure to have 75% vegetables and 25% of everything else on your plate.  And when it comes time for dessert, I am all for it, but be aware of what you are eating.  Take small bites. Chew slowly. Savor the flavor. And be done with it.  No need to eat three different pieces of of pie, maybe three bites of the three pies you want to taste and call it a day! You do not want to leave with your stomach bulging out of your pants!

When using healthier alternatives and paying attention to what you are eating,  your body will notice the difference and thank you for it!  So not only will your waist be thankful this Thanksgiving for eating more consciously, so will your insides! 

Have a safe, happy, healthy, and warm holiday!

Happy Thanksgiving!!

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Guilt free and allergy friendly Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

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I had way too many bananas this week in the house, and before I knew it, they were over-ripe and I was not going to use them.  You know the one’s I am talking about.  Too mushy to eat, too old to freeze, yet you’re not ready to toss them yet!  Perfect thing for bananas that fall into this category?  Banana bread!  I absolutely love it!

It is a bread that is healthy enough for breakfast- by itself, or toasted with butter/peanut butter, and it is sweet enough for all those dessert loving people, like myself.

It is easy to make, not a lot of ingredients, and takes about an hour to prepare and bake!

You can enjoy this guilt free as it is gluten free, dairy free, egg free and the chocolate chips are allergy friendly being that they are dairy free, soy free and nut free!

Ingredients-
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3-4 over ripe bananas
**1/3 Cup Organic Coconut Oil- melted
**3/4 Cup Organic Coconut Sugar
3 Tablespoons Organic Applesauce- make sure to always read ingredients when choosing an applesauce because many brands add ingredients you do not want to put in your body!
1 Teaspoon Baking Soda
1 Teaspoon Organic Vanilla
1.5 cups Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free All Purpose Flour
*.5-1 Cup Enjoy Life allergy friendly chocolate chips
*.5 Cup walnuts

*Optional

**If you can not use

-coconut oil replace it with Applesauce or Earth Balance Vegan friendly buttery spread

– coconut sugar, you can use organic Agave, Local Honey, or other sweetener of your choice

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix oil into mashed bananas with a wooden spoon. Add in sugar, applesauce, vanilla. Mix until blended. Add baking soda and continue mixing. Slowly, add flour. Mix until everything is blended together. Stir in chocolate chips and walnuts if using. Pour into 4×8 loaf pan and bake for 30-45 minutes- Stick tooth pick in at around 30 minutes to see if baked through. If not, continue baking for additional 10-15 minutes- or until inserted toothpick comes out clean.
Let cool and enjoy!

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When you take the time to make your own foods, you know exactly what is going in your body, and for that your body will thank you!! Remember to always eat for you body!

Stay warm and healthy!