Checkout an oldie, but goodie! A little Nutrition contributing to InTouch Magazine about Kourtney Kardashian’s weight!
Check out the shout out we received in the August issue of Focus Magazine on Newsstands now! Thanks Danielle for including us in “A Healthy Weekend in LA” 🙂
Are you looking to have a day to RE-CHARGE, RE-ENERGIZE, and RE-BOOT your MIND, BODY, and SPIRIT? Then join us for a day of YOGA, MEDITATION, NUTRITION, GOAL SETTING, & HIKING right here in LA! Checkout details below! Feel free to email me with any questions: firstname.lastname@example.org
Spots are going FAST, so reserve your spot today at: http://www.cucciosomatology.com/#!retreats/chkl
WHEN: Saturday, August 2nd: 10am – 3pm
WHERE: Beautiful Private Home in Brentwood
WHAT: Join us for Yoga, Nutrition Lecture/Vegetarian Lunch, Mindfulness Meditation Speaker, Goody Bags, Meeting New Friends & More!
WHO: Yoga Instructors Danielle Cuccio & Kaleigh Walker
COST: $97 (Early Bird Price by July 1st)
BURNTHIS is a really cool fitness app that allows you to stay up-to-date on the HOTTEST fitness studios in your area! You can book on the go & see where your friends are burning all through this one app. I was recently featured as a “SWEAT ON THE STREET” instructor, so check out my profile below! I was also selected to be an LA AMBASSADOR, reviewing all the top fitness studios to be featured on the BURNTHIS app….so stay tuned for my upcoming reviews!
Yoga Instructor at Maha Yoga & Corepower Yoga, Personal Trainer, Nutrition Coach, Dance Teacher, Fitness & Nutrition Writer
Los Angeles, CA
work hard/play hard, class junkie, yogi, do gooder
My Everyday Mantra:
We only have one body. If we don’t take care of it each and every day, where else are we going to live?
My BurnThis Moment:
When I decided to quit my corporate job in 2009 to teach yoga and become a personal trainer full-time. It required a lot of guts, perseverance, dedication, and long hours! But the hard work has paid off tenfold. Each day I get to share my passion with others and motivate them to attain happiness, health, and peace of mind. I can honestly say I’ve found my purpose!
Best Fit Tip:
I always find it easier to exercise when I actually like the workout! There’s something for everyone and there’s no one right way to stay healthy, so find something that you love and enjoy doing! Dance, walk, hike, run, bike, jump, stretch…just stay active, sweat, and get your heart pumping every day! Oh, and eat a lot of fruits and veggies!
Find Me Burning At:
Corepower Yoga & Maha Yoga as well as YogaHop, Moore Dancing & the Santa Monica Stairs
In My Gym Bag:
Nalgene Water Bottle, Towel, Lululemon Yoga Mat, Deodorant, Wyndmere Essential Oils, iPod, Cinnamon Gum, Murad Face Wash, Coconut Oil, Bliss SPF Face Lotion, Extra Hair Ties, Lip Gloss, Lara Bar, Almonds.
Favorite Local Post-Burn Treat:
Pressed Juicery Greens 3 or Alkalizer.
How many times have you heard someone say, “The flu is going around!” or “I just caught the cold my husband had!” I remember when the dreaded “cold season” used to be mainly in the fall and winter months, but now it seems like anytime of the year I know someone who is under the weather. But did you know that it’s NOT inevitable to get sick every time you’re exposed to someone who is? I’ve only had two “colds” in the past five years and I’ve worked in some of the most germ-infested places including heated yoga studios, gyms, preschools, daycare’s and a homeless shelter. How is that possible? Because each and every day I make it a point to build up a healthy immune system. It’s only when I neglect these important steps that I get sick.
Probiotics: Did you know that the majority of our immune system resides in our gut? If you have an unhealthy amount of “bad” bacteria residing in your intestines you are more likely to get sick. Unfortunately, when we consume antibiotics, prescription medications, are exposed to heavy metals or just have a diet filled with processed food, our intestinal flora is compromised. In order to restore a healthy balance of “good” bacteria, it’s important to take a daily probiotic supplement that contains several different strains of bacteria. I currently take Ultimate Flora Adult Probiotic. This brand has a lot of different options depending on the severity of your intestinal tract and even has gummy probiotics for kids!
Sleep: Having an erratic sleep schedule will not only leave you grumpy and groggy, it can lead to more colds, flus and illnesses. When you don’t get adequate shut eye, your body’s ability to respond and fight off foreign invaders is compromised. Studies have shown that people who get an average of seven hours of sleep each night not only have better immune systems, they actually live longer! Some tips for getting sufficient sleep include going to bed/waking up at the same time each day, not using electronics right before bed, avoiding alcohol within six hours of bedtime, meditation and/or stretching before you hit the sheets, reducing stress in your life, and exercise!
Plant-Based Foods: As Hippocrates said thousands of years ago, “Let food be thy medicine, and medicine be thy food.” There’s no better way to get the proper vitamins, minerals, nutrients and antioxidants you need to ward off illness than through what you put into your mouth each and every day. I truly believe that the fresh greens juice with apple, lemon and ginger that I have for breakfast every morning has helped build my immune system and energy levels tremendously. I continue to eat a vast array of fruits and veggies throughout the rest of my day because that’s what my body needs to perform at its best. Some of the best immune-boosting foods and spices include: ginger, oranges, oats, barley, garlic, mushrooms, papaya, sweet potatoes, butternut squash, tomatoes, broccoli, kale, spinach, Brussels sprouts, berries, bell peppers, thyme, rosemary and sage, to name a few.
Avoid Hormone-Laden Meat: Large meat and dairy companies are looking to create the largest profit possible in the shortest amount of time. They inject antibiotics and hormones into cows, chickens and pigs to make them grow faster and bigger, and to prevent the spread of disease. Unfortunately, if you are not actively seeking out grass-fed or hormone-free animal products, you are not only advocating inhumane living conditions for these animals and promoting global warming, you are consuming some amount of antibiotics, hormones and resistant bacteria each time you eat them. Not only will your immune system be compromised with the exposure to unnecessary antibiotics and bacteria, you too will grow FASTER and BIGGER just like the animals! New studies have shown being overweight or obese can affect the body’s ability to produce white blood cells and antibodies to fight off illness and inflammation. As you can see, it’s a scary cycle! If you are going to consume animal products, I encourage you to buy directly from a local farmer or Farmer’s Market, or look for labels that include organic, hormone-free, grass-fed, and free-range.
Exercise: During moderate exercise, blood flow increases and you start to sweat out the toxic waste from your body! The improved blood flow also promotes circulation of antibodies and white blood cells to help ward off infection and disease. Plus, you feel and look better, right?! So start walking, running, dancing, spinning, boxing or down-dogging every day.
Vitamin Supplements: It can be hard to get all of the nutrients from your food, especially if it’s not organic and because the quality of our earth’s soil is not like it used to be. In addition to following all of the steps above, I encourage incorporating a vitamin and mineral supplement into your diet to boost your immunity. (Remember it’s a SUPPLEMENT not a replacement for fruits and veggies!) The most important antioxidants to look for are: Beta-carotene, Vitamin A, C, & E, B Vitamins (B6 & B12 in particular), Zinc and Selenium. I take Dr. Schulze’s SuperFood Plus!
I guarantee, these easy steps will lead you to a happier, healthier life! Remember, we only have one body…if we don’t take care of it, where else are we going to live?
We’ve all heard the word “ORGANIC” but is it really necessary to buy only organic fruits & veggies? According to the Environmental Working Group (EWG) there are 12 produce items you should DEFINITELY buy organic whenever possible. For the past decade, the EWG has released a list called the “Dirty Dozen,” 12 fruits & veggies that contain the highest amount of pesticides. Pesticides have been linked to developmental problems in children, and may act as carcinogens or throw off the endocrine system, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. They are also linked to cancer, birth defects, infertility, and kidney failure. In order to avoid the risk of exposure, I suggest you read this year’s “Dirty Dozen” below:
7. Sweet Bell Peppers
8. Nectarins – Imported
10. Cherry Tomatoes
11. Snap Peas – Imported
The good part is, the EWG also releases a list of the “Clean 15.” This list includes the fruits & veggies with the least amount of pesticide residue, and have tested low for total pesticide concentration. Feel free to eat these in a “non-organic” state!
2. Sweet corn
5. Frozen sweet peas
15. Sweet potatoes
My schedule is quite erratic with clients and classes at all hours of the day. I’m especially busy in the evenings, so CONVENIENCE is key when it comes to making my dinners. But as most of you know, convenience doesn’t always mean healthy. So in order to follow a clean diet, I’ve got a list of easy-to-make, go-to salad dressings that I can use on any salad I throw together for a quick, nutritious meal. Why don’t I just use a bottled dressing that’s “low-fat” or “sugar-free” or “low-cal” you ask? Well have you looked at the ingredients in those pre-made dressings? There’s most likely a lot of words you can’t pronounce not to mention loaded with added table salt, sugar, preservatives, artificial colors and flavors (which can lead to ADHD in children) as well as unhealthy oils.
For example, here are the ingredients for Kraft’s “Fat Free Ranch” salad dressing:
Ingredients: WATER, CORN SYRUP, VINEGAR, HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP, WHEY (FROM MILK)*, SALT, MODIFIED FOOD STARCH, CONTAINS LESS THAN 2% OF GARLIC JUICE, ONION JUICE, SOYBEAN OIL*, XANTHAN GUM, POTASSIUM SORBATE AND CALCIUM DISODIUM EDTA AS PRESERVATIVES, ARTIFICIAL COLOR, PHOSPHORIC ACID, PROPYLENE GLYCOL ALGINATE, NATURAL FLAVOR, DRIED PARSLEY, DRIED GREEN ONIONS, DISODIUM GUANYLATE, DISODIUM INOSINATE, SPICE, CARAMEL COLOR, YELLOW 5. *TRIVIAL SOURCE OF FAT AND CHOLESTEROL. CONTAINS: MILK.
Hmmm…Disodium Guanylate and Yellow 5 sounds pretty yummy! Seriously, those pictures of bell peppers, tomatoes, and lettuce on the bottle are clever ploys to make you think it’s good for you! I guarantee when you try some of the recipes below, you will see how much more flavorful and fresh-tasting homemade dressings are. Little changes in your diet like this are what will keep you healthier, happier and slimmer for years to come!
Sweet Basil-Lime Dressing (Adapted from Kimberly Snyder’s “The Beauty Detox Solution”) YIELD: about 1/2 cup
This is great with Romaine or Red Leaf lettuce & loads of veggies! I seriously make this dressing at least 3 times a week! 🙂
DIRECTIONS: Blend the ingredients together until smooth and serve fresh.
Sherry Vinaigrette: (Adapted from Bon Appetit) YIELDS: About 3/4 Cup
My husband loves this on Arugula or a Mixed Greens salad. You can even pour it on some quinoa & chopped veggies!
DIRECTIONS: Place all ingredients in a jar or airtight container with a lid. Shake until combined. The dressing can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a week. To freshen the flavor of the dressing after a few days, add a squeeze of fresh lemon juice.
Classic Balsamic Vinaigrette: (Adapted from Epicurious) YIELDS: About 3/4 Cup
DIRECTIONS: Place all ingredients in a jar or airtight container with a lid. Shake until combined. The dressing can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a week.
Healthy Ranch Dressing: (Adapted from Mangia Blog) YIELDS: About 1.5 Cups
DIRECTIONS: Put all of the ingredients in a blender or food processor and process on high until smooth. If you would like it smoother, add a bit more water.
Happy Eating Everyone!
This past weekend me and fellow Yogi, Danielle Cuccio, hosted our first Yoga Retreat together in Santa Barbara. It was such an amazing weekend filled with inspiring people, good laughs and amazing food. We literally could not have planned for a better turnout! Check out some of the photos below and I will keep you updated on when and where our next Yoga Retreat will be 🙂
From time to time I like to indulge in some homemade granola. Check out my go-to, yummy recipe that always hits the spot! 🙂
- Coconut Oil Cooking Spray
- 4 cups old-fashioned oats (High in Fiber)
- 1/2 cup chopped almond slivers (Healthy fat to fight off heart disease & diabetes)
- 1/2 cup coarsely chopped walnuts (High in Antioxidants)
- 1/2 cup mixed dried berries & raisins (I like blueberries, cranberries, raisins & golden raisins)
- 1/2 cup coarsely chopped dried apricot (Dried fruits help regulate digestion)
- 1/2 cup sweetened shredded coconut
- Large handful of Flax Seeds (High in Omega-3 essential fatty acids)
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon (Helps lower bad cholesterol & arthritis pain)
- Pinch of Salt
- 1/3 cup coconut oil (Strengthens the immune system)
- 1/4 cup honey (Aids in controlling blood sugar levels)
- 1/2 cup light brown sugar
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees and lightly coat a large rimmed baking sheet.
- In a large bowl mix the oats, nuts, dried fruit, shredded coconut, flax seed, cinnamon & salt. Set aside.
- In a small saucepan, combine coconut oil, honey & brown sugar. Bring to a boil (usually takes about 3 min.) and remove from heat. Stir in vanilla extract.
- Drizzle the syrup over the oat mixture and toss with a wooden spoon.
- Pour the granola onto the baking sheet and spread evenly.
- Bake until golden (around 18min.) and stirring at least 3 times to prevent burning.
- Let granola cool completely on a wire rack.
- Break into chunks and store in an airtight container.
I always tend to “breakout” in the same areas of my face. I don’t believe in happenstance, so I decided to do a little research and came across a great resource called “Face Mapping.” Ancient Chinese medical practitioners believe that certain zones of the face represent certain internal areas of the body. When something has gone awry internally, it can often show up on your face in the form of acne (as well as wrinkles, dark circles, fine lines, etc!)
After reading some of the triggers in my zit-prone areas, I truly believe this is a great resource in helping prevent future breakouts! Checkout the “Face Mapping” chart I found below and see if the same is true for you. Here’s to healthier, happier looking skin!
Acne Map Remedies
|Between the Brows
|Chin and Jaw