Empty Washrooms Are a Girl’s Best Friend

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We’re going to stray from the usual topics for a moment and get honest.

For our entire lives, women have been told to be ashamed of bodily functions. It’s not lady like for our bodies to work the way they’re supposed to – and we’ll go to some hilariously extreme measures to ensure everyone thinks our buttholes are sewn up tight with a silky pink ribbon. Even to each other.

I’ve talked to guys about this. They do not do these things. Some to a degree, but they are nowhere near as neurotic as we are.

When you’re in public and have to go, it’s stressful. You don’t want anyone to hear you, and you definitely don’t want anyone to realize how long you’re gone.

Maybe you pretend you got a phone call! That’s a good one. Or at least look at your phone as you’re walking out so it looks like you might make a phone call.

Entering the bathroom is a crucial moment. Maybe you listen at the door to see if someone is in there…

One of two things is about to happen:
1) You’re going to be so happy no one is in there and rush to a stall (probably the furthest one) and try to get it over with before anyone else comes in. OR

2) There will be one or three people in there and your heart will sink. Now, you have 4 options. All equally crazy.

a. Leave. (Not a great option. You’ll look crazy (which you’re not!) and everyone will probably know what just happened)

b. Pull the “I’m just here to wash my hands”, then leave. Viable option.

c. Implement a. or b. and try another washroom if you have that luxury. (Hello, 9th floor washroom at my office.)

d. VERY slowly make your way to your carefully selected stall. VERY slowly undo your pants etc. and then wait it out. You can try and only pee, but that’s risky.

Now you’re all alone. Maybe you need to double check with a quick shoe check. You’re trying to get this over with quickly. Everyone probably has a stopwatch out and knows how long you’ve been gone and thinks you’re so gross for digesting food. Then, oh no, someone walks in. STOP EVERYTHING! Now we’re not fooling ourselves, we know they know what’s happening. There is girl bathroom etiquette. You get super quiet (but not too quiet, you don’t want them thinking they’re alone…). You could even try lifting your feet so they don’t know who it is (especially if you’re sporting flashy shoes)… but again, they may think they’re alone. If you’re right in the middle and there is just no stopping it, there are a few things you can do:

1) toilet paper in the bowl as a little poo cushion

2) a good strong cough

3) maybe you need to blow your nose?

4) the classic, perfectly timed flush

Now let’s talk about the girl that just walked in. If you know there is someone in the stall holding back for your sake, you best be hustling. You pee as quick as you can and you get out of there. If you have to go too, go back to entering the bathroom and skip d. This bathroom is taken. I swear to god, if you are fixing your makeup, I will end you. I can see your shoes.

Once you’re done, if someone has entered the bathroom, you quietly get your toilet paper (so no one hears that you need more than a pee’s worth). You wash your hands, and you get the eff out of there.

When you re-enter society, don’t forget to pretend that you just got off the phone.

You Should Know Squat

In the world of health and fitness, there are so many schools of thought, opinions, and techniques. How is anyone ever to know who to trust, what will work for them, and what is B*!!shit?

Find out for yourself. Do some research. I’m not saying you need to become the biggest expert and most forward thinker in the field, but knowing your basics can help you steer clear of the things that can harm your body – because there are tons of fads that are just plain bad for you.

I’ve always been the kind of girl that wants to get to the bottom of everything. I want to absorb all the knowledge that I can. This may come from my inherent need to be right (but at least I earned the right to be confident that I am!… right?). This also translated into me being the kid in high school staying home on friday nights watching documentaries in my room on my sweet tv/vcr combo. I like learning. I like knowing what I’m talking about. I like having conviction and not looking like an idiot.

I started an online class recently to receive a certificate in Sports and Exercise Nutrition. This is not to say I want to change my career, but I wanted to learn about what my body needs in order to be active, and the science behind it.

Also, let me tell you, the more you learn about this stuff, the better you’ll treat yourself. You realize the crap you’re putting into your body, and the damage you cause when you don’t give it enough fuel and energy. I’m not here to give you lessons on what you should be doing (we just like to share what WE’RE doing!), you need to find out what works best for you, because we’re all different. I see a lot of girls doing these insane diets and cleanses that I, personally, disagree with. These are unhealthy short term solutions to something that should be a slow and longterm lifestyle change. You may drop some pounds at the beginning (though, mark my words, they’ll come back with a vengeance once you fall off the wagon (which you will (because it’s unrealistic))), but your body needs nutrients to function; because it’s not just about weight, the things you put in your body – or don’t put in your body – affect so much more: energy levels, skin, hair, nails, sleep, brain functionality… but I digress.

Do your freaking research before you mix hot pepper and honey for 10 days, or whatever. Please. If you still want to do it – to each their own; but at least know what you’re depriving your body of. We need to stop with the “everything for vanity” mentality, and concentrate on being healthy and fit. Trust me, the hot bod will follow. It really will. It will be even better, because you’ll feel great.

-kylie

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Just Do It

ac·count·a·bil·i·ty                                                                                                                           noun: accountability                                                                                                                                        1. The fact or condition of being accountable; responsibility.

“It is not only what we do, but also what we do not do for which we are accountable.” – Moliere.

I’ve been realizing success does not come to you, you go to it. This is a fairly easy concept to understand… much harder to execute. I have also decided that I need to be held accountable for my actions (and mostly, my inactions).

I don’t know what it is, but I seem to have this perpetual habit of quitting. I am a quitter. All talk. Unrealistic about my goals in comparison to the amount of effort I am actually willing to put in at times. I get on a roll and right before I am about to breakthrough that plateau… I stop. I am not completely defeated, I do reach goals – just very inconsistently.

I think that I thought that I would suddenly find something that motivated me, a muse if you will. I want to inspire people, and to feel inspired! So how do I do it? How do I stop letting myself down? How do I stay on track and not give up on my dreams and goals when things get tough? How do I stay ACCOUNTABLE? First thing’s first… let go. I am an emotional woman. I let things get me down and they literally get the best of me, so this is my first challenge – Let go of the guilt, the bad day I had, my relationships with others, the way I feel when I give up on myself, etc. Just. Let. Go. OK, check.

“The right thing to do and the hard thing to do are usually the same.” ― Steve Maraboli.

There are so many reasons not to do something. It is often too tempting to make excuses and take the easy way out. I know firsthand this “easy way” is not all it’s cracked up to be. Nobody feels good when they’re not in shape or living a healthy lifestyle. I understand it is a journey, and you learn and become stronger along the way. I love the journey, but I am ready to break this pattern and reach that peak. I know it will make all the difference, in every single aspect of my life.

VISIONBOARD

So here are some tips I will be incorporating into my life; some I have used before – and they work for me, and some are new things I’m going to start doing;

  • Take measurements:  I do love the scale because for me I know when I am slipping and it’s usually a big wake up call to get me moving. I do know it does the complete opposite for other people. Measurements are a great and effective way to track progress without making you feel badly if you are gaining muscle and the numbers go up.                                        
  • Buy new workout wear:  I don’t know about you, but a new pair of Nikes or workout gear always makes me excited for that next run.
  • Log your Food: Tracking what you are eating on a daily basis is so important. Most of us don’t realize how much we actually eat. When you have to write it down, you will most likely think twice about those bad choices.
  • Visualize your success: I LOVE vision boards. They aren’t for everyone, but I think they are an amazing tool. Make one with all of your favourite pictures, quotes – anything that inspires you, and post it where can see it every morning. Seeing really is believing. ❤
  • Enlist a workout buddy: It is always easier with a friend. It’s science.
  • Hire a trainer: This can be expensive, but they definitely are worth it if it helps you reach your potential.
  • Make time for YOU: Make your workout a priority. Schedule it in your calendar or phone if you have to – It will make the rest of your day much more enjoyable.
  • Sign up: Whether it’s a team or a run, etc. Knowing you have to be ready for something makes you more likely to stay active. I enjoy team sports. You can still workout and have fun at the same time!
  • Challenge yourself and don’t be too hard on yourself:  Allow yourself to make mistakes without feeling completely defeated, and always just keep moving forward.

I know I promised Insanity results, so I am going to deliver. These tips are going to help me get there. Consistency is the key! #DIGDEEP EVERYONE!!

Ash xo

Oh. Hello Summer. I didn’t see you standing there.

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Holy shit. It’s June. It’s summer, and it’s hot outside. Where did it come from? Am I the only one that didn’t see it coming? Where are all my summer clothes? Do I even fit in them? Why are my legs so white? Did my thighs just rub together? Don’t say “bikini” to me, I’ll hurt you. I’m not ready, I’m seriously not ready.

As I strolled down Queen West this weekend surrounded by out of shape people and blinded by pasty skin – I realized that I’ve screwed up…and by the looks of things I wasn’t alone. I had so much time to get my summer body ready and to at least rub on a fake tan; but I’ll admit I slacked off a bit and then summer punched me in the face. But it’s not too late..it’s never too late.

In the wise words of Britney Spears – “You want a hot body? You want a Bugatti? You want a Maserati? You better work bitch.”

So, here’s a fun little workout that you can do at home, in the park, or anywhere you’ve got a few feet of open space. It’s fast, painful, and effective. Let’s get to work!

Warm-up!

5 minutes skipping (alt – jog on the spot)

25 Jumping Jacks

1 minute of High Knees

1  minute of Butt Kicks

The Good Part

25 Squat Jumps

25 Pushups

25 Jump Lunges

1 Minute – Plank

25 Leg Lift Crunches

25 Hill Climbers

1 Minute Side Plank – 30 seconds each side

25 Elbow to Knee Standing Crunches

25 High Kicks

50 Straight Punches

Repeat!

Don’t forget to stretch and hydrate once you’re done. Good luck!

Alyssa

xoxo

Beachbody? Yes Please.

These past few months I have been going through what I would like to refer to as a ‘quarter life crisis’, though the fact is the average life expectancy in Canada is 80 years old, which means this is realistically more of a ‘third life crisis’ and that really stresses me out.

I think we all have our own perception of what 30 was/is going to be for us. I know for me I thought most certainly I would have an important power position at work, married, kids, 2 dogs, white picket fence, I mean I will be OLD!!! Flash forward… I sit here writing this and as I am fortunate enough to have a great job, I am single and live in a tiny condo downtown, by myself. I still feel like I am 21… how did this happen? It feels like yesterday I was being told, `you are so young, live your life’. These days when people ask me how old I am, it is more often than not followed by “Oh wow”. It’s all happening.

That being said, I am embracing this upcoming milestone (that’s what they all say, I know) and I have decided since I have all of this independence and freedom, I am going to challenge myself and get into the BEST shape I can by my birthday – July 17th. Typically, whenever I say I am going to do something like this, it lasts about 2 weeks and then I have a cheat day, which leads into a cheat month. Not good. This time is going to be different. Consistency is going to be the key to my success. In order to maximize my time, I will have to put my abs and booty in the trusty hands of Shaun T.

This guy does it all, choreographer and fitness expert, he really knows how to motivate you and most importantly – he gets results. I had the great honour and privilege of working out with Shaun here in Toronto last year. It was such an incredible experience. Talk about a man who is genuinely passionate and kind. There were hundreds of people there and he stood for hours after the group workout and took pictures and spoke to each person individually about their experiences. He is a real inspiration to me.

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Insanity is a Beachbody program created by Shaun T. It claims to be the hardest workout ever put on tape, and I believe it. Using nothing but your own body weight, you do endless push-ups, squats, jumping jacks, suicides, burpees, you name it… then the warm up is over. WARNING: This program is not for everyone. If you are extremely out of shape or afraid of hard work you might want to try something less intense, this will prevent injury and you will be less likely to get discouraged and quit. “It’s get fit, or get out people”. On days when I am tired, I literally dread it. BUT, it gives you equally as dramatic results. I did this program for the first time about 4 years ago, I was out of shape, lethargic, and had every single excuse in the world as to why. Let me tell you, as that version of myself, Insanity was one of the hardest things I have ever done, and in retrospect one of the greatest. I lost 50 pounds and gained a new appreciation for everything and everyone around me. Amazing things happen when you push your body past its limits and take back control of your life. There is no better feeling, for me at least.

What you can expect from Insanity

They were not exaggerating when they named this program. Each workout is done at a very strenuous pace (if you have any lingering joint issues be extremely careful). Insanity is based on the ‘Max-Interval Training’ principle which is essentially the opposite of traditional HIIT workouts, meaning you work hard for 3 minutes and rest for 30 seconds.

Month 1 – consists of 5 videos that are scheduled differently each week.

If you can make it through these 4 weeks, it is then followed by a week rest phase that consists of 1 video. It is very important to get this much-needed recovery. Trust me.

Month 2 – is really tough, these 4 videos are much more demanding and longer than the first month, but at least now you can now see the light at the end of the tunnel, and the results are motivating and exciting.

An easy to follow schedule and eating plan are also included to ensure you are eating properly to get the most out of all of your hard work. Abs are made in the kitchen!

I am a huge supporter of Insanity and Shaun T. It will not be easy, but if you are up for the challenge I promise it will push you out of your comfort zone and throw you into a pile of your own sweat on the floor. You will get insanely incredible results but you will have to work for them, and hard.

So here I go again. If you think you have what it takes, please join me!

I am currently on Day 4/60. Day 60 being my birthday. I will be posting my progress every 2 weeks (with pictures, at the end). #DIGDEEP everyone!

GET INSANE

Ash xo

Coo-coo for Coconut Oil

I’ve been using coconut oil (aggressively) for about a year now, and I still find new ways to reap its benefits.  Here’s my top ten list of uses for coconut oil:

 

  1. To cook eggs (whites for me) in. You won’t regret it.
  2. Cut up sweet potato, rub a bit of coconut oil on it, and bake. Delicious.
  3. To cook my protein pancake. Throw a bit on the pan and pour in the pancake mix (egg whites, oats, blueberries, and cinnamon). Heck, cook anything in it.  It’s healthy, smells amazing, and tastes delicious.
  4. Lip gloss. Yup. Lip gloss.
  5. Use a bit in your hair to smooth it out and style the ends.
  6. Leave-in conditioner. Rub a small amount mostly into the ends of your hair, comb through and leave in for about an hour before washing out. So silky and smooooothe.
  7. Use on the skin as a basic lotion.
  8. Popping popcorn! Instead of butter – coat the bottom of the pot with coconut oil  and add just enough kernels to make a single layer over the bottom of the pot.  Shake the pot up a bit, put over medium heat, cover and pop!
  9. Add a teaspoon to your coffee or tea.
  10.  Use it as a makeup remover, or on a sunburn, or even on your pets. It’s magic. Anything goes. Go crazy and enjoy!

 


coconut-oil

 

Alyssa

xoxo

Salmon with a Pea and Mint Puree

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lucky for me, the man I live with (aka my boyfriend, aka chris, aka a total dreamboat) loves to cook as much as I do. we made this salmon a little while ago when friends of ours came over for dinner, and broke the cardinal rule to never try something you’ve never done before for company. well screw that rule, because it was awesome – so awesome we had to do it again so I could write about it.

this meal is really healthy. you can see that one of two ways… the way I usually think – BORING! how I am now seeing all of this – SCRUMTRULESCENT!

 

Salmon:

-salmon fillets (the fresher, the better)

-olive oil

-a little butter

-thyme sprigs

-sage leaves

 

Pea/Mint Puree:

-peas

-fresh mint leaves

-olive oil

-lemon

-garlic

-s&p

 

boil your peas. they can either be fresh or frozen, doesn’t really matter, they just need to be soft enough to puree. once they’re done, strain them… otherwise it will be pea and mint soup.

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depending on how much peas you’ve made, you may need to adjust measurements of the other ingredients. to be honest with you, I don’t measure a lot, so you’ll have to bear with me… maybe 3 cups of peas? maybe the juice of a lemon and a half? maybe 2 sprigs of mint leaves?

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maybe 3/4 of a clove of grated garlic? maybe 2 circles of pouring olive oil? maybe as much salt and pepper as you can see in this picture? maybe add more later when you taste it? you’ll probably need more salt.

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puree with an immersion blender. word to the wise, put a towel over it while you blend if it’s a shallow pot/bowl/hat. this will happen if you don’t – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IoQtYDyeMWE

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in a SUPER hot pan (that can go in the oven… no plastic handle) drizzle in some olive oil, and a little bit of butter with thyme and sage. Yes, yes. Butter isn’t awesome for you, but it’s a little concession for the sake of deliciousness.

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you want this to be so hot it’s scary. salt and pepper, then put the fish in skin down to get it delicious and crispy. maybe wear long sleeves. spoon the juices over the top of the fish while you sear the skin, for optimal moisture.

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this should only take a few minutes, then pop it in the oven at 375 for about 12ish minutes (or until it’s all opaque)

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to serve, spread out the puree, lay salmon on top, skin up, and you can garnish with the sage or thyme.

QUINOA BONUS!

-quinoa

-currants

-goat cheese

-pine nuts

make your quinoa. just follow the package. substituting water for chicken broth is tasty, or maybe just half and half, or just water!

I like to cool my quinoa down before I use it usually; especially when using a cheese like goat cheese. fridge or freezer, depending on how long you have.

roasting nuts it tough. well, no. you just have to WATCH THEM. med – med/high heat and toss often.

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then mix in your currants and goat cheese!

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super easy, and it was super delish.

let’s see a pic of the whole thing again. ok.

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Happy eating!

 

Kylie

Reader Question: SQUATS!

We recently received a question from a reader/awesome chick. We thought we’d share it here because, it’s a great question, and something that a lot of people are curious about – since squats and boo-tays are all the rage right now.

 

Hi ladies this page rocks! I don’t really know how technology works or blogging but I have recently decided to give a fuck about my bod and feel like I’m trying to educate myself and doing it wrong. I was wondering if you know anything on the topic of doing squats and how they really affect one’s overall workout? I’ve been trying to figure out why. I feel like everyone is telling me to do them when no one seems to be leaving me with a clear answer. I would to love read a something that doesn’t feel markety when it comes to health trends. Thanks for listening.”

 

We are so happy you like our page, and trust us with your hips and glutes.
Squatting is an amazing exercise!!! It not only builds muscle, but improves overall balance and core stability as well. As you build muscle, the amount of fat you burn goes into overdrive. This is a beautiful thing – and since our glutes are the largest muscle group in our body, it’s very important to give it some special attention. You will reap all the benefits, trust us.
With some solid effort, you will soon be able to jump higher, walk faster, dance longer… Just about everything you do on a regular basis will become easier. So, yes. Do squats.
It is a great way to build strength and improve overall fitness. Plus, your a$$ will look amazing in just about anything. It tightens everything up, and works wonders for getting rid of cellulite.
Make sure you are doing them properly to ensure they are as effective as possible.
Just a few things to keep in mind:
1. Legs about shoulder width apart
2. Chest up, back straight
3. Keep your core tight (think of drawing your ribcage into your belly, it sounds weird but just try it)
4. Do your best to achieve your best ‘ass to grass’ – go as low as possible without compromising your form
5. Keep your knees over your toes, and BREATHE

 

Here is an extreme depiction for you… I mean, not even the same person, but you get the idea.

 

 

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Try to work these into a regular program – just squatting isn’t enough.
If you are feeling really brave you should do BURPEES. Even start with 10 every morning and night. They suck, and you will hate them – but they work! They incorporate squats, jumping, push-ups, and cardio. Also, you can do them anywhere – NO EXCUSES. When life knocks you down, do a burpee!

 

Keep ’em coming guys!

 

AKA

What’s THE DEAL with food?!

A few years ago, if you told me I should be eating organic and local food, I would have said “haha, yeah, because I’m rich and pretentious”. I was wrong. Oh, so wrong.

Though it is definitely daunting when thinking about this stuff, I’m here to help! It always seems easiest to just run out to a big chain grocery store and grab a beautiful looking tomato or apple from the massive pile. You always know they’re going to be there, no matter what time of year… wait… even when they shouldn’t be growing? Yes. Even then. Weeeiiiirrrrrd.

It’s easy to see why factory and industrial farming operates the way it does… money! Who doesn’t love money?! AMIRITE?!  The trouble is that a lot of this is seriously affecting the things we are ingesting.

I’m not going to go on a huge detailed scientific rant, as I can tend to do, I’m just going to give you the general facts.

For veggies, it all starts with the soil. To save money, the soil sucks. This makes the veg more susceptible to pests and fungus. To remedy this, they spray all the food with pesticides, fungicides, herbicides, and all sorts of crap. Crap that you’re eating. Veggies are now not growing with the same nutrients that they used to either. They’re concerned with uniformity, genetic modification, and long shelf lives. Food is picked before it’s ripe, then ripens along the thousands of miles that it travels to the store from wherever it’s grown. This is why non-organic, non-local produce is cheaper – it comes from government funded factory farms which get a higher yield, which has a longer shelf life, so they can charge less.

Meat is much worse. I’m a meat eater, and I don’t think I could do the vegetarian thing (though, to each their own). I am, however, a big advocate of humanely treated animals. Grass fed cows contain TONS more vitamins than grain fed cows (A, C, K, and the belly-fat busting Conjugated Linoleic Acid, or CLA for short). And free range eggs and chicken are from healthier happier birds. The better they eat, the better you eat. They’re not shoved into an arena with thousands of other chickens, made to live in their own feces and breathe it in until they’re sick, then pumped full of antibiotics to counteract their conditions. They’re not given zero room to walk around, then fed grains and hormones so they get giant and can’t even walk, their legs break, and they SIT THERE AND DIE!!! But I digress.

Chickens are seen inside cages on a truck near a poultry market in Dengzhou

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real-free-range

 

Take your pick.

 

Now don’t get me wrong, even non-organic, non-local foods are WAAAYYYY better for you than fast food and tons of other things we eat. All I’m saying is to be aware of where your food comes from. Take your vitamins to make up for the ones that were lost along the way. When you don’t get the proper nutrients, your body still thinks it’s hungry and will force you to keep eating… maybe even cookies. OHMYGODIWANTACOOKIE!!!

 

Now the $64,000 question… where’s the best place to get the good stuff?!

Farmers’ Markets are the best place – there are tons of markets in the city, and it’s really hard to beet the prices… see what I did there? Here’s a list of some of the great places to get local and organic foods in Toronto:

 

Fiesta FarmsThis little gem is tops. A family run grocery store on Christie St. (between Bloor and Dupont), this place has tons of organic and local food to choose from. They’ve got a great butcher section and carry Rowe Farms… which brings us to….

 

Rowe FarmsA farm with 3 retail stores in the city! Crazy! There’s one in the annex, one in Roncesvalles, and one in Leslieville – they’ve really covered their bases. You can get veggies and meat here, and also delicious pre-made soups and salads, all made with their products. If you like bacon, this is where you should be getting it. Oh man.

 

St. Lawrence Market I mean, this place just has everything. Just go. But check their hours. Every time I want to go, it’s closed. On Saturdays there is a special farmers’ market!

 

The Stop’s Green Barn at Wychwood BarnsFarmers’ Markets! You can get stuff from all sorts of local farmers and it’s a fun little outing too. Located up at Christie and St Clair Ave., it’s easily accessible by TTC, so no excuses! While you’re there, check out Footstep Organics!

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Other markets to check out:

Sorauren Farmers’ Market

Trinity Bellwoods Farmers’ Market

Dufferin Grove Farmers’ Market

Nathan Phillips Square Farmers’ Market

Evergreen Brick Works Farmers’ Market

Leslieville Farmers’ Market

 

 

Let’s not forget about growing your own!

Last year we started our first garden, and it was awesome. We were super lucky with our soil, because we either did or didn’t have chickens living in our backyard before that… (the freshest, most delicious eggs you’ve ever had!). That time of year is coming up quick, and we recently bought a new home with a HUGE garden area. So excited. If you can, I definitely recommend growing plants of your own. I will keep you posted on my planting!

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Happy, healthy eating!

 

 

Kylie

The skinny on B12

They say you don’t really know what you’ve got until it’s gone… and in this case, no truer words have been spoken.

What is B12? Well, if you ask Wikipedia (and they are always right) it will tell you  – Vitamin B12, also called cobalamin, is a water-soluble vitamin with a key role in the normal functioning of the brain and nervous system, and for the formation of blood.

Sounds important…

 

I think I was 14 when I decided I didn’t want to hurt cows anymore, or pigs, or spiders – come to think of it, Charlotte’s Web must be responsible for this. Anyway, I felt I had a moral responsibility, and wanted to save allllll the animals (Except for chickens and turkeys apparently, but that would eventually come a few years later). I was never really interested in dairy. The thought of eating eggs completely freaked me out, and I am probably a very rare breed of human being who genuinely finds cheese and milk repulsive. It seemed like a no brainer – I should become a vegan! It will be so easy. So I did.

What they don’t tell you – it is not hard to become a vegan. I mean, vegans can eat FRENCH FRIES!!! It is, however, not easy to maintain a vegan lifestyle properly. Properly meaning, supplementing for all the vitamins and minerals of which you’re not getting sufficient amounts through a plant based diet. Vegetables were once a (mediocre) source of B12 because it was found naturally in the bacteria that pesticides have now made non-existent. We live in a world of supply and demand, which has a HUGE affect on quality.

As a vegan I gained a whopping 80lbs! Yes, 8-0. Sounds outrageous, and it was. I was not only fat, but also tired, depressed, unmotivated, insecure, anxious – you name it. I will spare you the horrific details of how I got to this place and how I crawled out of it – that is a whole other story.

After numerous blood test and doctors’ appointments, I was diagnosed as Vitamin B12 deficient. I had never really even heard of this vitamin, and considering the symptoms I had were starting to mimic those of MS I was shocked that they didn’t think of this sooner. I started getting B12 shots monthly, and after the first one I felt like new person – Or the way I feel when I buy a new pair of shoes – ALIIIIIIIIVE!!!

 

B12 Deficiency Symptoms – just to name a few:

Strange sensations, numbness, or tingling in the hands, legs, or feet

Difficulty walking (staggering, balance problems)

Anemia

Anxiety

A swollen, inflamed tongue

Yellowed skin (jaundice)

Difficulty thinking and reasoning (cognitive difficulties), or memory loss

Paranoia or hallucinations

Weakness

Fatigue

…And they only get worse.

 

Some great benefits of B12 include:

Increases energy levels. (It makes you less lazy, yes you.)

Helps maintain healthy regulation of the nervous system, reducing depression, stress, and brain shrinkage – I know a lot of people who could benefit from this last part

Helps maintain a healthy digestive system

Protects against heart disease by curbing and improving unhealthy cholesterol levels, protecting against stroke, and high blood pressure

It is amazing for healthy skin, hair, and nails

Helps protect against the C word in many ways – including breast, colon, lung, and prostate cancer

 

Vitamin B12 is found in most animal derived foods, including fish and shellfish, meat (especially liver – yuck), poultry, eggs, milk, and milk products.

I would highly suggest taking a B12 supplement, even if you eat an adequate amount of these foods  (This is especially important if you are a vegetarian/vegan, smoke, are pregnant, elderly, suffer from anemia or celiac disease).  B12 also aids in maintaining a healthy metabolism – which is awesome.

Lucky for you, you can find this little miracle just about anywhere.

 

Ash xo