#thatcleanlife Clean Eating Challenge

I love it when I hear from fellow bloggers with similar interests and passions. When I got an email from Abigail Keeso of That Clean Life (website and blog here) asking me if I wanted to do one of her clean eating challenges, I was all in.

I actually have no problem with doing the occasional detox or cleanse (except for liquid-only cleanses, which sound like the worst thing ever), but I do have a hard time finding time to plan everything out beforehand with my busy schedule. The Spring Break Detox was only 6 days long, and Abigail had already set up grocery lists in advance, so it wasn’t too tricky after all.

And the recipes were delicious! Here are some of my favourites. (Please excuse my food photography; I’m still new at this!)

Breakfast Bowl

This has actually become my new favourite breakfast. And it’s grain free, so no starting the day feeling bloated! The nut butter keeps you full, and the berries add that sweetness that a lot of people crave in the morning.

Sweet Potato Chips

Yum! I never realized homemade chips were so easy to make, but I’ll definitely be doing this again. The squeeze of lime juice over top really completes it.Chicken Salad

This Cleaned Up Chicken Salad was one of my favourites by far. Super easy to make and a great lunch for work. I would probably add pecans or walnuts next time.

xo

Fave Find: Little Life Box

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Look what came in the mail!

Not long ago, I was approached by a company called Little Life Box, asking me if I’d like to review their product. As my first so-called “sponsored” blog post, this was very exciting! And thankfully, I have plenty of great things to say about it.

Basically, the premise is that, for a reasonable cost, they send subscribers a box every month filled with natural/eco-friendly goodies–everything from supplements to skin care to snacks.

This gives people a chance to sample great products on the market, so it’s ideal for people who want to try out natural products in a cost-effective way, or for people who want to stay on top of the latest products and trends. (I’m tempted to add that it’s also for anyone who would like to receive mail that’s awesome, and not bills. What’s better than getting a package in the mail? Honestly.)

The package received promptly, and filled to the brim with great products. here are a couple of my favourite:

  • EcoTools ECOPOUF Mini Sponge: I love EcoTools’ makeup brushes and use them every day, but I didn’t realize they had a much wider product range! It’s great for lathering my eco-friendly shower gel. Best of all, it’s recycled and recyclable!
  • Montage Jeunesse Manuka Honey Mask: I love that companies are recognizing the healing powers in natural ingredients, and manuka honey is one of those amazing natural ingredients–packed with antibacterial ingredients without being packed with chemicals. I don’t give myself enough time for at-home pampering, but I really should, because doing a great face mask at the end of a long day is pure bliss!
  • Bounce Coconut Macadamia Protein Bliss: I munched on this as my mid-morning snack one workday, and was amazed as how delicious it was. I shouldn’t have been surprised though, considering it contains some of my favourite ingredients–namely, coconut and macadamia. And I also love that it’s GMO-free.

The verdict? Little Life Box is a great, fun way to get exposed to awesome products you might otherwise not know exist. A definite win!

Find out more about Little Life Box…
on their website: littlelifebox.com
on Twitter: @LittleLifeBox1

xo

4 Surprising Things About Popcorn

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I absolutely love popcorn. While chocolate still might be my hands-down favourite treat, popcorn is a definite second and comes before chips or ice cream any day. Often, popcorn gets a bad rap for being an unhealthy movie theatre snack, but when prepared without massive amounts of salt or drenched in toxic trans fats, it’s actually more of a superfood. Here are 4 things you might not know about popcorn.

1. It’s packed with antioxidants–even more than fruit!

A study released almost two years ago measured the antioxidant content, in the form of polyphenols, of popcorn, and found that popcorn is highly concentrated with these free radical-fighting, super healthy compounds. The reason why popcorn’s antioxidant content is much higher than fruit is because of its relative water content: fruit contains a high amount of water, which dilutes the antioxidants, meaning we have to eat more to get the same effect. Popcorn is also a whole grain high in fibre, which does everything from promoting digestive health to regulating blood sugar levels and making us feel full longer. Three cheers for healthy and delicious!

2. Ancient people ate it 6,700 years ago

New research shows that ancient people in what’s now known as Peru snacked on popcorn 5,000 years earlier than previously believed–6,700 years ago. They did so by cooking the cobs of corn over coal, over flame, or in an oven, This proves once again that we didn’t really “discover” any superfoods–they have been used by people many, many years ago.

3. Microwave popcorn bags contain chemicals

Chemicals like dangerous nonstick coatings. Yuck. While some companies are planning to phase out the chemicals, who knows what will replace them. To avoid the mysteries of chemicals and their (largely unknown) health effects, be a smarter snacker and make popcorn using an air popper (like mine, seen below). It’s ridiculously easy and fun. Plus, the retro look of a air popper will elevate your hipster status. I like to add butter and cayenne pepper for a kick.

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(As an adorable side note, the family dog Flirt knows my popcorn routine very well, and will come running at the sound of the hot air popper. Her self-appointed job is to eat all the popcorn that misses the bowl and falls on the floor. Well done, Flirt).

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4. It’s non-GMO

If you’re like me in that you’re interested in learning about food politics and issues, you likely know that a large amount of corn we eat is genetically modified. Until recently, I assumed that this was true about popcorn as well. But while doing research for a new article I was writing a few months ago, I learned that popcorn is its own type of corn and (at least for now) it’s non-GMO. Another happy reason to snack on!

xo