Hi juice friends!
Back in the fall of 2010, I started a nutrition blog called Nutrition Concierge. It was my first foray into the blog world and an opportunity to share all the knowledge I had gained during my Master’s program. A ton of nutrition info was floating around in my head and I had no idea what to do with it. So I started blogging and sharing with anyone who wanted some simple nutrition tips and advice on how to eat healthy but still have a fun life (i.e…not getting rid favorites such as wine, pizza, french fries, etc!). Now that the holiday season is upon us, I thought I would drag out this oldie but goodie. Enjoy!
Here are some tips on what hors d’oeuvres and decadent foods to stay away from, ones in which to indulge, and the few to sneak when no one is looking! The happiest (and sometimes most stressful) time of the year is upon us! As are the numerous invites for holiday parties, work socials, and celebrations dedicated to this lovely month. While we rush around to buy the perfect presents, decorate our homes, and start thinking about our goals and dreams for the new year, we tend to lose ourselves in the process. Namely, we eat. And we eat a lot. Maybe you were “good” all year and are letting loose or you have allowed yourself to indulge this season. Either way, enjoy the food offered but at the same time try not to overdo it and begrudgingly have to add “Lose Weight” to the top of your New Year’s Resolution.
Stay away from…
- Creamy dips - Normally loaded with calories, saturated fat, and sodium. If you must, take a small amount and use raw veggies as dippers.
- Sliders - We can never have just one! They are so tiny and cute! If you must, take off the top bun and don’t dip it in the aioli.
- Bacon-wrapped anything - Need I say more.
- Fried treats - We all know that fried foods go right to our hips, thighs, and belly, providing us with excess fat and calories. If you must, have one piece and fill the rest of your plate with foods from the INDULGE LIST.
- Mini Quiches - Normally made with pastry and eggs, this is already extremely high in calories, regardless of the spinach in it. If you must, have only one!
- Pigs in a Blanket - Another “very little and very easy to eat 10″ type of appetizer. Almost 100 calories per little pig, eat one or two and leave the rest to the other party goers.
- Mini Pizzas - Depending on the topping, you may want to opt out of this appetizer OR indulge if it’s covered in healthy vegetables. Again, anything mini is going to trick your mind into thinking that more than one is ok. Sure, if you want to add “Lose Weight” to the top of your Resolution list.
- Egg Nog - Dear God..when did this become a staple in our holiday diet? Imagine drinking milk, cream, and eggs all in one little cup? No bueno! Just don’t do it. If you must, make sure it’s the low-fat variety.
- Raw veggies with hummus / bean dips - Loading up your plate with veggies will provide you with fiber, antioxidants, and will fill up your tummy so you don’t have five brownies later in the night.
- Shrimp Cocktail - Shrimp is a great source of lean protein.
- Variety of nuts - Eat these for an abundance of healthy fats.
- Salsa - Low in calories and high in antioxidants. Limit the chips and try veggies instead!
- Fresh fruit bowl - Snacking on fruit doesn’t sound as fun as the Pigs in a Blanket but your pants will thank you later, as will your body for giving it the essential vitamins and minerals it craves.
- Olives - Wonderful source of healthy fats and are low in calories (but tend to be high in sodium so still limit your consumption).
The Ones to Sneak…
- Desserts - The dessert table really tests your willpower. And since it is the time to celebrate, have a dessert and enjoy it. But remember, the plates are small for a reason. Don’t pile it to the sky. If your dessert fits on the plate, then perfect. Don’t add more. That will be your way to “portion size” the best food at the party!
- Alcohol - The calories all add up so increase your water intake and refer to my blog “To Drink Skinny, Is To Be Skinny” for some tips at the bar.
***Remember to eat something before you head off to the party. Going on an empty stomach will set you up for failure and you will unconsciously overindulge. A little healthy snack beforehand (complex carbohydrate, lean protein, and healthy fat combo) will help stabilize your blood sugar levels and prevent the “ravenous you” from coming out!
If you are asked to bring an hors d’oeuvre or side dish for a party, check out these websites for some healthy recipes…
Embrace and enjoy this beautiful season and if you have too many Pigs in a Blanket, don’t stress about it. Exercise the next day, drink lots of water, try a juice cleanse in the new year, and love your body unconditionally!
Hey there friends!
Hope the start of Fall is treating you well! Remember…. this is the most important time of the year to keep up with your immunity, so make sure to supplement your diet with fresh, cold-pressed juices. It’s the easiest and most effective way to get the vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and wonderful nutrients into your cells. Not to mention, it will keep your body hydrated and prevent that feeling of being rundown. With the holidays right around the corner, it’s the best time to think about becoming SUPER healthy. Perhaps doing one of our cleanses is a great way to jumpstart your health and wellness before the craziness sets in.
Speaking of craziness, it has been a whirlwind past couple of months since getting the juice truck. Learning how to drive that beast was quite intense and then determining where to go every day was such a challenge. But we have settled into our new life with the truck and even got to name it. After opening the name game to all of our fans and followers, we came away with a great name! Our juice truck is called J.i.M. – Juice in Motion. We love it and feel like it really encapsulates everything we are striving to offer.
I also got to meet the awesome, Max Goldberg, of LivingMaxwell and founder of the Pressed Organic Juice Directory. Such an awesome guy! We talked all about the juice world and nutrition. It’s super fun to chat with someone that is so passionate about healthy living as I am. I brought over the juice truck and got to present my juice line to him and his followers. Check out the video here!!!
Thank you for continued support of VEJ and please stay tuned….we have lots of exciting news to bring you in the next couple months!
In health and happiness,
Hey there juice friends!
Exciting news to report that we made it into The Denver Post last week!!! The food editor, Doug Brown, had done our cleanse a couple months ago and wrote a pretty awesome piece about his experience during the 3-days and also our expanding business here in Denver. Interestingly enough, I also wanted to bring light to an issue from the article. As you will notice, we are parked in front of a fire hydrant. I have had many people contact me regarding this faux pas and I thought it was important to address this issue. We do not park in front of fire hydrants and for the sake of the pic and getting the right lighting/shot, we had to move the truck very briefly. Once the shot was over, we moved it out of the way. :)
Thank you for all your support in the past 2 months as the juice truck gets more comfortable being on the road. Look forward to meeting many more of you in the months to come.
In health and happiness,
Cold-pressed juices are booming in Colorado, including Whole Foods
Juice bars, juice menus, $8 single-serving bottles of kale-and-fruit juice at Whole Foods, juice “cleanses,” even a juice truck. Upscale juice (not a glass of OJ, but elixirs made with things like dandelion, ginger, beet, chard, carrot, cucumber, mint, and much more) has been ascendant in Denver and Boulder for nearly a year, and along with the flood of beverages has come a good bit of talk about their benefits.
We will get into those alleged juicing benefits in a bit, but first, my experiment. I worked with Jill Latham, a registered dietitian who owns Vibrant Earth Juices, a Denver juicery and juice truck, to go on a three-day juice fast.
Latham’s juices, like most of the nouveau concoctions, are “cold-pressed,” meaning a hydraulic press squeezes juice from the vegetables and fruits. The method extracts more liquid, and because the machine does not have whirling blades, like most home juicers, the stuff being juiced does not heat up and thus “cook.” Most people selling cold-pressed juices also trumpet that they are raw, or uncooked.
Either way, I wanted to see if I could get by on juices alone for a few days, if I indeed would feel more energetic, more “clear-headed,” as juicing-fans say.
So on a recent Tuesday morning I gulped 16 ounces of kale, romaine lettuce, dandelion, parsley, celery, cucumber, apple, lemon and flax oil, and launched into my busy day at work.
The hours would be divided into six juices. Day one was the toughest. The juices filled me up adequately, but I craved chewing and the taste of food. By the time I got home in the evening, to a plate piled with my daughter’s homemade macaroons, my desire to chew had grown powerful; I inhaled those macaroons before returning to my blend of kale, beets, carrot, apple, cucumber, ginger, flax oil and strawberry.
The juice was no macaroon, but it was good, as were the others, which had things like almond milk, pear, pineapple, cranberry, flax oil, flax meal — all of them were packed with organic ingredients and designed to carry me through the day, with different combinations of fat, fiber and protein (from nut milk) as well as the nutrients.
Drinking nothing but nutritional juices for a short period of time doesn’t carry many health concerns, said local dietitians. Fasting might not bring with it a lot of scientifically proven benefits, but things like kale, dandelion, beet and ginger offer important nutrients to a diet; if they come in juice form, it’s better than not having them at all.
Juicing is “gaining in popularity, and it helps clients get their five to nine servings of fruit and vegetables,” said Jessica Crandall, a dietitian at Denver Wellness and Nutrition and a spokesewoman for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietitics. “Make sure you don’t do it long-term, though. And also make sure the juices aren’t just fruit-based, that they have protein, essential fatty acids, as well as vegetables. If it’s just fruit, it’s an excessive amount of calories. You might as well be eating the blueberry pie instead of the juice.”
Suzanne Farrell, owner of Cherry Creek Nutrition, said short-term cleanses are fine but not really necessary. To her, a proper cleanse is an overall diet that is free from most processed foods, and has a good balance of protein, fiber (which is eliminated in cold-pressed juices) and nutrient-dense plants and vegetables.
“I think it makes sense to put the effort forth to introduce healthy foods like kale and beets to the diet, getting more of the foods that decrease things like heart disease and cancer,” she said. “But to only do them? The research doesn’t show cleanses are beneficial.”
Both dietitians are more fond of using juices as diet supplements rather than meal replacements.
The occasional juice, rather than the six-a-day route, certainly is more affordable. One of Latham’s juices costs $10. A three-day fast, complete with juice deliveries, nutrition consultations and pre- and post-fast menu ideas, costs $195.
The cost reflects the amount of produce that goes into a juice; think about the volume of juice that gets pressed from a bunch of kale, versus an orange. It’s much less, and the high-end juices are packed with ingredients that aren’t necessarily swollen with liquid. In addition, in many cases the produce is organic, which comes at a premium.
The cold-pressed juices at Whole Foods, which were first introduced in the region about six months ago, are “booming and growing by leaps and bounds” said Dave Kauder, grocery manager for the Rocky Mountain Region. The region carries three brands of cold-pressed juices, and more are on the way. Regional managers wondered if the high price might turn the category into a dud, but that hasn’t happened, and Rocky Mountain-area stores are considering adding their own cold press machines in a month or so.
Despite the dietitians’ reservations about fasting, I did find the experience helpful. I appreciated how I learned to put aside cravings. When all you are having for meals is juice, you save a lot of time previously spent shopping, cooking, eating and cleaning-up. By the time it was over, I felt healthier, and never did I feel like I was starving myself.
I don’t see it happening again anytime soon, in part because of the cost. But the occasional liquid lunch? (And I’m not talking martinis.) Absolutely.
We are so excited to announce that our custom built juice truck has arrived in Denver! It is more beautiful than we could have ever imagined and can’t wait to share it with everyone in Denver. We have to get signed off by the health dept and hope to be out and about by Wednesday of next week.
Look forward to bringing you the best cold-pressed juice in town!
Thanks to the amazing, Andra Zeppelin, on her great article about our move to Denver and the arrival of our juice truck. We are so excited to be featured in Eater Denver. Its an amazing website to get all the hot news on restaurants, bars, and anything food!
Check it out!!
Jill Latham packed up and moved her two year old juicing business based in Santa Barbara, California to Denver just weeks ago. Latham wanted to be in Colorado to be closer to family but she also saw an opportunity here to grow her company, Vibrant Earth Juices, and elevate the standard for cold-pressed juices in the Mile High City. Her juices are freshly pressed, raw and organic, made with fruit and vegetables sourced as locally as possible.
Right now, juice fanatics can order the juices or juice cleanses online and get them delivered to either their home or office, but in less than a month, the option to pick up from a variety of locations will become available when Vibrant Earth Juices rolls out its custom-built juicing truck to the streets of Denver.
When Latham came up with the idea of a juicing company, she had no business experience. Fresh out of school, this registered dietitian who holds amasters of science in nutrition, dietetics, and food science, decided to spread the benefits of something she was passionate about in her own life- juicing. She opened a store in Santa Barbara, built her internet presence and clientele, and now, after a cross-country move, she’s ready to bring her juices to a truck. Less than two weeks ago, she won Woman Entrepreneur of the Year in Emerging Business for Vibrant Earth Juices, presented by The Spirit of Entrepreneurship Foundation.
Latham’s juices stand out in both taste and nutritional value. The inventive combinations like pineapple, pear, and mint or pear, cucumber, ginger, lemon, and Aloe Vera Juice create unique flavor profiles. On the nutrition side, using her background as a registered dietician, Latham decided to add a teaspoon of flax oil to all of the fruit and vegetable blends. This is not common in other juices. The flax oil is a vegan oil, high in antioxidants and Omega-3 fatty acids. Including it helps with the digestion, transport, and absorption of the nutrients in the juices.