All Posts By Lauren Miyashiro

A Healthy Sweet Treat — The New Girl

by in Healthy Recipes, February 2, 2013

With the arrival of 2013 came the usual self-promises and aspirations: Eat healthy, exercise every day, etc.  While these intentions are lovely in themselves, inspiration tends to wane once February comes around. Although I’ve tried, I’m not a salad-everyday type.

If you find yourself struggling to keep your resolutions, check out Bobby Flay Fit. In his seven-day web series, the grill master shares his secrets to leading a healthy lifestyle. By practicing moderation and using aromatic ingredients low in calories, Bobby proves that you can still enjoy delicious food while fulfilling your New Year’s goals. What are his favorite guilt-free flavor boosters? Citruses and spices.

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Blogger Spotlight: Lisa Johnson

by in Uncategorized, October 19, 2012

Lisa Johnson is a highly regarded personal trainer, fitness expert and writer. She considers herself a “pilates geek” and has traveled the world in an effort to learn everything there is to know about piltes. By running an award-winning Pilates studio in Boston and helping people achieve their fitness goals on a daily basis, she offers a unique, approachable perspective to her blog Lisa Johnson Fitness.

How did your passion for fitness begin?

I was just so easily inspired! As a kid, I watched the Olympics and started doing gymnastics because I wanted to fly through the air, then I watched a movie about soccer legend Pele and I started playing soccer. Once I start moving I almost always like what I’m doing.

What can people expect to find on your blog?

The food section is a mix of healthy living, recipes (even from celebrities!) and the latest in green news. We think about our reader as smart, self-educated about food and someone who wants to feed themselves and their families well. They care about the politics of food but they like to have fun in the kitchen too. And the recipes better taste good! All of ours are kitchen tested.

My fitness section is a mix of fitness news, and a lot of how-to’s that you can use immediately. I’m also known to throw in a rant every now and again when something hits mainstream media that drives me crazy! My big passions are to get people moving and feeling better about themselves. Any time I get a thank you from a reader in the comments I smile for days.

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Blogger Spotlight: Laura Wright from The First Mess

by in Uncategorized, October 12, 2012
A Southern Ontario native, Laura believes that seasonal, whole foods are a celebration of the community. On her blog The First Mess, she uses simple ingredients that are accessible to everyone.  Her cooking expertise derives from her experience in culinary school, working in restaurants, growing up around farms and collecting an extensive library of cookbooks.

What’s the meaning behind your blog’s name, The First Mess?
It’s a reference to a passage in M.F.K. Fisher’s An Alphabet for Gourmets. I wouldn’t call myself a “gourmet” by any means, but her thoughts on the first peas of spring really struck me. She refers to the arrival of “the first mess” of them and goes even further to call it “the day with stars on it.” There’s was so much reverence and gratitude in that passage, for nature, the earth and our nourishment. The blog takes root in those ideas; eating seasonally, respecting nature, eating well etc.

How do you define “healthy”?
I’ve always loved to eat healthy, but in a more casual and free kind of way. Celebrating produce in season, the practice of cooking regularly at home, gathering around a meal with people in your life—I look to these easy strategies as guidelines for a healthy and happy life. I’ve studied nutrition extensively in culinary school, worked in a bunch of restaurants, read countless books on health, but I always go back to those more basic ideas because they are liberating in their simple practicality.

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Blogger Spotlight: Lindsay Nixon from Happy Herbivore

by in Uncategorized, October 5, 2012
Lindsay is passionate about her plant-based, low-fat diet. Along with the Happy Herbivore blog, Lindsay has authored two successful cookbooks and offers meal planning services for both individuals and families. Most of her recipes come together in twenty minutes, making them accessible for busy home cooks. She uses mostly whole, unprocessed foods, and refrains from adding fat to the meals she prepares.

Why did you and your husband choose to adopt a vegan lifestyle?

Initially I was motivated by the plight of farm animals and the amazing health benefits associated with a plant-based diet. My husband, on the other hand, was more drawn to it from an environmental aspect and we’ve since rubbed off on each other. Now we’re both motivated by our health, the animals and the environment. Eating a plant-based (vegan) diet has truly changed our lives.

Is it difficult to cook without using oils and butter?  Which ingredients do you use as substitutes?

It’s very easy. Instead of oil I saute in vegetable broth or water and I bake or broil instead of frying. With baked goods I replace butter and oil with applesauce or pumpkin most of the time, but have also used shredded zucchini and beans (Yes! Beans! It’s amazing how well they work). I find cooking this way also allows for a greater depth of subtle flavors. Oils and butters tend to coat the tongue, so it’s a little like tasting food with a glove on. Once you take them away, the components in the dish really shine.

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Blogger Spotlight: Jacqui Scoggin from Good Things Grow

by in Uncategorized, September 28, 2012

jacqui scogginWhen Jacqui isn’t running Slide Sideways, a graphic design and handmade goods business with her husband, she’s a freelance photographer/stylist and recipe developer. Her blog Good Things Grow is focused on seasonal, whole foods, with recipes that are meant to be shared around the table. You can also find her work in the Meatless Monday column at Martha Stewart’s Whole Living blog.

What is your favorite season to cook in?

Definitely the current season we’re in. I love when the end of summer flows into the beginning of fall. Here in the Pacific Northwest our climate is typically a lot cooler year round, with August reaching its peak, so we still get all the tomatoes, berries, and peppers along with the apples, winter squash and root veggies. It’s so much fun and easy to cook with such fresh and seasonal produce.

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Blogger Spotlight: Tina Haupert from Carrots ‘N’ Cake

by in Uncategorized, September 21, 2012
Tina is a cookbook author, full time writer and blogger, and is certified as a personal trainer. With a passion for fitness and food, maintaining a healthy lifestyle is a top priority. Tina is not a fan of dieting, so her weight loss tips encourage permanent lifestyle changes, as opposed to depriving yourself. Through Carrots ‘n Cake, the title of both her book and blog, she encourages a balance of “eating your carrots and savoring your cupcakes, too!” 

Describe what a normal day of eating is for you.

A normal day of eating for me involves lots of whole foods. I eat a Paleo-esque diet, but I’m not super strict about it and allow for splurges every now and then. For breakfast, I usually eat a two-ingredient pancake with almond or sunflower butter. Lunch is a salad with chicken or Curry Tuna Cakes or Spaghetti Squash Pancakes. Dinner is usually meat and veggies. Some of my favorite dinner recipes are Gingery Broccoli and Beef and Dry Rub Steak with Avocado SalsaSweet Potato Wedges are also a weekly staple in my lunches and dinners. For snacks, I like sliced banana with nut butter and protein shakes made with coconut milk and vanilla-flavored egg protein.

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Blogger Spotlight: Anjali Shah from The Picky Eater

by in Uncategorized, September 14, 2012
Anjali grew up a “whole wheat” girl, but married a “white bread” kind of guy. Hoping to prove that nutritious food could in fact be delicious and desirable, she taught herself how to cook and successfully transformed her husband’s eating habits. Through her blog The Picky Eater, Anjali shares her passion for healthy, tasty cooking.

How do you define yourself as a “picky eater”?

When people think of being a “picky eater,” they think of the little kid who doesn’t want to eat anything except ice cream for breakfast, lunch and dinner. But I define the Picky Eater philosophy as being something very different. Being a “Picky Eater” is about being mindful of what you put into your body and consuming processed foods in moderation. Eating healthy is usually associated with tasteless food, but to me, Picky Eating is healthy eating that’s delicious, easy to make, and satisfying.

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Blogger Spotlight: Lisa Leake from 100 Days of Real Food

by in Uncategorized, July 20, 2012
Lisa’s Vegetable Quesadillas on Whole-Wheat Tortillas
Lisa Leake is the woman behind the popular blog, 100 Days of Real Food. As a mother of two, she and her husband pledged to go 100 days without highly-processed or refined food in 2010. Since then, she has challenged others to follow her family’s healthy lead by taking a 10-day pledge or committing to “100 days of mini-pledges.”  Her blog offers tips on meal planning, packing school lunches, shopping for real food and more. 

Tell us a bit about the inspiration behind your commitment to real food. Why did you start and how did you decide on the 100 day pledge?

Like many others I always knew eating whole grains and vegetables was supposed to be good for you, but the problem was I never truly understood the “why” behind this advice. I became intrigued by the topic after seeing Michael Pollan discuss where our food comes from in a TV interview, and then I went on to read his book In Defense of Food. What came next was a huge wake-up call for our family when I realized what I thought were healthy food choices were actually highly processed and not good for us at all. It wasn’t easy at first, but I felt compelled to completely revamp the way we planned our meals, shopped for food and cooked.

I also felt compelled to spread this important (and shocking!) message to others, which is why we decided to create our 100 Days of Real Food pledge. Cutting out highly-processed food was honestly not easy for us at first and even kept me up at night. I thought my kids might starve if Goldfish, Kraft Macaroni & Cheese, and Gogurt were suddenly out of the picture.  So once we figured out how to realistically make the transition to real food it just made sense to share our research, tips, recipes and experiences with others to hopefully inspire them to do the same.

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