Homemade Applesauce

Homemade Applesauce

Applesauce is another one of my favorites to make for my son to eat for breakfast or a snack because of how nutritious, delicious, and filling it is. It is also easy, quick, and cost effective!

Ingredients

  1. Two (organic) Apples
  2. (Purified) Water

Optional Ingredients

  1.  Rolled Oats
  2. Chia Seeds or Hemp Seeds

Step 1:

Peel and chop two apples of your choice.


Step 2:

Boil (purified) water for a few minutes. Then pour boiled water into a bowl and add chopped apples. Let soak for five minutes.

Step 3:

Scoop all of the apples out of the water and into the blender. Then add some of the water that the apples soaked in and pulse until it’s a consistency of your liking. 



Step 4 (optional):

Add toasted Rolled Oats, Chia Seeds, or Hemp Seeds for additional nutrition. 

I hope you enjoy this homemade applesauce recipe! 

Recipe for Quinoa Guacamole Salad 

Recipe for Quinoa Guacamole Salad 

Good morning and happy Saturday! Quinoa Guacamole Salad is one of my favorite recipes to make for Paul for lunch or dinner because each of the ingredients are packed with nutrition. =) The recipe is as follows (click on the ingredient whose nutrition you would like to explore):

Recipe
Ingredients: 

  1. [Organic] White quinoa 
  2. [Organic] Frozen Spinach
  3. [Organic] Tomatoes 
  4. Scallions 
  5. Lime
  6. Salt
  7. Pepper
  8. Two [Organic] Avacodos 

Part 1:                    


Place 1 cup of [organic] white quinoa, frozen [organic] spinach (it is my preference to use frozen spinach for this recipe) and 2 cups of [purified] water into a pot over medium heat. As soon as it reaches a boil, cover the pot and lower the heat as low as possible so that it is simmering. Let simmer for about 15 minutes or until the water is completely absorbed into the quinoa. 

Part 2:


While the quinoa cooks, prep your quacomole. The ingredients for this recipe should be based on your preferences. Place two ripe [organic] avocados in a bowl and mash them with a fork until the consistency is smooth. Then add in the ingredients of your choice. In this recipe, I added and mixed [organic] tomatoes, scallions, salt, pepper, and one lime into the avocados.  You can add jalepenos, cilantro, onions, etc. Then cover and cool in the refrigerator.

Part 3:


When the quinoa is done cooking, serve with the guacamole for your little munchkin to enjoy =D 

Tip: for extra nutrition, add a tablespoon of [organic] hemp seeds. =D 

Thank you for reading! I hope you have a happy happy happy Saturday! =)

Modeling and Encouraging Healthy Eating Habits and Lifestyle 

Modeling and Encouraging Healthy Eating Habits and Lifestyle 

Modeling and encouraging Paul to learn healthy eating habits and teaching him how to live a healthy lifestyle is a top priority of mine. The way we shop, the products that we buy, and the recipes that we make are all carefully considered to ensure that Paul is getting the nutrition that he needs in his daily diet primarily from products that do not contain preservatives, coloring, hormones, antibiotics, etc. If you are looking to buy products that are free of these potentially harmful components, the label to look for is organic. Other labels, such as “all natural” and “farm raised” are labels that do not necessarily mean that their products are preservative, hormone, antibiotic and color free; so it’s best to buy the regular inorganic products if you can not find the organic products.  

Paul not only watches Matt and I cook, he helps us! I usually give him a small task to do, like wash a few pieces of spinach off in the water and then place it in the pot. While we are prepping and cooking, we talk to him about the ingredients that are going in his food and why these ingredients are nutritious for our bodies. He helps us do tasks like mix the ingredients together or scoop them into bowls. Then, he watches mama and dada enjoy healthy good eats which makes him want it too. 

Along with eating healthy, Paul also watches mama make fitness a priority. We go on walks every day that it is not raining; and he sees my interest In living an active lifestyle. I try to workout during his nap time every day, but he usually wakes up before I finish so he ends up spending the last 10 minutes working out with me. He is very interested in my weights, and tries to lift them; but they weigh almost as much as he does!

Teaching relaxation is another priority of mine when teaching him how to live a healthy lifestyle. I have been working on teaching Paul how to take deep breaths in through his nose and out through his mouth (which he thinks is hilarious). Now that Paul only takes one nap a day, we take 30 minutes a day to relax together by doing breathing exercises and reading. Yoga will eventually be added on to this routine. We also work on breathing exercises when he becomes upset and emotional. 

Finally, I have been on a mission to avoid and eliminate as much toxins as possible from our home environment. This includes furniture, cookware, toys, etc.

Paul is my miracle. There are no words to describe how much I love him. I want to teach him the skills that will help him live a happy, relaxing, conscious, and healthy lifestyle. Thank you for reading, I hope you have a happy Tuesday! =D

The Ultimate Power Dessert: Yogurt Ice Cream

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Happy Saturday! Matt has created many recipes throughout my pregnancy to satisfy my ever changing cravings. This dessert is not only super delicious, but it is nutritious for you and your baby =D There are two recipes that we have been making.

Recipe 1:

Ingredients:

Plain Greek Yogurt

Frozen Strawberries

Pasteurized Honey

Chia Seeds

Lemon

French Vanilla Oats

Recipe 2:

Ingredients:

Plain Greek Yogurt

Peanut Butter

Banana

Chia Seeds

Pasteurized Honey

Lemon

French Vanilla Oats

Place the yogurt and frozen strawberries (Recipe 1) or the yogurt, peanut butter, and banana (Recipe 2) in the food processor or blender. Add some raw organic honey, some chia seeds, and a squirt of lemon. This measurements are based on your taste, after the ingredients are mixed, add more of anything that you would like. Place the mixture into a bowl and put it in the freezer until it is at a texture to your liking. Sprinkle french vanilla oats on top for a nice crunch.

What nutrients do these ingredients contain?

Plain Greek Yogurt

Yogurt contains protein, calcium, vitamin B-12, potassium, and magnesium. It also contains probiotics, which research suggests boost the immune system.

Pasteurized Honey

Honey boosts your immune system and reduces heartburn. It contains calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, sodium and zinc.

Chia Seeds

Chia seeds contain fiber, iron, protein and calcium.

Peanut Butter

Peanut butter contains protein, fiber, potassium, magnesium, and healthy fats.

Oats

Oats contain fiber, potassium, and iron.

Strawberries

Strawberries contain vitamin C, magnesium and calcium.

Bananas

Bananas contain potassium and vitamin B6

Lemon

Lemons contain calcium, thiamin, folate, phosphorus, magnesium, copper, manganese, vitamin B6 and riboflavin.

How does the nutrition found in these ingredients foster your babies development?

Protein is necessary to the baby’s growth and organ development.

Calcium is necessary to the baby’s bone development.

Magnesium helps to regulate blood sugar levels and your build tissues.

Potassium contributes to balancing electrolytes and nerve impulse transmission throughout your body.

Vitamin B12 is essential for the formation of red blood cells.

Copper assists with developing the baby’s heart, blood vessels, and skeletal and nervous systems.

Iron helps create blood for you and baby as well as transports oxygen throughout your body.

Phosphorus helps with the baby’s bone development.

Zinc is essential for the baby’s rapid cell growth.

Fiber helps regulate the digestive track in pregnant women.

Vitamin C assists with the development of the baby’s skin and bones.

Vitamin B6 helps promote the production of white blood cells by ensuring that the organs that create them remain healthy.

Thiamin helps promote a healthy nervous and muscular system for your baby.

Riboflavin helps a baby develop bones, muscles, and nerves.

I hope that you enjoy this delicious dessert =D Happy Saturday <3333

 

 

How I am Staying Fit During Pregnancy

Good afternoon and happy Thursday! Even though I have been unable to do toning exercises, I have been trying to stay as fit as possible by eating healthy, drinking a lot of purified water, and going on daily walks. I have been gaining 1 lb a week since week 13, so I am currently 130 lbs (my pre pregnancy weight was 115) and I have about 12 to 15 more pounds to gain depending on the size of my boy. I have found many recommendations online about how many calories to eat on a daily basis, but honestly, I do not follow any of these suggestions. When I am hungry, I eat. Since the second trimester, I have been consuming approximately 1800 to 2300 calories a day. Though I do add up my daily calorie intake, I am not concerned with them. What is most important to me is where I am getting the calories from. I try my best to limit the amount of empty calories I consume on a weekly basis since they have little or no nutritional value and try to keep my diet very healthy. I am very happy if I consume 2300 or more calories from nutritional foods in one day. =D

There are specific items that I try to always have in my kitchen to ensure that I am eating healthy and nutritionally:

Fruits and Vegetables

Avocados, Organic Spinach, Organic Apples, Oranges, Frozen Strawberries and Mangos, Bananas, Tomatoes, Onions, Organic Celery, Organic Carrots, Jalapeños, Red Peppers, Cucumbers, and Garlic

Protein

Chickpeas, Cannelloni Beans, Red Beans, Organic Eggs, Organic Peanut Butter, Organic, Whole Chicken, and 90% Lean Ground Beef

Dairy

Greek Yogurt, Parmigiana Cheese, Butter and Whole Milk

Oils

Canola Oil or Olive Oil

Grains

Pasta and Whole Wheat Bread

Drinks

Orange Juice and Sparkling Water

Seeds

Chia Seeds

There are so many delicious and nutritious meals that could be created with these ingredients. I have been sharing my husband’s recipes and explaining how each ingredient in the recipe impacts the development of a growing fetus. If you would like to view some, you can click on the following links =D

Chicken Burrito

Beef Chili

Chicken Salad Sandwich

Upcoming recipes include homemade hummus with homemade yogurt sauce, chicken chili, and fruit smoothies  =)

Thank you for reading, I hope you have a wonderful day! <3

 

Why I Avoid the Deli Line

Good evening and happy Friday! As soon as I found out I was pregnant, I started researching foods that would offer essential nutrition to my baby as well as which foods that could potentially cause harm to my baby. Three foods that I used to eat on a regular basis have been on my avoid list during my entire pregnancy. As difficult as it has been, I am just too afraid to risk it.

Deli Meats

meats

Oh how I miss my Prosciutto, Salami, and Sopressata. My mouth is watering just thinking about the delicious salty spicy goodness that could be in my mouth right now. As much as I love these meats, there is a risk of Listeria contamination on all deli and hard meats. Listeria poses a huge threat to your baby. Listeria contamination could be found in other foods as well. Please read about it on the Center for Disease Control website:

http://www.cdc.gov/pregnancy/infections-listeria.html

and on the Food and Drug Administration website:

http://www.fda.gov/Food/ResourcesForYou/HealthEducators/ucm083320.htm

Over Easy Eggs

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I was eating these beauties every day for breakfast. I stopped when I found out I was pregnant because that delicious runny yolk can be contaminated with Listeria or Salmonella. It seems that Salmonella is not AS serious as Listeria or Toxoplasmosis, but it still may pose complications to your pregnancy and your baby.

Medium Rare Red Meat

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I absolutely loved eating juicy medium rare burgers. We would top them off with jalapeños, onions, mushrooms and avocado to create the perfect juicy burger. I stopped eating undercooked red meat because there is a risk that it could be contaminated with Ecoli, Salmonella, Listera, or Toxoplasmosis. Ecoli, like Salmonella, does not seem to be AS serious as Listeria or Toxoplasmosis, but like Salmonella, may pose complications to your pregnancy and your baby.

If toxoplasmosis is contracted during pregnancy, the bacteria causes serious risks to your baby’s growth and development. Please read about it on the Center for Disease Control website:

http://www.cdc.gov/parasites/toxoplasmosis/gen_info/pregnant.html

http://www.cdc.gov/pregnancy/infections-toxo.html

http://www.cdc.gov/parasites/toxoplasmosis/

and on the Food and Drug Administration website:

http://www.fda.gov/Food/ResourcesForYou/HealthEducators/ucm083327.htm

Listeria and toxoplasmosis are two bacterias found in food that pose a huge risk to your baby’s growth and development. Unfortunately, I had a toxoplasmosis scare at the beginning of my pregnancy. If you are interested, check it out here: http://sandrabasile.com/index.php/2015/09/05/my-cute-little-kitties-and-my-toxoplasmosis-scare/

For more information about food poisoning, please refer to the following websites:

http://www.livestrong.com/article/528520-the-risks-of-rare-meat-when-pregnant/

http://www.cdc.gov/features/holidayfoodsafety/

http://www.webmd.com/food-recipes/food-poisoning/food-poisoning-during-pregnancy-topic-overview?page=1

http://www.livestrong.com/article/367332-effects-of-food-poisoning-while-pregnant/

http://www.cdc.gov/features/ecoliinfection/

http://www.livestrong.com/article/507063-the-dangers-of-undercooked-meat-in-pregnant-women/

I hope that this post was helpful =D Thank you for reading, I hope that you have a wonderful night <3

 

My Number Two Pregnancy Craving: Jalapeño Sauce!

Happy Friday everyone! I have always loved spicy foods, but ever since I became pregnant I can not stop eating hot sauce with breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert! My favorite hot sauce is Trader Joe’s Jalapeño Sauce. It is perfection in a bottle. It is especially delicious with my scrambled eggs and toast in the morning =D The best part is I can understand every ingredient that is in this bottle. The ingredients are red ripened jalapeños, hot chili peppers, distilled vinegar and salt. I highly recommend this delicious sauce. I hope you have a wonderful night! =D

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Delicious Chicken Burrito

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Good afternoon and happy Friday! =D Chicken burritos are one of my favorite dinners because it is simple, delicious, and all of the ingredients are super nutritious! We oven roasted and steamed a whole 8 lb chicken for 3.5 hours at 350 degrees. The whole chicken is cooked at 25 minutes a pound. To steam the chicken, water is placed on the bottom of the pan. Be sure to cover with tin foil before placing in the oven. When the chicken comes out of the oven, separate the breasts, legs, and wings. The meat will be so moist from being steamed in the oven that it falls right off the bones. We made four different dinners from each part of this whole chicken.

For this meal, we are using chicken breasts, spinach, avocados, and whole wheat tortillas.

Why is this meal nutritious for your baby?

Oven Roasted Chicken Breasts contains Protein and Iron.

Spinach contains Magnesium, Folate, Iron, Calcium, Potassium, Fiber, Choline, Omega 3 Fats, Vitamins B1, B2, B6, and C. Eating spinach contributes to preventing birth defects in the baby.

Avocado contains Omega 3 fatty acids, Protein, Vitamin A, B6, and C, Calcium, Iron, Folate, and Magnesium. Eating avocados are essential to the baby’s eye and brain development.

Why are these nutrients important?

Iron helps create blood for you and baby as well as transports oxygen throughout your body.

Protein is necessary to the baby’s growth and organ development.

Fiber helps regulate the digestive track in pregnant women.

Calcium is necessary to the baby’s bone development.

Choline is essential to the development of the baby’s nervous system.

Omega 3 Fats is necessary to the development of the baby’s brain, eyes and nervous system. Many prenatal pills have DHA, which is an Omega 2 fatty acid.

Vitamin B1, also known as Thiamine, promotes the baby’s brain development.

Vitamin B2, also known as Riboflavin, contributes to the growth of the baby’s skin as well as eye development.

Manganese helps with the formation of the baby’s bones.

Vitamin C assists with the development of the baby’s skin and bones.

Vitamin B6 helps promote the production of white blood cells by ensuring that the organs that create them remain healthy.

Magnesium helps to regulate blood sugar levels and your build tissues.

Folate contributes to the prevention of brain and neural tube defects in your baby.

Potassium contributes to balancing electrolytes and nerve impulse transmission throughout your body.

Thank you for reading, I hope you have a wonderful day <3

 

Delicious Chili =D

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Matt introduced chili to me a few years into dating, and it has been one of my favorite dishes since. Chili is super delicious and you can taste every ounce of love that Matt puts into it. What makes this dish even more amazing is that each ingredient contains nutrients that are essential to our son’s development =D

Lean Ground Beef or Ground Turkey

Contains iron and protein

Black Beans

Contains fiber, thiamine, protein

Red Peppers

Contains vitamin C, vitamin B6, magnesium, and folate

Jalapeños 

Contains vitamin C, iron, and manganese

Tomatoes

Contains vitamin B6, vitamin C, folate, iron, potassium, magnesium, and chromium

Onions

Contains vitamin C

Why are these nutrients important?

Iron helps create blood for you and baby as well as transports oxygen throughout your body.

Protein is necessary to the baby’s growth and organ development.

Fiber helps regulate the digestive track in pregnant women.

Thiamine helps promote a healthy nervous and muscular system for your baby.

Vitamin C assists with the development of your baby’s skin and bones.

Vitamin B6 helps promote the production of white blood cells by ensuring that the organs that create them remain healthy.

Magnesium helps to regulate blood sugar levels and your build tissues.

Folate contributes to the prevention of brain and neural tube defects in your baby.

Potassium contributes to balancing electrolytes and nerve impulse transmission throughout your body.

Chromium assists with breaking down and storing fat and protein as well as contributes to stabilizing glucose levels in your body.

Recipe by my wonderful and thoughtful fiancé, Matt <3

Ingredients

Love

1lb Ground Turkey or Lean Beef

1 Jalapeno

2 Red Peppers

1 Onion

4 Tomatoes (or you can add one 1 can of tomato puree)

1 Package of Black Beans (or 1 can of black beans)

Salt

Pepper

If you are using beans that come in a package, you will need to cook the beans for a few hours before they are ready to be consumed.

After the beans are cooked, you can put a pot with some oil (we use canola oil) on medium heat and place ground turkey or beef into it. When fully cooked, add onion, peppers, and jalapeño and cook until they are sautéed. Then add the tomatoes (or can of tomato puree) and the cooked black beans (or can of beans) into the pot and stir. Cover and let cook on medium heat for about 2 hours stirring every couple of minutes, then let it simmer for another half hour still stirring every couple of minutes. Turn the gas off and let set for a few minutes before serving.  It is super delicious and super nutritious.

I hope that you enjoy and that you have a happy Tuesday =D

 

My Number One Pregnancy Craving: Homemade Healthy Chicken Salad Sandwich

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I absolutely love this meal. It is so delicious, and I constantly crave it! What I love about this meal is that three of the ingredients positively enhance my baby’s development.

Chicken:

Chicken contains protein and iron.

Plain Greek Yogurt

Yogurt contains protein, calcium, vitamin B-12, potassium, and magnesium. These are some of the nutrients that you will find in your prenatal vitamins. Yogurt also contains probiotics, which research suggests boost the immune system.

Canola Oil

Research suggests that canola oil is good for the heart and contains Omega 3.

Depending on the brand, the content of each nutritional value varies; but all chicken and yogurt contain these important nutrients =D

Recipe by my wonderful and thoughtful fiancé, Matt <3

Ingredients 

Love

chicken breasts

celery sticks

plain greek yogurt

onion

red wine vinegar

salt

pepper

The pan is buttered to avoid sticking.

The chicken breast is coated with canola oil, and then baked in the oven at 375 for about an hour.

After taking the chicken out of the oven, the chicken is pulled with a fork and placed into a bowl. Add as much onion, celery, plain greek yogurt, salt and pepper to your liking.

I like to eat my chicken salad on toasted sourdough bread (because I understand all of the ingredients) or whole wheat bread and with a delicious beefsteak tomato.

Organic VS Non-Organic

Whether eating organically or non organically, what is most important is that your child is getting the nutrients that are vital to his or her’s development. There is no right or wrong way to eat poultry, fruits, or vegetables, so as long as you are eating nutritionally, you are doing a wonderful job! =D

If you are interested, I would love to share my opinions and perspectives on why I choose to eat the way that I eat. When financially feasible, I try to eat organically as much as possible to avoid preservatives and food additives in my food. I either shop at Trader Joes or Shoprite because they are close to my apartment; both stores have organic options.

When I shop at Trader Joe’s, I buy the organic low fat plain greek yogurt and the organic chicken breast. When I shop at Shoprite, I buy Chobani plain greek yogurt and either the organic chicken breast or Tyson chicken breast (it is usually on sale). At both places, I try to buy all of my fruits and vegetables organic if they are selling it. Whether I buy organic or non organic fruits and vegetables, I always wash them under water and scrub them with a produce brush to kill any bacteria.

I hope you enjoyed this post! Let me know if you try this recipe. I would also love to hear your perspectives on eating organically and non-orgnaincally =D

I hope that you have a happy Monday <3