Fuel to go Muffins

These muffins are my go to! They are loaded with healthy ingredients like seeds, apple, zuccini and carrot. They are gluten-free and dairy-free as well. Enjoy!


    • 1 cup all purpose baking gluten-free flour
    • 1 cup almond flour
    • 1 Tbls cinnemon
    • 2 tsp baking powder
    • 1/2 tsp salt
    • 1/2 cup shredded coconut
    • 1/2 cup dried fruit (cranberries/blueberries/cherries)
    • 1 cup grated carrots
    • 1 cup grated zuccini
    • 1 apple grated
    • 1/2 cup sunflower seeds
    • 1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
    • 1/4 cup chia seeds
    • 1/4 cup hemp seeds
    • 3 eggs
    • 1/2 coconut oil melted
    • 1 tsp vanilla
    • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup


    1. Mix together flour, cinnamon, baking powder and salt in a large bowl.
    2. Add dried fruit, coconut, seeds, dried fruit, apple, zuccini and carrot. Stir to combine.
    3. In a separate bowl whisk eggs with oil, vanilla, and pure maple syrup.
    4. Combine this mixture with dry ingredients and blend well. This will be very thick.
    5. Fill 12-18 muffin baking cups heaping full.
    6. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Tops nicely browned and crips.

    Recipe Notes: Because of the fresh fruit and veggies in it muffins need to be kept in airtight container for 3 days in fridge or freeze extra muffins.

    Zoodles with Vegan Pesto

    I had two of my high school friends from Wisconsin visiting this summer and we had a blast making dinner with zoodles (zucchini noodles) and vegan pesto. You can heat it up or eat it at room temperature. So delicious!

    Serves 4

    Zoodles – you can purchase frozen or make your own with a spriralizer.

    Vegan Pesto:

    • 2 cups packed fresh basil (large stems removed
    • 3 Tbsp pine nuts, walnuts or sunflower seeds
    • 3 Garlic Cloves
    • 2 Tbsp lemon juice
    • 3-4 Tbsp Nutritional Yeast
    • 1/4 tsp salt
    • 2-3 Tbsp olive oil
    • 3-6 Tbsp water
    • optional – add grape tomatoes
    • Instructions:

    In a food processor, add the basil, nuts, garlic, lemon juice, nutritional yeast, and sea salt and blend/mix on high until a loose paste forms.

    Add olive oil a little at a time (streaming in while the machine is on), scrape down sides as needed. Then add 1 Tbsp water at a time until the desired consistency is reached – a thick but pourable sauce. 

    Combine pesto and noodles (add grape tomatoes if wanted) If you want it warm put in a sauté pan to gently heat through.

    The 3 things that happen in our body when we spike.

    I recently read the book, “Glucose Revolution, The Life Changing Power of Balancing Your Blood Sugar” by Jessie Inchauspe’ ” It was an incredible book that I highly recommend reading.  She is also on Instagram as the “Glucose Goddess” Here is a quick summary of the book.

    Basically too many glucose spikes in our blood are not good for our bodies.  In fact, glucose spikes  can cause oxidative stress and when oxidative stress becomes too much it becomes the driver of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, cognitive decline, and general aging. Also our bodies are toasting, meaning that when glucose molecules bump into other molecules they are damaged or glycated.  It is an inevitable part of life  and why we age however we can slow the aging process down or speed it up.  The long-term consequences of glycated molecules range from wrinkles and cataracts to heart disease and Alzheimer’s disease. Slowing down glycation in your body leads to a longer life.  Lastly, we have insulin who’s sole purpose is to stash excess glucose in storage units throughout the body to keep it out of circulation to protect us from damage.  The main glucose storage units are the liver and the muscles. Once those 2 areas are filled, we store it in our fat reserves. There is way more science that goes into explaining all of this but I want to get to the good part….the hacks that Jess Inchauspe has come up with when we eat to decrease these glucose spikes.


    Veggies, protein and good fats and then starch last


    Start every meal with a salad or green – the fiber is what slows everything down and flattens the curve rather than spiking it.


    It’s about the type of calories we eat (types of foods) rather than how many calories we eat.


    Go savory – include a good amount of protein, fiber, good fat and optional starch and fruit. 


    Basically all sugars will spike your blood glucose – so really minimize the sugar that you do have.


    If you are going to have a sweet treat, have it at the end of a meal that includes fiber, protein, and good fats.  If you have a sweet snack on an empty stomach your blood sugar will spike super high.


    Add a tablespoon of vinegar to a tall glass of water with in 30 minutes of eating (acetic acid is the ingredient that lowers blood sugar from spiking, it does not increase insulin levels which is good because increasing insulin increases inflammation which ultimately increases disease and weight gain)


    With every new muscle contraction, glucose molecules are burned up and flattening our glucose curve. Just a 10 minute walk after a meal can help.


    This means not a starchy snack either – try apple slices with nut butter, bell pepper slices with guacamole, celery with nut butter, seeded crackers with hummus or a slice of goat cheese, a handful of nuts with a square of 90% dark chocolate.


    Combine starches and sugars with good fats, protein or fiber such as adding avocado to your toast, spread nut butter on rice cakes.

    The Blue Zones

    I have been reading the Blue Zones books and I have been cooking from the cookbook as well. The Blue Zones are areas around the world where the healthiest, longest-lived people on earth live.  Through research they have discovered what they call the Power 9 – practices that together  – increase longevity health and happiness.  (All information has been found from The Blue Zones Challenge by Dan Buettner)

    1. Move naturally:  By living in an environment that  constantly nudges people to move without even thinking about it. The centenarians grow gardens and don’t have mechanical conveniences in the kitchen or for yard work.
    2. Purpose:  “why I wake up in the morning” Knowing your sense of purpose can add 7 extra years to your life expectancy.
    3. Downshift: Stress leads to chronic inflammation, which is associated to every major age related disease. What is your way to de-stress everyday? (meditation, journaling, reading, time with good friends or family, nap….)
    4. 80 percent Rule:  Hara Hachi Bu- the Okinawans mantra that is said before meals to remind them to stop eating when their stomaches are 80 percent full.  The 20 percent gap between not being hungry and not being full could be the difference between gaining and losing weight. People in the Blue Zones eat their smallest meal in the late afternoon or early evening and then nothing for the remainder of the day.
    5. Plant Slant:  Beans are the cornerstone of most centenarians diet. Meat is sometimes consumed but only eaten on average of 5 times per month.
    6. Wine @5:  People in the Blue Zones (except Adventists) drink alcohol moderately and regularly The trick is to drink 1-2 glasses per day of (preferably Sardinian Cannonau Wine) with friends and or food.
    7. Belong:  All but five of the 263 centenarians interviewed belonged to some faith-based community. Denomination doesn’t seem to matter.  Attending faith-based services four times per month will add four to 14 years of life expectancy.
    8. Loved Ones First: Successful centenarians in the blue zones put their families first.  This means keeping aging  parents and grandparents nearby or in the home. They commit to a life partner and invest in their children with time and love.
    9. Right Tribe:  The world’s longest lived people chose or were born into  social circles that support healthy behaviors.  The social circles of long lived people have favorably shaped their health behaviors.

    Trying to change your behavior without changing your environment will lead to failure. Now is the time to set up your home and kitchen for success.

    How do we do this???  

    • Get rid of foods that are off limits or might be too tempting, such as candies, junk or processed foods. Clear your countertops of any kinds of snack foods (chips, crackers) Move your toaster out of sight.  A toaster on the counter gives us a visual cue to toast something every time we walk in the kitchen and usually most of what we put into the toaster is unhealthy.
    • Stock up on always foods: beans, nuts, whole grains, fruits and vegetables.
    • Put a bowl of fresh fruit on the counter
    • Meal plan for the week to make shopping easier

    Summer Time

    I just love summer time! It is a time of rejuvenation! Longer days of sunshine so we are bound to get more vitamin D in our system to help build our immune system for the winter. Longer days of sunshine can also mean more time to play outside and maybe be with friends and family more…another immune booster. Fresh fruits and veggies coming from local farmers that have more nutrients, to again build our immune system. Maybe you even have your own garden. I can’t grow much at almost 10,000 feet but greens do grow well here in Breckenridge. Take advantage of all these wonderful aspects of summer. Get outside and into nature as much as possible, go to your local farmers market for fresh fruits and veggies, eat at least one salad a day (it’s easy and good for you!). What is your favorite part of summer?

    The Truth About Belly Fat.

    I love to listen to podcasts on health and wellness.

    Dr Hyman’s, “The Doctor’s Pharmacy” is one of my favorites. He recently had a great podcast on belly fat.

    Here is a summary of his podcast, check it out for more information.

    Belly fat, or visceral fat around the organs, is the number one cause of aging. It causes inflammation which causes all age related disease.

    There is an increased risk of blood clots, it changes your hormones and it can change your brain chemistry and more.

    The top foods that cause belly fat are flour and sugar, especially sugary drinks (soda, juices, energy drinks, sweetened coffees).

    So how do you get rid of belly fat?

    The number one way to get rid of belly fat is removing breads, pastries, pasta and any sugary drinks. OR what I like to do is crowd out the things you don’t want in your diet and replace them with healthy options. Instead of having toast in the morning, try chia seeds, oats and nuts or poached eggs on top of quinoa, black beans and spinach.

    Stick to water with a squeeze of lemon instead of juice, add cinnamon to your coffee. Instead of sugar, try soda water with a squeeze of lime instead of soda. By staying hydrated, you will have more energy and have better energy than having an energy drink.

    Sheet Pan Curry

    I have been perusing the library for cookbooks and have found some new goodies! The Clean Plate by Gwyneth Paltrow had so many simple, flavorful healthy meals. One of my favorites was the Sheet Pan Curry. It is so simple and very delicious!!

    serves 4

    • 6 garlic cloves, grated
    • 2 tsp. curry powder
    • 1 tsp garam masal
    • 1 tsp ground turmeric
    • 1 tsp grated fresh ginger
    • 3 TBLS coconut oil
    • 1.5 lb boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into 2-inch pieces
    • 1 head of cauliflower, cut into about 2-inch florets
    • Pickled Red Onions (see below)
    • Fresh cilantro leaves, to garnish

    Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

    In a large bowl, combine the garlic, curry powder, garam masala, turmeric, ginger, and coconut oil and work them into a paste. Toss the chicken and cauliflower in the paste to coat. Spread the chicken and cauliflower in an even layer over the prepared baking sheet. Roast for 15 to 20 minutes. rotating the pan halfway through.

    Serve topped with pickled onions and cilantro

    Pickled Red Onions

    • 1 medium red onion, thinly sliced
    • 3/4 cup water
    • 1 Tblsp whole black peppercorns
    • 1 tsp kosher salt
    • 1 garlic clove, crushed
    • 1 star anise pod
    • 1/2 tsp coriander seeds
    • 1 1/4 cups apple cider vinegar
    • 4 drops of liquid stevia

    Put the onion in a medium bowl and set aside

    Combine the water, peppercorns, salt, garlic, star anise, and coriander in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Remove from the heat, add the vinegar and stevia, then pour directly over the onions.

    Let cool, then refrigerate. The pickles are ready to eat as soon as they’re cool. These should last a few days stored in a covered jar or bowl in the refrigerator.

    Better Sleep

    Many people in our country are sleep deprived. Our ability to achieve both the quantity and quality of sleep we need is compromised. This leaves us feeling completely and totally exhausted. We are bombarded from every angle with constant disruptions to our bodies’ natural rhythms. The constant screens all day long with blue light that disrupts our bio rhythms. The caffeine throughout the day to keep us awake and the alcohol to relax us at night messes with our bio rhythms. This all creates a vicious cycle which can lead to weight gain, loss of mental clarity, feeling emotionally drained and decreasing our general health and immune system.

    We can take steps to help improve our quality and quantity of sleep.

    • Avoid heavy evening meals and crowd out late-night snacking with yoga, journaling, reading, connecting with loved ones, a hot bath or calming herbal tea.
    • Limit sugar and caffeine intake
    • Avoid or limit alcohol
    • Remove electronics from your bedroom, charge your phone in a different room in the house and make a time that your phone goes to “do not disturb”. Make your bedroom a cozy sanctuary
    • Reduce light and sound exposure by using black out curtains to limit light coming in, use a fan for better air flow and white noise, keep your bedroom at a cool temperature (below 65)
    • Create a bedtime routine. Go to bed and wake up at similar times to help get your body in a regular rhythm
    • Do a breathing activity such as the 4-7-8 breath to help you calm your mind before going to bed or if you wake up in the middle of the night to help you get back to sleep.

    Is Dairy Good For You?

    Research has now shown how dairy is not good for you. Especially industrialized dairy. In fact, people that have have more dairy are linked to increased hip fractures! There are better ways to get calcium. Our bodies actually absorb calcium better in a plant based form. Some examples of these plant-based forms are arugula (try Winter Potato Salad) chia seeds or sesame seeds (tahini – ground sesame seeds) Industrial dairy should be completely taken out of your diet. Industrial dairy or CAFO (Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations) cows are fed with no nutrition and if they are not getting good nutrition, then you aren’t getting any good nutrition from their milk or cheese. There are many reasons for removing dairy from your diet such as inflammation, growth hormones, pesticides, it increases inflammatory skin conditions and acne. To learn more about why you should stop eating dairy listen to Dr. Mark Hyman’s podcast.