October 1st

Tomorrow is the 1st day of October.  How did that happen?  Where did September go?  For me it definitely FLEW by.  From having a busy work schedule, traveling to Virginia for a training for an upcoming Diabetes Prevention Program (more on that later), and celebrating National Yoga Month at various events, yes, September FLEW!  I'd like to say October is going to slow down but seems like it is going to be just as busy.  Although I will be taking a few days off, so there's always that to look forward to.  Ahhh yes, a little rest and relaxation.  I'm ready.

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A couple of posts back I talked about using the Instant Pot®.  The first recipe I experimented with was beans.  I’ve always wanted to make homemade beans and let me just tell you, my only problem was finding enough containers to store the beans (as I put some in the freezer).  They were phenomenal and so super easy to make.  I’m not here to convince you to buy an Instant Pot® (I’m not sponsored, but if they want to sponsor me I wouldn’t say no, ha!) but I will say this, they are quite convenient because they really are all the appliances you need in one – rice cooker, pressure cooker, slow cooker, and more!  I’ve made beans, yogurt, applesauce, pork tenderloin (and I don’t even eat meat!), sweet potatoes, soup…I mean what haven’t I made??  Dessert.  Note to self, make a dessert in the Instant Pot® and soon!  Let me know if you all want to see some recipes for the Instant Pot®.  I’ll be starting a new feature on the blog, where I’ll be starting to post my own recipes.  Yep, my very own recipes.  I’ve been reading blogs and cookbooks over the years and I finally started experimenting on my own.  I’m proud to say I’ve been doing a little creating over here.  So, recipes to come.  And some of those recipes will be with the Instant Pot®.  Just let me know what other recipes you might be interested in seeing!  Thanks in advance.  

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I was in Charlottesville, Virginia this past week for a training to be a lifestyle coach for the Diabetes Prevention Program.  We currently have our 2nd cohort finishing up here in Miami and we’ll be starting another cohort in Miami in 2019.  We’ll also be expanding to Broward County in 2019.  The Diabetes Prevention Program is a year long program aimed at changing lifestyle habits with both diet and exercise in order to prevent diabetes.  The original study done in the early 2000s showed a reduction in the onset of diabetes by 58% from participants losing 5-7% of their body weight combined with 150 minutes of weekly exercise.  Seems simple enough, right?  Changing lifestyle habits is hard!  If everyone knew it was this simple to help themselves prevent diabetes, don’t you think more people would be joining a program like this?  I’d like to think so.  So here’s my friendly PSA: 

If you or someone you know has prediabetes (never been diagnosed with diabetes) and is interested in joining a diabetes prevention program, message me.  I can give you more details and believe me when I tell you, it’ll be life changing. Promise.

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Just a few notes about my trip to Charlottesville – I definitely have the travel bug.  Traveling lets you see new things, experience new adventures, and more importantly allows you to grow richer.  As a young child I did travel a lot with my parents.  I’ve even lived in quite a few cities.  But the one area of the United States that I haven’t traveled is the Northeast, minus New York.  I’ve always wanted to see the leaves change colors.  Even though they weren’t yet changing just yet, there were a few trees here and there that were starting to change colors.  I definitely never imagined this Florida girl in an apple orchard (I only know mango and avocado trees).  But there I was, having an actual apple cider donut from farm to table apples.  Might have been the best donut I’ve ever had.  Seriously that good.  And as for other adventures on this trip, let’s just say that every Uber ride was an adventure.  Seriously glad I had my co-worker with me, because you might not believe some of the stories if there wasn’t back-up proof.  Next trip, Denver.  Stay tuned for more adventures to come!

The PSL (pumpkin spice latte) has been out for a few weeks now and all I’ll say is can we have a little less sugar and a little more pumpkin please?  Anyone who knows me knows that I’m on a mission for people to drink LESS sugary drinks.  And while I know the PSL is released in the fall and is only here for a few weeks, hear me out when I tell you that there will be a new drink in the winter that is sugar-laden as well.  So, I don’t have a problem with the PSL per se, but I do have a problem with the frequency that people have of consuming sugar-laden drinks.  Okay, rant over, back to the actual health benefits of pumpkin (which was my reason for even starting to talk about the PSL).  

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Pumpkin is a powerhouse when it comes to fiber.  One cup of canned pumpkin has 7 grams of fiber.  And while fiber may be known to help you go to the bathroom, it also helps reduce cholesterol, as well as helps you feel fuller longer.  Fiber factor.  And pumpkin has a ton. 

Pumpkin’s brilliant orange coloring comes from all the beta-carotene that pumpkin contains.  Beta-carotene is then converted to vitamin A in the body.  Vitamin A is essential for eye health and helps the retina absorb and process light.  A single cup of pumpkin contains over 200 percent of most people’s recommended daily intake of vitamin A.

Pumpkin contains a lot of vitamin A and vitamin A helps our bodies fight infections, viruses and infectious diseases.  So, if you’re looking for a way to ward off illness and improve your immune system, try including a little pumpkin in your diet.

Beta-carotene is not only great for your eyes and skin, but you know what else?  Fighting cancer, that’s what!  Research shows that people who eat a beta-carotene-rich diet may have a lower risk of some types of cancer, including prostate and lung cancer.  Think of vitamin A as kind of a cell defense squad.  Vitamin A is an antioxidant that acts as a shield for your cells against cancer-causing free radicals.

I’m glad the PSL brings attention to pumpkin every year.  My hope is that people start including pumpkin this time of year in other ways, ways that aren’t included with loads of sugar (and possibly fat, hello pumpkin pie).  Add some canned pumpkin to your overnight oats, roast pumpkin for a side dish, or even have pumpkin seeds as a snack.  The possibilities really are endless when it comes to adding that fall flavor to your dishes. 

And that’s a wrap September.  October I’m ready for you – birthdays, football, and Denver – let’s go! 

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