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Friday, January 15, 2010

Friday Friend Shout Out - Brahma Yoga Spa

This Friday Friend Shout Out is to Brahma Yoga Spa in Sea Girt, NJ!
When I first moved to Red Bank, I dropped in for a class at Brahma one morning and knew as soon as I got there that this was a place I wanted to teach yoga at! Luckily, I was able to join their staff and have been teaching the 5:30pm Hatha Yoga class each Friday night. I feel so blessed each week that I hold a class there. The studio is so beautiful!

Lisa Aquino, owner of Brahma Yoga Spa, is such a wonderfully pleasant person. She has an eclectic group of teachers who teach regularly at the studio, as well as special guests such as Wah!, Mahan Rishi Singh, Jacci Reynolds, Gurudev, etc., who come to host workshops, classes and events. Her spa staff is also exceptional, offering therapeutic massages, reflexology, hot stone massages and more.

Brahma has many exciting new events coming up in 2010, along with their own yoga teacher training certification program beginning this weekend. I am so proud to say that I'm a member of their staff!

Brahma is located at 1050 Ocean Ave. in Sea Girt, NJ. Please check out their site for more information and try to stop in for a class, workshop or spa treatment sometime soon!

Keep it fresh!
- Lauren

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

15 Tips To Improve Your Health in 2010!!

Each morning I check my email for my favorite daily digests. Some of my favorites are Ode Magazine (news for Intelligent Optimists) and the Natural News Insider from Health Ranger Mike Adams.Today the Health Ranger posted an article on 25 ways to improve your health in 2010. It's a great list. Rather than repost the entire article, I tweeked it Healthy Chick style listing our 15 favorite recommendations for a healthy 2010. Enjoy!!!

~ Ditch the sugary drinks! Replace carbonated sodas or soft drinks with tea or water.

~ Commit to eating at least one raw fruit (or serving of vegetables) at every meal.

~ Add just 5 minutes a day to your exercise routine. Don't have an exercise routine? Start with 5 minutes a day!

~ Speaking of exercise....Learn some yoga! Yoga is exercise for the mind, body and spirit that will keep you young by ensuring spinal flexibility! Join Lauren at Brahma Yoga on Fridays or Terra at Fair Haven Yoga on Wednesdays!

~ I know it's cold and snowy out, but do your best to get outside at least once a day to soak up a little sun!

~ If you don't already have plants in your home, get them! They purify the air and according to the principals of Feng Shui, a well placed plant can change your family fortunes and harmonize your life!

~ Eat more whole grains Try quinoa! It's a high-protein, low-carb "grain" that can easily replace rice or couscous.

~ Get a good water filter so you can stop drinking bottled water. We recommend Shaklee's Best Water system

~ Take time to pamper yourself!! Take a relaxing hot bath with epsom salts and soothing herbs like lavender. It will do wonders for your mind and your muscles.

~ Get a professional massage! Massage therapy is really, really healthy, and it's a great way to reward yourself for some of the other accomplishments you're making.

~ Take the time to be grateful for at least one thing each morning.

~ Make a point to get at least eight hours of sleep for 2-3 nights a week (or more, if you can). Most people are sleep deprived, and the health cost is enormous.

~ Start visiting local farmer's markets so that you eat more local food in 2010. You'll be healthier and happier as a result. New Jersey Farmers Markets usually open in May. Find one near you here.

~ Got a job you don't like? Quit it! Downgrade your lifestyle to live on less money, then pursue what you really enjoy. Follow your bliss and live the life you love!!!!

~ Make a decision to think of food as nourishment instead of entertainment. Eat what your body needs, not what your taste buds desire.

These tips are short and simple and will help keep you on track in 2010. Need more support than 15 quick tips?? If you want to learn how to cook healthy food, gain energy, lose weight or just stay motivated to live a healthy chick life, join the Healthy Chick Club! It’s an opportunity to benefit from health counseling in a small group environment. The first Healthy Chick Club will be starting at the end of this month and there are only 4 spaces left so don't delay!!

Keep it Fresh!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Vegan Quinoa Black Bean Quesadillas

I have a secret to tell you...I have a bit of a sick obsession with Mexican food. I could eat quesadillas for dinner every night and guacamole like ice cream for dessert. Unfortunately, the average quesadilla filled with cheese and pan sauteed with oil or butter isn't that healthy. But hark!!! I have found respite for my demon craving!

I recently ran into an old friend of mine from law school, Tracy McGuigan*. I mentioned my hunt for a healthy quesadilla recipe and low and behold she had one for me!!

Tracy revised the standard cheese filled quesadilla recipe and turned it into a powerhouse of protein and fiber by losing the chess and adding black beans and quinoa. Tracy took my unhealthy quesadilla addiction and turned it into a substantially healthy meal!

Quinoa is a whole grain harvested in South America. It's packed with 14g of protein per serving and contains a balanced set of essential amino acids, which makes it a complete protein source. Quinoa is also a great source of fiber and phosphorous and is high in both magnesium and iron. Next time you have a craving for Mexican, try Tracy's Vegan Quinoa Black Bean Quesadillas!

Vegan Quinoa Black Bean Quesadillas

1 cup quinoa, washed & drained
2 cups water
1/4 cup olive oil
Juice of 2 fresh limes
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 can black beans, rinsed
1 1/2 cups cherry tomatoes (108-oz pkg), cut in half
5 green onions, finely chopped
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
Salt & pepper to taste

Directions: Wash & rinse quinoa. In a saucepan, bring quinoa & water to a boil. Reduce & simmer, cover & cook until all water is absorbed, about 10-15 minutes. Let cool. In a small bowl, whisk together olive oil, lime juice, cumin, and red pepper flakes. Combine quinoa, beans, tomatoes, & onions in a large bowl and season with salt and pepper. Stuff mixture inside a whole grain wrap and sauté until lightly browned on each side. Top with salsa and sour cream (try Tofutti to keep it vegan!) and drizzle dressing over. Garnish with cilantro.

* Tracy is currently pursuing a Masters in Nutrition, is a graduate of JNA Culinary Arts and lives outside Philadelphia with her husband and children. She is currently working for Christina Pirello Health Education Initiative in grant development.

Keep it Fresh!