Simplify Food Choices: The End or the Beginning?

I had multiple people ask me why I gave myself a clean eating challenge. My main goal was and is this: for my health, and for my family’s health. I didn’t do it to lose weight or fit in a certain dress size. I didn’t do it with hopes to fit back in my pre-kids jeans (those days are long gone. A 30 year old who has had 4 kids does not need to be in a size 0 blue jeans). I did this for my health, and from there flowed different objectives I wanted to accomplish.

I wanted to be more mindful of what I put in my mouth. Many times I felt like a hypocrite (as I should) because I would deny my kids ice cream, but then bust out a pint when they went to bed. I noticed there were times I just drifted towards the pantry, not even because I was hungry, but just to see if something caught my eye… almost like I was treating food like entertainment. I realized I wanted to change my mindset about food: I want food to be enjoyable, but I also want it to serve a purpose. I want food to fuel and heal my body.

I wanted to create better habits. I mentioned in the beginning, so much of what goes in my mouth does so out of habit. What I also realized was so much of what I make is also habit. I’d like to think of myself as a pretty healthy person, but I have to admit I got a little lazy when it comes to preparing lunches. Most days when I pack my kids’ lunch it’s a peanut butter sandwich and a piece of fruit. Not terrible, but not amazing. I realized I need to work on lunch, and plan on buying a few containers that would be conducive for them to take veggies and hummus to school instead of relying on breads to fill them up. Please help! What are some of your favorite containers for your kid’s lunch box?

So, the results… Do I feel better? Sure, but I can’t say I notice a drastic difference. Now, this could be because I ate healthy about 70% of the time, or maybe I need to do this for 90 days or longer to notice a huge shift. But, I do feel better. It’s easier for me to wake up in the mornings (mostly) when my alarm goes off at 5:00AM (another habit I’m starting). I’m also pooping more. I go about twice a day without any effort, so that’s nice. I did lose about 4 pounds, also nice. I’m convinced I’m still addicted to sugar and bread because I still think about both often. Although, I don’t miss dairy… which is kind of funny because I used to tell myself I think I could easily go vegan if I didn’t have to give up cheese.  

What’s next for me in my food journey? I honestly am not sure. I’m doing more research, which mainly means watching a ton of YouTube videos (my favorites right now are Kris Carr and Dr. Axe which is kinda funny because they have 2 different views) and Netflix documentaries (Hungry for Change and Food Matters will rock your world) while I’m washing dishes and doing laundry. I do think I’ll be vegan one day. I’ve already made small steps in that direction, and I think that’s how it will happen: one small step after another instead of stopping all animal products cold turkey (I had to add that pun in there!).

Ok, I need some feedback while I’m still on the fence about where to go from here. What’s your food philosophy? Why did you choose your path?

Holy BOGO: Free Wild Orange AND Breathe

Holy BOGO, y’all! Let’s keep it short and sweet. Buy a doTERRA Petal diffuser, and receive Breathe and Wild Orange for free. Can you say awesome?!

petal-breathe-wo

Breathe essential oil is formulated to support your body’s respiratory system. Whether you’re struggling with a lingering cough, snoring, or need to open your airways, this is the oil for you. You can use this oil in the diffuser, and I like to use it at night when my kids are dealing with congestion. It really helps them breathe easy during the night.

Wild Orange is an oil I use every day. It’s my “happy oil.” You can’t smell this oil without smiling. It’s an instant mood uplifter. Combine with Breathe or Peppermint in the diffuser for an instant pick me up.

Don’t hesitate! Go to mydoterra.com/amandagerber to take advantage of this offer. Two hours left!

Disclaimer: I am not a medical professional. I’m simply speaking from experience using these oils for myself and family. 

 

Wednesday doTERRA BOGO: DigestZen & Marjoram

Obviously, I have had a heck of a day since I’m just now at almost 9:00pm getting around to posting the BOGO of the day. But, you’ll forgive me, right? So, I’ll be quick about it. Today only if you purchase doTERRA DigestZen oil, you’ll receive a free bottle of Marjoram oil. Amazing!

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Now, DigestZen saved my life about 127 times while I was pregnant with baby Sarah. During my third trimester my heart would burn every time after eating, which would then be followed with lovely burps that would burn as well (I know, very ladylike). I was miserable, but then I started using DigestZen in a veggie capsule after each meal. Y’all, it was like the skies opened and angels sang down heavenly tunes. I had so much relief, and in return got much more sleep at night, because it had gotten so bad I was waking up at night. Moral of the story: If you need any sort of digestive support, DigestZen is your best friend.

Now, I’ll be honest, Marjoram I don’t have as much experience with, but when I have used it, I liked it. I like to pair it with Peppermint oil and use for aches and pains. It’s great after working out or if you’ve been doing lots of manual labor, like getting a garden ready that you’re super excited to blog about soon. It’s a good one to have in your arsenal when your muscles are crying out to ya!

So, don’t miss this opportunity. Go to mydoterra.com/amandagerber and as always, feel free to reach out to me with any essential oil questions! Now, I’m gonna enjoy this glass of ginger kombucha while my kids are sleeping. Good night!

*The statements haven’t been evaluated by the FDA. Check with your doctor before using essential oils.*

Minty Fresh: Spearmint and Peppermint

As promised, I come to you today to reveal today’s doTERRA BOGO. *Drum roll, please.* Today if you buy 1 bottle of Spearmint get 1 bottle of Peppermint oil FREE. Remember, this deal will only last one day so get it while it’s hot! Speaking of hot, be advised that these oils may be too “hot” to apply straight on to those that have sensitive skin. You’ll want to dilute both of these oils for younger kids, and those with sensitive skin.

bogo-spear-pep

Spearmint is a great oil to have in your arsenal. You can use Spearmint topically (dilute when needed), internally, and aromatically as well. It was be used aromatically in your diffuser to uplift the mood in the air. It pairs lovely with Tangerine oil, and other citrus oils. Spearmint is also helpful at assisting you at releasing negative emotions and beliefs. You can use spearmint topically to support a healthy digestive system. You can use spearmint in your cooking as well, whether it’s just adding flavor to your water by adding a drop to your glass or using it in sauces and salads.

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Peppermint is an essential oil I never run out of in our home. We use it daily. My kids don’t respond well to seasonal changes, and when the watery eyes, coughing, and runny noses start I blend Peppermint with Lemon and Lavender and apply it daily. My husband takes that exact combination in a pill form every day, especially when he is spending lots of time outdoors. If you need a pick me up in the morning, diffusing Peppermint and Wild Orange helps to perk you up. That combination was a life saver for me when I was pregnant and not drinking caffeine. It really helped to wake me up in the morning! You can also use Peppermint to help with digestive issues by rubbing some on your stomach, or taking a drop of two internally. The uses for Peppermint are endless!

What are some of your favorite uses of these oils? Comment below and share with us!

FREE doTERRA Oils: Day 1

Do you love the health benefits of essential oils? If you’ve never experienced the positive effects of essential oils before, now is the time to try them. doTERRA is having a BOGO sale all week long. Every day they are featuring a new BOGO deal, and the BOGO will change daily. So, the deal you see featured today, will only be valid through today only, so act quickly. If you are not currently working with a doTERRA Wellness Advocate, I would love to help support you and get oils in your home. Now, let’s see what doTERRA is offering today!

Today’s BOGO is buy a 15mL of OnGuard ($42.67 Retail/$32 Wholesale) and receive a 15mL of Lavender ($28 Retail/$21 Wholesale) for free. I love these two oils, and they are wonderful oils to have in your home, especially if you’re just getting started with essential oils. So, if you have a wholesale account, you’d be getting both of these oils for only $32!

og-lavender-bogo

doTERRA OnGuard is a proprietary blend that contains Wild Orange, Clove, Cinnamon, Eucalyptus, and Rosemary essential oil. OnGuard is designed to support your immune system. This was actually the first oil I got introduced to, and I’ve been hooked every since. You can use this oil topically, aromatically, and internally. (Side note: doTERRA is the only brand of essential oil I would trust enough to use on my kids, and I advice everyone to do your research when purchasing essential oils.) I personally used this blend when I had a sore and scratchy throat. I rubbed the oil along my throat, massaging my lymph nodes, and I also used 1 drop of OnGuard in hot water with honey and drank it like a tea. I was amazed at the results I had, that I ended up buying an entire enrollment kit that month.

I enjoy using OnGuard daily on my entire family to help support our immune system, especially during the winter months. For my children (5 years old and under) I dilute this oil with doTERRA’s Fractionated Coconut Oil because it is a hot oil, and can be too warm when applied directly on children. We also have it in a spray bottle with water, and we use it as a natural hand cleanser every day. We use it to clean our homes too! I love that I’ve been able to eliminate traditional (and toxic) household cleaners and hand cleansers.

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Now, Lavender essential oil is an amazing oil to have in your home. Lavender can be used aromatically, topically, and internally. Many of us are familiar with the traditional use of lavender for sleep and relaxation. While this is true, it also has so many other uses as well. You can use this oil to help reduce skin irritations, and it’s amazing when paired with melaleuca for these purposes. We have an “Owie Spray” in our home that we’ve used for bee stings, ant bites, stinging nettles, and rashes.

Lavender can also be used to soothe sore muscles. I like to pair it with peppermint before and after a workout, and it really helps with the post workout soreness. We love using this oil in our homes, and my kids have been known to ask for “the purple oil” whenever they get a boo-boo.

Are you interested in purchasing today’s BOGO? I would love to help you get started using these oils. I provide my team with additional education once you’ve received the oils, and I make myself available to when you need additional support. I’d be honored to help you on your journey towards natural solutions for your health. Happy Monday!

To get started on my team go to mydoterra.com/amandagerber

Have you used essential oils in your home? What are some of your favorite ways to use oils?

Simplify Food Choices: Not So Simple

Simplifying food choices is proving to be not so simple. I was pretty strong until now. I’ve stocked my pantry with rice cakes instead of bread, I hadn’t wanted sugar in days, I don’t even think about dairy anymore… And then Valentine’s Day happened.

My two oldest boys came home from school with a bag full of goodies. Today all 3 boys came home from church with another bag full of candy… and chocolate. I do miss chocolate, y’all. And then I did it. I bypassed my usual routine I do to fight sugar cravings, and I ate a pink heart shortbread cookie. Then I ate a chocolate candy (to which I thought, These aren’t as good as I remember), and then I ate another chocolate candy hoping it would be as good as I remembered. It wasn’t.

chocolate

Then I was mentally beating myself up the rest of the evening. Y’all, I can’t do that anymore! And I’m not talking about the chocolate candy here… I’m talking about beating myself up for eating the chocolate candy. I am not a failure for eating the cookie and candy. I made a poor choice. So what? Move on, sister. By all means, don’t degrade yourself for it!

Why is it so easy for me to criticize myself for making the wrong choices, and yet it’s so difficult to give myself a pat on the back for making the right choices? Geez, I conquered the temptation yesterday of eating all the sweets, I haven’t had a flour tortilla in 17 days (which is a miracle in South Texas. Tortillas are life, y’all), heck even making the choice to eat fruit this morning instead of the cookies that were mocking me. I didn’t give myself a thumbs up for that. I need to do that more often. Focus more on the positives, and less on the negatives.

As I get ready for bed, I am excited for a new day. A new day where I can make one healthy choice after another. That’s how change happens. One step at a time. One choice at a time. One small action at a time. This time I will recognize the change taking place, and I’ll give myself a mental fist pump, high five, or chest bump with each nourishing bite. Because I’m worth it.

Let’s encourage each other. What changes are you taking to better your health?

Warm Kale and Mushroom Salad

It was just there. Staring at me. In all its mac and cheese gloriousness. It was saying Eat me. Eat the mac and cheese. I’m cheesy, I’m gooey, I’m somehow organic even though I came out of a box… I’d been having this argument with myself all morning. I fought with the flour tortillas that I used to wrap my sons’ tacos in, I stared longingly at my husband’s toast that was soaking up the yolk of his egg, and I argued with Annie’s Organic Cheddar shells and cheese. And I won, y’all. I thought for sure I’d be defeated, but I wasn’t, and I came up with a yummy warm salad to combat my hunger after defeating the mac and cheese.

I looked in the fridge, but I didn’t want your typical cold salad. I instantly came up with this simple, but delicious warm salad. The best part? It only took 10 minutes from start to finish. You need to try it, because it will change your life, or at least your vegan lunches.

kale-and-mushroom-salad

Ingredients

1/4 cup of sliced red onions

6 sliced mushrooms, your choice

2 heaping handfuls of chopped kale

2 tablespoons of coconut oil

Salt, pepper, and garlic powder to taste

Directions

1. Slice and chopped the veggies while heating up the coconut oil

2. Place the sliced onions in the pan. Season with salt and pepper.

3. Once the onions are translucent, add the mushrooms.

4. Once the mushrooms are softened, add the kale.

4. Sprinkle with garlic powder while the kale is softening, and add more salt and pepper if needed.

5. Enjoy your masterpiece and give yourself a pat on the back for turning down the mac and cheese.

Notes:

1. This recipe serves 1 person. Double or triple the recipe as needed.

2. Use this as a base for your warm kale salad. Get creative with your add ins!

3. Consider adding other seasonings like red pepper flakes or smoked paprika.

4. If you’re not a vegan, top with crumbled gorgonzola cheese.

5. If you’re not vegan or vegetarian, cook chopped bacon with the onions.

Try it out, and let me know what ya think! And help me out, what’s your favorite vegan lunch?