5 Nutrition Noshes and Wisdom Wednesday

Nosh One. Wisdom

We made it everyone!  Spring is was officially here on Monday, woo hoo!  Which is why it was no surprise that today it snowed!  Oh Iowa.... It is ironic to me how the first day of Spring correlates with a complete shift in my mindset. The sun is out longer, my mood is more on the positive side and I get a little adventurous vibe. I want to be more active, go explore, cook more, open windows and just start letting the party in. It is also the time of year I start "cleaning" and this year is a BIG cleaning adventure encompassing everything:  my home, my closet, my food, my emails, my music, my purse, my car, my everything. I cannot wait to share with you next week week what my cleaning looks like. But for this week, I am going to share with you the party. 

Nosh Two. Weekly Conversation

Sometimes I am surprised by gestures of giving. Not that I don't think I am worthy, just feeling all warm and fuzzy when someone does something so kind and thoughtful without a reason. This crazy, fun, something exhausting and empowering journey would be nothing without the undeniable kindness and support of the amazing people in my life. This microphone is a gift that makes the future bright, beautiful and damn exciting. I would love for you to listen to the conversations this microphone gets to hear by going to iTunes and picking one of the podcasts. 

You're just a click away:  Conversations with Anne Elizabeth

Nosh Three. Week in Review 

Pure sweetness and joy on my counter top. 

I was present with members of the Iowa Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and President Christy Frese when Governor Terry Branstad declared March National Nutrition Month!

I decided after an 8 year sabbatical, I would celebrate St. Patrick's Day with my friends this year.  It was fun starting off the day with cocktail club and a traditional Irish Coffee. Jason and Kevin whipped the cream by hand in a tag-team effort. It was delicious!  I have never had a traditional one and I highly recommend experiencing this cocktail at least once in your life. 

We headed to the infamous Irish bar, Sully's where I enjoyed a non-green beer.  The only thing missing in my Coors Light is my straw. 

My friend Justin quickly pointed out that is what the picture was missing, so I decided the picture was missing him and I!

After Sully's we headed out into the kick-ass weather of around 65 degrees and made our way to downtown Des Moines, where we accidentally missed the parade but watched some basketball at the Hoops and Hops on Cowles Commons and Iowa Craft Beer Tent

I lost my straw but I had these gems with me. Lucky me!  Cheers to the next time St. Patty's falls on a Friday! Then I might be ready to partake in the festivities again. 

Nosh Four. Workout Playlist of the Week

The start of Spring deserves a worthy workout playlist:  Signs of Spring Workout Playlist of the Week by Anne Elizabeth on Apple Music

Nosh Five. What I Love Right Now

Avocados! Well I love them all the time but avocados are very hip and cool right now. If you haven't tried them in a while, you need to do it. Right now!  There are many different ways to eat avocados and I love them any and every way. My favorite is guacamole but I can eat A TON of it and avo's are still high in fat, so it's best not to over do it. Once of my favorite guac preparing tips is to make it with Siggi's Dairy plain yogurt.  Not only do you decrease the amount of fat you eat but you increase the protein and calcium. 

For a simple guac:  1 container of plain Siggi's yogurt, 1 large ripe avocado and 1/2 cup of any salsa (fresh or jarred) of your choice.

Mash avocado and mix in the yogurt. Blend in the salsa and enjoy with your guacamole vehicle of choice.  My current vehicle is unsalted sweet potato chips by Terra. This does make 2 servings, so find someone sweet and share. 

I am LOVING this picture. And you know what day it is!!!! My mom is in Palm Springs on vacation and riding a camel (with my Uncle John on the back), so I had to include it for things I love right now. You are awesome Ruth!

May your week be like the smile my mom has on her face!



Holiday! Celebrate! Wisdom Wednesday

This giant jug of happiness has been one of the best things that has ever happened to me in my life. For the past 2 years, I have been putting in my daily joy into my jug and every February 17th, I take time to review all the amazingly wonderful things that have happened over the past year. I don't always put happy but I always write something encouraging growth, change, challenge and just pure happy. This year, it was more jam packed than the year before. I am going to go out on a limb and say this has nourished my soul and my being more than I have ever imagined. I end each day with a positive thought, who knew what an impact it would have on me. I sleep better, I feel better, I have more energy and most importantly, I am proud of and happy with my life. A reminder like this, is beyond priceless.  Time to start filling your jug.

Weekly Conversation

 My conversation today is with Chef Andrew Kintigh

As registered dietitians, we love food and know exactly how food functions in our bodies and many of us incorporate cooking and recipes into our profession. Enter, Chef Andrew. As a registered dietitian, I value the expertise the professionals who work with food daily, which is knowing the science behind cooking. Chef Andrew is someone I have gotten to know over the past couple years and I value him and his education because he knows more about cooking than I do.  Chef Andrew shares his journey and a few tips and tricks for the dietitian who loves to cook.

Birthday Weekend in Review

I took off on a jet plane and headed to sunny Florida for a little birthday weekend o' fun and to do a little podcasting along the way with someone I am very excited to share with you in a couple weeks!  I was wisked away from the airport by some great friends with a goodie bag of all things I love in pretty gold and hearts and pink and chocolate and popcorn and vodka and lemon and ahhh, so sweet. We hopped on A1A Beachfront Avenue and drove down the coast. It was gorgeous. It was rejuvenating. It was inspiring. It was exactly where I wanted to be.

We ended up at Cocoa Beach for a day and felt the sand between our toes, with the cool ocean breezes running through our hair and had cocktails at sunset. Cocoa Beach is a great beach town to walk around, clean and the beach is full of open space. I would highly recommend as a great place to visit.  

After a day of exploring and since I have been on an oyster adventure this year, I had to add Florida to my list. We took a little stroll from our hotel and went to a low-key open air bar called The Thirsty Oyster looking for shrimp cocktail, oysters and beer. Of course I needed a few french fries too!  We tried both the cooked and the raw and the raw were much better and my favorite. We ordered 3 different times because we couldn't get enough. The bar was nothing fancy but the atmosphere was cool and laid-back. 

The next day we continued our travels by Vero Beach, Jupiter, West Palm Beach and Delray Beach to Boca Raton. We stopped in West Palm Beach to cruise around the city, see the shops and sit and listen to the ocean at nightfall. There is nothing like the ocean at night. It is my favorite lullaby. 

As we made our way back from our little beach getaway, my last couple days were spent in Orlando. No, not Disney. Been there done that, will probably not do it again. Instead, we spent an evening downtown Orlando which I have never been. 

I entered downtown through Church Street where there is an historic train station and a stunning development in the heart of the city. There is cool vibe and a variety of dining and drinking options, including movies, theater and living spaces which is close to the Amway Center. We ventured further into the downtown area and walked around the infamous park in the middle of downtown, Lake Eola

I adored our walk around this park and the lake. At night, there are people everywhere with a playground for kids, amphitheater and swans.  There were paddle boats, but that is not my jam thanks to my cousin Lindsey and a stint in Boise. I am sure I will revisit that story someday. Anyway, you must escape from the high-rises and inner city feel by heading for a walk at Lake Eola. 

After we stopped at a few local watering holes of which I do not remember the names of because I was indulging in a few libations, one of my friends told me from the start of the evening we would end up going to Gringos Locos for the some of the best tacos called the Double D's.  Yep, these bad boys were pretty delicious. I think it is the kick ass queso in between the shells. I ordered 3 and I ate 2 1/2. And I had chips and quest too. And I may have had a very large beer in a brown bag. 

The next day was full of hydration, a day out on the lake in the boat, mimosas and a lovely quite dinner at home of filets, caramelized onion mashed potatoes, a dreamy kale salad, with wine, great company and conversation. And if this wasn't enough, 2 of us ladies were celebrating being badass Februarians and were treated to our favorite desserts of cheesecake and key lime pie. I think I should celebrate birthdays with other more often because a variety of dessert is involved. We ended the night in the hot tub and 5 hours later, I was headed back to Iowa. What a great birthday. 

Workout Playlist of the Week

In honor of the year I was born, here is a playlist of songs created 41 years ago to get your sweat on!

What I Love Right Now

I love this hilariously awesome gift. Now I can brush my teeth to the sweet sounds of the Biebs and snuggle up with him by the fireplace every night thanks to Jason. 



Registered Dietitian Day Wisdom Wednesday!

National Registered Dietitian Day. I never thought this day would exist back in 1997 when I decided that was what I wanted to be when I grew up. I am so happy it does.  Registered Dietitians (RD's) are my favorite people and let me tell you why...

The individuals who enter this profession do so with abandonment. The abandonment of being selfish. The very moment they decide to make this their purpose in life, they dedicate their lives to science and giving of others.  They have one title but carry so many responsibilities. They become counselors, educators, culinary experts, problem solvers, navigators, scientists, mathematicians, investigators, insurance specialist, advocates, speakers and authors. Sadly, this is only a small representation and sadly they do not get the proper appreciation and deserved respect. Registered Dietitians do all they have in their powers to help others live the healthiest life they can through food, nutrition and science. 

The next time you have a question about nutrition, make sure to seek out THE expert. Search for a professional with the RD credentials. This RD cared about YOU enough to go through extensive schooling, training and testing to provide you with the most accurate nutrition information. They did not do some bullshit class online or have a semester of it in college and declared themselves an expert. They became the REAL nutrition expert through the required discipline and dedication to this field. 

So I ask you today, find a Registered Dietitian on this 8th of March and give them a big-ass hug for being an awesome human being. 

Weekly Conversation

My conversation today is with Anita Turczynski, RD, LD
Anita is a one of those people you meet who just radiates positivity both personally and professionally. It was interesting to know she initially majored in accounting in college. While she was navigating her future career plans and after shadowing a registered dietitian, she truly discovered her passion for nutrition. This lead her to an interest in food service nutrition and also a love for nutrition education with children in a public school system. She enjoys the variety of working in school nutrition and also seeing how nutrition education in schools really impacts nutrition at home.

Week in Review

It is always fun to see yourself published in another place besides your own blog!  This past week, I had a fun little article in the Des Moines Register about one of my favorite foods: avocados. If you are looking for something a little different than guacamole, this quick read will leave you with a fun and adventurous recipe that will tickle your taste buds. Promise!  

Then there is this amazing member of my tribe, Stacey. On March 1st, she brought a brand new human that never existed before into this world. I am in awe of my girlfriends and boss ladies who took on the craziest and hardest profession of being a mom, plus everything else they do!  I don't know if my old age has made me realize how hard it to bring a human into this world and then to raise them to be a good human.  Stacey, you are a rockstar and Finley is one lucky girl to have you as her momma.

Workout Playlist of the Week

Hell yeah it had to be food inspired for National Registered Dietitian Day!  Righteously Delicious. 

What I Love Right Now

I have decided to celebrate this past week with the perfect Registered Dietitian food. 

I am not kidding. Thanks to Hurts Donuts and Hy-Vee, I had donuts more than once this past week and I loved every bite.  No, I did not eat all of them in the pictures, I did share but this is probably why I love my job so much. I love being real. I love that my boss set a box of these donuts in front of me and I was happy to eat a chocolate glazed donut with toffee bits on it with out one worry of judgment. I love being able to tell a client who struggles with food addictions that I have mine too. We are human and it happens. We should not beat ourselves up and we should not have a bad relationship with food. When you start creating negative feelings about certain foods, it can lead to other issues which can be much harder to overcome.

I love food. I love eating food. These are 2 different sentences with 2 different meanings.

I love food for all the bizarre, sciency and intricate actions happening in our bodies after we eat. I love food because it may help prevent certain health conditions and may improve quality of life. I love food because it constantly starts conversations that matter.

I love to eat food because of how it gives me energy, endurance, brain power and strength. I love to eat food because it brings my heartbeats together at a table talking, laughing and sharing each others lives. I love food because it is art, it is a poem, it is a fond memory.  It is my mom's chocolate cake or my dad's chicken kiev.

I love food, I love eating food and I love being a Registered Dietitian. 



National Nutrition Month Wisdom Wednesday

Happy National Nutrition Month!  Every March, every Registered Dietitian I know, gets a little excited there is a whole month dedicated to what we are beyond passionate about: nutrition. I love nutrition. No seriously. I am not kidding.  I think it is mind-blowing how food is the fuel our bodies use for EVERYTHING!  When you are eating an apple, did you ever stop and think about how you are consuming the antioxidant Vitamin C and it is protecting your cells to help lower your risk of chronic disease? Or how Vitamin C plays a role is making collagen to aid in wound healing (hello paper cut) and to keep your skin healthy? This is exactly why I became a registered dietitian. I want to spread the message of all things wonderful about food and your health in the preventative stages, starting at birth. 

This month, I also sincerely want to celebrate my favorite people. Registered Dietitians are the most awesome professionals I know. I am inspired constantly of the intelligence, passion, devotion and purpose of my peers. This is why I wrote my book, this is why I do my podcast. I want to celebrate our profession and these kick-ass professionals. I want the world to recognize the importance of THE nutrition experts.  It is the Registered Dietitian Nutritionist. If you know one, give them some praise this month and especially next week on March 8th. It is their day and they are 100% worthy of a little celebration. 

Weekly Conversation

My conversation this week is with Jenny Norgaard, RD, LD

Jenny and I go way back to meeting each other during our internship and have shared many great experiences we still discuss and laugh about today, as well as a lifelong friendship.  She initially was going to go into nursing and decided after a conversation with a registered dietitian in her hometown, she was hooked. After experiencing a variety of careers in the dietetics field, Jenny currently feels at home and is very passionate about the preventative side of health and wellness.

Week in Review
Since I was away from home for a few days last week, gangster kitty missed me a little bit. I have been home for about a week now and she has finally stopped meowing constantly and feels comfortable leaving my side. Last week, not so much.

I enjoyed this moment of her softly laying her head on my arm and dreaming. Her little kitten paws were curling up and she was purring so it must have been a pretty stellar dream.

Now only if she would just quit shedding!!!!!

Last year, I was telling a co-worker that I would rather receive a bouquet of basil than a bouquet of flowers. I am pretty much basil's #1 fan and it is the gift that keeps on giving.

When I arrived at work last week, I have a lovely "Bouquasil" sitting on my desk, with yummy container of pesto and birthday card. My co-worker remembered. Complete kindness.

Let's just say, I have been eating it all week and it is almost gone. I made these fancy pizza's Monday with goat cheese and tomato sauce.

Workout Playlist of the Week

I am so excited for spring and had to put together a motivating March Playlist.

Listen to "In Like A Lion, Out Like A Lamb" Workout Playlist of the Week by Anne Elizabeth on Apple Music

What I Love Right Now

If you want to make a great tasting, quick and healthier pizza at home, you should give Golden Homes Ultra Thin Pizza Crusts a try. They have 2-3 packs of family and personal sizes which will accommodate anyone who is in need of a pizza fix. Thank goodness I had some in the freezer for my "bouqasil" bonanza!  Whole wheat, whole grain and protein options are available as well. I am a huge fan of the protein crusts. They get really crispy in less than 12 minutes and can hold a lot of toppings (my test for any pizza crust).

At Thanksgiving last year, I learned all about a supplement that every woman in my family was taking. How did I not know about this?  Collagen. I know I have been losing it rapidly when I gander into the mirror every morning and see my temples sinking in and my laugh lines, but I did not know you could help decrease the loss of it by using it daily. Not only is our skin made up of collagen but so are our nails, hair, joints and bones. This seems like a no-brainer!

It is available in pill form and in a powder. After much research, I opted for the powder. When you are looking for a collagen supplement, it is recommend for >3000 mg of both Type 1 & 3. I chose this one from Neocell.

Mix well with water and drink on an empty stomach and do not take with other protein-rich foods, because they will compete for absorption. It is tasteless so I have no problem drinking this at all!

I have only done this consistently for 3 weeks, so I will report back in 3 months to see if I notice a different. I would love a little less knee pain when I run as well as thicker hair and smoother skin. Can you help me with that collagen?  Please?!?!?! Thank you in advance!



Wisdom Wednesday

Price is not always about money and can be any kind of currency. Over the past year, I have truly realized that time is my biggest currency. In the past, I have spent my most valuable asset invested in worry, doing things I do not want to do, not nourishing my body properly with food and physical activity, taking on other people's problems, buying things excessively for no reason and being with people who did not value me like I did them. In reflection, life was just passing me by. Since then, I have realized why I need to live a life with intention and awareness. I have less worry, I am doing things I want to do, I am eating well and exercising, I am being present with people who matter, and I am finding I have more time than ever to do anything I want. 

What price are you willing to pay for a fulfilling life full of joy?  

Weekly Conversation

My conversation today is with Kathryn Thompson, RDN, LD

Kathryn is someone I have had the joy of collaborating with on different projects involving school nutrition and health. I remember the first day I met Kathryn and her smile and energy were absolutely contagious. As I have gotten to know her over the years, we developed a great friendship and I learned more about her journey to being a registered dietitian nutritionist. She has had an eating disorder and opens up about she realized she needed treatment. Her biggest influence in her decision to become a dietitian, was discovered during her personal recovery.  

Week in Review
Last week was Random Act of Kindness Week and I had the absolute joy to share kindness with my favorite co-workers and kindergartners at Wright Elementary School in Des Moines. We partnered with KIND Snacks and provided a healthy lunch to 38 kids and their amazing teachers Miss Schryver and Mrs. Jennings.

The kids had been learning about being kind to others all year around. KIND Snacks also share in this year long movement of being kind to others. I had to share this great message from the KIND Snacks website:

"This belief inspired us to start the KIND Movement - our mission to spread and celebrate kindness. Small act or big, we encourage it - from writing a thank you letter to someone who deserves it to volunteering with an organization you care about. Every day, our community (aka YOU!) brings us one step closer to our goal of making kindness a state of mind." 

As a registered dietitian, I find it important to share healthy food with a healthy message and KIND Snacks are a company I am proud to support as a member of their Nutrition Collective. Not to mention their snacks are delicious, have a great variety of flavors and all are full of nutrition. 

Workout Playlist of the Week

With the warm weather in Iowa, I was feeling some beachy, coastal vibes and memories of a few of my recent trips. When music brings a memory and inspires you to work on your fitness, it is a great combination. 

What I Love Right Now

With the intentions I have set for this year and wanting to increase my time, I reached out to Rebecca Lewis, registered dietitian for Hello Fresh to see if I could try out their meal boxes. With so many on the market, I was drawn to Hello Fresh because they do employ an expert registered dietitian which makes them great already. This happy little box of healthy food, arrived at my door on Monday and was patiently waiting for me when I got home that evening. Everything was fresh and the perfect temperature. Each recipe had it's own box, clearly marked with the name of the recipe and the exact measurements of each ingredient. I was excited to dive in and start cooking. 

The first meal was The Great Caper:  Cod Piccata with Couscous and Baby Spinach

The second meal was Do the Dukkah Chicken with Sweet Potatoes and Snap Peas

The third meal was Sugar-Sweet Pork Chops with Mixed Root Veggies

Are you hungry yet?  All 3 meals were very delicious and well balanced with nutrition. The proteins and veggies were fresh and I liked the flavor profiles of the each meal. I have never been a huge fan of cod, but Hello Fresh changed my mind with this great recipe. The serving sizes were exactly perfect for 2 meals and it was nice to have leftovers for lunch the next day. All the meals took less than 30 minutes to prepare, which is exactly my cooking attention span. It was nice to come home at night and have a meal planned and ready to rock in the kitchen. I plan on doing a this at least once a month, during those really busy weeks. I felt pretty fancy preparing this glamorous looking meals. 

If you want to give these delicious meals a try for yourself, go to Hello Fresh and using the following discount code FRESHFANSRD35 for $35 dollars off your first order. What are you waiting for?  It's totally worth it!