I have read several books in my life, but there aren’t many that I would say all of you should read.

Jen Sincero is a success coach and author with a great sense of humor, and really knows what she’s talking about when it comes to this life stuff.

You Are A Badass is the self-help book for people who desperately want to improve their lives but don’t want to get busted doing it.”

The chapters that resonated with me the most were:

“Give and Let Give”: on the benefits of giving, and if you give to the world, you will receive in return.

“What are you doing here?”: on finding our purpose in the world

and…

“I know you are but what am I?”: on not worrying what people think of you.

Now, this isn’t the extent of my love for this book, but please, do yourself a favor and read it. It will get you to re-think your ways, bring more positivity into your life, and love who you are even more.

Recommend? —> yes. For everyone. Male or female, seeking or content.

Price? —> about $8.

Where can I find it? Amazon!

As always, happy reading!

xx,

M

Ps: here is Jen’s website if you’re interested 🙂

Maca is an old, more recently discovered superfood full of antioxidants and amino acids. And guess what? It’s a plant (surprise, surprise). It’s difficult to pinpoint the flavor of the fine, tan powder, but one of my best friends describes it as “slightly nutty, a little bit sweet.” – needless to say, we love it. Everyone should add this superfood to their pantries for an all natural nutrient boost to yogurt, cereal, and smoothies.

IMG_1459.JPG
read all about it!

This smoothie in particular can help if you’ve been thinking about chocolate all day but know you should resist the temptation of chocolate ice cream. I can assure you, this will satisfy your craving and make you feel a lot better than the excessive fat, sugar, and calories that ice cram provides.

Ps: it’s vegan, gluten free, and dairy free.

Y O U  W I L L  N E E D:

  • 1 large frozen banana
  • 1 c. unsweetened plant milk
  • 2 tbsp powdered peanut butter
  • 1 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp ground maca powder
  • 1 tsp unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 1 scoop neutral/vanilla protein powder *optional*

…and all you have to do is blend until everything is creamy and combined into a homogenous mixture.

IMG_0051

You’re going to want to try this one for yourself. Share your thoughts!

xx,

M

First off, Happy National Nutrition Month too all my fellow healthy foodies!

As many of you know, I am almost finished with a degree in community nutrition which credits me to become a Licensed Nutritionist in my home state of North Dakota (and enables me to apply for licensure in other states) once I graduate. (Complete list of states in link at bottom of page from the American Academy of N&D).

Because this month celebrates dietitians & nutritionists and everything we do for the field of health, I am sharing with you why I chose to purse a degree in nutrition. I’ve wanted to be a doctor for as long as I can remember but we’ll save that story for another day. However, because I am pursuing medicine, I often find myself explaining why I’m currently studying nutrition but still want to go to medical school. Here’s my story!

During my sophomore year of high school, I was required to take a health course. My classmates and I were taught the standard, “don’t abuse alcohol, don’t smoke or use drugs, use two forms of birth control.” Along with those important components of health, we were also taught about a healthy lifestyle through exercise, practicing a healthy mindset, and that of proper nutrition. I was intrigued when we talked about the MyPlate guidelines and how adequate nutrition affects a athletic performance – reasons I still love nutrition to this day. But what really got to me was watching a few documentaries in class.

One of the documentaries was on adopting a whole-food, plant-based diet that proved regression of several chronic diseases such as hypertension, heart disease, and dramatic weight loss of those suffering with obesity. This blew my mind. As a 16-year-old, I had no idea how important diet and overall nutrition was.

The other documentary, which many of you have seen, was SuperSize Me. Morgan Spurlock documents eating McDonalds for every meal for one month in duration. He experiences first-hand the effects of fast food through gastrointestinal illness, elevated blood cholesterol, and a rapid, unhealthy weight gain. (If you haven’t seen it, you should). Find it here:

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0390521/

Being a knowledge-hungry high school student as well as an athlete, these films sparked my interest and inspired me to change my then moderately-healthy diet into a diet that had me feeling better and enhancing my athletic performance. Through this process, I found myself becoming more and more interested in the field of nutrition and why these things make your body work so well. It was amazing to me that if you feed your body right, it works even better that you could ever imagine, and ultimately, you are in control of your health. I wanted to share this with others.

My junior year of high school approached and I began my first part-time job: a dietary aide in the hospital. I worked with several nutrition & dietetics students and began talking to them about their field of study (Nicole, if you’re reading this, I’m talking about you)! It was very apparent that these students were passionate about their future careers. I did my research in schools and programs, and from there, I knew I was going to purse a bachelor’s degree in nutrition. Now, my degree nearly complete, I haven’t thought twice about it.

What does this have to do with medical school? If you are planning to apply to medical school like myself, you may pick any undergraduate major to complete your 4 year degree in; as long as you complete the prerequisites required for medical school (AAMC) and take the MCAT. It is recommended applicants major in a field of study that they are passionate about andI am so grateful I will have a bachelor’s degree in something I love.

So overall, why nutrition?

1. The top 2 causes of death in the United States are heart disease & cancer (CDC). Both have a strong correlation with diet and can reversed through medical nutrition therapy and prevented through nutrition education. If we continue to educate our country, the prevalence of these chronic diseases may be lessened, and our country may live longer and have a better quality of life overall.

2.   I love all things food, nutrition, fitness, and feeling well. Being educated on what our bodies need to feel all these things, I hope to lead through example for my future clients and patients.

3. Nutrition is a fairly new scientific field. We as students and practitioners are always learning new things about the effects of certain foods, nutrients, and diseases through dietary intake. It’s progressive, new, and exciting to be a part of.

I, like many others, am eager to see the progression of our country’s overall heath through the effects of proper nutrition. It is apparent that we as a country are becoming more progressive in health trends and *not to brag BUT* my generation is spreading the word about living healthy lifestyles through social media platforms promoting nutrition, fitness, and healthy living – it’s quite amazing!

Let’s keep a good thing going!

Thanks for reading, and green smoothie cheers to my fellow nutritionistas! Happy National Nutrition Month!

IMG_1102.JPG

xx,

M

Sources:

https://students-residents.aamc.org/choosing-medical-career/article/admission-requirements-medical-school/

https://www.cdrnet.org/vault/2459/web/files/Licensurelawsregulations.pdf

https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/fastats/leading-causes-of-death.htm

“Let food be thy medicine.” -Hippocrates

Hello, everyone! This past week has been wonderful. I have hardly thought about school, and as much as I love learning, stepping away for a few days has been the best thing I could ask for. Now that I’m recharged, I am ready to finished my 6th semester of undergrad, strong. 🙂

So where was I?

When asked what my plans were for spring break, and being told I was flying to Las Vegas, I got the common response of “VEEEEGAAAAS!” Yes, Vegas is known for being “Sin City,” but coming here for the second time with one of my best friends, we had different plans. Last year, we walked all over the strip and discovered places we wanted to return to, and others we wanted to explore even more and that’s exactly what we did! Want to know how I did Vegas? Or if you are interested in all the food? Keep reading!

DAY ONE:

Before getting here, Koryn & I FaceTimed for over two hours the night before deciding what we should bring with. The weather forecast giving us some foreshadowing to a gorgeous week. The entire week here was predicted to be in the mid-80s and not a cloud in the sky. Boy did we luck out – it’s March, people. The majority of our packing lists included swimsuits, shorts, tank tops, and sundresses. We did well.

Processed with VSCO with t1 preset
not bad!

When we landed and got checked into our resort around dinner time, we hit the pool as soon as we could (don’t worry, we wore sunscreen). After feeling like we hit heaven prematurely, we headed to our favorite restaurant from last time, Buddy V’s. It’s located in the Venetian (an Italian-themed resort), and has many options for meals. I enjoyed Madeline’s Whole Wheat pasta with veggies. One thing I wish we had realized when we made our reservation is just how long it would take us to walk to the Venetian from the Monte Carlo (we were nearly late for our dinner reservation, but trust me, it was worth the fast-paced walk). Another thing to note about Buddy’s is the croutons. Koryn & I shared a caesar salad so we could reminisce on the warm, risotto croutons.

 

fullsizeoutput_1e3f
koryn’s photo, her credit 🙂

Find it H E R E:

https://www.venetian.com/restaurants/buddy-v-ristorante.html

After dinner, we walked to the Bellagio to explore before getting on the tram. To our surprise, we found a gelato shop ran by an Italian family at Cafe Gelato. My friend Koryn got cappuccino gelato and I got pistachio. It reminded me of the endless amount of gelato I had whilst in Italy myself…

Processed with VSCO with t1 preset
pistachio heaven

Find gelato H E R E!

https://www.bellagio.com/en/restaurants/quick-eats.html#/Cafe%20Gelato

DAY TWO: 

It was one of the best Mondays I’ve had in a long time. We woke up and hit the gym for a quick workout before we stocked up on fruits & veggies at the grocery store. It was 85 degrees before noon so we took advantage of the pool. Can we just take a second to reflect on how amazing the sun feels when you live in North Dakota? Ok. Anyway. After getting cleaned up, Koryn and I headed back to the strip and explored some more resorts and walked the strip (outside). New York New York is like walking through just a smaller version of the Big Apple, so I’ve been told.

The restaurants within the building feel as if you’re outside; restaurants that emulate street food, American food, and many places to find shakes for dessert. Koryn and I couldn’t decide where to eat this time! We tried Broadway Bar & Grill and sat in what felt like a patio. We shared a salad, mozzarella triangles, and fresh cut french fries. Healthy or nutrient dense? Nope.  But what about dessert? Neither of us had been to Shake Shack so we gave that a whirl. Zero regrets.

DAY THREE:

Another 85+ degree day spent by the pool in the morning with SPF of 50 and not a cloud in the sky. No sunburns, minimal tan lines we are in great shape. Let me take a second to talk here. Koryn and I got to nerd out a little this Tuesday. Within the Luxor resort is where you can find the Bodies exhibit. Being both of us have taken gross anatomy and lab, we have experienced the marvels of the human body and been fascinated each time we walked out of class. Bodies was a briefer version of our previous knowledge, however, our minds were blown away when we got to the embryonic section of the exhibit.

There were various embryos beginning at 4 weeks of life all the way up to 24 weeks. Each embryo showed immense progression of developmental features of the fetus and the bones and cartilage were specifically preserved to portray the development. The embryo at 8 weeks was smiling. We were mind-blown!

Processed with VSCO with t1 preset
a book review to come 🙂

After we had our fair-share of anatomy for the day, we walked back to the Monte Carlo for dinner – 800 degrees pizza. I’m sure many of you have had wood fired pizza, but this stuff is amazing. The ingredients are fresh and their specialty pizzas are something I could rave about.

Many of you know that I don’t choose to eat pizza unless it’s really good, and if you’re with me, it’s worth it. 🙂 I got the Bucca, which is a rosemary base, grilled onions, butternut squash, bacon, mozzarella, and I asked for fresh basil. I had plenty of leftover pizza for lunch the next day! 

IMG_1380.JPG
I wish you could at least smell this pizza.

After finishing dinner, and feeling spontaneous, Koryn & I decided to check out the Cosmo. We discovered how gorgeous the inside of the resort is during spring break last year, but just walked around in awe. This time, immediately, we found The Juice Standard, a fresh-pressed juice shop that makes juice, smoothies, and has plenty of other vegan options. I had done my research on where to find an acai bowl in Vegas, only having seen them on my fellow food bloggers’ Instagram feeds. We got to sample a few different juices and Koryn decided on the “Bee Royal” consisting of apple, lemon, and extra ginger. I got an acai smoothie with granola, coconut flakes, banana, pumpkin seeds,cashews, and more smoothie than I have ever had before.

 

IMG_1382.JPG
you know a smoothie is good when it’s served with a straw and a spoon.

Find The Juice Standard here:

 http://www.juicestandard.com

We enjoyed our treats in the Cosmo itself, but noticed there was an escalator going upward, so up we went! We found a rooftop pool proceeded by “are you two here fore the event?” “uhhhhh, no…” So for for a short, unintentional time, we discovered one of the views of the Strip from the pool at the Cosmo. We can only wonder what the event was!

We got on the early shuttle back to our resort and came to realize it was still in the mid-70s. We spent about an hour in the hot tub, and walked back up to our room. Koryn fell asleep at 9, and I fell asleep at 10. Yes, you read that right. We’re still unsure of how this transpired, but that’s ok. This trip was about feeling refreshed!

DAY FOUR: 

Another day in the sun with fruit for breakfast and not a cloud in the sky. Before we headed for the pool this time, we took about a mile and a half walk to Dunkin Donuts, yes, I know they’re everywhere. But guess what? They’re not in North Dakota so it’s a treat 🙂

Processed with VSCO with t1 preset

We spent some more time in the sun, still reapplying high SPF sunscreen, and enjoyed every second of not thinking about responsibility. Once we got cleaned up for the day, Koryn and I wanted to hit a few of the stores on the strip. Fashion Show Mall is located north of Caesar’s Palace and is, well, how Vegas does everything, huge. After a long evening of hitting the shops, we had salads in Caesar’s Place on our way back to our resort. I had a grilled Chinese chopped chicken salad with cashews, cabbage, grilled chicken, and microgreens on top.

IMG_1408.JPG
salads are the best when they don’t consist of lettuce alone. 🙂

Wait, I forgot. On our way past Caesar’s Palace, in the front entrance of the mall was a Pressed Juicery stand. Seeing my Instagram friends in California rave about this juice, I tried two different kinds – Greens 2 & Vanilla Almond. No wonder everyone loves these.

IMG_1414.JPG
a great way to get some greens in while away.

Koryn and I finished dinner and headed back to our ride back to our dessert, but we wanted to check out the creamery within the Monte Carlo. We sprinted back from the tram at Bellagio to make it, but it was closed. We were sad over ice cream… there’s always tomorrow. 🙂

 

IMG_1390
The Juice Standard

DAY FIVE:

Our last full day here in sunny Nevada. Koryn and I made breakfast and enjoyed the sun until mid-afternoon before getting ready to head back to the Strip for the last time. I had been looking for a place that serves poke (in Japanese, “to cut”). For those that don’t know, poke is basically deconstructed sushi. I got salmon, cucumber, avocado, spinach, crushed peanuts, and eel sauce.

 

Processed with VSCO with t1 preset
my Hawaiian friends were right about this one 😀

 

http://pou-kei.com – check it out!

Koryn and I walked to Caesar’s to do some more shopping and at the end of the day, we returned to the creamery that had closed on us the night before. Koryn & I shared a cookie ice cream sandwich as an honorary last hoorah. Nice work, Vegas.

 

IMG_1437.JPG
again, zero regrets!

To our dismay, we ended the day by packing up our belongings (and hoping they don’t exceed the 40 lb weight limit) for our flight the following day.

DAY SIX: 

Our final day in the sun. This time, we were blessed with a mid-day flight to enjoy a little more time by the pool before checking out. And off the the airport- just like that, spring break 2017. If you were wondering, my bag weighed 39.5 lbs, and Koryn’s weighed 40.0. St. Patrick was on our side today 😉

This trip was relaxing and refreshing – exactly what college students need in the middle of the semester. I am so happy to get home to Stella in my own bed. Tomorrow will be full of meal-prep, a kick-a** workout, and a lot of histology. Who is with me?

Hope everyone’s spring break was as delicious as mine!

IMG_1410
Vegas, we’ll be back!

 

xx,

M

 

 

This is a food trend that I hope never dies out. Whether decide to make it a meal or an afternoon snack, this is my procedure – I have it down to a science 😉

You’ll need:

  • 1 egg or 2 egg whites
  • 1/2 an avocado
  • 2 slices bread of choice
  • salt & pepper & Italian seasoning

 

Procedure:

  1. Place toast in toaster, but do not toast yet!
  2. Heat skillet on medium high heat with olive oil
  3. Add eggs and salt & pepper
  4. Cut avocado in half and remove pit
  5. Mash avocado in pit with a fork (save yourself another dish to wash)
  6. NOW toast your bread!
  7. Add salt & pepper, and Italian seasoning and continue to mash until well combined
  8. Flip egg(s) to continue cooking (or cover if you want it over easy)
  9. Spread avocado onto toast
  10. Cut egg/egg whites in half when done
  11. Top avocado toast with cooked egg
  12. Top with shredded parmesan cheese, red pepper flakes, and fresh cilantro if you so desire!

 

Try it and share!

xx,

M

PS, is anyone else as excited as I am about the fact there is now an avocado emoji?! 🥑

 

 

 

I currently work as a tech in the emergency department. My role in the ED entails lots of stocking, transporting, assisting, and transferring, with unpredictable acuity, census, and whatever else the emergency department brings. I’m happy to share some things I’ve learned over time that have helped me in my role along the way!

 

one: ALWAYS BRING SNACKS.

I am usually hungry so I can’t stress this enough. Keep a protein bar in a scrub pocket and eat it when you can step away for 5 minutes! I always keep a snack, a few sticks  of gum, and chapstick in my scrub pockets. Drink lots of water, too! (this proves to fight fatigue)

Processed with VSCO with t1 preset
RX Bars fit perfectly in scrub pockets 😉

two: THINK COMFORT

Wear something you won’t want to take off as soon as you get home. Good scrubs help – my favorite are Figs (of course). Wear a jacket that you can take off if you get too warm. Wear a long sleeve if you’re always cold. MAKE SURE YOU HAVE COMFORTABLE SHOES.

Find my favorite scrubs here!

https://www.wearfigs.com

three: SMILE.

When you’re stressed out, it’s easy to take out your frustration on other people; especially those that are requesting your full attention. Instead, smile. Science proves that if you physically force yourself to be happy, you will start to feel happy emotionally. Cheeeeeeese 🙂

four: PRACTICE GRATITUDE.

Thank your coworkers for what they’ve done to help you. Thank your patients for being… patient, and thank their families for their time. Ask what you can do to help anyone around you. It makes your time go faster, and their time more positive while they’re there.  Remember, you are working to make some of their worst days better. Be grateful for that opportunity in itself.

five: REMIND YOURSELF WHY.

Chances are, if you have a job like mine or in the healthcare field in any aspect, you have a love for mankind and you have a passion for helping people on some of their worst days. It’s humbling in itself to know that alone. Remind yourself of this. Your job is to better yourself through the service of others, learn as much as your can, and learn to love the process. If that’s not what you’re in it for, you might be better off finding something else that better suits you!

 

Remember, positivity is key in any scenario! Good luck in every endeavor your future shifts bring to you!

 

xx,

 

M

 

 

 

 

There always seems to be 20,000 things going on at once, am I right? Exams, workouts, meals to prepare, someone’s birthday, group projects, meetings, papers, calling your grandma, volunteering, working, planning, and sometimes sleeping.

I am guilty of anyone else who takes on many roles but, I able to do everything I do because of one simple phrase I tell myself:

“BE PRESENT.”

How is this achieved? Start by making a list of all the roles you currently hold:

Student, daughter/son, brother, sister, friend, teammate, grandson or granddaughter, boyfriend or girlfriend, employee, president, teacher, etc. Now take a look at your list and rank which of the roles you feel you are best at and which you could work on. Why are you better at some and struggle with others?

You are capable of being good at each of the roles you hold, no matter how many (reasonably), if you focus on the role you’re in at that very moment.

What do I mean by this?

The emphasis is not stressing about the future but rather focusing on the present.

  • When you are in the middle of studying, minimize distractions. Take a 10 minute break every hour, and don’t check your phone, emails, or anything else that may distract you. Keep your phone halfway across the room, and don’t pay attention to anything else around you.

 

  • When you’re at work and you are stressed out about an event you have tomorrow, don’t think about tomorrow; focus on your job. Learn from every experience you have. Tomorrow will come regardless, and you will be off work later, which is when you can prepare for the next day.

 

  • When your friend or family member is talking to you, put your phone away. Do you know how it feels when you’re trying to talk to someone, they act like they’re listening, you finish your story, and they ask you what you just said? It doesn’t feel good. Don’t be that person. Give your valued friends & family your attention. Sometimes all a person need is for you to be an active listener.

 

  • When you feel like breaking down from stress, focus on taking 15 minutes to clear your mind. Take a walk, call your best friend, jam out. Don’t think about your stressors in that time. Focus on clearing your head and preparing how to tackle the task ahead of you.

 

Each experience we are faced with holds learning opportunities, and if you are impatient, you might miss out on them. The future will come regardless; stressing about things that are to come is a waste of your energy you could be investing in what you’re doing in that moment.

Manifest your energy into the task at hand, and you will be successful in whatever you choose to do.

 

xx,

M