Nourish Your Body

5 Reasons Why Portion Control Works

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About four years ago I learned about the portion control containers. These containers were meant to show me how much food from each food group I was eating. They helped me see which food category I lacked in and which food category I was overeating.

What I learned was that as a vegetarian I was eating too many carbohydrates and not enough protein; this includes plant protein. These rainbow-colored containers help you add more flavor to your food without adding calories.

Below are 5 reasons why portion control works for everyone.

Autumn Calabrese Quote
  1. You may be eating too many healthy foods. Have you ever thought that it was wrong to eat too many healthy foods? Well, it turns out that too much of anything isn’t good for you; this includes water. When you eat too many healthy foods of a particular category, your body doesn't respond well. It craves nutrients from other foods, and your body ends up being out of balance.

  2. You may not be eating enough. I was astonished at the fact that although I was eating a lot, I actually wasn't eating enough. I needed to eat more veggies and plant protein to keep my active body awake. Although I was eating healthy, the food containers helped me visually see how much more food I needed to be eating.

  3. You may be overeating your favorite foods. Of course, we all have our favorite foods, but if we only at pasta, fries, or cheesecake, our bodies would be lacking in essential nutrients that other foods have to offer. We would not be performing at our highest potential because our body would be lacking in nutrients.

  4. Eating unbalanced leads to lethargy, brain fog, and much more. When we don't eat foods that nourish our bodies, our bodies begin to react in various ways. For some, it may be acne, eczema, and skin irritations. For others, it may be weight gain, brain fog, and lethargy. Just because one may be eating a bag of chips of day and not gaining any additional weight doesn't mean the chemically processed food isn't doing any harm. Trust me I know this one from experience.

  5. You feel full and nourished. When you eat healthily, you have more energy. You're not always hungry...which leads to eating foods that are not good for you. They are just filling in for a craving because you're not eating enough or you're not eating the right types of foods.

All in all, when you use these fantastic rainbow containers, you're able to see how to put together a healthy meal that is meant to nourish you.

Are you interested in learning more about these rainbow food containers?

7 Ingredients You Should Avoid in Your Processed Foods

Food Ingredients to avoid

Many of the foods we eat are processed. However, the issue isn’t if whether we eat processed foods or not; the issue is if we eat chemically processed foods. You see some foods that are processed contain ingredients that are not food. This non-food ingredients are toxic to our bodies and over time show how harmful they are.

In today’s blog I’m going to list seven ingredients that are added to our foods that do more harm than good over time.

  1. Synthetic Pesticides: Farmers use pesticides to kill insects that feed off the crop. There are organic/safer pesticides and synthetic pesticides. We want to stay away from synthetic pesticides as much as possible. Synthetic pesticides have been linked to thyroid disruption, which can lead to weight gain. You can also purchase foods without pesticides at your local farmer’s market. They’re cheaper than organic foods because they don’t have the organic label.

  2. High-Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) and Artificial Sweeteners (i.e., aspartame, saccharin, etc.): HFCS is found in many food ingredients, including bread, crackers, soda, and so much more. HFCS makes you fat, and makes your insulin level spike. Artificial sweeteners are also bad for weight, and are known for slowing down your metabolism and craving even more sweets. Look for ingredients that have real sugar over artificial sweeteners and HFCS.

  3. Trans Fats: Trans fats are found in most processed foods, and have been linked to heart disease and heart attacks. Instead, make sure the product contains real food oils like olive oil, avocado oil, and coconut oil. Never purchase any food with cottonseed oil. Cotton is not food.

  4. Artificial and Natural Flavors: Artificial flavors can contain petroleum ingredients. Natural flavors are a bit of a mystery because they can be some chemicals like excitotoxins, which can lead to strokes, Alzheimer’s disease, migraines, fatigue, depression, obesity, and Parkinson’s disease.

  5. Food Dyes: Food dyes are typically artificial, and are also made up of petroleum ingredients. Some even have insect parts! Food dyes may contribute to hyperactivity in children, skin issues, asthma, and allergies. The worst ingredients are yellow #5, tartrazine (E102), yellow #6 (E110), citrus red #2 (E121), blue #2 (E132), red #3 (E127), red #40 (E129), caramel coloring, and blue #1 (E133). Again, look for real food ingredients.

  6. Dough Conditioners: Dough conditioners have been used by bakers for years because it makes the bread fluffy and appetizing. Unfortunately, these conditioners may contain human hair, duck feathers, and even yoga mat chemicals. Avoid bread that uses these ingredients: amino acid L-cysteine, azodicarbonamide or DATEM, potassium bromate, diglycerides, and monoglycerides. Instead, purchase bread-like products like Food for Life’s Ezekiel bread or Canyon Bakehouse’s gluten-free bread.

  7. Monosodium Glutamate (MSG): MSG is a flavor enhancer. This ingredient may cause headaches, migraines, vomiting, asthma, heart arrhythmias, depression, skin rashes, itching, nausea, and at times, even seizures. This ingredient is found in some processed foods like chips, frozen dinners, salad dressings, canned foods, and more. This ingredient is labeled in many different ways, including the following names:


    ·      Glutamic acid

    ·      Glutamate

    ·      Monopotassium glutamate

    ·      Calcium glutamate

    ·      Magnesium glutamate

    ·      Natrium glutamate

    ·      Anything “hydrolyzed”

    ·      Any “hydrolyzed protein”

    ·      Calcium caseinate

    ·      Protese

    ·      Sodium caseinate

    ·      Yeast extract

    ·      Torula yeast

    ·      Yeast food

    ·      Yeast nutrient

    ·      Autolyzed yeast

    ·      Gelatin

    ·      Vetsin

    ·      Ajinomoto

    ·      Umami

Knowing what’s in your food will help you make better healthy decisions that will improve your overall wellness.

Meal Makeover Boot Camp Express

7 Foods to Boost Your Healthy Glow

7 Foods to Boost Your Healthy Glow

Nutrition is key to our health including energy, strength, and skin health. When you improve the way you eat, you can see a wonderful change to how you feel and how your skin looks and feels. In this blog post, you're going to learn about twelve foods that will improve health, skin, and hair. There will be two colors from the rainbow so keep a look out for that.

Cherries: Cherries are a great way to cleanse the liver. They promote healthy hemoglobin and are also considered to be anti-cancerous. Eat cherries as a snack or add them to a smoothie.

Papaya: Papaya is a tropical fruit that is high in enzymes and vitamins A and C. Papayas help nourish and support healthy eyes and skin. Remove the seeds from a papaya and add berries to the middle, drizzle it with honey for a delicious breakfast. You can also cut up a papaya into cubes, drizzle with honey for a delicious snack.

Kimberly Snyder Quote

Mango: Mangoes are delicious tropical fruit. However, in a perfect climate, they can grow in the coastal mountains of California. Mangoes help with reducing stress. They are also a great fruit to eat before going to bed in order to get a restful night.

Spinach: Spinach is rich in vitamins C and E, and beta-carotene, which converts to vitamin A a powerful anti-aging vitamin. Vitamin A helps prevent wrinkles. Spinach also includes manganese, calcium, magnesium, zinc, folate, and selenium.

Berries: Berries of all colors are full antioxidants, which help fight free radicals. Berries also have traces of Omegas 3, 6, and 9, which help nourish skin cells.

Eggplant: Eggplants contain fiber, potassium, vitamin C and B6, red-blue flavonoid plant pigment called anthocyanin. Eating eggplants are known to help with reducing blood pressure, anemia, diabetes, and improving heart health.

Potatoes: Potatoes are a wonderful vegetable that has been given a bad rap for a long time. Potatoes themselves are healthy but when they are fried toxic oil, then they become unhealthy. The skin of the potato is the most nutrient dense part. The skin is full of amino acids, proteins, and phytochemicals. Potatoes are rich in vitamin B6 and lysine, which is a powerful weapon against cancer.

I'm only mentioning seven foods for this blog. The fact is that there are hundreds if not thousands of foods out there that come from the earth that are meant to nourish you and bring you health and beauty. Incorporate foods of different colors in your meal and see how your energy, health, skin, and hair improve.

Watch the video below where I talk more on the subject.

7 Tips to Age Gracefully

Age Gracefully

As we all know, aging is a part of life. How we age is in part up to us. Of course, there is genetics that we have to consider. However, genetics isn't everything. How we live our lives will help shape how we age. Like whether or not we smoke, drink, exercise, or take daily walks. All of our lifestyle habits will impact how we age, not just our genetics.

Below are seven habits that you can incorporate into your life that will help you age gracefully.

Diana von Furstenberg quote
  1. Eat Whole Foods: Forget diets! Diets don't work! Eat real foods like rice, apples, eggplant, etc. and make nutritious meals out of it. Eat foods that will do good for your body and health and enjoy mealtime.

  2. Exercise: Find a workout program that you like and do it. Exercising keeps your body youthful and vigorous. It keeps you looking radiant and helps you maintain a healthy and feminine physique. As we age, it is essential that we continue to work out so that our muscles don't atrophy because that makes us weaker.

  3. Drink 70-75 oz of water: Water is an essential nutrient. It helps flush out toxins, lubricate our joints and keep our skin plump. When we don't drink the adequate amounts of water our skin dries up, it's harder to have bowel, and that keeps toxins in our body.

  4. Use Safer Skincare: What you put on your skin is just as important as what you eat. What we put on our skin can irritate our skin, cause rashes, give us headaches, and itchiness. I've had to deal with a lot of less than adequate skin care. Some skincare works but is not good for my health, and other skincare is good for my health but doesn't work. Make sure the skin care you're using. The European Union has banned more than 1,500 harmful ingredients in skin care products, while here in the U.S. we only ban 30. When selecting a product, do your research and find out if the company is doing its best to create safer skin care products for you.

  5. Lower Stress: Stress is something that is so common that we almost see it as normal. However, normal doesn't mean healthy. If you are dealing with a lot of stress, take a step back and ask yourself why you're dealing with so much pressure. Are you doing too much? Are your kids throwing crazy tantrums every 5 minutes? Whatever the case may be, take a step back and see if you need to remove activities from your schedule, see if you may need some training on how to deal with stressful moments. We can improve how we deal with these situations. Also, add some essential oils to your day to help you breathe better during these tense moments.

  6. Sleep: Sleep is very crucial and yet I've heard people say something to the effect that sleep is a waste of time. Rest is a necessity so that our bodies can replenish your body. Sleeping does help in reducing stress, so it's important sleep at least 7.5-8 hours at night.

  7. Practice Gratitude: When we are grateful for what we have, we tend to smile more. When we smile, our mood improves. Smiling helps release cortisol and endorphins, which helps reduce blood pressure, increase endurance, reduce pain and stress and helps strengthen our immune system. Practicing gratitude helps increase our happiness, which in turn improves our health.

Aging is a part of life, and there is nothing we can do about it. However, how we view aging is our choice. How we decide to live our lives is our choice. What's great about getting older is that "beauty" is less of an issue but who you are as a person becomes more important and valuable.

Watch the video below to learn more.

Why I Wrote Meal Makeover Boot Camp

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I started writing Meal Makeover Boot Camp in October of 2017. I honestly, just started writing. I didn’t know how but I knew this would end up being a book. I had a lot to share. There is so much confusion about what to eat and how much to eat.

These questions were not a topic just two generations ago. I mean, my grandmothers never worried about portion sizes, their micros or macros. They never spoke those words. They just knew that food had to be real, natural, and tasty.

Mirley Guerra Graf Quote

My goal in writing this book was to go back to basics and learn how to eat for nutrition and pleasure. Food is meant to nourish you and enjoyed.

However, putting together a proper meal was always kind of a challenge for me. I knew how to eat a decent dinner, but breakfast and lunch lacked nutrition. So I started to research and read many books on the food.

I learned how to drink green smoothies for breakfast. It was totally weird at first, but once I got the hang of it, I never looked back. Next, I learned how to put together a nutritious lunch. My lunches always lacked nutrition. They were weak. I mean, I didn't get any energy out of them.

As I learned and put in practice everything I was learning, I realized that my energy levels were improving, my skin was brighter, and I just wanted to share everything I learned! As I put together this book, I realized that no book was like mine. Everyone talked about numbers and fancy terms, but no one simplified breakfast, lunch, and dinner. No one simplified these meals. So I did.

I hope that when you read this book, you will learn how to put together a proper meal that will nourish your body and make you smile.

For Smooth Skin, Eat Spinach

Spinach is one of my favorite leafy greens. I especially love it raw. I'm not a total fan of it cooked but I will still eat it anyway. I love it's crisp and fresh texture. It's virtually tasteless when it's raw. 

How do spinach benefit my health?

  • Spinach help people who have low iron.

  • Spinach is full of vitamins and minerals.

  • Spinach also has a good amount of protein. Remember Popeye?!

  • It's very good for your eyes and liver

  • It also helps reduce inflammation

Who should consume spinach?

  • Everybody can benefit from spinach unless you're allergic

  • Anyone with low iron.

  • Anyone looking for an alternative to meat protein

Spinach Benefits

How will spinach improve my skin?

  • Spinach contains vitamin A, which helps prevent wrinkles

  • It also contains antioxidant vitamins C and E

  • Spinach also helps fight free radicals

  • It contains beauty minerals like manganese, calcium, magnesium and more

  • lots of fiber and protein

What are the best ways to consume spinach?

  • You can eat in salad

  • You can eat it cooked, which helps you absorb some of the vitamins easier

  • You can eat it as part of smoothie

  • Also, make sure to add some type of vitamin C food like lemon or strawberries to help you absorbing the minerals

In the comments below, let me know how you use spinach. If you don't consume spinach, do you plan on doing so now? Let me know! 


  1. Hart, Jolene. Eat Pretty: Nutrition for Beauty, inside and out. San Francisco: Chronicle, 2014. Print.

  2. LSnyder, Kimberly. The Beauty Detox Foods: Discover the Top 50 Beauty Foods That Will Transform Your Body and Reveal a More Beautiful You. North Sydney, NSW: Harlequin Enterprises, 2013. Print.