As a retail store owner, the holidays are a super busy, fun and exhausting time of year and with Atlanta's January market (where I buy for the store all year) following it right away, I feel very tired and stressed by mid-January. After putting all my effort into balancing the growth of Dogwoods and raising my children over the last two-and-a-half years, I put my own health on the back burner and have vowed to change that in 2019.
I've made several changes and am feeling so much better! I joined Orange Theory and I LOVE it! My goal is to go at least three times a week and so far I've exceeded that goal. Have you tried Orange Theory yet? I highly recommend it for a fun and varied workout. I love that it shows my heart rate throughout my workout and how many calories and fat cells I've blasted. You finish the class feeling like you accomplished something!
Although I've always been a healthy eater, I also want to be more intentional of what and how much of food I'm eating. I buy mostly organic and try to avoid processed foods, and cook balanced, colorful meals for my family. I have several family members in the medical community and they have been preaching a whole food plant based diet for years (a.k.a. vegan).
Though I appreciate the benefit and cancer prevention of eating whole food plant based, it's not a perfect way for my family to eat all the time and I think like any diet or way of living, it's not for everyone. So, we've decided to replace some things we eat with whole food plant based and balance it with proteins that come from healthy sources like antibiotic free chicken, some wild caught fish and the occasional grass-fed beef - and of course lots of veggies.
We watched the documentary Eating You Alive (very eye opening!) and signed up for forksmealplanner.com which is a great site where you can select whole food plant based recipes that work for your family. One easy recipe that is working for us and replaces our traditional (and not healthy) weekend pancakes, is Oat Pancakes with Berry Syrup (recipe below). We love it and hope you will too!
Oat Pancakes with Berry Syrup
FOR THE PANCAKES
3 cups oat flour (I buy Bob's Red Mill)
2 cups unflavored plant milk or oat milk
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
FOR THE BERRY SYRUP
1/2 cup organic frozen mixed berries, thawed
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
1. MAKE BERRY SYRUP
In a high-powered blender (I use our Vitamix) or food processor, puree thawed berries and maple syrup until smooth.
2. MAKE BATTER
In a clean high-powered blender or food processor, combine oat flour, plant milk, bananas, cinnamon, and vanilla. Puree until smooth.
3. COOK PANCAKES
Heat a nonstick pan or griddle over medium heat. For each pancake, transfer 1/3 cup batter on the hot pan (using a measuring cup to ensure equal size and cooking time). Cook each pancake until small bubbles form on outer edge and in the center. Flip pancake and lightly cook other side for about a minute. If you have any trouble flipping, give it a few moments - a crust must develop before the pancake releases from the pan.
4. ASSEMBLE & SERVE
Serve pancakes drizzled with homemade berry syrup and topped with slivered almonds and fresh fruit, if desired.
Hope your family enjoys this healthy switch - have a great week!