Newbie Meal Prepper

20160228_135925This year I’m trying to practice meal prepping more. I only meal prep on weekdays. Weekends are my cheat days so anything goes.

Why I meal prep?

– To ensure I eat healthy all week.
– To keep me from being lazy and getting fast food during the week.
– To make sure I don’t skip any meals due to lack of time.
– To save time during the week to do other things.

What types of foods do I usually eat when I meal prep?

I’m on an endometriosis diet plus I’m trying to eat cleaner. So, I try to get in a balance of protein, carbs, and vegetables with each meal. Some of my favorites foods to use are:

Proteins –20160124_153118
Chicken Breast
Ground Turkey
Seafood (Salmon/Tilapia/Shrimp)
Eggs

Carbs –
Brown Rice
Potatoes
Gluten Free Pasta

Vegetables –
Asparagus
Broccoli
Lettuce
Tomatoes
Carrots

Snacks –
Fruit
Nuts
Dark Chocolate
Peanut Butter

20160215_151148How do I prep my meals?

Fridays are when I put together my menu and grocery list. My menu includes breakfast, lunch, dinner, and 3 snacks. I try to eat 6 times a day because I’ve been working out and trying to gain.

On Sundays I do my grocery shopping and prepare all my meals. I work on one meal at a time. I usually start by separating my snacks into Ziploc bags for each weekday. After that I prepare lunch for the week. I usually prepare the same thing for the whole week. I bought a bunch of plastic containers to separate my meals for the whole week so they will be ready to pack for work. For dinner I don’t usually divide into separate containers because I don’t always complete the whole meal the same day. I will prepare my carbs and vegetables in advance but depending on what I’m preparing my proteins are prepared on a day by day basis. I like my chicken breast, salmon, and tilapia cooked fresh each day. I don’t prepare breakfast in advance because most breakfast foods I like to eat fresh.

Results of meal prepping?

– I now eat less fast food
– I don’t miss meals
– I save money
– I have reached my post surgery weight gain goals

Salmon Fried Rice

20160215_152007I wanted to try something different for lunch and add more salmon to my diet at the same time. I ran across a recipe for Salmon Fried Rice and altered it to my liking.

Ingredients:
1 Salmon Fillet
2 cups Cooked Brown Rice
2 Eggs
1/4 cup Green Onions
1 tsp Liquid Aminos (Soy Sauce substitute)
1/4 tsp Garlic Powder
2 tbsp Earth Balance Buttery Spread
1 tbsp Lemon Juice (optional)
1/4 tsp Salt
1/8 tsp Pepper

Instructions:
Cook brown rice according to package. Set aside.

Scramble eggs. Set aside.

In a skillet on medium heat add butter, garlic, and lemon juice.

Season salmon with salt and pepper. Add salmon to skillet. Cook 4-5 minutes on each side. Break salmon into small pieces and add green onions. Depending on thickness, continue cooking until salmon is thoroughly cooked.

Add rice and eggs.

When all ingredients are mixed well, add soy sauce. Mix it all together. Serve immediate.

 

Coconut Oil Pulling

20160218_173741Most of us in the natural hair community have heard of the benefits of coconut oil for the hair. But, have you heard of oil pulling? I discovered coconut oil pulling by accident on Pinterest and decided why not give it a try.

Coconut oil pulling is said to:
– Improve oral health
– Detoxify the body
– Increase energy
– Balance hormones
– Helps with better sleep
– Improves skin condition
– Decreases headaches
– Boosts immune systems
– Prevent heart disease
– Reduce inflammation.

Since coconut oil can be so hard and difficult to scoop out, I decided to make coconut oil bites to reduce the mess or excuses.2016-02-13 20.09.47

To create coconut oil bites, all you need is:
– Cookie mold, of your choice
– Extra Virgin Coconut Oil
– Peppermint Essential Oil

Melt the coconut oil (but don’t cook it). Scoop about a tablespoon of the melted coconut oil into each mold. Put one drop of peppermint essential oil into each mold. Refrigerate. Once the coconut oil is solid again you can place the bites into a glass container and set next to the bathroom sink or if it’s warm in your home keep them refrigerated.

2016-02-14 11.51.18How to use:
1. First thing in the morning before you eat, drink, or brush your teeth place a coconut oil bite in your mouth.
2. Chew bite until it melts.
3. Gently swish the oil around your mouth, pulling it in and out of your teeth for about 20 minutes.
4. After swishing around your mouth it is said to become toxic so spit it out in the toilet.
5. Rinse out your mouth and brush your teeth.
Do this 3-4 times a week.

I just started doing this on Monday so I haven’t noticed any benefits as of yet but I plan on continuing this practice. I’ll keep you updated. Some people complain of sore jaws or headaches from all the swishing, that’s why you should swish gently or reduce the amount of coconut oil you insert in your mouth. I suggest you do your own research before introducing anything new to your body or consult your dentist.

 

 

Pan-Seared Tilapia

Usually when I cook Tilapia I bake it in the oven. I have grown tired of baked Tilapia so I decided to try something different. I pan-seared it and served it with brown rice, boiled asparagus, and I love pineapple with my tilapia. Why did I wait so long to try this? It was awesome!

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Ingredients:

2 Tilapia Fillets
1/2 cup Gluten Free All-Purpose Flour
1 tbsp Olive Oil
2 tbsp Earth Balance Buttery Spread
1 tsp Garlic Powder
2 tsp Old Bay, divided
1 tsp Creole Seasoning

Directions:

Melt butter and add garlic powder. Set aside.

Season tilapia with Old Bay seasoning.

Place flour in a shallow dish. Add in remaining Old Bay and Creole Seasoning. Gently press each fillet into the flour to coat and shake off excess flour.

Heat olive oil in skillet over medium heat; cook tilapia in hot oil for 5 minutes on each side or until fish flakes with fork.

Remove tilapia for skillet and brush the melted butter and garlic on the tilapia. Serve immediately.

Quick and easy meal!

 

 

 

 

DIY Coconut Water Moisturizing Leave-In Spray | Natural Hair Rules!!!

Coconut water stimulates hair growth and adds shine. I like to use this recipe from Natural Hair Rules to moisturize on locs.

1/4 cup of Coconut Water

2 tsp Aloe Vera Juice

2 tsp jojoba oil

Coconut water is great for your hair and scalp.

Source: DIY Coconut Water Moisturizing Leave-In Spray | Natural Hair Rules!!!

FAQ’s About My Locs

Below are the answers to questions people frequently ask me about my locs.

How many locs do you have? I have 100 locs.20151212_170559

Did you start your own locs? No, I had a professional stylist start my locs.

How did you start your locs? My locs started as two strand twists.

How often do you wash your hair? Every 2-3 weeks.

How often do you retwist? I retwist every time I wash so every 2-3 weeks.

What method do you use to retwist? My locs are palm rolled.

How long was it before your hair began to loc? I think it was about a 1-1/2 before I started to notice budding.

Who maintains your locs? I currenly maintain my locs on my own.

How do you maintain your locs? I spray my scalp with apple cider vinegar an hour or two before I wash my hair. I wash my hair with Dr. Bronner Castile Soap. Do a final rinse in cold water. I retwist with 100% aloe vera gel. I moisturize 4-5 times a week.

How do you reduce frizz? When I wash I do a final rinse with cold water.

What do you retwist with? I just use 100% Aloe Vera Gel or I make a DIY Aloe Vera Loc Gel.

What do you use to wash your locs? I wash my hair with Castile Soap.

What types of oils do you use on your locs? Mainly Extra Virgin Olive Oil and coconut oil.

How do you moisturize your locs? I make my own Coconut Water Leave in Spray that can be used daily, using a mixture of aloe vera juice, coconut water, and essential oils. I like to Moisturize Scalp With Oils. I use a mixture of carrier oils (i.e olive oil, coconut oil) and essential oils (i.e lavender oil, tea tree oil).

Do you have any tutorials? Yes, check out our YouTube channel @naturalnessdotcom.

(Click on the hyperlink for more details to my answers)

If you have any other questions feel free to leave a comment below and I’ll add them to the list.

 

 

Locs Detoxing Deep Cleanse

Today is hair day and I decided to try a deep cleanse on my locs. Ingredients that I used included 1/2 cup of baking soda, 1/4 cup of apple vinegar, 1 tablespoon of sea salt, 1 tablespoon of lemon juice, and 4 drops of lavender essential oil. I filled my bathroom sink with water and added the ingredients. Then I let my soak for about 10 mins. I don’t use a lot of product besides aloe vera gel so I think most of what you see comes from sweating during my workouts and dry scalp.

20151212_100543

The ingredients used have many benefits to the hair.

Baking Soda is an alkaline product has antibacterial, antifungal, antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties. It clarifies the scalp removing extra product and impurities.

Apple Cider Vinegar destroys the fungus that causes dandruff and restores the pH balance of the scalp. It helps nourish the hair, giving it a shine and soft texture.

Sea Salt helps open the pores, improve circulation, stimulate cell growth and draw out toxins from the skin. Sea salt also helps accelerate the locking process because it dries out the hair and increases the friction between the hairs which leads to more knotting.

Lemon Juice has antioxidant, antibacterial, antifungal, and astringent properties that help improve the appearance and condition of your hair. It helps balance the pH level of your scalp and reduces excess oil secretion which causes dandruff.

Lavender Essential Oil has anti-inflammatory, antifungal,antiseptic, and antibacterial properties. Lavender oil is regenerative and helps promote hair growth.

Here is a before and after picture of the water I soaked my locs in, pretty gross!

PhotoGrid_1449946544509

This is the first time I have done a deep cleanse on my locs since I started my locs and it wasn’t too awful considering I’ve been locked for 2-1/2 years so I probably will not do it too often. I will maybe do a deep cleanse once or twice a year. Even though these products have many benefits they are also drying and I already suffer from a really dry scalp. Since I don’t use a lot of product in my hair I don’t think it’s necessary to do often.

Yara Shahidi’s Teen Vogue Natural Hairstyling Spread Is Everything – Clutch Magazine

I have loved her hair ever since she was a little girl on Imagine That with Eddie Murphy.

Yara Shahidi

Source: Yara Shahidi’s Teen Vogue Natural Hairstyling Spread Is Everything – Clutch Magazine

6 Ways to Refresh your Natural Hair & Scalp after a Workout | Natural Hair Rules!!!

Sometimes I hesitate to workout because I worry about my head sweating and it’s not good to wash your hair all the time. I never really knew what to do after a workout. I love essential oils, peppermint and tea tree are among my favorites. This is very useful information.

When it comes to working out, natural hair can have its benefits but a lot of women such as myself do a lot of sweating in the scalp when staying active. Sweat is pretty much water just and salt but over time this mixture can wreak havoc on your natural hair strands by drying out the hair, which can ultimately lead to breakage. For some women who are in the gym or working out 2-3 times a week or more, having to wash your natural strands after every workout may be impractical and inconvenient. So, what’s a curly girl to do? We got you covered with these 6 Tips to Refresh Your Hair and Scalp

Source: 6 Ways to Refresh your Natural Hair & Scalp after a Workout | Natural Hair Rules!!!

This Model Just Brought Natural Hair to the Victoria’s Secret Runway for the First Time

She looks so amazing! Black women continue to redefine traditional standards of beauty everyday by embracing their natural beauty and I love it.

“I told my agent I wanted to walk in the Victoria’s Secret show with my natural hair,” Borges told entertainment news reporter B. Scott, who posted on Instagram. “I was nervous, but I had to do it. When they said ‘yes’ I didn’t expect it, but I was so happy!”

Source: This Model Just Brought Natural Hair to the Victoria’s Secret Runway for the First Time

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