I’mPossible Project

Hello, everyone! I am thrilled to share something quite exciting with you. 🙂 Can you guess what it is? No? That’s okay–I’ll tell you!

The I’mpossible Project book has released for pre-order, and I am a contributing author! Interested in hearing my story as well as the stories of 49 other people working to break stigmas around physical and mental health issues? Pre-order today here! The book will release August 24, 2017.

G__preorder01.jpg

It was such an honor to write for this book. Writing always challenges me to examine myself then articulate this understanding of myself in the most pleasing and perfect prose; this is one of the reasons I love blogging!

In The I’mPossible Project, I write about my struggles with Lyme disease 😦 and how I discovered joy, purpose, and hope 🙂 despite immense physical and mental pain. The point of this book is to show “I am possible,” meaning there is hope in the (seemingly) hopeless, relief in the painful, and purpose in the pointless. Challenges strengthen our character and our minds and our hearts.

Don’t forget to pre-order your copy of this inspiring book filled with stories of triumph and success and resilience despite overwhelmingly challenging circumstances each of the authors faced. Happy reading!

Kendal Kooreny Meme preorder.png

Chocolate Chip Cookie Heaven

Who doesn’t love chocolate chip cookies? With their gooey, warm centers surrounded by a golden crust and melty chocolate chips, I’m drooling just thinking about them now.

Last week, I hosted a baking day with a friend, and together we discovered our new favorite gluten-free and vegan chocolate chip cookie recipe!

It is incredibly quick to whip up, and when the oven timer dings and you taste this recipe, you’ll understand why we love it so much!

Here’s what you’ll need…

  • 2 and 1/2 cups almond meal
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin avocado oil
  • 1/2 cup vegan honey (it’s made of apples!)
  • 1 cup dark chocolate chips (Enjoy life or Ghiradelli make good vegan options!)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Then start by combining the dry and wet ingredients separately, then incorporate them all together in a larger bowl. Roll the dough into 1/2-inch balls, and place the dough on a baking sheet covered lightly with oil or parchment paper. Bake for 7-10 minutes, cool, then share with your friends (or eat them all by yourself!).

Happy cookie making (and eating!) 🙂

Cabo Cuisine

Hola, mi amigos!

Soooo……

Recently I visited Cabo for some fun in the sun and, of course, yummy food!

I visited Flora Farms, an organic farm-to-table restaurant where the farm is the restaurant! It was my kind of heaven! You eat in the garden where the food is grown! It cannot get any better than this.

 

For my drink, I enjoyed an iced tea infused with lemon, lime, orange, and mint. I recently tried recreating this at home, and it was fantastic! Simply brew traditional iced tea, and throw in lemon and orange and lime slices as well as mint into the jar in which you store the tea. The longer the tea sits, the stronger the fruity taste!

For dinner, I dined on a rice and veggie dish which incorporated all the fresh vegetables picked from the garden that day. I also enjoyed a garden salad complete with an abundance of fresh and healthy vegetables.

 

The beautiful thing about this restaurant is that you can see the source of all the food you eat and can witness the transformation of the produce picked from the garden into beautiful, fresh meals.

Please enjoy the rest of these pictures, and if you vacation in Mexico, the deliciously healthy food and stunning view are worth any trek to this gem of a destination!

 

In The LymeLight

I’ve had health issues for years upon years, but my Lyme disease diagnosis is much newer information to me. Although I have had Lyme disease for over 10 years as my doctor has estimated, I was only diagnosed three years ago. More people and more doctors need to understand the reality of battling such a vicious, invisible disease, so I am partnering with LymeLight to share my story as a Lyme fighter during this Lyme Disease Awareness Month!

Check out my story here! 🙂

IMG_5434 (1).JPG

 

 

Life Update: College-Bound

Hi, everyone! Guess what?!

I’m going to college!

I committed to the University of California, Davis in the University Honors Program. Here I will double major in nutrition science and entomology. I could not be more thrilled to have found such a perfect home for the next four years of my life! I will relocate from Los Angeles to Davis this fall.

Now, you may be wondering…

What is entomology?

Entomology is the study of insects. Although insects are tiny, they are mighty–they cause much disease in our world, including the disease which I fight: Lyme! I hope to perform research on infectious diseases caused  by insects to ultimately provide health and healing to people hurt by insects. Also, I want to double major to combine nutrition education with disease treatment and prevention.

Davis is the perfect town for a foodie and health nut like myself. Overflowing with yoga, gluten-free and vegan bakeries, bikes, and farmers markets, Davis is my wonderful new home. I am so in love!

While in college, I will still be blogging, of course, but the relocation gives me a chance to broaden my foodie finds to San Francisco, Napa Valley, and Nor Cal in general as well as my hometown of Los Angeles.

IMG_0200

 

Coffee Sugar Scrub

Drinking coffee is always the highlight of each morning for me, but why not add more coffee into the daily routine? With this coffee sugar scrub, here is another way to enjoy coffee besides simply drinking it!

IMG_0612.JPG

Coffee Sugar Scrub Ingredients

Mix together all the ingredients, pour into a cute Mason jar, then use this scrub to exfoliate in the shower!

This recipe fills one regular-sized Mason jar or a few smaller ones. Enjoy!

Books on Books on Books

As a book nerd and an avid reader, what do I have? Shelf esteem–haha.

I am sharing my favorite books featuring nutrition research and healthy recipes!

FullSizeRender (45).jpg

Green Kitchen Smoothies by David Frenkiel & Luise Vindahl

This beautifully photographed recipe book showcases healthy recipes for all your smoothie, juice, nut butter, and nut milk needs–yum!

The Blender Girl by Tess Masters

Featuring gluten-free and vegan recipes for breakfast, snack, lunch, dinner, and dessert, this book combines whole and healthy ingredients to create simple and flavorful dishes packed with nutrients!

Sweet Paleo by Lea Hendry Valle

Sweet Paleo is filled with healthy dessert recipes and mouthwateringly gorgeous photos by an incredible woman. We met as fellow speakers at an event a few years ago, and since then I have been using and loving her cookbook!

Think & Eat Yourself Smart by Dr. Caroline Leaf

This book is one of the most fascinating nutrition books I have read yet, and I have read many! Dr. Leaf combines nutrition science and neuroscience research to teach readers how to maximize thinking abilities through the foods they do and do not eat.

The Better Brain Book by Dr. David Perlmutter

Although this book does not specifically focus on nutrition, Dr. Perlmutter includes healthy eating as a way to improve brain health.

Brain Maker by Dr. David Perlmutter

This book focuses on the gut microbiome and how our nutrition helps or harms its health. Encouraging a vegetable-based diet, Dr. Perlmutter includes recipes for nurturing a healthy gut and thus a healthy body!

Grain Brain by Dr. David Perlmutter

Dr. Perlmutter discusses how gluten and carbohydrates in general impact the brain. This book distinguishes between the quality of certain carbohydrates, and it offers recipes to further nurture brain health, the body’s cognitive hub!

Eat Pretty by Jolene Hart

Hart combines my favorite things–the color pink with seasonal foods and recipes to help everyone obtain beauty from the inside out!

It Starts with Food by Melissa and Dallas Hartwig

This read features the Whole30 diet, an interesting try to help kickstart your path to healthy eating.

Salt, Sugar, Fat by Michael Moss

Moss exposes the fast food industry, discussing salt, sugar, and fat-laden foods produced by corporations while examining the relationship between the contemporary producer and consumer.

Happy reading!

Chocolate-Covered Strawberry Shake

Happy *almost* Valentine’s Day!

I love all the chocolate-covered goodies this time of year, but this February I pledged to eat refined sugar-free, so I am developing creative ways to make typical Valentine treats healthier!

Today I am sharing my chocolate-covered strawberry shake recipe! ❤

fullsizerender-45

Here’s what you’ll need for 1 serving:

  • 1 1/2 cups unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/4 frozen, organic strawberries
  • 1/4 frozen, organic raspberries
  • 1/4 cup cacao powder
  • 1/2 serving Protein Powder (about 2 tablespoons)
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon almond butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon maca powder
  • Raw cacao nibs and fresh raspberries for topping

Combine all the ingredients in a blender, whirl them around, and pour your shake into a tall glass. Add a cute paper straw and top with cacao nibs and fresh raspberries.

I especially recommend organic strawberries since inorganic strawberries are essentially “pesticide sponges” and are listed in the “Dirty Dozen,” or the worst foods to eat if they are not organic.

This recipe makes one serving, so double the ingredients and share with a loved one! Spread the love during this season of love–one strawberry shake at a time. ❤

5 Apps Every Blogger Needs

As a blogger and Instagrammer, I spend a hefty amount of time using technology–particularly on my phone–each day. I am constantly developing and updating lists of restaurants to visit, ingredients to purchase, and recipes to create. When I am not planning my blog, I am writing, emailing, and working on projects or speaking engagements.

Today I will share my top five favorite and most helpful applications that make life so much easier for blogging! Keep in mind none of this post is sponsored–I am just really, really excited 🙂

1. Unum

This application is an all-in-one, one-stop-shop kinda thing! It includes a planning feature to visualize your Instagram feed layout and wholistically view your aesthetic prior to posting. You can edit your photos on the app, create your own filters, and post directly from Unum! Plus, it is a free application (yay!). Go download it now!

2. WordPress

I write my blog through WordPress, so having the application on my phone allows me to access my blog at any time, respond to comments, and interact with all my favorite followers! (Hint: you are all my favorite!). This is also helpful for following other blogs.

3. Pinterest

Pinterest: the place to be inspired and to inspire. I love connecting with other foodies like myself, finding recipe inspiration from others with similar diets, and posting my own recipes on Pinterest too!

4. Camera

This is my favorite phone application since I always snap photos of my meals and my everyday adventures! I love sharing photos of recipes and food on Instagram stories or posting them to my feed! All of this couldn’t be done without my trusty camera. I snap most of my photos from my phone since I always carry it with me, but I also own a higher quality camera that I use for planned photoshoots.

5. Boomerang

Boomerang is one of the most innovative apps in my opinion! It snaps pictures in rapid succession for a brief time interval, ultimately creating a fluid video of whatever movement you do during that time. Check an example out below!

Other than these, I wouldn’t be as productive without email, notes, Google, social media (Twitter, Pinterest, Facebook, and Instagram), and photo albums on my phone of course! Even if you’re not a blogger, I certainly recommend all these applications since they help me live more efficiently.

My Melrose Musts

Happy Monday! I visited Melrose Avenue in Los Angeles, California, for a fun girls’ day seeking out the best coffee and tea and healthy eats!

I listed my itinerary here as well as my recommendations for each place you must stop next time you go to Melrose Avenue–it is worth the trip!

Alfred Tea

This isn’t the first time I blogged about this adorable pink tearoom! It is way too cute not to mention again! I ordered the hot chocolate tea with almond milk. Instead of tasting like tea, it tasted like a rich, decadent, yet healthy dessert! PLEASE go try this!

fullsizerender-copy

Alfred Coffee

Home of delicious coffee and cool vibes, Alfred Coffee is the perfect place to grab a drink and work on a project or meet with a friend (like I did!).

Urth Caffe

Deliciously healthy, I ordered a gluten-free chicken pesto sandwich! Urth is full of healthy options for vegans, gluten-free people, or even those with no dietary restrictions! Everyone can find something here.

Live Beaming

And for dessert…Live Beaming! I ordered an organic, gluten-free, and vegan chocolate chip cookie. It is truly rare that I can enjoy a dessert when I’m out of my house, so I was thrilled! Plus it was absolutely delicious and tasted like the real thing.

Carrera Cafe

Perhaps I saved the most unique destination for last! Carrera Cafe has a coffee printer–yes, you heard that correctly! You can select a pre-designed option or create your own design to be printed on any type of latte you choose! I created my own designs then sent them to Carrera’s coffee printer via their app! This was a highlight of my week. Plus Melrose’s infamous pink wall lives directly across the street, so you can grab a drink then head to the pink wall for some photos! See the middle picture below for the latte design of my Health and High Heels logo! 

And for final words of wisdom…

img_8159

 

 

 

Espresso Hot Chocolate

Espresso Hot Chocolate…I know what you are thinking. Isn’t that simply mocha? Well, sort of. You see, mocha is typically a shot of espresso with milk and chocolate sauce. This recipe is a much healthier version, boasting dairy-free, gluten-free, vegan, and low-sugar credentials (although you could never tell since it certainly tastes delicious!).

I have been hooked on coffee (more recently venturing out to try espresso) ever since I sought out sipping caffeine as a natural headache treatment. I love the fragrant, unmistakeable aroma and the pleasant, earthy flavor.

fullsizerender-45

My recipe combines two of my favorite flavors: coffee and chocolate.

What you will need:

  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 2 packets stevia
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon espresso powder (Omit for plain hot chocolate)
  • Marshmallows (optional; adding this will increase the sugar content)

I love Dandies natural marshmallows or SmashMallow espresso bean-flavored ones as toppings!

Pour all ingredients into a blender, and blend until combined. Then pour this mixture into a mug and either heat on the stove (over medium heat) until warm or microwave for 1 and 1/2 minutes. Snuggle up by the fire and sip for the most relaxing winter treat!

Fun Foodie Fact: One cup of almond milk contains half our daily Vitamin E needs. Vitamin E moisturizes the skin, which is immensely helpful during these cold and dry winter months! {Source: Jolene Hart, CHC, AADP, Author of Eat Pretty}

 

National Cookie Day Recipe Roundup

Happy National Cookie Day! Let’s celebrate with a collection of cookie recipes ready to be made from my blog. This post features two links to cookie blog posts with four NEW cookie recipes! Today is the perfect excuse to enjoy a cookie or two…or four!

Cookie Dough Dip

For the no-bake, ready-to-eat dessert lover

fullsizerender-44

Microwave Cookie

For when you are in a rush but still desire a cookie fix

FullSizeRender (45) copy 2.jpg

Cashew Chickpea C🍪🍪kies

FullSizeRender (56).jpg

1 can chickpeas (15 oz)
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 egg whites
1/4 cup almond milk
1/4 cup light agave syrup
1 tbsp coconut sugar
2 tbsp cashew butter
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup gluten-free oats
1/2 cup dark chocolate chips

Directions:
~pulse chickpeas, vanilla extract, & almond milk in a food processor until smoothly combined
~pour this batter in a separate bowl then add the agave, cashew butter, salt, baking powder, coconut sugar, cinnamon, & egg whites; mix thoroughly

~grind the oats in the food processor until flour-like in consistency
~add the oats to the batter then fold in the chocolate chips
~bake ar 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 12-15 minutes

Oatmeal Banana Chocolate Cookies🍪❤️😍

fullsizerender-45-copy

What You’ll Need:🍴

1/2 cup gluten-free oats

2 Tsp Vanilla Extract

1 Tsp Cinnamon

1 Banana, mashed🍌

1/4 cup mini dairy-free chocolate chips🍫

1⃣ Mash the banana🍌

2⃣ Stir in vanilla extract & cinnamon, add oats and chocolate chips🍫

3⃣ Form into balls and bake at 375 degree Fahrenheit for 15 minutes then enjoy! 🌟makes 6 cookies🌟

Healthy Chocolate Chip Cookies!✌️💕🍪

fullsizerender-57

1⃣ mashed banana🍌
1⃣cup gluten-free oats
1⃣Tbsp coconut sugar
1⃣&1/2Tbsp coconut shreds
1⃣Tbsp dairy-free dark chocolate chips (Enjoy Life brand)
1⃣&1/2 Tbsp cacao powder
💫✨Combine all ingredients. Bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 12-15 minutes💫✨
Fun Foodie Fact: Dark chocolate increases blood flow to your heart❤️ & brain, improving thinking (Huffington Post).

Persimmon Cookies😊 Nana’s Recipe: Healthified

FullSizeRender (45).jpg


Every year my nana makes me delicious persimmon cookies during the holiday season, but now that I’meating  gluten and dairy-free, I can no longer partake in these tasty treats. So I took the recipe and made some healthy substitutes while still keeping the same yummy taste!👌❤️🍪
Ingredients:
1/2-2/3 cup agave nectar
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 egg (or egg replacement like flax seed if vegan)
Pulp of 2 persimmons (about 1 cup)
1 tsp baking soda
2 cups gluten-free flour
1-2 tsp cloves
1-2 tsp cinnamon
1-2 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp pumpkin spice
1 tsp salt
1 cup raisins
1 cup chopped walnuts

Directions:
🔸Mix together agave, applesauce, and egg then add in persimmon pulp. Combine all dry ingredients with this mixture. Fold in raisins and chopped walnuts. Transfer onto baking sheet (I put 1 tsp of dough onto the sheet for each cookie). Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 12 minutes.🍴❤️

Why We Should All Go to Van Leeuwen Ice Cream Right Now

About a week ago, I casually strolled along Abott Kinney Boulevard in Venice, California, on a warm, sunny Sunday afternoon. Nothing could have improved my day until….I discovered a Van Leeuwen Ice Cream Truck! Van Leeuwen sells infamously delicious vegan ice cream that I had been desperate to try. I happily ordered one dairy-free peanut butter and one chocolate scoop, and it did not disappoint!

Hands down, it was the most scrumptious vegan ice cream I have ordered to date. Seriously, please, everyone, go try this…..Van Leeuwen sells ice cream in pints in grocery stores and from LA and NYC locations. Consider this my public service announcement for all the dairy-free and vegan ice cream lovers of the world!

Not only was the ice cream great for me, but my family (who all enjoy regular ice cream), loved it too! We each devoured our scoops.

The vegan ice creams are made from house-made cashew milk, organic coconut milk, organic extra virgin coconut oil, organic cane sugar, pure cocoa butter, and organic carob bean.

fullsizerender-5-2

I love the emphasis on organic and whole ingredients, and I think this is the best type of treat!

Fun Foodie Fact: According to Britannica.com, Cashew nuts (used in Van Leeuwen’s vegan ice cream) actually grow attached to a fruit. Cashews also contain approximately one-fifth of the daily recommended value for magnesium. Magnesium provides the body with energy and promotes healthy bone structure.

My 1st Online Talk!

IMG_6984.JPG

I’m smiling in this picture since this morning, I started my day my favorite way: voicing my testimony and sharing how my chronic illness ultimately became a blessing. Speaking is a HUGE passion of mine, and I had the chance to present my first online talk today to an online school. After I spoke, I engaged in a Q&A session. I loved connecting with students from all over the world!

In the picture above, you will notice my high-heeled boots under the table. You can always catch me donning these special pink high heels for a speech or anything involving Health and High Heels! 🙂

A Not-So-Tricky Halloween Treat

Happy (almost) Halloween! T-1 day until this much-awaited holiday!

I don’t know about you, but as a kid I loved gorging myself every year on all the sugary Halloween candies I collected from trick-or-treating. Although I still treat myself to the occasional few pieces of candy corn (It’s all about moderation, and candy corn technically is a vegetable…right? I’m just kidding!), I also appreciate healthier alternatives to curb my sweet cravings without all the processed chemicals and sugar.

*Cue my Pumpkin Spice Chocolate Coffee Beans*

fullsizerender

Important note: I promise they taste way better than they photograph! Now you too can make these easy, sweet treats for yourself. Not only will these satisfy your chocolate cravings, but also they will give you an added caffeine boost! Who doesn’t love that?

Here’s what you’ll need….

Ingredients: 

  • 1 and 1/2 cups dark chocolate (use chips or break a bar into pieces for quicker melting)
  • 1 cup whole, roasted coffee beans (I snagged mine from Starbucks)
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  1. Melt the dark chocolate in a double boiler over low-medium heat (if you use too high of a heat setting, the chocolate will burn before melting).
  2. Remove the dark chocolate from above the heat.
  3. Stir in the cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice.
  4. Stir in the coffee beans, and thoroughly mix all the ingredients together.
  5. Place the chocolate-covered beans onto a baking sheet covered with parchment paper.
  6. Spread out the beans individually, or like me, group them in clusters for “chocolate coffee bark.”
  7. Let the beans dry entirely, and when finished, enjoy!

Fun Foodie Fact: Consuming dark chocolate  (70% or more cacao) lowers blood pressure and increases endorphins in the brain. A recent study also concluded that eating just 1 ounce of dark chocolate a day could reduce stress damage to the metabolism as well as decrease cortisol levels, according to Jolene Hart, CHC, AADP, author of Eat Pretty

Chocolate not only tastes good, but it also boosts your health! 3 cheers for chocolate!

Sweet Cinnamon Squash

When I think of “fall food,” warm meals and pumpkin spice lattes instantly pop up in my mind. Since I posted my healthy pumpkin spice latte recipe the other day, today I want to share with you a great way to prepare one of my alltime favorite fall foods: Butternut squash! I love butternut squash in soup or simply roasted. Roasting your own butternut squash is easy, delicious, and healthy!  And adding cinnamon makes for the best fall treat.

img_3911

Here’s how to make your own sweet cinnamon squash:

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.

Cut the squash open and remove the inside “threads” of the squash. Place onto a baking sheet.

Lightly brush it with olive oil, then sprinkle sea salt, cinnamon, and coconut sugar atop the butternut squash halves.

Bake for 45-55 minutes. You can dig in right away, or save some for a later day (if it lasts that long without you first devouring it!). I love eating mine fresh out of the oven, which is perfect for a cold and cozy autumn afternoon.

Enjoy! 🙂

Fun Foodie Fact: According to the USDA National Nutrient Database, one cup of butternut squash provides over 4 times the amount of necessary daily Vitamin A! Vitamin A does wonders for the body such as boost immunity, promote cell repair and renewal, and produce glowing skin and healthy eyes!

 

 

DIY: Pumpkin Spice Latte

Pumpkin spice lattes: the fall fixation and the autumn obsession (e.g. this drink even has its own Wikipedia page).

IMG_6583.JPG

This week marks the beginning of a new month and a transition into fall. I love the feeling of wearing a cozy sweater, leggings, boots, and scarf while cupping a warm drink in my hand! For many people, this go-to drink is a PSL (pumpkin spice latte), typically from Starbucks. Don’t get me wrong–I love Starbucks! And although I love the taste of pumpkin and fall spices, I don’t love the high amounts of sugar and chemicals contained in each one of these drinks, so I decided to whip up my own at home instead!

My homemade pumpkin spice latte took less than 5 minutes and is full of fresh, natural, and healthy ingredients!

For your homemade pumpkin spice latte, you will need….

  • Freshly brewed coffee (I made a large cup of coffee in my Keurig at home using Trader Joe’s pre-ground pumpkin spice coffee made with only spices and coffee!)
  • Sweetener of your choice (optional; I used one packet of organic stevia)
  • Almond milk (my favorite is vanilla-flavored from Califia Farms)
  • Pumpkin pie spice

Brew your coffee. Now add all of the following in a blender: a splash of almond milk (probably 2 tablespoons–or more depending on which kind you use), the cup of freshly brewed coffee, sweetener, pumpkin pie spice (I recommend starting with 1/4 teaspoon and increasing in that increment to add more spice flavor if needed), and organic pumpkin puree (1 tablespoon). Blend everything together until it forms a frothy liquid. Pour it all into your favorite mug. Mine is my “K” initial mug from Anthropologie! Top off with some more pumpkin spice, snuggle up with a good book, and happily sip your healthified PSL! 🙂

img_6585

 

 

 

 

 

How to Order Healthy at Starbucks

I love coffee.  It gets me up in the morning, energizes me for the day, and brings a smile to my face.  However, I don’t always have time to make my favorite organic coffee at home with almond milk and stevia. Somedays I am in a rush, away from home, and need a quick coffee or caffeine fix.  Stopping at Starbucks is easy, but it’s not always the healthiest option.  However, you can still be healthy at Starbucks if you follow my simple tips!

#1) Avoid added chemicals and sugars like syrups & flavorings. 

Your body will not recognize these ingredients as delicious as they may taste.  Avoiding these will also help you avoid a sugar high (followed by the inevitable crash).  Always check if your drink comes pre-sweetened.  Sneaky drinks like iced tea may be filled with sugar if you don’t specifically request to remove the flavored syrup.

#2) Flavor your drink with the available cinnamon powder or B.Y.O.S.

Sprinkling cinnamon in your drink adds a spicy and yummy flavor without the artificial chemicals and sugar in syrups! And if you B.Y.O.S. (Bring Your Own Stevia) like me, you don’t need to consume sugar. I always carry organic stevia packets in my wallet, so that I can sweeten drinks like coffee or iced tea when I am out.

#3) Order a small size if you do decide to indulge.

Enjoy your treats in moderation!

#4) For snacks, choose nuts or a piece of whole fruit instead of pre-packaged snacks.

My typical Starbucks order is coffee with coconut milk.  I enjoy lattes, but I also love cold brew because it is less bitter than normal coffee, meaning it usually does not need much sweetening!  No matter which coffee I order, once I add cinnamon and stevia, I am good-to-go.

IMG_4711

Healthy Eating, Happy Living, & Beverly Hills

Last week, I turned 17! To celebrate, I stayed at the Beverly Hills Hotel (also known as The Pink Palace because of its adorable color)! The entire trip was a (very pink!) dream.  Can you guess my favorite color? 😉 While there, we both enjoyed the hotel’s yummy restaurants and tested some other great places around the city, all of which I am thrilled to share with you in this blog post.

IMG_4854

IMG_4863.JPG

Breakfast: The Polo Lounge at The Beverly Hills Hotel 

What do I love more than almond milk lattes and beautiful flowers?  I don’t think anything is better! For breakfast I dined on scrambled egg whites, gluten-free toast, and avocado!

Lunch: The Cabana Cafe at The Beverly Hills Hotel

During my weekend in Beverly Hills, when I wasn’t eating, I was at the spa, by the pool, or shopping (although this blog post may cause you to think all I did was eat…haha!). The Cabana Cafe, located overlooking the pool, was the perfect lunchtime spot after a busy day of activities! 

Although July is hot and sunny, I could never pass up an opportunity to indulge in some of The Beverly Hills Hotel’s famous tortilla soup decadently topped with avocado and chicken.  For my entree, I enjoyed the Asian Chicken salad complete with lots of flavor and lots of different veggies! I left a happy girl with a full tummy! 🙂

Snack Time: Cupcakes! 

IMG_4876.PNG

A special surprise and an afternoon treat was delivered to my room–gluten and dairy-free cupcakes! Not only were they delicious, but I was also ecstatic because I usually cannot eat cake on my birthday due to my allergies!

Afternoon Pick-Me-Up: Alfred (Tea and Coffee)

Since I had the entire weekend to enjoy Beverly Hills and its surroundings, I decided to try both Alfred Coffee and Alfred Tea over the course of the trip!

Alfred Tea

Alfred Tea is probably the prettiest place ever because of its adorable pink decor! I ordered a matcha boba drink with almond milk.  It was my first time trying both boba and matcha, so I guess you could say I was a little late to the party–oops 😉

 

Alfred Coffee

As much as I love tea, there is nothing like the refreshing taste of freshly brewed coffee.  I tried the cold brew nitro at Alfred Coffee, which was outrageously delicious! I added almond milk and a sprinkle of stevia to top it off.

 

Dinner: Spago by Wolfgang Puck

I don’t have any pictures of my food from this dinner because it was too yummy to wait, so I ate it before taking a picture (oops)! I enjoyed a salad with a fresh lemon vinaigrette and date puree to start then Halibut with vegetables for my main course.

Overall, I was delighted with all of the spots mentioned in this blog post and absolutely recommend each of them because of the wonderful experiences I had on my birthday trip! If you’re ever in Beverly Hills and looking for fun, new places to try, I hope I can help!:)

 

 

 

 

15-Minute, Mouth-Watering Stir Fry

Are you ever in a rush to make dinner, but you don’t know what to cook? And of course you want something delicious and healthy, but what would be quick, yummy, and nutritious? I have the perfect answer: my veggie stir-fry recipe!

FullSizeRender (66) copy

This week I am guest posting on The Illest Optimist to share my mouth-watering stir-fry recipe that you can customize to your own dietary needs and whip up in a hurry.

Like me, Ashley from The Illest Optimist battles Lyme disease.  She strives to raise awareness for chronic illnesses and healthy living as well as inspire those with illnesses to remain positive and keep fighting! I absolutely love what she stands for and the work she does in the health activism field.

Check out my post here! 🙂

 

 

Summer Beach Reads: Think & Eat Yourself Smart by Dr. Caroline Leaf

I hope everyone’s summer has been filled with lots of sunshine, laughter, smiles, adventures, healthy food, and captivating reads! I’ve been lucky enough to enjoy a good dose of all of these wonderful things, and today I want to share another captivating beach read as a part of my Summer Reading series!

IMG_4302

Think and Eat Yourself Smart by Dr. Caroline Leaf

Dr. Caroline Leaf combines two of my favorite things: neuroscience and nutrition.  This book details the connection between the food we eat and how our brains think, and let me tell you: It is FASCINATING! Dr. Leaf discusses the flaws of the modern American diet while providing suggestions to improve our diets and thus improve our thinking.  Her recipes in the book are delicious, and my goal is to test all of them in the kitchen by the end of summer!

I thoroughly enjoyed reading Think and Eat Yourself Smart during my visit to the beach this weekend, and I know you will absolutely enjoy it too! 🙂

 

 

 

Try This Tuesday: Karma Baker, LA

Karma Baker is the definition of my happiness because I honestly cannot think of anything better than a dedicated gluten-free and vegan bakery! Whether you want cupcakes, donuts, cake pops, cakes, cookies, or brownies, Karma has you covered! Karma Baker is my not-so-new obsession!

Here are some pictures of my favorite Karma Baker treats! 🙂

IMG_4369

The most delicious mini cupcakes ever! Clockwise from the top left: Cookies & Cream, Red Velvet, Chocolate, Vanilla, & Strawberry.  Yum!

IMG_8736.JPG

Last year’s custom birthday cake! Pink lemonade-flavored frosting and cake with frosting roses surrounding the sides. Healthy cake heaven! ❤

IMG_3890.JPG.jpeg

Pretty-in-pink.  This is the most adorable donut I have ever had!

You may have noticed I have a slight (or maybe not-so-slight) obsession with the color pink.  These “Karma Cakes” combined three of my favorite things: The color pink, chocolate, & Karma Baker!

Karma Baker not only sells from a storefront, but they also offer their baked goods at many locations throughout LA! For a comprehensive list, click here! Or order online, and they will ship to you! Either way, you will LOVE everything Karma Baker has to offer!

Your New Go-To Summer Salad

Summer days require refreshing salads like this one. 😍  Beat the heat with these simple ingredients: Lettuce, sweet peppers, avocado, tiny tomatoes, & cucumber! Easy to make and yummy to eat!  Naturally gluten, dairy, soy-free and vegan (never flavor-free!). 

Did you know? Cucumbers are 96% water, so hydrate your body on hot summer days by throwing chopped cucumbers in your salad (0r even in your spa-themed water)!☀️

(Click here to read more health benefits)

Have a wonderful Fourth of July weekend, everyone! 🙂

FullSizeRender-1.jpg

FullSizeRender.jpg

Summer Beach Read Series

Summer sunshine calls for lots of beach days if you live in Southern California like me! I love reading on the sand at the beach or even on a lounge chair by the pool, relaxing and soaking up both sunshine and knowledge.  So today I am starting my Summer Beach Read Series to commend my favorite authors for their books about healthy eating and healthy living!  Because learning doesn’t have to end when summer starts.

The first book of my Summer Beach Read Series is……..

*Drum roll please*

Eat Pretty: Nutrition for Beauty Inside and Out by Jolene Hart, CHC, AADP

FullSizeRender.jpg

This book has become my recent favorite because it discusses the health benefits of fresh produce season-by-season and lists easy and delicious recipes that implement fresh, seasonal foods!  I adore how author Jolene Hart discusses the major impacts food has on your body–both good and bad–because this shows how you really “are what you eat”!

The first time I picked up Eat Pretty, I didn’t move for three hours because I was too riveted by Hart’s writing and research.  I love how Hart connects internal and external beauty with the foods we put in our bodies.  Plus, the book is pink (my favorite color!), so honestly there is nothing better. Bonus points for her that it was presented so aesthetically!

So, the next step is simple: Next time you’re going to lounge in the summer sun and need a page-turning book, pick up Eat Pretty!

Sliced or Whole Fruit?

Not only are we saying “hello” to summer this month, but we are also welcoming hot, sunny days filled with time for friends, laughter, fresh fruit, and adventures.  I love filling my free time during school’s summer recess with lots of baking, reading about nutrition, and blogging!

During my reading this week, I came across a study done by the Food & Brand Lab at Cornell University which concluded that people, especially kids, reach for sliced or bite-sized fruit more than whole fruit.  

I certainly know this concept to be true for me, so I often pre-cut fruit to place in my fridge and munch on easily throughout the week.  I stock up on grapes and berries and kumquats then cut up watermelon and cantaloupe and store it at eye-level in my fridge, so fresh fruit is the first thing I see when I swing open the refrigerator to search for snacking options.

I have included in this post photos of my favorite ways to enjoy fruit, the most refreshing and healthy snack for hot summer days! Scroll down to see 🙂

Farmers’ markets are the perfect place to purchase the freshest organic berries!

IMG_1498.JPG

How awesome is this organic yellow watermelon I found at my local farmers’ market last summer?!

IMG_5934.JPG

Kumquats are easy to pop in your mouth for a sweet and sour snack!

IMG_1322 2.PNG

Making a pretty picture with your fruit makes it more enjoyable to devour! The “sand” is coconut sugar.

IMG_1202 3.PNG

Tangerines + kiwis + blackberries=yum!

FullSizeRender.jpg

Sliced veggies are also better than whole veggies.  Chop up veggies for simple snacking along with your sliced fruit! Dip veggies in hummus (a homemade recipe coming soon!) for a midday snack!

Why Coffee Really Is The Best

I’ve developed the habit of sipping coffee every morning with my breakfast because 1) Who doesn’t love that amazing flavor?! and 2) I love the energy and headache relief that comes from coffee’s natural caffeine.  But Cornell University’s nutritional science researchers have recently added to my list of reasons to drink coffee.  On top of tasting good and helping me feel good, coffee is good for you and your eyes! According to Cornell University’s article “A cup of coffee a day may keep retinal damage away” and based on their study featured in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, raw coffee contains 1 percent caffeine but  7-9 percent chlorogenic acid, which has been found to prevent retinal damage.  So for a yummy taste, an energy boost, and healthy eyes, start sipping java in the A.M.! Thank you, Cornell researchers, for bolstering coffee’s benefit list! And thank you, coffee, for helping me get up in the mornings.

With all this talk about coffee, here is how I love to drink it in the morning:  I always start off with a cup of piping hot joe (Java Babe brand all the way), a splash of almond milk (currently loving Califia Farms) , and a sprinkle of stevia (more on why I love stevia another day!).

Here, pictured below, are some of the most beautiful lattes I’ve ever enjoyed!

IMG_3661-1.JPG

With coffee this pretty, how can I resist? {Almond milk latte with a ❤ from Hugo’s, LA}

FullSizeRender-1.jpg

I am seriously impressed by the latte artist at Malibu Farm that created such an adorable monkey simply out of almond milk!

Raising Awareness for Lyme Disease

IMG_3512

Last week I was thrilled to speak at my high school’s chapel and share with the student body how my Lyme disease became a blessing (watch it here).  How fitting that May is Lyme Disease Awareness Month!  I am passionate about sharing my testimony to hopefully inspire others and use knowledge gained from my own health struggles to educate people on health eating and living.   Without my Lyme diagnosis and health issues, I never would have been inspired to start Health and High Heels.  It’s integral to find the silver lining in even the most painful and challenging situations in life because often the hardest situations are also the most fruitful.

 

 

Smoothie Bowl Saturday

Happy Smoothie Bowl Saturday! Last week I posted my “Top 5 Los Angeles Smoothie Bowls,” but today I want to share with you my recipe for making your own at home!

Top 5 Los Angeles Smoothie Bowls

As many of you know, I love smoothie bowls.  And when I say “I love smoothie bowls,” I mean: “I wish I could eat them for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.”  However, I don’t always have time to make my own at home. 😦 So I rely on these 5 places to fulfill my cravings and hit the spot with their over-the-top delicious smoothie bowls!  These smoothie bowls are not rated in any order–I simply can’t choose a favorite!

  1. Bowl of Heaven

The name doesn’t lie–Bowl of Heaven’s smoothie bowls are literally bowls of heaven. There are so many smoothie bowl choices that picking which amazing one you will order is the hardest part.  My personal faves: the lime-a-licious (raspberries and dark chocolate-flavored with a zingy twist!) or the peanut butter bowl with berries (think chocolate and berries and peanut butter heaven). I add paleo granola, and bam! SO. YUMMY.

FullSizeRender

FullSizeRender (60) copy 2.jpg

2. Malibu Farm

This isn’t one you will want to take to-go.  Enjoy the beautiful view as you sit on the Malibu Pier and dine on this wonderful, organic smoothie bowl! Add some sunshine and a perfect day awaits you!

IMG_2189 copy.JPG

3. Nekter Juice Bar

Nekter’s bowls are yummy and the best breakfast on a warm summer day! I love, love, love their peanut butter bowl. Whenever I go, I have a photoshoot (haha) of my bowl.

My car may be “mini,” but thank goodness Nekter’s smoothie bowls aren’t!

FullSizeRender (60) copy.jpg

FullSizeRender (59) copy.jpg

4. Sunlife Organics

You can’t go wrong at Sunlife.  The first smoothie bowl I ever tried was from here, and I seriously love all the choices! Pictured here is their “samurai bowl” which is laden with superfoods and tastes delicious.

FullSizeRender (60).jpg

FullSizeRender (59).jpg

5. Uba Tuba Acai

Uba Tuba’s bowls are pure acai with a plethora of toppings to choose from! Seriously this is the best place to meet a friend (like I did in the picture below!) because of it’s cool vibe and artsy acai bowls.

FullSizeRender (61).jpg

 

If you live in Los Angeles or are visiting, these 5 places you won’t want to miss–I promise! 🙂

Xoxo,

Kendal

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Healthy Travel Tips~inspired by my Cancún trip

Last week, I spent my spring break in Cancún, Mexico! I was completely captivated by the stunning turquoise waters, the sunshine, and white sand beaches . On top of that, there was lots of healthy, fresh, and local food options! I really could stay there forever.

In this blog post, not only will I share my healthy food findings from Cancún, but also I have tips that will help you stay fit and healthy on any vacation!

Tip #1: Take advantage of locally grown food, and try the foods the region you’re visiting is known for.

I took a cooking class at the hotel where I stayed that was centered on local foods and flavors.  We used veggies and fruits that are currently in season to create this scrumptious shrimp ceviche (shrimp are a main food source in the coastal town I visited).  We also made blue corn tortillas by hand since blue corn is a prominent crop there! Everything was incredibly fresh and delicious.  There were no added preservatives; it was all natural and from the earth. I couldn’t have been happier!

IMG_2886

These shrimp were freshly caught and, might I add, delicious.  Order foods on the menu that are prevalent in the region you’re visiting.  If you’re by the ocean, order seafood. Order produce that are in season. Don’t be afraid to try something new (like me with these whole shrimp!). I promise your body and your tastebuds will thank you!

 

I absolutely adored the guacamole we made in the cooking class because it started with ultra-fresh ingredients. Guacamole pro tip: Use a mortar and pestle to mash your ingredients. Start by mashing fresh onions and cilantro, then the avocado, and pour in freshly squeezed lime juice, chopped tomatoes, and serrano peppers for added flavor!

Tip #2: Balance your vacation meals by ordering a salad for your starter or fresh veggies as your side dish. You can still splurge and eat some unhealthy treats, but make sure not to completely ditch your fruits and veggies.

IMG_2902.JPG

Here  is one of my favorite salads ever! Grilled shrimp, grilled veggies, mixed greens, and fresh avocado. Eaten on the beach=100 times better!

Tip #3: Come prepared.

Pack some healthy snacks for travelling like protein bars, dried fruits, mixed nuts, and nut butter. This will help you avoid eating the unhealthy food options sold at places like the airport.  I’m a coffee drinker, so when I’m on vacation, I’m always prepared with stevia packets, so I can avoid having to add sugar to my morning cup of joe.

FullSizeRender 2

Some of my favorites: Lara Bars (see picture above), Kind Bars, Justin’s almond butter squeezable packs, and Trader Joe’s dried fruit without added sugar (peaches and apricots are the best!)

Tip #4: Stay fit by walking through town, riding bikes to explore a city, or swimming!

Depending on the vacation you choose, there will be different opportunities to stay fit and active. If you’re at a tropical location, enjoy swimming in the pool or ocean. If you’re in a busy city, walk to your destination or rent bikes as you explore. Take a yoga class if your hotel offers it, or try a new type of exercise. Whatever you do, balance resting with moving, and your body will be much happier!

Tip #5: Order water with lemon when you eat. 

Lemons squeezed in water actually alkalize the body and will help you detoxify your system if you decide to splurge and have a treat. You definitely should try the local foods and have a dessert or two because after all it is vacation; however, drinking water with lemon will help you stay healthier and even tastes yummier than plain water! It’s a win-win situation. 🙂

IMG_5894.JPG

Tip #6: Treat yo-self.

You are on vacation, so it’s okay not to stick too strictly to your normal healthy diet. You should try a fun dessert or order something a little bit unhealthy if you want! Just be sure to spread out these unhealthy splurges throughout the trip, keep exercising, and hydrate to counteract your treat.

Here is a picture of one of the scrumptious macarons I devoured and enjoyed by the ocean last week in Cancún.

IMG_2863

Tip #7: Have fun! Don’t spend your entire vacation obsessing or worrying about whether or not every bite you put into your mouth is local, fresh, organic, sugar-free, et cetera…

Realize that if you don’t eat enough greens  or if you eat too much sugar while on your trip,  you can go back to your normal healthy eating when you get home, but for your time away, don’t worry too much. Be sure to enjoy the culture, food, and relaxation that comes with travelling.  You need to give yourself grace if you don’t eat the perfect diet while on vacation; just do your best.

To wrap up this post, here are pictures of the gorgeous dinner setting for my last night in Cancún! I hope these tips helped you because they have certainly helped me.  ❤

If you have any questions or want to share some of your own tips for staying fit and healthy while travelling, be sure to leave them in the comments! 🙂

IMG_3031.JPG

IMG_3034.JPG

 

 

 

A Girl’s Guide to a Healthy Valentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day is less than a week away. You know what that means? Candy conversation hearts, boxes of chocolate, and all things sweet and sappy are flying off store shelves like crazy. I love celebrating love, but I prefer to celebrate with much more healthy, nourishing treats than the processed junk in stores. That’s why I’ve created this healthified guide to Valentine’s Day.

First things first…Breakfast!

FullSizeRender (59)

Start your day off healthy and happy with this yummy pink smoothie! This one contains 1 and 1/4 cup almond milk, 1/2 cup frozen organic strawberries, 1 scoop vanilla protein powder, and 1 tablespoon peanut butter.  Add cacao, cinnamon, or maca powder for an extra flavor and health boost! Just blend these ingredients, pour into a mason jar with a cute straw, and enjoy!

Craving something more hearty than a smoothie? Try this delicious overnight oatmeal!

FullSizeRender

I made a small strawberry smoothie with 1/2 cup almond milk (or any milk you like), 1 teaspoon chia seeds, a sprinkle of cacao powder, and a handful of strawberries. Once I blended this altogether, I poured the smoothie over 1/2 cup of gluten-free oats in a mason jar. Place the mason jar in the fridge overnight, and when you wake up the next morning, BAM! There’s your delicious breakfast ready to go!

Top your overnight oats with fresh, organic strawberries if you like.

IMG_6134

These pink and purple smoothie bowls are another fun way to start the special day! Plus you get to decorate and top each bowl to your own liking.  It’s like a mini masterpiece!

To make a smoothie bowl, I whip up a smoothie that has a larger ratio of frozen fruit than almond milk, which is typically 1 cup fruit for every 1/4-1/3 cup almond milk.  Make sure to toss in a scoop of protein powder or tablespoon of nut butter, so your smoothie is thick enough.

I topped these with berries, pomegranate seeds, hemp seeds, and toasted coconut flakes!

IMG_8855.JPG

IMG_6555

No breakfast is complete without coffee. For Valentine’s Day, why not make your daily java in this “LOVE” mug?

FullSizeRender (57) copy.jpg

I “LOVE” my morning coffee with almond milk and stevia!

And for lunch…Sport these heart-shaped sunnies while enjoying veggies and fresh watermelon juice! A splendid lunch at an even more splendid location–Malibu Farm, one of my favorites! 🙂

IMG_8359.JPG

Craving a sweet treat for dessert?

FullSizeRender.jpg

Indulge a little with this perfectly pink Laduree macaron–Strawberry Guimauve (marshmallow) flavored! No words can truly describe its exquisitely unique taste that has me wishing I could eat one every day. Too bad the store is in NYC, and I’m in LA…Or maybe that’s a good thing 😉

Of course we cannot forget about flowers, one of the best parts of Valentine’s Day! I love this incredible array from the Whole Foods in New York City.  Bring some home for the perfect centerpiece!

IMG_1193.JPG

FullSizeRender (59).jpg

Or bring that centerpiece to your local park and have a “pretty in pink” picnic!

FullSizeRender (60).jpg

And for a snack?

IMG_9438.JPG

These beautiful berries will hit your snacking spot, especially in a cute pink bowl!

IMG_6677.JPG

Or top fresh berries with a dollop of coconut whipped cream and a sprig of mint.

And there you have it…Your guide to a healthy(er) Valentine’s Day! ❤

 

Hyatt Regency DFW took a “Bite out of Lyme”!

I am incredibly excited to announce that the Hyatt Regency in Texas took a “Bite Out of Lyme” and did the Lyme Disease Challenge to support me and all the other Lyme fighters out there!

Also, in January of 2016, they will donate all of their fundraising money to the International Lyme and Associated Disease Society, a major researcher for Lyme Disease.  I am hoping this money will bring them closer to a cure.

Watch them “Take a Bite out of Lyme” below!

Apple Muffins and a Bonus Recipe for the Bay Club!

IMG_78151-730x744

This last week I was featured on the Bay Club Blog, where I shared my very own gluten, dairy, soy, & refined-sugar free (but certainly not flavor-free 😉 !)  apple recipes perfect for fall!

Click here to check out my Apple Cinnamon Muffin recipe as well as a bonus Apple Pie in a Cup smoothie recipe!

IMG_0698

Catering the Music for Mobility Event

IMG_0439 IMG_0467

This weekend I shared my healthy treats at the Music for Mobility event, which raised money for a cerebral palsy home to purchase an all-terrain wheelchair for its residents to see the beach for the first time!  I felt honored to participate, and I loved listening to the incredibly talented musicians performing at the event while standing by my table of organic and gluten, dairy, soy, refined sugar-free treats.  I served pumpkin spice candied pecans (pictured below; recipe here), hummus and veggies, and quinoa fudge (recipe coming soon!).  I also gave a speech on how Lyme disease has disabled me in many physical ways, but at the same time, it has also enabled me by cultivating greater compassion and a passion for healthy eating within me.

Overall, the day was a success because the event’s goal to fundraise $5,000 for the special wheelchair was surpassed, and over $7,000 was raised!! 🙂

IMG_0428

Homemade Granola

What’s better than homemade granola fresh out of the oven?  Nothing! Most store-bought granolas have chemicals or added sugars, so making your own at home is not only more fun, but also healthier!

FullSizeRender IMG_2390

Here’s what you’ll need…

  • 2 cups gluten-free oats
  • 3/4 raw mixed nuts, chopped (I used almonds, cashews, brazil nuts, and pecans)
  • 1 heaping teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup (or another liquid sweetener such as honey or non-GMO agave)

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit.  Combine the ingredients in a bowl and stir until evenly mixed together! Place on a lined cookie sheet and bake for about 20 minutes, take it out from the oven and mix around the granola on the cookie sheet, then bake for another 20 minutes.  Let cool.  Next, get out a bowl and enjoy your granola either alone with almond milk or make a parfait using almond yogurt, granola, berries, and almond butter!

Sometimes I also enjoy putting dried fruit (with no added sugar) in my granola, such as dried apricots! If you decide to add this, use about 1/2 cup chopped dried fruit after it finishes baking so the fruit does not burn in the oven.

Fun Foodie Fact: Cinnamon helps regulate blood sugar and improve antioxidant status in the body!

WHOA Magazine Article–I’m Published!

FullSizeRender (56)

I am incredibly excited about my first published article! I wrote “How My Lyme Became a Blessing” for the Fall 2015 issue of WHOA Women Magazine.  I truly believe that Lyme disease, although the hardest experience I have ever endured, has also been a true blessing in my life because of the character traits, career goals, and health awareness it has inspired within me.  You can grab your copy by clicking here (WHOAWomen.com) or visiting your local Barnes and Noble!

Below is a scan of my article, featured in WHOA Women Magazine’s Volume 6, Issue 4 (Fall 2015), and below that is the transcript of my article.

fullsizerender-3

Joy Despite Difficult Circumstances

Never will I forget the day I was diagnosed with Lyme disease in March of 2014. I was only 14 years old. For years I had struggled with a plethora of undiagnosed health issues and desperately prayed, asking God for answers.

Little did I know this single event would not only strengthen my relationship with the Lord, but also help me find His calling for my life.

Battling a chronic, debilitating disease is not easy. It has robbed me of things I previously took for granted, such as the ability to function like a normal teenager, to spend time with friends (I now spend a lot of time in bed), and to play golf on the high school team; however, this experience is something I would never want to change because of what God has developed within me—strength, perseverance, compassion. It is only with God’s strength, not my own, that I am able to get out of bed each day. Each morning I must ask Him to help me get through the day, and each day He carries me through. It is not easy, but I am thankful because God helps me when I am weak. I rely on the His Word to motivate me on the days when I am discouraged and feel the weight of my disease heavily crushing me and even days when I feel somewhat okay. One of my favorite Bible verses is from 2 Corinthians 12 where God tells Paul, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” This is quite possibly my favorite line in the Bible (although it is hard to choose just one!) because it resonates so deeply with me. Instead of worrying and pressuring myself to live up to unrealistic expectations I have set for myself, I have to remind myself that God’s grace is all I need and that although I am weak and imperfect, God’s power covers all of my issues and imperfections with an overwhelming umbrella of love and mercy.

You wouldn’t be able to guess that I am sick by simply glancing at me or that my treatment consists of taking 80 pills a day (no, that is not an exaggeration), multiple antibiotics, weekly IV therapy, and giving myself frequent Vitamin B12 injections as well as using an abundance of special powders, lotions, and drops. On the outside I may not look like I am fighting a disease, but I struggle with this invisible, chronic, nasty disease every single second.

Despite my extensive treatment and chronic sickness, I have found Lyme disease to be one of the biggest blessings in my life. The key is that I have asked God to grant me His joy despite my trials. And when God called me to launch my website, Healthandhighheels.org, even though there were many excuses that immediately entered my mind, I listened to His call and obediently followed through. It wasn’t easy, but by obeying His command, I have found great joy in educating others about nutrition and sharing my gluten, dairy, and soy-free recipes with the world.

 

Super Good Superfood Smoothie

This smoothie recipe is incredible! I’m not kidding…You have to try this!  That’s why call it my “Super Good Superfood Smoothie” 🙂 Not only does it have great taste, but also great health benefits!

IMG_5573

Here’s what you’ll need….

  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 banana, frozen
  • 1 tablespoon peanut butter
  • 2 teaspoons raw cacao powder
  • 1 teaspoon chia seeds
  • 1 teaspoon cacao nibs
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon maca powder
  • 1 teaspoon coconut sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • cinnamon (to taste)

Blend and enjoy!

Fun Foodie Facts:

Maca supports adrenal health because it contains four different alkaloids that help the endocrine system. This promotes a decrease in stress and an increase in energy.

Cacao is rich in antioxidants, which decrease the number of free radicals in the body (harmful chemicals).

Chia seeds are high in omega-3 fatty acids and fiber, so they help you feel fuller for longer.

Try This Tuesday: Pressed Juicery Freezes

IMG_7799  IMG_7797

Gluten, Dairy, Soy, Refined-Sugar Free Soft Serve?!  Somebody pinch me.  This must be a dream.  But wait…it’s not!  I am absolutely obsessed with Pressed Juicery’s freezes right now!  They’re soft serves made with all natural ingredients…100% fruits, nuts, and veggies!  I have visited two southern California locations (in Santa Barbara and Fashion Island), and let me tell you, this is not something you want to pass up!

My go-to flavors are chocolate or vanilla.  Simple, but delicious.  Each is made with almonds, dates, sea salt, and either cacao or vanilla (depending on whether you order chocolate or vanilla 🙂 )! Plus, there are so many toppings it is hard to choose!!  I love the almond and peanut butter drizzles, hardening cacao sauce, and any fresh berries!

Bottom line: Pressed Juicery’s freezes are simply incredible.  I wish I lived closer to a location that served them.  If you are ever nearby a freeze-serving location, you NEED to go and try one!  Or even if you’re not, they are definitely worth the trip.  And when you do go, be sure to order the biggest size possible (like me!).  I promise you won’t regret it.

IMG_7801  FullSizeRender copy

Refreshing & Rehydrating Grapefruit Mint Juice

During the summer, I love having something fruity and refreshing to sip on hot days!  This grapefruit mint juice perfectly fits the bill.  Using fresh organic mint grown in my very own backyard garden, I whipped this up in a matter of minutes!FullSizeRender (56) copy

What you’ll need…

  • 1 grapefruit, juiced
  • 12 mint leaves, broken apart
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon organic agave nectar (or sweetener of choice–maple syrup or honey would probably also work)
  • water and ice

Combine 1 part water, 1 part juice, and 1 part ice in a pitcher until you’ve used all the grapefruit juice.  Add in the broken mint leaves and sweetener.  You may need more or less sweetener than how much I added depending on how bitter or sweet your grapefruit is. Mine was pretty bitter, so it needed a little bit more. (about 1 teaspoon agave).  You can also try mixing in raspberries or any other fruit you think would make a nice addition to this drink.  Let the pitcher sit in the fridge until the drink is cold.

Pour in glasses, add cute straws, and enjoy with your friends and family!

Fun Foodie Fact:  Grapefruit is one of the best fruits for rehydrating because it is composed of 91% water and full of electrolytes!

 FullSizeRender (56)

Try This Tuesday: Erewhon

IMG_8843 (1)

An all-organic grocery store with lots of gluten-free and vegan options?  It sounds too good to be true, but guess what?! Erewhon, with two California locations, is this magical grocery store I can’t wait to tell you about!  Erewhon is not only my favorite grocery store, but also one of my favorite places to grab dinner with friends or family because of its truly ah-mazing hot (and cold) deli sections and salad bar!!! I am not used to having so many healthy options, but I love it!! ❤

I recently went with a few friends for dinner and ordered some of their sushi rolls, which I highly recommend by the way!  And to drink?  Alkaline water, of course! I absolutely had to get a side of their roasted kabocha squash as well because it is incredible! My friends ordered salads, veggie wraps, and smoothies for dinner!  Everyone agreed that not only does Erewhon’s food taste great, but it makes your body feel great after eating it too! For dessert we all split a few items because there were so many yummy-looking options it was difficult to choose just one!  We bought a raw chocolate brownie, a raw ooey gooey chocolate coconut brownie, a chocolate almond butter tart, and mango sorbet!  Everything was so decadent and delicious.

Overall,  I give Erewhon 5 stars and a big thumbs up!  Next time you’re ever in California (or maybe you live here like me!), be sure to check out Erewhon! Once you go, you’ll be hooked like me!

Saturday Morning French Toast Made Healthier!

Happy Weekend!  Today I’m sharing my easy, healthier, and scrumptious gluten & dairy-free french toast recipe!
FullSizeRender (56) copy 2

What you’ll need…

  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup almond milk (or dairy-free milk of choice)
  • 2 slices gluten-free bread of choice
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • olive or coconut oil (to grease pan)
  1. Combine the egg, almond milk, and cinnamon in a bowl and whisk together.
  2. Cut bread into halves (traditional style), sticks, or even squares (the shape doesn’t matter for taste, but just makes it fun to eat!).
  3. Lightly coat a griddle pan with olive or coconut oil to avoid the bread sticking to the pan.
  4. Dip bread into the egg/almond milk/cinnamon mixture and make sure it is coated on both sides.
  5. Place the bread on the pan over the stove and cook until both sides are golden brown.
  6. Remove bread from the pan and top with organic maple or agave syrup, fresh fruit, raw cacao sauce (even mixture of cacao powder, coconut oil, and maple syrup), or almond/peanut butter!  The options are endless 🙂
  7. Place on your prettiest Parisian plate!  Mine is from Anthropologie…What is more fitting for some Saturday morning French toast?!

Try This Tuesday: My Favorite Ice Cream in LA

Hello!  I’m sorry it’s been a couple weeks since I’ve blogged!  Since I last wrote to you, I went on vacation, turned 16, and passed my driver’s test!  Needless to say, it’s been a busy past couple weeks.  Anyways, today I want to share with you 3 of my favorite ice cream stops in LA! First, there’s Grom in Malibu, then there’s Kippy’s in Venice, and finally there’s Ice Cream Lab with a few different locations in LA! Each offers delicious dairy-free ice cream you won’t want to miss 🙂

FullSizeRender (56) copy

1) Grom: Malibu, California Made with organic ingredients, this gelato is the perfect treat after a day at the beach!  I love that they are so conscious of different food intolerances and that I have so many options whenever I visit!  My favorites are the melon sorbet and the dairy-free chocolate, so of course I have to get half and half!

2) Kippy’s: Venice, California

FullSizeRender copyFullSizeRender (55)

Kippy’s is amazing!  All their ice cream is organic, dairy-free, vegan, sweetened with raw honey, and coconut based! They have so many delicious flavors such as chocolate, cinnamon, peach, and much, much more!  Plus they have fresh organic fruit, bee pollen, goji berries, date caramel, cacao sauce, and even coconut whipped cream to top your sundae off with!  I ordered the chocolate and vanilla chocolate chip ice creams with hardening cacao sauce.  No matter what you order, you really cannot go wrong!

3) Ice Cream Lab: Beverly Hills/Pasadena/Little Tokyo LA/Westlake Village, California

FullSizeRender (56)        FullSizeRender (52)

I love Ice Cream Lab!  It is so fun to choose my flavor then watch the liquid nitrogen transform my ice cream into this soft, creamy, overall wonderful treat!! My favorites are the vegan chocolate (pictured above) or vanilla (both made with coconut milk and sweetened with agave) topped with sliced almonds!

Try This Tuesday: Juice Crafters

FullSizeRender IMG_8223 IMG_8224 IMG_8226

Last week my mom and I stopped at the Juice Crafters in Brentwood, CA for quick pick-me-up!  We each ordered smoothies and ginger-lemon-cayenne shots!  I love following the spiciness of the shot with the sweetness of the smoothie.  I ordered the “Pacific Love” smoothie which was AMAZING!  It has maca, raw cacao nibs, banana, almond butter, dates, coconut butter, almond milk, bee pollen, and royal jelly!  Together these ingredients made the perfect combination!  My mom ordered the “East West” smoothie which had bananas, strawberries, and apple!  Her smoothie was much simpler in terms of the ingredients, but the flavor was still out of this world!  I definitely recommend stopping by Juice Crafters in one of their locations in either Beverly Hills, Brentwood, or Downtown LA!

The Indie Girl Baking Collaboration

FullSizeRender (52)   FullSizeRender

Last week I collaborated with my dear friend Olivia of The Indie Girl!  We spent the day cooking delicious healthy food!  Each of us wore our favorite 50’s-inspired sundresses!  Olivia is so inspiring, and I love her passion for nutrition, the environment, and health.  Like me, she follows an organic and gluten, dairy, and refined sugar-free diet!  We had a blast discussing healthy food and restaurants, fashion, and just life in general!

DSC04418    DSC04467DSC04436   DSC04437

For lunch, we assembled gluten-free sandwiches using rice almond bread, thinly sliced chicken and turkey, avocado, tomato, mustard, goat cheese, and cucumber! We also split a PB&J sandwich using the same bread as well as organic peanut butter and blackberry jelly (all added sugar-free!).  It was too hot to eat our picnic outside, so we decided to set a pretty table in my dining room instead!  We ate all of this along with organic strawberries and organic cotton candy grapes!  SO delicious!

DSC04410  DSC04415   DSC04491  DSC04423  DSC04489  DSC04498

For dessert, we made s’mores as well as lemon strawberry cupcakes using the recipe from Goodies Against the Grain!  To make the s’mores, we used homemade gluten-free graham crackers from the recipe by A Whisk and Two Wands, 82% dark chocolate, and vegan/gluten-free/gelatin-free marshmallows! Instead of creating a campfire, we roasted the marshmallows over my kitchen stove!  For the cupcakes, we substituted coconut cream for heavy cream  and decided to dip the cupcakes in the strawberry coconut cream as a glaze for the cupcakes instead of frosting them!

I am truly thankful to spend the day with such a compassionate, amazing friend who I know will do incredible things!  Be sure to check out Olivia’s blog and her post of our collaboration here!

DSC04451

Farmers’ Market Finds: Thousand Oaks

FullSizeRender (52)  FullSizeRender

If you live in Southern California, the Thousand Oaks Farmers’ Market is definitely one to check out!  I visited this week with a friend and loved it!   We had so much fun talking to all the vendors, trying the different foods, and buying fun goodies to take home!   My favorite finds were non-GMO, organic yellow watermelon, yellow raspberries, delicious honey dates, and homemade spicy beet chips!

FullSizeRender (52) copy

Buying from local organic farmers is so important for you and your body, for the farmer, for the economy, and for the earth!  Plus, farmers’ markets are so much fun and make for the perfect summer outing! 🙂

Fun Fruity Fact:  1 cup of raspberries contains a third of the daily recommended value of fiber.  Fiber helps slow the breakdown of carbohydrates, keeping you fuller longer and maintaining a more stable blood sugar.  Also, while red watermelon contains the antioxidant lycopene, yellow watermelon’s main antioxidant is beta carotene, which the body converts to Vitamin A.  This helps protects against disease and infection.

Try This Tuesday: Malibu Farm

IMG_0712IMG_0714Malibu Farm is one of my favorite places to go for breakfast (or any meal! 🙂 ). You can sit overlooking the Pacific Ocean on the end of the pier while eating fantastic food! And did I mention everything they serve is organic, fresh, and local?!  It doesn’t get much better than that!  Whenever I go, I always order the farm scrambled eggs (or egg whites) with seasonal vegetables and toast!  Their gluten-free bread is some of the best I’ve tasted!  I also order some of their freshly squeezed ,organic juice–watermelon is my favorite!  So refreshing! The juices featured in the picture above from left to right are good ol’ OJ, watermelon, OJ again, and carrot-beet-orange!  All taste amazing!

IMG_0716

I definitely recommend Malibu Farm if you are ever nearby! It is not only good tasting, but it is also both good for you and good for the earth!

Cookie Dough Dip

Do you ever make cookies, but all you want to eat is the cookie dough?

If your answer is yes, then you’re not alone.

I had heard of cookie dough dips before, so I decided to adapt a recipe for chickpea cookies that I posted on my Instagram a few months back!  Now you don’t even need to bother with making cookies in order to eat cookie dough 🙂  And did I mention it’s gluten and soy-free and vegan?

IMG_4672

 

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 1/8 cup gluten-free oats
  • 1 and 1/2 cups chickpeas (one 15 oz. can, thoroughly rinsed and drained)
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 3 tablespoons organic maple syrup or agave nectar
  • 1 tablespoon almond butter (You can substitute any nut or seed butter, but for those with allergies, coconut oil would probably also work although I have not tried it.)
  • 2 tablespoons almond milk (or any type milk)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup dairy-free chocolate chips (I use Enjoy Life brand)
  • Salt

After draining and rinsing the can of chickpeas, combine all ingredients except chocolate chips in a food processor.  Once everything has blended into a uniform mixture, fold in the chocolate chips.  Eat right away or refrigerate until the cookie dough is cool (my personal preference).  Dip in gluten-free pretzels or anything you want.  I usually just eat it with a spoon–haha!

Welcome to Health and High Heels

Hi, I’m Kendal! ❤ In March of this year I was diagnosed with Lyme Disease after over five years of searching for a diagnosis, and for the past year I have been gluten, dairy, and soy free.  Because of my absolute love for health and fashion, I was inspired to start Health and High Heels!  I have been running Health and High Heels on Instagram since June, but I am so excited to finally launch my new website as well as my new Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest accounts! On the right side of this webpage you will find links to access Health and High Heels via social media.

%d bloggers like this: