7 Healing Spices from Your Kitchen Pharmacy

By: Holli Thompson

In the colder months, keep warming herbs in mind and ready to use in your kitchen. Some spices help with weight loss by creating heat, which revs your metabolism and improves circulation. Some herbs have properties that boost immunity and protect you from viruses. Others help soothe the stomach and digestion, fight inflammation, and even replace essential minerals. Check out this kitchen pharmacy that’s good to follow all year long. 

Cinnamon is at the top of my list for warming up and boosting the metabolism. It’s antibacterial and good for immune support during cold and flu season. Try using it as a natural sweetener in smoothies, or sprinkled on roasted squash, carrots, and root vegetables. 

Turmeric is a traditional ingredient in curry powder—it’s what gives the mixture its yellow color. Turmeric is used around the globe as an anti-inflammatory. It’s now becoming a popular means to help reduce inflammation and joint pain Try adding turmeric to your savory stews or soups. It adds color and flavor and gives a homemade touch to the store-bought kind. 

Ginger is one of my all-time favorite herbs and something that I eat almost daily. It’s known for fighting nausea, which is why as a kid you may have been given ginger ale for an upset stomach. (Sadly, most ginger ales on the market today do not contain real ginger.) It’s anti-inflammatory, relieves pain, and is warming to the body. I enjoy ginger in my green juice or smoothie. I always recommend fresh, organic ginger if you can find it. Your health food store probably has the organic kind; your grocery store has the regular kind. If you use non-organic ginger, just be sure to peel it first. Dried ginger is great to keep on hand if you need it in a pinch, but the flavor isn’t as fresh and pungent.

Nutmeg is an ingredient in pumpkin pie spice; where would we be without it at Thanksgiving? Like cinnamon, nutmeg is naturally sweet but nutty, and has antiviral properties as well. Try adding nutmeg to your vanilla smoothies for a taste similar to eggnog.

Cloves boost immunity, too, and are antiviral and anti-inflammatory. Cloves always remind me of my childhood; we used to push them into oranges to create a natural potpourri. (I still ask my son and his friends to do this every holiday.) Clove is wonderful added to stews for an exotic flavor. Use it sparingly, however; this spice is potent and a little goes a long way.

Garlic improves circulation and helps prevent blood clots, making it a natural choice for heart health. Garlic is an immune system powerhouse: it kills parasites, helps you heal, and is antibacterial and antiviral. And, of course, it adds a wonderful, pungent flavor to just about anything.

Cardamom is another spice commonly used in curry dishes. It’s actually a member of the ginger family. It’s an antioxidant, and contains potassium, magnesium, and other essential minerals. In addition to spicing up stews, try some cardamom along with cinnamon in drinking water once the weather turns cold for a warming, spicy effect.

For more seasonal facts, recipes, nutrition and healing, check out Holli’s book, Discover Your Nutritional Style.

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A 20 Minute ‘Do Anywhere’ Workout

By: Isabel Smith, MS, RD, CDN

You’ll never find me on vacation without my sneakers, my iPod and maybe a jump rope. Taking my exercise with me is key when I travel, and although my travel routine may be slightly different than my routine when I’m home, finding easy ways to move my body helps to keep me balanced, happy and fit.

To help you stay on track during your holiday traveling, here is an easy, body-weight (you don’t need any equipment for this except your sneakers and yourself) workout that you can do anywhere to target all areas of your body.

What you’ll need:
– Sneakers (athletic shoes)
– Stopwatch (you can use your phone)
– Water bottle (don’t forget to hydrate!)

Warm up (2 minutes)
Hardest: Easy jog in place for 2 minutes
Low Impact: March in place

Helps to: Warm your body up and get you ready for a workout.

Get started!

Cardio (3 minutes)
Hardest: Star jacks (think of an over-exaggerated jumping jack)
Modification: Jumping jacks
Low Impact: Remove the jump and simply move arms and legs in in the motion of the jack without jumping
Helps to: Get your heart rate up and get you warm.

Body-weight Circuit (3 minutes)
10 lunges: Alternate legs for a total of 5 on each side; to make this move harder add a jump after each lunge

10 squats: Focus on keeping your knees in-line with your toes; for good form, or to modify try couch squats; to make this move harder add a small jump or toe-lift after each squat.

10 push-ups: Focus on keeping your abs and glutes tight; to modify, try doing the push-ups on your knees, keep your stomach and glutes tight; if you’re unable to get onto the floor try wall-push-ups.

Note: To make this circuit harder try doing 15 or 20 of each (lunges, squats, push-ups)

Cardio (3 minutes)
To get your heart-rate back up jog, march, or walk in place for three minutes.

Body-weight Circuit (3 minutes – repeat body-weight circuit)
10 lunges: Alternate legs for a total of 5 on each side; to make this move harder add a jump after each lunge
10 squats: Focus on keeping your knees in-line with your toes; for good form, or to modify try couch squats; to make this move harder add a small jump or toe-lift after each squat.
10 push-ups: Focus on keeping your abs and glutes tight; to modify, try doing the push-ups on your knees, keep your stomach and glutes tight; if you’re unable to get onto the floor try wall-push-ups.

Cardio: (2 minutes)
To get your heart rate back up, do two more minutes of jumping jacks (or add in star-jacks to make it harder), or if you’re more comfortable, jog, march or walk in place.

Abdominals (1 minute)
Plank: Hold a plank on your hands or forearms for one minute (or if you’re unable to get onto the floor, try a wall-plank or try a mini-circuit of 10 secondsplank, 10 seconds rest for a total of five times to total one minute.

Cool down (3 minutes)
Stretch: Make sure that you stretch and take time to slow down after your workout; it is also important to rehydrate properly by drinking 64-80 oz of water every day.

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8 Human Foods Your Pet Should Never Eat

By: Isabel Smith, MS, RD, CDN

Most dogs (including my 6 pound Yorkshire Terrier, Sasha) love to eat vegetables, fruits and other human foods. While some vegetables and human scraps can provide vitamins and minerals, there are many others that can be extremely dangerous and potentially fatal. Since I think it’s important to keep my dogs healthy as much as myself and my clients, I want to share with you the top 8 foods and food groups that may be dangerous to the health of your pet.

1. Avocados
Humans love avocados. They’re creamy, delicious, and loaded with anti-inflammatory properties and heart-healthy benefits. However, for our four-legged friends such as horses and even for some dogs (and even two-legged friends like birds), avocados can be very dangerous! Avocados contain a compound called persin, which can cause severe vomiting and diarrhea, and in birds may cause severe congestion and possibly even fluid around the heart. Although some dogs may not get sick from avocados it’s important to limit how much they have if you do choose to let them eat it.

2. Garlic, Onions, and Chives
Garlic, onions and chives have many healthful compounds including allicin that may contain anti-cancer properties for humans; but for dogs and especially cats, garlic, onions and chives can cause severe gastrointestinal irritation, so try to keep your pets away.

3. Grapes & Raisins
Grapes and raisins are popular when it comes to sprinkling on salads or enjoying as a snack; but be careful not to let those slip off your plate and onto the floor and into the paws of your pet. The toxic compound in grapes and raisins has yet to be identified, but in both dogs and cats, raisins and grapes can cause kidney failure.

4. Chocolate, Coffee and Caffeine
Although extremely popular with humans, chocolate, coffee and caffeine are especially dangerous to pets as they contain compounds called methylxanthines. Methylxanthines can cause vomiting and diarrhea, excessive thirst, abnormal heart rhythm and hyperactivity in pets. Symptoms can also include tremors and seizures and in some severe cases, death. It’s important to keep these foods away from pets, and to be especially careful of darker chocolates as they contain more methylxanthine.

5. Dairy
Like many lactose-intolerant humans, pets do not produce a lot of the enzyme, lactase, which is necessary for breaking down the carbohydrate lactose found in dairy products. Therefore, when pets (like humans) consume too many lactose-containing foods (milk, cheese, ice cream) they too can end up with diarrhea, gas and other uncomfortable gastro-intestinal symptoms. Although many pets may be sensitive to lactose-containing foods, pet-owners often choose to use cheese for training- if this is the case, choose a lower-lactose cheese such as cheddar.

6. Xylitol
We tell humans not to eat artificial sugars and sugar alcohols, and pets shouldn’t have them either. Xylitol is a sugar alcohol found in many candies and when consumed can cause insulin release from the pancreas that can lead to hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) and severe liver damage. In addition, xylitol can also cause gastro-intestinal distress such as vomiting and diarrhea. Keep this and other artificial sugars (as well as sugars) away from your pets.

7. Alcohol
I know many dogs that love to take a sip of their owners alcoholic beverage, but it’s important to keep alcohol-containing beverages far away from pets. Alcohol can cause changes to your pets nervous and respiratory systems and in some cases can be fatal.

8. Yeast Dough
Next time you make fresh pizza-dough, or any other yeast-containing dough, be sure it doesn’t fall onto the floor and get into the paws of your pet. Yeast-containing doughs (especially when raw) can cause major gastrointestinal distress as well as lethargy and may even cause low body temperature in pets. Cooked doughs are slightly less dangerous, but consider limiting them too.

If you want to make a special human treat for your furry friends this weekend, try adding a small amount of juice pulp to their bowl of food!

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Magnesium: Why You Need It & How to Get It

By: Isabel Smith, MS, RD, CDN

If there’s one nutrient we’ve all been hearing a lot more of lately, it’s magnesium. And there’s a reason for that. Find out why this nutrient is so important and how you can get more of it.

We Need Magnesium For:

  • Energy production from carbohydrates (plants and grains) and fats (nuts and seeds, oils, avocado)
  • Antioxidant production; glutathione, that helps to fight and repair naturally-occurring damage that happens within our bodies
  • Hydration; magnesium plays an important role in getting key electrolytes into muscles and tissues that are important for proper hydration
  • Muscle contraction; magnesium plays a role moving important electrolytes (calcium and potassium) that are key in sending nerve impulses for muscle contraction- including maintaining heart rhythm
  • Regulate calcium levels within the blood (calcium is important for muscle contraction as well as bone health)
  • Bone health; magnesium plays an important role in building bone
  • Wound healing
  • Sleep regulation; people who don’t get enough magnesium may find they experience disrupted sleep
  • Insulin sensitivity, which means that the tissues in the body respond better to insulin, a hormone that acts to remove sugar from the blood (with type 2 diabetes the tissues become very insensitive and unresponsive to insulin- causing higher blood sugar levels)

Recent studies have found that we also might need magnesium for:

  • Aiding depression as it may help to raise serotonin levels – the “feel happy” hormone
  • Improving insulin sensitivity that may help to improve blood glucose control in people with pre-diabetes and diabetes
  • Soothing pain and soreness in fibromyalgia (research is preliminary and more studies are needed)
  • Helping reduce risk for high blood pressure and heart disease
  • Improving migraine headaches
  • Improving insomnia related to Restless Leg Syndrome

…I think it’s safe to say that magnesium plays an important role in the body!

So, how much magnesium do you need?
The recommended intake for magnesium on a daily basis is 410-420 mg/day for men and 310-320 mg/day for women. With processed food consumption on the rise, many people are not getting enough from their diet because processed foods do not contain adequate amounts of magnesium.

Where can you get magnesium?
Fruits & Vegetables

  • Dark leafy greens (Spinach has 157 mg in 1 cup cooked)
  • Parsnips: 45 mg per 1 cup
  • Squash: 43 mg per 1 cup cooked summer squash
  • Potatoes: 57 mg per 1 baked potato
  • Tomatoes: 58 mg per 1 cup canned
  • Banana: 40 mg per 1 cup

 Unrefined Whole Grains

  • Barley: 158 mg per 1 cup uncooked
  • Bulgur: 230 mg per 1 cup uncooked
  • Oats: 63 mg per 1 cup cooked

Beans & Legumes

  • Black beans: 120 mg per 1 cup boiled
  • Chickpeas: 80 mg per 1 cup boiled
  • Lentils: 70 mg per 1 cup boiled
  • Peanuts: 50 mg per 1 ounce

Nuts & Seeds

  • Pumpkin seeds: 98 mg per 1 cup
  • Almonds: 80 mg per 1 ounce
  • Cashews: 75 mg per 1 ounce 

Animal Protein

  • Halibut: 90 mg per 3 oz cooked
  • Fruit

Now that you know everything about magnesium, it’s time to start getting more of it!

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9 Things to Know Before Eating Thanksgiving Dinner

By: Jamie Webber

If you’re celebrating Thanksgiving on Thursday (or celebrating any large meals during the upcoming holiday season), you might want to listen up. This morning on “The Today Show”, Dr. Brian Wansink, who is also one of our experts in Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead 2, goes behind the scenes of a family’s Thanksgiving meal to find out just how many calories they are really eating. It’s shocking. One of the most interesting points Dr. Wansink makes is how many calories were consumed BEFORE the actual meal even started — the family featured in the segment was eating while food was still being cooked, taste-testing, and drinking wine.  You have to watch the clip to get the full understanding, it’s quite eyeopening.

Watch it here.

Hearing from Dr. Wansink this morning made me think that there are a few more easy tips we should all be cognizant of this holiday season — tips that still allow you to enjoy yourself but remind you of making small changes that can add up to a healthier holiday season.

To gather helpful tips I reached out to our Reboot nutritionists Stacy Kennedy and Isabel Smith to give me their most helpful pointers for having a healthy Thanksgiving.

Reboot Nutritionist Isabel Smith, MS, RD, CDN shares simple tips to help you make small healthy changes.

1. Don’t Eat Too Much Too Soon
Research suggests, like you see from the Dr. Wansink clip on the Today Show, we can consume as many as 1200+ calories before we even sit down to eat our Thanksgiving meal. To avoid this, be mindful of how much you eat before you sit down to the meal – that includes appetizers, taste-testing, and drinking. Have a bowl of raw carrots in the kitchen and save all your taste-testing for when you sit down to enjoy a beautiful meal, and if you’re enjoying wine try to stick to one glass before the dinner actually starts.

2. Don’t Be Scared of the “V” Word (We’re Talking Vegetables)
The V word at Thanksgiving shouldn’t scare you away. There are so many delicious vegetable-based meals that are full of flavor, color, and texture that make a nice hearty addition to your meal. Think Maple Cinnamon Sweet Potatoes, a Kale Salad with Pine Nuts & Cranberries, and Exotic Squash, Carrot & Apple Soup.  If you load your plate with 50% vegetables, while still allowing for some of your classic favorites to fit on the plate, you may be saving yourself hundreds of calories. What if nobody brings or makes vegetables or salad?No problem, offer to bring something that you’ll love to eat and know is healthy.

3. Skip the Seconds
Yes, we know many of you love to go back for seconds or thirds or fourths (we do, too), but do your best to take what you really want the first round to avoid going back up for more platefuls of food. Those extra platefuls of food can leave you feeling guilty and overloaded later– all of which are unnecessary negative feelings; so do your best to savor your plate the first time around. If you do end up going back for seconds because the food is just too good, aim for small servings because all you probably want is one more taste anyway!

4. Drink More
No, not wine, water! Although, if you plan to enjoy (or two) a glass of wine it’s important to drink a glass of water in between each glass so you don’t find yourself four glasses in midway through dinner. Being mindful of not only what you drink but how much could save you hundreds of calories. Drinking adequate water throughout the meal can also help you feel satisfied sooner. We often mistake thirst for hunger, so make sure you drink enough fluids throughout the day to not only help keep you hydrated, but also to save you calories.

5. Sign Up for the Turkey Trot 
If the you go up for fourths, you drink a bottle of wine and you pass on the veggies and that 3,500 calorie Thanksgiving meal happens, you might want to get up and move to start burning some of it off! Here’s how long would it take to burn 3.500 calories.

  • 6 hours at 5 mph on a treadmill
  • 5 hours of swimming
  • 8-9 hours of cycling

Once you remind yourself of these simple tips, consider these healthy swaps that Reboot Nutritionist Stacy Kennedy, MPH, RD, CSO, LDN suggests:

6. Skip the Cranberry Sauce
It’s easy to just purchase cranberry sauce at the grocery store in a can but so often these cans are not BPA-free and the added ingredients are high fructose corn syrup, corn syrup, and sugar. Instead of this processed, canned side try making your own cranberry sauce, like this one from the Food Babe, or get creative and wow your guests with delicious sides made with fresh cranberries. Cranberries are naturally rich in antioxidants and other cancer fighting phytonutrients so take advantage of their goodness by making one of these: <a “href=”http://www.rebootwithjoe.com/vegan-spinach-cranberry-stuffed-acorn-squash/”>Vegan Cranberry and Spinach Stuffed Acorn Squash, <a ” href=”http://www.rebootwithjoe.com/smart-sweet-vegan-apple-cranberry-barley-pudding/”>Vegan Apple Cranberry Barley PuddingChopped Cranberry ‘N Collards Salad.

7. Go Easy on the Gravy
If you can’t resist your Mom’s gravy, then go easy on the serving size — think no more than 1 tablespoon. You can also bring your own plant-powered gravy, like this Gravy Recipe from Whole Foods, to impress your family with a healthier, but still tasty, option.

8. You Don’t Need Cream for Creamed Spinach
This may come as a surprise, but this Guilt-Free Creamless “Creamed” Spinach Recipe might be a new favorite at your table this year.  Making this will help you pass on the heavy cream and butter that’s in this classic “vegetable” dish.

9. Mix and Match a Mashed Potato Recipe
There are lots of ways to recreate this traditional dish. Avoid adding tons of cream, butter sour cream and instead check out these bright and vibrant options like Garlic Mashed Sweet Potatoes, Garlic Cauliflower  Mash, and Smashed Purple Potatoes. Wondering if sweet or white are better… you may be surprised!

The Reboot Team wishes you and your family a happy, healthy, and fun Thanksgiving holiday!

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9 Tips for Long Term Health

By: Isabel Smith, MS, RD, CDN

You’re set up on your 5 day juice plan or your 3 day overhaul, and everything seems great because you have a “plan”. The challenge arrives when the plan ends, how do you proceed? What comes next?

When your plan ends, your health goals don’t have to. Try incorporating these 9 key tips to continue a healthy lifestyle plan. Remember that we’re all different and making a plan that works for you is essential.

1. Stick to a Plan:
It’s key to stick to a plan. Plans are what help us formulate a menu, a method for staying on track, and most of all, they give us framework from which to move forward. Most “diet plans” have a plan, so why can’t we have a regular healthy eating plan? The answer is, we can, and we should. Before finishing whatever short term plan you’re on, make sure you come up with some sort of framework for which to move forward, so that when day 1 of “normal eating” hits, you have something to work off of.

To make this plan, start with one or two goals — eat 3 meals per day, moderate portion sizes, drink juice every day, etc. Once you’ve accomplished these first few goals, continue incorporating them and start to add a few more, and determine which ones make you feel best.

2. Don’t Go Overboard:
Once the first few goals have been accomplished, then it’s safe to move forward. When we try to accomplish everything at once it usually ends up in mass-chaos and leads to more disappointment than anything else. It’s key to remember that baby steps usually lead to longer term accomplishments, so it’s ok to start slowly, and try to pick goals that aren’t too far out of reach to get you going. Even after you have accomplished what you initially hoped to accomplish, keep making goals.

3. Make the Most of Your Weekend:
Find time during your weekend to plan for the week; this means don’t wait until the night before to think of what you’ll have the following day for your meals away from home. Although this can sometimes be challenging, planning for as much as you can really does make a difference. Remember that when you prepare foods in your own home you’re choosing what goes in them, therefore controlling the ingredients is simpler.

Take advantage of the refrigerator and freezer when it comes to prepping ahead. When it comes to juices, you can store in the fridge for 24-72 hours and freezer for 5 days, and likewise with entrees, soups, etc. Make a big batch of simple foods that can be made for the week; for example a big batch of sautéed vegetables, a quinoa/vegetable salad and a few juices (remember to tailor this to your needs). That way you have prepared even beyond what you thought you needed, so it’s always ready and on-hand.

4. Stay Excited:
Don’t get bored with your plan! It can be modified with new ways to spice it up. If you have planned out that you’re going to have an 8-10 oz. juice every mid-afternoon, try different juice recipes so your taste buds don’t get bored. There are a ton of fabulous recipes for juices, smoothies, entrees, and even desserts (and much more!) on www.rebootwithjoe.com– check them out for great recipe ideas!

5. Keep the Right Tools in Your Toolbox:
Now that you’ve identified some great recipes and have a plan for continued healthful eating, it’s important that you have the right kitchen tools to sustain your plan. Kitchen tools come in all sorts of shapes and with a variety of different price tags — and it’s important to remember that the most expensive option isn’t always the best one; great kitchen tools can be affordable so do your research. Here are a few of my must-have kitchen tools and storage containers.

  • Mason jars: These glass-containers are inexpensive, free of plastic and can be used for storing a variety of different items form juices to oatmeal and salads. In my household I always try to have extra mason jars on hand so I can use them to store as much leftover food as possible. Also, I don’t worry about putting the glass containers in the dishwasher, so cleanup is easy (note: I wash lids by hand because the metal ones will rust if exposed to the dishwasher).
  • Spiralizer: Another inexpensive and fantastic staple in my kitchen. The spiralizer is fun to use, and allows you to make noodles out of virtually any long and thin vegetable (zucchini, carrots, cucumber, sweet potato) and adds a lot of fun to any meal. Additionally, these vegetable-based pastas created from the spiralizer contain many more nutrients and are much lower in calories than traditional pastas.
  • Blender: This one may be obvious, but the blender is another versatile and fantastic addition to the kitchen. It not only allows for making healthy smoothies, but you can use it to blend soups and even make frozen banana ice cream and chia-seed pudding. Blenders also come in all sizes, shapes and at different price points, and although there are great perks to a more expensive blender, a basic blender will do the trick so work within your means.
  • Juicer: Another obvious one!  Having the juicer in the kitchen allows you to more efficiently separate the pulp and to reap the benefits of a greater amount of phytonutrients among many other things. Check out our Juicer Buying Guide if you’re in the market, and review our helpful infographic that clarifies the difference between blending and juicing.
  • Mini food processor: Food processors can be quite expensive, but the smaller ones are less expensive and are often on sale, and add a lot to your ability to make healthy recipes. Food processors are wonderful because they are more able to powerfully blend items such as nuts and also blend more consistently, which is key for making items like the crust for cauliflower pizza and the base of many Smart Sweets. This one isn’t an absolute must, but if you find a 3-4 cup mini processor on sale it’s a great purchase!


 6. Don’t Stop Eating:
Okay, only eat when you’re hungry, but don’t cut out meals. One of the biggest mistakes I see people make is reducing the number of times per day that they eat to only one or two in an effort to cut back on total calories consumed. This simply doesn’t work when it comes to overall healthful lifestyle and particularly for weight management and continued weight loss.

One of the most important reasons to eat small and frequent balanced meals and snacks throughout the day is to maintain balanced blood glucose levels. Larger meals can cause peaks in blood sugar levels that the body manages by releasing insulin to help shuttle the sugar out of the blood stream and into the tissues. Insulin is very effective at two major processes: getting sugar in to the tissues and muscles, and causing the body to store extra fat, and particularly in the most dangerous area; the abdomen. Abdominal fat has been found to be significantly more dangerous than gluteal fat (think apple vs pear-shaped) given that it has a greater effect on heart health and on risk for diabetes.

Sticking to a plan (similar to what we offer on the Reboot for those of you who have ever participated in a DIY, “do it yourself,” or Guided Reboot) that includes 5-6 small and frequent meals and snacks tends to be much more effective at maintaining healthy blood glucose levels that correlates to satiety, energy, mood, and with promoting healthful choices and continued healthful lifestyle.

7. Move No Matter What:
Not only because it’ll help you burn a few hundred calories (depending on its intensity), but because it’ll also help you to clear your mind. A jog, a walk, or even a quick down-dog can be helpful in clearing the mind. After all, a clearer mind means better decision-making, so this can be particularly important when it comes to continuing to make good decisions and with helping you to stay on track. The Reboot Movement Method has an exercise plan for all levels.

8. Seek Support:
Support from friends, family, pets, siblings, coworkers, etc. is key to keeping you on track. Ask a friend or family member to take a walk with you, or try engaging your children in the juice-making process (kids love it!), or even tell your coworkers of your healthy behavior modification and get them involved. All these things count, so lean on those around you because it really makes a difference. You can also join our incredible community.

9. Falling off is Not Failure:
Let’s be honest, no one is perfect, and it’s more than likely that you’re going to experience a bump in the road; so when it happens, tighten your seat belt and keep moving along. It’s okay to fall off, just make sure you get back on and don’t look back. We cannot control what happened yesterday, but we certainly are in control of what happens tomorrow so be kind to yourself. A more forgiving mindset lends itself to continued success moving forward and generally allows for increased adherence to healthy eating and more movement.

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Juicing vs. Blending: Everything You Need to Know

By: Joe Cross

One of the most common questions people ask me is “Joe, what is the difference between juicing and blending?” Now, you might think the difference is obvious – but it turns out there’s a lot of confusion about the two, and many people believe they are juicing when in fact they are blending. So, let’s clear things up!

When juicing, the machine extracts the juice (this is the water and most of the nutrients the produce contains), leaving behind the pulp. When blending, there is no left-over pulp. Blenders pulverize the whole produce to make a smoothie.

What can make this confusing is that these machines all use different names. If you see the term “Nutrition Extractor™”, for example, how do you know if you are juicing or blending? Simply ask yourself the question: is the machine removing the pulp? If not, it’s not juicing!

But Joe, which one is better?

The short answer is, I love both.

I look at it this way: we all need plenty of fresh vegetables and fruit in our diet, whether we eat, juice, or blend them. They are nutrient dense powerhouses, and however we choose to take them in – it’s all good!

Juicing and blending are both great ways to include a lot of produce in our diet, and also to consume a greater variety than we may otherwise eat. But they are different and it is important to understand why.

When you juice you are removing the insoluble fiber – the pulp. Don’t get me wrong. Fiber is good for you. It keeps your digestive tract healthy and it slows down the absorption of sugar. But it also slows down the absorption of nutrients and some nutrients stay in the fiber. When you juice, you are extracting up to 70% of the nutrition right into your glass [1], and without the insoluble fiber your body absorbs 100% of these nutrients.

Take a look at the ingredients you use next time you make a Mean Green juice for example, and imagine eating that as a huge bowl of salad at every meal – you’d be chewing all day! Even in smoothie, that’s a lot of produce to consume.

Still concerned about fiber? One of our Reboot nutritionists, Claire, has written a great post explaining the facts about fiber and juicing.

On a Reboot, which is best?

You have two options when selecting a Reboot plan: juice only, or juice plus eating an exclusively fruit and vegetable diet. Both are great, and which you choose will depend on your goals and your current state of health. You can read more about these options and the different Reboot plans, or find more information in my book The Reboot with Joe Juice Diet.

If you are Rebooting for health reasons, or have modest weight loss goals, an eating Reboot may be a better option. However, if you are Rebooting because you have moderate to high weight loss goals, a juicing Reboot is a better option. When you juice only, you tend to lose weight more rapidly.

I’m frequently asked “Can I use my blender/Vitamix/NutriBullet on a Reboot?” You can, but if you do so you are doing an ‘eating’ Reboot: the plan you follow will be different, the juice recipes will need to be modified (they are a created for a juicer!), and the results you see may also be different.

Still confused? Watch me make a juice and a smoothie in the Reboot Kitchen. You’ll see what the difference is!


And to further help you understand the differences between juicing and blending we’ve put together the following Juicing Vs. Blending Infographic. Here’s a sneak peak (click on the image to see it in its entirety!)

[1] Nutritional yield analysis conducted via independent laboratory testing. See http://storypages.foodthinkers.com/keep-the-nutrients/ for more information and to download the full findings.

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“Natural” Not Always from Nature

By: Stacy Kennedy, MPH, RD, CSO, LDN; Reboot Nutritionist

Health claims are in the hot seat causing us to pause and look at the true definitions of common ingredient or nutrition related terms we use everyday.  Many are not what they seem. And some don’t mean anything at all.

Recently, the term “natural” was called into question by Consumer Reports.  With roughly 60% of Americans surveyed looking for “natural” on the label when shopping, knowing exactly what that means is paramount.

When we see “natural” we think the food is nutritionally superior; free of hormones, additives, artificial ingredients, preservatives, GMOs, colors, etc. And a great choice for someone pursing a healthy lifestyle or for growing kids.

Sadly, this isn’t actually the case.  In fact, according to the Federal Drug Administration (FDA)’s Center for Science and Nutrition; the agency charged with regulating health claims and food labels, there is no definition for “natural.” Despite a lack of definition or endorsement of the term, they don’t object to its use with foods free of artificial flavors, added colors or synthetic compounds.

More concerning, officials admit the inherent issue with evaluating processed foods with the lens of a term like natural, “From a food science perspective, it is difficult to define a food product that is ‘natural’ because the food has probably been processed and is no longer the product of the earth.”

All the more reason to be your own advocate and seek out the ingredient list on packaged foods with a critical eye.  And to make most of your meals and snacks at home!  Like fresh juices made with just veggies and fruits straight from the earth…Doesn’t get any more natural than that!

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10 Health Tips for Our Reboot Moms

By: Stacy Kennedy, MPH, RD, CSO, LDN; Reboot Nutritionist

We all love our moms and want them to be healthy and happy at every age.  As a busy mom juggling family, work and a long list of to-dos we often attend to our own needs last and sometimes they fall by the wayside.   In order to best take care of our loved ones it’s important to remember to put your own oxygen mask on first.  Whether you want to help your mom stay healthy or you’re a mom in need of some TLC, check out my top 10 tips for keeping mom healthy all year long.

1.) Drink at least one juice or smoothie a day.  You’ll get a burst of energizing, immune supporting nutrients plus an energy balance that can help promote a healthy weight.

2.) Sleep! Sleep not only helps us look and feel brighter but plays a key role in maintaining a healthy metabolism.  Read all about why When you Snooze you Lose (and that’s a good thing!).

3.) Stretch.  Maintaining flexibility is tough as we age and poor flexibility can lead to problems with daily aches and pains.  Check out these Reboot-friendly fitness tips that are good for every age.

4.) Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. Drink plenty of water.  Staying hydrated is key for beautiful skin, energy levels, keeping a healthy weight and just plain feeling great!

5.) Walk.  Walking is one of the best exercises and it’s always available!  An indoor walk can work on a cold, snowy day.  Women who walked 3-5 hours per week were 40% less likely to have their breast cancer return compared to women who did not walk.

6.) Make time for friends.  Social time that allows you to connect with peers and friends is important for overall health.  Support from others is essential for your well-being.

7.) Avoid the clean plate club. Don’t finish your own or your kids’ meals if you’re not hungry.  Even those small bites can start adding up over time.

8.) Meditate.  Go to yoga or try a quick meditation to help focus, calm, reset and support your immune system.

9.) Laugh.  We’ve all heard that laughter is the best medicine and turns out, it’s true.

10.)  Carry healthy snacks.  Nuts, fresh fruits and veggies, homemade granola bars make great snacks for energy on the go.  Eating more often can help to keep appetite, blood sugar and cravings in check.  Of course healthy choices are important.  Check out these ideas for more.

To all the wonderful mothers out there, have a happy and healthy Mother’s Day!

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