Friday, July 29, 2011

Guest Post–How Much Calcium Do I Need?

I am really excited about this post!  When I read it on Team Giles – immediately contacted Lauren and asked her if I could repost it.

I think a huge challenge with being dairy free is getting enough calcium in our diets. I know it’s something I struggle with on a daily basis  - So I found this post really interesting…  Enjoy!

Ps.  Make sure to check out Laurens Blog  - she’s a gorgeous gal with lots of great posts about many different topics.  I especially like her weekend inspirations – always great for a post for the weekend!


I’m Lauren, a 20-something {and holding onto those 20′s… as the end is near} girl, living in Houston, Texas with my awesome husband and hilarious little Yorkshire terrier.

Lauren Team

I’m maintaining a 125lbs weight-loss (note from Jessica – How amazing is she??) . I'm a vegetarian, runner, zumba lover, bootcamp instructor, yoga fan, wanna-be fashionista, list-maker and mega green tea drinker. Thanks for reading my post and feel free to contact me at, I’d love to hear from you!

How Much Calcium Do I Need?

I don’t know why, but lately I’ve been craving cheese. Just in the past couple of days. Um, weird. Maybe my body is begging for some kind of nutrients that I’ve been lacking. So I got busy, as in googled the benefits of cheese…

I found this below from WHFoods:

Health Benefits

Calcium Helps Prevent Colon Cancer, Osteoporosis, Migraine and PMS

In recent studies, calcium has been shown to:

  • Help protect colon cells from cancer-causing chemicals
  • Help prevent the bone loss that can occur as a result of menopause or certain conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis
  • Help prevent migraine headaches in those who suffer from them
  • Reduce PMS symptoms during the luteal phase (the second half) of the menstrual cycle

Calcium is best known for its role in maintaining the strength and density of bones. In a process known as bone mineralization, calcium and phosphorus join to form calcium phosphate. Calcium phosphate is a major component of the mineral complex (called hydroxyapatite) that gives structure and strength to bones. One ounce of low-fat mozzarella cheese provides 18.3% of the daily value for calcium along with 13.1% of the DV for phosphorus.(Please note that the low-fat mozzarella cited throughout this article is not the only type of low-fat cheese that we recommend. We just chose it as an example of a low-fat cheese so that we can highlight this food’s nutritional attributes.)

Calcium also plays a role in many other vital physiological activities, including blood clotting, nerve conduction, muscle contraction, regulation of enzyme activity, cell membrane function and blood pressure regulation. Because these activities are essential to life, the body utilizes complex regulatory systems to tightly control the amount of calcium in the blood, so that sufficient calcium is always available. As a result, when dietary intake of calcium is too low to maintain adequate blood levels of calcium, calcium stores are drawn out of the bones to maintain normal blood concentrations. If a person’s diet does not supply adequate calcium, this situation can result in osteoporosis after many years.


Ok, so maybe I’m lacking calcium? So I found a list of foods that are high in calcium


First of all, I don’t even know what Collard Greens are? No way on the Sardines or Salmon. So thankfully I’m good with the Green Peas, Baked Beans, Oranges and Kale… and of course I love goat cheese. Then all this got me thinking, “How much Calcium do we need daily, anyway?

I found a nifty calculator at Healthy Food Guide (and I looked up some others to double check the answer)…

According to this website and a bunch others, I should be getting roughly 1,000mg a day of Calcium. That’s something I’ve never really paid attention to before… do you?

On the website Healthy Food Guide, they had another list of foods high in calcium…

Perhaps I should pay a little more attention to ALL my nutritional needs, ya know.

In the lists above, what is what of your favorite foods?


Thanks again Lauren for a fantastic post!! Smile

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Simple Buddha Bowl

If you know me, you know I LOVE Buddha's!! Smile 

I also love Buddha bowls – this was a super simple one that I made for a lunch the other day.


Buddha Bowl

Cooked Brown Rice (can use other grains such as millet, quinoa etc.)

Steamed Veggies ( I used zucchini, snap peas, broccoli)

Chopped Almonds



2 TBSP tahini

Juice of 1 lemon (2 TBSP)

1 tsp miso

Sprinkle of sugar or agave (to taste)

A bit of warm water about 3 TBSP

Shake all ingredients together until mixed together – pour over Buddha bowl!


Make sure to update your 30 miles in 30 days walking totals! I’m going to do a blog post about it on Sunday with everyone’s totals!


Up tomorrow – an awesome guest post about how much calcium we need and how to get it!

Jessica signature

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Curried Kebabs

What’s shaken bacon? 

I have a SMOKIN good recipe for you – and it’s easy and customizable. It came from a gouda (yes like the cheese) friend who brought kebabs to a beach fire the other night.


Kebabs + beach fire – beauty!

So I just loved this idea – and then we had to bring food to a birthday party the other night.. que kebabs (I like that word kebab!).

What oh what to marinate the kebabs in?  

                  What is one of my very favourite flavours in the whole wide world?

                                                     CURRY of course!  Red Thai curry to be exact!

Chop up which ever veggies you desire; 

                 Ours included; mushrooms, cherry tomatoes, peppers, onions, zucchini, and fresh pineapple.


Throw into a bowl (or I mean place gently <veggies have feelings you know>)

Mix together in a bowl  (two different options for marinade)

Orange Curry

1/4 cup orange juice

2 TBSP oil (I used grape seed)

2 TBSP red curry paste


Coconut Curry

1/4 cup coconut milk

2 TBSP red curry paste

Dash or so of fish sauce !!

A pinch of sugar!

Pour over veggies and let sit for as long as possible!  A couple of hours at very least!


While marinating you need to soak your skewers so they don’t burn on the BBQ~

Up next it’s time to stack.


I have no rhyme or reason for how I do it, BUT i always start and end with a zucchini piece!

Keep going until everyone is full.

DSC_0919Poor lonely mushroom skewer – somebody in this house hold (no names) doesn’t like mushrooms.



Stack em and get ready to BBQ!


Grill on medium heat until the veggies get to desired level of readiness.

We like our to have char marks on them, and we judge when they are done by the caramelization of the onions!


These ones weren’t grilled enough!  But we were SO hungry!

Awesome idea to bring to a potluck – and make sure you do the fresh pineapple it was amazing!!


You could also make some fruit ones to grill  - think pineapple, peaches, nectarines – maybe even grapes?

I think these might be my favourite summer dinner meal so far!!


What’s your favourite go to summer meal?

Jessica signature

PS.  If you are wanting to the raw thing – just marinate these babies over night and the marinade should soften the veggies!


PSS… if you haven’t noticed – I’m in a a giddy/over tired mood haha.. hopefully I didn’t scare you away!  This post was written WAY past my bedtime!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Super Easy Bruschetta.

First off WOO HOOO to all the 30 miles in 30 days challenge – we already have LOTS of people doing it – SO AWESOME!

In case you didn't’ read yet,  the fundraiser for Susan rose over $26,000!!!  Isn’t that INCREDIBLE?   I honestly cried when I read that!  What an amazing group the blogger (and reader) community is! Smile

Anyways, it’s been forever and a day since I shared a recipe with you!

This one is just a tossed together one – but it’s perfect for this time of year as the tomatoes are incredible!!

Super Easy Bruschetta!


French bread sliced into rounds (1/2 loaf)

3 tomatoes cut into small pieces (see photo above)

Handful of basil – chiffonade

1 tsp. olive oil

1 tsp. nutritional yeast

salt and pepper to taste

Fresh garlic


Toast bread slices under broiler – flip and toast other side.

While bread is still hot – use raw garlic pieces and rub on bread. (both sides for the garlic lover)

Toss tomatoes, basil olive oil, nooch salt and pepper together in a bowl.

Let it sit together in the bowl for a bit to enhance flavour.

Top toasts with tomatoes mixture.

If you want this a warm appy.  Place toasts back under broiler for a few seconds!


___Little Toasts of Perfection___________________________________

That’s it! So easy and so tasty!

Watch out for the next few days – I have an awesome veggie sheesh kabob recipe for you!

Jessica signature

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Exciting Day

Happy Sunday morning!

So I can’t help be excited about tomorrow for a few reasons. 

Tomorrow is the start day of the 30 miles in 30 days challenge!  There has been SUCH an amazing response, and I cannot wait to hear everyone’s progress!  It’s not to late to join us! And thanks to everyone for joining!


Also tomorrow is the opening of the new fitness studio I am working at!  SO excited! Without even opening our doors, we have over 180 people pre-registered!!  I’ve been doing some of the practice classes and LOVE them.


Lastly, my inspiration for all this stuff is Susan.  If you read any blogs out there, you’ve probably heard her story.  Susan is 25, and has just been diagnosed with cancer. Her diagnoses has really inspired me to get out and get active because she was such an active person before the diagnoses and I keep thinking how she would probably give anything to get outside and walk, run or take a fitness class.  I have no excuses. 

Susan Banner 550x169

The blog community has set up the MOST AMAZING fundraiser for her and it’s tomorrow! (July 25th).  The fundraising money will go directly to Susan to help pay for some of her treatments, and as she mentioned today – any left over money will go directly to the oncology ward that she has been on since her diagnoses.   These are the things you can bid on.  Or if you scroll down on the right hand side of the blog – there is a PayPal direct deposit account that you can give money too. 

I am donating my Chocolate Peanut butter (or sun butter) balls…


as well as some of my favourite dairy free chocolates (including rice milk chocolate!).  You can check out my donation here. (I promise to make it a good package ).

There are incredible things up for grabs TONS of things that are available to Canadian people too!  I hope you will check it out.

Jessica signature

Friday, July 22, 2011

Baby Walk this Way–30 miles in 30 days Challenge

So I was talking to a friend, that has a friend that is doing a 30 mile in 30 day challenge. (which equals 48.28km).  To some this might sound like nothing (hello marathoners), but to some this may seem like a huge challenge…

I have been loving walking lately.  They hubby and I have done 2 good hikes around my beautiful town…

Hike #1 -





Such a great time.  Here were the stats from my pedometer iPhone App.



And Hike #2

We took the dog (who loves car rides)


I rocked out in my new t-shirt I won from Karen! (Which makes me feel bad ass).








This trail is filled with hills (and stairs) but here were the stats..


So here’s the deal – I would LOVE to start this Baby Walk this Way - 30 miles in 30 days challenge with anyone interested.   I made up a page on my facebook page and would love for you to join.

Click here to join the group and introduce yourself!

I figure we can start this challenge MONDAY – July 25th and do it for 30 days – which brings us to August 23rd  - if I counted right Winking smile

Each day you walk, run, rollerblade or any thing like this that is extra on top of regular running around– pop by the above page and document what you did and your total. 

For example  Today I walked 4.6km (total 10.2km).  Make sense?

It’s just a friendly challenge, a great way to get to know each other and chit chat! And hopefully we will all inspire each other to get out there! Smile  Just think if you complete the 30 in 30, it’s like doing a marathon and a bit in a month! WOOO.

I’d love to think anyone can do this too- even if you can only do half a km per day, I’d love for you to join us!

Again click here to join the fun!  

PS. if anyone wants to donate prizes – that would be fun too – if not, we can just do it to have good times and to get active!

Jessica signature

Thursday, July 21, 2011

On my plate

Well hello!

Thanks to everyone for the lovely chats on facebook – I didn’t realize that everyone except for West Coasters were having a heat wave!  I love being able to chat with you guys! Feel free to leave notes whenever you like – especially if you have a question – because my comments don’t let me answer!

So… to say I have come up with some amazing goodies in the kitchen would be a lie.  I’ve come up with some really simple – yet satisfying goodies though!    I’ve been working hard at the fitness studio to get it ready for opening on MONDAY – so my meals have been sub par!

My breakfasts have looked like the following  -

This was tasty (weird yes – but tasty also) – Toasted bread with earth balance, nooch and asparagus…  on a paper towel Embarrassed smile.


A new to me granola from Girlnola.  It was SO tasty!! Everything was perfectly crunchy – even after an almond milk bath!  New love!  (more on this later)


I’ve also been loving the breakfast sandwich – Brown bun with tomato, mayo and an egg!


As for lunch and dinner – it’s been equally as sub par…

I’ve been eating homemade pizza like a crazy women – it’s just such a satisfying meal and makes for lots of left overs (double score).

This one was simple; hummus base, caramelized onions, fresh tomatoes and herb de providence.




Once I get bored with the flavours – I add a little bit of dressed salad to the top!


It just adds a bit of extra excitement!


Another thing I have been eating far too much of – which I think is just my protest against summer not being here… SMORES!


Quick, easy microwave smores!! haha 

And THEN I saw that Elizabeth made smore pops!! Are you kiddddddddddding?


Apparently I should have read the directions and not crunched up the smores so tiny – but they are awesome.

DSC_0891 Yup, love them!!

Anywhoo – as you can see – nothing exciting has come out of my kitchen – although last night I made some almond cheese (a different recipe) so if that turns out – I’ll be sure to let you know!!

How is your summer going so far?  Have you been burning up or staying cool?

Jessica signature


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