Tag Archives: By Tara

Your 15 Minute Wellness Ritual

The way we start our day can be the difference between a productive and empowered day and a day
where you are overwhelmed and running behind. Follow this 15 minute morning ritual to get your day
off on the right foot!
Your 15 Minute Wellness Ritual

7-minute Workout
In 2013 the American College of Sport’s Medicine’s Health & Fitness Journal, published a study outlining
12 essential exercises that, when done with high intensity and in order, will keep you fit. Lucky for us we
live in a technological world, so there are now a number of free apps that will walk you through the
exercises at an intensity based on your fitness level. My favorite is the one developed by Johnson &
Johnson. You can download it here. Even if you are able to get in more exercise later on, starting your
morning with this 7 minute routine will get your body primed for the day!
Your 15 Minute Wellness Ritual

5-minute Meditation
Many people are intimidated by meditation because it can seem time consuming and uncomfortable at
first. However, it has been shown that the frequency of meditation is much more important than the
duration. Even as little as 5 minutes can reverse your body’s stress response, reduce blood pressure and
anxiety and increase creativity and your sense of well-being. In short it can make you feel better and
equip you to better deal with every day stressors. A simple but powerful technique is the So Hum
1.Find a quiet and comfortable spot where you won’t be disturbed.
2.Set your timer for 5 minutes so you don’t have to worry about going too long.
3.Close your eyes and begin to bring your attention to the sound of your breath.
4.Take a long slow breath in and hold it briefly before you release it slowly.
5.Now, as you slowly inhale your next breath, silently say the word So
as you slowly release your breath, silently say the word Hum.
6.Repeat So on each inhale and Hum on each exhale for the full 5 minutes. If your mind begins to wander, gently bring your attention back to the words So-Hum.
Your 15 Minute Wellness Ritual

3-minute Green Tea
Finally, it takes 2-3 minutes to brew the perfect cup of green tea. As we discussed a few months ago,
green tea contains an amino acid called theanine, which has been shown to increase the dopamine
levels in the brain – in other words, make you feel freakin fantastic! For an added boost, add a squeeze
of fresh lemon. Citrus helps make the antioxidants more bioavailable for your body so you are
absorbing as much of the health benefits of green tea as possible. So take the last few minutes of your
daily ritual to brew a cup of tea. You end your ritual with a delicious cup of tea in hand and your mind
and body prepared to take on the day!

Your 15 Minute Wellness Ritual

6 Simple Additions That Can Boost Up Your Breakfast

We all know that breakfast is the most important meal of the day.  However, did you know that by simply adding a few key ingredients it can also increase your energy, boost your metabolism and change your cravings for the entire day?  Try these simple additions to help make the most of your breakfast!

Chia Seeds

Chia Seeds are loaded with cholesterol reducing fiber, energizing protein and heart healthy omega-3 fatty acids.  Because they are relatively tasteless and don’t need to be ground like flaxseeds, they are also extremely easy to incorporate into your day.

Try adding 1tbsp of chia seeds to 1 cup of Greek yogurt and ½ cup fresh fruit for a refreshing and energizing start to your day.

Egg Yolk

The egg yolk has gotten a bad rap because it is where the cholesterol and majority of the calories are found in the egg.  However, it has recently been discovered that dietary cholesterol does not significantly impact body cholesterol.  Moreover, the egg yolk contains high levels of choline, which helps improve brain function.

Try adding 1-2 whole eggs to your morning egg scramble for a brain boosting beginning of your day.

Almond Butter

Almonds are one of the most nutrient dense nuts, which means that calorie for calorie you are getting more vitamins and minerals than any other nut.  One tablespoon of almond butter also contains as much protein as the same amount of animal meat.  Protein keeps you satisfied much longer and helps reduce your cravings for sugars and refined carbohydrates.

Try adding 1tbsp of almond butter to ½ cup of oatmeal for a sustaining start to your day.



Hemp Hearts

Hemp hearts are a completely amazing yet underrated source of vegan protein.  A single serving of 3 tbsp., has 10 grams of protein, 10 grams of Omegas and 3 grams of fiber. They have a texture similar to sunflower seeds but with an even more delicate flavor, making them a perfect way to sneak in extra protein to your plant based breakfast without changing the taste.

Try adding 3tbsp of hemp hearts to your morning smoothie for a nutrient balanced start to your day.

Green Tea

One of the most powerful components of green tea is its high level of the antioxidant EGCG.  EGCG has been shown to protect your cells and have a powerful impact on cardiovascular health.  A study at Purdue University showed that the simple step of adding lemon juice increased the amount of EGCG by up to six times!

Try adding fresh lemon juice to your green tea first thing in the morning for a heart healthy day.


Vegetables are our best source of vitamins and minerals.  Unfortunately we typically wait until the end of the day to incorporate them.  Vegetables are also high in fiber so trying to get the recommended 5 servings in one sitting can be daunting, if not uncomfortable!  Breakfast is a great time to incorporate more vitamin filled vegetables, which will help you feel full longer as well as energized from the added vitamins and minerals.

Try adding ½ cup of chopped vegetables to your egg scramble or sneaking in 1 cup of leafy greens to your morning smoothie for an invigorating start to your day.

This week try adding one of these simple breakfast additions and be sure to let me know how it goes!

Four Foods to Boost Your Mood

Staying Hydrated with Electrolytes
We all have rough days.  Maybe you are stressed out with work, overwhelmed with your kids schedule or just plain blue.  However, did you know that in many cases food can be your best defense against feeling down in the dumps?  That’s right, many foods contain nutrients that actually help boost your mood and give you a little pick-me-up to get you through your day!  Here are my 4 favorite mood boosting foods:

Cashews – Often called “nature’s anti-depressant”, cashews contain high levels of the amino acid Tryptophan.  Tryptophan is also what is found in turkey and what is responsible for that warm and fuzzy feeling after Thanksgiving dinner!  It is broken down into serotonin, which gives your body a feeling of well-being.

Mood Boosting Tip: Combine ¼ cup cashews and a piece of fruit for a great afternoon snack!

Salmon – Studies have shown that people with higher levels of Omega-3 fatty acids in their blood stream reported a better sense of well-being and were found to be more agreeable.   Omega-3 fatty acids actually changes the way your brain functions (in a good way!) so it’s important to make it a consistent part of your diet.  Shoot for fish 2-3 days/week!

Mood Boosting Tip: Not a big fan of fish?  Flaxseeds and walnuts are also great sources of Omega-3 fatty acids!

Staying Hydrated with Electrolytes

Green Tea – Green tea contains an amino acid called theanine, which has been shown to increase the dopamine levels in the brain.  Another study showed that participants who consumed theanine were less likely to experience increased heart rate and other stress related symptoms during a stressful task – think less palm sweats, heart racing and knees knocking during a presentation!

Mood Boosting Tip: Switch out your afternoon coffee for a cup of green tea or try icing it for a late summer cool down!

Dark Chocolate – Dark chocolate stimulates the productions of endorphins.  Endorphins are the chemicals in your brain that causes you to feel pleasure – and have you ever seen anyone eat chocolate and not smile?!

Mood Boosting Tip: Try this Dark Chocolate Nut Cluster recipe for a delicious stress release!