Why are we so overwhelmed?

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I often hear my mom comment to my sister during a particularly stressful episode with her (much-adored) grandchildren that, “It wasn’t like this raising you two.”

Overwhelm seems to be the plague of the 21st century in North America. For most of us, life has never been more convenient than it is today, and yet many of us struggle with keeping our head above water. Sometimes we’re even paralyzed by our daily to-do lists. Why is that?

I think there are many reasons for this:

  • too much choice can cause paralysis (as outlined in The Paradox of Choice by Barry Schwartz)
  • endless access to information and entertainment, and comparing ourselves to others
  • working and raising children simultaneously
  • constant communication in the form of phone calls, emails, texts and social media alerts

Rarely does anyone feel bored anymore.

But there’s another thread to overwhelm that I hadn’t recognized until I became a Nutritionist.

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Sign up now for the 2017 West Coast Cleanse!

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Hey everyone! I’m so excited (once again) to be unveiling a project that I’ve been super eager to launch. I’ve created another product to encourage living in harmony with the seasons. It is the 2017 West Coast Cleanse and it is designed for those of us living in and around Metro Vancouver.

January is coming up soon and is a very popular time to cleanse, given that we often overindulge over the holiday season, which leaves us feeling heavy, groggy and in the need of an extreme fix! But doing it incorrectly during the dead of winter can be harsh on our systems.

I have designed the 2017 West Coast Cleanse for people to gain the benefits of cleansing while also staying in harmony with the seasons!

Cleansing is an important practice for overall wellness. Our eliminatory organs (the liver, kidneys, lungs, skin and bowels) must get rid of environmental toxins as well as harmful chemicals produced internally as a byproduct of some metabolic processes.

I’d say that it’s now, more than ever before, important to take the time to cleanse the body. Here’s why:

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Mom knows best: 7 tried and true recipes for fussy eaters (that are gluten, soy, casein and sugar-free, too)

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I recently wrote a blog post on Vitalia’s website about the possible underlying causes of fussy eating and what can be done about it. It is thought that fussy eating can be the result of nutritional deficiencies. One mom I know (actually, she’s my sister!) has fully embraced this theory and has been adding nutrients (while reducing common allergens and irritants) to her five-year-old son’s diet over the past six months. She has experimented with many different recipes and has now found several that her children absolutely love!

Here are the recipes that my sis swears by for fussy kids that are also gluten-free, soy-free, casein-free and refined sugar-free – or have the option to be! Hopefully this will save you some trial and error in the kitchen…

(And yes, in case you’re wondering, my nephew is not much of a fussy eater anymore! In fact, he lights up when presented with a delicious but healthful smoothie from Buddha-Full. So amazing!)

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Easy weekday dinner: Coconut Chickpea Curry

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At this time of the year when it’s already dark when you get home from work, my husband and I don’t always feel like cooking. So we welcome easy, healthful and hearty meals that can be made in big batches and last for a few days!

This is one of our favourites.

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My latest creation! An every day reminder to live in harmony with the seasons

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I recently went shopping for a day planner in hopes of finding something a little more robust than what I currently have, and when I couldn’t find one that had everything I was looking for I decided to make my own! I basically combined my passions for design, eating well and the four seasons into this piece, and am so pleased and excited about how it turned out. So I added a few more features and am now selling it, too!

The theme of it is In Season and celebrates the foods that are in season (like the calendar I designed last year) and offers suggestions on when to grow what, how to enjoy each month and lists the farmers markets in Metro Vancouver, plus more…

While I designed it for myself, I think any local food lover, grower, farmers market shopper, stationary enthusiast – and anyone who wishes to live in harmony with the seasons – would enjoy it as well.

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Where to find Winter Farmers Markets in and around Vancouver

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It’s that time of the year when farmers market shoppers stock up on as much fresh, local produce as they can and start saying goodbye to their favourite vendors as they pack up for Winter.

But it’s not all bad news. Winter farmers markets are popping up – and sticking around – more and more! They usually run until the following Spring, when the Summer markets tend to kick off again.

Here’s a list of Winter Farmers Markets in and around Vancouver:

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How to make congee – my favourite grounding food

tashelstine-com-how-to-make-congeeOne of the best things I learned in my year of nutrition school was how to make congee. Seriously. I’m kind of obsessed with it. This incredibly easy and warming food has brought me such comfort that I had to share it with you here…

Congee is a rice porridge that originated in China thousands of years ago. It is cooked over long hours and often enjoyed at breakfast. I eat it for breakfast, lunch or dinner.

It is made up of rice, one onion and lots of water, and you can throw in whatever else you want to flavour it! I add fresh ginger, unrefined salt and a generous pinch of saffron. I’ll also throw in some jumbo prawns on the odd occasion, and sometimes drizzle it with sesame oil and green onions, once in a while I also add tamari. My favourite time to make congee is super early on a rainy stay-at-home weekend morning, where I can enjoy its aroma as it cooks for hours.

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