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By Angela of Eat Spin Run Repeat

Bring the farmer’s market to your table!

If visiting a local farmer’s market isn’t already something you do each week, I highly suggest putting it on your summer bucket list. Not only is it good to support local businesses, but eating food grown close to home is better for the environment. It also tastes a lot better than food that has spent hours in transit on the back of a truck! Here in south western Ontario, we’re blessed to have a large number of farmers who grow everything from corn and green beans to peaches and berries. Exploring these markets is one of my favourite Saturday activities, and I often come home with a basket full of produce that covers every colour in the rainbow.

Farmers-Market-Produce

For an easy to make, totally satisfying meal, I like to throw together as much colourful produce as possible in one enormous salad, just like the one below. They don’t make them like this in restaurants, friends! Feel free to mix up the ingredients with whatever’s being sold at your local market.

Farmer's Market Chopped Salad - Eat Spin Run Repeat 1

Farmer’s Market Chopped Salad

Prep Time: 20 mins
Cook Time: 16 mins
Makes: 2 meal-sized servings

Ingredients

  • 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts, about 130g raw weight
  • salt-free seasoning mix
  • 4 cups mixed greens (radicchio, spinach, kale, romaine, etc)
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 4 radishes, grated or sliced
  • 1/2 cup shredded carrot
  • 1/2 cup chopped bell peppers
  • 1/2 cup chopped cucumber
  • 2 hard boiled eggs, sliced
  • 1/2 cob corn, either cooked or raw, sliced off the cob.
  • 2 tbsp unsalted sunflower seeds

Apple Cider Vinaigrette:

  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp honey or maple syrup

Instructions:

  • Preheat the barbeque to medium-high.
  • Whisk together all ingredients for dressing in a small bowl.
  • If the chicken breasts are much thicker in the middle than the outsides, pound them to even thickness with a meat mallet.
  • Using a basting brush, brush the chicken with a bit of apple cider vinaigrette, and set the rest aside. Sprinkle chicken with seasoning of choice. I like to use Kirkland Organic No-Salt Seasoning from Costco, but Mrs. Dash is another good salt-free option.
  • Grill the chicken breasts for about 8 minutes per side, or until no longer pink in the middle.
  • While the chicken cooks, prep the veggies. Slice or shred as indicated above. Cut eggs into even slices.
  • In a large bowl, toss the mixed greens with half of the dressing. Arrange 2 cups of greens in each salad bowl.
  • ‘Line up’ the veggies on top of the greens, and place the sliced eggs at the side. Sprinkle with sunflower seeds.
  • When chicken is cooked, let it rest 2-3 minutes before slicing into strips. Use them to top the salads.
  • Drizzle remaining dressing over top and serve.

Angela is an avid runner, fitness instructor, foodie, healthy living blogger, and owner of her business, Spin 360 Health Coaching. Having been overweight, unhappy and insecure as a teenager, Angela took control, changed her unhealthy habits, and adopted a clean eating lifestyle that she continues to maintain today. Her goal is to support, inspire, and motivate others to improve their health and be their best. You can learn more about her on her blog, Eat-Spin-Run-Repeat.com.

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This post was written by our Blogger Ambassador, Kate Hiipakka of The Four Percent. Enjoy!

You can work out all you want, but if you’re eating sh*t, you won’t get anywhere. There is a fitness adage that states, “Abs are made in the kitchen”, and a (unofficial) ratio that claims weight loss is 80% nutrition and 20% exercise. It may seem extreme, but it’s true. Nutrition has to be aligned if you want to see results in your body. This is coming from a girl who could eat French fries and ice cream with every meal, so believe me, I feel your pain.

Eating clean is more than just incorporating more fruits and vegetables into your daily meals. A lot of thought and preparation is required so it’s important to make your meal plan as efficient and effective as possible. Personally, I am not vegan or vegetarian, I don’t follow a specific diet and I do not have any dietary restrictions or allergies.  I structure my meals to be consumed every 2-3 hours – each including a protein source in combination with fruits or vegetables, carbohydrates, and healthy fats. I’ll add some fine print right here – I am not a nutritionist, but I’ve play around with A LOT of nutritional components and have done a lot of research. I’ve found the below outline to be really effective.

Breakfast: protein + fruit (or veg)
Snack: protein + fruit + healthy fat
Lunch: protein + vegetable + carbohydrate
Snack: protein + fruit
Dinner: protein + vegetable + carbohydrate

Good-Food-Fridge-Healthy-Eating

Check out this very BASIC breakdown for more deets:

Protein

This can be anything from beans, fish, poultry or lean beef. A major benefit of any protein source is that it keeps you full and provides vital nutrients to build muscle and keep your metabolism charged. Protein is essential for muscles to gain mass (read: “tone”) and recover after hard workouts. Load up!

high-protein-diet
Carbohydrates:

I’m talking about starches, fruits, whole grains, or vegetables. Basically, carbs provide the energy that fuels muscle growth. After consumption carbohydrates breakdown into smaller parts that get absorbed by our bods and are used as energy.

fruits-and-vegetables

Healthy fats:

Think oils, avocados, nuts or seeds. Healthy fats benefit our bodies, but should be consumed in moderation, so go easy, a table spoon of olive oil or almond butter, half an avocado, or a handful of almonds does the trick. These babies will help aid heart health, keep arteries flexible and support overall health.

healthy-fats
Regardless of eating habits the golden rule should be: eat when you’re hungry, and stay hydrated.

Please note: the above are all whole food sources, the less crap from a box labeled “low fat” or “fat free” you put into your body the better. True story.

It’s often said that “we are what we eat” and with countless studies to substantiate these claims, we are now more than ever, aware of all the consequences to our daily diet. We’re breaking down for you the most potent food culprits that leave pure skin anything but glowing. There are easy ways substitute these foods with healthier skin-friendly alternatives, as featured below.

Alcohol: All in moderation and if possible try to stick to red wine. Alcohol contains a ton of sugar which can cause glycation (the breakdown of the proteins in skin (collagen and elastin), ultimately causing skin to sag and age. Glucose also causes cells to be malformed and irregular thus creating free radicals.

Substitution: Drink 1 – 2 X per week!

– White Sugar: Leading the cause glycation breakdown, this is a big one to stay clear of. Try adding non-processed sugars or fruits into your diet.

Substitution: Cinnamon can also be substituted and it helps with inflammation! Honey and/or Cacao are great alternatives to actual sugar and they are both super foods.

– White bread: Contain extremely high glycemic levels. Foods that have a high glycemic level raise blood sugar and can cause inflammation. This can cause a puffy look to the skin and face.

Substitution: Look for breads listed as low glycemic. Our favorite is Ezekiel bread!

Fried foods: Fried foods also have high glycemic levels and can be full of preservatives which can cause bloating.

Substitution: If you are cooking with oil, try and use olive oil or coconut.

Soda: Whether it is the sugar or the artificial sweetener, stay away from drinking soda. Soda causes bloating and can dehydrate the skin.

Substitution: Kombucha or Sparkling Water

Preservatives:  can cause inflammation. Inflammation inside the body is a very bad thing and looks pretty bad our your skin too. Preservatives are in many foods. Stay clear of deli meats, pre-packaged snack foods and try cooking from scratch instead of reaching for the chines food.

Substitution: When cooking at home use natural ingredients buying processed food. Use ingredients to season food like garlic, tumeric and ginger. All three are extremely healthy and aid with inflammation.

Meat: All meat if not organic will contain hormones that the animal has been fed. Hormones can need to eat organic in order to not ingest hormones the animal has been fed.

Substitution: Aim for fish instead. Salmon, arguably the most healthy food, is the best because of omegas.

Dairy: Does nothing but cause inflammation.

Substitution: There are so many dairy alternatives including almond and coconut derived non-dairy products. For a complete listing see here: Non-Dairy.

Our “IT” List: Water, oily fish such as salmon and sardines, avocado, berries, citrus fruit, nuts, seeds, green vegetables, red wine in moderation, green tea, rooibos tea, garlic, ginger, cinnamon, turmeric, and plain yogurt.