January 2012

The Expert Series~ Julie Daniluk On Inflammation

Julie Daniluk Discusses Inflammation

It is said that inflammation is the root of many illness and disease; leading to minor issues like gingivitis or major concerns like heart disease, stroke and death. This is why Julie Daniluk’s crusade couldn’t be more perfectly timed.

You may know Julie as the resident nutritionist on The Healthy Gourmet, which airs on the OWN Network; but Julie is also a very acclaimed writer and owner of the Big Carrot Natural Food Market, one of the largest of its kind in Canada.

Recently Julie released a literary tome “Meal That Heal Inflammation” that serves as a textbook for those who desire to heal their bodies with the food they eat; the book offers practical information paired with down to earth recipes that are not only flavorful but healing as well. I bought the book and I was floored by the amount of information Julie managed to inject within the pages- it really is an amazing book!

I was so pleased when Julie took a few moments away from her Canadian book tour and television appearances to participate in the experts series; thank you Julie!

So to end the expert’s series, the lovely Julie Daniluk on Inflammation!


You are well known for your meals that heal; but if you could narrow it down to five essential items, what are the most important ingredients to have in a healthy kitchen?

1)    Kale: This form of cabbage is rated one of the highest nutrient-density food. With only 31 calories a cup, it is packed with nutrients.

2)    Arctic char: This fish resembles a salmon but is genetically more closely linked to a trout. It is a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids, a powerful anti-inflammatory.

3)    Berries: Eating berries daily can significantly reduce inflammation, according to a 2007 study in Journal of Nutrition. Blueberries, one of my all-time favourites, are low on the glycemic index, which means it does not spike your blood sugar. They are also high in fiber, packed with antioxidants and also reduce cortisol, a stress hormone.

4)    Maca Powder: This nutrient dense root vegetable is used to increase vitality and stamina, regulate glandular function and promote hormone balance in men and women. I love using it in smoothies. For more information you can check out this link,

5)    Hemp Seeds: Also known has hemp hearts, these seeds are a powerhouse of protein, EFA, GLA and iron. I put hemp on salads, in smoothies and include them in many other recipes on my website For more information you can check out this link,


In your opinion what is the most important thing to remember when trying to heal ourselves and why?

Be loving and patient with yourself. Give healing time. It often takes years to develop a health problem, so it is reasonable to say it will take time to reverse it. I ask people to commit to the MTHI plan for at least 8 weeks but many will start to feel the results before that time.

In my book Meals That Heal Inflammation, I tell the readers that Chapter 2 “Emotional Pain: Let’s Talk” is the most important chapter in the book. I really mean this!

It is vital to engage in positive self-talk and drop the negative. Negative self-talk such as “I’ll never lose weight” or “I’ll always be in pain”, become a tape loop in your mind that will not help you reach your goals. Reword these messages and rewrite the story line to include your goals.

Many people, who are struggling with weight and pain issues, are also struggling with emotional difficulties. Mental health is key to physical health and having someone such as a therapist to guide you through this journey can help you make lasting changes.


What is one thing that you do every day that contributes to your health?

I practice Yoga every morning. This includes stretching (asanas), chanting and deep breathing (pranayama). These practices keep me grounded and centered for the day’s activities.

I also have dinner for breakfast, meaning I start each day with a good quality protein meal to keep my blood sugar balanced for the day.


Organically yours,

Julie Daniluk

For more great recipes and tips, check out

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The Experts Series~ Joy McCarthy On Holistic Health

Holistic health with superfoods

As a natural foods chef, nutrition is so important to my everyday life- from my career to my health; which is why I was instantly drawn to Toronto based nutritionist Joy McCarthy. Joy is an expert in holistic health including Super Foods and natural beauty. Through her workshops she empowers people to harness the goodness of food for health and vitality- it’s not called Eat Well, Feel Well for nothing! Her down to earth delivery of nutritional information makes it easy to digest and implement for those starting their journey to health.

If you’re in the Toronto area, be sure to register for her newest workshop is Super Foods For Beauty or her 6 week Eat Well, Feel Well course at the lovely Ritz Carlton! And if you aren’t in Toronto, Joy also offers nutrition coaching via Skype!

I genuine look up to people like Joy; she has improved her health holistically and enthusiastically teaches people to do the same for themselves. She is a champion for holistic health; and I am honored to have her as a part of this series.


Vitality Guide For Women: What’s your favorite super food, and how would you prepare it?

Joy McCarthy: I have so many it’s so hard to choose! A food that I eat on an everyday basis that keeps me energized and stimulates my liver’s detoxifying properties, plus tastes delicious is leafy greens. Kale and arugula being my absolute favorite! I eat them raw and cooked. My fave way to cook kale is to lightly sautee it in organic butter or coconut oil, sprinkle some sea salt and pepper and eat it as a side dish. As for arugula, I love making pestos by tossing in a handful of arugula with some walnuts, garlic, sea salt and extra virgin olive oil or hemp oil into my food processor and putting it on top of brown rice pasta – deeeeelicious!

Vitality Guide For Women: You are an advocate for natural beauty products; if my readers could replace only one item in their beauty cabinet which one do you think is the most important; and why?

Joy McCarthy: Body Moisturizer! Many products are chock-full of chemicals and preservatives that can be hormone disrupting, immune-lowering and even promote the growth of cancer. It is extremely important to do your research on your beauty products because what you put ON you, get’s IN you. Your skin is your largest organ, so make sure what you slather on yourself is clean. I love organic coconut oil for a moisturizer or Dessert Essence brand of moisturizers. 

Vitality Guide For Women: What one thing do you do every day that contributes to your health?

Joy McCarthy: I drink lemon and water every single morning on an empty stomach. Not only is it incredible refreshing, but it is detoxifying and excellent for stimulating good digestion. Many people notice their skin improves in just a couple of weeks of drinking lemon and water every morning. Oh and if I could pick one other thing that contributes to my health, it’s giving and receiving a nice warm hug!

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The Experts Series~ Sarah Wilson On Quitting Sugar

I quit sugar

If you follow me on Twitter, then you know very well that I quit sugar this year- for good. It was something I had been thinking about for months; and what finally made me take the leap was reading the ebook by Sarah Wilson called “I Quit Sugar”, which lead me to the book “Sweet Poison” by David Gillespie. Both books changed the way I felt about what I put into my body.

So when I decided to create the Experts Series, I knew it wouldn’t be complete without Sarah; she is a walking example of what it means to be sugar free and she shares her wisdom on her website and through her newsletter- both information and inspiration rich, for those who seek to kick the white stuff for good.

So without further ado, Ms. Sarah Wilson!


Vitality Guide For Women: You’re currently pioneering the “I Quit Sugar” movement; what was the most challenging part of quitting sugar for you?

Sarah Wilson: Oh definitely dealing with the 3pm tug. I have an autoimmune disease which means my blood sugars are a bit messy – as are a lot of people living Western lives. It took quite some time to “tame” my system to resist the need for an instant insulin spike in the afternoon when I was feeling flat and tired and sad. It was like dealing with any other addiction – I had to push through until my body became used to more sustained energy releases.

Vitality Guide For Women: How long have you been sugar free?

Sarah Wilson: Exactly a year!

Vitality Guide For Women: If you could give those quitting sugar a nugget of wisdom, what would it be?

Sarah Wilson:  To make fat your friend. A hard part of the withdrawal process is letting go of “treats”. My argument is that we don’t have to fight that part of the process – simply switch to (good) fat and protein-based treats, like cheese and coconut cream and homemade nut balls made with butter and coconut oil. I write about this a lot – it’s a complete misnomer that fat makes you fat. We are designed to eat fat. We process it. We get full from it. Fat cures cravings…AND it makes you lose weight. I know, I know…hard to believe, but thousands of people who’ve followed my program can attest to it. 

Vitality Guide For Women: What’s one thing that you do every day that contributes to your health?

Sarah Wilson: I meditate. Actually, I do it twice a day. I practice the vedic style – 20 minutes in the morning and afternoon. 


To keep up with my “I Quit Sugar” journey; and for my tried and tested tips, follow me on Facebook!

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The Expert Series~ Candice Schreiber On Veganism

When I started down my path to health and wellness, I found myself faced with many questions; and I wished that I had an expert to field my, many, questions. When I thought back on this time I was lead to create The Experts Series; an interview series with expert in various fields of holistic health and nutrition.

First up, Candice Schreiber from The Healthy Herbivore blog; she is a plant based nutrition consultant, opinionated writer, product reviewer and in my opinion, an amazing resource on the subject of veganism. Candice graciously participated in the series; and I know that many, including myself, will get a whole lot out of her answers!


Vitality Guide: You are an advocate for the vegan lifestyle, what are your tips for those looking to ease into a vegetarian or vegan lifestyle?

Candice Schreiber: A vegan lifestyle encompasses quite a bit of change so let’s look at each aspect. For food I will say, in my Utopia, no one eats animal based foods but I realize this can be a huge and intimidating leap for most people! Even I myself did not drop all animal based foods right away. So my tip for those looking to ease into it is to start with baby steps. Start phasing things out by swapping animal based for plant based. Instead of dairy milk try almond milk. Go meatless one to three days per week. Start using ground chia instead of eggs for baking. Experiment with vegetarian and vegan recipes. Slow and steady wins the race!

In addition to obvious part of changing your diet, veganism also advocates animal welfare. What this means is ensuring that the clothes that you wear or the makeup that you use does not contain animal products, was not tested on animals, etc. Again making a large leap can seem like a daunting task so phasing out is an option. For instance, when my Maybelline mascara ran out instead of buying the same brand I did my research and bought cruelty free mascara.

Making a lifestyle change is big but it doesn’t have to be overwhelming. I say go one step at time, do your research, and become an informed consumer.

Vitality Guide: There are many people that say veganism contributes to a lack in protein; what foods do you consider staples in your kitchen that ensure you are getting enough protein into your daily diet?

Candice Schreiber: There are many sources of protein in the vegan diet! In fact virtually all foods contain protein we are just conditioned to think quality sources of protein are animal based foods. Having said that here are staples I keep in my kitchen that are sources of complete protein (containing all essential amino acids):

Vitality Guide: How long have you been a vegan; and what changes have you noticed within your body?

Candice Schreiber: I’ve been vegan for 9 months. What I’ve noticed is that over the last nine months I sleep better, I don’t have breakouts, I am less bloated, I have energy all day, and I never feel weighed down. The one really big thing I’ve noticed is my hair and nails grow like crazy!

Vitality Guide: What is one thing that you do every day that contributes to your health?

Candice Schreiber: Aside from filling my body with delicious and nutritious foods, I meditate and do yoga. The mind and body are intimately connected. For overall optimal health I think it’s important to take care of your mind as well as your body!

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Eat Your Way To Sexual Vitality

Foods for sexual vitality and wellness

Ask anyone and they’ll say they want to be sexy, or hot; but did you know that you can eat your way to a sexier self. Yes it’s true there are foods that tantalize not only your taste buds but other body parts too-and these foods have science and research to back them up!

To get more nookie into your life try some of these super foods: