Almighty Antioxidants

Top 5 Antioxidants

Most people associate cold and flu season with the holidays. What they seem to forget is that cold and flu season actually extends well beyond Christmas and the New Year. Seasonal flu outbreaks can occur as early as October and last well into May. One of the easiest ways to protect yourself is to keep your immune system healthy with a diet rich in antioxidants.

Antioxidants are free radical scavengers which means they neutralize the molecules that lead to cellular damage. Cellular damage can lead to inflammation which compromises the ability of our immune system. Most antioxidants are naturally occurring and are found in fresh fruits and vegetables. One way to figure out the amount of antioxidants in the foods you’re eating is to look at its ORAC rating. ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) units are a means to measure antioxidants, developed by the National Institute on Aging in the National Institutes of Health (NIH). You can find a complete list of foods here or here.

5 Ways to Boost Your Daily Antioxidant Intake:

1. Fresh Citrus: ORAC 2,103

Living in Florida means access to lots and lots of fresh citrus. Oranges are full of vitamin C, a natural antioxidant, they also contain phytonutrients and anthocyanins. Anthocyanins are the compounds that give blood oranges their rich red color and berries their blue and purple hues. All of these compounds combine to make oranges a great source for antioxidants.

2. Cherries: ORAC 3,747

Fresh sweet cherries are another fruit rich in anthocyanins. The darker the cherry, the more antioxidants it contains. According to Dr. Michael T. Murray, researchers at Michigan State University found that anthocyanins from cherries are able to block both COX-1 and COX-2 enzymes, which contribute to inflammatory processes.


3. Ground Turmeric: ORAC 127,068

Turmeric is the most wonderfully orange spice that contains powerful antioxidants known as curcuminoids. It’s long been used in Ayurvedic medicine and traditional Indian cooking. In recent years, it’s gained popularity and turmeric supplements have popped up everywhere. I recommend cooking with turmeric or adding it to a smoothie. To make sure you’re absorbing it, pair it with a fat like coconut oil. For complex cases, supplementation can be helpful. For day to day health, consider adding it to at least one meal per day.


4. Powdered Greens: ORAC 40,000+ [Read more...]

Super Bowl Snacks

Monday Night Football

The Super Bowl is right around the corner and while I would normally be gearing up for a gathering of friends and family, this year I’m opting to watch the game quietly at home with my husband.

We’ve come to the realization that we’re a little burned out from busy weekends. It seems like life hasn’t slowed down since before the holidays. I’m looking forward to cheering on the Seahawks with some delicious snacks and my favorite beer.

Despite not hosting anyone, there are two times during the year when a televised event requires an abundance of good food: The Super Bowl and The Oscars. Growing up, these were the nights I enjoyed parked in front of the TV with my family. There’s something super memorable about eating in the living room when you know you’re not usually allowed to (thanks for bending the rules, Mom!).

Here’s a round up of some delicious vegetarian recipes for your Super Bowl Sunday.

Chipotle Sweet Potato Nachos by Naturally Ella:

Chipotle Sweet Potato Nachos

Jalapeno Quinoa and Corn Dip from Pinch of Yum:

Corn Dip

Veggie Potstickers with Sweet Chili Dip from The First Mess:

[Read more...]

Flooring Update

Flooring FInale

We finished our floors!

We finished our floors and then I worked a nearly 60 hour work week. Suffice it to say I feel dead to the world. I had Sunday off, but it went by too quickly.

Happy Birthday!

Oh, and I celebrated my birthday in the midst of my crazy week. By celebrate, I mean I worked all day and then had dinner with my husband and parents. To make my day a little bit more exciting, my husband packed me a bag full of gifts, one to be opened every 2 hours. It was the coolest thing ever! I got lots of little treats throughout the day – all of my favorite things from Starbucks to Chapstick. The man knows me pretty darn well. My coworkers also surprised me with treats at work: a fox mug, a tiara, fun sunglasses, a big birthday button and of course, CAKE!


If I had to work on my birthday, I was happy to be spending it with my coworkers. They’re an amazing group of people. The next celebration is this weekend. My girlfriends and I are going out to brunch. I’m looking forward to so much needed girltalk and mimosas.


Next on my list of things to do is to get back to blogging regularly. I used to do this thing where I actually planned out my posts in advance and lately I’ve been super slacking on that. I think most of it has to do with time management. I’ve been so busy with work and life and family and dogs. You get it.  [Read more...]

Tidying Up

Anyone who has ever taken on a home improvement project can tell you it’s not for the faint of heart. My house has been in a constant state of disorganization since we started our project last week. I can’t wait to get my life back, which includes spending my weekends at Costco.

This weekend, we’re painting the master bedroom, finishing the floor install and fingers crossed, returning all our things to their respective homes.

Installing the flooring in our master bedroom meant emptying out my closet. Before Christmas I cleared out 2 large garbage bags worth of clothing and accessories for Goodwill but I know there is much more where that came from. I’m going to use our flooring adventure as an opportunity to eliminate the rest of these “things” that I no longer need.

Life Changing Magic of Tidying UP

I recently picked up The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing and I’m really excited to start implementing the tactics discussed. When I moved to Orlando from Seattle, I purged a lot. Living in a house has helped me realize that there is a lot more to let go of. Clutter isn’t healthy and I really want to focus on having a clutter free, tidy home. [Read more...]

The Greatest Test

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset…of Marriage is a DIY home project.

If you’ve never tried it. I dare you to.

As I mentioned on Friday, Matt and I decided to DIY bamboo flooring in our bedrooms. Our house came with laminate wood flooring in the common areas and carpet in the bedrooms. Pets + Carpet is a bad combination. The carpet had to go. I also mentioned my addiction/obsession with HGTV so naturally I thought DIY flooring would be easy.

I was wrong.

First, you really just have to do it. There are SO many opinions on how to lay flooring. As long as you maintain space for the floor to expand and use good judgment with laying your joints, you should be fine. So after a half a day of arguing about the “right way” to lay the floor we just started doing it. And it worked!

With hit a major low point when we got to the closets. Luckily, my dad happened to stop by at that very moment and he came up with a plan, helped us cut the wood and stuck around for another 8 hours to help us almost complete bedroom #2. The lesson here is that even when you’re 30, your parents can still save the day.

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset [Read more...]