What I Learned From My Month of Banishing Back Pain Through Standing and Strengthening

The Best Natural Back Pain Tips and Cures | 5 Things You Can Do to Improve Your Posture and Alignment For my May wellness experiments, I tried to tackle my long, torrid relationship with my spine by strengthening my core and not sitting for more than 45 minutes at a time.

I’ve been pretty injury prone for most of my life, including a rather impressive month in high school when I tore ligaments in both ankles and then broke three toes in my sleep (thanks to a very realistic dream about soccer). Still, I thought I would at least be the proud owner of a midlife crisis convertible before my back decided to go out on me.

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Gluten-Free is Me: Healthy Chicken Parmesan with Fresh Cherry Tomato Sauce

Gluten-Free Baked Healthy Chicken Parmesan Recipe with Fresh Cherry Tomato Sauce, Basil, Buffalo Mozzarella, and Ground Almond Crust | Easy
Happy Monday everyone!

I’m sitting here bleary eyed after having gotten off a plane at 2am last night. JFK air traffic control and I are no longer friends. I had to revisit one of the amazing talks from this weekend on forgiveness as we circled the airport for 2 hours.

I spent the last few days in Arizona soaking up wisdom from all sides of the wellness world. Mind Body Green has been an amazing partner for me since launching The Wellness Project, and I felt so honored to attend their Revitalize summit at Miraval Resort. Between the organic margaritas, morning meditations and bulletproof coffee on tap, the weekend was pretty much healthy hedonism incarnate.
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Meatless Monday: Baked Quinoa Cakes with Broccoli and Sweet Potatoes

Baked Quinoa Cakes Recipe with Broccoli and Sweet Potatoes | Quick Easy Meals | Gluten-Free, Healthy Snacks | Make-Ahead I churned this quinoa cakes recipe out of my kitchen on the eve of my departure for Kenya. My bag had yet to be packed, my hair was in a towel, and my apartment looked like tornado alley in June. But somehow in between digging through drawers for safari pants and searching desperately for my yellow fever card, I decided it would be a good idea to clean out my fridge the hard way. By baking something.

Charlie and I have taken some pretty big and epic trips this past year. Our shared travel bug has certainly tested the fortitude of our relationship in the face of long plane rides and inhospitable Cambodian customs agents, and also that of our intestines in the face of even less hospitable foreign pathogens.
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Your Late Spring Farmer’s Market Challenge Menu From Domesticate-Me

Farmer's Market Menu | Late Spring | Domesticate Me | Serena Wolf Recipes One of my favorite experiments that I’ve done so far for The Wellness Project has been the $40 Farmer’s Market Challenge. The mission of this “mini sprint” was to help me make healthy home cooking with higher quality ingredients more affordable, and to make it a weekly ritual.

It probably comes as no surprise why spending a weekend afternoon massaging kale might be more fun for me than, say, going 30 days without drinking. But until I forced myself to dedicate this time to making healthy meals for the week, cooking for myself was a lot more haphazard. And my monthly Seamless Web bill was a lot more impressive/horrifying. Continue reading

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Gluten-Free Is Me: Spicy Shrimp Pasta Salad with Asparagus and Sundried Tomatoes

Easy Spicy Shrimp Pasta Salad Recipe with Asparagus, Cherry and Sundried Tomatoes | Gluten-Free Pasta Salad | Healthy Italian Seafood Cold pasta salad tends to be the saddest and least exciting summer picnic side. For one thing, it’s usually one of the few dishes that doesn’t involve mayo. And if it does, well then, it just might be one of the only dishes in my book that shouldn’t.

Regardless of this dismal red gingham pasta landscape, when I was growing up, my mom made a bomb cold pasta salad that used fresh tomatoes and basil, and just a little balsamic. It tasted bright and egregiously garlicky—a far cry from the usual deli aisle limp, tart fusilli with kidney beans and mysterious chopped meats.
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May Wellness Challenge: Back Health

The Best Natural Back Pain Tips and Cures | 5 Things You Can Do to Improve Your Posture and Alignment There are many aspects of my autoimmune disease that have made me feel like 29 going on 90. But more so than the inability to function on less than 9 hours of sleep, having to carry several pill boxes in my purse, and getting winded climbing a simple flight of stairs, the thing that’s made me feel the most terrifyingly old was the first time I threw out my back.

I wasn’t carrying groceries or lifting a heavy skillet—two daily activities I often blame for my chronic back pain. I was simply putting on my pants. And a little piece of advice: if you ever throw out your back, hope that you do it when you’re not partially naked. Continue reading

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The Balanced Diet: Moroccan Chicken Tagine with Carrots, Chickpeas, and Kale

Easy Moroccan Chicken Tagine Recipe with Kale, Chickpeas and Carrots | Healthy, Slow Cooker, Gluten-Free The first version I ever made of this Moroccan chicken tagine was for a stew cook-off. During my first year out of college, back when every dinner was an excuse to pack 20 people into my 4th floor walk-up, my friend Keith and I started going head to head with our culinary skills, forcing our friends to eat their dinner out of two plastic bowls, and then to choose sides. Much to my surprise and delight, this sweet and spicy chicken stew  trounced Keith’s classic Beef Bourguignon.

My ego has clearly yet to recover 7 years later.
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What I Learned From My Month of Banning the Beverage Aisle and Binging on Water

The Wellness Project | How to Hydrate Better | Water Tips | The Best Water Filters | How Your Body Absorbs Water | How Much Water to Drink a Day This month for The Wellness Project series I challenged myself to drink better, cleaner water and more of it.

As part of the preparation (and also as an extension of my book research), I did a crazy amount of reading on the subject of hydration and our bodies. And sadly, there is no drier subject matter in the world than water. Continue reading

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