I'm back!

Hey everyone! I haven’t blogged in a MINUTE but I am feel all kinds of inspired recently and I realized that I miss writing. Especially with all that has been going on in my life over the past year, I want to start blogging again as a way to 1. to help me to get all of the thoughts and ideas in my head out of my head. Writing has always been really therapeutic for me. 2. Share my “wisdom” and experiences and also of course food and nutrition-related topics with all of you. I’ve been through and am about to go through even more milestones and I always love hearing other peoples’ experiences. So I hope whatever I share could hopefully help at least just one person.

So just to help set the stage and initiate the this new phase of Julia, let me get you all up to speed on what I’ve been up to:

  1. I got married!

IMG_9897.JPG
IMG_0017.JPG
IMG_0008.JPG
IMG_0011.JPG


The day was just so beautiful and went better than I could have imagined. It was certainly the best day of our lives. I always wondered how that could be true when I heard other people say that their wedding was the best day ever, but now I get it! All of my favorite people in place, in my favorite place, with my favorite person. Add an ice cream bar, no rain, and a successful ballroom dance we had been practicing for for months and I was on Cloud 9. It is also true though that the day goes by in the blink of an eye. I desperately wish I could have slowed down time for just that day, but alas it came and went. There was certainly a lot of time and stress that went into the planning but I really enjoyed the whole wedding planning process. It’s just sad that it’s over so quickly! But the ultimate reward is that I now have the most loving, patient, and kind husband to spend my days with! I hope to share some nuggets of wisdom I gleaned from the whole process here on the blog for all my engaged followers :)

2. I’m moving…

…to Michigan! Back in December of last year, Drew accepted a job offer in Michigan. It came down to two job positions- a consulting position based here in Boston but that would require Drew to travel up to 5 days per week and work long hours and a position with Ford that would not require much travel and would overall give us a better life and a better start to our marriage. So after many heart-to-hearts, we decided that Michigan was the best choice. Drew is from Michigan so luckily we will have family support out there. For those who don’t know, I’m a Massachusetts-born and -raised girl. Born here, went to college and got my Master’s at Boston University and Tufts University, respectively, and have spent most of my summers here on Cape Cod. While I do have a good amount of travel under my belt, I am very close with my family and have never “lived” anywhere else for an extended period of time. So this will certainly be an adventure for me. I am definitely sad to leave my hometown and all of the comforts it provides, but I am also excited for this new phase. I’ve realized that it’s important to me to live somewhere at least for a little while, just to help broaden my perspective. I’m also just comforted by the fact that I will be doing all of this with my husband and best friend. Plus Michigan is a pretty cool place- I’m looking forward to lots of “Go Blue!” and exploring a new state. I plan to definitely talk about this transition on here mor

 We had our engagement photos shot in Northern Michigan!

We had our engagement photos shot in Northern Michigan!

3. I’ve done a lot of travel

Back in June I left my job (more on that later) as we were starting the moving process. Drew was also graduating from MIT (with his dual Master’s degree in both Mechanical Engineering and Business. NBD.) and knew that he had some time to travel and wanted to take advantage of this period because I’ve learned, these gaps of freedom can be few and far between as we get older. So in June we went on a whirlwind trip to Spain. We went to Barcelona, San Sebastian, Seville, Granada, and Madrid and pretty much just ate and drank our way through the country. I had been to Spain a few times previously- I used to take Spanish in high school- but Drew had never been and it was pretty high up on his list. I did a great deal of research on where to eat in Spain as it can be easy to stumble into a tourist trap as I’ve learned through my travels. I plan to share my culinary guide to Spain for anyone considering traveling there so stay tuned for that!

IMG_5738.JPG
IMG_5739.JPG
IMG_5459.JPG

We also just returned from nearly two weeks in Greece from our honeymoon. I absolutely LOVED Greece and can’t recommend it enough as a place that needs to be on your travel bucket list. The food, the weather, the people, the VIEWS- just flawless. I am currently working on a three part series on our time in Greece because, like Spain, I did a lot of research to ensure we ate and slept well while in Greece. Our trip to Greece was much more chill and relaxing than Spain but that’s what we wanted going into it. It may just be my new favorite place (but as an Italophile, I don’t think I could take the crown from Italy). But I am already plotting our next trip the Greece :)

IMG_0636.JPG
IMG_0545.JPG
IMG_1013.JPG
IMG_0863.JPG

4. Yes, I’m still a registered dietitian

As I said, I left my official job as a registered dietitian back in June. It wasn’t an easy move because I actually loved the position I was in. I was working in an outpatient nutrition clinic and I was about to work one-on-one with patients with diabetes (type 1, type 2, and gestational), gastrointestinal issues (IBS, IBD, Celiac), eating disorders, heart disease, and counseled patients on weight management. I loved the setting and the amount of time I got to spend with patients. I had previously been working inpatient but didn’t find it as rewarding as outpatient. I’ve been on the lookout for outpatient positions in Michigan so fingers crossed on that. My other huge passion is taking on my own clients which I have found the ultimate reward and something that took the backseat over the past few months but that I am so excited to get back into. I will definitely be focusing on lots of nutrition and food posts. And if you are looking for some more in-depth nutrition counseling, reach out to me! I’m taking new clients!

5. Get ready for Julia the RD 2.0
I definitely want to expand my scope as an “influencer”- over the past few months I’ve become passionate about women’s health, clean beauty, and mental health. A healthy lifestyle goes wayyyy beyond what we put in our bellies. So in addition to food and nutrition, I want to share my other passions with all of you! I have lots of ideas up my sleeve. Cheers to new endeavors and adventures in this new season of my life. As always, thank you all for your support- whether you have been a follower since the beginning or message me questions on Instagram or I’ve designed a meal plan for you, I want to let you all know that you have touched my life in some positive way and you are the ones that encourage me to keep doing what I love (e.g. nerding out about smoothie bowls), especially when the comparison trap and negative thoughts get in the way. So thank you and much love <3

IMG_0697.JPG



Oatless Oats

Happy December!

It's that time of the year when I wake up craving something warm and comforting.  While oatmeal is my usual go-to, sometimes it just doesn't keep me satisfied long enough.  I have found that a breakfast high in protein tide me over the best (at least until my next snack).  Enter: oatless oats.  Eggs whites are used in place of oats.  Here is a recipe for a warm breakfast that is gluten-free and dairy-free.

In a medium saucepan, combine:

  • 3/4 cup egg whites
  • 1 tablespoon ground flax seed
  • 1 banana, mashed
  • 1/2 cup almond milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Cook over low heat until the mixture starts to thicken, about 5 minutes.  Transfer to a bowl and top with nut butter, berries, and shredded coconut.  Enjoy!

 

Why Your Juice Cleanse Could Be Dangerous


Move over frozen yogurt, juice is the latest food sensation.  Juicing has swept the nutrition world.  It is no longer just a luxury afforded to those individuals with a juice extractor; juice shops are popping up all across the country.  And unlike the Cronut®, this fad is seemingly more healthful.  Given that our society has less and less time to roast carrots and sauté kale, juice is a convenient and healthful way to get a serving of fruits and vegetables.  Juice shops offer a rainbow of juices that include delicious combinations from beets, kale, and ginger to spinach, mint, and green apple.  However, like most nutrition fads, juicing has become extreme.  Enter: the juice cleanse.  Juice shops across the country are offering juice cleanses, ranging from a 1- to 10-day supply of freshly pressed juices.  Individuals drink 4 to 6 juices per day as a substitute for food.  While a juice cleanse may seem like a harmless experience that will leave you feeling rejuvenated, think again. 

A recent history of the juice cleanse

The concept of a cleanse is not novel.  The Master Cleanse, which gained momentum in the 1970s, is a diet that involves subsisting on a combination of lemon juice, maple syrup, cayenne pepper, and water, along with salt water and laxative tea, for a minimum of 10 days.2 Stanley Burroughs, author of "The Master Cleanser," promises weight loss and digestive rest so that the body can heal and thus become more adept at filtering out toxins. While the Master Cleanse may seem punishing, it surprisingly has a following.  Beyoncé attributed her 20-pound weight loss in 10 days in preparation for her role in the movie Dreamgirls to the cleanse.3Consequently, celebrity endorsements such as this have made the Master Cleanse synonymous with fast and effective weight loss.

Juice claims

     Juice cleanse programs promise benefits similar to the Master Cleanse.  “Raw Juce,” a Florida-based juice shop offers cleanses that range from the “Basic Cleanse” to the “Ultimate Cleanse,” for advanced juicers.  The concept behind a juice cleanse is a simplification of digestion, thanks to the lack of fiber in juice.  Slower digestion apparently allows the body to repair itself so that it can protect against toxins, resulting in renewed energy, glowing skin, and improved immune function.  However, the research is lacking.  Crash dieting in the form of juicing is appealing because it promises a quick and easy fix to help people lose weight.  Conversely, sustainable weight loss is best achieved through consistent exercise and healthful eating.

Consequences of the cleanse

     The purported benefits of a juice cleanse can be simultaneously negative.  First, juice lacks fiber that is naturally found in fruits and vegetables.  Fiber helps to prevent spikes in blood sugar in sweet foods, such as fruit.  Therefore, consistent juice cleanses are particularly dangerous for individuals with diabetes, and can result in fatigue, blurry vision, and excessive hunger.  Second, juice can be a substitute for a snack or an addition to breakfast or lunch, but is not sufficient as a meal replacement.  Juices are low in calories, fat, and protein- all critical sources of energy for the brain and body.  Furthermore, attempting to exercise during a cleanse could cause light-headedness, fainting, and improper recovery.  Third, without protein, muscle mass is lost.  And not solely muscle in your arms and legs, but also in your heart.  When the heart lacks sustenance, like during a juice cleanse or in an eating disorder, it becomes weak, which can lead to heart failure.8Finally, juice has also been shown to cause kidney damage given the increased absorption of oxalate associated with juicing.5While crash dieting once won’t give you long-term health effects, regular bouts of juice fasting certainly can.

     Freshly pressed juice is a delicious way to drink some fruits and vegetables, along with all of their vitamins, minerals, and micronutrients.  However, exclusively drinking juice for extended amounts of time can be detrimental to your health.  If you are looking to lose weight or to incorporate more wholesome foods into your diet, there are less extreme and more nourishing options than a 10-day juice cleanse, to help you achieve your goals.