Category Archives: Food

Hitting The Midway Mark in No Sugar November!

Honestly? It’s been way easier than I expected. For me, at least.

My husband has had some twitchy moments.

He estimates his diet is usually made up of about 30% sugar, so he’s been feeling pretty hungry and cranky much of the time. He also just made the transition from working in a kitchen with access to snacks all the time, to packing a lunch. Without the ease of his go-to sandwich (there’s sugar in bread), finding things to pack has been a challenge.

I’ve actually been surprised  with my experience. It’s actually been quite easy!  Turns out, I really don’t eat a lot of sugar normally anyway!  I’ve cut out the few processed foods that were still in my diet, like the odd piece of gluten free bread, and I haven’t had my normal amount of chocolate, but other than that little has changed.

I have made 4 batches of my secret weapon though, the things that are keeping Jeremy sane (along with Zevia pop).

Coconut Manna Cookies!

Nutiva Coconut Manna is basically the nectar of the gods. It’s creamed coconut in a jar.


The cookies I make are a variation on a recipe on the back of the jar:

1 part manna

1 part coconut oil (I use Nutiva as well)

1 part shredded coconut

1 part hemp seeds

Just mix together and drop onto some parchment or wax paper covered baking sheets.

Top with dried goji berries, almonds or raw cacao nibs (or whatever you like, those are just my fav).

The actual recipe calls for 1 part raw honey, but I’ve always omitted that one. They have a delectable sweetness as is.

They’re also hella-filling and full of amazing fiber, protein and loads of good fats. They’re amazing even for breakfast and keep you full for ages. They aren’t low calorie by any stretch, but they’re nutrition powerhouses, so I don’t really worry about it!

I’m going to need to make another batch tomorrow before work. The only issue with these cookies is that they really don’t last long in our household! I’m sure I’ll be making a few more before the end of this sugar free month.

Adventures With Superfoods!!!


On my way back from Astral Harvest Music Festival I wound up eating nothing but chocolate for lunch. A lot of chocolate, like… 3 bars of chocolate. It was my consolation prize after  waiting an hour for my  meal at the Boston Pizza in Slave Lake, and then sending it back because it was so nasty. It was supposed to be a simple burger, hold the bun, with a side salad. Nothing complicated, but for some reason said burger tasted like a microwaved breakfast sausage patty.  As I didn’t have time to replace the meal, I thought we’d just stop at 7-11 to grab something on the way, leading me to a big Cadbury’s Milk Chocolate bar (the other 2 came later on the drive).

As you can imagine, I didn’t feel that proud of my chocolate for dinner choice after the fact, but my body handled it like a champ. As a thank you for not rebelling against the sugar and dairy, I decided to treat it to a week of superfoods!  Although it’s been awhile since I’ve challenged myself in the nutrition department, my daily choices have been consistently healthier than they were at the start of the project. I’ve been making green smoothies, eating 95% whole foods and feeling pretty good about it, but there’s always room to kick it up a notch!

used under creative commons license
used under creative commons license

For the challenge, I decided to see if I could go a whole week only eating “superfoods”. My definition of superfood is basically just any food that is nutrient dense. The more vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals, the better!
Over the course of the week, I’ve discovered that I already eat tons of amazing superfoods. I usually just also added in some junk so really my strategy was just to replace that 5-10% of my diet that was sub optimal with something SUPER!

I’ve been eating crap tons of things like walnuts, almonds, berries, veggies of all kinds, spinach, wild salmon, avocado, coconut oil, hummus, etc. I have expanded the definition of superfood to include Bacon.

cookbookman17 cc by 2.0
cookbookman17 cc by 2.0


Why? Because it’s super too. It’s a soul food

I’m pretty sure it has magical powers and I’m not just saying that because it’s cool to fetishize bacon right now.

Speaking of magic superfoods, I’ve also found a new breakfast powerhouse of awesome that I should share with you as well!

Overnight Oats! These have changed my life. I’m so happy to dig in that I’ve been rushing through yoga in the morning just to shove these in my face! Here are a few more examples from Kathy Eats Real Food and The Oatmeal Artist.

My personal recipe so far has been:

1/3 cup of rolled oats

2/3 cup of nut milk (I’ve used soy, almond and coconut so far)

1/2 serving of Vega chocolate all in one nutrition powder

2 tsp coconut flakes

handful of chopped walnuts

1 Tbs raw cacao powder

Mix together in tupperware , and let sit covered overnight in fridge.

In the morning, if I’m feeling fancy I’ll occasionally add some chopped banana or blueberries, but I usually don’t bother.
This high protein superfood packed breakfast bomb is making me so happy! It’s great for the mornings when a green smoothie just isn’t enough!

So the moral of the story is: You never know where a chocolate binge might lead you so go ahead and have that second bar. Without it, superfood week wouldn’t exist and you might not know about life-changing overnight oats!



Culinary Gratitude

Food and I are on good terms nowadays.

These last few months of really listening to my body has (inevitably) lead me to healthier choices and I’ve stopped eating foods that disagree with me. It’s really nice to sit down to a meal without feeling conflicted about eating it, and it’s even nicer to not feel guilty after eating.  After years of fighting with my body and my conscience about food, it feels really good to feel good about what I’m putting inside me. I’ve always been a comfort and stress eater, and I’ve always loved food of all kinds, but not all of them loved me back (specifically wheat, dairy and refined sugar).

I’m not gonna lie. It  was hard to imagine giving up certain foods… I knew for years that my body wasn’t as OK with dairy as I pretended it was, but it didn’t make me feel as bad as wheat did, so I ignored that fact. I also didn’t want to live without ice cream but once I really started to pay attention to what foods made me feel good and nourished, it got easier. Once I cleaned up my eating, every time I chose to eat something my body didn’t like, I felt awful! I mean, physically just awful. My stomach protested and I felt gross. I won’t go into the details, but suffice to say, it was stinky.  Since I really hate feeling gross, the negative reinforcement has been super effective!

It’s taken 30 years, but I finally (for the most part) I pretty much only crave foods that make me feel good instead of terrible! I’m okay switching out dairy for coconut milk ice cream and sorbets, and to just go with goat cheese instead of cow’s milk cheeses. I’ve developed a taste for raw chocolate and fruit is sweet enough to satisfy me as dessert. I do need a certain amount of fat in a meal though, or I feel completely unsatisfied.

I’ve also started expressing my gratitude to my food. It’s come naturally as I’ve started to really appreciate how nourishing the right foods are to me, but I was inspired when I ate with a women in Bali who took a few seconds to bless her food before eating it. I know it’s a time honored tradition to bless food before eating it, but it’s one that I thought was kind of stupid when I was younger. Probably because it delayed the meal and I was usually eager to dive right in! I didn’t like to contemplate what I was about to eat and I’m sure part of that was because I was ignoring messages about how food was making me feel. I used to sneak food as a kid, especially chocolate and biscuits. I knew what I was doing was wrong on several levels, but sneaking it made me feel like I was getting away with something.

Now I try to remember to bless everything I eat. It’s a practice that really has been helping me with mindfulness.  I hold my hands close to the food, sending love and gratitude into it. Sometimes I use Reiki energy, and sometimes I silently say a prayer of thanks. Taking a few seconds to really pay attention to my food before I shove it into my face forces me to slow down and appreciate it. I’m pretty sure it makes it taste better too. Or maybe that’s just a function of slowing down long enough to really taste it. Either way, I’m grateful.

This week’s challenge: NO JUNK FOOD

I’ve been doing pretty well in the 3 weeks since I officially began ‘The Project’, even with the biological clock drama (you can read more about that craziness here: . I’ve been eating fairly well, getting enough sleep, talking to my body every day and trying to do something creative daily as well. It’s been easy enough thus far, so I thought I should challenge myself.

This week, the goal is to eat really well and by that I mean NO JUNK FOOD! At all. Not even dark chocolate.

I’m not a junk food junkie, I don’t even like most candy or sweets, but I definitely love chocolate, ice cream and lately I’ve been indulging in quite a few gluten-free cookies. I wasn’t a cookie person at all back in the day, but I guess not eating them for years and then finding seriously delicious gluten-free ones unleashed the cookie monster in me.

I’ll tell you which ones, but don’t say I didn’t warn you. They are spectacular:

almond butter cookie 10 pack.jpg

Also, they’re chocolate chip cookies are pretty darn good, but when it comes to chocolate chip, I love Udi’s:

Oh, man,

I’m making this harder on myself. Now I want cookies. I was doing so well today too.

Anyway. NO COOKIES for Kacie. I just need a little break. It’s not you cookies, it’s me. I just need a little time to get my head together, you know? We’re not breaking up, I just need a little space. (You do look so lovely tonight though, I must say).

I am planning on gorging myself on whole, clean foods to fill the cookie shaped hole in my soul. I’m going to stay as far away from refined sugar as I can get, and really limit processed foods.

When I’m snacky, I’ll just have to survive with my Sea Snax.

They are strangely addictive, and a fantastic chip replacement. I used to be a potato chip fiend, and I find I can’t enjoy them in moderation, I just have to stay away. One handful leads to a whole bag in a day or two so I can’t buy them and keep them at home. These Sea snacks taste exactly like the Nori on sushi, yet have a very satisfying salty crispness to them.

So, good luck to me! This will definitely be one of the harder things I’ve put myself up to. The no-drinking thing is going surprisingly well. I think having food poisoning and puking up the last glass of wine I had made it oh so much easier to go without.

I’m off to have some Sea Snax while I watch Star Trek: The Next Generation on Netflick and doodle. A wild Monday, for sure!

I’ll leave you with a dance…. This is how I spent part of this afternoon, just rocking out in my living room, with a hoop.


Being a Stinker (And Other Lessons in Listening)

So…. I used to have a pretty awkward problem.

I was stinky.


Seriously, I was incredibly flatulent. In a very gross way. It was often hilarious, but also highly inconvenient and all kinds of awful.

It really came to a head when I became a vegetarian about 10 years ago. It was so bad, I started taking digestive enzymes to help with it. I had started eating quite a bit more fiber and beans. Took my body awhile to get used to it, but it never really went away. Ask any of my ex’s or my old roommates, it was pretty excessive.

I didn’t think that it was indicative of some kind of issue though. I thought I was just a stinky gal and that was that. It wasn’t until my sister told me she was having issues with wheat/gluten that it even crossed my radar. I started paying attention to when I was stinky (which was most of the time,  making it hard to nail down), but eventually I noticed a correlation between eating things like pizza and pasta or drinking beer with being stinky later. I started trying to eat less bread and such for a while, but that was hard, especially as a vegetarian. I didn’t really change my diet at all. At least, not right away.

A year or two later  I noticed I was getting hives on the inside of my forearms. I thought it might be my laundry detergent, or bed bugs again (I had bed bugs once and had “hives” all over my body and spent a week trying to figure out what I was allergic to before waking up to one crawling on my face. Horrifying). Eventually, I started noticing  they would appear about 12 hours after I ate wheat. It took me awhile to notice/admit it to myself. It took even longer before I really made an effort to take it out of my diet.

I would eat gluten-free for a while and then I would cheat. It would go OK, so I would cheat a little more, and then more. All of a sudden, it would hit me and not only would I get stinky as all hell, and hivey (if that is a word) but other, less pleasant gastrointestinal symptoms popped up. I also became incredibly emotional. It was weird. I would get sad and mad and be basically kind of crazy for no apparent reason. I suspect my emotional instability has to do with the fact that it was making me sick in many ways and I just didn”t feel good. I get kind of crazy like this when I am coming down with the flu as well. I am not a good patient. I’m actually a huge baby when I’m sick. Good thing it’s not very often.

Anyway, I went through this cycle of eating gluten-free, then falling off the wagon over and over again, many, many times. It was during this time I started eating meat again (I always said I would be vegetarian as long as I remained happy and healthy without meat, but it seemed overwhelming to be both meat and gluten-free).  Every time I fell off the wagon and landed on a gooey delicious pizza, I felt worse  and worse.  It’s really only this last year that I’ve been very careful with it, but I still occasionally ate free chocolate cake at work whenever it came available. I was just aware of the sacrifice I would be making (it always seemed worth it at the time).

I had food poisoning on Dec 21,2012. I performed at a super rad Christmas party, stayed for dinner and had to leave around 9 and barely made it home in time. I was 4 1/2 pounds lighter in the morning. I had eaten a questionable piece of fish (I had noted it as a likely food poisoning culprit when I swallowed the rancid bite).  The next few days I ate very sparingly, and was super careful of what I put into my body. I questioned how everything was going to make me feel before I ate it. Any time I tried something that I wasn’t really sure about, sure enough, it hurt my stomach. I started realizing that my body had the answers, and every time I tried to overrule with my brain, it ended badly, with pain.

I felt so good when I listened to what my body really wanted to eat that I decided to just keep going with it. I wanted to explore more deeply and uncover whatever other pieces of wisdom I might find within this bag of flesh. I also started spontaneously loving my body more. Feeling good begets feeling good I guess.

Somewhere along the way, I realized I hadn’t had a drink in a few weeks. Whenever anyone offered me one I declined, remembering the awful sour taste of the wine I had drunk on the 21st as it came back up. I started to relish in my new-found clarity, and realized that the relaxing effect of even a glass of wine made me far less in touch with my body as well as far less productive. I realized my body never really wanted the alcohol. Sure, I love the taste of wine. I have my first Sommelier certification and truly enjoy all the wine babble, but as good as a glass made me feel, it didn’t make me feel good for long. I get sleepy and apathetic after the glass wears off, and if I keep drinking that’s a whole ‘nother set of issues that come up right there.

So, when I realized I wanted to pursue this radical self love project where I listen to whatever my body says, I realized it means staying stone cold sober. For the first time in my life, the idea was thrilling. I’m excited to see how much more productive I will be. In case anyone was interested,  I also no longer stink it up on a regular basis (but being human, I still have the odd moment.)