Nutrition IRL #1

Nutrition IRL = Nutrition "In Real Life"

I have been an avid blog reader for YEARS - we're talkin' 8 years worth of years - and after reading so many blogs {not to mention seeing all my favorite bloggers get married, buy houses, and have all the cute babies!}, I have developed a few preferences. One of these preferences is that I enjoy blogs that illustrate how they (bloggers) really eat & what they are eating.

Like in real life. Sans filters and styling. Why? Because real life happens without filters and recipe cards attached. As all of us with a Pinterest account know, you can plan and save all the inspirational recipes you want, but what actually goes down when the spatula hits the skillet...that's a different story entirely. And that story, I think, is one that deserves telling because it's the story that actually happens

Now, the point of these posts is not to compare what I eat with what you eat. One, I will be the first to admit that I eat some weird stuff from time-to-time. Stuff that legitimately deserves the odd sidelong "wtf is that??" glance. Two, I don't care what you eat. If it makes you happy and feel good, go with it. There are many avenues to eating in a way that makes you feel your best. These are just mine.

These posts exist for the same reason that when my cohort of grad school friends and I chat about our food {or happen to be eyeing-up/smelling something delicious someone made}, we swap ideas and, subsequently, we get inspired. Now, I would be joking if I said that what I eat everyday is inspirational {HA!}, but as a budding RD, the #2 question I get asked is usually about what I eat. {#1 question, if you're curious, being "What do you think about ____ diet??"} Plus, these posts will hopefully reveal that I am a living, breathing, imperfect human with a maniacal sweet tooth {and shaky hands from time to time}. 

So here goes: the first of many weekly posts to show you my imperfect and often unphotogenic meals and snacks. 

Banana & peanut butter oatmeal : 1/2 cup oats, 1 banana, cinnamon, some chia seeds, with 1 egg whipped in during cooking & 1 Tbsp of peanut butter added at the end

Banana & peanut butter oatmeal : 1/2 cup oats, 1 banana, cinnamon, some chia seeds, with 1 egg whipped in during cooking & 1 Tbsp of peanut butter added at the end

I often joke that I have been eating the same breakfast for years. And it's true. Oats have been my jam since undergrad. However, the additions to my oats have changed significantly. These days one of my favorite things is to whip in an egg while cooking the oatmeal - not only does it yield a thicker bowl of oats, but it also adds some protein that keeps my tums full.

Same recipe as above...but adding 1/4 scoop of roasted & pureed beets + 8 drops of liquid stevia + a splash of unsweetened vanilla almond milk.

Same recipe as above...but adding 1/4 scoop of roasted & pureed beets + 8 drops of liquid stevia + a splash of unsweetened vanilla almond milk.

And here's where my oats take a weird turn. I have added grated carrots, zucchini, and squash to my oats in the past, but one day I decided to experiment by adding in pureed beets that I had roasted. And with a little stevia to combat the beets beetiness, it is surprisingly delicious! And pink! 

DIY trail mix: handfuls of bran flakes, dark chocolate M&Ms, raisins, and roasted almonds

DIY trail mix: handfuls of bran flakes, dark chocolate M&Ms, raisins, and roasted almonds

Roasted almonds + hunk of Trader Joe's dark chocolate bar

Roasted almonds + hunk of Trader Joe's dark chocolate bar

My snacks usually include some sweets because, hello, I have a huge sweet tooth. I have been digging the almonds lately and that dark chocolate from Trader Joes {the one in ginormous bar form} is the best ever. Unpictured is a handful of pita chips I occasionally grab & dip in garlic hummus. Pita chips are a recent discovery of mine and all I can think is why did it take me so long??

(Blurry!) Massaged kale salad with chopped carrots, dates, avocado, red onion, and sliced almonds. Also added some shredded parm for a savory note & the dressing is a quick whisking together of olive oil + honey + lemon juice

(Blurry!) Massaged kale salad with chopped carrots, dates, avocado, red onion, and sliced almonds. Also added some shredded parm for a savory note & the dressing is a quick whisking together of olive oil + honey + lemon juice

I surprised myself with my lunch choice this week - I'm usually not a salad gal but this week I had a craving for a hearty kale salad with all the fixins, so I went with it! Goat cheese would also be wonderful with this salad...mmmm, cheese...

Scrambled eggs with mushrooms & onion + avocado toasts on whole wheat bread

Scrambled eggs with mushrooms & onion + avocado toasts on whole wheat bread

I kinda messed up my dinners this week due to my own laziness. I had meant to roast up some chicken thighs I bought fresh but each night I kept procrastinating & would just make something else instead. Oh well! Scrambled eggs with random vegetables I have on hand is one of my go-to "I-don't-have-any-other-ideas-for-dinner" dinners. And avocado toast speaks for itself. {#worththesplurge}

Whole Food's peanut butter bar

Whole Food's peanut butter bar

On weeknights I usually have a small bowl of frozen blueberries & a couple hunks of dark chocolate for dessert but on Saturdays lately I have been treating myself to this beauty: the peanut butter bar at Whole Foods. Have you guys noticed the different bars in the pastry section at WF? I've had the carmelita and coconut magic bar in the past, but this guy is probably my favorite. It's like the biggest Reeses cup ever - could a girl ask for anything more?

Stay tuned for another milk series post later this week! Until then - smile guys, tomorrow is FRIDAY!

-Aly