snack attack

Volume 1 Issue 12  July 2 2014

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There’s no denying that everyone, at one time or another, has had a snack attack. Views on snacking differ. Some feel that snacking is bad and that eating between meals leads to weight gain. Others believe that eating many small meals and snacks throughout the day is healthy for maintaining energy levels and optimal weight. If there were one way of snacking that was right for everyone, we would all be doing it!


Snack Attack

To alleviate snack attack guilt, try to understand why you are snacking and what snacks work best for your body. Perhaps you snack because your daily diet is missing nutrition, or because you are eating too little at meals. You might be snacking to soothe jangled nerves when you are emotional, or to entertain yourself when you are bored. Whatever your reason, acknowledge it and start thinking about how to create a life that is nourishing and truly satisfying.

Although snacks are no substitute for loving your life, they can be great energy boosters. Many convenient snack foods are highly processed and full of chemicals, additives, damaging fats and refined sugars. When a snack attack hits you, try foods that are filling and satisfying, but also nutritious. Here are some tips:

  • Snack on things that don’t come in a plastic wrapper or a box, like fresh fruit, leftover vegetables or rice cakes with almond butter and fruit spread.
  • Make your own signature trail mix, organic hot chocolate made with almond milk sweetened with agave nectar, or blue corn chips with hummus.

You can also try “upgrading”:

  • If you are craving something crunchy, upgrade from potato chips to raw carrots, apples or whole grain crackers.
  • If you are craving a candy bar, upgrade to a handful of nuts and dried fruit.
  • Instead of a cup of coffee, upgrade to green tea.

Instead of ice cream, upgrade to applesauce with cinnamon.

Upgraded snacks are high in nutrition and give you a greater sense of satiety and satisfaction; you won’t feel physically or psychologically deprived, and you’ll have plenty of energy to sustain your activities for hours.

Snacking is enjoyable and there is a wide variety of healthful goodies for whatever you’re craving, be it sweet, crunchy, salty, creamy or spicy. Dive in, be creative and enjoy your snack attack!



Food Focus: Fruit                                                                                                                              

A healthy lifestyle is the key to longevity, optimum weight, abundant energy and balance. By using fruit to satisfy our taste for sweetness, we can leave behind the use of chemical, processed and refined sweeteners. Fruits are easy to digest, are cleansing and cooling and are great for those who are overstressed and overheated from excessive mental strain or hot climates. Fruits are filled with fiber and liver stimulants, which act as natural, gentle laxatives. Whenever possible, buy fresh, locally grown fruit as opposed to imported fruits shipped from far-off places. This keeps you eating in season, and more in harmony with your environment and climate.

Eating raw fruit in summer months is highly cooling, while baking it in the winter months neutralizes the cooling effect. Fruit in the form of juice is a great choice for cleansing the body, but be aware that juice rapidly raises blood sugar levels, leading to an energy crash soon after. Frozen, whole, puréed or juiced fruit can make great summertime cool-down treats. Try frozen grapes, banana-coconut smoothie popsicles or lime juice ice-cubes in iced tea!

bananas orange pineappleWhether you are having fresh fruit for a light early morning breakfast, a midday snack or evening treat, enjoy nature’s sweetness and whenever possible buy organic.

Here are a few summer fruits and their health benefits. Enjoy!

Apricots: Great for lung conditions and asthma; used to help treat anemia due to their high copper and cobalt content.

Bananas: Help to lubricate the intestines, treat ulcers, detoxify the body and manage sugar cravings; are rich in potassium (which helps hypertension).

Cherries: Slightly warming in nature; increase overall body energy, remedy arthritis and rheumatism and are rich in iron, which improves the blood.

Grapefruits: Treat poor digestion, increase appetite during pregnancy, alleviate intestinal gas and reduce mucus conditions of the lungs.

Papayas: Tone the stomach, act as digestive aid, moisten the lungs and alleviate coughing; contain carpaine, an anti-tumor compound.

Raspberries: Benefit the liver and kidneys, cleanse blood of toxins, regulate menstrual cycles, treat anemia and can promote labor at childbirth.


Cooper’s Kitchen Recipe of the Week:

Fruit Nut Smoothie

Prep time: 5 minutes              Yield: 2 servings

fresh fruit


  • 1 banana
  • 1 cup soy or rice or almond milk
  • 1 cup seasonal berries
  • 1 cup diced melon
  • 1/2 cup almonds
  • 2-4 ice cubes

Directions:  Mix in blender for 1-2 minutes and serve.

Note: You can add other ingredients for added nutrition such as a  coconut oil, flax seed oil, spirulina powder or a scoop of protein powder.

 Forward to a Friend

It’s such a pleasure to help those closest to us become happier and healthier. Please forward this newsletter to friends, family members or colleagues who might be interested and inspired by it.


Signature Elaine-single

P.S.    The world belongs to those with the most energy.

says  Alexis de Tocqueville

Elaine Cooper IHC Integrative Health Coach/Chef Santé Intégrale

AADP Certified/Certifié

Putting the ”F” into FUN making practical food & lifestyle adjustments for reviving not merely surviving.

You are receiving this newsletter because you expressed interest in receiving it, subscribed or are enrolled in Your Better Living Coach Wellness Programs.  If you no longer wish to receive this simply unsubscribe.

Will welcome you back anytime!

NOTE : This post is not intended to be used for the diagnosis or treatment of a health problem or as a substitute for consulting a licensed medical professional. Its always the best practice to consult your doctor for a comprehensive guide/advice on health problems.


I dare to disagree


Volume 1 Issue 10  June 11 2014

One of the greatest writers and poets that ever lived…Maya Angelou passed away recently at the age of 84. I got to know her through the Oprah Winfrey Show and attended her appearance in Montreal. I loved her compassion and bravery. Back then, I took this to heart when she said “We just ought to accept that going through “the change” we become the ‘watchers of the night” (sleepless) and that weight gain was all a part of it”.

Today, I dare to disagree!  Based on what I have learned and experienced personally and professionally, that does not have to be the case. I shared this with a mechanic-minded guy I was coaching on improving his nutrition. “How can you expect to get the desired results from a diesel engine if you fuel it  with unleaded gas?”

Expecting our bodies to perform without nourishing them properly does not make any sense.    Was I tempted to grab some fast food on the fly with moving (AGAIN), this time settling into my new place? Sure, but I knew that by doing that I couldn’t expect to have the energy or concentration I needed.  Know only too well how quickly the fibromyalgia beast can take over.


I am including one of my favourite soups made earlier for the busyness of this week.  It hit the spot for a nourishing quickie.  See below for the recipe.

Another FIT FAST FUN Recipe from Cooper’s Kitchen

Coconut Cream Soup

Coconut Ginger Soup

Serves: 4

Roasted butternut squash soup, made creamy with coconut and spiced with ginger and fragrant cardamom.
  • 1 butternut squash  (May subsititute with combo of carrots, sweet potato and squash)
  • 2 large onions
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 ½ tbsp olive or grapeseed oil
  • Sea Salt
  • 750ml (3¼ cup) vegetable stock
  • ¾ tsp cardamom (or to taste)
  • 3 tsp grated fresh ginger
  • 240ml (1 cup) coconut milk
  1. Preheat oven to 350F
  2. Peel the butternut squash and onions, (sweet potatoes, carrots) cut  into chunks and place in baking dish or on a cookie sheet.
  3. Add in the garlic and vegetable oil, season with salt and mix well.
  4. Roast vegetables in oven for up to 40 minutes until they start to turn brown
  5.  Stir vegetables frequently during roasting so that they cook evenly on all sides.
  6. When vegetables are caramelised switch off the oven and keep warm.
  7. Heat the stock in a pot until it is boiling.
  8. Reduce heat and add the ginger, cardamom and roasted vegetables and simmer for about 8 minutes for flavours combine
  9. Switch off heat and allow soup to cool.
  10. Puree soup in the pot with hand blender.
  11. Then add in coconut milk, mix well and adjust seasoning.
  12. Warm soup thoroughly and garnish with coconut milk and or roasted butternut squash seeds before serving.
Adjust spices to your specific taste.


Bon Appetit!


“Try to be a rainbow in someone’s cloud.”

~Maya Angelou, RIP

don’t be left out

Volume 1 Issue 9  June 4 2014

There is nothing that says summer like the smell of a sizzling BBQ. I rarely cook inside once the weather is nice.  It’s easier on the cleanup too.  But what if you aren’t into or able to eat those burgers and steaks like everyone else? You don’t have to feel left out. Or, maybe you just want to try something a little different?

Crunchy, chewy with a crispy outer shell, these delicious veggie burgers aren’t anything like the ones I’ve tried from the grocery store!  They are light on the beans with a nice mixture of chopped almonds, sunflower seeds, breadcrumbs and seasonings.  They cook just as well in the oven, griddle, or BBQ.

They can be also made gluten-free by using gluten-free oats, soy sauce, and breadcrumbs. If I don’t have any on hand, I toast a couple of slices then process them for instant breadcrumbs.

I made this recipe for retreat guests last summer. They loved it! Hope you will too.

****BTW- Fresh Pesto is a must for added yumminess! Just made some so I sneaked in an extra recipe for you this week.****

Recipe of the week

~~~~~Another RECIPE  from COOPER’S KITCHEN ~~~~~

 (darned near perfect)     Veggie Burger


  • l large garlic clove, minced
  • ½ cup onion, diced
  • Flax eggs: 2.5 tbsp ground flax + ½ c. warm water, mixed in bowl OR 1 egg
  • 1 cup gluten-free oats oats, processed into flour (or regular oats)
  • 1.5 c. bread crumbs ( I toasted 3 slices and processed into fine crumbs)
  • 1 cup grated carrots
  • 1 cup cooked black beans,(rinsed and roughly pureed or mashed
  • heaping ¼ cup fresh herbs (like chives, parsley, cilantro or even a mix)
  • 1/3 cup almonds chopped (toasted if you prefer
  • ½ cup sunflower seeds, (also toasted if you prefer)
  • ½ tbsp Extra Virgin Olive oil OR grapeseed oil
  • 1 tbsp GF Tamari (soy sauce) or regular
  • 1.5 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • 1 tsp. oregano
  • sea salt and black pepper to taste (about ½ tsp sea salt)
  • 2 tsp. turmeric
  • a dozen or so button mushrooms finely chopped


Preheat oven or BBQ to 350F. In a large skillet sauté onions and garlic in 1/2 tbsp oil. Add chopped mushrooms. Stir occasionally and cook until mushrooms are soft and have lost most of their moisture. Cool. Mix flax egg (if using) in a small bowl and set aside for about 10 mins.Place all ingredients except spices and salt into a large mixing bowl and stir very well. It’s now time to add the seasonings.

    1. With slightly moist hands shape dough into patties. For uniform size use an ice cream scoop for measure. Pack dough tightly to help it stick together. I made about 8 good sixe patties.
    2. To cook: On an oiled skillet about 5 minutes each side: Baked in oven 25-30 mins. 15 minutes each side.


BBQ: prebake for about 15 minutes in oven before placing on a pre-heated grill
Doneness: with any of the above methods when golden and crisp on each side*
NOTE: *They might not be as firm as meat burgers but they sure look like them! They freeze up beautifully.


BONUS for you this week!     FRESH PESTO

Serve on burgers, spread on pizza crust as base, crackers or flat breads or in soups or stews.

Herb Medley


  •  2 cups fresh basil leaves, packed or fresh herb medleyequal amounts of parsley, chives & cilantro
  •  1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan-Reggiano or Romano cheese (exclude for DF option)
  •  1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  •  1/3 cup pine nuts or walnuts (optional)
  •  3 medium sized garlic cloves, minced
  •  Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste


  1.  Combine the basil in with the pine nuts, pulse a few times in a food processor. (If you are using walnuts instead of pine nuts and they are not already chopped, pulse them a few times first, before adding the basil).
  2. Add the garlic, pulse a few times more. Slowly add the olive oil in a constant stream while the food processor is on. Stop to scrape down the sides of the food processor with a rubber spatula.
  3. Add the grated cheese and pulse again until blended. Add a pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.

Note: Take advantage of fresh herbs in season. Can be frozen in a cube tray and popped into a freezer bag after firm.  Easy to pop out and quick to thaw.

Preserving Pesto

Elaine Cooper IHC

Integrative Health Coach/Chef Santé Intégrale

AADP Certified/Certifié


Putting the ”F” into FUN making practical food & lifestyle adjustments

You are receiving this newsletter because you expressed interest in receiving it, subscribed or are enrolled in Your Better Living Coach Wellness Programs.  Sure don’t want to bug you so if no longer want to receive this just unsubscribe. Will welcome you back anytime!

NOTE : This post is not intended to be used for the diagnosis or treatment of a health problem or as a substitute for consulting a licensed medical professional. Its always the best practice to consult your doctor for a comprehensive guide/advice on health problems.