When it is suddenly time to start planning an event, it is so easy to get wrapped up in the work. Besides for your normal daily chores and errands, this event only adds on more to your already busy brain. The first tip that I would always give is to hire a planner, but if you are audacious enough to take on the party head first, it is important to make sure that you don’t allow your health to slip through the cracks.
I went live on IGTV with Sarah Kassin Nutrition, a registered dietitian based in New York City who also happens to be one of my very close friends. Sarah explains that when your body is in stress mode, Cortisol, the stress hormone increases, causing Grelin (the hunger hormone) to rise and Leptin, the hormone that helps us feel satiated, to decrease. What a disaster! That is not the right combination of hormones that you’d like to have when you have a big event coming up and want to look and feel your best!
Sarah goes on to explain that when it comes to living a healthy lifestyle, there is nothing to stress about! Here are some quick and easy tips that Sarah recommends:
· Always prep from beforehand. Stress hits us at all areas of our lives, so we want to be prepared from before it strikes. Sarah recommends keeping track of your water intake, as well as making sure to integrate some self-care time into your day. Examples of healthy self-care include taking a bath with Epsom salts, playing an instrument, baking, or doing whatever makes you feel happy and relaxed.
· Meal prep can be easier than you think. Healthy snacks are not difficult to prepare in advance and typically can be stored in the fridge for a couple of days. Examples of healthy snacks on the go include a fruit with nut butter, cut up veggies with hummus, or even some Greek yogurt with berries and nuts.
· The key when looking for a store bought healthy snack is to read the ingredients. You want to veer away from packaged goods that have loads of ingredients in them that do not sound natural. When in a pickle, Sarah recommends Jones Bars in which the ingredients are organic, simple and clean. But in her opinion, it is best to make your snacks fresh.
· Integrating small changes will prevent a healthy lifestyle from feeling like constant restriction. There tons of healthy alternatives in the market, some that you may not even taste the difference. Swap your ordinary pasta for a brown rice or quinoa pasta and let me know if you can taste the difference!
· When it comes to exercise, do what you enjoy. You don’t have to start weight lifting if it’s not something you are interested in. Go for a bike ride if you enjoy it. Take a dance class if that’s what you love.
· If you aren’t someone who feels they have the time to exercise, start by integrating 10 minutes a day and see where that takes you. Who knows, you may like it and start to slowly increase the time.
· Nutrition is always about prioritizing. If it is important to you, you will find a way to integrate it into your life.
Here is an example of a healthy snack that Sarah makes at home that is perfect when on the go.
3 ½ cups Tahini Paste
1 cup of honey
1 teaspoon vanilla
Toppings of your choice. Some recommendations are cranberries, almonds, coconut shavings, pecans, chocolate chips, and pistachios.
Add the honey to a pot and place on a low flame until the honey becomes a bit more viscous. Shut the fire and add in the tahini and vanilla. Stir in your toppings and combine fully.
Pour into a parchment paper lined baking tin and set in the refrigerator for 24-48 hours. The Halva should firm up completely. Slice and serve.
Tip: You can also pour into shaped molds for a festive party dessert.
As you read above, halva is made out of tahini paste, which is rich in minerals, protein and fiber. Tahini is also full of antioxidants that can help reduce stress and inflammation.
For those who watched the live, Sarah tested setting the recipe in the freezer overnight. In her opinion, it works but she prefers the consistency of setting it in the refrigerator. Sarah recommends storing your halva in the refrigerator and says that it can last for a while, but lets see how long it will last before you eat it all!
At the end of the day, Sarah states that people stress out most when thinking about all of the healthy changes that they would like to make. Once they start making those changes, they realize that living a healthy lifestyle isn’t as tough as they thought.
If you are interested in learning more about creating or maintaining a healthy lifestyle, contact Sarah directly through her Instagram @SarahKassinNutrition.
Let me know in the comments if you try this recipe and what you think!