Real Food and Real Results
“Real Food is Always Better than Fake Food!” This has become my signature statement for choosing healthful and nutritious foods. Mother Nature knew what she was doing when she created our food supply. The closer you can get you food to the way Mother Nature created it, the more nourishing and healthier it will be for your body. This means whole grains, locally grown fresh fruits and vegetables in season; foods that come without packaging or bar codes and only have one ingredient in them. Refined, processed and packaged foods, foods that have ingredients that you don’t recognize and can’t pronounce, foods that have additives and preservatives, or have been genetically altered (GMOs) or irradiated are not the best choices. If you choose real food over fake foods it will also eliminate the need for substitute foods such as diet sodas, low-fat dressings processed cheese food (not even real cheese). In general these diet foods have had something taken out of them and had it replaced with something even less healthy. So, whenever you have a question about the healthiest choice, or the latest fad, just remember: “Real Food is Always Better … “, and ask yourself, “How close is this food to the way Mother Nature created it?”
One thing I’ve learned over the years is that our over-consumption of certain foods has made some individuals less tolerant of them. Add to that the fact that much of our supply of these foods has been genetically altered (GMO), they just are not as healthy and nutritious as they used to be. I learned a long time ago that although I am not “allergic” to wheat and wheat products that I feel much better when I avoid them. Don’t even get me started on food additives and preservatives.
Many of us have “hidden” food intolerance or sensitivities to certain foods. These foods include wheat— which is not GMO but has been over hybridized—and all products containing wheat (even if it is whole grain), (corn and products derived from corn like corn syrup), peanuts and other legumes, soybeans and soy products (now mostly GMO) & dairy products (most cows consume GMO corn). I like the plan that I follow and recommend to others because it can “meet people where they are” with regard to food quality and what they are used to eating. However, the goal is to get people eating consistently in a way that manages their blood sugar, and when they start feeling better, cravings are reduced, and they are experiencing other positive results, it becomes easier and easier to make healthier choices. Virtually everyone, including fitness models, when they eat the highest quality meals will eliminate these foods from their diet when they want to be their leanest, healthiest and have optimal energy. My recent research shows that between 70-80 percent of the foods we purchase in stores have GMO foods in them. Top GMO’s include corn, soy, canola oil (rapeseed), cotton, milk, & sugar. And Aspartame comes from a GMO bacteria! YUCK!
My achy joints stopped aching and my digestion and elimination is better when I don’t eat wheat, flour, pasta or any wheat containing foods. If you have a food intolerance or sensitivity you may not even know it. The easiest thing to do is to eliminate all of those foods that are suspect for 30 days and then try re-introducing them one at a time to see what effects they have.
Make a Decision and Know Your “Whys”
Regardless of whether you are trying to lose 10 pounds, 100 pounds, become a fitness model, build wealth, or achieve any other worthy goal you need to start by making a defining decision to achieve your goal. Make your decision, write it down, and then list all of the reasons why that goal is important to you. This simple exercise alone will significantly improve your odds of success in any endeavor.
Get Clear about what Optimal Health & Fitness means to you
This has to do with visualization. Think about it, write it down; visualize it every day. What will your life be like when you reach your goal? How will you look? How will you feel? How will other people react to your differently. What activities will you participate in that you do not right now? This exercise will help you bring your vision into reality.
Download the Master Your Mindset Worksheet
Affirmation: “Knowing I have the power to change, I can create what I want in any area of my life.
My thoughts create my reality, and if I can dream it then I can achieve it”.
The difference between Those Who Achieve their Goals and those that Do Not
The single most important thing that makes one person successful and another fail is the difference in their mindset. When I meet with a client for the first time, I help them determine not only what they want but why they want to achieve their goals. There are many stages that we go through when we want to achieve a new goal. We can be contemplating making some changes, getting ready to make the changes, or committed. If you are committed then you are absolutely motivated, willing and determined to do whatever it takes to implement the actions required in order to achieve the outcome or result that you want. If you have a big enough why or enough desire, given the right tools and information, you will achieve the outcome you desire.
Many of you may have struggled with your weight for years or even decades. People who have had this struggle often feel guilty, embarrassed and ashamed of their weight and appearance. I’ve met with countless individuals who no longer even believed that they were capable of losing weight much less keeping it off. I know when I was struggling with my weight I felt all of those things. I completely understand what it feels like to be locked inside a prison that you don’t feel you can escape from because it happens to be your body. I remember the years of looking in my mirror and being shocked and unhappy at the matronly woman who was staring back at me. I was unhappy, uncomfortable and self-conscious all of the time!
Guess what? This is very important—Focusing on losing weight and being unhappy and uncomfortable won’t help you achieve your goals! Therefore, the very first thing I want you to do is to begin practicing self-acceptance. Don’t put any more energy into feeling guilty or unhappy about where you are right now, today. Instead, give yourself some gratitude for taking the simple but powerful first step to evaluate where you are and where you want to be. KNOW that you have taken the first step to achieve your goals of losing body fat and of having a healthier body. Remember, you didn’t get where you are right now in just a day, so it will take some time to change the habits that got you there. Within a couple of weeks you should start seeing results and feeling better. You won’t have to get “all the way” to your goal to begin enjoying the rewards of more energy and looking and feeling leaner.
Step #1. Decide What You Want
Here is a Secret of all Masters in achieving success in any areas of their lives. Decide what you want. Make a decision and keep choosing the same thing over and over until your will is made manifest in your reality. Neale Donald Walsch in Conversations with God, Book 2
Regardless of the goal, whether it is in the area of your health, wealth or any other area of your life, one of the most important success strategies is to decide exactly what you want. Decide what you want and be very clear about what that will look and feel like when you achieve it. Simply saying, “I want to lose some weight” is too vague. Be specific. You can use the following examples to write a better goal for yourself:
- I want to eat and exercise optimally so that I lose “X” amount of excess body fat and increase &/or tone my muscle mass.
- I want to have a fit and healthy size “X” body and look and feel my best everyday.
- I want to increase my muscle mass by “X” percent, reduce my fat body mass by “X” percent, so I will look more toned and have more energy.
Think about and visualize what your life will be like when you have achieved your goal. How will you feel and what activities will you participate in that you are not participating in now? Will you dress differently? Feel different about yourself?
Step #2. Visualize yourself AS IF …
Your mind is a powerful tool for helping you get what you want in life. That’s because much of what goes on in your mind is nothing more than a story that you made up. Now that can be a very bad thing or it can be a very ‘cool’ thing. Think of it like being on a movie set except that you (through your mind) get to play all of the parts. You get to be the story teller, you write the script; you get to be the Producer; you get to be the Director; you get to be the Star! Now, this is really important….YOU get to decide whether your movie has a HAPPY ENDING or a sad one. It’s all in the story you make up.
Here’s how this all relates to this program. First you will make a DECISION to take control of your own health and fitness…something many of you may have neglected for too long. Next I you will make a TOTAL COMMITMENT to create a laser focus on getting the result. Then you will create a lot of CLARITY around just what health and fitness means for you. You will need to learn how to eat healthy and exercise consistently and set your target goals.
Focus on what you want to achieve and what your life will be like when you reach your goals. If you focus on being a fit and healthy person, you will start to act like a fit and healthy person, making healthier food choices and being more active. If you focus on “being fat”, “being unhappy”, and “wanting to lose weight” your mind and your attitude are still in “fat mode” and you will tend to act accordingly. I think we’d all rather focus on being fit, healthy, active and attractive and bring our actions in line with that visualization—your results will naturally follow!
Here is a true story:
One of my clients set a target goal of dropping 20lbs of body fat and reducing his waistline by 3 inches over a 40-day period. Pretty lofty goals, but he decided he wanted to ‘test’ himself and see just what was possible if he did everything right for 40 days. He wanted to discover what kind of transformation he could achieve for himself. This client got very clear on what he wanted to achieve, made a huge commitment to do everything correctly for 40 days to see what would happen. I am proud to report that he achieved his goals! A big part of his success was that he used visualization. Here’s what he shared with me: “As a big part of creating clarity, I VISUALIZE myself not as I am, but AS-IF I am already that person who has released 20 lbs of body fat….meaning my ‘mind’s-picture’ of me is 20 lbs lighter. By doing so the mind begins to ‘adapt’ and ‘believe’ in your change and seeks to move you from where you are to where your mind’s eye sees you.”
This wasn’t just any client. He was a very successful self-made multi-multi millionaire who had created a very successful Financial Planning Service and appears on Fox News every Tuesday. He even went public on the news with his challenge! He assembled his team of experts, and I was his Nutrition Coach and Meditation Consultant. He and I agreed that regardless of the goal, whether it is to make a million dollars before your 40th birthday, which he had achieved plus some, or to lose 100 pounds, the success strategies are the same. What makes the difference is applying those success strategies to the right techniques (meaning having the correct information to implement your plan). Not only did I coach Stewart in his original goals, I went on to coach his entire staff in his business, and finally helped him with his book, Think Like A Self Made Millionaire.
Other great examples of using Visualization include two of the greatest golfers of all time, Jack Nicklaus and Tiger Woods—both of who have stated that they ‘Visualize’ every shot before they actually swing on the ball—even their practice shots! Deepak Chopra goes into this process in depth in his book, Golf for Enlightenment: The Seven Lessons for the Game of Life. I would highly recommend that book even if you are not a golfer.
Then there’s the research that included 3 groups of basketball players. The first group did not practice their free throws and saw no improvement; the second group practiced 2 hours per day and saw a marked improvement in their free throw percentages; the 3rd group ‘visualized’ shooting successful free throws for 2-hours per day but they didn’t actually practice. The result? The group using visualization saw their free throw percentage nearly match that of group #2!
Visualization can make a huge difference in both achieving and accelerating your intended results, whether your intention is to achieve greater health and fitness or to become financially free or to greatly improve your relationships. When you use the visualization process it actually begins to change your brain and you start creating new neurological pathways. My physician friend, Dr. Rick Brown, tells me there is a medical term for this, “Brain Plasticity”.
Start now. Visualize exactly what you look like after having participated in our program. Don’t be afraid to ‘see’ an astounding NEW YOU! Use the following form to create your vision of what having a fit and healthy body means to you. Use the Master Your Mindset Worksheet to help you, or create your own in a personal journal.
Step #3: Act “As If”
When you change your decisions and goals in a way to put them in the present tense, “as if” it is already true then you will begin to behave “as if” you already are fit, healthy, and full of energy. Indeed you BECOME that person and begin to do and behave “as if” it were already true. And when you change your actions, the results follow.
Act as if you have already achieved your goals. You will look and feel better and improve your results. If you tend to “hide” in baggy clothes—I call them my goddess clothes—then stop! Dress yourself in your nicest clothes that make you feel the best every day. Get out and be active. Don’t postpone any other activity “until you lose weight”. Start living your life fully TODAY. And if you act as if you are already fit and healthy, eating and exercising as fit and healthy people do, then you will become fit and healthy!
Remember to state these things in the present and in the positive. Instead of saying “I want to lose weight”, say to yourself, “I want a lean and fit body.” Or “I have achieved my optimal body composition and I look and feel my best.” If you focus on “losing weight” then you are still calling that weight into your reality. Instead, focus on calling optimal health and wellbeing; “being fit and healthy” into your reality. And if you state things as “I want” than the universe continues to keep you in the “wanting” state. If you state that you ARE a fit and healthy person and that you have optimal body weight so you can live your life to the fullest everyday, you will quickly find yourself “acting as if” you are fit and healthy and have optimal body composition and weight. You will find yourself making choices “as if” it were already true and very soon you will be moving in the direction of your intended outcome!
I want you to take a few moments to start getting even more clarity about what you want to achieve. State what you want not only in the positive but make it measurable. How many pounds do you want to weigh? What Body Fat Percentage do you want to achieve? What size clothing do you want to be able to wear?
This is what I have decided I want to achieve in the area of my health: ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Fueling Your Decision with Power!
Great job so far—now let’s give your decision some power! Now you have taken the step to “Decide What You Want” to achieve. Remember a secret of those who achieve great goals is they keep choosing the same thing over and over until they bring it into their reality. This means every small decision they make along the way will continue to support what they have chosen. You must keep choosing the same thing, over and over until it has become your reality. In order to do this we must give your decision power and passion! You need a big enough why to keep you focused and on track. In this exercise we will fuel your decision with power by using the Universal Law of Intention and Desire.
Remember, what we think we create and what we think we become!
OK, now you are ready. I want you to write down all the reasons why you want what you have promised yourself. Why is it important to you that you achieve your goal? How will your life be different? How will it feel to do, be and have what you have decided you want? What is your why?
Now you have made your decision and a promise about what you want to achieve. You have fueled it with energy and passion by giving it a big enough WHY! You now realize that every decision you make along the way will bring you either one step closer or further away from what you have decided to create. And remember, the Secret of the Masters is they keep choosing the same thing, over and over, until they have made what they want manifest in their reality.
Your Thoughts & Beliefs Create Your Reality
Our bodies and the state of our health and fitness is a reflection of our experiences over the last few years. Our bodies are not solid and fixed, but are an ever flowing river of energy and information which are in dynamic exchange with our environment. Our bodies are made to spontaneously rejuvenate, heal and support us. Most of the diseases we associate with aging are actually caused by our lifestyle choices and stress. We can choose to support our bodies and have optimal health and well-being as we age.
Remember, what you think, you create! “I am strong and healthy and I always make the best choice to nurture my mind, body and spirit.”
Make a Commitment to Yourself!
Now it is time for you to make your decision and a commitment to yourself to make yourself a priority for a fixed amount of time. You should now be clear now about what you want to achieve in the area of Health and Fitness. When you write down your goals in the form of a commitment you are more likely to achieve them. A commitment is a promise to yourself and it is much more powerful than a goal. Use the following Commitment Form to get clear on what you want and why you want it, and the action steps you are committed to taking in order to achieve what you want. This form can actually be used to make a commitment in any area of your life, so feel free to use it to make a commitment in the area of Wealth, Career, Relationships, or any other area where you would like to achieve a new level of success.
Thoughts are things, and they are powerful things. Thoughts are subtle vibrations and they have energy. When you share your promise with someone else, you are putting your promise into Words which are powerful creating vibrations!
Ask For What You Need
An essential part of success in any aspect of life is to be willing to ask for support! I’ve discovered that sometimes this is difficult, and occasionally I fall into that category myself. I believe in personal accountability and I admit, I like being in control. Sometimes those ideas and qualities do not go hand in hand with asking for and receiving support. I have learned though that it is equally important to be not only a good giver, but also a good receiver.
Ask the people in your life to support you both at home and at work. Let them know some specific things that would be helpful to you that they can do, such as support you and your schedule for your daily workouts; not bringing tempting, unhealthy foods into the office or home. You may even ask a friend or colleague, to be your accountability partner or join you on your new plan.
One thing I’ve learned in life is that “How you do anything is how you do everything.” So if you are hesitant to ask for support for your Health & Fitness, where else in life might you be hesitant to ask for and receive support from those around you? So let me ask you, where are you getting support for your goals and are you asking for what you need? Have you asked the people around you to support you in your health and fitness goals?
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Calories in and calories out! We’ve been told that all we need to do in order to reach our weight loss goals is to create a calorie deficit. That sounds so simple, but obviously there is more to it or most of us would already have permanently achieved our weight loss goals. With more than two thirds of the United States Population overweight, and a large percentage obese, clearly there is more to the story!
How many of you have lost weight only to gain it back? How many of you seem to start a diet every Monday only to have fallen off or become frustrated before the end of the first week? How many of you seem to find it impossible to lose weight?
I know because I have had all of those experiences! I felt as though every time I tried to “cut a calorie” here my body seemed to find it somewhere else. In fact, over time I continued to GAIN weight instead of losing weight, even through I was making pretty healthy food choices and exercising. What the heck? Since my education was in Exercise Physiology, I was really beating myself up because I believed I was supposed to have the answers and be healthy and fit. What I needed to know I had not been taught in college – even at the Masters level. Ironically, when I finally DID learn how to fuel my body correctly I recalled that one of the basic principles I’d learned in 7th Grade. I’ll tell you what that was later. For now, I’m going to help you understand WHY many of the diets you may have tried have not worked.
Here is the biggest Weight Loss Myth: A Calorie is Just a Calorie
We have heard for years that a calorie is just a calorie; that all calories are created equally and that if you want to lose weight all you need to do is just burn more calories than you take in. Anyone who has struggled with their weight for very long will certainly agree that they have discovered that it is just not that simple. If it were, we would not have the obesity problem that we have today. Our hormones have a LOT to do with how we metabolize our food! What else matters? When we eat, how much we eat at a time, how long we go between eating, and the type and quality of the calories we are consuming all make a difference in how our bodies respond to the calories we consume. Often people trying to lose weight inadvertently keep their bodies in “fat storage mode” by going too long between meals, then eating too many calories at once, and of then the wrong kind of calories. This ultimately prevents weight loss success and slows metabolism.
Here are a few common dieting mistakes:
- Not eating breakfast. Yes, your mother was right – you need to start your day with breakfast. You should eat within an hour upon waking up. When you haven’t eaten all night your blood sugar will be on the low side. Eating a balanced breakfast will give your body the fuel it needs and jump start your metabolism for the day.
- Popular Low Carb Diets. Diets that put your body into ketosis by avoiding carbohydrates give you quick results in the beginning, but are not a long-term solution to losing body fat. The quick results in the beginning come, in part, from losing water weight. This method of losing weight also causes your body to work harder to make fuel and you will begin to break down lean body mass as well as losing fat. Your goal is to lose fat, not lean body (or muscle) mass. In addition, you can not eat this way permanently and when you resume eating carbohydrates most people gain the weight back.
- Going too long between meals. When you wait too long between meals you will become over hungry. Starving all day sets you up to over eat, or eat the wrong things when you do finally eat. When you eat this way it messes up your metabolism and large meals eaten infrequently encourage fat storage. Eating small frequent meals during the day will help sustain your energy level, improve metabolism, and encourage fat burning.
- Not drinking enough water. It is not uncommon to mistake thirst for hunger. When you don’t drink enough water your body actually starts holding onto water. Seems like the opposite should be true but it is not. You should drink a MINIMUM of 64 ounces of water per day or half your body weight in ounces. For example a 150 pound person should drink at least 75 ounces of water per day.
- Not having a plan. We don’t plan to fail we fail to plan. When you are trying to reach a new weight or level of fitness you need a plan to follow. It takes some advance preparation to make certain you stay on the plan. Carry food with you and have a backup plan for emergencies.
- Binging after you have eaten off your plan. Don’t wait until tomorrow to get back on track. We all fall off of our plan from time to time. What matters most is how fast you get back on track. Make it your goal to lengthen the amount of time between the times you fall track and shorten the time you jump back on after you have fallen off.
- Believing you are genetically destined to be overweight. Some of us are more predisposed to gain weight, but the major factor in whether you are carrying around excess weight is how you you’re your life. Your lifestyle choices have more to do with how much you weigh than your genetic make up.
- Eating processed or substitute foods. Real food is always better than fake food. Eating foods as close to the way they were grown as possible is the best way to support optimal health. Processed foods often contain ingredients that you don’t need or are unhealthy for your body. Often “substitute” foods contain unhealthy chemicals and toxins your body would be healthier without. As for those diet sodas … even artificial sweeteners can cause an insulin reaction in your body and they contain a lot of unhealthy chemicals. Eat local and fresh fruits and vegetables in season whenever possible.
- Being too attached to your scales. I’ve said it a million times, “The scales are not your friend!” Weigh at the same time of day with the same amount of clothing. The scales aren’t always the most accurate measure of whether you are consistently losing fat. Some experts recommend weighting only once a week. I like to weigh daily, first thing in the morning when I’m working toward a new goal. Your scales are not the only measurement of results. One month, when I began resistance training, I lost an entire size in my jeans without losing a pound on the scales. What did that mean? I lost body fat and gained lean body mass (muscle)! If I had gone entirely by the scale I’d have felt frustrated, while in reality my body changed in a very positive way that month.
- Not eating enough food. Eating a lot less or going on a crash diet will not achieve the results you want. This strategy results in lowering metabolism and losing both muscle and fat. Total calories are important, but so are the amounts of protein, carbohydrates and fats in the diet, and the frequency of your meals.
Never go on any diet that is not a manner of eating that you can adhere to for the rest of your life. In addition to losing excess body fat you want to develop healthy habits that will promote your optimal weight and health for the rest of your life! Don’t think that going on a temporary “diet” will give you lasting weight loss results. If you want to change you life your will need to change some habits so you can sustain your results long term! Trust the process. Once you begin to eat in a more healthful way you will not only see but feel the results, and you will likely choose to continue more healthy lifestyle habits! It won’t be a matter of forcing yourself into what you “should” be doing—you will genuinely want and enjoy your new choices!
I love Trader Joe’s! The nearest one is an hour away so when I go I stock up! A picture is worth 1,000 words, so I headed over to take some photos of some of the foods that I stock up on. Everything listed below is grain, legume, dairy, sugar & artificial additive free. That means no peanuts, no soy or soybeans, no gluten, and no sneaky sugars! Some folks ask, well if you are going to cut all of that out, what’s left? As you will see there is plenty!
Download the pdf version of my Trader Joe’s Shopping Guide Here
Trader Joe’s has so many delicious options in their produce department that are not typically available in my traditional grocery store. The variety of organic produce is always great, and if you need some time saving prepared veggies they are available! Here are a few examples. Certainly there are more options and they will vary from season to season and store to store. Yesterday I picked up some of the Kohlrabi Salad Blend (which is new), Peeled Garlic, ORGANIC Sweet Potatoes (I brought home TWO bags of those!), a bag of potato medley, and if you hate dicing vegetables for salads and recipes grab a container of the Healthy 8 Vegetable Mix. This list is certainly not exhaustive! I regularly pick up a bag of avocados from this department and local tomatoes, lemons, oranges, and seasonal fruits and vegetables.
Prepared Food: Meats & More
Of course prepared meats may cost a little more than if you cook everything yourself. However, I find that it is a great thing to have some of these on hand for meals in a hurry or when I just don’t want to cook something. One of my “new favorites” is the Spicy Italian Chicken Sausage. It is rare to find sausage that has no sugar. This sausage is already cooked. I like to remove the casing and crumble it into a skillet with egg and let it heat as the egg cooks. Fast and delicious breakfast! I’ve tried ALL of these, and have most of them in my refrigerator right now! That Sauerkraut is the best, and I enjoy it with the Applegate Organic Beef Hot Dogs.
I pick up Raw California Walnut Pieces, Pecan Pieces, Hazelnuts, Raw Almonds &/or Almond Slivers, Pinenuts, Whatever you need they have it. I generally purchase walnut and pecan pieces (rather than halves) because they are less expensive, and most likely I’m going to chop them, anyway. You’ll also find some packages of snack sized portions of nuts, such as raw almonds. Remember, on the first 30 Days of our challenge, no peanuts (they are actually a legume and not a nut, anyway).
You’ll find about the largest assortment of dried fruit at Trader Joe’s that you will find anywhere. I like to keep stocked up on dried cranberries, berry blend, and I just picked up the Dried Berry Medley for the first time to try. These dried fruits make a delightful addition to all salads, but also chicken salad in particular. If you want to make your own trail mix, you can do it with an assortment of dried fruit, coconut flakes and nuts from TJ’s. Remember when you are purchasing dried fruits to check the nutrition labels. Some dried fruits will have added sugars. Fruit juice is okay as a sweetener, but during your first 30 days on this plan, our goal is to eliminate ALL added sugars and sweeteners.
Here’s where I really stock up when I go to TJ’s, especially since it’s an hour away and generally I don’t go but once every 4-6 weeks. Not pictured here is TJ’s Marinara Sauce. There are only a few that do not have sugar in them. The last time I went, the only one I could find with no sugar was the Marinara Sauce sold in the green can. I’ve seen a couple of others with no sugar, but they weren’t available at either the store in Georgia nor the one in Virginia when I shopped recently. Always read the labels to be sure! I shop for coconut oil, ghee, olive oil & avocado oil at TJ’s. They have a variety of sugar & additive free salsas which I use in recipes rather than on chips. TJ’s Fire Roasted diced tomatoes and their tomato paste in a tube are items I keep in my pantry all the time. For my emergency food stash I picked up cashew cookie Larabars, single serving pouches of olives and some Sacha Inchi Seeds, a super-food I discovered when I was living in Peru. Organic Coconut Amino’s are a great gluten, soy and sugar free alternative to soy sauce. I also keep almond & coconut flour on hand.
I can find some of the best frozen meats & seafood in TJ’s frozen department. From organic chicken breasts, grass fed angus beef, fresh caught tuna & salmon to a variety of perfectly portioned burgers.
Frozen Fruits & Vegetables:
I always pick up an assortment of fruits & vegetables in the frozen section. They have the best variety of frozen organic fruits and vegetables I’ve seen anywhere, and at good prices. I didn’t picture everything here, for sure! In addition to what is below I always pick up a several bags of frozen organic chopped spinach, broccoli, Brussels Sprouts and whatever else catches my eye. I can find mashed sweet potatoes all the time at the TJ’s in Georgia, but here in Virginia I am told it is seasonal. Also, I know they have frozen Hatch Valley Chilies at some stores, but not at the one where I shopped today.
Cut flowers are food for my soul and I love having them in my home. Flavored soda waters are great to have on hand, for something fresh and sparkly, and I generally pick up some Kombucha when I’m at TJ’s since it is about 30 cents a bottle less expensive here. Sun dried tomatoes are another item nice to have on hand for salads and recipes.