Dairy free hot chocolate and other warming winter drinks

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Enjoying the first snow of the year with my bestie Marina, post brunch at Cafe Cluny in NYC! :)

Winter is upon us, and to keep itself balanced, your body is most likely craving cooked foods as opposed to raw and warm liquids instead of iced. That’s because just as you change your clothes and your activities for the seasons, so too should you alter your diet to suit what your body wants in the cold weather. Right now I’m constantly making herbal teas like chamomile, mint and ginger, which are not only super comforting and warming, but are also hydrating, caffeine free and rich in anti-inflammatory antioxidants. Herbal tea is also really good for digestion, so I’ll reach for some after a big meal, and I love “nighty night” tea to wind down before bed.

Apart from my herbal tea, which I just add hot water to and maybe a splash of unsweetened almond, hemp or coconut milk, sometimes I want something a little more fun or filling. Instead of buying a drink at a coffee shop that might have dairy, a ton of sugar and mystery ingredients, try making one of these simple, dairy free and gluten free drinks at home that are still super yummy!

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Underrated restaurant: Lavagna

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The seared scallops in parsnip puree with pancetta...amazing. 

I can’t think about Lavagna without getting hungry. It’s so classic Italian and yet so refreshingly delicious that I can’t stay away from it. And better yet, it’s unassuming, under the radar, and surprisingly well priced – three qualities a person can learn to covet in New York City.

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Plants are smarter than you think (and why you should care)

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Why that’s so difficult for us to accept – and why we should give them a second look.

 

In an essay for The New Yorker entitled “The Intelligent Plant,” food writer Michael Pollan explored the evidence that plants exhibit intelligent behavior, and the scientific community’s debate over accepting it. Most plant scientists seem to accept that plants exhibit intelligent behavior, such as remembering events, knowing their position in relation to other objects, hearing, communicating with and sharing nutrients with relatives, and in general making “decisions” based on the complex set of information they sense from the environment around them. (For example, plants will “reroute” their root growth away from an obstacle even before they reach it.) What’s more abrasive for scientists than accepting the evidence, Pollan argues, is grappling with how to interpret it, and what it means about how we label plants. Maybe even more disturbing though, are the questions plant intelligence bring up in terms of how we label ourselves in relation to the world around us.

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Is a computer designing your food?

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Computer generated DNA may already be in our food system.

Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs), in which a gene from one organism is inserted into another, have been a part of the American food system since 1996. New on the scene is a technology called synthetic biology (synbio for short) that takes genetic engineering to the next level.

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Easy brussels sprouts with bacon, mushroom and onion

 

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As the weather gets colder, it’s so comforting and satisfying to cook some of your veggies, since your body may be craving the warmth to balance out any raw vegetables and fruits. Brussels sprouts are truly misunderstood because they are actually one of the most delicious vegetables out there!

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My healthy lifestyle – why it’s sustainable for me

After a workout at Barry's Bootcamp!

After a workout at Barry’s Boot camp!

People tell me all that time that I eat super healthy and I’m really strict about it. But that’s not my perception about the way I eat – I think I’m eating whatever I want and splurging on treats all the time. The key here is perception – which foods you view as desirable and why.

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