The Mindful Eating Challenge

Mindfulness… It’s a total buzz word as of late but what does it even mean?

Mindfulness is bringing our awareness to the here and now. It’s about being fully aware of our surroundings in that particular moment in time. Here are some examples of questions you may ask yourself to become present: How deep is my breathing? What are the sounds around me? Can I release any tension I am holding onto in my bodies? 

Mindful Eating

This leads us to the topic of mindful eating. Mindful eating is about using our senses before, while, and after eating our food. For example, we can ask questions like what does the food smell like, what does it look like, what is the taste and finally what is the texture in our mouth? It’s about being aware of our hunger cues, doesn’t mean that just because its 12 noon, and we usually eat every day at 12 noon, we have to eat then. Or just because I usually practice intermittent fasting and don’t begin eating my first meal until 10 am, that I need to wait until 10 am to eat. What if our body is telling us we are hungry earlier, or later than 10 am? It’s about tuning into our body to figure what what it’s telling us, what it needs and in turn, what type of fuel we should feed it.

In the culture we currently live in, it’s totally normal to eat almost unconsciously. Most people eat at their desk while working, or eat while watching TV at home. I myself have a bad habit of eating while responding to emails. But the issue with that is we don’t get to actually enjoy the beautiful food in front of us. We don’t get to appreciate that it’s nourishing our bodies and giving us brain fuel to make it through the day. We just chew & swallow to finish the task and be able to move on to the next item on our to-do list. I mean, let’s face it, who else has finished a whole bag of popcorn or chips and thought, “oops, I wasn’t even hungry..” I know I have!

Breaking these mindless eating habits actually requires some motivation, self-compassion and practice. That’s why I have set up a quick 6-step plan on how we can steer away from these mindless eating habits and begin adopting some mindful eating habits! For the next 2 weeks, we are going to try to enjoy each meal mindfully. Here’s how:

  • Step 1: Decide if you’re actually hungry. Take a moment to figure out if emotions have triggered you to begin eating (such as feeling sad, bored or lonely). 

  • Step 2: Serve your food.

  • Step 3: Smell - Take a few deep breaths in and out before you begin eating. Smell the food and get excited about the flavors about to happen!

  • Step 4: Sight - What does the food look like? What is the most gorgeous part of the presentation? Anything in particular you’re excited to taste?

  • Step 5: Taste - Take your first bite of food, chew it for quite some time. Set your fork down. Now try to extract all of the flavors and textures. What does it actually taste like?

  • Step 6: While you enjoy the rest of your meal, think about where your food is coming from, and who may have grown your food. Think about what it’s doing for your body. For example, certain fresh organic vegetables can provide our bodies with vitamins and minerals to keep our skin glowing and our digestive system working properly.

I have created a kale and pink grapefruit salad recipe for you below. It is actually a great recipe to start with because you’ll have so many different flavors and textures to examine. I love using Natures Greens because they are pre-washed and ready to consume, making it easier for me to have some more time to practice mindful eating!

Challenge

Let’s start by applying this 6-step process of mindful eating to one meal a day, yup, just one meal (I totally get it can be overwhelming to change our habits overnight). Pick whichever meal you feel it can be the most practical to start with, and give yourself a challenge of doing it every day for 14 days. Whenever you are mindfully eating, tag me your social media posts @recipes4health & I will re-share! So who’s in?

Kale & Pink Grapefruit Salad

Serves: 2

Prep Time: 10 minutes

DIRECTIONS

Salad:

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  • 6-8 cups of Natures Green Organic Kale Greens (pre-chopped & pre washed)

  • 1 large grapefruit

  • 1 ripe avocado

  • 1/4 cup roasted pecans

  • 1/4 cup feta cheese crumbles

  • 2 tbsp dried cranberries

Dressing:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil + 1 tbsp 

  • 1-2 tbsp grapefruit juice

  • 1 tbsp ACV

  • 1 tsp dijon mustard

  • 1/2 tsp maple syrup 

  • 1/4 tsp salt

  • 1/4 tsp pepper

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Using a sharp knife, chop the kale into fine pieces and add them into a large bowl.

  2. Add 1 tbsp of olive oil to the kale and use your hands to massage all throughout the leaves. Doing this will help break down the coarseness of the kale and help it be easier to digest.

  3. Next use a sharp knife to cut and peel the grapefruit, then discard. Working over a small bowl, cut between the membranes to release the segments into a bowl. Leave the juice aside to use for the dressing. Add the grapefruit segments into the bowl of kale.

  4. Slice an avocado in half, remove the seed carefully with a knife. Slice the inside of the avocado with a knife, then scoop out the insides with a spoon. Add it to the bowl of kale.

  5. Add the pecans, feta cheese and cranberries into the bowl too. 

  6. For the dressing, add all of the ingredients into a mason jar and shake well. 

  7. Add the dressing to the bowl and toss well.


Mindful Eating

Barbecue Chicken Pizza with Mustard Greens Pesto. Rachael Hartley, RD

Barbecue Chicken Pizza with Mustard Greens Pesto. Rachael Hartley, RD

Most of us would say yes, we’re mindful eaters, because we’re aware of the things that we’re eating and we’re attempting to eat healthy, nutritional things. But being a mindful eater is more than just choosing the things that benefit our bodies and health the most. Being a mindful eater means being fully attentive to the food on the plate in front of you and being aware of your senses while eating.

Consider this: when you grabbed breakfast this morning, did you eat it on the go while wrangling children out the door on the way to school? When you had a snack at work, were you busy plugging away at a spreadsheet or reading through a report? What about dinner? We’re willing to bet that there was something there too that was pulling your full attention away from your meal.

If you were multitasking while you were eating, you were unknowingly being a mindless eater. You did not have the opportunity to sit down and savor every aspect of your food from the color and texture to the taste and the aroma. Mindful eaters bring all of their senses to the table each time they sit down for a meal.

Mindful eaters also ensure that they have a healthy appetite when it comes time to eat a snack or a meal rather than waiting until they’re famished. When you approach mealtimes this way, you’re then able to put a smaller portion on your plate and take your time eating it. You’re not trying to rapidly fill up a void in your belly and you’re about to more accurately judge how much food you will need to eat to be full.

Simply, mindful eating is about slowing down, savoring, and giving your body just what it needs rather than overindulging. It’s about giving your body time to catch up with your brain so you know when you’re full instead of eating quickly and eating more than you need without realizing until it’s too late. That full belly you experience on Thanksgiving after you had that extra helping of grandma’s homemade mac and cheese? That’s the feeling we’re talking about, and that’s a feeling that mindful eaters are able to easily avoid.

How can you become a more mindful eater? Here are a few tips to help get you started along the path of being more mindful when it comes to your snacks and meals: 

1 - It starts at the store.

Proper meal planning and prepping goes a long way towards mindfully eating! When you have all of your meals planned out and ready to go, you’re more like to cook them, gather around the table with them, and enjoy them.

2 - Serve a smaller portion.

Relax—it’s easy to go back for seconds if you are truly still hungry after the first helping, but a smaller portion allows for your body to have the time to communicate to your brain that it’s satiated. We so often pile our plates high—because most of the time, the food is delicious and we want to enjoy as much of it as possible!—rather than being conscious of how much food our body really needs to be full.

 3 - Turn off the distractions.

Set your phone down, turn the TV off, or step away from your desk. Overindulgence happens so easily when we’re not paying attention to our food and when we let our attention be split as we multitask.


What steps do you take each day to be a mindful eater? We’d love to know! Share your steps with us—post a picture or video on social media, and be sure to tag @naturesgreens and #FarmFreshGreens!

Not So Hidden Greens

At WP Rawl, we love our greens! But we know that sometimes it can be difficult to get someone to add greens into their everyday diet despite the abundant nutritional value that greens provide.

When introducing greens to your children, you want to avoid fooling them or tricking them into eating greens. It’s likely to cause mistrust. Instead, offer up dishes that incorporate greens in a way that you won’t notice a difference in taste or texture just because a green has been added. You can do this by pairing a green with a trusted favorite—you’ll be more likely to get even the pickiest eaters at the table to try a bite (or two!) without much protest.

You can also invite your children into the kitchen to help you prepare a snack or cook a meal that includes greens on the ingredient list. Not only will you be creating memories and teaching necessary life skills, but it’s an easy way to introduce new ingredients to your children. Let them feel, taste, and cook with different ingredients as a way to become more familiar with them. The more familiar they are, the more likely they are to try them and enjoy them!

Green Smoothies

Sweet Green Smoothie

Sweet Green Smoothie

Our Sweet Green Smoothie combines 1 1/2 cups of collard greens with lime juice, mango juice, orange juice, and grapes to create a sweet, flavorful smoothie. You’ll notice the collard greens in the smoothie by the bright green color, but it blends in exceptionally well with the fruit juices and grapes.

Beans & Greens Quesadilla

Put a new twist on Taco Tuesday at your house with our Beans & Greens Quesadilla. In addition to all of your favorite Mexican flavors, this quesadilla also includes a heaping handful of kale. The kale is mixed in with the black beans, corn, bell pepper, and spices, and you’ll barely notice it when you bite into the quesadilla!

Quinoa Kale Pizza Bites

Quinoa Kale Pizza Bites

Quinoa Kale Pizza Bites

Are your kids craving pizza this week? Try out our Quinoa Kale Pizza Bites dipped in marinara sauce. It’s an easy meal to cook with your children—let them mix all of the ingredients together in the mixing bowl and spoon the mixture into the muffin tin. You’ll definitely see pops of green in the pizza bites, but your kids will be too busy devouring them to realize they’re eating kale.

How do you add greens to your everyday recipes so you and your family can enjoy them without noticing that they are there? We’d love to know! Share your recipes with us on Social Media by tagging @naturesgreens and #BacktoFresh. We can’t wait to see what you all are preparing in your kitchens!

Green Banana Oat Pancakes

Green Eggs and Ham

When I was younger, my kindergarten teacher made our class green eggs and ham just like in the Dr. Seuss children's book. I remember being repulsed by the idea that my eggs were... green! Eggs shouldn't be green. After my sweet kindergarten teacher insisted that the green food tasted just like eggs, and assured us that we would like it, I decided to take a bite. Turns out, I was afraid of nothing. The green eggs and ham tasted just like... eggs and ham.

Fast forward to the present, and now I enjoy incorporating green foods into most of my meals. Having a big green salad at every meal isn't ideal, so I like to incorporate greens into my everyday meals. Most of the time, you can't even taste the greens! Not only does adding greens to your recipes give you those extra vitamins, but it also adds a pop of fun color.

Why are Greens so Important?

Greens like spinach, kale, swiss chard, and arugula are filled with essential micronutrients such as iron, vitamin K, vitamin A, vitamin C, calcium, and I could go on. It is essential to feed your body vitamins and minerals so that it can carry out normal processes of growth and development. In addition, it helps your body produce enzymes and hormones that aid in bodily functions such as digestion, detoxing, the menstruation, respiration, blood flow, and more.

I usually incorporate greens into all my meals, but breakfast. For breakfast, it's easy for me to simply grab some oatmeal with nut butter and berries. Lately, I've been getting creative in the kitchen trying to create a recipe that is packed with nutrients and also delicious.

Today, I am sharing with you a pancake recipe with hidden KALE. Just like the green eggs and ham, you can't taste the kale in this recipe. Your body will absorb the nutrients of the kale without sacrificing the taste of breakfast pancakes.

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Green Banana Oat Pancakes

Servings: 1-2

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Ingredients

1 ¾ Cup Oat Flour

1 Mashed Banana

1 tsp Baking Soda

1 Egg

1 tbsp Coconut Oil

¼ tsp Sea Salt

1 ¼ Almond Milk (or any non dairy milk)

1 cup Steamed Kale

2 tsp Matcha Powder (optional)

Directions

1.    Blend steamed kale in a blender or food processor. The kale should become a creamy consistency. Set kale aside in a bowl.

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2.    In a separate bowl, add oat flour, baking soda, salt, and matcha powder if your want your pancakes to be even more green. Mix together the ingredients.

3.    In the bowl with the kale, add the mashed banana, egg, melted coconut oil, and almond milk.  Mix ingredients together.

4.    Mix together the wet ingredients and the dry ingredients.

5.    Warm up your pan to medium heat. Add some coconut oil to the bottom of the pan to keep your pancakes from sticking. Take 1/4 of your batter and pour it onto the pan. When the top of the pancake starts creating bubbles, you know it's time to flip.

6.    Once all the pancakes are cooked, serve immediately. Add toppings such as maple syrup, strawberries, raspberries, or chocolate chips.

For more recipe ideas, visit my website gababoutit.com!


This post was sponsored by WP Rawl. All opinions are my own.

The Benefits of Dark Leafy Greens on Our Health

“Eat your greens!”

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I’m sure you’ve heard this time and time again – especially with the latest health/diet trends.  But the facts are there, you guys.  There really is something to eating dark leafy greens for your health!

When I say “dark , leafy greens”, what do I mean, exactly?  Kale, collard greens, turnip greens, mustard greens, spinach, chicory, arugula, swiss chard, etc. are all examples of nutrient powerhouses.

Now, what can they actually DO for you?  I’m glad you asked.  

·      They’re chalked full of vitamin K, which thins your blood, helping to prevent blood clots, heart attacks, and strokes.

·      They’re high in folate, beta-carotene, polyphenols, and lutein, which all act as antioxidants for the body and help to reduce risk (or slow growth of) certain types of cancer.

·      Leafy greens are full of nitrates (the good kind) that help to burn fat.  Umm, yes please!

·      They help to reduce inflammation in the body via essential fatty acids (omega-3) and phytonutrients.

·      All leafy greens contain lots of fiber, which feed good gut bacteria and help prevent colon cancer.  

·      They’re known for lowering cholesterol and triglycerides because of their fiber and healthy omega-3’s that I mentioned before.

·      They can actually provide UV protection due to carotenoids, which come from the antioxidants in the plants.  I’ll take a little extra sunscreen!

·      Leafy greens can boost your workouts because of their antioxidants, as well as helping you recover post-workout because of the same, which reduce inflammation.

 Isn’t that amazing??  Who knew that such little leaves could do SO much?!  

 Now, a lot of people think that “eating greens” has to be boring.  I beg to differ!  There are SO many ways to cook them now.  Let me name a few:

·      Sauteed in a pan sprayed/drizzled with avocado oil for 4-5 min and seasoned with lemon pepper or sea salt and pepper.

·      In salads, massaged with your hands for 30+ seconds with a little olive oil or lemon juice.

·      In soups/stews, added in about 15 min before serving.

·      As “chips” (such as kale), tossing with avocado oil and baking at 400 degrees for 10-12 min (or until crispy).

·      In wraps, tacos, etc. (after massaging for 30+ seconds).

·      Tossed into smoothies/shakes (just a handful will do!) after a workout.

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When choosing greens, I always look for fresh, preservative-free, organic (when possible) options.  Nature’s Greens is an amazing line that not only delivers the best, farm-fresh greens, but they also pre-wash them for you, which makes them super convenient for my busy schedule.

I hope you now see the AMAZING nutritional benefits of those leafy, green plants. Take advantage of them, friends!

Jayme Williams, RN, CPT, FNS, WLS

For more of my content, visit my website jaymewilliamsfitness.com!


This post is sponsored by WP Rawl. All opinions are my own.

5 Ways to Get Moving This Spring

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Are you moving as much as you should? Being physically active can improve your overall health. At times, we often hear so much about diet, but don’t realize that physical activity is just as important. Most people do not get enough physical activity, and everyone can benefit from being more active. 

According to the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, it is important to get a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week. Easier said than done right? Between work, school, family obligations, it can very difficult to designate time to get those minutes in daily. Physical activity is an essential part of a healthy lifestyle because of its many benefits such as helping to improve blood pressure, weight maintenance, regulating blood sugars and more. It’s time to better your health by moving your body. Here are 5 fun ways to stay active.

1. Invite a friend and get hiking! Hiking is such a powerful cardio workout with so many health benefits, plus it’s fun (especially when you are doing with your loved ones or friends). Hiking can build strength in your glutes, as well as build muscles in your hips and lower legs. Hiking is also a great way to enjoy nature. Research hiking trails in your location, grab somebody, and get ready for a fun and fulfilling workout that you will enjoy!

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2. Let’s Dance! Can’t dance? No worries, dancing for a workout is really all about moving your body, not catching the beat. Dance workouts make exercising more fun and less painful. What’s not to love about sweating away to your very own dance party and jamming? Dancing can be a great heart pounding, cardio workout. Pop in your favorite dance cardio video and get to it!

3. Take a class. Are you getting bored doing the same workouts? Well it’s time to switch it up! The good news is that there are so many fitness classes out there that can help you mix up your workout routine. It’s even more exciting when you are taking it with a friend. A few classes you can try are yoga, kickboxing, ZUMBA, spinning and many many more. Research some fitness classes in your local area and find one that works for you.

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4. Walk! Walking might be one of the easiest workouts you can do, if you are physically capable. It doesn’t require much effort and it goes a very long way. When you go out, aim to park your car further away from where you are going, to get in some extra steps. Call a friend or family member to go for a walk with you or to talk on the phone with you while you walk. You’ll be amazed at how quickly 30 minutes can fly by when you have someone by your side. You might even motivate each other to add more minutes. Spend most of your days at a desk? Aim to take multiple small breaks throughout the day to help you get active. You can set a timer on your phone to get up and go for a walk around the office. On the days you feel that you want something more relaxed, you can try walking.

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5. Use a fitness app. Oh yes... the digital age brings us so many cool gadgets almost everyday. Do you have a smartphone? Most likely you do, but awesome news is that now it can be a great workout companion. There are so many new fitness apps that include step-by-step instructions for different workouts from yoga, to strength training, running and more. If fitness apps are your thing, it can definitely be well worth downloading.

Whichever type of physical activity you choose to do, make sure it is fun and enjoyable! Don’t forget to stretch before and after to avoid tight muscles, drink plenty of water and consume a healthy meal or snack.

The right foods before and after exercise can boost your results. Your body burns carbohydrates for fuel, they give you the energy to power through that jog or fitness class. When you’re done, refueling with a combination of protein and carbs can help you rebuild muscle. For pre and post workout snacks and meals, visit Nature’s Greens!

This post was sponsored by WP Rawl. All thoughts and opinions are from Valerie Agyeman, RDN. For more of her work around wellness and nutrition, visit her website: http://flourishheights.com

Fueling Your Body for Fitness

Being mindful of what you put into your body can help you to meet your fitness goals faster, and it can also help you prepare for and recover from a run, a pickup game of soccer with friends, or a workout at the gym. Exercising is only half the battle of a healthy lifestyle—your diet plays an extremely important part, too. Everyone is different, so with all of this, it’s best to try and understand how your body specifically responds to different practices.

You can get 30 minutes of physical activity every day, as recommended by the Mayo Clinic, but if you’re not fueling your body with the right nutrition, you’re won’t reap all of the available benefits of a healthy lifestyle. Adding in extra time at the gym in the mornings before work or going on long walks with your family at the end of the day are great things to do, but at the end of the day, you’ve got to be eating right in addition to the physical activity.

The Revival Smoothie. 😍

The Revival Smoothie. 😍

Before you hit the gym, make a smoothie at home that’s filled with fruit and greens. The Revival smoothie created by Tasty As Fit is a perfect one to add to your workout routine. Enjoy a smoothie like this one, or any other one filled with fruits and greens, about an hour before you plan to workout. Your body will have time to digest the smoothie before you start getting your heart rate up at the gym.

Did you know that kale is a wonderful green to eat after you complete a workout? Kale can help manage inflammation after your finish exercising for the day, per the US News and World Report. Inflammation can cause stiffness, soreness, and your body’s ability to bounce back after a strenuous workout. So go ahead—toss some kale into a post-workout smoothie or add a dark leafy greens salad filled with kale to go along with your dinner for the evening.

How are you fueling your body for your workouts and your fitness goals? We’d love for you to share with us! Post a picture or video on social media, and be sure to tag @naturesgreens and #FarmFreshGreens!

What to Eat Before and After a Workout and Why

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Sure, we know that food and exercise go hand in hand, but sometimes with all of the information out there knowing what to eat before and after a workout becomes harder than the workout itself!

Everyone’s needs are a little different depending on their goals, and type of exercise, but there are a couple of nutrition guidelines when it comes to what to eat before and after a workout that will ensure you a fueled up to perform your best and replenish your muscles properly after a sweat sesh. It’s very important to take into consideration how you feel depending on what you eat before and after a workout and how it makes you feel during it. It may require some trial and error to get it right but once you know what makes you feel your best you’ll be ready to take on any workout out there!

Even as a dietitian sometimes I don’t fuel up properly or wait too long to eat after a workout and find myself not feeling so great. It happens! There will always be circumstances that prevent us from perfect execution but the bottom line is if you can roughly follow these guidelines and prepare in advance it will not only allow you to get stronger in your workouts, hep your body recover properly and take the guesswork out of what to eat before and after hitting the gym.

Pre Workout Nutrition

Carbs are key. Prior to a workout we want to make sure our bodies have enough energy, and that energy comes from carbs. Carbs are broken down in our bodies into glucose and then stored in the muscles as glycogen. We need enough carbs to replenish that glycogen store when we’re using it up during exercise. You’ll want what you have before a workout to be mostly carbs with a litte bit of protein too.

You’ll often see runners eating a plain white bagel when gearing up for a run because it’s a simple carbohydrate, which is easier to digest than let’s say a multigrain bagel with seeds (more fiber = slower to digest). Another fun fact here is that carbohydrate loading actually does not just happen the night before a race, you’re body can store carbohydrate 1-7 days in advance. Something to keep in mind if you’re a runner!

Protein is also important for muscle protein synthesis and recovery. A small amount of protein paired with the carbohydrates before a workout provides amino acids to help reduce inflammation as well as build muscle tissue.

When it comes to fat, even healthy sources of fat like avocado, nuts, and nut butter can be hard on the stomach to digest. Some people can tolerate nuts well before hitting the gym, but my recommendation is to keep consumption of this macronutrient at a minimum before the gym.

Pre-workout snack / meals ideas:

Aim for timing of consumption to be 2-3 hours before your workout. If what you’re having is more of a meal than a snack air on the side of 3 hours and if it’s getting close to workout time go for something like a banana or a granola bar.  

  • 1 slice of toast with hummus, kale and 1 slice of turkey on top

  • ½ cup carrots + ½ cup sliced peppers with 2 tbsp. hummus and 1 hard-boiled egg

  • Banana or apple slices with 1 tbsp. nut butter

  • Greek yogurt with low sugar granola + ¼ cup fruit

  • Granola bar (look for ones that have 10 grams of sugar or less if possible. Depending on the size and what’s in the bar it might be smart to have half and save half for after the workout)

  • ½ cup oatmeal with banana slices + 1 tbsp. hemp seeds

  • ½ of a wrap with turkey, spinach, tomatoes and hummus

Post Workout Nutrition

Eating after a workout is super important--your muscles are literally hungry for energy so refueling properly is crucial for replenishment, preventing muscle injury and oh yeah to keep from being hangry!

The optimal carbohydrate-to-protein ratio for this post workout nutrition is 3:1 (3 grams of carbohydrate for every 1 gram of protein). Research shows this carbohydrate-protein combination consumed within 30 minutes of exercise nearly doubles the insulin response, which results in more stored glycogen aka your body is ready and needing that energy vs. storing it as fat. This stored glycogen is then ready to fuel your next workout!

I rely on a few fool-proof snack and meals ideas that I try to always have in my fridge or in my bag so that I can refuel soon after a tough workout. Timing is also an important part of the refueling equation. Some might not be as sensitive to waiting longer to eat after a workout, but I know for me it’s key to eat within 30 minutes to an hour after a workout.

Post-workout snack / meal ideas:

Aim for timing of consumption to be within 30 minutes to an hour after a workout for the reasons stated above!  

Kale Cauliflower Power Breakfast Bowl

Kale Cauliflower Power Breakfast Bowl

  • Kale cauliflower power breakfast bowl

  • Protein smoothie: 1 cup almond milk + 1 cup kale, ½ cup blueberries, 1 tsp. freshly grated ginger, blended plus your protein powder of choice

  • Banana with 2 tbsp. nut butter and a hard-boiled egg (bananas are great before or after because of their carb content--they fuel or refuel your muscles fast!)

  • Baked salmon or chicken with brown rice or quinoa and roasted veggies

  • Kale sausage and egg muffins with toast

Hello Hydration

Staying hydrated before and after a workout is also equally as important as what you eat! Dehydration can cause muscle cramping, and overall fatigue going into a workout.

Here again, there’s no one-size-fits-all method to determining fluid needs during exercise, a good place to start is drinking about 2 cups of water 2 to 3 hours before exercise and 1 cup of water 10 to 20 minutes before working out. Being cognizant that you are working out that day and staying on top of your water intake (aka refilling a reusable water bottle a few times) will help ensure you are feeling good all throughout the activity.

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In the hours after exercise, people should aim for approximately 16 to 24 ounces of fluid for every pound (0.5 kg) of body weight lost during exercise to replenish fluids. After more intense workouts consider opting for coconut water to help replenish electrolytes like potassium and magnesium lost through sweat. These minerals are also super important for proper muscle contraction and relaxation, so if you like the taste this is a smart hydration option!


This post was sponsored by WP Rawl. All opinions are from Maggie Michalczyk, RDN.

Two of My Favorite Ways to Enjoy Fresh Greens Without Sacrificing Time

Nicole Yon, RD on her family’s cattle farm.

Nicole Yon, RD on her family’s cattle farm.

If I had to pick just a few words to describe my eating style it would be “nutritious convenience.” As a registered dietitian I am well versed in what it takes to build a satisfying and healthy plate, but given our hectic schedules on the farm - I also don’t have much time to spare for elaborate and nutritious meals. Since I’m not willing to sacrifice nutrition in the interest of time, I depend a lot on simple meals and healthy conveniences such as Nature’s Greens pre-washed Greens. 

Growing up Saturday night always meant pizza night in our house. As a child my favorite flavor was Hawaiian Pizza (ham and pineapple only!) and I enjoyed helping my dad make the dough from scratch, spread the sauce, shred the cheese and dress my own pizza before peering through the oven glass watch it cook.  

These days pizza nights looks a little different in our house, but my husband and I carry on the tradition by eating pizza almost every weekend. While I still enjoy a Hawaiian pizza every now and then, we use a few more convenience items like pre-made crusts and triple washed Nature’s Greens Kale. By making pizza at home (as opposed to grabbing take out or a frozen pizza) we can control a few more of the ingredients and a healthy version of one of our favorite foods!

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Easy Everyday Pizza

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 10 minutes

Ingredients

• 1 Personal Size Pizza Crust (Udi’s Gluten free shown)

• 3-4 tablespoons Pesto

• 1 roma tomato, thinly sliced

• 1/8 of a red onion, chopped

• 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded

• 3 to 4 ounces cooked protein of choice (shredded chicken, chicken sausage, tofu)

• 3 cups Nature’s Greens Kale Greens

• 1-2 tablespoons olive oil or pecan oil

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 375°

2. Prep veggies by slicing roma tomato, chopping red onion and massaging kale greens with oil.

3. Spread pesto sauce on pizza crust. Follow with a layer of roma tomatos, red onion, shredded mozzarella cheese, and protein of choice.

4. Top with kale greens - (if it looks like these are taking over your pizza, don’t worry, they will cook down in the oven!)

5. Bake pizza in preheated oven on a cookie sheet for 8-10 minutes.

If you’re anything like me, you might love the combination of chocolate and peanut butter and you probably hate to buy an ingredient that can be only used in one dish. After making kale pizza, I like to use my leftover kale greens in smoothies through out the week! Having pre-washed Nature’s Green’s kale makes it even easier to throw together a quick and nutritious smoothie in the mornings and my favorite ones also happens to taste like chocolate and peanut butter! 

I can often feel intimidated by recipes I see on Instagram or Pinterest that require uncommon ingredients or special powders. The truth is, you can make a nutritious smoothie with a few basic ingredients and I love making “good for you” and filling smoothies by this simple formula: 3 cups green, 2 cups of liquids, 1 cup of fruit and a few tablespoons of “extras.” Extras could include peanut butter, cocoa powder, maple syrup, ginger, turmeric, cinnamon, or honey! I find this smoothie to be a great option for busy mornings and might pair it with a few hard boiled eggs for a quick, on-the-go, protein packed breakfast!

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Back to Basics Smoothie

Prep time: 5 minutes

Ingredients

• 1 cup frozen banana slices

• 1 tablespoons peanut butter

• 3 cups kale greens

• 1 cup milk of choice

• 1 cups non-fat plain greek yogurt

• 1-2 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder

Directions

1. Combine banana, peanut butter, yogurt, milk and cocoa powder in blender until smooth.

2. Add kale greens and blend until smooth.

For MORE of Nicole’s content, follow her on Instagram! @fromfarmtolabel

This blog post was sponsored by WP Rawl and written by Nicole Yon. All thoughts and opinions are hers.

Love Your Greens!

Collard greens entering our processing lines in Pelion, SC.

Collard greens entering our processing lines in Pelion, SC.

We don’t know about you, but here at WP Rawl, we love our greens! Give us all of the dark, leafy greens—they’re what we produce the most of in our fields. What dark leafy greens do we grow specifically?

If you could see our fields during peak seasons, you would see a lot of kale. Did you know? Kale has a lot of vitamins and minerals packed into their dark green leaves. 1 cup of raw kale contains more than the daily recommended value of vitamin K, vitamin C, and vitamin A! It also contains iron, folate, omega-3s, magnesium, calcium, iron, fiber, and protein. Talk about a green that’s packed with nutrients!

While you probably have heard of or eaten Kale, chances are you might not know much about Mustard greens. Mustard greens are one of the most overlooked vegetables in the produce section, but here at WP Rawl, we love them! Like kale, they’re packed with nutrients, but most notably is that they have a high amount of vitamin K. Vitamin K has strong anti-inflammatory properties which helps to improve your cardiovascular health. For this reason, mustard greens are a very heart healthy food to include in your diet!

A leafy green that is very similar to Mustard in looks and popularity is Turnip greens. While the white root of the turnip plant tends to be the most popular part of a turnip plant to eat, the green leaves actually are the most nutritious part to add to your diet. Turnip greens are an incredible source of vitamins K, A, C, E, and B6 as well as folate, manganese, and calcium. The antioxidants found within these greens also help fight against heart disease, cancer, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, and more.

Last, but certainly not least, are Collard greens. Like with kale greens, mustard greens, and turnip greens, collard greens are also a wonderful source of nutrients that your body needs to be at it’s healthiest. However, Collard greens stand out on their own as the best green to eat to help lower your cholesterol. Best known in the South for their role at holiday dinners, Collard greens are beginning to take shape as a year round staple in diets in several regions of the country.

There are so many great reasons to love your greens! They do incredible things for our bodies and help keep us healthy and happy. How do you love your greens? Share with us on social media by tagging @naturesgreens and #FarmFreshGreens!

Diets: Ain’t Nobody Got Time for That!

We hope that everyone had a wonderful holiday season and that it’s been a good new year for you so far. The beginning of the year is always full of new beginnings, fresh starts, and plenty of goals and resolutions. Did you set any New Year’s Resolutions for the upcoming year? Our team set quite a few for ourselves: from growing more greens for you to enjoy and bringing you more tasty recipes to try out in your kitchens, we’re on a mission in 2019.

What types of resolutions did you set? If you set a goal to lose weight and become healthier by finally trying out that diet your friend keeps recommending, we have a different goal for you to consider.

Let’s face it. Most people don’t stick with their diets for a number of reasons. They can be too difficult to follow, they can limit the types of foods that you enjoy eating, and they can cause you to cook multiple meals for dinner if not everyone in your house is following the same diet. Diets can be pretty inconvenient, and nobody has time for that! Plus, we think there are better ways for you to become healthier and potentially lose weight along the way—if that is indeed something you want.

Think about shifting your goal away from weight loss through dieting, and instead focus on becoming healthier by adopting positive lifestyle habits.

Here are a few habits that you can easily incorporate into your everyday life:

  1. Focus on eating a balanced diet—filled with plenty of greens, vegetables, fruits, whole grains, protein, and more—that will leave you feeling more energized, healthier, and fulfilled.

  2. Drink plenty of water. Not only will you stay hydrated, but you’ll potentially reduce your appetite and food intake throughout the day. Start your morning with a glass and keep it going throughout the day! Tip: you should drink half of your body weight in ounces each day.

  3. Listen to your body and don’t live in guilt. Should you eat fast food everyday? Probably not. Is it okay for you to have a cheeseburger with fries every now and then because that is what you genuinely want? Absolutely. The key is to take a moment before you eat something to ask yourself if that is really what you’d like to have? If your body is telling you that it is time for leafy greens—listen! If it is telling you that it needs some chocolate, guess what? Listen! Your body is always wanting to return to balance.

  4. Add exercise into your day. Even a thirty minute walk around your neighborhood with your kids at the end of the day or a quick yoga session during your lunch hour is really beneficial.

Diets come and go, but we believe that healthy lifestyle habits can become second nature to you. Which habit do you plan on adding to your day to day life first? Share with us on social media by tagging @naturesgreens and #FarmFreshGreens!

Farm Fresh Greens

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#yourleafygreensguide

Leafy greens. You’ve heard that you should probably include them in your meals routinely, but why? What nutritional advantages do leafy greens possess and how can you best consume leafy greens?

We’re glad you asked!

This year we will explore each of the four major leafy greens we grow, one per quarter:

  • Kale greens (January-March)

  • Mustard greens (April-June)

  • Turnip greens (July-September)

  • Collard greens (October-December)

We are partnering with a Registered Dietitian each quarter of the year, and each RD will look specifically at the leafy green we are highlighting during their respective quarter. They will share exciting nutritional information about the leafy green they are researching, wellness tips, original recipes, and more!

Visit our website for more information! https://farmfreshgreens.rawl.net

#farmfreshgreens

When you buy our leafy greens, you are buying the culmination of our entire team’s work to deliver an outstanding experience for you. As your leafy greens guide, we are dedicated to getting fresh leafy greens to you with high quality, and we want to show you behind the scenes from around our entire operation so you can see exactly where your fresh produce is coming from and how it’s grown and packed.

What can you expect to see from us in 2019?

Here’s what you need to be on the lookout for throughout the year so you don’t miss out!

  • Blogs on leafy greens nutrition, recipes, and wellness

  • Instagram giveaways featuring WP Rawl swag + other special treats handpicked by our food blogger friends

  • New recipes featuring Nature’s Greens® from food bloggers every week

  • Behind the scenes videos posted on Youtube

Follow/Subscribe!

Are you following us on Instagram (@naturesgreens) and Facebook (@WPRawl)? All of the content we share on these platforms is to help you discover new ways to enjoy leafy greens and to connect you with our farming operations.

If you are not subscribed already, now is a great time to get email updates from us whenever we release new recipes, blogs, and important news! SUBSCRIBE HERE

Keeping Fresh Leafy Greens Part of Your Holidays!

During the holiday season, there is one type of leafy green in particular that is sought after by many: Collard greens. Due to a tough growing season this year in the US, we are faced with a shortage of Collard greens.

Don’t panic, friends. As your Leafy Greens Guide, we are here to tell you there are other leafy greens such as:

These three leafy greens are just as tasty and can easily be swapped out in your favorite holiday recipe. Need some recipe inspiration? We are here for you! Below are some delicious recipes from our cookbook for breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacking and dessert.

Holiday Breakfast Ideas:

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Savory Stuffed Mushrooms

Holiday Lunch + Dinner Ideas:

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Kale Chia Chocolate Truffles

We hope you enjoy trying new recipes and flavors this holiday season!

Connect with us on Instagram or Facebook and tell us your thoughts on any recipes you try.

Happy Holidays!








10 Ways to Indulge This Holiday Without Overdoing It

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This season is a time to celebrate. But, you can enjoy the holidays in a healthy balance. Here are 10 tips for indulging without overdoing it, and finding time for some wellness-driven self care. 

1. Start each day with a nutrient rich breakfast.

This important meal can set you up for all day energy, and leave you less prone to oversnacking in the evening. It can be as quick and simple as a piece of fresh fruit paired with a few hard boiled eggs and cut veggies dipped in guacamole. Or, check out the breakfast recipes on our site for options like make-ahead frittata, savory egg muffins, and overnight oats. 

2. Drink plenty of H2O.

It can be easy to forget to drink during this busy time of year. But staying well hydrated helps to regulate appetite and support overall energy and good digestive health. Keep a water bottle with you to sip throughout the day. 

3. Rate your splurge options.

There are numerous opportunities to indulge throughout the season, but some are more special than others. Before reaching for a treat, rank it on a 0-5 scale with 5 being can’t-live-without and 0 being meh. If something doesn’t rate at least a 4, chances are you won’t regret forgoing it or feel deprived.

4. Fit in veggies.

In addition to being chock full of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber, and low in calories, eating more veggies is tied to better mental wellness. That’s key during what can be a stressful season. Stock veggies with hummus for snacking, and rely on easy breezy choices at mealtimes, like: ready to eat greens dressed with balsamic vinaigrette topped with quick protein, like canned beans or salmon; fresh or frozen veggies quickly sautéed in low sodium veggie broth with minced garlic and Italian herb seasoning; fresh or frozen veggies steamed and tossed with jarred pesto. 

5. Find a little ‘you time’ each day, even if it’s just five minutes.

Go for a brisk walk, listen to a guided meditation, stretch, turn on some music, or dance! Taking a break to briefly focus on yourself can reinvigorate your spirit, and help you make intuitively healthier choices throughout the day.    

6. Imbibe strategically.

Pair every cocktail with a full glass of water. This will keep you better hydrated and slow your drinking pace. It may also help curb your calorie intake, and avert the alcohol-induced munchies.     

7. Bring some nutritious dishes to holiday parties

A veggie tray with healthy dips is always a good bet, or try our recipe for light but flavorful veggie stuffed mushroom caps. Filling up your plate with options like these can help balance out traditional, more indulgent fare.   

8. Stash better-for-you snacks in your bag for shopping excursions.

Opt for nuts, or a clean ingredient protein bar. Apart from keeping you fueled, a healthy snack can help prevent becoming overly hungry, which can lead to rebound overeating, and allow you to avoid less healthy fast food options.          

9. Slow your eating pace, especially at big holiday meals.

Try to put your utensil down between bites, take breaths, and remain mindful of both your food and your fullness level.

10. Practice gratitude.

Research shows that spending 15 minutes before bed writing down grateful sentiments improves sleep length and quality, another key wellness component this time of year. If you don’t have the chance to jot down your thoughts, simply run through them in your mind. Any time spent focused on gratitude is valuable now, and all year long. 

How do you stay balanced during the holidays? Please share your thoughts, tips, and favorite healthy recipes.  

Eat More Plants: How You Can Transition Your Lifestyle to Include More Plant Based Meals

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Shutterstock #726737797

Are you beginning to focus more on the types of food and the quality of food that you’re preparing in your home for you and your family to eat? Many people consider eliminating certain types of food from their diets or look into vegetarian and vegan lifestyles without realizing that there’s another option out there to pursue.

What is a plant based lifestyle?

A plant based diet, which is more of a lifestyle than a “diet,” could be a great option for you and your family to consider. It offers plenty of flexibility while still striving to incorporate healthy, minimally processed foods into your diet. According to Healthline.com, to eat plant based means that you are:

  • Emphasizing whole foods and decreasing the number of processed foods

  • Limiting or avoiding animal productsFocusing on plants including vegetables, fruits, whole grains, legumes, seeds, and nuts

  • Excluding refined foods such as added sugars, white flour, and processed oils

Not only are you improving your health and helping to reduce the risk or symptoms of several chronic diseases with a plant based diet, but you have the opportunity to choose exactly where the food you choose to consume comes from. At WP Rawl, we believe in supporting local farmers and doing so by partnering with them to help grow fresh veggies, as well as buying their products for our own families to enjoy. 

With weekly meal planning and meal prepping, transitioning to a plant based lifestyle is an easy transition to make. In the recipe section of our website, you can find an abundance of delicious recipes that you can easily work into you and your family’s day. Two such recipes that are great for this time of year? Our Pumpkin Spice Overnight Oats and our Super Greens Soup.


Pumpkin Spice Overnight Oats

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Our Pumpkin Spice Overnight Oats (link to recipe once it is live on website) are a delicious addition to your morning breakfast routine this time of year. You can skip the Pumpkin Spice Latte and fulfill your pumpkin-craving with a more natural, plant-based choice in the morning. These overnight oats include rolled oats, pure maple syrup, ginger, cinnamon, canned pumpkin, chopped kale, and roasted pumpkin seeds to create a delicious, quick breakfast for you. 

The best part? You can make these oats ahead of time so that they’re easy to grab and go in the morning.


Super Greens Soup

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If you want to be sure that you’re sticking to your plant based diet, skip the canned soup aisle at the grocery store and pick up ingredients instead to make your own savory soup. Our Super Greens Soup (link to recipe once it is live on website) is delicious, full of great nutrition, and comes together easily on a weeknight in less than 30 minutes.

We want to see how you’re incorporating a plant based diet into your life! Take a picture of you shopping for your plant based ingredients or of your meal, and share it on social media using the hashtags #backtofresh and #naturesgreens. We’d love to see what kinds of recipes that you’re cooking up in your kitchen!

Follow us on Instagram for more recipes and behind the scenes on the farm!

Eat This Not That - No Preservatives

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Shutterstock #750161494

When you’re walking down the aisles of the grocery store with your grocery shopping list in hand, do you stop to think about what you’re adding into your cart before you toss it in? Do you take the time to read the ingredients on the prepackaged food products that you’re planning to purchase? The next time that you’re in the store—take a minute to read through the ingredients printed on the outside of the package. You may find that there are more things found in your food than you previously thought!

You can find additives like MSG, high-fructose corn syrup, and trans fat as well as a number of preservatives.

What are preservatives?

According to www.chemicalsafetyfacts.org, the term “preservatives” refers to the functional name for a wide variety of compounds that help slow or prevent bacterial growth in a wide range of products, including foods. They help prevent your food from spoiling on the shelf in the grocery store and they also help prevent your food from becoming contaminated. Preservatives can be both natural or man-made, synthetic chemicals. Now more than ever, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) closely regulates the use of preservatives in foods and is continuously researching them to ensure they are safe for our consumption.

Why should you eat foods that have no preservatives in them?

While approved by the FDA, preservatives have been linked to asthma-related sensitivities and to allergic reactions in some cases according to Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America. Some preservatives, even those labeled as General Recognized as Safe by the FDA, have the potential to become carcinogens, which can cause cancer, when digested.

How can you incorporate preservative-free foods in to your daily lifestyle and into your weekly meal plan?

The easiest and best way to ensure that you’re eating food with no preservatives in it is to prepare and cook your meals at home using fresh or organic ingredients. For any food that you eat that comes pre-packaged, make sure that you read the ingredients list to see what is included the food. Do you see things like sodium nitrate, sulfites, or sodium benzoate? These are three preservatives commonly found in pre-packed foods in the grocery store. At WP Rawl, we believe in eating as many meals preservative free as possible. On our website, you can find an abundance of recipes that use fresh ingredients and ingredients that are free from additives and preservatives. This month, we’re highlighting two of our newest recipes for you:

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Kale and Lentil Hummus

What You Do:

1. In a blender or food processor, puree half cup of lentils with olive oil, garlic, lemon juice, Italian seasoning, black pepper, and balsamic vinegar until smooth.

2. Gently fold in whole lentils, kale, and freshly chopped basil leaves into lentil mixture.

3. Refrigerate and serve with celery and baby carrots.

Skip picking up a container of hummus in the grocery store and instead, pick up the ingredients to make your own hummus at home. You’ll end up with the freshest hummus possible and also one that’s free of preservatives that are included to extend the shelf life of the hummus at the store.

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Vegan Kale Nicoise Salad

What you do:

1. In a small bowl whisk together olive oil, vinegar, lemon juice, Dijon, garlic, pepper, salt, and half of dried parsley. Set aside.

2. Place kale in salad bowl. Top with sliced potatoes, green beans, chickpeas, and olives.

3. Garnish with remaining parsley, and lemon.

4. Serve dressing on the side.

This salad recipe not only includes instructions for putting together the salad, but it includes instructions for making your own salad dressing. By making the salad dressing yourself, you’re ensuring that you’re not adding anything to your healthy meal that includes a preservative.


We want to see how you’re eating preservative-free! Take a picture of you preparing your meal or of the final product and share it on social media, using the hashtags #backtofresh and #naturesgreens. We’d love to see what kinds of recipes that you’re cooking up in your kitchen!

What Does "Clean Eating" Mean?

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Shutterstock #631739033

The first time I heard the word ‘clean’ in relation to food was back in the mid 1990’s. Supermarkets noticed that customers were beginning to look beyond info like calories, and towards ingredient lists. Health conscious shoppers were starting to pay attention to how foods were made, and exactly what they were made from. As a result, health food stores—which stocked fresh foods and simple ingredient products—were attracting more and more consumers, and traditional grocers took note.

Fast forward to today, and clean eating has gone mainstream, fostered by people from all walks of life, who want to feel good about what they’re putting in their bodies. This includes moms, who want the healthiest, most nourishing food for their children; millennials, who value natural living; and older adults who are motivated to maintain wellness and support longevity.  

The basic principle of clean eating is to let ingredients guide you. While it’s not realistic to never eat anything that comes out of a jar, box, or bag, it’s important to choose packaged foods with all natural, recognizable ingredients. For example, chickpeas from a can would be considered ‘clean’ if the only ingredients are chickpeas, water, and sea salt. The same is true for bagged greens with the only ingredient being kale, or frozen blueberries with no additional ingredients.

The idea is to slash your exposure to artificial additives and chemicals used in highly processed foods, as fillers, preservatives, flavor enhancers, colors, and the like. Recent research has shown that exposure to these man-made ingredients can harm health, from taxing immunity, to fueling inflammation, and possibly even contributing to obesity.     

But clean eating is also about how the foods we buy impact the health of the planet, and our ability to support an eco-friendly and sustainable food supply.  All of these vital issues are why clean eating is not a trend, but rather an important consumer movement.  

In addition to seeking out foods with ingredients you easily recognize, clean eating involves putting them together to make nutrient-packed meals and snacks. Some simple swaps to trade processed fare for fresh, clean food include: eating oats or a smoothie made with fruits and veggies for breakfast instead of a muffin or danish; snacking on nuts and fruit or veggies and hummus rather than chips; or whipping up a veggie-packed stir fry instead of microwaving a frozen entrée.

There are dozens of tasty recipes on www.rawl.net to guide you, and you’ll notice that many use simple, all natural ingredients—like extra virgin olive oil instead of margarine, and whole quinoa or beans in place of refined starches. That’s a big part of our Back to Fresh philosophy.

Tell us about the clean eating changes you’ve made and your favorite whole food-based recipes and meals in the comments or on social media @naturesgreens!

What to Expect When You Drive with WP Rawl

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How much do you pay per mile?

Starting pay is $0.46/mile with sign on bonus.

Where do you run?

We deliver to most major metro areas in the eastern half of the United States.

Do you have home time? How long will I be on the road?

On average, you can expect to be on the road an average of 3-5 days. Home every weekend or every other weekend.

What kind of trucks do you have?

Freightliners—fully equipped. Standard and Automatic available, years 2010-2018.

What benefits do you have?

We offer medical, dental, vision, and life. You will also be eligible for the 401k program where we offer a company match up to 4%.

Are your deliveries live unloads, or are they drop-and-hook?

Due to the nature of our product ( produce ) our outbound loads are live unloads.  Delivery dwell times can at times be frustrating, but we ask that you contact us when delayed so we can work with customer service to get you moving.  Inbound loads coming back to Pelion are not live unloads, and you are simply asked to top off the reefer fuel tank and then drop trailer on the yard.  Many of our backhauls delivering to consignees other than WP Rawl are live unloads.  We are consistently working on establishing a greater number of backhauls that are drop and hook.

Do you offer dedicated lanes?

Yes, we do.  Roughly 65% of our outbound loads shipped are based on consistent lanes.  We must always adapt to the needs of the business, but remain committed as possible to the dedicated lane structure.  Running a consistent lane allows a driver to establish a relationship with the customer.  That relationship then creates an environment which tends to lessen the time spent at the DC during the delivery.

Fill Your Child’s Lunchbox this Fall with Healthy, Nutritious Meals

Children across the country have traded in their bathing suits and beach towels for book bags and notebooks—the summer is over and a new school year has begun. With it comes new classes, new teachers, new lessons to be learned, and new lunchboxes to be filled with nutritious meals and snacks for your child to enjoy throughout the school day.

Making sure that your child is well-fed during the school day is extremely important to their academic success. If they’re eating regular, healthy meals then they are more likely to be well-rested, more attentive, and will likely retain more information from their classes each day. Packing a good lunch, or helping your child pack his or her own, is one of the very best ways that you can help them be successful in school.

Instead of relying on your child to make health-conscious decisions in the lunch line in the cafeteria each day at school, send a healthy, delicious, and nutritious meal with them in their lunchbox to refuel with in the middle of the day. We’ve pulled together two different lunch ideas that we know your kids will love. Plus, you’ll love knowing that they’re getting the proper nutrition that they need to make it through the school day! 

Four Food Groups Kid’s Lunch

For a lunch that packs in as many different food groups as possible, check out our Four Food Groups Kid’s Lunch. Your child will devour this appetizing lunch that includes an avocado, kale, hard boiled eggs, red bell pepper, and a seedless tangerine. It’s a good variety of food that’s easy to eat in the lunchroom and is filling enough to keep your child from being hungry in the afternoon.

Superfood Collard Roll-Ups

Our Superfood Collard Roll-Ups are easy to make, easy to pack in a lunch, and easy for your child to grab and eat for lunch! They’re full of all kinds of superfoods to keep your child’s mind focused throughout the school day and they’re delicious enough that we know they’ll eat them up!

What are you preparing for your children for lunch this school year to help them stay well-fed throughout the school day? We’d love to see a peek inside of your child’s lunchbox! Take a photo and share it on social media with us by tagging us (@naturesgreens) and by using the hashtag #backtofresh.

Family Meal Ideas for All Times of Day

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Shutterstock #1120735544

Throughout your pregnancy, we know that you did an outstanding job of eating the freshest, most nutritious foods to supply your growing baby with the best nutrition possible. But providing your child the best nutrition possible doesn’t stop once they’re born! As soon as they’re able to eat table food, it’s time to focus back in on what should be included in their diet to help them grow healthy and strong. 

Getting your child to eat what’s best for them—instead of the snack foods they see their friends eating—can be a challenge. We know that kids can be stubborn and incredibly selective with the foods that they choose to eat. However, we know a few tricks to adding in nutrient-rich vegetables and greens into your child’s meals without them noticing.

Our number one tip? Add in an extra veggie or two into a meal that they already love. They may not notice the addition, or they may absolutely love the new flavor. Either way, they’re getting the nutrition that their growing body needs! Here are our recipe suggestions that we know even the pickiest eater will enjoy:

Breakfast

With our Kale & Sausage Egg Muffins, you can help your kids start their day off right with a nutritious breakfast! This combination of eggs, all-natural chicken sausage, kale, and bell peppers is a tasty blend that we know your kids will gobble up in the mornings.

Lunch

Does your child love fruit? These Turkey Avocado Roll-Ups will satisfy their fruit craving with the inclusion of strawberries, but will also pack a nutritious punch with the addition of our Nature’s Greens collards and avocado. They’re easy for little hands to pick up to eat, and they’re easy to throw in a lunch box for your older kids to enjoy during the school day.

Snack

When you’re settling down for a quiet afternoon with your child’s favorite movie, our Sweet Greens and Seeds Popcorn snack is a healthy way to tide their hunger over until dinner time. It’s a crunchy, filling snack that won’t have your children asking for extra butter on top!

Dinner

Put a spin on your weekly Taco Tuesday, and introduce your family to these delicious Vegetarian Tacos.They can enjoy a healthier version of their favorite Mexican dish—the collards, avocado, cilantro, tomatoes, black beans, and corn make a great substitute for ground beef.