The other day I was putting the second tablespoon of butter on my second piece of toast when I got a weird glance from my boyfriend as he said with surprise - "𝐈'𝐯𝐞 𝐧𝐞𝐯𝐞𝐫 𝐬𝐞𝐞𝐧 𝐚𝐧𝐲𝐨𝐧𝐞 𝐞𝐚𝐭 𝐬𝐨 𝐦𝐮𝐜𝐡 𝐛𝐮𝐭𝐭𝐞𝐫!"
Years ago, I would have felt embarrassed or at the very least uncomfortable with that comment, but not anymore.
My answer to that comment was – “𝐈 𝐤𝐧𝐨𝐰, 𝐫𝐢𝐠𝐡𝐭? That’s because most people don’t know the right tricks on how to eat it for their health!”
Most people who struggle with food and weight think this way:
I am going to be healthy!
Breakfast: Fruit or fat free yogurt
Midnight snack: large pizza, mac and cheese, a gallon of ice cream!
Does that sound familiar?
What if I told you that if you let yourself have butter, carbs and some healthy sugars in the morning you would not only have more energy for the day, but you would feel so satisfied physically and emotionally that at the end of the day you wouldn't have those cravings!
And since you had those foods in the first part of day, chances are, your body will get to burn them before you go to bed, so you can have a more restful sleep!
I am not advocating having a pizza and ice cream for breakfast, BUT if you know that you will have them in the evening, why not switch up the timing and have them in the morning? Try and see how you feel.
You may be surprised that by allowing yourself to have anything you want, your body will naturally stop when it's full and will let you know what foods make it feel the best.
For me sometimes, it's one or two pieces of gluten-free toast, kerry gold butter, peach jam and a few fresh berries. Other times it's a smoothie with almond butter, greens, banana, fruit and superfoods. When it's cold outside, I may have an oat bran cooked with almond milk and topped with butter. It all varies.
The main point is allowing yourself to have those foods in the morning and satisfying the cravings for those food groups. Then breezing through the day knowing that you are worthy of having good, yummy food and don't need to rebel or eat junk because you are not restricting yourself.
How does that concept feel to you? Please share with me!
Q: I can't fall asleep - I keep thinking of past experiences and pain... actually I think a lot in general, just my mind racing. This makes me feel exhausted, but not physically, so I can't sleep. What can I do to help that?
A: I am sorry to hear this and you are not alone. But it doesn't have to be this way. Here are my top 2 tips to getting your ZZZ's:
1. Every night, about one hour before going to bed, I take 2 capsules of Magnesium Breakthrough by Bioptimizers. This particular supplement has 7 types of magnesium that helps me relax mentally and physically. I even measured my sleep and it's much better when I take magnesium, as it is one of the most missing minerals in our diets. They do have a money back guarantee and coupon code AlinaZ can save you extra $.
2. Then, about 15 minutes before I want to fall asleep, I take out my gratitude journal and write 5 things that I am grateful for that day. I've had this journal from the photo above for 10 years now and write in it every night (the shell stays and I just get new pages every New Year) I actually keep all of my journal inserts and love to read them and reflect on my past experiences and how I processed them.
Here are my tips on gratitude journaling:
There are actually two types of gratitude - regular and radical.
Regular Gratitude is when you write about good things that happened that day - the weather was wonderful, I am grateful for my health, I am grateful for my supportive parents, I went out for drinks with my BFF and we got to connect, I love my dog... etc...
Basically, you go through your day and look for the goodness in it. Even if the day was shitty, you can still find good things - like your fingers, your eyes, roof over your head...
By doing this, you help reprogram your brain and then can fall asleep feeling happier and more relaxed.
Radical Gratitude is a little harder, well, actually a lot. You have to be grateful for all the shitty things... Here is how I did it: I would give gratitude for being angry that my dog died, I would repeat that I was grateful for feeling sad about a break up, etc.
This might sound like a crazy thing to do, but magic happens after this torrential emotional storm - you see the rainbow!
Once you really feel those feelings, your mind starts to come up with reasons why they are good. For example, your mind starts to be grateful for anger and ends up being grateful for your open heart that loved so deeply and had so much joy for an extended period of time. And then that joy pours all over you and you start smiling and feeling gratitude for the goodness that you did have.
I invite you to buy a journal that you will cherish and treasure, preferably one that has calendar pages so you can write about each particular day and then reference it later, remembering what happened when.
Try this for a few days, weeks and see how much better you feel. After all, it's not that happy people are grateful, it's that grateful people are happy.
With lot of love and gratitude to you,
Q: Alina, I want a healthy body and a happy life and have been doing so much work to achieve that, but sometimes it feels that happiness and health are just not for me. Honestly, I don't feel that I fully deserve it... Any advice?
A: I get it. All of us at some point don't fully feel we deserve all the joy in the world. But the truth is that we DO! I teamed up with coach Ally Jewel to talk about just that for you and have Ally help. Check out this video and definitely reach out to Ally at AllyJewel.com and to learn about her FREE Webinars. She is amazing!
Q: Alina, I absolutely love buying Acai bowls when I am on vacations, but there is only one place near my house that sells them and they are too expensive. Do you have any ideas on how to make it easy and on the budget? I see Acai packets at the store and they are so expensive too!!
A: I love Acai bowls too and completely get how you feel. I have tried many recipes (part of my hard job, I know, ha!) and this is my absolute favorite. Check out the recipe and the video below.
You will need:
Q: Alina, I know you have been a private chef for many years and are very successful and known. I want to start my own private chef business too, but it's so intimidating, I don't know where to even begin. What are your tips?
A: Thank you. I am very grateful to be a private chef for 11 years now and it has been the most rewarding job. To answer your question I teamed up with Holly Verbeck, owner of a private chef staffing company, and together we share our tips for creating a private chef business as well as what you need to know when hiring one.
Q: Alina, can you share some easy ways to do a detox? I don't think I can do just juices or water, which I hear can be great. Do you have any ideas for things that are easier to make than a juice, maybe less expensive too? And also, I don't like cold foods too much. Anything you can do that's warm or hot?
A: Great questions and I have 3 recipes I can share that are eAZy to make and can satisfy your cravings for hot, cold and room temperature treats.
Q: Alina, I love rice, but I hear that it can make you fat because it has so many carbs and starch. It that true? What kind of rice is the best? I don't love brown rice or cauliflower rice and love white rice, but how can I eat it?
A: I am with you! I don't love brown rice to be honest and plain cauliflower rice is not my favorite either. But I figured out a solution and sharing this in the video.
Q: Alina, can you give me a recipe for an easy, quick, healthy and yummy dinner I can make for my family and not have to do much work? Also, I want something that has everything and isn't too low carb, so I am satisfied after. Specifically, can you share a recipe with potatoes.
A: Yey, of course! I LOVE creating recipes that help people have better lives, so here is one! I make a similar recipe for my clients and they love it. I hope you do as well.
Q: Alina, I have been reading a lot about the danger that bees are in and therefore our planet, so what can I personally do to help save the bees?
A: Yes, bees are definitely in danger but there are a few things each one of us can do and together we can make a big difference!
In this new podcast and video I share what I personally do to help our cause.
1. Go organic - with fruits, veggies, grains and meat. Bees are dying due to chemicals, herbacides and pesticides.
Q: Alina, I know you are all about green juices and healthy living, but I can't give up alcohol. Or actually, I don't want to give it up. Ha! Any advice on how I can keep it and still feel pretty good?
A: Great question! And if you know me in a social setting, you'd know that I am a big fan of sparkling wines and enjoy them every week or so.
Why ask me?
- After many challenges and different crazy life experiences I am living my dream life and since my friends say I am pretty wisdomous and I think I am a little bit funny too, I want to share my life approach with you so you can live the life you love as well.
Here is a little bit about me:
- I am a creator of #1 Best Diet as selected by Harpers Baazar Magazine
- I started my career in the corporate world and didn't even know how to peel a shallot
- I have been a chef for celebrities for over 10 years
- I have a realistic approach to food and life
- I have a great relationship with food and can even let chocolate go bad because I simply forget I have it at home (something I wasn't able to do 10 years ago)
- I eat carbs whenever I feel like it without any guilt
- I used to hate to cook and now absolutely love being a private chef and a food relationship coach
- I wear whatever clothes I desire no matter what everyone is wearing or thinking
- I am in good shape and my body’s biological age is 13 years younger than the one in my passport
- I have experience being super poor, super wealthy and in between
- I’ve worked in corporate world and am now an entrepreneur
- I was married and divorced
- I used to cry going to work because I was so miserable with my boss
- I’ve had an emotional eating disorder
- I moved from Russia to USA alone at the age of 15
- I’ve lived in Russia, Europe and on both coasts of USA
- I have been super skinny and overweight
- I have been insecure and unhappy with reasons and secure and happy for no reason
- I used to wear glasses and healed my eyes with the power of thought and exercises
- I created "Couture Nutrition®" so you can have tailor-made solutions for your body and soul
- My brain usually comes up with jokes to soften stressful situations
- I think color coordination, sparkles and rainbows are underused