Is Sugar as Addictive as Cocaine? What Sciene Has Proven

The Truth About Sugar

For those of you who know me personally, you are aware that I have been struggling with a chronic disease for over 10 years - Lupus. On top of Lupus I have developed nerve issues within the brain stem and sever vision loss. So what does sugar have to do with my illness? Honestly, I am not sure. However, what I am sure of is while our doctors are experts in their fields most of them have very little knowledge of nutrition which is now linked to many chronic illnesses. Recently I ran across an amazing Internal Medicine Specialist in Los Angeles who focuses on the power of nutrition, Dr. Amy Lee . I want to share one of her latest blogs on the Truth about Sugar: If you want to read her original blog with footnotes on research studies and resources, I have included it at the bottom.

I find this research alarming and question how the food industry is allowed to package toxins in almost every food without warning the consumers of the danger
Left: Brain on Sugar Right: Brain on Cocaine

Left: Brain on Sugar Right: Brain on Cocaine

Sweetened to Death: Exposing Sugar for What it Truly is:

What you don’t know IS hurting you… and I don’t just mean weight problems. I mean chronic disease. I mean a whole generation dying younger than their parents for the first time in modern history.(1) If you were ever looking for a single smoking gun for obesity and health problems, this is it; I’m talking about sugar. And you’re about to learn how to dodge the bullet and come out on top.

  • Poison.

  • Addictive substance.

  • Alcohol without the buzz.

  • Worse than cocaine.

  • The reason we can’t stop eating.

  • The culprit behind the chronic disease epidemic of our times.

These are just a few of the things it’s been called.

And that’s not by extremists or fanatics… but by some of the most influential and respected medical experts on the planet.

But you know it as sugar.

it behaves in your body like both cocaine and alcohol. (It does this in your children’s bodies, too.)

And right now, we’re all eating it in unprecedented amounts, often without even knowing it.5,6

And it’s doing far worse things in our bodies than just making us fat… though it’s definitely doing that, too.

Sugar is killing people. And I’ll prove it in this article.

I’ll show you how it managed to dominate your diet and how unnatural it actually is.

I’ll show you how it behaves in your body like both cocaine and alcohol. (It does this in your children’s bodies, too.)

I’ll also show you how to overcome the need for it. It’s very doable… and very necessary.

And no, this doesn’t mean you can’t have anything sweet. Trust me on this. I’ll explain everything.

Really quickly, though… Before I get down and dirty on sugar, let me address something a few people have asked me about the articles I’ve been writing lately: “No, She isn’t Selling anything in this article”  In today’s post, I make quite a few references to the work of two pioneering doctors: Robert Lustig and John Yudkin.

Both are complete strangers to me personally and professionally. (Yudkin, in fact, died in 1995.) However, I’ve spent a great deal of time looking at their work… and now, I want to show you some of the incredible things they’ve uncovered.

So, let’s get started.

April 1973.

Senator George McGovern was presiding over the Senate Select Committee on Nutrition and Human Needs. This was the Committee’s first meeting on diet and disease

Being questioned by McGovern was Dr. John Yudkin, a distinctly mild-mannered English physiologist. Yudkin had spent most of his career as one of the most respected nutritionists in Europe.8

However, just a couple of years prior, he’d retired to write a controversial book titled Pure White and Deadly: The Problem of Sugar.9 In it, he proposed that sugar — not fat — caused obesity, heart disease, and diabetes.10 This flew right in the face of the popular low-fat diet advice of the time.

Are you saying that you don’t think a high fat intake produces the high cholesterol count? Or are you even saying that a person with a high cholesterol count is not in great danger?

After Yudkin explained his sugar theory to the Committee, Senator McGovern, in utter disbelief, asked:

Yudkin responded in his usual polite, precise manner:

“If we are talking about the general population, I believe both those things that you say.”

Yudkin went on to insist that cutting dietary fat was not the answer to the growing public health concerns. But McGovern, unable to accept this, responded:

“That’s exactly the opposite of what my doctor told me.” 

And after the hearing, things went straight downhill for Yudkin. He was shut out of international nutrition conferences, and several prominent scientists who supported the the low-fat theory publicly blasted him.14

One of these scientists was Ancel Keys, the most famous nutritionist in America. He published a scathing critique of Yudkin, calling his research “propaganda.

Scientists everywhere then began to distance themselves from Yudkin and his theories. Almost overnight, he went from being England’s premier nutritionist to being a complete outsider.

After all, he’d contradicted the establishment. Right or wrong, he had to pay the price. And no one else wanted to end up like him.

Sheldon Reiser, another prominent nutritionist of the day, later recalled:

“Yudkin was so discredited. He was ridiculed in a way. And anybody else who said something bad about sucrose (sugar), they’d say, ‘He’s just like Yudkin.’”

By the time Yudkin died in 1995, his book was out of print, and he had faded largely into obscurity.18

Meanwhile, the low-fat diet advice of Keys and his colleagues became mainstream and was treated as gospel, giving rise to dangerous U.S. Government health recommendations.

The food industry responded with sugary low-fat and fat-free foods. The American public responded with growing waistlines and declining health.

In fact, it wasn’t until 36 years later that everyone finally started to realize that Yudkin had been right all along. And it was largely thanks to a prominent endocrinologist named Robert Lustig.

And this brings us to…

May 2009.

“Am I debunking?”

Professor Robert Lustig was just over a half an hour into a lecture on sugar at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). A charming public speaker, he’d gotten a few laughs from the crowd over the past 30 minutes. But now, the lecture hall was dead silent.

“Let’s keep going.”

UCSF was one of the top-ranked medical schools in the world.29 And Lustig, its star pediatric endocrinologist, had just steamrolled over the past 30 years of undisputed nutrition guidelines. He was going against the grain with a vengeance.

You see, most nutrition advice had been based on Ancel Keys’ legendary Seven Countries Study — the one that landed him on the cover of Time Magazine.31 And Lustig had just spent the past several minutes pointing out flaw after flaw in that study’s science.

And this was only a third of the way in. The lecture was almost 90 minutes long. Lustig was just getting warmed up.

He spent the next hour using a mountain of research to thoroughly make the case for sugar being most damaging toxin of our time.

Two months later, UCSF posted a video of the lecture on YouTube, and it promptly went viral. To date, it has more than 6.4 million views.

Lustig had clearly struck a nerve. People were tired of being fat and sick. The nutrition advice they’d gotten their whole lives hadn’t been working at all.

In the aftermath, several New York Times Bestsellers emerged highlighting the dangers of sugar.33,34,35 Articles on the topic appeared in multiple newspapers and journals.36,37,38,39 News programs like 60 Minutes did stories on it.

Not to mention, Yudkin’s book — Pure White and Deadly — was re-released to a more welcoming public.41 After all, Lustig had made several references to it in the lecture.

The tides had finally shifted. Sugar — in all its forms, including high-fructose corn syrup — was now being called out for the poison it was.

And on that note, it’s about time we got into the nitty-gritty of sugar’s toxicity.


Lately, I’ve heard many people say, “Cane sugar is natural. How can it be poisonous?”

Red kidney beans are natural, too. Yet, as the FDA’s own Bad Bug Book points out, eating just five of them raw can land you in the hospital.

Natural doesn’t mean healthy. Most toxins are natural. Cyanide is perfectly natural.

And I should also point out that sugar manufacturing starts with this:

What’s natural about a man-made process that turns dirty sticks into sweet, paper-white, granulated crystals?

The truth is that it’s an extensive operation that involves multiple rounds of high-temperature treatment, evaporation, filtering, and spinning. Not to mention, industrial chemicals like sulfur dioxide are bubbled through the sugar to bleach it.

Long story short: You won’t find this stuff anywhere in nature.

And yet you’re likely eating it at every meal.

However, as bad as this all sounds, simply being unnatural isn’t what makes sugar so harmful. You’re about to find out what is, though. Read on.

The devil’s in the details.

I’ll get right to it. There’s one thing above all else that makes sugar poisonous. And that thing is fructose.

You see, sugar, otherwise known as sucrose, is 50% glucose and 50% fructose. Fructose is the sweetest part of sugar. It’s the thing that makes your favorite candy irresistible.

And it’s not just in sucrose. Fructose is highly present in high-fructose corn syrup (55%), agave syrup/nectar (84%), honey (50%), and any other syrup/added sugar you can think of.

And why is fructose so bad?

Well, unlike glucose, which is mostly broken down by insulin, fructose is 100% processed by the liver. This is very similar to how alcohol behaves in the body.  In the process, the following things happen:

·        Fat deposits in your liver increase, which ultimately leads to non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.52 (Hint: It’s essentially the same effect as alcoholic liver disease.

·        Insulin resistance increases, which makes your pancreas start producing way too much insulin. This shortchanges your brain’s ability to read signals that you’re full, causing you to overeat.54,55 It also leads to Type II Diabetes.

·        The insulin resistance elevates insulin-like growth factor (IGF), which can dramatically increase your risk for multiple types of cancer.

·        The fats in your blood rise out of proportion, skyrocketing Pattern B LDL — the worst cholesterol in human nutrition. This condition is known as dyslipidemia, and it’s a MAJOR marker for heart disease.

·        Uric acid, a byproduct of fructose metabolism, rises in your blood. This cranks up your blood pressure (hypertension). It also increases your risk for developing gout.

And here’s something that will really shock you…

30% of the fructose you consume becomes fat in your body.

Yep, you read that right. 30%. And that’s compared to around 2% of glucose (think potatoes and rice) turning into fat.

So, take a look at that sugar cube next time you want to drop it into your coffee. You can actually see the portion of it that will become fat inside you.

And there’s another feature of fructose that makes all of this much, much worse…

Sweet Cocaine?

Perhaps the most insidious part about sugar is how hard it is to stop eating it. Sugar is, in fact, genuinely addictive.

And much of this addictiveness has to do with reward signals in your brain — specifically, the sweet reward, which is supplied directly by fructose.

The effect is so powerful that scientists in France, the U.S., and Canada have observed cocaine-addicted rats demonstrating a clear preference for the sweet reward overthe cocaine they were addicted to.

And it doesn’t stop there. Fructose actually reprograms your body to overdose on sweet food.

And now you know that what you can’t stop eating is a toxin.

You see, fructose messes up two things your brain uses to regulate your eating:

1.      It blinds your brain to leptin, the hormone that makes you feel full.

2.      It fails to stop ghrelin, the hormone that makes you feel hungry.

This brutal 1-2 punch turns you into an unstoppable eating machine. Combine this with the drug-level addictiveness of the sweet reward, and you have a serious problem on your hands.

To experience this effect in the real world, eat your fill of raw vegetables. When you feel like you can’t eat anymore, grab a piece of your favorite chocolate or candy and put it in your mouth. Chances are, you’ll reach for seconds.

In fact, if you’re anything like me, your eyes probably dilated at the thought of tasting that candy just now. Perhaps you even considered going and getting some.

Now you know why you can’t stop eating.

And now you know that what you can’t stop eating is a toxin.

And it gets even worse…

It’s everywhere you turn.

The absolute worst part about sugar (and the fructose it carries) is that food manufacturers put it in so much of what you eat. Here’s a few of the less obvious things that have addedsugar in one form or another:

Sneaky Sugar Foods:


Beef Jerky


Pasta Sauces

Barbecue Sauces

Pretty Much ANY Sauces

Salad Dressings

Canned Soup

Peanut Butter



Dried Fruits

Canned Fruits


Instant Oatmeal


Anything labeled “lowfat” or “fat free”

Anything processed

And then, there’s the matter of what we drink, which is one of the main ways we’re getting way too much fructose.

Sodas, for example, are loaded with fructose. And fruit juice has even more fructose than sodas.74 Both drinks are bad news. And do you like to sweeten your coffee? How about your tea? Do you like flavored waters?

Thanks to the food industry’s penchant for feeding us sugar, fructose is coming at us from all angles.

You see, for most of our existence, we consumed 16-20 grams of fructose per day. Most of that came from whole fresh fruits. However, we’re now consuming 85-100 grams per day.

And most of that has happened in the last 30-40 years.76 Is it any wonder we’re having so many health problems?

So, what do I do?

You’ve stayed with me through the bad news, so here’s the good news:

While the problem is complicated, the solution is not.

Lustig made key suggestions I agree with in his presentation, and I’ve added some of my own. Here’s the combined list:

1) Cut out sugary drinks. This includes fruit juice.

This will remove a HUGE amount of fructose from your diet. If you do nothing else, do this. And avoid sugar in your coffee and tea. If you mustsweeten it, use stevia. Drink water (regular, unflavored) more than anything else.

2) When you eat carbs, eat them with fiber.

Fiber slows the absorption of sugar, helping to keep your insulin from spiking. It also increases feelings of satiety. This is why whole, fresh fruit — despite having fructose — is fine to eat. Want something sweet? Eat fruit.

3) When you’ve eaten, wait 20 minutes before going back for seconds.

This gives your brain a chance to get the signal that you’re full. When that happens, your hunger shuts down, stopping you from overeating.

4) For every minute you spend watching videos/movies/shows, exercise for one minute.

In other words, buy your watching time with exercise. You see, exercise does a few things:

·        Decreases stress and cortisol release, helping to keep you from stress-eating and storing fat.

·        Speeds up metabolism. Basically, you burn off the sugar before it can turn into fat.

·        Reduces insulin resistance, and all the problems that come with it.


5) Drink MORE water. PLAIN water.

I have to mention drinking one more time. We often confuse being thirsty for being hungry. Staying hydrated keeps you out of trouble in far too many ways to list here.

6) You can take 1 cheat day per week.

ALWAYS make it on the same day. On this day, you can have all your forbidden treats. When the clock strikes midnight, though, shut it down and go back to eating healthy.

It’s far easier to stick to a diet when you know you never have to do it more than 6 days at a time. Eventually, though, you might even lose the desire for a cheat day!

7) Finally, engineer accountability for yourself.

Tell your spouse, your friend, or your doctor about your plan for getting healthier. Consider placing a bet with them that would be painful to lose. Have them check in regularly. The point is, answer to someone. Accountability is powerful. It’s the whole reason personal training, life coaching, etc., exist as careers.

And there you have it. The truth about sugar, and how to deal with it.

I urge you to start acting on these steps today. But don’t worry… You don’t have to do the whole list on the first day.

Many people incorporate these 7 steps one at a time. Take your time, and pay attention to how you feel. And don’t forget to congratulate yourself on your progress!

And as always, I hope you’ve found this enlightening. Let me know your thoughts in the comments section below. And if you’ve found this information helpful…

Thank you for reading.

Stay healthy,

Dr. Amy Lee, MD
Nucific Board of Directors

As always, we love to her your feed back. You can reach us at or call our office at (312) 461-4107

14 Healthy Recipes to "Make Your Lunch Count"

Easy, Delicious Recipes to help you celebrate   "National Make Your Lunch Count Day"  Free Download


But why wait until April 13th,  when we can start today?  Between breakfast, widely branded as the day’s “most important” meal, and dinner, the meal we spend all day waiting for, lays a conspicuous meal that doesn’t get the recognition it deserves: lunch. It’s sometimes seen as a tide-me-over between breakfast and dinner, and will often be forgotten altogether if a day’s workload proves too large to allow for a break. So, on April 13, let’s take a moment to memorialize lunch. And not just memorialize it, but really make it count! Here’s a hearty, midday toast to National Make Lunch Count Day.

Why We Love National Make Lunch Count Day

  •  It's a window to the world

Lunch is the meal most often eaten away from home, and as such, we're usually around a different crowd of people in a different place than for our other meals. One way we can really make our lunches count is by finding ways to enjoy it with those around us. It's the perfect time to arrange a short, midday meet-up with an old friend, or to get to know a new one a little better.

  •  When breakfast gets in the way, lunch saves the day

We've all had mornings where we're just too rushed to put some food into our stomachs before taking off. If it weren't for our lunch breaks, there's no way we'd make it through those days. Lunch can serve as a much-needed afternoon pick-me-up when there's just no time for breakfast.

  •  It breaks up the day

You'd have a hard time finding a worker who doesn't look forward to their lunch break! After breaking out of those morning blues, lunch can serve as a much-needed hiatus from the day that'll help carry us through to the end.

How to Celebrate National Make Lunch Count Day

1. Arrange a group lunch

We've all got to eat lunch — why not do it together? National Make Lunch Count Day is the perfect excuse to arrange that group lunch that your coworkers have been talking about for lunch.

2. Buy a lunch for someone who can't

While many of us can afford that noontime sandwich, there are a lot of us who can't. If you're in a position to help, consider buying a lunch for someone near you who might otherwise struggle to pay for it themselves.

3. Plan your next week's lunches

Lunch often becomes an afterthought once you're nose-deep in a pile of work. Consider planning ahead to make sure you'll always have something nutritious to take you from breakfast to dinner! To do this, we have created a healthy lunch recipe book packed with easy recipes for the busy lifestyle we all seem to live.

So, regardless of it being "Make Your Lunch Count Day or Week", the key is to make your health count everyday.   In addition to downloading your FREE recipe book, also sign up for our Newsletter and receive tips on how to acheive health in your relationships, emotionally, physically,  spiritually, and  even professionally. 

We are excited to be a part of your life transformation.  As always, your feedback is greatly appreciated. 


Fill in your name and email and receive your FREE Recipe Book immediately.

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5 Things Sabotaging Your Diet

Taking Control of Your Weight Once and For All

1. Medical issues

First of all, it is important to rule out any hidden reasons or medical issues that may be hindering your weight loss.  There are reasons, other than your food intake, that can interfere with your body's natural processing ability.  Such issues as; thyroid disease, autoimmune, gut problems, even toxin build up in your liver can sabotage your weight-loss goals. These issues need to be diagnosed and treated prior to starting any weight loss program. 

2. You use willpower instead of science to control your appetite

Willing yourself to starve your body of adequate nutrition/calories accomplish two things - ramps up your cravings and slows down your metabolism.  You may lose some weight but sadly this is not sustainable.  Eating plenty of the right foods actually stimulates weight-loss.  This is why it is important to know which foods are best for your body type, activity level, and lifestyle.  No one diet fits all regardless of what the marketing campaign says.  

3. You may not be eating enough fat

Yes, you read that right.  Science has proven that by increasing your intake of healthy fats you actually burn more fat. So all those fat-free packaged foods you have eaten may be to blame for some of your extra pounds.  Why? because most fat-free products (including low-fat dairy) is loaded up with extra sugar, and sugar is the enemy to weight loss and your overall health.   Beware of product packages that claim to be sugar-free.  Many of these products have added chemicals, artificial sugars, and sugar alcohol that can pack on the pounds. 

4. You try to do it on your own

Research shows that you have a 97% higher chance to succeed  "if " you have a buddy doing the weight loss program with you or you are working with a coach who keeps you focused and accountable. Solo dieting has only a 6 % success rate. If you don't have a buddy that wants to do the same program check online - there are plenty of free weight-loss groups you can join. 

5. You don't have a plan

This is the number one reason most weight loss programs fail.  Everyone who starts a new diet has great intentions of reaching their goal.  But regardless, if you're a newbie to nutrition or you are up to speed on the latest food science, if you don't have a plan you will fail.  No, I am not just talking about a meal plan but rather how you plan to juggle your busy life style and have time to prepare 3 meals plus a snack. It is common to master this for the first few days, maybe even weeks, but all too often it becomes too much and we fall back to the convenience of fast food or prepackaged foods only to gain the weight back. 

In order to help you avoid this all too common pitfall, I have created a guide to Healthy Meal Planning and Preparation.   This guide is packed with great ideas and tips to ensure you are equipped for success with any diet plan - and it is yours FREE. Simply Fill out the form below click submit and I will email you your copy. 

*Note:  Please put "Free Guide to Healthy Meal Plan and Prep in Subject line to ensure you are sent the correct eBook.



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If you have any questions regarding what diet is right for you - please don't hesitate to contact me at or call my office (310) 461-4107 

Stay Healthy 

Clean Eating Course 101

From diet books and recipes to your Instagram feed, the clean eating trend seems to be everywhere lately. Read on to find out what it's all about and if it's really worth trying.

Defining Clean Eating

Maybe a new raw cafe has sprung up in your neighborhood, or you read about Katy Perry and Gwyneth Paltrow being fans. Either way, eating "clean" is gaining traction — but what does it actually mean, and how is it good for the body?

Clean eating is a deceptively simple concept. Rather than revolving around the idea of ingesting more or less of specific things (for instance, fewer calories or more protein), the idea is more about being mindful of the food's pathway between its origin and your plate. At its simplest, clean eating is about eating whole foods, or "real" foods — those that are un- or minimally processed, refined, and handled, making them as close to their natural form as possible. However, modern food production has become so sophisticated that simply eating whole foods can be a challenging proposition these days.

What Counts as Processed Foods?

First, let's start with the definition of processed food. "Processing" includes:

Additions of any kind — everything from salt, sugar, and fat to aid flavor and mouthfeel, to preservatives that keep food from spoiling too quickly, to the vitamins enriching everything from beverages to breakfast cereal. 
Changing the form of the natural food — for instance, removing the bran and germ from whole grains to create refined bread, mashing apples into applesauce, or stir-frying veggies.
Foods with components manufactured in a lab. (You probably don't need clarification on this one, but if the ingredient list has stuff you can't recognize or pronounce, that's a pretty solid indication that it's not natural).

In that light, processed food includes everything from a hot dog (where do we even begin?) to jarred organic pasta sauce and instant oatmeal. And yes, changing the form of natural food includes cooking as well, so even your steamed broccoli is technically processed, albeit minimally.

So why, exactly, is processing so bad — especially if it's something as simple as adding heat?

Why Is Processed Food Bad?

In two words: It's not. Or rather, not categorically.

"Processing is not always bad," says Jessica Fanzo, assistant professor of nutrition at Columbia University. "Often processing removes toxins or bacteria, or allows for us to eat certain types of foods in off-season due to freezing or canning." (Pasteurized milk, anyone?) Processing "can also include altering the consistency or taste of food to make it more appealing," Fanzo adds. So that delicious post-workout kale-celery-spinach- banana smoothie  you had? Enjoy that virtuous feeling knowing that you were likely able to down that giant amount of greens because your treat was somewhat processed.

Still, even though pasteurized milk, kale smoothies, and instant oatmeal are all processed, that doesn't make them on par with doughnuts and Diet Coke.

"The key is to avoid foods that are 'ultra-processed,'" says Fanzo — basically, anything food-product-like or ready-to-heat."

The Problem with Ultra-Processed Foods

As you can probably guess, the health problems associated with ultra-processed food are numerous. Foods with genetically modified organisms (GMOs) have been linked to cancer and infertility; highly processed foods are stripped of nutrients needed for overall health; and heavily modified food tends to have additives that overstimulate the production of dopamine, the "pleasure" neurotransmitter, perpetuating a negative cycle of constant junk food cravings.

However, there's added reason for pause when reaching for the Pop-Tart.

In a 2011 article published in the Journal of the World Public Health Nutrition Association, Carlos Monteiro, professor at the Department of Nutrition of the School of Public Health at the University of Sao Paulo, argues that having ultra-processed foods touted in a way that makes it seem good for you — less sodium! no trans fats! vitamin-enriched! — actually causes more damage to our collective understanding of healthy eating than we may realize. Considering the increasing abundance of "healthfully" enhanced products in the grocery aisles (or perhaps even your refrigerator), Monteiro may be on to something.

The Perks of Clean Eating

Thanks to extensive research that has linked eating whole foods with good health, "we do know that largely plant-based diets are healthy," says Fanzo. Multiple studies have shown that diets heavy on fruits and vegetables can curb or prevent certain life-threatening conditions and diseases, such as high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. Plus, there's research linking diets high in fruits and veggies to healthy weight management and glowing skin and hair — as if you needed more motivation.

Clean eating.jpg

How to Eat Clean

Unprocessed foods include:

  • Fresh fruits and vegetables
  • Dried legumes
  • Nuts
  • Farm-fresh eggs

Minimally processed foods include:

  • Unrefined grains, like whole wheat bread and pasta, popcorn, steel-cut oatmeal, quinoa, and brown rice
  • Frozen fruits and vegetables
  • Unprocessed meat; wild over pastured, pastured over grain-fed
  • Hormone-free dairy
  • Oils

Pesticide-free organic food is preferable to avoid consuming added hormones or chemicals. It's also important to note that eating clean doesn't give you free reign to eat endless quantities. They may be healthy, but they still have calories!

"You always have to think about portion size," says Marissa Lippert, RD, owner of Nourish Kitchen + Table, a seasonally influenced cafe in New York City. "I always encourage people to think of their plate in terms of fifths: three-fifths should be fruits and vegetables, one-fifth should be protein, and one-fifth healthy carbs."

How to Shop Clean

Realistically, eating clean doesn't mean you need to eat everything raw and straight from the ground. It means choosing minimally processed foods with few ingredients on the label, if it has a label at all.

If you're shopping around the perimeter of the grocery store, that's always a good start, says Lippert.

When perusing the main aisles for packaged foods, ask yourself: Where did this food or its ingredients come from? How much has it been processed or handled? The ingredient label should be short, and all ingredients should be recognizable. Scan for easy-to-avoid additives like artificial coloring and flavors.

How to Cook Clean

Cooking does alter your food, but it isn't necessarily a bad thing.

"While it's true that some nutrients are lost during cooking, like vitamin C, other nutrients are increased when foods are cooked, like lycopene, so it's best to eat a wide variety of foods, in both their raw and cooked forms," says EA Stewart, RD, who blogs at The Spicy RD.

When cooking food, "the focus should be on maintaining the integrity of what you are consuming and avoiding high-fat cooking methods such as deep-frying or stewing in animal or vegetable fats," says Miranda Hammer, a New York City registered dietitian and author of food blog The Crunchy Radish.

When cooking, opt for flash-cook methods such as stir-frying and ones without additives like steaming. For fruits and veggies, raw is best, but steaming is a close second in terms of preserving nutritional value and keeping the food's natural integrity.

The Paleo Lifestyle

The Paleo diet, which promotes eating only foods as our ancestors did during the Paleolithic era, is similar to a clean diet in that they both advocate whole foods. However, the Paleo diet limits food to pre-Industrial Revolution, meaning it prohibits all grains (not just refined ones), legumes, and dairy products, which clean eating does not.

While there are many personal testimonials that Paleo works, some experts are skeptical. "I don't think we need to all eat meat," says Fanzo. Moreover, "banishing major food groups makes no sense from a physiologic point of view. It sets a person up for failure and rebounding weight."

The Whole 9 Lifestyle and Whole 30

Founded in 2009 by a couple in Texas, the Whole 9 lifestyle is based on nine principles that contribute to a balanced life. Nutrition is one of the core factors, and the lifestyle's eating recommendation is one of whole foods, like meat, eggs, vegetables, fruit, healthy oils, nuts, and seeds.

If you're new to Whole 9, it kicks off with a 30-day detox called Whole 30, in which whole foods are eaten but all alcohol, sugar, grains, legumes, and dairy are eliminated to "push the reset button with your metabolism, systemic inflammation, and the downstream effects of the food choices you've been making."

Experts like Fanzo see the elimination of entire food groups (as with the Paleo diet) as problematic. For some people, though, a short cut-off may help them get in the right "healthy eating" mind-set.

"If a brief, up to one week abstinence from certain foods — not all foods! — helps people get in the right mind-set to eat healthier, and they don't have any medical conditions, then I think this is fine from a health and nutrition standpoint," says Stewart. "However I don't think it is necessary, and in many cases it sets people up for an 'all or nothing' approach to their diets."

To receive the latest information on "Clean Eating" sign up for our newsletter.  We love to hear from you so feel free to drop us a line in the comment box below.

Be Healthy,

Total Wellness Resource Center 

Original article was published in Fitness Magazine . Author : Joselyn Voo

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2017 Eat  Healthy - Get Fit  

Our exciting new  "2017 Eat Healthy - Get Fit" Program is built on a foundation of science based nutrition and  the proven "buddy system"  that allows you and a friend to achieve individual health goals while working along side a personal Wellness and Nutrition Coach.  

Studies over the years have shown that when 2 people or more team up to lose weight and get fit together they are more successful than individuals who go it alone. A study from Indiana University showed that the 12-month drop-out rate for "buddies" participating in a fitness program was just 6 percent, compared to 43 percent among individuals who tried doing it in their own.  

Are you ready to  live your New Year's resolution and get fit ?  Then grab a friend and  lets get started.  

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Jump Start Program includes:

  • Nutrition Profile Evaluation & Wellness Assessment  through personal computer log-in portal with Total Wellness. 
  • One-hour Initial Consultation via skype 
  • Individual goal setting with detailed action strategy and measurable.
  • Personalized Meal plan
  • 4-week grocery list
  • Food accountability journaling 
  • Daily motivational emails or texts
  • 2 weekly 30-minute Coaching Sessions via skype or phone 
  • Unlimited access to coach via text or email.
  • Access to original healthy  recipes 
  • Final Success Review with move forward action plan.

Offer Ends February 4h

Asparagus n' Raspberry Black Rice Salad

  • Prep time: 10 mins
  • Cook time: 40 mins
  • Total time: 50 mins
  • Gluten-Free and Vegan
  • Recipe type: Entree
  • Serves: 4


  • 1½ cups uncooked black rice
  • 1 pint organic raspberries
  • 1 bunch of fresh asparagus, ends removed
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh lemon zest
  • 2 scallions, finely chopped
  • 2 Tbsp. shredded coconut
  • ½ tsp. sea salt
  • ¼ tsp. freshly ground pepper
  • 2 Tsp. extra virgin olive oil


  1. Cook black rice according to package.
  2. Rinse raspberries; set aside. Cut asparagus into ½ inch pieces. In a large bowl, combine cooked rice, asparagus, lemon zest, scallions, coconut, sea salt and pepper; gently toss to combine. Place in the refrigerator for 20 minutes.
  3. Remove from fridge; fold in fresh raspberries; gently toss to combine. Drizzle with olive oil.
  4. Serve chilled.

Pear and Pomegranate Salad with Gorgonzola and Champagne Vinaigrette


  • 8 cups baby spinach or romaine lettuce
  • 1 ripe pear, cut in half
  • 1/3 cup pomegranate seeds
  • 2 ounces Gorgonzola
  • Champagne vinaigrette, recipe follows
  • Fresh cracked pepper
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • Champagne Vinaigrette:
  • 1/4 cup champagne vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil


In a decorative bowl or platter, add the spinach or romaine. Cut the pear into fans, and then slice again on the diagonal, add the greens, crumble the Gorgonzola onto the salad and then drizzle with about half of the vinaigrette. Top with fresh cracked pepper and lightly drizzle the whole salad with the honey. Serve immediately.

Champagne Vinaigrette: In a small bowl or glass jar, add all the ingredients except the olive oil. Mix well, then slowly drizzle in the olive oil to combine. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Clean Kale and Brussel Sprout Salad - Can you say Yum



  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon minced shallot
  • 1 small 
  • garlic clove, finely grated
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt plus more for seasoning
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 large bunches of Tuscan kale (about 1 1/2 lb. total), center stem discarded, leaves thinly sliced
  • 12 ounces brussels sprouts, trimmed, finely grated or shredded with a knife
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1/3 cup almonds with skins, coarsely chopped
  • 1 cup finely grated Pecorino 


  • Combine lemon juice, Dijon mustard, shallot, garlic, 1/2 tsp. salt, and a pinch of pepper in a small bowl. Stir to blend; set aside to let flavors meld. Mix thinly sliced kale and shredded brussels sprouts in a large bowl.
  • Measure 1/2 cup oil into a cup. Spoon 1 Tbsp. oil from cup into a small skillet; heat oil over medium-high heat. Add almonds to skillet and stir frequently until golden brown in spots, about 2 minutes. Transfer nuts to a paper towel-lined plate. Sprinkle almonds lightly with salt.
  • Slowly whisk remaining olive oil in cup into lemon-juice mixture. Season dressing to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Do Ahead: Dressing, kale mixture, and toasted almonds can be prepared 8 hours ahead. Cover dressing and kale mixture separately and chill. Cover almonds and let stand at room temperature.
  • Add dressing and cheese to kale mixture; toss to coat. Season lightly with salt and pepper. Garnish with almonds.
  • Add your favorite meat if desiring extra protein 
  • Yum - enjoy

Super Refreshing Shaved Root Vegetable Salad


  • 4 tablespoons hazelnuts, divided
  • 1/4 cup fresh orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoons hazelnut oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 medium red beet, peeled
  • 1 medium golden beet, peeled
  • 1 medium kohlrabi
  • 1 small yuca
  • 1 small turnip, peeled
  • 1 carrot, peeled
  • 2 radishes, trimmed
  • 1/4 cup (loosely packed) flat-leaf parsley



  • Crush 2 tablespoons hazelnuts; place in a small bowl. Whisk in orange and lemon juice, vegetable oil, and hazelnut oil. Season vinaigrette to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Thinly slice beets, yuca, kohlrabi, turnip, carrot, and radishes using a mandoline or V-slicer. Place red beet slices in another small bowl and remaining vegetables and parsley in a medium bowl. Spoon 3 tablespoons vinaigrette over red beets; pour remaining vinaigrette over vegetables in medium bowl. Toss each to coat. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Arrange red beets on a platter; spoon over any vinaigrette from bowl. Top red beets with remaining vegetables. Drizzle salad with any remaining vinaigrette; garnish with remaining 2 tablespoons hazelnuts.


Per serving: 165 calories, 14 g fat, 10 g carbohydrate

Roasted Butternut Squash Salad With Tangerine-Rosemary Vinaigrette

Refreshing summer salad for those hot August nights! Enjoy!


  • 1 1/2 pounds butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 1-inch cubes (about 4 cups)
  • 4  tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 teaspoons roughly chopped fresh rosemary
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 4 tangerines
  • 6 cups fresh spinach, loosely packed
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries




  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  • Toss the squash with 2 tablespoons olive oil on a baking sheet and spread in an even layer. Season with 2 teaspoons rosemary, and salt and pepper. Roast - stirring once halfway through, until the squash is just tender and golden, about 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool until just warm, about 15 minutes.
  • While the squash is roasting, peel 3 tangerines and slice them crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick rounds, removing any seeds. Juice the remaining tangerine and whisk the juice together with the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil and remaining 1 teaspoon rosemary. Season the Dressing with salt and pepper.
  • Combine the warm squash, the spinach, tangerine slices and cranberries with the dressing and toss gently to coat. Divide among salad plates.

Shaved Kohlrabi with Apple and Hazelnuts

If you have never had Kohlrabi you are in for a real treat.  I first discovered this root at a farmers market in Redondo Beach, CA and it quickly became my favorite veggie. It comes is purple and white - try mixing colors to make a beautiful presentation of this dish. 

Shaved Kohlrabi with Apple and Hazelnuts



  • ½ cup blanched hazelnuts
  • 2 medium kohlrabi (about 2 lb. total), peeled, thinly sliced on a mandolin  
  • 1 tart apple (such as Pink Lady or Crispin), peeled, cored, thinly sliced on a mandoline
  • ½ teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar or white balsamic vinegar
  • Kosher salt
  • ½ cup torn fresh mint leaves, plus more for serving
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 oz. Pecorino di Fossa or Parmesan, shaved (about ¼ cup)


  • Preheat oven to 350°. Toast hazelnuts on a rimmed baking sheet, tossing occasionally, until golden brown, 10–12 minutes. Let cool, then coarsely chop.
  • Toss kohlrabi, apple, lemon zest, lemon juice, and vinegar in a medium bowl; season with salt. Add ½ cup mint and gently toss to just combine.
  • Toss toasted hazelnuts and oil in a small bowl to coat; season with salt.
  • Divide kohlrabi salad among plates and top with seasoned hazelnuts, Pecorino, and more mint.
  • Do Ahead: Hazelnuts can be toasted 1 day ahead; store airtight at room temperature.


This is one of those recipes that, to me, is just inexplicably good. Simple, quality ingredients combine to make something that is so tasty it elicits an eye roll… at least in this house that’s the measure of deliciousness!

Fresh basil, melt-in-your-mouth mozzarella and a juicy tomato combine with the crispy eggplant to make for an amazing flavor experience. Drizzled with a delicious mixture of good quality olive oil and balsamic vinegar, you’d think you were transported to the Mediterranean with one mouthful!

YIELD: Makes 2


  • 2 ripe tomatoes
  • 1 8 oz. ball fresh mozzarella*
  • 6-8 leaves fresh basil
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil, for skillet
  • 6 (1/4-inch-thick) slices eggplant
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • For dressing*:
  • 2 Tablespoons good-quality olive oil
  • 1 Tablespoon good-quality balsamic vinegar
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste


  1. Slice tomatoes and mozzarella about 1/4-inch thick. Rinse and pat basil dry (you can keep it whole or tear into smaller pieces). Set aside.
  2. Preheat a large skillet to medium heat and add 1 Tbsp. olive oil. Prepare eggplant slices by coating lightly in flour, then egg (shaking off excess), and then panko, all in separate dishes. Once skillet is hot, add eggplant slices and fry, in batches, about 3 minutes per side until golden brown. Remove to a paper-towel lined plate.
  3. Combine dressing ingredients in a small bowl and whisk until well-combined. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.
  4. On serving plates, build stacks by alternating tomato, mozzarella, eggplant, and basil. Repeat until you have 2 equal-sized stacks. Drizzle with dressing.
  5. Enjoy!

Amazing Arugula Salad with Turkey Bacon and Poached Egg

This is my favorite Breakfast Salad that I ask for when I go out to breakfast. Sometimes the waiter looks at me funny but it's simply out of this world! 

  • 8 ounces turkey bacon, cut into lardons
  • 2 large shallots, sliced
  • 8 ounces arugula
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • kosher salt and black pepper to taste


1. Bring a medium pot of water to a boil for the eggs.

2. In a medium (10-inch) skillet over high heat, heat the bacon with 1/4 cup water. Once the water is evaporated, lower the heat to medium-low and continue cooking the bacon until it’s beginning to crisp.

3. Add the shallot to the bacon and cook until it’s wilted and translucent and the bacon is cooked, about 3 minutes more.

4. Put the arugula in a salad bowl and spoon the bacon-shallot mixture over the greens (you may want to leave some fat behind, depending on how much there is in the pan and the quantity of greens). Toss together to evenly coat.

5. Meanwhile, crack the eggs into individual small bowls or ramekins. Lower the water to a simmer and carefully add the eggs one at a time. Cook gently until the white is completely set but the yolk is still runny, 3-4 minutes.

6. Sprinkle the arugula with the vinegar (start with less and add to taste). Season with salt and pepper and divide amongst plates or bowls. Top with poached eggs and serve immediately.

Roasted Beet Salad


  • 2 large whole beets
  • 1 ball of fresh Mozzarella cheese
  • A few slices of cucumber
  • Toasted hazelnuts for garnish
  • A few tablespoons of vinaigrette


  1. Roast whole beets on a sheet pan at 350 degrees for about an hour, until they are fork tender. Let them cool.
  2. Slice the beets into slices that are a little thicker than ¼ inch thick. Using heart shaped cookie cutters, cut out some hearts out of the beet slices.Place on a serving plate.
  3. Take fresh Mozzarella (if you're doing Whole30 eating, use slices of jicama.) and cut it into slices that are little thicker than ¼ inch thick. Cut out smaller heart shapes. Press the Mozzarella hearts into the beet juices that are left on your cutting board, turning the slices slightly pink. Place these hearts on the beet hearts.
  4. Cut out tiny hearts out of cucumber and scatter on top. Scatter nuts on top - I used roasted hazelnuts.
  5. Drizzle with your favorite vinaigrette. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.


Add grilled chicken for protein and enjoy

Warm Pasta Salad with Shrimp

  • 3 cups uncooked farfalle (bow tie pasta) whole grain 
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice 
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Dijon mustard 
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh garlic 
  • 1/4 cup olive oil 
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt 
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 
  • Cooking spray 
  • 12 ounces medium shrimp, peeled and deveined 
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped fresh spinach 
  • 1 cup canned cannellini beans, rinsed and drained 
  • 1/4 cup minced red onion 
  • 2 tablespoons chopped capers 


1. Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat; drain.

2. Combine juice, mustard, and garlic in a small bowl, stirring well with a whisk. Gradually add oil, stirring constantly with a whisk. Stir in salt and pepper.

3. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add shrimp to pan; cook for 2 minutes or until done. Stir in spinach, cannellini beans, red onion, and 2 tablespoons capers; toss to combine. Add the pasta and juice mixture to shrimp mixture; toss.

Red Cabbage Salad with Curried Seitan

Yummy. A high protein, low calorie Vegan salad. Enjoy



  • ⅓ cup prepared mango chutney
  • ⅓ cup creamy natural peanut butter


  • 1 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1 8-oz. pkg. seitan, cut into bite-size strips
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced (1 Tbs.)
  • ¾ tsp. mild curry powder
  • 6 cups shredded red cabbage (½ small head)
  • 1 small cucumber, sliced into thin half moons (¾ cup)
  • 3 green onions, thinly sliced (½ cup)


To make Dressing: Blend chutney, peanut butter, and 1/3 cup water in blender until smooth. Set aside.

To make Salad: Heat 2 tsp. oil in large skillet over medium heat. Add seitan, and season with salt, if desired. Sauté 5 to 7 minutes, or until browned. Add garlic and remaining 1 tsp. oil, and sauté 30 seconds. Sprinkle with curry powder, and sauté 2 minutes more. Remove from heat, and keep warm.

Toss cabbage and cucumber with Dressing in large bowl. Top with warm seitan and green onions.


Another Amazing Vegan Salad Packed with Protein SERVES 4


  • 1/4 cup olive oil

  • 2 medium-large cloves garlic

  • 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika

  • 1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric

  • Pinch sea salt

  • 1 Japanese eggplant, about 10 inches long, ends removed, and cut on the diagonal into 1/4-inch thick slices

  • 1/2 of a large orange or yellow bell pepper, cut into 1/3-inch or slightly wider pieces

  • Approximately 1/4 cup red onion, cut into 1/4-inch slices

  • 1-15 ounce can white beans, rinsed and drained

  • 2 generous cups lightly packed fresh kale, stems removed, and torn into bite size pieces (if the farmer’s market doesn’t have any, I purchase the pre-washed, pre-torn kale in a bag and remove any remaining thick stems)

  • 5 ounces plain or garlic-flavored hummus (half of a typical carton–I use Sabra brand Roasted Garlic)

  • Approximately 1/3 cup olive oil

  • 8 small-medium leaves fresh basil chiffonade (stacked, tightly rolled, and sliced into very narrow slivers), or finely chopped

  • 8 small-medium leaves fresh sage chiffonade (stacked, tightly rolled, and sliced into very narrow slivers), or finely chopped

  • Pinch sea salt and freshly ground black pepper or to taste

  • 8 fresh figs, stemmed, and sliced in half vertically

  • 1/4 cup roasted and lightly salted sunflower seeds

  • Optional garnish: sprigs of fresh basil

  1. In a medium-large bowl, whisk together the 1/4 cup olive oil, garlic, smoked paprika, turmeric, and pinch of sea salt. Add the eggplant, bell pepper, and red onion and toss to coat.

  2. Let marinate for a few minutes.

  3. Then, heat a seasoned grill pan over medium high and grill the veggies in batches for 2 to 3 minutes on each side or until nice grill marks develop.

  4. Return them to the bowl they were marinating in.

  5. While the veggies grill, whisk together the hummus, 1/3 cup olive oil, fresh herbs, and salt and pepper to taste.

  6. Add the white beans and kale to the veggies, pour the dressing over and toss to coat.

  7. Arrange the salad on a serving platter or individual plates, nestle the fig halves, flesh side up, over the top, sprinkle with sunflower seeds and garnish, if desired, with fresh basil springs.

  8. Serve immediately.

Summer Salad with Feta, Pecans, Basil, and Blackberry Vinaigrette


  • About 6 cups salad greens, loosely packed
  • ¼ cup torn basil leaves
  • 2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
  • ¼ cup toasted pecans-chopped
  • ⅓ cup blackberries
  • ¼ cup crumbled feta
  • 3 Tbsp Blackberry Dressing

This tangy blackberry vinaigrette has just the right balance of sweet and savory to rock your tastebuds with a fresh new use for summertime blackberries.


  • 1 cup ripe blackberries
  • 1 Tbsp. honey (or agave if vegan)
  • 2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • ½ tsp. dijon

Dressing Instructions

  1. Add all ingredients to a food processor or blender and mix well. If dressing is too thick, you can thin it with a few drops of water. Dressing will keep in fridge for about a week.

Salad instructions

  1. Toss salad greens, basil, tomatoes, and pecans together with dressing.
  2. Gently stir in feta and blackberries.
  3. Serve immediately. 
  4. To make this a more filling meal, add protein like chicken, boiled egg, or beans.

Tuna Salad-Stuffed Tomatoes with Arugula

The tuna in this great-looking stuffed tomato recipe isn't your typical mayo-based affair. The sherry vinaigrette does double duty: it adds fresh flavor to the tuna filling and also dresses the baby arugula and white bean salad.


Tuna Salad-Stuffed Tomatoes with Arugula from Total Wellness Resource Center for the 30 day healthy salad challenge

Tuna Salad-Stuffed Tomatoes with Arugula from Total Wellness Resource Center for the 30 day healthy salad challenge

  • 2 tablespoons extra-Virgin Olive Oil
  • 3 tablespoons sherry vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground 
  • 2 5-ounce cans chunk light tuna in water
  • 1/3 cup chopped celery
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
  • 1/4 cup chopped Kalamata olives
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 15-ounce can great northern beans, rinsed
  • 8 cups baby arugula


Whisk oil, vinegar, salt and pepper in a medium bowl. Transfer 3 tablespoons of the dressing to a large bowl and set aside.Slice enough off the top of each tomato to remove the core (1/2 to 1 inch). Chop enough of the tops to equal 1/2 cup and add to the medium bowl. Scoop out the tomato pulp using a teaspoon or melon baller. (Discard the pulp or save for another use.)Add tuna, celery, onion, olives and thyme to the medium bowl; gently toss to combine. Fill the hollowed tomatoes with the tuna mixture.Add beans and arugula to the dressing in the large bowl and toss to combine. Divide the salad among 4 plates and top each with a stuffed tomato.

Heart Healthy Citrus-Avocado Salmon Salad Recipe

A Must Try ......... amazing


Author: Lindsey Johnson

  • Prep time:  10 mins
  • Cook time:  25 mins
  • Total time:  35 mins
  • Serves: 2-4


A salad full of heart-healthy ingredients like salmon, avocado, citrus and almonds.


  • For salmon:
  • Two (4-6 ounce) salmon fillets
  • 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • salt and pepper
  • For salad:
  • 3-4 cups organic baby spinach
  • 1 large pink grapefruit, peeled and sectioned
  • 2 medium navel oranges, peeled and sectioned
  • 1 avocado, thinly sliced
  • ¼ to ½ cup sliced almonds
  • ¼ cup green onions, sliced
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper, to taste


  • For salmon - Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place salmon fillets on baking sheet. Squeeze fresh lemon over the top and drizzle with a little olive oil. Season well with salt and pepper. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until cooked through. Remove from oven and let cool before assembling salad.
  • For salad - Place spinach in a bowl or on a large serving platter. Top with citrus, avocado, and cooled salmon. Sprinkle the top with almonds and green onions. Squeeze the fresh lemon juice over the top and drizzle with the olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.

By Lindsay Johnson