The Gratitude Smoothie

The Gratitude Smoothie

I don’t know what it is about spring, but every year I feel completely transformed and alive with energy.

I love this time of year and I love living in New York, a place where if you’re paying attention, tiny miracles abound – the sweet tweets of birds reappearing after a long, icy winter, tiny new leaves sprouting up through dead grass and dirt, bright purple crocuses sprinkling the landscape with color, and sun-shiny mornings that flow into warm, inviting afternoons.

This past weekend my family and I attended a Passover Seder on Saturday and an Easter breakfast on Sunday. What I love about these spring holidays is how they both celebrate hope, freedom, and renewal.

Perhaps that is why I feel so good this time of year. For me, spring is a time to get outside and be free! It is a time to let go of layers (gloves, hats, scarves be gone!), to shed excess weight (hello exercise!), and to bring in yummy delicious foods that energize me and put a spring in my step.

To help YOU celebrate spring, I give you the Gratitude Smoothie Recipe…


1/4-1/2 avocado – rich in good fats to fuel your brain and keep you satisfied
1/2 banana – high in potassium and fiber
5 fresh or frozen organic strawberries – rich in antioxidants, help reduce sugar cravings
1 handful organic spinach – rich in B vitamins and folate
1 sprig of parsley – has a cleansing effect and is a symbol of fertility
1/2 tbs cacao powder – rich in magnesium and antioxidants and a natural mood booster (note: if you’re sensitive to caffeine, start with 1/2 teaspoon and see how you feel!)
1 cup water – energizing
1 cup ice – invigorating
1 sprinkle Vitamin G – rich in serotonin and a natural stress-reducer

Blend and serve!

The gratitude smoothie can help you start your day remembering that:

  1. You are free to love your body.
  2. You are free to nourish yourself with whole, energizing foods.
  3. You are free to live without symptoms, cravings, worry, or fear.
  4. You are free to choose positive thoughts and to surround yourself with positive people.

Tweet Now:

I am free to choose positive thoughts
and to surround myself with positive people. @Gratitude2Bliss


So now I’d like to hear from you! Please share in the comments below, or on my Facebook page, what you love about spring!


The Gratitude-Exercise-Sleep Connection!

The Gratitude-Exercise-Sleep Connection!

(part three of a five part series on gratitude and nutrition)

This week’s post brings us back to our conversation on Primary Foods, with our focus on physical activity! (For more on primary foods, check out The Four Areas of Your Life You Need to Be Feeding).

Physical activity is one of the primary foods your body must have to stay in balance.

According to a study done by Robert Emmons and Michael McCullough, two of the leading researchers in positive psychology, people who kept a weekly gratitude journal over a nine week period reported spending 19% more time exercising than those who didn’t keep gratitude journals.

To understand why this happens, let’s take a look at one of the many physiological effects practicing gratitude has on the body:

Engaging in thoughts of gratitude has been proven to boost levels of serotonin in the body.

Low levels of serotonin can cause loneliness and depression and can also trigger carbohydrate and sugar cravings, causing a viscous cycle of ups and downs.

When you boost serotonin naturally through your gratitude practice, however, you are effectively giving yourself the energy you need to get out and exercise. I don’t know about you but I find it much easier to exercise when my mood and energy are up.)

When you exercise, your body produces even more serotonin, as well as endorphins which lift your mood even more (think “runner’s high.”)

Along with physical activity, our bodies also need adequate sleep. What many people don’t realize is that when you sleep, your body is actually working to remove toxins and balance hormones. So when you deny your body sleep, your hormones can quickly get out of balance causing you to crave sugar and other comfort foods in lieu of exercise.

Researchers at the National Institute of Health discovered that feelings of gratitude activate the hypothalamus which is responsible for many essential bodily functions including sleep. The hypothalamus has a huge affect on metabolism, stress and eating.

Another crucial aspect of practicing gratitude – something I know to be true from my own experience– is that when I’m focused on what I’m grateful for, including my body, I find it easy to reward myself with a good night’s sleep, prioritizing my health and happiness over work or other distractions. I’m also more likely to see exercise as something I “get to” do rather than something I “should” do, and I choose activities I enjoy the most, like yoga or going for a brisk walk along the water.

So it’s easy to see how a simple 5 minute daily gratitude practice can lead to more exercise and better sleep, more energy and a better mood, and ultimately greater health and happiness for yourself!

5 minutes of gratitude improves exercise, sleep and mood!


Tweet now:

5 minutes of daily gratitude improves exercise, sleep and mood! @Gratitude2Bliss

For more info on how to get started with your gratitude practice, click here: Getting Started with Gratitude!








So now I’d like to hear from you! Please share in the comments below, or on my Facebook page, how gratitude helps you exercise more or sleep better.

5 Reasons I Love to Cleanse

5 Reasons I Love to Cleanse

This has been one rough winter here in New York, but Spring is almost here (yay!) and that has me thinking all about cleansing.

While there are certain things I do all year round to stay clean – like avoiding junky food, junky products and junky thinking – I like to take two weeks out each spring to refresh my healthy habits and add one or two new ones.

When I do a cleanse, I use this time to let go of what I no longer need in order to make space for new growth. Spring is the perfect time to do this because nature is right there with me, supporting me as I make room for new life to bloom.

For me, cleansing has become a way of life (I even co-wrote a book about it!) and it is very closely tied to my gratitude practice. In fact, I see cleansing as a practice too. It is found in many cultures and religions in the form of fasting. Cleansing a way for me to take extra special care of myself for a few weeks each spring and to show my body how much I appreciate it.


Tweet Now:

I love my body and everything it does for me. @Gratitude2Bliss

Here are five reasons why I love to cleanse:

  1. To me, cleansing is one of the highest forms of self-love. When I cleanse, I am telling my body, “You matter to me,” and “I love you for all you do.”
  2. Shedding excess weight and toxins from my body clears up my mind and my spirit.
  3. When I cleanse, I am practicing healthy habits that I can then take with me, one at a time, into my daily life. It’s the perfect training for a healthy life.
  4. Cleansing keeps me connected to my body in a new, fresh way. It helps me notice how my body feels as a result of how I treat it.
  5. Cleansing helps me feel excited about life. As I clear away old stuff, I feel energized and excited to welcome in new, fun experiences that are coming my way.

Remember that not all cleanses are the same and not all cleanses are right for everyone. Where you are in your lifestyle and what your goals may be will determine how you will want to cleanse.

LM_signatureSo now I’d like to hear from you! What questions do you have about cleansing? What is your favorite way to cleanse? Please share in the comments below.

The Most Important Factor in Being Well

The Most Important Factor in Being Well

February is National Cancer Prevention Month.

I love the term prevention. To me, prevention is about honoring the body and prioritizing healthy choices. It is a positive term. It conveys trust in the body’s ability to heal and thrive.

When we think of prevention in these terms, we remove any fear or negativity from the equation and stay focused on the positive.

Last year my company was awarded a grant through the Livestrong Foundation’s Big C Competition which “is a one-of-a-kind competition to generate innovations that improve the daily quality of life for the 32.5 million people around the world living with cancer now.”

You can check out my winning entry here.

I’m sure you already know that healthy choices such as avoiding stress, eating whole foods rich in vitamins and minerals, drinking plenty of clean water (at least 64 oz/day), exercising regularly and getting adequate sleep all serve to keep your body in tip-top shape and avoid illness.

But did you know the one thing many of us holistic types agree is the most important factor in staying well?  Loving yourself.

Tweet Now:
Loving myself is the most important thing I can do to stay well. @Gratitude2Bliss

And that is where practicing gratitude comes in.

Keeping a daily gratitude practice helps you stay focused on the positive. And when done effectively, your practice helps you stay connected to yourself and to appreciate yourself in ways you haven’t before.

As you begin to appreciate all the good things in your life, you get clearer about what matters to you most. You – often unconsciously – begin making choices that support your best interest.

Choices that support your happiness, your health and ultimately your bliss.

The result? You end up loving yourself more. You take better care of yourself and you become kinder to yourself.

What I love most about this practice is that it only takes a few minutes a day!

So in honor of Cancer Prevention Month, please write down three things you LOVE about yourself – either in your journal or in the comments below.

Be well and thanks for reading!


Please share three things you LOVE about yourself below! Don’t hold back, you are absolutely wonderful so let it shine!

3 Ways Gratitude Ups the Love In Your Life

3 Ways Gratitude Ups The Love In Your Life
(Part two of a five-part series on gratitude and nutrition)

One of my favorite primary foods is relationships.

Happiness expert, Christine Carter, Ph.D., states, “If I had to pick one thing that matters most to human happiness, I would say that our relationships matter more than anything else.”

In her book, Raising Happiness, 10 Simple Steps for More Joyful Kids and Happier Parents, she shares, “Appreciation is one of the most important ways we teach our kids to form strong relationships with others.”

As a new Mom, I have to say one of the things I am most grateful for are the relationships I am forming as a result of having my son. The other day I chatted with one of my new Mom friends about our blessings and challenges. As she shared her struggle, she told me how much the gratitude journal I gave her helps her stay “on track” so she doesn’t get overwhelmed and lose sight of what’s really important. Her appreciating me in this way made me feel – well – wonderful, and more connected to her as we become closer friends.

Whether or not you receive cards or flowers, or (hopefully) chocolate this week, the important thing is how loved and loving you FEEL.

Photo: Lenora Gim

Here are 3 ways a gratitude practice can up the love in your life:

  1. When you practice gratitude, you start to notice the little things other people do for you that you may have previously overlooked. By slowing down and remembering all the things that are good in your life through your practice, you naturally find things people do for you showing up on your list. Your husband making you a cup of tea, the waitress remembering that you like lemon with your water, your child giving you an unexpected hug, or your neighbor stopping by with fresh herbs from her garden. Once you begin to notice these things and appreciate them, your heart expands and you feel more loved.
  2. When you are more appreciative of the little things someone does for you, you are more likely to express your appreciation – forming a stronger connection with that person. Sharing how you feel with someone, even if it’s a simple thank you, makes the other person feel appreciated and loved. This exchange opens your heart to giving and you naturally feel more loving.
  3. When you practice gratitude you create a circle of love in which you are the center. As you become more aware of the relationships in your life, you prioritize the people in your life who make you the most happy. Surrounding yourself with these people allows even more love to flow to you. Being open to receiving this love, you in turn share it with those around you creating a circle of love.

Tweet now:
Practicing gratitude creates a circle of love in which you are the center. @Gratitude2Bliss


Please share your thoughts on gratitude and love below! How does practicing gratitude affect the LOVE in YOUR life?

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