Salads Can Be Exciting, too!

I love preparing my foods at home. It is very much a therapeutic art form for me.

I always know when my body craves food from Mother Nature. And when it does, what do I eat? Fruits and vegetables, along with some protein!

There are so many options to eat out there when it comes to salads. But my favorite is when I am preparing it myself. Salads are not just about iceberg lettuce, shredded carrots, sprinkled cheese flakes, and croutons. On top of that, the dressings usually are too rich and creamy with loads of hidden sugars and calories. Instead of the store bought bottled dressings, why not sprinkle some Himalayan sea salt, a little black pepper, and some olive oil and lemon on top of your salads? If you want a little sweetness, just add some honey instead of sugar or simply add some sweet fruits such as watermelon, mangoes, blueberries, or peaches directly on top of your salad.

I love everything and anything fresh and natural.  At the moment, I do not have many options to grow my own fruits and vegetables like I did a few years back.  So I make it a weekly ritual to visit the farmers market and Whole Foods to get my fruits and greens. When I can – which is most of the time – I prefer to cook at home rather than eating out. This way, I am in control of what ingredients go into my meals. Besides, cooking is a therapeutic art form for me, and I very much enjoy it. It is like creating a masterpiece on a plate: rich in chakras, happy colors, and with plenty of variety.

As you know, I consider what I put on my plate to be a reflection of how I live my life and how much I respect my body.  I make sure to give it a lot of loving foods, foods that heal, foods that awaken, and foods that infuse my body with so much life.

When your food looks good, it will taste good.  Who would not want to enjoy a meal that way? More to come on this.

Five Reasons Why You Should Shop At Farmers’ Markets

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Every Sunday morning, you will find me at West End Farmers Market in Alexandria picking up my fruits, veggies and flowers for the up coming week. There are so many reasons why I love shopping at farmers markets – not only does is support local small businesses, but it reminds me of Vietnam and my travels to Europe, Asia, and Mexico where these types of markets are an everyday event. If you are currently not shopping at farmers’ markets, see my top five reasons below why you should.

1. Food is fresh – not like some of the old, moldy, or drab-looking produce you see at the regular grocery stores.

2. The fruits, veggies, and flowers are seasonal, so you get the best of whatever is in season!

3.  You are contributing to your community by directly supporting the local farmers and their families in a challenging economy, and  as a bonus, you know exactly where your food is coming from!

4.  It’s a great way to connect with your local community while meeting new people and learning new things. I always discover something new every time.

5.  It’s good exercise! Walking, talking, and carrying what you buy without the convenience of a shopping cart in the grocery store.  So there is some weight lifting there.  One time, I bought a water melon that was over 6 pounds to carry back home along with every thing else!

Two of my local favorites are Old Town Alexandria on Saturdays and the most famous, DC’s Eastern Market. If you ever see me there, please make sure to come up and say hello.

I hope you like the photos below that I took recently at the Old Town Alexandria market.

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