Eating for Energy

April 8, 2013

  1. Anonymous says:

    Great post, Eryn. It really challenged me. I appreciate you sharing your grocery bill, as that’s a consideration in moving to organic / whole foods. Our family size (6) is double yours, so could be fair to double the bill to $250. Even so, less than I would guess. We were on an organic / whole foods diet in 2005-2006. I worked full time, so we could afford it. We moved off of it when I quit. Medical bills from bad health can far exceed the cost of eating healthfully. My mid-day pick-me-up is most often diet soda and a protein (peanut butter or cheese). Instead, I could (learn how to prepare and…) reach for a fruit / veggie smoothie (and a hard boiled organic egg if the smoothie alone doesn’t cut it – my youngest son loves them, so I already make them often).

    • erynlynum says:

      Great idea! I almost always have hard-boiled eggs on hand in the fridge. Those, and apple slices with peanut butter are my favorite snacks for energy.

      The smoothies are very simple. We don’t use any recipes. We just throw into a blender in this order:
      1) Liquid (usually 100% orange juice)
      2) Fresh fruit and veggies (Often strawberries, spinach, and carrots)
      3) Always a banana
      4) Frozen fruit. Small handful. Pineapple and blueberries are great. Trader Joes sells them at affordable prices.

      The trickiest part is getting your desired consistency. Just keep experimenting and you’ll quickly find what you and the kids like!

  2. Anonymous says:

    Thanks, Eryn! I’m going to try your recipe this week. Love your blog!

  3. Andi says:

    During my psychology class this week we were studying stress which I know I have a lot of and after much research I have come up wih the fact that my body is creating to much stressed induced cortisol. This problem is made worse with caffine. Coffee can increase your cortisol by 30% for up to eighteen hours. I have since started taking vitamine C, B and magnesium to help bring it down but I would like to het these vitamins through my diet if I can. I have stipped drinking coffee…for now but with my crazy schedule finding foods to boost my energy would be super helpful. Thanka for another great blog!

    • Arlene says:

      Hey Andi, since Eryn’s health issue is a lack of cortisol, can you bottle up your extra and share it with her 🙂

    • erynlynum says:

      Hahah, nice solution, mom, 😉 Andi, I’ve been hearing more and more about what you’re talking about–the correlation between coffee and cortisol levels. I think there’s a lot behind it. It makes me wonder why there is not more talk about a correlation between coffee and weight gain. Although, there is much talk about stress raising cortisol levels, and that’s even more significant than coffee. It’s quite irrelevant to me since my body cannot produce cortisol in the first place. Although, I do wonder if coffee “Stresses” my body by making it try to produce cortisol. Gray was doing more research on this topic this morning, and he;s thinking that coffee, plus the physical stress from roofing may be causing his cortisol levels to be too high. A lot to think about, I’m interested to see how you’re cutting out coffee helps you though!

  4. Hi Erin! Thank you for always sharing such excellent recipes! Scott and I made the Warm Spinach Salad with Sausage and Tortellini a couple of weeks ago and LOVED it! New spring staple here at our house. You will have to share that strawberry-chocolate-brownie one, too. 🙂

    My pick me up snack lately is either Greek Yogurt or Cottage Cheese in the afternoon – a great protein fix. I’m always a fan of popcorn, too, and apples and peanut butter are high on the list when I can find GOOD apples. Where do you have luck this time of year?

    • erynlynum says:

      Thanks Abbigail! I’m so glad you enjoyed the spinach salad! I love that one. One of these days I’ll make some tortellini from scratch-it’s a little daunting, though 😉 I haven’t done it before.

      Do you have a Trader Joes store by you? We’ve just started getting our apples from them. I buy 2lb bags for $2.50 ($1.25/lb). They are organic and delicious! They always have Organic Fuji, and sometimes Organic Gala and Pink Lady. I’ve heard Costco also has good organic apples for $1.50/lb, but I haven’t tried them myself yet.

  5. Arlene says:

    Hi Eryn, Dad made cold brewed coffee this week for the first time. Very good – and no coffee maker needed. You can google it, but basically steep the grounds in water over night in the fridge (1 part grounds to 2 parts water). This makes a coffee concentrate that you combine with hot water to make a cup of coffee.

    • erynlynum says:

      Gray has looked into this! Before ordering cold-pressed coffee, he always asks if it’s made that way, or simply hot coffee poured over ice (yuck.) We haven’t tried making it yet, though. Of course, our weather hasn’t warmed up to the point of really needing cold coffee yet, either 🙂

  6. Anonymous says:


  7. Tamara says:

    Maybe you’ve covered this before, but I’m really curious how Zeke does with your healthy food. I have a veeeery picky toddler who only wants to eat carbs and fruit. Apparently this is genetic from his father’s side, but since I always liked veggies and lean protein as a child I am baffled what to do! I know every child is different and some will just be better about eating healthy food than others, but I’m curious if you have any thoughts about toddlers and healthy eating (particularly veggies!)

    Also, I’m guessing you’ve researched caffeine during pregnancy, and I’m curious what you’ve found. All the “experts” seem to disagree!

    • Eryn Lynum says:

      Great questions, Tamara, thanks!

      Zeke is definitely picky. He ate veggies when I made his pureed baby food, but now he won’t touch them. He has this secret sense to be able to tell if something on his plate is a vegetable. Also, he’s really not that experimental with food yet. He mostly lives on whole grains, fruit, and cheese.

      I don’t let myself worry too much about it. His PD said that as long as we are offering veggies, he’ll come along. He’ll begin realizing how much we are enjoying them, and he’ll get curious.

      A few suggestions: Make them exciting. Talk them up “Super Power Carrots”, ect. But also make them tasty. Canned green beans aren’t too promising to impress. Try to incorporate them into things he already likes. For instance, sometimes I can get Zeke to eat spinach by dicing it very small and adding it to his scrambled eggs, or in a cheese tortilla.

      I’m also excited for more opportunity to involve him in our shopping and cooking as he gets older. I’m hoping that since he’ll be two this summer, he might get more excited about our weekly visits to the farmers markets, and all of the colorful displays of produce. I’ll let him pick out some things that he thinks are interesting, then maybe he’ll be more apt to eat it when we get home, especially if he helps prepare it.

      On coffee: I just need it, hahah. I know there is plenty of controversial information out there. I just chose not to stress about it (stress is worse for a growing baby than caffeine, after all). With Zeke I averaged 1 cup of coffee a day. With this pregnancy I’m averaging 1.5 cups. I don’t drink any during my first trimester. For one–it make me sick those early weeks. But also I know that’s the most crucial time of development, so I avoid it until second trimester. However–some days, like today, my body simply tells me it’s not up to coffee. I took a few sips of my coffee this morning and it was making me feel sick, so I just stopped. Listen to your body.

      Hope this helps!

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Raising kids stirs something deep in our souls — an innate knowing that our time is finite. Taking my kids outside in creation, I’m discovering how to stretch our time and pack it to the brim with meaning. God’s creativity provides the riches of resources for teaching the next generation who He is and how He loves us. Join our adventure and discover inspiration and resources for refusing rush, creating habits of rest, living intentionally, and making the most of this beautiful life!

I'm Eryn, Master Naturalist, Author, & Bible Teacher

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