Thursday, January 10, 2013

HSH Reboot - Week 1

                 Hey! There's only one more week left of my Health Starts Here reboot. Part of me is really excited to be done, but I'm also not ready to let go of the HSH rules. Here's a list of my successes and challenges.

  • School. and rehearsal When I took the 28-Day Challenge, it was summer and I didn't have to deal with packing a lunch or dinner. This time around, I have to pack a lunch AND a dinner to take to school; I pack a dinner because I need to eat before my rehearsals for Aladdin. These meals have to fit within the HSH guidelines. My mom and I find things to pack, but it's hard to pack something that has a lot of vegetables in it when you're in a hurry. Whenever I get home from rehearsal, I try to eat a bowl of frozen peas (which are DELICIOUS, by the way) to catch up on the servings of vegetables that I missed. However, I've been eating lots of fruit and whole grains.

                  My goals for this last week of the HSH Reboot are to meal plan, eat more vegetables, cook more of the HSH recipes, and create an HSH recipe that I can post here. Meal planning will help me pack interesting, vegetable-y foods for my lunch and dinner, and eating more vegetables will go along with this. I also plan to make some Peanut Butter Brownie Balls ( It isn't a recipe from Whole Foods, but it follows the rules and looks really delicious!

                 Please follow me on Twitter, follow this blog, subscribe to me on YouTube and like the new Facebook page! All of those links are in the sidebar. Stay healthy!


Thursday, January 3, 2013

Health Starts Here Reboot and an Announcement

                Happy New Year! It's the first blog post of 2013. Hopefully, the year will get off to a great start and become one of the best years yet. To start off the New Year, I'm doing something really special - maybe even crazy. I'm going to go back to Health Starts Here! Instead of doing it for 28 days, I'm going to do it for 14 and call it a "reboot". Health Starts Here didn't stick with me as much as I wish it could have, and I want to straighten out my eating habits again. They weren't bad in comparison to other eating habits (like my brother, who only eats six or seven things), but they were below my expectations of myself and I'd like to get back on track.

                For those of you who don't know, Health Starts Here is a program through Whole Foods that promotes healthy eating. You take a 28-day challenge in which you eat completely Health Starts Here (or your version of Health Starts Here, depending on what you think you can accomplish). The Health Starts Here guidelines are as follows: no dairy, no eggs, only whole-grains, no refined sugars (honey is okay, but white sugar, agave nectar, maple syrup, artificial sweeteners and more are not okay), lean meats in small portions (you can choose a vegan route, but I haven't done that before), no oil, and to eat LOTS of fruits and vegetables. If this sounds a little ridiculous to you, that's normal. I explained all about Health Starts Here when I took the challenge in July. Read that post (, or you can learn more at the Health Starts Here website (

                During these two weeks of Health Starts Here, I will face some challenges, but I have experience on my side. One of the challenges I'll face is school. When I did the 28-Day Challenge, school was out and I wasn't in any musicals yet (by the way, I'm a theatre kid). This time, I have to deal with packing a Health Starts Here lunch for school every day and eating a Health Starts Here dinner before my rehearsals for Aladdin. During the 28-Day Challenge, I had to figure out how to cope with HSH (Health Starts Here) food while camping and at a friend's birthday party. This time, I'll have to figure out how to order something at a restaurant that follows the HSH guidelines; I'm going ice skating and out to dinner with my Girl Scout troop this weekend. My HSH Reboot starts tomorrow. Wish me luck!

               My Christmas was awesome. Among other presents, I got lots of clothes, new shoes, UGG slippers, a griddle, new knives and a new cutting board! On Christmas Day, I made Italian paninis with pesto, spinach, mozzarella and tomatoes on ciabatta bread for my family, and I used my new griddle. We've also used the griddle to sear tofu, make hash-browns, and cook pancakes. Hopefully, the griddle will be yet another tool that I can use to help me get through the HSH Reboot.

The panini I made on Christmas with my new griddle!

               Now for that huge announcement! Teens Can Cook, Too now has a Facebook page! I don't have too many likes yet since the page is only a few days old. Please hit "like" to show your support for me! It only takes a second to do so, but it really supports my mission in improving the food system and raising awareness amongst teens about food. Every "like" means so much to m. You can like Teens Can Cook, Too on Facebook by clicking this link:

              Please follow this blog, follow me on Twitter, like the new Facebook page, subscribe to me on YouTube and email me! It only takes a few seconds to show your support for Teens Can Cook, Too. All of my information is in the sidebar (in the online resources section). I posted a new poll asking whether you'd like to join me in the HSH Reboot. If enough people are interested in doing it with me, I will respond in my later posts! Also, I posted a video about local food last week. If you missed it, you can watch it here: Stay healthy and Happy New Year!