Do you ever work so hard throughout the day that you come home and don’t want to talk to anyone? Even yourself.. you get sick of thinking and talking to yourself in your own head to the point where you just kinda want to sleep? Hell yeah, me too. Its kind of funny actually because -if you know me- I’m wildly extroverted. But hey, we all need some chill time, eh?
Anyhow, I’ve been having a lot of those days…Ones that make this extrovert go total introvert. It’s important to load up on quality protein and nutrients during those days that you are running yourself into the ground, not only for nutritions sake, but also for your mental health!
I’ve been reading an incredible book lately, The Mood Cure by Julia Ross, which talks all about the neurotransmitters in our brain and how they are directly affected and nurtured by certain amino acid chains (building blocks of protein) found in our diet. The book is loaded with citations and scientific evidence proving the necessity of protein for proper brain function, its fascinating! Ross goes into detail about how a lack of protein throughout American’s daily lives has led to a bad-mood epidemic in our country, causing people to be overwhelmingly anxious, depressed, many experiencing a lack of motivation, unwavering moodiness, and a plethora of other “false moods” as she calls them. Since I have always dealt with anxiety, I decided to jump straight into this book’s nutritional advice and DANG I’ve been feeling quite great!! If you have been experiencing moodiness, indecisiveness, anxiety, depression, etc.. I would strongly urge you to not lose hope and to continue educating yourself! This book is incredible. GO BUY IT!
In other news, I just got back from Michigan! What an incredible trip.. it went by way too fast. Speaking of which, the entire summer went by too fast! Its funny how as a kid the summer feels just as long as the school year.. wish that was the reality! Anyhow, MI was incredible and full of good food, as always.
Stu and I lived in Ann Arbor last summer and completed Urban Agriculture research in Detroit, so of course we had to stop in Detroit to visit the coolest organic bodega grocer in all of Michigan, Parker Street Market. David is the owner, and he is the bomb dot com. He moved to Detroit from Brooklyn, NY with $500 and ended up opening this incredible bodega shop that is now full of Detroit made goods and is expanding! We love David.
We also love David’s girlfriend, Caitlin, co-owner of the absolute BEST cold-pressed raw juice company, DROUGHT. Parker Street Market is always loaded with DROUGHT juice, so we had to stock up for the day. You haven’t lived until you’ve tasted some DROUGHT juice!
Sister Pie, a female-owned bakery that started off selling pies at Parker Street Market a year ago, is now across the street from David’s shop and is officially a brick and mortar business! I love seeing entrepreneurs get after it in Detroit, can you tell? Likewise, we bopped on over for some kick ass gluten free-coconut-chocolate chip cookies. YUM.
Stu is getting deep into high milage season for Cross Country training, so we all went out on long bike rides with him while he ran. Friday was a 16 miler and Sunday was a 10 miler! He’s incredible.. it’s hard to keep up riding a bike next to him! Quite a beautiful sight to see such strength, grace, and persistence running alongside you.
We also cooked a decent amount of amazing meals at home in MI, but I didn’t manage to snap many pictures of them. Nothing like the present moment! I did manage to snag a picture of a quick lunch after a long bike ride and sprint intervals as well as our AWESOME home made tequila mules
Now that I’ve made you hungry from all the food pictures and chatter, Heres an incredible summer salad full of nutrients, flavor, and spice:
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1/2 Shallot, diced
- 1 Teaspoon honey
- 1/2 Teaspoon pink salt
- 1/4 Teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 2 bunches of kale, stems removed, finely chopped
- 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1/3 Cup sliced almonds
- 8 dates, pitted & chopped
- 2.5 Ounces shaved parmesan cheese
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, shallot, honey, oil, salt, and red pepper flakes.
- Add the chopped kale and massage the dressing into the kale leaves. Let stand 20 minutes. (Can leave in fridge for up to 1 day at this point if you’d like to make it ahead of time!)
- Add almonds, dates, and parmesan to kale.
- Serve and ENJOY!