Review Category : Health

Getting to know someone in a forced social setting is awkward. I’m talking about the dreaded D word here – dating. The typical date lineup is usually dinner and a movie, but neither of those activities are appropriate breeding grounds for comfort and/or stimulating conversation. During dinner, you are trying to juggle somewhat intelligent banter with clearing the spinach from your teeth. During a movie, well you aren’t talking at all, so you basically forked over a bunch of cash to sit next to a stranger for 90 minutes and at the end of the evening, they are still a stranger.

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So you’re vegan, and your partner isn’t. Or maybe your an omnivore, or a vegetarian, and your partner is a vegan. Or maybe you’re an everything eater and your partner is gluten-free. Or maybe you’re gluten-free and your partner is allergic to nuts, or soy, or dairy, or…

See where I’m going with this? Sometimes our dietary restrictions (and ethical POVs) just don’t match up with the views of the people we like to spend our time with.

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Summer is over, and fall is here. The change of season can make you a little wonky; You’re just getting into that summertime routine and then BAM, days are short again and you need a jacket. When your schedule is out of whack, you may not be making the healthiest of choices, and your sex drive may suffer for it. Below are a handful of health-don’t's guaranteed to stall that “it’s chilly so let’s build a fire…a pants fire” feeling.

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I ate mine over greens. Manfriend had pasta.

I ate mine over greens. Manfriend had pasta.

Fall is nearly here. While it’s still balmy in Hawai’i, my East Coast heart must be able to feel the chill from 5000 miles away. Last week I was craving something hearty. Something…stewy. Something tomatoey. Here is what I came up with!

Lentil Bolognese

  • 1 cup uncooked green lentils
  • 2 cups veggie stock or water
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced small
  • 1 small carrot, diced small
  • 1 stalk celery, diced small
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon basil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 8 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup good red wine. (If you wouldn’t drink it, don’t cook with it.)
  • 8 oz pasta. Choose your fav!
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40daysofdating-02Yesterday was a day I got nothing accomplished. Okay, well in full disclosure, I am an Aries so “nothing accomplished” means maybe I got a lot done but not all that I WANTED to do. (Reminder: Live with intention and not expectation.)

Now that the film has wrapped, I am embarking on another huge project, but for some reason all I could do yesterday was troll the Internet. I watched #SolidarityIsForWhiteWomen take over Twitter, which was truly enlightening. And I also stumbled on 40 Days of Dating.

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Not what I meant by “phone sex” …

We all know how attached we are to our phones. However, a study came out last week with results that will startle even the most technologically obsessed among us: 1 out of every 10 people surveyed use their phone during sex. For those of us who are mathematically challenged, that is10 percent. And what is more alarming is that those surveyed whose ages are between 18 and 34, the number rises to 5 out of 10. FIFTY PERCENT!

I will say it again. Using the phone, DURING sex. This gives a whole new meaning to “sexting.”

Unless there is some sort of amazing vibe app that I’m unaware of, or you’re getting some raw action footage, phones should never be allowed on the bed—or any surface—where penetration is happening simultaneously. Live Tweeting should never be used to describe a money shot.

I seriously cannot fathom how this can be possible. Nobody wants to see your post-O selfie. The only reason phones are acceptable while in bed with someone else is if you are:

  • Watching porn.
  • Making porn.

That is it. According to the 2013 Mobile Consumer Habits study released by Harris Interactive, 12 percent of peeps use their phone in the shower, and 75 percent cop to being within 5 feet of their phones at all times.

I get it. I have been known to fall asleep while Instagramming and wake up still spooning my (now dead) electronic bundle of joy. But during sex? Really?

Even for those of us who don’t have their phone in one hand and a D in the other, it’s probably safe to say that at some point our tech addiction—that need to feel connected to the outside world—has gotten in the way of our intimacy.

Opportunities for conversation are often gobbled up by the multiple feeds we have going on at once. How many times have you scrolled through Facebook while sitting next to someone at the table? What starts as an opportunity to snap a quick pic of my meal during a casual dinner at home (foodie problems) turns into me taking the photo, finding the perfect filter, posting it to Instagram, scrolling through my friends’ feeds and then—what? What’s that? My boyfriend is already up and doing the dishes? Damn.

In fact, iPhones turned face down and placed on the table have become such a staple at dinner that companies are creating high-fashion covers so that your phone can act as an accessory while you eat.

How do we battle this? I love my phone just as much as the rest of my generation, so I’m right there with you. Plus, I live in a studio apartment, so a “no phones in the bedroom” rule wouldn’t make any sense. My entire house is the bedroom. And the kitchen. And the office. And the—you get my point.

Here are a few remedies you can try for weening yourself off of your phone during social time:

  • If you don’t live in one large room, have a “no phones in the bedroom” rule. This may mean you have to go get an old school alarm clock, but if it means you end up having more sex, then it’s probably worth it.
  • During dinner, follow the phone stacking trend; When eating with people, everyone stack their phones in the center of the table so that they are forced to converse face-to-face and aren’t able to stealthily check for news from that guy they met in the Hamptons last weekend who still hasn’t texted.
  • There is also a phone stacking game where you stack your phones with the ringer on and as the texts/emails/calls come in, you have to resist temptation. The first person who breaks down to check their gadget has to pay the tab/wash the dishes/get naked, etc.
  • Phones for feet. After dinner, my guy and I like to decompress on the couch. Often this means sitting in silence for 30 minutes while we troll Instagram. Instead, trade your phone in for your partner’s foot. I would rather get and give a foot rub then look at a photo of my ex-roommates sub sandwich or their #tbt photos from Cabo.

Tell me, how do you battle phones interfering with your connection? Have you ever used your phone during sex for a reason that had nothing to do with documenting yourself? I need to find this elusive fifty percent!

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securedownload-7Aloha friends. We are currently 2 days into production of Courtesy Flush, and things have been crazy around here. Luckily, we have an awesome vegan chef on board—Andrew Johnson aka the Vegan Giant—so we all have been munching well. I have been reveling in my lack of dishes.

However, I would like to share with you one of the last things I whipped up before my cast and crew arrived and things got so nutty: Island-Style Purple Sweet Potato Salad. We went to a BBQ at our neighbor’s, and they made an awesome Okinawan potato salad using avocado. It was so delicious, and the color of the Okinawan potatoes made it just as beautiful as it was tasty. This is my rendition. Did I mention how healthy it is?

Island-Style Purple Sweet Potato Salad

Serves 6

  • 2 pounds Okinawan sweet potatoes, scrubbed
  • 1 large ripe avocado
  • 2 tablespoons vegan mayonnaise
  • ½ cup shredded coconut
  • ¼ cup raisins (optional)
  • Juice of 1 lime

 To make:

1. Boil sweet potatoes for 15 minutes or until tender. Stick in fridge for 1 hour to cool.
2. Cube potatoes. Add avocado, mayo, and lime juice. Mix well.
3. Add shredded coconut and raisins.

Enjoy!

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securedownload-3Summer is the time for smoothies. This one is a recent creation, and offers a new twist on a childhood favorite. PB & J in a glass? Yes please! The key ingredient that makes it taste like peanut butter and jelly is using salted peanuts instead of peanut butter. Go figure.

 

Peanut Butter and Jelly Smoothie

Serves 2

 You Will Need

- 1 large frozen banana
- 1 cup frozen mixed berries (strawberries, blackberries, blueberries, etc)
- 1 cup vanilla non-dairy milk ( I like hemp or almond for this one)
- ½ cup salted dry roasted peanuts

Optionals:
- 1 tsp of spirulina. This will negate the lovely purple color of your drink, but it will give you some iron and b12. Decide how important it is for your smoothie to be aesthetically alluring.

- 1 scoop of vanilla protein powder. Protein powders are a slippery slope, as most of them contain all kinds of crazy weird junk and GMOs and a zillion grams of sugar. I do, however, like Sunwarrior Classic Raw Protein in vanilla. It is naturally sweetened, and doesn’t have a weird chalky flavor because it’s soy-free. Also, my boyfriend says it makes smoothies “taste like donuts.”
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To Make

Put it all in a blender and have at it. Add a bit more non-dairy milk if needed, depending on how thick you like it, and how good of a blender you have.
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