We are featuring many of the recipes we serve at Mountain Trek. Prepare delicious spa cuisine in your own kitchen.

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Vietnamese Salad with Steak

Vietnamese Salad with Steak Recipe

Barbecue season has arrived and with it comes delicious grilling recipes such as the one below that incorporates Vietnamese salad, a yummy take on a traditional green salad that incorporates a chilli-seasoned dressing. Invite your friends over and serve them the following and they’ll be sure to talk about it for weeks afterwards.

If steak isn’t your preference, you can swap the protein out for free-range organic chicken or the vegetarian selection of your choice, such as tofu or even portobello mushrooms. (Just be sure to include protein-rich vegetables in the salad such as spinach or broccoli.) The following amounts are enough to serve 8 people.

 

Marinade & Dressing Ingredients

  • 1⁄4 c. tamari
  • 1⁄4 c. grapeseed oil
  • 1/2 c. lime juice – freshly squeezed
  • 1⁄4 c. water
  • 4 tbsp sugar – raw
  • 4 tbsp minced garlic
  • 4 tsp chili paste

Whisk together all the above ingredients. Use 1/4 cup for marinade and the rest for salad dressing.

 

Steak preparation:

Get the best-quality organic sirloin steak – we recommend serving about five ounces of steak for each guest. Marinade the steak for a minimum of 30 minutes. If using a plate or glass bowl to marinade, be sure to turn halfway through marinating time.

Use barbecue to cook stead until its medium rare. Let rest 5 minutes and then slice thinly at an angle. Alternatively cut the steak and place on skewers before barbecuing.

Salad Ingredients: 

  • 8 c. mixed greens
  • 1 c. fresh basil leaves – julienned
  • 1 c. fresh cilantro – julienned
  • 2 c. red onion – finely diced
  • 6 c. snap peas
  • 6 c. English cucumbers – with peel – julienned
  • 6 c. carrots – julienned – blanched
  • Cashews dry roasted – unsalted (for topping) – chopped

 

Mix greens, basil and cilantro, onion, cucumber, snap peas, and carrots. Top with sliced steak and drizzle salad dressing over top. Sprinkle with chopped toasted cashews.

Cinnamon Granola Recipe

Recipe for Cinnamon Granola

This delicious, gluten-free Cinnamon Granola recipe is perfect for breakfast because it’s easy to make and can be stored for weeks. The ingredient list below is enough to make eight servings.

Ingredients:

2 ¼ cups rolled oats (certified gluten free)
¼ cup slivered almonds
¼ cup pumpkin seeds
½ cup sunflower seeds
2 tbsp grapeseed oil
2 tbsp maple syrup
¼ tsp almond extract
½ tbsp pure vanilla extract
1 tbsp cinnamon

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 325°F
  • Mix grains, nuts and seeds together on a large baking tray
  • Combine remaining ingredients together in a saucepan and heat briefly
  • Pour over nut/oat mixture and toss well to coat
  • Bake for 45 minutes until lightly toasted. Stir every 15 minutes to brown evenly
  • Cool before storing in airtight container

A Full Day of Spa Cuisine Recipes

Spa-CuisineThere has been a lot of talk about “spa cuisine” in the past year and some people are questioning just exactly what the phrase means. Some assume it’s vegetarian or flavorless or served in tiny qualities. Others wonder if it’s new-age “superfood” or supplemental vitamins. In actual fact, spa cuisine can include meat, it’s delicious and, at Mountain Trek, it’s served in perfect portions at the right times during the day so your body doesn’t crave non-essential foods. From a scientific perspective, spa cuisine utilizes the natural elements, nutrients, and minerals in food to assist the body so that it can function at an optimal level of vitality. In layman’s terms, it looks colorful and tastes delicious! You’ll find little-to-no processed or refined ingredients in spa cuisine, and in many instances, a lot of what you’ll be consuming is locally grown or raised and seasonally appropriate. At Mountain Trek, you’ll discover that every single one of our meals is well-balanced and amazingly tasty. In fact, we have an on-site nutritionist who ensures the ideal amount of protein, carbohydrates, fruits, and vegetables are consumed throughout the day, and at specific times of day, while our chef is always discovering new and delicious ways to prepare the dishes. To learn more about meal composition and timings read our Healthy Eating Tips blog. But if you’re looking for a daily sample of delicious spa cuisine, we’ve included three recipes below for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Bon Appétit!

Breakfast

Manna Bread Breakfast RecipeManna Bread Breakfast

Manna Bread is made with whole sprouted grain berries and pure water – a far cry from the heavily processed bread you find in most supermarkets. Manna bread can come in rye or multigrain or varieties and is available at your local health food store. Loaves tend to be smaller but that’s because Manna Bread is more dense and filling. At Mountain Trek, we’ll typically serve men three half-inch slice in the morning while women receive two slices. Women’s portion – serve with:

  • 2 slices smoked cheese (equaling ½ oz. or 14 grams)
  • 2 slices avocado
  • 3 slices tomato
  • 1 tbsp almond butter
  • Alfalfa sprouts

Men’s portion – serve with:

  • 3 slices smoked cheese (equaling ¾ oz. or 21 grams)
  • 3 slices avocado
  • 3 slices tomato
  • 1 tbsp almond butter
  • Alfalfa sprouts

Lunch

Kootenay Mushroom Barley Lentil Soup

Kootenay Mushroom Barley Lentil Soup

This recipe tastes best when you use freshly picked mushrooms from the forest floor, like we do at Mountain Trek. Whatever mushrooms you use, though, this recipe (which serves 4) will be sure to delight and fulfill.

Ingredients:

  • 1 ¼ cup yellow onions, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 tsp grapeseed oil
  • 2 cups mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 cup celery, sliced
  • 1 cup carrots, finely chopped
  • 2 cup spinach
  • 1/3 cup barley
  • 2 ½ tbsp red lentils
  • 2 ½ tbsp sherry
  • ¾ tsp fresh rosemary
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • ¾ tsp paprika
  • ¾ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp thyme
  • 3 ½ cups veggie stock
  • 1 whole bay leaf
  • 2 ½ tbsp parsley
  • ½ tbsp Bragg’s or tamari sauce
  • 2 tbsp flax oil
  • 1/8 tsp cayenne

Directions:

  • Heat oil and butter in a large soup pan.
  • Add onions, celery, carrots, and sauté until translucent.
  • Add mushrooms and garlic and sauté until translucent.
  • Add barley, lentils and spices and sauté for 10 minutes.
  • Add stock and let cook over medium heat for approximately 30 minutes or until the barley is done.
  • Add Bragg’s, sherry, flax oil, and parsley.
  • At Mountain Trek, our portions are typically two cups for men and 1.5 cups for women.

Dinner

The Kootenay Bowl

The Kootenay Bowl

This easy-to-make dish is as colorful as it is delicious. It serves four.

Tofu + Marinade:

  • 1 ½ blocks (600 grams) herbed tofu, cubed. (By freezing, thawing, and then squeezing the excess water from the tofu its texture changes, allowing it to absorb the marinade.)
  • 2½ tbsp tamari
  • 2½ tbsp grapeseed oil
  • 2½ tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ¼ – ½ tsp. rosemary powder
  • Blend the above ingredients and marinate cubed tofu in it for at least 2 hours before cooking.
  • Reserve some marinade for cooking tofu.

Dressing:

  • 2 tbsp nutritional yeast flakes
  • 2½ tbsp water
  • 2½ tbsp tamari sauce
  • 2½ tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp grapeseed oil
  • 1 tbsp tahini Blend above ingredients and serve on the side.

The Bowl:

  • ½ cup quinoa cooked in 1 ¼ cup water
  • 4 cup mixed greens
  • ½ cup beets, grated
  • ½ cup carrots, grated
  • ½ cup red cabbage, shredded very fine
  • 4 large cherry tomatoes, halved 2 tbsp sunflower seeds, toasted 4 pinches alfalfa sprouts
  • Rinse quinoa well and cook until tender (about 12-15 minutes).
  • Sauté tofu in a small amount of the marinade until browned on all sides.
  • Place greens on the bottom of each bowl, put quinoa on top of that, then add rows of carrots, beets, and red cabbage.
  • Sprinkle with sunflower seeds; add tofu, sprouts, and tomatoes.
  • At Mountain Trek we serve the following portions: women receive 7 cubes of tofu, 1/4 cup of cooked quinoa and 1 1/2 tbsp of dressing; men receive 9 cubes of tofu, 1/3 cup cooked quinoa and 2 tbsp of dressing.

To find more Mountain Trek recipes and to get the shopping list for these recipes, download our Habits 2 Health App now.

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10 “Non-Diet” Weight Loss Tips and Simple Holiday Detox Ideas

a woman in a red coat in a winter wonderland

The “Non-Diet” Approach to Weight Loss

Mountain Trek does not subscribe to any diet plan. In fact, we don’t believe in the concept of dieting at all; yet we guarantee those who participate in our program will lose weight. And they always do. Why is that?  It starts with the food we eat. So what’s the secret?

Have you ever stopped to wonder why there are so many fad diets out there? The fact is, none of them work, certainly not for any length of time anyway. So many of us binge and then starve our bodies, only to repeat the cycle, that it’s no wonder we have trouble maintaining a healthy consistent weight. Problems such as obesity, diabetes, and heart disease are all a result of improper eating practices combined with lack of physical activity for which our bodies were designed for.

At Mountain Trek, we’re not interested in short-term efforts for losing weight but rather we want to encourage a long-term lifestyle change for lasting health. A large part of it rests on the nutritional pillar of our program, which isn’t so much based on counting calories as it is about encouraging healthy eating patterns. We focus on balancing blood sugars, and the hormones Insulin, Glucagon, Leptin, and Grehlin, in order to raise and maintain an Anabolic metabolism. Which is just one way of saying, we teach you about healthy eating habits that transform your health. Our guests learn how to “diet” without actually going on a diet; along with the support-structure and strategies for turning them into long-term habits.

10 Weight Loss Tips

1. Eat Breakfast within 30 minutes of getting out of bed

a bowl of yogurt granola and blueberries on a wooden table

2. Eat two-thirds of your food in the first 9 hours of the day

Steaming Bowl of Soup

3. Eat multiple food groups every 3 hours during the day

a wooden box of apples grapes walnuts and almonds

4. Eat slower and chew more

a person eating an apple in a kitchen

5. Eat out at restaurants less

a couple cooking a meal together

6. Lower your intake of alcohol

three clear glass tea pots of tea

7. Eliminate or minimize artificial sweeteners

a jar of honey

8. Detoxify your body regularly (see below)

a woman in an infrared sauna detoxing

9. Eat less processed food and more organic produce

Fresh, local and organic produce

10. Drink more water

a person drinking water from a water bottle


Detox

Detox Your Body This Month

If you read our tips for relieving holiday stress, chances are you’re feeling fit, healthy, and happy. However, if you’re like most of us, you indulged a bit during the holiday season and are now looking to get back on track. Well, aside from the weight-loss pointers mentioned above, there’s one other key thing you can do in order to encourage wellness and lose a few of those extra pounds that might have crept on what with all the holiday chocolates lying around. And the good news is that one thing is relatively easy to do.

Related Article: Hot Springs Benefits

Detoxification has been a tradition among most cultures on earth for centuries. From Scandinavian saunas to American sweat lodges, mankind has understood the value of purging toxins through the skin. Essentially, the term refers to the process of removing injurious substances from our bodies, which can be biological (such as bacteria and viruses) or harmful chemicals like heavy metals, food processing compounds, and cosmetics. (Nowadays processed foods contain more than 3,000 chemicals whereas at the turn of the century, the only preservative found in food was salt.) These toxins are continuously being flushed from our body through breath, sweat, urine, etc but problems arise if we can’t detoxify fast enough. What happens when we don’t purge these toxins quickly, our fat cells will get larger so the body can store the excess toxins and keep them safely away from sensitive tissue.  When the toxins are more concentrated, our fat cells will also increase in size to keep them diluted.

In other words, detoxing is not only good for riding the body of bad biology and chemicals, it’s also a good way to ensure your body doesn’t start harboring fat cells.

Here are just a few easy actions you can take to support your body in detoxifying

  • Drink enough water throughout the day so that your urine is almost clear. This will help support your kidney’s removal of water-soluble toxins.
  • Utilize exercise, saunas, and steams to aid the release of stored toxins.
  • Dry brushing your skin is another good way to encourage blood circulation, cell regeneration and toxin removal.
  • Eat fibre-rich foods to aid your intestines in moving toxins out of the body.  Constipation leads to toxin re-absorption.
  • Eat organic, pesticide-free produce, and less processed food.

What is Mountain Trek?

Mountain Trek is the health reset you’ve been looking for. Our award-winning health retreat, immersed in the lush nature of British Columbia, will help you detox, unplug, recharge, and roll back years of stress and unhealthy habits. To learn more about the retreat, and how we can help you reset your health, please email us at info@mountaintrek.com or reach out below:

7 Crucial Healthy Eating Tips and 5 Easy Nutrition Tips

a woman eating an apple with words tips for staying healthy

Wake up groggy – Coffee – Commute to office – Coffee – Quick lunch at desk – Chocolate/Coffee to spike low energy – Commute home – Huge dinner – Watch TV – Sleep – Wake up groggy

Sound familiar? This vicious cycle can be a hard one to break. Perhaps you’ve tried diets or removing certain food groups from your meals in order to lose weight and be energized throughout your day. Or maybe you’ve swung the other direction and are addicted to certain foods and can’t get through a day without them. Like coffee for example.

Let’s take a step back and look at the types of food you’re eating, and how you’re consuming them. Our modern-day culture stresses what kinds of food to eat, but few are concentrating on meal timing. How, and when you eat also has an impact on your overall health. It’s more important than ever to stress some key healthy eating tips

7 Crucial Tips for Healthy Eating

a blueberry smoothing in a jar with the words Meal Timings

Meal Timings

1. Eat Breakfast Within 30 Minutes of Waking

If you take nothing else away from this article, remember one thing: eat breakfast within 30 minutes of waking up. Even if it’s just an Energy Smoothie. With the prevalence put on coffee these days, most of us wake up and have a cup of joe–or several. And, because caffeine is an appetite suppressant, we go the entire morning without eating. The problem with this scenario is your body reacts by thinking it’s being starved and builds up fat cells. Fall into a habit of this and quite quickly it becomes too hard to shed weight because the body is always worried about when the next meal will come. The simple solution is to eat some form of food within a half-hour of waking. After breaking your fast first-thing in the morning, you will:

  • Kick-start your metabolism for the day
  • Be supporting your circadian rhythm and will have more energy
  • Keep your liver from initiating the “famine” response

We know that a warm cup of coffee is very comforting, especially as the cold weather settles in, but consider trying alternatives like ginger tea, which helps cleanse the liver rather than tax it, or perhaps a barley-based coffee substitute like Bambu or Akava. At the very least, try lessening your coffee intake by just have one a morning after your first meal or smoothie.

2. Eat two-thirds of your food in the first nine hours of the day 

This is an issue that’s especially prevalent in North America where we tend to consume coffee during the day and then have a huge meal right before we watch TV and fall asleep. The issue with this scenario is the body doesn’t have the ability to work off all those extra calories while sleeping so it tends to store them all as fat. By eating most of your food during the first half of your day you:

  • Allow your body to burn off those calories by walking and being active 
  • Reduce your evening blood sugar levels so insulin doesn’t store the excess as fat

This may seem difficult to do at first because large dinners can seem so satisfying, but just try it for a little while and we’re positive your energy levels will increase in the morning.

3. Eat Every 3 hours

Not only will you benefit from eating within the first nine hours of your day, but you will also feel better if you consume multiple food groups every three hours. By snacking regularly you convince the body you’re not starving and it will be less likely to store fat. Let’s preface this, however, by saying that a snack does not include an entire bag of Doritos. All you need is a piece of fruit and a handful of seeds or nuts or any of our top 5 on-the-go-snacks to keep your energy up. And by eating throughout the day you will:

  • Maintain level blood sugar and avoid insulin spikes in response to large meals
  • Avoid the “famine” response that results in fat storage from skipping meals
  • Avoid energy drops associated with low blood sugar that tends to have us craving coffee, chocolate, or another caffeine source

a basket of vegetables with the words Meal Composition

Meal Composition

As mentioned above, meal timing is important. But we also must consider what food, and how much of it, we consume.

It’s crucial to combine multiple food groups at each meal and snack. So whether you get your protein from meat, beans, or certain leafy greens, you should be eating it at every meal. Avoid store-bought protein bars, which contain empty calories among other things. Try our delicious homemade protein bars instead. 

Along with your protein, be sure to include complex carbohydrates, vegetables, and fruit. Think slow-cooked oatmeal, not white bread, and most cereals that consist of refined sugars and simple carbohydrates. 

We should also stress it’s important to include a wide variety of local, fresh, organic, and unprocessed foods. Stay away from the center aisles at the grocery store. And if you’re eating animal protein, choose organic, wild, or free-range that are free of hormones and antibiotics. Here is how we break down our meals at Mountain Trek:

4. Equal Volumes at Breakfast

At breakfast, we recommend equal volumes of complex carbohydrates, protein, vegetables, or fruit. As well as a teaspoon of omega oil and a small amount of dairy (substitute if you’re allergic or have an intolerance). By combining these items you benefit by:

  • Supporting a “glycemic load,” which contributes to a longer, slower release of blood sugars and avoiding insulin spikes
  • Getting important minerals, vitamins, and phytochemicals, which do the body wonders especially first thing in the morning
  • The high fiber from complex carbohydrates provides chromium to help regulate blood sugars and it creates a sense of fullness, lowering appetite

5. Two-Thirds Vegetables at Lunch

Your lunch should be two-thirds vegetables and one-third protein with a small dairy component or substitute.

6. One-Half Vegetables, One-Quarter Protein, One-Quarter Complex Carbs at Dinner

Your dinner plate should be one-half vegetables, one-quarter complex carbohydrates, and one-quarter protein with a small dairy component or substitute. This is because:

  • Higher vegetable portions provide antioxidants, fiber, and phytochemicals to support active, growth-centered metabolism (salads, soups, steamed or sautéed)
  • Fewer dinner calories reduce the chance of fat storage
  • It promotes a healthy appetite for breakfast

7. Soul Food

At Mountain Trek, we believe in feeding the body AND feeding the soul. Therefore, we don’t expect you to follow this eating program to the letter. If you can try to eat like the way we detail above five days of the week and allow yourself two days to consume what we call “soul foods” you’ll be happier, and that has a huge impact on your health as well!


Support Healthy Eating With These Easy Nutrition Tips

Aside from the seven suggestions above about when and how to eat, these five easy-to-implement nutrition tips will help increase your vitality and support your health.

a woman drinking water with the words Drink your food; eat your water

Drink Your Food; Eat Your Water

In other words, eat slower, chew more, and swish your water around in your mouth before you swallow. This will help initiate the breakdown of carbohydrates with saliva enzymes and ease digestion. You will also allow time for the vagus nerve to communicate when you’re full, thereby avoiding overeating.

a woman feeding a man pasta sauce from a wooden spoon with the words Eat Out Less

Eat Out Less

We all love restaurants but there’s a reason their food tastes so good: lots of butter, oil, sugar and salt. By visiting fewer restaurants you’ll avoid oversized portions, lots of empty calories, and fat. We’re not saying to avoid restaurants entirely, but perhaps limit it to once-a-week or special occasions.

someone holding a mug and saucer with the words Drink Less Alcohol

Drink Less Alcohol

It’s especially important to avoid more alcohol as the cold weather and holidays approach. All alcohol has empty calories (even the ones marketed as being free of carbs) and when combined with excessive eating around the holidays, it’s a one-two punch that will guarantee weight gain. We’re not saying don’t drink at all, just limit binge drinking and consider only drinking at mealtimes to help your liver process.

grapes on a white plate with the words Minimize Artificial Sweeteners

Minimize Artificial Sweeteners

This means limiting (or better yet, eliminating) sodas, energy drinks, candy, and all the toxins associated with them. If you want a treat, consider having chocolate that contains 80% cocoa or better yet sweet fruit like dates. We can’t stress this enough because, ultimately, artificial sweeteners fall into the category of really bad foods given their poisonous qualities.

a white ceramic dish filled with eggs with the words Explore the Sour Eight

Explore Your Sensitivity to the “Sour Eight”

The Sour Eight are wheat, corn, dairy, soy, sugar, eggs, alcohol, and peanuts and the majority of the population has some form of sensitivity to at least one of these. Sensitivities could range from full-blown allergies to mild discomfort. But by taking time to remove one of these from your diet for a month, you could avoid constipation, bloating, excess mucus, fatigue, headaches, water retention, and most shockingly of all, you could eliminate 5-15 pounds of water retention in your bowels! 

Try it! Start with peanuts and see how you feel after a month. You may not notice a difference in which case move on to eggs and then work towards the others, which you’ll find are a little more difficult to eliminate as they’re so omnipotent. But ultimately isn’t your health and vitality worth it?


What is Mountain Trek?

Mountain Trek is the health reset you’ve been looking for. Our award-winning retreat, immersed in the lush nature of British Columbia, will help you unplug, recharge, and roll back years of stress and unhealthy habits. To learn more about the retreat, and how we can help you reset your health, please email us at info@mountaintrek.com or reach out below:

10+ Tips to Keep Well and Active as the Cold Weather Approaches

Autumn Hiking at Mountain Trek

When winter sets in, the days get shorter, the thermometer drops, and our bodies enter into what was, traditionally, a time of dormancy. Before the industrial revolution, we humans would spend the winter months in a state of quiescence – there was very little farming, hunting, or gathering to be done so we’d slow down and conserve our fat stores. These days, our bodies are still programmed to a certain amount of inaction during the colder months but, unlike the past, we now have plenty of fatty and processed foods to snack on during that time.

Tips to avoid unhealthy snacking and remain well and active during winter

1. Avoid Drinking More Coffee

Morning Ginger Tea

With cooler temperatures comes the desire to drink hot drinks and the most prevalent, especially in the Western world, is coffee. However comforting that cup of Joe is on a cool day, however, one must remember the harmful effects of caffeine. There is a proven relationship between caffeine and weight gain. Continuous consumption of it leads to prolonged levels of cortisol in the bloodstream, which has a negative effect on metabolism, blood sugar levels, and blood pressure. Instead of drinking more coffee, consider other hot drink alternatives such as a detoxifying and energizing morning ginger tea.

2. Avoid More Alcohol

Avoid Alcohol

As we enter months where the nights are longer, we as a species are driven to socialize more in the evenings. And in our modern world, that typically means there is more alcohol on offer. We at Mountain Trek are not abolitionists by any stretch but we think it’s important to stress alcohol’s relationship to weight gain. All alcohol has calories (even the ones marketed as being free of carbs) and so by consuming more, you’re adding to your fat stores. In the case of alcohol, this is doubly taxing because it stresses your liver and impairs its ability to flush toxins. Imbibe in the occasional drink but considering capping of the evening with a nightcap of #3.

3. Drink More Water

Drink More Water

Last year we wrote a post about water versus soda pop and one of the most interesting facts about the lack of water was that it is the number one trigger of daytime fatigue. As we enter the longer, colder months, our bodies tend to want to slow down and lethargy is more prevalent – drinking a few glasses of water easily rectifies that. Plus it helps you flush toxins and curb hunger pangs.

4. Get a Good Nights Sleep

Get a Good Night's Sleep

As the nights get longer our bodies respond by desiring a bit more shut-eye. Although our bodies require between seven and nine hours of sleep a night, there are many sleep problems that are preventing some of us from getting that. The good news is there are easy things you can do to ensure a good night’s rest. In this post, we list seven tricks but the most important is to make your bedroom a work-free and gadget-free zone. Leave all electronic devices outside the bedroom and enjoy some shut-eye unhampered by bells, lights, and agendas.

5. Go For a Soak

Go for a Soak

This one is easy, especially as the colder months set in: find yourself a bathtub, hot tub or hot spring and just lie there. That’s it. There are many therapeutic benefits to a good soak but the main one is relaxation; the power of de-stressing is not to be underestimated, especially because balanced hormones lead to balanced health.

6. Get Massaged

Massage

As with #5, this one isn’t that difficult either. There are reasons most cultures on earth have offered some form of massage for thousands of years: not only is it relaxing, it’s also good for your health. In fact, an evening massage is one of the best ways to relax after the day’s activities. It will help prepare you for a restful night’s sleep.

7. Enlist the Help of a Friend

Enlist the help of a friend

In another blog post we listed seven reasons why you should work out with a friend and these apply that much more in the cooler months when it’s easy for us to justify sitting in front of the TV under a blanket instead of getting up and moving. A friend will help keep you accountable but will also make fitness that much more fun.

8. Exercise – Even Just a Little

Exercise

It goes without saying that we here at Mountain Trek are big fans of exercise, no matter what time of year it is. We also appreciate, however, that when the cooler weather sets in, it can be harder to get motivated. That’s why we’ve compiled some tips to help beat sedentarism some of which are as easy as doing stretches in your office doorway. Remember, though, that to keep your metabolism up and your weight down, your body has to move for at least 40 minutes a day, even if it’s just a brisk walk around the block.

9. Show Yourself Some Love

Show Yourself Some Love

There are many ways to pamper yourself but the best is to do something you enjoy. It seems like such a simple thing and yet many of us work so hard, by the end of the day we only have energy to sit in front of the TV. Take time in the coming months to do something that recharges your batteries: read a good book by the fire, indulge in a hobby or attend a class. You’ll find you’ll be happier and have more energy to face the cooler weather and shorter days.

10. Book a Stay with Mountain Trek

Book your stay at Mountain Trek

The best way to pamper yourself is to dedicate a vacation to you and your health. Join us in autumn at our gorgeous lodge in British Columbia where you’ll enjoy the pristine mountains and hang out with like-minded friends by the fire, in the natural hot springs, or in our spa.

Related Article: Beating the Winter Blues

Where Do I get my Vitamin D?

When UV rays from sunlight touch the skin, this triggers Vitamin D synthesis. But when sun exposure is at a minimum during the winter months, we can turn to diet to help with our vitamin D intake. Unfortunately, very few foods are high in Vitamin D naturally, and so it is not possible to get all the Vitamin D you need from diet alone. In conjunction with a high-quality multi-vitamin, here are some of the best food sources of Vitamin D:

  • Fatty fish: So very nutritious for you for so many reasons, fish such as salmon, mackerel, and sardines, and even seafood such as oysters, contain some of the highest concentrations of Vitamin D in food.
  • Eggs: Not only high in protein and so many other nutrients (Vitamin B12), the sunshine yellow of egg yolks do contain a hearty helping of Vitamin D.
  • Beef liver: Not everyone’s favorite, but when mom said ‘eat up!’ to those liver and onions, she knew what she was talking about as far as Vitamin D’s concerned.
  • Mushrooms: Certain varieties of mushrooms, like white button, can provide Vitamin D among other nutrients (Vitamin B5) when lightly cooked.

Many foods are fortified with Vitamin D for the simple reason that we don’t get enough in our diet, or in general. Almost all milk (and baby formula) in the U.S. and Canada is fortified with Vitamin D as are some orange juices, soy products, and cereals. But please use caution and check labels, as many of these products can contain refined sugars, hydrogenated oils, and other undesirables.

What About Sunny Vacations?

Sunny Vacations

Who doesn’t enjoy a relaxing trip to a more sunny clime during the cooler fall and winter months? It’s important, though, to moderate your solar intake while on vacation. So many of us rush to the beach and neglect proper sun care in the quest for the perfect tan. This is definitely more harmful than not having any sun at all. Instead, stay out of the sun when it’s at its peak or cover up with loose-fitting, SPF-rated clothing, hat, and sunglasses.


What is Mountain Trek?

Mountain Trek is the health reset you’ve been looking for. Our award-winning health retreat, immersed in the lush nature of British Columbia, will help you detox, unplug, recharge, and roll back years of stress and unhealthy habits. To learn more about the retreat, and how we can help you reset your health, please email us at info@mountaintrek.com or reach out below:

Lotus Prawn Vermicelli

Notes
[b]Sauce:[/b][br]Tbs. almond butter[br]¼ tsp. toasted sesame oil[br]large clove garlic[br]¾ Tbs. dried ginger[br]½ Tbs. honey[br]Tbs. lightly packed cilantro[br]½ tsp. lime juice[br]¾ tsp. Chinese hot sauce – watch how hot this stuff is – (different brands)[br]Tbs. tamari[br]½ Tbs. miso[br]½ Tbs. rice wine vinegar[br]Water to thin[br]Blend until smooth, pour into sauce pan and warm gently. Pour over noodles, veggies and prawns and top with toppings.[br][br][br][b]Toppings[/b][br]Roasted Cashews chopped fine (1 tsp. per person)[br]Garnish with chopped fresh mint and cilantro[br]Finely chopped green onions[br][br][br][b]Portions:[/b][br][br] ¼ c. cooked bean thread & 1 ½ c. vegetables per person [br]Women – 4 prawns & 1 ½ Tbs. Sauce, Men – 5 prawns & 2 Tbs. Sauce

 

Bison Chipotle Chili

Bison Chipotle Chili

Author: Mountain Trek
Serves: 4
Warm up with this spicy, savoury and healthy Bison Chipotle Chili. Easy preparation, this recipe is perfect for a quick dinner or a packed lunch. Enjoy!
Bison Chipotle Chili
Ingredients
  • 12 oz. ground bison
  • 1 Tbs. oil
  • 1 tsp. basil
  • 1 tsp. oregano
  • ½ Tbs. cumin powder
  • 1¼ Tbs. chilli powder
  • 1 tsp. chipotle tabasco sauce
  • ¾ tsp. natural liquid smoke
  • ½ Tbs. tamari
  • ¾ c. diced onions
  • 1 c. diced celery
  • ¾ Tbs. minced garlic
  • 1¼ c. diced carrots
  • ¾ c. diced zucchini
  • ½ c. diced red pepper
  • ¾ c. canned tomato sauce
  • 1½ c. canned diced tomatoes
  • ¾ c. veggie stock
  • 1 c. cooked beans (kidney, pinto, black)
  • 3 oz. canned corn
  • 1¼ Tbs. fresh lime juice
Instructions
  1. Sauté vegetables and bison with oil until tender.
  2. Add tomatoes, broth and spices and simmer on very low for 1 hour.
  3. Add lime juice just before serving.
Notes
Portion: Women – 1 ½ cup. | Men – 2 cup.

 

National Post Food Writer Inspired by Mountain Trek

national postFood writer and journalist Amy Rosen just visited Mountain Trek and in her recent “Dish” column in the National Post she says, “I’m freshly back from a trip out west to a detox/hiking/fitness/bootcamp called Mountain Trek (located in the beautiful Selkirk and Purcell Mountain Ranges in the Rockies, perched above a winding 100 km lake). I’ve returned with renewed vigour in my step, a few off the rump, and a desire to eat more veggies. So, for the next few Dish columns, you’ll be eating my creative, seasonal vegetable recipes right along with me.”

To read Amy’s full story, log on to her Dish column at nationalpost.com.