Q: How do you start your day?
A: I pray and thank God for all the blessings that will come throughout the day.
Q: What's your favorite way to unwind?
A: Reading a cookbook on my living room couch while looking out to our flower-filled backyard-it's heaven on earth for me.
Q: If you were stranded on a desert island, what one food and one supplement would you want to have with you?
A: Oranges, because they always make me feel energized, quench my thirst, and are packed with amazing nutrition. The supplement I can't live without is my Simply O-3 omega-3 fatty acid, because it helps me remember things, fights off depression, and reduces PMS, so I won't lose my mind while I'm stranded alone on the island!
To learn more about Avanti, visit her Web site, christineavanti.com.
Do you ever wonder why you can't lose weight, even though you nibble on nothing but rabbit food? Celebrity nutritionist, chef, and author Christine Avanti, CN, just may have the answer. A graduate of the Westlake Culinary Institute professional chef program, Avanti has appeared as a guest nutrition expert and/or a health-promoting chef on the Today show, Dancing with the Stars, and others. She has also coached such celebrities as Chelsea Handler, Jeremy Piven, and Steven Seagal to eat healthfully and to actually eat more to get in great shape. How can they do that and still lose weight? Avanti explains why in her new book, Skinny Chicks Don't Eat Salads.
Q:Why don't skinny chicks eat salads?
A: The title is a catchy way to kick low-carb dieting to the curb! I love salads, and there are salad recipes in the book. I just wanted the world to know that you don't have to eat "rabbit food" to lose weight. Not to mention that restaurant salads can be a diet disaster because they are usually well over 1,000 calories.
Q:What is the "PC combo solution"?
A: Eating a lean protein with a high-fiber carb that is not processed or refined-think fresh organic fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. When you combine proteins with carbs, blood sugar levels begin to balance out, and appetite and sugar cravings get under control so you can lose those unwanted pounds.
Q:Why is it important to eat every four hours?
A: It's far better to pay your bills on time than be sent to a collections agency, right? Well, eating every four hours is sort of the same concept. Your body needs fuel, and when you wait too long to pay yourself with a balanced meal, all hell breaks loose: lack of concentration; low energy; headaches; caffeine cravings; mood swings; anxiety; depression; and, ultimately, overeating. It's far better to pay your body with a normal-sized meal every four hours as opposed to suffering the consequences that could have easily been avoided if you just ate some good food.
Q:How important is exercise for losing weight?
A: Exercise and a long, healthy life go hand in hand. You can't have one without the other. If you hate exercise, your body will hate you back by falling apart slowly but surely. I would encourage everyone to find a sport or activity they love and then connect with a group of other individuals who meet on a regular basis.
Q:What's your best piece of advice for someone who has a large amount of weight to lose?
A: Remember that Rome was not built in a day, so don't give up. Patience and consistency will generate large dividends without fail. Surround yourself with people who support you and will hold you accountable.
Ingredient of the Month: Mesquite Powder
Ground from mesquite plant seed pods, this raw, vegan powder has a nutty, molasses-caramel taste. Try in coffee, tea, and smoothies. Available from Navitas Naturals, Foods Alive, and The Raw Food World.