Quinoa Salad

Quinoa salad is my favorite meal to make in my dorm. The ingredients are relatively cheap, I can make it in bulk for easy eating all week, and it doesn’t take much effort. It’s also an easy way to get all of the grains, protein, and veggies I need.

Here you can find a few variations of quinoa salad and recipes to go along with them. However, these recipes require pots, pans, and stoves, which I often don’t have access to in my dorm. If you have a similar situation as mine, you can follow this easy recipe for microwave cooked quinoa which only requires a bowl and a microwave, to make the recipes linked above easier.


Start: Real Food Fast

Being a full time student and part time employee is really tough schedule-wise. Especially the days when i have class until 3:30 then have to be at work by 5. And with my dining hall being closed from 4 to 5, its really hard for me to grab dinner before work, and I cant always cook. So I went on the hunt for any fast food place that had healthy options, and I found my new, all time favorite food joint. It’s called Start: Real Food Fast, and they’re dedicated to reinventing drive-thru fast food to be made from scratch using clean ingredients.

After learning about their from scratch cooking and clean, fresh ingredients, I was expecting to spend a lot more than fast food would be worth, I was expecting restaurant prices. However, their prices are pretty reasonable. You can get a full meal for less than 10 dollars, which is much less than if you were to pick up the same healthy fast food from a Whole Foods or Central Market. The price definitely isn’t bad for the great ingredients and laborious cooking they offer.  And since it’s drive through, you don’t even have to leave your car. It’s the easiest, most convenient, guilt free meal you can get. So far I’ve tried their Turkey and Raspberry Chipotle Wrap and their Quinoa Salad, both of which were some of the most delicious things I’ve ever tasted. This definitely wasn’t what I expected from a fast food joint. The food was restaurant quality with more convenience and a decent, affordable price. To see more of their delicious, healthy food options, you can check out their menu here.

And if my word isn’t enough, Start has been featured in numerous articles by well known companies, blogs, and magazines, like D Magazine, Eater, and the Dallas Observer, all of which you can read here. So if you’re short on time and looking for an affordable, drive-thru, healthy, delicious meal, go to Start: Real Food Fast located on Greenville and University. It’s restaurant quality food at fast food speed. And it’ll be the best fast food you ever eat.

Affordable, DIY Juice Cleanse and it’s Fantastic Benefits

I was slightly hesitant to jump on board the juice cleanse train, which consists of three days of nothing but fresh juices and water. But with so many doctors, celebrities, and local bloggers swearing by the numerous benefits of juice cleansing, which Dr. Woodson Merrell describes here, I figured I would give it a try.

I was worried about the cost of a juice cleanse since most companies charge at least $100 for three days worth of juice, so I decided to snag my parents juicer and make my own. I started off at UTD’s dining hall and stocked up on some of the fruits and vegetables they offer there. I then headed to my local grocery store to buy anything I couldn’t find in the dining hall. My final grocery list and bill looked like this:

  • apples (free from the dining hall)
  • 2 bags of spinach ($5.98)
  • mixed greens (free from the dining hall)
  • 1 large package of carrots ($0.99)
  • cucumber (free from the dining hall)
  • 2 ginger root ($2.30)
  • 2 parsley ($0.69)
  • cinnamon ($2.49)
  • almond milk ($1.49)
  • 8 grapefruit ($3.99)
  • 4 limes ($1.56)
  • 2 pineapples ($4.98)

Not bad for three days worth of “food”. These groceries were enough to make all 18 juices I would need to last for three days. The night before my first day of juice cleansing, I gathered six bottles and went ahead and made all six juices for the next day for convenience. I didn’t follow any specific juice recipes, however Juice Recipes offers a large selection delicious recipes that I often use.

On day one I awoke and immediately craved my morning coffee and oatmeal, but I resisted and went for my breakfast juice instead. Pre-juicing and bottling made it easy for me to grab additional juices before I headed to class. After my breakfast and mid-morning juices, I was expecting to be on the verge of starvation, but surprisingly, I wasn’t. I felt as normal as ever the rest of the day.

On day two I woke up before my alarm clock, which never happens, and felt energized and perky, which also never happens. I was no longer craving caffeine or carbs and was looking forward to my day of juices. I felt energized the entire day, even through my long classes, work out, and homework.

On day three I was disappointed that this would be my last day of juice cleansing. My body was feeling better than it ever had. I had much more energy and I felt light and lean. My skin was extra clear and looked overall healthier, and I was no longer having unhealthy cravings for sugar and soda.

So at the end of my juice cleansing experience, I would say that the benefits are absolutely worth it. Even if you feel like the healthiest person in the world, a juice cleanse will only make you feel even better, and get you on track for living a healthier lifestyle.

Make eating organic fruits and vegetables more budget friendly

After switching to an almost completely organic diet, my body feels better than it ever has. While eating organically has not been scientifically proven to be healthier, many people reap numerous benefits from an organic diet. Dr. Alan Greene conducted an experiment on himself by eating only organic food for three years. In this article in the New York Times, you can read Greene’s testimony about his experience and overall health boost. Eating organic can be rather expensive, but if you shop smart it can actually be very affordable. Buying produce while its season can save you large amounts of money. Here you can find an interactive chart where you can see what fruits and vegetables are in season, so you know what to add to your grocery list and what to leave out.

Twitter and Blog Lists


Audrey Johns @tonetiki: Audrey Johns is the founder of Lose Weight By Eating, a blog full of her own personal healthy meals, and a professional weight-loss coach.

Cassandra Bodzak @cassandrabodzak: Cassandra Bodzak is a healthy living coach that tweets recipes that shes created for her clients.

crave_DFW @Crave_DFW: Crave DFW is a small group of food enthusiasts located in Dallas.

Dallas Foodie @Dallas_Foodie: Dallas Foodie is run by Danielle Glick who is a social media director for companies in Dallas. This is her personal twitter used for food reviews.

Eat Well, Eat Cheap @eatwelleatcheap: Eat Well, Eat Cheap is a twitter account based off of a blog about “frugal-but-good cooking”.

Clean Eating @EatCleanCollege: A college version of Clean Eating that posts healthy, easy to follow recipes.



Lose Weight By Eating (http://www.loseweightbyeating.com): Lose Weight By Eating is run by Audrey Johns. She posts recipes that she uses in her own kitchen and aided her in losing 150 pounds, then keeping the weight off. She is now a professional weight-loss coach and uses these recipes in her weight-loss programs.

Crave DFW (http://cravedfw.com) Crave DFW is a blog that focuses on music, art, and food in the DFW area. It is edited by a few individuals who all live in Dallas and have experience with careers in either food, music, or art.

Budget Bytes (http://www.budgetbytes.com) Budget Bytes is a personal-turned-professional blog that attempts to make delicious recipes in the most budget friendly way possible. Each post comes with a total cost and a per portion cost as well as instructions on how to make it.

Skinny Taste (http://www.skinnytaste.com) Skinny Taste is run by Gina Homolka who started a simple, personal blog to share her recipes, and turned it into a professional, award winning, cooking blog.

Attention Journal

5:00 – turned on laptop and opened Facebook

5:05- opened Twitter

5:07- replied to a text message

5:09- checked Instagram on phone

5:15 – checked Twitter on phone

5:20 – opened Pinterest on laptop and browsed

5:36- replied to text message then returned to Pinterest

5:40 – logged on to elearning to check for assignments and grades

5:51 – replied to a text message

5:53 – checked Twitter again

5:56 – replied to a text message then went back to Pinterest

After the hour of logging my attention, I realized my phone is my main distraction. Every time it vibrates I stop what I’m doing to check it, then end up spending more time on my phone than I meant to. Iv’e also realized I have a huge Pinterest problem.


7:15 PM – began yoga sequence

7:45 – checked a text message then resumed yoga

8:00 – checked another text message then resumed yoga

8:15 – finished yoga sequence