Showing posts with label healthy lifestyle. Show all posts
Showing posts with label healthy lifestyle. Show all posts

Thursday, June 2, 2016

What do you eat?

Summer means family and friends may be gathering for a potluck meal on the deck or by the lake. Whenever I am asked to bring a dish or need to plan a meal for a summer event, I always use recipes like the ones shown below.

Cucumber Tomato Salad


Baked Falafel Sandwich



Vegan Strawberry Ice Cream

My friend, Diane Smith, is the writer and recipe developer behind We thought it would be helpful to share a healthy meal plan for those of you who are planning summer gatherings.

I always get lots of questions about what I eat and then more questions about how to transition to a plant-based diet. I am happy to tell you that Diane is preparing a course to help people transition to a plant-based diet. Contact her via her website to sign up for the course.

Diane Smith is the editor and publisher of We have so much in common, but most of all we are passionate about being our best selves and sharing what we learn with others.

I was in a lot of pain, on medication, in and out of Doctor's offices almost weekly, and could not sleep more than a couple of hours. That was all before I switched to a plant-based diet. 

My back, feet, and legs hurt so much I could only walk short distances even in flat shoes. Now I can walk pain-free for miles, even in heels!

Before at age 54               After at age 58  

The preservatives, sugar, fat and salt added to most processed foods caused inflammation, fifty pounds of stored fat, severe migraines every week, and numerous sinus infections. Removing those foods from my life allowed my body to heal and my immune system to thrive. I have not had a cold in five years. There are no more migraines! I take no medications now, and my lab results are those of a twenty-year-old. I feel much better now than I did when I was in my thirties. The only change I made was to a plant-based diet. This is one of the most important things I wish I could share with my younger self.

Thank you so much for joining us on this journey through midlife and beyond. The second fifty years are truly the best!

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

A Styling Secret

Do you dress to hide your tummy every day?

Since my teens, my weight has gone up and down with every crazy diet ever presented. I wish I had realized earlier that diets are designed to fail. If you are not going to change your eating habits forever, all the weight will come back and will likely add more pounds when it returns.

All that losing and gaining weight has created areas that will never be taut again, no matter how much I exercise. For most of my adult life, I have dressed to conceal my midsection.

Thankfully, my weight has remained about the same for the last five years after permanently changing my choice of foods. That means I have been able to invest in many different clothing styles and enjoy wearing them with confidence. In the past there was always that question in the back of my mind, "Will I even be able to zip this in six months?"

We recently enjoyed an excellent evening meal at Rowland's located inside the Westglow Mansion in Blowing Rock, North Carolina.

As soon as I previewed the photos we snapped before we began our trip, I knew I had to go back and put on my secret styling weapon.



The foundation I am wearing in the after photo is by Maidenform from Macy's.

Each time I model or wear anything that shows my shape, I wear this support garment. It helps with my posture and smooths the middle line in front and in back without giving me an odd looking bustline.

The bra pictured below from Soma is the best fitting bra I have ever worn.

The necklace and tank top are old from Chico's. The Balmain sunglasses and cardigan are from Sak's Off 5th. The silver clutch is old from T.J.Maxx. The side-zip white pants were supplied by Fabrizio Gianni last year. The Gianni Bini sandals are from Dillard's.

Thank you for joining us on this journey through midlife and beyond. The second fifty years are truly the best!

Created in collaboration with Fabrizio Gianni
All words, styling, and creative direction are my own.

Thursday, February 18, 2016


After I stopped eating fast, easy, convenience food from a box, bag or can and focused on eating plant-based meals; I started losing weight.


I was in a lot of pain when I weighed 183 pounds. That pain came from the arthritis inflammation in my hands, feet and back so I was very inactive. I remember thinking this is what it feels like to be old. I believed that was the way my body was going to feel from that point on. I was deeply depressed, and it showed in what I wore and how I carried myself. I gave away all of my heels and bought ugly flat shoes that are supposed to be comfortable. My feet still hurt!


A few days after plants became my only source of food, I started to feel much better. Soon I felt like going for long walks, working in my flower gardens, cleaning my whole house in one day and anything else I wanted to do. The pain melted away. I was amazed!

My spirits lifted because I now felt better than I did when I was in my 30s. I gave all those flat shoes to my mother and started buying shoes and clothes that reflect my personality better. It didn't happen right away but after a couple of years, I found my style chops again. (For some strange reason, I believed those horrible print tops hid my rolls and dimples.)

When we go out to eat now, I order a salad with a side of steamed broccoli or some other vegetable, and I ask them to hold the salt and butter. We will always order the vegetarian entree when there is one offered, and we often visit restaurants because they are vegetarian.

I eat this for breakfast almost every morning.
My late lunch sometimes looks like this.

I get questions almost every day about how I managed to lose weight during those hormone shifting menopausal years.

Honestly, all I did was change my choice of food. There was no radical exercise regime. I didn't take any pills or get on any of those food to order programs. I still don't take any medications!

The book "Eat to Live" by Dr. Joel Fuhrman gave me guidance on what to eat and explained why. The most important thing to know is that you need a variety of colorful, fresh, organic, local and in-season fruits and vegetables as often as possible. My diet includes fresh fruits, leafy green and other vegetables, mushrooms, onions, berries, seeds, nuts and ancient whole grains every day. I eat this way 90% of the time.

I still enjoy a piece of dark chocolate, a glass of wine or a decadent dessert on occasion but not every day. I also know that only a few bites are enough. I don't need to finish the whole dessert. 


I have maintained my weight loss for almost five years. No diet or pills. No gyms or classes. No calorie counting or obsessing about food. 

I hope that sharing my example helps you to achieve a happy, healthy body as well.

Thank you for joining us on this journey through midlife and beyond. The second fifty years are truly the best!

Susan Street is the President of

Visit me on Twitter.
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Visit me on Polyvore.

When companies supply products to me, I disclose that within the body of the post.
All opinions are my own.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Why Plants?

About five years ago, I stopped eating meat and processed foods. I lost weight but that was not my motivation. 

When I visited my Doctor for my annual checkup in 2011, she warned me about my fatty liver, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, the strange nodules by my thyroid and noted that my gall bladder would have to come out because I had gallstones. 

She wrote prescriptions for three different medications that I would have to take for the rest of my life and made appointments for me to see two specialists. She was also concerned about my blood sugar since I was now a borderline diabetic. 

The flat shoes I wore that day didn't help. My feet still hurt a lot from inflammation because of arthritis. Just walking into her office was painful. I had seven sinus infections that year. At least two migraines per week (sometimes more) were normal for me during that time.

I read the book "Eat to Live" by Dr. Joel Fuhrman while I was recovering from the gall bladder surgery. Within a week, I started to lose weight and feel better. When I went back to my surgeon for my six-week checkup, I had lost twenty pounds. He was thrilled with my progress!

Later that day I ran two miles on the path around that same hospital where the gall bladder surgery had been performed just a few weeks before. I must say; I felt a little like Rocky when I did that!

Processed foods are deadly for me. I will not buy them. The only things you will find in my pantry and refrigerator are plant-based foods in the most natural and organic state. The changes I made in my choices of food made a major difference in my health and the way I feel every day. I no longer take any medications and my lab results are similar to those of a teenager. My doctors are amazed and motivated by the changes I have made and maintained over the years.

If we eat in a restaurant, as we sometimes do, I will order a salad, a side order of broccoli or some other steamed vegetable and a glass of wine. I mostly skip the bread and share an occasional dessert when Mr. Mickey wants to have one. Three small bites are enough to fully enjoy it.

This is normally my breakfast.

The photo above shows what my breakfast looks like about 95% of the time. I use fresh fruit that is always changing with the seasons. 

One of my lovely followers shared this with me recently. Emily wrote: "I have suffered from chronic constipation (IBS) for years and this recipe seems to have reversed this disease. I am very regular with no stomach cramps!!!! PTL!!! Thank you so very much for this wonderful recipe!!!!"

You will find the recipe for the porridge here when you scroll down to the bottom of the page.

This is normally my late in the day lunch.

A typical late lunch might be steamed veggies over a salad with a baked sweet potato. I often make a meatless chili or vegetable soup for lunch in winter. I use frozen vegetables without any preservatives or salt in my soup. Two meals per day are enough for me. If I feel hungry later in the day I may have a piece of fruit or some hot tea. I sleep much better with an empty stomach.

This might be a different late in the day wintertime lunch.

I drink lots of filtered water with lemon every day. Many digestive issues are a result of not being adequately hydrated. I never drink sodas!

Eating highly nutritious plants, seeds, nuts, dried beans, and grains has allowed me to maintain a healthy weight for several years. This is the first time in my life that I have been able to do that. I have struggled with my chubbiness since I was a child. The best part of all this is that my immune system is very strong. I have not had a cold in years!

The many letters I get from readers who thank me for turning them on to a plant-based diet are so special to me. This one came just this week. 

Susan, when I found you on FB, I decided to follow you because you look so fabulous in skinny jeans. I am 64 and since menopause, I have gained a tremendous amount of weight. Anyhow, I wanted to tell you that I too found "Eat to Live" and started a new life on November 16. I have lost 25 pounds and have 75 more to go. I will continue to be inspired by you. We are both prolonging our lives. But I have to say what I want to do most right now is look as good as you do in your clothes. You are lovely, and I think you ought to talk more about your plant based diet. It would be a great service. I have inspired two male friends of mine to adopt this way of eating, and they cannot thank me enough! They have lost more weight than I have, and now they think I'm the greatest.

Sharing fashion tips and style inspiration with you is fun, but the most important thing I hope to accomplish with this blog is to encourage you to eat for your best health. Never underestimate the power of plants to help you regain your health.

Thank you for joining us on this journey through midlife and beyond. The second fifty years are truly the best!

Susan Street is the President of

Visit me on Twitter.
Visit me on Pinterest.
Visit me on Polyvore.

When companies supply products to me, I disclose that within the body of the post.
All opinions are my own.

Monday, December 28, 2015

Royal Blue with an Opalescent Glass Necklace

We enjoyed one last holiday splurge yesterday by having brunch at the Grove Park Inn's Blue Ridge Dining Room

I have to admit to you, I screamed when I weighed myself this morning. I gained four pounds during Christmas week! Eeeeek!

I haven't gotten on the scale in a few days because I knew I would just stress out. By the same token, I have not eaten with wild abandon. Even with very small portions and limiting the desserts to a minimum, I still gained weight. 

Having late dinners and rich foods I don't normally eat were the culprits. It was wonderful to spend special times with family and friends, but I am happy to return to my normal routine today.

That's a glass of purified water with fresh lemon. I will be drinking only this today. (I use a glass Hummingbird straw because lemon can damage tooth enamel.) There will be fresh fruit before noon and one large leafy green salad late this afternoon.

As we were leaving the resort we ran into my sweet wonderful friend Rose who was also spending the day there with her family.

I wore a tank top and pants from Chico's. The cardigan is by Adrienne Vittadini via Saks Off 5th. The suede shoes are by Sam Edelman via Nordstrom last year. The bag is by Ralph Lauren via T.J. Maxx. 

I bought the necklace at S.M. Bradford while we were in Hilton Head last month.

I recently learned another sweater hanging technique and I want to share it with you. I hope it helps you to avoid the shoulder nipples look.

Thank you for joining us on this wonderful journey through midlife and beyond. The second fifty years are truly the best!

Susan Street is the President of

Represented by Talent Trek Agency in Knoxville TN.

Visit me on Twitter.
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Visit me on Polyvore.

Thursday, December 17, 2015


When you send me emails sharing that you have lost weight, your blood tests are more positive, that you can now play with your grandchildren or that you are no longer diabetic, I am reminded why I continue to share my life with you via this blog. 

In 2009, I was so heavy at one hundred and eighty-three pounds, I could barely squat down to visit with this hungry little squirrel looking for a handout. Notice how carefully I cropped the picture at that time so as not to show my girth. I was in denial! 

Fast forward to 2012 on another visit to Brevard, North Carolina. My fashion sense and confidence are improving and I have lost more than forty pounds.

It was so easy to slip into the habit of eating mindlessly and then dressing in whatever was stretchy and comfortable every day. I lived this way for a few years and my health suffered greatly because of it. Not just my physical health but my mental health as well. I had so little confidence that I didn't even want to leave my home. I was deeply depressed for several years. I had zero friends. Not one! 

If you have visited my blog before today, you know that I now have lots of wonderful friends, loads of confidence and a fun filled life that I could not even imagine ten years ago. Being healthy both physically and mentally has allowed me to start to fully enjoy life and overcome the depression that dominated my life for several years. 

Sharing fashion tips and style inspiration is such a fun part of publishing this blog. I like everything in my closet now and getting dressed for any occasion is a snap. My style has evolved as I research and share with you what I learn. Dressing this almost sixty-year-old body with style and grace is a completely different project than dressing my thirty-year-old one. But, I firmly believe that the most important thing I share with you is the inspiration to learn to eat to properly fuel your body for your best health. 

I will continue to share what works well for me and use myself as an example. I hope that you will be inspired also to find what works well for your body and that you can start to enjoy better health and a more joy-filled life.

At the link below is a new hearty soup recipe I recently found. I added it to my collection of basics and have been enjoying this one as my late in the day meal for about two weeks. I often add frozen or fresh vegetables near the end of the cooking time. The grain farro is a wonderful substitute for the pasta. (I soak the farro along with the dried beans.) I also experiment with the ingredients and spices to add variety and new flavors according to what looks good at the grocery store on the day I visit.

Thank you for joining us on this incredible journey through midlife and beyond. The second fifty years are truly the best!

Susan Street is the President of

Represented by Talent Trek Agency in Knoxville TN.

Visit me on Twitter.
Visit me on Pinterest.
Visit me on Polyvore.

Friday, November 27, 2015

Eat Smart Even on Thanksgiving!

After my last post a few days ago, there were lots more questions about food. Yesterday was the great American food and family celebration so I am sharing my tips for successfully navigating this type of event. For some of us, this is the start of the overeating season.

I wore my slimmest fitting straight leg jeans from Loft with a white tank top by Peck and Peck via Stein Mart topped off with a luxurious faux suede shirt by IC Collection from ShopMyFairLady.

I have often said that tight jeans saved my life. When I wear yoga pants or other stretchy comfortable slouchy pants day after day, it is so easy to gain a few pounds without being mindful of it. Before you know it, you have ten or more extra pounds! I have a French friend who tells me she never weighs herself. "When my clothes start to feel tight I eat less for a few days."

This was a casual family gathering so I limited the accessories and makeup to a lighter daytime version with one ring and a statement of arm candy.  The bracelets have been collected during my travels. That's my favorite YSL lip gloss and an animal print clutch from Express. The boots are by French Connection via Saks Off 5th.

My sweet sister prepared a delicious meal for our family. She is an awesome cook! We enjoyed a perfect day together sharing memories, laughing and talking.

As the sun was starting to go down on this bright beautiful warm day, I snapped this photo of a deer eating in a meadow on a hill.

These are my own important points to remember at these special meals which will likely be happening a lot in the coming weeks. I never eat until I feel really full. When I know I will be sitting down to a special family meal later in the day, I eat a very light small breakfast. The size of servings can quickly become overwhelming so I always serve myself only one spoon full of the items I want to enjoy. It all tastes the same so why pile a lot of each item on your plate and then be miserable later? 

My food choices throughout the year include fresh organic and local vegetables and fruit available at my local grocery stores. I keep an open mind when I shop and just look for those items that look most appealing at the time.

My goal is to eat these foods every day.
a large bowl of dark leafy greens
steamed greens
in season steamed or baked vegetables
a cup of cooked dry beans (If you only have the canned version, rinse well before serving. They have a lot of salt in them!)
an ounce of raw seeds and nuts
at least three fresh fruits

These items do nothing for our health. I eat them in very small quantities on very rare occasions if ever. 
salad dressing

Some foods or ingredients can be the trigger that cause headaches, body aches, and inflammation and bloating. I avoid preservatives, processed foods, and meat because my body does not respond well to these items at all. Sodium tripolyphosphate known as STPP is one such trigger that will bring on a severe migraine for me that lasts for two days. It is a toxic poison for some people and yet the United States Food and Drug Administration lists STPP as "generally recognized as safe". I do NOT trust them to make these choices for me. It is wise to find out which foods, additives, and preservatives cause you problems and to eliminate them from your life.

My goal when I started this journey five years ago was not just to lose weight. I wanted to eliminate those migraines and the inflammation that was causing me so much pain I found it difficult to walk at times much less wear high heels. A wonderful side effect was that I lost more than forty pounds and gained a tremendous amount of self-confidence along with a robust healthy immune system.

I enjoy sharing fashion tips with you, but it is much more important to me that I convey how vital it is that you take care of your body so that you can enjoy your life. A friend of mine who is a heart specialist was discussing this a few nights ago. She said, "Many of my patients live their lives without taking care of themselves at all and then when the heart starts to fail they want me to fix it."

Thank you for joining us on this journey through midlife and beyond. The second fifty years are truly the best!

Susan Street is the President of

Represented by Talent Trek Agency in Knoxville TN.

Visit me on Twitter.
Visit me on Pinterest.
Visit me on Polyvore.