Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Bulletproof Coffee

My friends and I participated in a 21 day challenge recently. This challenge stressed the importance of having healthy fats in your diet. One recommendation was adding grass-fed butter and coconut oil to your daily coffee. Even though my low-fat, calorie counting days are long gone, I was still very skeptical. 
I read up on Bulletproof coffee and learned there is only one kind of butter you should put in your coffee: grass-fed butter. Kerrygold unsalted brand is the most common that you can find in stores. (It is usually found in the gourmet cheese section.)
Most cows are corn or soy fed. It’s cheap and filling, but cows aren’t actually meant to eat that- they can’t even digest it properly- and their milk produces the kinds of fats you don’t want in your body. Grass-fed cows on the other hand commonly produce the best milk and beef, and the butter made from those cows is just as good. Here are five reasons why you should be putting this kind of butter in your coffee (and just using it in general from now on):

1. Only grass-fed butter has the right fats that regulate cholesterol, not add to it. Grass-fed butter has the best ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids (which reduces body fat) and is a good source of vitamin K, both of which according to studies reduces the risk of heart disease.
2. It provides healthy fats for your brain and body to create cell walls (membranes) and hormones. The short-chain fatty acid Butyrate, once thought to be bad for you, has been linked to preventing neurodegenerative diseasesincreased energy expenditure, and is also anti-inflammatory, further preventing heart disease.
3. Drinking it each morning puts your body in the routine to burn fat all day, helping you trim down overall. CLA (conjugated linoleic acid), found in grass-fed butter, has been shown to reduce body fat mass especially in overweight individuals.
4. “Bulletproof” coffee will give you energy as well as increase cognitive function that you can literally feel when it kicks in for about six hours- and without the crash. Mixed with more healthy fats from coconut oil, this amped up drink will help produce ketones, which are created when your body creates energy from fat rather than carbohydrates.
5. It is delicious! Seriously, you have to give it a try. Below is the recipe.


  • 1tbs Kerrygold unsalted grass-fed butter 
  • 1 tbs of Coconut Oil
  • 2 cups of hot coffee brewed 

How to Bulletproof Your Coffee

  •  Make coffee: Brew coffee as you normally would.  
  • Froth: Add coffee, butter, and coconut oil to blender or magic bullet.  Blend until there is a thick layer of foam on top like a latte. 
  • (optional) Add cinnamon or vanilla.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Solstice Health and Fitness Challenge

The last six weeks of winter I participated in a Health and Fitness Challenge at CrossFit Solstice. My friends Elyse, Christi, Ron and I organized and coached the challenge. This was the first time we had a nutrition challenge at our gym, so we spent a lot of time researching and debating how we would organize and run it. 

The first goal of the challenge was that participants would end the challenge feeling healthy, fit, energized and rejuvenated. The second goal was that participants would adopt some sustainable healthy habits into their daily life. 

With those goals in mind, we developed the six week challenge. The challenge was developed around the concept of bio-individuality. Bio-individuality is the belief that there’s no one-size-fits-all diet – each person is a unique individual with highly individualized nutritional requirements. Personal differences in anatomy, metabolism, body composition and cell structure all influence your overall health and the foods that make you feel your best. That’s why no single way of eating works for everyone.

However, there are certain habits that we know will make us feel great (sleep), and others that we know will have a negative effect on our health (sugar)! We organized the challenge around these principles. 

Each day participants logged their points into an Excel spreadsheet that they submitted at the end of the week. Points could be earned everyday for sleeping at least seven hours, drinking 64 ounces of water a day, working out, stretching and sharing a healthy recipe or tip with the group. Points were lost for drinking alcohol, and consuming sugar and prepared foods. 

At the end of the challenge additional points were earned if participants met an individual goal they set for themselves at the start of the challenge. For example, I will perform 8 strict pull-ups, or I will lose 2 inches from my hips. Additional points were also rewarded based off improvement on a before and after workout (Filthy 50). 

We had some amazing results from the challenge. Huge goals were met, inches and pounds were lost, and a new sense of positive energy was gained in the gym. 

Click here for a great post-challenge write up with results!

Below is some of Team Conneen! We were the top scoring team. Dave was the challenge winner and Jess (not pictured) came in second place.