New Year Resolution Reset with Ralph Lauren Model Val Zelyaeva

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Is that New Year’s Resolution already long forgotten? You’re not alone. Most people have either given up, broken or have not even started on their goals for 2015. It’s still February however, which gives you a chance to just call it a late start! I won’t tell. Sometimes, we just need a little inspiration to get us going- which is why I caught up with Val, the beautiful face of Ralph Lauren. Val radiates beauty from the inside out, and is a true holistic lifestyle advocate. Whether it be food, or beauty products, Val proves that true beauty starts with what we choose to put in and on our bodies. So, if your looking for a little inspo- here is your chance to see the lifestyle of a truly healthy model!

Since Clean Eating Goddess is all about food, we would love to know one of your favourite go-to recipes- will you share?

My all time favorite recipe is chia seed pudding for breakfast. It actually doesn’t require any cooking, so easy to make.
2 Tablespoon chia seeds
1 cup home made almond milk
1 apple
handful of rains
1 tablespoon cacao nibs
pinch of each seasalt+cinnamon+vanilla powder

Soak chia seeds for 30 min in almond milk together with sea salt + cinnamon + vanilla Mixing occasionally. In serving bowl pour chia seed mixture add thinly chopped apples, top with raisins and cacao nibs. ready!

What is your food philosophy? What is a typical day of eating like for you?

I try to eat local and seasonal. I visit local farmers every week to see whats in season and make my recipe based on seasonal produce. My diet is mostly fruits and vegetables with occasional organic eggs and wild fish. I eat a lot of superfoods such as goji berries, spirulina, chlorophyl, hemp seeds, chia seeds. I drink fresh vegetable juice daily.

Breakfast: tall glass of lemon water + 1 teaspoon MSM; chia seeds pudding.

Lunch: steamed or grilled fish with sweet potatoes.

Dinner: raw blended soup (usually a mix of broccoli, kale, avocado, cucumber, garlic, salt, olive oil, lemon juice) or large salad with kale and roasted root vegetables.

Snack: smoothie or vegetable juice or fresh fruit.

Where did your interest in food/nutrition stem from? We see you are studying nutrition via instagram, tell us more!

I was always very connected to nature. Growing up in Russia everything came from the garden- all organic, home grown, grass fed meat and dairy. I remember trips to forest for wild berries, mushrooms and pine nuts peeking, oh and fishing trips with my uncles and cousins I will never forget. When I started modeling I kind of forget about that connection. It took a while for me to go back to my roots.Im so passionate about wellness and healthy lifestyle that I decided to get certified in that area. SO I enrolled in Integrative Nutrition School. Im currently studying and will be graduating in summer 2015!

How have you managed to balance eating well with modeling and traveling? What are your secrets to keeping a well balanced diet while on the go!

I always make sure I’m prepared. Because when you get hungry and have nothing healthy with you to snack on you will eat anything. So I take chia seeds with me, spirulina, walnuts, almonds, raw chocolate, and fresh fruits. There are days when I eat badly just like anyone (pizza or pasta, bad food combo, too much red wine:) etc.. but I know the tools on how to get back on health track. The next day will be a day of fasting- eating only fruits and vegetables with lots of water. No need to be hard on yourself or being perfect all the time just simply go back to your healthy delicious food and juices.

What does yoga mean to you? How does it connect with your food choices?

Yoga taught me to be compassionate and aware of the world that around us. I can go days eating only plant based meals and feel great. But there are days when I need to ground myself and that includes eating eggs, wild caught fish or grass fed meat (which happens so rare I don’t remember last time I had a steak.) I would never ever buy commercially raised, non-organic meat or dairy. I only buy from my local farmers market where I get to ask questions and connect with farmers who grew my food. I think its the best way to live a compassionate life. Dalai Lama is not vegan but he is a picture of compassionate lifestyle.

Why have you decided to start blogging? How has the experience been thus far?

I remember few years ago I came a cross a book about raw food. after reading it, It changed my life. I started to soak my almonds and making almond milk, making coconut yogurt and raw blended soups and smoothies. Raw foods are so incredible – I increased my energy, my skin cleared up and I didn’t need to watch my weight any longer it just stayed perfect for my body type. After starting to eat so clean I changed my skin and body care products because I didn’t want to put any toxic stuff on my skin. I switched to all natural products. Then I did a house makeover using only natural non-toxic cleaners. Then I discovered yoga and meditation. Healthy living is not a diet is a lifestyle. I wish everyone knew how easy to make those changes. This is why I started beauty/health blog to share my tips.

Modelling has been a controversial career due its focus on appearances which often results in eating disorders and unhealthy habits. What is your take on this subject matter? What action have you taken to set yourself apart?

Before I discovered healthy lifestyle I was restricting my meals. I never had a serious eating disorder. I simply didn’t know anything about nutrition so I was eating boring romaine salads which obviously didn’t satisfy me for long and I went back eating junk food that made me feel gross. Lucky I discovered raw food, healthy life style, I made a transition and wellness became my lifestyle. Its such a wonderful and happy place. I want to inspire everyone to drink vegetable juices, eating fruits, experiments with yummy foods such as quinoa or sweet potatoes. I believe that we need to educate young generation about nutrition. I think Nutrition/ Healthy Cooking classes should be added to school programs.

Any words of advice for those trying to adopt a healthier lifestyle?

Start adding fresh fruits to your breakfast. Make fresh vegetable juice every morning. Naturally, the more healthy food you add to your diet the unhealthy food will crowd out eventually.

Be sure to check out her blog here!

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Kale Salad

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We all know by now how great kale is for you. Everywhere I go I see kale in many forms. Whether it is raw, sautéed, fried or oven baked, kale packs a mean nutritional punch. Kale is by far my favourite green for salads. It is crunchy, tasty and holds onto dressing like no other green. Kale is full of fibre, vitamins, antioxidants, and iron. It is detox friendly, anti-inflammatory and has cardio vascular support. Oh and… for all you dairy lovers, per calorie, kale has more calcium than milk! The whole milk makes your bones strong ordeal was really just a marketing campaign that helped boost dairy sales. What does this all mean?

Kale helps:
• you feeling full
• digestion
• protect from cancers
• cell growth, functioning of iron
• bone health and blood clotting
• lowers cholesterol
• immune system
• metabolism
• liver health

This is only one of the many kale salad combinations I make. I also add kale to smoothies, make chips and puree it into cauliflower for a beautiful green mash! This salad is filled with beautiful raw veggies, roasted sunflower seeds and hard boiled eggs and avocado for extra protein and healthy fats. I topped this salad with a mustardy vinaigrette and freshly chopped dill. It is so wonderful and fresh and is great for a filling lunch or a light dinner. Bon appetit!

Serves 2-4

Salad Ingredients:

• 1 bunch kale, chopped
• 1/4 cup chopped cauliflower
• 1/4 cup chopped radish
• 1/4 cup chopped cucumber
• 1/4 cup chopped brussels sprouts
• 1/4 cup sliced cherry tomatoes
• 1/4 cup chopped celery
• 1 avocado sliced
• 2 tbsp chopped dill
• 3 tbsp sunflower seeds

Dressing Ingredients:

• 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
• 1 tsp Dijon mustard
• 1 tbsp white wine vinegar
• 1 garlic clove, finely minced
• 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
• Sea or himalayan salt and freshly ground black pepper

Directions:

1. For eggs: pour cold water just enough to cover the tops of the eggs. Sprinkle in the salt. Heat the pan on medium high heat until water stars to boil.Once the eggs begin to boil, remove from the heat, and allow them to sit in the hot water for 15 minutes, covered tightly by a lid.

2. Rinse kale very well and chop. Remove tough stems.

3. Chop veggies, eggs, avocado and dill.

4. For vinaigrette: whisk lemon juice, Dijon mustard, vinegar, and garlic in a medium bowl. Gradually whisk in oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

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