December 20, 2015

5 Easy Tips for Portion Control

First off, let me say, I miss all of you! These last few weeks have been insane to say the least so it feels good to finally get back into the swing of things with blogging! With the holidays being in full swing, a friend thought it would be a good idea to discuss portion control, Thanks Mai Lyn!  I, for one, have to really really really really try my hardest during Thanksgiving/Christmas not to over do the eating. I'm going to pretend this is where your nodding your head, saying, "Me too" so I don't feel alone. Haha, seriously though, when people are trying to lose weight or maintain their figure, the first thought goes to exercising like crazy.

Exercising is great for trying to slim down and lose weight, however, combined with portion control with a balance diet, the results can be even more amazing. Just do not confuse portion control with an actually serving size you find on food labels because those are two completely different things. A portion is the actually amount of food you put on your plate. A serving size is specific amount of food defined by common measurements, usually cups or tablespoons.

By understanding portion controls and how to use them, you can have a better understanding of what your putting into your body and how much! Below are a few tips to help you out.

November 20, 2015

Play! by Sephora Nov 2015 Review

Disclaimer: There are no affiliate links within this post. The box was paid for by Jerica.

After fighting this illness and an ER trip this week,You have no idea how great it feels to get packages in mail, its like christmas. Even more exciting, I received my very first beauty subscription box Play! by Sephora in the mail. Sephora and I are BFFs so when I heard they were doing a subscription box like Ipsy or Birchbox ,I jumped at the chance. Sephora has never let me down when it comes to beauty products, customer service and having a good variety of products in stock. Unfortunately, Sephora is only doing a testing market for the boxes at first and there is a waiting list. The boxes will be available for everyone in 2016. 

November 13, 2015

My Favorite Products for Oily Skin

Picture this, your feeling extra super magically delicious cute because your makeup is beat to perfection. Im talking about In-Your-Head-Beyonce-Flawless-Is-Playing-As-You-Walk down the hall cute ok?! Mid-day, you finally have time to check out a mirror with your cute self and staring back at you is a hot oily mess. Disappointing huh? Sometimes it seems like no matter what you do, your face always seems to end up shiny by the end of the day.

These are some of my favorite products that I use routinely to help combat my oil skin throughout the day.

November 12, 2015

Staying On Track During The Holidays!

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!!! With my favorite time of the year settling in, we all know what that means....FOOD!!! With birthdays, dinner parties, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year's celebrations and everything in between, it can be harder than Trigonometry to stay on the healthy path.

I know for a fact that I gained weight for the holidays last year and I definitely can tell when I look back at the pictures. Luckily, I was able to lose what I gained and get back on the right path. This year, I'm going to follow the tips I created for myself back in 2013. Check them out below so that you  won't let the Holidays destroy your midsection!

1. Don't deprive yourself.
The holidays are a time for family, fun and fellowship. It's a time to relax and let your hair down and celebrate all the hard work you'be put in throughout the year. But before you decide to devour the whole sweet potato pie, remember your goals! One slice is good. Five slices? Probably not a good idea!

2. Work out more.
Your calorie intake may increase a bit more during this time, so that means your workouts should increase more as well. Use your time off from school or work to hit the gym twice a day. If you can't do that, go harder than usual. Going harder doesn't mean you have to spend more time in the gym, it just means you're using more energy and sweating A LOT more!

3. Keep candies, sodas, and other sweet treats out of your house! 
Holiday season is the time when all the sweet treats ever manufactured in the history of life come out to taunt you and make you fat. Trust me. I know. Visions of sugar plums don't only dance in my head, but all around my house during this time of the year. Therefore, it's quite difficult to ignore my sweet tooth when I have a jar full of candy sitting on my living room coffee table. This year, instead of processed sweet treats, I'll be indulging in nature's candy: FRUITS. Gotta be responsible somehow, right?

4. Enjoy your holidays.
"What do you think this is? Christmas?" Um, yes! At the end of the day, remember that it is the holidays. One sweet treat won't hurt you, a glass of eggnog won't give you diabetes, and a slice of ham won't clog your arteries. Remember to be responsible in your eating and load up on the fruits and vegetables. Eat, drink, and be merry! Happy Holidays!

Check out my Healthy for the Holidays video below:

October 30, 2015

6th Annual Odessa Haywood Cancer Awareness Gala

This past weekend, I had the pleasure of providing my makeup services for the 6th Annual Odessa Haywood Cancer Awareness Gala. Dr. Kimberley Booker founded this organization in honor of her mother, Odessa Haywood who passed in 2008 from Multiple Myeloma Cancer.

I was honored when Dr. Booker asked me to do her and her daughter's makeup last year and even more honored this year when she asked me to provide my services for a few cancer survivors who were being recognized. I quickly jumped at the opportunity because I always think it is important to give back, especially with something as important as cancer awareness.

Here are a few photos from the event:

October 27, 2015

Organic Vs Natural

Have you ever been in the grocery store looking at produce and realize the word"organic" is everywhere? Organic, Organic, Organic. I'm almost positive you hear and see that word several times a week at least. It tends to get thrown around a lot but still, many people are not clear on what exactly this means.

October 26, 2015

The Dirty Dozen: Foods You Should Consider Buying Organic

Occasionally when your reading or watching the news, you come across a story of produce contamination. I know you have seen them, spinach being recalled because they found traces of E. Coli or strawberries having traces of feces (yeah, disgusting I know). Unfortunately this is what you have to deal with when you don't grow your own produce in your back yard. You relying on someone else to provide you and your family with good quality clean food. The Dirty Dozen list came about because many experts felt that people should understand which kinds of produce have the most pesticide contamination.

October 14, 2015

Smoothie Queen: My Smoothie Regimen

Many people have asked my about my smoothies and what I put in them. I usually tell them that it depends on what I have a taste for. One day, I may be feeling tropical, the next day I may want a berry flavor, or some days I may want to go green and have a super healthy smoothie. It honestly just depends on what my palette is feeling like that day. Below, I have recipes for three of my go-to smoothies as well as a video recipe of a yummy tropical green smoothie. Hope you enjoy!

October 12, 2015

My New Obsession: Belvita Breakfast Biscuits Review

OK, I am fully aware that these biscuits have been out for a number of years but I just recently found these bad boys and decided to try them a few week ago. Seriously, I was in the grocery store like "What can i possible get for a super quick breakfast?" I don't know about y'all but nearly 2-3 times a week, I just do not have time to make breakfast in the morning. Most of the time, Sleep wins. Who am I kidding, sleep wins all the time. Any who, while in the cookie aisle looking for something I do not need, I stumbled upon these little gems.

October 10, 2015

Pumpkin Spice Banana Bread

*No pumpkins were harmed in the making of this recipe, because there is no actual pumpkin in it*

First, let me start by saying that I am extremely glad it is finally the weekend. This week has been trying to say the least and I just want to relax.  Hopefully you guys had a much better week then I did. This recipe came from sheer laziness and trying to use a produce before it spoils. It never fails, I can never buy the correct amount of bananas for the week. Usually when I don't buy enough, I run out BUT if I buy too much, they start to spoil. So, here I am with 3 bananas practically black because I'm too lazy and too cheap to chunk them. Haha!

October 7, 2015

I Heart Fall Tag

Fall is one of our favorite seasons here at Eat Well and Sparkle. With the change of weather, the colorful trees, big sweaters and cute boots, and let's not forget....PUMPKIN; who could hate the amazingness that is Fall! In honor of the change of seasons here is our "I Heart Fall Tag"

September 30, 2015

How I Found My Inner Sparkle With Anxiety

For me, I'll never forget when I had my first panic attack in March 2011 while I was at college. The empty feeling of having no hope and being consumed by the overwhelming sensation of being a failure will forever be with me. Feeling like your breath got knocked out of you. Crying but your not sure why. Light-headed, dizzy, mind-racing. I have never been in that dark of a place before and it was so scary.

Dealing with things that effect you mentally can be rough but for me, anxiety has been the hardest thing I have ever had to deal with. I've always been the the type to get overwhelmed very easily and I just thought it was the stress of life. Then during psychology class in the summer after that first attack, I finally understood that I need to get some outside help for this. All of the anxiety signs seemed to fit...

September 28, 2015

How I Changed My Eating Habits With Weight Watchers Online

*This post and this blog is not affiliated with Weight Watchers in any type of way. This is solely my experience with the company. I am not being paid for this post (although that would be nice), nor am I getting any other benefits. :)

August 2012 vs. May 2013
33 lbs down.

Many people have asked me about my Weight Loss Journey and how I was able to lose almost 50 pounds in a span of  2 years. To that I always answer, "eating right and exercise......OH and Weight Watchers!" I don't have a problem telling people that I needed extra help in losing weight because honestly, it's just not that easy!

When you come from a culture that loves food and is rich with flavorful dishes that are not always the healthiest, it's hard to steer away from what you've always known and begin to choose better options. My family has a saying, "We meet to eat!" because we do! That's just us and honestly, I wouldn't change it for the world. However, what happens when your life starts to revolve around food and that food is causing you to swell up and your arms are bigger than before, your favorite pair of jeans don't fit, you're out of breath after walking up one flight of stairs? That was me at 20 years old and I realized it was do or die. It really was time to make a change.

September 25, 2015

Meal Prep for Beginners

*No affiliation with any products mention, I just really enjoy using them*

As I said in 6 Tips for Packing a Cost Effective Heathy Lunch, Meal prepping on Sundays is an awesome way to have your lunch already prepared for the week. Personally, this saves me a ton of time during the week because I'm not scrambling around trying to find some unhealthy place to eat during lunchtime. Here are a few tips for you if you have never meal prepped before.

Meal Prep Recipes

These are a few of my favorite recipes to use when doing meal prep. I love them because they are super simple to make and cook. Hopefully this helps you to start out but do not forget to be creative! I cannot stress enough that you should not eat things you do not like simply because they are healthy. Enjoy! 

Turkey Spinach Meatloaf
   20 oz extra lean (99%) ground turkey
   4 cups baby spinach
   1/2 medium yellow bell pepper, chopped
   1/2 white onion, chopped
   4 cloves garlic, minced
   1/2 cup Italian bread crumbs
   1 egg
   1 tbsp worcestershire sauce
   1/4 cup no salt added ketchup, divided
   1/2 tsp chili powder
   1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
   1/2 tsp oregano
   1/4 tsp thyme 
    No oregano or thyme? just add 1 1/2 tsp of Italian seasoning !
   Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees.
   Heat 1 tsp olive oil over medium high heat.  Add garlic, onion and bell pepper and sauce until fragrant.  Add baby spinach, mixing with veggies until wilted.  Drain before adding to large bowl.
   Mix with all remaining ingredients except for 3 tbsp of ketchup in a large bowl.
   Spray a bread pan with non-stick cooking spray.  Add turkey mixture and push down into pan evenly.  Top with remaining ketchup.

   Bake at 375 degrees for approx. 1 hr 

Skinny Chicken 
 - Chicken lightly seasoned with garlic powder, onion powder and black pepper. sauté in olive oil in a skillet for 3-4 minutes on each side. 

Tuna Salad with Greek Yogurt
- Tuna Fish salad w/ Greek yogurt (making in the morning) (standard recipe except sub mayo for Greek yogurt, more protein) 

Tired of eating the same thing?
Take the meatloaf recipe and cut it in half (Half all ingredients)(Meatloaf cooking time between 35-45mins) .Then take half of the ground turkey and turn it into turkey lettuce cups!
    Take half of the onions and pepper, chopped, add them along the rest of the ground turkey, then cook in the skillet with some olive oil until done and veggies are soft. Carrots are awesome in this and you can find them pre-shredded in the produce section! 
    While cooking, add 1/2 teaspoon of ground ginger, 1 whole garlic clove chopped, (i love garlic so i always add more, 1 tablespoon of low sodium soy sauce or teriyaki sauce black pepper to taste. 
Spoon into iceberg lettuce cups and enjoy!!

If your not ready to eat the cups right away, store ground turkey mixture in tubberware until needed. Store lettuce cups wrapped in wet paper towel in another tubberware then combine when ready to eat. 


- Microwaved steamed green beans with balsamic vinegar. (Sautéed in a pan with olive oil for about 2-3mins to finish) I used fresh green beans but the frozen ones that steam in the bag are just as good! 

- Steamed green peas (in frozen section, steams in bag) 

- Brown Quinoa (box of quinoa, instead of cooking in water, use chicken or veggie stock, more flavor, sodium free of course) 

- Roasted sweet potatoes( wash, cut in 1/4s, cover in olive oil, season with salt pepper, roast in oven for 50-60mins. I added the sweet potatoes and meatloaf on the same baking sheet! 

Things Can Be Substituted
Whole Grains
- Quinoa 
- Brown rice
- lentils
- use whole grain tortillas for tuna fish salad
- whole grain bread

Ground Turkey/Chicken 
- Salmon
- Any fish

- all veggies can be changed and all can be found in the frozen section in steamable bags! Just email me if you have questions! 

- Same thing with the fruits!! 

- Be creative with your stacks, my current snack is these sweet potato & onion crackers with a slice of cheese. 
- Hummus
- yogurt
- low sodium beef jerky 
- Quest Bars
- granola bars (less sugar as possible)
- cheese
- grapes 
- apples
- Almonds and craisins
Email me at or message me on our Facebook Page.

September 22, 2015

6 Tips for Packing a Cost Effective Heathy Lunch

Is it just me or does it seem like life gets busier during the fall and winter months? For me, it just seems as if all the sudden I have so much more to do. Even my friends with kids and families, Im exhausted just listening to them tell everything that is coming up. Sadly, the first thing to go during these busy months is a home cooked meal and a nice healthy packed lunch.

While I'm fully aware it is very hard to stay focused on packing a healthy lunch and it is not easy to stay motivated to do so. The keyword here is going to be motivation. Not your gym motivation because that motivation just doesn't work for most of us; my gym motivation be like "Girl...if you don't stay on this couch..." (Remind me to kick her to the curb ASAP). Im talking about real motivation, like the kind you use to make your life better financially or the kind you use to motivate your children. Be motivated to provide yourself with the best possible lifestyle. To give you a good head start, Ive got 6 tips here to help to pack an awesome lunch!

1. Make Enough Dinner For Leftovers

This is by far the easiest tip and I'm sure the one you hear most often. When your preparing dinner, make enough to pack for your lunch tomorrow then go ahead and pack it in your lunch containers. Sure it is a little more extra work BUT it saves you so much time in the morning! That way, if your like me, you can enjoy that nice hot cup of coffee a little bit longer. 

2. Cook The Meals For Your Lunch on Sunday 

Personally, this is what I do when I am prepping my lunches for the week. Since it is just me, often times I'm super lazy and just make enough dinner for me. Cooking is super relaxing to me and Sunday afternoons are just slow enough so I can take my time to make a good meal. You don't even have to prep for the whole week; usually, I make enough lunch for Monday through Wednesday. Then Weds night, I will make a larger meal so that will be my lunch for the last two days of the week. 

3. Write Out A Packing List 

If your anything like me, I am not a morning person. My brain does not function well until around 9am so my memory is super foggy. I have to lay out my clothes at night before bed or I will forget what I had planned to wear. I know, it's bad but judgement shall not be passed.   Many times I have to make a list before bed of what all to grab out the fridge for lunch. It helps me tremendously and it saves me a morning headache. 

4. Have Backups Lunches Ready

I can be very indecisive sometimes so there have been times where what I prepped on Sunday, I am not really feeling on Wednesday. That is why I always keep some freezer meals ready. Usually it is a casserole I've portioned out or some kind of homemade soup. This saves me from scrambling the night before trying to throw something together. 

5. Don't Force Yourself 

Please whatever you do, do not force yourself to eat something you really don't care for just because it's "healthy". I rarely have a salad for lunch simple because I don't care for it nor does it actually fill me up. I don't know about y'all but who be mad and hungry around 3pm is me with a salad. 

6. Make a Smarter Sandwich

Sometimes you have to go old school with a good ol sandwich and thats ok; just be smart about it! Instead of white bread go with a honey whole wheat (my fav) or 100% whole wheat bread. use tortilla to make wraps instead. Usually we do lettuce and tomato, switch it up, try shredded carrots or sliced apple with turkey meat. Swap out hummus for cheese or avocado for mayo. Got leftover chicken? Use that!

September 19, 2015

Beauty Obsession: Combining High-Low Products

My obsession with skincare has grown so much over the last two years. With my interest in makeup steady growing, I've realized that having great skincare is even more important. As I've been scrolling  through beauty blogs and magazines, I'm constantly seeing high price skincare items being used with low price skincare items. So I thought I would share with y'all a few of my staple products I use every  single day.

September 18, 2015

My Bad Eating Habits

As a Nutritionist and a Public Health Worker, I have my fair share of healthy eating habits. Those same habits I share with my clients and anybody who is seeking a healthier lifestyle. However, as I've stated before, I am nowhere near perfect and I have my fair share of not so good eating habits. Im well aware of what I should be choosing to munch on buuuuuuuuuut I'm human and sometimes I need a sugar fix. or a salty fix. or both. I just thought i would share some of my not-so-good-habits in effort to A) Help me break them and B) to show you I'm human as well.

September 16, 2015

5 Simple Steps To Start Your Morning Off Right

Everybody, from school aged kids to grown adults, would love to be able to sleep in when morning comes. Even if we think our sheets are holding us hostage, we have to fight the urge to snooze the alarm clock for the third time and wake up to participate in life. I know. It sucks!

Luckily, not every morning has to be a drag. Here are 5 simple steps you can try to start your morning off right and have an amazingly productive day!

September 15, 2015

Straight 2 Curly: Holy Grail Products for Natural and Relaxed hair !

*This is not an affiliated post with any of the products, we just really enjoy using them* 

I want to first start off by thanking Eat Well & Sparkle for inviting me to share my knowledge about hair care! I personally think this blog is definitely informative and empowering for young people trying to navigate through the health and beauty world.

15 Reasons Why You Should Be Drinking Lemon Water!

Lemons have always been super popular for their skin rejuvenating properties. Usually by bring a nice glow to the skin. Did you also know that when you add lemon to warm water, the power of the lemon increases so much more! 

September 14, 2015

Youtube Feature!

First, let me start by saying thank you to everyone who has been following the blog so far! The traffic has been amazing and hopefully y'all are enjoying what you see! 

September 3, 2015

Detox Water: The Benefits You're Missing Out On

Whether you call it detox water, fruit infused water or spa water, you know there's something that has to be healthy (and tasty) about these infused waters that everybody's talking about. Well, this is the one time you should go against what your mom taught you and follow the crowd!

If you're trying to lose weight, rid your body of toxins, better hydrate yourself, or you just need a different flavor for your water, detox water is definitely a must in your daily regimen. Some benefits include:
  • Boosts your energy and metabolism.
  • Rids your body of excess toxins.
  • Improves your skin.
  • Helps promote weight loss.
  • Keeps you and your organs hydrated. (Duh! It's water!)

September 2, 2015

Four Vitamins and Minerals Every Woman Needs

One thing that all health professionals can agree on is that women need a certain amount of nutrition that our bodies simply cannot make on our own. Obviously, the best source of essentials nutrients are complete whole foods. We get a good variety of vitamins and minerals through the foods we consume, assuming your're getting a balanced diet. The problem is that we are not 100% sure our nutrients are coming solely from healthy eating. Thank goodness for supplements!

When used correctly, supplements are the perfect sidekick in aiding us when we are not getting adequate amounts of nutrition.  However, with certain vitamins, you can the correct amount you need!

August 27, 2015

Sweet Potato, Black Bean & Fire-Roasted Corn Tacos Recipe

I have a slight obsession with Tex-Mex and Italian food, especially Mexican food! Seriously, I could eat a taco everyday for lunch and have enchilada everyday for dinner. There are very few things I don’t like smothered in cumin, salsa and put between a tortilla. However, the reality is that eating that type of food is not good for the waistline AT ALL. I know, reality can really suck sometimes. Good news is, this recipe can give you that comfortable feeling you get from Tex-Mex but you don’t feel so guilty afterwards!

August 26, 2015

Instagram Makeup vs. Everyday Makeup

If you have some sort of social media, I'm sure you have witnessed the plethora of Instagram makeup artists that have popped up in the recent years showing you how to contour your face, create that sculpted brow, or hide your "imperfections". These before and after pictures show the process of contouring and the vast amount of makeup that goes into making a woman look "beautiful". I'm sure most of you, especially those women who may not know much about makeup, have been overwhelmed and thought, "There's no way I'm doing that, just to get ready to go to work in the morning!" Well I have some news for you:


August 24, 2015

The Frustration with Food Labels

Is it just me or does it seem like every other new item in the grocery store is now chalked full of something “healthy”? Seriously, every time I turn around in a store the words “Full of Fiber”, “Made with Whole Grains” and “Excellent source of Calcium” are screaming at me from multiple boxes. (Inserts eye-roll) Let me tell you all the real deal, if a box has to convince you it is healthy, more than likely, it’s really not.

So You Wanna Lose 50 Pounds???

Well, maybe 50 pounds isn't the exact number. Maybe it's more? Maybe less. Whatever the number is, there are a few points you should take into consideration when trying to lose a significant amount of weight. Now, remember that everything may not work for everybody and these aren't scientific facts that are approved by the FDA, the President and Jesus himself. These are just a few things that worked for me in my own weight loss journey. This is not everything I did, I'll probably have to do a continuation in the near future. Nevertheless, it's up to you to take these into consideration and eventually find what works specifically for you in your own journey.