The first appointment I ever booked with a nutritionist was with Joy McCarthy.
I had seen a friend completely overhaul her health and regain her life from her sessions with Joy and knew I would be in great hands.
She did not disappoint. At the time I was living in Vancouver so we spoke over the phone. Joy was fun and easy to talk to, laughed that we had the same food tastes, and helped me open up about areas of my health and diet that I wanted to improve.
Joy's follow-up recommendations helped me to make huge strides in my health, including many habits I follow to this day.
Since moving to Toronto, Joy has become a friend and an inspiration. I took her Eat Well Feel Well course a couple of years ago and loved it, seek advice from her often, watch her segments on the Global Morning Show and always take her advice when it comes to finding healthy treats in the city.
Early this year Joy and I met her once favourite coffee shop for almond milk lattes. Unfortunately Mylk Uncookies is now closed but this video serves as a fond memory.
Joy is someone who radiates health and happiness from the inside out.
She speaks about health with such light and enthusiasm that it's hard not to want to change your life for the better, eat some kale, pop some goji berries in your mouth and detoxify your makeup bag after speaking with her.
She is kind, honest, has a lot of integrity and is a positive role model for so many young women. I'm grateful she was able to make an impact in my life.
Now for some fun Q&A...
Q: What inspired you to become a holistic nutritionist?
A: When I realized the healing power of food and the effect that changing some lifestyle habits would have on my body, I was able to heal from major hormonal imbalance. These experiences inspired me to go back to school and learn how I could help others experience incredible health and to heal from their own health issues.
Q: What tips do you recommend for eating well on a budget?
A: Buy in bulk when healthy foods are on sale, shop seasonally and buy extra to freeze. For example, when blueberries are in season, but extra and freeze them so you can enjoy them all year long. If you buy superfoods that are exotic varieties they can be more pricey. This is when choosing super foods that grow close to home can go a long way. Apples, kale, onions, blueberries, and raspberries have an incredible variety and amount of phytonutrients and they are not overpriced even when it's winter. Also, prepare your own food and eat out less. Eating out is far more costly than making your own food even if you are buying organic. Lastly, North Americans waste on average 40% of their groceries! So plan out your meals a week in advance and then choose one day per week where you batch cook and utilize all the ingredients you bought so you have no food waste.
Q: What are some of your tips for detoxing daily?
1. Drink freshly squeezed lemon and water every morning on an empty stomach (you knew I was going to say that ;) 2. Think "veggie-centric". Eat vegetables at every meal (at least lunch and dinner) and snacks. 3. Exercise every day. Move your booty and get your heart rate up every single day. You don't need to spend endless hours at the gym, get outside for a brisk walk/run everyday and this will help your body more efficiently detox. 4. Eat more kale, ginger, garlic, fresh herbs, beets and artichokes. These are some of my favourite detox foods! 5. Join my 10-day joyous detox in January! :)
Q: What are ideal post workout foods?
A: It's important to refuel with protein and carbs after a workout. This is when a smoothie will come in handy especially if you are strapped for time. You can included a whole lot of nutrients into one cup!
Q: What is your advice to staying healthy and happy during the holidays?
- Don't over commit yourself to too many parties. Go to the festivities you truly want to and enjoy every minute.
- Refuse to obsess over every calorie and if you decide to indulge in eggnog or chocolate, make sure it's of the highest quality -- a little goes a long way.
- Exercise every day. Exercise will keep your serotonin levels up and it and will help to keep your appetite hormones in check.
Q: Any tips for holiday drinking in moderation?
A: Avoid holiday cocktails full of sugar. Instead choose wine and make sure you hydrate well. Drinking 1 glass of water between every alcoholic drink will minimize the chances of a hangover and help you drink less.
Q: Best almond milk latte in Toronto?
A: Now that mylk uncookies café is no longer around (but they still sell their cookies at the holt's café), I haven't found a café that makes their own almond milk! However, my fave café right now for alternative healthy drinks made with love is Tori's Bake Shop.
Q: Favourite breakfast foods?
A: Pancakes, of course, when I have more time in the morning to cook, or toast with nut butter, fruit and always a tea. I love green tea! Sometimes I will make a smoothie but I really like to chew my food. Adding some cacao nibs to your smoothie adds a great crunch actually!
Q: What is in your fridge right now?
A: Tons of veggies, fruits, almond and hemp milk, hemp seeds, a variety of nut butters, organic butter, eggs and goat cheese. In my freezer I have lots of frozen veggies for last minute meals (rapini, kale and broccoli), a whole organic chicken which I will probably roast on Sunday night, salmon and ground turkey to make burgers next week.
Registration for Joy's 10 day Detox is now open! More information here!
Fore more info on Eat Well Feel Well, joyous recipes and more, visit Joy's website here