Seeing so many June resolutions out there, I finally decided I need to eliminate my Splenda habit. Let me tell you, I AM AN ADDICT to artificial sweeteners and I love to guzzle my Fresca  and sweeten those hazelnut lattes multiple times a day.  This is day 3 of detox. :) If you like, I got some tips to share at the end of the post for those who wanna share.

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Brunch Date!!! I met up with a bunch of girlfriends (after my Guardasil Booster – Don’t forget to GET yours!) to catch up at one of my favorite Chicago brunch spots West Egg! The wait at noon was 35 minutes for 4 people, but it was WORTH IT!!!! I ordered a…

Veggie Eggs Benedict

That came with potatoes and fruit on the side! (I was starving by the time my dish came and devoured every last drop on the plate. Oh, and also because it was delicious!!)

West Egg Veggie Eggs Benedict

I love eggs with KETCHUP, and lots of it too. So unpictured is a disgusting amount of ketchup…yum.

West Egg Cafe on Urbanspoon

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Needles Galore!

The weekend also included a trip to get me some accupuncture!! I am a 100% believer in Traditional Chinese Medicine because to me, herbs are a much better (and natural) way to take care of your health than chemicals and injections. These were not to curb Splenda cravings, but more for long-term health purposes (I have super-cold extremities and a REALLY crappy digestive system). I will spare you the 16 needles and leave you with one on  my wrist. :)

accupunture on wrist

The boyfriend was super fascinated that the needles were so thin…and that I wasn’t in any pain. hehehe it was actually really cute.

All those needles required some natural energy from Amazing Grass in the form of a chocolate bar! I was INCREDIBLY surprised at how delicious this was – particularly how well the chocolate and date-based filling combined together to make a bar that was literally, a healthy chocolate candy bar.

chocolate energy bar

However, if I could change anything, i would make this not as sweet because I was close to hurling toward the end of this guy…no matter how good it was. It was definitely an “energy” bar, for 230 calories, but everything was raw, organic, and made my tummy feel good!

green chocolate energy bar

Nomm nomm, check out all the little bits of sunflower seeds, nuts, and fibrous date-based filling!

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After a visit to Hmart (where I uploaded on kabocha and more greeneries) the bf and I hit up our old favorite, Joy Yees!!

Yup, Joy Yees AGAIN!

The bf ordered a much-craved appetizer…Lemongrass Chicken wings!

joy yees chicken wings

And between us we shared this FANTASTIC Shrimp and chicken pineapple fried rice. DEFINITELY one of the best dishes at Joy yees…among many! The shrimp were giant, sweet, and fresh…plus it came in the coolest bowl ever!

Joy yees pineapple fried rice

A Buddists delight, which came with a side bowl of white rice. I don’t know what they do to the sauce, but…it’s delicious!

joy yees buddist delight

Joy Yeees is never complete without a taro bubble tea smoothie that we shared!

joy yees taro bubble tea

Sooo good….Joy yees hits the spot with its giant portions and decent prices. :) That’s why it’s in a college town I guess!

Joy Yee's Noodles on Urbanspoon

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To conclude a fabulous meal, I went home and made THIS delicious dessert! You can guess what it is first, and then I’ll decompose it to show you all the glorious components.

oikos, almond butter, vitatop

If you guessed Oikos with rhubarb strawberry butter & vanilla almond butter, eaten atop a blueberry-bran Vitatop, then you were RIGHT!!!!oikos, almond butter, vitatop dessertGLORIOUS spotlight on the best toppings EVER!!!

galena butter and almond butterI cannot do plain greek yogurt, but with some fruit butters and my Naturally Nutty, I am SET! (Naturally nutty is most definitely my favorite almond butter brand!! :))

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Splenda Talk Continued!

I have been on and off sweeteners multiple times, but every time I quit (usually because there is no soda in sight) it’s not too bad. Now that I want to quit for LIFE, let me tell you…temptation seems to lie on EVERY SINGLE CORNER. (I however, believe th little strips of sugar-free gum are essential for life, so that’s not going anywhere anytime soon. )

splenda

I decided to ask Heather for her advice on artificial sweetener and sugar replacements, as she seems to be a queen of health and rawness. Here’s what she recommends! (*warning*  It’s not a short read, but it’s educational!)

“If you want to use  an all raw sweetener, I recommend soaked blended dates, raw agave nectar, or stevia drops/powder.  If you do use stevia liquid drops, read the label carefully as some of them contain alcohol.

Personally, I’m a maple syrup and stevia (both powder and liquid drops) user.  Many will argue that maple syrup is not raw since it is heated during extraction, but I love it too much to care.  Besides, I don’t eat anywhere near a 100% raw diet. I never use white sugar, but if I’m baking for others, I will use Turbinado sugar in some recipes.  I also use brown rice syrup (not raw).  I rarely buy agave nectar because it is mostly fructose, and although fructose is considered a low glycemic index sweetener, my body doesn’t agree so much with it.
Raw honey is another good option.  Are you vegan?  A lot of vegans opt not to use honey as they consider it an animal product.  I do love some honey on my toast, but otherwise I never buy it because I find it so overpowering in recipes.
Now, coming from a former 4 packet Splenda in her venti iced coffee kind of girl, my advice to you is just throw those little yellow packets away.  That’s what I did.  I promise that once you stop sweetening your food/beverages, those cravings for sugar really will go away.  The thought of how  much I used to sweeten things makes me sick now – honestly.  You can do this.  It’s a hard habit to break, but so worth it in the end.  Plus, it’s gets easier everyday.”

On Sunday, I Bought my first mini-box of Truvia. What sweeteners do you use?!

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