7 Dentist-Approved Hacks for Pearly Whites On Your Wedding Day

The following post is a collaboration with Gipsy Lane Advanced Dental Care to promote natural, sustainable and low-maintenance oral health initiatives. Plus, if you’re getting married this summeror within the next few months, like methese chemical-free alternatives edge out those “quick fix” whitening strips you’ll find on a mainstream cosmetic aisle.  

Smiling Bride

Newsflash: summer’s not over yet which means wedding season is still underway! During these next several months, lovebirds will be “a-flutter” planning their special day—from venues and entertainment to decor and photography.

But speaking of those all-important wedding photos, what newlywed couple doesn’t want to dazzle on-camera? Shouldn’t your smile reflect the brilliance of this momentous occasion?

For teeth that match the bride’s pristine designer gown or the groom’s crisp collared shirt,  dentists recommend a whitening regimen about 3–4 weeks before your nuptials take place. So, from professional treatments to holistic techniques, these strategies will make your smile sparkle—even after the “I Do’s.”

1.   Opt for DIY Whitening with Turmeric.

Containing high levels of the potent antioxidant curcumin, this superfood spice reduces oral inflammation and flushes out plaque deposits. Whisk together baking soda, coconut oil and  turmeric until a paste forms, apply onto your teeth, then wash after five minutes.

2.   Abstain from Dark Colored Beverages.

Drinking coffee, red wine and black tea will cause stain residue to permeate the grooves within your enamel. Gradually, this discoloration could spread or even become permanent, so refrain from consuming these liquids at least one month before the wedding.

3.   Break-Up with Your Overused Toothbrush.

Scrubbing with the same tattered toothbrush for extended periods of time is a wasted effort, according to the American Dental Association. So, replace your toothbrush every three monthsor when the bristles appear worn-out—to mitigate tartar buildup.

4.   Enlist Help from Oral Health Experts.

Spending just one hour at the dentist’s office can transform dullness into radiance, giving you visible confidence and irresistible allure on your special day. Cosmetic whitening procedures are both safe and painless, without risk of oral infection or long-term damage.

5.   Use Apple Cider Vinegar as Mouthwash.

Incorporating this natural elixir into your tooth care regimen can prevent gum disease and alkalize pH balance with a concentration of minerals, acids, enzymes and pectins. Every morning, just rinse your mouth with organic apple cider vinegar, diluted in water.  

6.   Resist those “Sweet Tooth” Cravings.

Pulling into the Krispy Kreme drive-through is not just detrimental for your waistline—it’s also hazardous to that smile. When these refined sugars latch onto your teeth, bacteria begins multiplying which creates an environment for cavity-inducing plaque to grow.

7.   Choose Plant-Based Snacks Instead.

Sinking those choppers into raw fruits, veggies and nuts is a healthy alternative to mindless munching—not to mention, an effective shield against bacteria. The crisp texture offers abrasive benefits that eradicate surface stains and lubricate salivary function.

Alright. So, here’s the takeaway message: by combining the professional expertise of your dentist with nutritious eating habits and homeopathic remedies, you’ll achieve a photo-ready smile to last your entire nuptials—plus, all those honeymoon selfies! 

honeymoon selfie

PSA: For even more healthy hacks worth smiling about, Gipsy Lane’s blog has you covered.  

Thirty Things to Do Before I Turn Thirty (Well…Here’s Hoping, Anyway!)

Two weeks ago, I turned 25. Cue the quarter life crisis. I’m supposed to be adulting now, but instead I’m just over here binging Netflix.

Turns out, “halfway to 30” doesn’t mean “existential questions answered.” Shocker. Guess I’m still the clueless human I was at 24.

Alright…so, my twenty-something years are numbered. So, I’m nowhere close to nailing down my purpose—outside of moscato and HIMYM. So, life hasn’t taken the course I once assumed it would. So what?

Age doesn’t have an expiration date, and 30 isn’t even that old. Besides, five whole years stand between me and the Big Three-0. Five years of adventures, opportunities, aspirations and undertakings. Five years to define (and re-define) my goals. Five years to make. it. happen. 

On that note, you obviously know what’s coming:

30 before 30 bucket list

Drumroll, please…

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Phew…that was one monster post. If you stuck it out, thanks for being a trooper! Now, what’s on your “30 Before 30” bucket list? Promise I won’t steal your brilliant ideas—unless I need more inspiration when I turn 40!

Breadless Toast: Madness, Genius or Just Plain Deliciousness?

Today’s kitchen creation is being served with a confession on the side.

I’m not a bread person.

Did you even know that’s a thing? To not like bread? My secret shame. Nope, can’t even order avocado toast for Sunday Brunch despite my all-consuming avoddiction (P.S. that word DOES exist. Look it up).

But *insert sigh of relief* order is now restored to the galaxy because I’ve discovered a breadless alternative—sweet potato toast. A.K.A. the latest foodie trend currently taking over my life. Forreal.

And if plant-based + gluten-free + downright delectable sounds like the ultimate jam, then prepare for a takeover on your life too.

I rest my case. Times three, in fact. Because you’re about to experience…

sweet potato toast three ways

Just grab a sweet potato, then go culinary crazy with all the fixings. And here’s some inspo to get those creative juices (not to mention, appetite!) flowing.


Ingredients:

sweet potato toast savory ingredients2 tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 small can Chickpeas

1/2 tsp. Ground Paprika

1/4 tsp. Ground Cumin

1 Juiced Lemon

                             sweet potato toast sweet ingredients

2 tbsp. Chopped Raw Almonds

1 tbsp. Organic Almond Butter

1/2 tsp. Ground Cinnamon

1/2 Sliced Apple

sweet potato toast spicy ingredients

1/2 tsp. Sriracha Sauce

4-5 Spinach Leaves

1/2 Hass Avocado

1/4 tsp. Sea Salt

                                                                                                                   


 Preparation:

  1. Cut the Potato into 3 slices about, 1/4-inch thick, leaving the skin on.
  2. Put each slice in a toaster and cook for 5 minutes, or until the texture becomes pliable but still firm.
  3. Drain and rinse the Chickpeas, then transfer 1/2 into a food processor.
  4. Add the Lemon and 1 tbsp. Olive Oil, then puree this mixture until a hummus consistency forms.
  5. Place the remaining Chickpeas on a foil-lined baking sheet and pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees.
  6. Drizzle them with 1 tbsp. Olive Oil, Cumin and Paprika, then cook in the oven for 10 minutes, or until the Chickpeas become crispy.
  7. Spread the hummus over the first Potato slice and top with the roasted Chickpeas to make savory toast.
  8. Chop the Almonds coarsely and slice the Apple, then spread Almond Butter over the second Potato slice.
  9. Top with the Apples, Almonds and Cinnamon to make sweet toast.
  10. Mash the Avocado until a guacamole consistency forms and spread over the third Potato slice.
  11. Top with the Spinach and Sea Salt, then drizzle on Sriracha to make spicy toast.

Seriously…moment of silent introspection for these wondrous little tubers.

Alright, moment over. Girl’s gotta eat!

Get Your Summer On with a Superfood Smoothie Bowl {Guest Post}

Summer is synonymous with vibrant colors, fresh bounties and bold flavor combos. So, keep your body fueled, taste buds tantalized and wellness revitalized—compliments of this deliciously nutritious Smoothie Bowl recipe featured below.

Fortified with immune-boosting antioxidants from Nutri Maqui Superfruit Juice—plus, essential nutrients from leafy greens, seasonal fruits and plant-based proteins—this satisfying snack will keep you healthy, energized and going strong all summer long. And it contains no artificial additives, so indulge to your heart’s (err…stomach’s) content!


Ingredients:

For the Smoothie Base:

1 cup Unsweetened Cashew Milk

1 tbsp. Nutri Maqui Superfruit Juice

1/2 cup Organic Baby Kale

1/4 cup Fresh Blueberries

For the Smoothie Toppers: 

1 tbsp. Organic Almond Butter

1/4 cup Raw Organic Cashews

1/4 cup Organic Raw Almonds

1/4 cup Fresh Blueberries

1/2 tbsp. Coconut Flakes

1/2 Sliced Avocado

Ingredients for Nutri Maqui Smoothie Bowl

Preparation:

  1. Combine the Cashew Milk, Nutri Maqui Superfruit Juice, Baby Kale and Blueberries in a blender, then puree until the texture is smooth and creamy.
  2. Transfer this smoothie mixture into a bowl, then arrange the Cashews, Almonds, more Blueberries and Avocado slices in an “Instagram-worthy” pattern on top.
  3. Finish off with a drizzle of Almond Butter and sprinkle of Coconut Flakes, then enjoy—as if you even need an invitation!

Smoothie Bowl with Nutri Maqui

All content and graphics in this post are courtesy of Nutri Lifescience, LLC.

Simple Steps to Feel Amazing Every Day this Summer

Summertime is the official spokes-season (see what I did there?) of relaxation, vitality and pure amazingness. In fact, my personal mantra during these gloriously sun-drenched months is to Feel Amazing Every Day through self-care rituals, alfresco explorations, fitness commitments and superfood sustenance.

 And in that spirit of epic expectations, lemme divulge my Top 4 no-fail wellness pointers, along with statistical snapshots on why you should care. Then, we can ALL proceed to make this summer one for the history books!

feel amazing every day

1.  Start Each Day with a Yoga Flow.

  • Stimulates physical energy
  • Alleviates emotional stress
  • Cultivates breath awareness
  • Forges a mind–body connection
  • Promotes full-body movement
upward dog

upward dog, anyone? ignore the…err…unflattering angle!

2.  Say “Hell Yeah” to Whole Foods.

  • Gives the body nutrient–dense fuel
  • Satiates hunger for extended periods
  • Curbs refined sugar cravings over time
  • Encourages a mindful eating practice
  • Replaces “artificial” with all–natural
amazing grass pancakes

protein pancakes topped with almond butter drizzle

3.  Spend Quality Time Outdoors.

  • Improves respiration & circulation
  • Reduces stress for mental clarity
  • Offers the benefits of Vitamin D
  • Motivates cardiovascular activity
  • Fosters appreciation for nature
amazing grass smoothie 2

RayBan shades and 95–degree Florida humidity…optional

4.  Slurp on Amazing Grass Smoothies.

  • Contains 20g of plant-based protein
  • Yields 2 servings of fruit & veggies
  • Includes 7 alkalizing leafy greens
  • Supports lean muscle development
  • Regulates optimal digestive health
  • Provides these wellness benefits:
    • USDA-certified organic ingredients
    • non-GMO & gluten-free verified
    • no added sugars or preservatives
    • vegan, kosher & pareve compliant
amazing grass smoothie 3

organic pea, hemp, chia and quinoa…OH MY!

Psssst…wanna experience all that AMAZINGNESS for yourself this summer? Then, don’t forget to enter my Amazing Grass Protein Superfood Giveaway! Check out the details below and indicate which flavor you’d prefer: Original, Vanilla or Chocolate–Peanut Butter.

instagram giveaway

***Open U.S.–based entries only.  Winner selected at midnight July 9.***

 

Make Your Mornings Count With a Dash of Matcha Madness

So, guess I’ve been feeling the Eastern vibes lately. Between last week’s Korean Boribap recipe and this week’s love letter to all things matcha, I should probably just book a flight to Asia. Donate to my travel fund, and I’ll get right on that!

No takers? Shocking. Fine then…living vicariously through my taste buds isn’t the worst consolation prize. Lucky for this girl, my fiancé’s sister did go to Asia recently, and she brought me back some authentic ceremonial-grade Japanese matcha.

Talk about earning brownie points with the future sis-in-law. Give me pretentious sounding superfoods, and I’m your friend for life. Well played, Kristin…well played.

If you’re a matcha virgin, it’s literally just powdered green tea. Observe:

matcha powder

But what makes it so freaking fabulous? Check out these impressive stats:

  • Yields more antioxidants than any other superfood including goji berries, acai, kale and spinach.
  • Contains a powerful blend of essential nutrients like fiber, chlorophyll, zinc, magnesium, and Vitamin C.
  • Strengthens immune function, promotes anti-inflmmatory benefits and works like a natural detoxifier.
  • Boosts the metabolism to burn calories more efficiently, and regulates healthy cholesterol levels.
  • Reduces physical and mental stress, enhances concentration and balances fluctuating mood states.

Way to kick some nutritional ass, Matcha! And that’s why I jumpstart each morning with this little green powerhouse I’ve become *slightly* dependent on. Sure, you can drink it like the socially acceptable human you are. OR you can get creative, steal a chapter from my cookbook…

And breakfast will never be the same.

matcha for breakfast

MATCHA GINGER OATMEAL

Ingredients:

1 cup Cashew Milk (unsweetened)

1/2 cup Whole-Grain Oats

2 tsp. Matcha Powder

2 packets Stevia (organic)

1 tsp. Almond Butter (all-natural)

2–3 pinches Sesame Seeds

1/4 tsp. Ground Ginger

Preparation:

  1. Pour the Cashew Milk into a small saucepan and preheat the stovetop burner on a medium-high setting.
  2. Add the Oats and stir occasionally until the mixture begins to boil, then reduce to a simmer and continue stirring until the texture thickens.
  3. Remove the saucepan from the stove, add the Matcha, Ginger and Stevia, then stir to combine.
  4. Transfer the oatmeal into a serving bowl, then top with Almond Butter and Sesame Seeds for extra crunch. (NOTE: feel free to use whatever toppings you prefer…I just choose sesame seeds in keeping with our Asian theme!)

matcha oatmeal before pic

matcha oatmeal after pic

MATCHA BLUEBERRY PANCAKES

Ingredients:

1 cup Cashew Milk (unsweetened)

3/4 cup Spelt Flour (or, a GF alternative)

1/3 cup Fresh Blueberries

1/2 tbsp. Matcha Powder

2 packets Stevia (organic)

2 tsp. Almond Butter (all-natural)

Preparation:

  1. Pour the Cashew Milk and Spelt Flour into a mixing bowl, then stir vigorously until no lumps remain.
  2. Add the Blueberries, Matcha and Stevia into this batter, then stir again to combine.
  3. Preheat the stovetop burner on a medium-high setting, place a griddle on this burner and coat with non-stick cooking spray.
  4. Ladle the batter in small batches onto the griddle, allow to cook about 2 minutes on each side, then transfer the pancakes to a serving plate once they’re done.
  5. Spread the Almond Butter over the pancake stack and garnish with leftover blueberries, if desired.

matcha pancakes before pic

matcha pancakes after pic

Reader Poll (just because I’m curious): Do you cook with matcha, or are you a purist who thinks tea is for drinking, thankyouverymuch?

A Tastier-than-Takeout Asian Flavor Invasion

My parents live in Orlando, about 15 minutes away from Disney World (tough break, huh?), and I recently visited them over Memorial Day weekend. No, for real…seeing my parents was the main motivator. Not my fault the Happiest Place on Earth shares their same zipcode!

Anyway, during that visit, we made reservations at Morimoto Asia—a new Eastern fusion restaurant in Downtown Disney (I’m a nonconformist Disnerd who refuses to call it “Disney Springs,” by the way). I ordered their signature menu item Korean Boribap, a traditional half-rice/half-barley dish mixed with kimchi, bean sprouts, sushi grade fish and egg yolk.

And now…I want boribap for like every single meal. Damn you, Morimoto. Chinese takeout has lost its appeal for all eternity. So, what’s a girl to do when these random boribap cravings hit? Create my own riff on the original. Duh.

In this version, I swapped out the kimchi for kale, made it vegetarian by opting for mushrooms instead of meat, then tossed in radishes for some color and texture. Also, for the sake of convenience (read: laziness), I just used rice. Let’s call the finished product Boribap 2.0—a healthy weeknight “quick fix” when you’re feeling Asian but can’t bear the sight of another to-go carton loaded with MSG. Yep, this recipe’s a game changer!

meatless marvels korean boribap

Ingredients:

2 cups Baby Kale

2 Eggs (cage-free)

1 cup Jasmine Rice

1/2 cup Mushrooms (sliced)

1/2 cup Radishes (sliced)

2 tbsp. Sesame Oil

2 tbsp. Rice Wine Vinegar

1 tbsp. Soy Sauce (low sodium)

1 clove Garlic (minced)

Preparation:

  1. Pre-heat a stockpot on the highest stovetop setting, pour in 1 1 /2 cups Water and bring to a rolling boil.
  2. Add the Jasmine Rice, reduce the heat to low, cover the stockpot with a tight-fitting lid and allow the rice to simmer, stirring occasionally, until all the water is absorbed.
  3. Pre-heat a skillet on the medium stovetop setting, coat the bottom with 1 tbsp. Sesame Oil and stir in the Kale, Mushrooms and Radishes, then sauté the vegetables until they soften.
  4. Pre-heat another skillet on the medium stovetop setting, coat the bottom with cooking spray, crack the Eggs directly into the skillet and allow them to pan-fry until the yolk sets.
  5. Whisk together the Soy Sauce, Rice Wine Vinegar, Garlic and remaining tbsp. of Sesame Oil in a small mixing bowl.
  6. Pour this mixture on the rice, stir thoroughly to combine and portion out the rice into 2 serving bowls.
  7. Distribute the vegetables evenly over the rice, then top each bowl with a fried egg for some hearty protein.
Korean Boribap

that yolk though…mildly foodgasmic.