Thursday, 27 October 2016

Here is a nutritional and seasonal grab and go. Pumpkin Breakfast Cookies!

Refer back to our blog post ‘Gluten Free Pumpkin Spice Muffins’ and follow the cooking directions for your own pumpkin puree.


·         ¼ cup melted coconut oil
·         1 cup rolled old fashioned oats
·         1 cup quick cooking oats  
·         3/4 scoop of Vanilla Protein Powder 
·         cup mix of dried cherries, blueberries and cranberries (or whatever combination you desire)
·         cup raw pumpkin seeds
·         ¼ cup ground flaxseed  
·         1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
·         ½ teaspoon cinnamon
·         ½ teaspoon sea salt
·         ½ cup homemade pumpkin puree
·         2 eggs, beaten

Preheat oven to 350 F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a small bowl warm coconut oil (either microwave, inside preheating oven or on the stove top).

In a large bowl combine both kinds of oats, protein powder, dried fruit, pumpkin seeds, ground flax, pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon and salt. Add pumpkin puree, eggs and warmed coconut oil and honey. Stir until fully combined.

Scoop cooking mix onto baking sheet and flatten (cookies won't spread while baking).

Bake for about 15-20 minutes until edges are lightly browned.

Once cool, I place into a ziplock freezer bag and take out as needed. 


recipe reference : with a few additions  

Tuesday, 25 October 2016

Bowen Therapy

This weeks special edition Wellness Wednesdays YouTube features  Elsie Kelly, RMT explaining her advanced technique, Bowen Therapy.  

Have you ever wondered what is Bowen and how it works? View the video interview now : Wellness Wednesdays - Bowen Therapy

What is Bowen Therapy 

Bowen is a sequence of rolling movements that the practitioner applies using their thumbs or fingers over specific sites on the body. There are frequent, but essential, pauses throughout the session to allow the body to respond and begin healing. 

What Bowen Does 

Bowen triggers the body's innate capacity to heal on its own. This can result in deep relaxation, resetting muscular tension, lymph drainage, and decrease pain. 

Bowen is appropriate for all ages and all stages of health, from newborns to the elderly. It is so gentle that there is no possibility of harm. 

Conditions Treated

  • Soft Tissue Injuries 
  • Digestive and Bowel Problems 
  • Earaches, Ear Infections and Migraines
  • Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome 
  • Menstrual and Hormonal Irregularities 
  • Groin Pain, Pelvic Tilt and Uneven Leg Length 
  • Respiratory Problems 
  • Pregnancy Before and After Birth
and much more

To book your initial Bowen appointment please go online, Book Now ,or use the MindBody app, 

For more information please contact Elsie Kelly at 

Sunday, 23 October 2016

Halloween Sugar Overload

Halloween is a well loved holiday for kids and the one time of the year they can wear that well loved costume out in public without a second glance. Although, let's be honest, my daughter has rocked a ladybug costume to Zehr's in the middle of the summer without a care. However, as an ND, this is probably my least favourite holiday from a health perspective. Don't get me wrong my kids participate in the costumes, the trick-or-treating and yes, the candy but the amount of sugar that often comes with Halloween is mind boggling. Let's be real, no one needs a suitcase full of candy, especially kids. So here are a few tips to minimize the sugar intake and some ideas for treats that are not candy.

Minimizing the Sugar Intake

In our house, we have adopted the Candy Fairy. The magical fairy who visits our house the night of Halloween, collects (most) of their candy and leaves them a present. We trick-or-treat only on our street so we don't collect a tonne of candy to begin with. When we get home, I go through all the candy for safety but also to weed out the candy that is a for sure no go (think artificially coloured lumps of sugar like Nerds). Then our kids get to pick a few pieces they want to have from the allowed candy, usually we do 5-6 pieces. Their candy is theirs- they can have it whenever they want. If they want to eat it all at once go for it. For breakfast? Sure. Then the rest of the candy gets put in a bag and left for the Candy Fairy. The Candy Fairy will leave a small toy in exchange for the candy- a Lego set, a night light, craft kit, etc. This has been a HUGE hit in our house, my kids are more pumped for their toy than they are for the candy by leaps and bounds, and they still get all the fun and enjoyment of dressing up and trick-or-treating. I should note, my kids are 5 and 2, so they are young enough to believe in the fairy and to love toys. Older kids, obviously won't be as receptive.

I have also heard some other ideas like allowing kids to eat their candy as they please for the following day or two and then the rest is given away. Another idea from a fellow ND is allowing their kids to have their candy but having them measure out the amount of sugar they get in each piece so they start understanding nutrition- this is a great idea for the older kids.

Minimizing the Sugar Output

It's not just trick-or-treating where our kids are inundated with candy- school parties are a staple these days. Here are a few candy free ideas to send to school with your kids:

  • Mini Craft Kits: Michael's has a great selection of craft kits, and at 60% off right now! I grabbed this little monster kit for about $5 and it's enough to make 18 monsters. Just divide the pieces into little bags for a DIY craft. Of course, you can also assemble all the monsters with your kids and hand out the pre-made monsters too. There were more kits of witches and Frankensteins, stickers, etc.
  • Check out your dollar store: Dollarama has an awesome selection of little trinkets that can be handed out instead of candy 
    • Halloween themed pencils- add a small bag of pretzels to the end to make witches brooms
    • Erasers
    • Straws
    • Stickers
    • Rings, Necklaces, Bracelets
    • Mini wooden figures to be coloured in

  • Glow Sticks: Is it just me, or do kids not go nuts for glow sticks? Dollarama also sells packs of 5 glow sticks for just over a dollar. These are also great for kids to use/wear on Halloween night while trick-or-treating.
  • Play-doh Packs: Homemade play doh is a cheap and easy option for a school Halloween treat. Make it more exciting by adding craft pieces like toothpicks, pipe cleaners, feathers, googley eyes or stickers to the play-doh for kids to make their own creation. You can use a basic play dough recipe or a salt dough recipe that can baked and hardened.
Healthier Treat Options

When sending treats to school or for a Halloween party try some of these healthier options. (Most of these are Pinterest inspired)

  • Banana Ghosts- Bananas cut in half with chocolate chips for eyes and a mouth.
  • Orange Pumpkins- Peeled mini oranges with mini piece of celery
From One Little Project
  • Apple Chips
  • Popcorn- Use Halloween themed baggies to pack it
  • Apple Pops- see below
  • Apple Sauce Packets- add some decorations to make them into monsters or witches

For the Trick-or-Treaters

Many of the above ideas work well for trick-or-treaters as well but some other options could be:
  • Raisin Boxes
  • Fruit Bars- These are still pretty much all sugar but at least made just from fruit with no added sugar or artificial flavours or colours.
  • Juice Boxes- Same as above, pretty much just sugar but none of the additives as long as it's 100% fruit juice.
At the end of the day, indulging in candy and sweets for a day isn't the end of the world. But for me the real issue is the sheer volume of junk food kids get trick-or-treating that has become the normal Halloween night. I don't want my kids to miss out on the fun of Halloween- the costumes, the trick-or-treating, the parties, etc. but I want to avoid the gorge of high fructose corn syrup, GMOs, artificial dyes, artificial flavours, preservatives, etc that often comes along with it all. So, what will I be sending to my daughter's school Halloween party? Apple Pops!

Apple Pops

Directions: Core the apple and slice horizontally into rings. To prevent from browning rub with a slice of lemon. Make a small cut into the side of the apple ring to help the popsicle stick insert easier. Melt chocolate chips and drizzle on top. Add a bit of coconut oil to the chocolate to make it a bit thinner (if desired). Decorate with unsweetened coconut, raisins, dried fruit, crushed nuts (if not going to a nut free facility), mini chocolate chips, etc. Pack into individual treat bags and enjoy! 
-Dr. Jessica ND

~The Coach House Team~

Thursday, 20 October 2016

Cuddle up, its soup season! 

Soup is a great easy meal that can be jam packed with nutrients! If you want to get the best nutrient content use the bone broth recipe, on our previous blog post, for the stock portion in the ingredients.

A sweet and savoury belly warming soup is this Butternut Squash and Apple Soup!

This is a classic from one of my favourite recipe magazines, the LCBO Food and Drink! They suggest you can use pumpkin but I decided to use butternut squash and I am glad I did!

  • ¼ cup (50 mL) butter
  • 3 cups (750 mL) chopped onion
  • 6 cups (1.5 L) chopped butternut squash
  • 2 cups (500 mL) peeled and chopped apples
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) brown sugar
  • Pinch ground cinnamon
  • Pinch ground allspice
  • Tiny pinch cayenne
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) salt
  • 5 cups (1.25 L) bone broth stock (recipe on blog) or you can use organic stock or Stock Exchange stock if desired
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper

Remove from heat, blend until smooth with a hand blender or in a food processor.
In a large pot, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until softened, about 3 minutes. Add the pumpkin and apples and cook until softened, another 3 minutes. Add the brown sugar and spices then pour over the stock and simmer for 30 minutes.

I garnished mine with some fresh thyme and oven roasted pecans ( dry roast pecans at 350 for 10 min) and a sprinkled with powdered sage when they were cooling.

It is a winner in my books! 

A new recipe I just tried is from the LCBO 'It's A Wild Thanksgiving' booklet. It is a Kale Chestnut and Wild Mushroom Soup. I did make a few changes, such as I couldn't find chestnuts anywhere so I used a hazel nut and pecans combo. I also didn't' want to just garnish with mushrooms I needed some in the soup! 

Kale Hazel Nut Pecan and Wild Mushroom Soup

  • 2 tbsp grass fed butter
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 1 organic apple (I used Fuji) peeled and chopped
  • 1 cup of each hazel nut and pecan chopped
  • Sprinkle of fresh thyme 
  • Sprinkle of sage (i used powered) 
  • 6 cups of bone broth or another stock 
  • 4 cups of chopped kale with centre - stem removed 

Melt butter in large pot over medium heat. add onion and cook until lightly golden, 5 min. Add apple, nuts, thyme, sage and stock. Bring to a boil for 10 min. Stir in kale and cook for an additional 4 min.

Using a hand blender or placing cooled soup in blender, puree.

Season with slat and pepper.

Use fried mushrooms as garnish.

Final soup for today... 

Thai Coconut- Peanut Sweet Potato Soup

  • Ingredients 
1 tbsp oil
1 cup chopped onion (from 1 medium-large onion)
1 jalapeno, chopped (seeds removed, if less heat is preferred)
1 large clove garlic, minced
3 tbsp Thai red curry paste
1 1/2 large sweet potato, peeled and chopped 
1 can (400 mL/14 oz) coconut milk
3 cups bone broth or organic veg/chicken broth
1/3 cup natural peanut butter, i used crunchy but you can use smooth if desired
3 tbsp minced fresh cilantro, plus additional for garnish
salt, to taste
1/8 tsp cayenne (optional)

  • Heat oil in a pot, i use cast iron, over medium heat. 
  • Add onion and saute until just softened. Add jalapeno and garlic; saute 1 minute. Stir in curry paste.
  • Add chopped sweet potato, coconut milk and bone broth. Cover and cook until sweet potato is soft, approx. 20 minutes. 
  • Puree with an immersion blender
  • Stir in peanut butter, you can blend again if you used crunchy and would like it to be smoother
  • Sprinkle cilantro and a pinch of salt. Stir, and adjust salt to taste. Add cayenne if additional heat is desired.
  1. Delicious! reference
  2. Hope you try some new soups this season! If you have a great recipe to share please send it our way :) Happy cooking !
The Coach House Team 

Liquid Sugar

Health Canada lists juice as a healthy beverage option, however, you may be surprised by what juice actually is. Whenever you think juice, you should actually think 'liquid sugar.' When fibre is removed all you are really left with is sugar. It also becomes much more concentrated- one cup of juice actually provides the sugar of multiple pieces of fruit, with out the benefit of fibre and even some of the nutrition. One cup of apple juice actually contains a whooping 30 grams of sugar! 

Want a visual of that? 
Grab a kitchen scale and your white sugar and measure it out. That's what you would consume in one cup of apple juice. 

It might also surprise you to know that the recommended upper limit of sugar intake for the ENTIRE DAY is only 25 grams. Which means, that one cup of juice sets you over your limit in one gulp. We all know cola isn't a great option and full of sugar, however, it actually contains LESS sugar in one cup (29 grams) than the juice.

Because many tend to find water less than appealing, lately water enhancers have flooded the market, including products like vitamin water. How do they compare? That one bottle of vitamin water- 32 grams of sugar. Sure the amount is more than 250 mL but who doesn't easily finish a bottle? And those added 'vitamins'? For the most part are very low dose and generally are synthetic in nature which means they aren't well absorbed any way. The water enhancers- both liquid or powdered form- are either sugar and artificial colours/flavours or 'no calorie' which really translate to chemical sweeteners mixed with artificial colours/flavours, which come with their own health implications.

Though it may not seem that exciting, water is always your best bet when it comes to beverages.
If you don't find water appealing try some of these easy tips to making it more exciting:

  • Try brewing an herbal tea and chill to create your own iced tea. Green tea is loaded with antioxidants. Fruit flavours work well too.
  • Try adding in some fruit to jazz it up
    • Citrus- the staple
    • Berries
    • Pineapple
    • Cucumber
  • Try adding herbs like mint 
  • If you prefer carbonation both low sodium soda water and sparking water are great and any of the above can be added to these as well
In reality, juice should really be viewed as a sweetener, like sugar, honey, maple syrup, etc, and treated as such.

Eat fruit. Drink water.

~The Coach House Team~

Watch, share and subscribe to our YouTube channel and see this and many other health and wellness videos!

A Hub For Health In Waterloo 

Wednesday, 19 October 2016

Tips for packing and wearing a backpack/shoulder bag

Carrying a heavy load that is poorly distributed can cause a number of problems including muscle strain, headaches, neck, back and arm pain, and even nerve damage. It pays to pack it light and wear it right. Here's some general information regarding how to choose, pack, and wear a backpack or a shoulder bag.


Choose carefully:
Go for lightweight vinyl or canvas. Pick a pack that has two wide, adjustable and padded shoulder straps, along with a hip or waist strap, a padded back and plenty of pockets.  

Pack it properly:
Make sure the backpack contains only what is needed for the day or the activity. Distribute the weight of the contents evenly. The total weight of the filled pack should be no more than 10 to 15 per cent of the wearer’s body weight.

Wear it right:
Both shoulder straps should always be used, and adjusted so that the pack fits snugly to the body without dangling to the side. Never sling a backpack over one shoulder.  You should be able to slide a hand between the backpack and the carrier’s back.

It's a fact! More than 50 per cent of young people experience at least one episode of low back pain by their teenage years. Research indicates one cause is improper use of backpacks. So pack it light and wear it right!


Choosing a Shoulder Bag:
Whether your bag is a purse or home to your laptop, choose one with a wide, padded adjustable shoulder strap.

Packing a Shoulder Bag:
Divide the contents among multiple pockets to help distribute the weight and keep items from shifting. Your bag should not weigh more than 10 to 15 per cent of your body weight.

Carrying a Shoulder Bag:
Don't always carry your bag on the same shoulder, switch sides often so that each shoulder gets a rest. Try not to lift the shoulder on which the purse is carried, ideally wear the strap across your chest.

Carry well so you do not run into future problems! Be health proactive!

The Coach House Team

Dr. Mark's video is available on our YouTube channel- A Hub For Health In Waterloo. Watch, share and subscribe!

Wednesday, 12 October 2016


Cranio what? 

Meet Leah Huber, amazing RMT with additional training in Craniosacral Therapy! Our Special Edition of Wellness Wednesday sits down with Leah and she sheds light on this advanced modality.  Click on the link below to watch our interview.

Booking is easy. Visit and click on the 'Book Appointment' tab. 

Hope you enjoy and learned something new :)

A Hub For Health In Waterloo 

Thursday, 6 October 2016

I think I am in love with homemade Larabars! Our last Larabar recipe had a tropical feel with the pineapple and coconut. If you haven’t tried them I highly suggest you do! Yet as the weather begins to turn I find myself craving more dark berry and pecan flavours. Thus I went on a Pinterest mission to find exactly that. Success! A blueberry Larabar recipe yet I changed it up a little bit. I added dried cherries and blueberries instead of only blueberries. So here is my take on the bars. 

Blueberry and Cherry Larabar Recipe
  • 1 cup raw pecans
  • ½ cup raw cashews
  • 1 ½ cups pitted dates
  • 1 cup of dried blueberries
  • 1 cup of dried cherries
  • Splash of vanilla

Toss all ingredients in a food processor until it becomes a paste.
Line a pan with parchment paper and press the mixture into the pan.
Place in refrigerator for a few hours.
Cut into squares.
I put my bars in the freezer, not only to control myself from eating the entire batch, because they are delicious partially frozen as well.

I hope you enjoy!


Wednesday, 5 October 2016


The hard work and vision finally came to be on the lovely day of October 5th 2015. It is hard to believe it was a year ago today that we saw our first clients at The Coach House Therapeutic Centre in Uptown Waterloo.

The year has flown by but we managed to squeeze a lot in! With your support and input we have added two wonderful practitioners to the Coach House team, Jillian Sauder and Dr. Mark Bird. Offering highly trained and amazing practitioners who genuinely care about your health and well-being is one of our many goals. We are thrilled with our team and proud to be a part of your health and wellness. We continue to offer free talks to help educate and inform each and every one of you about areas of interest. There are still two talks scheduled for October and November of this year, so don’t miss out! We will continue to be avid members of the Uptown Waterloo family and participate in their events. Our newest gem is the launch of our YouTube Channel- A Hub For Health In Waterloo! Today is the first official ‘Wellness Wednesday’ video regarding liquid sugar. With these videos we hope to help you navigate through the confusing world of health. This way you and your family can be healthier and proactive about your health care.

We would like to thank you for all your support and participation this year, you have made it unforgettable! We hope you had as much fun as we did and we can’t wait to continue to help you rehabilitate and be proactive with your health!

Thank you again