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Take What’s Best and Leave the Rest!

2011 April 21
by Jess

Hey Everyone!

My name is Marissa Vicario and I’m a Health and Nutrition Counselor and founder of Marissa’s Well-being and Health (MWAH!). I’m super-excited that Jess invited me to guest post on her blog and hope you dig what I have to say. I’m all about holistic health and nutrition and so not about diets, deprivation and calorie-counting. I work with busy, stressed-out urban professionals who want to live healthier lives and I blog on health, wellness, spirituality and self love at

I don’t know about you, but I love to read glossy magazines. You know, the ones chock full of health and nutrition tips, fitness trends and fashion finds?

I used to stockpile their “Eat this, not that” recommendations, swear by their grocery shopping lists and religiously follow their exercise plans in an exhaustive effort to get the gotta-have-them abs on the models adorning their colorful, eye-catching pages.

Yes, it took all of that for me to realize this: None of it works (at least it didn’t for me) and I’m venturing a guess that it most often doesn’t work for you either.  

Yes, I know it’s a hard truth to swallow, but the real truth is you can have those killer abs, magnetizing confidence and healthy glow you see in the magazines. The only catch is you won’t necessarily find it on their pages!

During the time I spent familiarizing myself with the latest and greatest, yet constantly-changing diet trends, I affectionately call it my ‘research years,’ I learned a very important lesson: I am a unique individual with my own nutrition needs. So, no, eating six small meals a day doesn’t work for me and dairy isn’t something I consider a food group or a quality source of protein for that matter.

Our bodies are like highly efficient super-computers that let us know when they are functioning at optimal levels and when they need some extra attention. All it takes is an openness to tune in and listen to what your body is telling you. I’ll be the first to admit, this isn’t always easy. We are constantly on the go, bombarded by noise and conflicting messages. Slowing down and tuning in takes practice – and patience.

But it works if you work it. For starters, here are some questions to ask yourself:

  • What is my ancestry and what foods did my ancestors traditionally eat?
  • How would I describe my digestion/elimination on a daily basis?
  • What is my level of daily activity?
  • How do I enjoy moving my body for exercise?
  • What foods make me feel best? What foods make me feel worst?
  • At what point in my life did I feel my best and how was I taking care of myself then?

Getting clear on the answers to these questions provides a good benchmark for where you are currently and will clue you into what foods and fitness plans work best for you.  After you’ve been listening and experimenting for awhile,  the best way of eating for you will become crystal clear. Maybe it’s a pescatarian diet, perhaps you actually do well on six small meals a day or maybe your body responds best to yoga and not running as you thought.  There is a world of possibility and it’s up to you to discover!

Oh, and in case you were wondering, I still peruse those glossy mags I love so much, but now I know enough to take what I think is best and leave the rest. 

For more information on my health and wellness programs, visit

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4 Responses leave one →
  1. April 21, 2011

    Wow that necklace is gorgeous. So here’s a link to one of my favorite healthy meals (really a side dish, but still) stir fry tatsoi:

  2. April 22, 2011

    My favorite quick healthy meal is, pop a sweet potato into the microwave for 6-7 minutes, and add black beans on top, add a little salt and pepper and BAM! You’ve got a very quick tasty meal. ;)

    I’ve “liked” Erica on facebook! :)

  3. April 23, 2011

    I’ve been to one of Marissa’s cooking classes! She smart, beautiful,& super passionate about health and wellness. Great guest post : )

    Check out what we made!

  4. April 25, 2011

    Hi Jocelyn,

    Thank you so much for your kind words! Hope you are well and I’d love to have you back to one of my cooking classes one of these days :)


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