Jennifer Hanway

Enliven Your Lightest, Brightest You

Jennifer Hanway is a Holistic Nutritionist, Bio Signature Modulation Practitioner and Certified Personal Trainer, originally from London but now living in Newton Centre and working in Back Bay, Boston.

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Ask Jenny: Staying Healthy on a Long Haul Flight

I’m traveling to Vietnam soon and want to make sure I am prepared for the long flight. Do you have any tips on how to prepare and what to bring?
— Jacquey, Boston

Hi Jacquey - how exciting! I love to travel and have been lucky enough to visit some incredible places, and Vietnam is definitely on my bucket list. This trip would absolutely be considered long haul, but the majority of the advice below can be applied to both long haul and short haul flights:

1).  Fuelling on the Flight

You would be surprised what foodstuffs you can actually bring on a plane, and if I’m flying any longer than 4 hours I always pack a huge salad, with a ton of plants, some great protein (quite often plant based as it tends to travel well, such as chickpeas or lentils, and some healthy fats). I will pre-order the gluten free meals on the plane, but usually just pick out the fruit and salad.

I also pack small packs of nuts, often an avocado, small packets of collagen or plant protein powder, and protein bars such as Epic, Rx or Bulletproof Collagen Bars, and some herbal teas, and packets of Four Sigmatic Mushroom coffee (I buy most of these from Thrive Market). I’d much rather be over prepared than under prepared!

Intermittent Fasting can be helpful whilst flying, and if I am taking an overnight flight (which I avoid as much as possible) I certainly will not eat the meal served after take off, and will try and go straight to sleep. I have tried IF whilst taking a day flight from Boston to London, but personally I just find this too hard! If it is a shorter flight (anything under 4 hours) I try not to eat on the flight to help with digestion and gut health.


2) Supplements To Take On The Plane

Save room in your hand luggage by taking a minimum of supplements into the cabin with you - I put just my shelf stable probiotic (I love New Chapters Probiotic All-Flora) in my hand luggage, and check the rest.

The other supplement I like to travel with is a greens powder to stir into some water, or even chlorella or spirulina powder or tablets. Airplanes are one of the most toxic places on earth and flying creates a ton of oxidative stress in the body so giving your body an extra boost of antioxidants will help you feel more alert and energized post flying.

3) Sleep Aids and Accessories

I like to wear my blue blocking glasses on any flight longer than 4 hours (and especially long haul) to help protect me from all of the blue light on board that can mess with my circadian rhythm and sleep/wake cycle.

I never, ever take a long flight without my Bucky Eye Mask, and silicone ear plugs. I also like to take some lavender oil, or pop a few drops on my neck pillow before I travel. I personally don’t use compression socks, but if you feel more comfortable with them or have circulatory issues then they are definitely a good idea.

I do take melatonin on a long flight to help me sleep, and to help me on to the local time zone when I arrive. I find 5mg is too much for me (and most people), so I usually do half of one of this.


4) Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate

This is probably a given, but staying hydrated on a long haul flight is a must. I usually buy two big bottles before I board, and refill my travel bottle. If your home airport doesn't have a water fountain with a built in filter then head to the Starbucks and ask them to fill it up as their water is triple filtered! I also like to travel with my Brita Water Filter Bottle so I can filter the water on the plane too.

5) Beating Jetlag

Jetlag really can be a killer, but there are some strategies you can implement to ease the pain! Get on the local time zone as soon as possible, expose yourself to as much daylight as your can, and try and earth yourself by standing barefoot on grass or sand as soon as you can after landing. Whilst exercise can feel like the last thing you want to do 30-40 minutes strength training can really help beat jetlag, but if this is impossible a brisk walk is also wonderful. Eat light, protein and veggie based meals throughout the day, with some carbs in your evening meal to help boost natural melatonin production.

If you want more tips on healthy sleep, my new book ‘24 Hours to Less Stress, More Sleep’ is out in September! To pre-order your copy, save $5 and receive all the free bonuses head to: https://www.jenniferhanway.com/lessstressmoresleepbook

This post does contain affiliate links but I only recommend products I love and use personally or with my clients!






Mental Health Matters with New Chapter's Mood Support Probiotics

This post is written in partnership with New Chapter, however all opinions are my own. I only work with and recommend companies whose products I love, and I’m so excited to share these with you!

 

As a holistic gut health expert I am fascinated and thrilled to see how the benefits of taking a probiotic has become part of our daily health routine. When I first started recommending probiotics to clients eight years ago they were difficult to find, and the formulations nowhere near as effective as they are now.

When New Chapter reached out to me to try their new line of probiotics I of course jumped at the chance! I have been taking their Probiotic All-Flora once daily for over a year now, and have been loving the positive changes in my digestive health (I’ve experienced a marked decrease in bloating, cramps and constipation), so I couldn't wait to try their new targeted range: Mood Support, Weight Management and Women’s Daily.

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I encourage my gut health clients to think of probiotics in the same way we think of vitamins and minerals - most of us are aware of how eating a diverse range of foods and taking smart supplements provides us with the range of vitamins and minerals needed for optimum health, and how increasing our intake of certain foods and supplements can provide us with the vitamins and minerals we need to help us deal with health problems or reach our wellness goals.

 It is important for us to understand that we have a wide diversity of species throughout our GI tract and mucus membranes (our colon alone houses over five hundred different species), each of them needing different strains and strengths of probiotics to thrive.

New Chapter’s new line of probiotics are a welcome solution to help us care for our diverse microbiome. All of New Chapter’s probiotic formulas are considered a 2-in-1 as they contain live probiotics as well as prebiotics (prebiotics are the food source that nourishes our gut flora). Each product contains DNA-tested probiotic strains clinically studied for their benefits and delivering in the CFU (colony forming units) amounts appropriate to that type of bacteria.


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New Chapter Mood Support Probiotic could not have come at a better time - at present I am juggling running my business, taking college classes in Advanced Nutritional Therapy, and writing my book on Stress and Sleep! Whilst I love all of these things and relish the challenge, my stress levels are higher than usual, and I have been experiencing some anxiety that is out of the norm for me. Incorporating the Mood Support Probiotic has helped me to manage and support my stress levels, and the periods of anxiety are both shorter and less frequent.

With May being National Mental Health Awareness Month I’ve been talking a lot about the link between great gut health and great mental health, as an estimated 90% of serotonin, one of the neurotransmitters that helps us feel relaxed and happy is made in the gut. Poor gut health can also contribute to higher levels of cortisol, our stress hormone, so prioritizing a healthy gut is key to relieving stress and anxiety. New Chapter’s Mood Support Probiotic with its mood enhancing* strains of probiotics and prebiotics, combined with their proprietary targeted herbal blend of passionflower and lavender is now a key part of both my gut health and mental health routine, and I highly recommend it becomes part of yours too.

And some other simple ways to help boost your mental health this month? Ensure you get outside at least once a day, try journaling or keeping a gratitude log (I write out five things I am grateful for every morning before starting my work way), include some gentle exercise, stretching, or yoga, and take time out to enjoy some of life’s small pleasures, such as taking yourself out on a date, or buying yourself some flowers!

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*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

 

Breakfast Smoothie: Layered Apple Pie

In honor of #NationalApplePieDay I’ve created this delicious Layered Apple Pie Breakfast Smoothie suitable for both my Guided Gut Healing and Lean and Clean Programs!

My top tip is to make a double batch of the stewed apple mixture, and serve it with some coconut or almond yoghurt and a scoop of collagen for a quick breakfast later in the week…

For the stewed apple (makes 2 servings):

  • 1 medium apples

  • 1 teaspoon coconut oil

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Wash the apples and chop into small squares, and simmer in a small amount of water until soft (approx. 5 minutes) Drain, then mash and mix together with the cinnamon and coconut oil. Cool slightly before using in the smoothie.

For the vanilla smoothie

  • 20g vanilla collagen or plant based protein powder

  • 1 tablespoon almond butter

  • 1 tablespoon chia seed

  • 1/2 zucchini, chopped

  • 1 cup almond milk

Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.

Layer the smoothie in a glass by adding the stewed apples, pour on the vanilla smoothie, then topped with toasted mixed nuts.

We love Thrive Market for all our pantry staples!






Mini Meal: Iced Superfood Hot Chocolate with New Chapter Fermented Black Seed Powder⠀

I’ve re-booted my favorite Superfood Hot Chocolate recipe for Spring, and the timing is perfect for April's #NationalStressAwarenessMonth!⠀ ⠀


New Chapter’s Fermented Black Seed Booster Powder blend of fermented herbs are wonderful for mitigating the effects of stress on the body, and the fermentation process ensures all of those wonderful phytonutrients are easy for my body to digest. It pairs perfectly with the cacao, mint and cinnamon in this recipe, creating a recipe thats tastes and feels decadent, but that is so good for you!⠀ ⠀


Iced Superfood Hot Chocolate with New Chapter Fermented Black Seed Powder⠀

Place all ingredients in a blender and pulse until frothy! Serve over ice and drink immediately.

If you are looking for more stress relieving recipes pre-order my new ebook ‘24 Hours to Less Stress, More Sleep’ here!



Ask Jenny: What Does Insulin Have To Do With Fat Loss?

Dear Jenny, as part of your Lean and Clean Program you recommend testing your insulin levels. What does insulin have to do with fat loss?
— Helen, Chestnut Hill, MA


Regulating insulin and blood glucose is one of the key tools I use my Lean and Clean program, and by asking my clients to test their blood glucose every morning I can monitor their progress internally as well as externally. Your blood never lies!

When we eat carbohydrates our pancreas releases the hormone insulin, in response to the rise in our blood sugar (glucose) levels. Insulin helps us to shuttle the fuel (the glucose in the blood) into our muscle and fat cells - think of it as the key that unlocks the cell to let the glucose in. Within the program I call this insulin sensitivity, and my aim is to make you as insulin sensitive as possible so you efficiently use your food for fuel rather than storing it as fat.

A high carbohydrate diet combined with a lack of exercise means we become insulin resistant, rather than using our food as fuel we start to store it as fat. If we are eating too many carbohydrates and our cells have already taken in enough glucose the excess will be converted and stored as both subcutaneous fat (the fat underneath the skin) and visceral fat (the fat around the organs and belly).

If this continues for long periods of time then we develop insulin resistance, which is the precursor to Metabolic Syndrome and Type 2 Diabetes. In insulin resistance the cell either stops responding to the insulin, preventing the glucose from getting in to be used as fuel (and therefore being returned to the bloodstream to be stored as fat), or the pancreas stops secreting insulin as there is already so much in the bloodstream (in some cases both these effects occur).

My Lean and Clean Program lowers blood glucose and increases insulin sensitivity through my targeted tools of nutrition, fitness and wellbeing:

  • My low carb, high fibre diet with quality proteins and some good fats which help to stabilize and lower insulin levels (whilst simultaneously managing our hunger hormones leptin and ghrelin).

  • Strength training, HIIT and walking are used to increase insulin sensitivity and help us burn body fat.

  • Stress management and quality sleep are prioritized as when our stress hormone cortisol is raised it in turn raises insulin. We are also more likely to store belly fat at times of stress.

Testing your blood glucose at home is a super simple finger prick test, and you can purchase a meter from CVS, Walgreens, or by using the link below. Take the test before you have breakfast or drink your coffee, and ideally I am looking for a fasting blood glucose level of between 80-90ml.

Blood Glucose Meter - Amazon

For more information on my Lean and Clean Program head to:

Lean and Clean Program




Ask Jenny: Which Foods Can Help Me Cope With Stress?

Hi Jenny - I’ve heard you mention that there are some foods that can help with stress, and I need all the help I can get! What are these foods, and how can I add them to my daily diet?
— Sam, Boston

Great question Sam, and after Mercury in Retrograde and tax season, I know we all need as much help as we can get to help us manage our stress!

When considering foods for stress management, there are two key factors to address: one, keeping your blood sugar and insulin levels stable and two, ensuring maximum nutrient density.

1) Balancing Your Blood Sugar

Aka, the science behind being ‘hangry’! A high carb and high sugar diet leads us to have high insulin levels, which means we do not burn our food for fuel, and instead store it as fat. We will also experience the blood sugar rollercoaster of highs and lows in our blood glucose levels, leaving us at times feeling wired or experiencing a sugar high, quickly followed by a crash in energy and mood. This constant swinging between high and low blood sugar causes us to release cortisol (our stress hormone), as our body considers this (quite rightly) as a dangerous event. In addition, when our cortisol levels are high this can spike our insulin levels, setting us up for a vicious cycle of high insulin/high cortisol, which can lead to weight gain, fatigue and brain fog.

A high fibre, veggie packed diet with some great quality protein and goods fats in one of the keys to regulating blood sugar balance (and therefore cortisol release). As part of my Lean and Clean Program I recommend that every meal consist of 20-30g of protein, at least 2 servings (large handfuls) of vegetables, and 1-2 servings (tablespoons) of good fats, with 3-4 meals a day, every 3-4 hours. For example:

Breakfast: Superfood Smoothie - 20g collagen powder, 1 tablespoon almond butter, 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed, 2 handfuls spinach, 1.5 cups almond milk

Lunch: Salmon and Avocado Salad

Mini Meal: Hummus and Veggie Sticks

Dinner: Zucchini Noodles with Chicken and Sugar Free Pasta Sauce

This will ensure our blood sugar levels stay stable throughout the day, whilst still giving enough time for gastric clearance (digestion of food), and ensuring we spend some time burning stored body fat for fuel.

2) Ensuring Maximum Nutrient Density

Our body’s need an incredible number of vitamins and minerals to complete even just the basic metabolic functions that keep us alive. For a healthy immune, reproductive and digestive system, not to mention great hair, skin and nails, we need to ensure that our diet is as nutrient dense as possible, and that every calorie we consume counts.

In addition to this, at times of stress our body will ‘steal’ these much needed nutrients in order to make stress hormones such as cortisol and adrenaline. For example, magnesium, a mineral that is used in over 300 essential processes in the body ( and that our diets are woefully lacking in) is needed in high amounts to make cortisol.

Great gut health is the first step to ensuring that we do not just have adequate, but abundant vitamins and minerals to thrive, not just survive. We could be eating the healthiest diet on the planet, but if we are not absorbing the nutrients from our food our efforts are wasted. We are not what we eat, but what we absorb. Time and time again when I am reviewing my client’s lab work I see signs of malabsorption of nutrients stemming from poor gut health.

Simple ways to improve our gut health include eliminating processed foods, taking a good quality probiotic daily, including GI healing foods such as bone broth and collagen and managing our stress levels! My 28 Day Guided Gut Healing Program is designed to heal the gut and rebalance the microbiome, ensuring optimum gut health and nutrient absorption.

Once we have great gut health we can focus on nutrient density (or bang for your buck) foods! The adage ‘Eat The Rainbow’ is especially true here, as by eating a wide range of brightly colored vegetables and fruit means we are getting a diet full of anti-oxidants and phytonutrients, which are key as co-factors for our metabolic processes and to help with stress management processes.

When choosing your fruits and vegetables go for the varieties that are brightly colored, or have deeper hues - for example, deep green leafys such as spinach and kale, pink grapefruit and bright red tomatoes. Consider adding nutrient packed herbs and micro greens to your salads, and ensure adequate phytonutrients from dark brown and purple foods such as berries, purple cauliflower and broccoli, organic coffee and red wine, and my personal favorite, dark chocolate, which is also packed with stress relieving minerals calcium and magnesium!

For more details on my Lean and Clean Program, click here.

For more details on my Gut Healing Program, click here.

For more details on my Stress and Sleep Program, click here.


Breakfast Smoothie: Pecan Pie

Happy National Pecan Pie Day!

Whilst I can't deny that Pecan Pie is delicious, its crazily high sugar content make it a little too decadent for an everyday treat. I've created this sweet, thick and creamy Pecan Pie Superfood Smoothie so you can enjoy the taste whilst keeping blood sugar stable and providing a ton of micronutrients.

Pecans are a great source of inflammation lowering, skin loving Omega 3 fatty acids, and are packed full of much needed minerals including magnesium, manganese, zinc and copper. 

Buy your pecans unsalted, and if they are roasted they should be dry roasted to avoid inflammatory fats. And just like all nuts and seeds once opened they should be stored in the freezer to prevent oxidation.

Pecan Pie Super Food Smoothie

  • 20g vanilla collagen or plant protein powder

  • 1/2 cup frozen cauliflower rice

  • 1/4 apple

  • 2 tablespoons ground flaxseed 

  • 1 tablespoon pecan butter (I love @artisana organics) or 1 tablespoon chopped pecans 

  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla essence

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 1.5 cups oat milk

Place all ingredients and blend until smooth.

Perfect for my Gut Healing and Lean and Clean Programs. 


Lean and Clean: Coconut Protein Pancakes⠀

These Coconut Protein Pancakes are one of my absolute favorite recipes from my new 8 Week Lean and Clean Program, and they are perfect for a light and bright Spring Sunday brunch! I love to serve these with a side of fresh berries and a drizzle of yoghurt.

Coconut Protein Pancakes⠀

  • 1⁄4 cup of coconut flour⠀

  • 1⁄2 scoop vanilla vegan or collagen protein powder ⠀

  • 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed⠀

  • 1 egg⠀

  • 3 egg whites⠀

  • 3/4 cup of almond milk⠀

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract⠀

  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon⠀

  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder

  • Pinch of Himalayan salt⠀

  • 3 tablespoons coconut oil (for cooking)⠀

Mix all ingredients (except the coconut oil) in a large bowl. Heat the oil gently in a non stick pan. Pour in 1/4 cup of mixture, and cook on a medium heat until golden brown on both sides (about 3­ mins each side).

My 8 Week Lean and Clean Program is available in person and online, and you can save $100 if you sign up by 4/31!  Click HERE to learn more.

Ask Jenny: I Work Out at 5am, So When Should I Eat Breakfast?

I’m a mom of 2 kids and work a full-time job in Boston, so 5am is the only time I get work out during the week (at the weekend I can work out mid morning). This means I do not have time to eat breakfast unless I get up at 4am (which is just not happening). What should I do?

Anne - Newton, MA

Great question Anne, and congratulations for getting in your workouts with your busy schedule and time commitments!

Fasted workouts (working out on an empty stomach) can actually be a great tool for blood sugar regulation and helping you build metabolism boosting muscle, if you use them in the right way.

Your weekly workouts (you mentioned you work out 3 times a week, Monday, Wednesday Friday), i.e. the ones you do fasted should be no more than 35-40 minutes long, and of a medium intensity (how hard you work). Good choices for these workouts could be 30 minutes of running, spinning, or a lighter weights sessions.

At the weekend, when you have eaten breakfast is the time for your more intense (harder) workouts, such as a heavier lifting session, Barry’s or Orange Theory, or a boxing workout. Just make sure you finishing eating at least an hour before working out!

The benefits of working out on an empty stomach (fasted), mean that your body has to tap into its stored carbohydrate, and then your body fat as sources of energy (your body will use the following for fuel in this order 1: alcohol, 2: stored carbs, 3: your body fat). So you will help balance your blood sugar, and get your body using fat for fuel. Hormonally you will also get a boost of growth hormone and testosterone, which is great for helping you build lean muscle.

However, fasted workouts can be challenging for your adrenal health and thyroid health, which is why I recommend only working out fasted at a medium intensity, and for those struggling with hormonal issues (high cortisol, irregular periods, adrenal fatigue) a yoga flow or brisk walk is a better option than the options listed above.

As part of my Lean and Clean Program you will receive workout suggestions personalized to your goals, schedule, available equipment and hormonal status. You can start anytime, from wherever you are in the world, and there is a $100 discount until 4/30! For more details head to:

https://www.jenniferhanway.com/leanandcleanprogram




Live Well: Daily Habits For Managing Our Body’s Healthy Inflammation Response

This post is written in partnership with New Chapter, however all opinions are my own. I only work with and recommend companies whose products I love, and I’m so excited to share these with you!

By now we know that managing our body’s inflammatory response is critical to health and longevity, but why is it so important, and how we can consider this is as part of our daily wellness routine? 

 What is an inflammatory response? 

 Not all inflammation is bad, in fact inflammation is our body’s natural defense mechanism against harmful intruders. Upon detection of a threat (for example a cut on your finger) cellular chemical signalers trigger a response from our immune system to help deal with the danger. Acute inflammation is a natural and healthy part of our immune system, and usually subsides within a number of days. 

 Chronic (or systemic) inflammation is different. It is a low level, constant activation of the immune system that can contribute to the development of disease. The body may detect what it considers as internal threats such as toxins and food particles in the bloodstream, and signal for the immune system to set off a response, much like in the case of acute inflammation. However, if there is no threat to respond to the immune system may start to attack the body’s healthy tissues which can lead to auto-immune conditions and other chronic diseases. 

Four Easy Ways to Manage Inflammation 

 1)    Eat A Whole Foods Based Diet

By eating a non-processed, whole foods based diet we provide our body with foods that it recognizes as fuel, not as a threat! Our GI tract is the one of the first lines of defense for our immune system, and overly processed, chemically laden foods can damage the integrity of its lining, causing food particles to get into the bloodstream and set off a damaging immune response. Ensure you are getting a wide range of antioxidant rich, rainbow colored fruits and vegetables in your diet to help manage inflammation on a daily basis and boost overall health and wellbeing. I eat at least 7 servings of fruit and vegetables a day and try to get in as many different colors as possible for maximum micronutrient benefits! 

2) Limit Exposure to Toxins 

Inflammation causing toxins don’t just get into our bodies through food, our household and personal care products can be a source of inflammation causing chemicals too. Consider non-toxic natural household cleaning products and do the same for your personal care products. Start by switching out your deodorant, body lotion and lip balm as these go on large and absorbent areas of the skin and have the most potential to be damaging to health. Clean skincare and make-up products have come a long way from when I started to use them over a decade ago, and they now easily rival their conventional counterparts. 

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3) Nature’s Anti-Inflammatories 

Herbs such as ginger and turmeric have been used for centuries as gentle pain relievers and as a way to naturally mitigate inflammation in the body - there are over 12000 peer-reviewed studies on the benefits of curcumin, the active ingredient in turmeric! Adding one or both to soups, stews, salad dressings and hot drinks is a simple and delicious way to boost your diet and overall health and wellbeing, and I love to make a nourishing and soothing Golden Milk Latte with grated ginger and turmeric before bed. 

4) Add Zyflamend Whole Body To Your Daily Supplement Regimen

New Chapter’s Zyflamend Whole Body helps your body to balance a healthy inflammation response at the cellular level. In-vitro studies have shown that Zyflamend mitigates part of the signaling process that triggers the body's inflammatory response, meaning it can help prevent the damaging inflammatory cascade that can be present in chronic inflammation.

Not only does Zyflamend Whole Body contain a blend of 10 herbs that help manage inflammation and relieve minor pain and soreness (such as turmeric, rosemary, green tea and ginger), but pre-clinical testing shows that this combination of ingredients shows a greater inhibitory effect than the calculated sum of its parts. 

It takes a lot for me to add another supplement to my daily regimen but since taking Zyflamend Whole Body I have noticed a considerable decrease in joint and muscular aches and pains, and as I love to work out at least 5 days a week it has become an integral part of my morning routine! 

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Contact: jenny@jenniferhanway.com