Recipe Spotlight: Springtime Sunshine Lemony Asparagus Soup

Today I was inspired by the forthcoming weather forecast that shows the snowy days may be over and spring is really, truly on it's way.

To celebrate the forthcoming Spring season I have created a super simple and really robust asparagus soup recipe that is only 5 ingredients.  This is really a soup-er easy recipe ha!

Springtime Sunshine Lemony Asparagus Soup

by Jenniferlyn Kryvicky, MSci. Cand., MBA, CINHC, CFSP
Functional Nutritionist at Shine Total Health, LLC.

  • 1 bunch of thin asparagus, woody ends removed
  • 1 carton of organic vegetable broth
  • 1/3 C Bristol Cream or other cooking Sherry
  • 1 Lemon
  • 3/4 C Raw Cashews

  • Boil asparagus until cooked, reserving water
  • In Vitamix or other high speed blender add cooked asparagus with ~ 1/2 Cup of reserved water to 1 carton of organic vegetable broth and blend on High until well incorporated
  • Add in 1/3 C of Sherry and 3/4 C raw cashew and blend on high until steam starts to come through the top of the mixer

If you do not have a Vitamix, or other high speed blender you can use a normal blender then transfer the blended asparagus/broth/water mixture to a bot and cook the sherry into it.  If you do not have a Vitamix, I would omit the cashews and instead add in ~ 1/3 C coconut milk or heavy cream if not vegan to add the creamy consistency.


Macronutrients and Weight Loss: There is no one size fits all answer to diet.

The thing about weight loss is that there really is no one way to go about it.  

On one hand you can eliminate food groups, such as becoming Paleo, Vegan, Vegetarian, etc. and some will see weight loss.  One another hand you can monitor your intake and expenditure of calories and see weight loss.

What works for one may not work for another, and this is also why the magic weight loss bullet does not exist.

Today I want to share a little more about the COMPOSITION of the calories we eat and how they play a part in our well being.

First off it is important to know that our bodies individually need different caloric levels to thrive, not just survive.  We have seen many resting metabolic rate calculations that can be used to estimate your base caloric needs (assuming a coma-like state, no exercise, etc) however one has shown to be pretty accurate over the long term, the Mifflin St. Joer Equation.

Mifflin St. Jeor Equation
For men: BMR = 10 x weight (kg) + 6.25 x height (cm) – 5 x age (years) + 5

For women: BMR = 10 x weight (kg) + 6.25 x height (cm) – 5 x age (years) – 161

To convert lbs to kg: multiply your weight in lbs by 0.454 to get kg

To convert inches to cm: take your height in inches and multiply it by 2.54 to get your height in cm

Once you know an estimate of you base metabolic requirement to keep your body alive at the current weight, you can start to accommodate for your lifestyle factor by applying some easy multiplication.   Multiplying that BMR number by 1.2 will account for a desk job, and includes the caloric deficit due to lack of activity.  If you eat 1.2 x BMR and then work out for 2 hours each night, you will lose weight because you are creating an additional deficit - just make sure to not fall below that BMR number regularly or for too long.  

If you are very mobile all day or workout many hours per day, you would want to go up to maybe even 1.4 x BMR to accommodate calories that your LIFESTYLE burns.

Anything that you burn above and beyond that is all going to result in body comp changes.

"What about food composition?  And where do calories come from?  If I can east 2200 calories per day I can just sit here and eat 2200 calories per day, right, and not gain weight?  So 2200 calories of snickers and cake?  SWEET!"

Well... yes and no.  

Yes if you are just feeding yourself and willing to deal with no energy, bad mood, poor functioning of many systems.   Brain fog, headaches, lack of motivation, etc. all stem from a crap food diet.

While 1 calorie is 1 calorie, where that calorie comes from is not equal. For instance in every 1 gram of carbohydrate or 1g of protein we get 4 calories to burn and use in our body processes.  For every 1 g of fat we get 9 calories.  Fat is the most energy dense nutrient there is.

We need a combination of carbohydrates, protein and fat every single day to keep our internal processes humming and our energy at a steady level.  

Carbohydrates are easily used for endurance work and training - these are key to sustaining energy!  Think sweet potatoes, potatoes, grains, vegetables, etc.  The lower the glycemic (blood sugar) impact of the carb, the longer it will burn and the more even your energy will be. Sweet potatoes trump white potatoes, and leafy green veggies trump corn or rice.

Proteins are key for body detoxification, kidney health, muscle repair and energy transformation in our body.  Lean meat proteins such as chicken, turkey, bison, grass-fed beef, and healthy cold water fish are good for meat eaters, and or plant based people think nuts, seeds, vegetables (green leafy veggies are actually quite high in protein) spirulina, sea veggies, and beans!  Hemp is also a great source of protein.

Fats are key for brain function and to keep our body fluid and mobile.  Avocado, coconut, nuts and seeds all contain healthy fats.  Coconuts are a great source of medium chained triglycerides which are key for cardiovascular health.

Everything we eat is made up of these 3 macro (large) nutrients, and these 3 macro-nutrients are the only things we get calories - energy -  from.

100 calories of snickers bars are not the same to your body as 100 calories of vegetables or lean meats.  Sure you are getting 100 calories to burn for fuel, but the fact that you are ingesting so much sugar, chemicals and other low nutrient dense foodstuffs will starve out your other processes.  In addition to our macro nutrients, we need micronutrients, such as vitamins and minerals, in order to really perform. The key is that it is QUALITY food over quantity.  You get a lot more bang for your buck in nutrient dense foods than we do refined processed foods.

"So, how many carbohydrates, proteins and fats do I need to lose weight and make sure that I am getting enough micronutrients?" 

The 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends eating within the following ranges:

Carbohydrates: 45-65% of calories
Fat: 20-35% of calories
Protein: 10-35% of calories

The Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for carbohydrates, which is 130 grams per day, is based upon the amount of carbohydrates (sugars and starches) required to fuel an adult’s brain, red blood cells and central nervous system.  This is important because if we do not get enough carbohydrates from our diet, the body will break down protein (which it can turn into glucose) to maintain blood sugar levels and fuel the brain and red blood cells.

This also means that eating too much protein can actually cause the same glucose reactions as eating too much sugar since it is the one macronutrient that the body can use as a carbohydrate if needed.  If the body is stealing the protein we eat for use as glucose to maintain our sugar levels, then it is not using it to repair or to grow our muscles.  There is a cost to eating too low carb.

Here are some ratio examples of different dietary patterns which keep in the safe ranges of each, while allowing for you to find which works best for your individual needs.  The more endurance work you do, i.e. running, triathlon, etc., the more carbohydrate focused you can be, and the more high intensity strength work you do (i.e. cross fit, etc.) the more fat adaptive you can become.

You may have to play around with the ratios to find what works for you and you may need to adjust as your activity levels change throughout the year.  The key is to give it a chance to work for you, so I suggest sticking with a ratio for at least 3 weeks to 1 month to see the effects.

In health!

Jenniferlyn Kryvicky, MBA, CINHC, CFSP is the Functional Nutritionist and Integrative Nutrition Health Coach at Shine Total Health, LLC, as well as an active runner, triathlete,  and whole foods enthusiast. For more healthy living inspiration, connect with her on Twitter, Facebook or her Website.

The Shine Lab Report- Thyroid: How you can have normal labs and still have a thyroid dysfunction

As a functional practitioner, I see a lot of thyroid issues come through my practice even in clients who have "normal" test results. This proves to be very frustrating as many practitioners are simply running incomplete tests, not understanding the full thyroid hormonal cascade.  

I am often asked "How is this possible"?   Simply answered the labs being run are not telling the entire story. 

Let's put on our white coats and safety goggles and head into the Shine Labs to shed some light on the topic of thyroid function!


The pituitary gland releases Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH) which is then converted into mainly the inactive form of thyroid hormone T4 and to a lesser extent the active form of thyroid hormone, T3.  The body can only use the active form, T3. 

The produced T4 is then further converted into either that active T3 or into reverse T3 written simply as rT3.    T3 and rT3 are in competition in the body. 

The Thyroid Pathways

Thyroid symptoms occur when excess cortisol (a hormone released by the adrenal cortex) blocks the pituitary's production of TSH, OR when it prevents the conversion of T4 into the usable T3. 

Additionally, you can have labs that show that your TSH, T4 and T3 values are all "normal" however if you have too much rT3 in your system, then your body will not use the active T3 resulting in thyroid symptoms.  

The quickest way to determine if you have impaired thyroid hormone function when your labs appear normal is to look at the ratio of Total T3 to reverse T3 (TT3/rT3).  In the functional world, we like to see this value over 10 and anything under 10 indicates a sub-optimally performing thyroid system.  


Some symptoms of thyroid dysfunction are: fatigue, cold intolerance, weight gain, memory problems, poor concentration, depression, hair loss, dry skin and eyes, poor nail quality and infertility.

How To Recognize Thyroid Issues


What can possibly effect your thyroid negatively?

  • Stress
  • Infection/trauma/radiation/medication
  • Fluoride (it impedes iodine in the body)
  • Toxins such as pesticides, mercury, cadmium and lead
  • Celiac and other autoimmune diseases
  • Low-calorie diet
  • Liver and kidney dysfunction
  • Inflammation
  • Postpardum

What can help your thyroid perform optimally?

  • Nutrients such as iodine, iron, tyrosine, zinc, selenium, and vitamins E, B2, B3, B6, C, and D
  • Additionally exercise helps improve your sensitivity to thyroid hormones (T3, T4, etc.)

As we can see, we never be afraid to dig a little deeper into our lab results when it comes to thyroid function.  If you feel that you have a potential thyroid issue, speak to your functional practitioner about ways to boost thyroid function naturally and how to determine where the dysfunction is occurring in your system.

The contents of this article are for informational purposes only and are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

Join me for the 21-day Whole Detox focusing on Healthy Body Weight and receive a FREE no obligation Food and Spirit consultation with me!

I will be one of the facilitators this session of the Whole Detox Series for the month of October.  This session is focusing on HEALTHY BODY WEIGHT. 

Our Whole Detox program is uniquely designed to remove toxic barriers in your whole self through the 7 Systems of Health.


If you haven't experienced Whole Detox, it's truly a different detox - one that nourishes rather than depletes you, and focuses on colorful food and living a colorful life!

You are more than just body, mind or spirit – you have several different parts of you that we address, step by step, within this multi-faceted detox program led by detox and health expert, Dr. Deanna Minich. Within the first four days before the actual detox begins, you will have time to prepare physically by getting your shopping list and groceries together, as well as allowing yourself the space to emotionally and mentally get ready for the experience.

Here's just a little more information on the program ---  
  • PREPARATION: Within the first four days before the actual detox begins, you will have time to prepare physically by getting your shopping list and groceries together, as well as allowing yourself the space to emotionally and mentally get ready for the experience.  
  • DURATION: The detox is a total of 21 days between October 5 and October 25. We will complete the program on October 30th, after you have had some time to integrate the changes into your life. 
  • HOW DOES IT HAPPEN: Every day of the detox, you will receive an e-mail with the information you need for the day. 
  • INFORMATION & QUESTIONS: I will lead you through with a kickoff webinar to get you started and then check in with you every week via live webinar to answer your questions and give you more information, especially as it relates to healthy body weight. We also have a Facebook closed group page so that we can answer your questions and have discussions.

On Thursday, October 1st, we will have a webinar with Dr. Minich to help you prepare. She will take us through all we need to know to make your detox experience a fulfilling and fearless one. Every three days for the 21 days between October 5 and October 25, we will focus on one of the Systems of Health:

3 days on the ROOT (adrenal glands)   
3 days on the FLOW (ovaries/testes)
3 days on the FIRE (pancreas)
3 days on the LOVE (heart)
3 days on the TRUTH (thyroid gland)
3 days on the INSIGHT (pituitary gland)
3 days on the SPIRIT (pineal gland)

You will receive an e-mail with the theme of the day and the instruction for what you need to do that day including: menu, thought pattern activity, movement, affirmation, visualization, and meditation.  

This is an outstanding program and one that I am very happy to be facilitating with Dr. Minich.  

As a special benefit to my clients, I am offering discounted entry into all F&S Programs - please email me for the special link for you to use to get the discount.  

Additionally, anyone that signs up for the program under my link below will get personalized support from me during the program totally FREE and a 1 hour no-obligation F&S Consultation with personalized action plan for you to keep and implement at your discretion. That alone is a $150 value and shows how much I support the transformative work we do. 

7 Days to a Clearer Mind and More Energy? Yes Please! The Food and Spirit 7-Day Whole Detox for Energy and Mental Clarity Starts Soon!

My mentor, Dr. Deanna Minich, and my fellow Food and Spirit Practitioners are hosting a 7-Day Whole Detox event starting July 27th that will focus specifically on increasing energy and mental clarity. 
I know what you are thinking.  What exactly is “Whole Detox” and why is this detox different that the mass produced detoxes I see from MLM and Direct Sales companies?
When you think of a detox program, one of the first things you think of is probably an elimination diet, or foods you will have to avoid. Or maybe you think of drinking lemon juice and fasting. You might also connect the detox dots to taking supplements to help your liver or your gut work better to get rid of toxins. Of course, all of these examples are ways that detox has been done and done with little result. 
However, Whole Detox™ is a full-spectrum approach to removing all toxic barriers to your health – not just the food ones. We start with what you eat by giving you a list of foods to select from that are non-allergenic, non-sensitizing kinds of foods for most people. You can select the omnivore or the vegetarian track of menus and recipes. Within the recipes, we intentionally incorporate lots of colorful, whole foods rich in phytonutrients. We do not use any supplements as part of the program, as we believe your practitioner (that would be me!) would be best to work with you on those items specifically.
So, unlike most detox programs, we don’t just emphasize what you need to remove and avoid, but make sure you bring in the foods that help you thrive and be nourished!
In addition to food, we look at the other toxic barriers – stuck emotions, unsupportive relationships, negative thoughts, lack of movement and flow, inability to speak one’s truth, poor sleep and brain fog, and feeling disconnected and depressed.
To address these toxic barriers, we bring in other modalities separate from food, like an emotion log to help you track emotions, activities to re-pattern your thoughts, gentle movement, inspiring affirmations, guided visualizations, and suggestions for meditation.
It’s a full-service menu of options to address your personal toxins, whatever they may be!
Some people have done many food detoxes, but they haven’t connected their food with the larger picture of their lifestyle: their emotions, thoughts, relationships, and how they move, speak, and connect in the world.
Whole Detox™ looks through the larger lens of YOU to make the detox experience personalized so you are optimal and healthy in every way!

More about the 1-Week Whole Detox Program for Energy & Mental Clarity July 27, 2015
This is great, BIG, and huge! Your life will never be the same again…and it will all come from the power of “small”. That’s right. 
Do you remember that phrase, “Small things come in good packages”? Maybe there is something to it. 
We may feel like we have to do it all, and not just do it all, but do it perfectly. The pressure increases, the expectations feel like mighty weights upon our shoulders, the burden appears to never melt away. So, what if we focused on moving towards little things in our life that have great impact?
Contact me for more information on the detox, and I’ll see you there! 

GUEST BLOG POST: Dr. Ruvayn Rubinstein, DC - Can A Neurological Interference Cause Asthma?

I have asked my Chiropractor, Dr. Ruvayan Rubinstein, DC to guest author a post on the topic of Chiropractic Care and common health concerns.  Today he is discussing the possible causation relationship between neurological interference and asthma. 

Can A Neurological Interference Cause Asthma?

First, what is asthma? Asthma is a chronic lung condition that inflames and narrows the airways within the respiratory system, which can cause wheezing, chest tightness, shortness of breath, coughing, and pain. Asthma can occur in all ages, but we are going to focus on the adolescent population.
Studies show that about 1/3 of all asthma patients within the United States are children, it has been shown that parents with asthmatic children lose over $1 billion by staying home from work to care for their children. According to the National Institute of Health (NIH), there is no “cure” for this condition. Traditional doctors treat the cause of asthma with medications that the children must be on for life to control the symptoms; these medications are estimated at $1 billion annually. However structural chiropractor’s main focus is on finding the cause of the patient’s asthma.
What we do as Neurological chiropractors is analyze the spine, checking for any Neurological abnormalities or imbalances. Using a series of examinations which includes digital structural radiographs, digital thermography, and palpation we check the patients spine. It is known that the nerves coming from the mid-back in the spinal column go directly to the lungs and airways, according to Francis Adams, M.D. a structural misalignment present in those areas can be a reason for asthma and breathing difficulties. Also structural and neurological abnormalities in the upper part of the neck cause a back-up of the lymphatics and problems with the tubes draining the middle ear.
So how do specific neurological chiropractors correct these interferences? If the examination shows a structural misalignment in the spine and neurological imbalances, the chiropractor will use specific scientific chiropractic adjustments to correct the misalignment (subluxlations), once these neurological interferences have been corrected the nerves leading to the lungs are now free of interference and therefore working at an optimal level. When information optimally flows from the brain to the lungs and airways that were once interfered with, they can now properly function. This leads to a decrease in the inflammation and to the expansion of the narrowed airways, which in turn leads to reduction of the asthma like symptoms. The correction of the child’s spine restores the structural imbalance allowing for the proper drainage in the middle ear.
There have been many case studies in chiropractic dealing with asthma in children. Ages range from 6 months to 10 years old all with positive results. These results include all of the following, less asthma attacks, no asthma attacks, reduction in medication use and the complete cure of the condition. In a case study by Dr. Fedorchuk D.C  A 6 year-old girl presented to his office with uncontrolled asthma for three years, the patient was on several medications which she took daily with no help. The patient was under specific scientific chiropractic care and after 30 days was off all medications, and x-rays revealed an increase in lung volume.
Another recent study which was published in the Journal of Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health in 2011. The research done at Planet Chiropractic in Douglasville, Ga clinic, reported on improvement in a 20 month old girl undergoing structural chiropractic care and revealed that structural chiropractic may play an important role in managing children with respiratory syncytial virus and ear infections.
This is just a few examples of the wonders that Chiropractic has to offer to the world!  
Call Thrive Chiropractic and set up an appointment today and start living your life to its fullest potential!

Dr. Ruvayan Rubinstein, together with his wife Dr. Sarah Rubinstein, DC are the owners of Thrive Chiropractic in Troy, MI.  You can visit his website at  to learn more about Chiropractic care and health. 

Recipe of the Week: Key Lime Raspberry Gummies

Made with whole food and real fruit, these gummies are both kid and husband approved! This recipe is loaded with fiber (from the raspberries if you keep the seeds intact), vitamins and flavor.

Time: 5 minutes active, 2 hours inactive
Difficulty Level:  Easy

You will need:

  • 1 Cup of frozen organic raspberries
  • 1/4 Cup of key lime concentrate  (you can also use 1/4 C of either regular lime or lemon concentrate if you cannot find key lime concentrate)
  • 1/4 Cup gelatin (I use the Great Lakes Red can
  • 2 Tbs of raw honey or more to taste
  • small pot
  • immersion blender or blender/Vitamix
  • glass dish of silicone molds

In a small saucepan, mix together the frozen fruit and the juice over medium/low heat until the fruit is soft.  Then either transfer to a high speed blender (vitamix) or use a immersion blender to create a smooth liquid.  Return to the burner and then add in the raw honey to allow it to melt in.  Then add in slowly the gelatin and whisk quickly to dissolve it completely.  Once the mixture is totally dissolved, go ahead and pour into a glass dish, or if you happen to have silicone molds of cute small shapes, those may be used as well.

Place into the refrigerator and allow to set for 2 hours.

Play around with the liquids and fruits - try pineapple and ginger, strawberry and basil, watermelon and mint - really the possibilities are endless!



The contents of this website are for informational purposes only and are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.