Tips on Managing Sweet Cravings

Halloween. Thanksgiving. Winter holidays. All of these have a (deliciously) common them of gathering, cooking, indulging, and often overheating the things we crave most. Many people have a love/hate relationship with this time of year, and sometimes try to put extreme restrictions in place to avoid savory, sweet or “bad” foods all together, however almost every time they can’t sustain this, and they feel like a “failure” for not living up to their remarkably high expectations of themselves. I’ll let you in on a secret – most people think eliminating or restricting sugar will be easy before they actually do it. When they don’t succeed in eliminating the sweets, they somehow feel like they’ve failed at an easy task. The truth is, sugar can feel more addictive than heroin, and just cutting this out of your diet is one of the hardest things, physically and mentally, to do – especially during a time of year when it’s everywhere.

Breaking the cycle of craving and feeding our addiction is difficult, but not impossible. Sugar in particular is especially tricky because the more you eat, the more you want. It’s truly an addictive substance. It’s also mind blowing how many foods and beverages tuck sugar away that we don’t even think should have it. Awareness is the first step to decreasing your daily sugar consumption. Reading labels and understanding the many forms of sugar in packaged foods is important. Pay attention for the following: Sucrose, fructose, dextrose, “processed” honey, malt syrup, corn syrup, high fructose corn syrup, artificial sweeteners like aspartame, acesulfame potassium, neotame, saccharin, sorbitol, mannitol, xylitol, sucralose, cane sugar, cane syrup. Do your best to avoid these ingredients in the foods that you buy.

Here are some of my tips for slowly reducing processed sugars in your diet:

  1. Take 1 full week just to read your labels. Take note of your go-to foods, and just notice where sugar is continually getting int your diet.
  2. Choose 2 of your common go-to foods that have processed sugars and try to eliminate these for at least 2 weeks.
  3. Purchase a food based sweetener such as honey, maple syrup, coconut palm sugar or dates, and try cooking with these in place of sugar for 4 weeks. This gradual substitution will slowly and effectively shift your tastebuds to appreciate subtle sweetness over highly sweet processed sugars for a more sustainable replacement of sugar.
  4. Around the holiday time – don’t try to eliminate sugar completely. Allow yourself one (appropriately portioned) sweet treat daily for at least a week, then maybe every other day after that. Limit yourself, but don’t overly restrict yourself unless you know you have an uncommonly high willpower.

Top Tips For Overcoming A Sweet Tooth:

  • Sugar is a drug, take your consumption of it seriously and be mindful as you gently ease off of it.
  • Only eat when hungry, journal and observe cravings when they arise before indulging in them.
  • Swap cane sugar or refined corn syrup products for natural sweeteners like raw honey, grade B maple syrup, coconut sugar/syrup, or pure stevia.
  • Drink 8 glasses of water and herbal tea throughout the day to stay hydrated.
  • Eat a mainly plant-based diet filled with natural fiber to keep your body feeling satisfied and your aid in lightness of digestion.
  • Support your body with helpful nutrients – B vitamins, vitamin C, chromium, calcium, magnesium, and the amino acid L-glutamine all help to curb sugar cravings. These are abundant in whole grains, legumes / beans and nuts and seeds.


Lindsay Kluge M.Sc, CNS, LDN |

Holiday Stress Busters workshop



Wednesday, October 26th | 6 to 7PM

Free spine & posture screenings | 5 to 6PM | No appointment necessary


The Beet at Ellwood’s


River City Chiropractic Wellness

What to Expect

When you are under any kind of stress, life threatening or just irritating, your body is stimulated.  Organs and glands change gears, speeding up or slowing down activity as needed. Body functions, or physiology, prepare for defense.  Your adrenal glands are activated, and increased amounts of energy are ready to be used.  Blood pressure goes up, digestion slows, muscles tense, and your overall physiology prepares to help you survive.  Join us to learn about ways to alleviate physical, chemical, and emotional stress.  Enjoy this holiday season by learning strategies that reduce your stress and improve the quality of your life and health.

Did we mention you enjoy a complimentary dinner during the workshop?

Prior to the class, join the River City Chiropractic team for a FREE Posture Analysis and learn how much the results can reveal about your overall health, not just that of your spine! It’s quick, painless way to transform your health and learn how chiropractic care can improve your posture, remove stress to your spine and nervous system, and bring your body back into balance!


FREE class AND screenings!


For dinner headcount purposes, please let us know if you plan to attend the class!

Screenings are come first serve & take about 10-15 minutes, but feel free to let us know you’ll be stopping by!


Email or for assistance.

Natural Thyroid, Hormone & Weight Loss seminar



Tuesday, October 25th / 6:30 to 8:30PM


The Beet at Ellwood’s


Hyperthyroidism is a little understood disorder which results in symptoms that stems from hormone dysregulation. According to the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE) 27 million suffer from a thyroid condition and 50% are undiagnosed. Surprisingly, 90% of women over 40 suffer from subclinical hypothyroid.  Although there are 27 known forms of Hyperthyroidism, conventional medicine treats them all the same way- by prescribing various medications that either have no effect or further irritate the system. Doctors are conducting the wrong tests and asking the wrong questions when it comes to your endocrine (hormonal) health. Too often, we treat the symptoms without understanding the underlying cause for a disorder, and often, the cause can be alleviated through diet and lifestyle change.

Thyroid symptoms can be extremely varied and difficult to diagnose. Common symptoms include extreme weight gain or loss, brittle hair, flaky skin, flimsy nails, feeling cold, regular joint pain, frequent headaches, IBS, difficulty sleeping, premature aging, unexpected mood swings, irritability, depression, trouble concentrating and high blood pressure. Needless to say, a thyroid condition can leave a huge impact on your life, affecting your relationships, family, goals, job performance and self-esteem. This can lead to feelings of depression, desperation, inadequacy, and uncertainty.

If you suffer from a thyroid disorder, you should know, you are not irrational! You are not inadequate! And you are not alone! Join us in The Beet for Dr. Wild’s Riveting discussion to learn more about the underlying cause of most autoimmune diseases, Cellular Inflammation and the detrimental effects this can have on our organs, brain, endocrine system, and the very cells that make up our body. Learn what you can do daily to reduce inflammation and how to reduce stress on your system by avoiding various toxins and irritants. Dr. Wild offers a “Seminar Special” for those interested in a substantial reduction in cost for initial tests that may change what you thought you understood about your own body! You might just find the answers you are looking for…


Dr. Michael Wild | GetN2Balance

Dr. Wild graduated with Cum Laude Honors from Boston College with a BA in Psychology (concentration in Psycho-Physiology), and received his Doctor of Chiropractic degree from New York Chiropractic College in 1991.

Dr. Wild is a board certified Chiropractic Physician licensed by the Medical Board of Virginia. He has been freeing people from pain and helping them live healthier more productive lives since 1991, and has focused on the needs of his neighbors in Richmond’s West End since 1993.

Dr. Wild uses a “whole person approach” when taking care of his patients. By combining the very best hands-on healing techniques, state-of-the-art diagnostic & treatment procedures, and providing the newest and best natural whole-food vitamins and mineral supplements on the market today, Dr. Wild is able to help you to accelerate your journey to good health. His mission is to help people realize that “health comes from within, and ultimately, maintaining your health is superior to the treatment of disease.”


FREE! We just ask that you RSVP here


Email The Beet Cafe Coordinator, Charlotte, at!

HalloWEEK at Ellwood’s!


Why limit the fall festivities to just one day? 

We’ve got something special planned each day leading up to Halloween, culminating with our annual costume contest for employees and the community alike!

Here’s the full line up of event, for the whole family alike, including your four-legged family members!

HalloWEEK Spooky Screenings | October 24th – October 31st

Every day in The Beet, starting at noon, we’re showing a different spooky classic, including Young Frankenstein, Hocus Pocus, It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!, The Nightmare Before Christmas, ET, Casper, Beetlejuice and more.  Here’s the full line-up, but you can also check the schedule on our calendar here so you plan your lunches accordingly…


Ellwood’s Halloween Fest | Saturday, October 29th | 11PM – 5PM

Face painting | Cider & beer tastings | Pet costume contest | Live music | Samples |  Crafts for all, including dead flower crowns & apple stamps | Jack-o-lanter Raffle | Richmond Outside pop-up tent | and more!

Halloween Costume Contest | Monday, October 31st | 7AM – 9PM

$100 Ellwood’s gift card to 1st place winners | Categories for ‘Best Steward Costume’ and ‘Best Customer Costume’ | Chosen by popular vote on Facebook November 1st through 4th

Is America An Oligarchy Instead of A Democracy? A Major Study Says The Answer Is (Unfortunately) “YES”

Ever since the United States Congress passed and President Obama signed the so-called “Dark Act” (S.B. 764) that essentially prevents any meaningful labeling for food products that contain Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs), I can’t help but think about that Princeton and Northwestern academic study on American Democracy published in September 2014.

Why? As I posted in a prior ET Food Advocate blog — How Legislation Is Opposed By 9 Out Of 10 Americans Becomes The Law In Our Country — regardless of where you stood on the issue of GMO labeling, it was amazing to see how a piece of legislation that is well documented in wide spread public opposition still becomes the law in the United States.

And since we are in an important and historic election season, it’s time to write about that Princeton and Northwestern Study.

The study, Testing Theories of American Politics: Elites, Interest Groups, and Average Citizens, reviewed extensive data from 1981 to 2002 and reviewed close to 1,800 U.S. Government policies during that time period. The study concluded that even if an overwhelming majority of average citizens support any particular issue, the average citizens influence on U.S. policy making is “near zero”.   The study concludes that “Economic Elites” and “Business Interest Groups” have enormous power to pass favorable legislation despite vast public opposition and even greater power to block legislation with vast public support.

To quote the Study:

When the preferences of economic elites and the stands of organized interest groups are controlled for, the preferences of the average American appear to have only a minuscule, near-zero, statistically non-significant impact upon public policy. (Emphasis Added)

The influence of money in politics and in lobbying is considered the source of the loss of representative democracy in our country. This is not a new allegation but has become increasingly troubling since the Supreme Court decisions in Citizens United and McCutcheon v. Federal Elections Commission which now permits unlimited secret money go into U.S. political and judicial campaigns.

Former President Jimmy Carter, when asked his opinion of the Citizens and the McCutcheon decisions stated:

It violates the essence of what made America a great country in its political system. Now it’s just an oligarchy with unlimited political bribery being the essence of getting the nominations for president or being elected president. And the same thing applies to governors, and U.S. Senators and congress members. So, now we’ve just seen a subversion of our political system as a payoff to major contributors, who want and expect, and sometimes get, favors for themselves after the election is over.

One of the nation’s largest “grassroots” anti-corruption campaign, Represent.Us has produced a short and compelling video that explains the Princeton/Northwestern Study in support of its goal to pass better anti-corruption laws around the United States:

There is some debate about the Princeton/Northwestern Study. John Cassidy notes in his The New Yorker magazine commentary, Is America An Oligarchy?, in a statistical sense, that the “explanatory power” of some of the equations is “weak”.

But as Cassidy observes:

There can be no doubt that economic élites have a disproportionate influence in Washington, or that their views and interests distort policy in ways that don’t necessarily benefit the majority: the politicians all know this, and we know it, too. The only debate is about how far this process has gone, and whether we should refer to it as oligarchy or as something else.

And as we vote in the coming weeks, the worst thing we can do, no matter how far the process has gone — is to give up on the process.

Never give up.


Vegetarian Protein Sources

I think the most inspirational way that I develop ideas for written content and blog posts are through the common questions that come up during one-on-one appointments during my health coaching sessions. A big area of customer and client support recently has been around questions regarding shifting their diets over to a more plant based / vegetarian nutrition plan which, although it may seem straightforward, certainly isn’t for a lot of folks. Sometimes when people want to make big shifts their diet, the amount of research (often conflicting!) can be a little overwhelming. I like to outline big changes with small steps, by laying out the basics first and fine tuning the details one step at a time. A really big part of a vegetarian diet centers around adequate protein intake, and trust me – there are LOTS of ways we can utilize plant based foods to get in enough protein. Variety is key when we want to get a good amount of any one particular food group, and a common pitfall for some vegetarians (and meat eaters, too), is to rely too heavily on just one or two sources of protein. My best piece of advice is to pick at least 5 sources of your favorite protein and perfect several recipes utilizing these base protein sources to you’re not always defaulting to just tofu or just garbanzo beans.

The amount of protein every person requires is very different and depends on your body weight, age and especially your level of energy and expenditure. If you’re working out 6-7 days a week or training for a marathon, you need a considerably higher intake of protein than someone else who has a desk job. Generally speaking, you need about 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight (or 0.36 grams per pound). So a 150 pound person will need to eat about 54 grams of protein per day with a normal energy expenditure. It’s important to know how much protein you need to aim for every day, and to make a concerted effort to meet this intake with a variety of protein sources.

Here are several vegetarian protein sources that I often recommend and the protein content per cup for reference:

Food Serving Protein in Grams
Tempeh 1 cup 31
Soybeans, cooked 1 cup 29
Seitan 3 ounces 21
Lentils, cooked 1 cup 18
Plain yogurt 1 cup 15-20
Black Beans, cooked 1 cup 15
Kidney Beans, cooked 1 cup 15
Chickpeas, cooked 1 cup 15
Pinto beans, cooked 1 cup 15
Lima beans, cooked 1 cup 15
Black eyed peas, cooked 1 cup 13
Tofu, firm 4 ounces 11
Quinoa, cooked 1 cup 8
Peas, cooked 1 cup 8
Peanut butter 2 tablespoons 8
Almonds 1/4 cup 8
Egg, cooked 1 whole egg 6
Bulgar, cooked 1 cup 6
Sunflower seeds 1/4 cup 6
Spinach, cooked 1 cup 5
Broccoli, cooked 1 cup 4


One of the biggest overall nutritional varieties of vegetarian proteins comes from BEANS and legumes (black beans, lentils, kidney beans, walnuts, almonds, pinto beans etc). Not only are they higher in protein than most other plant based proteins, but they also pack a considerable amount of other nutrients such as magnesium, calcium, folic acid, folate, manganese, iron, B-vitamins and of course, fiber. You can read more about beans and legumes from my previous post here.

If you’d like more thorough or personalized information about dietary shifts – schedule a free health coaching appointment with me at Ellwood Thompson’s by emailing and we’ll set up a time on a


Lindsay Kluge M.Sc, CNS, LDN |

Store Tours with Lynn Farmer, RDN



Tuesday, October 18th / 9:00  to 10:00AM


The Beet at Ellwood’s


Thank you for taking the interest and time to explore our newest services for our shoppers:  Store Tours.  When you first get here, feel free to have a seat in The Beet.  Once everyone is there, you will meet Lynn Farmer, RDN who’ll provide some handout materials.  After a brief outline of the tour and a little input-gathering from you on your needs, goals and interests, you’ll be off and running with Lynn on a thorough store tour, tailored to your needs!

Grab a basket and follow Lynn as she goes through all departments of the store, discussing each area as it relates to improving nutritional status and well-being.  Please feel free to ask questions whenever they come to mind!  Lynn feels it’s better to get the questions out and responded to than her just talking the whole time.

Afterwards, you’ll return to The Beet for a light snack and to finish up questions and comments.


Lynn Farmer, RDN

Lynn Farmer is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist providing “Welltrition” services in the Richmond Metropolitan area.  Her specialty areas are Sports, Cardiovascular, and Wellness Nutrition and Integrative Functional Medicine. Certified by the American College of Sports Medicine as an Exercise Physiologist, she can evaluate and prescribe exercise programs.  She approaches what she does in a holistic manner, and therefore provides various strategies and techniques to better manage stress.  All of her programs are tailored to her clients allowing for improved outcomes, and we are excited to now offer her services through store tours at Ellwood’s!


$25 per person

Store Tours with Dietian Lynn: select your day/time


Email The Beet Cafe Manager, Taylor at

Will Oil Pulling Save Your Teeth?


Oil pulling is a 3,000-year-old ancient Ayurvedic oral hygiene practice that involves swishing or holding oils from plants and other natural sources in the mouth for long periods of time (usually 15-25 minutes).  Dr. F Karach, a Ukrainian oncologist, helped introduce oil pulling to the mainstream population by announcing to his colleagues at a 1992 conference for oncologists and bacteriologists that he had cured his leukemia and arthritis by practicing oil pulling on a daily basis. Since then, believers tout many benefits including healthier gums, whiter teeth, and even reversing cavities.

I was turned on to oil pulling a few years ago when I had a cavity scare. I had always taken good care of my teeth and never gotten a cavity in my life and then all of a sudden my dentist told me that I have four cavities! I could already hear the shrilly sound of a drill playing in my head and immediately became determined to find a remedy that did not require getting fillings. A friend told me to try oil pulling. So I did my research, committed to a daily practice, and within a few months I was totally onboard the oil pulling train. I was not able to save all of my teeth but I did reverse two cavities onto the “keep an eye on it” list, and they have continued to improve ever since.

On top of that I noticed several other positive effects for me as well.

So what can oil pulling do for you? Here are some Potential Benefits:

1. Preventing Tooth Decay – (Sometimes also reversing tooth decay like in my case).

2. Removing  bad breath.

3. Whitens teeth (I noticed this).

4. Heals bleeding gums.

5. Improves skin and acne.

6. Strengthens teeth, gums, and jaw (I also noticed this).

7. Heals cracked lips.

So oil pulling sounds great in theory, but is it all it’s cracked up to be?

Here are a few significant scientific studies that prove it is:

One study found that oil pulling significantly reduces plaque-induced gingivitis.

This study  found that oil pulling was equally as effective at reducing bad bacteria in your mouth as Chlorohexidine (prescription-strength germicidal mouthwash).

Here is a list of known studies that have been done on oil pulling and their results.  In addition, there are many positive testimonials to this relatively simple task on oral health.

Trending oral health practice of Oil Pulling or Swishing
Trending oral health practice of Oil Pulling or Swishing


1. Use coconut, sesame, and/or sunflower oil (I prefer to trade off between coconut and sesame oil each day)

2. Scoop approximately one tablespoon in your mouth and swish for 15-25 minutes first thing in the morning (I also swash with water and sea salt beforehand to kill bacteria that might have grown in the mouth overnight)

3. Swish gently and slowly, otherwise you will hurt your jaw

4. DO NOT SWALLOW OR GARGLE THE OIL (As bacteria will steadily be incorporated into the oil). (This is an important tip) !

5. Spit your oil out in the trash or outside in the grass, NOT the sink, else you might clog your drain.

6. Rinse your mouth with water (Add sea salt for a greater cleanse.)

7. Brush your teeth as normal.

Tips: – It is commonly recommended to pull first thing in the morning before you drink or eat anything else .  – If you use coconut oil and it has hardened, it may take 20 seconds or so for the oil to melt into liquid form in your mouth… this is normal – Do not oil pull when you will need to communicate with anyone because you won’t be able to talk with oil in your mouth! – Add it to your morning routing and oil pull while you shower to save time – Add a teaspoon of baking soda to the water you rinse with afterwards to create a greater alkaline environment in your mouth – If you want to kick the effects up a notch, do it a second time just before you go to sleep at night – You can also add a drop of essential oil for additional beneficial effects and flavor such as peppermint, clove, frankincense, or tea tree oil)

How long do you need to do this until you will see results?

I personally felt a much cleaner, healthier mouth after the first few times I tried oil pulling. It took several months of disciplined pulling every day to reverse my tooth decay. – Try it every morning for a few weeks and then if you desire, you may cut back to a few times a week. – If you want to do some serious healing or detox work then go for twice a day until you notice a significant change in your oral health. Despite all of these wonderful benefits, it is not recommended to use oil pulling to replace your other oral care habits! Simply add it on to whatever your current regimen is. But don’t take my word for it. Go try it yourself!


Blanchard’s Coffee Slow Bar



A collaboration with Blanchard’s Coffee Roasting Co. and their pretty rad team of roasters, brewers, movers and shakers.

You may already love their coffee from our Green & Grind (we use their beans exclusively) or from the shelves in our Bulk department, where you can grab a bag of your favorite roast for home.  Now, we’re offering another way to enjoy their craft coffee & learn about their rad-ness first hand, with pour overs at the bar in The Beet, every Friday starting September 9th!


Starting Friday, September 9th, from 8am to 10am


The bar in The Beet at Ellwood Thompson’s


Slow down with a hand pour of Blanchard‘s Coffee Roasting Co.’s signature single origin coffees.  Pour overs highlight the fine qualities of the coffee been, allowing you to taste the flavor profiles in an amplified way.  Blanchard’s will feature their newest coffees and share with you the story behind the bean, including the farmers and communities they support through their sourcing.
$3.99 per pour over.

Want to let us know you’re coming?

Not that you have to, but if you want to, let us know your coming. (Thanks, Facebook events!)


Email Taylor at

INTRODUCING // Ellwood’s Own Local Wines


Ellwood’s White, 2015


Our Ellwood’s White is an unfiltered, light, crisp wine. It is on the dry side with floral and citrus notes and lightly spiced undertones. This wine was selected for its balance between approachability and depth and complexity of flavor.

Ellwood’s Red, 2014


Our Ellwood’s Red is custom blended to showcase the aromatic intensity, depth of flavor, and elegant tannic structure of the Cabernet Franc and Merlot, while including a touch of lighter grapes to soften it and make approachable on its own. The dark fruit, tobacco spice and silky tannins make this wine enjoyable with or without food.