By in Ketogenic, Lifestyle Nutrition Coach, Paleo, Restaurant, Transformational Nutrition


I haven’t been around for a while, I’m crushed if you haven’t missed me.  I’m also making a few changes, NOT retractions, to my format.  I want you to feel a more softer approach to “eating” a healthy lifestyle.  This means I will be taking a “whole food” approach to critiquing restaurants which is totally what I was doing(in my mind) to begin with, but it seems people are getting a little annoyed with the dogma that goes along with being Paleo. So! I am now a Lifestyle Nutrition Coach… Lets dig in!

Weather you are following the 21 Day Sugar Detox, the whole 30, Paleo, gluten free or Mediterranean diets, I want you to look at your menu for your #1. meat, #2. vegetable and #3. healthy fat options.  These selections might not be on the menu in one entree, but several small meals or a by making a substitution, and this can all be done without making a spectacle of yourself.  Always check out the menu before hand so you have an idea of your options and even call ahead to see if they have charges for substitution or vegetables that you like.  Healthy fat options come in the form of EVOO, Nuts, Avocado, Grass fed Butter, Coconut oil…that’s about it!

In the Beginning…The bread will cometh…NO Thank you!

The Salads are lovely but please ask questions as I found some foods not identified on the menu in the salads. If nothing else, I just hate to waste food or pick through it when if I had of known, it could easily have been left off.  The Farmers Crop-pile was great!  A mix of raw and cooked veggies BUT it did have corn in it and it came with Parmesan, whaaa… commence the picking.  The Harvest Lox Salad, again great, super clean, but the cheese was mixed in to the Salmon so it couldn’t be picked off.  If you do include dairy and sugar in your diet, You cant go wrong with the Cheese Block & Raw Honey.  I really only mention this because the Zelko’s started the Heights Honey Project and they naturally maintain around 100 hives, none near the restaurant!  They sell and infuse that natural sweetness throughout the menu, that’s pretty cool.  Learn more about the importance of Bee’s and their contribution to sustainable plant and crop growth in the ares they buzz around in.

honey bees

I’m going to say “No” to the sandwiches.  Now, if you are allowing yourself bread then I imagine any of these sandwiches would be a fabulous treat…enjoy the bloated belly the next day:)

Moving right along..Main course!


Ok, I can’t save the best for last!  The ZB Meatloaf is bananas!  Just substitute the Yukon potatoes for a double serving of vegetable and you are set.  The Corned Beef & Cabbage Sprouts were a little less eventful, it was quit bland, but truly one of the cleanest meals on the menu and for that I was very satisfied.  Again, sans the potatoes and enjoy a double heaping of vegetables.  The Fish Tacos are super delish, but be-warned if you think you can just eat the insides and not the tortilla with all that yummy dressing soaked into it, you will be wrong!  My table mate fell victim…claims it was worth all the shame:) Also, the sweet plantains are very greasy, so opt for veggies to substitute.  The Charred Ribeye Block is the most gorgeous thing on the menu, again ask for double the veg and skip the bread.  In addition, be careful when you see soy, sweet soy, agave nectar, polenta, 3 grain salad, and simple grains.  Soy is not something I want in my body no matter how sexy it sounds, and the rest just equate to consuming to much sugar and carbohydrate, which = bloated face and belly the next day.

We had one of the best Pinot Grigio Doppio Cieco.  I always have club soda or San Pellegrino to curb the reaching for the wine.  With that said, easy on the fluids when you are eating, you don’t want to dilute your digestive enzymes.  Wait at least 30 minutes before consuming water after a meal.  There are so many reason that we don’t absorb all the nutrients from the foods we eat so play it safe when consuming fluids around meal times.  Also, chewing slowly aids in digestion in a really big way, as digestive enzymes are in your saliva!



Paleo Stay-Cay Downtown Houston

By in Ketogenic, Paleo, Restaurant, Transformational Nutrition

mr.peeples batanga Hearsay bar at 218 Travis.

So, I’m coming of the high of a motivational Oprah Winfrey kick in the pants “live your best life” weekend.  And of course living my best life means pulling off Paleo in some of Houston’s best restaurants, before anyone even notices my slight of hand.  I’m going to cover 3 restaurants and hit the highlights.  Hearsay Gastro Lounge, Batanga Tapas+Drinks and Mr Peeples Steak and Seafood.   Also, With a shout out to The Honeymoon Bar, they prepared a perfect charcuterie plate and replaced crostinis with veggies…perfect mid day pick me up along with my prosecco!


The HoneyMoon Bar.  Colorful Cauliflower in place of Crostinis!


Unfortunately, I don’t have many pictures because these were not planned reviews and truth be told my storage was full.

Batanga Tapas bar  Staff was great and very willing to make substitutions, in fact one of our brunch mates had a broken jaw and they went to the trouble of  tossing his meal in the Vita Mix…Yum!  Between all of us, we had Ropa Viega (meat, sweet Potato, poached egg and salsa…Blended!) Zucchini Tortilla, leave off the Cream Fraiche.  Chicken Skewers Cubano, very good.  Grilled Avocado…you must order like 4 of these, they are that good and leave off the cheese.  Albondigas (braised meatballs and tomato sauce).  Eggs Benedict (house cured lomo, eggs, hollandaise…no bread!)  The vibe is great in this restaurant and has live music!

Hearsay Gastro lounge  I had The Byrd Burger, sans the bun and Mac n Cheese and replaced with veggies,  no up-charge, always a plus!..Amazing burger!!  When I asked for a “lettuce” bun, they said “oh…Paleoize it?”… Loved it!  Vegetables come any way you like them. Everyone ordered The Byrd, Soooo…Thats all I have to say about the food here, however, service was very nice, AND they just opened a HEARSAY ON THE GREEN, so now you have more options when coming out of Toyota Center.


The Byrd, sans the Sweet Bun and Mac & Cheese!

Mr Peeples  The Tuna Nicoise salad is always a no brainer..and exceptional!  I ordered a large serving of brussels sprouts on the side that were probably the best I’ve ever had.  Both Dinner mates got the Chilean Sea Bass, which was well worth blowing off the miso /no soy rule..again, probably the best I’ve ever eaten!  Say No to fried rice, and of course load up on the veggies.  If you are just ordering meat and veggies always have a HFO, like Avocado or EVOO, or even Butter if you can tolerate it, and if the veggies are cooked in oil, great!..bacon?…perfect!  The menu is fabulous and you should have no problem following your diet to a T.  Don’t be afraid to ask questions… How is Bearnaise sauce made?  What is the Oscar topping on steak or fish?  How is Hollandaise Sauce made?  All 3 of these have a lot of butter involved… and thats ok especially if you are following a Primal or Ketogenic diet AND, if you can tolerate the butter, which btw, doesn’t have a lot of the reactive properties in it that turns our guts up-side-down, like Lactose and Casein.  A Ketogenic Diet means high fat and very low carbohydrate and moderate protein.  Primal is Paleo that includes dairy.

I hope you found this helpful and keep eating exciting food!


Ruggles Black, Pale-OMG!

By in Ketogenic, Paleo, Restaurant, Transformational Nutrition

ruggles black

Now, when I educate my clients on how to follow a Paleo diet to a T, it’s basically the same template over and over.  When you look at your plate, you want to see (1) Meat, (2) Vegetables, and (3) a Healthy Fat option(HFO). Thats it…Period.  Lets dig in!

The collaboration of Chef Molzan and Neera Patidar is absolute Paleo perfection.  The creative, delicious and anti-inflammatory meals are  wonderful.  Lets be honest, when you follow a Paleo diet, some, not moi, can put them selves in to a prison of Free Range Chicken breast and Organic Steamed Broccoli with A splash of olive oil.  Fearing Grains, Dairy, and flavor.

Eating out should be filled with excitement and passion and flavor.  You Get all of that Ruggles Black!

The Highlights.  STREET EATS:  I thought my days of picking up a taco or eating enchiladas were over.

Paleo Beef Short Rib Taco, Seared Tuna Taco, Snapper Taco, Veggie Taco and Paleo Tandoori Lamb Taco are completely divine, and here’s why you can enjoy them without the guilt or bloating.  The tortilla is made with Almond flour and Coconut milk and made very thin and crepey, so even though the fat content is there you don’t come away feeling heavy and stuffed as you do when eating flour and corn tortillas.  Also, (big Also) Tandoori is typically a marinade made with yogurt, so if you are dairy sensitive Tandoori is not for you.  This creative duo uses Green Papaya to tenderize and infuse the spices into the meat, instead of wont miss it!  The Crab Tower and the Paleo Angry Shrimp are must haves to start with   OR add a side of veggies to any of the above in bold and you will be completely satisfied.


Crab Tower.  The Avocado and EVOO are your HFO



Add Side Veggies to above or below for complete meal. Skip green beans and ask for heavy cauliflower mash or broccoli.



Paleo Snapper Taco

Salads:  The two main things that I want to touch on is Soy and Dairy.  There is Miso in several forms throughout the menu and especially in the Salad dressings.  Paleo does not include beans… Soy is a bean and has been called a very inflammatory bean.  Miso is made from Soy…stay away from it!  I choose not to go there at all, but if I were to dine on some cheese it would be Goat Cheese, and goat cheese is all throughout the menu, especially on the salads.  Goats milk is low in Casein(which is one of the proteins in milk that is highly inflammatory to some), has less lactose, and fewer digestive issues.  Structurally and nutritionally it is similar to breast milk.  But if you want to stay true to your guns,  just say no to cheese.

Main course:  For the most part every thing is good to go.  Just look for foods like Rice Noodles, Red Quinoa, Red Quinoa Tabouli and Granola, and trade out for vegetables!  I say this more from a high carb load which is mixed with already rich restaurant foods.  You will feel bloated and it will take days for your body to de-bloat and stop craving more nutritional inferior carbohydrates.


Paleo Chicken Enchiladas. Skip the Goat Cheese, you wont miss it!

The menu is very creative and there are so many things I want to try on the menu.  The next day I felt great, even though I know I overdid it, I had no bloating!

See you Next Week!


Paleo Review | Punks Simple Southern Food

By in Paleo, Restaurant, Transformational Nutrition

punks logo

This past weekend I decided to stop by Punks because, well, the patio was just filled with good looking people.  Now, when I educate my clients on how to follow Paleo to the T, it’s basically using the same template over and over.  When you look at your plate, you want to see Meat, Vegetable and a healthy Fat source…Thats it, period.

So here is what I like at Punks… And you will be happy to know you can pull off Paleo!

  • I loved hearing that the fish is Wild Caught, off the Louisiana/Houston Coast.  The meats are locally sourced and all natural.  You eat what you are…Happy and Healthy.
  • No bread comes to the table!
  • I loved the Pickled Gulf Shrimp with jalapeño, fennel and cauliflower.  You can get this as an appetizer or main meal, just add extra veggies. Pictured.


  • The Deviled Eggs were great, but to few and very expensive.
  • The Meat loaf was good and served clean.  It is pretty filling and big enough for a man, so ladies, eat until you’re full but  shoot for just half.  AND switch out the sides for Collard Greens, it’s really the only side dish option.  I  suggest these will accompany all of the recommended entrees.  Your fat will be here, also, since the Collards are cooked with Ham Hocks…YUM!
  • Heirloom Tomato Salad is another good appetizer or side dish.  Again, your fat is here in the form of vinaigrette.
  • Back Yard Pork Chops(NO Johnny Cakes), Red Fish(replace the side) and Ice Cold Oysters,  are all Civilized options.


On an end note, I took one for my team.  I tried the the Buttermilk Fried Chicken, the Johnny Cakes, the Biscuits and the Punks Sauce and, Meh…You’re not missing much.

The Kids Meal is pretty cool.  It comes on a Bento like tray with veggies and fruit all compartmentalized, super cute!!

Only compliant is that there aren’t more vegetable options…Beans and Corn, NO!

photo courtesy of Punks

5212 Morningside
Houston, TX 77005


Eleven XI Gets 12 Stars for Paleo Made Easy

By in Ketogenic, Paleo, Restaurant, Transformational Nutrition




What I want you to remember is that when ever you eat out, you are looking on the menu for  #1. your meat options, #2. vegetable options and #3. healthy fat options(hfo).  It might not be a single entree, but a collection of small plates.  Lets dig in!

First of all, it’s been a week since this meal and I CAN NOT stop thinking about how amazing the food was and how easy Chef  Kevin made it to stay true to ALL dietary convictions.

Starting with the appetizers:

Beef Tartare with two fried quail eggs was exceptional.  It comes with fries and toast points…that would be a No!  But if you want to make a meal out of it, substitute vegetable and EVOO to drizzle.


Halibut Cheek Heirloom tomato pico was absolute heaven.  It was a nice size  portion for sharing.  It was lightly breaded, so if going gluten free, beware, because it doesn’t say on the menu…So Always Ask!



Grilled Oysters, Akaushi(Japanese Wagu beef) Meat Balls, Steamed Mussels and XI RAW are all fine choice’s and I’m sure delicious.

On the Light Side, the 11:11 Salad is fine, No Goat cheese.  Seafood Salad is fine, No Bread.  Steak Pailllard Salad is fine, No Yukon Potato’s or Gorgonzola Cheese dressing.  Opt for a cleaner vinaigrette.  No! to the Smoked Tomato soup, it has diary.  And, if you care enough to give the very best.. NO Pozole,  it has corn.

Ok, now for the moment I’ve been waiting for, the Main Dish!

I had the Texas “turducken”, and oh my god, it has ruined me for all other state turduckens!  Braised pork shank stuffed with Jalapeño, wrapped in bacon and stuffed inside a deboned Texas Quail..I’m weak.  Now, it is  “Flash fried” which means that Texas bird was only in the oil for a New York minute.  I deleted the heirloom tomato cream corn (double whammy) and substituted a side of grilled veggies.  Perfection!


My oh so willing “Primal”(includes dairy in his diet) companion had the Stuffed Redfish Filet..Fabulous!   Just be aware there is cream in the stuffing mix!

IMG_1497Most of the rest of the main dishes are good to go, it’s usually the side dish that is the bad guy.  Filet Mignon is great but  you can make a better choice than the green beans and mushroom salad, especially if getting full and staying full with out the discomfort is your goal.  Grilled asparagus, grilled Vegetables are great and filling.  Also, what I love is all the great add ons for some additional bucks, Duck eggs, bacon, shrimp, crab meat, the list goes on.

Being a chef driven, seasonally and locally sourced menu, 11:11 will be changing its menu as it officially becomes Fall.  On the chance that Turducken doesn’t make the cut, you better run, don’t walk!! your Paleo foodie butts to 11:11 ASAP.

On an end note, our super knowledgable waiter josh assured us that you are never “locked into” a meal as is and that the chef has been known to create dishes on the fly, to accommodate special needs diets.

There is a restaurant or two that touts they are Paleo, when all they are doing is “Paleoizing” junk and creating boring “healthy” dishes.  Chef Kevin doesn’t talk about it, he IS about it.   His fresh and creative meals are amazing!

713-529-5881   607 W.Gray