Blissful Boxes for Your Bod from Katie Ulrich
Ever walk into the kitchen and think, “Gee, if I had something healthy and yummy to eat, I’d be thrilled. But since I don’t, and I’m feeling a teensy overworked, tired and perhaps a touch lazy, maybe I’ll just eat this pre-packaged meal that’s less than nutritionally sound and possibly filled with all sorts of unhealthy ingredients?”
Sound familiar? Unfortunately, this can happen to even the most health conscious Warrior Goddess when time and/or budgets get tight. NYC-based yoga teacher, chef and soon-to-be health coach Katie Ulrich heard stories like this so often that she had to help. Now, the smiley, high-energy former dancer offers her clients healthy, tasty pre-cooked meals. Below, SBS finds out more about this wellness enthusiast.
Organic Path: Ulrich grew up on the sunny Cali coast in Huntington Beach and was raised to enjoy and savor fresh foods and family dinners. At the University of Colorado, Boulder, she lost her veritable way for a while, though, making unhealthy eating choices. When she became tired of the bad cycle, she took a yoga class on a whim—and it transformed her life as she became a yoga teacher, even leading to healthier food decisions.
Soon, she moved to New York City to pursue performance. She was successful, but after touring with a production The Little Mermaid, she found her passion for teaching yoga had surpassed that of the stage. She started teaching privates (as she still does), focusing on an approach that helps clients feel good inside and out, tailoring the sessions to fit each person individually, from a stretch-tastic hour to a cardio-heavy vinyasa.
Like most good things in her life, Ulrich’s meal delivery business developed organically. “Initially, a friend asked me to cook for a party at his place, and a woman approached me, explaining how much she loved the healthy food and how it was so tasty! She asked me to make meals for her, and since that was something I had always wanted to do in the back of my mind, I jumped at it,” explains Ulrich. “It’s growing so quickly, and eventually I’ll need a commercial kitchen. For now, KatieUlrich.com is blooming!”
Within her business, Ulrich is offering flexible options including plans that cover three, five or seven days. Smoothie and soup options (which she’s affectionately termed SMOOUP) are also available. Meals can be tailored to any need, from gluten-free and allergies to weight-loss and energy gain.
Regardless of the specifics, Ulrich’s main aim is to make clients comfortable with eating whole, filling foods, and eventually, preparing them in their own kitchen. “Once you experience my meals, I’m hoping you can look at food and say this is good, I’m going to feel good eating it. Also, I want clients to understand being gentle and caring to themselves surrounding food,” she says. “Say you’re craving French fries. Instead of beating yourself up about it, eat the French fries! Enjoy! Tomorrow is a new day, move on and go back to your healthy choices. Restricting is the worst thing to do for yourself: You don’t want to play mind games. Once we’ve worked together, you have a toolbox of healthy habits to help you. There is a lack of connection to our food, and most people are even ignorant of ailments caused by poor food choices. Your body doesn’t lie: Recognizing you don’t feel well is the first step to healing. Tune in and listen to your body. ”
Keep It Simple:
Within her meals, Ulrich focuses on helping her clients experience the nourishing facet of simplicity—and they can use this with other food, too. “You’re never going to feel fully nourished if you overcomplicate. So I design meals that are well balanced and full of superfoods for bursting energy. Then, I write out why I’m using those specific ingredients. For example, parsley purifies your blood. Cashews naturally produce serotonin, so that’s great for the middle of your day. Then, you have that knowledge forever.
Care for a Cleanse?
When clients reach a point where they need to hit the reset button, Ulrich is offering a cleanse of three, five or seven days, with an underpinning of a homemade broth to heal the gut. But, she makes it clear longer cleanses are unnecessary and likely unhealthy. “It’s simply a way to restart your system, get the good bacteria back in your body, flush out the toxins and, most importantly, get started on clean eating program,” she says.
When Ulrich wound through her own bad eating habits in college and rose out the other side, she not only noticed a change in her body, but in her inner workings, too. That was the important shift for her. “I’ve always been a huge foodie, but in college, I was indulging all the time,’ she says. “During that time, I started reading a ton, but that proved confusing due to the mountain of information and contradictory data. But then I simply started focusing on, how can I heal? How can I treat my body properly? I realized, if I eat better, I feel better. So now, to continue learning and growing, I’m training to become a holistic health coach at the Academy of Healing Nutrition.”
Her Healthy Habits:
-Stock your fridge on your downtime so you don’t call for take-out when you’re crunched for time!
-Technology Rocks! Use apps that will shop for you and that make delivery easy.
-Before you go out to eat, do your research. Look into their standards in terms of farm-fresh produce, organic items, etc. If you call ahead, you can avoid complaining or making anything uncomfortable when you’re there.
-Cook with cold-pressed olive oil, coconut oil, pumpkin seed oil or avocado oil for healthy fats.
My favorite SBS mantra is Be Bright. It’s a great reminder to live your life in color. Why not choose the brightest one, so you shine from the inside out at all times?!
Katie’s Healing Detox Breakfast Smooth:
Blend and enjoy…
-1/2 cup aloe vera juice
-3 tbsp raw apple cider vinegar
-splash of filtered water
-6 Lacinato kale leaves
-2 stalks of celery
-handful of fresh parsley
-4 raw cashews
-dash of honey for sweetness if it’s too tar
East Coconut Curry:
-Use your favorite vegetables, or add chickpeas and lentils to this blend for extra protein
-1/2 sweet onion
-1 sweet potato
-1/2 cup broccoli
-1/2 red bell pepper
-2 garlic cloves
-2 inch piece of fresh grated ginger
-1 can organic coconut milk
-3 tbsp organic coconut oil
-Spice blend: Himalayan sea salt, peppercorn, turmeric, curry powder, cayenne, cardamom and cinnamon. Chop all veggies into small pieces and mince the garlic. Sauté the onion and sweet potato on medium heat for five minutes in coconut oil. Then add the other vegetables and garlic. Spice to your liking. (I prefer four to five dashes of turmeric and curry powder and three to four dashes of cayenne, two dashes of cinnamon and cardamom, and season with salt and pepper.) Add in the coconut milk after another five minutes of cooking the veggies. Turn the heat down to low, stir and grate fresh ginger on top. Cover, let simmer for eight to 10 minutes, top with fresh cilantro and enjoy!