Eggnog?? YES!


No need to skip this yummy holiday tradition!

Try this IP Phase 1-4 friendly recipe for delicious, satisfying Egg Nog!

  • 1 Ideal Protein Vanilla Pudding Mix
  • Da Vinci’s Sugar Free Eggnog Syrup
  • 2 Splenda packets
  • 4 eggs, divided
  • 1 oz milk
  • 1 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon (optional)
  • 7 oz water
  1. In a bowl, beat the egg yolks until they lighten in color.
  2. Gradually add Splenda packets and continue to beat until dissolved. Set aside.
  3. Mix the Ideal Protein Vanilla Pudding Mix with water and milk.
  4. In a medium saucepan, over high heat, combine the prepared pudding mix with the nutmeg and cinnamon (optional), and bring to a boil. Stirring occasionally.
  5. Remove from the heat and gradually temper the hot mixture into the egg and Splenda mixture.
  6. Once mixed, return everything to the pot and cook until the mixture reaches 160 degrees F.
  7. Pour into a medium mixing bowl, and set in the refrigerator to chill.
  8. In a separate medium mixing bowl, beat the egg whites to soft peaks.
  9. With the mixer running gradually, add the Da Vinci’s Sugar Free Eggnog Syrup.
  10. Whisk the egg whites into the chilled mixture. Serve and enjoy!




Motivation. Where does it come from and how can I get it?

Motivation. The dictionary defines it as “the general desire or willingness of someone to do something”.  The internet is chock full of quotes on the subject to get you started and keep you going, whatever your goal:

“Failure is not falling down, but refusing to get up” -Chinese proverb

“When you feel like quitting, thing about why you started” -Unknown

But what is motivation and where does it come from?  There are two kinds of motivation: extrinsic and intrinsic.  Extrinsic motivation comes from an outside source, such as a doctor or a spouse or a friend.  Intrinsic motivation is inspiration that comes from within.

In my roles as an Ideal Protein coach and a personal trainer, I am spending my days motivating others and giving them that extrinsic motivation that is often essential to get them started on a healthier path.  Everyone needs a little nudge. Or, at times, a big nudge.

But a nudge is just a start.  Think about teaching a kid to ride a bike.  You can give him that first big push, but if he doesn’t find it within himself to peddle, he’s going to fall. And yell for you to do it again.

We don’t want to have to yell at someone every time we need a nudge.

Where do we find that intrinsic motivation to keep peddling?

  • Set short-term goals.  Take it week-by-week or day-by-day, then celebrate your small successes along the way.
  • Write positive comments to yourself in a journal.  It’s a good way to unwind and reflect on the day. Review it when you find yourself slipping into negative thoughts.
  • Get in touch with what matters most to you.  Your health?  Your family? Let it drive you.
  • Give yourself credit for the progress that you’ve made! You get ALL of the credit!
  • WRITE YOUR OWN MOTIVATIONAL QUOTE!! (Be sure to post it in the comments! Thanks!)

Best of luck!

Greetings from the newest IP coach at Banic!

Hello!! My name is Debbie, and I’m very excited to join the staff at Banic Chiropractic Clinic as an Ideal Protein Coach!

A little about me… I grew up in a sleepy-little-town-turned-bustling-metropolis called Edwardsville, Illinois. It was there that I learned how to bait a hook, get really muddy, play tennis, and drive a little too fast. I graduated from Eastern Illinois University in “19-something-something” with a business degree and four years of unforgettable memories. From there, the road took me straight to Chicago, where I found my first, second and third jobs, a Master’s degree from DePaul University, and lots and lots of REALLY good food.  In 2000, life brought me to Seattle. Now this is home.

After an unfulfilling career in business and a highly fulfilling career as a mom, I followed my heart and passion to fitness and health.  In addition to my role as a coach with Ideal Protein, I’m a certified Personal Trainer and a Group Fitness Instructor. I love being able to teach people how to make positive changes in their lives.

My favorite things to do when I have free time include working in my yard, getting hooked on the latest Netflix series, hiking, paddleboarding (love, love, love!), and spending as much time as possible with my three amazing kids, Luke, Max and Maggie.

A lot of people ask me what I eat or what I do to stay healthy and fit. I also hear things like “you must not need to worry about it since you’re so active”. And what I tell people is this: I’m human. Very human. I try to be mindful of what I eat and get enough exercise and sleep, but the truth is I have my slip-ups. I get tired and stressed. I have my days when all I want is chocolate, and lots of it. And while I am active, and that helps, it’s not a license to lose control of my diet every single day.  So I do what everyone else who is trying to stay on a healthy path does: I put one foot in front of the other and keep going.  I don’t look back and dwell on the slip-up. I wake up the next day, forgive myself, and start fresh.  (And maybe do a few extra pushups.)

Thanks for reading!  I look forward to meeting you!


Italian Wedding Soup

2 packages IP rotini pasta

4 cups raw chopped spinach

16 oz. Jennie o Sweet Italian Turkey

Dried parsley, basil, salt, pepper, and garlic

32 oz chicken broth

1 ½ cups water

Roll turkey sausage into small meatballs and cook in nonstick skillet, until cooked through and browned.  Bring broth and water to a boil. Add spinach, spices, cooked meatballs and 2 IP packs of rotini. Simmer for 8 minutes.

Serves 4

Diet Plateau Solutions

Is your weight loss slowing down or coming to a halt?  Here are a few things you can try:

1. Be detailed in your food journal.  Don’t leave anything out, especially any added sauces, dressings, marinades, and beverages.  By paying attention and recording everything you eat, you may find that a few little things have slipped back in to your diet.

2. Eliminate all restricted foods for a week or two.  It’s possible that you have slipped out of ketosis, and need to restrict carbs even more for a short time.  Having a restricted food item every day can still be too much for some dieters.

3. Have a beginners attitude.  Give it your all.  As time passes on a diet, it’s possible to get a little lazy, or to allow yourself a little cheating.  Being strict with yourself, and renewing your commitment will help you reach your goals more quickly.

4.  It could be time for a detoxifying cleanse.  Fat cells hold onto toxins and other compounds.  As fat is burned, those toxins are released into your system, then filtered by your liver and kidneys.  Your liver is essential for the weight loss process.  A cleanse can help support liver and kidney function and improve bowel function, often helping dieters bust through a plateau.

5. Start moving.  You don’t have to exercise for the Ideal Protein diet to work, but some movement can certainly help.  Walking, hiking, biking, playing an active game of tag–anything that you enjoy can be helpful.

Work with your coach to find the options that work the best for you.

Egg White Salad with Salmon, Capers & Dill

Egg White Salad with Salmon, Capers & Dill

phase 1-4, serves 4

Adapted from Pamela Anderson

12 egg whites
12 oz. cold cooked salmon, cut into small dice
2 tbs extra-virgin olive oil
4 tbs Walden Farms Balsamic vinaigrette dressing
1/2 small red onion, cut into small dice (about 2/3 cup)
1/3 cup capers, drained
2 Tbs. minced fresh dill
1 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
1 tsp. finely grated lemon zest
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Put the egg whites in a glass bowl and microwave until completely cooked, 6-7 minutes depending on your microwave (check often). Turn bowl over and place cooked egg whites on cutting board. Allow to cool, and finely chop and return to glass bowl. Add the salmon, oil, onion, capers, dill, dressing and lemon juice and zest. Season with sea salt and pepper to taste. Toss gently but well and serve.

*Can be served on thick slices of cucumber if you like.

What is Collagen?

Collagen is a type of protein found in the bones, skin and connective tissue of animals such as cattle, fish, horses, pigs and rabbits.  It gives connective tissue its mobility and skin its elasticity.  Collagen is rich in the amino acids. Lysine, Glycine and Proline. 

Why is collagen important?  As we age, we lose some of our skin’s elasticity, and our connective tissues can harden and stiffen, as collagen breaks down.  Having a rich dietary source, that is highly absorbable can improve the texture and elasticity of skin, and can promote healthier connective tissues throughout your body.  When we lose weight, it is especially important to give your skin the nutrients it needs to bounce back and hug your body, rather than sag.

What IP products contain collagen?  The Raspberry Jelly and The Blueberry Pomegranate drink are the two products rich in collagen. By including these products in your meal plan, you can ensure that you will get the collagen you need.  You can have these products every day, or even every other day.

After losing your weight in phase 1, it may take an additional 6 months for your skin to catch up to your new shape.  Continuing to include the foods with high collagen content can help this process.

Cauliflower Rice Recipe



1 Tbsp olive oil

Seasonings of choice, such as garlic, onion powder, cilantro or cumin.  Be creative!


Grab a regular cheese grater and grate the raw cauliflower into small, rice-sized pieces. While you’re doing that, heat up a non-stick skillet with a little olive oil. Add the cauliflower and heat until slightly browned. Viola! Easy, easy, easy!

Chicken and Mushroom Stew

Chicken and Mushroom Stew

phase 1-4, serves 4

Adapted from Serious Eats

1 tablespoon olive oil

4 grilled chicken breasts, cubed

1 cup celery, minced

3 tablespoons garlic, minced

3 cups oyster mushrooms, quartered

2 cups assorted wild mushrooms (whatever’s interesting at the market), cut into 1/2-inch pieces

1/2 cup vinegar

1 cup dried porcini mushrooms

1 quart low fat chicken stock or vegetable stock

2 Pinches chopped fresh sage

1 cup loosely packed fresh kale, chopped

1/2 cup enoki mushrooms, separated

Sea salt and cracked black pepper

In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat for 2 minutes. Add the garlic, and celery. Sauté the mixture for 5 minutes or until the ingredients are nearly caramelized.

Add the oyster and wild mushrooms, and then continue to sauté the mixture for an additional 5 minutes, or until the vegetables are nearly browned. Immediately deglaze the pan with the vinegar, and then bring to a boil for 30 seconds.

Add the dried mushrooms, kale, chicken and the chicken or vegetable stock. Bring to a boil, decrease the heat to low, and simmer until the soup reaches the desired consistency. Swirl in the sage, and enokis, and then remove from the heat. Season it with the sea salt and pepper and sprinkle top with more sage.


Fennel and Tomato Pork Stew

From Ideal Everyday, Vol. 3


2 lb. boneless pork shoulder or loin roast

Salt and pepper to taste

2 tbsp olive oil

1 leek, chopped

2 stalks celery, chopped

4 cloves garlic, minced

2 tsp fennel seeds, crushed

½ cup light chicken broth

2 cups canned tomatoes, strained

1 tsp. dried thyme

1 tbsp. all purpose flour

¼ cup chopped fresh parsley



Trim pork and cut into 1 inch cubes; sprinkle with salt and pepper.  In a large, shallow Dutch oven, heat half of the olive oil over medium-high heat; brown pork, in batches.  Transfer to slow cooker.  Drain any fat from the pan; add remaining olive oil.  Cook leek, celery, garlic, and fennel seeds over medium heat until softened and lightly golden, about 8 minutes.  Add broth, scraping up brown bits from the pan.  Season with salt and pepper.  Pour into slow cooker.  Add tomatoes and thyme.  Cover and cook on low for 6-7 hours or until pork is tender.  In a small bowl, whisk flour with 2 tbsp water; whisk into slow cooker.  Cover and cook on high for 15 minutes or until thickened.  Stir in parsley.


Serves 4