Archive for the ‘New York City’ Category

How One School Changed My Life

In education, holistic health, lifestyle, New York City, nutrition, Uncategorized, wellness on July 13, 2012 at 6:34 pm

I was in the business world for several years (public relations executive) but, for many of them, I was the “go to” person in the office for advice on wellness and nutrition.  I always, mistakenly, thought that if something was a passion it was, well, a passion and a hobby.

Was I ever wrong!

In 2009, I enrolled at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition.  It’s headquartered in New York City, but students come from all over the world; I remember in one of my classes I sat next to a woman who traveled from Korea.  Once I heard two students from Brazil and one from India, speak.  Another time I met a student from Mexico.  Well, you get the picture!

While there, I received a world-class education.  My instructors included people like Dr. Andrew Weil; Dr. Mark Hyman; Geneen Roth; Deepak Chopra; Dr. David Katz and a lot of others.

It was a world different from anything I had experienced; I was now part of a movement, living my passion and mission–and having fun while I was at it.

Probably the biggest change came from my own transformation.  You see, months before I enrolled, I was stressed to the max and experienced many, many problems–personal and professional.  As a result, I gained 65 pounds, my blood pressure shot up and my knees hurt so badly that I actually remembering standing on the first floor of an apartment building–because I wasn’t sure I wanted to make the climb to the 4th floor apartment to visit someone.

So, as I learned, I also experimented on myself.  I actually consider myself my first client.  I tried all different dietary theories to learn what worked for me and what didn’t.  I experimented with different lifestyle techniques.  In short, I coached myself.

Today, I’m happy, successful, strong and passionate–and minus the 65 pounds that I had gained.

I’m also proud to be a school ambassador, so if you’d like to know more, please contact me through my website:  It’ll be one of the best decisions you ever made!


Irene Ross, CHHC, AADP is a certified nutrition and wellness coach who helps people instantly double their energy so they avoid that mid-morning or afternoon slump, get more done in less time and balance their lives.  Author of the forthcoming book, 25 Ways to Fire Up Your Day:  Increase Energy, Get More Done in Less Time, Balance Your Life, she also writes a twice-monthly newsletter called “Power Wellness.”  To subscribe (and automatically receive a free download of her mini e-book, Sugar’s Sour Story), click here: Power Wellness


New York City Mayor Proposes Ban on Large Sodas: What Do You Think?

In education, exercise, fitness, New York City, nutrition, obesity, wellness on June 1, 2012 at 3:20 am

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg has proposed a ban on all bottled and fountain sodas larger than 16 ounces.  It does not prohibit diet sodas, fruit juices, dairy-based drinks, like milkshakes, and alcohol.

The ban, which is expected to pass, applies to restaurants, movie theaters, ballpark concession stands and food carts.  It does not apply to supermarkets.

The mayor cites the obesity epidemic as the reason for this.  In fact, in New York City alone, more than half adults are overweight or obese, according to the Health Department.

As a nutrition and wellness coach, I often speak of the problems associated with sugar and the obesity epidemic–but I must admit, I have some very mixed feelings about this.

It seems to me that this only puts a bandaid–and a pretty ineffective one at that–on the root problem.  Might the time and effort–and I assume money–be better spent on education, prevention and research? What would keep a person from just re-filling the smaller glass?

Wouldn’t it be better to focus on personal responsbility and get to the root of the problem?  Wouldn’t it be better, say, for insurance policies to include  wider coverage for education and prevention, for instance, gyms and nutrition and wellness experts–who could work with the people to help them alter their unhealthy habits forever?

And why target soda?  Frankly, diet drinks are just as problematic, if not more so–given a choice, I know I would drink a regular soda than diet.  And, ironically, tomorrow is National Donut Day.  Really?  How much sugar is in those? I know one tiny chocolate cake donut has at least three (3) teaspoons of sugar in it.  Dairy-based drinks don’t add to the obesity problem?    What about the huge flavored coffees that sometimes pack as many as 10 teaspoons of sugar?

According to a report on NBC New York, It’s not the first time the mayor has tried to limit consumption of sugary drinks by city residents: in 2010, he proposed that food stamps be prevented from being used for sugary drinks, stating at the time that people needed to be protected from diseases like diabetes and cancer.

Once again, that personal responsibility issue….

Tell me what you think of this.  I’d love to hear ALL of your comments, whether or not you live in New York City.

Do you agree or not?



Irene Ross, CHHC, AADP is a certified nutrition and wellness coach who helps people instantly double their energy so they avoid that mid-morning or afternoon slump, get more done in less time and balance their lives.  Author of the forthcoming book, 25 Ways to Fire Up Your Day:  Increase Energy, Get More Done in Less Time, Balance Your Life, her website is:

She writes a free, twice-monthly newsletter, ‘Power Wellness,” full of tips for healthy eating and lifestyle.

Like her page on Facebook:  ( and get a free download of her report, Sugar’s Sour Story.  Also on Twitter (@yetmorehealth), LinkedIn and Pinterest.

Holiday Weight Gain Is Not Inevitable!

In business, business owner, career, chefs, consultant, diet, eating, entrepreneurs, exercise, farming, female executives, food, health, holiday, job, lifestyle, New York City, nutrition, vegan, weight gain, wellness on November 15, 2011 at 7:16 pm

 Join two wellness professionals, Irene Ross and Christine Zona, on Tuesday, November 29, from 6:30-7:30 will teach a FREE class to show you just how easy it is to create an effective holiday wellness strategy.  Aside from the holiday weight gain and stress, do you ever ask yourself these questions:

  • Why do I feel so tired?
  • Why is my mind so fuzzy?
  • Why can’t I sleep well?
  •  Why do I crave sweets and high-fat, high-calorie “comfort foods,” especially when I am stressed?
  • Why can’t I lose weight no matter how much dieting & exercise I do

In our FREE class you’ll learn:

  • What those cravings really mean—and how you can reduce, or eliminate them entirely, once and for all.
  • The connection between toxins and weight gain.
  • How to still eat healthfullly with limited money, time and other resources.
  • How easy it is to boost your immunity.
  • How to prepare and plan ahead when you have a big, calorie-laden event approaching

Irene Ross is a board certified health and wellness coach who works with people to help them alter unhealthy habits so they can balance their personal and professional lives.  She graduated from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition where she studied over 100 dietary theories, lifestyle management techniques and cutting-edge coaching methods.  Irene’s instructors included:  Deepak Chopra, MD: Dr. Andrew Weil; Dr. David Katz; Dr. Mark Hyman; Geneen Roth and many others. For more information, please visit her website: You can also connect with her on Facebook, Linked In or follow her on Twitter (@yetmorehealth).

Christine Zona received her BS degree in Community Health from Slippery Rock College.  A professional dancer, Christine has been teaching Ballroom since 1980.  She also won many titles in professional dance competitions held around the United States. Today, she combines her two passions, dancing and health, to teach people that want to be healthier and live a long abundant life. Visit her Facebook page to learn more:

Date:                Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Time:                6:30-7:30

Where:              560 West 43rd St (10-11 Ave), 2nd floor conference room

Cost:                FREE

RSVP:              REQUIRED.  Please call Irene Ross at 212/563-2353

 To RSVP. please e-mail:





Getting More Clients and Work in a Stressful Economic Climate

In business, business owner, career, consultant, consultants, entrepreneurs, female executives, freelance, job, lifestyle, New York City, professionalism, small business, solopreneurs, Uncategorized on September 7, 2011 at 8:13 pm

Listen, as a health and wellness coach, I sure know about stress–and what this weak economy and job market can do you.

But here’s the best coach I know!

Fabienne Fredrickson, the Client Attraction Mentor and
founder of has a generous offer (well,
free offer) that I think you’ll really enjoy. She developed a
step by step system for attracting clients to your small
business – incorporating all the essential elements needed to
ensure you have clients attracted to you. Fabienne is known
for helping solo-preneuers around the world attract more
clients, make more money and have more time off to enjoy it
all. Fabienne has a FREE audio CD entitled “How to Attract
All the Clients You Need.” It retails for $24.95 and she is
giving this away for FREE. Thousands of people have listened
to it and have had dramatic results in their business as a

To get your copy of the free CD, please visit:

In this FREE audio CD Fabienne covers how she developed the
system and reveals her secrets for attracting clients
consistely and having your business work for you, as opposed
to you always working for the business.

Here’s that link again:

What Are Your Challenges to Wellness?

In business, career, coach, decorating, environment, female executives, food, health, home, job, lifestyle, New York City, nutrition, Uncategorized, wellness on August 3, 2010 at 12:19 am

This post is going to be a little different–because I’m not going to talk to you but, rather, you’ll talk to me.  Tell me what’s on your mind!  After all, how often do you get a chance to really think about your health and wellness goals–and then discuss them with someone?

So, here are three questions:

1) What is your biggest challenge in being in peak health?

2) What is your biggest obstacle in being in the best shape of your life?

3) What is your secret desire?  (I love this question–it really gets people to open up)

I’ll check periodically for replies, and I look forward to “meeting” you!  Talk to you soon.

Very Healthy, Ultra Delicious

In bakery, chefs, cookbook, cooking, cupcakes, food, health, Los Angeles, New York City, nutrition, pastries, recipes, Uncategorized, vegan, wellness on July 9, 2010 at 11:08 pm

The other day one of my clients told me how worried she was about her husband’s nutrition. He eats a lot of “junk”, she said, and will automatically turn away, without even tasting anything that could be remotely healthy.

It’s not my style to simply lecture on the importance of eating fresh, whole foods.  I also didn’t lecture her on how eating healthy can also be fun and delicious.

But I did give her an example from my own experience.  A few months ago, I brought some cupcakes to a staff meeting.  These cupcakes came from a sweet little vegan bakery in New York City called Babycakes.  Everyone devoured them so quickly, and with such enthusiasm, I started to get a mental image of cats rolling around in catnip. But when a couple of people asked me what was in the cupcakes, I responded with “Finish them first and then I’ll tell you.”

It wasn’t what was in cupcakes but, rather, what they didn’t have.  They weren’t loaded with sugar, butter and other goo. They were just great-tasting little cakes made with healthy, natural ingredients and topped with agave-sweetened frosting.

The Babycakes cupcakes, by the way, won the coveted “Best of New York” this year in New York Magazine.

The bakery started in 2005 when the owner, Erin McKenna, discovered she had food allergies—and then couldn’t find a vegan bakery to satisfy her sweet tooth.  So she decided to start her own. Speaking of food allergies, according to the Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Network (FAAN), scientists estimate that 12 million Americans suffer from them.

Babycakes offers vegan, sugar free, dairy/soy free, and (mostly) gluten free donuts, brownies, cookies, cupcakes and other heavenly pastries. Everything is natural and healthy—but, according to McKenna, “it’s important that it also tastes good.”   Agave Nectar, a natural, low-glycemic sweetener that comes from the cactus, is often used, as is evaporated unrefined cane juice.  Other ingredients might include cold-pressed virgin coconut oil (which has been shown to have many health benefits), rice flour, a garbanzo/fava bean mix, potato starch, arrow root, etc.  McKenna boasts that items are baked, never fried.  That includes the donuts (which also received the “Best of New York” a couple of years ago.)

Although many Babycakes products are gluten free,  there are some that are made with Spelt, a distant cousin of wheat. Spelt has kind of a nutty taste it’s often preferred by health enthusiasts, because it has 15-20% more proteins, is higher in complex carbohydrates, is rich in magnesium, is lower in overall carbohydrates, has not been genetically altered, and contains enzymes that assist in glucose and insulin secretion.

The moral of this story:  Health and wellness can be delicious, enjoyable and FUN!  And, incidentally, the client told her husband that story; he became so convinced, he took a trip down to the bakery that very same day.

Today, Babycakes has locations in both New York and Los Angeles, with a cookbook available.  For more information, please visit:


Irene Ross, CHHC, AADP is a NYC-based, certified nutrition and wellness coach.  She works with people to help them instantly double their energy so they avoid that mid-morning or afternoon slump, get more done in less time and balance their lives.

Her website is:

Author of the forthcoming book, 25 Ways to Fire Up Your Day:  Increase Energy, Get More Done in Less Time, Balance Your Life, she writes a twice-monthly free newsletter called “Power Wellness”–full of tips and suggestions for healthy eating and lifestyle.  To subscribe:


Union Square Greenmarket: Healthy, Fresh–and Delicious–Food

In chefs, cooking, farming, flowers, food, fruits, Greenmarket, health, herbs, lifestyle, New York City, nutrition, recipes, restaurant, Uncategorized, vegetables, wellness on June 23, 2010 at 4:12 pm

Healthy eating certainly doesn’t need to be tasteless.  In fact, fresh, whole foods that come straight from the ground or vine or tree—without pesticides, hormones, antibiotics—have a strong, delicious flavor. They’re also much better for you!

The following are excerpts from an article that I recently wrote for the Neighborbee Blog.  It focuses on the Union Square Greenmarket because 1) I live in New York City and 2) the Union Square Market is world-reknowned, and  the largest in New York City. If you don’t live in New York City, however, please visit a greenmarket or farmer near you.

For the entire article, please go to:

If you’d like to know more about me, please visit my website:

 The Union Square Greenmarket is the largest market of Grows NYC, a not-for-profit that began 30 years ago with one small farmer’s market on the corner of 2nd Avenue and 59th Street.  Today, the Union Square Farmers Market is world-renowned and has over 140 producers who come from as far as 100 miles north; 200 miles south; the East End of Long Island. The market is located around Union Square Park, 14th to 17th Streets and from Park Avenue South to Union Square West in New York City.

Hordes of people, many with strollers and dogs, pinch, poke and sniff things like the fresh locally grown ginger that you’ll never find the likes of in a supermarket, or the fresh chervil, basil or other herbs.  Here, you’ll see some of the best chefs and restaurateurs in the world, including Mario Batali of Babbo, David Chang of Momofuko, or Alex Guarneschelli of Butter. Or maybe you’ll spot the many celebrities who shop at the market– Susan Sarandon, Aaron Neville, Meryl Streep, or John Turturro.

So if your idea of a salad is iceberg lettuce wedges, get yourself down to the Union Square Greenmarket–immediately!

Here, you’ll find the freshest, healthiest and most delicious foods on the planet, ranging from a colorful, and sometimes unusual, array of vegetables, fruits and herbs; jams; sweets; pretzels; cheeses; breads; 100% grass-fed beef; pastured chicken; fresh fish.  My friend, Claudette, insists on only buying her  fish here.  “It tastes so fresh and so different from anything in supermarkets,” she says.

 So now that you have all this great food, what do you do with it?  Well, you can talk to the farmers.  Or, you can stop by the Manager’s Station to pick up some recipes, like the “Berried Treasures Farm Salad,” created by Chef Robin Puskas of NY Kitchen (who gives a cooking demo every Friday morning) or “Sweet & Sour Rhubarb and Arugula Salad,” created by The Natural Gourmet Institute for Health & Culinary Arts who gave a cooking demo this past Saturday (June 19) morning.

 Good karma

The bottom-line is this: Farmers are a dying breed and need our support. “In fact, one farmer recently told me that if it weren’t for the greenmarket, he’d probably have to go out of business,” said Tara LaRuffa of the Union Square Greenmarket.  When you buy locally-grown from farmers, you’re helping to ensure fair wages, humane treatment of animals, minimal energy consumption, soil enrichment, and the protection of air and water quality. And, remember, things like transportation, processing, and packing stress out the environment.

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