The microbiome is something we’ve been hearing more and more the last few years and I’m sure you’ve been wondering what the heck it is. Right?

Well, I’m gonna share a little microbiome info with you so you can familiarize yourself with your bod pod – it’ll help put your big health picture together to see how everything’s connected.

Then I’ve got a tasty tapas plate for a fabulous after school snack for kids, parents, teachers and anyone else that wishes they were 10 years old again back in school… {As always, check out my recipes if you are looking for more easy healthy recipes or healthy snack recipes.}

Here we go!

The microbiome is made up of more than 100 trillion microbes, which outnumbers our human cells by a 10:1 ratio. The GOOD microbes are supporting your immune system, protecting you from viruses, detoxing your body and spending time in your gut keeping you at a healthy weight (if you’ve got good microbes in your microbiome).

But, along with the GOOD microbes, we’ve got the BAD guys too.

The bad guys cause inflammation, chronic illness and disease, obesity and much more, which is why it’s SO important to keep your gut super healthy to achieve long-term health. When you keep your gut flora in check with a mix of more good than bad, you’re in a good position!


A few ways to help keep your microbiome strong n’ healthy

  1. Get outside and get your hands dirty (plant flowers, garden, mow your grass, etc., anything to connect your immune system to the soil’s trillions of microbes).
  2. Remove factory farmed dairy, eggs and all animal protein and use organic instead because you are killing off your good bacteria when you eat factory farmed foods that are full of antibiotics, growth hormones, pesticides and herbicides. Yuck! Read more about the benefits of buying organic.
  3. Stop using hand sanitizers. Trust me, they’re full of chemicals and they’re causing more problems than you can imagine.
  4. Add in high quality probiotics to build your good gut flora.
  5. Eat prebiotics to encourage the growth of your good bacteria in your gut. Examples of prebiotics are artichokes, gluten free oats, onions, asparagus, beans, sauerkraut, kombucha, pickled veggies and kimchi. Read about the dirty dozen to see which to buy organic!

Have you been focusing on your gut health and microbiome? If not, it’s a good idea to start with your gut and work from there. I’ve learned that all health issues stem from your gut so start working on building a strong microbiome for long-term fabulous health!



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Try to buy everything organic. Here’s why: The Benefits of Eating Organic.

Back to School (After School) Tapas Plate
Serves: 6
Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Soy-Free, Vegan, Vegetarian, Sugar-Free
Author: Amie Valpone
Recipe type: Entree


  • 1 cup red quinoa
  • 1 large ripe avocado pitted and diced
  • 1 tsp. finely chopped fresh basil plus more if needed
  • 1 tsp. finely chopped fresh cilantro plus more if needed
  • 2 scallions thinly sliced
  • fresh lemon juice to taste
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 15 oz. BPA free can white beans, drained and rinsed
  • extra-virgin olive oil to taste
  • 4 kale leaves finely chopped and stems removed
  • 2 stalks celery diced
  • 1/4 cup finely diced red onion
  • 1 Tbsp. finely chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 15 oz. BPA free can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 2 roasted red peppers finely chopped
  • large pinch fresh lemon zest
  • balsamic vinegar to taste


  1. Cook quinoa according to package directions.
  2. Meanwhile, prepare guacamole by tossing avocado, basil, cilantro, scallions and lemon juice with sea salt and pepper, to taste. Set in the fridge.
  3. Combine white beans and toss with olive oil, sea salt, pepper and lemon juice, to taste. Set aside.
  4. Combine kale leaves with 1 tsp olive oil and massage with your hands until kale is very soft. Transfer to a large bowl, add remaining ingredients and sea salt and pepper, to taste.
  5. Portion serving plates with cooked quinoa, guacamole, white beans and chickpea mixture. Drizzle with balsamic vinegar to taste. Serve.

Nutrition Facts
Back to School (After School) Tapas Plate
Amount Per Serving
Calories 186 Calories from Fat 63
% Daily Value*
Fat 7g11%
Saturated Fat 1g6%
Sodium 201mg9%
Potassium 596mg17%
Carbohydrates 26g9%
Fiber 5g21%
Sugar 1g1%
Protein 7g14%
Vitamin A 4315IU86%
Vitamin C 60mg73%
Calcium 91mg9%
Iron 2mg11%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.


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