Archive for nutrition

How to Make Healthy Eating a Part of Your Daily Routine

It is not hard to eat  healthy, but it does take some thought and preparation to make it happen.  Here are some tips to get you started in the right direction.

1) Do NOT skip meals

a)Eat breakfast –break the fast from the night before and jump-start your metabolism

b)Make lunch the biggest meal of the day when your digestion is at its peak

c)Eat a light dinner. Try to eat before 7pm so you digest your food properly before going to bed

2)Stock up on healthy snacks so you always have good options available

a)Create your own trail mix: silvered almonds, dried fruit, dried edamame, unsweetened coconut flakes

b)Hummus and veggies

c)Celery rib and peanut butter

d)Apple and nut butter

e)Popcorn and nuts

f)Plain or greek yogurt with fresh berries or grapes

g)Mozzarella stick

h) Frozen banana or grapes

i)Kashi cereal, raisins and nuts

3)Drink more water throughout the day

a)Upon rising, drink a glass of water to get one out-of-the-way

b)Fill up a one liter bottle and carry with you throughout the day

c)When hunger or sweet cravings arise, first reach for a glass of water – a lot of times we are just thirsty

4)Substitute whole grains for white foods

a)Instead of white rice, buy brown rice, barley, basmati rice or wild rice

b)Instead of instant oatmeal, buy rolled oats or steel-cut oats

c)Instead of white bread, buy sprouted or whole grain bread

d)Instead of white pasta, buy brown rice pasta, soba noodles, whole wheat pasta, or buckwheat pasta

5)When grocery shopping

a)Select different color produce so you get all the vitamin and nutrients your body needs

b)Stock up your pantry and freezer with staple goods so you can throw together a quick, healthy  dinner when you have no fresh food

c)Buy packaged size meat, fish or chicken and divide into single portion sizes and freeze

d)Have a default grocery list of 2-3 of your favorite meals that are easy to cook and you can pull together in a pinch

6)Get in the kitchen, forget the rules and start cooking

a)Make it FUN, turn on the music or put on a headset and talk with family and friends

b)Recruit your children and/or significant other to help and make it a family affair

c)Cook once, eat twice.  Make enough to freeze for another day

d)Pick one day and a couple new recipes you want to cook

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Change Is A Choice

Tonight I watched The Biggest Loser and was inspired to get off my butt and write. I must admit, I love the show. Of course, I love the field of health and fitness, but more importantly, I love rooting for the so-called underdog! That inspires me the most– to watch these people commit to changing their lives.  It is powerful stuff!  GO Biggest Loser Contestants; I am rooting for you! 

Although the show creates a very controlled environment that is hard to duplicate in our normal day-to-day lives, the contestants learn key principles. They get an Education about food and exercise, which creates Awareness about themselves and making better choices, and they have an amazing Support system.   

These three principles are the key to getting through any obstacle in life, not just weight loss. However, in order to overcome a food addiction you need to get to the root of problem and find out what is driving the behavior. This is true of any addiction whether it is food, alcohol or drugs. Essentially, they all do the same thing, which is numb, the pain. As you see on the show, behind each contestant’s weight is a story.  A story that contains a lot of pain that was too difficult to cope with so they turned to food instead. 

And I have to say, I get that. As a young adult, I was anorexic and bulimic so I, too, have a story, which led me to that place of destruction. So I have been ‘there’ although at the other end of the spectrum, but the issue is the same.  It is never about the food; it is about your feelings.   

That is why I am so passionate about health and wellness today! I can tell you this, there is nothing more powerful than to be at the optimum level of health and fitness that I am today and help others to get there too.   

In fact, I am excited. Tomorrow night I will be co-facilitating my first support group for people with eating disorders. Over the past few years, I have had the opportunity to tell my story to people who are in recovery and it has been the most powerful and empowering thing I have ever done for myself.     

The closing to my story that I share with them is this: I can tell you there is an incredible reward for working through your pain and all your “stuff”. It has led me to a newfound freedom I have never felt before. I look at things so differently today and I am a more compassionate, understanding, energetic and loving person. Who knew – it is truly amazing! The world responds to me differently and has become a mirror reflecting back to me all that I am in the form of new beginnings, peace, happiness; healthy relationships with others, and more importantly, a healthy relationship with myself. New opportunities have arisen; there are more smiles, laughter and peace within. The landscape of my life has changed drastically.  I now realize that life is precious, good and filled with greatness. With all that said, I would not change a thing about my past for it has led me to where I am and who I am today. And, I can finally tell you, I like this place. I like the person I am. And, I want to help others feel the same way about their life and the possibilities that exist for them. So cherish your dreams for they are gifts from your soul and blueprints to your future!

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Juicing for Health

Today I am a “blogger”, woohoo!  I was thrilled to write my first blog yesterday and couldn’t wait to come back and do it again today!  

As I got up this morning, I was thinking about how everything changes when the seasons change. Spring it on! As much as I am a morning person, it is much easier for me to wake-up early in the morning now. I notice that I need less sleep and wake-up before my alarm clock. Upon rising my body feels light and vibrant and my mind is clear and ready to start the day. I love that feeling, it makes me feel at my personal best. 

Then for breakfast, which I always eat, my body is now gravitating towards lighter and more cleansing foods such as cereals, fruit, or a light protein in comparison to the more warming and heavy foods I used to eat during the winter months.  In fact, I think it is time I pull out my juicer and start juicing again. Juicing is great for you, especially during the warmer months. It is the fastest way to get nutrition into your body and fuel you. Why? Because the juices contain live enzymes, vitamins, minerals, water and anutrients that don’t need to be digested or broken down by the body, so they hit the bloodstream right away and bathe your cells in pure nutrition.There is a miracle of energy supplied by live plants that comes from nothing else on this planet. I call it rocket fuel and can feel the positive effects right away. Some people have more sensitive bodies then others and can feel the effects right away, so you do have to be careful when you are first starting out. If you are interested in buying a juicer, I also suggest buying a book to get some good recipes because you’ll want to create the right ratio of fruits to vegetables in your drinks. Otherwise, if you do too much too soon it can cause the body to “cleanse” to quickly and you can feel sick, get a fast and furious headache or feel light-headed. The fruits tend to be the cleansers and the vegetables are the builders of the body.  

Some of my favorites : the carrot, apple and ginger root drink with a scoop of protein powder in it. For all you people who are worried about wrinkles and are looking to get a clear and radiant complexion, this is the drink for you!  When I start to drink this drink a couple of days in a row, my skin has a unmistakable glow to it and the whites of my eyes are brighter. It is very noticeable to me, but then again, I do a combination of a lot of things on a daily basis that can contribute to this. Another great tasting juice that tastes just like the creamsicle popsicle you used to eat as child…remember those…is the cantaloupe drink.  You MUST buy a ripe and organic cantaloupe because you juice the whole fruit, rind and all, which is actually where most of the nutrition resides.  It is one of my favorites; sweet, frothy and with a little bit of texture…  just right. 

In the summer months I tend to juice a lot, especially after I go on my long runs. Juicing is very cooling to the body, which is why you want to stay away from a lot of it during the colder months. I tend to do a lot of vegetables like celery, cucumber, parsley, green pepper, beets, carrots and apple. I choose a lot of these fruits and vegetables because of their medicinal properties. They are chock-full of nutrients and contain potassium, silicon, vitamin c, iron, beta-carotene, sulfur and zinc to name a few.

With all this talk about  juicing, I am going to pull out my juicer now! It’s GO TIME and I am ready to start my day right!

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