RANT: What Are You Doing?

New yearsAs the New Year looms, and resolutions bloom in your mind, think to yourself.  What am I doing? Am I being as kind as I can be? As healthy as I can be? As patient as I can be? The best example I can be? Am I taking time for me? Am I giving myself to others? Am I present throughout the day? Am I doing things I love?

Um, no? Well, why not? What keeps you from doing what you love? And what shifts do you need to make in your world to allow you to be a better, kinder, more thoughtful, happier, loving you?

How do you spend most of your days? Are you satisfied? fulfilled?  If not, look inside—not the fridge, not the inside of an empty wine glass—take a look inside you. That’s where change begins. That’s where you find the real, better, brighter version of you.

RULE: Sleep

Have you heard the phrase “I’ll sleep when I’m dead?” I used to think this was clever, I now know how important sleep really is!

There is a reason there is a Starbucks on every corner, and it’s because most of us do not get enough sleep.  But how much is enough? 4 hours is not enough, neither is 6.  A lot of patients tell me “I don’t need much sleep”. Then I remind them, they are in the doctor’s office, so something is bothering them.

Sleep is when the body heals. Sleep is when your body grows–when your blood cells regenerate, your skin cells rejuvenate, your mind rests so you can tackle tomorrow.  sleep well

With regards to weight, people who get less than 8 hours and those who work the night shift often weigh more than their well-slept counterparts.

Not enough sleep increases your body’s secretion of Ghrelin (the hormone that makes you feel hungry) and decreases your body’s production of leptin (the hormone that makes you feel full). Two huge reasons to get more sleep!

Lack of sleep throws the body into a stressed state, which causes a rise in cortisol.  Cortisol is that stress hormone that causes free radicals, which in turn causes more rapid aging and propensity to illness (from colds to cancer) two more reasons to get 8 hours of sleep. Every night.

RANT: Tis’ The Season

christmas-hollyThe holidays are a frenzy of food and family and gifts and chaos.  We often loose track of what it is all about.  Caught in the stress of having the right ‘stuff’–under the tree, on the menu, the right stuffed packed as you load up the car or suitcase for holiday travel.  Spend 3 minutes at any baggage claim or check out line and you’re likely to witness some form of melt down.

Remember this season is about Giving.  Not things, but love.  It’s about Sacrifice.  Wanting something better for others.  It’s about Faith.  Believing we are all deserving, none of us better than the other.  And believing in the higher power that guides us.  It’s about Kindness.  Be kind to each other this season.  When you are sleep deprived, and tired of having 13 people jammed in to one house, or tired of waiting in line,  think of the wonderful blessings you have.  Remember the losses suffered.  Take a moment each day to give, to be kind, to sacrifice, to love.  Truly love.

RANT: The New Year’s Diet

For 7 years strait I have said “get healthier” and “remember people’s names better” as my New Year’s Resolutions.  And every year has ended with minimal progress in either arena.

Although….. this year was a success! I still fumble with acquaintances’ appellations, but fortunately, thanks to the Integrative Institute of Nutrition I have found my passion and found a way to make real change in my health and diet.  You can get a free nutrition book from the link above if you tell ’em I sent you.  You can thank me later, not just for the free book, but for the amazing information inside it!

From it, I learned the New Year’s resolution diet fails for the same reasons it doesn’t work during the year. In order to make real change, you have to change your behaviors, and to change your behaviors, you have to change your thoughts and feelings.  But how do you change your thoughts and feelings? It’s easy, and it’s called Hypnotism!

healthy new year

Seriously? I’m kidding, It’s called Education!  Learning about what your body needs and how to manage cravings and emotional eating.  Because that’s what causes most bad eating habits.

So, what will you do differently in the new year? (Besides curl up with your new awesome free book)

While you are pondering that, if your are the type that wants a tool, to help you meet your body’s nutritional needs and shed some weight, I recommend you check out the following short term or long term weight loss products. But remember long-term health must address all aspects of your life.  Start by giving your body the nutrients it needs.  Not some fad diet.  When your body is getting good sleep, when you are satisfied and  feel loved, when you are eating real food and taking clean, high-quality supplements, your cravings subside.

RULE: Enjoy Your Splurge

If you are going to indulge, make it count.

Have you ever tried to curb your sugar craving with a Snackwell cookie or a low-fat, sugar-free tasteless ‘dessert’? What happens? You are left unsated and wanting more.

Don’t waste time with a waxy Tootsie roll or a sugar-free, taste free, faux variation of dessert.  Go for the real thing. And allow yourself to enjoy the deliciousness.  Truly savor it. Don’t feel an ounce of guilt over it. That just makes you feel lousy and in turn, eat more. Opt for the most ridiculously delectable treat you can find, that is made with real ingredients.

May I make a suggestion?ice cream sandwiches

Groove ice cream sandwiches (www.greatfeelingfoods.com). They are unbelievably good AND the ONLY ice cream product I’ve found that does not contain High Fructose Corn Syrup (besides Bryers, but I prefer to buy from the ‘little guy’, or in this case, the very nice, hard-working ‘little gal’, Kim Netting, who is making responsible food).

Real food with real ingredients.

That’s what it’s all about. Nowadays mom’s homemade chocolate chip cookies aren’t a treat. Cookies are available at every grocery store, vending machine, every restaurant, in the airport, everywhere.  But these’s aren’t moms homemade cookies.  These are larger versions made weeks ago, shipped on a truck, and are loaded with ingredients and chemicals that keep them from spoiling; though they taste good, these un-natural additives are terrible for us.  So if you’re going to splurge. Do it right. find something made locally with natural ingredients.  I’d much rather you eat the real thing.  It’s actually more healthy.

RECIPE: Easiest Lunch Ever!

You’re not going to believe you hadn’t thought of this yourself.  Or maybe you already have, but didn’t think it blog-worthy.

Back when I was eating massive amounts of food while hoping to trim down (which has been most of my life, really), I tried the Atkins’ Diet. A diet that can be really effective, initially, plus you get to eat cheese!  No carbs for 2 weeks, and not being a vegetable lover (at the time) left me trying things like melting cheese on a plate, which my college roommate and her boyfriend cleverly called “Plate-O-Cheese”.  They still tease me about what I considered to be culinary genius!  But now I’ve got something even better. It’s fast! It’s warm! It’s savory! Your kids’ll eat it! And best of all it’s healthy! Are you ready?

I don’t think you’re ready….. 2012-12-11 19.40.39

Arugula and Parmesan Explosion! (we’ll call it)

In a bowl combine

2-3 cups of Arugula (could sub spinach if you’re a wimp)

1/4 cup of grated real parmesan cheese (not the powdered junk)

gently place the delicate ingredients into the microwave and heat for ~ 35 seconds

(if you are more refined and like cleaning pots, you could do this stove-top style)

BAMB! Arugula and Parmesan Explosion!  Trust me, you’ll want seconds!

 

If this is too simple for you, bake it a top a chicken breast or mix it with pasta or qunioa

Sub spinach for arugula if you wish. Make it your own. Just make it!