RANT: How Will This Year be Different?

New yearsAs we reflect on ’13 and makes plans and promises for ’14 consider what will be different?

What are you not  doing that you would like to?

How will you be better?

What patterns, beliefs and habits will you shift to become the better you?

Do you have things about yourself you hope to change (or that loved ones wish you would change)?

What keeps you from being the best version of yourself?

What obstacles prevent you from living the life you want?

What will be different?


If you find this post somewhat vague and annoying, please disregard it and/or visit some of my more entertaining posts like “Slow Down” , “When Im good…” or “Stop Making Excuses”

But if these questions spark something with in and you are truly motivated to make healthful change, contact me if you’d like help with becoming the you you want to be (wellandbalanced@gmail.com)

RANT: Give a Little

Christmas New Years 2008 024Remember when you were a kid and your parents told you it was more fun to give than receive … and you were like “That’s crazy talk!”?

You never quite got the end of the Grinch, when all the Who’s down in Whoville sang together, not bummed at all that their gifts had been jacked.

I’m not saying I wouldn’t be upset if we were robbed Christmas Eve, but let’s just say I don’t need a thing under my tree.  (And I’ve been a very good girl this year – I now compost and ‘buy local’ and think only super positive thoughts! And I even stopped using my college ID to get movie discounts!)

Now, I am just grateful to have people to love and be healthy and happy.  It sounds like a rehearsed pageant answer, but I wish I could give that gratitude, love and security to every one this season–heck, all year long!  You know what, make it a lifetime supply. Unlimited Love and Gratitude, for all.

Maybe you have to grow up, or experience loss, or just realize how lucky you are to see the joy in giving rather than receiving. (or just move a lot and realize what a pain in the rump it is to have too much stuff!)

Any whos-down-in-whooville, I hope you all are giving love love love this Christmas.  Isn’t that the point?

RANT: Breaking Bad Habits

“Choose a quit date. It can be a significant day, like a birthday or anniversary or hold no significance at all.  Start cutting back between now and then, and determine what you will do instead of smoking when you get stressed or want a cigarette”

That’s what I tell patients who are contemplating ‘smoking cessation’ (as we call it in the medical biz).

But how effective is that? If I employ the same advice with ‘sugar cessation’ or ‘dessert cessation’ would I be successful?

Could I quit?

Eight Ball says: “Not Likely”

I know it is highly unrealistic for me to never eat a dessert again.  Or to never drink a beer again.  So why would I expect a smoker to be anymore optimistic?

reaching for cake
(photo from culinarykicks.blogspot.com)

What could I do instead of snarfing down the beer and pizza that will inevitably be ordered during gatherings, football games, etc without feeling like a total social outcast?

When someone offers a cookie or cake or my Achilles heal: ICE CREAM, how do I decline without feeling like I’m missing out?

And how do I get through the holiday season not only trying not to over-indulge, but to trim down and eat healthfully to boot?!?

Sounds Daunting.

I do have patients, that quit smoking “cold turkey”, despite numerous failed attempts in the past.  Could I do the same?

Could I be successful this new year? And what foods are off-limits? Sugar? Wheat? Dairy? Meat?

There are no patches, inhalers or pills to assist me.

So how will I do it?

Here’s my list of things I will do instead of over-eating:

Eat something healthy instead (Duh)

Drink water

Make Tea

Take a lap (i.e. walk away from the apps)

Strike up Convo (distraction is key)

Chew Glee

Breath deeply

Read something

So, what bad habits do you hope to break this upcoming year?  And how will you break them?

RULE: Chew Your Food


There’s this great thing called chewing.

If you’re like me, you’ve done very little chewing and much more inhaling of food over the years.

Usually I’m shoveling in enormous bites, in between patients or while driving. Not good.

We all forget food is not for entertainment or even for taste.  We eat to stay alive and to nurture and heal our bodies.

As we enter the winter gorge-fest season, when you do eat, consider chewing the bite in your mouth before loading the next one.  The foods you eat (assuming they are real foods, not packaged or processed) have all kinds of powerful anti-aging, energy-boosting, cancer-fighting nutrients in them, but need to be “unlocked” for your body to utilize them.

How, oh wise one, do you “unlock” them?

Easy, Chewing!

Some folks recommend chewing 50 – 100 times!

What?! That does seem almost impossible, doesn’t it? Try it.  My ‘muscles of mastication’ (my jaws) were literally sore when I did this for a day.

Others say chew each bite for 30 seconds.

If you’re like me and don’t want to count to 30 over and over in my head while at a social engagement, just chew long enough to liquify your food.  Chew food into a liquid then swallow.

Chewing slowly and thoroughly will:

1. Aid in Digestion

2. Reduce Heartburn

3. Prevent Over Eating

4. Promote Weight Loss


RANT: Fa La La Lardo

Ok my lil’ Sugar Plums, tis the season for over indulgence.  If you made it through Thanksgiving without heartburn or a pant size adjustment, good on ya!  But holiday parties abound these next few weeks. So brace yourself and your belts.  I could name 900 tasty treats you are likely to encounter this Yuletide, from egg nog to saltine toffee (<-do not click there, it’s a recipe for crack.  But it’s easy and technically could be made with all natural ingredients….)

saltine toffeeDon’t do it! Don’t get sucked in to the holiday gluttony vortex!  Stay away from the smorgasbord!

Firstly, eat a handful of almonds and drink 2 glasses of water before going to any cocktail party.  Upon arriving, drop off your tasty treat (see above saltine toffee) with the host(ess) and then ask for a glass of water.  Sip this this down first, before grabbing a cocktail, and anytime awkwardness ensues.  Instead of gorging on the inevitably delicious distractions, take in the host’s family photos and decorations.  You never know what gems you may find! Don’t go all ‘sock drawer’ or anything–stick to the ground floor.   And avoid lingering in bedrooms.  As a guest, that’s kinda creepy.

If you find it relaxing or simply a must to have a cocktail or 3, opt for red wine or liquor drinks sans mixers (go for water with a squeeze of lime or honey).  Try to have a glass of water in between each one and definitely shy away from the egg-nog!  I don’t care if it’s “lite”.  You might as well have a bowl of ice cream!  Most egg nog is full of sugar and fat as well as High Fructose Corn Syrup, which we now know suppresses your body’s signal to stop eating.  So not only are you going to scarf down the ‘liquid bow of ice cream’, you are likely to eat your body weight in sausage balls and santa cookies as well.  Find the veggie tray, if there is one, or plan to eat elsewhere.santa cookies

Play it smart.  Don’t let your holiday season go to your gut!