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How to feel great during the holidays (even if Aunt Mabel offers you too much food…)

It's such a challenge. At the very time of year when you want to look and feel your best, you are confronted with more food choices than the rest of the year combined.

Depending on where you are in the world, your calorie intake might be a little different, but this is still a pretty good reference point. According to the Calorie Control Council, a typical holiday dinner can include 3,000 calories. If you include appetizers and drinks, it’s very likely around 4,500 calories in one day.

So how do you enjoy the celebrations during the holidays, without feeling like you are depriving yourself of some of your favorite comfort foods?

And how do you deal with the social pressure of not disappointing Aunt Mabel or your mother-in-law, when they keep trying to get you to eat food you normally avoid?

The easiest thing to do is to manage your food intake all the rest of the month, AND make sure you do the other things you know will give you energy and help you feel good.

Let’s...

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A goal-setting strategy unlike any you’ve heard of before

What if I told you that “positive thinking” isn’t all it’s cracked up to be? 

Well it turns out that once you think positively, your brain believes the goal is already achieved, and it saps your energy to accomplish that goal. 

NYU and University of Hamburg professor, Gabriele Oettingen, is the author of Rethinking Positive Thinking. After 20 years of research, she has developed a totally different framework that actually helps people achieve their goals.

This framework is being taught in schools, where it improves effort, homework completion, attendance, and GPA. Outside of school, this framework reduces stress, increases engagement, improves time management, and promotes physical fitness.

Ah-ha! Now we’re talking. :-)

The framework is called WOOP, which stands for Wish - Outcome - Obstacle - Plan.

Wish 

Start by stating something you’d like. It should be specific, something you can do within a time frame, and challenging but...

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Here’s Why Any ‘Ol Diet Just Won’t Do

Hi again 

Do you remember that last week we revisited high school chem class and learned about acidic and alkaline blood? If you don’t remember what that’s about, you can go back and re-read that article here.

To recap: your blood MUST have a slightly alkaline pH in order to be balanced, and if it’s off, other body systems will sacrifice themselves - by donating essential nutrients - in order to get back to the balanced level of around 7.4.

If your blood pH is too acidic, it means you are suffering from acidosis, which has many side effects.

For example, many people tell me they have trouble sleeping.

Waking up frequently to go to the bathroom, being unable to fall back to sleep at 3 am because of a “racing mind”, yet still feeling tired by the time you drag yourself out of bed at 6:30 or 7 am…

These are signs your body is overly acidic, and is working hard to eliminate the acid (peeing, perspiring, poo-ing, breathing, and even retaining fat...

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Are You SABOTAGING Your Body??

Today I’d like to talk about how the food you eat can not only impact how you feel today, but potentially have an impact on your life years from now.

If you are easily tired out or short of breath, or if you have trouble sleeping or concentrating, your food choices could be the culprit.

And if you know an older friend or relative who struggles with brittle bones and teeth, a lifetime’s worth of food choices could be at the root of the problem.

What many people don’t know is… the foods you eat could be causing your body to break down your bones, and sabotage your other body systems!

What?? How could that be?

Very simply, if you suffer from a condition called acidosis, it means your body is essentially “borrowing from Peter to pay Paul”. In other words, stealing critical nutrients from your bones in order to balance out what is missing from the rest of your body, thanks to your diet. 

The results of this nutrient-borrowing include low energy,...

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How to Get Over the Hump

It can feel overwhelming sometimes.

You’ve been living your life, maybe raising kids, running your own business or showing up at someone else’s business.

You find you have less and less time to do the important things in life. Like exercise daily, eat right, sleep enough, and hydrate all day.

Maybe you’re the type of person who already takes pretty good care of yourself, but have gotten away from it recently because of all the other demands of life.

Or maybe you’re the type of person who has “tried” to “get healthy”... But you struggle to be consistent and stay committed.

So you set big goals for yourself. “I’ll run 10 miles a week.” “I’ll only eat vegetables with a little protein and fruit.” “I’ll get to bed at 9:30 every night.” “I’ll drink 10 glasses of water every day.”

Sure, those are important to your health, but it’s challenging to make those sorts of...

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Why I drag my sorry butt out of bed at 5 am

The alarm clock comes on and at first I pretend I don’t notice.

I think that maybe, if I shut my eyes a little more tightly, it won’t really be true…

But then my mind begins to wake up, I start remembering the things I had planned for the day, and I manage to put both feet on the floor and shlep across the room and down the hall,  into the bathroom. 

Some days start like that. It doesn’t matter if the alarm comes on at 5 am or 8 am (8 am?? Let’s face it; that never happens!), it’s still a challenge to drag myself out of bed. Note to self: Instead of a nice comfy bed, get one with sandpaper on top of nails. It will be easier to get up.

I hit the snooze button a couple of times. 

I finally drag myself out of bed and slink into the bathroom in the dark, where I make myself as presentable as a zombie can be. I try not to bang around too much; the last thing I want to do is wake anyone else in the house or I’ll never get out the...

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Are You in a Bucket of Crabs?

You may have heard the story of a bucket of crabs before.  If not, you’re in for a treat as this story is one that I think about often – not just when it comes to working out and eating healthy.  I think of it when it comes to my business, my faith/spirituality, and my lofty goals.

Here’s the story…

I was walking down a pier in Florida one summer and noticed a fisherman sitting near the edge.  As I walked by I noticed he had a bucket full of crabs.

The fisherman seemed focused on his line and the expanse of the ocean that was before him.  I don’t think he realized that the crabs were about to crawl right out of the bucket as it had no lid.

Being the helpful person that I am, I decided to tell the fisherman that he was about to lose his crabs.

The fisherman turned around to face me.  He looked down at the bucket full of crabs and said, “Oh, they won’t go anywhere.  If I just had one crab in there it could easily...

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What is Intermittent Fasting and Should You Try It?

Fasting is not a new concept. For thousands of years populations have been fasting for religious, self-disciplinary, and health promoting purposes. Fasting, or purposefully going without food for a predetermined amount of time, is gaining popularity in the health community as scientists recognize its benefits. Studies have shown a decrease in rates of diabetes, cancer, cardiovascular disease, hypertention, and even neurological decline when subjects participate in some form of “intermittent” fasting. Intermittent fasting (IF) is the flexible term being used to describe any diet pattern that includes going an extended period of time without eating. There are a lot of methods people use to incorporate a fast into their diets, let’s talk about the why, the how, and any risks you should be concerned if you want to try practicing a little IF yourself.

How does it work? In short, fasting works because it is calorie restriction, and calorie restriction within itself is...

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How to Pick the Most Fresh, Nutritious, and Delicious Produce: Part 2

Last week we talked about the best varieties of vegetables to be eating and how to select them at the grocery store. This week we’ll be discussing the best fruits. Fruit often gets a bad rap because it contains “sugar” but I am here to tell you that fruit is an essential part of a healthy diet! The sugar found in fruits is natural and perfectly balanced with water, fibrous skins, flesh, and seeds, and phytochemicals that help balance your body’s blood sugar response to the sweetness. Fruit is some of the most antioxidant rich food you can eat and contains polyphenols, anthocyanins, resveratrol and many other beneficial compounds that can act like medicine to our bodies. A diet rich in these healthy fruits can ward of disease, help your tissues feel young and strong, and even help slow the effects of aging. Here’s a list of the best varieties and tips for your use!

 

Stewed Apricots with Coconut Granola

Serves: 2

Total Prep Time: 15 minutes

...

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How to Pick the Most Fresh, Nutritious, and Delicious Produce: Part 1

The grocery store is full of both the best and the worst foods for your body. We’ve all heard the advice to stick to the perimeter of the grocery store (where the produce, meat, eggs, and dairy are all kept) and avoid the aisles that hold the more processed goods like chips, drinks, pop-tarts or cake mix. There’s more to be learned about the MOST nutritious foods however! First of all, choosing the right grocery store can make a huge difference in nutritional quality of your produce. High quality grocery stores should have a wide array of varieties, fresh, regularly managed produce, and feature local growers whenever possible. Shop at farmers markets and roadside stands when available. These will be the freshest way to enjoy food straight from the ground. Some farmers pick their produce the very day they are sold, talk about superior nutrition! Lastly, go to the grocery store every few days. Shopping a few times a week can help ensure you are eating produce when...

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