What do you get with 1 pregnancy, followed by 10 months of nursing, followed immediately with a second pregnancy, and then 12 months of nursing? One wild ride on a 40 month plus hormone train.

Hormones are fragile, essential, frustrating and amazing all in one. They are often overlooked, but crucial to our health, and a wellness plan. Signs and symptoms of hormonal imbalance include an inability to lose weight, weight gain, cravings, mood swings, brain fog, sleep troubles, excess fatigue, PMS, acne, low tolerance to stress, excess weight around the mid-section and or hips and thighs, and low sex drive, to name a few. This laundry list of symptoms is one that many consumers share, but starting now there are things we can do to improve the hormonal imbalance.

The fist step in finding relief begins with lifestyle and removing the problem(s), beginning with hormone disruptors. These include:

  • Birth control
  • Plastics – coming from Ziplock bags to water bottles, shower curtains, etc. And plastic is tough on our endocrine system beyond BPA. Items will be marketed BPA free, but that doesn’t mean the problem is fixed. Opt for glass water bottles, storage containers, silverware and wash all the kiddie plates/sippy cups verse cleaning and heating them in a dishwasher. Research shows that even low-dose exposure can be harmful. From altered immune function to stimulating cancer, BPA and the likes are not worth it.
  • Skip canned foods, even if it says BPA-free. Opt for frozen, fresh or dried versions for what you need in a meal or recipe. Also, go green and ask for receipts to be sent to your email when possible. Holding a receipt for 5 seconds can transmit endocrine disruptors through the skin.
  • Chemicals in makeup and body/shower products, cleaning supplies, fragrances, detergents, etc. Have you ever read the ingredient list on the products you use on your body and hair? It’s worthwhile as we absorb up to 60% of what we put on our skin. This is especially true for that product we want to work 24/7: deodorant.
  • Hygiene. Wash hands, avoiding fragrance and antibacterial hand soaps, every time before eating.
  • Conventionally grown produce. I had a client comment to me how odd it is that her mouth itches every time she eats an apple that isn’t organic. I echoed how this symptom is uncomfortable, but not far from the norm. Our food is sprayed with pesticides, herbicides and can be contaminated with industrial runoff. As much as possible, buy and eat organic and free-range food to limit exposure to such chemicals.
  • Filtered water is far safer and healthier than tap. Tap water can be contaminated with lead to birth control residue. Filter water for drinking and for bath and shower water.

Secondly, give your liver some love. The liver is not only the fat burning organ but also a detoxing machine. Methods, to nurturing your detox pathways include:

  • supplement wisely (high-quality probiotics, herbs, evening primrose oil, Chaste Tree, methylated vitamins*)
  • eat more real food, grown in nature, than packaged,
  • eat clean protein sources,
  • sweat weekly,
  • drink half of your weight in ounces of clean water, every day,
  • nurture your gut health,
  • stabilize blood sugars,
  • eat balanced meals with animal protein, healthy fat and high-fiber carbohydrates,
  • once diet becomes consistent and balanced, do a reputable food-based cleanse.

Last, but not least, get into the right mindset. Stress competes with sex hormones, and if you ar chronically under stress, your other efforts in regulating hormones are nearly a wash. A few things I recommend: start the day with a list of things you are grateful for. You can do this in your head, or better yet, whip out a journal. Today I am grateful for my children’s smiles, for my insulin pump and my iPhone, so I can Facetime and easily connect with my husband while he is traveling. At the end of the day, in bed, run through some winnings you had for the day. Last night I listed out 1) my blood sugar never went over 151 mg/dl, 2) I had a badass workout, 3) I had some really good client interactions, 4) I fueled myself with a lot of nutritious food, and my kids ate decently too. Getting my kids excited about some of the foods I make them, becomes an art and a balancing act.

Stress isn’t bad, but if we can’t manage it, it becomes harmful. Reel it in, use it to help you grow, and let go of what you can. Get plenty of rest and go live your fullest life, being patient with your journey. Balancing hormones can take 3-6 months on average, but it depends on the case and level of commitment.

Cheers to you and good health,



*Vitamins are tricky. Bottom-line you want to source vitamins that are pharmaceutical grade and sold from a health practitioner. Supplements are not FDA regulated and you want to be careful with what brands you trust. Getting supplements from a health practitioner is the best method to know you are supplementing correctly and getting a high-quality end product. If you need help, flick me an email at [email protected] 




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Diabetes and Womanhood

Concluding My 21 Day Cleanse

New to this site? This is one of 4 posts on my 21 Day Standard Process Purification experience. If you haven’t already, be sure to read the first 3 posts of this series.

Now onto the juicy stuff!img_4308

I feel awesome. I have so much energy and I am the leanest I’ve been in 5 years; at least strongest and body fat percentage. This is a BIG deal. I don’t have the healthiest genes coming into 25 years of type 1 diabetes and just over 2 years with a low thyroid. Weight comes off like molasses, and after doing this program, it seems easy. I better be careful, I am going to be jinxed for saying that!

But I am now convinced. We need to have a liver tune-up annually if not every quarter. The liver really is our fat burning organ, and after concluding this program, I now want to position a cleasne as a priority with my weight loss clients.


Concluding Remarks:

  • MEASUREMENTS: So how much weight did I lose? Nearly 5 pounds! I was definitely pleased. While I weighed-in on day 1 and 21, I also thought about doing tape measure measurements, but easily decided I didn’t want to get stuck on any numbers as I went about the program.  I wanted to 1) focus on gaining the most health as possible, 2) not weigh-in during the program at all, and 3) use my appetite and listening skills to zero in on what my body was craving for food choices. If I were to hop on the scale daily, I would have let my dietitian brain take over and dictate my meals. Additionally, I started this program at one of my lowest weights in the last 2 years. Concluding the 3 weeks I was shocked to see I lost any additional weight. No doubt, I am pleased, but I am even happier with how healthy I feel. The only bad news? I really need to break-up with coffee. In the meantime, green tea/matcha is doing the trick.
  • TOOLS: A few things I really valued during this cleanse, besides the obvious sweet potatoes, included:
    • A good blender. I am thankful I had a blender that could liquify everything from beets, carrots to spinach. img_4300
    • A food processor. I used this when I started making pancakes out of the SP protein powder for breakfast,
    • Coconut butter and coconut flakes – maybe a bigger love, over sweet potatoes,
    • Bananas – they always made a smoothie better. I typically used half of a banana or 1/3 of one,
    • Avocados,
    • Raw pumpkin seeds,
    • Fresh herbs and ginger. I loved ginger in the smoothies,
    • The literature provided with the program including the Guide the 1 Degree of Change Cookbook. While I did not obsessively use either, the list of allowed foods was important and I loved looking over recipes just to gather meal ideas.
    • Journaling. Regardless of what program I am doing, tracking how I feel and what I am doing is so powerful. Journaling allowed me to put more faith into the program, noticing the smallest changes, which I believe generated more results. This practice helped me capture the mind-body aspect of this protocol. img_4313
  • ADVICE: For anyone considering this 21 day program, you are in good hands. This cleanse is a real food based program, with food-based supplements and herbs. I was never hungry and the cleanse targeted organ nourishment and support. I feel different and a better version of myself. Be sure to order your product well ahead of time and read the Guide and Cookbook front to back before beginning. This cleanse was honestly easy, but it was only easy because I went into each day having an idea of what foods I was going to put together for my meals and snacks. Batch cooking is key, and forgo the scale and measurements while conducting the detox, so you can use your true senses of what your body needs for fuel and repair. Shop smartly. I bought a lot of the ingredients from Thrive Market, and got wild seafood, protein and vegetables from bargain groceries. I did not have to go to expensive markets to do this program. All in all, no matter what cleanse people do/nutrition coaches recommend, they need to be recommended uniquely. Send me a an email if you want help deciding.
  • MODIFICATIONS: This exact cleanse recommends no animal protein until day 11. I however, would advise clients to do at least day 1-3 with no animal protein, and if able day 1-5. As for eggs, they are not advised, but if someone knows they are no sensitive to them, and will have less stress with the program, to go ahead and include them. The cleanse also suggests one can use quinoa and lentils, and I’d only use those if needed during the vegetarian phase. If able, I’d remove quinoa, lentils and eggs entirely. Lastly, I would not limit fat. I suggest clients use their intuition and appetite in regulating fat intake.
  • DETOXING: In addition to removing many allergens from the diet (dairy. gluten, corn, soy, beans) I incorporated hot yoga, dry brushing, trampoline work and focused on fluids more than what was emphasized with the Guide. I also avoided quinoa.

Day 15 – Like last weekend we went out and stayed up late. With this, I woke with a roaring appetite. I made a pancake out of the cleanse protein powder. If you are curious about such recipes, download the free Standard Process app on your smartphone. In all, the pancake was just what I needed. My Sunday played out as expected.

Day 16 – Monday – feeling lean and mean. Workouts are great and my mind is clear.

Day 17 – Tuesday – I was headed back home from a visit at my sister’s with her and her 3 little boys and my mom. The day went fine, but we stopped at Chipotle for lunch. I abide by the rules with allowed foods, but had the fajita vegetables on a salad with chicken. I should have gone with their pork because it is not cooked with soybean oil, and should have left out the fajita vegetables. They too arimg_4309e cooked in low quality oil and I could feel it. I felt moody and had cravings. As soon as I got home from the long drive, I had a bowl of sweet potato wedges seasoned with coconut oil/butter and sea salt. I closed the night, grounding myself and attended a hot yoga session.

Day 18 – Woke determined to finish strong. I had a pancake I made from the SP protein powder, a shake for lunch and a salad and turkey for dinner. Fish is recommended to be the first animal protein choice, but I went with what I had on hand as were are finishing up some items before we leave town again for Christmas. One really cool thing today – I felt like my workout was on fire. I pushed myself so hard and I was proud of how much weight I lifted and level of intent I put into my exercise. I think I was smiling while I was running too. Maybe it was my food and re-focus on the program, and or I was in the Christmas spirit.

Day 19 – My mind is on the finish line, but also reviewing how I want to carry on after this program. I think I am going to move towards a paleo AIP diet, but I will mix in the SP protein powder for smoothies or pancakes and continue to eat a lower animal protein lunch. I think the way I adapted my lunch during this 21 days was the biggest needle pusher for a better physique and my energy.

Day 20 – A full day of last minute Christmas shopping and enjoying the day and lunch with my mom for her birthday. I did have wine with our date, but I felt fine and I was sure to enjoy it without feeling guilty.

Day 21 – Christmas Eve! I feel great and cheersed the cleanse for everything it gave me.


JANUARY CLEANSE – If you are interested in doing a cleanse in the New Year, Standard Process is kicking off their 21 Day Standard Process Purification program with a webinar on the 9th of January, and the diet/supplement regime starts on the 10th. Let me know if you need to order a kit, and I will get you what you need. Their cleanse has dairy free and a standard version (both ~ $235)

This program has a Guide and a full eBook (1 Degree of Change) with step by step meal plans and a free app you can download, which has tracking tools, shopping lists/list builder and recipes from the meal plan.

A lot of information, but all of the above makes the program really easy to follow. Hope you have a healthy New Year and entire 2017 in whatever way you choose to strive for your best health.

For people wanting to do this cleanse in January, be sure to participate in the free weekly webinars. First webinar starts January 9th.

My Skinny Jeans and The Holidays

white-sparkler-fire-holiday-festive-background-62500607On average, can you guess how much we tend to gain this time of year? MedPage Today has the details, and while I can layout all the calculated percentages, the gist is, people gain. Above all, the time it takes to put weight on, is nothing compared to the time it takes to shake it off.

So this season, aim to maintain. Yes, don’t try to lose weight, just maintain your weight. By New Years, you will be 1-5 pounds ahead of the average. A few tips on how to maintain:

  • Solidify your ongoing good habits. While eating predominately healthy, real food, we need to have a casual plan for meals throughout the week. Don’t skip meals, and stick to a meal routine. Meals should include fat (yes, we need more fat than most people think), protein and moderate carbohydrates. The golden rule I provide to clients is start the day off with protein (20-30 grams) to prevent cravings and snacking later in the day and then follow-up lunch and dinner with a palm-sized portion of protein, 1/4 of the plate coming from fruit or ancient grains, and the other half of the plate being vegetables, starchy (potatoes, parsnips, plantains) and non-starchy kinds. Have more of the starchy vegetables if you are active.
  • Eat breakfast. Even if you wake-up some mornings and decide you are not hungry, go about eating around the brunch hour and assess how much more you eat in the evening. I am not saying everyone carries their highest calorie intake into the few hours before bed, but more often my non-breakfast eaters do, and this time of day is the hardest to make the cleanest and healthiest choices.
  • Cap your time on Snapchat and Instagram and start organizing your kitchen, recipes and grocery list. The more organized and prepared we are with easy to grab snacks and batch-cooked meals, healthy eating is the obvious choice. Don’t overhaul your diet, just take one step closer to the farm. Instead of chips and granola bars, have nutsand fruit or vegetable. Instead of a protein bars, have hard boiled eggs or grassfed jerky.
  • Grocery shop every week. Even if there are more social gatherings this month, still purchase plenty of produce. When I am busy I am the queen of buying frozen items like berries, broccoli, cauliflower, green beans, mango, etc. This season is a great time to enjoy warm food, and warm berries in the evening is a great treat, and roasted vegetables (from frozen) can go a long way for a healthy dinner and leftovers.
  • If you are not getting 60 ounces of water a day by the afternoon, up your game. Being hydrated is one of the best things you can do for yourself. And it’s cheap!
  • Buddy up. Find a partner who has a similar health goal, and communicate daily with food ideas and challenges, using each other for support.

If you are the host, or attending parties:

  • If you are overseeing most of the food, make all you can ahead of time and freeze Approaching the event with fewer to-do’s will make the experience more fun and manageable.
  • When reaching for a treat at a party, opt for something you are honestly and truly going to enjoy and have time to chew and taste. Additionally, contribute to the party and bring a healthy app and dessert.
  • Indulge in the memories at holiday parties verse food. Not often do we think back on a memory and say, “I was so glad I ate all that food.” Keep portions in check, but also see how much you can laugh.
  • If you have a day of baking on the calendar, be sure to taste only what you need to. A teaspoon should be more than enough. If you need a distraction for your mouth while the house begins to smell like chocolate, write down your goal, pour yourself some tea, and pop in a piece of gum.

Secondly, the holidays are so much fun. Keep your perspective positive during this busy time of year and take care of yourself inside and out. Above we touched on food, yet, prioritize mental health too.

  • Pencil in a few extra sessions of yoga, briefly write up a gratitude list each morning, download a meditation app (Calm, HeadSpace, 10% Happier, etc) and or enjoy a good book.
  • Be sure to clock in enough sleep. Strive for at least 8 hours. When we are sleep deprived we tend to eat more food, make poorer food choices and move less overall.

Happy holidays, and cheers to the New Year in good health!


Lose Weight Naturally and Healthily

This is a bold title. If weight loss was a matter of understanding a top 3 tip list, then you would probably not be reading this post right now. It’s hard, complicated, confusing and not a one size fits all approach. But with the tidbits I am going to list will help all people in the journey of losing pounds; and surely it is NOT a formula of calories in (eaten) = calories out (exercise).

Chicago Dietitian

Chicago Nutritionist

Chicago RD

Tip #1 – Eat foods ideal for a hormonal/metabolic response in the body.

What does this mean? We want to make meals and snacks from foods that do not cause an insulin/blood sugar spike nor inflammation. What foods does this mean to avoid? Obvious ingredients such as processed foods, man-made oils, vegetable oils, sugar, gluten containing grains, and all grains for some, dairy for some, GMO foods, conventional protein, to name a few. It’s hard to tell what foods we are each individually sensitive to, thus this proves to be one negotiable reason to do an elimination diet, following a paleo template by eating foods of only clean protein (wild seafood, grassfed meat, organic poultry, pasture-raised eggs), heaps of vegetables, including starchy forms like yams, sweet potatoes and the likes, fruit, nuts, seeds, and healthy fats from olive oil, coconut oil, lard, bacon grease and avocado. Once the lapse of time is up, reintroduce avoided foods, dairy, grains gluten free versions and gluten full grains and legumes and assess how the foods affect digestion, sleep, energy, mental clarity and mood to determine if it’s a good fit for you or not.

Tip #2 – Focus on quality over quantity.

I was listening to a podcast yesterday, The Paleo View, and the hosts were elaborating on how other (healthier) countries spend more on food and less on healthcare, vs the U.S. stance on spending more money on healthcare compared to our cheap food supply. What does this indicate? While it does not prove a causal relationship it’s interesting to consider when we are forced to spend more on our food, perhaps we appreciate it more and make better choices. Just a thought, and indeed this is something I brought to light when I lived in Australia where food was much pricier than a grocery run here in the States. Yet, let’s hit directly on this tip. What do I mean by quality over quantity. Do you know anyone who lost weight by eating 100 cal packs? I do. But can I vouch they sustained that weight loss? I am afraid not. When we want to lose weight, we need to choose healthy ingredients, including foods that are rich in nutrition, protein, fat and fiber. Many of my clients come to our first session a bit fat-phobic, and I have to help them feel comfortable in adding more fat items to their meals, enabling satiety and happiness from their food. As well, protein is very important. We need a base of it at each meal to help keep us sustained for hours. Lastly, when and if budget allows, sourcing produce that is organic (I recommend following a dirty dozen/clean 15 list), high quality protein, clean dairy (organic, grassfed, raw, and only if one tolerates it) can also enhance nutrition in one’s diet. Lastly, losing weight is not about tracking every bite of food in a journal or app. It’s not about hitting an exact calorie target. It’s about eating a balance of protein, fat and carbohydrates and growing an intuition of understanding what our body craves and needs. We are naturally inclined to eat ideal portions of protein, where we could use more structure on carbs and fat. To know what can work, think about what your body wants. If it’s ice-cream, dig deeper to understand what can fill that craving. Perhaps it’s an emotional void, perhaps you need more fat in your diet. Work to understand what your body needs.

Tip #3 – Being health is a journey, and bring a water bottle!

One of the easiest things we can do is drink more water. Hydrate throughout throughout the day and keep water handy wherever you may be. And understand health is a journey. If we take 2 steps forward and one step back, that is success. Enjoy the ride because life is short and food is pleasure.

FAQ – Breastfeeding & (Paleo) Diet Change

If you are a new mother, breastfeeding and wanting to shed some weight, you may enjoy this common FAQ. If you have any experiences to add, please comment; we would love to hear from you.

My sweet nephew Beau

Client FAQ:

“I’m looking to jump start losing the rest of my baby weight and was thinking of going paleo, as I have before with significant other. However, I do have some concerns about changing my diet THAT much since I am breastfeeding. My question is: do you have any info on the affects of paleo while breastfeeding? Is there a way to ease into it so that it won’t affect my milk supply? Any info you can find would be so helpful.”


While my response is not black and white everyone, hence I do not know exactly what foods are currently being consumed, I believe it is advisable and surely should not negatively impact milk supply switching to a whole food diet, such as a paleo diet. Yet, it is crucial to keep calories adequate. With breastfeeding calorie needs can increase by 200-500 calories. Keeping hydration up is almost, if not more important too. Drink that H2O.

While I am not yet a mother, there are testimonials of moms who have breastfeed their children on both a paleo diet and a Standard American Diets and have found these observations:

  • Paleo breastfeed babies (meaning mother ate a paleo diet) had better sleep, fewer spit ups, less gas and few to no rashes on the bum or face.

Of course this is not scientific data, and all babies are different, but do a Google search and see what you find. I think there is some truth in the consistency of the above noted trends.

Overall, making the change to paleo or to a cleaner diet, you need support. Whether it’s your significant other helping you, family or frineds, I too am happy to coach you along. Please don’t hesistate to ask.

Hands down, you are a wonder woman. Having a baby is not a piece of cake and these breastfeeding months are not a bed of roses either. Changing a diet, and setting standards for yourself can be stressful. Go at a pace of making change that works for you and if you slip-up, no stress. There is tomorrow and the next, wide open for you to be successful with this goal.

Overall some suggestions of transitioning to a paleo diet is to be sure to get good fats (coconut oil, avocado, grass fed butter, etc) in along with some solid protein sources, such as wild fish, grass fed meat, free range, organic eggs. Fill up on vegetables and some fruit. The amount of fat recommended is likely more than you have been eating. Do not be afraid of fat  it is good for you, good for weight loss and good for your baby.

Cheers to you and good health,



Time to Log My Food Intake

Guess what I did this morning? I hopped on the scale, and, as suspected was not pleased with the number I saw. Most definately though, weight does not define who we are and the number onthe scale does not tell a full story. There are other measures to take into consideration when assessing your weight/composition. However, I know I have been much more stressed in the last 8 months, than I think ever in my life and I have been getting a little too comfortable with winter laziness and meals. Perfection is not the goal, but I want to weigh in a little lighter and feel more energetic as the season turns.  

So what is my plan? I will note my daily food intake and assess if it is enough nutrition for my needs. I also want to step up my movement, while keeping a nice variety of strength training, high intense cardio and low intense excercise (i.e. walking!). I will intend to take one day at a time and reassess in 4 weeks. Until then, have a look at what I ate yesterday.

Breakfast: 2 eggs, sliced button mushrooms and 1 large piece of free-range pork bacon. English breakfast tea and then a coffee at the office, which I regretted come bedtime.

Lunch: headed to a local cafe with my co-worker and had pan-fried white fish and Caesar salad.

Snack: 1 fresh date. I LOVE dates.

Dinner: lemon butter, baked fish with sweet potato.

Snack: coconut yogurt with seed mix (chia seeds, flax seeds, pumpkin seeds) and cocoa nibs.

Food for Thought: Seaweed

Do you ever come across the situation of going for sushi, buying sashimi (nice option to avoid rice) and still desire something else to fill your plate and appetite? If you can relate to the above occasion or have an interest in knowing the awesome health benefits of seaweed, keep reading.

Nutrients Composition:

  • vitamins A (beta carotene)
  • vitamin C
  • potassium
  • iron
  • calcium
  • iodine (good for thyroid health)
  • magnesium
  • vitamin B-12 – which is not often found in vegetables, i.e. this is a great option if you are a low or meatless eater.

Seaweed Benefits:

  • As one of the most mineral and vitamin dense vegetables, you can nourish your body with less
  • literature suggests that seaweed can assist in detoxing, removing heavy metals from the intestines
  • prevents some cancers
  • lowers cholesterol
  • increases sexual desire
  • support the thyroid
  • lower blood pressure
  • treat anemia

The research on seaweed is young and in my opinion can use more exploration, but the above conclusions are surely not a shabby start.

Ways to Eat Seaweed:

  • soups, such as miso soups
  • salads, for example, cut up some nori (sushi wrappers) to mix in a  salad
  • side dishes
  • condiment, add some kelp seaweed to a smoothie
Where to Find:
Seaweed can be found in most specialty stores or oriental grocers.

First Comes Love, Then Comes Weight Gain

The other night I was out to dinner with a friend and we were catching up on the essentials – work, travel, family, boys, etc, and at one point of the conversation I got stuck on the thought that boys are making us lovely ladies fat! My friend continued that she has gained a few unwanted “lbs” and she is determined it’s becuase of her boyfriends unhealthly habits.

I had to stop her in tracks because no matter how healthy or unhealthy your loved one is (male or female), there is the challenge of gaining weight. A study in the Journal of Economics and Human Biology examined data from 12,000 men and women ages 18 to mid-40s and compared BMIs of singletons to husbands and wives and found married men had an increased BMI by 1.5% above what they would naturally gain as they aged, and the women jumped up by 2%. Are you surprised with my friends’ comment and with what this 2008 study found? I am not.

I love my boyfriend to death and regardless of his love for pizza, we in the big picture have a pretty active and healthy lifestyle. However, with our relationship we have plenty of social obligations, dinner dates, making meals together and the basic desire of just wanting to hang out. Overall, relationships take time and the time spent together maybe replacing the time you used to spend running errands, shopping, hitting the gym for longer sessions and/or other active activities. The combination of of more socializing/eating out/eating more and a aging/slowing metabolism, brings on a true weight management challenge.

Another study published in Obesity looked at 1,200 plus young adults, 18-27 years of age, who were married, living together or dating. Consistent with the first study mentioned in this post, the married couples gained the most weight. They were three times more likely to both be obese, whereas the cohabiting couples had close to double the risk and guess who the thinnest were? The dating individuals of course. BUT the gainer doesn’t mean it is you or has to be you.

I am not trying to stear you into thinking you have to be single to whittle your middle. Yet, be aware of what you are eating and doing (or not doing).  When you make dinner together, serve the plates and put the leftovers away. Watch portions, partake in activities in place of couch time and find a happy healthy medium.

Relationships as well as weight loss takes work, but make sure you enjoy the ride on a healthy note.

Cheers to good health and have a healthy and fit day!

Want to lose weight? Eat Mindfully.

In a new research articlein this month’s Journal of the American Dietetic Association, Dr. Alan Kristal and colleagues found that people who eat mindfully (defined as those were aware of why they ate and stopped eating when full) are less likely to be obese.

Kristal and colleagues ended up with 5 factors, or categories, of behaviors that were thought to comprise mindful eating. They were:

Disinhibition – this involves noticing when you are full and how much you eat. Negative examples would be agreeing to the following statements: “If there’s good food at a party, I’ll continue eating even after I’m full.” or “When I’m at a restaurant, I can tell when the portion I’ve been served is too large for me.”

Awareness – paying attention and appreciating the food you are eating. For instances, agreeing with the statement that “I taste every bite of food that I eat.” or “I notice when foods and drinks are too sweet.”

External cues – being aware of how situations trigger cravings or influence you to eat more. The researchers measured this based on peoples agreement with statements such as “I notice when just going into a movie theater makes me want to eat candy or popcorn.” or “I recognize when food advertisements make me want to eat.”

Emotional responses – do you eat for emotional reasons? would you say that “When I’m sad I eat to feel better.” or “When I’m feeling stressed at work I’ll go find something to eat.”

Distraction – this last category is another indicator of how much you pay attention to the eating process. For example, how much would you agree that “I think about things I need to do while I am eating.” or “I eat so quickly that I don’t taste what I’m eating.”

Some of the ideas I take away from this are means to reconnect with my body and my food during the eating process, including:

Eat enough but not more – Learn how much food I need to eat in order to be satiated or satisfied, but not so much as to be full. Be aware of what being full feels like and do not eat beyond that point.

Love my food – Look at it, smell it, savor it. Enjoy every moment of eating it and take my time.

Don’t be seduced – Be aware that I can be influenced by things such as advertisements, being at a party, or being at a restaurants. Take the time to notice if I am truly hungry or just being triggered to crave food because of my circumstances.

Don’t feed the feelings – Don’t just eat because of how I feel. Eating a candy bar will not make my stress go away. Moods are impermanent and will pass. Just be patient.

Just eat – Focus on eating when I am eating. Clear my mind and be present with my food.

Reference click here

Have a healthy and fit day!

Tipping the Scale in My Favor

I am participating in a Biggest Losers Couples Challenge (BLCC) and I must say it is motivating! If you are having a hard time committing to a weight loss plan, then get a group together, pick a day to weigh in and collect money so there can be an incentive to stay inspired. My BLCC group consists of 22 people and we have a Google doc where we upload our numbers weekly. My first weigh in for the match was pleasing, I lost 2.5 pounds. Since then, that darn number has not moved. Am I frustrated? Not really. I know I have been cutting corners due to stress, lack of sleep, traveling and more. So as I look forward to the week ahead of me, I know exactly what I need to pay attention to and changes that need to be made.

This is a sample of what I will be focusing on foe the next seven days:

  • When I sense stress coming at work, home, etc, I need to step back and relax, breath and move on. (Easier said than done, right?!)
  • I need to drink a certain quantity of water. Before I was just drinking water when I was thirsty, but now I need to step it up a notch and set goals.
  • I need to really push myself during my workouts. Not every day but more often than I have in the last two weeks.
  • I need savor my treats. I have been doing better but when I have a meal or treat I really like, I eat it way too fast!
  • I need to sometimes skip dessert. I was for awhile going cold turkey and not touching anything too indulgent but in the last two weeks I have been eating desserts but in smaller portions. Treats included: mini Twix bars and mini Snickers, etc. I get these candies at work, which is awesome, but I don’t love them. What I need to do for the next week is buy some delicious dark chocolate and have one square every other day, or so.
  • I NEED to start taking my lunch break and walk outside for 15 minutes or so. Breaks are good and can even help me focus in my work more but it’s tough to initially step away.

I will work my hardest and stay positive. I will post again on my BLCC challenges next Wednesday and I hope to bring good news. Wish me luck!

Have a healthy and fit day!