“Why on earth should I try to be more dry?” said this chick who was the social chair in college, who started a wine club in our neighborhood last year and not long ago I had ambitions to become a sommelier. In fact, a few of my favorite memories exist in Australia’s wine country when we lived there in 2011.
If I suggested this even a year ago, it would be blasphemy. I remember attempting a sober month with my husband in February (yes, the shortest month of the year) and I felt like it was silly as I have a number of other restrictions in my life as someone with an autoimmune disease, type 1 diabetes, where I fair best on a low carbohydrate diet, thus a gluten and dairy-free diet. Take away my wine? Crazy!
But after being a little more sober curious about it, I’ve come to realize, drinking less alcohol is actually a very powerful way to practice self-care with respect to my personal growth, business goals, and health. So in the end, there are few cons with less alcohol in my life.
Replacing the time and money I would put into wine, etc, I will repurpose my energy to do better things. Explore why you can view social drinking in a new light and moderate your drinks to serve you. Life is about pleasure and perhaps sobriety isn’t the need, but is less in fact more?
I won’t list scare tactics on alcohol, yet, I will recommend having fun with this alcohol money tracker, from finder.com. It’s quite an eye-opening calculator and perhaps inspiring.
Kelly Schmidt is working to fundraise for a purpose.
“I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes on my 8th birthday in second grade,” she told 10TV’s Angela An.
That was in 1991, when according to Kelly’s website, she learned the power of “food is thy medicine.”
But it wasn’t until Kelly’s senior year in high school when she says she found a new purpose: to make living with type 1 diabetes better for everyone affected by the disease. She is now a registered dietitian, speaker, author, and wellness coach.
Her goal is to guide clients with type 1 diabetes on how to live a life where diabetes is less hard.
She is hosting an invite-only pig roast she hopes to turn into a mini-fundraiser “to make this disease less hard and nonexistent.”
Kelly, who is also a JDRF Board member, said this is not just a mission for her — Kelly’s father also has type 1 diabetes.
JDRF Central Ohio will also hold it’s annual One Walk on Sunday, Sept. 29 at the CAS campus at 2540 Olentangy River Road. Check in begins at 9 a.m. with the one-mile walk starting at 10:30 a.m.
The goal of the event is to raise more than $600,000 for juvenile diabetes research.
Hell yes to October! Not only is it one of the most health-focused months, but it kicks off the last quarter of the year and an opportunity to create health, personal growth, and wellness goals. This is my first year to lead my free program the Last 90-Days of Being Unapologetically Healthy and this entails learning to advocate your needs in nutrition, energy, and more.
Before we dive in, think about adopting the following…
Be curious. What areas in your life can you focus on to create change to be a better, calmer, more refreshed person? Whose help do you need? What resources do you need to review? What questions do you need to ask? I create the most personal growth and change, when I explore the above and ask myself the right questions.
Be selfish. If something is not a Hell Yes! Then, I’m sorry, tell them no.
Sleep. Seriously. It’s the secret sauce of health, and if you sleep enough, you will eat less, think more clearly and communicate better in the relationships that need you the most. Go to bed.
Drink less. Have you ever been sober curious as to where and what you would do with the time, energy and money you spend on alcohol? For fun, here is a calculator to play around with. Stay-tune I will flesh this topic out more in the coming weeks.
Drink more. Water. Hydration is one of the easiest and cheapest ways to optimize your hormone function, insulin and health. Just don’t overdo it before bed.
Take your vitamins. And not just any vitamins. Make sure the vitamins you choose are 3rd party tested, for example, these ones, and that you are educated on what nutrients you need. As someone with an autoimmune disease, I take targeted supplements for my gut health (probiotic, L-glutamine), magnesium to improve blood sugar control and sleep/stress, B vitamins to fill nutrient gaps, improve mood and cravings and CBD. Do not assume you need what I take. If you need guidance, email me. I’ll help you identify some of your supplement needs.
Play. Block off time to block out your to-do list and calendar and get out there and play. My love just gifted us stand up paddle boards for our anniversary and that’s easily my happiest place on the planet right now. You don’t need to live by an ocean to enjoy some water. I head to Hoover Dam in Westerville, OH every weekend I can.
Let go. Let go of the things that are weighing you do, and this may entail forgiving someone and or forgiving yourself.
Eat well. We don’t need to strive for perfection, but more so, progress. Above all, look at your poop. Pay attention to how food makes you feel, what your bowels look like and make sure you go daily. Notice what foods spike your blood sugar. The foods I am most sensitive to (garbanzo beans, gluten, and sweet potatoes), cause the most insulin resistance and blood sugar swings. I am not alone in the observation either, as it’s supported in the research. Check out Robb Wolf’s book, Wired to Eat, to learn more.
Ask. Ask questions so you can get the best care. This is asking questions when you are out to eat (omit standard dressings to avoid canola oil, what’s gluten-free, etc), as well as, asking questions in your community from how to parent your best, dose insulin, meal plan and more.
Spend time with the right peeps. Surround yourself with those who help you be the best version of yourself. Relationships change over our lifetime and some friendships are everlasting and others aren’t. It’s okay that some aren’t.
Value the lessons in your (blood sugar) mistakes. – Mistakes are okay; they’re the stepping-stones of progress. Appreciate the journey of learning, growing and improving.
Be grateful. Practice gratitude daily. I do this at night before I fall asleep. Last night I was grateful for insulin, my friends and my type 1 community.
Be generous. This was a resolution for me in 2019, and indeed a year I’ve been absolutely the most generous with my time, money and talents. The reward can’t be put into words. Be generous, perform random acts of kindness, pay it forward. You won’t regret it.
Compete. Compete with an earlier version of yourself. In my last 90 day program, I help you with a plan to provide you structure, leading to growth and success. I am excited for you to create some magic. Remember, the journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.
I’ve been working with David, then Stacey for the last year and I believe we can all benefit from their health story and ongoing journey. Enjoy!
Hi! I’m Stacey Jones (S), a smiling 40-year-old, with a history of celiac disses (diagnosed in 2015) and bottomless relationship with dieting since my teens. I spend my daytime hours working from home, aka access to the kitchen whenever I want it, for a higher education technology company, and a year ago, I took the leap, I choose me and found I was ready for true change and sought help from a professional, Kelly.
Hello, my name isDavid Ward (D), I’m 40 years old as well. I spend most of my time during the day as a service delivery manager of an IT company and serve in the Ohio Army National Guard. Growing up I was made to eat everything on my plate. My mother God bless her, cooked like she was feeding a platoon when was just me and my brother. I continued this eating habit into adulthood.
How has your health goal evolved with your work with Kelly?
S: A year before I actually worked with Kelly, I bought supplements from Kelly (I highly recommend doing a detox, while it’s hard, it’s very helpful). After seeing the success David was having working with Kelly, I knew there was something to explore.
My starting goal was to focus on losing belly fat and while it hasn’t necessarily changed, because it’s the most inflammatory place to hold extra weight, I have a more whole-body focus now. I used to just focus on calories and portions, I have broadened my scope much wider. I listen to hunger cues, manipulate my hunger with balanced meals, fasting, etc, exercise, giving myself grace, and work on the negative self-talk I’ve had for years around food.
D: I started with Kelly because I needed help in losing/maintaining my weight to stay within Army standards as I was unable to workout due to a herniated disc in October 2018. I wanted to change my eating habits and needed guidance on how to do it beyond a dieting/deprivation mindset. Now my goal is to maintain the level of wellness and lean body mass I’ve achieved and the healthy habits I learned so far. When I started this journey to a better life, my weight was 230 lbs. at 29 percent body fat, now I’m at 210 lbs. and I’m at 21 percent. Thanks, Kelly!
What is one lesson from Kelly’s work that has had a large impact on your progress and worth sharing with others?
S: Give yourself grace instead of shaming yourself. This was and is HUGE for me.
D: Recognize when I’m full, in the past I would eat so fast that I didn’t give my body time to let me know that I was full. Now I purposely slow down and enjoy my food, and when I’m full I’m done eating.
What is your outlook on your health now compared to the start?
S: I can figure it out if I just don’t quit. In fact, this is almost an affirmation I keep in mind daily. I can lose weight without having to count a single calorie (because we all grow up thinking you HAVE to count calories) and enjoy the process as well.
D: I never thought I would be at the weight I’m at now, I am 50 pounds less than my senior year of high school weight. After years of struggling, I would see improvement but gain the weight back. Now I live a more healthy lifestyle without even trying, having regular monthly meetings with Kelly has kept me accountable. Side note, I still find enjoyment when I go out to eat and want to have alcohol. I have found a balance with Kelly, which are fueling my results.
What is one habit that you’ve adopted that is helping your progress?
S: Intermittent fasting, balancing meals with fat, protein and complex carbs, thinking about insulin response from food and sugar, and having confidence I can continue on this path.
D: Intermediate fasting and initially counting macros, also knowing I’m not starving myself to lose weight. It’s ironic how helpful it is to hydrate properly. Thirst is often mistaken for hunger.
What advice would you give someone else who wants to lose weight and become healthier?
S: It’s all about making small changes that add up to big changes in the long run. And meeting yourself where you are at.
D: I recommend anyone who is struggling like I was, to take the time and get the help, there’s more to living a healthy lifestyle than going to the gym. Having someone to talk about your health needs and being able to coach you to not only meet your goals but maintain them is essential.
Is there anything better than personal growth? What if you used these last 90 days to ramp up to the best year of your life? Commit to these last 90 days, starting in October, to being UNAPOLOGETIC about making the best choices for your health, energy, happiness, and growth. If you get tired, learn to rest, not quit.
I am excited to see what magic can happen, when I shift my focus on small daily actions, to evolve and grow into the best version of myself springboarding myself into 2020!
90 Day Details
Each week Kelly will provide support and tools in her Sunday morning email. This may often include a weekly challenge (it’ll be fun!)
Each month has a theme…
October focuses on Self-Care & Self-Discipline
November focuses on Detox & Declutter
December focuses on Nourishment & Movement
If you blow off the commitment level/goal you set for yourself, decide on a daily donation you are willing to pay to support Kelly towards finding a cure for Type 1 Diabetes in her lifetime (JDRF research)
Be part of the community and share the love on social media using #KSW90Days
If you get tired, learn to rest, not quit.
Join in even if it’s the middle of the month or the end of the program
Honestly, I have some room for improvement and I’m truly excited to take the time before 2020 to focus on small daily actions that can help me feel my best, look my best, inside and out, and in the end, grow into the best version of myself.
I once had an intern tell me I was a lot like a Tiger Mom and at first, I wasn’t sure how to take it. After thinking about it, it makes sense. I have a lot of faith in people, and I can see the potential we can all amount to.
Organizing a program that focuses on making good, healthy choices, in a season of celebrations, can be viewed as impossible, or it can be spun into a season of focus and structure and accomplishing whatever we put our mind to.
Now, are you ready to advocate your needs? Are you ready to be unapologetic about making a healthier choice for you? Let’s strive, challenge, change and grow into the best person you are meant to be!
PS, join at any point. You don’t have to begin on October 1. Come in and join at any time and honor, mentally, where you are. Now, why should you join?
How you ever felt refreshed by the end of the holiday season?
Have you ever been upset by holiday weight gain?
Have you ever wished you saved more money by New Year’s?
Have you ever been proud of how much or how little alcohol you consumed through the holidays?
Have you ever felt your strongest by the end of the year?
Have you ever felt you best by New Year’s?
Make this year different by having small, realistic, weekly goals, to change how you’d answer the questions above.
When Do We Start? Starting with September 29th’s Sunday with Kelly Newsletter, you will get the materials you need to begin this journey. Make note, be ready to commit, and know it’s worth doing.
Each month will have a theme, an accountability checklist and weekly support from Kelly’s Sunday Newsletter.
Summer is nearly gone at the advent of school starting next week. I keep thinking of this phrase as I will be sending my oldest off to kindergarten (tear) on Thursday.
“I’ve learned that life is like a roll of toilet paper. The closer it gets to the end, the faster it goes.”
Funny, right? But silly stupid true. Where did summer go?
Speaking of time, this week I’m highlighting ways to save time in the kitchen in the morning.
Make waffles from Birch Blenders mixes in bulk and store them in a Ziplock freezer bag until they are ready to be toasted/eaten. Bonus tip, add a few scoops of collagen peptides to the batter (+ a tbsp of avocado oil) to increase the protein content, satiety and brain-boosting amino acids for learning.
Banana Pancakes: mash 1 small banana with 2 eggs and make a pancake or 2 in a skillet like you would traditional batter.
Chia Seed Pudding: mixing 1 part chia seeds with 4 parts liquid. Example: 1/4 cup chia seeds with 1 cup of coconut milk. Add spices and sweetener to your liking. Make multiple of these ahead in mini mason jars.
Chicken Tacos. While the slow-cooker is out, make some tacos the following night. Add frozen (or fresh) chicken breast or tenderloins to a slow-cooker on high, allow to cook for 6-8 hours with a jar of salsa. My go-to? Salsa verde. We love our chicken tacos w/ a purple cabbage leaf for the “taco shell,” black beans and some sour cream or guac.
Salmon Burgers + Roasted Veg. If my hubs is home, I’ll have him fire up the grill to make the wild salmon Kirkland burgers (look for any salmon burgers that are made with wild, not farmed, salmon), but if he isn’t, to save time, I bake 4-6 burgers in my toaster oven. Leftovers are a blessing. I also make multiple trays of veg on the weekend, like the pic above, which happens to be 100% from my garden. I use ample amounts of avocado oil, cook at 350F for 30 minutes and douse the vegetables in the Unami spice from Trader Joe’s.
Insulin resistance refers to a condition in which cells in the body no longer respond properly to insulin. This has a huge impact on health because of the role that this anabolic hormone plays in glucose metabolism. With insulin resistance, cells, including those in the liver and body fat, begin to ‘resist’ signals sent by insulin. This means that they stop absorbing glucose from the blood to use it as the main fuel source. As a result, blood sugar levels start to rise, causing a variety of health risks, the best known of which is diabetes. However, failing to manage the condition effectively can do more damage than you realize. Here are some of the major risks of prolonged insulin resistance.
Type 2 Diabetes
The pancreas which produces insulin, respond to resistance by increasing production of the hormone. With prolonged insulin resistance, the amount of insulin needed to regulate blood sugar levels keeps rising. In time, the pancreas suffers from fatigue and cannot meet the demands for insulin. This leads to the onset of prediabetes and diabetes. Insulin resistance is regarded as a major predictor of type-2 diabetes, with most patients going on to develop the condition within the next 10-20 years.
In many cases, prolonged insulin resistance makes you more likely to develop high cholesterol levels. More specifically, it alters systemic lipid metabolism, resulting in higher than normal levels of plasma triglycerides, while levels of high-density lipoprotein (the good cholesterol) start to fall. The increase in blood cholesterol levels that is commonly observed with insulin resistance may be caused by increased synthesis of very-low-density lipoprotein in the liver.
Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease
Although the non-alcoholic fatty liver disease can have various causes, such as a high-fat diet and obesity, insulin resistance is regarded as an important contributor. The condition can increase fat accumulation in the liver by increasing the delivery of free fatty acid and through hyperinsulinemia – increased insulin production. In fact, insulin resistance is observed in almost all cases of fatty liver disease. In some cases, this can even lead to the development of steatohepatitis.
You develop dark skin patches
Prolonged insulin resistance leads to an increase in insulin production over time and this can cause an accumulation of insulin within skin cells themselves. This manifests in visible skin changes, with darkened patches of skin towards the back of the neck, elbows, knees, groins, knuckles, and armpits. This skin condition is described as acanthosis nigricans. There is no known cure for the condition, but the management of insulin resistance can help to prevent it or reduce the severity of discoloration and darkening.
Heart Attack & Stroke
When not managed in a timely manner, insulin resistance can significantly raise the risk of heart failure and strokes. Aside from the fact that reduced insulin sensitivity and increased blood sugar damages cells, including blood vessels, insulin resistance also adversely affects lipid levels. All of this encourages the buildup of arterial plaque, restricting or even obstructing blood flow. In time, this damages the heart itself. Not surprisingly, insulin resistance is associated with a 50% higher risk of heart failure and strokes.
Cancer is not something that most of us associated with insulin resistance, but research suggests that there may be a connection. Prolonged insulin resistance and metabolic syndrome may increase the risk of various types of cancer, including breast, bladder, colon, pancreatic, and uterine cancers. It is believed that high insulin levels facilitate tumor growth and also impair the body’s natural defense against malignant cells.
Early Onset Dementia
Although the connection between prolonged insulin resistance and dementia is not clearly understood, studies do suggest that insulin resistance raises the risk. One mechanism is vascular dementia, in which blood vessel damage from insulin resistance leads to reduced blood flow to the brain. Researchers are still investigating the role of insulin resistance in memory function decline and the increased risk of conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease.
How to Cope with Insulin Resistance
In addition to the risks highlighted above, insulin resistance is also connected to a higher risk of kidney disease, high uric acid levels or gout, and PCOS. Fortunately, effective and early management of insulin resistance can counter these risks. Dietary and lifestyle changes to lose weight and get better sleep can help improve insulin sensitivity significantly. In fact, a study that appeared in the International Journal of Obesity, found that 10% of weight loss through diet and exercise could improve insulin sensitivity by 80%. Similarly, sleep deprivation has also been shown to raise insulin resistance. Findings like these highlight the importance of comprehensive lifestyle changes to tackle insulin resistance.
I’ve been working with Alex for the better half of the last 3 years. Alex has come a long way and I believe his story can inspire others and therefore I’m highlighting his experience with you.
Alex, introduce yourself: Alex: I was born in Kiev, Ukraine. I was diagnosed wit type 1 diabetes in 1992, at 14. Shortly after the diagnosis, my family and I immigrated to Chicago. After decades of unsuccessful health management, I am finally happy where I am and manage my type 1 with multiple daily injections.
What lead you to work with Kelly?
Alex: After unsuccessful endocrinologist appointments, I was very unhappy with the level of service I was receiving. My wife did some research and found Kelly, whose approach was holistic and realistic and seemed to align very closely to our way of life.
Stacie: When Alex and I were first married, we ate pizza and pasta and didn’t think twice about it. With time his A1c was 8% or close to, and so I took to the internet to find a health coach who could help him (and us) through an early generation of new diabetes tech, including CGMs. I didn’t know that coaching over FaceTime would be a thing but it worked and works really well.
Kelly has been keeping Alex in the 6’s% for his A1C, but focusing on overall blood sugar control and not just a lab. Kelly is the perfect recipe of holistic/modern/realistic while being as understanding as she is data-aware and willing to share the latest news. I think health coaching is THE WAY to maintain optimal health, especially with the roller coaster of diabetes.
Alex, what was your health status when you first began working together?
Alex: My A1c prior to working with Kelly has always been around 8%. Working with Kelly, I was able to get my A1c down to 6.5. I am able to enjoy foods I really love, such as apples, and still maintain good blood glucose average.
What are your biggest senses of accomplishment with type 1?
Alex: My A1c is by far the biggest accomplishment, as it is the lowest it has ever been. I am a lot more connected to my body’s reaction to elevated or low blood sugar. I am able to explain the number on my blood glucose monitor and understand the reasons for what it is. High and low blood sugar, as I now know, involves much more than what we eat. Kelly has taught me 40+ variables to keep in mind as I manage my diabetes day-to-day.
Stacie: I am proud that I have used all of our available resources to optimize my husband’s health, and that desire to grow has carried over into my own health goals (I will share more next week!). I’m proud Alex and I are working together for each others health, and for our girls’ health. Working in tandem toward achieving our health goals sets a solid example for our daughters which gives me the ultimate parental joy.
Alex, what are some of the biggest health challenges you face, and what solutions have been strategized to overcome them?
Alex: My biggest challenge is controlling urges to eat things I am not supposed to, i.e. granola bars, etc without taking insulin far enough in advance (pre-bolus), and thinking that I’ll be able to recover from the carb intake. One solution, which has been very successful, is to be prepared: I have approved foods on hand that can replace foods that have not approved or have not worked well for my blood sugar (everyone is different). I am in the process of getting a CGM which will help in controlling the spikes and learning my type 1 diabetes more intimately.
Stacie: As a wife of a t1d, my biggest challenge is owning meals that we ALL can love—my husband, baby, 3-year-old and 5 years old, and I.
What are a few of the top tips you’ve learned from your work with Kelly?
Alex: Every meal should consist of combo of carbs (varying from the time of the day), fats, and protein. A good alcoholic beverage to consume is tequila and I am more resistant to insulin at night.
Be aware of your hormones, give yourself grace and, “Be bold with insulin” says Kelly and I repeat.
What is next for you in your health?
Alex: Getting Dexcom 6, going through another 10-Day Cleanse with Kelly, and finding ways to be more connected to my body. Kelly has been a life-changer for me. More than just a dietitian, she has become a true life coach. Her help has been tremendous and she’s amazing to work with. Anytime I hear that someone is struggling with controlling their blood sugar or their diet, I always refer them to Kelly.
Stacie: Aww. I love that my husband said he wanted to be connected to his body. Alex is an inspiration for me to get MOVING!
Same. Kelly is THE BEST. THE. BEST. And Kelly would know best— diabetes is a cross-country trek without a break. You hit rainstorms and drizzle and golf ball-sized hail and spring rain after trying to control a bobsled down the dry side of a mountain. I am overwhelmed just thinking about it— but my husband manages a soft pad landing for his fickle blood sugar every day while working a full-time job, parenting, husbanding, cycling, soccering and so on. With Kelly on our team, I feel like we have a fighting chance of the wheels not coming off during this wild ride called life.
Add 2 cups of cauli rice in a saucepan, add in 1 tbsp of coconut oil, a touch of water to help the cauli cook down + spices (cinnamon, sea salt), stir consistently. Add in stevia drops (a few more than a smoothie as it will cut the bitterness out of the cauli) + stir in collagen or protein powder.Stir the above consistently for 4 minutes. Add in an egg and stir for a final 4 minutes.Expect to cook for 8 minutes in total.