A November 2016 article published by CNN reported how in just 10 days you can see a dramatic improvement by reducing sugar intake. In fact, Dr. Robert Lustig and his team showed how 43 children reduced sugar over a 10 day span and decreased triglyceride levels, LDL (bad cholesterol) and blood pressure levels. There is no reason that this study done with children can't also relate to adults as well. It is remarkable what you can do in such a short amount of time!
Whether you are looking for more energy to fuel your busy days or looking to lose a couple pounds, the benefits of completing a sugar detox are truly worth while. My programs all include a slow sugar detox process eating certain foods, herbs, and spices.
WHY COMPLETE A SUGAR DETOX?
After growing up a sugar addict as a child all the way until my late 20’s, I am able to connect the dots as to why I felt the way I did. I grew up with anxious thoughts, anxiety, feelings of nervousness, sleepless nights, and even panic disorder. Which completely ended when my new journey began as a wellness coach 5 years ago. We now have the resources that show us; sugar is eight times more addictive than cocaine or heroine. I realize I was truly under the wings of a “sugar addict”
Weight loss and energy gain are two very real benefits that I discovered, of completing a sugar detox. By having better control over your blood sugar levels you can eliminate the plateaus in energy levels throughout the day and start to lose weight without the focus being on calories. Many and that this type of weight loss is more permanent than constantly focusing on counting how much food you are eating. The focus is on eating smarter for your health, not necessarily less.
Sugar creates inflammation throughout the whole body and chronic infections can rob you of your full potential, which is where I was. Chronic inflammation is another reason why you may be carrying around excess weight that won't come off no matter what you do. With less inflammation you will start to see a lift in mood, your complexion will become brighter, and even the breakdown of collagen that can cause wrinkles will slow down.
With less inflammation you will see a big improvement in gut health as well. Sugar breeds all sorts of bad bacteria in your gut and since we now know that the gut is considered to be our second brain, it is so important to maintain a healthy gut. Much of our immune system is controlled in this area so it is no surprise that you can start to see symptoms such as irritable bowl, indigestion and upset stomach on a daily basis if you're eating too much sugar.
We all want to find a balance between feeling our best, finding our ideal weight and eating a diet that we can live with. One that doesn't rob us of a guilty pleasure here and there or cut out so many foods that it leaves you wondering if there is anything left that you CAN eat. A sugar detox is a great way to begin to eliminate problematic foods from your diet without drastically slashing calories or having a long list of foods to avoid taped to your refrigerator. That is never fun! With this program I want to provide you with a simple plan to follow so that you can start feeling your best and see how even small changes can create big results.
My sugar program is not just here to help you for a week and then leave you back where you started. The program is designed to help you make lifelong changes towards your best self. Throughout the rest of this guide I will provide you with the background information you need to become educated on the effects of sugar in your body. In the next guide in the program we will dive into the plan and show you how you can easily cut refined sugar out of your life in all the key areas.
HOW REFINED SUGAR AFFECTS YOUR BODY
How Your Body Reacts To High Levels Of Refined Sugar
- Chronic inflammation
- Premature aging excess sugar binding to collagen in the skin making it less elastic.
- Creation of free radicals
- Decrease in the ability of your pancreatic cells to produce insulin
- Increases risk of cancer
- Raises cholesterol
- Hair loss and tooth decay
- Breakouts and skin irritations
- Cardiovascular disease
- Creates an overly acidic environment in your digestive system that can lead to chronic inflammation. Don't forget, your gut is considered to be the second brain.
- Impairs liver function which can lead to breakouts and high blood pressure
- Affect mood swings, irritability, asthma and arthritis
In fact, sugar is more addictive than cocaine or Heroine.
When you consume sugar your body releases dopamine, a chemical messenger, that activates special areas within the brain that is responsible for reward and pleasure. Once this response is achieved your body is in a constant search to repeat that feeling. Ever heard of a sugar crash? The problem with eating refined sugar is the fact that it is acid forming in the body because it has been chemically stripped of its minerals. The natural minerals in whole foods are important for our body’s ability to process nutrients in food and to ultimately keep our bodies alkaline. Remember – a body in an alkaline state is primed to avoid disease and a myriad of other aliments. Also, a body with a healthy gut is a body functioning at it’s optimal best-inside and out!
Check out my Five or Ten Day Detox Plan Booklet under my detox and cleanses tab ! - A detox starter guide with specific foods to break away from sugar addiction!
FYI! Unfortunately, we are being fooled by our nutrition labels today. Not only on pre-packed foods, but also with the meat industry as well. I always teach my clients during the grocery store tour to read the labeling and understand the ingredients, as we see words we can't even pronounce. Chances are, these are chemicals and toxins that are hindering our health and the functions of our bodies.
I wanted to share these tips with you, so when shopping for your meats the next trip, you have the knowledge and tools to make the best choices.
Meat with unverified labels like these could have been (and likely was) raised on a factory farm and is not usually the best choice:
- Natural - No artificial ingredients or added color and it’s only minimally processed. May still have been given hormones, antibiotics, drugs, and raised on GMOs in a factory farm. This label doesn’t mean what it should and is essentially meaningless!
- Humanely Raised or Raised in a Humane Environment – The term “humane” is not properly regulated and there are no USDA standards. Brands like Simple Truth and Harvestland brands – have been caught raising their chickens on factory farms although they were labeled this way.
- No Added Hormones - No hormones were given during the animal’s lifetime, but they may have still been given antibiotics or other growth promoting drugs. This is a common label on poultry and pork, but it means absolutely nothing because the USDA does not allow hormones to be administered to poultry or pork anyway! This is a shady way to mislead customers.
- Raised Without Antibiotics - No antibiotics were given during the animal’s lifetime. May have still been administered hormones (if not poultry or pork) or other growth-promoting drugs such as ractopamine in turkey and may have been fed GMOs on a factory farm.
- Vegetarian Fed - Not fed any animal products. May have been fed grains, GMOs, antibiotics, or given growth hormones.
- Free Range - Animals had access to the outdoors, but it is possible that they never stepped outside. May have still been administered hormones, antibiotics, or other growth-promoting drugs such as ractopamine, and may have been fed GMOs on a factory farm.
- “Cage Free” on poultry - This label on poultry is misleading because only chickens raised for eggs are typically caged.
- Grass fed - Unless 3rd party certified (see below for more info), this term is not properly regulated and the USDA allows this term to be used on factory farmed meat. May have still been administered hormones, antibiotics, or other growth-promoting drugs such as ractopamine.
It sure would be nice if factory farmed meat had a big giant WARNING LABEL on it, but unfortunately, it doesn’t...
That’s why I prefer to obtain meat directly from local farms or sources I trust where they are transparent about their practices. Knowing the source of my meat gives me peace of mind that the animals truly had a “free-range” life and weren’t kept in a crate and pumped with antibiotics in some Big Ag operation. Ideally, I want all the meat I buy to come from a healthy, contented animal that grazed on an open, green pasture its whole life.
One of the best ways to do this is to connect online with farmer’s markets or use subscription-based Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) to purchase organic and grass-fed meat.
Yes, this meat may cost more than what you find in an average supermarket. But rather than judging the value of food in terms of dollars, think of its value in terms of nutrition – and your health. Toxins accumulate in animal tissue - we want the meat we eat to be as healthy as possible!
When shopping for meat in the supermarket, there are a few labels out there that are meaningful and 3rd party certified which tell you quite a bit about how the livestock was raised. Take some time to remember what these various labels below mean, so that you’ll recognize them when you see them!
Look for these labels to avoid factory farmed meat:
- Animal Welfare Approved - This 3rd-party certified label ensures that the animals were raised on sustainable pasture-based family farms that treat their animals humanely.
- American Grassfed Certified - A 3rd party certifying program that ensures meat and dairy comes only from animals that ate nothing but their mother’s milk and grass their whole lives, and that they didn’t come from a feedlot. No hormones or antibiotics are permitted.
- Global Animal Partnership (Only steps 4, 5 and 5+) - A 5-step animal welfare rating program that outlines specifics on how animals are cared for and raised. Steps 4, 5, and 5+ require access to pasture.
- USDA Certified Organic - This will help you avoid the worst factory-farmed meat, with exceptions. Sadly, organic meat may be raised in factory farm conditions and this label does not ensure they were raised much more humanely than conventional animals. Growth promoting drugs, hormones, antibiotics, and GMOs are prohibited from their food, and they are fed only organic food. They also must be given access to the outdoors.
When you’re dining out, ask your server where the restaurant purchases its meat. If the answer is something like Smithfield, Tyson or Perdue (instead of a small local farm), that indicates the meat is probably processed to the hilt. That’s why I often choose to eat vegan or vegetarian dishes at restaurants.
You will be more likely to find meat that wasn’t raised on a factory farm in natural food markets like Whole Foods Market, Earth Fare, Sprouts, etc., but you still need to check labels and ask questions.
I hope you find this helpful for you, as well as your family! If you would like a grocery store tour in person or a free 30-minute consult to discuss and receive all the important handouts such as eating with the season, produce, food-swaps and more. Plus, receive two E-Books on what toxins and chemicals to avoid please visit..
In Balance Health Coaches
Nutrition & Wellness
When it comes to being healthy and living your best life, exercise is only part of the equation. Chances are you’ve heard of the 80/20 ratio: 80 percent of your weight depends on your diet, not how much you exercise. Of course, a combination of healthy foods and regular sweat sessions is the best way to get in shape and stay in shape.
I follow a clean eating diet consisting of plants, vegetables and lean meats. I find that I feel my best when my meals include lots of fruits, veggies, seeds, nuts, and sprouted grains. However, I know that my lifestyle is not for everyone. The most important thing to remember is that it’s not what you eat, but what you don’t eat.
This is some of the best advice I’ve ever received, and it has changed the way I think about food. Below are some of my favorite tips for staying healthy and always performing at the top of my level. You’ve probably heard a few of these before, but it never hurts to remind ourselves.
“Let food be your medicine and medicine be your food.” - Hippocrates
Drink lots of water!
Water helps energize your muscles, clear your skin, and even satiates hunger. It’s good for your kidneys, your brain, and your bowels. Whenever I feel thirsty, I try to drink only water, pure green juices or kombucha, which is great for a healthy gut!
Eat a colorful and varied diet of whole, unrefined, and unprocessed foods.
What does that mean? If it grew in the ground, you can pronounce it, and if it had a mother, you can eat it. One of the easiest ways to follow this rule is to only shop from what you see on the perimeter of your grocery store. This is where you’ll find fresh produce, dairy, and organic meats.
Avoid processed sugars and white carbs or foods with a high glycemic index.
White bread, rice, and pasta are high in sugars and can have some serious negative impacts on your health. Luckily, there are tons of delicious whole grain substitutes for these products so you can avoid them altogether.
Avoid saturated fat and trans fats.
Substitute these fats with healthy, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. Say no to french fries and opt for a handful of almonds or a piece of live grain toast with a tablespoon of peanut butter. Switch out your milk chocolate for an ounce of dark chocolate after dinner.
Always combine complex carbohydrates (most fruits and veggies) with lean protein at every meal.
Pairing a protein and a complex carbohydrate is the most efficient way for your body to digest your food and convert it into energy and not fat.
Size matters - practice portion control!
One serving size of complex carbs like fruits and veggies is about two handfuls, and one serving of protein should fit in the palm of your hand. If you’re snacking on healthy fats, keep it small. A dozen almonds, an ounce of dark chocolate or a tablespoon or two of olive oil on your salad is all you need.
Eat for maximum nutrient density.
Avoid “empty” calories at all costs. That means no fast food, soda, snacks, cakes, and cookies. Opt for nutrient-dense foods like kale, seaweed, blueberries, and even dark chocolate. Quality calories fill you up faster, for longer, and help your body function like a machine.
Enjoy your food.
Food is supposed to be something you enjoy. Eating clean lets your body experience flavorful, hearty, and delicious wholesome food.
Eating healthy doesn’t need to be complicated.
Follow my tips and focus on incorporating a few healthy dishes into your life, then repeat the ones you love each week. You’ll see that with a few simple adjustments to your routine, eating well is easy.
What’s your favorite healthy eating tip? Share with me in the comments!
A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO GRATITUDE- April 2018
In difficult times, struggles or moments it can be it hard to see positive forces when obstacles are blaring and fears are looming. These are the best times to be not only grateful, but a time to find gratitude. Not grateful for what has us stuck, but appreciating what doesn't. Gratitude helps us see our situation in a way that can lessen panic and open up our thinking to new solutions. Especially during times of distress.
Thing is, people aren't hardwired to be grateful. And, like any skill worth having, gratitude requires practice. Dr. Robert Emmons, author of "Thanks! How Practicing Gratitude Can Make You Happier" shares a few steps with us..
Here are 3 steps to find recognition of your gratitude:
- Recognizing what we're grateful for
- Acknowledging it
- Appreciating it
Simple, right? And the benefits of practicing gratitude can be life altering.Gratitude puts situations into perspective.When we can see the good as well as the bad, it becomes more difficult to complain and stay stuck.Gratitude helps us realize what we have. The awareness of what we're grateful for can lessen our tendency to want more all the time.
Gratitude makes us happier. Gratitude strengthens relationships, improves health, reduces stress, and, in general, makes us happier. With Thanksgiving right around the corner I would like to take this opportunity to express my gratitude and thanksgiving for all of the the wonderful blessings in my life and that includes each and every one of you. Wishing you a holiday season that finds you surrounded by love and filled with inner peace.
Self-love and self-nourishment is the best medicine.
Why do we find it so hard to love and take care of ourselves?If one of our inner belief systems or thought patterns is "I am unworthy" then one of our outer effects will be procrastination. After all, procrastination is one way to keep us from being who we want to be. Then we can berate ourselves again for procrastinating and prove to ourselves that we really are unworthy of living a healthy vibrant life. How sad?
When the self-criticism intensifies we reach for our bad habits. We might stuff our faces with ice cream and chocolate or burgers and fries and gulp down way too many glasses of wine trying to bury the truth about us. This is actually a form of hiding a "safe place."
How do we feel then? Even worse and now we have more ammunition to berate our beautiful selves further. Sound familiar?When you berate yourself when you scold yourself and when you beat yourself up, whom do you think you're treating this way. Would you say the things you say to yourself to your best friend?
When the crazy thoughts come in, catch your thoughts and say STOP and then say to yourself, "I love myself, and I am worthy of living my best life right now." Repetitive positive thoughts that we fed our brain, will in-turn feed your bodies chemistry.
Our inner thoughts form your character, how you operate in this world, how far you travel mentally, physically and spiritually. All your actions proceed from thoughts. Our inner thoughts will always be a reflection of your outer circumstances.
Find your inner strength and peace in the upcoming Holiday Seasons, it's the time of sharing, giving, honoring, loving not only other but ourselves, mind and body. I would love to share with you some of my wonderful healthy holiday recipes for you and your family to enjoy. May your holiday's be filled with love, nourishment and blessings!
"Our Greatest Health is Wealth!"
How to Make Your Dreams Come True in 2018
The stories are everywhere: always uplifting, and always inspiring:
- A woman who beat stage 3 breast cancer using food as medicine
- A Veteran who completed a triathlon after losing both legs
- Climbing Mount Everest in 10 hrs. and 56 min.
Every day people just like you go out into the world and make their dreams come true. They did it. Why not you? You’re no different than any of these successful individuals.
Why Doesn’t Your Dream Come True?
Do you find yourself too preoccupied with the everyday hustle and bustle? Do you work hard enough at achieving your dreams? Do you find excuses and let obstacles stand in your way?
Live the Life of Your Dreams
“When you start living the life of your dreams, there will always be obstacles, doubters, mistakes and setbacks along the way. But with hard work, perseverance, and self-belief there is no limit to what you can achieve.”
― Roy T. Bennett, The Light in the Heart
Could a Plan Help?
The easiest way to turn a dream into reality is one step at a time:
- Choose one thing to get done., a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.
- Identify what scares you most. Ask yourself: What’s the worst thing that could happen if I face this fear? Write down the worst-case scenario, and also write how you would confront it.
- Identify a small reward for yourself once you’ve accomplished that activity.
- Then just do it. Complete and check that task off your list.
- Now treat yourself to the reward: rejoice, and celebrate!
Repeat the above steps as many times as necessary and watch yourself get happier, healthier, and grow with your dreams by pursuing what you love.
Get even healthier!
Would you like support in making your health dreams come true? Let’s talk! Schedule an initial complimentary consultation with me today—or pass this offer on to someone you care about!
Cheers To Happy, Healthy, Holidays!!
'Tis the season! Well here we are once again, preparing for yet another year of holiday cheer! Don't you just love this time of year; it's so warm and nourishing on the inside. The holidays are such a joyous time of year as we spend it with family and friends. We also get to enjoy many of the great offerings these special days can bring us. This time of year we find ourselves offering more and being more giving. We find ourselves being more compassionate and sharing with others; we may feel less irritable and frustrated, even a sense of lightness in our mind, body and hearts. Wouldn't it be awesome if you could feel this way all year round? It may be something you may want to practice this new year. These feelings are feelings of less stress, anxiety, more gratitude and generosity. Below are some helpful and healthy tips to practice. I hope you find them helpful!
Practice of generosity healthy habits:
- Did you know your physical health impacts your mental health? Create movement and exercise.
- In return our mental health impacts your physical health. Start thinking "positive"
- The interaction between the mind and the body is so pervasive, it’s difficult to say which one is influencing which. If it's all connected, then it's all important right? Create change!
- The way to total health is through Complete Generosity: it's about taking care of your mind, your body, and your spirit as well as finding inner peace and gratitude.
- Be aware, be mindful and generous to your body. When you nourish your body with physical activity, good rich/vibrant foods, water, and sleep, you will feel more energy and be able to meet life's daily challenges in a more mindful manner.
- Be generous to your mind, you care for your mental and emotional health so you feel less stress, more peacefulness, and experience greater focus.
- Be generous to your spirit, you connect with yourself and others in meaningful way.
I always say small steps will lead you to great success! Receptive small steps will become habits. We all have those and some may not be so good. When something is a habit, you don't have to think about it. You just do it. You don't talk yourself out of brushing your teeth. You don't forget to have your morning cup of coffee or tea. Those things happen automatically and unconsciously because they're habits. Remember you can achieve that same response with any desired thought, feeling, or behavior.
I hope you find this generosity list helpful, and you practice these tips. As they are crucial to living a sustainable healthy lifestyle inside and out. Mind, Body and Spirit.
"Your Greatest Wealth this New Year is your Health"
Happy Holidays from In Balance Health Coaches!!
Fall Is On It's Way!!
Who doesn't love the cool, crisp air. We love to see the beautiful array of colors such as; yellow, orange and red. What colors will you include on your plate for you and your family this fall? Did you know that your body desires foods of the season?
Would you like to feel more grounded, calm, or stable? You can accomplish that by simply adding some rooted vegetables into your diet. Roots like carrots, sweet potatoes, and turnips are a rich source of nutritious complex carbohydrates. Instead of upsetting blood sugar levels like refined sweet foods do, they help regulate them.
Long roots – carrots, parsnips, burdock and daikon radish – are excellent blood purifiers and can help improve circulation in the body.
Round roots – turnips, radishes, beets and rutabagas – nourish the stomach, spleen, pancreas, and reproductive organs.
Which root vegetables do you eat most? If you’re like most people in the world, you typically consume carrots and potatoes. Here are a few others to explore:
- Beets: They contain an abundance of antioxidants and are highly detoxifying
- Onions: Rich in antioxidants and other phytonutrients, onions are prized for their ability to strengthen the immune system
- Parsnips: They look like giant white carrots and have a sweet, earthy taste. They’ve also got plenty of fiber, vitamin C, folic acid, niacin, thiamine, magnesium, and potassium
- Radishes: An excellent source of vitamin C, they are also rich in calcium, molybdenum and folic acid
- Sweet Potatoes: They contain unsurpassed levels of beta-carotene and are also rich in vitamin C, phytonutrients, and fiber
Excited to add more roots to your diet? Here’s a fun, easy recipe:
Roasted Root Vegetables Prep Time: 10 minutesCooking Time: 25-35 minutesServes 4 to 6
1 sweet potato2 parsnips2 carrots2 turnips1 daikon radish (or substitute/add in other favorites, like squash)Extra virgin olive oilSalt and pepperHerbs: Rosemary, thyme or sage (fresh if possible)*If desired add 1/2 fresh cranberries
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Wash and dice all vegetables into bite-sized cubes. Place in a large baking dish with sides. Drizzle with olive oil; mix well to coat each vegetable lightly with oil. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and herbs. Bake uncovered for 25-35 minutes or until vegetables are tender and golden brown, checking every 10 minutes to stir and make sure veggies are not sticking. Tip: Any combination of vegetables will work. Roasting only one kind of vegetable also makes a nice side dish.
Feed your soul with rooted, grounding veggies!
Bon Appetit! Your Wellness Coaches at In Balance!
Topic: Powerful plant protein
How well do you know beans?
Creamy cannellinis, meaty garbanzos, sweet adzuki, tender pintos, and so many more—beans are one of the most powerful, nutrient-dense plant foods around. Consider this: Beans are packed with tons of fiber, as well as plenty of iron and protein. They are rich in antioxidants and phytonutrients. They are low in calories. Plus, studies have found them to lower risk of cancer, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes.
What To Do With Beans
Many people avoid beans because they just don’t know what to do with them. Are you one of them? Keep reading:
- Toss beans and diced veggies (such as celery, shallots, red peppers) with vinaigrette for a quick bean salad.
- Blend cooked beans with tomatoes, onions, and your favorite seasonings to create a yummy bean soup.
- Top a green salad with 1/3 cup of your favorite bean.
- Puree beans with a bit of olive oil, a garlic clove, salt, and your favorite seasonings. Voila! A fast dip or sandwich spread.
- Include 1/3 cup of beans with your other favorite toppings next time you make stuffed baked potatoes or sweet potatoes.
- Add 1/4 cup pureed beans to your favorite pancake, waffle, muffin, or cake recipe. You’ll be surprised at how moist and springy baked goods are when baked with beans.
If you’re new to cooking with beans, try these tips for delicious and well-cooked beans.
- Be sure to wash and clean the beans first.
- Soak dried beans for 8-12 hours before cooking (hint: cut a bean in half; if the center is still opaque, keep soaking).
- After soaking, rinse, fill pot with fresh water, bring to a boil, then skim off the foam.
- To aid digestion, add kombu, bay leaf, cumin, anise, or fennel to the water
- Cover and simmer for the suggested time.
- Remember: Only add salt at the end of cooking (about 10 minutes before the beans are done) or it will interfere with the cooking process.
- Quick tips: For speedier prep, boil dried beans for 5 minutes, then soak for 2-4 hours. Or use canned beans instead (some people find them even easier to digest!). Be sure to avoid canned beans with added salt or preservatives and rinse thoroughly once removed from the can.
GET EVEN HEALTHIER!
Would you like help learning how to choose and cook healthy foods like beans? Curious about how health coaching can help you make your own healthy changes? Let’s talk! Schedule an initial complimentary consultation with me today—or pass this offer on to someone you care about!
I received my training from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, where I learned about more than one hundred dietary theories and studied a variety of practical lifestyle coaching methods. Drawing on this knowledge, I will help you create a completely personalized “roadmap to health” that suits your unique body, lifestyle, preferences, and goals.
Learn more about my training and my unique approach to health coaching.