June – the school year will soon be over and we really have to start thinking about holiday time. With that in mind come worries, like…
“Will I look good in a bathing suit?”
Getting my weight under control has come from a process of treating myself as well as I treat others in every way.
– Oprah Winfrey
Why Diets Don’t Work?
You can’t turn on the TV, drive down the road or go to a party without being confronted with the World’s hottest obsession: weight. Diets are a billion-dollar industry; companies spend millions and millions luring you to try the latest diet (low carb, high protein, low fat, no fat, you name it) with promises that this will (finally!) be the solution—your shortcut to a thinner body. Advertising efforts also deeply affect our children, who develop distorted body images and are often on diets as early as nine or 10 years of age.
Our culture touts diet pills, celebrity workouts, convenience foods and trendy diets to help us achieve our desired weight, but these quick-fix solutions have backfired. The world populace has reached its highest weight in history. About half of people are overweight; one-third are obese. The World Health Organization predicts there will be 2.3 billion overweight adults in the world by 2015 and more than 700 million of them will be obese. Diets steer us away from our common sense and dip deeply into our pocketbooks while eliciting few, if any, lasting results. Why?
- Diets don’t work because each person is unique, with different needs based on gender, age, ancestry and lifestyle; how could one diet be right for everyone?
- Diets don’t work because they are extreme solutions. As in physics, if a pendulum swings to one extreme, it has to swing equally to the other. A diet might work for a short amount of time, but research shows that almost all diets result in a 10-pound gain once off the diet.
- Diets don’t work because they are too restrictive. People who fail on diet plans are not flawed or weak. Diets by nature require discipline and restriction at levels that are unsustainable by a healthy human body.
- Most people are disconnected from why they gain weight and see diet as the only culprit. For example, ignoring or discounting emotions is often the first thing to cause weight imbalances.
In our fast-paced world, we have lost sight of many aspects of life that truly nourish and balance our bodies, such as slowing down, eating a home-cooked meal and spending quality time with loving people. Eating consciously and making simple lifestyle changes will create positive results and release you from the endless cycle of dieting.
Given half a chance, your body will balance out by itself, but this is only possible by getting out of the diet mentality and listening to what you truly need. Imagine taking all of the outward energy you expend on diets, fads and gimmicks and turning it inward, so that you can listen to your heart and inner wisdom. There is no such thing as a quick fix; you already have everything you need within you. With careful thought and loving reflection, you can feed yourself in a nourishing way. Working with your body rather than against it will bring you increased energy, stabilized weight and sustainable health.
The best part is: if you eat the right foods in the first place, you won’t have to worry about dieting!
Food Focus: Berries
A healthy lifestyle is the key to longevity, optimum weight, abundant energy and balance. By using fruit and berries to satisfy our taste for sweetness, we can leave behind the use of chemical, processed and refined sweeteners. Berries are easy to digest, are cleansing and cooling and are great for those who are overstressed and overheated from excessive mental strain or hot climates. Fruits are filled with fiber and liver stimulants, which act as natural, gentle laxatives. Whenever possible, buy fresh, locally grown fruit and berries as opposed to imported fruits shipped from far-off places. This keeps you eating in season, and more in harmony with your environment and climate.
Eating raw fruit especially berries in summer months is highly cooling, while baking it in the winter months neutralizes the cooling effect. Fruit in the form of juice seems like a great choice, but be aware that juice rapidly raises blood sugar levels, leading to an energy crash soon after.
Whether you are having fresh fruit or berries for a light early morning breakfast, a midday snack or evening treat, enjoy nature’s sweetness and whenever possible buy organic.
-Packed with vitamins, fiber, and particularly high levels of antioxidants known as polyphenols, strawberries are among the top 20 fruits in antioxidant capacity and are a good source of manganese and potassium. Just one serving — about eight strawberries — provides more vitamin C than an orange
Benefit the liver and kidneys, cleanse blood of toxins, regulate menstrual cycles, treat anemia and raspberry leaf tea can promote labour at childbirth
A new University of Michigan Cardiovascular Center study suggests that blueberries may help reduce belly fat and risk factors for cardiovascular disease and metabolic syndrome. According to a study presented at the 2009 Experimental Biology conference, a diet rich in blueberries lowers blood cholesterol levels while improving glucose control and insulin sensitivity, lowering the risk of subsequent heart disease and diabetes.
Compose significantly high amounts of phenolic flavonoid phytochemicals such as anthocyanins, ellagic acid, tannin), quercetin, gallic acid, cyanidins, pelargonidins, catechins, kaempferol and salicylic acid. Scientific studies show that these antioxidant compounds may have potential health benefits against cancer, aging, inflammation, and neurological diseases.
Slightly warming in nature; increase overall body energy, remedy arthritis and rheumatism and are rich in iron, which improves the blood.
Recipe of the Month: Super Berry Milkshake
Prep time: 2 minutes
- 1 banana
- 1 cup almond milk
- 1 cup berries
- 5 Brazil Nuts
- 1 Tablespoon Honey
- 1 pinch Himalayan rock salt
- Half a handful Goji Berries (optional)
Mix in blender until smooth and serve. Pour in the glass and enjoy.
Did You Know?
The darker the berry, the greater its phytochemical content and the more likely its reputed health benefits. Scientists have found berries have some of the highest antioxidant levels of any fresh fruits (measured as ORAC), and kale and spinach are the only vegetables with ORAC values as high as fresh, delicious berries. Fresh berries are some of the most powerful (and delicious) disease-fighting foods available.
Tip of the Month: Keeping Berries Longer
Fresh berries are one of summer’s great pleasures, but they don’t come cheap — which makes it even more disappointing when a basket of strawberries or raspberries turns to moldy mush within days of purchase. Wash the berries in a diluted vinegar bath (1 cup vinegar plus 3 cups water) and spin them dry in a salad spinner lined with paper towels until they are completely dry. Store the cleaned berries in a sealable container lined with paper towels, leaving the lid open a little to allow moisture to escape.
The vinegar destroys bacteria and mold spores on the berries, helping them stay fresh longer. According to Lifehacker, this method extends the shelf life of berries by days, sometimes even weeks.
Get Even Healthier!
Want help learning how to choose and use nutritious fats and other good-for-you foods? 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!
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Now It’s Your Turn
That’s it for this month. Please email me any suggestions and ideas you have, or especially your personal stories and experiences on the way to a healthy, happy life.
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“Let the food be your medicine and the medicine be your food.”