Get Back On Track After the Holidays

Since most of us have indulged heartily in a variety of celebration fare over the holiday season, many of you may be feeling the cumulative effects of too much holiday cheer about now in the forms of lowered energy, dimished resistance to colds & flu, excess weight, & non stop sweet cravings.

The following simple tips will help you to get back on track, feel better & shed those unwanted pounds that have crept on over the past few months.

Increasing your intake of lightly cooked low starch veggies is a great start to reducing excess poundage and to restore balance to a system that’s become overly acidic from too many sugars (alcohol included), too much salt & starches. The Bieler’s Soup recipe in my e-book is an easy , tasty way to do this.

By starting your day with a bowl of cooked whole grain cereal, a poached egg (or other source of protein) & some Bieler’s Soup or lightly cooked low starch veggies, you will give your body a steady stream of clean burning fuel that will see you through until lunch or a mid morning snack depending on your individual needs.

Don’t limit yourself to cooked oatmeal. Try kamut, spelt or rye rolled flakes that cook up in a matter of minutes..or if you have the time cook the whole grains ahead of time & store in the frig for use later. Mixing the cooked grains instead of eating one variet at a time not only gives a wider variety of nutrients, but gives different textures & tastes. Quinoa & buckwheat are also delicious morning cereal grains that both come in “quick” forms.

A small amount of fruit in your morning cereal adding some oat , rice, un-sweetened coconut milk or dairy if it agrees with you is a nice alternative breakfast. I really enjoy adding a tbls. of freshly ground flax seed to either breakfast to give both a tasty crunch & a nice serving of EFA’s. A small pat of unsalted butter or dollop of hazelnut oil is another delicious way to add EFA’s to your daily diet.

Eating small mini meals that include a couple of ounces of your favorite protein, a complex carb & ample portion of low starch veggies several times a day works wonders. This will help you to stabilize blood sugar & to lessen sweet/salt cravings as well as melting off the pounds. My quick & easy favorite is a few slices of turkey or chicken on a Wasa cracker with a bit of Dijon style mustard & some Bieler’s Soup. One to two of the mini meals( mid-morning or mid-afternoon snacks) can be a portion of fruit with yogurt or fruit blended into a smoothie with some freshly ground flax & oat or rice milk with a tbls. of unsweetened coconut milk for body.

Some ideas for New Year’s resolutions to make vibrant health & ideal weight a reality….

1) Incorporate low starch veggies into your daily diet. I know I sound like a broken record, but this really is the foundation for a healthy diet.

2) Bring balance into your daily diet. An easy way to do this is to get in the habit of drinking a cup of Bieler’s Soup or equal amount of low starch veggies every time you eat a flour product or protein. There are many quick & easy to prepare veggie soup recipes in my e-book as well so you don’t get bored. The soups are great because you can grab them on the run.

3) Start to think of sugar & alcohol as celebration treats, not daily fare…and balance with a cup of Bieler’s Soup or low starch veggies before or after the celebration. In a pinch, punch a few holes into a zucchini punched & microwave for 1 minute each side for a quick & portable low starch veggies serving. You can easily take this with you to a restaurant & sneak it onto your main dish plate without anyone noticing. This tip has been a godsend for many of my clients who travel a lot since most hotels have microwaves in the rooms.

4) Get into the habit of reading labels for hidden sugars, preservatives, chemicals, & salt.

5) Get moving!! As little as 15-20 minutes of sustained movement can boost your metabolism, lift your spirits, reduce stress, & enhance your immune system. Taking the stairs instead of the elevator, returning your shopping cart to the market door instead of leaving it next to your car , & parking a bit further from your errand destinations all contribute to a healthly dose of movement that doesn’t have to be a chore.

If possible, make a short 10 minute walk in nature..or even around the block at lunch part of your daily routine. Stationary biking, using Nordic Track machine, treadmill or even a mini trampoline while catching up on the daily news at home can also be simple ways of incorporating movement into your life without having to join a gym. Finding a favorite yoga or Pilates DVD is almost like having a personal trainer in your home.

6) Take your health into your own hands(literally) by holding one of your fingers lightly when you are stalled in traffic, waiting in line, watching t.v. or on the phone. Each finger effects over 14,000 functions in your body. For more information go to: Natural Self Healing Tools in the Links section of my website.

Remember behavioral scientists have found that a simple change becomes a lifelong habit after one month if done daily. So as the ancient Asian sages say..a journey begins with one step…

Stay tuned for quick & easy recipes that stave off a sweet tooth in my next blog.

Tips For Staying Healthy Through the Holidays:

The holiday season is a wonderful time for connecting with loved ones and of celebration. Most of us celebrate by sharing our favorite time honored family comfort foods..the sugary goodies, salty snacks, & starchy side dishes we enjoyed as children, liberally peppered with a variety of alcoholic beverages (think “mainlined” sugar).

While enjoying some holiday cheer on Thanksgiving, Christmas Day, & New Year’s should not be a problem, having a non-stop celebration from Halloween through Super Bowl can negatively impact your health as well as pack on the pounds.

By choosing 3-4 celebrations events spaced out over the holiday season you will avoid a toxic build up & minimize weight gain. Eating smaller portions of all the foods you love will also minimize impact. Think preventively by upping your intake of lightly cooked low starch veggies or a cup or two of the Bielers Soup recipe from my e-book with small amounts of protein the day of the event. By having a large mug of Bieler’s Soup right before your celebration event, you will stave off the urge to devour everything in sight at the h’or derve table as well as balancing the sugary,salty starchy goodies you will consume there.

The day or two ..or three after (depending on how much celebrating occured), increase your intake of “Nature’s Balancers”, the lightly cooked low starch veggies &/or Bieler’s Soup. Remember that if you’ve indulged a bit too much in sugar or alcohol which is a concentrated sugar that having 4-6 mini-meals of protein & low starch lightly cooked veggies /Bieler’s Soup after the fact can stabilize blood sugar & restore balance to your system. Bear in mind that too much sugar not only disrupts blood sugar leading to “out of control” day after appetite & puts on the pounds, but also supresses the immune ststem right at the height of the cold & flu season.

In addition to balancing with foods, a little wisely chosen support from supplements can be a great help in fending off colds & flu.

I find that taking “Oscillococcinum” a readily available homeopathic once weekly during the holiday season acts like a “homeopathic” flu shot for me & my clients.

At the first sign of a scratchy throat or sneezing, gargling with salt water every few hours can sometimes stave off a virus as well.

“Source Naturals” makes two effective cold & flu products to be taken at the first sign of imbalance: Wellness Formula capsules is a good choice if you experience deep cold sensation with body aches & chills, while Wellness Fizz is a nice match for a sore, scratchy throat with feverish hot sensations with irritability.

A short 1 day fast on Bieler’s Soup or pureed low starch veggies can nip a virus in the bud or at least substantially shorten the duration. If you have a fever alternate with diluted 100% apple jiuce with a liberal squeeze of lemon or papaya puree diluted. A 20 minute soak in a warm bath with 2-3 cups of Epsom Salts & your favorite essential oil can also assist in gently de-toxing the body. Drink lots of pure non tap water as well.

Consult your MD if you have a high fever or one that lasts for more than a few days despite all the above. I believe in using Western Medicine combined with natural healing tools when necessary.

Light daily exercise is a super pick-me-up and de-stressor that can minimize holiday weight gain & gives a boost to your immune system. As little as 20 minutes a day of walking at a moderate pace can work wonders.

If you live where the winters are mild, a stroll in nature can be a much needed holiday restorative. In the colder climes, a walk in an indoor mall enjoying window shopping & people watching can also do the trick. Stationary bicycles or mini- trampolines used in the privacy of your own home are other options.

Finally, take the time to relax & enjoy each moment you can….really breath in the holiday smells & hear the sounds of the season. Remember, most of all, that the best gift you can give to another is the gift of your deeply connect & to listen.

Have a happy & healthy holiday season.