The Healthy Well

Spiritual, Mental, and Physical Refreshment: Grab a Cup

Archive for July, 2010

Monday Update

September 15 is my target date to lose 15 lbs.  I intended to begin on June 15, but I decided to wait until I got my cast off instead.  Otherwise, I wouldn’t be sure what my true weight would be.  I also wanted to be more mobile.  So far, my weight has only fluctuated a pound or so.  Last weekend held me up a bit.  Saturdays are my hubby’s breakfast days, he enjoys going to the local buffet.  I don’t deprive myself of anything, I just eat smaller portions.  I mean, how can I not have biscuits and sausage gravy?  I probably wouldn’t have gained anything, except we grilled hotdogs for dinner.  I knew that would tip the scales a bit. This won’t happen again.

When I decided to take on the challenge of losing weight,  I wanted to eat in a way that would be more natural for me.  I didn’t want a diet or a plan that would be restrictive, but would cause me to be aware of my own eating habits.   Since I’ve started, I’ve noticed that I don’t snack as much as before. This limits my eating only when I’m hungry.  I’m also increasing my water intake each day as well.  I also dragged out my old Champion juicer and began juicing, again.

Although I’ve only lost a few pounds, I can tell I’m losing inches.  My morning yoga and controlled eating throughout the day is beginning to pay off.


Look to Others for Your Happiness

When was the last time you did something for someone else just because?  I don’t mean doing things for people within your immediate boundaries like family and close friends, that’s too easy.

Give sacrificially. How about people who least expect something from you?  People who have no way of paying you back? Those who I gave my sugar free fig jam to were people I see at church each week.  Beyond that, we don’t really interact.

Do something that causes you to stretch.  It had been over 20 years since I had done any canning.  I didn’t have any of the canning materials and the recipes were confusing.

Fig and Strawberry Jam (sugar free)

Although I had canned in the past, I had never made jam.   There was no way for me to know in advance whether any of these people liked figs or not.  Each person who I handed a jar of jam remarked how much they loved figs and couldn’t wait to try.   Being able to give freely brought me happiness.  It made want to do more.

Give yourself away.  You see, happiness is a paradox.  People spend so much of their lives trying to find happiness by means of self-gratification that happiness actually eludes them.  The true path to happiness is through others.  I had the resources and the ability to do something and share it with others.  The whole process cost me time and money, but the end product was priceless.

Now, go find someone.

The Fig’s Up

Brown Turkey fig split in half.
Image via Wikipedia

As a child, my mother used to serve figs that came in a jar for breakfast.  Visually, they were none too appealing which is probably the reason I never ate one until I moved south.

When my husband and I bought a home with a fig tree in the back yard, only then did I get up enough courage to pick one from the tree and pop it in my mouth.  When I did..OH, MY!

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Coffee and the Adrenaline Rush

coffee with cream
Image by cafemama via Flickr

I love coffee. Every morning before starting my day, I make myself several cups of coffee and dress it up with half and half and sweetener. In the evening, I repeat it with my husband. It’s a ritual. However, I’m concerned over my sweet tooth, so I’m looking for ways to control my craving. I know coffee is part of the problem.

Research shows that there’s a connection between coffee and hypoglycemia. Coffee causes the body to suddenly release adrenalin, hence the morning “pick me up”. Sugar and refined carbohydrates also cause the body to respond in the same manner. Rather than the body reacting naturally to its own adrenalin, it’s given an unnatural dose by the stimulants. Over time, the body becomes used to these foods and only requires more to feel normal. What many people don’t realize is there is a direct correlation between hypoglycemia and diabetes and heart disease.

Going cold turkey is a little much which is why I’ve decided to eliminate my morning coffee time to start. Instead, I have a few glasses of water before I start the day. In just a few days, I’ve begun to notice that my sweet craving has begun to wain. I still have coffee in the evening with my husband, but even that seems to be losing its appeal. I’m convinced the less dependent I am on coffee, sugar, and refined carbohydrates, the more control I have of my health.

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When Your Emotions Get the Best of You

Yesterday, I was in a funk. I sat here alone with my broken leg and began to feel sorry for myself. There were a dozen things I came up with to tell myself why I was such a loser. No matter what I tried to do, I couldn’t shake the feeling. It was all consuming.

When my husband came home from work to take me to the bank, all I did was snap at him.

“You’re in a bad mood.”
“I’m not in a bad mood.”
“Yes, you are.”
“You’re right, I’m in a bad mood, but it’s not you.”

Our emotions have a way of spreading to others. The old cliche “misery loves company” is true. Thank goodness, my husband was not going to accept my emotion. After I admitted that I had a crabby attitude, everything seemed to get better. Sometimes you just need to come face to face with who you are. It also helps if you have a special friend that will love you through it.

If you need some cheering up, watch these two little guys and have a great day!

Looking Beyond Calories

Get Your Daily Sugar Intake in One Drink!

Can’t you just feel the coolness of the fruit smoothie quenching the heat of the day?

You know what they say about looks being deceiving.  Now that I’ve made a commitment to cut down on my daily sugar intake, I decided to see exactly how many calories and sugar grams were in these drinks.

I did a little checking to see exactly how nutritional these were.  Surprisingly, these Fruit Smoothies boast only 287 calories.  The killer is the total number of  carbs at 45.9 of which  42 grams is sugar.  This is just 8 grams short of daily sugar intake based on a 2,000 calorie diet.  Not good.

Ummm.  No thanks.

Whole Food Shopping

On our way home from our vacation in western New York, we stayed at our usual campsite in  beautiful Flat Hills, West Virginia.  Across the highway was an Amish whole foods market.  If you’ve never heard the term whole foods and wonder what it means, it’s simply foods that are unprocessed and, or unrefined, but not necessarily organic according to Wikipedia.

My first impression upon entering the market was I had walked into someone’s  pantry.  There were jars and packages of generically labeled foods lining the shelves.  I wanted to grab a cart and run down the aisles filling my basket before the buzzer went off.  Sadly, this wasn’t a game show. Thankfully,  I managed to keep my wits and limit myself to a few choice things like butter, steel cut oats, and some homemade jams and jellies for friends. 

My real prize was the steel cut oats.  The packages were huge and  only a fraction of the cost health food stores and supermarkets charge.  If you’ve never heard of or had steel cut oats, you’re missing a treat.  It has a much better flavor than regular oatmeal.  Steel cut oats have a nutty flavor and a crunchy texture (which satisfies my need to chew).  It also keeps me from getting hungry throughout the morning.  If you’d like to learn more about steel cut oats, FormerFat Guy can tell you a lot.