You’re not fat! But we need to consider what fat you are using!
Actually, America is considered the most fat country in the world with 30% of our people obese. It doesn’t mean that fat makes us fat.. but it’s just a sign that we aren’t choosing the RIGHT FATS.. Here is the latest graph:Read More »
Well, not for life, but just for a day a week! If you start researching health, you will find incredible documentaries and books reviewing our consumption of meat as a nation.Read More »
It’s been a while since we did a Babystep! Here’s one that should be highly considered right away!!Read More »
So, why should we buy organic? Is it a conspiracy? Are they just making this up to charge us more? What produce is really important to buy organic?
These are all questions I had when I started changing over what we purchased. I really felt more liberated when I found the list on www.foodnews.org. It taught me that we don’t “have” to buy everything organic, that we can purchase the “dirty dozen” in the organic form and the rest we can purchase from our local farmers who carefully harvest these REAL foods for us.
What is Organic?
“Organic” is a designation used by the US Department of Agriculture National Organic Program to certify food that is produced without synthetic chemicals or fertilizers, genetic engineering, radiation or sewage sludge.
Why do we need to buy Organic?
Pesticides are toxic by design.
They are created expressly to kill living organisms — insects, plants, and fungi that are considered “pests.”
Many pesticides pose health dangers to people. These risks have been established by independent research scientists and physicians across the world.
As acknowledged by U.S. and international government agencies, different pesticides have been linked to a variety of health problems, including:
- nervous system toxicity
- hormone system effects
- skin, eye and lung irritation
Are there pesticides in our system?
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s national biomonitoring program has detected pesticides in blood and urine samples from 95.6 percent of more than 5,000 Americans age 6 and older. (CDC 2009).
Is it too late to change?
No… Studies led by Chensheng Lu of Emory University found that concentrations of organophosphate pesticides (This particular pesticide has been linked to ADD/ADHD), including chlorpyrifos and malathion, in elementary school-age children’s bodies peaked during the summer, when they ate the most fresh produce. But just five days after switching to an all-organic diet, tests found their bodies essentially pesticide-free.
(Lu 2006, 2008).
So how do I shop now?
Personally, I try to stick to the following list. We have had seasons of our life where finances were tighter. At that time we truly only purchased the main produce in the organic form. But we should strive to be as LOCAL and as ORGANIC as possible for the sake of our own bodies and our children’s bodies and future health.
This list is what made me feel more liberated. Knowing that the EWG (Environmental Working Group) had done the research for me, helped me feel “not as guilty” for buying my bananas covered in pesticides.
How do I wash my produce that I don’t buy organic?
When I get home from the grocery store or farmers market, I fill up my sink full of water and 2 drops of Basic H2 from Shaklee. This stuff is amazing and lasts forever! For under $10, you can use it for hundreds of purposes from basic window cleaning, to washing your cars, to cleaning your veggies!! It’s simply the greatest product ever!! So, my produce gets a good cleaning with this organic cleaner, I let it air dry and I have complete confidence that my kids can reach for any fruit or veggie and not ingest poisons.
If you’re like me, it’s a big step to change your budget around to buy organic produce. But think of the confidence you will have, and the possible side effects that you’re avoiding.
For more of your questions answered and referenced, you can go to www.foodnews.org and read more. The information here has been adapted from their website.
Happy shopping!Read More »
“Take also unto thee wheat, and barley, and beans, and lentils, and millet, and spelt, and put them in one vessel, and make bread of it.” Ezekiel 4:9
Babysteps do require us to “re-train” ourselves in an aspect of our routine. This takes time at first, but soon you’ll be running!! And it will be so simple to just know which items are good for your health and taste delicious!
Seems like the bread isle gets longer every time I visit the grocery store! It’s overwhelming, seriously. I can’t say I’ve conquered this step yet. It’s interesting to me, so I need the accountability of blogging about it so we can find the change for our family… I was considering going “gluten-free” but that step is a leap, so here are some thoughts toward a babystep!
When we first started changing our diets, one of the first things we did was change our bread and grains. I looked for labels that said 100% whole wheat bread. This is so much better than white, processed, non-food breads that sit in your stomach, spike your sugars, and wreck your intestines. We immediately saw a difference in our bodies. I personally am hypoglycemic (which means my blood sugars spike and drop quickly and I have a hard time with my moods and crashes…making my family’s life uncomfortable – to say it politely). So, changing to “good” carbs such as 100% whole grain breads helped keep my sugars more stable.
The challenge is to look at the back of the package. The whole grain bread you see may look good on the outside, but has hidden, harmful things inside. Here’s an example:
Here is the list of ingredients on a package of on brand of “100% Whole Wheat Bread”:
“Whole Wheat Flour, Water, Gluten, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Yeast, Cracked Wheat, Salt, Partially Hydrogenated Soybean Oil, Molasses, Raisin Juice Concentrate, Ethoxylated Mono-And Diglycerides Calcium Propionate (Preservative), Honey, Soy Lecithin.”
Here is the list of ingredients on the back of a package of another Arnold brand bread, this time called labeled “Natural 100% Whole Wheat Bread”:
“Unbleached Enriched Wheat Flour [Flour, Malted Barley Flour, Reduced Iron, Niacin, Thiamin Mononitrate (Vitamin B1), Riboflavin (Vitamin B2) Folic Acid], Water, Cracked Wheat, Whole Wheat Flour, Yeast, Barley, Honey, Fructose, Wheat Gluten, Partially Hydrogenated Soybean Oil, Salt, Wheat Bran, Malt, Ethoxylated Mono-And Diglycerides, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Calcium Propionate (Preservative), Caramel Color, Whey, Soy Flour, Calcium Carbonate, Soy Lecithin, Nonfat Milk.”
And now, here are the ingredients on the back of the package of whole wheat pita bread:
Stone Ground Whole Wheat Flour, Water, Yeast, Salt, Calcium Propionate
Some of the ingredients that stand out the most in the first two are High Fructose Corn Syrup and Partially Hydrogenated Soybean Oil. Both are junk. The second bread also lists Unbleached Enriched Wheat Flour, which is almost like saying “Borderline Fake Whole Wheat Bread.”
Bottom line for this example is stay away from these ingredients: High Fructose Corn Syrup, Partially Hydrogenated Soybean Oil, and any mention of the words “Unbleached” and/or “Enriched.” If you look these up, you’ll find plenty of research that shares how harmful these are for you and your kids.
My personal bottom line is to look for the fewest ingredients possible on a label! I do this with just about every food.
That may have been a big enough step for your family, but if you’re willing to take it further, you can try “sprouted grains”. There is a company called Ezekiel 4:9 that you can find in the refrigerator section of your organic section. The parent company is www.FoodforLife.com.
This is how they explain sprouting to us…Sprouting is the process of soaking seeds in order to bring about germination. Many seeds can be sprouted through this process. For instance, the most commonly known sprout is the alfalfa sprout. Wheat berries, spelt, rye and quinoa can also be sprouted. Food for Life uses a variety of grains in their Ezekiel bread products.
According to Food for Life, sprouting is the only process that allows all of the nutrients in grain to be released. It also converts the glucose in grains to maltose, which may be more easily handled by the body without causing insulin spikes. It is for this reason that sprouted grain breads may be appropriate for some low carbohydrate diets and diabetic diets.
They carry all forms of sprouted breads.. rolls, tortillas, cereals, english muffins!!
I spent some time switching to these breads, but I have gone back to 100% whole wheat breads without the yucky ingredients we talked about earlier. Arnold bread has come out with one without High Fructose Corn Syrup… But I feel that it’s my responsibility to go further to help my kids’ bodies be their best.
My KidNote about this… What we’ve found is that you cannot give up after just giving your kids something once. My 3 year old is pretty picky, but I just keep offering and soon he likes it. YOU know what is best for them, their taste buds will adjust. Don’t give up! I like to switch things up often as well, so I’ve seen this work many times. The first 2-3 times they may not enjoy it, but soon, they forget and eat up the great foods and go on to play!! You can do it!!!
Take this step! Your body will thank you!Read More »
BabyStep #2: Wean yourself of Processed Foods
It seems like an impossible step, and I’m still working on it. Not sure we will ever NOT have something processed in our home, but minimizing is possible. And enjoying fresh, God-foods versus man-foods is enjoyable!
Finding your local farmers’ market is a great step. Trying out foods that actually came out of the ground they toiled over…you will be shocked at how much better the fruits and veggies taste. We are not aware of how the super-market raises our food…there are chemical washes as well as ripening in chemicals. There are also wax polishers that we’re ingesting along with their pesticides. Documentaries like Food, Inc and Fresh are good to watch in learning more about what big companies are doing to our foods. Knowing our farmers helps us to some extent to know where our food comes from. The tastes is so much fuller and satisfying as well.
A great website is www.eatwild.com!! Check it out for grass fed beef, chicken, eggs, and milk in your area.
On a practical KIDNOTE: It takes time, but we started not having snacks in our house that were processed. When the kids come in from playing they are allowed to choose a fruit of veggie as a snack. I keep edamame, carrots, celery, and cucumbers cut up in the fridge and a fruit basket full of apples, bananas, tangerines, and grapes in the freezer. It took them about 6 months, but now they know to come in and ask for a fruit of veggie! They even love a smoothie. I am going to try freezing some protein smoothies into popsicles for the summer.
Real Food Has Curves, a new book written by Bruce Weinstein and Mark Scarbrough, offers a 7-step plan for weaning yourself off processed foods:
Seek true satisfaction. Enjoy genuine flavors, rather than fat, sugar, and salt added to mask the metallic taste of chemical additives.
Read labels wisely. You can find food with “real” ingredients in the supermarket if you read labels carefully.
Relish what’s on your plate. Devote time solely to enjoying the pleasures of eating.
Wean yourself off excess salt, fat, and sugar. You can also cook with smaller amounts of these ingredients by using natural substitutes like strong spices.
Give your palate time to change. You’ll gradually lose your taste for excessively sweet and salty foods.
Go for higher-quality foods. Look for products that contain the least amount of processed ingredients.
Treat yourself well by not skipping meals. Try eating three meals a day at fairly regular times, plus a mid-afternoon snack.Read More »
Welcome to Babysteps!
When you make that resolution to start getting healthy, it’s so tough to know where to begin. So much of our lifestyle points us to quick fixes and fast foods-this is defeating… BUT, this change is possible! I believe in YOU! It’s what your body is crying out for and it’s what your family deserves.
We don’t have to wait til we get the terminal word from someone with an inflated degree saying we need to change… we can change by taking babysteps. Maybe you can change one thing a month or every 3 months. It’s up to you, but if you’re willing to explore some changes… I’ll try to help you see what we have done. I’m still taking steps and sometimes we take a few steps back and one forward, but you will not regret the energy and vitality you can reach by taking these strides.
So, here we go!!! I will give a few each week, and you can pick when it’s time to make these changes.
Drink clean Water instead of EVERYTHING else!
Water is essential to our well-being. It seems so simple, but like I said, these are BabySteps! Water moves our bodies along to help our digestive process flow correctly.
Our bodies are made up of between 55 and 75 percent water and is in need of constant water replenishment. Did you know lean people have more water in their bodies because muscle holds more water than fat? Interesting.
Your lungs expel between two and four cups of water each day through normal breathing – even more on a cold day. If your feet sweat, there goes another cup of water. If you make half a dozen trips to the bathroom during the day, that’s six cups of water. If you perspire, you expel about two cups of water (which doesn’t include exercise-induced perspiration).
A person would have to lose 10 percent of her body weight in fluids to be considered dehydrated, but as little as two percent can affect athletic performance, cause tiredness and dull critical thinking abilities. Adequate water consumption can help lessen the chance of kidney stones, keep joints lubricated, prevent and lessen the severity of colds and flu and help prevent constipation.
Health benefits of water
Water is crucial to your health. It makes up, on average, 60 percent of your body weight. Every system in your body depends on water.
Lack of water can lead to dehydration, a condition that occurs when you don’t have enough water in your body to carry on normal functions. Even mild dehydration – as little as a 1 percent to 2 percent loss of your body weight – can sap your energy and make you tired. Dehydration poses a particular health risk for the very young and the very old.
How much water do you need?
Every day you lose water through sweating – noticeable and unnoticeable – exhaling, urinating and bowel movements. For your body to function properly, you need to replace this water by consuming beverages and foods that contain water. So how much water, or more precisely fluid, do you need?
This isn’t an easy question to answer. A healthy adult’s daily fluid intake can vary widely. Most people drink fluid to quench thirst, to supply perceived water needs and “out of habit.” At least three approaches estimate total fluid (water) needs for healthy, sedentary adults living in a temperate climate.
- Replacement approach. The average urine output for adults is 1.5 liters a day. You lose close to an additional liter of water a day through breathing, sweating and bowel movements. Food usually accounts for 20 percent of your fluid intake, so you if you consume 2 liters of water or other beverages a day (a little more than 8 cups), along with your normal diet, you can replace the lost fluids.
- Eight 8-ounce glasses of water a day. Another approach to water intake is the “8 x 8 rule” – drink eight 8-ounce glasses of water a day (about 1.9 liters). The rule could also be stated, “drink eight 8-ounce glasses of fluid a day,” as all fluids count toward the daily total. Though this approach isn’t supported by scientific evidence, many people use this basic rule as a guideline for how much water and other fluids to drink.
PRACTICAL TIP: wear 8 bracelets or rubber bands on one arm, throughout the day, switch them to the other arm until you’ve had all the water you need each day!
Factors that influence water needs
You may need to modify total fluid intake from these recommended amounts depending on several factors
including how active you are, the climate, your health status, and if you’re pregnant or breast-feeding.
- Exercise. If you exercise or engage in any activity that makes you sweat, you’ll need to drink extra water to compensate for that fluid loss. Drink 2 cups of water two hours before a long endurance event, for example, a marathon or half-marathon. One to 2 cups of water is also adequate for shorter bouts of exercise. During the activity, replenish fluids at regular intervals, and continue drinking water or other fluids after you’re finished. During intense exercise involving significant sweating, for example, during a marathon, sodium is lost in sweat, and you may need a sports drink with sodium rather than just water.
- Environment. You need to drink additional water in hot or humid weather to help lower your body temperature and to replace what you lose through sweating. You may also need extra water in cold weather if you sweat while wearing insulated clothing. Heated, indoor air can cause your skin to lose moisture, increasing your daily fluid requirements. And altitudes greater than 2,500 meters (8,200 feet) also can affect how much water your body needs. Higher altitudes may trigger increased urination and more rapid breathing, which uses up more of your fluid reserves.
- Illnesses or health conditions. Some signs and symptoms of illnesses, such as fever, vomiting and diarrhea, cause your body to lose extra fluids. To replace lost fluids, drink more water or oral rehydration solutions (Gatorade, Powerade, CeraLyte, others). When water loss can’t be replaced orally, intravenous water and electrolytes may be necessary. Increased water intake is nearly always advised in people with urinary tract stones. On the other hand, you may need to limit the amount of water you drink if you have certain conditions that impair excretion of water – such as heart failure and some types of kidney, liver, adrenal and thyroid diseases.
- Pregnant or breast-feeding. Women who are pregnant or breast-feeding need additional water to stay hydrated and to replenish the fluids lost, especially when nursing. The Institute of Medicine recommends that pregnant women drink 2.3 liters (nearly 10 cups) of fluids a day and women who breast-feed consume 3.1 liters (about 13 cups) of fluids a day.
This is all valid information. But really… how much sugar would we cut back on, how much caffeine, food coloring, preservatives and unnecessary calories could we save if we just switch our daily drink choices for water? Our children have temptations too. If we simply change what we order them at the restaurant or what we serve them at home, we can see a big difference in how their small bodies function and fight infection. The sugar content in their drinks is attacking their small systems and dragging their immune system downward quickly.
Try it! You might even drop a few pounds without even knowing!
For a further step, try making sure your water is PURE! If you’re just drinking tap water, there may be other problems that can occur. Having clean water can ensure your body doesn’t keep unnecessary chemicals, minerals, or toxins… causing us to detox more often since those don’t ever leave your body until you strategically make them leave.
Shaklee offers a range of options for healthy water purifiers starting reasonably at about $15 for a pitcher and 1 filter. Of course, there are other purifiers, but this is one we can stand behind!! Click on the link below to see more about these!
Drink to YOUR health!!!!
Read More »