Food Is Not Your Enemy


Holiday Overeating and Family Drama: The Role of Forgiveness
December 16, 2013, 1:25 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , ,

Have you ever downed an entire package of chips, crackers, or cookies? Ate mashed potatoes or cake until you felt sick? Drank more eggnog or wine than your body wanted?

Do you remember how you were feeling at the time?

I ask because sometimes we overeat to distract ourselves from difficult emotions we may be experiencing. Think about it–have you noticed that sometimes when you overeat you’re not hungry at all? What you are is lonely, or angry at your mother, or sad, or resentful, or frustrated, or something else.

It’s way more effective to address your uncomfortable feelings directly rather than trying to cover them up with food, food that you’ll likely wish you hadn’t eaten very soon after eating it. One of the ways to deal with these feelings is to forgive—yourself as well as others.

Forgiving is not easy, even for the most enlightened among us. If you’ve been allowing yourself to be controlled by past or present hurts, think about forgiving. These steps can help:

  • Talk to sympathetic friends and family. Chatting with others is tremendously comforting.
  • Write a letter to the person you’d like to forgive. You can decide whether or not you send it.
  • See the situation from the other person’s perspective–your own perspective may change.
  • Don’t forget to forgive yourself. Sometimes we can be harshest with ourselves. Don’t beat yourself up about overeating at a holiday party—it won’t help you with your weight or health goals; it will just make you unhappy.
  • Understand that you are responsible for your own attitude. Don’t let holding a grudge hold you back in life.

Forgive and watch how much better your relationship with food becomes.

Happy holidays to you! 

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Butternut Squash Soup With Parmesan and Sage
September 23, 2013, 11:58 am
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Here’s a recipe for a yummy butternut squash soup…

Serves 6.

1 medium butternut squash

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 medium onion, chopped

2 1/2 cups vegetable stock, or water

1 teaspoon salt

Freshly ground white pepper

1/2-3/4 cup whole milk

12 whole fresh sage leaves

6 tablespoons freshly grated parmesan cheese

Halve the squash and scoop out and discard the seeds and stringy pulp. Use a large knife to cut away and discard the tough skin. Cut the flesh into 1/2-inch chunks. There should be about 6 cups. Set aside.

Heat the butter in a medium pot or soup kettle. Add the onion and saute over medium heat until golden, about 6 minutes. Add the squash and cook, stirring often, for 2 minutes more. 

Add the stock or water, salt, and white pepper to taste. You can also throw in a parmesan cheese rind for extra richness. Bring to a boil. Lower the heat, cover and simmer until the squash is tender, about 15 minutes. Remove the cheese rind if you used one and discard it.

Transfer the squash mixture to a blender. Add 1/2 cup milk and puree, working in batches. (You can also use an immersion blender directly in the pot.) 

Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish each bowl with 2 whole sage leaves. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon cheese over each bowl and serve.

 

(Recipe courtesy of “The Complete Italian Vegetarian Cookbook” by Jack Bishop)



New 3-Month Holistic Nutrition Counseling Program Available!
August 29, 2012, 11:27 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

New for Fall 2012–I’ve just added a 3-month program option! You can now sign on to work with me for three months instead of six. Great for those looking for a shorter commitment. More about my programs here.



10 Tips for Living a Long and Healthy Life
March 15, 2012, 3:23 pm
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We all want to live a long, healthy life. But what’s the best way to make that a real possibility? Read on for my 10 tips to help you reach the century mark …

Add more whole grains, vegetables, and fruits into your diet. No one diet fits all, but everyone would benefit from eating more of these foods and less meat, dairy, and processed foods (I’m looking at you, Doritos, Kraft Singles, Cool Whip, and frozen chicken nuggets).

Maintain a healthy weight. If you’re overweight, you’re at a higher risk for developing type 2 diabetes, cancer, heart disease, arthritis, depression, and many other problems. Leaner individuals tend to live longer.

Don’t smoke. No further explanation needed, right?

Move. A combination of vigorous exercise, moderate exercise, and simply moving around more–even via activities like pacing while on the phone or washing dishes rather than sitting all day, every day–brings on a tremendous host of health benefits, from weight loss to improved heart health to reduced stress.

Rest. Inadequate amounts of sleep and rest can have negative effects on your immune system, energy, and stress levels, and studies have shown that getting fewer than seven hours of sleep per night leads to a much greater caloric intake of snacks the next day and therefore an increased risk of obesity over time.

Get your vitamins from food. Recent studies have found that vitamin pills don’t seem to be providing us with much benefit; there’s something about vitamins found in their natural form, surrounded by all kinds of other micronutrients in food, that makes them much more effective. Higher intakes of the antioxidant vitamins C and E from food, in particular, were associated with markers that lead to longer life.

Make your brain work. Use it or lose it. Never stop looking to learn new things or to engage in activities that challenge you.

Be social. As we get older, it can be all too easy to become lazy about maintaining ties with friends and extended family. But it’s so worth the effort–studies have shown that people with a good social network are happier and live longer.

Manage stress. Uncontrolled stress can raise blood pressure, cholesterol levels, and lead to a whole host of diseases.

Don’t just treat, prevent. Rather than only paying attention to your body once it gets sick, try caring for it every day. Feed it nourishing food. Give it exercise. Allow it to rest when it’s tired. Get it a massage when it’s stressed. Show it the love it deserves.



Last Chance to Sign Up: Free Stress Reduction Teleclass on Monday, May 24 at 8 p.m. ET

Join me for my FREE stress reduction teleclass tonight, May 24 at 8 p.m. ET, when I’ll be sharing the basics of how to squash stress through food.

During the call, I’ll help you take the first step toward recognizing and calming the stresses in your life, which is critical for good health and weight maintenance.

There’s still time to register: simply click here and provide me with your full name, e-mail address, and phone number. I will then e-mail you the call-in information.



Another Reason to Hit the Greenmarket: ADHD Linked to Pesticide Exposure
May 18, 2010, 9:53 am
Filed under: Chronic Disease, food politics, Fruits, Uncategorized, Vegetables | Tags: , , ,

People love to pooh-pooh organic or famers market fruits and vegetables, saying it’s just not worth the higher cost. But would it be worth it to you to pay more for produce if you knew it would protect your child from developing ADHD?

According to CNN, a new study published in the journal Pediatrics has found that children with above-average levels of one common pesticide byproduct in their urine had roughly twice the odds of getting a diagnosis of ADHD.

Pesticides kill bugs by causing a toxic effect on the nervous system, and unfortunately, those effects can occur in humans as well if they eat conventionally grown produce treated with pesticides.

Consuming organic produce will certainly help. And national surveys have found that the non-organic produce sold in greenmarkets tends to have a much lower level of pesticide residue than the produce sold in mainstream supermarkets.

By all means, do not stop eating fruits and vegetables over this issue. If you can’t afford all organic, all the time, use this list from the Environmental Working Group, which details which conventionally grown produce is the “cleanest” and which tends to be the most contaminated by pesticide residue.



The Rise of Company Gardens

Interesting piece in The New York Times about how several companies are starting to install on-site gardens for employees to tend. Even PepsiCo, Best Buy, and Kohl’s are getting in on the action:

“As companies have less to spend on raises, health benefits and passes to the water park, a fashionable new perk is emerging: all the carrots and zucchini employees can grow.

Carved from rolling green office park turf or tucked into containers on rooftops and converted smoking areas, these corporate plots of dirt spring from growing attention to sustainability and a rising interest in gardening. But they also reflect an economy that calls for creative ways to build workers’ morale and health.”

I’m all for this. Heading outside to garden for a few minutes a day with the company’s blessing is a great way to clear your head and relieve stress. And picking some carrots to munch on sure beats heading to the vending machine for a Snickers bar in the afternoon.

I’m all for this. Heading outside for a few minutes a day with the company’s blessing is a great way to clear your head and relieve stress. And picking some carrots to munch on sure beats heading to the vending machine for a Snickers bar.