A Bouquet Worthy to Stick Your Teeth In. Are You Worth It?

This morning I was in the garden to get some greens for my smoothie.

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I have a decent size garden and although it is not perfect (who has time for perfection any ways), it suits us and helps sustain us.

I actually was looking at my “volunteer” kale plants. The ones that had seeded themselves from the crop from 2 years ago and that have come up in many places. I have found them between my strawberries, between my herbs. I have found them in my pathways when I got rid of the grass that was growing there and now I looked at a bathtub I placed in my garden to grow my carrots in and there they were, mixed in with the other “weeds”.

Since my jobs for today include seeding my carrots in that bathtub I realized that I needed to weed the greens out and I felt this wave of gratitude coming over me. Here was food growing even though I had not done anything else but to create the opportunity.

It made me think of all the wonderful food that grows around us and is there just for the taking. We have not done anything for it. We have not seeded it, watered it or fertilized it, but may have walked by it and seen it (although not everyone does).

It made me think of all the people who say they cannot afford nutritious foods, but what about the dandelions that are growing in the fields in the spring, the nettles, the wild blueberries and blackberries. I thought about the fruit trees in other peoples yards. Some of these people have too much to harvest themselves and they would love someone to come and help them and let them take some of that harvest home.

And what about having a small “garden” where you live. Even if you live in a town house or a condo, there is still an opportunity to grow some of your own. You may be able to have a potted tomato plant, zucchini and cucumbers come now in a smaller plant, especially created for these occasions.

We can also grow some of our own kitchen herbs. Herbs are powerhouses of nutrition and healing properties.

It is not about being perfect, but about doing what you can.

As I came in the house with my little bouquet of kale in my hand I just had to put it in a vase and take a picture of this wonderful green and feel so rich for being able to have that for my breakfast as part of a smoothie, with other ingredients like;

  • 1/2 banana (bought when they were getting too ripe and sold for $5.00 per box, taken out of the skin and frozen),
  • some rhubarb (picked from my garden. That can be grown in a large pot),
  • The white part of a watermelon (which was priced down as it was bought in season. We ate the sweet centre and I peeled the green off and cut up the white part and froze it),
  • Some celery (paid full price on that),
  • 2 tsp hemp hearts,
  • 2 tsp of flax seeds,
  • 1/3 of a small avocado (on special),
  • 1 cup of home made kombucha (fermented tea made from 1 tea bag of black or green tea, 1/4 cup of sugar and 1 litre of water)

This breakfast had a rich flavour and was filled to the brim with nutrients. I love this kind of breakfast that I have it most of the days and vary the ingredients by what I have available from some of the fruits and foods I pick from my garden, from nature, from my neighbours, from the local farmers (markets) or what is on sale in the stores.

I always try to look at the future when there are deals to be had. I freeze a lot (raw to keep the enzymes in tact) and I look at the season to see if there are foods I can pick from nature.

If a food needs to be canned I will do that as it is still more nutritious than when you buy cans from the stores and there are no weird additives in my own canning, which means I am not putting extra toxins in my body.

All this does not have to cost a lot of money, but it does cost in time and effort.

But hey, I (and my family) am worth it and if I am not doing it for myself, who is going to do this for me?

Are you worth it?

If you are ready to learn how to make better choices, within your lifestyle, budget, for your family for their health, for you with regards to health maintenance, weight loss or health issues call me at 604-489-0200 or contact me

Your Personal Health Line Is Approaching The Death Line

Getting rid of health symptoms and disease is not a mystery to be solved any more. Doctors seem to do it all the time. All it takes is 3 medications to silence deadly health symptoms and 12 other medications to combat the side effects of the first 3 medications prescribed.

“Two thirds of Canadians over 65 years old take a minimum of 5 prescription drugs per day and one quarter take over 10 or more per day” reports Health Care In Canada, 2011 A Focus on Seniors And Aging.

As we know Doctors are good at getting rid of symptoms, which sometimes leads to getting rid of the problem, but where they fail is in making sure that the initial problem doesn’t come back.

What kind of life do you want to have?
Perhaps sitting in a Doctors office each and every month waiting hours to get your prescriptions refilled is perfectly ok with you?

Or maybe it doesn’t matter that those 3 to 10+ drugs you will be taking won’t ever really solve any of your problems. You spend your retirement years (your golden years) feeling tired, bloated; inflamed with pain you never had before and unable to go, do and move like you thought you would.
Before I can teach the ways to ensure that the above scenario does not happen to you I first have to explain your line of personal health.

There are 2 key components we need to establish. The first is your current state of health and the other key component are your body systems and organs that affect your our health.
There are literally thousands of systems and organs that affect our daily health but we are going to focus on just 3 for now: The Immune System, The Circulatory System (Heart) and The Control of Mutated Cells (Cancer).

Your level of health rises and falls between the different lines listed below.

Line Of Personal Health: This line represents you and your personal level of health. It will rise and fall throughout your life. The goal is to keep your personal level of health as close to optimal as possible.

Line of Optimum Health: In a perfect world our personal health line would match the optimal health line but since we don’t live in a perfect world we do our best to get as close to the optimal health line as possible.

Line of Symptoms: As long as all of our organs and symptoms function above this line we have no problems. The moment our personal health line dips below this line we experience problems. The problems could be ever so slight that we don’t pay attention at first and ignore them.

So the problems persist long enough that our personal health line dips below the Line of Symptoms and we start to pay attention.

The Death Line: If any part of our personal health line touches our death line we die. Plain and simple.

image from your personal health line etc 

Now let me tell you a story. We will track the health story of “Jane”, an average 40 year old.
Jane born with a slight weakness (either genetic or from her parents lifestyle) that affects her immune system.

Of course Jane experienced the regular colds and flu’s growing up but at no point did her personal health line drop below the Line of Symptoms.
Over the 40 years of her life though Jane has contributed to the weakness in her immune system by taking antibiotics, the birth control pill, not getting enough sleep, consuming too much caffeine and sugar on a daily basis, lacking beneficial good bacteria, being deficient in Vitamin D, Vitamin B and essential fatty acids just to name a few.

It’s gotten to the point where now Jane’s personal health line has dipped below the line of symptoms. Jane is tired all the time. She gets 2 to 3 colds every year, a bladder infection or two yearly and doesn’t sleep soundly.

A friend of Jane’s suggests that she try a probiotic, Vitamin D and melatonin to help boost her immune system and to sleep better. Since these three supplements address a couple of Jane’s problems (lack of good bacteria, deficiency of Vitamin D and poor sleep) Jane’s personal health line rises slightly just above the Line of Symptoms. Jane feels so much better – she’s cured!

Jane is so excited that she has been ‘cured’ – that her fatigue is gone and that she went through a winter without a cold. She decided to promote her life changing supplement regime to everyone she knows because surely it will be the life changing cure for them too.

One day Jane is talking to her friend Michelle who is also exhausted all the time and gets sinus infections on a regular basis. Since the probiotic, vitamin D and melatonin worked so well for Jane she enthusiastically promotes them to Michelle as the cure for her fatigue and sinus problems.

So Michelle goes out and spends over a $100 on supplements and starts to take them that day. The next day Michelle calls up Jane and yells at her that the probiotic she told her to take gave her the WORST stomach pains, diaherrea and she just wasted so much money.

Three weeks later Michelle calls Jane up again and demands that Jane pay her for the waste of money she spent on the Vitamin D and melatonin too because she is still exhausted. Jane’s miracle cure didn’t work for Michelle. The result is that Michelle see’s no improvement in her personal health line. Now Jane is doubting her own ‘cure’ too.

Later on Michelle starts to take adrenal support, gets IV vitamin infusions and removes dairy from her diet. All of a sudden Michelle is cured and she starts to share her miracle cure with everyone she knows.
It’s worth noting here that had Michelle stayed on the probiotic her overall level of health would have been improved. The reason she reacted that way to the probiotic was because it was too strong for her and she needed to start with a lower daily dose.

The bottom line is that the same couple of supplements used by two different people who seemingly had the same symptoms produced entirely different results.

What does that mean?

It means that taking health advice from friends, gulping down pills, potions, shakes and miracle cures is a waste of time, energy and money. It’s like trying to get a whole in one while blind folded – the odds are very much against you.

The secret to health and the secrets that all of us alternative health professionals share is that in order to raise your personal health line above the line of symptoms and have it permanently stay there is to target all areas of a your health and not just your symptoms.

When you work with me I design a personalized plan and make sure to address all of your body systems. I coach you and support each symptom as needed so we can ensure your ENTIRE body is functioning as optimally as it can. The result of this type of program is that your personal health line stays way above the line of symptoms.

There is no reason why you should be taking 3 medications to get rid of your health symptoms and then 12 other medications to ensure you silence the side effects coming from the first 3 medications and all of the potential drug interactions.

If you are ready to raise your personal health line, feel energized, without pain and get back your vitality then give me a call at 604-489-0200.

Stop ignoring the symptoms… don’t wait until your personal health line falls and you have to play catch up with your health.

In honor of your personal health I am offering a summer special on my programs. Register for my 6-week WOW! program and save 50%

Feel full until your next meal with these whole food nutrient dense snack ideas.

Feeling hungry is actually a good thing. It signals that you are in a fat burning zone. Except it’s only 10am in the morning, your stomach is growling, and you’re feeling hungry.

You are doing your best trying to watch your weight and don’t want to overdo your daily food intake limit. But you don’t know if you can make it until lunch without something to nibble on, nor should you willpower it out until lunch. You will lose and the chocolate bar will win!

It can be hard finding snacks that are both low in calories, nutritious and filling at the same time. The trick is to find a snack that has protein for energy and/or fiber to keep you satisfied. No matter if you’re in the mood for something sweet, savory, or a combination of the two, here are some great snack ideas to satisfy your cravings.

Even though you should not be counting calories each option is less than 100 calories AND the quality of the calories are all WOW! approved.

Sweet Tooth Snacks

Depriving yourself of sweets is a recipe for diet failure. Give yourself a small break every now and then to enjoy in the foods you love. Otherwise you’ll reach a breaking point and overindulge.
If sweets are what you’re craving, try the following low-cal options:

1. 1 cup of frozen grapes
2. 1/2 cup of nonfat Greek yogurt mixed with a sprinkle of cinnamon and a teaspoon of raw honey
3. 1 cup of your favorite berries
4. 1.5 teaspoons of natural peanut butter spread on ½ apple
5. 3 squares of dark chocolate
6. 1 cup of unsweetened chocolate almond milk mixed with ½ scoop unflavoured protein powder
7. 1 cup of unsweetened applesauce with a sprinkle of cinnamon
8. 1 small banana and 1.5 tsp of natural peanut butter
9. ½ cup of plain frozen yogurt
10. ½ cup plain yogurt with ½ ripe mashed banana

Savory Snacks

Just as easily, you can go overboard when munching on salty snacks. It takes a lot of will power to eat only a few potato chips. It’s better to just keep them out of the house.

So when you’re in the mood for something savory or salty and low in calories, go with one of the following:

1. 10 baby carrots dipped in two tablespoons of hummus
2. 25 pistachios (about two handfuls)
3. ½ ounce of low fat cheese and 1 cup raw veggies
4. 1 hard boiled egg and a 1 Ryvita cracker
5. 2 cups of air-popped popcorn
6. 8 olives and 1 cup raw veggies
7. 8 boiled shrimp dipped in two tablespoons cocktail sauce
8. 1 cup of low sodium tomato soup sprinkled with one tablespoon of low-fat cheddar cheese
9. 1 red raw peppers dipped in two tablespoons of balsamic vinaigrette
10. 2-3 slices of nitrate free turkey and a dill pickle

Sweet + Savory Snacks

Perhaps you’re craving a combination of salty and sweet foods. Sound good to you? Get your appetite satiated without feeling guilty by indulging in the following snack ideas:

1. ½ ounce low fat cheese with half an apple sliced
2. 1.5 tsp of natural peanut butter spread on 1 Ryvita cracker
3. 1 cup of chopped melon in ½ cup of non-fat cottage cheese
4. Trail mix made of four chocolate chips, eight almonds, and one tablespoon of raisins
5. ½ cup Greek yogurt with 1 tsp honey
6. 2 cups popcorn with 1 tsp raw honey sprinkled on top
7. ½ cup frozen yogurt with 1 tsp of chopped cashews
8. 8 ounces of unsweetened iced tea with 2 baby bell lights
9. ½ cup cottage cheese with 4 chopped strawberries
10. 1 cup unsweetened apple sauce with 1 tsp chopped peanuts

Green Light on Snacks

If losing weight is a priority for you then planning, preparing and bringing snacks with you should be a must. Especially since starving yourself is another way to sabotage your dieting efforts.

If you’re overly hungry when mealtime comes, you’ll be more susceptible to overeating. None of these 30 snack ideas sound appealing to you? Then get creative and make your own.

Contrary to what your past eating habits may indicate, wise snack choices should be part of a healthy, balanced diet.

If you are struggling with your weight, whether you feel you weigh too much or not enough, if you are tired of dieting and would like to learn how to eat according to what your body needs, call me at 604-489-0200 or contact me and let me help you reach your health goals

Beauty Is More Than Skin Deep

Today I read an article that brought me back 21 years in time.

I was a stay-at-home Mum and was raising 5 children, it was a wonderful, privileged time with them.

I was in the kitchen and tried to give my middle son a bowl of home made yoghurt, to which he said: “I cannot eat that for it makes me fat”.

I was shocked, my son was 5 years old. Where did he pick up something like this? Then I did a bit of soul searching and realized that I heard myself speak there and this is something he had seen in me. I told him at that moment that yoghurt would make him strong and give him muscles. He looked at me, took the bowl and ate it, but it taught me a valuable lesson.

Today I was brought back to that scene after reading the following article

http://www.rolereboot.org/life/details/2013-06-when-your-mother-says-shes-fat

Please take the time to read this article and if you are struggling with your weight, whether you feel you weigh too much or not enough, if you are tired of dieting and would like to learn how to eat according to what your body needs, call me at 604-489-0200 or contact me and let me help you reach your health goals

 

 

 

 

Cancer Scare Does Not Have To End In Surgery

On May 14th, 2013, Angelina Jolie let the world know she had been diagnosed with carrying the BRCA gene giving her possibly a higher chance of contracting breast and/or ovarian cancer. She made the brave decision that for her the best solution was to have both breasts removed to bring the breast cancer risk factor down and is also contemplating having her ovaries removed.

As a Cancer Coach I was very interested in reading this article and considering the agony that she and her partner must have gone through making that decision. I am not making light of that, but I am concerned that many people will see this as the choice or only decision.

There are a few things that I have not heard from Angelina or many others that should be part of the decision making and I would like to take this opportunity to bring awareness to the following;

Of all the people who end up with breast cancer the percentage of breast cancer because of the BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene is only 5 – 10% and research has shown that lifestyle and diet may have played a detrimental role. Most people contracting cancer do not carry a faulty gene, but may be affected by the environment they grew up in, their lifestyle, the kind of foods they are eating, toxins, and the amount of stress they experience, ethnicity and other factors.

Angelina’s risk of breast cancer has been drastically brought down, because of her surgery, but what about any of the other cancers, the risk for those has not changed with this surgery and stays the same unless she incorporates other changes in her life.

Actually we all need to take stock, even if we don’t have the gene, for most cancers will have the following risk factors;

  • Poor diet, lack of physical activity, or being overweight
  • Growing older
  • Smoking
  • Getting a sunburn
  • Radiation
  • Many chemicals and other environmental toxins
  • Certain hormones
  • Family history
  • Alcohol
  • stress

However we can make changes. Though we cannot change our family history, our genes and the sunburns we have already experienced, we can:

  • Change our diet, start exercising and get to a healthy weight
  • Stop smoking and drinking
  • Avoid sunburns
  • Avoid chemicals
  • Bring down the amount of radiation (have less x-rays taken)
  • Avoid stress
  • Support all that is good and beneficial

If you have been diagnosed with the BRCA gene, don’t assume that surgery is your only option. Take some time and look at all your options.

Cancer can take decades to develop and while you are still fine, take stock of what you are doing now and whether you can make any of the above mentioned changes. You don’t have to wait for a diagnosis, act now by incorporating a healthy diet and lifestyle. You also cannot rely on surgery to prevent all cancers.

In June I will be offering the 6-Step Community Cancer Wipeout Program through the NAPCC, which is a non-profit organization that supports cancer patients where they are at.

If you are just diagnosed, have active cancer or are in early remission you could benefit from this program that will run for 3 weeks, each session 3 hours long. Space will be limited to 8 people, so contact me to reserve your spot

Week one will address risk assessment

Week two looks at nutrition

Week three tackles environmental risks

You can contact me at 604-489-0200 or kitty@pro-activenutrition.ca to register for this program

 

 

5 Steps to Reducing Bloating

Your digestion is a huge part of your fat loss equation. You could follow your nutrition plan 90% of the time, work out 3-4 times per week and yet still feel bloated and heavy.

Your frustration is mounting and you are ready to throw in the towel, but before you do try some of these tips. Losing weight isn’t always about following your meal plan or calorie counting. The quality of the calories you consume is MORE important then the number of calories. It could just be that you are eating a food your body doesn’t like.

While your diet is probably not terrible, the 5 secrets below will help you improve it even more. A cleaner diet means less bloating and losing more fat each week.

Diet Secret #1: Don’t eat late
This is the most simple and effective way to ensure you give your digestive system a break. Instead of eating less food late at night, simply don’t eat late at all. Try these tips…

  • Brush your teeth right after dinner. Once your teeth are clean, you’ve put an end to your consumption for the day.
  • Change things up. If your evening routine revolves around food then find a new routine.
  • Let the habit form. The first few weeks will be tough, but soon your new no-food-late routine will feel normal.

Diet Secret #2 Avoid drinking water at meal times
Although you’ve been told you need to drink at least 8-10 glasses a day it’s best to avoid drinking at meal times. Your digestive enzymes are potent acids and when you add water or any other type of liquid to acids it dilutes them. Feel free to sip room temperature water, but if you have any indigestion, heart burn or bloating it’s best to avoid drinking at meals.

  • Drink your water in between your meals.
  • Wait 30 minutes after eating to consume fluids.
  • Avoid drinking carbonated and caffeinated beverages near mealtime.

Diet Secret #3: Load up on fiber                                                                                                                                  Most of us do not get enough fiber in our diet. This is a problem since fiber is essential when it comes to getting lean. Fiber-filled foods are low in calories and are filling, so you’ll be eating less and getting lean. However, you need to add fiber into your diet slowly otherwise it could cause more bloating and bowel issues. Try these tips…

  • Turn salads into meals. Add a serving of lean protein plus 1/2 cup of beans (chickpeas) to a large pile of greens for a guiltless meal. *Try the recipe for Sweet & Smokey Chicken below and serve it on a bed of greens.
  • Include vegetables in every meal. The benefits to eating more veggies are too many to list, so just know that your body will become healthier and leaner with each fibrous bite.
  • Fruits are a tasty source of fiber. Eat fresh, seasonal fruits every day.

Diet Secret #4: Eat fewer wheat based carbs                                                                                                           Now I didn’t say to cut out all carbs, but rather to eat less wheat based carbs. These diet secrets are meant as lifestyle changes for you to stick with long term. Eating fewer wheat based carbs is a realistic and very effective way to flatten your tummy and get rid of the bloating for good. Try these tips…

  • Choose wheat free bread and pasta instead of white or whole grain. Whole grains contain wheat which is hard to digest for more people.
  • Avoid carb-filled snacks. Instead of crackers or chips, have a hard boiled egg, a protein shake, fresh fruit or veggies.

Diet Secret #5: Only wholesome sweets
Refined sugar-filled sweets will quickly add up around your waistline. Learn to enjoy natural sweets. Try these tips…

  • Fruit is natural candy. When you stop eating refined sugar you’ll find fresh fruit to be more sweet and delicious than ever.
  • Do not eat foods that contain white sugar or high fructose corn syrup (glucose/fructose). These items are the worst for your abs.
  • Try wholesome sweeteners, like pure maple syrup, raw honey or dates in your cooking instead of white sugar. Get white sugar out of your kitchen.

Take these digestion secrets and run with them. These tips, along with a whole foods based nutrition plan will help you shed the fat pounds and improve your digestion.

I’m here to help you meet your weight loss goals, so guarantee your results by teaming up with me.

You deserve that healthy and attractive body – I can help you get it.

Call or email today to get started.

 

Recipe

This chicken has awesome flavor and is quick to make on a weeknight. Serve with a leafy green salad and a side of asparagus or broccoli for the perfect flat abs meal.

Makes: 4 Servings

Here’s what you need…

  • 4 bone-in, skin-on, organic chicken thighs
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 packet Stevia
  • dash of salt and pepper
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. Rinse the chicken and pat dry. Place in a large ziplock bag.
  3. In a small bowl combine the remaining ingredients. Add to the ziplock bag and toss until the chicken is fully coated.
  4. Place the coated chicken thighs on a broiling pan. Bake for 40 minutes.

Nutritional Analysis: One serving equals: 248 calories, 18g fat, 428mg sodium, 1g carbohydrate, 0g fiber, and 18g protein

 

 

To Cheat Or Not To Cheat…That Is The Burning Question

The popularity of a good cheat meal has resurfaced again. The phrase ‘cheat meal’ has been embedded into mainstream dieting language where just a few short years ago is what a term reserved only for body builders and those trying to put on muscle.

It’s like the cheat meal has become its own weight loss plan or fad diet. It seems like everyone and their mothers feel they deserve a cheat meal after a long hard day, a week of dieting or a 45-minute spin class.

Truth bomb #1 – sorry, but it just doesn’t work that way.

Sorry to burst your bubble! It’s time to put an end to the excuses you are telling yourself as you scarf down whatever high fat, high sugar item you are gorging on and rationalizing it as a deserved ‘cheat meal’.

In a minute I am going to give you some clear points on when it’s ok to cheat and how to decrease the impact of overeating so you can enjoy a ‘cheat meal’ without the guilt and the negative feelings associated with overeating.

Before we get into that let’s examine the definition of a cheat meal and why it’s never a good idea to cheat unless it’s planned and purposeful.

What exactly is a cheat meal?

Setting aside one day a week to eat junk food or whatever you want you take control of your cravings and eat on your terms.

This is the technical definition…

An unplanned dietary lapse in which someone fails to eat food that is on their nutrition plan and/or eats foods not in their calorie/macronutrient guideline

Body builders use cheat meals when they are dieting intensely. Let me be clear about one thing: The diet of a body builder and the diet you are on are two very different things.

If you have ever had the opportunity to know any body builders you know that they are some of the most dedicated and meticulous people on the planet when it comes to their diet and exercise routines.

They don’t cheat when they’ve a bad day, when they are tired or just because it’s Friday. They only cheat when it’s planned and even then the cheat is usually structured around a certain macronutrient ratio.

The cheat serves a purpose and has a desired effect – to help build more lean muscle mass and to give them a psychological break from the strictness of their daily routine.

Why?

When body builders diet down they generally have low muscle glycogen (energy storage in muscle cells, liver and brain) levels. They can feel sluggish and tired without the necessary stored glycogen to power through workout.

This is also the reason that so many body builders use caffeine as a stimulant before their workouts. To give them the energy that the muscles can‘t provide.

Truth bomb # 2 – you DO NOT diet or workout like a body builder so you don’t get to cheat like a body builder.

Unless you are following a medium to high intensity weight training routine for 30 – 60 minutes 4-5 times per week you have not depleted your glycogen stores enough to deserve a cheat meal.

There are certain exceptions to this rule BUT cheating must still be planned and purposeful to achieve your desired fat loss goals.

So here’s WHEN and WHY you should cheat:

1. To spark a dead metabolism from being on the yo-yo crash diet or
constant low carb dieting for months on end.

2. To replenish and/or refill glycogen stores (when you’ve low carbed
yourself to death or exercised intensely for prolonged periods of time).

3. To serve as a psychological reward for eating clean 90% of the time on the OTHER 6 days of your week.

4. You have no energy or drive in your resistance training workouts or when you constantly feel flat and can’t seem to get a good “pump”. Or you just can’t find the emotional renewal you’re looking for.

5. To reset fat burning hormones like leptin and provide a metabolic spark
for your thyroid (usually from 4 to 6 days or longer of aggressive carb/calorie restriction or maintaining super low body fat levels for a long period of time).

Truth bomb # 3- Being bored with healthy food, not planning your meals accordingly leaving you minimal choices for lunch, being stressed out, skipping meals resulting in intense food cravings or lacking discipline is NOT a valid reason for cheating.

You need to earn the right to cheat by eating clean, following your nutrition plan and exercising consistently for at least 5 or 6 days of your week if you want cheat days and cheat meals to work in your favor.

# 1 Tip To Reduce The Impact From Cheating

Research shows that when you consume a BIG meal (consisting of over 750 calories at one time – very easy to do) that exercising AFTER the meal is more helpful in expending the energy (calories) consumed at the meal.

In real persons terms this means that cheating is reserved for those who exercise intensely most days of the week and if you do happen to cheat then it’s best to engage in moderate to intense exercise after the meal for a minimum of 25 minutes.

If you find yourself with cravings, the desire to cheat a little at the end of your day or feel helpless when it comes to being able to control yourself in social situations please give me a call at 604-489-0200 or contact me

Being on a ‘diet’ shouldn’t feel like a life sentence and my clients are given permission to enjoy their favorite foods any day of the week while they still lose 1-2 pounds of fat each week. I am happy to show you how you can do this to so call me at 604-489-0200 or contact me here

7 Stay Slim Strategies

You’ve seen it happen to your friends. Maybe it’s even happened to you. You worked hard to lose the weight and have regained it in half the time it took to lose it. Yes, losing weight is hard. It’s harder to keep the weight off long-term, but maintaining a healthy weight doesn’t have to be difficult.

It doesn’t mean your life is over and you’ll never enjoy an ice cream sundae again. What it does mean is that you’ll need to lead a balanced lifestyle that includes knowing proper portion sizes, how to create balanced meals and doing resistance training.

Are you determined to keep the pounds off? If you’re ready to make the decision today, here are seven stay-slim strategies. 

Protein and Fiber

At most meal and snack throughout your day. Fill up on protein-rich and fiber-filled foods. Protein builds muscle, fills you up, and gives your body energy. More muscle equals more calories burned. If you wait to eat protein (meat, eggs, dairy) until dinner, your body may not have enough fuel the rest of the day and resort to breaking down muscle for energy.

Foods high in fiber are another weapon against weight loss. The fiber in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains keeps you feeling fuller longer so you won’t be as tempted to snack on junk food all day.

Eat Breakfast

Come morning, your body is depleted of its energy stores. Eating a healthy breakfast is the best way to replenish your body, fuel your muscles for physical activity, and keep those unwanted pounds off.

Why is this so? Without breakfast, you’ll be extra hungry later in the day. This may tempt you to grab a quick snack at the vending machine to help you make it until lunch. Come lunch, you may be prone to overeat. Going too long without food slows your metabolism and causes your body to produce more insulin. This leads to more fat storage and quicker weight gain.

Snack Before and After Exercise

About 30 minutes before a workout, eat a snack of protein and carbohydrates to fuel your muscles for exercise. As soon as you’re done with your routine, eat a protein-filled meal following your workout. The protein will help build new muscle, aid your body in burning calories, and keep your body from storing fat.

Eat Sensibly

Be picky about what you eat and drink. A food may seem healthy, but a look at the nutrition label may prove otherwise. So learn how to read nutrition labels. Watch out for excess fat, calories, and sugars and eat moderate portions. When you’re full, stop eating! Use a smaller plate at mealtime if that helps you realize when you’re full. Also, keep a food journal to track your calories, successes, and failures. Seeing the calorie count written in ink is a powerful motivator to eat fewer calories.

Drink More Water

Don’t forget about the extra calories found in drinks. Sodas, fruit juices, coffees, and alcoholic beverages are often very high in calories. Drink plenty of water throughout the day. You’ll not only avoid the calories found in other beverages, but you’ll flush your system of toxins, keep your body hydrated, and energize your muscles.

Exercise

Keep that weight off by burning more calories than you eat. Do this through physical activity. Whether walking, jogging, swimming, cycling, or dancing, it’s important that you get your recommended amount of exercise each week doing something you enjoy. If you find exercise enjoyable, you’re more likely to stick with it. Don’t have an exercise partner? That’s when your personal trainer comes into the picture.

Get Good Sleep

Most adults need seven to eight hours of sleep each night for optimal function. You also need sleep to keep your weight in check. Sleep affects the hormones that control your appetite, and a lack of sleep may lead to food cravings and overeating. If you don’t get enough sleep, your body won’t feel as satisfied after eating and you’ll be prone to overeating.

If you need some help strategizing, let me help you. You can either call me at 604-489-0200 or email me at kitty@pro-activenutrition.ca

TOP TEN SUMMER DETOX FOODS:

Have you ever wondered, “What can I eat to help my body work better?”  I have and it’s a question I get asked a lot by my clients.  Spring is a time for regeneration and renewal. It’s a time to shed those extra winter pounds and lighten up.

If you are feeling a bit bogged down by winter then try some of the foods below. Each one is beneficial for helping your body to get rid of the extra toxins you’ve accumulated over the winter months.

Parsley, not something that is usually top on my ‘let’s eat’ food list surprised me.  Did you know that it is high in vitamins A, B12, C and K, all vitamins that help to boost the body’s immune system?  It’s also a good source of iron, folic acid and beta carotene.  Adding it to your daily diet can help in reducing blood pressure, and its resulting factor of hypertension.  It is also known for helping to decrease cramps during the menstrual cycle.

Lemons, something that adds a natural punch to everyday drinking water can help you to fulfill your duty of getting in those 8 glasses a day, while also acting as a natural diuretic, flushing toxins from your system.  It also has the ability to curb bad breath.  If you’re suffering from a toothache, just a little squeeze massaged on the affected tooth and gums will do, or for a sore throat or tonsillitis.  Swap your Scope mouth wash for a few gargles with some fresh lemon juice mixed with warm water.

Beets, a vegetable that is so satisfying because of its natural sweetness can seem like a treat, while at the same time benefiting your body with its vitamin A and C, as well as a great dose of magnesium, iron and phosphorus.  They are also high in carbohydrates, which are a source of energy, but not in the processed-food kind of way that is a no-no. Beets have also been shown to guard against colon cancer and heart disease.

Dandelion greens, yep, that’s what I said!  They sound odd, I agree, but they totally rock!  They are rich in copper, phosphorus, potassium,  magnesium and iron. They are a great source of vegetarian protein too.  They’re high in calcium, even more so than kale.  Add a few cups of dandelion greens to a smoothie with your favorite fruits and you’ll have a green smoothie that’s higher in calcium than most dairy products!

Turmeric, a wonderful, colorful spice that is part of the ginger family, has the healing properties of a natural anti-inflammatory, without any dreaded side effects.  It also aids in the treatment of psoriasis and other inflammatory skin conditions.  Turmeric has been used for centuries in Chinese medicine, and found to help in those who suffer from depression.

Pineapple, it’s a common fruit that has great healing properties, and let’s face it, just tastes really good!  It strengthens bones with manganese, a mineral needed by the body to build healthy bones and connective tissues.  Pineapple helps aid in digestion.  It contains bromelain, which neutralizes fluids and reduces their acidity, as well as helping out the pancreas.  100g of pineapple has around 50 calories, is a great source of soluble and insoluble fiber, and contains no saturated fats or cholesterol.

Cabbage, a vegetable that is sometimes neglected, is a great source of vitamin C, and helps to strengthen the immune system.   Cabbage juice is a wonder-remedy for peptic ulcers, due to its high glutamine content.  Eating red cabbage can also help in preventing Alzheimer’s disease.  Research has shown that the vitamin K and anthocyanin, an antioxidant, helps with the plaque on the brain, and has been shown to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.

Cherries, well, they’re yummy, plus to boot, they’re a super-fruit!  The little red gems are packed with dietary goodness like beta carotene, about 19 times more than both, strawberries or blueberries. They contain antioxidants that help reduce inflammation with arthritis and gout, as well as guard against cancer and heart disease.  Cherries are one of the few foods that contain melatonin, another antioxidant that helps to regulate our sleep patterns, and who doesn’t love more sleep!

Cucumbers, they’re a super-crunchy, low-calorie addition to any healthy diet.  They are 96% water, helping to hydrate and satisfy at the same time, while still doing the job of flushing the body’s toxins.  They even have some beauty benefits…their high silica content helps to maintain beautiful nails, and keep them from splitting.  Cucumbers also contain properties that have been shown to provide a reduced risk of many types of cancer, such as breast, prostate, uterine and ovarian.

Watercress, is another one of those not-on-the-top-of-my-list foods, but has obviously been overlooked, as it’s one of the oldest known leaf vegetables consumed by humans…huh!  It is high in iodine, which proves to be a source of strength for the thyroid gland, and contains sulfur, which aids in protein absorption, blood purification and cell building.  It has even been used as a tonic for the promotion of hair growth.

So, to sum it all up, sometimes the foods we don’t even think about adding to our daily diet help our body in so many incredible ways. Go on, give them a try, and maybe you might even add a few top foods of your own to the list.  Bon appetite!

Super Foods. What are they and what makes them so super?

Something of a buzzword these days, Super Foods are loaded with nutritional value beyond that of other foods. With powerful benefits that range from helping you lose weight to acting as a cholesterol-lowering agent, if these foods aren’t a part of your daily diet, they should be. And don’t worry. Despite their awe-inspiring name, Super Foods are not rare, hard-to-find foods only available in exotic locales. They can actually be found on the shelves of your local neighborhood grocery market.

What is so great about Super Foods? What are some of the most popular Super Foods you should include in your diet? Are they all you need to eat?

The “Super” in Super Foods

Fun fact: Many people take daily medications to provide the same health benefits offered by Super Foods. Unlike medications, however, Super Foods have no negative side effects, are cheaper to buy, and taste good, too. In other words, your medicine doesn’t have to taste disgusting. It can taste like…well…food!

Super Foods get their name from the amazing health benefits they provide. Being low in calories yet high in vital nutrients and antioxidants, these foods are powerful enough to reduce your risk of certain cancers and heart disease, lower your cholesterol, improve your mood, reduce or reverse the effects of aging and type 2 diabetes, reduce and maintain your weight, and help you live longer.

What Makes the Cut?

Hungry for some Super Foods in your diet? It’s pretty easy. The next time you’re at the grocery store, stock up on the following Super Foods:

Blueberries. They may be small, but they are one of your best sources of antioxidants. Blueberries, and all other berries, are also loaded with fiber, phytoflavinoids, potassium, and vitamin C. Eating a half-cup of berries each day will lower your risk of cancer and heart disease and reduce inflammation. The darker the berry, the more antioxidants it contains.

Salmon. Wild salmon and other fatty, cold-water fish are high on the list of Super Foods because of their high amount of omega-3 fatty acids. Salmon is also full of protein and iron while being low in saturated fat. Eating fatty fish twice a week protects your heart, reduces symptoms of arthritis, and may prevent memory loss.

Nuts. Nuts earn their Super Foods reputation by being full of heart-healthy fats, fiber, protein, and antioxidants. Eating a handful of nuts each day helps lower your cholesterol and aids in weight loss. You can’t just go crazy on nuts, though, as they’re rather high in fat. Whether your prefer almonds, walnuts, pistachios, or pecans, enjoy some today as a snack or added to a salad.

Tea. Both black and green teas are extremely high in antioxidants. Green tea also contains an especially powerful antioxidant called ECGC. Drinking tea each day has been shown helpful in lowering cholesterol and reducing your risk of certain cancers.

Broccoli. A popular vegetable that looks like cute little trees, broccoli is an excellent source of vitamin A (beta-carotene). It is also high in vitamin C, vitamin K, and fiber. As fiber helps you feel full faster and therefore maintain a healthy weight, it’s no wonder broccoli is considered a Super Food.

Yogurt. Fat-free or low fat plain yogurt is high in calcium, protein, vitamin D, and potassium. For some added oomph, get yogurt enriched with probiotics or live active cultures, as this yogurt helps keep the bacteria in your digestive system in balance. If you like the fruity kind, make your own by adding some of the Super Foody Blueberries to your yogurt. You cannot go wrong with that combination.

Beans. It’s not just a joke. Beans really are good for your heart. The insoluble fiber in beans helps to lower cholesterol. But they’re not just good for your heart. Their soluble fiber fills you up and keeps you regular. Beans are also a great source of protein, magnesium, potassium, and carbohydrates. Eat them as a main dish in place of meat, or put them in soups or salads. Aim to eat three cups of beans a week.

Dark Chocolate. When it comes to chocolate, the darker the better. Packed with antioxidants, dark chocolate can help lower your cholesterol and improve your mood-all with a single bite. Look for the kind with more than 70 percent cocoa content.