Tag Archives: wellness

Green Power Your Day

Most Americans struggle to eat enough fresh vegetables. Dark leafy greens, like kale and spinach, are especially lacking in the Standard American Diet (SAD). According to Jill Nussinow, MS, RD, author of The Veggie Queen, “Greens are the No. 1 food you can eat regularly to help improve your health.” These veggie powerhouses are packed with calcium, fiber, folate, vitamins, minerals and they work hard in fighting cancer, heart disease and diabetes. The more immediate effect of these greens is the healing, uplifting hit of energy they provide.

Solution? Get these cancer fighting leafy delights in before you leave the house. All you need is a powerful blender and your imagination! Start with a basic recipe like the one below, or use a resource like www.simplegreensmoothies.com and build from there!

Give your green smoothie routine a week and it will become as addictive as your morning cup of Joe. This green start to your day will also go a long way in fighting overall inflammation.

Cheers!

Green Power Drink from Dr. Andrew Weil

  • 1 1/2 cups almond milk
  • 1 banana
  • 3 large kale leaves ribs remove (baby spinach works too)
  • 3 whole dates pitted
  • 1 tablespoon hemp protein powder (optional)

Drop the Excuses.

Published by Thrive Global, on Medium
Drop the Excuses

 

Roadmap to Health

Drop the Excuses.

I had decided my current circumstance, being obese, was no longer bearable. I then got to work making better choices. CHOICES, that day after day would lead me to healthy.

Unsplash: Lizzie Guilbert

I, like many of you, had spent years focusing on my circumstances. My Dad died, my Mom was sad and then angry, and often drank too much. I had really good reasons for being fat. I mean excuses. I had a suitcase full of excuses. I unpacked those, and by unpacked I mean I opened the suitcase and dumped them all out and shoved them into a corner. I do not mean I tackled resolving all of them, at that time.

I want to be clear, bad things happen, life happens, but we still get to CHOOSE our reaction (we are making better choices now). Do we further harm ourselves and become victims of our circumstances, or do we choose to persevere?

The most powerful words I have ever read in regards to my healing are these:

Many obese people have been conditioned to believe we have been traumatized, or violated, or abused somewhere along the way and thus we protect ourselves with layers of fat. I do not believe that is true for all overweight people (it is for some), but I think the way we go about understanding why we are struggling is all wrong.

If you are asked to figure out why you are obese, usually by going to therapy and digging deep into your childhood, while trying to lose weight at the same time, it all becomes so overwhelming you are almost guaranteed to fail. I know when I started talking about my loss as a child I left most sessions and drove to a fast food restaurant. When you have used food to medicate, to keep from feeling and suddenly you are feeling everything, what do you think you want to do? EAT!

My belief is that we do not have to solve the “WHY” in order to fix our current situation. For some of us there may be a childhood violation or trauma (this was the case for me when my Father died), but I don’t personally believe that has to be identified, nor fixed, in order for you to become a healthy person. Others may have ended up obese by being fed foods that lacked nutrients as a child, or by starting a cycle of restriction at a young age. Many of my clients were on their first diet as young as age 10, setting them up for a lifetime of yo-yo dieting and a poor self-image.

Personally I believe if you are nourishing your body with real, whole foods (a choice) and freed from the brain-fog induced by fake food, food dyes, chemicals, preservatives, and excess sugar you suddenly have CLARITY. You have clarity, you have energy, you have vitality, and you have a lot more time because you have freed up the daily anxiety your poor relationship with food had caused. You can then take this time to go back to the pile of excuses you unpacked and search for answers more easily because you are feeling stronger and have a foundation under your feet.

Once you are nutritionally sound and clear minded, the odds of success are greatly weighted in your favor. You don’t have to carry all of that baggage with you in order to begin healing, simply set it aside lightening your load. Your clarity also allows you to begin identifying your triggers. You are able to see what makes you want to eat, and then you can use that “SPACE” to make your choice.

I want to be clear that I am not a physician, therapist or any other type of doctor, I just know what worked for me, and what makes good sense. Set yourself up for SUCCESS by being the healthy person you want to be and making better choices, then look back so you can heal any open wounds or unresolved issues. Obviously if we do not address the baggage we unpacked we cannot move forward, but again, set yourself up for success!

When something is broken do you need to know why it broke in order to fix it? No, you just fix it. I don’t believe obese people are broken, rather the system we operate in is and I will get to that, but for now just FIX it! Start putting yourself back together, nourishing from the inside out. Today, right now, drop the excuses, take space and choose to start making choices that support the person you want to be. HEALTHY!

I am Jennifer. I am @HappyBodyFood. This is my journey from unhealthy to healthy…but more truthfully this is my journey from self-hate, to self-love.

Living My Option B


To tell people Sheryl Sandberg helped change my life sounds a little self-serving and hard to explain. Today, with the release of Option B, the entire world can now understand the powerful affect her ability to openly share her grief, and process her loss had on me. I lived her Option B real-time. I saw the pain, fear, courage, heartache, the waves of grief that brought her to her knees, and openness with which she dealt with losing Dave Goldberg, her best friend, husband and father of her children. As she shared her roadmap out of the depths of pain, I was able to step out of my own pain. She found a path, and I CHOSE to follow.

I had the great honor of reading Sheryl and Adam Grant’s book while it was being written. Each chapter left me processing years of grief I had not come to terms with, and helped me so clearly see that I was not a victim, I was a survivor. I had chosen to personalize my loss. My Mother found me in the sand box a few days after my father died and I asked her, “What did I do to make Daddy go away?” The script was set and it became pervasive in every aspect of my life. The personalization and pervasiveness of my loss, and other life circumstances that came with that loss, created a permanence that I carried with me every single day of my life. It kept me from believing in myself, from trusting people around me, and from really loving anyone, including me. It manifested in a lifelong struggle with food and addiction.

Sheryl and Adam included a small portion of my story in their new book, which is a great honor, but it is also a full circle moment. I am no longer defined by my past. I have immense gratitude for this journey I am on. I AM RESILIENT! Watching Sheryl persevere and fight for her own happiness and joy freed me from years of suffering.

I hope everyone will read Option B because we all live an Option B, and resilience is not something you are born with. Your ability to overcome life’s obstacles is a CHOICE, and resilience and gratitude are both traits you can build, expand and grow.

Today I am “kicking the shit” (as Sheryl & her friend Phil like to say) out of my own Option B. I went back to school graduating from the Institute of Integrative Nutrition, and now have a successful coaching business, Happy Body Food, where I help other women build their resilience, learn to fight for their own happiness and understand that their life circumstances do not define them, but can be used to empower them.

Each day I am lucky enough to wake up I find a day full of moments where I get to choose. I choose me. I choose self-love, compassion for my journey, and I choose to be grateful. Life happens, and yes there are times where I do not get a say in what happens to me, but I always get to choose my response, and that is a powerful revelation.

To Sheryl, Adam, Nell Scovell and all the others who worked so hard to make Option B accessible for all of us, I am grateful.

Happy Body Project: New Group

HBF-wheels-words

Announcing the next Happy Body Project May 9th, 2017

Here is what you can expect when you sign up for the

Happy Body Project:

  • A small group of women with similar goals

  • Weekly group coaching –calls Tuesday, 12 noon to 1:30 pm PST (Next group begins May 9th, 2017) SOLD OUT! Please contact me if you would like to be wait-listed for the next class.

  • You will be matched with an Accountability Partner

  • Complete Health History with me, including personalized suggestions

  • Direct access to me via texting & email

  • Secret & private Facebook Group that will provide you with 24/7 support! A place for sharing thoughts, milestones, setbacks, tips, ideas. A place to just be YOU!

  • Recipes, food shares

  • Complete confidentiality

  • And so much more!

You have nothing to lose but weight, unhealthy habits & excuses! You will gain self-confidence, power, knowledge, energy and a renewed relationship with real, whole, healthy foods! Support, guidance, healthy habits and friendships are all right here in one place! Together we will bridge the gap between who you are and who you believe you can be.

Read Testimonials Here

This is not a diet, but an introduction to living and maintaining a  healthy lifestyle. You already know there are no quick fixes, so let’s stop looking for those and just get busy being healthy people, and we might as well have a little fun doing it together!

If you want change you must be willing to make changes!

The keys to succeeding are:

  1. Commit! Just decide it is time
  2. BELIEVE in yourself
  3. Hold yourself accountable. One day at a time, becomes one month, becomes one year, and before you know it you are eating clean and living your most optimal life, a healthy life, for the REST of your life!

The Happy Body Project is a 12 week program, join today and take charge of your health!

Email me if you would like more information, or if you are simply ready to commit!

Read Facebook Reviews Here

good food. good life.

Jennifer

HappyBodyFood@gmail.com

 

How Complaining Rewires The Brain

Read the original Article by Annie Wood here

How Complaining Rewires Your Brain for Negativity (and How to Break the Habit)

By Annie Wood via Tiny Buddha

When I was about sixteen or so, one of my parent’s friends got into some trouble with the law. When we’d visit him he’d often shake his head from side to side and mumble, my life is in the toilet.

He said it many times, for many years, even when things seemed to have gotten better for him.

My life is in the toilet was his mantra.

At the time I thought it was funny, so I adopted it for myself, until one day I started to believe it. I’ve since dumped that charming phrase and gotten a new mantra.

Things haven’t magically become ideal for me since I did that. I mean, there’s this pinched nerve in my neck and those construction sounds across the street, and I could really use some more work, and…

Type of Drains

Everyone complains, at some point, at least a little, says Robin Kowalski, PhD, a professor of psychology at Clemson University.

There are different types of complainers, according to Kowalski, such as The Venter. The Venter is a “dissatisfied person who doesn’t want to hear solutions, however brilliant.”

Venting. We’re just letting off steam, right? Maybe not. I’ve personally found that the complain drain can be soul draining, not just for the complainer, but for all within earshot.

Other types you may have met along the way (or may be yourself) are the Sympathy Seekers, the I got it worse than you do, and the habitualeverything sucks folks.

The Chronic Complainers, those living in a state of complaint, do something researchers call “ruminating.” This basically means thinking and complaining about a problem again and again. Instead of feeling a release after complaining, this sort of complaining can actually make things worse. It can cause even more worry andanxiety.

No one is suggesting you be a peachy-keen-Josephine and pretend all is swell when it isn’t. What I’ve learned in my mindfulness practice is to aim to do the opposite.

In mindfulness meditation, we try to experience fully the truth of the situation, in this exact moment, and allow it to just be. Easier said than done (but what isn’t?) Still, with practice, the need to express our dissatisfaction for things not being how we’d like them to be lessens.

Can’t We Just Call Roto-Rooter?

Running with this drain analogy…

Call Roto-Rooter, that’s the name and away go troubles down the drain!

When I was a kid I loved singing along to those Roto-Rooter commercials. Wouldn’t it be cool if we could “away go troubles down the drain?” Well, maybe we can.

Most of us may have been unintentionally reinforcing the nasty habit of complaining, by virtue of… complaining.

There’s something called “experience-dependent neuroplasticity,” which is the continuing creation and grouping of neuron connections in our brains that take place as a result of our life experiences.

Neuroscience teaches us that neurons that fire together, wire together. Donald Hebb, a Canadian neuropsychologist, coined that phrase back in 1949. What this means is that whenever we think a thought or have a feeling or physical sensation, thousands of neurons are triggered and they all get together to form a neural network.

With repetitive thinking, the brain learns to trigger the same neurons each time.

So, if you keep your mind looping on self-criticism, worries, and how nothing is working out for you, your mind will more easily find that part of your brain and will quickly assist you in thinking those same thoughts again.

This shapes your mind into greater reactivity, making you more vulnerable to anxiety.

Imagine a truck driving down a muddy road. The wheels create a groove in the mud, and each time that truck drives down that exact spot, the groove gets deeper and deeper.

The truck might even, eventually, get stuck in that mud rut. But it doesn’t have to. Instead of repeating the same negative complaints, we can drive our thoughts on a different road so we don’t get stuck in that negative mud rut.

Throughout our lives we are wiring our brains, based on our repetitive thinking. We get good at what we practice.

If we worry, creating more unease and anxiety, we become stellar worriers since our brain is responding, making it easier for us to worry each time we do it, thus creating our default mode living.

Default mode living is our habitual way of going about our lives. It’s our reacting minds as opposed to ourresponding minds.

Our reacting minds are often knee-jerk reactions to something. We often say or do things that we’ve said and done in the past, as if we were in that default mode living, on automatic pilot. But our responding minds come into play when we give ourselves a pause before responding to a situation.

We ask ourselves what’s really going on and what the next best step is. It’s a clearer response in the moment that’s not linked to past responses. So, how do we respond instead of react?

4 D.I.Y. Tips – Stop The Drain!

You’re stuck in traffic and not only are you complaining out loud to the cars that are in your way, you’re imagining getting home and complaining to tell your significant other all about it. You’re practicing this conversation in your head while in the car. Your heart races, your forehead tenses up. It’s all so very annoying! What to do?

1. Catch yourself.

During meditation we soon find out that our minds will wander. The moment when we notice it wandering and we bring it back to our focus, our breath, that moment is what one of my teachers calls “that magic moment.”

The catching yourself is the practice. Also, the not judging or berating yourself for having a mind that thinks thoughts. All minds think thoughts. That’s their job.

So to stop the drain:

  • Catch yourself in a complaint.
  • Stop complaining.
  • Congratulate yourself—you’re aware!

2. Be grateful.

I’ve tried it; I simply can’t seem to complain and be grateful at the same time!

I’m stuck in traffic, but I’m grateful to have a car. I’m grateful for the song that’s playing on the radio and the sunny day.

It doesn’t matter what you’re grateful for; it can be the smallest thing, just notice. Complaining could very well be the evil twin of gratitude. Favor gratitude.

3. Practice wise effort.

In Buddhism, wise effort is letting go of that which is not helpful and cultivating that which is skillful.

In the book Awakening the Buddha Within, Lama Surya Das breaks down wise effort into four aspects, the first one being, restraint: “the effort to prevent unskillful thoughts and actions.”

Make the effort to pay attention and catch your complaining, negative thoughts before they become words.

Try it out and see how it feels. You might be surprised as to where you habitually have been putting your energy. Everything takes a certain amount of energy.

Next time you find yourself caught in a complaining loop, pause and regroup. Make the choice to put your energy elsewhere. The more you do this, the easier it gets.

4. Make a new groove.

Just the way our thoughts created that groove to make negative thoughts easier to replicate, we can create a brand new groove for pleasant feelings.

The more often we allow our minds to remember the good stuff, the easier that kind of thinking becomes.

Do you want to be the person who’s never satisfied and can always find fault in others, yourself, and the world at large? Or would you rather be someone who sees things as they are and finds a way to make peace with it? Let’s pretend it’s up to you. Oh, wait, it is up to you.

So, what do you say? You don’t need Roto Rooter to flush your troubles down the drain. Just make a new groove.

Image Credit

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