by Fit Women Staff
“Paleo works, but only if you do it”, says Robb Wolf
one of the leading authorities on the Paleo Solution, the Original Human Diet. One of the questions I can imagine “healthy” people might ask ( like I did) is why do I need to this “diet” and what will the benefits be for me? I actually asked my Cross Fit trainer, Mauricio that very question this morning and here’s what he had to say.
A Paleo Breakfast
He is a very healthy 20 something male and he noticed right away a big increase in his energy level and not bonking at mid-day like he used to. Also he hasn’t been sick with a cold or allergies in a very long time and he has been able to do more training then he used.
Personally I am in the category where I adhere to 80% of the diet and so I actually get about 95% of the benefit that Paleo has to offer. And the benefits can add up very fast.
Let’s take a look at where you should start.
1. Clean out the Pantry
We do not have self-control. PLAN AHEAD! Don’t have tempting foods in the house. Remove the bread, rice, pasta, cookies, crackers, puddings, ice cream, waffles, juice, sodas, cereals, oatmeal, artificial sweeteners, yogurt, soy sauce, teriyaki sauce, canned soups, apple sauce, noodles…all refined, packaged foods. Bag it all up, take it to a food bank or homeless shelter.
2. Go shopping
Now it’s time to fill your cupboards with food worth eating.
Buy Protein. Ideally these options are grass fed or wild caught. If you cannot find those should you eat a bagel? No! Beans and rice do NOT count as protein. Pork, beef, lamb. Trout, salmon, shrimp, crab. Chicken, turkey, duck. Round things out with some good quality bacon, omega-3 enriched eggs and some items like chicken apple sausage to help you with breakfast on busy days.
Garden Fresh Strawberry
Visit a Farmer’s Market to get Local Veggies. Shop with the season, which typically means what is on sale. Mix up the colors, lots of orange, red, and greens.
Fruit. Limit fruit to 1 serving per day if fat loss is your goal. In order of preference: Berries, melons, citrus, apples, pears. Bananas, papayas and mangoes are great for athletes post workout but not for folks who want to lose weight.
Fats. Olive oil (extra virgin) coconut, avocado (oil and whole), macadamia (whole and oil), almonds, walnuts.
If fat loss is a goal limit nuts to 1-2 oz. per day.
Spices, Herbs and such. Marinara sauce, herbs, spices-curry powder, garlic, ginger, cilantro, garam massala, chili powder, black pepper, lemon zest, allspice, cinnamon, cumin, oregano, and basil. Get at least 20 herbs and spices to keep your cooking lively. Stock up on espresso, teas and mineral water as these are your beverages of choice.
A Typical Paleo Lunch
3. Cook! The majority of your meals will look something like this: 4-8 oz of lean protein such as chicken, lean beef, turkey, pork loin or seafood.
Several servings of vegetables, either raw, steamed, or lightly cooked. Finally, round out the meal with good fats from Avocado, olive oil or a handful of un-salted nuts such as almonds, pecans, macadamias or walnuts. A lot of meals start looking the same, but everything can taste great with just a few variations.
Check out this Paleo Recipe Vault with Mouth Watering Meals.
Key points to remember:
• Eat Protein every meal and 3-4 meals per day. Eating protein with each meal I found reduces my cravings for more food then I need. • Beverages are coffee, tea, mineral water. Unsweetened, this includes stevia.
If fat loss is a goal: Limit fruit to 1 serving & Limit nuts to 1-2 oz and EXERCISE!
4. Go for a Walk or a Run or go do Cross Fit, Just Move that Body!
You were born with a certain set of genetics from your parents and all of us have genes that are meant to be active. Really active. The Center for Disease Control lists “INACTIVITY” as the third leading cause of preventable death in the U.S.
How your genes “experience” the world thru sleep, food, exercise etc, influences how those genes are turned on or off and this determines your phenotype. If you were analyzed for disease potential when you are a “Sedentary Person” vs. an “Active Person” your genes would look totally different. You are literally a different person when you exercise vs. when you do not.
So, Get outside and move. Gauge your fitness level and act accordingly. If you need help, find a trainer or coach.
5. Sleep! Black out your room. No, REALLY black out your room. No LED lights from alarm clocks, fire alarms, TV’s etc. Do not watch TV or check email for at least 1 hour before bed. Go to bed early, get at least 8-9 hrs of sleep. You should wake up without an alarm, feeling refreshed.
6. Get Your Blood Work done. So you will have some metrics to show you that Paleo is actually working on your insides, go to your doctor or clinic and order your blood work. I get mine down every year and its a fairly simple process. Read Robb’s book or ask your doctor what all of the different aspects of the blood work mean. But mainly you will be comparing your LDL Cholesterol (Bad) vs. HDL Cholesterol (Good) levels, your Triglycerides, which are a measure of your circulating blood fats, Glucose levels, Glycated hemoglobin ( or A1C), which is a measure of how much sugar is sticking to your red blood cells, and C-reactive protein or CRP is a marker of systemic inflammation.
Use your blood work as a starting point for your Paleo diet changes and then get tested again in a month or 2 to really see the overall effect your food choices and exercise regime are having on your health.
What is NOT allowed on Paleo:
Fuji Apples and Cinnamon – Paleo Snack
• Grains: bread, rice, cereal, pasta, corn, gluten-free pseudo grains
• Sugar or sugar substitutes: maple syrup, honey, agave, stevia, sucralose, etc.
• Alcohol: sorry aficionados, beer is maltose is sugar; wine is fructose
• Legumes: beans, peanuts/peanut butter, lentils, soybeans (yes, this means tofu), peas
• Dairy: milk, cream, butter, cheese, yogurt, whey
If you must have some “Cheat Foods”:
• I’d recommend one small square of dark chocolate per day
What about Alcohol? Don’t take away my drinking, you say?
Well even the Paleo King, Robb Wolf admits to having a “Paleo Margarita” occasionally. The drink consists of 2 shots of tequila gold, Juice from 1 lime and a splash of seltzer water. Its quite good actually.
Much of the problem with drinking is not the alcohol but the sugar that comes with it. A “typical” margarita or vodka & tonic would be loaded with sugar. Beer is loaded with gluten and has a significant sugar content. As for wine, opt for the dry varieties as they have less sugar.
But as with anything moderation is key and alcohol is NOT Paleo. If you must drink, imbibe earlier in the evening as far away from bedtime as possible. Alcohol turns off your growth hormone release which is Not good for your health, recovery or body composition. So if you are wondering why your fat reducing is not working cut out drinking for a month and see what happens.
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by Fit Women Staff
This year has seen a disturbing increase in the number of flu-related deaths in California, and it is a cause for concern, but certainly, not panic. The purpose of this article is to educate and arm you with simple, effective, natural and holistic methods to prevent or recover from a cold or flu. With the information presented in this article, you will know what to do for yourself, and your family to prepare for and breeze through the cold and flu season.
Of course, the best answer to cold and flu season is not to come down with one in the first place. So, the first part of this article is on prevention. There are many, many things that you can do to help yourself out; and, I’m not talking about getting a flu vaccine. I’m not a proponent of injecting disease, contaminants, and even heavy metals into my body – in the name of prevention. Medical journals have published thousands of articles revealing that injecting vaccines can actually lead to serious health problems including harmful immunological responses and a host of other infections. This further increases the body’s susceptibility to the diseases that the vaccine was supposed to protect against. For more information on the hazards of flu shots, check out this enlightening article – Flu Shot More Dangerous than Flu. There are much safer, effective, and simple steps that can be taken. In fact, they are so simple that they fall into the Duh Category. But, SOOO FEW of US actually do them. Anyway, here I go…
1] Get enough sleep:
Oh my goodness, if there’s one thing on the list that could wipe out half the colds and flus in the world, it would be everyone getting enough sleep. Our bodies are amazing at fighting off viruses and bacteria, but only if we’re in top physical condition. So, if you feel like something is trying to get you, take heed and hit the sack for some shut eye. During sleep your body can devote all of its resources to fighting off whatever is trying to take hold inside of you.
2] Eat the right foods:
Well, I could go on ad nauseam about getting proper nutrition and all that, but I’ll restrain myself for the moment. Good nutrition is the ammunition your body needs to fight anything, it’s more important than any drugs you can take. If you’re feeling vulnerable to a cold or flu, there are foods that will help you stay strong, and foods that will send out flyers inviting a cold or flu to come and party in your body. Which do you want to eat? So, when you’re feeling vulnerable to getting sick start implementing the tips below until you feel stronger again.
- First, eat warmer foods that are easily digestible. Cold foods are harder to digest and will drain your body’s resources. Things like salads and sandwiches. This also means that you should not drink cold drinks, but have them at room temperature instead.
- One of the biggest no no’s, and a direct invite for a cold or flu is to eat dairy products. Dairy creates mucus, lowers your immune response, and slows your digestion to a crawl. So, NO milk, cheese, yogurt, ice cream, yada yada…
- The right soups are fabulous. This means thin stock soups, like vegetable, minestrone, and miso soup are wonderful. A little bit of meat in your soup is ok, like fish, chicken or even an egg, but avoid red meat; it’s really hard on you, hard to digest, drains your resources, and lowers your immune response; absolutely, no cheese in your soup, ok? It’s a mucus making machine, all dairy products are.
- Drink tea, not coffee. Coffee depletes your immune system. It’s hard on your adrenals, kidneys, and heart. Green tea however is good. It is fabulous for boosting your immune system, and is full of antioxidants. Now If you really want to strengthen your immune system, one of the best teas to drink is rosehip tea. Not from a teabag though. Go to a health food store and ask for dried rosehip pieces, not whole rosehips. Why not? Because you’d have to take a hammer and smash them up, that’s why. To make the tea, boil water and pour it over about 3 tablespoons of rosehips and let steep for at least ten minutes. You can use RAW, UNHEATED honey as a sweetener which is full of antibacterial and antiviral enzymes. Good stuff.
- It’s so obvious, I shouldn’t have to say it, but oh well. NO fried foods and NO processed sugar! You might as well inject yourself with staphylococcus and save some time.
- Avoid pastries, pastas and any other wheat products, they are cold and flu factories.
- Basically, the rule is to keep your food simple and easy to digest, and for goodness sake, chew before you swallow, that way you actually get some of the nutrition out of it.
3] Drink enough Water:
Water is the most important cleansing medium for your body to eliminate unwanted garbage. A reasonable estimate would be to say that more than 75% of us are chronically dehydrated. That’s fairly astonishing, but not surprising given our busy, lifestyle. Water is life, our bodies need it to for well, everything. Do yourself a favor, and drink more of it.
4] Preventative Herbal Formulas:
There is one gentle herbal formula that I do recommend to my patients if they are motivated to gradually build their immune system over time, or take preventative herbal measures for an upcoming cold and flu season. It’s called Yu Ping Feng Wan or Jade Windscreen. I’ve taken Yu Ping Feng Wan myself for many years, and it’s been many years since I’ve come down with a cold or flu. If you want to do yourself a favor, and prep for the cold and flu season, I recommend taking Yu Ping Feng Wan beginning in August, and continue taking it throughout the season. You can discontinue when you feel the danger is passed. You can also take Yu Ping Feng Wan for a much longer term, years, if desired. It’s a great way to gradually build your immune system up. It’s subtle, but eventually, (especially if you’ve fixed your nutrition and sleeping habits) colds and flus will be a thing of the past. I do have one caveat; stop taking Yu Ping Feng Wan if you do catch a cold or flu for as long as you’re sick and then wait to start up again until after you’re well. Since Yu Ping Feng Wan is tonifying it could strengthen a cold or flu if you continued taking it while you’re not feeling well.
If you’re going to put yourself in harm’s way of a cold or flu – such as, visiting your tiny nieces or nephews or flying on a plane or must be around someone who’s hacking their lungs up – then you can take Gan Mao Ling or Yin Chiao Wan, as extra protection and prevention during your time of exposure. Either one is just as effective.
For convenience, I do have these formulas available through my website at www.inspirewellnesscenter.com
Article by: Holly Reese, MSOM, L.Ac. She is an acupuncturist, herbalist, wellness coach, food-healing expert, founder of the Inspire Wellness Center, which specializes in natural and holistic health alternatives for the recovery of chronic illness. Holly Reese is also author of Rising from the Abyss: My Journey into and out of Chronic Illness a gripping memoir that details Holly’s personal descent into and eventual rise from a nearly fatal auto-immune disorder using all the natural and holistic health methods that she espouses and uses for her wellness practice. Feel free to contact her at: email@example.com.
by Fit Women Staff
Ear of corn on plant
Have you seen the ads by the agribusiness public relations departments describing high-fructose corn syrup as “healthy” and “all-natural”?
According to the Corn Refiners Association, high-fructose corn syrup contains the same amount of calories as cane and beet sugar, is metabolized by the body the same way as these sweeteners are, and is an all-natural product.
So why are the Corn Refiners Association, spending up to $30 million to convince consumers it’s inherently safe to eat?
There is something missing from these ads if they are defending corn syrup as a natural, healthy, and safe sweetener.
Even more alarming is when the American Medical Association issued a statement explaining that “high-fructose syrup does not appear to contribute more to obesity than other caloric sweeteners” … but of course they qualified it by adding that they also said that “consumers [should] limit the amount of all added caloric sweeteners to no more than 32 grams of sugar daily.” Most sodas contain about 40 grams of high-fructose corn syrup.
Why High Fructose Corn Syrup IS Worse For You than Sugar
According to Dr. Elizabeth Parks, associate professor of clinical nutrition at UT Southwestern Medical Center, and lead author of a recent study on fructose in the Journal of Nutrition:
“Our study shows for the first time the surprising speed with which humans make body fat from fructose. Once you start the process of fat synthesis from fructose, it’s hard to slow it down. The bottom line of this study is that fructose very quickly gets made into fat in the body.”
So if you need to lose weight, or if you want to avoid diabetes and heart disease, fructose is one type of sugar you’ll want to avoid, particularly in the form of high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS).
HFCS metabolizes to fat in your body far more rapidly than any other sugar, making it the worst sugar you can eat. One of the best things you can do right away is to STOP drinking soda and processed fruit juices that are sweetened with about eight teaspoons of fructose per serving! Switch to pure water as your beverage of choice.
Read the Paleo Solution for more detailed information. >>
Need more ideas for Cooking Healthy Meals, then check out: The Healthy Urban Kitchen Cookbook The Healthy Urban Kitchen is a simple, step by step system for shopping, cooking and eating the world’s healthiest foods. It was created for busy people who want to improve health, have more energy, and prevent disease.
by Fit Women Staff
Bourbon Red Heritage Turkey
Back in the day, around 1621 to be exact, it has been estimated that the Pilgrims ate about 550 calories per person on Thanksgiving Day. Today the average person will consume about 2,000-to-3,000-calories for their turkey meal. Even though food was scarce, the Pilgrims ate locally and consumed less out of necessity. In most places in the United States, your meals come pre-packaged, prepared and sitting on store shelves waiting for consumers. You have a choice in what you buy, where you buy it and what you eat and what you throw away. Just in the United States alone our agri-business companies produce so much food that we waste 40 percent of it. That’s almost $100 billion worth a year.
On Black Friday ( which starts on thursday, Thanksgiving Day this year, in case you didn’t notice all the ads telling you this) is the ultimate push to consume more and more stuff…..The New Oxford American Dictionary defines Black (adj.): characterized by tragic or disastrous events; causing despair.
They tell us that Consumption makes the economy work. But in this day and age, Over Consumption seems to be the norm.
Try adding a few of these things to your holiday festivities:
1. Be Thankful, really. Write your Gratitude List and share it at the dinner table.
Woman performing a deadlift
2. Do your exercise routine in the morning, you know you will never have time later. Here is a Cross Fit Workout of the Day (WOD) that is a good one to do on your own. Its called ¼ Gone Bad. You do one of 3 exercises for 15 sec every minute, so basicly you sprint for 15 sec. then rest for 45 sec. as you move onto the next exercise. The exercises we did were sumo deadlift high pulls, then pushups, then box jumps on a tire. But you can substitute any exercises you like.
Do it for 15 minutes which is 5 rounds of each exercise and when you’re done your breathing hard and feeling good. Check out some great Cross Fit WOD’s.
3. Buy Local. Buy Free Range Organic if you can. Shop at Farmer’s markets and small local groceries. Remember Saturday is Small Business Shopping Day.
4. Consume Less. Put less food on your plate. In true Paleo form make it 2/3’s vegetables and 1/3 proteins and some healthy fat. Pretend to go back for seconds later. Try the Sweet Potatoes and Brussel Sprouts instead of the mashed potatoes and stuffing. Skip the gravy too.
5. Eat til you are 2/3’s full, we all know how food has a way of expanding in our stomachs.
6. Drink a big glass of water before your meal.
Paleo Pumpkin Pie
7. Try making some Paleo Sweets this year. Try the Paleo Pumpkin Pie I made last year, Or Find some more recipes here >>
8.. Consume alcohol early in the evening and then stop.Much of the problem with drinking is not the alcohol but the sugar that comes with it. A “typical” margarita or vodka & tonic would be loaded with sugar. Beer is loaded with gluten and has a significant sugar content. As for wine, opt for the dry varieties as they have less sugar.
If you must drink, imbibe earlier in the evening as far away from bedtime as possible. Alcohol turns off your growth hormone release which is Not good for your health, recovery or body composition. So if you are wondering why your fat reducing is not working cut out drinking for a month and see what happens.
Or try the Paleo King, Robb Wolf’s “Paleo Margarita” recipe. The drink consists of 2 shots of tequila gold, Juice from 1 lime and a splash of seltzer water. Its quite good actually.
Tcho Milk Chocolate
9. Have some Chocolate for dessert, because we can’t give up all our vices now can we? My favorite is TCHO, its a Local Small Business on Pier 17 in San Francisco. And they do an awesome chocolate factory tour. And it comes in MILK Chocolate this year!
by Fit Women Staff
Add a Colon Cleanse to your New Years Checklist
Like many people at the New Year, I’ll bet some of your goals include: lose weight, burn fat, get fit, get stronger or any number of things.
Well I would add to that list, Do a Colon Cleanse and here’s why. Since about 80 percent of your immune system is located in your gut, Taking special care of your gut promotes overall well-being.
Weight gain and over-toxicity is on the rise and so the trend to detoxification is growing in popularity. In our modern times, our body accumulates more toxins than its natural detoxification system (your liver, kidneys and lungs) can eliminate. Chemicals from pesticides on our foods, chlorine in our drinking water, and carbon monoxide from car exhaust build up over time and cause disease.
People are ideally supposed to have one or two bowel movements a day, but many people go two or three days between eliminations. The normal pathway for toxins to move out of the body is through the liver, which converts harmful chemicals into water-soluble molecules that can be flushed out in the urine or feces. If there’s a delay in elimination, however, those toxins remain in your system longer.
Detoxing your gut with a colon cleanse will remove these unwanted toxins from your system. People with excess weight carry tons of impacted fecal matter in their colon. This fecal matter is rotting away and leeching toxins into the blood stream and can become a precursor to illness. Doing a colon cleanse is simple and painless and helps to flush out the waste in a fast and hygienic way.
Oh by the way, like most things Detoxing does have its side effects. A Colon Cleanse will make your skin glow, give you a natural weight loss quickly, make your eyes white, and make you feel young again..need we say more..
Be careful in what kind of cleanse you chose. I have personally started a Colon Cleanse with a company called Blessed Herbs. A friend recommended this cleanse to me after she successfully completed her 9 day detox program. This cleanse removes something called Mucoid Plaque, which builds up after years of eating on the walls of our intestines. This plaque greatly lowers our ability to absorb nutrition and makes our bodies much more toxic.
This cleanse has 3 different levels for you to choose. I chose the Best Option which is a liquids-only five day intensive colon cleanse, intended to remove as much of this plaque as possible.
The herbs is the cleanse include: Digestive Stimulator™: Cape Aloe leaf, Aloe Vera leaf , Cascara Sagrada bark, Triphala† (Amla fruit, Chebulic Myrobalan fruit, Belleric Myrobalan fruit), Chinese Rhubarb root†, Barberry root, Dandelion root†, Fringe Tree root bark, Meadowsweet aerial parts†, English Plantain aerial parts†, Ginger root†, Fennel seed†, Peppermint leaf†, Fenugreek seed† and Licorice root†
Toxin Absorber™: Psyllium seed husks†, Bentonite Clay, Apple pectin, Ginger root† or Peppermint leaf†
Blessed Herbs has been a family owned and operated medicinal herb business in Massachusetts since 1985. They only work with wildcrafters and organic growers who they personally know and who harvest from pollution free areas at the height of their potency and with regards to continuing a sustainable balanced ecology. Their certified organic growers farm without synthetic fertilizers, herbicides or pesticides and take care to cultivate their soil.
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Here is a quote from there website; “Why choose Blessed Herbs detoxification programs? We’ve been a trusted herbal resource for over 25 years. In a world of online hype, anyone can form a company overnight, employ some slick marketing techniques, and masquerade as a legitimate company. Beware the “snake oil” salesmen.” This is so true, be careful what you buy and what you put into your body that might be masquerading as any kind of program.
Healthy living starts with a healthy diet, and exercise and then with consistent action towards total mind-body wellness.
[ As a disclaimer: In regards to Blessed Herbs, I have become an affiliate for them which means, when you click through and buy any of their products, I receive a small percentage of the sale. This payment allows me to keep writing this blog and articles such as these and it also makes us all aware of good independent companies who can give us the wonderful variety of sourced local products that we desire. In addition, I only promote products or companies, that I have personally used. ]
SAVE 25% off all BLESSED HERBS Products: Use Coupon Code 2013 – Expires 1/15/2013