3 Ways to Reboot Your Metabolism to Lose Weight and Feel Great

Do you remember what it was like to be able to eat anything you wanted to? Maybe, if you’re very, very lucky, you still can! But if you’re like most of the 40+ year old crowd I know, myself included, your metabolism has changed substantially.

I remember waking up and eating a bagel and cream cheese for breakfast without a second thought. In between meals, if I felt like it, I might grab a handful of M&Ms or some potato chips. Pizza for dinner with the children was not an uncommon occurrence. When it came to food, I was bulletproof. I was living the nutritional equivalent of a life without consequences. Then, sometime after I turned 50 the bottom, or my bottom to be more precise, quite literally fell out.

I woke up one morning and found my breasts on my chest and my butt on my thighs. Equally frustrating, my clothes weren’t fitting me like they used to. Things that I used to wear with no problem were now tighter around my derriere and thighs. The sleeves were pulling around my upper arms. UUGH! Time was marching on. I was getting older and gaining weight. It was as though my formerly compliant body had developed a mind of its own.

My activity level was the same. My diet, including those bagels, pizza, and chocolate, remained consistent. I had learned how to manage healthy eating with splurge days. But something else was definitely going on.

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The relationship between stress and our physical health

There exists an absolutely indefinable relationship between stress and our physical health. Of course we always say that a ''healthy body is a healthy mind'' and vice versa, but today's rampant situation of stress which is mainly considered a mind issue, needs to be addressed maybe more on the physical aspect as well. In other words I'm actually trying to promote physical exercise.

Most people who are health fanatics and exercise freaks swear by their fitness regime as the ultimate stress reliever. I somehow being the lazy creature that I am, have almost grudgingly started agreeing with them. Watching this increasing focus on the importance of exercise, my own perceptions of its importance have changed. This is not only because I started enjoying my own personal fitness routine, but it has also given me a chance to research on the various benefits of exercise as a conscious stress reliever.

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Get Your Glow On With These Beauty Foods

Open a magazine or turn on the television and you’re bound to see advertisements for lipstick, anti-ageing creams and other magic elixirs that promise youthfulness, beauty and radiance. But if you’re here, reading this article then chances are you’ve discovered that these ‘quick fixes’ don’t build the long-term beauty that you are seeking in a natural and holistic way. What does build beauty is a balance of daily diet and lifestyle choices and attentiveness to mind-set, outlook and self-perception. Real, beautiful results come from ordinary, everyday actions that have the power to affect a dramatic overall change in the way you look and feel.

I continually hear from women just how important there skin is to them and the concepts around beauty nutrition, that is, the foods and nutrients that directly support and enhance our beauty by defending, repairing and strengthening it – and healthy vanity or our innate desire to look and feel beautiful are so relevant in our lives today. Our skin can literally ‘sell’ us, as a first impression is often everything!

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Is Feeling Cared About Important?

Take a moment to call to mind the sense of being cared about.

Who Has Cared About You?

The Practice:
Is Feeling Cared About Important. 

Why?

Everyone knows what it’s like to care about someone. Remember being with a friend, a mate, a pet: you feel warmly connected, and want him or her not to suffer and to be happy.

On the other hand, you’ve probably had the sense, one time or another, of not being cared about. That you didn’t matter to another person, or to a group of people. Maybe they weren’t actively against you, but they sure weren’t for you.

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Summer Fruits You’ll Love for Their Incredible Health Benefits and Tempting Tastes (Including 3 That Are Surprisingly Healthy!)

What fruits are in season in summer? And how can they benefit your health? Learn about summer fruits that are naturally delicious and bursting with benefits.


Ah, summer. The temperatures heat up, the days get longer, and activities abound. Fresh fruits can help you survive (and thrive!) all season long.

Summer fruits give you energy and nutrients your body needs, help cool you down and stay hydrated, and can even help protect you from the sun.

And overall, fruits have been found to be spectacularly effective in treating and preventing a variety of health conditions.

For example, they have been found to help reduce heart disease. The province of North Karelia in Finland convinced local dairy farmers to grow berries on some of their pasturelands to increase fruit consumption and improve the health of its citizens.

By replacing animal-based foods with berries, along with other healthful changes, in only one generation, the region went from having one of the highest rates of heart disease in the world to one of the lowest. In a population of 170,000 Finns, cardiovascular mortality dropped by more than 70% — an unparalleled achievement.

Impressive! But that’s not all… Fruits have also helped patients all over the world lose weight and lower LDL (bad) cholesterol levels. And contrary to popular belief, fruits can reduce your risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

Not to mention, fruit is naturally sweet (no added sugar needed) and oh so delicious — whether enjoyed on its own or in a smoothie, salad, dessert, or another dish.

Why Eat Fruit That’s In Season?

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Reduce Painful Experiences

Are you feeling unneeded pain?

The Practice:
Reduce painful experiences.

Why?

Painful experiences range from subtle discomfort to extreme anguish - and there is a place for them. Sorrow can open the heart, anger can highlight injustices, fear can alert you to real threats, and remorse can help you take the high road next time.

But is there really any shortage of suffering in this world? Look at the faces of others - including mine - or your own in the mirror, and see the marks of weariness, irritation, stress, disappointment, longing, and worry. There's plenty of challenge in life already - including unavoidable illness, loss of loved ones, old age, and death - without needing a bias in your brain to give you an extra dose of pain each day.

Yet as on a prior JOT explored, your brain evolved exactly such a “negativity bias” in order to help your ancestors pass on their genes – a bias that produces lots of collateral damage today.

Painful experiences are more than passing discomforts. They produce lasting harms to your physical and mental health. When you’re feeling frazzled, pressured, down, hard on yourself, or simply frustrated, that:

  • Weakens your immune system
  • Impairs nutrient absorption in your gastrointestinal system
  • Increases vulnerabilities in your cardiovascular system
  • Decreases your reproductive hormones; exacerbates PMS
  • Disturbs your nervous system

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Using Yoga as a Stress Reliever

The exact counterpart of stress is of course relaxation. There are so many ways to reach a level of relaxation so that stress isn't a bothersome issue in our lives.

 

In the daily humdrum business of our existence the stress response occurs naturally. During ancient times stress existed in a miniscule fashion of course compared to today's situation. It also had very different reasons. People were hassled and stressed mainly due to life threatening situations by predators, etc. In today's day and age stress is triggered through everyday situations at work, at school, at home, in relationships, or there could be a competitive situation in a game or even living up to the Joneses could trigger stress.

 
 
THE STRESS RESPONSE VS THE RELAXATION RESPONSE
 
Stress is coloring everyone's lives now and In order to counter the pervasive stressful demands on our lives we need to slip into the relaxation mode through meditation and yoga. These according to me are the easiest and most commendable ways to counter stress. I personally believe very strongly in the mind body connect. I know that a relaxed mind leads to a healthy body.
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Why It is More Important Than Ever to Face the Uncomfortable Parts of the Cleansing Process

Whether you are motivated by the onset of bikini season or the calling of your next level of spiritual growth, dietary cleanses are back on the collective agenda. When the idea of a cleanse becomes attractive to you, it is time to purify. Usually this will cut out all wheat, cane sugar, alcohol and caffeine in your diet to allow your body to repair itself and heal.

 

After a couple of decades of studying nutritional and dietary wellness, I found myself at about a 70/30 percentage. 70% of eating for the nutritional benefits of my body and 30% guilty pleasures and recreational eating. I was perfectly happy with that ratio until just recently.

 

Something shifted and I felt a strong pull to revisit eating salad for dinner and moving away from the need to cook my veggies. While I’ve indulged in a little vanity in my day, this inner calling was not about the approach of bikini season. Though I do consider losing a few extra pounds a plus!

 

Many people do not realize that the fear and resistance that comes with dietary changes or starting a cleanse, is not as much about giving up the foods they love. It is the fear of re-experiencing the repressed emotional pain that remains below the surface is kept in place by the junk food we consume regularly.

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Creating Mindful Eating Habits

Keeping up with a modern, fast-paced lifestyle can leave little time for tuning into your needs. You’re constantly moving from one thing to the next, not paying attention to what your mind or body is truly craving. Practicing mindfulness can help you become aware of those needs. When mindfulness is applied to eating, it can help you recognise your patterns and behaviours, while bringing attention to bodily cues associated with hunger and fullness.

 

The body carries a lot of knowledge and information, so when you apply mindfulness to the eating experience, you can start to make conscious choices, instead of falling into automatic—and oftentimes emotion-driven—behaviours. Once you become aware of these habits, you’re better equipped to change your actions.

 

With some basic guidelines in place, try putting mindful eating into practice. Here are some tips to get you started.

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It’s Pitta Season – Go Jump in a Lake!

We’ve already suffered through a few (thankfully short) heat waves with high humidity here in the Northeastern US, and jumping in a lake is something I’m looking forward to very much. That’s Lake Michigan above and I’m headed there in just a few short weeks. I can’t wait!

 

Summer is Pitta Season, according to Ayurveda, and Pitta dosha is all about HEAT.

 

Knowing some basics about Pitta dosha can help us stay healthy (and cool) during the hot summer months.

 

Ayurveda’s seasonal calendar revolves around the three doshas–Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. The doshas are forces or energies comprised of the five elements–space (ether), air, fire, water and earth that make up our human physiology. The same elements that are in nature are within us, as well.

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Reducing Stress with Mindful Eating

Our stress levels and our moods keep changing all the time. We feel that we can alter our moods by eating what we enjoy, mainly a craving for sweets settles in whenever we are upset or feeling stressed. You indulge in sweets and feel immediately satisfied, but this could also be followed by  a bout of irritability experienced due to a sugar crash following the binging.

 
Research in recent years tells us that just as eating certain foods have a certain impact on our moods , we need to monitor our food intake very carefully as this impacts our stress levels in a very major way. 
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Different Ways To Reduce Stress

Since stress seems to come from so many avenues, so does stress relief. There are so many ways to handle it. Most people believe in a certain particular and personal favorite strategy for stress relief, but in my opinion the most efficient way would be to create an overall effective plan that includes many different ways of reducing stress instead of a particular favorite and suitable plan that would deal with stress from one's own individual angle.

 
CLEAR THINKING STRATEGY
 
Bringing clarity to the mind is by far the most important way to eliminate stress. When the thinking is clear in our heads it is only then that we can take the most sensible and beneficial decisions for ourselves. So keeping the mind uncluttered and clear is our best bet in life.
 
REVERSE THE STRESS RESPONSE
 
If you are familiar with the concept of reversing the stress response you start thinking more clearly and you can actually avoid the negative effects of chronic stress. 
 
Mastering stress is an art that can be learnt. Being a master craftsman at this art is what is your real key to leading a beautiful life. Being a mastercraftsman at this one is your key to leading a beautiful life.
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Improve Your Mental and Physical Health With The Power of Laughter

Are you in need of a good laugh? Few things are more beneficial to a person’s overall well-being than laughter. In fact, the benefits of laughter extend to better mental health and is an indicator of better physical health as well.

 

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5 Benefits of Turmeric, Ayurveda’s Golden Botanical

Turmeric (a.k.a. Indian Saffron) is a relative newcomer to American spice racks, but it’s been a mainstay in Indian cooking—and medicine—for thousands of years. The twisty root that gives your bowl of curry its bright, yellow color and distinctive flavor also holds a place of honor in traditional Ayurvedic medicine.

 

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The Water of Life - Your Most Important Daily Practice

Water is magical. It sustains life. It exists simultaneously in three seperate states. It has been a part of human ritual and religion since the dawn of time. It covers the majority of the world and it comprises the majority of each of us. In a very real sense, water is where the physical and the spiritual meet. It is indeed aqua vitae - the water of life.


At this point in my life (especially now that I’m post-AARP) I have a profound appreciation for my good health. I call it feeling “star spangled”! You know what I’m talking about: energy is flowing, eyes sparkle, thinking is crystal clear, digestion is running smoothly, free from illness, and joints are pain-free as though they’ve just been WD-40’d.

 

When I’m in this state, I look and feel at least 25 years younger. I feel as though I’m glowing from the inside out. I can easily connect to my inner guidance, my compassion is endless, my energy is boundless, and my joy and positive attitude are infectious. It’s a fantastic feeling. It’s the way we’re supposed to feel.

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Resting for Better Digestion

Resting for 15-20 minutes after a meal is a great practice that Ayurveda encourages.

 

Resting for Better Digestion

 

Approximately 60% of our daily energy goes towards digestion. If we rest for a bit after eating, our body can perform this important function more efficiently – rather than sending the energy elsewhere – to the brain and other organs needed to do things like read, write, watch TV or exercise.

 

Did your mother always tell you not to go swimming after eating? Mine did – and for years I thought I would get a cramp and drown if I went swimming too soon after a meal. My over-reaction created more anxiety in an already anxious child. But Mom was definitely onto something.

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The Microbiome: How to Talk to Your 2 Million Genes

The term “microbiome” has become popular in the last decade, and most people now realize that their bodies are populated by an enormous quantity of microbes. Taking every location from the skin to the mouth to the intestinal tract into consideration, the microbiome weighs around 3 lbs., roughly the same as the human brain.

The radical importance of keeping your microbiome balanced and healthy is just beginning to dawn on medical science and biology. If you took a snapshot of a tiny portion of your digestive tract, it would be teeming with an array of life forms almost beyond comprehension (including bacteria, viruses, bacteriophages, archaea, fungi, yeast, etc. Since it has long been known that we can’t digest food without the aid of the so-called “flora” in our intestines, the microbiome didn’t spring out of nowhere. What wasn’t realized until recently, however, is its staggering extent.

 

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Eating With a Beginner's Mind

“In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities, but in the expert’s there are few.”  Shunryu Suzuki


In our culture we spend a lot of time talking about WHAT to eat, and not as much focus on the HOW of eating. Watch a baby try new foods for the first time and you can learn so much about eating with a beginner's mind. A beginner's mind is something we are born with and later on rediscover on a more conscious level. It is the mind that lets the knowing self fall back and a more curious and willing self emerge. Here are some insights of the last three weeks introducing new foods to Olive. 

  

Variety is instinctual

Olive is like any other baby in that she fixes her attention on color, which is why I try to prepare foods different in color from one another. One day her spoon has red from beets and the next day there's green from spinach. I've noticed she tires of something after I've given it to her three to four times in a row. Instinctually, we like variety on our plate. Most of us don't live in the wild Amazon with exotic plants all around us to forage. In our industrialized world we tend to eat the same thing day after day, missing out on a variety of fruits and vegetables that provides vital nutrition. Variety in the diet has beneficial upstream effects. For example, the Harvard-based Nurses Health Study, one of the largest and longest studies to date, showed eating a variety of fruits and vegetables can lower the risk of cardiovascular disease and stroke (1).  To improve the variety in your diet, try this exercise (I just took part in this with a nutrition practice group): see if you can eat 50 different foods in one week. If you have a smoothie every morning, that's fine, but you can only count the ingredients in it once. 

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To French Toast or Not to French Toast?

For my birthday this year I was treated to breakfast at one of my favorite seaside restaurants.I find that when I’m in a birthday frame of mind, I feel that I should eat and do what I want. Even if it is outside of the list of things that keep my well being intact. So I ordered the French toast! It was freshly made using large slices of artesian bread and house made whipped cream. It was outstanding. The chemical rush of sugar overload was surging through my body and mind.

 

At about the half way point, I started to feel nauseous. So nauseous that I was afraid that one more bite would result in literally needing to vomit. I stopped eating, and the sugary euphoria started to be replaced with sluggishness and a feeling of regret that I had ordered it. The small child inside me still believes that sugar it the ultimate treat. “She” had ordered breakfast. Not the health-conscious woman seeking vitality and a clear mind. Herein lies the conflict.

 

At this stage in our lives, seeking pleasure in the very temporary euphoria of a sugar rush will derail us from all the things that are important to us. People often get depressed or sad over the idea of giving up dietary guilty pleasures for health or weight loss reasons. They feel that one of the greatest joys in life is being taken away. The second their willpower is compromised, they go in the polar opposite direction and binge on the foods that they know will hurt them. We need to redirect our focus on the pleasures that are healthy and life sustaining.

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7 Ways to Improve Your Mood Through Diet

Pretending that food doesn't matter to health is at best denial, at worst a serious delusion. But we have all been there when we have reached for a sugary snack when stressed out or feeling grouchy. We had that fleeting moment of satisfaction followed by the inevitable blood-sugar crash, with added irritability to boot. Not nice! Well, I am here to help and I am going to help you improve your mood with these 7 tips.

1. REPLACE PROCESSED FOODS WITH FRESH ORGANIC WHOLE FOODS

Our bodies are extremely clever: when we try to feed them something that is processed, they recognise that they're eating something but cant quite figure out what it is, because its missing so many nutrients and its molecular structure has been altered. So, to make up for the missing nutrients, our bodies have to tap into our own reserves and they end up taking minerals from our blood and bones. This is obviously not a sustainable way to eat because our nutrient reserves need to be replenished and if all we do is eat processed foods then pretty soon we mill find ourselves malnourished and on a slippery slope to irritability and illness.

blueberry smoothie


2. EAT MORE SOLUBLE FIBRE

Fibre helps to slow down the absorption of sugar in your blood stream into your body and therefore lessens those dreaded mood swings. Oats, brown rice, barley, apples, pears, carrots, beans and sweet potatoes are good sources. Avoid processed grains like white rice, white pasta or white bread, which have been stripped of their fibre.

3. REPLACE COFFEE, SOFT DRINKS & BOTTLED JUICES

... with water, herbal tea & fresh juices

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