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It’s spring! Are you ready to shed seven pounds and keep it off?

My back is better and I celebrated by taking a Zumba class on Saturday. It felt great to be dancing and I felt like I was back on track again. Now if only I could do this everyday!

This week I wanted to investigate a few obstacles that may be preventing you from looking your best and help you get back on track again.

1. Inflammation. We have been talking about inflammation for the past few weeks, and it is a huge contributor to our inability to achieve our goal weight. Inflammation can cause soreness and stiffness beyond the normal recovery aches and pains after we work out. It can also cause everyday pain. A good foundation supplement program, like Rx for a Healthier Life or Shaklee’s Lean and Healthy Kit will give the body the tools to recover not only from exercise, but also from the wear and tear of stress. 90% of us are not getting what we need from our diets, and supplementation helps fill in those gaps and more. We need more!

I offer a free 20 minute phone consultation to help you personalize your program. The Wellness Profile is a service I offer for those of you who want to you’re your specific nutritional needs now, and then we take it again 90 days later to see if your numbers have changed. It recommends what supplements you symptoms
Indicate you need and what food changes you may want to take.

2. Diet. Obviously, too much of certain foods and poor diet can prevent us from losing weight. But what we choose to eat affects our bodies in many other ways. For example, processed or “fake” foods can create inflammation. And have you ever noticed that fake foods, like Wonder Bread, it tends to melt in your mouth? Choose real foods like apples, broccoli, stone ground whole grains, quinoa, etc. that actually need to be chewed!

This week look at what you are snacking on. Is it natural? Replace those Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups with a healthy option. I make a yummy “peanut butter fudge roll” that I take with me or carry almonds, pecans or walnuts in a zip lock so I always have a healthy snack handy. Shaklee also carries some great snack options such as snack bars, meal bars, and chips that are well-balanced, food based, non GMO, gluten free and very satisfying…check them out!

Portion size3. Portion Sizes. Eating “super sized” meals can create inflammation. If you saw the movie “Super Size Me” you saw how in a short period of time, by eating large quantities of fast food, you can gain weight and do some real damage to your major organs.

This week, take a look at this portion size chart and compare the sizes and calories you may be eating now. Subtract 500 calories from your daily intake or do a physical activity that burns 300 calories and eat 200 calories less that day.

Here are some more tips to help keep portions under control:

• Start adjusting your portion sizes in your own kitchen: switch to smaller plates, bowls, and cups.
• Use measuring cups/spoons and a food scale to get an idea for how much you are eating and to learn what a portion size really looks like.
• Remember to eat high fiber, low calorie foods like fruits and vegetables to add more volume to meals to keep you full.
• Keep a food journal. Recording everything you eat will help you pay close attention to how much you are really consuming.
• Check out the book The End of Overeating by David A. Kessler

Next week we will talk about specifically what foods make us overeat, and more importantly, why!

What to do next?

- Join us this Wednesday for a Slim Meet in the SoHo area of NYC

- E-mail me to set up a time for the Wellness Program that is on special now until April 30, from $125 to $99

- E-mail me for a free 20-minute phone consultation

Live Life with Zest,

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Great news: my back is getting better! I have been seeing a great chiropractor, going for acupuncture sessions and taking boswellia (Shaklee’s Pain Relief Complex), Fish Oil and Stress Relief complex to relax my back muscles and drinking two protein shakes a day! So I am working inside and out!

The inflammation I am experiencing may put me at risk for the following killer diseases of heart disease, cancer and diabetes.

timeToday I would like to increase your understanding of inflammation and offer complementary solutions for reducing your risk of the diseases it can cause. What is inflammation? Inflammation is that throbbing feeling you get after a paper cut. Inflammation is your white blood cells coming along and attacking bacteria and then cleaning up the debris after the job is done. But, what happens is that often a wrong signal is sent to your immune system (caused by eating inflammatory foods, persistent stress, etc.) and your immune system attacks healthy parts of the body! The longer this process is occurring in the blood stream, the more probable it can lead to high blood pressure or a heart attack because it causes more damage to blood vessels. Or, it could damage the DNA of a cell and lead to cancer. It can also lead to diabetes.

With the prevention of these 3 diseases in mind, I’m taking the following supplements:

Pain Relief Complex: Bosweilia extract 1000mg, Safflower extract 150 mg. Highly potent anti-inflammatory, relieves pain in joints caused by overexertion and improves restricted movement. It also relieves back pain effectively.

OmegaGuard: A full-spectrum potency of 7Omegas -3’s and is better than food sources of fish oil. Reduces the risk of heart disease by reducing triglycerides and cholesterol. Lowers blood pressure. In a study published in Lancet, it reduced inflammation – less morning stiffness and fewer tender joints. For me, three capsules per day has significantly improved my morning stiffness.

Stress Relief Complex: Herbal formula with L-theanine 100mg, Ashwagandha Root Extract 100mg, Beta Sitosterol. It blocks the release of cortisol, and the total benefit is being alert and relaxed. Because the muscles are relaxed, I have less pain!

Shaklee 180 Smoothee: Since I am twisting and turning my joints and doing exercises, I need to recover. The Leucine in the smoothees helps me repair and rebuild quickly. They also help with weight control!

We can’t avoid some of the causes of inflammation but we can reduce the impact and the actual inflammation with some of the products I mentioned.

I hope you find these as helpful as I have!

Live life with Zest,

diana signature

yoga

Spring is ALMOST here and it is time to be active. Yay! I like to celebrate the wonderful weather by taking long walks, doing yoga, dancing, and going to the gym! I look forward to spring, because I naturally become more active which makes it easier it to lose those next 7 Pounds.

Unfortunately, there is a glitch in my plan this year — I am having back pain. The MRI shows structural issues. What am I doing for it? I am going to a good chiropractor, stretching, doing gentle exercises and limiting some of my usual activity. Even still, pain is pain! So what can you do about pain?

Eat More Alkaline Foods

Did you know that inflammation (the primary cause of pain) has a role in daily aches and pains, cancer, heart disease, inflammatory bowel disease, asthma, Alzheimer’s, high blood pressure and general health? So by shifting my diet to an anti inflammatory diet, it helps me reduce my pain, lose weight and prevent the other complications mentioned above.

Celery, Cucumber, Kale, Spinach, Broccoli, Red Pepper, Avocado

Celery, Cucumber, Kale, Spinach, Broccoli, Red Pepper, Avocado

Anti-inflammatory diets can help prevent the body from becoming too acid, which causes inflammation. When the bodys’ chemistry is too acid, our naturally good inflammation system can start to attack our joints, immune system, blood vessels etc.

So what do we want to add to our diet? Foods that make the body more alkaline after they are digested.

Each day I eat at least 3 of the 7 most alkaline foods either raw, steamed or in my Shaklee 180 Smoothee (recipe for a St. Patrick’s day Smoothee at the end of the post!).

Reduce Sugar Intake

Have you ever noticed how after eating a rich dessert, you ache? I have, and research is backing that up. In 2004, a study was published where diabetic patients were given a sweetened drink and levels of inflammation rose immediately – and lasted 3 hours!

Imagine having juice for breakfast, a bagel (which breaks down into sugar quickly) for a mid morning snack, then a sandwich for lunch, followed by maybe a little cookie for a mid-afternoon snack, and chicken and potatoes for dinner. With this kind of diet, it’s easy to see how we are keeping those inflammatory cells in the blood all day long, every day! Having the inflammatory cells in the blood for too long will damage blood vessels, the DNA of cells and the cartilage of joints (causing arthritis).

To prevent this, I’m reducing the extra sugar I eat in the afternoon by replacing Justin’s Peanut Butter Cups with a Shaklee snack bar, or a handful of walnuts or almonds that I carry in my purse.

So how do you reduce those afternoon sugar cravings in the first place? For one, be sure to eat a high-protein breakfast.

Being a busy professional, breakfast needs to be quick and convenient, so I choose the Shaklee 180 Smoothee for breakfast. It contains:

• 24 grams of Protein like in 4 eggs
• 6 grams of fiber like a bowl and a half of oatmeal
• 23 antioxidant vitamins and minerals

With a high-protein breakfast that contains fiber and a multitude of vitamins and minerals, my sugar cravings are reduced all day long.

Choose the Right Supplements

1. Organically grown Alfalfa: Natural antihistamine, anti inflammatory, diuretic and digestive aid. The tablets can be swallowed or made into a tea.

2. Vivix Liquid Dietary Supplement: Made from Muscadine grapes and clinically proven to reduce inflammation in a recent study. They took two groups of people both eating the same type of diet, and the group taking Vivix did not have the same rise in damaging inflammatory cells after each meal.

3. OmegaGuard: A full-spectrum (7 ultra pure) omega-3 fish oil that reduces inflammation and also supports brain health. Fish oils are also commonly used in patients with depression.

My healing is a journey, and I didn’t get here overnight. I will discuss this journey more in future posts! One exercise I can do that really helps with inflammation is Chi Kung. I feel like I can DO something during this healing time, and I can continue to teach.

If you want more energy, less fatigue or lose just 7 pounds, check out this link for a good way to get started:

http://dianarn.myshaklee.com/us/en/about_-wellness-profile.html

Live Life with Zest

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Happy St Patrick’s Day!

I hope you enjoy this Shamrock Smoothee recipe:

clover

2 scoops Vanilla Shaklee 180
1 handful of Spinach/chard
1/4 cup pineapple chunks
1 inch ginger root
2 oz water
Ice

a Chi Kung photo

Last week we talked about 3 major factors that make all of us at risk for heart disease – a diet lacking in fruits & vegetables, a sedentary lifestyle, and an excess of stress.  But you know that I’m not about the doom and gloom and scary warnings – I’m all about positive solutions! I have lots of suggestions for how to avoid these pitfalls.

Diet Tips

-       Incorporate fruits & veggies into your breakfast. Eating cereal? Throw some berries and bananas in the bowl. Love your morning eggs? Make a small side salad or some sautéed greens. Shaklee 180 smoothees are super-easy and nutritious, and delicious. Check them out here: http://bit.ly/1bLU2bA

-       Plan your meals ahead of time. Grabbing something last-minute sets us up to make a bad food choice. Plan ahead & make breakfast or lunch for the week, so when you grab-and-go, you’re grabbing something healthy.

-       Snack early before that afternoon slump.  If you always visit the vending machine at 3 PM, you probably can notice a habit of unhealthy snacking. Again, plan ahead! Mixed nuts make a great snack that’s a heck of a lot better than a candy bar – more filling and more nutritious, without any of the guilt.

-       Challenge yourself to eat an all-green lunch. Sandwiches are easy, but not always a healthy choice – all those carbs can actually cause that afternoon slump! I challenge you to make your lunches entirely GREEN this week. My favorite green lunch is a green smoothee (see the recipe at the bottom of this post!) and a side salad. A stir fry or medley of vegetables is great. Skip the bread and make a lettuce wrap for your chicken salad sandwich.

Walking Tips

-       Pump up your morning. You may not have time for a full workout every morning, but I think it’s great to just get your blood flowing. Do some squats or jumping jacks before you get in the shower. Do 5 minutes of stretching or yoga while you wait for your coffee to brew. Whatever you like to do to get your blood flowing works. It helps prepare you for the day and gives you mental clarity as an added bonus.

-       At the office, instead of calling a co-worker, get up and take a walk over to their desk.

-       Invite a friend on a 15-minute coffee break, and walk while you talk.

-       Run a quick errand in the neighborhood in the middle of the day.

-       Don’t just go to the closest deli for lunch – pick someplace that’s just a few blocks further away.

-       Skip the elevator and take the stairs.

-       Count your steps with a step counter – you can buy a pedometer or get an app for your phone. 10,000 steps a day is an awesome goal. Track your steps for an average day and see what you’re hitting. Then try to double it. Pick a number – 7,000, 12,000, whatever works – and challenge yourself to hit it. It can actually be fun to see how many steps you can rack up just running errands on a Sunday!

Stress Reduction Tips

-       Stress can take the forms of fun activities or a crazy work schedule – the point is, we’re just not letting ourselves rest enough. Remind yourself to pause. Give yourself permission to take breaks when you need them.

-       Start your day with a mantra or an affirmation. Here’s one that I like: “I relax in the stillness. I take a few deep breaths. Breathing in, I envision a perfectly healthy day of better food, more activity, and peace of mind. Nothing can disrupt the serenity I carry within me.”

-       Breathing is a really effective stress reducer. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, step out of the moment and take 10 deep breaths. Fill your body with calming energy as you breathe in, and feel yourself releasing your stress as you exhale. You’ll feel much better.

-       Stretching, yoga, or chi kung are great for meditation and stress relief, as well as exercise.

-       How many of us are guilty of “stress eating”? It’s a cycle – the stress brings on the unhealthy eating, and the unhealthy food makes us less able to cope with stress physiologically.  Sugar is especially to blame. Healthy food makes your body feel better, and equips you to face stress effectively.

Shamrock Smoothee Recipe:

2 scoops Vanilla Shaklee 180

1 handful of spinach or green chard

1/4 cup pineapple

1 inch peeled fresh ginger root

12 oz cold water

Ice

Do you have other ways to add healthy foods to your diet, to add more exercise in the day-to-day, or to reduce stress? I want to hear about them! I’d love it if you shared your tips with me on Facebook – http://on.fb.me/1iZDLDe

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heart-healthy

The sad fact is that today, in 2014, the typical American lifestyle puts most of us at risk for heart disease. A lot of people think that heart disease is solely genetic, but in fact 80% of heart disease is brought on by lifestyle alone. Here are the habits you need to watch out for.

  • Too much processed foods / meat / carbs / fat / sugar – there are 100 different ways to criticize the American diet, but I think they all draw the same conclusion – we don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables! A diet lacking in fruits & veggies means a diet lacking in fiber and antioxidants.  Find creative ways to add those fruits & veggies to your diet – my next post is going to be full to tips on how to do that.
  • Sedentary Lifestyle – we now know that spending more than 6 hours per day sitting down is dangerous to your heart health. We all work an 8 hour day, but it’s important to get up and walk around during the day to break up a fully sedentary period. Next time, I will share with you my solutions for how to avoid sitting down for long stretches of time.
  • Stress – Modern life is stressful and everyone copes with stress (some of us better than others). Too much stress in your life takes a serious toll on your heart health. What a lot of people don’t know is that “good” stress, like fun and exciting activities after a long day at work still add tension to your body.  We’ve all trained ourselves to keep our foot on the accelerator all the time. My next post will share some ways to help you ease up and let your body rest.

Over the next week, take a look at your lifestyle. Are you eating fruits and vegetables in every meal? Are you sitting down for hours and hours at a time? Are you giving your mind and body enough breaks from work and from play?

Look out for my next post next week to discuss my recommendations for how to solve these problems. Check out my website to browse products and supplements that can help you achieve heart health: http://bit.ly/unemfe

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How are you doing so far with your New Year’s resolutions? One resolution that is common is the one to lose weight. Unfortunately, many people set their weight loss goals too high, usually about 15 to 20 pounds, and become frustrated when the weight does not come off.
Based on human behavior studies, when someone wants to lose 15 to 20 pounds, it becomes a distant wish. However, short-term goals, like losing 7 pounds and being able to pull in one notch on your belt, wear one dress size smaller or your pants feel looser around your waist line, are more attainable.
Brad Lamm, the author of “Just 10 Pounds”, says short-terms are doable because having small goals creates a positive feedback loop that fuels your motivation. Therefore, just 7 pounds is a great approach to begin your weight-loss journey. Here are some examples of small changes you can begin doing:
  • Reduce portion sizes by 1/3.
  • Count calories. Your calorie intake will be based on your weight, height and activity level. Once you figure your calorie intake, become familiar with what that looks like, and don’t be too rigid with counting calories.
  • Change what you eat for breakfast, it will change how your whole day goes. Research shows that people who skips breakfast tend to eat more calories throughout the day.
  • Change your exercise habits. Here are two thoughts: Make a goal of walking 10,000 steps a day, and that can include, walking up the stairs at the office, cleaning the house, gardening, shoveling snow, etc.; and keep your body in motion throughout the day.

Once you begin to make these changes, you have become the person that made a commitment and kept it! Research also shows if you maintain this you can dramatically change the course of your health. According to a research conducted by the National Institute of Health (NIH) of the “Diabetes Prevention Program,” the group that managed their diet, did daily exercises, and changed their behaviorial habits vs. the group that just took their meds, lost 5% to 7% of their body weight and reduced their risk of diabetes by 58%. Think of the big health pay off for just making small changes.

A good program to start making those small changes is the Shaklee 180 Turnaround Program. It gives you one or two healthy meal replacements while you are learning to eat healthier and change your behavioral habits. Because the focus is on losing the right kind of weight, fat not muscle, the shakes keep you fuller longer, you have more energy, and you will begin to eat the right kind of food.
So if you are ready to make changes and get rewarded, join our “Just 7 Pounds Program” and become YOUR success story.
Live Live with Zest!
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You don’t have to be a football fan to appreciate the Super Bowl. You don’t have to be a fan and not know that the Seattle Seahawks will be playing this Sunday in the Super Bowl. One of the reasons why the Seattle Seahawks are in the Super Bowl is because they have a strong defense.

To build their strong defense, they had to planned, recruited the best players and built the foundation for their defense team.

Our immune system in our bodies is the same. We need to plan, recruit and build a foundation for a strong immune system that will defend us against viruses, colds, the flu, bronchitis, cancer, etc. Environmental toxins can also trigger immune system breakdown.  Every season we hear of outbreaks of avian flu, SARS, other kinds of potential epidemics. If you ever been knocked down by a cold or the flu, you usually take a cold medicine which makes you groggy and you feel fine for a few hours. I personally like to avoid being sick all together. So instead of taking some over-the-counter medicine, have you thought of building a strong foundation for your immune system?

Your plan is to reconfigure your medicine cabinet with supplements and herbs that empower your immune system. Recruit your immune defense team: Nutriferon, a shield against coughs, sneezes, sick little kids, etc. And finally build your foundation so that if a bug does try to knock you down, you standing on a strong foundation built with Vitalizer, Shaklee 180 Smoothee and Vivix.

So when you see those guys banging against each other on Super Bowl Sunday, remember DEFENSE is the name of the game! I don’t know who you’ll be rooting for on Sunday, but this is my Super Bowl team – don’t forget to recruit them for your team!

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Live life with ZEST!

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