Friday, May 30, 2014

Extreme Exercise and Weight Loss - How Beneficial Is it?

Recently I was in a discussion about successful weight loss programs - what works, what doesn't, are supplements necessary, do weight loss products teach anything about lifestyle change? All are great questions...

I agree with those who advocate lifestyle change in food choices is the way to go... if people are conditioned to open a box of "weight management" meals, or simply heat up a frozen weight management does not teach sustainable healthy living choices. Often times the "meals in a box" are laden with artificial ingredients, and for low-fat items - artificial sweeteners are likely on the label to make it taste good.  Short term weight loss...long term memory loss, is my blunt take on the effects of artificial anything.

Some cite that those wanting to lose weight should embrace running, bootcamps...

For the very out of shape person - let's be honest...three days of not being able to walk after one of these extreme bootcamp that motivating? Are you ready to go back the next day? I am sure there are "easy starter" bootcamps - but what I hear from my friends that participate in bootcamps...they are ANYTHING but moderate.

Extreme sports - they are fine for the conditioned athlete and fairly healthy person, but for those in poor health - whose cells are already deficient in oxygen - there is risk in additional oxidative stress on their bodies from extreme exercise. In contrast, WALKING is a great form of exercise - for any age and any level. Adding walking poles increases the cardio and upper body workout. Start with a walk around your home, or in your home...and go a bit further as your body can manage.

As one who has read and studied a number of books on healing from cancer and cancer prevention...extreme sports do not help a body heal on the celluar level, which is what someone very much out of shape and in poor health, we can assume, is in need of. Two authors who've voiced concern re: extreme sports for cancer survivors are Russel Blaylock, neurosurgen, Raymond Francis M.Sc. The topic here is EXTREME, as Blaylock also stresses the need for exercise.  Mountain climbing, running marathons or participating in tri-athalons...if your body is healing from cancer, let it heal. If you are overweight ...ease in to it. You can put one of these sports on your bucket list of aspirations...prior to my weight loss, I would not even consider these things. Well, and still don't, 80 lbs. less of me later...

As a person with atrophied toes/weak foot - bootcamp is not a fit. For the many who have physical impairments - learning to eat whole foods (primarily an alkaline based diet) and simply walking, or picking up a hula hoop!, will help one make great strides in losing weight. The alkaline food focus, by the way, will help your body heal and restore on a cellular level.

EXCERCISE IS IMPORTANT! To be clear, I don't want anyone to get the idea that I am stating there is no need to exercise or sweat.  Light to MODERATE excercise is definitely good for the body, and obesity is definitely linked to disease, such as breast cancer.

Regarding supplements....our whole food supply, many nutrition and medical experts agree, are not of the same quality as they were 100, or even 50, years ago. This includes organics, although I've read you do benefit from over 40% more nutrients from organic produce.  Many renown experts concur that nutrition supplementation can definitely benefit those striving for weight loss. As a doctor friend of mine says, we are an "overeating, malnourished society". Many are fortuante to be able to find a nutritionist or naturopath who can run tests to determine specific deficiencies.

Arbonne, just this month, released two evolutionary products targeting weight management - and there will be those who question the need. "Just eat vegetables and eliminate ALL processed foods."  Easy to say, difficult to do - especially in our fast paced world.  (been there....oh wait, I still am!)

Because I do consult with a number of people past age 60, several who are at this point in their life, not that mobile, I can teach them to change their eating habits, and these evolutionary products can be of help in stabilizing blood sugar, lowering cholesterol, etc. 

The Mayo Clinic holistic department was commissioned by Arbonne to conduct clinical trials - and the results revealed positive benefits to patients. Arbonne also had the products tested by consultants. This video provides feedback from several in the trial run.

My wish for everyone is that you become healthy enough so that you CAN participate in a boot camp, marathon, or whatever is on your bucket list, without taking your breath away, or feeling like you have been run over by a MACK truck. As in all areas of life, moderation is key, unless it is your prayer which you can go extreme...and not experience ill effects.

May you feel great, look great, and live great,
Rita S.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Glucomannan Fiber and Green Coffee Bean Extract - Evolutionary!

Back in 2010 my blood sugar numbers were borderline - but I resolved that with a big change in my eating habits. This was not easy to do, it took a lot of discipline. I want to share specifically two new products Arbonne came out with two weeks ago that have ingredients to help control blood sugar, insulin production, and increase metabolism.

A brochure is available which I would be happy to email details and ingredient list - feel free to contact me!

The new Evolution product line are listed in the new catalog for weight management. Arbonne paid the Mayo Clinic to test both products in clinical trials on patients...and Dr. Brent Bauer of the Mayo Holistic & Alternative Medicine Department reported positive benefits to the patients that tried these products, when I attended the training conference in Vegas May 7-9.

The first product is Evolution ThermoBooster. It promotes THERMOGENESIS - which the Mayo Clinic refers to in this non-Arbonne related article, as NEAT (non-excercise activity thermogenesis). Simply put, from my understanding, thermogenesis increases heat in the body to promote an increase in metabolism and the body's ability to burn fat.  

The Evolution Full Control product contains the fiber glucomannan - and in this article blood sugar expert, Dr. Mark Hyman, writes, "soluble fiber can help lower cholesterol, blood sugar, and insulin, prevent cancer, balance hormone levels, remove excess estrogen and reduce the risk of breast cancer, make vitamins and minerals, provide food for the colon cells, and more. So it’s easy to see just how crucial soluble fiber is to good heath!"

"Glucomannan is an ancient fiber source that can help you lose weight, lower your cholesterol, reduce your appetite, and lower your blood sugar more effectively than ANY other fiber."

If you, or anyone you know, is struggling with maintaining blood sugar levels at acceptable, healthy levels - please feel free to pass along the information on these two new products. I encourage anyone to scrutinize and discern for themselves, the information provided in the linked articles and this blog. 

Many people have already been reaping the benefits of weight loss, lowering cholesterol,and reversing type 2 diabetes with Arbonne Essentials...and Arbonne has raised the bar in health and wellness by provoiding these new EVOLUTIONary pure, safe and beneficial products.

If you want to work on lowering blood sugar on your own - my biggest tip, that worked for me, is to CUT THE GLUTEN/WHEAT and eat lots of green plant based foods! Eliminating most processed foods from your diet is also key to reestablishing healthy blood sugar numbers.  

Wishing you the best of health so you can feel great, look great and live great!
Rita S.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Does Gluten Make You Feel Bloated & Moody

Myself and a number of others started a 30 Day Summer Slimdown this past Sunday. Several have already lost 5 lbs.! I am super proud of them.
Our challenge eliminates the top 7 allergenic foods and does not allow artificial ingredients of any kind.
What are we eating? Well, right now I am having a paleo strawberry rhubarb crumble which I made with coconut palm sugar - which keeps the glycemic level low. YUM!   My lunch started, however, with a plate FILLED with organic spinach, cucumber, red bell pepper, some purple cabbage and sunflower seeds, with an organic grilled chicken breast - all dirzzled with a squirt of lemon and bit of olive oil.  I am FULL! And the best part is I am full of nutrient dense whole foods.
Today I thought I would call out gluten.  You don't have to eliminate 7 allergenic foods at one time...seriously. To lose my first 62 lbs. I actually cut way back on two things - GLUTEN and we stopped buying jugs of pasteurized milk and low-fat yogurt (made to taste good with artificial ingredients).
Do you feel bloated, moody, maybe your brain is in a fog half the time? Do you have chronic pain in the joints? Acne or eczema? High cholesterol?  What if I told you that eliminating gluten for just 28 days could change your life forever? Wouldn't it be worth it?

Yes, you can get tested for gluten allergies, but these tests do not pick up on sensitivities.
Self-diagnosed gluten sensitive - 3 years ago I lost 85 lbs and have kept 80 of it off. I started my own journey cutting back on gluten (even gluten free skin care) - first 50%, 70% and not missing nearly 100%, but once in a while I have  a piece of wedding cake or special occasion cave. If someone asks me how I know I am gluten sensitive - I explain I don't eat it for 28 days. Bring gluten back in and tune in to my body...the nose immediately runs, the knees ache and creak...yep, that is gluten's immediate effect on my system.
I did not exercise to lose the weight, however, I also cut pasteurized dairy milk and we have gone 80/20 with an alkaline -based, anti inflammatory lifestyle.
I am no longer borderline type 2 diabetic, joint pain is gone, no acid reflux - beyond the age of 50 I feel anything BUT over the hill.  I am not on a single med and my doctor said I took 30 years off my age when I dropped that 85 - yes, I feel like a new woman and am thankful for my regained health everyday!
I want people to know you don't need to have Celiac to cut the gluten...if you just want to feel better - CUT the gluten. And seriously look at the over processed dairy and incorporate more and more fresh foods into your new way of eating.
If you are in such poor health that you can't walk, I want to encourage you in adopting a gluten free lifestyle, as it can definitely transform their life. Learn to listen to your have the power to reclaim your health if you make up your mind to do so. And it certainly helps to be in prayer and ask God to help give you the willpower and stick-to-it-ness to stay with the journey.  Getting healthy is one of the most unselfish things you can do for a loved one..I wish you the best, and pray you will be sustained.

May you feel great, look great and live great!
Rita S.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Strawberry Rhubarb Smoothies!

It's rhubarb time!!! I am not a fan of rhubarb. I have never warmed to its sour taste, but when the neighbor offered I accepted because I know it is good for you. High in vitamin C and dietary fiber, and a great source of calcium!
As I was contemplating what I could do with my bag of rhubarb - seeing that I am on a gluten/sugar free (and more) elimination diet for 30 days, I was going to look for a clean-eating recipe idea for rhubarb.Then I realized - I could add rhubarb to my low glycemic Arbonne smoothie, as the raw organic stevia extract used as the sweetener in my vegan/soy free protein powder will naturally sweeten the rhubarb as well.
 As I drink my breakfast meal replacement shake, I must say's smoothie experiment is excellent! Fast and simple to make - here are the ingredients for this new twist on a strawberry smoothie, in the order in which I placed them in my Ninja Pro Blender.

Strawberry Rhubarb Smoothie 
1/2 cup water
2 cups of washed, chopped rhubarb
2 scoops Arbonne vanilla protein
1/2 scoop Arbonne Fiber Boost
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ginger
4 frozen strawberreis
1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk

If you have a powerful blender - Vitamix or Blendtec your machine will puree the fresh rhubarb no problem. Know your equipment - try using the rhubarb fresh, but you may have to cook it slightly to soften. Blend all ingredients until smooth and enjoy!

I will note that I added a couple leaves of lemon balm simply because I visited an organic grower friend of mine this morning to get vegetable plants for my garden, and she sent me home some lemon balm. I can't taste it - but there are health benefits to lemon balm as well!

As I type this and finish my smoothie I can BARELY get it all down. I feel SO FULL!! Before my shake I tried Arbonne's new Evolution Full Control product....which contains glucomannan - a plant fiber that expands in your stomach to make you feel full. I used as directed, about 20 min. before my shake. I don't feel like I can eat another bite all day!!

I have two clients who have already lost several pounds just days into our 30 Day Summer Slimdown challenge... I need to stay on track - so glad I could find a low glycemic use for fresh rhubarb!

May you feel great, look great and live great - let healthy be your new happy!
Rita S.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Why does skin care matter?

Why bother with pure, safe and beneficial skin care?
"Simply put, healthy skin is vital for our survival both emotionally and physically. To boost these capabilities, we need to understand its role and importance in our overall health and learn how to better care for our skin. What we put on our skin is just as important as what we put in our body; both affect the well being of our entire body (skin included!). The next time you slather on that chemical laden lotion or soak in a toxic tub, remember that your skin absorbs a large percentage of what you put on it."  I put these sentences in quotations as I found it on several sites, and am therefore not sure whom originally penned the words. Nonetheless, it is an absolute truth that I believe in and felt worth repeating.

The skin, as the largest organ, covers about 20 square feet of the human body. It is our...

Protective Barrier - it is our defender from a host of daily threats of bacteria and more. It helps preserve our internal fluids and organs. With everything from chemicals in the skin care products we slather on, environmental toxins and pollutants, harmful bacteria, viruses, parasites, pathogens, antigens and UV radiation attacking it, skin needs to be in tip top shape to ward off illness and keep us healthy.

Waste Remover.  Skin is a passageway that rids our body of toxins and helps prevent chemical and waste build-up. Clean pores enable your body to eliminate waste; and keeping your pores clean provides a clear exit strategy for all kinds of yucky toxins that accumulate in our bodies. Pores that are congested and blocked with chemicals and pollutants prevent skin from functioning properly and removing toxins.

Protection from injury - Our skin is the first communicator to the brain when we are injured. Whether from a sharp object that bodes us to retreat,  heat from a fire that warns us away...healthy skin increases the sensitivity to outside threats and allows us to react more quickly.
The skin, as our largest organ, does so much more. It is a diagnostic tool, with breakouts and lesions an indicator that something is amiss on the inside. Natural oils of the skin provide an anti-bacterial defense, which is why hygiene products that strip the skin of its natural oils break down our defenses. Its an emotion indicator...flare ups of rosecea, acne, and other ailments reflect the body is under stress, etc.
Healthy skin is important for overall wellness. So the next time you reach for your shampoo, or bottle of lotion, you may want to ask yourself, is this pure and safe to use,or am I promoting a build up of toxins in my body and causing harm to the largest organ of my body...the skin?"
May you feel great, look great and live great - by taking care of your skin!
Rita S.