Quick Wins, Food Hacks and Fibroids – Holistic Habits by Cheryl A. Mothes, Ph.D. Natural Health Nutrition Counselor (6)

Most of us want to get healthier, feel great, function better and live longer. Let us face it though, it is hard to know how to change life-long habits and trade them in for healthier choices. There are some “quick wins” you can achieve, trying each one for a week, then adding another. Today is about breakfast. What is your “go to” and how can it be healthier? Try replacing it with oatmeal with walnuts, pecans or almonds mixed in, a tablespoon of ground flax seeds or chia seeds then raisins or dried fruit and lastly cinnamon, cloves, or any other spice you would like. Use plant-based milks instead of cow’s milk to make it, and for your mornings to be super-fast and easy, mix it all up the night before then eat it cold – overnight oats are fabulous! It is meatless Monday, and their website is loaded with great breakfast ideas for you and your kiddo’s! Have a marvelous Monday everyone!

Yesterday we started a list for “quick wins” to get healthier when it comes to food choices. For your morning snack, have a huge bowl of fruit and always include berries. Do not be concerned about the sugar in fruit – nature made it for us perfectly. Nutritionally it is most beneficial if you eat it by itself, so as a snack is ideal. For afternoon snacks, pack a snack bag size of pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, raisins, nuts, dates, and dried fruits to charge you up for the afternoon. Hummus or nut butters with carrots, peppers or celery are also great, and cold edamame is superb. Add a dark chocolate at the end to top it off! For lunch and dinner, learn to LOVE SALADS and to make a variety of soups. Use different vegetables, beans and grains in your salads and soups because our bodies thrive most on diversification. Plantify your plates to live longer and live stronger and have a wonderful Tuesday.

We talk sometimes about food “hacks” – things to do and not do, to make the most of their nutrition qualities. And we have talked MANY times about the nutritional benefits of berries – blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, cranberries – so powerful are their antioxidant and vitamin levels that Dr. Gregor lists them in his Daily Dozen, meaning eat them every day. He also recommends drinking tea every day, preferably green tea. In a recent large study, it showed the very favorable results of eating blueberries each day when it comes to reducing high blood pressure. It is impressive when there is clinical improvement for a killer disease by just adding one food to our diets. But there is more – another study showed that if you mix berries with milk, yogurt, or cottage cheese – anything dairy – it SIGNIFICANTLY reduces the antioxidant activity of those berries! Smoothies with whey powder, milk or yogurt are cancelling out many of the benefits of the added berries. And guess what? It does the same thing to tea if you are a person that adds milk or creamer. Nix the dairy for lots of reasons, and particularly when you are eating berries or drinking tea. Have a wonderful Wednesday everyone!

Many women struggle with growths inside their uterus that called fibroids. A new study shows that diets deficient in fresh fruits, green vegetables and vitamin D increase the risk of fibroids. Opting for fiber-rich whole grains that aid in removing excess estrogen, as well as avoiding gluten, dairy and white, starchy foods can reduce fibroid risk. Lastly, cruciferous veggies like broccoli, kale and Bok choy can boost detoxifying enzymes in the liver, as are sweet potatoes, carrots, apricots, pumpkin, and spinach all of which can reduce fibroids. Enjoy a wealth of health with all these great, whole foods.

Legumes – all kinds of beans, chickpeas, split peas, and lentils are excellent sources of essential nutrients, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and much more – they are the cheapest source of good nutrition as well. Those who eat more beans tend to have less heart disease – to the point that just a single daily serving of beans was associated with a 38 percent reduction in the risk of heart attack! When you measure cholesterol values and add beans to the diet, then remove them, cholesterol levels go down then back up. Eating beans can also elicit major improvements in arterial functioning, reversing artery disease. Wow! We grossly underestimate the power of legumes! Load up on them to improve your health on the shelf and have a fantastic Friday everyone!

AND, From the Past:

God wants us to live longer and stronger and feel better than most of us do. This is National Alzheimer’s Month, and we could talk ALL MONTH on it! Did you know that deaths due to Alzheimer’s has increased by 87% in just the last ten years? It also is by far the most expensive disease to manage, and here is the super part – recent studies demonstrate that 90% of Alzheimer’s cases can be PREVENTED! Again, it is all about lifestyle. The five main lifestyle solutions are represented by the acronym NEURO: Nutrition, Exercise, Unwind, Restore and Optimize. Stay tuned for more details and have a terrific Tuesday everyone!

We are focusing on Alzheimer’s Month this week, and most believe that genes determine everything, but the truth is that our brains are vulnerable to what we eat, how much we exercise, our ability to manage chronic stress, the quality of our sleep and the ways in which we challenge our brains. Our genes change over time when exposed to harmful triggers like poor nutrition, sedentary lifestyles, chemicals, and chronic stress. SO, we can combat all these diseases simply – yes, it is simple – by reducing those factors that put us most at risk: sugary and processed foods, pollutants and heavy metals, lack of exercise and stress. Have a wonderful Wednesday everyone!

We are talking this week about Alzheimer’s, and most importantly the fact that 90% of it can be prevented. Two-thirds of those with this tragic disease are women. In a large study it was found that women with the highest saturated fat intake had a 70 percent higher risk of negative changes in brain function. There are profound insights into the relationship between nutrition, longevity and avoiding chronic disease, and we know that those who eat meat, including poultry and fish, have twice the risk of developing dementia as those who are plant based. So, Thursday’s “Power of the Plate” tip is to eat more fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, beans, and whole grains to stave off Alzheimer’s!

It is Friday’s holistic habit of the day, and we are finishing the week on Alzheimer’s disease. Recently, a groundbreaking book was published called, The Alzheimer’s Solution, which demonstrates that Nutrition, Exercise, Unwinding, Restoring, and Optimizing our brains are the keys to preventing Alzheimer’s. And here is another huge benefit – those same lifestyle changes save us from OTHER chronic diseases! The book has important keys: a whole-food plant-based diet that is low in sugar and salt is something we have talked about many times. But the importance of an active lifestyle that incorporates moving EVERY HOUR is recommended. And stress management that is supported by strong communities, meditation, spending time in nature and mindful breathing is part of the plan as well. Lastly, 7 to 8 hours of regular, detoxifying sleep and cognitive activities like games and meaningful social interaction are especially important. Have a fantastic Friday everyone!

Recent Posts