Anxiety, it’s perfectly normal…yes??

Anxiety is a perfectly normal response to stressors, like being caught in up a dangerous situation, taking a test, or having to make an important decision, but when anxiety becomes a constant response or a response to inappropriate situations, it becomes problematic. 

Anxiety affects many people throughout their lives. For some, it is merely situational, but for others, anxiety is constant and can lead to disorders. These include generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and social anxiety disorder.

Especially this time of year, it seemd like problems arise everyday.  I haven’t even started to decorate yet, yep, no tree yet.  There’s some major health issues going on in my family right now.  It makes me feel anxious because there is nothing I can do about it.  BUT, it’s temporary and I am focusing on some major self care to combat it.

Some causes of anxiety include:
-stress
-trauma
-thyroid disorders
-dysfunctional serotonin
-excessive alcohol consumption
-caffeine and sugar intake
-hormonal imbalance

Physical and psychological symptoms of anxiety include:
-muscle tension
-chest tightness
-heart palpitations
-high blood pressure
-insomnia
-digestive problems
-panic attacks
-irritability
-difficulty concentrating
-restlessness
-sweating
-anxiousness
-inability to socialize

Psychotropic drugs and cognitive behavioral therapy are the conventional methods for anxiety treatment, and with an estimated one-third of the population suffering from anxiety, it is no doubt that the number of medications is equally high.

However, there are many natural remedies for anxiety out there that have been proven effective without the adverse side effects. These include several changes to diet and lifestyle.

Here are some natural, proactive lifestyle changes that can help to reduce the symptoms of anxiety:

Avoid Sugary and Processed Foods
Consuming foods with a high glycemic index, like processed and fast foods, can contribute to anxiety and depression. Additionally, sugar and refined carbohydrates can cause blood sugar levels to fluctuate wildly, increasing anxiety, nervousness and fatigue. 

Alcohol and Caffeine
Alcohol and caffeine can both enhance anxiety symptoms by causing tension, moodiness, and the jitters. Reduce anxiety by avoiding alcohol completely, or by limiting your intake to 1–3 drinks per week, with no more than two at a time. Limit coffee or black tea to no more than one cup per day.

Ashwagandha
Ashwagandha, a powerful herb, is often used as a natural remedy for anxiety, as it helps to stabilize the body’s response to stress. Ashwagandha improves focus, reduces fatigue, and helps to fight anxiety without the attending side effects of anti-anxiety medications. 

Kava Root
Kava root is used to treat anxiety by stimulating dopamine receptors in the brain, which induces euphoria and a sense of wellbeing. It is a great alternative to anti-anxiety medications because it is non-addictive and non-hypnotic, but still increases positive mood and relaxation. Kava should be taken under the guidance of a health care provider, as it has been known to interact with certain medications. 

Magnesium 
Because magnesium is a common deficiency in adults, you should consider supplementing as it is great for relaxing muscles and the nervous system.

Lavender Oil
Lavender is a natural sedative, and it helps reduce anxiety by allowing the body to relax. 

Physical Activity
Physical activity helps to reduce stress, improve sleep, reduce inflammation, increase energy, and boost confidence. It takes around half an hour of sustained exercise to see the effects on anxiety levels.

We are motivated to educate as many people as possible which is why a new monthly membership is coming. Monthly educational experiences to virtual webinars and even great recipes and eating ideas. I encourage everyone to get registered with all of our offerings. Learn more in our free Healthy Journey group.  Join us here: Imagine Fit~Healthy Journey

And just in time for the rush of the season, grab your Quick Holiday Smoothie Guide, enjoy good nutrition in the rush of the season!

Tis the season….3 Tips to avoid overeating!

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

Sometimes those holiday feasts are just amazing. And it’s not just the abundance of delicious food but also the people, the decorations, and the ambiance. Remembering why you are thankful!

AND it is way too easy (and common) to indulge on those days.

But it doesn’t always stop there. Does it?Sometimes we overeat on regular days. Or at regular meals. Or All. The. Time.

Here are three tips to avoid overeating at meals. (Psst, turn these into habits and ditch the willpower!)

Tip #1: Start with some water

When your stomach is growling and you smell amazingly delicious food it’s too easy to fill a plate (or grab some samples with your bare hands) and dive into the food.

But did you know that it’s possible to sometimes confuse the feeling of thirst with that of hunger? Your stomach may actually be craving a big glass of water rather than a feast.

Some studies have shown that drinking a glass or two of water before a meal can help reduce the amount of food eaten. And this super-simple tip may even help with weight loss (…just sayin’).

Not only will the water start to fill up your stomach before you get to the buffet, leaving less room for the feast but drinking enough water has been shown to slightly increase your metabolism.

Win-win!

Tip #2: Try eating “mindfully”

You’ve heard of mindfulness but have you applied that to your eating habits?

This can totally help you avoid overeating as well as having the added bonus of helping your digestion.

Just as being mindful when you meditate helps to focus your attention on your breathing and the present moment being mindful when you eat helps to focus your attention on your meal.

Do this by taking smaller bites, eating more slowly, chewing more thoroughly, and savouring every mouthful. Notice and appreciate the smell, taste and texture.
Breathe.

This can help prevent overeating because eating slower often means eating less.

When you eat quickly you can easily overeat because it takes about 20 minutes for your brain to know that your stomach is full. And you get too much “air” in the belly!

So take your time, pay attention to your food and enjoy every bite.

Bonus points: Eat at a table (not in front of the screen), off of a small plate, and put your fork down between bites.

Tip #3: Start with the salad

You may be yearning for that rich, creamy main dish. But don’t start there.

(Don’t worry, you can have some…just after you’ve eaten your salad).

Veggies are a great way to start any meal because they’re full of not only vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and health-promoting hytochemicals but they also have some secret satiety weapons: fiber and water.

Fiber and water are known to help fill you up and make you feel fuller. They’re “satiating”. And these secret weapons are great to have on your side when you’re about to indulge in a large meal.

There may be some that can’t eat salad greens…so find a high fiber veggie single and enjoy. Find some and learn more about the benefits of fiber here.

In Summary

• Have a glass of water
• eat mindfully
• start with your salad to help avoid overeating at meals.

Recipe (Water): Tasty (and beautiful) Pre-Meal Water Ideas

If you’re not much of a plain water drinker or need your water
to be more appealing to your senses here are five delicious (and beautiful
looking) fruit combos to add to your large glass of water:

Slices of lemon & ginger
Slices of strawberries & orange
Slices of apple & a cinnamon stick
Chopped pineapple & mango (my fav)
Blueberries & raspberries

Tip: You can buy a bag (or several bags) of frozen chopped fruit and throw those into your cup, thermos, or cool mason jar in the morning.  They’re already washed and cut and will help keep your water colder longer.

References:

https://authoritynutrition.com/7-health-benefits-of-water/
https://summertomato.com/the-science-behind-mindful-eating-what-happens-to-your-body-during-a-mindful-meal

When you change nothing, nothing will change

When you change nothing, nothing will change

Recently I found a little calendar that had some amazing monthly pages!  I have to share one with you.(with a few add ins)
 Written by Suzy Toronto, the calendar is called “Always Color Outside the Lines”
Make Each Day Ridiculously Amazing!
I believe with all my heart that if I want to have an incredible day, it’s my responsibility to make it happen.  I need to convince myself that no matter what stands in my way,I am going to make it ridiculously amazing.
Believe me …I know that can be  tall order.
Some days just getting out of bed seems to trigger a chain of events that is pretty much as far from amazing as you can get.  (You know, it’s those mornings that start out like a washing machine on a spin cycle. And you can’t decide if the world is trying to kill you or make you stronger!)
 

 

But it really is up to me(and you) to how the rest of the day rolls out from there.  (Agreed?)
I force myself to put on a wacky smile (does make you feel better), even when it i not easy to do.  Because I believe attitude is the difference between an ordeal and an adventure – it encourage me to play in the puddles rather than complain about the rain.
AND you know the best part?  An outlook like that is contagious! It spills over onto everyone and everything and floods your world with positive energy, making “amazing day” the new standard.
The bottom line is this:  When you change nothing, nothing will change! (how true is that!) But with a new attitude, you can really make a difference.  So don’t just “Have a nice day”  make is ridiculously AMAZING!
I totally want your days to be amazing!How do you make your days amazing? Leave a comment and share!

6Weeks Sofa to Sensational!

You need to
exercise.  I need to exercise.  I moved ahead to write this chapter
because I have a struggle with myself when I am working on too many exciting things
and that is to leave my time in for exercise and fitness.  Luckily I have
a great workout partner for 3 days a week, but seriously if she cancels…it’s
hard to go alone! BUT, the problem is, once you quit moving so do our
endorphins and it gets a little depressing. No depression wanted here, what
about you?

#1 Make time…no matter how busy…make the
time!

We think we don’t
have time but actually we do.  I have found in my experience, the more
time I make to move my body the more time I have in the day.  Funny how
that works! I think it is because I have more energy and I am sure that
endorphins have something to do with it as well.  The truth is, the more you move, the more active you become! And I know
we are all busy, but there are so many ways to squeeze in a little time. 

#2 Find something you love to do!

You need to do
something you love.  It doesn’t really matter what it is as long as you do
it.  I love to dance and I love to strength train with bodyweight
exercises.  I know it sounds funny, but I get a thrill being able to enjoy
my “me” time and having others with me and I love how it makes me look. Not
just in my body, but in my SMILE! 
Do you love a BOOTCAMP?  What comes to mind when you here that
word?  TOO MUCH WORK, I WILL SWEAT TOO MUCH, I DON”T THINK I CAN DO IT?  All those things have been in my thoughts
before! But what is a BOOTCAMP
Seriously…it is defined as “Bootcamp is a group exercise program packed
with fun and energizing activities designed to help you reach a fitness
goal.  Often run outdoors in the fresh
air.” Or “a training style camp for military recruits”?  Which brings up a good picture in your
mind?  I see a Bootcamp as a combination of exercise, learning, fellowship, accountability.

#3 Pair it with something you love!

You can even do things
you don’t love to do.  However, these are the hardest.  That is why
you need to pair it up with something you do love to do.  I know some of you who are
reading this know what I mean.  The thing that I am trying to say, is that
if you choose something you don’t like to do and have a higher purpose you
reach new heights of satisfaction you would never have known otherwise.
Experiment and find what is right for you.  Some people like to play.  If that is you then join a basketball
team or perhaps a volleyball team.  Sometimes if you pair it with being
social then it doesn’t feel like exercise.  Dance is exercise too! Pair it
with romance!

#4 Clarify what you want to achieve.

Do you want to
lose weight, de-stress, build strength, improve your golf game, rebuild your
knees?  If you need to get to the grocery store, you have 3 choices, walk,
ride your bike or drive.  If you want to rebuild your knees, you are not
going to pick lunges well that just doesn’t make sense.  If you can’t
figure it out, don’t be afraid to hire a professional trainer.  They have
been taught to know the things that you do not.  They know what you can do
that will best achieve your goals.  You can hire them for one visit to
make a plan or you can hire them for a few to show you how or long term to
build on your success.

#5 Make
an appointment with yourself for exercise.

Schedule it into
your day.  The reason I say this is because, if you show up you will do it. SCHEDULE this into your calendar – APRIL
4th, 9AM SNAP Fitness, Radcliff
Barre
Latte Bootcamp
– coaching, movement and fun!

#6 Do your homework and know why you are
moving it and shaking it!

It helps to know
that if you don’t work out on a regular basis that you are going to be
sick.  Exercise prevents heart disease, diabetes, cancer, depression,
osteoporosis and arthritis (just to name a few).  Exercise makes you
smarter (proven), leaner and healthier.  If that isn’t enough exercise gives you energy!

#8 Look for a mentor!

There are tons of
people out there who have done it.  Those are the people you want to
find.  They are also very willing to show you how to do it.  The secret is to find someone who is doing what you want to do and learn from themYou don’t have to do the same thing over and over because you can
learn new things and add it in to your old routines.  You can diversify.

#10 Exercise just like food, changes everything.

CLEANSING? DETOXING?
Are you a
little tempted to try it? 
Do you wonder
about it?
Cleansing has
become very popular lately.  Popular and controversial.  There has
not been a lot of research or study on colon cleansing so there is no empirical
data or ironclad answer.  Some doctors say steer clear because it is
unnecessary and dangerous and others prescribe it as a way to unclog your pipes
and flush away the toxins.
WHY?
If you eat a
lot and only eliminate once a day or worse (LESS!!!!) then you are not
getting rid of all that is going in!  If we are clogged up (even with a
healthy diet) then we get sick.  Our colon gets crusted over from eating
meat, dairy, breads, processed foods, cakes, candy and bad fat.  It is
just gross, think of all the fried foods and weight you are still carrying
around with you and what is building on it.
The intestine
draws in needed nutrients for the body and if your intestines are not able to
get the nutrients, your food is wasted.  If food doesn’t move easily
through the intestines, then it starts to build up and we become constipated,
cramped, gain weight, become depressed and our immune system quits working and
we ultimately become sick.
Are you
depressed?  Has your doctor ever prescribed colonic treatment as a
cure?  I doubt it!  Our belly has serotonin receptors, the build up
and sickness in our belly can cause depression.
If you are not
convinced by now that you need to clear some of the goo away, there is
more.  Our stomach produces mucus to guard against acids, this is
healthy.  It is when we continually eat McDonalds and Burger King that we
overproduce the stuff and it all gets clogged up…ick.
Along with
eliminating daily waste, our body has the job to defend itself against
toxins.  The normal detoxification process is pretty amazing:
  • Toxins enter the blood.
  • Antioxidants grab them and neutralize them
    and move them to the liver.
  • The liver takes the toxins and gives the
    antioxidants back to circulate.
  • The liver neutralizes and either eliminates
    the toxins either through feces, sweat or urine or it turns the toxin into
    a more toxic compound.
It is the
hormones, artificial flavoring and coloring that are added to processed foods
that causes the liver to turn the toxins into bigger and badder toxins. 
Eating a diet fresh and whole, along with avoiding the type of toxins we
breathe in will help to eliminate #3 from happening.  By taking in all
these toxins, we create a problem that our body was not designed to deal with.
So, by now you
should be convinced that our bodies need help.
HOW
There are
different ways to detox and cleanse your body.  Some are very natural, non
controversial and extremely healthy.  Some may seem extreme and others are
simple.  How you choose to cleanse is important.
Different
cleansing aids:
  • Eat clean
  • Wheatgrass
  • Green Juices & Green Vegetables
  • Apples
  • Garlic
  •  Lemons, Limes and Oranges
  •  Omega 3 Oils
  •  Green Tea
  • Mung Beans
  • Take enzymes
  • Food combining
  • Probiotics
  • Enemas
  • Colon irrigation (professional)
  • Magnesium
  • Kits with powders and potions
IMAGINE FIT is currently working with a group of amazing ladies on a 
12 DAY NATURAL DETOX…this will be available again soon!
On
Enemas and Colon Cleansing
This is the
controversial part.  ANd I must admit I have not tried this, but I want to share all I can. The Mayo Clinic says “don’t do it”.  However,
colon cleansing is prescribed more and more by doctors looking for a more
holistic approach to wellness.
If you are
planning to do an enema or colon cleanse, go to a good and well-trained colon
hydro therapist.
Colon
cleansing could possibly have an effect on the nervous system.  The
reflexes in the bowel affect the nervous system. There is no debate that a lot
of symptoms that are caused by being constipated can be relieved with colon
therapy.
Colon
cleansing can be achieved with processed powders and liquid potions. You take
some supplements used for colon cleansing by mouth or through the rectum. 
These products help the colon to expel its contents.  There is no evidence
that they have any long term benefit of building immunity or repairing the
body’s systems.
Colon
cleansing with colon irrigation. The irrigation works like an enema. There
is no odor or discomfort if you have a good hydro therapist. You lay down on a
table and a low-pressure pump or a gravity-based reservoir flushes several
gallons of water through a small tube inserted into your rectum.  The
therapist sits with you the entire time.  After a while, the therapist
might massage your belly to loosen things up a little.  This process
comfortably flushes the fluid and waste through.  It usually takes about
an hour.  Most colon hydro therapists suggest regular visits.  Maybe
once a month for a while and then progressing to once every other month. You
should always drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration after as well as
taking probiotics to restore good bacteria and wheatgrass (and because I think
you should have wheatgrass with everything!)
Many doctors
say your digestive system and bowel naturally eliminate waste material and
bacteria — your body doesn’t need colon cleansing to do this.
Those who like
colon cleansing, think that toxins cause many health problems, like arthritis,
allergies and asthma. They believe a colonic or a colonic irrigation —removes
toxins and strengthens your immune system.
You are the
only one who can decide whether this type of cleansing is right for you.

**You should
not use colonics if you have Crohn’s disease, IBS, acute diverticulitis,
pregnancy, or diarrhea or if part of your colon has been removed. 
Cheryl Love, Integrative Nutrition Health Coach
imaginefit4life@gmail.com
©2015 The Health Coach Group

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