Want Quick Happy tips? Head over to Marc and Angels Hack

Practical Tips for Productive Living - Wonderful Quick and effective reading articles around the wellbeing, happiness and positiveness in bullet points numbers. I personally use it for easy reference

Want quick inspiration? Inspiration Peak is the place to go!

Check out and subscribe to Inspiration Peak in my Fav Websites for everyday quotes. Works a charm every single day. You're more than welcome to suggest a quote too!

Mind, Body, Green - Ultimate Wellness articles

I love their articles for it is written by various authors coming from wellbeing, yoga, holistic nutrition background that brings you closer to nature and serenity...

Lifehacker - Tips, tricks, and downloads for getting things done

Slightly drawn towards IT tips but they do also have tips about anything and everything you need under the sun, including tips for baking and cleaning! Check them out

Friday, November 30, 2012

Ostereoporosis - more than just calcium

This is something I didn't know myself! I guess it's because our bones have collagen and it needs strength!


What You Should Know About Osteoporosis
by: Junji Takano
When you say "osteoporosis", we immediately think it is caused by lack of calcium. Doctors will recommend you to take more calcium, vitamin D, and sun exposure or sunbath.
However, the latest findings in various hospitals show that the majority of osteoporosis patients are not caused by lack of calcium.
Their bones are complete and absorbing calcium. So what is wrong with them? CT scan results show no signs of osteoporosis, yet, the patients easily suffer from bone fractures. What's going on?
  
Here, we came to know about a new strain of osteoporosis that was discovered since about two years ago.
The most common type of bone fracture nowadays is "spinal fracture". If spinal fracture occurs, the risk of death is eight times higher than any other type of bone fractures.
What is the reason that bones are weakening? Why do patients suffer from broken spine?
It is an important factor to have bone strength, not just bone density.. Bone collagen connective tissues are also an important factor to create flexibility.
Many of us didn't realize this at first sight. In the past, osteoporosis was viewed more on bone strength, and we never hear and realize about these connective tissues.
To improve bone density, it's a common knowledge to do regular exercise and have a higher calcium intake like by eating calcium-rich dried fishes.
But now, we have to think of a new measure to maintain bone collagen connective tissues to have enough flexibility. From this simple measure, you may escape from the risk of death caused by fracture of spinal bones.
To measure or determine strong bone and bone mineral density are not as easy as what you may think.
Clinically, it has to pass various tests.
Well, what is the major cause that leads to reduction of bone collagen connective tissues? Do you believe that it is because of high blood sugar?
The major component of bone, which is about one half of its structure, is calcium, and collagen is the other half. Collagen fibres run through hundreds of bone materials (calcium), and the bones that we know are made.
You can imagine that the bone materials (calcium) are somewhat bonded by collagen and kept with reasonable flexibility. However, when blood sugar increases, the collagen will be joined as if there is an adhesive cement around, and the bone will become brittle.
To avoid the increase of blood sugar, exercise is one of the best things to do. Aside from it, we recommend you to take a balanced diet that contains vitamin B12 and vitamin B6, and foods such as mackerel, sardines, clams, folic acidbroccoli, spinach,garland chrysanthemum, soybeans, and asparagus.
By taking these foods, you can have strong flexible bones.
## 3 COMMON MYTHS ON OSTEOPOROSIS
1. Myth: Young people should not worry about osteoporosis.
Wrong. You will not realize that you have osteoporosis until you have this condition in advanced stages. That is why it is very important to begin proper nutrition and regular exercise as early as childhood to promote healthy bones.
2. Myth: Only women get osteoporosis.
Wrong. Although less common, men can get osteoporosis, too. 20% of those affected by osteoporosis are men.
3. Myth: Drinking plenty of milk will help you prevent osteoporosis.
Not entirely true. Even though drinking milk is a good way to get calcium, it is not the only factor in preventing osteoporosis. There are others as mentioned in this article.

Give a little love

And you will get Love back...Pay it forward. This is such an inspiring clip that it brings tears to my eyes.
 

Thursday, November 29, 2012

10 Ways to Change Your Life at Any Age

The current advise that applies to me at this moment of time is no.9, to keep learning and embrace life's change. As we grow older we get more comfortable. I've come to this semi comfortable stage where I am terrified to go against change, yet my courage keeps persuading and encouraging me to go through it. Sometimes it really burdens, sometimes it does pushes me down but embracing new change allows me to explore new things. And I know sooner or later I will come to that comfortable stage but even more to just comfort. 

So embrace what you want to do, embrace the passion, because not only you will find comfort but you will find even more what life has to give, fulfilment, happiness, love, energy. I have euphoric moments when I sit back and think as well as be proud that I embraced my fears. The regret feeling slowly dies.

The best part is that you can do it anytime at any age =). What are you waiting for? I'll be here to encourage!



From Marc and Angel Hack Life


Things can change if you want them to, at any age.  As I awoke this morning, I marveled at my life today.  Where once I woke with dread at the thought of a new day, now I wake with excitement to begin – grateful to be doing what I’m doing for a living.  I am so happy I did what I had to do, and struggled through the tough times and the fears, and realigned my life with the things that make me happy.  When friends ask me how I did it, as they sometimes do, I tell them, “Hard work and persistence.  It’s a small price to pay for a changed life.”
Here are ten things you can do to change your life at any age:
  1. Subtract the wrong things. – When things aren’t adding up in your life, it’s time to start subtracting.  Sometimes you must let go to grow.  You cannot discover new oceans unless you build up enough courage to lose sight of the old, familiar shoreline.  Be brave.  Follow your values.  Make changes.  And remember, no venture is ever a waste of time.  The ones that don’t work out teach you lessons that prepare you for the ones that do.  Read A New Earth.
  2. Believe you CAN. – The biggest obstacle that stops people from achieving their dreams is the feeling that they are not good enough.  Don’t be afraid of the space between your dreams and reality.  You are good enough!  Don’t let life discourage you.  Success is often closer than it seems.  With enough determination and drive, anything is possible in time.  Everyone who got to where they are had to begin from where they were, just like you.
  3. Work hard for what you want most. – Dreams don’t just magicallybecome realities; it takes a lot of determination, sweat, and hard work.  Remember, tough circumstances don’t last; tough people do.  Most obstacles melt away when we make up our minds to march boldly through them.  If you have a strong commitment to your goals and dreams, and wake up every morning with passion to work toward them, anything is possible.
  4. Stand up for yourself. – You can’t force people to show you respect, but you can refuse to be disrespected.  If you always back down to keep the peace, you will forever be armed with anger and self-loathing, and fighting a war within.  Say what you need to say, do what you need to do, and don’t let anyone bully you into a corner.
  5. Let go of the past. – Don’t stumble on something behind you.  Don’t let your shadow guide you. You are not a slave to your past. Let it go and move on.  Dream and give yourself permission to envision a ‘YOU’ that you choose to be – that you know you CAN be.  Read The Language of Letting Go.
  6. End hurtful relationships. – Just because you have a past with someone, doesn’t mean you should have a future with them.  Just because you miss someone, doesn’t mean you need them back in your life.  Sometimes missing them is just a healthy part of moving on.
  7. Be thankful for what you have. – It’s not happy people who are thankful, it’s thankful people who are happy.  Even when times are tough, think of all the beauty still around you, and smile.  Life is too short to have a victim mentality.  Say to yourself, “I am not going to be bitter, I am going to be better.”
  8. Dedicate some time every day to loving yourself. – Only when we can sit alone quietly and look with honest eyes at our strengths and our weaknesses, our failures and our triumphs, our humanness and our moral strength, and love ourselves in spite of, and because of all that we are, will we begin to truly understand the meaning and power of unconditional love.  Read The Mastery of Love.
  9. Keep learning and embracing life’s changes. – The seeds of your success are planted in your past failures.  Your best stories will come fromovercoming your greatest struggles.  Your praises will be birthed from your pains.  Keep standing and keep pushing forward.  Even the coldest winters eventually turn into springtime.  Seasons always change.
  10. Enjoy where you are now. – Sometimes we’re so busy watching out for what’s just ahead of us that we don’t take time to enjoy where we are.  Laugh at the confusion, live consciously in the moment, and enjoy your life as it unfolds.  You might not be exactly where you had intended to go, but you are precisely where you need to be.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Cute 'Wet' Kitties

Bit of Humor! I find it hilarious haha

 

5 Vices Every Woman Should Have

TO all my ladies out there, I dedicate this post to you!! =D

Let's celebrate Womanhood!!! Original post here


I’ve lived a lot of my life as a “should-er”:

“I should drink warm water with lemon when I wake up in the morning.”

“I should go to bed at 10pm and wake up at 6am.”

“I should meditate and practice yoga every morning.”

“I should eat an all-organic, vegan diet.”

“I shouldn’t drink coffee, eat sugar, or drink alcohol.” 

Yes, I have (and to a certain extent still do) live this way. Heck, I even wrote a book advocating these “should’s.”

But I’m noticing something as I work with more and more women. These “shoulds,” which have a place in our lives, can become rigid and—worse—they can disconnect us from our intuitive instinctual natures. When we become too disciplined with our spiritual and wellness regimes, we end up stuffing the very source of our true power: our feminine intuition.

When we try to be healthier and happier, too often these can become moral absolutes — we really want to be “good,” “perfect,” and or “in control”. 

By following external expectations and instructions all the time, we can lose touch with our own inner teachers. These soul guides are always trying to tell us what we most need and want in order to feel more alive, feminine, and content.

If you find that you’re sometimes being strangled by your practices, your diet, and your ideas about what you SHOULD be doing, here’s what I recommend. Following these five vices can help us re-discover the middle womanly way—of living neither too tight, nor too loose, but more humanly at home within ourselves and our lives. (And the great things about vices are they never have a “should” around them!)

1. Be slothful.
If you’re tired and cranky, embrace your inner sloth. Go to bed earlier. Sleep later. Take a nap. Take a day off. Call in sick. Block out a “bed day” to stay under the covers for as long as you want. Practice yin or restorative yoga. Take a slow walk outside. Or do nothing at all. Be laaaazy.

As women, our intuition speaks to us most clearly when we’re rested, quiet, listening, and receptive. When we’re in a “being” state, more than a “doing state.” The new moon and/or your first few days of menstruation are the best times for this. Also, after having a baby, a divorce, a big move, or other life transition, you need to rest, replenish, and rejuvenate. You need to rest. Go to the dark, still places within yourself. This is where you’ll find the authentic (non-pushing, non-striving) energy that will effortlessly fuel your next steps.

2. Eat meat.

Two years ago, a Taoist nutritionist strongly advised me to start eating meat. After having been avegetarian (or a vegan) for 15 years, this was a huge shock and challenge for me—at first. But I was ready to rectify my long-time digestive problems and chronic coldness during the fall and winter months, so I tried it out. My energy increased and my digestion improved dramatically.

Now, for most meals, I eat (organic, sustainable, local, cage-free) meat and vegetables—and hardly any grains or legumes (my food staples before). If you’re always feeling cold, gassy, and spaced-out, consider cutting down on raw foods and adding some more meat to your diet for warmth and grounding. It’s a very personal decision to make, so weigh your health concerns and needs with your lifestyle preferences.

3. Stay up late and party.

Fun, play, silliness, and laughter must be part of your spiritual practice, too. Just as you make space for rest and silence, take the time to go out into the world and blast through your comfort zone. Dress up in fishnets and stilettos and go dancing with your girlfriends (or your boyfriend, husband, girlfriend, or partner). Wear red lipstick and take yourself out on a date to a trendy restaurant. Go to a concert, sip a martini at a swanky bar, stay up past your bedtime every now and again.

4. Have more sex.

Need I say more about this one? Have more sex with your partner, and/or with yourself. Get those pleasure hormones flowing, even when, at first, you don’t feel like it. Ease into it, like you're stepping down a staircase. Start with some light touch, some gentle hip sways, some teasing kisses and hair tousling and progress from there.

Your rigidness and taking-yourself-and-life-too-seriously-ness will dissipate once you let go into your sexual energy. The surrender, receptivity, and mind-lessness of sex lands you in your feminine center faster than anything else can!

5. Don’t shower, brush your hair, wear make-up, or clean the house.

This is for those days when you’re not feeling well or are really tired. When you’re on your moon cycle. Post big business launch or presentation. After a long flight. Or for those mornings after you’ve stayed up past your usual bedtime having fun. Forget about the chores. Forgo the primping. Let everything go for a day, or two, or three. 

Here’s to lightening up, ladies. Here’s to the softness, humanity, and feminine wisdom that comes when we allow ourselves to loosen up into “being” by giving as much space to our “vices” as we do to “virtues.”

Monday, November 26, 2012

Don't Try a Detox Without Knowing This

Often we here that word so many million gabazillion times but I have a feeling that most of us think 'strict diet' plans. But do we actually know what detox is? I think this article summarizes it all quite well.


Isn't "detox" a trendy word? It is a common assumption that we can detoxify our bodies by simply consuming some green vegetable juices and eating raw foods. The truth is, detoxification is not a one step process. It’s just not that simple! 

It is important to know that detoxification is an action! Toxins must leave the body in order for a detox to take place.

Detoxification can be summed up in two steps:

1. Awakening toxins

2. Releasing toxins 

Step 1 -  Awakening Toxins: When we consume unnatural foods they leave a sludgy, dense residue in our cells. This residue becomes our excess weight, our body odor, our wrinkles, and our cellulite. This residue in excess is even the culprit behind rapid aging!

We awaken these toxins when we rehydrate this sludgy toxic residue in the cells by consuming alkaline substances:  fresh vegetable juice, raw vegetables and fruits. The negative ionic charge of vegetables, fruit, and their juices are opposite of the positive ionic charge of toxins that were consumed throughout our lives and remain lodged in the cells.

During this step of detoxification the juices, vegetables, and fruits attract the toxins that would otherwise remain in the cells. The alkalinity of raw plant foods and juices lift toxins up and out of our cells and tissues. However, the detox has not occurred yet. The detox occurs during step two.

Step 2 - Releasing the Toxins: After the toxins have been awakened they enter the bloodstream and the body filters them to the elimination organs so that they can be released. At this point in the game, you have great potential to detox, but you haven’t quite detoxed yet!

There are two main elimination organs that we focus on with detoxification: the colon and the skin. If you are following a detoxification regimen and you are not eliminating waste matter through the colon and the skin you are not detoxing!

Below I have listed classic signs that toxins are being awakened, but not released: 
  1. You become constipated.
  2. You break out.
  3. You have headaches.
  4. You develop rashes.
  5. You  just feel really awful, overall.
The best way to ensure that you are detoxing effectively is to make sure that you have access to gravity method colon hydrotherapy from a trained professional, and have access to an infra red sauna so that you can sweat deeply. Always remember that waste must leave the body for detoxification to take place, and waste leaves the body through the colon and the skin.

Saunas are particularly useful for detoxification because in order to experience a deep sweat you would have to do an intense workout that is not always advisable during a detox. Sometimes we have soaring levels of energy when detoxing, but sometimes we will be more tired than usual. Both of these experiences are typical reactions and nothing to be alarmed about.

Colon hydrotherapy is so helpful because it removes old waste matter that would otherwise be too difficult for the body to eliminate on it’s own. If you become constipated while attempting a detox and would like to continue your detox, you must get to a skilled colon therapist, or else you will begin to experience symptoms, and feel awful!

When you awaken and release effectively you will feel an overall lightness physically, emotionally, and spiritually. This is how wonderful we can feel when we release toxins that have been weighing us down for days, weeks, months, years, and even decades!

While the awaken and release approach is very easy to understand intellectually, it is not always so easy to implement effectively. Detoxification can be tricky to understand and monitor, which is why seeking out a nutritionist or coach to guide you can be very helpful, even imperative, to progressing on your journey.

When cleansing, always remember the importance of awaken and release, and you’ll be set up for successful detoxification! 

Friday, November 23, 2012

Creativity is...

Let it shine through =)

4 Words to Avoid

While I grew up I remembered my coach gave me a few sentences to read, repeat and speak to myself and they are sentences of strung up words to create confidence, encouragement and self esteem power to oneself.

Ever since then I constantly seek on quotes of inspiration and now it is predominantly in posters constantly thrown out by fellow friends on facebook.

Words are power, words give us emotions, words describe music. Words to me are very important.

So I feel that it is important to choose our words. They can be a tool to power. To freedom, to anything one heart desires. 

So thought I'd share the words we should / could / if we want to avoid because these words sometimes lead to extremities that may degrade relationships, emotions and spiritual soul in the end. Everything in moderate shall I say? ;)

Gjin~

Courtesy from Mind Body Green


The words we use have a powerful effect on us, way beyond the basic meaning of the words themselves.

We use words to express ourselves. These words create a specific emotion within us. This emotion creates a cascade of reactions in every system of our body: hormonal, nervous, digestive, circulatory, respiratory etc. This physical reaction, created by specific words, is stored as a memory at a cellular level. When repeatedly created, this memory becomes a truth.

The following four words are commonly used and abused on a daily basis, way more than we can imagine. They’re not rude words, or even offensive. Yet they are intricately linked to creating negative truths within us. They are intrinsically tied to judgment, criticism, and defeatism and are fundamentally disempowering through their lack of flexibility and change.

How often do you find yourself using these four words, and do you actually mean them when you use them?

Always: Do you/he/she/they really always do/say this, that, or the other?
Never: Really? Ever, ever? Not even once?
Everyone: Every single body? Surely not, we are a diverse bunch after all.
No one: If you’ve had the thought then most likely ‘someone’ is/does/says…

Talk about making a mountain out of a molehill! You see, these words may seem innocent enough, but notice what happens next time you use one of them in a negative situation. How does it make you feel about the situation? How does it affect your current state of mind? Does it empower you to resolve the situation? Probably not…

The antidote:

Catch yourself using any of these words in a sentence, whether it’s about you or someone else and immediately replace them - out loud - with ‘no, actually, that’s not true, what I really mean is often/lately/he, she, they/sometimes etc.’ This will help you to put things into perspective, to verbalize them as they really are, in this particular situation. This is your reality here and now, it is not a universal truth.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Napping (Infographic)


Top 5 regrets people make on their deathbed

I know this has been passed along around but never fails to remind us of the things we must ensure doing before we actually come closer to death. The thought may be eerie as such but it is a fact in life that all of us will face at the end of the day.

By Bronnie Ware


For many years I worked in palliative care. My patients were those who had gone home to die. Some incredibly special times were shared. I was with them for the last three to twelve weeks of their lives. People grow a lot when they are faced with their own mortality. 
I learnt never to underestimate someone’s capacity for growth. Some changes were phenomenal. Each experienced a variety of emotions, as expected, denial, fear, anger, remorse, more denial and eventually acceptance. Every single patient found their peace before they departed though, every one of them.
When questioned about any regrets they had or anything they would do differently, common themes surfaced again and again. Here are the most common five:
1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.
This was the most common regret of all. When people realize that their life is almost over and look back clearly on it, it is easy to see how many dreams have gone unfulfilled. Most people had not honoured even a half of their dreams and had to die knowing that it was due to choices they had made, or not made.
It is very important to try and honour at least some of your dreams along the way. From the moment that you lose your health, it is too late. Health brings a freedom very few realise, until they no longer have it.
2. I wish I didn’t work so hard.
This came from every male patient that I nursed. They missed their children’s youth and their partner’s companionship. Women also spoke of this regret. But as most were from an older generation, many of the female patients had not been breadwinners. All of the men I nursed deeply regretted spending so much of their lives on the treadmill of a work existence.
By simplifying your lifestyle and making conscious choices along the way, it is possible to not need the income that you think you do. And by creating more space in your life, you become happier and more open to new opportunities, ones more suited to your new lifestyle.
3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.
Many people suppressed their feelings in order to keep peace with others. As a result, they settled for a mediocre existence and never became who they were truly capable of becoming. Many developed illnesses relating to the bitterness and resentment they carried as a result.
We cannot control the reactions of others. However, although people may initially react when you change the way you are by speaking honestly, in the end it raises the relationship to a whole new and healthier level. Either that or it releases the unhealthy relationship from your life. Either way, you win.
4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.
Often they would not truly realise the full benefits of old friends until their dying weeks and it was not always possible to track them down. Many had become so caught up in their own lives that they had let golden friendships slip by over the years. There were many deep regrets about not giving friendships the time and effort that they deserved. Everyone misses their friends when they are dying.
It is common for anyone in a busy lifestyle to let friendships slip. But when you are faced with your approaching death, the physical details of life fall away. People do want to get their financial affairs in order if possible. But it is not money or status that holds the true importance for them. They want to get things in order more for the benefit of those they love. Usually though, they are too ill and weary to ever manage this task. It is all comes down to love and relationships in the end. That is all that remains in the final weeks, love and relationships.
5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.
This is a surprisingly common one. Many did not realise until the end that happiness is a choice. They had stayed stuck in old patterns and habits. The so-called ‘comfort’ of familiarity overflowed into their emotions, as well as their physical lives. Fear of change had them pretending to others, and to their selves, that they were content. When deep within, they longed to laugh properly and have silliness in their life again. When you are on your deathbed, what  others think of you is a long way from your mind. How wonderful to be able to let go and smile again, long before you are dying.
Life is a choice. It is YOUR life. Choose consciously, choose wisely, choose honestly. Choose happiness.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

What if Money were not objection

It's only 3 minutes long. Enjoy it =)


Monday, November 19, 2012

10 Reminders Worth Reviewing Daily

Tip from Marc and Angel Hack Life

 You must find the place inside yourself where nothing is impossible. It starts with a dream. Add confidence, and it becomes a belief. Add commitment, and it becomes a goal in sight. Add action, and it becomes a part of your life. Add determination and time, and your dream comes true.



Here are ten daily reminders to keep your mind centered and your spirits lifted.
  1. Treat yourself the way you want others to treat you.  Stop discrediting yourself for everything you aren’t, and start giving yourself credit for everything that you are.  We have to learn to be our own best friends, because sometimes we fall too easily into the trap of being our own worst enemies.  Insecurity is what’s ugly, not you.  Accept yourself!  Be you, just the way you are, in the beautiful way only you know how.
  2. The biggest obstacles in your life are the barriers your mind creates.  Worrying will never change the outcome.  When you can no longer think of a reason to continue, you must think of a reason to start over.  And do not let where you start, define where you will end up; only your actions and willpower determine that.  Read Awaken the Giant Within.
  3. Sometimes to get where you want to go, you have to do what you are afraid to do.  You must be brave and push forward.  Miracles occur when you give as much attention and energy to your dreams as you do to your fears.
  4. You must find the place inside yourself where nothing is impossible.  It starts with a dream.  Add confidence, and it becomes a belief.  Add commitment, and it becomes a goal in sight.  Add action, and it becomes a part of your life.  Add determination and time, and your dream comes true.  Read The Magic of Thinking Big.
  5. You don’t have to see the whole staircase, you just have to take the first step.  Taking this first step is always the hardest.  But then each subsequent step gets easier and easier.  And with each step you get closer and closer to what you seek.  Until eventually, what had once been invisible, starts to become visible, and what had once felt unattainable, becomes a reality.
  6. No matter how many times you revisit the past, there’s nothing new to see.  Focus on the next step.  Just because you’ve made mistakes doesn’t mean your mistakes get to make you.  Tame your inner critic, forgive yourself and move on. Let your old problems stay where they belong – in the past.  You must make a conscious effort to do this, it won’t happen automatically.  You will have to rise up and say, “I don’t care how hard this is.  I don’t care how disappointed I am.  I’m not going to let this get the best of me.  I’m taking this as a lesson and moving on with my life.”
  7. No matter how difficult things were yesterday, you are armed with the ability and choice to do better today.  A complete turnaround may not happen instantly, but don’t let that deter you from knowing that it will someday.  The struggle you’re in today is developing the strength you need for tomorrow.  Learn from it and don’t give up.
  8. Never get so busy making a living that you forget to make a life.  Believe with all your heart that you will follow your passion and do what you were made to do.  There is no happiness and success to be found by playing it safe and settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.  Read The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.
  9. You can only be yourself, and other people can only be themselves.  Sometimes we try to be sculptors, constantly carving out of others the image of what we want them to be – what we think we need, love or desire.  But these actions and perceptions are against reality, against their benefit and ours, and always end in disappointment – because it does not fit them.  Remember you have the ability to show people how awesome they are, just the way they are.  So act on this ability without hesitation; and don’t forget to show yourself the same courtesy.
  10. Sometimes it’s okay if the only thing you’re doing is breathing.  Life can get so crazy and complicated, but always take the time to slow down, reflect, and appreciate what you have.  There is always someone out there who wishes that had what you have right now.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Cereal: Not the Breakfast of Champions

Nope it isn't...it isn't really...It's only part of it


In a society obsessed with health food – we can be led to buy some pretty ridiculous foodstuffs: fat free yogurt flavored as New York Cheesecake? Ninety-nine percent fat free cereal with more sugar than a candy bar? At the end of the day, I am not fussed whether the bowl of milk and processed grain is gluten free, fat free, sugar free and folate fortified; if it’s cereal, it is far from a “health food” option.

Cereal happens to be one of the mostprocessed foods out there, and many are loaded with carbs, lacking in fiber and devoid of protein. It is true that traditional cereals, without the additional dried fruits and honey-encrusted nuts, can serve you well – but let’s be honest here – how many of you perfectly portion a 1/3 cup of oats every morning? Eating cereal for breakfast has been shown to increase insulin levels and leave you hankering for your skinny latte come 10 am. This is why it is so important to consume clean lean protein and healthy fat for breakfast

Where’s the evidence? A study from The University of Alabama appears to shed some interesting light. The study demonstrated that eating a high fat breakfast actually prevented symptoms of pre-diabetes. Such symptoms include high blood pressure, insulin resistance and abdominal obesity – all prevailing health problems in Australia. In the study, the researchers fed two groups of mice either a high fat or high carbohydrate breakfast. Interestingly, the mice that ate the fatty breakfast had normal metabolic rates throughout the day and were able to burn fat sufficiently. The high carbohydrate mice showed an increase in weight, belly fat and glucose intolerance.

As prevailing knowledge suggests, this study showed how important breakfast is for setting your metabolism for the rest of the day. But perhaps, it also demonstrated the importance of what’s IN the breakfast. In the same study, researchers concluded that the mice that consumed fat were primed to efficiently burn carbohydrates and fat throughout the day. Apparently, the mice that ate the fat rich breakfast were more “flexible” in burning the array of food we consume on a daily basis. And for those mice who ate a carbohydrate heavy breakfast? They were excellent at burning carbohydrates throughout the day, but terrible at burning fat. Not convinced yet? How about a recent study in the Journal of the American Medical Association that showed that cutting back on protein caused you to store fat? The study divided 25 average weight, healthy 18 – 35 year old men and women into three groups
  1. Low-protein diet – 5% of calories came from protein
  2. Moderate-protein diet – 15% of calories came from protein
  3. High-protein diet – 25% of calories came from protein
The three groups were encouraged to eat 1,000 calories more per day over 8 weeks. Understandably, ALL groups put on weight – but the body composition of the three groups was vastly different. Yes, the low-protein group gained less weight than the normal- and high-protein groups. BUT, the low protein group lost lean muscle mass and stored more fat – whereas the moderate and high protein groups increased toned muscle tissue and stored less fat. So, while the low protein gained the least weight, they were the ultimate losers with the most body fat out of all the groups.
 
Numerous studies have been carried out in investigating the effects of macronutrient ratios in breakfasts. For example, in a study in 2008 in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition researchers showed that a high-protein breakfast decreased your hunger hormone ghrelin (the hormone that screams at you to eat!) far better than a high-carbohydrate breakfast.  
 
Now, before we go and burn our cereal boxes and start ordering bacon and eggs, I simply want to suggest an element of caution when approaching the supposed figure friendly cereal aisle. Carbohydrates appear to be getting a massively bad rap at the moment – but like everything – moderation is the key. Just like cutting out fat, if you cut out all carbohydrates, you will also be doing your body a disservice.

First things first, this research demonstrated:
  1. The Importance of breakfast to set your metabolic tone for the day.
  2. The need for protein and fat in your breakfast.
Now, if you are consuming a typical bowl of “healthy cereal” splashed in skim milk and topped with banana, you’re getting about 65 grams of carbs, only 5 grams of protein and a mere 2 grams of fat. Not exactly going to fill you up until lunchtime. The take home? Start re-evaluating your concept of the “healthy breakfast” and start adding some protein and fat into the equation. I think you will be pleasantly surprised at how your body looks and how steady your energy levels are throughout the day! 

10 Food Combinations to Improve Digestion


I think there is a whole in depth of science behind this article but perhaps this is just the tip of the iceberg to have a think of what food goes into your body first.

I used to go straight into my carbs on my plate but these days I start of with vegetables, knowing that they are the easiest to digest, followed by bits of meat and combine them, then slowly with the carbs.

Anyway, I barely touch carbs for dinner :P. Only have them for lunch to get me on the run and workout later in the evening. And yes, with work and exercise, dinner gets so late I tend to have something light not to feel 'bloated' before I sleep.

Give it a try regardless!

Courtesy of MindbodyGreen


One of the fundamental aspects of a nourishing lifestyle is to maximize your body’s ability to digest and assimilate nutrients. Eating foods in combinations that promote optimal digestion empowers your body to use the nutrients to fuel biochemical reactions that promote health andwellness, rather than create inflammation, malabsorption, weakened intestinal wall, and an open door to infection and disease. 

You can improve the digestibility of your meal by making these food combinations:
  1. Protein and non-starchy vegetable
  2. Organic chicken and kale salad
  3. Wild-caught salmon with steamed peppers and onion
  4. Grains/starchy veggies and non-starchy veggies
  5. Brown rice with vegetable stir-fry
  6. Sweet potato and asparagus
  7. Oils and non-starchy veggies
  8. Avocado and salad
  9. Olive oil or coconut oil on steamed veggies
  10. Fruit by itself
For example, animal foods need an acid environment to fully digest, whereas carbohydrate-rich foods need an alkaline environment to digest. When these foods are eaten together, like a steak and potato kind of meal, the protein and carbohydrates will create a neutral environment where both the protein and carbohydrate will not digest fully or correctly. Improper digestion can lead to digestive distress, food allergies, autoimmune disease, inflammatory diseases, toxicity, and more.

Knowing that protein and grain/carbohydrate combinations lead to improper digestion, you can see how lentils and beans get a bad reputation for being hard to digest. This is in part because of some sugars in beans that cause gas. Also present are enzyme inhibitors that prevent the bean from growing into a plant. 

Soaking beans, lentils, nuts, and grains overnight, or at least for a few hours, will break down some of the cellulose, deteriorate those gas-causing sugars, and inactivate the enzyme inhibitors, thus improving their digestibility. If you wanted to even further improve their digestibility, sprouting the seeds/grains/legumes for another day or two will initiate the plant’s growth, increasing enzymes and nutrient content.  

Improving digestive health is key to any nourishing lifestyle. Look at it this way: 70% of your immune system in your gut and 95% of serotonin produced in your GI tract. The gastrointestinal system clearly plays a crucial role in maintaining the health of the body! 

Food combining, digestive enzymes, healing the intestinal wall with supportive nutrients, avoiding depleting foods like alcohol and refined sugars, reducing toxin and food allergy exposure, and taking targeted digestive support supplements can transform your body and give you the health and wellness you’ve been looking for.

Friday, November 16, 2012

5 Advantages of Drinking Water in the Morning

And now that it's the weekend, you can try this!

Courtesy of undergroundhealthreport.com. Original post here


Happy Weekend all

When you do good, you feel good =)


Wednesday, November 14, 2012

How to Change Your Limiting Beliefs – The Ultimate Guide

Stumble across this and I found the pictures quite useful!! Got me pondering about things that I have been stuck with my life all these while that I find limits my potential.

Seriously, if I stop myself from coming out of my comfort zone to teach because I knew had a bad temper, I'd be stuck in my day job sulking each day...

Thanks Vlad from Alive with Passion! Original article here


Change limiting beliefs
by VLAD DOLEZAL on MARCH 5, 2010
Elephant keepers in India have an interesting way of keeping their elephants from running away. They tie them to a wooden peg with a rope.
It doesn’t make sense on the surface, since a rope like that has no hope of holding a grown elephant. But ask any elephant keeper and he will chuckle and explain:
When a baby elephant is born, the herder ties it to a peg with a rope. At this point, the rope is strong enough to hold the elephant.
The baby elephant quickly learns that trying to escape the rope is futile. And he keeps that learning with him, even as he grows up and the rope becomes far too weak to hold him.
And like that rope, we often form beliefs that might be useful at first, but then hold us back in life, long after the original reasons are gone.
I won’t go into much detail on why limiting beliefs suck. If you’re reading this, you probably already know that they do! (If not, just google it).
Instead, I’ll get right into how to change them!
So get ready, because soon you will learn how to dissolve emotional superglue, cut off table legs of evidence, and replace limiting beliefs with empowering ones!

What is a belief, exactly?

I covered this briefly in EVERYTHING Is A Belief. If you don’t feel like reading it, here are the key points:
  • there is no “true” or “false” with beliefs, only useful and detrimental
  • a belief is just the best available explanation of the evidence you observe
This time, we’ll dig a bit deeper. And I’ve prepared some pictures to help you understand :D (behold my artistic skills…)
Think of a belief as a tabletop. The legs are the supporting evidence. And sometimes the legs are even superglued to the floor of your mind with emotions.
(Here in the UK we weirdos call it “maths” because it’s short for mathematics. If that confuses you, just pretend I say “math” throughout this article ;) )
And to break a limiting belief, you will first need to get rid of the superglue, then get rid of the evidence, and only then can you change it.
Here’s the step-by-step process:

Changing your limiting beliefs

Let’s go through this process together. This will work best if you pick a limiting belief, and go through this process with that in mind.

1. Identify a limiting belief

Take a few moments to think about beliefs you hold that might be holding you back.
It can be in the form “I am …” or just about the world in general. As long as you think it might be holding you back, that will work.
Remember, there is no true or false with beliefs. Only useful and detrimental. Don’t worry about “truth”, and instead decide if it’s useful to you, or if a different belief would be more useful.
For example, you might believe that “The recession is a bad time to start a business”. That would definitely be more limiting than “There will always be demand for exceptional products and services.”
Take a few moments to pick a limiting belief. You can still carry on reading if you can’t think of anything, but it would be really helpful if you do.

2. Choose a belief you would like to have instead

This will become important later (when we dislodge the evidence for your old, limiting belief and replace it with evidence for the new one).
I think this step is pretty self-explanatory, so I’ll just give you two examples:
old: “I am unattractive.”
new: “I can attract just the right partner for me.”
old: “I will never earn over $30,000 a year.”
new: “I can earn as much as I want for my ideal life.”

3. Get rid of the emotional superglue

Very often, beliefs have an emotional charge attached to them.
I was at a life coaching seminar recently and I heard a great example of this. We talked about beliefs, and one woman in her forties put up her hand timidly:
“Yes?” Asked the presenter.
“I still believe in Santa Claus and the tooth fairy,” she piped up.
The presenter dug a bit deeper. It turns out the woman still believed in those things, because it brought her the feelings of:
  • being in touch with her roots
  • sharing the culture with other people
And so she held on to it. Note that this was NOT a limiting belief for her. She lived her life quite fine with it.
I just wanted to give you an example of beliefs giving emotional payoffs.
With that in mind, once you’ve identified your limiting belief, think about the emotional payoff it gives you.
For example, thinking you suck at maths might give you:
  • commiserating with friends who also claim to suck at maths
  • giving up responsibility for your maths grade
  • avoiding being called a “geek”
  • and many others…
The emotional payoff you get is unique to you.
Once you’ve figured out what it gives you, it’s time for the all-important question: Is the emotional payoff worth holding on to this belief?
Take a good few moments to answer this. Because you know what? Sometimes the answer is “yes”. In which case you can stop right there, because no technique (except advanced psychotherapy) will help you change something you don’t want to change.
But let’s say you decide the emotional payoff isn’t really worth the limitation. You decide you want to change!
At this point, you’ve already begun dissolving the emotional superglue. There’s still some left, but every time you remind yourself that you really want to change, it gets weaker.
(Using the Pain and Pleasure Principle might help at this point. It will help you increase the motivation to change and decrease the motivation to stick with your old beliefs.)

4. Re-frame the evidence

Remember how a belief is just the best available explanation for the evidence?
Well, you decide what is the “best” explanation for the evidence! You can easily choose an alternate explanation that doesn’t limit you. And once you do, this new way of thinking about the evidence often makes more sense than the old one!
Let’s go with the tabletop, and re-frame the evidence so it no longer supports “I suck at maths”:
Evidence 1:
I failed the last two tests
Alternate explanation:
I haven’t studied properly for them. I used the wrong studying methods.
Evidence 2:
I got an answer wrong in class
Alternate explanation:
I was tired
or
Even the best students sometimes get it wrong. Getting an answer wrong is not an indication of maths skills.
or
I have become better at maths by stepping up and getting the chance to fail and get feedback.
Evidence 3:
My mother said it’s her genes
Alternate explanation:
Robert has parents who claim they suck at maths, yet he’s a maths genius.
Notice how the evidence no longer supports “I suck at maths”?
Some evidence might take a bit of skill to re-frame. But with a bit of practice, you can easily dislodge most evidence for your negative beliefs quickly.
Take a moment now to re-frame the evidence for you own limiting belief. (You’re carrying one in mind as we go along, right?)
Also, sometimes you will find it hard, or even impossible to reframe all of the evidence. That’s ok. As long as you take away as many supporting legs as possible, you will be able to shift the belief with this next step:

5. Find evidence for your new belief

Beliefs have a funny way of operating.
They focus your mind on certain things… so you completely miss things that are inconsistent with those beliefs.
If you believe you’re unattractive, you will notice all the snide remarks and dirty looks – yet completely miss the smiles, greetings and compliments, or just discount them as irrelevant.
Because of this, beliefs automatically snowball. Once a belief gains certain weight, it will start to tack on more and more legs of evidence, and ignore any contrary evidence. So deep-seated beliefs might take several sessions like this, over several days, to get rid of. But the process still works.
In this step, you will actively find all the evidence you can think of to support your new belief!
Think back to all the things that happened in your life, no matter how small or irrelevant they seem, that support it.
The goal here is to establish as many legs as possible. If you get enough evidence, this new belief will blow the old one right out.
And once the new belief become entrenched in your mind, it will start to accumulate even more evidence for itself! Suddenly, the snowballing effect works in your favour! :D
So take a few moments to remember all the evidence from your life that supports your new belief.

Summary and next actions

Hopefully, you’ve gone through this post with a limiting belief in mind. If you did, you already know how well this method works.
If you couldn’t think of one, that’s ok. You now know what to do the next time you notice one!
To summarize:
  1. Identify a limiting belief
  2. Pick a belief you would like to hold instead
  3. Get rid of the emotional superglue
  4. Cut off the table legs of evidence by reframing them
  5. Gather as much evidence as possible for your new empowering belief
And as you practice this method, it will become ever easier and more effective. You might even start noticing limiting beliefs that your friends hold. Feel free to share this method with them- I want as many people as possible to benefit from this!
And even though the effect might be small at first… it builds up over time. Like the butterfly flapping its wings that causes a tornado in the distant future – swapping out your limiting belief for an empowering one will have bigger and bigger positive consequences as you go through life!
Make the best of this method. It will serve you well!