Lemon Water

Standard

 Every since I did Shred, I have been drinking lemon water    each and every morning. I stopped for about a week, and my digestion was just not the same, so I started back and have been happy ever since. I have tried organic and non-organic lemons and the difference is taste, not results. The organic lemon water has less of a bitter taste and much more of a refreshing taste. The ratio I use is 8 oz water to the juice of 1/2 a lemon. There is absolutely no point in doing this with anything except fresh lemon juice, otherwise you are not getting the benefits. I drink the water first thing, before I am even aware of life :-).

 The benefits of drinking lemon water:

1.Lemon water will help you cleanse your body of toxins, which is going to show on your skin. Lemons are full of skin-rejuvinating and anti-aging products.

2. Lemon water will improve your digestion. The lemon juice will activate the production of bile in your digestive system and when combined with water it will flush out the unwelcome stuff from your body to help with bloating and heartburn.

3. Lemon water eliminates headaches.

4. Lemon water fights infections. The high amount of Vitamin C in lemons fights illness.

5. Lemon water helps with weight loss. Lemons are full of pectin fiber, which will regulate your hunger levels.

Source: Zuzkalight.com

 

 

Advertisements

My Green Smoothie Formulas

Standard

After months of drinking Green Smoothies, with lost of experimentation, I have created two fail-safte recipes in which you can insert your favorite combos:

Recipe 1

2.5 Cups of Greens

1/2 Cup Juice

1/2 Banana, Pear  or Apple

1/2 Cup Fruit 1

1 Cup Fruit 2

Recipe 2

2.5 Cups of Greens

1 Banana, Pear, or Apple

1/2 Cup Fruit 1

1 Cup Fruit 2

*My only exception to this rule is when using kiwi, no need for the banana, pear, or apple.

As far as greens go, you can’t really go wrong. Feel free to separate the two and a half cups any way you please, maybe half cup of cilantro with two cups spinach, etc. The only green I am careful of is Romaine Lettuce, it has an earthy taste no matter what, so I am sure to use lemon juice when using it. Otherwise, the green you use simply affects texture, not taste. If you use a fruit that is not quite ripe, squirt a little Agave Nectar in there. I often add Milled Flaxseed, Chia Seeds, Cacao Powder, or any nutritious additive I please. Be sure to use organic greens and fruits to ensure you get their actual nutritional value, check out your local farmers market(s)and farms for the best deals and the ripest fruits and veggies.

My favorite fruit combos are:

Kiwi + Strawberry

Pineapple + Mango

Pear + Peach

Peach + Banana

Green Apple + Peach

Grapes + ANYTHING

Papaya + Pineapple

My favorite veggies to use are:

Kale

Spinach

Cucumber

Celery

Collard Greens

Carrots

May favorite juice bases are (make sure you use Pure Juice, I use Lakewood):

Orange (Sometimes Florida’s Natural)

Apple

Pomegranate

Goji Berry

Papaya

I’ve been drinking at least one green smoothie a day for 3 months now, and I could not be happier with that choice. They are addictive, tasty, very nutritious, a great post workout meal, a great meal replacement, etc. I could go on and on. Note: If you add a dark fruit, you will end up with a brown smoothie, which probably looks even less appetizing than a green smoothie :-). Now I just need to save enough money to buy a high powered blender (dreaming!) In the mean time, my Ninja Master Prep Pro is doing the job.

If you have any recipes you love, please share in the comments below. If you try one of my combos, tell me if you love it, hate it, or are ambivalent. I hope this encourages someone to give green smoothies a go!

Turkey Burgers

Standard

I am now buying my ground Turkey from the health food store, I actually watch them grind the turkey after this article. This way I know that is is clean and coming from the health food store, I also know that it is antibiotic free.  I have been looking for a great Turkey Burger recipe, because to be hones, up to now I have not been a fan of Turkey Burgers. I have found that they have very little flavor, but I knew that was more than likely my fault because I was looking for them to taste like Beef Burgers. Once I stopped comparing to beef, I was more receptive to them. I grill them on my George Foreman grill, but now that its summer in Florida again, my BF and I will be firing up the Grill more often.

On to the best recipe I have found, this recipe is undeniably delicious and very nutritious:

3 Day Detox

Standard

Well, my detox was quite successful, I ate raw food the whole weekend and celebrated for making it to the end with a Coronarita + chips and salsa from Applebees. You may say to yourself, well that was self sabotage, but I would say to you that it was exactly what I needed. I decided that I cannot cut out sweets just yet. I need to allow myself to slowly learn to control my sweet tooth by controlling my intake gradually. So, I am going to allow myself one sweet binge once a week until I feel that I can space it out more than that. Other than that, I am doing a great job at eating healthy. My raw food weekend consisted of salads, green smoothies, and lots of tea. Check out my Instagram for the specific salads I ate.

I am very proud of myself for making it through those three days because on day two I was sooooo hungry, craving everything, and just plain unhappy, but I drank some tea and kept on going. So far this week, my metabolism seems to be amped up, I have lots of energy, and all is right with the world!

3 Reasons Why You Can’t Lost Weight

Standard
By: Dr. Phoenyx Austin
For the past few weeks you’ve been trying to exercise more, eat healthy, and overall you think you’ve been doing pretty well. Until you hop on the bathroom scale and discover that you haven’t lost any weight! And now panic sets in: Good Lord, I’ve got 2 months to get into that two-piece! Why aren’t I losing any weight?!

Now first off, I want you to calm down girl because what you’re experiencing is pretty common. And you do still have time to make it into that two-piece- I promise! We just have to figure out what you’re doing wrong and tighten things up. Here are 3 common reasons why you can’t lose weight:

Reason #1: You’re eating back all the calories you burn

When you want to lose weight, you’ll need to focus on creating a calorie deficit– which is basically an imbalance between the calories you’re eating and the calories you’re burning off. More calories outthan calories in creates a calorie deficit. And sustaining this calorie deficit consistently over an extended period of time is what leads to weight loss.

Now let’s say you want to lose weight- say, one pound a week. Because one pound of fat is equal to 3,500 calories, it stands to reason that you should create a calorie deficit of approximately 3,500 calories per week (or a calorie deficit of 500 calories per day) to lose one pound per week. OK, so now that you know this, you confidently start your diet and exercise routine. For the first few days or weeks, you’re on top of things and keeping track of your calories in versus calories out. But then something happens. One day you hit the gym and then you use the ‘I exercised today’ excuse to overeat later in the day. Then another day you overeat and say something like, “I’ll just work out extra hard tomorrow to burn it off.” Then another day you make another excuse for overeating. And now guess what you’ve done? You’ve decreased your calorie deficit. And this is why you’re not losing weight. Because you’re eating (or even drinking) back all the calories you’ve burned. So the takeaway is this: Don’t fall into the trap of overeating because you’ve exercised (or plan to exercise later). Believe me, I know how easy it can be to rationalize having that extra bit of food after Zumba class, but don’t do it ladies. Remember exercise can help you lose weight, but not when you’re eating back all the calories you’ve burned.

Reason #2: You’re eating too much sugar and refined carbs

I have a weight loss motto and that motto is this:

 You can’t ‘out-exercise’ a crappy diet

That said, one reason why I strongly advise keeping a food journal is because people have this incredible knack for totally underestimating the junk they eat. Plus, people like to delude themselves into believing that exercise will make up for poor food choices. But that’s just not how it works. Truth is, all calories are not created equal and all foods don’t affect our bodies in the same way. Take a diet that is high in sugar and refined carbs for example. Let’s say you’ve worked the numbers so you’re able to create a calorie deficit while still allowing yourself the pleasure of eating a diet that’s high in sugar and refined carbs like soda, white bread, white rice, and pasta. Sweet! Now you don’t have to give up your goodies, and since exercising too, everything should work out. Except when you go to weigh yourself after a few weeks of this “awesome” diet, you notice that you still haven’t lost any weight- or maybe even gained weight! Huh?! What gives?! 

Here’s what gives: A diet that’s high in sugar and refined carbs works to promote a condition calledhyperinsulinemia– which is just the medical term for high insulin release due to too much sugar in the blood. And hyperinsulinemia prevents weight loss because it makes it harder for our body to burn fat. In fact, hyperinsulinemia puts your body in a state where it’s constantly wanting to store fat! Yeah, how do you like that? So going back to my earlier point, this is precisely why I say that exercise should not be used to make up for a bad diet. You have to exercise and you have to eat a diet that’s rich in whole foods, such as the Paleo Diet. And furthermore, if you want to help put your body in a state where it wants to burn fat and not constantly store it, you’re going to have to cut back on the sugars and refined carbs.

 Reason #3: You’re not lifting weights

Now the last point I wanted to touch on is the importance of mixing in a bit of weightlifting with cardio, because it’s pretty much a given that when the average woman wants to lose weight, she’ll most likely put all her energy into things like the treadmill or elliptical. But here’s the thing about cardio: While cardio is good for burning calories, it doesn’t discriminate in the type of weight that’s lost. Meaning, cardio will burn muscle tissue as well as fat. So yeah, when you do lots of cardio you’ll lose weight, but you’ll also lose muscle mass. And less muscle mass will lead to a lower basal metabolic rate, which will lead to less fat burning potential over time, which ultimately means it’ll be harder to lose weight as you get older. This is one of the very reasons why it’s usually so much easier for men to lose weight than women- even as they age. It comes down to 2 things: 1) men naturally have more muscle mass than us, and 2) men focus on lifting weights and building more muscle (which helps improve their basal metabolic rate). So now that you know the fellas’ little secret, just make sure to also throw in a bit of strength training when you workout too. Do this and you’ll be approaching weight loss the super smart way: by using cardio for immediate calorie burning, and by using strength training to preserve and build lean muscle that’ll help you to continue burning more calories throughout the day.

————————-
Picture 4Dr. Phoenyx Austin is a physician, author, and creator of the fitness blog,DrPhoenyx.com. Check out Dr. Phoenyx’s awesome natural hair care book

If You Love It, It Will Grow – available on AmazonBarnes & Noble, andiTunes. And don’t forget to say hello to the Doc on FacebookInstagramand Twitter!

Three Day Reboot/Detox

Standard

This blog is to track my journey to health, so I think its just as important to keep track of the failures. So far this month, I have failed at eating healthy. Don’t get me wrong, I have mostly been eating healthy, but almost every day I have been doing something that is unhealthy, like eating candy, eating donuts, or eating too many calories. As a result I have decided to do a 3 day reboot, beginning today. During these three days I will only eat fruits, vegetables, and nuts; plus I will drink lots of tea, green and herbal teas. I plan to drink green smoothies fore every meal, and eat vegetables for side dishes, and nuts for snacking. Just for three days, then I will go back to eating on my current health plan. This will give me the opportunity to use up the extra supply of stuff in my fridge and freezer. I will continue to exercise as that I has not fallen by the wayside (that seems to be the easy part of being fit for me). I will report exactly what I ate and drank for these three days come Monday.

I love the Green Plate Rule website

May Challenges

Standard

I know its about half way through May, but I have been quite busy, and its better late than never. So, for food this month, i have challenged myself to eating a salad each day. This salad can be a meal, a side salad, or even a snack, I just have to eat a salad each day. I am still drinking one green smoothie a day, I buy them from my local smoothie shop when necessary, but I like to make my own because I put lots more greens in my smoothie than the smoothie shop does.Other than that, I am just trying to maintain my healthy eating changes so far.

For fitness, as I wrote in my last post, I hit a plateau, so I just wanted to be basic this month and decided to just amp up my running. I have committed to running at least four times a week. I went to my local running store and got fitted for a pair of running shoes and joined a local running club. I would also like to run a race at some point this year, I am not sure the length or even when I will do so, but I plan to accomplish that goal by the end of the year.

shoes

That is all! This month I am keeping things simple, trying to maintain, while enjoying  a healthier me. I am still 143 lbs, but I am okay with that because  I am eating tons healthier than I was when this year began.