During the holidays, or anytime really, sugar is everywhere! So, how can we enjoy the sweet treats and not feel guilty? Plus, make sure you’re eating the right kind of sugar!
One aspect of our health is mental health. In the last blog post I discussed all about a healthy mind. Read it here.
This post is all about a physically healthy mind: our brain.
Our brains are so important! (Hello- without a brain we can’t live!) They protect us from illness, control our central nervous system, keep us safe, amongst a zillion other things. So, keeping our brains healthy is super important.
So, what can we do to keep our brains healthy?
Here’s my top 5 tips:
1. Exercise your brain
Yup. Do activities and games that stretch your thinking. Cross lateral movements help both hemispheres of your brain communicate better. Puzzles and games like sudoku (my personal favorite) keep your mind sharp. Also, learning a new skill or playing an instrument can also help exercise your brain.
2. Eat nutrient rich foods for brain health
These would include:
- dark leafy greens
- seafood – especially smaller oily fish like salmon or sardines
- coconut oil
- dark chocolate (Hello! Yes Please!)
- pasture raised eggs
3. Drink lots of water.
Our brains are more than 75% water, so keeping them hydrated is of upmost importance. I recommend to my clients to drink between 50% & 75% of their body weight in ounces of water a day. This is a general number. Make sure you honor your body and give it the water it desires. (My body requires more like 75-100% of my body weight on ounces of water a day.)
4. Avoid foods that can cause brain issues
This would be sugar, artificial anything, gluten, and sometimes dairy. Sugars and gluten especially are detrimental to the brain. Some doctors are calling Alzheimer’s Type 3 diabetes. This is because of how the body is responding to sugar. Gluten has so many pesticides that the brain can’t help but be affected (yes, even organic grains can have pesticides). And many Alzheimer’s patients are seeing reduced or eliminated symptoms from no longer consuming sugar and/or gluten.
5. Reduce stress
Stress cause so many negative symptoms in our bodies when we don’t deal with the stress properly. Our bodies can actually store stress in our joints, muscles, and brain. This wreaks havoc on our health. We can’t eliminate stress, but we can manage it better.
Find at least one relaxing activity a day just for you. And maybe that’s just taking 2 minutes to breathe deeply. Or maybe it’s a hot bubble bath, a walk, or cuddling with warm blankets out of the dryer. Find something that soothes you. And give control to God. Let Him deal with the overwhelming parts of life. He wants to. And when we can finally give up control we will notice an immediate sense of peace and relief.
If we adopt a lifelong habit of caring for our brains and bodies then the likelihood of brain disease down the road will be dramatically diminished.
Want a cure for Alzheimer’s? Stop eating sugar!
I feel like everyone is tired. Including myself. We’ve been running ourselves ragged, filling our schedules, and in turn are depleted.
So, how can we have more energy and still do all the things?
Here are 5 ways we can gain more energy today:
1. Get more sleep
This one may seem obvious, but some of us struggle to get the amount of sleep we need. The optimal time we need to go to bed is set by our own circadian rhythm. So, listen to your body. When do you get sleepy? Do a little experiment and try out a few different bedtimes and a few different number of sleep hours and see how you feel.
Side note: We’re going to need different amounts of sleep for different times in our lives. So, honor the season you’re in.
2. Stop eating sugar
I may get shot over this one! 😜 But sugar actually depletes our energy. I know that is counter intuitive, because if you need a pick me up you probably grab something sugary. Sugar actually takes a ton of energy to process and it steals that energy away from you! Instead, try eating something with more protein: nut butter (sugar free of course), cheese, or any food that gives you energy.
Want a list of Magic Snacks I share with my clients? Email me and request it!
3. Do a detox
Over time our digestive system gets buildup. This could be from toxins or foods that aren’t the best for our bodies or other sources. Think of it kind of like the pipes in your drain. Occasionally, we need to unclog the buildup. While our digestive system is far more sensitive than our kitchen drain, it still needs cleaning out. I like to do a simple detox a couple times a year to keep “my pipes” working the best they can.
Click here to read more about the detox I use myself.
It doesn’t seem to make sense to use energy to gain more energy. But, that’s exactly what happens with exercise. Movement actually triggers endorphins in our brain to tell us we’re happy and we have energy. So, find a movement you enjoy and get to it!
5. Say No
You may be asked to do some really amazing, good things! They honor God, serve your community, or even help the homeless. But if you’re overworked and exhausted, saying no may be the best thing for you.
I recently had to say no to helping out with a charity event because it didn’t fit in my schedule and honestly, I didn’t feel God telling me to do it. It’s hard to say no to good things. But, what’s most important is that you honor God in your decisions. Pray about it and ask God what he wants you to do.
This is obviously a short list of ideas to help you get more energy. So, what would you add to this list? How do you get more energy?
Maybe you’re thinking, “What is all this talk about detoxing? And why in the world would I even consider it?”
Well, detoxing is actually an amazing experience that can leave you feeling lighter, tighter, and soooo amazing. Here’s 10 benefits you can experience in less than 14 days:
10. Reducing or eliminating auto-immune symptoms.
Do you struggle with an auto-immune disease that your doctors can’t seem to get a grip on? Have they suggested a detox? If not, this is a great one to try because it’s gentle on the body and very effective. If you have auto-immune symptoms you are likely very toxic. So, a detox would be amazing for your organs and digestion!
9. Losing weight and inches
We will be taking out all sugars and caffeine out of our diet for 14 days (you can do this! I’m here to help!). See, fat doesn’t cause us to be fat. Sugar causes us to be fat. Taking sugar out of the diet – even for just a short time – can help us shed pounds, inches, and feel lighter.
8. Reducing headaches and joint pain
Sometimes a build-up of toxins can cause pain and headaches. Our bodies are designed to process and eliminate toxins. However, when we overload our body with toxins it can’t process them quick enough. So, the body stores the toxins to deal with later in our joints, muscles, and organs. As you can imagine this causes pain and decreased efficiency of our body.
7. Reduce or eliminate heartburn
Belching, feeling gassy, or having heartburn after meals is often a sign of digestive upset. Taking some time to detox will help your digestion work better creating less gas and bubbles in your tummy.
6. Think clearer
Ever feel like your brain is foggy and you can’t remember anything? Actually detoxing your digestive system can eliminate this fogginess and help you think clearer.
5. Take control of sinus and allergy symptoms
Certain foods can cause inflammation in our bodies and sometimes even cause sensitivities or allergic reactions. We’ll be taking out the most common food allergens to reduce these symptoms and allow you to test and see if your body has any adverse reactions or sensitivities to any food. In addition, we’ll be filling our bodies with nutrient-dense foods, like fruits and veggies, to reinvigorate the gut.
4. Eliminate food cravings
Our bodies desire balance. When we eat too much of one kind of food it will begin to crave it or crave the opposite of it. For example, if we eat too much salty food our bodies will crave sweet food to balance it out. Then when we eat sweet food our bodies ride the blood sugar roller coaster – sugar high to sugar low. Then we crave more sugar. It’s tricky to balance it out. This cleanse will help you eliminate those cravings and help create more balance in your diet.
3. Double your energy
Ever get that foggy headed, super sleepy feeling around 2, 3, 4:00? Sometimes the food we eat actually causes us to lose energy and get sleepy. Our bodies are telling us to take a nap (and most of the time we can’t lay down in the office for a snooze). So, taking control of our food intake can give us an abundance of energy.
2. Reduce or even eliminate anxiety and mood swings
Sometimes, negative emotions can be increased simply by the food we eat. Eliminating common trouble foods will help you reduce or eliminate anxiety helping you take control of your emotions. Who doesn’t want less anxiety!?!?
1. Feel amazing
You will be amazed at how good you will feel on this cleanse. If there are ANY symptoms, emotions, pain, or moods you want to get rid of – then detoxing is on your to-do list! During a cleanse, we give our digestive tract a vacation from the stress of hard to process foods. I’ve had clients tell me they felt the best they had in years after detoxing! Why wait to feel better?!?!
If you’re interested in learning more about detoxing or about the specific 14 Day Reset Cleanse I offer let me know! Let’s help you feel better today!
I went to bed last night not feeling the best and when I woke up this morning my throat was scratchy and I had a very heavy head. And I knew exactly what it was and why I was in this boat. It was the food choices I made this week that put me there.
See, I am on the outer edge of a major health journey in which I completely renewed my gut microbiome. However, I am still on that edge. I still have flare ups when I am not making the best choices for my body. My symptoms include sinus irritations/infections, allergies, UTIs, and soooooo tired. All these are brought on by one little ingredient – and one thing I’ve struggled to say no to this week.
Yup. Sugar. That sweet, melt in your mouth, so delicious, and addictive sugar.
So why is sugar so addictive? Well, when you eat sugar your pancreas secretes a hormone called insulin to bring your blood sugar back into balance. And when it sees sugar in the blood – to your brain and body – this is an EMERGENCY! So your body often secretes too much insulin and your body goes into a blood sugar crash. Yikes!
Then, when you’re down there in that nasty crash what do you think your body craves? You got it! More sugar! So you eat more sugar and you’ve gotten yourself on a blood sugar roller coaster. And it’s very hard to get off that roller coaster once it gets started.
And there’s more to that story too. Sometimes, there are things in our life that we are unsatisfied with. Perhaps our career, our relationships, our finances, our workouts, our sex life, our family, where we, live, the weather….whatever. Sometimes it’s so much easier to reach for sugar than deal with what’s really going on. And I get that.
See, I was in a job for 17 years that slowly began to drain the life out of my soul. And looking back I definitely had some increased sugar cravings during that time.
A craving may seem like a pain in the butt. BUT, what if cravings were a messenger to help you step into the best version of who you are?!?! That would be pretty amazing!