Tag Archives: healthy lifestyle

The difference between Resolutions & Goals

How many people make the resolution for weight loss each year and how many stick to it? The great thing about resolutions is that they can give you a fresh perspective: Out with the old, in with the new. Like a fresh start.

But the problem is that resolutions fade, and fade fast! Most resolutions are just goals anyways, drink more water, run a marathon, lose weight. SO if you are into resolutions setting, it may be more attainable to think of it as more of a goal. Here are things to keep in mind when setting goals/ resolutions:

  1. Make a plan for a path you need to follow to accomplish the goal. Create actionable steps to follow
  2. Establish times for checking your profess in your calendar system, whatever it is: a day planner, a phone or a hand written list.
  3. Take a look at all the factors that are keeping you from accomplishing your goal and develop a plan to overcome them!
  4. Think about SMART goals: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Time-Based.

Finally make sure you are specific. “Drink more water” is a great resolution but is very vague. While it’s a goal, it’s hard to visualize the steps to get there. And if that’s the case, it’s easier to forget about it.

 

Boost your immune system with food

TITLE: Boost your immune system with food!

Garlic

Widely known for its medicinal properties, garlic contains allicin, an active ingredient which has been shown to aid the body in fighting infection and bacteria. SFL recommends to cut up a couple raw cloves into small pieces and swallow the pieces whole at the first sign of a cold and to eat one clove a day until fully well.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C helps to build muscle tissue and boost immunity. Most people just think of citrus fruits such as oranges to contain Vitamin C. But if you’re looking for sources beyond the oranges, grab some broccoli and kiwifruit – they both have high levels of Vitamin C.

Yogurt

Yogurt is a good source of ‘healthy’ bacteria and helps boost your immune system. Make sure you increase your intake of yogurt if you start taking antibiotics for an infection. This will help keep your system balanced as you need healthy bacteria in your system and antibiotics will kill both bad and good bacteria.

Ginger

Ginger can help ease the nasal congestion that goes with common colds and the flu. Consider making ginger tea by slicing a little ginger root with boiling water, and a slice of lemon.

Horseradish

This plant can ease throat and upper respiratory tract infection and it will help clear out your sinuses. It has antibiotic properties; it also has been shown specifically to destroy the flu virus and reduce the severity of flu infections.

Water

Remember to consume extra water when you are fighting an infection to keep your kidneys and liver filtering out toxins.

Create and Achieve your own Smart Goals

TITLE: Create and Achieve your own smart Goals

So, you’ve spent time dreaming about being healthy and feeling good, but remember: “A dream is just a dream. A goal is a dream with a plan and a deadline.”

Make sure you have a goal and a plan in place and stick with it. Try the SMART goals method when it comes to your health:

Pick a goal: ie drink your 2 litres of water on Monday, or everyday this week. Use these guidelines to make sure your goal is achiev¬able and that you will reach it:

  • Specific: your goal must be specific.
  • Measurable: you need to be able to measure it.
  • Attainable: is it attainable? If not you need to re-adjust your goal.
  • Realistic: it must be something that is realistic for the time of year.
  • Time related: give it a deadline.
  • Come up with barriers that may hinder you to attain your goal and try to figure out how to overcome those barriers before they happen.

This Grain is good for your Gut

If regular bread and grains leave you feeling bloated and uncomfortable, you might be tempted to give up grains altogether. However, there is one ancient grain that won’t leave you feeling bad and it also offers some great health benefits. Here’s a little info on spelt–the grain that’s good for your gut.

An ancient grain

Spelt’s been around for a long time–around 8000 years. It’s closely related to wheat and has been used in cooking and baking for thousands of years. At one time, spelt was used pretty much the same way wheat is used today, but with the adoption of wheat as a favourite grain, most countries stopped growing spelt. Today, it’s making a comeback.

Great grain for digestive health

Spelt can be used pretty much like any other bread flour, but it has one unique property–it doesn’t bloat you like wheat does. It is also very high in fiber, which can help battle digestive issues such as constipation, gas, bloating, and diarrhea.

If eating other grains leaves you feeling uncomfortable, try eating bread or baked goods made with spelt instead. It’s high in protein as well as fiber, iron, and even B6, so it provides plenty of energy for your body to use. Plus, it can keep you feeling full for longer.

Other health benefits

Because it’s high in fiber, spelt can help lower your cholesterol and improve your overall heart health when it’s consumed as part of a heart-healthy diet. It can also improve circulation, thanks to the high levels of iron and copper in the grain.

The high levels of niacin in spelt may help regulate hormones, particularly sex hormones. It’s also beneficial for bone health, thanks to the multitude of minerals like magnesium, zinc, and copper found in the grain. It has also shown some promise in helping to regulate insulin levels, which could mean that it may be beneficial in helping to control diabetes.

Find spelt at your local grocery or health food store and see for yourself how it compares to other grains.

Back to School… parent tested, kid approved

The feel of crisp, almost-fall air in the morning will forever remind me of one thing: back to school. Fresh haircuts, stark white sneakers, a new pack of pencils, and maybe even a new book bag– these are things that I know I looked forward to (maybe that’s the bookworm in me). Despite the excitement that comes along with back to school, there are a few things that can cause a bit of tension between parents and their kids: earlier bedtimes, homework, and the infamous lunch bag. It can be difficult to find snack ideas that are healthy, yet kid approved. That’s where we come in… *drumroll*… here are some delicious snack ideas that everyone will love.

Healthy Homemade Granola Bars

– 1½ cups mashed ripe banana (about 3 medium/large bananas)

– 1 tsp pure vanilla extract

– 2 cups rolled oats (or gluten free)

– ½-¾ cup dried cherries or cranberries, chopped

– ½ cup walnuts, chopped

– ½ cup sunflower seeds

– ½ cup shelled pumpkin seeds

– ½ cup sliced almonds

– ¼ cup hulled hemp seeds

– 1 tsp cinnamon

– Himalayan salt to taste

*Omit nuts if your school is nut free.

Preheat the oven to 350˚ F.

Lightly grease a large rectangular baking dish (approx. 8.5″ x 12.5″) and line with a piece of parchment paper so the bars are easier to lift out.

In a large bowl, mash the banana until smooth. Stir in the vanilla.

Place the rolled oats into a food processor (or blender on the lowest speed) and pulse until the oats are coarsely chopped (but still with lots of texture). Stir oats into the banana mixture. Chop the walnuts and cherries and stir these and the rest of the ingredients into the banana-oat mixture until thoroughly combined. Spoon mixture into prepared dish. Press down until compacted and smooth out with hands until even.

Bake for 23-27 minutes until firm and lightly golden along the edge. Place dish on a cooling rack for 10 minutes, then carefully slide a knife to loosen the ends and lift out. Place granola slab on a cooling rack for 10 minutes, then into the freezer for another 10 minutes.

Makes 14-16 bars.

Coconut Brownie Bites

– 1½ cups raw walnut halves

– ¼ cup cocoa powder

– ½ cup unsweetened shredded coconut

– 1 tsp vanilla extract

– ¼ tsp Himalayan salt

– 1 cup dates, pitted (about 10Medjool dates)

– 1 tbsp water

– Unsweetened cocoa powder, for coating (optional)

*Omit the nuts if your school is nut-free—you can replace them with seeds! If you’re not a big chocolate fan, you can replace the cocoa powder with a nut or seed butter, as well. Making balls with dates can be super versatile.

In a large food processor, grind the walnuts into a fine meal. Add the rest of the ingredients, and process until sticky, uniform dough is formed.

Scoop the batter with a tablespoon onto a plate or baking sheet lined with parchment paper, to prevent sticking.

Roll the balls between your hands, and roll them in cocoa powder, if desired.

Store the balls in the fridge or freezer, and serve them chilled for the firmest texture.

Makes 20-24 balls/brownie bites (1 serving = 2 brownie bites).

Healthy Apple Cinnamon Muffins

– 2 cups oats

– 1 tsp organic baking powder

– ¼ tsp Himalayan salt

– 1 tsp cinnamon

– 1 cup milk of choice

– 1 egg (preferably free-range!)

– ½ cup mashed banana (about 1½ medium banana)

– 1 large apple, peeled, cored, and diced

Preheat your oven to 375˚ F degrees.

In a large bowl, combine the oats, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. Add the milk, egg, and mashed banana and mix until combined. Stir in the apple.

Grease a muffin tin and fill each cup with the oatmeal mixture to just about the top. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until the cups are set.

Store in the fridge or these can also be frozen. Enjoy!

Makes 12 muffins.

Other things that you can do to make snacks more appealing (with the kids, or maybe your partner!) include:

– Placing fruits or veggies on skewers (skewers make eating anything more fun!).

– Making cut-out shapes of fruit or sandwiches.

– Replacing juice with fruit-infused water or 2% milk.

– Switch up dips and sauces—make a homemade vinaigrette, hummus, or tzatziki!

– Simply letting the kids help with prep! They will be proud of what they made.

We hope that these snacks will make lunch bag packing a little better

Wake me up when September ends…

Benefits of food preperation

If you don’t plan to succeed, you are planning to fail. Planning is about more than just mentally preparing yourself for the week–meal prep is also crucial for your success. Here are some of the benefits of food preparation at the beginning of the week.

Less temptation to cheat on your diet

When you’re in a hurry or tired, you’ll grab the first thing you can find to eat. That may be fast food or junk food, or, if you prepare your food ahead of time, you could be reaching for healthy, tasty food that’s good for you. Your waistline will thank you, but so will your wallet, since you won’t be buying fast food as often.

You’ll eat more veggies

Part of the benefit of meal prep is the fact that you’ll eat healthier because you’ll be making a conscious effort. If you plan your meals to include healthy veggies, you’ll actually eat them. When you have your meals planned and prepped, you take the hard work out of choosing your meals every day.

You’ll eat fewer empty calories

When you have nutritious meals and snacks prepped and waiting for you, you’ll be less likely to reach for unhealthy snacks to curb your hunger. This can have a big impact on your waistline, especially if you are counting calories. Fewer junk calories in combined with healthier food choices mean you’ll feel better, have more energy, and lose more weight than if you simply try to ‘wing it’ throughout the week at meal times.

You’ll make better choices

When you impose a level of self-control (meal prepping and actually sticking to your planned menu takes a hefty dose of it), it will carry over to other aspects of your life. You’ll make better health choices when you know that you can succeed at meal prepping and planning.

You’ll have less stress (and more time)

If you’ve ever stood in front of an open refrigerator and wondered what you were going to eat, meal prepping can help. No more wasted time worrying about what to eat–just go and get your pre-planned, pre-prepped meal and enjoy the time you don’t spend slaving away in the kitchen every night.