1 Pound a Week.

Weight loss is one of those things that seems so difficult. The media is constantly advertising the latest and greatest miracle diets that will help you lose pounds in no time.  I am not an advocate of fad diets..... because really what it comes down to is the science behind the numbers.  And really it is a very simple equation. 

 Formula to Lose 1 Pound a week 
Calories In = Calories Out
3,500 Calories = 1 Pound

*To lose 1 pound a week, you must have a negative balance of 500 calories each day for 7 days.

Do this by either:
-Exercising off 500 additional calories
-Eating 500 less calories
-Or combining less food consumed with more exercise
100 extra calories a day = 10 pounds extra weight gain a year
Pounds add up faster than you think!
Healthy Eating + Working Out = Healthy Weight LossYour browser may not support display of this image.


Daily Calorie Recommendations for WEIGHT LOSS

I had a good friend a few weeks ago email me because she is trying to get healthy and lose weight.  She had been tracking her calories and entering them into an online calorie counter program (Spark People , Calorie Counter, The Daily Plate)
but because there are so many recommendations out there she wasn't sure how many calories she should be getting and what % of those calories should be coming from Carbs, Protein, and Fat sources.  

So here are my very general guidelines that would work as a weight loss diet plan for most individuals.  

First keep track of everything you eat and WRITE IT DOWN.... at least in the beginning until you get in the habit of eating healthy foods. Measuring foods is the best way to get the most accurate results. Read labels. 

As far as overall calories for maximum weight loss, I would stick to around 1200-1400 calories daily. You never want to to eat less than that....... cause you need that amount to get all the nutrients, vitamins, and minerals that your body needs daily. 

Here is a break down of % of Carbs, Protein, and Fat that will add up to the 1200 calories a day. 

Carbs: 50% of your calories--- which equals 600 calories; or 150 grams of Carbs.
Really focus on complex Carbs like whole grains, fruits, vegetables etc. Stay away from simple sugars as much as possible (white breads, pastas, rices, processed foods, candies, cookies, etc).

Protein: 20-25% of your calories--- equally 240-300 calories; or 60-75 grams of Proteins. Protein is crucial if you are working out but focus on lean proteins like chicken, fish, lean turkey, egg whites, and beans.  

Fat: 25-30% of your calories--- so 300-360 calories; or 34-40 grams of fats daily.
Focus on Good fats (Mono and Polyunsaturated fats) versus the Bad fats (saturated fats).  Your good fats come from plant sources like nuts, avocados, fishes, oils.  Sat. fats are any fats that come from an animal (like meats, eggs, butter, milk).

Also remember that you need to treat yourself once in awhile... if you want a treat than incorporate it in your daily calorie plan.  Don't deprive yourself completely from what you love or you will go so crazy and one day you will get so fed up with not eating anything that you enjoy that you will splurge and eat a whole bag of cookies, candies (or whatever it is that is your weakness).

Remember these are very basic guidelines and may not be suitable for everyone. 


too Much Halloween Candy.

I thought this idea from One Charming Blog was a great idea for getting rid of all the extra Halloween and Trick or Treat Candy.  

It's called the Great Pumpkin.
On Halloween night, after trick-or-treating, let your kids eat as much candy as they want. They then put their uneaten candy back into their trick-or-treat bag and put it on the kitchen table. They don't have to do this--it's purely voluntary. But they know that if they leave their candy out, if they can part with the mini sized candy bars and endless rolls of smarties, there will be a cool present waiting for them when they wake up. The Great Pumpkin then comes sometime during the night and takes all of the candy out to the car to be taken to work the next day. Much like Santa, he then leaves a gift for each child.

Although I am pretty sure I would have been one of the kids that didn't leave my Bag full of candy out for the Great Pumpkin (I loved loved Halloween Candy as a kid), I still think that this is a great idea to try!  

Other tips on how to get rid of extra halloween candy.
1. Many dentists will buy back the candy.
2. Donate it to a food bank.
3. Store it away in your Food Storage!  -Can it or Freeze it.  Many candies will stay good for a very long tim if properly stored. (then there will be no need to buy more come Valentines, Easter etc)
4. Keep the Candy for gingerbread houses in December.

5. Take it to the office!  
6. There are a ton of recipes that you can make with the extra candy. 
7. Toss it. It's better to feel guilty about a pound of candy in the garbage than a pound of candy on your thighs. 


the true cost of Obesity!

Americans are getting bigger and bigger and bigger every year.  Obesity is def. on the rise... and doesn't seem to be slowing down anytime soon.  So here are some interesting facts on the obesity epidemic.

1. Here are the most recent %'s of obese adults (BMI >30) for each state.   Pretty alarming that pretty much every state, with the exception of Colorado has a rate of greater than >20% obese.  This isn't even just overweight percentages but obese.  Click here to see how the numbers have increased over the last 23 years or so. It is very interesting. 

2. When talking just overweight (BMI 25-29.9) nearly 32.7% of Americans are overweight. When combined with the more than 34% of Americans that are Obese, 66.7% of adult Americans are either overweight or obese.  These numbers posted by the National Center for Health Statistics.  That is a lot of fat people walking around. 

So what is the true cost of obesity... not only for the obese but for everyone.  I found this article; Ambulances start charging extra for the obese.  
In summary, it costs about 2&1/2 times as much as a normal weight person. It takes more time to move an obese person, requires more man power, plus more expensive equipment is required.  I know from my experience of working in a hospital.... and seeing the patients that are there most often, a huge portion of them are obese.  They seem to have multiple problems.  So really in the end, being obese ends up costing more money for the hospitals.... which in turn makes health care costs increase, which then increases the cost for us all.  

Let's battle this together and not be part of the statistic. I know I want to be part of the 33% that is in the normal weight category. 


Mexican Food Makeover.

I would have to admit that Mexican food is probably one of my favorite types of cuisine. I love a tortillas, beans, rice, cheese, salsa, meats ….. but many of the mentioned foods are packed with fat and calories…. So to continue to feed my Mexican cravings, I have had to come up with ways that I can still enjoy my favorite food, but how to cut out some of the un-needed extra calories when dining out! 

  1. Always order creams, dressings, sauces etc on the side. That way you have control of how much sour cream, quacamole, creamy dressings that you are consuming.
  2. Go heavy with the salsa and the pico instead!  It is usually packed with flavor, high in vitamins, and has lycopene. It has hardly any fat and is very low in calories…. So load up.
  3. Always go for the soft shell vs. the hard shell. The hard shell has in some way been fried. 
  4. Go for the beans. If possible skip the high calorie meats and focus on the beans(especially black, pinto, navy, kidney). They are packed with fiber and protein, are low in fat, and have been linked in helping lower cholesterol.  So eat up.
  5. What the portion.  Most restaurants will give you 2-3- or even 4x the recommended portion size.  Even before eating, ask for a to-go box and put half of your meal away. That way you won't be tempted.  If you order small.... you will be small..... small portions = a small you! 
  6. Skip the tortilla chips.... or at least don't ask for a refill when the first basket is gone.  Many eat more than their needed calories for the meal just from their chips. 


tomorrow NEVER comes

If there is one thing I hear over and over again from clients, friends, families, and even myself…. Is “I will start my diet, exercise program(or anything else) TOMORROW.  The fact is that Tomorrow will never come, it is always today.

With this same mentality those starting a diet tomorrow often have the ‘last supper’ mentality. They often say, “I am starting a diet tomorrow so I better eat all the snacks and goodies today because tomorrow I am stuck with eating celery and grapefruit.”  So one ‘last supper’ turns into two, three, four, and even five last suppers over a few months.  If you don’t start NOW, chances are you won’t start.  Instead start incorporating healthy eating and intuitive eating principles into your life TODAY… don’t put it off til TOMORROW… because tomorrow may never come.


Waffle Makeover...

I love Waffles… I would say a good ~75% of the time I go out for breakfast I end up getting a waffle…. Sometimes they are lathered with creams, butters, sauces, and other high calorie toppings. The waffle to the left is a little extreme .... But there are ways to still enjoy your waffle and keep the flavor without all the empty and sugar loaded calories.
---Instead of whip cream opt for flavored nonfat yogurt…. (even my husband is converted to using nonfat strawberry yogurt.)
---Add fresh fruits like strawberries, blueberries, kiwis, and raspberries, or if you don’t have any fresh fruit try canned fruits like peaches, pineapple – just make sure they are canned in light syrup, not heavy.
---Applesauce, cinnamon, and a dash of powdered sugar are also great additions to any waffle.
---Peanut Butter and low fat cream cheese are both healthy options if you don’t add more than a Tablespoon. (remember they are high in calories so watch your portion.)   
---If you are going to stick with the traditional syrups be sure to choose the sugar free or at least lite versions. Sugar free maple syrup has only 35 calories versus regular maple syrup that has 210 calories per ¼ cup. 
---Whole wheat versions are packed with fiber and are just as tasty.. so don’t be afraid to try them. Remember fibrous foods help you still fuller longer... so you wont be wanting a snack a hour later. 
---Also when dining out always ask for the syrups and butter on the side.  That way you have control of how much you want added to your plate.
---I can’t forget nuts. Although nuts are very high in calories, they are loaded with your good fats… so sprinkle a few on your waffles for added crunch. Just don’t add too many or they may aide in packing on unwanted pounds. 

So get yourself  a waffle and let me know how you chose to healthy it up.     


Make things fun!

I loved this.

What a perfect reminder for us that if we make things fun we are more likely to do them!  Lets not make exercise a chore.. instead something you look forward to.

- ADD MUSIC. That's what many people enjoy most about aerobic dancing or spinning classes. Moving to your favorite sound is much more inspiring than silence. Almost any sport can be done to music.
- ADD PEOPLE. Find an exercise partner or a class, go to a gym, or join a club. You are much more likely to continue your program if it's a sociable time and other people count on your participation.
- GO PLACES. Exercise indoors when you must, but on beautiful days, take your exercise outside and enjoy the scenery at the same time. Use your activity as an excuse to explore your area's parks, monuments, historic spots and natural beauty. Go on a weekend tour or vacation with others in your sport. Or just breathe the fresh air in your back yard.
- BECOME AN EXPERT. Whatever activity you pick, you will enjoy it more if you learn all about it -- the latest fashions and equipment, who's who among the professional and amateur stars and so forth. Search the web for interesting sites; join a discussion forum.
REWARD YOURSELF. Set a goal.... and when you reach it treat yourself (dont make food the reward) Instead maybe a massage, a manicure or pedicure, a new shirt, new shoes.....



GUM: Chewing your way to Weight Loss

Wrigley and the Biggest Loser believe that Chewing Gum is more than just a breath freshener…. and I agree!
I don’t know about all the scientific reasons listed in the article…. but for me I find that if my mouth is busy doing something then it isn’t going to be shoveling unhealthy and extra amounts of food into it. I find it most helpful when I am cooking. I am super guilty of being a ‘taste everything as you go along’ baker and cooker. Often times when I am done cooking a meal I am no longer hungry because I have snacked on so much of the meal while I was preparing it. So I find it super beneficial to grab a stick of gum while I am cooking.. that way I am not tempted to stick other food in. (I also have heard that taping your mouth shut during cooking has the same affect.. .haha).

So next time you catch yourself mindless eating.......or reaching out to grab for those cookies, grab a stick of gum and let your mouth lead you to weight loss.


Ditching the Diets.

During my undergrad at Utah State University one of my awesome Professors was a firm believer of the 'Intuitive Eating' concept of Evelyn Tribole. We were assigned to read the book by the same title, and it made total sense to me. I never liked the concept of the crazy yo-yo diets…. So since reading the book I have tried to follow its concepts. It hasn’t always been easy but I have found that when I honor my hunger truthfully I make wise choices and am able to stay healthy and within in my goal weight…

Here are the 10 main principles of the concept taken from the Intuitive Eating website.

1. Reject the Diet Mentality: Throw out the diet books and magazine articles that offer you false hope of losing weight quickly, easily, and permanently.
2. Honor Your Hunger: Keep your body biologically fed with adequate energy and carbohydrates. Otherwise you can trigger a primal drive to overeat.
3. Make Peace with Food: Call a truce, stop the food fight! Give yourself unconditional permission to eat.
4. Challenge the Food Police: .Scream a loud "NO" to thoughts in your head that declare you're "good" for eating under 1000 calories or "bad" because you ate a piece of chocolate cake
5. Respect Your Fullness: Listen for the body signals that tell you that you are no longer hungry.
6. Discover the Satisfaction Factor: When you eat what you really want, in an environment that is inviting and conducive, the pleasure you derive will be a powerful force in helping you feel satisfied and content.
7. Honor Your Feelings Without Using Food: Find ways to comfort, nurture, distract, and resolve your issues without using food.
8. Respect Your Body: Accept your genetic blueprint.
9. Exercise--Feel the Difference: Forget militant exercise. Just get active and feel the difference. Shift your focus to how it feels to move your body, rather than the calorie burning effect of exercise.
10. Honor Your Health:--Gentle Nutrition Make food choices that honor your health and tastebuds while making you feel well. Remember that you don't have to eat a perfect diet to be healthy.

Love the Body you are in…. then do something to make it better!

As women we like to nit-pick everything about our body. Too tall, too short, too big of booty, too fat, hair too straight, etc…. I could go on and on. But I want this post to be about celebrating your UNIQUENESS and loving YOU-even with your less than perfect attributes.