5 Ways To Get Ready for a New Year

Let’s face it- so many people plan on working on new goals once January 1 comes around, and many of those goals  revolve around losing weight and getting healthier.   Everyone spends time figuring out a “diet plan” when they also need to learn about how to go about eating properly!

  1. Drink plenty of water
    If you stay hydrated you will be less likely to confuse thirst with hunger and reach for a snacks instead of a glass of water.  It is important to be drinking anywhere from 2-3 liters off water a day!  Just remember that eggnog does not count, you may feel that you are getting enough liquid but it is extremely important to be getting just water!  So remember to throw in a glass of water between those holiday cocktails!
  2. Knowing when to eat and not to eat
    Do you know when you’re hungry?  Many people don’t, and it can take a long time- 6-8 hours for our body to tell us we need to eat!  There are lots of times we THINK we are hungry, however- when we smell good smells,  see something yummy, or even being asked if we want something to eat!  Its hard to learn to recognize when you are truly hungry, but  its important to know if it’s real hunger or just a craving.  Also,  when you ARE ready to eat eat slowly and wait a bit before grabbing seconds. It can take your body up to 20 minutes to realize that we are full!  
  3. Don’t skip meals
    Holiday DAYS seem to run  together- and it’s easy to skip a meal here and there (Especially after sleeping late after a late night!) The trick is NOT to skip meals then  play catch up later with  a huge meal- you need to eat small amounts all day.  With the stress of the holidays and  not getting enough calories, your  body can enter starvation mode, holding on to what it does have (calories)  for when it needs it!  When you do eat, your body will hold onto as many calories as it can for when it needs it next.   Plan for small meals- an apple and some peanut butter, some cheese and crackers,  nuts and fruit, instead of a full sit down meal once a day!
  4. Use the right Supplements
    Even when you try to eat right, you can miss some important nutrients!   I love to have a smoothie in the morning with fruits, Whey Advantage protein powder, and  almond milk.  Since I have  autoimmune disease (Diabetes and Lymes Disease) I also  use a Joint Supplement for my tendons and ligaments. and I always use a complete multivitamin.   Also be sure to research and use a trusted brand of supplements. They are not all created equal!
  5. Get enough sleep
    The Holiday season takes a lot out of us, and we don’t realize it!  One of the first things to go is sleep, and yet, it’s on of the most important.  Once we get run down, it’s hard to regroup and  we the worse we fill, we can turn to  sugar and carbs to keep us going.  Fill up  on the right things– including SLEEP!

Following these tips, a healthy meal plan (no  fad diets!) and  a sensible exercise plan is what you need to get started! Its nice to make goals and plans, but its also nice to love and take care of yourself while doing it!

4 Things to Know About Bullying

There has been more bullying in the news recently.  Bullying hasn’t gone away, it has just been buried under other news.  I recently read of a 10 year old girl, Ashawnty Davis, who hanged herself because she had been bullied!  10 YEARS OLD.  This beautiful girl was bullied until she thought there was no way out but to die.  We must get a handle on bullying. 

I just read these words from Pastor Elijah Hollis   who is working to make  his city, Philadelphia a better place.  I love hat he took on bullying and  wants to help.  Here is what he had to say, and my take on it.

If you are bullied, than you are not alone! There are millions of individuals being bullied everyday! We can’t stop bullying from happening but we can learn how to handle it when it happens.

  1. It’s not me, it’s you. One thing to keep in mind is that bullying almost never has anything to do with you but actually has everything to do with the pain that the person bullying is feeling on the inside. Remember that hurt people hurt people, so when someone is hurting someone, it usually means that that person has been hurt by someone or something in their life and they feel like the solution is taking it out on someone else. We know this doesn’t help take away the pain, but understanding this truth can help us realize that its almost never about us but actually the person doing to bullying. I think that bullying comes from a place of power, as well.  When someone  is scared of losing something they will do anything to keep it, even being mean and bullying someone else.  You can’t stop the person’s pain, but you can try and get yourself out of the situation. .
  2. Boldness speaks the loudest. Now you have to know that boldness doesn’t mean that you have no fear, but it does mean that you do the hard thing in the middle of having fear. Sometimes a simple statement like “Stop, NOW!” can make the difference. Other times letting the bully know that you are not afraid of getting an adult involved can be helpful as well. Remember that bullying usually keeps up when it is not addressed, and ignoring bullying is the worst thing you could do. Violence is never the answer but standing up IS! So stand up and be heard! I want to agree with him on this, but sometimes,  even when you do speak up, no action is taken.  If you tell an adult and they  say there is nothing they can do, tell another adult.  I know it sucks.  I told  my teachers I was being bullied, and they said if they didn’t see it, there was nothing they could do about it.  I wish I had told my Mom, then she would have told  the Principal or even gone to the Resource Officer or School Board.  You have a right to be safe from bullying! Keep talking until someone does something!
  3. Teamwork makes the dream work. Getting a team around you that knows whats going on can be one of the most powerful ways to stop bullying! We were meant to do life together so get a few trusted friends and adults who can help you stand up against bullying! Getting adults involved is a quick way to bring resolution to the situation. Having a game plan for when the bullying takes place can help you take care of the situation quickly. Also staying with your crew can help protect against bullying all together. THIS!   I used to be very confident until I was bullied to the point of my own suicide attempt. I am still sometimes nervous to walk into a crowd of kids my age that I do not know.  When I go places that I know I am going to be anxious, I bring friends so that  I feel more comfortable. 
  4. Forgiveness stops YOU from becoming a bully. Don’t let what the bully did to you become a hurt that makes you into the person you dislike. If we don’t learn how to forgive one another when we get hurt, we ourselves will be in the same emotional prison that our bully is in. Believe it or not, that hurt will grow into bitterness and that bitterness into action. So take care of your heart as top priority and learn how to forgive those that hurt you! This is the thing that I feel is most important. I have forgiven the who bullied me.  Many of them have come up to me and apologized.I have even become sort of a mentor for the girl who was the catalyst for it all.  It was my way of taking control and regaining power over my life.  Don’t be mistaken, forgiveness doesn’t mean that you forget, but  you d release the power it had over you. 

Bullying is something that is real and happens every day, and even though you can’t stop it from happening, you can learn how to deal with it so that it doesn’t affect you. You are only affected by the things you allow to affect you.



Easy Ways To Eat Humanely

Lots of my friends are vegetarian an even vegan,  and I even though I eat meat, I care, like they do about animals being treated humanely.  Our family works hard to make smart choices and buy food that is humanely raised. Living in  the country surrounded by local small farms makes it easier for me, but you don’t have to live rural to eat humanely. You do, however, need to know how to figure out what IS humanely raised! It’s not as easy as you’d think!
I was glad to see that the ASPCA isn’t just about dogs and cats. They hey also focus on farm animal welfare, working to improve conditions on factory farms and create a more sustainable and healthy food system.
They have all kinds of resources to help you on their website to choose humanely raised foods, like:
I want to be sure that the food that I eat is raised in a way that I can support. I’m glad that there are resources that I can use to help us while shopping to make kind choices.  Do you know where you food comes from and how it was raised?    Have you ever explore your food origins?  Let me know in the comments!