Your health is a social responsibility

This blog is about social responsibility and I post a lot about health.

Maybe you think I’ve slipped off track, but I want to set the record straight.

I recently started following Blindfold on Facebook. I do not, (repeat) do not endorse all of their messages or sources, but the following three (specific) concepts really appealed to me.

photograph of a dinner table place setting: knife, fork, plate and one large half-yellow, half-white medicinal capsule in the middle of the plate. a quote frames the picture: "People are fed by the Food Industry which pays no attention to health, and are treated by the Health Industry, which pays no attention to food." said Wendell Berry

(photo compliments of facebook.com/b1indfold)

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A few things I’m doing right now to lose weight and tighten up

In no particular order, I’ve incorporated these rules into my life recently and I’m progress in my weight loss and health goals.

I’ve lost three pounds in ten days (and I haven’t even been exercising, but that’s about to change).

half of a tomato slice face matched with half of a bicycle tire to create a circle

(photo compliments of SuperTracker.usda.gov)

1. Consume nothing but plain ol’ tap water after 8 o’clock. Breakfast is around 10 in the morning. If you’re only eating 10 hours a day, it’s easier to trim calories. Besides, I’m not hungry when I’m asleep.

2. Use USDA.gov’s SuperTracker to create goals and track my calorie intake. Reduce calorie intake to 1600 or fewer daily.

3. Drink 10-14 glasses of water daily. This helps me stay full, energized, and saves me from feeling hungry when I’m actually just thirsty. Also, I want my skin to glow and stay hydrated as I make these changes and lose weight, too. Chant with me: No more stretch-marks. No more stretch-marks. Twelve more

Detox diet advice

cruciferous vegetables including Arugula, watercress, cabbage, Napa cabbage, daikon, wasabi, turnip, rutabaga, broccoli rabe, bok choy, cauliflower, broccoli, kohlrabi, Brussels sprouts, collard greens, kale

(photo compliments of healthyurbankitchen.com/blog)

I’ve been striving to eat clean(er).

I’ve read about The Master Cleanse or lemonade detoxification diet, and it was recently recommended to me, too. I follow a blog that raves about it, mythineats (great blog, by the way), so if it’s for you, power to you.

It seems too simple, though. And potentially unhealthy. So I kept reading and consulted my Dad, a hobby ‘hoping-to-turn-semi-pro’ nutritionist.

His bottom line: you don’t need to throw your body into shock and deprive it of key nutrients to detoxify. Garlic will wipe the metals out of your system, eating clean detoxifies and regulates your body naturally, and anyone will get the awesome results of this Master Cleanse if they quit eating garbage and had two bowel movements (sorry, had to say it) every day for 10 days.

I don’t want the easy way out. I want to learn positive habits that keep me free of toxins.

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See your nutritional health in a daily bar graph with SuperTracker

ChooseMyPlate.gov's SuperTracker Website allows users to input their food and activity information to create nutritional and exercise goals. it provides users with a comprehensive report on their nutrition and links to information regarding the individual's daily habits

The SuperTracker at ChooseMyPlate provides comprehensive reports on a user’s nutritional needs and successes.

No, calorie counting is not my thing.

I just posted about it. But while researching for that post, I found the SuperTracker at ChooseMyPlate.gov and the curiosity was too much.

All of a sudden I have a profile and I’m entering my breakfast information.

But it’s amazing! And soooooooo much more than a calorie counter.

I set any 5 goals from 5 categories: weight managment, physical activity, calories, food groups and nutrients. Daily, I get to watch a graph display my progress on each goal, and when I succeed at one, I get an email.

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My rules for eating healthy and managing my weight

new US food pyramid, featuring vertical categories of the whole grains, fruits, vegetables, dairy, and lean proteins with a stick figure person climbing the pyramid to represent exercise. next to it is the old food pyramid.

(photo compliments of choosemyplate.gov)

I’ve never read a diet book. These fancy-schmancy planned-out diets are not my thing.

I have created some rules over the past few years that keep me eating healthy, and keep me in the healthy weight category.

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  • Quit drinking soda. Drink water (eight 8 ounce glasses daily). With a glass of 100% fruit juice watered down and/or a glass of low-fat milk daily.
  • Eat 3-5 fruits and vegetables per day. That’s 6 to 10 all-in-all.
  • Get quality protein with every meal. The top ones are: chicken, turkey, eggs, tuna fish, shrimp, low/non-fat cottage cheese, low/non-fat greek yogurt, and whey protein powders.
  • Include fiber-rich foods as often as possible. I love popping corn on the stove plain and adding my own low-calorie flavors. Delicious!
  • White foods are evil. Enriched, bleached foods need to be replaced with WHOLE wheats; read the ingredients to make sure you’re not being conned by misleading labels. Read 6 more…

Nineteen tips for how to save money by cooking up these simple, natural, healthy, quick recipes for the family

round loaf of fresh bread on a wooden cutting board, a bread knife laying to the left

(photo compliments of artisanbreadinfive.com)

Alright, while reading 573 Ways to Save Money by Peter Sander and Jennifer Sander, I found a few super simple recipes I really liked. They use a few real ingredients, and are cheaper than their pre-made or packaged counterparts at the supermarket with mystery chemicals and preservatives. Save money, cook with healthier ingredients and get creative in the kitchen? This is great.

  1. Make your own smoothies. Get out of the habit of expensive fruit juice smoothies and get into the habit of making them yourself at home. Bananas, berries, ice, yogurt, juice, and a blender are all you need. Visit www.smoothieweb.com for a great selection of smoothie recipes.
  2. Stuff baked potatoes. An inexpensive and filling way to feed a family is with stuffed baked potatoes. Bake them, scoop out the insides, and mash with a bit of milk, butter, and sour cream, then add in chopped and spiced meat or cheese or vegetables.
  3. Simple pasta is the best. This inexpensive pasta meal is perfect–plain pasta, olive oil, garlic, and Parmesan cheese. Add salad or a loaf of bread you’ve made yourself, and you have a budget gourmet meal. Continue reading

Doughnuts will kill you

(photo courtesy of StepByStep.com)

Over dramatic? Yes.

How about, “Doughnuts will kill your diet.” Better?

In the words of Baz Luhrmann, “The long term benefits of sunscreen have been proved by scientists whereas the rest of my advice has no basis more reliable than my own meandering experience…”

After weeks of a successfully balanced and healthy diet, there were a few mornings I used my one-a-day dessert token in the form of a giant, fresh-baked, vanilla-iced, gorgeous, fluffy doughnut.

Every morning that I ate my whole wheat toast, two scrambled eggs, and 8oz cranberry juice, I had a successful day of healthy eating without struggle.

Every single morning that I had a doughnut, I fought (kicking and screaming) to escape cravings for junk for the rest of the day. Most times, I caved and lost.

So tell me what that means?

A healthy breakfast sets a day’s diet pace. Think about it.

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