Author Archives: Kris

An After-Thanksgiving Thought

“Tell me what you eat, and I will tell you what you are.”
Anthelme Brillat-Savarin, The Physiology of Taste, 1825

(a stuffed turkey??!)

Weight Loss Advice from 1920

1920I was amazed at some of the comparisons from the weight loss advice of the 1920′s to the 2013′s. And amused at some the ‘proper’ language….guess that’s how they rolled in the 20′s.

A condensed version of the 6 tips can still hold the test of time….

Weight Loss Advice from 1920: Does It Still Hold Up Today?

 

Published in the very first issue of Reader’s Digest magazine, the article “How to Regulate Your Weight” is full of diet tips that are surprisingly forward-thinking—along with others that are woefully outdated. Here, key weight-loss lessons we can all re-learn.

By Lauren Gelman

old swimmersTip #1 – 1920: “Each of us has an ideal weight which is perfectly easy to attain and still easier to retain.”
2013 Update: The concept of a “set point” is scientifically valid….

Tip #2 – 1920: “Obesity is much more common than underweight, and much more dangerous as we march into middle age.”
2013 Update: The experts we interviewed noted that the first part is certainly still true today, but pointed out that some recent science calls into question the second half of this point.

Tip #3 – 1920: “The stout person must learn that he has both friends and enemies at the table. His enemies are sugar, bread, cereal, desserts, butter, cream, olive oil, bacon, cocoa, and rich sauces. Among his best friends are lean meats, unsweetened fruits and green foods.”
2013 Update: Weight-loss experts generally consider whole grain cereals, olive oil, and cocoa as friends, not enemies.

kitchenTip #4 – 1920: “Never let willful appetite or mistaken courtesy lead you to take a second helping of such starchy foods as rice, tapioca, macaroni, or potato.”
2013 Update: This seems to be advice about eating mindfully, which is a good idea no matter what the food choice
Tip #5 – 1920: “Limit your sugar to three teaspoons daily.”
2013 Update: This is very reasonable, but today most of the sugar we eat is already processed into our food. “With all the added sugars in foods that we consume on an everyday basis, there is no reason to be adding any extra sugar to any of your food or drinks

Tip #6 – 1920:  “When the [average city dweller] goes out for a tramp or a few sets of tennis, the unwonted activity is more likely to increase his appetite than his legitimate demand for food.”
2013 Update: Definitely still exercise, all of our experts insisted. Some people will eat more calories after exercise than they burned or they need, but that’s why you need to fuel yourself with foods that will keep you satisfied without spurring weight gain

 

 

 

Diets, Food, & Lifestyle Change

overweightThink of all the interesting food plans or diets you’ve been on in the last….let’s say, in the last year. Are you still able to maintain that food plan? If not, why?

It’s easy to jump on the bandwagon when someone else loses weight and you want to mimic their success with the food plan they were on.

Or you hear of a diet – for example, I just heard recently of the Inflammation Diet – and because you have some physical alignment, you convenience yourself that THAT diet will eliminate any physical woes you experience. So off you go to research it, convince yourself that you could tolerate the foods they’re suggesting, and then make a trip to the grocery store to stock up with the ‘right’ kinds of food.

Real change comes from within. NOT THE FOOD PLAN.

Don’t get me wrong the right diet-of-life can significantly make you feel better, and lose weight.

If your ultimate goal is a significant lifestyle change, like weight loss, think lifestyle change, not short-term diet.

Various popular diets can help to jump-start your weight loss, but permanent changes in your lifestyle and food choices are what work in the long run.

Dieting & Depriving Yourself

deprivedWouldn’t it be wonderful to ban the word “dieting” from our vocabulary.

The word alone always implies something you go off of at a certain point rather than developing a healthy lifestyle of eating throughout your life.

People always feel they have to be good during their diet, and, often part of that thinking is that you have to give up certain foods….for the rest of your life!!

Here’s the good news: making treats totally off-limits could sabotage your weight-loss goals, research from the University of Toronto suggests.

Dieting women who were deprived of chocolate for a week had more intense cravings than those without any food restrictions, and they consumed twice as much chocolate as they usually did when they were finally permitted to eat it.

The smarter strategy is to allow yourself a small portion of the treats you love. You won’t feel so deprived, or obsess about what you can’t have!

What can good carbs do for you?

 

Simply put, if you eat only good carbs you can avoid many of the health problems that plague millions of people around the world:

 

  • You will be healthier and fitter.
  • You will feel better and have significantly more energy.
  • You will lose most or all of your excess body fat.
  • Most importantly, you’ll be able to get more enjoyment out of your body and your life!

GoodCarbs.org

To Eat Carbs or Not – That is the Question!

I don’t always get it right. Especially when daughter-in-law brings over delicious Fall treats, or, your Mom makes the best apple pie on the planet. Thanks Mom!

But a recent discussion with a friend and my daughter got me thinking about how much I know – or don’t know – about ‘good’ carbs and ‘bad’ carbs.  I thought I knew what good carbs were, so I had to do a little poking around just to make sure.

So here’s to all of you who need a fresh reminder….I found this at GoodCarbs.org and thought I’d pass it along.

What are ‘good’ carbs?

example of good carbs

The simplest answer to this question is this: good carbs are unprocessed carbohydrates in their ‘all natural’ state – or very close to their natural state. In other words they have been minimally altered by man or machine, or not altered at all. Most diet and health experts agree that green vegetables are the ‘ultimate’ good carb foods. In fact, most ‘leafy’ fibrous vegetables and many fruits are considered among the best carbs to eat. Beans and legumes are also generally included on the ‘good carbs’ list, as are many raw nuts and seeds. Finally, whole-grain foods – including whole-grain breads, cereals, and pastas – are considered by most experts to be among the good carbohydrate foods (although there is some disagreement over this).

Good carbs generally have these healthy characteristics:

 

  • high in fiber: helps you stay full longer (and avoid overeating), provides sustained energy, lowers cholesterol levels, and helps to remove toxins from the body
  • low glycemic index: stabilizes blood sugar levels and insulin production
  • high in nutrients: natural vitamins, minerals, enzymes, & other phytonutrients promote health and help to prevent chronic disease
  • low ‘energy-density‘ (except nuts & seeds): helps you feel full without a lot of calories, provides sustained energy, promotes healthy weight loss and long-term weight maintenance
  • greater ‘thermic effect’: naturally stimulates metabolism and promotes fat loss

Many popular weight loss diets incorporate good carbs into their eating plans because they are so effective at lowering insulin production and stabilizing blood sugar levels. Also, because of their high fiber-content, good carbs make you feel fuller and help you to avoid overeating – a major problem for many people trying to lose weight safely!

To sum it up, the following food types are generally considered to be good carbs and should make up most or all of your carb intake:

  • whole vegetables
  • whole fruits
  • beans
  • legumes
  • nuts
  • seeds
  • whole cereal grains

Note: Some nutritionists include ‘healthy’ dairy products like low-fat milk and low-sugar yogurt on the list, but there is much disagreement over this so we’ll leave dairy foods off for now.

What are ‘bad’ carbs…

In general, bad carbs are refined, processed carbohydrate foods that have had all or most of their natural nutrients and fiber removed in order to make them taste better, easier to transport, and more ‘consumer friendly.’ Most baked goods, white breads, pastas, snack foods, candies, and non-diet soft drinks fit into this category. Bleached, enriched ‘white’ flour and white sugar – along with an array of artificial flavorings, colorings, and preservatives – are the most common ingredients used to make ‘bad carb’ foods.

One of the big reasons why bad carbs are harmful is because the human body is not able to process them very well. Our hormonal and digestive systems developed over the course of millions of years. Yet only in the past 100 years or so have humans had access to these highly-processed carbohydrates in abundance. Our bodies simply didn’t have time to adapt and evolve to handle the rapid changes in food processing and diet.

Because of this, most of the processed carbs we eat wreak havoc on our natural hormone levels. Insulin production, especially, is ‘thrown out of wack’ as the body attempts to process the huge amounts of starches and simple sugars contained in a typical ‘bad carb’-based meal. This leads to dramatic fluctuations in blood glucose levels – a big reason why you often feel lethargic after eating high-sugar, unhealthy meals.

Also, it’s important to realize that many processed carb foods provide large amounts of ‘empty’ calories – calories with little or no nutritional-value. Eat enough of these empty calories and your body will quickly turn them into extra bodyfat, as anyone with a weight problem already knows all too well!

The regular consumption of large amounts of high-sugar, low-fiber, nutritionally-poor ‘bad carbs’ eventually leads to a much higher risk of obesity, diabetes, cancer, heart disease, and other long-term problems. It’s becoming more and more clear that the abundance of processed carbs and unhealthy trans-fats found in so many foods is a major cause – if not the biggest cause – of many of our modern chronic health problems!

 

Easy Way to Earn 15% Off

Earn 15% off the October weight loss classes by:

1. “Like” Thinking Thin Lifestyle on Facebook
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Thinking-Thin-Lifestyle/140137376042368

2.  Share this offer from the Facebook page on your page

One drawing for the 15% offer will be announced the week of October 28, 2013.

(Currently there is a 10% offer off the October class if you sign-up now)

Anxious about Monday?

Oh my gosh – I thought this just happened to me. So much to do, so little time and the anxiety can kick in!  Come to find out, there’s a whole lot of people that feel the way I do about Sunday nights – even if you actual like (LOVE!) your job.  Good to know. I’m not alone.

The Sunday Night Blues Are Real — Here’s How To Beat Them

The Huffington Post  |  By Posted:   |  Updated: 10/13/2013 1:00 pm EDT

In theory, the 62 hours between 6 p.m. on Friday evening and 8 a.m. on Monday morning are a blissful reprieve from the stress of the workweek. But even if you manage to leave work at work, the reality is that Sundays are often dominated by that sinking feeling that the workweek is looming. (And now there’s not even a new episode of Breaking Bad to look forward to).

The phenomenon is a real one — 78 percent of respondents in a recent international Monster.com poll reported experiencing the so-called “Sunday Night Blues.” And a whopping 47 percent said they get it “really bad.” In the U.S., that number jumps to 59 percent.

The Sunday Night Blues are created by a combination of realizing weekend fun is coming to an end and anticipating the beginning of five days of pressure, meaning it can strike even those who like their jobs. “Work is now spread out into home life with increasing demands because of email and the ability to work remotely,” says Steven Meyers, professor of psychology at Roosevelt University in Chicago, Ill. “Work has become more of a drain for many people than it was a decade or two ago. There’s more to dread nowadays.”

But a case of the blues doesn’t have to derail your Sunday. Below are five expert-approved strategies for beating that end-of-weekend anxiety.

Relax and distract.
fall play
Sometimes the best way to solve a problem is to forget about it. “Feelings of anxiety and depression are most common when the person is not particularly busy,” Meyers says. “So enjoyable activities that redirect your attention are especially important. Spending time with others, doing things that you find fun, exercising [and] devoting time to hobbies are all good ways to keep busy so that dread doesn’t creep into your mind.”

Identify the times you tend to feel anxious as the weekend wears on (Sunday Night Blues can be a misnomer — sometimes it starts Sunday morning or afternoon), and purposely plan something to keep your mind focused on something else during those times.

Put your feelings on paper.
journal
Still can’t squelch the feeling of impending doom on Monday Morning Eve? Try writing down exactly what it is that’s bothering you. “It’s a catharsis to get it out on paper … It’s like flushing a toilet: You get it out on paper and you have flushed your system out,” says James Campbell Quick, professor of Leadership and Organizational Behavior at The University of Texas at Arlington. “Plus, when you go back and look at it you may realize that some of what you’re thinking and feeling is a little off reality.”

Listing out exactly what’s bothering allows you to “weigh the evidence and examine the facts that are underneath the feelings,” Meyers says. He recommends also writing down plans to address each of the stressful situations, because this can help “people reappraise the scope and scale of the stresses that they’re looking at over the next several days.”

Unplug.
off switch
In a world of 24/7 connectivity, there’s almost always an option to check in at work — and that means nine-to-five, five-days-a-week jobs are often a relic of the past. It can be easy to allow the stresses of workweek to seep into your precious time off and tempting to use Sunday as a chance to get a jumpstart on the week. But, as much as you can, it’s important to spend time unplugged, even if you can only manage a few hours.

Disconnecting on the weekends can allow you the time you need to recharge your batteries after a stressful week, says Joanie Ruge, senior vice president at the career site Monster.com, which conducted the Sunday Night Blues survey. It might seem counterintuitive, but taking some time off will allow you to be even more productive when you get back to the grind.

Schedule something to look forward to.
dancing with the stars
“We shouldn’t save all of our fun times for the weekend,” Meyers says. Strategically setting up little things to look forward to throughout the upcoming week, and even the following weekend, can help to soothe some of your Sunday-evening dread.

These activities don’t need to be elaborate (think: watching a TV show, making a phone date with a friend or going out to dinner). “Any of these are small enough to be feasible for workweek activities but large enough to make you feel excited or hopeful,” Meyers says. Yup, DVR-ing DWTS totally counts.

Set yourself up for success.
organized desk
Sometimes Sunday night is too late to think about the Sunday Night Blues. Next week, try setting aside some time on Friday afternoon to prepare for Monday, getting things organized so you have less to feel stressed about over the weekend. “Take some time to plan, even if that means you don’t dash for the door at 5 p.m. on a Friday,” Ruge says. “It actually will help you have a much better and more enjoyable weekend.”

10% Off – Sign Up for Fall Weight Loss Classes

10 offWe are offering 10% off the Fall Weight Loss Program classes that start on

  • Monday, October 28th 7:00 pm
  • Tuesday, October 29th 9:00 am
  • Saturday, November 9th 9:30 am

Please be aware that class sizes are limited.

Orientation meeting should be attended first to see if you are a good candidate for this 4- week program.  Free Orientation meetings are next week – hope to see you then. Call 616-608-5449 to register for the following:

Monday, October 21st, 7:00-7:45 pm
Tuesday, October 22nd, 9:00-7:45 am
Saturday, October 26th, 9:30-10:15 am

 

 

 

 

Depression & Weight Gain

Postmenopausal Depression & Weight Gain Linked to Chronic Disease

By Senior News Editor
Reviewed by John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on June 14, 2013

Postmenopausal Depression and Weight Gain Linked to Chronic Disease Researchers have made a connection between postmenopausal women who use antidepressant medication and suffer from depression,  a large waist circumference, and inflammation with an increased risk of diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

In the study, published in the American Journal of Public Health, University of Massachusetts Medical School researchers investigated whether elevated depressive symptoms and antidepressant use are associated with biomarkers for glucose dysregulation and inflammation, BMI, and waist circumference.

The three main findings indicate that both elevated depressive symptoms and antidepressant use are each significantly associated with higher BMI and waist circumference.

Elevated depressive symptoms are associated with increased levels of insulin and insulin resistance. Antidepressant use is associated with higher leves of C-reactive protein (CRP), a marker of inflammation which increases the risk of type-2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

“It may be prudent to monitor post-menopausal women who have elevated depression symptoms or are taking antidepressant medication to prevent diabetes and cardiovascular disease,” said Yunsheng Ma, PhD, MD, MPH, lead researcher.

Postmenopausal women were recruited into the study from 1993 to 1998, and data for this analysis were collected at regular intervals through 2005. Using data from 1,953 women who completed all relevant assessments, the study found that elevated depressive symptoms were discovered to be significantly associated with increased insulin levels and measures of insulin resistance.

Researchers found that throughout the entire 7.6 years, women enrolled in the study with depressive symptoms (or taking antidepressants) had a higher BMI and waist measurements than those without depressive symptoms, with the strongest association for waist circumference.

Analysis of data from 2,242 women showed that both elevated depressive symptoms and antidepressant use were associated with higher CRP levels.

“Identifying these markers in women is important for diabetes prevention because they can be monitored for possible action before progression to full-blown diabetes,” said Ma.

Few studies have examined the association of BMI, waist circumference, and biomarkers of glucose dysregulation and inflammation with depression, antidepressant medication use, or both.

The current study included a large, racially and ethnically diverse sample of post-menopausal women.

Because the analysis was epidemiological, it could not determine a causal relationship, so further study is needed to confirm the results through clinical trials.

Source: University of Massachusetts Medical School