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Add a Splash of Red!

Everyone knows that February is known for the month of love, but for some it can be a month of feeling blue!

The lack of light and long winter days can make it harder to maintain a consistent mood and energy.

I want to remain optimistic, joyful, and upbeat.  Adding a splash of red might just do the trick.

Red symbolizes love, desire, passion, excitement, but it also symbolizes energy, determination, courage, and boldness. Red is empowering, it’s an attention getter.  It’s fiery!  It is often where the eye looks first. It is the symbol of life.

So, if you’re feeling a little low and need a pick me up, go ahead, spice up your life with a little red!  When you do you may feel:

Rejuvenated!

Energized!

Determined!

Paint your nails red, add vibrant red lipstick to your lips. Accent your outfit with a red tie, scarf, gloves or hat.  Pull out some red pumps, or runners.  Some red jewellery or a red purse.  Leave the black dress in the closet, and inspire yourself with a new red one! The world of red is your oyster, think of some other fun items you can add to your wardrobe.

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February Pamper yourself5 February Pamper yourself6 February Pamper yourself7

Shake off the blues, share the love, and inspire yourself to be the best you can be.  Live well, eat well and love yourself and others!   Cheers to the color Red! ❤

http://changingminds.org/disciplines/communication/color_effect.htm

https://precisionintermedia.com/color

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Get shapely with your food!

Why not kick your food up a notch and add some shape to it!

Since we’re celebrating “love” for the month of February grab your cookie cutters and start cutting your food into fun shapes. I will be focusing on heart shapes as, it represents love and life.   If you have kids or grand children I am sure they would love to help you out.  Enjoy it and have some fun!

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valentines inspiration2           valentine inspiration6

Think Red!

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February is the month of Love!  The flavor of the month is chocolate.  The color of the month is Red, and the shape of the month is a heart!

With that in mind I want to turn it into a month of positive healthy experiences.

The first thing on the list is Love.  Oftentimes when we are trying to lose weight or eat healthy we can be very critical with ourselves.  The weight isn’t coming off quickly enough! The bulges are everywhere! My upper thighs look like cottage cheese!  I’ve got too many wrinkles!  My skin is sagging!  I am ugly!  I don’t like what I see in the mirror. etc. etc.  It’s a great month to put the negative self-talk away and replace it with positive affirmations.  It’s time to pamper yourself and have some “me” timeLove the skin you’re in and appreciate all that you are.  It’s time to give yourself a big hug, and a pat on the back. It’s time to praise yourself for staying on track, for choosing healthy foods, for making positive changes in your life.  Be your own cheerleader and love yourself.

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The second thing on the list is chocolate.  The smell of chocolate is in the air.  Replace milk chocolate for dark chocolate.  It is a good option to turn to when you get a craving to have some. It is low in sugar and high in cocoa. Dark chocolate is good for dry skin and erases small wrinkles and fine lines.  It shields against harmful UV rays and adds shine to your hair.  The other option is carob. The polyphenols in it are powerful antioxidants and it lowers cholesterol. It is a natural raw food that is used as a substitute for chocolate in baking and in chocolate beverages.

The third thing is Red.  We have a myriad of fruits and vegetables that are Red.  For the month of February “THINK RED” .  Eat red grapes, apples, pomegranates, red grapefruit, red berries (strawberry, raspberry, cranberry, cherries) red cabbage, radishes, beetroot, red onions, red kidney beans, tomatoes, etc.  These are all healthy and are full of antioxidants.

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The fourth thing is the shape of a heart. Love your heart! Concentrate on foods that “heart-healthy”.  Whole grains, (oatmeal) beans, legumes, fatty fish (salmon, tuna), flaxseeds, nuts and teas (flavonoids).

There are lots of ways to stay motivated this month, these are just a few ways that will keep me on track. Live simply, love yourself, love others.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/06/dark-chocolate-beauty-benefits_n_3710027.html

http://www.livestrong.com/article/250365-what-are-the-benefits-of-carob/

http://www.webmd.com/food-recipes/features/25-top-heart-healthy-foods

How much food should I really be eating?

When it comes to portion size, I find it difficult to know how much food I am actually consuming or serving up at home.

Restaurants tend to serve oversized portions of food so I usually divide my plate in half and only eat one portion of it.  However, if I can visualize portion sizes it is easier to control my food intake.

Here is an easy way to eyeball your food with everyday items:

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Baseball = Medium piece of fruit; 1 cup of salad greens

Tennis ball = 1 cup (250ml) of rice, pasta or ice cream

Golf ball = 2 tbsp.(30ml) of peanut butter, jam or salad dressing

Dice ~ 1 Dice = 1 tsp. (5ml) of butter

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Computer Mouse = 1 baked potato

3 Dice = 1oz (30g) of cheese

CD = the diameter of a pancake

Dental Floss Container = 1oz (30g) of chocolate

Large Egg = ¼ cup of raisins, dried fruit

Checkbook = 3oz of baked/grilled fish

Light bulb = 1 slice of pie

Another way to visualize the food portions is to use your hand:  here is a neat diagram to show you the proper portion size.

food portion with hand

A picture says a thousand words!

Jamie Oliver And Victoria Government Announce Partnership To Tackle Obesityfresh-fruits-vegetables-2419

Two pictures side by side show a drastic contrast to food.  One picture shows food that is “alive” living, fresh food that will nourish and feed our bodies.  The other picture shows food that is “dead” over processed, filled with saturated fat and stripped of many nutrients.  Each day we choose what foods we put into our bodies.  Today we can choose wisely.

I’m midway through the cleanse this week, and it has been incredibly revitalizing.   My energy levels have increased and my I am getting a good nights sleep each night.  These pictures keep me motivated, and remind me why I am choosing to live a healthier lifestyle.

Hope it encourages you all today, as you continue to strive to be a healthier you!

Pedal exercisers, fun for all ages!

Pedal exercisers, are fun for all ages.  If you’ve been stuck behind a desk all day, or have kids who play video games a lot, pedal exercisers are a great investment.  These little portable exercisers fit under your desk at work or home so you can pedal at your leisure.

I first discovered them when my Mum was having difficulty with exercising, due to severe arthritis and fibromyalgia pain.  It was and is affecting her daily life.  While walking and light weight lifting is the best option for her, there are days when she’s suffering so much she can’t move well.

Knowing the value of exercise, and how weak her muscles would become if she didn’t move I decided to do some research on exercise equipment.   I wanted something that would give her a low impact workout and still keep muscles toned, circulation moving, and heart exercised.  The solution was the pedal exerciser.

The beautiful thing about this is she can pedal in the comfort of her own home, while sitting in her chair. She can pedal while talking on the phone, watching tv, reading a book or doing some knitting.  When she is done using them she can tuck it away under her chair.

The pedals can also be used for upper arm workouts.  She places them on top of her table and is able to tone her arms.

My kids were fighting over them every time we went to her house, so I decided to purchase a pair for our home. (and we already have two exercise bikes),  However, when my kids are playing video games or watching television or just chatting with me in the family room, they grab them and pedal away.

This has been a good investment for my mum to help her to keep moving, and it’s been a good addition to our home.  There are a few different kinds available, but if you have no room for a exercise bike or want to have one at work under your desk these a good option and are reasonably priced.

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It’s such a simple item, but has a big impact on overall health.

Simplicity = Ridding Clutter & Starting Fresh!

Happy New Year to you all!  2015 has arrived!

Yesterday I found myself at a Downton Abbey “themed” brunch to celebrate the New Year with friends.  We had to dress in period clothes and the food was prepared from a Downton Abbey cookbook.  It was simple and scrumptious; parmentier potatoes, upper class fruit salad, bread pudding, toast and marmalade jam and other wonderful delicacies.  It was a great way to enjoy the first day of 2015.

Today, I am thinking about simpler times; a time when food was, untouched, fresh from the fields.  There were no chemicals or preservatives to alter and destroy God’s bounty.  It was a time when animals were able to roam around, in pastures, and eat grass to fuel them.

Getting back to the basics is a good way to start 2015.  Eating simpler, by choosing fruits and vegetables and whole grain, whole wheat breads is a beginning.  Cutting back on portions of red meat and opting for healthier leaner meats is a wise choice.

I will be spending the next few days de-cluttering my house from top to bottom and that includes ridding it of unhealthy foods.  Hosting Christmas and New Year’s Eve gave me opportunity to sneak in items that I wouldn’t normally buy, but catering to a variety of tastes I felt it necessary to do so.

Over the weekend I will up my intake of water to help flush the system and detox it.  I will also be heading to the grocery store and sticking to the outer perimeter where most of the healthy food is located.

Pushing forward, so that my hair, nails, eyes, and skin will glow brighter once again.

I will be reporting back Monday, to update you all.  Thanks for your support and encouragement.

~”Those who have no time for healthy eating will sooner or later have to find time for illness.”~

(Edward Stanley)