Category Archives: Health

Newton’s Laws of Motion Apply to Me

The Laws of Motion are defined as three laws of mechanics describing the motion of a body. The first law states that a body remains at rest or in uniform motion in a straight line unless acted upon by a force. The second law states that a body’s rate of change of momentum is proportional to the force causing it. The third law states that when a force acts on a body due to another body, then an equal and opposite force acts simultaneously on that body.

When I learned this in school, I applied it in scientific ways, and it also was used when our driving instructor was telling us about the horrors of car accidents. I have come to realize that these laws apply to my person.

On days that I get up and walk and go about my many activities, I get so much accomplished. Once I sit down, usually my get and go gets up and leaves. If I start out my day watching a movie or television show…then I end up watching another and another and another. To combat this, I try to make most days ones of movement early on. Not only do I get more done, but when I do take a break, I don’t feel guilty about it.

couch potato

Book Review: It Starts With Food by Dallas Hartwig and Melissa Hartwig

Last spring my blood pressure was going up, I was 85 pounds overweight and I felt miserable. I decided I needed to do something drastic, but within parameters. I have tried a hundred other diet plans over the years only to end up frustrated and back where I started. I don’t like logging every bit of food I eat. I don’t like weighing everything. And I needed a plan with no wiggle room.

If you have fought with weight loss, you know what I mean. “Cool, I get 27 points a day…I will eat as many sweets as I can fit into that and then I will fill up with no points veggies.” This does not make for a healthy eating lifestyle! I had a friend who was following the Paleo lifestyle (please – not one caveman joke…I get enough of those from my husband). She had lost a lot of weight and had posted on Facebook about all of the energy she had and how good she felt. I reached out to her and asked for a book recommendation of where to start for recipes. She told me it is really pretty easy – no dairy, legumes, grains, sugar and eat the highest quality meats, veggies, and fruits that you can. Hey, a point in it’s favor – No wiggle room! She recommended a couple of great cookbooks like Well Fed and Well Fed 2. I also picked up Paleo for Beginners, Against the all Grain, and Everyday Paleo Family Cookbook (links below). And I found the Paleo Grubs website.

I got busy reading – it is truly a simple diet. There is no measuring, no counting, no logging and no wiggle room. I have lost 27 pounds since April and that is even though I have traveled quite a bit this summer and haven’t always been able to strictly follow the plan (couldn’t turn down Aunt Brenda’s cake or Cold Stone Creamery on my birthday now could I?) Anyway, I digress. My reading led me to It Starts with Food and in a way I wish I had started here.

In this book, I found out how different foods I eat affect my body and my body chemistry. Dallas and Melissa do a great job of breaking it down very simply so even a non-scientific minded person can understand and clearly see how our food choices affect us. And they reminded me that my food choices are my choices – no one is holding a gun to my head to make a certain choice. My choices can lead to a cascade of malfunctions that then encourage me to go on making poor choices – driven by out of balance body chemistry I make more wrong choices and the cycle continues.

Melissa and Dallas are all about giving you the information and then you doing the work – but the work is easy! They provide meal ideas and they have a website that you can go to for ongoing support. The Whole30 plan is kind of a detox plan and it may end up stretching to a Whole 45 or Whole 60 plan in individual cases. Once your body chemistry is under control – then you can reintroduce some things and determine what has a bad effect on you and what does not. This helps you to make future good choices – knowledge is power!

I highly recommend this book and the cookbooks below if you want to change your life for the better and get off of the yo-yo wagon! I plan to do the Whole30 plan beginning August 31st after my dad’s 70th birthday. In the meantime I will stick to the Paleo lifestyle as closely as possible but for the Whole30, it requires 30 days of no exceptions and I can’t say no to my family’s cooking!

Good luck and let me know how it goes for you!

Another Shameless Plug and a Story of Teens Run Amok

First the shameless plug. I mentioned awhile back that Daniel and I are working on a new business venture. I am learning a lot in the process. Have you ever heard of neuropathy?
Neuropathy is simply described as nerve damage. Nerve damage can result from a lot of different things such as trauma, injury, diabetes, toxins. Diabetes is the leading cause. The nerve damage means that people either experience feelings that aren’t there (like you feel pains when nothing is wrong). You can also feel numbness – lack of feeling in your extremities. This can be particularly dangerous. You could injure your foot for example and not even know you have done it. So, if you have problems with numbness or tingling, you might want to check out the website for more information.
Now, there is a beach story that I forgot to share. Our last morning there, we got up to take an early walk on the beach. We wanted to take pictures of the sunrise and enjoy a last quiet walk in the surf. Then we planned to get all of our stuff packed into the car early to avoid the inevitable rush of people leaving and people coming in.

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What is Diabetes

I have two close relatives in my family with diabetes. As a person who has a tremendous sweet tooth and is overweight, I worry about my own likelihood of becoming diabetic. There was a lot I didn’t know about Diabetes, so I pulled up Google and did some research.  I do need to make some changes in my diet and exercise and the sooner, the better.

Diabetes in itself is difficult enough to live with, but then it affects so many other things (like your nervous system and organs), that it would be best to avoid it all together if possible.

Family Visit and Other Thoughts

We had a lovely visit with Daniel’s family this weekend. His mom and stepfather are up from Florida visiting and we had a cookout so everyone could get together and visit. Our guests included my sister-in-law and her family, our two oldest sons and their significant others, Daniel’s uncle and aunt, and our next door neighbor. Everyone began arriving around 1 and some stayed as late as 9.
We always are happy when we get to spend these times with Tess and Johnny. None of us are getting any younger and we count each time we are able to see them, a blessing. Their age makes us more aware of their mortality, but you know the same is true for anyone of us that was there. It is so important for us to appreciated the moments we have with those we love, because there are no guarantees that there will be another. Just think how different the world would be if we all thought about that when we were dealing with family, friends, neighbors, and strangers. I think the world would be a nicer place.
My husband and I are looking into other routes to income to support our family. He has been away for the last 18 months. We do see him every other weekend and we did spend a good part of the summer with him last year, but it is just not enough. We want to find someway that he can make a decent income and do it from home. So we have started creating microsites. I will be sharing links to them from time to time here. Stop by, or not, it is up to you. We are trying to choose topics where we can provide useful information to others and possibly pick up some of the advertising dollars that are floating around out there at the same time.
One of the sites we have created is What is Diabetes?. This one held a lot of appeal to me because it is something I needed to learn more about. My great-grandmother had diabetes and one of my father’s brothers has diabetes. I have the additional risk factor of being overweight and I have a sweet tooth that won’t shut up. So researching the information for the What is Diabetes website made me feel more informed and is prodding me to do something about those pesky risk factors. Stop by if you are so inclined to see why I haven’t had as much time to blog as I used to.

Hand Sanitizer Warning

I received an email today that sent me to Snopes to learn about a threat I had never even thought of. My children are older and probably wouldn’t try to see what hand sanitizer tastes like, but for a younger child who likes to explore, a lick of hand sanitizer could cause them to end up in the hospital. Take a few moments to read this article and be sure to warn friends, family, schools and churches that you are in touch with. These events happened two years ago and I had never heard of them.

Live Longer, Be Smarter, Have More Energy – Eat Omega 3

My experience with vitamins goes back over 30 years. I remember spending the night with a friend in school who had a mother who only made homemade bread (and let me tell you it was some of the best bread I have ever tasted), who didn’t let her eat doritos (WHAT???) and who gave her vitamins every day! At the age of 10, I was thinking this was pretty kooky behavior.
Fast forward about 15 years. My hubby began researching the whole vitamin scene. And he began taking vitamins. Lots of them. I chuckled. We joked about how when he died that he would be a miracle to modern scientist because he would have the best internal organs. Did I mention that my hubby rarely gets sick…hmmm….
Slowly, I have incorporated some vitamins into my diet. The obligatory calcium, flax seed oil, glucosamine (which has worked miracles on my bad knee), a daily vitamin, and Omega 3. Daniel takes way more than that and I am always amazed at the continuing evidence that shows up supporting his choices. I knew he was smart when I married him, but it gets reinforced just about every day.
Anyway…today he sent me an article about Omega 3 (which was recommended to me to take by my doctor due to high cholesterol last year). And it is a long article. Anyone who knows me knows that I run away at the sight of long articles on the computer, but I read it. Every word. And I was amazed! For some people who have made the move to free range chickens and beef, this will be further evidence that they were making the right choice. For the rest of us, it is a wake up call. We are what we eat, and even if we have been trying to eat healthy, the industrialization of agriculture is conspiring against us. So take time, read this article and then make some changes! You, your family and your descendants will be glad you did!

Increased Risk of Arthritis of the Knee

I found a very interesting article in the August 2008 issue of Good Housekeeping. I quote here:
Is your ring finger longer than your index finger? If so, you’re up to three times more likely to develop arthritis of the knee than women whose ring fingers are the same length as or shorter than their pointers. The British scientists who discovered the link speculate that it may have to do with hormones. This finger pattern is more common in women with low estrogen levels. Another clue: Men are more likely to have longer ring fingers, but for them, there’s less of an arthritis link.
And yes, my ring finger is longer than my index finger….now I know the rest of the story;)

Inflammatory Breast Cancer – Be Aware

Breast cancer is something that all women worry about. We gripe about having to have Mammograms done. We set up pals to help us remember to do self-breast exams. We check our family tree. But when most of us think about breast cancer, we think the sign to look for is a lump. Most of us aren’t aware that there is another type of breast cancer that we should be on the look out for. It is called Inflammatory Breast Cancer (or IBC).
What makes IBC so dangerous is a combination of things

  1. people, including doctors and cancer research facilities, not really having it on the top of their mind when they are asked about breast issues.
  2. IBC is often misdiagnosed when first seen as a bug bite.
  3. IBC is very, very aggressive.

I had never heard of IBC until today when a friend sent me an email with a link to a video about it.
Please take a few minutes to watch the video and here are some other links you can check out as well. Being informed is half the battle when it comes to our health. Please share this information with other women you know.
National Cancer Institute IBC Fact Page
Inflammatory Breast Cancer Research Foundation
Mayo Clinic IBC Fact Page
Inflammatory Breast Cancer Foundation