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Sorry Dear Readers

I have been hiatus and I didn't tell you! As you all know, life happens. I have had an extra busy few months, and I am looking forward to getting back to blogging. Soon. Very soon. In the mean time to keep your eye on the prize, listen to Dishing Up Nutrition and read their articles (

Back soon!


How Nutrition Can Support Addiction Recovery

Very often, people who struggle with food cravings (and their weight) also struggle with powerful cravings for drugs and alcohol–after all, the same biochemical processes are at work in both situations. Recently, I found out that someone I care about is struggling with drug and alcohol addiction. I have great empathy for addicted people, because I know what it's like to experience overwhelming cravings for things that damage my health and well being.

Alcohol and drugs

Helpful Podcast about Addiction

So, I wanted to tell you about a great episode of Dishing Up Nutrition that helped me understand how good brain health plays a critical role in recovery:

Women, Addiction and Treatment on Dishing Up Nutrition Podcast

I hope you listen and learn about your own cravings, or pass it along to someone struggling with chemical addiction.


The power of vulnerability during weight loss

What bugs me the most about the talk around weight loss and health (in the media, etc.) is the tone of certainty. It is the Jillian Michaels and celebrity spokespeople telling the person who has been struggling with obesity for years things like, “You can do it. I know you can do it. Here's how you do it. It's all up to you.” There is no room in this world for uncertainty, and most importantly, for vulnerability.
Brene Brown

Brene Brown talks about the power of vulnerability

Dr. Brene Brown, in her popular Ted Talk The Power of Vulnerability, talks about how feeling and being vulnerable leads to great courage. And the growing number of us who have to contend with obesity need great courage. Why? Because it takes courage to take risks that lead to change and weight loss–risks like giving up certain food rituals and being OK with imperfection in our eating.
For example, I was really invested in my Friday night pizza-dinner ritual (and the cold-pizza-at-midnight ritual to follow). I was really afraid to give this up. It was comfortable and familiar, and I loved it. I felt very vulnerable at these moments when I knew that, to progress in losing weight and getting healthy, I had to make a change and say goodbye to a ritual. The vulnerability was a way for me to work up the courage it would take to make real and lasting changes. I did this over and over again as I lost the 90 pounds.
It also takes feeling vulnerable to be at the end of your rope, having tried everything under the sun to lose weight, and begin again. To realize that in order to lose weight, we have to challenge all of our assumptions about how to do it. Read the rest of this entry »

Thoughts on how to navigate Turkey Day (or Carb Fest 2012)

As we head into the Thanksgiving Holiday weekend, I am thinking about and planning for how I am going to enjoy the holiday without gorging on carbs. I just don't want to lose any more ground, as I try to maintain my weight loss (it has been a struggle the last few months). I have done well the last few major holidays, but Thanksgiving has always been a challenge for me. I just love the food combinations present: sweet jellied cranberries with savory turkey; stuffing and mashed potatoes; and you all know my weakness for pie! I also got a question from a woman in my Nutrition for Weight Loss class about how to gracefully pass on the high-carb and gluten-ey items (she is gluten and dairy free, as am I).

I double up on turkey and pass on the rolls.

So there are many pitfalls for us who are trying to eat real foods in balance, while watching the carbohydrates, to lose weight. Here are some things I do to handle the food choices gracefully:
  • Unless you have interfering aunts, or an overly-watchful mother, no one really notices what you're putting on your plate. Don't put anything on your plate to satisfy someone else (easier said than done, I know). For the interfering relatives, you can but out the old fashioned, “I'm watching my figure!” Works every time.
  • I typically double up on turkey, take a small amount of mashed potatoes, and load up on green veggies. I do have cranberries with my turkey. If I stick to this, I don't have the normal bloated, tired feeling after the meal.
  • Dessert is a mine field. I love pie, and there are usually five different kinds to choose from. I leave it to the day to decide if I will have a small piece. I gauge how I am feeling and whether or not I will feel too deprived if I pass on it. Usually, if I can get a nice cup of coffee with real whipping cream I am fine. Otherwise, I go for it. I just insist on a pie made with butter and not hydrogenated oils.

Have a favorite tip for eating during the holidays? Leave a comment.




Great website for healthy-living resources

I felt the need this week to highlight Nutritional Weight and Wellness's new website. It is such an unbelievably helpful resource if you are seeking weight loss and good health. You can access articles, podcasts, and videos on a wide range of health topics with a simple search. You get all content related to that topic in one place. I have a friend struggling with Fibromyalgia, and this will be a great resource for him.

The recipes have all been re-organized and have lovely photos with them. I have a pot of the Chicken Wild Rice Soup simmering on the stove right now! It is a complete and balanced meal that will help me lose weight.

Wild rice soup

Chicken wild rice soup made from recipe on NWW site

If you haven't already, check out this fabulous resource for health. Well done!



I just tried BarreAmped at Sparrow Studios

I am always looking for new exercise techniques and classes to maintain the my weight loss and to lose the “last 10 pounds.” While I understand that diet is about 80% of this equation, fun physical activity has its part to play. This past week, I took advantage of a free week of classes at Sparrow Studios in Eagan, Minnesota. They teach BarreAmped, as well as a variety of yoga classes, which is a results-oriented fitness regime based on modern and classical dance, Pilates, yoga and deep stretching.

The class was awesome. It focuses on small movements to get results. I left feeling taller and thinner–not BarreAmped Classbad for one hour. The teachers were great and understanding about people's differences.

The studio space is beautiful (I could look at trees during the class!). The owners, Brig and Erin, thought of everything, including cubbies in the studio so you don't need to worry about your purse or shoes being stolen while you are in class!

Most importantly, I saw women of all shapes and sizes in the class, and everyone could do all of the movements. I know when I was heavier, it was hard for me to keep up or do all of a routine. It is very confidence building to be able to do a class all the way through.

So, Minnesota ladies, I recommend you check out Sparrow Studios (remember first week is free). For the rest of you, google Barre classes and you can find one in your area. Happy exercising!