A friend and colleague of mine forward me this video clip from The Onion, which is perhaps my favorite place for news. (For those of you who don't know The Onion writes parodies of news stories and is often quite hysterical.)
Alert: if you are bothered or offended by profanity, please don't watch this. For those of you who aren't...now I really have your attention! So take a moment and watch this clip before reading on.
Man Says 'Fuck It,' Eats Lunch At 10:58 A.M.
Don't 'Reboot with Joe' A guest post by dietetic intern Shalini.
A little while back I was told about this “life-changing” documentary that I had to watch; it was called “Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead.” It fell within my scope of interest, so I watched. The cartoon illustrations between the major segments were amusing, but overall I found the content of the documentary to be extreme: a 60-day juicing fast to lose weight? Really? Of course! It all comes back to what extreme measures we can come up with to further destroy our bodies and minds.
In the documentary, Joe wants us to ‘reboot’. He explains to us what that means:
“A Reboot is a period of time where you commit to drinking and eating only fruits and vegetables, herbal teas, and water in order to regain or sustain your vitality, lose weight and kick-start healthy habits that recharge your body and get your diet back in alignment for optimal wellness.”
Well, that sounds fantastic, right? Nope. It sounds more like a disaster waiting to happen! A 60-day all fruit and vegetable juicing diet goes against what our body needs to sustain itself. With this “diet” we are only getting simple carbohydrates, which digest quickly and do not keep us feeling full throughout the day. Staying hungry all day sounds like a pretty miserable way to spend the day. Our bodies need a mix of carbohydrates (simple and complex), protein, and fat in order to properly function. By cutting out complete food groups we are not only harming ourselves physically, but we are also training our minds to believe that we need to treat our bodies unhealthily to look healthy? Wait… That doesn’t make sense!
Even though fruits and vegetables should be a part of a healthy diet, we need more that just that. Even in the documentary, the individuals who began the “reboot” program felt miserable when starting their juicing way-of-life. By restricting ourselves, we are just setting ourselves up for future disappointment and loss of control. When we are hungry, we need to eat; when we are satisfied, we need to stop. That’s it.
If you are trying to lose weight, the best thing you can do is follow a balanced ‘diet’ (and I use the word ‘diet’ loosely), consisting of carbohydrates, protein, and fat. We should not punish ourselves by having only juiced fruits and vegetables every day, being unable to enjoy the foods we desire! Is that any way to live? (No, its not.) There are so many creative and tasty meals we can incorporate into our day that can be part of a balanced lifestyle. And guess what? It’s okay to occasionally eat foods that have zero nutritional value just because they taste good – that’s what they are there for!
By restricting yourself from the foods you love, you will only be setting yourself up for a feeling of failure and regret. Don’t do that to yourself!
Well, from a nutritional perspective you’ve heard why I don’t feel these quick fixes are a good idea… Do you have any other reasons why you think this ‘reboot’ is a terrible, awful, horrible idea?
All of us in the Boston area are still recovering from the shock of the events at the Boston Marathon yesterday. Despite the devastation I have been warmed by the generosity of the vast majority of the people in the world. The true colors of goodness, caring, and support shine through during the darkest moments.
I am in a helping profession. My colleagues are helpers. And my clients are often guilty of giving too much of themselves to others. So it is at this time that I'd like share a gentle reminder that you cannot give from an empty well. Take good care of yourself. Did you know that during times of high stress and anxiety our hunger cues become hard to hear? You may need to eat a little more mechanically during this time. You may need a little more fuel, a little more water, a little more rest, a little more quiet time.
So as you attend to the needs of others, as so many of you do, don't forget about taking good care of yourself. Below are some resources that may be helpful to you.
Coping with Disaster
Managing traumatic stress: Tips for recovering from disaster and other traumatic events
Taking Care of Your Emotional Health After a Disaster
Distress Helpline (24/7 phone and text)
Building Your Resilience
My friend, colleague, and vegetarian food blogger Janel Ovrut Funk has an AWESOME idea to share for breakfast. She knows how much I value healthy fats in the diet and deplore the fat-free craze of the 90's that seems to be hanging around in our cultural consciousness. So thank you Janel for this post for today! To read more of Janel's fabulous blog, check her out here. In fact, I should also note that this original post is located here.
Lately the majority of my breakfasts have been this cranberry-oat amazingness that I whip up once a week in my slow cooker, or this new high fiber, high protein cereal from Attune. But every so often I crave something savory and have been getting my fill of healthy fats from avocados. I originally didn’t think this “recipe” was worthy of posting, but whenever I put a picture of it up on my Instagram feed, my followers are intrigued, and many have told me they were inspired to make it too. Always looking to inspire others to eat well and get creative with food, I decided to share here as well.
1 ripe avocado
Frank’s hot sauce (essential!)
Whole wheat bread
Fork-mash avocado into a small bowl. Mix in a tablespoon or two of fresh or bottled lemon juice. Add in a pinch of sea salt to taste.
Spread on your favorite whole wheat toast, bagel, bread, pita, or whatever vehicle you want to get the avocado mash into your mouth.
Drizzle with Frank’s hot sauce. It must be Frank’s! I bought Frank’s for the first time this year and GAME CHANGER. I really do put that $*^# on everything. No other hot sauce compares. And for all you spice-phobes, it’s not terribly spicy if you buy the Buffalo wing variety.
The most recent time I had this, I spread my avocado mash on homemade whole wheat bread. I unearthed a package of Bob’s Red Mill 100% Whole Wheat Bread Mix from the back of my kitchen cabinet, dumped all the contents into my bread machine, crossed my fingers, and turned it on. A few hours later I had a perfect loaf of whole wheat bread. I’m always shocked when I successfully make a loaf! Thick and crusty, it made the perfect hearty base for this breakfast. Occasionally I’ll pair this with a hardboiled egg for protein and a juicy Clementine for a touch of sweet. Typically if I don’t have this for breakfast, I’ll enjoy it later in the day for lunch.
By Elizabeth Jarrard- Registered Dietitian at Marci RD Nutriton
Do you surround yourself with inspiration? Are reminders of your goals staring you in the face when you wake up, when you head out the door? What would happen if they were that close? What would happen if you were constantly reminded of where you want to go in this life, and how you're going to get there? I wouldn't think of traveling to somewhere unknown without a map (or my gps) in tow. So what if we map out what our dreams look like so that we end up at our destination-not lost forever.
Vision boards can be a great tool for getting back in touch with what our goals are and where we are headed. The act of creating them should be meditative, soothing and almost therapeautic, as you find images and words that resonate you with. Then when you have finalized it (for the time being), you can hang it as a constant reminder of where you are and where you would like to go. And of course because we are fluid, and our goals and dreams are ever changing it's important to create new vision boards to serve those changed desires.
Making a vision board is easy.
1. Gather a large piece of construction or any other "heavy" paper
2. Find a bunch of magazines (from a variety of genres. Beauty, travel, food, you name it!
3. In a peaceful place scour the magazines for words and images that resonate with you and cut them out
4. Arrange the images and phrases on the paper and use good ol' glue or modpodge to adhere them
5. Hang in a prominent place to be forever reminded of where you are heading
I surround my desk with vision boards of past and present
Have you ever made a vision board? How has it helped you? Care to share?
March is National Nutrition Month! And this year The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is celebrating with the theme "Eat Right, Your Way, Every Day." I actually love the theme this year because it embodies my belief that what is "right" in terms of nutrition is individual. And the key to good nutrition is honoring your own internally guided cues of what's "right" for you.
So in honor of National Nutrition Month, I'd like to share with you a video of my niece. Not only will this video bring a smile to your face but it will remind you of the amazing ability to intuitive eat that we were all born with.
Below are some of my favorite resources to help you "Eat Right, Your Way, Every Day."
I know we just wrapped up Valentine’s Day. But the holiday really does get me thinking about love. And this year I thought a lot about loving ourselves. I know that sound cheezy but please keep reading. I actually think learning excellent self-love takes a lot of work. And I also think it can be quite confusing because really loving ourselves sometimes means doing things that might not feel great in the moment. Sometimes, love just doesn’t feel like it!
I think children are the best example of what I hope to describe. Think about the kind of melting down and tantrum throwing that happens when they are over-tired. Clearly, what they need most in that moment is sleep. But when Mom or Dad initiate the bed time ritual, most kids don’t acquiesce by saying “you’re right, I’m throwing these crazy tantrums because I’m over tired, it’s probably for the best that I head to bed now.” No! They kick and scream in the hopes of staying up later.
As adults, we often revert back to our child-like selves. We say yes to things we really ought to be saying no to. And say no when what we truly mean is yes! Here are some examples that might sound familiar:
- I’m not hungry but I need a break from this project. Time for a cookie!
- I’m starving but according to my diet I don’t have any more points left so I guess I won’t eat.
- I’m exhausted and sleep-deprived but don’t have time for more sleep, I’ll just have an extra snack to boost my energy levels.
- My neighbor asked me for help on this fundraiser and I agreed even though I’m already feeling overwhelmed with my PTA commitment.
- I really love going out for a walk and getting some fresh air but find myself distracted on Facebook every evening instead.
But as adults, part of REALLY taking care of ourselves is refining our ability to find “true refuge.” I believe that requires learning to say yes or no when we need to most…and then sitting with the discomfort that might follow. If you’re not used to identifying and meeting your true needs this may feel tough and uncomfortable at first. But I promise that it starts to feel really empowering! Not only do you feel better because your actual needs are getting met but you also don’t have to deal with the residual feelings of guilt, shame, and disappointment that comes up when you hide in your “false refuge.”
Have you had an experience about self-love you’d like to share? I’d love to hear it!
This past weekend, we had a major storm out here in New England. In fact, I’ve never seen so much snow at once! As I was watching Facebook, my inbox, and news reports I was intrigued with everyone’s efforts to prepare for the upcoming deluge. In fact, I found it incredibly interesting. Many people headed to the grocery store and stock piled their cupboards, fridges, and freezers (along with grabbing cash and filling up their gas tanks).
I think this behavior has such relevance to the world of nutrition. When we fear impending famine, we stock pile “just in case.” How many of you repeat this pattern with your diets? If you have ever participated in a “diet” than you have repeated it even if you don’t know it! Creating a famine by cutting out certain foods or food groups actually triggers a natural and healthy survival mechanism to feast. This survival mechanism causes us to think obsessively and crave those forbidden items. And as many of you know from experience, when we are both psychologically and physically restricted we don’t just crave moderate amounts of those items, we yearn for COPIOUS amounts of them. And before you know it, a terrible pattern has emerged… Famine (even with the best of intentions) has set you up for feasting.
When: April 27th, 2013, 9:00 am – 5:00 pm
Where: Charles Hotel, 1 Bennett Street Cambridge, MA 02138
Investment: RDs $125, Interns & Students $105
Participation Limited to 20
* Become familiar with the basic psychology of eating disorders and common co-morbidities.
* Learn basic counseling & psychology terms to increase confidence when working with clients & colleagues.
* Integrate basic tenants of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT), and motivational interviewing (MI) into nutrition counseling sessions.
* Develop an appropriate nutrition assessment and prescription for the eating disorder patient- including anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, binge eating disorder, and eating disorder not otherwise specified.
* Utilize mindfulness exercises to teach difficult concepts such as hunger, fullness, and satiety.
*Get an introduction to principles of Intuitive Eating and how to integrate it into eating disorder work.
*Leave with a tool box of educational and experiential interventions and handouts for working with this population.
I will be using a wide variety of methods for this one-day workshop. This will include lecture, video, case studies, small group work, and mindfulness exercises.
For questions or to register, please email me: email@example.com.
I intentionally held off on writing a "New Year's Blog Post" this year. I think everyone gets inundated with them and I wasn't so sure that I had anything that I really wanted to contribute. But now that it's the end of the month I feel like it's an opportunity for a little quiet reflection.
I believe in living a life based on specific values that are important to me. In fact, there is a "newish" type of therapy called "ACT" which stands for Acceptance and Commitment Therapy. "ACT aims to help the individual clarify their personal values and to take action on them, bringing more vitality and meaning to their life in the process, increasing their psychological flexibility."
This speaks to the work I try so hard to do with my clients. In fact ACT nicely parallels the messaging of intuitive eating. I believe that when we listen and make changes based on our own internal compass (which takes a lot of honest listening!) we are much happier and the changes we make are more sustainable. When our actions align with our belief system (rather than someone else's) this decreases stress and actually becomes empowering.
So I would like to challenge each of you to take this opportunity to learn something about yourself. It will only take a few minutes.
1. Take out a scratch sheet of paper.
2. Make a list of 10 things you value. If you need some inspiration, there is a list of over 400 values listed here.
3. If you made specific goals this year, compare those goals to your values. Do they align?
4. Compare your daily actions with your values. Do they align?
Sometimes we have to make dramatic changes in our lives when we become more clear about our values. But if I could give each of you a gift, it would be the gift of living in alignment with your core values. Just as the definition of ACT states, it brings more vitality and meaning to our lives. And when it comes to health, isn't that what we're all after?
I'd love to hear about your core values and what you are doing to better align your life with those values. Anyone brave enough to share? It is anonymous! :)