Archive for the ‘Health’ Category

20 Secrets to Happiness or something like that   2 comments

Life can throw you a one- two punch out of the blue.  Last year and early this year was one of those times for me.  Instead of a one- two punch, I got the three-four-five-six punches….. they just kept coming.  How do you get through tough times that keep on coming??  Here’s my current list.  I’m sure it will change over time but so far here’s how I keep smiling:

  1. Staying connected to my Creator–church, prayer, reading the bible, prayer,  did I mention prayer?
  2. Meditation–I’m new at it but it keeps me grounded
  3. Aromatherapy–Joy™ is one of my favorites, it smells great and reminds me to be joyful, it’s my Joy in a bottle
  4. Gratitude Journal–some days the best I could say is “thank you for the sun shining”.  It works, now there’s more to be grateful for
  5. Compliment others
  6. Smile and say hello, in the words of Joel Osteen–“being unhappy won’t change anything for the better”
  7. Random acts of kindness– increases serotonin, get creative, the world needs more kindness
  8. Appreciate moments of silence– Take the oppt to pray or listen to God’s voice, He speaks very quietly
  9. Exercise–burn off the frustration
  10. Go to bed early– it gets the day over
  11. Talk it out– a friend, a therapist, the car, walls, just get it out!!
  12. Reading–words are powerful & meaningful>>affirmations, inspirational quotes, books, other blogs, right now on hooked on Chosen Families
  13. Music– love it>>Classical in the am(makes me smarter), dance music for exercising, gospel for inspiration, relaxing music at night before bed, jazz, country, Christian, reggae, & classical,  somewhere in between.  That’s  a lot of music.  Thank you Pandora.
  14. Work–I happen to have a really great job
  15. Food–Eating healthy–if you want your body to function well you have to fuel it with good, healthy foods.  I feel the difference. Everyday and I mean everyday I need my Luna bars and a handful of nuts.  Don’t feel right without them.  A piece of dark chocolate is also very good
  16. Drink–no not alcohol, TEA.  Hooked on them, now having several cups a day, just discovered the Teavana tea shop  
  17. Get out in nature–I love walks in the woods, staring at a lake or feeling an ocean breeze.  God is there, I can sense His presence
  18. Hobbies-As I tell my kids ” I do actually have a life”.  There’s things I like to do 
  19. Dr. Weil’s Mood Support Formula— very helpful during the wintertime
  20. Stay hopeful for the future–It’s going to get better.  In the words of Louise Hay  “we are never stuck”

What are your keys to happiness?

I’m training for a 5K   4 comments

I know you must be asking yourself “she’s training for a 5K”? Did she mean marathon or even a half-marathon. No I mean a 5K. I’m almost 50 years old and I haven’t run a 5K since I was in my 20s and back then I was slow. But it’s on my list of things to get back into doing. It’s a twofer, get in shape and support a great cause.  It’s Jeremy’s Run to benefit Drugfree. org and the Kolmac Foundation.

The run will be on Memorial Day in Olney, MD,  so I have 3 months to get in shape enough to run ~3.1 miles.   I exercise pretty regularly but running is quite different from walking and gliding on an elliptical.  For me running takes not just physical energy but mental energy. Every step says “stop”.  This time I plan a different physical and mental strategy.  I”ll start out running a 1/2 mile then 1 mile, 1 1/2 miles then 2 miles until I reach 3 miles.  Mentally instead of whining and crying I’ll encourage myself and challenge myself to go further and tell myself  that I feel fine.  My mindset is so different now than it was 20+ years ago.  I criticize myself less and encourage myself more.  

I could walk it but I want to run it, that’s what everybody else is going to do and I want to run while I still can.  My knees still work great and my back feels ok.   I might be slow but as long as I finish  I’ll be happy.

YOU GO GIRL…….

8x1s6i7k.jpg_197x158

Posted March 2, 2011 by SunflowerHW in Health, Wellness

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I'm training for a 5K   4 comments

I know you must be asking yourself “she’s training for a 5K”? Did she mean marathon or even a half-marathon. No I mean a 5K. I’m almost 50 years old and I haven’t run a 5K since I was in my 20s and back then I was slow. But it’s on my list of things to get back into doing. It’s a twofer, get in shape and support a great cause.  It’s Jeremy’s Run to benefit Drugfree. org and the Kolmac Foundation.

The run will be on Memorial Day in Olney, MD,  so I have 3 months to get in shape enough to run ~3.1 miles.   I exercise pretty regularly but running is quite different from walking and gliding on an elliptical.  For me running takes not just physical energy but mental energy. Every step says “stop”.  This time I plan a different physical and mental strategy.  I”ll start out running a 1/2 mile then 1 mile, 1 1/2 miles then 2 miles until I reach 3 miles.  Mentally instead of whining and crying I’ll encourage myself and challenge myself to go further and tell myself  that I feel fine.  My mindset is so different now than it was 20+ years ago.  I criticize myself less and encourage myself more.  

I could walk it but I want to run it, that’s what everybody else is going to do and I want to run while I still can.  My knees still work great and my back feels ok.   I might be slow but as long as I finish  I’ll be happy.

YOU GO GIRL…….

8x1s6i7k.jpg_197x158

Posted March 2, 2011 by SunflowerHW in Health, Wellness

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Boosting Your Metabolism   1 comment

Increase Your Metabolism

 The best resource I have found for information on boosting your metabolism comes from the book

Flip the Switch by Robert K. Cooper. Below is a summary:

 Click on book for more info

 

1.    Eat the proper foods –high fiber, whole grains, lean meats, low sugar,  low salt, low fat

2.     Eating frequently , 3 meals, esp. breakfast,  2 snacks

3.     Slow down your eating, digestion begins in the mouth 

  •  Put your fork down after each bite
  •  Take at least 20 minutes to eat
  •  Seek healthy foods that stimulate your sight, smell and taste

 4.     Add hot spices to your diet like cayenne pepper, jalepeno, scotch bonnet peppers

 5.     Add vinegar to your diet, apple cider vinegar is great

 6.     Sip cool or ice water

 7.     Expose yourself to the sun as early in the day as possible

 8.      Sleep well

  •  Cool room
  •  Establish a routine
  •  Don’t go to bed hungry – protein snack –turkey, low carb yogurt, cottage cheese
  •  15-20 min stretching & flexibility
  •   Human Growth Hormone is secreted 1hr after falling asleep
  •   Critical healing period is between 12MN-3am

 9.     Green Tea—increases metabolism by 35%

  •  Drink one cup before each meal

 10.  Breathe deeply—increases oxygen

11.    Protein shakes—protein increases glucagon, will burn 40% more than with carbs alone

           *Try Balance Complete

12.   Eat protein at every meal.

13.    Eat starches early in the day—Insulin has a circadian rhythm, peaks early in the day

14.     Fish oil—improves efficiency of Leptin

15.    Do not skip meals – increases Ghrelin, a hormone  which creates a voracious appetite

16.    Pay attention to when your body needs a break during the day i.e. get up and move around or stretch

17.   Have your biggest meal at lunchtime

18.   Have an early dinner around 5:30pm or 6pm.  The later the dinner the less caloric intake you should have.

19.  Limit each meal to no more than 600  calories.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     

 20.   Get moving 

          *Exercise builds muscle and muscle burns fat

  •  20 min aerobic activity 3-4X week
  •  Muscle tone-ups anytime throughout the day
  •  Core strength training for Abs & legs twice a week,
  •  Upper body strength twice a week
  •  Balance & Flexibility twice a week 

       21. Physical activity 30 min after eating while digestion is still taking place  will burn Carbs that otherwise will be stored.

  • Take the stairs, park farther away, stretch or walk during lunch
  • Pushups within an hour of getting up or go up and and down stairs or deep knee bends. Best if done before breakfast. 
  • Fat will be used as fuel vs. Glucagon which is stored in the liver. 

 22. Manage Stress – stress depletes your reserve of Dopamine and Serotonin

23. Proper vitamin and mineral intake

24. Drink plenty of water

 

 Burn It Up

Posted February 24, 2011 by SunflowerHW in Weight Loss

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How to Sleep   Leave a comment

Sleep is better than gold!!  It can’t be bought, stored up or borrowed.  It’s precious. 

Humans have a natural circadian rhythm.  We were made to sleep at night and be awake during the day.   One of the roles of the hormone cortisol is to wake us up. It peaks about an hour before sunrise and falls in the evening when the sun goes down.

 How can you improve your sleep and wake up feeling refreshed?

  • go to bed as early as you can and wake up as early as you can, keep in rhythm with daylight and nightfall
  • get sunlight into your eyes as soon as possible, step outside for a few minutes before you leave the house, open all the curtains, blinds or shades, turn on the lights in your house
  • do the reverse at night, keep lights low and noise low
  • make your bedroom as dark as possible, comfortable room temperature
  • stop eating at least 2-3 hours before bedtime
  • stay hydrated during the day, 
  • practice living in the here and now, leave work problems at work, they don’t pay you when you get home so don’t give them  any more of your time
  • 30 minutes before bed, have a routine, listen to relaxing music, take a warm bath, read, write a letter,  but no tv or internet
  • try aromatherapy oils  like Lavender, Peace & Calming® or Valerian

When needed take a natural supplement like Melatonin (short term), Valerian Root with passion flower,  Sleepesssence™ or herbal teas,  Kava Stress from Yogi™ or  SleepyTime from Celestial Seasonings®.

The National Sleep Foundation has more great  tips for getting a good night’s sleep. And Lights Out is one of the most informative books on sleep and how it relates to health conditions like diabetes, obesity and high blood pressure.

 

                                   

  Sleep in peace

Posted February 17, 2011 by SunflowerHW in Healing, Health, Natural, Wellness, Women

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Diet Sodas Leads to Heart Disease?   2 comments

A new study suggests that diet sodas lead to heart disease and vascular events.  Could it be the sodium content? Most diet sodas contain 35mg of sodium in 8 oz, so in a 12 oz can of soda that’s 52.5 mg.  Diet soda drinkers drink about 5 0r 6 cans a day.  That would add up to ~300 mg sodium daily.  A healthy amount is 3,000mg total.  So the sodium amount is not that high, but definitely something to watch.  Also the caramel color of some diet drinks may lead to vascular events like a stroke. Overall diet drinks are a poor choice for hydration.  Most people drink them for the taste and caffeine pick-me-up.   The artificial sweeteners in diet sodas can actually have an opposite effect of weight loss by increasing sugar cravings.

I have always been a proponent of water and herbal teas, which are a great way to hydrate the body naturally. Some even contain  a small amount of caffeine.  Quench your thirst with wonderful herbal teas like chai, green tea, and chamomile.  Give the body what it really thirst for.  Don’t sabotage your weight loss efforts by drinking beverages that will make you crave more sugar.  Add a small amount of natural sweeteners to herbal teas like stevia, agave, or honey.

Posted February 10, 2011 by SunflowerHW in Health, Women

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Hello world!   Leave a comment

Welcome to sunflowerhw.wordpress.com.   Curious about the most current health and wellness topics?  If yes, then this is the blog for you.  Health and wellness is my passion.  I love writing and reading about ways to improve health and well being.  Join me as I comment and blog about current topics and topics of interest especially for women.

Posted February 10, 2011 by SunflowerHW in Health, Women

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