Angela

“One bead at a time”

I frequently ponder inequality in the world.  It bothers me that I’m not working harder to change it.   Somebody’s baby’s going hungry while we are still eating out.  I understand consequence for negative choices but I can’t rationalize being born into despair.  Recently, a patient of mine traveled to Haiti on a mission trip.  She shared some interesting stories…

“The Haitian village that we worked in was a very close-knit community.  Women are the primary caretakers of the children and most of what they know is passed down from the older women of the village.  Unfortunately, this includes a ton of what we would call “old wives’ tales”.  Because of the lack of financial resources, women must breastfeed.  They simply cannot afford to buy formula.  However, young mothers will often be influenced by older women that their milk is “bad”.  They believe if a mother cries a lot (due to postpartum depression) while she is nursing her baby, that the tears will create a vacuum that literally sucks her milk up into her head where her brain will then poison the milk when it travels back to her breasts.  Young mothers, not wanting to poison their babies with breast milk, will sometimes feed them a watered-down inadequate supply of formula leading to malnutrition.  Or they will try to feed them baby food instead of milk when they are much too young to digest it well which leads to diarrhea

The Haitians are in dire need of basic nutrition and health classes.  But I think it will take patience and consistent teaching over years — maybe decades — before it overcomes the old wives’ tales and superstitions they have been taught.”—–Denise

This year at Christmas, our office decided to forgo the annual secret Santa gift exchange and donate to Gleaner’s Food bank.   I was then stricken with the decision of what to give the office staff that would follow this “give back” theme.  I found a great local chapter of Amani Organization that solved my dilemma.

The Amani Children’s Foundation partners with New Life Home Trust to care for abandoned and HIV+ infants and nurses them back to health.  Since 1993, New Life Homes has rescued over 1200 infants.  OurIndianapolischapter sells beads and Kenyan market items to raise money to support these foundations.  The beads are made by Kenyan women at the Kazuri Bead Factory.  These beads are then brought to theUSand crafted into jewelry, key chains and novelty items.  100% of the proceeds go back to these hard-working Kenyan women to nourish and clothe their families.  Thanks Indy Amani for opening the local chapter in 2009.  More importantly, thank you for easing my mind when buying a gift for someone that isn’t starving.  At least it gives me a morsel of integrity.  This is my baby step to alter inequality, contributing to help feed infants hatched into desperation.

What a difference it makes!
Visit Amani’s site today and online ordering is now available!
 
Posted on by Angela in Benevolence, Call to action, Charity, Crafts, disease, Family, Mind, Spirit 1 Comment

The Addiction Cycle

A few posts ago-we shared Jim Ryser’s success story of overcoming addiction and empowering himself to teach and counsel others.  If you missed that post you can see it HERE.  The cycle is so true.  I don’t think I can honestly think of anyone that doesn’t have addiction to overcome.  Negative thinking, food, chemicals, exercise, self-abuse are only a few that we encounter daily.  Dee has been struggling with her issues with sugar and she writes—

 

Cycle-of-Addiction1

Dee writes:

I’ve been contemplating addiction the past few days, considering the cycle of the way that people deal with emotional discomfort by masking pain through the consumption of _________ (fill in the blank). I have filled my blank in with food. Last night I became so angry at a situation in my home that it took everything in me to not eat or drink. Food (and chemicals) distract us. Even if these crutches of ours are not mind altering, they are always mood altering.

It is easy for me to look at that circle of addiction with alcohol or drugs because I am thankfully not addicted to those things. I see that people feel pain, use things to not feel pain temporarily, physical effects wear off, pain comes back, need for another drink/dose. The routine never stops until the issue is worked through and dealt with in a more healthy and productive manner.

But then I look at my addiction, which is food, and because this is closer to home, it’s hard to see as clearly how to break the chain. One technique that I think works for many people is to write down their emotions and food-related impulses. This one for me last night was clear as could be. I was about to go to sleep and didn’t feel the least bit hungry. After the chaos subsided a bit, I walked into the kitchen for the sole purpose of finding the worst possible food choice on hand to consume quickly and mindlessly. Thankfully, I realized the irrelevance of how eating would make me happy and I turned myself around. What did make me happy, this morning, was seeing an overall seven pound weight loss on the scale for the month of August.

This long-term reward will ultimately be more gratifying that a bag of Doritos would have been last night.

For more pearls from Dee visit her site HERE

Posted on by Angela in Guest Blog, Mind, Uncategorized Leave a comment

Roller Coasters are Fun but YoYo Diets are Not

Thanks to Dee for sharing a very important point—

Diet should not be a hobby.

 

So many times we go head on into a diet to lose weight based on willpower and determination.  We do well for a while and since we’ve  chosen a habit that isn’t sustainable, we fall back off the wagon only to gain the weight back.  It is so much better to focus on changing one small habit at a time.  Pick one little thing to change at a time.  Start by drinking more water, eliminating soda, or adding breakfast into your routine.  Those aren’t overwhelming and are certainly sustainable changes once they are accomplished.  Then after it becomes a regular habit, it’s time to pick the next small step.  Soon enough, the well deserved side effect of effective weight loss ensues.

 

Dee shares:

Vintage YoYo's

Vintage YoYo’s

 

Roller coasters are fun!

Metaphorically speaking that is. I am not an amusement park roller coaster fan at all. I’m a chicken. There is nothing about a churned stomach and reckless body motion that is at all amusing to me. Control issues perhaps.

But a diet roller coaster is really not bad — provided that you end up on the ground with the ride is over. Some people diet by weighing themselves every day. I do, because it’s kind of fun to see how scientific the numbers can be. For example, I have been steadily losing a bit of weight all week. Yesterday, after getting to my 1200 calorie limit and not eating more until bed time, I blew it and ate a piece of pepperoni pizza at 11:00 pm. It was homemade and I served it to the kids for dinner without even trying it. But as I was cleaning the kitchen before going to sleep the pizza jumped off the counter and into my mouth. There was nothing I could do. It wasn’t my fault.

Sure enough, I woke up knowing that this morning’s scale would not show a smaller number but a larger number. The number went from 181.5 yesterday to 182.5 today. Bummer! But, overall, my weight has gone from 187.5 last Thursday to 182.5 today. You can’t let a single scale reading count for much. It’s the big picture that counts. AND, don’t let great results let you think you can slack either. That’s the mistake I made at the end of February when I had lost 20 pounds in two months. I thought I could relax on the diet for a while. That “while” ended up being five months and the return of ten of the pounds I lost.  Having chosen a habit that isn’t sustainable, we fall back off the wagon only to gain the weight back.

For more of Dee’s journey visit her  SITE

 

 

 

Posted on by Angela in Diet, Guest Blog, Nutrition, Uncategorized Leave a comment

Ten Steps to Better Health

Dee’s Update:

There are thousands of diets, with a thousand different strategies for how to reach the goal of optimum weight and physical health via exercise and nutrition. Because people are different with so many variables on how much physical activity they get in a day, age, bone structure, height, blood type, chemistry, there could not possibly be one solution that fits every person.

It is important, instead, to look at the most successful weight loss programs to see what they have in common. After that, each person can start with these tried and true fundamentals and modify them to keep whatever works and change the parts that don’t. Throughout the past few months I have volunteered myself to be a human experiment and I’ve assembled the top ten things that I’ve found to have worked when implemented. Start with one or two things on the list. After three or four days, add another. The scientific statement about “it takes 21 days to form a new habit” is actually an unfounded fallacy. New habits really take quite a bit longer to become ingrained to where they are second nature. The good news is that it takes one day to make up your mind to change your routine to incorporate good choices. For example, let’s say you usually drink a glass of orange juice every morning while you’re getting ready for work/school. If you decide today to substitute your OJ for water and an apple, you have just changed your habit. It will take a while for that change to feel like an automatic tendency, but when your refrigerator is full of whole fruit instead of bottled juice you will have some reinforcement to rely upon.
In no particular order, here are my top ten recommendations:
  1. Eat veggies at every meal
  2. Drink three 16 ounce glasses of water before each meal
  3. Don’t skip breakfast
  4. Don’t eat too few calories
  5. Eliminate sugars and starches
  6. Plan, plan, plan – think ahead
  7. Learn to be OK with hunger
  8. Eat to live instead of living to eat
  9. Find someone to partner with
  10. Cut out fried everything (see below)
OK, about number 10. This may be the hardest one to implement. Fried food simply tastes great. Growing up in the 70s with a Southern Baptist family, my mother fried everything from pork chops to potatoes to green beans. We used to cook with lard and bacon grease so it’s in my genes. As impossible as it sounds, cutting out foods can be done. Don’t tell yourself you can never eat it again; just know that eating fried food (and any fast food) has to be the exception not the rule. Fried food is not only unhealthy because of the amount of fat and calories, but usually the food itself (potatoes, hamburger, dough) is low on a nutrition scale. Equally important is the reduction of processed foods. Health benefits are found abundantly in whole foods, produce and grains in their most natural form.

 

For more on Dee’s journey to better health–visit http://www.gettingthebestoffood.com

Posted on by Angela in Body, Diet, Nutrition, Uncategorized, Weight Loss, Whole Food Leave a comment

Water Enhancers

I’ve had several patients lately inquiring about some of the newest water enhancers and asking if they are safe.  This prompted me to look into them (although I suspected them evil when I heard the word –Enhance.)  Here is the research I have done—

water_glass

Food companies have recently developed brand new “water enhancers” and are cashing in the big bucks.  Here’s a shock!-Water enhancers contain NO Natural ingredients.

They do contain:

1.  Artificial Sweeteners- like the dreaded sucralose (AKA Splenda) and we all know how terrible those are for us.  Animal studies show that sucralose decreases the amount of good bacteria in the stomach by close to 50%.  EEK  We need those good bacteria to process the nutrient out of our foods and get them to the cells of our bodies.  If  you are new to the blog–I will refer you back to This Link

2.  Food Dyes-  need I really say more after you have read Susan’s story?  Here is the link

3.  Ace-K- Acesulfame Potassium is the only sweetener on the Earth that is worse that Aspartame (aka-formaldahyde in your brain.)  It is made from methylene chloride which is a well-known carcinogen.  Really?

4.  Proplylene Glycol-  This is a mineral oils that has been known to cause allergic reactions and central nervous system depression–do you really want to drink this all day?

 

This leads me to my main point.  Let’s flavor our water naturally.  My family doesn’t enjoy the taste of water so much.  We initially threw in some lemons and have now graduated to adding cucumber slices and some fresh mint from the garden.  One of my friends has recently written a book on vitality and has been selling water bottles with infusers to naturally enhance the water.  I love mine!  I have been adding fruit, berries, and herbs and have been drinking my target amount daily.

To calculate your target amount—take your body weight (lbs) divided by 2 and that equals the number of ounces of water you need daily just to stay hydrated—that is the minimum amount of water you should drink daily.

The staff and I all purchased the Bring Back Vitality  water infuser bottles and have more available if anyone would like to purchase one.  Shoot us an email at doc@angelamd.com or call (317) 217-2626.  The bottles are $15.00 and well worth it!

Bring Back Vitality Infuser Bottles

Bring Back Vitality Infuser Bottles

Here is a great recipe for some detox water you can make and drink all day!

Please visit http://www.bringbackvitality.com for more great information and to order the bottles online!

Posted on by Angela in Nutrition, Weight Loss 2 Comments

Dee’s Race! On Your Mark!

I’m sharing Dee’s latest post.  She is building a tribe to help with accountability which is so great!.  Look forward to more posts coming once school starts.  I have great posts coming on water enhancers, sustainable farming, and autoimmune disease.

On Your Mark, Get Set

See, even in a race you get to mentally prepare for the sound of the starting gun. As much as I love food, and I mean really love food, I can’t believe how exciting it is to think about not eating food tomorrow. Of course I’ll eat, but smart choices make me feel so much better.I’ve recruited some friends to join the challenge to lose 10 pounds in August. Even though we all know a lot about what to do to be healthy and fit, there is an extra difficulty in trying to achieve this goal alone. Accountability to one another will be the key to success this month. Just get your head in the game and realize that you have a bunch of other folks going through the same exact steps. Most importantly, make sure you realize that this is ultimately about a lot more than extra weight. Getting to a healthy weight is REALLY about better health. So many illnesses can be stopped, stalled and even reversed through diet alone. Hippocrates:  “Let food be thy medicine…”The first few days are the hardest because your body will go through some change. Don’t let your brain trick you into thinking that you’ll die of starvation if you don’t eat more at night. You won’t. Get to your magic number of calories needed and then stop eating. Period.You will wake up feeling better and by the third day you will notice your tastes changing, leaning toward healthier food.

Visit Dee’s site at http://www.gettingthebestoffood.com

Posted on by Angela in Body, Exercise, Nutrition, Weight Loss Leave a comment

Cancer Prevention with Dr. Chris

Thanks to Dr. Nagy for this great share!!!

For more info from Dr. Nagy—visit his site at http://www.yourpersonalwellnesscenter.com

Posted on by Angela in Body, cancer, disease, Nutrition, Whole Food Leave a comment

Retrain Your Brain

Thanks Dee!!!

 retrain

 

Retrain Your Brain

 
 
When I chose the title for my first blog, “Getting the Best of Food”, I envisioned a mental warfare. In a struggle, the person who overcomes their enemy is said to have “gotten the best of them.” Of course the double meaning is also to get the best qualities food has to offer.
 
 
Back to warfare. I work five days a week from morning until 5:00 pm. My breakfast, lunch and daytime snacks are perfectly healthy and I stick to the plan but dinner and post-dinner decisions often take a turn for the worse and I think I know why.
 
At the end of the workday, we’re run down, worn out and hungry. One of my strategies is always to have healthy food on hand and to eat something before you are famished. But there is also a little bit of brainwashing necessary to keep yourself from caving into cravings for junk food and comfort classics.
 
Here’s a normal weeknight example (after I’ve eaten fruits and veggies all day): 5:05 pm driving home, thinking about dinner options and my brain starts to recite all of the foods that make me joyful – chicken wings, pizza, potato skins, tacos… As I continue to drive home, the list is on a mental merry-go-round and it just keeps repeating incessantly in my head.
 
So what happens when you tell your brain “I can’t have that brownie, I can’t have that brownie, I can’t have that brownie?” There is only one thing on your mind for food and guess what it is – the brownie!
 
In the same way that you set up a plan to have easily accessible healthy food around, we all need to also retrain our brains to consider better choices before the disaster hits. Before the drive home and before hunger pains set in, start to recall how amazing fresh strawberries taste, or how flavorful grilled asparagus is with a touch of Parmesan cheese. Whenever possible, have your dinner prepared or at least planned the night before. One trick I have learned is start dinner for the next night as I’m clearing the table and washing dishes. This way I come home and finish cooking dinner that was started the previous night, eat and then start the first half of tomorrow’s dinner. It works really well.
 
To keep things simple, you can also come up with a short list of standard dinners that you know how to make simply, that fit your daily caloric goals. For me, this is usually fish every other night, alternated with chicken. One night is vegetarian and one night is lean beef or pork. Skip the starches unless it’s whole grain and double up on the vegetables. Salads compliment dinner very well too. Save calories with homemade dressing from blended berries, pears or apples, vinegar, mustard and a small bit of olive oil. Shake it with your lettuce so that a little goes a long way.
 
Don’t forget that this is a battle, truly. And that you can and will win it, and you’ll feel amazing for overcoming the challenge.
Posted on by Angela in Body, Call to action, Diet, Mind, Nutrition, Whole Food Leave a comment

The Infamous Fish Oil/Prostate Cancer Study?

“Too Much Fish Oil Might Increase Cancer Risk”

Wait?  Isn’t Fish Oil Supposed to be Good for Me???

 

The Journal of the National Cancer Institute recently reported data from the selenium and vitamin E Cancer Prevention Trial (SELECT) that supported evidence that fish oil supplementation may increase the risk of prostate cancer.

Before we freak out here let’s look a little further into the data.

First, the primary goal of the SELECT study was to determine if vitamin E could be used to prevent prostate cancer.  The data concluded that patient’s taking  400 IU of Vitamin E had a 17% increased risk of prostate cancer.  The study was not designed to evaluate the role of fish oil supplementation in prostate risk.

The fish oil data was gathered because they measured plasma fatty acids (plasma phospholipids) –ironically, these levels tend to fluctuate after a meal is consumed.  A better study would measure the red blood cell concentration of fatty acids which is a better indicator of actual omega 3 consumption over the past 4-6 weeks.

The difference in data in the two groups was 0.2% which is virtually nothing.

The study did conclude that the that the patients with the highest concentration of EPA/DPA and DHA-3 fatty acids had a 71% increased risk of prostate cancer.

However, the study contained no documentation of any patient taking fish oil or even eating fish in their diet.

So how does that extrapolate out?

My suggestion is to continue to do your research, and hopefully this will stimulate more studies researching actual fish oil supplementation and diet  in correlation to disease.  My bet is that Fish Oil and Omega 3 supplementation will prove beneficial like all of the other studies.

For more science details for you nerdy types like me –please visit the following:

http://www.greenmedinfo.com/blog/how-selected-bad-study-became-big-news

So don’t trash your fish oil yet!!!  REMEMBER–if you get the “Fish Burps”–put those babies in the freezer!  And if you want a really good brand—I recommend the green pasture.com FERMENTED COD LIVER OIL (no financial investment–it’s just what I take)

Posted on by Angela in cancer, Diet, disease, Nutrition, Supplements, Whole Food Leave a comment

Magnesium Monologue

Another big thanks to our dear friend Dr. Chris!  Good stuff as usual!  Visit his site at http://www.yourpersonalwellness.com

Posted on by Angela in Diet, Nutrition, Whole Food Leave a comment