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Transformation Tuesday: How Julie Lost 30 Pounds

One of the BEST things about having a health and wellness business is the AMAZING stories we get to hear from our customers and team members. A passion of mine has always been helping people feel their best. When I first met Julie and heard some of her story, I just knew that I had to share it with you. I know it will be just as inspiring for you as it was for me.
From Julie:
In 2013 I had a disc rupture in my lower back that sent me into emergency spinal surgery. I was off work for several weeks, then finally recovered and it happened again just 2 weeks after being back to work. In total I have had 3 surgeries and multiple injections and prescriptions spanning 2 years. I’ve been on pain medication and steroids for inflammation and had many sleepless nights. I also gained so much weight because of lack of mobility and the pain was a daily struggle. I worked in the surgical department at a nearby hospital and my personal surgeon told me I wouldn’t get better until I was off my feet. That my job was only making the problem worse and I wouldn’t heal standing on my feet for hours on end, lifting patients and heavy equipment day after day. I loved my job and I loved helping people but the pain was unbearable most days. All of the pain and frustration led me to a really dark place in my life I was irritable and no fun to be around. I was a horrible wife and did not have my best days as a mother either. Even sitting on the floor playing legos was unthinkable. I shut out people I cared about and threw a giant pitty-party for myself.
The weight gain frankly just made me sad.
Every picture of myself was cropped from the waist down because I couldn’t stand to see just how big I had gotten. Some people say it wasn’t noticeable (I think they are just being polite). For me, I had always been a small framed girl, so this was really hard to swallow. In 2015, I decided I couldn’t continue this cycle of being over-weight and tired and weak. I couldn’t work out because I was tired and I was over-weight because I didn’t work out and I was weak and not helping the pain because I was over-weight. I decided I had to do something.
So for an entire year I was like a yo-yo.
I’d lose the weight and put it back on and I would eat right for a while and then I would cave…. so began another vicious cycle. At the end of this year I became very ill and had to have another surgery. This sent me back to the pain meds and the weight gain. And I was sad again for months I just figured.. “Well I am 43 years old and the mother of 2 boys, maybe this is just how it is…”

I was Ready for a Change

Early in 2016 (3 Years after the incident),

I was done feeling sorry for myself read more

Is your pH making you Fat?

Is your pH making you fat

Is Your body’s pH making You Fat?

Most people learned about pH in school. The difference between acids and bases can be shown on  Ph Test Strips (affiliate link). It was fun to discover where certain liquids would fall on the scale. What most people don’t learn is how important pH is to your health. Did you know your pH could be making if more difficult to lose weight?

The optimal pH level is between 7.2-7.4. “pH (potential of hydrogen) is a measure of the acidity or alkalinity of a solution. It is measured on a scale of 0 to 14—the lower the pH the more acidic the solution, the higher the pH the more alkaline (or base) the solution. When a solution is neither acid nor alkaline it has a pH of 7 which is neutral.” (Natural Health School) read more

4 Reasons to Cut out the Sugar

4 Reasons to Cut the Sugar
4 Reasons to Cut the Sugar

 

We are going to focus on Cutting out the Sugar! 

This is not a new idea. Lots of popular diets have come to the conclusion that our sugar is out of balance in our Modern diet and this is the cause of our expanding waistbands.

 

Management of your Sugar and Carbohydrates is crucial for weight loss and your general health.

 

We know sugar is so important to get under control.

 

A low glycemic diet in general is healthier than a diet focused on lots of carbs. When our system gets overloaded with too many sugar and carbs, our cells start storing extra carbs as fat in our cells.

 

Our cells love to store carbs, so they are very eager and ready when we over eat our carbs. If we eat a moderate or low carb diet, then we can burn those carbs before they get the chance to be stored as extra fat. read more

Dangers of Artificial Sweeteners

dangers artificial sweetener

Dangers of Artificial Sweeteners

Sugar is everywhere. We know we get too much of it. Can we break the sugar habit?

We as Americans have a sugar tooth. It seems like we can’t enjoy anything unless it is covered in sugar or artificially sweetened. It would probably the best for us if we can completely eliminate the desire for something sweet except from fruit sources. However, all of us enjoy a sweet treat every now and then.

We were told to kick the sugar habit by switching to artificial sugars. No calories = no weight gain…. It seemed like the perfect solution to us since processed white sugar was so terrible. We all switched, but we were still gaining weight. What in the world?

Aspartame only makes sugar craving worse and causes you to overeat… causing even more weight gain.

Here is a little about artificial sweeteners and how they can be much worse than sugar itself:

Aspartame is very unhealthy for us. It is documented that it can cause memory loss as well as brain damage: here here and here.

When you eat aspartame, it causes a rapid fire of neurons, naming it an excitotoxin. This over time causes brain cells to be damaged and die off.

From Mercola.com

The excess glutamate and aspartame slowly begin to destroy neurons. The large majority (75 percent or more) of neural cells in a particular area of the brain are killed before any clinical symptoms of a chronic illness are noticed. A few of the many chronic illnesses that have been shown to be contributed to by long-term exposure to excitatory amino acid damage include:

Multiple sclerosis (MS), ALS, Memory loss, Hormonal problems, Hearing loss, Epilepsy, Alzheimer’s diseas Parkinson’s disease, Hypoglycemia, AIDS, Dementia, Brain lesions, Neuroendocrine disorders

Also from Mercola.com, Aspartame has been linked to:

Headaches/migraines
Nausea
Abdominal pains
Fatigue (blocks sufficient glucose entry into brain)
Sleep problems
Vision problems
Anxiety attacks
Depression
Asthma/chest tightness.

What about Splenda?

From Mercola.com:

Splenda:

  • reduces the amount of good bacteria in your intestines by 50 percent
  • increases the pH level in your intestines, and
  • affects a glycoprotein in your body that can have crucial health effects, particularly if you’re on certain medications”

More about splenda here and here.

Artificial sweeteners have even been linked to weight gain.

This is from thetruthaboutsplenda.com and Dr.Mercola:

Splenda causes gastro-intestinal problems, migraines, seizures, dizziness, blurred vision, allergic reactions, blood sugar increases, and weight gain.

So, no splenda, no aspartame? What can I eat?

If we are supposed to be eating all natural, what are our best choices for sweetener?

Jordan Rubin, author of the Maker’s diet, recommends unheated raw honey (no more than a tablespoon per day), Stevia, and maple syrup in the last phase (phase 3). Ideally, you could satisfy a sweet craving with some fruit – like a smoothie maybe.

We primarily use Stevia. If I’m baking, I have a few recipes that use honey or maple syrup. I normally sweeten naturally with fruit sources like applesauce when making thing for Aidalyn. We find Stevia at our local grocery store and buy it on Amazon. It is much sweeter than sugar in the packet form, so you would only add a little bit for sweetness. Here are some cookies that are low in sugar: Apple Oatmeal Cookies. 

stevia, natural sweetener

 

Stevia is a naturally sweet plant, but is concentrated in a powdered form. I do have some raw stevia that I bought online, but I don’t use it too often.

Here’s the Stevia I primarily use for the familythis liquid form is really convenient for coffee or tea especially.

Trim Healthy Mama (a great book I’ve previously reviewed) recommends using stevia for a sugar substitute. They also recommend using xylitol and erythritol (non-GMO sources) for natural sugar substitute options.

You can buy the book here:

 More Tips for Cutting out the Sugar in Your Diet here. 

What are your tips of weaning yourself off of sugar and diet cokes? read more