26th July 2007

Cinnamon – The “Wonder Spice”

cinnamonIn my recent Shaklee Cinch Recipe post I mentioned the fact that Cinnamon is a natural appetite suppressant. My next door neighbor was surprised to hear that fact and asked me about what other spices she might use to help with her health issues, at which point it occurred to me that perhaps in the culture we live in now – in which we have literally thousands of prescription drugs and over-the-counter medicines, not to mention strange supplements from shady overseas companies, all of which claim to cure a wide variety of ills and woes – somehow we’ve lost our collective knowledge of natural remedies that are right at our fingertips. So I figured it was time to write about small ways in which we can improve our health using the simplest of natural ingredients – spices.

Certainly there are a number of wonderful resources and experts, but in general I find that most people aren’t really aware of how beneficial simple spices can be if we would include more of them (quantity and variety) in our daily diets. Recently Reader’s Digest did a terrific article on this subject in their April issue. And while you can also find a large number of books about spices, I strongly recommend Heinerman’s Encyclopedia of Healing Herbs & Spices as a good beginning primer before you move on to learning more intricate uses for the various spices.

But by a country mile Cinnamon is my favorite spice and I use it often. In addition to naturally helping to suppress your appetite, Cinnamon has been shown to lower blood sugar (of greatest benefit to those suffering from diabetes), as well as lower triglycerides, LDL (the ‘bad’ cholesterol) and total cholesterol. And studies have found that just the smell of it can satisfy a sweet craving, and improve memory and attention. What a wonderful spice! If you’re interested, here is a site where you can learn more about the health benefits of cinnamon.

In addition to mixing in a few light shakes with your Shaklee Cinch drink, try adding a shake or two to your coffee grounds before brewing, or swirl a cinnamon stick in your cup (it’s great with tea also), sprinkle a little on your morning cereal, or try a modified version of cinnamon toast (leave out the sugar). Once you start adding it to a few things you’ll be surprised how many more things you’ll think of to add it to.

posted in Health News, The Daily Diet by Trisha

24th July 2007

Holistic Approach to Health

We are the sum of our parts and each of those parts is in someway interdependent on the other. If we injure ourselves and are not able to exercise, we tend to put on weight, feel sluggish and depending on the length of recovery, perhaps even depressed. The opposite can also be true; if we are overweight or depressed, it is often difficult to exercise. Many things can affect our mood which in turn can affect our overall health. Do you think that your diet only affects your body and not your brain? Do you think that your eyes are not dependent upon a good diet? Or that your teeth only need a good brushing and a good dentist. The fuel that our bodies depend on; the protein, the carbohydrates, the fat, the water, the vitamins and minerals are also needed to feed our brain. It has long been known that children who have had a nourshing breakfast do better in class. Why then do we as adults tend to skip this all important meal? Or worse yet, grab a donut or fast food fix? If it is really about time constraints, then grab a smoothie or a yogurt or even better yet, try a Shaklee Cinch Drink which gives your body the right grade of fuel in the best delivery system. If your not familiar with Shaklee, check out www.shaklee.net/greenhome If your looking to improve or just maintain the health that you have, you are in charge, start now.

Often when we see a doctor it is for a specific ailment; headaches, allergies, and obesity to name a few. The popular treatments are with medicine that is targeted for that ailment only. If our diet is lacking in sufficient nutrients, we usually show symptoms; hair loss, weak nails, dry skin, headaches, rashes,etc. Why not also take a look at your diet.

If we’re stressed, don’t we feel it in our muscles. When we have a massage, doesn’t it ease the stress. Why is it that Spas are so popular. Could it be because they treat the whole person; diet,exercise, peaceful surroundings, lectures that educate and relaxation technics. Why not think Spa. If you can afford a Spa, great. If not, do your own with proper diet, exercise, and relaxation technics i.e., try putting your feet up and listening to beautiful music of your choice for 15 minutes. With that thought, I’m off to listen to my favorite piano music.

posted in The Daily Diet by Joann

17th July 2007

Shaklee Cinch Recipes: Chocolate Orange Smoothie

A number of my friends have been asking me lately for some suggestions and recipes for different ways to use the Shaklee Cinch Shake mixes. Personally I like the taste of them when I mix them just as directed, but every now and then my taste buds want something a bit jazzier, so I’ve experimented with all three of the Cinch Shake flavors (Vanilla, Chocolate, and Cafe Latte) and have come up with a few smoothie recipes. In the next few days we’ll be adding a page of various Recipes, but here’s one of my favorites to get you started:

Chocolate Orange Smoothie

* I don’t recommend using regular milk with this recipe as diary products do not mix well with citrus fruits or juices and although they taste just fine, they tend to separate.
** Cinnamon is a well known appetite-suppressant, so you’ll feel full longer

Stay tuned for more Recipes, and watch the menu above for a Recipes Page link!

posted in Recipes by Trisha

5th July 2007

How Safe is Our Food

How safe is our food? Well, if it is imported from China and if it is seafood, then it currently is very suspect. Just another reason to be an informed consumer. If you want to read about what our government is doing to keep our seafood safe to eat, check out http://www.fda.gov/consumer/updates/seafood062807.html Overall, the US is very dependent on other countries to provide us with farm raised seafood. Yes, you can still buy wild salmon from Alaska as well as the farm raised. And Yes, in Arizona, we can still buy shrimp that has been harvested from the waters off Mexico and we can also buy shrimp that has been farm raised at one of four different farms right here in Arizona .http://www.oceansalive.org/eat.cfm?subnav=bestandworst

Country-of-origin labeling for seafood took effect last year so, you should be able to check packaging and or ask the deli manager where your seafood originated. For produce, meats and other products, the labeling is currently voluntary. According to a recent article in the Arizona Daily Star we should get to know and trust our retailer. They also recommend buying local from farmers’ markets and when possible, buy organic. With fresh fruits and veggies always rinse well before eating them. Again, I cannot stress enough, support your local farmer, especially those producing organic products. They are this countrys last hope.

posted in The Daily Diet by Joann

4th July 2007

Skinny Doesn’t Always Equal Healthy

There is so much obsession these days with trying to look like the skinny actresses and models we all see on TV, in movies, and on magazine covers. What we don’t always realize is that, while some of these women and girls are naturally blessed with a thin frame and a quick metabolism that burns every calorie they consume, many of them must work out daily and nearly starve themselves to maintain their thinness. And in the case of magazine covers and print ads, often the photos are retouched to make the women appear thinner than they actually are.

However, there is a big difference between being trim and healthy, and being so thin that one could count the ribs of your ribcage. Losing excess fat is one thing (and except in some rare cases, a good thing), but losing muscle mass in the quest to be as thin as possible is just downright dangerous. We rely on our muscles for strength, mobility, and stamina. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in The Daily Diet by Trisha

2nd July 2007

The Magic Number

It has been three months since we have started our blog about our journey to lose weight and remain healthy. I did loose weight early on, four pounds. The good news is that I have kept those four pounds off. Four seems to be the magic number with my daughter and I. Do I want to loose the remaining six pounds that I had set as a goal? Yes, I do. Do I have a number of reasons why I have not moved forward? Yes, I do. Do I still have the right attitude and belief system? Well, after careful examination, I have decided that my desire is not as strong as it was when I started. Is this because I believe that my eating habits are generally very good to begin with and that perhaps my body does not want to or need to shed any more weight? Or do I just enjoy eating a diverse diet? Or, did I lack a firm plan to start with? If I am being totally honest, I would say that I enjoy eating and I also lacked a firm plan. So, how do I go about getting back to my original goal? I am not someone who will use a support system. I have to do it on my own. Thats just the way I am. So, this is what I’m going to do.

  • Monday thru Friday-Walk 6am (living in the desert in the summer this is the only time to walk)
  • Monday thru Friday – Pool 5pm
  • Monday thru Friday – Cinch for Breakfast
  • Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays – Cinch for Lunch
  • Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Sunday – Lunch should include at least one day out and the remaining three should be healthy planned lunchs at home.

Dinners are a bit more complicated. We are invited out or have guests in at least 3-4 times a month. My husband loves his meat and isn’t ready to give it up. He also likes to cook. So what’s a girl to do? It for sure that I will be exercising portion control. Ok, time to set up my calendar with my plan.

posted in The Daily Diet by Joann