What is Nom-Day? (Give up Hating Mondays)

So many people have expressed their disdain for Mondays that I have decided I will not have any more Mondays!  Now, I shall have amazing NOM-DAYS!

NomDay is a day to devote to tasty, healthy foods!

What is Nom-Day?

In my video I discuss the Brainy Brownies that my daughter loves so much!  She was begging me for one the other day, then I accidentally mentioned, “spinach brownies” and you should have seen her face!  LOL  (My Colleague Jenni Oates’ recipe)

I love the protein cookies that pack a punch of 6.5 g of protein in a dark chocolate chip cookie.  Sometimes I slip in some white chocolate chips to make her extra happy.

Finally, here is a link for some of the other Nommy recipes we use on a regular basis! 

Happy, Healthy, Eating!

For more information or to schedule a consult, feel free to contact me!

Make it a GREAT Day!

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Healthy, quick tip of the day!!! Get Moving!

We are all busy, but when we take a moment to reflect on how one change can effect our healthy, it can be mind boggling!

In less than a minute I give quick tips you can choose to implement into your daily choices to improve your health!

Get MOVING… my friends! Smile

 

less than 60 seconds to improve your health!

Let me know how YOU are moving… Today, I’m going for a bike ride!

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Are Schools Modeling Healthy Behaviors?

Yesterday, I had the honor of talking with these amazing people. Aimie and Daniel Stillings are traveling the country and the world to create a documentary on Nature Play.

As I sat and spoke with Aimie, yesterday, I started to process and think more and more about the tests our Children are being required to take about every 4th day school.  The tests that they all prepare to take in 3rd – 10th (and now 11th) grades. The fact that we are “teaching” all children all the way down to Kindergarten to “take tests.”  (Bubble in the correct answer)

How does this relate to health?  Our schools are where our children learn the behaviors they will have for a lifetime.  Yes, many habits and such are learned from the parents, but ask most parents of high school students and you will find they are learning “new” habits while at school.

Documentary_image

 

  • Our children are being asked to SIT for 6-7 hours a day
  • Our children are given twenty (20) minutes to eat their lunch
  • Our children are being denied recess
  • Physical Education classes are being scaled way back
  • Our children are being asked to complete page after page of worksheets, even in Kindergarten
  • Administrators and teachers are telling them that walking from one class to another is considered “a break”
  • Our children are being rewarded for good behavior or correct answers with candy, pizza parties, and the like
  • Our children are being TESTED every 3-4 days

Our country is in dire straights when you consider the health of our nation.  80% of the top 4 health problems in the United States are preventable through daily lifestyle choices!

2013_Obesity_Rates

We ask our children to sit at their desks and pay attention for 6-7 hours a day – as young as Kindergarten.

sitting_epidemic

By asking our children to sit still for 6 hours a day we are modeling risky behavior for their future health. Studies are showing that sitting for long periods can be VERY detrimental to our health:

Sedentary lifestyles increase the risk of cardiovascular disease. “For people who sit most of the day, their risk of heart attack is about the same as smoking.” ~ Martha Grogan, Cardiologist, Mayo Clinic

Many of our children are given 20 minutes to eat their lunch, if this includes their travel time and time in line to purchase that meal, this can quickly whittle down to 10-12 minutes to eat. This models poor eating habits that can stretch into a lifetime of issues.  What happens when we eat too quickly?  Check out the information from LiveStrong on the topic of eating too fast.

Our children are being denied recess!

With all the stress being placed on test scores, there just isn’t time for recess! We need another 15 minutes for English Language Arts or Math class.  All fine and dandy, but what good is a test score when you are out of shape, your body begins falling apart in your 2o’s and you are spending days, months and years in doctor’s offices, medical centers and hospitals.  Not to mention, the plethora of research pointing to children retaining more information and grasping information better when given a break and then coming back to the classroom!

How many of us would willingly take a job with 13 minutes to eat and no “breaks” during the day.

Recess 

Our child is lucky, she gets PE 3 times a week! Many districts across the United states, AND our higher grade levels are NOT being given physical education classes.  Those are considered optional classes and if the student requires remedial action due to another test score, these options are no longer on the table. 

I remember in grade school, Mr. Jones taught us how to “fall down correctly.”  Told us that if we learned and then used it if we fell, we would not hurt ourselves as badly. We thought it was really silly at the time, as an adult, I now see the importance of all he taught us about moving on a daily basis to stay healthy!  Our students need to learn to stay active, they need to be taught to enjoy activities so they can remain physically strong and healthy.  When our muscles atrophy due to inactivity we begin feeling more and more pain on a daily basis.  I do NOT want that for my child or any other child!

Worksheets are the norm!

Gone are the days of make believe, kitchen sets, dress up clothes and such.  Our children are no longer, for the most part, encouraged to move around and explore and learn through play – even in kindergarten our children sit at desks most of the day and complete worksheets.  They move to the carpet for story time, then return to their seats to complete an activity worksheet on the story.  Movement is gone from the classroom due to the perception of chaos and the need to score better on end of course exams… YES, END OF COURSE EXAMS FOR OUR KINDERGARTEN STUDENTS.

Moving from your seat to the restroom or another classroom is not enough to be called a break!

What would be your thoughts if your boss told you that your breaks would consist of the time you spent walking from your desk to a colleague’s desk, or the restroom, or the copy machine.  I have actually had administrators tell us that this is a break because they are not being asked to complete work at this time!  I THINK NOT!

Candy is your reward for a correct answer!

So, our children are snarfing down their lunch, not given time to play and move around, sitting for hours and slowing their metabolism and when they answer a question correctly or do something good, they are rewarded with a piece of candy or a mini-marshmallow?  How is this modeling healthy behaviors?  Having a pizza party because their class won a competition is NOT modeling healthy behaviors.  Perhaps, they could be rewarded with some additional time on a PLAYGROUND and be allowed to PLAY!

I was NOT rewarded with a skittle in class if I answered correctly and I still learned and fell in LOVE with learning!  If our classrooms have sunk so low that we must entice our children like Pavlov’s Dogs in order to get them to answer, we have some huge problems.

Finally, our children are being tested every 3-4 days as mandated by districts, states, and our federal government.

I liken this to someone hired for a new job.  You are told to learn on the go and not take breaks. Every 3-4 days someone comes in and administers an exam to you on what you have been learning. The test was not written by someone familiar with your industry so it is difficult to know how to answer the questions.  You will never be allowed to review the test, so you will be unable to discover exactly what you missed and where you made the error. 

Would you be stressed in an environment such as this? Of course you would be stressed!  So are our children.

HOW TO FIX IT!

The dialog has begun.  Parents have begun standing up and speaking out to fix our public schools for our children.

SPEAK OUT!  – Your child is our future! Your child’s future should be a future of joy and learning, and good health!

When we eliminate the high stakes testing, ALL high stakes testing, there will no longer be any need to eliminate recess, no need to eliminate Physical Education classes, no need to rush through meals, and no need to sit for 6 hours a day to complete worksheet after worksheet.  When our children are taught to LOVE LEARNING there is no need to bribe them with candy or treats.

Join your local group working toward eliminating high stakes testing, talk with your board of education, and vote!  For the health of our children and the health of our nation, PLEASE STAND UP!!!

Thank you

https://www.facebook.com/HealthySchoolsLee

http://unitedoptout.com/

If you would like additional information about groups in your area, or how to begin a group in your area, please contact me.

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Protein Cookies–Not Yo Momma’s Chocolate Chip Cookie

What to pack for my daughter’s lunch? What to give her for a healthy snack? Chocolate Chip Cookies of course!  (But not what you are thinking.)

I work to be sure that my daughter gets a balanced diet every day.  I pack her lunch, out of necessity, every day of school, and I work to be sure that she gets a sampling of all the food groups.

Here is one of her new favorites – She calls them Cookies!

Ingredients:Protein Cookies

2.5 cups whole wheat Flour
0.5 cups 
Instant Protein
1.5 cups rolled oats (ground)
1.5 tsp baking soda
1tsp ground cinnamon
0.75 cups ground pecans
0.5 tsp salt
0.75 cups butter
1 cups brown sugar
1 TBSP 
Vanilla
6  large eggs
1 cups chocolate chips

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350* F
  • In large bowl, mix dry ingredients through salt
  • In mixer – cream butter & brown sugar
  • Add vanilla and 1 egg at a time
  • Slowly add dry mixture until all blended
  • Stir in chips
  • Drop by scant 1/4 cups onto parchment paper lined cookie tray – flatten slightly (makes right at 24 cookies)
  • Bake 11-13 minutes until slightly browned on top
  • Cool on pan for ~5 minutes then use spatula to move to wire racks to cool.

I put cooled cookies in zip lock bags and store in the fridge to use in her lunches. They freeze well, but don’t normally last that long.

Here’s the amazing part!  The nutritional figures:

Each cookie has about 169 calories, 8.7 g of Fat, 18.1 g of Carbohydrates, 3 g of Fiber, AND… 6.5 g of protein!!!

Tasty treat AND good for you!  Dip them in milk for an extra special treat!

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5 tips for avoiding the new Respiratory Virus +

 

It is such a scary thought… Your child gets a cold and then, suddenly, they can’t breathe, they turn blue and you need to call 911 or rush them to an emergency room!  (Here is a link to the story about this new unknown respiratory virus: http://youtu.be/BOy7bRP3oak ) It is for this reason – we work to build our little girl’s immune system!

Children Immune Boost

  1. Begin with a solid foundation:  For us, that consists of Incredivites and Meal Shakes for breakfast each morning.  No added sugars and NOTHING artificial to cause additional stress to her little body.
  2. Probiotic – She swallows a tiny Optiflora pearl each morning to give her intestines added good bacteria to fight the bad.  It’s a tiny little thing that she swallows easily with her morning “shake.” (She is holding the probiotic in her fingers next to her face – its THAT tiny… and triple encapsulated so those little critters are ALIVE when delivered to the large intestine!)
  3. Nutriferon – This is an amazing, patented, product that helps the body to increase it natural Interferon levels (the Killer T-Cells that fight off infections) We usually give this to her a couple of times a week, but right now, due to the threat levels, she is taking one every day.What_is_Interferon
  4. Defend & Resist – This is an amazing chewable Echinacea & Elderberry tablet that she can chew.  It’s purple and sweet and she eats them right up!
  5. Cut back on refined sugars and flour… White sugar, white flour, heavily processed foods etc… This tends to compromise and stress the immune system causing them to be weaker than they should be – more susceptible to the crud – whatever it may be.
  6. Reduce respiratory challenges in the home.  We removed all toxic and stinky household cleaners long ago.  Momma has asthma and when we eliminated all those different nasty cleaners – momma’s asthma went away!!!  We use the Get Clean line of products because they work, they are REALLY inexpensive and they last a REALLY, REALLY long time.

Get_clean

Don’t forget the common sense things like, wash your hands often and don’t share food and drinks with others.  Please, notice, I did NOT say spray Lysol everywhere! – this can actually have the negative effect of what you are working toward – the toxins in the Lysol spray stress your lungs and can cause your system to weaken… Same goes for soaps with Triclosan or other antibacterial ingredients… Our skin, naturally has bacteria that lives on it to protect us – when we kill off the good bacteria – then our first line of defense is gone! 

We don’t use antibacterial ingredients in our home, our daughter is allergic to them.  She is also rarely ill and has a VERY STRONG immune system…  There was a very brief time in her life when she was sick for about 6 months straight – we discovered her preschool was spraying Lysol in the room over the students’ heads!  We removed her from that school and the Lysol – and she has never been sick like that since. We use Get Clean Handwash and Meadowblend Cleansing Bar.

The 6 steps above are what WE DO, as a family to prevent the “CRUD” from creeping in, and it has worked very well for us for over 7 years.  I hope it provides you with some insight.  If you would like further information, please contact me

* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

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My ALS Ice Bucket Challenge and Why it Works!

Yes, I had gotten pretty cocky! I hadn’t been called out for this challenge yet.  That all changed yesterday afternoon when Captain Jack Ivins of Team Believe – the team I walked in the 3-day 60-mile along side, last year called me out and challenged me to help make a difference.

Many think its stupid.

I disagree… This is a fabulous marketing opportunity to raise funds and raise awareness for a horrible disease that affects many and is horribly miserable for those who have contracted it.

Why it’s not stupid.

When hundreds of people donate $10 each – you end up with a LOT more than a mere $100 from one person.

When hundreds (thousands) of people post videos of them doing a stupid stunt for all their friends and family and acquaintances to see it begins a discussion about ALS and the research funds needed to help fight this disease.

My Ice Bucket Challenge

I’m going to make him eat my homemade stir fry over spaghetti squash for TWO weeks after this… He poured it slowly so y’all would get your money’s worth!

NOW, START TALKING ABOUT ALS!

ALS Website

Ice-Bucket-Infographic-web

Page to donate directly Link

What you can do after you are diagnosed

I have a colleague in CA who has been living with ALS for over 18 years.  He is very knowledgeable and willing to work with others also affected.  If you would like to contact him, here is a link to reach him as well.  Please let him know that Tess Brennan of FL sent you.

You can reach him at this link.

Thank you for your time!  Make it a GREAT day!

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Tips to Keep Them Healthy when School Starts

School started for us today. This means she will again be with her friends and the other 900+ students in her school.  This means germs from a plethora of places and people. 

I feel it is important to give her a strong start to her school year and boost her immunity and system for learning as well.  Here are some of the things we do to help strengthen and support our family’s immunity when the school year starts – and most of the time. Smile

  • Breakfast IS important.  What we feed our children, first thing in the morning, sets them up for optimum learning, or sets their bodies rolling on the blood sugar roller coaster.
    • We make sure our days begin with a balanced meal. Since time is of the essence and my child prefers to “drag” herself into the kitchen at the last minute, we opt for a Meal Shake – her favorite is Bavarian Cocoa, it provides her with PLENTY of protein, some fiber, and some nutrients to give her the boost she needs.
    • When she feels extra hungry, or I know she didn’t eat a full dinner the night before, we add a 1/4 cup of oatmeal in the morning to give her an extra boost

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  • Add Supplements if your child doesn’t eat 7-9 fruits & veggies a day, eat fish 2-3 times a day, or is a picky eater. The first couple of times she took her “grown up” supplements-it was a bit of a challenge, but when she swallowed them whole we celebrated!  She is 7 years old and swallows tablets better than her daddy!

    Shaklee_Kids

    • Multi-vitamin – Coral takes two Incredivites (These multi-vitamins contain NOTHING ARTIFICIAL because it is important to me that when I am giving my daughter something to improve her health, that there not be ingredients with side effects that could harm her health.)
    • Optiflora probiotic – this boosts her immune system in the large intestine – guaranteed live delivery of the bacteria she needs to maintain a strong immune system
    • B-Complex & Omegaguard Fish Oil – She struggles with focus and the Omega & B-Complex really seem to help her with that.
    • Osteomatrix Calcium/Magnesium supplement each day.  This supplement assists her in relaxing AND prevents those pesky growing pains.  If she complains of her joints or legs hurting, we add a Chewable Cal/Mag to the mix at dinner time too.

  • Washing hands Frequently
    • We know this one, we hear it all the time. Wash your hands frequently.
    • Use PLAIN soap, NOT anti-bacterial soap.  Our kids don’t typically wash their hands long enough to allow the antibacterial soaps to work properly – AND they kill the GOOD guys on the skin that help fight the bad guys.  We’ve been so enamored with “KILLING GERMS” that we have killed off the good bacteria our bodies need to fight those germs!

  • Reduce Sugar Intake
    • I KNOW, they are kids, they love sweet, however – sugar suppresses our immune response. The more sugar and refined carbohydrates we consume, the harder it is for our body to fight off sickness. We don’t bring candy into our home – it just makes it easier. (not often anyway) Ever notice how cold and flu season begins in full force about 2 weeks AFTER Halloween?  (interesting)
    • Other options: FRUIT!  Its sweet, it tastes good, its pretty, and its HEALTHY!  We stock up on fresh fruits and frozen fruits, make frozen smoothees instead of popsicles and other sweet temptations.
    • EAT A PROTEIN WITH EVERY CARB!
      When we eat a sugar it spikes our blood sugar, which then causes a dramatic DROP in blood sugar –> This in turn can cause our children to crave and to become HANGRY MONSTERS!  When we serve a protein with a carbohydrate – the protein works to level off that blood sugar and a more gradual drop – avoiding the monsters!

  • Teach Your Children
    • People frequently get a chuckle out of my daughter (for many things) specifically when she will come up to ask me, “What are my protein choices?” or “Mom, what snack options are available to me now?”  She knows she needs to eat healthy to stay healthy.  She KNOWS she must have a protein source if she is going to have a “sugar choice”.  It makes my life easier when I know she is looking for the right foods.

  • After School Snacks
  • 7-9 a Day!  (Fruits and Vegetables)  – I know, mine is picky too. She prefers fruit and broccoli and that is IT.  We have instituted the you must try 2 bites theory – and the eat it all if you want desert, and it seems to work. (We’ve also implemented a time limit for her for desert as well.)

    Fresh Produce Healthy Grease Monkey

    • Include fruits or veggies at every turn.  Breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks.
    • Taste the Rainbow of Flavors!
    • When all else fails, HIDE IT in their favorite foods.  I shred zucchini, carrots, spinach, moringa, and anything else I can think of to boost the nutritional value of her favorites.

  • Exercise!  We are blessed in Lee County FL because all of our schools now have 15 minutes of recess a day for our children to move and refresh and the minimum of 150 minutes per week of physical education!  Movement is SO important in maintaining a healthy immune system as well as mental health… Get your kids moving!  Park for 3o minutes, a sports team, a dance team, something… Keep them moving and off the couch.

The habits we model and teach our children today are shaping them into the adults of our future! Help our children help themselves by learning healthy, daily habits through Health Choices!

For more information on Healthy Choices or for a personal consultation or for questions on high quality supplements and other products, feel free to contact me, The Healthy Grease Monkey.

Make it a GREAT YEAR!

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