Tag Archives: healthy living

Featured Giveaway: Joy Bauer’s “Food Cures” – What Does “Healthy” Mean to You?!

Much of this site is dedicated to Healthy Living. Most of us value our health, but what does “health” mean to you? A while back, I shared my definition as follows:

“strong, sound & whole
body, mind & soul,
from proper rest, spirit refresh,
nutritious foods, water
& balanced exercise”

Joy Bauer has a Masters degree in Science and is a Registered Dietician and Certified Dietician Nutritionist. She is often seen on the Today show, sharing recipes and tips on healthy living. Today, I have a special offer direct from Joy!

The Prize: one free copy of Joy Bauer’s Revised and Updated Food Cures Cookbook shipped directly from JoyBauer.com! Entry Guidelines after the book review below.

Joy’s book Food Cures: Eat Right to Get Healthier, Look Younger, and Add Years to Your Life has been completely revised and updated. This is NOT your average cookbook! With 500+ pages of tips, recipes, and how to make eating healthful foods easy (instead of another burden in your life or a crazy fad diet), this book is at the top of my list for helpful cookbooks and nutrition resources! Here’s an overview:

Part 1 – “Welcome to My Office” includes two introductory chapters and tips on how to use the book and “think like a nutritionist.”

Each chapter after this includes details about various food-related health issues and a 4-step program for the targeted concern:

  • Step 1: Start with the Basics – tips and tricks for dealing with your concern
  • Step 2: Your Ultimate Grocery List – featured in the meal plan
  • Step 3: Going Above and Beyond – to maximize your results
  • Step 4: Meal Plans – a selection of breakfast, lunch, dinner, snack, and fun food options (with recipes) from which to choose.

Part 2 – “Losing Weight” – Chapter 3 includes weight loss basics, formulas, charts, an explanation of how different foods affect your weight, and a plan overview for creating your own meal plan.

Part 3 – “Looking Great” includes 3 chapters on food that helps skin, hair, and your shiny whites (what Joy calls “Feeding a Beautiful Smile”).

Part 4 – “Living Long and Strong” includes 6 chapters on foods that influence Cardiovascular Disease, Arthritis, Type 2 Diabetes, Osteoporosis, Vision and Memory.

Part 5 – “Feeling Good” includes 7 chapters on foods that affect your mood, migraines, PMS, insomnia, IBS, Celiac Disease, and cancer prevention.

Finally, Part 6 – “Resources” includes how to read a nutrition label, a detailed list of references for each chapter and an in-depth index.

Still intrigued?! Well, you may be in luck! Joy Bauer is providing one copy of her Food Cures book to a lucky reader of My Journey To Lean! Want to win it?

Contest Rules:

  • Contest ends at 12:00PM EST on Friday, November 11, Tuesday, November 15, 2011. Winners will be announced on Saturday, November 12, Wednesday, November 16, 2011.
  • An email address is required when leaving a comment (will not be visible unless you put it in the text portion of your comment). This information will not be shared or sold by MyJourneyToLean.com. It will only be used to contact you if you are the winner.
  • Winner will be selected using Random.org. Winner must respond to notification email within 48 hours with shipping address and name to claim prize, or winner will forfeit prize and another drawing will take place.

6 Different Ways to Enter (one comment per entry; one entry per entry type per person – max of six entries if all are completed):

  1. Leave a comment below letting me know what “Healthy” means to you!
  2. Subscribe to http://MyJourneyToLean.com and leave a comment that you did so (if you already subscribe, just leave a comment letting me know that too).
  3. Follow @MyJourneyToLean on Twitter and come back here to leave a comment that you did so.
  4. Follow My Journey To Lean on Facebook and come back here to leave a comment that you did so.
  5. Visit www.joybauer.com, sign up for her free newsletter or complete her free diet profile, and come back here to leave a comment that you did so.
  6. Share this contest on your blog, linking back to MyJourneyToLean.com and leave a comment here with the link to your post included (comments must be left on this blog; comments on other blogs do not qualify) OR email a link to this post to 5 or more of your friends and come back here to leave a comment that you did so.

For a glimpse into the book, download the Joy Bauer.com

Resource: Cool Apps for Organic Living from Saagara

Saagara is an online health and wellness company. With doctors, engineers, yoga experts, and design staff on board, their goal is to produce online tools and applications for the general public that will help us all live healthier, more satisfying lives.  I recently got an Android phone and came across two of their apps (also available for iPhone) that I wanted to share with you all.

The first app is the Smart Foods – Organic Diet Buddy App! This one provides a large list of farmers markets with locations all over the country (search by name or city and/or state)! Both the downtown Greenville “Carolina First Saturday Morning Market” and the “Greenville State Farmers Market” on Rutherford Road are listed!

It also provides a list of produce with a quick reference on whether it’s best to buy organic or if it’s safe to choose non-organic options. Though we strive to eat as 100% organic as possible, for those that are still in the transition to full-time organic, this is a great resource on where you might cut corners (and cost). Along with each type of produce, it also gives nutritional benefits and how to clean and prep the produce.

The second app is the Relax – Stress & Anxiety Relief App! This application is basically a breathing exercise. Over time, you increase the length of your breaths and have fewer breaths per minute. This is a proven method of stress reduction and helps us be more conscious of taking deep breaths.

Saagara has several other apps in the works, so if you have a Smart Phone, stay on the look out! What are your favorite healthy living apps? Let me know in the comments section!

Why Make a Meal Plan?

Each week when I find out what’s going to be in our produce delivery, I begin a meal plan. It’s a simple chart of recipe ideas. I start with a list of what’s in this week’s basket as well as what I have on hand. Then I start searching recipe sites, cookbooks, magazines and blogs for new ideas, especially on the items I haven’t cooked with much but would hate to throw away. There are so many excellent resources at our fingertips!

Meal planning is a great way we found to trim our budget (and our waistlines). My goal each week is to use everything in our delivery and not have to purchase anything but staples at the grocery store. This is where the budget savings comes in. I don’t always stick to cooking the exact meal on the exact day it’s scheduled, but having a plan helps me utilize every piece of my basket to its fullest potential.

Also, it helps me think ahead and make sure I’m getting fresh, organic fruits and vegetables in my family’s diet. Sometimes it’s easier to get caught up in our all-to-busy lifestyles and run for take-out or quick fix foods (which are often overly processed and not good for us). When our meals are planned (including our snacks), we find ourselves snacking on extra pieces of fruit instead of sweets, so we avoid empty calories.

The Milk and Honey Organics basket helps me be creative with our menu too. We still have some standard meals that almost always show up on the menu (like Tuesday night Pizza Night), but we’re also able to try new things that I might not have picked up had I gone to the grocery store.

Investing time in writing out a meal plan helps me make the most of my time, money, and health. Below is my meal plan for this week. I hope it helps you as much as it helps me. Click on the link below to view a PDF version with interactive links for recipes.

Weekly Meal Planner 6.3-9.11

Have a happy and healthy week! And don’t forget to place your order by Tuesday for next week’s basket of sweetness! Bon Appetit! ~Melissa

Health Workshop: Temples of Praise

This past Tuesday night, we had a Ladies Ministries Meeting at our church, Heritage Bible Church. Katie Gerdt was our keynote speaker (you may remember some of her musings about God & Beauty that I’ve posted on the blog previously). She shared her personal testimony concerning a right view of food and biblical stewardship of our bodies and gave a challenge from the Word. The topic was “Temples of Praise: Worshiping God in How We Care for Our Bodies.” Here are the slides from her presentation:

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You can download a PDF copy of the presentation here: Temples of Praise Presentation by Katie Gerdt.

After the presentation, we had healthful snacks:

  • Fresh vegetables and hummus
  • Baked pita crackers
  • Yogurt with fresh berries and granola
  • Chocolate Beet Cupcakes (we had the ladies guess what fruit or vegetable was hidden in these chocolate cupcakes and drew a name from the correct answers to win a copy of one of the books referenced throughout the evening)

We concluded the evening with a panel discussion, followed by fellowship and one-on-one Q&A. It was a privilege to be part of such an event. I only wish we had more time. Hopefully, Heritage will host another one of these workshops soon!

You’re Invited: Women’s Ministry Meeting @HBCGreer, 7PM, Tuesday, April 5th!

Next Tuesday, April 5th, 2011, there will be a Ladies Only fellowship at my church, Heritage Bible Church, in Greer, SC. The event starts at 7pm (they usually last about 90 minutes).

Our church holds these special functions quarterly for ladies only! It’s a night to get out, enjoy fellowship with other women, learn, and have fun. Next week’s theme is Health & Wellness! The evening will begin with a personal testimony and challenge by Katie Gerdt (I’ve shared a few of her devotionals on my blog before). Then we’ll have a break with healthful snacks. And we’ll conclude the evening with a panel discussion (yes, you can submit questions). They’ve asked me to sit on the panel as the “Fitness” side of things. I am humbled by this opportunity and very excited to share what the Lord has taught me in my journey over the past few years. Other panelists, Lord-willing, will be a Registered Dietician, a Healthy Mom with young kids, a Healthy Mom with teens (who happens to have a Bachelors in Physical Education), and maybe a woman who is in a later stage of life who has learned to cope with various physical challenges.

Here’s a list of resources I submitted to the event coordinator. I hope you find them helpful:

Resources:
The Holy Bible, first and foremost resource for EVERY aspect of life, including health and fitness.
Books:
  • The China Study: Startling Implications for Diet, Weight Loss and Long-Term Health, by T. Colin Campbell, PhD, and Thomas M. Campbell II.
  • Food, Fitness, and Faith for Women: A 21 Day Journey to a New You, by Freeman-Smith.
  • Good Carbs, Bad Carbs, Johanna Burani, M.S., R.D., C.S.E.
  • In Defense of Food: An Eater’s Manifesto, by Michael Pollan.
  • Organizing Your Private World, by George MacDonald.
  • Reasonably Thin: The Spiritual Aspects of Over and Undereating, by Jesse Dillinger.
  • Will Medicine Stop the Pain? by Elyse Fitzpatrick and Dr. Laura Hendrickson.
  • Women’s Health Total Fitness 2010 (there’s one for each year, they also have one for Men’s Health).
  • Yoga Daily Exercises: A 7-day Program to Harmonize the Body and Soul, published by Parragon Books Ltd.
Cookbooks:
  • Betty Crocker’s Healthy New Choices.
  • Simply Organic: A Cookbook for Sustainable, Seasonal, and Local Ingredients, by Jesse Ziff Cool.
Blogs by HBC Ladies:
Other Blogs/Websites:
Magazines:
  • Everyday with Rachel Ray magazine
  • Fitness Magazine
  • GO Magazine – available for free in several coffee shops downtown
  • Natural Awakenings – available for free in many grocery stores
  • Prevention Magazine
  • Self Magazine
  • Shape magazine
  • Women’s Health (Men’s Health also available)
  • Yoga Journal
Tools:
  • 50 Ways to Work Out on the Ball, by Elizabeth Gillies – deck of 50 cards
  • free weights (5#, 10#, 15#) or bands (light, medium, heavy) for resistance training
  • jump rope
  • kettlebell
  • Pilates Box, by Antje Korte & Barbara Marckhgott – 40 exercise cards + book with training programs
  • Pilates with Workout Circle DVD (comes with workout circle and book), by Dina Matty & Keft Burdell
  • tennis shoes – save up and spend the money – I like New Balance
  • The Biggest Loser Workout DVDs: Cardio MaxWeight Loss YogaBoot Camp, etc.
  • workout/yoga mat
  • workout ball
Obviously, I don’t endorse everything from any one resource (except the Bible), but these are some things that have been helpful in my journey towards a healthier lifestyle.
Hope to see you there! ~Melissa

Book Review: Food, Fitness, and Faith For Women

Review: Food, Fitness, and Faith for Women: A 21 Day Journey to a New You, by Freeman-Smith. 239 pages. ($9.99 on Amazon.com or $6.95 on FamilyChristian.com)

This book is a quick and enjoyable read! I would highly recommend it for anyone! If you read one chapter a day, it should take you 5 minutes or less each day. It subscribes to the adage that it takes about 21 days to form a habit. It’s full of practical tips to help you start or continue your journey towards a healthy lifestyle in every aspect of your life, beginning and focusing on biblical truth and principles. Freeman-Smith uses lots of Scripture references from multiple translations for ease of understanding and application. The last few pages of the book contain a suggested “Read the Bible in a Year” plan.

This book is NOT…

  • Overwhelming
  • A workout guide
  • A meal plan
  • Or even a spiritual road map
  • And it’s not just for women (in my opinion)

This book IS…

  • Encouraging
  • Challenging
  • Simple
  • Practical
  • For Anyone! (would make a great stocking stuffer)

21 chapters, each consisting of…

  • Practical tips for emotional, physical, and spiritual health
  • Page of Scripture passages
  • Page of Motivational quotes
  • Page for Journaling with a thought-provoking question at the top

A few of my favorite quotes from the book:

“Healthy living is a journey, not a destination, and that journey requires discipline” (p. 12).

“Food ought to be a refreshment to the body, and not a burden” (St. Bonaventure, quoted on p. 48).

“Regular exercise allows you to build your muscles while you’re clearing your head and lifting your spirits” (p. 59).

“Measure the size of the obstacles against the size of God” (Beth Moore, quoted on p. 68).

“Physical fitness is not the result of a single decision that is made ‘once and for all.’ Physical fitness results from thousands of decisions that are made day after day, week after week, and year after year” (p. 90).

“Remind yourself that on every step of that journey, you have a traveling companion: your Heavenly Father” (p. 95).

“God wants you to get enough rest. The world wants you to burn the candle at both ends. Trust God” (p. 125).

“He does not believe who does not live according to his beliefs” (Thomas Fuller, quoted on p. 151).

“You don’t have to be perfect to be wonderful,” and “If you’re a woman who has become discouraged with your inability to be perfectly fit, remember that when you accepted Christ as your Savior, God accepted you for all eternity. Now it’s your turn to accept yourself” (p. 220).

PS – They have one for men too:

Celebrating 10,000 Hits with Guest Author Catherine Hosack and Her Zucchini-Tomato Pesto Rolls Recipe

I met today’s guest author several years ago at a local Barnes & Noble while we waited for the midnight release of the final Harry Potter book. Catherine Hosack is a dear friend who is also in a journey towards better health. She writes a blog called “Going Raw: Adventures in Uncooking.” Check it out here. I wanted a guest author to help me celebrate 10,000 hits on my blog, so I asked her to share her story with my readers, and here it is:

“I love Melissa’s “journey to lean” blog for a lot of reasons; for one, it shows that everyone has their own spiritual and physical health journey to experience. The process of learning what is best for our individual bodies, minds, and spirits is, I think, an essential part of our lives. As Melissa’s blog testifies, this process can be hard, but it’s worth it. My personal journey along these lines has led me to eating a mostly raw, Vegan diet. Briefly, a Vegan raw food diet is a pure vegetarian diet of fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds. In order to qualify as raw, no food can be heated above 118º F, which is the temperature at which the whole live enzymes and nutrients in the food start to be destroyed.

“I started eating this way because in 2002 I was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis, which basically means that my immune system and my colon were not happy. After seven years of dealing with really strong medications and a very bleak outlook for my long-term health, I decided to increase my health through nutrition. I decided to try a raw food diet because it maximizes one’s intake of live enzymes, antioxidants, and alkaline-forming foods – all of which actively improve your body’s immune system and increase your natural health. The idea, in short, is to eat foods that make you stronger, instead of eating foods that make you weak and therefore more susceptible to disease.

“Transitioning to this new way of life was difficult at first, but now I am happy to say that after a year and a half of eating a diet heavy in raw foods, I have experienced NONE of the ulcerative colitis symptoms that used to disrupt my life every couple months. Additionally, I have more energy, I hardly ever get sick (not even a cold), and I’ve experienced other unexpected health benefits as well.

“I LOVE raw food. If I go a couple meals without a big raw dish, I crave it. I still eat cooked foods sometimes, of course, and it’s still fun to eat my old favorite foods like Pad Thai and pumpkin pie and things like that… but as time goes on, I feel less and less drawn to my old comfort foods, and more and more attracted to my new favorite dishes, like avocado-carob pudding, fresh sprouts, garden-fresh okra, and marinated eggplant.

“This is one of my favorite raw food recipes.”

~Catherine

ZUCCHINI-TOMATO PESTO ROLLS by Catherine Hosack

  • PESTO INGREDIENTS
    • 1 cup of pine nuts or walnuts, soaked in water for 8 hours or more
    • 1 cup of fresh basil
    • 3 cloves of garlic
    • 2 tablespoons olive oil
    • dash of sea salt to taste
    • Appliance needed: blender or chopper
  • OTHER INGREDIENTS
    • A couple medium tomatoes or 3-4 small ones
    • 1 zucchini

INSTRUCTIONS

“Blend all the pesto ingredients in some sort of small blender or chopper. Next, you need to make thin zucchini-strips. You can either do this by getting a big knife and cutting your zucchini carefully, lengthwise; but it’s far easier to use a cheese slicer if you have one. Just hold the zucchini and pull the slicer down from one end to the other, keeping the thickness of the slice as even as possible.

“Dice the tomatoes into pieces about the size of large grapes. Then take a slice of zucchini, spread pesto on the slice, and stick a tomato on one end of the zucchini slice. Carefully roll the zucchini around the tomato. I like to grind peppercorns over the finished rolls. These are so tasty…and cute too!”

Bon Appetit! I hope you enjoy this raw Vegan treat! Don’t forget to check out Catherine’s blog! ~Melissa