Insulin Resistance in your brain: Why you don’t want this and how to test for it

When you hear insulin resistance, you probably think of diabetes or blood sugar issues.  When you have insulin resistance, your cells are not responding very well to insulin’s message to take up the circulating glucose or sugar in your bloodstream for energy and suddenly you are on the path to Type 2 Diabetes. Your blood sugar remains high and your cells do not get the energy they need to perform optimally.  And you feel crappy.

Did you know that insulin resistance also happens in the brain? Your neurons end up not getting the energy they need from glucose to produce energy and communicate with each other and your brain health suffers.  A slow down in energy metabolism caused by insulin resistance leads to oxidative stress, DNA damage, and mitochondrial dysfunction which then ultimately leads to inflammation.  A not so pretty cascade of events.

Dr. Dale Bredesen, author of  The End of Alzheimer’s  lists insulin resistance as one of the major underlying causes of Mild Cognitive Impairment and Alzheimer’s Disease.  This has also been called Diabetes of the Brain.

Maintaining optimal blood sugar levels is imperative to your brain health and the health of your whole body.  In fact, keeping your blood sugar levels in a healthy range is crucial to aging gracefully!  And the good news is that simple changes in diet and lifestyle can make your cells more receptive to insulin and bring down your glucose levels. You can be proactive about protecting your brain from insulin resistance!

Step 1: Get tested! Especially if you have not been to your primary care physician in awhile!  When you check in with your primary care physician each year, make sure that he or she is testing for fasting glucose. This means that you need to make your appointment in the morning!  Optimal fasting glucose levels are between 75 and 85 mg/dL.  Please note that optimal does not correspond with typical lab reference ranges.  If you start to see your blood glucose levels inch up every year, you most likely have the beginning stages of insulin resistance. Warning bells should be ringing when you start to see fasting glucose numbers in the mid 90’s and alarm bells should be going off when you see numbers in the high 90’s and 100’s.

Ask your doctor to test for Hemoglobin A1c as well.  This lab value gives you a better picture of how you are managing your blood sugar levels long term – approximately a three month time period.  This is also a great test to do when you are assessing how your diet and lifestyle changes are impacting your blood glucose levels! Optimally, Hemoglobin A1c should be below 5.6%.

Knowing your numbers helps you determine how assertive you need to be with dietary and lifestyle changes and if supplements are needed to support lowering of blood glucose levels and to combat insulin resistance. It is never too early or too late to start testing and make changes!

If you need help figuring out what to do when you get your test results back, please set up a complementary strategy session with me here.

Is the water you are drinking healthy for you or harming your health? Part II

I drink a lot of water.  I learned when I was in my 20’s that drinking eight ounces of water per day was important to good health.  In my early 30’s, while pursuing my 2nd career in nutrition, I learned that drinking at least half your body weight in ounces of water per day was critical to a good metabolism and optimal detoxification. Over the years, I have encouraged all my clients to drink plenty of water.  After all, we cannot survive very long without water!


But what if our water is polluted and the heavy metals and chemicals in our water are making us sick?  The high amounts of lead found in the water supply of Flint, Michigan is an extreme and tragic example.  Your water supply may have levels of heavy metals and chemicals that have not yet raised alarm bells but are not safe or healthy for you. These heavy metals and chemicals can then hang out in your body over a long period of time and make you sick slowly but surely, robbing you of your health and vitality and causing chronic illness.


I recently attended an environmental medicine conference in Portland, Oregon where an entire hour was dedicated to harmful chemicals and heavy metals found in water and how to pick a good water filtration system to make sure you are not drinking in these toxins.  There was a lot to absorb!  To remove the overwhelm and keep it simple, I included some key take aways and resources from this lecture to get you started on making sure you are drinking clean water!

Is your water safe?

The EPA has established primary drinking water regulations for about 100 of the many thousands of known contaminants that appear in tap water. The EPA has not adopted a single new standard for regulating chemicals in drinking water since 1996.

A 2015 review showed that there were 80,834 reported violations of the Safe Drinking Water Act at 18,094 community water systems across the nation. Nearly 9 out of 10 violations were subject to no formal action by the state or the EPA.

How do I find out what is in my tap water?

Environmental Working Group tap water analysis:

Key heavy metals and chemicals to look out for and/or test in your water supply:

  • Heavy metals: Arsenic, lead, mercury and hexavalent chromium
  • Flouride
  • Disinfectants like chlorine, chloramine, and disinfection by products like trihalomethanes
  • Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA): used in a variety of consumer products. Extremely high persistence in the environment and the human body.
  • MTBE – a gasoline additive used as an oxygenate and to raise the octane number.
  • Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) like benzene toluene, and hexane
  • Pesticides

Why does it matter if these contaminants are in my water?

Over time, these heavy metals and chemicals build up in our bodies and cause toxicity to our brain, nerves, immune system, reproductive system, blood vessels, liver, kidneys and affect our hormones and energy production.  For example, volatile organic compounds like benzene, toluene, xylene, and hexane found in drinking water in much of the USA can affect your nervous system and cause learning, memory, and mood problems, as well as fatigue, headaches, and insomnia.

Water filtration systems:

Reverse osmosis: This process pushes tap water through a semipermeable membrane that blocks particles larger than water molecules.

Pros: Effective at removing many contaminants including arsenic, fluoride, hexavalent chromium, nitrates and perchlorate.

Cons: Does not remove chlorine, chloramine, radioactive gases, THM or other VOCs.

**Many RO systems also include an activated carbon component than can remove additional

contaminants from your water like the ones listed above.

Wastes a lot of water – three to twenty times more water than they produce.

Carbon Filtration:

Coconut shell based micro pores are cleaner & best for wide variety of chemicals
.5 micron catalytic coconut-based carbon block is optimal
*Chloramine removal requires catalytic-grade carbon

Please refer to this awesome hand out provided by Dr. Tina Beaudoin and Dr. Anne Marie Fine for good vetting questions to ask water filtration system manufacturers for point of use filtration devices and filtration devices for whole house filters.  This hand out also includes great resources to test your water!   >>Handout<<

Two water filtration systems that I recommend:

Pure Effect Filters:

Berkey Water: *Must add on a fluoride and arsenic reduction element.

Wherever you start, some filtration is better than none!  Find out from the resources provided here what contaminants are most prominent in your water and then choose a water filter system within your budget that best removes the contaminants found in your water.  A little time and investment on your part, but definitely well worth it!  After all, you have to drink water to live and clean water really does support optimal health and vitality!  Protect yourself now; don’t rely on the federal government or your state to do it for you!




My Top 5 Supplements for Optimal Brain Health

Over the past six months, I have been attending practitioner training’s and conferences to learn all I can about the brain and why our memory and overall brain performance starts to slip. I did not expect there to be a simple answer. After all, a drug that prevents Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) would have been invented by now if the answer was easy.  But nonetheless, my calling is to help all people preserve their precious brain function, including memories. I just don’t want to bear witness to another member in my family being diagnosed with AD, and don’t want to see anyone else go through this traumatizing experience either.

As the incredible Dr. Dale Bredesen has outlined in his research, there are multiple “types” of AD. It is our responsibility to figure out what is driving the neurodegeneration in each person. Is it inflammation, insulin resistance in the brain, low hormone levels, nutrient deficiencies, toxins that have crossed the Blood Brain Barrier, or a vascular issue?

As I attended these training’s and conferences, I observed that the experts in this field mentioned several key supplements over and over again for optimal brain support and to help reverse cognitive decline. So here are the five top supplements I suggest to support your brain for optimal performance and cognitive function:


  1. Acetyl L-Carnitine is the acetylated ester of L-carnitine. It participates in cellular energy production and in the maintenance of neurons. It also repairs neuronal damage. In a nutshell, research shows that Acetyl L- Carnitine helps to energize the brain, increase levels of important neurotransmitter chemicals needed for memory and focus, and repair the damage done to brain cells by stress and poor nutrition.
  1. Phosphatidyl Serine (PS) is a nutrient essential for optimal brain function. Because PS is crucial for the overall health of brain cells, research on PS has shown that it benefits a wide range of brain activities such as mental focus, memory recall, and performance on tasks. PS helps neurons talk to each other, which is essential for memories to be both formed and recalled.
  1. High DHA fish oil: DHA is a structural molecule in all cell membranes, including neuronal membranes. DHA is a precursor to docosanoids, which have anti-inflammatory, immune regulatory and protective actions in the context of various inflammatory responses. Optimal DHA status may be associated with a lower risk of dementia. See UltraDHA for an example of a high quality and high potency DHA fish oil.
  1. Curcumin has been shown to decrease inflammation throughout the body, including the brain! Curcumin reduced development and severity of AD in animal models by reducing plaque aggregation and plaque induced oxidative stress. (1)  Curcumin is also protective to the heart, the liver and the gut. It also helps decrease allergies and is great at reducing joint pain!  Note: most forms of supplemental curcumin are poorly absorbed. CurcumEvail has demonstrated superior absorption in plasma.
  1. Huperzine A is a natural cholinesterase inhibitor (inhibits the acetylcholinesterase enzyme from breaking down acetylcholine, thereby increasing the levels of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine). It is derived from the Chinese herb Huperzia serrata. In the brain, acetylcholine functions as a neurotransmitter and a neuromodulator. It plays an important role in arousal, attention, memory and motivation. There is evidence that huperzine A may compare favorably in symptomatic efficacy to cholinesterase inhibitors currently in use. In addition, huperzine A has antioxidant and neuroprotective properties that suggest that it may be useful as a disease-modifying treatment for Alzheimer’s disease (AD).


Suggested doses of these above mentioned supplements depend on whether you are using them for optimal brain performance or to help reverse mild cognitive decline.  Please set up a strategy session with me if you are concerned that your brain is not functioning optimally and you are ready to take a preventative approach to cognitive decline!  Remember, Alzheimer’s Disease does not suddenly start when you are 60 or 70 years old.  Dr. Dale Bredesen recommends taking a preventative approach starting at age 40!  Please see my previous blog  “Are You Afraid of Getting Alzheimer’s Disease?”



  1. Baum L, Ng A. Curcumin interaction with copper and iron suggests one possible mechanism of action in Alzheimer’s disease animal models. J Alzheimers Dis. 2004 Aug;6(4):367-77.




Five out of thirty women sleep well? Starter tips to sleep soundly!

A couple of weeks ago, I participated in a three day women’s retreat at Mayacamas Ranch in Calistoga, hosted by Julie Mikos-Houlihan at The Healing Farm. I went with no expectations and decided to be surprised by what I learned and experienced over the course of the retreat. At the end of the long weekend, I learned that what I needed most that weekend was community with 30 beautiful women who were all there to learn, heal, and figure out their paths moving forward. Surprisingly, I did not journal once and only read my book for about ten minutes each evening.

What surprised me most, though, was a moment during Dr. Amy Nett’s lecture on balancing female hormones. There were so many questions on supplements to help with sleep and anxiety. This prompted Dr. Nett to ask how many women in the room actually slept well. Only five of thirty women raised their hands! Wow, this is an epidemic, I thought. One woman I talked to said that she had given up and just accepted that she was sleep deprived every day.

If you don’t sleep well, be assured that there is help! Often it is a minor tweak that needs to happen and sometimes it is necessary to look at more aggressive supplementation or hormone replacement therapy for a designated period of time. Believe me, as a woman that struggles with sleep, I have gone through rough patches. But I keep on learning and adjusting and trying something different and my sleep improves!

beth yawn

The topic of sleep is vast and there are hundreds of recommendations to improve sleep. Here are five tips that I have found most useful over the last several years as a woman in my late 40’s! A good place to start if you are wide eyed and anxious in the middle of the night!

  1. Take stock of how much caffeine you are drinking and when you are drinking it. Keep caffeine to a minimum and stay away from it in the afternoon and evening. If you are a slow metabolizer of caffeine and find it makes you jittery, this is especially important. You may even find that coffee or tea in the morning affects your night time sleep. About five years ago I was drinking a lightly steeped white tea in the afternoon. The caffeine content was low, so I did not correlate it with my inability to fall asleep. When I removed it from my afternoon routine, I fell asleep within five to ten minutes of hitting the pillow! I replaced it with a decaffeinated tea and found I did not need the caffeine in the afternoon anyway!
  1. Several years ago, one of my doctors “prescribed” reading a novel (the old fashioned paper kind) before going to sleep. This forced me to shut down my electronics at least thirty minutes before going to sleep, to allow for reading time. Wow, what a difference this has made for me…when I follow the prescription! My sleep is restless when I shut down right before going to bed. It is peaceful and more deep when I read for awhile right before bed. All that blue light from our laptops, phones, etc. raises our hormone cortisol which is supposed to be going down at night…not up! If reading novels is not your thing, consider journaling in a notebook, coloring therapy, or another fun activity that does not involve your laptop.
  1. What you eat during the day and especially the evening affects your sleep. If you are eating a big dinner an hour before going to bed, you are still going to be digesting when you are trying to go to sleep. Eating too many processed carbs or sugar at night will also affect your sleep. Most likely, you will wake up at 2:00 or 3:00 am in the morning and feel alert. Your blood sugar has likely dropped too low after a big processed carbohydrate or sugar spike and it has signaled your brain to release adrenaline. On the other side, eating too low of a carbohydrate diet and not getting any healthy carbs in the evening can lead to low serotonin levels in some women, which then negatively impacts sleep since you need serotonin to make melatonin, your sleep hormone! Experiment with what you eat in the evening to see what works best for you. Substituting 1/2 sweet potato for processed carbs like pasta or a sugary night time snack along with some fat like 1 TB olive oil or coconut oil might just do the trick! P.S. Although I love dark chocolate, eating even one square in the evening can disrupt my sleep. And I have also heard this from many other women!
  1. If you do wake up in the middle of the night, try deep belly breathing and focus on all that you are grateful for. Deep belly breathing helps to relax you and being in a state of gratitude dispels worry and fear of not getting enough sleep. I love that science has proven all this now…we just have to remember to practice it!
  1. Start with the supplement magnesium to help you sleep. Magnesium is a mineral that plays a role in over 300 enzymatic reactions in our body! Stress depletes magnesium, yet the more stressed we are, the more magnesium we need! Magnesium is found in plant foods, but most of us do not get enough through diet due to deficient minerals in our soil and our lifestyles. I suggest starting with 300 mg Magnesium Citrate or Magnesium Malate before bed and increasing to 450 mg if you need to. I cannot tell you how many women have reported sleeping soundly with just the addition of a magnesium supplement!


If you are still having problems sleeping through the night after trying these five tips, please contact me to set up a complementary strategy session to discuss what we can do to help you sleep peacefully again!




Are you afraid of getting Alzheimer’s Disease?

What chronic disease are you most afraid of? I was asked this question many years ago by my instructor in one of my nutrition classes. At the time, I answered cancer. And yes, I am still afraid of getting cancer today. But what I am more afraid of is Alzheimer’s Disease (AD).

Scanning of a human brain by X-rays

I watched AD take away all my grandma’s memories and then her bodily functions. So subtle at first: forgetful, having to write everything down, getting appointment times mixed up. Then the progression to leaving the stove or oven on, partially assisted living, and the ever so slight glazing over of her eyes. For my grandma, one of the hardest moments was when her driver’s license was taken away. She loved to drive her big old Cadillac. She then moved in with my aunt where her AD seemed to pick up speed. I was prepared for the day when she didn’t know me anymore. I knew it was coming. But it was heartbreaking when she no longer recognized her son or daughter. I know my dad and aunt could never have been prepared for that.

I also witnessed my uncle on my mom’s side of the family deteriorate to the point where he no longer recognizes his family. Although still alive, his body is not cooperating anymore. He is lucky to have a family that has been so incredibly supportive. Just recently my boyfriend’s mother was diagnosed with early stage Alzheimer’s Disease. I want a different outcome for her.

The good news is that we know a lot more now that we did even five years ago about Alzheimer’s Disease. New research shows that AD is actually several different diseases and custom protocols based on individual testing are essential to stopping the progression of AD and reversing it in the early stages. I am excited to announce that I will be attending a practitioner training in early December to learn about Dr. Dale Bredesen’s protocol designed to combat cognitive decline in individuals displaying varying degrees of memory loss associated with Mild Cognitive Impairment and early Alzheimer’s Disease. Stop the progression and reverse early stage AD? This is ground breaking!!

But this is KEY to understand. Alzheimer’s Disease does not suddenly start when you are 60 or 70 years old. It starts long before that due to many factors, including unmanaged blood sugar and insulin levels, gut infections and viruses not addressed, exposure to environmental toxins coupled with poor detoxification ability. Dr Dale Bredesen recommends a series of tests including blood sugar and insulin levels starting at age 40! Yes, start a preventive approach to AD at age 40!

You can get genetically tested to determine if you carry a higher risk of getting AD. However, remember that you control the EXPRESSION of your genes through diet, lifestyle, and managing stress levels. Genetic testing helps you determine your weak links and where you need to focus more attention on a preventative approach. The rest is up to you! It is a commitment to take a preventative approach and make changes in your diet and lifestyle years in advance of symptoms, but is it worth saving your brain? Your precious memories? Yes!! And starting early also gives you a sharper brain NOW!

You also are at higher risk of AD if you have previously suffered a concussion or head trauma or have family history of AD. I applied to be in a healthy brain study about 15 years ago and was turned down because of a concussion when I was in junior high and because of family history of AD. Apparently I did not have a healthy brain. And I guess all those snowboard falls when I whacked my head (before we all wore helmets) weren’t very helpful either. It is my hope that the lifestyle I have chosen for the last 15 years has made a positive impact on my brain health and now I get to learn how to put together customized protocols for everyone at high risk for AD and for those already suffering from mild cognitive decline. Let’s catch it early and reverse it!! And even more importantly, let’s prevent it from happening in the first place!

Stay tuned…I will keep you updated on what I learn and how I can help.




Navigating the world of supplements: Do I need to take them and how do I know if I do?

Should I take supplements?  Do I need them? Can’t I get everything I need from food?


These are questions my clients have asked me since my first days of nutrition consulting! And valid questions indeed!  Unfortunately, there is not one blanket answer. Your diet, lifestyle habits, stress levels, alcohol consumption, over the counter (OTC) and prescription medications that you take, gut health, and so much more influence the decision whether or not to supplement.  Thanks to better and better technology, we now have many methods to test for nutritional deficiencies and make decisions based on testing whether or not to supplement.


Certain symptoms also point to nutritional deficiencies…you just need to know what to look for. For example, symptoms of a vitamin B6 deficiency include dermatitis, cracked and sore lips, inflamed tongue and mouth, depression, and insomnia.  Symptoms of magnesium deficiency include loss of appetite, nausea, fatigue, weakness, muscle cramps, and in more severe cases abnormal heart rhythms.


When I work one-on-one with my clients, I assess current diet, lifestyle, past and current health conditions, medications, stress levels, and toxin exposure to determine whether supplementation is necessary.  I have witnessed so many people taking loads of supplements without really knowing why and with no real plan.  Assessing your current status, testing, and putting together a plan is the best way to go to restore balance and correct any nutritional deficiencies! You can check out my Targeted Nutrition programs here:


With that being said, I recently listened to a great podcast with guest Dr. Tieraona Low Dog, an incredible physician and healer, on the topic of supplements. She pointed to the fact that MANY Americans are deficient in Magnesium, Vitamin D, and Essential Fatty Acids.  Women are twice as likely to be deficient in Vitamin B6 than men, especially if taking oral contraceptives. And guess what, vitamin B6 is required to make serotonin and melatonin.  And dopamine too!  So if you are depressed, anxious, or not sleeping well, be sure to get your vitamin  B6 levels checked!


Most OTC drugs and prescription medications deplete vital vitamins and minerals.  And sadly, most of the time these nutrients are not being replaced!  There is a really long list of medications that deplete nutrients; here are several more commonly prescribed and medications and OTC drugs that you should know about:


  • If you are on oral contraceptives, please be aware that they deplete vitamins B6, B12, folic acid, and magnesium. Note that these B vitamins are critical to positive mood, energy, good brain health, and proper cell division…very important in the child bearing years!
  • OTC non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like Ibuprofen and Naproxen deplete folic acid. And aspirin decreases Vitamin C, folic acid, and iron!
  • Antibiotics wipe out your friendly gut bacteria, and general antibiotics deplete all B vitamins and Vitamin K.
  • Statins (which lower cholesterol )are notorious for reducing Coenzyme Q10, which is vital for energy!! Anti-diabetic drugs also reduce CoQ10.


Please email me at for a more comprehensive list of OTC drugs and prescription meds that induce nutrient depletions.


Although I prefer to work with you individually and test first, here are general recommendations to cover your bases when it comes to supplementation:


Take a quality multi vitamin mineral formula.  If you are a male or a female that is no longer menstruating, choose a formula without iron.  Take extra magnesium before you go to bed if you have trouble sleeping, your muscles feel tense or cramp, or if you experience frequent constipation. See the list of other magnesium deficiency symptoms above.

Have your Vitamin D levels checked by your primary care physician.  Do this first before supplementing with Vitamin D so that you know how much to take.  If you do not like fish or rarely eat it, supplement with a triglyceride form fish oil a few times per week.  I recommend eating fermented foods like kefir, unsweetened yogurt, and sauerkraut.  If you are not a big fan of fermented foods or they are not a regular part of your diet, choose a multi strain probiotic. We are still learning so much about the gut microbiome, but this is a good place to start!


Here are a few of my favorites:


Twice Daily Multi: does not contain iron so men and post menopausal women can take this multi.

Magnesium Buffered Chelate: one of the best absorbed forms of magnesium

OmegAvail Hi Po: true triglyceride form of fish oil (more easily digested and absorbed)

Probiotic Synergy Spheres: A multi strain probiotic that uses the most advanced patented delivery and shelf stability technology available to ensure maximum potency and viability.


I hope you find this helpful in navigating the world of supplements!



Grilling This Summer? HOW You Cook Impacts Your Health From the Inside Out!

You have most likely heard the phrase: We are what we eat.  And maybe you have also heard the phrase: We are what we absorb and digest.  After all, it is true that you can eat healthy and nourishing foods, but if you are not absorbing and properly digesting the foods, you will not benefit from their nutritional value.  Have you heard this one?  We are HOW we cook our foods.  With the grilling season now upon us, this is a timely post.

How you cook your foods has an impact on your health and longevity.  Foods cooked using high heat in the absence of water, such as browned and sugary foods (think baked goods), processed foods, grilled meats, roasted turkey, and high heat stir fries form high amounts of toxic compounds called Advanced Glycation End Products (AGEs for short), and they literally do age you.  These toxic compounds accumulate in the tissues of the body, leading to low grade inflammation and oxidative stress, which accelerates the aging process from the inside out.  Your skin wrinkles, your joints ache, but what’s worse is high levels of AGEs cause your internal organs to age as well.

These AGEs have such an impact on our health that the A.G.E. Foundation’s goal is to have AGE levels recognized as a health marker, just like cholesterol, blood pressure, and BMI markers!

What can you do to lower your AGE levels?  Try to cook with water as often as possible, using steaming, stewing (crock pot is great), poaching, and boiling over grilling, roasting, and frying.  Water based cooking methods dramatically decrease AGEs.  But we all love to grill during the summer months, right?  A good tip: marinate your meat or chicken in lemon juice, vinegar, or another acidic substance before grilling to reduce the formation of the AGEs.  And eat lots of fruits and vegetables which are naturally low in AGEs and also provide lots of antioxidants to combat the oxidative stress caused by AGEs!  So indulge in a colorful salad to go along with your grilled chicken or steak!

Calm Down to Focus: GABA to the rescue!

Do you have days that you just cannot focus?  Do you feel scattered and wonder if you have a bad case of ADD?  You have so much to do yet you cannot seem to concentrate on anything??

I can relate!  And it is the worst feeling. And what makes it even worse is that you get more stressed as time ticks away and you are not getting done what you need to do!

To the rescue: GABA! I LOVE the supplement GABA.  I sometimes take it at night to slow down my busy brain and get to sleep.  In the day time, I usually go for more energizing nutrients to “charge my brain”, like B vitamins, a few cacao nibs, and even a little caffeine from green tea.  And these often do the trick!

But the other day, feeling overwhelmed, scattered and unable to focus, my “charge the brain” supplements were not the right fit!  What I needed was a calming agent (but not too calming) that helped me focus at the same time. Ah, yes, my GABA supplement.  Introducing one of my all time favorite products: Stress Arrest!  Stress Arrest contains both GABA and glycine.

What is GABA?  Gamma-Aminobutyric acid is an amino acid and is the chief inhibitory neurotransmitter in the central nervous system. It plays the principal role in reducing neuronal excitability throughout the nervous system. Glycine is also an amino acid and an inhibitory neurotransmitter in the central nervous system, especially in the spinal cord, brainstem, and retina. So we are talking calming here…not excitatory!

Wow!  I took one Stress Arrest and 15 minutes later I felt calm and focused!  I was able to easily finish my project that just 15 minutes earlier I could not handle.  And not only was I able to finish that project, but I quickly finished another one that was on my plate!

I don’t believe in magic bullet drugs or supplements.  But my Stress Arrest is now my “go to” when I feel overwhelmed, scattered, and can’t focus.  And yes, this does happen even on days that I do morning meditation or yoga!  🙂

Please note: GABA is contraindicated with certain medications, most notably anti-epileptic drugs.  Consult your physician before taking GABA if you are on a medication.

What does weight loss and a fit body mean to you?

Over the years, this definition has greatly changed for me. In my late teens through my late twenties, it was all about calorie counting, restriction, extreme willpower, lack of joy around food, control, and fear of being in social situations where there were a lot of food temptations. It was about being obsessive and it involved a lot of emotional pain. I often want to forget my relationship with food and my body during those years in my life. But it brought me to where I am today and my new definition of a healthy and fit body.

Today, I abhor diets, needless dietary restrictions, and calorie counting. For me, weight loss and achieving healthy body composition is NOT about going on a strict diet for a certain number of weeks or months, using all your willpower to stay on the diet, feeling deprived and like crap while on the diet, and feeling stressed about food.

Healthy weight loss IS about eating healthy and delicious foods that make you feel energetic, clear headed, and less bloated. It is about addressing underlying health issues such as nutrient deficiencies, hormone imbalances, and chemical toxins that slow down metabolism, fat burning, and affect appetite and even food preferences. It IS about experimenting with foods to see what foods give you the most energy and which foods actually slow you down by causing joint pain, brain fog, depression, and digestive distress. It IS about figuring out why you might be stuck in certain patterns and addressing those issues that are keeping you stuck, even if this creates some discomfort. It IS about finding joy when you eat, being comfortable in social situations involving foods, listening to your body, and trusting your body to give you signals when you are headed in the wrong direction. A healthy and fit body includes a healthy relationship with food.

My cleanse program “21 Day Cleanse and Revive” is the perfect opportunity to EXPERIMENT with new foods and figure out what foods make you feel good and what foods make you feel bogged down. My program addresses underlying health issues and support safe detoxification of chemicals and other toxins that slow down your metabolism and cause you to hold onto fat. Take 2 to 3 weeks to slow down a bit and really listen to your body. Discover a new way of eating that brings you long term health and a fit and energetic body that includes peace of mind.

I would love to hear what a fit body means to you!

Why exploring your neighborhood and the spice cumin is good for your brain!

Several years ago I discovered that change of scenery is great for my creativity! Last week I was walking to a local coffee shop several blocks from my home to do a little writing when I discovered Nourish Cafe, a small space serving up plant based organic fare. Wow, fresh juices, smoothies, wraps, and salads! Yum! And lots of gluten free options too! My brain felt stimulated and excited. I asked how long they had been open and the server replied about one year. What?! How did a whole year go by without me knowing that this cafe existed? I was shocked!

New experiences actually stimulate the release of dopamine in our brain… our neurotransmitter responsible for drive, motivation, and pleasure. Actually, even setting goals or working on a new project can stimulate dopamine release. Have you ever moved to a new town or city and felt completely invigorated? Or felt all your senses come alive when vacationing in a new destination? When it comes to food, our brain also likes new taste experiences! It is common for people to get bored with what they cook and lose their appreciation for cooking healthy and tasty foods.

Ordering a new cookbook or just digging up some forgotten recipes is sometimes all it takes to get your enthusiasm back for cooking again! Or just adding one new spice to your spice rack can make a big impact on flavors. I suggest ground cumin if you have not yet tried it in your dishes. I love it on roasted cauliflower, in chicken dishes, and adding it to hearty stews!

beth-beth blog 2-16

If you have no time to cook this week or just need a break, then be sure to take a walk around your neighborhood to see what you discover! Maybe you will find a local cafe serving up healthy and delicious fare…just what your brain needed!