Monthly Archives: November 2012

The Little Things That Matter For Your Health

You’ve been working on your goals since January. Eating right, exercising, getting plenty of sleep are easy when the sun is shining and you’re getting ready for vacation. Wanting to look good in a bathing suit is a strong motivator. But, what happens to most of us in the fall? We start to slip into bad habits. It’s often just the little things that do the most harm.

For example, do you chew gum? How many pieces a day? But, it’s sugar free, you say! Then, what makes it so sweet? Take closer look at ingredients like Aspartame, and ask yourself if you know what they are. If you don’t, look it up. The answers might surprise you.

Do you drink an extra cup of coffee when the days get gray? Is it black or do you add sugar? Even without the added calories from sugar and milk, your body needs extra water to get it out of your system.

As we get closer to the Holiday Season, we need to take better care of ourselves and watch out for the little things like gum, coffee, or highly processed snacks that start to break our body down over time before we know it.

It’s okay to have a cheat day or splurge when someone has baked you home made goodies. And the point is to do your best to help your body handle these times with herbs and tea and rest. Set yourself up for success even when you’re too busy. Just remember to eat portions that won’t give you a belly ache. Eat what’s good for you when you’re stressed. Go to bed earlier when you’re tired and cranky. And, don’t forget to exercise. As they say prevention is the best medicine!

Cookware Salesmans Wisdom: 3 Things You Should Never Do If You Want To Live Longer.

In mid-October, my wife dragged me down to the Holiday Gift show. Honestly, I really don’t like going. Don’t get me wrong, I love the spirit of the Holidays, but I don’t enjoy looking at little jewelry, soaps, beauty supplies and things like that. It’s probably a ‘Dream-come-true” kind of place for women, but it is a nightmare for men like me. And the most of the stuff you see there has nothing to do with Holiday gifts. It’s the same old stuff you see everywhere else. The worst part of going to show is that it costs you about $25.00 (including parking and admission) just to get in. It’s like buying the right to buy things you can find anywhere at premium prices.

Though it was pretty painful for me to be there, there was one thing I kind of enjoyed doing. Men are usually pretty good at finding a place to sit and wait patiently while women shop. (That’s why Nordstrom has sofas in their store for men to sit.) That’s exactly what I did. My son Alexander, 5-years old, who feels the same way as I do about the Holiday gift show, happened to like the idea of watching cooking demonstrations (cookware sales presentation). So we sat and watched an entire presentation that lasted for a little over an hour. My son sat trough without complaining a bit, mainly because the salesman kept on feeding the audience as he demonstrated how good his cookwares are. So we got to eat salad, steamed vegetable, potatoes, corn and even chicken. All for free. Anyways, the salesman was really funny and entertaining and he offered some pretty good health tips along with his smooth sales pitches.

Here is the list of things you can learn from cookware salesman’s sales pitch…

Sales pitch but very good tip #1:
You can cook vegetables without adding a drip of water using his cookware. He said, “Do Not Cook Vegetables In The Boiling water because all the good flavors and nutrients escape into the water. Unless you are making a soup, boiling vegetables in the pot of water is not recommended. Steaming and stir-frying are preferred methods of cooking vegetables. You can try the “Delicious Flavor-Packed Creamy Mushed Potato” recipe featured in July 2012 issue It’s the same concept.

Sales pitch but very good tip #2:
You don’t need to add oil to his cookware when cooking meat. He said if you want to use oil, use Olive Oil, but never use ‘Crisco’ or any fake butter (like,”I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter”. Years ago he met the guy who was involved in the development of “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter”. He told him that, “It is petroleum based product. It’s pretty much same as machine lubricant with artificial butter flavor added to it. Some say it’s one molecule away from being Plastic). Is it true? I don’t know, but it sure does sound scary, doesn’t it? I think I would stick with real butter. And, Crisco never melt at normal body temperature. He demonstrated by leaving a chunk of Crisco on the back of his hand during the entire presentation, and it never melted.

Sales pitch but very good tip #3
His cookwares are safe and much healthier option compare to other cookware like Teflon or aluminum pots and pans. We all know the Teflon coating wears out pretty quickly and the surface becomes rough and scratchy. Where does the coating go? I am pretty sure some of it ends up inside of your body. He also said, never-ever use aluminum cookware if you want to live longer. He added a cup of clean water in the aluminum pot and scrubbed the interior with scrub pad. And the water turn completely black in less than 30 seconds. Aluminum is found nearly everywhere in our environment, but it is still a heavy metal that is very toxic if ingested in excess level. If the water in your pan becomes black after scrubbing it – it’s probably time to discard it.

– Kaz Isogai

Remember in November to thank care of yourself!

I love the month of November. It is a time of family gathering, good foods and lots of great shopping deals. It amazes me how fast it sneaks up on us, before you know it, it’s Thanksgiving! The sad part is that it is also the season of Colds and Flu. As the body goes through that transition of weather changes, rich foods, and losing sleep for those great holiday deals, our body’s immune system is under a lot of stress, we end up with a cold and flu.

Let’s get prepared for Thanksgiving and make this year stress-free and healthy of everyone!

How? I am glad you asked. Let’s start by thinking about how we can take better care of ourselves during the celebrating and shopping. You could eat before you go to the big feast, and eat less dessert or mashed potatoes full of butter. You could get to bed earlier before waking up before dawn to go Black Friday Shopping.

Don’t forget the goals you set for yourself at the beginning of the year. Why set yourself back for one holiday? I hear of people who gain weight over the week of Thanksgiving from simply eating poorly and not getting enough rest – stressing their body out. Remember how hard you’ve worked over the year and let that motivate you to keep taking care of yourself no matter what day it is. I’m not saying you must not have treats or celebrate with friends and family, but know your limits.

Our family started celebrating Thanksgiving the weekend before the official day. That way we have time to visit family with less stress, and enjoy the Black Friday Sales the next weekend by getting more sleep and eating better. It works for us. Take some time today to think about how you can better prepare yourself in order to enjoy the holiday without setting your health up for illness.


Thank You: The Power of Gratitude

Dear Readers,

We are incredibly grateful to you readers who have shared how much this newsletter is making a difference. It has been one year since we started it, not knowing if it would fulfill it’s purpose of helping us share more about living with good health. We are motivated to keep writing!

Speaking of gratefulness, I want to share a personal story with you. Last year I shared about the holiday of Thanksgiving, but this year, I want to talk about attitude.

One day I was feeling really frustrated. The house was a mess, my one-year-old wouldn’t nap unless I was holding her, and my 3-year-old wanted to watch TV all day. Part of me was tempted to let him so I could try to get something done, but I knew it wasn’t good for him. I found myself feeling really burned out and overwhelmed. When my husband got home, I told him I needed a little break, and was sorry the house was such a mess. So, I got on the phone with a friend.

She listened patiently. Then, she suggested I try something new. Why not make a short list of 3 things you’re grateful for every morning? That way I would feel better and happier, and if I started to feel that overwhelm hit, go look at that short list. She said even if I didn’t feel better the first day, I should keep at it for a week.
The next morning, I followed her advice. I felt happy that morning. Then, as the evening approached, my list of chores weren’t getting done. I had a child who refused to nap. That turned into a cranky kid. The other younger one did nap, but with a 3-year-old in cranky mode, my energy and attention was eaten up. So, I could feel myself getting less happy by the minute. Then, I remember my friend’s advice. I looked at the list. I read it a few times, took some deep breaths and found to my surprise that I felt much better and less cranky for the evening when my husband came home.

I did a gratitude list every morning for almost a whole year! Today I don’t keep up the daily gratitude list, but I do start one every time I realize I’m having a hard day. And, I keep at it if I have another hard day, or sometimes for a whole week. I challenge myself to think of new things to put on the list each time.

I share this with you, dear readers, because I hope that you’ll have a chance to experience gratitude and happiness no matter what day it is, even if you have to start out with writing a short grateful list.

Happy Thanksgiving,

Holli Margell, Editor