Are you Functioning at Optimal Health- Do you really know?

You went to your general doctor and he looked at your blood test results and he said your results are fine they are within range and you’re healthy, but are you really? …

Here is what you may not know…

When the general doctor reads your test results he is comparing you to the health of the general public, not to your specific health and the best that you can be.

Have you seen the state of the health the general American public is in? I don’t know about you but I don’t want to be compared in any way, shape or form to the general public when it comes to my health.

Chances are, if you stay within those guidelines disease is brewing beneath your skin and you’d better take control of your own health and not depend on the governments guidelines.  Set your own standards.

No two people are the same nor are their health goals. Therefore, optimal health is an individualized matter.

The World Health Organization defines health as a “state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.”

But what is Optimal health?

In an article in the “American Journal of Health Promotion” by Michael O’Donnell, Optimal health is a balance of five areas of health. These areas are emotional, physical, spiritual, mental and social health. The concept of optimal health focuses on mental health and healthful relationships, as well as nutrition and exercise.

At the physical level it means freedom of movement. To be strong, flexible, durable and balanced.

At the mental level, it is clear thinking  including memory, reflection, analysis and creativity.  To be quiet, yet alert and attentive in the mind.

At the emotional level, freedom of expression.To be free from stress and mental blockages.

At the spiritual level, it is being connected to your essence and to the universe. To be free from attachments and to be present.

Don’t you want to be your best self ?!  Mind body and soul.

As our thoughts become our reality here is some food for thought…

“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food. “ Hippocrates

GO for Life! ™

In peace, health & with much love,joycethumb

Joycelyn Bejar
Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist
Certified Personal Trainer

Books to Read for the Health of It

Lately, I’ve been getting asked a lot of the same question, the information you share is off the beaten path where do you get all this information.

The laundry list is long but here are few to get you started on the path to optimal health.

Here is my reading list :

“Adrenal Fatigue: The 21st Century Stress Syndrome” by James L. Wilson

“Why Isn’t My Brain Working: A Revolutionary Understanding of Brain Decline and Effective Strategies to Recover Your Brain’s Health ” by Datis Kharrazian“Grain Brain : The Surprising Truth About Wheat, Carbs, and Sugar – Your Brain’s Silent Killers” by David Perlmutter-

“Grain Brain : The Surprising Truth About Wheat, Carbs, and Sugar – Your Brain’s Silent Killers” by David Perlmutter-

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_2_6?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=grain+brain+by+david+perlmutter&sprefix=Grain+%2Cstripbooks%2C224

“The Big Book of Health and Fitness” By Dr. Phillip Maffetone

http://www.amazon.com/Big-Book-Health-Fitness-Prevention/dp/1616083794/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1429842783&sr=1-2&keywords=maffetone

“The Paleo Diet For Athletes: The Ancient Nutritional Formula for Peak Athletic Performance” by Loren Cordain and Joe Friel

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=“The+Paleo+Diet+For+Athletes%3A+The+Ancient+Nutritional+Formula+for+Peak+Athletic+Performance”+by+Loren+Cordain+and+Joe+Friel&rh=n%3A283155%2Ck%3A“The+Paleo+Diet+For+Athletes%3A+The+Ancient+Nutritional+Formula+for+Peak+Athletic+Performance”+by+Loren+Cordain+and+Joe+Friel

“Eating on the Wild Side: The Missing Link to Optimum Health”  – Jo Robinson

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=“Eating+on+the+Wild+Side%3A+The+Missing+Link+to+Optimum+Health”++-+Jo+Robinson+&rh=n%3A283155%2Ck%3A“Eating+on+the+Wild+Side%3A+The+Missing+Link+to+Optimum+Health”++-+Jo+Robinson+

and finally, to keep me grounded

“The Power of NOW” by Eckhart Tolle

Click on any of the links provided to enjoy the read.  If i didn’t provide a link you will have to resource your own.. apologies.

I hope you learn a lot and use it for good health : )

GO for Life! ™contact

In peace, health & with much love,

Joycelyn Bejar
Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist
Certified Personal Trainer

 

Go Slower to Go Faster -Heart Rate Training with Phil Maffeton

So you got the fit bit with the heart rate monitor and you want to know how to determine your zone for increased fitness and fat burning potential…

If you really want to increase your fitness level here are the rules…

Taken from Maffetone’s Big Book of Endurance Training and Racing:

1. Subtract your age from 180.

2. Modify this number by selecting from among the following categories the one that best matches your fitness and health profile:

a. If you have or are recovering from a major illness (heart disease any operation or hospital stay, etc.) or are on any regular medication, subtract an additional 10.
b. If you are injured, have regressed in training or competition, get more than two colds or bouts of flu per year, have allergies or asthma, or if you have been inconsistent or are just getting back into training, subtract an additional 5.
c. If you have been training consistently (at least four times per week) for up to two years without any of the problems just mentioned, keep the number (180 – age) the same.
d. If you have been training for more than two years without any of the problems listed above, and have made progress in competition without injury, add 5.

Stay within the 10 beats do not go lower or higher.  The hard part is not going past your zone.  Staying slower will actually help establish a baseline and then you can improve your heart rate conditioning.  It will get frustrating but it will give you you a chance to practice patience and it does work!

What this does is stimulate the full spectrum of slow-twitch muscle fibers to rely on fat for fuel. Besides burning fat, it puts you in a recovery zone and helps improve heart and lungs, increased circulation, and better brain function.  This also helps the joints, bones, ligaments, tendons, and muscles prevent injuries, avoiding chronic pain conditions in areas like the low back, knee, shoulder, wrist and neck.

Going slower to go faster Check it out..  “The Phil Maffetone Method”

GO for Life! ™ jefitthumb2

In peace, health & with much love, 

Joycelyn Bejar
Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist
Certified Personal Trainer

Thank you Edgar Romero for turning me on to this.

Another Bit About the “Fit Bit”

You’re still addicted and you’re still counting your steps and you think that this will burn those extra calories.  Counting your steps and counting your calories will keep you in that same vicious cycle getting you no where :/

You can only drop your calories and work off calories for so long before your metabolism slows down.  The idea is not to decrease your caloric consumption it ‘s actually to eat the required number of calories for your BMR Basal metabolic rate and then get your body to burn excess fat through cardiovascular exercise in your target heart rate zone!

Keeping your calories high while working in this zone will actually increase your metabolism and work in your favor to once again decrease fat, improve heart rate conditioning and improve your overall fitness level, after all isn’t that the goal?!

Do you still believe in your Fit Bit now?

Did I also mention the golden gate bridge was for sale and you can charge people to walk across it?

GO for Life! ™contact

In peace, health & with much love,
Joycelyn Bejar
Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist
Certified Personal Trainer

 

Almond Coconut Choc Chip Cookie ReCiPe- gluten free & Paleo friendly

choc chipcookieIf you’re like many people today you’ve realized that you have a sensitivity to gluten.. This Sucks!

Finding a sweet treat can be challenging.  Here’s a recipe I’ve been playing with for a while and it’s finally ready to put out there into the universe and just in time for a 4th of July Sweet Treat.

They are healthier than the average cookie but still it has sugar and calories so tread lightly.

INGREDIENTS:
1 Cup Almond Flour
¼ cup Organic Honey
¼ cup Coconut Oil
1 tsp Vanilla Extract (pure – alcohol free)
1 large egg, whisked
2 Tbs Coconut Flour
¼ tsp-1/2tsp sea salt
½ cup Enjoy Life choc chips (allergen free)

DIRECTIONS:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
2. In a large bowl combine Almond flour, honey, coconut oil, vanilla, and egg. Mix with electric hand mixer until smooth.
3. Add coconut flour and salt, mix well.
4. Fold in Chocolate chips
5. Refrigerate until the batter has firmed up a bit,
(about 10-12 minutes)
6. Drop a spoonful on to the cookie sheet and bake for 12-15 minutes until lightly browned.
7. Let cool and enjoy your sweet treat : )

GO for Life! ™contact

In peace, health & with much love,

Joycelyn Bejar
Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist
Certified Personal Trainer

Avoid Carbs and Insulin Before Bed

SWEETFRIES5964Carbs are a poor choice as a pre-bed meal. Complex carbohydrates that is.

The reason:  Consuming carbohydrates will result in a significant insulin release. This will  put the breaks on fat-burning.  If that is your goal. Carbs are also much more easily stored as fat in the evening hours when metabolism is naturally slowing in preparation for sleep.  You have very little opportunity to burn off that energy when consuming carbs at night – unless you have some nighttime activity or running a marathon the day after.

Also, remember insulin production is partly influenced by your previous meal. The more carbohydrates consumed the more insulin produced.

Otherwise, stick to protein, veggies and healthy fats for your last meal…

and have a good night : ) zzzzzz

GO for Life! ™jefitthumb2

In peace, health & with much love,

Joycelyn Bejar
Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist
Certified Personal  Trainer

 

 

How do you know if you are Insulin Resistant or Carbohydrate Intolerant?

Continuing on the topic of insulin…

As previously discussed in last weeks blog,
Insulin is a hormone, made by the pancreas,  that controls the level of glucose (sugar) in the blood and allows the cells to use the glucose for energy or storage as body fat for later use

Symptoms to look for after eating carbs:M&Ms

•Intestinal bloating or gas

•Poor concentration or sleepiness

•Feelings of depression

•Frequently hungry

•Frequently fatigued or low energy

•Insomnia or sleep apnea

•Frequent craving for sweets or caffeine

•Polycystic ovary for women

Do not add carbohydrates in back-back meals or snacks because insulin production is partly influenced by your previous meal. The more carbohydrates consumed the more insulin produced.

Just the mere taste of sugar on the tongue stimulates the release of insulin.

About 40% or more of the carbs you eat is converted to fat and stored as body fat.. any wonder you have an excess amount?

Finding your level of tolerance is what’s most important and then eat only whole food sources of carbohydrates, nothing processed or refined.  Once you find this you yourself can find the balance in your diet…Who knows maybe in your life too : )

Insulin resistance or carbohydrate intolerance may be  a precursor to Type 2 diabetes, heart disease and obesity.

GO for Life! ™joycethumb

In peace, health & with much love,

Joycelyn Bejar
Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist
Certified Personal Trainer

Ref material for this blog post from “The Big Book of Health and Fitness” By Dr. Phillip Maffetone… Thanks Dr. Romero for the referral  : )

 

Insulin Resistance and The Rx

Here is the Rx …

sugarI too am insulin resistant and this has been a constant struggle for me in managing my weight. How I manage it is by keeping my complex carbs in small amounts. For instance I take one baked sweet potato and cut into quarters and only eat that quarter at that serving, in combination with protein so that it slows down the insulin rush. Adding a small amount of olive oil to them will also slow down that rush.

As my complex carbohydrate sources, I stick mostly with sweet potatoes, and some white, yucca and butternut squash. Generally, I don’t eat grains or legumes. When I start to get a reaction I pull them out completely for a few days until my system is balanced. Your energy levels, sleep patterns, and hunger pangs will tell you when to put them back in, it’s a cycling effect.

Insulin is a natural hormone made by the pancreas that controls the level of glucose (sugar) in the blood and allows the cells to use the glucose for energy.  When glucose floods the bloodstream the pancreas has to pump out enough insulin to drive that glucose into cells. The more glucose, the more resistant your tissues eventually become to the effects of insulin so the pancreas has to secrete even more and work overtime.

Diet certainly plays a factor but exercise can greatly improve insulin resistance.

Resistance training- is one of the best ways to improve insulin resistance and glucose control. Creating more muscle tissue creates more insulin receptors, improving the absorption of glucose into muscles so that it’s not floating in your blood or being converted into fat for lack of storage space.  As the muscle absorbs the glucose, the pancreas can now relax.

Interval training- which alternates a relaxed pace with bursts of high-intensity movement – like HIIT Training, generates better glucose control than steady-state cardio. The intense contractions that fatigue muscles also break down carbohydrate stores in muscle. The muscles then become much more responsive to insulin as they attempt to replenish these stores.

As discussed in previous blogs  another reason to get a heart rate monitor. This will help heal yourself while you’re getting in shape and losing weight.

Insulin resistance, is a major risk factor for the development of Type II diabetes.

The prescription…exercise!

GO for Life! ™joycethumb

In peace, health & with much love,

Joycelyn Bejar
Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist
Certified Personal

Drinking your Fruit and The Juice Fad

juiceI was about 17 when I first went to Weight Watchers. One of the first rules they teach is to Eat your fruit, DO NOT drink it.  The science is simple…

Your body cannot digest the amount of insulin you are putting into your blood stream in juice form fast enough to use so that it doesn’t convert to fat.  Eating your fruit takes a little longer for the digestive process to do its work at controlling your blood sugar levels.

I thought by now this was common knowledge.  I remember learning this in Weight Watchers way back when I was in my teens.  At the time, Weight Watchers was the only game in town and truthfully it’s probably one of the most solid nutrition plans on the market still.  Though it has its faults in modern day nutrition science, they do teach you how to eat real food and small meals, 5 times a day.  You even get cheat foods if you save up your calories and still lose weight by eating food ..CLASSIC!

The game is about controlling your blood sugar levels throughout the day so that you don’t experience highs and lows.  Keeping a constant blood sugar level maintains your metabolism at an even pace so that it doesn’t become sluggish and have to work overtime.

Today’s fad is all about juicing.. I see people juicing FRUIT and they wonder why they are not losing weight.  And you wont!

Yes there are people who are slim and can drink fruit juice. Their body type and their metabolism is fine with that, but if your aim is to lose fat, you will not succeed with fruit juice in your regimen.fruit

Juicing vegetables is fine, and bonus points for greens,  so long as there is NO fruit in the mix.

If you insist on juicing so be it… Juice away and let me know how that’s working out for you.

I leave you with one final thought, Fruit IS Sugar!

GO for Life! ™contact

In peace, health & with much love,

Joycelyn Bejar
Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist
Certified Personal

Would You like to Do a Cleanse with Me?

Last week I mentioned spring cleaning… This week I will tell you why I’m getting ready to do the Isagenix 9-day Cleanse.

I recently had surgery. “They” pumped me up with anastesia, pain killers and anti- inflammatories that were all mandatory.  I got 2 ulcers and other unpleasantries associated with such practices. While I would normally reject these methods, I succomed to the medical process because I was entering the surgical world that was unbeknownst to me. Something, quite possibly fear, told me to let go and listen to the medical process.

Well now that surgery is behind me, my life is starting to take on it’s normal pace. I’m starting to feel more like myself again, I am ready to put this experience behind me, move forward, get my mental focus back on track, start training again and get game ready.

No more excuses!

Here it is the 9-day Isagenix cleanse:

http://jbefit.isagenix.com/

( copy/paste link to browser if doesn’t take you there)

You don’t have to starve yourself, You get to eat real food, and keep your protein intake high so you don’t lose valuable hard earned muscle. By the way, they have both whey and pea protein options for those who follow plant based nutrition.

I’ve done it a few times and each time I get that feel great feeling all over.

I know 9-days sounds like a long time, but it really goes by very quickly. Before you know it you’re there. If you would like to join me, I can coach you through it and help you get over to the other side where feeling great lies.

Warning you may experience:
•Greater energy
•Weight loss boost
•Improved muscle tone
•Balanced digestion
•Reduced cravings

GO for Life! ™contact

In peace, health & with much love,

Joycelyn Bejar
Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist
Certified Personal Trainer