Summer is right around the corner and I’m here to remind you that the purpose of your body is NOT to get swimsuit ready.
The purpose of your body is to be “fit to serve” right where you are, with the body you have.
Here’s the thing, though – sometimes we get into a food rut, due to stress and factors outside of our control, and we find ourselves fueling on food sources that aren’t optimal for our unique bodies. It can lead to blood sugar instability, poor gut health, brain fog, fatigue, and overall blah.
Feast 2 Fast is a complete reset for nutrition, mindset and spiritual health! No calorie-counting, no macro-counting, no deprivation, no complications – just real food, the way God made it!
If you struggle with anxiety or depression, you know it affects your entire life. It affects how you move (or don’t move), your concentration, your ability to sleep, your interactions with others, even your bathroom habits. Because anxiety is on the rise, and won’t be going anywhere anytime soon, I want to share some little-known triggers for anxiety that you may not be hearing about from anyone else!
Like everything I share, remember that your body’s response to food or internal/external stressors is individual to YOU. What is a trigger for one person might not be a trigger for you. Being aware of how your unique body responds to this world is only something you can determine.
Five triggers for your anxiety that your doctor might not tell you about:
Artificial sweeteners and dyes – not only do they disrupt nervous system function, but sucralose decreases beneficial gut bacteria and aspartame increases anxiety and depression (just another reason to lay off the Diet Coke). Sweeteners can also negatively impact blood sugar – which can increase panic attacks! Food dyes may trigger “mind-storms,” which are issues with the brain’s wiring or electrical activity. No bueno!
Too much screen time – blue light from screens can suppress the hormone melatonin which is needed for restful sleep. Screens can also disrupt the calming neurotransmitter Gaba, along with serotonin – the happy one.
Magnesium deficiency – magnesium calms your nervous system and prevents the creation of excess cortisol, the stress hormone. Some call it “nature’s Xanax.” It’s needed for just about every process in the body. It’s found in nuts, seeds, legumes, and leafy greens, but it’s also an inexpensive supplement! Two of my favorite formulations are the Plexus one, here, or Nutritional Frontiers, here.
Excess caffeine – a little is fine, but too much can stimulate the fight or flight response and trigger racing thoughts, or even panic attacks. Some people metabolize it slower than others, so keep that in mind when you have your afternoon coffee or tea break – your mind might be racing at 1 am!
Stored trauma that hasn’t been addressed– trauma can keep our bodies in that constant fight or flight state, which can lead to poor sleep, inability to concentrate, and panic attacks. Fortunately, there are a wide range of trauma therapies, and many mind-body strategies available to help your body unlock trauma and heal! EMDR and EFT (tapping) are two of the most popular. The wellness center I work with has some amazing trauma therapists and resources here.
Honorable mention: Blood sugar issues: when we’re riding that blood sugar roller coaster it can cause all sorts of poor mental health symptoms. Limit sugar consumption to limit the swing. Consume plenty of fiber-rich vegetables, brain-boosting fats and quality protein with each meal. Many times we fail to fill up on necessary nutrients so we stay hungry, reaching for quick fix glucose fuel and perpetuating the cycle of brain fog and hunger.
Poor digestion: If you can’t digest protein, you can’t make the neurotransmitters needed for mental health. Period. You know that old saying, “you are what you eat?” It’s not true. It should be, “You are what you are able to digest.” When we can’t create serotonin from our food nutrients, we can’t access melatonin either, which affects mood AND sleep. Taking digestive enzymes and working on gut health can help, something I love helping people with!
The next round of Feast 2 Fast, an online coaching group that pairs science-based nutrition principles with timeless spiritual truth to reset your mind, body, and soul starts May 3.Join the wait list here.
The blood sugar conversation is more important than ever. We have to understand how to manage our blood sugar before it starts managing us. Like most “common” health concerns, it shouldn’t have to be normal to have blood sugar that is on a continual roller coaster.
Kris DeFoer is a Nutritional Therapist and owner of Happy Body Health. She is passionate about helping women optimize their nutrition and lifestyles to look and feel their best. She believes that healthy digestion and blood sugar regulation are critical to good health and that a healthy diet and lifestyle can address many of the chronic issues that people deal with today.
This discussion with Kris breaks down why we want to fuel our bodies with food that helps to stabilize our blood sugar, and keep our brain and immune systems strong! Download the episode here or find wherever you listen to podcasts!
– What blood sugar is and why we should care about it
– The difference between hypoglycemia and hyperglycemia
– Kris’ history with dieting and finding a way to regulate her blood sugar naturally
– How many meals a day should I actually eat?
– The stress and blood sugar connection
– What to eat to support a healthy insulin response
– How to eat enough nutrients
– How to support a healthy immune system through food
– The key to salad-building (and a listener challenge)
Steve Welch is a nutrition research expert and past guest on the show. He is the co-author of the book, The Ketogenic Key. In our first episode, he shared why fat is good and doesn’t impact cholesterol the way we have been told. In this episode, we discuss why people get stuck in the cravings cycle over the holidays and how to combat that with a few easy tricks!
How to avoid the temptation of sugary treats
How fat keeps you full and optimizes hunger hormones
What leptin and ghrelin are and how they regulate your eating and influence your urge to overeat
The importance of nutrient density vs fueling on processed carbs
All we hear from the news media is wash your hands, wear a mask, social distance. Is that really a long term solution for supporting your immune system?
Dr. Chad Edwards is a former army surgeon and currently works as an Emergency Physician. He is the founder and director of Revolution Health and Wellness Clinic in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Here, he pays special attention to sports medicine and health and wellness as a preventive strategy to optimize health, minimize injury risk, and decrease disease. Viewing his patients through a holistic approach helps identify subtleties in their function that are beginning to show signs of dysregulation.
This interview is a very balanced and informative take on the current pandemic, what we currently know, and what we can do to support our immune function.
Key topics include:
His experience with Covid patients
What the current numbers of deaths and infections tell us, according to CDC data
The data on wearing masks
The issue of asymptomatic carriers
Common sense precautions to take
Practical steps to support immune health via gut health and supplementation
The magic of vitamin c and nitric oxide (and why you want to avoid mouthwash and proton pump inhibitors)
The importance of glutathione, n acetyl cysteine and nitric oxide
Should we run out to get the Covid vaccine?
For CDC data mentioned in the episode, click here.
For more information on Dr. Edwards and his work, click here.
“Cholesterol is so important that your body will manufacture it if you don’t eat enough of it.” – Steve Welch
Steve is a NESTA certified Fitness Nutrition Coach and former publisher of the world renowned medical journal CHEST. His background in medical publishing provides him with insights into assessing medical and nutrition research, which he uses to educate others to improve their own health and fitness.
He is coauthor of the new book “The Ketogenic Key,” which is available in stores now.
In this episode we cover:
– Why we fear fat
– The history of low fat diets and why the data is skewed
– Why our bodies need fat to function
– The cholesterol conversation
– Carbohydrates, cholesterol, and inflammation
– How cutting extreme calories can backfire
– Individualizing the approach for YOU
This is such a fascinating interview that I hope you enjoy and learn from as much as I did!
Get ready! I have a BRAND NEW nutritional program starting August 17 called Feast 2 Fast. It was developed by Chelsea Blackbird (aka “The Christian Nutritionist”). You may remember Chelsea from a past podcast episode called “Busting Common Health and Diet Myths.”
This program helps people reach metabolic flexibility while also gaining freedom and flexibility in food choices. It truly is a place where “real food meets real life.”
You know me. You know I don’t promote diet plans. But I do promote supporting health – body, mind, and spirit. This group tackles all three! Registration for this 4 week program starts on August 3. You can learn more and sign up by clicking here.
If you love food, hate diets, and want to learn how to support your health goals in a balanced way, this program is for you. This program aims to develop metabolic flexibility and overall health while also supporting mental health and your relationship with food through daily encouragement.
The program includes:
An online participant portal to access all content
Over 100 recipes that are easy and delicious
A supportive community on Facebook
Access to ME an my support and encouragement whenever you need it
Short instructional videos on optimizing nutrition for OPTIMAL health
Daily spiritual encouragement and reminders to nourish your soul
The cost of the program is $179, and I assure you, it is WELL worth it. This program checks all the boxes I look for when I want to really get to the root of food and mood!
Targeted nutritional support can be a catalyst for whole body health. Through this program, you will learn how to become empowered with your nutritional choices and how to individualize your nutrition for your lifestyle and your health goals.
Oh – and did I mention the side effects of better sleep, clear skin, decreased cravings, and super-charging your body into fat-burning mode?
I can’t wait to get started with you on this journey! We are going to learn so much together. Sign up here.
I feel like I have ultimate credibility when it comes to sugar cravings. I battled them for most of my life. There are many factors at play there: gut dysbiosis, adrenal fatigue, low dopamine, and nutrient deficiencies, but one of the biggest hurdles is that I had a HORRIBLE relationship with food.
I was a chronic dieter. There were good foods, there were bad foods, and somewhere in that system of thinking I associated good food and bad food with Good Erin and Bad Erin. My food issues became intertwined with my value as a human.
While one of the best things I have ever done is address my gut health and nutrient deficiencies, I also have received so much healing from normalizing sugar.
If I want something sweet, I have it. When I allow myself the freedom to have whatever I want, nothing off limits, the appeal of the forbidden goes down. In fact, I’m better able to take a few bites of something and tell if it’s worth eating. Sometimes it is, and sometimes it isn’t.
Stress. We hear about it all the time. It’s in our daily vocabulary. We feel the weight of it constantly.
What if I told you that the food you consume is stressing your body out and making things worse?
It sounds crazy, right? When I think of stress, I think of a busy schedule, too many commitments, big life events or tragedies, etc. I don’t think of an internal response. However, the food you eat has a major impact on your stress hormone: cortisol.
Cortisol is the fight or flight hormone. The purpose of it is actually a good thing! It is supposed to protect your body during times of stress. Imagine living in the wild and a mountain lion is approaching. Cortisol shoots through your body through the adrenals (hello, adrenaline!) in order to increase glucose for energy to ward off the attacker. Your heart rate increases thanks to epinephrine and you’re able to store fat needed for the fight. After the mountain lion has been killed and the situation is resolved, your body returns back to its normal state. All is well.
Here’s the problem with our current diet. When we eat lots of sugar and refined or simple carbs, our blood sugar is frequently crashing, signaling to the body that we’re under attack and need an increase of cortisol. So glucose is increased and fat is stored. This is super taxing on the adrenals, because due to the carb-sugar cycle we are always in, our adrenal glands are ALWAYS shooting out extra cortisol, way more than was intended in human design. Our cells soon become resistant to cortisol. What does this lead to? Inflammation, a poor-functioning immune system, type 2 diabetes, fertility issues, inability to lose weight, cancer, thyroid problems, depression, chronic fatigue…the list goes on. Continue reading “Is What You’re Eating Stressing You Out?”→
Diets. I hate the D word. They started in high school. I went on my first antidepressant my sophomore year and gained 30 pounds in under two years. It was devastating and embarrassing. I used food to cope with unhealthy emotions. Once I could drive, I hopped in my 1990 baby blue Chevy Caprice and hit up Sonic happy hour for cheddar peppers and slushes. I stocked up on sour watermelon candy at Target and late night Whataburger taquitos. I never felt full, but I loved the dopamine high the food would give me. I knew food had a pull on me I couldn’t escape.
So I tried South Beach, the Zone, and finally, Atkins. The latter helped me lose the “Zoloft weight” and gave me new confidence. But restriction made me bitter. I developed PTSD from salads. I made the act of eating a moral decision – there are good foods and bad foods. Fattening and non. Healthy or not. And I let the shame of indulgence give me value, just as I allowed my size or the number on the tag of my jeans give me value. Continue reading “Why Diets Never Worked For Me”→