Simply beautiful...

Simply beautiful...

Friday, September 30, 2011

Taking your Cholesterol into your Own Hands

In the past few weeks, my husband went to see our family doctor to get his blood drawn. We are both believers in being your own health advocate, and part of that responsibility includes regularly checking to see where your cholesterol, blood sugar and blood pressure are at.

Jeremy's health results came back great and we are thankful. However, reading his results landed us in some basic nutrition conversations like: how to lower LDL's or "bad" cholesterol and how to increase HDL's or "good" cholesterol; what is "total" cholesterol; what are triglycerides, etc.? These questions represent to me what so many people do not know and therefore do not know to care about.

Jeremy came across this article days after our conversation and it contains a good starting point for the conversation about what fats/oils we consume and what they do to our health - help or harm it. Please take a moment to read this article and educate yourself. If you think you already know the answers, it never hurts to brush up on the facts and re-motivate how you make your food choices.

Look for more info on this topic to follow!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Practicing our Memory Verse

Here is a little glimpse at Harper practicing her memory verse: Matthew 19:19
It is so much fun to see what a two year old is capable of... and what comes out of their mouth! Harper has gotten better at it since this video, BUT still never says "Matthew" and goes straight to "nineteen, nineteen, nineteen...". This video captures just a small part of what I love about being a mom... teaching them and seeing every growing moment.

We have now moved on to Philippians 4:13. I'm sure we'll get some cute quotes out of that one too.

Monday, September 12, 2011

My Personal Approach to Eating: Intuitive Eating

When talking about nutrition, it is impossible for me to deviate from the motto that "everything is ok in moderation". If you have talked about nutrition with me, you've probably heard me say this. From my experience, however, most people have an ambiguous picture of what 'moderation' really looks like in regards to food. With disordered eating and food obsessions in my past, many have asked me how I managed to break away from these dangerous and unsuccessful mentalities and plant myself squarely in the camp of "Moderation". The answer for me has been, Intuitive Eating:

Intuitive eating is an approach that teaches you how to create a healthy relationship with your food, mind, and body--where you ultimately become the expert of your own body. You learn how to distinguish between physical and emotional feelings, and gain a sense of body wisdom. It's also a process of making peace with food---so that you no longer have constant "food worry" thoughts. It's knowing that your health and your worth as a person do not change, because you ate a food that you had labeled as "bad" or "fattening”. 

The underlying premise of Intuitive Eating is that you will learn to respond to your inner body cues, because you were born with all the wisdom you need for eating intuitively. On the surface, this may sound simplistic, but it is rather complex. This inner wisdom is often clouded by years of dieting and food myths that abound in the culture. For example, “Eat when you're hungry and stop when you're full” may sound like basic common sense, but when you have a history of chronic dieting or of following rigid “healthy” rules about eating, it can be quite difficult. To be able to ultimately return to your inborn Intuitive Eater, a number of things need to be in place—most importantly, the ability to trust yourself!

This approach to food is explained in detail in a book I am currently reading, "Intuitive Eating" by Evelyn Tribole, MS, RD and Elyse Resch, MS, RD, FADA. Unfortunately, I had to stumble upon this definition through trial and error, my dietetic education, and good council. Even though I eventually came to this philosophy, a Dietician I was fortunate to know gave me this definition of normal eating that helped free me of the "dieting mentality" and steer me toward intuitive eating, long before I knew it had a term:

Definition of “Normal” Eating

Normal eating is being able to eat when you are hungry and continue eating until you are satisfied.

It is being able to choose food you like and eat it and truly get enough of it--not just stop eating because you think you should.

Normal eating is being able to use some moderate constraint on your food selection to get the right food, but not being so restrictive that you miss out on pleasurable foods.

Normal eating is giving yourself permission to eat sometimes because you are happy, sad or bored, or just because it feels good.

Normal eating is three meals a day, or it can be choosing to munch along the way.

It is leaving some cookies on the plate because you know you can have some again tomorrow or it is eating more now because they taste so wonderful when they are fresh.

Normal eating is overeating at times: feeling stuffed and uncomfortable. It is also under-eating at times and wishing you had more.

Normal eating is trusting your body to make up for your mistakes in eating.

Normal eating takes some of your time and attention, but keeps its place as only one important area of your life.

In short, normal eating is:

Flexible and varied, in response to your emotions, your schedule, your hunger and your proximity to food.

Source: Adapted from How to Get Your Kid to Eat… But not too much (pp 69-70) by Ellyn Satter

One's approach to eating is their own and it is complex. It is my wish that everyone could feel as free from dieting and self-judgement as I do... now. My story and journey to this point has been long and has been a miracle. Intuitive eating has been my food revelation and freedom.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Turning into Little Friends

This is a pretty regular occurrence between Harper and Bentley these days... Oh how this laughter is life-giving to Jeremy and I!

As of recently, Bentley and Harper have a turned a small, but monumental corner. They have become little friends! They have always liked each other - but more in the "I notice you are sort of fun and always around" kind of way. Now, it seems to have clicked that they can be buddies, play and have secrets together (like when they hide in Harper's princess tent and laugh endlessly back and forth - Jeremy and I have no idea what's so funny).
Harper has been highly interested in feeding Bentley recently... she is learning she has to be quick with this boy's food!
Much of this has naturally come about due to Bentley's emerging personality and his growing abilities to get around, play and interact. I have said it before and I will again: Bentley LOVES Harper. He looks up to her and absolutely lights up when she comes around. No one makes him laugh as much (sorry dad) and no one can distract him as well (like when I'm making his food). The novelty at this stage is that the feeling has become more and more mutual: Harper LOVES Bentley. She always asks where he is if he isn't in plain view, she can't wait to wake him up first thing in the morning, and she is ever so sweetly concerned for his happiness. I absolutely love hearing her greet him, "Hi Bent-eeee"!
Our house is full of so much joy because of these two little people... We are so thankful Jesus.