Breaking Down Inflammatory Foods – Episode 08

Breaking Down Inflammatory Foods – Episode 08

Breaking Down Inflammatory Foods – Episode 08
Author:Kristin Longacre

August 31, 2021

One quote that has stuck with me for months is:

“Many people are strangers to their own kitchen.”

In a world of go-go-go we live for quick and easy meals, usually at the sacrifice of our health. We rely on fast foods, processed foods, boxed foods, and meal kit deliveries. While these types of food all serve their purpose and there is for sure time and a place but when we rely on them 100% of the time we are hurting ourselves more than the convenience is worth.

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Food, Products & Movies Mentioned: 

Full Transcript

0:12
Hello, hello, welcome to be your best self help weekly casual conversations about taking health into your own hands. I’m your host Kristin Longacre. One quote that has stuck with me for months on end is that many people are strangers to their own kitchen. Do you feel like that’s true for you? In a world of gogogo we live for quick and easy meals.

Usually, it’s at the sacrifice for our own health though. We rely on fast foods, processed foods, box foods, meal delivery kits, don’t get me wrong. All of those serve a purpose and they’re for sure is a time and a place to enjoy them. But when we rely on them 100% of the time, we’re actually hurting ourselves weigh more than the convenience that it’s worth.

For starters, let’s look at fast food. We know it’s not good for us, let’s be honest. But the convenience and taste outweigh the effects it has on our health. If you haven’t seen a documentary supersize me take a break and watch it sometime.

Yeah, it’s old, but it’s still holds up in a lot of ways. Many of these aspects of certain fast food chains have gotten better over the years but there’s still not considered the health healthiest options. And what happens in that documentary still happens today. Just not in supersized form. For starters, fast food chains include way too many ingredients for one item.

Looking at chick fil a Did you know that a chick fil a chicken sandwich just the standard one that you would order off the menu contains over 60 ingredients that it doesn’t include topics that’s just the button in the chicken.

Don’t get me wrong, I know it takes a few ingredients to make a button. But that’s way too many ingredients for a piece of chicken that’s fried on a bun 60 ingredients.

Chances are if you were to look at fast foods on the outside a chicken sandwich might actually sound like a healthier option than a burger and fries. Unfortunately, even though it tastes delicious, it’s not even remotely healthy.

Fast foods and processed foods contain 10 to 30% of our daily salt and sugar or sugar intake. In one serving.

Yeah, one serving which means one hamburger or one serving of fries, or one chicken sandwich. By the end of a meal. It’s easy to have consumed close to if not more than 50% of your daily salt or sugar intake in one meal. That doesn’t include your breakfast or dinner that you haven’t eaten.

That’s why it tastes so good, right? I’m not here to really hate on fast food it comes into our house we enjoy it from time to time. But sometimes it makes you think twice if you take time to look at the ingredients and break it down what damage it’s doing to your body. In order to break it down, it’s important to look at what foods are considered inflammatory foods.

Last week, we talked a lot about gut health here on the podcast and inflammatory foods play a huge role in keeping your gut and check. Taking sugar and salt out of this. There are five inflammatory foods that we look at when we’re starting to look at somebody’s gut health.

That is gluten, eggs, soy, corn, and dairy. All of these five ingredients can result in inflamed gut, everyone has different triggers.

So what might not agree with your gut might actually be okay for somebody else. Many of these, like I said are standard in fast foods and processed foods.

Going back to that 60 ingredient chick fil a sandwich. Four out of five of these are somehow in that chicken sandwich. Corn is the only exception but that’s just because I don’t know all of the ingredient breakdowns for corn. However, chick fil a does list on its menu for allergens that gluten, eggs, soy and dairy are all in that chicken sandwich.

And again, we’re not talking about the topics just the bun and the chicken. This isn’t limited to fast food though they can also go to processed foods and meal delivery kits. I love the convenience of all of these but if you’re trying to prioritize your health, it’s time to stop and take a look at the ingredients you’re actually eating.

4:34
Part of prioritizing your health means healing from any issues you might be having. As we talked about last week, 90% of Americans have gut issues and many of them don’t even know it.

It doesn’t hurt to spend some time removing some of these inflammatory foods from your diet. The number one way to start that healing process is to hit the kitchen with Whole Foods.

In other words, those foods that have one ingredient such as fruits, fed Use whole grains and organic meats.

None of those are considered inflammatory foods. I’m not saying you can’t ever touch a piece of processed food, fast food meal delivery kits, etc. Again, they absolutely have a time and a place. But when you’re working on your health, they might need to take a backseat. changing your diet can be really, really overwhelming, especially when it comes to removing any of those five foods.

I get it, I’ve been there. So how do you start? My best advice is to start by getting creative in your own kitchen. This goes back to the quote that we talked about at the beginning of the episode, try something new instead of the normal recipes you make or maybe don’t make on a daily basis. Think about it this way. If you tried one new recipe each week, even if you only liked half of the recipes, you could have 26 new meals to choose from over a year.

That’s actually a lot when you consider you only need to make dinner seven nights a week, maybe even five. My second tip might sound a little bit ridiculous, but the gut health MD sent me on to a fun game in his book fiber field.

It’s a great book about eating plant based and Whole Foods. And I highly recommend it. If you are somebody who thinks he might have gut issues, I will make sure to link it in the show notes. But let’s talk about this game. He made a game out of how many vegetables you could fit into one meal, you basically get one point for each vegetable. If you’re competitive like me, it’s a great way to compete yourself. compete with yourself, have a little fun with your food and keep the inflammatory foods down. In case you’re wondering, my record is 12 I know you needed to know that bit of information.

My last challenge for you is that the next time you’re at the grocery store, see how much of your cart you can fill up on the perimeter of the store. Generally speaking the way grocery stores are laid out the less processed foods around the perimeter of the store like the fruits, vegetables, dairy meat, and yes, I realized dairy can fall into processed foods.

But in general, it’s on the perimeter and the more processed foods, the boxes, the Pop Tarts, the macaroni and cheese all are in the center of the store. So by shopping the perimeter, you’re actually getting less inflammatory food.

Again, give or take some dairy and more healthier options that are going to ultimately help you heal your gut. It’ll help you prioritize your health and it’ll help put you on the path to success. And you’re gonna feel better.

*Disclaimer: Some of these links may be an affiliate link, which simply means I may get a small commission if you purchase the product through this link.

ABOUT ME

Hey There, I’m Kristin! I have a strong passion for helping women make small changes in their everyday lives that add up to the healthy life they desire. Whether it’s a mom looking to find her confidence or a family who needs help making changes in the kitchen I believe every health goal can be accomplished.

What is really in fast food

Breaking Down Inflammatory Foods – Episode 08

Why Is Gut Health So Trendy? – Episode 07

Why Is Gut Health So Trendy? – Episode 07
Author:Kristin Longacre

August 24, 2021

Gut health is a newer trend out there, research for gut health really started between 2008 and 2012. At the time gluten-free was becoming a popular weight-loss trend, but it also began to open the eyes of researchers as they saw what was happening to those who were healing from diseases they didn’t know they had.

Today we will dig into gut health, why it’s trendy and how you can evaluate your own gut.

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Full Transcript

0:16
Hello, welcome to be your best self health checks weekly casual conversations about taking health into your own hands. I’m your host Kristin Longacre. If you know me, you know that I kind of have a passion for understanding about how what we eat affects our body, specifically how our gut reacts. I know I’m a little bit weird.

In the world we’re living in right now though, gut health is becoming a very popular theme. Many people are starting to realize the correlation between their immune system and how their body is reacting or consuming certain foods. For me, personally, it might sound a little bit odd, but my son’s got health journey really directed me on this path.

At age two and a half he was diagnosed with fructose malabsorption. Hmm, yeah, okay, I was there. That’s exactly how I felt going into it. Over a period of 18 months, we work to come up with the ideal diet for his specific body. Through that I realized how many people out there, including myself, were going about their daily lives with completely abnormal health that they just assumed was regular.

So why should we be talking more about it? I’m glad you asked.

Yeah, gut health is a newer trend out there. But it’s something that many people probably need to start jumping on the train for, because they probably have messed up gut health and not even realize it. research for gut health really started between 2008 and 2012.

At the time, gluten-free was becoming a popular weight-loss trend. But it also began to open the eyes of researchers as they saw what was happening to those were healing who were healing from diseases they didn’t even know they had.

I once heard gut health described as the queen of the castle is the gut. If she’s unhappy, she will take down the kingdom.

And in my last two years of living it and learning it, I’ve honestly never seen a better way to describe gut health. your gut is referred to as your second brain. It doesn’t tell you how to move or what to do. But it controls important parts of your body such as mood, digestion, immunity, and the list continues from there.

The more we learn about our gut throughout all of this research that’s continued over the last 10 to almost 15 years, the more important it becomes to our overall health.

Without question, the reason that gut health has become trendy in the last two years is that 70% of your immune system stems from your gut 70% no wonder that kingdom can be taken down so quickly by your gut.

Remember, the kingdom is your body. That’s not all though. 95% of your serotonin which is what regulates your anxiety, happiness, your mood, etc, is produced in your gut, when they say food can control your mood. It’s actually true like food really can decide how you’re going to react the rest of the day.

Do you see why I start to love all these connections? Having a gut that is off-track can actually trigger anxiety or depression. your gut, it does a lot. Quite possibly the most important piece though is that the lining of your gut is the barrier to the rest of your body.

If that barrier breaks down, it can lead to food allergies and intolerances, immune abnormalities and autoimmune diseases.

This is where leaky gut comes in. leaky gut is a gray area in the medical field. I am not a doctor, nor am I in the medical field. However, leaky gut is a term that gets thrown around a lot when somebody isn’t feeling right. And there isn’t an exact reason to what their problem is.

When we look at it from a holistic perspective, a leaky gut means your gut is inflamed, and it’s not absorbing nutrients properly. If you’re eating something as it makes its way into your mouth, which is the start of your gut and all the way through your body.

It’s your guts job to break down that food, absorb the proper nutrients and discard what’s not good for it. However, if your guts not functioning properly, that waste starts leaking into the rest of your body.

Therefore, that waste is never digested properly.

It may also prevent good nutrients from getting into your bloodstream. So let’s look at something like brain fog or your inability to focus. While you would think the issue is with your mind, it actually could be the way your body is handling food you’re eating or something going on with the environment around you.

Instead of the good nutrient Getting up to your brain to help your brain function properly. They quite possibly are getting blocked from getting there by other things that have snuck through your gut lining.

5:11
Therefore, your brain isn’t functioning right, and you suddenly develop this brain fog or lack of focus. Now, it’s not a problem. That’s the end of the world, believe it or not. leaky gut can actually be fixed most of the time. It is usually something as simple as diet, a medication you recently took or something in the environment around you.

Here’s the kicker 90% of Americans actually have leaky yet. Yeah, 90%. You heard that right.

The environment, the food we’re eating and stress levels that we live in our breeding grounds for gut problems. As a society, we’ve just started to figure this out over the last 10 to 15 years. But many of us aren’t quite willing to admit that the problems we’re having require us to change our diets. So let’s talk about the symptoms of leaky gut.

You ready to sound like a drug commercial symptoms of leaky gut could possibly include but are not limited to bloating, acid reflux, acne, eczema, poop issues, fatigue, brain fog, and the list continues. I mean, it it really does sound like a drug commercial when you consider what all could be caused by leaky gut. We’ll live in a world where we are on the hunt for quick fix to all of our medical and life problems.

So instead of getting to the actual root issue, we’re running towards medications to get fixes. Over time, these quick fixes are breaking down our bodies.

I am not anti medicine by any means. I absolutely believe there is a time and a place for medication. However, sometimes that quick fix for something like acid reflux could actually be doing more harm than good in the long run. So that brings us to the next question, how do you solve your gut problems without taking a medication?

For starters, research. Quite possibly This is the most important step to solving your gut problems. But it might also need to involve more than just yourself. As a health coach. I do help with this piece of it, but you might also need to bring in someone like your family doctor. Research is paying attention to your body and taking steps to learn more about your health. For example, bloodwork, food, journaling, sleep, blogs, etc. Well, awesome to start these on your own. definitely consider involving someone else, either your doctor or professional who can help you understand what you’re finding and what areas can use improvement and how to improve that then becomes the adjustment phase.

When it comes to gut health, more than likely will start with the food you’re eating or the environment that’s around you. Chances are something’s going to come up in your research. For example, you might notice that while your food journaling cheese is always resulting in your stomach being cramped up and bloated. Or you might notice that when you eat a lot of gluten, your mood drops really quickly.

Now, that doesn’t mean you can’t eat cheese or gluten for the rest of your life.

However, it means something about these foods is not agreeing with your gut at its current state. A lot of times the next step would be going through a longer elimination diet to see how your body reacts to a few weeks without those specific foods. Again, this is where it’s important to have a doctor or a professional involved when you’re eliminating or understanding how food works for you. Discuss the findings of your food journal with them and be honest, they can help you plan to eliminate and for how long to see what happens. elimination diets are quickly becoming my favorite thing to watch people go through.

Not only do they notice that one symptom might clear up but they actually begin to notice other things that are going on their body start to disappear as well.

For example, one person was dealing with severe stomach cramps but also had ongoing arthritis in the morning. After eliminating some inflammatory foods for three weeks to help with her cramping. Almost all of her arthritis symptoms disappeared in the morning.

9:19
They had assumed that arthritis was just part of their life for the rest of her life. But by eating the inflammatory foods, parts of her body were just swelling up which were triggering the arthritis.

Was the Arthritis gone No.

But by reducing the amount of inflammatory foods she was able to control the pain that came with it. I have experienced gut health firsthand with my four year old baby, his battle will forever and ever be ongoing.

However, we have spent two full years learning about his food triggers noticing how it affects him and working with him on healing from it. It’s by far one of the most frustrating things I’ve ever dealt with. However, The difference between a healthy and a sick B is night and day.

As I mentioned, it’s not an overnight process nor is gut health, something you should tackle alone. Definitely, definitely reach out to either your health provider, a health coach or someone to help start this process with you, and start figuring out how to get your gut back on track.

I’m always here if you have questions and feel free to drop us comments or notes in the podcast notes at podcast at best self health coaching calm.

As always, we’ll be back next Tuesday with more discussions and we’re gonna dig into more with inflammatory foods and some fast foods. Hope you all have a great week. Thanks for tuning in. Feel free to leave a review at iTunes or your favorite podcast app. Have a wonderful day.

 

 

ABOUT ME

Hey There, I’m Kristin! I have a strong passion for helping women make small changes in their everyday lives that add up to the healthy life they desire. Whether it’s a mom looking to find her confidence or a family who needs help making changes in the kitchen I believe every health goal can be accomplished.

Why Is Gut Health So Trendy

Breaking Down Inflammatory Foods – Episode 08

Why Is Sugar So Addicting? – Episode 05

Why Is Sugar So Addicting? – Episode 05
Author:Kristin Longacre

August 10, 2021

Do you know what the recommended daily sugar intake for a human is?

6tsp.

Line up 6tsp of sugar in a row and it probably looks gross right?

What if I told you most people in the US eat that by lunchtime, in fact, a recent estimate shows that American’s eat 23 tsp a day.

This week in the podcast we are going to take a look at how it affects us, where the sugar is coming from and how you can use this information to make adjustments to what comes in and out of your house.

Tell us in the comments below, what shocks you the most about this episode?

Full Transcript:

0:17
Weekly casual conversations about taking health into your own hands. I am your host Kristin Longacre.

In this episode, I’m going to start out with a pop quiz. Do you know what the recommended daily sugar intake is? I’ll give you a second 60s boots. Think about that lineup six teaspoons of sugar in a row, and it probably looks gross, right?

What if I told you that most people in the US eat that by lunchtime? Actually, a recent estimate shows that Americans eat 23 teaspoons of sugar a day. Let that sink in.

This week, we are going to take a look at how sugar affects us where the sugar is coming from and how you can use this information to make adjustments to what comes in and out of your house.

Before I get started, I want to give a disclaimer. We are not here to talk about natural sugars such as honey, fruits and even vegetables. Those sugars aren’t the reason that America has an obesity problem.

We are here to talk about added sugar, which these days is added into what seems like everything. So why is added sugar bad for you? It’s not terrible for you. However, the amount we’re consuming is where we’re running into problems.

We know that sugar rots your teeth. The dentist has been telling us this since we were little kids. But there are so many other aspects of our health that sugar affects more so than our teeth.

First things first, let’s talk for a minute about sugar and hormones. If you’re female, you are probably all too familiar with the ups and downs that come with hormones. Did you know that too much extra sugar can affect things even more.

For example, let’s take a look at sugar and PMS symptoms. Bringing in excess sugar causes inflammation in your body. In turn, inflammation can cause hormone imbalance. Therefore, when you are craving sweets, you are actually adding fuel to the fire with your PMS symptoms by consuming them.

If you’re curious to see how it affects you watch your hormones over the next few weeks and the up and down balance. Specifically keep an eye on how much sugar you’re bringing it with less added sugars. Are you feeling a little bit more in control? tying it in with hormones and inflammation. Too much sugar can cause other reactions in your body.

Do you ever notice more breakouts on your face a few days after enjoying a few too many sweets our bodies can take a bit to process sugars in may show up as inflammation on our skin and a form of acne. I get if you’re curious start keeping track of your sugar intake and the breakouts you’re seeing. Are they possibly related? Maybe acne isn’t so bad to control.

It’s not just hormones that sugar can play a part in nor is it just rotting your teeth. Sugar isn’t evil when consumed in low amounts. Our body actually uses it as fuel to give us energy. However, the excess sugar can cause the liver to freak out because it can’t handle the amount being sent its way our body doesn’t need a ton of extra sugar for more energy.

So it will take all that extra sugar and turn it into fat to store it. This is where the obesity problem begins. If consistently eating too much sugar continues time and time again. Our body continues to store it more and more as fat along with the higher obesity rates comes mothered many other conditions such as high blood pressure, type two diabetes and the list goes on.

So where’s all this added sugar hiding? You’re probably thinking, well, I don’t really eat a lot of sweets, so there’s no way I’m eating this much extra sugar. Chances are you’re used to hearing about the sugar in pop candy, juice, cereals, etc. But there are many other hidden sources that we really don’t realize we’re consuming that much sugar in.

Let’s start with bread. I’m not here to hate on bread. It’s delicious, but honestly it’s also extremely high in sugar. two slices of delicious white Wonder Bread are five grams of sugar which translates to 1.2 teaspoons of sugar. Therefore 1/6 of your daily recommended sugar can be coming from two pieces of breakfast toast That doesn’t include the jelly or whatever you’re putting on top, then suddenly, it sounds kind of gross.

5:08
Again, I’m not here to hate on bread. However, there is a reason so many people see success in weight loss when it’s removed from their diets. Sugar is the main reason for that. condiments can also be a huge source of sugar.

Take ketchup, for example, one serving of Heinz ketchup is one tablespoon. That serving contains one teaspoon of sugar, salad dressings, dipping sauces and pieces. Pizza sauces aren’t much better. Again, I’m not here to hate and I believe that we absolutely still be using condiments and sauces. But let’s use them in moderation if you’re enjoying them.

So how can you enjoy them without worrying about sugar? Well, I’m glad you asked. First things first, pay attention to the serving size. As a country, we have very little respect for serving sizes. Next time you enjoy ketchup or a salad dressing, flip the ball around and get a better idea of the recommended serving size. Don’t just eyeball it, measure it out.

Look how far off you are. Using this knowledge, take inventory of your sugar intake. Don’t be concerned about calories, fats, proteins, etc. Just look at sugar for a few days, you may be surprised at how much you’re consuming.

If you want to satisfy that sweet tooth. Try swapping out sweet treats for something else such as fruit. Instead of a brownie after dinner, which is probably extremely high in sugar. Have a bowl of strawberries that can satisfy a sweet tooth but are filled with natural sugars.

Not to mention a few vitamins and minerals. Another way to avoid sugar is to focus more on the whole foods in your day to day meals instead of processed foods or fast foods. You know vegetables, fruits, things that come from the earth. Chances are if they’re coming from a factory or a drive thru, there’s a good amount of sugar added to it.

I know you’re probably saying but sugar is so good. I get it. Sugar is actually addicting. Research shows that when you consume sugar, it triggers an opiate response in your brain, therefore sure actually becomes a reward for your brain. From there, you crave more sugar. Because it’s a reward, it begins a vicious cycle that’s really hard to break.

If nothing else, I hope this episode helps make you more aware of your daily sugar intake. While some have done it cutting sugar 100% from our daily lives is not necessarily easy or realistic. However, by taking a step back from how much sugar you’re eating, and avoiding more of the added sugars, you can gain a lot of control over your own body just with those changes.

I would love to know your thoughts on sugar and our daily lives.

ABOUT ME

Hey There, I’m Kristin! I have a strong passion for helping women make small changes in their everyday lives that add up to the healthy life they desire. Whether it’s a mom looking to find her confidence or a family who needs help making changes in the kitchen I believe every health goal can be accomplished.

Getting SMARTER With Your Health Goals - Pin

Breaking Down Inflammatory Foods – Episode 08

Increasing Your Vegetable Intake – Episode 04

Increasing Your Vegetable Intake – Episode 04
Author:Kristin Longacre

July 27, 2021

Today we’re going to talk about vegetables and why they are important to your health.

Next time you see greens powder advertised on Instagram, take a step back from what they are selling, save some money and grab a few vegetables instead. Chances are they have a little less sugar, no added chemicals, and well they’re a much healthier way to get your greens in.

As a society, we have pushed healthier and more vitamin-filled vegetables to the side in favor of convenience.

Let’s talk about why and how we can change that.

Topics Covered:

  • Why vegetables are important
  • What vegetables should you eat?
  • How many vegetables should you eat a day?
  • HOW do you eat that many vegetables a day?

Full Transcript:

Welcome to be your best self health chats, weekly casual conversations about taking health into your own hands. I am your host, Kristin Longacre. Hello. Hello. So Normally I am recording from my office back home.

Um, today we are on location and that means you may hear some nature in the background, some jet skis, and I’m not sure what else. So hopefully it’s a little quiet here until we get our little chat finished today.

We are going to talk about vegetables and why they’re important to your health. Yep. Those green beans and Brussels sprouts actually do mean something more than your parents just being mean to you. Insisting that you finish everything on your plate for dinner. Next time you see greens powder advertised on Instagram. Take a step back from what they’re selling. Save some money and grab a few vegetables. Instead. Trust me, your parents were right.

Chances are those greens have a lot of added sugar, some chemicals, and well vegetables are the healthier way to get your greens. Vegetables are something that the U S overall has gotten away from the standards required in schools are minimal and many kids have never touched a green bean in their life. It’s no one person’s fault has this society.

We have pushed the healthier and more vitamin-filled vegetables to the side in favor of convenience. I get it. It’s much, much easier to get a kid to eat a side of fries and call it a day. Instead of a bowl of green beans, I have nothing against potatoes. They’re delicious, especially when they’re fried in oil and covered in salt, but it’s time to expand our palette when it comes to vegetables. That leads us to the first question of the day.

What are the vegetables that we should focus on? Truly there isn’t a bad vegetable out there, but I want to be sure to start getting more color in our lives.

There are sweeter vegetables, such as corn peas or carrots to just the ones with your sugar, bad for you by any means, but too much of it can result in too much sugar elsewhere in your diet. Especially there are sweeter vegetables like corn peas or carrots, but don’t limit yourself to just the speed vegetables with the higher sugar content.

They are not bad for you by any means, but too much of it can result in too much sugar in your diet, especially if you are limiting sugar, anywhere else. If peas, corn and carrots are all you like, that’s a great place to start. There is no reason not to eat them. However, branching out into broccoli, spinach, cucumbers, and peppers of all colors is a great next step. All of these vital high-end vitamins filled with fiber and are a little bit lower on the sugar content.

The next question is how many vegetables should we be consuming a day? Now this is on the extreme side, but one UK study has shown that eating seven serving of vegetables a day along with the little bit of fruit can reduce mortality from all causes by 24%. Okay. That’s one study and it’s the extreme side of it.

The CDC recommends two to three cups of vegetables a day. This is a more realistic option, especially if you are not used to eating vegetables.

Now, the last piece we’re going to dive into today Is how do you get those vegetables in your diet? Believe it or not, it’s not as hard as it might seem. It takes a little bit of planning, but it can actually work out a lot better in the long run. If you take a few steps, as soon as you get your groceries, my first trick is, as soon as you get your vegetables home from a grocery store, wash them. And if you have time, get them cut up and prepped for the week. This way you have no excuse not to add them to your meal.

When it comes to breakfast, the easiest way to get vegetables in is mixed. Whatever you are enjoying in with some vegetables. So for example, if you’re eating some eggs, throw some spinach in, maybe some onions, some peppers, even that half a cup of spinach can shrivel up really quickly when it’s cooked into eggs, that you won’t even notice it.

Smoothies are another way that makes it easy to sneak in a ton of vegetables. You can easily blend a cup of spinach or kale, add in some cauliflower crumble, and not even know that they’re in there because the other fruit will cover up the taste.

When it comes to lunch or dinner, I have an easy rule of thumb. Fill half of your plate with vegetables. Then fill the rest with your meal. A go-to lunch for me is half a plate of mixed raw vegetables, such as sweet peppers, carrots, broccoli, sugar, snap, peas, cucumbers, along with two tablespoons of hummus to dip it in. Plus a protein such as some lunch meat or grilled chicken.

Again, going back to cutting up those vegetables. When you’re organizing groceries, there’s little to no excuse to making an easy lunch like this.

When it comes to dinner, there are plenty of options on a lazy day. I’ll repeat my lunch, but I love a good vegetable steamer from the frozen section at the grocery store. They’re an easy way to throw a side of vegetables with your dinner.

Keep an eye on the other ingredients that may be in those such as any added. I prefer to stick with the ones that are just vegetables and add any seasonings to it. After they’re cooked, cooking with vegetables mixed into your dinner is always a good option, such as tacos throw in some peppers or onions with chicken grilled mushrooms on top as a favorite of my husband’s, or even chopped up peppers, jalapenos, and onions mixed into a hamburger. When you grill it, simple things like that add so much flavor and you get the vitamins and nutrients that come with the vegetables. 

Zucchini makes a great substitute. For many things, chances are, you’ve heard of zoodles or zucchini in place of pasta. We’ve bought them already zoodles before, but you can also do them yourself at home. Last summer, we discovered zucchini boats, where you take the seeds out of the zucchini and fill the rest up with something else such as taco meat or shredded chicken with cheese on top. Squashes are great for this too.

These are just simple ideas, but a quick Pinterest or Google search will give you thousands of ideas on how to incorporate vegetables into your life. My best advice is don’t overcomplicate it.

Hop on over to our show notes and share your favorite way to incorporate vegetables into your meals. To see all of the show notes from today, or share your thoughts, please visit podcasts best health coaching.com. Make sure to subscribe to our podcast so you can get our weekly chats directly on your favorite app. We’ll see you back here next Tuesday.

ABOUT ME

Hey There, I’m Kristin! I have a strong passion for helping women make small changes in their everyday lives that add up to the healthy life they desire. Whether it’s a mom looking to find her confidence or a family who needs help making changes in the kitchen I believe every health goal can be accomplished.

Getting SMARTER With Your Health Goals - Pin

Breaking Down Inflammatory Foods – Episode 08

Getting SMARTER With Your Health Goals – Episode 03 – Be Your Best Self Health Chats

Getting SMARTER With Your Health Goals – Episode 03 – Be Your Best Self Health Chats
Author:Kristin Longacre

July 20, 2021

Let’s talk about goals, specifically setting health goals. I’m only about a year into the health coaching world, but I am almost 8 years into the health world from the other side. As someone who has lost weight, gained weight, lost weight, gained weight, and finally started to LEARN what her body approves of and doesn’t approve of my goals have been all over the place.

Maybe you’re just getting started with your healthy lifestyle, maybe you’ve been in it for a while, or maybe you are trying to climb out of the diet culture that social media tends to throw us into.

Regardless, goal setting is part of your journey. I will be honest that if you are serious about changing your habits simply saying “I want to eat better” is not the greatest of goals. We’re going to dig much deeper than that in today’s podcast.

Why is setting goals in your health so important?

 

Topics Covered:

  • What is a goal?
  • What makes a goal SMART?
  • What is a SMARTER Goal?
  • How to adapt your goals to be SMARTER!

Full Transcript:

Welcome to Be Your Best Self Health Chats, weekly casual conversations about taking health into your own hands. I am your host, Kristin Longacre.

This week we are going to talk about goals, specifically setting health goals. I’m only about a year into the health coaching world, but I am almost 8 years into the health world from the other side. As someone who has lost weight, gained weight, lost weight, gained weight, and finally started to LEARN what her body approves of and doesn’t approve of my goals have been all over the place.

Maybe you’re just getting started with your healthy lifestyle, maybe you’ve been in it for a while, or maybe you are trying to climb out of the diet culture that social media tends to throw us into.

Regardless, goal setting is part of your journey. I will be honest that if you are serious about changing your habits simply saying “I want to eat better” is not the greatest of goals. We’re going to dig much deeper than that in today’s podcast.

Why is setting goals in your health so important?

It’s easy to say “I want to lose 10lbs by x date” but we live in a world filled with temptations. Fast food on every corner, dueling coffee shops in cities, cheap junk food, and expensive whole food. When you are looking to change your health for the better, it is not an easy or overnight process to begin with.

Without setting actual goals for your health it’s easy to make those excuses, oh my morning coffee is still good, small fries here and there, etc. Yet so often I see people end up disappointed that they couldn’t hit that number on the scale.

According to the Oxford dictionary, a goal is defined as “the object of a person’s ambition or effort; an aim or desired result.”

Therefore, setting goals within your health can help you get to that desired result. Especially if these goals are set in a way that will set you up for success.

Let’s get into more detail about how to set goals.

Maybe you’ve heard of SMART goals before, Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Time-Based.

We’re going to take that a step further. One of my mentors from the Health Mindset Coaches Certification, Kasey Jo, introduced me to smartER Goals, which takes SMART goals a step further… Specific, Measurable, Additive, Rewarding, Timely, Efficacy, Relative.

Let’s break each step down a little more.

Specific. It’s important to get specific with your goals. By getting specific you can come up with a better plan to reach your end result.

Measurable. By making your goals measurable you are able to see your progress as you go. One thing I have found time and time again is that seeing the progress being made is what helps get through the bad days. I can’t tell you how many days I’ve wanted to give up on my goals until I’ve looked back and seen how far I’ve come.

Additive. This is where we veer off of the original SMART goals. Instead of attainable we’re going to look at what can be added or improved to your lifestyle that will help you with this goal. In my style of nutrition coaching, I don’t like being restrictive and this is one of those cases. What are you adding in to help you achieve your goal? Instead of saying “I’m not going to get the fancy coffee,” look at adding in hard-boiled eggs or some veggie bites to go along with it. See? We don’t restrict but we ADD something that helps with your long-term goal.

Rewarding. Goals should be rewarding and have PERSONAL meaning and be valuable to you, not someone else… YOU! If it doesn’t have meaning to you, you are less likely to actually focus on it, therefore you are less likely to hit it.

Timely. Goals may or may not always have a long-term timeline. However, to achieve whatever your long-term goals are, you can always set little timelines to go along with them. For example, if your ultimate goal is to spend the next year focusing on your health, break it down into little, more manageable chunks and look at your goals month to month or maybe a quarter to quarter.

Such as “this month I’m going to focus on adding more vegetables into my lunch, then next month I will focus on exercising 3x a week.” You are giving yourself a clear-cut timeline to achieve those goals.

Efficacy. By definition, efficacy means ‘the ability to produce the long term result.’ In the case of your goals, they should be setting you up for long-term success. In other words, your goals should be realistic and something you believe that you can achieve.

Relative. Look at your goals from where you are right now and where you want to go. Does it make sense for your lifestyle and the plans you have coming up?

Going back to the original goal I suggested of “I want to lose 10lbs” let’s take that and turn it into a SMARTER goal. Instead of just saying “my goal is to lose 10lbs”, a SMARTER goal would look like “My goal is to lose 10lbs over the next 3 months to help my clothes fit better by improving the quality of food I consume and exercising 4x a week ”

Getting specific is losing the 10lbs. The weight is measurable. Exercise is being added in. The reward is clothing fitting better. Our timeline is 3 months. Efficacy is building the food and exercise habits for long-term success. It’s relative because it’s a realistic timeline with realistic expectations. 

Notice how the goal suddenly sounds so much more achievable? Instead of someone setting no timeline on when they want that 10lbs gone, they now have a schedule, a realistic timeline, a reason, and more.

Does it make sense to use SMARTER Goals in every situation? Probably not. However, when you are getting ready to make big adjustments to the habits in your life for your health it is a very helpful tool to use. Truthfully, the way you set your goals can be the difference between success in achieving them and never actually having your end result see the light of day.

Your challenge this week is to take some time and set a SMARTER goal. How does it make you feel? Does it feel more achievable?

To see all of the notes from today or share any thoughts you have, please visit podcast.bestselfhealthcoaching.com.

Make sure to subscribe to our podcast so you can get our weekly chats directly on your favorite app. We will see you back here next Tuesday. 

 

ABOUT ME

Hey There, I’m Kristin! I have a strong passion for helping women make small changes in their everyday lives that add up to the healthy life they desire. Whether it’s a mom looking to find her confidence or a family who needs help making changes in the kitchen I believe every health goal can be accomplished.

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Making Your Health a Priority – Episode 02 – Be Your Best Self Health Chats

Making Your Health a Priority – Episode 02 – Be Your Best Self Health Chats
Author:Kristin Longacre

July 13, 2021

This week we are diving into a topic that so many of us know is important, but we often avoid thinking about… making health a priority. 

Chances are if you are here, you already do make your health some sort of priority. Maybe you’re starting to think a little more about making your health a priority. Either way, we have a lot to talk about in today’s podcast. 

One of the biggest things that can get in the way of us making health a priority is time.

We are all busy. I’ve often heard the phrase “don’t busy my busy” in reference to competing with eachother as to who is busier. Let’s just all accept that we live in a world of “go go go” and that at the end of the day, we are all busy. 

This busy schedule is what prevents so many of us from taking care of our health until it’s too late. When it comes to your health, taking care of yourself might require a little extra time upfront but in the long run, as you take the time to build the habits the extra energy will be worth the time. 

We dig into all of this and more on this week’s episode of Be Your Best Self Health Chats. Let’s talk about making your health a priority. 

Topics Covered: 

Full Transcript: 

First things first, figure out what you need to do to make your health a priority. I’m not talking about what crash course diet you’re going to do, but really the steps you need to take to start feeling like the best version of you. 

A few ideas are, but not limited to, drinking x amount of water a day, working out 3 times a week, organizing your food for the week, making a grocery list, eating so many vegetables. This list might seem overwhelming but if you start with just one of these it can make a big difference in the long run. As you continue down your health journey, you will be able to add more and more. 

The next step here is to sit down with your calendar and start looking at your week. 

Start with exercise. What days are realistic on your calendar that you know you can fit in some form of movement. 

Pick a time that you know you’ll have time to get to a gym if needed, change your clothes if needed, and get back to work or life. 

The goal here is to give yourself enough time to get everything done without feeling stressed or rushed. I realize that is hard to do, but if you have a 30-minute workout planned, give yourself 60. Trust me, you will thank me later!

Make these times realistic and ones you know you will not cancel. If you are a night owl and know you will not get up to workout at 4 am, do not block your calendar off at 4 am. Some people thrive by working out in the morning, other’s found that working out is the best way for them to wind down at night. 

By adding these times to your calendar you now are blocking out time that belongs to YOU and only YOU! 

The next thing to look at is when you’re planning to grocery shop and plan your food for the week. Personally, I like doing it all on the same day. 

I will be the first to admit that even though I feel safer at a grocery store now, I still rely on InstaCart for my groceries. To me, it is worth saving 2-3 hours a week by taking 15 minutes to order my groceries and tip someone else to do the shopping.  

As I unpack the groceries the veggies and fruit get washed and cut up so they are ready for the week. 

If it’s a really good week, the rest of the food is packed into the fridge grouped together with how it will be cooked. This takes one more step out of thinking in the evening when it comes time to make dinners. 

Again, put it on your calendar so you can block off time to MAKE YOUR HEALTH A PRIORITY. It is easy to rely on fast food or eating out when you don’t feel like ordering or getting the groceries organized. The extra few minutes you put in as you put your groceries away can add up big time throughout the week. 

One more thing to put on your calendar. 

Your bedtime. 

Okay, I know roll with me on this one. It might seem a little odd but you can be working out 6 days a week, tracking your macros to a t, drinking a gallon of water a day but if you aren’t getting enough sleep your body probably will still rebel against you. 

Sleep is the most important part of our health. We have forgotten what rest is living in a society where it seems to make you look strong if you burn the midnight oil, staying up all night working, taking care of kids, etc.

Now don’t get me wrong, if you have kids that hate sleep, I understand why you don’t get a lot of sleep. However, this is going to be even more important to block out time for. 

When your sleep is lacking, your nutrition can fall off, it makes it easier to skip the gym and you might find yourself chugging more coffee than water. 

All of these will prevent you from prioritizing your health. Sleep is the number one lifestyle factor that can reduce the risk of chronic disease by 50%. 

So yea, it’s pretty important. However, let’s go back to that bedtime. 

How much sleep should you get? I hate to give you the answer “it depends” but honestly, “it depends”. 

At a minimum, you should be getting 6 hours of sleep a night. Some people need their full 8 hours of sleep while others are okay with 6-7 hours and feel a little off if they get 8-10 hours. 

How do you get better sleep? This is where your bedtime and that calendar appointment come in. 

With devices around our house and phones glued to our hands, we are preventing ourselves from getting quality sleep. 

Take your calendar and write out your bedtime, say 10 pm. Then write down at 8 pm to start turning off the TVs around the house. Maybe start dimming some lights and by 9 pm turn off the screen on your phone. 

Don’t worry if this seems impossible, as I am talking through this I am reminding myself that I need to take my own advice. It is a habit we need to build over time. It will not change in one night. 

You can put your calendar away now, but let’s pick up a notebook really quickly. We have two more exercises to start making our health a priority. 

First things first, tracking your water. If you hung out with us last week you heard all of my tips and tricks for drinking more water. I truly believe it is the ONE thing you can do if you want to start focusing on your health but don’t want to do all of these other steps we talked about. 

I won’t go into that since we talked about it last week, but all I will say is start writing down the number of ozs you drink a day. You don’t have to track all day long but keep a tally of how many bottles you drink in your head. At the end of the day, write it down and compare day over a day how consistent you are. 

Next thing we need to write down. 

What you eat, when you eat, how you eat, and how your body responds. I could talk for hours about food journaling and the things you can learn from it. However, we’ll start simple. 

Every time you eat, write down what you ate. You don’t have to give exact measurements it can be as simple as “a salad with green goddess dressing, avocado and almond slices on top” 

Then write down how you ate it… was it on a plate, were you standing up over the sink while you did dishes, sitting at your desk, etc. These details might not seem important now, but over time when you look back at trends and your relationship with food, they will be important. 

Note what time you ate your meal. Again, this might not seem like an important detail now but someday when you are working deeper on your relationship with food and your body this will be a key factor in determining how your body is being fueled. 

Lastly, write down how you reacted 30 minutes to 1 hour later. Did you totally crash out and want to take a nap in the afternoon? Were you energized and felt like you could run laps around your office building? 

All of these steps are places to start with your health. The key is planning and making time for yourself. There are 100 other things that can come up that can prevent that workout, bedtime, etc. By prioritizing your health, you are going to be able to build up the habits needed in order to have the energy to do those 100 other things throughout the rest of your day 

Your assignment this week is to pick ONE new thing to do for your health. We will chat again next Tuesday! 

ABOUT ME

Hey There, I’m Kristin! I have a strong passion for helping women make small changes in their everyday lives that add up to the healthy life they desire. Whether it’s a mom looking to find her confidence or a family who needs help making changes in the kitchen I believe every health goal can be accomplished.

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