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Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Is Your Blood Sugar Out of Whack?

The more I learn about the body, the more I’m reminded that no matter what health concern someone is experiencing – low energy, cravings, emotional issues – the first thing to address is blood sugar imbalances. Do you ever feel shaky between meals? Reach for your 2nd cup of coffee after lunch? Feel like you want to take a nap after you eat? You are probably experiencing fluctuations in your blood sugar.

Blood sugar is the amount of glucose present in the blood at any given time. Glucose is the primary source of energy in our bodies; it allows us to make ATP, and if we don’t have that, we just don’t function well. It affects every process and every system in the body.

When blood sugar isn’t kept stable, it can hinder fat loss, negatively impact your hormones, create inflammation, and wreak a whole lot of additional havoc on your body!

One of the issues I’ve personally experienced is chronically low blood sugar or hypoglycemia. When you fluctuate between high and low, it’s considered reactive hypoglycemia which occurs a few hours after a meal. Have you ever eaten a high sugar dessert or a bag of crackers by itself? First you feel great and then you probably get shaky and maybe lightheaded – your blood glucose goes way up and then way down – not a good feeling! This then causes a surge in insulin. Some symptoms of low blood sugar include:

  • crave sweets
  • get irritable, agitated, upset, nervous, shaky, jittery, lightheaded, fatigued before meals
  • depend on coffee to get going in the morning or to keep going in the afternoon
  • after eating, fatigue is relieved
  • experience difficulty staying asleep

Conversely, when blood sugar is high, it can lead to insulin resistance. Insulin rises in response to a rise in glucose. When this becomes a chronic issue, eventually the insulin receptors become desensitized. This can then lead to higher glucose levels in the blood so it’s a vicious cycle! These are some of the symptoms of high blood sugar:

  • experience fatigue after meals
  • crave sweets during the day and after meals
  • have trouble losing weight
  • experience difficulty going to sleep

In addition to the symptoms listed above, a well-interpreted blood chemistry panel including markers such as glucose and lipids can be very useful.

If your blood sugar is out of whack, the big question is WHY? Perhaps the following list might give you some clues. Try these tips to help stabilize blood sugar:

  • Eat breakfast
  • Include high-quality protein with breakfast
  • Eat about every 3 hours if you tend to have low blood sugar
  • Eat low-glycemic foods
  • Avoid eating carbs by themselves - like bagels, fruit juice, crackers - include protein and fat to minimize the blood sugar spike
  • Avoid adrenal stimulants like coffee, alcohol, and concentrated sugars
  • Get an adequate amount of sleep
  • Eat a diet consisting mainly of vegetables, high quality protein, and healthy fats - in other words, stay away from processed, boxed foods!
  • Manage stress

When you balance your blood sugar, you should feel increased overall energy and function. If you currently experience any of the symptoms I listed above, try to implement some of the tips and let me know how it goes! When you need additional guidance, contact me to schedule a consultation.

Saturday Fun in the Park!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Sunday Fitness Mixer!

I'm participating in this Fitness Mixer that my friend Jenna Phillips from Mission Possible is putting together! Come get a great workout in and bring a friend!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Fruit Tart

My friend, colleague, and amazing massage therapist Marissa Workorski of Hand in Hand Wellness brought this delicious dessert to our latest IIN potluck. What a great way to use all the fresh fruits that are available to us in the summer! The directions are a bit long but the result is worth it, it's beautiful and tasty.

  • Nuts (I used almonds and cashews)
  • Seeds (I used pumpkin seeds)
  • Dried fruits (I used dates, cranberries, and apricots)
Directions for crust:
Place nuts and seeds in blender or food processor and process until small chunks (not quite powder)
Place dried fruits in blender or food processor and process until small pieces and sticky
Mix dry and sticky together, kneading until all the dry ingredients have been blended with the fruits.
Line platter with parchment paper and press fruit/nut mixture firmly to make flat, rounded pizza crust. Smooth and flatten with backside of spoon.

Lemon Curd:
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1/4 cup raw sugar or honey
  • 2/3 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp grated lemon zest
  • 2 tbsp butter
Directions for lemon curd:
Combine the eggs and sugar or honey in saucepan over medium heat, whisk for 2 minutes until sugar is dissolved. Add lemon juice, zest, and butter, and whisk for 5 minutes until it coats the back of a spoon without dripping. Let cool in the pan and transfer to container and cover and chill.

  • Strawberries, Mango, Peaches, Nectarines, Kiwi, Blueberries, Raspberries, etc
Directions for fruit:
Slice and spread in desired fashion over lemon curd.


  • 2/3 c. fresh squeezed orange juice
  • 1/3 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1/2 tsp orange zest
  • 1/2 cup raw sugar or honey
  • 2 1/2 tbsp arrowroot powder
Directions for glaze:
In a saucepan, combine all ingredients. Cook and stir over medium heat. Bring to a boil, and cook for 1 to 2 minutes, until thickened. Remove from heat, and add grated orange rind. Allow to cool, but not set up. Spoon over fruit. Chill for at least 2 hours, then cut into wedges and serve.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

It has been a few months since I posted here and it's about time to start again.... I will not be posting my daily food journal but will be adding different articles, recipes, and whatever else I come across that may be useful to my clients...

First, I'd like to share some strategies for surviving the holidays without gaining weight from Rachel Cosgrove, author of The Female Body Breakthrough which I've been reading and re-reading over the last week ... there are so many articles all over right now about what to do on Thanksgiving day but what about throughout the holiday season? As you all know, I'm a fan of 90% meals, or making 9 out of every 10 meals compliant whether that's following the Precision Nutrition rules or eating according to your Metabolic Type.

Rachel's suggestions:

"1. Think ahead the next 7 weeks through the holidays. What splurges should you absolutely plan on? We actually as a group pulled out a calendar and figured out that we had 43 days left to get through the holidays (as of Thursday last week). At 5 meals a day, that is 215 meals which means you have 21.5 meals over the next 7 weeks that you can splurge on and still see your body change. So over the holidays one of the strategies is instead of looking at a week at a time, look at the next 2 months and think ahead. We went through the calendar and put an X on each meal we knew we needed to plan a splurge. We put two X's on Thanksgiving and an X the day before and an X the day after. Then we put 8 X's for either each night of Hannukah or to use over Christmas eve and Christmas day since for most people 5 X's on Christmas day is not unheard of and having 3 on Christmas Eve wouldn't be out of the question. We put an X on one day in December as a baking day and we put an X on every Saturday night in December. This still left us with about 3 X's to use how we choose and we decided to keep them in our back pocket for those unexpected occasions that pop up over the holidays.

Bottom Line- You can enjoy every food you love, every experience you want to have and everything about the holidays and not completely blow it. Planning ahead is the key and having a strategy. Pull out your journal or calendar and put your X's in place now and commit to sticking to splurging where there is an X and otherwise eating clean, foods that make you feel good 90% of the next 7 weeks.

2. Most people go into black and white thinking, on or off, good or bad....or maybe this sounds familiar, "I may as well not even try and just start in January." DO NOT DO THIS! You will be sorry when you have an extra 5-10 pounds to drop in January. Instead plan ahead by using the above strategy and come out of the holidays feeling fabulous at your New Years Eve party!

3. Don't drop your workouts this time of year. The only reason you can have 21 splurges and still change your body is because you are consistent with your workouts and keeping your metabolism revving. Make a commitment to get to the gym at least twice a week and I would recommend getting it done early before anything else gets in the way. "

Friday, July 17, 2009

meal 1 - chocolate whey protein shake with a tbsp almond butter, strawberries

snack - string cheese

meal 2 - 1 cup lentils, 1 cup ground beef

meal 3 - lettuce, about a cup of peas, steamed chicken all topped with about 1 tbsp mustard

snack - apple

meal 4 - about 1/2 cup cottage cheese, 1/2 cup chocolate ice cream, 4 crackers with cheese

Thursday, July 16, 2009

meal 1 - 5:30am - protein shake with 1 scoop chocolate whey, 1 tbsp almond butter

meal 2 - 8:30am - 1/2 cup lentils, 1/2 cup ground beef (trader joe's organic grass fed deliciousness), 1 tsp mustard, iced coffee plain

meal 3 - 10:30am - 1 cup lentils, 1 cup ground beef, some guac = yum!

snack - string cheese

meal 4 - peas, chicken

meal 5 - lentils and ground beef again, 5 crackers with cheese, 1 beer

I was up for 20 hours today so I think there may have been a few other snacks but I already forgot! I ate well though.