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Integrative Health Coach Blog About Healthy Living Choices

Comfort Always: The Animal Factor

Posted by on Jan 20, 2014 in Cancer, Health Coaching, Lifestyle Medicine, Stress Management | 2 comments

Comfort-AlwaysMany of my clients work in high-pressure jobs full of relentless multi-tasking and never ending deadlines. Others are chronically ill and struggle to navigate their “new normal” or a worsening prognosis. In both instances, stress undermines their quality of life. This is why I frequently do stress inventories with clients to identify their current top stressors to determine which ones can be modified and a plan to do that. What I have found time and again is that some of the most powerful and sustainable de-stressing occurs with clients who are connected to animals. (more…)

Mindful Eating at Holiday Meals

Posted by on Nov 18, 2013 in Health Coaching, Lifestyle Medicine, Nutrition | 1 comment

Mindful EatingThanksgiving is a “big” meal shared with family and friends. It is preceded by days of sifting through old recipes, finding new ones, and making detailed grocery lists. Next comes shopping, layers of prep work and finally the coordinated cooking marathon to put it all together. While the finished product is filled with good food and equally good intentions, it can be easily derailed by a tendency to “overdo it.” Is there a way to change this discouraging eating habit? (more…)

Against the Grain: It Is Worse Than We Thought

Posted by on Oct 21, 2013 in General Health, Health Coaching, Nutrition | 1 comment

againt-the-grainGrain Brain, a new book by Dr. Pearlmutter caught my attention as it makes a direct connection between eating whole grains and brain disease. Up until now most conversations about gluten and grains in my coaching practice have centered on avoiding or decreasing glutens to control weight and decrease likelihood of developing diabetes later. (more…)

Is Your Sofa a Silent Killer?

Posted by on Sep 3, 2013 in Health Coaching, Lifestyle Medicine, Nutrition, Stress Management | 0 comments

SofaLast week was a very stressful for me. I found myself spending more time on our sofa as comfort seeking behavior. While parking myself on the sofa with food was easy, it didn’t reduce my anxiety, stress or improve my mood. (more…)

Decoding Sugar and Weight Control

Posted by on May 20, 2013 in Food Fight, General Health, Health Coaching, Nutrition | 3 comments

orange-juiceAll sugar is not the same. There are two kinds of sugar, glucose and fructose. Glucose is a primary fuel for the body. There are major differences in the way your body processes fructose and glucose. When you consume fructose even in whole fruits, you body packs on pounds at a much higher rate than if you just consumed glucose. When you eat fructose, your liver bears the major burden of breaking down the fructose. With glucose, the liver breaks down only 20%. Every cell in your body uses and can access glucose quickly after consumption. On the other hand, fructose is converted into free fatty acids, VLDL (the damaging form of cholesterol) and triglycerides, which is stored as fat. (more…)

Stress and Vitamin G

Posted by on Apr 22, 2013 in Health Coaching, Lifestyle Medicine, Stress Management | 12 comments

blog-mountain“Those who contemplate the beauty of earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts.” ~Rachel Carson

Although many studies have shown vitamin G beneficial for stress reduction, mental clarity and healing, you won’t find it at your health food store. Most likely your doctor won’t know what you are talking about if you ask him or her. In my client practice, stress reduction is often a top priority and yet most haven’t heard about vitamin G. Vitamin G is not a supplement you can purchase. So what is it? (more…)

Invisible Offenders in the Kitchen

Posted by on Mar 26, 2013 in Cancer, Food Fight, General Health | 3 comments

Kitchen Sink

The war to prevent cancer is fought on many fronts but rarely in the home environment. Personal environments are unknown territory that remains a mystery to most health care providers and their patients. Sadly, this suggests our home environment has no role in cancer prevention, an assumption that is untrue if you look at available information from cancer research and cancer advocacy organizations.

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Making Better Choices with an Aging Parent

Posted by on Feb 19, 2013 in General Health, Health Coaching | 5 comments

Rita O'SheaDavid’s expertise with aging parents helped me recognize what was important to my mom in her later years. About 18 months before she died, I made a conscious choice to put my personal issues with mom aside.  My game plan was I would accept her the way she was and try to see the world with her eyes rather than mine.  I asked more questions out of curiosity about choices she had made, her life history and how she was really doing.  Instead of attempting to talk her into something, I gave her choices and let her know whatever she decided I would support 100%.   I supported all her choices and let her know she could change her mind and I would support that change too.  I dropped my agenda and helped her get what she wanted done.  I found that we got along better and best of all I learned some things about mom I didn’t know. (more…)

Breast Cancer Coaching For Recovery

Posted by on Jan 27, 2013 in Cancer | 1 comment

You never see it coming.  I didn’t and that’s what my breast cancer clients tell me too.  Breast cancer is a diagnostic ambush that leaves you grasping for answers, while facing a series of hurdles ahead. My role as a survivor and coach is to bring compassion, understanding and a plan for a new normalcy.  I am a kindred soul on the breast cancer recovery team.   I know the medical story, and the personal story and I serve as a translator, and collaborator.

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Changing Your Physical Space

Posted by on Jan 3, 2013 in Health Coaching, Lifestyle Medicine | 6 comments

“If you think you can do a thing or think you can’t do a thing, you’re right.”
~ Henry Ford

I have spent most of my life surrounded by clutter.  Piles of unfiled receipts, financial statements, projects, articles, books, unused clothes, and kitchen appliances we barely use have occupied our living spaces.  For a long time, I had spent more time avoiding my clutter than considering there might be another way.   Avoidance is a self-directed brain skill.  If avoidance is your strategy, your brain does exactly what you tell it to do. It figures out how to avoid fixing the clutter. We have all kinds of messes we avoid because we tell ourselves there isn’t time, resources or energy to solve.

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