Habits for the New Year and Beyond – #4 Drink a Green Drink Every Single Day

Happy New Year’s Eve!  Are you getting ready to party?! Staying in?! Or sleeping, perhaps?  Have you come up with your New Year’s resolutions yet or not coming up with them at all?  I have mine ready for the first time in many years!

Hope you’ve enjoyed, Habit #1Habit #2 and Habit #3 to adopt for the New Year and Beyond….

On to the next one…

Habit #4 – Drink a Green Drink Every Single Day…

Consuming green drinks is the best way to get greens in your diet, provide your body a rich source of chlorophyl on a daily basis, and ultimately is one of the key actions you can take to keep your body in an alkaline state to avoid disease.

Recently I was asked about my opinion on green juicing vs. blending and if I thought one was better than the other. I think they are both important in one’s quest for wellness and vitality. I drink both types of green drinks for different reasons. I drink juice to deliver as many nutrients to my body as possible at once and I drink green smoothies for the beneficial fiber. As long as you chew your green drinks your body will be able to digest and receive the benefits. Don’t just slam down a smoothie or juice – you need that chewing action for digestive enzymes to do their magic.

With that said, drinking green drinks is simple…

It can be small like a wheatgrass shot….

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A little more diverse like a fresh green juice -

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Or it can be a green smoothie the size of your head!

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You decide.  Easy right?

Make your 2012 green every single day!…No excuses!

Cheers!

Food Babe

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Habits for the New Year and Beyond – #3 Fast Every Single Day

It’s almost the New Year – only a couple of more days to get your resolutions ready…So you’re drinking lemon water with cayenne pepper every morning (Habit #1) and eating less refined sugar (Habit #2)…. now what?

How about fasting everyday?  Ut oh – I just heard a record screech …

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What? Fast everyday?!  That’s insanity, you might be thinking. But it’s not – especially when you are only fasting for half the day and most of the time you are sleeping.

Habit #3 – Fast Every Single Day  - At least 12 hours from the time you eat your last meal until the time you “break” the “fast” with breakfast.

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Adopting this habit can be so rewarding, restorative to your health, ultimate youth and beauty!

After reading several studies and chapters on detoxification from Dr. Gabriel Cousens and Dr. Alenjandro Junger – I now understand it takes at least 8 hours for your body to completely digest it’s meals from the day.  If you add in another 4 hours to that time without introducing more food to digest, the body actually goes into detoxification mode and has more time to remove dead and dying cells from the body.  During this “idle” time, the body also stimulates the development and regeneration of new cells. “Aging occurs when we have more cells die than are being produced.”

Allowing your body sufficient time every single day to digest, eliminate dying cells and develop new cells is a habit that will get you closer to drinking straight out of the fountain of youth!

More Incredible Benefits of “Intermittent” Fasting - 

  1. Improved Fat Burning - When you fast for 12 hours, your body has to use up stored glucose for fuel, burning excess fat off your body.
  2. The Brain Can Fight Stress Better – 12-hour fasts give the brain a chance to fight the chemical byproducts of stress.  They also help the mind to re-focus and improve memory and sensory perception. Also, short fasts promote the production of beta-hydroxybutyrate, which is a protective brain chemical that can make you less sensitive to excitotoxins like MSG.
  3. Promotes Heart Health – 12-hour fasts lower the body temperature, the blood pressure, and the heart rate and increase your good cholesterol.

Following this habit is extremely easy for me and can be easy for you too – I try to keep my dinner time somewhere between 7pm and 8pm, go to sleep around 11pm, then wake up early to work out and then I “break the fast” at or about 8:30am or 9am.  Finding the right time frames might be different for you based on your schedule – but if you are eating lots of whole non-processed foods this habit should be sustainable for life.

One of the most amazing things I immediately noticed after I adopted this habit was that I woke up with more energy and was better rested. If you’ve ever gone to bed with a full stomach, you know what I mean!

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Here’s to breaking the fast and waking up feeling lighter, more rested and re-engerized in the New Year and Beyond!

Food Babe

P.S. Got questions or comments? – I’d love to hear what you have to say here or on my Facebook Fan Page!

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Habits for the New Year and Beyond – #2 Develop a Distaste for Refined Sugar

I hope you enjoyed the first habit to start in the new year and beyond – I am imagining lemons being squeezed all over the world on January 1st morning.

However, you don’t need to wait until then – go out, buy some lemons and get going already! Life is short. You can experience wellness now!

On to Habit #2….

#2 Develop a Distaste for Refined Sugar

Asking you to eliminate every type of “sugar” from your diet is just crazy – any person trying to do this will fail in the long run. The key here is to still include sugar in your diet but get it in forms that your body can easily assimilate and sources that also provide nutrients, minerals and vitamins your body will use. Avoiding man-made sugars made from cane, beet and corn but still enjoying naturally occurring sugar in moderation is one of the keys to ultimate balance in life.

The problem with eating refined sugar from cane, corn or beets vs. other sources of  sugar, is that refined sugar is acid forming in the body because it has been chemically stripped of its minerals. The natural minerals in whole food are important for our bodies ability to process nutrients in food and to ultimately keep our bodies alkaline. Remember – a body in an alkaline state is primed to avoid disease and a myriad of other aliments.

So how do you develop a distaste for refined sugar?

Step 1 – Don’t buy, consume or keep products in your house with the following ingredients in them:

barley malt, beet sugar, brown sugar, buttered syrup, caramel, carob syrup, corn syrup, corn-syrup solids, dextran. dextrose, diastase, diastatic malt, ethyl maltol, fructose, glucose, glucose solids, high-fructose corn syrup, invert sugar, lactose, malt syrup, maltodextrin, maltose, mannitol, malitol, raw sugar, refiner’s syrup, sorbitol, sorghum syrup. sucrose, turbinado sugar, yellow sugar

This doesn’t mean you can replace these sugars with artificial sweeteners like aspartame, saccharin, and sucralose. Those are off limits too! They are just as bad for the body and even worse because some of them have been proven to be carcinogenic.  (Note:  If you are diabetic, stevia and xylitol are your best and safest options.)

Step 2 – Continuously train your palate for natural sweetness….

Before you decide on a dessert or something sweet to eat – think about the natural options you have available that will satisfy your sweet tooth – The satisfaction you will get from natural and unaltered foods will go far beyond their processed counterparts. Overtime, your distaste for refined sugar will come naturally and it will become innate. I am a living example in this change of mindset – my friends and family who know me understand this very well watching me grow into who I am today.  My mother can’t stand the look I make when I find out something has refined sugar or other chemicals in it – she said if I don’t stop making this face – my face will permanently start to look like a frown. (BTW Mom – I’m trying to work on this… ) Nonetheless – this might happen to you if you develop this habit in the new year – be warned!

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Here are some satisfying trades I make when I crave something sweet -

When I crave chocolate – I go for a piece of a Righteously Raw Bar that is comprised of 90% raw cacao and sweetened with goji berries and agave nectar. These chocolate peppermint patties made with honey are just fantastic too!

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When I crave something fruity – I eat a couple of “sulfur dioxide” free dried organic fruits mixed – like apricots, prunes, cherries, golden berries, dates, goji berries and figs mixed with coconut. Dried coconut for some reason has a natural sweetness to it – but has less than one gram of sugar per serving.  Sometimes, I drink cranberry or fruity herbal teas. Making a quick apple cobbler with just apples, cinnamon, oats and a little sprinkle of maple syrup in a ramekin also does the trick.

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When I crave something chewy, warm and comforting – I make cookies made with Food Babe’s Sugar Blend or coconut palm sugar. Also – I like to make warm brown rice pudding with unsweetened almond milk with a little honey or maple syrup.

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When I want some ice cream or something cold – I eat Luna and Larry’s coconut ice-cream or a bowl of frozen grapes.

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When I crave something salty and sweet – I make kettle corn with stevia or eat pieces of sprouted wheat pretzels dipped in raw cacao chocolate.

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Get the gist? See how easy that is?

If you develop this habit and practice it on a regular basis, you’ll be less likely to go overboard when presented and tempted with refined sugar desserts. Even more, you’ll naturally eat less sugar in the long run because your body is getting real nutrition from the food that hasn’t been chemically altered. Eventually…you’ll get that distaste for refined sugar and your desire for ultimate nutrition will become intuitive. What a wonderful habit to develop and keep for life, no?

Ahhh…I can hear your response now when someone asks you if you want that double stuffed oreo – “that’s just a little too sweet for me, no thanks!”

Anybody have other swaps they’d like to share? I’d love to here them! Leave a comment here or visit my Facebook Fan Page and share your inspiration!

Want more info and ideas on sugar?

Here’s to enjoying the sweet life all year long!!

Food Babe

P.S. Next Up – The best restorative thing you can do for your body in the New Year and for the rest of your life!

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Habits for the New Year and Beyond – #1 Drink Lemon Water

The new year is just around the corner – a time where a lot of people make resolutions to get healthier and lose weight… The gyms get CRAZY, wellness books jump to the top of best seller lists, and people get radical with their diets. A lot of us start doing all sorts of things we don’t intend on doing for the rest of our lives. This is where the problem lies with new year’s resolutions.

Instead of doing something just because it’s the new year – why not take it a step further and develop a healthy habit for the rest of your life? This might seem crazy and idealistic considering the rate of people that fall off the wagon come March, but it’s really not.  Especially since your health should be your number one priority for the rest of your life. Period.

For the next few days – I will share some habits that are really worth developing this year and strategies that will hopefully help you stick to them beyond this year’s resolutions.

Here’s the first one…

#1 Drink Warm Lemon Water and Cayenne Pepper first thing in the morning on an empty stomach.

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How does one successfully do this every single day?

Every night I fill my electric tea pot with filtered water, place one lemon on the counter from the fridge, along with the cayenne pepper bottle and a cup filled half way with water. As soon as I get up in the morning, I put on my robe on and walk into the kitchen to turn the electric kettle on. I then go into the bathroom and by the time I finish putting in my contact lenses and splash my face with water to wake up – the electric kettle has finished warming up my water. I then pour the water in the glass half full with room temperature water, squeeze one half of the lemon on top, sprinkle with cayenne and drink.

I usually drink this mixture with a straw, so my teeth aren’t exposed to the acid and I gulp down at least 15 ounces. Followed by another 8 ounces of water later before I eat or drink anything else. I’ve done this every morning for last 5 years. I even bring lemons with me when I am on vacation or when I am not sleeping in my own house. I just throw a few lemons right into my luggage – it’s too easy not to do…

Adopting this daily habit has amazing health benefits. Imagine getting sick less, feeling lighter, having regular eliminations, clearer skin, more energy and having a boost in your metabolism leading to weight loss over time…

Doing this ritual every morning provides a super stimulant to the liver, your main detoxing organ in the body. Your liver will release uric acid and create bile to safely eliminate environmental and lifestyle toxins that would otherwise be trapped in your digestive system longer. Remember keeping your liver and digestive system clean and in optimal condition will help your body prevent diseases like cancer in the future. Combining cayenne with lemon increases the detoxing effect and raises the temperature of your body increasing your metabolism.

Drinking this combination will cleanse your body every single day safely and naturally. I plan to do it for the rest of my life. Join me and watch your vitality increase!

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A few more tips about lemons –

  • Store your organic lemons in the fridge – they will last longer because they do not contain fungicide like conventional lemons. I take one lemon out of the fridge each night, because lemon at room temperature is easier to juice.
  • Remember not to squeeze your lemon directly into boiling water, you will destroy the live enzymes in the lemon. This is why I use half of water at room temperature and half hot water.
  • Using a stainless steel lemon juicer will allow you to get most of the juice from the lemon and is much easier on your hands too. You can get one off the Food Babe Shop here.

Want more motivation? Check out these articles on the additional benefits of drinking lemon water -

Who’s already adopted this habit? I’d love to know! Leave a comment here or visit my Facebook Fan Page and share your story!

When life gives you lemons, make lemon water with cayenne. Duh.

:)

Food Babe

P.S. Check out 4 other habits that will change your life!

Habit #2Habit #3, Habit #4 and Habit #5….