Home

Painful Truth?

Posted on

Today I am sharing a fantastic blog by Denise Shroka Sanger from “How to Stay Fit Over 50” that discusses times from yesterday (gotta love those years!) and excuses of today.

I really encourage you to be inspired, even though the truth may sting a bit.  Oh, and you should go check out this blog site.  Really you should.  I have listed the link below.

0DAD9CE53333C57782F29546D22A5C1B

If You Are Going To Make Excuses, Don’t Start An Exercise Program

by on APRIL 11, 2013

Okay – I will admit it.  I have a pet peeve about people who make excuses for ANYTHING but more so when it effects your health as in diet and an exercise program.  Being born at a time when mom still stayed at home and dad worked, we didn’t just get anything we wanted.  If we wanted something, we worked for it because bottom line, there wasn’t any extra money.  You figured it out and you made it happen.   We had a roof over our heads, food in our bellies and dad saved enough money to go on vacation one time a year and vacation for many families at the time was just not possible.  It is the same thing with exercise.  I myself can come up with A LIST OF EXCUSES but I don’t.  I make the time and just do it and when I’ve finished I feel wonderful.

Granted growing up when we did (those of us in our 50′s, near our 50′s or over our 50′s), we tend to view the world just a little bit different.  We walked to and from school, came home changed out of our “school” clothes into our “play clothes” and after homework was done, outside we went.  In for dinner then back outside but had to have our butts in the door or at least the yard by the time the street lights came on.   TV had 3 stations originally and we watched what our parents watched.  Personally, I remember playing outside until the last possible minute before coming in the house.  We didn’t have 500+ stations, computers, IPads, XBoxes, streaming video, video games, and everything else that keeps us sitting in the house on the couch these days.

I think because we do tend to view the world through the eyes we grew up with, we don’t take things for granted.  If you want something, you work your butt off to get it.  I started working when I was 12 cutting grass in the neighborhood.  Why? I wanted a new bike and yes I got that bike by saving my money.  Was it easy?  No it was not but boy was it worth it when I got to ride my new yellow 10 speed bike :)

It’s the same way with fitness. You must make the choice to select healthy foods when you are in the grocery store or at the restaurant.  You must make the time to workout. Yes, we are all busy with different aspects of our lives but if you truly want to be fit, get up and do something.  Tied up after work?  How about getting up just 30 minutes earlier in the morning?  Watching the kids or grandkids?  Take them to the park and play WITH them – don’t sit on the bench and watch them and worse yet? Don’t sit on the couch and watch TV for 3 hours with them – get up, get out and move.

Work is too busy?  Seriously?  Making money for someone else is more important than your health?  TAKE your lunch and go out for a walk.  Working through lunch is not a good thing for so many reasons with your health being at the top of the list. I know how that goes because I used to do it.  I used to put the company I worked for ahead of my family and my health and where did it get me? Working 60+ hours a week, working Saturday’s, eating lunch at my desk and overweight, grumpy and not spending enough time with my kids.   That 4% raise I got? So not worth the time I traded away from MY life, MY family and MY kids and now I’m self employed and will NEVER go back to the way it was and that was just a short 5 years ago. (Ask me how I did it – that’s a whole other topic but when you want it, you work for it until you get it.)

Bottom line is if YOU don’t make the time to put your health and fitness at the top of the list as a priority, no one will do it for you. How many more excuses do you have?

Stop Making Excuses Stop Making Excuses

No for candy, yes for super food!

Posted on

Have you ever heard of a jujube?  I always thought jujubes were only candy.  Not so!

Jujubes-Box-Small

Last week I tasted the most delicious jujube tea at our local farmers market and received a little health-history lesson about this very special super food.  Jujubes are a bit larger than a walnut, a beautiful brownish-reddish color and felt very light and soft in my hands.

20087299211151_2

The jujube originated in China where they have been cultivated for more than 4,000 years and where there are over 400 cultivars. The plants traveled beyond Asia centuries ago and today are grown to some extent in Russia, northern Africa, southern Europe, the Middle East and the southwestern United States.  Some jujube trees grow up to 40 feet tall in Florida, but are smaller in size in California.

jujube-fruit1

The benefits of jujube the super food

Jujube contains high levels of protein, carbohydrates, fat, carotene, vitamin C, B, P, and minerals like calcium, iron and phosphorus. Below you will find some benefits of jujube.

    1. Decrease in seborrheic keratosis

Vitamin C present in jujubes is an antioxidant, that participates in the physiological oxygen reduction of the body and lowers the production of seborrheic keratosis by preventing the chronic melanin sedimentation in the body.

    1. Liver protection is another benefit of jujube

The fat, protein and sugar contained in jujubes protect the liver. These nutrients stimulate liver to synthesize protein, thus increasing the amount of albumin and red protein, controlling the ratio of globulin and albumin, preventing transfusions and reducing the level of serum alanine aminotransferase.

    1. Many will be glad to know that hair loss prevention is among the benefits of jujube

Jujube has the function of nourishing spleen and stomach. There is an old saying in China goes like this “Good spleen, good skin”. With radiant skin, the hair can have a sound shelter. So eat more jujubes can prevent hair loss and help you to grow glossy hair.

    1. Nourish stomach and brain

In fact, jujube is used in Chinese medicine to nourishing spleen and stomach. In case of irritating substances in prescription medications, jujubes are equipped to protect the spleen and stomach. Jujube is rich in protein, carbohydrate, organic acids and fat, which produces the tonic effect for the brain. Jujube cake with flour and jujubes is very delicious and moreover it can improve the functioning of the brain and stomach.

    1. Nourish the blood and provides vital energy

As a matter of fact, rich amount of vitamins in jujube is one of the most important benefits of jujube which is advantageous for capillary. Take 20 jujubes, brown sugar (30 grams) and 1 egg; make it with water stew. You should take this mix every day. It is beneficial for women’s recuperation after childbirth.

  1. Sleep promotion

As it has already been said, jujube nourishes the blood and spleen, but it also has a soothing effect. Take 1000 grams of jujubes, wash them, eliminate the nuclear, then smash and add water to boil on slow fire. After that, filter the juice and mix honey (500 grams). Mix into the paste with heating, reserve in bottles. Take 15 ml for two times a day. The mix continuously served will prevent and cure insomnia.

Additionally, jujube is important in calcium supplement, anti-diarrhea and emission control prevention. But, jujube is not appropriate for people with constipation for the rich content of carbohydrate.

images

The jujube tea I sampled was delicious.  It reminded me almost of a cinnamon-raisin type of tea, but satisfyingly rich.

I am sharing this very special recipe with you below.  The making of this tea certainly is a process, but well worth the time involved.

Ginger jujube tea is normally served hot with pine nuts. Ginger has a soothing effect on stomach and sore muscles and jujubes alleviate stress.

This Korean tea is dark in color and has strong flavors of spicy ginger and sweet dried jujubes because it was cooked in simmering water for a long time. A fast way to make ginger tea is to use a pressure cooker.

When it is cold outside, this spicy hot drink will warm your body and even heart.

Korean Ginger Jujube Cinnamon Tea

Yields: about 16 cups
Total time: 50 min

Ingredients

    • 40 dried jujubes, Korean dates
    • 2 oz ginger (55g)
    • 3 oz packed brown sugar (85g)
    • 0.5 oz cinnamon sticks (14g)
    • 3 liters drinking water

Korean ginger jujube tea 생강 대추차

Instructions

Preparation Wash ginger and dried jujubes. Peel off ginger and cut into thin slices.

Brew Put ginger slices, dried jujubes, cinnamon sticks, and 3 liters of water in the pressure cooker. Cover and cook under pressure for 10 minutes over medium high heat. Then reduce the heat to very low and cook for another 10 minutes. Release pressure and add in brown sugar and without cover, simmer for another 5 minutes, or until sufficiently infused.

Serve Drain and serve with a few pine nuts in the tea and honey or brown sugar on the side.

Korean ginger jujube tea 생강 대추차

Serve with pine nuts.

Korean ginger jujube tea 생강 대추차

If you do not own a pressure cooker, this process can be accomplished (as per our local farmers market vendor) by slow-simmering for several hours.  Honey and brown sugar truly is optional, as the jujubes have their own sweet, unique flavor.

* * * * *

What a neat little super food, don’t you think?

Happy Monday,

Wendy

What is your passion?

Posted on

149

My oldest son stopped by to see me over the weekend.  Of course, I had let him know that I had some homemade vegetable soup, for which he was so ready for after having the flu this past week. I do not get to see my kids as much as I would like now that they are grown, living on their own and doing their own “stuff.”  It means the world to me to have time with my handsome sons, especially to see their smiles, hear their laughs, feel their hugs and smell their smells.  Today I fell in love with his underarm deodorant when we hugged!  (Smelled divine!)

My youngest son recently shared an adventurous time he had at Lake Nacimiento with some friends and a  random question he was asked that he initially had a hard time answering because he just did not know the answer.  “Dude…what is your passion in life?”  It took him three days pondering over the depth of such a simple question to find the answer.

~

How many of us know our passion in life?  Have YOU tapped into your passion in life?

~

I think the best way to know the passions we have in life, the things that make us feel alive, are those we can remember from childhood that we engaged in.  If you take the time to remember those years, what did you most love, do and were drawn to?  As a child we were more fearless and without reservations in what we loved to do and be about.  This is a source. Compared with other people I know, I feel I do live this way more often than not, but certainly now would like to be more involved with those passions that are all mine for me.  Work and school certainly consume my life more now than ever before and I really notice feeling a bit off when I am not taking time to enjoy the passions in my life that allow me to just be me.

Whether we can make our passion our occupation or not, I feel it is important to tap into passions as hobbies, not just dreams without legs, and to experience a flavor or color of our passions each and every day for a full and happy life.  Passions do not necessarily equal money.  (But if so, save for those passions!)  For example, when I was a child I loved living on the edge, dangerously, adventurously and without limit or worry.  This past summer I experienced the excitement of simply riding on a “really gynormous” bus for free to and from our local street fair on the 4th of July.  I always wondered what riding a bus that size would be like.  The sway around corners, the vast windows and length of this traveling Twinkie just left me in awe.  I was both afraid (what if we crashed on the freeway without wearing seat belts?) and excited (no one could see in the windows from the outside) and enjoyed this passion just for me.  But, what made the experience even better was sharing it with someone I loved and it literally cost me nothing but a choice.  Simple decisions or pricey choices.  What is worth our passions?

hiking-colorado

Some things that truly make me feel alive and touch my soul, much like literature does, include: making someone smile or easing the discomfort of an animal; playing ball with my dog, reading, writing, classical music and swimming, especially swimming in warm water at night; playing Scrabble and dressing/creating paper dolls; finding neat rocks and shells during a hike or walk on the beach; growing an organic garden and cooking; preparing a delicious meal and watching faces savor what I have cooked; laughing, and laughing hard, from the gut, with tears pouring down my face.  I could just go on and on.  I also love coloring with crayons and playing hopscotch, things I really also loved as a young girl.

25 superman comics

(My brothers all loved comic books as kids!  One brother has made HIS PASSION HIS OCCUPATION as a comic colorist!)

* * * * *

Taking a few minutes to tap into your passions and to explore the reasons behind those passions is well worth a spot on the calendar!

So this week, in addition to eating healthy, drinking water and engaging in exercise, I hope we all can tap into a new habit: exploring those things we were most passionate about during our childhood.  Let’s nourish our spirits in addition to our physical bodies.

Have fun,

Wendy

Super Bowl 2013- Friday Treat

Posted on Updated on

So, who is your team?  Ravens or the 49ers?

Image

Whether you enjoy football or not, there is a good chance you will be hosting or attending a Super Bowl party this weekend.  The fun part of Super Bowl parties is all the delicious (fattening!) variety of foods and beverages.  My mouth is already watering thinking about it!

If you love spinach, artichokes, cheese and hot, here is an amazing low-calorie traditional side dish most people enjoy that you may want to bring or make for your Super Bowl party.

During your Super Bowl party, Keep Choosing Consistency in your healthy eating,

Wendy

Hot Spinach and Artichoke Dip

Bring this hot spinach and artichoke dip to your next football party, no one will know it’s light!

This is easy to prepare ahead of time, then throw it in the oven when you are ready to eat. Serve this with Pretzel Crisps or pita chips, but baked chips would also be great.  This dip is also delicious with carrot sticks!

Servings: 15 • Serving Size: 1/4 cup •
Calories: 73.3 • Fat: 4.4 g • Carb: 3.4 g • Fiber: 0.9 g • Protein: 5.2 g • Sugar: 0.6 g
Sodium: 244.7 g
Ingredients:
Directions:
Preheat oven to 375°.In a small food processor, coarsely chop the artichoke hearts with the garlic and shallots.Combine all the ingredients in a medium bowl. Place in an oven-proof dish and bake at 375° for 20-25 minutes, until hot and cheese is melted. Serve right away.

Can be made one day in advance and stored in the refrigerator before baking. Makes about 3 3/4 cups.