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Positivity

Every action we take is a matter of choice. We choose our attitude, good or bad. We choose to either be reactive or proactive to life circumstances.

Choosing positivity is always going to healthier than choosing negativity.

By making a choice to be negative, you will be taking what is on the surface, the easy route. The irony is, that easy path often leads to more misery.

A healthy lifestyle comes from positivity, it comes from a healthy attitude.

Make the right choices with a positive attitude and enjoy your life.

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Tips to Beat Bloating

It’s been said that a flat belly is the evidence of fitness. That is entirely possible. Being lean and defined will definitely show up in the belly. It’s a good feeling to look down and like the shape of your abdomen. It’s also disheartening when you have worked hard to look great, but your abdomen is distended, and you feel miserable. Listed below are some tips from AFPA, the American Fitness Professionals & Associates, to stop bloating so that you can more easily enjoy the fruits of your labor.

Common Causes of Bloating

1-Swallowing too much air while drinking or chewing gum.

2-Eating too much or too quickly

3-Abdominal adhesions due to surgery

4-Bacteria that produce gas when they break down food in your digestive system

5-Intestinal disorders like irritable bowel syndrome, inflammatory bowel disease, Crohn’s disease, Leaky Gut Syndrome and small intestinal bacteria overgrowth

6-Undiagnosed stomach infections

7-Fluid retention due to a high-salt diet, diabetes or kidney failure

8-PMS or pregnancy

9-A regular smoking habit

10-Gallstones or liver disease

11-A diet high in fibrous foods (especially if it’s a new change)

12-Consuming carbonated beverages

Possible Remedies

1-Eat smaller portions for every meal and chew your food thoroughly

2-Rule out food allergies and intolerances

3-Follow a diet that is low in carbohydrates and allows 0 grams of added sugar. The body holds onto water to dilute sugar and sugar also causes inflammation which causes fluid retention.

4-Avoid carbonated beverages

5-Follow a diet that is high in soluble fiber

6-Eat probiotic rich foods such as yogurt and sauerkraut

7-Avoid salty foods and added salt at the table

8-Don’t chew gum

9-Keep a food diary so you can look back and see what you have eaten when you’re bloated.

Sometimes chronic bloating can be a sign of numerous health conditions. If these tips don’t help your bloating, see your doctor. If your bloating is paired with symptoms like unexplained weight loss, a build up of fluid in the abdomen, blood in your stools or severe abdominal pain, go to the doctor very soon. Pay attention to your body, it’s the only place that you have to live. 😉

Sugar Free Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

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First, who does not like a good cookie? How about a tasty cookie that you can eat that is also not a threat to your waist line? That is unless you eat and entire batch, and maybe not even then…

I have heard it said that sugar free cookie, brownie and cake recipes do not translate well tasty snacks. Well, I beg to differ on this reason for a few reasons. First, I would never post a recipe that I do not enjoy. Next, I find that the sugar alcohol Erythitol which is sold under the brand name Swerve makes awesome desserts. While Swerve is about 60% as sweet as refined sugar, I find this to be a good thing as I actually find the sweetness of sugar to be rather sickening for me since I have been totally sugar free for well over a year now. What I love about desserts and treats made with Swerve is I can enjoy a cookie, brownie or slice of cake while never worrying about the sugar cravings which would come later if they had contained it. My blood sugar and insulin levels do not get out of whack and I find it much easier to use moderation when eating sweet treats made with Swerve.

This recipe makes 8 gooey, chewy, and delicious cookies:

Per cookie: 145 calories, 5g carbs, 11.5g fat, 2.75g fiber and 5.6g protein

  • 2 tbsp melted butter
  • 2 tbsp Unsweetened natural peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup Brown Swerve or Swerve granulated
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup almond flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup sugar free chocolate chips
  1. Preheat oven to 350*F.
  2. In a medium bowl mix melted butter, peanut butter, Swerve, and egg until very smooth, set aside.
  3. In a separate bowl, mix almond flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt until well combined.
  4. Add flour mixture to butter mixture and mix until combined.
  5. Add chocolate chips to combined mixture and stir until just incorporated.
  6. Roll dough into 8 large balls and place on parchment lined baking sheet.
  7. Bake for about 15 minutes or until browning around the edges. Allow cookies to cool completely before digging in.

 

How To Lose Weight

Most people want to lose weight.  There are Countries where this is not true but in a large part of the world, we are too heavy.  While body fat percentage is the true measure of how fat we are, we love to see that number on the scale go down.

Go to the Calorie Counter Pro on the Home Page of this blog and enter your information and you will be given the number of calories that you should eat to lose either 1 or 2 pounds per week or to maintain your weight or to gain.  Once you have this information, use it.  If that was easy for everyone, few would be overweight.  Overeating is associated with cravings and most, or all, cravings are caused by eating sugar.  If you have trouble believing that, stop eating it for a week and watch your cravings begin to disappear.

Once you have decided to commit to your calorie budget, look ahead and plan your meals.  If you know that there are saboteurs at work, go prepared with good food that you like and plenty of healthy snacks. Don’t allow yourself to be hungry for more than a few minutes.  If you do, you will feel justified to eat whatever you find.

Don’t take sugar or any other “trigger foods” into your periphery.  Don’t lie to yourself and say that those cookies are “for the kids”.  They don’t need them either.  Instead, make sure that you have food that you really enjoy, maybe something that you won’t always buy for yourself.  Go ahead, if it’s a healthy food, buy it. No matter what it costs, it’s cheaper than health care to “fix” problems caused by a bad diet.  I spring for watermelon in the Winter sometimes to fulfill my carbohydrate requirement.  It’s expensive and I love it. I feel good when I eat it, in no way deprived.  It’s sweet but doesn’t cause cravings like cookies and other sugar laden desserts.

I prefer David’s Way of eating because it works and I have plenty to eat. I have absolutely no cravings and never feel deprived.  I am at a good body fat percentage and have energy to spare. I work a high stress, full time job and have domestic responsibilities that most people my age don’t have.  I am 62 and I am a power lifter. A year ago, I could only squat 35#, to my dismay.  Now I can squat 125#. I can deadlift 145#. Yes, I know, it’s not cool to tell your numbers, but I really don’t care.  The truth is that David’s Way is making me strong and healthy and I want to tell the world. My goal is to squat 210#.

With your doctor’s permission, get active.  Find an activity that you enjoy and do it religiously.  You can never out-exercise a bad diet, but exercise will tone your body and give you a more positive mental state. A good mental state is beneficial to weight loss.  You won’t be trying to self medicate your depression with food if you don’t feel depressed.  There are circumstances where exercise is simply not enough to alleviate depression but talk to your doctor and you will most likely discover that even in those cases, exercise will most likely help the medication do it’s job if you need medicine.

Search for ways to decrease the stress in your life.  If you have less stress, you will have more energy to devote to being healthy. Don’t waste precious time and energy focusing on negative things that you have the ability to remove from your life.

The most important part of weight management is perseverance. Don’t quit. You will have good days and bad days. You will do your program perfectly sometimes and go way off track others.  Over time, if you don’t quit, your program will become your normal and then you have a new, healthy lifestyle.  Lifestyle is your victory.  Once it becomes a lifestyle, the anxiety and pressure to see that scale plummet lessens because you know that you will reach your goal.

We are always here for you.  Soon we will also begin private consultation, but the blog will always be free.  Join us. Visit often. We reply to comments and questions. 😉

Symptoms of Stress and Tips to Reduce It

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The picture above I took from on the road in my semi out somewhere in south western Kansas. The tranquility of the open road is great for easing a stressful mind. At David’s Way, our approach to wellness is so much more than weight loss alone, as we know there are other elements that need addressed for true healthy living. Physical fitness helps us in losing weight and stress reduction. Stress reduction helps us in losing weight as our bodies produce less of the stress hormone Cortisol. Weight loss helps us in getting more physically fit and helps to reduce the stress which comes from being obese. All these factors are tied into a lifestyle and are interwoven together. David’s Way is not a temporary diet or a short term solution, it is a lifestyle we live.

Symptoms of Stress

Physical Symptoms:  Muscular tension, Headaches, Insomnia, Twitching eyelid, Fatigue, Backaches, Neck/Shoulder pain, Digestive disorders, Teeth grinding, Changes in eating/sleep patterns, Sweaty palms

Emotional Symptoms:  Anxiety, Frequent crying, Irritability, Frustration, Depression, Worrying, Nervousness, Moodiness, Anger, Self doubt, Resentment

Mental Symptoms:  Short concentration, Forgetfulness, Lethargy, Pessimism, Low productivity, Confusion

Social Symptoms:  Loneliness, Nagging, Withdrawal from social contact, Isolation, Yelling at others, Reduced sex drive

Tips for Reducing Stress

  • Learn to say “no.” Do not over commit. Delegate work at home and work.
  • Organize your time. Use a daily planner. Prioritize your tasks. Make a list and a realistic timetable. Check off tasks as they are completed. This gives you a sense of control of overwhelming demands and reduces anxiety.
  • Be physically active. Big muscle activities, such as strength training or even walking, are the best for relieving tension.
  • Develop a positive attitude. Surround yourself with positive quotes, soothing music, and affirming people.
  • Relax or meditate. Schedule regular massages, use guided imagery tapes or just take ten minutes for quiet reflection time in a park.
  • Get enough sleep. Small problems can seem overwhelming when you are tired.
  • Eat properly. Be sure to eat a diet high in protein and low in carbs. Do not eat refined sugar or processed foods. Limit your intake of alcohol and caffeine.
  • To err is human. Do not treat a mistake as a catastrophe. Ask yourself what will be the worst thing that will happen.
  • Work at making friends and being a friend. Close relationships do not just happen. Compliment three people today. Send notes to those who did a good job.
  • Accept yourself. Appreciate your talents and your limitations. Everyone has them.
  • Laugh. Look at the irony of a difficult situation. Watch movies and plays and read stories that are humorous.
  • Take three deep breaths.
  • Forgive. Holding onto grudges only causes you more stress and pain.

 

 

Low Carb Bacon Cheeseburger Casserole

Nutritional Info

Servings 12

Calories 404

Protein 31

Carbs 3.7

Fat 28

2 # ground beef

2 large cloves garlic

1/2 t. Onion powder

1 # “no sugar bacon”, cooked and chopped

8 eggs

1 can tomato paste

1 cup heavy cream

1/2 t. Salt

1/4 t. Ground black pepper

12 oz. Grated cheddar cheese, divided

Brown beef with garlic and onion powder

Drain excess grease and spread beef on bottom of 9×13 inch casserole pan

Stir bacon into beef

Whisk eggs, tomato paste, heavy cream,salt and pepper til combined

Stir in 8 oz. Cheese

Pour this mixture over beef and bacon

Top with remaining cheese

Bake at 350 for 30-35 min. or until brown on top.

De-Stress and Live a Full Life

My friends, besides being a health and fitness author, I am also a professional trucker. The picture above was the frozen landscape of southwestern Kansas this morning. Despite the bitterly cold wind, it was a beautiful morning which I wanted to share with you. I snapped this picture just a few miles east of Dodge City, Kansas. Yes, the wild west home of Marshall Matt Dillon, the rowdy cowtown people refer to when they say they are “getting the hell out of Dodge”.

I love this job for the solitude of being on the open road with no one to disturb my inner peace, although I do run teams with another driver. When one is driving, the other driver will be in the sleeper berth getting their much needed rest as we hammer down on the black top for a 935 mile trip on each outing, 3 nights per week.

One thing I love about the open road is it gives me time when I am behind the wheel of my big rig to work out topics for my blog. As I wind my way across the Kansas prairie during the middle of bright star lit nights, my mind seeks out and easily finds pure tranquility, the starlit sky brings back very fond memories of days past when I was a young “high speed, low drag” sailor in the US Navy, steaming across the Pacific and Indian Oceans at night aboard the pride of the fleet, my first ship, the mighty USS Enterprise CVN 65. Nights on the open road remind me of peaceful nights at the conclusion of flight operations when I could find a comforable place to kick back on a sponson or catwalk and stare off into the night sky so clear there would be no horizon, you could not tell where the sea ended and the sky began. During these calm nights on the road, I can begin piecing articles together in my mind before actually setting down to my lap top. Once I log out to my sleeper berth, I have time to study and research, and also to work on my blog pieces. A tremendous amount of time goes into bringing you, our faithful readers, quality topics. As I have told my co-author Brenda Sue, quality is always first and foremost over quantity in this endeavor.

At David’s Way, besides promoting a diet of low carbs and high protein combined with physical fitness, we are also strong advocates of stress reduction as another integral element of healthy living. Years ago, when I was a young man, I got into a little trouble in the Navy and had to complete a program where I was first introduced to The Serenity Prayer. Ever since, I have done my level best to live by the principals of this prayer in all of life’s endeavors. This prayer has helped me immensely through life, and even if you do not believe in God, the principles can still help you too. Here is the prayer with my breakdown of what it means to me:

Lord, grant me the Serenity to accept that which I can not change.

In life, there are always going to be circumstances beyond our control that we can do little about. Sometimes bad things happen to good people. Those people might be ourselves, or a loved one. I am not saying it is easy in anyway, but in order to best get through a tough time, we must remain calm and keep our wits about us. By not letting our stressed emotions over ride common and practical sense, we can then think about applying the next part of the Serentiy Prayer.

Grant me the Courage to change that which I can.

Sometimes it takes courage to get through a tough time with a proactive approach to improve your situation. For an example from my own life, nine years ago I suffered a debilitating spinal injury at L5 S1. I blew the disk out like a jelly donut and it encapsulated my sciatic nerve. I was for all intents and purposes disabled at this time as I could no longer work. Treatment for this injury required a series of Epidural Steroid Injections to my spine which were totally non-effective. Then I underwent spinal surgery where all the herniated disk material was removed along with arthritis which had formed in my lower spine. Surgery was followed by two months of physical therapy. Despite the injections and surgery, my sciatic nerve was damaged and it subseqently scarred over which leaves me with daily chronic pain in my right leg, even all these years later. I will suffer chronic sciaitic pain for the rest of my life. Back to the Serenity, I have come to accept this chronic pain as a part of my life. But, it took a lot of courage in learning to walk normal again and then to return to the work force. It took me a year to train my leg to track normally instead of having my foot dragging off to the side. Every step was a conscious decision to make it track right. It was a lot of effort and more than a few tears were shed during the process. I have experienced unnbearable pain, yet, I knew that if I could get through the pain, I could once again lead a normal life. My family doctor recommended I go on permanant and full disability because I was so debilitated with pain and was relying on pain pills to just get through the day. I could have gave in to the pain and went on disability, instead I chose to face life without the numbing effects of pain meds and began doing everything within my power to regain normalcy. I had to face the fact that some of the therapy I had to endure to get better was going to bring tears of pain, and yet I still did it for myself and my family. I knew that I could make a change for the better, therefore I mustered up the courage and did everything in my power to get my full life back which I accomplished.

And the Wisdom to know the difference.

The wisdom to know the difference is important in that there will be circumstances you can not change no matter how courageous you may be. If you have more courage than common sense, you will only find yourself stressed in trying to acheive the unachievable. We are not all Superman or Wonderwoman, we are not super heros who are infallible. No, we are all human, with very real human problems. I believe in being proactive in making my own life better and encourage others to always do the same, yet once we have the serentiy to accept that which we can not change, we can make vast improvements in our quality of life by just letting things go and not being stressed. Conversely, if we have the courage to step up to life’s never ending challenges, we are also rewarded in that what may be difficult today, realistically can be made less bothersome each and everytime we confront adversity head on. To sum up the Serenity Prayer, it really amounts of learning to pick and choose your battles. Choosing which hill is worth dying on and which hill is worth walking away from. How you confront the stress of life is totally up to your own personal decisions, choose wisely.

Lord, grant me the serenity to accept that which I can not change.

The courage to change that which I can.

And the wisdom to know the difference.

Think about this, study this, and then live by these principles in all of lifes endeavors, your life will only be enriched by doing so.

Low Carb Tuna Casserole

Nutritional Info

Serves 4

Calories 586

Protein 12.7 grams

Carbs 7 grams

2 oz. Butter

1 yellow onion

1 green bell pepper

5 1/3 oz. Celery stalks

16 oz. Tuna in olive oil, drained

1 cup mayo

4 oz. Freshly shredded parmesan

1 t. Chili flakes

Salt and pepper

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 400

Chop veggies finely and saute in butter til slightly soft

Mix tuna, mayo, parmesan and chili flakes and add sauted veggies

Bake for 15-20 minutes til golden brown

Just Keep Going

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The way to win at anything is to just keep doing it. Whether  it’s weight control or digging a ditch, just don’t  quit and you will succeed. Success is defined as the accomplishment of an aim or a purpose. Isn’t our purpose in being here to live a healthy life? Bearing that in mind, there is no endpoint. Our purpose is to navigate a path that will give us a rewarding life every day. This doesn’t mean that hard days will be easy. It means that even on hard  days we will find comfort in our rituals and regimens that make us healthy. We will find satisfaction in coming out of difficult situations intact with habits that will see us through day by day.

Part of being healthy is resilience, the ability to recover quickly from difficulties, or to be tough. Good health habits, avoiding sugar, eating a clean, high protein-low carb diet, resting well and getting regular exercise will make you resilient. Age and stress will have less affect on you than on others who are not mindful of their lifestyle.

I encourage you to just keep going. Don’t look for the exit. There’s not one. Life is a beautiful  journey, enjoy the ride.