Category: Health

Lose Weight During the Holidays

I wrote recently about my experimenting on myself during the Holidays concerning weight loss. When I threw abandon to the wind, I set a chain of events in motion that affected me all year in a very negative way. However, when I accepted this festive Season as a challenge, I actually achieved a significant weight loss goal on December 15 of that year. The festivities had been in full swing for months at that time, about 4 months, because the first Fall Holiday treats arrive in your local Walmart in August! There is a method to my madness and below are some of my tips for taking control during the “most wonderful time of the year”.

1-Don’t buy a ton of Holiday goodies. They will make more.

Even if you have favorites, only buy a limited amount. Buy or make just enough for your event and leave the rest in the store or unmade. Last year I made my Dad’s favorite candy and made sure that it was just enough for him. There was nothing for me to nibble on.

2-Send any left-overs home with your guests.

Never keep them! If no one wants them, throw them out while you’re still full, as soon as you finish your meal. If you wait, they will sound good when you’re hungry again and you very well may cave into your cravings and appetite.

3-Plan a healthy Holiday!

My son just celebrated his birthday and I made the High Protein Hot Pockets recipe that we have here on the blog, only I made them Mexican style instead of breakfast. They were wonderful! I also made a Swerve brand chocolate cake with a buttercream made from coconut oil, Swerve Confectioner’s, vanilla extract, cocoa and salt. It was an incredible, low carb, sugar-free delight.

4-Stick to your workout schedule and maybe add in an extra walk.

When I reached that goal during the Season, I made sure that I walked extra every day. I never missed my workout and worked a little harder at each one. Outdoor activity during this Season is invigorating and calms your mind during the whirlwind of activity that always accompanies the Holidays. Take advantage of cooler temperatures and get outside.

5- Focus on your food plan.

It’s very easy to get busy and forget, or put off, tracking every bite that goes into your mouth but right now, more than any other time, it’s imperative. With so much extra food and too many goodies around it’s easy to underestimate your calories. Be strict about tracking and you will see the scale fall.

6-Get your sleep!

When we skimp on sleep, we produce too much cortisol, our stress hormone. This devilish substance adds fat around your belly. Commit to 8 hours a night and reap the benefits of less stress during this extremely stressful time of year. You will also build muscle when you get enough sleep if you’re strength training. That muscle will boost your metabolism for a little extra burn.

7-Just say “No!”

Food pushers run rampant right now. Don’t let friends and family influence you to abandon your weight management initiative. Stand your ground and come January when they are crying tears of regret, you will be looking at swimsuits for the Spring.

8-Stay involved with like-minded individuals

Stay active on David’s Way. Avoid people who influence you in a negative manner. There really is such a thing as “social contagion”. You take on the habits of those around you. Choose wisely.

9-Avoid alcohol.

It’s not worth the extra calories, carbs or appetite stimulating effects that come with it. You will lose your inhibitions and eat everything in sight. Just don’t.

10-Get up and go again!

If you give in and over indulge, pass it off as one event and get right back to your healthy lifestyle. One mistake won’t ruin your months of good efforts. It’s what happens in the long run that really matters.

And always remember, we’re here for you. We will find you a special recipe or answer any questions you may have, free of charge. Just ask.

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Living With GERD

Do you suffer from heartburn or GERD? Have you ever been awakened from a deep slumber in the middle of the night, feeling terrified that you’re drowning in stomach acid as it painfully forces it way up your throat? Have antacids or proton pump inhibitor medications become a regular staple on your weekly grocery list? If so, you are far from alone in this. This is evident by the plethora of over the counter medications available for heartburn and GERD. If this problem was not so prevalent in western society, there would not be so many of these medicines available to you.

What is GERD?

Heartburn, also called GERD (gastroesophagael reflux disease), happens when the acid in your stomach flows back up and into your esophagus. Heartburn symptoms often occur shortly after eating and can last for a few minutes or even hours. GERD causes a mild to painful burning sensation in your chest or throat, can result in a sour or bitter taste in the mouth, or even cough and or sinus symptoms such as post nasal drip. Your risk of GERD will increase when you have excess belly fat which causes pressure on the stomach that causes a back flow of stomach acid

Obesity causes us far too many avoidable problems. Those problems which arise as a result of being fat are far greater than hoping to be able to get a seat belt around yourself or having to buy new clothes every so often as your girth increases. The fatter you become, the more pressure your belly fat places onto your stomach which causes more GERD,

But, I can always take a Zantac or Previcid to prevent this, why worry?

Well, besides the unpleasant sensation of re-tasting your food which is now mixed with caustic stomach acid, GERD also burns the hell out of your esophagus – no different than how battery acid will burn your skin on the outside of your body. Once your esophagus has been burned by the stomach acid, it can take a couple days before it is healed. The risk of allowing this burning of your esophagus to continue is you become more likely to develop cancer of the esophagus. GERD is nothing you should take lightly just because you do not need to see your physician in order to get medications to alleviate some of the painful symptoms. GERD can potentially kill you.

From ObesityAction.org
As acid flows back into the esophagus, it can cause irritation and inflammation. Throughout time, complications can develop. The esophagus can narrow, leading to a stricture and swallowing problems. A sore or ulcer can develop which can bleed, be painful and make swallowing difficult. Additionally, precancerous changes can occur to the esophagus, called Barrett’s esophagus, which is the main risk factor for developing esophageal cancer.

It turns out that obesity is associated with three related esophageal disorders: GERD, Barrett’s esophagus, and esophageal adenocarcinoma. The risk for these disorders seems to progressively increase with increasing weight. The goal of treating GERD is not only to decrease bothersome GERD symptoms but also to decrease one’s risks of developing these other, more serious esophageal conditions.

What can you do?
The most effective action you can personally take is to make the decision to lose weight and then carry through with this plan. Create a lifestyle that involves healthy eating by cutting out added sugars, simple carbohydrates and processed foods. This change to a healthy lifestyle is much more affordable than high priced over the counter medications, and or, visits to your doctor. Losing weight is certainly more of an attractive option that letting the condition go until you have developed esophageal adenocarcinoma. You need to know that if you reach this point, adenocarcinoma’s are very aggressive and hard to treat cancers that can and will take your life with a swiftness. I watched my healthy, younger sister, lose her life in only 18 months after diagnosis with adenocarcinoma, even after very aggressive chemotherapy and radiation treatments. This disease is no joke.
In a 2012 study published in the journal Obesity; The majority of individuals who were overweight or affected by obesity who enrolled in a structured weight-loss program including dietary, physical activity and behavioral changes, experienced complete resolution of their GERD symptoms. The relationship between weight-loss and resolution of symptoms was dependent on the amount of weight lost, such that the more weight subjects lost, the greater improvement they saw in symptoms. Whereas women saw improvement in GERD symptoms after losing 5 to 10 percent of their weight, men experienced improvement after losing 10 percent of their weight.

If you think it is perfectly fine to remain obese and to continue just treating your GERD with medications, remember this; Like all medications, GERD medications can have side effects and can interact with other drugs. The only goal you should have through using medication as a therapy is to relieve GERD symptoms, in order to allow the healing of the esophagus, and  to prevent GERD complications while you are actively losing weight to achieve a healthy level of body fat. GERD medications should be a temporary necessity, and not become a permanent item you keep stored in your medicine cabinet.

While the risks of taking GERD medications long term are minimal as compared to living with the condition, there is still risk for some. From Web.MD; People who use common heartburn drugs for months to years may face heightened risks of dying from heart disease, kidney failure or stomach cancer, a new study suggests.

The study included more than 200,000 U.S. veterans. It’s the latest to raise concerns over drugs called proton pump inhibitors (PPIs). They include prescription and over-the-counter drugs like Prilosec (omeprazole), Prevacid (lansoprazole) and Nexium (esomeprazole). And they rank among the top-selling medications in the United States.

Research in recent years has linked prolonged PPI use to increased risks of various diseases and premature death.

In today’s world, health care is extremely expensive and the expense is only going to keep rising no matter what any politician on Capital Hill might tell you when promoting their latest Heath Care Plan. Some think eating healthy is too expensive as well. However, what you always have to take into consideration is that, even if some of your healthy grocery store items might cost a bit more, it is and always will be cheaper for you to manage your weight through healthy nutrition over spending any extra hard earned dollars you may have on unnecessary health care treatments that can all be traced back to unhealthy personal habits.

Beware “The Season”

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YIKES!!!

Oh, my goodness! Here we are again in the most fattening Season of the year. Remember, I speak from experience. I have been a size 22 and I know every excuse to be fat. The real kicker is simply this, when we look for excuses to be fat, this Season is an excellent one. The truth of the matter is that as soon as January gets here, we have all that Holiday junk  that we deliberately over-purchased laying around and well, it will be a whole year before we have Brach’s Christmas Tree Taffies again or chocolate covered marshmallow Santas, so we have to eat them, right? I mean this Season only comes once a year! Wrong. The Season of Gluttony is year-round.

Personal Experience

I have used myself as a lab rat and ran experiments to see how specific behaviors affected my weight. One year I threw abandon to the wind and ate whatever I wanted during this time. Guess what. Because I had fueled cravings with so much sugar, I was out of control for the entire year. I did not regain control until the next year at this time and I had gained 35 pounds. No kidding. It happened.

The Madness

In October of that year I began laying my plan. I would not buy any Holiday treats until the day of the actual Holiday. I decided to only buy what I would eat that day. I stuck to my plan. I did not activate intense cravings and I did not develop habits that were all but impossible to stop. It worked. Since then I forgo all sugar sweetened foods and never have any problem at this time of year now. David’s Way has remedied that problem.

Perpetual Motion

When you indulge on the level of gluttony and eat sugar, one Holiday runs into the next. As soon as you finish all that Winter junk, well here comes Valentine’s Day. Even if you are not in a romantic relationship, there’s plenty of candy to go around and it does. After all, you have just finished your stash of Winter goodies and Valentine’s Day candy will satisfy those cravings.

The Hamster Wheel

Hmmm…let’s not forget about Spring Holidays. Wow, how many different kinds of chocolate and/or candy eggs can candy manufacturers come up with? They have become quite devious, taking favorite candy bars and other candies and shaping them like an egg and calling it by some cutsie, innocent sounding name to feed your addiction. Will you allow yourself to be manipulated like this? You are not helpless and this situation is not hopeless. We have candy recipes right here on the blog that will satisfy a sweet tooth. Try Sugar Free Andes Mint Cups or Sugar Free Raspberry Lemon Cups . We have brownie recipes and many other sugar free sweet delights. You don’t have to eat sugar and a bunch of carbs to get your fix. The great thing about our recipes is that they won’t give you cravings. You can enjoy them and not want them again tomorrow.

Party Animal

Whether you “party” til you just can’t party “no more” or simply indulge at the church social, summer is a time of intense social gatherings that involve barbecue, ice cream, potato salad and baked beans and whatever else your culture can come up with. The common thread is there’s always a lot of it. There is usually alcohol which just adds to the carb and calorie burden and increases cravings. If you missed being bikini ready this year, you are likely to abandon all control to the wind and just go crazy. Wow. Next thing you know, it’s October again.

The Fix

In my last article, Why Monday? I asked the question, “Why do you wait until Monday to start making healthy decisions? So, why do you wait until any Season is over to save your own life? Start now, right now and be ready for those candy, cookie and cake laden events and days. Learn this website. You can find any recipe you might want here or if not, contact us on the “Contact” button or in the comments and we’ll find one for you. You really have no excuse. Take care of yourself. No one else is going to do it for you. Be awesome.

 

 

Losing That Last 20 Pounds

I was doing a little reading today to find a little inspiration for something to write about, and came upon this question within a weight loss forum where the individual asked if anyone else decided that losing the last few pounds was just not worth it.

If you have ever followed any weight loss social media sights, you know this mindset of quitting is actually quite prevalent, even among those who have had great success at losing a good amount of body fat. It seems it is almost always that last 20 pounds that people have the most difficulty with losing.

And there is no good reason for anyone to just give up on their weight loss journey, especially when they are so close to their goal weight.

Excuses!

When you follow any of these weight loss social media sights, you will see a myriad of excuses why some cannot lose weight, or why some have done well and then cannot get past a plateau.

I just cannot lose these last pounds!

Is it that you cannot lose those final pounds or is it that you simply do not want to remain committed to doing what it takes in order to obtain your goal weight?

It’s too hard!

Too hard? What is going to be harder in your life, losing a few more pounds or living a life that has you less than healthy. A life that involves regular doctors visits for unnecessary ailments that are almost always going to be related to your nutritional habits.

I Just can’t eat any less than I do now.

Really? Do you think you need to eat less in order to lose unwanted weight? If you have quit eating sugar and processed foods and only eat healthy whole foods that meet all of your nutritional needs, you will have a difficult time managing to actually eat enough to not lose weight.

I’m missing out on all the fun my family and friends are having.

Is a few moments of bliss worth the life that comes from gluttonous eating of poor food choices? Is that momentary fun worth the disgust you feel when you peer upon yourself in the mirror? Is that ice cream sundae worth the expense of new clothing because even though you are at an age where your body should have quit growing, it is anyhow? Is the fun on Friday nights out having pizza and beer worth it when you are worried that you might not fit in your wedding dress you recently purchased upon getting engaged? When you have to take readings of your blood sugar and then take your diabetic drugs or insulin, is it really worth having it to join in with your co-workers when one brings donuts to the office?

I’m miserable, I feel so deprived, I’m too depressed all the time.

This is a common problem for those who know that simple carbohydrates and sugar are a problem for them, yet they refuse to quit eating it. Being miserable, feeling deprived and depressed is part and parcel to an addiction to sugar and simple carbohydrates. As long as you keep feeding the addiction, even just a little bit, you are going to feel this way. Quit sugar, quit simple carbs such as breads and pastas, and quit processed foods and soon your mood will improve as the cravings you get from simple carbs and sugar will soon subside entirely as your hormones will come back into balance.

Just one more binge with the junk food and I swear I will be over it, or, I just cannot imagine life without my favorite junk food.

No, you will not be over it. You will not be over it until you actually get it in your mind to get through the first couple of weeks after quitting sugar and simple carbs.

I’m not good at exercise and I have never really liked it anyhow.

So what? Despite the fact I encourage all who are capable of exercise to do so, it is not necessary in order to bring your weight down. Exercise is about strengthening your body and improving your quality of life, however, losing weight is still simply a matter of not consuming more calories than your body burns in a day. If you cannot lose weight, no matter what you think or believe, you are eating more calories than your body requires. Exercise just allows you to eat a few more calories than you would be able to otherwise. But truth be told, most people do not burn as many calories with their exercise routines as they believe they do. Most of the calories you burn every day are a result of body functions you do not even have to think about. It takes energy for you to breathe, and sleep, and for all of your internal organs to function. Only about 15 to 30 percent of your calories burned through the course of the day are through intentional physical activity such as walking, jogging or maybe while doing the Funky Chicken when your favorite song comes on the radio. No matter what you might think, your exercise is not your primary pathway to burning fat, it is only a fraction of it.

You don’t understand, my body is comfortable at this weight. My metabolism will not let me lose more, it’s not my fault.

Really, is it that your body is comfortable being over weight, or is it just all in your own mind? Your metabolism can be revved up through proper nutritional habits and exercise. Odds are you have a larger problem in between your ears than you do with your metabolism. Your metabolism is a dynamic element, it is not static , meaning it cannot be changed.

My hormones are out of whack, therefore I have no hope.

Have you been to a doctor and had blood work to know this for fact? If not, you are just making an assumption that is not well founded. If your hormones are not in balance or being produced in the adequate amount, your doctor can prescribe you medicines to assist with this. However, most of this can be remedied through healthy eating and exercise. You have 9 hormones that tell you to eat, and 14 hormones that are supposed to tell you when to stop. By taking responsibility to consume all the nutrients you need for proper hormonal balance most of these imbalances can and will sort themselves out. However, we do recognize your body may have a genetic glitch such as not producing enough leptin, or maybe it makes too much cortisol. Maybe none of your satiety related hormones are working at all. If that is the case, no amount of willpower is going to overcome this problem. If this is the case, then between you and your doctor, you will need to reprogram your hormonal circuitry. This is going to possibly require medications, but it is definitely going to take you making a choice to begin eating responsibly for your health. The more body fat you lose while adding lean muscle mass, the more your hormonal balance will get back into sync with your body’s needs.

I have done everything right, and now I do not know what to do in order to lose my final 20.

You probably have done everything correctly if you have successfully lost a good amount of weight over time. You may have all the keys in your hand to lose that final 20 pounds, but are overlooking an important step. That step is to continuously evaluate your caloric needs as the calories required in order for you to lose 1 to 2 pounds per week were spot on at 300 pounds, that same total might be what is required to maintain at your current weight. Worse yet, that caloric total might actually be enough for you to begin gaining weight again. You have to make continuous adjustments during your weight loss, and even once you have met your goals. For instance, the total amount of calories you burn during the summer may be significantly higher than those you burn in the winter months. Consider, 1 pound of body fat equals 3500 calories. It takes a deficit of 500 per day in order for you to lose 1 pound of fat per week. Now, let’s assume that while your body requires 2000 calories per day in order to maintain during the active months of the summer, it may only need 1750 calories per day during the winter when you are more likely to be in your home and sedentary. If you have not adjusted your intake down, you will find the fat coming back on at a rate of 1/2 pound per week with only an excess 250 calories per day over your needs. Weight management is truly a management issue. It is not difficult, but it does require constant attention and adjustments along the way. Here at David’s Way, we can help you with this. We have 600 articles and healthy recipes now which have always been, and always will be free to you. If you have questions or comments, then please do so in the comments section, or you can contact us through e-mail through our Contact Menu tab.

Why Monday?

I can remember always planning to “start my diet” on Monday, you know, right after a weekend of feasting and binge eating everything in sight. It made for a great weekend of mindless abandon where my nutrition was concerned. Somehow though, “Monday” never came as long as I was eating sugar. I continually craved salt, sugar and fat. Pizza and brownies filled the bill nicely, and “Monday” never came.

Always wanting to be at a good body fat percentage, but never doing what it takes to get there, is a combination of two things, being habituated to instant gratification and procrastination. In our fast paced, instant, drive-through world, we are conditioned that we don’t have to wait for anything. We want everything right now and we don’t want to put forth any effort to obtain it. We act like we believe that everything should be on a touch screen where you just touch it and BAM! it’s yours. As soon as we discover that whatever we want may take a little work to achieve, we immediately begin to put off starting that project and procrastination takes over our lofty goals.

I also remember the first time that I heard the phrase, “Today Is The First Day Of The Rest Of Your Life”. It changed me. I realized that the time to start was right now. I struggled with all kinds of weight loss plans for years, shakes, appetite suppressant candies, weight loss groups, extremely low calorie diets, low-carb, keto…oh, and let’s not forget the “Grapefruit Diet”. You see, although I had the revelation that I had to start NOW, I didn’t have the revelation that there is no quick fix. We don’t do it and get it over with. We simply follow good nutrition principles for the rest of our lives and over time, trusting the process, the magic is worked. We become slim and healthy for life. I did not know the secret to this until I discovered David’s Way.

At David’s Way we simply teach a program of sound nutrition with no empty calories followed for the rest of your life. You will lose the amount of weight that you need to lose following this plan. If you procrastinate about beginning, you are delving deeper into your addiction and adding more pounds to your already stressed body. Why do you think that piling thousands of empty calories into your stomach and overloading all your vital organs from binge eating over an entire weekend will make “Monday” any easier? People die from binge eating. The cardiovascular system has to step up it’s pace to accommodate all those extra calories and sometimes it’s just not up to it.

Do yourself a favor. With your doctor’s permission, start now. Start right now. Go to the Calorie Counter Pro and download your personalized plan to get to a healthy weight. Start now. It’s FREE. We’re here to answer any questions you may have along the way. Let us know how you’re doing.

Will You? Can You?

Here at David’s Way we get frequent requests through our blog contact menu from people who are needing help and or advice in how to lose and manage their weight in a healthy manner. While we have a long term goal of actually assisting clients on a full time basis, this is currently  not possible for a variety of reasons. That being said, we are always happy to still give advice to our readers when it is asked of us. Our goal is to help others in living healthier lives through proper nutrition and exercise.

If, or when you request our assistance or advice, we will always have a few standard questions we will ask of you. While the answers to these simple questions are important for us, they need to also be important to you in order for us to help you help yourself. Please understand that no matter your response to any of these questions, we cast no judgement. We actually understand your plight,  as we have been through the same struggles with weight as you.

  1. What brings you to us for advice?
    • Are you simply tired of how you look and feel?
    • Are you desperate? Have you tried everything under the sun only to have failed with each and every attempt at weight loss?
    • Is family or friends badgering you to lose weight?
    • Are you trying to appease these well meaning loved one? you have to do this for yourself, not for the sake of others.
    • Worse case scenario, as a result of you weight, are you now suffering the consequences of bad health as a result of your poor dietary habits?
    • Do you have another health condition where your weight is keeping you from receiving necessary medical procedures such as surgeries?
  2. Are you truly ready to make a healthy change with yourself?
    • This question ties in with number 1. On a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being “not ready” and 10 being “ready”, any score less than a 7 seven means you are not likely to succeed in achieving your objective. We have found little to no success from those who do not truly approach their weight loss agenda feeling anything less than ready to make a change. Those who are not fully committed to a lifestyle change are doomed to failure.
    • Know that while we will still provide you with advice, taking it all on board and incorporating positive changes are on you to accomplish for yourself.
  3. On a scale of 1 to 10, are you going to adhere to your dietary goals?
    • With 1 being “never” and 10 being “always”.
    • If you are never going to adhere, please do not waste any of ours or your own time. Dietary goals must be kept, otherwise you will only have temporary success at best.
    • Here at David’s Way, we promote a high protein, low carbohydrate lifestyle where you do not eat simple carbs such as sugar, nor do we consume processed foods such as whole prepared meals you can toss into your oven for a half hour or so.
    • The fact we tell you to not eat sugar or processed foods is what separates us from some of the big weight loss businesses such as Weight Watchers where they tell you it is okay to still eat sugar as long as you track it. By telling one who is carb addicted they can still eat sugar, it is akin to Alcoholics Anonymous telling their members an occasional beer or drink will not hurt. If you have a weight problem as a result of a carb addiction, you are not likely to just be able to bring it under control by will power alone. A carb addiction is not a mental weakness, it comes as a chemical biological response within your body where your only control is by not eating that which drives your addiction.
  4. Are you confident in making a lifestyle change?
    • With 1 being “not ready” and 10 being “very ready”. Even if you are not confident, we can still work with you. We understand that a new healthy lifestyle may be an entirely new concept to you. Yet we also know that confidence can be built on over time with many small victories.
    • If you are confident in yourself, then there is no limit to where a healthy lifestyle can carry you.
  5. We will want to know lastly the degree of importance a healthy life style is to you.
    • With 1 being “not ready” and 10 being “very ready”
    • If there is little to no degree of importance in losing weight and getting healthy, then please take a hard look at yourself and consider a few things such as:
      1. Just how heavy are you comfortable in getting?
      2. Why are you comfortable being over weight, and where are you going to draw the line?
      3. Being obese will at some point cause you health issues, if not already. Are you okay with type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome, heart failure, high blood pressure, cancers, among many other weight and nutrition related ailments?
      4. Can you afford high medical bills that are a direct result of your poor habits? If not, you had better well reconsider your lifestyle.
      5. Is the sugar laden foods you enjoy for comfort worth your life?
      6. How much value do you place on your own life?

We are here for you and are happy to answer your comments or questions. Know that we are direct and to the point and will not sugar coat anything to spare your feelings. We believe the best path forward is paved with the truth. The gravity of your situation must be dealt with in order to best help you. Again, this is what separates us from the others. We have a desire to help our readers and to never use you as a perpetual income stream such as how the others will.

The blog information and articles will always be free to you. In the near future, we will have an app where all your nutrition and fitness activities can be tracked. At this point we will have a small fee for the app in order to cover our expenses. At some point also we will be taking on clients full time, this too will be a paid service. We will keep you posted of our progress towards these endeavors.

Thank you and God bless for reading.

The Role of Nutrition in Cancer Treatment

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Wisdom

You have heard it said that you are what you eat. While this is a definitive Truth, there is nowhere that this is more important than during cancer treatment. Proper nutrition can have great benefits for those engaged in the fight of their life with cancer.

Stay Strong

Muscle atrophy and malnutrition are common among people who have cancer. Lack of physical activity over an extended period of time along with a decreased appetite causes muscle loss. Plenty of lean protein in the diet will help to prevent this debilitating condition. Without adequate muscle, the patient is at an increased risk for falls and a farther downward spiral of appetite and nutrition because muscle increases your metabolism which drives your appetite. Stay healthier by nourishing your muscles.

The Perfect Storm

It is necessary to restrict added sugar in the diet because added sugar causes inflammation in the body which causes changes in DNA and can lead to cancer development. The excess calories from sugar are used to rapidly create more cells and every time we make a new cell there is a chance for the DNA code to be faulty. Sugar also increases fat cells and when those fat cells are stored as visceral fat which surrounds our vital organs, our hormone levels are affected in a way that influences when cells divide and die. Visceral fat also exists in a low oxygen state due to it’s compact storage deep within the body. Cancer thrives in a low oxygen state so the extra visceral fat gained by the excess calories from sugar greatly increases the risk of cancer development and proliferation. Obesity is a known contributor to cancer risk.

Incriminating Evidence

At David’s Way we encourage a low carbohydrate diet with no added sugar or simple carbs which break down into sugar. A study of tumor growth in glucose based diets as opposed to a low carb, or ketogenic diet, revealed that tumor growth INCREASED by 32% in people on the glucose based diet but DECREASED by 24% in those on the ketogenic diet. While one study is not definitive, the results cannot be ignored. (1)

The Good, The Bad and the Ugly

Whole foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains and healthy fats along with the lean protein may also decrease the chances of forming new cancer cells due to the phytonutrients and fatty acids abundant in these foods. Fatty acids are also believed to help preserve muscle mass and function in cancer patients during treatment. Processed meats, all refined carbs, salt and alcohol may increase your risk of cancer. At David’s Way we promote these healthy foods and avoid the cancer causing foods that are believed to increase the risk of the development and proliferation of cancer cells. Visit often and read our articles and use our recipes. We’re here to answer your questions and encourage you on your journey to better health.

(1) https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/cancer-and-diet#bottom-line

Want to Quit? Get Up!

If you have had a setback that makes you want to just lay down and die, listen up. Even though you may be on the ground now, you can get back up. It’s up to you. Agreeably, there are terminal illnesses that it seems that no one can fix, but anything less than that can be fixed. Is there still breath in your body? Well, get up.

Many years ago I was driving down a small country road in farm country and passed a huge corn field that had been beat to the ground the night before. It was so sad. I had watched that corn grow from the day it first broke through the hard ground. It had survived blistering Alabama heat and weeks of near drought conditions and now, there it lay, flat. It appeared lifeless. Although I had grown up in rural Alabama for most of my life and known countless farmers, I knew little about this hearty plant. I assumed that the crop was a total loss. Have you ever felt like that? You know, you have fought and fought to make progress towards your goal or sometimes to merely survive and then BAM! in one night, all Hell breaks loose and you want to die…or at least quit working so damn hard. Remember, that won’t get you what you want. You have to get up.

I drove on into town and did what seemed like endless hours of shopping because we lived in the country and I shopped once a week. I had to get everything for the week in this one trip. I was in town about 4-5 hours and gave no more thought to the destruction of the corn field. Finally after wrangling a shopping cart and a four year old through mountains of toys and sugary treats designed to make him howl for them, I turned my car down that country road and gave it a little extra acceleration. I was tired and wired and had experienced a bit of psychological trauma in Walmart. “Well-meaning” shoppers were trying to tell me how to properly cope with an autistic toddler and it was all that I could do to stay out of jail. I really wanted to just slam-dunk the lot of them. My parents were disgruntled about said toddler, other family members were chiming in and I was exhausted and broke when it was time to go home. I just wanted to give up.

I was fuming and desperate. Life was not good that day. Everything seemed harder than it was. I was having a pity party, why me? Why did everything have to be so hard? I was always struggling with my weight and that wasn’t going so good either. I was the biggest that I had ever been and depression was crowding me on every side. I was a size 22, at about 200 pounds. I’m 5’6″. Everything seemed hopeless. Have you ever had these feelings? Do you feel like this now? Get up.

I was all teary- eyed, dreading unloading the groceries and trying to figure out what to fix for supper for an ex that was impossible to please. Again, why me? Where did I go so wrong that I would never be happy? I hated my life. About that time, I almost ran off the road. The corn that was beat to the ground that morning was standing straight up! I had to find a place to stop close to the field. I had to take this all in! How was it possible? As it turned out, I discovered that corn may be all but completely destroyed, laying flat down, for all intents and purposes, dead, and when the sun shines on it, it will rise. As I sat there in my car tears streamed down my face. I knew that this was meant for me. I knew that I was supposed to see that miracle of the corn that day. I have never forgotten.

Since that day, my life has changed in so many ways that it is unrecognizable as the same life and I am unrecognizable as the same person. When I show people the pictures of me then, sometimes people don’t believe that’s me. I have changed completely, inside and out. I found David’s Way to make me strong and lean and profoundly healthy. I have also adapted the “Make your world small.” idea that David teaches. I don’t waste precious time on negativism and people who will try to undermine my goals. I work hard at my job and on this blog to try to tell the world that you don’t have to be unhealthy due to the choices that you make. I focus on what’s important and let everything else go. Although many years have passed since that day, I am much younger in so many ways. Every day is a good day because I make it so. I have huge challenges in my life still but my health and happiness are not on that list anymore. I took control of that. I have hard times and difficult days but in the end, I win. I don’t remember how to lose.

I am a strength trainer. Every time that I stand up from a heavy squat or set a new PR, I win. The Iron is a harsh taskmaster but if I go by the rules that it sets, I will always win. Even when I fail to complete a set or a rep, the mere act of trying as hard as I can makes me a winner because nothing else will train my mind and body like the Iron. Whatever you do, do it with all of the power in you. Don’t quit. Get up.

10 Hacks to Accomplish Your Goals

Do you want to succeed in life or just complain about how hard and unfair life is? There are people who think that complaining justifies failure. It doesn’t. If you use all that energy that you put into complaining about the unfairness of life, into working towards your goals, you will win.

1-Make a plan and work it in a relaxed controlled manner. Even if your goal is lofty and attaining it is extremely difficult, take control. Dig in. Learn everything you can about your goal and be willing to do whatever it takes to achieve it. Get committed.

2-Analyze your weaknesses and strengths. If you can’t resist M&M’s, for Heaven’s sake, don’t have them in your house! That’s a no-brainer. If you are an avid swimmer and thoroughly enjoy that then you might want to choose that as your main fitness activity. If you hate yoga, don’t do yoga. Know yourself and work with what you’ve got.

3-Learn everything there is to know about your goal. I am a strength trainer. The worst possible thing that I can do is to assume that I know everything that I need to know about this topic. Not only would I stop progressing towards my goal, I could get hurt. At first glance, I thought that lifting weights was simply picking it up and putting it down. That is only a small part of this lifestyle. I ask questions and discuss lifting. I also study all the time, literally. I analyze my nutrition by keeping meticulous records of what I eat and lift. That way I know how different foods, schedules, hydration. rest and state of mind affect my performance. Just as I study to write for you, I study to be healthy and strong for me. Keep learning. Knowledge is power.

4-KEEP RECORDS! David taught me this some time back. Without proper records it’s impossible to know how we are doing. Keep records of everything that affects your progression towards your goal. I know that my state of mind is critical to my performance with the Iron so I added that category to the records that David had me keep. Make your records detailed to the point that a year later you can go back and look at your notes and know exactly what happened that day and why. If I have a “bad” day at lifting, I analyze my performance and write down what I discover. If I have a great day, I do the same thing. That way I know what helps and what hurts. Take the time to analyze your behavior. Always keep a food diary. Include your calories, carbs and protein at the very least.

5-Perfect the small stuff. In this fast paced world that we live in, we tend to rush through everything. If we are trying to lose fat, we tend to look at our day in a block of time and say things like’ “I don’t eat that much, I don’t know why I’m fat.” when the truth is we don’t have any idea what we eat. Here’s where the record keeping comes in, but remember, it has to be detailed. Vaguely scribbling down at midnight what you “remember” that you ate all day is not adequate. You must get the details right. If you are lifting weights or swimming laps, you must get the details right. Your form will either make you successful or destroy your best efforts. If you swim laps have you ever tried doing the “Butterfly” stroke without paying attention to detail? You will most likely drown that way. Whatever you do, make sure that you do it right.

6-Positive self-talk is important. You cannot go where your mind won’t take you. Don’t allow negative thoughts to interfere with your progression towards your goals. Wake up every day and tell yourself that you will be successful today and most likely you will.

7-Decide what means success to you. Make sure that your goals are realistic for you. Don’t sell yourself short but don’t set ridiculous goals either. I have very specific goals for myself and they are attainable. They are not easily attainable. I will have to work long and hard to get to where I am going. It will be an uphill climb all the way. It doesn’t matter. Success for me means a very specific body type in excellent health. I have the tools. All I have to do is commit to the work. Deciding what you really want makes it easier to lay out a plan to get it.

8-Prepare. In your learning about your goal, figure out what could keep you from attaining it. Decide how to prevent that from happening. Get what you need to work with and have a long-range plan for the future. For example, in the case of getting ripped and lean, laziness and gluttony will keep you from getting it, decide to not be that way, make sure you have what you need to work out and realize that this is not going to happen overnight. Your ripped and lean body is your long-range goal, accept that now.

9-Commit to working towards your goal every day. There is no “cheat day” because this is the rest of your life. It is a lifestyle. It will not “end” until your life ends so living the healthy lifestyle every day is your pathway to ultimate success. There is no way to fail if you go at it like this.

10-Associate with like-minded people and avoid those who do not support your goals. This is critical. Have a role model and talk to them and listen to what they say and implement it into your life. If they are where you want to be, they know the way to get there. Stick with us here at David’s Way. We will help you. It’s FREE.

Keep Yourself In Balance

As so many are now days, there is a strong possibility that you are addicted to carbohydrates. You may or may not even know this, but either way, there are a few things you really need to understand about your blood sugar levels and how it can be directly affected by the kinds of food you consume each and every day, and how often during each day you might eat them. You might even think this does not apply to you since you eat a wide variety of foods during the course of your day, but have you ever spent any time reading food labels to know that your variety is indeed a variety? There is a strong possibility that all you consume has the same base ingredients of sugar, sodium, unhealthy fats and preservatives.

Every day we do different acts which really require little to no thought. We brush our teeth, shower, dress ourselves and eat our meals while never considering all the combinations of simple thoughts and motor skills which go into these daily tasks. We often just go through our days on auto-pilot and hope that we can make it through to sundown without any calamities. We go through our day without ever thinking about our vital life functions including our control and regulation of our blood sugar. We have numerous basic functions of life that are all on automatic. That is, until we make poor life choices and thereby throw a wrench into the cogs of the precious life we have been blessed with. Then we are seeking medical attention for medicines and treatments which could have been avoided simply through better life choices. You are responsible for your health, your doctor is not.

When life is grand, and we do not have a care in the world, our body still needs to be properly taken care of through good nutrition and exercise in order to keep all of our working parts in fine order. The most basic elements of day to day living depend on this. There are actions happening in our body’s that require no conscious thought, such as what happens when we eat. As we chew our food, saliva is released to help break it down into simple absorbable elements. When we eat sugar laden foods or any type of high carbohydrate foods that tastes sweet our body releases insulin into the blood stream in anticipation of the coming food energy. This energy is broken down into simple sugar (glucose) which is then absorbed into our blood. The more sugary the foods, the more rapidly the sugar is absorbed into our blood. Our blood sugar, insulin and glucagon must be kept in balance, but unfortunately, too many of us never even attempt to maintain any semblance of balance. For this, we have the current obesity epidemic. When you do not maintain a balance with these basic elements, as your blood sugar continues to rise, you will feel weaker, hungrier, moodier, and less motivated unless the motivation involves eating more crap food. This is why we say to only eat complex carbs and zero sugar. Complex carbohydrates (starches and soluble fiber) take longer to be broken down into sugar in your body. The fiber element acts as a braking mechanism to keep your blood sugar and insulin under control.

When you consume a high carbohydrate diet, especially one of simple carbs, your insulin helps to move the blood sugar to different parts of your body, where it is used or stored away. As our blood sugar rises, our insulin opens our individual cells up in order for the blood sugar to bring them energy for growth, repair, and to allow them to accomplish the work they are designed for such as the contraction of our muscles. Our insulin then signals our liver and muscles to store away a small portion of the remaining blood sugar for future use. This remaining blood sugar is converted to first, blood fat, and then it is stored into our body as the fat in our fat cells. Because of the lack of balance which comes from undisciplined eating, we are a now a nation predominately populated by over weight or obese individuals. We must keep our body in balance in order to function as healthy beings. You might believe your gut is posing no problems for you, but aesthetics aside, you and I both know this is a bullshit way of thinking.

You should know there are functions within your body that take place without your control, except for you being able to control what it is you put into your mouth. You have control over the balancing act that must be maintained.

When your blood sugar levels begin to drop over time or from activity, your liver makes a small reserve available for your body’s use. As the liver’s stores begin to be depleted, rising levels of the hormone glucagon begin to signal fat cells to open and contribute to your energy needs. This action is what burns off your body fat. If your blood sugar level seems to never drop because of the sweet treats you eat continuously during the day, your glucagon never gets the opportunity to open your fat cells for energy, therefore you will continue to remain obese. It matters not who or what you are, this is very basic human biology that you cannot ignore without health consequences at some point in your life. Sadly, these consequences that used to only be seen in adults, such as metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure are now being seen in children.

When you eat an excess of simple carbs and sugar laden foods you will continuously have high insulin levels which lead to intense cravings for more sweet foods. The more you give in to this, the more imbalanced your body will be. If you continue to give in to the cravings, you will likely find yourself with type 2 diabetes.

While we recommend you to still consume complex carbohydrates, we are adamant that you should quit eating sugar and simple carbs all together. The only caveat to this is fruit. Fruit is a simple carb, but as there is a fiber component to it, fruit does not pose the same problems as simple carbs without fiber. Know that as with any type addiction, an addiction to carbohydrates will take about ten days, give or take a few, to get past. Once you get past the cravings which come from simple carbohydrates, it becomes much easier to control your appetite. If you maintain a diet during weight loss that is higher in protein while still consuming complex carbohydrate foods, you will find yourself staying satiated much longer through out the day than you would when eating sugary foods. While you will still get hungry, the hunger will be more of a mild annoyance than a bothersome craving.

Suffering obesity and all the ailments which accompany it are a matter of your personal life choices. You, and you alone are responsible to maintain the balance that your body requires for optimal health. It is not anyone else’s fault when you contract type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure or metabolic syndrome. It is all on you and the responsibility to get well if you have fallen to these conditions are not your doctors responsibility to repair. It will only be your own blood on your own hands when your health goes south on you.

Live well, keep yourself in balance.