Category: Uncategorized

Create Your Life

wp-15857865033133155265930989736080.png

Now Is the Time

Right now, during this world-wide pandemic when it seems that we almost have no life, is a perfect time to learn how to create the life that you want. I saw a meme that said that falling down is part of life but getting up is living. While we feel like we have fallen into the void, we can learn how to stand up and craft the life that we want. Learning this essential skill will not only help you through this difficult time, it will enable you to live so much better when life returns to the new normal.

Flow

Human beings usually resist change. In so doing, we stress ourselves out beyond our limits of tolerance. Life is , by nature, constant change. Every breath is a new beginning. I’ve heard people say things like, “That blood pressure reading can’t be right! My blood pressure was 120/80 last night!” For some reason, they think that their blood pressure is a fixed number. Our blood pressure is different with every heartbeat. Blood pressure is the force that the heart exerts on the arterial walls and it is affected by everything from our emotions to the environment that we find ourselves in at the time that it is taken. We are in a constant state of change. A key component to creating your life is to realize that change is constant. We must not only learn to tolerate it, we must learn to embrace it as a part of the flow of life. Growth is change. Achievement is change. When hard times come, we must find our normal within the abnormal. For me, that’s wearing a N95, covered with another mask to work 8 hours a day. It’s not particularly pleasant, but it can be somewhat amusing because it’s just so ridiculous. I have chosen to flow with it. We look like aliens and struggle for oxygen and are constantly rearranging the things to see but there is some humor in it. It is part of my new normal.

It’s All You, Baby

I get so tired of the “Poor Little Me” mentality. We seem to think that we somehow just deserve a great life without doing anything to achieve it. I can actually remember thinking that way about fitness. I thought that people who were fit were just lucky. I thought that they had good genes that allowed them to live any way that they chose and still be fit and healthy. If you’ve read much of my writing, you will remember “Janice”, the beautiful, fit young woman who ate wisely and exercised and had a knock-out body. When I realized that Janice worked for that body, it began to change the way that I lived. I was very young and that lesson began to change me. I have never again thought for a minute that fitness was just a gift. Even Marilyn Monroe worked out. She lifted weights and minded her nutrition. (If  you don’t know who Marilyn is, google it. You need to know.) Our bodies, just like the rest of our lives are almost always a product of our choices. There are devastating circumstances that can befall any of us that can change this for anyone but unless you have had a devastating event that changed your body or your life, it’s all your decisions that decide what kind of body you will have and what kind of life that you will live with that body. Take responsibility and get the body and life that you want.

Know Yourself

Have you ever known anyone who worked tirelessly but never achieved any substantial goal? That is usually because they have not decided what they want the most. There have been a few times in my life that I had a clear epiphany, those rare moments when you have a crystal clear revelation of exactly what you need to do. In those moments you have a decision to make. Those moments are meant to be life-changing. I have always gone with them. While those insights may take you down a long, convoluted road, they are roadmaps to your heart. It’s in those moments that you have a decision to make. Will you be true to yourself or will you just let that moment of insight drift by, unheeded? I have never let one slip by me. When they come, I act. It creates a path to my goals that is direct instead of wandering around in circles for the rest of my life never finding peace or achieving anything that is truly important to me.  You alone are responsible for your happiness. Make wise decisions that always move you closer to your goals.

Believe

When I first began learning how to lift weights, I went to Dick’s and bought a 135# beginner set of weights and a barbell. David said that it wouldn’t be long before I needed more weight. While that was hard to imagine, I believed him. Since I believed him, I worked to do just that. The first time that I deadlifted 100#, I was terrified. Before long, I was buying more weight. It was surreal when I walked into Dick’s and found those extra plates and put them on the counter. Very soon, I was using them.  My original weight set was a standard set and not long after buying those few extra plates, I bought an Olympic set with a barbell that weighs 45#. My first squat at the very beginning of learning to lift was only 35#, including the 15# barbell of the standard set, and it was hard. As I loaded plates onto the Olympic bar the first time to squat, I flashed back to that pitiful first squat and a wave of disbelief flooded over me. I had come a long way. If I had not believed that I could get stronger, I never would have. When we believe that we can do something, we work towards that goal. It’s the work that brings success. The body goes where the mind takes it. Believe big.

Envision

Set goals. Once we set goals, our minds will work towards those goals continually until they are realized. Without goals, we only have ideas. If we start on a road trip without a specific destination, we will just wander around and go nowhere. If we decide that we want to see the Grand Canyon before we leave the house, then we will check the map, fill up with gas, make sure that our finances will get us there and back and maybe even plan how to eat healthy and work out on our trip. Know where you want to go and gather your resources to get there. Nothing is as powerful as self-motivation.

Changes

If you want a different outcome, number on the scale, level of fitness or better numbers from the lab, change your behavior. Albert Einstein, who was probably smarter than a lot of us, said that the definition of insanity was doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. I agree and yet, I can remember years of my life that I lived that way. A lot of us do. In this era of profound changes to what we know as normal, make some positive changes to be better. Take the new lessons learned from every day being different now and just let go of old negative behaviors and make the positive changes that will bring you out of this time as a better, more fit, healthier person. Go against the grain. Do healthy.

 

 

 

Advertisements

Fat and Your Future

wp-1585440198424767529677480924997.png

Evolution of a Society

I started working in long term care facilities, or nursing homes, many years ago. At that time almost all of our residents were elderly people with medical problems. In recent years I worked in two other nursing homes and guess what. A large number of the residents were relatively young, but obese, so obese that they simply could not care for themselves at home. I work in a different environment now, assisted living, where our residents do not have medical problems significant enough to require skilled nursing care. I do not have a single young, obese resident. When a young person becomes morbidly obese they may just skip over assisted living and go straight to a nursing home if their medical problems skyrocket out of control to the point that they require skilled nursing care. Even if you maintain good health into old age, if you are morbidly obese, the day is most likely coming that a nursing home is your only option. Simple tasks of daily living become all but impossible for the morbidly obese if they have medical problems that are even slightly debilitating. Excess weight can make the difference in remaining in your home for your golden years or living in a nursing home. While I do believe that nursing homes are a blessing for those that need them, if I had to choose, I would always choose to live in my home.

The Simple Things

There has been a ill-informed mindset for many years that advanced age always means dependency on others for your personal needs. This is not true. We have accepted this as the norm and it simply is not. We become debilitated by our choices more than anything else. We decide what we will eat and how much exercise and sleep that we get. We may have some genetics that work against us, but even those can be managed in a positive manner. I have known Type 1 diabetics who managed their diabetes well, taking only minimum amounts of insulin. I have also known Type 2 diabetics who managed their diabetes so well with good nutrition and exercise that they took no medications whatsoever. I have also personally known diabetics who ate cake frosting by the tub and spent a lot of their life in ICU. If the latter group lives to old age, they will almost certainly develop medical problems that will make it necessary to live in a nursing home. Some of these people are very young and some of them will be young when they arrive in their home away from home, a long-term care facility. As the amputations begin and mobility begins to slip away, the simple act of taking a shower will require assistance or even complete care. Going to the bathroom may become treacherous, putting the individual at great risk for falls, so even that previously private moment will require someone else to accomplish and that last shred of pride can be taken away. While caregivers are supposed to always protect an individuals dignity, the mere act of requiring help in the bathroom is humbling, to say the least. If you require assistance, then you may not be able to stay in the bathroom alone for your bowel movement. At least you won’t be lonely, right?

Recent Developments

In the year 2000, the percentage of those entering American nursing homes who were moderately to severely obese was 14.7 percent. In 2010, it was 25 percent. In 2018, 28 percent. The most significant increase was among women and the most severely obese residents were among the youngest. The most severely obese residents also suffered more chronic medical conditions. Special equipment is required to handle some of these residents which adds to medical costs. Things that we never consider are routine requirements for the morbidly obese. They even need longer needles and larger blood pressure cuffs. Obesity is expensive. About 30-40 referrals are usually involved in placement for the morbidly obese.

Wisdom

I’ve heard it said that all we’ve got is time. I’ve also heard that time will pass either way. In this context, I take that to mean that as time passes, we will make choices that will create our bodies and lives. So, if we create a bit of our bodies and our lives every day then let’s create something good. I’ll never forget when I first began lifting heavy weights with David training me. I asked him, “How long will “it” take?” … (let that soak in a minute…) He kindly responded, “The rest of your life.” and it will. Every day, living my life at my optimum, healthiest level to build muscle and health will be a lifetime project. Time will pass. I intend to be independent until the day I die at a very old age. That is a goal.

Nutrition

We write at length about avoiding empty calories, which are fattening, nutritional bombs. They pack on the pounds and do not repair your body or provide the nutrients that you need. David wrote an article entitled Obese Yet Malnourished that describes this type of eating. It’s deadly. You will starve and develop all kinds of illness if you live this way. Eat nutrient dense food and be healthy. This is just whole foods, nothing magical. Eat meat and vegetables and avoid added sugars. Simple.

Exercise

Go to your doctor and get approved to exercise. He can also tell you what exercise is best for you. If you sit on your behind for the rest of your life, there will be way too much behind and not nearly enough life.

Rest

Find a way to get some sleep. You can tell if you’re getting enough. When you’re rested, life makes more sense, even the hard times, and you are better able to get through those times. In the good times, you will be able to enjoy them. You will find yourself smiling more and things will just be easier. Catch some ZZZ’s.

Destress

With all the troubles that can confront us, this is a tough one. The best way to destress is to have good health habits. They will make you stronger and more confident. Confidence is necessary to get through the hard times. You will have a feeling of control that you wouldn’t have otherwise. Even if you can’t control whatever is bothering you, you can think well enough to make strategic plans when you are well-rested. Exercise changes your chemistry to naturally center you in difficult times.

The Rest of Your Life

If you are reading this and you are overweight, with your doctor’s approval, lose the weight. Your mobility and overall health is at risk. In order to remain independent and self-sufficient, you must be healthy. Do you really want to live in a nursing home and depend on others for your most personal needs? I have discovered that life really does get better with age. The trick to that is simply that YOU have to get better with age. When you get better, life gets better. Start today, it’s the first day of the rest of your life.

Bacon Wrapped Guacamole Stuffed Chicken

screenshot_20200208-124627_chrome4271565191366949495.jpg

Serves 4

Calories 338

Net Carbs 2.3 grams

Fat 17.5 grams

Protein 44.5 grams

Ingredients

4 (6 ounce) chicken breasts, butterflied or pounded

salt and pepper to taste

1/2 cup guacamole

8 slices bacon

Lay chicken flat and season with salt and pepper and spread 1/4 of guacamole on each and roll up and wrap in two slices of bacon each.

Bake at 400F til bacon is crispy and chicken is cooked, about 20-30 minutes, and broil for a few minutes at the end turning to crisp all the bacon.

Stick To Your Program

wp-15802645060845627753939273954517.png

Most of my life I would start a “diet” and/or exercise program that would last a week or two or maybe three, but honestly I don’t think any of them made it beyond three weeks. I thought that I wanted to be fit but the truth is, I didn’t want it enough now, did I? That’s what it comes down to, what do we want the most?

What makes us commit and follow a program diligently? By way of trial and error and finally finding David’s Way, I have learned a few things. Quite often we take on too much, too fast. You know, the “I’m not eating anything except cabbage soup until I’m skinny.” mentality…it will insure failure. This all or nothing thinking exhausts our best efforts early and there is no energy left for the long haul. When I first began lifting heavy weights, David had me on a short program because I was neither fit enough nor did I have the dedicated mindset to do the long program that I do now. I would have gotten exhausted or hurt and burnt out and quit. Take it easy and set a goal to lose about one pound per week. Think about it this way, losing one pound per week is progress. If you set your goal too high and quit, there is no progress and you will most likely rebound and gain. Your health and fitness will suffer.

It is common for people to try to do something that they hate in the hopes that they will somehow magically learn to love it or become brainwashed into being an Olympian by “Just Do It.” Honestly, if you hate running, for God’s sake don’t run. If you are afraid of putting your face in the water, don’t swim laps. Do something that feels right. Do something that you can work into your life. While I swam laps for years, it was a true aggravation. I had a membership in a great facility but it took my entire day to drive there, shower, swim for two hours, shower, do my hair and make-up and drive home. Although I loved the water, it was impractical to do this and sometimes I would miss going to the pool for weeks and get depressed and eat everything in sight for days. It didn’t work. I could never maintain fitness for very long doing something that just took over my life. Now I have my gym at home. I just go downstairs and get to it. Other than my weights there is no special clothing or accessories required. I used to carry a bag full of junk to the pool. It was so cumbersome, suit, goggles, fins, swim block. shampoo, conditioner, bodywash, face cleanser, make-up, hair dryer and hair products. Prepping to go to the pool was an ordeal. Now, I pull on my favorite leggings, and a tank top usually, because the front squat requires bare arms with lots of chalk, and I’m lifting. No prep, no drive. I always wanted to be this kind of fit, strong and muscular, so the effort required is so worth it. I love what I’m doing, and it’s convenient, so I do it.

Sometimes people choose to do an activity that is actually painful, in a bad way. The old adage, “No pain, no gain.” is ridiculous. If I feel pain in my workout, I’m doing something wrong. I stop and figure out what I did wrong and then resume. There is a profound difference in “hard” and “painful”. If your workout is painful, you should, and most likely will, stop.

In the “All or Nothing” school of thought there are those who will abandon their program unless they can do it perfectly all the time. I’ve got to tell you if I only worked out when I did it perfectly, I might not work out very often. While perfection is not a requirement, persistence is. I work out when I don’t want to work out. I work out when I want to work out. I work out when it’s convenient and when it’s not convenient at all. I work out when I feel strong and when I feel weak. My ego sometimes takes a beating when I feel weak but then other times, I may feel weak and set a PR. I have increased my deadlift by about 175 pounds in two years and that has involved a lot of imperfect sessions.

Time Management is imperative to have longevity in your workouts. When I first began lifting, David told me to decide what days that I would work out and consider working out to be my job those days. I had to commit to do it and then manage everything else around my workout. I do that to this day. There is a saying, “Life Happens.” Yes, it does and you may have variations occur in your life that will cause some variations in your schedule. The important thing is to know that you will get it done, all of it, on a regular basis. Consistency is key to making positive changes in your body and health.

Write it down. From the very beginning of learning to lift, David has had me write everything. I write the day, date, time, calories, protein, carbs, hydration, sleep and state of mind. I write my exact workout down as it should be and then write exactly what I accomplish. I write random thoughts because our mind will either make us or break us in the middle of a hard workout.

Whatever you do, get rid of distractions. I put my phone on silent and only allow a limited number of people to ring through. I let my dogs out and back in and make sure they’ve been watered and fed. My adult, special needs son knows that I will deal with anything that he might want after my workout. I generally won’t even answer my door during my workout. You have to make it a priority and focus.

While safety is of the utmost importance, don’t ever assume that you can’t do something. When I first started lifting, I feared that 100 pound deadlift. I believed that I could do it because I had faith in my trainer and he seemed to believe that I could. Now, at more than double that, I know that if I had limited myself with anxiety, I would never have progressed to where I am and there would be no hope of attaining the goals that I want to attain in the future. Where your mind goes, your body will follow. Take your mind to victory.

Ask for input from respectable, reliable sources. Read everything that you can find on your chosen activity and nutrition. Study to be healthy and fit. When you stay mentally engaged with a subject, ever learning and digging out new information, you will stay physically engaged.

Avoid people who want you to abandon your health initiative. Sometimes these people are in our own homes. If that is the case, you simply must control the extent to which they can control you. One time when I first began eating healthy a former family member ordered pizza within 15 minutes of learning of my new commitment. When my home was destroyed by tornadoes and I had my Iron laying on the ground beside my car to go to the motel with me, he tried to take it. No way was I being separated from my weights. They saw me through a very trying time and strengthened me to make extreme changes in my life that were long overdue. Choose your friends and extended family wisely and even then, go your own way.

Don’t ever think that you will get this done. No, you won’t. Fitness is a lifetime commitment. David says that we don’t own our level of fitness, we’re only paying rent. Don’t pay your rent and you get evicted.  Just accept that this is not a get fit quick project. If you are to be truly successful at heathy, this is the rest of your life.

Everyone struggles with the choice between instant gratification and working towards long-range goals. I remember the night that I cried because I wanted to eat chocolate ice cream.  I had thrown every other food out of the house that I saw as a stumbling block. That forgotten ice cream was the only source of refined carbs in my house. I had forgotten to throw that out. As I hung on the door of my refrigerator freezer and sobbed, I had to ask myself, “What do I want MORE, ice cream or health?” I made my decision that night and have never turned back. My progress has not always been linear or perfect but when I abandoned refined carbs and added sugars, I was through with them and my health testifies to my healthy nutrition. You simply have to decide. That does not mean that it will be easy. It means that you will be victorious. I know your struggles and so does David . We have both been there. What I can tell you about this is that it will get easier over time. Now I would no more consider eating ice cream than I would consider bungee jumping off of the Empire State Building. Some things just don’t make sense. It’s not healthy.

As you go forward with your health initiative, read this website. We have articles here on many topics that can help you on your journey. We have all kinds of healthy, delicious, sugar-free recipes ranging from pizza to brownies and many exotic dishes. Go to the search box and search for what you want to read. We’re here to answer your questions and help in any way that we can and this website is always free. If you would like to see an article on a specific topic let us know. We will research for you. If there is a recipe that you would like to have or see made over into a healthy version, just notify us in comments or contact or start a conversation in the Forum.

Let 2020 be your year to learn healthy. What have you got to lose?

 

Disordered Eating

Eating disorders are a common topic of discussion among nutrition minded people but few of us have heard the term, “Disordered Eating”. It can be a precursor to a full-blown eating disorder which can be life-threatening. If you believe that you have an eating disorder, seek professional help immediately.

In a culture that is obsessed with appearances, many of us develop quirks and strange habits and rituals centered around food. Because we are blessed with more than enough in the United States, we are possibly the most likely to develop these habits. Symptoms of Disordered Eating include, but may not be limited to, (1)

1-Self-worth being based almost exclusively on the size, weight or shape of your body. While we all want to look good, our value is not determined by our bodies. If that was the case, an “evil dictator” that looked great would be more valuable than an average- looking person who is loved and appreciated by everyone who knows them. This is ridiculous. If you believe your worth to be equal to your looks, seek help today.

2-Body dysmorphia or a discrepancy or disturbance in the way you see your body. While this is common in full-blown eating disorders it may show up before they develop. It is a warning sign that you may be susceptible to a disorder. An example is “feeling fat” even though you are not.

3-Excessive exercise can be a symptom. David and I both work out hard. We make it a priority. It is an important aspect of our lives. The difference in good, hard, regular workouts and this symptom is regular programming. If you are doing a recognized program that has been designed by a trainer, you are okay if you have cleared this with  your doctor. You know that you are in trouble when you can’t stop with that. Excessive is when you go beyond normal. My normal, two years into heavy weight training is much more than what I started with but it is still a set program. When it is done, it is done and I don’t want to do more. If you can’t stop exercising, something is wrong.

4-Anxiety about certain foods or food groups can be a symptom. David has written extensively about the danger of fad diets. Often someone says to me, “I’m doing keto and I feel terrible.” Of course you do. It’s a fad diet. We advocate eating from all food groups and merely eliminating added sugars and simple carbs from the diet. We encourage you to eat good, healthy complex carbs. We do.

5-If you have such rigid rules concerning your nutrition that you sometimes find yourself unable to eat in a variety of situations, you may have a problem. I believe that you can almost always find something to eat in most situations. It may not be a full meal but you should be able to find something to eat when you are hungry. I can go into a convenience store and buy a pack of nuts. At a social event where I may not want most of the food served, there is almost always a good protein source available. I look for meat and cheese. There’s usually fruit or vegetables available. If you find yourself at Aunt Martha’s unable to eat a bite of anything, you may have a problem. While you might want to wait until you get home for the bulk of your calories, there should be something there to eat.

A key component of disordered eating is that, as David has said, we have abandoned the way that people used to eat. There was little to no anxiety about eating when we ate a well-rounded breakfast based on protein and complex carbs, had a sane protein based lunch and a dinner that was prepared at home that consisted of a protein, a starch such as a potato, and green and/or yellow vegetables. Some people added bread and even that was not a problem because there was no dessert most nights and never in the middle of the day. Desserts were for special occasions or at the very most, the weekend. There would be just enough for the family to have a modest serving or two and when it was gone, it was gone.

We couldn’t develop disordered eating under normal circumstances eating that way. Our eating was planned. It didn’t require a lot of decision-making. A problem today is that we eat randomly. There is no set pattern and every meal, or the daily graze of eating from awakening to slumber, is a spontaneous choice. Have you ever been setting at one meal thinking about what you would eat at your next? If we plan menu’s and shop according to those menus, we don’t think that way. It eases our national obsession with food. It also saves tons of money. If you plan your menus and buy your food from those menus, you remove spontaneous purchases. Your bank account will show the difference and so will your waistline.

 I recently read a statement on a weight loss social media app that said that “I hope this is the year that I find the discipline that I’ve been lacking.” If you develop good nutritional habits, planning your meals and shopping accordingly, you will need less discipline. Yesterday I got to work and thought “Oh boy, I don’t have enough food with me.” I eat a specific number of calories to fuel my workouts and don’t go without eating. I ate the two ounces of mixed nuts that I had with me and when hunger hit, I began to plunder through my backpack. Wow! Was I ever surprised! I had gotten ready for work at light speed, throwing stuff into my bag in a hurry. As it turned out, I had a lean ground beef patty, a baked sweet potato, an apple and full-fat Greek yogurt in my bag along with those nuts. I had plenty of food because I have developed good nutritional habits. Throwing that good nutrition into my backpack was something that I did on auto-pilot. While I never eat the nutritional bombs that are frequently laying around my nurses station, without good habits if you find yourself hungry at work those Krispy Kremes might look good. Plan you meals and you will have little to no wiggle room and are less likely to develop disordered eating because you will be adhering to known rules of good nutrition.

A problem that I have noticed is that sometimes people specialize in “cheating”. They try to see just how much they can get away with. Let me ask you, who are you cheating? I know a woman whose doctor put her on a reduced calorie regimen and the first night that she didn’t have access to double dessert she ordered a pizza. Her statement to the other people in the room was “The diet backfired!” She said these words with venom. She was quite pleased that she had managed to get those extra calories of an entire large pizza with the works. This is how we are. It’s so much easier to just do the right thing where our nutrition is concerned than to straddle the fence, waiting and wanting for someone to fix us. She went to the doctor and refused his advice. After consuming copious amounts of simple carbs, getting our fix and striking back in fury at the very idea that anyone would try to tell us what to eat, we wonder why we’re not ready for swimsuit season and try to wrangle a fad diet to get what we want. We feel worthless, believe ourselves to be unattractive and try to exercise ourselves to death. This is disordered eating. It would have been so much better to just listen to our doctor and our grandmothers in the first place and just eat a sensible amount of good nutritious food and work out responsibly.

The tools to navigate good nutrition and healthy habits are at your fingertips. This website is free. Use it. Get to know it. Talk to your doctor and get an approved exercise that you can do. Discuss nutrition with your doctor and then comply with what he says. We’re always here to assist you in any way that we can. Eat healthy, be healthy. Always remember, “You are what you eat.”

(1) https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/contemporary-psychoanalysis-in-action/201402/disordered-eating-or-eating-disorder-what-s-the

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year and decade to all of our incredible readers around the globe. Brenda Sue and I greatly appreciate each and everyone of you!

In the last year, we have grown our website to include:

  • Calorie Counter Pro Menu   With this menu function, you can easily enter your personal information to have your daily caloric needs figured for you. This feature is entirely private. No one, not even Brenda Sue or myself, can ever see your private information which you enter. Your privacy is safe with us as we adhere to all U.S. HIPAA privacy laws to protect you.
  • You can estimate your body fat percentage with our new Body Fat Estimator which is a pictorial guide that displays what different body fat ranges appear on the male and female bodies. We always advise concentrating on achieving a healthy body fat percentage over trying to randomly lose weight to a specific number on the scale.
  • Our new Calorie / Macro-nutrient Chart can help you figure your caloric and macro-nutrient needs with about 600 common food items. This feature is a work in progress and will continue to expand.
  • Curious about how many calories different activities cause you to burn. You can find it all, from walking to lawn mowing, on our Activity Caloric Burn Chart.
  • We have broken down and segregated our articles into their own menu categories. We will be working at making this feature even easier to navigate in the future for you.

I began building David’s Way to Health and Fitness about one year and seven months ago. About two and a half months after I began this website, I asked Brenda Sue to write a few pieces for me to give a woman’s perspective to the topics we address in our articles. She jumped right in and has been a tremendous asset ever since. Together, we have built up this website, despite many personal challenges that have jumped into our path’s along the way. Brenda Sue had her house blown down around her by a tornado, and then she had a major career change a few months later. For me, I have been a care taker to a family member with liver cancer for almost the last year , and very recently my dear wife has been diagnosed with breast cancer and will be undergoing a double mastectomy on Monday, January 6th.

Despite our own personal challenges in life, along with working demanding full time jobs atop of our health, nutrition and fitness writing, Brenda Sue and I have authored almost 700 articles between us, and we will continue to keep chugging away at this labor of love. It is only the two of us who have created this website. Our work has now reached 92 countries around the world.

My pledge to our readers is the information in this website will always be free to our readers and subscribers. I will never charge you a penny to access and read our work. That being said;

I have toyed with beginning a shopping feature in order to help offset the cost of operating this website, and to help pay the ever piling medical bills that keep coming in for my wife’s breast cancer. This shopping feature, once incorporated will include nutritional supplements and other items that are health and fitness related.

Again, my pledge is to keep all the articles and other features of this website entirely free to our readers and subscribers. Our mission is to help as many people in achieving fit and healthy body’s as we can.

Subscription to David’s Way to Health and Fitness is free and easy. Each new article we publish can come straight to your email, and again, this is all free to you. Please, if you enjoy our work, have benefited from our articles, share our David’s Way to Health and Fitness with all of your family and friends.

May each and everyone of you have a wonderful new year ahead of you.

Quest Chocolate Chip Cookie Review

I have tried other Quest brand protein bars and despite all the favorable hype I have seen regarding them on a couple weight loss social media apps, I never cared for the very strong, over powering artificial sweetness I tasted with each that I have tried. However, I understand and accept that everyone has different likes and dislikes. You might just love this artificial taste.

I do not buy protein bars or cookies very often as they often have an off taste from the vitamins the producer has incorporated into the ingredients. However, while out on the road in my semi yesterday, this product caught my eye during a stop at a service plaza. I almost walked on past it since I do not care for their protein bars, but the look of a chocolate chip cookie that has 15 grams protein, 4 net grams of carbs, less than one gram of sugar while containing 9 grams of fiber caught my attention. For all intents and purposes, the nutritional values meet what I look for in foods, and after all, who can resist a good chewy chocolate chip cookie that is also a healthier choice than any other cookies stocked on the truck stop shelves.

I finished my purchase and walked back out to my truck for the final leg of my 945 mile trip. Once back behind the wheel of my truck, I slipped it into gear and began unwrapping the cookie as I was merging back onto the interstate highway. The cookie looked delicious. It had a soft texture to it which was a bonus for me too. I was anticipating a little something tasty and healthy with a hot cup of coffee to hold me over until I got home as I took my first bite.

OK, at first bite, the cookie was soft and firm enough to be chewy! I have always loved a good chewy chocolate chip cookie over those that are crisp. Just a personal preference of mine. The initial taste was pleasant enough. The flavor kind of reminded me of a chewy Chip’s Ahoy. Except, it had a sickening artificially sweet undertone, that actually became over powering with each additional bite. To be honest, I am not 100% sure, but I cannot help but to assume this sweetness comes from their use of stevia as a sweetener. I know it does not come from the erythritol as I bake and cook with erythritol products at least once or twice a week.

You may like this taste, I do not. Again, it is just a matter of personal taste and opinion. There is no wrong or right to what flavors we like or do not like. But for me, Quest took a perfectly good cookie and ruined it with whatever the ingredient is that causes this over bearing sweetness. In fairness, I must say that by my having been entirely sugar free for a few years now, my taste for sweet treats has declined. Just like eating a low sodium diet, it gets where just a little salt can totally ruin a meal for me too. The last I will say on this sweetness is the taste in my mouth did not leave for quite some time. Thank god I had a few pieces of spearmint gum to finally get rid of it, I was tempted to pull over and get a mouthful of dirt to make it go away…   🙂

Quest Chocolate Chip Cookies are nutritionally sound, and you might really enjoy them. Try these before buying some sugar laden cookie that will only serve to fatten your belly while spiking your blood sugar and insulin. These cookies might fit your needs for a sugar free sweet treat on occasion. I feel if there was no stevia in these cookies, they would be a really good, wholesome snack to treat yourself with. For $3.74 for one cookie, you are also not likely to gorge yourself on them.

Ingredients:

Protein Blend (Milk Protein Isolate, Whey Protein Isolate), Butter (Cream, Natural Flavor), Soluble Corn Fiber, Erythritol, Palm Oil, Unsweetened Chocolate, Calcium Caseinate, Natural Flavors, Water, Cocoa Butter. Contains less than 2% of the following: Sunflower Lecithin, Sea Salt, Baking Soda, Sodium Caseinate, Xanthan Gum, Steviol Glycosides (Stevia)

Nutrition Facts:

Serving Size: 1 cookie

Calories: 250

Total fat: 17 grams

Saturated fat: 10 grams

Trans fats: 0 grams

Cholesterol: 30 mg

Sodium: 220 mg

Total Carbs: 19 grams

Net Carbs: 4 grams

Fiber: 9 grams

Total sugar less than 1 gram

Added sugar: 0 grams

Erythritol 6 grams

Protein: 15 grams

Vitamin D: 0 mcg

Calcium: 150 mg

Iron: .4 mg

Potassium: 100 mg

 

Avoid a Stroke!

screenshot_20191128-215516296902324974137755.png

What Is A Stroke?

A stroke occurs when the blood supply to part of your brain is interrupted or reduced. The lack of oxygen carrying blood causes the death of brain cells in mere minutes. A stroke is a medical emergency and immediate treatment is mandatory. Early treatment may reduce brain damage and increase your chance of survival.

Who Is Vulnerable?

Anyone can have a stroke. Never think that because you are young or at a perfect weight that you are safe from this destroyer.

Symptoms You May Experience

1-Trouble speaking or understanding what others are saying to you.

2-Paralysis or numbness of the face, arm or leg. This often affects only one side of your body.

3-Problems seeing in one or both eyes. You may have reduced vision or you may see double.

4-Headache- A sudden severe headache that may be accompanied by vomiting, dizziness or altered consciousness may indicate you are having a stroke.

5-Trouble walking.

Seek immediate medical attention if you notice any signs or symptoms of a stroke.

If you think someone else is having a stroke remember the acronyme “F.A.S.T” and do this:

F.ace-Ask the person to smile. Does one side if the face droop?

A.rms-Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward? Is one arm unable to rise?

S.peech-Ask the person to repeat a simple phrase. Is his speech slurred or strange?

T.ime-If you observe ANY of these signs, call 911 right away.

There are five different types of stroke but the end result of all of them is death of brain cells. Quick medical attention may limit the number of brain cells lost.

Lifestyle Risk Factors

1-Being overweight or obese

2-Physical inactivity

3-Heavy or binge drinking

4-Use of illegal drugs such as cocaine and methamphetamine

Here at David’s Way we teach a healthy lifestyle that is designed to alleviate overweight and physical inactivity. We always discourage you from drinking alcohol because of the empty calories and the tendency that it has to lower inhibitions and enable you to binge eat and drink after just a small amount. Illegal drugs are never part of a healthy lifestyle.

Medical Risk Factors

1-High blood pressure

2-Cigarette smoking or exposure to secondhand smoke

3-High cholesterol

4-Diabetes

5-Obstructive sleep apnea

6-Cardiovascular disease

7-Personal or family history of stroke, heart attack or transient ischemic attack

David’s Way is diabetic friendly and since we discourage sodium laden processed foods, it may help you with high blood pressure. Obstructive sleep apnea can be caused by excess tissue, quite often fat, pressing in on your airway. Lose the weight and see if that helps your sleep apnea. Excess weight and inactivity can exacerbate cardiovascular disease and make it worse. If you have a personal history of, or genetic tendency towards, stroke talk to your doctor about weight loss and exercise.

People over age 55 have a higher risk of stroke. Get healthy early in life and practice good health habits for the rest of your life to take the edge off of this risk factor. Men, African Americans and women who use birth control or hormone therapies that contain estrogen are also at greater risk.

In order to decrease your risk of stroke it’s mandatory that you control high blood pressure and lower the amount of saturated fat in your diet. Quit smoking and get your diabetes under control. Some people can eventually come off of diabetic medications, with their doctor’s approval, when they lose weight and become attentive to their diet, while adding in some doctor approved activity. If you have sleep apnea, do whatever you have to do to fix that. Weight loss will help. Your doctor may prescribe a device that delivers positive airway pressure to keep your airway open while you sleep. Your doctor may also prescribe medications that can help with Obstructive Sleep Apnea.

We always encourage you to be proactive concerning your health. Be vigilant in your efforts to decrease your risk of stroke. I recently read about a 38 year old female who was an avid runner who had a devastating stroke. She had always been careful to eat a healthy diet to fuel her running but at a point, she said that she let her nutrition slip, a little. She believed that this decision was crucial to the devastating event that changed her life forever, a stroke. She has made a good recovery and her former high level of fitness is believed to have enabled her to come back much quicker and stronger than most people. The moral of the story here is get healthy and STAY healthy. Don’t give a stroke a chance. Be a fanatic about your health. Don’t let anyone sway you. Make every effort to avoid this life stealing thief in the night.

As a result of trying to be healthy to avoid a stroke, you just might build the healthiest body that you’ve ever lived in, and look good doing it. That, my friends, is a win/win situation.