‘Tis the season to be jolly…is it really?

December 21, 2017

It’s the holiday season. The lights are twinkling, children seem happier and mankind rejoices. The world is a wonderful place this time of year. Peace on earth and goodwill to all. Did you just roll your eyes? I did. For most of us, the holidays are nice, but they also come with extra anxiety, stress and demands for our time that can sometimes push us to our breaking point. You can wax poetic about the true meaning of Christmas while visions of sugarplums dance in your head, but if we get honest, a huge majority is trying to cope without becoming full-blown alcoholics. Here are some ideas that I’ve shared with my already extremely busy clientele that help make this time of year a little bit more jolly: Saying ‘No’ is OK – This time of year usually leads to a lot of invitations to parties and other events. Prioritize the invites and recognize that with almost all of them, you’re under no actual obligation to attend. If you don’t have time to run a booth at the church holiday craft fair, attend The Nutcracker with your friends, man the Salvation Army bucket for a few hours, go to your spouse’s best friend’s holiday party and still get your shopping and your regular life done, it’s OK. The simple response is

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December 7, 2017

We’ve all had them at one time or another: The Bad Boss. It’s not that they’re bad people, it’s that their style of doing things doesn’t click with you and the gulf between your philosophies can quickly become an abyss if you don’t learn how to pro-actively handle your disagreements. You’ve worked hard to get where you are and probably look at your boss and think that they may not deserve to be where they are. That’s OK, but you need to tell yourself to let go of any resentment or your performance could suffer. Whether you’re correct or not about your boss’s ability doesn’t matter. You have to work with the person – and take direction from them – every day. If you are a high performer you don’t want to sit idly by and watch things go in the wrong direction, but approaching your boss when there are differences can be an art form unto itself.

Pre-Confrontation

Put Yourself in Their Shoes – You’re not the only one who has to take direction. Is the direction, policy or initiative they are implementing or enforcing their idea or are they being forced to follow someone else’s lead? Is there somebody above their head pulling strings and you

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November 15, 2017

My friend Sue just finished her second diet ice tea and it’s 10am. Because of work demands, she also consumes about three cups of coffee per day. But nothing to worry, she told me the other day, “everything I consume is sugar free”. Sue is a diet-conscious career woman and even though her waistline continues to widen and her energy is lower than ever she relies on diet drinks, artificial sugar sweeteners, caffeine alongside diet crackers and gums to get her through the day. Sue knows the negative health effects of eating too much sugar, especially “added sugars” like in regular soda, most juices, candy, baked goods, and many commercially-available cereals, just to name a few. She also knows that added sugar is hiding just about everywhere in the grocery store hence why she resorts to “sugar free” everything. It’s true, ingesting refined sugar spikes your blood sugar and insulin, and increases your risk for a whole host of issues (weight gain being the least damaging). The food industry has been adjusting to the growing awareness on this fact and its response to the demand for lower-sugar foods that still taste great, has been artificial sweeteners. The idea behind artificial sweeteners is that you can still get the sweetness, without the calories; like when you have a diet soda versus a regular one. Theoretically, this was going to help people maintain a healthy bod

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October 20, 2017

“Don’t make me angry, Mr. McGhee. You wouldn’t like me when I’m angry.” – Dr. David Banner, opening credits of The Incredible Hulk It’s pretty hard to inspire others if you are walking around with a belly full of anger. Experiencing unjust treatment, hearing criticism, or just not getting what you want when you want it triggers sensations that feel like anger.  Psychologists even recognize boredom as a mild version of anger represented as dissatisfaction with what is happening at a given moment. Anger can be healthy at times but resorting to anger to deal with everyday situation is not the smartest answer. Anger is reactive and often shows up when we have not learned how to understand and deal with our emotions. Anger is not an involuntary emotion although it can feel that way sometimes, but you can regulate it. Instead of getting into uncomfortable situations, making others feel humiliated or angry right back at you, or getting to the point you say something you end up regretting, we can identify what triggers the angry response and figure out how to deal with it. Easier said than done. I know.

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September 19, 2017

Have you ever had one of those situations where you and somebody else experienced the same thing, maybe a concert or dinner, but walked away with not only completely different opinions about how they were, but with a conflicting set of “facts”? How can two people’s perception of things be so different? And, what if you’re the one who is taking in things and processing them in a skewed manner? Our emotional state is often a result of how we perceive situations happening around us. Have you ever asked yourself these questions and reached these conclusions after you faced a negative situation? Why did she do that to me? I don’t deserve that. Why does this keep happening to me? It’s not fair. Why is it so hard to be understood? Nobody understands me. Why are all the good men taken? I’m going to die alone. Often, we ask ourselves these questions to ease our way into victim mode. We assess the situation with emotional blinders and see ourselves as stuck in one place or helpless because of who we perceive ourselves to be in the moment. Maybe you think you’re too nice, too young or

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August 31, 2017

STRESS!!! Its causes are absolutely everywhere. Would you agree? Our natural “fight or flight” stress response can sometimes go a little overboard. It’s supposed to help us escape injury or death in an emergency and then return to normal after we’ve fought or flown. But, that doesn’t happen too much in our society – it becomes a long-term reaction. It becomes chronic. You’ve probably heard of the main stress hormone, called “cortisol.” It’s released from your adrenal glands in response to stress. It’s also naturally high in the morning to get you going, and slowly fades during the day so you can sleep. Did you know that too-high levels of cortisol are associated with belly fat, poor sleep, brain fog, high blood pressure, high blood sugar, and even lowers your immunity? Talk about motivation killers! Do you experience any of these? Well, then read on because I have a list of foods, nutrients and lifestyle recommendations to help you lower this stress hormone naturally!

Foods and nutrients to lower cortisol

Let’s start with one of the biggies that increase your cortisol… sugar.

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August 15, 2017

Do you get hot flashes? Are they mostly at night? Do they set the bed on fire (but not in a sexy way)? Let’s get you some solutions! Before we do that, just some quick info on why hot flashes occur so we can try to affect the root cause of these hormonal symptoms.

What causes hot flashes?

As you can imagine it’s all about hormonal balance (or imbalance). During the menstruating years your estrogen allows for your ovaries to respond when “luteinizing hormone” (LH) says to release those eggs every month. When it gets to the point where your estrogen levels start dropping (i.e. perimenopause) those ovaries start to simply ignore the LH. And guess what your body’s response to this is? It releases adrenaline! This causes your body to heat up for a few minutes until it cools itself back down.

What triggers hot flashes?

You may have

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August 1, 2017

Bloating is generally the result of not being able to properly digest foods.  These not-so-digested foods feel like they’re just sitting around causing discomfort and a general feeling of being stuffed and “gassy”. It can happen at any age, but if it seems to be more frequent as you’re getting older it may well be due to your stomach’s reduced ability to produce enough acid for proper digestion. Normally, when we eat our stomach cells release more acid, which is crucial for so many digestive processes like breaking down foods and activating enzymes.  As we age this process can become less efficient. Pair that with constant anti-acid use and the result can feel like it’s wreaking havoc on the rest of the digestive system. Unfortunately, this can have wide-ranging effects on all of our digestion abilities “downstream” often resulting in bloating.

Bloating Reason #1:

Sometimes our bodies are (or become more as we age) sensitive to the fiber in certain fruits or veggies.  This can also occur when we introduce new ones into our diet as it may take a while for our body to get used to them.

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Posted in Healthy Tricks, Recipes by Mari Pizarro | Tags: