Friday, November 23, 2012

Friday's Letters

Dear Class, Having you just one day this week was the best! 2 more weeks, finals, and we are done! Dear Turkey Run, 6 years and counting, and I always love it as a way to start my Thanksgiving morning. Dear Basketball Season, The time has arrived! And I couldn't be more excited. Let's get it, cavemen. Dear Family, Just a reminder that I'm grateful for each and every one of you. Thanks for being the examples you are and loving me no matter what.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Stress Relief

As unfortunate as it is, the holidays often result in some stressful times. Whether it be planning bit parties, dealing with crazy schedules or hanging out with your great aunt from Kansas that loves to pinch your cheeks.

So here are some acupressure points you can use to reduce stress. The great part? You can do these to yourself at any time and any place! So try them out!

How to: Firm pressure is the most fundamental technique. Use thumbs, fingers, palms, the side of the hand, or knuckles to apply steady, stationary pressure. To relax an area or relieve pain, apply pressure gradually and hold without any movement for several minutes at a time. Each point will feel somewhat different when you press it; some points feel tense, while others are often sore or ache when pressed. How much pressure to apply to any point depends on how fit you are. A general guideline to follow is that the pressure should be firm enough so that it hurts a little. The more developed the muscles are, the more pressure you should apply. If you feel extreme sensitivity or pain, gradually decrease the pressure until you find a balance between pain and pleasure. Do not continue to press a point that is excruciatingly painful. Usually, however, if you firmly hold the point long enough (up to 2 minutes using the middle finger with your index and ring fingers on either side as support), the pain will diminish.
It's important to drink plenty of warm water after the massage, to help clear away toxic substances in our body . 

Relieves Headaches:
Relieves Headache

Improves mental power. Soothes Stress. Improves visual acuity:
Improves mental power. Soothes Stress. Improves visual acuity. 

Tranquilizes the mind and Relieves mental distress:
Tranquilizes the mind and Relieves mental distress.

In one of my classes there was a group presentation on acupressure as a relaxation technique, and it was a hit! Check out this website for more ideas and options. 

Hope you have a stress free Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 12, 2012

Treats Trimmed Down

Cookies, quick breads and muffins all seem to make their appearance more frequently this time of year. So instead of getting a fat and sugar overload, here are some swaps that cut calories but preserve flavor...

Instead of 2 cups all purpose flour
Try 1 cup whole wheat flour + 1 cup all purpose flour
Best for pancakes, muffins, cookies, biscuits, some quick breads
Benefit Shaves off about 50 calories and adds 3 grams of protein
Add 1 or 2 tbsp water to the batter for easier mixing. Let sit for 15 minutes to absorb the liquid. 

Instead of 1 cup oil
Try 1/2 cup oil + 1/2 cup applesauce
Best for quick breads, muffins
Benefit cuts nearly 900 calories
You can also use pumpkin or dried plum puree instead of applesauce.


Instead of 1 cup sugar
Try 1/2 cup sugar
Best for quick breads, muffins, scones, puddings
Benefit saves 387 calories
Bread can be less tender. If you need more sweetness, add a glaze. 

Instead of 4 eggs
Try 2 eggs + 2 egg whites
Best for quick breads, cookies
Benefit Trims 10 grams of fat
A few extra drops of water will make up for the missing yolks.
(**I will say, personally, I always keep all the eggs in because eggs and egg yolks are good for us! But it is an option.)

Friday, November 9, 2012

Friday's Letters

Dear Daniel, You made it to 18! Congratulations. I love you more than I love broccoli and eggs...and that's saying something! Thanks for being the perfect example of having a heart of gold and a sense of humor that always keeps me laughing. Never change ;) Dear Wellness Center, Thanks for the opportunity to work there next semester. I'm excited to learn and help people get their health back each day! Dear Running, Based off the snow that is falling outside, you'll be happening on the treadmill the next few days. Sorry about that. Dear Tandem Bikers, You get 3 gold stars for making my day when I saw you ride by. You've got it down.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

On the Minute

Here is a new workout for you to try! I did it on the treadmill, but you could also do it at a track or just outside in your neighborhood.

Start with a 10 minute warm up - for me I went on on easy jog, but walking might be good too.

Now you'll be doing 3 minute sets that go like this:
1 minute - brisk walk
1 minute - jog/run
1 minute - sprint

Repeat it 6-7 times, then end with a cool down walk and stretch it out! It's easy to remember, simple to do and it is great because it gets your heart rate up and then down again. Let me know if you try it!

Monday, November 5, 2012

November Eats

Holiday season has arrived! And although some may think that means cookies, holiday parties, hot chocolate and staying indoors, it also means there are some great fall superfoods you can add to your diet. Healthy eating during these holiday months can be tough, but also very worth it. So while you are trying to avoid the leftover Halloween candy calling your name from the pantry or the approaching Thanksgiving holiday, try some of these healthy and satisfying options.

1. SWEET POTATO: Rich in vitamin A and the antioxidant beta-carotene, sweet potatoes can help keep the immune system strong and promote healthy skin. They're also rich in potassium --- with more than a banana -- and a "fiber-rich carbohydrate," says Angela Ginn, R.D., L.D.N., C.D.E., a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

2. CAULIFLOWER: "Most people think cauliflower's a white food so I want to stay away from it," says Ginn, but it's actually a low-calorie source of vitamin C, fiber, folate, potassium and vitamin K. It also packs some of the disease-preventing powers of its cruciferous cousin, broccoli.

3. CRANBERRIES: Anything with such a bright color is sure to pack some powerful health properties, says Ginn. Cranberry antioxidants can help the heart and fight bacteria, most famously to prevent urinary tract infections.

4. WINTER SQUASH: Winter varieties like acorn and butternut squashes are sweeter than summer squashes like zucchini and can be stored longer, thanks to their thick skins, according to Like sweet potatoes, winter squash is a fantastic source of vitamin A and beta-carotene -- that orange color's a dead giveaway.

5. LEEKS: This relative of the onion is in season from October through May, according to Serious Eats. They are rich in calcium, potassium and folic acid, and may protect against heart problems and prostate cancer, Men's Health reported.

6. TURNIPS: You get two-for-one benefits with turnips, since you can eat both the root and the greens for different health perks (and tastes!). The roots are a good source of immunity-boosting vitamin C and potassium. The leaves, which are similar to kale, according to the New York Times, are rich in vitamins A, K and folate.

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