Spring Clean your Eating Habits by Ditching Food Triggers and Mindless Snacking

Written by lyricsmama on March 6, 2017 – 7:09 PM -

Cues to eat are everywhere – and we cave. Food psychology expert, author, tells how to take back control of when & where we eat & trim down for spring in this food-saturated world.

We’ve all been there: The mere sight of the Starbucks logo makes us crave a caramel latte. Ditto craving a chocolate-glazed treat when driving by Dunkin Donuts at the end of each work day.

These, along with dozens, if not hundreds, of other sights, sounds and smells in the world around are our food triggers, says Susan Peirce Thompson, Ph.D., author of the new book Bright Line Eating, releasing March 21 (Hay House).

They cue us to eat, whether we’re hungry or not. And they are one of our waistline’s biggest enemies.

We are fighting off food triggers all day long, says Susan, who is an Adjunct Associate Professor of Brain and Cognitive Sciences at the University of Rochester and an expert in the psychology of eating.

Our culture promotes eating at any time of the day, in any imaginable location. Long gone are meal times at the family table. Which means that nearly every situation has become a cue to eat.

But mindlessly putting food in our mouth as a knee-jerk reaction to triggers not only leads to overeating and weight gain, but actually rewires the brain to create constant cravings. In a vicious cycle, the more we give in to food triggers, the more we have them.

 

But breaking the cycle is relatively easy once you’re aware of it – and spring cleaning your eating habits to ditch food triggers away may be just what you need to slim down for the season ahead.

Here’s how:

Eat regular meals

A steady schedule of three meals a day at regular mealtimes—breakfast, lunch, and dinner —trains the brain to eat the right things at the right times and to pass up the wrong things in between.

Establish food-free zones

Draw up a list of places you tend to eat beyond the table: your car, the couch, your office desk… Designate them food-free zones – and stick to it.

Practice an attitude of gratitude

Research shows that something as simple as expressing gratitude will replenish willpower. Gratitude also helps shift the focus from what you want, or crave, to what you have – making it easier for you to drive right by that donut shop as you count your blessings.

Gradually you’ll take back control, clean away those triggers and be the only one deciding where and when you eat.

Susan Peirce Thompson, Ph.D. is an Adjunct Associate Professor of Brain and Cognitive Sciences at the University of Rochester and an expert in the psychology of eating. She is President of the Institute for Sustainable Weight Loss and CEO of Bright Line Eating Solutions, a company dedicated to sharing the psychology and neuroscience of sustainable weight loss and helping people live Happy, Thin, and Free.

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3 Ways to Serve After School Snack Kids Will Love

Written by lyricsmama on March 8, 2016 – 11:37 AM -

Can you feel it? Can you hear it? It’s SPRING ON THE WAY!!! Soon the kids will be outside running around and getting rid of some of that pent up winter energy, with that comes the many calls of “I’m hungry!”.

Below are a few easy ways to serve up healthy snacks that your kids will actually eat. These three strategies are easy to plan and execute, and you can adjust portion sizes as needed depending on whether there’s a sports practice, lesson, or if dinner will be later than normal.

After School Snacks

Make a snack box or drawer: Clean out the junk drawer or create a special snack box in the kitchen and turn it over to the kids. Fill it with an assortment of healthy, mom-approved snacks – think granola bars (look for ones that are lower in added sugars and higher in fiber and protein), mini Larabars, portioned out bags of trail mix, or dried fruit- and let kids help themselves to one after school.

Serve up a cheese plate.  Plate up a mix of sliced, shredded, or diced cheese; crackers, pita chips, or tortillas; raw snap peas, sliced cucumber, or cherry tomatoes; and sliced apples, grapes, or dried apricots. Let them help themselves to the assortment.

Blend up a smoothie.  Let the kids choose fruits-banana, frozen berries, kiwi, and pineapple- to add to a simple yogurt-based smoothie. Work together to prep the ingredients and let them adjust the mix by adding a little OJ, milk, honey, cocoa powder, and/or vanilla.

Remember: A snack should be smaller than a meal since it’s just meant to tide your kids over until dinner. You want them to be hungry by the time dinner rolls around since it will increase the likelihood that they will eat what you make.

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Can you get fit without leaving the house?

Written by lyricsmama on November 15, 2015 – 9:38 PM -

Ahh convenience, we all want it. The easiest fastest way possible is what we all crave to find. That also includes when it comes to working out. Sure, we join that gym that we all see on the way home from work, thinking how convenient homeworkoutit is. Just stop in after work and go home. But, by creating your own home gym, you’ve got an even easier more convenient route.

The first thing you probably think of buying is a bigger piece of equipment. A treadmill may seem the most obvious answer, but don’t forget about the other smaller items like dumbbells, resistance bands, a medicine ball and don’t forget about using your own body for resistance with workouts. Also, don’t forget about the exercise mat to use for stretches and cushions for things like crunches and push-ups.

Your home gym doesn’t have to mimic “the gym” you need to make it your own, for your needs and fitness level. Remember you can always add on to the equipment as you need to, there’s no need to rush. Start small, with the most simple things. Think of the area’s you want to improve on, or what you enjoy doing with your workouts.

Exercise is important and you need to find things that work for you, sometimes without requiring equipment at all. Find ways to make your workouts fun like blasting music, or watching TV. Forget the excuses, you don’t need all the fancy equipment.

Here are some great workouts you can do:
– Walking: It’s great to get outside and enjoy the weather, but if it’s just not working out for you that day do a flight of stairs, or just walk around the house a few times.
– Jumping Jacks: They can make you feel like a kid again, but guess what, it’s great cardio!
– Pushups: Yea, they kind of suck. But you need to find the best way to do them where you feel comfortable. Use your knees instead of keeping your legs straight, or do them standing up against the wall.
– Leg Lifts: They don’t always have to be done straight to be effective, try bending your legs slightly while lifting.
– Crunches: You want those abs? You have to get down and do those crunches, as a beginner, don’t worry about getting all the way up, as long as you feel the stretch in your muscles, you’re doing good!
– Jogging in place: Make it interesting so that the time goes faster, play some music or watch TV.
– Squats: Sitting or standing up from a chair, as long as you do a few reps you’ll be doing something for your legs and buttocks.
– Dancing: Talk about having a fun workout, dancing is great and hey, if you can’t think of a dance, pop in that Just Dance game and go at it, include the kids, you’ll be surprised at how much fun you’ll all have and how much of a workout you’ll get.

Getting some sort of exercise in is important, but you don’t have to go all out, paying gyms or buying expensive equipment to have an effective workout. Use what you have on hand, in your home, you’ll be more likely to keep up if you’re comfortable!

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Workout With The Right Pair Of Shoes!

Written by lyricsmama on August 10, 2015 – 9:37 AM -

Working out and you get that cramp, that shooting pain in your foot… Why? You have a really expensive pair of shoes on that you bought specifically for working out, what the heck is wrong with your feet?

I’ve encountered this more than once. Especially when I was doing Zumba. Some days it was so bad, I could hardly walk the pain was so much. Who knew that those expensive cute workout shoes could be what’s causing foot pain, for me it was. We tend to forget that shoes affect our feet as much as they do, they could be too big or small, worn out and have lost their support, which was the cause in my case. My shoes were worn, they didn’t look worn, but the support was gone.

What I was going through was Plantar fascitis which is inflammation of the ligament that runs along the bottom of your foot, from the heel to the toes and is the common cause of heel pain. Let me tell you, it’s painful! I did stretches, flexed my feet a lot, bought some heel pads and iced it. It was a long time before it healed up.

I had to find another pair of shoes, I wanted a pair that were flexible enough, yet cushioned to keep my feet comfortable, and a pair with support. Honestly I couldn’t just get another pair of ‘cute’ shoes. Thankfully, fitness/workout shoes are so easy to come by, anyone can find what they’re looking for both style and comfort wise. Just remember it’s probably best to buy your workout shoes from stores who have shoe experts! Let’s face it, the shoes I use for Zumba, or the gym probably aren’t the same, the shoes for hiking and crossfit aren’t the same, if we’re serious about working out, we need to be wearing the proper shoes for the different types of exercise we plan to get, our feet are important, if you can’t walk on them because of pain, there goes your workout! Try to find the best shoe for your workout the outdoor sports gear reviews website has an article that’s well worth reading if you’re looking for best shoes for your next crossfit session or anything else.

Tips for buying the right workout shoe…
– Wear Socks, try shoes on with socks, normally your not barefoot when working out
.- Make sure that there is good support in the middle and around the heel with good cushioning under the ball of the foot.
– Try on shoes later in the day rather than early. You’ve been on your feet, and if they swell at all that’s the best time to make sure the shoe fits right.
– Make sure you have enough space in the front of the shoe (usually a thumb’s width) between the shoe and your longest toe.
– Does the shoe have give? You shouldn’t have to break shoes in, make sure it fits and has room to be flexible when you put them on. If they’re not comfortable right away, they’re not for you!

Be kind to your feet, don’t let them be the reason you stop exercising. Buy the right fit and kind of shoe!

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Refreshing Cucumber Lemon Foot Scrub

Written by lyricsmama on April 30, 2015 – 8:34 PM -

o Start with 2 whole cucumbers (one per foot), 2 tablespoons of lemon juice and 2 tablespoons of olive oil; mix in a blender until pureed.

o Pour the mixture into a bowl and heat it up to warm temperature.

o Place half of the mixture in a large Ziploc baggie and half in a second baggie.

o Slide feet right into each baggie, rubbing cucumber mask until each foot is fully soaked.

o Leave on for 5-10 minutes then rinse with warm water.

o The cucumber is extra refreshing and reviving for tired toes, the lemon helps exfoliate and the olive oil deeply moisturizes for super softness.

cuc foot lem

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