Monthly Archives: October 2018

Better Understand #Cravings

Happy Halloween Everyone.

I came across an article, “Outsmart Your Cravings” by Jacqueline Andriakos,  in Health Magazine’s, May 2018 issue.  I thought it was interesting so I wanted to share.

According to the article,  “Cravings are driven by a number of factors, including hormones, emotions, and even your surroundings”.  There are “biological and psychological pathways of cravings”.  “it becomes a lot easier to stop them before they get out of control” says Ethan Lazarus, MD, director of the clinical Nutrition Center in Greenwood Village, Colorado. What are some “common craving provocateurs and the mechanisms behind them?”

  • Your stressed out
    • “When you’re under a lot of pressure, it drives cortisol up, which in turn can stimulate cravings for foods high in fat or sugar.” “Your body wants foods that may trigger the release of the neurotransmitter dopamine in the brain to help you feel better…”
      • solution: “replace the craving with something else that makes you fell good.”  “This could be a hobby you find joy in, like yoga or reading.”
  • Hormonal shifts such as PMS
    • “some women go through cycles of low serotonin, which can intensify cravings…”
      • solution: “you’ll want to do activities that boost serotonin so you don’t go looking to do that through food.  “that could be a workout, or increasing your light exposure (which ups serotonin naturally) by spending more time outdoors.”
  • Sleep Deprivation
    • “while we sleep, our fat cells produce hormones like leptin and adiponectin, which reduce appetite and insulin resistance.”  Dr. Lazarus explains “if we rob our bodies of the sleep we need, even by 30 minutes, we get up hungry the next day and wanting carbs.”
      • Solution: “You can short-circuit munchies born from sleep deprivation by having a healthy breakfast as soon as you wake up that combines unrefined carbohydrates with some protein and good fat in order to stabilize your blood sugar, and in turn, help prevent out-of-control snacking as the day goes on.”
  • You’ve Created Bad Habits
    • “Many cravings occur because we connect memories with particular foods.” “These types of yearnings are usually more psychologically driven then physiologically driven.”  “cravings are sensory, so the harder you ruminate over it, or smell it, or actually see the food you’re wanting, the more you will think you have to have it.”
      • Solution: “This may mean keeping these foods out of your home.” “Sometimes the very act of identifying a psychological-based craving is enough to overpower it.”
  • Dieting
    • “Strong urges typically happen after periods of limiting yourself.” Allegra Gast, RDN, owner of Aloha Nutrition in Oahu, Hawaii states that “for some people, it’s possible that their body is looking for a nutrient that it’s not getting enough of.”
      • Solution: Dr. Lazarus says, “don’t let your gas tank get empty.”  “I recommend people eat fives times a day.” and also suggests “having at least 15 grams of protein at every mini meal.

To read the entire article, find the May 2018 issue of Health Magazine. You can find them online, ask people on social media if they have a copy or check with your local library.

Catherine Bares

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When should we eat, when should we stop eating

Recently, I had a conversation with a client, of my PiYo class, about the #Circadian rhythm and how she lost 8 lbs. following the 12-hour eating rule.  It prompted me to reflect on when I am at my best in eating habits and at my best weight.  The science behind it makes sense to me and rings true with what I find in my habits.  If I eat late at night, I tend to gain weight and my sleep suffers.  When I cut off my eating, I drop body fat and sleep longer.  I crawl into bed earlier, fall asleep faster and wake up early feeling energetic.  I don’t hit the snooze button on those mornings.

I came across this article that helps explain the #Circadian Rhythm and how it affects our health.  If you give a try, please leave comments here,  on Instagram or Facebook.  Did it help you sleep? Did it help you drop some body fat/weight? Are you more energetic?

Catherine Bares

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Stepping out of my Comfort Zone

New adventures

Trying new adventures is exciting for me.  I look forward to stepping out of my comfort zone and experiencing new adventures, new food, and meeting new people. My experience was amazing and I hope you enjoy reading about my stay at Travaasa Spa and Resort, Austin, TX (now Miraval, Austin).

Stand-up paddle boarding

I remember relaxing at the edge of the infinity pool, looking out over Lake Travis. The water was beautiful and inviting sitting at the bottom of the valley the pool overlooked. After closing my eyes I visualized a memory that I had while relaxing (click to read that story). Upon opening my eyes, I decided to figure out what the rest of my day was going to include.

Stand up Paddle Boarding was my choice for the day.  The water in Lake Travis was beautiful.  The view from the top of the hill at the resort’s infinity pool enticed and called me to participate in the excursion that I noticed on the event board for the day. It would be an adventure that I could write about.

Launch time

We launched our boards and I started in a kneeling position to paddle into a nearby cove.  I followed my coach’s instructions on proper feet and body placement on the board, to make the transition from kneeling to standing.  What happened next was a huge surprise to me.

Fear stepping out of my comfort zone

“Fear” set in; I stepped out of my comfort zone.  Balance in my PiYo class is completely different than balancing on a board in the water.  I was always comfortable on the water boating, skiing, fishing, trawling, and swimming. The fear surprised me.

Running all of my Coach’s instructions through my thoughts, I worked towards connecting on a physical and cognitive level. Going back to my boating days, I kept Imitating the body shifts that I would make to keep my balance. I struggled with the technique as my Coach kept walking me through it and encouraging me.  He inspired me to let go of the fear and relax through the motions.  Enjoy the scenery” he said, and “if you feel like you are going to fall, just fall into the water, don’t try to catch yourself.” -I am happy to report that I did not fall.

Soaking in the scenery-creating new memories

Upon exiting the cove and heading to our destination spot, I was able to work through the challenges and really connect my body to the movements of bending my knees, leaning forward and pulling the paddleboard across the water. I found the most challenging part was the steering. As my balance improved, the steering kicked in.

Along the way, I soaked in the scenery.  The aquamarine-colored water was clear as day. In amazement, I watched Garfish swim up to the surface only to dart back down after seeing me.   I watched water plants as my board glided over them.  The hillside that we were heading towards grew larger with each stroke moving me towards it.  Curious bystanders were everywhere.  I paddled my way past some anchored boats. Their passengers were enjoying the cool water with their friends and family, on big floating islands.  I saw Jet skis zipping around the middle of the lake, causing wakes that we had to maneuver our boards across. Pulling out of the marina, there were tour boats filled with adventurers wanting to share and enjoy the environment. I could hear screams from a nearby Zipline excursion that were exploding, and echoing off the hills which traveled across the water.

Precious resource returned to its glory

It occurred to me that on my first trip to Travaasa, this very lake that we were all enjoying, was completely dried up due to a 5-year drought.  The thought of this beautiful, precious resource completely dried up and gone saddened me.  It reminded me, once again, how delicate life and nature truly are.  So, that day, I lived in the moment, appreciated the experience, felt empowered by my success, enjoyed the company of my fellow adventurers and thanked God for every moment and for restoring this precious resource. 

Catherine Bares

Add another to my Been There Done That List!

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