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Super Supplements

WARNING:  This blog post may cause more change in your life.  PLEASE don’t stop reading – it’s a BIG ONE and totally worth it.  I promise.

What do omega-3 and omega-6 have to do with being healthy?

Actually, a lot.

Most people are severely out of balance on these two fatty acids, on the heavy-side with one in particular.  Remember this:  We generally get WAY TOO MUCH OMEGA-6, and not enough omega-3.

Omega-6 are found in things like vegetable oils… which are in commercial baked goods, salad dressings, and planted based cooking oils.  The ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 in your intake, should be about 1:1 – 1:3 and most people?  …are about 20 times that amount on the omega-6 fatty acids ranging from 1:20 – 1:30!!

But wait… it gets worse…

those omega-3 fatty acids that we’re LACKING are the necessary food for our brain stimulation and skin revitalization.  They slow down aging, improve fat metabolism, lubricate your joints and decreases inflammation!  YES!  We need more of that!

So how do you get MORE omega-3 you ask?  Some great additions to your diet are several types of fish including salmon, pecans, almonds ,walnuts, soy nuts, flaxseed (great for cooking!), and deep green veggies.

So… I eat a lot of salad, but I honestly DON’T love to eat a lot of fish, and neither does my family.  Plus we have to pay attention to not eat too much depending on mercury levels to be eating it DAILY.  (*Not to mention, we had a terrible event around some salmon so I don’t think the kids will eat it for … the rest of their years at home.)   We do add flaxseed and wheat germ to a lot of the things we bake, but again – I just don’t consume THAT much over all.  No way is it close to the 3500 mg required daily.

GOOD NEWS…  there are some great supplements available to us that are affordable and lower calorie with all of the benefits!  If there is a natural alternative to healing something in your body, I’m all for it.  Be educated and start somewhere!

I’ve taken a prenatal for the past 12 years.  It’s my basic multivitamin but targeted specifically for those who are pregnant and or nursing, containing the all important folic acid.  I’m actually still nursing… so that is what I currently take for a multivitamin.   Most women’s multivitamins will cover you containing Vitamin A, C, E, copper, magnesium, zinc, calcium, potassium, and iron.  Taking a vitamin with food will help your body absorb it, the exception to that rule is iron supplements, so maybe pick one that has less iron, or take that separately at night before bed.

So…I thought I was covered and doing well for myself with my vitamins… all seemed well…   I guess I just didn’t know how much better I could feel!

Omega Women, Gingko Smart, and "Burp-less" Fish Oil Supplements

I’ll be honest, I saw a HUGE difference in my overall health after I added in the following supplements to help with hormonal health and adding in Omega-3!   So… unless you’re eating a serving of salmon daily, listen up!

First and foremost I take a plain fish oil supplement.  Before you turn up your nose, and recall any bad experiencing you’ve had with fish oil in the past… Fish oil has come a long way.

I get ours at Target in the HUGE bottle because both my husband and I take it daily.  We get “Burp-less Fish Oil” from Nature Made, and keep it in the refrigerator (taking 1-2 every morning = 2400mg))…  we’ve NEVER had a “fishy” burp from it.  Fish oil is full of  those Omega-3s we need and will help you not only with your brain/heart/joint function like I mentioned, but help ward off depression, AND keep fat off your belly!!  (It also helps to keep your body a bit more regular)  Sound good?  It is!

We also take a “Ginkgo Smart” soft-gel from Irwin Naturals which has some fish oil in it (878mg) and also Ginkgo for brain clarity.   (I call it my natural energy booster without caffeine ).  I ran out of this the first time, and honestly… within a week I thought I had lost my mind again!  Ginkgo really does help!

Then I take an “Omega Woman” supplement from Nordic Naturals that has some Omega-3s (just a little over 100mg), but mainly it’s  Evening Primrose Oil (800mg), which aids in hormonal balance.  Danna Demetre recommends the Ultimate Omegas from Nordic Naturals, and then a Coromega.

Finally, in effort to also help your family get healthy for Him – pay close attention to what types of multivitamins you’re giving your children.  We were so saddened a few years ago when we realized they were putting aspartame in many children’s vitamins!  There are many more options – look around!

“Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.” – James 1:22

Can I Still Have My Coffee?

I think college is what sparked my interest in coffee.

As a child, I always enjoyed the smell of coffee…  but I couldn’t, for the LIFE of me, figure out why people drank it.

It tasted AWFUL.

Coffee can actually be GOOD before a work out? Yes! (photo via The Fitness Chronicle)

Then came short nights, and long days… and before I knew it, coffee didn’t taste “so bad”.

It was a slow transition.  I think at first I started drinking some gas station version of a “latte”, which was pretty much a sugary warm drink with a HINT of coffee flavor.  It was like cocoa with a “kick” at that point in my life.  This humors me now, as I can’t stand “flavor” or any additions in my coffee.

I like it BLACK.

I can drink a latte now and then.  Tall, Decaf, Skinny… but please – NO flavor!  For the sake of what we’re talking about – we’ll stick with plain, black coffee.

So the question is often asked… “What about my coffee, do I have to give it up to be healthy?”

Well, one thing is for sure, when it comes to health talk… opinions abound!

One article may something is “bad” for you, another may state clearly that same thing can be GOOD for you…  Even doctors vary on this topic!   Both ends of the arguments can be very convincing, and you’re just not sure what to believe!

It can be quite confusing, can’t it?

My husband’s uncle is a Dr. and he gave up coffee entirely for a while to see what would it would do as far as health benefits.  After several months of study, he shared with me what I had read:

Drinking 8 oz of coffee a day can be good for your mental clarity and health.  It can be recommended 30 minutes before a workout to boost your energy level and maximize your fat loss (Unless you’re trying to gain bulk, it doesn’t help with that – just muscle definition).  While other studies said drinking any type of caffeine will throw off your blood sugars by messing with your heart rate, metabolism and nervous system!  So… you have to realize and figure out what it does to you and the type you’re consuming.  Remember how we talked about God designing us all differently?  Basically, it affects different people differently, depending on your chemical make up.  Some reactions are going to be more drastic than others… and obviously things like flavored coffees can make the calories add up QUICKLY.  Try to stick with a black coffee, and something from a whole foods store is best.

I can enjoy a cup now and then, and I’m ok with it.  If it’s a vice to you (if you drink coffee after coffee all day long), than maybe you should consider getting rid of it.  It’s definitely worth talking to God about, and praying about it.  Pop used to be for me, how coffee is for some people… I thought I needed it to function after having 4 children.  This is when something can become a stumbling block or even an idol.  Consuming regular pop was a “helper” (*if you can call it that) in my whole gestational diabetes venture.  Nine teaspoons of sugar in my “drink” was running my system a muck!

I switched to diet pop after child #6…   I told myself I couldn’t “give it up”… So of course, I believed that lie.

Do some reading on diet pop, and it will become way less appealing quickly… at the very least, you’ll begin considering if those “good” feelings out weigh the bad.

Once I decided I was going to take a break from pop and cut it back to one, once a week… I realized many weeks I didn’t even want the “one” I gave myself permission to have.  It lost it’s luster, and I lost the desire to “have to have” it.  Although I never experienced things like weight gain from it, I knew that it wasn’t God’s best for me to drink it in the amounts I had come to embrace daily.  I’ve actually stopped drinking it for 6-9 months only to return to it when my babies were little.  It’s much easier to give things up when you’re getting proper REST.

The more you wean yourself off of caffeine, the easier it is to live without it.  That “high” you get from it … is also followed by a LOW.  It’s actually much lower than when you started feeling “tired” to begin with…. so often people then drink MORE caffeine for more of an energy high or to suppress their appetite.  Hmm… almost sounds like a drug??  Only it’s legal.

Just some drink for thought.  The Bible isn’t always specific about things like coffee or caffeine consumption… and obviously drinks can be mis-used as a meal replacement (instead of eating), an energy replacement (instead of sleep)… and that’s a no-brainer.  Those aren’t the best choices for our bodies, or being healthy for Him.

“For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.” – 1 Timothy 4:8

Nothing is Off Limits!

Have you tried these WASA brand crispbreads? They are cracker like and very tasty! A great add on when you have an all protein/veggie meal.

Yep.

You read correctly.  NOTHING is off-limits.

Isn’t that freeing?

Once you realize that you’re not bound to being legalistic about food… and you have the education to back your decisions… you can can breathe again.

What if someone told you could NEVER have birthday cake…  Ever again.

How would you feel?

Would you start thinking about birthday cake….?  About how much you LIKE birthday cake… and how you were hoping to share some cake at your son/daughter’s birthday party, or your anniversary, or a wedding celebration and NOW you can NEVER…

Have it.

AGAIN.

I’ll tell you what.  I’m not perfect.

I’m thankful God doesn’t expect perfection – even in eating.  BUT…That also isn’t a “get out of jail free card” either.   When I go on vacation, my convictions from God, on health, go with me… they STICK with me at all times.  I don’t suddenly hit a day where I eat “anything I want” and stuff myself crazy full.  I just never desire what some might consider a “free day” like that.  God did that.

What God does want is our best… every day.

When Danna Demetre (Scale Down) mentioned that “no food is forbidden” it was freeing.  What happened when Eve was told the fruit on the tree of knowledge was forbidden?

If we think something is forbidden, we start a cycle of potential idol worship and suddenly food has control over us.  We can become fearful of eating the wrong things… to the point that it consumes us!

As Christians, we are not full of fear.  We are FULL of faith!  Everyday is a free day.  YOU are free in Christ!!

If no food is forbidden, then suddenly it was MY choice to say no to the foods that weren’t good for me. I saw what foods with poor nutritional value  did to my body, and I felt it.  It was not some “list of rules” that made me feel bound and gagged.  I was driven by my accountability to God, and my desire is to please Him.

If there are things you’re consuming that aren’t God’s best… then you need to lay them at His feet.  Pray for Him to help free you from the bondage of whatever that vise may be.  It’s between YOU and Him.

Education is the key to helping you make better choices… don’t use ignorance, to what is in food, as an excuse to consume whatever you want… “because you’re going to die anyway…”   Instead, enjoy the freedom that we can have treats and eat in real life without guilt.  Strive to do better each day, eating the things HE has made for you to enjoy!

Glorify God in the body… in all ways that you can.  It all matters – to Him.

“Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well.” – 3 John 1:2

I AM Beautiful.

Read about how Stephanie realized just how beautiful she is… Her transformation allowed her to shed 25 lbs (since last fall) along the way – NOT dieting! She has been transformed INSIDE – out.

Say hello to Steph... she's been transformed inside OUT!

Hello, my name is Stephanie and I am a perfect………………..

PEAR!

I have been a perfect pear for as long as I can remember. Yes, I have saddle bags, thunder thighs, a bumpy dairy air!

For years I would look at my body in disgust.

Why couldn’t I just chop those saddle bags off?!?!

I suffered from a low self image about my body and was determined to do something about it! Overweight and
highly frustrated, I turned to running 9 years ago. I have been running ever since, but guess what???

Those saddle bags came right along with me.

It wasn’t until I read Scale Down: Live it Up by Danna Demetre that I realized that
running alone wasn’t going to change me the way I needed to be changed. I needed to put down my old self and put on God.

I needed to put God’s Truth first and to stop telling myself lies. I squared off with those lies and I replaced them with the
Truth.

I am beautiful!

I am wonderfully made!

I am loved! I am designed for a purpose!

I meditated on Psalm 139:14 for a good month before it began to transform my mind in Him, and I still meditate on this gem today!

You see, I have always exercised, but I forgot to give God the glory for how He made me.

I forgot the #1 thing, God.

I still have saddle bags, but they’re much smaller and I still run, but now with more purpose. Now I see me as BEAUTIFUL, STRONG, and
HEALTHY for Him!

So if your struggling right now with how you look, I challenge you to tell yourself the truth, just as you are right now!

You ARE beautiful!!

You ARE wonderfully made!!

You ARE loved! You ARE designed for a purpose!

Memorize Psalm 139:14. Say it to yourself as you look in the mirror. Put on the lens of God and know that you are His and you
are……………Perfect!

“I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.”

Psalm 139:14

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