Drinking water for weight loss

Drinking water for weight loss

It seems like many people focus on food when they are working on their weight loss goals.

Some people focus on cutting calories, or only eating certain types of foods.

One thing that you can add more of to help you, is water.

Even if you are someone who just doesn’t like the taste of water, read on.

I’ll give you some tips to help increase the water that you drink.

Water helps your body function.

It flushes toxins, fuels your cells, and can even curb hunger cravings.

Fun fact: Did you know that many times hunger cravings can mean that you are thirsty?

Try this…

The next time that you think you are hungry, drink a tall glass of water. You may just find that you are not hungry any more…

Drinking a glass of water before you eat can help you feel full faster. This means that you are eating less calories!

It will speed up the digestion process and take up space in your belly.

Many of the foods that we eat today can clog up our digestive system.

When this happens, your metabolism will slow down.

Water can help with this.

Are you someone who drinks sodas and other drinks that are packed with sugar?

Those drinks don’t provide your body with nutrition that it needs…and some of those drinks can lead to bigger problems than weight gain if they are consumed in high amounts.

Replacing those drinks with water will also help you cut calories.

Some things that you will notice when you start drinking more water include

  • Reduced bloating
  • Reduced joint pain
  • Increased energy
  • Clearer skin
  • Decreased sugar cravings

So what can you do to increase your water intake?

Obviously drink water…but what if you don’t like tap water or have poor tap water?

There are some inexpensive options at the grocery store for spring water and other kinds of bottled water.

Some of these have added minerals for taste.

I tend to lean toward alkaline water personally.

If you still don’t like the taste of water… you could add sliced fruits or squeeze in some fresh fruit juice.

Be careful with using fruit juicers as you can add much more calories than you intended to.

One of my favorite additives is Fizz! These sticks give me energy all day without the crash, plus I don’t crave sugar any more.

Right now, here in Tennessee, we have a heat advisory.

It is crazy hot here! The heat index so far has reached about 104*F.

There are warnings everywhere to be careful when you are outside and to stay in air conditioning if possible.

If you have looked through my blog, then you know that I run a small farm.

The animals are outside, so I have to be able to take care of them. Since it’s so hot out, I need to take care of myself in order to take care of them.

So what do I do to make sure that I am staying hydrated?

Gatorade has a lot of sugar…so Complete Hydration is my go to.

What are some of your favorite ways to spruce up you water and make sure that you stay hydrated?

I hope you are enjoying your summer!

Chat soon!

Brooke

PS… if you are looking for some ideas to help you lose weight and gain energy, check out this Starter Kit

 

 

 

 

The benefits of improving digestive health

The benefits of digestive health…there are way more than I can really list in a short period of time.

There are a few things that you want to know!

  1. Your overall health starts in your gut.
  2. Your immune system is in your gut.
  3. Your metabolism is in your gut.

You may be thinking to yourself that this is common sense.

I have a question for you though.

Do you  make choices to keep your gut healthy?

This is where clean eating comes in.

Many of the foods that we eat today do not have the nutrition that our bodies need.

  1. Vitamins
  2. Minerals
  3. Fiber
  4. Probiotics

They contain empty calories.

What does that mean?

Empty calories lack things that you need including those listed above.

This leads to sugar cravings, increased snacking through the day, and feeling like you’re not eating enough.

Think of a burger from a fast food restaurant.

They are loaded with fat and calories. They’re missing vitamins, fiber, and good bacteria.

You eat one and then an hour later you are hungry again.

This is because your body is craving good nutrition.

How often have you felt bloated, uneasy, or just plain uncomfortable after eating?

Making better choices can fix this.

Not only will you see changes in how you feel, but you will also see visible changes including clear skin, thicker/shiny hair, and you will even lose some inches around your waist!

One of the books that I recommend to help you start creating a better plan for what you eat, is this one:

This book shows you some easy ways that you can incorporate clean eating into your life.

It’s all about simple changes over time.

What health goals do you have for yourself?

We are just about to dive into the summer months.

I know that there are many people who want to lose a few pounds and inches because they want to look amazing when they go to the beach.

Clean eating can help you with this.

Making better choices can help you with this.

Fight off snacking.

Fight off sugar cravings.

Feel so much better.

If you want to know what a simple plan would look like, here’s a free plan complete with recipes and journal for you

 

 

How to improve digestive health to boost weight loss and have more energy

How to improve digestive health to boost weight loss and have more energy.

Did you know that how you feel and how your body functions is controlled by your gut?

If your gut is not working properly then you will see and feel the effects.

Many of the foods that we eat today are processed and missing the nutrients that our gut and body needs.

Things will build up in your body and your system becomes clogged up.

This can cause weight gain, joint pain and even fatigue.

When I was first diagnosed with Lyme disease I learned that by removing certain things from my diet and daily use, I could actually heal my body from the inside out.

Some of the things that I removed include aluminum (canned foods, and deodorant), fluoride, candy and chocolate, bread.

I started eating more real foods and less boxed meals.

Just because it comes in a box, does not mean that you should eat it.

Whole foods are packed with more vitamins and minerals.

Improve your gut and digestive health, and you will be able to absorb more of the nutrients that you need.

To learn more about this, I recommend checking out this book:

 

To start improving your gut health, increasing your fiber intake and using probiotics can help speed up the process and move things along faster.

This is because you are pushing out the junk and giving your body the good bacteria that helps break down what is in your gut.

Once I did this, I noticed two things happen pretty quickly.

I didn’t feel as bloated, and my stomach started to shrink.

Bloating is caused by things like poor diet and lack of water.

Fiber and probiotics can reverse this very quickly.

A clean eating program can also help to speed up your results.

You don’t have t make drastic changes when moving into a clean eating program.

Small changes each day can improve your digestive health over time.

We all know that fruits and vegetables can give you more fiber and nutrients.

Clean eating is not just about eating salads all the time though.

Unless you choose to be vegan.

Otherwise you can still eat steak, chicken and fish.

There are some coaches who teach clean eating programs that also show you how to prepare steak so that it’s healthier for you.

Mostly this includes how to cook it, cutting the fat out and not using thick sauces.

Clean eating is not about starving yourself.

Digestive health is not about starving yourself.

It’s about feeding yourself right.

Eating smaller portions through the day keeps your energy up and prevents overeating.

Making healthier choices for your snacks allows you to prevent your blood sugar from falling and keeps that late afternoon starving feeling away.

Since starting a clean eating program I have watched my energy go up and even lost a couple inches along the way.

So if you want to improve your digestive health remember:

  • Fiber is your friend
  • Keep the probiotics coming
  • Smaller portions
  • Cut out the junk
  • Make small changes each day to get used to your new habits šŸ™‚

How to improve digestive health To boost weightloss and have more energy

How does clean eating improve digestive health?

How does clean eating improve digestive health?

First lets talk about why digestive health is important.

Your gut digests your food, absorbs nutrition, and removes bad stuff from your body.

There are good bacteria in your gut.

When you use antibiotics, steroids, pain medicines, or even eat foods that are not great for you, this can hurt your gut health.

Killing off the good bacteria prevents it from working properly.

Good gut health is important for:

  • Preventing and controlling acne
  • Reducing eczema
  • Strong shiny hair
  • Fighting allergies
  • Fighting of colds a flu
  • Weight loss

These are just a few of the things that improving your gut health can help with.

There is a really good book that I recommend that talks about the connection between your mind, gut, and body. You can check it out here.

So, you now see a bit of why digestive health is important.

Now lets talk about how clean eating can help your digestive health.

Good foods help to nourish your body.

These are foods that remove toxins, provide vitamins, and allow your body to function properly.

Some nutrients that are important include

  • Fiber
  • Water
  • Probiotics
  • Vitamins
  • Minerals
  • Protein

These are just some of the basic building blocks that help you feel energized, alert and help keep that tummy from feeling bloated.

Much of our diet today is made more for speed instead of nutrition.

There are many additives, dyes, and preservatives that can also hurt your body.

These can gunk up your body.

If you’re not sure what clean eating is, check out this blog article.

Clean eating provides your body with the ability to remove the build up from eating not so great foods.

Even if you make small changes everyday, over time you will see the results transform you.

Through clean eating you are giving your body and gut the building blocks to work properly.

Healthy living helps your body get into balance.

That balance is what will help you feel better.

Through clean eating you can get your body back into balance.

Making healthier choices can help you get onto that road to recovery.

As you add better foods in, and remove the foods that are not as good for you, your body will be able to take better care of itself.

Allergies will not bother you as much.

Joint pain will reduce and you can start running around again.

Your energy will most likely be the first area that you notice a difference in.

Personally, I love that I don’t feel like I need to sleep all the time any more.

What are some health goals that you can accomplish?

If you want to see a sample of what clean eating would look like for a week, get your free starter kit here.

How does Clean eating Improve Digestive Health_

 

 

Why choose clean eating?

Why choose clean eating?

Growing up my favorite foods were spaghetti, tacos and ice cream.

My parents had a huge drawer filled with hostess cakes and other snacks.

When I cam home from school, I would pick a snack and start my homework.

I wasn’t inactive…

I liked being outside.

Looking back I realize many of the problems that I experienced with my skin and weight were from the way I ate.

When I was diagnosed with Lyme Disease, I learned that I no longer had a choice.

I needed to change my eating habits.

I didn’t want to stay in pain.

Feeling like I needed to sleep all the time was exhausting.

I wanted to be able to get off the couch for more than just an hour or two.

Nothing was helping me. There were too many medicines. I just knew there had to be something else out there that could help me.

When I learned about clean eating everything changed.

What is clean eating? Check out this previous blog post.

So, why choose clean eating?

Here are some of the results that I have had

  • Clear skin- even as an adult I have had the worst battle with acne. It’s finally gone and I don’t have to wear any makeup to cover anything up.
  • No more itchy and painful eczema- I used to rip my skin apart from itching in my sleep.
  • My hair is so long and shines- I used to battle with split ends and my hair always was cut short.
  • Ā Sugar cravings gone- I don’t feel like I need to eat all the candy that I see during the day any more.
  • No more itchy, watery eyes from seasonal allergies- I used to go through a bottle of eye drops a week. I don’t even buy them any more!
  • I’m not exhausted all the time any more!- My day starts at 3:30am and I run all the way through to 9pm. No more crashes on the couch. I get to enjoy riding the horses and hiking with the dogs several times a week.

These are just a few of the benefits that I have had.

I could literally go on all day about the changes in my life.

I started reading this book called “Living Well Gluten Free” by Beth Hillson

Food is supposed to nourish our bodies.

The foods that we eat today though, are hurting us.

She explains:

  • How food can heal your body
  • What can happen to your teeth
  • Effects on mental health (anxiety and depression)
  • The effects on fertility
  • Physicians that can help
  • easy recipes to get you started

I think when many people hear the term “clean eating”, they think about all the foods that they will miss eating.

They think that they are not capable of changing the foods that they eat.

I challenge you to think of this differently though.

Think about how much better you will feel.

What would it be like to be able to spend more time running with your kids?

What would it be like to not hurt every time you move?

How would you feel if you could fit into those new jeans that you have always wanted?

How would you feel if you didn’t have to cover up blemishes with caked on makeup everyday?

Honestly, I chose clean eating because I wanted my life back.

I love the horses I work with.

I love hiking with my dogs early morning.

Changing my diet and adding some holistic supplements has given me so much more than any of the doctors could.

That’s why many people choose clean eating.

My friend Jaime has Hashimotos disease. Her doctor told her that she needed to lose weight.

She couldn’t figure out how to do it.

She didn’t have the energy to do it.

Now she is half the person she was, and enjoying life with her husband and daughter more than she has ever before.

If you’re curious about starting your own clean eating journey. Click here to get your free starter kit.

Why choose clean eating_

 

What does a clean eating plan look like?

What does a clean eating plan look like?

When I first heard the term “clean eating”, I thought that there would be a bunch of rules about how I ate.

With Lyme disease, I already have enough trouble with different foods causing joint pain, weight gain, allergies, or even stomach problems.

Clean eating is supposed to help many of these symptoms.

It’s actually easier than you think.

There’s a great book that provides you with 365 recipes to help you gain energy to have fun and lose inches to fit into that bathing suit for the beach this summer!

I realized that clean eating was not about eating foods that I didn’t like.

I have always been someone who does love fruits and vegetables though!

Some of the biggest things that I cut out of my diet were sugar, bread and pasta.

I know what you’re thinking…

bread is hard to cut out!

There are definitely better breads for you to eat than others.

When you look at the ingredients of many prepackaged foods they list the amount of sugar, sodium, and carbs.

Eating too much of these can cause weight gain, fatigue and joint pain.

This is where meal prep is a life saver when you have a busy schedule!

I will actually make my meals ahead of time, and then just dish them out through the week.

Pick what whole foods you like.

Experiment with different recipes.

This book I mentioned has TONSĀ  of ideas that you can use to create meals that you will enjoy.

What types of salads do you like?

There are more than just those made with lettuce.

I will usually make a large salad that I can eat from through the week,

Some of my favorite salads include

  • Celery and carrots.
  • Cucumber
  • Cucumber and tomato
  • Tomato salad made from grape tomato’s
  • Bell pepper, tomato and cucumber salad
  • Lettuce, carrots and olives

There are so many ways to experiment with salads.

To add some protein I will use

  • Egg
  • Almonds
  • Pecans
  • Tuna
  • Turkey

I literally will make a giant bowl of salad that I can scoop from all week and not have to spend the time chopping everything up every time that I want to eat.

Aside from salad you can make great baked recipes including

  • Acorn or butternut squash with cranberries and cinnamon.
  • Eggplant with chopped up bell peppers and cheese
  • Salmon with a marinade
  • Steak with a marinade

On a side note, when you are using sauces and marinades watch how much sodium and sugar are in them.

Clean eating is not just a plant based diet.

You can still eat steak, eggs, fish, and chicken.

Cooking these yourself is best if possible.

You can prepare these ahead of time as well.

I will make a batch of 14 hard boiled eggs for the week that I can eat with meals or as snacks.

Creating a clean eating plan that works for you is about learning the foods that you enjoy.

The more you enjoy the foods that you are eating, the more you are likely to stick with the plan.

If you want to learn more about clean eating and what it can do for you check out this pageĀ in the blog.

What does a Clean eating Plan look like_

 

What is the difference between clean eating and dieting?

What is the difference between clean eating and dieting?

Here is a book that you will want to check out! Click the image below to see a sample of the info and recipes that you can find inside.

I have always thought of myself as a healthier eater. Salads were always my favorite. I drank plenty of water. I didn’t drink soda, but I loved sweets! I didn’t really think that sweets would hurt as long as the other things I are were good for me!

In college I started my switch to eating healthier.

When I was living at home, my mom loved to cook. Pasta was a main meal, and you had to eat everything!

But when I went to college I started to change my diet a bit. Although, beer probably was not much of a better choice…and as a college student in the back woods, beer was part of the culture!

I started to have panic attacks more often. I struggled with my weight going up and down like a roller coaster.

Like any college student I put in a lot of hours.

I had full class schedules all day everyday. I worked in the barns and the fish hatchery.Ā Ā I worked three jobs throughout the week. Oh! …and of course I spent time at the campus club and out partying at bon fires in the middle of the woods with my friends.

In the beginning I could go three days without sleeping and I ran like the energizer bunny!

I wanted to lose some weight, so I started walking more. I tried going to the gym, but I enjoyed hiking and running on the track more than sitting in a stuffy gym.

I have always been the outdoor type.

I kept a 4.0 my entire time in college. My anxiety went crazy and by the time graduation came around I was on anxiety meds and I was a mess.

It didn’t help that I had a relationship that ended badly with physical abuse.

I went into a downward spiral. I started to fast to get rid of the weight that I had gained. I put myself on a calorie restricted diet…and I hated myself.

When I graduated, I moved back in with my parents.

I continued to run everyday, taking our dog Beanz with me.

I decided I wanted to try to get back into eating healthier again.

I controlled portion size, and I continued to eat the salads that I loved so much.

Even though I was eating a bit more, I continued to lose weight.

I realized that there was a difference between a true calorie restricted diet, and choosing to eat foods that were better for me.

Of course…I still loved my sweets.

Fast forward about 7 years.

I had moved to Tennessee, Joe and I got married, I was working constantly between my full time job, the horse rescue and my online job.

I had fallen back into enjoying sweets and fried foods because that is the culture in the south.

I didn’t really put weight on, but I was super active. I took the dogs walking or hiking three miles everyday. I rode the horses for two hours a day. I also walked about four to six miles a day at work.

I was not stationary by any means.

One day I was working out in the pasture ripping the vegetation off the fence with some friends so that I could put electric fence up.

The next day I was covered in poison oak.

Over a few weeks it turned into the worst care that the ER had ever seen…and then I was soon diagnosed with Lyme disease.

My whole world started to fall apart.

The joint pain. The fatigue that confined me to the couch. The headaches. My arm turned purple and the nerves went crazy. My throat began to swell so bad that for two months I could not eat solid food. I started dissolving cookies in milk, drinking tons of protein shakes, and melting down chocolate just to get calories in me. I felt nothing except worse and 8 different doctors could not help me. You can learn more about my story in a previous post I did here.

Then I learned about a holistic practitioner in Georgia.

They opened my eyes to what was happening with my body.

This is where I learned the difference between clean eating and dieting.

Clean eating is about making better choices and removing foods that are harming your body.

Processed sugar, additives, soda, syrups, gluten and so many other foods actually can make illness worse, or even cause illness.

I think removing sweets from my diet was the hardest.

A couple times I have tried to eat some on the holidays only to realize how much they make my stomach upset and my skin break out.

One of the things that I do love about clean eating is that you are not forcing myself to restrict calories.

Just through eating foods that are better for me, I’m not as hungry.

Some of the things that I consume more of now are:

  • Protein
  • Fiber
  • fruits
  • veggies
  • Oatmeal… there are so many ways to make it!
  • Almond milk

The difference between clean eating and dieting is that you are forming better habits.

Along with these better habits I have seen some great things happen with my health:

  • I came off of all the prescription medications
  • I have the energy to take the dogs for a three mile walk when I get home from work and then I go out and work with the horses.
  • My joints no longer feel like they are exploding.
  • I lost about two inches off my waist and I am starting to see definition in my abs and arms.
  • Allergies are a thing of the past for me (check out this blog post if you are struggling with allergies)

Honestly if you are thinking about trying clean eating, I highly recommend trying it for at least 30 days so you can see the results start to happen.

Keep a journal and track it!

If you want to try out an easy 7 day plan to see what it looks like, click here to get your free starter kit.

What is the difference between clean eating and dieting_

How clean eating can help reduce symptoms from an autoimmune condition.

How clean eating can help reduce symptoms from and autoimmune condition.

The food you eat has a pretty big impact on your health over time.

I found this book where they show you how eating Paleo can help you manage symptoms from an autoimmune condition.

It has some really great information and insights to help you understand how food can help you with your autoimmune condition.

Click on the image to learn more about what the book is about.

The Paleo diet is just one of the types of “diets” that you can use.

Personally, I feel that the word “diet” is not the right word to use.

To me, dieting is more about restricting calories and even fasting at times.

Eating for an autoimmune condition

  • Is about getting more vitamins and minerals through your food
  • It’s about making healthier choices so you have more energy
  • It’s about cutting out foods that make your joints and body hurt

This is why I chose the clean eating route.

Since starting this journey I have had so many changes in my health.

One of my favorite changes is that allergies don’t bother me as much.

With many autoimmune conditions you develop allergies to everything.

You body over reacts and attacks itself.

It’s spring time right now.

This time last year I was struggling with watery eyes, throat pain and swelling, and I was so stuffy all the time.

Allergy medicine didn’t really help me that much.

I tried pills and two different nasal sprays. One of the sprays was prescription.

Not this year though!

I have noticed that the nodules on my vocal cords are even shrinking.

Last year my allergies used to make them swell up.

Clean eating is about making small changes each day.

It can be tough to completely change what you eat over night.

Once you start making the changes though, you will see amazing results!

Some other things that can help with allergies are

What I have learned through my journey is that healing your body from within has more benefits than masking the symptoms with medications.

I’m not a doctor…

But this is what has worked best for me.

Lyme disease confined me to the couch. I could not eat solid food. My joints hurt all the time. Life was miserable.

Clean eating has helped me get back on my feet.

I go hiking with my dogs everyday. I ride the horses a couple times a week. I work full time.

Lyme disease had almost taken everything away from me.

What is your autoimmune condition doing to you? What has it taken away from you?

You are made for so much more.

You are stronger than you know.

If you want to get back on your feet and doing the things you love, this may be for you.

If you want to see what a clean eating plan looks like, I created a started kit for you.

You can get yours free here.

How clean eating can reduce symptoms from auttoimmune conditions

Are you struggling with an autoimmune condition?

Are you struggling with an autoimmune condition?

You are not alone.

There are many people who lead very productive lives, even though they fight a constant battle every day with their health.

When I was first diagnosed with Lyme Disease I traveled around to eight different doctors and they all had prescription medication that they wanted me to take.

A majority of them included antibiotics, steroids, tons of Tylenol for the pain and various medicines for my stomach.

Things may work for a few days, but then I would go downhill again.

Can you relate?

I lived on the couch.

Everything made me tired.

Everything hurt so bad that I didn’t want to move.

The hardest thing about it all though, was how alone I felt.

I felt that no one understood what I was going though.

I sometimes even felt that no one cared about what I was going through.

Now that I am on the path to healing, I want to be able to help other people who are struggling with autoimmune conditions as well.

Having people to talk with who want to bring you up and allow you to share freely is just as important as all the medicines and things that you take for your body.

You need to support your mental health.

There will be days where you just need a shoulder to lean on, or someone who understands.

So I created a community called Autoimmune Warriors.

It’s a space where you can share your story, learn about things that are helping others with autoimmune conditions, and lean on others when you need support.

I want it to be a positive space where you can learn more about yourself and discover the strength inside you.

If you or someone you know has an autoimmune condition, and you want to surround yourself with some positive and inspiring people, come visit and see what Autoimmune Warriors is all about.

How to be consistent in your workout routine

 

Summer is on it’s way…

This is the time of year that you are thinking about where you want to vacation, what you want to do on your vacation, and what you plan on wearing….For many it means bathing suits!

So now you start looking at what your eating and what your doing to get some exercise in.

You can pick an exercise routine that you want…

but if you are not being consistent, you will not see results!

Make sense?

So….

What can you do?

Here are some tips to help you be more consistent with your routine.

1- Get a buddy! Having someone to workout with can make all the difference. They can help motivate you and keep you going. This is why many people love hiring a personal trainer.

In general, just having someone to do it with you can help you stay motivated.

If you have pets, they can also be helpful to help get you out the door. Animals need exercise as much as we do. If you are tired of your dog barking all the time, chewing up the house when you are at work, or peeing on everything….many times you can stop behavioral problems with a consistent exercise routine.

Find a place where you can take them for a walk, jog, or hike.

I have a belgian malinois mix and a fox terrier mix. Both are very high energy. Taking them out for exercise everyday keeps them happy and healthy without stressing me out.

2- Look at the schedule that you have now. Where can you block out time just for exercise? It tends to be easier to get into a consistent habit when you plan ahead.

This is time just for you.

Make it something that you can look forward to.

3- Create a playlist that you enjoy.

For some people their playlist is hardcore and gets their heart pounding just listening to it.

For some people they something softer that helps them relax and focus.

Personally, I love to listen to books and podcasts. Many of the audios I listen to are motivational speakers or inspiring topics that help me get clear and focused on a topic, so that I don’t focus on problems or things that happened during the day or the week. Basically it’s like meditation for me.

4- Reward yourself after your work out! ALWAYS reward yourself, especially when you are working on creating a new routine.

This does not mean to eat an ice cream sundae or the biggest burger at McDonalds’…

It means do give yourself something that you enjoy so you want to continue doing the routine.

Is there a protein shake that you love? You can refuel your body and help it recover.

Is there a good book that you want to relax and read? More time for yourself without the demands from the outside world!

Was there movie or show that you have wanted to see on Netflix? Now you can sit and unwind!

Creating a consistent routine is not about beating yourself up because you missed an opportunity to workout.

Creating a consistent routine is about finding something that you love and making it a habit that you do once or twice a week.

Start small and build up from there.

You have enough demands in your life….

Don’t be your own worst enemy when it comes to taking care of yourself.

After my workout or exercise, I usually make a cup of fizz tea, and read a little.

The fizz tea is great because I can make it warm or cold, it has vitamins and minerals that help my body recover and it doesn’t have all the sugar that many sports and energy drinks have.

They come in a couple different flavors. You can get more info about my favorite citrus fizz here.

Summer is on it’s way!

It’s time to get ready.