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Happy New Year to you bloggers out there! I hope with the start of the new calendar year you will find new beginnings, hope, lots of love and laughter.

It always feels like a fresh start when I open the first page of my newly bought planner and see that there are no events marked on any of the pages. Of course I immediately begin filling in the pages with my life, but that first empty page gets me all excited! It simply reminds me that events are not as binding as I usually perceive them to be and that anything can be changed with an eraser!

Actually that wouldn’t be responsible… but you understand what I’m getting at right? That dinner date and any other plan that I make is so easy to change. It’s important to take care of yourself, slow down and enjoy life. Whether that means going on that dinner date with your friend or simply making a cup of tea and reading a good book on your couch – you have to do what’s best for you.

If you turn to a week in your planner that is completely filled to a brim with different plans, meetings and social events then start by taking a deep breath and SMILE! If you find that it’s just too overwhelming then decide which event is the least important and move it to the next week. Work with your plans and please don’t forget to make time for yourself.

Take a mental health day. Treat yourself to a spa treatment. Nourish your body and soul at least once a month, hopefully more!

Be kind to yourself and remember to BREATHE.

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With the New Year coming up, everyone is scrambling to come up with his/her New Years resolution. What if you told yourself that you WEREN’T going to make a resolution this year? Instead, what if you set out to make a change, not only in light of the the New Year, but a real, long-lasting life change?

Maybe that sounds a bit too scary, but try to think back to this past year and tune in to how your body felt. If you felt/feel tired, generally lacking energy, experiencing cramps, bloating and any other ache or ailment that I have not listed, then tell yourself that ENOUGH is ENOUGH!

It’s time to FINALLY do something about it!

You shouldn’t be waking up tired, or have a constant stomachache or bloating. Life is good. You’re alive and breathing and you should feel that way. Make sure the food you’re eating is alive and not completely deadened by chemicals and preservatives. Eating fruits, veggies and whole grains will make you feel better – TRY it. Check the labels – if you can’t understand what the ingredients are then you probably shouldn’t be eating it.

Do not let this New Year mean starting a strict diet for merely a month or two – it’s much more straining on your body to do that rather than working on changing your overall habits for the long term. Set a future goal that you’ll work towards in the years to come and strive to bring yourself into a healthy state both mind AND body. I know you can do it – you deserve to be happy and healthy at the same time.

If you have questions, please feel free to ask and leave any comments that you would like below.

“Be nourished by the fruits and beauty of nature and make every day a celebration of the rhythms of the seasons.” This is such a wonderful quote taken from Terry Walters book Clean Food. This book, which I have newly discovered by perusing the aisles of Barnes and Noble as well as remembering that a friend had mentioned the name a few weeks back, has become a new love of mine.

Clean Food
is a wonderful book filled with insight into the world of eating whole foods that nourish your body and soul. This is right up my alley! And, in fact, Ms. Walters attended the Integrative Institute of Nutrition, which is the school that I am now attending! I’m so excited that this information is becoming more and more available as people’s eyes become wider and they begin to realize that they’ve been exposed to chemically changed food that has been poured into their bodies for many years.

That’s why us health counselors are here to help! We want to help break your unhealthy habit and not just for a month but for your lifetime.

Look for Clean Food by Terry Walters at your nearest book store – you won’t be disappointed. There are some amazing recipes that I will definitely be blogging about in the near future – check back often!

Have a wonderful day

A friend once gave me a quote from Yogi Bhajan that said “eat to live, don’t live to eat.” If you stop and try to understand what this quote really means it makes complete sense. It says to eat when you feel your body needs nourishment instead of eating just for pleasure. If you follow this motto, watch what you put into your mouth and eat foods that nourish your soul you are bound to help yourself become healthy.

This quote reminds me of the American work ethic. In the U.S. most of us live to work instead of work to live, whereas in Europe and many other parts of the world the ethic is the opposite. When I studied abroad in Spain I saw this work ethic first hand and was amazed to see how relaxed and social the people were. Clearly I’m generalizing and not everyone in Spain is like that but this is what I saw in most parts of the country.

People ask me how they should start this healthy way of eating, and all I can really say is there’s no time like the present. Why wait for a good moment? Dive into a healthy style and start treating yourself well as soon as possible. After all, you deserve the best.

Remember that eating healthy should be fun. Eat food that excites you, smells good and most importantly tastes good! As I always say, enjoy food in its natural state and stop moderating the true taste with salt and loads of sauce that contains unhealthy ingredients a.k.a. cornstarch.

“eat to live, don’t live to eat.”

A trip to the grocery store can be all sorts of fun, but on the other hand it can be VERY overwhelming. If you look around there are thousands of packages that are colorful, bright and just popping out at you.

What I’ve come to notice with my supermarket visits is the increasing number of packages that say “all natural” on the front of the item. What urkes me about this is that these companies are just trying to persuade the consumer into buying their product. If I stop to think about it, how can it be “all natural” like they say it is? Either it’s certified organic, or its not… There really is no in-between. If a product is marketed as “all natural”, then why does it have added preservatives?

What I’ve noticed about myself, as well as other people I’ve gone shopping with, is that we are more prone to buying these “all natural” items, but really, I’m just not so sure that they are so different then the other brand sitting right next to it on the shelf.

My question is this, does anyone regulate these “all natural” products? The USDA has different rules and regulations to allow for a product to be considered organic. Why are these “all natural” items getting away with misleading their consumers?

This is definitely something you can/should be thinking about before buying your products. Take a look at the packaging. Are you just buying it because of these added few words on the cover? Are you even comparing the product with its competitor to the left of it? Ask yourself these questions before you spend your precious money on something that may be false.

Do research.

To know is ten times better than not to know.

I look forward to hearing your stories/thoughts.

Over the past two years I have learned the importance of reading the nutrition facts of each item that I eat. When I go to the supermarket I take my time through the aisles because I am constantly picking up boxes and packages, reading them and either putting them back or sticking them in my cart.

I have come to realize that the healthiest way of eating is to read each item listed and understand what each ingredient is. If you don’t know what it is then it’s probably not good for you. You want real, whole ingredients in the food that you buy. Otherwise you are consuming chemicals and preservatives, which are most likely harming your health in some way or another.

This realization and understanding has been another way that my life has transformed in the past few years. I’m now completely aware of what’s inside my food and therefore I know what’s being fed to my body.

I enjoy sharing what has helped transform my life because I know many of you suffer from the same type of symptoms that I’ve had. I hope you can learn from what I’ve learned. Please feel free to share any life stories that have helped transform your life into a healthy state of being, or anything else that you’d like to share of course.

Twitter: TheHealthyMix