for the Holidays
Excitement is in the air here as we put up Christmas lights and begin preparing our home for the holidays.
We celebrate both Christmas and Hanukkah to honor the upbringings of both my husband and I. It's great for the kids as it often results in many days of celebration!
In fact, another winter holiday we've come to celebrate in recent years is the winter solstice, which signifies moving from the dark into the light. We burn candles and reflect on the habits and attitudes we're ready to let go of and those we welcome in. Often we have a party and invite friends. It's quite the festivity lighting the Christmas tree, Hannukah candles, AND the solstice candles.
The time will fly by and soon we'll be moving into a brand new year.
Are You Festive or Frazzled?
It's easy to get caught up in the stress of getting just the right gifts, the cost of it all, and the seemingly constant food temptations that surround us at this time of year.
One of the best strategies for getting through the holidays is to keep your stress level to a minimum.
Stress triggers emotional eating and, as I will share on my upcoming FREE teleseminar, there's a chemical trigger (not just feelings and habits) that determines emotional eating behavior.
Take a minute or two a few times a day to breathe and find things to appreciate to keep your cortisol and adrenaline under control and you'll notice a huge difference in how you feel!
Resources to Keep You Bright, Beautiful, and Blissful
To help you cope with all the temptations and challenges to your health at this time of year, I'm excited to have some very special resources so you can keep your energy high and your body feeling great.
This week we have a super exciting show on sleep. It's even more important at this time of year to nourish yourself with zzzzz's. I am excited to welcome my dear friend, anti-aging and hormone expert, Dr. Lindsey Berkson. She'll be sharing her “beauty sleep” secrets for how sleep helps turn back the hands of time.
The following week, we'll have guest Chef Karen Osborne sharing some of her secrets for creating the most amazing party foods that will not only keep your waistline trim, but also delight the palates of young and old alike.
I also have a very special teleseminar coming up on Dec 5th all about some very little known hormones that when brought into balance through simple meal strategies can profoundly affect your holiday and everyday experience. This week's feature article will give you a bit of a sneak preview, but you skip ahead and register here.
Please let your friends know about the call…it will be chock full of value.
I'm continuing the appreciation log for at least another week, and I would so love your contribution. Click here to find my latest entry.
And please remember the Party and Potluck Nibbles that Nourish class on Dec 11th. Karen's told me she's putting the finishing touches on the final menu and it's really special. We'll be giving you a peak at the dishes and sharing photos on the blog soon.
Sign up for the class by TODAY and we'll also send you my Healthy Holidays Online Video recording, valued at $17, for free!
Talk to you VERY soon….hopefully Thursday morning on the radio!
With much love and appreciation,
Dr. Ritamarie Loscalzo
P.S. As promised a couple weeks ago, here's a sneak peak at the new book, Trendsetters, my article was published in.
Trendsetters has now become a best-seller on two separate Amazon.com lists! I'm pleased that this means I'll soon be recognized by The National Academy of Best-Selling Authors™, an organization that honors authors from many of the leading independent best-seller lists.
Click here to read tips from the book for helping busy people to recharge!
Why Eating Frequent, Small Meals
May be Damaging to Your Health
A common recommendation for people suffering with blood sugar imbalances and attempting to reduce weight is to eat frequent, small meals throughout the day.
The idea is that eating every couple of hours keeps your blood sugar levels steady without the dips (and severe hunger that accompanies those dips). In theory, you'll eat less if you never let yourself get hungry enough to overeat.
Recent hormone research tells us that this is actually the worst way to eat for blood sugar balance and weight loss and can actually be damaging to your health.
Understanding Why Frequent Eating is Faulty Advice
Hunger, satiation, and blood sugar balance are all under hormonal control. And we're not talking about reproductive hormones like estrogen and progesterone. We're talking about what I refer to as “the survival hormones.”
Eating between means alters powerful hormonal signals, interferes with the mechanism that burns fat as fuel, clogs liver metabolism, and sends calories right to fat stores.
Insulin is a hormone secreted by your pancreas in response to eating. It doesn't much matter what you eat; insulin will be secreted. The composition of your meal determines just how much insulin is secreted. The more carbohydrates in the meal, the more insulin that's required to keep your blood sugar regulated.
The most basic concept that you need to understand is that whenever insulin levels rise, fat burning stops.
The Hormone Relationship Between Insulin and Fat Burning
In order to understand why an increase in insulin levels affects your fat burning ability, let's start by understanding what should happen with hormones in a perfectly balanced body.
- You eat, insulin levels rise, and glucose is moved into your cells to be burned for energy.
- Insulin triggers leptin levels to rise (leptin is the hormone your fat cells secrete after a meal) which signals the brain to turn off your appetite and tells your pancreas to stop making insulin.
- Glucose levels return to normal, insulin decreases, and leptin triggers fat burning.
- If your blood sugar begins to drop too much, glucagon is secreted to mobilize stored calories and all is well, until your next meal.
Typically, insulin levels peak at around 30 minutes after you eat and return to normal at about 3 hours. Then leptin gets to go to work and triggers fat burning.
In the ideal situation, insulin sends 60% of the fuel in a meal to the liver for “quick access” storage as glycogen and triggers the uptake of the remaining 40% of the glucose and amino acids into muscle cells and cells of your vital organs, which use the glucose for fuel and the amino acids for growth and repair.
However, if you're eating every 2 – 3 hours, as some experts advise, your insulin levels never go back to normal and you never go into fat burning mode.
Understanding the Process of Becoming Insulin Resistant
When you eat frequent, small meals throughout the day, insulin levels stay elevated all day, triggering fat storage and leading to insulin resistance. What this means is that your cells no longer hear the cry of insulin to allow fuel in for energy. As result, more fat storage occurs and you feel tired all the time.
If everything is functioning properly, then after a meal there is no need to eat again for 5 or 6 hours.
The hormone glucagon is in charge of keeping your blood sugar steady between meals. Glucagon signals the liver to turn the stored glycogen back into glucose as your sugar levels begin to drop between meals. It also triggers a process called “gluconeogenesis” which triggers the creation of glucose from stored protein and fat.
In a healthy person, insulin and glucagon are good siblings and take turns.
There's enough carbohydrates stored in the liver in the form of glycogen to last 24 hours, unless you are engaging in extreme exercise like marathons or triathlons, so when things are functioning well, there are no blood sugar dips between meals.
Snacking between meals causes insulin to rise again, even before it's returned to normal, suppresses glucagon, and raises leptin levels unnaturally, leading to a condition called leptin resistance wherein the brain and pancreas no longer hear the signal from leptin to turn off appetite and reduce insulin secretion.
Constantly elevated levels of insulin, either from snacking between meals, deliberately planning meals close together, or eating foods high in sugar and simple carbohydrates, causes hyperinsulinemia, a condition of too much insulin in your blood. This condition leads to insulin resistance as the cells can no longer take in so much sugar and “close their ears” to the insulin signal.
Insulin resistance leads to weight gain, especially around the middle, stiffening of your arteries, elevated blood pressure, systemic inflammation, and eventually to cardiovascular disease like heart attack and stroke.
The Dangers of Insulin Resistance
Once you understand how the hormones are supposed to work together, you can understand why eating frequent small meals is not just a bad idea for weight loss, it's outright dangerous.
In addition, eating too frequently can cause your liver to get congested. Remember, ideally, the liver takes 60% of the fuel from each meal and stores it as readily available fuel. When the liver becomes insulin resistant, those calories eaten head directly for fat storage as your liver can no longer accept them without the aid of insulin. Further, eating too often clogs your liver's fuel storage system, resulting in fatigue and impaired detoxification mechanisms.
Eating too often also triggers your liver to produce excess VLDL, the most dangerous form of cholesterol. As a result, snacking between meals causes cholesterol to rise even more than eating cholesterol rich foods.
A Chain of Collapse
This whole process, a guaranteed “chain that makes you gain,” becomes a vicious, vitality-sabotaging cycle:
- When your liver gets clogged and develops insulin resistance, it's hard to go 5-6 hours between meals or to sleep through the night because your liver can no longer produce a steady stream of glucose – it needs to comes from outside.
- When there is insulin resistance in your liver, your liver turns calories into fat at an increased rate, leading to excess weight.
- The constant high levels of insulin due to eating too frequently result in excess leptin and eventually leptin resistance, which further confuses your liver and turns down the production of glucagon, the hormone that keeps your blood sugar steady between meals by stimulating the release of stored fuel.
- To make matters even worse, the lining of your blood vessels and your nerve cells do not become insulin resistant and are subject to the stiffening effect of excess blood sugar and insulin.
- The net result is stiffening of your arteries and hardening of your nerves, leading to cardiovascular disease and mental decline.
Breaking the “Gain Chain”: Solutions to Restore Your Hormones
So, now that you understand the dangers of eating frequent, small meals and how they affect your hormone balance, what's the solution?
Timing your meals to optimize hormones is key.
It's important to remember that fat burning is impossible when insulin levels are elevated. It takes about 3 hours after a meal for insulin levels to return to baseline, even if you just eat a small snack.
Until then, fat burning is impossible.
If you have weight to drop, are fatigued, concerned about family history of heart disease, cancer or diabetes, make use of that critical fat burning time.
At 3 hours after a meal, do some exercise, drink some water with lemon juice and do whatever it takes to hold off the next meal for as long as you comfortably can.
It may only be 3 hours and 15 minutes to start, then 3 hours and 30 minutes, and then eventually, in 15 – 30 minute increments, you'll be able to gradually move your meal spacing to at least 5 – 6 hours.
As you stretch the time between meals and change the foods you eat to foods that require less insulin, you'll see the pounds melt away, your energy rise and your mental clarity improve. And maybe, even more importantly, you'll protect yourself from the top 3 killer diseases in our modern world.
To find out more, register now for the free teleseminar, Dr. Ritamarie's “Hush Hush” List of Hormones and Strategies for Busting Your Holiday Bulge.
Dr. Ritamarie's “Hush Hush” List of Hormones and Strategies for Busting Your Holiday Bulge
It's that time of year… the time for shopping, decorating, and practicing your thank-you smile when someone gives you one of those “I was a doorstop in a previous life” fruitcakes as a gift. While the good intention is there, the sad truth is that the food gifts we often give tend to make us feel more fat than festive.
For what's intended to be a joyful season, most of the food choices we make ultimately result in guilt, shame, and regret.
You're smart enough to know that indulging in those rich, holiday processed foods means decking your waistline with future pounds and the inevitable donning of your elasticized sweatpants.
Just Say Ho Ho Hold the Sweatpants!
This year, I'm sending you an early holiday gift and letting you in on my pound-sizzling secrets for boosting your internal fat burning furnace.
It all has to do with some secret, often overlooked hormones I'll tell you all about in my upcoming, free teleseminar:
Stuff yourself with strategies for getting through the holiday without the extra belly bulge and make this year a truly fun and fruitcake-free delight!
Even if you can't attend the live teleseminar, you'll get free access to the recording, just by registering for the call:
Ho Ho Hold the Fruitcake and Register me Now!
and Information Night
Once a month, you can join us LIVE in Austin, Texas for a local raw food potluck where you can:
- Meet like-minded people and make new friends.
- Learn new and exciting recipes.
- Gather valuable health and nutrition information.
- Feel supported on your health quest.
Click HERE to learn more about the event and find out all the details on what to bring and what to expect.
- Saturday, December 17th, 6:30 p.m. central
What our attendees have to say about recent potlucks:
- “Great meetup, great food, great folks!” — Joy Johnson
- “Great food and great people, and a warm welcoming experience (it was my first time and I felt at home!)” — Audrey
Click below to follow this Meeting Group on Facebook!
Either way, you get a recipe guide e-book and fully indexed online video class you can watch over and over.
- December 10th, 2011 – Party and Potluck Nibbles that Nourish
Check back here soon for more details to be announced!
Celebrate and Rejuvenate!
Presented by Dr. Ritamarie Loscalzo, Karen Osborne, and Pamela Weems
Whether you're entertaining for the holidays or looking for that perfect dish to take to a party or potluck, you'll find a recipe in this class that will raise eyebrows and delight taste buds!
Not only will these dishes meet all your expectations when it comes to elegance and taste, they also come with a fat-pant-busting guarantee that you won't pack on the extra holiday pounds when you stick to these dairy-free, sugar-free, and gluten-free whole food options.
Register for this class and learn how to make nourishing and nutritious holiday dishes that will make your next party platter a hit including:
- healthy hor d'oeuvres
- fresh finger foods
- appetite-friendly appetizers
- to-die-for desserts that boost longevity
Remember, all recipes are made with 100% gluten free, dairy free whole fresh foods – no sugar, no processed oils, no grains, and no cooking!
Includes 2 1/2 hours of recipe demonstrations and all the recipes in a PDF e-Book!
SPECIAL – Ends Today!
You never have to worry about missing a class! All of our delicious, health-boosting Raw Food University classes are recorded. You can access videos and recipes in PDF format for any of our past classes including:
You'll find a complete list of past classes available HERE.
Future Show Schedule:
- Thursday, December 1st – Sleep Tight: Don't Let Your Hormones Fight
- Thursday, December 8th – Ho Ho Hold the Sweatpants! Healthy Holiday Nibbles
- Thursday, December 15th – Shaping Up for the Holidays
- Thursday, December 22nd – Decorating Your Holiday Stress
- Thursday, December 29th – Create an Inspired Health Vision for 2012
Sleep is often taken for granted when people go looking for lifestyle changes that will make a dramatic difference in their health.
Dr. Ritamarie should know. She recently discovered herself what happens when you push your body's sleep deprivation limits too far.
There are many amazing transformations in your body that occur when you shut down for some shut eye.
In this show you'll learn:
- all the amazing hormone dances that happen when we sleep
- the liver's role during sleep
- how to stoke your fat-burning furnace during sleep
- the benefits of sleep for your immune system, adrenal glands, and mental clarity
- and the dangers of getting inadequate sleep
Hitting the pillow is just as important as hitting the gym! Joining Dr. Ritamarie on the show is Dr. Lindsey Berkson, hormone specialist. She will share how sleep affects your hormones which in turn affect your health. Stop losing sleep over your health and attend this important show!
8:00 am PT, 9:00 am MT, 10:00 am CT, 11:00 am ET
Click here to attend the show!
It's that time of year again. Holiday parties abound and along with it come the growing waistline. This year don't trade your skinny jeans for sweatpants.
Events with friends and family should be all about feeling good, not guilty!
You can enjoy feeling confident about attending those holiday gatherings with wonderful fun treats and nibbles shared by Dr. Ritamarie and Chef Karen Osborne.
Here are the latest shows we've added:
Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and if you're a vegan, vegetarian, raw food enthusiast, food allergy sufferer or just someone who wants to eat more healthfully and manage your weight, this is a challenging time of year.
What typically happens after you eat the rich, full course Thanksgiving meal that is the norm in most American families? Do you feel full of life, ready to go for a walk and appreciate the wonders of nature or do you want to collapse in a heap on the couch, bursting at the seams and feeling a bit sluggish?
Food temptations abound, as does pressure from often well meaning friends and family members who want to be sure you're enjoying the bounty.
I know you want to keep your commitment to your healthy diet and lifestyle, yet you want to fit in, and enjoy the celebration with everyone else.
Maybe you've tried adapting traditional recipes, but haven't been impressed with the results. Or perhaps you've experimented with recipes from magazines or newspaper articles, but your friends and family members weren't particularly impressed. Or maybe you're new to eating fresh whole foods, and you don't have a clue about how to begin.
Dr. Ritamarie is here to help you stay on course this Thanksgiving and onward through the holiday season. This show will be chock full of tips for meals, and ideas on how to handle those family issues around not eating the typical Thanksgiving meals.
Check out Dr. Ritamarie's Thanksgiving Feast Recipe Book: http://www.drritamarie.com/Thanksgiving/
At some point in time, most of us get lost on our paths to good health.
We overeat, indulge in choices not good for us, and stop exercising. These choices tend to take a huge toll on our bodies creating a myriad of dis-ease and pains.
But there is no reason you have to continue living this way. Joining Dr. Ritamarie is Dr. Linda Berry.
Dr Linda empowers you to transform stress into a mighty fuel to power your life and dreams. She knows how because at 24 years old she was paralyzed from an automobile accident. Before that, Dr Linda was a dancer, choreographer, and purple belt in Karate. She rose up from her wheelchair to become a chiropractor, nutritionist, and trauma healing specialist.
Dr Linda is an internationally known author. Her book Internal Cleansing has been in print for 24 years. She's been featured on ABC, CBS, NBC, and Fox news.
Join this dynamic duo as they cover rejuvenation, smiling your way into distress, and being happy with your weight.
Visit Dr. Linda on the web:
Whenever Halloween rolls around, so do the candy bars and sweet sugar-loaded treats. If it's tough for adults to always make the best lifestyle choices, imagine what it's like for kids!
And while it's tough to resist sugar, it's just as tough being a kid and facing serious conditions like obesity, diabetes, and attention disorders. Being teased for obesity is no laughing matter when you're a kid.
This call with kid-friendly language will help your kids to understand what happens when they feast on processed foods and what THEY can do to feel better and STILL have fun!
She's a Doctor of Chiropractic with Certifications in Acupuncture, Clinical Nutrition, HeartMath® and Herbal Medicine as well as a certified raw and living foods instructor, chef and coach. She's the author and co-author of several gluten-free vegan and raw foods recipe books including: Power Breakfast Ideas, Deliciously Quick Lunch and Dinner, Healthy Halloween Treats, Dessert: Making it Rich Without Oil and Dried and Gone to Heaven.
She's also the creator of many successful online courses designed to restore people to the health, energy, and vitality they need to live full and vibrant lives.
There is no prescription for being a Trendsetter, but you can compare your goals and achievements with the benchmarks made by those in this book. In this book, we give you a number of our Celebrity Experts® who are Trailblazers and Trendsetters, including Dr. Ritamarie Loscalzo.
They have done it! These are successful experts who made their mark and share with you how they and their concepts developed. Find out more about this Amazon best-seller here…
One thing that all holidays and celebrations have in common is their focus on food. Holidays are a time of celebration and cheer. They're special events when you set aside time to get together with friends and family to simply appreciate each other. I love the festivities, the decorations, the parties and the connection with the special people in my life. Find out more here…
They're all comfort foods that we turn to in times of emotional upheaval, boredom or loneliness. When you eat your favorite comfort foods, you feel great…for a little while. Until the discomfort sets in. Read more here…
By Ritamarie Loscalzo
As the holidays approach, you may find your sweet tooth getting a little more merry than you'd like. Here's a sweet dessert that you can enjoy without spiking your blood sugar!
Coconut Carob Mint Low-Glycemic “Candies”
- 1/2 cup coconut butter
- 1/4 cup carob powder
- 1/4 cup water
- 10 drops peppermint oil
- Optional: 8 drops chocolate stevia
- Optional: 3 drops hazelnut flavor extract
- Put all ingredients in a bowl and stir until well combined, adding just enough water to make a smooth paste or blend until smooth.
- (Optional) Add a tablespoon of chopped nuts for a crunchy candy.
- Spoon into candy molds (http://www.drritamarie.com/go/FWSiliconeMolds) or ice cube trays or spread into a baking dish lined with wax paper.
- Freeze until solid, about half an hour.
Looking for more Sweet Treat ideas?
Find more in our Sweets for the Holidays class video!
Internationally recognized speaker, author and mentor, Dr. Ritamarie Loscalzo is the “Woman's Fatigue Expert and Vibrant Health Mentor.”