Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Building Blocks for a Healthy Future

I wrote an essay recently for a contest about a life changing moment that has been the cornerstone of my success throughout my life.  I have referred to that experience most often in business as "preventive maintenance".  It is a lesson of sacrifice and change to be better prepared for and possibly avoid the worse.  For me in that life changing period of time, it wasn't about sacrifices made willingly, but it did force change into my life.  That life changing moment came in the climax of what was believed to be an unlikely opportunity for combat action.

  • In the early 80's I was learning to fight in the military.  I wasn't enjoying it because of the repetition, long hours and circumstances or beliefs, but I was changing. In 1983 I had to use that training in real combat and I am here today because of it. 
  • During my 23 year career in the dairy industry, I focused on preventive maintenance in everything.  Not just equipment, but in training of employees, ect, which resulted in an opportunity to open four of what became the most successful distribution centers in the Company. 
  • This year I had to take a harder look at and work with my 6 year old special needs daughter on her diet, and I sacrificed my own love of food for my daughters health, so I could share her diet as a good example.  As a result, I am healthier than I have been in a long, long time and as with everything, after the original struggles, maintenance gets easier to manage.

As we fight so hard to make necessary changes, those little victories each day are creating a strong foundation for good habits and our good habits are the  building blocks for a healthy future.  What was in the past to be a torturous effort to change, becomes a good habit that in many cases could save your life.  "Preventive Maintenance" is especially important when it comes to healthier choices in our diet.  Through poor diet, your body may have become accustomed to working harder than it needs to and as a result could be causing irreparable damage.  Making healthy changes may not be easy as your body adapts to the changes, but you may notice some big differences in time.

Take control of your health today.  A healthy diet is a great start and if you are looking for natural nutrition supplements or healthy home products that are good for the environment, I can help with products from the #1 Natural Nutrition Company in the U.S.  
Please check out my website at www.ahealthieryoutoo.com

Note: My essay was chosen as a winning entry for a weekly prize and is in the running for the grand prize.  The contest is being conducted by APX Alarm on Facebook.  For a look at the essay  about my experience in combat, click the link below.
Back to School Weekly Essay Contest Winner: Terry Guinn

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Prader-Willi Syndrome and You

    Today's Blog post is dedicated to the parents and their children who struggle with Prader-Willi Syndrome (PWS).
     For someone who has never heard of PWS it is hard to understand the many issues that families and children are dealing with, because it is hard to communicate that message effectively. Today I watched a video that is the best short, yet complete, and simple description (approx. 8 min) of Prader-Willi Syndrome that I have seen and it was done by Lisa Graziano who is the Executive Director of the Prader-Willi Syndrome Foundation of California. Given the fact that an estimated 1 in 15,000 have Prader-Willi Syndrome, chances are good that you know someone with PWS or have met someone involved with it one way or another. Please take a couple minutes to check out this video to get a better understanding of why I work so hard at gaining a better understanding of good health & nutrition, especially for my daughter.

     Through the APX Alarm contest mentioned in the video, I have gained many new friends and contacts, especially in the PWS community. Being involved with the PWS community has been a godsend and thanks to Facebook, I have connected with families all around the world and I get to hear their stories, as well as learn from their experience. Through that same contest on Facebook I also came to realize that we shouldn't limit our support to just the "community" that we happen to be a part of due to a specific struggle.  I now have many new friends who, like me, have children struggling from one of hundreds of disabilities.
     We have a lot to share and learn from each other.  My daughter Kirsten has also taught me so much and has inspired me to learn even more, not only to help her, but to benefit myself, my family and anyone who will listen.  It is my hope that through my Blog, lives will be touched and changed in a positive way.  
     If your interested in seeing part one of the video above in which Julie Casey, also on the board of the Prader-Willi Syndrome Foundation of California, talks about how the $30,000 will benefit families of children with PWS... Click this link  PWCFVIDEOS on YouTube    
     For more information on Prader-Willi Syndrome and to see if there is a chapter in your state, please check out this link: PWSAUSA

Shameless Plug (to feed my family): If you would like information on natural nutritional supplements or healthy home products from the #1 Natural Nutrition Company in the U.S., please visit my website at  www.ahealthieryoutoo.com       
For my family... My daughter has enough problems and for the future of my children & my children's children, I want the cleanest products available. I became an Independent Shaklee Distributor because I trust Shaklee and love to help others, which is what Shaklee is all about.  You too can trust in Shaklee products due to the rigorous testing that goes into each natural ingredient before it is used, the millions spent on clinical testing, research & development and the focus that this company has had for over 50 years on "Going Green", before anyone knew what going green was. 

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Vitamin D for Weight Loss... Not!

It has been an exciting week full of inspiration.  For those that know me well, know that I love to attend active meetings and events. I walked out of a big event for Shaklee Independent Distributors on Tuesday with new knowledge and a lot of inspiration. One such inspiration has to do with flu season that is knocking at our door and a new product that Shaklee has introduced, their new VITA-D3.

When I get excited, I have to take a step back and gather my thoughts, otherwise this blog would be filled with ramblings and useless information.  I have always been a little on the skeptical and distrusting side... "If it sounds to good to be true, it probably is", so when armed with a new idea, concept or resource that is "good for me" I research it.

We all know the importance of Vitamin D in our diets or through exposure to sunlight, but there seems to be a growing deficiency of vitamin D as the Australian Prescriber and others suggest.  You read about warnings against excessive exposure to sunlight, air pollution blocking sunlight, people spending less and less time outside at critical times of nourishing sunlight and of course there is our ever growing toxic food supply. Important note: The Australian Prescriber article stated best the risks of Vitamin D toxicity for those who take ridiculous amounts... "Stated best" because I got a chuckle out of the risks that made me wonder when someone will explore the potential for weight loss, or perhaps thats how they discovered the risks.  "Vitamin D intoxication causes hypercalcaemia and can present with symptoms of anorexia, nausea, constipation and depression."

Aside from the unhealthy weight loss potential... I discovered some very interesting information about Vitamin D, in that it has a lot of great potential that many may not be aware of and there are those that would suggest that it could even replace influenza immunization.  One such resource is The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition and it also links to other references & articles. If you are a fan of Natural News they also have an article referencing the AJCN above, as well as many other sources and thoughts. Benefits, aside from the norm and the potential for fighting the flu bug, may include suppression of asthma in children.

Obviously we can find lots of resources & information on the internet and in books at the Library.  We can form our own opinions, even before research, and find a lot of information to back those opinions. That being said, for your families health, always do your own research to make educated decisions to fit your specific family needs.  If I can help you with information on natural nutrition supplements or healthy home products, please visit my website at http://www.ahealthieryoutoo.com

Even if you have no interest in my business and its products, I would love to hear from you.  I am having  a lot of fun on my journey of discovery... For my daughter Kirsten who has Prader-Willi Syndrome and for myself.  You can comment below or contact me through my website. If you enjoy my Blog posts, I would greatly appreciate it if you would officially "Follow" me.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Unhealthy Battles that Rage Within Us

As I continue on my journey to better health for myself and my family, I continue to find new reasons and sources for improved health.

Is it just me or is there some information being hidden from the masses?  I'm talking about the unhealthy battles that rage within of us, that many may not be aware of. 

I bounce around a lot on the internet from blog to blog, source to source and I also attend events, meetings and training opportunities. When I hear or find something interesting, I research it.  Tonight at a Shaklee Independent Distributor event I listened to Shaklee's Dr. Jamie McManus, who is also author of  Your Personal Guide to Wellness, discuss Shaklee's anti aging tonic as well as several other natural nutritional supplements.  She was throwing out discouraging statistics about the world's failing health and some of the things contributing to that decline, one of which was the "inflammatory response" to eating and the cellular damage it can cause. WOW!!! I have never heard of that one and I thought to myself... my goodness were all doomed.   

As always, I jot a note to myself and as soon as I can... I go to the almighty internet for answers.  

What I found when searching "inflammatory response" was a lot of information about fatty acids, receptors, inflammatory cells, antigens, pro-inflammatory foods and many more words that require explanation or definitions to fully understand.  

Simply put: Inflammatory responses are your bodies defense against invaders such as bacteria or other  injurious agents, including physical injury. Unhealthy fats, such as trans fats and saturated fats used in some food processing, or chemicals such as nitrites in processed meats, are among the list of invaders that can trigger that response. These inflammatory responses can last for hours after each meal and if they continue because of a poor diet, can cause cellular damage that can lead to type 2 diabetes, heart disease, some cancers and a host of other problems.  

Think of it this way... If two opposing armies meet for a short battle on your lawn, the grass will likely be only matted in some areas and will recover fairly quickly.  But if they keep coming back, your lawn will get scared, worn and most likely the surrounding area will suffer damage as well, including permanent damage, like the loss of that mighty oak that provided you shade on your front porch.

To better understand these processes and how they can affect your future, please do as I do... Use the many, many resources on the internet to get a better understanding of the processes & struggles going on within each of us.  Environment, nutrition, proper diet and exercise are the keys to a healthier future.  If you would like information on natural nutritional supplements or healthy home products from the #1 Natural Nutrition Company in the U.S., please visit my website at www.ahealthieryoutoo.com

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Proceed in Health, With Caution...

I have been getting many questions lately about the successes of my daughter and myself, as far as our health is related. Especially because I started a new business as a Shaklee Independent Distributor some time before some of those successes. Shaklee has many great products that have many benefits for natural health, however, I am not qualified to suggest specific nutritional solutions for anyone because we all have differing needs. I couldn’t handle that kind of guilt!  

Everyone is looking for a healthy miracle. Perhaps those of us with health issues or loved ones who suffer are looking just a little harder. The fact is that no such miracle exists. Common sense and taking care of our body is most important. That includes proper nutrition, diet, exercise and... Professional medical advice. Decisions made affecting your health should be done through understanding & knowledge gained through research, professional medical advice and a 2nd opinion if necessary.

We must always... Proceed in health, with caution...

I met a young lady recently who is trying natural alternatives for treating her Multiple Sclerosis, as opposed to the treatments that can have some nasty side affects. She is a Shaklee Ind. Dist. and is using Shaklee products. She has seen the results of another and is excited to discus her success so far (I believe it has been a year), but cautions that this is a personal choice and follow up with medical professionals is crucial.

One of my relatives through marriage has high blood pressure and because of the economy, has struggled to make ends meet. To complicate matters, he can't afford health insurance or the doctor visits & prescriptions needed. He has always been a book worm and very intelligent, so he does know how to eat right to manage his high blood pressure... However, a recent work related infection sent him to the hospital and sent his blood pressure through the roof.

I have Hepatitis C (Gunshot “83” - Grenada) and have had treatment that didn't get rid of the virus, but it was effective enough to allow my liver to heal from stage 2 to stage 0. I have been able to avoid further treatments for the past 10 years, I believe, because I have taken care of myself. While being treated for Hepatitis C, my thyroid lost some function (one of the risks of synthetic drugs) and as a result, I have been on a thyroid medicine for the past 10 years. Although I have looked at natural options in the past to take the place of the medicine prescribed, I have never had the courage to try them because of the risk. Due to my overall glowing lab results from a recent doctors visit, I am working with my doctor to ween myself off the thyroid medicine. I believe that because of the potent regimen of nutritional supplements, including a cellular anti-aging tonic, that I have a good chance. That being said, I have done the research to make this decision and I have consulted my doctor who will be monitoring my progress closely.

One more story to share about my daughter who has Prader-Willi Syndrome. As parents of special needs children, we can get excited about things that seem to have life changing potential for our special needs children. I started using a very potent cellular anti-aging tonic and thought to myself... What if I gave this to my daughter? With the prescription medicines she is on and from what I have experienced myself from damage caused by medicines... Could this help her? I talked to her Endocrinologist and discovered (common sense) that children are still developing in many ways, including the chemistry that exists within them. To provide a supplement for a process that already exists, could inhibit that process and the development of that process. It is kind of like my thyroid. It may not come back fully after so many years of healing because it has had the crutch of medicine to lean on for so long.

The point of these stories is that we are different in age, weight, height, situation, health and body chemistry. There is no one size fits all remedy for what ails us. There are things we can use to improve our health, but only with proper understanding and plenty of cautious scrutiny.

I have used nutritional supplements off and on most of my life with great success, but I would never risk the health of my family without specific proven research or studies and never without the guidance of trained medical professionals. That being said, my opinion is that everyone needs the right nutritional supplements, especially those of us getting on in age. A lot of the food we eat today is getting more and more polluted with chemicals and government approved "acceptable levels" of toxins. And as a result of food processing and the effects of the processing, our foods can lose some of there nutritional value. It is getting harder to find a healthy balance.

The road to better health is a long one and requires persistence & patience. Proceed in health, with caution... In any decisions you make for your health, and contact me if you would like more information about Shaklee products. www.ahealthieryoutoo.com

Monday, September 6, 2010

The Weight is Over...

Can it be true? Have I finally achieved a new plateau and weight loss is on the horizon? Could it be that "the weight is over..."? Yeah... right.

I just celebrated my 51st birthday and my family took me out to dinner. We don't go out much anymore, so this was a real treat for all of us. We went to my favorite restaurant so I could get my favorite mexican skillet. My mouth watered with anticipation as the waitress brought out my long awaited special treat. And it was delicious!!! I savored every mouthful as I dug into my meal.

Half way through my meal I noticed a feeling I had not experienced for a long time and never from my favorite meal... I was feeling full! All sorts of thoughts began running through my head as to how such a thing could occur and ruin such a joyful experience. Did I eat to fast? Am I coming down with something? Did I drink to many liquids? IS MY STOMACH SHRINKING??? Could that be it? Could my stomach be shrinking? I had, been eating smaller amounts at meals for the past ten months because I share with my six year old who requires a special diet. That must be it I decided.

As always, anytime I get a thought, idea or question about the bodies chemistry or function... I go to the all mighty Internet to search for answers. I have been doing this for years, but with much more intensity over the past ten months as I have tried to get a better understanding in an effort to help my six year old who has Prader-Willi Syndrome (PWS). Diet is extremely important for her and with her condition, nutrition has also been a major concern of mine.

In my efforts to find out the feasibility of the stomach shrinking, I was disappointed to find that it is not possible (WebMD is a great resource). What I did find however were some interesting articles that suggested that body chemistry can also affect and trigger feelings of satiety for different reasons. Things I had read about before but these were presented in a different light and I had always looked for information, other than the chemical signals because the chemical process does not work properly in individuals with PWS like my daughter. It makes sense thought, that my body may have been telling me that I had reached my nutritional needs. I have been taking a very potent dose of daily supplements that may have, with some food intake, triggered a chemical process giving me that full feeling.

When you think about it, our body communicates with us in many ways and it is all controlled by chemical processes. Just as we join Toastmasters to improve our oral communication, we must do what it takes to improve the communication process within our bodies. You can, through Toastmasters, reduce and eliminate the verbal clutter in your oral communication to make you a more effective communicator and you can through proper diet, exercise and I can't emphasize enough the importance of proper nutrition... Reduce and eliminate some of the clutter affecting your bodies communication, to reenergize your bodies effectiveness in communication and weight management.

The weight “gain” IS over... But only with proper diet, exercise and nutrition.

For information on a Company with your health and safety in mind, please check out my website at www.ahealthieryoutoo.com. As a Shaklee Independent Distributor, I can introduce you to some wonderful nutritional, beauty, weight and healthy home products (and an opportunity to help others if your interested) from the #1 Natural Nutrition Company in the U.S.

One final note of interest, after successfully gaining control of my daughters weight, as well as my own, for the past nine months... I am excited to report that my six year old has lost five pounds over the past five weeks and I have lost three.