A Green Smoothie to fight Colds & Flus

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by: Dr. Tomeka Day, MD

It’s that time of the year again.  The time when the leaves change to a beautiful array of colors, and the milder weather sets in.  Soothing spices such as cinnamon,  nutmeg, and pumpkin are added to many foods and beverages.  Fall festivals and local fairs occur, where the rippling sounds of laughter and swirling rides, and the aromas of fried apples, turkey legs, corn dogs, and funnel cakes fill the air.  Sunday afternoon gatherings occur in homes after church with breaking of bread, and the cheers and yells echo through rooms from the excitement of NFL and NBA games.  All of these wonderful moments make fall a much anticipated season! 5

But with all the joys of fall, comes some kickbacks.  This is also the time that many viruses love as well.  There are several viruses, such as Rhinovirus (Cold), Influenza (Flu), Parainfluenza, and RSV that can thrive in cool and cold weather.  So, the cold and flu season, is very much a part of the joys of fall, Ugh!!! Because of this, I want to share a Green Smoothie that will boost your immune system and help you prevent and fight back against all the colds, flus, and viruses.

Here is a recipe for a Green Smoothie that I enjoy, that will taste good and  give your immune system a boost to fight back against all of the viruses of the cold and flu season.

Green Smoothie for Immune System Boost:

Ingredients:

  • 1 whole  fresh apple
  • 1 whole fresh banana
  • 1  1/2 cup of fresh or frozen blueberries
  • 2 1/2 cups of fresh or frozen spinach
  • 1 cup of greek yogurt (any flavor)
  • 1/2 cup of almond milk
  • Optional 1 tbsp of peanut butter
  • 2 teaspoons of cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon of turmeric powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon of nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon of ginger
  • 2 teaspoons of honey
  • 1 cup of ice

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Directions:  Add all of the above ingredients to your blender.  Blend on high for 1 minute, or until you get a smooth consistency.  Stop, and pour from your blender, and begin to enjoy this healthy and delicious smoothie to strengthen your immune system.

Now that you have added a recipe that will strengthen your immune system, you can enjoy the beauty and bliss of the Autumn Season!

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Author: “Dr. Tomeka” Day, MD is the Founder and CEO of Flourish Health Coaching, LLC.  She is helping busy women  and their families through her health coaching by focusing on nutrition and lifestyle changes.  As a result of her health coaching, busy women are equipped with the knowledge and tools they need to provide nutritious and quick meals, become healthy and improve health conditions such as,  Type 2 Diabetes/ Adult Onset Diabetes, Hypertension, Hypercholesterolemia, Inflammatory diseases, and weight issues so they are able to enjoy their life and flourish in their God given purpose.

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Help! Am I eating too much sugar?

by: Dr. Tomeka Day, MD

The sweet taste of natural food such as berries, has not only been delightful from the beginning of time, but also useful for mankind to identify what food was safe to eat.  They would continue to eat the foods such as berries if they had a sweet taste to them, and tend to avoid those that were bitter tasting.   As the sugar cane crop became more prominent globally, the production of sugar in its refined form increased, thereby making refined sugar more available at affordable prices.  Now processed foods with added sugars are widely available. According to the Department of Health and Human Services,  the average American ate only 2 pounds of added sugar a year two hundred years ago. In 1970,  Americans ate 123 pounds of added sugar per year. Today, the average American consumes almost 152 pounds of added sugar in one year. This is equal to 3 pounds (or 6 cups) of added sugar consumed in one week!

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Let’s briefly discuss the benefits of sugar or carbohydrates.  Carbohydrates are essential for human life.  They are sources of energy for the cells in our body to function normally, such as the brain, heart, and lungs. Cellulose is found in the cell walls of plants and give it structure.  Our bodies have the ability to store sugar for energy source during periods of fasting. Carbohydrates are necessary for the structure of genetic material in our bodies, as well as biochemical processes.

Now, carbohydrates are  biomolecules made up of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen that have different forms for sugar. There are various forms of carbohydrates, monosaccharides, disaccharides, and polysaccharidesMonosaccharides, have one molecule, such as glucose, fructose, or  galactoseDiscaccharides have two molecules, such as glucose + fructose, which is sucrose (table sugar), and lactosePolysaccharides have many molecules, such as, starch, glycogen, and cellulose in plants.  So if you see any of the above terms on labels of food products, know that this is a form of sugar.

Sugar can be found in so many different places naturally.  Fructose is found in fruits, honey, some vegetable roots, cane, and corn syrup. Galactose is found in milk.  Glucose is found in fruits, and plant juices.  Maltose is found in certain grains, such as barley. Starch is found in rice and potatoes. Sucrose is found in sugar cane and roots of sugar beets. Lactose is also found in milk.

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Additional sugars are added to pre-packaged and many processed foods that you may not think about. Here are some foods that have more sugar than you may think added to them.  Foods such as yogurt, condiments such as ketchup, honey mustard, bbq sauce and salad dressings, chocolate milk, energy drinks, cereals, cereal bars, crackers, breads, vitamin waters, pre-made soups, canned baked beans, canned fruits, and of course desserts, candies,  juices and sodas.

While Sugar or carbohydrates are important for human life, too much of it can be very problematic. Excess sugar consumption can cause conditions such as, Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus, Heart Disease, Obesity, Dementia, and Dental Decay.  According to the American Heart Association,  70% of American adults are obese or overweight, which increases the risk of  Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus, Heart Disease, Stroke, and High Blood pressure.  Furthermore,

  • Nearly one in three (31.8%) U.S. children (23.9 million) ages 2 to 19 are overweight or obese.
  • More than one-third (about 35%) of U.S. adults are obese (more than 78 million adults).

How do we know when we’ve had too much sugar?  The American Heart Association recommends no more than 6 teaspoons (25 grams) of added sugar for women, and 9 teaspoons (38 grams) for men.  They recommend 3 – 6 teaspoons (12 -25 grams)/day for children.  What does all this mean? The average candy bar has 6 teaspoons of added sugar in it, 1 cup of vanilla ice cream has 7 teaspoons of added sugar, and 1 (12oz) can of regular soda has 9 teaspoons of sugar in it.  Therefore, if you had 1 can of soda with each meal, three times a day, that is 27 teaspoons of added sugar in one day from just the soda alone!  That is 4.5 x more than the recommended daily amount of added sugar.

Now you may be saying to yourself, “how can I lower the amount of sugar in my diet?”  The American Heart Association recommendations are for added sugars to foods.  So, your sugar amount should be 45-65% of total calories consumed daily.  And your carbohydrates should come from foods that contain it naturally, such as fruits, vegetables, and grains.  The 6 or 9 teaspoons are added sugars to foods, such as what would be in processed or boxed foods, desserts, juices, sodas, or cereals. So this would mean that when you prepare your meals, you want to limit pre-packaged, and processed foods as much as possible.  You would want to prepare your meals with fresh or frozen fruits, vegetables and whole grains, meats and dry beans for your protein, but limit the amount of sugar that you add to your food.

Adjusting your diet to meet the recommended guidelines, can certainly be a lifestyle change which may take time, but the positive results are certainly worth it.  As I stated above, there are so many prevalent conditions in America that can be prevented by limiting the amount of excess sugar and maintaining a healthy weight.

 

Author: “Dr. Tomeka” Day, MD is the CEO and Founder of Flourish Health Coaching, LLC.  She is helping career women and busy moms, and their children through her health coaching by focusing on nutrition and lifestyle changes.  As a result of her health coaching, career women and busy moms are equipped with the knowledge and tools they need to provide nutritious and quick meals, become healthy or improve health conditions such as,  Type 2 Diabetes/ Adult Onset Diabetes, Hypertension, Hypercholesterolemia, Inflammatory diseases, and weight issues through nutrition and lifestyle changes, optimize self-care, discover their God-given talents, as well as, help their kids obtain and/or maintain healthy weight through healthy eating and habits.  If you want more information on health coaching services and a free health coaching consultation.  Contact Dr. Tomeka MD.

 

Copywright.  Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without expressed and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner, is strictly prohibited.

 

 

 

5 Simple Ways to Get Fit and Fabulous

By: Dr. T.G. Day, MD

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As a busy mom or woman, it is important to figure out simple ways to get in shape and stay in shape.  The days can be consumed with so many must do items, that exercising can be the last thing on the list that doesn’t get done.  As a busy mom, I often look for the tried and true ways that will yield the greatest and sustainable results. We all know that being physically active is important for many reasons, but how can a busy mom or woman get this done?

#1 Identify the Benefits: Just to recap, exercising is so very beneficial for our bodies.  It increases overall energy, which helps us get more things done.  It can stabilize mood and blood sugar levels, which can prevent or manage Depression and Type II Diabetes respectively. Exercise also helps the heart to be healthier, and decrease the risk of heart disease. I wrote more about exercise and the heart in a previous blog post, 5 ways to Have a Healthy Heart, https://flourishwithdrtgdayhealthcoach.com/2018/03/02/5-ways-to-have-a-healthy-heart/.

#2 Allocate the time:  We know that every second of a busy mom’s and woman’s time is so precious.  Therefore, we need to make sure we are maximizing our time and getting the most out of every second.  So how much should we exercise each week for positive results? The American Heart Association exercise recommendations are, at least 150 minutes per week of moderate exercise or 75 minutes per week of vigorous exercise (or a combination of moderate and vigorous activity).  Ok, now ask yourself, how much time can I set aside each week for exercise? 2 days? 3 days? 4 days? or more? Whatever is a reasonable goal for you, divide the recommended minutes by the number of days you have allocated. So if you have 3 days, 150 min divided by 3 = 50 minutes of moderate exercise 3 days a week.  You will also experience benefits even if you divide your time into two or three segments. So if you don’t have 50 consecutive minutes, then maybe 25 minutes in morning, and 25 minutes in the evening, 3 days a week.

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#3 Set the Mission: Now the mission is to exercise 150 minutes moderately, or 75 minutes vigorously weekly to get the best benefits per the American Heart Association. So what exactly is moderate and vigorous exercise? According to the Center for Disease Control, moderate exercise is defined as exercise that increases a person’s heart rate to 50 -70% of their maximum heart rate based on the person’s age. The maximum heart rate per age is determined by subtracting a person’s age from 220.  Here’s an example, for a 40 year old person, it would be 220-40 = 180 beats per minute (bpm). Therefore, 50% level would be: 180 x 0.50 = 90 bpm, and 70% level would be: 180 x 0.70 = 126bpm, so (90bpm – 126bpm). Vigorous exercise is defined as a person’s target heart rate should be 70 to 85% of his or her maximum heart rate. So for a 40 year old person, it should be 126bpm – 153bpm.

#4 Know your options:  Sometimes being busy, it’s hard to take time to explore the many options that we have to exercise. Here are some very remarkable ways to exercise.  Walking outside.  A brisk walk through the park or your neighborhood can be a great way to enjoy nature while getting your exercise in.  Remember to walk at a pace that reaches your targeted heart rate.  You could use devices such as, a fitbit to determine your heart rate while you are exercising.

If walking outside isn’t an option, consider walking on a treadmill indoors, or walking indoors period. Again, remember your time and heart rate goals.

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Running is a great way to exercise.  Running outdoors again allows you to connect with nature, while running indoors on a treadmill can be just as beneficial.  Consider participating in a local or national 5k or 10k race.  This can be a great way to motivate you to prepare for the event, and contribute to organizations for a good cause.

Dancing, zumba, step aerobics, kickboxing, hiking,  or swimming  are other remarkable ways to exercise to reach your fitness goals.

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#5 Understand how the body changes with age:  As we are blessed to continue to grow wiser in years and age, our bodies continue to go through changes.  The same things that we would’ve done a decade ago for results, may not be the case now.  Knowing this helps us to be strategic about our workout plan and efficient with our time.  Strength training becomes extremely important as we age.  As we age, the body’s percent of muscle declines, therefore, strength training becomes essential to build muscles.  Additionally, muscle has a higher metabolic rate than fat, and therefore, you can actually lose inches and weight faster, because the muscle burns calories actively and at a state of rest.    Studies have shown good results for preventing age-related abdominal fat in individuals 40 years who weight train for 20 minutes three times a week.

Now that we have the 5 simple ways to get fit and fabulous, let’s start a new journey, start today.  As a busy mom or woman, you are so valuable and you have great purpose, but don’t forget about your self-care.  Self-care is not selfish, it is simply allowing your pitcher to be refilled so that you can continue to give to others. Remember, Health is Wealth!

Check out this affiliate Amazon Link for exercise dumbbells.

Author: Dr. T.G. Day, MD (Dr. Tomeka)  is the CEO and Founder of Flourish Health Coaching, LLC.  She is helping busy moms and busy women “Get the Balance” through nutritional health coaching.  As a result of her health coaching, busy moms and busy women are equipped with the knowledge and tools they need to provide nutritious and quick meals, become healthy or improve health conditions such as,  Type 2 Diabetes/ Adult Onset Diabetes, Hypertension, Hypercholesterolemia, Inflammatory diseases, and weight issues through nutrition and lifestyle changes, optimize self-care, discover their God-given talents, as well as, help their kids obtain and/or maintain healthy weight through healthy eating and habits.  Please contact Dr. T.G. Day, MD (Dr. Tomeka)  for a free health coaching consultation.

 

Copywright.  Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission, from this blog’s author and/or owner, is strictly prohibited.