Tips And Tricks For Eating Healthy While Traveling
A lot of my patients have told me about their travel plans in the New Year. One of the biggest complaints I hear from them is how difficult they find it to stay on track with healthy eating while traveling.
So many people view getting out of town as free rein to eat whatever they want. And while it may not be the end of the world to indulge for a meal or two, consuming mass quantities of processed foods, carbohydrates, and alcohol at every single meal will have you feeling a lot more than just homesick.
Indulging in too much processed food, carbohydrates, and alcohol can cause inflammation, high blood pressure, and constipation. These symptoms are bad enough to deal with when you’re in the comfort of your own home, but if they hit while you’re away, you may have a recipe for disaster.
Plan ahead to stay on track.
If you’re driving to your destination then you really don’t have an excuse not to eat healthy foods. Without the constraints of air travel rules and regulations and without suitcase space being at a premium, you can pack a cooler for the road and stock the fridge when you reach your destination.
Pack up lots of your favorite kombucha and green juice.
Kombucha is fermented, which means it’s loaded with probiotics that help with inflammation and digestion. It also contains vitamin B and iron which may enhance oxygen flow by increasing hemoglobin in the blood, giving you an energy boost (and one that would be preferable over consuming more coffee!).
Green juices are great for supporting your immune system while traveling. They’re loaded with nutrients and provide a healthy dose of vitamin C.
If air travel is on the itinerary, you may not be able to take kombucha and green juice but you can pack a shaker and shake or smoothie powder (this one is my favorite and the sample sizes are perfect to take along on your travels). Fill the shaker with water once you’re through security and mix up a healthy shake whenever you need it.
Healthy snacks for air or car travel
If you’re craving something crunchy, don’t be tempted by the convenience and allure of vending machine Cheetos or peanut butter crackers!
Opt for nut chips or organic rice cakes instead. (Adding a little almond butter to organic rice cakes is one of my favorite satisfying snacks!)
And before leaving home, head to your nearest health food store (or order online) and stock up on raw, organic nuts and seeds - but make sure they have nothing on them! Flavored or salted nuts are usually processed with hydrogenated oils which contain trans fats that can lead to arterial plaque buildup, among other things.
Dates are a fantastic, whole food alternative to any of the processed, sugar-laden snack you might reach for. Plus, they’re high in fiber and antioxidants and are just as sweet as any candy.
My family is also a big fan of Granny Smith apples dipped in raw, organic cashew butter, and since it’s not something we usually eat at home, it feels like a treat. Granny Smith apples are the lowest glycemic index apple which will help when it comes to keeping your blood sugar stable.
Grab a bag of cut carrots and your favorite hummus for a satisfying snack on the go. Hummus is a great, protein-packed alternative to other unhealthy dips. Made with chickpeas, tahini, garlic, olive oil, and lemon, it’s loaded with healthy fat and fiber.
Olives are another great snack. They’re easily portable if you’re out and about and are a great source of heart-healthy fat and antioxidants. My family loves these handy travel pack olives.
Once you’ve reached your destination
Whether you’re a guest in someone’s home or staying in a hotel, feel NO SHAME for maintaining your healthy diet while traveling! Prioritizing your health is something you should be proud of!
Drinking hot water and tea are great ways to help those toxins flush out and help soothe your digestive tract, especially when enjoyed first thing in the morning. Plus, you can find hot water anywhere!
A good rule of thumb for healthy eating whether you’re traveling or not is to opt out of carbs and processed foods and opt in to whole foods.
This can feel tricky, especially if you’re staying in someone else’s home, but one of my favorite things to do in this situation is offer to help prepare a dish. “I make amazing brussels sprouts” or “I have this great salad recipe” allow you to be a wonderful, helpful house guest while also reaping the benefits in the form of having at least one, healthy, whole foods dish to enjoy. And even if you’re just a guest at someone’s home for dinner, I always let the host know that I’m bringing a salad to pass for this very same reason!
Sometimes, despite our best efforts, the change in routine, different foods, and different environmental factors can cause constipation. If that happens, I highly recommend taking a plant-based, multiform magnesium supplement daily, and increasing the dose if you still can’t go.
Eating healthy foods can be more challenging when you’re away from home, but with a little planning, “I can’t eat healthy when I travel” is no longer a valid argument. Take a vacation from work and the everyday stressors in your life, but don’t take a vacation from healthy eating.
Welcome 2019 with a Detox
We’re in the final days of 2018, and while we hope you’ve been experiencing your best health yet, you may still be struggling with a few lingering issues that you probably don’t want to invite into 2019.
Unexplained, chronic fatigue, frequent headaches or migraines, difficulty losing weight, are just a few of the MANY REASONS why it’s a good idea to do an annual system detox.
Each year Well Balanced Body offers a supervised purification program to both clear and support the systems with proper nutrition, so you can start the New Year feeling your best.
Our bodies are constantly exposed to external or environmental toxins as well as internal toxins that are due to challenges like poor digestion, certain enzyme deficiencies, and more.
Our bodies are designed to eliminate toxins with the help of the liver, kidney, bile, colon, lungs and lymph system, but if you’re not supporting your body with proper nutrition, your body’s own detoxification systems can no longer properly eliminate toxins. The toxins in turn accumulate in the tissues causing a whole host of annoying symptoms, like poor ability to shed excess weight, brain fog, acne, muscle tension, joint pain, and decreased organ function (like infertility) to name a few.
Even worse, toxins cling to fat cells, connective tissue, and organs like our brain, which can lead to a toxic body and brain. Yikes!
But won’t a detox make me feel like crap?
Most purification programs focus solely on eliminating the bad stuff. You’ll lose a few pounds, sure. But then the headache and sluggishness start.
If your purification program doesn’t incorporate proper nutrition, the toxins that release from your tissues can’t be properly eliminated from your system.
You’ll either end up putting back on every single pound you’ve lost, or you’ll keep the weight off but continue to feel like toxic garbage.
Our program is different
Well Balanced Body’s supervised purification program is a simple, whole food detox that supports your body’s entire detoxification system. Toxins will release from your tissues and be properly eliminated through your body’s own detoxification system with the support of proper nutrition.
No headache. No digestion issues. No feeling like garbage.
To see what’s included in this program, click here. (hint: no supplements, just shakes and REAL FOOD)
Is a detox right for me?
‘Detox’ can be a buzzword this time of year, but just because it’s on-trend doesn’t mean you should do it, especially if you’re not planning to do it correctly (i.e., without the support of proper nutrition).
So, let me ask you a few questions:
Bottom line: Your diet is not supporting your detox pathways and your body is depleted of nutrients.
Alright already, I’m in!
Our 28 day supervised purification program begins this year on Thursday, January 10th. If you want to start off 2019 feeling like your best self, call or text 916-936-5528, and get 10% off your detox order! Place your order today, so you'll have everything you need to start with us on the 10th.
Ready to really take your health to the next level in 2019? Join me for Functional Flow Yoga each Friday in 2019 at 4:30pm aka "Happy Hour" Yoga. Hope to see you there!
Happy New Year!
Your lungs + smoke
The devastating California wildfires have been affecting communities throughout the State. Some families living directly in their path have lost everything. Others who are further removed, like those of us in the Sacramento and surrounding areas, are experiencing symptoms like lung inflammation.
In my work I’ve treated numerous firefighters, and have seen firsthand the effects that smoke has on their bodies, specifically the lungs.
Most recently, the wildfires near us have been contained (thankfully!), but many of our patients are coming in with lung inflammation and trouble breathing. Those inflicted with asthma are especially feeling the affects.
Here are my top 5 tips to keep your lungs healthy:
Get Adjusted By Your Chiropractor
Positive clinical outcomes - increased chest expansion and oxygen rate post-adjustment - are seen in my office daily, not to mention the increased healthy immune system response that has been proven with Chiropractic adjustments.
For even better results, see a Chiropractor who specializes in Applied Kinesiology. They are able to dive deeper into respiratory function, looking at diaphragmatic control and neuro-lymphatic drainage of the lung.
Chiropractic also can address possible misalignment of cervical vertebrae which transmits nerve impulses to the diaphragm, which in turn, helps the diaphragm (your primary breathing muscle) function optimally.
Lung inflammation can also be linked to the consumption of inflammatory foods.
The top 5 inflammatory foods to avoid in order of priority are:
Need more specific recommendations - check out my healthy eating guide
There are also a few things you can consume that help with lung function:
1.Vitamin e rich oils, olive oil, wheat germ oil. Please note: wheat germ does not contain gluten, so calm down!
2. Fatty fish- salmon, mackerel, sardines and anchovies.
3. Nuts and seeds (all organic).
4. Veggies. Lots of them! The main vegetables to be sure to include in your diet are garlic, onions and the cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, kale, collards, cabbage, cauliflower, watercress, etc).
5. Drink more water than usual. Recommended daily intake is half your body weight in ounces. I would add an extra 40 ounces to that with lemon and lime.
Take Whole Food Supplements
The Number One supplement I recommend to allow for better lung function is wheat germ oil.
Cold processed wheat germ oil is a gluten-free concentrate made from the germ of the wheat kernel and provides the WHOLE vitamin E complex. Vitamin E is not just alpha tocopherol, which is ONLY the antioxidant or PROTECTOR of vitamin E complex. Vitamin E complex works together to support hormone precursors, support integrity of the tissues, and maximize oxygen levels. Wheat Germ Oil is the most concentrated, natural source of the complete vitamin E complex in the world.
WGO is also a source of octacosanol, a nutrient that can increase your endurance and physical performance.
A close second to WGO is vitamin E, which is good for vascular health, promotes cardiovascular health, prevents heart disease and age-related macular degeneration.
I recommend taking this supplement to all my firefighter patients, anyone trying to increase muscular endurance, and to those who go to places of high altitude. Plus, people that have a personal or family history of cardiovascular health complications.
WARNING: Do not consume synthetic OTC vitamin E - as it most likely ONLY contains the antioxidant portion of the vitamin E complex. Make sure you only consume whole food natural wheat germ oil. This supplement can be purchased through your natural health care provider who supply’s Standard Process Supplements.
Diffuse essential oils
My favorite oil blend to diffuse for lung health is Breathe by DoTerra. Lime and lemon are also great options to diffuse in your home.
And last but not least…
Check out a local yoga studio that will help you breathe better during class.
Yoga teaches us specific breathing techniques that are always beneficial, but are especially so when we’re dealing with the effects of smoke in the air.
Be sure to check out our next class functional flow this coming Friday (tomorrow), 11/30 at 430pm. The style of this class is vinyasa flow with an emphasis this week on opening the lungs - including the rib cage and thoracic spine (mid-back) taught by yours truly.
Lastly, those of you who have been asking me about how to help. Check out Cal Fund
Celebrating St. Patrick’s Day Without Alcohol Photo via Pixabay by Jill111 St. Patrick’s Day is a time for fun and celebration all over the country, but over the years it has become synonymous with a day full of drinking. For individuals who are in recovery or who simply don’t drink, it can be difficult to find activities or events that celebrate the holiday rather than alcohol.
However, there are many ways you can have fun this year that don’t involve imbibing; it just takes a bit of creativity and some planning. Not only is it important for individuals who are in recovery to steer clear of places and events that could cause a potential relapse, it’s a good way to have a great time with your family and spend the day with each other rather than partying. It’s also an incentive to stay safe instead of getting behind the wheel after celebrating; look for family-friendly activities here.
Here are a few of the best ways to have fun on St. Patrick’s Day without alcohol.
Look to your city for help
Many cities around the country hold St. Patrick’s Day parades and events that are fun for all ages; you might spend the day with your kids, taking in free music, eating good food, and engaging in fun activities like face painting or dancing. Look online to find out what your city is offering up on that day, or consider taking a little road trip to a nearby town to check out what events they have going on.
Learn something new
Ireland is full of history and rich culture, yet the festivities of St. Patrick’s Day rarely focus on them. Take this day to learn something new about Ireland and its people; look up a classic Irish recipe and cook it for dinner, find out more about your favorite Irish actor, or dig into some Irish music. It’s not all Celtic woodwinds; there are some great contemporary Irish bands and musicians who have found popularity in the U.S., such as The Cranberries, U2, Flogging Molly, and The Corrs.
Refraining from drinking on St. Patrick’s Day may make you feel left out, but it doesn’t mean you can’t have fun. Partner up with a sober friend and go out to dinner, or stay in and binge-watch some Irish-centric Netflix shows and movies. Here’s a list of a few of the best. If you’d rather be out with your friends, offer to be the DD for the night to get them all home safely.
A great way to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with your family is to look up some Irish lit. Head to the library and look up poetry and fairy tales with roots in Ireland, then head home and have storytime. Encourage your children to make up their own fairy tales and talk about how they can be an allegory for something else. Use this time to teach your little ones about writing and using their imaginations.
Learn to dance
One of the things the Irish people are known for is dancing, so push back the coffee table and look up a tutorial on YouTube. Legend has it that the traditional form of Irish dance--which mostly moves the feet and legs but keeps the upper body straight--came about because pubs were so crowded back in the day that dancers had to be creative with how they moved.
Celebrating St. Patrick’s Day can be anything you make it; don’t feel as though you have to rely on alcohol to have a good time. Talk to your family members about the best ways you can have fun together without heading to a pub and turn it into a new tradition.
Gluten-free and worried about arsenic in rice? What to know
Gluten-free folks accustomed to eating rice-based gluten-free breads, pastas, cereals, and other substitutes may be consuming dangerously high levels of arsenic.
In fact, a 2017 study showed people on a gluten-free diet consuming rice-based products on a regular basis showed almost twice as much arsenic in their urine compared to those who did not (and 70 percent more mercury, another troublesome finding.)
Why arsenic is harmful
Arsenic is a naturally occurring heavy metal. It is the inorganic arsenic (not bound to carbon) that is toxic to humans if levels ingested are too high.
Although inorganic arsenic occurs naturally, it also accumulates in soil and water due to pesticides and fertilizers. Because rice grows in water, it is the grain highest in arsenic.
Consistent exposure to small amounts of arsenic increases the risk of bladder, lung, and skin cancer, as well as heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and neurological disorders. Consuming arsenic during pregnancy may affect the baby’s immune system.
Consumer Reports found one serving of rice pasta, rice cereal, and rice milk exceeded a safe amount of arsenic for one week while one serving of rice cakes came close.
The FDA recently proposed a limit of 100 parts per billion of arsenic in infant rice cereal. However, it’s impossible to know how much arsenic is safe to consume as risk is dose dependent; the more you consume the higher the risk.
How to minimize arsenic exposure from rice
These troubling truths about arsenic exposure through rice don’t have to spell doom for gluten-free folks who depend on rice-based substitutes.
For starters, look for products made from other grains besides rice. Thankfully, there are many more on the market these days.
Look at where your rice comes from. In 2014 Consumer Reports found that rice from Arkansas, Louisiana, or Texas had the highest concentrations of inorganic arsenic while California rice has almost 40 percent less arsenic. Brown basmati rice from California, India, or Pakistan has a third less inorganic arsenic than other brown rices.
Unfortunately, because the arsenic comes from the water, organic rice may not be lower in arsenic.
Eat white rice (sorry!). Since arsenic tends to accumulate in the outer layers that are removed to turn brown rice into white, white rice contains less of the toxin than the whole grain.
Rinse your rice thoroughly and cook in excess water. Wash your rice thoroughly before cooking and then cook your rice in a ratio of about six cups of water to one cup of rice and drain the excess water after. This cuts down arsenic levels by about one third compared to letting rice absorb all the water during cooking.
Consider a grain-free diet. Many people feel and function significantly better on a grain-free diet. If you don’t eat rice-based products, excessive arsenic exposure is one less thing to worry about in a world where we are constantly at battle with toxic chemicals and heavy metals.
Ask my office for more ways to protect yourself from toxic chemicals and heavy metals.