choices

13 11, 2020

Choices

2020-11-13T13:26:40-05:00November 13th, 2020|Motivational Letters|

The choice to have or not have snacks or extra portions of food, comes down to giving in to our pleasure receptors, or suffering the pain of denying those receptors.  More often than not, the pleasure area of the brain wins. When I'm told "It’s hard", I couldn't agree more.  It is not easy (especially during these long dark evenings) to stop ourselves from gravitating to the fridge or cupboards, looking for some sort of snack. Even as I type this, my emotional mind is thinking about snacks.  Fortunately, I have a greater desire to try and finish this article [...]

8 10, 2020

Helplessness or Optimism

2020-10-08T15:11:05-04:00October 8th, 2020|Motivational Letters|

As I was tidying up the other day, I came across some old lecture notes from an Obesity Medicine conference we attended about 9 years ago. I remember feeling privileged to listen to a keynote lecture by Dr. Denis Waitley. He is a Psychologist, and at that time, was an advisor to the American Olympic team. His talk was on how we, as individuals, have choices: emotional choices. We can listen to the internal voice of helplessness or turn our minds towards optimism. He noted that it takes about 600 days for an athlete to develop a consistent habit of [...]

28 09, 2020

Work Towards your Metabolic Health

2020-09-28T14:22:24-04:00September 28th, 2020|Motivational Letters|

I am hoping my role is to help people become healthier, and not just focused on the number on the scale; of course we become healthier as we lose weight, but we can also become healthier well before weight loss. What is metabolic health? It’s a combination of factors including: regular activity, proper sleep, decreasing stress and a nutritious diet.   As we focus on each of these factors, our immune health (think COVID) improves, inflammation reduces, we lower triglycerides  and increase good cholesterol, we lower blood pressure, reduce fat in the liver (a huge risk to our health),  and in [...]

31 07, 2020

The Evening Snack Struggle

2020-07-31T13:53:15-04:00July 31st, 2020|Motivational Letters|

If there is one area of eating (or nibbling) that I could eradicate in all of us, it’s the mindless snacking we all seem to do in the evening. Mind you, I do meet the rare person who doesn’t have the urge to nibble while watching TV or reading a book. I’ve talked about my own struggles with this before, but it bears repeating. We all know that eating at this time is rarely out of hunger, it’s simply the desire to eat. The major issue, as you all know, is that these are extra calories (usually in the carbohydrate [...]

28 07, 2020

Keep Moving Forward

2020-07-28T13:40:42-04:00July 28th, 2020|Motivational Letters|

We all find ourselves at a crossroad when it comes to ‘diets’: do we continue despite frustrations, or just give up and try something else (even if something else has worked short term in the past, only to result in weight regain). There must be a certain tenacity when it comes to a healthy way of living; whether it’s in regards exercise (or lack thereof), the quality and quantity of food, getting enough sleep, or learning strategies to manage stress. There will be days, or weeks, of really poor food choices. There could be many reasons: friends visiting, a partner [...]

3 07, 2020

Thought Barriers, Defenses and Rationalizations

2020-07-03T12:11:52-04:00July 3rd, 2020|Motivational Letters|

I was thinking about my own rationalizations around habits recently, and remembered a letter I sent out 10 years ago that really touched on this subject.  I wanted to go back to it here, as so many patients I speak with are dealing with the same issue of thought barriers and rationalizations when it comes to making healthy changes. What is it that allows us to take our focus off our desire for successful weight loss and better health? We all share the hope to be optimally healthy, yet, in a flash, our minds come up with some pretty ‘acceptable’ [...]

29 06, 2020

Tomorrow is a New Day

2020-06-29T16:07:07-04:00June 29th, 2020|Motivational Letters|

After a number of days of hit-and-miss when it came to choosing proper foods (I’m trying to think about health mainly, fat loss being a factor in that), I was pretty frustrated with my inconsistency. You must realize: I’m constantly listening to medical podcasts discussing the positive results of good nutrition on metabolic and immune health; nevertheless, what I was listening to, and my poor food choices were inconsistent. I desperately wanted to be eating and exercising for optimal health. Yes, I was in a funk. I was disappointed in myself; disappointed in my food choices, food timing, sleep, exercise [...]

14 06, 2020

Today’s Habits for Tomorrow’s Health

2020-06-14T13:55:12-04:00June 14th, 2020|Motivational Letters|

One of my personal questions is: if we could more accurately measure how our choices impact our health, would we change behaviours? If we knew specifically that what we were eating or snacking on was improving, or worsening, our immune system, accelerating the aging process, or increasing our risk of dementia, would we make different food choices? If we knew that a certain dose of exercise doubled our mitochondria, improved heart function and improved endurance, while it also improved anxiety and depression, would we make that dose of exercise a priority? If we knew that only getting 5 hours of [...]

22 05, 2020

Choose Your Future Self

2020-05-22T20:53:34-04:00May 22nd, 2020|Motivational Letters|

Over the last few months, I’ve listened to many people tell me how they “just can’t stop snacking in the evening.” Or, they talk about how they “just can’t get back on track.” These are challenging times. Many have felt the burden of added stress.  All of us are on different boats in the same storm.  However, the comments above reflect choices being made. When people make comments like this, they have pre-determined that they are unable to stop snacking. When you choose to see yourself as incompetent or incapable, you will experience incompetence and incapability. When you choose to [...]

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