Lose Belly Fat with these Foods

We hear it all the time - stress kills. Stress is super bad for your health. But did you know that stress also causes your body to store fat around your midsection. And, as you may already know, that fat is very hard to lose. The hormone that makes this happen is cortisol & most people don’t know what signs to look for.

Signs of High Cortisol

  • Weight Gain (especially in your abdomen)

  • Blood Sugar Imbalances (crave sugar?? get shaky when you don’t eat regularly??)

  • Losing muscle mass

  • Memory Loss

  • Poor quality sleep/tired even when you’ve slept well

  • Unexplained backaches and headaches

  • Catch colds and infections easily

  • Cravings for unhealthy foods

  • Poor sex drive

  • Anxious/depressed feelings

  • Stomach issues like nausea, abdominal cramps, diarrhea, heartburn or constipation

Some of these clicking in your head? I know when I read these I was thinking...Bingo!! Now, what to do about it?? Because I don’t know about you but I want to have rejuvenating sleep and a thinner waistline. Oh, and I need my memory to be on point if I’m going to learn my scenes! ;)

Lower Cortisol by…

Eating more Spinach - these greens have Magnesium which helps the body balance cortisol levels.

Adding Beans (White) and Barley to your diet - they contain a phospholipid that may help counteract the adverse effects of cortisol by having a calming effect on your nerves and improving your sleep.

Snacking on Citrus -the vitamin C in fruits like kiwis, oranges and grapefruits help slow the production of cortisol and are better for your waistline than carb-rich snacks.

Upping your Omega 3 Fatty Acids - found in fish like mackerel, sardines and haddock and nuts like walnuts and flaxseeds not only do these reduce inflammation in your body but they also reduce your stress levels and hence, your cortisol!

Eating Microgreens - are baby plants (less than 14 days old) that have a higher concentration of nutrients than adult plants. Micro versions of cilantro and red cabbage may contain up to 4 to 6 times the stress fighting vitamin C as their mature counterparts.

Drinking Tulsi (Holy Basil) Tea - is an effective way to reduce your stress/anxiety levels. This herb is an adaptogen that helps reduce the production of stress hormones. This is definitely on my list of nightcaps! :)

Adding a good Zinc supplement -  can help inhibit the secretion of cortisol according to studies. Make sure your diet has solid sources of zinc; 3 ounces of lean, grass fed beef via a pot roast, short ribs or round steak is a good start.  Or you can opt for some seafood, like oysters - 6 medium sized oysters contain over 70 mg of zinc.

Eating some (Quality) Dark Chocolate - by some I mean a piece or two and of good, organic quality. Dark Chocolate has tons of antioxidants that can decrease the inflammation in your body and slow cortisol production. The results of one study indicated that consuming about 40 grams of dark chocolate per day reduced cortisol levels.

I know I’ve got my marching orders!! :)  I’m not going to allow the routine stress of day to day life to add inches to my waistline. Adding a meditation practice into your life is another way to reduce your stress and manage your cortisol levels too. Take these tips, turn them into daily practices and you will rest easier and watch the excess inches melt away.

Schedule a Self-discovery Session with me at  https://www.timetrade.com/book/B6X4N

Burn Fat with Cinnamon

It’s Springtime, finally!!! And I am seeing a lot of people hitting the gym in preparation for bikini season. I am slightly amused because they could’ve been ahead of the curve if they stayed true to their New Years’ Resolutions but alas, we are a culture that is obsessed with instant gratification. The thing is that things don’t change overnight. No matter what the TV or the movies say change is something that develops over time. Whether it is change in our bodies or in our health it is consistency that matters the most. I learned this the hard way over the past several years. Fad diets don’t work. Starving myself doesn’t work. Surgery doesn’t work. The results are unsustainable, at best, because there I don’t change my day to day habits!

Now that I am wiser I aim for four things:

  1. Fat loss over weight loss

  2. Nutrient-rich foods - what makes up a calorie matters, NOT just the calorie

  3. Regular Exercise - for the endorphins and the fabulous, fit looking body

  4. 90/10 Rule - Eat healthy foods 90% of the time, leaving room for the occasional treat

Everyone knows that Green Tea encourages fat loss and improves physical performance, which is why it is one of my favorite things to drink. But not everyone knows about cinnamon! To change it up I started drinking a tea made from a cinnamon stick and dried goji berries. Goji berries have tons of anti-oxidants and have a long history of being a longevity-promoting and beautifying food. But cinnamon is also very impressive.

Some top benefits of Cinnamon are:

  1. Boosting brain function

  2. Preventing fat storage, especially in the belly

  3. Anti-microbial properties, which makes it great for fighting colds and flus

  4. Helps control blood sugar level

  5. Rich in Manganese, Iron, Calcium and Fiber

  6. Improves circulation, which helps aid digestion

Cinnamon you had me at preventing fat storage!! I am enjoying this tea daily and I sprinkle ½ teaspoon of cinnamon on my chia pudding or in my coffee as well!

The type of cinnamon you want to buy is Ceylon Cinnamon. You can find it at Whole Foods or your neighborhood health market or on Amazon. Frontier Natural Products is the company that I buy my cinnamon from. Ceylon cinnamon is preferred over the more common Cassia, because it has less coumarin, which is better for the liver, tastes better and is sustainably grown.

Chicken & Dried Apricots Tagine

1 ½ lbs organic chicken thighs

1 medium red onion, organic

1 (~⅓ cup) handful parsley, organic

1 (~⅓ cup) handful cilantro, organic

½ dried Turkish apricots, organic

1 ½ cups water

2 tbsp olive oil, organic

1 tbsp butter, organic

1 tsp Tagine spices

½ tsp Allspice powder

½ tsp ground coriander

1 tsp Himalayan salt

Place the 2 tbsp olive oil, 1 tsp Tagine spices, ½ tsp allspice, ½ tsp ground coriander in a bowl & coat the thighs in the spices. Melt butter in pan & brown the chicken thighs over medium-high heat (~2-3 minutes per side). Transfer to chicken to plate. Start cooking the onions over medium heat (~2-3 minutes). When they are half translucent, add the garlic, and cook for another 2 minutes. Add the parsley & the cilantro, cooking for ~3 minutes. Toss in the dried apricots & cook for ~1 minute. Return the browned chicken to the pan with juices. Add 1 ½ c of water & let chicken simmer over low-medium heat. Simmer for 30 minutes.

You can also use cinnamon oil in your home to disinfect and sanitize surfaces, especially those surfaces on which you’ve prepared raw meats, with a solution of 1% cinnamon oil and purified water.

 

Schedule a Self-discovery Session with me at  https://www.timetrade.com/book/B6X4N