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Friday, December 30, 2016

Looking Forward to a Fresh Start


We are just days away from the New Year. At this point at the end of the year most of us can hardly wait until it is over. We want to start fresh. The year we are in has a year’s worth of baggage we would just as soon let go off by starting a new year and starting the clock over.

Some of that baggage is the weight we have gained, particularly over the past month of holiday parties and treats we couldn’t say “no” to. Now we are bloated, the pants are too tight and we are tired of feeling this way.

In comes the New Year.  It comes with all new possibility. We don’t have to be the way we were. We don’t have to hold on to the same bad habits. We can have a do-over.

Change may not be that easy to accomplish but we love, in fact, we need to believe it is possible. And when we look back on our lives we can point to many times we have changed. As my mom always loved to remind me: Change is inevitable, it is how you manage that change that makes the difference in how you succeed in life.


Sometimes the most important element in our success is believing it is possible. If we don’t think we can do something we probably can’t. On the other hand, if we really want to change and we believe it is possible to change we are already on the road to succeeding in sustaining that change.

A little planning helps too. It is hard to create change if we continue to do things the way we have always done them. Hitting our heads against the wall over and over again will get the same result—a sore head! If we really want change we need to switch things up. In our kitchen we need to get rid of the old prepackaged snacks and carbs to then bring in the new bowl full of fresh fruit and precut veggies in the fridge.  We need to make a plan for exercising, which includes some form of accountability so we can help ourselves achieve our goals in fitness and weight loss. And we need to invest in the tools for living a healthier lifestyle from getting right-sized dishes to help right size your meals; to purchasing an easy to fill water bottle that is also dishwasher safe; to finding the right fitness tracker, like a Fitbit, to help you stay mindful of your movement; to getting a well-fitting new pair of running shoes you need to make exercising more enjoyable and less painful on the feet and joints. And don’t forget to seek out friends who want to achieve the same thing and who care about living a healthy lifestyle. Mutual support goes a long way towards helping us make real, long term change.

As we look forward to the New Year let’s embrace the hope of a healthy start that opens the door to learning new ways of doing things so we can, in fact, live a healthier life and share it with our friends and family.

Wishing you a Health-Filled New Year! Enjoy! And Live Vibrant!

Monday, December 26, 2016

Healthy Lifestyle Tip--Invest in Your Health



#InvestInYourHealth
#HealthyLiving
#HealthyEating
#ChooseHealth
#Nutrition
#HealthyLifestyleTip
#WhyLivligaWorks   
#Livliga  
#LiveVibrant

Friday, December 23, 2016

Baking as Part of a Healthy Lifestyle


The smell of baking in your kitchen that wafts throughout your home makes people feel dreamy, brings a content smile to their faces and evokes happy memories. I love baking for my family and friends. The act of baking satisfies my need to nurture them. This is especially true over the holidays when we gather as family and with friends.

In the past what I baked for my family was not so healthy. It was filled with butter, sugar and more salt than humans should consume in a week or more. Increasingly, I have come to realize that my love of baking and my need to nurture was made even better by being mindful of the ingredients I use. To care about what I am baking is part of what makes up the nurturing I need to offer. Providing healthy baked goods is actually more in line with my need to nurture and nourish the ones I love than what I was producing previously.


Introducing new treats that have ingredients that promote health is a true act of love and nurturing. I have had so much fun experimenting with savory herbs in muffins, cookies and cakes. Adding more puréed fruits and alternative natural sweeteners to reduce the amount of refined sugar I use has allowed me to discover better ways of creating baked goods.

I think we have a false belief that healthier means less tasty and unattractive foods. This may have been the case at the beginning of the Whole Foods and organic movements but is hardly the case today. There are pastry chefs like Vanessa Musi who have opened our eyes to what is possible...and beautiful to our eye and palette. No more do we need to hang on to the old notion that healthy means crunchy granola.

Today when so many we know, including ourselves,  are struggling with weight and health issues we need to embrace doing things differently, including what we bake for the holidays. We give up nothing in doing this. Instead we add the gift of health to the love of nurturing. It is true, our baked goods can become a part of a healthy lifestyle.

As we gather for Hanukkah and Christmas as well as look to the New Year here are some delectable and healthy cookie recipes to enjoy and share:

Rosemary Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies

Thyme-infused Cardamom-Orange Oatmeal Cookies

Double-Ginger Ginger Snaps

Rosemary Dark Chocolate Chip Cookie
Enjoy! And Live Vibrant!




 
Healthy Lifestyle Tip: Looking for an easy way to measure in the kitchen and serve up right-sized portions at the table? Check out the award winning LivSpoons and make them part of your daily living.

Monday, December 19, 2016

Healthy Lifestyle Tip-- Create New Healthy Eating Traditions




#HolidayIdea
#HolidayCooking
#HolidayBaking
#HolidayGifting
#HealthyEating
#ChooseHealth
#Nutrition
#HealthyLifestyleTip
#WhyLivligaWorks   
#Livliga  
#LiveVibrant

Friday, December 9, 2016

Giving the Gift of Health and the Challenge of Giving Health-minded Gifts

We are all on our journey to healthier living. Many of us are challenged with health concerns that require we pay more attention to what we eat and how we live. More of us are faced with weight management and all the health issues that come with being overweight or obese. A growing part of the population, me included, are aging and are seeking ways to maximize our quality of life by embracing a healthy lifestyle.




I have come to truly believe that the greatest gift we can give ourselves and the ones we love is the gift of health. If this is true and we all agree, then why is it so taboo for us to give gifts that support this greatest gift, the gift of health?

As someone who believes we need the tools and environment to support us in the healthy lifestyle we seek-- and went so far as to create a company, Livliga, dedicated toward this end-- I see the need for the conversation to change.  Instead of focusing on the visible symptoms like someone being overweight, why don’t we focus on the solution of healthy living?


 Livliga@ LivSpoons and the Aveq serving bowl
Of course, it is easier when someone asks for those healthy lifestyle tools. I have done a lot of that with my own family. I have asked for a new bike, better work out clothes, a kayak, a Fitbit and lots of cookbooks. By opening the door to acquiring, using and enjoying these healthy lifestyle products it has also encouraged my family and friends to give me cool new gifts I haven’t asked for and didn’t even know about. A great example of this was the online health coach and app “Vida” that my sons gave me for my birthday. Perhaps the greatest gift towards healthy living each of my family members has given me is the gift of support and participation. My husband works out with me every morning at the YMCA, my daughter has done the same and also loves going on walks with me, and my sons go cycling and hiking with me whenever they are home. And when it comes to my clean cooking they are all on board. They happily try out my new healthier recipes and are enthusiastic about the healthy lifestyle products I have created and use everyday in our own lives and at every meal.

So what do we do when we recognize someone could benefit from having healthy lifestyle tools in their life because of health issues or weight issues? Maybe it is about our living a healthy lifestyle and wanting to share it. As someone who has been overweight and on diets on and off for most of my life, I can tell you there is nothing more irritating than having someone tell you what you need or tell you what you need to do without them practicing what they are preaching to you.

It is all about being on the journey together. It is about discovery and having fun with it. It is so much more enjoyable and doable when we share in the journey. Nothing gives me more pleasure than giving a friend a healthy lifestyle cookbook I have tried, liked and use regularly. My new favorite is the America’s Test Kitchen Complete Vegetarian cookbook. Fabulous. I am also delighted to share Livliga product like our LivSpoons that are serving spoons and measuring spoons all in one. In fact, we were using them for Thanksgiving when a friend who was with us brought up how much he loves his LivSpoons and uses then all the time. His favorite is how well they work for him when he makes his weekend waffles; they are perfect for measuring the waffle batter and for serving up the maple syrup, he said. Can’t beat how sharing in a healthy lifestyle with the ones you love makes it a healthier and happier world for all of us to enjoy.




It is possible to change the conversation. Focusing on what is “wrong” with us or others will achieve nothing and may in fact make everyone feel worse. The better, more effective approach is to focus on a way of being that we can all share. The more you do it and the more you share it the more it becomes a natural part of who you are and what you do. A great example of this for me was when I recently traveled back to my hometown, Kansas City. A long time friend of mine I had not seen in a while asked if we could meet up. Instead of asking for a lunch date she asked if we could take a walk in a park. It makes me smile just to think about how wonderful it was to have a friend suggest a fun walk. We had a great time, talked up a storm and managed to walk around the park several times just so we could keep going with the conversation! What a wonderful way of being.

So this holiday season think about how you can give yourself the gift of health and then how you can share it with the ones you love.

Enjoy! And Have a Happy and Healthy Holiday!

Monday, December 5, 2016

Healthy Lifestyle Tip-- Give Half Your Baked Cookies Away



#HolidayIdea
#HolidayCooking
#HolidayBaking
#HolidayGifting
#HealthyEating
#ChooseHealth
#Nutrition
#HealthyLifestyleTip
#WhyLivligaWorks   
#Livliga  
#LiveVibrant

Friday, December 2, 2016

Holiday mindfulness- how to stay in control




Truth be told we wake up everyday wanting to be in control and stay in control of what we eat. Every year we make a pact with ourselves during the holidays that we just aren’t going to eat too much and gain those unwanted pounds. Yet we don’t want to give up all the goodies—those one-time-a-year delectables we look forward to munching on during December. How can we have our cake and cookies and still stay in control? The answer: Holiday mindfulness.

The challenge we have with holidays is they are infused with tradition and ritual. This means we have set up a pattern to repeat the same activities over and over again. It doesn’t require that we be mindful. This lack of mindfulness is what gets us in trouble. We aren’t thinking about what we are doing so bad habits perpetuate.

We can only change out the bad habits with new healthier habits if we are aware of what we are doing. It is key that we are present as we navigate the holidays. We can’t make the better choice if we aren’t aware we have one because we merely repeat what we have always done—that extra glass of wine at the office party, the two extra sweets at our friend’s holiday party or the extra batch of holiday cookies we bake to make sure we have “enough” on hand. Doing what we have always done sets us up for “the same ol’ same ol’”.

If we really want to change and not gain the weight we don’t want to then we have to stop doing the same things over and over again just because we did them before. Being more mindful will allow us to stay more in control.

Here is a link to a blog I have written previously that gives 10 ways to fight the battle of the bulge over the holidays. There are simple tips like eating a healthy snack before going to a party so you don’t arrive famished, or drinking a tall glass of water between alcoholic drinks to help pace your consumption. Print these tips out and tape them up where you will see them, look at them and remind yourself of the ways you can be mindful each day during the holidays. Hopefully my list will get you started on making your own list that will work for you.


Another step is to actually help yourself become more mindfully through adopting certain practices like starting the day by deep breathing before you get out of bed, stretching before you get dressed or taking up a yoga class at your local gym or YMCA. Here is another blog to check out for more ideas on how to give temptation the slip during the holidays.

If you have kids and are looking for ways to help them avoid overindulging during the holidays too then click on my blog Top 10 tips to help kids avoid Holiday overeating .  Children are out of their routine during the holidays and without scheduled fun activities can get sedentary and bored. There are ways to avoid this by planning ahead and also including them in special activities of this joyful season.

Being mindful is relevant to everyone, no matter your age.  It is always the right time to set you and your loved ones up for a happy and healthy holiday season.

Enjoy! And Live Vibrant!

Monday, November 28, 2016

Healthy Lifetyle Tip-- Feel Full With Food Scented Candles



#ScentedCandles
#HealthyLiving
#ChooseHealth
#Nutrition
#NationalDiabetesMonth
#HealthyLifestyleTip
#WhyLivligaWorks   
#Livliga  
#LiveVibrant

Monday, November 21, 2016

Healthy Lifestyle Tip-- Set the Mood for a Meal




#SetTheMoodForAMeal
#HealthyEating
#ChooseHealth
#Nutrition
#NationalDiabetesMonth
#HealthyLifestyleTip
#WhyLivligaWorks   
#Livliga  
#LiveVibrant

Friday, November 18, 2016

Switching Up our Thanksgiving Traditions for our Health and Happiness

Thanksgiving is a day that embodies many things for us. It is a time we look forward to as we gather with family and friends, many of whom we may only see at holidays. It is also a time seeped in all variety of traditions from the decorations we use, the table we set and the foods we prepare.


Over time we can see these traditions as a source of comfort and goodwill or we can see them as a burden and the bane of our existence. The last thing we want on a holiday is to be held captive by our traditions. We should only keep the ones we like and pitch the ones we don't. Old habits, especially bad habits, are hard to break. So how do we break out of the traditions we no longer want as part of our lives because we want better times? Switch it up. This is particularly true when it comes to the foods we eat and the amount we eat.

There is no reason we can't have our favorite foods. If they are made from recipes that have a lot of fat, sugar or salt it is possible to change up the recipe to find an updated version that is tasty yet healthier. I have a friend I recently enjoyed a dinner with who mentioned to me how years ago I had recommended Cooking Light to her and how she loves the magazine and almost exclusively cooks from it. Cooking Light is a great example of a resource where the recipes are all delicious, made with real ingredients, and are well conceived for a healthier lifestyle. There are many other great online resources for healthy recipes when you are looking to update a family favorite or be inspired by something new. Switch it up this Thanksgiving by trying out an updated version of a family favorite recipe.


The other tradition we have which is truly unhealthy and ultimately something we find unenjoyable  is how we gorge ourselves at Thanksgiving. I can hear the groans from stuffed family members now! Why have we made this a ubiquitous American tradition, especially when it makes us miserable? It is definitely time to switch up this bloating and burdensome holiday tradition. How? One way is to set up a buffet in another room from where you are eating so people have to get up to go get more food. That way it won't be sitting on the table for people to keep serving up spoonfuls of the food in front of them. Another great trick is to pre-portion your foods. It can be as easy as fixing just enough food for everyone attending or pre-cutting portions of food and arranging it on platters as discrete servings. Another great way we have found to help keep portions to a just-right size is to use LivSpoons, serving spoons with measurement. They are actually designed to hook on a side of a bowl so you can place the size you want on the bowl of food you are serving up. They are super easy to use, attractive, and a new way to switch up how you serve up.


Eight years ago our family decided to switch up our Thanksgiving traditions. We chose new updated recipes of our family favorites to make our meal healthier without giving up the foods we love. Our meals are no longer so complicated or burdensome. There are so many less calories too!

We also started a new tradition of taking a family walk before we sit down to our meal. I still love working hard to make our special dinner, and now I also relish our beautiful, long walks in the morning as a family enjoying our time of being together. On this day of thanksgiving there is nothing better than reveling in the beauty of the day, being with family and working up an appetite on our walk.

As I firmly believe and see more and more people embrace: The greatest gift we can give ourselves and the ones we love is the gift of health.

May you have a Happy and Health-filled Thanksgiving!


Monday, November 14, 2016

Healthy Lifestyle Tip-- Breathe Deeply








#HealthyLiving
#ChooseHealth
#HolidayMentalPrepping
#NationalDiabetesMonth
#HealthyLifestyleTip
#WhyLivligaWorks   
#Livliga  
#LiveVibrant

Friday, November 11, 2016

Roasted Root Salads

When you think of root vegetables they make us think of Autumn, don't they? We think of them in our favorite pot roast, stew or soup. The idea of making them into a salad, however, is a new and different idea. That's because we think of roots as hardy, somewhat gnarly and sometimes even bitter. With this idea of exploring the more delicate side of roots I set about testing and creating a new way of enjoying roots--in salads.

There are in reality many different roots we can use from carrots, onions and parsnips to rutabaga, turnip and celeriac to sweet potatoes, russet potatoes, beets and, of course, ginger and garlic. It is fun to imagine all the ways we can prepare and combine these various roots. In the fall we are ready for a change in foods and it seems our palette is searching for a seasonal change to hardier richer flavors. Root vegetables are the perfect way to meet our need for healthy hardier meals without having to be heavy or hefty.

Let's talk about how you prepare Root Vegetables- to peel or not to peel. It depends on the skin. Most of the time if your vegetables are fresh there is not need to peel them, just wash them. There are a few exceptions like the gnarly celeriac root with its thick skin. I always peel it. Ginger is another root where peeling is recommended. And on occasion, with older vegetables there may be parts of a root vegetable that will need peeling or cutting out. The great thing is you can make it easier on yourself by not peeling the skins and cut down on your prep time when making a meal.



The other "trick" for prepping root vegetables for salads is to chop them finely. They are much sweeter in small nuggets. The key is to have a sharp knife to make the chopping easier.

Besides the fact that there is variety and abundance of root vegetables in the fall, are there other reasons we should want to eat them? You bet. They are incredibly good for us. Here are some reasons they are so healthy for us to eat:

  • They grow in the ground and absorb the nutrients and minerals in the earth.
  • As the base of a plant they hold all the nourishment to feed and grow it.
  • They are packed with a high concentration of antioxidants, Vitamins C, B, A, and iron, helping to cleanse your system.
  • They are also filled with slow-burning carbohydrates and fiber, which make you feel full, and help regulate your blood sugar and digestive system.
  • Roots are excellent for people who are trying to lose weight, or simply stay healthy because they are filling and slow burning so you stay full longer.
  • Adding up all of the nutrient qualities, root vegetables are disease-fighting, immunity and energy-boosting, and are also extremely versatile in cooking. 

Another important part of making sure you enjoy the deliciousness of root vegetables it to make sure you choose the freshest available. To choose the best root vegetables make sure they feel firm and do not have big brown blemishes. If you do end up with one that has a blemish you can always cut it out if the rest of the vegetable is still firm.

How you store your root vegetables is also important for maximizing the best result. Storing them in your refrigerator is not ideal. If you plan to use your roots in a day or two they will be fine but they do soften quickly. The best place to store them is in a cool dry place. I use a basket on the floor in my pantry. They can stay there for a number of days.

During my experimenting I came up with three different root salads. You can find these recipes and their vinaigrettes on the Livliga website in our recipe section. I have also included my simple Root Salad with Fried Egg with this blog to get you inspired to explore all three recipes.



Healthy Lifestyle Tip: Looking for a way to make cooking, measuring and serving easier? Try out the award-winning LivSpoons!

Enjoy! And Live Vibrant!

Monday, November 7, 2016

Healthy Lifestyle Tip-- Sit Down When You Eat




#HealthyEating
#ChooseHealth
#Nutrition
#NationalDiabetesMonth
#HealthyLifestyleTip
#WhyLivligaWorks   
#Livliga  
#LiveVibrant

Friday, November 4, 2016

Guest Blog: Living With Diabetes--How to Manage Choice

As part of our partnership with DiabetesSisters during National Diabetes Month, Livliga is posting this guest blog from a member of the DiabetesSisters' community. As you can see from this blog, portion control is a key aspect of managing and living with diabetes. Livliga is all about portion control. That is why we want to share this important story.




Thanksgiving is THE time of year for over-eating. I don’t know about you, but I usually eat myself sick! It’s the darn mashed potatoes and gravy! You see, I tend to rationalize my turkey-day binging by pointing out, “oh…well, it is only once a year, right?” Family is gathered in one place for the first time this year, and they are all splurging. Going overboard is okay, then. Right?! I’m just following suit?

In the aftermath of the family gorge, after everyone takes a nap (tryptophan is what we blame the sleepiness on, but it actually is just over-eating), they wake up feeling warm and just the right amount of full. However, I don’t. Over-eating for me, a person with diabetes, requires a longer recovery period. I can’t just power-nap it off. My blood glucose levels become much more variable, and consequently, so does my mood. That’s right, I get cranky and antisocial after every Thanksgiving meal because the experience I have with my body fluctuates with the roller-coaster that my blood glucose levels become.

Every Thanksgiving I fall into the same trap. Here is the good news, though, I know about the trap now. I am aware. I’ve been through enough of them to see this pattern and decide to do something about it. I will not make an impossible goal of not partaking in the festive eating at all, but instead will make a goal to focus on my portions and keep them small.

Adam Brown enlightened the Diabetes Online Community with his n=1 study. In the article published by DiaTribe, he unraveled the results of an experiment he conducted on himself (he is a person with diabetes). One thing he found is that any meal containing over 30 grams of carbohydrate introduced greater variability in his blood glucose levels. He cautioned readers to consult their health care provider before making any changes to their diet regimen (of course), but offered a moment of reflection. That moment of reflection lead me to question my own carbohydrate threshold. What amount of carbohydrate introduces that variability for me and my diabetes? Just a little food for thought during this Thanksgiving holiday.




So, this Thanksgiving, I’ll taste everything (even the mashed potatoes and gravy), but not got overboard! Small portions means I can try everything I want to try, without feeling sick later. This year, I am making a promise to myself to not over-eat and thus be happy and social during the one time of year we all gather in one place.



Healthy Lifestyle Idea
–––
Right-size your eating environment with Livliga Lifestyle Products designed to help you embrace healthy eating in a way that celebrates beauty, food and sharing.



About the Guest Blogger
–––
Heather Gabel is a PhD student researcher studying peer-support in the context of diabetes at University of Illinois at Chicago. Gabel has a background working in the non-profit sector with organizations like DiabetesSisters and Diabetes Hands Foundation. In her blog www.TheChronicScholar.com, Gabel writes about the intersection of patient experience and academia.  

About DiabetesSisters

––
DiabetesSisters is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization whose mission is to improve the health and quality of women with diabetes, and to advocate on their behalf. Founded in 2008, the organization offers a safe environment for women living with diabetes through online (www.diabetessisters.org) and in-person programs such as forums, blogs, webinars, National Conferences, Leadership Institutes, and monthly peer support group meetings throughout the United States.



Monday, October 31, 2016

Healthy Lifestyle Tip--Avoid Buying Snacks in Bulk




#AvoidPrepackagedSnacks
#NoSnacksInBulk
#HealthyEating
#ChooseHealth
#Nutrition
#breastcancerawareness
#HealthyLifestyleTip
#WhyLivligaWorks   
#Livliga  
#LiveVibrant

Friday, October 28, 2016

Beat Cancer by Eating Healthy and Living a Healthy Lifestyle


Most of us are aware of how important it is to eat well and live a healthy lifestyle. We know it makes us feel better, have extra energy and enjoy life more. Commonly known is our need to manage our weight in order to lower our risk for heart disease and diabetes. What is less known is the impact our diet has on our risk for cancer, particularly those cancers that are categorized as obesity-related cancers. Woman who are obese, for example, have a higher risk of developing breast cancer, particularly post-menopause. Not only does a healthy diet help prevent breast cancer, it can also improve our survival rate once diagnosed.

Additionally, recent studies indicate that a healthy diet and weight management not only prevent incidence of breast cancer, improve our survival rate once diagnosed, but will also lower the risk of its recurrence. It is amazing to think how much power what we eat and how much we eat can have on our health. Looked at another way, we have the ability to make what we eat a positive tool for our health.



So the question is, beyond eating a balanced diet in right-sized portions, are there foods that are specifically beneficial for those who want to lower their risk of breast cancer? There are. Research shows that eating a plant-based diet and limiting alcohol consumption does reduce the risk of developing breast cancer. There are specific foods that have been shown to have a positive effect, too.

Eating foods rich in carotenoids is an example of a specific category of foods that has been shown to reduce risk of breast cancer recurrence. Carotenoids are the natural pigments found in yellow and orange foods (such as carrots, sweet potatoes and squash) and dark leafy greens such as kale, spinach and Swiss chard.

Many of us are aware that eating fish high in omega-3 fatty acids has been linked to improving heart health yet how many of us are also aware it can improve breast cancer prognosis? Salmon, haddock, cod, halibut and sardines are the best sources for omega-3.

A high-fiber diet is associated with lower overall mortality in breast cancer patients. Beans and whole grains are an ideal source of fiber. You can’t beat a bowl of oatmeal at breakfast for a great source of fiber and to help you feel full through out your morning which helps us with weight management.

Omega-3 fatty acids, high-fiber diets and carotenoids can all help prevent breast cancer.
The more we learn about disease the more it has become apparent that it is primarily linked to what we eat and our overall lifestyle. The good news is we have the power to do something about it. It is possible to eat healthier and live a healthier life. Every time we make one change, like adopting a meatless Monday meal or eating whole grain cereal for breakfast we are significantly reducing our risk for disease. And, as I have found, I really love the foods and variety I have tried because of wanting to be as healthy as I can be. Have to’s can definitely become want to’s…we just have to give ourselves a chance to make that discovery.

And remember, the greatest gift we can give ourselves is the gift of health!



More about LivSpoons.

Searching for healthy recipes? Check out the recipes on this Livliga Live Vibrant blog.







Monday, October 24, 2016

Healthy Lifestyle Tip--Pick a Healthier Version




#HealthyCooking
#HealthierVersion
#HealthyEating
#ChooseHealth
#Nutrition
#breastcancerawareness
#HealthyLifestyleTip
#WhyLivligaWorks   
#Livliga  
#LiveVibrant

Friday, October 21, 2016

Guest Blog: Autumn Sauteed Apples


Fall means Apples. While I have always had a hard time with raw apples (they give me a belly-ache), I love cooked ones. Here's my easy-peasy recipe for Sauteed Apples. The recipe also works with pears and bananas.

I use one half apple per person and a few tablespoons of butter - enough to keep the apples from sticking.

For a dessert, I garnish with a dollop of whipped cream flavored with rum (either real rum or rum extract). Naturally, I serve on a Livliga® side plate! However, this can also be used as a side dish for roast pork, turkey or ham. You can sprinkle in some raw cranberries for lovely color and a zing.
  1. Peel and cut the apples.
  2. Heat your skillet on high.
  3. Add the butter and then the apples.
  4. Stir/flip the apples around, and let them get a little bit brown/crisp.
  5. Stir/flip again and turn the heat down to medium low.
  6. Sprinkle with cinnamon (or not) and other spices, one at any time.
  7. Keep stirring/flipping every 5 minutes or so until the apples are semi-soft.
  8. Plate and garnish with whipped cream.​​​​​​​
I enjoy serving my guests using the Livliga line of products with the built-in portion control. I love that they are designed to support my program of right-sized eating and drinking. Take a peek at what they offer at: livligahome.com.




Our Guest Blogger this month is Liz Bull. She is an avid Livliga Affiliate. Here is information about her background and professional credentials as well as information about how to connect with her.

Liz Bull helps women (and brave men!) who are fed up with weight loss programs that dont work to finally get a body and a life they love. A Medical Intuitive, Master Theta Healer, and Certified Virtual Gastric Band Practitioner, Liz  has long been fascinated by the important role mind, body, and beliefs play in our lives. Her other studies and certifications include EFT, Psych-K, Matrix Energetics, Access Consciousness, QiGong, NLP and Transcendental Meditation.

www.lizbull.com









Monday, October 17, 2016

Healthy Lifestyle Tip--Sharing is Believing




#SharingIsBelieving
#SustainingHealth
#breastcancerawareness
#ChooseHealth
#Nutrition
#HealthyLifestyleTip
#WhyLivligaWorks   
#Livliga  
#LiveVibrant

Friday, October 14, 2016

Book Review: Back in the Swing Cookbook

Most all of us can look back on our lives and see times when dramatic events have occurred that have felt like a punch to the stomach or have “knocked our socks off." During those times we endure, take each day one at a time and long for what is “normal” and when we can feel “back in the swing” of our lives. This is particularly true for those who face major illness, like breast cancer.




Two wonderful women, Barbara C. Unell and Judith Fertig, who understand personally the longing and challenge of getting “back in the swing” of things, put together a cookbook to help breast cancer survivors with the process of embracing life after treatment in order to find their new “normal." Their cookbook is The Back in the Swing Cookbook: Recipes for Eating and Living Well Every Day After Breast Cancer.

I had the pleasure of working with these women when we launched our healthy lifestyle tableware company, Livliga®, in Kansas City three years ago. One of the weekend-long events we had as part of the launch was a luncheon. The food was served on Livliga® dinnerware and the recipes came from the Back in the Swing Cookbook. Judith Fertig is the chef who designed the recipes to be healthy and with ingredients particularly supportive of the health of breast cancer survivors. The food served at the lunch from this cookbook was delicious and perhaps as important, visually appealing. I experienced first hand the benefits of this thoughtful cookbook. 



Livliga® dinnerware can make a recipe shine, by adding some extra visual appeal to healthy meals.
The cookbook is packed full of goodness. And it is not all about recipes. It is about how to live and embrace a healthy life, including the foods to eat, insights from survivors, health news, and ways we can help ourselves live a healthier and happier life. For instance, throughout the book there are sections called “Treat of the Day”. Each of these sections highlights a specific way you can help yourself feel better and be happier and the scientific reason behind it.  One section gives you “Scientific Reasons to Watch a Funny Movie” and then shares some of the American Film Institutes top 100 funniest American films.  A few from the list are Tootsie, Singin’ in the Rain, A Fish Called Wanda and When Harry Met Sally.


The core of the cookbook is its recipes. The recipes highlight ingredients that are proven to be good for our health, healing, our immune system and for preventing disease and the re-occurrence of disease. Although the focus is clearly for the breast cancer survivor the approach and recipes are relevant and good for us all.


There is a real flare to this cookbook. It entices us with internationally based recipes imbued with herbs and spices that wake up our senses (Asian Chicken Salad with Fresh Ginger Vinaigrette). Back in the Swing also takes classics and adds an upgrade of healthier ingredients that satisfy our taste buds while warming our hearts (Celebration Chocolate Cake includes a filling with pumpkin, cinnamon and nutmeg).


In this era when we are busy and find it hard to spend time in the kitchen, this cookbook makes it easy to cook. The recipes are made up of accessible ingredients and are simple to assemble. The best part is how the recipes taste and look.  If you want to embrace a healthier lifestyle this cookbook is a great place to start.


My personally adage is: The greatest gift we can give ourselves and the ones we love is the gift of health. The Back in the Swing Cookbook is a perfect way to give this gift.








#breastcancerawareness

#womenshealth

#healthyeating

#backintheswing 




Monday, October 10, 2016

Healthy Lifestyle Tip--Honesty is the Best policy



#HonestyAboutFood
#TruthAboutWhatYouEat
#breastcancerawareness
#ChooseHealth
#Nutrition
#HealthyLifestyleTip
#WhyLivligaWorks   
#Livliga  
#LiveVibrant

Friday, October 7, 2016

Finding Inspiration and Sharing it


October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. There is not a person among us who has not been personally affected by breast cancer or knows someone close to them who has battled this all too prevalent disease. Many of us know a number of women who have faced this disease. Some lost their lives. Thinking about National Breast Cancer Awareness Month brings back a whole host of memories.

The first person I ever knew to have breast cancer was my best friend’s mother. That was some 55 years ago. It was hush-hush. No one was supposed to know. She faced a mastectomy, chemotherapy and recovery in silence and alone. She survived and is still alive today.  Her life is an inspiring story, but only to the few of us who know about it.

Thank goodness the world has become much more open about acknowledging and sharing the reality of breast cancer. We can talk about it now and name it. We follow the very public stories of famous people like Angelina Jolie and Amy Robach who have faced the disease and shared their journeys. We can openly give our love and support to those who are diagnosed and on the journey of life with breast cancer and celebrate the good news offered by survivors.   

What is evident to me is how we all cherish the life lessons we are given from the ones we know who have been diagnosed and live with cancer. We learn how precious life is and how it is to be celebrated. We understand that we all thrive on inspiration whether it be from observing the lives of the ones with cancer, from the stories they share, the poetry they write or is written as a result of their inspiration.

There is such an amazing sisterhood surrounding the community of breast cancer survivors thanks in big part to organizations like Susan G. Komen focused on saving lives and finding the cure for breast cancer.

It doesn’t mean it is easy or that you don’t feel alone when you first find out you have the disease. What is important is to know there are a whole host of resources, a community of support and so many people who get it and are willing to help others on the journey.

Some days, though, we don’t want to be the inspiring story or to be the big support for others. We’re the ones who need to be inspired and gain renewed energy from it. We need to find the inspiration and then share it.

As someone who lost a mom to cancer I personally know the need for renewing the spirit and finding inspiration. Words can have such a profound affect on us. Seeing words of comfort, motivation and aspiration can truly help us to feel good and keep going. I so believe in this I did a crazy thing and created a whole line of dishware to help people feel better, eat well and savor every moment of life. It is called Celebrate: The Poetry of Life.

In honor of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month and all of us who share in the reality of this disease let me share a cup of tea and a little Celebrate inspiration.



Finding Inspiration and Sharing it


October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. There is not a person among us who has not been personally affected by breast cancer or knows someone close to them who has battled this all too prevalent disease. Many of us know a number of women who have faced this disease. Some lost their lives. Thinking about National Breast Cancer Awareness Month brings back a whole host of memories.

The first person I ever knew to have breast cancer was my best friend’s mother. That was some 55 years ago. It was hush-hush. No one was supposed to know. She faced a mastectomy, chemotherapy and recovery in silence and alone. She survived and is still alive today.  Her life is an inspiring story, but only to the few of us who know about it.

Thank goodness the world has become much more open about acknowledging and sharing the reality of breast cancer. We can talk about it now and name it. We follow the very public stories of famous people like Angelina Jolie and Amy Robach who have faced the disease and shared their journeys. We can openly give our love and support to those who are diagnosed and on the journey of life with breast cancer and celebrate the good news offered by survivors.   

What is evident to me is how we all cherish the life lessons we are given from the ones we know who have been diagnosed and live with cancer. We learn how precious life is and how it is to be celebrated. We understand that we all thrive on inspiration whether it be from observing the lives of the ones with cancer, from the stories they share, the poetry they write or is written as a result of their inspiration.

There is such an amazing sisterhood surrounding the community of breast cancer survivors thanks in big part to organizations like Susan G. Komen focused on saving lives and finding the cure for breast cancer.

It doesn’t mean it is easy or that you don’t feel alone when you first find out you have the disease. What is important is to know there are a whole host of resources, a community of support and so many people who get it and are willing to help others on the journey.

Some days, though, we don’t want to be the inspiring story or to be the big support for others. We’re the ones who need to be inspired and gain renewed energy from it. We need to find the inspiration and then share it.

As someone who lost a mom to cancer I personally know the need for renewing the spirit and finding inspiration. Words can have such a profound affect on us. Seeing words of comfort, motivation and aspiration can truly help us to feel good and keep going. I so believe in this I did a crazy thing and created a whole line of dishware to help people feel better, eat well and savor every moment of life. It is called Celebrate: The Poetry of Life.

In honor of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month and all of us who share in the reality of this disease let me share a cup of tea and a little Celebrate inspiration.