Great Healthy Living Quote #101-- Be a Pioneer of the Future

Monday, June 30, 2014
Great Healthy Living Quote #101

Every time I hear the word "pioneer" I think of Sally Ride, a physicist who became the first woman astronaut. Who inspires you to become a "pioneer of the future"?


Sugar is on the outs according to WHO

Friday, June 27, 2014
Sugar is on the outs according to WHO (photo by LivligaHome)

Here is More Evidence that We are Consuming too Much Sugar--


Americans are killing themselves by consuming far too much sugar, and should cut their consumption of the sweet stuff by two thirds, says the World Health Organization. In a revised guideline, WHO is now recommending that sugar make up no more than 5 percent of a person’s daily total calorie consumption. The average American currently consumes 18 percent of his calories in sugar. WHO suggests that people eat no more than 25 grams of sugar, or six teaspoons, in a 2,000-calorie-a-day diet—less than what’s found in a single can of soda. The new recommendation is based on widespread evidence linking free, or added, sugars to heightened risk of obesity, heart disease, diabetes, and even cancer. WHO had previously recommended restricting calories from sugar to 10 percent, which is still far less than most Americans take in every day. “The key point is that we are consuming way too much added sugars for good health,” American Heart Association spokeswoman Rachel Johnson tells USA Today. Free sugars include those that are added to foods, such as table and brown sugar, honey and maple syrup, as well as processed sweeteners like high fructose corn syrup.

Sourced from The Week, March 28, 2014

Snacks a Key Part of Our Daily Diet

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Snacks a Key Part of Our Daily Diet (photo by LivligaHome)

There are many experts who talk about eating 5 to 6 times per day. I always thought that was a ridiculous concept. Who in the world should be eating 6 meals a day? That sounded like a whole lot of extra calories to me. Then I started reading more about diets, trying them out and learning from them. What I learned is you eat more frequently but not more food. If anything you end up eating less because you never get ravenous and you stay in control of your hunger and emotions. Your breakfast-lunch-and-dinner meals are right-sized portions of a balanced meal. The other 3 times you eat are healthy, filling snacks. Click here to read the entire article...

Re-posted from Sheila's Blog on


Great Healthy Living Quote #100-- Happiness is a choice

Monday, June 23, 2014
Great Healthy Living Quote #100

What steps can you take to support your choice to be happy?


Food Trends 2014--How Food Labeling Fits In

Friday, June 20, 2014
 How will our food choices be influenced in 2014?
Top Ten Countries Supporting Better Health Labeling on Food Items (Infographic by Carlos Monteiro)

An interesting article was recently posted by Melissa Hoffman on What you will be eating this year: The 2014 Food Trends in ADWEEK. How people think about food influences restaurants and food companies in how they label food and what they will offer. Health benefits have been found to be a big purchaser driver. According to the infographic from the article and offered above, those in the U.S. think enhanced food labeling would be beneficial but its importance is lower than the Top Ten listed. It is good to see a strong trend across the world where people are caring about knowing what we are putting in our bodies. It seems strange that the U.S. is not among the top countries with this increased awareness. Do we continue to be in denial?

Changing Habits-- Chewing

Wednesday, June 18, 2014
Changing Habits-- Chewing More (photo by LivligaHome)
As I have mentioned in previous blogs, my husband and I have been following the Colorado Diet from the State of Slim book. This book and diet has inspired us in so many ways. For the first time in my life I look at change as something fun to do. It may be because each change is small and builds on the previous change. Click here to read the entire article...

Re-posted from Sheila's Blog on


Great Healthy Living Quote #99-- Inhale and Laugh

Monday, June 16, 2014

Inhale and Laugh


Valuing Ourselves is Key to Our Health

Friday, June 13, 2014

We spend a lot of time finding excuses for not taking care for ourselves. We think others are more important or that we just aren’t worth it. Believe it or not this has a bad effect on our health both physically and mentally. Valuing ourselves is key to our health.

Like many, I have spent years avoiding the truth about myself. When I felt alone, I ate. When my parents were displeased with me, I ate. When a supposed friend was cruel to me, I ate. Later on when there were conflicts at work or demands I was worried I couldn’t meet, I ate. I ate to swallow down my anger, my fear, my frustration and my sense of inadequacy. I believed what others hurled my way. I lived the life of a victim. So many of us exist as a victim of our lives and circumstances. We don’t have the courage to face the truth about our value. Truth be told, we are way more valuable than any other person on earth.

If we don’t take care of ourselves both in body and mind how can we honestly do a good job of taking care of others? If we are in poor health because we do not find the time to exercise regularly how can we find the stamina and energy to achieve our goals and dreams? And if we eat the wrong foods and too much of them the reality is we will just keep gaining weight, feeling lousy, sleeping poorly, and generally hating the life we are living. This is a great way to limit our possibility and our longevity.

I have spent a lot of time “hitting my head against the wall” by repeating the same self-destructive actions over and over again. Then I realized I wasn’t hurting anyone else but myself, I wasn’t magically going to wake up skinny, rich and adored and I sure wasn’t improving my health by eating boxes of cookies, bags of chips and gallons of ice cream all by myself. I have faced the truth that my life is more important to me than a bag of bagels; that my dreams are way more important than drinking a six pack of beer; and that my health is so much more important than a dozen donuts. It has all come down to admitting that the most important person to me is myself. Without a healthy me I could have no fun, no plans and no future. Nothing could change unless I changed myself.

Valuing ourselves is reflected in our actions. Making a pronouncement may legitimize our intent but it has zero effect on the outcome. Changing habits and daily routines is key to manifesting how important we are to ourselves. Chris Powell of Extreme Makeover fame expresses it as making promises to ourselves. He coaches that we need to start with small promises to ourselves that are achievable and therefore promises we can keep. Keeping promises is a sure-fire way of proving how much we truly value ourselves.

What are some of the promises we can make? They should be as simple as going to bed earlier and by a certain time…or doing a certain number of sit ups each day…or cooking a certain numbers of meals at home each week…or taking a walk with a friend or your dog after work…or signing up for a class to learn something new…or going to the Farmers Market regularly in the summer to buy fresh vegetables…or designating a time each week to plan out your meals.

Ideally you start with one promise and keep it. Then you add on the next achievable promise, one at a time, one after the other until one day you have built the healthy life you want to be living, one promise at a time. This does not mean that it goes smoothly or there are not setbacks. There are times we will fail to keep our promises. When this happens, as Chris Powell also counsels, we need to forgive ourselves so we can let go of the disappointment, move on and start fresh. Forgiveness is significant in our ability to value ourselves. As the most important person in our lives, we are so worth being forgiven.

Valuing ourselves is key to our health. We will feel better, have more control over our lives, be able to go after the items on our bucket list and find joy in the life we have built-- one promise at a time. First we have to embrace that we are the most important person in our own lives.

Facing Our Sugar Addiction to Save Our Lives

Wednesday, June 11, 2014
Sugar has been found to be more addictive than cocaine or heroin (photo by LivligaHome).

There was a recent study done that shows sugar is actually more addictive than cocaine or heroin. By feeding rats Oreo cookies scientists studied the effect the cookies had on their brains. The pleasure center of the brain lit up like a Christmas tree. And the rats kept coming back for more. Sugar is addictive, no question about it.  How many times have any of us opened a bag of M & M’s or a box of cookies only to realize a few minutes later we have eaten the entire package? We couldn’t stop. Click here to read the entire article...

Re-posted from Sheila's Blog on


Great Healthy Living Quote #98-- Negativity..return to sender

Monday, June 9, 2014
Great Healthy Living Quote #98-- Negativity..return to sender
Let it go!


Perfect Backyard Barbecue

Friday, June 6, 2014

Livliga Backyard BBQ Place Setting with Halsa
Perfect Backyard Barbecue (photo by LivligaHome)
The great thing about revving up the grill in the summer is that you can do so much of your cooking outside and avoid a hot kitchen and air conditioning on over drive because of it. It is also a pleasant excuse to hang outside as the evening cools, the sun sets and the night critters start their songs. I have found the best conversations have happened at that time of day when everyone is relaxed, sipping a cool drink, and the pressures of the day have receded.

When our children were little and we lived in a house with a big backyard, my husband hung a wooden swing from an old oak tree we had there. Adults and children alike loved swinging on that swing. With a few helpful pushes you could swing high, up and over the fence. The rhythm of swinging as you arced back and forth was exhilarating and comforting all at the same time. So much better than spending the evening inside watching TV.

The grill is an easy focal point for the backyard. The glow and smells draw people to it. The main thing is to keep it simple most of the time so you can enjoy the time grilling instead of stressing over it. The easiest is to grill your whole meal outside. The key is timing. Sometimes everything can go on at once but often the meat needs to go on first and then you add the vegetables for the last few minutes.

One of our family's favorites is grilling marinated chicken legs. Since you can eat them with your fingers they are fun to eat outside and can be enjoyed by all ages. Another fun backyard barbecue side dish is asparagus vinaigrette. These too can be picked up and eaten with your fingers. They can also be made ahead of time and served cool on a hot night. Finally, I love grilling sweet peppers, in all colors, in a basket on the grill. You can add any other vegetable to them and they can be spiced up or cooled down depending on what you want to eat. They add great color to any meal.

Here are the recipes for the Perfect Backyard Barbecue:

Grilled Chicken Legs
These chicken legs were marinated first in a wet marinade, then grilled with occasional basting.

Marinate for at least 20 minutes (check out my marinade choices on previous blogs like Summer Grilling Marinade for Chicken with Lemon Pulp. Place the chicken legs on a hot grill, grilling 4 sides for at least 4 minutes each side, or until cooked. Serve 1 -2 chicken legs per person (kids will most likely want one).

Asparagus Vinaigrette
Clean and snap the ends off a bunch of asparagus. You can grill it ahead of time before the barbecue begins to keep all cooking outside and to add a smoky flavor to the asparagus. If you grill, spray them with olive oil cooking spray first, turn regularly and don't over cook them. Should take 5 to 10 minutes depending on how hot your grill is.

If you prefer, you can steam them inside on the stove top by bringing the water to a boil in a steamer. Steam the asparagus 5 - 6 minutes. Let it cool.

Add 2 tablespoons of the light lemony vinaigrette. This can be made ahead of time, even the day before, refrigerated and then served when needed.

Grilled Sweet Peppers
Buy enough peppers so there is enough for one per person. Get them in all colors-- red, yellow, orange and green (I skip the green because I don't like the "bite" it has) . Wash the peppers, slice them in half to remove the seeds. Then cut them in half again to make large cubes, easy for grilling.  Spray with olive oil cooking spray, sprinkle with garlic powder and herbe de Provence. Place in a grilling basket then grill until nicely charred and tender, about 5 to 10 minutes. 

Yummm...I can smell the food on the grill...and hear the happy voices of friends and family enjoying a perfect summertime backyard barbecue!

Enjoy! And Live Vibrant!

Download Your Free Copy of The Get Started Guide

Changing Routines and Rituals—Smoothies with a Movie

Wednesday, June 4, 2014
Changing Routines and Rituals - Smoothies with a Movie
We now enjoy a new habit, which has become a “look forward to” routine
 of “Smoothies and a Movie”. The smoothie is in a tall Livliga glass 
(photo by LivligaHome).


Many people have asked me how I came up with my popular new routine we call Smoothies with a Movie at our home. Here is the journey I took to change habits and embrace a new ritual.

Why is it we do things that are detrimental to our health? I have been fascinated by my inability to stop myself from eating food that is not good for me or from stopping eating before I finish that big bag of potato chips. What is it about us that we are losing the battle of the every increasing bulge?

The biggest challenge we all have in life is embracing change, particularly when it comes to our eating habits. Old habits do diehard. Creating new, healthier and more desirable habits is the key to our success. When we are tired or need to retreat to comfort those new habits need to be the ones we do automatically, not the old, detrimental habits. How do we do that? Deliberately and repeatedly. New habits need to become routine and ritualized. That is how we succeed in embracing change. Through constructing new habits, routines and traditions (rituals) that support our desired change we will succeed in living a healthier lifestyle.

Surveying the times and places I tend to go “AWOL” with food I decided to see how I might change my eating habits around those occasions.  The first one I wanted to work on was the way I eat when I watch movies. It is always the same; we buy a big bucket of popcorn, the super-sized drink and 2 boxes of candy. I shutter at the amount of calories we consume while watching one movie. It is at least 2500 calories. Half of that is 1200 calories, basically the calories for one day’s worth of food for me. And that is only if I eat half of what we buy. Truthfully, I probably eat more. At home I typically grab whatever bag of snacks is around to sit in front of the TV and eat anything from chips to cookies to a snack mix.

For years I have tried to eat less without success. It was too easy to go back to the larger sizes. I realized I needed to change up the whole habit. Since we watch more movies at home on the weekends, I decided to tackle creating a new habit at home.

The State of Slim Mile-High Protein Smoothie has become a true treat for me. It is so satisfying and it doesn’t trigger my need for more munchies. We now enjoy the new habit, which has become a “look forward to” routine of “Smoothies with a Movie”. Everyone likes the fun of it. You can now hear somebody asking “Hey, can we have Smoothies and a Movie tonight?” That is the sign we are headed towards a new great, healthy and repeatable tradition.

Here is our favorite Smoothie (with a Livliga flair) recipe for watching movies:

PB2 Chocolate Hazelnut Smoothie

1 cup chilled fat-free milk
1 scoop chocolate protein powder
2 tablespoons chocolate PB2
2 teaspoons sugar-free hazelnut syrup (like Torani)
1 cup ice (cubes or crushed)

1. Pour the milk into a blender.
2. Add the protein powder, PB2 and syrup to the milk. Blend completely.
3. Add ice and blend to the consistency you prefer.
4. Pour into a tall glass.
Tip: Make sure to add a straw so you can sip instead of gulp the smoothie, allowing you to enjoy it longer while watching the movie.
For a fruit-based smoothie, try out this recipe from my blog- Fruit Smoothie.

Looking for a way to serve up refreshing drinks in right-sized glasses? Check out Livliga’s elegant portion control dinnerware! Portion control never looked so good…or plentiful!

Get your FREE Healthy  Holiday Baking recipe ebook!

Enjoy! And Live Vibrant! 

Article originally posted on Sheila's Blog in


Great Healthy Living Quote #97-- Keep the Faith

Monday, June 2, 2014
Great Healthy Living Quote #97-- Keep the Faith
Sometimes we just need to be reminded...