Eat Well, Avoid Toxins, Be Happy!
March 2014
Wendy Kuhn, Holistic Health Coach
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Spring is almost here.   We are headed off for Knoxville to spend some time in the Great Smoky Mountains. I am really looking forward to that.  We will be celebrating our five year anniversary.   It gives me such joy to think about all of the magic times that have happened in the last five years and to anticipate the amazing adventures still to come. What big changes have happened for you in the last five years? What would you like to see in the next five years?  How will you make them happen?
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Avoid Toxins!

Have you ever considered how difficult it would be to avoid plastic in your life?   There are all sorts of obvious choices - store your food in glass, don't use plastic silverware, even buy BPA free products.  However, it's amazing how pervasive it is in our lives.   The FoodBabe has recently taken on Subway for the azodicarbonamide in its bread -- a plastic chemical.  

New York State is seeking to ban plastic microbeads from products such as exfoliators and toothpaste.  These microbeads are not biodegradable. Some manufacturers have already voluntarily removed them, but many have not.   Not only are you rubbing these harsh plastics on your skin, but they are getting into our waterways, killing aquatic life and polluting the oceans, rivers, lakes and streams.  This is bad for the environment and bad for our water supply.  In addition, for those fish it does not kill, the microbeads end up as a toxin inside the fish, which we then consume.   A clue that a product contains these microbeads is “polyethylene” or “polypropylene” on the ingredients list.   Avoid products that include these ingredients. 

Shopping non-toxic and avoiding products that are bad for us individually and globally is not only healthier but is "voting with your pocketbook", ultimately forcing businesses to pay attention to our preferences and reconsider the food and products they make available to us.   The Food Babe who has gotten Subway to agree to stop making bread with plastic, some companies  are voluntarily removing toxins from their products, and the FDA is finally going to make a decision on Triclosan (after 40 years). Consumer voices are making a difference in this arena, ultimately leading to a safer world for future generations.
Interested in exploring Non Toxic products?  Check out Ava Anderson Non Toxic or call or email me about this fabulous line of products.

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Eat Well!

I talk a lot in this column about eating healthy foods, prepared well.  I believe that the process of eating is as important as the food that you eat -- well, maybe not quite as important, but very important nonetheless!  By making sure that you eat your meals consciously and deliberately, you will feel better, you will experience your food more deeply (thus leading you to make healthier food choices), and you will be healthier.   What does this look like?
  • Chew each bite of food 20 or 30 times.   Once you do that easily, try increasing it to 40 or 50 times.  Your system will work more smoothly, you will find it easier to savor your food, and you will likely experience tastes you don't usually experience and enjoy.
  • Watching Downton Abbey the other night, I noticed Lady Mary being called in to a formal meal on her own.   Each meal does not need to be a formal state occasion, but take the time to set a place for yourself at a table.  Make eating an enjoyable timeout from your otherwise busy, hectic life.  A meal is a great opportunity to hit the pause button on your day.   If you have a family, use it as a time to reconnect with them,  focus your attention on the meal, and enjoy the whole experience.
  • Breathe before you start.  Take a moment before starting to eat to take a deep breath.   Be fully present in the moment.  Know that whatever else is going on with your day, this is a time to nourish yourself, mind, body and spirit. 
  • Think about your food as a life force.  Find a way to send energy to the food and to thank it for nourishing you. If you find Reiki to be a practice you relate to, hold your hands over your meal for a moment and channel life energy, if you say a prayer before meals, do that.
All of these practices will make meal time more enjoyable and also will nourish you in a way that mindlessly consuming food, even the healthiest food, in a car or in front of the TV will not.

Good, healthy, delicious, lovingly prepared food, shared with loved ones or eaten alone is one of the great gifts of our world -- Cherish it!

Be Happy!

Would you feel happier if you felt more empowered? Do you want to feel more empowered? Do you want other people to see you as empowered? Right now, stand up, plant your feet firmly and hold your hands over your head in a Y, stay like this for two minutes.  This is a power pose.

According to Amy Cuddy, a social psychologist from Harvard, if you assume a power pose or position, you will portray a more confident, empowered self, even after you have stopped the particular pose.  The power pose will decrease your cortisol (the stress hormone) and cause you to be more successful in job interviews and, by extrapolation, other encounters.  Check out her TED talk.

The idea that your body language communicates something about yourself is not particularly new. What I love about Cuddy's work is that you can pre-load on a power pose by doing it before being in a situation where you want to both feel and be perceived as empowered.  While she does not want you to make yourself small or diminished when you are with others, she also doesn't believe you need to portray power poses in front of others.  Instead, by having already done the power pose, you can walk into a situation feeling confident and therefore portray your best, most genuine self.  Offering warmth and compassion without reducing your presence can be an incredibly strong and powerful message.   

Try it! See how you feel after a couple of minutes in a power pose.   Do people react to you differently? Do you feel more successful?  Does it help you to be your own best self? Email me or leave a comment on my Facebook page. Let me know what happened for you!
A little about me and why I am doing this.

I am passionate about working with people to help them achieve their goals through making healthier nutrition and wellness choices.   My particular interest is in working with people who are seeking to make health and wellness choices to help to prevent cancer or its recurrence.   I believe that through healthy food choices, avoiding toxins, and taking steps to reduce stress and be happier, it is easier to achieve life goals and to stay healthier.   Because of my passion, I am a certified holistic health coach, a distributor of Ava Anderson Non Toxic Products, and a one-on-one provider for Heart Math.
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