Sunday, April 5, 2020

5 DAY CHALLENGES ARE TOTALLY A GOOD THING – Here’s why!

A couple of weeks ago we ran a 5 day challenge in our secret slimmers community.  It was a great success! 

Here is how it is helping people! 

Customer #1 – STRUGGLING TO GET STARTED

So many people who were struggling to get started on plan said that it gave them a good focus because they said to themselves “I can do this, it’s just 5 days!” 

Getting that kick start has helped many people to fly and they are now in the zone and staying on plan 24/7 until they get to their goal!

Other people who were struggling might only have achieved a couple of days, but they feel focused to try again on Monday and see what they can do this week! 

Customer #2 – TOTAL FOOD REPLACEMENT FAT BURNING MACHINES

We have so many customers who are in the zone, in ketosis, and their body is a fat burning machine! They are determined to stay on plan until they get to their goal!  Having a mini focus challenge in the group each week helps them to get a fresh buzz every Monday and have some accountability in the group!

Customer #3 – MAINTENANCE MISSION 

A lot of our customers have achieved their weight loss goal, and like to follow a 5:2 diet plan to maintain their weight and boost their health.  Having the 5 day challenge helps them to maintain their weight by doing total food replacement for a set number of days a week.

Customer #4 – TAKING THE SLOW ROUTE WITH BALANCE

Being at home all the time, with family and under quite stressful times, might mean that some people are not in the mindset to do total food replacement every single day of the week, and want to have some days to eat their family. 

If they feel every Monday they can get 5 days (or whatever number suits them) into their week, then they know they can at lose a pound or so a week and keep their eating habits in check.

 

Here’s what some of our customers are saying about joining the next 5 day challenge!

  • Me n my fiancé on board again. 👏👏
  • YES! Let’s get those pounds off for summer!
  • Super motivated! I want to emerge from this madness like a boss! Need to shrink the kangaroo pouch and build up the bum!
  • I’ll try …. again!!
  • I’m back in !!!
  • Yes I’m in! Totally focused! This lockdown is perfect to become the new me!
  • Ready to nail another week 💪💯% bring it on!
  • I’m in!!! After two weeks in isolation I cannot wait!!! I want to be slim for the summer ♥💯💪🏼
  • I’m in, I’m super motivated, it’s helping me turn lockdown into a positive experience
We have a 5 Day Challenge Kicking Off EVERY MONDAY in our Secret Slimmers group!
 
Come and join us, whatever your goal, this mini focus challenge can help you!
 
BIG Love,
Julz

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101 Blogs Written But I messed up my blog challenge!

On 27th December 2019, I decided I was going to blog every single day until 31st December 2020.  I did do this every day until 31st March, 96 days in a row! 

On 1st April we made some updates to our blogging platform.  One of the consequences of the updates was that I got locked out of my account!  It was late at night so I couldn’t get help to log in so I had to go to bed without my blog post done.  My intention was to write 2 blog posts the next day and move on with my goal. 

But missing this one day, just put me off my flow.  It reminded me of total food replacement, and how when you have “one day off” it can turn into many days or weeks off plan! 

Keeping in flow and keeping momentum going is so important! If we can stay on track with our habits and goals we must. 

When life throws us a curve ball that does mean that we are knocked off course, then we can’t throw in the towel.  We need to do our best to get back on track. 

So today I have written 5 blog posts to bring me to date with my goal.

That means so far I have published 101 blog posts since 27th December 2020.  It might not be perfect, but I am pleased I am still on track and not giving up! 

So whatever goals you set for 2020, just

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Friday, April 3, 2020

Crunchy Air Fryer Fish

This Southern-style air fryer fish recipe is healthy and gluten-free and seasoned to perfection. Use cod, catfish, or flounder for a crunchy finish with no deep-frying needed. This recipe also includes an oven-baked option! This healthy air fryer fried fish uses all cornmeal and a blend of spices to keep it gluten-free. Ingredients You’ll only…

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Thursday, April 2, 2020

Thyroid Cancer: An Overview

While thyroid cancer is one of the least common forms of cancer and also one of the most treatable, it still impacts thousands of people each year. As the American Thyroid Association explained, even patients with the most advanced forms of the disease have options for effective treatments and a relatively good prognosis.

The Thyroid
Though it doesn’t always garner much attention, the thyroid gland plays a very important role in the body. As the ATA explained, the thyroid is responsible for making hormones that are distributed to each of the organs in the body. The thyroid hormone itself is vital to the function of key organs like the heart and the brain. It also helps to keep the body warm and use its energy effectively. 

Risk Factors and Symptoms
As with all risk factors, there are some that can be controlled and some that can not. With thyroid cancer, family history, gender and age are common causes. Women are three times more likely than men to have thyroid cancer, the American Cancer Society explained. It most commonly occurs in women between the ages of 40 and 60 and in men between the ages of 60 and 80.

There are two big risk factors that can be monitored, however. Exposure to radiation and a diet lacking in iodine are two known risk factors that can lead to thyroid cancer – both of which are somewhat preventable. 

The majority of symptoms will occur in or around the neck and include swelling, pain

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Food Safety Guidelines For Grocery Shopping: What You Should Know During The Pandemic – From Registered Dietitians

No matter what a viral YouTube video tells you, you don’t need to sanitize your fruits and vegetables. Here are evidence-based tips for grocery shopping safely during the COVID-19 outbreak – from registered dietitians.

Close up trolley full of fresh products in modern supermarket. A women doing grocery shopping.

Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, grocery shopping is understandably a cause of stress and anxiety for many of us. When at the store, touching surfaces and objects such as shopping carts, freezer door handles, and grocery items are inevitable. You may be asking yourself if you need to disinfect your groceries? Is it okay to use reusable bags? Could the virus be transmitted from objects and food? These are all valid questions, considering the grocery store is such a high-touch space with possible risk. 

The good news is, there are no documented cases of COVID-19 that indicate viral transmission through food. However, given that COVID-19 can survive on surfaces for some time, theoretically, it is possible to pick up the virus if you touch a surface or an item someone infected has coughed or sneezed on. While grocery chains have ramped up cleaning and sanitation measures to keep customers safe, it is essential that we also maintain proper hygiene when grocery shopping. 

How to grocery shop safely during the COVID-19 outbreak

Mind the shopping cart/basket/food packaging

The shopping cart, basket and food packaging carry a certain level of risk. Bear in mind; it depends on the amount of virus deposited on surfaces as well as the dose you are exposed to.

According to estimates, from the New England Journal of Medicine, the virus remains viable on hard surfaces – making these potentially high-risk surfaces

  • Plastic and steel, for up to 3 days
  • Cardboard, for 24 hours
  • Copper, for four hours

It makes sense then, as a best practice measure, to use disinfecting wipes to clean high-touch surfaces of the shopping cart or basket. Remember to discard used wipes immediately after use. Alternatively, you could wear disposable gloves, but we wouldn’t recommend this for several reasons. Latex gloves could soon be in short supply for healthcare workers – who need them most. Plus, they are not durable and designed for everyday activities, like grocery shopping. There is a high risk they could rip. 

What’s really important is to use a hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol, as you leave the store and wash your hands immediately when you get home after your grocery trip.

What about packaged foods and containers? From what we know currently, you could set aside non-perishable groceries for three days before using them. 

All that said, let’s not forget that, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the transmission of the virus is far more likely to spread through respiratory droplets from an infected person and much less likely via surfaces or food. 

Keep your distance when grocery shopping

Though stores are not as crowded as they used to be before the pandemic, it is vital to keep a safe distance between yourself and fellow shoppers. Consider keeping a minimum distance of two meters away from other customers and staff. You want to be especially mindful of this one when lining up at the cash. Plus, use a credit or debit card at the checkout. That way, you limit the amount of contact handing and receiving money. Also, use your own pen to sign receipts. It’s also a good idea to visit stores during less busy hours to avoid crowds as much as possible. 

If you’re anxious, consider bagging your groceries yourself to minimize touching by the store clerk.

Do not use chemicals on produce

A person washing pomegranate under running water after her grocery trip

It is not safe to use disinfectants such as bleach, chlorine or isopropyl alcohol when washing fruits and vegetables. Neither is it a good idea to use disinfecting wipes to clean your produce. The use of any of these products could be harmful to the body and cause digestive problems. Unfortunately, natural products such as vinegar are not effective at killing the virus. To that end, the best strategy for cleaning fresh produce is vigorous washing under running water.

Despite what you’ve been hearing about washing food with soap and water, remember this: the USDA advises that we should not wash fruits and vegetables with detergent or soap because these are not approved or labelled by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for use on foods. There’s a chance that you could ingest soap or detergent residues absorbed on the produce. Your stomach may struggle to handle these residues, and you could experience nausea and a stomach upset.

Similarly, it’s essential to wash all fruits – even fruits that have a peel, such as bananas. Always wash your hands with soap and water after handling produce. You may consider using a scrub brush to cleanse your produce better. Don’t forget to clean the scrub brush thoroughly with soap and water after each use. 

Wash all containers

Consider washing all containers and non-porous packaged products with a small amount of soap and water before placing them in the fridge or cupboards. This includes all cans, bottles, dairy containers, and frozen food packages. If you are unable to wash certain non-perishable products, “quarantine” them in an out-of-the-way place for a minimum of three days.

Rethink bags when doing your grocery shopping

It would be best to avoid reusable grocery bags during the COVID-19 pandemic. On March 28th, 2020, the BC Centre for Disease Control released a 3-page guidance document for food retailers. In particular, the report lays out:

  • Customers should not use their own reusable bags, containers or boxes

When using single-use grocery bags, consider discarding them as a precaution, and wash your hands after handling bags.

Food Safety Guidelines for Grocery shopping infographic

Foods with a long shelf-life and what to do to make your fresh fruits and veggies last longer?

Grocery shopping of fresh ripe vegetables - avocado, sweet corn, cherry tomatoes, onion, garlic, lemon and chili pepper

Aside from food safety concerns while grocery shopping, you may also be wondering what to do to make your fruits and veggies last longer. Of course, we should all limit our trips to the grocery store to reduce the risk of exposure to the virus. 

Besides fresh produce – frozen essentials, pantry and canned food items also serve as excellent options, given the current circumstances. If you’re on the hunt for some Desi~licious recipe inspiration, here is a list of 44 easy and healthy recipes using pantry staples and frozen foods.

If you’re considering purchasing fresh vegetables and storing them for longer, think about blanching them.

  • Wash and chop vegetables and blanch them in boiling water for one minute. 
  • Then immediately rinse the vegetables under cold running water. This step helps deactivate the enzymes that result in food spoilage. 
  • Store the vegetables in airtight freezer bags or containers before freezing. 

It’s all about treating them well and storing them right. Remember, blanching works best with vegetables that have low water content such as carrots, Brussels sprouts, and green beans. 


No matter what a viral YouTube video tells you, here are evidence-based tips for #groceryshopping safely during the #COVID19 outbreak – from registered dietitians. #foodsafety #dietitian
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What about fruits and vegetables that literally last longer? Like with anything you buy, the length of time it will last primarily depends on the state it’s in. When purchasing fruits, choose options, such as apples, oranges, potatoes, and squashes, to name a few. Perishable fruits, such as berries, could be stored in the freezer. Fruits such as pineapple, cantaloupe, mangoes, and peaches can be chopped and placed in an airtight freezer bag or container before storage.

How to Store Food Sources of Protein after grocery shopping

Healthy grocery shopping foods high in protein. Meat, fish, dairy products, nuts and beans

Perishable items, including tofu, eggs, and yogurt, should be consumed by the best before date on the package. Beans, canned or dry, are an excellent option as they have a very long shelf-life. When it comes to fish and seafood, meat, and poultry, place them in airtight freezer bags and store them in the freezer – for at least two months. Be sure to date all foods placed in the freezer. 

Handling Food and Preparing Meals Safely

Always start by sanitizing all surfaces with a disinfectant. You could use any of the following:

  • Household cleaner or disinfectant
  • Soap and water
  • Bleach solution (use four teaspoons of bleach per litre of water
  • Alcohol solution with at least 70% alcohol

When preparing food safely, follow these four key steps:

Step 1: Separate

    • Keep raw poultry, meat, fish and seafood separate from other foods (especially fresh vegetables and fruits)
    • When using utensils or cutting boards for preparing meat, fish and poultry, wash them thoroughly with hot water and soap

Step 2: Chill

    • Do not leave raw poultry, meat, fish, and seafood at room temperature for more than two hours
    • Refrigerate all the above items at below 4°C
    • Frozen food should be thawed in the fridge or microwavenot at room temperature

Step 3: Clean 

    • Hands should be washed with soap and water for at least 20 seconds before, during, and after handling food. 
    • Wash all fresh produce under running water
    • All utensils, cutting boards, and serving trays should be washed with hot soapy water

Step 4: Cook

    • All poultry, meat, fish, seafood, and eggs should be cooked to 74°C; this would kill COVID-19 and all other pathogens in food
    • Use a food thermometer to measure the internal temperature of food
    • All hot food should be kept at above 60°C

Once the food is prepared, be sure to practice good hygiene to minimize hand contact. For example, when serving food, make use of utensils. And don’t forget to wash your hands frequently.

Washing of hands with soap after grocery shopping trip to be safe

What food safety questions do you have? Are you surprised by any of the precautions about grocery shopping? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

Desi~liciously Yours,
Shahzadi

If you enjoyed this blog post, would love to hear from you! Leave a comment, or share a photo and hashtag #desiliciousrd on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter! 


This blog post was written in collaboration with Sanaz Baradaran MSc, RD, OCT, BEd
Sanaz is a Registered Dietitian and nutritionist. She holds Bachelor’s degrees in Human Biology, Secondary Education, and Food and Nutrition, as well as a Master’s degree in Kinesiology and Health Sciences. As a Registered Dietitian in private practice, Sanaz is trained to provide advice and counselling about diet, food and nutrition using the best available evidence coupled with good judgment about the client’s unique values and circumstances.

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Wednesday, April 1, 2020

5 Steps to Start Creating a Healthy Relationship with Food

Having a healthy relationship with food can be really challenging. 

We see messages every day that says there’s “good” food and “bad” food or that you should eat this and never eat that. 

Food is our nourishment for our physical bodies and nourishment on a cellular level, so it’s incredibly important to pay attention to consuming a wide variety of foods that contribute to your health and prevent chronic disease. 

But food is also more than just that physical nourishment. It’s a way of connecting to others, to other cultures, exploring new things, experiencing pleasure and enjoyment from it. 

Food is something we can’t live without — meaning that it’s present in our day to day life for as long as we live, and most of us eat 35+ meals a week which is 35+ opportunities to nourish our bodies or 35+ ways we stress out about food.

But stressing out about food can sometimes contribute to more unhealthy behaviors than just practicing balance.

So in this video, I’m going to take you through 5 steps to practice to begin making a healthier relationship with food.

First things first, cultivating a healthier relationship with food isn’t impossible and it’s not something that happens overnight. It requires a lot of self-compassion, patience, practice, and many times professional practitioners who can support your journey.

You’re also not alone if one of your goals is to cultivate a healthier relationship with food.

There are so many factors that influence and play a

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Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Allergies and A Raw Diet: What You Need to Know

The power of a plant-based diet can never be underestimated. For more than 25 years, the Hallelujah Diet has been effectively eliminating sickness and helping people get back to living a strong and healthy life. By boosting the immune system with the nutrients and vitamins of raw, leafy greens and vibrant fruits and vegetables, the body’s miraculous self-healing abilities kick into gear. There is not one area of health that raw eating does not impact.

Take a look at how a primarily raw plant-based diet can help reduce and prevent allergies:

What Causes Allergies?
Numerous studies have indicated that diet has an effect on asthma and allergies. According to Asthma UK, avoiding certain foods and focusing on fresh, whole foods can help eliminate the severity of asthma as well as other allergies. Foods high in saturated fats, sugar, salt and items that are overly processed can trigger symptoms and make them worse.

Specifically, arachidonic acid found in red meat has been linked to allergic inflammation because of the cytokines and leukotrienes it brings into your body, the Naturopathic Medicine explained. The necessary amount of arachidonic acid that the body needs is already produced naturally, eliminating the need for the consumption of red meat.

Essentially, the Standard America Diet can weaken the immune system and make the body more susceptible to allergens. Avoiding the SAD can eliminate risk factors for allergies, as the Rev. George Malkmus has explained. 

Asthma and allergies impact thousands of Americans each year.

Focus on Diet, Not Pills
Food

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