Positively Charged for Healthy Life
By Carolyn Allen
Communicating with many of you is a great joy to me. For those of us who read this column (along with the other health columns that Meridian so generously publishes to encourage health and fitness), we have much in common – extra pounds, cravings, habits to overcome, and often there are family members, roommates or work situations that make it especially difficult to establish positive health environments.
I hope today’s column will help each of us accept the personal power of our Heavenly Father’s great and selfless gift to us – free agency . Could it be that for those of us who struggle with our weight, health choices could be one of the trials he has personally sent to test and prove us?
For the natural man is an enemy to God, and has been since the fall of Adam, and will be forever and ever until he yields to the enticings of the Holy Spirit and becometh a saint through the atonement of Christ the Lord, and becometh as a child, submissive, meek, humble, patient, full of love, willing to submit to all things which the Lord seeth fit to inflict upon him, even as a child doth submit to his father. (Mosiah 3:19)
You know how the word “veggie” is a nickname for vegetables? I’ve got a new one for you: It’s “neggies!” What’s a neggie ? Neggies are those little negative thoughts and reactions that spark and charge each other to sour a mood or day and often sabotage a weight loss plan.
The cute Mom who coined this word used it with her little son who was having a bad day. After they’d both struggled through the morning, she said “You know what? You’re covered in neggies ! Let’s go wash them off!” She defined “neggies” for him as he splashed in a long bubble bath. Then she taught him another new word, “pozzies” – for positive thoughts and actions.
He laughed at the two silly words and they made up a funny song as the water with all the neggies went down the drain. She vigorously dried him with a towel that she had amply loaded with pozzies (little kisses) so those positive thoughts/actions would stick. He was happy for the rest of the day.
This little story is the perfect illustration of the scripture above, which has always been a favorite of mine as it sums up the story of life, our opportunities, and choices in one short verse. As the little boy wrestled with a bad morning then accepted his mother’s bath and teachings, he was able to overcome … himself, which is the great promise of this scripture.
The neggies hit each of us – and when we are surrounded, as most of us are, by poor health choices and temptations, those particular neggies are exceptionally abundant! When it’s practical, a lovely, soothing bath to wash them away works wonders.
I do, indeed, know someone who regularly hops into the shower when the cravings hit her especially hard. However, we can quickly send the neggies down the drain and apply a “pozzie” by visualizing or actually making a trip to the sink to wash our hands vigorously and lovingly, then drying them and soothing on some lotion as we visualize our great potential accompanied by the Savior’s love and desire for us to overcome the natural man and become saints and devoted followers of healthy living.
Here we go:
Neggie : “I don’t have energy to exercise in the summer heat!”
Pozzie: “I do have ice water and a fan and enjoy exercising in front of the TV.”
Neggie: “I don’t have time to sit down for a real meal. Cookies will do for now.”
Pozzie : “I’ll nibble some veggies while finishing this project, and then eat. There’s nothing that cannot wait 10-20 minutes, allowing me to eat properly.”
Neggie : “I have so much to lose – what difference does one or two pounds make? Or one or two brownies right now?”
Pozzie: “I have every reason to know that today’s choices count. If not in pounds lost immediately, then in self-discipline and self-respect gained.”
Neggie: “I can’t stop eating — especially candy and junk!”
Pozzie : “I eat healthy portions of healthy foods to satisfy my needs. I keep my hands busy and away from unnecessary food and enjoy special foods at special times with special people.”
You get the picture, I’m sure, and can easily come up with your own pozzies to attack and destroy your neggies.
Cravings often set up a string of neggies. Health author Dave Osh has a one-minute approach to conquering them: When viewed with a positive attitude of love, they can actually be seen as “enticings of the Holy Spirit” because they are positive, good – and delicious when we choose to see them that way!
Snack on High Fiber Food
The higher the fiber in your food, the more satisfying it is and less carbs will be absorbed by your body. Your favorites should be fruits, veggies, or sugar-free whole grains. My preferred fruits are apples, grapefruit, plums and pears. Easy veggies are celeries and carrots because they are convenient to carry as stick snacks.
When you have cravings between meals, fruits and veggies are by far a better choice than sweets, biscuits, cookies, sandwiches, or other “light” snacks at your cafeteria or the nearby drugstore offer.
Eat Low Glycemic Index (GI) Foods
Craving on high GI snacks guarantees a vicious cycle of non-stop cravings because high GI snacks, which consist of sweets, cakes, soft drinks, tropical fruit, sandwiches, pasta, and so on, will be quickly absorbed and immediately released to the bloodstream. High GI foods are not a lasting source of energy and generate too quickly the next wave of cravings. If you’re snacking on low GI foods, you won’t be hungry so fast, you will have a slower release of energy to your blood stream and your pancreas won’t go havoc with a jumpy roller coaster of blood sugar.
Eat What You Really Like
Often our comfort foods are those which are the worst for our body. But forcing our body to eat what we really don’t like won’t do any good. I prefer to compromise. This lets me have a psychologically satisfied mind and abundance of food rather than starvation and continuous battle against restrictions.
If you like sweets, snack on artificially sweetened foods like sugar-free chocolate or even sugar-free ice-cream. My preferred sweet snack is a sugar-free protein bar or a chilled protein smoothie. If you like salty snacks replace the chips and tacos with almonds, peanuts or other nuts.
Stop fighting your cravings and follow these simple snack rules and you will find after a few weeks that your cravings are bothering you less than ever before. Your body stops sending you false craving signals because your mind is satisfied, your blood sugar is stable and you have a long duration supply of energy rather than short burst of blood sugar peak. You are on your way to lose weight, feel better and look younger – without fighting your cravings.
This information provides lovely enticings from our Heavenly Father’s rich supply of natural foods. We can do it! After all, like magnets and batteries, there’s a positive and a negative end. How the energy ultimately flows is up to us.
Today’s Empowerment: “I counter negative and discouraging thoughts with a positive affirmation statement and ACTION.
Today’s Recipe: Mack’s Chicken and Rice
We sometimes call this “Consolidated Schedule Chicken” because it works perfectly for Sunday dinner. Put it in as you leave at 250, then come back three hours later to the house smelling fantastic and dinner ready.
1 cup uncooked rice (we like brown best)
2 cups water
1 envelope Lipton onion soup mix
2 large boneless, skinless uncooked chicken breasts,
cut in half (6-8 oz. each)
Spray a 2 quart casserole with Pam. Put rice in. Sprinkle half of onion soup mix on rice. Top with chicken breasts Pour in water. Sprinkle remaining soup mix on top of chicken. Seal tightly.
Bake for 45 minutes at 350, or 3 hours at 250.
(Serves 4 at 245 calories, .5 g Dietary Fiber; 245 calories; 3 g Fat)
Serve with a large green salad, and fresh fruit for dessert.
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