Water the Drink of Life

A Health Coach told me to drink 60 ounces of water each day. I’m willing to trust that she is right that “Water flushes out toxins.”

Years ago I read a book an M.D. author wrote who claimed the health advice people are given is bad. At first I thought she could be right. Her confession that she drinks Naked Juice all the time killed her credibility.

This ENT doctor for kids in a hospital claimed you didn’t need to drink water throughout the day. That most of us get enough water from the food we eat. What about people who chow down on a Big Mac for dinner.

The more sensational your claim (the Medical Medium anyone?) the more likely you are to get a book contract to peddle your “knowledge” / “information” (often along with a product or pill for sale).

I’m not a licensed professional. What I write and speak about is to show readers and audience members things they can know to have a better life.

The truth is I practice what I preach–or else I too would be a charlatan selling modern-day snake oil.

My Health Coach is the one I turn to for solid advice. Right away after drinking 53 ounces of water for 7 days I saw a a difference.

Drinking water throughout the day helps you maintain energy. At least I feel lighter and more clear-headed when I drink water.

There’s a trick to make this easier. The Health Coach told me my idea was great to fill a water bottle before I go to bed and keep it on the night table. Quick and easy it is to drink the water first thing on waking in the morning.

In the drugstore I bought a 23-ounce double-walled stainless steel water bottle. As well I have a 10-ounce ceramic Venti mug of water with breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

The analogy is that you need to fuel up at the start of the day to feel and see the best benefit. It’s like filling up your gas tank before you take a road trip. Either way if you don’t do this in advance you’ll be running on empty for the rest of the day or the trip.

I’ll end here with this: wanting to be happy and healthy isn’t something to be ashamed of. Each of us deserves to feel good and be well. Even if our devotion to wellness threatens others who are miserable because they don’t like their own life.

The reality is you and I can live our ideal lives. Define “ideal”–it isn’t perfect or flawless. Ideal=authentic. That’s the difference.

I’m in cahoots with Marie Kondo on this one: Tidying up is the gateway to creating a happier and healthier life for ourselves. I’ll talk in the coming blog entry about how reading Kondo’s latest book sparked health as well as joy.

The Myth of Buying Organic Food

In the Frank Lipman, M.D. book How to Be Well he exposes the following as unhealthful fats to avoid consuming:

corn oil

canola oil

soybean oil

vegetable oil

sunflower oil

safflower oil

and of course palm oil that is not ethically sourced.

The dilemma is that these fats are cheap. They are used in organic food “products” that come in boxes or bags.

This is not real food in its natural state.

Skinny Pop popcorn uses sunflower oil.

The other dilemma is that most organic products use “natural flavor” which is a chemical additive.

I steer clear of consuming any food or drink with natural flavor.

Ginger ale has natural flavor. These chemical additives are everywhere.

Food manufacturers use these fats and chemicals because they’re cheap ingredients. The cheaper the product is to produce the cheaper it can be sold. Which is not how to choose what you eat and drink: by whether it costs only $2 dollars as opposed to $8 dollars.

Those of us who live in poverty should not be forced to subsist on unhealthy food either.

Greenmarket season is in full swing in New York City. People who use SNAP can use their “food stamps” to buy produce at Grow NYC markets. They can get health bucks to use to purchase more food.

You can even use EBT benefits to buy food online at markets to deliver to your home in New York City.

I urge readers not to buy food “products” as a rule.

You’ll pay for it down the road in higher medical costs.

Coming up I will see about posting new recipes I’ve created.

In the next blog entry I will talk about setting long-term goals.

As I near retirement I’ve been thinking long and hard about my life and how I want to live in my Golden Years.

These years should be golden not tarnished with ill health.

Eating to Beat Depression and Anxiety

Drew Ramsey, M.D. published the new book Eat to Beat Depression and Anxiety.

I’m set to check the book out of the library soon.

The wind-up is that like I’ve forever touted in this blog the food we eat can improve our mood.

Per the Women’s Health magazine page that reviewed the Ramsey book the following foods up our happiness quotient:

Leafy Greens:

Kale and Seaweed

Rainbow Produce:

Bell Peppers and Avocadoes


Wild Salmon Anchovies and Mussels

Nuts, Beans, and Seeds:

Cashews Red Beans and Pepitas


Grass-fed Beef

Eggs and Dairy:

Eggs and Fermented Dairy

Who says you can’t have yogurt in moderation?

I started having mussels once a week long before I read this Women’s Health review. Too I’ve always preferred cashews over other nuts.

If you don’t want to take my word for these things you can take the word of Drew Ramsey, M.D. who wrote the book Eat to Beat Depression and Anxiety.

The 80 Percent Rule

Years ago I had written in here about the 80 Percent Rule I adhered to: eating healthful food 80 percent of the time.

Devorah the health coach vetted that eating well 80-to-90 percent of the time was perfectly fine.

She believed that my indulgence in a pastry 2 or 3 times a month was okay too.

No– we should not think of treating ourselves to food as “cheating.” We should think of doing this as an “indulgence.”

There’s a difference: labeling food as good or bad is a moral judgment that sets us up to feel like we’re a good or bad person for eating the kind of food we do.

I have discovered chocolate souffle pots that I can order with my weekly groceries delivery.

The ceramic pots can be repurposed for ramekins to use for melted butter when you cook lobster for dinner.

Trying to be a saint 100 percent of the time will set us up to fail.

I can’t resist a cannoli on occasion : )

Hello Healthy Fat

The Health Coach I hired zoomed in on how I could boost my energy that had tanked:

“Have more protein and healthy fat at lunch and in the afternoon.”

Devorah said: “The carbohydrate bucket should be low.”

The exception is that sweet potatoes are a healthy carbohydrate.

How auspicious it was that 2 weeks before talking to the Health Coach I started buying the sweet potato chips seen in the photo above.

You can order them from Fresh Direct online in New York City. Or ask at your local food market if they stock this product or could start getting it.

The simple ingredients: sweet potato olive oil sea salt.

Devorah vetted that this is a great snack to have in the afternoon with a little hummus to help extend my energy later in the day.

Other food to elevate my energy:

Have an avocado or hummus with my salad at lunch. Or have celery with peanut butter.

I tipped Devorah off to Hope brand plain hummus. It uses olive oil not natural flavor.

Natural flavor is a chemical additive found in Sabra hummus.

The better option is the Hope brand plain hummus.

I steer clear of natural flavor in food and drink products.

I steer clear of food products with unhealthy fats like sunflower or safflower oil or corn or canola or vegetable oil.

I steer clear of potato chips and pretzels except every so often.

Devorah vetted that it’s okay for me to have a pastry 2 to 3 times a month. Plus a hot chocolate a few times a month.

In the next blog entry I’ll talk more about what Devorah told me.

The Fruited Plain

Two years ago I hired a Health Coach to help me design a better eating plan.

Goodbye, granola mush morning breakfast. Hello, scrambled eggs with shitake mushrooms.

This was in 2019. Since then I had regained my energy through fall 2020.

Stress lack of sleep and depression can cause fatigue.

“Sugar can exacerbate anxiety and depression,” Devorah the Health Coach told me.

Fruit grains and beans break down into sugar.

Devorah told me I could have 1 to 2 small pieces of fruit a day.

I add organic raspberries to my salad for lunch. Mix in organic blueberries with whole-fat plain Greek yogurt after I exercise.

For breakfast I have an organic navel orange. That’s all in terms of fruit.

Yes–sugar is the culprit in ill health more than any other substance is.

A lot of us had become depressed while sheltering indoors during the pandemic. Not only this a person can be depressed because they’re under stress.

Whatever the root of what you’re going through as I’ve written in here before healthful food can improve a person’s mood.

How am I climbing my way out of the recent fatigue I’ve experienced?

First I have started to focus on living for today. Not worrying about what might happen in the future.

Hiring Devorah was the strategy that helped me start to regain my energy.

Though I paid her you will get her action plan for free courtesy of what I’ll be covering in the coming blog entries.

National Nutrition Month

March is National Nutrition Month.

As of today I have only two months until Greenmarket season starts in New York City.

Some Grow NYC markets are open year-round in NYC.

In the coming blog entries I’ll give recipes for coleslaw and mustard greens.

In the first four months of the shutdown in New York City in 2020 I had been buying organic CSA produce boxes. Cooking my own meals with the vegetables.

This month in here I will focus on recipes again.

Too I want to talk about surviving a setback like the pandemic or living through a challenge that threatens to throw your health out of focus.

Stay tuned.

Trusting Your Intuition

Trusting your intuition is key when making changes to improve your health.

Over the years I’ve decided to do things long before I read that an expert said to do these things.

A lot of times it comes down to common sense. In the coming blog entry I’ll talk about a book that has cutting-edge health information for those of us over 40.

Some of the changes I figured out to make were these:

  1. Only have yogurt 2 to 3 times a week. Make it full-fat plain Fage yogurt mixed in with organic blueberries.
  2. Eat mostly vegetables and make most of them organic.
  3. Cook my own dinners more often every week.
  4. Change how often and how long I work out. After I turned 53 I started to lift weights at home 2x per week for 30 to 40 minutes. Instead of using machines at the gym 3 days a week for 50 minutes each session.
  5. Rarely drink milk.
  6. Have a pastry or other “treat” every so often. Progress not perfection is the goal.
  7. Scramble organic eggs and veggies for breakfast.

After making these changes I lost 12 pounds in one year. I’m also fitter today than I was 7 years ago dead lifting 205 pounds at the gym.

My trainer gave me new Upper and Lower Body routines to do. I’ll post them here in a couple of weeks.

Coming up soon a few recipes as well.

How to Reset

I’m going to reset in a slow and steady fashion.

Tweaking things a little that have gotten out of hand–like eating Christmas cookies on Saturday : )

The Changeology book 90-day action plan has always worked for me with the 5 steps you execute one after the other.

Focusing on one or two habits at a time to change is the difference.

My goal is to return to eating organic raspberries and blackberries. To add in having organic green apple slices with unsweetened almond butter.

Just nix having bananas. They are high in sugar.

Not all fruit and vegetables are created equal. White food isn’t healthful. Cauliflower is the exception to this rule.

My goal this week is to start to reset my routine.

To this end I bought from Macy’s a gold-and-white striped small bowl with black letters inside that shout: Happy Everything!

To make eating berries a cheerful experience.

As well as changing up what I’ve been eating I’m continuing to modify my workout routines.

More in the coming blog entry about changing how I exercised post-50.

Using My Experience to Empower Readers

It’s January and too often people join a gym exercise madly for 2 months then quit when they don’t see progress.

The fixation on weight loss disturbs me. The fact is that when a person adopts consistent healthy habits permanently they will naturally lose weight.

Without having to go on a restrictive diet or any kind of “diet” written about in the plethora of diet books published every year like clockwork.

I’m compelled to write about my experience to empower readers. I lost 15 pounds and that hadn’t been my goal.

My goal was to eat more healthful food and continue to lift weights 2x per week as often as I could.

Would you like to know how I lost 15 pounds without even trying to?

I’m 55 years old and living in menopause. Yet I haven’t gained weight.

What I propose is a simple plan. It might not be easy to adopt at first if a person is totally out of shape.

Only it will work especially for those of us who are older.

Should you want to dive right into the details you can buy the Frank Lipman, M.D. book The New Rules of Aging Well.

Before I checked out of the library this book I had already been doing the things Dr. Lipman advised us older folk to do.

A preview of what I’ve done over the years:

Have yogurt only 2 or 3 times a week.

Stop eating meat of any kind that comes from a CAFO.

Not eat a lot of food every day.

Engage in intermittent fasting: have dinner between 6:00-7:30 p.m. Wait 16 hours to eat again when I’m at home the next day. Scramble eggs for breakfast after this fast.

Have only 2 meals a day every so often.

Make my “3 square meals” small ones.

Cut out eating granola and grains.

Cook my own dinners more often every week.

Change the frequency and duration of my workout routines. Lift weights in my living room. Use lower weight and higher reps for each exercise.

Have the cannoli on New Year’s Eve because I’m not perfect : )