HOW THE SWEET POTATO RESCUED ME

Sweet potato isolated on white background

Once again I dove into a project without all the information I needed. I was sure it would be okay. Sagittarius enthusiasm would carry me through whatever came up. I went on a detox and purification diet about 4 years ago. It was a 21-day program. The first 10 days of the program were meatless with a pretty specific menu of regimented veggie recipes choice to follow. There were good supplements and juice shakes with protein powder to consume daily. I lost 7 or 8 pounds the first week even though it wasn’t designed to be a weight loss program. The program meals required prep time and, of course, no “out to eat” meals.


NutriBullet NBR-1201 12-Piece High-Speed Blender/Mixer System, Gray (600 Watts)

I fired up my Nutribullet and followed the program. By day 4 I hit the lack of energy wall plus the “brain fog” thing was real. When I finally reached day 11 and was allowed to add small portions of clean meat back into my diet, I hoped to brain fog would lift. No luck, the mid-day slump continued.

Day 12’s meal plan was similar to the others except the dinner included a baked whole sweet potato. I had only eaten the holiday version and was not a big fan. That fact made this baked, buttered, and cinnamon tuber in med detox a heavenly rescue for my program. The brain fog lifted and my energy returned. At the end of 21 days, I had learned a lot and I saved the excellent veggie recipes.

After thinking there must be something wrong with this program, I went back over all the literature to see if I had missed something. I found that I had misread the directions and was supposed to have made myself another veggie juice shake with protein powder added about the time of my regular afternoon slump. It was my fault, not the program.

austin-ban-986-unsplash

In the late 1980s, I belonged to a backpacking club, The Sunset Beach Trudgers. We would head into the local mountains once a month for an overnight outing. The group was almost all novice hikers of various ages and physical abilities. There were a couple of organizers who would scout out spots and acquire any needed permits. Alton was a sort of spiritual leader of the group. He was in his 60’s and fit. The group always had some new young enthusiast, who would have the latest rental gear from REI. Alton’s gear was from garage sales. Our newcomer would snack on the latest protein bar from Whole foods. Alton had a baked sweet potato wrap in foil. By the end of the hike, Alton was still full of energy and our newcomer was learning a nutrition lesson.

The baked sweet potato is now on my regular menu.

***Nutrition Facts

Baked Sweet potato, boiled Sweet potato, mashed Sweet potato

Amount Per

100 grams 1 sweet potato, 5″ long (130 g)1 cup, cubes (133 g)

1 cup, cubes (133 g)

Calories 114

 

% Daily Value*
Total Fat 0.1 g 0%
Saturated fat 0 g 0%
Polyunsaturated fat 0 g
Monounsaturated fat 0 g
Cholesterol 0 mg 0%
Sodium 73 mg 3%
Potassium 448 mg 12%
Total Carbohydrate 27 g 9%
Dietary fiber 4 g 16%
Sugar 6 g
Protein 2.1 g 4%

 

Vitamin A 377% Vitamin C 5%
Calcium 4% Iron 4%
Vitamin D 0% Vitamin B-6 15%
Cobalamin 0% Magnesium 8%

Be Healthy,

Dave

50 — Whatever

You didn’t know this because I didn’t say anything about it, but I recently had a brief mid-life crisis, which I thought was about turning 50. And because I was efficient about it, I had it last year. What had happened was, after I was done with my book tour for The Consuming Fire in…

via 50 — Whatever

Top 5 Fitness Gifts for Mom

Get something useful, colorful, and a sign you appreciate all the work. Here are 5 choices that fit the perfect gift plan.

Never miss rope is great for travel workout.

 

  • by Volare-HK


I love mine. The fiber stays in your diet,


Lots of choices.

Pick your color.

Enjoy these gifts with a click.

Be healthy,

Dave

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RECREATIONAL FITNESS

Swallows To Capistrano

 

FilmPhotographyMain

It is spring and summer will be here soon. Everyone is preordained to go outside for recreation. By some genetic vestige of the pre-urbanite, like swallows returning to Capistrano, we head for our favorite outdoor activity. The air breathes differently. The sun feels warmer but not burning hot. Our body energy patterns seem all tuned up. The truth may hurt. Our bodies might not be ready for Spring. Recreational Fitness: activities where the primary purpose of the activity is participation, with the related goals of improved physical fitness, fun and social involvement (Encyclopedia.com). Biking, running, walking, swimming, all types of water sports, climbing, horseback riding, and park lawn relaxing all fit the definition and all have their hazards.

Summer bodies are made in the winter

The fitness industry says, “Summer bodies are made in the Spring”. They are trying to capitalize on our natural drive for spring activity and sell us something. Logically, we know it takes more than 2 or 3 months to get a “summer body”, but let’s keep the dream alive. We can start the activities, but let’s do it right.

Every activity needs a warm up. Do some basic stretches. Start slow and work your way up to the more strenuous conditions.

bike parts

In the 1970s and 1980s, I was a High School Physical Education teacher. Student classes in P.E. were changing from being mandatory to being an elective. Physical Education teachers were looking for ways to keep students active, enrolled, and interested. I started a bicycling class. It was well attended and fairly popular. The class began by getting to know your bike. Students learned the names of the parts and how they worked. They learned some basic maintenance. The boys and girls learned how to fix a flat tire. Next, I went over what safety gear to have and how to stretch before a ride. All this was done before students could ride their own bike in the class. It was the preparation for a successful recreational activity. We started riding with short trips around the campus. The purpose was to practice gear changes and braking before we headed out. The workout excursions were on the nearby concrete and asphalt riverbed and there we all got our fitness workout safely.

older-couple-with-bikes

The concepts and the rituals apply for any spring activity. You should get to know your gear (including your body), learn some basic maintenance, have the safety gear, stretch to warm up, start slow and short to make sure everything works, and you know how to work everything.

Your spring activities could be gardening or a long jungle river rafting excursion, let’s come out of it whole, perfect, and complete.

Grocery Store Gardening

Summer bodies are not built in the spring, summer bodies are built in the shopping cart. Eat right all year.

Be well,

Dave

Next Blog: How the Sweet Potato rescued me, really.

The Top Mindfulness Books

My blog post from April 16th was designed to encourage people to look at meditation or mindfulness to relieve stress. The purpose of the exercise is to promote healthy living. Here are some resources to get you into meditation shape.

Wherever You Go, There You Are: Mindfulness Meditation in Everyday Life
 click it to get it

I’m reading this 1994 published book now. I believe it can change lives.

Peace Is Every Step: The Path of Mindfulness in Everyday Life
 click it to get it

This is the master, you can not go wrong with any of this man’s books. This one is on Bill Gates reading list.

Meditation for Beginners
 click it to get it

This is a guide from a man who knows how to teach to process.

Once you go looking for the “right” book, you only need to start to succeed.

Be healthy,

Dave

MEDITATION: 3 MINUTES TO DE-STRESS

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“ THEY” Don’t Use The Word Because It’s Not P.C.

A recent NCIS episode had the main character trying to find a murderer (that’s the plotline every week). The suspect was hiding in a PTSD group that was practicing meditation as part of their therapy. The Commanding Officer corrected the main character for his use of the term meditation. The Commander said,” This is the Navy, we use the term Mindfulness”. This is now the mainstream term. Congressmen are writing books about Mindfulness like it’s new. It, of course, is not.

group

At the start of this school year, I team-taught as a substitute in a large High School, where the teacher had a unit and lesson on the practice of Mindfulness. The school district had just had training for this excellent quality teacher on how to teach mindfulness to her students. One of the purposes was to help prevent teen suicide. The lesson seemed well received.

The mindfulness term seems to be a P.C. attempt to avoid any religious or spiritual overlap from meditations’ origin. I am not a fan of P.C. terms, but PTSD de-stressing and preventing teen suicide are admirable goals. The goals allow me to accept another P.C. term into my vocabulary.

buddhist-1807526__340

Every healthy aging program includes a statement about reducing stress. That sounds right, but personally, I run to the extremes. I have caustic days. I must get relief and fast on those days. Here are my quick tips and practices for immediate stress relief.

  1. H.A.L.T.- hungry, angry, lonely, tired. I check in with me to see if I am any or some of these things. I try to fix that first.
  2. BREATH- often the most important things in life are the simplest. What is more basic and more important than breathing?  I follow my breath for a while.
  3. PRAY and MEDITATE- a daily practice so that my connection and skills are always available.
  4. BE GRATEFUL- practice gratitude to remove stress by naming 5 things you are grateful for in 30 seconds.

The whole process can clean me up and turn me around in minutes. The Higher Power has created people in his image. You and I have the power to transcend any situation.

If you are new to this and need a starting point, check out a podcast at https://www.livestrong.com/article/13708902-how-to-calm-down-in-under-3-minutes.

Be Healthy,

Dave

Next Time: Recreational fitness

2019 Best Diets, The Suckers List

 

What is a Diet?

A diet is the kind of food that a creature habitually eats.

Cockatiel

We have a cockatiel at our home. I can go to the pet store and find a bag of “Cockatiel Food”, feed him and he is happy and presumably healthy. It is his diet. People are omnivores. Classic omnivores have a diet that consists of edibles from plant and animal origin.

  lion meat

 

Go ahead and search the internet for the list of the 10 best diets. Since the list has little to do with what you are supposed to eat but rather what someone is selling for you to eat, it will be a suckers list. In your search, you will need to know what you want your diet to do. Do you want to lose weight, gain weight, muscle up, energy up, mode up, libido up, flatten the belly, or lower your Blood pressure and A1C? The list can go ad infinitum. It’s a sucker list.

 

I recently looked into Michael Greger’s diet information. He is a Vegan and has a book “How to not die”. He writes about how to diet to fight certain diseases that kill us. I also looked into Dr. Steven Gundry, a former cardiologist who is also a “plant-based diet” advocate and author.

cherry picking

"Colorful Candy, Isolated on white"
“Colorful Candy, Isolated on white”

There are a lot of MD’s who have become an entrepreneur in the business of selling various diet plans and supplements to the unhealthy American consumer. The problem with is that the advocacy of each one is based on “cherry-picked” facts to prove a predetermined outcome. Bad science. These bright minds pick proof that supports what they want to sell and then ignore the balance of information from various studies. It seems almost all “diets” work for someone. They help carry a specific goal, but none can work for everyone. There is too much variety in the species for there to be a universal plan. Your plan must be customized for you.

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I am repeating some basic information for a healthy diet.

  • Eat fruit and vegetables with everything.
  • Avoid Bio-engineered food, no GMO veggies.
  • Limit over packaged food products.
  • Limit fast food
  • Avoid over-consumption by monitoring caloric input.

THE 2019 Winner for Best Diet       

Source: livestrong.com Jan. 21,2019

The Mediterranean Diet

The Mediterranean Diet is eating that emphasizes and encourages meals to be made at home, made of fresh and whole-food ingredients. The ingredients include vegetables, legumes, fruits, grain, lean protein, nuts, wine, cheese, oil, and herbs and spices. This diet likes social eating and smaller portion sizes than most Americans eat regularly. If you want a recognized plan, there are tons of recipes and resources available for this one. In order to keep it from being another “sucker” plan, add and subtract from it based on your personal needs and goals. It is a great starting point.

Next time: Quick Mindful Meditation to relieve stress.

Be Healthy,

Dave