Deanna

Wednesday, 25 May 2016 18:25

Digestion Tips

Did you know that everything wrong with our body starts in the gut? It’s true. The digestive system starts at the mouth and ends at the other end. Good Digestion is often taken for granted until.... the symptoms start to mount up and the discomfort becomes unbearable or worse like IBS or Irritable Bowel Syndrome.

It could go something like this:

Indigestion 2 to 3 hours after meals
Bloating discomfort after eating
Full, tired feeling, especially after eating meat
Excessive gas, belching, or burping after meals
Burning sensation in stomach, heartburn
Heavy, tired feeling after eating
Constipation
Stools poorly formed, pale, greasy, floating
Undigested food particles in stools
Ridges on fingernails, slow growing nails

Then it is often misdiagnosed as too much stomach acid and you are prescribed an antacid. But the fact is if you are experiencing these symptoms the cause is most likely LOW Stomach acid.

What does TOO MUCH stomach acid look like?

Stomach pain 5 or 6 hours after eating usually at night
Stomach pain relieved by eating or by drinking milk
Stomach pain aggravated by worry or tension

If we are not digesting our food properly, we then do not absorb the nutrients from our food.

Greasy foul-smelling stools
Chronic diarrhea
Undigested food in stools
Mucous in stools
Foul-smelling intestinal gas

This is called malabsorption.

After years of faulty digestion, the liver has to do some extra work to pick up the slack. This takes away from the liver’s vital processes of clearing out toxins.
Symptoms start to mount up like those listed below:

Skin oily on nose and forehead
Dark circles or bags under eyes
Fats/greasy foods cause nausea, headaches
Stool appears yellow, clay coloured, foul odoured
Pale, greasy stools that float
Foul smelling bowel gas
Bad breath/bad taste in mouth, excess body odour
Pain on inside of right shoulder blade
Consistent gas and bloating from most foods and especially from onions, cabbage, radishes, and cucumbers.

The lack of digestive enzymes in the gut will lead to an overgrowth of bad bacteria. We have billions of good and bad bacteria present in the body at any given time. If our digestion is not working optimally, we are guaranteed to have an overgrowth of yeast and parasites that can lessen our quality of life.

Again, symptoms can look like this:

Indigestion, bloating after meals
Intestinal gas, especially after sugary foods
Diarrhea or constipation
Urinary tract infections
Yeast infections, candida
Cold sores, canker sores

The following is a summary of guidelines that help to create the optimum conditions for digestion. By following these steps, you will be allowing your own processes of digestion, absorption, elimination and intestinal immunity to work as efficiently as possible.

Timing
Eat only when genuinely hungry
Have the largest meal in the middle of the day
Spend at least 30 minutes eating each meal
Allow no more than 3.5 hours between main meals
Have 3 main meals and 2 snacks each day
Consume nothing after 9:00pm

Setting the Mood

Do not eat when angry, anxious, upset, bored or overtired
Eat with congenial company in pleasant conversation or eat alone in contemplative silence or with pleasant music
Avoid reading, watching TV or arguing while eating

Awareness

Eat slowly, chewing food thoroughly
Take time to enjoy the taste, texture, and aromas of the food
Swallow only when each mouthful has turned to paste
Eat only enough to feel good. Never stuff yourself

Food Selection

Drink two litres of purified water daily
Be sure to consume 30-35 grams of fibre each day
Avoid processed foods, refined sugars and flours
Consume alcohol and caffeine sparingly, if at all
Suspect allergy/intolerance to any food to which one has addictive cravings or to any that produces excess mucus, or gastrointestinal stress of any kind.
Observe your body’s reactions to lactose, gluten and wheat
Do not drink liquids during meals, as they can dilute stomach acids. Drink at the end of the meal only.

If you are still having problems after trying these suggestions, it is time to book an appointment.  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  

Wednesday, 25 May 2016 18:16

4 Hormones that Control Your Weight

4 Hormones That Control Your Weight

It’s Monday and you spent the entire weekend clearing out your cupboards, throwing away all of the ‘bad’ foods, grocery shopping and preparing your meals for the week. You feel really good about being ‘good’ this week.

The diet has to work this time.

By 10:00am you are on a roll, about to eat your mid-morning snack and then it happens… you get called into a meeting and leave your apple and 1 tablespoon of natural peanut butter on your desk. Hunger sets in but you can’t leave the emergency last minute meeting.

By 1:00pm you are starving, only having had your breakfast at 7:30am. It’s been five and a half hours since you’ve last eaten. You take one look at the salad you were so excited to eat, turn on your heels, and head for the nearest coffee shop. A salad isn’t going to cut it today… you are starving.

As the guilt sets in for skipping your salad and deviating from your diet on day 1 you think to yourself, “If I had a little more will power I would have eaten my salad.”

Sound familiar?

Willpower is no match for hormones and hormonal based food cravings. See, hormones help to regulate metabolism, blood sugar control, sleep, stress, cravings and your weight. You probably heard about the importance of balancing your hormones before, still, let me explain to you the 4 hormones that are in charge of your weight.

Once you understand just how powerful your hormones are you will be in a stronger position to keep them balanced so that they work for you instead of against you.

4 Hormones That Control Your Weight:

Insulin:
Fat storing hormone. Carries glucose molecules out of your blood stream to be delivered to your working muscles. Stores glucose (carbs) as fat for later use when muscle cells are full.

Cortisol:
Stress hormone. Secreted in response to emotional or physical stress (fit or flight response). Chronic stress keeps cortisol in the blood stream resulting in lowered immunity, suppressed thyroid function (metabolism), blood sugar imbalances (insulin) and increased abdominal fat.

Leptin:
Satiety controller. This hormone regulates hunger and feelings of being full. It’s signaled by the hypothalamus and secreted in fat cells. If leptin resistant you don’t feel full and keep eating. Tied to insulin and food cravings. Insulin resistance and leptin resistance are two hormones that can severally damage the body’s ability to lose weight.

Ghrelin:
Stimulates hunger. Secreted in the lining of the stomach and from the pancreas. Ghrelin increases before meals to stimulate hunger and is supposed to decrease after meals. Tied to leptin, which induces feelings of being full. When leptin resistance, insulin resistant and stressed out (high cortisol), ghrelin doesn’t shut off constantly telling your body you are starving.

See, it’s not your fault. Hormone imbalances are to blame.

When your hormones are out of whack you crave carbs or fatty foods. You feel hungry most of the time and never quite feel full and satisfied. You have a hard time sleeping because you are under stress, which perpetuates the problem further. When you are stuck in this cycle weight loss is next to impossible.

So how do you turn it around and balance the 4 hormones that promote weight loss?

1. Avoid all simple sugars, processed grains and foods with hidden sugars.

Sugar promotes high levels of insulin secretion. This includes 100% whole wheat and whole grains. Replace your grains with high fiber beans, lentils, fruits and vegetables.

2. Start your day with a protein and fat breakfast.

Protein and fat promote feelings of fullness, keeps blood sugar levels stable and signals the hypothalamus that you are full. Try to have 2-3 whole eggs with 1 cup veggies cooked in 1-2 tsp of coconut oil.

3. Eat every 4 hours.

Avoid snacking every 2 hours or so. When you are constantly eating, your body doesn’t have time to use up the glucose for energy and never gives your hormones a break. Your meals should be big enough to keep you feeling full for 4 hours.

4. Don’t over exercise or do long bouts of cardio.

Remember, we are trying to reduce cortisol levels (stress). Long bouts of cardio create a stress response in the body. Short, intense workouts, like sprints or weight lifting, is the best way to go. Workouts shouldn’t last more than 30 – 45 minutes if done at the right intensity.

5. Get 7 hours of sleep every night.

The body repairs itself during sleep. Your liver completes its detoxification cycle and your pancreas processes out the remaining glucose. When you don’t have quality sleep it creates a stress response, elevates insulin levels and gives you cravings for carbs.

Balancing your hormones is vital to your goal of losing weight. Follow these 5 tips above to gain better control over your hormones and the weight will start to come off. The best part is that when you do the work to balance your hormones, losing weight isn’t a battle of wills anymore.

Do you still want more help?  I create personalized plans to help you balance your blood sugar, balance your hormones and lose the weight.   Book your Free 30-minute consult today.

Tuesday, 03 May 2016 15:29

Hypothyroidism Risk/Symptoms Checklist

You’ve gone for blood work and your doctor says your results are “normal”.  Your TSH reading is in the normal range, so your thyroid function is fine.  So why are you still experiencing symptoms? Lack of energy, weight gain, cold hands and feet, hair falling out and low sex drive.

Just because you fall within the “normal” range does not mean that this score is normal for you.  Because we are all bio-chemically unique, one person may feel great with a reading of 4.0 while you may feel best at 1.0.  Some doctors are reluctant to prescribe medication unless your reading is above 5.5, but if you are experiencing symptoms, suspect you are in the early stages of thyroid disease.  

So what is a girl to do when all else seems to fail? Well, there are a few things your Holistic Nutritionist can help you address to hopefully get your body back to a better state of balance.  Thyroid hormones require a balance of macro and micro nutrients.  Cleaning up your diet and identifying food sensitivities can go a long way to reduce the stress placed on the body and in turn the adrenals and thyroid.  Addressing mineral deficiencies, liver and digestive disturbances as well as managing other stressors such as lifestyle and exercise can all be beneficial to certain individuals.  

Hypothyroidism Risk/Symptoms Checklist

You can use this checklist to bring to your health practitioner to help aid in getting a proper diagnosis of hypothyroidism, or as background information in your discussions regarding fine tuning your dosage so you are at the optimal TSH level for your own level of wellness.

My risk factors for hypothyroidism include:

____ I have a family history of thyroid disease
____ I have had my thyroid "monitored" in the past to watch for changes
____ I had a previous diagnosis of goiters/nodules
____ I currently have a goiter
____ I was treated for hypothyroidism in the past
____ I had post-partum thyroiditis in the past
____ I had a temporary thyroiditis in the past
____ I have another autoimmune disease
____ I have had a baby in the past nine months
____ I have a history of miscarriage
____ I have had part/all of my thyroid removed due to cancer
____ I have had part/all of my thyroid removed due to nodules
____ I have had part/all of my thyroid removed due to Graves' disease/hyperthyroidism
____ I have had radioactive iodine due to Graves' Disease/hyperthyroidism
____ I have had anti-thyroid drugs due to Graves' Disease/hyperthyroidism

I have the following symptoms of hypothyroidism, as detailed by the Merck Manual, the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists, and the Thyroid Foundation of America

____ I am gaining weight inappropriately
____ I'm unable to lose weight with diet/exercise
____ I am constipated, sometimes severely
____ I have low body temperature (feel cold when others feel hot/need extra sweaters, etc.)
____ I feel fatigued, exhausted
____ Feeling run down, sluggish, lethargic
____ My hair is coarse and dry, breaking, brittle, falling out
____ My skin is coarse, dry, scaly, and thick
____ I have a hoarse or gravely voice
____ I have puffiness and swelling around the eyes and face
____ I have pains, aches in joints, hands and feet
____ I have developed carpal-tunnel syndrome, or it's getting worse
____ I am having irregular menstrual cycles (longer, or heavier, or more frequent)
____ I am having trouble conceiving a baby
____ I feel depressed
____ I feel restless
____ My moods change easily

____ I have feelings of worthlessness
____ I have difficulty concentrating
____ I have more feelings of sadness
____ I seem to be losing interest in normal daily activities
____ I'm more forgetful lately 

I also have the following additional symptoms, which have been reported more frequently in people with hypothyroidism:


____ My hair is falling out
____ I can't seem to remember things
____ I have no sex drive
____ I am getting more frequent infections, that last longer
____ I'm snoring more lately
____ I have/may have sleep apnea
____ I feel shortness of breath and tightness in the chest
____ I feel the need to yawn to get oxygen
____ My eyes feel gritty and dry
____ My eyes feel sensitive to light
____ My eyes get jumpy/tics in eyes, which makes me dizzy/vertigo and have headaches
____ I have strange feelings in neck or throat
____ I have tinnitus (ringing in ears)
____ I get recurrent sinus infections
____ I have vertigo
____ I feel some lightheadedness
____ I have severe menstrual cramps 

 

If you check off several of these symptoms and would like to make some positive changes, book an appointment with me and we will create an individualized plan to start returning your body to health. 

Click here to start working with me

Deanna Trask RHN

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  519-270-1889

Tuesday, 26 April 2016 15:34

Cabbage Slaw

 
We spend most of our weekends in the summer at our trailer located in beautiful Sauble Beach where I
grew up. That means we get a lot of company, which we love. I don’t want to spend all weekend
cooking, as I would rather spend that time kayaking and biking and enjoying the beach. I always
make some salads up so we can eat away at them all weekend. This is one of my favourites. It is so
easy to make and is loaded with fibre and antioxidants. It keeps well for a few days in the fridge. -Dee
 
 
 
Cabbage Slaw:
1 head of purple cabbage shredded
1 bag of shredded broccoli or carrot slaw (or both)
1-2 apples washed and cut into bite size pieces
2 ounces of hemp seeds (can be added when serving if you prefer)
¼ - ½ cup of dried cranberries, raisins or goji berries
Dressing:
¼-½ cup of grape seed oil
¼-½ cup of vinegar (Balsamic, apple cider or red wine all work well)
2 tbsp raw honey
1 tbsp minced ginger
1 tbsp minced garlic
Drizzle over the salad and let the flavours meld together.
Amount of oil and vinegar will change with the quantities of vegetables you use.
 
 
Wednesday, 20 April 2016 22:30

Dee's Healthier Chocolate Chip Cookies

Dee’s Healthier Chocolate Chip Cookies
 
3/4 cup whole rolled oats
1 cup whole-wheat or spelt flour
1  cup ground flax seeds
1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup butter, softened
2/3 cup raw cane sugar
 1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
 1 cup chocolate chips or carob chips
1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
 

Directions:
 
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Coat 2 baking sheets with cooking spray (not required if you're  using non-stick pans)
Mix oats and flour in a medium bowl. Add baking soda and salt and whisk until mixed in. Whisk in wheat germ, flax and coconut.
Beat butter in a large bowl with an electric mixer until fluffy. Add granulated sugar, brown sugar, egg and vanilla; beat until smooth and creamy. With the mixer running, add the dry ingredients, beating on low speed until just combined. Stir in chocolate chips and walnut pieces using a wooden spoon or spatula. Chill the dough in a refrigerator for at least 1 hour. The dough should be firm before proceeding with step 3.
Force a spoon into the dough to remove about 2-3 tablespoonfuls per cookie, at least 1 inch apart, onto the prepared baking sheets. Bake cookies, until firm around the edges and golden on top, about 12 minutes. Remove baking sheets from the oven immediately and cool the cookies for 2 minutes, then transfer to wire racks with a spatula to cool.
Wednesday, 20 April 2016 20:14

Grilled Veggie Kebobs

 

Spring has finally sprung and many folks turn to grilling their dinner.  We actually grill all winter long but definitely more frequently once the snow is gone.

This recipe is from an Ebook my friends and I wrote called Chillin and Grillin.  It is free right now when you sign up for my newsletter.

This recipe was created by my friend Melanie, and le's be honest, getting more veggies into our family is a good thing.  Veggies are more cost effective than meat and are loaded with antioxidants and vitamins and minerals.

Ingredients:
 
½ cup balsamic vinegar
3 cloves garlic peeled and minced 
1 ½ tbsp minced rosemary
1 ½ tbsp minced thyme 
Salt and pepper to taste
2 bell peppers (colour is your choice), seeded and cut into 1-inch pieces
1 pint grape or cherry tomatoes
2 medium zucchinis (1 green and 1 yellow), cut into 1-inch rounds 
1 medium red onion, peeled and cut into large chunks
 
Soak bamboo skewers in water for 30 minutes or use metal skewers.
Combine the balsamic vinegar, garlic, rosemary, thyme and salt and pepper in a small bowl.
Skewer the vegetables, alternating between different coloured vegetables.
Place the skewers on the grill and cook, brushing the vegetables with the vinegar mix and turning every 4-5 minutes, until the vegetables are tender, 12 – 15 minutes.
Monday, 08 January 2018 17:59

Balance

An Individualized Lifestyle Program to help you balance your hormones and lose weight effortlessly.

Are you tired of the dieting roller coaster? Unsure of what works and what doesn't? Learn how to eat right for your body and end the diet roller coaster. You don't need to purchase expensive shakes or ready made high protein foods to lose weight, you need to eat real whole foods in the correct amounts for your body. Fat loss is not always linear, and a Nutritionist will help you understand what is going on in your body instead of drastically reducing your calories. Sustainable weight loss is not a drastic amount of weight lost in the first month.  This program is for those who aren't interested in the gimmicks, the endless slew of unnecessary fat burners, caffeine pills and fibre pills.  My ideal client has had enough of the yo-yo dieting and is ready to rebalance their hormones, heal their digestion and get to the root of why they can't lose the weight.

Book your free 30-minute consult to learn more. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  Private Sessions are available at this time.  Groups can be arranged for 3 or more people.

  • Learn about nutrition and what your body needs to be optimally healthy. 
  • Learn the necessary steps and tools to balance your blood sugar and hormones.
  • Receive a personalized plan based on your age, weight, height and activity level
  • Receive supporting documents:  manuals and recipe book
  • Unlimited email support
  • 10 Weekly 45 minute consults in person or online
  • Food Tracker Guidance and Support 

Book your free 30-minute assessment today to learn more about my programs

Private Sessions available in person or online.

 

 

Sunday, 13 March 2016 14:57

Stir-Fry with Vegetables and Chicken

A stir fry is a quick and healthy dinner you can make any night of the week with any combination of vegetables and/or meat you prefer.  My daughter has braces, so eating veggies that have been cooked are easier for her to chew.  A stir fry will leave a little crunch left in your veggies so the nutritional content is higher.  Be sure to fully cook your meat first however.
 
Cauliflower pieces
Broccoli pieces including the stem
Celery, sliced
Carrots, sliced
Zucchini, sliced
Mushrooms, sliced
Tomatoes, quartered
Peppers, sliced in strips
Onions, sliced
Edible-podded peas (optional)
Chicken breasts, steamed
 
The quantity of each ingredient depends on the number of people to be served.  A heavy cast iron frying pan or a wok should be used.  Sautè in butter or coconut oil. using medium heat, any combination or all of the listed vegetables.  Begin by cooking the vegetables that take longer to tenderize (carrots, cauliflower, broccoli).  After a few minutes, add the rest of vegetables, except the tomatoes.  Turn heat to simmer, cover pan or wok, and cook until all vegetables are barely tender.  Add tomatoes and cook about 1 minute longer.  Season with salt and pepper.  Add prepared chicken and serve piping hot.
 
Preparation of meat:  Stem chicken until tender.  Remove skin and bones.  Cut in large chunks.  Brown in a separate pan in butter.  Set aside until you are ready to combine with vegetables.
 
Thursday, 03 March 2016 21:01

Amy

Just wanted to let you know my bloodwork was perfect this time ---- my cholesterol was reduced back to a normal range and my iron has increased since taking the iron pills.

and I confirmed that I will NOT have to take blood pressure medication!!!

love it :)

Amy

Monday, 29 February 2016 20:37

Sweet & Salty Energy Bites

I love making healthy treats, and the combination of sweet and salty in these little energy bites is addictive!  If you are allergic to nuts, you can always substitute seed butters like pumpkin or sunflower, and substitute seeds for anywhere nuts are called for.  In this case I used hemp seeds, but you could use crushed walnuts, cashews or almonds.  I had a hard time narrowing down the recipe for these because as you know, I like to just wing it in the kitchen.  If they are too wet, add more dry ingredients.  

Sweet & Salty Energy Bites

  • 1 cup all natural peanut butter  (any nut butter or seed butter will do)
  • 1 cup dates 
  • 1/4 cup of unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1/4 cup of sesame seeds
  • 1 1/2 cups of quick cooking oats
  • 1/2 cup of chocolate chips
  • 1/4 cup of dried cranberries
  • 2 heaping tbsp of cocoa powder
  • 2 tsp of cinnamon
  • 1/2 - 1 tbsp of ground sea salt

Soak the dates in just enough water to cover the dates.  When softened, mix in a food processor till blended.  Add in the peanut butter, cinnamon, cocoa and sea salt and mix together.

If you want the chocolate chips broken up a little, add them in and pulse the mixture a few times.

Remove the blade and stir in the remaining ingredients.  When the ingredients are fully mixed, roll into 1 inch size balls and place on a cookie sheet.  You may chill the balls for 20 minutes, then transfer them to a container with a lid.  They will stay well in the fridge for a couple weeks.  But, they won't last that long.