Carolyn Chaffey

When searching for a particular diet what I'm finding is that almost all of the diets allow you to eat "as much as you want" of a certain food group. The Atkins Diet says as much meat as you can eat is OK, Eat To Live says "eat a BIG salad" but limit other things. It appears that we all want a diet that lets us eat a LOT of some food, big helpings to satisfy our need to over eat.

In spending time thinking about how diets work(or don't work) I've come to the conclusion it's because they do not help us deal with the thoughts that are in our mind that say we need to eat a large quantity of food to be happy and satisfied. There is no way around it. We need to eat less food. If we cannot get our mind around that idea and then do things to reprogram the messages of excess we've been given over the years, we will fail over and over again at having a healthy relationship to our food.

Upon reading the book French Women Don't Get Fat I've discovered that the general culture frowns upon over-eating. Servings are much smaller and often people leave much of it on their plate. I remember years ago going to a very nice "fine-dining" restaurant and having my then husband complain about the size of the servings. However, we both left that restaurant quite satisfied after several courses. A small salad, a small entree meal, cheese and dessert. Very small servings of absolutely delicious food! And of course a glass of wine. We were satisfied and happy. The food, the experience, all were very positive. And no all you can eat buffet! Who would have thought.

When I think back to that meal I understand, what we need to do is find absolutely the highest quality food, eat small amounts of it slowly and enjoy it immensely.

I believe if we go back to the time of the depression we can gain an understanding of what makes us as North Americans want more food than our body needs. We were raised by children of the depression with an understanding that we have to eat all we can now while it's here because the depression left many of our parents and grandparents fearful of starving again. I certainly see that with my mother in law who grew up in depression ravaged Saskatchewan. Encouraging the children to finish all their dinner or they'll get no dessert, to eat as much as possible is certainly how she was raised. She is very moderate in her own eating however and I notice how small her servings are. She often doesn't finish all the food on her plate yet somehow feels the children should. I wonder how much she realises what she's doing.

I've made an effort to make reasonable size portions and to stop when I'm full and satisfied. I've found it's easier for me to put smaller amounts on my plate to start with and go back for a bit more if I'm not quite full than to have the food on my plate. That's when I end up over-stuffed.

I'm also making an effort to moderate the language I use with my children. I talk about being satisfied, rather than full, I do not make dessert contingent upon an empty plate and it's not a reward for a job well done eating, but rather just a part of the meal. My daughter who has the larger appetite does not eat many vegetables but she eats a lot of fruit and I let it go. My daughter who has a small appetite eats vegetables but only picks at her meals. She loves her ice cream for dessert however really doesn't like other sweets such as candy. She will eat a chocolate chip cookie.

What I do notice with both of them is they will leave ice cream in the dish when they are full, the will leave half the cookie behind. They are self-regulating their portions and that makes me happy.

As part of my growth in this journey to understanding my goal is to stop the pattern of disordered eating I'm seeing in myself at me. I will teach my children differently and help them understand, their body knows what it needs, to listen to it and to eat a comfortable amount of food that doesn't stretch and distend but rather fills and satisfies. And that high quality foods make this easier to accomplish.

Affirmation: I now only put superior fresh, seasonal food into my body, in amounts that satisfy me physically.



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Carolyn Chaffey

My sugar cravings are gone. I won't go as far as to say I'll never eat sugar again however, as of this moment, I could take it or leave it and I'm choosing to leave it. A few weeks ago I wouldn't have even thought it was possible with careful planning and several deliberate steps I've managed to do it! The feeling of being free from cravings is incredible and one moment at a time, with mindful choices I'll remain sugar-free. I have had little to no refined sugar for about a month now and I feel absolutely no desire for any. Yes, that is a short period of time however what is different is how I feel. Physically I feel balanced and healthy. Emotionally and mentally, I've had the best premenstrual and menstrual cycle in a long time, minimal bloating, almost zero mood swings and minimal cramping.

There were several steps I took to get to this point.

1. I used an hypnosis mp3 download for weight loss from hypnotransformations. I use this regularly, it's for weight loss but I believe it still worked on this specific thing. I will continue to use it as I clean up my diet further in my goal to achieve optimal health and weight.

2. I prepared my mind before hand. I knew it would be tough and I knew I would be tempted so I went moment by moment. I didn't plan to do it forever, I still don't say I will never have sugar, I don't want deprivation to enter into my mind, so I can have sugar, but each day I chose not to. This has worked to help me defy myself because many of us crave things we "can't" have so by allowing and choosing instead of denying it helps us with that psychological hurdle.

3. I ate fruit. I gave up refined sugar only. I didn't use artificial sweeteners at all because I feel they are more harmful than sugar and keep you craving. I found a banana muffin recipe that used honey and I've made those twice however I haven't found that I crave for them particularly. I also cut out white flour at the same time, replacing it with whole wheat or other whole grain, this was accidental though because I discovered most(all?) bread without sugar are made with whole grains and are white-flour free.

4. I don't feel as though it's a diet. I feel it is more along the lines of beating an addiction so I look at it as doing something positive for myself similar to quitting smoking. I don't feel deprived at all however the need to stuff myself with a dessert at the end of a very filling meal has vanished.

5. I changed my thoughts from "I deserve a treat" to "I deserve a body that is healthy". This too cut out the idea of deprivation and worked with my psyche to reassure me I was allowed, I was just making a different choice today.

6. I did a fast for one week that didn't allow for any food consumption after sunset until sunrise. This was a great tool for getting rid of the night time baked-goods craving as I had two reasons, not just one, for not giving into the cravings. The fast was a spiritual fast where I spent time doing yoga and meditation and writing. It was very beneficial and very easy to do as I ate well all day but stopped just after 6:30pm every night.

7. I drank tons of fluid, but only herbal tea and water. I got as much sleep as I could.

8. When the cravings got tough I ate two slices of whole grain, sugar free bread with fruit. It got me through but now I don't do this. I still eat it but it's just a meal, not a way to beat sugar cravings.

8. I decided. And I keep deciding every day, that I won't have refined sugar. I remember watching an interview with Robert Downey Junior who battled drug addiction for so long but who seems to be very successful in beating it in the past few years. He was asked what the difference was this time as opposed to all the other times he'd tried and he said that this time he "decided" to do it. Previously he hadn't made the decision. He knew he should, he wanted to, he intended to, but he hadn't decided to. So yes, you have to make a definite, realistic decision to do this in order to have success.

I am very proud to have done this, even for just a month. I am doing it again today and tomorrow I plan on deciding to do it again. I try not to think beyond that because who knows what the future will bring.

I do know that if I can do it anyone can. Decide to do it, pick a date and go forward. It is possible and the health benefits cannot be underestimated. I feel better and things are clearer now.

Affirmation: Anything I choose to do I can do if I decide to do it.



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Carolyn Chaffey

I am way overdue for an update. As I go along, still sugar-free, I'm noticing some things. First of all, I believe I had, what I would call, a reaction to some sugar. I baked some banana muffins that called for honey. I only gave up refined sugar and so I thought, why not? Well after being out all day and getting home, very hungry, I ate two of them. Later I became very ill. I felt as though I had a fever(I didn't) and I had to go lay down and cover for a while. I also felt cold, shakey and it took me a long while to warm back up. This feeling only happened once and only after I ate the muffins. Maybe I shouldn't have had two(actually, definitely I shouldn't have) however I felt so hungry I just did it. I won't do that again! If I decide to eat sugar of any kind, I will be more moderate, start out slowly.

Beyond that, today was the first day I've felt even remotely any craving for sugar. And it was mild. As a woman I also have to say, premenstrual symptoms were minimal and that is a very pleasant change. I am making another assumption here when I say this craving might be related to hormonal changes. If so, things certainly have changed in that regard!

As I mentioned in a previous post, I've been reading "French Women Don't Get Fat" and I've taken to adopting some of the methods set out in the book. One things I've started doing is making my eating into more of an event. Today I set out my bread, cheese, sliced orange and some berries on a plate and my fifteen year old daughter said "That looks so professional" and it did! It looked as though it had been prepared at a restaurant. I like the idea of using nice plates and setting the food on the plate in an appetising manner. We are blessed to have good food and enjoying it as an occasion makes it feel like more of a gift.

It feels odd, I hope the feeling lasts but this is the most normal I've ever felt. I don't obsess about what I eat, I know if I want something I can have it and I am just choosing not to.

For anyone out there trying to quit sugar, here is a tip. Eat a bit more bread. I have a slice of a whole grain, sugar-free bread with fruit and it satisfied me until I got past the first few days of cravings. I no longer do that because I am not craving sugar right now. Let me clarify, I still eat it, but not for that reason, I eat it now simply because it's what I like to eat at times.

Affirmation: I eat a limited amount of sugar daily. I no longer crave sugar and I now can do without it except for very special occasions and enjoy unrefined sweets instead of refined white sugar as a treat.





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Carolyn Chaffey

In the previous posts I have posted mainly about the spiritual fast I have undertaken and it is going well. Meanwhile, before I started the fast I had already spent several days without refined sugar in my diet. I still have not had refined sugar to any degree other than a little that was listed way down on the ingredient list on a frozen pizza I had on Mother's day.

I'm not sure I believe in the idea of sugar addiction in the sense of it being a traditional addiction. I believe, for me, I just really like the taste of sweet, baked goods and have trouble regulating. I guess it's more of a compulsive eating, maybe even a compulsive eating disorder.

I cannot think that I will never have a sweet baked item and know that when I'm ready I will eat some baked goods. I am however searching for recipes that use less refined sources and I will avoid those that have sugar as the base of the recipe.

I'm counting on the hypnotherapy to reprogram my mind so that when I'm ready I can reintroduce some treats back into my diet.

Now, let's get back to how it's been going for me, personally, without sugar.

I haven't noticed any terrible side-affects or withdrawal from lack of sugar. I have been careful to eat some perfect, natural sugar foods such as fruit and berries and sweet vegetables. I truly cannot believe that this is not a positive thing for health and I am not necessarily moderate in my consumption of these foods. My breakfast has consisted of orange, peeled and sliced, several strawberries, raspberries, and two slices of a whole grain bread with butter. Last night I had pears poached in burgundy wine and sprinkled with pumpkin pie spice, strawberries, raspberries, and several pieces of cheese. There is not hardship in this way of eating. In fact I've taken to arranging my food attractively on a plate so that I feel rather decadent and special. Deprivation is the enemy of healthy eating and I refuse to partake in it.

There have been some physical changes that have been positive. First of all my exzema on my ankles has all but gone. This may be due to having less sugar of the seasonal change, either way it's minimal right now. I also was sleeping really well due to the consumption of a certain tea. Until a few nights ago I tried a different brand and it didn't work as well. So I am back to the original brand today.

The most positive aspect of this experiment has been that the sugar cravings have almost completely subsided. Yes, I'm eating fruit which has a sweet element, but I don't crave them and I didn't finish the pears even, but it still amazes me that I'm not craving a cookie or a donut. I certainly did the first three nights. Somehow after the third night the cravings subsided drastically and haven't really returned.

I am playing it by intuition. I feel I will know when I am able to reintroduce small amounts of refined sugar back into my diet however I'm not there yet. I believe at this point it would lead to a tumble back to the beginning when the sugar cravings were at an all time high, the compulsive eating would return and I would need to start over.

Meanwhile I listened to my hypnosis recording this morning before I got up and I'm ready for another day of healthy eating.



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This morning for some reason I woke early. 4:30am to be precise and finally got out of bed at 5:00am. I broke the fast in that I decided to have my morning coffee. I probably got a maximum of five hours sleep, not nearly enough for the day. I did some yoga, took a shower and just finished a beautiful breakfast, a two-egg omellette with feta cheese and shallots, whole-grain bread with butter and a bowl of raspberries, out of season but still juicy and delicious.

I'm not sure how this day will play out. I have some appointments this morning but this afternoon is clear. I doubt I will walk today, the rain is heavy and it's not supposed to stop until this evening, hopefully before my daughter's soccer game.

The morning is interesting. I decided, since I was awake, and not being a morning person, that I would work hard to enjoy and appreciate the opportunity to be in one, alone and quiet. A thunderstorm boomed in the distance and I watched the lightening show through my window. The winds shot horizontal rain across west to east giving me a nice visual effect. After the rain let up and the winds ceased to an eerie calm, the robins invaded my front lawn for a morning meal, fresh and clean, they pecked and left, at least a dozen at any given time. They were a joy to watch although I did feel sad for the worms.

I'll get ready for the day now, content, awake, peaceful, not a morning person but blessed with the morning. It gave me great joy to watch the sunrise and not because it signalled that it was time to eat, and in fact I didn't eat until a good hour after it rose, but because I rarely get to see one, and this one was pretty perfect.

I wrote about it here if you're inclined to travel to another page.

Affirmation: This is the day I've been given. I will accept all the pleasures it offers me in gratitude and want for nothing.

Namaste



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Carolyn Chaffey

Today I started to reread the book "French Women Don't Get Fat"
I had read it a few years ago but took the time to read it today, not as a dieter, but as a study in a culture that doesn't have the problem with weight that our North American culture has.

It truly is cultural. There is a lot of detail but several things jump out at me. The French love food. They adore it. It's the most important thing culturally to be able to enjoy the pleasure of food. But, and it's a big but, they eat small amounts of really high quality food. Very little processed, rich with flavour, not fat, they know culturally, as a people who to make simple and rich and they no when to savour a bite and move on. They never stuff themselves and they allow themselves a lot of pleasure and then compensate by walking longer distances. They self-regulate their appetite with their activity and they do it naturally, the don't do gyms much, generally they walk and enjoy the pleasure of it. They raise their children the same way.

The second thing that stood out to me is the idea that dieting isn't discussed. It's just not something you talk about. You eat what you feel like eating, regulate your exercise to accommodate and you learn how do do this from birth.

There is no emotional attachment to food. The French eat for pure pleasure to satisfy hunger, not to deal with emotions or boredom.

They generally learn as a culture how to eat in season, fresh picked, highly flavourful food, they even have gourmet sparkling water, finding our north American water bland. Like the wine they enjoy with dinner, they are water connoisseurs as well. I was amazed at this, although I do enjoy certain water better than others, fortunately right now our filtered tap water is very tasty.

They avoid junk food, their sweets are generally baked pastries, cakes and cookies and they develop a taste for dark chocolate early on.

To get to the mindset of the French culture and their attitudes towards food is likely the ideal. Quality, fresh, in season foods in small amounts and adequate exercise. No punishment, just compensation. No guilt, just guilt-free pleasure. No weight loss groups, just the ability to self-regulate.

This book is a good read. It's not the entire answer but it is a good insight into the thinking of a culture who seems to have a healthy mindset about food, never feel deprived and yet, stay thin somehow. Worth a look.

As to me, I am feeling a bit like I'm getting a cold. It's spring so it may be mild allergy symptoms. It may be not eating after sunset which took place precisely at 6:33pm. I finished my dinner at 6:25 so I'm less hungry now at bedtime. I felt less likely to want to eat anything tonight. Interesting, I didn't really notice I hadn't eaten anything until I started to write about it.


.


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Fasting sucks! Actually, it's not that bad, but it's really strange. I thought this was an easy way out, the easiest way to fast, I can pretty much eat what I want all day as long as it's whole and healthy and today instead of the chili again(which was delicious by the way) I thought I would make my very favourite Honey Baked Lentils. I discovered this dish at the Mothering Magazine forums where I am a moderator. One of my co-moderators created it and it's one of the favourites and well known throughout the community.

Now, remember my post about sugar addiction? Well several days before the fast I decided to give up sugar. So my evenings were consumed with the desire for a sweet treat however now, here I sit craving for honey-baked lentils. I haven't eaten since 5:30 pm, early as sunset wasn't until 6:32pm today. But the kids had soccer so what do you do? It's after 10pm and under normal circumstances I would have eaten a load of snacks by now. I'll get through. I'm having a nice cup of my usual bedtime tea.

On the spiritual side of things I did some yoga this morning. I use the Yogamazing podcasts that you can get free at the iTunes store and did about 20 minutes of a cleansing flow. It was really nice however my computer froze near the end so it sort of interrupted the final part however it was beautiful. I walked twice, the first time I listened to an audiobook as I walked and the second time I made sure I was fully engaged with the children. We walked to soccer and that was a practice in patience.

Patience. Yes, that seems to be a quality I'm lacking these past few days. I am noticing some irritability. The problem with being an emotional eater and using food as a crutch is that when you no longer have the crutch you have to deal with the emotions. That's why I feel it's imperative that any changes in diet should be accompanied by a change in all aspects of life. If you are happier and joyful in other ways you will not need to find happiness and joy in a cookie(or a bag of cookes, because one cookie doesn't do the damage, it's the accumulation of years of cookies).

As I go along, five more days of this practice in discipline and mindfulness, I'm hoping that this will be a catalyst to further growth in all areas, including diminishing the negative thoughts about food that I've been entrenched in all these years.

Namaste



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Carolyn Chaffey

As I recently wrote about, I have embarked on a spiritual-fast. A period of seven days of eating only from sunrise to sunset. This is not a "diet" of any kind but rather an exercise in spiritual development. During this time I will engage in silence, yoga, meditative walking, cooking and eating. Today I did my first meditative cooking which involves simply having silence and being mindful of the food you prepare. I would like to describe the process below.

I decided that I would make a healthy soup out of whole vegetables. Something to support me nutritionally and make the fasting hours easier to take. I noticed a can of kidney beans however and instead of the white bean vegetable soup I had originally started to make I decided upon a vegetarian chili. The following is a description of the process of cooking, mindfully.

I felt the texture of the mushrooms under the cold water as I washed them, I brush them with the brush I use for this. I notice the smoothness of them, round and firm, a spongelike texture and notice there is little difference between the brown and white. Mushrooms have an odour that is hard to describe. It's an empty odour, not robust like garlic or onion, rather plain and dour, yet there. I likewise rinse the red and yellow peppers noticing how slippery their skins are. The tomatoes feel dusty from sitting in the fruit bowl and I scrub them gently, leaving all the vegetables to dry on a green plaid tea towel. They look fresh and apetizing and I start to enjoy the process.

It is completely silent as I rinse the beans and I think of how fortunate I am for such beautiful food to prepare. I give a silent gratitude to the universe for allowing me this food.

I pull some basil and oregano out of my little indoor herb garlic and notice the fresh pungent smell. I chop them together, the odour of basil and oregano together is one of my favourite food smells, alone they each are wonderful, together they smell like life.

As I throw everything slowly, meditatively into my snow white ceramic crock pot I notice how the colours blend to a rich natural raw looking earthy tone, some brown red, green and yellow blend to become a meal of optimum nutrition. It feels good knowing I've made something from the earth. As I add chili powder, sea salt and pepper I note how yet again the colours change, the appearance of the food is evolving from individual foods to a conglomerate of fantastic colours, textures and smells. I understand why people become chefs if they feel this way about cooking regularly!

As the pot cooks the smell permeates the house. After returning from picking up my youngest daughter from her one hour visit to kindergarten, i walk into the pleasure of that delicious smell. The beauty of the crock pot is that you are tempted by the flavour of the meal the entire day until it is finished cooking. I feel good knowing no creatures of the earth were harmed during my meal preparation and that feeds my soul as much as the food I prepare will nourish my body. I take a small bite and sample the food and turn the pot to low. It is fantastic, delicious and will get better as it slow-cooks. I will eat it with a multi grain wholesome bread and cold ice water.

Many of us only pay surface attention to what we do but when we practice being mindful of the texture of our lives suddenly we become enveloped in a bright light of knowledge and awareness. Taking the time to be mindful as probably been the single greatest accent to my life. I can use the practice at any time to enhance my life and my creativity. As I go through these seven days of exploration I will utilixe this practice more and more in doing simple basic life work, like cooking, walking and eating.

Affirmation: I will take time to enjoy food preparation and be grateful that I have wholesome fresh food available to me.

Namaste





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Carolyn Chaffey

Today at sunrise I began a spiritual fast. Almost all religions of the world have fasting as a part of their practice. Christianity has Lent, Islam has Ramadan and so on. As part of the fasting process I will be exploring several of these practices over the course of the seven days of my fast.

I've decided on a seven day, sunset to sunrise fast. I am doing this completely for spiritual reasons, to see, experimentally, what benefit such a practice can be for someone who is attempting spiritual growth.

It is recommended that during the time of fasting a person should spend extra time in spiritual oneness and I'll be practicing meditation and yoga daily. I will also take a time each day to declutter something in my home, a suggested practice that symbolised the decluttering of the spirit as you rid yourself of the cluttered thoughts through meditation. This is a spring renewal for me as I try to be free of the sugar cravings that plague me. I plan on moving forward into further dietary cleansing in the future but one small change at a time.

As to the sugar addiction, This is the beginning of the 4th day and other than a little wine yesterday I've been avoiding sugar. It became easier once I found an organic, sugar free, additive free, whole grain bread to eat. My eventual goal is to rid myself of white flour eventually and it's kind of happening by accident as I am learning that often bread products that are sugar-free are white flour-free as well. Sugar cravings have subsided quite a bit and I hope the purchase of a nice chai tea yesterday will help keep me craving-free for the seven days of the fast.

Affirmation: As I enter into a time of spiritual fasting I will learn to enjoy and appreciate the amount of food available to me and understand that I have an abundance of good wholesome, body positive foods available and that I may eat as much of it as I wish. I choose to only eat the amounts needed for body nourishment however.


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As of late I've been considering a fast. I have had mixed feelings in attempting this although my research is helping me come to the conclusion that there really is some benefit to fasting with certain conditions. To fast as a means of weightloss is detrimental in that likely, when it's at the end of the fast, you will fall into feast mode physcially and mentally. When you feel deprived you likely will make up the deprivation with plenty.

As someone who has never fasted it seems that I should come to this for reasons that are true and of benefit to my spirit as well as my body. I also think it should be quick and incomplete, in that I don't completely give up food. I've I have done some research and feel it is of benefit to attempt one of these three methods of fasting.

Dawn to dusk fast for seven days. I will not consume solid foods, simply freshly made juice and water from sunrise to sunset. I will end the day with a nutritious and simple meal. This type of fasting is very common amongst religious groups and likely one of the easier ones to carry out.

Twenty-four hour juice fast. This is exactly as it says, no solid foods for 24 hours. Then at the end begin a new cycle of eating.

Twelve hour dusk to dawn fast. Eat or drink only during daylight hours and fast for 12 hours after dinner. The food consumed during the daylight hours is raw/steamed and vegetarian.


These are the three fasts I've considered. I will be starting the third tomorrow as I feel it is the one that will be easiest for me. I will do it for 7 days starting at sunrise tomorrow. According to my research I am to go by the sunrise, sunset for my area. If you have ever fasted what have your results been like? How did it go for you.

This is day three of being sugar-free. It's the easiest day so far although I did have a little glass of red wine with my mother's day dinner. And I couldn't find a pizza without sugar in the ingredients somewhere...it was way down on the list in the pizza I chose but I was determined I wasn't cooking today!

So tomorrow I start my spiritual fast. It will begin with meditation and sun salutations in the morning and light food all day. It will end each day at sunset. I will spend extra time in consideration of spiritual matters and in clearing out and starting over. After this week I may try a week of the opposite fast.

Affirmation: As part of a new spiritual rebirth I will eat cleansing whole foods with the daylight and fast for 12 hours with the moon. I do this for health, well being and spiritual growth.



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Yesterday was my first sugar-free day. It was difficult and I did find myself craving for sugar at the end of the day. I had a helping of the Honey Baked Lentils to get me through then drank water. I was grateful to fall into bed, the first day a success. One day at a time is how I plan on taking this.

I've been looking into fasting. I'm not sure if it's beneficial as all the proponents of the practice say or if it's unhealthy. I don't feel the least bit inclined to purchase a "cleanse" package but there is something about a 24 hour juice fast that appeals to me. Also, a sunrise to sunset fast has a certain appeal as well. I have to do more research into whether the benefits outweigh the risks of such practice although it has been done to some degree since the dawn of time, but is there really a benefit to depriving oneself purposefully of solid healthy food? I'd love to hear your thoughts on this.

Meanwhile I want to share a recipe with you. This is a simple recipe that I found in the Foodland Ontario recipe book at our local grocery store. They have other recipes there as well.


Veggie and Asparagus Salad

Dressing: 1/2 cup plain yogurt
1/2 cup finely chopped cucumber
1tbsp chili sauce(I used my sister in laws homemade..yummy)
1tsp finely chopped onion
1/4 tsp each of dried oregano, salt and pepper(original recipe also called for 1/4 tsp sugar, I have made it both ways, don't need it)
1 clove garlic mixed

Combine all ingredients and set aside. (I think this would be fine with silken tofu for the vegans).

Salad: 3 cups lettuce(I used green leaf and red leaf, Boston is good too)
8 oz asparagus grilled and cut into bite sized pieces
1 cup thinly sliced mushrooms
1-2 tomatoes, cut in wedges
half each red and orange sweet peppers slivered.

Grill Asparagus...toss with a little extra virgin olive oil, season with salt and pepper(I use steak spice) and grill about 5 minutes until tender-crisp. You can also broil on a baking sheet in the oven for about 4 minutes. Cut in pieces.

Toss with dressing.

This makes too much for me so I just use what I need. Everything keeps nicely(untossed) in the refridgerator.

Enjoy!

Affirmation: I do not need refined sugar in my diet and although I may eat it whenever I want I choose not to today.
Namaste`

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Is there such a thing? I believe that we can become, as human beings, addicted to anything. Whether it's psychological or physical or a combination, I'm unsure of the physiological aspects of it. I do know that I hear a lot of people say they have a sugar addiction so if they are identifying with that and it's true for them I will not argue that. The problem occurs when we use the "addiction" as a reason that we must continue on the same destructive path. People often beat addictions, I've known many recovering and sober alcholics and people also overcome drug addictions,even the worse ones like crack cocaine. Easy, no, possible, absolutely.

And on a personal level I do understand is that addiction can be overcome. I know I can overcome addiction because I have in the past. I've given up smoking. I've also in recent months found the motivation to quit artificial sweeteners which was difficult in lieu of my relationship with diet pop. But it's gone and I very much doubt that I will ever taste aspartame or splenda again.

For all of the things I have given up I've been able to find compelling overwhelming reasons, health reasons, to do so. In the past I have a lot of trouble reconciling that sugar has to be banished from life and I also have trouble reconciling that I will never get to have a cookie or cake or anything like that without experiencing extreme deprivation emotions. Is this addiction?

More recently, I am starting to encounter some compelling reasons to drastically reduce the amount of refined white sugar I'm consuming. A new book called "Skinny Bitch" has fascinating and compelling arguments for a very clean, very low-sugar diet and I have trouble not agreeing with everything written in the book about keeping sugar intake below 15g per day. Where my trouble begins is in actually doing it.

But I've decided that I do need to drastically reduce the amount of refined sugar I consume. One day at a time, starting today, I'm removing it from my diet completely. I no longer crave cigarettes because I gave them up, one day at a time, I no longer crave diet pop, because I gave it up in a similar fashion. Is it possible that I can give up refined sugar and eventually get to this same place without the feelings of deprivation I think I'll experience? I think the answer is yes.

I will never know until I try though. I will retain honey in my diet for now. Natural unrefined, raw honey in small amounts. I will also eat fruit, again, natural source sugar.

So one day at a time I'm going to remove the sugar. I'll keep you apprised of the journey. I'll be honest and straightforward. I'll rant and rave to you as I go through the withdrawal, but I hope you bear with me until I get to the point where it's no longer a battle but a way of life. And if you choose, I welcome you to join me in this journey.

Affirmation: I no longer need processed sugar in my life. My body deserves the best and most natural forms of food I can give it and the gift I give it today is optimum health through natural unrefined forms of sugar.


Namaste`

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Carolyn Chaffey

I know there is a question on everybody's mind. The big question. Are you losing any weight? I should answer this for you but there is the rub. I don't know. I don't weigh. I know I'm doing all the things I should be doing. I'm listening to my weight loss hypnosis download regularly, I'm walking weather permitting, I am cooking fresh food and eating a lot of raw. I have not had a binge on anything baked although I have had these things occasionally. I've eaten ice cream but not too much and every day I feel better and better. So the answer to the big question is still, I don't know. And even more important, I'm not all that concerned about it which is an amazing shift. I am no longer preoccupied with the idea. I've let go of the need I have to lose the weight. I do feel like I'm slimmer. My clothes are starting to fit and I know my silhouette is trimmer. So that's it. No weigh ins for me, no updates, no numbers to report. All I can report is a decrease in my obsession with weight and food and an increase in my zest for life.


Affirmation
: I am happier, I am healthier, I am grateful.

Namaste

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Carolyn Chaffey

If you are not familiar with David McMahon's blog you really should take a trip over there. One of his regular features is post of the day and today I got an honourable mention! I am so flattered. I regularly check out the links because I'm lazy and he does the work for me, finding wonderful, insightful treasures in Bloggy World.

So thank you David for visiting me and honouring my brand new little blog on Post of the Day!


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Carolyn Chaffey

Today I would like to do something different. Please let me introduce you to the work of Dr. Bruce Lipton,PhD. specifically the book, The Biology of Belief. In this book Dr. Bruce Lipton, lays out, clearly and concisely, the science of epigenetics. Haven't heard of it? Don't know the term epigenetics? I am suggesting everybody will soon enough. It's exciting, relevant and ground breaking new genetic research.

Have you ever wondered why you continue in behaviours that defeat your purpose. Have you ever heard the saying "When we know better, we do better" but felt "actually, I know better but I'm doing a lot of the same things". Are you stuck? Are you perpetually climbing the same mountains, doing all sorts of self-awareness and self-help things with only minor success scaling to the top?

Do you want to know why? Do you wish to understand the reasons for your difficulties making change when consciously you are doing all you can to increase your awareness of your self-defeating behaviours?

Recently I was introduced to the work of Dr. Bruce Lipton. I downloaded his audiobook and have listened to it several times. It is a logical, well laid out, biological explanation of genetics, how our understanding of genetics as explained by the experts, has misled us. That we have control over our genetics to a degree, having the ability through our environment, to change all our genetic predispositions and in fact, that predispositions do not exist as we think they do.

I'm expecting that you will hear a lot of these ideas over the next while, that this book will be at the forefront of a cultural shift that gives us back the control of our lives by showing us what we need to be doing to facilitate growth and change in our behaviours.


Recommended reading, nay, mandatory reading, for anyone on a journey to self awareness and behaviour change. While it can directly be applied to the weightloss journey, freeing you up to finally change self-defeating actions, it also must be applied across the board to all areas of your life. Enjoy.

Available at the Breeze Daze Amazon Store or your local library.

Namaste

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Carolyn Chaffey

In googling all over the Internet, looking at the massive amounts of information that is out there about weight loss and weight control I've found that there is one aspect of the journey that is overlooked. This is something so simple, so essential and basic it really is surprising at how often it's over looked!. Are you ready? This missing link in the chain is you!

You are the one that must decide to lose weight. You are the one that must decide not to lose weight. It is your internal messages that have been hampering your success. This is not about placing blame on you, though I often say "Own your own crap". But this time it's really not all on you. The messages you have been given about thus far about weight loss and body image have all been incorrect. That's not your fault. It's the fault of a media and an industry who have let you down for the almighty dollar.

What does the diet industry have to gain if everybody suddenly found the secret to weight loss? Nothing. In fact they have a lot to lose. Money. Billions of dollars in revenue. So where is the motivation for them to have you actually succeed? Now I'm sure some weight loss programs have ideals and standards that aren't entirely revenue based. There are some that are completely non-profit. The problem is they still subscribe to the Nutrition+Exercise=weight loss formula. This formula isn't incorrect. It just misses an important aspect.

The Weighless and Weightless formula goes more like this. Nutrition+Exercise X Self Empowerment=success. I use success instead of weight loss because many people may decide they are fine with their weight. A significant number of people are overweight because they tried to lose weight when they were at a perfectly healthy size already. It's about you. If your body needs to lose excess weight to function in a healthy way then yes, the equation equals weight loss. If you decide I'm OK at this weight(no matter what the weight is) then that too is success. So even the formula is adjusted to suit you!

Success is measured differently in this formula. Success is not determined for anyone of you by the number on the scale. It involves a shift to knowing that success is how you define it and that's empowerment!

My personal definition of success is likely different then yours. Those moments when I feel I have a good and healthy relationship with food, those days when instead of battling this issue, I'm allowing myself to just be at peace with the decisions I make about food, those moments are how I measure success.

Affirmation: I will choose my own path, I will cut my own way through the forest of misinformation and I will do this through self-empowerment, knowledge, exercise and a positive self and food relationship.

Namaste

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