She Has Outlived Three Vegans!

G’Mom Dynamite is 83!!   In the morning, she enjoys her duo of a cup of freshly ground Joe with her smokes. Like, a hot apple a la mode served with creamy vanilla bean ice-cream, the two pair nicely. When she gets up in the morning, I encourage her to pick something healthy to eat.  I make sure I keep her favorite fruits on hand.  But, at her age, who am I to tell her what to eat, how often, and how much to eat?

Regardless of her 60+ year relationship with non-filtered cigarettes and Gin (the 70’s), old Grand Dad (the 80’s-90’s),  or Hennessy (late 90’s to present), she is still alive and kicking.  I may live a healthy lifestyle but there is still no guarantee that I will live age 83.

Medication for high blood pressure doesn’t stir her to read labels or to give up her prepackaged high sodium favorites like this Spicy Miso Ramen Noodle Soop! 920 grams of sodium per serving! Holy cow!  Yuck!!  But I see her point that she’s lived through eight decades.

My mom has outlived three vegetarians in our family, who never drank, smoked, or ate any form of meat or seafood.

Lol! It’s funny but not really. I miss my cousins and aunts.  But I see her point.  Take my beautiful cousin Marlene for example. RIP cuz.   She lived a clean life but died in her early 40’s while battling breast cancer. I respect my mother’s point-of-view but continue to encourage her to make healthy food

LOOK AT THE SODIUM!!!! 

choices.  When she talks about dying, which is often and I say, “While you are living, let’s focus on quality of life.”  She responds,  “Tanya, you can’t live forever!!  She looks at me and cracks up laughing!   I join in with her laughter and know that, for the most part, I am wasting my time.

Seriously I contribute mom’s longevity to her upbringing.  Mom and her siblings were poor. They ate fresh everything!  My grandmother managed the family’s health with natural herbs like goldenseal, poke root, catnip, dandelion, fennel, nettle, and more.  I’m not talking about the stuff in a bottle. I’m speaking of the plants, roots, and grounded powder versions. The grandkids in my generation helped momma make capsules for the family.  They never ate out in restaurants, drank soda, cool aid, or any of that. Their eggs came from farm raised, grass fed chickens. The well water they drank was fresh and wasn’t contaminated by the chemicals that taint our current water supplies. Life and the food supply was simpler.

As I was about to leave for work the other day, I noticed her morning snack before breakfast: grapes and apples! I didn’t say a word but could not help smiling and chuckling. When she turned her back, I snapped a quick picture!!  Lol!! Hmm… maybe she is listening.

Her snack made my day! ūüôā

Take care of yourself in 2017!

 

 

Why You Should Read Food Labels

The packaging and labeling of food items is a business. ¬†It is in fact–my opinion– a business that motivates consumer behavior. ¬†Package coloring, size, graphics, and terminology will either make you or a child take a second look or scowl and turn away.

The most savvy and educated consumer is capable of falling into the trap of buying what “looks” healthy.

Even more so now since my figure competition training has started, I carefully–or so I thought– read the food labels on mostly everything I buy.

On Friday, I ran into a local wholesale food store to buy two rotisserie chickens. Thursday night my family ate the (my) remaining “protein” meat source. Friday is an off night for cooking, so I needed to buy something that was already cooked.

Friday nights must be a popular rotisserie chicken night, because only one was left at four something in the afternoon. ¬†I waited a few short minutes to get the second bird that wasn’t made “natural.” But that wasn’t an issue for me.

Here’s the label:

Looks Good!

Looks Good!

Looks good right!

Gluten Free
No MSG
No Hormones or Steroids Added
No Antibiotics Ever
All Vegetarian Diet
No Animal By-Products
Minimal Processed
No Artificial Ingredients Added

No Antibiotics

Minimally Processed

The packing is even “Eco-Friendly”

EcoFriendly

Before I carved my six and half ounces of chicken on my plate, I pulled the skin and any remnants of fat off.

As I’m getting my grub on, the package is in my eye shot range and I happen to see the “Nutrition Facts.” Holy Moly!!

Look at the the Sodium!

Look at the the Sodium!

I’m cool with everything except the SODIUM counts. 490 MG per 3 oz. serving!! That means I wolfed down 1,125 (6 1/2 oz.) of sodium with just the chicken. ¬†Okay… wait!

I read the ingredients. The first three read, “Chicken, Water, Sea Salt…” Hello! ¬†There’s your sodium amounts girl! ¬†Sodium chloride, salt, or sodium, it is all the same! ¬†Too much is not good for the body.

Well… I did pull the skin off. But still. During the cooking time, the sea salt that coated the chicken’s skin, was baked in and absorbed into the chicken. So how much sodium did I actually consume, I don’t know.

What I do know is that I probably won’t buy this again. The other bird, from a different company had equal amounts of sodium.

So what’s the big deal about sodium? ¬†Stay with me….

The Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend limiting sodium to less than 2,300 mg a day ‚ÄĒ or 1,500 mg if you’re age 51 or older, or if you are black, or if you have high blood pressure, diabetes or chronic kidney disease.* ¬†(I consumed nearly half the dietary guidelines in one sitting.)

Sodium cannot and should not be completely eliminated from the body.  Many of the naturals foods that we eat contain smaller amounts of sodium.  However, the American Heart Association reports that,

Cardiovascular diseases are the leading cause of death worldwide, and high blood pressure is a major risk factor. In some people, sodium increases blood pressure because it holds excess fluid in the body, creating an added burden on the art.  Too much sodium in the diet may also have other harmful health effects, including increased risk for stoke, heart failure, osteoporosis, stomach cancer and kidney disease. 

Studies have proven that high blood pressure and heart disease can be heredity.  Add the genetic predisposition to the disease and you have a recipe for disaster.

Whether you are trying to fit into your size 8 jeans, look stunning for your wedding, look hot on the beach, run a marathon, just get into shape, or something else, it is important to read food labels and educate yourself on the foods you put into your body.

We’re only given one body in this life, so why not treat it like a king or queen that it so greatly deserves.

Have a great day and remember to keep it movin!

Sources and Additional Reading

Mayo Clinic

The American Heart Association