Dashed out the gate…but then fell HARD!

A new year is a symbol of a fresh start, new goals, and new experiences. Many of us make New Year’s resolutions with the hopes of being able to accomplish them before the year is out. Two of the most popular resolutions pertain to losing weight and becoming more healthy.

With that said, how are you guys doing on those  resolutions? Have you fallen off the wagon? Or better yet…did you even get on it to begin with? Ha! The truth is nearly 75% of us abandon our resolutions before the end of the year. Wow…talk about commitment-phobia!

And I will admit, I have been guilty of it too. But I realized that many of our health and fitness resolutions can be too ambitious and lack a realistic game plan or routine. People want fast results in a short amount of time. A side effect of living in the “instant gratification” era.

My solution: BABY STEPS! Small changes lead to big results- Start first by finding and making a small, but significant, change and gradually build on it over time.

VITAMIN RAY’S ULTIMATE BABY STEPS TO GREAT HEALTH & FITNESS IN THE NEW YEAR:

1.) Don’t cut out desserts if you love them. Instead, limit yourself to one single serving sweet treat a day. Keep it 200 calories or less (i.e. 1/2 c of ice cream or frozen yogurt, a piece of chocolate or candy, a small cookie, etc.). Eventually, you will build to replacing one or two desserts with a fruit servings.

2.) New to exercise…no problem! Do not start yourself on Arnold Schwarzenegger’s old gym routine or try to run/walk  5 miles. Start yourself off slow. Begin with engaging in a light to moderate exercise 2-3 times a week for 30 minutes at a time. Forget about counting the miles and calories. Just focus on elevating your heart beat and pacing yourself. Also, try to get a workout  buddy! Research shows having a workout buddy will not only help you burn more calories but also make exercise fun 🙂

3.) Eat Your Breakfast! Yes, it is the most important meal of the day. You need to break your fasting mode to jump start your metabolism. Aim for a healthy breakfast averaging 200-300 calories (i.e. egg white omelet and a bowl of oatmeal, homemade smoothie and peanut butter toast, a bowl of cereal (avoid the high-carb, sugary kinds) with a bowl of fruit, etc).

4.) Add A Few More Veggies, Kids! Find a way to incorporate one serving of  fresh raw fruits or vegetables to at least 2 of your meals a day. It can be as simple as eating fruit at breakfast and carrot sticks and dip at lunch. Or, if you have a juicer then juice up your rabbit food if it’s easier for you to drink it.

5.) That’s High Quality H2o- By far the most important baby step is to try to drink more water. The benefits of water are endless. If you are addicted to soda and sugar juices, try to reduce your intake to no more than 12oz a day. You eventually want to eliminate these crap liquids from your daily diet completely. But for now, gulp down at least 32-48oz of water a day. Your goal by the summer is to drink 64oz of water each day and zilch sugar crap liquid. You will whine at first, but I know you’ll see and feel the difference in a couple of weeks.

My list can go on and on, but let’s not stray from the theme…Baby Steps. Choose your baby steps to best suit the  healthier lifestyle you are trying to achieve, and remember it takes TIME to yield those big results. Additionally, allow yourself room for human error, and don’t beat yourself up if one day you wander a bit from the  path. Simply refocus your goals and just get yourself back on track the next day. Whether your reason for becoming healthy is to lose weight, slow down aging, gain more energy, live longer or rev up your libido, it’s clearly advantageous on any level.

Lesson Overview: Aiming small and achieving long-lasting results is better than starting  big and then crashing hard.

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Veni, Vidi, Vici: How to Conquer Winter Viruses Before They Conquer You

By this time in winter, many of you  may have already experienced your first cold (or two). For those who still haven’t, congrats on your sustaining victory! Either you have one hell of an immune system or you’ve learned how to play the “Dodge Sick People and Germy Places” game very well. But eventually, we all catch one of those pesky cold and/or flu viruses at some point in our lives. But you’re in luck! I have compiled a short how-to-guide of tips that will aid you tremendously in staying healthy all 365 days.

BEFORE YOU READ WARNING: Remember to always consult your physician before you begin a new regimen of vitamin or herbal supplements. I don’t want anyone to take anything that contraindicates (i.e. adverse effects) your current prescription drugs or treatments. Always safety first kiddos 🙂

VITAMIN RAY’S TOP CURES FOR THE VIRAL WINTER BLUES:

1.) Make Vitamin C & D3 Your Best Friends

Whether you take a daily multivitamin or not, I bet most of you are still not getting enough of these two key immunity-  building vitamins. Scientific research has proven Vitamin C to be a powerful anti-viral and immunity booster. And Vitamin D3 is not only great for your bones and calcium absorption,  but it’s also an important enhancer of immunity. And no, a glass of milk or OJ will not simply do the trick.

  • Suggested  Dose: Vitamin C (500-1,000mg); Vitamin D3 (1,000-2,000IU)
  • Vitamin Ray’s Dose: Vitamin C (1,000-2,000IU); Vitamin D3 (1,500IU)

2.) You Must Get Plenty Of Rest To Be At Your Best!

I know sleep can get in the way of work, school, and having an active social life. However, lack of sleep will eventually weaken your immune system and leave you miserable. You’re not invincible, and even the super hero needs some type of normal sleep schedule to be efficient. Aim for 7-8hrs/night (or day for you night owls).

3.) Wash, Wash, Wash Your Hands

Before you eat or touch your face and mouth, remember to wash your hands first. So many germs and viruses can get into your system just by touching your eyes, mouth, nose, etc. I’m not saying to become OCD about it. But do be mindful and conscientious. Remember, some cold viruses can live on certain surfaces for  up to 6hrs or more. Yuck!

4.) Sanitize Your PHONES

Cell phones…the one thing most of us digital folks can’t live without. Sad to say,  they are also germ magnets. When was the last time you took the time to wipe down your cell phone with a alcohol-based wipe? Can’t remember? Gross! You have to wipe these devices regularly. There are studies that revealed cell phones to contain more bacteria than a toilet handle! Some cells even tested positive for MRSA…yikes. 

http://www.naturalnews.com/026264_MRSA_infection_hospital.html

5.) GET PHYSICAL!

Whatever your method of fitness (walking, running, climbing, Zumba, yoga, etc)…just do it! Health experts have the statistics to support the immunity benefits of keeping an active lifestyle. People who exercise on average 4-5 days a week for at least 20-30 minutes/day tend to stave off cold and flu viruses better, and if they do get sick then the duration time tends to be much shorter. And let’s say you think it’s too cold to exercise and just rather cuddle with your sweetie. Well hey, I’m sure there are other forms of indoor exercise you two can come up with to still produce some great benefits 😉

http://www.naturalnews.com/031089_flu_infections_physical_fitness.html

Thanks for tuning in! Hope this helps you stay healthy and happy this winter 🙂

Namaste


A Naturopath’s Debut

Hello All! My name is Vitamin Ray, or Ray for short. This blog is only the very beginning of my long-term goal and conquest to help further educate more people about the extraordinary benefits of living a more natural and holistic lifestyle.

And what makes me the expert at this? Well, I’m not quite a true expert yet. However, I do practice what I preach and I am currently in naturopathic medical school. For those who don’t already know, naturopathic medical school is the third field of medicine that is legalized, board certified, accredited, and taught in North America. I’ll begin with the basics so you all can clearly know the differences.

Conventional medical school, which is also the most popular, is call Allopathic medicine. Students who attend these schools obtain a Medical Doctorate (or M.D.) and utilize pharmaceutical/drug therapy (i.e. pills and chemical-bases treatments) to aid in the treatment of diseases and ailments.

The next field, second most popular, is Osteopathic Medicine (aka Osteopathy). Osteopathic medical schools, also called D.O. schools, are the same as allopathic medical schools except the students learn an additional modality called Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine (or OMM- a form of musculo-skeletal manipulation similar to chiropractics). When students graduate from this form of medical school they receive a Doctorate in Osteopathic Medicine and a D.O. title. Additionally, many D.O.s also tend to be more open-minded to alternative/complementary medicine and also recognize that the body can heal itself naturally.

The third field of medicine in North America, a close derivative of the oldest  type of medicine, is called Naturopathic medicine or naturopathy. Naturopathy is the practice of using a natural, holistic approach to medicine. This form of medicine does not believe in using pharmaceuticals, drugs, or other chemical based therapies to aid the body in healing. In fact, naturopaths believe and understand that the human body can self-heal and the purpose of doctors is to help teach a patient to activate their own innate healing ability through the use of herbs, botanicals, vitamins, nutrition, exercise, massage/musculo-skeletal manipulation,  and hydrotherapy to name a few.

As a student and patient of naturopathy, I want to share my experiences and wisdom with others in the world in hopes of teaching you all another alternative you can use for your health. Anyone can benefit from naturopathic medicine and it is often times much cheaper than allopathic and osteopathic medicine because you can use what nature has already laid before you as your medicine for self healing and sustenance.

Welcome to my naturopathic blog, and I encourage everyone to read my posts with an open mind and heart. And because education is strongly based in the exchange of information, please feel free to leave comments, questions, and anything else on your mind to contribute to the grand effort of expanding naturopathy. Thanks and Namaste 🙂