Why Do We Crave Certain Foods?

It’s a mystery isn’t it? Going from fridge to cabinet to pantry knowing you are hungry but not knowing what you’re hungry for?

Hunger is an umbrella whose spokes branch out in different directions. Sometimes it’s not a food you’re even seeking. Rather it could be comfort, security, to soothe loneliness or a need for increased mental focus.

Occasionally your body simply desires water which is found in all foods and it’s not hunger pangs at all. So drink a glass and see if that helps. If not, ask yourself, “Am I really hungry or is it simply a feeling that needs addressing?”

By understanding the reason why behind the loss of control, you’ll recognize the urge when it occurs again.

Certain food cravings have hidden meanings. One should be aware of personal trigger mechanisms. Always ask yourself, what happened just before I craved this type of food and lost control?

Creamy foods like mac and cheese provide comfort. Are you sad, lonely or did you recently suffer a loss?

Hard, crunchy foods is usually an indication you are angry or stressed. Did your boss or mother-in-law tick you off today?  Stress affects the adrenal glands and releases toxins into your system which is dangerous.

Sometimes we simply love to eat! Therefore select wisely:

Craving sweets? Slice up a nutrient-dense apple or banana and dab a teaspoon of peanut butter on a few pieces. For a real treat, melt about 12 semi-sweet chocolate chips and dip some strawberries into the sauce. You’re getting magnesium, potassium, choline, copper, B vitamins, iron and many other essential nutrients. Not bad!

Craving specific nutrient-based foods is the way the brain’s hypothalamus tells someone they are low in a particular nutrient.

For example, low in energy? Lack of chromium or iron could be the cause of an insulin imbalance resulting in low blood sugar and energy. Instead of reaching for a piece of cake or a sixth cup of coffee, reach for raisins or a teaspoon of blackstrap molasses. For lunch create a spinach salad, roast beef sandwich or grill a 93% hamburger.

Another alternative would be to select foods high in Chromium.  This essential micronutrient acts like a doorknob, allowing insulin to be enter your body more slowly. You can find it in walnuts, sliced chicken, red grapes, corn, broccoli or mushrooms. Always try to balance your meals with a combination of lean protein, good omega 3 fatty acids and fibrous carbohydrates for longer lasting energy.

Finding yourself mentally fuzzy-brained and reaching for that energy drink to get you through the day? Rather than consuming that sugary donut or chemically-dangerous beverage, consume nutrients with a bit more beneficial power like green tea, avocado, banana or berries, especially blueberries. Spicy foods like salsa also rejuvenate!

It’s not unusual during the winter season to become depressed as sunshiny days are few and far between. Garlic is a great mood enhancer. Add it to pasta sauces, pork, beef, chicken recipes, grilled vegetables or as a dip with vegetables.

Anything’s fine in moderation!  Indulging in a piece of good quality dark chocolate is absolutely acceptable each day as long as it doesn’t challenge common sense. Make yourself a fruit smoothie or even a chocolate shake with 1% milk and ice. Yum! If chocolate becomes addictive with uncontrollable cravings, don’t bring it into your home.

As the Apostle Paul says: “I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should. Otherwise, I fear that after preaching to others I myself might be disqualified.  (1 Corinthians 9:27)

By taking control of your cravings you’ll feel as empowered every day!







Why Dark Chocolate is the Perfect Valentine Gift!

On a morning show recently, I heard this health professional snidely remark, “Well you wouldn’t eat dark chocolate every day would you???”

Oh my dear lady, Of course I would and usually DO!

Doesn’t she keep up on the latest info available? Oh wait, never mind. I derived mine from God’s instructions 6,000 years ago when God told Adam he could eat from any tree in the Garden except the tree of knowledge of good and evil. Let me assure you: the cocoa bean comes from a tree which isn’t evil.

I know, I could have waited until next week but hopefully husbands are contemplating Valentine’s gifts this week. So I’m passing along this suggestion now.

Sometimes I overhear, “Oh, I was baaaad; I ate chocolate this week.” Giggle, giggle.

Why is chocolate so maligned? Chocolate, in moderation, is one of the finest, nutrient-dense  foods one can consume. The cocoa myth ranks up there with avoiding eggs and shrimp with good HDL cholesterol.

I follow a simple formula, if God says it, I believe it, that settles it. However in case you don’t, let me convince you of the benefits of dark chocolate.

Chocolate is a powerful anti-oxidant, ranking even higher than the acai, pomegranate and blueberry on the protection scale. What do antioxidants do? Let me count the ways:

  1. They act as a natural sunblock, protecting us against ultra violet rays and skin damage.
  2. It protects against ailments like heart disease, vision impairments, hypertension, diabetes and cancers.
  3. It assists in lowering blood pressure because chocolate contains natural nitric oxide which increases oxygen levels and relaxes blood vessels.

Chocolate boosts our mood due to its phenethylamine (PEA) content. This is a 50-cent word which stimulates the brain to produce the feel-good neurotransmitter serotonin. PEA acts as drug. It stimulates the nervous system and triggers feel good endorphins. (One reason chocolate’s addictive. It’s hard to stop something that makes you feel so emotionally good.)

But a normal serotonin level is important because it improves one’s mood, sleep patterns and increases libido. When one is low in serotonin, they’re usually cranky, impatient and could act erratically. Women who suffer from PMS often find themselves depressed, craving chocolate because serotonin levels are diminished.

Subconsciously you might find yourself searching for chocolate after you’ve had a bad day or are lonely. Remember it’s a treat not a crutch. Bring it into your home only if you can control your behavior around it.

Chocolate is an enigma. It contains theobromine and caffeine which are stimulants and yet  reduces the stress-hormone cortisol, once again increasing serotonin, the pleasure hormone.

The nutrients found in chocolate are incredible: Potassium, zinc, magnesium, manganese, iron, copper, great fatty acids, good saturated and monounsaturated fat. The cocoa bean also contains valuable flavonoids, polyphenols, fiber and cocoa butter, (a great moisturizer.)

Chocolate even contains powerful probiotics which improve digestion and good bacteria to fight infection. Need another reason to consume chocolate? Believe it or not the antibacterial compounds will fight plague and tooth decay!

One of the best ways to consume dark chocolate is to place 15 semi-sweet chocolate chips in a small container. Eat one at a time, savoring each one. Don’t place another in your mouth until you’re done with the first one.

Another way is to melt those chips and slice fresh berries, bananas or your favorite fruit and use chocolate as a dip.

These are just some of the many ways chocolate benefits the body. Just enjoy God’s bounty without making anything an idol.

“The earth has yielded its produce; God, our God, blesses us.” (Psalm 67:6)


You’re an Individual, Lose Weight as One!

Everyone’s lives are chemically differently with various bone structure and stress levels so there’s really no “one-size-fits-all” diet plan.  Besides you don’t want to rely on a “diet” – you want to change your lifestyle.

An adult’s caloric intake should never drop below 1200 calories or your metabolism will begin shutting down and physiologically you’ll gain when you eat “normally” again. Keep things simple, slow and steady. I suggest reducing 500 “junky” calories per day x 7 days = 3500 calories which equals a pound of fat loss safely per week. Add daily exercise and you’ll lose even more of course.

You must eat!!! Starvation never works.Your body is like an engine. It needs to be kept powered with energy to produce energy; that’s the First Law of Thermodynamics. So strive to consume mini-meals throughout the day.

Keeping it simple, here’s a suggested sensible typical daily eating plan that can be adapted to fit your schedule:

For Breakfast:  Choose 4-8 oz. of good quality yogurt, Dannon Natural or Mountain High are my favorites. Eat yogurt first. Why? Because the good bacteria strengthens your immune system’s digestion track. (Also the natural   liquid whey contains weight loss properties.)

Most nutrients get dispersed out of the small intestine so if it’s clogged up, it can’t function properly. In a hurry? Create a quick smoothie with yogurt, a banana, orange juice, ice and 1% milk.  I call it my “magnesium-potassium” shake.

Then consume 3/4 cup of a high fiber (5 grams +) flavorful cereal like Great Grains, Shredded Wheat, Raisin Bran, Grape nuts, Kashi products. If you have high cholesterol, choose soluble fiber which turns into a gel, like oatmeal, reducing bad cholesterol. Insoluble fiber, like bran, push waste through your digestion system so you’ll absorb nutrients efficiently.  Add a banana, raisins or berries for additional fiber. Use almond, soy, 1% milk (2% is 40% fat).

Carbohydrates remain 15 minutes – 3 hours in your digestive system, depending on the amount of fiber contained in the carbs which lasts longer. Then increase water. You’ll feel fuller because fiber expands, which also slows down insulin dispersion.

Mid-morning:  Bring a snack to work like a 1/4 cup of walnuts, an apple, red grapes, banana or other fruit for brain function. Your brain feeds primarily on glucose.

Lunch:  Choose low-sodium or homemade soups, a salad with protein/colorful greens for nutrients, a low-sodium  microwaveble meal, a small  veggie/low-cal sandwich, one brought from home on whole wheat.  You can also bring ‘planned-overs’ from last night’s dinner.

Proteins last in your system from 2-4 hours. We only burn up about 30 grams of protein in 2 1/2 hours so don’t over-indulge!

Afternoon snack: If you won’t arrive home until late, try carrot sticks, 2 thin slices of light cheese on 4 Triscuits. a tablespoon of peanut butter on two low-fat crackers, apple or a cup of herbal tea.

Home now, go for a walk to relieve stress or listen to music, take a short bath and de-stress before eating.

Dinner: Lots of choices!! Consume 3-4 oz. of lean protein, sirloin, pork loin, chicken breast, shrimp, crab, tuna, any white fish.

Eat 5x’s more water-based vegetables than meat, (broccoli, garden salad, sliced tomatoes, cucumbers) a whole grain such as a baked potato, pasta, corn, peas, bread.  Avoid frying your food and enjoy the taste of grilled, broasted or baked choices.  Add olive oil or canola oil to your salads and use real butter sparingly.

Desserts?  Indulge in one individual dark Dove, Ghirardelli or other fine high quality chocolate and savor the taste.

You’re in control now.  Making the right decisions is empowering!!!

“But I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified.” (1 Corinthians 9:27)

Good Intentions and Physiological Truths

This time of year everyone “resolves” to lose weight. A tightrope walker doesn’t resolve to walk across the rope, he commits himself to successfully completing his goal every time!

When we get married, we don’t resolve to love the person we are marrying. “Gee I hope I can love them forever . . . ” No, we vow to remain committed to them through good and challenging times.

I’d rather people commit themselves to becoming healthier than resolving to lose weight.

Health is more important than weight loss. When one eats right, they naturally become slimmer because the body’s homeostasis kicks in. Homeostasis is simply a fancy word for the body’s natural innate physiological balance.

Throughout the holiday season, from Thanksgiving to New Year’s, you, like me, probably attended a myriad of special events, parties and other functions. We bring out the best of our recipes to honor those around us.

Trouble is, most of these special culinary delights are loaded with fats and simple sugars creating an acidic environment in which our body labors for proper balance. There is nothing wrong with a little natural sugar or butter occasionally but now we must start to rid ourselves of the toxins which rage within our system, preventing an optimum healthy environment.

Many vow to begin a new year with a clean slate. They create resolutions – to resolve to “do better” through sheer willpower. I resolve to lose 50 pounds or not consume chocolate.

I’d urge you, rather than “resolve,” to commit to a healthier lifestyle:

1. Be mentally ready or you are simply spinning your wheels, wasting time. You’ll lose of course but if you can’t reach or maintain a particular diet goal, you’ll start to yo-yo, losing muscle and gaining fat back.

2. Educate/research before falling for a false diet plan. Everyone is on some kind of diet, for a diet is only what one consumes each day. The only good “diet” is one you can sustain for a lifetime! So create a balanced one with more fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, seeds and herbs as God encouraged in Genesis 1:29.

3. There is no secret formula to weight loss. True health comes from a balanced plan of nutrient-dense natural foods. (Mediterranean, DASH or Volumetric plans.) God originally created every nutrient in the Garden for a specific purpose; to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Mankind messed it up.

Stay away from the artificial chemicals, dyes, preservatives and unnatural man-made products as much as possible. Those cannot metabolize in the liver. There they fester, creating a human chemistry lab where all sorts of diseases and cancers could evolve.

Commit yourself to becoming healthier. It’s not simply a matter of willpower. It’s more complicated than that. It’s a matter of understanding physiology and how the hypothalamus controls your appetite and regulates nutrients. It’s a matter of emotions connected to food. Use my search engine to read my post: Sometimes a cookie isn’t “just a cookie” to understand how our feelings connect to our food choices.

Don’t  believe the lies of today’s false diet gurus who profess, “surely you won’t die if you try this diet plan.” As a nutritional counselor for over 25 years, I can assure you that yes, some do die following false prophets of hope.

“So stop telling lies. Let us tell our neighbors the truth, for we are all parts of the same body.” (Ephesians 4:25 NLT)

I am committing myself to posting more often this month to provide mental, physical and spiritual truth to those who are desperate to lose weight. I’m begging you to avoid those who profess outrageous dietary claims.  Stay tuned.


Thinking of “Dieting?” Let’s Be Practical, Read This!

It’s nearly the start of the “Diet-Season” when millions enthusiastically begin a diet on January 2nd and . . . usually fall off that bandwagon three weeks later. Why?

Failing on a diet plan is usually not because we don’t know what we should do. Most realize we:  1. eat less 2. exercise more 3. slow down and 4. drink water, etc., etc. . . . Yet we fail time and time again, even when we believe we are doing the right thing! That’s frustrating and self-defeating.

Weight loss is much more than mere willpower. There is no magic formula. Since we are each uniquely created, it’s primarily an individually  mental, physiological and Spiritual challenge. It’s also a matter of understanding the scientific reasons behind the “why” we can self-destruct.

My book, “Life’s Too Short to Eat Bad Cheese . . .” will make the perfect  motivational New Year’s gift this year. It’s not simply another diet book. With over 241 pages of practical lifestyle applications, it encourages a brand new mental, physical and spiritual approach to becoming a New Creation:

“Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away. Behold, the new has come!”  (2 Corinthians 5:17)

“Life’s Too Short to Eat Bad Cheese” (Nutritional & Life Lessons God Teaches Us) addresses such topics as:

  1. Strive for excellence, not perfection
  2. Why losing weight isn’t simply a matter of willpower!
  3. Why sometimes a cookie isn’t “just a cookie”
  4. Why dieting is like the Westminster Dog Show
  5. Why you can’t outsmart a fat cell
  6. Why physiologically, fad diets never work
  7. The secrets to weight loss success and so much more!

Truth is, God never meant for us to live on complicated, fallacy-laden, restrictive diet plans which clearly reject our Maker’s fundamental psychological, physiological and spiritual wishes.

Healthy-living is not adhering to a “penance principle” of restriction and suffering.  God set Adam in a Garden for a reason and provided the perfect Master Plan for health. Yet people needlessly consume “magic” formulas: “sticks and twigs,” processed packaged foods, drink tasteless protein shakes or restrict their diet needlessly.

Why? There is no need to deny oneself chocolate, cheese, eggs, potatoes, bananas, shrimp or any other food while consuming only rice cakes and celery. Avoidance and flagellation will not get one closer to God unless he enjoys living as a monk!

God gave us the perfect dietary plan in Genesis 1:29 and 9:3. He also instilled us with common sense. I address the fact that we’ve each been formed uniquely with a different chemical make-up. There is no one-size-fits-all diet plan but there are physiological truths we should live by!

“Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do everything for God’s glory.” (1 Corinthians 10:31)

Discover true vitality through a sensible every day eating plan, honoring God in the process!

“Life’s Too Short to Eat Bad Cheese” is filled with realistic illustrations, practical applications and beneficial common sense! If one concentrates on nutrients, they will naturally be healthier because their body will crave healthier choices while resisting uncontrollable cravings. But how does one do that??? I explain how.

Read this book to discover by which means you can become stronger, develop strategies and routinely overcome temptation, becoming confident as a New Creation!

UPDATE: Don’t be dismayed (if it’s still there) by seeing the amazon price of $47.82 – amazon is holding my publisher hostage in order to receive 40% commission! The Ingram Group is negotiating for us.

The paperback book can be purchased from Outskirts Press at the very affordable price of $13.46, or or Barnes and Noble as well as in e-book format for only $7 on

Please don’t give up and settle for second best!  You are worth far more than that!

Surviving the “Eating” Season

This time of year, one might receive more dinner party invitations than time allows. So how can one stick with an eating plan without adding inches to the waistline? First, don’t stress out.


Policies to Strive For: 

  • Start out with a (if possible) smaller  plate. Strive for 5x’s more vegetables covering it than meat. Simple. No weighing or measuring.
  • Cover your plate with nutrient dense vegetables such as broccoli, asparagus, green beans, peas, red/green peppers, onions, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts.  (Physiologically, these foods create an alkaline environment in which cancer cells cannot thrive.)
  • Consume 4-5 cups of vegetables daily. Vegetables are primarily water so you’ll hydrate yourself while consuming nutrients and fiber!
  • Lean meats:  3-4 ounces of lean meat is all you need at one time, (approximate the size of a deck of cards).
  • Your body needs variety. Vitamins, minerals, amino acids, enzymes, phytonutrients have different responsibilities. Everything’s meant to work together for good. Disregarding a vital nutrient will change your body’s chemistry.

Don’t allow guilt or faulty thinking to blind you to facts:

Many dieters avoid beef.  There’s no need to do so. London Broil, Filet Mignon, Sirloin Steak, Tenderloin, eye of round or top round have approximately 6 grams of fat per 3.5 oz serving.  Dark meat chicken, (legs/thighs) actually has a higher fat content at 11 grams per serving.

Beef also contains high amounts of B12 which is an energy vitamin!  That doesn’t mean you should eat beef every night. Consume  chicken, turkey or pork for variety. But a steak sandwich?  No problem.  Grill Sirloin, slice 3 oz, place on a whole grain roll, smother it in grilled mushrooms, peppers and onions, even add a thin slice of mozzarella. Include a green salad with 1 tbsp dressing. Are you suffering? No. Food should have flavor and be enjoyable to eat!

Lean pork, (loin) contains Thiamine, the “feel-good” vitamin.  Add herbs, garlic, fruit, seasonings and consume nutrients!

Any broiled, grilled or baked fish; Tilapia, salmon, Swai, halibut, codfish, shrimp are wonderful additions to your eating plan.  Add seasoning such as lemon, herbs, wine or salsa over fish for variety.

Add a whole grain; potatoes, corn, brown rice, barley, pasta. You mean I can eat potatoes too?  Aren’t potatoes bad for me?  A potato contains vitamins A, E, D, K, C, B1, B2, B3, B6, folate, choline, calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, zinc, copper, manganese and selenium. Does that sound like something God wants you to avoid?  Resist covering with tons of butter, sour cream or drowning it in oil and it’ll stay healthy. Sweet potatoes are even more nutritious!

Pasta? Again, buy fibrous whole grain. Create tomato sauces with lots of vegetables! I’ve replaced heavy cream with a smaller amount of Neuchâtel/light cream cheese and parmesan, creating a fabulous 20% fat alfredo sauce!

Your typical dinner should look like this:  60% fresh fruits, vegetables and whole grains. 15% comprise grilled, broiled or baked lean protein. The rest, 25%, can be filled with good fats: olive, canola oil, avocados, salad dressing, coconut, nuts or an occasional desert. We are adults, we live under grace and we can choose what we want.

Begin your New Year determined to be a New Creation.

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.”  (2 Corinthians 5:17)



The Christmas and holiday season will affect our skin and hair. This lovely lady is now following my blog and her practical tips are easy to read and follow.

Stress will affect the hair. (And you must admit this season is a stressful one!) Also all the social events, delicious but non-nutrient dense choices will wreck havick on our skin and hair. I’d also recommend a cinnamon and honey mask for your skin along with these great practices. Relax and don’t forget to breathe!!! Remember the real reason for the season, ❤

“Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.”   ( Proverbs 31:30)


Hi friends,here I am with an another new post.In my previous post I shared my thought on how to pamper your skin during this winter season.After skin care we all think about our hair care regime because winter takes its toll with flying hair, dry scalp and styling problems caused by wearing hats. In the winter months, hair needs a lot of tender loving care.

Now that the winter months are upon us and the days are much colder, it’s time to start thinking about ways to protect our hair from the damage that the winter elements can cause. Here are some key tips and tricks to keep your hair and scalp healthy during winter.


  1. CLEAN YOUR HAIR : Always make sure that your hair is clean and keep it dirt free. Pollution makes our scalp dirty,results itching problems and dandruff.One very simple tip is to wear a hat when out…

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