Wellness Scout

Shifting Priorities & Intentions

I recently heard a lecture which begged the questions: Can obstacles in life be strength builders or destroyers, are we the product of our circumstances? These questions led me to reflect on how different people mitigate the obstacles in their lives. How do you view obstacles in your life? Do you let them leave you feeling defeated? Or, do you try to gain strength from the experience, learn a lesson from it and try to move forward? Do you react to certain situations differently from others? Is your reaction different based on the circumstance (e.g., family illnesses, personal illness, tax obligations, job loss, struggles with a manager, house catastrophes, etc.)? Whenever you are put in a situation that puts you in a funk and causes you to think "What have I done with my life?" and "What will I do now?” how do you bounce back, rectify the issue, learn from it, and move forward to determine the next best solution? 

After doing our taxes and having a child, my husband and I realized that we may need to move in order to accommodate our shifting priorities and whether I should stay home full-time or part-time with our newborn. Before our daughter was born, we lived in the heart of the downtown Boston and relished in the urban lifestyle that comes with dining out multiple times per week, walking everywhere, driving less, enjoying short commutes, and living in a small space. We didn't mind. Everything was convenient for us and our priorities were met. Last fall, we moved to Cambridge to a larger place to accommodate family and the impending arrival of our newborn. After having a child, I have realized being in the hub of the city isn't as important to me as it is to have flexibility in working hours so I can spend more time with my baby. I had expectations of maintaining certain aspects of our previous life that would be accommodated in this new location: dining out, shopping in the city, seeing friends, going to events etc. However, those activities don't occur as much as I thought they would and living slightly farther from the city hasn’t deterred me from visiting my favorite coffee shop in another part of the city. Now, when I visit my favorite spots in the city, I appreciate them more and savor the experience. But I’ve also realized that my priorities have shifted and I am totally okay with that. In fact, I didn't even realize that my priorities shifted until I encountered an obstacle involving our financial future.

This came to light when my mom and I were discussing our living situations and we realized that we both have come to a crossroads. Initially, I got defensive and agitated at the thought of moving again and even further from my beloved view of downtown. Then I started to think: Maybe some of my mom’s comments about wanting things I hadn't before made sense. Maybe now I’d prefer to live closer to the grocery store, maybe now I’d prefer to spend less on living in the heart of the city so I can have more disposable income and can spend more time with our daughter. What are my priorities now? What are my life intentions now?
                    
I've always had a problem with the change that comes with a major life adjustment (e.g., moving, marriage, illness etc.). Now, I am experiencing another life change that is prompting me to re-evaluate what is most important to me. Not discounting tears and yelling matches and memories of fun times passed, it's saner to address these changes now as opposed to sticking my feet in the mud and having to deal with exacerbated problems later. As my mom always said "pain now or more pain later". Ugh, I hate it when she’s right!

The next time, one of these obstacles arises for you, view it as a way to re-evaluate your life goals and intentions for growth and development. What are your goals for you, your family, and your career? Be honest with yourself and what your priorities are now, 5 years from now and so on. Slowly shift and set your expectations accordingly so these obstacles no longer seem like obstacles but rather, opportunities to develop and push yourself closer to your life’s intentions.

Wellness Scout

Whole Foods - inconvenient or necessary?

What is a Whole Foods diet?

It is NOT a food item that Whole Foods Market sells in their hot bar.
It IS a diet that focuses on nutrients gained from natural sources versus processed or packaged foods. 
It IS about eating food in their whole form-- natural with as little alteration as possible and with a specific focus on vegetables, fruit, nuts, eggs, meat, fish, and poultry. In a whole foods diet, nutrients are more readily available and accessible for the body in the digestion process. This is also known as bio-availability. 

Why would you care about bio-availability or nutrient absorption? Since you are reading this, then you probably already enjoy health food topics or have concerns with your health ranging from lack of energy, weight management, bloating or many other things related to your intake of food. You should care because if nutrients are not being properly absorbed, then your body 1) does not receive the vitamins and minerals it needs to function properly, and 2) you will not feel satisfied and cravings will emerge. The end result of these effects are vitamin deficiencies which cause unwanted "conditions"ranging from hair loss, brittle nails, constipation, and skin diseases to a host of others unwanted and possibly damaging in the long term. These vitamin deficiencies also create cravings. When our body feels it hasn't been satisfied, cravings develop to fill the void. Cravings for foods such as potato chips (salty), fried foods (fat), ice cream or creamy products (calcium, dairy), or sweet items (sugar for energy). Cravings are a topic I'll discuss further in another blog. 

So now are you more interested in trying a whole foods diet? Do you want to nurture the body for strength and development? Do you want to eat for sustenance versus always thinking about the next meal? Eat to live, not live to eat? If so, here is where you find whole foods: the outer portion of the grocery store, not the inner aisles. Food items from the inner aisles of the grocery store that still constitute a whole foods diet would include dry beans, whole grains, and flours. In the outer aisles, you will find fruits, vegetables, nuts, fresh squeezed juices and fresh ground nut butters, fish, meat, poultry, dairy, eggs, cheese and breads. Follow the outer portion of the grocery store for a no-brainer guide on whole foods or contact me to set up a grocery tour consultation. 

How do you prepare whole foods for meals? Find simple recipes if you are just starting to prepare your meals and cook more. Things such as steamed or baked veggies with a protein. Cook grains and add raw or lightly sautéed veggies with olive oil, lemon juice, sea salt and seasonings. Here are few recipes I suggest from breakfast to sides to dinner options.



Red cabbage & apple soup
Breakfast quinoa broccoli & egg muffins
Buffalo chicken w/ feta blue cheese dip
Cheddar sage cornbread
Chipotle Chicken Salad
Veggie loaded avocado white bean salad
Ginger chicken w/braised bok choy
Curried cauliflower chickpeas with chicken

Another great source for simple, but lean recipes is Clean Eating. This magazine focuses on using whole foods and minimal sauces for clean meals, in an effort to avoid processed ingredients.


Try some of these recipes for a week and see how you feel. Remember change is slow especially in the long term and don't get discouraged if you don't see immediate results. Sustainable change will happen and when it does, it will be hard for you to return to those inner or frozen food aisles in the grocery store!

Wellness Scout

Whole Foods - inconvenient or necessary?

What is a Whole Foods diet?

It is NOT a food item that Whole Foods Market sells in their hot bar.
It IS a diet that focuses on nutrients gained from natural sources versus processed or packaged foods. 
It IS about eating food in their whole form-- natural with as little alteration as possible and with a specific focus on vegetables, fruit, nuts, eggs, meat, fish, and poultry. In a whole foods diet, nutrients are more readily available and accessible for the body in the digestion process. This is also known as bio-availability. 

Why would you care about bio-availability or nutrient absorption? Since you are reading this, then you probably already enjoy health food topics or have concerns with your health ranging from lack of energy, weight management, bloating or many other things related to your intake of food. You should care because if nutrients are not being properly absorbed, then your body 1) does not receive the vitamins and minerals it needs to function properly, and 2) you will not feel satisfied and cravings will emerge. The end result of these effects are vitamin deficiencies which cause unwanted "conditions"ranging from hair loss, brittle nails, constipation, and skin diseases to a host of others unwanted and possibly damaging in the long term. These vitamin deficiencies also create cravings. When our body feels it hasn't been satisfied, cravings develop to fill the void. Cravings for foods such as potato chips (salty), fried foods (fat), ice cream or creamy products (calcium, dairy), or sweet items (sugar for energy). Cravings are a topic I'll discuss further in another blog. 

So now are you more interested in trying a whole foods diet? Do you want to nurture the body for strength and development? Do you want to eat for sustenance versus always thinking about the next meal? Eat to live, not live to eat? If so, here is where you find whole foods: the outer portion of the grocery store, not the inner aisles. Food items from the inner aisles of the grocery store that still constitute a whole foods diet would include dry beans, whole grains, and flours. In the outer aisles, you will find fruits, vegetables, nuts, fresh squeezed juices and fresh ground nut butters, fish, meat, poultry, dairy, eggs, cheese and breads. Follow the outer portion of the grocery store for a no-brainer guide on whole foods or contact me to set up a grocery tour consultation. 

How do you prepare whole foods for meals? Find simple recipes if you are just starting to prepare your meals and cook more. Things such as steamed or baked veggies with a protein. Cook grains and add raw or lightly sautéed veggies with olive oil, lemon juice, sea salt and seasonings. Here are few recipes I suggest from breakfast to sides to dinner options.


Red cabbage & apple soup
Breakfast quinoa broccoli & egg muffins
Buffalo chicken w/ feta blue cheese dip
Cheddar sage cornbread
Chipotle Chicken Salad
Veggie loaded avocado white bean salad
Ginger chicken w/braised bok choy
Curried cauliflower chickpeas with chicken

Another great source for simple, but lean recipes is Clean Eating. This magazine focuses on using whole foods and minimal sauces for clean meals, in an effort to avoid processed ingredients.


Try some of these recipes for a week and see how you feel. Remember change is slow especially in the long term and don't get discouraged if you don't see immediate results. Sustainable change will happen and when it does, it will be hard for you to return to those inner or frozen food aisles in the grocery store!

Wellness Scout

Whole Foods - inconvenient or necessary?

What is a Whole Foods diet?

It is NOT a food item that Whole Foods Market sells in their hot bar.
It IS a diet that focuses on nutrients gained from natural sources versus processed or packaged foods. 
It IS about eating food in their whole form-- natural with as little alteration as possible and with a specific focus on vegetables, fruit, nuts, eggs, meat, fish, and poultry. In a whole foods diet, nutrients are more readily available and accessible for the body in the digestion process. This is also known as bio-availability. 

Why would you care about bio-availability or nutrient absorption? Since you are reading this, then you probably already enjoy health food topics or have concerns with your health ranging from lack of energy, weight management, bloating or many other things related to your intake of food. You should care because if nutrients are not being properly absorbed, then your body 1) does not receive the vitamins and minerals it needs to function properly, and 2) you will not feel satisfied and cravings will emerge. The end result of these effects are vitamin deficiencies which cause unwanted "conditions"ranging from hair loss, brittle nails, constipation, and skin diseases to a host of others unwanted and possibly damaging in the long term. These vitamin deficiencies also create cravings. When our body feels it hasn't been satisfied, cravings develop to fill the void. Cravings for foods such as potato chips (salty), fried foods (fat), ice cream or creamy products (calcium, dairy), or sweet items (sugar for energy). Cravings are a topic I'll discuss further in another blog. 

So now are you more interested in trying a whole foods diet? Do you want to nurture the body for strength and development? Do you want to eat for sustenance versus always thinking about the next meal? Eat to live, not live to eat? If so, here is where you find whole foods: the outer portion of the grocery store, not the inner aisles. Food items from the inner aisles of the grocery store that still constitute a whole foods diet would include dry beans, whole grains, and flours. In the outer aisles, you will find fruits, vegetables, nuts, fresh squeezed juices and fresh ground nut butters, fish, meat, poultry, dairy, eggs, cheese and breads. Follow the outer portion of the grocery store for a no-brainer guide on whole foods or contact me to set up a grocery tour consultation. 

How do you prepare whole foods for meals? Find simple recipes if you are just starting to prepare your meals and cook more. Things such as steamed or baked veggies with a protein. Cook grains and add raw or lightly sautéed veggies with olive oil, lemon juice, sea salt and seasonings. Here are few recipes I suggest from breakfast to sides to dinner options.



Red cabbage & apple soup
Breakfast quinoa broccoli & egg muffins
Buffalo chicken w/ feta blue cheese dip
Cheddar sage cornbread
Chipotle Chicken Salad
Veggie loaded avocado white bean salad
Ginger chicken w/braised bok choy
Curried cauliflower chickpeas with chicken

Another great source for simple, but lean recipes is Clean Eating. This magazine focuses on using whole foods and minimal sauces for clean meals, in an effort to avoid processed ingredients.


Try some of these recipes for a week and see how you feel. Remember change is slow especially in the long term and don't get discouraged if you don't see immediate results. Sustainable change will happen and when it does, it will be hard for you to return to those inner or frozen food aisles in the grocery store!