What does it mean to "Honor Your Hunger"?

Ignoring hunger is a great way to slow down your metabolism and increase your cravings... NOT what any of us want!

Body distrust is a very common issue among our culture today. For any of you who are confused, body distrust sounds like this, "Feel hungry? Just drink some water and ignore the hunger pangs!" "Craving carbs? Here's a carb substitute that'll trick you into feeling full" or even "I'm so bad, I have to be on a diet!"

The answer is no, you do not need to be on a crazy diet to lose weight, because your body already knows what it needs to do, you just need to work on tapping into those cues! When we're babies, we actually know exactly how much food we need because there are no emotional or restrictive barriers, until our parents start to restrict things...like candy. Once the restrictions start, our mind will make us want those foods more. We'll glorify the cakes and cookies and before we know it, we constantly "break our diets" and go back on them, an endless cycle.

One study done on children showed how intuitive eating, rather than restriction can be beneficial. The children were presented with a variety of foods, including dessert during dinner time. During the first week, the children would choose to eat dessert every day, likely because it was deemed a "treat" and restricted by their parents so the idea of having dessert for dinner was more appealing. After the dessert was put on the table each night next to a healthy dinner, the children's feelings towards dessert neutralized and they started choosing dinner over dessert. The study suggests that not feeling restricted from "unhealthy" foods allowed for the children to eat intuitively, rather than emotionally. 

The same would go for an adult who is on an extremely strict diet that their constantly falling off of. If you remove the restrictions, you will find yourself choosing healthy foods and feeling better overall. With the guidance of a dietitian, you can find what portion sizes and foods work best for your body and feel great in no time!


The all-or-nothing mindset that lurks in the shadows of diet culture, is a sure-fire way to set yourself up for weight fluctuation, binges, chaotic eating, and food anxiety. How can this pain be avoided? By listening to your body's hunger cues!  If you remove dietary restrictions and your body receives the energy it needs on a regular basis, your chronic cravings and food obsession will likely dissipate. 

Where to start? For many people, listening to their bodies is something they have avoided for years! Once learned, it will feel like it's second nature. Here's how to get started!

 

Two ways to start Intuitive Eating NOW:

1. Take a moment and jot down a time when you felt hungry. This may seem elementary, but many of us don't know we're hungry until we are ravenous.

2. Pause to check in occasionally. Hunger increases over time, and your goal should be to aim for eating somewhere between the initial hunger signs and ravenous hunger. You can use a hunger scale, found in the ebook above!

 

The Ultimate Keto Guide

what is ketosis?

When carbohydrates are consumed, the body will break them down in to glucose. Glucose is the body's preferred choice of energy.

When carbohydrate consumption is low, the body must look for other sources of energy. It's 2nd choice for energy is from ketones. Fat released from cells will flood the liver where it converts the fat into ketones.

This process means the body is in a state of ketosis.

getting into ketosis

The process of switching energy sources takes time and comes with certain side effects (i.e., the keto "flu"). Planning and preparing are key to starting the diet in a healthy way and greater successs. Keep these tips in mind when starting a keto diet

10 Golden Rules to the Healthiest You

10 Golden Rules to the Healthiest You

Follow these 10 Golden Rules to optimize your health with simple, everyday habits.

Why We all Need to Invest in Cooking Classes (Orange County)

I have seen exceptional growth in clients who sign up for cooking classes. Not only does it speed up their progress with weight loss and health, but it also gets them to enjoy stepping into the kitchen without being intimidated anymore.

Benefits of Learning How to Cook

  1. Becoming more familiar with how to put together ingredients so you can meal prep on a whim!

  2. Trying new 30 minute meals that could become your family's new favorites! You will be getting an exclusive eCookbook with access to over 85 healthy recipes.

  3. Saving money by not eating out or buying pre-packaged meals.

  4. Getting yourself out of the cycle of cooking the same recipes over and over.

  5. If your significant other is not as skilled in the kitchen, this would be a fun opportunity for him or her to learn with you and get more confident with cooking.

Clients are able to become more familiar with new ingredients and how to use them by creating quick and easy recipes.

Take for example a simple Greek tsatziki dip that you don't have to be a chef and you don't have to be Greek to make! It's packed with probiotics and made with ingredients you could find in your refrigerator and pantry any day of the week. 

 
 

If you feel like you need to start with the basics, the first class will involve learning how to chop a variety of vegetables.

You'll be making a fabulous zoodle soup from my eCookbook that I will provide exclusively for you. This will help you get started on handling the kitchen knife safely, something that is very intimidating for most people who avoid getting in the kitchen! 

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Some clients find themselves cooking the same dishes over and over again because they simply can not figure out an easy way to prepare vegetables that may be unfamiliar.

Take cabbage for example, it is not exactly a vegetable that most people cook with regularly, but it can be dressed up into a delicious salad that lasts up to three days!

Season it with some salt, lemon, tahini and olive oil. You will soon give eating healthy a new twist in your house. No more boring chicken and steamed broccoli! It's time for some variety and flavor.

Increase Gut Bacteria, Registered Dietitian in Orange County

Truth: you can have low levels of gut bacteria even if you've been taking probiotics for years.

We live in a world where digestive issues are becoming more problematic and also, the new normal. As someone who has been working with clients who have a multitude of digestive issues  — bloating, poor absorption of nutrients, food intolerances, H. pylori, the list goes on — I know a thing or two about digestion both personally and professionally. Poor digestion can be caused by many factors that affect gut bacteria, including a poor diet (i.e. lack of whole foods, fiber, nutrients), repeated and frequent use of antibiotics and some prescription medications, stress, genetics, and underlying medical issues.

Until recently, scientists believed that taking probiotics was the best way to increase the levels of healthy gut bacteria. Yes, it is a magical pill filled with little bacteria that has the ability to regulate your gut health, however...

recent research has shown that while probiotics have numerous benefits, they don’t quantitatively increase beneficial gut microbes over the long term.

If not probiotics, then what does?

Fiber.

We have enzymes in our gut to break down large molecules, such as protein, carbohydrates and fat. That does not happen with fiber. Instead, it passes through our stomach, drawing out waste, and remains completely intact before entering the colon, where it becomes “food” for the beneficial microorganisms that live there. 

Studies have shown that fiber has the incredible ability to increase levels of beneficial bacteria in the gut. Fiber is a “prebiotic,” which is defined as a nutrient that is not digestible by humans but that increases the levels of beneficial gut bacteria.

So, if you have low levels of beneficial bacteria, don’t forget to include fiber/prebiotics in your strategy, along with your probiotics.

They support each other: the probiotics are the beneficial bacteria themselves, and the prebiotics are the food these bacteria need to thrive.

Diet for Candida And Leaky Gut Syndrome

Leaky Gut Syndrome and Candida are very often linked, and indeed a Candida overgrowth is one of the most common causes of Leaky Gut Syndrome.

Leaky gut is a condition that occurs when the Candida yeast cells transform into their pathogenic, fungal form and start to grow small branches named hyphae. These branches can attach themselves to the mucous membrane that forms the inner lining to your intestine, literally breaking through it and creating a hole in the wall.

As a result, the body begins to develop food sensitivities and intolerances, which leads to uncontrolled weight loss. People with candida may find themselves having itchy skin and yeast infections more than the average person.

The mucous membrane in your gut is important because it is the lining that prevents food particles and other substances from leaking out into your bloodstream.

When this lining is compromised, undigested food particles can enter into your blood. Once there, they are recognized as foreign substances by your immune system, triggering an immune response. Your immune system remembers this, and triggers a similar immune response the next time you eat that food. This results in chronic inflammation and other symptoms that are typically associated with food allergies.

Food sensitivities are not the only health problem related to Leaky Gut Syndrome. It has also been associated with auto-immune diseases like fibromyalgia, Crohn’s disease, chronic fatigue, multiple sclerosis, ulcerative colitis, and rheumatoid arthritis.

The best way to prevent Leaky Gut Syndrome is by reversing your Candida overgrowth and avoiding other common culprits like inflammatory foods. In order to do so, it is important to take a food sensitivity test and start with anti-fungal supplements. 

By preventing the Candida yeast cells from multiplying and transforming into their fungal form, you can maintain the integrity of your intestinal walls through proper diet and supplemental precautions, and prevent substances from leaking through into your bloodstream. 

Referenced From The Ultimate Candida Diet Program

Nutritionist in Orange County for Weight-Loss and Lifestyle Change

Is it just me or is the new health trend starting to look like we are micromanaging our lives?

We’re tracking our calories, tracking our steps, restricting our carbs and counting our nuts. What happened to intuitively eating and exercising for fun? Has it come to running around our kitchen table just to fit in those 10,000 steps by the end of the day?

A study published in 2016 shows no difference whatsoever between those who used a fitbit for a year and those who didn’t. This kind of data should have you rethinking these expensive devices. Stop stressing about the numbers, for all we know it’s probably negating the health benefits of exercise!

I have even seen some patients who sacrifice their yoga workout to go on a run instead. That way, their  doing something that will add more steps to their day. What good is that? Yoga has many health benefits but the obsession with tracking steps seems to be able to override that.

The trackers are definitely pretty but the symbolism is not.

Trackers show the world we need to be monitored, and that is certainly the opposite of nutrition counseling (by a dietitian, at least.) As a Registered Dietitian, my job is to guide and educate my patients until they reach the point where they finally believe that they can trust themselves to make good food decisions.

Looking for some guidance on how to become an Intuitive Eater and ditch the tracking?

Nutritionist in Orange County for Intuitive Eating

Should you start intuitive eating?

  • If I am craving a certain food, I don't allow myself to have it.

  • I have forbidden foods that I don't allow myself to eat.

  • I don't allow myself to eat what food I desire at that moment.

  • I follow eating rules that dictate what, when and how to eat.

  • I find myself eating when I feel emotional (anxious, bored, sad, depressed) even when I'm not physically hungry. 

 

What is Intuitive Eating?

It's difficult to respect your body when you are constantly chastising yourself for eating the wrong thing and looking the wrong way. Intuitive eating helps us understand our inner voice that drives our hunger and fullness and teaches us to make room for self love.

It brings us to a point where we can let go of the "diet" mentality and accept our appetites! It removes the guilt from eating and allows you to feel the physical sensation of hunger and fullness, so that you can stop when you are satisfied.

 

Intuitive Eating vs. Dieting

Intuitive Eating

1.Based on unconditional permission to eat when hungry and what food desired
2. Eating for physical rather than emotional reasons
3. Relying on internal hunger and satiety cues to determine when and how much to eat

Dieting

1. Based on temporary willpower and restriction
2. Eroding trust in yourself with food and overpowers the body's hunger and satiety cues
3. Eating vigilantly in the name of health resulting in undereating

Is The Low-Carb Diet Right For You?

If you've been considering starting the ketogenic diet but haven't been able to develop a delicious meal plan to stick to... you've found the right page! For more information on why keto is beneficial for your long term health, take a look at this post.

If you feel like keto is a bit much for you and you want to go the low carb route, there's nothing wrong with that. There are countless benefits to cutting out refined carbohydrates from your diet, including these and many more.

  1. Increased cognition and enhanced memory in adults. Studies have shown that the high fat diet increases stability of neurons in the brain and up-regulates brain mitochondria.

  2. Research has shown that ketone bodies produced on a high fat diet decreases tumor cells and prolongs survival of cancer. Cancer cells are unable to effectively use ketone bodies for energy.

  3. A high fat diet helps keep blood pressure in check and lowers triglyceride levels. The consumption of excess carbohydrates is actually the key driver of increasing triglycerides.

Nutritionist in Orange County for Inflammation

Mankind has known the classical symptoms of inflammation for hundreds of years, which include redness, pain and swelling, but what about the symptoms that result from chronic inflammation?

Emerging literature suggests that inflammation operates as a much more sophisticated system than ever thought. At the cellular level, the food that we eat can trigger inflammatory mediators, which result in symptoms not short of the following:

Symptoms

IRRITABLE BOWEL SYNDROME
CHRONIC CONSTIPATION
CHRONIC HEADACHES
FIBROMYALGIA
WEIGHT GAIN
DEPRESSION/ MOOD DISORDER
ATTENTION DEFICIT DISORDER
CHRONIC FATIGUE SYNDROME
BLOATING
SKIN CONDITIONS
ACNE
DECREASED LIBIDO
MENSTRUAL DISORDER

What is inflammation?

Inflammation is considered as an ‘adaptive response’ to any harmful effect threatening the integrity of the cellular homeostasis, an example being food. The longer this response persists, the more damaging the consequences.

What is the mechanism?

Activation of pathogen-specific receptors induces the production of  inflammatory mediators such as cytokines. 

These mediators accelerate the progression of inflammation  by modifying the vascular endothelial cell's permeability. Prostaglandins are produced as a result. These are hormones that can contribute to pain and are primarily responsible for the onset of symptoms through their effects on the central nervous system. 

Drugs, such as Aspirin, block prostaglandins to reduce pain, but you may be able to lower inflammation with some simple dietary changes as well.

 

MRT FOOD SENSITIVITY TESTING (MEDIATOR RELEASE TEST)

After drawing blood, the test measures the amount of mediators released when incubated with an individual food, additive or chemical. Released mediators produce physiologic effects leading to the symptoms listed above. The results of the mediator release test will determine which foods cause the most inflammatory response. By eliminating these foods, the chronic disease that resulted from the inflammation will cease it's symptoms.


mrt-test-reation-levels_orig.jpg
MECHANISM:
Antigen (pathogenic food/chemical/additive) is consumed --> activates cells, lymphocytes/basophils/neutrophils--> rather than being tolerated, T-cells react to antigen--> mediator release of cytokines/histamine/prostaglandins--> various symptoms arise

Nutritionist for Ketogenic Diet in Orange County

Since 2002, there have been over 20 human studies on low-carb diets, all suggesting that it is better than the alternative diet.

Many people have considered the ketogenic diet to be a fad, but there are several health benefits that should not be overlooked. Not only does the low carb diet improve weight-loss, but it can also improve cholesterol levels. Conflicting outdated information should be read with precaution and recent studies should absolutely be considered.

Here are a few reasons why the ketogenic diet may be the right fit for you. If you are considering trying this diet, it is recommended to stay within 20-30g of carbohydrates per day. Also, consuming Kegenix powder an hour before your workout will help put your body in a ketogenic state and burn more fat.

1. Studies have consistently shown that a high-fat and high-protein diet improves weight loss. Eating low-carb suppresses your appetite after a while and you end up consuming fewer calories.

2. More weight is lost in the beginning of adopting a low carb diet. Your insulin levels lower and thus your kidneys excrete sodium. This results in your body releasing excess water.

3. The abdominal fat around our stomach puts us at risk for type 2 diabetes and heart disease. Having a lot of fat in that area can drive inflammation and insulin resistance, so going on a low-carb diet reduces these symptoms, thus increasing weight loss in the stomach region.

4. Triglycerides are fat molecules but what mainly drives the numbers up are carbohydrates. Reducing your carb intake will decrease your risk of heart disease.

5. Unfortunately, the government still recommends a low fat diet for metabolic syndrome. Studies have shown that a low carb diet is the single most effective treatment for metabolic syndrome symptoms, including excess abdominal fat, high blood pressure, elevated blood sugar, high triglycerides, and low HDL.

Registered Dietitian for Nutrition Therapy in Orange County

Registered Dietitian for Nutrition Therapy in Orange County

Nutritionist located in Orange County providing nutrition coaching, cooking classes, grocery store tours and food sensitivity testing. Dietitian specializing in anti-inflammatory diets including the ketogenic diet, gluten-free diet and dairy-free diet. Experience in nutrition coaching for weight loss, polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), lupus, Crohn's, thyroid and eating disorders.

Breakfast Recipes by Registered Dietitian in Orange County

Breakfast Recipes by Registered Dietitian in Orange County

Nutritionist located in Orange County providing nutrition coaching, cooking classes, grocery store tours and food sensitivity testing. Dietitian specializing in anti-inflammatory diets including the ketogenic diet, gluten-free diet and dairy-free diet. Experience in nutrition coaching for weight loss, polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), lupus, Crohn's, thyroid and eating disorders.

Healthy Weight-Loss Habits by Nutritionist in Orange County

Healthy Weight-Loss Habits by Nutritionist in Orange County

Nutritionist located in Orange County providing nutrition coaching, cooking classes, grocery store tours and food sensitivity testing. Dietitian specializing in anti-inflammatory diets including the ketogenic diet, gluten-free diet and dairy-free diet. Experience in nutrition coaching for weight loss, polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), lupus, Crohn's, thyroid and eating disorders.

High-Fat, Low-Car Diet by Registered Dietitian in Orange County

High-Fat, Low-Car Diet by Registered Dietitian in Orange County

Nutritionist located in Orange County providing nutrition coaching, cooking classes, grocery store tours and food sensitivity testing. Dietitian specializing in anti-inflammatory diets including the ketogenic diet, gluten-free diet and dairy-free diet. Experience in nutrition coaching for weight loss, polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), lupus, Crohn's, thyroid and eating disorders.