Happy New Year! I hope everyone had a spectacular holiday season and a safe, healthy New Year’s. If you’re anything like me, you’re facing 2018 with renewed optimism and goals. After all, January always feels like a fresh start to me. It’s a chance to focus on goals and really make those things happen that just seemed too difficult to focus on during the holidays. My motto for 2018: New Year, New Me!
My biggest goals for 2018 are weight-loss and improved health. Of course, like for so many, these things go hand-in-hand. So I’m taking the reigns and changing what I can, beginning with my weight. After a little more than a year with severe right foot pain, which did not allow for much, if any, exercise and the onset of early menopause, this body weighs 80 lbs more than it should. There, I said it! It’s mortifying to admit that I’ve allowed this to happen to me. But, the reality is that I did nothing to curb the weight-gain either. Yes, I’ve started and stopped diets several times, with only the best intentions. In fact, not only didn’t I didn’t stick to them, I went way off the deep-end feeding my stress, loneliness and sadness with chocolate, ice cream and chips. No more! New Year, New Me!
Today is day 8 of my life without sugar and dairy. For me, these are terrible villains; sugar feeds inflammation and is horribly addictive (artificial sweeteners are even worse) and dairy causes sinus and digestive issues, among other things. Unfortunately, since I seem incapable of drinking my coffee black, that also means I’ve said goodbye to coffee…truly one of my very favorite things in the world. It’s time to face the fact that these things are destroying my health and keeping me in a cycle of addiction that is very hard to break. With clean eating and exercise, I am hoping to find my old self hiding inside this fat suit. I’ll keep you posted.
Another thing I am doing to improve my health is to focus on alleviating liver toxicity. I know, this doesn’t seem very interesting or important. But the reality is that the liver is our body’s chemical processing plant. It processes 30% of the body’s blood every minute, removing harmful toxins and distributing necessary nutrients. So this is really where the old adage garbage in-garbage out stands true for our bodies. Whenever we eat, nutrients enter the blood which goes straight to the liver. Depending upon how many good nutrients we consume, the liver will be able to release the good nutrients or store them for later when we need the boost. I don’t know about you, but I haven’t been putting in a lot of good nutrients lately.
The liver has four basic functions. It works with the Gall Bladder (if you have yours which I no longer do) to process fats properly. The liver breaks down fat compounds and stores them for when you need them. It works to keep you energized by taking carbohydrates that have been broken down into glucose in the blood, and storing the glucose until you need it for extra energy between meals. The liver also removes the nitrogen from the proteins we eat, which rapidly changes into ammonia – a highly toxic substance. Finally, the liver houses many of the vitamins and minerals necessary to good health such as vitamins A, B12, D, E and K, and minerals like iron and copper.
Symptoms of Liver Toxicity include chronic fatigue (check), inability to lose weight or excessive weight-gain (check), bloating after meals (check), brain “fog” (check), and unexplained sensitivities to medications (double check!) Does any of this sound like something you are experiencing? If so, please don’t just let it go. Our liver health is just too important to our overall health. In fact, I am now supplementing my daily water intake with an herbal liver-boost. It’s time to show my liver how sorry I am for giving it nothing but garbage-in for the past year.
So that’s it! I’m off on my journey toward a new me. I’m investing in me so that I have the energy and joy to invest in my family. And maybe, just maybe, someone out there will want to come along. I’d love to hear from you and to encourage you on your journey. What’s your motto for 2018?