Terre Pruitt's Blog

In the realm of health, wellness, fitness, and the like, or whatever inspires me.

  • I teach Nia, yoga and stretch!

    Nia: Thurs at 9 am

    Yin Yoga: Mons at 11:30 am

    Gentle Yoga: Tues at 10:30 am and Thurs at 6:00 pm

    Stretch: Thurs at 10:30 am

    Please see my website for details! I sub for the City of San Jose and the YMCA so check my website for dates and times!

    I am also available for private Nia / yoga / Personal Training!

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Posts Tagged ‘healthy diet’

Seven Possibly Memory Helpers

Posted by terrepruitt on June 23, 2015

I think that with our busy life styles and the fact that there are multiple ways to communicate and multiple devices that which can draw our attention we might feel very forgetful at times.  But really how can we forget what we never really (REALLY) paid attention to?  Sometimes I am on autopilot . . . my muscles can do things while I am not even paying much attention to the task.  While I am brushing my teeth I might be thinking about what I am going to wear.  While I am gathering my clothes, I could be thinking about the next task.  While I am getting dressed I could be thinking about the Nia routine I am going to teach.  I grab my phone and put it in my purse while I am thinking about something else.  Then I step outside and wonder, “Do I have my phone?”  Then I blame it on my memory.  I FORGOT I grabbed it and stuck it in my purse.  But I don’t always believe it is memory, I think it is more that I wasn’t paying attention to the fact that I put my phone in my purse.  I really believe that so much multi-tasking makes us believe we have bad memories.  Or the fact that we have so much on our minds already, makes us think we have bad memories.  But whatever the case, I know that I don’t mind doing things thought to help our brains remember.  There is advice out there on ways to improve your memory or prevent memory loss.

The  Mayo Clinic has a list of seven things to help the memory.  I bet you have heard them before, but . . . I also bet it doesn’t hurt to be reminded:

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose,  Nia at the San Jose Community Centers, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex City of San Jose, San Jose Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, PiYo1-Stimulate your brain and memory by staying mentally active.

Reading, doing brain puzzles, driving a different route to a familiar place, or learning how to play a musical instrument are ways to keep that brain active.  The idea would not necessarily be for you to play a concert or a recital, but the act of learning keeps that brain stimulated.

2-Being social not only helps your brain, but it can help stave off depression and stress.  If you are lucky enough to be social with close friends then it is a huge benefit to your well-being.

3-Being organized is a great way to help keep the “I forget everything” feeling at bay.  If you have a calendar to keep track of appointments and social events that helps you stay on track.  Also if yourliving space is organized you won’t find yourself misplacing things.  Certain things you use often or need on your way out should have a place; keys and wallet, for example.  If you always put them in one spot you won’t wonder where they are when you are about to walk out the door.

Being organized can also help you focus as you will not be wondering around looking for your keys you will know exactly where they are and be able to be aware.

4-Getting enough good quality sleep.  I believe sleep is good for so many things.  This is the time that our body gets to rest from the go-go-go of the day.  It is also a time where our mind, emotions, and self get to rest.  We are bombarded all day long with so many things . . . it is nice to let our bodies rest.

5-Eating healthy food.  Our bodies need nutrients to run properly so a healthy diet will help our brain function.

6-Exercising is also thought to help keep memory loss at bay.  This is due to the fact that exercise helps so many systems.  If your body is healthy this could contribute to a healthy brain/memory.  If the physical activity you do is something that requires skill, then you are putting your brain to work and that could be a double whammy.  If the exercise you do is something that you really like, then that could contribute to your mental well-being and that could be one way that exercise helps.

7-“Manage chronic conditions

Follow your doctor’s treatment recommendations for any chronic conditions, such as depression or kidney or thyroid problems. The better you take care of yourself, the better your memory is likely to be. In addition, review your medications with your doctor regularly. Various medications can impact memory.”

As you probably know, the brain is still a large mystery.  Science learns more everyday, but the cause of memory loss and diseases like Alzheimer’s are still unknown.  So they come up with a list of things we can do that they think might help.

And Yup, heard them before, right?  But . . . how many of them do you do?  Do you think that these things can perhaps help your memory?

Posted in Misc | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Beware Of the “DEADLY FLU EPIDEMIC”

Posted by terrepruitt on January 11, 2014

This is not a post about the pros and/or cons of vaccinations.  I know that vaccines are hot topic.  I am mentioning vaccines in this post because the news stories I have watched all say “get your vaccination”.  You do what you want in regards to the flu vaccine.  Just keep the McDonald’s Hot Coffee lawsuit in mind when you hear reports about the “DEADLY FLU EPIDEMIC”.  That is the one where the news media blasted all over that a woman was awarded $2.9 million for spilling hot coffee on herself while driving with the cup between her legs.  Stories made it sound like she sued because the coffee was hot.  At the time I never heard any details, did you?  My last post Details Lost – It Happens, Be Aware has information on that.  These posts were spawned because I have been out and about and I hear people talking about the flu “killing” people.  I hear fear.  To me, it SEEMS as if the media is based on fear.  To me it seems as if they want the public to live in fear.  It also seems, TO ME, as if there is an agenda out there to get the public to do certain things.  So I am just asking for people to think a little.  To remember that we are not presented with all of the facts.  And to note that even though all the information you might see is the same, that does not mean it is true.  So try not to panic.  Keep in mind that there are steps you can take to help keep you and your family healthy.  Don’t assume that getting the flu means death.  My feelings are …. although I do not know . . . .but I have a feeling that the people they are claiming “died of the flu” died of complications from the flu.  Which could be argued that they would not have died if they didn’t get the flu in the first place.  But they could have had compromised immune systems making any illness a danger to them.  I have not seen enough details in the news stories to know.

So . . . whether you get the shot or not it is smart to still do all the things you need to do to stay healthy and give your body a fighting chance.  I know that a lot of the things a body needs a person to do to keep it healthy might not be easy  — as in, many may claim they don’t have time . . . . but being sick takes a lot of time.  Being sick also exposes loved ones to the illness and they could have compromised immune systems and get more sick than you.  ALWAYS remember that taking time to take care of yourself is a great way to show others that you love them!  It is not a selfish act, it is good for EVERYONE when you are healthy.

Again . . . . take all the information the media is putting out there with a grain of salt.  And do what you need to do to stay healthy.  I recommend:

–Sleep.  Rest.  One of the biggest and best ways to assist your immune system.  Your body needs sleep.

–Exercise.  Exercise is another great way to boost that immune system.  Some believe you sweat toxins out, so you could be ridding yourself of the stuff that weighs down your immune system.  There are definitely immune boosting chemicals that get released when you exercise.  Plus . . . if you are getting a good workout in, it will help you sleep!**

–Healthy diet.  Eat fruits and vegetables.  Avoid overly processed foods.  Drink water.  Drink herbal teas.  Lemon water is good to help flush and refresh your system.  Avoid soda and excess of juices.

–Wash your hands.  All the time.

–Sneeze cough in the crook of your elbow, a tissue, or your hands (see the above) not into the air.

–Try to avoid sick people.  I know this is not always possible, but when it is, do it.  I find that now-a-days people are more understanding when you don’t want to hug them or shake their hand when they are sick.  In fact some will insist you don’t because they are sick.

What other ways can you avoid getting sick?  What do YOU do to keep yourself healthy?

**Nia is a GREAT way to exercise.  Check my website to learn more.  🙂

Posted in Misc | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Omega 3 – The Fat We Should Eat

Posted by terrepruitt on September 1, 2011

I have mentioned Omega 3 before, but I haven’t said a lot about it.  I thought sharing a few things about it would be nice.  Omega 3 is an essential fatty acid required by the body.  “Essential” means that our body must have it but can’t make it so we need to obtain the nutrient from our diet.  Since our cell membranes are made up of fatty acids it makes sense that our body needs fatty acids to function properly.  The key is making sure our bodies have the right kind of fat.  Omega 3 contains three fatty acids, a-linolenic acid (ALA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), and is considered a polyunsaturated fat.  Polyunsaturated fat, unlike saturated fat, does not harden at room temperature.  Wanting a fat that makes up cell membranes that does not harden is another thing that makes sense, right?  Nutrients and waste have an easier time passing in and out of a cell membrane with a liquid consistency than one that is solid.

Research has been done in regards to Omega 3 on diseases and ailments with varied results.  Studies continue to reveal Omega 3 helps reduce heart disease risk factors such as high cholesterol and high blood pressure.  Omega 3 helps reduce inflammation.  We know chronic inflammation is not good because it is linked with or even thought to be the cause of many diseases.   Omega 3 could help with autoimmune diseases of which inflammation is present such as asthma, rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, and diabetes.   With many diseases there is often multiple issues so it makes sense that if something helps with one thing it might help with another if it is a symptom or a result of a disease.  For instance, many people with diabetes have high cholesterol so, if Omega 3 helps lower the LDL and raise the HDL, that would be of assistance to someone with diabetes.  Science is continuing to discover things about Omega 3 and how each fatty acid has different effects on the body.

Omega 3 is interesting in that one of the three ALA is actually not used by the body until it is converted to the other two.  Some foods contain ALA, some contain EPA, and others contain DHA or a combination of them.  So as always recommended it is good to eat a variety of foods.  Eating a variety of foods containing Omega 3 will help ensure you get what you need.  Some of the food Omega 3 can be found in is cold water fish, flax seed, walnuts, and what some are calling “Omega 3 eggs”.  At present there is not a Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) for Omega 3, but the consensus is that Americans should be eating more.

According to a the World’s Healthiest Foods website:  “the National Institutes of Health recommended that people consume at least 2% of their total daily calories as omega-3 fats.”

You might have heard the claim that Canola Oil is a good source of Omega 3, but then you might have also heard the processing the rapeseed plant goes through and the way the oil is made actually burns off the Omega 3 and becomes transfat.  This is one of those things you might want to research and decide for yourself.  It is your health.

Other foods containing Omega 3: beans, olive oil, hemp seeds, kale, collard greens, spinach, soybeans, cloves, oregano, green beans — yay, not just fish!  I am not a fan of fish although, the Omega 3 in fish is hard to beat, so I probably should start eating it.

Like so many nutrients being discovered as being necessary almost everyday it seems as if the best way to get what the body needs is to eat a variety of foods.  The less we eat of over-processes and packaged foods the better.  Finding a balance is also important.  It just really sounds as if, from all the information I have read, Americans consume less Omega 3 than we should, so — to me — it sounds good to add more to my diet.  What about you?  Are there ways you can add more healthy foods that contain Omega 3 into your diet?

Posted in Food | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Yarrow

Posted by terrepruitt on December 14, 2010

I once mentioned to a friend that I had a cough or some congestion in my lungs/chest, she suggested I take yarrow.  She had said that it aides in lung health.  When I looked it up, I remember finding information supporting that, but that was some time ago.  I bought a bottle of capsules and took them on and off until they were gone.  When I tried to find it again I had a difficult time finding it.  It took me a long time to find another bottle.  I think this all happened over a period of two or three years.  So now here I am thinking I could post about it and the information I am finding on the internet is vast and interesting.

As with any supplement you are thinking about taking you should talk to your doctor so s/he can advise you of any adverse side effects that might occur when mixed with any medication you are currently taking.

As I look at the information out there today I cannot find but one thing that says it helps with “upper respiratory phlegm”, but not more about lung health.  There is a lot of information that says it helps with a lot of things that could be associated with lung health. It actually looks as if this herb does everything.  I see that it is used as an antiseptic and an astringent.

Information states that it aides in digestion and is used to treat inflammation.

It is used to treat colds, flu, and hay fever.  Since it is used as an anti-inflammatory then it makes sense that it would be a good thing to use if you have a cold, flu, or hay fever because inflammation is a symptom of those ailments.

Yarrow contains flavanoids which are linked to antioxidants.

It is used to help with muscle spasms, gas (both preventive and expulsion), and over production of sweat.

As with most herbs there are several ways to use or take Yarrow.  I myself have capsules and a liquid.  There are oils and teas and compounds that can be applied topically.

I think that some of the things that yarrow is stated to help might actually need medical attention so even though this herb sounds great be cautious and don’t necessarily substitute medical attention with an herb.  For me, even though herbs have side effects and we cannot always be certain of the purity of our herbs, I personally believe that herbs are a good thing to take as a supplement to a healthy diet.

What do you think about herbal supplements?

Posted in Flowers, Misc | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments »

Chocolate and Bacon

Posted by terrepruitt on July 20, 2010

So you might think this post is about chocolate and bacon–that is what the title might lead you to believe.  That is because I could not bring myself to state the truth; chocolate COVERED bacon.  Just the thought of it makes my stomach kind of contract.  I will be honest, I LOVE bacon.  I really do.  One time I was making something for a party that required bacon and I was jumping up and down saying to my husband, “Do you know what this means?  It means we have bacon!”  Ya see I don’t eat bacon that often because it is just not something I consider needed to be a part of a healthy diet.  So I was very excited to have to cook it for a recipe which would mean there would be at least a piece left.  After I cooked it and gave him some my husband realized why I was so excited.  It is yummy, but we don’t eat it often.

Chocolate, I am ok with.  I am not a chocoholic and I can live without it.  And some chocolate is DEFINITELY better than others.

I was talking with my friend about chocolate covered bacon and I was saying how disgusting I thought the thought of it was.  So, being an evil person disguised as a great person (ha, ha!) she bought me a piece.  She was walking down the street and was overwhelmed by the smell of bacon and realized it was coming from a candy shop.  So she bought me one.

She gave it to me and I just couldn’t eat it.  Just the THOUGHT of it grossed me out.  I put it away and forgot about it.  When I remembered it, my stomach did a cramping like flip-flop.  Ewwww.  Just the thought of it grosses me out.  What a horrendously unhealthy combination.

No, yes, however you say that, I am NOT the epitome of healthy eating, but I try to avoid the things I feel are the really glaringly obvious unhealthy stuff.  So my tummy was NOT wanting to try it.

As I was taking it out of the bag to take picture I noticed a piece broken off.  I tasted it.  It really doesn’t taste like anything but salty chocolate.  After I took the pictures I ate the small piece and let hubby have the other one.    This chocolate happens to be one of the ones I think it better than others.  But I couldn’t really taste the bacon as bacon.

To me, if I am going to eat bacon and have those calories and fat I want to eat the bacon and taste the bacon and enjoy the bacon.  Eating it covered in chocolate is a waste to me . . . but that is just me.  Everyone eats how they want and this is not how I choose to eat.  So chocolate covered bacon will not be one of the foods I have as a treat.

What about you?  Have you tried it?  Do you like it?  What chocolate covered salty food (or?) have you tried as a treat?

Posted in Food | Tagged: , , , , | 16 Comments »

Consumer Affairs

Posted by terrepruitt on March 27, 2010

I actually received a response to my feedback . . . or actually I received a response to the feedback form being completed.

I had asked Lea & Perrins about their Worcestershire Sauce and explained that it has been a staple so long in my house that it was not something I had checked the ingredients on.  Since I noticed it has High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) in it I would be on the path of moving from Lea & Perrins to a Worcestershire Sauce without HFCS. 

The response from the Heinz company told me that recently the media has brought to light HFCS and its “role in the U.S. diet”.

You see, they say U.S. Diet because a lot of companies don’t put HFCS in foods that are made for other markets.  It is primarily the U.S. that is subjected to HFCS. 

The response also stated that a lot of the articles attempted to link the consumption of HFCS to obesity.

Ok . . . . thanks for that information.  But I still am wondering why they are telling me this.  Do they automatically or defensively assume that the reason I don’t want to consume HFCS is because of “attempted links to obesity”?

Then they reminded me that excess calories without exercise is the reason for weight gain.  They feel it is incorrect to focus on a specific food or ingredient when talking about obesity.  Like the HFCS manufacturers the e-mail from Heinz said that “moderation” is the key.

The way I have chosen to moderate my intake of HFCS is by not consuming Lea & Perrins Worcestershire Sauce.  Since HFCS is in so many foods, I have to eliminate as many as I can so that I can achieve this wonderful thing that manufacturers and users of HFCS call “moderation”. 

Then the e-mail ended by telling me about the various Ketchup products they are coming out with.  Including one without HFCS.  (Because I asked about Ketchup?)

A lot of products have HFCS in them.  I can only control what is purchased and brought in our home.  When I go out to a restaurant, even if I order a salad, the dressing could have HFCS in it.  The bread on my sandwich could have HFCS in it.  The BBQ sauce, the ketchup, the mayonnaise, I don’t know, so I can only keep from purchasing products that I can read the ingredients of. 

I do not eat a totally healthy diet, but I try to eat healthy. I am trying to really cut down on OVERLY processed foods.  All of our food is processed, but I think it is the OVERLY processed, really chemically altered food, that is not very healthy.  I know it is not easy, but I am going to do what I can and that is all that I can do.

I wanted to share that I did get a response, as odd as I thought the response was, I wanted to let you know that they responded.

Posted in Food | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 8 Comments »