Avoid Insulin Resistance And Manage Diabetes – Naturally

Insulin resistance is when the cell (particularly liver, muscle and fat cells, with the liver losing sensitivity first, then the muscle and then the fat cells) loses its responsiveness on the insulin receptor site. Your body adds more and more insulin to store fat. Overtime, the pancreas give up leading to type II diabetes.

In type II diabetes, your body isn’t making enough insulin and/or the cells are resistant to insulin causing too much sugar to remain in the blood.

Insulin is necessary for your body’s use of sugar. Sugar is the basic fuel for your cells in the body, and insulin takes the sugar from the blood into the cells.

A fasting blood glucose level higher than 100-125 mg/dL is not indicative of diabetes, but it can be indicative of insulin resistance, and is above normal levels. Optimum serum glucose range is 80-95. Fasting serum insulin levels should be below 10.

Controlling your insulin levels with diet/nutrition, lifestyle modifications, exercise and supplements are a powerful anti-aging strategy and a must for health, vitality, longevity and fat loss.

Insulin Resistance Symptoms and Conditions:

  • Brain fogginess and inability to focus
    • Elevated triglycerides. Optimum range: 70-110 mg/dL. (40 to 60% of total cholesterol). This can only be determined with a fasting test. Triglycerides are a component of fat stored in the tissue. Decreased HDL with elevated triglycerides is a more significant indicator of risk to heart disease than total cholesterol over 200 mg/dL. Triglycerides are often increased with dysinsulinism (Syndrome-X/Metabolic Syndrome), alcoholism (GGT/GGTP also generally increased) and diabetes.
    • Excess fat around your midsection or scapula area
    • Hypertension
    • Intestinal bloating
    • Low HDL levels. Optimum range: Males – above 55 mg/dL. Females – above 60 mg/dL. Should be > than 25% of total cholesterol. Most effective way to > HDL is > exercise.
    • Sleepiness and fatigue
    • Type II diabetes

When glucose (sugar) builds up in the blood instead of going into cells, it can cause problems:

  • Higher risk of Alzheimer’s disease (in diabetes, hyperinsulinemia doubles your risk for AD compared to people without diabetes).
  • Obesity
  • Over time, high blood glucose levels damage your eyes, kidneys, nerves or heart.

ALL hormones work in synergy with one another. The hormone you have the most control over is insulin. This is regulated by your diet.

What Causes Insulin Resistance and Diabetes?

  • A sedentary lifestyle
  • Calorie restriction, skipping meals, diet pills and a crap diet of fast foods, boxed, canned or microwaved foods. Unbalanced meals, high in carbohydrates, sugar and a low intake of fats and protein.
  • Drinking soft drinks and fruit juices.
  • Elevated lypogenic (fat storing) enzymes and decreased lypolytic (fat burning) enzymes
  • Lack of quality sleep
  • Stress and altered hormonal levels. Years of high adrenaline and/or cortisol levels due to poor nutrition and lifestyle habits.

DIET AND NUTRITION for insulin resistance/type II diabetes:

  • Allowed fruits in moderation include: tomatoes, avocados, berries, grapefruit, lemons, limes
  • Avoid agave syrup,, HFCS, Nutra Sweet and Aspartame products as they may trigger diabetes and obesity.
  • Cut carbohydrates and increase protein. Eat a diet of organic proteins, non-starchy vegetables and fats (fats slow down the insulin spike)
  • Eliminate all boxed, canned and microwavable foods.
  • Eliminate all refined carbohydrates, grains, dairy products, fast-acting sugars (fruit juices, soft drinks, high glycemic fruits and starchy vegetables), hydrogenated fats, alcohol, caffeine and tobacco).
  • Lemon and lime juice reduce the insulin index of the meal due to the flavonoids.
  • If it does not run around in the field, swim, fly or is not green – do not eat it!
  • Small mini meals 5-7x daily. Include smart fats and protein at each meal.
  • Sweeten with stevia, an herb, instead of sugar. Stevia will not elevate blood sugars.

SUPPLEMENTAL NUTRIENTS for insulin resistance/type II diabetes:

  • Vitamin D – Bio D Mulsion Forte
  • Chromium
  • R-Alpha Lipoic Acid (lowers glucose levels up to 30%)
  • Omega-3 Fish oil with 400 I.U. mixed tocopherols
  • Bio-Glycozyme Forte (use with hypoglycemia)
  • Fiber
  • GlucoBalance (use with elevated triglycerides and ‘ blood sugar)
  • ADHS (consider with increased glucose or triglycerides, adrenal cortical hyperfuntion.
  • Research and clinical feed back indicates that 7 Keto-DHEA is often effective in helping to ameliorate increased glucose levels. In addition, the 7-keto DHEA will not convert androgens to estrogens.
  • Resveratrol
  • Silymarin, an antioxidant that can improve liver function (especially the insulin resistant-liver cells) and blood sugar levels, have shown great promise in the effort to fully restore insulin sensitivity.
  • Zinc, magnesium and potassium deficiencies lead to insulin resistance.
  • Improves insulin sensitivity: CoQ 10, L-Carnitine, Taurine, L-Arginine, Glutathione

SUPPLEMENTAL BOTANICALS for Insulin Resistance/Diabetes:

Fenugreek/Flax seed Potion for diabetes and insulin resistance:

Take on an empty stomach first thing in the AM

1 T. freshly ground fenugreek seeds

1 T. freshly ground flax seeds

1 T. Liquid chlorophyll

16 ounces water

  • Gymnema Sylvestre before meals helps repair the pancreas and damage to liver and kidneys. Studies show that it may be able to help repair damage that has been done to the pancreas, as well as reduce the amount of insulin many diabetics need to maintain normal blood sugar levels. There is also research showing that it can reduce triglyceride levels and aid in weight loss.
  • Bitter Gourd
  • Banaba Tree Extract
  • Grape Seed Extract
  • Cinnamon – add to coffee with organic heavy cream to make you more insulin sensitive. Coffee has polyphenols which protect you from diabetes.
  • Tea: Green tea, Pau d’ arco, Astragalus, Burdock, Fenugreek

LIFESTYLE protocol for insulin resistance/type II diabetes:

  • Ensure healthy gut flora. Consider a CDSA (comprehensive digestive stool analysis).
  • Get to bed by 10pm and get up no earlier than 6am. Lack of sleep disturbs lipid profile, glucose metabolism, androgen production and blood pressure, immune system and memory.
  • Glucose levels are influenced by carbohydrate intake, stress, glandular and liver function. Serum Glucose: Optimum range – 80-95 mg/dL. 105 and > = adrenal issues
  • Monitor blood glucose levels at least 2 times a day and before eating meals. If you are exercising you will need to test your glucose levels more frequently.
  • Obtain fasting serum glucose and insulin levels.
  • Rule out food allergies with increased or decreased blood sugar.
  • Rule out heavy metal burdens, pesticides, other xenobiotics and inoculations. These can be locus to pancreatic dysfunction resulting in diabetes or hypoglycemia.
  • Take Care of Your Eyes – Diabetes is a leading cause of blindness. It can lead to Retinopathy and other eye problems such as cataracts.

EXERCISE protocol for insulin resistance/type II diabetes:

  • Begin some form of exercise routine. Walking is excellent for diabetes. A daily 3mph brisk walk decreases diabetes risk by 50%!
  • Strength training is far superior to steady state aerobic exercise to prevent obesity and improve insulin resistance. Steady state aerobic exercise ‘cortisol levels which ‘insulin levels.
  • The power of being active should never be underestimated: from a short five minute walk to forty-five minute strength training sessions, it all counts towards reducing and eliminating the pre-diabetes (insulin resistance) syndrome.

History and Health Effects of the Grapefruit Diet to Help Celebrities Lose Weight

With the recent trends in obesity and expanding body sizes, nutrition and weight loss have become popular topics in everyday conversations. The ever-expanding diet industry has spawned numerous products and off-the-wall nutrition tips to cash-in on our increasing obsession. Many of these “fad diets” make pseudo-scientific claims that appeal to people eager to drop a few pounds. The focus around one particular food group or a secret health food gives many of these diets the mystique to become popular. In recent history, one of the more popular of these fad diets has focused on consuming just grapefruit.

The grapefruit diet, also known as the Hollywood diet, originated in the United States in the 1930s. The diet centralizes on the claim that grapefruit has extraordinary weight-loss properties, such as a fat-burning enzyme. The grapefruit diet is considered unhealthy by most nutritionists due to the absence of essential vitamins and minerals and the low number of calories (less than 1,200 calories per day). On the other hand, incorporating a grapefruit with every meal can prove beneficial to the diet of a healthy person, provided that the dieter is not allergic to grapefruit or is taking medications that interact with citric fruit.

The grapefruit diet is a low-carb diet that generally occurs in a two-week cycle (12 days on the diet with 2 days off) that is repeated until the desired body weight is obtained. Advocates of the diet suggest that grapefruit helps burn body fat when eaten with foods high in dietary fat. Accordingly, the diet includes the consumption of meat, eggs, and fish, while restricting the consumption of sugars, sweet fruits, grains, and other carbohydrate sources. For best results, the diet requires three meals that are rich in fat and protein, complemented by one grapefruit, and with daily caloric intake below 1,200 calories.

The diet gained popularity in the 1970s after being mislabeled “the Mayo Clinic Diet.” Although the Clinic had no connection with the diet, the name-branding helped to bring the diet into popularity. In the 1980s, the diet was shortened to just 10 days with 2 break days, earning the nickname the “10-day, 10-pounds-off diet.” A 2004 study by the Florida Citrus department analyzed if grapefruit could aid in weight loss. Participants were encouraged to eat half a grapefruit with each meal and exercise regularly. The results were encouraging: a number of participants lost more than 10 pounds over 12 weeks. Note that the study focused on the addition of grapefruit to a healthy diet, not adopting a normal grapefruit diet. Nevertheless, a number of people claim short-term success with the diet, but long-term weight-loss maintenance still requires adoption of a healthy lifestyle.

Epilepsy and Nutritional Guidelines

Epilepsy is a fairly common condition that can cause repeated or prolonged seizures. These seizures can cause a number of different sensations, depending on the type of seizure that is involved and the severity of the epilepsy. It is important to note that not everyone who has a seizure has epilepsy and that not all seizures will be repeated. Because of some negativity surrounding the term epilepsy, some doctors now prefer to use the more neutral term seizure disorder.

There are two main categories of seizures: partial or generalized. In a partial seizure, there is a focus and only a small part of the brain is affected, while in a general seizure, more of the brain is involved. A simple partial seizure may cause a change in consciousness but not a loss of consciousness. Complex partial seizures typically involve unconsciousness.

The most serious and severe type of seizure is the grand mal seizure, a generalized seizure that involves the motor systems in the brain and involves convulsions. The grand mal seizure is marked by a tonic phase (forceful contractions of the muscles) and a clonic phase (slow, jerking movements). In addition, there are less severe types of seizures, including the petit mal seizure, which is also called the absence seizure and may be dismissed simply as daydreaming unless the actual diagnosis is made.

Epilepsy may be related to another problem, including a head injury, a brain tumor, a brain infection or a stroke. However, less than half of the people who have been diagnosed with epilepsy or seizure disorder even know why they have it at all. It is important that the disorder be recognized and diagnosed so that treatment can be started – without proper care, the seizures will become progressively more frequent and may become more severe. The doctor will typically rule out other disorders and diseases before diagnosing epilepsy because in its mild or early stages it can mimic other disorders.

The Symptoms of Epilepsy:

– You may notice strange smells or sounds. You may also have double vision.

– You may lose control of your muscles

– You may fall, twitch or jerk.

– You may stare-off into space and be unaware of it.

– You may faint.

In most cases, epilepsy is treated with medication that is meant to reduce or control the seizures. Some of the medications can cause other side effects, so the doctor must experiment with different types and different dosages so that the right control with the fewest side effects can be found. There are other treatment options for seizure disorders, including a special diet, surgery which is meant to remove the damaged tissue in the brain and the implantation of a device which is called a vagus nerve stimulator. This sends signals in the neck to help control the seizures.

The Special Diet

The diet suggested by doctors is called the ketogenic diet, which is high in fat and low in carbohydrates. In a ketogenic diet, the body does not burn carbohydrates for energy like it normally would, but burns fats instead. When the body burns these fats, it produces a carbon substance that is called ketones. In a seizure disorder, the ketones are thought to help suppress seizure activity. (Around 30% of the children who were put on the ketogenic diet have complete seizure control, while another 40% have enough control to continue with the diet).

The ketogenic diet is typically prescribed for a period of around two years and then carbs and other nutrients are gradually added back in. During the time spent on the diet, vitamins and minerals will have to be supplemented because the diet is deficient in a number of these nutrients, especially calcium and vitamin C. The diet has been criticized by a number of health groups because of the high fat content, however, there have not been any problems noted with heart disease or growth retardation for the children. Because childhood obesity is a major concern and there are so many children who have diabetes and other weight-related conditions, the possible benefits of the ketogenic diet must be weighed against its risks.

Other Dietary Considerations

Children and adults who have seizure disorders must try to avoid the artificial sugar called aspartame if it increases seizure activity. Aspartame does cause seizures in people with a metabolic disorder called phenylketonuria. This disorder does not allow the amino acid phenylalanine to be digested and used properly. (Phenylalanine is an essential amino acid which must be supplied by food and supplement sources. It is converted in the body to the non-essential amino acid tyrosine).

People with seizure disorders may also have some food sensitivities and food allergies that they should be aware of. In some cases, these foods may even trigger the seizure activity in the first place. Common foods that can trigger these reactions include dairy foods, including cheese, citrus fruits, wheat and food additives like tartrazine and benzoic acid. The level of food sensitivities can vary from person to person and the person can be eating these foods every day without knowing that they are sensitive to them. It is important to find out if there are food allergies that can trigger or have triggered seizure activity.

Protein supplements may be suggested in the ketogenic diet, however, supplements should only be started at the advice of a doctor. It is important to find the right supplement, especially if there are food sensitivities or other issues as well. Whey protein, for instance, may be difficult to digest if there is any problem with lactose intolerance. Soy or rice protein may be better suggestions in this case; rice protein is considered to be hypoallergenic and may be the best solution. Egg protein may be acceptable as a supplement as well. Protein bars may be suggested, however, the ingredients should be read carefully so that they do not contain any of those that might be considered to be problematic for the person with seizure disorders.

Doctors also suggest supplementing vitamin E, a powerful antioxidant that fights the damages of free radicals that may increase seizure activity by interfering with normal brain cell activity. Selenium is a mineral that is also beneficial in controlling seizures. Good food sources of selenium include mushrooms, broccoli, cabbage, fish, garlic, onions and whole grains. If lactose is not a problem, whey protein helps by supplying the enzyme glutathione, which is an antioxidant that is important for the immune system. Folic acid should be included because some of the medications that are used to treat seizures may deplete many of the B complex vitamins. Folic acid is the supplemental form of the naturally occurring folate.

Performance Nutrition For Wrestlers After Cutting Weight

Wrestlers and fighters cut weight for competition so they can have an advantage in combat. Whether you’re a youth, high school, college or professional athlete, being the largest competitor in your weight class can make all the difference in winning or losing the match. This often involves rapid weight cutting for the weigh-in, followed by replenishing the body back to its normal weight or preferably even heavier, hopefully giving you a size and strength advantage. While cutting weight will get you into the tournament, the replenishment process is equally as important as it will definitely impact your performance. Eating junk food or fast food directly after hard dieting or fasting is like emptying your car’s engine and then refilling it with sand or contaminated gas. The first fuel you put in your body after emptying it will be exactly what’s used for its first run; the food choices you make will determine whether you shine or gas on the mat.

When it comes to performance nutrition, timing is equally important as what you eat. Athletes who get to weigh in the day before their competition have a tremendous advantage over those who must compete an hour or two later. Depending on how severe the weight cut, it can take up to 12 hours (or longer) to get completely replenished back up to a desired body weight. With the right foods, strategy and planning, this process can be done effectively much faster, however the longer you have to recover from a hard weight cut the better. It’s common for high school wrestlers to weigh in Friday afternoon to compete on Friday night, have to make weight again Saturday morning for another tournament all day Saturday. Often when this is the case, the athlete is given an allowance of 1-3 lbs. for the Saturday meet, however this is a situation that must be managed carefully. Replenishment for the Friday competition must be controlled so it’s effective but not enough to throw off their weight cut for the next day.

After weighing in, choose foods that will be absorbed quickly and provide the best fuel for your upcoming performance. While protein is extremely necessary during the weight cut to prevent the loss of muscle mass, it has little place in the replenishment process. Protein will not give you the energy you need to perform on the mat and will only take up room in your stomach. Carbohydrates are the best types of food to eat for an upcoming competition after a weight cut. However avoid simple sugars that are overly processed like candy, cookies, snack cakes, Little Debbies, etc. Foods like this will give you an uncontrolled fast spike of energy followed by a crash of sleepiness and lethargy. Choose carbohydrates from two different categories to replenish the body with good weight and the best, most usable fuel. Clean, starchy carbs such as sweet potatoes and rice are excellent for filling the muscles with glycogen for even released energy to be used in the next few hours of the meet. Breads and bagels are secondary choices however are sweet and filling and also work well.

For faster energy, fresh, juicy fruit is great and very rejuvenating to the wrestler who’s survived an arduous weight cut. Apples, grapes and oranges are sweet, delicious and satisfying when in season. Bananas and prunes are also packed with potassium and natural sugar to be used for energy in the next hour of performance. Other foods that are good quick energy choices for replenishing the body are graham crackers, animal crackers and even yogurt however these are secondary and should not be filled up on. While fats are filling and satisfying to eat, they should be eaten in very small amounts or even avoided as they will slow down the absorption of sugars needed for energy. Too many will also give the wrestler a heavy, sluggish feeling in their gut. Wrestlers eating peanut butter sandwiches on white bread is a common sight at many tournaments, however this is an error. While this food is sweet, filling and easy to fix, peanut butter can sit heavy in a wrestler’s stomach while the gluten in the white bread slows the motility of the gut to a standstill.

For the fastest and most complete replenishment after a weight cut, divide your carbs into a number of small meals and try to resist gorging yourself. Forcing too much food into the gut at one time will give it more than it can handle and cause a temporary blockage, slowing down absorption and making the athlete sick, sometimes feeling heavy, lethargic and even nauseous. If the athlete had to restrict water to make his weight, the first thing in his mouth should be at least 16 oz. of water, then he can start eating. A great strategy is to combine both simple and complex carbs in a controlled volume over a period of time. For example, after drinking water the first meal would be 1½ – 2 cups of white rice with honey and a piece of fresh fruit. Sixty to ninety minutes later, eat another 1½ cups of white rice + honey, some graham crackers and more water. For a third meal, eat more carbs primarily however go ahead and add some protein as well. An example would be another 1½ cups white rice + honey, a tangerine and 3-4 oz. of lean turkey breast.

Feeding the body small meals of dry carbs combined with drinking water like this will shuttle glycogen and fluid into the muscles quickly and effectively. After the body has gone without food and/or water for 8-12 hours (common practice for cutting weight), the fuel we put into it directly after will determine its upcoming performance. Replenishing with this strategy leaves athletes energized and ready to go after the first 1-2 meals; they feel alert and light, not bogged down by a bunch of heavy foods laden with fat and preservatives in their gut. Adding a bit of protein to the third meal helps to slow down the absorption of the carbs after the muscles have been replenished from the first two. This will allow fuel for later as well as a more full feeling that lasts a bit longer. After not eating protein for this long, it’s also important to start feeding the body amino acids again to help muscles recover after competing. The third meal can also contain some fats if you want however better without or with very little as they have little to do with immediate performance and only act to slow you down.

While cutting weight may be what gets you into the competition, if you don’t have a strategy of replenishment, you will be weak, tired and unable to perform at your best.

Using a strategy like the one noted above will ensure you are fully replenished, feeling great and ready to go for your first match. Focus on a mixture of fast acting starchy carbohydrates combined with natural simple carbs and eat this in a number of small meals to ensure the body completely absorbs each one. Drink plenty of water so the muscles will shuttle both fluids and glycogen into storage for quick action and immediate performance. Do this repetitively 2-3 times based on fullness, energy levels and your competition schedule. Avoid fats to prevent slowing down absorption of nutrients and that heavy, sluggish feeling common to these types of foods. After 2-3 carb only meals, add some protein to a later meal to aid in recovery after competing and provide a slightly slower digestion of carbs for energy later in the day.

Volleyball and Basketball – Agility, Quickness, and Vertical Jump

Volleyball and Basketball, two sports so different, and yet so much alike. Both need to focus on a balanced training program, that targets specific groups of muscles. The training needs to ensure that your agility, quickness, and vertical jumping ability are brought to your maximum. You need to begin with your attitude and mental strength towards your regular workouts.

Your attitude and your mental strength will be tested. If being on the top level of competing is where you want to be, then you have to work for it. If your attitude and your mental strength are not focused, you’ll never become all you can be. Your attitude helps you to focus, and your mental strength makes you focus. Only when both are in place, will you excel to your full potential.

Maybe the most important part of any training program is nutrition. What lots of athletes don’t realize is that training isn’t what builds your muscles, the correct nutritional program does. When your nutrition is properly regulated, every part of the body is tuned and injuries are kept down. Short cuts cannot be taken when it comes to nutrition.

A personal trainer that knows what works and what doesn’t is a plus. But not everyone agrees, thinking that doing a few exercises 4 or 5 times a week is all that’s needed. The unfortunate thing is that you can workout on your own and really feel the burn, but you may not be training the proper muscle and fiber groups for your particular needs.

Many promising athletes simply give up pursuing their dreams because of little or no improvement. What many times is the case is that they haven’t been training properly, and its got nothing to do with their ability. There’s more to training than just training, you have to know how to train correctly. And its your responsibility to understand how to train right, and if the program your following is the right one. If it feels wrong, then its wrong!

Vegan Cooking School Options

So you’re vegan and have this passionate love of food. You would like to pursue this passion further, but you’re not sure what the vegan cooking school options are out there. Happily, there are plenty! There are quite a few schools that focus on plant-based meals, and many that aren’t exclusively vegan can be geared toward you, so you won’t find yourself chopping chickens and preparing fish if you’re not into that.

There are many casual plant-based cooking classes around the world if you’re looking for something just for fun without any fancy certification. In this article, though, I focus more on professional programs that have varying degrees of intensity. Some require only a little time and money if you don’t want to be a professional chef; others will take you the full distance to running your own kitchen.

Without further ado and in no particular order, here’s a list of some popular schools around the world, with some information about each.

Living Light Culinary Arts Institute
Where is it? Fort Bragg, California
What do they offer? 100% vegan and raw food instruction
When do the programs run? Multiple times a year, depending on the program
Website: rawfoodchef.com

The Living Light Culinary Arts Institute is located in a small coastal community on the Mendocino coast. If you love the ocean, temperate weather, and raw vegan cuisine, you’ll love this school. Run by Cherie Soria, the “mother of raw food”, this is THE raw foods institute. This is the one that draws people in from all around the world and produces top-of-the-line celebrity chefs of all kinds.

There are several types of courses, including a Gourmet Chef Certification Series (6 weeks), Advanced Instructor Training Certification Series (4 weeks), Raw Food Nutrition Educator Series, and the full-out Professional Chef Series, which runs almost an entire year, including a 250-day internship at the school.

Many of the well-known raw food chefs around the world went to Living Light for their training, including Chad Sarno and Jennifer Cornbleet.

The Natural Gourmet Institute
Where is it? New York, NY
What do they offer? Public classes and professional chef training that are plant-based and vegan-friendly
When do the programs run? Inquire by e-mail on their website
Website: naturalgourmetinstitute.com

The Chef’s Training program they offer is an intensive, professional course which can be taken part-time or full-time, but runs 619 hours. This school does teach people how to prepare seafood, chicken and eggs, but if you’re vegan you can opt out of that. This school teaches a wide range of cooking styles, including how to ferment, prepare raw foods and macrobiotic foods, and even Chinese medicine and medicinal cooking. The emphasis is on whole, plant foods.

The Natural Gourmet Institute offers a fun Friday night dinner, where the people enrolled in the school prepare a fine-dining experience for the general public at big, communal tables (with candlelight!), so if you’re in the area, you could swing by and see what it’s all about.

The Matthew Kenney Academyformerly the 105 Degrees Academy
Where is it? Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
What do they offer? Chef certification program in raw foods
When do the programs run? Monthly, or several times a year for the more advanced classes
Website: kenneycuisine.com

Matthew Kenney offers very small and personal raw food chef’s training classes (typically 4-8 people). It’s designed for beginners and chefs alike.

There are two 4-week training sessions – Level 1: Fundamentals of Raw Cuisine, and Level 2: Advanced Raw Cuisine. The Level 1 courses run every month and is Monday to Friday, 9am – 3pm. The Level 2 course runs 4 times a year and is the same hours as the Level 1 classes.

Cordon Vert School
Where is it? Altrincham, Cheshire, UK
What do they offer? Vegetarian leisure classes and workshops, a diploma program for professional chefs only
When do the programs run? Several times throughout the year; programs are short
Website: cordonvert.co.uk

The Cordon Vert School offers classes at their Vegetarian Society headquarters, and they even have rooms for lodging. They have a variety of vegetarian courses, ranging from 1 to 2 day workshops, classes for leisure, and professional classes. Their professional diploma class, a week in duration, is only available to professional chefs. However, their workshops and leisure courses are open to the general public, and occur frequently throughout the year.

Natural Epicurean Academy of Culinary Arts
Where is it? Austin, Texas
What do they offer? Full professional chef program that is vegan-friendly, public classes
When do the programs run? Begins every August and February
Website: naturalepicurean.com

This school specializes in vegetarian, vegan, macrobiotic, ayurvedic and raw food preparation and cuisine. They offer a full 900-hour professional chef training program. All of the training takes approximately a third of a year, if you jump straight from training into internship. This is an intensive course that will fully prepare you to work in a natural kitchen.

They also offer public classes, though they’re sparse and seldom due to the emphasis on the professional chef training program.

The School of Natural Cookery
Where is it? Boulder, Colorado
What do they offer? Professional training as a foundation course, with the option to go further
When do the programs run? Most are in the Fall and Spring
Website: naturalcookery.com

The foundation course at the School of Natural Cookery is a 16-week diploma course where you learn fundamentals, bread making, gastronomy, nutrition and more. If you achieve a very high mark in this course, you may take a 4-week personal chef course or teacher training course. However, in order to pursue the teacher training course, you must have finished their classes as well as have five years experience with natural food.

Courses are typically offered for a spring semester and a fall semester and run the duration of a typical school semester.

Vegan Culinary Academy
Where is it? Anguin, California
What do they offer? Online courses and a 1000 hour professional apprenticeship
When do the programs run? Anytime
Website: veganculinaryacademy.com

There are two major highlights of this school – first, someone who is looking for a professional apprenticeship opportunity will find it here, and it can be completed in six months to two years depending on how much you work, and second, they offer a distance learning program. The online program requires only that you have a camera and a computer with internet, and each student gets personal attention from the instructors in addition to all of the class materials and lessons. The apprenticeship is geared toward those who are already chefs, dietitians or food service directors.

Heaven on Earth Vegetarian Institute
Where is it? Hamilton-Stoney Creek, Ontario
What do they offer? A vegan, macrobiotic and ayurvedic 3-module program
When do the programs run? Mid-October to mid-March for all 3 modules
Website: heavenstudio.ca

This institute offers a Holistic Health Consultant & Cooking Certification program that runs in 3 modules and goes far beyond cooking. It delves into many aspects of holistic health, including yoga, pranayama, diet and lifestyle changes for preventing diseases, and of course healthy food preparation. All of the cooking is vegan with the exception of one class, where fish is included.

Natural Kitchen Cooking School
Where is it? Mercerfield, New Jersey, Haddonfield, New Jersey and New York City
What do they offer? A natural chef training program
When do the programs run? October to May, one weekend each month
Website: naturalkitchenschool.com

This school has several locations and occurs during weekends, making it more accessible. The class sizes are kept small (12 or less) so personal attention and assistance can be given.

This list is by no means comprehensive, but it does cover the major vegan-friendly cooking schools out there. Every year, more and more small classes pop up in different cities, so if you’re just looking for some basic instruction and have no interest in pursuing a career in cooking, check out what your city (or nearby city) has to offer. If you are looking to get serious with preparing that awesome vegan food, there are a few great choices on this list that could help you achieve your dreams.

10 Top Notch Ideas For CNA Inservices

As a nursing supervisor, you are all too familiar with the basic (and often mandatory) inservice information presented to nursing assistants. At health care organizations across the U.S., CNAs sit through lessons on standard precautions, abuse and neglect, confidentiality and fire safety. Other common topics include nutrition, pain management and a variety of disease processes. Without question, these are all necessary inservices for nursing assistants.

However, to develop a team of top-notch CNAs, it’s important to go beyond what is necessary or mandated. Coming up with pertinent topics can be a challenge when you’re trying to fit inservice education into your already packed schedule. Here are some ideas for inservices that will get your nursing assistants thinking outside the box-and have a real impact on the quality of their client care.

1. Teach about Being Assertive

Top-notch CNAs are assertive people. They understand the difference between communicating passively, aggressively and assertively. They use their assertiveness skills to deal with difficult people and challenging situations. And, because they respect the rights of others without ignoring their own rights, they are excellent team players. Consider presenting an inservice that includes a “personal assertiveness assessment” so that your nurse aides can gauge their current communication style.

2. Examine Conflict in the Workplace

Try teaching your CNAs how to deal with on-the-job conflict. Provide them with practical tips for resolving conflict. Be sure to cover the dangers of gossip and bullying in the workplace and how they can handle conflicts with supervisors and clients. Armed with this information, your CNAs will focus less on “workplace politics” and more on the needs of their clients.

3. Discuss Maintaining a Professional Distance

One of the toughest things for anyone in nursing is to provide TLC to clients without overstepping professional boundaries. A top-notch CNA knows the difference between personal and professional relationships and can recognize the warning signs that professional distance has been lost. Giving an inservice on this issue will help your nursing assistants be caring without veering from the plan of care.

4. Promote the CNA/Nurse Relationship

In the same way that the relationship between nurses and physicians continues to evolve, so does the relationship between nurses and nursing assistants. Outstanding CNAs understand the importance of delegation, assertive communication and mutual respect. They know how to give a great report, how to make the most of their performance review and how to work together with nurses as a team. Consider presenting this information to your CNAs and your nurses for a real boost to nursing teamwork.

5. Practice Time Management Skills

Why are some CNAs better than others at completing their work on time? Nursing assistants who strive for excellence have learned how to avoid time wasters like procrastination, a lack of focus and a negative attitude. Help your CNAs become time savers by teaching them about setting goals and priorities and providing them with practical tips that help them work efficiently-whether they work in a facility or in clients’ homes.

6. Review the Normal Aging Process

During their short initial training time, nursing assistants learn a few basics about the human body. However, in order to enhance their observational skills, it’s good to give them more details about how humans age. Try presenting the information by body system. Talk about the lifestyle choices that slow aging and those that speed it up-and remind your CNAs how they can help their elderly clients enjoy a good quality of life.

7. Discuss End of Life Care

To be outstanding, CNAs should be able to handle the full spectrum of life, including the dying process. Give your aides information on the end of life, such as how to recognize symptoms that signal death is near, how to provide comfort for dying clients and their families and how to care for the body once death has occurred. Consider including information on death and cultural diversity and the stages of grief.

8. Brush Up on Mouth Care

Top-notch CNAs understand the importance and benefits of good oral hygiene and how it can affect not just the quality of their clients’ lives, but also their overall health. How about presenting an inservice that goes beyond the mouth care protocol for your workplace? Give plenty of tips for performing oral hygiene, dealing with dentures, and observing for oral and dental problems.

9. Delve into Basic Human Needs

To enhance your nursing assistants’ sense of empathy, give them an overview of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. During the inservice, review the five levels of basic human needs, how the levels relate to each other and how illness affects a person’s place in the Hierarchy. With a greater understanding of what makes people “tick”, your aides will excel at providing holistic, client-centered care.

10. Talk about Cost-Efficient Care

While cost-efficiency is always important in health care, it’s especially vital in today’s economy. Plan an inservice that provides practical tips for how nursing assistants can save money throughout their daily client care. Be sure to cover how to minimize waste and how time management, healthcare associated infections and medical errors affect the bottom line. Top-notch CNAs know that saving money today means better working conditions tomorrow!

Try incorporating a few of these topics into your current inservice schedule and see what happens. When inservice education goes above and beyond the norm, it spurs critical thinking, enhances the quality of client care, and encourages professionalism on the part of your aides.

Why Are Salmon So Special?

The crystalline waters of Alaska host one of the world’s most valuable resources: healthy, natural, nutritional fish. Alaska has recognized the importance of their marine life, and has taken firm measures to ensure that the waters around their 34,000 miles of coastline remain pure, and that the fish living in those waters are harvested in a way that is sustainable and eco-friendly.

That’s a lot to brag about when Alaska salmon are in such high demand. Alaska’s response to this demand has been measured and responsible, ensuring that the world can continue to enjoy wild salmon for generations to come. What is that makes these fish so special, and the focus of so many great grilled salmon recipes?

For one thing, salmon is a rich source of protein and Omega-3 fatty acids, while being low on the harmful saturated fats and Omega-6 oils found in other animals. Alaska salmon live a rigorous natural life, and this vitality ensures lean fish with high quality texture and taste. The clean water and healthy organisms keep the salmon free of toxins and impurities in their environment and diet.

Look up grilled salmon recipes, and you will consistently find sources from health-food and low-calorie sites and cookbooks, proudly displaying the nutritional facts of each recipe. These sites will tell you not just how to cook salmon steaks, but will also likely boast about the variety of essential vitamins, minerals, and nutrients packed into a savory salmon feast.

Salmon can be cooked fresh, thawed, or frozen, and this means that it can be enjoyed year-round, even long after the fishing season has ended for a given year. Grilling salmon is a summer-time activity as American as flipping burgers or baking apple pie, and is a whole lot healthier to boot. The versatility of salmon is another thing that makes it so special. It works in any cuisine, from Asian to French, and can be served as a main entrée, or worked into appetizers, salads, and soups. Just crack a cookbook; you’ll be amazed at the number of grilled salmon recipes.

You don’t need anyone to tell you that salmon makes a delicious meal, but if you have been wondering what makes this fish so special, remember that Alaska salmon is also a highly nutritional food, and represents a sustainable practice that you can be proud to participate in.

Bariatric Athlete Fuel Guide Without Carb Loading

We often hear that in order to fuel workouts and races an athlete needs to carb load. And for good reason, carbohydrates are the body’s main fuel source. However, this practice could be a threefold problem for bariathletes. For one, the word ‘load’ alone is not recommended for a small pouch. And when looking at the post-op macronutrient breakdown, protein is in the lead. Lastly, for those who have had the gastric bypass often can not tolerate carbohydrates because they induce dumping syndrome. So what is a bariathlete to do?

Although the body does prefer carbohydrates, loading per se may not be needed. More and more athletes are beginning follow a more balanced diet and continue to perform competitively. We recommend eating well throughout the day with a balance of carbohydrates, protein and fat at each meal.

First, take a look at the micronutrient density of your foods. Are you eating nutrient rich foods or are they many processed and stripped of its vitamins and minerals? Athletes often look past this because they tend to focus on calories and carbohydrates. Bariathletes also tend to forget about this but more due to thinking all their needs are covered in their vitamin and mineral supplements. The supplements cover your bariatric needs, but your nutrient needs increase when you start exercising. And no, we don’t recommend taking more supplements to cover this, we recommend whole foods because your body is able to absorb and utilize these nutrients so much more efficiently from its natural sources.

Because a bariathlete can only eat so much at a given time it is important that meals and snacks do not have more than 4 hours between them. Eating frequently assures your fuel takes are full and can eliminate the need to ‘load’. The key a again is a mix of carbohydrates and protein to meet both your bariatric and athletic needs.

So remember, you are now an athlete and food is the fuel that allows you to live the new and exciting lifestyle you choose. Opt for more mixed meals while still maintaining adequate protein intake. Select more whole, fresh, nutrient rich foods to provide you with the vitamin and minerals you body needs to perform optimally. Good luck and have fun!

*For more specific details for your individual needs, contact us today for a personalized meal plan. LeaCrosetti@BariAthletes.com

Unbalanced Force Factor Fitness Training Method For Men – Burn Fat, Gain Muscle

How To Attain Fitness Euphoria

The 5 Steps

Have you ever wondered why some people LOVE to exercise while others have no motivation to even get started? Have you ever wondered HOW they got that love and how you never found it? Let’s start by getting rid of one of the myths of the “workout” world. I read over and over again, “If they made a pill to get us healthy and lose excess weight, then we’d all be happy.” Not so. Think about that statement. Sure, you might get healthy and be able to lose weight. But that “euphoric” feeling of achievement and accomplishment released by the body’s own endorphins… Can only come from your own fitness efforts. THAT’S what it is all about. So…you want to know how to attain your very own state of personal euphoria? There are FIVE things in life that can help you to lose fat, change your body, better your health…AND improve the world and those around you.

STEP ONE

Find the belief in yourself.

Develop “self efficacy”. That is, the belief in your own self promises. The knowledge that once you make a commitment, you will follow it through to completion. Many times when we ask ourselves a question–especially when it comes to our health and wellness, we REALLY do already know the answer! It’s the belief in YOU that determines whether or not we accept the right answer. Think about all that you have learned from where you have been and what you have experienced. Embrace all the RIGHT lessons previously logged into your memory bank…ready and available for immediate recall. Believe in where you are going and how you intend get there. You KNOW the answers. No one can learn or teach you better than yourself. Are you ready to receive your own best advice? The Unbalanced Force Factor Training System was developed and based with this principle in mind. The principle of… SELF-EFFICACY.

STEP TWO

Baby Steps

Bite-sized chunks. Manageable increments. Measurable milestones. Achievable Workload. “Do” able tasks. Realistic expectations. In order to achieve anything in this life, we must first define our short-term goals. We must be able to determine the difference in short, medium, and long-term expectations when setting realistic goals. Life is an ultra marathon. But the first thing we must achieve…is taking that very first step. In order to get to that first step, there must be a mind-altering decision. The decision that you are ready to do what it takes. Plan your daily meals. Make efficient use of your daily plan. Prioritize the things that consume your time. List them according to what tasks will make the biggest impact at the end of the day. And the most important thing to plan on for the day… Make time for YOU. Now, I don’t mean treat yourself to excess indulgences. I mean give yourself permission to take the time for your personal health. Take this all-important matter into your own hands. Develop the discernment to know the difference in high priority things. Your workout should be at the top of this list! The Unbalanced Force Factor training system will enable you to reach personal fitness euphoria once you make it your priority!

STEP THREE

Understand Nutrition

It’s true that nutrition is a science. But that doesn’t mean rocket science. If it’s as simple as just following the guidelines as outlined in The Unbalanced Force Factor, or if you actually follow the advice of a registered dietician or medical physician… We have to fuel the body correctly. Use these very simple guidelines: Think about your health. Avoid dwelling on tastes or “enjoyment”. You can refine your taste palate to enjoy the right foods once you learn and accept the difference that they can make for your health. Think about your looks. Avoid getting caught up in the gluttony of buffets, fast foods, convenience and refined sugar products. Learn to enjoy… Lean meats Fresh fruits Fresh vegetables Whole grains Many wonderful nutritive spices If you want to make a change and you can only have one choice… Change the way you eat. The Unbalanced Force Factor can then work to take you to that euphoric level once you have the foundation of proper nutrition.

STEP FOUR

Focus and Visualization

Mental preparation is prerequisite to making changes. Once you can SEE the future, you can achieve it. See the trees BEFORE you see the forest. We must get the proper sleep. We must be able to rest when needed. We must be able to relax. Think about how you feel after a peaceful vacation from the normal pace and everyday responsibilities. Implement these practices on a daily basis. You simply do them in a shorter time frame. Take mini vacations with mental breaks to visualize what you desire. See it coming to you. When you are rested, and your health starts to improve it is very attractive to the people around you. In fact, it’s MAGNETIC. And if those around you feel good, you feed yourself with all your own positive energy generated. See your health. See your future. Get the proper rest, relaxation, and sleep you require. THEN… Have fun training with the Unbalanced Force Factor.

STEP FIVE

Act On Your Plan

It has been said that: “If you fail to plan… You plan to fail.” Push yourself to achieve goals and stick to plans. Break out of your old patterns. Teach yourself to accomplish the plan. Read something successful everyday. Listen to positive things daily. Avoid fear of new schooling, new ideas and concepts. Learn as much as you can in every situation. Lay the groundwork Work the plan.

Implement and attain all 5 steps to Fitness Euphoria. Embrace The Unbalanced Force Factor training and lifestyle method.