Sunday, January 19, 2014

Even Cow Girls Get the Blues

That is the title of a book I had to read in college. What it really means is that everyone can get the winter blues if you let yourself. This January may go on record with the largest snowfall in the month of January's history here in Michigan. It is fun, ridiculous and gorgeous when we get 10-12 inches of snow in one day...but we really don't want it to happen again.

I am pretty much done with winter after one dusting on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day and then one big one in January.

Old man winter of course has a different idea. Here in Michigan we will be seeing snow flurries until Easter Sunday.  How can we make it through? Here are some ideas to fuel your connections so that the winter blues do not set in:
  1. Host a wonderful brunch for friends for Valentines Day: You will be busy planning the menu, choosing the guest list, thinking about the table decorations and before you know it will be February 14th! I always host a Mother/Daughter Brunch on or around Valentines Day. I actually had requests to be added to the guest list. So awesome. (Remember I was a personal chef first!). The daughters were required to spend the night and help me cook for their moms. They served their mothers the next day and we have so many great memories over the years.
  2. Make a plan with some good friends to organize a "Ladies Who Lunch" group (or Men Who Lunch or dinner!). You can look forward to getting out of the house once a week for lunch until Spring. Try some new vegan or vegetarian restaurants in your area. Dress up like it is a fancy occasion and enjoy each others company from 11:30 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. if you can. This is very low cost therapy. You can even make new friends by asking each member to bring a person that no one else knows to one of the events. You can call it "Mystery Guest" day (Mystery Guest, not Mystery Date!).  Now that is some good clean fun.
  3. Plan a one night get-away for you and your spouse or a group of friends. It is always nice to get away from your routine in the winter if only for a day. Try Chelsea, Michigan and go to the Purple Rose Theater and stay at the bed and breakfast which sits right behind the theater. (The Chelsea House:
  4. Plan an awesome end of January Shopping Day with your best friend. The sale racks are full of 70% off merchandise that you can take hours to discover. Pick a favorite place for lunch(Nordstrom Salmon Fish Tacos are amazing!). End the day with a pedicure or massage at Nordstrom's or a local spa. This will help you recharge and get ready for two more months of winter.
  5. Invite two or more friends or family members to a "Cook and Share" with you on Saturday or Sunday. You each bring a great recipe and the ingredients for the recipe (double or triple depending on the number of people). You all cook each dish together, split up the servings and freeze so that you can have a few emergency meals to make your life easier.
See how fast the time went..... it is almost Spring. Don't let the winter blues sink in to your soul. Get busy connecting with friends and family.

To Your Best Health,

Denise Lovat
Certified Health Coach

I offer a free one-hour health history session: email me at In the subject line write, HEALTH HISTORY.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Crowd out the old habits and add in the GOOD habits this New Year!

Is it time to experiment with new foods, new exercise, new friends and new careers this new year?
If you are ready to treat yourself better this year, here are some tips to help you get started.
Any change you make regarding food or exercise is considered a "keystone behavior." This means that it will start to impact other areas of your life positively and before you know it, you will be transformed into a butterfly.  I hope that some of these tips hit a bulls-eye for you.

Cut Back These Add in These Benefits
Chips and Salt Snacks Raw toasted almonds, pecans, walnuts, hazelnuts, brazil nuts, pistachios, sunflower seeds, hemp seeds and chia seeds. Nuts and seeds have preventative effects on diabetes, heart disease, breast disease and manage body weight.
Red Meat Mushrooms of all types Mushrooms have the texture of meat and can aid in weight loss. They will give you a better body composition (less belly fat) and are known to help prevent cancer. Add to soups, or saute with parsley and dill.
Sugar Coconut Nectar, Maple Syrup, Raw Honey, Medjool dates Sugar is inflammatory. When ingested it goes to our cells for energy (glucose). If our cells are already full of glucose they say "see ya" and send it to the liver to be stored as fat. Try three days without refined sugar and see how good your joints feel and the energy you have.
Coffee Tea Relaxing with a cup of tea can reset our physical and mental state in a positive way. Coffee will put our body in the fight or flight mode very quickly and then cause us to crash. There are specific benefits to each type of tea (black, white, oolong, green) and the additive tisanes i.e. ginger, peppermint, hibiscus. Just Google health benefits of tea and off you go.
Holding Grudges Forgiveness "Getting over a painful experience is much like crossing monkey bars. You have to let go at some point in order to move forward." C.S. Lewis
Acidic Foods Alkaline Foods Acidic foods promote inflammation in the body. Try to achieve a balance between these two. For example, oatmeal, walnuts and blueberries are all acidic. If you ate that for breakfast you should eat a large green salad with veggies for lunch to balance out your body. When the body is too acidic, it looks to alkalize itself, going to your bones to release calcium into the blood. As you can see, too much release of calcium would lead to weak bones. For a complete list of acidic and alkaline foods check out these two articles:
Being a Night Owl Sleep 7+ hours per night Sleep removes waste from our brain clearing toxins that could eventually lead to Alzheimer's disease and other neurological disorders according to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. Pick one or two nights a week to get in bed before 9:30, you will awaken without your alarm clock and feel like taking on the world.
Adapted from: Taste for Life, Jan 2014

To Your Best Health,

Denise Lovat
Certified Health Coach

Visit my website at:
 to schedule a  free 1-hour health history consultation