If there’s a will, habits find the way

One of the most common pitfalls with dieting is what psychologists call the “What the hell effect.” Anyone who has diligently abstained from chocolate cookies for weeks, only to break down and eat the whole box after having a single one knows what this means. The relentless practice of good behaviour can certainly consume a tremendous amount of energy, but […]

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The Secret of Vigor

What is vigor anyway? In his book “The Secret of Vigor” Shawn Talbot describes it as, “a state of biochemical balance – a three-tiered sustained mood state characterized by physical energy, mental acuity, and emotional wellbeing.” Brain chemistry. When the brain is sending signals with acuity and quickness, vigor mounts. Vitality flourishes. That seems easy enough. Can’t we just will […]

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Lighten the load on insulin

lighten the load on insulin

Insulin is a diligent employee of the body who doesn’t get enough credit these days for all of its hard work. Sure it causes weight gain, but insulin is not to blame – it’s just doing its job. Insulin has multiple responsibilities, mostly to do with finding somewhere to stash glucose so it isn’t running rampant through the body. The brain […]

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Insulin, inflammation, and infertility

Insulin is a common culprit these days, it seems. A troublesome instigator of many inflammatory and immune conditions, now it has found its way into infertility. In today’s Globe and Mail article “Mysterious Infertility Cause Baffles Scientists”, Shirley Wang writes about the link between polycystic ovarian syndrome and infertility. PCOS is a disease that is often linked to insulin resistance, blood […]

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Before you bulk up, read this

Both body fat and muscle serve as storage tanks for excess calories – generally unused carbohydrate calories. If you have a good amount of body fat around your mid-section or a thick layer covering your entire frame, now is the time to appreciate that this is a storage vessel of USEABLE energy that you can access. Before you even THINK about […]

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Finding balance

How much of a good thing is too much? At what point does a concern for healthy eating become a burden on the brain? How can an enjoyment of delicious food become such a burden on the body? Is there a place of peace between gluttony and deprivation? When I think about what I do for a living – what […]

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Shall we talk sugar, sugar?

What’s the scoop on Sugar? Added sugar, refined sugar, natural sugar, sugar called by other names, sugar in disguise, sugar that tastes sweet, sugar that doesn’t, sugar that you’d really like to believe is not sugar because you really love eating it every day and want so badly for it not to be sugar. There should be a half year science class […]

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A letter to a dedicated dieter…

To those who are abiding to a diet – Recently, you’ve made a commitment to exercising and losing weight. Perhaps a few clarifications will help eliminate some of the confusion. You can lose the weight successfully if instead of getting caught up in the details you nail down the principles that may be missing. “Self-discipline” and “hard work” may be in […]

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“Healthy” won’t take off the weight.

Eating a “healthy” diet doesn’t take off weight. Operating your body on a deficit is how weight comes off. “Sensible” eating will indeed help KEEP the weight off, but you have to get there first. Chomping down on hoards of healthy food is not the answer. Empty the stockroom. You lose weight by emptying your stock room – your fat […]

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Hormones hijacking your health?

If everything you ate had the exact same pathway through the body, an Oreo cookie would be just as good a snack as a few almonds. The theory “calories in = calories out” has long been retired, but we still cling to it in hopes of being able to eat whatever we wish. After all, the food industry tells us […]

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Rapini with garlic and hot peppers

Rapini - Ladylean's recipes

Ingredients: • 1 bunch rapini, ends removed • ¼ cup water • 1 tablespoon olive oil • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped • 1 tablespoon hot peppers in oil, chopped small • salt and pepper       Directions: 1. Put water and rapini in a large pan, cover, and boil hard for 2 minutes. 2. Uncover and drain liquid. […]

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Simple spaghetti squash

A simple pairing for meatballs or bolognese. Ingredients: • 1 medium spaghetti squash • 1 tablespoon olive oil • salt and pepper Directions: 1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. 2. Cut squash in half, lengthwise and scoop out seeds. 3. Rub olive oil into flesh and season. Place face-down on baking sheet. 4. Roast 30 minutes. 5. Serve 1/2 cup […]

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Roasted fennel with chili flakes

A perfect pairing for fish. Ingredients: • 1 medium fennel, fronds and stem removed • 2 tablespoons olive oil • 2 teaspoons chili flakes • salt and pepper Directions: 1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. 2. Cut fennel into quarters, place on baking sheet. 3. Toss with olive oil, chili flakes, salt and pepper. 4. Roast for 30 minutes. 5. […]

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Crispy brussel sprouts with pecans

Although I have an affinity for bacon with my brussel sprouts, this is an enticing, vegetarian-friendly, baconless way to serve them. Ingredients: • 1 tablespoon olive oil • 1 small onion, chopped • 3 garlic gloves, thinly sliced • 4 cups Brussels sprouts, halved and thinly sliced • ½ cup chicken broth/ vegetable broth • salt and pepper • ¼ […]

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Zucchini pasta ribbons

This is one of my favourite two minute vegetable sides. Ingredients: – 2 large yellow or green zucchini, halved lengthwise and sliced into thin long strips – 1 tablespoon olive oil or pesto – salt and pepper Directions: In a large fry pan over medium heat, toss zucchini with oil or pesto, until wilted, but not mushy. Serve zucchini pasta […]

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The Good Egg

There are many valid reasons why we might want to steer clear of eggs, but they all have to do with the chicken, and not with the egg. Whoever it was that first touted the idea that cholesterol was the real villain of our increasing weight and health woes certainly did a fine job of convincing us that all problems […]

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Smoky Tomato, Fennel Soup

A bit of pancetta, peppery fennel, and a few drops of liquid smoke add a kick to a classic tomato soup. Ingredients:                                                                             […]

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Fennel Soup with Pancetta

This has almost the same ingredients as the Smokey Tomato and Fennel soup – minus the tomato and the smoke. I had never made a fennel soup before. After this one, I’m sold – as were my adventurous guests. The pancetta creates a delightful and distinct flavour. – 1 tbsp. olive oil – 1 large onion, finely chopped – 2 […]

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