Ranch Chicken Quinoa Bake

Ingredients:

  • 4 skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa
  • ranch dip mix (clean premixed packet or see recipe below)
  • 1 can or package cream of chicken soup
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 2 cups broccoli cut into small florets
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar
  • 1/4 cup toasted panko or breadcrumbs
  • Chopped parsley for garnish (optional)

Directions:

  1. Place quinoa, stock, cream of chicken soup and ranch mix in in slow cooker and stir to mix well.
  2. Place chicken breast in and submerge.
  3. Cover and cook for 6-8 hours on low or 4 hours on high.
  4. During last half hour, add broccoli.   Cover and continue to cook until broccoli is tender.
  5. To serve, chicken can be removed, shredded and stirred throughout or breast can be served whole on top of quinoa mixture.
  6. Place in 4 bowls and top each with shredded cheddar and toasted panko.

Ranch Dip Mix:

  • 1 Tbsp dried parsley
  • 1/2 tsp dried dill
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp dried basil
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • pinch of salt

Stir all ingredients together.

The Risks of Being Overweight

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The risks of being overweight……..you know these right?  Unless you truly have been living under a rock, you have been inundated with information about the health implications of being overweight or obese.  But there really is a overabundance of information and at times it can be overload.  It is easy to just tune it out and move along with life and cake.  Who doesn’t want cake?

However, there really are some important facts that everyone should know. Shedding excess weight has profound, immediate positive effects on your health. So, why shed the pounds?  Here are the top risks associated with being overweight:

  1. Heart Disease & Stroke – Hypertension and very high blood levels of cholesterol and triglycerides (blood fats) can lead to heart disease and often are linked to being overweight. Being overweight also contributes to angina (chest pain caused by decreased oxygen to the heart) and sudden death from heart disease or stroke without any signs or symptoms.
  2. Diabetes – 
    Overweight people are twice as likely to develop type 2 diabetes as people who are not overweight. Type 2 diabetes is a major cause of early death, heart disease, kidney disease, stroke, and blindness.
  3. Cancer – 
    Several types of cancer are associated with being overweight. In women, these include cancer of the uterus, gallbladder, cervix, ovary, breast, and colon. Overweight men are at greater risk for developing cancer of the colon, rectum, and prostate. For some types of cancer, such as colon or breast, it is not clear whether the increased risk is due to the extra weight or consumption of a high-fat and high-calorie diet.
  4. Sleep Apnea – 
    Sleep apnea is a serious condition that is closely associated with being overweight. Sleep apnea can cause a person to stop breathing for short periods during sleep and to snore heavily. Sleep apnea may cause daytime sleepiness and even heart failure. The risk for sleep apnea increases with higher body weights. Weight loss usually improves sleep apnea.
  5. Osteoarthritis – 
    Extra weight appears to increase the risk of osteoarthritis by placing extra pressure on weight-bearing joints and wearing away the cartilage (tissue that cushions the joints) that normally protects them. Weight loss can decrease stress on the knees, hips, and lower back and may improve the symptoms of osteoarthritis.
  6. Gallbladder Disease – 
    Gallbladder disease and gallstones are more common if you are overweight. Your risk of disease increases as your weight increases. It is not clear how being overweight may cause gallbladder disease.  Weight loss itself, particularly rapid weight loss or loss of a large amount of weight, can actually increase your chances of developing gallstones. Modest, slow weight loss of about one pound a week is less likely to cause gallstones.
  7. Fatty Liver Disease – 
    Fatty liver disease occurs when fat builds up in the liver cells and damages the liver. It can lead to liver failure. Fatty liver disease is linked to higher than normal blood glucose levels, which are more common in people who are overweight. Weight loss can help with blood glucose control and reduce the build-up of fat in the liver.  Also, people who have fatty liver disease should avoid alcohol.  **Insel, Paul, Don Ross, Kimberley McMahon, Melissa Bernstein. Nutrition: Custom Edition, 4th Edition. Jones & Bartlett Learning, 04/2010. VitalBook file.

    This list should convince you to that weight loss and weight management are important.  That said, beginning to make changes is the tough part.  If you aren’t sure where or how to begin, seeing a Weight Management Specialist, a Nutritionist/Dietitian, or Behavior Change Coach may help.

The most important factor though, is to find your”Why”.  Why do you want to be healthier?

To live a longer life?

To play with your kids?

To see your kids grow and have families of their own?

To walk up the steps without getting winded?

To feel great in your clothes?

To wear a swim suit with confidence on your dream vacation?

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Whatever your “why”………embrace it, put it on Post-Its, write it on your vision board, put it in your journal…….make it part of who you are.  If you embrace your why and keep it in your focus, it makes the beginning and staying on the journey so much easier.

Can Gratitude Really Change Your Life???

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Gratitude, or the concept of living your life with gratitude, is not new.  The idea of maintaining the mindset of being grateful for what you have has been around for, well, forever.  So why is gratitude such a buzzword as of late?  Perhaps it is the fast pace of life and the stress and anxiety that it causes.  Being grateful for your life, health, family can help keep perspective, or at least, help us feel like all the hard work is worth it.

Maybe in this society of material want, we have come to the realization that the “stuff” is not making us happy.  Do we really need to acquire the newest and best of things to feel like we are fulfilled?  Isn’t a healthier choice to be satisfied with what we have and not live in want?

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Being grateful for your life as it is also keeps you grounded and present in your now.  We are not always thinking about what we need to have in the future, what we missed out on in the past, or how much better our lives would be if only……………………

So, sure, you may agree with all of that.  It all sounds good, right?  But, tough?  You bet!  Our culture is a more, more, more, more, type thing.  We are taught, conditioned to want the newest, best, biggest, fastest of everything.  We want to have the right house, the right car, go to the right vacation spot, wear the right clothes, and have the right bottom line on our bank statement.  But, what happens when we don’t have and can’t get those things?  Chances are we feel bad. We feel bad about ourselves.  Why aren’t we good enough, successful enough, smart enough to have these things that we want?

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Here we are feeling shortchanged and it makes us negative and, most likely, pretty grumpy.  So, we wake every morning with a feeling of deprivation and want.  We move through the day trying to figure out what to do differently to put us where we think we should be.  Or trying to determine where we went wrong.  This negativity and feeling of low self-worth multiplies.  We are giving fuel to the thoughts and the thoughts manifest into our reality.  Okay……so maybe a bit much for you to swallow, but the idea is there.

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Here is the million dollar question………………..how do we get to a place of gratitude?  How do we wake every day and go to bed every night feeling grateful for the abundance of our lives?  Focus and a bit of effort.

There are many paths that you can take.  Some people find that beginning to meditate helps. Or, perhaps yoga will help with the task of learning to stay in the moment.  A great first start is to just set your intention at the beginning of every day.  As soon as you rise, recite a positive mantra.  This can be whatever is important to you.  Some easy examples:

  • I choose joyfulness
  • I am deserving of happiness
  • My life is full and abundant
  • Money comes easily to me
  • I will turn challenges into new successes

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Or instead of a mantra, you could list five things that you are grateful for every day.

  • Family
  • Friends
  • Health
  • Clients (business)
  • The beauty of nature

You get the idea.  Beginning each day with positive vibes can really help to dictate the direction of your day.  Starting a journal and just taking a minute to quickly jot these things down can reinforce the thoughts.  download (2)

“Talking about our problems is our greatest addiction. Break the habits. Talk about your joys.” – Unknown

Beginning to be grateful for where we are and what we have, the abundance of our lives, brings us more abundance.  If you have read The Secret by Rhonda Byrne you most likely know the idea here.  Our focus attracts more of the same.  If we are continuously focused on the negative, we are simply attracting more negativity into our lives.

 

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This is something that I say to myself every day, especially when I can feel a bit of stress or anxiety creeping in.  It helps to put things into perspective.

Final thoughts…………….as with any other form of discipline; healthy eating, exercise, this takes a bit of practice and some time to develop the habit.  But, give it a try.  We owe it to ourselves to be happy and live with joy.  Your life is abundant and full……………you just need to remember it and be grateful!

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DO YOU NEED A LIFE COACH?

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Life coach, personal coach, behavior change coach, health educator, wellness professional……..perhaps you have heard some of these terms.  Have you wondered “Just what exactly is this and why would I need it?”.    Although there are slight differences between the titles, for simplicity, they are basically:

A professional who works with clients to help them adopt and maintain healthy behaviors so as to improve and extend the quality of life.  This is accomplished, hopefully, through behavior changing psychological skills, exercise programming, and nutrition planning.

In a nutshell, our hope as Wellness Professionals is to help clients identify and pursue goals that are related to their health.  These goals can be around weight loss, athletic performance, improving nutrition, or just being healthier to live a longer life and prevent disease.

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So, why is this something that you may need?  Well……………change is hard. Really tough for most of us.  We are creatures of habit.  We take the path of least resistance.

I am guessing that, unless you are already on board with fitness and nutrition and just reading this for kicks, if you are reading this you need to make a change of some sort.  Chances are you know what you need to do.  You know that you need to exercise and you know that you need to make changes to your diet.  In addition, I am sure that you know how to find tools to do these things.  You can’t NOT find a home workout on Pinterest.  There are a million Facebook pages that supply daily nutrition tips, recipes, food plans.  You can Google anything…….even a printed workout from an online trainer to take to the gym with you.

So, back to the question at hand, why would you need a Wellness Coach?  Simple.  Even with all of the tools at our disposal, we are all going to hit a few stumbling blocks.  The biggest one being MOTIVATION!!!!  It is hard to get over the initial inertia.  It is even harder to stick with it. A second big  reason is accountability.  If you know that someone is going to follow up and ask for your food-log or workout journal, you are much more likely to tow the line.  A few other key reasons to enlist help are;

  • Help with uncovering your “WHY”
  • Motivation
  • Accountability
  • Setting SMART goals with appropriate time frames
  • Motivation
  • Accountability
  • Having someone holding you accountable
  • A friendly voice motivating you to step away from the cookies
  • Accountability
  • Assistance with weeding through the fitness/nutrition information overload
  • Motivation
  • Accountability
  • Putting it all together; streamlining your plan with one professional, rather than seeing someone for diet and another for exercise.
  • And finally, in case you missed it MOTIVATION and ACCOUNTABILITY

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In case you hadn’t guessed, I find that motivation and accountability are the two biggies that most of us struggle with.  Enlisting the help of a Wellness Coach can greatly help in these areas.  How?   I am glad that you asked.

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First, a common mistake that many people (most of us) make is not being quite sure of our “why”.  What does this mean?  Uncovering your exact motivation for making a change.  “Because my wife told me to lose weight.”…….not a great why.  Sometimes it takes a bit of digging.  Maybe it is to live to see your grandchildren.  Perhaps it is to get off of medication.  Hopefully, you get the idea.  Your why needs to be something important to you.  You need to be able to visualize how a change will improve this aspect of your life………see yourself there.  This is not easy for some of us.  We will help establish your why and we will revisit it whenever you need some motivation.

The second challenge that a Wellness Coach will help with is setting goals.  Sure, we all have a goal. You have one right now I am sure.  The problem comes from what kind of goal you have.  Many people set a big picture goal……say lose 50 pounds.  That is a big, daunting goal.  Others set too many goals, too restrictive of a goal, or too vague of a goal.  A Wellness Coach will help with SMART goals.

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Having smart goals in place is like a road map of where you are going.  You wouldn’t leave on a trip with our planning your route, would you?   Okay, so I am dating myself…….pretend your GPS stopped working out in the country……..what’s the plan.  Suppose your weight loss plateaus?  What’s the plan.

Once your why is established and goals are set, a Wellness Professional will help you establish an action plan.   This can take many different avenues. Perhaps it is personal training and a written food plan.  Maybe it is just an initial nutritional consultation followed up by a few diet follow ups in addition to a work-out plan.  It could be written workouts to take to your gym and follow.  The plan and accountability will look different for each individual depending on needs, goals, and the amount of motivation (extra push) needed.

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A Wellness Coach can truly tailor a program specific to you and your needs and goals.  Interested in learning how we can help you.  We would love to chat with you about the services we offer and meet with you for a free consultation……..don’t live near us.  No problem!  We offer online Coaching services as well.  What have you got to lose?  A few pounds!  Now is the time to get on the road to a long, healthy life!

Check us out at: http://www.core-essentials-fitness.com

 

Isagenix Lifestyle

MAKING ISAGENIX PART OF MY CLEAN EATING LIFESTYLE. SELLING OUT? NO WAY!!

By Core Essentials Fitness on Monday, August 3, 2015

 

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As someone who is a clean eater…..I avoid processed, fake foods.  I stick with real, whole foods.  I eat organic as much as I can and believe that food is medicine.  I have also tried to help bring my clients over to this way of eating……sometimes with more success than others.  I know, change is hard.  I just really firmly believe that we are in charge of our own health.   We only get one body.  We need to take care of it, nourish it and be aware of what we are putting into it.  There has been so much research and so much evidence about the harm that food additives, preservatives, and artificial colors and flavors are causing us……not to mention contributing to the obesity epidemic. But, that is soap box is for another blog.

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Today, I just wanted to share how this clean eater……and my entire clean eatin’ family, have found a company that we can get on board with……Isagenix.

This relationship began out of my desire to have a product to recommend to clients.  I never really thought that I, personally needed any help with healthy eating other than some supplemental protein.  However, clients frequently ask about what types of proteins they should use post-workout or to supplement if they do not get enough protein through their diet.  I have also had questions about good meal/protein bars, vitamins, and brands of omegas……etc.  I thought, “Wouldn’t it be great to not only be able to recommend something that I felt passionately about, but to also be able to just hook them up with the products myself?”

Also, though I desperately try to get all of my clients eating clean, eating enough, and eating frequently; sometimes it just doesn’t happen.  Clients skip breakfast when hurried, work through lunch, don’t bring snacks with them……you know the drill.  Then what happens?  They end up starving and making a bad decision.   Or even if they don’t make the bad choice and hit a drive through, the effect of eating too little or too infrequently is a pokey metabolism.  So, while I never thought that I would need meal replacement shakes and bars, I though, WOW!  This just might fill a need for my clients.

So, we (hubby/business partner and I) began to search.  What line of products would fill our need?  The search was an arduous one.  Finding a line of healthy, real nutrition without a bunch of junk in it proved challenging.  Then we found Isagenix.

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Isagenix has changed our lives.  We thought we were healthy, but now feel amazing.  The meal replacement shakes fill our need for post-workout protein, the bars are great for on the go, but the real game changer has been the Cleanse For Life and Ionix Supreme Products.  Not to mention the vitamin packs and the Omegas.

Isagenix provides so many things.  There truly is something for everyone.

  • The weight loss solutions help people safely and effectively lose pounds and inches, build lean muscle, cleanse away toxins, manage stress and improve energy.

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  • The energy and performance solutions help you get lean, build muscle, and experience greater performance with faster recovery times.

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  • I am most excited about the healthy aging solutions!  There is a fantastic line of products that help you fight the effects of aging by combining the latest advances in nutritional cleansing , meal replacements, and age natural aging defense.

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We have been using the products….proteins, snacks, e+ natural energy shots, electrolyte drinks……..What we are the most excited about are the support products.

  •  The Ageless Essentials vitamin packs are not only convenient, but we feel great.  I am even giving Isagenix vitamins to me kids!
  •  Product B: Isa Genesis is amazing!  Now I am not going to get all technical here, but this is a product that targets the source of aging, such as oxidative stress and assists in youthful cell function………I don’t know, but we feel better since we began taking it.
  • Ionix Supreme (my personal favorite) buffers the body from environmental toxins and stress.  It also supports clarity, focus and reduces fatigue.  It is like all natural Zoloft!

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For the average person who is embarking on the journey to get healthier and fitter, nutrition is key.  What happens in the kitchen can be even more important than what happens in the gym!  Isagenix is real nutrition made easy.  You know that you are feeding your body great stuff, but it is also so easy.  Plus the proof speaks for itself.

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Is Isagenix expensive?  No way.  Think about what you may be spending on food or “stuff” now.

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You can’t afford NOT to try it.  Plus with the meal replacement products, you will be saving money on groceries!

The final really amazing aspect of Isagenix is the financial opportunities.  You get paid simply for sharing the gift of great health and nutrition.  We love the products so we are thrilled about telling everyone about the great stuff!  Just by sharing, we earn a commission which pays for our products.  We are essentially using Isagenix for FREE and feeling amazing!

Isagenix can make being a business owner more accessible, more attainable and more fun than ever before.  It’s not just a way to make money – it’s a path to financial independence.  Not your thing?  That’s okay.  Isagenix can be what you want it to be.  Just want to get your products paid for?  Great!  Want your products paid for AND some extra spending money?  Great!  Earn enough for a dream vacation?  Even better!  Or become an Isagenix Millionaire?  Sign me up!

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What are you waiting for?  Change your health, change your wealth TODAY!

 

http://www.coreessentialsfitness.isagenix.com/

http://www.core-essentials-fitness.com