Monthly Archives: December 2012

Happy New Year”



Happy New Year! So many people this time of year make New Years resolutions, some may stick to the promises they make. Others it gets put in the too hard basket. This is a real shame, the things that make us unhealthy, the things that people proclaim they’ll give up are the perfect prevention to a myriad of health problems.

Many moons ago when I was a nurse I looked after people who sadly through obesity and sedentary lives ended up with type II diabetes and peripheral vascular and neurovascular disease (they go hand in hand in later stages of the disease). As a young student nurse it was my job to prepare this one male patient for his up coming amputation of his lower left leg. Having listened in my lectures about patients might (and rightly so) be upset, angry about the loss of a limb, nothing prepared me for this man saying he could not wait for the blasted thing to be cut off. He was in agony and was happy to see it go.

Later in my nursing career I did a stint in palliative care. I looked after the most gorgeous man. He had been smoking since he was 13 years old. Now in end stage emphysema in his late 70’s he was paying a horrible price. I looked after George almost every shift for the last 3 months of life…… It was horrible to watch. I can not even imagine how his wife, children and grandchildren felt, let alone how George felt. George told me closer to the end that he felt like he was drowning in cement. He asked me never to take up smoking. It was his biggest regret.

This may sound morose but those two experiences have shaped how I feel about my health. When I am old, grey and wrinkly I want to be the kind of grandma who is travelling the world with my husband. Visiting my children and grandchildren, spoiling them only as Grandmas can.

I guess what I am saying is that, sticking to your 2013 NYE promise, may be tough for a while, you may break every now and then….. But stick to it. Baby steps for those habits that you are trying to change. It will be worth it in the future.

I sincerely hope that 2013 is a fantastic year for you all and that it brings love, happiness and fulfilment in your days.


Childhood Obesity


We are off to Adelaide to spend Christmas with my family and my Nanna who is 98 and still going strong. My Nan has battled bowl cancer, knee surgery, various other ailments in the past few years. We often talk about how strong her constitution is and that we won’t be surprised if she makes it too 100. The other day my son was telling his best mate that his great Nanna is as “Strong as an ox, she lifts weights you know, she can lift 50kgs!” I had to giggle. Imagining my Nan hitting the gym pushing out the weights.


82yo – 70kg dead lift  (not a relative of mine)

I should clarify that the weight lifting Grandma my son was talking about  is my mum, Nanna’s daughter. I like the idea that my son is impressed by healthy strong bodies. That being fit and healthy is normal, something to be admired…. even in a 98 yo woman!

There are so many obese children in Australia – approximately 25% of kids are overweight and 10-15% are obese. This is alarming to say the least. Children learn from their parents. If your kids do not see you eat right and exercise… how will they learn?

I feel for these kids. The health issues they have from a very young age are crazy. Young kids are presenting with type II diabetes, heart disease, fatty livers just to mention a few. These are not typically not seen until much later in life. These children’s life expectancy has plummeted. Not only are their lives shortened, the cost on our health care will skyrocket. The system will not cope.


From time to time there are reports on TV about several fast food chains and how they are making our kids fat…… this is short sited and a cop out. We are the parents, the adults… WE CAN SAY NO! Yes granted there will be tears from our kids, there may even be  “I hate you” or  “It’s not fair”. This is short lived. You only have to say NO possibly three for four times and they wont ask again. My kids when taken to fast food chains for birthday parties often come home and say they feel sick. I don’ begrudge them eating it, they need to learn how it makes them feel, I just won’t take them there!

Junk food is so high in sugar that the body burns it quickly, then these young growing bodies are craving food and the sugar hit not longer after they have eaten. These kids bodies are developing on all the wrong foods with very little nutritious benefit. It is no wonder they have so many health issues.

I am hoping that when they are adolescents , that they will naturally stay away from bad food choices. I am realistic, I know they will go there with their friends on occasions, I do think however it won’t become a daily habit. I hope that I am teaching my children occasional foods are OK in moderation. I hope that, they know healthy foods are delicious and fulfilling.

We need to teach them by example. What I am trying to say is that you look after yourself, you eat right and exercise. The health benefits not only are for you, they are also for your kids. Its a ripple effect. 🙂




CourageSometimes the thought of change is too frightening. Sometimes it is enough to halt you mid step. Change can be scary, on the other hand change will alter your life. If they way you are living your life now is not working for you, then you need to make a change.

Going about your life as you have done, will not make any difference. The only one who can get you there is  you. The only one you have to compete with in life is you. Your loved ones care and cherish you, but they can only support you. Cheer you on the side lines and maybe pick you up if you fall. You are the only one who can start the change, and can keep that change going.

Don’t fill your head with self-doubt, you are stronger and better than you think you are. You deserve a healthier happier you. Don’t let fear take hold and stop you from what you want to be.

Now tis the silly season…… how do you stay on track?


For us here in the southern hemisphere Christmas is summer time. It makes me think of going to the beach, BBQ’s and socialising in the glorious sunshine with friends. Problem is, we do tend to over indulge. Not only in our foods but alcohol as well. I get it (believe me I do). It’s been a tough year, its gone by way too fast and each year seems to slip by faster than the last! Goals may not have been achieved fully and it may get you down.


So, over this silly season….. how do you have fun, relax and keep your goals? It is tough, it’s hard to be that person not drinking at the party. Abstaining from all the amazing food that has been placed on the table. Feeling anger and resentment towards all those around you who are enjoying themselves!  What’s the solution?

Make your food choices wisely. Do give yourself the OK to have some of the “bad foods” but set a limit for yourself and stick to it. Choose the carrot sticks/celery sticks over the bread sticks or crackers. Stay away from the potato salad, bread rolls. Choose the garden salad instead. Have the turkey instead of the ham and if your lucky some salmon and maybe one or two prawns 😉

We all tend to get to the end of the day and have eaten WAY too much. It’s almost like we think we are never going to see food again. We pile the food up, go back for seconds or even thirds! The thing is, you’ve been so good. You have limited your portions and you’ve seen the results. Why eat so much that you feel that you might throw up? There will be SO many left overs that you’ll be making turkey salad till you can not stomach turkey again till Christmas next year!


Now alcohol…. If you do drink don’t deny yourself, you’ll only resent others around you. Again set yourself a quota, You might have a glass when everyone has arrived and then one at lunch. Drink water in between each glass, handy tip, drink water out of the wine glass. Add flavour to the water, squeeze a fresh lemon or lime throw in a bit of fresh mint into the jug. Keep it on the table, not only will you find you’ll drink more water, so will your family/friends. Making it accessible and appealing will make people want to drink it.


If you are travelling to family or friends… opt to drive. The thought of loosing your licence may be the incentive to help you drink less. Stay away from the sugary fizzy drinks. Research suggest that one can of fizzy drink (250 calories) takes 40-50 mins to burn off in a run. Why add that to your calorie intake? Lemon or lime juice in cold water is delicious and calorie free!

At the end of the day, you might just be the only one who’s not feeling ill from over indulging. You’ve caught up with family and friends, feeling happy and relaxed. Ready for another day. Planning your walk in the morning, getting ready for a new year! xxImage