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Painful Heartburn - What can I do

Last week was a tough week at work.  When the pressure is on and time is short I stop thinking about what I am putting into my mouth and just keep going.  The things I tend to grab are items that take no prep. Through their good taste provide comfort, and in the end make me wish I had thought things through a little more.  On one afternoon, I headed out of my office for a quick break.  One of my employees, who loves to cook with hot peppers (he grows his own), was there with chips and a fiery salsa he had cooked up at home.  Not being in the best state of mind I started right in.  I must say it was awesome, and I love the way the heat slowly built up over time.  I loved it until, that night as I was trying to drift off to sleep a familiar fire started to burn in my chest. Drinking water, burping, and changing position had no impact.  I would drift off to sleep, only to wake back up on fire.  It continued into the next day.  I have never experienced heartburn like that before.  As usual I started looking for help on the internet.  WebMD, Wikipedia, all had their various ideas.  I eventually came across a web sight called "Tipnut." You should check out the link.  What I was interested in where the ideas for home remedy. The remedy that worked for me was Peppermint Tea.  It was all we had in the house at the time, but it worked, and that is all that mattered

Things I learned through this:
  • I would rather eat smart than go through the pain
  • There are preventative steps you can take - most important is knowing yourself.
  • Better to start trying to reduce the effects of heartburn as soon as you notice it, than to let it continue to build unchecked.
  • Sometimes it can take 12 hours to clear (that is for me this time around)
  • Comfort from stress can sometimes lead to discomfort in other areas.
Be smart.  Heartburn is no fun when it hits full blown.

Type 2 Diabetes - Are Your Blood Sugar Levels Normal?

I was reading an article on Type 2 Diabetes today. As an Administrator for a Skilled Nursing Facility, I am amazed at how many of those who come in for care are suffering from this disease. The impact of uncontrolled Diabetes on a person is something that each person should take seriously. Don't let it catch you by supprise. If you already have Type 2 Diabetes, their are something you need to be doing to insure continued health and well being. The following article, Type 2 Diabetes - Are Your Blood Sugar Levels Normal? states that if you are a diabetic, monitoring your blood sugar levels regularly is essential in keeping your health problem in tight control. Please read the article if you think you might, or if you know that you do, have Diabetes. This is not a battle you want to lose.

My Biggest Dieting Obstacle

We all have obstacles that keep us from pursuing or achieving our goals. We point the finger at other people, circumstances, gender, family of origin, you name it we have probably heard it used as an obstacle for achieving. Examples in my life include, "If I had more money I could drive the car I wanted" "If I had started sooner I could have owned my own business." I call it the IF ONLY SYNDROME. When I realize I am stuck in that syndrome, I realize that the real obstacle isn't the money, or the time, or the...., the real obstacle is me. I will admit there are legitimate obstacles that might keep us from getting to where we want to go, but in my experience, most of my perceived obsticles really have to do with excuses that I make up to justify my giving up.

This is so true of Dieting and Me. I have had some great runs at weight loss with the South Beach Diet. I have dropped many pounds with nothing more than exercise. I have often been heard to blame the fact that I am as heavy today as I have ever been, on how South Beach is unrealistic for the long haul, or that no one could really exercise 45 minutes a day 5 times a week. Today I am blaming all the Christmas Parties and Cookies that others put in front of me and make me eat. The reality is that I choose not to stay on the South Beach Diet Plan because I value something else more than being at 175 lbs. I would rather enjoy eating vast amounts of tasty food than insure my health. I would rather relax, or watch tv, than go to the gym. The reality is I am making choices every day to not reach my goal. I sabotage myself. If I am ever to achieve my goal of weight loss, I have got to come to grips with the fact that it is not others, or circumstances, or unfortunate events that keep me from my goal, it is more than likely me. Once again my biggest obstacle is me. I am my biggest battle. Here is to getting it right. May your battle be easy.

Oregon Ducks - Reducing Stress

Over the last few months I have been wrestling with ways to reduce stress.  While work with its deadlines and performance expectations can make life tough, I have found that often my stress is the result of not practicing self care.  I would describe self care as the act of doing what is needed to take care of yourself emotionally, spiritually, and physically.  It means that you must often times prioritize yourself and your personal needs over others.  As I grew up this way of thinking was though of as selfish.  However, when I prioritize the needs of others at the expense of my own needs I end up feeling frustrated, resentful, angry, used, mistreated, all feelings that cause my stress level to go up.  The secret is in taking care of yourself first, so that you can give the best of yourself to others.  It is really a simple concept, but it has been villainized as wrong, sinful, self-serving, and unloving.  Again, these labels cause me to feel stressed.  This last weekend I decided to put my needs first, and found myself heading to the Oregon Duck, Oregon State Beavers, Civil War Game.  I can't begin to tell you how much fun I had, so instead I will show you.  I shot some video of the time down there.  In the end I came home a better person and able to enjoy and give to those around me.  Hopefully you can see what I mean.

How the Oregon Ducks Versus Oregon State Beavers is Helping me Grow Up

For the last few years I have been working on me.  By that I mean that I have spent years thinking that putting others first, being sacrificial, dying to self, was what the good guy always does. I have worked hard to make sure my wife and kids have had their needs met.  I have a hard time buying what I need.  After a few years of meeting with a councilor, I have started to figure out that taking care of myself is not selfish, it is actually self care. 

So how do the Oregon Ducks fit into it?  They are a part of my self care program.  Doing what I enjoy has taken me to the Ducks vs Stanford, the Ducks vs UCLA, and tomorrow it will take me to the Ducks vs Beavers.  Normally I would feel guilty about leaving my wife and kids at home, but I am growing.  I would feel the need to take them, but I am going with friends.  What makes my becoming a little more health more fun, is that the Ducks are playing awesome football.  What other team scores three touchdowns in 5 minutes.  Who else has a shot at the national championship.  My personal development could not have come at a better time.

Tomorrow I will be on my way to Corvallis at 7 am.  Kick off is a 12:30.  I will be dressed in Green, cheering loudly, and quacking when excited.  Its a big day. Games don't get a whole lot bigger than the Civil War Game. What makes it even sweeter is that I didn't have a ticket this time yesterday.  As I have worked on my self it has led to my making friends (another part I am working on).  And now, one of those friends has invited me to the game. The Ducks are helping me to grow up, and the Beaver game just helps me see it.  This is the part of the battle I like.  May your team win tomorrow.

Waiting to Lose Weight

Ok, I know that sounds like a huge cop out.  But, waiting to lose weight actually makes sense at this time in my life.  I have been busy researching things like Medifast, Weight Watchers, NutraSystem, and a number of others you can find on the internet.  In fact, I might just post a whole bunch of them right here on my page. Next to "How to Make Money on the Internet," "Losing Weight" is the most popular topic. With so many people claiming that they can all help you drop 10 pounds in a week, or 50 pounds in 12 weeks, how do you know which to chose? 

Last week I was listening to the Oregon Public Broadcasting Channel.  On one of their programs they were discussing the weight gain that occurs over the Holiday Season.  The person being interviewed stated that it wasn't the quick weight we gain during thanksgiving that we should worry about.  He said that can be lost quickly by returning to a normal eating pattern.  He said we should all be concerned about the two or three pounds we gain every year, and never lose.  That would me that for someone who has been gaining slow weight for the last 25 years (someone like me), they could easily have put on between 50 and 75 pounds.  I did the math and was angry that he was right.  He said weight gained like that is very hard to lose and keep off.  The quick weight lose choices may drop you quickly, but they don't help you make the lasting changes needed to keep it off.  Over the years I have done a number of diets, I usually lose between 20 and 25 pounds in a 8 week period of time.  The problem is, I can gain it all back over the next three months, and usually add a few more pounds on top.  With that being the case, I need a plan that I can sustain, that will stay with me for life.  That means it can't be powders and formulas.  It can't be food I will not want to eat the rest of my life.  It has to somehow fit with my lifestyle, or help me change my lifestyle.

At work I have a coworker who is nearing the 50 lbs lost mark.  She has accomplished this in 12 weeks.  What has helped her is that she attends a group once a week that talks about nutrition and strategies for losing weight. The group competes against each other to lose the most weight with some significant prizes. She takes what she learns about sugar, and pop, and metabolism, and so many other things, and puts it into practice.  She is exercising and doing what she needs to do.  She said today, that she is learning how to eat, rather than just eating a packaged food.  It makes sense to her.  The next group starts in January.  It sounds like what I need.  Again, my approach to this next round of diet has to do with it being sustainable, doable, allowing me to still enjoy the taste of food and to be able to cook.  And, it also must allow me to lose weight and keep it off.  50 pounds would be nice, 60 would be awesome.  I think I will be signing up in January.  In the mean time I am waiting to lose weight.