Health & Wellness For The Whole Family

Health & Wellness For The Whole Family

There are over 1 billion overweight people in the world, and the number continues to grow. In 1992, American’s spent an estimated $30 billion on weight loss programs and products. We have since doubled that number! Yup over $60 billion a year is spent on programs, foods, drinks, and supplements that are destroying our health and sending the wrong message to our kids.

So many people still think skinny = healthy. Yes, when people are overweight that is a outward sign that they’re not healthy on the inside. BUT skinny people can be unhealthy also! I know skinny people that have high cholesterol, migraines, fatigue and even cancer.

Let’s set our sights higher! Make your goal to be healthy….to feel the best you’ve ever felt, to have a normal blood pressure, to never have a headache again (my personal health goal), to run around with your kids without getting out of breath….for the rest of your life!

Having the goal to lose weight is a good goal, don’t get me wrong. However, if that’s your only goal you’re selling yourself short. Just wanting to lose weight is what is keeping the weight on. It’s what keeps you going with the yo-yo diets. And it’s actually making your health worse!

Here’s why:

Making weight loss your primary goal may lead you to quick fix after quick fix, like diet pills, fad diets, or restricting food. All those tactics do is make you malnourished, have low self esteem, lose muscle and bone, destroy your hormones and gut. It could even lead to food obsession and eating disorders like anorexia or bulimia.

In the least you’re setting yourself up for failure because what you’re most likely NOT doing is creating healthy sustainable lifestyle changes.

Sure when you restrict calories or use diet pills you’ll lose weight, but at what other costs? As mentioned above, you can become malnourished because you aren’t consuming enough necessary vitamins and minerals which can also create an electrolyte imbalance. These can also lead to the slowing down of your metabolism and muscle or bone loss.

An electrolyte imbalance can be a huge problem for your health. Electrolytes consist of calcium, sodium, potassium, magnesium and others. Electrolytes control all of our body functions. Some of the most important functions being our heart beat, our immune system, strong bones, and digestion. Read more about electrolytes here.

According to this article, calorie restriction also leads to a slower metabolism, decreased immune function, and reproductive issues.

Count chemicals, not calories:

Calories in vs calories out does not equal healthy living. For example, are you eating a 100 calorie snack that’s full of chemicals and artificial junk or are you eating a 100 calorie nutrient dense apple? There’s a HUGE difference there. One of those foods contributes to disease (even obesity) because it’s full of man-made chemicals and the other contributes to being disease free and naturally at the right weight for you.

The quality of calories is way more important than the quantity. We now know that there is “convincing evidence of chemical “obesogens”—dietary, pharmaceutical, and industrial compounds that may alter metabolic processes and predispose some people to gain weight”. (source) Dietary obesogens are found in ultra processed, packaged, man-made items. They can also be found in pesticides and herbicides. The solution is to eat organic whole foods!

Weight loss quick fixes aren’t sustainable:

“65% of people who successfully complete a fad diet will end up gaining all of their weight back that they lost. The average American adult tries to implement a fad diet 4 times per year. Within two weeks, 25% of Americans will give up on their weight loss goals.” (source)

Simply put, gaining extra weight didn’t happen overnight. Losing the weight won’t happen overnight either. Being healthy and at your optimal weight, is a lifelong journey.

Weight loss in kids:

Today, about one in three American kids and teens is overweight or obese (source).  Obese kids (and adults) are at a higher risk for diseases such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes and cancer. They also tend to have poor self-esteem.

Kids watch EVERYTHING adults do. We are their role model. They look up to us and depend on us to make the best decisions for them. If parents aren’t eating vegetables, kids won’t. If parents go from one diet to the next, kids learn to do the same.

Girls as young as 8 years old have been on a diet because they’ve watched a female role model diet or know a friend who has been on a diet. That hurts my heart! Can we show ourselves and our kids that all we need to do is eat right and be active?

Be the healthiest you:

Being truly healthy is a lifestyle…not a number on the scale or a size of clothing. My goal is to be as healthy as I can be, to feel the best I’ve ever felt and to be disease free until the day I die! I want the same for my daughter, and for you and your family.

According to this article, “three-fourths of of the population has an eating pattern that is low in vegetables, fruits, dairy, and oils. Most of the population has an eating pattern that is low in vegetables, fruits, dairy, and oils…Most Americans exceed the recommendations for added sugars, saturated fats, and sodium.”

To make improvements that are sustainable, make 1-2 changes at a time. Once you’re comfortable with those improvements, make 1-2 more and so on. Healthy improvements can include things like increasing your intake of organic vegetables. Learn to read a nutrition label (hint: calories aren’t the most important part). Add healthy fats into your diet. Drink more water and exercise.

How to fit ‘healthy’ into your busy life:

Meal plan and prep!! I use RealPlans to plan my meals. They have over 1500 healthy recipes that you can customize to your family’s likes and needs. It’s super affordable and they have a free app so that you’re able to easily take the recipes and grocery list with you. I demonstrate how easy it is to use RealPlans here.

Make it a family event! I sometimes get the Super Woman complex where I think I can and should do it all. I remind myself that I’m just me and there’s NO WAY I can do it all! Then I ask for help. Have your kids cutting veggies or putting nuts in a small baggie for some quick and easy snacks. Have your significant other do the shopping or cook a meal. You also can’t be healthy by yourself. Sit down with your family and set some goals to be healthy together.

Cook once, eat twice! Cook one time, but double (even triple) the recipe and you’ll be able to heat leftovers for several meals. A great way to do this is cook in your crockpot!

Should you need help on your journey to becoming the healthiest you possible, I would love to help! Check out the different programs I offer here.

Peace and wellness –

Health & Wellness For The Whole Family

Bri is a RN and Certified Integrative Nutrition Health Coach who helps moms have the healthiest family she can have! She supports, encourages and motivates moms while providing evidence based practices that will guide her to her (and her family’s) optimal wellness goals.

She is passionate about reducing the rate of disease for our future generations. That can be accomplished through whole family wellness!
Visit her website to learn more!

3 Creative Ways to Get Your Kid to Eat their Greens

3 Creative Ways to Get Your Kid to Eat their Greens

Most kids aren’t big fans of green vegetables once they’ve passed the pureed baby food stages of life. In order to prove to myself that I’m a mom who makes an effort, I’ve found some sneaky ways to work them into our diet.

Here are my 3 Tips and Easy Recipes:

3 creative ways to get your kid to eat their greens

1. Make a green drink

I admit, the idea of salad in a blender didn’t appeal to me at first, my kid isn’t the only one who is resistant to vegetables. Maybe it’s all my fault for eating too many donuts when I was pregnant with him. Finally, I broke down and tried it after hearing from other moms the wonder of getting kids to eat greens in a smoothie.

You can use kale (if you’re brave and like bitter things) or spinach (which I prefer because of the milder flavor). Experiment with the amount of spinach, I have found that too much can ruin it, a little goes a long way. Also, banana or super sweet fruit is the key to masking the flavor of the greens.

These two recipes make one adult serving or two small servings for kids.

Smoothie Recipe #1: Green Chocolate Milkshake

Half a frozen banana

A handful of spinach

1 T of peanut butter (or other nut butter)

1 T of cocoa powder

1 t of maple syrup

½ cup of milk (more or less depending on desired thickness)

Smoothie Recipe #2: Sweet Green Monster

½ of a frozen banana

A handful of spinach

¼ cup of pineapple

¼ cup of frozen strawberries

1 T of orange juice concentrate

½ cup of water

2. Green Mashed Potatoes

Boil four large potatoes or half potatoes and half cauliflower

Saute half a bag of spinach, add a little garlic and onion to it if you’re feeling fancy.

Puree this mixture in the food processor.

Instead of spinach, you can also boil half broccoli and half potatoes if you prefer.

Add spinach to the potatoes

Add 2-4 T of butter and ¼-1/3 cup of milk

Mash all together. Use a Kitchen-Aid, hand mixer or hand held masher.

3. Red Light, Green Light Pasta

Add sautéed, pureed spinach to a jar of your favorite pasta sauce.

Stir it into some whole grain, high protein or gluten-free penne pasta

Once it’s done, if you put a blind-fold on your kiddo, he won’t even know there is anything different about the sauce. If not and he sees the green you can tell him it’s spinach or just say “spices”.

There you have it, folks! These have all been kid-tested and approved in my house. That said, every kid is different, so results may vary. You can always use these ideas to get a jump start and experiment with your own recipe making. When it comes to smoothies in particular, there are so many things to try.

A good way to get children excited to eat this stuff is to have them help make it. My son puts the spinach in the blender and pours in the water. Then some magic voodoo happens that makes him want to try what he’s made. He’s even started saying, “can we have lettuce in our smoothie?”

Bon Appetit!

If you have good tips for getting kids to eat more greens, feel free to share in the comments section. I’m always looking for new things to try.

Post written by Melissa Uhles

Melissa is a freelance writer-for-hire and the author of three novels and a children’s picture book. She’s co-founder and writer for Pen and Parent. In addition, she’s been published online at The Pennyhoarder, Rage Against the Minivan, and Red Tricycle. To find out more, you can visit her blog here

Can Your Job Be Part Of Your Self-Care Routine?

Can Your Job Be Part Of Your Self-Care Routine?

The topic of self-care seems to be everywhere. It’s important to take some time for yourself, but it also depends on how you are currently treating yourself. I started to feel guilty after reading articles about how you “should be” getting pedicures and going to yoga on the weekends. It felt like one more thing was added to my to-do list. How am I going to sneak in some self-care?

It was then I realized the articles I was reading was missing something, the mention of work. Work at first has nothing to do with self-care. But I like to work, and I choose to work for a myriad of reasons.

I love my daughter and I love family time. I love sneaking out of work early to be home for bedtime. I love spending my days off, focused on her. I love how she has reached the age where she wants to hold my hand and sit in my lap. I constantly engage in conversations with other working moms to discuss the coveted “work-life balance”, because it’s hard. Work and family are just plain hard.

But I also look forward to Monday’s and going back to the work-week. I love sipping my coffee on my morning commute while I read over work emails. I love wearing my work clothes, treating myself to lunches and even going to the bathroom when I so please! I love feeling important and needed (in a different way than motherhood). I like having adult conversations and having purpose outside my family. It reminds me of who I was before becoming a mother, and that person hasn’t changed much.

Don’t get me wrong, if I won the mega lotto- I would quit my job on the spot! But once I started thinking that my everyday 9-5 job was contributing to my self-care, I felt better and more at ease with the mom guilt that is associated with “leaving your children with complete strangers to raise them”.

I’m adding my job to my self-care routine, and it wouldn’t kill me to add some yoga too.

It's important to take some time for yourself, but it also depends on how you are currently treating yourself. Can your job be part of your self-care routine? Click through to find out more!

Post written by Megan Senese

Megan loves helping women succeed and is passionate about spreading the word, resources and tools to ensure women have an equal chance.  With over 10 years of experience in professional marketing and business development, she launched a resume writing business after years of writing other people’s resumes and seeing them succeed with the new version. To date, all of her clients have been women and moms and we still need every advantage to not only land the job, but the right one for your family. If you are looking to make a career change, re-enter the workforce or just find a new job-  check her out at

7 Things You Can Borrow From Early Elementary Teachers To Keep Your Little Ones Organized

7 Things You Can Borrow From Early Elementary Teachers To Keep Your Little Ones Organized

Have you ever walked into a Kindergarten classroom and marveled at how, even with 25 little ones who are new to this school thing can be so focused, organized and tidy with only one teacher (maybe two) while at home your two trash the place in 30 seconds flat the minute your back is turned?

Early elementary teachers have a host of tricks up their sleeves!

Table Trash Bins 

When littles are doing crafts that require cutting out, have a container in the middle of the table for them to put their trash in. It doesn’t need to be big, a 3-4 cup ‘Tupperware” is fine.  But they likely have one in the classroom and they are used to keeping things tidy there – use this to keep them tidy at home

The Colored Clip-Person On The Board

Ever look in a kindergarten classroom and see various colors of clip-people on the board holding different things, or just hanging out waiting. They all have a purpose.  The kids all know what the purpose is.  For example, the red one may hold work that the class did yesterday so if you were out, look at the clip for what you need to do.  The white one may hold the envelopes of lunch money so if you have lunch money go clip it with everyone else’s….etc.  Get a clip-person and put it on the fridge.  Tell the kids this is where they have to clip their permission slips so that you will see them and sign them.  Remind everyone before/after dinner “slips are all on the clip yes?”

Do Now Activity 

In most classrooms, up through High School you will see these written on the board.  The kids enter the classroom and immediately look to the Do Now to see what they have to do on entering the room.  The hit their seats and immediately pull out the materials for the Do Now and get to work.  The teacher now has 5 minutes to get things together for the class!  Give them a “Do Now” fun activity while they sit at the restaurant table and wait for meals to be served. They will quickly get used to the routine. It can be as simple as a plain piece of paper and crayons and ask them to draw a specific thing (frog, chicken…).

Picture Chart

Create a picture chart for the morning routine (or any time of day routine that you need to get through). In all classrooms, you will see a chart that shows how to write a book report or how to’s for all kinds of other things.  If you have the same morning/evening routine every day have the kids help you create a poster that shows all the steps in order.  Number them too so they have another opportunity to learn their numbers.  

The Classroom Helper Board

Kids love to help out. Classrooms have the “classroom helper” board and pins, pegs, or sticks to show who is assigned each particular task that week.  Use this system to rotate chores between kids or if there are things that the kids often fight over.

Use Command Hooks

These are great to place things at kids’ height. This allows you to move things up as they grow.  If they can’t reach the hook to hang their coats then the coat is going straight on the floor.  

7 Things You Can Borrow From Early Elementary Teachers To Keep Your Little Ones Organized
7 Things You Can Borrow From Early Elementary Teachers To Keep Your Little Ones Organized

Sarah Moore is a business strategist who turns women business owners into CEOs.  She has over 20 years’ experience of slaying chaos in the corporate world as well as at home as a single mom to two, now mostly grown daughters. To learn more about Sarah you can visit her Facebook page here.

The Power In A Guest Post

The Power In A Guest Post

Whether you blog as your business or blog to drive traffic to your business or if you do not even have a blog yet, there is power in a guest post.

A guest post is simply content that you write for someone else’s blog. It will usually center around a topic that centers something you provide, either a product or service. Usually, the host of the guest post, will allow you short bio and a link back to your your site or shop. You can see how this can be valuable. There are many reasons why there is a power in a guest post, I’ll share those below.

Reach a new audience

It’s no secret that the most obvious reason to guest post for another’s blog is to reach a new audience. The value in getting your content in front of fresh eyes is more than enough reason to guest post, but actually leads into ALL of the other reasons I am going to mention below.

It’s also a huge win for the host to provide an opening to guest posts. It is less writing they need to do at the moment and they will your audience as well.

Show up as an expert and gain new subscribers

Show off your brilliance to this new audience. Show up as an expert out of service to the readers. Whether you are teaching something, offering inspiration, or a story, provide value and gain new fans for your established blog or brand. This is a great way to get more subscribers on your email list and new fans for whatever sell. Offer a content upgrade along with your guest post, if allowed by the host.

Promote your business or services to a new audience

Choose topics to submit as guest posts that can easily lead into something you offer whether a product or service. When you write for a cold (I dislike that term) new audience, select topics that are directly related to what you do or sell. If you are a shop owner and sell coffee mugs, then you may want to write about morning routines. If you are a blogger that also provides VA services, then write about one aspect of blogging. This way you can draw in the people who need what you write about. Warm up those leads to become your newest fans.

Share on social media which helps your host get more traffic to their site

When you guest post for someone, chances are that you will be asked to share to your social media platforms as well as the host sharing it to theirs. This is only common courtesy. If you think about it, this helps both people reach new audience, because it will draw upon your audience to subscribe or follow the host in addition to you. It’s a win-win!

Make new friends, meet new people, stay in touch for future collaborations

Guest posting is a great way to meet new people online and make connections for future collaborations. You never know when you may do a joint venture promotion with someone you guest posted for. Often times, you end becoming blogging besties and share each others content and collaborate in other ways as well.

Some tips for writing a top notch guest post:

  • Provide valuable content that is more than helpful to the reader
  • Ask the host for guidelines (also ask if you may include a link to a content upgrade landing page)
  • Ask the host for a media kit (you have to know if it is worth your time to write a banging post)
  • Break up your content into subsections for easy reading
  • Do the keyword research ahead of time to make sure the content and title are spot on

Where to find a host for a guest post:

  • Ask in Facebook groups
  • Search the collaboration threads in Facebook groups
  • Stalk other blogs you love that align with your own content and reach out to them
  • Ask your audience via email or social media if they are blog authors and would like a guest post

Are you interested in contributing to the Mom Life Collective? We would love to have you write for us! Visit here for more information and topics of interest. SaveSave