What is metabolism? Metabolism is the amount of energy (calories) your body burns to maintain itself. Regardless of what you are doing (eating, drinking, sleeping) your body is constantly burning calories to keep you going. Everyone is different and has different metabolisms based on a variety of different factors such as your size, body composition, gender, age and genetics. Ways to increase your metabolism can be through exercise and eating more of the right types of food at the right times (smaller meals more frequently). One way to WRECK your metabolism is waiting too long between meals, skipping meals and excessive-extreme dieting. I work with clients to understand their specific body metabolism, and how to eat the right foods at the right times for their body. Everyone is different. Many clients are surprised that they can actually eat more of the right food and lose weight. Below are samples of some natural metabolism boosting spices, herbs and foods that can be easily added into your daily meals:
*Dark Leafy Greens
“As an actress in Los Angeles part of my job is staying in shape. I wanted to get in shape in a healthy way but was so confused about all of the different nutrition advice and diet information I came across. Carina’s counseling sessions were tailored to my specific needs. I am originally from London where the lifestyle is very different. I am always on the go and Carina taught me how to fuel my body with the proper nutrition, make healthy choices and even tamed my sweet tooth! I have never felt better, looked better and been more confident. I love eating the right foods for my body. When Carina tells you that she will support you throughout the process and you will start feeling great from the inside out, she means it”
I am so touched by Charlotte’s kind words and so proud of her!
* All of my clients always remain confidential unless they are excited and proud to share their success
Pumpkin is a delicious, nutrient dense food and pumpkin seeds are one of my favorite snacks. I always believe in real, all natural and non-processed but I also know reality and that many people do not have time to prepare pumpkin. Canned pumpkin is a great healthy alternative. Whole Foods sells organic canned pumpkin all year round (you can find canned pumpkin at any local supermarket.) I love having a cup of warm pumpkin with a dash of cinnamon or nutmeg as a snack, especially when it starts getting cold. Pumpkin can be eaten plain or mixed into dishes. Nutritionally pumpkin is packed with antioxidants and vitamins such as vitamin-A, vitamin-C as well as Vitamin-E. It’s also a great source of carotenes that convert vitamin-A within the body. Pumpkin is rich in B-complex vitamins that are vital for energy and minerals such as copper, calcium, potassium and phosphorus. Get creative with pumpkin, figure out different ways to add it into dishes – I enjoy making a pumpkin Greek yogurt sauce. Take an autumn adventure and spice up your fall foods!
Seaweed is a super food with fantastic benefits and so many people are closed minded to the concept of munching on raw seaweed. One of my clients, an entertainment lawyer, munches on seaweed before his power lunches and is addicted to the health benefits. When I first introduced him to the concept he burst out laughing. He also has recommended it to his colleagues in his law firm. You can buy snack size packets at Trader Joes or Whole Foods. Below are some of the benefits:
- Seaweed has the broadest range of minerals of any food. It is a fantastic source of B-vitamins, calcium and iron.
- Seaweed is great for stress relief and energy. Seaweed contains two B-vitamins (pantothenic acid and riboflavin) that are needed for energy production. Pantothenic acid helps support the health and function of the adrenal glands. Adrenal glands play a major role regulating stress levels within the body.
- Seaweed is a good source of magnesium. Magnesium helps to reduce high blood pressure and prevent heart attacks.
- The variety of minerals in seaweed help in hair growth, making hair thicker and stronger. Seaweed also has potent antioxidants and cell regenerating properties that help to prevent wrinkles.
- The iodine in seaweed helps with healthy thyroid function.
That being said, branch out and start munching or at least give it a try!
Recently one of my clients asked me about heart healthy fats and how she always hears the term but would like to know what it really means. Let me explain. One type of polyunsaturated fat, omega-3 fatty acids, is especially beneficial to the heart. Our bodies don’t produce Omega-3 fatty acids naturally so we must obtain them through food sources. Studies have shown that omega-3’s decrease the risk of coronary artery disease and also protect us against irregular heartbeats as well as help lower blood pressure levels. Not to mention increase cognitive function (the ability to focus and concentrate). That being said, what foods give us heart healthy omega-3s? Seafood, especially salmon, is a great source. As well as oils such as flaxseed oil, coconut and olive oil. Nuts and seeds (pumpkin seeds) are also a great way to obtain omega-3s. Chia seeds are my personal favorite; packed with fiber and protein as well! Ancient Aztec warriors used this seeds in battle for energy and endurance. Below is one of my favorite cha-cha chia seed pudding recipes that is fantastic for glowing skin and stress reduction. My video tutorial can be seen here.
Gluten is group of proteins found in most grains such as wheat, rye, and barley. It is used to add flavor, thickness, and texture to foods. Gluten is also used as a protein supplement and binder in baking. Some people have or can develop intolerance to these specific proteins and a gluten-free diet helps to alleviate the symptoms (such as bloating, excessive gas and abdominal discomfort.) People with Celiac disease and wheat allergy need to follow a strict gluten-free diet because gluten causes harmful and unsafe reactions in their bodies. Gluten-free as a diet trend or solution for weight loss is not the smartest remedy. Eliminating certain food groups when your body processes them normally will end up doing more damage than good in the long term. Everyone is different and has different foods that do or do not work for their specific body and lifestyle.
Here are two tips that always help my clients get started on a healthier, happier path. The challenge is putting the tips into action. I work with my clients to provide them with the best support possible and create goals based on their habits, lifestyles and patterns to figure out how to change their behaviors overtime.
- Be a planner and never starve. Life is unexpected. Always have a healthy snack on hand so you never become ravished between meals and then overeat. Keep an easy to grab snack in your purse, car and office desk drawer. Be prepared for the unexpected and never let yourself get too hungry.
- Be in tune with your cravings. Indulge in a balanced way and never deprive yourself. Depriving your body will only lead to a damaging cycle of binging and then more deprivation. Your body craves certain foods for a reason. Be in tune with what your body wants and eat a moderate portion consistently so it is not considered a forbidden food.