As you can tell by my title I in my ignorance pronounced hygge as “higgy” because that is what you do when you don’t have a firm or loose grasp on the Danish language. The Danes, who originated the concept, actually pronounce it, “hoo-guh.” The term, with no direct English translation, refers to feeling cozy in a manner that creates contentment. Think of words that may bring the Danish spirit of hygge alive in your heart: relaxation, comfort, hug, console and you will be that much closer to the idea of “hoo-ugh!”
Apples are one of the most commonly eaten fruits in America. Antioxidant missiles are loaded in these nutrition bombs. We all know about the sweet crunchy taste of an apple but many of us are unaware that apples contain an unique chemical makeup in the form of quercetin, catechin, cholorgenic acid, and phloridzin. It’s literally a mouthful, I know. These difficult to pronounce antioxidants fight free radicals and oxidative stress, which we know by now can lead to the proliferation of disease in the human body when gone unchecked.
Have you ever given your kid an ice cream cone or candy bar and watched the immediate high unravel in a dizzying whirl? You know where I am going with this article. Sugar and simple carbohydrates (you got it – another form of sugar) is jacking up your child’s anxiety. And if your child is not already anxious, sugar and simple carbs has the ability to create anxiety in your child over time. We are talking about cookies, cupcakes, donuts, bagels, pasta, muffins, potato chips, soda, sports drinks, juice and flavored milk. We are talking about foods and beverages that make the average kid salivate at the mere suggestion one is coming his/her way.
I love berries. And chances are- you do too! Beyond their wonderful taste, here a few reasons to make raspberries a new weekly addition in your family’s diet. Raspberries are extremely low in sugar. 5 grams to an entire cup! Perfect for those who are trying to follow a low-sugar lifestyle. Dr. Axe states, “Raspberries are very low on the glycemic index ranking as a 3 in glycemic load. Low-glycemic foods, such as raspberries, have little impact on blood sugar, ultimately helping stabilize it. Overall, it makes this low-sugar and high-fiber food option a great choice to include in any diabetic diet plan.” If you follow my blog, you know that destabilized blood sugar lends itself to a destabilized mood. If we want to improve our mood with our food; raspberries are one way to do it.
No one wants his/her child to feel depressed and/or anxious. No one wants a child to suffer needlessly. Many times we look for complicated answers to simple questions. Is my child depressed? Is my child struggling with anxiety? Sometimes we can find the answer with an easy test. Depression and anxiety can occur as a result of an undetected nutritional deficiency. Unfortunately, most doctors will not screen for this routinely nor will therapists suggest this in most cases. Hopefully, we can change that dialogue. So until your practitioners suggest these guidelines; I will suggest them for you. If you or a loved one is suffering from symptoms of depression or anxiety, please go to your doctor and request the following lab work:
- Daily vigorous exercise. Make yourself sweat!
- Get outdoors and feel the sun on your skin.
- Eat a variety of fruits and vegetables.
- Eat Omega-3 fats from fatty fish such as Wild Alaskan Sockeye Salmon.
- Cut out sugar and simple carbohydrates.
- Take a new class (sewing, dancing or cooking).
- Be social. Go out and laugh and talk.
- Call a friend.
- Do something kind for someone else.
- Play with your children. Hug your children. Laugh with your children.
- Start a gratitude journal to help reframe your thoughts.
- Go to bed and wake up the same time everyday to normalize your circadian rhythm.
- Reduce or eliminate alcohol.
- Read a book.
- Begin a daily meditation practice. Start with just 5 minutes and build your way up.
- Drink more water. Dehydration in its mildest form can cause pain, lethargy and even anxiety.
- Take a break from social media.
- Say NO to activities that add stress to your family life.
- Value your family by valuing yourself first. If you are depleted – no one benefits.
- Smile and choose happiness. Or start with choosing moments of happiness.
- Understand that every thought and every feeling is temporary. Acknowledge, learn and move on.
- Learn to apologize and learn to forgive.
- Learn a new skill.
- Cook a meal with your children.
- Attempt to be present in every moment.
I am not waiting anymore. I am not waiting for another study to tell me how to behave. I am not waiting for pharmaceutical companies to finally act in an ethical manner. I am not waiting for major food corporations to take responsibility for their wrongdoing. I am not waiting for someone else to give me the answers because I already have them. We all have them. However, we are led to believe otherwise.
If you follow my work; you should be aware, be very aware of the angle from which I write. I want to be transparent. If you are taking time out of your busy day to read something I have written I want you to know first and foremost I am grateful. Second, I believe you deserve my truth and if my truth doesn’t jive with yours; you have the opportunity to always walk away.
We make a choice as a family to buy organic groceries whenever possible. We want to support the farmers who care for our planet and our health. I am willing to pay a little more at the store in hopes that I don’t pay the price with our health later. Does eating organics ensure we will never become ill? No. But I would rather invest in prevention than in recovery.
“American children now get about one quarter of their total vegetable servings in the form of potato chips and French fries.” – Fast Food Nation
I am not going to sit on the other side of this computer and pretend I don’t like French fries and cheeseburgers because that would be one big, fat lie. And I don’t like to lie. Something else about me… if I see a group of people moving in one particular direction; I tend to start backing up and heading the other way. I don’t know what it is about groupthink that puts up my antenna but it does every time. Wikipedia makes it clear with their definition – “Groupthink is a psychological phenomenon that occurs within a group of people in which the desire for harmony or conformity in the group results in an irrational or dysfunctional decision-making outcome. Group members try to minimize conflict and reach a consensus decision without critical evaluation of alternative viewpoints by actively suppressing dissenting viewpoints, and by isolating themselves from outside influences.”