Monday, November 20, 2017

I’m the opposite of Shonda Rimes.


 I read Shonda Rimes’ The Year of Yes when it first came out. It made the bookshelf cut, reserved for books that moved me (I say YES to purging, whenever possible). As much as I related to it at the time, I must’ve forgotten the key messages. When Carolyn suggested Oprah’s podcast with Shonda,  I gave it a listen. Shonda’s book and transformation were inspired by her sister calling her out. Her sister pointed out the number of invitations Shonda turned down. In the interview, Shonda explained that she turned down many of these due to anxiety or fear.
This is a pattern I recognize in myself. I’ll give you a recent example. I was to do a live segment on one of the big morning shows today. The timing was far from ideal as I was in Maryland for the weekend. Both boys had soccer tournaments and so our return time last night was uncertain. I secured hair and makeup magicians for this morning. 
Thursday, I had alerted the show’s producer I’d be out of town for the weekend and not at a computer. I got her the necessary information prior to getting in the car at 7am Friday. On the way down to Bethesda, I received a few frantic emails from her. I answered the best I could from my phone. I was pissed to be putting out fires for her when I wanted to be focused on the kids. I told her I’d be back at my computer late afternoon. Dissatisfied, she called my office. Grace explained my situation, reminded her I had told her I’d be unreachable. Instead of understanding, she took her frustrations out and yelled at Grace.
I told the producer this crossed the line. I am territorial when it comes to anyone close to me.
This was supposed to be a lighthearted Thanksgiving segment; I’m a nutritionist not a neurosurgeon! And I backed out. As soon as I did this, I had two feelings. First, I was relieved. I no longer had my head back in NYC. I could focus on passes and goals and my two soccer players. This was legit. But a part of me didn’t want the pressure of showing up first thing Monday morning, for a segment that wasn’t 100 percent in my wheelhouse. I could make a case this was the correct decision, as a mother. But I know myself and can try to weasel out of certain opportunities.

I’m sharing this to call myself out. Perhaps you have similar situation avoidance. Or, maybe this goes back to another of Shonda’s observations. You can’t have it all. If you are getting an A in mothering, you’re likely passing up something elsewhere. Shonda, you’re so smart. So that’s that, I promise to fill you in on the Thanksgiving nutrition specifics later in the week. Oh, one last point the producer above the scattered producer called to apologize. She was lovely and said this wasn’t a reflection on the network or Megyn J

Friday, November 10, 2017

Bad moms and wine moms


 There’s a bit of a brouhaha over the recent Bad Mom’s Christmas movie. I haven’t seen the movie, though I watched the first one. The issue being debated is this concept of a “wine mom” and the coupling of motherhood and alcohol. Is this an innocuous combination?  Or is it concerning, something not to be joked about?

When my younger son was in preschool, we had a playgroup. We referred to ourselves as the Winos. I’m not even a wine lover but cherished these gatherings. Thursdays, late afternoon, we’d meet at one of our apartments. There was wine and cheese (I am a cheese lover for sure). We’d hang out and catch up and the toddlers would do their thing. There were more than a couple of times we pushed strollers home or got in taxis feeling a little buzzed. In the city, none of us were driving, this wouldn’t have been a good idea. As your kids get older, you don’t have parents over as much as kids are independent so I miss those get-togethers.

I had no negative associations between booze and babies for a long time. I started to question things when I attended a discussion of Elizabeth Vargas’s memoir. Elizabeth has discussed her alcoholism candidly. What was eye-opening for me, at this event, were the comments in the audience. One person strongly objected to the “wine o’clock” concept and all the humor surrounding drinking. Another found it difficult to navigate motherhood with so many events centered upon alcohol. I am definitely someone who makes these jokes, posts alcohol-centric items on Instagram and has had wine at some of my children’s birthday parties. I would never like to be insensitive and so it got me thinking.

Despite coming from a family of cocktail lovers, attending Tulane and making a mean martini, I am someone who has never had a problem with drinking. I have always been the person who enjoyed the social aspect of drinking but could also go a week or two without a drink. I am providing this information as I think it’s one end of the spectrum. Healthy drinking is considered a drink a day (less if you look at some of the cancer research) and except on vacation, I'm always well below that. Again- this doesn’t make me superior, it just says something about my physiology.

On the other end of the spectrum, this article shows that there is a huge rise in high risk drinking, defined here as up to 4 drinks a day. From 2002 (coincidentally when my first child was born) until 2013 there was a 58% increase in high risk drinking. In my experience with clients, many women fall somewhere between drinking being a non-issue and alcoholism.  And there’s a lot of guilt and questions surrounding drinking. I am not an alcohol expert but I think one drink a day is a good litmus test. If you can have one drink and stop there, I’d say there’s likely not a problem. When that’s impossible, it’s worth looking into it further. Scratch that, I think it’s worth looking into further for all of us. Why we drink, when we drink and how we feel after drinking is an important piece of the wellness puzzle.
Should I not say “cheers” to the weekend?



Monday, October 30, 2017

Why you may want to reconsider the birth control pill

We pride ourselves on working around client's schedules, food preferences and obstacles. After all, our business cards say "nutrition troubleshooters" and our tag line is "you don't have to changes your lifestyle to fit our food plans." So, for the most part we stay mum or mum-ish when it comes to medication. We're by no means anti conventional medicine or medication where warranted. I always say if (knocking wood) I'm in a car crash, I don't want to be brought to my acupuncturist. However, there are times when we can't hold our tongues nor do we want to. We have serious concerns about the birth control pill (and all synthetic hormones frankly). And so, we discussed them in our newsletter today. I seriously hope you're signed up for our infrequent emails. If you aren't you can sign up here. But, for now, here is the link to today's "The Pill Can Make You Ill." Please give it a read and pass it along to your friends, daughters, coworkers etc.
Do you take the Pill? Is this news to you? Any questions for us?

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Foodtrainers’ Favorites from the Bulletproof Conference


We’ve been busy. Yesterday, we launched our pretty, newonline shop. Unexpectedly, our curated products have become popular and so we needed to give them a spiffed-up home. There were no major tech issues and orders surpassed our predictions, phew.
And, over the weekend, Carolyn and I attended the Bulletproof Conference. We pride ourselves on being seekers or guinea pigs, if you’re a Bulletproofer it’s called biohacking. When we walked into the conference we felt as though we had found our people (“tribe” is so annoying but maybe it applies). If anything, these people made us look unaccomplished in our experimentation. There was some weird shit.

Clients and commenters were curious about some of the things we posted so I thought I’d do a round-up of top 10 things we learned or heard about:

Bulletproof coffee- this isn’t new to us but we were treated to Bulletproof coffee throughout the conference. The first morning’s coffee kept us focused and full for many hours despite a red eye the night before. If you haven’t tried it, Bulletproof coffee is coffee plus oil (MCTs or coconut oil) + grass-fed butter blended with collagen optional. We add cinnamon to ours as well.

 IV nutrition- Yes, this is controversial, yes you must be SUPER careful about who gives you needles and yes our client, an ER MD, doesn’t agree with me on this one but I’m a fan. It’s an efficient way to get a large dose of nutrients for immunity, energy and cognition. The speakers at Bulletproof got IV’s before their talks,

Dig Deeper-Mastin Kipp (one of the speakers) provided a good reminder that all of this biohacking is just busy work if we aren’t getting to the root of our pain, stressors etc. I emailed my therapist stat. 

The healthiest wine-I’m usually a mezcal/tequila girl, So, I’m not a big wine drinker but I am a drink-only-the-best-er. Dry Farm Wines was an exhibitor at Bulletproof and I just signed up for their healthy wine delivery. Low/no sulfites, organic and the “cleanest” wines I’ve found.

And from the sleep doc, red wine (not dry farm wines but the sulfitey kind) is worse for your sleep than white. If you’re on the fence about prioritizing sleep, Dr Mercola called it the #1 thing we can do for your health.

Cell phones are scary. I know he’s beloved but I didn’t enjoy Mercola’s talk simply because it terrified me. He focused on radiation from cell phones and Wi-Fi. There just aren’t many legit solutions. I mean, I told my kids not to put phones in their pockets/touching their bodies and they told me where to go (“so everyone in the world is going to get cancer then Mom”). One way to combat the damage to our cells from radiation is taking magnesium, a lot of magnesium One form I like is this. I have no suggestions for mitigating the damage of teenagers.

Molecular Hydrogen is something to keep an eye out for. I’m talking to one of the companies today, more on that soon but I think it’s going to be big.

Esther Perel. I really believe relationships and sex are the next frontier when it comes to our wellness. Check out Esther’s amazing podcast on audible or her books. I took copious notes at her talk but one thing that resonated was that people, entrepreneurs especially, often give their passion, love and energy to their work and then save “the crumbs” for their partners. I was guilty of this, when I opened, Foodtrainers. Marc has his own business too. I’m happy to report we give each other large crumbs, maybe bites, at this point.

It’s invigorating to learn new things. I seriously get a high from hearing about new ideas, technology and the such. Whatever you’re interested in, seek out information, preferably in person versus on the computer. “Gathering” is good for your health.

Malibu is worth it and Carolyn is the best. Our conference was in Pasadena, we took an Uber to Malibu (about an hour, female drivers both ways, go Cali). We sat at the bar at Nobu, looking out at the ocean, eating, drinking and catching up. Esther Perel said work partnerships were marriages. You need to think about them. Well we thought about it, over margaritas, and our “marriage” is solid.
If you have any questions about this list, comment below. Or, have you tried anything I mentioned?