women 4 hope

Dedicated to addressing women’s issues.

Posts Tagged ‘life’

Tips For Increasing Your Dieting & Weight Loss Willpower

Posted by Catherine Morgan on June 12, 2010

How important is willpower when it comes to our ability to maintain a healthy diet and lifestyle?  Is it possible to change poor eating habits to healthy ones if you don’t have a lot of willpower?

My answer:  The more willpower you have the easier it will be, but perfection isn’t necessary.

No one wants to admit that they lack willpower or self-control, but the truth is, none of us has an unlimited supply.  Some days we may have less self control than others, but that makes us normal, not imperfect.

When it comes to healthy living, a healthy dose of willpower is helpful.  The good thing is, once you’ve had the willpower to resist certain unhealthy choices and adapt healthy ones, willpower is needed less and less because your new choices become habit.

If you have unhealthy habits, it is possible to change them into healthy habits.  They say it takes about three weeks for something to become a habit (or to unlearn a habit), so those first three weeks are when willpower is most needed.  And there are things we can do to help maintain are willpower during these critical times.  Here are a few tips…

1.  Have a plan for dealing with times of low willpower. Making the plan before you’ve lost your willpower is key.  Think of all the possible problems that could arise, and then come up with some ways to help you overcome them.

For example:  If eating healthy is your goal, make sure you have a lot of healthy alternatives available for the days you’re feeling you must eat something that you know you shouldn’t.  If you don’t think that will work, then go ahead and eat what you’re craving, just limit yourself to one serving of it (rather than the whole box).  If you think it will help, write down your solutions to the possible problems in a journal or on a post-it note, and review them frequently.

The most important thing is to be prepared.  Because it’s not a matter of  will you have a moment of weakened self-control, it’s a matter of when.

2.  Find ways to reduce the stress in your life.  Emotions definitely play a role in the amount of willpower we have on any given day.  If you’re an emotional eater, you know what I’m talking about.  Do what ever you can to reduce stress in your life.  Here are a few ideas…

Do what ever you can do to reduce the stress in your life.  This isn’t just a way to help your willpower, this is a necessary component of healthy living.

3.  Have a glass of orange juice. Studies show that glucose is a key ingredient that your brain needs to help maintain an effective level of self-control (willpower).

4.  Exercise the willpower muscle.  Don’t wait for something huge to come along and challenge your willpower.  Instead, make an effort to challenge your willpower on a smaller scale more frequently.  Doing this actually builds up your ability for having greater willpower at the times you really need it.

These are a few tips that can help you develop stronger willpower.  But it’s important to know that we will all have times we falter, there is no such thing as having complete self-control, and that is perfectly okay.

What are your willpower issues?  Do you have any tips you can share about ways to maintain willpower for healthy living and healthy eating?

Posted in BlogHer, body image, dieting, food, Health, life, lifestyle, nutrition, self-help, weight loss, Women, women's health | Tagged: , , , | 7 Comments »

Politics: How is the healthcare crisis related to the high cost of healthy foods?

Posted by Catherine Morgan on March 18, 2010

Are healthcare, politics, and the high cost of healthy foods related?

Yes.

Let me start by saying…I am so sick of politics I could throw-up. But that said, this is about much more than politics. It’s about the warped reality we are all living in, from the White House to our local supermarket and fast food joint.

About two weeks ago I read an article comparing the cost of health care to the cost of food. It suggests that the best way to solve the healthcare crisis, is for all consumers to be forced to pay more for healthcare – Because then people would think about the cost before “choosing” certain tests and treatments. What a shocking revelation…Who would have thought (other than the CATO Institute) that the people who can’t afford expensive health care services would “choose” not to have them? Although, I wouldn’t really consider that a choice.

*Read full post at catherine.morgan.com

Posted in family, food, Health, heart disease, life, lifestyle, news, nutrition, opinion, political, Politics, universal healthcare, Women, women's health | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Are Doctors Doing Too Many Invasive Heart Tests?

Posted by Catherine Morgan on March 12, 2010

We’ve heard a lot about too many mammograms leading to too many invasive biopsies.  But now a recent study is showing that doctors may be doing too many invasive heart tests as well.

Every year more than a million people in the United States are given an angiogram to check for blocked arteries, but in many cases the tests reveal no significant blockage.

Does that mean that all of these tests were unnecessary?  Not at all.  The study suggests that doctors begin to do a better job determining which patients really need an angiogram…Specifically, that careful evaluation be done when patients have no known heart disease and they are not in an emergency situation.

From NPR

Patel thinks that “the entire diagnostic process from start to finish needs reevaluation — from talking to patients to the threshold for going invasive,” meaning angiography.

The best place to start, he says, is with patients without symptoms of heart disease, such as chest pain. Almost 1 in 3 Americans who get angiograms today are symptom-free. Their doctors order angiograms presumably because they suspect “silent” heart disease, perhaps because a patient has a family history of coronary disease, diabetes or other risk factors.

But angioplasty and stenting–procedures commonly done during angiography to widen clogged coronaries and keep them open–have never been shown to lengthen life, Patel says. The reason for doing them is to relieve symptoms. And if a patient doesn’t have symptoms, then doctors and patients should ask themselves what’s the point of doing the angiogram — instead of reducing coronary disease risk factors.

From the Wall Street Journal

Typically, patients suspected of heart disease based on family history or, say, unexplained chest pain, first undergo non-invasive tests such as a stress echocardiogram or nuclear perfusion study to see how well the heart is functioning. Guidelines suggest such tests should indicate a potential problem before a patient is referred for an angiogram. In the study, 84% of patients got at least one of these tests, but the information they provided was only modestly helpful in predicting whether patients had significant disease. Researchers said this underscored the need to find more effective ways to recommend patients for angiograms.

Other factors contribute to demands for more angiograms, doctors say. Among these: financial incentives for doctors to perform angiograms, worries of malpractice suits if a blockage is missed on early tests, and patients demanding more specific information about their condition.

“Our whole system is incented to do more,” says Chet Rihal, a cardiologist and director of the catheterization clinic at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. “We’ve got to get much smarter about how we’re ordering and interpreting these tests.”

What do you think?  Do the benefits of angiograms outweigh the risks for patients without known heart disease?

Posted in Health, heart disease, life, news | Tagged: , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Eat Healthy For Life, Not For Weight Loss

Posted by Catherine Morgan on March 5, 2010

Eat Healthy For Life Not Weight Loss

We know that the food we choose to put into our body can have a huge affect on our health and quality of life, but many of us still choose to eat unhealthy foods.  Let’s face it, the unhealthy stuff tastes really good, and we don’t usually have cravings for healthy food.  That’s exactly why obesity is such a large problem for both adults and children in our country…But is dieting the answer?  I don’t think so.  As we all know, dieting can often lead to a roller coaster of weight loss and weight gain, that leaves many weighing more in the long run.

So if dieting isn’t the answer…What is?

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in body image, chronic illness, dieting, food, Health, life, nutrition, self-help, teens, thoughts, weight loss, Women, women's health | Tagged: , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Avon Foundation’s Breast Cancer Forum: Interview With Dr. Laura Esserman

Posted by Catherine Morgan on March 1, 2010

I was honored to be asked to attend the Avon Foundation’s Breast Cancer Forum last week in San Francisco.  And I have a lot of information to share with everyone.  I’m going to start with an interview I did with Dr. Laura Esserman.  If the name doesn’t sound familiar, she was one of the researchers behind the controversial change in mammogram recommendations.  I wrote about it for BlogHer back in November in a post titled…

Breast Cancer Screening:  Are women just too emotional for mammograms before 50?

I guess the title of the post speaks to where I stand on the issue.

Although my feelings on this topic are contrary to Dr. Esserman’s point of view, I do think that she believes she has a woman’s best interest at heart.

This is from Dr. Laura Esserman’s bio

Dr. Laura Esserman, a nationally known breast surgeon, is the director of the UCSF Carol Franc Buck Breast Care Center at the Mount Zion campus. Her work is devoted to developing new, more effective ways to care for and empower breast cancer patients during treatment and to tailor treatments using biology, personal preference and constant feedback regarding outcomes of care.

Shortly after Dr. Esserman spoke about her study to the attendees of the breast cancer forum, I had an opportunity to interview her.

See three part interview with Dr. Laura Esserman here.

Posted in breast cancer, cancer, chronic illness, daughters, Health, life, news, Women, women's health, women's issues, YouTube | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

What is your eating style? Do you follow one of the popular diet plans?

Posted by Catherine Morgan on January 21, 2010

What is your eating style?  Do you follow one of the popular diet plans?

If you’re looking to eat healthy or lose weight in the new year, there are a lot of diet plans out there to choose from.  But how do you know which plan is best for you?  I’m not a fan of fad diets – Even when they work, they are often an unhealthy choice and any weight lost is usually quickly gained back.  But there are diet plans geared towards healthy eating and healthy weight loss.  Maybe you’re already following one.

In this post I thought we could take a look at some of the diet plans that also focus on healthy eating.  Because, in the long run, changing unhealthy eating habits to healthy ones is the only way to lose weight and keep it off.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in BlogHer, body image, cooking, dieting, food, Health, life, lifestyle, nutrition, weight loss, Women, women blogging, women's health, women's issues | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

How To Reduce Holiday Stress

Posted by Catherine Morgan on December 20, 2009

Christmas.  Is it the most wonderful time of the year?  Or the most stressful time of the year?  Would it surprise you to know that 8 out of 10 people suffer some degree of stress during the holiday season?

Read Full Post at catherine-morgan.com

Posted in depression, family, Health, life, self-help, thoughts, Women, women blogging, women's health | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Miley Cyrus Encouraging Youth To Do Good – video

Posted by Catherine Morgan on November 29, 2009

My daughter Nicole, who is a big Miley Cyrus fan, heard about a project Miley was supporting called Get UR Good On.  As soon as she heard about it, she wanted to get involved.  The idea was to do something good in your community, video it, and then upload it onto the Get UR Good On website to encourage others to do the same.

*read full post and see video at catherine-morgan.com

Posted in current events, empowerment, family, feminism, inspirational, kids, life, media, motherhood, music, my life, news, personal, teens, Women, women's issues, YouTube | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

8 Tips For Avoiding Holiday Weight Gain

Posted by Catherine Morgan on November 29, 2009

8 Tips For Avoiding Holiday Weight Gain

Will you be trying to avoid gaining weight this holiday season?  If so, you’re not alone.  But this is a tough time of year to be watching your weight.

So…What can you do to avoid the dreaded holiday weight gain?

Well, its NOT diet (save that for your New Year’s resolution).

Until then, here are my top 8 tips for avoiding weight gain this holiday season…

Read full post at catherine-morgan.com

Posted in about me, BlogHer, dieting, family, food, Health, life, nutrition, self-help, weight loss, Women, women's health | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

World Diabetes Day: A Blog Roundup

Posted by Catherine Morgan on November 14, 2009

World Diabetes Day:  A Blog Roundup

In honor of Word Diabetes Day I’ve decided to do a blog roundup of women blogging diabetes.  Most are blogs by women who are living with diabetes, and others are women blogging about parenting a child with diabetes.  I’ve also included several informative links and resources at the end of this post.

If you blog about living with diabetes or World Diabetes Day, please leave your link in comments.

*read full post at catherine-morgan.com

Posted in awareness, children, chronic illness, daughters, family, Health, life, mothers, news, Women, women blogging, women's health | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Alzheimer’s: Devastating diagnosis for patients and loved ones.

Posted by Catherine Morgan on November 11, 2009

Do you know someone who suffers with Alzheimer’s disease?  Or someone who is a caregiver to a loved one with this devastating disease?  If so, you understand the heartache associated with an Alzheimer’s diagnosis.

Who are we without our memories of past experiences?  For most of us, the though of losing our memories to Alzheimer’s disease is horrifying.  But there is much more to Alzheimer’s than memory loss.

*Read full post at catherine-morgan.com

Posted in BlogHer, chronic illness, depression, family, Health, life, medicine, motherhood, news, parenting, Women, women blogging, women's health, women's issues | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

November is Epilepsy Awareness Month

Posted by Catherine Morgan on November 3, 2009

November is Epilepsy Awareness Month.  I hope this post will provide information and facts about epilepsy, while also showcasing women blogging about life with seizures.

Here are some epilepsy facts from CURE Epilepsy

  • Epilepsy affects over 3 million Americans of all ages – more than multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy, and Parkinson’s disease combined. Almost 500 new cases of epilepsy are diagnosed every day in the United States. Epilepsy affects 50,000,000 people worldwide.
  • In two-thirds of patients diagnosed with epilepsy, the cause is unknown.
  • Epilepsy can develop at any age and can be a result of genetics, stroke, head injury, and many other factors.
  • In over thirty percent of patients, seizures cannot be controlled with treatment. Uncontrolled seizures may lead to brain damage and death. Many more have only partial control of their seizures.
  • The severe epilepsy syndromes of childhood can cause developmental delay and brain damage, leading to a lifetime of dependency and continually accruing costs—both medical and societal.
  • It is estimated that up to 50,000 deaths occur annually in the U.S. from status epilepticus (prolonged seizures), Sudden Unexplained Death in Epilepsy (SUDEP), and other seizure-related causes such as drowning and other accidents.
  • The mortality rate among people with epilepsy is two to three times higher than the general population and the risk of sudden death is twenty-four times greater.
  • Recurring seizures are also a burden for those living with brain tumors and other disorders such as cerebral palsy, mental retardation, autism, Alzheimer’s disease, stroke, multiple sclerosis, tuberous sclerosis, and a variety of genetic syndromes.

I found this video on a blog called My 3 Peanuts – It is a very informative video that explains exactly what happens during a seizure.

Understanding Epilepsy…

READ FULL POST AT catherine-morgan.com

Posted in awareness, bloggers, BlogHer, children, chronic illness, family, Health, life, news, parenting, teens, Women, women blogging, women's health, women's issues, YouTube | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

The Cookie Diet: Can you really lose weight?

Posted by Catherine Morgan on October 31, 2009

cookie dietIs it possible to eat cookies and lose weight?  Well, Dr. Sanford Siegal would certainly like you to think so.  After all, at $56 for a week’s supply, Dr. Siegal is going to make an estimated $18 million this year selling his weight-loss cookies.   It’s called The Cookie Diet, and if you like cookies it may sound like a great way to lose weight.  But is it?

Usually, if something sounds too good to be true, it probably is too good to be true.  And apparently the first deception about this diet is calling it a cookie.  The word “cookie” implies that it’s a yummy treat, but it seems everyone agrees they don’t taste very good.  Also, the meal-plan for the cookie diet restricts the dieter to only one meal a day, and less than 1000 calories.  Anytime you restrict calories that low, weight-loss is inevitable (with or without the cookie).

A friend of mine tried these cookies because someone she worked with seemed to have lost quite a bit of weight using them.  But she told me the cookies were very dry and not tasty at all.  She also said she would never buy them again, because they didn’t work.  When I asked her about the co-worker that had lost so much weight using the cookies, she mentioned that she saw the guy recently, and he had gained all the weight back.

Here is more about The Cookie Diet…

READ FULL POST AT catherine-morgan.com

Posted in body image, dieting, food, Health, life, nutrition, opinion, self-help, weight loss, Women, women's health, women's issues | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Cancer-Causing Retrovirus Linked To Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Posted by Catherine Morgan on October 24, 2009

The latest research on Chronic Fatigue Syndrome has it linked to a cancer-causing retrovirus…

Last week I was reading a lot about the latest research linking Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) to the XMRV Retrovirus.  Some of the articles even implied that people suffering with CFS (like myself) should be excited at the possibility that this news could lead to better diagnosis and treatment of CFS.  But, it’s not exactly good news for CFS patients, especially for patients hoping for a cure.  Here’s why…

Read full post at catherine-morgan.com

Posted in about me, BlogHer, cancer, chronic fatigue syndrome, chronic illness, depression, Health, life, news, opinion, personal, thoughts, viruses, Women, women's health, women's issues, YouTube | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Bloggers For More Birthdays – My Friend Becky

Posted by Catherine Morgan on October 15, 2009

I’m honored to be a member of the American Cancer Society’s Blogger Advisory Council, a small group of volunteers that advises the Society on its social media strategy. Part of our mission is to help spread the word that we have power in the fight against cancer. And our first step is to build awareness and encourage women to get involved. Visibility equals power! So we have started a blog “chain” to spread the word among women bloggers. We call it Bloggers for More Birthdays.

You can help me…Join Bloggers for More Birthdays by dedicating a blog post to someone you love who’s been affected by cancer. It’s a simple way to celebrate those you love. Just write a post (like I’ve done here), host our badge, and know that whatever you write, you are helping to raise awareness and inspiring others to join American Cancer Society in the fight against cancer.

Here is my contribution to the Bloggers for More Birthdays Campaign…

Becky was my best friend.  A wonderful mother.  And a great mom-mom.  Even though she’s been gone for over seven years, a day rarely goes by that I don’t think of her and wish she were here.  Time has helped to replace some of my grief with many lovely memories, but it hasn’t healed my anger towards the disease that took her from us.  Cancer.

I hate cancer, and I hate that my friend didn’t get a chance to be a survivor.  Why her?  She deserved to be a survivor, she deserved to have more birthdays.  She fought this disease with every ounce of strength she had, but in the end cancer took away every ounce of strength she had.

Although I’m angry, I’m also grateful for the time I did have Becky in my life.  She was there for me during some very tough times.  I know I’m who I am today, partly because of her influence in my life.  I only wish I was able to thank her for that.

No matter how much time goes by, I will never forget the angel she was…and still is.

Becky

If you’ve posted, let The American Cancer Society know so they can feature it! Just put a link to your post in the comments section here, or email your post to bloggersubmit@officialbirthdayblog.com.  You’ll be showing your support for More Birthdays and bring visibility to your blog.

Posted in awareness, bloggers, breast cancer, cancer, chronic illness, current events, friends, grief, Health, life, motherhood, my life, parenting, personal, reflections, thoughts, Women, women blogging, women's health | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Breast Cancer Survivors Share Their Stories In Words & Video

Posted by Catherine Morgan on October 15, 2009

This is a post in honor of breast cancer survivors.  They are women sharing their stories of hope, struggle, determination, and survival.  Some are in words and some are in video.

*Read full post at catherine-morgan.com

Posted in BlogHer, breast cancer, cancer, chronic illness, empowerment, family, feminism, Health, inspirational, life, motherhood, opinion, parenting, personal, reflections, thoughts, Women, women blogging, women's health, women's issues, YouTube | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Diet: Tips For Avoiding Sugar During Halloween

Posted by Catherine Morgan on October 15, 2009

Avoiding Candy Cravings During Halloween and Sticking To A Healthy Diet

halloween candyI have been successfully off of sugar since my post Conquering Sugar Addiction:  The First Step Towards A Healthy Diet (and the toughest), but I know I am always just one bite of a brownie away from falling off the wagon.  And now there is another huge temptation – Halloween.  It seems like everywhere I go I am faced with those giant bags of Halloween candy.  The next few weeks are going to be a real test of my new-found willpower.

It’s nice to know I’m not the only one struggling with Halloween candy temptations.

*Read full post at catherine-morgan.com

Posted in about me, body image, dieting, food, Health, kids, life, motherhood, my life, nutrition, parenting, personal, self-help, weight loss, Women, women blogging, women's health | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Are You Afraid of Breast Cancer?

Posted by Catherine Morgan on October 11, 2009

Let’s talk about fear.  Are You Afraid of Breast Cancer?  If so, you’re not alone.  Cancer is a scary thing…And all the pink in the world can’t change that.  Sure, pink ribbons may be pretty, but breast cancer is ugly and scary.   Here are some facts about breast cancer…

  • An estimated 182,800 new cases of invasive breast cancer will be diagnosed in 2000.
  • Approximately 42,200 deaths will occur in women from breast cancer in 2000.
  • One in eight women or 12.6% of all women will get breast cancer in her lifetime.
  • Breast cancer risk increases with age and every woman is at risk.
  • Every 13 minutes a woman dies of breast cancer.
  • Seventy-seven percent of women with breast cancer are over 50.

Many women are blogging about their breast cancer fears.  From little fears to big fears.  They have fears of mammograms, fears of treatments, fears or recurrences, fears of dying…and on and on.  What are your breast cancer fears?

READ FULL POST AT catherine-morgan.com

Posted in awareness, BlogHer, breast cancer, cancer, chronic illness, Health, life, thoughts, Women, women blogging, women's health, women's issues | Tagged: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Lose Weight, Boost Immune System, and Increase Energy with Isagenix

Posted by Catherine Morgan on September 24, 2009

I recently posted this on my Living With Chronic Fatigue Syndrome blog, but I thought it would be good here too.

I don’t normally recommend products on my blogs, but as a person suffering with chronic illness I know how important it is to share information that could benefit others. I started using these products about a year ago, in the hope of boosting my immune system, and increasing my energy. I believe it has done both of these things and more, I just feel so much better on the days that I use this product than on the days I don’t.

This product has the potential of benefiting your health in so many ways…And for anyone looking to generate an income, the company also offers a very simple way to do that too.

These products have really increased my quality of life.

It’s by a company called Isagenix. They have many products but I’ve been using three.

The first one is a nutritional shake. They come in Vanilla and Chocolate (and they actually taste good). Even though it is “technically” a meal replacement, I often use it as a supplement between healthy meals.

isagenix-isalean-shake

The shake contains 23 grams of the highest quality New Zealand whey and casein protein from grass-fed cows with no added hormones or antibiotics, as well as filling fiber, calcium and vitamins to support the body’s vital functions.

This perfectly balanced shake also contains Ionic Alfalfa™, our proprietary blend of 70 super-charged minerals, trace minerals and alfalfa juice. Active enzymes in each serving helps maximize the absorption of key nutrients.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in about me, chronic fatigue syndrome, chronic illness, dieting, food, Health, life, lifestyle, my life, nutrition, personal, self-help, weight loss, Women, women's health, women's issues | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Birthdays: How Do They Make You Feel?

Posted by Catherine Morgan on September 22, 2009

birthdaycupcakeBirthdays:  How do they make you feel?

Today is my birthday.  Should I be stressed because I’m getting (and looking) older?  Or should I be grateful for the opportunity to have another year of life?

I know the politically correct answer is – be grateful.  But truthfully, it’s more of a mixed bag for me.  I admit that I like it when people tell me that I don’t look my age (even when I know they are probably lying).  But at the same time, I really am thankful for every day of my life.  And overall, I’m more grateful for turning 23 33 43 than stressed about getting older.

This summer I was honored to be asked to become part of The American Cancer Society’s Blogger CouncilThe American Cancer Society is trying to change the way women think about their birthdays through their More Birthdays Campaign

To most people, birthdays are just a reminder that they’re getting older. But at the American Cancer Society, “Happy Birthday” is a victory song, because a world with less cancer is a world with more birthdays. And that’s definitely something to celebrate.

More than 11 million Americans who have survived cancer—and countless others who have avoided it—will celebrate a birthday this year, thanks to the progress we’re making together to help people stay well and get well, to find cures, and fight back.

So I’ve declared The American Cancer Society the official sponsor of my birthday.  Here is the link to my American Cancer Society Birthday Page

http://main.acsevents.org/goto/catherinemorgan

Let me know what you think, and feel free to also leave a small donation to The American Cancer Society.

Women blogging about birthdays

READ FULL POST AT CATHERINE-MORGAN.COM

Posted in about me, BlogHer, body image, cancer, chronic illness, Health, life, my life, personal, thoughts, Women, women blogging, women's health, women's issues | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »