Dear patients and friends,
Ah yes, the holiday season is upon us. Let’s make this a fun addition and just jump right into it with some facts about winter!
- According to the Guinness world records, the tallest Christmas tree ever cut was a 221-foot Douglas fir that was displayed in 1950 at the Northgate Shopping Center in Seattle, Washington. That’s one big tree. I wish I could have seen that one.
- The traditional three colors of Christmas are green, red, and gold. Green has long been a symbol of life and rebirth; red symbolizes the blood of Christ, and gold represents light as well as wealth and royalty.
- According to data analyzed from Facebook posts, two weeks before Christmas is one of the two most popular times for couples to break up. However, Christmas Day is the least favorite day for breakups. I always wonder why that is?
- Contrary to popular belief, suicide rates during the Christmas holiday are low. The highest rates are during the spring.
- The world’s largest Christmas stocking measured 106 feet and 9 inches (32.56 m) long and 49 feet and 1 inch (14.97 m) wide. It weighed as much as five reindeer and held almost 1,000 presents. It was made by the Children’s Society in London on December 14, 2007.
- Christmas trees have been sold in the U.S. since 1850.
- Christmas trees usually grow for about 15 years before they are sold.
- Hanukkah is spelt differently by different people. Some name it as Chanukkah while the majority of people name it as Hanukkah.
- As per the Western calendar, the date for the commencement of Chanukah varies every year.
- Lighting of Menorah is the main Hanukah tradition.
- The Hanukkah candles are added onto the special candelabrum from right to left, but are lit only from left to right.
- ‘Hanerot Hallalu’, an ancient Hanukkah song is recited or sang while lighting the candles.
- According to Chanukkah tradition, the candles on the candelabrum should not blow out until the end of the festival.
- Traditional Hanukkah food is cooked during the festival. Oil is the key ingredient of the foods, which is a sign of tribute to the miracle of purified oil.
- Gifts are also exchanged during the festival of Hanukkah. This tradition is probably adapted from the Christmas tradition of gift giving.
- Gambling is considered almost a sin. However, a gambling game called as “dreidel” is a popular Hanukkah tradition. People play this game with a square spinning top. However, the game is not played for hefty sum, but for pennies or chocolate coins.
Happy 100th Birthday to my Mom!!!
A few weeks ago Mom turned 100, my kids and I were so happy to get to spend it with her!
>>>DECEMBER Q & A<<<
Q: What do you get from sitting on the snow too long?
Q: Why did Frosty the snowman want a divorce?
A: Because he thought his wife was a flake.
Q: What do snowmen eat for lunch?
Q: What time is it when little white flakes fall past the classroom window?
A: Snow and Tell.
More Fun Facts
1. We have all heard that no two snowflakes are alike. Did you know a scientist took 400,000 experiments to prove it?
2. Icicles form most often on the south side of buildings.
3. The record for the most snow angels at one time was set in Ontario Canada in 2004 when a couple of schools joined to create 15,851 snow angels.
4. The wind chill factor measures heat loss from exposed skin.
5. If it gets cold enough, single digits or below, ice crystals can form and snow can fall from clear skies.
6. All snowflakes have 6 sides.
- Antarctica set the record for the worlds coldest temperature at -129(degrees Fahrenheit)
8. 60% of the Earth’s fresh water is stored in the polar ice caps
9. Average snowflakes fall at 3.1mph
10. Ice is a mineral.
The 4 strategies to limit the holiday eating damage.
Some of these are taken from Tim Ferriss’ book The Four Hour Body, which I highly recommend if not for actionable health ideas, but entertainment value.
Stick to a Paleo Diet…Mostly
Paleo principles will go a long way to keeping you from gaining excess weight around the holidays. The rolls, lasagna, potatoes, bread, and other starchy foods are often empty calories and you can easily skip them for an extra serving of veggies and meat. Unless you’re training for a marathon and carb loading, you don’t need the extra sugar. Sugar ages you. I’m not suggesting you skip these foods or dessert. Not at all. Instead, try eating paleo for the first two-thirds of the meal – then you can sample the desserts and high carb food. By mostly filling up on low carb food, you’ll stay full longer and avoid the highs and lows of the blood sugar roller coaster.
It takes your body about 15-20 minutes to recognize that it’s getting full. So when you use the shovel method to scarf as much food as possible into your mouth, you’re consuming a lot more than you need (or really want). Focus on eating at a leisurely pace, sipping water, lots of water after every few bites, and actually talking to your family and friends. You’ll end up eating less while still being completely satisfied. Give it time to catch up.
More Fat, Less of a Glycemic Response
When you eat more fat with your meal, you’ll experience less of a glycemic response. This is a fancy term that simply means your blood sugar won’t spike as dramatically as it would if you drank a Coke on an empty stomach. Again, Coke ages you as fast as smoking does, so be careful with your intake of it. In practical terms, eating a serving of nuts as your appetizer will blunt the blood sugar spike. I prefer to dip veggies into a creamy ranch or cheese dip to get some fat (nuts don’t appeal to me as an appetizer…). Plus, the added fat will help you absorb the vitamins from the vegetables.
Did you know that your body can confuse being thirsty with being hungry? Slight dehydration will trick your brain into thinking you’re hungry, when you’re really not. Prevent the confusion by drinking enough good, clean water on your feast day so you won’t overeat. While a lot of fluids will hydrate you, try not to drink your calories with sweetened tea or soda (see tip #1 on eating paleo). Stick to good old clean pH balanced water – you’ll be better off without all that added sugar and you’ll eat less, and gain less.
“My idea of Christmas, whether old-fashioned or modern, is very simple: loving others. Come to think of it, why do we have to wait for Christmas to do that?”
― Bob Hope
|“Will you love me in December as you do in May,
Will you love me in the good old fashioned way?
When my hair has all turned gray,
Will you kiss me then and say, That you love me in December as you do in May?”
|James Walker quotes|
Do Not Eat this Type of Bean
While beans are actually one of the healthiest carbs sources out there, loaded with fiber and protein, there’s actually one variety of beans you should be AVOIDING at all costs:
Fact is, manufacturers of commercial “baked beans” are completely RUINING this health food by piling in sugars galore along with a slew of artificial ingredients.
Many brands are now even including high fructose corn syrup and numerous other corn ingredients, such as corn starch, in their products…bad news!
For example, a 1-cup serving of canned “baked beans” contains more than 20 grams of ADDED sugar on average while the same 1-cup serving of regular kidney beans, pinto beans, red beans, etc, contains only a gram or two of naturally occurring sugar. BIG difference!
That said, when buying beans and adding them to your diet (which is actually a great choice), make sure to avoid commercial “baked beans” products and instead go with bean products that don’t add all the extra junk.
Some great varieties of beans and legumes are:
And there are even some natural packaged versions of the above listed beans and legumes that add a number of healthy and natural seasonings to spice them up a bit. The lesson here is to avoid “baked beans” in favor of the plain stuff (which you can then spice up at home) and when buying anything packaged, take a good, hard look at the ingredients and nutrition facts.
If it’s got added sugar and artificial ingredients, skip it!
Enjoy! Solutions available upon request.