Nutrition

Most people have difficulties with food. Either they eat too much, not getting the proper nutrients, or eat too little. Hunger is the lack of basic foods. When you are hungry your brain initiate a physiology response that prompts you to seek food for the energy and nutrients your body needs for proper functioning. Nutrition is the science that investigates the relationship between physiology function and the essential elements of the food we eat.

Food provides the chemicals we need for activity and body maintenance. Our bodies cannot synthesize certain essential nutrients. There are six groups of essential nutrients. Four of the six we need in large amounts are macronutrients, water, proteins, carbohydrates, and fats. The other two groups are micronutrients, vitamins and minerals, which we need smaller amounts. The digestive system must break down lager food particles into smaller, more usable forms before the body can use foods. First, the mouth prepares for the food by increasing production of saliva and contains an enzyme that begins breaking down some carbohydrates. From there, the food passes down the esophagus. In the stomach, food is mixed by muscular contractions and is broken down with enzymes and stomach acids. Further digestive activity and absorption of nutrients takes place in the small intestine. Water and salt are reabsorbed into the system by the large intestine. Solid waste movies into the rectum and is passed out through the anus.

Dietary Reference Intakes (DRIs) is the recommended amounts of each nutrient group. The Food and Nutrition Board of the Institute of Medicine publishes the DRIs. They established the amount of each nutrient needed to prevent deficiencies or reduce the risk of chronic disease, and identify maximum safe intake levels for healthy people. The DRIs are umbrella guidelines of the following categories: Recommended Dietary Allowances, Adequate Intakes, Tolerable Upper Intake Levels, and Acceptable Macronutrient Distribution Ranges. RDAs, AIs, and ULs are expressed as amounts. AMDRs are expressed as percentages. Kilocalorie is the unit of measure used to quantify the amount of energy in food. Kilocalorie is also known as calorie. Energy is defined as the capacity to do work.

Water is an important nutrient that we need. As humans, we can only survive for 1 week without water. If a person has an abnormal depletion of body fluids it’s known as dehydration. A person can also have too much water, hypomatremia, which can have serious risk to your health. Our bodies contain 50-70% water. Water in our system baths cells, aid in fluid and electrolyte balance, and maintain pH balance, and transports molecules and cells throughout the body. Water is also a major component of blood, which carries oxygen and nutrients to the tissues, removes metabolic waste, and keeps cells in working order. Dietary factors, age, size, overall health, environmental temperature and humidity, and exercise are varies on how much water you need.

Protein, most abundant substance in the human body, is another important essential nutrient. Protein is the “body builders” of nearly every cell. Their role is to develop and repair bone, muscle, skin, and blood cells. Proteins help transport iron, oxygen, and nutrients to all body cells, and supply another source of energy to cells when fats and carbohydrates are not available. Nine of the 20 amino acids are broken down in the body to obtain from your diet. The body can produce the other 11. Dietary protein that supplies all the essential amino acids is complete protein, usually from protein animal products. Incomplete proteins are proteins from plant sources and lack one or more of the essential amino acids.

Another essential nutrients are the carbohydrates. Carbohydrates supply the body with energy needed to sustain normal daily activities. The body metabolizes carbohydrates more quickly and efficiently than it does proteins for a quick source of energy. Carbohydrates are converted into glucose that fuels the body’s cells. Carbohydrates come in two forms simple and complex. Simple carbohydrates, simple sugar, are found naturally in fruits, vegetables, and dairy. Most common form is glucose. Glucose and fructose, fruits and berries, are monosaccharaides. Glucose provides energy to cells. Disaccharides are combination of two monosaccharaides. Sucrose, lactose, and maltose are common disaccharides. Complex carbohydrates are grains, cereals legumes, and other vegetables. These are called polysaccharides, long chains of monosaccharaides. Starches, glycogen, and fiber are also complex carbohydrates.

Fats are the most energy dense that fuels our bodies. Fats play a vital role in maintaining healthy skin and hair, insulting body organs against shock, maintaining body temperature, and promotion healthy cell function. Fats can make food taste better and carry vitamins A, D, E, and K to cells in the body. Fats can also make you feel full after eating. Some fats are less healthy than others because excessive consumption of fats can lead to weight gain. Triglycerides are the most common form of fat, 95% of total body fat, circulating in the blood. The liver converts the excess into triglycerides, which is stored throughout the body. Cholesterol, oily substances found in foods derived from animals, is other oil that we don’t not need to consume a lot of. This is because our livers can make all the cholesterol that we need. Neither triglycerides nor cholesterol can travel myself itself through the bloodstream. Lipoproteins, protein coat, covers triglycerides and cholesterol to help them move through the bloodstream. High-Density lipoproteins (HDLs) are high in protein and low in cholesterol and triglycerides. The high levels of HDLs are healthful in the blood because HDLs remove cholesterol from dying cells and from plagues within blood vessels, eventually transporting cholesterol to the liver and eliminating it from the body. However, low-density lipoproteins (LDLs) is much higher in both cholesterol and triglycerides than HDLs. LDLs travels in the bloodstream delivering cholesterol to body cells. LDLs is not taken up by cells degrade and release their cholesterol into the bloodstream. This cholesterol can then stick to the lining of blood vessels, contributing to the plaque that causes heart disease. Trans fatty acids can be very harmful to a person’s health. Trans fatty acids are found in processed foods made with partially hydrogenated oils.

Vitamins and Minerals are the last of the essential nutrients. Vitamins are organic compounds that promote growth and help maintain life and health. Vitamins help maintain nerves and skin, produce blood cells, build bones and teeth, heal wounds, and convert food energy to body energy. Vitamins can be fat or water-soluble. Vitamins A, D, E, and K are fat-soluble and C and B-complex are water-soluble. Minerals are the inorganic, indestructible elements that aid physiological processes within the body. Without minerals, vitamins could not be absorbed. Major minerals are the minerals that the body needs in fairly large amounts, sodium, calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, potassium, sulfur, and chloride. Trace minerals, iron, zinc, manganese, coppers, fluoride, are only needed in small amounts.

Functional food or “super foods” are foods that confer health benefits beyond the nutrients they contribute to the diet. Antioxidants are the most popular functional foods. Salmon, yogurt, and cocoa are some super foods.

Reading and understanding food labels is very important! FDA and USDA developed the Nutrition Facts panel that is displayed on the back of food packages. % Daily values tells you how much of an average adult’s allowance for a particular substance, fiber, fat, carbs, etc. The %DV is calculated based on a 2,000 calorie per day. Its important to understand what a label is says.

My Plate food guidance system takes into consideration the dietary and caloric needs for a wide variety of individuals, such as pregnant or breast-feeding women, those trying to lose weight and adults with different activity levels. MyPlate encourages consumers to eat health through three areas:

  1. Balance calories. Finding out how many calories you need a day is the first step in managing your weight. Physically active also helps you be able to balance calories. Enjoying you food, but eating less. Avoid oversized portions.
  2. Increase some foods. Eat more vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and fat-free or 1% milk and dairy products. These foods have the nutrients you need for your health, like fiber, vitamins D, calcium, and potassium. Make half your plate fruits and vegetables. Choose vegetables that are red, orange, and dark-green vegetables. Have fruit added to your meals, like a side dish or dessert. Make at least half of your grains whole grain. Switch to fat-free or 1% milk. Experiment with some spices and herbs. Using spices and herbs will help eliminate extra sodium to your meals.
  3. Reduce some foods. Cut back on foods that are high in soil fats like added sugars, and salts. Compare sodium in foods like soup, bread, and frozen meals. Choosing low sodium items are better. Drink water instead of sugary drinks.

Vegetarianism and organic foods are the next in chapter 8. Vegetarian mean different things to different people. Vegans eat no animal products at all. While other vegetarians eat dairy or other animal products but not animal flesh, and some eat seafood but not beef, pork, or poultry. Dietary supplements are products intended to supplement existing diets. Ingredients range from vitamins, minerals, and herbs to enzymes, amino acids, fatty acids, and organ tissues. Dietary supplements are not intended to prevent or treat disease. Organic are foods and beverages developed, grown or aided without the use of synthetic pesticides, chemicals, or hormones. USDA is the label for certified organic foods. 81% of all U.S. families are now buying organic foods at least occasionally. One drawback of organic foods is that it’s more expensive than conventional foods. Locavore describes people who eat only food grown or produced locally, usually within close proximity to their homes. Farmers’ markets or homegrown foods are examples of locavore.

Food irradiation involves exposing foods to low doses of radiation or ionizing energy, which breaks chemical bonds in the DNA of harmful bacteria, destroying them or keeping them from reproducing. Genetically modified (GM) foods enhance production by making disease or insect-resistant plants, improving yield, or controlling weeds. Gm foods are sometimes created to improve foods’ appearance or enhance nutrients. Arguments for the development of GM foods:

  1. People have been manipulating food crops through selective breeding since the beginning.
  2. Genetically modified seeds and products are tested for safety
  3. Inset-and weed-resistant GM crops allow farmers to use fewer chemical insecticides and herbicides
  4. GM crops can be created to grow more quickly

Arguments against the Development:

  1. GM is fundamentally different from and more problematic than selective breeding.
  2. Not enough independent studies to confirm safety
  3. Inadvertent cross-pollination leads to “super weeds”
  4. Cooperation’s control the market, forcing farmers to become reliant.

Some people have food allergies. Food allergy or hypersensitivity is abnormal response to a food that is triggered by the immune system. An allergic reaction can vary and may cause tingling sensation in the mouth; swelling of whelps, tongue, and throat; difficulty breathing; hives, abdominal cramps; diarrhea; drop in blood pressure; loss of consciousness; and death. These symptoms may appear within seconds to hours after eating the foods to which one is allergic. Food intolerance can cause symptoms of gastric upset but the upset is not the result of an immune system response.

Nutrition is key to my health aspect of clean eating! Clean eating is a huge part of nutrition. Having a balance and healthy nutrition is a key component of clean eating. Making sure to have a balance healthy relationship is important. Going to my dietitian very week has helped me make the right choices. She uses a similar plate as the MyPlate. I also use the app MyFitness Pal to help me track my calories,water and Macros.

Since I have been feeling much bette. I have gotten back to my clean eating habits. I struggled a little bit of the weekend, I finally got my appetite and I ate. This week i am going to start back at the gym and tracking. I wasn’t tracking the last week and half.

 

My dinner plate for most nights..very hopefully to keep trackimg_4231

my brothers, their girlfriends, myself, and my cousin Andrew with his wife. img_4396

Alcohol and Tobacco 

Chapter 7 is all about alcohol and tobacco. Approximately half of all Americans consume alcohol regularly, while 21% abstain altogether. In the late 1970s until 2000, there was a decline in alcohol consumption. However between 2000-2009 there was a slight increase linked to the downturn of the U.S. Economy. In 2009, the alcohol consumption has decreased once again because of the stronger economy and growing more attention to personal health. Cigarette smoking has declined majorly of the last 50 years. However, tobacco use is still the single most preventable cause of death in the U.S. Smoking cigarettes kills more American than alcohol, car accidents, suicide, AIDS, homicide, and illegal drugs combined. 

Alcohol is the most poplar drug on college campuses. 40% of all college students engage in binge drinking. Binge drinking is consuming five or more drinks for men or four or more drinks for women in about a 2 hour spanned. Binge drinking can quickly lead to extreme intoxication, unconsciousness, alcohol poisoning, and even death. Some students binge drink because it’s to “have fun”, others do it to cope with stress, boredom, anxiety, or acedemic and social pressure. 

Ethyl alcohol or ethanol is the intoxicating substance found in beer, wine, liquor, and liqueurs. Ethyl is produced during fermentation. Fermentation is when the yeast organisms break down plant divers, yielding ethanol and carbon dioxide. Beer, wine, and ales end at this process. However, hard liquor is produced further through distillation. Distillation is in which the alcohol vapors are condensed and mixed with water to make the final product. Each alcoholic drink has a proof, the measure of its percentage of alcohol. A standard drink contains about 14 grams of pure alcohol. A 12-oz can of beer, 5-oz glass of wine, and 1.5 oz shot of vodka are considered a standard drink. Blood alcohol concentration(BAC) is the ratio of alcohol to total blood volume. BAC is the primary method used to measure physiological and behavioral effects of alcohol. If a person has a BAC of 0.08 or up they would be considered always impaired. Some short-term health effects slowed reaction time, slurred speech, high BAC’s can lead to coma and death, impaired judgement and motor coordination, dulled senses of taste and smell, flushing, sweating, heat loss, lowered blood pressure, nausea, increased urination, or decreased pulse and respiratory rate. Some long-term effects are memory impairment, damage/destroyed brain cells, lowered disease resistance, weakened heart muscle, increased risk of live cancer, fatty liver and cirrhosis, increased risk of osteoporosis, and/or increased risk of cancers of the mouth, esophagus, stomach, pancreas, and colon. 

Chapter 6 felt with addiction. Someone can be addicted to alcohol. Alcoholism or alcohol dependency are the results when personal and health problems related to alcohol use are serve and stopping alcohol use causes withdrawal symptoms. Biological, family, social and cultural factors can result if a person could become a alcoholic. Personally, I am at a higher risk of abusing alcohol. Both my mother and father sides of the family has struggled with alcohol. When I was going through my break up last fall, I relayed on alcohol too much. I drank to not feel the pain that I was going through. It wouldn’t be every night but when I went out with family or friends I would most likely get a “buzz”. Around spring of this year, I noticed what I was doing. After this I stop drinking for a little bit to focus on myself and to find another outlet of my pain. Now alcohol and I have a safe and healthy relationship. I don’t go out to get drunk like I did. 

The next topic in this chapter is tobacco. Tobacco use is widespread in the United States. The cost of tobacco for the nation is $289 to $333 billion per year. Tobacco can be smoking or smoking less form. Both forms of smoking contain nicotine. Nicotine is a highly addictive chemical stimulate that is the major psychoactive substance. Cigarettes (fillered or clove), cigars, pipes and hookahs, bids are all smoked types of tobacco. Chewing tobacco, dipping and snuff are tobacco that are either chewed. Some short-term effects of smoking are lightheadnesses, increases respiratory rate, suppresses appetite, increases blood sugar levels and production of adrenaline and pulse and blood pressure and induces fatigue. Some long-term health effects are addiction and nicotine cravings, stained fingers, excess wrinkling, increased risk of gum disease and cancers; ora cavity, throat, and larynx and susceptibility to colds, flu, pneumonia, and asthma, and increased risk of stoke and heart disease. I have never smoked cigarettes in my life. I had no desire too. However I had lots of friends that did. One of my close friends just quit smoking over the summer. She was noticing that she was getting sicken often and having crappy. She quit “cold turkey”. 

These two topic can relate to my health aspect of cleaning eating. To have a clean eating life style you need to stay away from and anything that will harm your body. As I said above, I don’t smoke. However, I do enjoy a glass a wine or beer every once and a while. I try to be aware on how many I consume. 

This week, like I said from my last blog, I have been sick. Still soup, oj, water, tea,crackers and toast. Today I tried a smoothie, which settled well. So hoping tomorrow to add more foods. I bundled up and took a 20 minute walk around the block to get some fresh air. Hoping that will help! 

This picture is from today while snuggling on the couch with my pup Jacoby! Gotta love the Randolph nose! 

Addiction and Drug Abuse

Addition and drug abuse is a major issue in the United Sates. So many people are addicted to some type of drug, either process addictions (addictive behaviors) or illegal or legal drugs. Addition is continued use of a substance or activity despite ongoing negative consequences. All addictions share four common symptoms; compulsion, loss of control, negative consequences, and denial. The biopsychosoical model of addiction takes into account biological or genetic factors as well as psychological and environmental influences in understanding the addiction process. The model also touches on the social learning theory. Social learning theory proposes that people learn behaviors by watching role models. These role models could be parents, caregivers, significant other or celebrities. Family and friends of an addicted person struggle with codependency. Codependence are family members or friends who are controlled by an addict’s behavior. Enablers are people who protect addicts from consequences of their behaviors. Addictive behaviors or process addictions are behaviors known to be addictive because they are mood altering. Some process addictions are gambling disorder, compulsive buying, technology addictions, work addiction, excercise addition, sexual addiction, and multiple additions.

There are many different ways that drugs can enter someone’s system. Snorting, oral ingestion, inhalation, transdermal, and injection are the ways that a drug can enter. Snorting: drug is absorbed through mucous membranes into bloodstream

Oral ingestion: drug is absorbed into the bloodstream in the stomach and small intestine, then passes through the liver before being circulated throughout the body

Inhalation: drug enters the bloodstream through capillaries in the lungs

Transdermal: drug is absorbed into the bloodstream through the skin

Injection: intravenously injected drug enters bloodstream directly at veins; intramuscularly and subcutaneously injected drugs enter the bloodstream through capillaries in muscles and skin.

Scientists divide drugs into six categories. Some drugs stimulate the body. Some depress body functions. Others produce hallucinations. Psychoactive drugs includes:

Prescription drugs- drugs that can only obtained with a prescription from a license health care practitioner.

Over-the-counter drugs (OTCs)- can be purchased without a prescription.

Recreational drugs- drugs that’s are depend upon how the term recreation is defined. These drugs can help people relax or socialize like alcohol, caffeine, or tobacco.

Herbal preparations- 750 substances including herbal teas and other products of botanical plants

Illicit (illegal) drugs- psychoactive drugs, that are harmful to people.

Commercial preparations- chemical substances,  1,000 exist.

Controlled substances include cocaine and its derivatives, amphetamines, methamphetamine, marijuana, opioids, depressants, hallucinogens/psychedelics, inhalants, and steroids.

Treatment begins with abstinence from the drug or addiction behavior, usually instituted through invention by close family, friends, or other loved ones. Without treatment, an addict is apt to relapse or to change addictions. Treatment involves learning new ways of looking at oneself, others, and the world. Treatment may require exploring a traumatic past so psychological wounds can heal. Learning interdependence with significant others and new ways of caring for oneself physically and emotionally. One common treatment plan is the 12 step program. 12 steps plan works with admitting of having a problem, recognizing there is an outside power that could help, consciously relying on that from defects, apologizing to those one has harmed, and helping others with the same problem.

This chapter was difficult to relate to my health aspect of cleaning eating.

I know I am off a week, and this is really late, but I have been battling with a serve sinus head cold. It unfortunately started on Wednesday of last week, I thought I would be able to conquer it with sleep and fluids but that didn’t work. Finally on monday(yesterday) I called my doctor. She recommended some over the counter medicines, Claritin, Flonase, and Afrin. I have to take these for the next 3 days and hope for that I will help. Day two and I still feel like crap! So I have not really been on the ball with my cleaning eating. ,lastly I have eaten crackers, soup, oj, water, and toast. I have no desire to eat! Hoping to finally feel better! My cat Casey and I snuggling on the couch when I was sick this weekend. img_0010

Reproductive Choice

There are plenty of different reproductive choices out there. Keeping yourself safe for sexually transmitted diseases(STIs) and/or unwarranted pregnancy is an important to health or emotional self. There are different methods that someone can take to protect themselves. Barrier, hormonal, behavioral, awareness, surgical, and intrauterine contraceptive are all types of methods that prevent pregnancy and/or STIs. Some barriers methods for male and female condoms, spermicides, contraceptive sponge, the diaphragm , the cervical cap. The cervical cap, the diaphragm, and female and male condoms protect individuals for STIs. Male condoms are 98% effective towards pregnancy. Hormonal methods includes oral contraceptives, progestin-only pills, contraceptive skin patch, vaginal contraceptive ring, contraceptive injections, and contraceptive implants. Oral contraceptives are pills that women take to protect themselves from pregnancy. Oral contraceptives are 99% effective, however the pill does not protect women from STIs. When on any of the hormonal methods, people should also use a male condom to protect themselves from STIs. Nexplanon is a contraceptive implants. Nexplanon is a small, soft plastic capsule that is inserted just beneath the skin on the inner side of a woman’s upper underarm by a health care provider. Nexplanon releases a low and steady does of progestin for up to 3 years. Nexplanon is high effectively of 99.95%. Intrauterine contraceptives are making a come back. Intrauterine device is a small, plastic, flexible device with a nylon string attached that is places in the uterus through the cervix and left there for 3 to 10 years. Some advantages of the IUD are that its 99% effective, doesn’t need to be replace till 3-10 years, and IUD can be removed at any time. Behavioral methods and  fertility awareness methods require more self-control, diligence, and commitment more than the other ones that are listed above. Withdrawal is removing the penis from the vagina just prior to ejaculation. This method is a high risk of pregnancy and STIs. Abstinence is the only method of avoiding pregnancy that is 100% effective. Fertility awareness methods rely on altering sexual behavior during certain times of the month based on the facts that an ovum can survive for up to 48 hours after ovulation and sperm can live up to 5 days in the vagina. The last method is the surgical. Sterilization has become the second leading method of contraception for women of all ages and the leading method among married women and women over 30.

Choosing contraception is an important decision. When choosing a contraception some questions to keep in mind on what one or ones will work the best.

  • How comfortable would I be using a particular method?
  • Will this method be convenient for me and my partner?
  • Am I at risk for the transmission of STIs?
  • Do I want to have a biological child in the future?
  • How would an unplanned pregnancy affect my life?
  • What are my religious and moral values in relation to contraception?
  • How much will the borsht control method cost?
  • Do I have any health factors that could limit my choice?
  • Are there any additional benefits I’d like to get from my contraceptive?

When a couple is ready or unplanned pregnancy happens, a woman goes through a process of growing a baby. There are three trimesters that a woman goes through during this time. Here is where the baby starts to develop. Its important for an excepting mother to have the proper nutrition. A woman who is having a baby should eat/drink foods that have folic acid, iron, calcium, and lots of fluids. If a soon-to-be mother does not get the proper nutrients the baby could have a high risk of substandard mental and physical development. Exercise is also important. Exercise can help control weight, make labor easier, and help with a faster recovery because of increased strength and endurance. Mothers-to-be should also stay away from drugs, alcohol, smoking, and other teratogens. When the baby is ready to be delivered , the woman gives birth. There are three stages of childbirth. Stage 1 is dilation of the cervix and the transition. Stage 2 is expulsion. The last stage three is the delivery of the placenta.

Relating this topic to my health aspect of clean eating would be the link of pregnancy. Having a clean eating diet will help the baby mature and get the proper nutrients that they need to grow.

Update on my health aspect. I am doing pretty well. I have been sticking to my plans that I make every week. I had only one oops day, Sunday. I was enjoying the game day munchies a little too much. I am going to plan on better healthier and cleaner snacks for this Sunday. I need to be better prepared. I also met with my nutritionist yesterday, Tuesday, and I have been doing pretty well in the measurements and weight. I have lost 5lbs and 3 inches since I have started eating cleaner. I also gained some muscle.

 

Myself with my mom and Aunt in NYC 

Relationships & Sexuality

Chapter 4 is all about our relationships and understanding of ourselves. Sexuality is an important role to our relationships. Knowing and understanding ourselves is in important and beneficial to oneself and relationships with others. Our sexuality is based on our self-image, how we identify, our happiness, fertility, and health. Our biological sex, gender, anatomy and physiology, and sexual functions are the beginning of our sexuality. Also, our ability to relate to others, our beliefs, values, and attitudes on how we see ourselves as a sexual person are all part of our sexuality.

There are different relationships that people embark. Some relationships are romantic, family, friends, and own self. One of the most important relationship to have with any of the above, is an intimate relationship. An intimate relationship does not mean having a sexual relationship. But being able to have behavioral interdependence, need fulfillment, emotional attachment, and emotional availability. Behavioral interdependence is the mutual impact that people have on each other as their connect closely. An intimate relationship need fulfillment. We need to fulfill our needs of intimacy, social integration, nurturance, assistance, and affirmation. A person needs to feel that they can share feelings with other, can share their worries and concerns, someone who will take care of and vice versa, someone who is going to be there to help you, and someone who is going reassure your worth and tell us that we matter. Emotional attachment is the feeling of being loved. And the last characteristic is emotional availability. Here is the ability to give to and receive other emotionally without fear of being hurt or rejected.

To any relationships, friends family or romantic, the most important relationship to have is with ourself. Having the self-nurturance  is important. Self-nurturance is having the balance and realistic appreciation of self-worth and ability. Not being ability to have self-esteem and/or self concept can damage your relationship with others. I know that I am not prefect in this area. I have been working on myself for the past year. I know this was one of the reason of my last relationship. Towards the end of the relationship, I stopped loving myself and lost myself through the past 3 years of being together. He wasn’t the most pleasant person to be in a relationship, looking back, and I started to become who he wanted me to be. Thank goodness that relationship is over.

One of the top subjects on chapter 4 was Sternberg’s Triangular Theory of Love. Sternberg says that there is three key components to a loving relationship. These three components are intimacy, passion, and commitment. Intimacy is the emotional component where you share, give mutual support, and have a closeness. Passion is the motivational component, where lust, attraction, sexual arousal and sharing. Commitment is the cognitive component, where you decide to open to love in the short term and commitment to a long term relationship. A combination of all key would be consummate love, according to Sternberg.

Throughout chapter 4, the chapter covers what makes a healthy relationship, skills to better communication, committed relationships, coping with break ups. Some quick important facts that I found where:

  • The three fundamentals of elements of a healthy relationship; predictability, dependability, and faith.
  • Proximity, similarities, and physical attraction influence on choosing a romantic partner.
  • Self-disclosure is a the key to creating a healthy communication
  • Use technology responsibly
  • Understand the different interpretation between men and women process messages; facial expression, speech patterns, body language, behavioral differences.
  • Become a better listener; avoid distractions, be present in the moment, focus on the speaker, control desire to interrupt.
  • Making sure your nonverbal communication matches and supports verbal communication; touching, gestures, facial expressions, body language, tone of voice
  • Conflict resolution; identify the problem, generate possible solution, evaluate solutions, decide on the best solutions, implement the solution, follow up
  • Coping with break ups; knowing that you are going through a rough spot, let go of negative thought patterns, spent time with family and friends, don’t rush into a “rebound”

The rest of chapter 4, the chapter covers our sexual identity. Which is our recognition and acknowledge of oneself as a sexual being. This is knowing your gender identity. Knowing if you are a woman or a man. Which is not what gender you were born as but what your inside self feels. This section also covers sexual orientation. Which refers to a person’s emotional, romantic, sexual, or affectionate attraction to others. People can be heterosexual, homosexual (gay or lesbian), bisexual.

The rest of the chapter covers the sex anatomy of both male and females.

How does relationships and sexuality relate to my health aspect of clean eating. One way it does is my relationship with food. I have battled with this relationship my whole teenager/adult life. I have tried to change my patterns, which I can honestly say that my clean eating has been going pretty well. Also, I have a very supportive family that help me stick to my clean eating. My parents and I try to keep each other in check with our clean eating. Without their caring, loving, support, I would have given up by now. But since they keep me going it helps. Also, this chapter relates to my health aspect with the PMS part. Boy, its hard to stay on track when PMS. However, I have looked for cleaner eating alternatives, like dark chocolate, fruit.

As for my cleaning eating, it has been going ok. My plans got changed during the week because of a death in the family. I was up in NH, for the majority of the end of the week and weekend. I tried to be as health conscious as I could be, but my number one focus was on my cousin and his wife. Even though I had this bump, I got back on track on Monday and have been doing pretty well on the last couple of days. No new recipes for this week. Starting to map out next weeks dinner, hoping to find something delicious to make. One good thing about the weather getting colder….soup season!

 

My parents, myself, and my cousin Bridget at Country Fest in August. img_4366

Stress…Where’s the Bag of Cheetos!?

Chapter 3 is all about stress. Everyone has some type of stress in their lives. Some stress can be extreme. Stress is the mental and physical response and adaptation by our bodies to the real or perceived changes and challenges in our lives. Stress can be a positive or negative response to our bodies. Distress is occurs when you are tired, under alcohol and drugs, or coping with illness, relationship problems, or financial problems. Eustress is a positive stress. Eustress can motivate, energize, and raise you up when you are down.  Our bodies response to stress in different ways. Not everyone experiences stress the way same. However, our bodies do go through a similar process. There are three phases of how our bodies respond to stress. Alarm phase, resistance phase, and exhaustion phase are the phases. The alarm phase is known as fight-or-flight response. During this phase, our bodies goes through a lot of different stages. Your body produces more adrenaline which causes more blood to be pumped, increases oxygen intake in your lungs, increases your breath rate, the liver produces and releases more glucose that fuels muscular exertion, and your pupils dilate to improve your vision. The next phase is the resistance phase. Here the body tries to return to its homeostasis, when your stress levels are low. However, the body can not achieve clam or rest because there are still some stressors that exist. The last stage is exhaustion phase. Here the body has maintained and depleted the stress. The body returns to it’s normal state or allostasis.

Stress can effect your health. Stress can effect you physical well-being. Weight gain, alcohol dependence, hair loss, diabetes, digestive problems, impaired immunity, and cardiovascular disease are all side-effects of stress. Stress can also effect your memory, concentration, and may cause mental disorders. Stress can also effect your sleeping. Which not getting proper sleep can make you prone to colds, flus and other ailments to effect the immune system. Headaches, tension headaches, and migraines are also side effects of stress.

What causes stress? Some stress causers are adjustment to change, hassles, technostress, a relationships, academic and financial pressures, overload, or stressful environments to name a few. I know personally, I get stressed with change, overload, academic and financial pressures, relationships. I am a type of person who does not like change. I have a hard time coping with it. Even if its a good change, I still become stress about it. Most of the time my stress with change is the known. I know I can not predict the what will happen, but I know if nothing changes anything bad will probably not happen. Yes its unrealistic. I am aware of that. But this is how sometimes I feel. Yes, I have been working on this stressor. Lots have changed in my life in the last year. My world was turned upside down. But I honestly have to say that particular change was one of the best changes that has ever happened to me. I would not be doing what I am doing right now, if this change did not happen in my life. So yes I have been more open to change then I have been in the past.

At the end of the chapter, the chapter focuses on relaxation techniques for stress management. Here the author touches on yoga, qigong, tai chi, deep breathing, meditation, visualization, massage therapy, biofeedback, progressive muscle relaxation, and hypnosis. These techniques reduce stress. There are lots of beneficial attributes to your health. Out of the relaxation techniques that has been mentioned above, I have tried yoga and meditation. I just started yoga last spring and have enjoyed yoga a lot. I feel so much better and relieved after I go to a yoga class. I feel like I have been rejuvenated. I am going to start to go back to yoga to help conquer my stress. Also, I have been listening to the book 10% Happier by Dan Harris. I’m usually in the car a lot, commuting to school and work,  I find listening to Dan Harris’s story on how he tamed the voice in his head inspiring and helpful. I am about half way through. But from what I have “read”, he talks about meditation and other spiritual techniques. When I finish I will give a review of the book. Has anyone else read 10% Happier?

How stress relates to my health aspect of clean eating. I have found that when I am stress, I EAT. I eat everything in sight. When I am tired and do not get a lot of sleep because of stress and/or procrastination (staying up late to finish assignments on time), I will throw out all my clean eating out the window. When I am tired, I just want to sleep. I don’t care what I am putting in my mouth. My goal is to at something the fastest in my belly so I can go to sleep quicker. Of course this is not doing any good for me. What I have learned from the past, when I am super stress I try to do some type of exercising usually running. Which I have a picture of myself from this summer running the Hingham 4th of July race. Running or any exercising makes me forget about life’s problems for a hour or so. After I finish I feel more relaxed and at ease with myself and my problems. Much better than eating a bag of Cheetos which will just make me feel grosser.

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Update on my progress on clean eating. I have been doing very well! I have prepared all my meals like I posted last week. Every meal came out delish! Lots of leftovers which was great for just incase meals if my night got mixed up. This week I made ziti bake with chicken meat…shhh don’t tell mom or dad…crockpot meatloaf stuffed peppers, which was tonight’s dinner (pictured below). Tomorrow night I am going into Boston for dinner and off to see Amy Schumer, so my clean eating out to dinner skills will be in full force!

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The Importance of Psychological Health

I believe that psychology health is an important aspect to anyone’s health. Chapter 2 opens up with the different dimensions of psychological health and the importance of each dimension. Spiritual, emotional, mental, and social are the components to everyone’s psychological health. Each dimension poessesses strengths and resiliency for maintaining overall well-being health and to help you through tough situations that life may throw at you. 

Support systems are every important to everyone’s health. Family, friends, and people who are there to support are very important. Being able to have someone who can help is important. Support systems will let people get help, love, and care for their aspects of emotional and social health. I wouldn’t be where I am today as a person without my family, especially mom, dad, and three of my very close cousins. In July, I decided to become a fully-time student after 10 years of being in the work force and only going part-time for school. This was a huge change for me. I leaned on these people to help me make the appropriate decision mentally and financially. After the multiple chats on how to execute the best plan, I came to the conclusion to go back to school full-time. 

Another topic, chapter 2 talks about is mental illness. I believe that this topic is very very important! I believe lots of people struggle with some type of mental illness. Personally, I have struggled with depression most of my adolescent and adult life. I am thankfully enough to have learned how to see the signs and learn to live with depression. Again, having my support system of my family has helped me through some much. 

My Support System:

 Here, I am with my cousins and mom (I’m in the middle) at the Red Sox game back in July, we had a girl weekend in Boston


Here’s my mom and dad in Nashville 

My psychology health impacts on my health aspect of clean eating. I am a HUGE emotional eating! Watch out junk food, here I come! I have always struggled with emotional eating. I find so much comfort in food. During my process with my health aspect, I have been doing well with my emotions. I have not open a bag of Cheetos puffs. I know this concept with eating will come up again next week, with stress because surprise surprise I am a stress eater too. I have been working on both of these. I find myself either going for a walk or run, yoga, or just sitting down and talking someone’s ear off. Well, we see how I am when midterms and finals arrive. 

Update on the recipes and the week. The lo mein was yummy. I was like eating Chinese food, but without all the added calories and artificial stuff. Last nights dinner, Holy Moley it was delicious! I would suggest to anyone to try the butternut squash and spinach lasagna roll. My dad had seconds, which was shocking bc he does not like butternut squash or spinach.