Most people can’t change major areas in their life all at once.  At least, that’s not how my life works.  From my vantage point as a clinical dentist for over 30 years, (which I refer to as my “front row seat”) it’s much better to START SOMEWHERE with one thing at a time.  As you gain competence in that area, you build the “muscle” of change and have increased strength to add more goodness to your life.  This totally rings true for me.

Good intentions and enthusiasm are beneficial in most areas of life.  But, in the arena of long-term change, one small, thoughtful change at a time typically leads to sustained success.  It’s so easy to say, “Tomorrow I’m going to stop eating anything white, including all sugar, pasta, bread, chips, and cereal.”  Inevitably, you remember that it’s your cousin’s neighbor’s friend’s birthday and the cake is from that fabulous new bakery.  Then you say, “Okay, I’ll give it all up forever, starting three days from now.” But then there will probably be some reason on that day to delay too!  

Another challenge that goes along with making a leap instead of taking a baby step is that it often leaves you feeling deprived.  When you feel like you are missing out on something, it can absolutely ransack your thought process and it’s all you can think about.  Before long, your resistance wears down, you gorge on a bag of cookies, three bagels, and half a box of cereal. And once you start saying to yourself, “I can’t have that,” then you start to crave it more.

Develop a START SOMEWHERE attitude by finding one small positive change that you can start today.  Build your mental muscle and find your own comfort level.  You can do it.  I will help you.

Ask Dr. Debbie: “What suggestions do you have for healthier eyes? I have a friend with Type 2 Diabetes who is having serious eye problems. It’s terrifying!” -Madalyn R

Loss of vision is a common fright for many of us.  So, what are the early warning signs of developing problems?  LIVE YOUNGER by being aware of:

  1. High blood sugar: Type 2 Diabetes increases the risk of damage to the retina, which converts light into visual messages through the optic nerve to the brain.  Blood sugar problems damage all of the blood vessels in the body, including those that nourish the eye.
  2. High blood pressure:  Hypertension can painlessly damage the small blood vessels in your eye, leading to your retina.  There are no symptoms until the damage is done.  
  3. Floating spots and flashes of light:  Remember, floaters are generally a normal part of vision and are caused by cells and fibers in the gel part of the eye.  It’s when they increase in number and/or are accompanied by bright, flashing lights that they may be a warning sign of retinal detachment, which can cause blindness.
  4. Persistent pain in the eye:  Small foreign objects can easily get lodged in the eye and cause damage and/or infections.  
  5. Blurred vision:  Especially when it is in one eye, this can be a sign of a blocked carotid artery.
  6. Eye socket swelling:  This can be a sign of thyroid disease. Muscles and fatty tissues within the eye socket become inflamed and swollen, pushing the eyeball forward and inhibiting eye movements.
  7. Red eyelids:  Rinse your eyelids with a diluted wash of “no tears” baby shampoo daily.  This will help reduce bacterial infections of the eyelid and will also decrease eye allergy symptoms.

More than 285 million people are visually impaired worldwide.  It is estimated by the World Health Organization that 80 percent of these could have been avoided or cured.  Preventive eye care is the key.  START SOMEWHERE today knowing what your blood sugar is and making small changes to keep it in the optimal range. This is a great place to start! My blog is full of strategies.  You can do it.  I will help you.

Turkey, Kale and Rice Soup (Yellow Bliss Road)

It is still chilly outside, so I am still making soup! This is a great, quick dinner recipe and heats up well for lunch.

You will need:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 medium carrots, sliced into ¼ inch rounds
  • ½ medium onion, diced (about 1 cup)
  • 3 celery stalks, sliced into ¼ inch pieces
  • 1 pound lean ground turkey
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic (about 3 cloves)
  • 1-14 ounce can diced tomatoes, drained
  • 4 cups low sodium chicken broth (or make your own!)
  • 1 cup cooked white or brown rice
  • 4 cups kale, packed, coarsely chopped
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • Shredded Parmesan cheese, if desired
  • Salt & pepper

Here’s the drill:

  1. In a 5 quart soup pot, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add onions, carrots and celery and cook, stirring often, for about 8-10 minutes or until vegetables begin to brown and soften.
  2. Add ground turkey, breaking into small chunks. Season with a pinch of kosher salt. Continue to stir frequently until meat is completely cooked; about 5-7 minutes. Drain any fat from the pot.
  3. Add oregano and garlic and stir for about a minute.
  4. Pour in chicken broth, tomatoes and rice. Bring to a boil.
  5. Stir in kale and season with salt and pepper. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes, or until vegetables are tender.
  6. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.
  7. Divide into bowls and serve hot. Garnish individual bowls with parsley and Parmesan, if desired.

“Gracious words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the body.”  This is from Proverbs 16:24 and is the inspiration for my new Snail Mail art journaled card series on Mondays.  We’ll be making simple cards with encouraging words using basic art materials.  Join me on Monday for this new adventure!

Change Just One Thing

Change Just One Thing