Thursday, July 12, 2012

7 Quick Takes- Family Health

okay..I am finally officially finishing & publishing this post
36 BMI is considered obese- and that's what I am. I really don't know how awful I look because I haven't looked in the mirror or taken a photo (except for my face or sitting down) since I was proudly expecting our first child. I don't have high blood pressure or diabetes or sleep apnea, but I am very out of shape.  Basically, I gain 30 pounds with each child- 10 pounds is the child and placenta- the twenty pounds left stays with me. 
My first born daughter has a BMI of 26.6- borderline overweight. She hasn't turned 13 yet. She does ballet 7 hours a week and is pretty active, but she would rather watch an episode of Road to Avonlea or reread a favorite book. In order for her to be at a healthy BMI, she would need to lose 10 pounds, and to go en pointe, she would need to lose 20 pounds. Her genes on both sides are against her. Neither her father nor I are the kind of people to eat compulsively, but both of us are not as healthy as we could be. And this is hurting the next generation.

Here are 7 things we need to do to get healthier- I'll be posting and updating these at the 'feast' label at the top of this page. 
1. Drink more water! After drinking my parents' delicious direct-from-a-mountain-spring tap water, I realize that I need to go to the water store and buy all our cooking and drinking water. I shudder to think what is in our water. It tastes so bad- we usually put something in it which cannot be optimal for our health. 
2. Eat more veggies-preferably in salad form! I loved Leila's post on salads. Gotta copy that. 
3. Get back to the going-for-a-morning-walk habit! I had been alternating a big girl to walk with in the mornings. An extended period of having a house guest was my excuse to stop. Time to rev it up.
4. Absolutely no fast food! I could compare myself to other families and be proud of how infrequently that we eat fast food, but it is really never healthy for us. There are plenty of healthier options that are also convenient for busy days and travel (good bread, cheese, hard-boiled eggs, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, carrots and hummus, fruit)
5. Make doctor and dentist appointments for everybody.
6. Use all the various sport equipment (free weights, hula hoops, balls) that we own. Our house is just too small to have anything we are not using
7. Choose and frequently do a family sport- swimming, hiking, basketball. We are not a very sporty family, but we are very blessed to have health. I want to keep it that way. 
go to conversion diary for more quick takes
Have you taken my survey on religion yet?

20 comments:

  1. I know exactly what you mean. I am in the "overweight" range of the BMI right now, due to being unable to exercise as much as I would like for about nine months now. It's bugging me, and I'm hoping to, for the rest of the summer, get to the normal range. Pray for me; I will certainly be praying for you and your family, and for the health of all of you.

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  2. I read this with a heavy heart, since I too have been/am in both of your shoes. Not ballet ones, though. My BMI is higher than yours, but a lot of that is my own fault, in combination of genetics and endocrine disorders.

    Genetics. Such a horrible word. The pediatrician told my mother when I was very young, "you could feed her nothing but salads--she'll still be a big girl. It's just how she is." He was right, and back then, he was only talking about an 80 pound 5 year old. I wasn't fat--just tall and BIG. Off the charts for both height and weight since birth (although, for what it's worth, I was 8 lbs, 1 oz and 21"). At my lowest adult weight, I still wore a size 8 ring, which is very large for a woman. I have naturally wide feet. As I love to joke with people, "about 200 years ago, in Poland, I would have been some catch for a young farmer!" Self-deprecating? Absolutely. But when society/culture frowns on ANY womanly curves, what's one to do? And I know ballet has its own issues with self-image. I'm a lot like your daughter in that exercise is not fun for me. I don't enjoy it. I do enjoy how I feel afterward, but getting off my duff and on my feet...ugh. No thanks!

    I don't want to pry into too many personal details of your daughter, especially since I don't know if she reads what you write about her, but I do know that after I went through puberty, and started my periods, I did lose some weight naturally. It took a year or two, but I do remember being a freshman in high school and finding myself slowly getting thinner. Mind you, I was never a size 0 or even a 10, but it's a big deal to go from plus sizes in the beginning of the year to being able to shop "normal" sizes by the end of the year! I know this doesn't happen to everyone, and in my case, it didn't really stick around (into adulthood) but please know that I'm thinking of her and praying for her happiness and self-acceptance.

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  3. 34.2 BMI here. I feel your pain. My kids (so far) are skinny little rails for the most part, but I can see early signs of future problems in my 3 year old. I don't know any answers. I come from a family of overweight/obese people on both sides. It is so hard here in America, this land of plenty. I don't know if the struggle would be the same in some other places. I always lose the baby weight, but when the "baby is about 18 months old, right before I get pregnant again, I gain a bunch of weight. I just gained 14 pounds in a month, with no significant changes to my eating habits. Must be time for another baby.

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  4. The water is probably a big deal, and FWIW--you may be able to invest in a water filter for your faucet and skip the buying water. We installed a PUR when we were having trouble conceiving, because my husband had publicized some studies that showed that pesticides in the water adversely impacted male fertility. The taste difference is amazing.

    As for the total package--total health is a spiritual journey, and although I'm sure you already have that well in mind, I just want to encourage you to look at it that way: a matter of respecting the gift of the body God gave you. I think that helps when self-control and self-discipline are hard to come by.

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  5. I was going to say what Kate said. Your water will be fine to drink if you filter it. It's so much better for you anyway. I use PUR at home and have a Brita travel bottle for at work. My husband may drink a pot of coffee every day, but at least he's drinking filtered water alongside it. I need to get a faucet filter so he'll make his coffee with filtered water, too!

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  6. My BMI has recently driven me to diet. it's not fun but it's working. Exercise is key too: it let's me eat more!

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  7. all commenters-

    thanks for the tips and the encouragement!

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  8. we know you can do it. Your family is far from a lost cause-- just instilling a few new habits will reap great differences. I remember being on heavy anti-depressants and feeling like there was absolutely no hope left for me-- walking every morning was the key to a positive domino effect in my life. Go You!!!! -F

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  9. I feel your pain. I don't tend to gain much with my pregnancies and usually lose all the baby weight pretty quickly (although it all shifts around each time, which means my pre-pregnancy clothes don't fit quite right, that's another issue). However, I usually start putting on weight in the year after, which is odd because I also breastfeed exclusively so you would think with all the extra calories burned I would be better off. Not so, I think I eat much better when pregnant and that goes out the window when dealing with the sleepless nights of a newborn. Then I seem to be hungry all...the...time when nursing.

    So I got fed up last month and started walking every morning again. Then I changed one habit at a time (like drinking coffee every morning, then I stopped drinking soda during the week). I must say I feel better, more energetic. But I've only actually lost 5 lbs. over the whole month! In the past, I could have just stopped drinking soda and dropped at least that much in one week, what gives? I'm still nursing, so I don't want to do something too drastic to risk my milk supply. My hubby reminds me that it IS coming off and I am getting healthier so why stress if it takes a year? Ugh...because if I'm up early walking every morning I want to see results, darn it!

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  10. I have two kiddos and a history of gestational diabetes with both pregnancies and my parents and grandparents gave me all things wonderful except for the propensity for diabetes, high blood pressure, and bad cholesterol. I understand the need to get and stay fit both as an example and to build healthy habits for your children. I have a background in nursing school and I am a certified personal trainer, I think some of the best advice I could offer is to pick just one or two things to change and then add to that after a month. Trying to change everything at once can be overwhelming and distressing. Also, change in health is 80% nutrition and 20% exercise. If you are looking for inspiration for really health but DELICIOUS food, I recommend any of the Eat Clean Diet books/cookbooks by Tosca Reno. My family loves the recipes and within a week or two of "cleaning up" our nutrition, I could tell a HUGE difference in how I felt and my energy levels (which says a lot since I have a three month old that never sleeps!
    Best wishes to you and your family on your journey to better health! :)

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  11. One of my homeschooling friends does a workout video with all her kids each morning after breakfast and morning prayers. Everyone has to do it including boys and little ones. I thought that was a really good idea, since it sets a good habit. There are probably lots of kid friendly videos too.

    I struggle with weight too. My biggest problem is not what I eat, but the volume. It takes a lot of will power to not take large portions or go for seconds. I have to fight myself and constantly repeat to myself what the correct portions are. I just try to cut calories wherever I can and of course exercise. After a short time you will become used to eating less and it will get easier. However, it is just as easy to get in the bad habit of eating too much in a few short days.

    I did Jillian Michaels workout videos too. That got me into shape. It's simple moves too.

    I'll pray for you. I think getting healthy needs a lot of grace from God.

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  12. Water is great. Just putting it out there helps with accountabilty! :-) the first step, ya know! Sounds like a good plan. I like Renee's friend's idea of everyone doing the workout, but I also find that one-on-one time walking with my kids is a great communication portal and quality time.

    One day at at time. I love health websites (I have a couple links on my Quick takes post), but one of the biggest things people say over and over is to write it all down. Every bite. Aside from that it's the basic move more, eat less. You're off to a great start! Blessings!!!

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    1. Thanks for the comment- I'm off to read your quick takes post

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  13. I just wanted to encourage you to start your weight loss journey with prayer. I lost 20 pounds over about 4 months at the end of last year, and I credit that success to a novena I did with the intention of "getting healthier and beating gluttony." My BMI was actually just barely in the overweight range, but I felt sluggish and too dependent on food. My youngest had just turned 2 and I still had 20 lbs of baby weight. In the past, I always felt silly about praying for help with this because it can be a form of vanity, but at that point, I really was unhealthy. God wants us to be healthy! God wants us to be stronger than our temptations. Don't be afraid to ask for help. The devil wants us to be slaves to anything other than God, and many, many of us are too attached to yummy food. God bless! You can do it with God's help!!! :) :) :)
    -Holly

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    1. Thanks Holly- you are right that PRAYER should be the beginning (and then a walk!)

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  14. I just wanted to encourage you on you and your family's journey! My husband (an immigrant fron the same region as yours) and I actually started working on loosing a little weight this past winter and what has helped us TREMENDOUSLY has been actually returning to a very traditional Eastern European diet. This means each week we make a big pot of fresh borsht (NO premade ingredients, not even boullion cube - too much salt - we just boil a bone, or even a single strip of bacon for the entire pot can do the trick), just beets, potatoes, vegetables, cabbage, ect. Then for dinner we have the soup, a plate of fresh vegetable with hummus, and a fresh salad. Fruit is desert. Lunch is usually some meat (even kielbasa occasionally) with steamed vegetables and maybe a little pasta (all appropriate servings). Breakfast is what you want. It sounds extreme, but it is suprisingly filling. It helps waistelines and food budgets!

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    1. you are so right- a big pot of soup is the best...

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    1. hilarious! anyone need an attorney? -F

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    2. haha- I guess that comment turned out pretty spammish ;)

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