1 of 12 books that’ll make your divorce easier…

I’m on the verge of tears…

Women, Food, And Desire was just named 1 of 12 books to read that’ll help your divorce be a little easier.

bustle header divorce

Women, Food, And Desire named 1 of 12 books that'll help you get through your divorce a little easier - Bustle.com

Women, Food, And Desire named 1 of 12 books that’ll help you get through your divorce a little easier – Bustle.com

I had to write this book.

When I was divorcing my ex, I became totally disconnected from my body. I allowed the shame and hurt of the infidelity to separate me from my own self-worth, even though I hadn’t done anything wrong.

I had to write this book – because this culture, our shame, and the Diet Industrial Complex, are keeping us from having the love, worth, and health that we deserve.

If you have a friend going through a divorce or break up right now, and you think Women, Food, And Desire would help, please send them a copy.

And give them hugs. Lots of hugs:

Here’s a link to the original article:

http://www.bustle.com/articles/61076-12-books-to-read-thatll-make-your-divorce-a-little-bit-easier

P.S. It is an incredible honor to be featured alongside one of my favorite books of all time, Tiny Beautiful Things by Cheryl Strayed. Jaw. Dropped.

The Power Of Touch: Mindset Makeover Day 7

It’s the final day of the #MindsetMakeover + I’m sharing my favorite tool from Positive Psychology.

The power of touch.

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Touch is our 1st sense, and a HUGE ally in creating a healthy, flourishing life + strong relationships.

In our modern culture we are TOUCH STARVED and often get very little physical interaction or affection. But we need it to feel well, whole, and connected.

Baby animals that are removed from their mama or siblings don’t thrive + develop emotional trouble later. It’s the same for people. “Kangaroo care” is now used for preemie babies – skin to skin contact on an adult chest for hours a day helps tiny babies thrive + put on weight.

We give lots of love and hugs, pats, and hand holding affection to our kids, because we know they need it to feel loved. But for adults it’s harder to ask for touch, massage, hugs, or physical intimacy.

But we think as adults we don’t need as much love + touch. WE DO!

When we get enough touch, hugs + physical intimacy in our day, we are healthier, happy, and less likely to emotionally binge. Hug someone today! CLICK TO TWEET THIS!

Today I’m going to challenge you to get 8 hugs of at least 5 seconds each. A hug has the power to calm your nervous system, reduce blood pressure, and reduce emotional food cravings!

Thank you for taking part in this peek into 7-days of #positivepsychology with me. I’ll be using MORE tools from this science based approach in my next 8-Week Cravings Cleanse, which opens for registration Friday!

#healthyeah #mindset #positivepsychology #fun #friends #hugs #health #inspiration #instagram #instagood #healing #touch #love #cravings #cravecast #crave #desire

Write it, Don’t Eat it: Gratitude Adjustment

Day 4 of the Mindset Makeover!

I’m sharing some of the best Positive Psychology tools for 7-days to help you experience your greatness, and to feel that  you are worthy of the self-care, life, and vitality that you dream about – because, honey, you are!

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Write a gratitude letter, and enjoy a cozy moment for yourself to thank a great person in your life. I like to write with tea, green juice, lots of pens, and of course my cat, The Boy Named Sue, AKA Kitty Sue.

Write a “gratitude letter,” a kind of belated thank-you note to someone who has had a big impact on your life.

Detail the kindnesses, lessons, or support that person offered you and what it enabled in your life.

They can be alive or dead, and you can send it to them, read it to them in person or over the phone after it’s done, or just write it and experience the good vibes of gratitude as they flow.

Studies show that writing these letters give long-lasting mood boosts to the writer.

Traumatic experiences and negative memories tend to fade into the background for people who try these positive psychology techniques.

And when we feel better about our lives, strengths, and our relationships, emotionally charged binge eating tends to diminish, and we treat ourselves better with self-care and food choices. CLICK TO TWEET!

ONE THOUGHT: don’t do it if you don’t really feel it.

Forcing yourself to feel gratitude, when it’s not there, doesn’t make you feel any better. In fact, it can make you feel worse. If the gratitude juice isn’t flowing in you today, try writing about an experience that meant a lot to you, or about a time when you used your strengths and felt really strong in yourself. This will reconnect you with your innate gifts and feel just as good.

#healthyeah #WomenFoodAndDesire #gratitude #love #instagood #inspiration #writing #inspirational #fun #friends #PositivePsychology

I want to know how this was for you! Share your experience in the comments below. xo, Alex

Do your friends help your health + body goals? 8 traits to look for

My marriage didn’t support me in being healthy or feeling safe. The people in my “dietary community” weren’t thrilled when my diet changed – and I lost a few good friends when I was honest with them that I was no longer vegan. 

When you’re trying to transform your lifestyle or diet, or doing your best to avoid certain foods that you have a complicated relationship with, there is one thing that can help you get through to your goal of health and well-being.

Relationships.

Me & Mom. Mom taught me everything I know about organic food. How are your relationships helping you in your health and body goals?

Me & Mom. Mom taught me everything I know about organic food. How are your relationships helping you in your health and body goals?

Not just any old acquaintance will do:
we need FLOURISHING relationships where we can share our wins + celebrations as well as our troubles.

There’s a popular theory that we are the average of the 5 people we spend the most time with.

If we’re the average of the 5 people we hang with most, how are your relationships supporting your health goals? CLICK TO TWEET!

Positive Psychology backs this up by explaining our “mirror neurons,” or neurons that fire when we witness behavior in other animals, as though the observer itself was acting.

We are programed to act like the people around us, which helps us stay connected to them.

This idea is a bit scary when you think about the family you grew up with who you may not feel good around…

Or the partner who has sabotaged your health and wellness goals in the past, either knowingly, or subconsciously…

Or the co-workers who are obsessed with birthday cake, after-work drinks, and gossip parties.

What makes a relationship really healthy?

FLOURISHING RELATIONSHIPS HAVE/ARE:
* EMPATHY – you feel each other
* BELONGING – you feel like family
* ATTUNEMENT – to be on the same wavelength
* VULNERABILITY – you can be yourself
* TRUST – you’re each reliable + honest
* APPRECIATION – you enjoy good qualities of each other
* AUTHENTICITY – faithful + genuine
* LOVE – a deep love is shared

In the past I had people in my life who didn’t help me flourish, weren’t honest with me, or I didn’t feel like I could really be myself around them. Today, my close circle of friends feels much different. And I’m more honest with my family about what I need and who I am.

So even if you feel like you don’t have these flourishing traits in the 5 people closest to you, don’t give up – there are loads of awesome folks around who are looking for someone like you:

curious about real connection…

looking for fun, true, authentic friends…

empathic, thrill-seeking, life-loving pals.

I want to hear from you in the comments below:

What relationships in your life are “flourishing” or help you with your goals? What else do you see about your relationships in this context?

Get more AWE some: 3 ways to add more AWE

AWE is a powerful state

I used to use food as an escape from boredom, stress + life.

Who hasn’t? Instead of falling into those thinking traps, I now look for ways to step into “AWE” more often.

From Positive Psychology, I’ve learned that we crave meaning, connection, and purpose as much as food. AWE brings us into those powerful, inspirational moments.

AWE is a feeling of reverential respect + wonder, and is similar to transcendence.
Here are 3 ways to bring more AWE into your life, which bring up your energy, mood + make food not so important - #MindsetMakeover:

1. Take the scenic route: nature, new cities, let the scenery take your breath away
2. Immerse yourself in a crowd: concerts, political rally, running a marathon, outdoor movies
3. Go outside: being in nature helps us stop trying to control things, we are more accepting in that moment.

Share this with a friend who could use some more AWE-someness in their life!

3 ways to bring more AWE into your life – bring up your energy, mood + make food cravings loosen their hold on you! Click To Tweet!

xo, Alex

Does how you think matter as much as what you eat?

Short answer: Yes.

Our thoughts, experiences, and emotions make as much of an impact on our health and weight as what we eat.

I know a lot of you have made New Year’s resolutions,
and they might be getting away from you right now, the 3rd week into 2015.

So I wanted to share some of the best tools I’ve learned through my studies in
Positive Psychology to help you shift your mindset about food, health, weight, and your body

from frustration to ease…

from stuck to moving…

from unmotivated to joyful belief…

from floundering to flourishing.

So every day for the next 7 days, I’d like to share one tool a day with you to help you master your mindset…

A mindset makeover, if you will.

See, positive psychology “is the scientific study of the strengths and virtues that enable individuals and communities to thrive” - 
and that’s what I love sharing. Recipes and inspiration for a body and life you love. 

You don’t have to do anything special, just read along, and take the action I describe, if you’re inspired.

If you want to join in the fun in a more meaningful way, you can come follow me on Instagram or Facebook and share, post, or like the pictures I’ll be posting every day to share these ideas.

I’ll also be sharing simple food tips every day to help you make your resolutions for a lighter, stronger 2015 come true!

Now, here’s your Day 1 of the #MindsetMakeover:

Share Your Strengths, AKA “What’s RIGHT with you?”

According to Positive Psychology research, when you focus on your strengths it helps you focus on what’s right, rather than getting stuck in a negative self-image.

In my experience, most sugar cravings, when not caused by bacterial overgrowth, are related to feeling emotionally depleted, frustrated, or lonely.

When we can tap into our own strengths and acknowledge what’s right with us, sabotaging food cravings will get weaker.

When we acknowledge how strong we really are, sugar’s hold on us gets weaker! Click To Tweet This :) 

Humor
Gratitude
Love
Love of Learning
Leadership
Bravery
Creativity
Curiosity
Vitality
Kindness
Forgiveness
Appreciation of Beauty
Hope
Spirituality

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One of my strengths is “love of learning.” I used to think I was “easily distracted” but now I see my curiosity and desire for knowledge as a way that I stay engaged, hopeful, and contribute to my family and community’s well-being.

According to Positive Psychology research, sharing + acknowledging our strengths helps us to focus on what’s right with us, rather than getting stuck in a negative self-image.

When we feel more positive + better about ourselves, we tend to make healthier food choices, and our health is better all around.

In the comments below, share your strengths with us!
I’d love to hear what’s RIGHT with you, and how you use those strengths to live a healthier, happier life.

xo, Alex

Women’s magazines + the Diet Industrial Complex

Women’s magazines are a big part of what I’m calling the “diet industrial complex,” the overlap of media, food, and health experts that have set us up to be totally body and food obsessed, while disconnecting us from the connection to our bodies. 

When you are raised in this culture, you have little chance of listening to your body and trusting “her.”

womans worldThe covers feature extreme diets to lose weight quickly, right next to food porn images of unhealthy meals. 


What we see with our eyes effects our health as much as what we eat. Be wary of what media you consume. CLICK TO TWEET! 


#WomenFoodAndDesire
www.womenfoodanddesire.com

Walking to Heal. My emotional + physical cravings story.

This weekend I went for a “hike” the Santa Monica mountains.

You could call it a soul stroll.

Walking to Heal.

I’ve lived in New York City for 15 years and love my city. But nature is my spiritual practice.

It’s where I feel connected, supported, and most alive.

Walking along the rainy path, no other humans around, smelling the intoxicating dampness of Eucalyptus leaves, feeling the gravity of the earth, hearing the birds talk to each other, watching the mist rise and melt away from the hills, tears began streaming down my cheeks.

Walking, quietly, no distractions, and just being.

How often do we get to do that?

 

We humans are physical and emotional creatures. We are built this way.

Sadly, most of us grow up to think our bodies, our physical desires, and our emotions are “wrong,” or out of whack, or just, “too much.”

 

We all need time to move, and feel. When we allow emotions to move through us, especially as we move our bodies, a healing release can rise up and allow us to love ourselves.

 

On this walk, I got a bone-deep feeling that I’m enough. Just enough. That nature is perfect, and allows for the ebb and flow of our energy and emotions.

 

I got that we all need time to heal, that we all deserve whatever cravings are coming up for us.

 

Cravings for time, quiet, food, physical enjoyment, contemplation, rest. It’s all inherently good. And so are we.

I came upon this path marker:

Resting To Heal.

 

The trails were mostly closed to allow for nature to do her work of healing the ground, and I marveled at the wisdom of Mother Nature and the parks employees.

She needs quiet rest to heal. It’s winter here in the USA, after all. This time of year has us all turning inward, feeling into our roots, and nature mirrors that need in us.

Sometimes we all need quiet rest, closing down, and stillness to allow the miracle of nature to do her work.

 Your human body is so wise, so capable. You deserve quiet rest, and if you crave it, I encourage you to take the time for yourself. Healing is sometimes dynamic and fast, but often it’s quiet and slow. Click to Tweet This: 

You deserve it, that quiet, contemplative time alone, if you want it. Either in a church or on a nature trail.

There is healing there for you, and it’s valid to want it.

I want to hear from you in the comments below – are you a “spiritual mover” like me? Do you consider yourself divinely connected and directed? How do you honor that?

***

I’ve been hearing from so many new readers who just read Women, Food, And Desire, and wanted to share what they’re saying and seeing:

“If there is a women and food book out there, I’ve read it. I totally appreciate Alexandra’s approach to food. She just gets it on so many levels. The book is upbeat and positive. It is the first time I’ve read one of these books and actually FELT GOOD ABOUT MYSELF. Seriously. I am having fun shopping and cooking without all of the stress and pressure. I feel good, and I am making better choices because of it. I love love love all the supplemental materials that come with the book. I bought the eBook so I’ve been clicking away. It is one of those books you’ll read and want to give to all of your friends. Thank you Alexandra for writing this book. What a great way to start the off the new year.” ~ A, on Amazon

 

“I thought I wanted a hot fudge, caramel sundae on way home from a meeting….got in drive through line only to realize I didn’t have my wallet. Drove straight home and drank some warm tea instead! Guess what, I didn’t REALLY need a sundae and thank goodness did not eat one!” ~ S.A., Women, Food, And Desire Facebook Group

 

“This book has me seeing myself and habits with new eyes and I sense a real transformation on the horizon that has moved me to tears. Alexandra does what few people can: she actually shows you how to get to the root of your self-care challenges and transform them. Not through some weird, complicated diet, but through simple, wise and practical steps that speak to your soul’s deepest yearning. For real! Get this book. It’s about so much more than food. It’s for your entire life.” ~ Karin Witzig Rozell, Amazon.com review

To order your copy, go here: http://alexandrajamieson.com/wfdorderbonus/

Email us your receipt and we’ll send you access to 8 incredible bonus resources.

xo,

Alex

 

Warming Foods For Winter Weight Loss

Support your body this chilly season!

Instead of cooling your metabolism with summer fruits and berries, focus on naturally warming, seasonal foods, and your wellness and energy goals will be easier to reach.

Be sure you know your Cravings Type before you start adding these foods – Featherweight (AKA Vata) types will do better with some of these foods than Firebrands or Earth Mamas. Take the quiz and get your type here: www.cravingsquiz.com 


Anise
Basil
Bay leaf
Bitter orange
Black beas
Blackberry
Brussels sprouts
Butter, salted
Caraway
Cadamom
Carob
Cashew
Chestnut
Chile pepper
Cinnamon
Citrus peel
Clove
Coconut
Collards
Date
Dill
Fat and oil
Fennel
Fenugreek
Garlic
Garlic chive
Ginger
Kale
Mace
Miso
Molasses
Mustard greens
Nutmeg
Oats
Onion
Parsley
Parsnip
Pcan
Pine nut
Quinoa
Raspberry
Rosemary
Scallion
Squash, winter
Star anise
Tarragon
Thyme
Turmeric
Vinegar, unpasteurized
Walnut

This list of warming winter foods for cravings is awesome! Click to tweet!

How To Make Eggshell Calcium for PMS at home

How to make Eggshell Calcium: Cheap Calcium Supplement = PMS sugar craving reducer?

PMS make you crave chocolate and sugar?

What if you could ease your PMS with something you probably throw away every day?

How To Make Eggshell Calcium for PMS at home

I love discovering new ways to use what I already have, especially when it means finding a use for something I would normally throw out.

Like any good hippie I’ve been composting my eggshells for years, knowing that returning the minerals from the shells to my potted plants nourishes the soil.

But wait – why don’t I use the rich calcium from those same shells for my bones and health?

Several studies show that “chicken eggshell calcium is a useful way to enrich human bone strength.”

But the more I looked into the benefits of calcium on our health, the more excited I got. It seems that calcium mal-absorption and osteoporosis are at epidemic levels, as is our addiction to sugar.

And since sugar’s high acidity actually causes our body to leach calcium from our bones to balance our blood pH levels, it’s even more important that we get enough calcium, and stop draining it with poor diet choices, to protect our bones.

How can we protect our bones and naturally reduce our sugar cravings?

1,000-1,500  mg of calcium a day can help reduce and even eliminate many symptoms of PMS, including “hypocalcemia,” a hormone-induced state that makes it harder for our female bodies to absorb calcium.

Estrogen, the chief female sex hormone, can lower the absorption of calcium from the intestines by inhibiting the activities of the parathyroid hormone. Which means we need even more calcium, and balanced hormones during our cycle to help our body get the calcium we need.

And I’ve just discovered that eggshell calcium, that is calcium made from powdered egg shells, are a wonderful source of the mineral to answer this problem.

Since eggs are so cheap (get it “cheep”) using your otherwise discarded eggshells as a calcium supplement seems like a great way to help keep your bones strong and your PMS symptoms (including cravings) low.

In addition to making strong bones and teeth, calcium is critical in the release of neurotransmitters, chemicals that serve as messengers between cells within the nervous system, which means when you have enough calcium in your body, your brain and moods are healthier!

1/2 teaspoon of chicken eggshell calcium contains roughly 90% of your daily recommended calcium intake, or 1,000-1,500 mg.

And since most dairy products have an acidic effect on the body, and just can’t be digested by most adult humans, getting enough calcium from cheese isn’t possible.

Yes, greens like kale and bok choy are good sources of calcium too, but many of us are walking around without sufficient calcium stores in our bones, and it’s high time we did something about it.

Here’s a safe, easy way to make your own eggshell calcium at home:

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Wash your eggs before cracking them for normal use, and save the shells until you have 1 dozen empty shells.

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Place the shells in a pot with enough water to cover and place over high heat.

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Boil the eggshells for 10 minutes to kill any bacteria. This is very important to eliminate any salmonella.

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Drain the eggshells in a fine meshed strainer or colander.

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Place strained eggshells on a cookie sheet and bake at 200F for at least 30 minutes to dry completely.

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Place the dried shells in a clean coffee or spice grinder and pulverize to a powder.

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Keep your new eggshell calcium in an airtight jar and take 1/2 to 1 teaspoon a day for 1,000-1,500 mg of easily absorbable and cheap calcium.

I tried adding the powdered calcium to my Green & Clean Protein smoothies at breakfast, but it made it more a CRUNCHY than a SMOOTHIE.

So I recommend just adding the 1/2 – 1 teaspoon to 1/2 cup of water and slurping it down. Easy!

Resilience is your ability to adapt to and handle stress and adversity. When you feel resilient, you own your confidence.

 

It’s the bones of your life and character that keep you upright and alive.

It’s the skills and mindset that keep you moving positively forward, with hope and a sense of humor, gosh darnit.

 

There are 4 factors which develop and sustain your resilience:

  1. You know how to make realistic plans and are capable of taking the steps to follow through on them
  2. A positive self-concept and confidence in your abilities
  3. Communication and problem-solving skills
  4. The ability to manage strong impulses and feelings

 

These are the mental steps you can take to feel your strength and abilities every day.

 

But what about your body?

How strong do you feel in your physical self?

How are your bones doing, holding up your frame and moving you boldly through life?
We don’t just need confidence, we need calcium.

Chicken Eggshell Calcium Study: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23607686