What To Eat to Feel Great

Food, Mood, Healthy Eating, Mental Wellness, General Health

The month of November in the United States is the perfect month to think about what you eat on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis. We turn our attention to the national holiday of Thanksgiving, and it isn’t uncommon to hear families planning for the holiday and weekend a month in advance.

Before I start talking about food, I need to put a few important pieces of information in front of you so that we’re on the same page and I cover my legal responsibilities. I am a Registered Nurse, an20141115_144128_520d not a Registered Dietician (RD). It’s in the scope of my practice as a licensed nurse in the State of Washington to talk generally about diet and nutrition, yet not specifically how to treat an individual’s medical needs through specific diets or meal planning. But I know what a protein, a carb, and a fat calorie is; I know the normal values of electrolytes, and I know how to apply general nutrition information to the general public. Finally, I have taken additional CEU’s (continued education units) as an RN to become an expert in the area of the treatment of Celiac Disease and food intolerances.

[Translation: we’re going to talk general stuff so I remain compliant under state law to not encroach on the scope and practice of RD’s, yo.]

Ready? Let’s talk about food!

Continue reading

    Posted in Psychology | Leave a comment

    Flu Shot Time

    A public service announcement from Seattle Direct Counseling!

    Protect those you care for. Get your flu vaccine and recommend it to your patients.

    Yo! If you haven’t done so already, it is time to get your flu shot.

    You: “But I don’t get the flu! Why should I get the shot or the nasal version?”

    Me: Because herd immunity helps everyone around you, especially if there are some who cannot safely get the flu vaccine due to allergies to the components of the vaccine, or other chronic conditions.

    You: “But I heard that you can get the flu if you take the vaccine!”

    Me: The nasal version does have attenuated virus (weakened), but they are cold adapted. That means that if you were to show symptoms, it’s not the full on flu. The real flu is NASTY, and while most of us don’t want to talk about it, the flu can and does kill people.* That’s why the vaccine is a good idea every year at about two month’s prior to the time the flu is predicted to hit.

    Typically, the flu season in the Seattle area hits in February, though one year it hit quite early and took everyone by surprise. Healthcare workers in hospitals are usually required to get their flu shots or nasal vaccine by October. I am personally timing mine for November, anticipating that the flu season will be in full-swing by January 2015.

    Please consider getting your vaccine through your employer-based health care program, or by visiting your local drug store. Flu shots should cost about $20, and may be covered by your insurance.

    Go get your flu shot. Thank you in advance!

    *The CDC only posts estimates of the numbers of people who die from the seasonal flu. States are not required to report numbers, so the CDC has a mortality rate based on estimates.

      Posted in Health care | Tagged , | Leave a comment

      Keeping Your Mental Game On Part 2

      In Part I “Getting Your Mental Game On”, I shared  four things to help you get your mental game on when things get rough. In review, we’re talking about dreaming,  observing, rehearsing, and learning from failure.

      The next six keys will help you keep your mental game engaged and working for you. These are: developing resilience, not second-guessing yourself,  self-soothing, developing a positive mindset, adopting a self-care routine, and having fun and relaxing. This set of skills enhance what you have built in the first part of your mental game foundation.

      Learn to be the bamboo. Photo from Creative Commons.

      Learn to be the bamboo. Photo from Creative Commons.

      5. Develop Resilience – Why is it that some people get back up after they emotionally, psychologically, and sometimes even physically fall down, while others stay down for a long time or quit when the going gets tough?*

      Sometimes, it takes a series of set backs and strategy sessions for you to develop inner resilience. Resilience can have two aspects to it. One is a sense of elasticity or flexibility. The rubber band snaps back after it has been stretched, and in fact, the snap has a bit more bite to it when it is stretched further from a surface. The other aspect is that of recovery; that is, a resilient person recovers quickly from falling because she or he has strength and toughness; a fall, though it hurts, will not stop the tough person from dusting herself off and moving forward.

      Continue reading

        Posted in Psychology | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment