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Serving hospitals, healthcare and women's groups

For Your Well Being: Un-stuffing your Holidays

Nov. 17, 2011, Vol. 9 Issue 11

Dear Friends,
I usually write about diet book authors and speakers at the typical time of renewal — New Year’s. This time I’m turning the tables, and getting into the topic BEFORE the over-indulgence begins. Today’s featured article is by Michelle May, MD, author of Eat What You Love, Love What You Eat. With a title like that, you’re thinking, “Really, right before Thanksgiving?”  The answer is YES!

Dr. Michelle MayMichelle May, MD, CSP  is a recovered yo-yo dieter and founder of the award-winning Am I Hungry® Workshops.  She takes a compassionate, constructive mind-body approach to living a vibrant, healthy life. Dr. May’s authenticity and passion for healthy lifestyles stem from her own personal struggle with food and weight. After years of chronic dieting, she resolved her battle by developing a healthy, balanced approach to food, movement, and self-care.

As you can see, the book cover features a heart-shaped piece of chocolate, so you know she’s a woman after my heart.  Here are her thoughts on getting through the holidays healthfully.  If you’re really serious, print this out and post it on your fridge.

Save the Stuffing for the Turkey:
Eat Mindfully Instead

By Michelle May, M.D.
This holiday season, experience maximal pleasure from all the wonderful food and special occasions. By eating mindfully you’ll eat less and enjoy it more. The key to mindful eating is to notice the details. Pretend you’re writing an article about your Thanksgiving or other holiday meal for a gourmet magazine. The following tips are from Eat What You Love, Love What You Eat: How to Break Your Eat-Repent-Repeat Cycle.

  • Focus on the people you are sharing your meal with. Engage in interesting conversations. Ask questions and really listen to your companions.
  • Notice how hungry you are. If you aren’t hungry yet, become aware of the reasons you feel like eating anyway. If it’s for social reasons, then be social for a while longer, then eat when you get hungry.
  • Decide how you want to feel when you’re done eating. Stuffed and miserable? Or comfortable and content? Fill your plate or order accordingly.
  • Mentally describe the table setting and the ambiance. Notice the aromas, colors, textures, and presentation of the meal.
  • Before eating, take a moment to be truly thankful about where your food came from, including all the people who invested their time, effort, and talent to get it from farm to plate.
  • Choose food carefully by asking yourself what you want and need. Don’t waste your appetite on cranberry sauce shaped like a can if you don’t love it!
  • Put one small bite in your mouth. You only have taste buds on your tongue so the flavors of a large bite of food are lost on your teeth, cheeks, and the roof of your mouth.
  • Notice the texture and flavors of the food on your tongue then slowly begin to chew it. Breathe since flavors other than salty, sweet, bitter and sour actually come from the aromas.
  • Set your fork down between bites. If you begin to load your next forkful your attention will be on the next bite, not the one you are eating now. And if you are focused on the next bite of food instead of the one you are eating, you won’t stop eating until there are no more forkfuls.
  • Sit for a moment and let the flavors and experience linger before you take the next bite.
  • Notice as the food gently fills your stomach. Pause for several minutes in the middle of eating to reconnect with your hunger and fullness levels and enjoyment of the meal.
  • Food is abundant this time of year—actually all year for most of us. Remind yourself that you can eat more later or at another meal so there’s no need to eat it all now and ruin the experience by feeling stuffed.

Mindful eating is a great way to enjoy Thanksgiving and other meals more while eating less. You’ll be thankful that you did!

Michelle May, MD, CSPMichelle May, M.D. is the founder of the Am I Hungry?® Mindful Eating Program that helps individuals learn to break free from mindless and emotional eating to live a more vibrant, healthy life. She is the award-winning author of Eat What You Love, Love What You Eat: How to Break Your Eat-Repent-Repeat Cycle.

Dr. May empowers individuals to take charge of their life and end chronic dieting and overeating without deprivation and guilt.  Her primary goal has been to inspire audiences to improve their health with her compassionate and constructive approach.  She delivers her crucial and timely message with energy, humor, and insight that transform the way people view weight management.

“My goal is to inspire audiences to address their triggers for overeating, rediscover joy in physical activity, and effectively nourish their body, mind, heart and spirit,” she says.

Dr. May was recently the morning keynote speaker for Mikey Hoeven’s Women’s Wellness Expo in Bismarck, ND.  Mikey commented about the wealth of content she provided and that the women got images that they could wrap their minds around, take home and put into play right away.  One attendee commented, “The information was simple, hands-on, clear, and down-to-earth. I appreciated how her teachings of intentionality and attentiveness can be applied to all other things in life.”  They also appreciated her humor and inspirational qualities.

The Am I Hungry?® program has received the Excellence in Patient Education Innovation Award and is available through corporate wellness programs, medical offices, hospitals, fitness centers, insurance companies, and community programs. Dr. May has trained and licensed over 250 Am I Hungry?® Facilitators worldwide. As a physician, author, inspirational speaker, workshop facilitator, and consultant, Dr. May has shared her powerful and innovative approach to mindful eating and non-diet weight management with thousands of individuals, workshop participants, health care professionals, and organizations across the country. To learn more, please visit our website, or give me a call at 503-699-5031.

Rock Your Pelvis in South Florida
Pelvic Health Conference

By 2020, more than one-third of the US female population will be considered post-menopausal. So it’s no surprise that pelvic health is the “next big thing” in women’s health. Is your hospital ready?  Spirit Conference Group is presenting a Pelvic Health Conference, Jan. 12-13, 2012, “Steps to Success in Pelvic Health Programming,” at the Ritz Carlton, Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

This will be an opportunity to join hospital and healthcare executives, physicians and thought leaders from across the country in learning valuable information and identifying best practices for establishing and maintaining a successful women’s pelvic health service line or program – meeting the clinical, navigational and quality of life needs of patients as well as the strategic and business needs of your hospital, practice or healthcare organization.

With American healthcare in transition to ‘accountable care’ and ‘meaningful use’ it is critical that healthcare organizations continue to focus first on the delivery of effective care to their patients – and particularly women. Within the next decade there will be more than 50 million post-reproductive women in the U.S. alone. A surprisingly large proportion of all American women (research suggests nearly 25%) suffer chronic pain brought about by pelvic floor disorders. Women’s Pelvic Health will become a platform for the future of healthcare in the United States by integrating diagnostics, prevention, and early intervention across a myriad of clinical disciplines into a cohesive pelvic health service line approach.

This conference is ideally suited for Senior Level Executives, Vice Presidents, Administrators, Directors, Managers, Physicians, Nurses and other health professionals involved in the care of women and their pelvic health issues. Attendance is limited! For additional conference information, contact Dana Smith, Spirit Conference Group, .

Getting into the Gratitude Habit

I’m back in the gratitude habit again. For years and years, I wrote in a gratitude journal every day.  It’s always fun to re-discover those booklets tucked away in the corner of a bookcase, and re-live that time of life noting what I noticed and recorded as important. The truth is, however, that the power of a gratitude journal lies not in its historical perspective, but in the power of the moment.

My new habit includes keeping my journal handy on my desk, and recording my successes and joys as they happen, plus a healthy dose of gratitude for every single one, big and small. That can be everything from an inquiry, to a booking, to talking with a new speaker, to a great client report about their event (love those!), to opening to new ways to do things. PLUS dog kisses, honey love, a beautiful fall scene outside my window, healthy fresh food, Skyping with grandkids, and a warm house and comfortable bed.

I could go on and on, but I know that you have your own gratitudes and that’s what’s important for you. I hope you’ll take time this Thanksgiving season to pay attention to what you’re grateful for — it’s the best way to get more of what you really want. Until next time, do it for your well being and those you love.

Yours truly,

PLEASE NOTE: The information shared in this e-news is designed to help you make informed decisions about speakers and the programs they offer. It is not intended as a substitute for any treatment prescribed by a doctor. If you suspect you have a medical problem, seek competent medical help.

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The Speak Well Being Group specializes in exceptional speakers for women’s health and wellness, community and healthcare-oriented special events, including cancer survivor, breast health awareness, heart health and nurses appreciation programs. Our goal is to make it effortless to connect clients with the talent and expertise that will make speaker selection easy and ensure a successful event. We’ve been co-creating health and wellness through connections since 1998.

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