Life-Changing with LV: One Couples’ Journey to Lose Weight Together

Couple Getting Healthy TogetherLaura Meier, 52, on a health journey with her husband, Brice

Goal(s): Lose a combined total of 150 lbs

Six months ago, Laura Meier joined LifeVest, and set out with her husband Brice on a mission to lose weight. They planned a trip to the Caribbean as motivation, and began making significant changes that would move them towards their goals. Each now two clothing sizes smaller and two energy levels higher, the two set sail this week and are ready to celebrate.

“We’re looking forward to enjoying [the trip] together and being motivated to continue on,” says Laura who’s over halfway to her goal of losing 50 pounds. Brice has exceeded the halfway point towards his goal, too, down 65 pounds and on his way to 100.

Laura was initially motivated by the opportunity to earn money through LifeVest. However, this quickly became merely an added benefit of the experience. She earned a FitBit early into her program and soon after bought Brice one too, and it was at this point that Laura decided to make her LifeVest journey one that would last for life. Together, the couple began powering up their step count, and benefiting from the results.

“Brice has problems with sciatic nerves and back pain, and he used to hardly be able to make it to the corner with me,” says Laura. “Now, he’s sometimes walking 40,000 steps per day because he’s feeling so much better by getting the weight off and getting active.”

Through the weight loss, Brice has been able to relieve some of the pressure from his knees and back, and Laura says she feels better about herself than ever before. They’ve decided they won’t be stopping once they reach their weight loss goal, but instead continuing to find new ways they can lead a healthier life together. Laura shares some advice on what’s worked for them so far, and how her and Brice are make the changes together.

Read the rest of this entry »


LifeVester Recipe: Basil Tomato “Pasta” with Chicken

Recipe: Basil Tomato "Pasta" with Chicken

The following easy-to-make recipe comes from LifeVester Angela Delgado, and offers a much lighter alternative to your traditional plate of pasta. Since Angela discovered zucchini could be turned into noodles a few months ago, she’s been making it every single week!

“It tricks me into thinking I’m eating pasta, which I’ve always been addicted to,” she says. “It’s really quick and has simple flavors that all come together to create a really fresh dish.”

With less than half the calories of regular pasta, and a whole lot of vitamin C and other nutrients, this is one pasta where building a healthy addiction would be well-warranted! Serve it up as a light meal or alongside a slice of whole grain bread and a salad.

Click here for recipe…


Life-Changing with LifeVest: One Woman’s Mission to Lose 100 Pounds


Rene WortheyRene Worthey
, 49 years old, single mother of two

Her goal: To lose 100 pounds by her 50th birthday next year

Four years ago, Rene Worthey experienced a wake-up call. Her mother, who had suffered from heart disease and obesity, passed away, which left Rene thinking about her own health, especially in relation to her two children.

“Those last few months with my mom, they were very difficult,” she says. “I didn’t want to put my kids through that. There were a lot of things that I had to do for my mom that no mother wants their kid to have to do for them.”

At the time, Rene was dealing with weight issues of her own as she slowly watched the scale go up and her energy go down. Rene contributes much of this to her diet, which prior to LifeVest, Rene says was 90% composed of meals from fast food restaurants. Like many busy individuals, she loathed cooking and so she let her stove sit idle and placed her health on its back burner.

“It’s very easy, quick and cheap to get stuff you don’t need, and because of that you really have to plan ahead,” says Rene, who now prepares most of her meals at home. Down 30 pounds in just eight months, she’s on a mission to turn her health around, and with it, she’s turning her life around, too.

Since starting the LifeVest program, Rene set out with a goal to lose 100 pounds, and is driven to hit that target by her 50th birthday next year. She plans to celebrate with what became a challenging activity in recent years, amusement park rides, and says with a smile, “My hope is that when I hit 50, there’s going to be a whole new me. I’m really looking forward to being a super fine, good-looking, healthy 50-year-old.”

With her positive attitude and healthy enthusiasm for spinach, here at LifeVest, we have no doubt she’ll be able to achieve that goal. Read the rest of this entry »


Meatless Monday: Kale and Strawberry Salad Over Lemony Bulgur

meatless-monday

Here at LifeVest, we encourage participation in Meatless Mondays, and we’ll be fueling up your inspiration today with a seasonal, strawberry-inspired recipe.

But first, what exactly is Meatless Monday? By now, many of you may be familiar with the term, and if not, likely you can surmise its meaning from the two words that constitute it. In any case, let’s hash out the name a bit further.

Meatless Monday is a global campaign that began in 2003 in association with the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. It encourages people to refrain from eating meat one day per week, and was launched to bring awareness to the health benefits this can bring. One of the primary driving factors is lowering saturated fat intake.

As a general rule, it’s a good idea to keep your intake of saturated fats as low as possible. According to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, this means consuming less than 10% of your daily calories as saturated fat, since diets with high levels are closely linked to chronic disease, specifically, coronary heart disease.

In the American diet, red meat is among the main sources of saturated fat in our diets, so doing without it one day per week is likely to benefit your health. If you think that sounds tough, don’t sweat it. The movement is active in 34 different countries, so there are tons of ideas out there to last for Mondays of endless years to come. Check out the official Meatless Monday pinterest for breakfast, lunch and dinner, tofu night, taco night and more.

Kale and Strawberry Salad

We also have our own fellow LifeVester, Grace, from over at FoodFitnessFreshAir serving up this recipe to get you started today. Grace says: “A little salty (thank you feta), a little sweet (cheers to local strawberry season), and a little earthy (thank you almighty kale), this salad hits every note in all the right ways. Plate it up over cooked bulgur to make it a meal, or send it off to a picnic and become the star of the party.  It won’t let you down.” 

Head on over for the recipe, and join us today for a meat-free Monday!

 


3 Recipes to Drink Light This Memorial Day Weekend

Light Blueberry Cocktail

Memorial Day marks the (un)official start of summer. Hooray for the onset of BBQ season, picnicked Saturday lunches, sandwiches on the sand, and farmers’ market Sundays! ‘Tis the season for outdoor dining and drinking.

With that in mind, it’s important to be mindful of not letting your diet go to the bayside. Instead, we want to see you make smart choices to get your body ready for the beach! Let’s kick off the season with a focus to keep mealtimes light this weekend by loading up on the first seasonal items of summer.

Hit up your local farmers’ market so you can party down on a basket full of produce. Whether it means making a road trip for a mini Memorial Day weekend adventure, grilling in your own backyard, or heading to the park, fruits and vegetables make for the most refreshing summertime snacks and sides. In honor of the warmer temps, as you utilize the season’s bounty to lighten up your meals, we’re bringing you some recipes so you can do the same with your drinks!

Below, find three simple summertime favorites, including classics like iced tea spruced up with a sophisticated twist of lavender and Earl Grey, and a fun, antioxidant-laced blueberry cocktail. Light and iced, you’ll find these are refreshing to the last drop.

Click here for recipes…


What We’re Reading – First edition

Brain Food

Twice per month, we’ll be bringing you the LifeVest edition of what we’re reading to fuel your brain, boost your motivation, and provide you with education aimed towards your health. You’ll find articles on everything from diet to fitness to well-being, along with a few fun reads thrown in there with a focus on health.

Brain food for health: A snippet of what we’re reading from around the web.

  • Pedal pollution out of the air, one bicycle trip at a time. That’s the theory behind Matt Hope’s latest invention, a bike designed to filter and clean the air as he rides around Beijing, China.  The bike needs some tweaking before it’d ever take off in the commercial market. However, if and when it does, sign us up for a spin please. Read more here.
  • Cricket bars, the new Clif Bars? Outside Magazine discusses what may be the next paleo nutrition craze – insect energy bars. A new food company is whipping up bars with flavors like PB&J, Cashew-Ginger, and Cacao Nut, that all pack in 10 grams of protein per bar. Their secret ingredient? Cricket flour.
  • What we’re making – Magenta Crusted Asparagus PIZZA. When spring comes into full bloom, so does asparagus. Lucky for us, once the green stalks take off, there’s no stopping them.  In warm, mid-season weather, asparagus can grow as quickly as 1 cm per hour – which means there’ll be plenty at your local farmer’s market to make this gorgeous pink pizza. Click here for the recipe.
  • 5 things you didn’t know about caffeine. Get the low down on caffeine from Refinery29 – how it works, how much will kill you, and other interesting facts. For example, the amount of caffeine in a Starbucks “grande” coffee is equivalent to seven cans of Red Bull.
  • Good morning sunshine. Women’s Health mag brings us the one rise and shine tip for losing weight that doesn’t involve food or exercise.
  • Want to improve your health? There’s an app for that. Okay, so your phone can’t do everything for you. Whether it’s your diet, your fitness routine, or your sleep schedule, you’ll need to put in some personal power to boost your health, but these 7 apps recommended by the Greatist team are here to lend you a hand.

Music’s Affect on Health

Music for health

By Trish Ryan, founder of Time for Dinnera service to help you simplify the meal planning process and enjoy healthy meals with your family.

When it comes to your health, music hits the right note.

Music can instantly help calm you. After a long, stressful day, hit the play button and you may immediately start to feel some tension release in your body.

It’s a personal tool. You choose the music that makes you feel good. Only you can know what type will positively affect your mood and benefit your body best.  It has been proven, however, that even small notes like chirping from birds and the sound rushing from waterfalls can help you unwind.

But how?

  • Research proves that music with a strong beat can stimulate brainwaves to resonate in sync with the beat. With faster beats bringing sharper concentration and more alert thinking, while a slower tempo promotes a calm, meditative state.
  • When music affects the brains waves, it also changes body functions. It causes slower breathing, slower heart rate and an activation of the relaxation response.
  • Music has also shown to increase creativity and optimism levels, which can help keep depression and anxiety at bay.
  • Varies studies have shown, in part from all of the reasons above, music can lower blood pressure, reduce the risk of stroke and heart problems, boost immunity and eases muscle tension.

The takeaway? It’s time to power on the tunes.  Consider:

When exercising: Listen to your favorite music when working out and you’ll get double the benefits. Choose an up-tempo playlist, which is more likely to power you through a tough stretch on the treadmill or an upcoming hill and help you burn extra calories.

At the Office: Choose something more mellow when hammering away at your desk. Research shows that this can help to increase focus and concentration, thus increasing productivity.

While Cooking: Cooking in itself can be a de-stressing activity. The rhythmic chopping of onions and garlic can help the anxiety fade away.  But on days when you find yourself too tired to cook, music can come to your rescue. Try putting on your favorite track and notice how it can transform cooking into an enjoyable, re-energizing activity. This will elevate your mood and, in turn, help you enjoy the evening with your family.

Preparing healthy meals for your family is important, as it may be the one time a day when you can all sit down and share time together. A meal planning service like Time for Dinner can help make preparing healthy and delicious meals easier for your family.

Time for Dinner members are provided recipes for five simple, healthy meals including side dishes each week. Meal plans are created to be efficient and eliminate waste. Ingredients are maximized to create balanced dinners that play off each other. Members are also provided with an organized shopping list, cost estimates to help keep you on budget, a list of pantry items you will need, and guides to meal preparation. Time for Dinner is a great tool to help you avoid pitfalls and stay on track with healthy eating.

As a LifeVest Health reader, enjoy a special rate ($14 off an annual membership). To join visit: http://timefordinnerplanning.com/get-started/annual-offer/.