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IN THIS ISSUE                                                                                   November 1, 2006

  • To Eat or Not Eat Breakfast
    That is The Question

  • Tips For a Stress Free Holiday Season

  • Some Great Prizes Ready for Your Bid
    for the Fun and Fitness Fair Fundraiser

  • The Recipe Corner ... More Tasty Recipes


To Eat or Not Eat Breakfast
That is The Question

Much like the great "should you drink water" debate, there is also the "should you eat breakfast" debate. Recently in an article appearing on suggesting that eating breakfast was neither essential for good health nor did it improve brain function. Given the way the human body responds to eating and the demand from the brain for a constant source of fuel, namely glucose, there several compelling reasons why taking the time for breakfast is good for your health, head and waistline.

First, the healthy choice is to eat breakfast, so to make that choice easier let's look at some body metabolism basics. Promoting an active metabolism, keeping hunger in check and maintaining stable blood sugar levels means feeding your body optimally about every 4 hours. Past 6 and certainly 8 hours, your body starts a metabolic shutdown due to a lack of food. Low blood sugar levels signal the metabolic centers in the brain to slow down your body processes and conserve energy. The longer your body goes without food, the slower your metabolism gets. So if you eat dinner at 6pm and don't eat again until 12 noon the next day, you are a full 18 hours past the beneficial eating cycle.

Second, if eating breakfast makes sense to you from both a metabolic and health standpoint; let's look at what constitutes healthy breakfast food choices. When it comes to sugar and insulin levels in the body, the breakfast meal sets the tone for the rest of your day. A well balanced, low glycemic (food converts to sugar slowly) breakfast energizes your body and helps your brain stay sharp. A poorly balanced, high glycemic (food converts to sugar quickly) breakfast puts blood sugar and insulin levels in a hormonal tailspin. The rest of your day is spent playing catch-up trying to balance sugar, insulin and hunger levels.

Eating a high glycemic breakfast (lots of simple carbohydrates) is probably worse than eating no breakfast at all. A good example of a high glycemic breakfast would be dry cereal with milk and a piece of fruit. Although the milk provides some protein and fat, this breakfast is going to quickly and significantly raise your blood sugar. Just as quickly, about 2 hours later, blood glucose levels will crash and you'll feel hungry, maybe even light headed and tired. On the other hand, if you had chosen an egg, ½ piece of toast with butter and a ½ piece of fruit with a little cottage cheese or yogurt; you would feel energized, clear headed and satisfied 4 hours later. Choosing the right type of food for the first meal of the day really makes a difference in how you feel and perform.

Finally, if you decide to skip breakfast the last challenge is overeating. Overeating is the most significant physical problem faced by overweight individuals. It's at the root of obesity and becomes more of a problem when you don't eat a regular breakfast. The act of overeating is both a physical as well as a mental over reaction to self-imposed food deprivation. Don't under estimate the importance of how you feel emotionally about breakfast or eating in general. Anytime something is withheld, there is a strong psychological questioning of "Why can't I have that?" Children are a good example of this. When they are told "no" to a specific action, their immediate reaction is stronger towards wanting it. With breakfast, not eating for 18 hours has a strong, negative psychological effect. Unconsciously you'll question "when is my next meal?" Healthy eating patterns reinforce abundance and not lack and avoid feelings of self-deprivation for food.

My advice, s
tick to a healthy breakfast and spare yourself the mental and physical stress on your health that goes along with skipping the most important meal of the day.

Deciding to live a healthy lifestyle is a life-long commitment you make everyday. Because of the many health and aging benefits that come from adopting a healthier way of living, taking care of yourself is time well spent. See how well your lifestyle compares and take my free
Health Investment Questionnaire. It's a great way to evaluate your current lifestyle and see what areas need a tune up.
Go to and click on
Health Investment Questionnaire at the bottom of the page. Good Luck!


Tips For a Stress Free Holiday Season

For most people, the upcoming holiday season is one of the most stressful times of the year. The parties, shopping, crowds, extra traffic and with most people already spread thin and over committed; the holiday season just accentuates the lack of free time and the need to satisfy multiple needs. Feeling "stressed out" takes all the enjoyment out of what is supposed to be a happy and healthy time of the year. So here are a few suggestions that can help you maintain control and make your holiday season a joyful one.

Step 1 Don't Bite Off More Than You Can Chew

Sometimes you just have to say "no" if your schedule is full and you want to try and maintain your sanity. The holiday season is not about pleasing other people, it's about enjoying yourself. Learning to politely say "no" is a life saver during the holiday season. Be a realist and tell yourself that it's better to schedule four activities and enjoy them than over- schedule six and enjoy nothing. Yes, you may have to skip a party or two but that's OK, there will be more next year.

Step 2 Be a Buddhist

What does it mean to be a Buddhist during the holiday season? No, it's not about saffron robes; being a Buddhist means enjoying the holiday journey. Focusing on the task at hand and enjoy it to the fullest is to enjoy the journey. If you can't find any enjoyment in what you're doing, you probably shouldn't be doing it anyway. Attempting one activity while thinking about ten others just destroys the possibility of getting enjoyment out of anything you are doing.

Step 3 Make Time for Yourself

No matter what you think, you'll need to make time for yourself during the holiday season. Just like any other time of year, saying you don't have time just won't keep you stress free. When you eliminate personal time because you feel "pinched," your stress levels immediately begin to rise. This in turn adds to the misery and degrades your health in the long run. You're going to need to enlist the help of healthy supports so call on your spouse, friends and family. Right now you need supporters not saboteurs to make this holiday season happy and healthy.

To learn how to incorporate Fresh Start stress reduction strategies before this holiday season, please contact Woody McMahon at 703-628-2880 or email

Some Great Prizes Ready for Your Bid
for the Fun and Fitness Fair Fundraiser

The silent auction prizes are up on the Sequoia website. This is your last chance to bid on some nice gifts and help raise money for osteoporosis education and research. Let the bidding begin!!!

Please enter your name, email and bid amount and I will keep you updated as to where you stand. All bidding will close Friday November 10th at 5:30pm.
If you are interested in making a bid, please go to to view and bid on the prize list or contact Woody McMahon at 703-628-2880 or email to learn more about bidding and donations.

Thanks again for your support.

Another tasty recipe from the healthy cooking archives.

Continued Good Health,


Woody McMahon

The Sequoia Advisor

Sequoia Health and Fitness, Inc.
483A Carlisle Dive
Herndon , VA 20170  

Required Disclaimer: The info rmation provided herein should not be construed as a health-care diagnosis,
treatment regimen or any other prescribed health-care advice or instruction. The info rmation is provided with the understanding that the publisher is not engaged in the practice of medicine or any other health-care profession and does not enter into a health-care practitioner/patient relationship with its readers. The publisher does not advise or recommend to its readers treatment or action with regard to matters relating to their health or well-being other than suggesting that readers consult appropriate health-care professionals in such matters. No action should be taken based solely on the content of this publication. The info rmation and opinions provided herein are believed to be accurate and sound at the time of publication, based on the best judgment available to the authors. However, readers who rely on info rmation in this publication to replace the advice of health-care professionals, or who fail to consult with health-care professionals, assume all risks of such conduct. The publisher is not responsible for errors or omissions. 

Copyright (c) 2006 by Sequoia Health and Fitness, Inc.

About this Newsletter 

For info rmation about Sequoia Health and Fitness, Inc.
please contact Woody McMahon :
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    A mindful and holistic approach to Fall Prevention, Balance, Full Body Functional Strengthening and Posture Exercises for All Ages! Our Science-Based Exercises are Safe and Appropriate for Your Ability. Our Exercises Help Improve Osteoporosis, Osteopenia, Fear of Falling, Balance and Strength Problems. Reston, Great Falls, Herndon, Middleburg, Arlington Sterling and Northern Virginia.

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