Gratitude for day-to-day abstinence

As my workout shirt says “Pray Train Conquer Repeat.” I have to start with prayer because I can only do it through God’s grace. I did my daily normal strength training and aerobics but added a more intense step aerobics by going old school with the Reebok Step video I found on YouTube! That was WORK! But I loved it! It’s a journey one day at a time. And I’m grateful for God’s love and mercy no matter how many times I’ve fallen to help me rise up and keep going on this journey. And I’m grateful for the day-to-day and minute-by-minute God-given gift of abstinence from trigger foods where we don’t have to feel overwhelmed about whether or not we’ll fail tomorrow but instead pray, plan to succeed in the moment, and accept God’s gift.


Me in my small home gym before my workout Saturday
Reebok Steps video
Me about 9 years ago

“Fear is not sustainable. Joy and pleasure are.” Dr. Dean Ornish

Many of us begin this lifestyle change because of fear of a current or future illness that was limiting or would limit our time with our families and friends. But fear really is Not sustainable as Dr. Ornish says. That’s why we have to get to the root of our eating issues and as Dr. Rhona Epstein says find and abstain from our food triggers (no matter if it’s technically “compliant” but we Know it doesn’t work for us); get help and support for lasting change; AND stick to our unique plans and honestly tweak as needed EVEN WHEN we are not losing weight in the way we expect to. Make a commitment to stick with it and give your body time to heal from the effects of food addiction and/or to undo the damage. And Speaking of undoing, Dr. Ornish and his wife Anne wrote a wonderful book called “Undo It!” worth reading. It emphasizes the four lifestyle changes one must make to reverse most chronic diseases—eat well, move more, stress less, and love more (be involved with family, friends/community).


On Releasing Food Triggers Not Just To Lose Excess Weight But To Gain Greater Sanity and Peace With Food And Life

On Releasing Food Triggers Not Just To Lose Excess Weight But To Gain Greater Sanity and Peace With Food And Life

There are many WFPB success stories and I love to read/listen to/watch them and be more inspired and hopefully learn from them too. Believe me, none of us who have lost a substantial amount of weight are perfect. And it’s not about being perfect. My belief is that God is perfect and that “I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.” (Phil 4:13). That’s my belief and that’s why I always say I’m Plant Based by God’s Grace. Most (maybe not all but most) of us are food addicts. If we’ve read The Pleasure Trap, or The End of Overeating, we can’t deny it and if we do deny it, we’re only lying to ourselves. Even those of us who have lost a substantial amount of weight still have a battle.

But this is what I have found has made the battle SO much lighter and easier One Day At a Time: letting go of my trigger foods. Period. Reading Dr. Rhona Epstein’s Food Triggers and continually praying and following through has helped me tremendously. I don’t care if peanut butter or whole grain flour or Ezekiel bread is so-called “compliant” if it doesn’t work for ME. I know MY body. We all know our bodies. If all the rules I set around it don’t work and I still overeat on it consistently, then it is a trigger food, and I’ll go as far as to say an idol food for me personally, and one that I have to let go. And if the thought of letting it go makes me panic even more, then that’s a sign that I AM truly addicted to it.

Letting go of my final stronghold of “compliant” trigger food late this summer (PB I let go of many months ago but others I held on to), is one of the BEST things I’ve ever done!! And believe it or not, it’s not just the extra fat that is slowly coming off (while that feels good too), it’s the peace and relief from the constant mental battle that is priceless and oh so worth it!! PLEASE read the literature on food addiction to understand the chemical issues affecting the brain and how to overcome it.

Be at peace with food if you already aren’t. Be free to eat for health and concentrate on other things in life and thrive and not even have to stress over or overthink food at all. Seek counseling if you need to deal with past trauma; let go of toxic shame that doesn’t belong to you; and seek counseling around your addictions (food And including other substances/behaviors). It is SO worth it. YOU are so worth it!!


{ Check out this Idea List on Amazon: Food Addiction or Food Issues Must-Have/Must-Read List by N.B. }

FYI, I’m not making one cent off of any of these recommendations. They are just books that have helped me and many others.

New Workouts—Fueled by Plants and Grace

It’s been a busy time preparing for school/work and starting but thankfully I’ve been keeping up with my workouts. I LOVE step aerobics and took classes many years ago so I’m back to doing it again but solo in my home gym. Today I tried my newest workout DVD. It’s a high intensity walk (with other aerobic movement) video by Jessica Smith. Those familiar with fitness expert Jessica Smith know she will Make you work 😆 and you won’t be disappointed. I highly recommend this DVD. Then I did some strength training, adding in squats and a segment of the butt lift video to support my lower back. And later, I took two walking breaks outdoors while waiting for my car to be repaired.

Fueled by clean, nutrient-rich, whole plant foods 🌱 🥗 🍠 🥕 🥦 🍌


Spiritual Breakthrough for Food Addiction

Spiritual Breakthrough for Food Addiction

Last night I watched the story of Paul Mason who at one point was dubbed “Britain’s fattest man.” My heart went out to him. He weighed well over 700 pounds and was housebound as well as bedridden. He lost his family home, family, friends, and his dignity but still couldn’t stop binging and eating junk foods. He looked at past pictures when he was at a regular weight and cried about how he should have reached out for help when stress, anxiety, and sadness were leading him down this path. But he didn’t until it was almost too late, cost him years of living his best life, and almost cost him his life completely. There by the grace of God go I and you.

Many of us know WHAT to eat, WHEN we should eat (Not constant snacking even if healthy and on our food plan/way of eating, but regular meals instead), and WHY we should eat (nourishment and hunger), but still struggle. You can be thin (it’s not all about weight) and still be addicted to some sort of “comfort” food, even if it’s potatoes or bananas. Yes, that’s healthier then the highly processed foods being advertised as comfort food but especially when we find that we still can’t reach our health, wellness, and/or weight loss goals or even if we do reach them and Still thinking of food too much and letting it become an idol, it’s time to humble ourselves, go to God in prayer, seek counseling for trauma and even daily anxieties, reach out to someone for support Before reaching for food for comfort (thanks to technology there are support groups online and messenger systems to find a few friends when needed to talk to), and stay the course or recommit when we need too. I love Dr. Rhona Epstein’s books, especially Food Triggers, because she addresses the spiritual aspects and breakthroughs from food addiction that can finally set us free. We are worth it. Our bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit. They deserve better. See Dr. Rhona’s book as well as this short video for a summary.


What are you willing to give up?

What are you willing to give up?

“Before you heal someone, ask him if he’s willing to give up the things that made him sick.”


What are you willing to give up to reclaim your health—not just lose weight, but Reclaim your Health? Does that question make your heart jump? Are you afraid to give up whatever processed food or food-like substances that hold you in their grip?

What if the question were reframed a new way? Are you willing to give up chronic pain? Are you willing to give up high blood pressure? Are you willing to give up pre-diabetes? Are you willing to to give up GERD/Acid Reflux? Are you willing to give up a family legacy of obesity, extreme pain and suffering from chronic, diet and lifestyle related illnesses? And are you willing to give up fear and take a leap of faith that this lifestyle will help to heal you? My husband and I gave up all of that, by God’s grace.

You have so much more to gain after giving up the causes of illness.


Normal Eater, Emotional Eater, or Food Addict? Which type are You?

Three Types of Eaters

Normal Eater, Emotional Eater, or Food Addict? Which are you?

See the article below, including the chart with similarities and differences. You cannot successfully tackle your weight and health issues until you are brutally honest with yourself and then know that you DO have the power to make a positive change with the right mindset, resources, and by God’s grace. Knowing this and understanding why some can just adopt a WFPB diet and be successful right away and long term and why others struggle and yo-yo UNTIL they understand and deal with emotional and addictive eating and abstain from trigger foods (sugar, oil, salt, alcohol if you’re still drinking, flours—even whole grain flours for many, etc.) is the key to success. Don’t let fear of “giving up” certain foods keep you from ACHIEVING health, wellness, and fitness.

Slow Jogging/Running

Slow jogging/running

Some people do it to built up stamina, reduce injury, to slowly build up speed, and improve form. I’m not ashamed to say that I’m a slow runner and I LOVE it. For me it allows me to be meditative, prayerful, and reflective while I move and burn fat without aggravating my old lower lumber herniated disk and hip injury. It’s at a walking pace. So YOU can run too!

Abstaining from Addictive Foods During Holidays



Holidays come and holidays go. Our choice remains the same: to abstain or to overeat.

Most holidays are associated with an overabundance of special food. Those who are not compulsive overeaters may be able to indulge for a day. We cannot. For us, one day’s indulgence is usually the start of a downward skid into loss of control and the despair which follows. What kind of a celebration is it if we end up back in the trap of compulsive overeating?

Every day we may celebrate our freedom by abstaining. When holidays come, we enjoy them more by abstaining than we ever did by indulging. We are free from guilt and remorse and the terrible panic that seizes us when we lose control. We are free to think about the deeper significance of the holiday. Whatever the celebration, it is more than a reason to eat and drink.

When abstinence remains the most important part of our life, no matter what day it is, then every day is a celebration and holidays are blessings instead o disasters.

Lord, may I celebrate this day and every day by abstaining.”

From Food For Thought: Daily Meditation for Overeaters

Food Addiction

Food Addiction??

“Almost everyone you know is a sugar addict.”

Dr. Joel Fuhrman, author of Eat To Live

The quote above is true in great part because most of us have been exposed to processed, heavily chemical-laden food-like substances from an early age. Do you know that many “food” companies hire chemists to find the right combination of chemicals to induce a euphoric taste and texture when their products hit our tongues? Do we really want to be so manipulated at the expense of our own health?

Certified food addiction specialist Dr. Rhona Epstein explains how in her book Food Triggers. If you have a food problem or are outright a food addict, don’t be ashamed. Take a stand against this manipulation of the food substance industry and vow to reclaim your health! Get Dr. Rhona’s book because food issues start in the brain and that has to be addressed ASAP. Don’t be afraid of giving up sugar. It will save your life and trust me fruits and fruit sweetened desserts are delicious (ask any of my dinner guests :)).

Also, get the books that will give you a healthy, non-addictive food plan (and recipes if you need them)—Dr. Joel Fuhrman, Dr. Dean Ornish (Undo It), Dr. John McDougall, Dr. Neal Barnard, Dr. Baxter Montgomery, Chef AJ, Cathy Fischer, and the list goes on with great whole food plant based (WFPB) experts. We don’t have to suffer needlessly from type two diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity, and all the lifestyle diseases plaguing our communities. Also, consider watching the “Eating” documentary by Mike Anderson (free on YouTube) and “Forks Over Knives” on Netflix.

“The Chemistry of Triggering

Does it sound outlandish that you could be addicted to food, something we’re made to need for survival? It shouldn’t. Food addicts and drug and alcohol addicts have so much in common: loss of control; cravings; denial of the extent of problems; preoccupation; the use of food or substances to cope with stress; secretiveness; negative effects in relationships; and social, psychological, and occupational consequences. Food addicts and drug and alcohol addicts share something else too—the same kind of brain chemistry: 1…..


Science is confirming that. Professor Bart Hoebel and his colleagues at Princeton University’s Neuroscience Institute found sugar does have long-lasting effects in the brain of a sugar addict just as alcohol has in the brain of an alcoholic and drugs in the brain of a drug addict.”

Food Triggers: End Your Cravings, Eat Well, Live Better

By Dr. Rhona Epstein, Psy.D,

Certified Food Addiction Specialist