To Help Change Enemies Into Friends

TO HELP CHANGE ENEMIES INTO FRIENDS

Take a photograph of your enemy and pass it through the rising smoke of jasmine, orange, vanilla or violet incense. As you do this, recite the following incantation 3 times.

 

Enemy, enemy, turn into friend
Let all ill will, now come to an end.

 

If you do not have photograph of your enemy, you can use a square piece of blue parchment paper upon which you have written his or her full name and birth date, if known. After reciting the incantation for the third time, take the photograph or blue parchment and put it in a small box along with a beryl gemstone. Fill the box with vervain, cover it with a lid, and then store it in an undisturbed place. For best results, perform this spell when you moon is full.

When Is It Time To Make A Change?

When Is It Time To Make A Change?

by Christy Diane Farr

 

Several years ago, I ended a very rocky off again/on again relationship. I  quit eating meat. A couple of years later, my daughter decided she didn’t want  to eat meat anymore either. My wife, who never ate much meat anyway, followed  suit too.

My charming son, who previously preferred potatoes and pasta to animal  protein, no questions asked, has now declared himself the resident carnivore –  the proud and mighty meat eating man of the house. I suspect the renewed  commitment to meat consumption reflects his quest to define himself, the lone  male, in a household with three girl people, three girl cats, and one neutered  boy cat, who he tells me “does not count for the boy team, because we had him  fixed”. So, testosterone driven or not, we support him in his life as a  meat eater, and he supports us in ours.

Several months ago, I gave up crack, I mean sugar… again. After more than two  years without the poison, I’d “relapsed” and felt sincerely mortified to find  myself deep in the throes of a toxic relationship with it once again. That is  always a good sign that you should stop eating something, when you realize that  you not only have a “relationship” with a food, but that you describe it as  toxic. Never a good sign, but if there is uncertainty, look for other  signs you need to give it up. For example, how often have you had a hysterical  fit of crying and screaming because someone used the last of the milk, without  warning you or replacing it, leaving you with a dry bowl of Fruity Pebbles? If  the answer is more than zero, you might want to give it some thought…

While I have no energy for the debate about whether one can be “addicted” to  sugar or not, my relatively recently established policy prohibiting “toxic  relationships” forced me to put down the spoon and walk away from sugar for  good. Yes, I miss cake but there really isn’t anything that tastes better than  sanity feels. I’ve resisted forcing my dietary choices on my family and friends,  perhaps excessively so, and the living by example thing works slower than I ever  imagined. It’s just me, living sugar-free, and while it is a difficult choice at  times, I live with certainty that it is best for me (and everyone who encounters  me).

Do you know the feeling that comes to let you know it is time to make a  change? It is a message that bubbles up from deep within, or sometimes the  universal brick to the forehead,  that the time to act is now. Sometimes they  are strong enough that by simply receiving it, we feel the strength and  certainty to move into alignment with it. These are powerful moments and I’ve  found that by taking action when the time is right, I have what it takes to  actually do it.

Well, not long after I released sugar,  I heard that the time had  come to make two other big dietary adjustments – releasing dairy and gluten.  I’ve done these two before, just long enough to know that my body wasn’t  responding well to them. I knew it would come eventually, but when word came  that it was time, I freaked out.

Immediately, the voice in my head started explaining how hard it is to give  up wheat, to give up dairy, to give them up in addition to sugar, to give them  up when I don’t eat meat. It told me that this was absolutely unreasonable. It  told me how this would be better to do later.

The good news is that I am impressively tenacious.

(“Tenacious” is the post-therapy translation of childhood labels like  bull-headed, stubborn, cantankerous, unmanageable, and just plain bitchy.)

I won’t listen to anyone, even  the little voices in my head, when I can  discern they are coming from a place of fear. Part of me felt afraid that these  changes would be too hard. Part of me certainly — and perhaps even reasonably —  felt afraid that I wouldn’t know what to eat or how to prepare my food. I was  afraid because I sincerely wanted to make these changes and that meant it  would  hurt so badly if I failed.

But all of that is about fear and we already know that nothing of value ever  comes from fear.

So, here’s the deal: I am a catalyst. I write and teach because these are the  gifts I possess to help me blow up obstacles to personal freedom — both in my  life and in yours — because that’s what I believe I was created to do. With that  in mind, what  I’m trying to tell you is this: Once you hear the whispers (or  feel bricks) about making changes in your life, the time to take action is now.  Period.

When you feel the energy surge, that’s your sign, jump on and ride it all the  way. Do whatever it takes to cultivate the health, sanity, creativity,  abundance, love, or whatever else you need and desire. That’s how this works.  And when you commit, the universe will rush in to support you. You’ll receive  the your life equivalent of friends who are masterful vegan cooks to  teach you how prepare what you eat now, Kundalini Yoga classes to help you heal,  and too-tight favorite blue jeans to remind you why you care about making this  change.

While I could write, at remarkable length, about the merits of sugar-free  food, being a vegetarian or vegan, food sensitivities, respecting an 11 year-old  boy’s need to carve a space for himself in the world by eating meat, and the  healing power of self-love, that is not what I want you to hear in this story  about what’s changing in my world.

Instead, I’m writing to ask you — plain and simple — to listen when your  intuition speaks to you. Regardless of what healing journey writers like me are  sharing with you, or what your partner/boss/mother/society believes you “should”  be, I’m asking you to find your own answers. What does your body need you to do?  What does your soul long for? What are the personal and professional dreams  waiting for your attention?

Listen to the beautiful voice inside your heart; the tender one who whispers  about your strength and your power; the one who knows, intimately, all the best  parts of you and who remembers the reason for your life on this earth. When that  voice says it is time, listen… act. Your life is waiting for you.

 

8 alarmingly unhealthy snacks to avoid

A muffin with the same amont of calories as 10 chocolate donuts? A pretzel with more saturated fat than a Big Mac? Read this and weep.

In a perfect world, everyone (kids included) would snack on carrots and

kale chips. For those who do, hats off. But for everyone else, once you step away from the produce aisle, the choice of snacks can run the gamut from nutritionally vapid to downright deleterious. And sadly, consumers are often at the mercy of the processed food industry with its seductive yet unhealthy ingredients and powerful marketing machines. It’s all too easy to be swayed by items marketed specifically to children and parents — with enticing prices, misleading labels and the promise of convenience.

But when consumers start to dig a bit, they’ll get a better picture of what’s going on inside the snacks they devour. Following is a snapshot of some of the worst offenders. The list is by no means exhaustive, but these examples provide some clues about what to look out for in the snack aisle.

1. Pop-Secret Homestyle Popcorn

 

Popcorn should be a great snack. It is a whole grain, naturally low in calories, and recent research has found that popped kernels are surprisingly high in antioxidants, even higher than many fruits and vegetables. So where did this super-snack go super-wrong? In the hands of food manufacturers, that’s where. How does this version compare to an order of McDonald’s Kids Fries? A serving of Pop-Secret has 70 more calories, 7 grams more total fat, 2 grams more saturated fat, 4.5 grams more trans fat, and 310 milligrams more sodium than the fried spuds.

Serving size: 2 tablespoons unpopped
Calories: 170
Total fat: 12 grams
Saturated fat: 2.5 grams
Trans fat: 4.5 grams
Sodium: 380 milligrams

2. Cheetos Puffs

 

Nobody ever said that oddly textured cheese snacks were exactly healthy, but something about the non-greasiness and airy quality of Cheetos Puffs (vibrant hue aside) seems like this product might more benign than, let’s say, super salty fried potato chips. But … look at that total fat! That sodium! That’s half the daily fat and sodium limit for many children, right there in 2 ounces of snack.

Serving size: 2 ounces (56 grams)
Calories: 320
Total fat: 20 grams
Saturated fat: 4 grams
Sodium: 700 milligrams

3. Yoplait Original 99% Fat Free (various fruit flavors)

 

Yogurt is another should-be healthy snack that has been hijacked by the food industry. Many yogurts are made to be low- or non-fat but are loaded with added sugar and other ingredients that are completely superfluous.

Whereas a product like Fage 0% is made of only “Grade A Pasteurized Skimmed Milk, and Live Active Yogurt Cultures,” Yoplait Original includes sugar, modified corn starch, high fructose corn syrup, kosher gelatin, and tricalcium phosphate — yet no live and active cultures, which is one of the main reasons to be eating yogurt in the first place!

Serving Size: 1 container (170 grams)
Calories: 170
Total fat: 1.5 grams
Saturated fat: 1 gram
Sodium: 85 milligrams
Sugars: 26 grams

4. Ritz Bits Cracker Sandwiches

 

Cheese and crackers sounds innocuous enough, but a single serving of these guys has more sodium and more than twice the saturated fat, as a small order of Chicken McNuggets — and more sugar than two Hershey’s Kisses.

Serving size: 1 single serve package (42 grams)
Calories: 220
Total fat: 13 grams
Saturated fat 4.5 grams
Sodium: 480 milligrams
Sugars: 6 grams

5. Auntie Anne’s Pepperoni Pretzel Pocket

Whole-wheat low-sodium pretzels are a good snack. Pepperoni Pretzel Pockets are a disaster. With more sodium, saturated fat and calories than a Big Mac, this one snack comes close to serving up the daily sodium and total fat limits for a child, not to mention the equivalent of nearly 3 teaspoons of granulated sugar.

Serving size: 1 pocket
Calories: 650
Total fat: 27 grams
Saturated fat 12 grams
Sodium: 1,120 milligrams
Sugars: 11 grams

6. Mott’s Original Apple Sauce

 

This applesauce might just as well be called “high fructose corn syrup sauce,” given that HFCS is the second ingredient after apples. Why do that to perfectly good apples? Apples aren’t sweet enough?

Serving size: 1/2 cup (128g)
Calories: 110
Total fat: 0
Sugars: 25 grams

Instead, opt for the Mott’s Natural Apple Sauce (No Sugar Added) version, which has only 50 calories and 12 grams of sugar.

7. Hostess Chocolate Pudding Pie

 

With the right spin, some could argue that a piece of pie isn’t the worst snack in the world. A small homemade slice filled with fruit and a light crust has some redeeming qualities. But the Hostess Chocolate Pudding Pie may, in fact, be the worst snack in the world! Why? In addition to its high fructose corn syrup, partially hydrogenated oils, beef fat and artificial colors, it has almost twice the sugar and fat of a similarly sized slice of homemade blueberry pie. And with its cheap price and easy portability, it’s all too easy to scarf down much of your daily calorie requirement in a few bites before you’ve even left the store.

Serving size: 1 pie (128g)
Calories: 520
Total fat: 24 grams
Saturated fat 12 grams
Sugars: 40 grams

8. Winchell’s Cranberry Nut Muffin

What has the same amount of calories as 10 Winchell’s Chocolate Cake Iced Doughnuts and nearly the same amount of fat as three hot dogs? One Winchell’s Cranberry Nut Muffin! To its credit, this muffin is not nutritionally void (5 grams of fiber and 14 grams of protein) but just beware: the calories, fat and sugar lodge this item more in the cupcake category than healthy snack family.

Serving size: 1 muffin
Calories: 670
Total fat: 37 grams
Saturated fat: 6 grams
Sodium: 640 milligrams
Sugars: 43 grams

How can you make better choices?

 

Look for snacks that are high in protein, vitamins, minerals, fiber, but relatively lower in calories, total fat, saturated fat (no trans fat), sugar and sodium.

Look at the ingredients on the label. Most of us know that ingredients are listed in order from most to least, and we may look to see where something like sugars or fats are listed in the order. But ingredient groups aren’t required to be listed together. So something could contain corn syrup, cane sugar, and malt syrup in seemingly minor quantities toward the bottom of the list — but if you combine them together in a general group of “sugar,” they quickly move to the top.

If a label boasts a product was made with whole grains, check to see where on the ingredient list the word “whole” is. If the first ingredient is “whole” wheat flour (or other grain), that’s good. Sometimes whole grains make up only a tiny fragment of the item, and that’s not good.

Also, it helps to know recommended nutritional limits. Many adults know what their numbers are, and here’s what Mayo Clinic recommends for kids:

Boys and girls 4-8: 1,200-2,000 calories depending on activity, 25-35 percent calories from fat, 1,200 milligrams sodium.

Boys and girls 9-13: 1,400-2,600 calories depending on activity, 25-35 percent calories from fat, 1,300 milligrams sodium.

Boys and girls 14-18: 1,800-3,200 calories depending on activity, 25-35 percent calories from fat, 1,500 milligrams sodium.

Total fat for the categories above: 33 to 47 grams for 1,200 daily calories; 39 to 54 grams for 1,400 daily calories; 44 to 62 grams for 1,600 daily calories; 50 to 70 grams for 1,800 daily calories; 56 to 78 grams for 2,000 daily calories.

 

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