Healthy Abbotsford Blog

Sitting is Killing You

4hours

This information is from www.getbritanstanding.org. In recent years a variety of major international research has produced compelling evidence that sitting for more than 4 hours each day leads
to:

•Enzymes responsible for burning harmful blood fats shutting down
•Reduced calorie burning (Metabolic rate)
•Disrupted blood sugar levels
•Increased insulin and blood pressure levels
•Leg muscles switch off

We recommend you calculate the hours you spend sitting on an average “working day”. Make sure you include your sitting time when at work, commuting and at home.

Take frequent breaks from sitting. Stand while you are talking on the phone, have walking meetings, walk to a collegues desk instead of emailing, stand during meetings.

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Cooking and Eating on $1.75 a Day

Many families struggle to afford healthy food. In this post there is a great resource that will help make this easier.

April 27 to May 1st is the annual Live Below the Line Challenge. The challenge is, for five days,  to eat and drink on only $1.75. To help the people participating in the challenge the organizers of the challenge have developed a cookbook of recipes that will result in 3 meals per day for no more than $1.75.

Click below to download the cookbook.

LBL_Cookbook_2015

picture of the live below the line cookbook

Click here to learn more about the challenge.

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MEND – FREE Healthy Living Program for Families

What is it?

MEND is a fun, FREE 10 week program for families with 7-13 year olds who want to learn more about healthy behaviours. The program supports families to live a healthy lifestyle. Groups of up to 15 children, accompanied by at least one parent or caregiver meet with program leaders twice a week for 8 weeks. The first hour is an interactive family session on nutrition and behaviour topics, followed by one hour of fun exercise for the children, while parents and caregivers meet for support and discussion on topics such as goals and rewards, label reading and problem solving.

This program is open to all families with a priority given to families who have a child who is above a healthy weight.

When is it?

Our current program just started and we can accept new registrations until Feb. 10. Sessions take place Tuesdays (6-8pm) and Saturdays (9:30-11:30am) at Eugene Reimer Middle School.

Families that attend at least 80% of the sessions will also receive a FREE 3 month pass to Abbotsford recreation centres at the end of the 8-week program!

Where do I get more information?

For more information, or to register, please contact Brenda Adams at mend@abbotsford.ca. You can also put your name down on the waitlist for our session starting in April.

flyer showing kids having fun

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Stuck in a Rut? Try Something New

In this 3:30 minute TED Talk, Matt Cutts shares his experience with doing various 30 day challenges (take a picture everyday for a month, ride your bike to work, stay away from sugar etc.). In particular, he found that doing these challenges:

  1. made his time much more memorable, instead of the months just flying by;
  2. improved his self confidence and sense of adventure;
  3. proved that small changes are sustainable.

He finishes the talk with a fantastic statement,

 

“the next 30 days will pass whether you like it or not. So why not think about something that you’ve always wanted to try, and give it a shot for the next 30 days.”

Capture

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Families – Get Fit and Healthy for FREE!

The City of Abbotsford has been chosen to offer the MEND (mind, exercise, nutrition, do-it) program which is funded through the Ministry of Health. This 10 week program is a fun, free program for families with 7-13 year olds who are above a healthy weight. The program facilitates safe, effective and lasting lifestyle changes by improving children’s physical activity levels, nutrition and self-esteem.

 

Program starts January 7, 2014. Space is limited to 15 families.
Call or email now to secure your spot.

mend@abbotsford.ca or 604-859-3134 local 5297

MEND Handbill - FINAL

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If You Don’t Design Your Life Someone Else Will For You

A while ago I watched a fantastic video on TED. Nigel Marsh, who has written extensively over the past seven years about work-life balance shares four observations from his work and experience. Here are some of the highlights of his talk:

1. Certain job and career choices are fundamentally incompatible with being meaningfully engaged in a day to day basis with a young family – he talks about how there are so many people out there who are working long, hard hours at jobs they hate to enable them to buy things they don’t need to impress people they don’t like.

Is this you? Are you currently in a job that just simply isn’t compatible with having balance in your personal life? If you are, chances are that you have tried time and time again to create more time with your family only to fall short. Take an honest look at your job – is it really possible to have balance with it and  your life?

2. Governments and corporations aren’t going to solve this issue for us – Nigel says, “if you don’t design your life, someone else will design it for you and you may just not like their idea of balance.”

Who is designing your life, you, or the people around you? You have the ability to design your life the way you want it. It will likely mean making difficult choices but at the end of the day if you get to live the life that you want isn’t that worth it?

3. We need to be realistic about the time frame we use when judging the balance in our life, we can’t do it all in one day – it is about finding a realistic time frame without putting your life on hold.

What time frame would be realistic for you? For me, I look at balance on a weekly time frame. During that week did I connect with friends, was I physically active, did I take time for personal reflection and growth? For me a week is long enough to judge the overall balance in my life. Some days are completely out of balance but when I look at the week as a whole that is how I judge my level of balance.

4. We need to approach balance in a balanced way. The small things matter, balance doesn’t have to be a drastic upheaval of your life.

I think that this is a point that is so easy to miss. We live in a society where everything has to be big, be dramatic. Because if it’s not big and dramatic how could it possibly have a major impact on my life? The jokes on us folks, it’s the small things that truly make the largest difference.

Take a moment to think about Nigel’s closing statement - we need to change society’s definition of success from the idea that a person who dies with the most money wins to a more balanced definition of what a life well lived looks like.

My challenge to you – find a quiet place, grab a pen and piece of paper and write down what your life, well lived, looks like. Then do one small thing this week that will move you closer to that vision of success.

To watch the full 10 minute video click here.

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The Most Powerful Drug – August 28 Event

On August 28  one of the world’s leading experts on physical activity and health. Dr. Steven Blair will be doing a public presentation at Matsqui Centennial Auditorium (MCA) from 7-8:30pm. The presentation will include the latest research around what the real impact of physical activity is on our health and he will end the session with time for the public to ask questions.

Not sure who Steven Blair is? Here are a few links that you can visit to get a better sense of what he is all about:

Video (9 minutes) - 23.5 hours

This YouTube sensation (more than 3.5 million views)  which includes Dr. Blairs research

 

Article – Fit vs. Fat, are they mutually exclusive? A case study.

Audio (4 minutes) – Is sitting the new smoking?

This session will also highlight how Healthy Abbotsford is helping promote physical activity and will launch Abbotsford’s  “Exercise is Medicine” initiative.

There will also be an information booth set-up from 5:30-9pm outside of MCA where you can learn more about what is available here in Abbotsford.

EIM - Public Presentation

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All or Nothing Thinking Will Always (Eventually) Get you Nothing

This article comes from Weighty Matters.

Keep-Calm

 

Is there an area of life that is more all or nothing than dieting and weight management?

Truly everything else in our lives we’ll happily accept our personal bests as great, and more importantly, we’re realistic about them. We appreciate that while we can no doubt always do better or try harder that there are fair limits to how hard we can try.

I remember trying to get into medical school. Boy I spent a lot of time in the library and when I didn’t get in to medical school on my first try, following my rejection I didn’t wish I’d truly eliminated every last ounce of my social life to study – I was disappointed, but I was sure that I had done my best knowing full well that at the expense of real life no doubt I could have done more.

Bests aren’t perfection. Bests are affected by real life. Bests need flexibility. And bests change depending on circumstances.

Those folks who head into weight management thinking their bests need to be perfect, that they need to always be on? No doubt in my mind for the vast majority it’s just a matter of time before they’ve frustrated and disappointed themselves often or badly enough that they’ll quit trying altogether.

All or nothing almost always gets you nothing.

Click here to go to the original article.

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Screen free week – another 101 things to do

One thing that has really stood out for me this week is how many things there are to do when you turn off the TV! In researching ideas for the blog posts this week I am amazed at how much there is to choose from. Being prepared with activities is one of the best ways to have a successful screen free week, here are some more ideas from Commercial Free Childhood:

101 Screen Free Activities

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Screen free week – 101 things to do

I came across this disturbing statistic from www.empoweredbyplay.com and it really got me thinking about how important it is to learn to turn off the TV:

What would you do with an extra 32 hours in your week? Plant a garden? Visit a friend? Take a walk? Read a book? Make play dough? You could do all of those things and still have time to ride a bike and help your mom with a chore.  The average preschool child spends 32 hours per week in front of a screen. 32 hours! On a related note, the American Academy of Pediatrics reported earlier this month that about 50% of all preschoolers are not taken outside to play each day by their parents.

This week I have found myself wondering what to do if I am not going to watch TV. Here is a fun list of ideas to help get you thinking outside of the TV box. Click here to download your own copy.

If you enjoy watching TV, or if you have simply just fallen into the habit of watching TV, it can be a hard behavior to change. And it is so important for our mental, social and physical health to get off the couch and live life.

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