Meal Planning for Intermittent Fasting

Meal Planning for Intermittent Fasting
With intermittent fasting you typically only eat one meal per day. It’s important to pack as much nutrition as possible into that one meal, by combining lots of healthy foods with just enough indulgence to keep you going until the next meal comes around. That’s why it is important to have everything on hand to prepare a balanced meal when dinner time rolls around.

The best way to insure that happens is to plan your meals ahead of time. If you’re already familiar with meal planning you’ll be pleasantly surprised how quick and easy the process of planning and preparing your meals becomes when you’re only cooking once per day.

Intermittent fasting is a great way to improve your health and lose weight, but when you’ve been fasting all day, it’s easy to undo all the good you’ve done if your daily meal consists of junk food and sweets. Instead, make an effort to eat a healthy and balanced meal. Fill your plate with plenty of salad and veggies, healthy fats and a good source of protein Then round it out with a few treats you’ve been looking forward to all day. This way you can indulge in a handful of potato chips or a small slice of cake instead of ravenously finishing up the whole bag or way too much cheesecake when it’s time to eat.

Here’s how I go about planning my meals. I start with a healthy main dish. That could be grilled chicken, fish, a steak or even a burger. Soups or a bowl of chili are favorites in the winter time. I may even fix my favorite pasta dish every once in a while. Next I plan on having a large portion of steamed veggies or a big salad along with another side dish if needed. That’s what goes on my meal plan and everything I need for the week goes on my shopping list. This makes it easy to shop. I know I have everything in the house to cook my healthy meals at night.

Of course a few treats for dessert are fine as well. If your main goal is to lose weight, you want to stick to low carb options with your main meals in general and treats in particular. Dark chocolate, dill pickles and smoked almonds in moderation are all good choices. If your body can handle the natural sugars, some fresh fruit is another great option. Sliced bananas topped with a little heavy cream or whipped cream are a delicious treat.

You might find it helpful to plan in your treats and desserts as well and only by a few small things. Not having a lot of food, particularly anything you tend to crave, is a good way to keep temptation to cave at bay when you’re fasting during the day. Of course it will also keep you from overindulging when it’s time to eat.

Give it a try and see if planning and prepping your meals ahead of time makes it easier for you to stick to your intermittent fast.

Check out more of my blog here: https://cathrynknock.com/blog 

Breaking Your Fast

Breaking Your Fast
There’s A Reason We Call It Breakfast - How to Break Your Fast

We talk about breakfast all the time. And if you believe your mom, breakfast is the most important meal of the day. It isn’t but that’s a topic for another day. For now, let’s talk about the word itself and its origin. When you break it down its break - fast, or breaking your fast. It’s the meal you eat to break your fast and when you think about it, we all fast a little each night. We make it for 10 - 14 hours without food from the time we eat dinner to the time we eat breakfast.

And breaking your fast is an important part of any fast. It doesn’t matter if you’re intermittent fasting or doing on a long traditional fast. Eventually you need to break it and start eating again. And what you eat makes a difference depending on how long you’ve been fasting.

BREAKING YOUR INTERMITTENT FAST

This is the easiest fast to break. You’ve only gone without food for a few hours, basically just pushing back breakfast by a few hours. Or maybe you’ve fasted for a full 24 hours with nothing but a little Topo Chico to sustain you. In either case there aren’t a lot of rules to follow.

Just make sure you don’t eat too fast when you start your main meal. Take it slow and give your body a chance to tell you when you’re full. Since you’ll be skipping some meals it’s also important to pack all the nutrition into the meals you do it. Start with plenty of veggies, add in a quality source of protein and then round it out with the foods you’ve had on your mind while you were fasting.

If you’re sticking to an intermittent fast to lose fat, limit the carbohydrates and sugars in particular as much as possible. You don’t want to cause your insulin to spike and load up your liver with glycogen that you have to burn through before your body can shift back into fat burning mode.

BREAKING A 36-42 HOUR FAST

If you are fasting for longer periods, you also want to start things slow. Break your fast with a cup of broth or some thin soup. Stick to a salad next and slowly start to introduce more solid foods.
Even during a relatively short fast, your digestive system starts to slow down. You don’t want to overwhelm it with a bunch of hard to digest food. Start slow and listen to your body.

Breaking your fast the right way will make sure you get the best benefits possible from your fast and it allows your body to adjust to food in a painless and healthy way.

Check out the rest of my series at: https://cathrynknock.com/blog

5 Tips To Help Distract You From Food During Your Intermittent Fast Time

5 Tips To Help Distract You From Food During Your Intermittent Fast Time
5 Tips To Help Distract You From Food During Your Intermittent Fast Time

Intermittent fasting isn’t hard to do, but we all have days that are harder than others. As a general rule of thumb, the first few weeks will be the toughest to get through. After that your body (and your mind) will be used to not eating during your fasting hours.

That said you’ll occasionally have days that are tougher than others. Most of the time it’s little mind games we play. We tell ourselves that we are hungry, not feeling well, bored, sick, and we just need a little food to make it all better. And those thoughts are enough to get the hunger pangs started.

The key to getting through those days is to distract yourself until it’s time for your next meal. Here are five tips to help you do that.

TIP #1 - STOP STARING AT THE CLOCK

The first thing you need to do is to stop staring at the clock. Time moves much slower when you’re watching the seconds tick by. Don’t even allow yourself to look at the time. Go do something else. Anything!

Get some work done, call a friend, go clean the bathroom, or walk the dog. It doesn’t matter. But whatever you do, don’t look at the clock for a good long while.

TIP #2 - MAKE A CUP OF TEA OR COFFEE

The ritual of making a nice cup of coffee or tea can calm and center you. Take your time and make it last. Then curl up and enjoy that cup. Not only will it help you pass the time, it also fills your belly and that may be just what you need to make it through those last few hours until it’s time for breakfast / lunch.

TIP #3 - GET OUT OF THE HOUSE

Sometimes one of the best distractions is a change of scenery. Go get out of the house. Run some errands, head to your local park with a blanket and a good book, meet a friend for coffee or just head into the back yard for some gardening.

TIP #4 - LOSE YOURSELF IN A GOOD BOOK OR MOVIE

Do you have a book or audiobook that you love? How about a Movie or Netflix Series? Find something you can lose yourself in and use it as a last resort distraction for those days when you can’t get anything productive done or you’re ready to relax and make it through that last hour or two of your fast.

TIP #5 - EXERCISE

Last but not least, get some exercise. Go for a walk, head to the gym, practice yoga, or dance to a Zumba DVD. It doesn’t matter. Not only will you pass the time while burning more fat but, exercise also releases endorphins that will make you feel better.

I hope you’ve found these tips helpful. Do you have some ideas of your own? What’s your favorite way to distract yourself before it’s time to eat again?


What is Ketosis?

What is Ketosis?
What Is Ketosis

One of the reasons intermittent fasting works so well for weight loss is because of a process called Ketosis. If you have ever been on a low carb diet you know that ketosis is a good thing.

If you’re a diabetic, you may confuse it with something called ketoacidosis which is a serious health issue and not something to take likely. If you are diabetic, this is definitely something you should address with your doctor.

Ketosis on the other hand is a good thing. It means your body is burning fat for energy. When that happens, ketones are released as a by-product. They can give you a bit of bad breath, and they are flushed out through your urine. For the bad breath I recommend a drop of a dietary safe Peppermint essential oil. Holler if you need me to help you get your hands on some.

Burning body fat for energy and ketosis are natural processes. If your body has a mechanism for storing body fat, doesn’t it make sense that it also has one to access the energy stored in those fat cells as well? Going through periods of famine has long been part of our human history and the reason we store fat so well in the first place.

Fasting and eating low carb are two great ways to get your body into ketosis and burning fat. That’s why both of them are so effective in helping you lose weight. And if you really want to supercharge your fat loss, combine the two.

It’s easier to do than you may think. Fast for 16 hours per day (let’s say from 7pm when you finish dinner until 11am the next day) and then stick to low carb food during your feeding hours.

Ketosis has one big side effect that will help you stick to your weight loss plan. After fasting and eating low carb for about 3 to 4 days you’re deep into ketosis. And then something amazing happens. Hunger and food cravings simply go away. Ketosis is one of the best appetite suppressants I’ve come across and it makes sticking to this way of eating so much easier.

As insulin goes down and ketones go up, your body also starts to release more adrenaline and human growth hormone. Both of those work together to give you plenty of energy and keep your metabolism running high. You won't feel tired or sluggish after the first few days. Instead you’ll have more energy and you may even want to head out for a little fresh air and exercise (gasp). Now that’s what I call a powerful weight loss combination. And it all starts with Ketosis.

Check out more of my IF series on my blog at https://cathrynknock.com/blog..  

How to Get Ketosis Going

How to Get Ketosis Going
How To Help Your Body Get Into Ketosis Faster During Your Fast

When you fast your body starts to switch from burning primarily carbohydrates for energy to burning body fat (which is why fasting is such a great way to lose stubborn body fat). When you’re switching to burning fat, you go into ketosis which are flushed out in your urine.

The switch from burning sugar to burning fat isn’t always easy. For some of us it has nasty side effects like headaches, body aches and feeling tired and nauseous. That doesn’t sound like a lot of fun, does it? The good news is that the effect is very temporary and over the course of a couple of days you’ll feel much better.

There are, however, some things you can do to speed up this process and ensure that you have fewer or even none of the yucky side effects. Those symptoms by the way are sometimes called “keto flu”. Don’t worry, it isn’t an infection or illness… it can just feel like you may be coming down with the flu.

So let’s talk about how to avoid this tough transition period. Instead of jumping from your regular diet straight into a fast or a very low carb high fat diet, take a week to prepare your body. It will be time well spent and don’t be surprised if you find yourself losing weight and feeling better during this time.

Start by cutting out all sugar and limiting how much fruit you eat. That alone will help, but you can take it even further. Give your body a few days to get used to the lack of sugar, then start to cut back on other carbohydrates starting with refined carbs in things like pasta, pizza, bread and even white rice. Instead eat plenty of fresh veggies, meat and some healthy fat.

This will help prepare your body to switch from burning carbs and sugars for energy to using fat - body fat in particular to keep your energy up and keep you moving. Make sure you drink plenty of liquids - preferably calorie free ones, and definitely no soda or juices. This will help you stay hydrated and it will alleviate things like headaches from sugar withdrawal.

Don't be surprised to notice a nice side effect of preparing your body for fasting. You’ll be losing weight and feeling better as you wean your body off sugar and refined carbs. If you ask me, that alone is worth getting your body ready for fasting and ketosis.



How Intermittent Fasting Can Help You Live Longer

How Intermittent Fasting Can Help You Live Longer
How Intermittent Fasting Can Help You Live Longer

There’s been a lot of talk about intermittent fasting and the health benefits of fasting. There’s even been some research that suggests that fasting can help us live longer. I’m sure you’ve heard about the study of mice that were put on a very calorie restricted diet and they tended to live much longer lives. (we however are NOT setting out to specifically calorie restrict!!!!)

There are even people who stick to very low, strictly plant based diets in an effort to extend their lives. They function on the least food possible; being very careful about what they eat to make sure they get the most nutrition possible from the least amount of calories. I don’t know about you, but that doesn’t sound like a lot of fun.

Does that mean you should be starving yourself? Absolutely not. From what I’ve read, you can get many of the benefits of fasting and low calorie living with intermittent fasting. Some interesting things happen in your body if you stop feeding it three meals and several snacks per day.

Here’s the thing. It isn’t natural for us to have a constant and steady supply of food at all times. And it really isn’t natural to have carbohydrates and sugar constantly in our body. That’s what’s causing weight gain, excess body fat, obesity, metabolic syndrome and eventually diabetes and a slew of health issues.

There are a couple of positive things that happen in our bodies when we go back to the old famine and feast ways of eating. A lot of it has to do with insulin. I’m sure you’ve heard by now that insulin has a lot to do with diabetes and obesity. Insulin is a hormone that is involved in converting sugar and carbs into body fat. On the flip side, we can’t burn body fat as long as insulin levels are high. Instead our metabolism shuts down and we crave sugary food until we give in and feed the insulin monster.

An effective way to cut into that vicious cycle is to simply fast. By fasting even for a few hours, we give insulin levels in our body a chance to go down and we can start to burn body fat for energy. It takes about six hours of not eating before insulin levels will start to drop. Do you see how eating three meals and a few snacks in between can be a problem and add to the obesity epidemic we’re facing?

Fasting helps us start to burn body fat and helps us reverse the negative effects of being overweight. That alone is a plus, but the benefits don't stop there. When we don’t eat, human growth hormone levels start to rise in our bodies. Plus our cells are busy starting to do internal repairs and our body releases adrenalin to keep our energy up. It only makes sense when you think back to our hunter and gatherer days. When there was no food, we needed a way to stay in shape so we can go out and find food. Fasting actually helps us keep in shape and thus helps us live longer and healthier lives.

We may not understand all the internal mechanisms and everything that’s going on yet, but don’t you think it’s worth a try. You may live longer and even if you don’t, you’ll feel better and have more energy to boot.

Which picture below do you want to be? What kind of 85-year old? One who is fit and having a great time in their golden years, or one in an assisted living facility?
 Fit at 85
OR
Needing a Walker and Helper?

I know what I choose!  

You CAN have it too.  Book a call with me today to find out how.Book A Call!

The 16/8 Method: You Can Go Without Food for 16 Hours

The 16/8 Method: You Can Go Without Food for 16 Hours
The 16/8 Method: You Can Go Without Food for 16 Hours

One of the easiest ways to fast is to simply cut out food for a big part of your day. This works particularly well when you have a busy day full of things to do and you need to be able to continue to work hard and stay on top of your game. The idea is simple. You fast for 16 hours per day and fit two meals or a meal and a snack into an eight hour period.

16 hours may seem like a long time, but when you figure in the fact that you spent about 8 of those hours sleeping, it doesn’t seem as daunting anymore. Most of us eat dinner a few hours before we go to bed. That adds a few more hours to the clock. If you are also one of those people that can’t or don’t eat breakfast first thing in the morning, you’re all set. Fasting for 16 hours will be easy-peasy for you.

If you are a breakfast eater and typically wake up hungry in the morning, I promise you that it won’t take you long to adjust to making do without food for the first few hours of the day. Try this. Make yourself wait for an hour or two before you eat. An easy way to do this is to just have black coffee while you get ready in the morning. Keep busy and make yourself wait until you get to the office before you eat. After a week, push your breakfast or first meal back by another hour. Keep going until you can comfortably fast for 16 hours or longer at a time.

Before long you will find yourself consuming only two meals per day. And don’t be surprised if you only eat once as you get used to intermittent fasting. One large meal in the late afternoon or evening along with a big cup of black coffee or tea in the morning is a comfortable way of fasting and eating for many.

Contrary to popular belief, breakfast is not the most important meal of the day and you don’t need to eat three to six times per day to keep your energy up… that kind of thinking leads to the obesity epidemic we’re facing today. Intermittent fasting may just be the solution we need to reverse it.

Did you know I have a course that helps you learn how to intermittent fast safely and effectively and helps you break through diet mindset that has been holding you back by giving you one-on-one and group coaching sessions?  Well, I do.  

Are you ready to get started? Book a call and Find Out Moretoday!


Time-Restricted Eating (TRE)

Time-Restricted Eating (TRE)
Time-Restricted Eating (TRE)

There are several different ways to intermittent fast. Many people follow a time restricted eating (TRE) approach. These are the 16/8, 18/6, 19/5, 20/4 approaches where the first number is the number of fasting hours and the second number is the number of hours of feasting.

Yep, we call it feasting, because as you go along you will find that you will gravitate toward higher quality foods. We call the feasting time our "window". Another common term in the IF community is "window worthy". You'll start to look at food differently and rate it on if it is "window worthy" and if not, you'll find it is super easy to just not eat it.

I used to think Chinese food would always be window worthy. But the last time I ordered from my normal restaurant I was so disappointed. And here's the thing. The food was the same it has always been. But I'm different, and what tastes good to me now has drastically changed.

The biggest change - I used to love flavored coffee creamers in my coffee. Now they taste exactly like what they are - liquid chemicals.

Don't worry if this hasn't happened for you yet. Every body is different, and when you notice changes may be different than when I noticed changes.

Just keep with it. The results in the long run will be well worth it.

Haven't started an intermittent fasting lifestyle yet?  Do you need more information?  Check out these two books that literally changed my life: Delay, Don't Deny and Fast. Feast. Repeat.

I also have a coaching practice where I walk with you every step of the way to help you.  Book a Discovery Call with me today and let's find out if this way of life is right for you.  

Disclosure: This site contains affiliate links to a few select products I use, enjoy, or recommend. I may receive a small commission for purchases made through these links, and your purchase supports companies and products I believe in.        



Spiritual Benefits of Fasting

Spiritual Benefits of Fasting
Let's get started learning about some of the basic benefits of fasting in this new series with our first installment, Spiritual Benefits of Fasting.  


Fasting has a long tradition in many religions as a way to worship.

I've personally never been part of a religion or spiritual practice that specifically focused on fasting, although many within the community may have done it. However, millions, probably billions around the globe fast for spiritual reasons.

And it totally makes sense now that I know what I know about fasting and how it makes my mind so much more clear. I can imagine when practicing reflection how powerful fasting can be to help you get more in touch with your higher purpose.

Some main benefits of fasting for spiritual reasons are:

  • fasting releases your body from the task of digestion and gives your body time and energy to focus your mind more on contemplative action
  • fasting instills discipline over your life and desires
  • fasting can strengthen your resolve when integrated with prayer or meditation
  • fasting can remind of us our human frailty and remind us that we need something more than just the material things in our lives
    Have you ever fasted for spiritual reasons? If so, what is your favorite part?  Do you think learning more about fasting in general could help your spiritual fasting be more successful?
Check out some of the other articles in my series on fasting:

Disclosure: This site contains affiliate links to a few select products I use, enjoy, or recommend. I may receive a small commission for purchases made through these links, and your purchase supports companies and products I believe in.

New Life, New Passion

New Life, New Passion
The past few years I have been in a funk. I'm generally a happy person but I spent my life raising my children while going to school to better our lives and then moving into the work force. And I did it. I got two degrees while raising two young children. I worked through the ups and downs that come from being a single parent. And there were lots of ups and downs, let me tell you. I got a job and worked hard to continue to move up the ladder and I did well and got promotions.

I raised the kids to be functioning adults while working through some serious stuff with each of them. Things that I thought would literally kill them and likely break me. But we all three made it out the other side. And then the kids did what I raised them to do. They became independent and moved on. And left me to wonder, “Now What?”

Yes, I am a searcher, always searching for the next thing. Some call it ‘shiny object syndrome’ and let me tell you – I have it BAD!!! And this was no different.  So, I took a chance and moved to a new job in a new state thinking that would be just the ticket to jumpstart this new season in my life. And it worked...for a bit.... But like most things, external changes can only take you so far.  Dammit, you've got to change internally if you want it to really stick.

And then, a year in to my new ‘shiny object life’, in my new 'shiny object job', in my new 'shiny object state' we have a global pandemic and go into lockdown!!! Now I’m really thinking, “Now What?” To be honest, I was actually thinking, “What the ever-loving F&%K do I do now?!” I mean I had just started to make some friends.

So, for the first part of the pandemic, I did what everyone else did. I sat at home alone (remember the kids have moved on the little brats) and was depressed and ate too much and watched my already obese body get even more obese. And then in July I decided I had damn well had enough of all of this. And I did something about it. I tried another weight loss thing – yep, I’ve tried many over the years (shiny object syndrome, remember) but still my hopeful self was just that, hopeful, that this time would be different.

And guess what? It FREAKING WAS!!!! And it freaking IS!!!! It’s been 9 months, and it didn’t just change my weight, it has changed my entire life. It freed me up in a way I never imagined. It allowed me to reignite my passion again. The passion I kind of lost along the way while parenting, getting an education, getting a job, and just being in survival mode. all. the. damn. time!

Now, it’s turned in to not only a passion project, but a way for me to help others in the same situation to find their way out to the other side. In a less than a year, my entire life has changed. And all I see now are possibilities ahead of me.

Are you looking to change your outlook on life and find your passion again?  I'd love to help you. Reach out to me and let's see what we can do together.  You've got it in you, too - I know it.  

Check out some of the blog posts I've done about my weight journey:
Foray into Fasting
What is Fasting?
Fasting Works - Who Knew?




Diet? Fork That!!!!!

Diet?  Fork That!!!!!
Hello friend. You might have seen a blog post I did several months ago titled "My Foray in to the World of Intermittent Fasting and Hypnosis - Oh My!" where I explained that I had jumped in to the intermittent fasting world and was going to see where things went.

Well, here I am, 9+ months later and it is going great!!!! Like I seriously could not be happier with my results. To date I have released 58.2 pounds, and a combined 33 inches in my hips (7.5"), waist (8.5"), bust (8.5"), thighs (5"), calves (2"), and arms (1.5").

And I’m not done yet. I have a bit of weight left to release before my daughter’s wedding next April and I have no doubt I’ll hit my goal and be confident in my mother-of-the-bride dress!!!  Here's a great comparison photo with today on the left and my before photo on the right.  Can you see a difference?  Maybe I should have measured my face!!!!! :-) 
And I did this without giving up the foods I love and without buying any bottles of pills or supplements, gross shakes and pink drinks, expensive pre-packaged Frankenfoods (you know the ones that really cannot be called "real" food), and no crazy exercise regimens (in fact I just barely started exercising again), and I actually saved money in the process!

And the non-scale victories have been amazing. My acne is not an issue for the first time since puberty (I'm 50), my energy levels are off the charts, my brain fog is gone, my joints no longer hurt, and my knees no longer sound like Rice Krispies when I walk. In fact, the joint pain and crackling knees got better within about 2 weeks of starting.

It has literally been the best thing I have ever done, and it is so F&$%ing easy. It is a lifestyle that I will never stop because it works, and I feel so much better than I ever thought I would.

I am one of those people who loves to share what I am doing with the world and this is no different. In fact, after friends were commenting and asking what I was doing I decided I could benefit others by sharing what I did and helping others break free from the yo-yo dieting world too. So, I created a course and a coaching program to do just that.  We have a private Facebook group and group and one-on-one coaching where you get lifetime access.  Yep, you pay once and I'll be your coach forever.  

So friend, are you ready to finally get off the diet rollercoaster, cut the strings on yo-yo dieting once and for all, and take back your L*IF*E? I sure hope so.  

Book a call with me today and let’s see if this is right for you.  

Book Now

I also have a free Facebook group where I share tips and tricks on how to live a life of balance, growth, and purpose while still being a real person.  We call it Oatmeal, Not Quite Granola - because hey, we can't all be perfect.  Check it out HERE!  

Check out this post explaining the basics of intermittent fasting: https://cathrynknock.com/blog/17932/what-is-fasting-

What Is Fasting?

What Is Fasting?
What Is Fasting?
There are quite a few different reasons why you may be considering a fast. Often our first step into fasting is ordered by the doctor for a particular test or medical procedure. Or maybe you’ve read about the health and spiritual benefits of fasting and are interested in giving it a try.

By definition fasting is willing abstinence from food and drink. Different people fast differently. Some will take a little food or nutrition in the form of juice; others will stick to only water, black or green tea, or black coffee during for the duration of their fast. I personally do what is considered a "clean fast" meaning I only have water, black coffee or green tea, and nothing else during my fasting window.  Because you are either fasting or you are not.  

Fasting for Spiritual Reasons

Fasting has a long tradition in all major world religions. The idea is that the removal of food and with it the worrying about food preparation helps you turn inward. Fasting is used as a way to meditate, pray and get closer to a higher being based on your faith.

In Christian faith, fasting is used as a tool to atone for sins and bring us closer to God. Quite a few Christians will fast for 40 days during lent (the 40 days leading up to Easter). In other faiths - Native American and yogic traditions come to mind; fasting allows the person to reach a higher level of spiritual awareness and is used to gain visions. No matter what your faith, your soul and mind can benefit from a fast.

Fasting for Health

There’s been a lot of talk in the alternative health industry about the benefits of fasting. The basic idea is that if we abstain from food for a period of time, our bodies move energy from processing the food we eat to maintenance mode. The idea is that when food is scarce, our body does everything it can to keep us in good shape to go out and hunt and gather.

Without food in your system, your body shifts to burning fat for energy, resulting in fat loss. This shift away from burning sugar for energy also helps with insulin levels and certain types of fasting (in a controlled environment under the supervision of your doctor) can help reverse diabetes. In addition, fasting has been shown to lower blood pressure and bad cholesterol levels. There is even healing on a cellular level going on.  It's called autophagy, and we will discuss this in future posts.  

Intermittent Fasting

Intermittent fasting is a particular type of fasting where you go for long periods of the day without food, but end up having one or two meals. In essence you’re extending the period of time you usually go without food (while you’re sleeping) by several hours to give your body a chance to switch into fasting mode with all its health benefits.

Unlike traditional fasts where you go without food and most drink for three or more days, intermittent fasting still allows you to eat during a smaller window in your day. Other forms of intermittent fasting have you fast for one or two days per week, eating normally the rest of the time. Either method is a good alternative to traditional fasting and often easier to do and maintain will going on with our everyday life.

Next time we will learn more about some of the different ways to fast (and I'll share more about my favorite).  

Check out this blog on how I got started as an intermittent faster and my first experience with hypnotism. 

Ready to learn more and see if how intermittent fasting can improve your overall health, help you reach and maintain a healthy weight, and increase your energy?  Book a Discovery Call today!!!

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Two-Story Houses and Growth

Two-Story Houses and Growth
When I was a young child I wanted to live in a two-story house more than anything.

Maybe it was because I grew up relatively poor and it seemed like people on TV, like the Brady's or the Bradford's, were this ideal family and the two-story house was just this pinnacle of finally having the good life.


You know - money, a functional family without alcoholism and co-dependency, enough food, and a family that truly cared for each other. And let's be honest, a housekeeper like Alice on the Brady Bunch as a bonus family member wouldn't hurt.

It's funny the things we pick as an ideal in our youth and how those change as we grow older and more wise.

I've lived in a couple of two-story houses since my childhood. The reality is, it didn't change a thing in my life. Because those things are just that...things.

I've accomplished a lot in my life. Most of it, on my own.

I'm a first-generation college graduate and hold an advanced degree. Both of which I earned while raising two young children - on my own. Sure, I had super supportive friends, but when push came to shove, I did it by myself, because I was the only one there at 2 am while one of my children was sick.

I singlehandedly raised my children to be independent and to think for themselves.  And they grew up to do just that. And they are both amazing individuals who I'm so proud of. We didn't always have money, in fact, we rarely had money, but we were together and we survived and succeeded.

I worked hard after I graduated and moved up in my career. Not the accounting career I envisioned, because my kids came first, but one I'm good at. I've finally reached the level I've been striving for - a Director-level position. To get there, I had to leave all I knew, move to a new state, and start over.

But that is what I do. I reimagine my life and I make the change. I did it when I got divorced, I did it when I moved to go to school, I did it again when I moved for a new job.

And what I've learned as I've gotten older, and hopefully wiser, is that ideals and dreams change, and we can change with them, or we can get stuck in what we think is ideal, without ever doing anything about it.

I'm back in a two-story house right now. It's a rental, because at this point I can't yet afford to buy again, but that's OK. It's just a step on my road to the next thing. But after spending 30 minutes vacuuming the stairs this morning I do still want a housekeeper!  And actually,I never want another two-story house again, ifI can help i. 😂

So, what are your dreams from childhood?  Are they different now that you are an adult?  It doesn't matter, either way, as long as you keep growing. 

And if you ever want to come vacuum my stairs, just let me know! 🤣


A Well Trained Dog - Or Dog vs. Nutria Saga

A Well Trained Dog - Or Dog vs. Nutria Saga

A Well Trained Dog

 

Dogs are our link to paradise. They don't know evil or jealousy or discontent. To sit with a dog on a hillside on a glorious afternoon is to be back in Eden, where doing nothing was not boring .... It was peace. - Milan Kundera



It is certainly a lot more fun for you to have an obedient and trained dog. Not only that, but trained dogs, are happier dogs. They are less likely to get into fights with other dogs and will tend to socialize better with dogs that they meet in public.

It is particularly important to have a well-trained dog if you have young members of the family or children in the neighborhood. Just like having well-behaved children, a well-trained dog makes for a happier household.

Here is what happened today.  I took my dog (who let's be honest, could be better trained herself) on a walk at lunchtime.  Come down the street and see two young boys - maybe about 9 years old calling their dog and two other adults (not related to the boys) standing around this tree.  Come to find out, the boys were walking the dog and it saw a nutria (aka - a rodent of unusual size) and the dog gave chase, pulling the leash out of the boys hands.  The dog got the nutria cornered under a tree and that is when I showed up.   

Picture a big overgrown tree with branches all the way to the ground, nutria up in the branches at the base of the and the dog just waiting and barking between the fence and the tree, all surrounded by bushes.  All on the side of a road that can have quite a few cars going by, even during the pandemic.

Yep, a recipe for potential disaster.

One concern is that the nutria would finally swipe at the dog as they can be quite mean and injure a dog quite badly.  Or that the nutria would run out to the street and the dog would give chase and get hit by a car. 

None of us could get close enough to grab the leash, and of course we adults who did not know the dog or the kids didn't want to risk an agitated dog biting us, either.  Or getting bit by a nutria for that matter.

Eventually I convinced the boys to call their mother to come help.  They were quite concerned they would be in trouble.  Mom came finally and after another 10 minutes finally convinced the dog to leave the nutria alone and come to her.  Of course, the dog was just as afraid as the kids that it was going to be in trouble so it basically crawled out on it's belly to the mom.  

So, what is the moral of this story?  The more control you get of your dog when they are young, the better for all.  Maybe if the dog was better trained it would not have pulled from the kids, or it would have come when called.  In all honesty, my dog Twinkle would have reacted exactly like this and she would not have come when called either.  Why?  Because I did not do a good job training her when she was a pup.  She is 7 years old now and is better, but I have taken a much more firm hand with her since moving to a place where she has to be walked more often near nutria, ducks, crows, and other dogs.  

The time that you spend training your puppy initially will impact on the pleasure you can get from your dog for the many years of its life.

Taking the time to train your dog will strengthen the bond you have together and this will ensure a long and happy friendship where both you and your dog benefit. Considering the amount of time that you will be with your dog the time involved in training is minimal and well worthwhile.

There are a few basic commands that need to be mastered and they are all relatively simple. These commands are...

Down: this is where you teach your dog to lay down on command, and is one of the main aspects of any successful training program.

Heel: this is where you teach your dog walk beside you at the same pace without pulling on the lead. Twinkle is a puller by nature. I have found that with her I have to still use a 
pronged collar to keep her from pulling. Not to mention, a dog that pulls too much can damage their trachea.  

Learning the 'No' word: this is a particularly important word for your dog to know and can save you a lot of trouble. In fact it is probably one of the most important aspects of training, if you can get your dog to understand and respond to the word no. Personally I use the term 'Leave It' and have found that to be more successful for me.

It can certainly save you a lot of trouble in the future.

Sit: sit is one of the most basic of all dog training commands and is one that you'll want to teach from the outset to maintain control of your dog's behavior.

Stay: and finally 'stay' - this is important to ensure that no matter where you are, you'll know that your dog will stay precisely where you want it. Gotta be honest, Twinkle does not follow this command at all.

If there is nothing else that you train your dog to do beyond these basic commands, it will certainly improve the relationship you have with your dog and the enjoyment and happiness that you and your dog will have together.

It is well worth the time while still a puppy, as it will improve the quality of life for many years to come. Take it from me, I will be much more firm and consistent with my next dog. At least that is the story I tell myself.

Training will also let your dog know that you're the boss and in doing so eliminate many behavior problems.

Dogs that are untrained can often get depressed, despondent, and unhappy and display symptoms of anxiety and confusion.

You are actually giving your dog a purpose in life, where they will get pleasure out of the fact that they are pleasing you.


What are your favorite tips for having a well trained dog?  Share them above in the comments.  

Want more pet and human wellness tips?  Check out my community where I share more great content.  



My Foray in to the World of Intermittent Fasting (IF)…and Hypnosis!!!! Oh My!

My Foray in to the World of Intermittent Fasting (IF)…and Hypnosis!!!! Oh My!
I’ve been hearing about Intermittent Fasting (IF) for a few years, and to be honest, I thought it was a crazy idea.  Mainly because I had no idea what it really meant, but still, I was sure that was not something I would EVER do.  

Fast forward to now. I don’t know about you, but I have tried pretty much every diet known to woman. The first diet I ever did back in the early days was the Cabbage Soup Diet. Did I lose a few pounds? Yep. Was that sustainable over the long-term? Nope. And like every DIET I have tried since then, once I wasn’t being strict and following the P.L.A.N. I gained all the weight back – and then some!

I’ve done them all. Here’s a recap of the ones I have tried over the years (at least those I can remember):
Cabbage Soup Diet, HcG Drops, Weight Watchers, Isagenix, Diet Power.com, JJ Virgin Elimination Diet, some weird chalky bark like substance that made you have to use the bathroom immediately, with no notice. I tried to find the name of it, but it no longer shows in my Amazon history. I think it has been pulled from the US market. Probably with good reason.
I am sure there are others I’ve tried over the years that I just don’t remember.

So, what about this IF and hypnosis thing? Well, I met someone in my women’s business networking group who is a hypnotist and focuses on weight loss and smoking cessation. I thought, well hypnosis is one thing I haven’t tried yet. Because let’s be honest. One of the main reasons those other options have not worked for me long-term is because I’m great out-of-the-gate, but when the diets are restrictive I just can’t keep to them long-term. So, I met with her and she explained she uses Intermittent Fasting (IF) and hypnosis. I figured I had nothing to lose – except the weight – so I jumped on board.

The first thing I had to do was homework. What? I thought she would just hypnotize me, tell me what I needed to know, and then voila – weight loss. Guess not.

So, here’s what I am going to do. I am going to chronicle my IF and hypnosis journey here in my blog. The deal is, I don’t know how it is going to turn out. But, if you are interested, I’ll be sharing my journey along the way. My research, my wins, my struggles, all of it. Maybe you’ll learn something too.

For now, you can start with the resources I have used so far or have been recommended to me. In future blogs, I’ll try to recap some of the takeaways from the books as well. As of now, I have completely read Delay, Don’t Deny , and most of The Obesity Code and they are eye-opening.

I will tell you all about my first hypnosis session I just had and my first week of IF (I’m starting Monday, August 3, 2020) in my next blog. Most likely it’ll post a week from the date of this blog. My goal is to post at least weekly, but if anything super exciting happens, it might be more often.

Are you an intermittent faster?  If so, please share with me your tips and tricks.  I am so eager to learn. 

Feel free to leave comments by clicking the word comments at the top. See you next week.



Packing a Punch in the Kitchen

Packing a Punch in the Kitchen

Are you ready for some secret ingredients that have added health benefits, bursts of incredible flavors, and NEVER expire?  YES!  Hold onto your apron and let's get cookin' friends...

Dietary Essential Oils

Essential oils can be for more than just aromatherapy?

First things first.  NOT ALL BRANDS ARE THE SAME.  Actually, all brands are different than what I am talking about.   There is only one company in the world offering a Seed to Seal® standard.  So please do not try this with any brand other than Young Living Essential Oils (YLEO).  

Which oils are the ones that are safe to take internally or cook with?  In the US, this is super simple, there is an entire line of them called Vitality™ Dietary Essential Oils.  Vitality Oils are FDA approved and labeled for internal use and they are just what you need to add elevated flavor to your recipes. 

Grab your favorite cooking spatula and read on for simple pairings to try. 

Perfect Pairings

Okay, what goes with what?

If you know me you know I live by the keep it simple rule.  Don't overthink it and let's find ways to find healthy living for #RealLife. This simple graphic and tips below from our friends at YLEO to keep things easy! 

Avocado and Lime Vitality
The zesty flavor of Lime complements avocados very well.  Add Lime Vitality to your fresh guacamole, tacos, or salad dressing recipe.

Garlic Cloves and Rosemary Vitality
Using garlic and Rosemary Vitality is great to add a robust, herb flavor to potatoes, meat, or homemade artisan bread.

Tomatoes and Basil Vitality
Craving Italian? Basil Vitality will bring any pasta sauce, caprese salad, or bruschetta recipe to life.

Blueberries and Lavender Vitality
Lavender Vitality adds sophistication and many dietary benefits! Add this multifunctional oil to your blueberry muffin, jam, or scone recipe.

Apples and Cinnamon Bark Vitality
Apples and Cinnamon Bark Vitality are a perfect pair! Bring warmth while balancing sweetness and spice. These comforting flavors together will be just the thing for your next baked apples, apple pie, or a hearty bowl of oats.

Which one interests you most to try first?  Stay with me, I've got one of my cheat sheets ready for you below to get you started right with your recipe conversions to start using oils!

Oily Conversion Made Simple
You need less than you think, I promise!

Possibly the most important thing to understand for using the YLEO Vitality Oils is just how much to use.  Say you want to try them with your favorite recipes, how do they convert to dry or fresh herbs and spices?  I am so glad that you asked, generally, the answer is that they are MUCH stronger.  So a little bit will go a LONG way. #AskMeHowIKnow #LessonLearned

Some need so little to replace your prior measurement that they are measured simply in toothpick amounts!  Wow.

Download and print this recipe to add your collection: Vitality Essential Oil Conversion Cheat Sheet.pdf














Did you enjoy this info?  If so I think that you will really enjoy my guide on 3-Ways to a Toxin-Free Home, it can be so simple, let me show you how!  Check it out right HERE.



Water, Water Everywhere

Water, Water Everywhere
Water is necessary for life.   And many of us are good at drinking water, but many of us struggle to get water in to our lives unless it is turned in to tea, coffee, or soda.  And we all know those items tend to be diuretics that only tend to dehydrate us more.  So, let’s learn about the many types of water and pros and cons to each type.  Maybe you’ll find a new favorite to help up your water game.  

The basic types of water are: Tap Water, Mineral Water, Spring or Glacier Water, Sparkling Water, Distilled Water, Purified Water, Flavored Water, Alkaline Water, Well Water - I'm starting to feel like Benjamin Buford Blue (Bubba) from Forrest Gump talking about all the different types of water. And I’m sure I left some out.  

Tap Water: The water that comes from – you guessed it – the tap in your house.  Pros, you are already paying for it, it is easy to get and “they” say it is safe.  Cons – the regulatory agencies and city municipal entities have been known to not be truthful ---Flint, Michigan ring a bell?   Plus, depending on where you live it might not taste so good.  Another factor to consider is the material your pipes are made from and the age of them.

Mineral Water: The water that is pulled from a mineral spring.   Pros – it is said to have health benefits from the minerals included in it including sulfur, magnesium, and calcium.   Many prefer the taste of it over tap water.  Cons: cost is the largest factor.  Oh, and if that water is sold in plastic bottles then you have the risks of the chemicals from the bottle leaching in to the water itself.

Spring or Glacier Water: Claims are that these are bottled at the source of the spring or glacier.  Pros: they should be relatively free of toxins and likely contain minerals as well.  Cons: it is pricey.  And there has been cases made that the water is not “naturally” flowing from anywhere.   In most cases, it is being pumped from a hole in the ground.  Check out this lawsuit https://www.nytimes.com/2019/03/29/business/poland-spring-water.html.  So, you are likely not getting what you are paying for.  Oh, and there is still that pesky plastic bottle problem, too.

Sparkling Water: This is just carbonated water.  Pros: many prefer it to plain water as a substitute for soda.  Cons: many of the sparkling waters on the market contain a lot of sweeteners or sugars.   

Distilled Water: Water that is boiled and then the steam is collected and condensed back in to water.  Pros – It’s good if you are not sure of the water source and it’s what you can find.   And it is great for your ironing as it prevents leaving mineral deposits and other things on your clothing.  Cons – there are no vitamins or minerals, so no real health benefits.  It is thought that water with no minerals can actually pull minerals from where it can to maintain balance, so it might not be good for your body or your teeth.  

Purified Water: Usually tap or groundwater that has been…purified to remove harmful substances.  Pros – great if your water source is contaminated.  Most municipal water sources are technically purified water.   Cons – price in most cases.  Buying it in bottles is pricey.  Buying home systems like reverse osmosis can also be pricey.  

Flavored or Infused Water: Water with flavors.  Pros – Makes it less boring, so people tend to drink more. Cons – often full of synthetic ingredients, sugar, artificial sweeteners that negate any benefits you get from drinking more water.  

Alkaline Water: Water with a higher pH level and contains alkaline minerals and negative oxidation reduction potential (ORP).  Pros – higher pH level can help neutralize acidity in the body.  Negative ORP means that it helps prevent oxidation which is better for overall health.  Cons – too much could reduce stomach acidity too much, lowering the stomach’s ability to kill off harmful bacteria.  

Well Water:  Water that comes straight from the ground and is untreated.  Pros – usually if you have a good well in an area with a safe, pristine aquifer you will love the taste of well water.   Cons – because it is untreated water there is a risk of contaminants like giardia.  
 
As you can see, there is more than meets the eye, or glass, when it comes to types of water you can drink.   Each person should make their own decisions on what they feel is best for their family.  Personally, I currently use a filtering pitcher to help filter my tap water.  But still, plain water is boring, so I like to use these electrolyte drops, that are sugar-free, all natural, and give the water a big boost of flavor, and help my body by providing key minerals like sodium, calcium, and potassium that help regulate nerve and muscle function, and keep me hydrated at the same time.  So, water doesn’t have to be boring.
 
Like what you learned, check out my free guide to boosting your immune system

Pupper Tummy Troubles

Pupper Tummy Troubles
UH OH!  Your Pupper has a Grumbly Tumbly!  
 
It’s bound to happen. Your pup gets an upset stomach.  It might be from something they ate or even just stress.  Seriously, some dogs will eat anything, including things better left not discussed in polite company.  Or some pups just have sensitive stomachs.  That’s my pup, Twinkle.  She also happens to be allergic to chicken, which we can pretty much always avoid, but sometimes she is sneaky and will beg the wrong food from someone who doesn’t know. Then we are dealing with itchy skin and tummy troubles.  Yay!

Obviously, the best way to avoid most tummy troubles in dogs is to have a good handle on what they are eating.  But, situations happen.  Like Twinkle deciding this new state of Oregon and the slugs and other bugs in the ground might be worth a taste.  Yuck!!

Thankfully, I learned a thing or two when she was younger that has been a lifesaver for us.  One, is canned pumpkin. Honestly, they should just hand every new pet owner a can with adoption.  This stuff is a LIFESAVER!  The best part, it works for both diarrhea and constipation!  WIN, WIN!  Usually it only takes 2-4 TBSPs to get good results.  And there is a lot more than that in a can.  So, I take the extra, freeze it in ice cube trays, and then pop the cubes out to a freezer bag or Tupperware and toss in the freezer.  Then next time we have tummy troubles, I just grab a cube or two.  You can soften if needed, but Twinkle likes a pumpkin pupsicle, so she’ll just munch on it frozen.  

Another great thing I’ve started using is a good supplement like NutraThrive.  It’s a bit pricey, but I wait until it is on sale and then stock up.  Another good option is just a probiotic like this one. Both of these products help the gut flora in your dogs stomach and intestines to do the work to digest food properly.  Bonuses, less upset tummies, and less gas!!!  

Finally, I always use my powerhouse DiGize on both me or the pups when we have upset stomachs.  It’s combination of Tarragon, Ginger, Peppermint, Juniper, Lemongrass, Anise, Fennel, and Patchouli oils are a must for tummy troubles.   Just a drop or two rubbed on your or your pup’s abdomen and you’ll be feeling better in no time.  

Don’t forget, good products are worth it.  I wouldn’t just buy any dog food, probiotic, or essential oil for my pups, and neither should you.  Make sure you have vetted the company and know you are getting a high-quality product.   

Wanna learn more content like this?  Join my community of normal people who want to learn about healthy ways to live better for them and their animals.   You won’t find any Instagram models here.  We are real people who love a good pizza just like the dog in the picture!  Come check us out HERE.

Catch you next time.  I'm off to keep on Keepin' It Real -----Cathy

Disclosure: This site contains affiliate links to a few select products I use, enjoy, or recommend. I may receive a small commission for purchases made through these links, and your purchase supports companies and products I believe in.


Emotional Pups – No Fun for You or Them

Emotional Pups – No Fun for You or Them
Emotional Pups – No Fun for You or Them
 
It’s almost that time of year.  In fact, it might already be in your area.  You know what I’m talking about right?  Either fireworks or thunderstorms.  The times of the year that can be so very hard on your pets, especially dogs.  Read on to find some great tips I’ve picked up over the years of being a pet owner and helping with pet rescue.  
 
Thunderstorms and Fireworks
Thunderstorms and fireworks can be the bane of dogs everywhere.  Oftentimes, it doesn’t matter if your pup is the best-behaved dog in the world, when the booming of thunder or the bam of fireworks is happening, even the calmest dog can get spooked.  And getting spooked can be dangerous.  Did you know more dogs go missing on the 4th of July (US) and New Year’s Eve than any other time of the year?  

So, what is an owner to do?   
One, don’t ever leave your dogs outside if you know there are going to be thunderstorms or fireworks.   They don’t understand what is happening and they will do anything to get away.  And sometimes, that can be a dangerous proposition if they get out on a road.  Dogs will literally climb or jump 6+ feet fences trying to get away.  

Two, plan ahead.  This means, don’t wait until the event is upon you to figure out what you are going to do to mitigate the fear for your dog.   Get your supplies ready and do some trial runs.  It’ll be less stressful for you both.  

What does planning ahead look like?  
In my house, it means planning a safe space for them, be that a kennel or an interior room.   Yep, I’ve slept in the bathroom many a night with my pups.  It happens less often than before, because now they are used to the items we use and I do my very best to plan ahead and not wait.

Thundershirt
One that I always had on hand for Bryndoll (she crossed the Rainbow Bridge this year) was a Thundershirt.   This Velcro contraption wraps them up tight and helps them feel secure.  The issue most people have is they wait too long to put the shirt on the pup or to get them acclimated to it before there is a need.  If you wait until there is a problem, then the dog will only associate the shirt with being scared, and it is less effective.  So make sure you get the pup used to wearing it, and that you put it on well before it is needed.  I always watched the weather reports and if thunderstorms were projected I’d just go ahead and put Bryndoll in it. Same thing for fireworks.  She went in the Thundershirt at least by late afternoon to ensure it was on before the first firecracker went off in the neighborhood.

Essential Oils
Another thing I use is several Young Living Essential Oils.  And yes, they are the only ones I trust for my family and pets.   Again, the trick is to apply them before there is a problem.  The best way to introduce pets to essential oils is to do it low and slow.  Dogs especially have a very keen sense of smell, so too much oil too fast can make them sneeze and might make them less inclined to want to be around them.  What I have found to work best is to take one drop of oil rub it on my hands, and then pet down the back of the dog.  I try to stay away from the ears so the scent doesn’t overwhelm their nose. 

I also will drop some oil on the Thundershirt as well.  Remember, that just like with people, different oils work better for some dogs than others.   In our house, Bryndoll always loved and was calmed by Frankincense the most.  But Twinkle will come running for our Valor blend.  Seriously, if I open the bottle she comes running to get some.   As you can imagine, that is the first oil I reach for when I know there is going to be fireworks.  Other oils that are helpful to dogs are Lavender, Peace and Calming, and Stress Away.  

I hope this gave you some ideas of things to try to help keep your pups calm during stressful times.   And don’t forget, these work just as well for you, too.  We don’t have Thundershirts for humans, but I hear weighted blankets are great!!!

Remember how I said I only trust Young Living Essential Oils?  That’s because they are the only company with a Seed to Seal promise which means they take the utmost care from the selection of the seed all the way through the planting, growing, harvesting, distilling, bottling, and shipping of the products right to your door.  If you want more information on our process check it out here at www.seedtoseal.com.  And if you want to join me personally in learning more you can contact me HERE and join my community where I teach more about these products, pets, and how to live a bit more naturally HERE.  
 
Let's all do our part ot keep our pets worry-free this summer.  

Keepin' Real, as always ----Cathy
Disclosure: This site contains affiliate links to a few select products I use, enjoy, or recommend. I may receive a small commission for purchases made through these links, and your purchase supports companies and products I believe in. 
 

Healthy Dogs – Happy Dog Owner

Healthy Dogs – Happy Dog Owner

Healthy Dogs – Happy Dog Owner

Read along to learn about simple ways to keep your dogs at the peak of health and avoid some serious dangers that are probably lurking in your home right now. At the end I share my recipe for a safe, non-toxic carpet and cat box deodorizer.
 
Pause and Pay Attention to the Paws
Did you know that dogs absorb everything, and I mean everything through their paws?  And have you ever known a dog that didn’t lick their paws?   Think about it. They walk outside, in the grass, on the sidewalk, everywhere and absorb all the toxins.  I think we all probably understand that.  But did you know, the common cleaners you use in your home are also toxic to your dogs?  So…anyone have a dog always chewing on their paws?  If so, your floor cleaner could be to blame.  

Ingredients such as Methylchloroisothiazolinone, often found in floor cleaners and even many personal care products, is a known toxin and cause of allergies and immunotoxicity.  What is immunotoxicity?  It is defined as adverse effects on the functioning of the local and systemic immune systems.  In layman’s terms, it means it prevents your body’s immune system from working properly.  And the same goes for your dogs.  And since dogs are smaller, toxins can build up in their bodies so much quicker.  I recommend doing a deep dive on the ingredients in your home care products so you don’t have to worry about what your babies – animals and humans alike, are absorbing while just walking around the house.  So what do you use?  I personally use a completely safe cleaner that does everything.  It is my countertop cleaner, my floor cleaner, my window cleaner, my toilet and tub cleaner.  It really is #onecleanertorulethemall!  And the best part: It smells great and it is so concetrated I get up 20 bottles of spray cleaner depending on how I choose to dilute.  Check it out: HERE

And what about those pet fresh carpet and cat box deodorizers?  Most, if not all, of them use a smorgasbord of synthetic chemicals and fragrances to basically mask the odor.  Unfortunately, due to US lobbying efforts of chemical companies back in 1976, most chemicals don’t need to be tested for toxicity, and the word fragrance can include many chemicals that never need to be listed because fragrance is covered by trade secret.  And yep.  Those chemicals are toxic to you and your pets.  Best bet, if the ingredient label says 'fragrance' then stay FAR away.  Click HERE to learn more about how the regulations don't protect the consumer.  

But I have a solution for you.  There is one company I trust that does keep my family and my pets health in mind.  Connect with me HERE to find out more.  

Now for that promised recipe.

Dog and Cat Safe Carpet and Litterbox Deodorizer

Supplies: My favorites are linked for simple shopping
Mason Jar sifter lid or fine mesh screen cut to size 

Take 1 cup of baking soda and add 2 TBSP Diatomaceous Earth.  Mix well.   I usually do this in a larger jar and close up and shake well.  Add 5-10 drops of your favorite pet safe essential oils (I only trust one company for this).  My favorites are Purification and/or Citrus Fresh.  Shake well to combine and let sit.  Then either change out the top of the Mason Jar with the sifter lid or transfer the deodorizer to your smaller jar with sifter lid or mesh screen.  I prefer the mesh screen cut to fit in the top of the ring so you can just put the lid on when not in use and easily remove for shaking.  

Shake on carpets, let sit for ten minutes, then vacuum as usual.   Diatomaceous Earth is very fine so I do find I need to empty my vacuum container a bit more often.  But that's ok by me.

For cat boxes, I keep a jar ready to go right next to the cat box and give a small sprinkle at each cleaning.  

Bonus: Diatomaceous Earth also helps control fleas.  So not only will your house smell great, safely, but you will have a built-in flea control measure as well.  

Want to learn more great tips like this?  Then you'll love my community of people who are living #reallife and learning along with us.  Check it out HERE.

Until next time I'll keep on keepin' it real.  I hope you do the same.----Cathy

Disclosure: This site contains affiliate links to a few select products I use, enjoy, or recommend. I may receive a small commission for purchases made through these links, and your purchase supports companies and products I believe in.

 
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